California - There They Go
With student achievement scores in the toilet, the Golden State is behaving more like a pompous banana republic with internationalist delusions than the great engine of progress we once knew.
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What is more, regardless of one’s opinion about the prosecution, to read the files, with their graphically twined accusations of sexual violence and racial taunts, is to understand better why this case has radiated so powerfully from the edgily cohabited Southern world of Duke and Durham.Ok, I just finished reading it - it's pretty much a run-through of the files. Much of the evidence is based on the girl's condition days later, while the information gathered that night tends to be rather exculpatory. I think the anonymous comment referenced below is a more credible account.
when World War II loomed, Britain -- especially and importantly Britain -- did precious little to stop it. The warnings of Churchill -- "believe me, it may be the last chance . . ." -- were ignored, and the government under Neville Chamberlain obstinately pursued a policy that forever after made the word appeasement one of the most odious in history. Somehow, though, it looks like 1938 all over again.Oh yeah, just like it. In 1938 you had a fully-mobilized industrial power building an awesome military arsenal and annexing its neighbors. Similarly, in Lebanon, we have Hezbollah -
you don't have to have Churchillian prescience to see that what happened once in Lebanon can happen again. Hezbollah's avowed aim is to eradicate Israel. Listen to what it says. Pay attention. It will renew its attacks the first chance it gets. This is why it exists.Just reading these snippets you might think Mr. Cohen is being ironic, but deadly serious he is.
My sense is that popular opinion is likely to gravitate toward one of two positions.Iranian aggression? What Iranian aggression? He goes on:
(1)The Middle East is a hopeless cauldron of hatred. We should focus on homeland security, stay out of the Middle East, and have as little interaction with the Muslim world as possible; or
(2)A major war is inevitable, so that we need to get ready for it. Nothing else will stop Iranian aggression, and nothing else will stifle the funding, sponsoring, and glorification of terrorists.
In my own thinking, I tend to vacillate between (1) and (2). The advantage of (2) is that it helps align our interests with the UK and Israel, which are not in a position to adopt (1). The UK, with its larger and more radical Muslim population, necessarily is affected by international Muslim belligerence. For Israel, staying out of the Middle East is not an option.Okay, so at least Arnold doesn't appear to think that the U.S. is threatened by Iran. But the UK? Because of their "large" muslim population? Fighting a war against Iran is supposed to help that situation how? But regardless, the UK could just expel a good chunk of that population if they should feel threatened - but, no, easier to just have a war. At least he says he's ambivalent - though I must say my cat isn't at all ambivalent about how he feels about mice - he's pretty sure they're prey, and not the other way around.
But, alas, there's nothing which we would recognise as 'reasonable' about President Ahmadinejad, the small, bearded blacksmith's son from the slums of Tehran - who denies the existence of the Holocaust, promises to 'wipe Israel off the map' and who, moreover, urges Iranians to 'prepare to take over the world'.Now, if you haven't, read Steve Sailer's latest review of the Iranian armed forces. Then consider the last line of this article, and I challenge you to keep from laughing:
But nuclear-weapon technology in the hands of an Iranian President obsessed with ' fruitcake theology' and the destruction of all 'infidels' is something which should keep us all awake at night.
Did anyone, one man asked, know of girls’ camps willing to hire adult males as counselors? Meanwhile, elsewhere in cyberspace, the second group celebrated the news that one of their own had been offered a job leading a boys’ cabin at a sleep-away camp.
The most frequent job mentioned, however, was schoolteacher. A number of self-described teachers shared detailed observations about children in their classes, including events they considered sexual, like a second-grade boy holding his crotch during class.
Some pedophiles revealed that they gained access to children through their own families. Some discussed how they married to be close to the children from their wives’ previous marriages.
Using deception to gain access to children is a recurring theme. For example, on a site for adults attracted to boys, someone calling himself Vespucci asked in June whether a single man could become a foster father. The respondents cautioned Vespucci to disguise his pedophilia.
Pointers on ways to get close to children were frequent topics. One man posted an Internet “help wanted” advertisement from a single mother seeking an overnight baby sitter for her 4-year-old daughter.
Pedophiles see themselves as part of a social movement to gain acceptance of their attractions. The effort has a number of tenets: that pedophiles are beneficial to minors, that children are psychologically capable of consenting and that therapists manipulate the young into believing they are harmed by such encounters.Pedophilia is obviously a serious dysfunction. While it is incredibly politically incorrect to associate it with homosexuality, both involve the focusing of sexual desire towards biologically barren targets. In neither case does it seem likely that a gene for such behavior is likely to have evolved never mind maintain itself in noticable numbers. (While pedophiles can and sometimes do have children - whom they may then abuse - they obviously are not as prolific as the general population). But perhaps pedophiles are rare enough (<1 in 10,000) that a 'pedophilia' gene might be the cause. That these people seem to not understand how bizarrely abnormal their desires are argues that the problem is organic and not some acquired psychological quirk. If a microbe can relieve a rat of its fear of cats - indeed, even build an attraction - then I don't think screwing up someone's sexual-desire wiring seems too far-fetched.
He called the players hooligans and said he abhorred the gang-like rape accompanied by racial slurs. He disparaged rich Duke students whose daddies could hire expensive lawyers to get them out of trouble. He told reporters that DNA tests would tell precisely who was involved in the attack.
And Nifong made a series of factual assertions that contradicted his own files: He suggested the players used condoms; he accused the players of erecting a wall of silence to thwart investigators; and he said the woman had been hit, kicked and strangled.
The medical and police records show that the victim had said no condom was used, that police had interviewed three players at length and taken their DNA samples and that the accuser showed no significant bruises or injuries.
Isabella Miller-Jenkins has two mothers, the Vermont Supreme Court ruled yesterday. The court rejected a host of arguments from Isabella’s biological mother, Lisa Miller, that her former lesbian partner, Janet Jenkins, should be denied parental rights.The couple were separated when the child was just over a year old. The birth mother then moved to Virginia, where a court has since denied the lesbian partner any visitation rights and refused any recognition of Vermont civil unions. Meanwhile, a court in Vermont granted the partner visitation rights and has cited the birth mother with contempt for violating the order. The child is now 4 years old.
To deny the children of same-sex partners, as a class, the security of a legally recognized relationship with their second parent serves noo legitimate state interest...our paramount concern should be with the effect of our laws on the reality of children's lives...[T]he advancement of reproductive technologies and society's recognition of alternative lifestyles...have produced families in which a biological, and therefore a legal, connection is no longer the sole organizing principle. But it is the courts that are required to define, declare and protect the rights of children raised in these families, usually upon their dissolution.Very true, but how does a second mother (or father) fit with the rights of children, exactly? Do these justices imagine 4-year old Isabella, wide eyes looking up at her mother, asking where's her father? Then where's my other mommy? Do they foresee legions of single-parent raised children on reaching maturity, sensing a gaping hole in their identity, striking out in search of their mothers' discarded lesbian lovers?