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New translation, the Magna Carta

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moral compass

german bishop drunk in charge of machinery

“Over the weekend, the head of the Protestant church in Germany was caught drunk driving. While German commentators condemned Margot Kässmann's actions, most did not feel that she should lose her job. Nevertheless on Wednesday it became clear that the bishop felt her position was untenable.

“The head of the Protestant church in Germany, Bishop Margot Kässmann, has announced her resignation. Her decision to step down came after she was caught driving with three times the legal blood alcohol limit on Saturday night in Hanover.”

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priest sacked for being a heterosexual - archbishop says he’s ill

“The Archbishop of Toledo has now relieved the sinner of his priestly responsibilities, while the bish's representatives asked worshippers to forgive Martin because he was evidently "ill"

“Posing as "Hector" (see pic), he punted himself in a net ad which read: "Heterosexual man for women and couples. Real photos. Well hung (15cm) to give you pleasure and happiness." ”

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mp resigns over false claim for £25 - when will the clown resign over £12,000+ false claims?

“Phil Heatley, a politician in New Zealand immediately tendered his resignation to the Prime Minister when it appeared that a $70 receipt for two bottles of wine at a party conference had been accidentally claimed on his expenses. Heatley told the press “I believe I’ve failed to live up my own standard and for that I’m embarrassed and immensely sorry.” He immediately repaid the money.

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ideal parenthood - the world is changing, adjust

Pitt is 46, Jolie is 34.
Moving on - will they, won’t they?
Shades of Burton and Taylor.

“For most of her life, Jolie has suffered from emotional instability. She has said she contemplated suicide several times as a child, and later when she lived in New York she planned to end her life with a knife or pills but couldn't go through with it.”

“ Then it begins, as it has so many times. The screaming and swearing. The wild accusations of affairs on both sides - Jolie with a young actress, Pitt with an African model.

“It is the latest in a series of rows sometimes so loud and abusive that the staff have felt obliged to remove the children from the house.” [Quoted from dailymail.co.uk]


six children so far, and counting

“Maddox and Zahara were adopted by Brad Pitt, the biological father of Jolie's daughter, Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt.

“Shiloh Nouvel was born in Namibia on May 27, 2006, by cesarean due to a breech presentation. Pitt was there to cut the baby's umbilical cord.

“Pax Thien, was adopted at age 3 1/2 from Vietnam in March 15, 2007. There was some controversy as many complained that the adoption was "fast-tracked" and went against Vietnam law as unmarried couples are not allowed to adopt. Which is why Jolie initially filed alone. Brad Pitt did adopt Pax once they arrived home.

“2008 brought the birth of twins to Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt! Jolie gave birth to a boy and a girl on July 12 in Nice, France. Knox Léon Jolie-Pitt weighed 5lbs 3 oz. and Vivienne Marcheline Jolie-Pitt weighed 5 lbs.” [Quoted from adoption.about.com]

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britain’s no. 1 jew also now attacking socialist ‘new’ labour on civil rights

The first article is recommended reading.

“There are times when human rights become human wrongs. This happens when rights become more than a defence of human dignity, which is their proper sphere, and become instead a political ideology, relentlessly trampling down everything in their path. This is happening increasingly in Britain, and it is why the Pope’s protest against the Equality Bill, whether we agree with it or not, should be taken seriously.”

“ Alexis de Tocqueville, a Frenchman impressed by American democracy, said that in America (and England), religion and liberty are friends; in France they were enemies. He was writing in 1832, but what he said still holds true today. Religion in Britain is part of the ecology of freedom because it supports families, communities, charities, voluntary associations, active citizenship and concern for the common good.” [Quoted from timesonline.co.uk]

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Benedict [Pope] has also complained about the socialist ‘new’ Labour attacks on civil liberties.

“...the Pope has allied himself to an attack already well advanced by Church of England bishops. He framed his denunciation in terms of religious freedom, which nowadays seems to take second place to other sorts of freedom. The Equality Bill, he suggested, would "impose unjust limitations on the freedom of religious communities to act in accordance with their beliefs". That is a very serious charge to be levelled against the Government by the leader of some one billion Catholics, five million of them in the UK.” [Quoted from telegraph.co.uk]

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Rome has been railing against the curse of Marxism from the very early times:

“8 December 1849: On the Church in the pontifical states / nostis et nobiscum: Pope Pius IX
Written the year following the publication of the Communist Manifesto

“18. As regards this teaching and these theories, it is now generally known that the special goal of their proponents is to introduce to the people the pernicious fictions of Socialism and Communism by misapplying the terms "liberty" and "equality." The final goal shared by these teachings, whether of Communism or Socialism, even if approached differently, is to excite by continuous disturbances workers and others, especially those of the lower class, whom they have deceived by their lies and deluded by the promise of a happier condition. They are preparing them for plundering, stealing, and usurping first the Church's and then everyone's property. After this they will profane all law, human and divine, to destroy divine worship and to subvert the entire ordering of civil societies.” [Quoted from papal encyclicals and marx - some extracts: on socialism and liberalism]

More at the link.

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best quality of life listing

Out of a 94-country list, the first ten are

  1. France
  2. Australia
  3. Switzerland
  4. Germany
  5. New Zealand
  6. Luxembourg
  7. United States of America
  8. Belgium
  9. Canada
  10. Italy

The United Kingdom is no. 25. Note that other European Union member countries are ahead of the UK.

Tabulated listing of results.

related material
GDP and other quality of life measurements

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it’s not my fault, says brown the clown
the parable of feckless britain:

Come close and listen, Best Beloved.

In our house, we have a 600-inch TV. We have a Roller in the drive. I now have my sixth house valued at £7 million. We have separate nannies for our 4 children.

Unfortunately, the bailiffs are due in tomorrow and the company is bankrupt. And I’m going through little difficulties with the tax man and some mean bastards at the Old Bailey.

I’ve just found out Granny has a hospital-acquired disease, the wife has cancer and I can’t get the specialists. Oh, and none of our teenage children can read.

My daddy left me a farm, and I lived boozing and partying there for years, on borrowed money and by selling of sections of the farm. Now I’m on the dole.

My next door neighbour is an uptight Scrooge. I keep trying to borrow money from him. I’ve even sent in one or two of my mates to rob him. But, lacking sportsmanship, he has a bl**dy great strong room, and has shifted most of his wealth off-shore.

I’ve been super-generous. I’ve given some gold bars I stole to my aunts and uncles and nephews and nieces and brothers (I don’t have any sisters) and to thousands of friends. But none of them are now returning my calls, the liars keep telling people they didn’t know the gold bars were stolen! Or they even say that they don’t know me - would you believe it - some people are so-o-o-o dishonest and ungrateful!

But I believe I have done a marvelous job for my family. Every one of them has an iPhone and highly overpriced trainers and membership of god knows how many clubs.

Shame I’ll be indisposed for a while, but I do have a Swiss account none of them have found yet.

I’m trying to blame it all on my accountant, because I told him to fix up the books for me and now he’s gone and got caught. But he’s turning Queen’s evidence and saying I told him to spend as much as he liked and I’d take responsibility.

So, here I am. I’ve tried to blame it on the neighbours. I’ve tried to blame it on my predecessor. I’m trying to blame it on my successors. I’m trying to blame it on the capitalists. Why, I’ve even said that it’s America’s fault, which everyone tries to blame. But despite my courage and my moral compass, even my lawyers are laughing.

It’s all so very unfair.

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the russian creative period - the auroran sunset

While rereading Chekhov’s plays, I noticed something pretty freaky:

  • Alexander Pushkin (1799-1837)
  • Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821-1881)
  • Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910)
  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)
  • Anton Chekhov (1860-1904)
  • Constantin Stanislavski (1863-1938)
  • Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943)
  • Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929)
  • Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971)
  • Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953)
  • Eduard Nápravník (1839-1916)
  • Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908)
  • Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881)
  • Alexander Dargomyzhsky (1813-1869)
  • Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852)
  • Peter Carl Fabergé (1846-1920)
  • Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)
  • Mikhaïl Boulgakov (1891 - 1940)
  • Anna Akhmatova (1889 - 1960)
  • Alexander Blok (1880 - 1920)
  • Boris Pasternak (1890 - 1960)
  • Kazimir Malevich (1879 - 1935)
  • Wassily Kandinsky (1866 - 1944)
  • Marc Chagall (1887 – 1985)
  • Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (1870-1924)
  • Joseph Stalin (1878-1953)

It’s like the place didn’t exist before Pushkin! It seems as if 99% of Russian culture happened in one approximately 50-year period, and is probably all attributable to one man: Pushkin.

For obvious reasons, there has been roughly no Russian culture since the early 1900s; while until the close of the 18th century; the official language in Russia remained a kind of Church Slavonic.

Reading up on Pushkin, it seems Russia had their Shakespeare (someone to free and reinvent half the language) a few centuries late, then Stalin and his wreckers destroyed the culture in its infancy.

related material
socialist religions

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evolution and plasticity

A major error of the social sciences is to concentrate on what does not work, and try to stop the problems, rather than to concentrate on what does work - and teach it.

“This orchid hypothesis also answers a fundamental evolutionary question that the vulnerability hypothesis cannot. If variants of certain genes create mainly dysfunction and trouble, how have they survived natural selection?...”

“In this view, having both dandelion and orchid kids greatly raises a family’s (and a species’) chance of succeeding, over time and in any given environment. The behavioral diversity provided by these two different types of temperament also supplies precisely what a smart, strong species needs if it is to spread across and dominate a changing world. The many dandelions in a population provide an underlying stability. The less-numerous orchids, meanwhile, may falter in some environments but can excel in those that suit them. And even when they lead troubled early lives, some of the resulting heightened responses to adversity that can be problematic in everyday life—increased novelty-seeking, restlessness of attention, elevated risk-taking, or aggression—can prove advantageous in certain challenging situations: wars, tribal or modern; social strife of many kinds; and migrations to new environments. Together, the steady dandelions and the mercurial orchids offer an adaptive flexibility that neither can provide alone. Together, they open a path to otherwise unreachable individual and collective achievements.” [Quoted from theatlantic.com, p.1/3]

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“A maturing female will stay with this group all her life. A male, however, will leave—often under pressure from the females as he gets rowdier and rougher—when he’s 4 or 5, or roughly the equivalent of a 16-to-20-year-old person. At first he’ll join an all-male gang that lives more or less separately. After a few months to a year, he’ll leave the gang and try to charm, push, or sidle his way into a new family or troop....”

“The other type, generally male, is what Suomi calls a “bully”: an unusually and indiscriminately aggressive monkey. These monkeys accounted for 5 to 10 percent of each generation. “Rhesus monkeys are fairly aggressive in general, even when young,” Suomi says, “and their play involves a lot of rough-and-tumble. But usually no one gets hurt—except with these guys. They do stupid things most other monkeys know not to. They repeatedly confront dominant monkeys. They get between moms and their kids. They don’t know how to calibrate their aggression, and they don’t know how to read signs they should back off. Their conflicts tend to always escalate.” These bullies also score poorly in tests of monkey self-control. For instance, in a “cocktail hour” test that Suomi sometimes uses, monkeys get unrestricted access to a neutral-tasting alcoholic drink for an hour. Most monkeys have three or four drinks and then stop. The bullies, Suomi says, “drink until they drop.” ” [Quoted from theatlantic.com, p.2/3]

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Revolution and war [p.3/3].

related material
feedback and crowding

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socialism generates failure - new report on child management

“According to the report, qualities such as application, self-regulation and empathy were more likely to be developed in children whose parents employed a "tough love" approach.

“It found that these qualities made "a vital contribution to life chances, mobility and opportunity".

“The report said these characteristics were profoundly shaped in pre-school years.” [Quoted from bbc.co.uk]

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The report from Demos is now published - online as 104-page .pdf, or as a 10 print version:

“As social mobility has stalled during this same period, opportunities to develop strong character are becoming more and more the privilege of already advantaged children. Through an exploration of developmental psychology, parenting technique, and social change, Demos seeks to understand when and how good character develops and what the implications are for parents, communities, and public policy.

“Psychology shows that the early years and antenatal period are the most important times for child development – the scaffolding for key life skills and character traits is built from birth: when babies learn that crying brings (or will not bring) parental intervention, parents set the groundwork for the development of agency. Throughout childhood and adolescence, children internalise notions of social and behavioural norms from observing and interacting with their parents and adults close to them.”

And this recent book looks interesting: Nurtureshock by Bronson and Merryman. It’s a summary of recent research results.

Delenda est socialismus.

Nurture shock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman

Nurtureshock: New Thinking About Children
by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman

$16.49 [amazon.com]
amazon.co.uk

Twelve, 03/09/2009
ISBN-10: 0446504122
ISBN-13: 978-0446504126

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