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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Florida
Home country: USA
Current location: USA
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 24,477

About Me

Small business owner, former professor and university administrator... former expat (lived in UAE for 10 years).

Journal Archives

Truncated Early Voting Will Give Newt the Edge in Florida

Voting this year only began this Saturday... right at the time Newt has his maximum momentum coming out of SC. Keep in mind that traditionally about 1/3 of voters will vote early in Florida.

Early voting in the Republican presidential primary is set to begin throughout Florida the same day South Carolina holds its primary.

Voters in all 67 Florida counties will be able to go to the polls Saturday and casts ballots... http://www.gainesville.com/article/20120120/WIRE/120129971/1034?Title=Early-voting-in-GOP-primary-to-begin-across-Fla-&tc=ar

Nigeria’s Boko Haram Kills at Least 165 People in Kano Bombings

At least 165 people were killed in the northern Nigerian city of Kano in bomb attacks by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram on government buildings.

The group claimed responsibility for the blasts that struck eight government buildings on Jan. 20, its spokesman, Abu Qaqa, said by phone. Authorities in Africa’s top oil producer blame Boko Haram, whose name means “Western education is a sin,” for bombings and attacks in the mainly Muslim north and the capital Abuja over the past year... http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-01-22/nigeria-s-boko-haram-kills-at-least-165-people-in-kano-bombings.html


Nigeria is spiraling out of control...

The closer Romney gets to the nomination, the more it looks the right-wing will bolt

and support a third party candidate...

It is really starting to smell like 1992.

Remember the nastiness (Pat Buchanan, et al.)

Perot pissed-off enough to throw his own money in.

Let's just hope Obama isn't playing George H.W. Bush.

Facebook and Google failure to win over India court sets the stage for a trial

Facebook, Google and other internet giants yesterday lost their efforts to avoid trial on charges of failing to screen material some Indians consider insulting to their leaders and major religious figures.

The ruling by Justice Suresh Kait of the Delhi High Court sets the stage for a major legal clash pitting the interests of Indians keen to enjoy unfettered use of the internet against the interests of those who feel the medium disseminates words and images that violate their cultural, political and religious sensitivities... The case against the internet firms was brought by journalist Vinay Rai, who says internet sites in India display content that mocks Hinduism, Islam and Christianity and could incite communal violence. He has been trying to pressure the government for over a year to take his claims seriously...

The internet is under attack from all sides these days.

Soros issues stark warning on euro crisis

George Soros, the billionaire investor and chairman of Soros Fund Management, says the euro-zone debt crisis is "more dangerous" than the global downturn of 2008.
Tomorrow's exclusives tonight:

His comments yesterday came as the leaders of the bloc's two biggest economies met to try to calm the turmoil now entering a third year. Mr Soros said the euro zone faced a period of "draconian austerity" as a result of cost-cutting measures.

"We have a more dangerous situation now than in 2008," Mr Soros was quoted as saying in Bangalore, India. "The crisis in Europe is more serious than the crash of 2008."

Any collapse of European banks would have global consequences, said Mr Soros... http://www.thenational.ae/business/banking/soros-issues-stark-warning-on-euro-crisis

Habshan-Fujairah oil pipeline 'will be ready within six months' (UAE)

An oil export pipeline from Habshan in Abu Dhabi to Fujairah that will bypass the strategic Strait of Hormuz will be ready by the middle of 2012, the UAE Minister for Energy Mohammad Bin Dha'en Al Hameli said yesterday... The commissioning of the pipeline will be a game changer in crude oil transportation as it will give Abu Dhabi direct access to the Indian Ocean for its oil exports and the option of bypassing the critical Strait of Hormuz. Abu Dhabi would get access to an open sea — that's the strategic advantage the new pipeline provides... http://gulfnews.com/business/oil-gas/habshan-fujairah-oil-pipeline-will-be-ready-within-six-months-1.963780

This is an important deadline to pay attention to vis a vis the Iran situation.

The Death of Intellectual Property

One of the things that's clear given the current progress of new technologies is that the 19th century notions of copyright, patent and intellectual property are fast becoming obsolete... de facto.

Recent legal approaches have tended to just defend the system as it was (de jure) and ignore the fact that there has been a significant paradigm shift.

Is intellectual property still a viable concept here in the 21st century? Do legal efforts like SOPA ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stop_Online_Piracy_Act ) actually help, or harm the whole process?

Here is just one current take on the current state of affairs:

..Irrespective of moral and economic dimensions, the deathblow to copyright will likely come from the Internet itself. Due to the nature of the Internet, and anonymizing technologies in particular, the practicality of attempting to enforce a pre-internet copyright regime through the Internet is a road that we as a society should not go down.

Canada has experience with laws that engender widespread violation: Consider prohibition in the 1920s. A law violated so brazenly is more than meaningless — it undermines the effectiveness of the legal system generally.

Over time, the Internet will increasingly expose constraints on text, pictures, and videos for what they are — arbitrary and outmoded. In the meantime, it makes sense for Canada not to pass copyright laws that are more restrictive and invasive... http://questioncopyright.org/the_case_for_the_death_of_copyright

I would also add to what the author says above and say that the lack of privacy on the net also adds to the practical death of intellectual property. Think about it for a moment... Who actually owns someone's Tweet? The author? The article (or tweet) they were responding too? Twitter itself?

So, the question is in this day and age... whither copyright? Patents?

Yemen 'could be another Somalia'

Yemen will need almost $500 million in aid to avert a humanitarian crisis on the scale of the starvation and drought that ravaged the Horn of Africa this year, aid agencies warned yesterday.

Representatives from United Nations agencies said about seven million people in Yemen are in need of food, of whom three million are already in dire need, and 60 per cent of the country's 12 million children were malnourished.

"While there have been significant political developments in Yemen, humanitarian needs are expected to deteriorate still further over the next 12 months," said Jens Toyberg-Frandzen, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen. He said the country's nutrition figures were comparable to those of Somalia... http://www.thenational.ae/featured-content/home/middle-headlines/yemen-could-be-another-somalia

Here is the list of Senators who voted against the Defense Authorization

and who are the only ones who apparently still believe in the Bill of Rights. It's a short, bi-partisan list:

Sen. Thomas Coburn (R, OK)
Sen. Thomas Harkin (D, IA)
Sen. Mike Lee (R, UT)
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D, OR)
Sen. Rand Paul (R, KY)
Sen. Bernard Sanders (I, VT)
Sen. Ron Wyden (D, OR)


Wounded Veterans of Iraq: the True Legacy of War

Thank God for the advancement of medicine. One of the clear results that can be seen from the Iraq war is that the trauma treatment received by the wounded far exceeds the capabilities of the past. While America mourns the 4,400+ dead soldiers from the Iraq war, it important to think about the 30,000 soldiers who were wounded during the conflict. The sad reality, however, hits home when you realize a large percentage of that 30,000 would have been the deceased of past wars. While the critical care the military gives has saved lives, many veterans are coming home in numbers far sicker and more debilitated than from previous wars.

Here is just one veteran's story:

Davis suffered wounds to his stomach, chest, shoulders and hips. Someone rolled him up in a blanket to staunch the bleeding.
Davis was taken to an air base where medics worked on him, then to a hospital in Germany where he had three surgeries. He was then flown to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, where he underwent more surgery and began a long battle for recovery, which he continues to fight today, five years later, in Gautier.
Davis, now 29, is classified as 90 percent disabled. He’s applied for jobs, but had no luck. He said he gets the strong feeling employers don’t want to hire him because of his disabilities. He’s trying to get his classification upped to 100 percent.
Davis still has physical problems -- pain, intestinal problems, a shoulder that doesn’t allow him to do much lifting.
But he said his biggest problem is the nightmares, lack of sleep and short-term memory loss for which doctors can’t seem to find the right medication. He’s dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. PTSD is a common malady among returning soldiers...

Read more: http://www.sunherald.com/2011/12/03/3611588/legacy-of-war-wounded-warriors.html#ixzz1ga9L45x7

And that's just the physical toll. The psychological toll among the million+ soldiers who served in Iraq has been reported to be nearly 30% by some estimates. http://usliberals.about.com/od/homelandsecurit1/a/IraqNumbers.htm

While America may be leaving Iraq. In this holiday season, we need to remember that the war is a gift that keeps on giving. The war isn't over. Just ask the veterans who are suffering the most.
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