DYSPEPSIA GENERATION

We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Archive for January, 2015

Which Deadly Warrior Are You?

31st January 2015

Play it.

Turns out I’m a Ninja.

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Does Public Radio Sound Too ‘White’? NPR Itself Tries to Find The Answer.

31st January 2015

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Of course it does; because it is — and they’re the only ones who care.

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Science Discovers the Parable

31st January 2015

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President Obama’s recent State of the Union address began like many speeches: with an anecdotal story. In recounting the hardships of mother Rebekah Erler, Obama gave the nation a narrative of how government can help a normal middle-class family. Erler had gone through what many ordinary parents faced after the 2008 financial crisis: loss of a housing industry-dependent job and the rising day-to-day costs of raising a family. She was invited to the SOTU, and as she sat next to the First Lady, her story begged for empathy. Camera shots of her grateful visage complemented the orator-in-chief.

It was nice except for one crucial detail: Erler is a former field organizer for the Democrats. This wasn’t the touching story of an average American sharing her trials with the country; it was a political stunt used to help the party of government dependency.

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‘Gender Justice’ Professors Urge Discrimination Against White Males

31st January 2015

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Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, was recently the scene of a forum on misogyny titled “Transforming our campus and strengthening our community.” The discussion, hosted in part by the Canadian university’s Gender and Women’s Studies Program, and featuring a panel of professors and local “gender justice” activists, gave rise to solutions that are as sexist and racist as the problems they claim to be addressing.

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A Modest Proposal to Reduce “Inequality”

31st January 2015

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So Obama has had to abandon his plan to tax 529 college savings plans to pay for his “free” community college proposal, because lo and behold lots of middle class people are 529 savers.  But Republicans could still enable Obama to pay for this proposal with a tax that actually hits the genuine rich: a surtax on large private college endowments—say on all endowments that are more than something like $1 million per student.  This would hit the ivy league schools that these days are raking in nearly $1 billion a year in contributions according to the latest reports.  (I recall an old line from Conan O’Brien—a Harvard grad—about Harvard’s donor pitch: “We’re Harvard.  We don’t need your money.  We just want it.”)  Or instead of a surtax directly on endowments, reduce the tax deductibility of donations to college endowments above a certain level.

And if Republicans really want to start riots in faculty clubs, they should pass Obama’s community college plan with one proviso: that all community college credits be fully transferrable to any four-year college that accepts any federal funding (which is every institution of higher learning except Hillsdale and one or two others).  Watch the four-year colleges sputter with indignation.  Watch Obama veto the bill.

Heh.

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Woman Accepts Cliffside Proposal, Then Falls to Her Death

31st January 2015

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A vacationing woman accepted her boyfriend’s romantic marriage proposal in a picture-perfect cliffside setting in Ibiza — only to fall off the edge to her death as she jumped up and down for joy.

Let that be a lesson to us all.

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Fatness and Intranational Migration

31st January 2015

Lion of the Blogosphere has a theory.

In the comments, there is often talk about the fattening of America, yet I hardly see any fat white people in Manhattan. Thus I came up with the theory, this morning, that thin people are moving to Manhattan and other thin cities such as Washington, Boston, and San Francisco/Silicon Valley, leaving the fat people behind in the rest of the country. Those readers who live in the rest of the country are, therefore, getting the false impression that the population as a whole, is fatter than it really is.

There is also dysgenic breeding for fatness, because thin people in cities get married late, if at all, and have few children, while the fat proles in the rest of the country are a lot more fertile.

Can’t say he’s wrong.

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The Lying Sleeps Tonight

31st January 2015

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Jonathan Ray of the National Interest examines the question of how China builds weapons that it declares are immoral. “Why does China develop weapons systems that it opposes? China criticizes U.S. ballistic missile defense (BMD) systems, but conducted three BMD tests of its own from 2010 to 2014. China regularly supports a treaty to ban space weapons, but has repeatedly tested an anti-satellite (ASAT) system.”

Uh, they’re Communists, and Communists lie like a Clinton? Just a guess, you understand.

Why? Because the Chinese have realized that given a choice between what is real and what is depicted on paper, Western leaders always believe the paper.  Incredulously, unbelieving at first but with growing confidence they realized they can treat Western leaders with the same contempt that European traders once showed to primitive tribesmen in the Amazon or Congo rain forests.

And equally profitably.

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‘A Couple of Things I Know for Sure About Sex’

31st January 2015

Ammo Grrrll connects the dots.

In the endless, tedious discussions about “rape culture,” over and over I read testimony from coeds – adult women! – who willingly get into bed with guys and then are amazed when sex occurs. Is there some parallel universe where that is considered unusual?

Help me out here, young ladies, because I’m pretty Old School. How humiliating can it be if you get naked with a guy and yet you expect no response? (“Hey, nuthin’ to see here. Just your average naked woman from the dorm next door hoping to catch a few Zs while you watch ESPN. Carry on.”) Here we have a generation of women who have been putting condoms on cucumbers since kindergarten who apparently do not have even a passing acquaintance with actual male sexuality.

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Taxing the Rich: The Record Under Obama

31st January 2015

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Not his rich, you understand; the other rich.

The idea is to help pay for other measures aimed at helping low- and middle-income families.

‘Aimed at’ but won’t; what they will do is hire and pay more government employees.

They may also be used to help pay for increased government spending.

Oh, ya think?

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GOPChairmen to Lead Task Force to Develop Obamacare Alternative

31st January 2015

Read it and gag.

It used to be that the ‘Republican alternative’ to an expensive government program was ‘Everybody to pay for their own stuff’, not ‘slightly less expensive government program for the same thing’.

But that was yesterday; and yesterday’s gone….

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USEFUL STUFF SATURDAY

31st January 2015

ChillTHAT! ice cream bowl.

Sectional garage doors.

Coolbox, the world’s most advanced toolbox.

Microwave bowls with handles.

SlatePro TechDesk SE. The best way to celebrate Apple’s record-breaking quarter.

Paintball bow. I am not making this up.

Three Course Electric Steamer.

Popcorn Monsoon.

 

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What We Lose if We Lose the Canon

30th January 2015

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Paris. February 26, 1635. The Abbé François de Boisrobert stands before the newly minted Académie française and denounces Homer as a base street poet who eked out a living by declaiming his verses to the mob. Boisrobert’s impassioned speech was perhaps the first skirmish in la querelle des anciens et des modernes, whereby one group of writers sought to differentiate themselves from those who paid undue deference to the Greek and Latin poets. But the ancients couldn’t be dislodged so easily. When the corpus of Western literature consisted largely of two dozen writers who had set the standard for plays, essays, verse, and satires, it was no simple matter to consign them to the past, especially when the past was still present.

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Nine Trey Gangstas

30th January 2015

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The Nine Trey Gangsters (also referred to as Nine Trey Gangstas) are a set of the United Blood Nation street gang, the latter of which is a set of the Bloods street gang. The gang was established in 1993 at the Rikers Island jail complex in New York City, and operates on the East Coast of the United States. The gang has operated in the U.S. state of Virginia and other states. It has been alleged to engage in the sex trafficking of women and racketeering in Virginia, New York, North Carolina, Maryland and other areas. The gang has also been alleged to be involved in the distribution of illegal drugs, including heroin, cocaine, crack, ecstasy, marijuana and prescription painkillers in these areas. Further allegations include those of dealing in counterfeit U.S. currency and using counterfeit currency to “finance wholesale drug purchases”.

Hey, ‘Black Lives Matter’.

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Using the Book: An Introduction

30th January 2015

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Up to around 1200 members of religious houses—monks and nuns—were the primary consumers of books. They produced the objects themselves and in high numbers, because religious houses could not function without them. The 13th century saw a sharp rise in the production and consumption of books outside the monasteries. Books were now also made for profit in urban shops, both for use by citizens, students and even monks.

Most medieval bookstores were empty because books were too expensive to have in stock. Instead, each customer would have a long talk with the shopkeeper, who would ask how much he wanted to spend, what materials he preferred, what kind of writing style should be used for the text—and so on. The medieval book is therefore always one of a kind. Users often modified the manuscript post-production, bringing it even more in tune with their needs. Bookmarks could be added for quick access to favorite chapters, while nota signs and maniculae placed in the margin marked important passages. Moreover, glosses and slips with notes were inserted where the text needed clarification.

Khan Academy is a magical place.

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Thousands of Early English books Released Online to Public by Bodleian Libraries and Partners

30th January 2015

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More than 25,000 early English texts from 1473-1700 have been released online to members of the public as part of a collaborative initiative led by the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries and the University of Michigan Library.

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Chemists Confirm the Existence of New Type of Bond

30th January 2015

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Donald Fleming, a University of British Columbia chemist involved with the experiment, thought that perhaps as bromine and muonium co-mingled, they formed an intermediate structure held together by a “vibrational” bond—a bond that other chemists had posed as a theoretical possibility earlier that decade. In this scenario, the lightweight muonium atom would move rapidly between two heavy bromine atoms, “like a Ping Pong ball bouncing between two bowling balls,” Fleming says. The oscillating atom would briefly hold the two bromine atoms together and reduce the overall energy, and therefore speed, of the reaction. (With a Fleming working on a bond, you could say the atomic interaction is shaken, not stirred.)

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Hipster Churches in Silicon Valley: Evangelicalism’s Unlikely New Home

30th January 2015

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The Bay Area has never been perceived as religious: a 2012 Gallup poll found that fewer than a quarter of residents identify as “very religious” (defined as going to church weekly), as opposed to 40% of the nation as a whole. High salaries have drawn droves of well-educated millennials to the booming tech sector, which correlates with lower religious sentiment. So far afield from the Bible belt, the region is in fact seen as hospitable to all forms of old testament abominations: fornication, paganism – even sodomy.

If you look around, however, you’ll notice a bumper crop of newer Christian ministries that, upon superficial glance, could pass for any other Bay Area start-up: glossy web design, well-curated social accounts and yes, free coffee promotions. County-level statistics substantiate this: numbers from the Association of Religion Data Archives show that several large Protestant denominations have grown in San Francisco County in recent years.

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Enjoying the Race Wars? Thank the Media.

30th January 2015

Gavin McInnes turns over a rock.

The media love hate crimes because they seem to explain everything that’s wrong with America and put the blame on someone who can handle it: white people. Unfortunately, there aren’t enough hate crimes against blacks to go around, and journalists are forced to invent them. What they don’t realize is that the biggest hate crime hoax is the press itself.

By creating an imaginary reality where blacks are constantly under siege, they are all but daring them to attack and murder whites. The media have created the racial tension they were going for, only they got everything backwards. In an attempt to create a fictional world where whites hate blacks, they accidentally created a real one where blacks hate whites.

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Male and Female Marriage Returns to Schooling

30th January 2015

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A collective marriage matching model is estimated and calibrated to quantify the share of returns to schooling that is realized through marriage. The predictions of the model are matched with detailed Danish household data on the relationship between schooling and wage rates, the division of time and goods within the household, and the extent to which men and women sort positively on several traits in marriage. Counterfactual analysis conducted with the model suggests that Danish men and women are earning on the order of half of their returns to schooling through improved marital outcomes.

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University Professors Blame the West for Paris Terror Attacks

30th January 2015

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Middle East studies professors responded to the attacks by Islamic terrorists in Paris earlier this month not with rigorous, informed analysis or even unadultered sympathy for those gunned down in the offices of Charlie Hebdo and a kosher market. Their reaction was instead precisely what one has come to expect from academics more concerned with shielding Islam from blame and shifting responsibility for its adherents’ actions to the West than with the disinterested pursuit of truth.

My, what a surprise! Aren’t you surprised? I’m sure surprised.

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The First Rule of Feminism

30th January 2015

The Other McCain boils it down.

Feminism is the belief that men are entirely useless, except when men are destructive and evil. If you think any man ever had any skill, knowledge or virtue that entitled him to be treated with courtesy and respect, you are not a feminist.

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Report: United States Kept Secret Its Chemical Weapons Finds in Iraq

30th January 2015

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The U.S. government suppressed information about chemical weapons it found in Iraq, and several servicemembers were injured by their exposure to those weapons, The New York Times is reporting.

In an article published late Tuesday, the newspaper says it found 17 American servicemembers and seven Iraqi police officers who were exposed to mustard or nerve agents after 2003. They were reportedly given inadequate care and told not to talk about what happened.

“From 2004 to 2011, American and American-trained Iraqi troops repeatedly encountered, and on at least six occasions were wounded by, chemical weapons remaining from years earlier in Saddam Hussein’s rule.

“In all, American troops secretly reported finding roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, according to interviews with dozens of participants, Iraqi and American officials, and heavily redacted intelligence documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

God forbid anything should interfere with the ‘No Blood For Oil’ or ‘Bush Is A Stupid Warmonger’ memes. (Will the Times apologize for the ‘NO WMD WERE FOUND!’ coverage? Surely you jest.)

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This Is How Your Tax Dollars Paid for the Super Bowl

30th January 2015

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You might as well watch the Super Bowl, America: You’re paying for it.

Forget about the league’s federal antitrust exemption dating back to the ’60s that allows it to yank any game off broadcast television it likes if it feels there aren’t enough backsides in the seats. Let’s forget about the same antitrust exemption that declared the NFL a nonprofit 501(c)(6) organization on par with a Chamber of Commerce or real estate board. Hey, let’s even forget a Federal Communications Commission ruling that, for almost 40 years, forbids cable and satellite providers to switch to a live feed of a game that was blacked out in a local market.

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8-year-old Girl Suggests a Possible Cure for Cancer

30th January 2015

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Camilla Lisanti’s parents are both cancer researchers at Manchester University. Over dinner, her father, Michael, asked her how she would cure the disease, and she suggested using antibiotics, “like when I have a sore throat.”

Michael and his wife, Federica Sotgia, tested her theory at the lab and were surprised to find that several cheap and widely used antibiotics destroyed cancerous cells in samples from breast, prostate, lung, ovarian, pancreatic, skin, and brain tumors. Some of the antibiotics worked by preventing cancer cells from making energy-providing mitochondria— which cancer stem cells are prolific in.

Kudos to her parents for actually following up.

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Oregon Gov Under Fire After Fiancee Admits Getting $118G in Consulting Role

30th January 2015

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Oregon Democratic Gov. John Kitzhaber has called a press conference for Friday morning after his fiancee disclosed that she had collected $118,000 from an out-of-state clean energy group while advising the governor on clean energy policy.

Cylvia Hayes admitted in an e-mail to the East Oregonian newspaper in Salem Wednesday that she had been paid $30,000 in 2011 and $88,000 in 2012 by the Clean Economy Development Center, based in Washington, D.C. The paper reported that it is unclear what Hayes’ actual duties were for the organization, which promotes clean energy policies nationwide.

During that period, the Oregonian reported that Hayes referred to herself as Kitzhaber’s clean energy and economic development adviser. She also served as CEO of 3E Strategies, a consulting firm that she founded, a situation that has previously prompted ethics complaints against her and the governor.

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Father, Son Bag Charging 700-Pound Boar in North Carolina

30th January 2015

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You might have to go to Washington to find this much pork.

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North Carolina Woman’s Death Investigated as Possible Bear Attack

30th January 2015

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A North Carolina woman known as the “Bear Lady” for her devotion to feeding black bears that visited her remote Tyrrell County property might have been killed by the very animals she cared for, authorities said.

The remains of 67-year-old Kay Grayson were found by law enforcement Monday in woods about 100 yards off a dirt road leading to her home, after a resident alerted authorities that she had not seen the woman in several days, Tyrrell County Sheriff Darryl Liverman told FoxNews.com.

Think of it as evolution in action.

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Iran Calls for Assassination of Netanyahu’s Children

30th January 2015

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Iran is encouraging its terror allies to pursue the assassination of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s children by publishing personal information about them, including photographs of the kids lined up in crosshairs, and declaring, “We must await the hunt of Hezbollah.”

Reminder for the dimwitted: Islam is an oppressive totalitarian ideology, masquerading as a religion, with which no co-existence is possible.

Posted in Living with Islam. | Comments Off on Iran Calls for Assassination of Netanyahu’s Children

How Sequencing Foods’ DNA Could Help Us Prevent Diseases

29th January 2015

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Enter a new project from IBM Research and Mars Incorporated. Today, scientists from the two organizations announced the Sequencing the Food Supply Chain Consortium, a collaborative food safety organization that aims to leverage advances in genomics and analytics to further our understanding of what makes food safe.

The researchers will conduct the largest-ever metagenomics study of our foods, sequencing the DNA and RNA of popular foods in an effort to identify what traits keep food safe and these can be effected by outside microorganisms and other factors. Eventually, the researchers will extend the project “from farm to fork,” examining materials across the length and breadth of the supply chain.

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Selfie in Front of Running Train Costs Three College-Goers Their Lives

29th January 2015

Darwin award.

Attempts to click “eye-catching pictures” to upload them on social networking sites cost three college going friends from New Delhi, Moradabad and Faridabad their lives on Monday when they were run over by the speeding train.

Think of it as evolution in action.

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Modeling Suspects’ Faces Using DNA From Crime Scenes

29th January 2015

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This winter, a biotechnology company began offering a whole new service to police departments. Virginia-based Parabon NanoLabs’ Snapshot service allows police to send Parabon NanoLabs DNA samples taken from crime scenes. From that DNA, the company reconstructs a guess of what the person’s face looks like.

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Big Sugar Leaves a Bitter Aftertaste

29th January 2015

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Taking candy from a baby is easy. Taking sugar from a senator? Not so much. For decades, economists, free market think tanks, good-government advocates, newspaper columnists, and even the occasional elected official have decried the special treatment enjoyed by the American sugar industry.

Under current policies, U.S. sugarcane and sugar beet farmers receive minimum price guarantees regardless of market conditions. In addition, the federal government allots 85 percent of the U.S. sugar market to domestic producers, and it imposes quotas and tariffs on the 40 countries that are allowed to export sugar to America.

In 1993, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) estimated that such policies were costing U.S. consumers $1.4 billion a year because they resulted in “higher prices for domestic sugar.” Twenty years later, the University of Michigan–Flint economist Mark J. Perry estimated that this annual cost had grown to $3 billion by 2012, and that consumers and U.S. sugar-using businesses had paid “more than twice the world price of sugar on average since 1982.”

In other words, sugar producers are getting a sweet deal, while consumers are getting screwed.

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Outragists Are the New Awful

29th January 2015

Scott Adams connects the dots.

I coined the word outragism and defined it as the act of generating public outrage by quoting famous people out of context.

Creating the word is only the first part of my strategy.

My plan is to arm victims of false accusations with a word that has equal weight to the accusation. For example, if you are falsely accused of being a Nazi sympathizer because you watch the History Channel, the accuser is using full verbal firepower and all you have is a weak denial about your interest in history. It isn’t a fair fight.

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ArnoldC

29th January 2015

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Programming language based on the one-liners of Arnold Schwarzenegger.

I am not making this up.

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Multicultural Meltdown

29th January 2015

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“Do you believe in witchcraft?  Do you believe that men can turn themselves into bats and fly?”

I confess to being a little nonplussed by such questions. But then I remembered that this is Britain in the 21st century, and the lunatic fringes of the Third World are now firmly anchored in the mainstream.

Honor killings, forced marriage, people trafficking, slavery, violent exorcism, clitoral mutilation, child grooming, and masked jihadists wishing to slit our throats—you name it, it’s part of our much-lauded, colorful cultural mix. Without a single vote being cast or our opinion being sought, the nation has been hijacked. Yes, on occasion, I pray for the power to transform myself into a bat and fly the hell away from here.

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50 Years of James Bond in Black Tie Inforgraphic

29th January 2015

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Just in case you had a bet going or something.

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Narrative Formation Case Study: NYT’s Role in the Ferguson Fiasco

29th January 2015

Steve Sailer blows the whistle.

As you’ll recall, the Myth of Michael Brown collapsed in mid-August due to two revelations. On August 15, the convenience store video appeared showing gentle giant Michael Brown violently shoving the poor little Asian store clerk who tried to stop him from stealing. Then two days later, the Brown family’s privately-hired coroner announced Brown wasn’t shot in the back. His wounds were fairly consistent with the cop’s story.

Unfortunately for the New York Times, the national media in general, the town of Ferguson, the Democratic Party in November, Zemir Begic, NYPD Officers Liu and Ramos, and America in general, the Megaphone had apparently passed its Point of No Return by August 14, 2014.

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The Christmas Junta

29th January 2015

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Yesterday’s political agreement in Sweden would have been labeled a “coup” had it occurred in some Third-World backwater. The seven mainstream political parties got together and agreed to ignore the wishes of their respective voters, and will act in unison from now until 2022. This wholesale abandonment of democracy was undertaken in order to maintain (or increase) the current unsustainable rate of mass immigration into Sweden, and to keep the Sweden Democrats from increasing their presence in parliament.

The agreement guarantees that Swedish voters will not get a chance to repudiate the new junta until the next general election in 2018. However, given the current rate of political self-destruction in Sweden, there may no longer be a functioning polity in four years in which meaningful elections can be held.

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General’s Alleged ‘Treason’ Remark Probed by Air Force

29th January 2015

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The Air Force is investigating allegations that the No. 2 commander at its prestigious Air Combat Command told lower-ranking officers that talking to members of Congress about the capabilities of the A-10 attack aircraft is tantamount to treason.

Post is reported to have told Air Force officers attending a recent weapons and tactics conference in Nevada that it is their duty to support the service’s budget priorities by refraining from offering opinions inconsistent with those priorities. Air Force leaders have proposed retiring the A-10 fleet but Congress has refused, and some inside the Air Force have sided with Congress.

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When Chocolate Was Medicine

28th January 2015

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Chocolate has not always been the common confectionary we experience today. When it first arrived from the Americas into Europe in the 17th century it was a rare and mysterious substance, thought more of as a drug than as a food. Christine Jones traces the history and literature of its reception.

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Four Anecdotes About Racethink

28th January 2015

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While the announcer was rightfully scourged for this ellipsis of common sense, I find to my dismay that if you google the phrase, there are still people using it. I wonder what term we will use in the future to distinguish African Americans from other nations versus African Americans from America or African Americans from Africa?

Likewise, my friend, born in South Africa, stepping into the student union hall for African American students on her campus on a hot day, to sit in a chair, panting, and enjoy the air conditioning, when she was peremptorily commanded to leave by a black woman, because this was the African American Student Union. My friend was unable to restrain her outrage, and shouted in her delightful British accent, “You fools! I am the only African in this room!”

I am reminded of the white kid from Tanzania, 3d generation in that country, whose first language was KiSwahili, being turned down for a scholarship that was reserved for students ‘of African descent’.

Posted in Axis of Drivel. | 2 Comments »

When You Wish Upon a Star: Nuclear Fusion and the Promise of a Brighter Tomorrow

28th January 2015

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Everything about the project, known as Iter (formerly known as the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor), is huge. The main fusion reactor will be built on a flattened area of concrete that has been blasted into the hills at Cadarache and stretches to 60 football pitches. Around 2.5m cubic metres of earth and rubble were excavated from what was originally a small valley that undulated by several hundred metres in parts. That concrete baseplate sits on dozens of pillars containing layers of rubber sandwiched between the mortar and cement – not only do these pillars raise the building above the height of the surrounding countryside (the height was calculated to be above the maximum height that water would flow past if the nearby dam broke), they also create a “seismic isolation pit” that will protect the building from earthquakes.

And it’s not happening in America because bureaucrats and eco-Nazis have made it too expensive. Lucky us.

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Facebook Addiction and GPA

28th January 2015

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Think of it as evolution in action.

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Medieval Warfare Magazine – Volume V Issue 1

28th January 2015

Check it out.

My favorite: The Battle of the River Talas – The Abbasid Caliphate vs the Chinese Tang dynasty — coming soon to an XBox near you….

Posted in Is this a great country, or what? | Comments Off on Medieval Warfare Magazine – Volume V Issue 1

11 Human-Trafficking Bills Passed by U.S. House Tuesday

28th January 2015

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FlickrOn Tuesday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a spate of bills addressing human trafficking. Though politicians on both sides of the aisle have been crowing about their good work here, the bills do very little to address labor trafficking, which comprises the majority of human trafficking, according to the U.S. State Department. Rather, most focus on the more salacious prospect of sex trafficking, especially the sex trafficking of minors.

‘We have 11 human trafficing bills.’

‘Oh? How much are they charging us?’

Posted in Your tax dollars at work - and play. | 1 Comment »

Snowpocalypse 2015

28th January 2015

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Columbia never used to shut down at all, New York City never used to shut down the transit system, and the states never used to shut down all roadways. Until the past decade or so people tried to go about their business here in the winter, taking action to shut things down only once snow had arrived and was causing a problem. The US has now become a nation of hysterics, with media-driven hype frightening everyone about everything, and public officials desperately taking action to protect the citizenry from imaginary threats.

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Apocalypse Soonish Redux

28th January 2015

Kevin Williamson is fed up.

Last autumn, I argued in National Review (“Apocalypse Soonish”) that the real intellectual achievement of the climate-change alarmists has been to improve on the marketing model of the traditional fundamentalist-wacko/UFO-cult/Mayan-calendar-lunatic operation by eliminating its greatest weakness: the expiration date. When your UFO cult predicts that the world will unquestionably come to an end on December 21, 1954, then you start to look sort of silly by Christmas.

Posted in Think about it. | Comments Off on Apocalypse Soonish Redux

Who Worries About Income Inequality?

28th January 2015

Don Boudreaux, a Real Economist, uncovers a rock.

I’ve never worried about income inequality. It’s not that I’ve not worried much about it; I’ve not worried about it at all .

Income inequality — like the color of my neighbor’s car or the question of the number of pigeons in Central Park — just never dawns on me as an issue worthy of a moment’s attention. More importantly, I’ve never encountered many people who worry about inequality.

Indeed, the only time I had regular, close contact with people who express anxiety about inequality was when I was in law school at the University of Virginia. And there, those who wailed most loudly about inequality were those from families that were, as we say, the “most privileged.”

 

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In It to Win It

28th January 2015

Walter Russell Mead looks at Putin from a Davos perspective.

The trouble is that the contemporary Western mind has a hard time grasping a basic truth about both Putin and ourselves; we are not the world, and Putin is not us. There are three subjects on which virtually everybody in the Western policy and intellectual establishments agree: think of them as the core values of the Davoisie: The first is that the rise of a liberal capitalist and more or less democratic and law-based international order is both inevitable and irreversible. The second is that the Davos elite—the financiers, politicians, intellectuals, haute journalists and technocrats who mange the great enterprises, institutions and polities of the contemporary world—know what they are doing and are competent to manage the system they represent. The third is that no serious alternative perspective to the Davos perspective really exists; our establishment believes in its gut that even those who contend with the Davos world order know in their hearts that Davos has and always will have both might and right on its side.

But Putin lives and thinks outside of the Davos box. By Davos standards, Putin is a heretic and a renegade. He thinks the whole post-historical Western consensus is a mix of flapdoodle and folderol. It is, from his perspective, a cocktail of ignorance, arrogance, vanity and hypocrisy, and he wants no part of it.

Putin isn’t exactly right about the Davos consensus; there is more inertia and power behind the global status quo than he understands. But because he is outside the Davos bubble, he sees things that the Davoisie can’t, and it is those insights, some more valuable than others, that enable him to astound and wrong-foot his opponents time after time.

Posted in Dystopia Watch | Comments Off on In It to Win It