Day: May 29, 2018

#Darwinawards 14-year-old Melanie Griffith at home with her pet lion, Neil, 1971


Al Jazeera – Cricket’s Match Fixers

The Inquiring Mind

A very interesting documentary and well worth looking at. The money now washing about in cricket makes these claims plausible
Al Jazeera

Since this documentary was completed, Jeevantha Kulatunga has contacted Al Jazeera. He denies any involvement in match-fixing and says Al Jazeera’s allegations are “false” and had been “deliberately used to tarnish my image and reputation as a cricketer and coach”. Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit exposes the global scale of match-fixing in cricket. Our undercover investigation reveals how criminal gangs bribe players and officials to fix matches and parts of matches – and make millions from betting on guaranteed outcomes. In secretly filmed meetings, we expose criminals who target the fast-growing Twenty20 tournaments and Test matches, the highest level of the international game. We film international players agreeing to fix matches and show how spot-fixes appear to have been carried out at Test matches involving some of the world’s…

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Victor Davis Hanson: Germany and the Unwinnable WWII

American Elephants

I have no idea how many books have been written on World War II. Many of them important, but Victor Davis Hanson has explained it. I gave my oldest son, who is really interested in the war, and has toured the battlefields in Europe,The Second World Wars for Christmas. He usually mutters about the somewhat conservative books I give him, but he made a special point of thanking me for it. He said it has made it all make sense, and he loved the book. So there are glimmerings of hope.

If you have not yet ordered the book, you’ll be glad that you did. The preface explains the title, and why Victor Davis Hanson was the correct one to tell that story. Memorial Day would be a good time to indulge.

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Fred Korematsu


The NY Times has a rather nicely written editorial today honoring Fred Korematsu.

As you may recall, Mr. Korematsu was one of citizens interred under FDR’s Executive Order 9066. Initially, he went on the lamb but was ultimately arrested and convicted of violating the internment order. He received 5 years probation and spent the next few years in de facto forced labor at the Central Utah Relocation Center. Mr. Korematsu appealed his conviction all the way to the Supreme Court (Korematsu v. United States). Alas, the Court refused to overturn the conviction (6-3), viewing the internment as justified by the security risk posed by Japanese Americans.

Although the decision deserves a reading, let me simply quote Justice Robert Jackson’s dissent:

A military order, however unconstitutional, is not apt to last longer than the military emergency. Even during that period, a succeeding commander may revoke it all. But once…

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The BBC’s double helping ‘Nakba’ backgrounder

BBC Watch

On May 15th the BBC News website published a backgrounder titled “Why Nakba is the Palestinians’ most sombre day, in 100 and 300 words“.

“Palestinians have been protesting at Gaza’s border with Israel in the lead up to the the [sic] most mournful day in their calendar. The date, which falls on 15 May each year, commemorates events which caused Palestinians to lose their homes and become refugees. They refer to it as al-Nakba, or the Catastrophe.

Here it is briefly explained, in both 100 words and 300 words.”

Why the BBC thought its audiences needed a double helping of explanations was not explained.

In the 100 word version BBC audiences were told that:

“On 14 May 1948, Israel declared independence, and in a war which began the next day, up to 750,000 Palestinians who had lived on that land fled or were expelled from their homes.”

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Animal “Rights” Thugs Terrorize UK Butchers

Green Jihad

Terrorists with the Animal Liberation Front are terrorizing the owners of a family-run butcher shop in Ashford, England. According to the UK Daily Mail, the Marlow Butchers shop has been open for over 50 years, but because of numerous messages on their Facebook page and graffiti messages scrawled on their store front, the Marlow family is living in fear.

Not only does Marlow Butchers receive negative reviews from animal rights sympathizers, but the Marlows have even gotten continuous threats to have their business physically destroyed by either firebomb or smashing windows. They can’t understand why their establishment is the target of this harassment campaign when supermarkets have butchers and sell meat too. Ironically enough, the paints and glues ALF punks use to vandalize the Marlow’s butcher shop contain animal by-products too.

Kent police are investigating the incidents and the local community has been supportive. None the less, the ALF…

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California Doctor Faces License Revocation Over Homeopathic Sound Files That He Claims Can Cure Everything From Malaria To Ebola


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Italy 2018: Interim government, early elections

people forget how powerful some european presidents are in government formation and dissolving parliament.

Fruits and Votes

It seemed as if the Lega and Five Star Movement (M5s) were about to form a coalition, and then things turned. The mostly ceremonial President refused the coalition’s proposed finance minister, and now the coalition plan is off.

President Sergio Mattarella has tasked Carlo Cottarelli, a non-politician (till now, that is), to form a government, with elections to be held in early 2019. However, if the government is unable to get a program approved in parliament, which the BBC (second link above) says it probably can’t, elections could be this August.

Further, the BBC reports, “A source from Five Star told Reuters the party could campaign with the League in a fresh vote.”

Recall from the previous F&V discussion that the new electoral system is not proportional–although about 5/8 of the seats are indeed allocated proportionally. The other 3/8 are elected in single-seat districts, and thus it is a mixed-member…

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