China demolished a large church in coastal Wenzhou. Because the building was larger than permitted?? If that were true authorities would have stopped construction at an early stage. They waited until it had been finished and being used.
The Communist government feels threatened by people participating in churches! And this was one of the government-approved "Three Self Patriotic Movement" churches.
Wednesday, April 30, 2014
China demolished a large church in coastal Wenzhou. Because the building was larger than permitted?? If that were true authorities would have stopped construction at an early stage. They waited until it had been finished and being used.
The Obama administration's response days after the attack in Benghazi that killed Ambassador Stevens was the obviously false claim that it was response to a "movie" that was not a movie. (It was 15 minutes on YouTube that few watched.) Emails were just disclosed that show that the response was all CYA, you know, hide the incriminating tracks. And they had four goals - none of them true. Susan Rice went on all the Sunday news talk shows with a story based on those four false goals.
See Hugh Hewitt
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
Continuing their game. That is the top priority of Wall Street mega money people.
Thomas Lifson at American Thinker says Politico gave away the game. Politico says the top priority on Wall Street is themselves. And people who differ with her politics would rather have Hillary Clinton than someone who would stir things up, like Senator Ted Cruz. Because their top priority is being able to manipulate markets and pile on more wealth.
If you ever wondered what the real political issue of the day is when it comes to presidential politics, an article in Politico gives you the answer. Wall Street Big Money wants a presidential candidate who will allow the financial games enabling hedge fund billionaires, investment banks, and other financial engineering specialists to continue their merry ways. This group dominates the top one percent of the top once percent of income earners – the people who have expanded their share of national income, while the rest of the one percent (and the rest of us) get to divvy up the rest.
Of course, the Politico story doesn’t say that outright, but you can read between the lines.
In other words the top 1% of the top 1%. Is Hillary opposed to income inequality? She says so. But she certainly is happy to have the support of their billions.
Follow Lifson’s link to the Politico story.
Monday, April 28, 2014
John Kerry accused Israel of being an “apartheid state” on Friday. Uh… He knows he is saying that Israel cuts a racial group out of its society; that’s what South Africa did as a purposeful policy. That that group has diminished, or no, rights. They cannot vote or hold office, etc. Daily Beast
He is wrong. His ignorance is unbelievable. Israel allows Arabs to be full-fledged citizens. There are Arab members of the Knesset.
John F Kerry just proved that he is unhinged. He will run his limousine over anyone who gets between him and his Nobel Peace Prize. He has already made a mess and is making it worse. It’s time for him to just move on.
Sunday, April 27, 2014
Many press outlets fell for it. Not that there were misled; they jumped and missed. One of them bent the story from an interesting technology into ships powered - magically - by sea water. The Navy didn’t say that.
William Tucher at American Spectator brings the story back to reality: It takes a lot - a lot - of energy to convert sea water into fuel. The energy sum is a loss. But several news outlets got it wrong.
(Note: A few got it right: Forbes, Washington Times.)
Nature walks at Wallace Swamp Cr. Park in Kenmore . The first Monday of the month from May 3 to August 4 at 9 am. Two hours, two miles of walking. 19851 73rd Avenue NE, Kenmore.
Led by long-time wildlife observer Linda Phillips. Questions can be directed to Volunteer and Events Coordinator Cindy Shelton at 425-398-8900
Saturday, April 26, 2014
A pro-life display was vandalized at the University of Washington on Wednesday, April 16.
This morning, Wednesday April 16th, a pro-life “Cemetery of the Innocents” was torn down and thrown in the trash at the University of Washington. Although the event was approved at the very last minute by the school administration, students set-up the flags in their approved, high-traffic area to memorialize the victims of abortion. The pro-life group on campus, “Students for Human Life” hosted the display.
After leaving the display for a brief period of time the students came back to the whole display completely missing – most flags and other display materials thrown in the trash can.
Instead of giving up, the students went through the trash can, salvaged what they could and put up the display as soon as possible.
Although the perpetrators of this crime have yet to be identified, the group will go on with their display and turning in a report to the campus police.
Friday, April 25, 2014
We can watch the wind almost live. Some artists take the live US-wide wind data and plot the wind direction and speed on a map of the US. And they show the speed by animating it. It is simple, but powerful.
It is almost live because they get the data once per hour. That’s good enough.
Watch live at Hint.fm.
Learn more about who did the work and how, also at Hint.fm.
Image from Hint.fm. It is a snap shot. The live map is animated.
The United Nations elected Iran for membership on its Commission on Status of Women. Link Iran’s treatment of women is abysmal.
Meanwhile the taxpayers of the US are paying the bills at the UN. In 2010 the US paid $7.7 billion. A little here & a little there adds up. We are paying $8 a year for the people to sponsor Iran in its mistreatment of women. Human Rights Voices
Spring hiking east of the Cascades: The hikes featured are around Spokane and the far-east part of Washington. But at the end is a list of other highlight areas mostly closer.
The far east:
• Mount Spokane State Park
• Riverside State Park in Spokane - the Bowl and Pitcher area
• Riverside State Park - the Ninemile area - Deep Creek Canyon to the Pine Bluffs
• Spokane - South Hill Bluffs
• Whitman County’s Kamiak Butte east of Colfax
• BLM’s Escure Ranch area south of Sprague, Lincoln County
• North Fork Asotin Creek in the Asotin Creek State Wildlife Recreation Area south of Asotin.
• Coeur d’Alene, Idaho - Tubbs Hill from the Coeur d’Alene Resort and Mineral Ridge out of Wolf Lodge Bay.
Closer to Seattle:
• Steamboat Rock and Northrup Canyon in Steamboat Rock State Park.
• Ancient Lakes in the Quincy State Wildlife Recreation Area near Quincy.
• Yakima Skyline Trail in the L.T. Murray State Wildlife Recreation Area near Yakima.
• Lake Chelan Shoreline Trail in the Lake Chelan National Recreation Area.
Thursday, April 24, 2014
Welshman Gareth Jones got off a train in the hinterland and saw first-hand the starvation of 1932-33 in Ukraine. Stalin intentionally starved the peasants of Ukraine because they raised their own food and expected some independence. He couldn’t allow anyone to be not under his thumb, so he killed them. Farmers had to hand over their production to the point they starved.
Sadly, Jones was killed in Manchuria two years later at age 30 before he wrote more than a few news articles. Most of what he found lay in the archive of his notes until a few years ago. See GarethJones.org
There is a recent book on Jones and his work: Gareth Jones: Eyewitness to the Holodomor, by Ray Gamache. Amazon (Holomodor is what the Ukrainians call it - “to kill by hunger.”)
Robert Conquest - The Harvest of Sorrows, 1986. He describes how Jones’s honest reporting was trashed not only by the Soviets, but also by Western journalists in Moscow.
Sally J Taylor - Stalin’s Apologist, 1990. This is a biography of Walter Duranty of the New York Times. Duranty shamelessly defended Stalin. And he also trashed Jones; that his claims of famine were exaggeration or worse. Whatever that is.
Shamefully Duranty received a Pulitzer Prize for his work for Stalin and, even after his work has been exposed as false and prostituting for mass killer Stalin, the NY Times has never renounced his work and the Pulitzer Prize has not been withdrawn.
Andrew Stuttaford at Weekly Standard.
Do the DC bureaucrats sit around thinking up the most absurd damage they can cause?
Obama’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) subjects applicants for employment to a credit check for most of its positions.
EEOC Chair Jacqueline A Berrien sued Kaplan Higher Ed Corp. for doing the same thing. Sued for the same practice the EEOC does!? Yes.
The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals threw EEOC’s case out of court by a unanimous opinion of three judges. With the following wording (enjoy!):
In this case the EEOC sued the defendants for using the same type of background check that the EEOC itself uses. The EEOC’s personnel handbook recites that “[o]verdue just debts increase temptation to commit illegal or unethical acts as a means of gaining funds to meet financial obligations.” Because of that concern, the EEOC runs credit checks on applicants for 84 of the agency’s 97 positions. The defendants (collectively, “Kaplan”) have the same concern; and thus Kaplan runs credit checks on applicants for positions that provide access to students’ financial-loan information, among other positions. For that practice, the EEOC sued Kaplan.
EEOC saw some sort of conspiracy to exclude certain racial groups by doing credit checks. Did Kaplan collect race or gender? No. They didn’t know the race or gender of the people rejected. And they used a data collection method never before seen on Earth.
Does Chair Berrien and her EEOC bureaucrats think they are above the law?
Wednesday, April 23, 2014
On a drive across the state on a winter day long ago I was stunned by the quiet beauty of a place I hadn’t heard of. Moses Coulee. The high plateau between the Columbia River on the west and Coulee City to the east US Highway 2 drops about 600 feet into a broad canyon, which is Moses Coulee. It’s quiet beauty was enhanced by a layer of snow and the fact that I had been living on the East Coast for three and a half years.
It is just west of Grand Coulee and one of my very favorite places, Dry Falls, which is hundreds of feet high and miles wide and was formed in about two days when the ice dam forming a lake in Montana broke at the end of the last ice age.
Ron Judd in the Seattle Times describes the physical location and some on its geography. And they talk about the people who lived there, included Chief Moses, until today. Sadly, one of the biggest draws of people to the area, Jameson Lake, has an algae bloom that prevents a good fishery. (The experts don’t know what is causing the problem.)
Monday, April 21, 2014
Interesting geography and human development - at Atlas Obscura.
For example: Places that are obscured on Google Earth. Google does obscure places at the request of governments. Some places seem obvious, others not, but we seldom learn why. Atlas Obscura
- “The Dark Lord” - strange places: three places that have been on fire for decades (coal or natural gas), what appears to be a “blood falls” in Antarctica, a totally black cathedral and some very strange places. Atlas Obscura
And more: Atlas Obscura
Why the stampede to increase the nation’s highest state minimum wage? in Seattle the rush is for minimum wage of $15 now. Now!
The big guys can move things and flex, but how about the small businesses?
is a new organization to slow or stop the stampede and allow all the effects to be looked at.
Sunday, April 20, 2014
The Sunday morning Jesus rose from the dead his followers were frightened, confused and dismayed. When the Marys went to the tomb to place fragrances on his body, they discovered the stone rolled away and Jesus’ body missing. They ran to tell the disciples who raced to see what had happened with Peter and John leading the way.
A remarkable painting captures both the speed of Peter and John and their emotions.
“The Disciples Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre on the Morning of the Resurrection” by Eugène Burnand is in Musee de Orsay in Paris. I don’t recall seeing it before, but it certainly is remarkable.
Via Crisis Magazine
Friday, April 18, 2014
We keep hearing about the decline of Christianity, but that’s the myopic view from the US-Europe elite. What appears to be decline is instead the relocation of Christianity, not a decline.
In Asia and Sub-Sahara Africa it is booming.
… According to a June 2013 report by the Center for the Study of Global Christianity, the countries with the largest increase in Christian populations are currently Nepal, China, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. The list also includes some of Africa's poorest nations: Benin, Burika Faso, South Sudan, and Mali. No European countries made the list.
A 2013 Pew Research Center study corroborates this shift, noting that Europe and the Americas, which once housed 93% of the world's Christians, account for only 63% today. Sub-Saharan Africa's Christian population rose from 9% to 63% in the century between 1910-2010. Meanwhile, a different Pew study puts countries like China, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Ethiopia on the list of most Christian-populated nations. In Malaysia, where Islam dominates both culture and politics, Christians are making inroads at the top of their political tickets.
The statistics alone do not show this steadily louder presence of Christians in foreign lands, however. Unfortunately, conflict among those who practice native faiths and growing numbers of Christians has become a staple in some parts of the globe. A study from the Center for the Study of Global Christianity in the United States released this year suggested that about 100,000 Christians have been killed every year for the past decade as a result of their faith. ...
The image is of "Moses the Ethiopian" at Action Institute.
Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Nanny Michael Bloomberg has earned his way to Heaven. If you don't think so, then ask him.
He outlawed smoking in bars, ended legal transfats in food - but only certain ones - and tried and failed to limit the size of sugary drinks. He also repealed New York City's term limits law, because the people of NYC couldn't survive w/o Him. This is one bold leader.
But his highest calling is to take away your 2d Amendment right to fire arms. And He is still on the job. If guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns. Criminals don't care about laws. Duh. I want to ask Him about the two Colorado state senators who were recalled from office because they got one of His gun-control laws passed. Why didn't His big money save them? My answer - because Colorado voters can make their own decisions. They don't need Him to make them, unlike the proud people of NYC.
Bloomberg announced this week that He will go straight to Heaven - no questions asked - because of His good works. He has never shown one gram of humor, so I am sure He is dead serious.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Obama's Census Bureau is changing how health care data is collected. To improve what? Bad guess. Let's guess why Obama's team is making this change after we discuss the results. The changes are so large that it will not be possible to compare 2013 to 2015. And - surprise - the new method will show fewer without insurance, said Brett J. O’Hara, chief of the health statistics branch.
It will not possible to compare how many are uninsured before Obamacare to after.
Would anyone guess that Obama's Census bureau is making this change this year to make President Obama look good? Would anyone NOT think so?
Washington State Lands Commissioner Goldmark does not meet even the standards of politicians.
As he campaigned in 2008 to become Washington state’s top logging regulator, Peter Goldmark attacked his opponent for a “reprehensible” conflict of interest — accepting money from timber harvesters while allowing them to conduct clear-cuts in landslide-prone areas.
Goldmark pledged that he was the candidate to do away with backroom deals and restore trust to the office.
“I will not accept money from the industries that I’ll be regulating,” the Democrat said at a public forum in Gig Harbor that year, during his successful campaign to unseat Republican Doug Sutherland, the incumbent commissioner of public lands.
His vow didn’t last.
Over the past three years, Goldmark has accepted about $100,000 in campaign contributions from timber and wood-product companies — 20 percent of the money he’s collected over that time, according to a Seattle Times analysis.
For example, Weyerhaeuser, which Goldmark cast as a villain during his 2008 campaign, is among the donors.
Goldmark said he didn’t sustain the pledge because he’s not influenced by the money.
If he is not influenced by money he will return the $100,000.
Monday, April 14, 2014
Saturday, April 12, 2014
We are very interested in Anacortes. It is beautiful and surrounded by water. There is a lot of marine activity - WS ferries to the San Juan Islands, two or more repair facilities and six marinas with lots of boats. It is a peninsula, so it has a lot of waterfront. And it has over four square miles of forests plus one very large park - Washington Park - which is also a peninsula of bedrock with lots of views on high points.
I am gathering the best resources I find in this post for future reference. Resources for a hiker, beach walker and casual bike rider - like me - who is always exploring new places.
People’s Guide to Anacortes. Map that marks all sorts of activity locations from beaches, hikes and view points to softball fields and historic sights.
Anacortes Magazine for events and news.
Tommy Thompson Trail - From the SE part of the center city follows the water south, then across a great trestle bridge to March Point. We have seen harbor seals up close on a foggy day on this bridge. The link is a commercial (pay) map site.
Guemes Channel Trail - will traverse the north shoreline from Tommy Thompson trail several miles to Washington Park on the west.
Graphic: Anacortes showing the Guemes Channel Trail across the top (north) and Tommy Thompson Trail on the right (east). Highway 20 entering town is on the lower right and Washington State Ferry terminal is on the north side of the left protuberance.
Distinguished Secretary of State John Kerry has dreams of a Nobel Peace Prize. If only the Israelis would cave and allow their country to be cut up until its existence is on the edge. That’s what Mahmoud Abbas needs - he can’t even agree that Israel has the right to exist.
It is now reported that John Kerry’s team is planting stories to poison the process against Israel. They are in his way with their desire to stay alive. Don’t they know who he is?
… Multiple sources told the Washington Free Beacon that top Obama administration officials have worked for the past several days to manufacture a crisis over the reissuing of housing permits in a Jerusalem neighborhood widely acknowledged as Israeli territory.
Senior State Department officials based in Israel have sought to lay the groundwork for Israel to take the blame for talks collapsing by peddling a narrative to the Israeli press claiming that the Palestinians were outraged over Israeli settlements, the Free Beacon has learned.
These administration officials have planted several stories in Israeli and U.S. newspapers blaming Israel for the collapse of peace talks and have additionally provided reporters with anonymous quotes slamming the Israeli government.
The primary source of these multiple reports has been identified as Middle East envoy Martin Indyk and his staff, according to these insiders, who said that the secret media campaign against Israel paved the way for Secretary of State John Kerry to go before Congress on Tuesday and publicly blame Israel for tanking the talks.
“The Palestinians didn’t even know they were supposed to be abandoning negotiations because of these housing permits, which are actually old, reissued permits
John Podhoretz at NY Post
… These talks mean nothing to them; they’ve done nothing to advance negotiations in all these months. They’ve moved on nothing, agreed to nothing, made no goodwill gestures toward Israel or the United States.
And Kerry? He’s basically fine with this. He’s full of understanding. He understands it would be difficult for Mahmoud Abbas to acknowledge Israel as a “Jewish state,” so he doesn’t act as though Abbas’ refusal to do so says anything about Abbas’ viability as a negotiating partner.
Abbas’ recalcitrance should’ve told John Kerry everything he needed to know.
But Kerry doesn’t want to know. What he wants is a Nobel Peace Prize he’s never going to get.
That’s why he started this ludicrous process in the first place — to secure himself a consolation trophy after his humiliating defeat at the hands of George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential race.
Now, here is John Kerry’s monument: By whoring after a deal he couldn’t get to satisfy his own wounded pride and fulfill his own vainglorious wants, he has been exposed for all to see as a deceitful, pompous, self-righteous and vindictive fool — not to mention a world-historical two-time loser.
Friday, April 11, 2014
Gov. Cuomo of New York (D) had a study done on the reputed dangers of fracking. About five years ago. Then his health commissioner Nirav Shah delayed releasing the results - again and again. He said in January, 2013, that the report would be released within weeks. 65 weeks later it is still not available. Democrat & Chronicle
A leaked copy of the New York report says fracking is safe and will not contaminate ground water. New York Times (registration required)
ALBANY — The state’s Health Department found in an analysis it prepared early last year that the much-debated drilling technology known as hydrofracking could be conducted safely in New York, according to a copy obtained by The New York Times from an expert who did not believe it should be kept secret.
The analysis and other health assessments have been closely guarded by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and his administration as the governor weighs whether to approve fracking. Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, has long delayed making a decision, unnerved in part by strident opposition on his party’s left. A plan to allow a limited amount of fracking in the state’s Southern Tier along the Pennsylvania border is still seen as the most likely outcome, should the drilling process receive final approval.
The eight-page analysis is a summary of previous research by the state and others, and concludes that fracking can be done safely. It delves into the potential impact of fracking on water resources, on naturally occurring radiological material found in the ground, on air emissions and on “potential socioeconomic and quality-of-life impacts.”
Pennsylvania investigated a specific claim franking contaminated water wells in Franklin Township and found the contamination existed, but fracking was not to blame. Breitbart
Obama’s EPA is being very slow on its study. You can read the draft at EPA.
Coffee drinkers get less liver cancer. Every little bit helps.
Researchers at University of Southern California followed people over 18 years and found that daily coffee drinkers were less likely to develop hepatocellular carcinoma, or HCC, which is the most common form of liver cancer. Moderation is OK, but heavy drinkers did even better!
Compared with people who drank no more than six cups of coffee per week, those who drank one to three cups per day were 29% less likely to HCC. Serious coffee drinkers -- those who downed four or more cups per day -- were 42% less likely to be diagnosed with the disease.
Four cups a day. Yes!
More good news:
Better heart health also. Actually it is better blood circulation through the tiny capillaries. But don’t try this with decaf; it is the caffeine that makes the difference. LA Times
Graphic: source forgotten
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Somali-born Ayaan Hirsi Ali has been excluded by the campus speech police at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass, near Boston. She was a member of the Dutch Parliament for four yeas. But she, a Muslim woman, spoke out against the anti-woman policies and actions of Muslims. She was chased out of the country and came to the US. She continues to bravely speak out.
A Brandeis spokesman praised her while announcing the intended honorary degree for her was being withdrawn.
"She is a compelling public figure and advocate for women's rights, and we respect and appreciate her work to protect and defend the rights of women and girls throughout the world," said the university's statement.
Talk is cheap. The university won’t face up to the Muslim speech police.
KTTH radio is hosting a debate on pay inequality and $15 an hour minimum wage Wednesday, April 9. Their Ben Shapiro will debate Seattle City Member Kshama Sawant. The sold tickets for the event and sold out in short time. I can’t find a web page describing the event, but David Boze on KTTH radio says they will live stream the event.
To listen live, at 7 PM go to KTTH. Then select “Listen LIVE” on the upper right of the home page.
The US Senate’s number two Democrat Dick Durban pays women on his staff $11,105 less than men. At the same time he is leading the Democratics’ claim that Republicans have a war on women.
The Senate’s number four Democrat Patty Murray of Washington paid her female staff $21,000 less in 2011. But she is making the same claims. Uhh… Senator Murray? Why why are you pointing at other people instead of yourself?
Sound Politics in 2012.
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Obama’s Veterans Administration (VA) heath care system is paying $200 million for wrongful deaths (nearly 1,000 of them).
At the same time Obama is paying VA employees bonuses. One manager who overseas 6 deaths due to Legionnaires’ disease at the VA hospital in Pittsburgh collected a $63,000 bonus and retired.
Why are those causing the deaths not held accountable? Because the taxpayers are suckers and pay for both sides. We pay the damages while paying bonuses for those who caused the damages.
Sunday, April 06, 2014
Seattle celebrates its large and varied maritimes industry(ies) May 10 & 11. Actually there are events throughout April and May, 2014.
The iconic tugboat races will be on Saturday, May 10 along the Seattle Waterfront.
Overview at Seattle Propeller Club.
More at Northwest Seaport.
Friday, April 04, 2014
Jimmy Fallon observed Tuesday night that the number of signups for Obamacare that President Obama is bragging about wasn’t that hard. Daily Caller:
“The White House says it has surpassed its goal for people enrolled in Obamacare. It’s amazing what you can achieve when you make something mandatory and fine people if they don’t do it and then keep extending the deadline for months,” Fallon quipped. “It’s like a Cinderella story. It’s just a beautiful thing. You make everyone do it.”
Fallon forgot one more important piece. Obama has $700 million to promote it - dog memes, cat gifs and $10 million for cartoon ads. Washington Free Beacon
An iconic 26-foot statue of Marilyn Monroe is being dismantled to leave Palm Springs. And almost everyone is glad.
Looking at it you might be able to guess why. Why are people walking under it?
Thursday, April 03, 2014
Washington honored 3 servicemen who received the Medal of Honor for heroism in battle.
Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Petry, Staff Sgt. Ty Michael Carter and Capt. William Swenson all received the nation’s highest military honor for risking life in combat, in the Afghanistan war.