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It seems Pope Francis needs to brush up on his Tertullian!

It has been reported (in The ChristLast Media, I must note) that the current Pope does not like the phrase "lead us not into temptation...

"Let no freedom be allowed to novelty, because it is not fitting that any addition should be made to antiquity. Let not the clear faith and belief of our forefathers be fouled by any muddy admixture." -- Pope Sixtus III

Friday, December 29, 2006


February 4, 2007 is International Save Pluto Day!

(All emphasis below is mine.)

The minions of Philly's AmericaLast media monopoly mock poor Pluto while it's down, but they will rue this day.

Up the counter-revolution!

Philadelphia Daily News: Earth to solar system: Party with the Arkestra
As we celebrate yet another trip around the sun, it's easy to forget that our humble orb isn't the only one making that journey. While the other seven planets (sorry, Pluto) take more or less time than our 365 days, they all have to hit the New Year sometime, so why not celebrate Earth's holiday on several spheres at once with the only intergalactic big band in this region of the cosmos, the Sun Ra Arkestra?

This is the Marshall Allen-led Arkestra's second year running out the calendar at the Ethical Society, where a "Planetary Buffet" and a bit of earthbound midnight bubbly are included in the price of admission.

If you've never heard "Space Is the Place" segue into "Auld Lang Syne" while a line of sequin-robed horn players marches through the audience, then you have yet to truly enjoy all our universe has to offer.

Philadelphia Ethical Society, 1906 S. Rittenhouse Square
8 p.m. Sunday - $45

Meanwhile, Pluto's humiliation has entered the lexicon of Brazil's political elite...

NASDAQ: UPDATE:Brazil Kawall Resigns Amid Doubts Over Fiscal Path by Gerald Jeffris - Dow Jones Newswires

BRASILIA - Brazilian Treasury Secretary Carlos Kawall resigned from his post Friday citing personal reasons, the Finance Ministry said.

Kawall will be replaced, on a temporary basis, by Tarcisio Jose Massote de Godoy, a career civil servant.

In his letter of resignation to Finance Minister Guido Mantega, Kawall explicitly denied any disagreement over policy and expressed confidence in the future management of th country's economic policy.

"I want to publicly reaffirm my support for the management of the government's economic policy, and, in particular, its fiscal and public debt policy, which should contribute so that our risk rating continues to improve, and inevitably leads us, within the horizon of the upcoming administration, to achieving investment grade," Kawall said.

Kawall came to the post after working as chief economist in Brazil for Citigroup (C), and later working as a director at Brazil's National Development Bank, or BNDES.

Market participants praised the outgoing secretary's performance during his tenure.

"Kawall was doing an effective job at stretching out the debt profile and reducing the percentage of floating-rate paper," said Alex Agostini, economist at Austin Ratings in Sao Paulo.

Brazil's floating-rate debt declined to 41.38% of total domestic debt in November from 49.55% April after Kawall took his post, while the share of fixed- rate debt rose to 35.16% from 27.61%.

Meanwhile, the average maturity of federal bonds rose through November to 30.96 months from 29.64 months in April, and the volume of debt coming due in 12 months fell to 34.9% from 40.3%.

The decision had little immediate impact on Brazilian asset prices as local markets were closed ahead of the New Year's holiday.

After the announcement, Brazil's benchmark Global 40 bond traded down 1/8 at 132 1/2 bid according to Reuters, while the country's debt spread was 1 basis point tighter at 191 points over U.S. Treasurys.

Some market participants said they believed the market could see a small reaction in the coming week, though expressed confidence the government would uphold positions backed by Kawall.

"This could prove to be a little speed bump for Brazilian assets when markets reopen next week," said Flavio Serrano, economist with Lopez Leon Brokerage in Sao Paulo. "However, I think the market will quickly realize that the government wants to maintain the approach taken by Kawall."

Still, some in the market were left doubting whether the secretary's exit could have resulted from internal divisions in the government.

"Although Kawall cites personal reasons, there is always margin for disagreement within the economic team," said a market analyst who asked to remain anonymous. "It seems Kawall may have disagreed with some of the trends in government policy."

Meanwhile, local political observers said the market had good reason to be wary, as the government has seen a steady attrition of fiscally conservative voices, including former Finance Minister Antonio Palocci and former Treasury Secretary Joaquim Levy, over recent years.

"Kawall's exit was mostly expected in the market because he took the post with a defined term of employment," noted Carlos Lopes, political analyst at the Brasilia-based Santa Fe Ideais political consultancy. "Still, it's not a very good sign because the government is losing yet another firm voice in favor of fiscal control."

Despite his denials of differences within the government ranks, Kawall had recently been a vocal critic of erosion in fiscal discipline.

At a congressional hearing in November, he openly criticized the country's high tax burden and current levels of public sector spending.

"The trajectory of rising spending above the expansion of the gross domestic product has been financed by the high tax burden," Kawall said, adding that if this trend continues "the future of Brazil will be the same as Pluto, which was excluded from the map."

And what would a year be without a year in review piece?

New Scientist: 2006: The year in astronomy
The year was one of things lost and found – with Pluto bidding farewell to its planet status and signs of recent liquid water discovered on Mars...

Ha! Pluto says choke on your red Martian dust, scientific community!

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First of all, the word is SEX, not GENDER. If you are ever tempted to use the word GENDER, don't. The word is SEX! SEX! SEX! SEX! For example: "My sex is male." is correct. "My gender is male." means nothing. Look it up. What kind of sick neo-Puritan nonsense is this? Idiot left-fascists, get your blood-soaked paws off the English language. Hence I am choosing "male" under protest.


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