Friday, January 30, 2009

Links 30 JAN 09

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Links 29 JAN 09,8599,1874702,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Constant Internet Forum/Blog Use Can Make You An Asshole:

I'm certain I'm included...

Talk show catfight:

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Late Links 28 JAN 09

Huzzah! The Republicans in the House do something right:

17 FEB it is.

More Observations Wed 28 JAN 09

I shoveled the driveway. All the way to the plowed street.

I have looked upon my work and It Is Good.

After finishing my exertions, I couldn't resist giving a lurk to my old political site.

There are two perspectives I have:

I got out at the right time. The elction is over, those who lost are in denial, one part of the winning side is tripping (a minority), and the majority of the winning side realizes that they are Wile E. Coyote after catching the Road Runner:

Ta Da!- NOW WHAT?!?

The other perspective is more important, and acknowledged only by a few on the board:

We're screwed. No fiscal stimulus can fix this economy. The debt is just too great; world-wide.

The airplane is going down. All that is left is to choose a forced landing spot, before we reach V-s (stall speed).

All the repercussions that follow are inevitable.

Again, a great time to leave a pointless shouting match. I do miss many of the posters, but, as in one poster's opinion, a few idiots can ruin a good bar (his example was a condo association, but it still holds).

Links 28 JAN 09

ALERT: Boeing cutting 10,000

I believe it:

Raise the electric bill during a recession (depression)?

Cry for the bankers:,0,7068972.story

The Brits are willing to talk about class warfare:

No $50 million jet. Not yours:

Wish I could get one of these for my opponents on my old political board:

Consumer confidence at 37.7:

The wealthy are starting to hide:

Oh, look! US arms dealers selling illegal weapons to the Mexican drug lords. They are trying to take away our freedom again! The US government is going to confiscate all our guns!

Remember the stink the whackos put up just after Obama was elected? Can you say hypocrite?

MS is being stupid again with Win 7:,6910.html

More autonomous aircraft:

Note: This fiscal year, the USAF will buy more drones then manned aircraft. If fighter pilots being out of a job isn't 4T, what is? :)

Privacy just got diminished:

Can NASA learn?

Hallelujah: H-1B workers getting canned. 4T.

If it's worth stealing:

Dead Bankers:

Here come the MO State budget cuts and job losses:

STL has been in a 4T for a while; it's getting worse:

Note that SecDef has half his coat off:

Yahoo shot in the ass:

Good thing I discovered Google.

Brooks gets generational theory, again:

Observations 28 JAN 09

I just measured an average 7.5 inches/19 cm of snow in the back yard.

Tuesday, I woke up with horrible congestion, a sore throat, and an upset tummy. The reports of accidents due to the initial blast were also not encouraging. I called in.

Today, the weather event is over, the temp is up 10 degrees F from yesterday, and I've cleared off my steps and car. Max discovered that the snow was above his chest, at points, so he willingly came in for his treat. I've been cleaning up inside for two days...

I've started my taxes.

All the major STL TV stations put up a DTV Roadblock Monday night at 1825. Congress or not, they are unlikely to pay two power bills after 17 FEB. KNLC has already switched, and WRBU has done so (kinda sorta unofficially). I predict a lot of "transmitter failures" and "technical difficulties" to occur between 17 FEB and June.

If your strapped, and have to choose a converter box from Wal-Mart, get the RCA. The Magavox tuner is quite poor. That's why Wal-Mart has the RCA's sold out, and lots of Magnavox's.

For ten bucks more, you can have a Zenith DTT 901, or it's equivalent Insignia counterpart at Best Buy. The Apex for sale at Best Buy has a quite rare S-Video out, and nearly as good performance as the Zenith. It also has better captions and program guide. The Apex's only drawback is the same as the RCA's: You can't update channels. You have to rescan them all. If you live in an urban area, this is not a big problem. Rural viewers will want the Zenith's reception advantage.

The Apex has a feature that geeks drool over besides the S-Video- a signal meter that includes both absolute signal strength, and signal quality (S/N ratio). This allows you to hunt around inside your house (or point an outside antenna- break down and spend the money) for the best placing of the antenna.

Circuit City has sold off all the good stuff. What's left are empty shelves, or unsalable/too expensive items. The converter boxes were the first to be sold out, I wager...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Early Links 27 JAN 09

I'm sure Obama is terrified:

Nukes are expensive in more ways than one:,8599,1873887,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Bloody Monday casualty count goes up:

They are about to frisk my dog:{214FBE65-F8E2-4BF7-B747-D573811F9124}&dist=hplatest

Bill Kristol Canned At NYT:

So much for geek culture being immune to the economy:

There Is No Depression:

Monday, January 26, 2009

Bloody Monday

Links 26 JAN 09

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Lins 25 JAN 09

More Mexico 4T:

What, "misspeaking is a Federal Felony? Apple users would never do that:

John Thain, Office Politics Supergenius:,8599,1873835,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Evil puppy mill owners:

How the hackers are targeting the credit card processors: hacked:

MS Vista Woes:

It takes a depression to do something about H1-B's:

Suprise! TIF's are ripoffs:

First Bank (Dierberg's) in trouble:

Note the lying CEO in the picture.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

LOTS More Links 24 Jan 09,8599,1873143,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Good doggie:

Brits in full 4T funk:

COBRA'd health insurance too expensive:

Mad Magazine cutting back to quarterly:

Yahoo salary freeze:

Look how well your bailout money was used:

75% paid out in bonuses for losers.

Google sales UP 18%:

Retail Dead Pool:

Really 4T- Playboy cutting back:

Circuit City Tips:

The Brit papers can say what our papers can't:

Arnold could fire everyone, and not balance the CA budget:

Anybody told Jay Nixon about this?

E-Bay loses money:

Steve Jobe Lied?!:

Never. Apple guys are holy. Really.

Future for news?:

Another Obama meter:

PA Gov less candid than Arnold:

Limey mil-industrial complex lies too:

There Goes The Neighborhood:

Gee, I said this would *never* be abused:

Archimedes was on to calc- then got holy-rollered:

Links 24 JAN 09,5_1_WA22_LOTTO_S1.article,4670,NazisHighway,00.html

There Is No Depression:

Eat this, white trash. Proof positive you lost the Civil War again, and the election:

MS kills FlightSim Team:

Things must be *really* bad...

Another reason Higher Ed is in trouble:


Obama screws up:

There Is No Depression:

In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash- Charities Denied Loans:

Friday, January 23, 2009

Blago's Lawyer Quits

Never a good sign:

Small Market TV Blues

Not playing well in Peoria:

Links 23 JAN 09

Goodbye, loser:

John Murtha in trouble:

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Links 22 JAN 09

Warm and Fuzzy Rush:,8599,1873084,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

A history of snark:

White House IT Hell:

A bunch of Mac users move in to an MS shop.

Russian RORSAT spewing radioactive chunks:

"Just imagine what the Obama administration can do when it gets the computers working."


More on massive data breach:

No, the new Civic Generation is not coming in to it's own:

Not. The Millenials prepare to steamroller Gen X.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Links 21 JAN 09

Weren't the the cities supposed to be burning, and mass mayhem ensuing? :

Largest data breach to date:

Death Star Bank Losses:

Somebody paid attention:

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Links 20 JAN 09,8599,1872598,00.html

For those of you hoping Obama would blow it on his speech- you lose:,8599,1872738,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Obama's Speech:


Somebody ELSE Agrees With Me On BSG!

Monday, January 19, 2009

"It's Too Much Like Work!"- Why No Hotlinking

My spy network reports that while my page is visited, very few of my links are followed, because they are not "hotlinked"- clicking on the URL does not lead straight to the page referenced.

If this were a commercial site, I would be out of business. There are reasons the URL's are not hotlinked, the first being a reprehensible Deadly Sin:

1) I'm lazy (Sin: Sloth). And, I'm not very good at HTML. This blog is not a job. It's simpler to paste the URL of the article after reading it, than to insert HTML tags. And certainly, it raises a barrier to people who just want to read what I've linked to (see #2)

The geeks out there will pillory me for this. How do I expect to drive traffic to my blog, if I'm such a loser?

Simple. I don't care about driving traffic to my site. Once again, the blog is not my day job. It was created to centralize my incessant e-mails and internet posts, and rantings. Consider it a mercy that I'm not info-spamming people anymore. Think of the bandwidth and server space saved! The e-mail admins are pleased...

2) Many other sites require permission for hotlinking. Instead of courting those headaches, I leave the equivalent of Post-It notes, not abusing the content of others. Sure, you have to dial the number on the Post-It. But I'm trying to avoid content issues.

I apologize if this policy makes it more difficult for you to follow content. Yes, I know everyone is busy, and copying and pasting into an address bar takes time, and a little effort.

But, it is not being done to insult you, or make you fall for the "box of chocolates" effect. I just don't have the time to be Yahoo, Wikipedia, or Google. Consider these URL's to be a kind of historical archive, one that you can page through when not busy.

Notes: Many links expire, particularly the MSNBC ones. And some articles get past my "don't hotlink-it" filter, because I like them too much.


Somebody Agrees With Me On BSG!!

Links 19 JAN 09

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Links 18 JAN 09

Aviate, Navigate, Communicate. That Is The Order Of Things:

So, that's how you get the good comps from the casinos (money for education indeed):

Charter fails to make interest payments:

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Absolute Proof Of 4T

I understand that my view is not a majority view.

I told you so.

I told you so.

I told you so: We are all Cylons, and we are are all screwed up by our frakked-up childhood.

Ron Moore made BSG as Gen X's FU letter to the Boomers about having to come of age/responsibility in a 4T. FU for 1968-2008. Same shite as "Dark Knight".

Money quote from the article:

"We wanted to take the time to examine what happens to people when their dreams are shattered, when everything they held as true turns out to be an illusion. After a blow like that, how do you pick yourself up from the floor and go on? Are you able to pick yourself up at all?

This is perhaps the most universal theme you can explore. For the people of ragtag fleet, the dream was Earth. For those of us here on Earth, the dream could be many other things. It may be the house you saved all your life for but now can no longer afford to make payments on. The career you fantasized about since high school, went to college to prepare for, finally landed and loved, then lost when your company downsized. The woman or man you met who seemed to be everything you ever wanted to find in a lover, who betrayed your trust or left you or died. The flood waters that swept your entire neighborhood away. The war in a far away land that took your son or daughter or husband or wife. The spot on an X-ray that now wants to eat you alive."

Ron Moore invented The Borg, remember? The show's title is from the super-downer Ken Kesey novel, in which the lead character keeps getting hit until he fails. Which the BSG team openly admitted to in this article? And the "Goodnight Irene" suicide song?

How Gen X can you get?

Sci-fi is always about the present. This show will join The Prisoner and Blake's 7 as one of the ultimate weird and downbeat shows ever made.

I don't watch entertainment TV to make me feel bad. I have real life for that. I'm not interested in Gen X's pity party.

These guys will have erections for the rest of their lives because this was soo dark and sooo cool. No knock on the actors (who are magnificent), but the guys who wrote this should be locked in the same box in hell the Soprano's creator is going to.

I envision it as as the absolute hell of a stage production, where, at the finale, the audience rises up as one and either leaves or murders the cast and crew most painfully.

We don't need the Mythology Of The Twelve Cylons. We need the Twelve Steps, the first of which says "get over yourself"...

More Links 17 JAN 09

Bush scores 22% percent final grade:;topStoryHeadline

Lowest exit grade ever.

And Here's The Cover Article- from 1996.

A Century of Zionism
British journalist Geoffrey Wheatcroft takes stock of Theodor Herzl's "mad" idea.

November 1996

WITH a twist of irony that has become typical in Israel's history, this year's hundredth anniversary of the birth of Zionism is also a time of renewed Israeli-Palestinian violence, faltering peace negotiations, and deep divisions within the Jewish community.

In his new book, The Controversy of Zion: Jewish Nationalism, the Jewish State, and the Unresolved Jewish Dilemma, (Addison-Wesley, 1996) Geoffrey Wheatcroft, an Atlantic contributor, marks Zionism's anniversary by examining the intellectual traditions, people, and events that have led to today's Israel. The book, the winner of a National Jewish Book Award, begins with Zionism's genesis in nineteenth-century Europe, when Theodor Herzl argued that the Jews of the Diaspora would never be able to assimilate fully and that therefore the creation of a Jewish state was the only way to solve the "Jewish Question." Wheatcroft follows the story of Zionism until 1995, when the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin made appallingly manifest the divisive conflicts plaguing the nation that was supposed to be a source of healing and pride.

Wheatcroft recently spoke with The Atlantic Monthly's Katie Bacon.

Why did you decide to write about Zionism?

Excerpts from
The Controversy of Zion

# The Jewish Question -- from the Preface
# Theodor Herzl's Vision -- from Chapter Four: 'I have the solution . . .'
# The Great Adventure -- from Chapter Seven: 'America is Our Zion'
# A Jewish State is Born -- from Chapter Thirteen: Victors, not victims
# Groping Toward a Jewish Solution -- from Chapter Sixteen: Fractured friendships

* * *

Related articles from The Atlantic's archive

# "Zionist Aspirations in Palestine," July 1920. Anstruther Mackay, a military governor of Palestine during the First World War, argued that a Jewish State would cause long-term violence with the Arabs, who have a right to the land.

# "The Creed of an American Zionist," February 1945. As the dimensions of the destruction of European Jewry were just being realized, Rabbi Milton Steinberg defended the right of Jews to form a commonwealth in Palestine.

# The Atlantic Report: Israel. January 1952, June 1953, November 1957. Three articles by the editors of The Atlantic on the progress of the new nation during the fourth, fifth, and tenth years of its existence.

# Flashback: The State of Israel, November 1995. Articles from 1949 to 1993, by David Ben-Gurion and others, look at various aspects of the spiritual and national project that is Israel.

The best answer to that is something Disraeli said: "When I want to read a book I write one." I just became deeply interested in the story of Zionism and its effect on the Jewish people, and there wasn't a book that seemed to say what I wanted to read. I grew up in an upper-middle class family in Hampstead, near London, which in England is almost shorthand for mildly left intellectual progressivism. I'm not Jewish, but my parents had a lot of Jewish friends and colleagues. And I lived through some of the period I'm writing about. I can remember when -- in the fifties and sixties -- Israel was still a universally popular cause among liberals. That has ceased to be the case in the past thirty years, and I wanted to try to explain why. So I started to work backward to the founding of Zionism to see where the story came from.

In what ways is being an outsider to this story an asset?

It's difficult for me to say that it's helped me, but other people have said so. In particular, I've been touched by the generosity of Jewish scholars who might possibly have resented an outsider's stepping in on their subject. Several have said that I've brought a fresh eye to the story precisely because I'm outside the loop and therefore am not committed in the way that someone who is Jewish inevitably would be.

After Theodor Herzl came up with the "mad" idea of creating a homeland for Jews, many people compared Zionism with anti-Semitism. Why did they make this comparison?

In the early years of the Zionist movement, after Herzl wrote The Jewish State, most Jews were indifferent to the movement. But there was one minority of Jews that was passionately caught up with the Zionist idea, that supported and worked for it, and there was another minority that was opposed to it with an extraordinary vehemence that is now difficult to recapture. These Jewish anti-Zionists argued that Zionism was the other side of the coin of anti-Semitism: anti-Semites were saying that Jews couldn't be absorbed successfully into the broader secular societies of the western countries in which they lived, and the Zionists were saying exactly the same thing. Of course after the Second World War this, like all other forms of Jewish anti-Zionism, faded away.

Did the creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine change the way Jews were thought of in Europe?

It didn't greatly affect the position of the European Jews up to the 1930s. Many tried to leave Europe, but they found it increasingly difficult to get to Palestine -- and to get to America, which is where most of them would have gone if they'd had the opportunity. In many ways the most important event in the Jewish story in the period between 1910 and 1930 wasn't the Balfour Declaration, which created the Jewish homeland in Palestine; instead it was the American legislation of the early 1920s that ended immigration into America. If it hadn't been for that, there would have been millions more Jewish immigrants to the United States.

You say that "Jewry as a whole was converted to Zionism not by arguments but by events." Is there any way that the state of Israel could have been created, perhaps years later, without the events of the Second World War?

More to the point, Israel would have been different if it had been created many years before. It would have been established like New Zealand, or the United States, or Australia. At the time these countries were created, nobody really gave any thought to the rights of the indigenous peoples. The misfortune of Zionism was precisely that it belonged to the twentieth century. When I say that Jewry was converted to Zionism by events, I don't mean that Hitler created Israel, but what Hitler and the Final Solution unquestionably did was to create this identification between western Jewry and the new Jewish State, with the result that Jewish anti-Zionism, which had had a very strong tradition before then, really became morally impossible.

Could violence and dispossession have been avoided in creating Israel?

That's hard to imagine. Jewish settlement of a completely peaceful kind could only have taken place very, very slowly. But another misfortune of the Zionist project was that it coincided with an emerging Arab nationalism, particularly Palestinian nationalism. Some Israelis say that there's no such thing as Palestinian nationalism, to which the answer is that there was certainly no such thing as Palestinian nationalism a hundred years ago -- but that there is such a thing today, and to some extent it was created by Zionism and the advent of Israel.

How does the secular state of Israel now perceive the Judaic tradition and culture that led to its creation?

Zionism was a secular movement, very specifically so, and most of the early Zionists were aggressively secular and anti-religious. They saw Zionism, or Jewish nationalism, as something different from the traditional Jewish religion, which they either ignored or positively rejected. To some extent the enthusiasm for Zionism among the Jewish Diaspora was a kind of surrogate nationalism, in that it allowed them to maintain Jewish identity while no longer being very involved in Judaism. This has led to great complications today, because although Israel is technically a secular state, Jewish identity is invariably connected with religion. Paradoxically, you have a secular state where the religious leaders determine who can live there.

When Israel was created, did its leaders hope or expect that a wave of assimilated western Jews would move there?

I'm not sure whether they really did believe that would happen, but what happened was this. David Ben-Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israel, was not a stupid man. He must have realized that western Jews, in particular American Jews, had by the middle of the twentieth century achieved remarkable social ascent, stability, and prosperity. It was likely -- and indeed proved to be the case -- that very few of them would want to come live in Israel.

There was a most interesting moment, just after the creation of Israel, when Ben-Gurion said publicly that it was the duty of all western Jews to come live in Israel. The Jewish-American leadership called this a deplorable and insulting thing to say and told Ben-Gurion that if he didn't change his tune, crucial Jewish-American groups would stop supporting Israel. Ben-Gurion, who wasn't normally an apologetic sort of guy, did more or less apologize. Thereafter there was an unspoken agreement that the Israelis would no longer campaign for mass immigration from America to Israel and that in return they would expect the uncritical support of Jewish-Americans for the Israeli state, which they got.

What has Israel come to mean for Jews who don't live there? Has that meaning changed substantially since Israel's creation? What about since Yitzhak Rabin's assassination?

What Israel came to mean for Jews of the Diaspora was a great sense of pride and exhilaration -- a place they liked to think about, and in some cases to visit. But it must be said that not many of them actually wanted to go and live there. Certainly the pinnacle of identification with Israel by Jews who don't live there came in 1967, after the Six Day War. But since then, things haven't quite worked out as they should have done. Although most Jews today unquestionably feel some emotional identification with Israel, often a very strong one, it is not as uncomplicated as it was thirty years ago. In 1967 the idea was, "we are one" -- we western Jews, we American Jews, and we Israelis. Rabin's assassination demonstrated in a very dramatic and dreadful way that the Israelis are not one themselves -- they are a very deeply and bitterly divided society. If you're a Jewish-American, you cannot be one with an Israel that itself is not one.

The rise of the Likud Party is important here, too. When Israel was founded, very few Jews outside of Israel had heard of the group that subsequently became called the Likud. Vladimir Jabotinsky, who founded the Revisionist movement that advocated using violence to secure the Jews' position in Palestine, was very much a minority leader. When Menachem Begin, a former leader of the Irgun (which many considered a terrorist force) first visited the United States, in 1948, a letter signed by two dozen prominent Jews -- including Sidney Hook, Hannah Arendt, and Albert Einstein -- ran in The New York Times saying that Begin was a fascist and quasi-Nazi who should be shunned by all Jewish-Americans. Within thirty years he was Prime Minister of Israel, and today his successors are warmly defended on the Op-Ed pages of that same newspaper.

What has happened in the past fifty years is melancholy because after the Second World War there was a huge welling up of sympathy for Israel -- based on guilt, really, about what happened to the European Jews. The change in attitude in the last twenty years has been a kind of reaction to that. It is unjust, but not in quite the way that Israelis think. In some ways, Israel deserved more criticism in the first twenty years of her existence than in the past twenty years. Since 1967, the Israelis have not physically expelled any of the Arabs in the territories that they have conquered, whereas when Israel was created, in 1948, they did expel Arabs living within the country's original borders. But people at that time chose to overlook that fact.

Do American Jews share the philosophical or cultural values of Israelis?

Less and less, I would say, quite simply because Israel's most astonishing achievement has been the creation of a completely new nation, language, and culture. A hundred years ago most Jews who went to America and Palestine were Yiddish-speaking. Now two communities exist -- the American Jews who speak English and the Israeli Jews who speak Hebrew -- and remarkably few Jewish-Americans know Hebrew. There are now, funnily enough, more Arabs than Jewish-Americans who speak Hebrew.

Another profound difference between American Jews and Israelis is the founding philosophies of their respective nations. The United States is in its essence an absolute rejection of ethnic nationalism. To be an American you do not have to be something by your origin. You can become an American, as all Americans at some stage in their family history have done, almost by a political act of will. Israel is not like that. Israel is an outgrowth, or Zionism is an outgrowth, of the European nationalism that America rejected.

Does America hold Israel to a higher standard than the other countries it supports?

That is what Israelis often say. But when Israel says there's a double standard used to judge it, the answer is that Israel asks to be judged by a double standard. Of course it's true that we overlook the fact that neighboring Arab countries go around massacring their inhabitants from time to time, and we, the media, are much more critical of Israel for what in many ways are much smaller crimes. But Israel positively doesn't want to be judged by the same standards as Syria. It wishes to be regarded as a constitutional democracy that takes civil rights and human rights seriously.

Is the conflict between Israelis and Arabs any closer to being resolved than it was before the peace process began?

I just don't know what's going to happen, and I'm not at all one for making predictions. Conor Cruise O'Brien likes to say that the whole language of question and solution is not appropriate to matters such as Israel and Ulster. He would say that we're not dealing here with a question that has an answer; we're dealing with a conflict, and conflicts don't have answers, they have outcomes, usually after a good deal of upheaval and turmoil and suffering. In many ways the conflict between Israelis and Arabs looks closer to a solution than it did twenty or even ten years ago. But we saw how fragile it was after the recent outburst of violence. You would have to be very, very sanguine to think that something like that won't happen again.

You point out that over the past thirty years, the Holy Land, with its seven million people, has attracted more television and newspaper coverage than all of tropical Africa or all of India. Why this world-wide fascination?

The Israeli affair takes place in what one could almost call the spiritual and mystical center of the world, in a region that was very much in the center of the Cold War and that is peculiarly volatile. But I mentioned the intense media scrutiny not to offer an explanation for it but to present a paradox. The heart of my book is that a hundred years ago, Herzl said that he would resolve the Jewish Question by removing the Jews from the pages of history, normalizing them, and making them like any other nation. All the conflicts and anguish within the Jewish people would come to an end once they had a Jewish state. But have a look at the Op-Ed page of The New York Times any day of the week. It is a very ironical comment on Herzl's vision to see the sheer amount of space devoted to ferocious debate on the future of Israel by western commentators, notably by Jewish-Americans.

The Jewish question has not disappeared. Zionism has changed and complicated the Jewish question, but it has quite plainly not wound it up.

It's Not Like Anyone Saw This Coming 90 Years Ago...

As originally published in
The Atlantic Monthly

July 1920

Zionist Aspirations in Palestine

by Anstruther Mackay


THAT the Jews, once a powerful tribe and perhaps almost a nation, should, after the lapse of so many centuries, cherish aspirations to become a modern nation with a country of their own, is both commendable and romantic. But to-day, and indeed in all ages, aspirations must be made to fit in with hard facts. I propose in this article to discuss the question from a historical and practical standpoint, without sentiment in favor of either Jew or Arab, among both of which parties I have many friends.

I do not propose to consider Jewish history anterior to the exodus from Egypt. At that time they were a collection of tribes, twelve in number, of common descent, banded together with a common purpose and under common difficulties. As such, under very able leadership, they succeeded after many wanderings in squatting, just as the Bedouin tribes do to-day, on the cultivated and cultivable lands of a part of Syria, commonly called Palestine. In those days, and until the coming of the Roman Empire, society in the Middle East was entirely tribal. The ancient Israelites, where they could, drove out the tribes they found already settled on the soil, and where they could not dispossess their enemies, -- the Philistines, for instance, -- they dwelt side by side in uneasy proximity, with a constant inter-tribal war in process, with varying fortune.

So they dwelt in the land of Canaan for some centuries with considerable success, shining in particular in literature, producing what we now know as the Old Testament, praising and perhaps exaggerating their own exploits, and reviling their neighbors.

(It is believed to-day by many savants that the Old Testament description of Solomon's Temple was written by the Jews after their return from the Captivity, with the memory of the real splendors of Babylon fresh in their minds. It is possible that the actual temple was a simple place of worship. If it had been otherwise, it is hardly possible that no remains of it would be visible to-day, seeing that the temples of Egypt, which are so much older, remain, in some cases, almost in toto.)

Soon, however, the old cohesion among the Twelve Tribes vanished. Israel fell and disappeared from the earth. Judah remained for a few years and then was scattered to the uttermost ends of the old and new world. They have since lost their Eastern characteristics, both physically and mentally. To-day the Jewish settlers in Palestine are almost universally of Teutonic or Slavonic appearance, and all trace of Semitic or Eastern origin seems to have vanished from them.

Through the ages and through their wanderings they have kept, to a large extent, their religion, and that is a wonderful feat. But to-day some say that even their religion seems doomed. The younger and more virile of the Jewish settlers in Palestine sometimes profess openly, and more often in secret, the dogmas of atheism, agnosticism, or realism.

To-day it is the Zionist portion of this remnant of Judah, which, on the statement that for three or four centuries its ancestors owned the land from which nearly two thousand years ago they were driven, claims the whole of Southern Syria, the province of Palestine. These people even go so far, on what grounds is not clear, as to claim that their boundaries run from the town of Tyre on the north to the Egyptian village of El Arish in the Desert of Sinai on the south, and also, east of the Jordan, from the plain of Ammon to the Syrian desert, formerly the country of the Moabites.

Now if this interesting remnant was claiming an uninhabited country, or one in which the law of property did not exist, it might be an interesting though hazardous experiment to let them have it, and watch the result. Any practical experiment toward the attainment of a contented Jewish people would be welcome. At present, large communities of Jews never live in perfect amity with Gentile neighbors; and it would be instructive to see whether, in a self-contained Jewish state, they could live in amity with one another. It would also give them a chance to show whether they possess the attributes of a ruling people -- a question to which the answer is, at present, largely uncertain.

But the Syrian province of Palestine, about one hundred and fifty miles long and fifty miles broad, largely mountainous and sterile, contains at present a population of more than 650,000, divided as follows: Mohammedan Arabs, 515,000; Jews, 63,000; Christian Arabs, 62,000; nomadic Bedouins, 50,000; unclassified, 5000. Of these the Mohammedans and Christians are to a man bitterly opposed to any Zionist claims, whether made by would-be rulers or by settlers. It may not be generally known, but a goodly number of the Jewish dwellers in the land are not anxious to see a large immigration into the country. This is partly due to the fear that the result of such immigration would be an overcrowding of the industrial and agricultural market; but a number of the more respectable older settlers have been disgusted by the recent arrivals in Palestine of their coreligionists, unhappy individuals from Russia and Roumania brought in under the auspices of the Zionist Commission from the cities of Southeastern Europe, and neither able nor willing to work at agriculture or fruit-farming.

The old colonists believe that what is required to help the country is the immigration of a moderate number of persons, who should be in possession of some capital to invest in agriculture, or have technical knowledge of farming; not, as proposed by the Zionist Commission, an unlimited immigration of poor and ignorant people from the cities of Europe, who, if they are unable to make a living in Western cities, would most certainly starve in an Eastern agricultural country. The presence in Palestine of such agricultural experts as the late Mr. Aaronsohn, and Mr. Moses Levine of the Jewish Farm at Ben Shamer, near Ludd, both American Jews of great talent, is of the greatest advantage to the country, and is generally acknowledged so to be by all classes of the population. The arrival of more such colonists would be welcome to all but the whole population will resist the Zionist Commission's plan of wholesale immigration of Jews into Palestine at the rate of one hundred thousand a year, until a total of three millions has been reached, which number they claim the country can support if cultivated to its utmost.

The existing Jewish colonists would protest at such an experiment; but the Mohammedan and Christian Arabs would do more than protest. They would, if able, prevent by force the wholesale flooding of their country by Jewish settlers whom they consider strangers and Europeans. (The Jew in Palestine is always called by the Arabs 'Khawaya' -- Anglice, stranger.)

Any attempt at the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine, unless under the bayonets of one of the powers of the League of Nations, would undoubtedly end in a 'pogrom,' to escape from which in Europe is the Jew's main idea in coming to Syria. This hostility to the Jews is a bond of union between the Arab Moslems and the Christians, and nowhere in the East do these two denominations live in greater harmony, despite the traditional enmity between the Crescent and the Cross. (The Moslem-Christian Association was formed in 1918, with headquarters in Jaffa, to fight the policy of the Zionist Commission.)

It will be seen that, to fulfill their aspirations, the Zionists must obtain the armed assistance of one of the European powers, presumably Great Britain, or of the United States of America. To keep the peace in such a scattered and mountainous country the garrison would have to be a large one. Is the League of Nations, or any of the Western powers, willing to undertake such a task? But without such armed protection, the scheme of a Jewish state, or settlement, is bound to end in failure and disaster.


NOW, as the Zionist claims a historical right to the land, so also does the Arab, not content with the mere right of possession. The bulk of the Arab Moslems came into Syria with the Caliph Omar in the seventh century A.D. The Christians are still older, and are mainly descended from the converts of Constantine and Helena in the fourth century. A few of them may be descendants of the Crusaders; and in the villages around Jaffa there are a few Egyptians whose ancestors came into the country with Mohammed Ali's army as recently as ninety years ago. These latter are disliked intensely by the true Arabs.

The great families of Omari, Iagi, and Kleiri trace their descent actually from the Caliph Omar himself. The greater family of Hasseini, a member of which is to-day the enlightened Mayor of Jerusalem, traces its descent from the Prophet Mohammed himself. Throughout the thirteen hundred years during which Arabs, Turks, Crusaders, Turks, Egyptians, and yet again Turks, have ruled in Syria, these Arabs have remained in possession of the soil of the province of Palestine. Not content with this claim, they declare their descent from the ancient tribes of Canaan, -- Philistines, and the rest, -- who dwelt in the land even before the Israelites came up out of Egypt. The early Arabs married among the aborigines of the country, whom they found there at the time of their conquest. To support their claim, they point to the undoubted fact that such Philistine towns as Jimza, Ekron, Bethoron, and Gaza, mentioned in the Old Testament, exist to-day as inhabited villages under their Biblical names. The inhabitants of these ancient towns are Arab owners of the soil, who, the Zionists say, have no historical right to the land.

Certain Zionists writers in the London press have recently been making a most unfair use of the words 'Arab' and 'Bedouin.' In an article published recently it was stated that 'the Bedouin' question will in course of time settle itself, either by equitable purchase or by the Bedouin's desire for the nomadic life which he will find over the border in the Arab state.' If by these words the writer means the 50,000 nomadic Bedouins, no harm would be done and all parties would be pleased; for these Bedouins steal alike from Mohammedan, Christian, and Jew cultivators, and, except as breeders of camels and sheep, are of little use to the country. But he does not mean this. He hopes to buy out 'equitably' the half-million Mohammedan and sixty thousand Christian Arabs, who own and cultivate the soil -- a stable population living, not in Bedouin tents, but in permanent villages.

Should these landlords and farmers refuse this 'equitable' bargain, it is to be presumed that our Zionist writer, by forceful arguments to be applied by the protecting power, will arouse in them a desire for the nomadic life across the border. If the Zionists honestly believe that the land is occupied and worked by nomadic Bedouins without right of ownership, they should be informed that the Arab landowners possess title-deeds as good as, and much older than, those by which the American or English millionaire owns his palace in Fifth Avenue or Park Lane.

Agriculture is, and always will be, almost the sole industry of the country; the percentage of the three principal communities so employed is: Mohammedans sixty-nine, Christians forty-six, Jews nineteen. The Arabs, then, are the principal cultivators and the Jews are nowhere. During the last forty years, helped by the enormous financial backing, amounting to charity, of Baron de Rothschild of Paris and others, the Jewish colonists have met with fair success at fruit and vineyard culture. When they have tried growing cereals, they have failed, and at dairy-farming they have been far outdone by the Germans of Hilhelma. If these colonists, who presumably were picked men, with such financial help as they had from Europe and America, have met with such limited success, it is not likely that a large number of unskilled workers would be any more fortunate. Nor is it likely that the rich European and American Jews would be willing or able to satisfy, with their donations, the hundreds of thousands, even millions, of immigrants whom the Zionist Commission proposes to bring in. Moreover, a country cannot be run agriculturally on the culture of fruits and vines. Corn and olives are necessary for Palestine, and at the culture of these the average Mohammedan Arab is a much better man than the average European Jew.

The theory that the Jews are to come into Palestine and oust the Moslem cultivators by 'equitable purchase' or other means is in violation of principles of sound policy, and would, if accepted, arouse violent outbreaks against the Jewish minority. It would, moreover, arouse fierce Moslem hostility and fanaticism against the Western powers that permitted it. The effect of this hostility would be felt all through the Middle East, and would cause trouble in Syria, Mesopotamia, Egypt, and India. To this might be ascribed by future historians the outbreak of a great war between the white and the brown races, a war into which America would without doubt be drawn.


THE Holy Places of Palestine are objects of reverence to the Christian peoples of the world, in particular to the Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox communities. Jerusalem is the third Sacred City of the Moslems. A Jewish Palestine would bring the League of Nations, or the protecting power, into hostility with the Papacy; and, when the wave of Bolshevism has passed, with the whole of the Russian people, -- the most devout Christians in the world, -- who formerly used to come in their thousands as pilgrims annually to Jerusalem.

When in 1917 and 1918 the British army entered Palestine, it was received with acclamation and relief by the Arabs, Moslem as well as Christian, disgusted as they were by the incompetent government and oppressive methods of their former masters, the Turks. At first the British administration of the country was largely staffed by British officers lent by Egypt, men well acquainted with the Arabic language and accustomed to dealing with the Egyptian fellaheen, a people nearly akin to the Arab cultivators of Palestine. For a time all went well. The administration was just and made no discrimination between Mohammedan, Christian, and Jew. British rule was popular.

As these Anglo-Egyptian officials went back to their pre-war posts in Egypt, their places in Palestine were largely taken by officers from the army, many of them excellent men and good soldiers, but for the most part ignorant of the Arab language and the customs and feelings of the people. They were able to communicate with the Arabs only through interpreters. These latter were too often local Jews, or, if not Jews, 'Effendis' (semi-Europeanized Syrians), whose interests were by no means identical with those of the people. Only those who, possessing a knowledge of an Eastern language, have yet used an interpreter can realize how easy it is for their meaning to be perverted by one who is dishonest or incompetent.

From these causes; and the fact that, although the British officer is often unable to speak Arabic, the Zionist Jew can nearly always speak English, the Arabs now feel that the administration has fallen more and more under the influence of the Zionist Commission, which has succeeded in creating an impression among the Moslems and Christians that the Jews are all-powerful in the British Foreign Office, and that, if an officer shows himself sympathetic toward the Arabs, his removal can be secured.

A Christian from Jaffa writes as follows: 'We are already feeling that we have a government within a government. British officers cannot stand on the right side because they are afraid of being removed from their posts or ticked off.'

I do not believe that there is any cause for my correspondent's fears; but I believe him to be perfectly honest in imagining them.

The appointment of English Jews to some important posts, legal offices in particular, has been a mistake. However great the integrity of such officers, the local Jews naturally try to take advantage of their religious feelings and racial sympathies, while the mass of the population as naturally distrusts them.

At one time some of the Jewish colonists were very tactless, telling their Arab neighbors that, under the protection of England, the Jews would be given the Arab lands and the Moslems would become their servants. The bringing up, after the Armistice, of three battalions of Jewish troops, whose conduct toward the people was often very foolish, was another mistake. The result to-day is that the mass of the native population has become fanatical and anti-European. While I write, I hear that, during the last few days, a peaceful anti-Zionist demonstration has taken place in Jerusalem, in which ten thousand Moslems and Christians protested against the Zionist claims. A second similar demonstration might not be peaceful, but might easily develop into an anti-foreign rising. Then troops would have to be called in to quell it, and the result would be bloodshed. Is this to be allowed in the Holy Land?

If the Jewish state, or the national home, is not allowed to become a reality, it seems probable that the province of Palestine will either become part of the neighboring Arab state, whose capital is Damascus, or be held in trust by one of the powers, under a mandate from the League of Nations, for the benefit of the dwellers therein, and for those pilgrims of the three great religions who wish to visit its holy places. In either contingency it is probable that some Jews, as well as other Europeans, would find no difficulty in settling in the land; but neither foreign Jew nor foreign Gentile should be given any special privileges; and to entrust the Jews, who have not governed themselves for two thousand years, with any form of government of the country would be extremely unwise. Under a just government the country has fair possibilities for future development, but it will never be an Eldorado. At present it is more important that settlers should be men of technical knowledge than that they should command capital. All exploitation of the native people must be prevented. After some years of good government, it may be that the Arabs will be able to find some of the necessary capital for any big works which may be possible; or the government may wish to keep such works in its own hands. All idea of a vast immigration of European settlers must be given up. But the whole question of European penetration in the East requires careful consideration. The present nationalist anti-European movements in Egypt, Syria, Persia, and, in fact, all through the East, are founded on the Oriental fear that the Western peoples, with their more virile natures and greater energy, are pushing themselves more and more into the East and westernizing those countries -- a process most distasteful to the Oriental, albeit he himself often, to keep his head above water and to compete with the foreign settler in his country, is forced, with curses in his heart, to try to westernize himself. He often makes a sorry mess of the business.

The question of Bolshevism is outside the scope of this article, but it remains to be said that the European Jewish population of Palestine is already tainted with the tenets of that faith. The Jews of Southeastern Europe are, almost to a man, Bolsheviki. Europe and America cannot allow the possibility of a homogeneous Bolshevist state in Palestine, whence the propagandists would be in an excellent position to preach their doctrines throughout Asia, Africa, and the Mediterranean coasts.

Links 17 JAN 09

Time to start banking at the bank:

MS-Yahoo merger back on?

Damn that liberal Economist Magazine!

Friday, January 16, 2009

More Links 16 JAN 09

Links 16 JAN 09


And Lee Enterprises paid *how much* for the P-D? See the preview:

More reasons to love the Izzies:

Where is your Ayn Rand now? HAHAHAHAHA:

Even Brooks gives up on Homo Economicus:

Thursday, January 15, 2009

More Links 15 JAN 09

Links 15 JAN 09,2933,479939,00.html

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Early Links 14 JAN 09

The MSM *finally* notices urban vs rural:,8599,1871104,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner,2933,479770,00.html

We've only been saying this for a decade:

Rescan your TV's Monday in STL:

Channel 4's DTV swaps with Larry Rice's DTV. KMOV gets RF 24, Rice's KNLC will continue DTV on RF 14. KMOV will have another interruption later, to replace it's primary transmit antenna on top of it's tower in Lemay. Us geeks have known about this for years. Now, it's hammering time.

Winter blast:

Suprise! Banks used bailout money to cover their own asses instead of lending it:

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

More Links 13 JAN 09,8599,1871300,00.html?xid=rss-topstories-cnnpartner

Links 13 JAN 09,27574,24904137-5006009,00.html,0,3972860.story

Way cool on how we get bad software:

Monday, January 12, 2009

Links 12 JAN 09

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Links 11 JAN 09

This guy is upbeat:

Reply To All:

A broker lied!(I'm *shocked*):

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Late Links 10 JAN 09

Links 10 JAN 09,8599,1870741,00.html?xid=site-cnn-partner,8599,1870450,00.html,2933,479045,00.html

Mexico's 4T meets ours:

Rubin Resigns From Citibank :

I'm *shocked* at the next three items:

“Working on the White House staff is an honor and will always look good on a résumé,” said John Feehery, a Republican strategist, who said several Bush officials had sought his career advice. “It just doesn’t look that good right now.”

Unemployment Timeline Map

Southern Hospitality

Friday, January 9, 2009

Links 9 JAN 09

Worst since WW 2:

this will make everyone safer:

114:1 to Impeach Blago:

Observations 9 JAN 09

Obviously, we're in 2009 now. Some part of me is still in the Year Of Death.

Today (actually, yesterday) was too busy to do my usual deluge of links. It was capped by a review from my boss (actually written by *his* boss- who wisely was not in the building).

I came home and laid down for a long nap with the dog.

Incidentally both of our Help Desk people were out sick on Thursday. The union rep says that's not a co-incidence, as they report to the same Boss Boss that I do...

If you run something at 100% continuously, it is going to fail. And, if you have no reserves/backup, you're dead meat in the modern workplace.

The holiday season was not what I had expected. Typically, I have time for projects to get done. One of them was cleaning up my email and links saved (only partially done). The rest of the time was spent on other, unexpected things.

Like the Week Of The Cell Phone. I'll save the rant for later.

I had a good New Years party with friends, which was the best of the holiday.

Deathbug struck again during the holidays, and Monday of this week. They put me on a BRAT diet- Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. I feel like the latter.

2008 was over with in November. The cold weather, and the colder economy finished the year off with a whimper. It was a good time to leave my politics board, as all that was left was the post-game shouting.

I'm feeling less need to post links for today. Somebody will have reported it.

Nap time again.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Links 8 JAN 09,8599,1870314,00.html?xid=site-cnn-partner,8599,1870066,00.html,8599,1870054,00.html,8599,1870054,00.html

ALERT! Kit Bond Not Running For Senate Again:

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Links 7 JAN 09

Hi, Linus:

Apple's GenCon loses it's Gygax:

Well, I got sicker, too:

For James (not Bond):

See how well privatizing Social Security worked out?


The Brewery Dumps Bevo Mill:

Wait until the Federal Job Report: