8/30/10

Bill Hicks (1961-94)

Fish interviews Kobe

8/26/10

8/25/10

My Wife Knows Everything

8/21/10

Taky Kimura (Seattle)



The man Bruce Lee called his "best friend" and top instructor in the Jun Fan method of martial arts.
The book is "Regards from the Dragon-Seattle." Letters, notes, and photos shared with Bruce Lee in Seattle.

8/19/10

Revenge

8/18/10

Amendments to the Constitution

The following are the Amendments to the Constitution. The first ten Amendments collectively are commonly known as the Bill of Rights.

Amendment 1 - Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression. Ratified 12/15/1791.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment 2 - Right to Bear Arms. Ratified 12/15/1791.

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment 3 - Quartering of Soldiers. Ratified 12/15/1791.

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment 4 - Search and Seizure. Ratified 12/15/1791.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment 5 - Trial and Punishment, Compensation for Takings. Ratified 12/15/1791.

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment 6 - Right to Speedy Trial, Confrontation of Witnesses. Ratified 12/15/1791.

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.

Amendment 7 - Trial by Jury in Civil Cases. Ratified 12/15/1791.

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment 8 - Cruel and Unusual Punishment. Ratified 12/15/1791.

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment 9 - Construction of Constitution. Ratified 12/15/1791.

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment 10 - Powers of the States and People. Ratified 12/15/1791.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Amendment 11 - Judicial Limits. Ratified 2/7/1795.
The Judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States by Citizens of another State, or by Citizens or Subjects of any Foreign State.

Amendment 12 - Choosing the President, Vice-President. Ratified 6/15/1804. The Electoral College

The Electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as Vice-President, and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted for as President, and of all persons voted for as Vice-President and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate;

The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted;

The person having the greatest Number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. And if the House of Representatives shall not choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional disability of the President.

The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice-President, shall be the Vice-President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States.

Amendment 13 - Slavery Abolished. Ratified 12/6/1865.

1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 14 - Citizenship Rights. Ratified 7/9/1868.
1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.

3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.

4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.

5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.

Amendment 15 - Race No Bar to Vote. Ratified 2/3/1870.

1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.

2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 16 - Status of Income Tax Clarified. Ratified 2/3/1913.
The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.

Amendment 17 - Senators Elected by Popular Vote. Ratified 4/8/1913.

The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures.

When vacancies happen in the representation of any State in the Senate, the executive authority of such State shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, That the legislature of any State may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct.

This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution.

Amendment 18 - Liquor Abolished. Ratified 1/16/1919. Repealed by Amendment 21, 12/5/1933.
1. After one year from the ratification of this article the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited.

2. The Congress and the several States shall have concurrent power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

3. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress.

Amendment 19 - Women's Suffrage. Ratified 8/18/1920.

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 20 - Presidential, Congressional Terms. Ratified 1/23/1933.
1. The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January, and the terms of Senators and Representatives at noon on the 3d day of January, of the years in which such terms would have ended if this article had not been ratified; and the terms of their successors shall then begin.

2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall begin at noon on the 3d day of January, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.

3. If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

4. The Congress may by law provide for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the House of Representatives may choose a President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them, and for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the Senate may choose a Vice President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them.

5. Sections 1 and 2 shall take effect on the 15th day of October following the ratification of this article.

6. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years from the date of its submission.

Amendment 21 - Amendment 18 Repealed. Ratified 12/5/1933.
1. The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

2. The transportation or importation into any State, Territory, or possession of the United States for delivery or use therein of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.

3. The article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress.

Amendment 22 - Presidential Term Limits. Ratified 2/27/1951.

1. No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once. But this Article shall not apply to any person holding the office of President, when this Article was proposed by the Congress, and shall not prevent any person who may be holding the office of President, or acting as President, during the term within which this Article becomes operative from holding the office of President or acting as President during the remainder of such term.

2. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years from the date of its submission to the States by the Congress.

Amendment 23 - Presidential Vote for District of Columbia. Ratified 3/29/1961.

1. The District constituting the seat of Government of the United States shall appoint in such manner as the Congress may direct: A number of electors of President and Vice President equal to the whole number of Senators and Representatives in Congress to which the District would be entitled if it were a State, but in no event more than the least populous State; they shall be in addition to those appointed by the States, but they shall be considered, for the purposes of the election of President and Vice President, to be electors appointed by a State; and they shall meet in the District and perform such duties as provided by the twelfth article of amendment.

2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 24 - Poll Tax Barred. Ratified 1/23/1964.
1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote in any primary or other election for President or Vice President, for electors for President or Vice President, or for Senator or Representative in Congress, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax.

2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 25 - Presidential Disability and Succession. Ratified 2/10/1967.

1. In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President.

2. Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.

3. Whenever the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President.

4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

Amendment 26 - Voting Age Set to 18 Years. Ratified 7/1/1971.

1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age.

2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Amendment 27 - Limiting Changes to Congressional Pay. Ratified 5/7/1992. History

No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.

Web site designed and maintained by Steve Mount.
© 1995-2010 by Steve Mount.

8/17/10

The Silver Fox

Ground Zero Mosque

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

You Are What You Eat

8/16/10

Ventura Highway

8/15/10

Hey, you. Moron.



Squinting at the distant paradise
Let the snowbound literati take potshots at L.A. We're crying all the way to the beach.
Steve Lopez
August 15, 2010

Hey, you. Moron.
Yeah, I'm talking to you.
How could you live in a wasteland like Los Angeles?

After all these years, L.A. put-downs are still a national sport, and our critics can't all be wrong, can they?

Did you catch what Lady Gaga told New York magazine a few months back?

"I don't like Los Angeles."

Oh, and why is that, Ms. Gaga?

"The people are awful and terribly shallow."

Anything else?

"And everybody wants to be famous but nobody wants to play the game."

Huh?

"I'm from New York. I will kill to get what I need."

Honey, that happens every day in Hollywood.

I don't know Gaga's music terribly well, so I Googled a site with her most popular lyrics. The first song begins like this:

Mum mum mum mah

Mum mum mum mah

Mum mum mum mah

Mum mum mum mah

I happen not to agree with Lady G's characterization of L.A.'s populace, but I'll admit that we, like every other city in America, have some shallow citizens. How else to explain the fact that Staples Center was packed to the rafters on Wednesday night with people paying money to see Gaga, who recently performed in Chicago in a see-through fishnet body sock and wants to be an actress.

Like Gaga, I might have been guilty of my own L.A. put-downs once upon a time, having grown up in the San Francisco Bay Area, where the topic of seceding from California is never off the table.

But then I moved here, and I found my way past the obvious — the bad traffic, the superficial types, the mini-malls — and realized that this is the city where the 21st century is likely to be defined. Sure we're struggling, but we're struggling with the crucial issues of our times — and we're doing it with the ocean lapping at our feet, under the shade of the palms and with a backdrop of mountains in the distance. Besides, as a local columnist, I took an oath to defend my turf, even if I might occasionally backhand the governor and the mayor.

To be honest, I now count nonresident insults as a source of pride. L.A. is so culturally, politically and economically significant not just in the country, but in the world, that outsiders feel entitled to attack, to simplify and to memorialize their illusion of superiority.

Take, for instance, the July 28 edition of the New York Times. In the Fashion & Style section (why not be honest about New York's obsession with appearance and call it the Image section, as we do at the L.A. Times?), a story by Celia McGee addressed a visit to New York by Santa Monica writer Mona Simpson.

And here's the pearl:

"In Los Angeles, the hometown of the movies, and a place not known to be crawling with literary cognoscenti, Ms. Simpson said she was nonetheless friendly with lots of people who write books, as well as playwrights and screenwriters."

So Simpson lives in Los Angeles, and yet not only does she know writers — in addition to being one herself — but she is friends with some of them.

Astounding.

I called Simpson to see if she would be friends with me.

"It's the oldest prejudice in the world," Simpson said, referring to the Eastern idea that Los Angeles is a vast unpolished territory of unspeakable vapidity (not that we don't have some of that).

Simpson said she'd just gone to a party for Pulitzer pumpkin-winning food writer Jonathan Gold, and there were lots of writers, artists, photographers and painters there, all of them being "nonetheless friendly" with one another.

By some oversight, I didn't get an invitation. Imagine my shock at discovering not only that there are literary cognoscenti in Los Angeles, but that I'm not one of them. I felt a little better after talking to acclaimed writer T.C. Boyle, a USC professor and Santa Barbara resident who told me he generally avoids writerly gatherings.

Michael Silverblatt, the New York transplant you know and love as KCRW's Bookworm, said New York writers came west in the 1930s and '40s to make money in Hollywood, and their letters home were like dispatches from India by British colonialists. L.A. came off as "some uncivilized place" where "you're not going to find people like us," and that outdated idea has persisted.

But legions of writers have moved west for years, Silverblatt said, to escape the horrors of nonstop book events in New York, where they grew tired of constant encounters with writers "who got a bigger advance."

Hear, hear. But enough on books.

The most creative recent L.A. putdown wasn't from Lady Gaga or the New York Times, but from the Willamette Weekly newspaper in Portland, Ore. Editor Ben Waterhouse actually thanked the "City of Smog" for creating the kimchee-stuffed taco, but otherwise summed us up like this:

"Los Angeles: A cancerous lesion on California's bottom, founded on a criminal disregard for water rights and sustained on a steady diet of shattered aspirations and overpriced vodka. What has L.A. ever given us? American Apparel ads, Scientology and Lakers fans."

I e-mailed Waterhouse to ask how much time he's spent in L.A., which he writes about with such authority.

"None whatsoever," he wrote back, saying he'd been in Southern California before but never Los Angeles. "That sentence was pure agitprop in a town [Portland] where dissing on LA is instinctual, and children curse the Lakers before they learn the names of their parents, pets and bodily functions. General xenophobia is the local pastime, and California the favorite target."

We know, and we're flattered.

Cue it up, Randy Newman.

L.A.

We love it!

steve.lopez@latimes.com

Copyright © 2010, Los Angeles Times

8/14/10

Stand By (David Sedaris)


The New Yorker_ Aug 09_ 2010 -

Who is Alex Trebek?

Shouts & Murmurs
Who Is Alex Trebek?
by Simon Rich August 16, 2010


Last month, Alex Trebek, the host of “Jeopardy!,” celebrated his seventieth birthday. It didn’t get much acknowledgment, and I’m worried that his feelings were a little hurt. Here are some clues that he read on last night’s show.


Category: TV Game-Show Hosts


$200: This game-show host has been on “Jeopardy!” for twenty-six years, and yet he never gets even the tiniest shred of respect from anyone.

$400: This game-show host is routinely asked to work ten or even twelve hours a day, even though the union maximum is eight hours. His doctors have given him a diagnosis of stress-related heart disease, but his producers couldn’t care less. They just keep heaping work on him like he’s some kind of pack animal.

$600: A lot of people think that this game-show host doesn’t know the answers to any of the questions and would be lost without his cards. But that’s not true. He knows a lot of the answers—he just can’t say them, obviously, because he’s the host and that would ruin the game for everyone.

$800: Even though he’s the public face of “Jeopardy!” and has devoted his life to it for years, this game-show host was not invited to last week’s annual softball game against “Wheel of Fortune.” When he confronted the producers about the slight, they laughed like it wasn’t a big deal and seemed surprised by how upset he was.

$1,000: This game-show host’s job has been described as “cushy.” How’s this for cushy? He’s missed only one day of taping in twenty-six years, and that was because he’d been in a major car accident. He also has to stand throughout the show (unlike some hosts, who don’t need to be named).


Double Jeopardy!

Category: TV Game-Show Hosts II


$400: Someone wrote on a blog that this game-show host is a “pompous jerk.” Would a pompous jerk volunteer for World Vision, a charity that raises money for Third World countries? Because that’s what this host does. He doesn’t talk about it a lot, because he doesn’t want to turn it into some big public thing, but he’s been volunteering with this organization for decades.

$800: Another person wrote on a blog that this game-show host “tries to speak in a British accent, to look smarter,” but what they don’t understand is that this host is from Canada and that’s just naturally how he talks. Can a man help where he was born?

$1,200: Last thing with the blogs: Someone called this host “smug” last week because he sometimes corrects contestants’ pronunciations. But what is this host supposed to do? Let the incorrect pronunciations stand? Then everybody would think he was a moron for not making a correction. It’s a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation for this host.

$1,600: This game-show host has been mocked by comedians for decades and made to look like a fool on national television in front of his family. He never complains, because he is a good sport, but, at the end of the day, he’s still a human being and obviously the mean impersonations sometimes hurt the feelings of this host.

$2,000: Little-known fact about this host: he can bench-press his own weight.
Here’s a hint: it ain’t Sajak.


Final Jeopardy!


This game-show host turns seventy-one on July 22, 2011. He has never been given a surprise party, but a gesture like that would probably make up for a couple of things. ♦

8/13/10

Worse Persons in the World

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Chase (1971)



Jazziana
Our high school jazz band played this last year, and now we're playing it in marching band this year. It's so fun to play! I just love it.

signman250
One of my favorite songs of all times! What a great loss when we lost Bill Chase and his band! This is a timeless tune, I just wish it got more radio play time! Classic rock stations should play this often.

alfzep
Chase was from Dorchester, Massachussets. Oct 30' 1934, They died August 9 1974, 36 years ago.

903davesharonpoky
You think Lynard Skynard had it bad when their plane crashed? Well, actually it was bad; but this entire group, Chase, were all killed in a plane crash on August 8, 1974 near Jackson, Minnesota.

tjcjohnson
Wow....I played this in high school too -- in the mid-1970s! Classics never wear out! (But why can't I find this on iTunes!?!?!)

flipwiggins
The final little stab at the end always seemed to me to be a homage to Iron Butterflys' INAGADADAVIDA...maybe...maybe not!

yousuckbendersgreat
Just got this in Jazz band today...looking forward to a month of our trumpet section not playing loud enough.

The Professional Left

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

8/12/10

Leap Penis

Hercules Theme

Thunderduk!

Jackie Evancho (America's Got Talent)

8/11/10

When You Can't Get Chicken McNuggets At 6 AM


Woman Goes Crazy In McDonalds DriveThru - Watch more Funny Videos

Why Can't I Own a Canadian?

Why can't I own a Canadian?

In her radio show, Dr Laura Schlesinger said that, as an observant
Orthodox Jew, homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus
18:22, and cannot be condoned under any circumstance.


Dear Dr. Laura:

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I
have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that
knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend
the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that
Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination ... End of
debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other
elements of God's Laws and how to follow them.

1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and
female, provided they are from neighboring nations. A friend of mine
claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you
clarify? Why can't I own Canadians?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in
Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair
price for her?

3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her
period of Menstrual uncleanliness - Lev.15: 19-24. The problem is how
do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a
pleasing odor for the Lord - Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbors.
They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus
35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated
to kill him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?

6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an
abomination, Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than
homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this? Are there
'degrees' of abomination?

7. Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I
have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading
glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle-room
here?

8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair
around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev.
19:27. How should they die?

9. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes
me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two
different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments
made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also
tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go
to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them?
Lev.24:10-16. Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family
affair, like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)
I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy
considerable expertise in such matters, so I'm confident you can help.
Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.

Your adoring fan.

James M. Kauffman, Ed.D. Professor Emeritus,
Dept. Of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education
University of Virginia PS (It would be a damn shame if we couldn't own a
Canadian)

8/9/10

Best in the West



8/8/10



Pat Tillman's mother on Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal: I told you so
Mary Tillman speaks on Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal and his role in covering up the truth about her son's death.
By Mary Tillman

Army Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal was forced to retire because of remarks he made to a Rolling Stone reporter. Having read the article that led to his departure, I feel strangely validated. "The Runaway General" described by journalist Michael Hastings is exactly the arrogant individual I believed him to be.

McChrystal was in charge of Joint Special Operations Command in 2004, when my son, Pat, was killed in Afghanistan. But I didn't become aware of him until March 2007. That's when someone anonymously sent an Associated Press reporter a copy of a high-priority correspondence. The memo was written on April 29, 2004, by McChrystal and sent to Gen. John P. Abizaid, Gen. Bryan Douglas Brown and Lt. Gen. Philip R. Kensinger Jr. Its purpose was to warn President George W. Bush and other officials to avoid making public comments about Pat's heroic death at the hands of the enemy, because it was beginning to seem "highly possible that Corporal Tillman was killed by friendly fire."

The memo went on to caution against "unknowing statements by our country's leaders which might cause public embarrassment if the circumstances of Corporal Tillman's death become public."

We knew nothing about this memo at the time it was written. In fact, we did not learn until weeks after Pat's memorial service that it was even possible he was killed by friendly fire.

The memo makes it clear there was no intention of telling the truth unless circumstances made it absolutely necessary. Much later, during Brig. Gen. Gary Jones' investigation of Pat's death, McChrystal was asked why we were kept in the dark.

"Question: Once you became aware that this was a possible fratricide, was there a conscious decision made not to tell the family of the possibility?"

"Witness: There was a conscious decision on who we told about the potential because we did not know all the facts. I did tell the senior leadership [long redaction] about the possibility prior to the memorial ceremony, because I felt they needed to know that before the ceremony. I believe that we did not tell the family of the possibility because we didn't want to give them a half-baked finding."

McChrystal says they didn't want to give us a half-baked finding. Yet that is exactly what they did. Rather than being told there were questions about Pat's death, we were presented with a contrived story, an absolute lie about how he had been killed by enemy fire.

What many people don't realize is that Pat's autopsy and field hospital report were very suspicious from the start. The autopsy gives a description of Pat's body that led us to later question if the autopsy was even his, and the field hospital report contains language that suggests he was alive when he was brought back to the field hospital at Forward Operating Base Salerno. Yet soldiers' statements indicated Pat was decapitated by the barrage of bullets, and he was deemed killed in action by the medic on the scene.

These horrifying discrepancies raised dire questions. Even the medical examiner called for a criminal investigation, but the adjutant general prevented it from going forward. By covering up the circumstances of Pat's death, McChrystal and the rest of the chain of command may have, knowingly or unknowingly, covered up a crime.

McChrystal's actions should have been grounds for firing him back then. That is why it was so disturbing to us when President Obama instead promoted McChrystal to the position of top commander in Afghanistan last year. At the time, I sent the president an e-mail and a letter reminding him of McChrystal's involvement in Pat's coverup. In the letter, I suggested McChrystal be "scrutinized very carefully" by the Senate Armed Services Committee. Pat's father and I both gave statements to the media reiterating that McChrystal should be properly vetted. We had real knowledge of McChrystal's questionable behavior, of actions that should perhaps have disqualified him from this position, and we felt it would be negligent not to do something. Our entreaties fell on deaf ears.

After McChrystal was forced to step down in June, I was contacted by several reporters and asked to give my thoughts about McChrystal, but I declined to comment. I hadn't read the piece in its entirety, so it seemed inappropriate to respond. Now, though, I have read and thought about the article. Obama clearly had no choice but to relieve McChrystal of his command. But how sad that the president and Congress didn't properly scrutinize the general a year ago.

People have asked, "Why is Pat so special that so much attention is given to his death"? I understand that question. Thousands of soldiers and Marines have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many of their families have also been lied to, yet those deaths have not received the attention Pat's did. And Pat's death continues to be in the news.

Pat's story initially became news because he was well known for having played in the NFL. The government used his fame to create propaganda for the war. Pat is not more important or special than any of the others who have fought in these wars, but the truth of what happened to Pat — and to every soldier who has died — is important. The truth shines a light on systematic corruption, incompetence and lack of accountability in the military and in government.

Over the last five years, the Pentagon and Congress have had numerous opportunities to hold accountable those responsible for the coverup of Pat's death. Each time they've failed. The government didn't just lie to us; it lied to a nation.

Mary Tillman is the author of "Boots on the Ground by Dusk: Searching for Answers in the Death of Pat Tillman." A documentary featuring her and other family and friends will open in theaters Aug. 20.

Copyright © 2010, Los Angeles Times

Marching Morons. They Walk Among Us.



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