We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Monday, December 26. 2011
Monday morning links
I think there is nothing new about this. Lots of people used to fake it. Now they don't bother.
Radical reform of higher education is inevitable:
Americans that are satisfied with “national condition” 2nd lowest since 1979
Europe's economic problems with low birth rates
Solyndra: Politics infused Obama energy programs
"I start dreading Christmas from the time the decorations go up in the stores," she says. "It stopped being fun for me, so I'll find out this year if I can do without it altogether. I think it will be a relief. It already is."
The Police Have No Obligation To Protect You. Yes, Really.
State of Denial: How New York May Squander Its Energy Boom
Russia: Fragments of a Defunct State
Someone tell my why we need governors or legislatures or even voters …
Muslim Persecution of Christians
Christians are under fire in the historic Holy Land
China Insolvency Wave Begins As Nation's Biggest Provincal Borrowers "Defer" Loan Payments:
Welcome to Cairostan - Egypt’s radicals eliminating country’s connection to West, but does anyone care?
Bruce wonders whether you've ever seen a Jewish Zebra:
Posted by Bird Dog in Hot News & Misc. Short Subjects at 06:12 | Comments (6) | Trackbacks (0)
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The Police Have No Obligation To Protect You.
There are cases where common sense runs afoul of the "law" and clearly the Colorado event is one of them. Strangely, I understand the SCOTUS majority decision completely and it makes sense. When you read through the decision and the notes that accompany it, you get the impression that the complaint wasn't properly formed, argued and researched. I'm not a lawyer so I couldn't say what Gonzalez should have done, but it seemed to me that she, and her attorneys, went in the wrong direction.
The San Francisco case is a little different however. The fact that an organization built on the foundation of rescue and fire protection service, paid for by the citizens, not responding to a clear emergency in which they clearly could have acted is not the same thing. The evidence of potential harm was right in front of them and the harmful act being performed was open and plainly visible. The fact that the FD didn't have cold water rescue training or equipment is hog wash. San Francisco has two fireboats - the 88' Guardian and the '89 Phoenix both capable of 17 knots against the tide and located only a stones throw away from the place where the event occurred. You can't tell me that the crews of these fire boats aren't trained in cold water rescue. Additionally, the FD and PD could have called the San Francisco Harbor Master or the USCG - I know for a fact that the Harbor Master's boats have trained rescue crews and of course the USCG trains for this all the time.
You do know, Tom, that administrative barriers are the most impenetrable of all, the sturdiest, strongest, and unbending of all the barriers. Pretty much impervious to thought as well...
Yes I do. That still doesn't make it right. I spent 20 years in the volunteer fire service both as a EMS and Fire Officer and have made safety decisions - after the building had been swept by a SAR team I've let it burn to the ground in fact - gun powder in the building. You don't let people burn in a building, but you can let the building burn.
When I read Sam's comments on administrative barriers, I was reminded of groups of society (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th estates); with this in mind I realized that there is another (6th estate) forming--the very strong network of women in mid-management positions. You might dig deeper Tom, who knows you might find another layer of poorly trained females without a system of ethics.
When my church (Episcopal) was reduced to a support network for the gay/lesbian community and the unions of America, I stopped attending service. After all, they removed the prayers I had been trained to focus on, they removed the music that stirred my soul, and when the minister told me he was not interested in presenting a service that required individual meditation, I quit going to church. At the same time the consumerism around this holy season grew, and grew, and grew. For years now, I have been telling store managers that put up Christmas displays before Halloween--that I will not be shopping in their store until after the first of the year. They know I mean it too--because when they see me again in January they usually greet me and act chagrined, saying something like--I couldn't help it, order came down from some headquarters a million miles away. I often wonder how the Jewish community would react if we decorated every store in October in Blue/White and with signs everywhere telling you to buy this and scream Happy Hannuka ?
No. For me the "traditional Christmas" as our families knew it died a long, long time ago. I put up live greenery and a centerpiece made of the same, I put out a nice Poinsetta plant and some woodsy smelling candles. Like BD we treat ourselves to a musical program, or a literary event in the neighborhood during the first part of December. We have recorded our favorite Christmas music and don't start playing it until about Dec. 22. Each daughter gets one lovely gift about $100 +/- $20. I do bak lots of cookies and take a small box to everybody in town who has helped me that year:banker, car repair guy, etc.
This year at Barnes and Noble I happened to see a new edition of "The Gift of the Magi". I told DH how much impact that little story had on my life. That was in our little pile of gifts by the fireplace--I am thrilled. YUP they beat the consumerism out of me over the years; they destroyed my church, but they have not destroyed my faith, nor a simple tradition--a reminder of a special gift above all others--life itself.
I'd like to ask the thoughtful folks who post here one question. Who has a better right to seek refuge in the United States: Coptic Christians, or Muslims? One must remember that the Muslim Instruction Manual, otherwise known as the Koran, bids the Muslim faithful to execute the dhimmis or infidels whenever they feel that they need a "lift." That's us Western civilizations, folks, the Judeo-Christian faithful. The Copts, who are Christian, have no such instruction in their instruction manual.
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