Day: April 22, 2018

The Sherman Tank

Almost Chosen People

 “A Tiger can destroy 10 Sherman tanks, but the Americans have 11.”

Field Marshal Erwin Rommel

A military maxim proclaims that quantity has a quality all its own.  Some 50,000 M4 Sherman tanks were manufactured by the US during the World War II.  A speedy and maneuverable medium tank, the M4 was designed to be shipped easily by sea and rail.  As an infantry support platform it was much loved by GI’s.  The only problem was that the Sherman was totally outgunned by  German Tigers and Panthers.  One dismayed tanker recalled seeing a Tiger fire through two buildings and still take out a Sherman.  The Sherman 75 gun could not penetrate the front armor of a Tiger.  Tiger and Panther shells had little problem penetrating the Sherman’s armor, causing American tankers to sometimes refer to their tanks as Ronsons, after a popular lighter of the period.  However, the…

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Was East Germany Ever Really a Country: Thoughts on the Problem of Sovereignty

Superfluous Answers to Necessary Questions


Today in 1955, East Germany became a sovereign country. Officially sovereign according to the Soviet Union that is. At that time, the German Democratic Republic was still occupied by the Red Army, its capital city of East Berlin remained legally under the control of a council of the four Allied powers, and as a state it was only recognized by the USSR, fellow Eastern Bloc countries, and Yugoslavia. So was it a sovereign country or not?

Whether or not a country exists is a deceptively simple problem. When you look at the map of the world, at first glance it seems to be neatly divided into clear and distinct sovereign units. Yet, there are six United Nations member countries that are not recognized by at least one other UN member nation and at least ten other entities that claim to be sovereign countries that lack widespread recognition. Not to…

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Great critique of unconscious-bias training by Tetlock

Was the Reformation founded on hate speech?

Was at a rainbow forum last year that called for a ban on hate speech. The host venue was a church whose founding article of faith included denouncing the pope as the Antichrist. Could not work out from Google if and when they backed away from that unkind accusation.

Insane Earth Day 1970 Predictions That Didn’t Come True

Green Jihad

Sean Hannity’s Fox News show from Earth Day 2014 in which he discusses six predictions made during the first Earth Day in 1970 that did not come true. Sean then discusses the issue of climate change with guests Dana Perino and DeRoy Murdock.

Reason magazine Editor Ronald Bailey compiled an even larger list of claims made on that day in 1970 that were wrong as well. With tomorrow being Earth Day, what Sean Hannity and Reason raise is as relevant then as it is now.

Environmentalists are not concerned about the natural environment or even seeking to preserve human life. What they ultimately want is political control mankind and our way of life.

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The ‘anti-imperialism’ of idiots

Most peace activists want the other side to win. Nearly all would not protest against such a victory.

Leila's blog

DavOd8fWkAA2loL Cartoon criticizing selective outrage which only applies to chemical attacks, by Yaser Ahmad

Once more the western ‘anti-war’ movement has awoken to mobilise around Syria. This is the third time since 2011. The first was when Obama contemplated striking the Syrian regime’s military capability (but didn’t) following chemical attacks on the Ghouta in 2013, considered a ‘red line’. The second time was when Donald Trump ordered a strike which hit an empty regime military base in response to chemical attacks on Khan Sheikhoun in 2017. And today, as the US, UK and France take limited military action (targeted strikes on regime military assets and chemical weapons facilities) following a chemical weapons attack in Douma which killed at least 34 people, including many children who were sheltering in basements from bombing.

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How Harold Lloyd Filmed Safety Last!

Chaplin-Keaton-Lloyd film locations (and more)

108 - T Lloyd Safety Last Tally's Broadway Theatre below 2 crpThe image of Harold Lloyd hanging desperately from the hands of a skyscraper clock during Safety Last! (1923) is one of the great icons of film history.  Using maps, aerial views, and vintage photographs, my book Silent Visions shows how Harold filmed each of his five stunt-climbing comedies within the downtown Los Angeles Historic Core, while documenting the burgeoning urban skyline as it appears in the background of his films. [Note: I will be introducing Safety Last! on June 25, 2016 at the Orpheum Theater as part of the Los Angeles Conservancy’s Last Remaining Seats.]

On the roof of 908 S. Broadway from Safety Last! and the YouTube video clip The closing scene from Safety Last! (left) was filmed on the roof of 908 S. Broadway, the same building where the clock stunt climbing set was built. The same roof (right), now supporting the steel girder foundation for a large antennae, appears during the Criterion Collection Locations and Effects mini clip.

The slides…

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