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Sun Jan 11, 2015 at 01:23 PM PST

The "Je Suis Charlie" Discussion

by bob in ny

Je Suis Charlie
I have read a number of diaries on the Charlie Hebdo massacre and subsequent disputes concerning the "propriety" of their artistic license.  These are clearly energetic, passionate discussions, and, for example, while I think that David Brooks' comments in the NYT are assine, I certainly won't take up arms about his ill-argued philosophy.

I thought about writing a longer commentary, but instead I changed my Avatar, which I'll keep this way for awhile.   The image I used can be copied or downloaded if you would like to use it as well.  I believe a right click will give you a "save as" option and then you can use it as you might.

The issue is interesting in the variety of its complications.  But right now, I think that it is the right expression of concern and compassion for our Friends.

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Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 08:19 AM PDT

ISIS declares New Caliphate

by bob in ny

from my Mid-East correspondent ... and shared here for the benefit of the community.  There are two links -- his report calls attention the announcement and to the parallel reporting of ISIS Financial and Business Planning documents.  The first link is to a third party post in the ZeroHedge website and the second to a YouTube link.  The comments in these posts are more than a bit vitriolic; limited sampling is probably adequate.  Presumably the point is that ISIS is an investment opportunity for wealthy Arabs (especially from Saudi Arabia?).  The video helps make the point the way a video presentation accompanying the latest prospectus for a disruptive internet project might.  The report is below the squiggle.

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Kimani Gray, aged 16, shot at 11 times, hit by 7 bullets from guns fired by officers of the New York City Police Department, dies, bleeding to death on the street as they stand over him.

This is so horrible, and the complicity of all of us who have failed to complain (in which I place myself in that group) is so great.  The burden -- not of guilt (which is part of it), but sorrow and despair -- is so heavy.

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A recent post by TeacherKen on the editorial by Nicolas Kristoff   focused on the "inequity" of home generators as an example of the dislocations of an unfair tax system.  They both use the image of a home generator as opposed to an improved public infrastructure to make the point that these things happen because of an inequitable tax system that should tax rich individuals in order to build a first class public infrastructure.  As policy, I'm "OK" with their point about the tax system.  Their use of home generators as an image for that policy is misleading, distracting, wrong in important ways, and does not prove or illustrate their point.  I'll be brief below the fold.

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Mon Apr 11, 2011 at 06:49 AM PDT

Selectively defunding the government

by bob in ny

An article in the NYT this morning prompted my interest in selectively defunding the government.  Apparently, there are four freshman congressmen who are steadfastly opposed to budget negotiations (although the article doesn't report on their theological agenda, it does make the point that they prayed together before going on the floor to oppose Boehner).  Their leader says:  

“We come from a state that is prepared to go at a quicker pace with respect to cutting and reshaping and resizing government,” said Representative Trey Gowdy of the South Carolina delegation, a former prosecutor.

I have an idea how we can help him out ...

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This morning, I had an email from a correspondent in the Emirates outlining a perspective on the great tragedy in the loss of the entire public leadership echelon of Poland in the crash of a Russian airliner.  It's a perspective.  I read it several times to see if it qualifies as conspiracy theory (God forbid!) but I don't think it is.  I think it is a perspective on an issue that will be of increasing importance in the global oil calculation.  As he said in his introduction ... Walk with us ...

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Here are two key facts that everyone ought to keep in mind:  (1) there are more men and women on one aircraft carrier than there are employees of the US Department of State; (2) the military budget for music, military bands, is greater than the budget for the US Department of State.  

This imbalance should be turned around by creating, filling and deploying committed servants of this democracy (not of course shills for political and theocratic points of view) in the service of this country around the world.  That is the point of this comment, but I'll add a bit more on the inside ...

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Wed May 20, 2009 at 09:04 PM PDT

58 under 10 Thousand

by bob in ny

One of the features of the KOS site is its self policing quality.  The fact that this site works at all is a consequence of the structure that is built in to the recommendations system -- and the other policing systems that are part of the system.  The comments are part of the policing system and if someone says something nuts, there are quickly those who point that out and so on.  In a sense, this is really the free market of ideas, and in that sense this site deserves to be one of the top rated and most frequented sites on the internet.

As with any market based activity (let's say this site) there are measures that indicate the health of the site.  I have a couple of short paragraphs on this below.

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Mon Jun 18, 2007 at 07:19 PM PDT

Get Rid of this DUMB advertising

by bob in ny

What is this about Hillary, Monica and a picture of Angelina Jolie?  Can't we be a little more discriminating about the advertising on this site.  This is totally offensive.


Should this ad be removed?

42%20 votes
36%17 votes
19%9 votes
2%1 votes

| 47 votes | Vote | Results

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Truthout this afternoon quotes the Kabul Times -- via Reuters -- as saying that a "flotilla of U.S. ships entered the Gulf on Wednesday in a dramatic show of military muscle" which is, the report goes on, "greatly alarming news for the whole region lest America invade Iran and create a blood bath of its people and another quagmire for itself."

We've seen the Bush Administration stonewall the G8 meeting, attempt to push around the World Bank, subvert the consitutional perogatives of the elected assemblies of the people in the investigation of the Attorney General, and manipulate Congress and the media to obtain funding for Iraq tied to a benchmark that results in the privatization of ...

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I was very interested in the "stand up" guy Rudi Guiliani on Larry King the other night.  Larry says, "Rudi, now what about Bernie?"  and Rudi says, "Larry, I made a mistake.  I've made a lot of mistakes in my life, and this is one 'em."  Now what a stand up guy Rudi is.

But does the same rule apply to Senator Clinton?  I have a little bit of reasoned discussion on this topic below.  Let's be academic about this, OK?

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Sun Feb 04, 2007 at 07:52 AM PST

The Big Winner at the DNC meeting

by bob in ny

There have been several diaries on the mtg of the Democratic National Committee on Friday (and Saturday, too!).  I was proud to be a Democrat and to be a member of the party that had brought forth these extraordinary leaders.  We, all of us, were the winners in DC at this meeting -- and believe me, it felt terrific.

But in my view, the record, which is still unfolding, will show that Howard Dean won what he started 4 years ago at this same meeting.  Do you remember what he said?

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