An Ol' Broad's Ramblings
Archive for 25 May 2008
PASADENA, Calif. — NASA’s Phoenix spacecraft has landed near Mars’ north pole for a 90-day digging mission.
Mission control at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory celebrated after the Phoenix Mars Lander signaled back that it had survived Sunday’s fiery entry.
Phoenix will be the first spacecraft to study the Martian arctic plains. Unlike NASA’s mobile twin rovers, the lander will stay in one spot. It will use its robotic arm to dig into the permafrost to determine if the polar environment has the ingredients needed for life to emerge.
And courtesy of Texas Fred in honor of this special occasion:
The allegations are contained in a confidential “field report” written by a British officer who served in Basra during one of the most dangerous periods of the conflict. The report, which has never been made public, shows the full level of Iran’s involvement in the insurgency for the first time.
The document states that the Jaish al-Mahdi (JAM) – also known as the Mahdi Army – one of the most violent insurgent groups operating in Basra, used money from Iran to recruit and pay young unemployed men up to $300 (£150) a month to carry out attacks against the British. The findings have been passed to the highest levels in the military.
The leak comes at a time of rising tension between Iran and the international community, as Tehran continues to stonewall UN inquiries into allegations that it has carried out research to develop a nuclear weapon.
In the report, Major Job discloses that in the course of five months his base was attacked 350 times. Old State Building, which is in the centre of Basra, is the most-attacked British base in recent history.
In an attempt to discover who was behind the attacks, the officer says he established a network of informers, who supplied him with detailed intelligence on the actions of the insurgents and who was behind their funding.
The officer states that the reports of Iran’s involvement came from a network of 25 sources, which included a former Iraqi army general, prominent businessmen, local sheikhs and council leaders.
He writes: “We learnt from a number of our Key Leadership Engagements [local contacts] that the source of the problem was the level of unemployment in Basra.
“JAM, using funding from Iran, paid the unemployed youths in the region of $300 per month to attack Multi National Forces. We also learnt that JAM had a drugs culture and that youths literally got hooked on being associated with JAM.”
Have a chat, with no preconditions, MR Hussein? I don’t bloody well think so!
Like Your $5 Gas?
By Kevin McCullough
Spending $60, $70, even $90 for a fill up at the gas station is fun right? When it comes to crippling, racist, and economically debilitating energy policy liberals have truly paralyzed America. And they seem proud of their efforts. In the left’s refusal to allow us to seek new energy sources they are stunting a nation’s economy, they are hurting the average family, and they are starving hungry children.
They also have the gall to do all of this under the guise of feigned outrage at oil companies in addition to self-superior Senate floor speeches where they rage against the administration. They also express abject resentment towards anyone who dares to mention the obvious – that it is their policies that put us in this mess to begin with and disallows our escape from it.
If you want a mere glimpse of their hypocrisy revisit Gore v. Bush. I’m not referring to the court case, but their living arrangements. Bush lives in a solar powered home designed for maximum conservation impact in his Crawford ranch. Al Gore’s home has not been converted to solar power, and only a year ago was exposed for having toxic waste on his property that was actually polluting the local water supplies. But this simple comparison barely scratches the surface as to the left’s energy scam.
The real pinch that you feel at the pump exists for multiple reasons. Nearly all of them the fault of liberals.
St. Edward illustrates the problem the Catholic Church in America faces. While the number of Catholics continues to grow, topping 64 million last year, the number of priests continues to dwindle. Since 1985, the number of diocesan priests has dropped from 35,052 to 27,971, and the number of parishes without a priest in residence has tripled. In 2007, 3,238 parishes — or one in six — were without a priest.
For Breen, one solution to this crisis seems clear. The Catholic Church, he says, needs to allow married men to become priests.
He points out that many married men already are leaders in the church as permanent deacons.
“I would hope the bishops would find the courage, the nerve, the leadership skills, to tell the pope, for the good of our church, we have to ordain these married men to become full-time pastors,” Breen said. “They would be a tremendous asset to the church.”
This has never made a lot of sense to me. There was a time when priest were allowed to marry, then someone noticed there was a lot of corruption going on, and put a stop to it. Now, some of the first apostles were married, but left to follow Jesus. The Bible doesn’t really say if their wives went with them, or stayed home. Given the major shortage of priests, I’d say by allowing them to marry, they’d get a whole lot more applicants for the seminary. But then, I’m not Catholic, so I don’t know how all that works.
Barack Obama, the probable Democratic presidential nominee, wants Bill Clinton to help him heal the deep party rifts created by his wife Hillary’s divisive campaign – culminating in her dramatic claim this weekend that the 1968 assassination of Robert F Kennedy was a reason not to be pushed out of the race.
The tension between Hillary Clinton and Obama intensified after she told the Sioux Falls Argus Leader in South Dakota, which holds the last primary contest in 10 days’ time: “We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June.”
She quickly apologised, ashen-faced, for a comment which appeared dangerously close to wishful thinking about Obama, but the damage was done.
Now, I’m not gonna defend the Shrilldebeast, but what she said was a matter of fact, true. RFK, the presumptive nominee, was killed in June, in California. If memory serves, the Dems had to scramble to pick a new candidate. Honestly, I don’t think she was doing a wishful thinking, although….. Naw, she wouldn’t do something like that…..would she? Hmmmm….
Turkey, a vacation destination for many Israelis and the home of newly launched talks with Syria, is experiencing an upsurge in Islamist programs targeting Israel for destruction.
According to Turkish web site Velfecr.com, radical Turkish Islamists have been organizing nightly programs in cities across Turkey under the slogan, “A free Al-Quds [the Muslim term for Jerusalem], A world without Israel.” The halls are decked out with photos of Hizbullah Chief Hassan Nasrallah and former Hamas Chief Ahmed Yassin. PLO flags are draped over the speaker’s podium.
Looks like Turkey isn’t going to be an ally much longer. I can’t figure out why people buy into such a violent religion.
When the next president takes office in January, he or she will likely receive an intelligence brief warning that Islamic terrorists will attempt to exploit the transition in power by planning an attack on America, intelligence experts say.
After all, that is what happened to Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush at a time when their national security teams and their counterterrorism plans were in flux.
Islamic terrorists bombed the World Trade Center in February 1993, in Mr. Clinton’s second month as president. Al Qaeda’s Sept. 11 attacks came in the Bush presidency’s first year. The strikes on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon happened as the White House national security director was formulating a comprehensive plan for combating Osama bin Laden’s terror network, which had declared war on the United States.
Ya know, if we were united in standing strong against terrorists, this shouldn’t be an issue. After all, the POTUS doesn’t control the purse strings. But, since we’ve had a Congressional change of hands in D.C., we are perceived as weak and divided. Way to go Pelosi and Reid. Nice job. (insert sarcasm here)
A three-legged NASA spacecraft was closing in on Mars Sunday for what scientists hope will be the first-ever touchdown near Mars’ north pole to study whether the permafrost could have supported primitive life.
I think we got the left overs, and their descendants are now in D.C.
The founder and chief commander of Colombia’s FARC rebel force, Manuel Marulanda, has died after more than 40 years fighting the state from jungle and mountain camps, the government said on Saturday.
If confirmed, the death of Manuel Marulanda, who organized the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia guerrillas in the 1960s, would be the heaviest blow yet to Latin America’s oldest insurgency, already weakened by a military setbacks.
Shucks, Chavez lost a bud.
More than 70,000 houses toppled during an aftershock that rocked China’s earthquake-ravaged Sichuan province on Sunday, state television reported.
At least one person was killed and 400 were hurt when the 5.8 magnitude tremor hit southwest China, according to the Xinhua state news agency. The aftershock also caused office towers to sway 800 miles away in Beijing.
The latest aftershock is one of the strongest to hit Sichuan since the May 12 earthquake that battered large parts of the province.
Prayers are with the Chinese people.
With American motorists struggling to pay record-high gasoline prices, a debate rages in the halls of Congress and across the Oil Patch over the role speculators may be playing in driving up oil prices.
Crude prices have rocketed nearly $70 a barrel in the past year. Some energy experts suggest speculation could account for $20 to $30 of that run-up.
Desperate to help angry constituents, lawmakers have been scrambling to find solutions. They have voted to close the so-called Enron loophole by regulating electronic trading, and they’ve given the Federal Trade Commission more authority to guard against market manipulation.
I’ve no doubt that speculators are cashing in, BIG time. I also have no doubt that those who are whining in Washington are just as much to blame, if not more so. Their failed policies are hitting us, HARD! Wipe the slate clean in November! Hmmm….is there anyone running with common sense? Might have a problem there. sigh…
El Paso leaders and veterans have begun in earnest what is likely to be a years-long political odyssey to bring a full-fledged veterans hospital to El Paso.
“El Paso is going to be seeing a huge influx of troops who, at some point, will need access to a veterans hospital, and we have to be prepared for that,” El Paso County Commissioner Veronica Escobar said.
Fort Bliss is expected to grow by more than 65,000 soldiers and their families by 2013. Many of those soldiers could stay in the region and increase the demand for local health-care services.
Excuse me, but why wasn’t there a VA hospital there a LONG time ago? It’s a large city, it has many military personnel, and there’s been a base there….well, for forever. So, what’s the problem? You build a VA hospital, and knock off the politics!
From the Marijuana Policy Project (which advocates legalizing pot) to the booth selling off-the-wall, and sometimes off-color, Libertarian T-shirts and hats (best-seller: a white T-shirt that says “Electile Dysfunction” and features symbols for the Republican and Democratic parties), the Libertarian convention at the downtown Sheraton Denver Hotel is a place to see the unusual.
In the convention hall itself, a fight for the soul of the third-largest political party in the nation is going on and will likely settle itself today.
This afternoon the Libertarian Party will select its nominee for president. Among the candidates is former four-term Georgia congressman Bob Barr, who switched from the Republican Party in 2006 and looks to carry the Libertarian Party to a wider audience. Battling him are old-school Libertarians like Mary Ruwart of Texas and Wayne Allyn Root, a Las Vegas odds maker.
It’s been that drug and open border policy I’ve always had a problem with, but with the other party nominees, Barr might get closer than a lot of folks believe. Who knows. I’m fed up with the lot of them!
Yep, like it or not, whether you are young, or old, like me, death is in your future! Sorry, that’s just the way it is. Your body gets broken, sick, or just plain worn out. Happens to everyone. And to those folks who believe the highways belong to them….yes, you ARE going to die too. One way, or another.
So, I found this article kind of interesting. It starts out about some legislation in the Nashville, but ends with some real good advice, even if a commie organization like AARP was involved.
Groups including AARP, the Funeral Consumers Alliance and Consumers Union, the publishers of Consumer Reports, advise against buying prepaid funerals in most cases. Here are tips from these organizations:
Compare prices from several funeral homes. Ask for a price list that lays out costs for products and services. You can save money by selecting only the items you need and avoiding package deals.
Don’t pay in advance. Ask your local bank about setting up a pay-on-death account. When you die, the money will automatically go to a beneficiary for funeral costs.
Communicate your wishes clearly to family members and leave written instructions in an easy-to-find place.
See, told ya it was good advice. Me? My bod is gonna be worm meat, so honestly, I don’t much care where the Mr plants me, as long as it’s in a nice warm, sunny spot, maybe with some shade in the afternoon.
After all the horrors stories we’ve heard on the news in recent years about some funeral homes, it’s probably a good idea to shop around, get some word of mouth info, and base your decision on reality. Don’t wait till you’re gone, and leave your family penniless after paying for your big send off.
19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: