Posts by untenured

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  • Angry Ukrainian Mob Throws Politician Into A Dumpster (great video at link)

    09/17/2014 6:37:57 AM PDT · 26 of 33
    untenured to doug from upland
    Doug, don't know if you saw this one from yesterday on the same theme:

    Passengers eject Pak politicians out of plane for causing delay

  • He Might Throw His Hat Into the Race — But Would He Run as a Democrat or a Republican?

    09/15/2014 6:45:29 AM PDT · 16 of 45
    untenured to taildragger

    One day I’d like a consumer/taxpayer to be elected president.


    09/13/2014 11:46:00 AM PDT · 13 of 17
    untenured to Stosh
    Also never having heard of her, I went to Wikipedia too. I was struck by the reason she went to war:

    "I wish some Indians would win high military distinction in this war. If one or two could do something in the Allied service which was very brave and which everybody admired it would help to make a bridge between the English people and the Indians."

    Remarkable background too - Indian Sufi father, American mother, born in prerevolutionary Moscow.

  • The rise of Scotland the terrible

    09/13/2014 8:23:24 AM PDT · 38 of 63
    untenured to aMorePerfectUnion
    If the vote does not pass this time, it will in 2016 when the world economy fails. This is simply an event in history whose time has come.

    Maybe not. As was hinted at upthread, in 1995 Canadians were kept up all night by a referendum in which Quebecers very narrowly rejected independence. That was the high-water mark for that movement. Canada would have lost Quebec, but Quebec would have lost Canada and whatever they get from it too. Quebecers seem to have looked at that prospect and walked away.

    With independence you get something, but you give up something as well.

    And a state created on nothing but ethnicity has only ethnicity to hold it together. People will have to make their own judgments from history about how that has worked out.


    09/10/2014 9:46:04 AM PDT · 11 of 46
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson
    After accumulating several years of material on which to base a comparison, I believe the Japanese wartime statements are more dishonest than the Germans'. The Germans' reporting has had its share of defeats being characterized as "shortening of lines," but the Japanese consistently appear to overstate U.S. plane and ship losses, as well as putting lipstick on broader battlefield pigs, in a way that the Germans don't. And when the Germans lose, sometimes it is straightforwardly characterized that way. I don't know if anyone else has a similar impression, which is surprising given the general importance attached to propaganda by the Nazi regime.

    The Times' reporting then was frequently more optimistic than the reality, which raises an opportunity for an interesting study of diachronic journalism.


    09/09/2014 12:52:06 PM PDT · 19 of 27
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson

    Oops...what if he had held on until inauguration?


    09/09/2014 12:37:59 PM PDT · 17 of 27
    untenured to henkster
    Two hypotheticals are interesting to think about.

    1. At this point, I wonder how much Stalin thought he could get? According to my understanding, once the fighting was over he was still setting his sights on Italy and maybe France behind Western lines, through the use of Western communists. Greece must have been in his sights now, and maybe much more territory too.

    2. Had Franklin "Uncle Joe" Roosevelt died in 9/44 instead of when he did, how would things have been different? What if he had served his full fourth term as a progressively sicker man, Wilson-style? Truman was a more early and eager Cold Warrior than FDR would've been, it seems.


    09/09/2014 9:53:42 AM PDT · 14 of 27
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson

    The tracks of the Iron Curtain appear to be in the process of being erected.

  • Why Did We Celebrate Labor Day?

    09/06/2014 9:29:21 AM PDT · 9 of 12
    untenured to Alberta's Child
    That would be OK, but I'm referring to cases where it's not the customer who needs to be protected as much as the general public.

    That's a reasonable position, but first, how often do you think that situation arises outside the context of building design, construction and maintenance?

    Second, architects who design self-destructing buildings or contractors who do self-destructing building work will not be doing that for long, and people who want to go into these trades know that. (In addition, just on grounds of basic decency alone, most although not all businessmen don't want to kill people.) If someone can make a lot of money on a few collapsible buildings or exploding gas lines and then disappear, this problem becomes serious, but I don't think that characterizes any market. Competition is a very powerful regulator of any market where it is free to operate, IMHO. But I am not in construction, so I certainly will defer to this point to people who are.

  • Why Did We Celebrate Labor Day?

    09/06/2014 7:58:04 AM PDT · 7 of 12
    untenured to Alberta's Child
    In some occupations that might be OK, but I don’t understand how that would work in occupations where there is a public interest in ensuring the competency of the people who are involved.

    Charles Murray suggested retaining the current licensing process, but making it merely an option for someone who wants to practice a trade. People who get licenses could say that to potential customers, and people who don't couldn't. That way we eliminate the cartel problem of licensing, while retaining its alleged quality-enhancing effects.

    It would be interesting to see how much customers value obtaining a license. Maybe a lot, maybe not so much.


    09/05/2014 9:50:28 AM PDT · 12 of 34
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson; henkster
    Ernie Pyle's last column from the Old Continent.

    IU Archives
    Pyle with Dwight D. Eisenhower and Omar N. Bradley.

    PARIS, September 5, 1944 – This is the last of these columns from Europe. By the time you read this, the old man will be on his way back to America. After that will come a long, long rest. And after the rest – well, you never can tell.

    Undoubtedly this seems to you to be a funny time for a fellow to be quitting the war. It is a funny time. But I’m not leaving because of a whim, or even especially because I’m homesick.

    I’m leaving for one reason only – because I have just got to stop. "I’ve had it," as they say in the Army. I have had all I can take for a while.

    I’ve been twenty-nine months overseas since this war started; have written around seven hundred thousand words about it; have totaled nearly a year in the front lines.

    I do hate terribly to leave right now, but I have given out. I’ve been immersed in it too long. My spirit is wobbly and my mind is confused. The hurt has finally become too great.

    All of a sudden it seemed to me that if I heard one more shot or saw one more dead man, I would go off my nut. And if I had to write one more column I’d collapse. So I’m on my way.

    It may be that a few months of peace will restore some vim to my spirit, and I can go war-horsing off to the Pacific. We’ll see what a little New Mexico sunshine does along that line.


    Even after two and a half years of war writing there still is a lot I would like to tell. I wish right now that I could tell you about our gigantic and staggering supply system that keeps these great armies moving.

    I’m sorry I haven’t been able to get around to many branches of service that so often are neglected. I would like to have written about the Transportation Corps and the airport engineers and the wirestringers and the chemical mortars and the port battalions. To all of those that I have missed, my apologies. But the Army over here is just too big to cover it all.


    I know the first question everyone will ask when I get home is "When will the war be over?"

    So I’ll answer even before you ask me, and the answer is: "I don’t know."

    We all hope and most of us think it won’t be too long now. And yet there’s a possibility of it going on and on, even after we are deep in Germany. The Germans are desperate and their leaders have nothing to quit for.

    Every day the war continues is another hideous black mark against the German nation. They are beaten and yet they haven’t quit. Every life lost from here on is a life lost to no purpose.

    If Germany does deliberately drag this war on and on she will so infuriate the world by her inhuman bullheadedness that she is apt to be committing national suicide.

    In our other campaigns we felt we were fighting, on the whole, a pretty good people. But we don’t feel that way now. A change has occurred. On the western front the Germans have shown their real cruelty of mind. We didn’t used to hate them, but we do now.

    The outstanding figure on this western front is Lt. Gen. Omar Nelson Bradley. He is so modest and sincere that he probably will not get his proper credit, except in military textbooks.

    But he has proved himself a great general in every sense of the word. And as a human being, he is just as great. Having him in command has been a blessed good fortune for America.


    I cannot help but feel bad about leaving. Even hating the whole business as much as I do, you come to be a part of it. And you leave some of yourself here when you depart. Being with the American soldier has been a rich experience.

    To the thousands of them whom I know personally and the other hundreds of thousands for whom I have had the humble privilege of being a sort of mouthpiece, this then is to say goodbye – and good luck.

    Ernie Pyle
    Source: Ernie's War: The Best of Ernie Pyle's World War II Dispatches, edited by David Nichols, pp. 357-59. Pictures courtesy of The Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana
  • Born Into Bad Luck (The Sad Fate of Japan's Fire Horse Women)

    09/04/2014 7:38:38 PM PDT · 22 of 30
    untenured to Ditter

    I can’t explain that. Was the husband’s English good?

  • Born Into Bad Luck (The Sad Fate of Japan's Fire Horse Women)

    09/04/2014 6:50:52 PM PDT · 20 of 30
    untenured to Ditter

    I was rding the bullet train in Japan, where the space between seat rows is (unlike on planes today) more than ample. A woman turned around and asked permission before she reclined her seat back. My brother, visiting us there, was stunned. Japanese are frequently extremely polite. (I also found out today that research indicates they only interrupt 1/7 as often as Americans.)

  • Italian Eatery Under Fire Over Nazi-Themed Dish ('Long Live the Nazis' Spaghetti)

    08/31/2014 5:09:48 PM PDT · 13 of 21
    untenured to cloudmountain
    I know Chinese, and the first two characters are the standard term for Nazi, although it is true that the characters are just transliteration (Na Tsuei). The whole thing translates directly as "Nazi 10,000-year noodles."

    Many people in that part of the world have little understanding of the Hitler years and how most westerners (including Russians) see them.

  • Possible Cure for Type 1 Diabetes Announced

    08/31/2014 5:01:05 PM PDT · 29 of 35
    untenured to Flag_This
    I hear you. I've had it since 1980, and long ago decided I would have to say no to embryonic cell-based treatment.

    Having said that, they've been talking about encapsulation for twenty years, so it would take more than this to get me excited anyway.


    08/31/2014 11:09:22 AM PDT · 19 of 26
    untenured to Seizethecarp

    I noticed that story too. What was noteworthy to me was, first, that so many Romanians were willing to help and keep quiet about it after years of alliance with Hitler, and, second, that it was already known that the Soviets couldn’t be allowed to find out about the airmen.

  • Japan: Gangster, arson-murderer hanged

    08/29/2014 6:59:33 AM PDT · 12 of 19
    untenured to headstamp 2
    Didn’t know Japan still did executions.

    They do indeed. They seldom need to, because the crime rate is astonishingly low. (Perhaps the two are related.)

    Taiwan executes as well, but perhaps not for long. There was a case there a few years ago in which a man was executed for raping and murdering a small girl, and it's now universally acknowledged he didn't do it. (The president apologized to his family.)

  • Bacon Wars: Why Did the Sneakers Bistro Incident Go Viral?

    08/29/2014 6:35:34 AM PDT · 3 of 34
    untenured to raccoonradio
    "She's hurting," said Decarreau, who has been in touch with the woman. "She didn't realize this is what would happen. If there's a lesson, it's that [online forums] are not the way to deliver a message to an individual or agency. You need to reach out directly to people."

    The lesson I would've drawn is that perhaps some messages, especially those involving How Offended I AM, shouldn't be delivered on any medium.


    08/28/2014 6:58:14 AM PDT · 10 of 24
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson; henkster
    Pretty quick turnaround for Ernie Pyle's 8/28 piece on the liberation of Paris:

    IU Archives
    U.S. troops enter Paris, 1944.

    PARIS, August 28, 1944 – I had thought that for me there could never again be any elation in war. But I had reckoned without the liberation of Paris – I had reckoned without remembering that I might be a part of this richly historic day.

    We are in Paris – on the first day – one of the great days of all time. This is being written, as other correspondents are writing their pieces, under an emotional tension, a pent-up semi-delirium.

    Our approach to Paris was hectic. We had waited for three days in a nearby town while hourly our reports on what was going on in Paris changed and contradicted themselves. Of a morning it would look as though we were about to break through the German ring around Paris and come to the aid of the brave French Forces of the Interior who were holding parts of the city. By afternoon it would seem the enemy had reinforced until another Stalingrad was developing. We could not bear to think of the destruction of Paris, and yet at times it seemed desperately inevitable.

    That was the situation this morning when we left Rambouillet and decided to feel our way timidly toward the very outskirts of Paris. And then, when we were within about eight miles, rumors began to circulate that the French 2nd Armored Division was in the city. We argued for half an hour at a crossroads with a French captain who was holding us up, and finally he freed us and waved us on.

    For fifteen minutes we drove through a flat gardenlike country under a magnificent bright sun and amidst greenery, with distant banks of smoke pillaring the horizon ahead and to our left. And then we came gradually into the suburbs, and soon into Paris itself and a pandemonium of surely the greatest mass joy that has ever happened.


    The streets were lined as by Fourth of July parade crowds at home, only this crowd was almost hysterical. The streets of Paris are very wide, and they were packed on each side. The women were all brightly dressed in white or red blouses and colorful peasant skirts, with flowers in their hair and big flashy earrings. Everybody was throwing flowers, and even serpentine.

    As our jeep eased through the crowds, thousands of people crowded up, leaving only a narrow corridor, and frantic men, women and children grabbed us and kissed us and shook our hands and beat on our shoulders and slapped our backs and shouted their joy as we passed.

    I was in a jeep with Henry Gorrell of the United Press, Capt. Carl Pergler of Washington, D.C., and Corp. Alexander Belon of Amherst, Massachusetts. We all got kissed until we were literally red in face, and I must say we enjoyed it.

    Once when the jeep was simply swamped in human traffic and had to stop, we were swarmed over and hugged and kissed and torn at. Everybody, even beautiful girls, insisted on kissing you on both cheeks. Somehow I got started kissing babies that were held up by their parents, and for a while I looked like a baby-kissing politician going down the street. The fact that I hadn’t shaved for days, and was gray-bearded as well as bald-headed, made no difference. Once when we came to a stop, some Frenchman told us there were still snipers shooting, so we put our steel helmets back on.

    The people certainly looked well fed and well dressed. The streets were lined with green trees and modern buildings. All the stores were closed in holiday. Bicycles were so thick I have an idea there have been plenty of accidents today, with tanks and jeeps overrunning the populace.

    We entered Paris via Rue Aristide Briand and Rue d’Orléans. We were slightly apprehensive, but decided it was all right to keep going as long as there were crowds. But finally we were stymied by the people in the streets, and then above the din we heard some not-too-distant explosions – the Germans trying to destroy bridges across the Seine. And then the rattling of machine guns up the street, and that old battlefield whine of high-velocity shells just overhead. Some of us veterans ducked, but the Parisians just laughed and continued to carry on.

    There came running over to our jeep a tall, thin, happy woman in a light brown dress, who spoke perfect American.

    She was Mrs. Helen Cardon, who lived in Paris for twenty-one years and has not been home to America since 1935. Her husband is an officer in French Army headquarters and home now after two and a half years as a German prisoner. He was with her, in civilian clothes.

    Mrs. Cardon has a sister, Mrs. George Swikart, of New York, and I can say here to her relatives in America that she is well and happy. Incidentally, her two children, Edgar and Peter, are the only two American children, she says, who have been in Paris throughout the entire war.


    We entered Paris from due south and the Germans were still battling in the heart of the city along the Seine when we arrived, but they were doomed. There was a full French armored division in the city, plus American troops entering constantly.

    The farthest we got in our first hour in Paris was near the Senate building, where some Germans were holed up and firing desperately. So we took a hotel room nearby and decided to write while the others fought. By the time you read this I’m sure Paris will once again be free for Frenchmen, and I’ll be out all over town getting my bald head kissed. Of all the days of national joy I’ve ever witnessed this is the biggest.

    Ernie Pyle
  • L.A. Mayor Garcetti Expected To Announce Plan For $13.25 Minimum Wage

    08/27/2014 6:32:00 PM PDT · 8 of 38
    untenured to PistolPaknMama

    Because the people who stay in those hotels don’t vote in LA and are often less sensitive to price increases.

  • Dem Senator Calls For Boycott Of Burger King, Tells Consumers To Eat At Wendy’s

    08/27/2014 6:56:17 AM PDT · 66 of 66
    untenured to upchuck

    Anyone who eats where a U.S. Senator tells him to deserves whatever happens to him.

  • The Islamic State and the land of lost gods

    08/25/2014 1:16:53 PM PDT · 7 of 11
    untenured to Jaded

    I recommend “In the Shadow of the Sword.” It is long and detailed, like many of Mr. Holland’s books, but the writing is lively and there are many informative things in it about the syncretic origins of Islam — things that couldn’t possibly be said in Muslim-majority lands, and soon will be unsayable in the West as well. He was to be on a BBC panel discussion soon after the book came out, but the usual cries of offense were manufactured to keep him off.

  • What Would Aliens Actually Look Like? We Asked 7 Experts

    08/15/2014 5:57:20 PM PDT · 33 of 73
    untenured to EveningStar

    Just as an aside, how can someone be an “expert” on aliens?

  • Starving the Soul on Campus When Computer Science Replaces the Classics

    08/15/2014 3:35:13 PM PDT · 11 of 29
    untenured to SeeSharp
    There is nothing dismal about economics, unless you count the way economic concepts are twisted to promote government policies.

    Thank you. Economics, taught properly, is as good for the soul as anything on the liberal-arts side of the quad.

    As a college professor I can tell you that in my economics-principles classes (a) 80% of the students are eager to learn, beyond just things that seem more directly vocational; the stereotype of the mindless time-punchers who just want to be entertained or stare at their phones is misplaced; but (b) about 30% of them simply cannot write a proper paragraph, and so simply do not belong in college. Remedial work is largely useless. As wonderful as the classics are in the hands of a good teacher, these students are nonetheless simply in the wrong place.

  • Who rules America? [Great, but unsurprising, read]

    08/13/2014 9:49:20 AM PDT · 16 of 33
    untenured to upchuck
    The analysts found that when controlling for the power of economic elites and organized interest groups, the influence of ordinary Americans registers at a "non-significant, near-zero level.

    Fallacy of construction. All Americans are members of multiple "organized interest groups." There is no such thing as "ordinary Americans" in opposition to "economic elites." Everyone plays the game, including such nominally wholesome groups as farmers and "working people."

    Does anyone seriously want to deny that environmentalists and government workers, to take two examples, are people who are not the "economic elites" the authors have in mind yet significantly influence government policy?

    The professors' homework is to read Federalist 10.


    08/12/2014 6:40:31 PM PDT · 33 of 50
    untenured to RedMDer
    Paris: A letter is sent by the French national railway, S.N.C.F. (Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Français), demanding payment of 200,000 Francs from the regional government of Haute-Garonne in southern France for transporting Jewish detainees from concentration camps to the border with Germany. The letter warns that interest will be charged if the payment is not made on time. (Peter Kilduff)



    08/11/2014 7:33:48 AM PDT · 11 of 34
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson; henkster
    An Ernie Pyle column is published today, under the title "A Slow Cautious Business."

    IU Archives
    Pyle shares cigarettes.

    ON THE WESTERN FRONT, August 11, 1944 – I know that all of us correspondents have tried time and again to describe to you what this weird hedgerow fighting in northwestern France has been like.

    But I’m going to go over it once more, for we’ve been in it two months and some of us feel that this is the two months that broke the German Army in the west.

    This type of fighting is always in small groups, so let’s take as an example one company of men. Let’s say they are working forward on both sides of a country lane, and this company is responsible for clearing the two fields on either side of the road as it advances.

    That means you have only about one platoon to a field. And with the company’s understrength from casualties, you might have no more than twenty-five or thirty men in a field.

    Over here the fields are usually not more than fifty yards across and a couple of hundred yards long. They may have grain in them, or apple trees, but mostly they are just pastures of green grass, full of beautiful cows.

    The fields are surrounded on all sides by immense hedgerows which consist of an ancient earthen bank, waist-high, all matted with roots, and out of which grow weeds, bushes, and trees up to twenty feet high.

    The Germans have used these barriers well. They put snipers in the trees. They dig deep trenches behind the hedgerows and cover them with timber, so that it is almost impossible for artillery to get at them.

    Sometimes they will prop up machine guns with strings attached, so they can fire over the hedge without getting out of their holes. They even cut out a section of the hedgerow and hide a big gun or a tank in it, covering it with brush.

    Also they tunnel under the hedgerows from the back and make the opening on the forward side just large enough to stick a machine gun through.

    But mostly the hedgerow pattern is this: a heavy machine gun hidden at each end of the field and infantrymen hidden all along the hedgerow with rifles and machine pistols.


    Now it’s up to us to dig them out of there. It’s a slow and cautious business, and there is nothing very dashing about it. Our men don’t go across the open fields in dramatic charges such as you see in the movies. They did at first, but they learned better.

    They go in tiny groups, a squad or less, moving yards apart and sticking close to the hedgerows on either side of the field. They creep a few yards, squat, wait, then creep again.

    If you could be right up there between the Germans and the Americans you wouldn’t see very many men at any one time – just a few here and there, always trying to keep hidden. But you would hear an awful lot of noise.

    Our men were taught in training not to fire until they saw something to fire at. But that hasn’t worked in this country, because you see so little. So the alternative is to keep shooting constantly at the hedgerows. That pins the Germans in their holes while we sneak up on them.

    The attacking squads sneak up the sides of the hedgerows while the rest of the platoon stay back in their own hedgerow and keep the forward hedge saturated with bullets. They shoot rifle grenades too, and a mortar squad a little farther back keeps lobbing mortar shells over onto the Germans.

    The little advance groups get up to the far ends of the hedgerows at the corners of the field. They first try to knock out the machine guns at each corner. They do this with hand grenades, rifle grenades and machine guns.


    Usually, when the pressure gets on, the German defenders of the hedgerow start pulling back. They’ll take their heavier guns and most of the men back a couple of fields and start digging in for a new line.

    They leave about two machine guns and a few riflemen scattered through the hedge, to do a lot of shooting and hold up the Americans as long as they can.

    Our men now sneak along the front side of the hedgerow, throwing grenades over onto the other side and spraying the hedges with their guns. The fighting is very close – only a few yards apart – but it is seldom actual hand-to-hand stuff.

    Sometimes the remaining Germans come out of their holes with their hands up. Sometimes they try to run for it and are mowed down. Sometimes they won’t come out at all, and a hand grenade, thrown into their hole, finishes them off.

    And so we’ve taken another hedgerow and are ready to start on the one beyond.

    This hedgerow business is a series of little skirmishes like that clear across the front, thousands and thousands of little skirmishes. No single one of them is very big. But add them all up over the days and weeks and you’ve got a man-sized war, with thousands on both sides being killed.

    Ernie Pyle
  • Dropping Atomic Bombs on Japan Was Imperative

    08/09/2014 7:11:59 PM PDT · 6 of 22
    untenured to gaijin

    I second that recommendation. IIRC the book was written by a panel of Japanese who actually interviewed everyone who was still alive who knew what happened after Japan rejected the Potsdam demands. It is riveting and authoritative on what it took to get Japan to surrender, especially in the final days.

  • Paging Doctor Carson: The rise of Ben Carson and the GOP’s fractured flock of 2016

    08/09/2014 5:01:20 PM PDT · 19 of 33
    untenured to JohnBrowdie

    Indeed. We generally get the politicians we deserve.


    08/07/2014 2:33:35 PM PDT · 50 of 56
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson
    In the Hopkins telegram, we appear to have that rarest of things, an on-the-record linguistic singularity. "Abyssiniate" is found nowhere online except in this wire. A 2008 doctoral dissertation from the University of Nebraska has this to say about the malapropism/coinage:

    The Allied invasion of southern France was finally approved on 2 July. Not knowing whether he would get the landing craft necessary for placing his forces ashore, Lieutenant General Alexander M. Patch began final planning and rehearsals for what was called ANVIL and he was given the go ahead to land between Toulon and Nice on 15 August. But Churchill, who had never favored an invasion of southern France and sought to use those forces for further landings in Italy or in the Balkans continued to argue against it. He failed to convince Ike to call off the southern invasion, and Eisenhower told him that if it was a political issue, he would have to appeal to directly to Roosevelt. He did so in a message to the President’s close aid Harry Hopkins only a week before the invasion was to begin. Opening up with compliments regarding American forces and their quick movement into Brittany as well as east into central France, the Prime Minister complained that, “I’m grieved to find that not even splendid victories and widening opportunities do not bring us together on strategy.” He went on for another five pages on the reasons for canceling or diverting what had now been renamed DRAGOON. Hopkins would have none of it and answering for the President who was at his Hyde Park home at the time, he replied to Churchill that it was far too late to shift things now, and that the way north “will be much more rapid than you anticipate. They have nothing to stop us.” He went on to add, “The French will rise and abyssiniate [sic] large numbers of Germans, including, I trust, Monsieur Laval.” While the word abyssiniate is not in the dictionary, Hopkins apparently meant to imply that the Wehrmacht would suffer the same fate as Italian Dictator Mussolini’s stalwart troops had in the Horn of Africa the year before.

    I would wager it's still not in the dictionary.

  • Vanity: Need Ideas for English Paper

    08/06/2014 12:42:35 PM PDT · 144 of 168
    untenured to beaversmom

    Sorry, with any luck that will teach me to read the thread before posting. But probably not. :( The topic you chose was an interesting one though.

  • Vanity: Need Ideas for English Paper

    08/06/2014 12:28:11 PM PDT · 142 of 168
    untenured to beaversmom
    Some ideas, phrased as questions:

    1. Can a society without individual morals/self-discipline remain a free society?

    2. Has the expansion of government made self-government impossible?

    3. Is the Constitution still relevant for our times?

    4. Is today's immigration like the immigration of yore?

  • Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to evict ashes of Alan Freed, DJ who gave birth to rock 'n' roll...

    08/05/2014 1:48:55 PM PDT · 27 of 31
    untenured to a fool in paradise

    Interesting. On this particular excerpt Freed calls himself “Alan Freed, the king of the moondoggers.” The song is from the late 70s, and that excerpt is preserved on the version I downloaded from iTunes a few years ago.

  • Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to evict ashes of Alan Freed, DJ who gave birth to rock 'n' roll...

    08/05/2014 1:25:26 PM PDT · 24 of 31
    untenured to Political Junkie Too

    Ian Hunter’s “Cleveland Rocks” has at the beginning a brief excerpt from a broadcast of “The Moondog Show.”

  • Haircut 100 - Love Plus One

    08/03/2014 4:25:18 PM PDT · 13 of 14
    untenured to MD Expat in PA

    Thanks, I stand corrected. According to Wikipedia, Gary Numan also had some other commercial success.

  • Haircut 100 - Love Plus One

    08/03/2014 1:40:07 PM PDT · 7 of 14
    untenured to SamAdams76
    With the video age upon us, you had many "one hit wonders" who only made it because they had snazzy videos to go with their one or two good songs.

    Thomas Dolby ("Blinded by Science") and Gary Numan ("Cars") anyone?

    Peter Gabriel always seemed to have the best videos though.


    08/02/2014 7:35:30 PM PDT · 59 of 60
    untenured to Tax-chick
    Maybe your daughter's friends would impress you more in more difficult circumstances.

    Thank you for pointing that out.


    08/01/2014 7:53:31 PM PDT · 53 of 60
    untenured to Tax-chick
    I don't know about that assessment. My 13-yo daughter has friends who, facing considerably less danger, seem to be considerably less impressive than the 14-yo Anne Frank. Anytime you point the critical lens at yourself it bespeaks a certain wisdom. Because of all the waste of what ultimately never was, I can understand why the diary is such a popular school assignment.

    BTW, today is also the 100th anniversary of the German declaration of war on Russia, which began the 31-year death of the European era in world history. The coroners of history ruled it a suicide.


    07/31/2014 6:03:12 PM PDT · 58 of 65
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson
    The Gestapo man directly responsible is Alois Brunner. He is the commander of the Drancy transit camp, north of Paris.

    According to many accounts, Brunner made it to Syria, where as a Nazi he was welcomed by Syrian authorities. Mossad managed to get letter bombs to him that took out an eye and multiple fingers, but he was thought to still be alive in the early part of the last decade. He was unrepentant, indeed proud to the last about the genocide of the Jews.

  • Fla. mom arrested for allowing 7-year-old son to walk to park alone

    07/30/2014 7:01:44 AM PDT · 46 of 78
    untenured to Darksheare
    Flipside, these days you don’t know if some creeper is in that park hunting your kids.

    The creepers were there back then in about the same quantity as now. Only now have we been trained by the social-hypochondriac state and media to suppose that they're everywhere, and Action Must Be Taken. A people in constant fear are a people easily controlled.


    07/26/2014 3:30:54 PM PDT · 32 of 40
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson; henkster
    I'm on vacation, so a little slow. This is an Ernie Pyle column from 7/25/1944.


    From time to time Pyle turned his attention from the infantry to the units that helped supply or support the infantry.

    In Praise of Ordnance

    IU Archives
    Pyle and Marine PFC Urban Vachon

    IN NORMANDY, July 25, 1944 – One of the things the layman doesn’t hear much about is the Ordnance Department. In fact it is one of the branches that even the average soldier is little aware of except in a vague way.

    And yet the war couldn’t keep going without it. For ordnance repairs all the vehicles of an army and furnishes all the ammunition for its guns.

    Today there are more vehicles in the American sector of our beachhead than in the average-sized American city. And our big guns on an average heavy day are shooting up more than ten million dollars worth of ammunition. So you see ordnance has a man-sized job.

    Ordnance personnel is usually about six or seven percent of the total men of an army. That means we have many thousands of ordnancemen in Normandy. Their insignia is a flame coming out of a retort – nicknamed in the Army "the flaming onion."

    Ordnance operates the ammunition dumps we have scattered about the beachhead. But much bigger than its ammunition mission is ordnance’s job of repair. Ordnance has two hundred seventy-five thousand items in its catalog of parts, and the mere catalog itself covers a twenty-foot shelf.

    In a central headquarters here on the beachhead a modern filing system housed in big tents keeps records on the number and condition of five hundred major items in actual use on the beachhead, from tanks to pistols.

    We have scores and scores of separate ordnance companies at work on the beachhead – each of them a complete firm within itself, able to repair anything the Army uses.

    Ordnance can lift a thirty-ton tank as easily as it can a bicycle. It can repair a blown-up jeep or the intricate breech of a mammoth gun.


    Some of its highly specialized repair companies are made up largely of men who were craftsmen in the same line in civil life. In these companies you will find the average age is much above the army average. You will find craftsmen in their late forties, you’ll find men with their own established businesses who were making thirty to forty thousand dollars a year back home and who are now wearing sergeant’s stripes. You’ll find great soberness and sincerity, plus the normal satisfaction that comes from making things whole again instead of destroying them.

    You will find an IQ far above the average for the Army. It has to be that way or the work would not get done.

    You’ll find mechanical work being done under a tree that would be housed in a fifty-thousand-dollar shop back in America. You’ll find men working sixteen hours a day, then sleeping on the ground, who because of their age don’t even have to be here at all.

    Ordnance is one of the undramatic branches of the Army. They are the mechanics and the craftsmen, the fixers and the suppliers. But their job is vital. Ordinarily they are not in a great deal of danger. There are times on newly won and congested beachheads when their casualty rate is high, but once the war settles down and there is room for movement and dispersal it is not necessary or desirable for them to do their basic work within gun range.

    Our ordnance branch in Normandy has had casualties. It has two small branches which will continue to have casualties – its bomb-disposal squads and its retriever companies that go up to pull out crippled tanks under fire.

    But outside of those two sections, if your son or husband is in ordnance in France you can feel fairly easy about his returning to you. I don’t say that to belittle ordnance in any way, but to ease your worries if you have someone in this branch of the service overseas.


    Ordnance is set up in a vast structure of organization the same as any other Army command. The farther back you go the bigger become the outfits and the more elaborately equipped and more capable of doing heavy, long-term work.

    Every infantry or armored division has an ordnance company with it all the time. This company does quick repair jobs. What it hasn’t time or facilities for doing it hands on back to the next echelon in the rear.

    The division ordnance companies hit the beach on D-day. The next echelon back began coming on D-day plus four. The great heavy outfits arrived somewhat later.

    Today the wreckage of seven weeks of war is all in hand, and in one great depot after another it is being worked on – repaired or rebuilt or sent back for salvage until everything possible is made available again to our men who do the fighting. In later columns I’ll take you along to some of these repair companies that do the vital work.

    Ernie Pyle
    Source: Ernie's War: The Best of Ernie Pyle's World War II Dispatches, edited by David Nichols, pp. 314-16. Pictures courtesy of The Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana
  • Susan Sarandon reveals 1980s romance with David Bowie

    07/26/2014 6:37:48 AM PDT · 52 of 55
    untenured to SamAdams76
    If it makes you feel better I have "Candy O," "Let's Go" and "The Dangerous Type" on my phone.

    Speaking of going downhill, that album was the high-water mark for The Cars. But Bowie came back strong with "Let's Dance," an album that among other things introduced Stevie Ray Vaughan to the world beyond Austin. Bowie also did alright hot-wife-wise.


    07/25/2014 7:41:15 PM PDT · 28 of 40
    untenured to Tax-chick
    I’ve just started a book by Chaim Potok, “Old Men at Midnight.” One of the first characters introduced is a teenaged boy who is the sole survivor of the Jewish community of over 4,000 people, from a village near Crakow.

    In 1991 I traveled to Oświęcim, Poland, or as it was known in German, Auschwitz. I was traveling through Europe and on the way there had hooked up with a very generous Jewish couple from Florida, and benefited from their hired translator. There I met the town's only remaining Jew, a man who lived in what used to be the synagogue and remembered the war, but was crazy at that point. It was a haunting experience I will never forget.

  • Doctors: Government-Run Health Care Driving Us Out of Business

    07/25/2014 5:50:51 AM PDT · 12 of 18
    untenured to BilLies
    I would guess the real question is not the percentage of independent doctors, but the number of total doctors, before and after.

    Not entirely. Once herded into big organizations like hospitals, medical professionals are easier to regulate and control, and less likely to introduce disruptive commercial innovations that threaten government's powers over health care, and hence over a once-free people.

  • What Is a Progressive

    07/14/2014 6:09:23 AM PDT · 3 of 29
    untenured to don-o

    A progressive is someone who thinks he can solve social problems better than society can.


    07/13/2014 8:12:51 PM PDT · 16 of 19
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson; henkster
    Ernie Pyle sees combat himself.

    The quiet heroism of the troops getting ready for battle impressed Pyle.

    Anticipation is the Worst

    IU Archives
    Pyle with Bob Hope during World War II.

    IN NORMANDY, July 13, 1944 – Lt. Orion Shockley came over with a map and explained to us just what his company was going to do.

    There was a German strong point of pillboxes and machine-gun nests about half a mile down the street ahead of us.

    Our troops had made wedges into the city on both sides of us, but nobody had yet been up this street where we were going. The street, they thought, was almost certainly under rifle fire.

    "This is how we’ll do it," the lieutenant said. "A rifle platoon goes first. Right behind them will go part of a heavy-weapons platoon, with machine guns to cover the first platoon.

    "Then comes another rifle platoon. Then a small section with mortars, in case they run into something pretty heavy. Then another rifle platoon. And bringing up the rear, the rest of the heavy-weapons outfit to protect us from behind.

    "We don’t know what we’ll run into, and I don’t want to stick you right out in front, so why don’t you come along with me? We’ll go in the middle of the company."

    I said, "Okay." By this time I wasn’t scared. You seldom are once you’re into something. Anticipation is the worst. Fortunately this little foray came up so suddenly there wasn’t time for much anticipation.


    The rain kept on coming down, and you could sense that it had set in for the afternoon. None of us had raincoats, and by evening there wasn’t a dry thread on any of us. I could go back to a tent for the night but the soldiers would have to sleep the way they were.


    We were just ready to start when all of a sudden bullets came whipping savagely right above our heads.

    "It’s those damn twenty-millimeters again," the lieutenant said. "Better hold it up a minute."

    The soldiers all crouched lower behind the wall. The vicious little shells whanged into a grassy hillside just beyond us. A French suburban farmer was hitching up his horses in a barnyard on the hillside. He ran into the house. Shells struck all around it.

    Two dead Germans and a dead American still lay in his driveway. We could see them when we moved up a few feet.

    The shells stopped, and finally the order to start was given. As we left the protection of the high wall we had to cross a little culvert right out in the open and then make a turn in the road.

    The men went forward one at a time. They crouched and ran, apelike, across this dangerous space. Then, beyond the culvert, they filtered to either side of the road, stopping and squatting down every now and then to wait a few moments.

    The lieutenant kept yelling at them as they started: "Spread it out now. Do you want to draw fire on yourselves? Don’t bunch up like that. Keep five yards apart. Spread it out, dammit."

    There is an almost irresistible pull to get close to somebody when you are in danger. In spite of themselves, the men would run up close to the fellow ahead for company.

    The other lieutenant now called out: "Now you on the right watch the left side of the street for snipers, and you on the left watch the right side. Cover each other that way."

    And a first sergeant said to a passing soldier: "Get that grenade out of its case. It won’t do you no good in the case. Throw the case away. That’s right."


    Some of the men carried grenades already fixed in the ends of their rifles. All of them had hand grenades. Some had big Browning automatic rifles. One carried a bazooka. Interspersed in the thin line of men every now and then was a medic, with his bags of bandages and a Red Cross arm band on the left arm. The men didn’t talk any. They just went.

    They weren’t heroic figures as they moved forward one at a time, a few seconds apart. You think of attackers as being savage and bold. These men were hesitant and cautious. They were really the hunters, but they looked like the hunted. There was a confused excitement and a grim anxiety on their faces.

    They seemed terribly pathetic to me. They weren’t warriors. They were American boys who by mere chance of fate had wound up with guns in their hands sneaking up a death-laden street in a strange and shattered city in a faraway country in a driving rain. They were afraid, but it was beyond their power to quit. They had no choice.

    They were good boys. I talked with them all afternoon as we sneaked slowly forward along the mysterious and rubbled street, and I know they were good boys.

    And even though they aren’t warriors born to the kill, they win their battles. That’s the point.

    Ernie Pyle

    07/07/2014 1:02:41 PM PDT · 21 of 26
    untenured to Homer_J_Simpson

    In the story about “Ghost Arms” there are vague shades of Lt. Minderbender, whom we will get to know a little better a few years after the war.

  • Why dads don’t belong in the delivery room, and other lessons of childbirth learned by a father

    07/04/2014 9:29:02 PM PDT · 14 of 91
    untenured to waxer1
    Fathers should not be forced or otherwise in the delivery room. I never allowed my husband anywhere near the delivery room. I felt this was a private moment between me and my babies.

    I find that a remarkable sentiment. (I am a father of two.). My wife wanted me there, and had she not there would have been trouble between us, the babies being our blessing and our responsibility jointly. My life would be much poorer had I not been there.

  • Despite Academia's Best Efforts, Reagan Tops in Poll of Modern Presidents

    07/03/2014 5:59:14 PM PDT · 5 of 20
    untenured to Kaslin

    I often wonder if the 1980 Reagan could be elected in today’s America.

  • Liberals: "Today the Supreme Court of the United States Just Raped Every American Woman"

    06/30/2014 7:55:06 PM PDT · 18 of 70
    untenured to Politicalkiddo

    Exactly, the ignorant throwing around of “rape” betrays their ignorance, in more ways than one. They’re all men, BTW.