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A perfect storm of events is eroding the perception of American deterrence—and the world will shortly become an even scarier place. The fiscal crisis has cast doubt on the government’s ability to act forcefully, especially the president’s emasculation during the entire process. These perceptions, of course, pale in consideration to the reality of out of control spending the first three years of the Obama administration that added almost $5 trillion to the U.S. debt and is both humiliating America and questioning whether it can still pay for its enormous military. Almost every day, we are borrowing $4 billion, enough to build a new fleet aircraft carrier and, of course, are not building aircraft carriers with such daily deficits as we did in World War II.

via Works and Days » Unchained World.

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July 30, 2011 Posted by | buisness, deficit, government | , , | Leave a comment

US contractor convicted in Cuba; 15-year

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A Cuban court on Saturday found U.S. contractor Alan Gross guilty of crimes against the state and sentenced him to 15 years in prison, a verdict that brought a swift and strongly worded condemnation from Washington.

The court said prosecutors had proved that Gross, 61, was working on a “subversive” program paid for by the United States that aimed to bring down Cuba’s revolutionary system. Prosecutors had sought a 20-year jail term.

Gloria Berbena, a spokeswoman for the U.S. diplomatic mission on the island, termed the decision “appalling” and called on Cuba to release Gross immediately.

“We reject and deplore this ruling,” she told The Associated Press. “It is appalling that the Cuban government seeks to criminalize what most of the world deems normal, in this case access to information and technology.”

Tommy Vietor, a spokesman for the White House’s National Security Council, said the ruling “adds another injustice to Alan Gross’ ordeal.”

“He has already spent too many days in detention and should not spend one more,” he said. “We urge the immediate release of Mr. Gross so that he can return home to his wife and family.”



March 15, 2011 Posted by | global | , , , , | Leave a comment

Thomas Jefferson – Top 10 American Political Prodigies – TIME

In 1781, Thomas Jefferson, having served as governor of Virginia, declared he’d had enough of politics. And he wasn’t even 40.

In the next two decades, Jefferson would take on many public roles — U.S. minister to France, the nation’s first Secretary of State, vice-president under John Adams, and, of course, the third President of the United States of America — but by 1781 he’d already earned a place in the history books. A delegate to the Second Continental Congress, he was just 33 in 1776, when he drafted the remarkable Declaration of Independence. Two years before holding those truths to be self-evident, he penned A Summary View of the Rights of British America while serving in Virginia’s House of Burgesses.

Read “The Philosopher-President: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Thomas Jefferson.”

View the full list for “Top 10 American Political Prodigies”

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November 10, 2010 Posted by | culture, government, history, Philosophy, politics, social | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

In Canton, Kindness of a Stranger Still Resonates –

Great Depression: man dressed in worn coat lyi...

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In Canton, Kindness of a Stranger Still Resonates –

Kirk Irwin for The New York Times

Ted Gup, Mr. Stone’s grandson, spoke Friday with Helen Palm at a program in Canton, Ohio, for those who received gifts from B. Virdot and their families.

Published: November 7, 2010

CANTON, Ohio — The event was a reunion for people who were never supposed to meet, commemorating an act of charity that succeeded because it happened in secret.

Related in Opinion
Ted Gup: Hard Times, a Helping Hand

A battered old black suitcase holds a family secret — records of anonymous philanthropy during the Great Depression.

Kirk Irwin for The New York Times

The letters, checks and checkbooks that author Ted Gup was given and used to write his book, “A Secret Gift.”

Samuel Stone

Kirk Irwin for The New York Times

Canton is having tough times once again.

Helen Palm sat in her wheelchair on the stage of the Palace Theater and read her plea for help, the one she wrote in the depths of the Great Depression to an anonymous stranger who called himself B. Virdot.

“I am writing this because I need clothing,” Ms. Palm, 90, read aloud on Friday evening. “And sometimes we run out of food.”

Ms. Palm was one of hundreds who responded to an advertisement that appeared Dec. 17, 1933, in The Canton Repository newspaper. A donor using the pseudonym B. Virdot offered modest cash gifts to families in need. His only request: Letters from the struggling people describing their financial troubles and how they hoped to spend the money. The donor promised to keep letter writers’ identities secret “until the very end.”

That end came last week at the city’s famed 84-year-old Palace Theater, at a reunion for families of B. Virdot’s recipients. About 400 people attended. For the older people, it was a chance to remember the hard times. For relatives of the letter writers, it was a time to hear how the small gifts, in the bleakest winter of the Depression, meant more than money. They buoyed the spirits of an entire city that was beginning to lose hope.

November 8, 2010 Posted by | culture, death, depression era, history, social | , , , | Leave a comment

Top US ballet troupe returns to Cuba | Stage |

Gran Teatro de la Habana (Teatro Garcia Lorca)

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Top US ballet troupe returns to Cuba | Stage |

ABT in Cuba: Dancers of the American Ballet Theatre perform in Havana, Cuba
The New York-based American Ballet Theatre (ABT) perform Theme and Variations, choreographed by George Balanchine, at the Karl Marx theatre in Havana



November 4, 2010 Posted by | art, culture, entertainment, global, history, media, social | , , , | Leave a comment

Songs We Love: The Best Of Soul Train : NPR

Rainy Davis - Soul Train / Don Cornelius

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Songs We Love: The Best Of Soul Train : NPR. videos: Barry White “Can’t Get Enough of Your Love Baby”

It would be easy to tell the story of Soul Trainwith facts and figures. It ran for 35 seasons, making it the longest continuously airing first-run syndicated television program. It’s been referenced in many song lyrics, films and TV shows. Countless R&B and soul acts performed on the show and credited Soul Train as a crucial element of their success.

But the show’s impact on America’s collective cultural identity is best described by the people who watched it and let it shape their musical sensibilities. While the show’s audience was always primarily African-AmericanSoul Train was also a cross-cultural hit. Seems we all wanted to check out the latest moves and fashions from that in-studio dance floor.

November 3, 2010 Posted by | culture, entertainment, global, history, media, music, social | , , , , , | 1 Comment

10 Ancient Cave Dwellings You Can Visit (PHOTOS)

This 20-room apartment sits inside a limestone cliff.

November 2, 2010 Posted by | environmental, history | , , | Leave a comment

The Ten Biggest American Cities That Are Running Out Of Water

Atlanta, GA,Tucson, AZ,Orlando, FL,Las Vegas, NV,Fort Worth, TX,Fort Worth, TX,San Antonio, Texas,Phoenix, AZ,Houston, TX and Los Angeles, CA.

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The Ten Biggest American Cities That Are Running Out Of Water

The water problem is worse than most people realize, particularly in several large cities which are occasionally low on water now and almost certainly face  shortfalls  in a few years. This is particularly true if the change in global weather patterns substantially alters rainfall amounts in some areas of the US.

24/7 Wall St. looked at an October, 2010 report on water risk by environmental research and sustainability group, Ceres. We also considered a comprehensive July, 2010 report from the National Resources Defense Council which mapped areas at high risk of water shortage conflict. 24/7 Wall St also did its own analysis of water supply and consumption in America’s largest cities, and focused on the thirty largest metropolitan areas. One goal was to identify potential conflicts in  regions which might have disputed rights over large supplies of water and the battles that could arise from these disputes.  And, 24/7 Wall St. examined geographic areas which have already been plagued by drought and water shortages off and on.

The analysis allowed us to choose ten cities which are likely to face severe shortages in the relatively near-term future. Some of these are likely to be obvious to the reader. The area around Los Angeles was once too dry to sustain the population of a huge city. But, infrastructure was built that allowed water to be pumped in from east of the region. Las Vegas had similar problems. It was part of a great desert until Lake Meade was created by the Hoover dam built on the Colorado river.



October 31, 2010 Posted by | global | , , , , | Leave a comment

Woolworths: a store of memories | Business |


Anzeige Woolworth 1927-7-28

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It is 99 years since Frank Winfield Woolworth launched his chain of department stories in the UK
People stand outside the original Woolworth’s store, founded in 1879, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania

October 9, 2010 Posted by | culture, history, social | , , , | 2 Comments

Two worn Civil War flags set to be saved Sunday, October 3, 2010 03:00 AM BY ALAN JOHNSON For The Columbus Dispatch

Photograph showing a portion of the 127th Regi...

Image via Wikipedia     Two-worn-civil-war-flags-set-to-be-saved.html?sid=101Two more flags that flew as Ohioans fought and died during the Civil War are being repaired and restored to their former glory thanks to private donations.

Although flags from the 5th U.S. Colored Infantry and the 4th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry will be saved, hundreds of others are falling to pieces at the Ohio Historical Society because of lack of funds to preserve them. Nearly 150 years later, the smell of gunpowder still clings to some.

The small “flank” flag from the 5th U.S. Colored Infantry, the first black troops to be organized in Ohio, and the regimental colors of the 4th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, a unit from Cincinnati that participated in many major battles, were carefully packed away Monday at a Historical Society warehouse.

They will make a short trip to Textile Preservation Associates of Ransom, W.Va. There they will undergo a delicate restoration process: They will be bathed in distilled water, dried and encapsulated between layers of a see-through fabric. The edges will be carefully sewn closed, and the flags then will be ready for mounting and display.

Cliff Eckle, a curator at the Ohio Historical Society, prepares two Civil War flags to be restored as a result of donated funds. The top flag is an 1863 flank marker for the 5th U.S. Colored Infantry; the other is the regimental colors of the 4th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry.

October 6, 2010 Posted by | freedom, government, history, politics, war | , , , | Leave a comment