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"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, November 17, 2006

Harry S. Stamper, call your office.

...or, eek! Asteroid Nazis!

Guardian: WANTED: MAN TO LAND ON KILLER ASTEROID AND GENTLY NUDGE IT FROM PATH TO EARTH...

It is the stuff of nightmares and, until now, Hollywood thrillers. A huge asteroid is on a catastrophic collision course with Earth and mankind is poised to go the way of the dinosaurs.

To save the day, Nasa now plans to go where only Bruce Willis has gone before. The US space agency is drawing up plans to land an astronaut on an asteroid hurtling through space at more than 30,000 mph. It wants to know whether humans could master techniques needed to deflect such a doomsday object when it is eventually identified. The proposals are at an early stage, and a spacecraft needed just to send an astronaut that far into space exists only on the drawing board, but they are deadly serious. A smallish asteroid called Apophis has already been identified as a possible threat to Earth in 2036.

Chris McKay of the Nasa Johnson Space Centre in Houston told the website Space.com: "There's a lot of public resonance with the notion that Nasa ought to be doing something about killer asteroids ... to be able to send serious equipment to an asteroid.

"The public wants us to have mastered the problem of dealing with asteroids. So being able to have astronauts go out there and sort of poke one with a stick would be scientifically valuable as well as demonstrate human capabilities."

A 1bn tonne asteroid just 1km across striking the Earth at a 45 degree angle could generate the equivalent of a 50,000 megatonne thermonuclear explosion. Attempting to break it up with an atomic warhead might only generate thousands of smaller objects on a similar course, which could have time to reform. Scientists agree the best approach, given enough warning, would be to gently nudge the object into a safer orbit.

"A human mission to a near Earth asteroid would be scientifically worthwhile," Dr McKay said. "There could be testing of various approaches. We don't know enough about asteroids right now to know the best strategy for mitigation."

Matt Genge, a space researcher at Imperial College, London, has calculated that something with the mass, acceleration and thrust of a small car could push an asteroid weighing a billion tonnes out of the path of Earth in just 75 days.

Gianmarco Radice, an asteroid expert at Glasgow University, said the best approach would be to land a device to dig into the object. "You could place something on the surface to eject material that would push the asteroid in the other direction."

Mirrors, lights and even paint could change the way the object absorbed light and heat enough to shift its direction over 20 years or so. With less notice, mankind could be forced to take more drastic measures, such as setting off a massive explosion on or near the object to change its course. In 2005, Nasa's Deep Impact mission tested a different technique when it placed an object into the path of a comet.

Dr Radice said robots could do the job just as well, doing away with the need for a risky and expensive manned mission. Last year Japan showed with its Hayabusa probe that a remote spacecraft can land on an asteroid.
But with manned missions to the moon and possibly Mars on its to-do list again, Nasa is keen to extend the reach of its astronauts.

Dan Durda, a senior research scientist in the Department of Space Studies at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado said an asteroid landing mission would be a good way test the new Constellation programme spacecraft, the Apollo-style planned replacements for the space shuttle with which Nasa hopes to return to the moon.

He told Space.com: "A very natural, early extension of the exploration capabilities of this new vehicle's architecture would be a "quick-dash" near-Earth asteroid rendezvous mission."

Tom Jones, a former shuttle astronaut, said: "After a lunar visit, we face a long interval in Earth-Moon space while we build up experience and technology for a Mars mission. An asteroid mission could take us immediately into deep space, sustaining programme momentum, adding public excitement and reducing the risk of a later Mars mission."

Europe has its own efforts to tackle asteroids. Its planned Don Quijote mission will launch two robot spacecraft, one to tilt at a harmless passing space rock, and a second to film the collision and watch for any deviation in the asteroid's path.

At Nasa's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, in California, scientists monitor all "potentially hazardous asteroids" that might one day end up on a collision course with Earth. So far they number 831. The next close-ish shave - at a mere 17 times the distance from the Sun to the Earth - will be asteroid 2004QD14 on November 29.

The Earth has a long history of asteroid strikes. Thirty five million years ago, a 5km-wide asteroid ploughed into what is now Chesapeake Bay, in the US, leaving an 80km crater. In 1908, an asteroid devastated swaths of Siberia when it exploded mid-air with the force of 1,000 Hiroshimas. The theory that the dinosaurs were wiped out by a huge asteroid striking Mexico 65m years ago is controversial since scientists uncovered rocks from the crater predating the extinction of the dinosaurs by 300,000 years.
A near miss, when asteroid QW7 came within 4m km of Earth in September 2000, led Liberal Democrat MP Lembit Opik to declare: "It's not a case of if we will be hit, it is a question of when. Each of us is 750 times more likely to be killed by an asteroid than to win this weekend's lottery."

In January 2002, the former science minister, David Sainsbury, announced the government's response to the threat from hurtling asteroids: a new information centre based in Leicester.

Fyodor's Headlinks.

Sometimes, it is just too easy...

From Drudge:

Cemetery worker, 80, charged over 'grave-rage'...

Man jailed for Britain's first 'web-rage' attack...

Ack! Heat Nazis!

From Drudge:

Arctic resists warming; new patterns of cooling ocean currents...

UN climate talks struggle to agree tiny steps...

The self-destruction of Mike Tyson continues apace...

...whether there is any truth in this story or not.

ANI: Iron Mike Tyson to become Heidi Fleiss' gigolo!
New York - Now that notorious Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss has moved to a place where prostitution is legal, she trying her best to persuade former boxing heavyweight Mike Tyson to become her prize "stallion" at her male escort service.

Fliess, who has opened up her legit escort service called 'Heidi's Stud Farm' in Nevada, revealed that she had put the idea across the former World Champion, and confirmed that he was certainly interested in the idea of becoming the "big stallion" on her "farm".

"I said, 'You're going to be my big stallion.' He said, 'I don't care what any man says, it's every man's dream to please every woman ... and get paid for it.' And it's every man's fear that their girlfriend will go for Mike Tyson," the New York Daily News quoted her, as saying.

As for the fact that Tyson happens to be a convicted rapist, well Fleiss says that his past really doesn't seem to matter to a lot of women, for she's being besieged by letters telling her no to waste time bringing the boxer to the farm.

"I'm already getting letters from women who say, 'Hurry up, Heidi,'" she added.

How much will they charge for him to bite off a woman's ear?

Glen E. 'Bo' Schembechler, Requiescat in pace.

On the eve of what may be the best game in the storied history of the Michigan/OSU rivalry...

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -- Bo Schembechler, who became one of college football's great coaches in two decades at Michigan, died Friday after taping a TV show on the eve of the Wolverines' No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown with perennial rival Ohio State. He was 77.

Schembechler collapsed during the taping of a television show in Southfield and was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital. His death at 11:42 a.m. was confirmed by Mike Dowd, chief investigator for the medical examiner's office in Oakland County.

Schembechler became ill at the studios at WXYZ-TV in Southfield, the station said. He also became ill there and was hospitalized Oct. 20.

Police were sent to the station around 9:25 a.m. along with the city's fire department and escorted an ambulance to Providence Hospital, Southfield police spokesman John Harris said.

Schembechler met with the media earlier this week to discuss Saturday's big game.

During the news conference, he discussed the device that was implanted to regulate his heartbeat after he was hospitalized last month.

He said the device covered about half his chest and that doctors still were adjusting it.

Schembechler said he did not plan to attend the game in Columbus, Ohio, and that he didn't attend road games anymore.

Schembechler had a heart attack on the eve of his first Rose Bowl in 1970 and another one in 1987. He has had two quadruple heart-bypass operations.

The seven-time Big Ten coach of the year compiled a 194-48-5 record at Michigan from 1969-89. Schembechler's record in 26 years of coaching was 234-64-8.

Schembechler's Wolverines were 11-9-1 against the Buckeyes. But fans in both states generally agree that the rivalry's prime years were 1969-78, when Schembechler opposed his friend and coaching guru, Woody Hayes.
Ohio State prevailed in those meetings, going 5-4-1.

"It was a very personal rivalry," Earle Bruce, who succeeded Hayes as coach, once said. "And for the first and only time, it was as much about the coaches as it was about the game.

"Bo and Woody were very close because Bo played for Woody at Miami of Ohio, then coached with him at Ohio State. But their friendship was put on hold when Bo took the Michigan job because it was the protege against mentor."

Thirteen of Schembechler's Michigan teams either won or shared the Big Ten championship. Fifteen of them finished in The Associated Press Top 10, with the 1985 team finishing No. 2.

Seventeen of Schembechler's 21 Michigan teams earned bowl berths. Despite a .796 regular-season winning percentage, his record in bowls was a disappointing 5-12, including 2-8 in Rose Bowls.

The mythical national championship eluded Schembechler, but he said that never bothered him.

"If you think my career has been a failure because I have never won a national title, you have another thing coming," Schembechler said a few weeks before coaching his final game. "I have never played a game for the national title. Our goals always have been to win the Big Ten title and the Rose Bowl. If we do that, then we consider it a successful season."

His last game as Wolverines coach was a 17-10 loss to Southern California in the 1990 Rose Bowl. One week later, Schembechler -- who also had been serving as Michigan athletic director since July 1988 -- was named president of the Detroit Tigers.

...Coach Schembechler gets to watch it with Woody Hayes.

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.

I'm in a bit of a hurry, kiddies, so there will be no in-depth analysis this week. Just picks.


Sunday 11/19


Atlanta (+4) at Baltimore
Ravens.
FINAL: Ravens 24 Falcons 10 - Fyodor wins!


Buffalo (+2.5) at Houston
Bills.
FINAL: Bills 24 Texans 21 - Fyodor wins!

Chicago (-7) at NY Jets
Jets.
FINAL: Bears 10 Jets 0 - Fyodor loses! (Both Chad Pennington and Rex Grossman played like Rex Grossman.)


Cincinnati (+3) at New Orleans
Saints.
FINAL: Bengals 31 Saints 16 - Fyodor wins! (It's midnight, Cinderella.)


Minnesota (+3) at Miami
Dolphins.
FINAL: Dolphins 24 Vikings 20 - Fyodor wins!


New England (-6) at Green Bay
Patriots.
FINAL: Patriots 35 Packers 0 - Fyodor wins!


Oakland (+9.5) at Kansas City
Chiefs.
FINAL: Chiefs 17 Raiders 13 - Fyodor loses! (Ack!)


Pittsburgh (-3) at Cleveland
Steelers.
FINAL: Steelers 24 Browns 20 - Fyodor wins!



St. Louis (+6.5) at Carolina
Panthers.
FINAL: Panthers 15 Rams 0 - Fyodor wins!


Tennessee (+13) at Philadelphia
Titans.
FINAL: Titans 31 Eagles 13 - Fyodor wins! (The Eagles weren't going anywhere with McNabb, now...)


Washington (+3) at Tampa Bay
Buccaneers.
FINAL: Buccaneers 20 Redskins 17 - PUSH! (Uh, oh. I've got a bad feeling...)


Detroit (+2) at Arizona
Lions.
FINAL: Cardinals 17 Lions 10 - Fyodor loses! (D'oh!)


Seattle (-3.5) at San Francisco
Seahawks.
FINAL: 49ers 20 Seahawks 14 - Fyodor loses! (Either the 49ers are starting to turn things around, or the refs' fiendish plot to perpetually screw The Best Team Never To Win A Super Bowl continues apace...)


Indianapolis (-1) at Dallas
Colts.
FINAL: Cowboys 21 Colts 14 - Fyodor loses! (Drat!)


San Diego (+2.5) at Denver
Broncos.
FINAL: Chargers 35 Broncos 27 - Fyodor loses! (Ugh! NEVER bet a game in which Jake Plummer is playing, kiddies.)


Monday 11/20


NY Giants (+3.5) at Jacksonville
Giants.
FINAL: Jaguars 26 Giants 10 - Fyodor loses!

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.


I'm in a bit of a hurry, kiddies, so there will be no in-depth analysis this week. Just picks.


Friday 11/17


Central Michigan (-4) at Northern Illinois
Northern Illinois.
FINAL: NIU 31 CMU 10 - Fyodor wins! (I exited the bandwagon just in time.)


Saturday 11/18

Maryland (+8) at Boston College
Maryland.
FINAL: BC 38 Maryland 16 - Fyodor loses! (D'oh!)


Michigan State (+18) at Penn State
PSU.
FINAL: PSU 17 MSU 13 - Fyodor loses!


Oklahoma (-20.5) at Baylor
Oklahoma.
FINAL: Oklahoma 36 Baylor 10 - Fyodor wins!



Buffalo (+38) at Wisconsin
Wisconsin.
FINAL: Wisconsin 35 Buffalo 3 - Fyodor loses! (Ack!)



Indiana (+12.5) at Purdue
Indiana.
FINAL: Purdue 28 Indiana 19 - Fyodor wins!



Tennessee (-8) at Vanderbilt
Tennessee.
FINAL: Tennessee 39 Vandy 10 - Fyodor wins! (It's about time, Phil.)


Temple (+31.5) at Navy
Navy.
FINAL: Navy 42 Temple 6 - Fyodor wins!



UL Monroe (+19.5) at Kentucky
Kentucky.
FINAL: Kentucky 42 UL Monroe 40 (!!!) - Fyodor loses! (There is no excuse for giving up 40 to those guys, Wildcats. Ashley Judd and I are very disappointed.)



Duke (+24.5) at Georgia Tech
Georgia Tech.
FINAL: GT 49 Duke 21 - Fyodor wins!


Missouri (-13) at Iowa State
Missouri.
FINAL: Iowa State 21 Missouri 16 - Fyodor loses! (Iowa State and Oregon have killed me all year.)



Oklahoma State (+6) at Texas Tech
Texas Tech.
FINAL: Texas Tech 30 Oklahoma State 24 - PUSH!


Arkansas (-14.5) at Mississippi State
Arkansas.
FINAL: Arkansas 28 Mississippi State 14 - Fyodor loses! (Drat! The accursed hook, again! On the other hand, kiddies, that's why they call it gambling.)


Army (+31.5) at Notre Dame
Notre Dame.
FINAL: Notre Dame 41 Army 9 - Fyodor wins!



Kansas State (+2.5) at Kansas
Kansas.
FINAL: Kansas 39 Kansas State 20 - Fyodor wins! (Heehee!)



Michigan (+7) at Ohio State
Michigan, for Bo.
FINAL: Ohio State 42 Michigan 39 - Fyodor wins! (A great game, but let's all just say no to a rematch. Kudos to the OSU cheerleaders for the red sweaters (real sweaters!) an gray pleated skirts! Bellissima!)


Arizona (+14) at Oregon
Arizona.
FINAL: Arizona 37 Oregon 10 - Fyodor wins! (I finally got Oregon figured out.)


Auburn (-3) at Alabama
Auburn.
FINAL: Auburn 22 Alabama 15 - Fyodor wins!


San Diego State (+17.5) at Texas Christian
TCU.
FINAL: TCU 52 SDSU 0 - Fyodor wins! (Horned Frogs, baby!)


Washington (+8.5) at Washington State
State.
FINAL: Washington 35 Washington State 32 - Fyodor loses! (Who knew?)


Virginia Tech (EVEN) at Wake Forest
Wake.
FINAL: Virginia Tech 27 Wake Forest 6 - Fyodor loses! (Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!)


South Florida (+18) at Louisville
South Florida.
FINAL: Louisville 31 South Florida 8 - Fyodor loses! (Easy come, easy go.)


Utah (-1) at Air Force
Air Force.
FINAL: Utah 17 Air Force 14 - Fyodor loses! (Ouch!)



Rutgers (-6.5) at Cincinnati
Rutgers.
FINAL: Cincinnati 30 Rutgers 11 - Fyodor loses! (Memo To Rutgers: You still have to show up and play the games.)



California (+5.5) at USC
USC.
FINAL: USC 23 Cal 9 - Fyodor wins!



Mississippi at LSU
LSU.
FINAL: LSU 23 Mississippi 20 - Fyodor loses! (LSU has killed me all year, too.)


San Jose State (+25) at Hawaii
Hawaii.

FINAL: Hawaii 54 SJSU 17 - Fyodor wins! (Rainbow Warriors, baby!)

The coolest paraplegic ever.

I had never heard of Mr. Zupan until I heard him on Jim Rome's radio show this week.

I would like to think if I had the misfortune to be confined to a wheelchair, I would have an attitude similar to Mark's.

IGN: Interview: Mark Zupan (from July 2005)

Mark Zupan is definitely the coolest quadriplegic we know. Breaking his neck didn't stop him from becoming an Olympic competitor. Of course, it's the Paralympics and the sport is quadriplegic rugby, but when you see the film Murderball, you'll see that these guys could kick any able bodied athlete's ass.

Of course, he is a paraplegic, not a quadriplegic. Quadriplegics are paralyzed in both arms and both legs.

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Murderball is the original name for what is now called quadriplegic rugby. Players with limited use of all four limbs wheel their specially designed chairs into each other, trying to score goals. Zupan, the star player on the USA team, becomes the star of the movie with his charismatic bad boy persona.

"The first allure was always the contact," Zupan said of Murderball. "Where else can you hit somebody as hard as you possibly want to or can in a chair? I mean, that's been always the first thing that you sit there and say, 'Yeah, this is why.' The competitive aspect, I played college soccer before I was hurt, and just to be able to jump back into something that you could be so competitive at or you can achieve, to get to the Paralympics, that's the first really big achievement that you can have. It's the second biggest sporting event in the world. To be a part of it and to get a metal for that, it's unreal. I wouldn't have been on the Olympic team for soccer. I wasn't that good. I was fair. I had a good work ethic."

With such a full contact sport, there are inevitable injuries, but since he survived a broken neck, Zupan does not worry. "It's just like any other sport. The worst thing that I've done is I've broken a rib. You hit your head, that's fine. But it's nothing to worry about. It's just like if you wanted to play football or soccer. You may twist an ankle, you may hurt your knee. There's no real worry of getting reinjured."


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Zupan is quick to correct the assumption that a quadriplegic could not feel an injury anyway. "Not necessarily because your body reacts. I feel pain everywhere. A lot of guys in chairs do feel their legs. But if you don't, there's a thing called disreflex, so you know if something happens, say, you can't feel your foot or your leg and your body reacts. You know something's not right and you survey what's going on. You survey how you're sitting, if your feet are positioned properly, if you're sitting on something like a tack pinching you. So your body has a way of telling even though you can't feel it. You'll start sweating, because guys in chairs usually don't sweat, so if you start sweating, disreflexic reaction, you figure it out. It's just something that you learn."

It appears that little will dissuade Zupan from putting his body at risk. "There's no fear. I'm not scared of getting hurt. I'm not scared of pretty much anything. If you live your life scared, what's the fun in living it? To tell you the truth, if you were scared you were going to get hit by a car, would you cross the street? You've still got to cross the street to get from point A to point B. So being scared, no. Is this fun? Hell yeah, it's fun. It's changed my life."

Though Zupan and his Murderball teammates come off as a tough guys, the film strikes a balance between their achievements and the real tragedies of disability. The filmmakers follow a recently injured quadriplegic, Keith, and his journey through adjustment to eventually trying out for the rugby team. Zupan said that Keith represented the side of him that was long gone by the time filmmakers followed him with a camera.

"Keith is supposed to be a young me. That's the s**t we went through. They weren't filming 10 years ago to say, 'Look, this is some of the stuff that we've gone through and we've seen.' We're shown as these just guys that bust a** and what have you. To see Keith, just to see the s**t that goes through his head, the stuff that he sees, I think that associates yes, there's triumph but yeah, it was hard and it wasn't the easiest thing that we've ever dealt with. It's probably the most difficult thing. But once you come to grips with your accident or what you've gone through and are able to go and focus on something else, then you get to where we are today."

Murderball shows that not only can quadriplegics play sports, but they can also have sex and otherwise navigate the able bodied world. Zupan hopes the film erases "every misconception you ever had about somebody in a chair. I think this thing nails it. Look, I'm a normal person. Yes, we have sex, like to go out, hang out. We're normal people. Don't be scared because we are in a chair, that you think we're fragile or 'I can't talk to him, he's in a wheelchair.' Well, f***, it's just a wheelchair. People don't understand that. They think, 'Oh, wheelchair, something's wrong with their head,' just you're not right. Well yeah, we may be a little twisted, but no more than anyone else."

Here is Mr. Zupan's story:

Mark Zupan was born on May 20, 1975, in Cleveland, Ohio to Thomas and Linda Zupan. His father an entrepreneur, and his mother a professional businesswoman provided a comfortable upbringing for Mark and his younger brother Jeff.

Mark excelled both in academics and sports, playing varsity high school football and soccer. His soccer prowess earned him a scholarship to Florida Atlantic University (FAU). Mark was not alone when he registered at FAU. His best friend and football teammate, Chris Igoe also enrolled at FAU. They shared a dorm and embarked on all that college had to offer; sports, girls, and all the good times they could muster.

Mark played on the varsity soccer team where he lived up to his scholarship billing. On a cold wet Florida night on October 14, 1993, Mark and his team mates were celebrating at the college hangout, Dirty Moe's after trouncing a rival team. Chris was more then a spectator; Chris was a participant in the celebration.

Dirty Moe's aptly named for its remote location and dimly lit parking lot was packed that evening. Chris eventually went his own way to pursue other interests while Mark congregated with his team. Nickel beers and dollar shots were a Dirty Moe's tradition, which was not lost on team.
Around midnight, Mark wandered out of the establishment and found refuge in the bed liner of Chris's black pickup truck. Eventually Chris was asked to leave the premises and preceded home not knowing that Mark was nestled in the back of the truck.

Highway I-95 is notorious, but never more so then that fateful night. Chris's erratic driving was noticed by an off duty policemen and his girlfriend. They proceeded to follow close behind him all the way to a fence post, which eventually claimed Chris's truck.

For several hours after the accident the trailing policemen, tow truck driver and Florida highway patrol hovered around the ill-fated truck. No one saw Mark, including the policeman who had witnessed the accident.

For the next 14 hours, Mark's parents, friends, family and police thought the losing rival soccer team might have abducted Mark. It wasn’t until a passerby discovered Mark clinging to a branch in a canal, that the truth came to be discovered.

Marks story is one of survival. Mark's ordeal: surviving fourteen hours clinging to a branch for life, hypothermia and quadriplegia to become a Georgia Tech graduate, civil engineer, two time quad rugby national champion, 2004 quad rugby player of the year, world class Olympic quad rugby bronze medal winner, and spokesman for team USA all show what a positive mind can do. His story will be told in a forth-coming book and in motivational speeches by Mark and Chris delivered to college and industry campuses across the country.

http://www.myspace.com/halfmanhalfcar

The bottom line, kiddies? Mr. Zupan is a real man. When faced with adversity, he did what real men do. He persevered.

Bless and protect him, Lord.

DAY 86: PLUTO HELD HOSTAGE

February 4, 2007 is International Save Pluto Day!

Boston Globe: A push for Pluto

Goofy about Pluto


Michael Burstein of Brookline is one of the leaders of a guerilla movement to persuade the International Astronomical Union to give Pluto its full planetary status back. Their efforts will peak on Feb. 4 with International Save Pluto Day. On his Mabfan blog, Burstein writes:

"We're encouraging people to contact the IAU on or about that day, to make it clear how important Pluto is to all of us. If they receive a bunch of separate petitions or letters spread over the course of a year, it may not make an impression. But if they receive a slew of support in the space of a week, they'll definitely notice."

Here's a big surprise. They're in France.

IAU - INTERNATIONAL ASTRONOMICAL UNION / UAI - UNION ASTRONOMIQUE INTERNATIONALE

98bis Bd Arago, FR - 75014 Paris, FRANCE

Phone: +33 (1) 43 25 83 58
Fax: +33 (1) 43 25 26 16

Email: iau(@)iap.fr

The Vietnamization of Iraq continues apace.

The fix appears to be in, kiddies.

AP: Bush compares U.S. wars in Vietnam, Iraq

HANOI, Vietnam - President Bush, on his first visit to a country where America lost a two-decade-long fight against communism, said Friday the Vietnam War's lesson for today's confounding Iraq conflict is that freedom takes time to trump hatred.

Embracing a former enemy that remains communist but is allowing capitalism to surge, Bush opened a four-day stay here that was fueling an already raging debate over his war policy. Democrats who won control of Congress say last week's elections validate their call for U.S. troops to start coming home soon, while Bush argues — as he did again Friday — for patience with a mission he says can't be ended until Iraq can remain stable on its own.

They're allowing capitalism to surge, are they? How nice.

Just like Slave China...

A baby boomer who came of age during the turbulent Vietnam era and spent the war stateside as a member of the Texas Air National Guard, the president called himself amazed by the sights of the onetime war capital. He pronounced it hopeful that the United States and Vietnam have reconciled differences after a war that ended 31 years ago when the Washington-backed regime in Saigon fell.

"My first reaction is history has a long march to it, and societies change and relationships can constantly be altered to the good," Bush said after speeding past signs of both poverty and the commerce produced by Asia's fastest-growing economy.

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

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Today is the Feast of St. Elizabeth of Hungary, who was a princess, the daughter of King Andrew of Hungary and she was also the great-aunt of St. Elizabeth of Portugal. She married Prince Louis of Thuringa at age 13. She built a hospital at the foot of the mountain on which her castle stood and tended to the sick herself. Her family and courtiers opposed this, but she insisted she could only follow Christ's teachings, not theirs. Once, when she was taking food to the poor and sick, Prince Louis stopped her and looked under her mantle to see what she was carrying; the food had been miraculously changed to roses. Upon Louis' death, Elizabeth sold all that she had, and worked to support her four children. Her gifts of bread to the poor, and of a large gift of grain to a famine stricken Germany, led to her patronage of bakers and related fields. Pray for us, all you angels and saints.

Today's reading for the Feast of St. Elizabeth of Hungary is 1 John 3:14-18.
Today's Responsorial Psalm is
Psalms 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9, 10-11.
Today's Gospel reading is
Luke 6:27-38.


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.


Memorare

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."


Divine Praises

Blessed be God.
Blessed be His Holy Name.
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true Man.
Blessed be the Name of Jesus.
Blessed be His most Sacred Heart.
Blessed be His most Precious Blood.
Blessed be Jesus in the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy.
Blessed be her holy and Immaculate Conception.
Blessed be her glorious Assumption.
Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother.
Blessed be Saint Joseph, her most chaste spouse.
Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints.
May the Heart of Jesus in the most Blessed Sacrament
Be praised, adored and loved
With grateful affection at every moment
In all the tabernacles of the world
Even to the end of time. Amen.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Penguins Update.

The Pens are now 8-6-2, good for 18 points and a third place tie in the Atlantic Division, three points behind the Devils and the Rangers.

The Pens travel to Buffalo on Friday to take on the NHL's best team, the Sabres.

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

Judge sides with NHL in Malkin case
NEW YORK (AP) -- Evgeni Malkin was cleared to stay with the Pittsburgh Penguins after a federal judge denied a demand by his former Russian club that he be yanked from the NHL....

Ouellet skating fine lines

Pens' passing falls short of potential
The Penguins shoot less than almost any team in the NHL.

Steelers Update.

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

Brown: Polamalu plans to play vs. Browns
"I feel good," Troy Polamalu said after Wednesday's practice at the Steelers' South Side facility. "Good enough to go."

Browns motivated by Steelers' stomping

Browns' Droughns nursing sprained foot

Point, counterpoint: Steelers offense vs. defense

Brown: Steelers dismiss Browns' talk

Steelers notebook

With Parker, Steelers missing Bettis more as leader than runner

Steelers getting reacquainted with AFC North

Bettis, Betters plan Detroit complex

Prisuta: 'The game' has Steelers pumped up

Democrasses stab 'Mutha' in the back and pick a drink to lead them.

John "Mutha" Murtha (the Party of Blasphemy, Buggery, and 'Bortion's point man on running away from the war in Iraq because he once fought bravely for his country many decades ago) was soundly defeated today in his bid to become House Majority Leader by a "Steny Hoyer", which was a drink much favored by Dorothy Parker and her friends at the Algonquin Round Table - Stalinists all.

CQPolitics.com (I have no idea. - F.G.): Hoyer Easily Wins House Majority Leader Spot Over Murtha
Democratic Rep. Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland has been selected by the Democratic caucus to serve as Majority Leader in the 110th Congress, easily defeating Rep. John P. Murtha of Pennsylvania — who had been backed by incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California — on a 149-86 vote.

Here's how to make a Steny Hoyer:

Mix equal parts crab juice and bitters. Let stand in hot sun for no less than six hours.

Gore and Kerry are so role models.

AP: Loser in Congo election rejects results

KINSHASA, Congo - The loser in Congo's landmark presidential elections rejected the results Thursday, saying he would use all legal means to challenge the outcome from the war-battered Central African nation's first multiparty vote in decades.

Electoral officials announced Wednesday that President Joseph Kabila prevailed in a runoff against Jean-Pierre Bemba, a former rebel leader who became a vice president in the postwar, national-unity government that arranged the ballot meant to end decades of strife and corrupt rule.

Bemba, in his first comments since Kabila was announced the winner, said he wouldn't accept the results. He earlier had alleged massive voting fraud and his supporters say he won.

"I regret to inform our people and the international community that I cannot accept these results, which are far from respecting the truth of the ballot boxes," Bemba said.

Bemba, who led a rebel faction in years of back-to-back wars that ended in 2002, didn't say he would take up arms again, saying he would pursue legal channels to challenge the results showing Kabila with 58 percent of the votes to Bemba's 42 percent.

"I make the commitment to use all legal avenues to ensure the will of the people is respected," he said. He didn't elaborate. A legal challenge could be taken as high as the Supreme Court.

Amid fears of renewed gunbattles between supporters of the two candidates, U.N peacekeepers patrolled the streets of the Congolese capital and riot police arrested a handful of stone-throwing protesters Thursday.

Businessmen, fearing violence, kept their shops shuttered. Few vendors were on the streets, many workers stayed home, and most schools were closed until Monday. There were no traffic jams in the usually bustling capital.

In a televised address after being declared the winner, Kabila called for calm and said police and army troops were working to ensure security. Fighting between his troops and forces loyal to Bemba killed three civilians and a soldier Saturday.

"Peace must reign in every corner of the country. Long live democracy. Long live the new Democratic Republic of Congo," said Kabila, 35, who had inherited power in 2001 when his rebel leader father, Laurent Kabila, was assassinated by a bodyguard. "I ask you tonight to remain united and to live in fraternity and tolerance."

About a hundred U.N. troops in armored cars surrounded the residence of Bemba, who lives with hundreds of militiamen despite an agreement that all former rebels should be in barracks until they are integrated into the national army.

It is time for all decent Americans to emulate the good folks of Greenleaf, Idaho.

AP: Idaho town encourages residents to own guns

GREENLEAF, Idaho - After seeing the chaos of Hurricane Katrina, a city councilor in this tiny Idaho town founded by pacifist Quakers came up with a novel idea.

Ordinance 208, passed by the City Council on Tuesday, asks Greenleaf's 862 residents who do not object on religious or other grounds to keep a gun at home in case they are overrun by refugees from the Gulf Coast.

"This is not an 'it'll never happen here kind of thing,'" said Steven Jett, the ordinance's sponsor. "We could get refugees."

In this town about 35 miles west of Boise near the Oregon line — where an estimated 80 percent of the adults already own guns — the proposal hardly caused a stir: It went through weeks of public hearings and drew only mild criticism from the pastor of the town's Quaker meeting house.

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

Jett, whose father died in a hunting accident, said the ordinance is designed to enable residents to protect themselves, but it also gives the city a better platform from which to promote gun safety.

"The fact that Greenleaf supports the Second Amendment, we'll be able to keep the crime rate down," he said.

The thing is, Greenleaf doesn't really have crime. At least as most cities define it. The most violent offense reported in the past two years was a fist fight.

Still, Jett insists, the menace of high crime may be on the horizon.

Greenleaf is on the western fringe of Canyon County, a fast-growing suburb of Boise. As developers turn alfalfa rows into tract housing and hay bales into big box stores, Jett wants newcomers to know that criminals will not be "comfortable" in Greenleaf.

"We don't have a crime problem," he said. "But this area is going to grow and we're going to keep it that way."

Pastor Alan Weinacht originally opposed the ordinance because it conflicted with the Quaker teaching of nonviolence. Based on an unenforced 1982 law in Kennesaw, Ga., it originally require all homeowners to own and "maintain a firearm."

Silly quaker.

"It made owning a gun a basis of good citizenship," Weinacht said. "I don't know. It just seems we're slipping as a society into a culture of fear."

Fear is real, pastor, and so are its causes.

But then Weinacht, who owns several shotguns and rifles for hunting and target shooting, discussed the law with Jett. Jett softened the language and allowed for personal or religious exemptions.

On Tuesday, Weinacht, one of four residents to attend the council meeting, announced his support. "I want to be a team player," he told the mayor and four council members.

With that, the council approved the ordinance, with Councilor Clovis Strange joking that it had become "gutless."

Mayor Brad Holton, who owns about 25 rifles, laughed at the fact that Greenleaf's gun law had been put the town into the national media spotlight.

"It's been a wild ride," he said.

KISS sells out! Again.

I received one of those cologne sample envelopes in the mail yesterday. My hands trembled as my nostrils prepared to be assaulted by KISS Him.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Yes, kiddies, that KISS. 70's Supergroup KISS. Makeup and platform boots and all. $49.00 for 3.4 ounces.

I doubt Gene and the boys smelled like this after a couple of hours on stage. If that is what you seek, you will have to look elsewhere, you sick freak.

KISS Her is also available.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I managed to stop myself from opening that side of the envelope.

BONUS College Football Pick of the Day!

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 is my bonus college pick for this week.



Thursday 9/16


West Virginia (-11) at Pittsburgh
The Backyard Brawl has not been much of a fight lately, with the Mountaineers dominating the Panthers the last few years. Nothing should change tonight. Take WVU to cover.
FINAL: WVU 45 Pitt 27 - Fyodor wins! (Pitt played an inspired first half that included one of the most spectacular punt returns ever seen. Unfortunately, the game was comprised of two halves.)

The episcopal crackup continues apace.

Another small step in the journey back home, to Rome.

The Washington Times: Episcopal leaders vote to leave

Leaders of two of Virginia's most historic Episcopal parishes have voted to split from the Episcopal Church and the Diocese of Virginia, a move that could spark a legal battle over millions of dollars' worth of property.

The vestry -- or governing board -- of Truro Episcopal Church, an 18th-century church in downtown Fairfax, voted unanimously Saturday to depart from the 2.2-million-member Episcopal Church over questions of biblical authority and the 2003 consecration of New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson, an active homosexual.

Monday night, the vestry of the Falls Church, an equally historic Virginia congregation in the city of Falls Church, voted 15-2, with one abstention, to leave the Episcopal Church, a denomination it has called home for more than 200 years.

Its rector, the Rev. John Yates, called the process a series of "terribly hard decisions" in a Nov. 14 letter to church members. His church sits on $17 million worth of prime real estate; Truro's property is worth about $10 million.

Tom Wilson, senior warden of the Falls Church's vestry, pointed to a parish meeting this past Sunday as a defining moment.

"The message we got from the congregation was that sadly, the theological disconnect between biblical Christianity and the road the [Episcopal] Church had chosen to walk was so profound, the time had come to separate from the denomination," he said.

Jim Oakes, senior warden of Truro's vestry, said the congregation was asked not to applaud when the vestry's vote was announced during Sunday services.

Heehee. (Sorry.)

"This is not a cause for celebration," he said. "This is a time of sadness and resolve. We're asking the congregation to join with us in affirming the decision, but it's not a time of popping champagne corks."

The vestries' decisions must be ratified by a majority of each parish's members during a congregational vote the second week of December. However, the trend among conservatives in the 90,000-member Diocese of Virginia is not to stay. Last week, the vestry of All Saints' Episcopal Church in Woodbridge recommended their church also leave, and within the past year, three mission churches have split from the diocese.

Mr. Oakes said Truro's vestry informed Virginia Bishop Peter J. Lee of its decision Tuesday afternoon by phone. As for the bishop's reaction, "We had a candid conversation, we'll just leave it at that," the senior warden said.

The diocese released a short statement yesterday.

"We are very, very sad that the vestries are going to recommend to the congregations that they sever ties to the Episcopal Church," Bishop Lee said.

But when asked during a 2004 press conference how he'd respond to an exodus of some of the most valuable and historic properties in his diocese, he referred to a private letter he once wrote on the matter.

"I said that I believe that I had a responsibility to the Episcopalians of the past," he said, "who built the church, and to the Episcopalians of the future, who will use the church, not to stand by and let a current generation walk away with their property."

I believe this is symptomatic of a larger problem. The bishop comes across as a money-grubbing bureaucrat and not as a priest, while the breakaway congregations look like they are concerned with the salvation of souls. While I am sure the parishioners know full well the value of their properties, I doubt that is an overriding concern for them.

Representatives from both parishes and the diocese have had secret negotiations for the past year over how to conduct an amicable split. Although Mr. Yates' letter said a protocol had been agreed to by both sides, the diocese said yesterday no such agreement had been reached.

Truro and the Falls Church both intend to retain their property. The vestries have proposed joining the Anglican District of Virginia, a newly formed group of churches culled from the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia.

It will be led by the Rt. Rev. Martyn Minns, the rector of Truro who was consecrated Aug. 20 in Abuja, Nigeria, as a bishop with the Anglican Province of Nigeria. Currently, he leads a new group set up by the Nigerian province called the Convocation for Anglicans in North America (CANA).
The Anglican District of Virginia will be part of CANA. The group's offices are across the street from Truro and its Web site, www.canaconvocation.org, already has application forms for parishes to join up.

Come home to Rome, kiddies. There is always a Light on for you...

Religion of Inferiority Complexes Gone Wild Update.

Iraqi Researcher Living in Europe on Al-Jazeera TV: The Nobel Peace Prize is Racist; 'Why Has the Prize Been Awarded to 167 Jews and Only 4 Arabs... All Considered Traitors?'; The Prize Stems from the Protocols of the Elders of Zion

MEMRI
November 16, 2006 - No.1359 http://memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD135906

The following are excerpts from an interview with Samir 'Ubeid, an Iraqi researcher living in Europe, which aired on Al-Jazeera TV on October 31, 2006.

TO VIEW THIS CLIP VISIT: http://www.memritv.org/search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=1313


Samir 'Ubeid: "I don’t call it the Nobel Prize - I call it the hubal [idol] prize."

Interviewer: "Hubal?"

Samir 'Ubeid: "Yes, because it often encourages heresy. It encourages attacks against the heritage, and encourages those who scorn their people and their culture. The proof is that it was awarded recently to Pamuk, who had encouraged civil strife, which might preoccupy Turkey and the Muslims in general. He held Turkey responsible for what the Ottoman state did, when he referred to the massacre of the Armenians."

[...]

Interviewer: "In other words, if you are a traitor to your country, you deserve this prize."

Samir 'Ubeid: "If you are a traitor to your country, and a heretic, who curses his Prophet, you deserve a Nobel Prize.

[...]

"Why has the prize been awarded to 167 Jews, and to only four Arabs out of 380 million Arabs - and all four are considered traitors? For example, Al-Sadat got the prize during the normalization process, and as a price for Camp David, together with Begin, who carried out the Deir Yassin massacre, and who was in the Hagana gangs. Later, the prize was awarded to [Ahmad] Al-Zewail, in order to buy his invention, and Al-Zewail has disappeared since."

Interviewer: "You mean the Egyptian Ahmad Al-Zewail?"

Samir 'Ubeid: "Yes, the Egyptian chemist. The prize was also awarded to Muhammad ElBaradei, and in this case, it is soaked in the blood of the Iraqi children and people.

[...]

"Mother Teresa was brought, along with a group of people like her…"
Interviewer: "Some say the prize was awarded to her for her missionary activity in Africa, India, and so on..."

Samir 'Ubeid: "Let’s assume she was righteous, according to the logic of the media, which is now controlled by the Jews and Hollywood. When they awarded the prize to Teresa, they were trying to award an 'artificial hymen' or 'artificial honor' to this prize.

"My colleague said that there is democracy. What democracy is there, if out of 1.5 billion Chinese, only two or three were awarded the Nobel? If you examine the Russian scientists and writers, who shook the world with their literature and their knowledge...

"What about Sakharov, what about Tolstoy? In addition..."

Interviewer: "But Sakharov was awarded the Nobel prize."

Samir 'Ubeid: "I meant Chekhov. Chekhov! Chekhov!

[...]

"Are we Arabs not included in the transfer of the scientific genetic code? We, the descendants of Al-Khawarizmi, Al-Jahez, Al-Razi, Avicenna, and Ibn Al-Haytham - are we all born idiots? Is there not a single scientist among us? Are we not included in the genetic code? Is intelligence not transferred down among us Arabs?"

Interviewer: "Scientific creativity occurs in freedom and democracy, brother."

Samir 'Ubeid: "Democracy does not explain how it was awarded to 167 Jews, from among those 15 million scattered around the world, while abandoning 1.5 billion Chinese, a billion Indians, and 380 million Arabs. This is racism.

[...]

"The [Grameen] bank for the poor won the prize because some of its shareholders are giants like Haliburton and others.

[...]

"They infiltrated this bank, which came to be in the pocket of the Freemasons. This prize stems from the core of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion." (Thanks to FrontPage magazine and discoverthenetworks.org for the heads up.)

The Michael and Cathryn Borden Memorial Book of the Day.*

Mr. Beck also spoke to a Lebanese Christian woman who for many years suffered the depradations of the goat rapists, Brigitte Gabriel. Needless to say, she does not think too highly of the Religion of Peace and Love and Perpetual Outrage.

Because They Hate: A Survivor of Islamic Terror Warns America
by Brigitte Gabriel

From FrontPage magazine:

[Editor's Note: Below are selected excerpts from Brigitte Gabriel's speech delivered at the Intelligence Summit in Washington DC, Saturday February 18, 2006].

We gather here today to share information and knowledge. Intelligence is not merely cold hard data about numerical strength or armament or disposition of military forces. The most important element of intelligence has to be understanding the mindset and intention of the enemy. The West has been wallowing in a state of ignorance and denial for thirty years as Muslim extremist perpetrated evil against innocent victims in the name of Allah.

I was ten years old when my home exploded around me, burying me under the rubble and leaving me to drink my blood to survive, as the perpetrators shouted “Allah Akbar!” My only crime was that I was a Christian living in a Christian town. At 10 years old, I learned the meaning of the word "infidel."

I had a crash course in survival. Not in the Girl Scouts, but in a bomb shelter where I lived for seven years in pitch darkness, freezing cold, drinking stale water and eating grass to live. At the age of 13 I dressed in my burial clothes going to bed at night, waiting to be slaughtered. By the age of 20, I had buried most of my friends--killed by Muslims. We were not Americans living in New York, or Britons in London. We were Arab Christians living in Lebanon.

As a victim of Islamic terror, I was amazed when I saw Americans waking up on September 12, 2001, and asking themselves "Why do they hate us?" The psychoanalyst experts were coming up with all sort of excuses as to what did we do to offend the Muslim World. But if America and the West were paying attention to the Middle East they would not have had to ask the question. Simply put, they hate us because we are defined in their eyes by one simple word: "infidels."

Under the banner of Islam "la, ilaha illa allah, muhammad rasoulu allah," (None is god except Allah; Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah) they murdered Jewish children in Israel, massacred Christians in Lebanon, killed Copts in Egypt, Assyrians in Syria, Hindus in India, and expelled almost 900,000 Jews from Muslim lands. We Middle Eastern infidels paid the price then. Now infidels worldwide are paying the price for indifference and shortsightedness.

Tolerating evil is a crime. Appeasing murderers doesn't buy protection. It earns one disrespect and loathing in the enemy's eyes. Yet apathy is the weapon by which the West is committing suicide. Political correctness forms the shackles around our ankles, by which Islamists are leading us to our demise.

America and the West are doomed to failure in this war unless they stand up and identify the real enemy: Islam. You hear about Wahabbi and Salafi Islam as the only extreme form of Islam. All the other Muslims, supposedly, are wonderful moderates. Closer to the truth are the pictures of the irrational eruption of violence in reaction to the cartoons of Mohammed printed by a Danish newspaper. From burning embassies, to calls to butcher those who mock Islam, to warnings that the West be prepared for another holocaust, those pictures have given us a glimpse into the real face of the enemy. News pictures and video of these events represent a canvas of hate decorated by different nationalities who share one common ideology of hate, bigotry and intolerance derived from one source: authentic Islam. An Islam that is awakening from centuries of slumber to re-ignite its wrath against the infidel and dominate the world. An Islam which has declared "Intifada" on the West.

America and the West can no longer afford to lay in their lazy state of overweight ignorance. The consequences of this mental disease are starting to attack the body, and if they don't take the necessary steps now to control it, death will be knocking soon. If you want to understand the nature of the enemy we face, visualize a tapestry of snakes. They slither and they hiss, and they would eat each other alive, but they will unite in a hideous mass to achieve their common goal of imposing Islam on the world.

This is the ugly face of the enemy we are fighting. We are fighting a powerful ideology that is capable of altering basic human instincts. An ideology that can turn a mother into a launching pad of death. A perfect example is a recently elected Hamas official in the Palestinian Territories who raves in heavenly joy about sending her three sons to death and offering the ones who are still alive for the cause. It is an ideology that is capable of offering highly educated individuals such as doctors and lawyers far more joy in attaining death than any respect and stature, life in society is ever capable of giving them.

The United States has been a prime target for radical Islamic hatred and terror. Every Friday, mosques in the Middle East ring with shrill prayers and monotonous chants calling death, destruction and damnation down on America and its people. The radical Islamists’ deeds have been as vile as their words. Since the Iran hostage crisis, more than three thousand Americans have died in a terror campaign almost unprecedented in its calculated cruelty along with thousands of other citizens worldwide. Even the Nazis did not turn their own children into human bombs, and then rejoice at their deaths as well the deaths of their victims. This intentional, indiscriminate and wholesale murder of innocent American citizens is justified and glorified in the name of Islam.

America cannot effectively defend itself in this war unless and until the American people understand the nature of the enemy that we face. Even after 9/11 there are those who say that we must “engage” our terrorist enemies, that we must “address their grievances”. Their grievance is our freedom of religion. Their grievance is our freedom of speech. Their grievance is our democratic process where the rule of law comes from the voices of many not that of just one prophet. It is the respect we instill in our children towards all religions. It is the equality we grant each other as human beings sharing a planet and striving to make the world a better place for all humanity. Their grievance is the kindness and respect a man shows a woman, the justice we practice as equals under the law, and the mercy we grant our enemy. Their grievance cannot be answered by an apology for who or what we are.

Our mediocre attitude of not confronting Islamic forces of bigotry and hatred wherever they raised their ugly head in the last 30 years, has empowered and strengthened our enemy to launch a full scale attack on the very freedoms we cherish in their effort to impose their values and way of life on our civilization.

If we don't wake up and challenge our Muslim community to take action against the terrorists within it, if we don't believe in ourselves as Americans and in the standards we should hold every patriotic American to, we are going to pay a price for our delusion. For the sake of our children and our country, we must wake up and take action. In the face of a torrent of hateful invective and terrorist murder, America’s learning curve since the Iran hostage crisis is so shallow that it is almost flat. The longer we lay supine, the more difficult it will be to stand erect.

*Huh? Look here.

And now, a word from a moderate mohammedan...

Glenn Beck interviewd Dr. Aslam Abdullah last night. Dr. Abdullah is director of the Islamic Society of Nevada and below is his beat-down of the religion-stealing goat rapists the two men discussed.

Radical Muslims not worthy of the religion
By ASLAM ABDULLAH

The leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, Abu Hamza al-Muhajer, recently issued a decree to its supporters: Kill at least one American in the next two weeks "using a sniper rifle, explosive or whatever the battle may require."

Well, Abu Hamza al-Muhajer, I am an American too. Count me as the one of those you have asked your supporters to kill.

A-men to that, Brother!

Bless and protect him and his family, Lord.

I am not alone, there are thousands of Muslims with me in Las Vegas, and many more millions in America, who are proud Americans and who are ready to face your challenge. You hide in your caves and behind the faces of civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq. You don't show your faces and you have no guts to face Muslims. You thrive on the misery of thousands of Muslim youth and children who are victims of despotism, poverty and ignorance.

During the past two decades, you have brought nothing but shame and disaster to your religion and your world.

You said you "invite you not to drop your weapons, and don't let your souls or your enemies rest until each one of you kills at least one American within a period that does not exceed 15 days with a sniper's gunshot or incendiary devices or Molotov cocktail or a suicide car bomb -- whatever the battle may require." I invite you to surrender, to seek forgiveness from God almighty for the senseless killing you and your supporters are involved in and repent for everything you have done.

Amen to all that! (Brother Aslam is on a serious roll, kiddies.)

You say that the word of God is the highest. Yes, it is. But you are not worthy of it. You have abandoned God and you have started worshipping your own satanic egos that rejoice at the killing of innocent people. You don't represent Muslims or, for that matter, any decent human being who believes in the sanctity of life. Many among us American Muslims have differences with our administration on domestic and foreign issues, just like many other Americans do. But the plurality of opinions does not mean that we deprive ourselves of the civility that God demands from us. America is our home and will always be our home. Its interests are ours, and its people are ours. When you talk of killing of Americans, you first have to kill 6 million or so Muslims who will stand for every American's right to live and enjoy the life as commanded by God.

Golly, this Dr. Abdullah is a real mensch!

By growing a beard, shouting some religious slogans and misquoting and misusing some verses of the divine scriptures, you cannot incite Muslims to do things that are contrary to our religion. Yes, you even fail to understand the basic Islamic principles of life and living. Islam demands peace in all aspects of life, Islam demands respect for life. Islam demands justice.

Take that, you stinking goat rapists!

What you are doing in Iraq, Afghanistan, India or other parts of the world is anti-human and anti-divine. You are an enemy of Islam as much as you are an enemy of America. You must understand that God who entrusted you with life is the same God who spelled his spirit in every human being regardless of his or her religion or ethnicity or nationality or status. You are violating him.

If we were living in a more robust age, I would advocate the formation of an American Islamic Legion drawn from the ranks of our six million mohammedan-American neighbors. The Legion would be trained and equipped by American tax dollars and it would be sent to liberate one mohammedan nation after another, starting with our "ally", Saudi Arabia.

Sadly, we are not living in such an age...

We feel totally disgusted with your action and we condemn you without any reservation. Don't come to our mosques to preach this hatred. Don't visit our Islamic centers to spill the blood of innocents. Don't think that just because we share the same religion, we would show some sympathy to you. You are not of us. You don't belong to the religion whose followers are trying to live a peaceful life for themselves and others serving the divine according to their understanding. In our understanding of faith, you appear as anti-divine and anti-human. We reject you now as we rejected you yesterday.

There is nothing common between you and us.

We stand for life, you want to destroy it.

We accept the divine scheme of diversity in the world and you want to impose conformity.

We respect every human being simply because he or she is a creation of the divine, and you hate people based on their religion and ethnicity.
We support freedom and liberty and justice, and you promote bigotry, murder and strangulation.

You will never be able to find a sympathetic voice amidst us. Our differences with others will never lead us to do things that are fundamentally wrong in our faith, i. e. taking the lives of innocent people and killing others because they are different.

So on Sept. 11, when you will be hiding in your caves, we will be out in the streets paying tribute to those who you killed because you failed to see the beauty of life. We will condemn you once again the same way we have been doing ever since 9/11 because we are Muslim Americans. (Thanks to the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Glenn Beck for the heads up.)

Pray for Dr. Abdullah and all men of good will, kiddies. The decent practitioners of Islam are not just battling common heretics in their ranks. They are battling satanic death-worshippers who claim the One, True God is a god of Death. Their enemy is our enemy!

God bless Glenn Beck!

Glenn is now officially Fyodor's Favorite Mormon! (Replacing the QB on BYU's football team who helped me beat the spread the last time I picked the Cougars.)

If you did not
see his show last night on Headline News, shame on you.

Mr. Beck let the goat raping non-moderate mohammedans' words speak for themselves, and boy, did they speak volumes. I haven't been this pissed off by tv programming since I stopped watching most of it.

He started off with a clip from a tv series somewhere in mohammedom that portrayed Jews stealing the eyes of a little mohammedan girl so they could sell them...

Since I try to keep my little idiot corner of Bloggerdom freer of profanity than Charlie Weis on gameday, I will not type what I was yelling at the widescreen HD set last night.


Thankfully, Glenn did have some good news...

DAY 85: PLUTO HELD HOSTAGE

Saint of the Day and daily Mass readings.

Today is the Feast of St. Gertrude, a virgin and Benedictine nun. She is the patroness of the West Indies. Pray for us, all you angels and saints.


Today's reading for the Feast of St. Gertrude is
Ephesians 3:14-19.
Today's Responsorial Psalm is
Psalms 23:1-3, 4, 5, 6.
Today's Gospel reading is
John 15:1-8.


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.


Memorare

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."


Divine Praises

Blessed be God.
Blessed be His Holy Name.
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true Man.
Blessed be the Name of Jesus.
Blessed be His most Sacred Heart.
Blessed be His most Precious Blood.
Blessed be Jesus in the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy.
Blessed be her holy and Immaculate Conception.
Blessed be her glorious Assumption.
Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother.
Blessed be Saint Joseph, her most chaste spouse.
Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints.
May the Heart of Jesus in the most Blessed Sacrament
Be praised, adored and loved
With grateful affection at every moment
In all the tabernacles of the world
Even to the end of time. Amen.

About Me

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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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