March 12, 2011

That's A Real Bad Moon Rising

I see a Supermoon Rising?

Will the March 19 'Supermoon' Trigger Natural Disasters?
On March 19, the moon will swing around Earth more closely than it has in the past 18years, lighting up the night sky from just 221,567 miles (356,577 kilometers) away. On top of that, it will be full. And one astrologer believes it could inflict massive damage on the planet.

That's not an astronomist, that's an astrologist speaking here - one of the horoscope guys who writes lame prognostications in such general terms that even inanimate objects base their non-lives upon them. Like this one:

“Communicate your feelings to friends today, especially if you're disappointed in the way they're treating you. The void moon gives you a chance to tie up loose ends, either in a social situation like this or with a team you belong to. Saturn allows you to put your thoughts together, but don't be too inhibited to let the truth come out.”

Now, what does that mean? Whatever you want.
Back to Supermoon.

Richard Nolle, a noted astrologer who runs the website, has famously termed the upcoming full moon at lunar perigee (the closest approach during its orbit) an "extreme supermoon." When the moon goes super-extreme, Nolle says, chaos will ensue: Huge storms, earthquakes, volcanoes and other natural disasters can be expected to wreak havoc on Earth. (It should be noted that astrology is not a real science, but merely makes connections between astronomical and mystical events.)

In light of the horrific events in Japan, there are perhaps some effects of an extreme perigee that do not relate to Saturn's void fourth house. From the Daily Mail:

The powerful tsunami that today slammed into Japan's eastern coast comes just two days after warnings that the movement of the moon could trigger unpredictable events on Earth.

Astrologers predicted that on March 19 - a week tomorrow - the so-called 'supermoon' will be closer to Earth than at any time since 1992, just 221,567 miles away, and that its gravitational pull will bring chaos to Earth.

Others on the Internet have predicted it will cause further catastrophes such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

Coming just three weeks after the quake which devastated Christchurch in New Zealand killing hundreds, this latest disaster will only add fuel to their fire.

[...]However, scientists dismiss this as utter nonsense and that although it makes a good photo opportunity for astronomers it has no impact on Earth.

Dr David Harland, space historian and author, said: 'It's possible that the moon may be a kilometre or two closer to Earth than normal at a perigee, but it's an utterly insignificant event.'

Professor George Helffrich, a seismologist at the University of Bristol was equally dismissive.

'Complete nonsense. The moon has no significant effect on earthquake triggering.

'If the moon triggers "big" earthquakes, it would trigger the many of millions of times more "small" earthquakes that happen daily. There is no time dependence of those; hence no moon effect.'

In any event, it gives me an opportunity to slide a great song into the post.
Right about here.

Enjoy this in the comfort and safety of your backyard reinforced-concrete supermoon shelter.

This is the day that had to come.

I am leaving fulltime blogging to pursue the balance of my studies. It is important that Goomba News Network be handed over to a younger man with more energy, sharper wit, and infinitely stronger writing abilities than mine. Please make Sig94 feel at home as new CEO of Goomba News Network international Properties Ltd.

I know that DC, Rhod, Goodnight Vienna and I will be making occasional contributions, but the lion's share of the writing will be Siggie's. I'm sure that he'd be happy to welcome new talent to showcase their skills at the new, and greatly improved, GNN.

Thank you for so many fun years. May God bless you all.


March 11, 2011

Hooray! Somali Pirates Hung! No, Wait ...

These men should be hanging from a gibbet.

Instead of summary execution in international waters, the US Navy has transported Somali pirates to the US where they will be comfortably ensconced in a veritable heaven known as an American jail. Compared to the dung heap that was their former residence, any place in the USA is Paradise. From Fox News:

NORFOLK, Va. -- A federal grand jury has indicted 13 suspected pirates from Somalia and one from Yemen in the February hijacking of a yacht that left four Americans dead, the U.S. Justice Department said Thursday.

The men face piracy, kidnapping and firearms charges stemming from their efforts to hold the Americans for ransom, according to the indictment. If convicted, the men could face life in prison.

U.S. Attorney Neil MacBride said that more charges could be filed, and that a 15th suspected pirate was not charged because he was a juvenile and had a limited role in the hijacking.

The suspected pirates are scheduled to make an initial court appearance Thursday in Norfolk, which last year was the site of the first successful piracy prosecution in nearly 200 years.

The yacht's owners, Jean and Scott Adam of Marina del Rey, Calif., along with friends Bob Riggle and Phyllis Macay of Seattle, were shot to death after pirates took them hostage several hundred miles south of Oman.

It was the first time U.S. citizens have been killed in a wave of pirate attacks that have plagued the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean in recent years. The pirates are typically motivated by the potential for millions of dollars in ransom money.

The Adams, who were retired, had been sailing full-time on their 58-foot yacht, the Quest, delivering Bibles around the world. The indictment says at least three of the indicted men shot and killed the four Americans without provocation.

After indictment there will be a trial. No doubt America taxpayers will foot the bill for their attorneys who will joyfully file all kinds of briefs and motions and petitions. Nonetheless, the pirates will probably get life in prison. Bingo. Then the appeal process begins.

According to the CIA Factbook, the average life expectancy for a Somali male is only 49.5 years. With a life sentence in an American prison - they just hit the jackpot. If you are one of the people in the upper 50% income bracket who actually pay federal taxes, give yourself a pat on the back; you will support these murderous devils far beyond their life expectancy which should have been ended when they first encountered US armed forces. *sigh*

They will receive the best health care they have ever experienced as well as three squares a day and educational opportunities. They will bathe more often, get exercise breaks and visitation privileges. Go here to get an idea of the benefits available to federal prisoners. No doubt several of their mothers will come here to tearfully proclaim their son's innocense and then they will never leave - like Obongo's aunt.

There is no doubt in my mind that several of the pirates will find women whose brains are filled with shit. They will marry them and may even get conjugal visits and produce a family that you, the tax payer, will also have to support.

Rope is a lot cheaper. The last pirate executed in the US?

At exactly eleven in the morning, forty year old Albert W. Hicks, the last man tried, convicted and executed for the federal crime of piracy in the United States, was hanged on Bedloe's Island (now Liberty Island) with numerous boats carrying thousands of New Yorkers viewing the event. Tried in May, 1860 before the U.S. Circuit Court in New York City, Hicks was accused of killing and robbing the crew of the schooner, E.A. Johnson, in March 1860.

March 10, 2011

That was Then, This Is Now

It used to be that the affairs of our Great Nation were handled by serious men. It took serious men to fight the greatest military power in the 18th century World and send it scurrying back across the Atlantic. It took serious men to wage a civil war in order that the union of the Republic be spared. It took serious men, 12 million of them, to help win a world war.

These were our forefathers, serious men who could not tolerate nonsense, men who discussed serious matters and who sang serious songs. Like this one:

But, alas, times have changed. New "studies" indicate that we need more diversity in the military, we need more diversity in order to, well, to do something other than win wars I guess. Progressives insist that we need more of this type of recruit-

I swear, if you could paint a portrait on a turd it would resemble that preening Napolitano neoprene wand waver. If the progressives have their way, our military will be marching ala Monty Python:

It is serious, deadly serious business for our fellow patriots who serve in the Armed Forces; they must bear the consequences of failed foreign policy. It isn't fun being the pointy end of the spear.
The following video was provided by my buddy Charlie. It shows some serious training for our soldiers. It is over twelve minutes long, but if you have the time it is well worth it to see how modern techniques, including Hollywood special effects, are used in military training scenarios.

In Need Of Care & Protection

Can anyone recall the last time an MP needed £2m spent on one-off security arrangements to prevent him being kidnapped by his own constituents?

The LibDems' Spring Conference begins tomorrow at Sheffield City Hall and promises to be something worth watching for a change.

Officials in Whitehall have told the Mail that internet ‘chatter’ was picked up last week that militant students were plotting to infiltrate the cordon and seize Mr Clegg.
In a way I feel sorry for these idealistic youngsters with visions of a bright, utopian future but they should have questioned more deeply.  There's a good reason the LibDems have never been voted for in large numbers and there's a reason why they promise the earth pre-election.  The first is because some people actually take the time to read their crappy, illiberal manifestos and the second is because they think they'll never  have to account for themselves.

Well, the LibDems' day of reckoning has arrived.

The Party is also in the red since donations dried up - soon the state will be coming to the taxpayer with the begging bowl again, asking for political parties to be publicly-funded. If it ever goes ahead it will be interesting to see how they decide what share of that taxpayer-funding goes to the BNP.

Clegg's 'ring of steel' - giving a whole new meaning to care in the community.

Here's a reminder of where the LibDems won seats in the 2010 GE.  It was an insult to the British electorate, and particularly the English, to invite these 3rd party losers into a coalition government.

Calling England

March 9, 2011

Calling Martin Sheen, Calling Martin Sheen

Please pick up your son.

He's scaring the horses.

Hate To Break It To Them, But Something's Missing

It's not often that I agree with Christopher Hitchens, but his eloquent treatise on the spate of Muslim civilian rebellions in the Near East struck a responsive chord in me. I have long believed, and history is replete with illustrations, that many revolutions are usually an exercise that replaces one form of tyranny with another that is even worse. From Vanity Fair:

Surveying the seismic-looking events in Tunis and Cairo in January and February of this year, various observers immediately began by comparing them to discrepant precedents. Was this the fall of the Arab world’s Berlin Wall? Or was it, perhaps, more like the “people power” movements in Asia in the mid-1980s? The example of Latin America, with its overdue but rapid escape from military rule in the past decades, was also mentioned. Those with longer memories had fond recollections of the bloodless “red carnation” revolution in Portugal, in 1974: a beautiful fiesta of democracy which also helped to inaugurate Spain’s emancipation from four decades in the shadow of General Franco.

For some reason Hitch does not bother to compare these events with the greatest revolution in modern history - the American Revolution. But Hitch goes on to stroke his ego by relating some of the changes in governments that he has witnessed, the key phrase being "witnessed," not "participated":

"I was a small-time eyewitness to those “bliss was it in that dawn” episodes, having been in Lisbon in 1974, South Korea in 1985, Czechoslovakia in 1988, Hungary and Romania in 1989, and Chile and Poland and Spain at various points along the transition. I also watched some of the early stages of the historic eruption in South Africa."

but you have to slog through several more paragraphs before you get to the point that he really wants to make:

Not a single one of these pregnant conditions, or preconditions, exists in Egypt. Neither in exile nor in the country itself is there anybody who even faintly resembles a genuine opposition leader. With the partial exception of the obsessively cited Muslim Brotherhood, the vestigial political parties are emaciated hulks. The strongest single force in the state and the society—the army—is a bloated institution heavily invested in the status quo. As was once said of Prussia, Egypt is not a country that has an army, but an army that has a country. More depressing still, even if there existed a competent alternative government, it is near impossible to imagine what its program might be.

Hitch misses the boat completely. He looks for a political party to take the reins of government, but a political party is based on the premise that government should be organized in a manner that conforms to a particular philosophy. There are no real competing philosophies in these countries. There is Islam and facism (the statist Baath parties). Both control their populations through cohersion.

Hitch does not mention the Grand Revolution that spawned one of the greatest nations on the face of the earth. The nations of the Near East and North Africa, save for Israel, lack a common custom of self rule. As English colonists, the Founding Fathers had a centuries old tradition in the elements of constitutional safe guards for individual freedoms and self-government through the Magna Carta (1215) and the English Parliament (1265).

The Protestant Reformation brought about the Rule of Law over the Rule of Kings (see Rutherford's Lex, Rex) and the limitations on absolutism as practiced by many English kings. There was never a Muslim Reformation. There is only Allah and ten thousand imams declaring what is or isn't haram.

The Muslims have Sharia Law which has remained basically unchanged since the 8th Century. Western influence has moderated one school of Sharia (Hanifi) but the other three primary schools are regressive and oppressive religious constructs. There are no self-rule legacies for Muslims.

In the former British Empire there is Magna Carta. In America there is the Declaration of Independence. There is the Constitution - one of the most magnificent documents ever crafted by the hand of Man. The USA is the oldest government on the face of the planet. No other government existing in 1787 is still existent today and it is a tribute to these men that we have such a stable form of government where succession is achieved through the ballot rather than the bullet.

In Muslim countries there is Koran and the sword. There were the Caliphates: the Umayyad followed by the Abbasid, the Fatimid, and finally the Ottoman Dynasty which slaughtered 1.5 million Armenians. The Caliphs (literally "successor") ruled the Ummah (Muslim world or community) ever since Mohammed died in 632 AD; since the end of the Caliphate in 1924 there has much controversy over how to once again select a new Caliph.

The citizens of Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen may be fearlessly enthusiastic and dedicated to the overthrow of despots, but they are so screwed and it is their own culture that condemns them.

March 8, 2011

Hamburger Helper

There is a new "shotgun" in town. It is now being used by US Forces in Afghanistan. It is a Bofors Carl Gustav 84mm recoilless rifle with special munitions that allow it to launch a projectile with 1,100 steel darts. It is incredibly effective. One US soldier who used it to kill 25 terrorists called it a "meat grinder."

There are few things more destructive at close range than a shotgun. To have a weapon that can deliver such a devastating blow at 100 meters is of great comfort to the troops that are using it.

Of course since it does exactly what it is supposed to do - inflict death over a wide swath of territory - it attracts the usual crowd of protestors.

My daughter is assigned to a FOB near Kandahar. I hope she gets two of these things.

Lawful Rebellion Spreads in Gt. Britain

These are the scenes in Birkenhead County Court yesterday when Freemen attempted the arrest of the judge for contempt of court and treason.

Roger Hayes, leader of the British Constitution Group, has been charged by Wirral Council with non-payment of Council Tax.

His stand has won support from all over the country and demonstrators travelled miles to protest outside the court building.
As the case got under way yesterday, Mr Hayes repeatedly demanded district judge Michael Peake say if he was "on oath of office".
In response Judge Peake insisted it was a "properly constituted court", and said if Mr Hayes had a complaint, he could take up later.
But Mr Hayes persisted and when he did not get an answer he was satisfied with, said: "Sir, I am obliged to arrest you for contempt of court and treason."
Two supporters of Mr Hayes then attempted to arrest the judge but were stopped by police. More demonstrators then burst into Court One of Birkenhead county court.
The judge was quickly ushered out of the court by officials, saying as he left "this case is adjourned, I’m afraid" as more people pressed in, many filming with mobile phones. One demonstrator even took the judge’s seat, while police officers called for reinforcements.
One man was handcuffed which inflamed the protesters as dozens more pressed into the court room and shouts of "take the handcuffs off" resounded around the room.
Police attempted to take the handcuffed man outside but were blocked by people who demanded he be released – and an hour-long stand-off then followed as more police arrived.

More scenes: Outside; Inside

Full article HERE

Calling England

March 7, 2011

Man's Best Friend

It appears that the tragic death of a British soldier broke the heart of his bomb-sniffing dog. From the UK Telegraph

There was a sad story yesterday about the deaths of a soldier and his dog. Lance Corporal Liam Tasker was killed in a gun battle with the Taliban in Afghanistan this week. His devoted bomb-sniffing dog Theo, witnessed his master’s death, then shortly after suffered a seizure and also passed away. It’s been said that the dog “died of a broken heart”. Is this possible? Or is it just sentimental tosh, made up to make people feel better in some way about a tragic outcome?

It’s a difficult subject to analyse, but there are certainly plenty of anecdotes of animals that seem to have suffered severe grief-type reactions after forced separations from owners.

Theo's ashes are accompanying Cpl. Tasker's coffin back to Scotland.

More here.

March 6, 2011

Disturbing scenes from the Egyptian uprising. The Middle East is obviously in turmoil.

Let's face it. Riots break out and rioters are
rarely prepared for the chaos of battle.
This Islamic zealot seeks shelter
under either a rusted-out wok
or the hubcap from a 47 Mercury.

This revolutionary youth has
manufactured protective armor from
what looks to be an aluminum stockpot,
red yarn, and some sort of flotation device.

This Muslim Brotherhood radical has
liberated a wastebasket and seems to
be pelting the government building
with a tuna sandwich on sliced wheat.
The guy behind him throws
like my 4-year old granddaughter.

This young fellow seems to be the
self-appointed leader of some militant
fundamentalist movement insisting that
Allah wants his followers to scotch-tape
cinnamon buns and baguettes to their heads.