Whorled View

September 18, 2008

In 2030 Japan will have the most powerful WMD, and in Space

I’ve previously posted about space based Solar Power, which converts sunlight into ludicrous-power lasers that are beamed back to earth.  We’ll, Japan is serious about doing it:


Now, of course, this is intended to be a technology to save the planet (it’s solar power for heaven’s sake), but will require little to no effort to instantly start using it to selectrively fry whole neighborhoods without any warning and with breathtaking accuracy.

It seems this is a technology we should be working on – if only to safegaurd ourselves against others with this ability.  Remember Japan is still the only country which attacked us on our soil in the 20th century.  They’re utterly peaceful now, but that’s not stopping them from building the world’s first Star Wars technology death ray.

Here’s the amazing thing … by thier own admission it will cost much more per MW than conventional earth-based Solar plans so is there an alterior motivation here?  Let’s just hope that Iran doesn’t start building one of these.

There is one good thing about having a geostationary death-ray, though.  They are easy to shoot down (provided that you send enough bombs it’s way to make the death-ray too weak to defend itself).

September 16, 2008

Bush-Doctrine Schmoctrine

I learned something pretty funny that I thought I’d pass on.  If you caught Charlie Gibson trying to be a barely-tolerant condescending snob to Sarah Palin for not knowing what the “Bush Doctrine”, you’ll think this is hilarious: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/12/AR2008091202457.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

“… if Charlie Gibson using a more obscure definition for “Bush Doctrine” isn’t funny enough … Gibson got the document wrong and Palin got it right, and after reading it I can only guess he’s never read it himself.”

In short, according to the originator of the term “Bush Doctrine” (coined even before 9-11) the definition Gibson used in the interview is NOT the original definition (Bush Doctrine: one-sided foreign policy), neither is it even the most widely understood definition (Bush Doctrine: spreading democracy throughout the world).  It is however the moveon.org favored definition (and a mangled definition as I’ll show in the next 2 paragraphs) used by ultra-liberal organizations in a way that misrepresents Bush’s policy on preemptive strikes.

Yes, if Gibson using a more obscure definition for “Bush Doctrine” isn’t funny enough, if you actually read the document to which Gibson refers to for his narrow definition (http://web.archive.org/web/20080307001029/http://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc/nss/2002/nss5.html) you’ll discover that the document is more about what Palin said than what Gibson said.  That’s right: Gibson got the document wrong and Palin got it right, and after reading it I can only guess he’s never read it himself.  Palin said the document was about protecting us from extremists, whereas Gibson wrongly thought the document was about preemptive strikes against any nation we found threatening.

“In other words, the document and Bush’s policies have never allowed, let alone advocated preemptively striking simply any nation that we might find threatening.”

Preemptive strikes was just one of the many strategies in that document, including additional strategies such as “enhance diplomacy” and “build coalitions”, but more importantly the document is very specific that it applies only to rogue, terrorist-sponsoring states who target civilians and non-combatants for terrorist activities.  In other words, the document and Bush’s policies have never allowed, let alone advocated preemptively striking simply any nation that we might find threatening.

Kudos to Palin for not being so narrow minded and misinformed and rude as Gibson seemed to be.  Double kudos that she wasn’t a condescending snob about enduring such a tedious interview with someone simultaneously so clueless and full of himself.

“I think we’ll start tuning into CBS, as apparently the ABC anchor is just as misinformed and unprofessional as those found on NBC.”

We’ve been getting our daily world news from Charlie on ABC World news report, but after this shameful display I think we’ll start tuning into CBS, as apparently the ABC anchor is just as misinformed and unprofessional as those found on NBC.

Edit: Sadly, CBS then proceeded with Katie Couric’s heavily edited and one-sided interrogations (Biden nor Obama got any) … seemingly trying to out do ABC in their efforts to sway the public to their opinion.

September 8, 2008

We were Soldiers. Out on Video. It will change you.

Filed under: Blogroll,defense,media,Politics,Sociology,war — lullabyman @ 7:01 pm

It’s actually been out on video for a few years.  I Tivo’d it the other night.

There are a lot of movies I want to watch, not because I look forward to watching them, but because I think I should because I know they will change me for the better.  Schindler’s List for example is one of them …  I don’t want to watch it but I think I should.  I still haven’t seen it.  I probably won’t until I can Tivo it because it’s just not the kind of movie you set out to rent.   When you go to rent a movie you’re typically looking for something fun and entertaining – at least that’s what I do.

“We were Soldiers” is another war movie – but unlike Schindler’s list I didn’t anticipate going away with the sick uneasy feeling expect to have with Schidler’s list.  I’m not sure why … perhaps it’s because I know a lot more about WWII than the Vietnam War.  Perhaps it’s because although 56,000 soldiers were killed in Vietnam, which is an unimaginable tragedy, in WWII 6 million Jews were slaughtered in concentration camps (2 out of every 3 European Jews) which is mindboggling in it’s devastation and then made all the worse because they were all civilians who were mostly women and children.

Anyway, often before I Tivo a show I’ll check out http://www.imdb.com for it’s rating and “We were Soldiers” was rated a 6.9, which is pretty good, but not exceptional, so I clicked on the rating – that will show you a distribution plot to see how people rated it.  Wow.  If you ever check imdb.com you should always click the rating.  I don’t know how they came up with 6.9, but if you look at the distribution you’ll see that 50% of watchers rated it an 8 or higher (1/3 of those gave it a ’10’).  So I then read the comments.  Those who were in Vietnam as soldiers commented again and again that with this film Hollywood finally got it right.  I agree with them that all the romanticizing the directors did with “Pearl Harbor” and other war-movies was distracting if not downright bothersome to me.

In summary, “We were Soldiers” is a true story about a general and his Brigade in Vietnam in 1965 as they were dropped right in the middle of the Viet Cong against some unbelievable odds.  It showed what happened back home with the families on base, and what happened to those who lived through it on the battlefield (mostly young men), and it showed the character of the people who fought it, and how they thought, and exactly what they did.

If you’ve ever wondered about what Veterans think about war in general then it’s probably a good movie to see.  I think with McCain on the ticket, and considering that he was a prisoner of war (although the movie didn’t go into that experience) it might  help you understand his views.  The general impression and understanding that you get at the end is that war Veterans, no matter how they feel about any particular war, will all basically have the same opinion about war in general.  In other words, if you want a president that will only engage in War when absolutely necessary then it seems you should want a man who lived that experience in a very real and personal way.  They all go into war differently with different attitudes and perceptions and goals.  They all come out however with a very similar opinion: War is hell and is something you do not engage in lightly.

One other thing: I don’t care how tough you are.  You’d better have a handkercheif or box of kleenex nearby.

July 14, 2008

9 Troops Killed – How many soldiers is that?!

Check out the definition of a Troop:


Notice something strange?  With 14 possible definitions, every single definition indicates that a troop is more than one person.  So how many people died when 9 troops are killed?  Well, let see if the minimum for a troop is 2 soldiers (and more likely 4 to 50), then with 9 troops killed that’s at least 18 soldiers, or more likely 36 to 450 soldiers … right?


Apparently when you’re the one who gets to create the news you can redefine words at your whim and fancy to mislead, confuse, and persuade.  In this case, whenever the mainstream media talks about “troops” being killed, it seems that according to the media a troop is one soldier.  That’s right.  One soldier.  So apparently if you’re in the news corp you can refer to Private Smith as Troop Smith (kind of like Trooper Smith except that “Trooper” sounds like only one person, and that’s not really what the media is going for).  Now, Troop Smith, is in my meager understanding a Troop of multiple Smiths, but then I’m just a regular guy who just reads dictionaries.  What do I know?  I’m not the all-knowing media.

Also when you own the media you’re allowed to ignore existing and more suitable words that the ones you redefine or make up, especially if they don’t serve your purpose.  You can, for example, ignore the word “Soldier” which, like “Trooper”, sounds like only one person.  That’s not good if you want 9 Soldiers to sound like even more than what they already are.

Someone correct me if I’m wrong – but 9 soldier deaths (as horrible as they are), is mathematically far far less than 18 soldier deaths , or (what fits the definition more closely) anywhere from 36 to 450 soldier deaths, which has a lot of shock value.

Just something to think about next time you read X-many troops killed.  Don’t be fooled by the mainstream media.  Instead, just get out your dictionary and a pen and write in there after definition number 14:

15) troop – what the msm likes to call one soldier when they want the number to sound really large.

January 11, 2008

Protect Iraqi Democracy until 2016

Filed under: Blogroll,muslim,partisan politics,Politics,Uncategorized,war — lullabyman @ 7:41 pm

For a couple years now the Democrats have been saying we should leave Iraq and pronto. Suggesting anything more than 2-3 years is considered outrageous at this point. Even when we invaded Iraq I doubt anyone was thinking it should have taken more than 8 years for them to create and ratify a new constitution and run a new government under that constitution. We forgot how long it took us.

When the US declared independence (1776) the war took 6 years to win that independence (1782). It then took an additional 5 years to complete the constitution – a very large document that normally takes 30 minutes to read (including signatures). Even after it was completed it took 3 years to get it fully ratified by all the states so that the government could operate with constitutional powers (1790). In all this process took 14 years among a fairly united people (compared to the people in Iraq) to create and ratify a constitution.

The democrats however want to crucify the current administration because the Iraqi’s have not completed and ratified their constitution within 6 years of gaining independence from a Bathist dictatorship. The war isn’t even over, and they think it should be completed and ratified already. It took us an additional 8 years after the war ended to do that while being free from insurgencies … so why should Iraq be expected to do it before the war is even over?

Some might say that they’ve had a working government for a couple years now so they have no excuse. On the contrary, all their efforts are tied up in fighting the insurgency and reconstruction and stabilizing the economy. Without a ratified constitution the government they have now is at best a band-aid that won’t last for very long without our constant support.

What’s more is that although there were strong differences among the US citizens in 1782, there were no divisions that came close to the disparities within Iraq. The challenges there are so much more difficult. Although they have a blueprint of many existing constitutions to help them get started, their’s is a people far different than any other truly free country. The existing constitutions may make it even more difficult for them to distinguish their national identity and satisfy all their constituents.

It just seem to me that the best way to help Iraq get a new constitution is for us to help them with the peace for as long as it took us to get our constitution. That would be 14 years from the day we invaded. That means we protect that democratic process until 2016. We made the mess, so we create an atmosphere that at least approximates the atmosphere under which our constitution was created: an atmosphere of peace, free from opposition against democratic processes. Anything less will be expecting from them far more than what we did ourselves, and frankly speaking I don’t think their current leaders are any better than were our founding fathers. They need all the help they can get just to keep with the time-line that our founding fathers followed.

October 21, 2007

Winning the War on Terror through Vitamin C

Filed under: defense,economics,Health,medicine,middle-east,Science,Vitamin C,war — lullabyman @ 3:05 am

The war on Terror costs money. Lots of it. It seems then that the best way to win the war on terror is to free up tons of money, making it available to the economy so the war on terror can be funded. After all, most wars are not won on the battlefield anymore than they are in the pocketbook. Whoever can afford to fight the longest and hardest wins.

Where to get such money? Well, according to the results of a British researcher: http://torontosun.com/Lifestyle/2007/10/20/4590932-sun.html we could very likely solve heart disease problem cheaply and efficiently and heart disease is (the #1 killer in the United States) costs Americans more money every year by far than does the Iraqi conflict. The wild thing is that tons of research backs up this claim the cheap doses of Vitamin E (an antioxidant), cheap resveratrol (another antioxidant), and cheap megadoses of Vitamin C can prevent, and even reverse the conditions that lead to heart attacks, and yet our “noble” allopathic tradition discourages it, claiming that it’s dangerous because it can give you diarrhea … or even worse: it might make you fart!

Oh! The horrors!

Meanwhile the war on terror is bankrupting the world, yet heart disease costs even more. Same thing with Cancer (costs more than the war on terror), which disease is also very treatable, very effectively by extremely cheap IV based ascorbate treatments (as high as 200 mg/day, but usually 70 mg twice/week is adequate). So if we started using these cheap treatments and reinvesting that money usually spent on Cancer and Heart Disease into the economy then we would have more than enough to pay for the War on Terror. Not to mention it would save 100,000,000’s lives every year worldwide – allowing the patients to live full and productive lives.

But then who’s going to pay for all the Yachts? No wonder the AMA and your very own doctor frowns upon anything that has anything to do with Vitamin C. And so we’ll bankrupt the economy of the world. Just remember – it wasn’t the war that did it. It was the refusal to save money where money could have been saved.

October 5, 2007

Why We Owe Israel Our Support

Filed under: Blogroll,christianity,defense,judaism,middle-east,Politics,Sociology,war — lullabyman @ 8:21 pm

Today is “Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day” (not to be confused with the Israeli “Jerusalem Day” held in May) an Iranian-invented occasion to call for the wiping off of Israel from the Middle East map. In celebration of the day Mahmoud Ahbmadinejad, of course, has already spewed his nonsense that Israel’s existence is illegal (http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/909545.html). So I think Israel supporters should also have Jerusalem day to show our support for Israel. In particular I think it’s important for all Americans to finally accept why we owe such support to the Jews.

What if you were given irrefutable evidence that top American and British leaders knew that Jews were ignominiously being slaughtered by the millions in 1942, but kept it hush-hush until late 1945, after which time most of the 9 million European Jews were quietly being executed in concentration camps ? The “final solution” didn’t really happen until 1942, so that would cover by far most of the concentration camp deaths. What if those deaths all occurred because most Jews thought they were just being “relocated” so they didn’t put up much of a fight? What if it could have been significantly avoided if of the US and the UK made the most meager efforts to notify the Jewish people (air-dropping leaflets was a daily occurrence), but instead they covered it up?

Well … that’s exactly what happened. Yes, our leaders were quietly complicit in the murder of millions of Jews over the space of a few years. This has been publicly known for over 30 years now, but I never heard about it throughout my public school education. I’m sure it still isn’t taught, although I don’t know why it isn’t. The point is that Roosevelt and his whole cabinet knew it was happening and suppressed the distribution of that information.

You don’t believe me? As I said, it’s thoroughly well documented. Read these excerpts from a speech (http://www.theopavlidis.com/reprints/matsas/part1.htm) given a few years ago to the Jewish Community Center in DC by Dr. Michael Matsas, an expert on the subject (Read his book if you want the documented references):

American diplomats stationed in Istanbul and Cairo sent advice to Washington, as to how the Greek Jews could be saved. The documents with such advice were ignored and were filed in the National Archives, where I was the first one to discover them in 1975. I found over 500 pages of such documents, thanks to the “Freedom of Information Act.” The Allies with their silence helped the Germans in the slaughter of the Jews. The Allies with their silence eliminated even our instinct of survival, which in case of danger, orders you to hide, flee, or fight. They preferred to damage even their own military interests The Germans needed few soldiers to capture Jews who did not offer any resistance.Thanks to the abandonment of the Jews by our British and American allies, thousands of able Jewish men and women were led like lambs to the slaughter houses of the death camps. It is abundantly clear now that the United States knew about the mass killing of the Jews as early as July 1941. In October 1941 the American Military Attache in Berlin reported, “The normal procedure for the Nazis upon taking over a city in the East, was to establish local commandos, to separate the Jews, and to shoot them.” A logical conclusion, writes Richard Breitman, was that the deportees would also be killed if sent to the East.On August 1, 1942, a German businessman transmitted to the World Jewish Congress in Switzerland the information that Hitler had ordered the liquidation of all Jews throughout the territories occupied by Germany. The information was transmitted to England and the United States. John Pehle, the Executive Director of the War Refugee Board, made the following comments in a recent TV documentary: “The State Department was actively suppressing information about the Holocaust, while Undersecretary of State Breckinridge Long tried to cover it up. By suppressing information, the Government becomes an accomplice in what the Germans were doing, by hiding information from the American public. Officials of the Treasury Department who discovered the State Department’s deliberate obstruction of rescue efforts, revealed the “nasty scandal” in a report entitled, “Acquiescence of this Government in the Murder of the Jews of Europe.”A rabbi from Baltimore, Maryland, in a bitter sermon, suggested that, “If we had any Jewish dignity, we would picket the White House and demand that the President use his influence to stop the killing of the Jews.” Within an hour, the Board of his Congregation fired him, for his disrespect of President Roosevelt, who was beloved by the American Jews and who received 90% of their votes.

In November 1942 Rabbi Stephen Wise publicly announced the murder of over two million Jews. In a meeting with the President, Roosevelt declared, “The Government of the United States is very well acquainted with most of the facts that you are now bringing to our attention.”

Professor David Wyman said in his book, “The Abandonment of the Jews,” that “anti-Semitism was widespread and the State Department was actively blocking information about the genocide and deliberately obstructed rescue efforts. The press had little to say and this was in the inner pages. The President refused to focus on the issue. The United States and Great Britain were deeply committed to a policy of not rescuing the Jews, while, if the US accepted a policy of rescue, hundreds of thousands would have been saved and in the process it would have rescued the conscience of the nation.”

Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau wrote, “We knew in Washington from August 1942 on that the Nazis were planning the extermination of all the Jews of Europe. Yet for nearly 18 months, the State Department did practically nothing. Officials procrastinated or suppressed information about atrocities.”

Why did the Government of the United States demonstrate such hostility toward the European Jews? In the TV documentary “America and the Holocaust – Deceit and Indifference,” I believe there is the answer to this question. “Pervasive anti-Semitism dominated the US in 1940. Jews were unacceptable to many employers and they were unwelcome in resorts and country clubs.”

Saving the Jews of Europe should have been a moral obligation for the US and not simply a humanitarian act. Five hundred fifty thousand American Jews served with distinction in the Armed Forces of the United States. Eleven thousand were killed, 40,000 were wounded, and almost all of them had relatives in Europe who were abandoned to the hands of the Germans. Those in power in the American government rejected thousands of applications for immigration to this enormous country. Among these applications was that of Anne Frank’s family in Amsterdam. While 6 million Jews were dying in Europe, the United States was becoming a nuclear superpower, thanks to Jewish scientists like Albert Einstein, Oppenheimer, Zillard, Teller, Rabbi, and Admiral Hyman Rickover (inventor of the nuclear submarine), while the relatives of these Jews were left to die in the gas chambers of Auschwitz and Treblinka.

The abandonment of the European Jews by President Franklin D. Roosevelt became obvious when he refused entry to this immense country to the 900 German Jews of the “St. Louis.” Six hundred of them eventually were killed by the Germans. Why is there so much Christian hate toward the Jews? I discussed this subject with a professor of theology at Cornell University who did not know that I am a Jew. He concluded, “Killing the Jews is not enough.” “What can be worse than killing them?” I asked with obvious surprise and shock. “Eternal damnation,” was his reply. I wonder what Jesus would say, if he knew in what kind of degradation fell his noble teachings like “Love your neighbor as you would yourself’ or “Don’t do to others what you don’t want them to do to you.”

I conclude with a poem by Yitzhak Katznelson, which was written a few days before the Germans killed him, and it seems to be appropriate even today.

Sure enough, the nations did not interfere, nor did they protest,
Nor shake their heads, nor did they warn the murderers.
Never a murmur. It was as if the leaders of the nations
Were afraid that the killings might stop.

It stinks when history thumps you on the head. In the defense of those who heard second-hand (like most Church leaders) I’m sure that for most the stories and numbers were just to horrific to be believed as people learned about it through the American rumor mill, but that’s no excuse for the grievous level of apathy – though I think we see the same thing today with regard to the genocide in Darfur, Sierra Leone, and Tibet. Admittedly when this information first came my way my initial gut reaction was that this insidious covertness was never practiced by our leaders, followed by an assumption that there must have been a good reason that they kept quiet, but of course the very idea is ludicrous. Six million European Jews, that’s 2 out of every 3, were murdered and our elected leaders were silent partners for much of the slaughter.

July 26, 2007

My God vs. Your God

Today I was hopelessly searching for a decent radio station to listen to in the garage, and in the process happened upon a “Christian music” station where they were singing some song about how great their God was. It wasn’t about “God” in general, or “the” God, but they consistently used the term “my God” with as much or more gusto on the word “my” as they did on the word “God”. I then thought – if you believe in only one God why even mention “my”, or “our”? The phrase “my God” implies that there is more than one God (my God vs. someone else’s God). That’s an oxymoron if you’re a monotheist (someone who believes in only one God).

“The obvious problem with this claim, of course, is that these people who are comparing Gods also claim to be monotheistic.”

[added 7/27: I actually don’t really have so much a problem with “my God” or “our God”, because I think people generally mean that they’ve chosen to be subject to God. In fact, “How Great Thou Art” is one of my favorite songs, as are others which frequently use this terminology to denote subservience and dedication. It seem however that not everyone uses those phrases with that intended meaning.].

I’ve also heard from many (but not all) religious people claim that their God is better than another person’s God. As a Mormon person I frequently hear this directed toward me from mainstream Christians. I’ve always responded that we worship the same God, although we understand the physical/spiritual nature of the Godhead to be different from their concept. To which they usually respond vehemently that no way is our God the same being as their God. The obvious problem with this claim, of course, is that these people who are comparing Gods also claim to be monotheistic.

The only logical rationale I can imagine for this implicit contradiction is that they consider “God” to be a concept rather than an actual being. I don’t think that is what they’re doing though since they, like me, claim that God lives, not that He’s just some kind of philosophical construct to make people feel better. So I must conclude that they’re just trained to insist that different religions believe in different Gods even though they’re monotheists, and they don’t care that what they’re saying makes no sense.

“…most of the problems in the middle east have their roots in the irrational My God vs. Your God mentality, instead of promoting the fact that we all worship the same God differently and simply have different ideas about Him.”

If one is literally referring to God with the intent to compare religions the best thing they can say is “our understanding of the nature of His being and power are different”. Of course, the implied meaning is “You’re wrong about God’s nature and power, and I’m right”, but at least it’s plainly understood that there is only one God.

From time to time I’ve heard the interesting accusation (from people of all religions, including my own) that certain people “don’t worship the true God” or variations on that theme. Although this seems very offensive, I don’t think it is as dangerous as pitting one God against another, and besides this accusation abides by the rules of a monotheistic perspective. Of course, it is an extremely presumptuous accusation to say someone simply isn’t worshiping the true God because they don’t understand the nature of God’s being and power. It is also irrational to suggest that misunderstanding something about the object of worship instantly disqualifies the worshipful actions, making them null and void; Besides there are no scriptures I know of to back up that absurd claim.

“Making such presumptuous and irrational accusations alienates others and engenders spite between religious groups, wherein the Christian should consider the counsel to ‘Judge not an unrighteous judgment’.”

It’s also obvious that making such presumptuous and irrational accusations alienates others and engenders spite between religious groups, wherein the Christian should consider the counsel to ‘Judge not an unrighteous judgment’. It can be reasonably argued that most of the problems in the middle east have their roots in the irrational My God vs. Your God mentality, instead of promoting the fact that we all worship the same God differently and simply have different ideas about Him. If the middle-east Jews, Christians, and Muslims accepted what an irrational idea that is, and that they all believe in the same God, but only interpret Him and His nature and purposes differently, then the idea of the “enemies to God” based on religious preference would dissolve as would the philosophy behind “Jihad”. The challenge there is that so much of their scriptures do seem to refer to a plurality of monotheistic Gods, so that isn’t likely to happen without a new interpretation of those verses.

Sadly, that’s not going to happen as long as religious leaderships continue to senselessly pit their monotheistic Gods against each other as the Greeks or Romans did. Fortunately, those of us in the civilized world can be rational and realize we all worship just one God, the Creator of the earth, – just differently. Admittedly some might be more accurate that others in their ideas about God, but can all worship the same God by simply doing good and appreciating each other for it.

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