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Faneufy's Truth

This Blog Site is dedicated to the "Loonetariun" philosophy of Life, Liberty, Politics, Happiness and above all else, the never-ending pursuit and spread of Truth in the Loonetariun way. The Loonetariun way suscribes to no political parties. We take no

Updated: 2015-09-17T02:34:34.448-04:00


Tighter Bankruptcy Laws Still Favor The Rich.


Reality has once again invaded Faneufy's life, and I'm here to tell you, it sucks! Vacation is over, it's back to work and the hard facts of living paycheck to paycheck are here again. I do not whine because I know many Americans who are in the same boat or worse off. At least I had the money for the Super Bowl and vacation. When you combine that with your team winning the game, establishing the first NFL dynasty in many years, getting and staying drunk for a week, eating around forty varieties of chicken wings, (I did not know there were more then about five chicken wing recipes out there), hitting the end of Mardi gras, and then somehow finding your way home safely - priceless! Ah, such is life.One of the first things I had to deal with today concerns my girlfriend. A few years back she had some medical problems which her insurance only paid a percentage of, and in the end left her with final expenses to the tune of around $28,562. That's a lot of donut money! There are many families and individuals that have run into the same financial situation with medical expenses. Medical expense is not the same as walking into JC Penny and maxing out your credit card, then heading to Boca for a week on the VISA, and so on, and so on until you wind up in bankruptcy court. Then, in seven to ten years you get to do it all over again. Why not? Every day I open the mailbox and there are at least three credit card applications, which by the way is one of the reasons contributing to the national debt and impending bankruptcy legislation.Medical insurance just is not what it used to be. My girlfriend has Blue Cross through work and it is I believe the best program offered, but compared to what insurance used to be, still sucks. I remember a time years ago when I used to pay around $6.20 weekly for BC/BS and the insurance covered everything along with a prescription drug plan. Nowadays, I'm paying over $300.00/month for health insurance and it almost makes me want to go to the doctor just to feel I'm getting use out of the thing, and while I'm there, get some drugs to use the prescription plan which is adequate. Unfortunately, my girlfriend just couldn't pay off the bill fast enough. The bill was referred to a collections attorney who was a complete asshole and wouldn't cut her any slack as far as working out a reasonable payment plan. He wanted something like $500.00/month at least, plus he was charging interest on the unpaid balance. I tried to talk to him and almost threw him out his eight story office window. Jail was nice, it seems that they had just reopened the floor I was on after redecorating, however the food sucked. Our little one-on-one did accomplish something though in that it cut the phone calls to the house right down. The attorney wouldn't call our apartment after his introductory flying lesson so all was not wasted. The end result of all of this is she has no choice but to file Chapter 7 which I think is her only recourse.So, today I'm reading the news and I come across this little news piece entitled, "Tighter Bankruptcy Law Favored." Bills Making It Harder to Erase Debt Set to Clear Congress. My first reaction is to think, you know it's always something. Then I read on and I come across something within the piece that really bugged the crap out of me. I fathomed from reading the article that Congress has been trying to pass some kind of bankruptcy legislation for some years now. Twice in the last seven years, bankruptcy bills have passed both the House and Senate, only to go down in defeat, once vetoed by Clinton and another time after originally backing the bill, House Republicans voted it down after an amendment was attached to it that they didn't like. Two more bills have been reintroduced within the last week that both the House and Senate like, and the President has said he will not veto.Lobbyists for the credit card industries want the legislation in order they say to close loopholes that make it too easy for people to wipe out their debts when they could repay some of them. Really now! These are the same idiot[...]



A Dynasty Is Born!

I'm not going to gloat. Yes, I am! I can't help myself. I can now truly die a happy man. The Red Sox and the Patriots in the same year. Who could ask for anything more. Well, maybe another beer! Congradulations to the New England Patriots!

I Wonder If We Could Learn Something From This?


It seems a judge in Yemen may have come up with a rather unique way to combat terrorism within his country. He and four other Islamic scholars basically go into the prisons that house al Queda prisoners and challenge these prisoners to a "Koranic duel". Judge Hamoud al-Hitar and his four scholars walk into Sanaa prison in Sanaa, Yemen, armed only with the Koran and throw down the gauntlet, so to speak, to defiant al Queda prisoners. The challenge? "If you can convince us that your ideas are justified by the Koran, then we will join you in your struggle," Hitar tells the militants. "But if we succeed in convincing you of our ideas, then you must agree to renounce violence." The prisoners, driven by ideology and doctrine eagerly agree. When western antiterrorism experts first heard of al Hitars plan they warned that the plan would end in disaster. Now, two years later after the first five prisoners have renounced violence and been released from prison these same western terrorism experts who doubted the experiment are eager to hear how Hitar's "theological dialogues" with captured militants have helped to bring peace to a part of the world that was once considered a failed state like Iraq and Afghanistan. Hitar says, "That since 2002, when the first round of the dialogues ended, there have been no terrorist attacks here,even though many people thought that Yemen would become terror's capital." "Three hundred and sixty four young men have been released after going through the dialogues and none of these have left Yemen to fight anywhere else." "Yemen's strategy has been unconventional certainly, but it has achieved results that we could never have hoped for," says one European diplomat, who did not want to be named. "Yemen has gone from being a potential enemy to becoming an indispensable ally in the war on terror." The prisoner release program is not solely responsible for the absence of terror attacks in Yemen. For years Yemen was synonymous with violent Islamic extremism. It is the ancestral home of Usama bin Laden, has provided two-thirds of the recruits for the Afghan terror camps, was notorious as a center for the kidnapping of foreigners and famous for the bombing of the American warship USS Cole in 2000 that killed 17 sailors. Since then Yemen has undertaken a range of measures to combat terrorism from closing down extreme madrassahs, the militant Islamic schools, deporting foreign militants, and now, Hitar's experimental program. The only thing that Yemen hasn't done is met violence with violence despite pressure from the US. Yemen is quick to point out that the attackers of the USS Cole were tried and put to death, as were the terrorists who carried out attacks on the French oil tanker, the SS Limburg, all received death sentences. Yemen argues that holding and punishing all militants would create only further discontent. Yet despite the apparent success in Yemen, some US diplomats have criticized it for apparently letting Islamic militants off the hook with little guarantee that they won't revert to their old ways once released from prison. No matter where you stand on this issue it does bring up an interesting point. That being that terrorism is an ideology and is taught. The ideas from the Koran are twisted and warped and retaught to disillusioned young men. If you can teach a warped ideology, then I say that with enough time, given an open mind, you can teach sound ideology. The key like anything else is time. The US diplomats are exactly right however in that there is no guarantee that upon release from prison these now supposed reformed militants won't revert right back to their old ways again. Just as there is no guarantee that a murderer released on parole will not kill again. I would only say that in the war on terror we could use all the tools we can get. A few things are true though. When you belittle or torture a prisoner they will do or tell you anything just to get you to stop! Humiliation will piss a prisoner off! Disrespecting a pris[...]

What Happens If You're 54?


Last nights "State of The Union" speech by Mr. Bush was at times, a real tear jerker. The purple stained index fingers, the applause, and the hug, which appeared to be spontaneous, between Safia Taleb al-Suahil, the leader of the Iraqi Women's Political Council and Janet Norwood, the mother of marine Sgt. Byron Norwood, who was killed fighting in Fallujah on November 13, 2004. But, the real tear-jerker for me was as you may well have guessed was Social Security. I heard crying, some screaming, and a great Biblical gnashing of teeth throughout my neighborhood last evening during this part of the presidents speech, most of the gruesome noises coming from my own living room! I had planned on listening intently to this part of the presidents speech because after all, the days are getting shorter, so to speak, and retirement isn't that many years away anymore. I do remember listening, intently, and then I was told he said these words, "Today, more than 45 million Americans receive Social Security benefits, and millions more are nearing retirement. And for them, the system is strong and fiscally strong. I have a message for every American who is 55 or older: Do not let anyone mislead you. For you, the Social Security system will not change in any way." (Then there was a lot of noise after that statement which I was later told was applause.) This is what I think I actually heard the President say, "Today, more than 45 million .... Nearing retirement. And for them, the system is strong and fiscally strong. I have a message for every American who is 55 or older: Do not let anyone mislead you. Blah, blah, blah .... Anyone 54 and younger should now shoot yourself in the head! Do yourself a favor. You haven't got a pot to piss in anyway, so just get it over with!" (Then there was a lot of noise after that statement which I think was the sound of my head exploding.) All morning I have been searching the internet looking for some kind of clarification as to what it means if you are presently 54, which if you haven't guessed by now, this old guy is. Does that mean that you can turn 55 in 2005 and be safe? Do you have to be 55 as of the month of February 2005? Or does it mean that you have to be 55 as of 2004? I like 55 in 2005, sounds like a slogan doesn't it? - "55 in 05!" What the hell does it mean? The only thing I have been able to find so far is a tiny blurb that basically says if you are 54 and under, your social security benefits will have to be cut. There is no mention of how much benefits would be cut, or if and how this fix of the present system would at least have the illusion of some kind of equitableness. Is the cutoff of 54 in place now..., or 54 when and if the reform measures are passed. If the cutoff of 54 is in place now, the government has just "cut the throats" of the largest percentage of baby-boomers on the way to their retirement. Those born between 1951 and 1955. I realize that Social Security was never meant to be a so-called "retirement plan" in and of itself, however; it has figured into how much money has gone into my main retirement accounts and now the government wants to screw with the formula, in effect, "my formula." Most people my age that have money in the stock market for retirement have taken a range of hits the last couple of years, some small and some large, depending on your diversity, knowledge, and involvement in your own accounts, i.e.: moving money around, etc. I have just more or less gotten comfortable again with the stock market after moving retirement money around. If the government wants to now cut Social Security benefits for 54 and younger, even to a small extent, it just throws another wrench into the mix. If it sounds like I am whining, you're damn right. If it was your money, your retirement, and your future, you would be whining also, just wait, their's plenty of time to mess with everyone's money. Right now, I like everyone else, has to take a wait and see attitude until the political rhe[...]

Iraqi Vote: A Beginning I Hope


"Who you voting for?" "Number 421 I think." Sunday, January 30, 2005 will surely go down in both Iraqi history and American history as a great day for both countries. Considering that there were at least 8 suicide bomber attacks, mostly against polling sites, for all intents and purposes the elections were a resounding success. There was death however, with at least 40 people killed along with the 9 suicide bombers across the country. These incidents did nothing apparently to stem the tide of jubilant Iraqis who ventured to the polls on foot to exercise for the first time their legitimate, free right to vote. It was a great first step. Al-Zarqawi, the Jordanian leader of the insurgents in Iraq had promised to light up the country with 400 suicide bombers and failed miserably. I doubt that he will wallow in defeat for long however. He has vowed revenge on the purple fingered, ink stained Iraqis that took part in Sundays election and he unfortunately will find a way to kill again. But for now let the people of Iraq dance and celebrate. I hope they realize that the real work is only just beginning. As I was sitting at the table reading accounts of the elections on Sunday I found myself thinking back to when I sat in high school many centuries ago studying American history. I vaguely remember accounts of the 1st Continental Congress, where in 1774 we first came to think of ourselves as Americans. Lexington and Concord in April of 1775, where those first shots fired opened our new American minds to the idea of independence from Britain and the reality of war to obtain it. When in January of 1776, Thomas Paine had written "Common Sense", it had offered Americans a powerful case for independence and showed that it was winable and that Americans deserved Independence. In May of 1776, the 2nd Continental Congress directed the old colonies to write new Constitutions to replace their original colonial charters; little by little Americans' new commitment to liberty and the idea of freedom were pushing them farther out of the grasp of the British Empire. In June of 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia, introduced to the 2nd Continental Congress three resolutions, the 1st declaring that the colonies "are, and of right ought to be, free and independent states," the 2nd authorizing negotiations with such European powers as France and Spain, and the 3rd called for "articles of confederation and perpetual union." On July 2, 1776, Congress adopted those resolutions and two days later, on July 4, 1776, the 2nd Continental Congress adopted a declaration drafted by Thomas Jefferson, which set forth the Americans' case against King George III of England, and for Independence. As far as I'm concerned, the "Declaration of Independence" is a written masterpiece. To me, the preamble is an indictment against King George of his failure to deal with the Americans in a fair and reasonable manner although given many chances to do so. The preamble was the key to the colonies case against the king. The use of the terms "inalienable rights" and "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" was the basis for the Americans to go to war against the tyrannical king. The preamble also contains the principles on which Americans would build their own constitution, political system, and govern themselves. In November of 1777, Congress sent the Articles of Confederation for ratification. It took almost 4 years for all 13 states to finally ratify the Articles. Finally, on June 21, 1788, New Hampshire became the 9th state needed to ratify the Constitution of the United States of America, thus finally putting it into effect. From the initial meeting of the 1st Continental Congress in 1774 to the final ratification of the Constitution in 1788 it took 14 years to work out, hash out, experiment with, argue about, fight a war over, and fight a rebellion with,etc., before our form of government finally took hold. Even then we were not totally done with wr[...]

The Only Rod Flying Around Here is Escamilla


In yesterdays blog I introduced everyone to a man named Jose Escamilla who for the last ten years has had quite a time for himself supposedly investigating what he has described as some kind of flying alien life form which he named "Rods." He has studied these anomalies for over ten years and if you read yesterdays blog you will see that he has actually obtained little specific information on these creatures. That in itself in the scientific world may or may not be all that unusual depending on the circumstances such as availability of money, or grants, lack of research equipment, and so on. In Mr. Escamillas case there may be the lack of only a few things. He has a research team, such as it is, although I would say that they lack what I would call real research oriented credentials. For a professional videographer he seems to have trouble with or the availability of equipment for his so-called expeditions to study these creatures. In general there are more disturbing questions surrounding this guy and his Rod research than answers, and I'm not the only one asking them. The one thing that Mr. Escamilla doesn't seem to have a problem with, until recently anyway, is obtaining money! Jose may not be much closer in ten years to answering the question of what these creatures are, however; in that time he has shall we say expanded his interests into other areas. First of all, his "Roswell Rods" website has been up and running for a long while. Lately however there appears to be a few glitches with links, all except the donations link that is. His little donation speech is quite moving and there appears to be just a tad bit of anger involved in the writing of it, almost as if the funds are drying up? Now, I wonder why that could be happening? Let us delve a little further into the reputation and Rod research of Mr. Escamilla. Jose is by profession or was, an Entertainer, and a decent video editor. Now that should be worth something. Oh wait, that's right, I forgot about the three very well produced and packaged videos/DVD's that Jose has been selling on his site. They were made by collecting images of these so-called Rods. Some were shot by him as I understand it and some were sent to him and he used these images in his video. I also remember reading in my research about a few people not being too happy about the use of their images and not receiving at the least any credit and at the most any compensation. Hhmm. Then, of course, there were questions. You would figure that after ten years of "research" that Mr. Escamilla would have something other than the amount of info on one pageof paper, but nope. The questions for Jose kept coming. Legitimate questions, especially questions from videographers, like himself and photographers. Rods, it seems were showing up accidentally on film anywhere and everywhere and not everybody was as amazed or as curious as Jose. There were actually people out there who seemed to know what Rods were. However, as we shall see, the more questions and inquiries sent to Jose's website, the more Jose seemed to be avoiding answering his critics. Believe it or not there have been many serious and scientific studies done about what these objects are and as I said before they seem to show up quite a bit on video tape and on certain exposure and shutter speed settings on a still camera. I have gotten this effect on my Canon AE1 35mm SLR with shutter speeds around 1/60sec and 1/30sec when taking pictures of bees and other flying insects. I have provided links to a few of the studies, if you would like to read them. Once you get to a page there are other links on that page you can link to. These studies are much too detailed to even try and summarize in a blog. However, the conclusion of most of these studies, not all, but most seem to be that "Rods" are a videographic artifact that is caused by a flying insect. This photographic illusion is based on the frame capture ra[...]

There's Something Flying Around Up There!


Look! Up in The Sky It's, What The Hell is It? What the hell is this that FOX News caught on their Baghdad camera on April 3, 2004, at about 4:00pm EST during the early going of the Iraqi war? Is it some kind of Iraqi Bathist stealth technology our war planners were caught unaware of secretly sent out to scout the location of our troops? Is it one of the madman, jihadist, millionaire bin Laden's newly built flying bombs caught on its way to crash into and kill hundreds of our troops while they sleep? Or is it something more benign, such as some kind of Iraqi child's flying toy? Or is it some kind of unknown alien flying creature called "Rods" that have been showing up all over the world lately? If you happen to be a man named Jose Escamilla, you should have figured by now that these images are of what he claims to be, as yet an unknown life form called a Rod. Jose has been shooting, editing, directing and producing video for over 20 years. Jose has done work about LA Gang Violence, and a cartoon series called "Donny - The Educational Dinosaur. Jose also performs, arranges and produces music as he has done for Tito Guizar, best known as the "Mexican Troubadour" in 1990. Apparently, all that changed on March 5, 1994 in the town of Midway, NM. On that day his sister had called him and told him to come to the house, and oh by the way, bring your camcorder because there is a UFO zipping around the skies out here. Not one to pass up a good UFO sighting as I have come to learn while researching this guy Jose gets his camera and he is off and running. Later, in his editing bay thinking he is going to edit a tape containing a few UFOs on it Jose is surprised to see that the video camera has picked up more than sixty objects of all shapes and sizes. Jose is amazed. Fourteen days later he witnesses the event that he claims will change his life. Since his first sighting and documentation of these Roswell Rods as they have become known he has appeared on numerous television shows such as The Learning Channel, Geraldo Rivera, Hard Copy, Sightings, and Encounters to name but a few. Jose has also appeared in many UFO related magazines and has his own web site called Roswell Rods. On March 19, 1994 Jose Escamilla caught his first glimpse of what he claims to be a new life form on video at Midway, NM. According to Mr. Escamilla this encounter forever changed his life to the point of a passion to find out just what these flying creatures were. He assembled a team of researchers with various education and backgrounds, some with previous UFO experience, (I should say encounters), some without. Jose has spent ten years filming and studying these creatures while through the years gathering to himself quite a following of interested people, some freely financing his operations. For his ten years of research and filming Jose has produced and sold videos and DVDs containing footage of Rods of all shapes and sizes, some of the video shot by him while some shot by other people from around the globe. If you ask Mr. Escamilla just exactly what his research has discovered about these creatures in ten years he will tell you that: Rods are cylindrical or cigar shaped objects that are not like the typical "cigar" shaped UFOs that have been reported throughout history. They are from four inches to a hundred, (or more), feet in length. Some are thin like spears. Some Rods have what appear to be "appendages" along their torsos resembling Centipedes. They travel at extremely high velocities barely visible with the naked eye. They do exhibit some form of intelligence. They are appearing everywhere. They don't appear to be mechanical or made of metal. They appear to be alive. Recently his research team received footage from Rhode Island of a "Cigar shaped object" that has a Rod zipping through the same sequence. Wow, that's a hell of a lot of information for ten years of[...]

The First Legitimate Iraqi Election, Huh?


In two days Iraqis will go to the polls to freely elect another kind of interim government, hopefully. An election that will elect a 275 seat Iraqi National Assembly which will in turn choose a Presidency Council and then draft the country's first legitimate democratic constitution. Or will it? That seems to be the big question on everybody's mind except for President Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, our newly sworn in Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice, General Abazaid, and a few more of the inner circle neocons that drafted and implemented the plan for Iraq to receive the precious gift of Democracy. In fact, the Washington crew and a majority of congressional republicans appear to be the only ones on God's green earth that seem to think that the outcome of the Iraqi poll on Sunday is in the bag, so to speak. I don't even think that Tony Blair shares the same enthusiasm as does Washington anymore. With elections coming up in England and with the comment made the other day by the British prime minister referring to America needing to get more onboard with the European agenda, it almost seems as if Mr. Blair might be trying to distance himself a little from the Bush neocon view of the world. I wonder if he is secretly hoping that after the elections in Iraq he can find a way to bring the British troops home. That would do well for his election chances. Even before the elections what I feared would happen seems to be happening. The Arab League and the European Union have both come out and warned that if the Sunnis boycott the elections on Sunday that the credibility of the outcome of those elections would be suspect. "The boycott will affect the credibility of the outcome and if the outcome is to be a national assembly that is to draft a constitution, there will be a major problem," Arab League spokesman Hossam Zaki told Reuters on Tuesday, January 25. "You end up having an electoral process that is secretive because of the security situation and which is not comprehensive because of a boycott by a significant component of Iraqi society," Zaki added. Some of the major Sunni groups which include the Association of Muslim Scholars and the Islamic Party are boycotting the election and have said it should be delayed as long as it will be held under an occupying power and in view of the prevailing insecurity. There has been a call by the Arab League for the US backed interim government to hold a conference to promote reconciliation with its opponents to ensure election participation. The US has said right along that this is just another attempt by the Sunnis to halt the election process. The Sunnis know that when the elections are held that the Shite majority will most likely win a majority of seats in the assembly and they will effectively be out of power. Some hope that the insurgents will cause the elections to either be postponed or called off all together for security reasons. European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana has warned that it would be a "catastrophe" if Sunnis do not vote in this month's landmark elections in Iraq. "I don't think that Iraq could be stable if the Sunnis do not participate in the political process," Solana told the foreign affairs committee of the European Parliament. "If there were no Sunni representative, it would be a catastrophe," Agence France-Presse (AFP) quoted Solana as saying Monday. Solana went on to say that at least the Sunnis should take part in drafting the new constitution and the new electoral process if they remained reluctant, saying, "Otherwise, I don't think we will have a stable Iraq if the Sunnis are not part of the process. Every sensitivity in Iraq has to participate in the electoral process." What and who the fuck does this guy think he is! I will admit that I am not a big fan of the war in Iraq. I really don't see what it has to do with 9-11 or the hunt for terrorists. [...]

Was The Inauguration Worth The Cost?


I talked to a friend today for the first time since he had been back from attending President Bush's inauguration festivities and after talking with him at length, to put it mildly, he said for the most part that he was quite disappointed with the whole experience. He had quite a story to tell, mostly about the tight security measures throughout the city of Washington D.C. His words were, "Security was tighter than a fleas ass." My friend was also disappointed that he actually never got to see the President during the parade. "That's really the only god damn reason that I made the trip down there," he said, "What a fuckin' joke, the whole fuckin' thing, a pain in the ass joke." "Every five friggen' minutes, every hundred friggen' feet, someone asking you for a fucking ID. It was ridiculous." To listen to him tell the story was hilarious, well because my friend is a funny guy to begin with and he tells a funny story. I also know that he hates being hassled. All I guess he really accomplished was a couple of days away from work and spending a lot of money for a lousy place to stay and some lousy food - his words. I had another friend that had attended the festivities and not one to put all of my eggs into one basket I decided to give her a call and get her perspective on things. What she told me was much the same, only she said that because it was such a pain getting around that her and her friend had actually left to come back home even before the parade started. She said that it was doubtful that her and her friend would be able to get close enough to see anything. She laughed and said, "I guess that's the price we pay for 9-11 and all the security bullshit." "Yeah," I said, "All the bullshit is right." I'm sure that everybody has a horror story about fending for themselves in order to try and participate in a historical event, a chance to see the president being sworn in from a half mile away or maybe even getting lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time when he walks by during the parade. Unless you happened to be one of the republican elite or the invited elite that's about all that you could have hoped for. Reading the news reports on Saturday, I remember phrases such as, "unprecedented security", the inauguration cost about $40 million, security costs were around $18 million, and Mayor Anthony Williams of D. C. wanted to know how the hell he was going to pay for it and why he had to pay for it when in previous inaugurations the government had picked up the tab for security. Ah, those were the days, huh? Those were the days come to think of it! I hate to say this, but in some small way "terrorism" has accomplished part of what it has set out to do. It has got us all walking around like chickens with our collective heads cut off, looking over our shoulders and paranoid as all hell! Our Republic is an armed camp, with machine pistol toting cops on every corner of Manhattan and Patriot missile batteries setup in fields in our nations capital. Our Democratic ideals are now subject to constitutional debates on how far we can go before some forms of questioning are considered torture, exactly how long you can hold someone in custody without letting them make a phone call or speak to an attorney, what exactly constitutes illegal search and seizure, or do we really need probable cause to kick a door in or is I think I saw someone that looked 'Arabic' waving a copy of the Koran O.K. The American Eagle that Mr. Ashcroft sings, well shall we say waxes poetic, about wouldn't dare fly across America's skies for fear of being shot down by a patriot missile or a patrolling F-16. Most law enforcement people, when asked their opinions of the unprecedented level of inaugural security responded with what you would expect, a typical response summed up by D.C. Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey who said tha[...]

Hook 'em Satan Followup


"Hook 'em Satan, Oops, I mean horns!" There was a little follow up published in that sacred pillar of literary truth, (I just love it when a good pun comes completely by accident), "The Truth Seeker", by a Rixon Stewart, who I believe is one of the editors, which is printed below. It is almost sad to note, that these people actually believe this stuff. Every time that someone, somewhere in the world flashes this horn sign, "hook 'em horns" sign, the Horned Hand, or The Mano Cornuto, they are in fact giving the "Satanic Salute" and in doing so signaling their allegiance to their "horned god", a sign of recognition and allegiance. OKey Dokey! UPDATE Hidden in Plain Sight Rixon Stewart - Friday January 21, 2005 Some dispute the notion that the hand signals pictured here are really satanic gestures, claiming instead that they are flaunted as signals of support by University of Texas Longhorns fans. But so many prominent individuals have been pictured making the "hook 'em horns" sign that one really has to ask: is it a coincidence that George Bush, his wife and daughters, plus Bill Clinton and Al Gore to name but a few who have been photographed making the gesture, are all such big fans of the University of Texas Longhorns? Not to mention the fact that Italy’s Berlusconi and Prince William of England have also been pictured making the same gesture. Are they also big fans of the University of Texas Longhorns? Or is something else going on? Every criminal has an alibi, genuine or otherwise, and there is a cover story for every crime. Like the ‘All Seeing Eye’ on the dollar bill that is an ancient Masonic symbol, the ‘Satanic Salute’ has long documented association with the darker arts. Like the 'All Seeing Eye', it's also hidden in plain sight, concealed behind mundane explanations so that only those few initiated into darker secrets understand its real significance. While the broad mass of the populace, the so-called ‘useless eaters’, continue to believe that it is really a Texas Longhorns "hook 'em horns" salute, not a signal of allegiance to satanic forces. Now this is where I draw the line. Stewart Little and Spiderman, two American icons associated with Satanic Forces. The Horror! Where will it end? The Green Hornet? Batman? Superman? Oh My GOD! The Horror! I think these guys are in definite need of a screw tightening. I'm sorry, maybe I'm one of the "useless eaters" as they would have you believe, that everyone who doesn't believe their story is. This whole scenario just smacks of another wild offtake of another biblical "Revelation" story in a real twisted sense. The world is full of them and these guys are no different. I think that I'll stick to what Jesus said in the Gospels, not what somebody's interpretation of signs might be or how many gods their are in heaven or whether or not flashing some sign is satanic or not. The Devil is real all right, but this sign is not used exclusively as a symbol as an allegiance to him. I'm sorry boys, but you're wrong. Stop being so paranoid. Sometimes it's just rock n' roll and I like it! [...]

Whom Does Bush Serve? Mean God, Good God, or Satan?


Hello Satan ! Not hi dad, Mr. Bush Sr., but apparently hi dad Mr. Satan Sr. is what Michael A. Hoffman II claims is taking place in this photo of President Bush during his inauguration ceremony on Thursday. I've always thought that this sign meant "hook em' horns", having to do with the University of Texas football team. Boy, was I wrong. I had no idea that anybody who flashes this sign, according to Hoffman, is embroiled in a satanic conspiracy so heinous that the rest of us so-called "useless eaters" are so ignorantly brainwashed that we refuse to see any meaning in the use of this symbol other than the Texas Longhorns, "hook em' horns" sign, and not what it really is, a signal of allegiance to satanic forces. Brazen Presidential Satanism like this is a clear indicator that the System believes it has the situation so locked down that it can reveal it's true nature, symbolically, from time to time, in public, again according to Hoffman, who associates the System with a shadowy and mysterious group of media and industrial tycoons, European royalty and banking dynasties referred to as the "Illuminati." According to Hoffman, our conservative, born-again Christian president does not serve the people of the country he took an oath to protect and defend. Bush may not even serve the same God that most Christians worship or may not worship any God at all, but an entirely different being, one usually depicted in folklore as having horns on his head. Hoffman states that Bush wasn't even elected by the people, but appointed by this group, like his counterpart across the pond, Tony Blair, in order to serve the interests of the Illuminati. The interests of this clandestine group of the mega rich are what else, the planet, which Hoffman claims they effectively own. The Illuminati are not united by any high ideals, or any ethnic bond, but simple self-interest, money, and that means that the individual members don't always see eye to eye. The one pre-eminent faction among the group is supposedly the Rothschild banking dynasty, (and I was hoping it was the wine guys), shit! The Rothschilds, aside from being closely connected to European royalty, are also rumored to be on intimate terms with Lucifer. Thus, the Illuminati are allegedly "diabolically" inspired with their power resting on the ignorance of the masses. Reinforced and enhanced with gifts given by Lucifer -- and in words derived from his name -- the group uses illusion and delusion through the media, to obfuscate and conceal their true agenda from the masses, which of course, leaves the masses incapable of independent thought. Thus, says Mr. Hoffman, the Illuminati owe their power to Lucifer and he in turn uses them to further his hold over humanity. Speaking of locked down, I wonder if this guy Hoffman needs to be locked up in a nice padded room somewhere, with a big window to look out of onto some nice shrubbery! I've known that Mr. Bush has a very diverse fan base, but this almost takes the cake so to speak. Hi Uncle Satan, I See You! As you can see from the above picture, like father, like daughter and according to Hoffman both Bush daughters, as well as the first lady, you know Bill Clinton is, Tony Blair, Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi, Prince William, why not, his brother's a Nazi, Al Gore, and even Dan Qayle are all serving the dark forces, and I might add, serving these forces willingly! That's it, I quit and I'm moving to Jamaica except that the whole island of Jamaica is supposedly in the devils front pocket. Is there no place safe on earth from this evil menace? I think I mean Mr. Hoffman in this case. I can't help it, something isn't right with this whole scenario or this guy. I've heard some pretty interesting and[...]

It is After All, The President's Day!


Today, as we all know is the second inauguration of President George Walker Bush. It is a day of celebration, a day of solemn oath taking and reflection, a day of fashion - who's wearing what, a day of parades, a day of inaugural balls, parties and festivities, a day of protest, a day to stop for a moment and remember our military around the world, thanking them for their sacrifice, a day to thank our military families for their sacrifices, a day for spending $40 million (I could have got George a deal down at Barney's for $26.95 which includes the buffet plate), and for me, a day for work. It is also a day for Democrats to lock themselves in closets without any form of modern communication and to dream about the way things might have been. A day to get stinking drunk and later on under the depressing effects of alcohol meet up with other Democrats at your favorite watering holes to reminisce about just having a few more votes in Ohio, or if only this or if only that and the way that it could have been. Blah, blah, blah, pass the bullets. Oh well, in four years everybody gets to do it all over again. I've really never understood the political passion machine that seems to overtake some involved in managing the campaigns of, or even getting out and passionately campaigning for a candidate. It all seems rather funny to me. I have friends that are still upset over John Kerry not winning the presidency, like it's some kind of megabucks lottery prize, in fact if they won the lottery my friends would most likely be happy, but not as happy as they would be if John Kerry was president. I say, I like you John, but show me the money! I had a few minutes today to listen to some of Bush's speech he gave after taking the oath of office for the second time. From what I was told, the words "freedom" and "liberty" or derivations thereof were said something like fourty-nine times. That in itself isn't bad, however; I heard the same philosophy about spreading freedom, liberty and democracy around the world that I heard four years ago, and all through his first term in office. Oh crap, I immediately thought, it's going to be a long day. Mr. Bush made a pledge to spread freedom "to the darkest corners of the world" and "show the meaning and promise of liberty." He also said, "There is only one force of history that can break the reign of hatred and resentment, and expose the pretensions of tyrants, and reward the hopes of the decent and tolerant, and that is the force of human freedom." Oh crap, it is going to be a long day! On the surface, nice words, but I can't help wondering what he actually means by those words. I have said before that I am freedoms biggest fan, however; I'm not sure how much of a right our country has of saying to a sovereign country, either change your ways or we will change your government and your ways for you. Mr. Bush did say that spreading freedom didn't necessarily entail the use of force all of the time. His exact words were, "We will encourage reform in other governments by making clear that success in our relations will require the decent treatment of their own people. America's belief in human dignity will guide our policies, yet rights must be more than the grudging concessions of dictators; they are secured by free dissent and the participation of the governed." Oh crap, it's going to be a really long day! Doesn't that really mean, "It's our way or the highway?" I don't know,think about it, if I am a foreign dictator or the king of a Muslim country right now I'm thinking, here he goes again that cowboy, nutjob, and his Christian holier than though bullshit. I wonder exactly what and where Mr. Bush draws the line in terms of what his criteria is for say the king of some country being a good guy to his peopl[...]

Civil War in Iraq? Could it Happen? At What Cost?


Civil war in Iraq. Is it a possibility? Since day one of our countries little excursion into that country to look for weapons of mass destruction, no wait, to enforce the UN resolutions, no wait, to oust Saddam, no wait, to enforce the resolutions, oust Saddam, and kind of look for weapons, no wait to bring the Iraqis democracy, no wait, to inform the Iraqis that they are better off without Saddam, to enforce the UN resolutions, to oust Saddam, and to bring democracy, and if we find any weapons of mass destruction we can then say we told you so! Ya, that's the ticket. I suppose we could go on about this all day with the end result of somebody a little right of center leaving me a comment about me being some kind of "left-wing liberal, blue-state, God-hating, fag-loving jerkoff " and how I don't understand the world, or George Bush, and his vision for the world. I, after reading the comment and feigning indescribable mental anguish would write a comment back to that person most likely describing them as some kind of "narrow minded, right-wing conservative, red-state, gun-toting, anti-gay jerkoff." Blah, blah, blah! You get the picture. I've seen it and read it all over some of these blog sites. Some of the comment sections are pretty funny and are actually better written than the blogs. Unfortunately, that's not why I have called you all together today. We could all argue until the world ends, I'm sure, about whether or not it was the right or the wrong thing to do sending troops into Iraq. I don't think there are too many people on earth that would argue the Iraqis are better off without Saddam. I am however, beginning to have doubts about the price we as a nation, and we as a people are paying now, and the price that we and our children will pay in the future. Please do not be so naive as to think that the country will not pay a price for the fight against terrorism. It may be financial, military, social, economic, or God forbid a disaster in the form of another horrendous attack, which would encompass all of the aforementioned, but we will pay a price. As we have all seen on the television news, especially cable news, the closer we get to the elections in Iraq the more the frequency of insurgent attacks escalates and the stronger these attacks become. The attacks have also become more widespread of late, and instead of one or two per day, you now have up to five or six per day. This takes some planning. Recently, General John Abazaid, the commander of U.S. Central Command stated that he thought between actual fighters and active supporters of the insurgency that there were an estimated 20,000 of them. He said that a couple of days ago. That is quite a difference from last November when he thought the number was more like 5,000. General Muhammed Abdullah al-Shahwani, the director of Iraqis new Intelligence Service said that the number of insurgents was more likely near 30,000. We keep hearing that we have killed thousands of terrorists and insurgents. If you believe all of the numbers thrown around, al Queda should be hanging on by a thread and the number of insurgents in Iraq should be diminishing, not increasing. What I am sure of is that every day something in Iraq blows up, somebody else gets killed, another soldier, another insurgent, or another civilian, another coalition soldier gets killed, another wife becomes a widow, another child becomes fatherless or motherless, another Muslim martyr is created, and another job opening is created for a young, poor, out of work, under-educated, America hating Arab teenager or young man. There doesn't seem to be any shortage of them. There has been some talk lately of some kind of time-table for the withdrawal of American troops to begin sometime af[...]

Security: Up,Down,Around,Whad'ya Mean Pay For It?


Tom Ridge, the countries outgoing Director of Homeland Security, announced last week at a news conference that there was no evidence of a plot to disrupt the upcoming inauguration of President George Bush. This is a slightly different tune than the one Homeland Security was singing beginning in March of 2004 and continuing throughout the summer, into the election in November. In April of 2004 Mr. Ridge announced that al Queda terrorists might be planning to strike during this week's presidential inauguration festivities with some festivities of their own. The inaugural warning was part of the same warning that was sounded throughout 2004 by U.S. officials that terrorists would seek to launch attacks both during and after the presidential election in November. These warnings which began shortly after the Madrid train bombings in Spain which were in March of 2004 stated that the threat was targeted at the entire election process, meaning from the political conventions, through the elections, the electoral college voting and into the inauguration. Most in federal, state and local homeland security agencies focused on the actual "election day" as being the prime day and target for terrorist attacks. The intelligence for these warnings was based upon, what else, chatter! Besides, following the Madrid attacks, many thought that the next logical step would be to attack or somehow disrupt the elections in the U.S. Intelligence "chatter" comprises information from many sources, such as intercepted phone calls, computer and cell phone e-mail exchanges, informers, both new and old, radio and two-way communications, and tips that come into the various law enforcement agencies by phone, e-mail, and by letter. Putting all of this chatter together and piecing it together into some kind of actionable intelligence is not an exact science. There is no no mathematical algorithm that allows you to come to some kind of formulated plan. Most of the time when you are providing security for an event, and you have received some kind of chatter concerning that event, or even just an increase in the general flow of chatter leading up to the time of an event you have to err on the side of caution, spend the money, try and think of everything, and do your best to protect everybody and everything. The increased security concerns over the summer of 2004 eventually led to raising the terror warning levels for financial institutions in New York, New Jersey, and Washington. The reasons for the increased security concerns and the raising of alert levels for these three key areas was based upon intelligence gleaned from computer files that were seized during anti-terrorist raids in Pakistan, and a suppossed key CIA informer. These files indicated that al Queda operatives were casing financial institutions in the cities of New York, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C. The only problems with all of this intelligence is that it was mostly bogus. The casing files were all compiled before 2001, specifically the 2001 attacks, while other information contained on the computer disk had come straight off of the internet. Oh yeah, one other thing. The key CIA informer turned out to be lying through his teeth! You just can't trust any of those al Queda informers anymore. What the hell is the world coming too? As it turns out, the authorities investigated all of this fiasco and it wasn't a total bust. The investigation led to the arrests of some suspected terrorists in England and come to find out now analysts believe that some of the data on the disks actually pertained to an attack planned for London's Heathrow Airport rather than the financial districts of the above named U.S. cities. That's a few miles off, but as I [...]

Bye Bye Private Graner!


I suppose one could say that Army Spc. Charles Graner had a bad weekend. As I'm sure we have all heard by now, "the ringleader" got popped for ten years on Saturday which has, of course, elicited mixed reactions from Iraqis and Americans. I'm not really sure from where I sit that a lot of Americans really care one way or the other. Some of course do and feel that justice has been served, and then you always have the few that say hang em'. This blog probably isn't for them. Most of my friends that have never been in the military just kind of shrug their shoulders, while my friends that have been in, or are presently in the military shake their heads and the usual thought is that the kid and his compatriots were all really some kind of dumbasses, because they got caught. They got caught doing something that, granted may have been over the line, but I'll bet you that they thought they had permission and justification for doing so. The Iraqis, or some of them anyway don't think that the punishment is enough. I can't say that I blame them. I have somewhat mixed emotions on the whole business. My reasons are simple enough. I don't think that the military punished the correct, or all of the correct people. How many have noticed the absence of officers in all of these court martial proceedings? If you answered, 1.) I did, 2.) Huh, 3.) Oh yeah, or 4.) What officers, and I'll even throw in scratching your head as No. 5, then you win. One of the very first things that you come to understand about the military is the concept of "CYA", or Cover Your Ass, especially if you are of the enlisted ranks and on the lower end of that enlisted rank spectrum. You quickly learn that shit rolls down hill and when it's a bad day on the farm you do not want to be walking around looking like a poor excuse for a shit receptacle! First of all, the army wants us to believe that this little merry band of sadistic goofballs, all of who happened to be enlisted personnel, took it upon themselves, like it was an exercise for extra college credits or something, to torture Iraqi prisoners in the hopes of getting the big piece of missing intelligence information that would stop some towel wearing doo-dahs from driving a bus full of explosives into Starbucks in downtown L.A. Bullshit! Pardon my French. Look at these people! Really look at these people. I'm sorry to have to say this, but between them they would need directions to make a ham sandwich. How do I know this you may ask? Because anyone who takes pictures of themselves in the act of torturing or humiliating prisoners, Iraqi or otherwise, whether posted or not, for private viewing or not, has not a brain cell in their heads! Secondly, there isn't an enlisted person in the entire universe that is going to institute those kinds of prisoner tactics without at least thinking that his or her ass was covered by an officer and I mean probably above a captain. These guards made the mistake of actually believing anything that "military intelligence" told them, and secondly trusting the military intelligence officers word. I don't know too many officers that would screw up their career over being implicated in the beating of prisoners, regardless of whether they were hard-core al Queda or part of the first string, Iraqi Tasty Freeze, Ice Cream Company. It's just not going to happen, as I believe the course of events has played out and shown. Not one officer has come forward and three or four of the ones that were implicated have taken the military equivalent of the fifth. Somewhere behind the scenes, quietly, a few of the lower ranking officers will be reprimanded and for all intents and purposes any thoughts of a career in the mili[...]

Teddy Bears, Emphasizing My Point, & Racist Comments


Kudos to the Vermont Teddy Bear Company for not backing down from a few hurt feelings from mental health advocates. It's not an issue on par with Prince Harry, but I think again that it emphasizes my opinion that people are just too thin skinned and political correctness is getting out of hand. Link:

Now for something completely different. Before I start and somebody accuses me of being too sensitive, no I don't think I am. There is a marked difference in not agreeing with someone's opinion and intelligently saying so, it is quite another to cross the line. This kid has crossed that line.

I have learned in my relatively short time blogging that usually it is good policy not to respond to comments left by idiots. I'm not referring to comments left by people who disagree with your opinions as long as the comments left contain at least a modicum of intelligence and reasonableness. I refer more to, well "assholes" who hiding behind their PC or laptop leave stupid, unintelligent, and in the case I am writing about "racist" accusations. Some idiot who shall remain nameless left me a comment on a post that I wrote about Prince Harry wearing a German uniform to a party. My point and my opinion still remains that the press and I think most people are making too much out of this. Everybody has an opinion, but I know of no one that has actually asked Harry why he wore the uniform and I don't recall Harry saying anything to the press as to why he wore the uniform. Apparently, there are thousands of people out there with crystal balls that have somehow divined his reasons for wearing the costume, and have shared their opinions with the world. Now, living in a free country, I think, you are more than allowed to do that, however; to insinuate or pass judgment about something or on somebody because you happen to be a little more sensitive on an issue than someone else is just unacceptable. Being curious I checked out the comment senders blog and after perusing this kids website I now see why his brain works as it does. It still however, boggles my mind how anybody but an asshole could, from a few words typed on a computer blog, form an opinion, no make a judgment that is so revolting and disgusting that it just, well "pisses me the f... off!.' It takes a hell of a lot to piss me off, but insinuating that I am a racist without knowing me, never having met me, and knowing nothing about me is in itself racist. This person is damn lucky to be hiding behind a computer screen because this person would not say that to my face, at least not without getting knocked on his judgmental ass. And if and when this person tried to get up in a couple of days I'd be there to knock you on your ass again until you got the point. What's the point? You sir, are an asshole! Don't ever read my blog again because I swear if I ever see your IP come up on there..... Just don't!

To the rest of the blogging community I apologize if I have offended anyone by using my blog as my personal soapbox of retaliation, but I just could not let this go. This is just another, no a perfect example of one of the points I was attempting to make in the referenced blog. It's just an opinion, nothing more, nothing less. You don't have to agree with it, but don't be a moron about it either. Enough said.

Prince Harry Does it Again? So What!


So, Prince Harry showed up at the 22nd birthday party of Harry Meade, who is the son of Richard Meade, the Olympic gold medal-winning horseman, wearing the uniform of a German wehmacht soldier. Young Mr. Meade you may or may not remember was one of the lads that interrupted Tony Blair while Blair gave a speech to the Labour Party conference. Harry decided to show up at his friends costume party in the uniform of Rommel's Desert Afrika Corp, famous from World War II. The Afrika Corp drove the allies nuts in the early going of WWII and most students of history and warfare would say that Rommel was at least a brilliant general if not a genius for the tank tactics that he deployed. So What! And I mean so what that Harry showed up at a costume party wearing what the press and most people are calling, "a Nazi uniform." Actually, the uniform of Rommel's men was a standard issue desert uniform issued to the "Wehmacht", which was the standard German army. Most of the soldiers in the Wehmacht weren't even in the Nazi Party. They were regular people that either enlisted or were drafted. If the press is going to make an issue out of this, then I think they should keep the focus on the armband that Harry wore not the whole uniform. Wearing such an armband may have been in bad taste. I refer to the "swastika" armband that adorned Harry's left sleeve. I am all for freedom of speech, I fought for it, however; to me anyway it seems that there is and has been a rather disturbing trend emanating throughout the press. This trend is called in my language, "passing judgment." I always thought that the press was supposed to, in theory anyway, report the facts of news and these facts should at least be backed up by at least one reputable source. Having reported these facts, it was then up to the reader or listener of the reported news to make up his or her mind on the reported issue or subject. Apparently, not anymore. Nowadays, it seems that anything goes. Unnamed sources, a friend of a friend, someone on the white house staff, some kind of pundit, anyone with an opinion as long as you don't actually have to name the source, even some guy with a camera at a birthday party. The press has this uncanny ability to make or break a persons reputation by how much of an issue they make out of something. This is how I feel about Harry's little "faux pas." Granted, Harry should probably have given his choice of costume a little more thought, but the way that the press is reporting it, and the way that people from Jewish groups, former Royal family workers, and just about anybody else with a reasonable or half-assed opinion is ridiculous! You would think this kid murdered somebody or worse, is a devout "skinhead." Come on people, get a grip! Political correctness, which I might add, I think is asinine is getting way out of hand. I would really like to know what 'magic mirror' or 'crystal ball' all of these press people, royal pundits, and even Jewish human rights organizations are getting their insights from into what was in this kids head, as to why he wore this get up. He went to a costume party. That's all I think he did. I don't think that he was trying to offend anyone, or make a political statement - "hey queenie, look at me, I'm a bloody freakin' skinhead!." From what I have read, generally speaking it sounds to me like, 1.) his dad is never around much, 2.) Harry doesn't sound like he's the brightest bulb on the billboard, 3.) he likes to party and get drunk, 4.) he doesn't seem to give a shit who he is or how he is supposed to act - he's second fiddle anyway to his brother, which I might add was at the same p[...]

Everyone Jump on The Gloom and Doom Wagon!


Most of the news coming out of south Asia over the last two and one-half weeks, since the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and subsequent devastating tsunami swept the area, destroying everything in its path, has been bad. The death toll has reached almost 154,000. There is some sign of recovery, however small and insignificant it may seem to some, to others it is a sign that life is beginning to return to a semblance of normalcy. However, even these signs and messages of recovery are punctuated by more scientific warnings of gloom and doom. To start off, a little science brought to you by our friends at 'The Times of India.' Yes folks, the next time you're in Bangalore or New Dehli, and looking for that new car, remember "The Times of India." Sorry, a little humor, aarrrggghhhh!!!!! One word about linking to some of these foreign newspapers. I try whenever possible to link stories to newspapers in the area whenever possible, however I have no idea what kind of web setup or how much space that they have for links. Some of the smaller papers like the "Phuket Gazette" are a nightmare. As soon as you link to them, it seems that they change the link. Please bear with me. The news, science and information contained in this blog is accurate and true to the best of my ability to research it and write it. Thanks. Where was I? According to the "Times of India" the energy released by the earthquake off the coast of Indonesia was 2 exajoules, or 2 x 1018 joules of energy. What's a joule? Besides being an extremely large number it so happens to be enough energy to boil 1,000 litres of water for each person on earth. That's a lot of 3 minute eggs! It's also the energy equivalent of the production of 940,000 barrels of oil every day for a whole year, or more then 5 times the electricity consumed in Norway in 1998. What would we do without "The Times of India"? Scientists from the (CIS), Consortium of Indian Scientists are "cautioning" that the coasts of Mumbai and Orissa could be hit by another tsunami in the near future. They base this caution on a map which uses seismic data from "various sources including the World Meteorological Department. The Consortium is cautioning of a possible tsunami due to undersea earthquakes in the south Asia region. PD Bhatnagar, who is the Conveyor and Secretary General of the CIS stated, "We are not predicting, but cautioning the government as there are 200 inter-dependent factors involved in the construction of this map. This same map also shows a milder version of some kind of tsunami in the Arabian sea region. The CIS warned that proper disaster management should be in place to tackle the potential threat. The CIS also advocated that coastal areas of India could be protected from tsunami disasters by the proper use of "Rock Geometry and Tree Geometry". (*Writers note: What the hell are these people talking about? I think they have rocks and trees in their collective heads.) Seemingly, we are a world of reactionaries. It usually takes a disaster of the magnitude seen in south Asia before full scale efforts begin in developing a system of warning, in this case a tsunami warning system for the Indian Ocean. For weeks and even months afterwards we, as a species try and come to some kind of an answer as to why this event has occurred. We blame God, aliens, the nuclear bombs tests done in the late forties and fifties, even ourselves as sinners, as if we are directly linked to a creator that destroys 150,000 innocent people because of a couple of thousand bikini wearing infidels! Get a grip! Besides, in the Bible that I read God was ready to make a dea[...]

Tsunami Update From South Asia


A us relief helicopter has crashed with ten people on board near the Banda Aceh airport on Monday, Indonesia time. The chopper was on a tsunami related relief operation when it went down. There are no reports yet of deaths or injuries. More aftershocks struck Indonesia on Monday, including a magnitude 6.2 earthquake that struck off the northern coast of Sumatra Island. The quake was centered about 40 miles southwest of Banda Aceh. No new injuries or damage was reported from the quake. I don't see how any more damage could be inflicted by anything. I'm not trying to be funny, I'm just stating a fact. Since Friday, at least fourteen aftershocks have rattled the northern tip of the island of Sumatra. Two of the largest ones were felt in the provincial capital of Banda Aceh. Two weeks after the magnitude 9.0 struck the area, the Earth is still vibrating, like a bell. According to the Australian National University the reverberations were similar in form to the ringing of a bell, but without the sound. The reverberations, or oscillations are slowly fading, but are still above normal levels. Normal oscillation between 20 and 30 centimeters of motion is typically generated throughout the earth by the interaction of gravity between the Earth, Sun, and Moon. At the present time, the oscillation level is about a millimeter of vertical motion. The earthquake may also have permanently accelerated the Earth's rotation, thus shortening the days by a fraction of a second. U.S. Scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California have theorized that the earthquake caused the mass of the earth to actually shift, or move towards the Earth's center, and this in turn caused the earth to spin faster, with the effect of shortening the days by about three microseconds. The quake also caused the Earth to tilt another 2.5 centimeters on its axis, and permanently alter the geography of Asia by moving some of the smaller islands near the epicenter of the quake as much as 20 meters. Over the weekend some concern was being expressed by the major countries involved in the tsunami relief effort about the safety of aid workers, especially foreign military personnel. Australia, and Canada are expressing concern that their aid workers may get caught in a crossfire between the Indonesian army and the rebel movement (GAM), Free Aceh Movement. This group has been fighting the Indonesian government in a low-level type war, for an independent homeland in Aceh province, for more than twenty years. Banda Aceh is the provincial capital of Aceh and is presently the center for relief efforts in the northern part of Sumatra Island. Shortly after the earthquake, which also struck and affected some rebel strongholds, leaders of the GAM proclaimed a temporary cease-fire, stating that no harm would come to any foreign military, foreign aid workers, or Christians as long as they were in the country providing relief to the victims of the Dec. 26 tsunami. The extremist group, Laskar Mujahidin, which has ties to al Queda also operates in the area and has set up an aid camp of their own in the province. They have also said that they are in the province to help and will not target foreigners, although safety concerns are still running high. The governments of Australia and Canada expressed concern amid reports over the weekend from the Indonesian military that separatist rebels were infiltrating refugee camps is Aceh province. The governments of both countries are concerned about their aid workers getting inadvertently caught in between exchanges of gunfire between Indonesian troops[...]

From The Other Side of The World.


What is it that they say? Don't change horses in midstream, or something like that. So, I will not. I've been writing a lot of posts about the south Asian tsunami. The information is not that hard to come by. For the most part I have been lucky enough to have traveled extensively in that part of the world, so it's familiar. I have links to a lot of the newspapers in the region, and I have friends there who I stayed in contact with. I also have a background in geology which helps in understanding earthquakes and tsunamis, although I do not claim to be an expert on the subjects by any stretch of the imagination. But, as someone once told me, "When you've got something, go with it." I have and I will continue. I'll stay with the story because it's of great interest to me, and I do not believe that any of us, including myself, have yet to fully grasp the destruction wrought by the confluence of these back to back natural events. Firstly, despite all of the wonderful reporting by the cable news stations, all is not well. Not for our and other countries lack or want of trying. As I'm sure by now we all know, we in America are "angels of mercy", "wonderful people", "generous to a fault", and every other descriptive adjective and sentence that the news writers can sling together and still make sense. I realize that we, our nation, are generally not looked favorably upon in many parts of the world, including south Asia. Indonesia is the largest Muslim majority populated country in the world, and the 9-11 terrorists had a meeting there before they attacked our country. However, one gripe that I do have, with one cable news station in particular that shall go unnamed, FOX News, is driving me up a wall. With almost every single interview they go out of their way to tell the guest that we are a great and generous country or ask the guest in some way their opinion of how our country is so generous, not the great Satan as portrayed by many around the world, but the saving angel of the world. Please, get a grip and cut it. What, did you people get a memo or something telling you to push America. My God, do your charity quietly and in silence! Nothing that any cable news station says is going to change any Muslim nation or any individual Muslims opinion about us. In the Muslim world actions speak louder than words. Maybe, you would do better to read the Koran. Just as an example of what we are up against, this is a link to a piece from the Asia Times Online, which I believe was written by one of us, an American. On the other hand there is also good press. Enough ranting about cable news. While we are getting mostly good reports that relief efforts are progressing, and for the most part going smoothly, they are occasionally dotted with the horrors of, and the evils that always accompany this type of regional disaster. I thought that taking a look at what the other side of the world is saying might be good for perspective. I know the American media means well, but I really do believe that they are stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to reporting items that are too bleak or might not put the ole' American happy face on things. I thought that some people might first find this extensive picture gallery interesting. Brought to you courtesy of our friends at the Phuket Gazette. It has a pile of pictures, both before and after the tsunami. The following link is to the front page of today's Phuket Gazette containing a slew of articles concerning the tsunami, and what items are still needed. Thailand seems to be p[...]

No Mercy For These Slugs of Humanity


It is inevitable when disaster strikes that along with the good and generous giving people come the scammers, rip-off artists, and the worst of what humanity has to offer. This slime of life I refer to are those that prey on the helpless, the homeless, and the familyless children of the world or in this case the children of the south Asian tsunami disaster. I'm sure that we have all heard or read the reports of children being kidnapped to be sold into forced labor or sexual slavery. The reports of heightened abuse against women, as well as the rape and gang-rapes that have happened within the refugee camps themselves. There is no excuse for this. There is no excuse for this kind of behavior! There is no excuse for allowing this kind of behavior to happen or allowing an atmosphere for this type of behavior to exist! I realize that governments and government agencies are taxed, beyond measure in some cases, however; children being kidnapped and sold into slavery is not a new problem in countries like Sri Lanka, and Indonesia. Even Thailand has had this problem in the past. This is something that should have been looked into at the beginning as they were setting up food and medical help. Children account for about a third of the dead and displaced. Agencies such as UNICEF and the UN have said they have been aware of the problem since the tsunami happened, and just today there have been reports of guards being put in and around the refugee centers. I'm sorry, but this should have been anticipated a week ago. At first, the Indonesian government didn't even want outside help. This is not a time for pride. It is always the helpless that get preyed upon, and unfortunately in this case the most vulnerable are the children. In some of these countries orphans aren't even looked at as being important in the society anymore and are left to fend for themselves. It is a very different way of life than ours. I believe that if the governments of the affected countries need help to protect these little ones that they should swallow their pride and ask for the help. I'm positive that there would be no shortage of volunteers, military or otherwise. As far as the people that are committing these crimes are concerned I tend to follow what Jesus told his disciples, "Whoa, to anyone that would hurt any such as these little ones in my name, for it would be better for them to tie a millstone around their neck and throw themselves into the sea." I, personally would have no trouble killing any of these bastards where they stand! I certainly hope that the unfortunate children of this disaster are protected to the fullest, and quickly! I also hope that the perpetrators that prey on these children are hunted down and jailed or if they even put up a squeal, kill them. They won't live to hurt any other children. I do not say this lightly, but where children are concerned it pisses me off no end that someone would hurt one. I used to see that shit in Vietnam, after the medics would inoculate the kids in a village, the NVA would come in and cut their arms off and throw them in a pile as a message to all the other villages for them not to have their kids inoculated by the Americans. And they wondered why I would want to hunt those fuckers down and kill every last one of them! Ridiculous! It isn't the same, but it is. It's the same kind of evil, and the only way to stop it is to kill it, or protect the children from it, or both. Just do something! This is like the one time that I wish someone, somewhere, in Thailand [...]

Thailand Fires Top Forecaster Over Tsunami


Last Friday, December 31, 2004, I wrote a piece on the south Asian tsunami, and in that piece I hinted that there were many rumors floating around why, the Thai government especially did not issue a tsunami warning for the country's southwestern coast. The major rumor was because of the tourist industry. Back in 1998 the Thai government had issued a possible tsunami warning because of an earthquake off the coast of Papua, New Guinea, but one never materialized. There were complaints from the Thai tourist board that this had hurt the tourist industry somehow. That in itself amazes me, because I would think that a huge pile of people being swept away by a tidal wave would tend to hurt tourism more! The whole situation sounded to me like what we used to call in the military, a giant "cluster fuck", and you just knew that heads were going to roll, especially since the grandson of the Thai King Bhumibol Adulyade was killed during the onslaught of the waves. On Monday, Jan 3, 2005, Asian officials finally admitted that they had failed to issue a "broad public warning" immediately following the huge undersea earthquake. If they had, the warning, no doubt could have saved countless lives throughout the region affected by tsunamis. Of course whenever governments admit any kind of culpability in anything they usually follow it up with a but, and these same Asian governments insisted that they did not know the true nature of the threat because there was no international system, (when in doubt blame it on the international community), in place to track tidal waves in the Indian Ocean, that these systems are very expensive, and they can't afford to buy the sophisticated equipment necessary to build one. Well, I wonder how much value they put on human life now? Apparently, it must be cheaper to clean up all of the dead bodies. A couple of dump trucks and a couple of bulldozers, yeah, that's the ticket! I think common sense would've dictated with a 9.0 magnitude quake in that region, especially to a geologist, that there was about a 95% chance of a tsunami developing after this earthquake. There's your sophisticated equipment, one person at about $55,000 a year. There was nothing anyone could do about Indonesia. The were swamped within minutes, but the rest of the region would have benefited from a warning. Thailand had about an hour, and every place else had sufficient time. Budi Waluyo, who is an official with the Indonesian Meteorology and Geophysics Agency was taking the government position by saying, "Unfortunately, we have no equipment here that can warn about tsunamis." "The instruments are very expensive and we don't have money to buy them." However, Thammasarote Smith, who is a former senior forecaster at Thailand's Meteorological Department apparently disagrees. He said that governments could have done much more to warn people about the danger. Thammasarote told the Bangkok Post newspaper that the government had up to an hour to warn people, but failed to do so saying, "It is true that an earthquake is unpredictable, but a tsunami, which occurs after an earthquake, is predictable." The Thai Meteorological Department said that it had sent out warnings through radio and television from 9am on Sunday about a possible undertow along the southwest coast of Thailand, but the first waves had already hit by the time those ineffective warnings were given. Three hours later, a web site warning went up, but by then it was all over and people were already dead. The depar[...]

12/26/2004: Some Science and Facts


I have been coming across some interesting facts about the Dec. 26, 2004 earthquake and tsunami in and around Indonesia. I saw the President today standing with his father and Bill Clinton, and he made a statement about the damage being almost unimaginable. He's right. Everyone knows the numbers of dead and missing. We are reminded and updated at least every half hour on the cable news stations. Just thinking of this tragedy in terms of those numbers is bad enough, however I have also been interested in the science underneath this event. Listed below are some facts and figures that may help people look at this disaster from another angle, and realize that this event was truly a spectacular one, geologically speaking. I studied earthquakes for a few years way back when in grad school, and they have always fascinated me. I have actually been in a couple of good size ones, and have seen first hand how people's whole lives can be wiped out in about 12 to 15 seconds. They are just one of those natural events that are truly frightening, yet at the same time utterly exciting and fascinating. I cannot really explain it. It's the same way that I feel now about having spent time in Vietnam. It's one of those once in a lifetime events that really scares the crap out of you, and while you're in it it's all about death and destruction. But if you make it out, later on in life, once you are past the trauma and get your head screwed back on, you are so glad just to be alive. You really do get to a point where you are just happy to wake up every morning, and be surrounded by family and friends. People are what is truly important in life. The human species is very resilient, and eventually life will get better for those people directly affected by the trauma and tragedy. Even for those that have lost everything, eventually time will heal some of the pain. This event is what geologists call world shaping. I mean that literally. Events of this magnitude literally change the face and the geography of the earth. The earthquake occured on December 26, 2004, at 00:58:53 (GMT), 07:58:53am local time, at 3.30N, 95.87E, at a depth of 30 km, and had a magnitude of 9.0 on the Richter scale, which is basically a measurement of the earthquake's yield as opposed to intensity. There were three major tectonic plates directly involved in the magnitude 9.0 earthquake, and if you take into consideration that the places that I've listed all sit on different tectonic plates, then you could say that at least seven were involved. The major ones directly involved were the Eurasion plate, the Australian plate, and the Indian plate. The earthquake took place approximately at the intersection of these three plates. So much land and ocean was displaced over a 1000 kilometer length of fault line that the actual levels of the oceans were raised: off of San Diego, CA, the ocean rose 9 inches; off of Manzanillo, MX, the ocean level rose 8 foot 6 inches; off of Callao, Peru, the ocean level rose 19 inches; and off of Jackson Bay, N.Z., the ocean level rose 25 inches. This event literally changed the face of the earth, as you probably are aware of some of the islands off of the coast of Thailand, for example, Phi Phi Island is mostly underwater, and will probably stay underwater because of the ocean levels rising. Knowing that an event of nature has the power to move land masses is more than mind boggling to me. This was the fourth largest earthquake in the world since 1900, and[...]

Hope For The Human Race?


On some of the news stations, on the web, and I'm afraid even some of the more evangelical type Christians that attend my church are voicing opinions about last Sunday's earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia, and surrounding areas as a sign of God's displeasure with his people on earth. Generally, I don't have a problem with how they feel or what they say even though I don't always agree with what they are saying. I've learned that sometimes it's best just to let certain things go in one ear and out the other, because you will never change their opinions no matter what. I have some good friends that are evangelical Christians and we are always arguing (discussing), things to do with their views on the "end times", which they feel we are in, and I love to argue (discuss) what it means to be "born again" with them. My views are somewhat different, but hey, that's what makes America great, the right to disagree and argue (discuss). One thing that I and my friends usually agree upon is the state of the "human race." I don't hold out much hope for it generally speaking, that is until today when I found myself actually sticking up for humanity. It amazed me! Now, I realize that my friends opinions are also shared by some other evangelical Christians. You hear about them on the news and you read about them on the web, and in the paper. I don't necessarily blame them entirely for their opinions either. Some or most of the responsibility has to be given to or accepted by that person standing up there behind the pulpit preaching this stuff, and interpreting scripture. The pastors are the so called leaders of the flock and what they preach influences the flock. So this morning after church, I and some of my friends were discussing the disaster in Indonesia and one of my friends is expressing his view of things, while his wife's head is nodding in agreement, and wouldn't you know it, so are the kids. Four little kid heads, nodding up and down like some bad cartoon. It would have been kind of funny if it hadn't been all too "clone like." So, here we are, eleven of us standing around in the parking lot, and I'm listening to these people preaching about the wrath of God and about sending food and Bibles to Indonesia. Yeah, that'll work. Let's send Bibles to one of the largest Muslim countries on earth! In the middle of this argument (discussion), here comes the pastor, and he doesn't miss a beat. He starts nodding his head, up and down. They all look like the back window of some giant 'bobble head' Cadillac! By this time, I have had enough of the parking lot proselytizing committee, my girl friend had left and gone home, and in my book when she leaves that's permission for big dog to come out and play. So, I verbally flip out! After getting over my original shock of so adamantly defending the human race, and my own concept of God, the tirade followed. I don't think any of my friends, nor the pastor were prepared for the social commentary that followed. I told them all that first of all no kind of a loving God would intentionally destroy a couple of hundred thousand people, especially on that side of the world just to prove a point. What did these people do that was so bad that they should deserve this? Secondly, earthquakes and tsunamis are not caused by God. They are caused by shifting tectonic plates, that's all. There is no "bad button" in heaven or next to the throne that God hits out of spite! Ridiculous! Thirdly,[...]

What Does a Blog Feel Like?


If a blog had feelings, I'm sure that I'd be one today. It feels just like there is some idiot smashing on a keyboard that is connected to what is left of my brain.

I had a couple of thoughts this morning shortly after I was rudely awakened by some jerk shining a huge, bright, yellow light in my eyes. The first thought was where the hell did I stash the good painkillers? Come to think of it that was my only thought. On my way to the closet to get out of the yellow light that kept following me around my apartment I looked in the computer room and this idiot machine was on. I cannot believe that I would have tried to write anything last night or earlier this morning. I do not think that the aliens dropped me back off much before 6:00am. Jeez, those guys can party!

Found the painkillers. Going back to bed in the closet. No light. Hopefully, this hungover idiot will wake up. Idiocy seems to be the theme of the day so far. I'm sure that it is a theme that will carry through the rest of the day.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Finally, that idiot has stopped pounding on the keyboard!