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Everything posted by STP

  1. Time to ban knives

    Check out some of the comments following the article, for example, making the distinction between love for one's country versus feelings for a particular administration. Also see this: Drinking the Kool-Aid--Middle East Policy Council
  2. Time to ban knives

    Sometimes painting the face is just a way of showing identification with something as when fans paint their faces to cheer their football team. Sometimes it’s more sinister as when people paint their faces to resemble jaguars (Central/South American death squads). It seems ritualistic or preparatory, to signal some change needed for a brief excursion from the norm or for the assumption of an identity required for a special task. It’s more than just painting the face though. It can take other forms such as simply wearing a mask (avatar) or wearing a uniform to depersonalize the individual. Many of us as youngsters participated in a yearly ritual of trick or treat but few of us experience the breach with society that killing entails. What about when the state requires you to kill for the greater purpose of national security? The Psychology Behind Killing
  3. California or Mexico?

    Here's my 60-second philosophy tying climbing and thinking: I appreciate the distillation of an issue to two prime factors because that allows a good starting point to begin to understand at a basic level and then to work up and out from there. Personally I see it more as a rhetorical device rather than the actual acknowledgement of a dialectic process only involving the interaction of two entities. Likewise, with consistency in argumentation--easy for me to follow but only if I choose to stay on the path--that's my problem. There is some validity to a gut check, not always correct but valid nevertheless. It's that small voice you sometimes hear when climbing either at the crag or on alpine. No, not the psychotic "redrum redrum" but the internal agent, not quite the conscience, but some internal script that strives to keep things in check. Sometimes it's fear and, as such, prevents my reaching to that unseen hold. But other times, it seems as if something has already reached out and discovered that you should rethink your position. So, do trad climbers and boulderers tend to be smarter than gym climbers?
  4. Is Obama Really Gonna Take Advice From...

    That's the same fellow who's introducing a law to register and regulate essentially all gun owners. So, despite Heller vs District of Columbia, we have a Congress and a President who has a record of intruding on 2nd Amendment rights. Take that with the attorney general, Eric Holder, and you have support for what MattP asserted a way back.
  5. Hunter Orange for Hikers?

    I did a little bit of hunting in my youth but I believe it's contingent on the hunter to be responsible to positively identify the target before pulling the trigger. Many situations don't involve a split second decision unless you're doing certain types of bird hunting, for example. BTW, I generally concur with the provision to have an adult accompany a minor. The adult should be ultimately responsible for the minor's actions in this particular situation although there are some very responsible (gun-wielding) minors.
  6. Obama actually did it

    Can't say I've quite understood the 3rd Amendment to the Bill of Rights in the overall context of the contemporary world: No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. Seems a bit outdated if you take it literally. But the intent, if I understand correctly, is that the military is subordinate to the civilian authority. I don't take this to just mean that the President is the Commander-in-Chief but I'll take the liberty to loosely extrapolate that military means and ends do NOT have primacy. Bush's 'war on terror' comes to a sudden end --msnbc
  7. California or Mexico?

    Talking 'bout drugs, I'm gonna segue this with the Gaza/India threads. Just ignore it. [video:youtube]0GigQ8qAewM
  8. Amazing beyond words

    Perhaps others may have taken "We will not apologize for our way of life..." to to mean: "We will continue to borrow like the world will end tomorrow and spend money like drunken sailors while we use the worlds resources 3 times as much as anyone else as we damn well please so sod off and just move out of Iraq so we can get our pumps in there and move along to Afghanistan we're not apologizing for any of this at all." ? Hmmmm.... C'mon now Bill. You've done plenty of good while consuming all of those resources. Provided a good home with heat, light, food, etc for your family, provided an income for other folks, enabled other people to do the same, contributed a fortune in taxes to help fund medicare, medicaid, social security, public education, foreign-AID, scientific research, etc - all without borrowing like a drunken sailor. Take off the hair-shirt! It suits Prole much better than you, my friend! I’d suppose that the young activists, visionaries and radicals of the 60’s and early 70’s saw two different images of America. One was held by Nixon’s silent majority who often said, “America, Love it or Leave it" and who remember well John Wayne’s words, “Never say sorry—it’s a sign of weakness.” The other image of America was one of a world in flux progressing towards an expansion of values to be more inclusive, representing a higher unity. The world is the tribe. Perhaps that's too lofty an ideal but it feels like that spirit again. The cynic in me sees Obama as an embodiment of virtue as described in Machiavelli’s The Prince. The sacred oath loses something if one mouths the word "God" but does not acknowledge the actual existence of such in some form. Nevertheless, while the President speaks of challenges and hardship his head steadily looks up so that our gaze is directed upwards with his. Maybe a little cryptic but here’s one for the oldsters: [video:youtube]xWGAdzn5_KU
  9. Obama Giddyness Syndrom

    I was aware of his troubles but sometimes you gotta treat information as just information regardless of source. See the following: Roubini Predicts U.S. Losses May Reach $3.6 Trillion --Bloomberg So in this upsidedown world, we lower taxes and raise gov't spending.
  10. Obama Giddyness Syndrom

    Until March 19 or April 23 of this year (if you want to believe the hokey). http://www.contrahour.com/contrahour/2006/06/martin_armstron.html Start of crash until June 13, 2011, the beginning of the turnaround.
  11. California or Mexico?

    The Terminator said 'Fiscal Armageddon'. Don't plan on retiring with a pension plan. CalPERS may need bailout Downgraded credit ratings S&P Downgrades California Bond Issue Raise taxes, cut spending OR declare insolvent. Maybe the state and/or feds should sell off assets such as parks to private interests...hmmm?
  12. California or Mexico?

    I'm curious (as I don't know the answer plus I always like to throw a little bit of the kitchen sink into things) but how big a role did state investment in levered instruments play? For instance, if you take Orange County, CA as sort of a microcosm and look at how it played out there in 1994, you can see how investment (I think in this case in CDOs) figured. Now I'm probably talking out my ass here but I'm trying to understand what's going on. Also, there was a budget crisis in 1992 while Republican Gov. Pete Wilson was in charge although he inherited that financial mess. I wonder if the 1992 crisis led to rethinking and change in behavior or did the "irrational exuberance' going into the latter half of the 90's and into the next decade also infect their minds?

    Hmmm....an alternative to our present system which appears to be either falling apart around us or poised to reconstitute into a different form? The answer to the question they posed: The Venus Project Venus (the morning star)...nice name...seems justly appropriate for a system based on the correct application of technology to deliver us from the human condition. As always, sounds more like a religion...another flawed system in a series of flawed systems.
  14. California or Mexico?

    Can't comment directly to the originating post other than the following: US Constitution, Article 1, Section 10, Clause 1 1. No state shall enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation; grant letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; emit bills of credit ; make any thing but gold and silver coin a tender in payment of debts; pass any bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, or grant any title of nobility. [ I'm not versed in constitutional law so maybe this has no bearing on IOUs issued by the state. ] The US Constitution prohibits the states from issuing their own currency, however, will local currencies become a part of our future? New age town embraces dollar alternative --Reuters Also: THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES AND HONEST MONEY, PART 5
  15. HIV Does *Not* Cause Aids

    RE: the antivaccine angle Book Is Rallying Resistance to the Antivaccine Crusade Guys preaching to the choir. The article, as originally written, gave advice to ignore those antivaccine folks. I disagree. It's a larger phenomenon with many fronts.
  16. Forget student loans- just auction your virginity

    Looks like she's into water sports.
  17. we need more religion threads

    Oh you want yo mama. Here she is. [video:youtube]_0BDQ2s28iE
  18. we need more religion threads

    I don't want any of that old time religion. [video:youtube]dyMVZqJk8s4

    all episodes of The Prisoner here
  20. WTF! Can my company do this?

    Request hmmm. Doesn't say 'comply' or 'order'. Feign ignorance based on vague language. Disclaimer: This advice not to be contrued for legal purposes. Do not forgo seeking the advice of a professional.
  21. Wall Street Bailout

    In certain circles, are you known as the Devourer? Or just the Masticator?
  22. Human impact on evolution

    Interesting article. Lemme try to look at it from a different angle, not necessarily from an evolutionary but rather an ecological outlook first. The standard line from pro-hunting groups (and even state conservation agencies) is that harvesting decreases population pressure so that starvation does not occur in the absence of 'natural' predators. Also, production of larger fruit (berries, etc.) occurs as biological response to selective pressures such as harvesting. For plants, also see the effect described in the -3/2 power thinning law. As far as evolution, I haven't read the entire article so it's just as easy that I misinterpret it. So, we're not talking about Larmarckian evolution, but essentially it's artificial selection that has an effect on phenotypic variability. The phenotypic expression of the genotype shouldn't be eliminated in the species although you might see something similar to the different dog breeds (yet it's still one species). There may be other environmental effects that produce early maturity although I'd have to agree that selection at the population level is likely due to effects on reproductive success but this would have to occur across the board. The problem I had (probably just me) is how do you study the isolated effects of something on something? For example, do we make allowances for type of reproductive strategy such as K and r-selection? Aren't we sometimes producing theories (models) or more importantly, policy based on faulty parts (peer accepted ideas from research studies)? At this juncture, it becomes more a matter of politics (the art and science of guiding or controlling people).
  23. 814 days

    Is a 'Katrina-Like' Space Storm Brewing? The new NASA solar goalpost: Cycle 24, maybe not so big Well, so much for doomsday.
  24. The Steady Decline of Spray

    I don't see whtat the big deal is. Marmots are herbivores.