Posts by CutePuppy

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  • Russian ruble weakens as traders see no major measures in Putin speech

    12/18/2014 9:31:56 AM PST · 14 of 21
    CutePuppy to AU72; elhombrelibre; Grampa Dave; All
    A wartime President would be doing everything to keep the price of oil down to send these countries reeling and force Cuba to our terms.

    Exactly, that's the real point of this "humanitarian" gesture, that has been missed by most observers and commenters. It has nothing to do with the policy "not working" (what does that even mean? If embargo is not "working" how was it supposed to "work" and why did Cuba, which trades with many other Western countries desperately wanted it to end?)

    The capo di tutti capi, the Czar of all czars Obama noticed that despite his best efforts to keep oil and gas prices up, the energy market has done so much damage to Russia (and Iran), the main benefactor of rogue and socilaist regimes in this world that he had to bail them out, by trumpeting that the "evil" past and current policies of the USA are "not working" and for "humanitarian" reasons he will simply override them, by creating his own, "legacy"-making one.

  • Obama To Unilaterally Normalize Relations With Cuba

    12/18/2014 1:22:26 AM PST · 49 of 70
    CutePuppy to logic101.net; All
    But then again that is his specialty; creating chaos. He has been taking (please excuse the spelling) Clowerd-Pivon to new heights.

    He has Cloward-Piven ("Overwhelm the system!") written all over him. This is going to be one of his "weekly crisis" sessions.

    So in the 2 years remaining of his "doing time" we are looking at about 50-100 new crises — by its nature, it's very difficult for Congress to formulate and make a timely and appropriate response to an avalanche of "executive actions" ...

  • Obama To Unilaterally Normalize Relations With Cuba

    12/18/2014 1:05:52 AM PST · 48 of 70
    CutePuppy to tet68; Kaslin; All

    So, is the Ebola “epidemic” now officially over, by reason of outliving its usefulness as a distraction?

  • $524,403 Gov’t Study Examines Link Between Diabetes and Lesbian, Bisexual Women

    12/17/2014 12:58:30 AM PST · 15 of 15
    CutePuppy to Morgana; Olog-hai
    Why?

    Too much sugar, milk and cookies?

  • UN Chief: More Countries Will Recognize 'Palestine'

    11/24/2014 6:46:04 PM PST · 15 of 19
    CutePuppy to publius911

    What “Palestinian” leaders and many others understand is that if “Palestine” is recognized as a state, it almost immediately stops the special “UN refugee status” to which PA owes their existence and “donations” / “support” money, which are unaccountable - just ask Suha Arafat.

    The Palestinian tax base is minuscule, and much of it is derived from the Palestinians who work at Israeli factories or other enterprises.

    So they can talk a good game about “independent state” and “occupation,” but financially it would be a disaster for PA and the step down for the people who live there.

  • UN Chief: More Countries Will Recognize 'Palestine'

    11/24/2014 6:31:23 PM PST · 14 of 19
    CutePuppy to Eleutheria5
    Ban Ki-moon: "The mindless cycle of destruction must end. The virtuous circle of peace must begin."

    It would be nice if the cycle of stupidity has ended and the cycle of reason has begun... but it seems we are long way off from that day.

  • Japan in recession as economy contracts 1.6 pct

    11/17/2014 5:32:34 PM PST · 5 of 5
    CutePuppy to BlackVeil

    “Unfortually” = unfortunately. Sorry for the typo.

  • Japan in recession as economy contracts 1.6 pct

    11/17/2014 5:28:41 PM PST · 4 of 5
    CutePuppy to BlackVeil
    Very disappointing news, and against predictions.

    Unfortunately, it was not only entirely predictable, but virtually certain, due to drastic, though well advertised in advance, sales tax increase from 5% to 8% in April, and the prospect of another increase to 10% next year (now virtually guaranteed to be rescinded or delayed) — contrary to analysis by most economists and financial "experts" who were probably too drunk watching Nikkei 225 rising to hit seven-year high.

    Unfortually, what Abe and Aso are doing to fight the three decades-long cycles of deflation and recessions is nearly classic Keynesian "solution" to the government-created in the first place Keynesian problem - more debt-accruing fiscal and monetary stimulus from the government, and austerity regime for the people (quite similar to what's going on in the most of EU countries).

    Sharp broad tax increase with a (finally) a whiff of low inflation combined with the stagnant wages had a very predictable effect on the economy. Abenomics needs adjustment, hayai (車い) .

  • Free Republic’s Thoughts on the 2014 Election and the Road Ahead [FReepathon thread XXXIV]

    11/05/2014 9:23:13 AM PST · 58 of 469
    CutePuppy to Viennacon; onyx; All

    Another midterm “shellacking” on a low turnout day.

    Definite rejection of Obama “policies that were on the ballot” rather than broad embrace of the party running without any agenda or action plan.

    Better than could have been expected (based on some polls) but worse than could have been hoped (NH and VA were definitely winnable but got away) and so many “reliably conservative” (presidential) states had Democrats in competitive races that should not have even be in the picture.

    Definitely no “positive mandate” (Republicans didn’t run on one) but plenty of “negative mandate” to oppose Obama on every policy issue, specifically including immigration.

    Hopefully even the dumber, the dumberer and the dumbest in the Stupid Party understand that.

  • Marijuana profits up in smoke under ITS rules [link only]

    11/04/2014 5:25:56 PM PST · 16 of 109
    CutePuppy to ThePatriotsFlag; grundle; nascarnation
    Marijuana tax/sin/protection money is the opium for politicians and lawyers.
  • Dems Turn to Clintons, Not Obama

    11/02/2014 12:15:16 AM PDT · 34 of 35
    CutePuppy to spacejunkie2001

    How many ‘could’ we win, not just likely but surprises?


    Look at this 2014 elections map: http://www.investors.com/image/FPchart_141031.png

    Hopefully, all 8 “greens” + Arkansas (a likely pickup) + an outside chance of 1 or even 2 “blue” surprises would give some safety net for a tough 2016 cycle (when GOP will have to defend 24 seats)

  • A desperate Mary Landrieu smears the state she represents

    11/01/2014 11:43:22 PM PDT · 55 of 61
    CutePuppy to RipSawyer

    If memory serves me correctly, South Carolina didn’t vote for Herman Cain in 2012 GOP primary. In January of 2012 that vote went to Newt Gingrich, while Herman Cain has already dropped out of the presidential race in early December 2011 (and it was not because of his glib and flashy but poorly thought out and shallow 9-9-9 campaign plan).

    However, South Carolina Republicans have proved that they are “racist” when they elected Tim Scott to serve in Congress, first in the House of Representatives in 2010 and 2012, and is currently the only black U.S. Senator (and first from The South since Reconstruction) after being appointed to replace retired Jim DeMint in 2013.

    It doesn’t get any more “racist” than that, does it?

  • Peak Ebola? Even Goldman Is Now Warning About The Ebola Fear Factor

    10/17/2014 9:23:59 PM PDT · 10 of 10
    CutePuppy to Morgana
    The will be — and probably already are — far more people in the U.S. getting sick from watching endless and breathless "Deadly Ebola Crisis" coverage than there will ever be actual ebola patients, much less dying from it.

    So far, the most tangible result of the "ebola scare" has been that the U.S. has added one more "czar" to her list of other unelected "czars."

    This manufactured "crisis" has at least 3000 of our troops (now affectionally known as Obama's "boots on the ground") "fighting" ebola outbreak in Liberia / West Africa, while ISIS and other al-Qaeda offshoots are taking over entire countries and their natural resources, such as oil, as well as their banks, military equipment and "formerly non-existent" WMDs in the Middle East where there is no "war" (just unnamed military kinetic action) and therefore no "boots on the ground" are present because they supposedly aren't needed to win a non-war.

    Why are people so easily distracted from critically important things and events that will have a long-term, lasting consequences, and detour into easily resolved relatively inconsequential ones?

  • ABC Medical Expert: ‘Very Real Possibility’ U.S. Soldier Contracts Ebola

    10/12/2014 8:22:23 PM PDT · 46 of 47
    CutePuppy to null and void

    Sorry, Clinton was and is a malignant sociopath and a narcissist - just about any of his appearances on TV prove that beyond reasonable doubt.

    We just don’t remember it all that well because the current megalonarcissist and malignant sociopath occupying White House make faded memories of Clinton look benign only by comparison.

    While Clinton cared enough about people liking him either personally or professionally - to save his job and perks - Obama simply doesn’t care about either, as long as he can advance his agenda, armed with only “a phone and a pen”, if necessary.

  • Dear White People: 3 Acts Of Casual Racism That You May Be Guilty Of Doing

    10/12/2014 7:58:57 PM PDT · 80 of 82
    CutePuppy to PATRIOT1876
    Genius is limited. Stupid people who find racism where there is none is not.

    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits"

    "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former" - Albert Einstein

    "True genius is knowing when to stop" - Johann von Goethe

    "A man's got to know his limitations" - 'Dirty Harry Callahan'

  • President Obama at Gwyneth Paltrow Fundraiser..

    10/09/2014 9:51:38 PM PDT · 36 of 44
    CutePuppy to Jane Long; exit82; GrandJediMasterYoda
    Ride, I used to jump my horse and ride
    I had a six gun at my side
    I was so handsome, women cried
    And I got shot but I never died.

    I could play, if I do every thing he'd say
    Girls seem to just get in his way
    Those days we weren't considered fun
    A cowboy's work is never done.

    He'd fight crime all the time, he'd always win
    Till his mom would break it up and call him in
    Now he was tough, he was hard but he was kind
    And he was loved 'cause guys like him were hard to find...

    "A Cowboy's Work Is Never Done" by Sonny Bono.

  • Newt Gingrich : 2014-09-10 : 10 Questions for Obama on ISIS

    09/12/2014 5:13:21 AM PDT · 9 of 10
    CutePuppy to GeorgiaSuzy; Patton@Bastogne; All
    "Prophet of Doom is the best-documented, most comprehensive, presentation of Islam's five oldest and most reliable scriptural sources. Ishaq's Biography of Muhammad, Tabari's History of Islam, and Bukhari's and Muslim's Hadith, were used to reorder the Qur'an chronologically and to set its surahs into the context of Muhammad's life..."

    Prophet of Doom: Islam's Terrorist Dogma in Muhammad's Own Words

  • Breaking: TURKEY REFUSES OBAMA REQUEST to Use Its Airbases to Fight ISIS

    09/12/2014 2:32:19 AM PDT · 178 of 214
    CutePuppy to Fast Moving Angel
    We had a poster with slightly different version of the same:

      We the unwilling
      Led by the unqualified
      Have been doing the unbelievable
      For the unknowing
      For so long
      With so little
      That the ungrateful now want us
      To do the impossible
      With nothing.
  • Newt Gingrich : 2014-07-23 : Obama’s Attack on Israel

    07/26/2014 2:01:22 AM PDT · 21 of 21
    CutePuppy to Patton@Bastogne; Westbrook; RedHeeler; Joe 6-pack; ImJustAnotherOkie; Toespi; All
      How could Newt, "make the biggest mistake of his life." ??? Is or was he a naïve child, overwhelmed by wolves of disinformation?

      Not only because of his personal life, but because of that global warming ad with him and Nancy Pelosi on a loveseat telling us how important it is to tax us into penury in order to stop the make-believe global warming bogey man.

    Actually, oversimplified and not quite accurate description of what happened. Newt is often "lost in translarion" and quite often "cuts his losses" — does not bother to waste time explaining to those who don't understand or are "invested in not understanding" what he says or does — which in politics could be less than optimal.

    What really happened is much more prosaic, but does explain "the dumbest thing I've done in recent years" statement, which refers not to his attempt to wrest the "green" / "environmental" issues from near-exclusive province of Democratic Party, but to the political aftermath of the ad photo repeatedly posted as the "proof" that he is the AGW Global Warming advocate and believer. In politics, taking chances to do something productive rather than just talking party line is seldom rewarded.

    From Pelosi Fires back at Gingrich - FR, post #9, by untwist, 2014 January 08

      ..... Newt made a mistake sitting down with Nancy, but he never bought into the Pelosi / Obama Cap and Trade model. The leftist model was based on huge penalties and bankrupting localities with taxes if they do not move on the federal govt's demands. Gingrich favored a business incentive, tax-break driven model for companies that invest in green energy.

      He was snookered by the left who wanted to use him for leverage to push their wild plans. He agreed in principle to invest in alternative energy. He never was in line with Pelosi's model for strong-handed leftist coercion. This is what has not been explained properly.

    From Pelosi Fires back at Gingrich - FR, post #27; 2014 January 08

      ..... Newt keeps trying to co-opt the "green movement" so it would become easier to promote more of real "alternative" sources of energy (like nuclear) instead of cap-and-trade and "carbon taxes." Co-opt the "green" movement and propose investing in cheaper and cleaner domestic sources of energy, contrast it with the pain of expense, scarcity and loss of mobility and freedom of Gore / Pelosi / Kerry liberal "solutions" and then the real goals of phony "green environmentalists" - money from taxes and expensive wind/solar energy - are gone ... and with the money, a movement itself will fail or join Republicans. Defunding by co-opting (instead of "cooperating" with them in their goals) was the real goal of Newt getting into the arena ..... < snip >

      ..... Meanwhile, Gingrich's staff balked at what Gore's Alliance for Climate Protection wanted the former speaker to say in the ad. They refused to clear the words "crisis" to describe climate change or for him to say — "We need new laws" — to address it ..... < snip >

      ..... "We rejected the initial script because it stated positions that we just didn't believe were true," said Tyler. "They wanted Newt to basically talk about global warming, which we would not do. At the time, 'climate change' was seen as a safe thing to say." ..... < snip >

      ..... About a month after the commercial began airing, Gingrich's now defunct political action group, American Solutions for Winning the Future, began its own advertising campaign — a pro- oil "Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less," mantra aimed at blocking legislation co-sponsored by Senators Joseph I. Lieberman, a Connecticut independent, and John Warner, a Virginia Republican, to combat climate change by curbing carbon emissions. ..... < snip >

    Other facts debunking the multitude of myths about Gingrich are in these links / references, for those who are really interested, so here are some myth-busters (some posts contain links and references within them, so please forgive repetition) :

    Refs :
    Gingrich: If it comes to a shutdown, the GOP should stick to its principles - FR, post #104, 2012 February 12

    Gingrich admits ABC claim was false [Politico] - FR, post #32 / WSJ, No-Fault Newt, by James Taranto, 2012 January 20

    "Cain/Gingrich 2012"? - FR, posts #64, #69, 2011 October 06

    'Stop Romney' Christian conservatives give nod to Santorum ahead of S.C. balloting - FR, posts #67, #19, 2012 January 15

    To Newt Gingrich haters (vanity) - FR, posts #1, #122, 2012 April 13

    Gingrich: The challenge confronting Republicans - FR, posts #1, #2, #26, #81, 2012 December 24

    Gingrich urges U.S. Republicans to move beyond Obama opposition - FR, posts #59, #60, 2013 August 15

    Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference? - FR, posts #14, #17, 2014 May 18

    Gingrich's Secret Weapon: Newt Inc. - FR, posts #1, #2, #14, 2012 January 25

    Does Ryan Now Agree with Gingrich? [And now, here's the rest of the story] - FR, posts #43, 2012 February 18

    Reagan Had the Recipe for Success. Let's Follow It (Newt Gingrich in WSJ) - FR / WSJ, posts #1, #17, #19, 2012 December 29

  • Newt Gingrich : 2014-07-23 : Obama’s Attack on Israel

    07/26/2014 1:57:44 AM PDT · 20 of 21
    CutePuppy to Patton@Bastogne; Westbrook; RedHeeler; Joe 6-pack; ImJustAnotherOkie; Toespi; All
      How could Newt, "make the biggest mistake of his life." ??? Is or was he a naïve child, overwhelmed by wolves of disinformation?

      Not only because of his personal life, but because of that global warming ad with him and Nancy Pelosi on a loveseat telling us how important it is to tax us into penury in order to stop the make-believe global warming bogey man.

    Actually, oversimplified and not quite accurate description of what happened. Newt is often "lost in translarion" and quite often "cuts his losses" — does not bother to waste time explaining to those who don't understand or are "invested in not understanding" what he says or does — which in politics could be

    What really happened is much more prosaic, but does explain "the dumbest thing I've done in recent years" statement, which refers not to his attempt to wrest the "green" / "environmental" issues from near-exclusive province of Democratic Party, but to the political aftermath of the ad photo repeatedly posted as the "proof" that he is the AGW Global Warming advocate and believer. In politics, taking chances to do something productive rather than just talking party line is seldom rewarded.

    From Pelosi Fires back at Gingrich - FR, post #9, by untwist, 2014 January 08

      ..... Newt made a mistake sitting down with Nancy, but he never bought into the Pelosi / Obama Cap and Trade model. The leftist model was based on huge penalties and bankrupting localities with taxes if they do not move on the federal govt's demands. Gingrich favored a business incentive, tax-break driven model for companies that invest in green energy.

      He was snookered by the left who wanted to use him for leverage to push their wild plans. He agreed in principle to invest in alternative energy. He never was in line with Pelosi's model for strong-handed leftist coercion. This is what has not been explained properly.

    From Pelosi Fires back at Gingrich - FR, post #27; 2014 January 08

      ..... Newt keeps trying to co-opt the "green movement" so it would become easier to promote more of real "alternative" sources of energy (like nuclear) instead of cap-and-trade and "carbon taxes." Co-opt the "green" movement and propose investing in cheaper and cleaner domestic sources of energy, contrast it with the pain of expense, scarcity and loss of mobility and freedom of Gore / Pelosi / Kerry liberal "solutions" and then the real goals of phony "green environmentalists" - money from taxes and expensive wind/solar energy - are gone ... and with the money, a movement itself will fail or join Republicans. Defunding by co-opting (instead of "cooperating" with them in their goals) was the real goal of Newt getting into the arena ..... < snip >

      ..... Meanwhile, Gingrich's staff balked at what Gore's Alliance for Climate Protection wanted the former speaker to say in the ad. They refused to clear the words "crisis" to describe climate change or for him to say — "We need new laws" — to address it ..... < snip >

      ..... "We rejected the initial script because it stated positions that we just didn't believe were true," said Tyler. "They wanted Newt to basically talk about global warming, which we would not do. At the time, 'climate change' was seen as a safe thing to say." ..... < snip >

      ..... About a month after the commercial began airing, Gingrich's now defunct political action group, American Solutions for Winning the Future, began its own advertising campaign — a pro- oil "Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less," mantra aimed at blocking legislation co-sponsored by Senators Joseph I. Lieberman, a Connecticut independent, and John Warner, a Virginia Republican, to combat climate change by curbing carbon emissions. ..... < snip >

    Other facts debunking the multitude of myths about Gingrich are in these links / references, for those who are really interested, so here are some myth-busters (some posts contain links and references within them, so please forgive repetition) :

    Refs :
    Gingrich: If it comes to a shutdown, the GOP should stick to its principles - FR, post #104, 2012 February 12

    Gingrich admits ABC claim was false [Politico] - FR, post #32 / WSJ, No-Fault Newt, by James Taranto, 2012 January 20

    "Cain/Gingrich 2012"? - FR, posts #64, #69, 2011 October 06

    'Stop Romney' Christian conservatives give nod to Santorum ahead of S.C. balloting - FR, posts #67, #19, 2012 January 15

    To Newt Gingrich haters (vanity) - FR, posts #1, #122, 2012 April 13

    Gingrich: The challenge confronting Republicans - FR, posts #1, #2, #26, #81, 2012 December 24

    Gingrich urges U.S. Republicans to move beyond Obama opposition - FR, posts #59, #60, 2013 August 15

    Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference? - FR, posts #14, #17, 2014 May 18

    Gingrich's Secret Weapon: Newt Inc. - FR, posts #1, #2, #14, 2012 January 25

    Does Ryan Now Agree with Gingrich? [And now, here's the rest of the story] - FR, posts #43, 2012 February 18

    Reagan Had the Recipe for Success. Let's Follow It (Newt Gingrich in WSJ) - FR / WSJ, posts #1, #17, #19, 2012 December 29

  • Cannabis really can trigger paranoia

    07/22/2014 2:15:58 AM PDT · 71 of 84
    CutePuppy to Ken H
    the point of bringing up the CA stats is to show how questionable is the claim that legalizing pot will cause crime to rise significantly.

    Just because two unrelated events happened at the same time or over the same period of time doesn't make them "correlated" — that's basic and shouldn't be complicated.

    For example, the sharp increase in popularity of poker has, in and of itself, no correlation to drop in national crime statistics. Same goes for sharp drop in the price of carpenter's tools or children's toys and number of other things over the same period of time.

    Your conclusions regarding correlation of "medical" marijuana and CA crime stats are just as faulty as correlation with the national stats. Check out the number of municipalities in CA that have banned the dispensaries precisely due to increased crime, nuisance and costs (policing, legal, medical etc.) — please refer again to the posts #33 and #39 in the links to FR thread in my first post. Now, maybe that action by the CA municipalities and communities is a contributing factor to overall reduction in CA crime rates, but that would be just an assumption since I don't have the actual stats per municipality.

    Personally, I would put 1) the internet and 2) the increase in right-to-carry and increase in gun ownership, as major causative factors.

    Another cum hoc ergo propter hoc opinion, without supporting facts.

    Now please stop mischaracterizing my argument.

    I did not... I argued your misuse of certain statistics and basic statistical concepts, and your offering an opinion without foundation as a fact.

    "You're entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts" - Bernard Baruch

    "Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored" - Aldous Huxley

    "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality" - Ayn Rand

  • Cannabis really can trigger paranoia

    07/21/2014 10:45:47 PM PDT · 68 of 84
    CutePuppy to Ken H
    "Correlation does not imply causation is a phrase in science and statistics that emphasizes that a correlation between two variables does not necessarily imply that one causes the other."

    1. Yes, that's essentially what the logical fallacy Cum hoc ergo propter hoc describes.

    In other words, if you can't prove causation, your entire argument falls apart, i.e., correlation without causation is coincidental, meaningless and irrelevant, as I have shown in many examples in my previous post.

    2. Your argument doesn't even show correlation, because there is nothing in the data set of crime statistics that has a variable that says "marijuana." It's as simple as that. Straight line from point a to point b has no correlation to straight line from point x to point y.

    Otherwise, I can make thousands of statements that "correlate" to the crime data which have no relationship to the crime data, except in my imagination - see few examples in my first post.

    Really, check the statistics books/blogs on this, because you are confused on what correlation means, let alone why causation is essential for your premise to be even marginally arguable.

    And, just for yourself, check again the technology change argument (though I don't claim causation) which has been much more relevant and important in crime statistics than whether the MJ laws have been relaxed (which is destroying the first argument that the "War on Drugs" has failed) or not - they are simply not present in the data (i.e., not a variable in the data, which it can be correlated with).

    Maybe this resource on validity and variables can help: Research Methods

  • Cannabis really can trigger paranoia

    07/21/2014 7:06:24 PM PDT · 64 of 84
    CutePuppy to Ken H; ConservingFreedom; exDemMom; All
    "The pure and simple truth is rarely pure and never simple" – Oscar Wilde

    "There is always an easy solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and wrong" - H. L. Mencken

    "If facts conflict with a theory, either the theory must be changed or the facts" - Baruch Spinoza

    "Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!" - 'Homer Simpson'

    "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics" - Benjamin Disraeli / Mark Twain

    "Cum/post hoc ergo propter hoc" | "With/after this therefore because of this" - logical fallacy

    "Data is not information. Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not understanding. Understanding is not wisdom. Wisdom is not the truth"

    "Eliminate the impossible; whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth" - 'Sherlock Holmes'


    Re data in provided http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm - United States Crime Rates 1960 - 2012 :

    1. If you are a hammer, everything starts looking like a nail. Only looking at any unrelated data through the prism of marijuana laws and consumption can someone make any assumptions — let alone conclusions — from the statistical data table that you provided in this link. Marijuana is not part of the data, so there is no correlation — forget about causation — between marijuana and the national crime statistics in that table.

    Someone who is hung up on and is looking at everything through the prism / filter of "income or wealth inequality" could very easily "prove" from the same data that, as income or wealth "inequality" grew wider, the crime rate per capita dropped (i.e., the correlation of "inequality" and national crime rate) - so, it's a wonderful thing, except there is really no correlation, direct or reverse, between the two.

    How about illegal immigration and crime rate? There has been unarguably more illegal immigration while the crime rate ostensibly dropped. Conclusions?

    The per capita consumption of nicotine has decreased around the same time span. Conclusion — reduction of smoking directly correlates to the reduction in crime rates?

    We know that alcohol is not a likely culprit: Gallup: U.S. Drinking Rate Edges Up Slightly to 25-Year High

    Here is a good one, though I don't claim to "divine" it from that data - how about demographics and population aging, i.e., elderly commit fewer crimes?

    How about increase in gun ownership? Increases in minimum wage (include states as well)? Or increase/decrease in incarceration rate? Or incarceration rate among certain income/race/political party/whatchamacallit groups?

    Given enough creativity and time one can come up with any number of similar "correlations" — as long as no actual data in the statistics incorporates the variable - that's just Statistics 101. Also, let's keep in mind that societal changes (that includes crime rates) are long-term events and the shifts don't usually happen in a year or less. Enough imagination, and one can "prove" both direct and reverse correlation, shifted by only a few years, since there is no data filter in the table.

    Of course, the nature (and definitions and classifications) of many crimes also changed in the last 50 or 100 years (for example, cyber-crime was nearly non-existent then) — as well as increased difficulty and lower viability of profit motive for committing many of the crimes — not due to societal changes but due to technological changes (and corresponding changes in the monetary value of some goods and services) — i.e., things or services that were very valuable 25-50 years ago are simply not worth stealing today or not worth enough effort. A very thoughtful article on this subject: What Will Crooks Do When Crime Doesn't Pay? - BLV, by Megan McArdle, 2014-07-14

    Please do not use this irrelevant data to prove anything re marijuana - it's a meaningless statistical sophistry and would only serve to deliberately confuse yourself and countless others who are not proficient in elementary statistics... unless that's exactly the point of the exercise.

    2. The premise seems to rely on holding two contradictory ideas at the same time - a) that the "War on drugs" failed (BTW, how can you quantify and qualify that, or is that just a good old standard statement, to "convince" the sceptics) and b) at the same time that the "War on drugs" has not really been waged (i.e., the entire premise of the marijuana laws having been relaxed or simply unenforced in certain areas). Have to pick one or the other, but I guess claiming them both at the same time is the only way to justify the conclusions based on the national crime data.

    3. The so-called "War on drugs" is not just a "War on marijuana" (and is happening not only in the USA, but in the most countries.) So, regarding the desire to stop the "War on drugs" — does that extend to all illicit drugs like meth, cocaine and opioids, ecstasy/MDMA, synthetics or just to marijuana? If marijuana is decriminalized, would you say "Mission accomplished" or all other drugs should be legalized as well?

    Or is the answer the good old standby — meaningless and easily refuted comparisons of THC to caffeine**, nicotine*** or "drug" alcohol — "If they are legal, then everything should be legal"?

    Before answering, please see these references - there is no point making these posts even longer, repeating same ole':

    Golden Gate Park pot party a major mess [San Francisco] - FR, post #33, 2013 April 21

    Golden Gate Park pot party a major mess [San Francisco] - FR, post #39, 2013 April 21

    ____________________

    ** Caffeine, in pure form, is deadly in relatively small doses. There has been an increasing number of deaths recently of people overdosing on pure caffeine.

    *** Nicotine is a drug that has been proven to make people smarter (Smarter: The New Science of Building Brain Power - B, by Dan Hurley, 275 pages, 2013 February 01) and has beneficial cardiovascular properties (used by some athletes) - though smoking or chewing tobacco leaves is an addictive, stupid and very harmful method of nicotine delivery, instead of applying patches.

  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    07/07/2014 9:54:49 PM PDT · 38 of 43
    CutePuppy to informavoracious
    We sprinkled sugar on our corn flakes, ate white bread, mashed potatoes, white rice, fatty pork chops covered in greasy gravy, fried chicken, butter-drenched vegetables, cake with sugary icing and full-fat ice cream and no one was fat.

    :~)

    That so reminded me of the scene from the movie Cocoon (1985): "When we get where we're going, we'll never be sick, we won't get any older, and we won't ever die."
  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    07/07/2014 5:55:17 PM PDT · 7 of 43
    CutePuppy to linear

    Crohns, RA, IBD, IBS and a number of other inflammatory and/or autoimmune diseases.

  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    07/07/2014 5:48:09 PM PDT · 4 of 43
    CutePuppy to faithhopecharity
    doctor heal thyself and all that, ha!

    Unfortunately, in today's rigid legal and regulatory environment, doctors may not be [legally] allowed to recommend the best treatment for the patients that they would choose for themselves.

  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    07/07/2014 5:43:55 PM PDT · 3 of 43
    CutePuppy to 2ndDivisionVet; neverdem; exDemMom; American in Israel; sun7
    In case you may be interested (inflammation, diabetes, cancer research). Older article, didn't find it posted.

    This seems to be entirely different research than in the recent Obesity-related disease trigger found, says UCSD team - FR / UCSD, 2014 June 13

  • Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows

    07/07/2014 5:38:08 PM PDT · 1 of 43
    CutePuppy
    Summary: The results were published in the FASEB Journal. PAR2 may be a biomarker for metabolic dysfunction, and PAR2 antagonism can be an effective intervention for treating metabolic dysfunction and obesity.
  • The Insiders: This month’s jobs headlines don’t tell the true story

    07/05/2014 4:04:37 AM PDT · 10 of 10
    CutePuppy to xzins
    When your statistical method allows your worst possible outcome to be your best possible score, then know that someone is cooking the books.

    "There are lies, damned lies, and then, there are statistics."

    The problem is that the few headline quantitative numbers that government and media media usually highlight (such as "unemployment" / U3) tell people very little about the true state of the actual economy and employment picture, both quantitative (underemployment, labor participation rate, employment demographics etc.) and qualitative (total hours worked, average earnings per hour worked etc.)

    For example, replacing full-time jobs that pay $50 per hour with part-time jobs that pay $15 per hour is qualitatively substantially different but would not change the headline numbers one bit, yet at the same time would significantly alter the economic picture.

    Once certain numbers are established as "official" indicatiors of economy, employment or inflation, they are used as guides for policies that make them relatively easy to manipulate and to paint a rosier picture, i.e., they become nothing more than politically biased statistical tools.

    ObamaCare Spurs Shift Away From 30-34-Hour Workweek - IBD, by Jed Graham, 2013 August 05

    Low-Wage Workweek Sliding Ahead Of ObamaCare Fines - IBD, by Jed Graham, 2014 July 03

    Obama's Economy: Where Did All The Young Workers Go? - IBD, by Stephen Moore, 2014 June 17

  • Senator Jeff Sessions: On Immigration, It’s Time to Defend Americans

    07/04/2014 5:54:42 PM PDT · 39 of 54
    CutePuppy to Cheerio; Dilbert San Diego; All
    AND it is also a felony (or at least it used to be) to assist anyone in this country illegally to get a job...

    I think that is very likely the real (though publicly unspoken) reason for many in the productive / investing-in-America class pressing Republican leadership for amnesty - they don't like to be selectively raided by ICE/INS any more than they like to be selectively audited by IRS or selectively subjected to the nuisance or harassment lawsuits.

    Doesn't mean they should be accommodated by the amnesty, but that is the real impetus behind the push than having "cheap workforce" because after "undocumented worker" becomes legal and "documented" he stops being really "cheap."

  • Senator Jeff Sessions: On Immigration, It’s Time to Defend Americans

    07/04/2014 5:26:36 PM PDT · 37 of 54
    CutePuppy to Jim Robinson; lilyramone; Joe Boucher; Oldexpat; VRW Conspirator; Puppage; Dilbert San Diego; ...
    Obama keeps saying that the USA is "a nation of immigrants" which is 100% correct and 99% irrelevant, because by phrasing it like this what he is trying to mask is that the USA is "not a nation of open borders."

    In fact, no nation can survive and be a nation / country for long, without enforcing borders. What is "broken" now is not an immigration "system" but rather the enforcement of border security and control and strong enforcement of the existing immigration laws and policies.

    The calls for "comprehensive immigration reform" — which will do nothing to remedy the situation, except more broken promises and more money for the inaction of the broken and corrupt government agencies and departments which are supposed to administer these laws — are nothing but a smoke screen for the deliberate lack of enforcement of existing laws, designed to create a "crisis" so that any "comprehensive reform" looks like a solution, when in reality actually contributing to the real crises that will inevitably follow.

    "Comprehensive Immigration Reform," if any, should only ever reinforce that "no citizenship or voting rights for anyone who ever entered the country illegally; no federal, state, county or 'sanctuary' municipality financial or educational assistance, and no birthright citizenship for children of persons who are in the country illegally.".

    Now, that should be "comprensible" enough?

  • Rand Paul’s Not Endorsing Lamar Alexander, But The Two Are Making A Point To Be Seen Together

    07/01/2014 7:46:12 PM PDT · 22 of 27
    CutePuppy to Shery; don-o; Gaffer; reefdiver; cotton1706; tumblindice; skinkinthegrass; skeeter; NormsRevenge
    Here is the real Rand Paul: this acorn didn't fall far from the tree (Ron Paul) who was the unofficial ring-leader of Occupy Wall Street wing of Republican Party.

    From Rand Paul Slams 'Fat Cats' With Hedge Fund in Top Donors - BL, by Dawn Kopecki, 2014 July 01

      "We cannot be the party of fat cats, rich people, and Wall Street," the Kentucky Republican told the audience at the Freedom Summit in New Hampshire in April. ..... < snip >

      ..... At the same time, the founders and employees of Mason Capital Management, a $13.6 billion New York hedge fund, have become leading contributors to Paul's political aims. The hedge fund has offices in London and San Francisco and offers clients offshore investments through a limited partnership in the Cayman Islands, among other strategies. ..... < snip >

    Different first name, same "99%" scam. Both Pauls are phony libertarians, phony populists, phony conservatives.

  • Israel's Netanyahu calls for supporting Kurdish independence

    07/01/2014 12:31:54 AM PDT · 17 of 17
    CutePuppy to BillyBoy; 353FMG; JamesCooper; All
      The vast majority of Kurds are Muslims. While I think they'd probably be grateful for an independent state and leave Israel alone, I don't think you could "guarantee" they'd be an ally to Israel...

    To [loosely] quote Lord Palmerston: "[Nations / Countries / Governments] have no eternal friends or allies, they have no perpetual enemies, they only have permanent interests."

    (The last bit is quite arguable, of course, due to generalization and [sometimes rapid] changes of nations' governments, demographics and cultures.)

    The vast majority of Egyptians and Jordanians are Muslim. That doesn't preclude them from being reasonably reliable peaceful neighbours and trading partners, after finding themselves on the losing end of a few wars.

    So, while there is never a "guarantee," it's very likely that Kurds, sharing with Jews a somewhat similar historical experience regarding their homelands — the diaspora and the alyiah — would feel some sort of kinship and be a more reliable ally and partner to Israel. They know that they have much less to fear from Israel than from their Muslim Sunni and Shi'a "brethren" neighbours.

    This editorial piece presents some interesting facts and an opinion: Kurdistan: Great, greater the greatest? - Pravda.ru, by Lyuba Lulko, 2014 June 06

  • Kanye West Disses Barack Obama: ‘You Can’t Effect Change’

    06/20/2014 9:50:13 PM PDT · 33 of 33
    CutePuppy to DJ Frisat; nickcarraway; Peter W. Kessler; AppyPappy; jsanders2001; irishjuggler; F15Eagle; ...
    However the changes affect Us in a mostly negative fashion.

    He can effect CHANGE willy-nilly and HOPE that it "works" the way it is intended. It never works that way but it can inflict lasting — if not permanent — damage and can negatively affect the society and hundreds of millions of people.

    And he was quite open from the beginning that this was the desired effect of his HOPE and CHANGE campaign and policies - "We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America."

    Kanye ("You can't effect change from inside the White House like that ... you gotta have the money.") is wrong on several levels here because he doesn't seem to understand (or willing to accept) that any determined President — especially when having a majority or split Congress — has almost unlimited amount of taxpayers' money at his disposal, and — particularly when having major / pop media and educational institutions in his pocket — immense power to effect a number of social and structural changes with long lasting societal effects.

  • Obama / Romney discuss Iraq SOFA (status of forces agreement)

    06/12/2014 10:31:21 PM PDT · 7 of 10
    CutePuppy to ansel12
    Thanks for this historical blast from the past. Puts things into even better perspective, especially with headlines like this:

    Romney tries to re-emerge as force in GOP politics - FR, via AP, 2014 June 12

    Apparently he doesn't think he's done enough damage...

  • ISIL fighters seize Turkish consulate in Iraq's Mosul

    06/11/2014 11:50:58 AM PDT · 48 of 49
    CutePuppy to livius
    And yes, this can all be laid directly at the feet of Obama.

    You are right, of course. Unfortunately, this will be blamed on Bush ("Bush lied us into Iraq War and torture!") and unfortunatelly many on the right, including an incredibly large number of FR members, will agree with that, because they can't separate the purpose and the goals of the mission from its execution (and by execution I mean both military — which was amazingly good under the circumstances — and sustained political and PR effort — which was amazingly poor, misguided and mishandled).

    Liberals / Progressives had a handbook on eventually undermining any US military intervention, no matter how necessary or even initially overwhelmingly supported by them ("I was for it before I was against it") since Vietnam. The conservatives, and especially their leadership, should have been prepared and ready for that eventual Second Front / Fifth Column, yet they fail because not enough attention is given to or enough talent deployed for the sustained PR, which eventually leads to waning and failing mission.

    Of course, no mention will be made of Afghanistan, Libya and other places where Obama made a huge mess all on his own...

  • The Test Of The Champion: California Chrome Makes A Run At History [LIVE]

    06/08/2014 12:11:57 AM PDT · 137 of 158
    CutePuppy to discostu; Pajamajan
      Nobody is gaming a system. The Belmont Stakes has entry rules which do NOT require participation in a previous Crown race, and have NEVER required it. All the horses today qualified for the race within the rules.

    "Rules," "requirements" - that's completely missing the point. "Gaming the system" is exactly the game of using the circumstances for the purpose of gaining advantage within the confinement of rules and requirements. In this case, it's the very short period of time for the horse to recover after two grueling races, to compete in a race that already tests the stamina of the horse.

    In other words, taking advantage of what in human terms is often called a "schedule conflict."

      The prescription is do a better job training horses. They need to be able to win at the Belmont, it's the hardest of the races.

    Who said they couldn't or wouldn't, given enough time to recover from Preakness? Not to mention that your prescription of spending [more] time training the horse at Belmont would cost significant amount of money for owners (especially the ones farther from North East) and would make it even more difficult to develop a TC winner for someone of more modest means - which is the case with Dumbass Partners - and would make it even easier for more "local" or very wealthy / corporate owners. Is that really a desirable outcome?

    All I heard during pre-race commentary was not the relative strengths and weaknesses of the horses but only that Wicked Strong was the favorite because it didn't compete in the Preakness and was "fresher," and that 4 out of last 5 races was won by a horse that didn't compete in either Derby or Preakness.

    Where is the fairness in that? I keep seeing the comments that all things and conditions in the race were "equal" when they clearly weren't equal - some owners chose for their horses to be unencumbered by prior races because they clearly understood the great advantages (and lower expenses) of fresh legs. In other words, horses who currently compete in Preakness are naturally disadvantaged compared with those that don't.

    Moving Belmont a few weeks out would, if not level the playing field, significantly minimize the disadvantage and [probably] put a stop to much of this kind of nonsense.

    I think that's what Steve Coburn's point was about, though I disagree with his prescription to remedy the situation, as it is artificial and might put the undue burden on other owners and horses. But what is so "controversial" and what would be the disadvantage of extending the time between races a few weeks?

      Your adjustment example is the exact opposite. Basketball realized the talent pool had changed so they made the game HARDER. Putting more time between the races would make it easier.

    I think you missed the point again, even though you recognized that the adjustment had to be made by the NBA in response to changing conditions and circumstances of the game.

    The NBA moved the basket higher because 7-footers had the "unfair" advantage over 6-footers with the low-hanging "fruit"... er, basket. The point was not to make the GAME harder but to make it harder FOR the 7-footers to realize their relative height advantages over 6+ foot "shorties" (i.e., "you can't teach height") - the correlation in horse racing would be to reduce / minimize the relative advantage of "fresh vs tired" - something that horses have no control over. So then, "Putting more time between the races would make it..." more of a level-playing field, minimizing the affects of now "naturally"-occuring disadvantage of "conflict schedule."

    What's more, the basket height change was somewhat disruptive for all the players - everybody, including the "shorties," had to adjust to new height. Moving Belmont to the end of June wouldn't be at all disruptive, it wouldn't otherwise change an iota or rules and requirements by Belmont, not one yard less for horses to run and not a thing for any horse or any owner, unless there is some big "schedule conflict" I am not aware of, or unless climate change makes end of June less palatable for racing than the beginning of June.

    -------

      California Chrome did fine today. It's still a great story. He's already done the impossible in even winning the first 2 races of the TC. He finished best of the horses that did run in all three races...

    Exactly. He also photo-finished with the near-consensus favorite of the experts, which had the advantage of skipping Preakness. It was so clear that CC was just too tired to pull off a win, that conclusion as to why was obvious, but that doesn't make him any lesser horse.

      The owner may have gone off emotionally over the heartbreaking loss, but he brought up a good question:

    Yeah, I understand why some people throw the usual "sore loser" jabs at Coburn, but the man made a great point in addressing the basic unfairness issue out in the open, even if it flew right through their ears. Particularly for neophytes like me who could not possibly know that the conditions were not really "equal" until pre-race commentators started talking about "fresh legs" and "skipping Preakness" and gave stats about the last 5 races winners.

    My immediate comment was: "So, the owners are 'cheating' to be spoilers because they don't think their horses have what it takes to be real winners" - maybe harsh, but really just stating the fact.

      Something needs to change -Others have also suggested a longer time period ( or the same amount of time) between the three races?

    "Same" amount of time isn't necessary and it doesn't change anything if it's not long enough for horses to recover. Length of the time to recover between races matters, having them exactly the "same" doesn't.

      It isn't good for horse racing in the long run either. A whole lot of people watching/betting on a horse race for the first time today- went home disappointed, and probably won't come back. Something needs to change.

    Absolutely right. I love horses but I am not a [horse / dog] racing aficionado. The reason I was watching this Belmont was due to great company of people and dogs accompanied by good food and near-festive atmosphere. None were participating, interested in or talked about betting, though many are very bright people with an exceptionally good understanding of probability and game theories.

    If I know that during next Belmont the "talk of the town" is going to be "fresh horse vs tired horse" - that kind of event may not happen or we could find some other reason to gather.

    The reason these races are even remotely special for many not generally interest in "sport" is because of Triple Crown, not a single event, i.e., they are linked by organizers to generate hype and interest among "commoners" - if people realize that the TC game as it exists now is rigged against a potential TC winner, there goes the hype and a lot of money along with it. Steve Coburn has done a great service for the horses and business, even if some (including "snarky" Bob Costas) can't see past last hour to appreciate that.

  • The Test Of The Champion: California Chrome Makes A Run At History [LIVE]

    06/07/2014 6:26:28 PM PDT · 125 of 158
    CutePuppy to Hot Tabasco; goonie4life9; jjotto; discostu; All
    California Chrome is a great story and the amazing horse, not a hyped up weakling that hardly had competition.

    Isn't it interesting that all the professional "experts" picked Wicked Strong to win, precisely because it was fresh, yet both finished in a nose-to-nose tie, losing to even fresher horses.

    CC's owner had it exactly right about stacking the odds by skipping other races (i.e. his diagnosis of the problem's cause and effect was right) but gave probably the wrong prescription to fix it.

    Maybe the right cause of action is to advance Belmont another two to three weeks out, so that the horses participating in Preakness could get enough rest and thus nullify, or at least minimize the advantage of having a "fresh" horse. This will change the incentives of owners trying to game the system and put all their hopes on one race where they can "specialize" the horse for distance or the track and have an additional advantage of having fresh legs.

    I understand that there are business considerations on part of the track, but they are minor, at best, and for the sake of the "sport" overall it is certainly worthwhile and is not likely to cause undue hardship.

    There is a lot more money and more science and more human talent involved in racing today than it was 40 years ago, so adjustments should be made to accommodate the changes. When Wilt Chamberlain and Lew Alcindor show up on the basketball court, the basket gets moved up, because "you can develop talent, but you can't teach 7 feet."

  • Bowe Bergdahl's release bumps VA scandal from political spotlight (Whoo-hoo!)

    06/02/2014 3:41:13 AM PDT · 30 of 31
    CutePuppy to GrandJediMasterYoda; miss marmelstein; Sacajaweau; Sarah Barracuda; All
    Unfortunately, it's not incompetence. This is, at least temporarily, a hat-trick by Obama:

    1. He successfully changes the conversation and diverts attention of the people (even if temporarily) from VA-Obamacare-IRS-Benghazi-EPA and weak economy to an easily spinnable feel-good story of "saving private/Sgt Bergdahl" and reuniting him with his long-suffering family, who also get their 15 minutes of fame spouting the usual left-wing anti-war/anti-military pablum.

    2. He gives the media a break in their, by necessity, gloomy narrative of Obama's and Democrats' current "misfortunes" and allows them an opportunity to change focus and bash "heartless" Republican politicians and "critics" of Obama's brilliant foreign policy "successes" of ending the "longest American wars," setting up another "emotional" micro-isssue going into 2014 elections — some people won't go beyond the media headlines and happy TV news broadcasts of "reunion" and "no men left behind" spin.

    3. He gets to use this "feel-good exchange" to remove most dangerous Taliban / al-Qaeda personnel from Gitmo, thereby setting in motion the completion of his long-standing promise and the goal of potential closing of Gitmo — now that few if any "serious" terrorists are out and thereby reducing Gitmo's "usefulness" for detention of those who can be "safely relocated" to mainland for "civilian court" trials.

  • Exclusive: “Hunger Games” Killer’s Dad Sells Art Photos of Women’s Behinds

    05/26/2014 5:07:23 AM PDT · 121 of 142
    CutePuppy to bboop; CaptainK

    Yes, Xanax is definitely a psychotropic drug.

    The term “psychotropic drug” is used to describe psychiatric medicines which alter chemical levels in the brain that impact mood and behaviour.

    5 major common categories are: antipsychotics, antidepressants, ADHD drugs, anxiolytics (anti-anxiety) and mood stabilizers.

    Xanax is one of the strongest available anxiolytic drugs and has a strong physical dependency (addiction-prone) profile, especially in the young.

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/19/2014 4:17:04 PM PDT · 20 of 20
    CutePuppy to LearsFool
    ... maybe try a flanking maneuver instead of the usual frontal assault. :-)

    Attempting to win them over with the "frontal assault / brute force" of explaining the facts is not going to work (at least in the beginning) if they think you are an enemy / unbeliever / not down for the cause and because they already "know" ("what ain't so") so it's no wonder that it has not gotten us anywhere all this time.

    Perhaps I need to modify my approach to AGW proselytes...

    :~) Welcome to the club!

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 8:15:30 PM PDT · 17 of 20
    CutePuppy to LearsFool
    1. I wouldn't even try to attempt anything like this with a true religion - the "religion of Gaia / environmentalism" is quite different.

    2. I wouldn't lie about having the differences - just not argue them, in order to show that together we can accomplish the "common good" - solving the problem their "religion" supposedly tries to solve with the practical methods and tools that are far superior for both people and the environment than the "solutions" their "teachers" told them to be necessary as the only ones capable of doing the job / "saving" the planet.

    Eventually, the hope would be that they would wise up as a result (they don't even have to give up their love for the environment, if that is what it really was in the first place, rather than fear of "environmental disaster") but, if not — fine, the rest of us (and they, too) would not have to bear the burdens and the expense of the progressive "environmental solutions" (i.e., transfer of capital from productive sources to their own pockets) which is the only reason the progressives are in this game, for as long as they can take it.

    Deny the progressive "thought leaders" the means to financially benefit from the "AGW / man-made climate change" hoax and you'll see how fast it will disappear from the news in favour of some other necessity or disaster du jour - investing in "infrastructure" (like light rail) is usually convincing enough for enough people to vote for it.

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 6:31:11 PM PDT · 14 of 20
    CutePuppy to LearsFool
    The best way to set up a person for cognitive dissonance is to have him DO something - big or small, doesn't matter - in the name of his new belief. Compared with merely holding the belief (often loosely-held), such an action both reinforces the belief and magnifies the potential cognitive dissonance exponentially. .....

    (Think of as religious syncretism with a twist. :-)

    That is a very good analogy. It IS the method various shades of The Left (pink, red, green etc.) inculcate their faithful, particularly young and those with unformed / uninformed opinions.

    It's exactly why I often explain how we have to use similar tactic to [begin to] introduce the right information to these unfortunate souls to revert them from brainwashed state:

    From Gingrich: The challenge confronting Republicans - FR, post #26, 2012 December 24

      < snip > ..... To many young people (and many not so young), the "man-made global warming / climate change" is by now a matter of faith, even, as they might believe, scientifically-based "faith" - you will not get through to them about science or fraud or possible positive aspects of AGW (read recent article WSJ: Matt Ridley: Cooling Down the Fears of Climate Change, 2012 December 18).

      You will not even get to the first base with them, if you are considered a "climate change denier" - they simply will not listen to you or your arguments - you will be challenging their faith.

      If you don't challenge their faith, it's very easy to provide the argument that the right "green solutions" (like "clean, cheap, green" nuclear energy, natural gas, filtrated oil and anthracite, and even localized - not expensive farm-based - solar energy) will make their energy more plentiful, cheaper and will not require taxes, fees, more regulation and (most importantly for them) "sacrifices" that Democratic doomsday versions of "global warming"/"climate change" are requiring them to accept.

      You don't need to change their faith in "climate change" to convert them from liberal drones demanding drastic actions (meaning more taxes, fees, subsidies for "green" technologies like expensive and inefficient wind turbines and solar farms, which are nothing more than crony socialism) into allies who will be on your side of the "green revolution" and leave Democrats in the dust on the issue, because their only interest in the hoax is government-doled money. ..... < snip >

    We need to learn how to fight fire by fire, but to it successfully and intelligently, we first need to understand which "fire" or particular "fusion of beliefs" drives them.

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 4:42:13 PM PDT · 10 of 20
    CutePuppy to alloysteel
    People are much more comfortable in their lies and misconceptions, than they ever could be with the real world, seen for what it is.

    The Universe is a large and frightening place, and is totally unconcerned with your dreams, hopes and aspirations. The only crime for which there is no escaping the consequences is stupidity. The sentencing may not be swift, but it is sure and merciless, neither cruel not just.

    Beautifully stated!

    Re the Universe, stupidity and consequences:

    "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former" - Albert Einstein

    "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality" - Ayn Rand

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 4:19:24 PM PDT · 9 of 20
    CutePuppy to Sherman Logan
    My understanding is that these measurements were being used long before Obama took office.

    I may be wrong, but if this is right it is dishonest to blame it on Obama.

    You are correct, to a large extent, which is why I didn't emphasize that part.

    What I think author is reflecting, however, is the Obama administration and the media's efforts in emphasizing the "headline" overall core inflation and U3 unemployment numbers while de-emphasizing and/or ignoring certain other indicators such as "consumer inflation" numbers and the tremendous drop in labor participation rates which make "headline" numbers look better than they otherwise would look.

    CPI-U was introduced in 1978, but BLS is publishing CPI-W and number of other indexes.

    Consumer Price Index Summary - CPI from BLS

    FWIW, the MIT's independently calculated Billion Prices Project follows US CPI reasonably closely and it has food and gas components.

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 3:54:36 PM PDT · 6 of 20
    CutePuppy to null and void
    Thanks for sharing this (I was not familiar with the song or Joe Jackson):

    Too hard for clever folks to understand
    They're more used to words like: Ideology . . .
    They're not talkin' 'bout right and left
    They're talkin' 'bout
    Right and wrong - do you know the difference
    Right and wrong - do you know the difference

  • Trick or truth! Can you even tell the difference?

    05/18/2014 3:08:35 PM PDT · 1 of 20
    CutePuppy
    [Emphasis and italics mine] Another good article by Frank Miele, covering a range of falsehoods, fake facts, and distorted knowledge and history.

    ** "It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble; it's what you know that just ain't so" - Mark Twain

    *** "Reality is that which, when you stop believing it, doesn't go away" - Philip K. Dick

  • San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro Is Said to Be HUD Pick in Cabinet Reshuffling

    05/18/2014 4:31:57 AM PDT · 15 of 28
    CutePuppy to DAC21; Cincinatus' Wife; ScottinVA

    Hispanic. San Antonio. Mayor. HUD. Henry Cisneros redux?

  • 'Jeopardy!' Battle of the Decades Tournament winner Brad Rutter wins $1 million grand prize

    05/17/2014 4:25:32 PM PDT · 22 of 25
    CutePuppy to ConservativeTeen
    The one downside to these tournament is the inevitable letdown of watching regular play afterwards.

    Absolutely, which is why I watch only sporadically, unless I am alerted to potential "star" - they are relatively easy to spot.

    Often it's just painful to watch them missing the obvious questions. Worse yet, many otherwise decent players have no concept of proper betting techniques, particularly in the final Jeopardy! round when it's really an elementary math. Even accounting for "the category" and "fear and greed," some of the bets make absolutely no sense whatsoever, and just make you question how a good player who, no doubt, watched many games, wouldn't spend a few minutes to master the "math of final bet" in the prep.

  • 'Jeopardy!' Battle of the Decades Tournament winner Brad Rutter wins $1 million grand prize

    05/17/2014 9:33:19 AM PDT · 18 of 25
    CutePuppy to ConservativeTeen; Lmo56
    With regards, I do think he is the third best player. He won a stacked Tournament of Champions over solid players like Joon Pahk, Tom Nissley, and Mark Runsvold. He also holds the record for money won in a single game.

    Agree. He also advanced the methodology of preparation for unique aspects of the game, describing a scientific, pattern recognition based approach, not simple ad hoc absorption.

    Going back to Roger, I think he made the correct call on the first day Daily Double. It was a second row DD, which usually means it is going to be an easier clue. Doubling up his 10,200 would have given him a large lead heading into FJ. With such a large lead he would have not had to make a big bet on the second day Double Jeopardy Daily Double.

    Not only that, but even if Roger only nailed the second DD ("Winnipeg" instead of "Manitoba") he would be on a path to winning the tournament with thousands of points to spare. All in all, he lost more than 20,000 instead of winning 20,000 on DDs - that's a turnover / flip of more than 40,000 points.

    Nothing wrong with the strategy — as Ken said, somewhat wistfully, "That's what he does" — Arthur Chu has recently done the same, and both Ken and Brad were successful at employing it as well, especially when done early enough in the game, though not as methodically.

    It was a game between equals. Amazing tournament!