Saturday, November 29, 2014

He'd rather have your cranberry sauce than not

Stop by Manhattan Infidel's blog and wish him a Happy Holiday season. He did not have a Happy Thanksgiving. You see, he invited Jonathan Gruber over for Thanksgiving dinner, and, well, I'll let him tell the sad story.

"I wanted to have a little edge in life."

She is 77-years-old and dead lifts 215 pounds.

"I," "Me," "My"

Terence P. Jeffrey notes that President Obama gave a speech in Chicago Tuesday explaining why he acted unilaterally on immigration. In the Chicago speech Obama
used the first person singular—including the pronouns “I” and “me” and the adjective “my”—91 times

President Abraham Lincoln gave speeches, too. Here is his second inaugural address, in which he used the first person singular once:
FELLOW-COUNTRYMEN:

At this second appearing to take the oath of the Presidential office there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first. Then a statement somewhat in detail of a course to be pursued seemed fitting and proper. Now, at the expiration of four years, during which public declarations have been constantly called forth on every point and phase of the great contest which still absorbs the attention and engrosses the energies of the nation, little that is new could be presented. The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself, and it is, I trust, reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all. With high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to it is ventured.

On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it, all sought to avert it. While the inaugural address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war-seeking to dissolve the Union and divide effects by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war, but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive, and the other would accept war rather than let it perish, and the war came.

One-eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was somehow the cause of the war. To strengthen, perpetuate, and extend this interest was the object for which the insurgents would rend the Union even by war, while the Government claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it. Neither party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with or even before the conflict itself should cease. Each looked for an easier triumph, and a result less fundamental and astounding. Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God, and each invokes His aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God's assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men's faces, but let us judge not, that we be not judged. The prayers of both could not be answered. That of neither has been answered fully. The Almighty has His own purposes. "Woe unto the world because of offenses; for it must needs be that offenses come, but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh." If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether."

With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.
Read more here.
Thanks to Christopher Buckley

An epidemic of racial violence? Yes!

"Black racism is the toxic glue that holds the progressive coalition together. It's the politics of envy, anger, entitlement, lawlessness, violence, and bald-faced lies. Obama and his leftist cohorts would rather rule over ruins than disappear into the dustbin of history of a healthy and racially healed nation."

A blogger who understands the left

More and more wise thinkers are recommending home schooling. My stepson asked us to homeschool him after he made the honor roll in the eighth grade. He is now 24, and is a free-thinking entrepreneur. My number two stepson is now 22, and at age 16 he chose tech school over the regular high school curriculum, and is now a skilled diesel mechanic operating with tremendous autonomy.

Chateau Heartiste writes here that
The first thing that must die in a leftoid utopia is the individual. Can’t risk any free thinkers upsetting the narrative. The next thing that must die is straight talk.

CH believes that the left is fighting a full blown culture war, and that the right does not seem to have much of a taste for fighting it.
The right simply doesn’t have the taste, nor the skill set, for fighting a full-blown culture war like the left does. The right by and large avoids culture war conflicts, while the left relishes them.

Listen to CH talk about our mainstream media:
The Leftoid Media Lie Machine operates under the direction of two fundamental psychological processes that exist in every human being, but are especially pronounced in your typical leftoid: Ego preservation and status whoring.

Media mavens and liberal lickspittles alike fancy themselves the cognitive elite; they take pride in their smarts and their education. They are world class humblebraggarts and suck-up credentialists. Their insufferable ideology — a caustic mix of snarkism, childism and feelsism — is their coin of the realm, the barter they use to signal their smarts and to draw up cultural battle lines that give them tactical advantage. When their beliefs are challenged, as is becoming more their reality every day thanks to shiv masters like yours truly, they go into rabid attack mode, because a threat to their egos is like a threat to their bodies. The leftoid is nothing if he is not his glowing, pulsing ego. If the leftoid loses his Narrative prerogative, he may as well lose his reason for living.

And so the temptation to lie lie lie is strong in the leftoid when the truth begins to come out and undercut his manicured mental world and cherished self-conception as an enlightened and kind-hearted wunderkind.

Slander, spying and sanitization will become the default actions of the liberal gatekeepers of discourse gaping ineffectually into the teeth of intractable social problems caused primarily by their own ideas and preferred policies.

In the end, the truth wins out. The question is whether it wins in the arena of genteel exchange of ideas, or it rises as the last man standing in a blood-soaked thunderdome.
Read more here.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Seth Godin on Black Friday and Cyber Monday:
#BlackFriday = media trap

Black Friday was a deliberate invention of the National Association of Retailers. It was not only the perfect way to promote stores during a super slow news day, but had the side benefit of creating a new cultural norm.

Any media outlet that talks about Black Friday as an actually important phenomenon is either ignorant or working hard to please their advertisers. Retailers offer very little in the way of actual discounts, they expose human panic and greed, and it's all sort of ridiculous if not soul-robbing.

Sixteen years ago, my friend Jerry Shereshewsky helped invent 'cyber Monday' as a further expansion of the media/shopping complex mania. It was amazingly easy to find people eager to embrace and talk about the idea of developing yet another holiday devoted to buying stuff.

Here are some of the steps involved in creating a marketing phenomena like this:

Find something that people are already interested in doing (in this case, shopping)
Add scarcity, mob dynamics, a bit of fear
Repeat the meme in the media. Press releases, B roll, clever statistics regardless of veracity
Do it on a slow news day, and mix in famous names, famous brands and even some hand-wringing about the plight of workers

Apple does this with its product launches. The IRS does the opposite of #1 around tax day. Nike sold a billion dollars worth of sneakers this way.

People like doing what other people are doing. People don't like being left out. The media likes both.
Our store quickly sold out of The Denver Post, which was chocked full of ads, and selling for $2.50 on Thursday.

Putting Richard Nixon to shame

Capitalist ambition needs a counterculture of spiritual meaning

David Brooks writes about the "ambition explosion" that has happened in China with the introduction of capitalism, and the concomitant spiritual searching that has emerged at the same time.
China is desperately searching for a spiritual and humanist nest to hold capitalist ambition. Those of us in the rest of the world are probably not searching as feverishly for a counterculture, but the essential challenge is the same. Capitalist ambition is an energizing gale force. If there’s not an equally fervent counterculture to direct it, the wind uproots the tender foliage that makes life sweet.
Read more here.

Which anti-aging "fix" did you try today?

Have you used your anti-aging products today? Tracey Samuelson writes that
the scientific community is wary of how quickly these findings are packaged and resold by companies promising a fountain of youth. “It’s probably worse today than it’s ever been,” said Dr. S. Jay Olshansky, a professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a research associate at the Center on Aging at the University of Chicago. “As soon as the scientists publish any glimmer of hope, the hucksters jump in and start selling.”

“Everybody knows someone who’s 60 who looks like he’s 50, or someone 60 who looks 70,” said Dr. Nir Barzilai, the director of the Institute for Aging Research at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine who is currently studying centenarians and their children. “Intuitively, we understand that we age at different rates, so the question is, really, ‘What’s the biological or genetic difference between those who age quickly and those who age slowly?’ ” Drugs that mimic the effect of those genes might be beneficial to the rest of the population not born with them.

The global anti-aging industry was worth $195 billion in 2013 and was projected to grow to $275 billion by 2020, according to the market research firm Global Industry Analysts. Products include beauty creams, Botox, dietary supplements and prescription medications, not all of which seek to reverse aging as much as minimize its visible effects.

Dr. Olshansky suggests that
instead of spending money on aging “fixes,” he suggests that people accept the bland prescription doctors have been offering for decades: a healthy diet and exercise. “You don’t need to spend money,” he said. “Maybe a good pair of running or walking shoes would work. Exercise is roughly the only equivalent of a fountain of youth that exists today, and it’s free to everyone.”
Read more here.

You're depressed? Maybe you should get vaccinated!

What if depression is a response to infection? Turhan Canli, a professor of integrative neuroscience at Stony Brook University,
was intrigued by research showing a connection between depression and inflammation in the body, and he started to think about the known causes of inflammation — among them pathogens like bacteria, viruses and parasites.

He notes that the symptoms of depression are similar to those of infection: “Patients experience loss of energy; they commonly have difficulty getting out of bed and lose interest in the world around them. Although our Western conceptualization puts affective symptoms front-and-center, non-Western patients who meet DSM criteria for major depression report primarily somatic symptoms.”

And, he writes, we already know that infectious agents can affect our emotions — he points to Toxoplasma gondii, a parasite that’s now somewhat famous (at least among science lovers) for its striking impact on its hosts. T. gondii can make rats like the scent of cat urine (causing obvious problems for the rats). In humans, it may have serious psychological effects — Dr. Canli cites research linking T. gondii with suicide. “Yet,” he writes, “large-scale studies of major depression and T. gondii or systematic searches to discover other potential parasitic infections have not yet been conducted.”

He believes researchers should compare tissue samples from depressed patients with those from non-depressed people, looking for evidence both of known pathogens and of new ones.

If successful, such a search could bring about big changes in depression treatment. “Imagine if we had identified one or multiple pathogens that all are associated with major depression,” Dr. Canli said. “That could mean that at some point in the future a patient would present himself or herself at the doctor’s office and the first thing they would do is run a workup on the blood or stool sample to identify exactly which particular pathogens might be present, and then develop a very targeted treatment program to address exactly those.”

One day, he suggests in his paper, research into infection and depression could even lead to a vaccine.
Read more here.

Do you fear the singularity?

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Grace and Gratitude

Ann Voskamp writes:
This world doesn’t have anything that can burn down the faith of a heart on fire for God.

What if we celebrated Thanksgiving the most because it’s the least commercialized?

What if the grace of God was only rightly answered by the gratitude of men?

Ann quotes these words from Karl Barth:
“Grace and gratitude belong together like heaven and earth.

Grace evokes gratitude like the voice an echo.

Gratitude follows grace as thunder follows lightning.”

Ann and her husband the Farmer, lived through a drought on their farm in Canada this summer. They worried that they might lose the entire corn harvest. The Farmer said to Ann when she asked about that possibility:
“When you know your Father’s loving — what can you fear losing?”

As they harvested the corn this fall, Ann remembered that summer night when they prayed for rain and later that evening the sky darkened and the family danced for joy as the hoped-for rain stormed away. Ann said to the Farmer:
“The storm gave us this yield. The storm was grace.” There’s no harvest without a storm.

Gratitude follows grace — as thunder follows lightening. And the storm is grace because whatever drives us into God, is a grace from God.
More from Barth:
[O]nly gratitude can correspond to grace, and this correspondence cannot fail.

Its failure, ingratitude, is sin, transgression.

Radically and basically all sin is simply ingratitude–man’s refusal of the one but necessary thing which is proper to and is required of him… And there’s sky and food and family and this country and a God in heaven and a love we don’t deserve and there’s grace that comes as storms and the only answer to God’s unending grace — is man’s unending gratitude. When you live in a covenant of grace, you can’t help but live out a covenant of gratitude.

And the Farmer leans into me and whispers it Thank you, Lord —

and I murmur it too.

The way Grace and Gratitude echo to each other through everything….
Read more here.=

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Giving thanks to God

Ann Voskamp reminds us that we are in
the middle of a week that moves directly from the tradition of Giving Thanks to God —- to the tradition of Advent and Wanting and Waiting for More of God.
Go here to read her poem entitled The Night Before Advent.

Take that, PETA!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Are you as good of an artist as this fish?


Thanks to Heidi Kutney

The greatest catch of all time?

Accelerating the racial polarization of the electorate.

As always, Joel Kotkin gets right down to the basics when discussing illegal immigration issues:
More recently, this wave of undocumented migration has diminished, as economic prospects, particularly for the low-skilled, have weakened. Yet the undocumented population remains upwards eleven million. Largely unskilled and undereducated, roughly half of adults 25 to 64 in this population have less than a high-school education compared to only 8 percent of the native born. Barely ten percent have any college, one third the national rate.

This workforce is being legalized at a time of unusual economic distress for the working class. Well into the post-2008 recovery, the country suffers from rates of labor participation at a 36 year low. Many jobs that were once full-time are, in part due to the Affordable Care Act, now part-time, and thus unable to support families. Finally there are increasingly few well-paying positions—including in industry—that don’t require some sort of post-college accreditation.

African-American unemployment is now twice that of whites. The black middle class, understandably proud of Obama’s elevation, has been losing the economic gains made over the past thirty years.

Ultimately, the newest migrants will be competing with existing residents—particularly poorer ones—not only for jobs but also social services.

The President’s action on immigration requires a profound shift in economic policy, particularly in the large urban centers where most undocumented are clustered, to avoid creating a squeeze on scarce jobs and services. But Obama’s other big agenda—addressing climate change—has slowed the expansion of fossil fuel development. Meanwhile, it’s the energy sector that creates precisely the kinds of high-paying blue collar jobs, averaging upwards of $100,000 annually, that immigrants might be eager to fill and could give low unskilled workers a foothold into the middle class.

Similarly, efforts by Obama’s allies at Federal agencies like HUD to encourage dense housing and discourage suburban growth means far less construction employment, one of the largest generators of good blue collar jobs and opportunities.

The current amnesty could benefit both the country overall as well as recent immigrants if it is tacked to a broad based economic growth strategy. But that doesn’t seem to be in the cards. Instead, continuing policies that inhibit broad-based economic growth are increasing the numbers of Americans who must depend on government, not the economy, to take care of themselves and their families.
Read more here.

America: our work in progress

Common ground, shared values? Not so much any more. Then, how can we be governed?

Jay Leno says thanks

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Usurping the Constitutional role of Congress

Scott Ott incisvely analyzes what President Obama did last week. Read Scott here.

Go ogle

Does Google have too much power? Is it a monopoly that should be broken up? Scott Ott (Scrappleface) has a helpful suggestion that might make the folks at the E.U. happy:
Increasing worries about anti-competitive American dominance of the internet have driven the European Union (EU) to vote on a motion to break up Google. The symbolic, but morally significant, vote could come as early as Thursday.

If the vote succeeds, Google says it will comply “to maintain European goodwill and to avoid being evil,” by splitting into publicly-traded entities named ‘Go’ and ‘ogle.’

‘Go’ will be the “action service,” aimed at those who use the internet to run a business, or to conduct academic research. ‘ogle’ will handle the other 99 percent of Internet traffic, largely pornography.
Read more here.

Demons

Brave men have to go up there and find out.

Seinfeld election: about nothing

Monday, November 24, 2014

The accurate and tragic story of what happened in Ferguson, Missouri

Israel bad, Islamic State okay

A guy goes to the University of California campus at Berkeley. He waves the ISIS flag and gets no detractors. He waves an Israeli flag and gets many who disagree vehemently.

Where does our fecal matter go?



Thanks to Maggie's Farm

Father figure?

The Washington Post has assigned a team of nine writers to cover the Bill Cosby sexual assault allegations. Can the Washington Post assign a team of writers to cover Benghazi, the IRS, or any of the dozens of other scandals of the Obama White House?

They interview one of Cosby's many attorneys, Martin Singer, who says:
“The new, never-before-heard claims from women who have come forward in the past two weeks with unsubstantiated, fantastical stories about things they say occurred 30, 40, or even 50 years ago have escalated far past the point of absurdity,” he said. “These brand new claims about alleged decades-old events are becoming increasingly ridiculous, and it is completely illogical that so many people would have said nothing, done nothing, and made no reports to law enforcement or asserted civil claims if they thought they had been assaulted over a span of so many years.

“Lawsuits are filed against people in the public eye every day. There has never been a shortage of lawyers willing to represent people with claims against rich, powerful men, so it makes no sense that not one of these new women who just came forward for the first time now ever asserted a legal claim back at the time they allege they had been sexually assaulted.

During an interview on Friday with Florida Today, Cosby said: “I know people are tired of me not saying anything, but a guy doesn’t have to answer to innuendos. People should fact-check. People shouldn’t have to go through that and shouldn’t answer to innuendos.”

The allegations represent a stunning reshaping of Cosby’s legacy. Cosby built his fame on a family-friendly comedic persona. He has lectured black youths about proper behavior. He has been honored with a Presidential Medal of Freedom and been lauded for making the largest donation ever by an African American to a historically black college, Spelman College in Atlanta.

Of course, another thing that is different now is the existence of social media, to which some of Cosby's accusers are telling their stories. What of Camille, Cosby's wife? After their son's murder and the revelation of a Bill Cosby affair in Las Vegas, Camille wrote in 1997:
“Bill and I were very young when we married; he was 26, I was 19. We had to mature, we had to learn the definition of unselfish love, and we did. When we committed to each other wholeheartedly years ago, our marriage became healthy and solid. Also, we blossomed as individuals. Our marriage encompasses mutual love, respect, trust and communication. Sound relationships must have positive reciprocity; they can’t be one-sided and strong.”

How many writers were assigned to dig up Barack Obama's history as he ran for President in 2008? The nine reporters on this Cosby story have gone back many decades to interview the women who say Cosby drugged them and raped them. Read more here.

This will undoubtedly help chicken sales



Thanks to The Blaze

Communist China's silent war against the United States

Are we currently in a war with China?
Casey Fleming, CEO of BlackOps Partners Corporation, which does counterintelligence and protection of trade secrets for Fortune 500 companies, spoke about the dangers posed by the army of spies at work against the United States under the direction of the GSD.

“It is clearly America’s biggest threat,” he said.

“It’s a war of the technology age, an economic war, a war where bombs are not dropped and guns are not fired, but it’s a war we’re squarely in,” he said.

One way to estimate the damage done in this war is through the cost of intellectual property theft, most of which is done by the Chinese regime.

The Commission on the Theft of Intellectual Property estimated such theft costs the United States $300 billion and 1.2 million jobs a year.

Fleming said, based on research from his company’s intelligence unit and client situations, the cost is closer to $500 billion worth of raw innovation that is stolen from U.S. companies.

That $500 billion would otherwise generate revenue, profits, and jobs. In a previous interview, Fleming estimated the total loss to the economy from the theft of innovation is $5 trillion each year when considering the expected 10-year life of the research and development.

The Chinese regime’s theft of intellectual property for economic gain is just one piece of a larger strategy to fight a war while avoiding troop-to-troop combat. The report states, “Hybrid warfare involves a state or state-like actor’s use of all available diplomatic, informational, military, and economic means to destabilize an adversary.”

The report outlines China’s uses of hybrid warfare, which include, “trade warfare, financial warfare, ecological warfare, psychological warfare, smuggling warfare, media warfare, drug warfare, network warfare, technological warfare, fabrication warfare, resources warfare, economic aid warfare, cultural warfare, and international law warfare.”

Fleming, whose company runs counterintelligence operations and researches the Chinese regime’s systems for espionage and unconventional warfare, said that under the Third Department there are 20 operational bureaus and between 250,000 and 300,000 soldiers dedicated to cyberespionage. The New York Times has also reported 20 bureaus.

Under the Second Department, between 30,000 and 50,000 human spies are working on insider operations targeting U.S. and foreign companies.

No source has been able to give an estimate on the number of operatives under the Fourth Department, which works on electronic intelligence.

The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) “is not a national army belonging to the state,” states a Nov. 12 report from the Congressional Research Service. “Rather, it serves as the Party’s armed wing.”

The PLA is not fighting its war on behalf of the Chinese people, and the soldiers under the GSD’s spy departments are being used to further the financial and political ambitions of the Chinese Communist Party.
Read more here.

"We made a decision as a team to come forward and tell the truth.”

Paula Bolyard reports that
Benghazizi Annex Security Team Members Disagree Forcefully with House Intel Committee Report
Kris Paronto: I looked Mike Rogers in the eyes and said, "If we would have not been delayed we would have saved the ambassador's life and Sean Smith's life."

CIA Benghazi annex security team members Kris Paronto and Mark Geist continue to speak the truth whenever and wherever they can about the stand down orders they received on 9-11-12 in Benghazi.
A caller from New Jersey asked the men how Hillary Clinton’s “what difference does it make” statement during her Senate Foreign Relations Committee testimony made them feel.

“Angry,” Geist said. “No matter what context you put that statement in from somebody at that level within politics, it always makes a difference. If you don’t find out the truth about what happened you can’t evaluate what you did right and wrong and it angered me very much.”

“It angered me as well,” said Paronto. “People died. A UN ambassador at a high level and then our friends died. It is a huge difference when Americans die on foreign soil, so context or not, it was still an incorrect statement and it still makes me angry today hearing that.”

He said he thinks he speaks for the rest of the team when he says it makes them more determined to get the real story out about the night of the attack “and not be swayed or bullied to not continue to put the truth out there.” He said that every time he hears Clinton’s statement it makes him want to dig his heels in so everyone knows that “what happened on that night matters.”

“You’re in charge. You’re a leader. You don’t say that about military personnel when they die, especially the way they died, or when you lack support, when we didn’t have the support we needed over there,” Paronto said.
Read more here.

Qatar surpasses Saudi Arabia as a world sponsor of terrorism

Denis MacEoin writes:
The Qataris have money, they have power and influence, and they have an abiding love for fundamentalist Islam. They know what they are doing and they wait for their day to come.
Read more here about how the Qataris are now one of the world's biggest sponsors of terrorism.

Google engineers conclude: "renewable energy technologies simply won't work!"

Eric Worrall reports:
A research effort by Google corporation to make renewable energy viable has been a complete failure, according to the scientists who led the programme. After 4 years of effort, their conclusion is that renewable energy “simply won’t work”.

According to an interview with the engineers, published in IEEE;

“At the start, we had shared the attitude of many stalwart environmentalists: We felt that with steady improvements to today’s renewable energy technologies, our society could stave off catastrophic climate change. We now know that to be a false hope …
Renewable energy technologies simply won’t work; we need a fundamentally different approach.”
http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/what-it-would-really-take-to-reverse-climate-change

The key problem appears to be that the cost of manufacturing the components of the renewable power facilities is far too close to the total recoverable energy – the facilities never, or just barely, produce enough energy to balance the budget of what was consumed in their construction. This leads to a runaway cycle of constructing more and more renewable plants simply to produce the energy required to manufacture and maintain renewable energy plants – an obvious practical absurdity.

As a review by The Register of the IEEE article states.

“Even if one were to electrify all of transport, industry, heating and so on, so much renewable generation and balancing/storage equipment would be needed to power it that astronomical new requirements for steel, concrete, copper, glass, carbon fibre, neodymium, shipping and haulage etc etc would appear. All these things are made using mammoth amounts of energy: far from achieving massive energy savings, which most plans for a renewables future rely on implicitly, we would wind up needing far more energy, which would mean even more vast renewables farms – and even more materials and energy to make and maintain them and so on. The scale of the building would be like nothing ever attempted by the human race.”
Read more here.

Drinking is healthy?

Addiction/public health specialist Dr. Stanton Peele says we have an "addiction phobia" in America. Well, yeah, I guess I do. I try very hard to stay away from any addictions. Dr. Peele is constantly writing about how drinking alcohol in moderation is good for you and abstinence from alcohol is associated with earlier mortality. He also writes about:
significantly reduced risks of cognitive loss or dementia in moderate, nonbinge consumers of alcohol.

And alcohol conveys health benefits. If you cannot drink (or believe that you cannot), you probably increase your likelihood of early death. If so, I am truly sorry for you.
Read more here.

While Dr. Peele constantly writes about this subject, I have never seen him offer a theory as to why drinking alcohol is so beneficial. What is there about the alcohol that makes it so healthy for us?

So I decided to Google "Why is drinking alcohol in moderation good for us?" One of the first articles to come up was this one by David Hanson Ph.D.:
Some writers have been arguing that wine drinkers tend to be healthier than others because they generally have better health habits, not because they consume alcohol.

It’s true that wine drinkers tend to have better health habits than many others do. However, that can’t explain away the established medical fact that the moderate consumption of beer, wine or distilled spirits improves health and longevity. Both beer and liquor tend to confer the same health benefits as red wine; the benefit is found in the alcohol rather than in a specific beverage.

Alcohol reduces heart attacks, ichemic strokes and circulatory problems through a number of identified ways. They include:

Improving blood lipid profile by increasing HDL (“good”) cholesterol and decreasing LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.
Decreasing thrombosis (blood clotting) by reducing platelet aggregation, reducing fibrinogen (a blood clotter) and increasing fibrinolysis (the process by which clots dissolve).
Other ways such as increasing coronary blood flow, reducing blood pressure, and reducing blood insulin level.

The moderate consumption of alcohol appears to be more effective than most other lifestyle changes that are used to lower the risk of heart and other diseases. For example, the average person would need to follow a very strict low-fat diet, exercise vigorously on a regular basis, eliminate salt from the diet, lose a substantial amount of weight, and probably begin medication in order to lower cholesterol by 30 points or blood pressure by 20 points.

But medical research suggests that alcohol can have a greater impact on heart disease than even these hard-won reductions in cholesterol levels or blood pressure. Only cessation of smoking is more effective. Additionally, other medical research suggests that adding alcohol to a healthful diet is more effective than just following the diet alone.

After reviewing the research on heart diseases and stroke, Dr. David Whitten reported that "we don't have any drugs that are as good as alcohol” and noted investigator Dr. Curtis Ellison asserted that "abstinence from alcohol is a major risk factor for coronary heart disease."

The moderate consumption of alcohol appears to be beneficial in reducing or preventing even more diseases and health problems including angina pectoris bone fractures and osteoporosis, diabetes, digestive ailments, duodenal ulcer, erectile dysfunction (ED), essential tremors, gallstones, hearing loss, hepatitis A, kidney stones, liver disease, macular degeneration (a major cause of blindness), pancreatic cancer, Parkinson’s disease, poor cognition and memory, poor physical condition in elderly, rheumatoid arthritis, stress and depression, and type B gastritis.

It’s not surprising that the science-based Harvard Healthy Eating Pyramid recommends the regular moderate consumption of alcohol (beer, wine, or spirits) unless contraindicated.

It’s clear that the moderate consumption of alcohol improves health and increases longevity.
Read more here.

Grand jury has reached a decision in Ferguson

The Washington Post is reporting that
A grand jury has reached a decision on whether to indict Darren Wilson, the white Ferguson, Mo., police officer whose fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager sparked days of turbulent protests, sources close to the process said.

News conferences are being prepared by the county prosecutor’s office and the Missouri governor, sources said. Those news conferences will likely come later Monday.
Read more here.

Hidden


Richard Benedetto wonders:
What did ever happen to Bowe Bergdahl?

There was a time not so long ago when news editors kept what was known as a “tickler” file. In it were reminders of certain issues, stories or personalities that needed to be updated and re-examined. In those days, Bergdahl’s name would have been high on the list. With him out of the news since July, an editor might have said to a reporter, “Let’s find out what Bergdahl’s been doing down there in Texas for the past four months. What is his job? What does he do all day? How do his fellow soldiers treat him? Does he have friends? Does he date? Does he get any leave? Has he been home to visit his parents?”

The American public, and not just conservatives, would jump at a chance to read a story like that.
How does a reporter go about getting that story? It’s not easy, but it is doable. It takes time, patience and a lot of shoe leather trying to find people who will talk and provide the information. That kind of reporting seems to be in dwindling supply in this New Media era where talking heads, bloggers and social media tweeters take precedence over the work of on-the-ground reporters. And the American public is all the poorer for it.
Read more here.

Thankshallowistmas

Bill Maher wants to save Christmas. He suggests shortening the holiday season, limiting free speech (like the good liberal he is), and ending gift-giving. Luckily, few Americans will agree.

It depends on whom he's hanging with

Times when our president is happy...


Times when he is unhappy...


Thanks to Steven Goddard

There is trouble in Israel

Prime Minister Netanyahu is proposing a new Nationality Law. Peter Enav writes at Associated Press:
Israel's justice minister said Monday that if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insists on bringing a contentious nationality law to a parliamentary vote, it could mean the end of his government and the holding of early elections.

The bill would formally identify Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, enshrine Jewish law as a source of inspiration for legislation, and delist Arabic as an official language. It has been condemned by critics as a threat to the country's democratic character that would further escalate Israeli-Palestinian tensions.

Netanyahu says the proposed law is needed because of the refusal of the Palestinian leadership to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, insisting it would put Israel's Jewish and democratic characters on equal footing. Opponents charge that it discriminates against Israel's Arab minority and paves the way for Jewish religious law to supplant democratic practices.

Debate over the nationality law comes amid soaring tensions between Israeli Jews and Israeli Arabs, who make up about 20 percent of the population of eight million.
Read more here.

Underestimating Israel

Michael Wilner writes in the Jerusalem Post:
But in the deal under discussion in Vienna, Iran would be able to comply with international standards for a decade and, from Israel's perspective, then walk, not sneak, into the nuclear club.

"You've not only created a deal that leaves Iran as a threshold nuclear power today, because they have the capability to break out quickly if they wanted to," the Israeli official contended. "But you've also legitimized Iran as a military nuclear power in the future."

From the moment this deal is clinched, Israel fears it will guarantee Iran as a military nuclear power. There will be no off ramp, because Iran's reentry into the international community will be fixed, a fait accompli, by the very powers trying to contain it.

"The statement that says we've prevented them from having a nuclear weapon is not a true statement," the Israeli official continued. "What you've said is, you're going to put restrictions on Iran for a given number of years, after which there will be no restrictions and no sanctions. That's the deal that's on the table."

Revisiting the use of force

Without an exit ramp, Israel insists its hands will not be tied by an agreement reached this week, this month or next, should it contain a clause that ultimately normalizes Iran's home-grown enrichment program.

On the surface, its leadership dismisses fears that Israel will be punished or delegitimized if it disrupts an historic, international deal on the nuclear program with unilateral military action against its infrastructure.

By framing the deal as fundamentally flawed, regardless of its enforcement, Israel is telling the world that it will not wait to see whether inspectors do their jobs as ordered.

"Ten, fifteen years in the life of a politician is a long time," the Israeli said, in a vague swipe against the political directors now scrambling in Vienna. "In the life of a nation, it's nothing."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has threatened the use of force against Iran several times since 2009, even seeking authorization from his cabinet in 2011. Iran's program has since grown in size and scope.

According to his aides, the prime minister's preference is not war, but the continuation of a tight sanctions regime on Iran's economy coupled with a credible threat of military force. Netanyahu believes more time under duress would have led to an acceptable deal. But that opportunity, in his mind, may now be lost.

Whether Israel still has the ability to strike Iran, without American assistance, is an open question. Quoted last month in the Atlantic magazine, US officials suggested that window for Netanyahu closed over two years ago.

But responding to claims by that same official, quoted by Jeffrey Goldberg, over Netanyahu's courage and will, the Israeli official responded sternly: "The prime minister is a very serious man who knows the serious responsibility that rests on his shoulders. He wouldn't say the statements that he made if he didn't mean them."

"People have underestimated Israel many, many times in the past," he continued, "and they underestimate it now."
Read more here.

Obama announces Hagel resignation

Wow! What an interesting morning. Obama forces Chuck Hagel to resign! Will Hagel now come forth as Robert Gates did before him, and warn us about Obama? Helene Cooper writes in the New York Times:
He raised the ire of the White House in August as the administration was ramping up its strategy to fight the Islamic State, directly contradicting the president, who months before had likened the Sunni militant group to a junior varsity basketball squad. Mr. Hagel, facing reporters in his now-familiar role next to General Dempsey, called the Islamic State an “imminent threat to every interest we have,” adding, “This is beyond anything that we’ve seen.” White House officials later said they viewed those comments as unhelpful, although the administration still appears to be struggling to define just how large is the threat posed by the Islamic State.
Read more here.
And there is this from Breitbart:
Sen. John McCain says: “I thank Chuck Hagel for his service, and I know that he was very, very frustrated.” McCain, expected to become chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee in January, was reacting to news that President Obama is forcing Secretary of Defense Hagel to resign.

In an radio interview with KFYI radio in Phoenix, McCain said that he just spoke with Hagel on the phone and had met with him recently. McCain was a vocal opponent of Hagel’s nomination in 2013, but pointed out that the former Republican senator was unfairly characterized as not being able to handle the job.

“Already White House people are leaking ‘well he wasn’t up to the job,’ well believe me he was up to the job it was the job he was given where he really was never really brought into that real tight circle inside the White House that makes all the decisions which has put us into the incredible debacle that we’re in today throughout the world,” McCain said.

McCain praised Hagel for characterizing ISIS as the greatest threat in the Middle East, while Obama was calling them members of a JV team. He also criticized Obama for failing in areas like the Middle East, Ukraine, and responding to a newly aggressive China.

We've had our disagreements but Chuck Hagel is an honorable man,” McCain added.

Bill Kristol has this to say:
So why has he been fired? Because the Obama White House needs a scapegoat. President George W, Bush fired Don Rumsfeld in connection with a change in strategy (the surge) and to bring in someone of independent stature. That's not the case today. President Obama continues to want a Pentagon with weak leadership and little independence. There's therefore no reason to expect the next two years of Obama foreign and defense policy to be any better than the past two.
Read more here.

Over at PJ Media Bryan Preston calls our attention to an interview Hagel gave to Charlie Rose last week:
Rose asked Hagel to elaborate on comments that he made in a speech at the Reagan Library last weekend. In that speech, Hagel said that America’s military capability, while still the best in the world, is being threatened.

Hagel re-iterated that to Rose, but also left viewers to wonder about the direction that President Obama is taking the military.

“I am worried about it, I am concerned about it, Chairman Dempsey is, the chiefs are, every leader of this institution,” Hagel said, including Pentagon leadership but leaving both President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden’s names out of his list of officials who are worried about the U.S. military’s declining capability. Hagel said that the Congress and the American people need to know what while the U.S. military remains the strongest, best trained and most motivated in the world, its lead is being threatened because of policies being implemented now.

Also at PJ Media Stephen Kruiser pointed to something else that may have been a factor: the talks between the U.S. and Iran were supposed to end today, but have now been continued to July 2015.
Well, now we know why Chuck Hagel absolutely, positively had to conclude that his service to the country was finished this morning. Iranian and Western diplomats said nuclear talks between Iran and six world powers will be extended until July 1, 2015.

The diplomats spoke in Vienna on the final day of the group’s self-imposed, year-long period to agree on a comprehensive deal to ensure Iran’s nuclear program is peaceful.

Nothing says, “We want to thwart your nuclear ambitions,” like giving more time to the potentially dangerous party.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

On dominance and submission

The latest from Chateau Heartiste:
As with girls and their love of male dominance, a woman’s submission is won not with a club to the head but gradually intensifying demands and shows of defiance that weaken the female presumption of her romantic entitlement and undermine her reflex to pigeonhole you as one of the mediocre masses of beta males whom she can walk over.

Challenging the moral cult of altruism

Loving people for their virtues. Make yourself worthy of love!

Sarah Palin: "I was forbidden from telling the truth about Obama during the 2008 campaign"

Tis the season

This transparent administration can't tell you the truth about its signature legislation!

Bill, Schmill, Let's do an executive order!

Something we all can contribute to

The first Biobus has been launched in Britain. It runs on a combination of your poop and your food waste.

See no identity theft. Hear no identity theft. Speak no identity theft.

Michelle Malkin writes:
See no identity theft. Hear no identity theft. Speak no identity theft.

A high-profile immigration attorney crowed: “Good news for deferred action applicants: If you used a false Social Security card, you need not reveal the number on your deferred action application forms. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has clarified that when the forms ask for an applicant’s Social Security number, it refers to Social Security numbers issued to the applicant. If you used a friend’s number, a made-up number or a stolen number, you should answer N/A for ‘not applicable’ where it asks for the number.”

Since then, more than 500,000 DACA applications have been approved with abysmal oversight, little public disclosure and total absolution for identity rip-off artists. The latest planned administrative amnesty will dwarf that ongoing fiasco.
Read more here.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

How much snow did Buffalo get last week?


A vehicle, with a large chunk of snow on its top, drives along Route 20 after digging out after a massive snow fall in Lancaster, N.Y. on Nov. 19. Another two to three feet of snow is expected in the area. (Gary Wiepert/Associated Press)

Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Embracing uniqueness, making each moment matter

A community's love for a teacher

A privilege shared by all of His creatures


African Wildlife Winner: A solitary Masai giraffe is showered by light in a magnificent sun burst at Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya.

The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History received over 20,000 entries from around the world to compete for the best wildlife and nature photo. Nature’s Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Competition is open to all level of experience. The museum will be showcasing sixty honored and winning entries until April 20, 2015.

Thanks to Ann Voskamp

More insights into the inner workings of Hell

Talk about unique! Manhattan Infidel has just landed an interview in Hell with dead anchorman Peter Jennings! Jennings gave him his perspective on the recent American mid-term elections. Read the full interview here.

New York Mayor late for two very important meetings

New York Mayor Bill De Blasio was late for a scheduled meeting with his pal Satan recently. Manhattan Infidel, as usual, has the scoop here. De Blasio was also late to a memorial service honoring victims of 9-11.

Jon Stewart mocks Gruber, Obama, Pelosi

Petty Woman

Free to come in, infect us, and commit crimes

A retired border agent talks about people coming in to the United States with communicable diseases, being members of criminal gangs, and being allowed to go free in America.

Our too-big-to-fail gambling bankers and Bill Clinton

Dick Morris has a "history video" today in which he puts the blame on Bill Clinton for the failure of the economy in 2008 and the shakiness of the economy yet today. Go here to view it.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Checks and balances

Betsy Newmark
isn't necessarily opposed to some sort of amnesty for illegal immigrants who have been here working, I'm still appalled by the President's action. This will send the message to anyone who wants to come here and not wait in line for legal documents that they just have to get here and wait around for amnesty. The border has to be better secured first before such a regularization of immigrants' legal status can go through or all we are doing is strengthening the magnet. But this has to be done legislatively. Every day I teach students about how the Constitution is supposed to work. And nowhere in there is there a section that says that a president who hasn't been able to get Congress to go along can just do it on his own. That violates every principle underlying the structure of our government. And once stretched like this by Obama, it will never return. We've been expanding the powers of the federal government and the president since 1788 but this is one huge increase of a different character that will fundamentally alter our system of supposed checks and balances.
Read much more here.

LBJ orders pants



Thanks to Jonah Goldberg

History is his co-pilot

Jonathan Goldberg notes how the scandals come fast and furiously. Now we are beyond Gruber and headlong into Obama's lawlessness on immigration.
Like Bill Clinton at an orgy, I don’t know where to start with this. Placating Obama’s wishes doesn’t erase his lawless deed, it establishes a precedent for a new presidential power of lawless action. It’s against the law for me to steal your car. If I do it anyway and then say, “Look, all you have to do to nullify my lawless action is sign over the title to me, that way it will all be nice and proper” does that really make it all better?

We’ve heard a great deal lately about the “wrong side of history.” It is one of the president’s favorite ways to describe whatever side he isn’t on, and it’s been a phrase on the lips of progressives for quite a while. Among the myriad problems with the notion of a “wrong side of history,” as many critics (including me) have long argued, is that in the domestic sphere it is a call for one’s opponents to surrender to the inevitability of defeat, and in the international sphere it is deployed rhetorically to avoid deploying anything real.

So, for example, on the home front, liberals insist that opponents of same-sex marriage should give up now because they are sure to lose eventually. And on the international stage, when Barack Obama castigates Vladimir Putin for being on the wrong side of history, what he’s really saying is, “Don’t worry, we don’t need to do anything, History and her long moral arc will do the heavy lifting for us.” No wonder the British historian Robert Conquest complained that the phrase has a “Marxist twang.”

While I think partisan motivations are a powerful driver of what Obama is doing, he clearly has an ideological framework that helps him justify it. And that framework is not the Constitution. It is History.

Barack Obama’s leapfrog over the Constitution is perfectly consistent with Woodrow Wilson’s hatred of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. It is of a piece with FDR’s “Second Bill of Rights.” It is the latest chapter in the progressive cult of History in which they — and only they — know what the universe requires and no mortal authority, and certainly not any old piece of paper, can stand in the way. Why? Because History is their co-pilot.
Read more here.

You don't have to try so hard

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Obama outlines his amnesty plan

As usual, the most thorough early analysis of President Obama's amnesty speech comes from outside America via The Daily Mail:
'We're not going to deport you': Obama announces amnesty for millions of 'anchor baby' parents and illegal immigrant children – as long as they've been in US for five years

Obama addressed the nation to outline a new executive order that will allow millions of illegal immigrants to remain in the country
New plan has enraged Republicans who say he lacks the constitutional authority to pick and choose which to deport
Illegal immigrants can't apply for months and no one who arrived after January 1, 2010 is eligible
President acknowledges that it's a temporary fix and demands help from Congress to make it permanent
Anyone who takes advantage of the program will have to pass criminal and national security background checks, pay their taxes, pay a fee and prove their eligibility
Two Republican aides complained about an 'amnesty' for people who came to the US illegally and then had children here – calling their children 'anchor babies'
Read more here.

If you have these qualities, you will attract attention from the opposite sex

What do men desire in women, and visa versa? Our leader Chateau Heartiste gives us his view:
As I’ve written before, what men like in women is simple. In descending order of importance, here are the female attractiveness traits that men desire in women:

Beauty.
Femininity.
Sexual eagerness.

In descending order of importance, here are the male attractiveness traits that women desire in men:

Psychosocial dominance (game).
High status/fame.
Personality (passion/charisma/humor).
Wealth.
Good looks/height/muscularity.
Cleverness/smarts.
Dependability/reliability.
Sexual prowess.

A man along the alpha-beta-omega axis will exhibit the above traits in varying degrees of magnitude. The more of each attractiveness trait a man possesses, especially of those traits at the top of the pyramid that most attract women, the greater in intensity, amount, and quality of female attention he will fetch. A super alpha is a man who has maxed out in each category of attractiveness. An omega is a man who possesses little to none of these traits. A typical beta provider is likely a man who is low in the top four traits, average in looks and smarts, high in dependability, and low in sexual prowess.
Read more here.

The science of choosing girls for long term investment and wife and mother investment

How many sex partners have you really had? How did you answer that question? Did you actually sit down and count? Or did you give a rough estimate? If you actually counted, your estimate will likely be more accurate and lower than those who just give a rough estimate. Read more here.

Chateau Heartiste offers this advice to his male readers:
It is the inexperienced beta male who is most often in the dark about a woman’s sexual history and liable to be victimized by the cheating slut.

Men subconsciously judge women’s sluttiness for eminently practical reasons, just as women judge men on a host of alpha benchmarks for similarly practical reasons. No moral equation required. “Slut” is, in fact, a morally neutral term in the context of the sexual market, where a slutty girl is viewed, justifiably, desirably as an easy lay who will go all the way right away, and undesirably as a girlfriend or wife prospect in whom to invest precious resources. With the law and social institutions of the modern west arrayed against male interest as it hasn’t been in all of human history, it is of critical importance that men get this part of choosing girls for long term investmest and wife and mother potential down to a science.

Chateau Heartiste kindly offers this guide for men based on the number of sex partners the woman you wish to date has had:
0 lifetime partners: Sweet virginal manna. A bit weird, but you’re confident you’ll break her in.
3 lifetime partners: Typical woman. Wife and mother of your children material.
10 lifetime partners: Above average. Proceed with caution.
15 lifetime partners: Well above average. Be dominant or she’ll cheat.
25 lifetime partners: A whole lot. Use her and lose her.
100 lifetime partners: Stopwatch material. You wonder how fast you can get her from “Hi” to “Spread your ass cheeks, I’m going in”.
Read more here.

A cure for "Bubble Boy" disease


Christian and Alysia Padilla-Vaccaro and their healthy twins Annabella (left) and Evangelina. Now with a newly-restored immune system, Evangelina lives a normal and healthy life. Courtesy of UCLA

Alice Park writes:
Alysia Padilla-Vaccaro and Christian Vaccaro owe their daughter’s life to stem cells. Evangelina, now two, is alive today because she saved herself with her own bone marrow cells.

Evangelina, a twin, was born with a severe immune disorder caused by a genetic aberration that makes her vulnerable to any and all bacteria and viruses; even a simple cold could be fatal. But doctors at University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) Broad Stem Cell Research Center gave her a new treatment, using her own stem cells, that has essentially cured her disease. She’s one of 18 children who have been treated with the cutting-edge therapy, and the study’s leader, Dr. Donald Kohn, says that the strategy could also be used to treat other gene-based disorders such as sickle cell anemia.
Read more here.
Thanks to Christopher Buckley

What our kids are dealing with in school at all grade levels



Thanks to Christopher Buckley

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

"I am nobody"

Evolutionary female adaptations

Kevin Williamson writes:
Charles Manson is a penniless prisoner serving a life sentence at the Corcoran State Prison in California, his death sentence having been automatically commuted thanks to the state supreme court’s suspension of the death penalty. The 80-year-old man, who is reasonably fit for a prisoner of his age but does have a swastika carved into his forehead, has just been issued a marriage license to wed Afton Elaine “Star” Burton, 26, an attractive young woman from Illinois who has been corresponding with Manson since she was 17, and who moved to California at 19 to be nearer to him. Manson is not permitted conjugal visits, but, if the couple is so inclined, the state of California will in its benevolence permit a clergyman or magistrate of their choosing to officiate at a prison wedding, which up to ten guests may attend.
Read more of Kevin's thoughts here.

Days of Broken Arrows writes a short history of Manson:
Manson:

Son of a prostitute.
No father.
Awful childhood.
Barely literate.
5’2″ tall.
Spent most of his youth in detention centers.
When he was finally released as an adult, he begged to stay inside, worrying he could not handle life on the outside.
With a few years he had harems of women.
Held orgies.
Orgies were so great that Beach Boy Dennis Wilson invited them to move in.
Dennis Wilson was a major Alpha Male rock star of the ’60s.
Manson then order his women to kill.
They were so devoted that they did.
His women were not ugly losers — some were former cheerleaders.

Say what you will about the guy, but he had an innate Alpha quality. Shame it was put to such bad use. Guys who whine they can’t get women should think about his life and how he managed to not only get women to sleep with him but basically make them servants to his will. He had some serious charisma.

I’m not surprised at the wife who is a fraction of his age. I’d be surprised if he didn’t have groupies.

F. Roger Devlin writes:
The very first thing contemporary dating gurus teach men is not to be a “nice guy.” Nor is this aversion to “niceness” exclusive to feminine psychology: even men understand the pejorative connotations of the word innocuous.

Perhaps more important than piling up more examples to attest the phenomenon is giving a little thought to why female masochism occurs. Like other sex traits, it is an evolutionary adaptation. I am going to go way out on a limb and suggest that early hominid males may not have been quite so delicate as Tom Fleming, who becomes ill at the very thought of a woman being struck. African men are, by all accounts, pretty quick with their fists to this day. Gallantry is an achievement of civilization, not a part of our primitive nature.

Now, females in our “environment of evolutionary adaptation” were dependent on males for mating, protection, and access to resources. These males were bigger and stronger than females and could easily hurt them if angered or displeased. If our female ancestors had been delicate snowflakes unable to endure life with such brutes, we would not be here today. In other words, women adapted to male brutality, including occasional violence, learning how to get through or around it.

Think for a moment, men, how you would learn to behave if you were dependent for survival on an unpredictable and often violent creature larger and stronger than yourself. You would learn not simply to take what you wanted. You would learn to act when his back is turned, to use indirection, deception, manipulation. You would learn to conceal your true thoughts and keep Big Boy confused as to your true intentions. You would, in short, learn to act like a woman.

The battle of the sexes is a contest of force vs. cunning. Yes, civilized men learn to control their aggressive impulses and not beat women up every time they feel irritation with them. In the modern West, men have largely renounced the use of their natural weapon for controlling women, i.e., force. Have women renounced the use of their own weapons against men? Certainly we cannot expect women to shed millennial evolutionary adaptations automatically the instant men learn to behave.

Women’s basic strategy during courtship is still to keep suitors confused. Their primary method of getting what they want is still the indirect route through influencing their men. When they express aggression, it still usually takes the form of passive aggression. And they are still both more frequent and more effective liars than men.

To judge by self-help literature aimed at women, most conceive the task of finding a mate as one of figuring out “how to flatter, tease, dupe, and otherwise manipulate a man into marriage” (Rhoads, p. 120). Does it never occur to women that if they really were loyal, sincere, and feminine, men might not need to be duped into marrying them?

While I am not holding my breath for feminism to demand an end to feminine wiles, I think it possible for women to overcome the uglier side of their nature just as men learn to control their temper and instinct for aggression.

In short, I would be more inclined to sympathize with all the campaigns opposing “violence against women” if they were coupled with their logical counterpart: opposing “fraud against men.”
Read more here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Unpredictability and ambiguity: two characteristics women love about men

Chateau Heartiste wrote this in 2012:
Women love two characteristics about men: unpredictability and ambiguity. The woman who can’t readily predict or decipher your reaction, or the meaning of your words, is the woman who will make her desire more predictable and less ambiguous to you. She does not want your hostility or your sycophancy, both of which are as predictable as sunrises. She wants your mystery.

Are you a woman plagued by "the grass is always greener" syndrome?

Sheryl Paul writes:
I had a client last year who, in her own words, suffered terribly from the "grass is always greener" syndrome. She had initially called me about two months before her wedding and couldn't stop crying throughout her session because she was so tortured by the thought that she was making a mistake. She had been with her fiance for about five years but had struggled almost from the beginning with wondering if she was with the "right" man.

At the root of the problem was her inability to let go of an ex-boyfriend. I'm not sure I can even qualify this other man as a boyfriend as he never fully committed to her. In fact, from the beginning, he frequently had women on the side. He lied to her, cheated on her, and was, in a word, a jerk. And even though she knew that he wasn't a good partner and that he would only bring her misery, even though he had broken her trust and her heart repeatedly, she couldn't stop thinking about him. Sure, he was witty and smart, but that wasn't what hooked her. The hook was the sex.

Is it possible that -- as she constantly agonized over it -- she just didn't love her husband and never would? Of course it's possible, but it's not likely. And she would never find out the truth as long as she remained obsessed with the jerk. Something in her was drawn to her husband from the beginning. In fact, she was the one who spotted him across the room, thought he was cute, and moved toward him. Something inside of her was attracted to his goodness and his capacity for commitment and real love. I would venture to say that it was something healthy inside of her that was drawn to a healthy man and something unhealthy that was drawn to an unhealthy man. But no matter how many times we discussed it, she would still come back to the same question: Maybe I just don't love my husband.

Happily, most of my clients are able to work through the issues that prevent them from embracing their partner and their life. They're able to address the fear, process the grief, and ultimately take responsibility for the thoughts that are creating their anxiety and causing them to project the negativity onto their partner. It takes a lot of work, but the efforts are well worth it because they inevitably are able to embrace the goodness and blessings of the life they're living. As for this client, the outcome remains to be seen. I can only hope that through a commitment to a process of self-responsibility and the gift of grace, she'll be able to appreciate the wonderful man and potential for a great marriage that stand before her.
Read more here.

The essence of the alpha attitude

What is the central characteristic of the alpha male? Chateau Heartiste says it is "outcome indifference."
Aloof doesn’t mean silence. It means unconcern for women’s reactions. Nonchalance. Which is not the same as avoiding any romantically-charged, sexually-escalating interaction with women.

A commenter adds:
She actually has to prove herself worthy and work to get your affection. People intrinsically value things they have to work for.
Read more here.

Obama's tortured definitions of what is Islamic

Caroline Glick writes:
IS’s persecution of those who have had the misfortune to fall under its control is a blight on the human race. And so is the persecution committed by Iran’s puppets – the Assad regime in Syria, and its Lebanese terror army Hezbollah. Since the Syrian civil war began three years ago, the Iranian-controlled regime has killed somewhere between 120,000 and 200,000 people.

And this brings us back to Obama and his insistence that IS is not Islamic, but the Iranian regime is Islamic. How are we to understand this seeming anomaly?

Throughout his tenure in office, Obama has gone out of his way to mainstream Muslim extremists. This has taken the form of granting senior appointments to people aligned with the Muslim Brotherhood. For instance, amid a Congressional investigation into suspected leaks, Mohamed Elibiary, a senior fellow at the US Department of Homeland Security Advisory Council, resigned his position.

Just before his resignation, Elibiary tweeted that the rise of the caliphate is “inevitable.” In 2004 he spoke at a conference in Dallas celebrating the legacy of Iranian dictator Ayatollah Khomeini. As Robert Spencer has reported, the conference was titled, “A Tribute to a Great Islamic Visionary.”

Moreover, Obama had befriended radical Islamic leaders who openly support terrorism, including Turkish dictator Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the emir of Qatar, Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani.

And of course, as we see more and more clearly each day, the centerpiece of Obama’s foreign policy has been appeasing the Islamic Republic of Iran in the hope of achieving détente with the nuclear weapons pursuing state sponsor of terrorism.

In other words, Obama is neither an expert on Islam, nor a man moved by moral indignation.

He opposes IS because IS makes it hard for him to defend Islam from bad public relations. And he coos about the “Islamic Republic of Iran” because he is dedicated to his mission of whitewashing and mainstreaming the regime born of an Islamic revolution.
Read more here.

Millennials embrace a soft libertarianism

Matt Baauerlein writes that the Democrat
party’s grip on the young may be loosening.

The Senate contests were last fought in 2008, a presidential year, and here the plummet was startling. In North Carolina the rate at which young people voted Democratic fell to 54 percent this year from 71 percent in 2008. Virginia saw it slide to 50 percent from 71 percent. In Arkansas and Alaska, a majority of young voters went Republican.

A Pew Research Center survey released in March found that while 40 percent of millennials in 2006 considered themselves political independents, now 50 percent of them do.

When it comes to young voters, liberal politicians are victims of their culture-war success. They have pressed a laissez-faire posture in moral and private matters, and have won. But millennials have adopted not the posture of their liberal elders that fostered group identity (be it “union member,” “disenfranchised minority” or “F.D.R. Democrat”), but a soft libertarianism that makes individual preference king.

This doesn’t mean that the youth vote is going Republican. Party identity is meaningless to half of them, and that rate will rise. They pose a new kind of constituency, fluctuating and unpredictable, socially liberal but willing to back conservatives now and then, interested less in party ideologies than in actual individuals put forward as candidates, such as the cool young black senator in 2008. They form one-sixth to one-eighth of the electorate. If politicians take anything away from 2014, they must find a way to cultivate these voters that moves beyond party labels — indeed, beyond identity politics entirely.
Read more here.

Rand Paul: Long on posturing and short on heavy-lifting

John Yoo believes that Rand Paul
should stay right where he is — in the Senate. We should never put someone in the Oval Office who thinks that the United States can only use force when it is actually attacked, as he argues. That is the mindset that led the United States to ignore events in Europe as they spiraled out of control 100 years ago and to withdraw from the continent in the interwar years, leaving it to fascists who ultimately drew the U.S. back into another destructive war. It is a point of view that would have led to defeat in the Cold War and would handcuff the United States’ ability to protect itself by intervening against security threats before they arrive on our shores. It is a point of view that no serious candidate for president should hold and that no great president in our history has ever held.

Yoo further charges that Paul is
long on posturing and short on the heavy-lifting required to actually get legislation passed. If Senator Paul really believes that the war on the Islamic State is unconstitutional, then he should start by trying to cut off funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Syria. He will have his chance, though through no effort of his own, because the Obama administration is requesting additional funding from Congress for the operation.
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Obamacare is forcing the closure of rural hospitals

Jayne O'Donnell and Laura Ungar report:
Since the beginning of 2010, 43 rural hospitals — with a total of more than 1,500 beds — have closed, according to data from the North Carolina Rural Health Research Program. The pace of closures has quickened: from 3 in 2010 to 13 in 2013, and 12 already this year. Georgia alone has lost five rural hospitals since 2012, and at least six more are teetering on the brink of collapse. Each of the state's closed hospitals served about 10,000 people — a lot for remaining area hospitals to absorb.

Hospital officials contend that the Affordable Care Act's penalties for having to re-admit patients soon after they're released are impossible to avoid and create a crushing burden.

Rural hospital officials and others say that federal regulators — along with state governments — are now starving the hospitals they created with policies and reimbursement rates that make it nearly impossible for them to stay afloat.
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Departing from the standard of truth

Betsy Newmark writes:
It is time to judge policies by their results and not their benign intentions.
Betsy links to an article by William Voegeli, who writes:
For progressives, the success of government programs takes a backseat to their own moral grandstanding.

Liberals’ ideals make them more culpable, not less, for the fact that government programs set up to do good don’t reliably accomplish good. Doing good is often harder than do-gooders realize, but doing good is also more about the doing and the doer than it is about the good. Too often, as a result, liberals are content to treat gestures as the functional equivalent of deeds, and intentions as adequate substitutes for achievements.
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Who will win the suburbs?

Joel Kotkin writes:
You are a political party, and you want to secure the electoral majority. But what happens, as is occurring to the Democrats, when the damned electorate that just won’t live the way—in dense cities and apartments—that you have deemed is best for them?

As will become even more obvious in the lame duck years, the political obsessions of the Obama Democrats largely mirror those of the cities: climate change, gay marriage, feminism, amnesty for the undocumented, and racial redress. These may sometimes be worthy causes, but they don’t address basic issues that effect suburbanites, such as stagnant middle class wages, poor roads, high housing prices, or underperforming schools. None of these concerns elicit much passion among the party’s true believers.

Since 2011 the most rapid growth in country, as noted by Trulia’s Jed Kolko, continues to be in the suburbs and exurbs.

Nor is this trend likely to reverse in the near future. As Millennials head into their thirties, survey data suggests that most are looking for single family houses and most favor suburban locations where increasingly they will be joined by immigrants and minorities. And virtually all the fastest growth urban regions—Houston, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Phoenix, Charlotte—remain largely suburban in form and character, while growth is much slower in the more traditional legacy cities such as San Francisco, New York, or Boston.

None of this suggests that that Republicans can take suburban votes for granted. The suburbs are changing in ways that could help progressives, notably by becoming more heavily minority and Millennial. The preferences of these new arrivals will differ from those of previous suburban generations—particularly their views on immigration, the need for open space and cultural liberalism. That said, how likely is it that these new suburbanites will embrace progressive ideologues who continually diss the very places they have chosen to live?

The progressive “clerisy” and their developer allies may wish to destroy the suburban dream, but they will not be able to stay in office for long with such attitudes. America remains, and likely will remain, a predominately suburban nation for decades to come. This demographic reality means that whoever wins the suburban vote in 2016 and beyond will inherit the political future.
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Oregon voters decisively say no to drivers licences for illegals

Jonathan J. Cooper and Nicholas Riccardi write:
Even as Oregon voters were legalizing recreational marijuana and expanding Democratic majorities in state government, they decided by a margin of 66-34 to cancel a new state law that would have provided driver's licenses to people who are in the United States illegally.

Opponents barely gathered enough signatures to put the repeal question on the ballot. Immigrant rights groups outspent their opponents 10-1. Still, the measure failed in every county but the state's most liberal one, Multnomah, home to Portland. Even there it trailed significantly behind other Democratic candidates and causes.
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Feminism - a series of temper tantrums thrown by a small, privileged minority

David French writes that American feminists are characterized by their "appalling stupidity backed by their hysterical rage." Glenn Reynolds adds:
So how are things going for feminism? Well, last week, some feminists took one of the great achievements of human history — landing a probe from Earth on a comet hundreds of millions of miles away — and made it all about the clothes.

Yes, that's right. After years of effort, the European Space Agency's lander Philaelanded on a comet 300 million miles away. At first, people were excited. Then some women noticed that one of the space scientists, Matt Taylor, was wearing a shirt, made for him by a female "close pal," featuring comic-book depictions of semi-naked women. And suddenly, the triumph of the comet landing was drowned out by shouts of feminist outrage about ... what people were wearing. It was one small shirt for a man, one giant leap backward for womankind.

Thus, what should have been the greatest day in a man's life — accomplishing something never before done in the history of humanity — was instead derailed by people with their own axes to grind. As Chloe Price observed: "Imagine the ... storm if the scientist had been a woman and everyone focused solely on her clothes and not her achievements."
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French continues:
Feminism doesn’t really have a philosophy. It’s barely even an ideology. It’s mostly just a series of temper tantrums thrown by a small, privileged minority. And, unless it changes, it will soon be irrelevant.

Betsy Newmark adds:
Meanwhile, women are being sold into sexual slavery by ISIS, Iran executes a woman for killing her rapist in self defense, and Saudi Arabia routinely allows the rape and mistreatment of female migrant workers. Meanwhile, feminists are having meltdowns over the shirt that a scientist wore when he was interviewed after having landed a probe on a comet. Something is seriously wrong with these women if that is what it takes to outrage them.
Read more here.
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"Rent-seeking remoras" sucking off of the government Leviathan.

Obama’s legacy: government-induced chaos at home, moral equivalence abroad.

Victor Davis Hanson writes today:
The last but long gasp of the Obama administration is characterized not so much by deceit and incompetence as by growing chaos. Everything appears to be coming apart. The chariot of state now veers up and down with a terrified Phaethon clueless at the reins. Whether it is ISIS, Ebola, Putin, or Obamacare, the common strain is not simple incompetence, but a maladroitness born of intolerant ideological fundamentalism.

Have our government agencies ever seemed more corrupt or useless or both, staffed by political cronies and leftist zealots? What ever happened to the old IRS, GSA, VA, Secret Service, NSA, NASA, EPA, or Justice Department? All seem now mere appendages to a larger agenda of fundamentally transforming America.

We are mired in the slowest recovery in modern times, alleviated only by recently falling oil prices, which came despite, not because of, the president’s efforts. Fiscal sobriety is now redefined as a $600 billion annual deficit rather than the usual $1 trillion, again brought about by efforts other than Obama’s own. Yet the president has an unfortunate habit of taking credit for the good that he opposed and fobbing off on others responsibility for the bad that he embraced. There is interest in watching Obama’s press conferences, but mostly in appreciating how ingeniously he serially blames others for his own blunders.

I more or less divide the world into two camps: those who transcend their group identity, and those who cling to it as a redoubt. I do not feel any more intrinsic empathy with a Swedish-American in Minnesota by virtue of a shared ethnic heritage than I do with my Mexican-American neighbors and childhood friends. So why grant any such exemption to others, especially at this late date in the American experiment? This last election was about a cohort of new-generation women and minorities who won office without much reference to their tribe or gender, versus ossified activists who tried to gin up various pseudo-wars on women and minorities to disguise their own absence of an idea. The latter lost badly. When the U.S. is in extremis, the last thing we need is more silly talk about high cheekbones, a “wise Latina,” or “my people” from our elites, who project their own careerist strategies upon a fragile body politic. Racial ecumenism versus racial separatism should not be a hard call. So the next time a public figure starts droning on about “my people” or blaming his own inadequacies on race, gender, or tribe, we need to tune him out and turn the channel. That Al Sharpton went from a buffoon to a presidential adviser is a mirror of the age.

Benjamin Netanyahu may be many things but he is certainly neither a coward nor a chickens**t. Such smears are the final sad epitaphs to this administration’s failed relations with the Jewish state. It takes neither a genius nor a moralist to distinguish a liberal state that phones to warn apartment dwellers about the targeted areas of its attack, and the terrorist clique that shoots its own who try to follow such warnings and save themselves. Only a moral adolescent could fail to distinguish a tiny beleaguered democratic atoll from the surrounding violent seas of tribalism, misogyny, homophobia, religious fundamentalism, economic Neanderthalism, autocracy, and terrorism. It is not difficult to appreciate that the liberal society in question has led the way to global breakthroughs in everything from neurosurgery to drip irrigation, while the illiberal model surrounding it leads only in discovering ingenious variations on how to blow civilians up. Hating Israel, saying it is morally no better than its enemies, and damning its democracy as demonic proves also a good guide to what is insane in the present age.
These are just excerpts from VDH's latest brilliant piece. Please go here to read every paragraph.