Remembering the ‘lost ones’ this Christmas

Cal Thomas has a moving article about a missionary couple who are trying to help the prostitutes of Bangkok break out of what is all too often their literal enslavement.  Here’s an excerpt. Prostitution has been illegal in Thailand since 1960, but the Thailand Government Public Health Department estimates there are 75,000 prostitutes in the country. Some nongovernment organizations put the figure much higher. “Sexual tourists” come here, their visits set up by travel agents, as if they were booking people for a cruise or a trip to the beach. The newspapers constantly rail against corrupt officials who tolerate the

Continue reading

An excellent perspective on school security

I’m not exactly a cheerleader for the news media’s accuracy, impartiality and objectivity, but I have to make an exception for this ABC News Nightline segment on school security.  It’s very ‘fair and balanced’ – in fact, Fox News, which (in)famously uses that slogan, could learn some lessons from this report.  It’s not long, and well worth watching. Full marks to Nightline for some very good reporting.  I wish the same objectivity and fairness had been displayed by the rest of the news media over the Connecticut school shootings . . . Peter

Continue reading

Doofus Of The Day #669

Today’s winner comes from Australia.  A tip o’ the hat to reader Snoggeramus for sending me the link. An employee on his first day of work inadvertently contributed to a superior having his fingers chopped off. . . . The supervisor, who had almost 20 years’ experience in the workplace, was a safety and health representative and regularly trained new employees. Despite the supervisor’s awareness of instructions for the use of the machine, he raised the machine’s finger guards and reached in with bare hands to dislodge a piece of metal that had become wedged. As a result of a

Continue reading

A noteworthy retirement

It seems amazing to find a modern First World air force still flying a biplane . . . but until December 14th, the Polish Air Force was still operating the Antonov An-2 utility aircraft.  It had done so since 1951. The Antonovs were finally retired at a ceremony attended by the commanding officer of Poland’s Air Force, Lieutenant-General Lech Majewski. However, the An-2 soldiers on elsewhere.  The Russian, Chinese and North Korean air forces still operate it, and there may be others.  Despite the fact that we live in an age of supersonic stealthy jets,  the military utility of fabric-covered

Continue reading

Washington is fiddling while America burns

Clearly, President Obama, Congress and the Senate have been imbibing far too much of the post-election spirit(s) . . . either that, or they’ve been taking lessons from the late, unlamented Emperor Nero.  They’re squabbling and pointing fingers over the ‘fiscal cliff’, sequestration, taxes, and blame – but not one of them are saying a single word about the true magnitude of the problem, or telling Americans how perilously close we are to economic collapse. The facts are stark, inescapable, and speak for themselves.  We’ve looked at them several times before in these pages.  For tonight’s discussion, I’ll limit myself

Continue reading

More high-speed motorcycle action

I hope you’re not getting bored with the series of videos I’ve been putting up about the Isle of Man TT race this year, but I find them fascinating.  Here’s another I just found dealing with this year’s race.  It gives me cold shivers to watch the chances these idiots racers take! Peter

Continue reading

Guess where the cocktail came from?

I’d always believed the cocktail to be a uniquely American invention, dating back a couple of centuries.  However, according to the Telegraph, that’s not the case. Until recently, the earliest-known use of the word “cocktail” in print that referenced drink was from 1806 in an upstate New York newspaper. Then, in 2005, it was discovered in a Vermont newspaper from 1803. In 2010 we found the word used in the March 20, 1798, edition of The Morning Post and Gazetteer, a long-defunct London newspaper. The paper had reported on March 16 that the landlord of the Axe & Gate tavern

Continue reading

Electoral College shenanigans – again

For the benefit of non-US readers who may not understand the electoral rigmarole here, the President is elected not by direct vote, but by the members of an Electoral College.  Each state of the Union has as many members of the Electoral College as it has congressional districts, plus two for its Senators (of which each state has two).  In most states, the votes of all its Electoral College delegates are awarded to the Presidential candidate who wins the majority of votes in that state. The Electoral College system has been widely criticized.  As Wikipedia notes: Critics argue that the

Continue reading

More rally carnage

Continuing our occasional look at the thrills and spills of rallying, here’s a collection of crashes from earlier this year. That brings back lots of memories . . . as well as a reminder of why I don’t do rallying any more, even as an amateur! Peter

Continue reading