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Member since: Thu Sep 25, 2008, 03:38 PM
Number of posts: 3,169

Journal Archives

The White House Guide to Negotiations with Senator McConnell and Speaker Boehner

An Introduction to Caving...

Caving Safety

Caving is a potentially dangerous sport, but it can be made as safe as you want it to be. Unavoidable accidents are extremely rare; people make mistakes and they, or others, can get hurt because of those mistakes. There are many things which can cause an accident; you are expected to know about them and have sufficient foresight and use enough caution to avoid them. ...

The following pages describe some of the more common hazards of caving. Don't let it scare you off, though. In a certain sense caving can be compared to driving. If you had never driven a car you could get into a lot of trouble by driving out into rush hour traffic. Once you have the knowledge and experience, you can drive safely. The same is true of caving.

The General Rules of Caving Safety

NEVER go caving alone. Three people is the absolute minimum number for a trip. The reason for this is that if a person is hurt, someone must remain with the injured party while the third person goes for help. Four to six people is generally considered the optimum size party for the average caving trip. Also, other people can help you when you are having trouble (which happens a lot to varying degrees).


Start caving with experienced cavers. Learn your capabilities in easy caves. Don't exceed your limits. Get to know the abilities of your caving friends. One often hears of "high school students" who get into trouble in a cave. This is caused by inexperience and/or a "swollen head".



Hey, at least, they have the requisite minimum of three people needed for safe caving. The next two years should go exceptionally well:

KOMU: A Guide to the Pro's and Con's of the Possible 2014 Amendments to the MO Constitution....

Smart Decision 2014: Voter guide on local, state ballot issues

Posted: Nov 3, 2014 6:46 PM by Matt Kalish, KOMU 8 Digital Producer
Updated: Nov 3, 2014 6:50 PM

COLUMBIA - The Missouri ballot for election day Tuesday features four proposed amendments to the state constitution dealing with varying issues, including one that would change how school districts evaluate teachers and another which would allow state lawmakers to override additional actions by the governor.

Voters in Columbia will also see two propositions on their ballots.

To help voters make an informed, smart decision on Election Day KOMU 8 News has complied this guide which ties together our coverage and provides an overview of issue.

KOMU 8 News will provide complete election results online and on air after the polls close at 7 p.m.

Amendment 2:



Dr. Keith Ablow: Let's Invade Everywhere for the Sake of Democracy!

It’s time for an “American jihad”
By Dr. Keith Ablow | Published October 28, 2014


An American jihad would reawaken in American citizens the certain knowledge that our Constitution is a sacred document that better defines and preserves the liberty and autonomy of human beings than the charter of any other nation on earth.

The Constitution, along with the miracle of our nation's founding and the providential history of America fighting and winning war after war against oppressive regimes, proves our manifest destiny not only to preserve our borders and safety and national character at home, but to spread around the world our love of individual freedom and insist on its reflection in every government.


We would accept the fact that an American jihad could mean boots on the ground in many places in the world where human rights are being denigrated and horrors are unfolding. Because wherever leaders and movements appear that seek to trample upon the human spirit, we have a God-given right to intervene — because we have been to the mountaintop of freedom, and we have seen the Promised Land spanning the globe.


We the People of the United States are good and we are right.
And we need the spirit of an American jihad to properly invite, intensify and focus our intentions to preserve, protect and defend our Constitution here at home, and to seek to spread its principles abroad.

Source: www foxnews com/opinion/2014/10/28/its-time-for-american-jihad/

Apparently, Keith has been "psychiatrin' " too hard and has lost touch with the last decade or so of life in the USA. Seemingly, he has learned nothing about invading countries and attempting to convert said countries to democracy. Strangely too, in the his piece, France, Sweden and Germany are not nearly democratic enough for Dr. Ablow.

Of course, the USA has the greatest democracy that the world has ever seen. That clearly goes without saying.

However, is the world willing to admit this? One might wonder just how the world sees the USA's exceptional democracy.


As it turns out, there is an organization that has attempted to study the functioning of democracies and governments worldwide. This group is the Democracy Ranking Association (Förderung von Demokratiequalität) and is based in Vienna, Austria.

One may see their staff here:

One may read about their methodology here:

The Democracy Ranking relies on the following conceptual formula for quality of democracy:

Quality of Democracy = (freedom & other characteristics of the political system) & (performance of the non-political dimensions).

Concept and method: The Democracy Ranking model refers to one political dimension and five non-political dimensions, which are: (1) gender (socio-economic and educational gender equality); (2) economy (economic system); (3) knowledge (knowledge-based information society, research and education); (4) health (health status and health system); (5) environment (environmental sustainability). To every dimension different indicators are assigned, therefore the dimensions behave as indicator-based. All indicators are transformed to a value range of “1” to “100”, where “1” represents the weakest (poorest) and “100” the strongest (best) value. For every individual Democracy Ranking release, the used indicators are being specifically (and again) re-transformed to the value range from “1” to “100”. Therefore, when results of different Democracy Rankings are compared, scores can deviate, only the ranking positions stay constant.


Comprehensive gender dimension: Because gender indicators with a political orientation are assigned to the political dimension, the political dimension already contains gender information. Out of an interest of wanting to know what a possible ranking pattern of a broader gender dimension might be, the Democracy Ranking calculates a “comprehensive gender dimension” (a so-called seventh dimension). The ranking scores of that comprehensive gender dimension are also documented, however, they do not impact the aggregated ranking of the Democracy Ranking. The comprehensive gender dimension is based as an aggregation on the following indicators with the following weight measures (see also Comprehensive Scoreboards in the Ranking Excel Files): Global Gender Gap Report 20%; Political Rights (Freedom House) 15%; Civil Liberties (Freedom House) 15%; life expectancy at birth, female (years) 16.67%; labor force, female (% of total labor force) 8.33%; and unemployment, female (% of female labor force) 8.33%. All the other indicators are weighted equally with 4.17%: primary education, pupils (% female); school enrollment, secondary, female (% gross); school enrollment, secondary, female (% net); school enrollment, tertiary, female (% gross).



So, do they admit that the USA is the world's greatest democracy?

... Umm ... Something's really wrong here. ... They think that we're ... ????? NUMBER 15 !?!?!?

Democracy Ranking 2013
  1. Norway
  2. Sweden
  3. Finland
  4. Switzerland
  5. Denmark
  6. Netherlands
  7. Germany
  8. New Zealand
  9. Austria
  10. Belgium
  11. Ireland
  12. Australia
  13. Canada
  14. United Kingdom
  15. United States



Apparently, Austria needs to be invaded first!

[hr](A lot of this OP should be understood to be SARCASTIC in nature.)

Police Chief Suggests Protests May Have Led to an Increase in the Number of 2014 St. Louis Homicides

Homicides in St. Louis poised to pass 2013 total
| Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 12:30 pm

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Homicides are up more than 25 percent in St. Louis this year, and the city is already poised to surpass the total number of killings for all of 2013.

Four more deaths in the next two months would put the number of slayings above last year’s total of 120 homicides, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. From Jan. 1 of this year through Wednesday, 117 people have been killed in St. Louis. Ninety-one homicides were reported in about the same time frame last year.


“What’s the only thing that’s changed since the middle of August?” Dotson said. He said one answer could be the protests that followed the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9 by a Ferguson police officer.

“I believe there is some segment of the community that feels empowered by what’s going on,” Dotson said.



Bizarre. Perhaps it is time to get a new police chief in St. Louis. However, I might be misreading his remarks.

Access to St. Louis crime statistics seems to be here:

Alan Eustace: A Successful Skydive from around 135,890 ft

24 October 2014 Last updated at 18:35 ET
Google's Alan Eustace beats Baumgartner's skydiving record

A senior Google vice president, Alan Eustace, has broken the world altitude record for a parachute jump set in 2012 by Austrian Felix Baumgartner.

Mr Eustace was carried by a large helium balloon from New Mexico to over 40km (25 miles) above the earth.

The 57-year-old leapt out in a specially-designed space suit, reaching speeds of more than 1,300km/h.

He exceeded the speed of sound, setting off a small sonic boom, and set several skydiving records in the process.



Yes, that is an awesome statement by Chaffetz - very Palinesque save the self-reflection....

Death penalty fuels violence in Iraq, says U.N. report

Source: Reuters

By Tom Miles
GENEVA | Sun Oct 19, 2014 2:25pm EDT

Iraq should stop its widespread use of the death penalty, which is unjust, flawed and only fuels the violence it purports to deter, the United Nations said in a report on Sunday.

Sixty people were hanged in Iraq by the end of August this year, and although that is fewer than the 177 who were executed in 2013, 1,724 people remained on death row.

Iraq tends to carry out the sentence in batches because President Jalal Talabani opposes the death penalty so a vice president orders executions when he is out of the country, said the report, published jointly by the U.N. Mission in Iraq and the U.N. Human Rights Office.

Judges often pass death sentences based on evidence from disputed confessions or secret informants, condemning suspects who are unaware of their rights, may have been tortured and have no defense attorney until they arrive in court, the report said.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/10/19/us-iraq-un-idUSKCN0I80QK20141019

Interesting exchanges abound: Chuck Todd seems to 'appreciate' being told to take a long walk....

Here is an excerpt from a facebook Q&A with Chuck Todd from October 17, 2014:

Here is the contact information for the City of Hammond, IN....

Email via webform:



Hammond City Hall
5925 Calumet Avenue
Hammond,IN 46320


(219) 853-6300

Here is more on the incident:

Hammond police accused of excessive force in traffic stop

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

HAMMOND, Ind. (WLS) --
A police officer broke a car window and used a stun gun on a man during a traffic stop in Hammond, Ind., as a 14-year-old boy in the backseat recorded video on a cell phone.

Lisa Mahone and her boyfriend, Jamal Jones, accuse the officers of excessive force, false arrest and battery in a federal lawsuit. The couple said they were on their way to visit her dying mother.

"My first thing that I said to them, 'My kids in the car. My momma's passing. Can we please just make this as quick as possible. Here's our information. Can we go to the hospital?' He threw that out the window," Jones said.

Mahone was pulled over at 3:45 p.m. on September 24, 2014, at 169th Street and Cline Avenue Service Road because she and Jones were not wearing seat belts as required by Indiana law, a fact she does not dispute. Mahone produced her driver's license for police.



Here is a longer version of the video of the disturbing incident:

Here is more on the Hammond Police Department:

Police shatter car window, extract passenger after alleged seatbelt violation


The Hammond Police Department has been mired in controversy recently after several uses of excessive force. Additionally, there is a federal lawsuit pending after an HPD officer crashed a family cookout and shot a family pet in the face while inside its own yard, secured by an electric fence. In yet another recent incident, an officer was filmed whipping an HPD K-9 and lifting off the ground it by its leash. Both officers were supported by department officials and faced no consequences.



Here is one of the separate incidents (noted above) that involved the Hammond Police Department - WARNING the pictures of the wounded dog are graphic:

Pit bull shot in face, Hammond cop claims self defense
By Lisa Chavarria, FOX 32 News Reporter
Posted: Jun 10, 2014 6:32 PM CST
Updated: Jun 15, 2014 6:32 PM CST

HAMMOND, Ind. (FOX 32 News) -

A family is outraged after their pit bull was shot by a police officer, Monday.

The dog was recovering at home on Tuesday afternoon. One and a half-year-old pit bull mix, “Lily” was shot in the face.

Norma Maldonado said her five children love to play with her and were doing so that day.

"Very lovable. She loves everybody that comes here, she's very playful," said Maldonado.



Here is the other of the separate incidents (noted above) that involved the Hammond Police Department - WARNING the treatment of the dog is disturbing:

Here is a longer version of the video with NSFW language and WARNING the same disturbing behavior towards the dog:

Is the Hammond Police Department steeped in a culture of violence that extends from the use of excessive force on people to the abuse of animals? All of the above incidents took place this year - 2014. Maybe it seems hyperbolic to ask the question, but should the Hammond Police Department be investigated by the DOJ for their apparent culture of violence?

Radical Tea Baggery: Joni Ernst's Responses to Campaign for Liberty - Nullification & Arrest for ACA


  1. Do you oppose the use of unmanned devices being used for law enforcement and used in order to fine citizens?
  2. Will you support a “Constitutional Carry” bill that would allow any law-abiding citizen to carry a firearm concealed without a permit?
  3. Will you support a “Castle Doctrine” bill that would protect any law-abiding citizen who is protecting their property from civil lawsuits?
  4. Would you support a bill that would remove the state and local government’s power to use eminent domain to confiscate citizen’s private property to transfer it to another private party for economic development purposes?
  5. Will you support legislation to nullify ObamaCare and authorize state and local law enforcement to arrest federal officials attempting to implement the unconstitutional health care scheme known as ObamaCare?
  6. Do you oppose taking federal money to create a state health insurance exchange?
  7. Will you support legislation that would allow TSA agents to be charged with sexual assault if they use invasive “pat-down” procedures?

District: 12
Party: R
Name: Joni K. Ernst
City: Red Oak

ANSWERS (Y = yes; N = no; + = will sponsor):
  1. Y
  2. Y+
  3. Y+
  4. Y
  5. Y
  6. Y
  7. N


How does Western Iowa spawn these right wing extremists - Ernst, King, ..?
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