“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Neda of Persia

Neda will not be sailing today, or any other day. She will never know the joy and sorrow of living a long life with the man she loves – having orgasms, making babies, raising children. She will never feel the wind blowing through her long black hair or the exhilaration of the spray of salt water on her face as she turns into the sunset...



  1. - Life and Death in Tehran -

    I received this from an anonymous Iranian student:
    “I will participate in the demonstrations tomorrow. Maybe they will turn violent. Maybe I will be one of the people who is going to be killed. I’m listening to all my favorite music. I even want to dance to a few songs. I always wanted to have very narrow eyebrows. Yes, maybe I will go to the salon before I go tomorrow!”

    And she concludes: “I wrote these random sentences for the next generation so that they know we were not just emotional under peer pressure. So they know that we did everything we could to create a better future for them. So they know that our ancestors surrendered to Arabs and Mongols but did not surrender to despotism. This note is dedicated to tomorrow’s children.”

    I bow my head to the youth of Iran, the youth that is open-eyed, bold and far more numerous than the near-beardless vigilantes.

    One such youth was Neda, whose music teacher, Hamid Panahi, was at her side when she died. I asked Panahi if she said anything after the bullet struck.
    “Yes,” he told me,
    “She said, ‘Mr. Panahi, I burnt.’ ”

  2. Yes, there is a lot of tragedy in the world. The pertinent question is how best to deal with it and prevent further tragedy from occurring. Will federally enforced dress codes help achieve such noble goals? I don't think so.

  3. Like BHO, you project limitless empathy, Ash.
    Like a Rock.
    Or a Pickup Truck.

  4. So, Doug, do you think the time is right to mount an invasion of Iran and give them the government we wish they had?

  5. of action that you are.

  6. There may have been some REMFs pass through that paradise, in Missouri, Piecekeeper.

    But not all of them were.

    They kept speaking of a 'successful' "Career Path" and how being a Drill Sergeant was intergral to that. I just had to "No thanks", to living three years in Missouri. Where it snowed on the Easter Sunday that I was there.

    Not the Fun, Travel, Adventure I had in mind, for my 'career' path.

    If I'd been looking for some sort of 'career', I'd have never joined the Army, in the first place.

  7. So, it seems that Steve Jobs was experiencing liver failure, and has recieved a transplant.
    This being the medical reason he took a leave of absence from Apple. Not because he was suffering from HIV/AIDS, as mat so emotionally told us was the case.

    Guess he must have lost some money, on Apple stock. To have libeled Mr Jobs in that vindictive a manner.

  8. Yesterday, the chosen one informed us that CO2 was "polluting" our water. This from a Harvard Grad, and POTUS.

    I guess he's afraid we'll all be drinking sparkling water, or something.

    There are very, very few "good" politicians, or preachers. We got incredibly lucky 235 years, ago.

    I guess that was a "lucky break" for the world as a whole.

    Long live the "Constitution of the United States of America."

  9. My Dear Ash,

    The ancient Greeks often equated tragedy with comedy taken to the absurd. We moderns (e.g. Daniel Webster & Samuel Johnson) have introduced the element of serendipity or misfortune. In that vein, a tsunami is tragic.

    Murder, Ash, is not tragic; it is simply murder. Nuance is not required to admit the fact or to demand the retribution stemming therefrom.

    Of course, in admitting the truth in this instance, you could no longer straddle the fence. You would have to pick a side and live with the consequences of doing so. Succinctly, Ash, you would have to be a moral man.

    Neda will not be avenged by an American invasion of Iran. That is childish, disingenuous, puerile, sophomoric obfuscation. What the United States can do (and should have been doing under public law) is to make every effort to undermine this murderous regime. Consider, Ash: A regime which will not scruple the murder of its own children will not hesitate in wantonly applying that sanction elsewhere.

    Ash, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

  10. Robert D Kaplan, writing in the WaPo

    Iran is so central to the fate of the Middle East that even a partial shift in regime behavior -- an added degree of nuance in its approach to Iraq, Lebanon, Israel or the United States -- could dramatically affect the region. Just as a radical Iranian leader can energize the "Arab street," an Iranian reformer can energize the emerging but curiously opaque Arab bourgeoisie. This is why the depiction of presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi as but another radical, albeit with a kinder, gentler exterior than President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, completely misses the point.

    As in the former Soviet Union, change in Iran can come only from the inside; only an insider, be it a Mousavi or a Mikhail Gorbachev, has the necessary bona fides to allow daylight into the system, exposing its flaws. Only a staunch supporter of the Islamic Republic such as Mousavi would have been trusted to campaign at all, even as he is now leading a democratic movement that has already undermined the Brezhnevite clerical regime. It is unfinished business of the Cold War that we have been witnessing the past few days. The Iranian struggle for democracy is now as central to our foreign policy as that for democracy in Eastern Europe in the 1980s.
    It is crucial that we reflect on an original goal of regime change in Iraq. Anyone who supported the war must have known that toppling Saddam Hussein, a Sunni Arab -- whether it resulted in stable democracy, benign dictatorship or sheer chaos -- would strengthen the Shiite hand in the region. This was not seen as necessarily bad. The Sept. 11 terrorists had emanated from the rebellious sub-states of the sclerotic Sunni dictatorships of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, whose arrogance and aversion to reform had to be allayed by readjusting the regional balance of power in favor of Shiite Iran. It was hoped that Iran would undergo its own upheaval were Iraq to change. Had the occupation of Iraq been carried out in a more competent manner, this scenario might have unfolded faster and more transparently. Nevertheless, it is happening.

    He then talks of the historic alliances between Jews and Persians, aligned against the Arabs.

    Iran, ironically, has a better chance to dominate the region under dynamic democratic rule than it has ever had under its benighted clerisy. And that could be very good for the United States.

    I think he may be right about Iran dominating the area, under dynamic democratic leadership. Which is why, well one reason, the US is standing back.

    We are accustomed to the status que, and there are few other boogiemen available to justify the World Police.

  11. A personal note...

    To the lovely Neda whose life was snuffed out in an instant by the forces of EVIl that exist in our world...

    To Gilad, the Israeli soldier who was kidnapped IN ISRAEL by these same forces...

    To the UNnamed thousands in Israel

    To the UNnamed thousands in Lebanon, who have been snuffed out by hezbollah

    To the UNnamed MILLIONS that have been murdered in Iran by the mullahs

    and on and on..

    I cant even wrap my head around the places, people and objects destroyed by BOTH the SHia of Iran and the Sunni of Arabia

    From Darfur to Bombay.. From Jerusalem to New York, From Cairo to Ramallah...

    death sentences administrated by Hamas roving bands of vice police against their own...

    From flinging fatah members off roofs, to salmond rushie fatwa's...

    TO ASH, Brian (my ex friend), Danny (my ex friend) and to those that do not see that absolute evil of islamic nutjobs around the world...

    F*CK you...

    I have had it...

    Yes I advocate war.. We are at war whether you like to admit it or not...

    I purpose the following:

    The at once NUKING of the Black Rock of Mecca...

    The at once destruction of Iran's military and industrial complex (including it's navy, army and republican guards)

    The at once deportation of all Moslems arrested for any violent crime

    The at once demand that the islamic world allow christians, hindus, bahai, buddists, jews & wiccans full property rights and powers that Islamic peoples have in islamic lands, IF NOT? the closure of all Islamic schools and mosques in the world.

    DO i sound crazy? xenaphobic? racist?

    to bad...

    The WORLD cannot allow a mutant, murderous faith to infect the world under the prozac notion of freedom of faith...

    We would not allow gang bangers to claim that full hoods are part of their faith..

    We would not allow Klansman to claim white sheets are "religious" garb...

    We do not allow "whites" only property sales...

    It's time for Islam to GROW UP and be dealt with...

    Islam's SYMBOL is the sword...

    THose that LIVE PRAY AND PREACH by the sword shall get our boot up their asses....

  12. doug, I think, describing the proportional share that the Federal Government allots to military and non-military spending, 'then' to now.

    While the Federal share of GDP has remained in the 18 to 21% range, the entire time.

    Given those trendlines the folk that are supported by the Military-Industrial Complex of the United States really need a boogieman, more than they desire peace and tranquility.

    The last thing they 'really' want, a competitive Iran on the whirled stage.

    That could also be said of the Europeons, maybe even more so.

  13. Not sure what your point is.
    My concern is a certainty:
    The Welfare State Budgetary Expansion is steering directly toward BANKRUPTCY, sooner, rather than later.
    P-51's did not produce babies,
    but the baby boom did occur.
    Boomers are now entering retirement.
    The Ponzi Schemes heading directly toward the brick wall of reality.

  14. Obama's accomplishments will make a mockery of that 21% ceiling, pronto.

  15. (WIRED) -- The Obama Administration will lend Tesla Motors $465 million to build an electric sedan and the battery packs needed to propel it. It's one of three loans totaling almost $8 billion that the Department of Energy awarded Tuesday to spur the development of fuel-efficient vehicles.

    Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that the Department of Energy is also lending $5.9 billion to Ford to retool factories in five states. Nissan will receive $1.6 billion to refurbish a factory in Tennessee to produce electric cars.

    The loans are the first awarded under the $25 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program to help automakers offset the cost of retooling to build eco-friendlier cars that are at least 25 percent more fuel-efficient than 2005 models

  16. Man, we are well, and truly . . . . doomed.

    Watch This.

    Your Tax Dollars at work.

  17. What's up with that accent?
    She ain't Anglo or Hispanic!
    Would be fun to see her resume.

  18. I recongnize your point, doug, and do not much dispute it. What I'm saying is that there is a core need for a functional military.
    Yet there is also an undeniable trend to a smaller force structure.

    As the Air Force's poor performance illustrates, nuclear arms specialties are not in the forefront of career paths, in the US military. Exemplifying that mega-death from above is not considered a premier policy option.

    To stop an even more radical decline, in the share of defense spending of the Federal budget, there needs to be an 'other', an enemy.

    The idea that the enemy is Islam, and/or all Muslims, has been throughly rejected by US. There being bi-partisan agreement on that score.

    The Sauds and the Pakis, they are US allies, the Chi-coms our business partners. Western Europe is nuetered and the Russians, they still are flying clones of B-29s.

    The US is assimulating Central America, as the 20 million of them illegally in the US so amply illustrates. While the numbers of Central Americans in the United States, legally, expands exponentally.

    From the Isthmus to the Artic
    One Land, One People

    There are no boogiemen allowed to be found, there.

    There are a large segments of the Federal Socialist and EU constituentcies that would be displaced, if Iran joined the whirled, as a free and competitive player.

  19. By JASON DEAN.
    BEIJING -- The Chinese government formally arrested Liu Xiaobo, one of the country's most prominent dissidents, in its latest clamp down on dissent in a year of politically-sensitive anniversaries.

    Mr. Liu, who had been detained without charges for more than six months, is accused of "agitation activities aimed at subversion of the government and overthrowing of the socialist system," the official Xinhua news agency reported Wednesday, citing the Beijing Public Security Bureau. The 53-year-old was detained on Dec. 8, just ahead of the publication of Charter 08, a manifesto for sweeping political change in China that he helped write. His formal arrest makes it much more likely that Mr. Liu will later be sentenced to prison, according to Chinese lawyers and human rights activists

  20. US-Israel talks in Paris aborted.

    A meeting between Israel's prime minister and a senior US envoy has been cancelled amid growing differences over settlement building in the West Bank.

    Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot said the US put off the meeting in response to Benjamin Netanyahu's refusal to heed US demands to halt settlement activity.

    But Mr Netanyahu's aides say it was the prime minister who cancelled Thursday's meeting with George Mitchell in Paris

  21. Individual self interest drives policy, that is what Mr Bolton said.

    There is little support, amongst the Federal Socialists, for a free Iran. That support, where it exists is mostly rhetorical and not functional.

  22. Will the whirled remeber "Neda of Persia longer than we remember Mary Ann Vecchio or even more pointedly Jeffery Miller?

  23. We have a President that believes CO2 is "Polluting" our water, and an EPA that thinks it takes 400 acres of corn to produce a gallon of ethanol.

    What could go wrong?

  24. It taking forty years for the "Left" of the Vietnam Era to gain dominant control of the Federal leviathan.
    The balance out of whack, again, as it was in '72.

    But still trending to the "Left", the "Right" in the Bush era excelerating the process to the point that Obama's spending proposals are given serious debate, with some version or another of greater national debt and ever more localized Federal controls, guarenteed.

  25. Face it, rufus, the lands of the United States will be most productive under centralized Federal control, rather than privatized, localized ownership.

    The Ethanol Czarina knows the deal.

    It's better this way, bobbie said so. He was a farmer, on Federal grant lands, so he knows.

    As many times as we have penciled the numbers, you'd think that the folks in charge would have the intellectual curiosity to figure it out, for themselves.

    It really is a short learning curve. doug's historic complaint, not wanting US to be reliant upon the weather, for a sizable segment of our energy needs. Never that the process would not work or could not be implemented.
    Liquifying coal, he thinks, is more productive a process to pursue.

    But the Czarina does not even have that basic an understanding of the issues or processes involved.

  26. I am more sympathetic to the ag based avenue, but recongnize that it should not be an exclusive alternative to imported oil.
    Ethanol, as a gasoline additive, is one of the critical pieces of the alternative energy mosaic.
    Cutting gasoline with 30% ethanol increasing existing stocks or future production capacities just that much more.

    We need to supplement the 2 million barrels of oil we import, per day, as quickly as possible.

    We have not yet begun, and are not about to. So knows the Czarina.

  27. The problem is, "the average Republican has an IQ of about 35."

    The Republicans can't seem to figure out that in order to "Lead," one must "Get Elected."

    At a Critical juncture in the campaign John McCain announced that he would hold a Very Important Town Hall. The FIRST question was from a young gal with a health condition. It seems she couldn't get it "treated," in that she had no Health Insurance. She couldn't "Work" because she was sick, and she couldn't get health insurance on her own because she had a "Pre-Existing Condition."

    John McCain told this Unemployed young gal that he would give her a "Tax Credit," so she could buy the insurance that no one would sell her, anyway.

    Any young female that voted for McCain should definitely be in the market for a "head" transplant. Ditto any poor, undereducated person of whatever race.

    Republicans have to figure out that there are More poor, than there are Rich. And, they Vote.

    Farmers vote, Big-Time, and Agriculture is the number one employer in the U.S. McCain just kept hammering on Ethanol. He made a Big Deal out of going to Iowa to Hammer Ethanol.

    The stupid son of a bitch not only lost Iowa, and Ohio, he managed to lose Indiana. No Republican loses Indiana!

    The Republican party has a lot of good businessmen. We could have fixed health care without too much sweat. It, honestly, might not have cost much more than we're wasting, now. But, it wasn't to be.

    The Pubs aren't smart enough to figure out where the votes are, and how to get them. 35? That might be too high.

  28. Remembrance

    “The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced…”
    ___Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg, PA, 19 Nov 1863

    ...or, in the words of an old spiritual, "This little light of mine...I'm gonna let it shine."


  29. Actually, Rat, we imported 10.56 Million Barrels/Day last week (crude oil, and products.)

    We're producing about 700,000 barrels/day of ethanol. Iowa St did a regression analysis that concluded that the presence of that 700,000 bbl/day of ethanol saved us about $0.35 gal on our gasoline at the pump, last year.

    We use about 140 Billion gallons of gasoline/yr, so that #0.35 gal would have saved us about $49 Billion Dollars, overall.

  30. I do not count Canadian and Mexican amongst the "imports", rufus.

    Beyond that, while I do not dispute that we are producing 700,000 barrels per day, I would argue it is not nearly enough.
    2 million per day should be the next incremental goal.

    I'd also argue that ethanol is currently produced in the US, with subsidy, with one of the least effective crops available.
    Energy from corn, also being a human foodstuff, is blamed for increases in food costs.

    While the reality of this is certainly a debatable point, the common, uneducated perception of it is not.

  31. Well, the fact is we shipped about $5 Billion out of country, and a lot of it went to Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, et al.

    Somewhere around $700,000,000.00 Every day.

    Then, of course, we spent another $Billion a Day, or so, to "Protect the supply."

    I'm glad I get my fuel from Mississippi.

  32. Upon reading the supplement line line again, I find I misquote myself.

    The original intent was to say we should supplement another 2 million barrels of imports, not, as it reads that we import just 2 million barrels per day.

  33. They're going to allow us 1 Million Barrels/Day from Corn, Rat. The rest we'll have to get from other sources.

    Actually, corn isn't as bad as a lot of people have made it out to be. The Price of Field Corn is only up a little less than $0.03/lb since we started producing ethanol in quantity.

    Your food bill went up about $0.75 on a $100.00 expenditure last year. And, your gasoline bill Went Down about $5.00/week. Looks like a pretty good trade-off to me.

  34. My point being, rufus, is that if we swithed feedstocks from corn to switchgrass or sweet sorghum the gallon per acre capacity of the land now utilized for production of ethanol would soar.

    We'd need more distillery capacity, pronto!

  35. I meant to say, "Your Food bill went up $0.75 on $100.00 as a result of ethanol. Your food bill was, in total, up about $5.00.

  36. Moving my shopping from Safeway to Walmart saved me much more than that, rufus.

  37. I'm "Positive" on switchgrass, and other forms of cellulosic, Rat.

    Poet says they can convert Corn Cobs for about $2.50/gal (unsubsidized) right now, and figure that by the time their new Cellulosic plant is operating in 2011 they'll have it down to about $2.00/gal (unsubsidized.)

    Range will be producing cellulosic from forestry waste in their Soperton, Ga plant early next year. Iogen/Shell are selling their wheat straw ethanol in Shell's Canadian gas stations as we speak.

  38. We'll get there, Rat. I said three years, ago, that we were in for several years of a real bumpy ride.

    Ethanol has some Powerful Enemies. Exxon, GMA (grocery manufacturers - read: Kellogs,) Saudi Arabia, Fox (owned by Saudi Prince,) CARB (Ca Air Resources Board - full of oil execs, and money,) etc.

    Thing is, the average Joe isn't a "rocket scientist," but his intuition is that it's probably better to spend the money with his neighboring corn farmer than it is to finance Jihadis.

  39. With westhawk moving to Small Wars Journal, I find their Daily briefing to be most informative.

  40. ...Before Gen. Stanley McChrystal had even taken over in Afghanistan, he made a call to McKinley, leader of the US National Guard. He told him that contributions from the Guard would be crucial to the US mission there. Gen. David Petraeus, head of Central Command, has already suggested they could use more of the agribusiness development teams - manned by National Guardsmen from rural areas - that train Afghans in modern farming techniques. Thirteen already are in place. And that’s just the start for McKinley. The head of Africa Command recently chatted with him about adding Kenya to the growing list of nations in the Guard’s State Partnership Program. And McKinley also sees opportunities for more collaborations in the European Command territory. All this activity, however, raises a question: Between home-state obligations, frequent deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, and a growing list of training partnerships with foreign nations, when does the National Guard reach its breaking point?

  41. According to the U.S. government’s Energy Information Agency (EIA), Iran’s oil fields suffer natural production declines of 8-11% per year, constituting 400,000-700,000 barrels per day of crude oil production lost each year.
    Steady or declining production combined with rising domestic consumption will mean falling net Iranian oil exports, reaching zero by perhaps 2015. Iran requires foreign partners in its energy sector to avoid this outcome. Yesterday’s AP story about rising political risk for investors in Iran darkens the outlook for Iran’s financial and economic stability

    Posted by Robert Haddick

  42. Gasoline got Cheap, and Money got Tight at a really bad time, Rat.

    And then came a 50 yr (actually, more like a 15 yr) flood in Iowa, and the W Corn belt. It was a recipe for disaster.

    Add on top of that CEOs of companies like Verasun that thought it was a good idea to "short" corn all the way from $3.00 to $8.50, and then "Lock in" at the highest prices in history - well, it's lucky there's an ethanol industry left to expand.

    The guys like Jeff Broin, of Poet, saved the day. Having come from a farm background, they knew how dangerous that game was. They just bought their corn, and sold their ethanol, and when it all shook out they were okay.

  43. The problem with Afghanistan is, it's a Box of Rocks. About all you can grow there is poppies.

    Before they send farmers, they need to send "Hydrologists." Until they can find some water they'll just be "wastin their seeds."

  44. Then, they can sends a few hundred train-loads of money. Irrigation is expensive. And, John Deeres go for $50,000.00, and up.

  45. Cheaper than a Stryker, a John Deere tractor, though both are painted shades of green.

  46. Heh, I just flashed on an image of a John Deere with a Fifty Caliber on the hood.

    Them farm boys will be beggin to drive the tractor.

  47. Two years, ago, we planted about 91 Million acres of corn.

    This year we're down to about 82 Million acres of corn.

    This, in spite of the fact we're producing about 500,000 Barrels/day MORE ethanol.

    Oh, and corn prices are down over 50% from this time last year.

    We were supposed to plant all that corn, which was supposed to cut into the bean crop, which means Brazil was supposed to cut down the Amazon Rainforest to make way for the soybeans they would need to plant to make up for all of our beans going into corn. Never mind that Brazil has 150 Million Acres lying fallow in the Cerrado - that's where all the soybeans are grown.)

    Well, so much for all that. Our corn planting is Down. Our Bean planting is UP. Brazil's bean planting is Down 5 Million Acres in the last five years, and Not One "Expert" in the land got it Right.

    Corn Acres Down, Beans Up

  48. Joshua fought the battle
    at the walls of Jericho.

    He had to get inside those walls,
    but how he did not know.

    One blast from all his trumpets
    and ol' Joshua had no fears.

    The walls had been constructed
    by some Army Engineers

    Essayons, y'all.

  49. Let me see, their motto
    don't tell yeah...

    Victory Through Skill
    . :)

    Close, but no cigar.

    My battalion crest said, "Skill is Strength," but we were a construction unit (REMFs to the unwashed), so maybe there's another motto out there.


    Leonard Wood, isn't that the one where they train the REMFs?

    Heh. Nice try. No cigar for you either.

  50. You see, this is where the "Experts" messed up. They didn't listen to Rufus.

    They read that you could get a little more than 400 gallons of ethanol/acre. Ol Rufus gave'm the figures that showed that once you took the coproduct DDGS into account it was more like 700 gallons/acre (heading quickly to 800.)

    Anyhoo, armed with all the "knowledge that wasn't so" they calculated that we would need to plant way more corn than was really necessary.

    The fertilizer companies heard it all and deduced that they could raise the cost of fertilizer to $1,000.00/ton. The stock boys said, "Whoopee," and bought a bunch of Potash.

    The farmers said, "Fuck You," and planted beans.

    Our bean producers are the most efficient in the world, so they drove the Brazilian beans onto the sidelines.

    Bottom line: It's the age of Monsanto. Nothing more, nothing less. When the little gal from DTN was on TV this time last year talking about $12.00 Corn, I told you that the farmers were liable to make a very good corn crop. They did. 154 bu/acre.

    This year will be about 160+.

    Never, ever sell American Agriculture short. It's the way to "ruination."

  51. ...and Not One "Expert" in the land got it Right!

    Quote for the day.

    Good comments above, rufus and rat.

    We're still gonna need petroleum, though, and the rig count is just falling off like a Pocono ski slope. It ain't for lack of the's the damned politicians, policy wonks and greenies.

  52. My rig count comment needs updating. US rigs have surged +23 in the week between 12-19 June 09. Canadian rigs are up +35 for that period. The telling numbers, though, are that US rigs were down -1007 YOY on 19Jun09. Digest that info in relation to falling world oil prices, tapping the floating inventory finally, and the economic meltdown. Small wonder the drillers took a vacation.


    Another correction: Pocono ski slopes are a poor analogy. Try Heavenly Valley, Sun Valley, or Telluride. Shoulda knowed better than to use a ski slope whose lift was a rope tow.

  53. Godiva was a lady
    who thru Coventry did ride,
    to show the local citizens
    her alabaster hide.

    A most observant gentleman,
    an engineer of course,
    was the only one who noticed
    that Godiva rode a horse

    Essayons, y'all!

  54. breaking news...

    Israel's Channel 2 television reported on Wednesday night that the sale of Israeli UAV's to Russia is back on in exchange for a Russian agreement not to sell the S-300 anti-missile defense system to Iran.
    Israel Television Channel 2 News reported this evening that, with the consent of the U.S., Israel is going through with the sale of advanced unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to Russia in exchange for a freeze on the Russian sale to Iran of the S-300, one of the most advanced multi-target anti-aircraft-missile systems in the world today.

    According to Channel 2 News, the sale is very unusual as Russia does not buy foreign weapons systems.

  55. John McCain was a total patsy. The liberal newspapers for months ran articles about questions pertaining to McCain's birth. He released his birth certificate. In addition to that there was this:

    On April 10, 2008 Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) introduces Senate Resolution S. Res. 511 to “recognize that John Sidney McCain is a natural born citizen.” The resolution is allegedly meant to clarify that McCain is eligible to be President even though he was born in Panama. Because McCain’s parents were both Americans and he was born in Panama because his father was stationed there while in the military, existing law already covers McCain and he is eligible to be President. McCaskill’s resolution thus serves no purpose – except that language is included to try and provide a “blanket cover” for other foreign born candidates without military backgrounds, in order to enable Obama to be eligible to be President. This is the language that Obama inserted “Whereas previous presidential candidates were born outside of the United States of America and were understood to be eligible to be President;”

    This Clause has no particular relevance to McCain [The language is inserted by Obama.][301,303]


    303 #

    McCain didn't get it.

  56. Didn't Doug share that link to the Girl from Ipanema not so long ago? Where was that article, the NY Times?

  57. Quite a while ago.
    I'll search the archive.

  58. Apparently, the girl from Ipanema is still in Brazil; the governor's visit was to Argentina.

  59. Apparently, the girl from Ipanema is still in Brazil; the governor's visit was to Argentina.

  60. I stand corrected.

    Barkeep! Bring Whit a cigar. A rum soaked crook.

    Crooks for everybody.