* Are the rich making war on the poor?

In the current government shutdown, and the campaign to defund Obamacare, it certainly sounds that way to me.

Advertisements

* “Alice in Wonderland” had a Tea Party, too.

I’m angry. I don’t usually talk this way. But for better or worse, for the moment, I will.

I don’t know the numbers, and I’d welcome if someone would tell me. I also don’t understand how the numbers work here, and I’d also welcome if someone would tell me.

How is it that the Tea Party has not just hamstrung the Republican Party, but also the House as a whole?

Let’s say the President proposed that “tomorrow” be defined as “the day after today.”  Let’s also suppose there are 100 Tea Partiers in the House; of 235 Republicans; and that the remaining 200 House members are, you know, Them.

Obviously, the 100 Tea Partiers will oppose the President here, just as they do as to anything else.  But how can the remaining 135 Republicans, along with the 200 Them, fail to pass such a thing?

Call it kairotic, call it synchronicity, call it whatever.  I am working on the “substantial response” mentioned here, specifically just now on a passage about how the emotionally needy, the infantile, those who stomp their feet and throw tantrums like two-year olds, lack the wherewithal to learn problem-solving skills, being intransigent and unwilling and unable to compromise or negotiate.  I’m speaking there of what may be called the “underclass,” but the equal pertinence to the Tea Party leaves me speechless.

She discovered the opiate receptor

Candace B. Pert, neuroscientist who discovered opiate receptor, dies at 67

The significance of this discovery is not to be underestimated.

I would have supposed it occurred much earlier.  To put things in context, 1973 is the year I graduated high school.  So maybe that’s about right.

This opened the door to study of the whole world of receptors, with many important developments.  Discovery of the serotonin receptors was key to invention of the medicines now most widely prescribed, and most successful, for treatment of depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder.  Discovery of the insulin receptors has wholly changed research into diabetes.

At least from its Amazon page, Everything You Need to Know to Feel Go(o)d seems to deserve attention.

News roundup 08/10/13 – Tawana Brawley, Tavon White, more

Links within this post to headlines:
Tawana Brawley
Tavon White pleads guilty
Mercury and autism


Tawana Brawley hoax: Why she’s paying $627 a month
Trials of Tawana

I had not known about the defamation case.

Gang leader Tavon White pleads guilty in jail scheme

Study Sees No Link Between Mercury Exposure, Autistic Behavior

The search continues for an environmental scapegoat, for what to me appears to be a strictly genetic disease.

News roundup 08/03/13 – Home-schooled = Un-schooled? etc.

Links within this post, to the headlines:
Home-schooled = Un-schooled?
Baltimore City Schools’ BELL program
Exclusive: 4 in 5 in US face near-poverty, no work
Sexting: How typical is Anthony Weiner’s behavior?
2 ‘Real Housewives of NJ’ stars charged with fraud


Student’s home-schooling highlights debate over Va. religious exemption law

“By the time he was 16, [Josh Powell] had never written an essay. He didn’t know South Africa was a country. He couldn’t solve basic algebra problems.”

He took three years of remedial courses at a community college before obtaining admission to Georgetown at age 21.

“Most of all, he worries about his siblings: There are 11. One, old enough to be well into middle school, can’t read, Josh Powell said.”

City’s summer school program sees results

This is at the diametric pole from the just-previous item. See also the previous post, D.C. to implement 9th-grade rescue plan.

Exclusive: 4 in 5 in US face near-poverty, no work

I don’t need to comment on that.

Sexting: How typical is Anthony Weiner’s behavior?

This quote struck me:

” ‘ In the case of Anthony Weiner, and other partnered people who sext with non-partners, it strikes me as a kind of pornography, where the drive is toward excited, impersonal sex rather than true intimacy.

” ‘ With Weiner, it’s a case of pornography meets narcissism. ‘ ”

Some folk may be incapable of “true intimacy,” but I don’t see how a life of strictly “excited, impersonal sex” can bring real gratification.

2 ‘Real Housewives of NJ’ stars charged with fraud

As little as I know about Joe and Teresa Giudice, it seems to me this could not have happened to a more deserving couple.

I take some gratification from this news, in that rarely in this life do I really feel I see justice done.

I anticipate having a lot to say about this in the future.

The Zimmerman Verdict: Get Over It

Zimmerman protesters raid Wal-Mart, stop freeway

The world will not turn itself upside down to please you.

Neither will the law.

Neither will the facts.

Neither will the fact that the law is what it is.

Nor the fact that, under American law, a jury verdict is prima facie (Go ahead, look it up!) correct.

Under the rules of due process, the lawful evidence was presented to a competent jury. This was not so with TV news or radio talk shows.

Moreover, in civil suits, the standard of proof is “a preponderance of the evidence,” but in criminal trials — all criminal trials — it is much higher, “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This standard is so high I wonder that any criminal conviction is ever obtained. Thus in a very similar local case here in Baltimore, an off-duty police officer was recently acquitted in the strangling death of a black teen.
Continue reading

News roundup 07/27/13 – Serial killers, Biggest problem with workforce, A new Bosnia?

Links within this post, to the headlines:
The Single Biggest Problem With America’s Labor Force
New serial killer in Cleveland
Troubling official statements in Burma violence
Report Finds Gradual Fall in Female Genital Cutting in Africa
T. Rowe Price raises downtown safety concerns
Rae Dawn Chong Blasts Oprah Winfrey


The Single Biggest Problem With America’s Labor Force

Underemployment

Bodies of Three Women Found Wrapped in Garbage Bags in Fetal Position in Cleveland Neighborhood

I had never heard of Anthony Sowell before.  I have to wonder whether the ethnicity of his victims plays any role in his relative obscurity as compared to, say, Ted Bundy.

Radical monk unhurt in bomb blast

Troubling quotations:
He is the chief proponent of a movement known as 969, which reformist President Thein Sein’s office has described as a “symbol of peace”.
* * *
Reuters investigations in two of the hotspots of unrest – Rakhine state and the central city of Meikhtila – have revealed the violence was on both occasions fanned by monks who led Buddhist mobs.
* * *
The president’s office, which says it wants to foster peace, tolerance and unity in ethnically diverse Myanmar, has described Wirathu as “a son of Lord Buddha”.

Previous post: “Sitra Achra, the Flipside

Report Finds Gradual Fall in Female Genital Cutting in Africa

Those who don’t know what the term means can consult this Wikipedia article.  In many nations it’s a routine practice to take a razor and shave off a girl’s clitoris, normally in early childhood.  As a result, when she becomes a woman, she will have no access to sexual gratification.  All sexual intercourse, then, is for her in effect no different from rape; all sexual gratification in relationships is the sole privilege of her male “partners.”

The report finds a generation gap in attitudes and practice:  younger women in some places are less likely to have been victims of this procedure, and also less likely to approve of it.  Yet the quotation unsettles me: “We need to create conditions so they can act on their beliefs.”  As reprehensible as the practice is, I am not sure Western folk have the right to impose Western values on anyone.

T. Rowe Price raises safety concerns as it weighs headquarters options

But Elspeth Reeve seems to me to want us to believe there is no crime in America.

Rae Dawn Chong Blasts Oprah Winfrey In A Recent Radio Interview

I never heard of Rae Dawn Chong before, and am no particular fan of Oprah Winfrey.  But for Ms. Chong to spew this language in any public forum about anyone degrades her mightily in my esteem.

I never encountered the term “field N—–” before.  Now I grasp that it is the counter-partner to the term “house Negro,” which Mohamad at the shelter used to use to dismiss the President.  The “house N—–” was a slave suitable to work in the master’s house, given her or his propensity to seemly rather than unseemly manners and conduct.  The “field N—–” would be kept in the fields, given his or her opposite propensities.

No slave has toiled on a plantation in this country since 1865, and it offends me to hear such terms used to disparage anyone.  The N-word itself simply perpetuates the slave mentality, and diminishes everyone who uses and hears it.  IMO no one has any right to use it.