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Archive for January 2007

Cheapskates

Europeans talk big about ‘fighting climate change’ yet balk at putting the Euros out for their belief:

Despite a groundswell of support for measures to fight climate change, Europeans are reluctant to pay extra for clean cars. In some cases they resist features such as stop-start mechanisms, which some drivers fear will hamper their ability to merge at roundabouts.

Tania

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Sign The Pledge

Have you signed The Pledge?

Is Senate Resolution for Defeat in Iraq Stalled?

Good news! Major Garret reports on Special Report with Brit Hume that the Biden resolution which opposes the surge of troops President Bush has ordered to Iraq is stalled and that it is likely that none of the resolutions (how many are there now?) will get any further action in the Senate this week.

Use the links below to contact the key GOP players in this fight against failure and defeat:

Senator McConnell: Phone: (202) 224-2541 Fax: (202) 224-2499 E-mail here: http://mcconnell.senate.gov/contact_form.cfm

Senator Lott: Phone: 202-224-6253 Fax: (202)-224-2262 E-mail here: http://lott.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Email

Senator Kyl: Phone: (202) 224-4521 Fax: (202) 224-2207 E-mail here: http://kyl.senate.gov/contact.cfm

Senator Ensign: Phone: (202)-224-6244 Fax: 202-228-2193. E-mail here: http://ensign.senate.gov/forms/email_form.cfm

Senator McCain: Phone: (202)-224-2235 Fax (202)-228-2862. E-mail here: http://www.exploremccain.com/Contact/

Senator Warner: Phone: (202) 224-2023 Fax: (202) 224-6295. E-mail here: http://warner.senate.gov/contact/contactme.cfm

Senator Cornyn: Phone:202-224-2934 Fax: 202-228-2856. E-mail here: http://cornyn.senate.gov/contact/index.html

Senator Smith: Phone: 202-224-3752 Fax: 202-228-3997. E-mail here: http://gsmith.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Home

Senator Coleman: Phone: 202-224-5641 Fax: 202-224-1152.E-mail here: http://coleman.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.ContactForm

Or modify this letter and email it to the Senators:

Dear Senator X,

I am writing this letter to express my deep concern over the forthcoming non-binding resolution proposed by Democrat Senators in opposition to President Bush’s strategy to protect the fledgling Iraqi government and to secure a victory against Islamofascists bent on eviscerating Iraq and Western society.

In the past, the House and Senate expressed their intent for victory in Iraq by overwhelmingly voting in favor of non-binding resolutions supporting victory in Iraq and the war on terror. This year, the new Senate is poised at reversing this course, acquiesce to the demands of terrorists and approve a resolution dictating the terms of our surrender. In the State of the Nation Address, the President points out it is uncharacteristic of Americans to fail to keep our promises, abandon our friends and weaken our national security. Whatever you voted for regarding Iraq, you did not vote for failure.

Secretary Gates outlines the calamity that would “haunt our nation, impair our credibility, and endanger Americans for decades to come.” Our nation has traveled down this road before and its repercussions lead to the events of 9/11/01. This is the peace that comes from appeasing terrorists.

Senators, like civilians, are no experts in counter-terrorist strategy and guerilla warfare. In order to form a balanced stance on the situation in Iraq, one must consider the opinion and advice of those who possess expert knowledge on the subject – namely those in the Iraq theatre. General Petraeus, in his statement before the Senate Armed Service Committee, reminds us of what is at risk by voting in support of the non-binding resolution:

“No matter how well-intentioned, a resolution being opposed to this new strategy is a vote of no confidence in you. No matter how well intentioned, the enemy will see it as a weakened resolve.”

Ayman Zawahri in a statement after the November 2006 elections claimed “the Mujahideen, the Muslim Ummah’s vanguard in Afghanistan and Iraq, are the ones who one won this election.” Atrocity and terror are not political weapons, yet this new Congress has allowed terrorists to use these bloody tactics to influence our policies. A vote in support of this non-binding resolution validates that claim and encourages the enemy to kill Americans in Iraq, Afghanistan and in the United States.

I need not remind you that rooting out terrorists wherever they may hide in this world is not just work…it is THE work of this government. It is the responsibility of our elected representatives to work with and not merely in opposition of the Executive branch. Thus far, the only thing resembling a “plan” from the Legislative branch is nothing short of surrender. This is absolutely unacceptable – the American people expect better from our elected representatives. I urge you to support a democratic Iraq and the strong desire of the American people for victory by voting against this non-binding resolution.

I need not remind you that rooting out terrorists wherever they may hide in this world is not just work…it is THE work of this government. It is the responsibility of our elected representatives to work with and not merely in opposition of the Executive branch. Thus far, the only thing resembling a “plan” from the Legislative branch is nothing short of surrender. This is absolutely unacceptable – the American people expect better from our elected representatives. I urge you to support a democratic Iraq and the strong desire of the American people for victory by voting against this non-binding resolution.

Information shamelessly borrowed from Mikes America

Tania

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BSG: Taking A Break From All Your Worries

This is going to be an ugly episode for Kara/Lee shippers.

Additionally, Baltar gets tortured on Galactica.

Tania

C&C at the Academy of Music

Charles and Camilla enjoying an evening concert celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Academy of Music.

Welcome International House surfers!

The royal jewels were on display last night at the Academy, The Duchess sported a ruby and diamond necklace that seems to be a new acquistion to the royal jewel collection. British newspaper “The Daily Mail” reports Clarence House will not confirm if the necklace was a gift from the Prince of Wales. The Daily Mail goes on to reflect “The city’s richest dignitaries were in attendance – with many of the women dressed in furs and sparkling diamond accessories – although none quite as opulent as Camilla’s.” Since when does opulence define good taste?

There were mixed reactions by royal watchers to the outfit and necklace worn by the Duchess of Cornwall last night.

Tania

Where in the World are my Genes?


After two years of mulling over the idea, I’ve ordered the Participation Kit for National Geographic’s Genographic Project.

What is this, you ask?


The National Geographic Society, IBM, geneticist Spencer Wells, and the Waitt Family Foundation have launched the Genographic Project, a five-year effort to understand the human journey—where we came from and how we got to where we live today. This unprecedented effort will map humanity’s genetic journey through the ages.

With a simple and painless cheek swab you can sample your own DNA and submit it to the lab.Your results will reveal your deep ancestry along a single line of direct descent (paternal or maternal) and show the migration paths they followed thousands of years ago. Your results will also place you on a particular branch of the human family tree.

An interesting concept that provides a good primer on human genetics and human pre-history. A cursory review on the net reveals others bloggers who have particpated in this study:

Pop’s Blog
CreativeBits
Bill Hertha
PrayingMantis
Anand’s Blog
The Personal Genome

Tania

You Can Call Me Princess…

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Her Most Serene Highness Lady Skye the Innocent of Midhoop St Giggleswich
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Tania

C&C in Philly

PHILADELPHIA – JANUARY 27



Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales inspects members of the First Troop Philadelphia City Cavalry in front of Independence Hall January 27, 2007 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall inspects her flowers

Tania

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Will the Real Jamil Please Stand Up

CFBleachers, a guest blogger at Flopping Aces has posted a detailed summary of the Story of Jamil – Fake, but Accurate:

This being my first foray into guest blogging at Curt’s site, I want to make sure that I put all the proper pieces in all the right places. And I am going to pick a subject that continues to cause me the most irritation. There appears to be slipping into the current lexicon of everyone commenting on the “Jamilgate” story, a certain lax attitude toward his “proven existence”.

I think it’s high time we get this straight once and for all…Jamil Hussein does not exist. The guy playing Jamil Hussein exists. There is a difference and it serves only the AP and their apologists and fellow travelers of distortion to keep referencing his existence as jamil.

Eason Jordan was the first out of the gate to my knowledge in attempting to carve half a loaf out for the AP’s credibility and pass along the glossed over reality about Jamil’s existence.
On January 5th, he posted a post that was titled:

The Jamil Hussein Fuss: All Sullied Mistakes, Lessons Learned, Lingering Questions”

Except for my money, he points out the wrong mistakes, tries to get the usual moral equivalency argument into play, doesn’t really learn the real lesson and asks the wrong questions.

Jordan starts out with the following:
“The Associated Press and the AP’s supporters surely are breathing a sigh of relief now that the Iraqi Interior Ministry has confirmed to the AP that elusive Iraqi Police Captain Jamil Hussein is genuine. This comes six weeks after Iraqi and U.S. officials insisted the frequent AP news source, Captain Hussein, was non-existent and that AP reporting attributed to him was baseless.”
The problem is, of course…that Jamil Hussein is not genuine by any sane definition of the word, and the AP reporting attributed to him, in many respects is now proven baseless. “Jamil Hussein” did not exist on the rolls, the mosques in question were not destroyed, one of them was already abandoned at the time of alleged incident, no Sunni’s were forcibly removed from the mosque, none were doused in kerosene, nor set on fire, nor shot in the head, nor watched by coalition forces, nor taken to a hospital morgue, or a cemetery. None of the civilians in the story, including women and children were murdered, and their houses were not burned to the ground. Virtually every gruesome aspect that made the story stand out…was false. Yet what does Jordan ask us to do? Why take OUR share of the blame, of course…because we simply didn’t believe.
“All the key players in the Jamil Hussein controversy have been sullied in this process.” “Iraqi officials and U.S. military spokesmen look foolish for making the mistake of flatly stating in late November that there was no Iraqi police captain by the name of Jamil Hussein. Those clumsy, baseless statements were unfair to the AP. Those erroneous statements — and their statements questioning the information the AP attributed to Captain Hussein — triggered the six-week-long controversy that followed.”
Oh, really? They were asked to search the records for “Jamil Hussein” a police captain in one of two districts. (neither of which, by the way….are within the confines of virtually EVERY SINGLE INCIDENT of the 61 in which he is used as the “source”)
“Jamil Hussein made a mistake by waiting six weeks to speak out on this matter.”
Please pardon me, I missed the part where “Jamil Hussein” spoke out on this matter. Some guy named JGXX spoke out and said he was NOT the AP’s source. How exactly does that comport with the statement above? The statement above leads the unwitting reader to assume facts not only not in evidence, but facts that are utterly false and misleading.
“Another mistake: the AP took too long to provide irrefutable evidence of Captain Hussein’s existence.”
Again, please pardon me…when did this happen? I haven’t heard a peep out of them when it was brought to light that JGXX is actually the guy’s name. In fact, they insisted that Jamil Hussein is his real name and that he used his real name, when other lesser “sources” dared not. Either this guy is JGXX or he isn’t.
“The AP’s most strident critics were wrong to accept the word of U.S. and Iraqi officials as the absolute truth while dismissing the AP’s sourcing, stories, and explanations as outright lies.”
Ahhhhh. Don’t you love the smell of moral equivalency in the morning? The AP’s “sourcing” utilizing “Jamil Hussein” for events outside his district dozens of times…is still in question. And their explanations, such as they were…were intentionally misleading and by every reasonable deduction, the equivalent of painting a false picture and distorting the truth. To make it absolutely clear…Jamil Hussein is not his name, he had no knowledge of events outside his district that made him anywhere near a reliable source and by all appearances, he was simply the mouthpiece for subsources passing along whisper campaigns and urban legends.
“In the end, the AP did the right thing — proving Jamil Hussein’s existence — but in the wrong time frame.”
Let’s get this straight. No such thing has ever happened. And it’s high time we stop acting as if it did. Some people are wont to suggest that “a guy” existed and that’s enough. Sorry. That’s simply wrong. Once they began using him as the ubersource, for virtually every event in every district around Baghdad, who he was, how he knew what they were vouching that he knew as their “official” police source…then who he is and was, is in play.

When they upped the ante by suggesting that he used his real name, while other lesser sources dared not, they eliminated the defense that they were using a pseudonym for him to protect him. As it stands now, he is neither a viable or proper source, his name is not Jamil Hussein, the stories attributed to him are not worthy of belief on their face and the AP has failed TO PROVE OTHERWISE.

The AP has been found to have foisted a non-reliable person upon the reading public, who as it turns out is virtually 180 degrees opposite from what they intentionally misled the reading public to believe. He is not someone with the full force of “official knowledge” about events on the ground, he is NOT a person who was using his “real name” while others dared not, he is not someone upon whom we can rely to give us unbiased, unslanted, accounts of “facts” on the ground. He is not a “source” by any reasonable definition of the word. He is not even “Jamil Hussein”.
All that the AP has “proven”, is that it will use parsed language to disguise who their sources are and what they “know”, how they come to their “information” and when caught, what they knew and when they knew it, when a “source” is found to be unreliable.

What they have “proven” is they will cover up, stonewall and obfuscate. And their fellow travelers have fallen strangely silent.

Let’s not let their silence fool us. Their “message” is still making its way into our lexicon. And we, at least…should be vigilant with the truth. For us, the truth is more important than than the leftist message. Let’s not make ourselves voluntary slaves to that leftist message.

Tania

Man Friday

One of the benefits of increased Co2 levels in the atmosphere….

Tania

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Environmental Hysteria Week

How many times has you read of the imminent danger posed to this planet by ‘runaway greenhouse gases’?


The world’s leading science journals report that glaciers are melting ten times faster than previously thought, that atmospheric greenhouse gases have reached levels not seen for millions of years, and that species are vanishing as a result of climate change. They also report of extreme weather events, long-term droughts, and rising sea levels.

Statements like the one above beg the questions – What are greenhouse gases and does the Earth behave like an actual Greenhouse?

Atmospheric greenhouse gases are comprised of water vapor, CO2, N20, Sulfur Dioxide, methane and miscellaneous gases such as CFC. Most proponents of a human based global warming catastrophe and staff of The Weather Channel point to CO2 pollution from industrialized nations as the primary cause of ‘global warming’.

Human based contribution to greenhouse gases amounts to 0.28% when factoring in water vapor – the most significant greenhouse gas, which happens to be of natural origin. The graph below compares natural and human based contributions to the greenhouse effect. Human activities such as agriculture, manufacturing, transportation and power generation contribute only slightly towards the total greenhouse gas effect.


Despite the lack of any meaningful correlation between CO2 levels and Earth’s temperature, The Kyoto Protocol demands mandatory 30% reductions of CO2 emissions from signatory nations. Vast sums of money are being poured into the ‘problem’ of global warming by the nations, primarily European, who signed up to the Kyoto Protocol – pledging to achieve drastic reductions in CO2 emissions within a defined time frame. Then one day, the Earth belches: A 2005 Cranfield University study revealed “vast quantities of carbon released from British soils since 1978…. effectively canceling out the UK’s recent successes at reducing [CO2] levels.” CO2 is far from being the determining factor in global temperature as this chart so neatly illustrates and the proponents of the Kyoto Protocol so adeptly ignore.


Do Greenhouse gases act like an actual Greenhouse?

In one word: NO.

The term ‘greenhouse effect’ as applied to ‘global warming’ is a terrible misnomer. An actual greenhouse acts as a physical barrier to suppress the actions of convection – nature’s way of transferring heat from an area of high temperatures to an area of lower temperatures by the displacement of the cooler molecules by the warmer molecules. A good example would be the interior temperature of a car with windows closed at midday. Got it? Greenhouse gases let solar radiation pass through to the surface of the earth, then slows the return energy back into space; unlike a greenhouse, they do not ‘trap’ energy forever in our atmosphere.

The Sun emits high-energy short wave radiation while the Earth reflects back longer wave radiation. The Earth absorbs more energy – in the form of radiation- than it releases back into space. This is an important point, if the Earth did not have a net gain of energy (heat), provided by the slow return back to space, Earth’s global temperature would resemble that of the Moon.

The take home message: Despite attempts to label atmospheric carbon dioxide a “pollutant” it is, in fact, an essential trace gas, the increasing abundance of which is a bonus for the biomass globally – 10 out of 10 plants agree!

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Tania