“In order to avoid offending religious fundamentalists, our National Park Service is under orders to suspend its belief in geology,” stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch. “It is disconcerting that the official position of a national park as to the geologic age of the Grand Canyon is ‘no comment.’”
In August 2003, Park Superintendent Joe Alston attempted to block the sale
at park bookstores of Grand Canyon: A Different View by Tom Vail, a book claiming the Canyon developed on a biblical rather than an evolutionary time scale. NPS Headquarters, however, intervened and overruled Alston. To quiet the
resulting furor, NPS Chief of Communications David Barna told reporters and members of Congress that there would be a high-level policy review of the issue.
The entire charade of religious sensitivity reeks of intellectual bankruptcy, if
one is able to support the beliefs, dogma and practices with argument then one
hardly needs to plea for exemption. It is predominately those beliefs, dogmas
and practices which are unsupportable which individuals will evoke sensitivity
for. I find this tactic not only intellectually reprehensible but exceedingly
revealing. It doesn’t say much for the beliefs in question if, rather than allow
the evidence and support for them surface, one attempts to prohibit their being
questioned or criticized in the first place.
Now I do realize that a Secular Humanist probably isn't the best source from which to draw quotes, but it really goes to the heart of the matter at hand. I am sick, and I am tired, and I am sick and tired. I'm tired of this elephant sitting in each and every room as we try to discuss the problems of the day. Yes, you friggin' goofballs, you have the right in this country to believe anything that you want. You want to believe that the Earth is a big floating ball of magical putty that "God" bends and shapes at his will? OK. I, however, have the right to expect that my government has the right to be objective and scientifically honest with respect to matters such as the formation of the Grand Canyon or the formation of this planet.
I am also not the least bit sympathetic to anyone who becomes offended when a cherished belief of theirs is questioned, criticized or repudiated. I understand very well that many people are unable to review their beliefs and hold to them in a dispassionate manner, this is no ones fault but their own, and furthermore many of these “sensitive” beliefs are not only offensive to others but dangerous. People would do well to arrive at their convictions through a systematic and dispassionate process by which they reviewed specific claims and adhered to them only when they are sufficiently supportable and furthermore they should not become emotionally involved with the convictions to a point that, when the convictions are questioned or criticized, they then feel personally denigrated.
Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Howe: Amend the state constitution to
make English the official language.
Rep. Win Moses, D-Fort Wayne: "raising the Allen
County innkeeper’s tax for tourism"
Wow, Kruse! With your agenda, you will make criminals out of 80% of the people on the highway and give even more cash gifts to a company who is currently still protected by extra-heavy tax abatement in your county! Good stuff, DK. OR, here's an idea...why don't you just talk your Big Gubment buddy Mark Souder into using his magical pork-barreling pen and stapler to get the Fed to pay for a two lane expansion of U.S. 6 between I-69 and Butler? That should just about fix the problem, right?
"Banning talking on a cell phone without a hands-free device while
"expanding extra-heavy duty truck roads in northern Indiana to provide
a route to Michigan for Steel Dynamics Inc.
Sen. Tom Wyss, R-Fort Wayne wants to "Make the sexual assault
of a person who is asleep a crime"
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iran on Sunday vowed to push forward with efforts to enrich uranium after the U.N. Security Council imposed sanctions designed to stop the country's disputed nuclear efforts.
Iran's hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the Security Council would regret voting in favor of the sanctions, saying he was sorry the West lost its chance to make amends with Iran.
"I am sorry for you who lost the opportunity for friendship with the nation of Iran. You yourself know that you cannot damage the nation of Iran an iota," the state-run news agency, IRNA, quoted Ahmadinejad as saying. (Watch why Iran's next move could include kicking out U.N. nuclear inspectors )..........
Here's a thought, Let's forget about boots on the ground. Let's ask Santa to drop a little pre-emptive bag o' nuclear cheer on this freakshow before he gets a chance to do it to us.
Just a thought....
click on the headline above for the complete cnn article
Senator Harry Reid, who will be the majority leader in the next Congress, did not break Senate rules in accepting free ringside seats at boxing matches from the Nevada Athletic Commission, the Ethics Committee has concluded.
Enough is Enough. Muqtada Al-Sadr and his Mahdi army have drove sectarian violence since the beginning of the US invasion. This president and his counterpart in Iraq have been unwilling and/or unable to deal with Al-Sadr. EVERYONE must understand that until Al-Sadr is dead there will NEVER be peace in Iraq...
There are no easy solutions left in Iraq. At this point President Bush should inform that (sic) Al-Maliki that if he does not deal w/ the Al-Sadr situation then the US will have no other choice than to FULLY AND COMPLETELY withdraw our troops.
As President Bush weighs new policy options for Iraq, strong support has coalesced in the Pentagon behind a military plan to "double down" in the country with a substantial buildup in American troops, an increase in industrial aid and a major combat offensive against Muqtada Sadr, the radical Shiite leader impeding development of the Iraqi government.
Sunday, December 10, 2006; Page A01
Emphasis mine. Now, I'm no economic expert, but I do like to talk out my ass (especially when I know I am right). This is total bullshit. There is no one in America (except perhaps some big milk moguls) that shouldn't be totally fucked off about this. I know I am, and if you're not, kindly chime in and explain "why," just for kicks.
In the summer of 2003, shoppers in Southern California began getting a break on the price of milk.
A maverick dairyman named Hein Hettinga started bottling his own milk and selling it for as much as 20 cents a gallon less than the competition, exercising his right to work outside the rigid system that has controlled U.S. milk production for almost 70 years. Soon the effects were rippling through the state, helping to hold down retail prices at supermarkets and warehouse stores.That was when a coalition of giant milk companies and dairies, along with their congressional allies, decided to crush Hettinga's initiative. For three years, the milk lobby spent millions of dollars on lobbying and campaign contributions and made deals with lawmakers, including incoming Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid
Last March, Congress passed a law reshaping the Western milk market and essentially ending Hettinga's experiment -- all without a single congressional hearing.
"They wanted to make sure there would be no more Heins," said Mary Keough Ledman, a dairy economist who observed the battle.
Hettinga, who ran a big business and was no political innocent, fought back with his own lobbyists and alliances with lawmakers. But he found he was no match for the dairy lobby.
"I had an awakening," the 64-year-old Dutch-born dairyman said. "It's not totally free enterprise in the United States."
Most U.S. dairy farmers work within a government system set up in the 1930s to give thousands of small dairies a guaranteed market for their milk and to even out prices for consumers. Farmers who participate in regional pools operated by the federal government or the states deliver raw milk to cooperatives or food processors. They get a guaranteed price, whether the milk ends up in a gallon jug, cheese, butter or ice cream. In Arizona and other federally regulated regions, the Agriculture Department uses a formula to set the price processors pay for raw milk, issuing "milk marketing orders."
Developed for a bygone era of small dairies and decentralized milk plants, the system lives on when 3,000-cow dairies are not uncommon and huge cooperatives and food companies dominate the business.
Business groups, fiscal conservatives and some dairy organizations have called for Congress to overhaul the complex system of protections and subsidies, which they say is costly to taxpayers and consumers. A recent USDA study acknowledged that "dairy programs raise the retail price" of milk. The watchdog group Citizens Against Government Waste estimates that the programs cost U.S. consumers at least $1.5 billion a year.
The 1937 law allowed "producer-handlers" -- dairy farmers who bottle milk from only their own cows -- to operate outside the pools. But it was risky for a farm to do this because it might end up with more milk than it could sell. Most of these outsiders were small.
Hettinga started out as a hired hand in the Dutch American dairies of Southern California, where his family emigrated after World War II. He soon figured out he could buy cows with injured hooves, then fix and sell them at a profit that exceeded his weekly paycheck.
The country, in my judgment, is tired of pure political bickering that happens in Washington, and they understand that on this important issue of war and peace, it is best for our country to work together
However they put it, the Democrat approach in Iraq comes down to this: The terrorists win and America loses
White House hopeful Sen. Evan Bayh warned on Monday that Democrats could lose their newfound grip on Congress if the party pursues an ideological course.
Girl, 13, charged as sex offender and victim
By Pamela MansonThe Salt Lake Tribune
Article Last Updated:12/06/2006 01:12:35 AM MST
Salt Lake City - Utah
Supreme Court justices acknowledged Tuesday that they were
struggling to wrap their minds around the concept that a 13-year-old girl could
be both an offender and a victim for the same act - in this case, having
consensual sex with her 12-year-old boyfriend.
The Ogden, Utah, girl was put in this odd position because she was found guilty of violating a state law that prohibits sex with someone under age 14. She also was the victim in the case against her boyfriend, who was found guilty of the same violation by engaging in sexual activity with her.
"The only thing that comes close to this is dueling," said Associate Chief Justice Michael Wilkins, noting that two people who take 20 paces and then shoot could each be considered both victim and offender.
And Chief Justice Christine Durham wondered if the state Legislature had intended the "peculiar consequence" that a child would have the simultaneous status of a protected person and an alleged perpetrator under the law.
The comments came in oral arguments on a motion asking the high court
to overturn the finding of delinquency - the legal term in juvenile court for a
conviction - against Z.C., who became pregnant after she and her boyfriend
engaged in sex in October 2003.
State authorities filed delinquency petitions in July 2004, alleging that each had committed sexual abuse of a child, a second-degree felony if committed by an adult.
The girl appealed the petition, saying her constitutional right to be treated equally under the law had been violated.
Her motion noted that for juveniles who are 16 and 17, having sex with others in their own age group does not qualify as a crime.
Juveniles who are 14 or 15 and have sex with peers can be charged with
unlawful conduct with a minor, but the law provides for mitigation when the age
difference is less than four years, making the offense a misdemeanor.
For adolescents under 14, though, there are no exceptions or mitigation and they are never considered capable of consenting to sex.
A juvenile court judge denied the motion by Z.C., who then admitted to the offense while preserving her right to appeal to a higher court. The boy did not appeal.
The Utah Court of Appeals last December upheld the judge's refusal to dismiss the allegation, saying the law's "rigorous protections" for younger minors include protecting them for each other. Z.C. then appealed to the state Supreme Court.
At Tuesday's arguments, Matthew Bates, an assistant Utah attorney general, argued the prosecution of the girl was not unreasonable. He said the statute in
question is designed to prevent sex with children who are 13 and younger, even
if the other person is in the same age group.
By passing that law, legislators were sending a message, Bates said: Sex with or among children is unacceptable.
Randall Richards, the girl's attorney, argued that prosecuting
children under a law meant to protect them is illogical.
"A child (victim) cannot also be a perpetrator in the exact same act," Richards said.
The Utah Supreme Court will issue a ruling later.
Me: I would like to order a data only DSL.Please note, no mention of disconnecting the existing DSL was made (intentionally).
She: Ok, we'll send a technician out next week to get that hooked up (gets billing data etc.).