“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."

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Lancaster Pennsylvania gets it right for the 4th of July

Super timing  Lancasters Long's Park Concert on July 2nd 2006. 1812 Overture with authentic Civil War Cannons. 


  1. You don't get a rush out of this you ain't breathin.

  2. Parades are much more difficult to manage than fireworks shows and carnivals.

    Firt there are the folk that volunteer to be the parade itself, they have to build their floats, practice marching and get their costumes ready.
    This was historically done around the civic organizations of the town.
    The YMCA, and W, schools, the volunteer fire department, the Daughters of the American Revolution, Boy Scouts, Elks, Lions, the bowling league and them fellas that wore the Fez caps and rode the little bikes.

    Most of those clubs and organizations are on the wane, now.
    Civic responsibility has had its' meaning changed.

    boobie bemoans the election of Obama and the change in the country that his election represents, but denies the symptoms for what they are.

    I'm not sure it is a lack of patriotism, but the modern era of shows and carnivals, that has displaced the era citizen participation and involvement, has produced a different kind of citizen than that we've had in the past.

    The electorate mirrors the particpents and audience of the events on the 4th of July, now as before.

    The differences are telling, they are real.

    Draw your own conclusion as to what it means and portends.
    boobie did, then he projected his intellectual conclusion and blamed me for it.

  3. A Deer, I tells ya, a genyeine Deer.

  4. "Independence?"

    Did you know that ALL American "Presidents" are related?

    Did you know that 34, according to "Burke's Peerage," trace their ancestry back to Charlemagne (thus, Charles Martel, and the Merovingian Kings?)

    Presidential Bloodlines. The "purest" bloodline has won every single American Presidential Election?

  5. Barack Obama is the 11th Cousing to George W. Bush.

  6. Of the parades around here, in the older days, I recall much participation by the Greek houses. Delta Gamma, Sigma Nu, Sigma Chi, that sort of thing. This has dropped off a lot, in fact we really have no parades anymore, except when the Lionel Hampton time comes around, and I don't think we had one last year.

    My sis was a Delta Gamma, then she had the good sense to come home, and study. I remember her saying "They're all a bunch of ditsy broads."

    My brother was in a fraternity too, for a year, then he married his high school sweetie, and took off to medical school, never to return.

    I think there is a reason for this. In the old days, the Greek houses really were kind of the university. That's where the kids lived, that were going to college.

    I think as time has passed, and we've had more and more kids going to school, we've had more kids living in tax payer built dorms, and, off campus.

    I think if you drive through most of the old university towns across America, you will see the same thing, the Greek houses clustered around the core of the old campus. That's the way it was.

    Now, here at our school, we even have co-habitational dorms, where the boys and girls live in the same rooms, share the same bathrooms.

    I'm not sure what I think of this, being an older type of fellow. When I went to the u of w, I lived in a single room motel room out on Aurora Avenue.

    And, I was happy enough, though a little lonely for my missing girl friend. I got to know a couple of English professors pretty well, and they taught me a thing or two, some optimism like I have been trying to pass on to our depressed Rat these many months, though it is truly like trying to pack pork up Mt. Parnassus.

    I think we have less of the old fraternal organizations than we used to have. There is a ready explanation for this. We now have Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security.

    In the old days, around my home town, there were many fraternal organizations, that would step in when all else failed.

    I don't really think there is less patriotism around now, it's just different.

    When I talk to, and get to know, all these kids that come through my few apartment units, they all seem bright, upright and spunky, to me.

    So I think our country, despite it's current situation, has a good future ahead.

    All these young kids are pretty good, in my view.

  7. Hmm, isn't This interesting. It seems the (half) black man has Purer Bloodlines than his cousin the War Hero.

  8. Rufus, I got to tell you, I don't believe a word of that.

    If I had the money, I could prove that both you and I were the grandsons of the Queen of England.

  9. And, from the look of some the progeny, I think we're better off just being Rufus and Bob.

  10. Burkes Peerage is pretty good, Bob. They've been doing it a long time.

  11. Dr Khalid Abdulla Tario Al Mansour got Obama in Harvard.

    He seems to have been representing Saudi Prince Alaweed (you know, the guy that owns Fox News.)

  12. Of course, since he got out of Harvard The Crown Family has been pumping him enormous amounts of "Cash."

  13. I’m reminded of a sign on my parents’ refrigerator, ‘Don’t explain; your friends don’t need it, and your enemies won’t believe you anyway.’

    Sarah shows us once again the present political circus doesn’t deserve a person of her caliber.

    May she find tranquility and satisfaction however this plays out.

  14. I think she just has the wrong bloodlines.

  15. Probably no Merovingian there.

  16. Those Civil War cannons are LOUD. Something that never gets conveyed quite right in movies, probably out of concern for the audience's ear drums.

  17. It's Independence day...

    AND on this Day Honduras shows us what it's about..

    To Obama, Chavez, Castro, The Mullahs of Iran?

    Go to Hell.....

  18. My 4th of July won't be complete until we demonstrate our missile that rings doorbells in Pyongyong and asks, "Excuse me, where Grorious Reader?"

  19. ...Chuckie takes every side of every issue and declares himself a prophet.

    How did I miss that?

    Sounds like it belongs in a Kris Kristopherson song.

    Somewhere in those lyrics above...He's a pilgrim, he's a prophet, he's a problem when he's stoned...a walkin' contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction ...

  20. Come in, mystery challenger, and sign in please...

  21. Those Sunday evenings in the fifties, the family gathered in the living room watching John Charles Daly's "What's My Line?"

    On the big old blonde black-and-white Muntz...

    Dorothy Kilgallen, Bennett Cerf, Steve Allen, Arlene Francis, and Fred...

    Homegrown popcorn and apples from the trees out back...

  22. "What's My Line" was my mom's favorite.

    That, and Groucho Marx.

    "Life of Riley" was my dad's deal, that and the Papst Blue Ribbon fights.

    "What a revoltin' development."

    The guy from next door would always come over, and watch the fights. I was about 10 or 12 at the time.

    Mom liked "I Love Lucy" too.

  23. heh, I remember going to Las Vegas with dad and Roscoe, his Jewish partner at the time, going to a business meeting in LA, before the strip was even started. Just what's the old downtown now.

    Golden Nugget.

    Where the action was at.

    Lots of fast cars, and well dressed people.

    Anybody remember Wally Cox?

  24. Orson Bean is fun to listen to on the Miller Show with his Son-in-law Breitbart.
    He knew just about everybody back in the day, and screwed 3/4 of the women.

  25. I knew Wally Cox. He was a friend of mine. You're no Wally Cox!

  26. Somebody asked him about Henry Morgan, he said he was constantly angry.
    Very funny until you became tired of him and left.

  27. It was that marriage to Milagros Tirado (7 September 1963 - May 1966) (divorced) 2 children --that really did him in.

    It was all downhill from there.

  28. "Brando is also reported to have kept Cox's ashes in his bedroom and conversed with them nightly."
    OK, if you knew me so well, tell us something Brando said to me in my urn.

  29. Did Henry have anything to do with that Rum?

  30. heh, even I didn't know that. That's kinda gruesome, if true.

    How about, Now I lay my ashes down to sleep, I pray the Lord my ashes to keep...

  31. The Crowns we have all been aware of, their contribution to Mr Obama's life has been huge, financially.

    That the Sauds got him into Harvard, that's a new twist.

    It would lead one to believe that Mr Crown was not duped, as the author of the following story believes, but an active conspirator in the game.

    Has Philanthropist Lester Crown Been Duped By Islamists?

    While here is an interactive map of some of Lester's public relationships.

    Lester Crown, working in concert with the Sauds to promote Obama into the White House.
    Gotta love it, from a "Friend of Israel". So much of a friend he and his fellows claim credit for much of what Jerusalem is today.

    It is illuminating, as rufus said.

  32. Forgot about old Lester the Molester.

  33. Youthful Ideals Shaped Obama Goal of Nuclear Disarmament

    President Obama is pushing for new global rules, treaties and alliances to establish a nuclear-free world, a vision he developed as a college student.
    He's got such great ideas now, I can't wait to see how brilliant they were in college.

  34. Rat, why is it that Lester Crown has had zero influence on three generations of my family's life here in Idaho? Going on four generations now.
    Even almost five.

    Go get a job with Lester.

  35. This “affluenza” that seems to be infecting the country will be tested in 2008, according to Crown.
    ....“This year is going to be a very tough year for the United States. But we’ve had too many good years, so we’ll have to suck it up. The country has the strength to come back economically, but we need a good leader.

    Which brings us to the question of the Middle East. A longtime supporter of Israel, Henry Crown Hall is home to the Jewish Symphony Orchestra in Jerusalem.
    “Every Israeli prime minister, every Israeli president knows the Crown family,” said Steven Nasatir, president of the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, according to Crain’s Chicago Business. Crown says he’s spent a tremendous amount of time in the Gulf countries, including Egypt, Oman and Saudi Arabia.
    “I have deep concerns about Iran,” Crown says. “I think the media didn’t focus on the right information coming from National Intelligence Estimate (NIE). Enrichment is the primary concern because with enrichment, Iran can then weaponize. Iran has not stopped their enrichment programs or their weapons programs. I don’t think Iran will bomb Israel
    , but I do think they will continue to ship missiles to Hezbollah, who may use them against Israel.” Here in Chicago, Crown serves on many committees, including the Chicago Council of Global Affairs, where he serves as chairman. Founded in 1922, the organization is a leading independent, nonpartisan organization committed to influencing the discourse on global issues through contributions to opinion and policy formation, leadership dialogue and public learning.
    “The council gets all of us to hear things about what is going on in the rest of the world by people who are making the policies,” says Crown. “When President Bush wanted to come to Chicago to speak on foreign affairs, he called the Chicago Council of Global Affairs.

    Chi-town Life

  36. Peyton C. wrote at 1:23 PM on Jul-02-2009:
    The economy's rough. Last year we went to Acapulco, this year we're sticking a plastic pool in the backyard and handing the kids each a can of Pacific Rush Barbisol.

  37. Don't buy GE, Rat.

    Fight back, on this Fourth of July.

  38. Because you do not live in Chicago, boobie. Or utilize equipment from General Dynamics or Maytag, or read the Chicago Tribune.

    Obviously you are not an alumni of Northwestern University nor recieved scholarship money from the Jewish Theological Society, nor have you had any projects involving Tel Aviv University nor have you contributed to the Advance Gifts Campaign at the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.

    If none of those institutions impact Idaho, well, there you have it. You're in a place Mr Crown considers of little consequence.

    Unlike those living in or near Jerusalem.

    I guessing, what the real limits of your exiistance are, I'm not privy to, but it seems that Mr Crown does not deal in either wheat, alfalfa nor McMansion lots.

    He is on the Forbes 400 list, on as semi-permanent basis as possible.

  39. He probably meets up with about 115 other important people at some unpublicized location once a year and plays pinnochle, as well.

    Or maybe he's one of the more important ones that don't "show up" at the meeting for the holli-polloi

  40. Buy GE?

    They sell nuclear reactors, Iran had signed up for 23 of them when the Shah was large and in charge. The Iranians and US forseeing the day in 2009 when they would need massive electrical gernerating capacity.
    Why would I be buying one of those?
    Or jet aircraft engines.

    I do not buy time on local television, but if I did it would not be on the local NBC affiliate.

    What in Zorro Mastery's name are you possiblly speaking of boobie?

  41. And what's he got to do with you, Rat? And your own personal life?

    Surely you are able to live your own life as you see fit, and not let Lester take over.

    It's called walking your own path.

    Bill Gates, I'm sure, is on that mighty Forbes list as well. I do have a Microsoft gizmo here, and glad to have it, but Bill Gates has zero influence on my life.

    If my wife wishes to go to the fireworks display tonight, that means something, and she will tell me so.

  42. Mr Crown is doubly important, boobie, because he is the man that made Barack a millionaire. The man that made him independently wealthy, right before Obama became a US Senator.

    Thomas G. Ayers, father of Bill, was president (1964–1980), CEO and chairman (1973–1980) of Commonwealth Edison. Lester Crown served together on the Board of Trustees of Northwestern University with Mr Crown as a Board member and Ayers as chairman.

    If Bill Ayers wrote the book that Mr Crown used to fund Obama's lifestyle with, well, there is a deep connection between 'em all.


  43. We have a high tech civilization, and some of it is quite good.

    Though one can do without much of it, on a personal basis, day by day, if one needs to. We did back in the fifties for instance. And before that. Got along on one car, and could do so again. We didn't really need the TV, the local performing theator would do as well, and, get us more individually involved. Maybe we could act a part in a play.

    Though our society as a whole needs the energy big firms can provide, given the chance, we all individually could get by on a lot less.

    If GE provides some benefits to us all, by all means buy some stock in it.

    My own personal belief is you need electro shock therapy.

    Provided by GE, or course.

    We're heading out to the fireworks, and a dinner before hand.

    Lester hasn't told us we must go.

  44. How did you miss that, linear? Beats me.

    Must've been off doing something important.

    It was Originally Sinless, AFAIK of the DIAC.

  45. They are the cabal from Chicago that have gained the White House, after a forty year program.

    Just more fodder for general political entertainment, on this glorious Fourth of July, boobie.

  46. Cap n' Trade, Bob.

    If the "Conspiracists" are right, then it's a "One World Government," plot.

    The "Illuminati" in control.

    I'm no longer sure they're wrong.

  47. And Lester really doesn't even run GE. It's run by lawyers, of course, and the laws. When Lester dies, there will be a big fight.

    I recall when the Yellow Banana flew out of Lewiston, to Vegas. Long gone now. Howard Hughes is as dead as the ancient Romans.

    Folks like you would say "Howard Hughes Run The World"

    But Howard is dead to this world, the company no longer in existence, the flights unavailble, real estate in Vegas collapsing, and the farmers still hanging on.

  48. If Lester is working in concert with the Sauds, to promote 'selected' Americans into positions of power and influence, why, let's just go watch the firecrackers ...
    and fergit 'bout it

  49. I don’t think Iran will bomb Israel, but I do think they will continue to ship missiles to Hezbollah, who may use them against Israel.”

    Minor editing gratis. Knowing it was just an oversight...

  50. Lester has nothing to do, with GE, boobie.

    Look at the map, boobie

    General Dynamics is not the same company as General Electric, boobie.

    Quite the intellectual, aren't you?
    PBS will have 'special' soon, then you'll begin to understand.

  51. Hell, Rat, It was just "Their" Turn.

    GW Bush - Skull and Bones

    Bill Clinton - CFR, and Trilateral (I think)

    GHW Bush - Skull and Bones, Trilateral, CFR

    RR - ?

    Jimmy Carter - Trilateral, CFR

    Gerald Ford - Freemason, and Trilateral (I think)

    On and on

  52. No Rufus, there's no conspiracy, just politics as usual, and people trading things around, and people being so damn dumb they let stuff like Cap and Trade come near to passing.

    I quess you can call Cap and Trade a conspiracy it you want, it's really just politics as usual.

    It might not make it through the Senate though.

    Well goodnight.

    Best of the Fourth to you.

  53. No, left that for you ti cut and paste, lineman.

    Those rockets are not nuclear and so do not create an existental threat to any country or government, but that of the Lebonese. Which is of little real import, as well. The French, Italians, Turks and Spanairds are well entrenched there.
    The elections were a success, just another part of the mosaic, those bottle rockets.

    They are certainly not an existental threat to the State of Israel, or they'd have driven on to the Litani.

  54. Skull and Bones being funded by the Russell Company Trust, whose CEO was FDR's grandfater. Which would make him related to, and contemperary with, Teddy Roosevelt.
    Who sent the Great White Fleet to Asia.

    Business as usual.

  55. Yes, we have a high tech civilization.

    Yes, most of it is petroleum based.

    Yes, the Mid East, and Saudi Arabia in particular, supplies much of our needs.

    So yes, we have made agreements with them.

    Until this situation changes in some major way, we have to put with it, and there will be major players in the game.

    There is nothing conspiratorial about any of this, it's just tooth and claw, like normal.

    All these cars, trucks and industrialism only came in the last 150 years or so.

    Much of it has been good.

    To see a conspiracy under every bed is to lose one's sense of reality.

    And, yes, Israel, mistreated badly in Europe, having gone home, is up against it now.

    There is nothing conspiratorial about this either. Two groups of peoples are having an argument.

    I like the side that treats the women right.

    Rat seems to like the other side best.

  56. What would you do if you were the "Illuminati" in 1723, and saw the mess the "Royal" families were making of things?

    What if you figured the "Age of Kings" was coming to an end?

    Would you move on to the next thing?

    Would you take your "Lodge" to the next level. Give them a "Constitution?" One that looks just like the "American Constitution?" (but, 60 years, earlir.)

    Start signing up successful "kinfolks?" And, then a few of the community's successful, but less genealogically "gifted?"

    Like the "Freemasons?"

    Start "expanding" the movement, outward?

  57. The most important issue, to whirled security is nuclear proliferation.
    Ronald Reagan made that point, time and again.

    He was right.

    It is the only issue of true importance.
    Ir should be addressed, beginning with disarming those that are weapons capable, today, that are operating outside the bounds of the NPT. Those nations are rouges by their very natures, one and all, to varied degrees of course.

    But uncivilized rouges, none the less. As South Africa and Libya were and North Korea, Pakistan, India, Iran and Israel remain.

  58. Was it the advent of the Nuclear Age that convinced the "Illuminated" Ones that it was time to "Move On?" Call an End to the "Age of Nations?"

  59. dr: Ir should be addressed, beginning with disarming those that are weapons capable, today, that are operating outside the bounds of the NPT. Those nations are rouges by their very natures, one and all, to varied degrees of course.


    Iran & North Korea by it's threats of destruction of others are the threat...

    Want to include Pakistan against India? Fine...

    But your so called argument that Israel SINCE it never was any part of the NPT is a Rouge state since it wishes NOT to be destroyed by the 330 million arabs, 50 million persians and 800 million moslems doesnt make it rouge...

    It makes it sensible...

    If Israel was the rouge you love to call it, she could have nuked the arab world decades ago...

    your purpose is to be anti-israeli (as usual)

    might i suggest you stick to issue you know?

    like rattlesnake and moonshine?

  60. It soems so when reading the Rockefeller story, rufus.

    The funded the acquisition of the Oyster Bay property for the UN and were the impetuous to the signing of the UN Charter, in San Fransisco, at the Fairmont Hotel there on Nob Hill.

    Coincided with the beginnings of their IBEC adventures. They were weavers of a tangled web, indeed.

  61. Here's what I can't understand about a dumb bastard like Rat. On the one hand, he talks about going into Syria, and tells us exactly how we should do it, he being the expert, and having it out; then, on the other hand, he supports a Ron Paul, who has said Iran has every right to nuclear weapons, and wants to pull all our forces out of everywhere.

    This simply makes no sense.

    The guys brain is really fried.

    There is a movement in the world, and has been for some time, to try to come to some realization of the idea that started with Grotius, in the Rights of War and Peace, circa 1625, and try to make a real peace based on mutual advantage, and hopefully this understanding will have become for all mankind the guaratee of a final rule of peace.

    Or, we may blow ourselves up in the meantime.

    I'm becoming pessimistic.

  62. Aug 2, 1776, Fifty six men signed the Declaration of Independence.

    One, we are sure Was NOT a Freemason.

    50, we are sure, WERE Freemasons.

    5, we don't know.

  63. No, my pirpose is to illuminate the reality of Israeli threats of retaliation. A MAD response.

    Back in the day, this made sense.
    Cairo or Damascus could be threatened, in a conventional war.

    But now, neither Cairo nor Damascus constitute much of a conventional military threat to Israel. The country that the Israeli claim is a current threat, Iran, they also claim cannot be deterred by MAD doctrine.

    So, of what value are those weapons, if it is agreed they are not a MAD deterrent?

    There can only then be an attempted justification of Israel having a pre-emptive nuclear edge.

    Which is not in any way in the best national interests of the United States.

  64. Long live the Freemasons!

    They came up with a pretty good document, all in all, that is breaking down now.

    What should be substituted for it?

    The Lutheran Cathecism?

    The Koran?

    The Old Testiment?

    The Laws of the City States of Mesopotamia?


    I think they did pretty good, though in a nation of 300 millions of morons, it looks to be a loser.

  65. "Here's what I can't understand about a dumb bastard like Rat."

    Uh, that he is capable of winding you up endlessly? C'mon, bob. It's the fuckin' Fourth and you want to tango with an ignorant dick? Not what the Founding Fathers had in mind for posterity, guy.

  66. Makes total sense, boobie.

    I propose what I think is in the best interest of the US. Taking out the Syrian armor in '03 and '04, as an example.

    Back when the electorate of the country would permit such behaviour. While it would not have affected the free flow of oil to whirled markets.

    The Primary Interest of the US.

    We'd have broken the back of the Baathist regime in Syria, but not removed it, while limiting its' ability to protect HB in Lebanon.

    We could have won.

    That was not the course chosen.
    It is certainly not a viable option, today.

    So to promote such a strategy, today is out of place and just plain dumb. The electorate is opposed to any new military adventure, the other two not being completed.

    Mr Bush not being able to convince US, the Congress, the Courts or the electorate that those local conflicts are part of a whirled war.

    Iran is not Syria, no more so than General Dynamics is General Electric.

    To confuse the two, not a sign of being intellectually adept.

    For years past and continuing, I have supported developing an infrastruture of insurgency in Iran. Arabs, Kurds, Pashtuns and especially the Baluchis.

    So that when the limited sanctions regime caused riots and revolution, there'd have been a chance the revolutionaries could have succeeded.

    But Mr Bush decided and chose another course, the one we are on today.

    The Iranians have as much right to nuclear electrical generation as the Japanese or the French. That is part of the NPT.
    That they have operatee outside the norms of the NPT should have brought harsh sanctions. But the US could not get it done, under Mr Bush's management.

    Obama, according to that one report, does not want to 'stress' the Iranians more than they already are. Is he saving the lives and loves of countless Nedas, by letting the EU take the lead?

    I do not know, fer sur.

    But I do know that the Primary National Interest of the US, as concerns Iran, is the free flow of oil.

    So any proposal that concerns Iran must have a high probability of maintaining that free flow of oil at market prices.

  67. "Uh, that he is capable of winding you up endlessly? C'mon, bob."
    Not only the founding fathers, but that was the attitude of his ancestors that brought them to America, tilled the Prarie, and fought off the Injuns.

    (actually, the Injuns just got bored to death listening, and went back for a turn on the Peace Pipe)

  68. The den mother says no cookies or merit badges for you, today, boobie.

    What is further funny, boobie, is that no one said that the Freemason influence was "bad", only that is was.

    You are the one that decided it was a "bad" thing.

    But to deny that President Washington was a grand poobah of Masonry and that the first inaugural was not an outright Freemason ceremony, why that's just out of step with history.

    Those Freemason Masters may well embrace the founding myths of Zorro Mastery, for all I know.

  69. I never trusted him because of the brand of powder he used on his wig.

  70. So, we've all observed that animals don't seem all that sharp, or at least man-like in their approach to, and appreciation of, mirrors, right?

    So it is understandable that a bird might not totally get it when approaching the mirror, but wouldn't you think he'd want to avoid the oncoming bird?

    - Seinfeld

  71. Largest distiller of whisky, in the Americas, was George Washington.

    No way he was letting the competition get by not paying the whisky tax.

    Enforced regulation always helps the market leader. Which is why Walmart bought into Obamacare.

  72. KABUL (AP) - Taliban militants attacked a U.S. coalition base in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday with an explosives-laden truck that blew up outside the gates, sparking a two-hour gunbattle and killing two American troops, officials said.

    U.S. forces called in airstrikes to end the clash, killing more than 30 insurgents in Zerok district of Paktika province, said Hamidullah Zawak, the provincial governor spokesman. Seven U.S. and two Afghan troops were wounded, a U.S. military spokesman said.

    The multi-pronged attack near the Pakistan border is hundreds of miles (kilometers) from the massive Marine assault in southern Afghanistan ...

  73. By Roger Runningen

    July 4 (Bloomberg) -- Vice President Joseph Biden told Iraqi leaders that the path to a secure peace lies in uniting ethnic and sectarian groups and said the U.S. might disengage from their country if it reverts to sustained violence.

    Biden said he and President Barack Obama “appreciate that Iraq has traveled a great distance over the past year, but there is a hard road ahead if Iraq is going to find lasting peace and stability,” according to a press pool report of the vice president’s visit to Iraq

  74. CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) - President Hugo Chavez's government assumed control of Venezuela's third-largest bank on Friday - making the state the largest player in the nation's banking system.

    The purchase of the Spanish-owned Banco de Venezuela gives Chavez's socialist government control over more than one-fifth of bank deposits as he tightens his grip over the economy.

    The acquisition will "strengthen the public banking system," which favors sectors including agriculture, energy, housing and tourism, Finance Minister Ali Rodriguez said in a statement.

    In May, the Venezuelan government agreed to pay Spain's Grupo Santander $1.05 billion for the bank, ending months of stalled negotiations.

    At the time, Banco de Venezuela had 3.2 million clients, 10 percent of the country's deposits and 6,000 employees.

    Combined with other state banks, the government will now control about 21 percent of deposits and 16 percent of loans, a payroll of 15,000 employees and 651 bank branches.

    The deal went into effect on Friday with an initial payment of $630 million. The rest will be paid in two equal installments in October and December

  75. Plus, Walmart will be able to move all of its employees into the Obamacare plan...As will the majority of American corporations.

  76. That is just one of the benefits they'll see. It'll take a lot of steam out of the Unionization efforts.

    As the sun is going down, I went out to take down the flag.
    Only one on the block, today.

    How many of your neighbors flew their flags?

    How many even have one?

  77. (actually, the Injuns just got bored to death listening, and went back for a turn on the Peace Pipe)

    Sat Jul 04, 10:00:00 PM EDT

    They didn't patiently endure for their Lester Crown merit badges?

    I'm checking the Federal Socialist bylaws and I do believe that on this occasion someone is supposed to recite the potor mool, er, motor pool speech from Stripes. (It's our little joke.)

  78. And the Rockridge Church speech from Blazing Saddles.

  79. And something, can't rememer what, from Henry V.


  81. Puppetmasterery,
    via Robert A. Heinlein.

    Whose "Starship Trooper" was a great book and one lousy movie series.

  82. You may be better off, than your friend, if you can manage the guilt of surviving.

    Private Ryan.

  83. desert rat said...
    No, my pirpose is to illuminate the reality of Israeli threats of retaliation. A MAD response.

    No Israeli NUKEs are not about MAD (mutual assured destruction) never had been.. Israeli nukes are about EVENING the fighting field...

    Currently the arab world has 649/650th of the middle east with a population of 330 million people verses 1/650th of the land area and 6 million people..

    Now add in Iran & the rest of the Islamic countries and you will see that Israel has WMD to COUNTER the hundreds of millions of islamic persons willing to die to kill a Jew....

    DR: Back in the day, this made sense.

    MAD was only a policy of america and the soviet union... never extended to france, china or japan.

    DR: Cairo or Damascus could be threatened, in a conventional war.

    But now, neither Cairo nor Damascus constitute much of a conventional military threat to Israel.

    Nonsense... Egypt is the world's largest arab nation and has and can threaten Israel, in fact it is purchasing advanced Russian SA400's as we speak, and as for Syria? they were building a Plutonium plant next year... Glad to hear you think egypt and syria are paper tigers but that really doesnt hold much water in circles that actually know the battlefields...

    DR: The country that the Israeli claim is a current threat, Iran, they also claim cannot be deterred by MAD doctrine.
    So, of what value are those weapons, if it is agreed they are not a MAD deterrent?
    There can only then be an attempted justification of Israel having a pre-emptive nuclear edge.

    Israel is in a state of war with 17 arab and one persian nation, now maybe arabia understands the MAD concept and now some arab countries are actually getting the message that if the do harm to israel they will get pounded, Israel has to have the pre-emptive ability to PREVENT another 6 million jews from being turned into glass...

    DR: Which is not in any way in the best national interests of the United States.

    Last time I checked Israel is it's own nation, with it's own national interests...

    AND as we have seen, AMerica under president big ears, has changed america's interests...

    he loves castro, chavez, wright, ayers, hamas, putin, assad & lenin....

    America has told Israel to go to hell..

  84. Here is the simple answer, same today as on October 27, 1964.

    But there you go.

  85. And BOTH the Bluto and Otter speeches from Animal House.

    Prefaced by spitty Pledge Pin reference.

  86. And hum the mall-drive tune from Blues Brothers.

  87. MOSCOW — The Russian government has agreed to let American troops and weapons bound for Afghanistan fly over Russian territory, officials on both sides said Friday. The arrangement will provide an important new corridor for the United States military as it escalates efforts to win the eight-year war.

  88. Two favorite parades:

    Animal House & Ferris Bueller

  89. Ferris Bueller

    Sun Jul 05, 12:32:00 AM EDT

    Amen. That was awesome.

  90. Non-toxic cookie if you put up youtube link to Bueller parade.

  91. That's interesting, Teresita. Is this payment for nixing missile defense, or are they just being nice guys?

  92. Or maybe they think it's a good thing for us to be tied down in Afghanistan.

  93. Just engaged java script and scrolled down this thread to see faces with comments...that Zorro- Master getup next to rat's posts has me rollin' on the floor.

    Hat-- $9.95
    Mask-- $3.29
    Moustache-- $0.39

    Effect-- Priceless

    To be a fly on the wall at the rat dining table. What incredible tales of intrigue and conspiracy as spun by the prophet must there be revealed. Nightly. Do they know how lucky they are?

  94. I don't know for sure what it's called, al-Doug. I bet my aunt would have known though.

  95. I'm hesitant to say it, because it's probably wrong, but maybe some kind of mountain lily? There was snow on the ground nearby.

  96. Do you know, Linear, what that flower might be?

  97. I quess I'll call it Spring Yellow Flower of the Mountain Snowfield. There was snow just a few feet away.

    That seems to do justice to it, and has a nice ring.

  98. Looks kind of like a Lily.

    Lily was like Sonia, only younger and fresher.

  99. Looks kinda like some tropical flowers.
    Tropical Snow Orchid?

  100. The leaves remind me of the wild Iris on my place. The bloom is new to me.

    This seems a bad year for wild flowers here. I don't know if they have cycles. Most years you can drive along and the roadsides are covered, a new blossom comes and goes in a two to three week rotation. The Carpenteria californica was scarcely seen this spring. Its native range is only here, about my elevation, between the San Joaquin and Kings River. This wiki photo doesn't do it justice. There's a spot about a thousand feet below me where the bushes are 6-8 ft tall, and blossoms so dense in a good year they dominate the waxy dark green foliage. We've had a terrible water year, overall. If I can find my photos, I'll send you a picture or two I took in '06. I kept waiting this year, and they scarcely showed, unless they'd been out during April and gone by early May when I got home.

  101. Iris, that's what I was trying to think of.

    That Carpenteria reminds me of a plant with yellow flowers that I brought back from some beach area (memory going fast now) and planted it and it grew like crazy.
    We had the perfect name for it, which I have also forgotten.
    Hope the Bar has a mug to honor the first Alzheimer Victim.
    I'm definitely in the running.
    Maybe the wife will remember the name...

  102. Who could forget Iris, tho?
    She was like Lily only...

  103. My Dell ought to arrive Mon or Tue. It's resting in Sacto over the holiday weekend after a long flight from somewhere to Reno on Thursday. FedEx really keeps you informed of travel status. Better than AA, unfortunately.

    Heard over the PA system at Dallas-Ft Worth, Christmas Eve, 1999, as 200 others and I waited to board an overbooked and AWOL airplane: "Attention American Airlines passengers ticketed to Tulsa...your bus is now loading curbside opposite Gate 53". Bus? WTF?

    I finished the trip on a fucking bus. Last time I flew anywhere.

  104. My Dell ought to arrive Mon or Tue. It's resting in Sacto over the holiday weekend after a long flight from somewhere to Reno on Thursday. FedEx really keeps you informed of travel status. Better than AA, unfortunately.

    Heard over the PA system at Dallas-Ft Worth, Christmas Eve, 1999, as 200 others and I waited to board an overbooked and AWOL airplane: "Attention American Airlines passengers ticketed to Tulsa...your bus is now loading curbside opposite Gate 53". Bus? WTF?

    I finished the trip on a fucking bus. Last time I flew anywhere.