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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, September 15, 2006

Fyodor's Pro Football Picks of the Week.

1) The guys who set the lines are professionals. Their job is to make each game look as attractive as possible to everyone. That way they even out the amount of money bet on each side.
Instant translation: The house wins no matter who wins. That's why people get into the gambling business.

2) I am just a fan. I won't even keep track of these picks week to week if it gets too embarrassing.

3) There is no such thing as "inside information". Especially in the pros.

4) If those idiot touts on tv and in the paper were any good, they wouldn't go public with their genius. They'd sit at Harrah's sports book from open to close and then go out and buy $2,000 an hour hookers who dress like high school girls.

5) Gambling is stupid. You cannot win.

That being said, here are my NFL picks for this week.

Sunday 9/17

Buffalo (+6) at Miami
I'm going with the Bills to keep it close. Take Buffalo and the points.
FINAL: Bills 16 Dolphins 6 - Fyodor wins! (A great start to the week. I feel confident in my prognosticating.)

Carolina (-1) at Minnesota
They're begging me to pick the Vikings. Take the Panthers to cover.
FINAL: Vikings 16 Panthers 13 - Fyodor loses! (What was Coach Fox thinking with that lateral on the punt return?)

Cleveland (+10.5) at Cincinnati
Do you know how big this number is for an NFL game? It is too big even for a team playing the Browns. Pick Cleveland.
FINAL: Bengals 34 Browns 17 - Fyodor loses! (What was I thinking?)

Detroit (+9) at Chicago
Detroit can't score and Chicago is overrated. Take the Bears because they'll win 10 - 0.
FINAL: Bears 34 Lions 7 - Fyodor wins! (What has gotten into Rex Grossman and will it stay? Amy, my favorite Bears fan, should not hold her breath.)

Houston (+13.5) at Indianapolis
WOW! 13.5 points! If anyone can do it, it is the Colts. But they won't do it. Take the Texans and the points.
FINAL: Colts 43 Texans 24 - Fyodor loses! (Uh oh...)

New Orleans (-2) at Green Bay
This is my Bret Favre's Career Memorial Pick of the Year. Pick the Packers and the points.
FINAL: Saints 34 Packers 27 - Fyodor loses! (Ack!)

New York Giants (+3) at Philadelphia
I'll take the Giants and the points.
FINAL: Giants 30 Eagles 24 - Fyodor loses! (Thanks, Eagles, for gagging on that 17 point lead. And what did McNabb think he was doing out there?)

Oakland (+12) at Baltimore
Joe Six-Pack Parlay has bet this line up from 9 to 12. The Raiders are horrible and I hate to pick them, but I have one of my famous hunches. Take Oakland and all those points.
FINAL: Ravens 28 Raiders 6 - Fyodor loses! (Stupid hunches.)

Tampa Bay (+5.5) at Atlanta
The Bucs always find a way to stop Mr. Vick. Pick Tampa and the points.
FINAL: Falcons 14 Buccaneers 3 - Fyodor loses! (Will Simms the Younger grow up to be an NFL QB?)

Arizona (+7) at Seattle
Despite the refs' conspiracy against them, the Seahawks will cover.
FINAL: Seahawks 21 Cardinals 10 - Fyodor wins!

St. Louis (-3) at San Francisco
This line looks too good to be true, but I think the 49ers only played Arizona last week, and that shouldn't really count as a good performance. Take the Rams to cover easily.
FINAL: 49ers 20 Rams 13 - Fyodor loses! (Ack!)

Kansas City (+11) at Denver
Damon Huard? I wouldn't bet this game with Senator Murder's money, but just for fun, I'll take Denver to cover the huge spread.
FINAL: Broncos 9 Chiefs 6 - Fyodor loses!

New England (-6) at New York Jets
I'll pick the Pats to cover.
FINAL: Patriots 24 Jets 17 - Fyodor wins!

Tennessee (+12) at San Diego
Collins versus Rivers? Crummy Game of the Week! Pick the Titans and the points.
FINAL: Chargers 40 Titans 7 - Fyodor loses! (Well, it was crummy...)

Washington (+6) at Dallas
Take the Redskins and the points. Dallas still has T.O., you know. And Drew Bledsoe.
FINAL: Cowboys 27 Redskins 10 - Fyodor loses!

Monday 9/18

Pittsburgh (-2) at Jacksonville
Big Ben might play, but it does not really matter. The Jaguars will quickly realize they are not playing against the Dallas D. Pick Pittsburgh. (BTW, why can't we have two games every Monday night?)
FINAL: Jaguars 9 Steelers 0 - Fyodor loses! (Let us hope Roethlisberger had all the rust knocked off him last night. Coming up: A division battle against the Bengals.)

Fyodor's College Football Picks of the Week.

1) The guys who set the lines are professionals. Their job is to make each game look as attractive as possible to everyone. That way they even out the amount of money bet on each side.
Instant translation: The house wins no matter who wins. That's why people get into the gambling business.

2) I am just a fan. I won't even keep track of these picks week to week if it gets too embarrassing.

3) There is no such thing as "inside information". Especially in the pros.

4) If those idiot touts on tv and in the paper were any good, they wouldn't go public with their genius. They'd sit at Harrah's sports book from open to close and then go out and buy $2,000 an hour hookers who dress like high school girls.

5) Gambling is stupid. You cannot win.

That being said, here are my college picks for this week.

Saturday 9/16

Brigham Young (+7) at Boston College
I gotta go with the Eagles to cover at home.

Cincinnati (+29.5) at Ohio State
Since I am not really gambling here, I have no doubt the Buckeyes will cover this huge number.
FINAL: Ohio State 37 Cincinnati 7 - Fyodor wins! (Take that! you evil hook!)

Duke (+35) at Virginia Tech
Another huge number! What the heck, it's not basketball season - take Tech to cover.
FINAL: Virginia Tech 36 Duke 0 - Fyodor wins!

Syracuse (+3) at Illinois
This could very well be The Lousy Game of the Millenium. All tape of this contest will be burned! Take the Orange (formerly) men and the points.
FINAL: Syracuse 31 Illinois 21 - Fyodor wins!

Michigan State (+2.5) at Pittsburgh
The line is enticing! The line is begging me to take the Panthers! I MUST OBEY THE LINE! Pick Pitt at home.
FINAL: MSU 38 Pitt 23 - Fyodor loses! (Stupid line.)

Iowa State (+13) at Iowa
The Cyclones stink out loud, but it's a rivalry game. Take State and the points.
FINAL: Iowa 27 Iowa State 17 - Fyodor wins! (This is the kind of pick on Saturday that helps me get through all the lousy Sunday ones.)

Alabama-Birmingham (+17) at Georgia
This one worries me, but I will go with the Bulldogs to cover.
FINAL: Georgia 34 UAB 0 - Fyodor wins! (Silly Fyodor. But the Bulldogs are overrated.)

Louisiana State (+3) at Auburn
This should be a great game. I have to take Auburn, but I won't be shocked if LSU covers or wins outright.
FINAL: Auburn 7 LSU 3 - Fyodor wins!

Michigan (+5.5) at Notre Dame
This game is always close. (Except last year. Heehee!) I'll take the Wolverines and the points. The Irish will win by a field goal.
FINAL: Michigan 47 Notre Dame 21 - Fyodor wins! (ACK! The worst ND performance since the Gerry Faust era.)

Miami (+4) at Louisville
My head says Miami, but my heart says Louisville. Silly head. Pick the Cardinals.
FINAL: Louisville 31 Miami 7 - Fyodor wins! (Miami is not a good team.)

Ohio University (+15.5) at Rutgers
I am riding the Rutgers juggernaut until it jumps the tracks. (Sorry.) Take the Knights.
FINAL: Rutgers 24 Ohio 7 - Fyodor wins! (Yippee!)

Oklahoma (+5) at Oregon
I know Oregon is good and they're at home, but this line smells fishy. It's like the boys in Vegas are tempting Your Humble Servant to pick the Sooners. Make this my Contrarian Pick of the Week. Take the Ducks to cover.
FINAL: Oregon 34 Oklahoma 33 - Fyodor loses! (Sooners got screwed by instant replay, which will be the death of sport.)

Texas (-32) at Rice
Rice's home field advantage should be enough to avoid a 33+ point blow out at the hands of...Whom am I kidding? Take Texas.
FINAL: Texas 52 Rice 7 - Fyodor wins!

University of Louisiana at Monroe (+24.5) at Alabama
I typed out UL-Monroe's entire name because I don't think Bama is going to cover that number. Their third string won't dominate.
FINAL: Alabama 41 UL Monroe 7 - Fyodor wins!

Arizona State (-11) at Colorado
I will take the Sun Devils to cover because I am going against Colorado every chance I get this year.
FINAL: ASU 21 Colorado 3 - Fyodor wins!

Clemson (+5) at Florida State
This should be another good one. The Seminoles' O has not impressed me and the Tigers should still be upset about the BC game. Take Clemson and the points.
FINAL: Clemson 27 FSU 20 - Fyodor wins! (Are the guys who set the college lines really the same ones who set Sunday's?)

Nebraska (+17.5) at USC
Husker fans are delusional, and even though I think this number is way too big, I will take the Trojans just to spite them.
FINAL: USC 28 Nebraska 10 - Fyodor wins!

Florida (-3.5) at Tennessee
Another good game! The Vols usually find a way to mess this one up every year...BUT NOT THIS TIME! Take Tenneessee to cover EASILY!
FINAL: Florida 21 Tennessee 20 - Fyodor wins! (Behold the beauty of the point spread! I win even though I was completely wrong!)

Religion of Wholesome Youth Activities Update.

Mohammedans only, eh? Well, that was almost two whole years ago. I am certain our mohammedan neighbors don't do this sort of ignorant nonsense these days...

It could almost always be worse, kiddies. Look what the mohammedans do to their kiddies in lands where there are no distractions such as jeans, Pepsi, and free elections...

WorldNetDaily: 'Hezbollah youth scouts' train in terrorism
Thousands of children, teens prepare for apocalyptic battle against 'evil'

TEL AVIV – Hezbollah leads a youth movement that instructs tens of thousands of children and teenagers in military tactics and indoctrinates them with radical Shia Islam beliefs – including the waging of a final, apocalyptic world battle against "evil," according to materials found by Israel during last month's war in Lebanon.

"Hezbollah established its Imam Mahdi Scouts to attract Shiite children and adolescents, to influence their hearts and minds and to prepare new generations of youth indoctrinated with radical Shiite Islam, which propounds the idea of the return of the Mahdi (messiah) as one of Hezbollah's central principles," states a report by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center at Israel's Center for Special Studies.

"Hezbollah wants to create a new generation of operatives for its own ranks who will take part in its violent campaign against Israel," the report states.

Where did you think all those Kremlin touch-up artists* work now?

Scattisi prego per ingrandire.

* See The Commissar Vanishes.

In defense of freckles: Marisa Miller. (Part Two)

From the pages of The King Abdullah Gazette:

Totalitarian Pennsylvania Update.

The Jason Voorhees of unconstitutional pay increases rises from the dead yet again to terrorize the wallets of Pennsylvanians.

The Old Gray Whore: Pennsylvania Judges Decide They, Alone, Will Get Raises

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court partially reinstated a controversial raise that state legislators repealed last year after a popular outcry.

Take that, you ants!

LiveScience.com (via Yahoo!): Vicious ants made to attack their own

They may be tiny, but Argentine ants can kick some ant butt. This invasive species has nearly wiped out native ants in California.

Now scientists have discovered a way to turn one of the ants' strongest weapons into a weakness.

By altering the identifying chemicals coating the ants' bodies, researchers turned typical cooperative behavior into an ant-family feud.

Like most ants, the Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) relies on chemical tags to identify friend or foe. The chemicals are waxy and can't evaporate into the air like other animal communication chemicals called pheromones. The ants must make physical contact to smell them.

Due to time constraints, we now move to further action.

To try and outsmart the ants, the research team, led by UC Irvine evolutionary biologist Neil Tsutsui, whipped up batches of chemical compounds with a similar structure to those coating the Argentine ant colonies. When they coated one of the colony ants with the new compound, the other ants began attacking it as an enemy.

"Our preliminary results strongly suggest that by manipulating these chemicals on the exoskeleton, one could disrupt the cooperative behavior of these ants and, in essence, trigger civil unrest within these huge colonies," Shea said.

The work was described today at a meeting of the American Chemical Society in San Francisco.

"I think that this is really important, because they are finally starting to crack the code of how Argentine ants recognize and communicate with each other," said Brian Fisher, curator of entomology at the California Academy of Sciences. Fisher was not involved in the study.

Getting the chemical treatment was dizzying. First, Tsutsui and his team coated the inside of a vial with the chemical. They plopped an ant into the tube and spun it in a machine for 90 seconds to make the chemical stick.

"After all that shaking it's a little bit wobbly but usually it's still alive," Sulc said. "Then, we put it back into the Petri dish with ten of its friends from the same colony and then we observe how aggressive they are toward him."

The other ants immediately attacked, using their large mandibles, or jaws, to bite and tear off its legs, Sulc said.

The invasion of Argentine ants could ripple through the ecosystem, affecting more than just the native ants. For instance, the Coastal Horned lizard relies exclusively on the native ants for food, and as these ants dwindle so could the lizard.

Until now, neither pesticides nor trapping has thwarted the spread of the Argentine ants.

The scientists hope the strategy could be used in the future to finally check the spread of the Argentine ants.


AFP: Morning-after pill does not cut British abortion rate - study

There is no greater love...

This should be enough to shame the mohammedans into silence and repentance. This should be enough to cause them to cease their despicable attacks on the Holy Father and The One True Church...

But I won't hold my breath, kiddies.

ChristianityToday.com: Archbishop Proposes to Die in Place of Woman Sentenced to Stoning
Okogie’s offer is a protest against Nigeria’s Islamic Shari‘ah law.
By Obed Minchakpu in Lagos posted 02/25/2002

A Nigerian Catholic archbishop has voluntarily offered to die in place of a Muslim woman who has been condemned to death by stoning by an Islamic court for the crime of adultery.

Dr Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, the Catholic archbishop of the Lagos Archdiocese in south-western Nigeria, has offered to pay the sentence recently imposed on the woman in the northern state of Sokoto in a case which has created an international outcry. The man has been allowed to go free.

The woman, Safiya Hussaini Tungar-tudu, is appealing the conviction; the next hearing has been set for March 18.

In a statement released to the news media by the archdiocese earlier this week, Archbishop Okogie explained that he decided to make the offer as a protest of the Nigerian Catholic Church against the Islamic Shari‘ah legal system.

The archbishop accused the system of deliberately persecuting Christians and the poor of northern Nigeria. He called on religious leaders vested with responsibility for administering and interpreting the Islamic legal code to do so in the fear of God and with humility, taking human considerations into account.

The archbishop warned the nation's political leaders that unless checked, policies in certain Nigerian states could isolate the entire nation from the international community.

Under the strict Shari‘ah law applied in Sokoto, adultery carries a mandatory death sentence.

Hussaini, a nursing mother whose one-year-old baby girl is at the center of the case, was convicted of having had an illicit sexual affair with a man out of wedlock.

Her lawyers were preparing to appeal the verdict on the grounds that Hussaini was raped. But Hussaini, who is divorced, has since claimed that her former husband is the father of the child, which would not be an offense under Shari‘ah law.

Bello Sanyinnawal, the judge who convicted Hussaini, said the criteria for adultery on the part of a man were very specific.

Speaking of Hussaini's case, Sanyinnawal said, "The man had to be freed for lack of evidence. Under the Shari‘ah law, for the man to be convicted, there must be four male witnesses who saw them at the same time having sex. Either that or the man himself confesses to the act. These two instances were lacking."

The judge said that the sentence passed on Hussaini, if carried out, would ensure her access to paradise. "She will be saved on the day of judgment. The manner of her death now will save her from a terrible ordeal on judgment day. She may be admitted in the good heaven."

Abdulkadir Imam Ibrahim, a legal practitioner, has filed an appeal on her behalf at the Sokoto State Sharia Court of Appeal and asked for a stay of execution of the death sentence pending the appeal.

"I can't predict anything now, but surely, we will examine very critically whether there were procedural or legal errors in the judgment delivered,” he said.

Mallam Hussaini Tungar, Hussaini's father, said that he had appealed to both the state of Sokoto and the federal government not to kill his daughter: "I don't want my daughter to be stoned to death. Allah is forgiving. Let them forgive her." (Thanks to Laura Ingraham for reminding me.)

What happened?

Here is Salbiah Ahmad, a visiting scholar of the Islam and Human Rights project of the Law and Religion programme at the University of Emory Law School in Atlanta, Georgia. This was posted 10/27/2003 at WLUML:

By the emails I have received, the Nigerian case of Amina Lawal has generated some interest in Malaysia as well. One of my earliest involvement with Islamic law in the 90s has been with campaigns at the regional level around hudud law and its impact on women. I sincerely hope that the battle of the hearts and minds of Muslims would not have to be fought over women’s bodies (and death). I think this is also the concern of the emails from Malaysia.

Country practice does show that invariably, the first victims of hudud would be women accused of zina (illicit sexual intercourse). This was the case in Pakistan under its Hudood Ordinances, as in Nigeria under its state hudud laws.

Nigeria has two cases tried in the Sharia Court. The first was the case of Safiya Hussaini Tungar Tudu. Safiya, 35 was acquitted on appeal in the state of Sokoto. The second involves a 31-year-old mother of four Amina Lawal Kurami.

Both Safiya and Amina came from impoverished families. Both married very young at 12 and 14 respectively and both were abandoned by their husbands and left to care for children without any financial support. The women accused of zina under the Pakistan Hudood Ordinances share similar backgrounds. These are well documented by human rights groups in the respective countries.

Amina Lawal was charged and convicted of zina in the lower sharia court in the state of Katsina, Nigeria in March 2002. She appealed her conviction and sentence of death by stoning (rajm) to the upper sharia court. That court affirmed the conviction and sentence in August 2002. She then appealed to the sharia court of appeal which acquitted her on Sept 25, 2003 in majority of four-to-one judgment.

The sentence to death by stoning, for illicit sex by a married person (adultery) is prescribed in the Sharia Penal Code of the Katsina state.

Victory for Sharia

The governor of Lagos, Nigeria made a statement to an online local press that would probably be well received as well here in Malaysia by those in support of the enforcement of hudud.

He said that the acquittal marks, "a victory for the sharia legal system" and that "the sharia is a well-developed legal system that places emphasis on objectivity, respect for evidence, serious regard for the truth and a holistic perspective that combines morality and legality".

A colleague at Emory Law School’s Islam and Human Rights project, Dr Ali Ahmad of the University of Bayero Law School in Kano, Nigeria offers a different perspective of the acquittal.

"The first acquittal of an adultery charge was that of Safiya, and anyone who thought Amina would really be stoned to death in Nigeria was mistaken. But far more mistaken is anyone who believes the lady’s acquittal was only due to Sharia’s internal mechanism as implemented in Katsina.

"Nothing can be farther from the truth. In my view, Safiya’s earlier acquittal was due largely to international public opinion. Amina’s trial attracted even more intense international opinion and the outcome was equally predictable. And one can fairly predict similar adultery cases that will be filed. The Nigerian public can now appreciate what circus those in authority have turned Sharia to be." (amanaonline.com)

Senator War Hero is looking more and more like The Manchurian Candidate* every day.

McCain, his Repansycan buddies, and the entire Party of Blasphemy, Buggery, and 'Bortion (with the exception of "Self Hatin' Joe" Lieberman) are determined to lose this war. If you wake up some morning with your wife wearing a rug from head to toe and all your goats pregnant, you'll know whom to string up from the nearest tree...

Financial Times: McCain ‘will risk presidency’ over CIA jails
McCain, the perceived Republican frontrunner for the 2008 presidential election, has dramatically raised the stakes in a fight with the White House over secret Central Intelligence Agency prisons by saying he is unwilling to back down on the issue even if it ruins his chance of becoming president.

Birmingham News: Earlier primary brings in McCain
U.S. Sen. John McCain's political action committee has spread around $117,500 to Alabama Republicans, the most aggressive financial strategy in the state from a potential 2008 presidential candidate so far and proof that the earlier primary is attracting national attention.

Sodom By The Bay Chronicle: Bush's torture policy rejected / Senate panel backs McCain's Geneva Conventions stand
A Senate committee rebuffed the personal entreaties of President Bush on Thursday and rejected his proposed strategies for interrogating and trying enemy combatants, approving alternative legislation that he has strenuously opposed. The bipartisan vote...

* Huh?

Reality bites Dog.

The Charlotte Observer: 'Dog' the bounty hunter arrested

Bounty hunter Duane "Dog" Chapman, who made reality fodder out of chasing bail jumpers, was arrested Thursday on federal charges of illegal detention and conspiracy in an alleged kidnapping three years ago. Two of Chapman's co-stars on the cable series "Dog The Bounty Hunter" were also arrested. The charges stem from Chapman's capture of Max Factor heir Andrew Luster on June 18, 2003...


The unspeakable horror reaches the T-Ball level.

Sports Illustrated: Coach convicted in autistic player's beaning

UNIONTOWN, Pa. (AP) -- A baseball coach accused of offering an 8-year-old money to bean an autistic teammate so he couldn't play was convicted Thursday of two lesser charges against him, and evaded more serious charges.

It wasn't only consumers who paid for all those cushy UAW contracts in the '60s and 70's.

WGAL: Ford To Cut Thousands Of Jobs, Close Plants
Company Will Also Offer Buyouts To All Workers

DETROIT -- Ford says it's cutting 10,000 more of its salaried employees and expanding buyout and early retirement offers to the company's entire U.S. hourly work force of 75,000.

The company said in a news release that it's already cut 4,000 of the salaried positions in the first quarter of this year. Most of the remaining salaried job cuts are to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2007, eliminating a total of about one-third of Ford's salaried positions.

It expects to cut 25,000-to-30,000 manufacturing jobs in North America by 2008, four years ahead of its previous target. Ford also will boost plant closings from seven to nine.

Ford's plan to return the automaker to profitability also includes shutting down a stamping plant in Maumee, Ohio, and an engine plant in Essex, Ontario.

Ford also said it will close an assembly plant in Norfolk, Va., next year, a year earlier than previously announced.

The moves are part of a broader restructuring plan aimed at restoring the troubled No. 2 automaker to profitability. Ford expects its so-called "Way Forward" plan to trim ongoing operating costs by about $5 billion a year.

NO! Say it ain't so, Reggie!

Yahoo! Sports: Cash and carry

An eight-month Yahoo! Sports investigation has revealed that Heisman Trophy-winning running back Reggie Bush and his family appear to have accepted financial benefits worth more than $100,000 from marketing agents while Bush was playing at the University of Southern California.

Major Steve Austin, call your office.

Ah...the sweet smell of applied science!

AP: Bionic arm gives hope to GIs and other amputees

DAYTON, Tenn. - Jesse Sullivan has two prosthetic arms, but he can climb a ladder at his house and roll on a fresh coat of paint. He's also good with a weed-whacker, bending his elbow and rotating his forearm to guide the machine. He's even mastered a more sensitive maneuver — hugging his grandchildren.

The motions are coordinated and smooth because his left arm is a bionic device controlled by his brain. He thinks, "Close hand," and electrical signals sent through surgically re-routed nerves make it happen.

Doctors describe Sullivan as the first amputee with a thought-controlled artificial arm.

Researchers encouraged Sullivan, who became an amputee in an industrial accident, not to go easy on his experimental limb.

"When I left, they said don't bring it back looking new," the 59-year-old Sullivan said with a grin, his brow showing sweat beneath a fraying Dollywood amusement park cap. At times he been so rough with the bionic arm that it has broken, including once when he pulled the end off starting a lawnmower.

That prompted researchers to make improvements, part of a U.S. government initiative to refine artificial limbs that connect body and mind.

The National Institutes of Health has supported the research, joined more recently by the military's research-and-development wing, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Some 411 U.S. troops in
Iraq and 37 in Afghanistan have had wounds that cost them at least one limb, the Army Medical Command says.

Although work that created Sullivan's arm preceded the research by DARPA, he said he's proud to test a type of bionic arm that soldiers could someday use. "Those guys are heroes in my book," he said, "and they should have the best there is."

"We're excited about collaborating with the military," said the developer of Sullivan's arm, Dr. Todd Kuiken, director of neuroengineering at the Center for Artificial Limbs at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, one of 35 partners now in a DARPA project to develop a state-of-the-art arm.

Sullivan's bionic arm represents an advance over typical artificial arms, like the right-arm prosthesis he uses, which has a hook and operates with sequential motions. There is no perceivable delay in the motions of Sullivan's flesh-colored, plastic-like left arm. Until now, it has been nearly impossible to recreate the subtle and complex motion of a human arm.

"It is not as smooth as a normal arm but it works much smoother than a normal prosthesis," Kuiken said.

Sullivan lost his arms in May 2001 working as a utility lineman. He suffered electrical burns so severe that doctors had to amputate both his arms at the shoulder.

Seven weeks later, due to what Sullivan calls being in the right place at the right time, he was headed to meet the Chicago researchers.

"Jesse is an absolutely remarkable human being, with or without his injuries," Kuiken said.

Sullivan said his bionic arm isn't much like the one test pilot Steve Austin got in the '70s TV series "The Six Million Dollar Man." "I don't really feel superhuman or anything," he said.

"It's not magic," added his 4-year-old grandson, Luke Westlake, as he placed a nut in Sullivan's grip and challenged Paw-Paw to crack it open.

It is better than magical, Luke. It is super cool.

Not magic but high-tech science makes the bionic arm work. A procedure called "muscle reinnervation," developed by Kuiken and used on five additional patients so far, is the key.

For Sullivan, it involved grafting shoulder nerves, which used to go to his arms, to his pectoral muscle. The grafts receive thought-generated impulses, and the muscle activity is picked up by electrodes; these relay the signals to the arm's computer, which causes motors to move the elbow and hand, mimicking a normal arm.

"The nerves grow into the chest muscles, so when the patient thinks, 'Close hand,' a portion of the chest muscle contracts," according to an institute fact sheet.

Kuiken added: "Basically it is connecting the dots. Finding the nerves. We have to free the nerves and see how far they reach" and connect to muscles.

About three months after the surgery, Sullivan first noticed voluntary twitches in his pectoral muscle when he tried to bend his missing elbow, the institute said. By five months, he could activate four different areas of his major pectoral muscle.

Trying to flex his missing elbow would cause a strong contraction of the muscle area just beneath the clavicle. When he mentally closed his missing hand, a signal could be detected on the pectoral region below the clavicle, and when he tried to open his hand there was a separate signal.
Extending his elbow and hand caused a contraction of the lower pectoral muscle.

When Sullivan's chest was touched he "had a sensation of touch to different parts of his hand and arm," the institute said. "The patient had substituted sensation of touch, graded pressure, sharp-dull and thermal sensation."

Sullivan said of the thought-controlled arm: "When I use the new prosthesis I just do things. I don't have to think about it."

Kuiken describes the procedure on Sullivan as the first time such a graft has been used to control an artificial limb.

Gregory Clark, associate professor of bioengineering and prosthetics researcher at the University of Utah, agreed, adding that a conventional prosthethic limb is "limited in a number of ways in the types of movements. Moreover, it can do only one of those movements at any particular moment."

Clark said a natural arm is capable of 22 discrete movements. Sullivan's bionic limb is capable of four right now, though researchers are working to make them better.

"Four is wonderful," Clark said.

Sullivan said his bionic arm allows him to rotate his upper arm, bend his elbow, rotate his wrist, and open and close his hand — in some instances simultaneously.

He and Kuiken were set to attend a Washington, D.C., news conference Thursday with Claudia Mitchell, the first woman to receive the bionic arm. The 26-year-old Mitchell was injured in a motorcycle accident after she left the Marines in 2004.

Trying his new arm at increasingly challenging tasks, Sullivan acknowledges he has good days and bad ones.

"At first, I couldn't watch when he tried doing this stuff," said Sullivan's wife of 22 years, Carolyn.

She said she first thought after the accident that he was going to die. She gave up her catering business to tend to him around the clock.

But eventually he forced her to occasionally run errands and leave him alone.

"He finally got mad and yelled at me and told me to go to the store," she said, laughing.

Enormous lifestyle adjustments that the injuries and rehabilitation required were not as hard as might be expected, she said.

"For some reason, we just sort of rolled into it. I just knew he wasn't going to let anything keep him down," she said.

She said medication helps control his pain, and sometimes he resorts to self hypnosis. "They taught him how to do that," she said, adding she doesn't consider herself to be a caretaker.

"I do all the yard work," Jesse Sullivan said. "I take out the garbage."
He can even hold a fork to eat.

And there's another task the bionic grandfather of 10 looks forward to mastering: casting a fishing line.

False Religion Of Peace and Love Update.

I had a feeling the mohammedans would react violently to hearing The Truth.

AP: Turkish lawmaker compares pope to Hitler

ANKARA, Turkey - Turkey's ruling Islamic-rooted party joined a wave of criticism of Pope Benedict XVI on Friday, accusing him of trying to revive the spirit of the Crusades with remarks he made about Islam. A party official said the pontiff would go down in history "in the same category as leaders such as Hitler and Mussolini" for his words.

You will find Pope Benedict's Regensberg address here.

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. Pray for us, Blessed Mother.

Today's reading for the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows is
1 Corinthians 9:16-19, 22-27.
Today's Responsorial Psalm is
Psalms 84:3, 4, 5-6, 12.
Today's Gospel reading is
John 19:25-27.

Everyday links:

The Blessed Virgin Mary
The Rosary
Our Mother of Perpetual Help
Prayers from EWTN
National Coalition of Clergy and Laity (dedicated to action for a genuine Catholic Restoration)
The Catholic Calendar Page for Today
ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome

Just in case you are wondering what exactly Catholics believe, here is

The Apostles Creed

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into Heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting. Amen.


Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that any one who fled to thy protection, implored thy help or sought thy intercession,was left unaided.Inspired with this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins my Mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful; O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me. Amen.

St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse, pray for us.

Anima Christi

Soul of Christ, sanctify me; Body of Christ, save me; Blood of Christ, inebriate me; Water from Christ's side, wash me; Passion of Christ, strengthen me; O good Jesus, hear me; Within Thy wounds hide me; Suffer me not to be separated from Thee; From the malicious enemy defend me; In the hour of my death call me; And bid me come unto Thee; That I may praise Thee with Thy saints and with Thy angels Forever and ever. Amen.

Prayer to St. Anthony, Martyr of Desire

Dear St. Anthony, you became a Franciscan with the hope of shedding your blood for Christ. In God's plan for you, your thirst for martyrdom was never to be satisfied. St. Anthony, Martyr of Desire, pray that I may become less afraid to stand up and be counted as a follower of the Lord Jesus. Intercede also for my other intentions. (Name them.)

Prayer To Saint Michael The Archangel

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the divine power, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Prayer to End Abortion

Lord God, I thank You today for the gift of my life, and for the lives of all my brothers and sisters. I know there is nothing that destroys more life than abortion, yet I rejoice that you have conquered death by the resurrection of Your Son. I am ready to do my part to end abortion. Today I commit myself never to be silent, never to be passive, and never to be forgetful of the unborn. I commit myself to be active in the pro-life movement, and never stop defending life until all my brothers and sisters are protected and our nation once again becomes a nation with liberty and justice, not just for some, but for all. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer For Vocations

Send forth your Spirit, Lord, into the hearts of your faithful people, that we may be conscious of our vocation to holiness and sevice to others. Grant that many of us may dedicate ourselves to You through the priesthood and the religious life.We pray especially for the needs of our own parish and diocese. Grant that we may always have sufficient good and holy priests, and dedicated Sisters to serve our commumities.We pray, too, for religious orders; that generous men may join them to become zealous missionaries in preaching the Gospel in word and action, especially to the poor and abandoned.We make this prayer through Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Redeemer. Amen.

Prayer Before The Crucifix

Behold, O kind and gentle Jesus, I kneel before Thee and pray that Thou would impress upon my heart the virtues of faith, hope, and charity, with true repentance for my sins and a firm purpose of amendment. At the same time, with sorrow I meditate on Thy five precious wounds, having in mind the words which David spoke in prophecy: "They have pierced my hands and my feet. I can count all my bones."

Thursday, September 14, 2006

You know I love you, ladies, but this would explain that fixing your makeup in the rearview mirror thingee.


MEN are cleverer than women, according to scientific research.
That is why women have difficulty rising to the top of their careers, claims top psychologist John Philippe Rushton.

Did you catch that, girls? Not just a psychologist. A top psychologist.

Professor Rushton claims the "glass ceiling" phenomenon is probably due to inferior intelligence rather than discrimination.

That chick from H-P must really be a dude.

His team analysed 100,000 aptitude tests taken by 17 and 18-year-olds of both sexes.

Wow. No misuse of the word "gender"...Satan must be feeling a bit chilly...

Researchers focused on the general intelligence factor which relates to how quickly an individual can grasp a concept and is widely considered the most crucial ingredient for high IQ scores.

They discovered males scored an average of 3.63 IQ points higher than their female counterparts.

"Honey, what could nearly four IQ points mean when we love each other? Now go make my lunch."

That, gentleman, is an example of the kind of carelessness that will get you a rolling pin (Ha! As if they know how to bake!) upside your head. And that will cost you at least 20 IQ points!

So, do the smart thing and keep your mouth shut. Isn't it enough to have proof of what we have known since we were ten?

Women performed worse across every socio-economic level and across several ethnic groups.

Prof Rushton said men were more intelligent "throughout the entire distribution of scores, in every level of family income, for every level of fathers' and mothers' education and for each of seven ethnic groups", according to tests.

The findings overturn a 100-year consensus that men and women average the same in mental ability.

It also conflicts with evidence that girls do better in school exams than boys.

But Rushton, professor of psychology at the University of Western Ontario in Canada, said: "Up until late adolescence, the females have the advantage over males because they mature faster, which masks the underlying difference."

For decades, psychologists have accepted that men and women differ mentally, with males better in terms of "spatial ability" and females better on tests of "verbal ability".

But Prof Rushton said his results reinforce similar studies carried out by Richard Lynn at the University of Ulster and Helmut Nyborg at Aarhus University in Denmark.

He admitted his research had come up with "unpopular conclusions".

But he added: "People should not be made to feel afraid to study controversial issues.

"We have to find the truth about the normal distribution in society."

Sean loses another alias.

AP: Astronomers find puffy planet orbiting distant star

If Only Bin Laden Had a Stained Blue Dress...

Who but Ann Coulter has an aim like that?

If you wonder why it took 50 years to get the truth about Joe McCarthy, consider the fanatical campaign of the Clinton acolytes to kill an ABC movie that relies on the 9/11 Commission Report, which whitewashed only 90% of Clinton's cowardice and incompetence in the face of terrorism, rather than 100%.

Islamic jihadists attacked America year after year throughout the Clinton administration. They did everything but blow up his proverbial "bridge to the 21st century." Every year but one, Clinton found an excuse not to fight back.

The first month Clinton was in office, Islamic terrorists with suspected links to al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein bombed the World Trade Center.
For the first time ever, a terrorist act against America was treated not as a matter of national security, but exclusively as a simple criminal offense. The individual bombers were tried in a criminal court. (The one plotter who got away fled to Iraq, that peaceful haven of kite-flying children until Bush invaded and turned it into a nation of dangerous lunatics.)

In 1995 and 1996, various branches of the Religion of Peace -- al Qaeda, Hezbollah and the Iranian "Party of God" -- staged car bomb attacks on American servicemen in Saudi Arabia, killing 24 members of our military in all. Each time, the Clinton Administration came up with an excuse to do nothing.

Despite the Democrats' current claim that only the capture of Osama bin Laden will magically end terrorism forever, Clinton turned down Sudan's offer to hand us bin Laden in 1996. That year, Mohammed Atta proposed the 9/11 attack to bin Laden.

Clinton refused the handover of bin Laden because -- he said in taped remarks on Feb. 15, 2002 -- "(bin Laden) had committed no crime against America, so I did not bring him here because we had no basis on which to hold him." Luckily, after 9/11, we can get him on that trespassing charge.

Only in 1998 did the Clinton-haters ("normal people") force Clinton into a military response. Solely because of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, Clinton finally lobbed a few bombs in the general direction of Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden.

In August 1998, three days after Clinton admitted to the nation that he did in fact have "sex with that woman," he bombed Afghanistan and Sudan, doing about as much damage as another Clinton fusillade did to a blue Gap dress.

The day of Clinton's scheduled impeachment, Dec. 18, 1998, he bombed Iraq. This accomplished two things: 1) It delayed his impeachment for one day, and 2) it got a lot of Democrats on record about the monumental danger of Saddam Hussein and his weapons of mass destruction.

So don't tell me impeachment "distracted" Clinton from his aggressive pursuit of terrorists. He never would have bombed anyone if it weren't for the Clinton-haters.


As soon as Clinton was no longer "distracted" by impeachment, he went right back to doing nothing in response to terrorism. In October 2000, al Qaeda bombed the USS Cole, killing 17 sailors and nearly sinking the ship.

Clinton did nothing. This is only an abbreviated list of Clinton's surrender to Islamic savagery. For a president who supposedly stayed up all night "working" and hated vacations, Clinton sure spent a lot of time sitting around on his butt while America was being attacked.

According to Rich Miniter, author of "Losing Bin Laden" (published by Regnery, a HUMAN EVENTS sister company), Clinton's top national security advisers made the following classic Democrat excuses for doing nothing in response to the Cole attack:

Attorney General Janet Reno "thought retaliation might violate international law and was therefore against it."

CIA Director George Tenet "wanted more definitive proof that bin Laden was behind the attack, although he personally thought he was."

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright "was concerned about the reaction of world opinion to a retaliation against Muslims and the impact it would have in the final days of the Clinton Middle East peace process." (How did that turn out, by the way? Big success, I take it? Everybody over there all friendly with one another?)

Secretary of Defense William Cohen "did not consider the Cole attack 'sufficient provocation' for a military retaliation."

Cohen is a pansy.

Less than a year after Clinton's final capitulation to Islamic terrorists, they staged the largest terrorist attack in history on U.S. soil. The Sept. 11 attack, planning for which began in the '90s, followed eight months of President Bush -- but eight years of Bill Clinton.

Clinton's own campaign adviser on Iraq, Laurie Mylroie, says Clinton and his advisers are "most culpable" for the intelligence failure that allowed 9/11 to happen.

Now, after five years of no terrorist attacks in America, Democrats are hoping we'll forget the consequences of the Democrat strategy of doing nothing in response to terrorism and abandon the Bush policies that have kept this nation safe since 9/11. But first, they need to rewrite history.

Bob Novak knows 'cause he was there, kiddies.

If one did not know better, one would think the Plameplot Dome scandal was something other than an attempted left-fascist coup.

From the Evans-Novak Political Report:

CIA Leak

Now that former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage has finally acknowledged he was my source three years ago in revealing Valerie Plame Wilson as a CIA employee, his interviews have obscured what he really did and said. I want to set the record straight based on firsthand knowledge of what transpired.

1. Armitage did not, as he now indicates, merely pass on something he had heard and that he "thinks" might be so. Rather, he identified to me the CIA division where Mrs. Wilson worked and said flatly that she recommended the mission to Niger by her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson. He told the Washington Post last week that his answer was: "I don't know, but I think his wife worked out there." Neither of us took notes, and nobody else was present, but I recalled our conversation that week in writing a column, while Armitage reconstructed the conversation months later for federal prosecutors. In fact, he had told me unequivocally that Mrs. Wilson worked in the CIA's Counter-Proliferation Division and had suggested her husband's mission.

2. Armitage did not slip me this information as idle chitchat. He made clear he considered it especially suited for my column. It is highly doubtful that he never expected this to be published, as he specifically noted to me that Mrs. Wilson's role was the sort of news item very much in the tradition of the old Evans & Novak column.

3. An accurate depiction of what Armitage actually said deepens the irony of his being my source. He was a foremost internal skeptic of the administration's war policy, and I, likewise, had long opposed military intervention in Iraq. Zealous foes of George W. Bush have depicted me, implausibly, as the President's lapdog. But even they cannot fit Armitage into the left-wing fantasy of a well-crafted White House conspiracy to destroy Joe and Valerie Wilson. The news that Armitage, and not Karl Rove, was the leaker was devastating for the left.

4. During his quarter of a century in Washington, Armiage and I had no contact before our fateful interview. I tried to see him in the first two and a half years of the Bush Administration, but he rebuffed me -- summarily and with disdain, I thought. Then, without explanation, in June 2003, Armitage's office said the deputy secretary would see me. This was two weeks before Joe Wilson outed himself as author of a 2002 report for the CIA debunking Iraq's interest in buying uranium in Africa.

5. I sat down with Armitage in his State Department office the afternoon of July 8 with tacit rather than explicit ground rules: deep background with nothing said attributed to Armitage or even an anonymous State Department official. Late in the hour-long interview, I asked why the CIA had sent Wilson, who lacked intelligence and nuclear policy experience as well as recent contact with Niger. This began the three-year saga during which Armitage's silence caused intense pain for his colleagues in government and enabled partisan Democrats in Congress to falsely accuse Rove of being my primary source.

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Iran's Investment Just Went Down the Tubes
Cameron S. Brown

Many in Israel and abroad were convinced that the strategic position of Hizballah and its sponsors in Tehran and Damascus will improve following the war.

How Fatah got religion and lost power
Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook

God was left out when the Palestine Liberation Organization was founded in 1964. Its 1968 charter made no mention of Allah, nor did it cite the Koran.

War of Principles
Moshe Feiglin

This was a war fought to defend the principle that Israel can retreat to the Green Line and defend itself from there. The IDF fought, but not to win.

The Chosen Targets
Bruce S. Ticker

In many ways the United States can be wonderful for Jews, in some ways it can be uncomfortable and somewhat threatening.

Kadima's worthless promises
Paula R. Stern

This was "gross incompetence." The government bungled the situation at home and dangerously miscalculated the War in Lebanon. It must pay.

Pouring aid down the drains and tunnels
David Singer

Lebanon and Gaza's five million population continue to enjoy international largesse on a scale not offered to hundreds of millions in other trouble spots.

In defense of freckles: Marisa Miller. (Part One)

From the pages of The King Abdullah Gazette:

About Me

My photo
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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