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Jack Burton

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Member since: Sun May 18, 2014, 11:44 PM
Number of posts: 14,194

Journal Archives

first annual Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest

http://www.breitbart.com/texas/2015/05/01/pamela-gellers-inaugural-10000-muhammad-art-exhibit-and-contest-in-dallas-may-3/
PAMELA GELLER’S INAUGURAL $10,000 MUHAMMAD ART EXHIBIT AND CONTEST IN DALLAS, MAY 3
The first annual Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest will be held on Sunday, May 3, at the Curtis Culwell Center, 5-7 pm, in the Dallas suburb of Garland, Texas. It will be hosted by human rights and free-speech activist Pamela Geller and her organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI). The exhibit will feature images of Islam’s prophet in both historical and contemporary settings, showcasing the top 200 artistic renditions that were submitted for consideration. The winner will be announced at the event, and a $10,000 prize will be awarded.

The keynote speaker will be Geert Wilders, a member of The Netherlands Parliament. Wilders led the fight for de-Islamization in his country, which has faced many of the same problems with Muslim assimilation as have other European countries, including the advent of controversial “no-go zones” inaccessible to non-Muslims, including public officials.

Geller recently wrote about the winning People’s Choice Muhammad cartoon (pictured) for Breitbart News, and how it “best illustrates the reason why we are having this contest and art exhibit to begin with.” “We draw Muhammad because we are free,” she explained. “We draw Muhammad because our unalienable rights are enshrined in the First Amendment. The freedom of speech is the First Amendment — not the fifth or the eighth or the tenth. The first — and that’s for an important reason: it is the cornerstone of all our other freedoms.” “We choose freedom, which is why we are holding our free speech event in the same venue, in the same city and state as the Muslim sharia event. Freedom lovers must stand up for free speech and not submit to savagery, supremism and tyranny, now..”

California Obamacare going bankrupt

http://www.ocregister.com/articles/california-658869-covered-state.html
Red ink could kill Covered California
After two previous extensions, the open enrollment period for Covered California ends April 30. That deadline just might prove to be the tipping point for the state’s two-year-old health insurance exchange.

That’s because this is the year Covered California is supposed to become completely self-sustaining.

Indeed, there’s no more money coming from Washington after the state exhausts the $1.1 billion it received from the federal government to get the Obamacare exchange up and running. And state law prohibits Sacramento from spending any money to keep the exchange afloat.

That presents an existential crisis for Covered California, which is facing a nearly $80 million budget deficit for its 2015-16 fiscal year. Although the exchange is setting aside $200 million to cover its near-term deficit, Covered California Executive Director Peter Lee acknowledged in December that there are questions about the “long-term sustainability of the organization.”

The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money.

Have you ever noticed how

the Democratic Party and the Communist Party USA are aligned on most every issue? In celebration of May Day everyone should visit the CPUSA website.

http://www.cpusa.org/articles/

http://www.cpusa.org/convention-discussion-the-communist-party-the-road-ahead-2/
The Communist Party & the road ahead
As we enter 2014 and the 30th national convention of the Communist Party, we should be asking ourselves the important questions. Has the working class gained significant ground in the democratic struggle against the far-right agenda? How has the playing field changed post Occupy? Are we seeing a resurgence of militant working class struggle? What does this mean for the Communist Party? Has the working class gained significant ground in the democratic struggle against the far right agenda?

The answer to this question is far too complex to be answered simply. Struggles for immigrants rights, LGBTQ equality, for higher wages and democratic representation have all taken place. But the struggle isn't one-sided, reactionary representatives of the transnationals have not ceased in their attacks on the gains and democratic rights of the American people. Supreme Court attacks on the Voting Rights Act, failure to extend unemployment benefits, drastic billion dollar cuts to the food stamps and other social welfare programs, Supreme Court deregulation of campaign finance, etc... All of these attacks on working and oppressed Americans have taken place without real and lasting opposition. Much has been lost, but the attacks have spurred a militant resistance and given birth to struggle on a scale not seen in this country in decades.

How has the playing field changed post Occupy?

Just a few years ago an explosion of working class struggle took place on a scale not seen in decades. Taking place under the banner of a massive social movement known collectively as Occupy, the movement brought hundreds of thousand into struggle. Oppressed nationalities, immigrants, low wage workers, the bread & butter of the American working class launched a full scale resistance to the right-wing agenda. They popularized the class struggle with a call for the struggle of the 99% against the 1% and the corporate right-wing agenda. Unfortunately, the movement ultimately failed to offer a solid critique of the capitalist system, an electoral challenge to the far-right agenda, and the leadership required for concrete social change. As a result it dissipated, leaving the masses without leadership. Despite the failures of the Occupy movement, it will have an everlasting effect on American politics. It represents a left turn for many working Americans, a resurgence of working class militancy, and a new willingness for struggle outside of the normal channels.

Change in Baltimore needs to start with failed liberal Democrat policies

http://www.breitbart.com/video/2015/04/29/clarke-change-in-baltimore-should-start-with-failed-liberal-democrat-policies/
CLARKE: CHANGE IN BALTIMORE SHOULD START WITH ‘FAILED LIBERAL DEMOCRAT POLICIES’
Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke (D) blasted “failed liberal government policies” for miring people in cities like Baltimore in “generational poverty” and argued that change in Baltimore “needs to start in the politics, the failed liberal Democrat policies” on Wednesday’s “Hannity” on the Fox News Channel.

Clarke declared, “with him making that statement about this Congress won’t enact any of his policies, you know, good for them. Because all these failed liberal government policies have done is mired black people in generational poverty, kept their kids in failing schools, chronically unemployed, they can’t find meaningful work, having to live in crime-infested neighborhoods, all under — by the way, I continue to hear the president talk about the economic recovery. Tell that to the people of Baltimore. Tell that to the people in the American ghettos who can’t find work, whose kids have to attend failing schools, who are living in poverty, tell that to them that there’s been — this wonderful economic recovery because they’ve been left behind, Sean.”

The Global Immigration Crisis Is Changing the Face of Europe

http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Columns/2015/04/27/Global-Immigration-Crisis-Changing-Face-Europe
Look at this up close, as E.U. leaders did at a summit in Brussels Thursday, and you see a need to police the Mediterranean more effectively, bring order to the Libyan ports from which many migrants set out, and bust the traffickers. We need to see this from, say, halfway to the moon looking down. Then it’s perfectly clear: Europe’s North Africa problem is the United States’ Central American and Mexican problem. Illegal immigration, south to north, is a global crisis.

Among Sir Paul’s concerns is anti-immigrant backlash—“a real and present danger of overt hostility of majority populations towards the minorities established in the E.U.,” as he puts it. “If illegal immigration is to be tackled effectively, the incentives for it must be reduced,” he explains. “The only way to do this is to delink the control of illegality from the reduction in overall immigration. By introducing a balanced package of measures, Europe could make its controls against illegal immigration effective while being more welcoming to legitimate migrants. Toughness against illegality must be balanced by generosity.”

O.K., but if we’re truly going to own this crisis, we have to recognize the huge incentives at work in the countries from which migrants flee. And here I return to an argument made after the Charlie Hebdo shootings in Paris last January.

The continued Balkinazation of the U.S.

Nothing says 'unity, peace, and harmony' like not being able to talk to one another. But it is politically correct.

http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/lifestyle/2015/04/26/kansas-school-district-copes-increased-ethnic-diversity-from-influx-immigrants/
Kansas school district copes increased ethnic diversity from influx of immigrants, refugees
WICHITA, KAN. (AP) – The Wichita school district, which already has one of the most ethnically diverse student bodies in the state, is trying to respond to the challenges presented by an influx of non-native English speaking children from Latin America, the Middle East and Africa.

The district has more than 350 students from other countries and 160 from other U.S. states who speak minimal English. Currently, 81 languages are spoken in the district, The Wichita Eaglereported. It has 11 classrooms spread throughout the district devoted to teaching recent immigrants and refugees.

Gun Restrictions Have Always Bred Defiance, Black Markets

A fairly long article detailing how gun registration and lack of compliance is common throughout the world. It seems the pathetic 15% compliance rate in Connecticut at gun registration is quite typical. The message to gun grabbers is quite simple-----you ain't gonna get 'em.

http://reason.com/archives/2012/12/22/gun-restrictions-have-always-bred-defian/print
For reasons of their own, most people, in many countries, defy anti-gun laws
But plenty of New Yorkers have chosen to own guns outside the official system. In a city that, as I write, has roughly 37,000 licensed handgun owners and about 21,000 rifle and shotgun licenses, the running guesstimate of illegal firearms stands at two million, give or take a bit. That’s the number the U.S. Department of Justice has used in its official publications in recent years. Basically, far more guns are owned illegally within the boundaries of New York City than are held legally. Government officials wanted tight restrictions on firearms, and they got them—but that doesn’t seem to have deterred many people from owning the things.

In fact, New York City’s situation with guns is mirrored in Europe, where countries with tight restrictions also find themselves awash in illegal firearms without any clear parallels for the relatively liberal laws of Virginia or South Carolina to blame. According to the Small Arms Survey (PDF) at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland: Contrary to widely-accepted national myths, public gun ownership is commonplace in most European states. It may appear to some outside observers—especially Americans—that Europeans have blindly surrendered their gun rights (Heston, 2002). The reality is that the citizens of most European countries are better armed than they realize. ...

?h=513&w=540

While the 2003 Small Arms Survey report put the number of legal guns in Greece at 805,000 and illegal guns at 350,000, just two years later, the Greek government itself nudged those figures up, just a tad, to one million legal guns and 1.5 million illegal ones. So New Yorkers aren’t alone in being armed to the teeth outside the law.

Dr. Csaszar estimates compliance with Australia’s 1996 ban on self-loading rifles and pump-action shotguns at 20 percent. The Australian Shooters Journal did its own math in a 1997 article on the “gun buyback.” Researchers for the publication pointed out that the Australian government’s own low-ball, pre-ban estimate of the number of prohibited weapons in the country yielded a compliance rate of 19 percent.

California drought is perfectly natural

No doubt the drought sucks and will have tremendous economic impact. But there is no global warming boogiemanbearpig to blame here...except in the minds of doomers suffering from confirmation bias.

http://www.onearth.org/earthwire/what-mega-drought-would-look-and-taste-california
California has been dreaming—at least when it comes to water. The state has built a massive system of dams, canals, and pumping stations to store and transfer water, all based on the assumption that the wet conditions of the past 150 years are the norm. Oops.

The severe dry spell gripping the state for the last three years is nothing new. Geological records and tree-ring data reveal that over the past few thousand years, California experienced two droughts lasting between 120 and 200 years. As dire as the current situation is (taps at hundreds of households have run dry), it hasn’t reached mega-drought proportions yet; it’d have to persist for at least a decade to attain that ominous status.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/weather/2014/09/02/california-megadrought/14446195/
California is in the third year of one of the state's worst droughts in the past century, one that's led to fierce wildfires, water shortages and restrictions, and potentially staggering agricultural losses. The dryness in California is only part of a longer-term, 15-year drought across most of the Western USA, one that bioclimatologist Park Williams said is notable because "more area in the West has persistently been in drought during the past 15 years than in any other 15-year period since the 1150s and 1160s" — that's more than 850 years ago.

Megadroughts are what Cornell University scientist Toby Ault calls the "great white sharks of climate: powerful, dangerous and hard to detect before it's too late. They have happened in the past, and they are still out there, lurking in what is possible for the future, even without climate change." Ault goes so far as to call megadroughts "a threat to civilization."

Megadroughts have parched the West, including present-day California, long before Europeans settled the region in the 1800s. Most of the USA's droughts of the past century, even the infamous 1930s Dust Bowl that forced migrations of Oklahomans and others from the Plains, "were exceeded in severity and duration multiple times by droughts during the preceding 2,000 years," the National Climate Assessment reported this year.

Overall, "the nature of the beast is that drought is cyclical, and these long periods of drought have been commonplace in the past," according to Mark Svoboda, a climatologist at the National Drought Mitigation Center in Lincoln, Neb. "We are simply much more vulnerable today than at any time in the past. People can't just pick up and leave to the degree they did in the past."

http://www.mercurynews.com/science/ci_24993601/california-drought-past-dry-periods-have-lasted-more
California drought: Past dry periods have lasted more than 200 years, scientists say
California's current drought is being billed as the driest period in the state's recorded rainfall history. But scientists who study the West's long-term climate patterns say the state has been parched for much longer stretches before that 163-year historical period began.

Through studies of tree rings, sediment and other natural evidence, researchers have documented multiple droughts in California that lasted 10 or 20 years in a row during the past 1,000 years -- compared to the mere three-year duration of the current dry spell. The two most severe megadroughts make the Dust Bowl of the 1930s look tame: a 240-year-long drought that started in 850 and, 50 years after the conclusion of that one, another that stretched at least 180 years.

Not As Stupid As They Think

http://www.climatechangedispatch.com/not-as-stupid-as-they-think.html
Late last year, the name Jonathan Gruber became part of the public consciousness for his newly public declarations that Obamacare passed due to the “stupidity of the American voter.” While there are many cases one can cite affirming that most Americans don’t closely follow politics and/or the political process and, therefore, may be called “stupid,” the campaign to sell the manmade climate change crisis narrative proves otherwise.

We are smarter than they think. We are not buying what they are selling.

Global warming has been the most expensive and extensive “public relations campaign in history”—as David Harsanyi calls it in his post at TheFederalist.com. He identifies the “25 years of political and cultural pressure,” as including “most governmental agencies, a long list of welfare-sucking corporations, the public school system, the universities, an infinite parade of celebrities, think tanks, well-funded environmental groups and an entire major political party.” Yet, despite all the “gentle nudging,” “stern warnings,” and “fear mongering,” Harsanyi states: “Since 1989, there’s been no significant change in the public’s concern level over global warming.”

Clearly, Americans aren’t that stupid after all. We can smell a rat.

It isn’t that we don’t believe the climate changes—it does, has, and always will—but, as Harsanyi states: “there is a difference in believing climate change is real and believing that climate change is calamitous.” He continues: “as the shrieking gets louder, Americans become more positive about the quality of their environment and less concerned about the threats.” And: “as the fear-mongering becomes more far-fetched, the accusations become more hysterical, and the deadlines for action keep being pushed right over the horizon, fewer people seem to really care.”

Another dumb climate psychology paper

https://ipccreport.wordpress.com/2015/02/03/another-dumb-climate-psychology-paper/
A paper Public division about climate change rooted in conflicting socio-political identities was published yesterday in Nature Climate Change. The six authors, Bliuc et al, come from Social Science and Psychology departments in Australia. There is also an associated News & Views article by Tom Postmes, Psychology: Climate change and group dynamics. The paper is truly awful, in so many ways, and effectively illustrates the blinkered thinking that is endemic in the field, nicely summarised by Andy West in his recent post at Climate etc. The following paragraphs raise some of the problems with the paper.

It starts badly, with unquestioning assertion of the Cook et al 97% consensus paper. As usual this is stated in an unclear way, “97% agree that climate change is caused by humans” (what, some of it? Most of it? All of it?), a feature that Ben Pile refers to as consensus without an object. Then the paper simply declares that “The public is divided between climate change ‘believers’ (whose views align with those of the scientific community) and ‘sceptics’ (whose views are in disagreement with those of the scientific community)”

One of the issues they asked ‘sceptics’ and ‘believers’ about is their “anger at the opposing group”. The numbers came out (on some scale) at 2.84 for sceptics, but 4.10 for believers. We’ve seen recently several examples of the obscene vitriol directed towards even those who are moderately sceptical about climate change. But the way this data is reported by Bliuc et al is astounding: “We note, in particular, that part of the sceptic group consciousness is anger at climate change believers”. The smaller number (sceptic anger at believers) is highlighted, while the considerably larger number (believer anger towards sceptics) is ignored.

One of the issues they asked ‘sceptics’ and ‘believers’ about is their “anger at the opposing group”. The numbers came out (on some scale) at 2.84 for sceptics, but 4.10 for believers. We’ve seen recently several examples of the obscene vitriol directed towards even those who are moderately sceptical about climate change. “We note, in particular, that part of the sceptic group consciousness is anger at climate change believers”. The smaller number (sceptic anger at believers) is highlighted, while the considerably larger number (believer anger towards sceptics) is ignored.

In summary, we have a biased paper promoting political activism, exacerbating division and with a main conclusion that has already been stated many times in the literature. How did this rubbish get published? Oh, it’s in Nature.
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