Saturday, October 3, 2009


Main Entry: ru·bric
Pronunciation: \ˈrü-brik, -ˌbrik\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English rubrike red ocher, heading in red letters of part of a book, from Anglo-French, from Latin rubrica, from rubr-, ruber red
Date: 14th century

1 a : an authoritative rule; especially : a rule for conduct of a liturgical service b (1) : name, title; specifically : the title of a statute (2) : something under which a thing is classed : category c : an explanatory or introductory commentary : gloss; specifically : an editorial interpolation
2 : a heading of a part of a book or manuscript done or underlined in a color (as red) different from the rest
3 : an established rule, tradition, or custom

— rubric or ru·bri·cal \-bri-kəl\ adjective

— ru·bri·cal·ly \-bri-k(ə-)lē\ adverb


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Dominican Missal, c. 1240, with rubrics in red (Historical Museum of Lausanne)
Rubrics in an illuminated gradual of ca. 1500

A rubric is a word or section of text which is written or printed in red ink to highlight it. The term derives from the Latin: rubrica, meaning red ochre or red chalk,[1] and originates in Medieval illuminated manuscripts from the 13th century or earlier. In these, red letters were used to highlight initial capitals (particularly of psalms), section headings and names of religious significance, a practice known as rubrication, which was a separate stage in the production of a manuscript.

Rubric can also mean the red ink or paint used to make rubrics, or the pigment used to make it.[2] Although red was most often used, other colours came into use from the late Middle Ages onwards, and the word rubric was used for these also.



[edit] Instructions

Instructions for a priest explaining what he had to do during a liturgical service were also rubricated in missals and the other forms of service book, leaving the sections to be spoken aloud in black.[3] From this, rubric has a second meaning of an instruction in a text, regardless of how it is written or printed. This is in fact the oldest recorded meaning in English, found in 1375.[4] Less formally, rubrics may refer to any liturgical action customarily performed over the course of a service, whether or not they are actually written down.

The history, status and authority of the content of rubrics is a matter of significance, and sometimes controversy, among scholars of liturgy. In the past, some theologians attempted to distinguish between those rubrics they considered to be of divine origin, and those merely of human origin. Rubrics were probably originally verbal, and then written down in separate volumes. The earliest service books to survive do not contain them, but from references in writings of the first millennium it appears that written versions existed.[5] Full rubrics covering matters such as the vestments to be worn, the appearance of the altar, when to hold particular services and similar matters may still be published separately. In modern service books like the Roman Missal, lengthy general rubrics (probably printed in the normal black) cover such issues, and preface the actual orders of service, which contain shorter basic rubrics for the conduct of the service, still usually in printed in red. Red is also often used to distinguish between words to be spoken by the celebrant and the congregation, or by other specific people involved in a service (people being married for example).

[edit] After printing

Page from the 1896 Kelmscott Press edition of the 13th century Laudes Beatae Mariae Virginis, with numbers and first lines of Psalms in red, in between prayers in black.[6]

With the arrival of printing, other typographic effects such as italic type, or using a bold, or different size type, became used for emphasizing a section of text, and as printing in two colours is more expensive and time consuming, red rubrics have since tended to be reserved specifically for religious service books, luxury editions, or books where design is emphasized.

William Morris's medieval-inspired typography for the Kelmscott Press at the end of the 19th century included chapter titles and other accents in red (or rarely blue) ink, and was influential on small press art typography associated with the Arts and Crafts movement in both England and the United States, particularly the work of the Ashendene, Doves, and Roycroft presses.[6][7]

Around 1900, red rubrics were incorporated into a Red letter edition of the King James translation of the Bible to distinguish the words spoken by Jesus during his mortal ministry, that translation lacking quotation marks. Other versions of the bible have since adopted the popular practice.

In recent years, a more specific meaning of a "scoring tool" for tests has developed in the field of education from the older senses of the word.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009




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Minutemen killers, drugs and the CIA

Ernesto Cienfuegos
La Voz de Aztlan

Los Angeles, Alta California - September 29. 2009 - (ACN) A few days after the Minutemen invaded the home of the Flores family and murdered 9-year-old Brisenia and her father Raul in Arivaca, Arizona on May 30, Shawna Forde, the leader of the Minutemen American Defense organization, contacted her mother. She told her mother, Rena Caudle of California, that she was robbing Mexicans suspected of drug smuggling to fund the Minutemen and to form her own "international private security company." Shawna Forde also told her mother that she and other Minutemen were getting ready to go to Syria on a mission.

In addition, the triggerman in the massacre of the Flores family, Jason Eugene "Gunny" Bush, confessed to Lt. Michael O'Connor of the Pima County Sheriff's Department, when he was arrested on June 11, that Shawna Forde and OTHER Minutemen planned to rob Mexican families along the US/Mexico border to obtain money for Minutemen border operations and to create a Minutemen international private security company. Bush also confessed that Shawna Forde planned and led Albert Gaxiola and "OTHER" Minutemen in the home invasion of the Flores home but that he had shot Brisenia and Raul in the head himself. Lt. Michael O'Connor was quoted in a news report that "Gunny" confessed because murdering an innocent child weighed heavily on his soul.

There is no question now that there were more than three Minutemen vigilantes involved in the raid of the Flores family. The mother, Gina Flores, who was seriously injured but survived the vicious attack has said that she remembers at least five killers entering her home. She also remembers seeing Shawna Forde constantly communicating with others outside her home with a "walkie-talkie." Lt. Michael O'Connor has reported to the news media that there is a good possibility for further arrests.

There is a major question that arises from the above facts. How did the plebeian Shawna Forde get the grand idea of forming an "international private security company" and going to Syria on a mission? Did these ideas germinate at the Minutemen border campsite north of Sasabe, Arizona known as Caballo Loco? In March of 2008, Shawna Forde camped out there with the notorious CIA covert operative Joseph Adams of "Nicaraguan Contra/Crack Cocaine Scandal" fame. Joseph Adams also presently operates a domestic as well as an "international private security company" and has travelled extensively throughout the world on covert missions. Also present at the camp wasWes Fleming, an employee of the infamous anti-Mexican bigot Glenn Spencer, according to journalist Art Ricker of the Galena Gazette in a report he published on April of 2008.

The exact nature of Joseph Adams' interest in Shawna Forde, the Minutemen and the US/Mexico border is still unknown but the multimillionaire has lent his luxurious mansion, resources and estate near St. Louis, Missouri to the Minutemen for various functions. Mike Vanderboegh of the Alabama Minuteman Support Team writes that a "reception was held at the substantial home of Joe Adams" that included "Revolutionary War Minutemen reenactors" which "presented arms as we entered the Adams' manse." Vanderboegh writes, "At the end of the ceremony, reenactors advanced to present Joe with the Revolutionary Stars and Stripes: "From the original generation of Minute Men to the Minutemen of today, we present this flag. Bear it with honor." Vanderboegh adds, "Goosebumps. I wasn't the only one with wet eyes, nor the only one with a lump in my throat."

Joseph Adams also has very high connections to the Republican Party. He is very proud of his photographs with former president George Bush and with former US Attorney General Ashcroft. There is also a photograph of him with former Prime Minister of Israel Ehud Barak. In the past, Joseph Adams has obtained extensive U.S. government legal immunity for drug related crimes that would have meant a life sentence for an ordinary citizen.

Joseph Adams' career started when he served in Vietnam as a US Marine working in military intelligence from 1970 to 1972. He was recruited by the CIA in 1984 and was assigned to an "international private security company" whose mission was to guard the exiled Contra leader of Nicaragua Adolfo Calero in the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa. In 1984 Nicaragua was in the middle of a revolution between the Sandinistas and the US-backed Contra rebels. Republican President Ronald Reagan strongly advocated for the overthrow of the Sandinista government but the Democratic Congress felt differently and blocked all funding to the Contras. This is when Oliver North and the CIA funneled money to the Contras obtained by importing cocaine to the USA, turning it into crack and selling it in Black communities in major US cities through the Bloods and the Crypts gangs. Joseph Adams was paid with this money.

When the Ronald Reagan conspiracy was exposed, Joseph Adams operations had to quickly shut down. Ultimately, Joseph Adams and six others were indicted. The government charged Joseph Adams with two counts of weapons smuggling, one count of violating neutrality and one conspiracy count. He pled guilty on a plea-bargain agreement to one count of violating neutrality. He was sentenced, incredibly, to only one day unsupervised probation and a $50 fine.

A report by journalist Randall Roberts published on March 29, 2006 says that Joseph Adams has served as a bodyguard for a Miami drug ring and that in 1983 he admitted to cocaine trafficking in Miami. Randall Roberts says that Joseph Adams faced with prison time, turned state's witness and became a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) informant. The report also says that in 2000 Joseph Adams pleaded guilty of conspiracy to bribe a Maplewood, Missouri police officer.

So the question is, "What is the exact nature of Joseph Adams' relationship with the Minutemen generally and with Shawna Forde specifically?" Is he still operating as a covert CIA agent? What is his mission? What was he doing with Shawna Forde along the Arizona/Mexico border not far from Arivaca, Arizona around March of 2008?

Arizona has now had numerous hijackings of suspected drugs smugglers along its major highways involving well armed vigilantes. There have also been numerous home invasions of the type that took place in Arivaca, Arizona by the Minutemen American Defense vigilantes. These raids have been carried out with paramilitary precision utilizing assaults rifles and military style gear. Are these simply CIA covert operations which are utilizing the Minutemen in order to raise funds for unauthorized projects in the same manner as they were raising funds to fund the Contras in Nicaragua? A 9-year-old innocent Mexican-American child has
been murdered. We need to know.

Please Note: This report along with related photographs are published at:


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Related La Voz de Aztlan articles:

Minutemen murderers will kill again

FBI urged to investigate the Minutemen in the murder of Border Patrol agent

Chilling 911 call by Gina Flores during the home invasion

Fourth Minuteman vigilante sought in the murder of Mexican family

Minutemen arrested for the murder of a Mexican family

PLAN MEXICO: Cocaine and the CIA

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
La Voz de Aztlan
Website http:/
Join Project Amigos



Pronunciation: \pȯrt-ˈman-(ˌ)tō\

Function: noun

Inflected Form(s): plural port·man·teaus or port·man·teaux \-(ˌ)tōz\
Etymology: Middle French portemanteau, from porter to carry + manteau mantle, from Latin mantellum — more at port
Date: 1579

1 : a large suitcase
2 : a word or morpheme whose form and meaning are derived from a blending of two or more distinct forms (as smog from smoke and fog)

see also: celebrity couple nicknames

Obama push to have pull?

Olympic notebook

Obama push to have pull?

By John Powers Globe Staff / September 29, 2009

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President Obama’s decision yesterday to go to Copenhagen after all and make his hometown’s case in person before the International Olympic Committee on Friday just might nudge Chicago past Tokyo, Madrid, and Rio de Janeiro in the chase for the 2016 Games, which likely will be decided by a handful of ballots.

At the very least, Obama’s presence will put the US bid on equal diplomatic footing since Spain’s King Juan Carlos and Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez, Japan’s Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, and Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva all will be present. The race is so close and so volatile that the presence of a magnetic chief of state could make the difference, as Tony Blair did for London and Vladimir Putin for Sochi.

It’s the first time a US president has shown up for the vote and Obama will be accompanied by both of the country’s First Ladies - wife Michelle and Oprah Winfrey.

Chicago, hoping to be the first American summer host since Atlanta in 1996, has a decidedly stronger bid than New York did for 2012, most notably an excellent venue package and a creative public-private financial guarantee. But the choice may well come down to geopolitics, which should be more intricate than usual. When London nipped Paris last time, four of the five finalists were from Europe. This time the four bid cities come from four continents, which should make the usual vote-shifting even more complex once the bottom city in each round is eliminated.

Historically, the early leaders lose as often as not - Madrid was in front after two rounds for 2012, Beijing after three for 2000, and Athens after two for 1996, and Pyeongchang had a big lead over Vancouver after the first ballot for 2010. The way the fickle five-ringed wind has been blowing, Rio and Chicago were thought to have the edge heading into the final few days, but none of the chitchat will matter once the IOC’s 106 members go behind closed doors.

Said president Jacques Rogge: “All the scenarios are possible.’’

Don’t be late
The leaves are just turning but the World Cup short-track speedskating season already is at its midpoint and the US Olympic team is back from Asia, looking to earn qualifying spots for Vancouver at the November meets in Montreal and Marquette, Mich. Three members of the 2006 team earned return tickets at this month’s trials in Marquette. Making their third squad were two-time gold medalist Apolo Anton Ohno and Allison Baver, who made a remarkable comeback after breaking her right leg slamming into the boards in Bulgaria in February. J.R. Celski, who needed surgery after slicing open his left leg near the knee after a spill is expected back soon, also made the squad, along with Jordan Malone, Travis Jayner, and 17-year-old Simon Cho. Katherine Reutter was the top qualifier on the women’s squad, which includes Turin veteran Kimberly Derrick, Alyson Dudek, and Lana Gehring. Missing out were 2006 team members Maria Garcia, Anthony Lobello, and J.P. Kepka. Since the host Canadians already held their trials and the South Koreans and Chinese handpick their teams, the Americans didn’t want to wait until their usual December date. While the early selection gives the squad more time to prepare for the Games, it precludes a late bloomer from making the team and rewards skaters who peak early. “It’s like the Tour de France,’’ says Ohno. “If you pick people six months early, you might have a different outcome.’’
Everybody in pool
There’ll be more than twice as many candidates for the US Olympic men’s ice hockey team than there were invitees to last month’s orientation session in Illinois. “There’s a pool of 75 or so that we’re going to fish out of,’’ says general manager Brian Burke, the Maple Leafs GM. “The auditions for this team start on Oct. 1.’’ The 23-man roster, which will include three goalies, will be announced at the end of December. That’s significantly later than the 1998 team, the first to use NHLers, was selected, which was deemed too early. “We had some people who didn’t deserve to be going and some who were kept off who did,’’ says Ron Wilson, coach of that team and this one. If he had his druthers, Burke would pick the roster as late as possible. “I’d name it the day before we got on the plane,’’ he says. “That would be optimal.’’
Not time for Miller
Bode Miller admitted to a Brett Favre moment when he decided to return to the US ski team last week after some soul-searching. “You walk away and there’s obviously a big hole left where that sport was,’’ observed the former world champ, who cut last season short after winning no races. “Especially in my case - it’s my main form of expression.’’ Miller’s reentry on the World Cup circuit likely won’t be until December at Beaver Creek, Colo. . . . A rookie-heavy US wrestling team received a rough initiation at last week’s world championships in Denmark, winning only three medals in the 21 events - silver (Jake Herbert, 84 kg) and bronze (Tervel Dlagnev, 120 kg) in men’s freestyle and silver in greco-roman (Dremiel Byers, 120 kg). The grecos finished 15th overall and the women failed to win a medal for the first time . . . US cyclist Kristin Armstrong left the road as a big wheel after claiming her second time-trial title at last week’s world championships in Switzerland. “I can’t think of any better way of saying goodbye to the sport,’’ declared the 36-year-old Armstrong, who just missed a road race medal when she was outsprinted. Her fourth place still was the best showing by an American in the event since Jeanne Golay’s bronze in 1994.
Keeping up with Jones
With more than three dozen Olympic medals still up for redistribution in the Marion Jones case, the IOC says it wants everything resolved next month. Two issues have held things up - the possibility of more names surfacing from the BALCO investigation and the appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport from Jones’s relay teammates, who lost their medals along with Jones even though there’s no evidence that they were doped. Since Jones won three golds and two bronzes in Sydney, it’s a five-way headache for the IOC. The biggest problem is the 100 meters, since the heiress-apparent is Greece’s Katerina Thanou, who later was banned for two years for ducking a doping test in Athens. Odds are the IOC might just vacate the title . . . With two events still remaining this year, Kenya’s Sammy Wanjiru and Germany’s Irina Mikitenko have wrapped up the World Marathon Majors titles, assuming that nobody tries to run both Chicago and New York three weeks apart. Mikitenko, who leads Dire Tune by 35 points, will take on defending champion Lidiya Grigoryeva and former victor Deena Kastor in the Windy City Oct. 11 while Wanjiru, who’s 15 points ahead of recent Berlin victor Haile Gebrselassie, faces defending champion Evans Cheruiyot. Marilson Gomes dos Santos will go for his third New York title Nov. 1 against a field that includes former champions Martin Lel, Paul Tergat, and Hendrick Ramaala plus US stars Ryan Hall and Brian Sell, who’ll both be making their Gotham debuts. Previous winners Jelena Prokopcuka and Ludmila Petrova are the top women. To celebrate the 40th race, any former victor who wins will get a $70,000 bonus added to the $130,000 payout.
Long run is over
After a seven-year run at the Reggie Lewis Center, the US indoor track and field championships are heading for higher ground, moving to Albuquerque for the next three Februaries. The event last was held there in 1966, back when the AAU ran the sport . . . The 1960 US Olympic men’s basketball team, which sent 10 players to the NBA, had both its coach (Pete Newell) and top star (Oscar Robertson) enshrined in the FIBA Hall of Fame this month, along with Kay Yow, who directed the American women to their first gold medal at a nonboycotted Games in 1988. Newell and Yow both died within the past year.

U.S. to Honduras: End emergency decree now

U.S. to Honduras: End emergency decree now

  • Story Highlights
  • Roberto Micheletti said he would repeal decree but not be immediately
  • Decree clamps down on public gatherings, lets government close news media
  • Jose Manuel Zelaya was ousted as president of Honduras three months ago
  • Zelaya has returned to Tegucigalpa and is holed up in Brazilian Embassy
updated 2 hours, 33 minutes ago
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TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (CNN) -- The U.S. State Department is calling on Honduras' de facto president to immediately rescind an emergency decree that limits constitutional rights such as freedoms of expression, travel and public congregation.

Robert Micheletti, de facto president of Honduras, says he'll repeal an emergency decree, but not immediately.

Robert Micheletti, de facto president of Honduras, says he'll repeal an emergency decree, but not immediately.

"The freedoms inherent in the suspended rights are inalienable and cannot be limited or restricted without seriously damaging the democratic aspirations of the Honduran people," said State Department spokesman Ian Kelly in a statement late Monday night.

Earlier Monday, Roberto Micheletti announced he would repeal the law, but it would not be immediately. The decree will undergo a legal review, he said.

Still, Micheletti's announcement was an about-face. He had announced the policy less than 24 hours earlier in response to unrest that increased significantly after ousted President Jose Manuel Zelaya secretly returned to Honduras on September 20 and took refuge in the Brazilian embassy.

The 45-day decree announced Sunday night forbids any unauthorized public gatherings, allows officials to make arrests without a judicial order and lets the government close down news media that threaten "peace and order."

Micheletti said he would consult with the supreme court to repeal the decree, after a meeting with the leading presidential candidates.

"This decision was made because (Zelaya) was calling for insurrection ... but I'm going to listen to the other powers of the state and we're going to make the most wise decision in the interests of Honduras," Micheletti said, according to the newspaper La Prensa.

Monday marked the three-month anniversary of Zelaya's ouster in a military-led coup on June 28.

In the wake of Micheletti's decree, Jose Miguel Insulza, secretary general of the OAS, said the Canal 36 TV station and Radio Globo were reported closed.

The owner of Canal 36, Esdras Amado Lopez, told CNN that 60 soldiers entered his station Monday morning to shut it down. They removed all of the equipment, he said.

"They say that we offended the dignity of the president of Honduras, Roberto Micheletti," Lopez said, adding that he sees his station not as pro-Zelaya, but "pro-people."

Honduran soldiers were stationed in front of the shuttered TV and radio stations and would not allow anyone to enter.

The United Nations, the OAS and the European Union have condemned the coup and demanded that Zelaya be reinstated. Micheletti has vowed that Zelaya will never return to power and has said the deposed president will be arrested if he comes out of the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa, the nation's capital.

Micheletti has accused Zelaya of using the embassy to instigate an insurrection and this weekend gave the Brazilian embassy 10 days to decide the ousted president's status. Brazil rejected the Honduran ultimatum.

On Monday night, Zelaya addressed the United Nations General Assembly via a mobile phone that his foreign minister held up at the podium.

A "serious crime is taking place when the voice of the people is silenced and when the people who are being repressed are likewise silenced," Zelaya said.

Guinean soldiers 'lost control'

Guinean soldiers 'lost control'

Guinean police arrest a protester on September 28, 2009 in front of the biggest stadium in the capital Conakry
The military leader said even he could not control all the soldiers

Some Guinean soldiers lost control at an opposition protest in the capital, Guinea's military leader Captain Moussa Dadis Camara has admitted.

He said in an interview on French and Senegalese radio that the security forces had been provoked by a stampede.

At least 87 people died when soldiers opened fire to disperse the rally sparked by rumours that Capt Camara wants to run for president next year.

There has been worldwide condemnation of the violence.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged the Guinean authorities to exercise maximum restraint, while the West African regional body Ecowas is reported to be pursuing sanctions against Conakry.

Three of four opposition leaders arrested after the unrest have been released.

The BBC's Alhassan Sillah in Conakry says Cellou Diallo remains in hospital.

On Monday, a doctor at a government hospital in Conakry said his wards looked like "a butchery".

'Only the beginning'

Our reporter says Capt Camara did not say how many people had died, but acknowledged that "uncontrollable soldiers" were responsible.

He said even as head of state it was difficult to control them when there was tension in the country.

Captain Moussa Dadis Camara (left) talking to General Mamadou Bah Toto Camara
Capt Camara (L) initially said he would not contest the polls

Capt Camara staged a coup last December hours after the death of President Lansana Conte, who had ruled for more than two decades.

The military takeover initially had some popular support, but in recent weeks there have been several anti-government protests.

They appear to have been sparked by hints from Capt Camara that he may stand for president in elections due in January 2010.

In Conakry, demonstrators gathered outside the capital's largest stadium, carrying placards reading "No to Dadis" and "Down with the army in power".

But the demonstration had been banned and the stadium was closed and guarded by large numbers of police.

Clashes between police and demonstrators followed, with officers charging the crowds and firing live ammunition.

Guinea expert Gilles Yabi told the BBC's Focus on Africa programme that the rally was not a surprise.

"This is only the beginning of demonstrations and counter-demonstrations we can expect in the next few months," he said.

Should Capt Camara stand for president, he said, it would be a violation of the tacit agreement between military and civil forces which has kept him in power.

And it would mark a perpetuation of the kind of rule that Guinea has seen for the past decade - which the military had promised to sweep away.

Capt Camara's rule has been characterised by eccentric displays of power - such as forcing members of the elite presidential guard to beg for forgiveness on national TV after they roughed up a veteran officer.

Former aides and officials have been accused of corruption and links to the drugs trade, including the son of former President Lansana Conte, who was shown confessing on TV to smuggling cocaine.

Are greed and capitalism forever joined at the hip?

Are greed and capitalism forever joined at the hip?

Denver Business Journal - by Paula Moore

"The point is, ladies and gentlemen, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works." -- Gordon Gekko, "Wall Street"

The movie "Wall Street," which turned "greed is good" into something of a national mantra, has been airing on television lately. While it's still entertaining, it also seems dated.

In the 15 years since the movie's release, greed doesn't seem so good anymore. The bursting of the dot-com bubble, investor flight from the stock market, Enron Corp.'s collapse in this country's biggest bankruptcy ever and last September's terrorist attacks have seen to that.

Even disregarding the problems that religions and ethics have with greed, the idea has other difficulties these days.

At its most basic level, greed isn't healthy, according to medical people. It's stressful, creating negative energy that "can undermine our positive, productive energy," according to cardiologist Dr. George Shapiro of Scarsdale, N.Y., writing for HeartHealth That negative energy, in turn, can lead to migraine headaches, ulcers and even heart failure.

Greed even can keep job seekers from getting the positions they want, say some executive search professionals. People interviewing for jobs sometimes inflate their current salaries in order to get more money -- sometimes to unrealistic levels. They may ask for 25 percent or 50 percent raises.

"However, they may price themselves out of the market," R. Gaines Baty, head of a Dallas search firm of the same name, told The Wall Street Journal earlier this year.

Greed for information by Web "stores" has caused shoppers to abandon their computer-animated shopping carts before they get to the virtual check-out line -- and the online retailers to lose business. Such sites are often so intent on getting customer data such as name, address and credit card numbers, they fail to provide information shoppers want, such as products' availability, price and shipping cost.

Advocates of residential real estate brokerage firms representing just home buyers or just sellers -- not both as they have traditionally -- like to talk about the greed of dual agency. They contend salespeople at one company working both sides of a transaction can't be true advocates for any of their clients.

With a dual agency, it's too easy to inflate a home price or push a bad deal so an agent doesn't lose out on a juicy commission.

But as long as there's capitalism, there will be greed, according to some observers of American business. Capitalism has a good side -- the desire to produce, work hard and make a profit -- but taken to the extreme, that good can turn bad. It can lead to greed.

"Capitalism's bad genes cannot be separated from its good genes since both flow from the fact that capitalism taps into the greed that seems to be built into human beings," Lester C. Thurow, an economics professor and ex-head of the business school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote in the Boston Globe last year. "The desire to have more, however much one already has, is the human desire that makes capitalism work."

The creators of the digital industry -- this country's Bill Gateses -- are examples of capitalism at its best and worst, according to Paulina Boorsook, a Wired magazine writer and author of "Cyberselfish: A Critical Romp Through the Terribly Libertarian Culture of High Tech." Boorsook asserts the same "curious child" quality that allowed these tech whizzes to create a new business with just their creativity and vision, plus some venture capital, also has an adolescent, narcissistic, greedy side.

A. Alfred Taubman, the ex-retail developer credited with helping to invent the shopping mall and former chairman of the Sotheby's auction house, is another example of what can happen when profit motive goes unchecked. Taubman was convicted early this year of lining his own pocket by fixing Sotheby's prices, in cahoots with rival auction firm Christie's.

But pundits have wondered why he did it because he didn't need the money. Even before Taubman's illegal activities, he was worth $1 billion, owned his own Gulfstream jet and had houses in New York, London and Palm Beach. He was a generous philanthropist, contributing large sums to Harvard University and the University of Michigan especially.

After Taubman's conviction, psychiatrist Allan Manevitz speculated in Artnet Magazine that people with his kind of power can become narcissistic to the point where they create their own reality. The rules that apply to the rest of us don't apply to them, and they no longer see the consequences of their actions. Their appetites can't be satisfied.

"Then there is the element of greed, of not having enough," Manevitz told the magazine.

Unlike Taubman, "Wall Street's" young hero, played by Charlie Sheen, can't bring himself to undermine his morally upstanding father, played by Sheen's real father, Martin Sheen, for his own profit. In the end, even the movie concludes that greed is bad.

Monday, September 28, 2009

World War 2: Hitler's next aggression

World War 2: Hitler's next aggression

Will he try an autumn coup in Holland? At the moment progress of the war requires little comment.

Adolf Hitler.
Adolf Hitler.

Article first published in the Daily Telegraph, Sept 25, 1939.

On the Western Front the lull continues, and in the East Warsaw’s gallant resistance still evokes our admiration. But this war did not begin with the invasion of Poland. It has been in progress since the early years of Hitler’s regime. It may be well, therefore, to recall the development of Hitler’s strategy as affording possibly an indication of his future plans.

Every strategist, political or military, tends to have a technique of his own which success encourages him to follow, till sometimes it leads him to disaster. Hitler’s strategy, which we know did not always meet the approval of his General Staff, has obviously been to attain successive limited objectives and to avoid war on a great scale.

His first step was to secure his base by air raid precautions, by concealed rearmament and by the military reoccupation of the Rhineland. Then Austria, Czechoslovakia and Poland fell to successive coups. But for the intervention of the Western Powers on the one hand and Soviet Russia on the other Rumania might have been his next objective.

Now that objective is unattainable, however, and he finds himself confronted by the Western Powers, is there a chance of his still employing his special technique.

Berlin, we are told, expects a great German offensive, but it will be more in accordance with Hitler’s strategy to use his defences of the Siegfried Line to secure his base and to look for a united objective for an offensive strike – an objective which might be attained with little interference by the Allies and which might facilitate further operations.

Winter is approaching, and he might consider it better to use the months before it comes to carry through another rapid coup than to embark on a final decisive struggle which winter would almost certainly interrupt.

Holland suggests itself as such an objective and Hitler certainly would not be deterred from attacking her by his promises. If Belgium could be induced to adhere to her neutral attitude the Dutch could receive little assistance. Holland overrun would not only afford an advanced base for air attack on this country and facilities for U-boat warfare, but it would encircle the defences of Belgium and prepare the way for a greater offensive next year on a frontage giving opportunities for manoeuvre and one more suitable to German numbers than the present frontage of contact.

Berlin’s expectation of an offensive, however, may be only wishful thinking, and, of course, Hitler may continue to stand on the defensive in the West, still hoping that the Allies will accept, as Mussolini suggests, the fait accompli in Poland.

Liberals Seek Health Care Access for Illegals

Liberals Seek Health Care Access for Illegals

A group of House Democrats say it's unfair to bar illegal immigrants from paying their own way in a government-sponsored exchange

Sunday, September 27, 2009


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Fearful that they're losing ground on immigration and health care, a group of House Democrats is pushing back and arguing that any health care bill should extend to all legal immigrants and allow illegal immigrants some access, The Washington Times reported on Monday.

The Democrats, trying to stiffen their party's spines on the contentious issue, say it's unfair to bar illegal immigrants from paying their own way in a government-sponsored exchange. Legal immigrants, they say, regardless of how long they've been in the United States, should be able to get government-subsidized health care if they meet the other eligibility requirements.

"Legal permanent residents should be able to purchase their plans, and they should also be eligible for subsidies if they need it. Undocumented, if they can afford it, should be able to buy their own private plans. It keeps them out of the emergency room," said Rep. Michael M. Honda, California Democrat and chairman of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.

Honda was joined by more than 20 of his colleagues in two letters laying out the demands.

Coverage for immigrants is one of the thorniest issues in the health care debate, and one many Democratic leaders would like to avoid. But immigrant rights groups and the Democrats who sent the letters say they have to take a stand now.

Where in the World is Hitler's Skull?

Where in the World is Hitler's Skull?

Monday, September 28, 2009

A skull long believed to be that of Adolf Hitler actually belonged to a woman, according to an American scientist who has taken DNA samples from it.

The skull was taken by Soviet forces in 1945 when they found charred remains outside the Nazi dictator's bunker in Berlin.

The Russians said at the time that the findings backed claims that Hitler had shot himself on April 30, 1945, and then been cremated along with his wife, Eva Braun.

Now, however, archaeologist and bone specialist Nick Bellantoni says the skull really belonged to a woman aged under 40 and not Hitler - who was 56 when he died.

Neither does Mr Bellantoni believe the skull belongs to Braun, Hitler's long-time girlfriend and last-minute wife, who is thought to have killed herself by taking cyanide and would therefore not have had a bullet wound - as this skull has.

The Russians say they have never claimed the skull itself was the chief reason for their belief the skull was Hitler's.

Instead, they point to dental records as confirmation that Hitler killed himself.

Exclusive: Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili on 'Your World',2933,555461,00.html

This is a rush transcript from "Your World With Neil Cavuto," September 24, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Some kudos from Hugo:


HUGO CHAVEZ, VENEZUELAN PRESIDENT (through translator): It doesn't smell of sulfur here anymore.



CHAVEZ: It doesn't smell of sulfur. It's gone. No, it smells of something else. It smells of hope.


CAVUTO: All right, now Venezuela President Hugo Chavez is singing President Obama's praises at the United Nations — Venezuela today, Libya yesterday; two rogue states, two endorsements.

With friends like that, who needs enemies?

My next guest knows a thing or two about dealing with tough guys, especially guy who want him dead. He dodged bombs when his country was at war with Russia last year. Remember that? Mikheil Saakashvili is the president of Georgia. He's going to be addressing the United Nations tonight.

He has all his security team in here in the studio with us, so not a single tough question will be asked.


CAVUTO: Mr. President, very good to have you.

MIKHEIL SAAKASHVILI, PRESIDENT OF GEORGIA: I mean, I'm not Hugo Chavez, definitely.



SAAKASHVILI: You can ask any question you want.

CAVUTO: There's no sulfur here.

SAAKASHVILI: In this studio, lots of sulfur, from his point of view.


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CAVUTO: Let me ask you. This is my first chance to talk to you with more time gone by since the dustup with Vladimir Putin, a man who has said some pretty crass about you, not the least of which that he wants you dead. That is pretty scary stuff.

SAAKASHVILI: No, I don't think so, because I think that that is usual.

I mean, from what Georgia represents, from the point of view of Vladimir Putin, is something that cannot exist. This is the country that managed to defy him. He had — he invaded us with the same number of troops as the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. He wanted us gone as a country. And he wanted me dead.

And, I mean, he wanted certain parts of my body as well, as he proclaimed publicly. Well, when I heard about that and I heard about...

CAVUTO: Yes, that was very painful when I heard that particular image.

SAAKASHVILI: No, but, I mean, Nicolas Sarkozy, president of France, like, you should really get to notorious to the point when Nicolas Sarkozy speaks about parts of your body, I mean, basically Putin telling him about that.


SAAKASHVILI: And when I heard about them, I said, well, they will not have enough ropes for that. And I still insist on that, because one year since their invasion, Georgia not own only survived, but we are, like, in World Bank business ratings, it's like the top places to make business, we are number 11 in the world, just little bit behind the United States and ahead of Finland, Germany, Japan. And Russia, if you are interested, is like 105th. In terms of corruption, Russia is next to Nigeria. We are next to — and Nigeria and Venezuela, by the way, especially Venezuela...


CAVUTO: You know, Mr. President, do you ever...

SAAKASHVILI: And we are next to Denmark and Netherlands. And it is quite something.

CAVUTO: But — it is something, but I always — when you tempt the tiger, the tiger can either attack or just — just pace, just wait.

Do you sense, as many in the foreign policy community say, that — that he's just, sitting us out, just waiting?

SAAKASHVILI: Absolutely.

I mean, people tell me, please don't give them pretext. And that's — I argue with my friends, these kind of guys don't need pretext. They need the situation. They need to feel that, you know, the United States, free world, that — diverted somewhere else. They have lots of other allies, other bad guys, you know, like Hugo Chavez.

You know, he — last year, Putin invaded Georgia, occupied two of our regions, wanted to take the whole of the country, couldn't make it, took the regions. We have half-a-million refugees. That is to say, one-tenth of our population. It's like exactly same thing what Nazi Germany did with Czechoslovakia and Sudetenland.

And, you know, the only country that really fully recognized it in the world, guess who? Hugo Chavez. And that shows you something. I mean, I don't even think Hugo Chavez knows where Caucasus is. I don't know to which school did he went, but...


CAVUTO: But what do you think of the fact that our president is — is — has more friendly relations with Vladimir Putin, was saying some very flattering things about people who used to not say very flattering things about us, and that there might be talk of a deal between Vladimir Putin and our president to slap sanctions on Iran, and that maybe you're, you know, collateral damage here?

SAAKASHVILI: Look, first of all, I think President Obama clearly said about Vladimir Putin that he's (INAUDIBLE) in the past, and the — and I think his body language, not only things he has said in Moscow about Georgia. We're OK. We're good.

Now, this is one issue. The other issue is that...

CAVUTO: You're talking about what our president said or what Vladimir Putin said?

SAAKASHVILI: Yes, what President Obama said.

CAVUTO: So, you, you're fine with President Obama?


But the point here is — and we should look at it from the point of view of the Russians. The Russians — I mean, Russia, as it is today, the Russian government, and the Russians, they all the time — this is the kind of government in Moscow that, first of all permanent needs crisis and, second permanent needs small victories, and not over Georgia.

Georgia is too small with them. When they fought with us last year, they fought with the U.S. When Hugo Chavez backed them, he thinks he backed them against the U.S., not some Georgia somewhere there.

The way he does it, the way they think it, they scored — the way they react to some of the things from here and from Washington, against all the intentions of Americans, and I mean, I think...

CAVUTO: But we're looking at stuff that happened last year, Mr. President, when you were — this is actually the attempt on you, where they were bombing, I think, and they were targeting you. Now, they say no, but they — clearly, they were.

So, you don't think something like that could happen again?

SAAKASHVILI: Look, I know people here in the U.S. And I have practiced law two blocks away from your studio here. I know this city. I know this — I think I know Americans.

And I think, with anybody in the world, we have close ties with are Americans. I know people are sick and tired of war zones, and think that Georgia is just another war zone, like Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan. You know, we are fed up for that.

But, in fact, we are a very, very normal country. As I said, in terms of investments, we are at par with Netherlands, with Hong Kong, with Singapore, with America, with U.K. We are a very modern-looking country. We're a country with lots of young energy, a country that has lots of good supporters like, you know, all the countries of Eastern Europe and Western Europe...


CAVUTO: But, with this president, Mr. President, you have as good relations as you did with President Bush?

SAAKASHVILI: Yes. Well, I have to say that we concluded strategic agreement with President Bush.

CAVUTO: Right.

SAAKASHVILI: But it got implemented under this administration.

CAVUTO: So, things are continuing? Because what raises — and I know you have expressed an openness, willingness to take some of those Gitmo detainees.

SAAKASHVILI: Absolutely.

CAVUTO: Where does that stand?

SAAKASHVILI: Absolutely. You know, whatever we can do to help America on its War on Terror, we will do.

We have our — we had our one brigade in Iraq until the end, like one full brigade, the best brigade of Georgian troops. And we don't have a numerous army, but I believed in the cause.

I strongly believe that, you know, we should help to stabilize Afghanistan. That's why we're sending more than 600 people there, mostly with the Americans. And...

CAVUTO: Yes, but what if our president doesn't commit more troops to Afghanistan? Would you commit more troops?

SAAKASHVILI: Well, you know, first of all, I hope — I mean, for — it is everybody's battle. I mean, it is not only America's battle. But I know every time Americans get vulnerable somewhere, how bad guys...


CAVUTO: No, no, I understand that. But if he — if the president decides, no, I'm not going to send anymore troops, what would you do?

SAAKASHVILI: Well, I'm not...


SAAKASHVILI: ... to comment on that.

But I spoke to General Petraeus the other day, when I basically committed to him troops. And he was highly — he really was praising Georgian troops a lot. And he was very optimistic.

I know presently all the people are optimistic. And I think this is the country which ultimately...

CAVUTO: Would you not be optimistic if the president says no to more troops?

SAAKASHVILI: Well, I think this is the country that ultimately takes right decisions. And I think that's — that also means that I think this administration will take the right decision.

CAVUTO: Which would be more troops?

SAAKASHVILI: Well, this is not up to me, again, to comment.


SAAKASHVILI: You know, we have...

CAVUTO: The security guard was getting antsy here. I think I may have pushed my luck. All right.

SAAKASHVILI: No, no, you know how it is.

CAVUTO: All right. All right.

SAAKASHVILI: In reality — the reality is, you know, we just had Vaclav Havel publishing letter in support of Georgia.

CAVUTO: All righty.

SAAKASHVILI: You have Hugo Chavez on the other side.

And I think Georgia an idea of country that, free, and independent small nation, can survive among very bad authoritarian trends...

CAVUTO: All right. All right. Understood.

SAAKASHVILI: ... and can still be a friend of America.

CAVUTO: Gotcha.

SAAKASHVILI: ... and stand by side of America...


CAVUTO: President or not, we're going to go to a commercial.

SAAKASHVILI: Thanks, Neil.

CAVUTO: Mr. President, thank you.

SAAKASHVILI: Thanks. Thank you.

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