Monday, March 30, 2015

BBC Dropping Jeremy Clarkson Leads to Death Threats

Tony Hall

(UK) Following up on the controversy regarding The BBC's most popular program:
BBC director general Tony Hall has allegedly received death threats after the network announced it is parting ways with Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson.

CNN reports that police were informed Wednesday of the alleged threats to Hall's life. The threats came via email.

"Police in Westminster are investigating an allegation of threats to kill," Metropolitan Police told CNN. "The content of the message suggests [it was sent] from outside the U.K."
A major controversy, no doubt.

Arkansas Women Accused of Prostituting Girl, 14

Jessyca Hoskins

(Fayetteville, Arkansas) A 26-year-old local woman, Jessyca Hoskins, has been accused of introducing a 14-year-old to prostitution and filming a sexual encounter.

Hoskins faces counts of possessing and distributing child pornography and involvement in the sexual exploitation of a child.
Police were called to the Washington County Regional Medical Center on March 23 after a 14-year-old girl reported she had been raped.

She said that she had told her mother she was going to friend's house for the weekend, but went instead to Hoskins' apartment in the same complex. There, she had sex with multiple men, and Hoskins allowed her to use alcohol and marijuana. Hoskins also introduced her to a pimp who goes by the name "Allstar."

Police later located a witness who had a cell phone video of the girl and a man having sex.
After arrest, Hoskins was booked into the Washington County Detention Center.

Harmless pesticide still used in Australia -- ozone "hole"  regardless

In their role as sand in the gears of civilization, Greenies constantly find reasons to ban useful chemicals,  making pest and weed control difficult and raising costs.  We need therefore to look at where a ban is really needed.  In this case the reason for the ban is a laugh.  Methyl bromide was banned because it allegedly harmed the ozone layer.

But even though the ozone layer "protections" were put in place long ago, the "hole" in the ozone layer waxes and wanes as it always did.  The "protections" have protected nothing. The ozone "hole" is now properly regarded as just another failed Greenie scare.  Although  official meteorological records of the "hole" are no doubt still available, nobody I know even bothers to track it anymore.

So the ban on Methyl bromide should in fact now be lifted completely -- giving farmers and others a colorless, odorless, nonflammable fumigant to use, where appropriate

About 70 per cent of Australian strawberries are being grown on runners that have been fumigated with an environmentally damaging pesticide that has been banned around the world.

Methyl bromide is an odourless and colourless gas which was banned under the United Nations Montreal Protocol in 1989 because it depletes the ozone layer.

Australia agreed to phase it out by 2005 but a decade later, nine strawberry runner growers at Toolangi, in Victoria's Yarra Valley, are still using nearly 30 tonnes a year.

They produce 100 million strawberry runners annually, which in turn generate about 70 per cent of Australian strawberries.

Each year they apply to the UN for a critical use exemption from the ban, claiming the alternatives are financially crippling.

The co-chair of the UN Methyl Bromide Technical Options committee, Dr Ian Porter, said the situation was frustrating.

"Internationally, we've gotten rid of 85 per cent of methyl bromide, and it's a great win for mankind — in fact it's the best environmental gain that's been made," he said.

"[The strawberry runner growers] want to get rid of it, but there's a responsibility to provide high-health runners for the industry.

"It's frustrating ... but we don't want industries to fall over economically or technically. We don't want more disease or pests in Australia."

Environmental Justice Australia said it was concerned the growers were using a loophole to continue their use of methyl bromide.

"I think if people did know more about this issue, they'd be very concerned that the strawberries they're consuming are contributing to this significant environmental issue," chief executive Brendan Sydes said.

"There was a commitment to phase out this chemical by 2005 and yet, despite that, we're continuing to use it in this industry. It's a real concern.

"I think it's a real failure of the industry to come up with some alternative methods of producing strawberry runners, but also of the government to insist on compliance with this important regulatory regime."

Prices would increase to $10 a punnet: industry

The strawberry growers said if they were forced to stop using methyl bromide, the viability of the $400 million strawberry industry would be "compromised" and 15,000 jobs jeopardised.

The industry estimated their costs could soar by 500 per cent if they were to switch to soilless growing systems, similar to those used in parts of Europe.

The runner industry has invested more than $700,000 on research and development to find alternatives to methyl bromide.

That cost would be passed on to consumers, and a punnet of strawberries could end up costing more than $10.

"You imagine turning 100 hectares immediately into glass houses, and the impact that would have," Dr Porter said.

"It's just not the least bit economical at this stage.

"It's tough to weigh up economics, it's one of our challenges. Will consumers pay $10 a punnet? I don't know."


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Spring Break Shootings

David Jamichael Daniels

(Panama City Beach, Florida)
Seven people were wounded, several critically, in a shooting at a Spring Break house party early Saturday.

David Jamichael Daniels, 22, of Mobile, Ala., has been charged with seven counts of attempted murder and was in the Bay County Jail awaiting first appearance.
So far, police don't have a motive for the shootings.

Are people who distrust troublesome minorities wrong in the head?

I would have thought it obvious that people who TRUST troublesome minorities are wrong in the head -- but I am just  a cautious old conservative so I guess my views don't count in the fairytale world of Left-dominated academe.

The New York Times does push the view that  people who distrust troublesome minorities are wrong in the head.  But they do so amid such a flood of words that is difficult to pin down any clear claims.  I am referring to the article "The Brain’s Empathy Gap" of March 19, 2015.  It was so difficult to pin down any clear assertions in it that I initially gave up any attempt to write some sort of critique of it.  Answering it seemed like doing battle with a giant marshmallow.  So, initially, I simply referred readers to what the excellent Steve Sailer had to say about it.  I do think however that I have a few things to add to Steve's comments so I am going to tackle the challenge after all.

The article moves from stories about gypsies in Romania to a disquisition on brain scanning and then back to stories about gypsies in Romania. Romania is a poor country and Romanian gypsies are apparently the poorest of the poor.  And it's all caused by "discrimination", of course.  The jump between brain scans and  Romanian gypsies is rather startling -- but whatever floats your boat, I guess.

What the brain scans showed were some clear patterns but the article itself admits that interpreting such patterns is still speculative.  Here is a typical sentence from the article:

"And in both groups, a small region of the brain, the medial precuneus, which may be associated with the theory-of-mind network, responded more strongly"

And it also may be associated with airborne pork, I guess.  I have been writing about such scans for some time and, at least among Leftist writers, they seem to be little more that a Rorschach Ink Blot test:  What you see in the thing before you tells us more about you than it tells about the display before you.  The NYT writer, Jeneen Interlandi, who is said to be a frequent contributor to the NYT magazine, soldiers on anyhow and proceeds to interpret the brain scans. She relies on some work by Emile Bruneau  of MIT.  It was he who found the enigmatic patterns in brain scans.

It was however an anomaly in the brain scans that caused the excitement. Three Israeli peace activists showed scans similar to Arabs.  I can't imagine any Israeli being surprised by that but surprise it apparently did.  The article goes on quite rightly to concede that the non-random and tiny sample precludes any generalizations from the findings but then goes on to make some mushy generalizations anyhow

When we get back to the gypsies  there is a reasonably fair account of how the gypsies are in part the authors of their own problems.  Their high level of petty crime and their unsavoury lifestyle are repellent to other Romanians.  And the article admits that government programs designed to uplift the Gypsies have failed.  We also read however that "racial prejudice was thwarting efforts to assimilate the Roma" -- where "Roma" is the politically correct word for Gypsy.

And, despite all its admissions, the article ends with a claim that by studying people's brain scans we might somehow be able to see where all that nasty prejudice is coming from and stop it -- presumanbly by sending the people with "bad" brain scans to Siberia or some such.  That the main problem with gypsies is their known very low IQ is not of course mentioned.  Leftists often give me cause to point out pachyderms in rooms.

And a final point I would like to make is that in elite thinking both inside and outside traditional gypsy lands, gypsies have long been appreciated. Despite their general intellectual limitations, many gypsies are brilliant musicians and their music is a substantial source of income for them.  It is undoubtedly a rather eerie talent.  There have been accounts of gypsies graduating from high-level music schools without being able to read a note of staff notation.  They just memorize everything.

And in classical music circles, there have been many expressions of admiration for gypsies by reason of their musical talent.  In the most famous opera of all time -- "Carmen" -- the leading lady is a gypsy, and she is certainly portrayed with overall admiration.  And the gypsy lifestyle is also portrayed as admirable.  And another well-known opera is "La Boheme", where "Boheme" is a French term for a gypsy. And the "Bohemian" lady is treated sympathetically there too.  And in Lehar's operetta Zigeunerliebe, the gypsy lifestyle is again admired. And Kalman's operetta Graefin Maritza is one extended hymn of praise for gypsy music. And Kalman was a Hungarian -- and Hungary has a substantial population of Gypsies -- so it is unlikely that he had any illusions about them.

You can see the Moerbisch performance of Graefin Maritza online here. It's infinitely more entertaining than the NYT and the expressive Dagmar Schellenberger in the title role is a pleasure to watch and hear.  She is both a most accomplished soprano and a superb actress.

So I would argue that in elite European opinion at least there has been much favourable disposition towards gypsies.  That gypsies have been unable to parlay the favourable disposition towards them into any general uplift at all suggests that their own limitations are the problem  -- rather than something bad in the heads of others.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Pennsylvania Teacher Accused of Child Luring

Geraldine Alcorn

(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) A 28-year-old teacher at Beechwood Elementary School, Geraldine Alcorn, has been accused of child luring, corruption of minors and attempting to interfere with custody of the child upon being obsessed with one of her 11-year-old female students.

Reportedly, "… the 11-year-old student’s mother said 2,400 text messages were exchanged between her child and the Beechwood Elementary School teacher over a two-week span."
According to police, the texts expressed “deep love” between Alcorn and the student. The pair talked about Alcorn adopting the 11-year-old, texting that they would be “on the run” for a while.

Police said after the girl's mother discovered the messages on her iPod, she found handwritten letters in her daughter's school binder labeled "Things Ms. Alcorn and I can do," "What we can do" and "When we can do it."
Alcorn was booked and released on $100,000 bond.

Christian identification with Israel

I went to a hymn-singing service at Wynnum Presbyterian church today.  I am deeply moved by music and hymns are meant to be moving so I love to hear and sing the great old Protestant hymns.

A famous hymn that I enjoyed was "Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah", sung to the marvellous "Cwm Rhondda" tune.  It's been sung on many great occasions in England. Here it is being sung on a very great British occasion indeed. The last verse of it is below.  At the link you can hear that verse sung by everybody who is anybody in Britain:

When I tread the verge of Jordan,
Bid my anxious fears subside;
Death of death and hell’s Destruction,
Land me safe on Canaan’s side.
Songs of praises, songs of praises,
I will ever give to Thee;
I will ever give to Thee.

So the identification with the Children of Israel is deep into Christian culture.  God's gift of the land of Irael to the Jews is equated with salvation.  For Christians not to love Israel makes them very dubious Christians indeed

Secular people sometimes say that the Jews of today are totally different from the people who came up out of Egypt -- but to say that is to disbelieve all the promises that the Lord made to the Children of Israel.  Only pseudo-Christians or unbelievers could say that.  There are however a lot of pseuds around.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Carolina Teacher Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Meghan Colleen Dougherty

(Simpsonville, South Carolina) A 36-year-old teacher at Hillcrest Middle School, Meghan Colleen Dougherty, has been accused of engaging in inappropriate relations with a student.

Dougherty has been charged with criminal sexual misconduct with a minor in the 2nd degree.
The arrest resulted from an investigation that revealed Dougherty and a 14 year old female student had engaged in sexual acts as far back as January of this year.

Dougherty was a physical education teacher at Hillcrest Middle School during the time of the alleged crimes, and also coached the girl's soccer and volleyball teams.
Dougherty awaits arraignment.

Convicted Texas Teacher on the Lam - Update

Shannon Rae Spradlin

(Seguin, Texas) Last August, former Seguin High School teacher Shannon Rae Spradlin was convicted of improper relations with a 17-year-old student and sentenced to probation.

Subsequently, Spradlin violated the terms of her release.
A new motion to adjudicate Shannon Rae Spradlin’s guilt filed on Feb. 9 shows the woman ran afoul of the conditions of her probation by living in motels or trailer parks in Live Oak and in Canyon Lake, by failing to remain out of contact with her victim and failing to notify her probation officer within 24 hours of allegedly being caught in a vehicle with her victim by New Braunfels police on Feb. 6.

* * * * *

Texas Teacher Arrested for Misconduct with Male Student
[Previous 3/10/14 post]
(Seguin, Texas) A 31-year-old teacher at Seguin High School, Shannon Rae Spradlin, has been accused of engaging in inappropriate conduct with a student.

Spradlin was arrested for improper relationship between an educator and student. According to Seguin Police Detective Lt. Eric Jiminez:
“Our investigation revealed Spradlin had participated in inappropriate misconduct with a 17-year-old male student at Seguin HS,” he said. “As of now, there is nothing that has led us to believe that any of the inappropriate misconduct occurred on school property.”

Jiminez declined to go into detail about the conduct.[…]

The district received a report about two weeks ago about alleged inappropriate conduct and contacted the Seguin Police Department to investigate the claims, according to a a release from the district.

“Spradlin was immediately placed on administrative leave and subsequently resigned her position,” it said. “District officials worked closely with law enforcement and Child Protective Services throughout the process.”
Spradlin was booked into custody and subsequently released on $50,000 bail.

Missouri Teacher Accused of School Bus Sex

Megan Blair Baker

(Urich, Missouri) A 25-year-old teacher/wrestling coach at Sherwood Cass High School, Megan Blair Baker, has been accused of engaging in sex with a student on a school bus.

The 17-year-old student and wrestler allegedly bragged about his encounters to his teammates on the wrestling team.
Baker, who is also a wrestling coach, was suspended from Sherwood Cass High School and was placed on paid leave pending an investigation into the sex allegations.
Baker was booked into custody and released on $7,500 bond.

Top Gear Cans Jeremy Clarkson

Jeremy Clarkson

Following reports of an "unprovoked physical and verbal attack," BBC has officially dropped Jeremy Clarkson as host of Top Gear. (Technically, BBC simply decided not to renew his contract, which ends this month, but the reasons are clear.)

Top Gear is a global sensation. Though it first aired in 1977, the show as it's known today launched in 2002 after Clarkson and producer Andy Wilman pitched a new format to the BBC. The show now airs in over 200 countries and is one of BBC's most profitable shows, according to Reuters. The BBC itself estimates a worldwide audience of 350 million.
Frankly, I suspect the jettisoning of Clarkson heralds the demise of Top Gear as a highly-rated program.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Toe Sucker Case

Joey Leaphart

(Augusta, Georgia} A 45-year-old local man, Joey Leaphart, has been arrested for "simple battery and robbery by sudden snatching. He was placed in the Richmond County detention center, where he remained Friday afternoon with two additional holds on him."

Leaphart has a history of approaching women and attempting to suck their toes.
Leaphart pleaded guilty in 2000 to an incident in which he sucked and licked the toes of an 11-year-old girl and was in prison from March 2004 to October 2009, according to previous reports.

Before going to prison in 2002, Leaphart was also in court facing charges that he kissed a woman’s foot without her permission while she was in the parking lot of the Aiken County Department of Social Services.
Leaphart seems to have a problem which warrants locking him up.

Important Thinker

Russell Brand

Comedian Russell Brand has been voted the world’s fourth most important thinker by readers of intellectual magazine Prospect.
Brand has been called the spiritual leader of anti-capitalist youth.

The latest IQ study

The latest IQ study (below) has a slightly defensive air.  Despite ferocious efforts by Leftists to suppress findings that pop the bubble of Leftist claims, it seems that the genetic contribution to IQ has now become well-known and generally accepted.  So the effort nowadays seems to have moved towards proving that there are environmental influences too.  Previous IQ researchers have never doubted that and usually estimate that around one third of IQ is determined by environmental factors.

And the conclusions below disturb nothing.  Both genetic and environmental influences on IQ were found.  The main interest of the findings in this study therefore is *how much* influence  environment had.  The researchers report that a wealthy childhood environment gave the kid an extra 4 points of IQ -- about a quarter of a standard deviation -- over a kid brought up in a poor family.

If anything, that figure is perhaps a bit low. But the study is not a strong one anyhow.  It used adopted full-brothers rather than twins so genetic differences could be only roughly controlled for.  And assessing IQ in the late teens is not optimal either.  The influence of genetics is not fully revealed until about age 30  -- after the influence of early environmental factors has largely worn off.

Family environment and the malleability of cognitive ability: A Swedish national home-reared and adopted-away cosibling control study

By Kenneth S. Kendler et al.


Individual differences in cognitive ability result from a complex admixture of genetic and environmental influences. Adopted children are one way to estimate the degree of malleability of cognitive ability in response to environmental change in the context of a scientific design that can control for genetic differences among individuals. Sibling pairs in which one member is adopted away and the other reared by biological parents are a particularly powerful research design. In a large population-based sample of separated siblings from Sweden, we demonstrate that adoption into improved socioeconomic circumstances is associated with a significant advantage in IQ at age 18. We replicate the finding in a parallel sample of half-siblings.


Cognitive ability strongly aggregates in families, and prior twin and adoption studies have suggested that this is the result of both genetic and environmental factors. In this study, we used a powerful design—home-reared and adopted-away cosibling controls—to investigate the role of the rearing environment in cognitive ability. We identified, from a complete national Swedish sample of male–male siblings, 436 full-sibships in which at least one member was reared by one or more biological parents and the other by adoptive parents. IQ was measured at age 18–20 as part of the Swedish military service conscription examination. Parental educational level was rated on a 5-point scale. Controlling for clustering of offspring within biological families, the adopted siblings had an IQ 4.41 (SE = 0.75) points higher than their nonadopted siblings. Each additional unit of rearing parental education was associated with 1.71 (SE = 0.44) units of IQ. We replicated these results in 2,341 male–male half-sibships, in which, controlling for clustering within families, adoption was associated with a gain of IQ of 3.18 (SE = 0.34) points. Each additional unit of rearing parental education was associated with 1.94 (SE = 0.18) IQ units. Using full- and half-sibling sets matched for genetic background, we found replicated evidence that (i) rearing environment affects IQ measured in late adolescence, and (ii) a portion of the IQ of adopted siblings could be explained by the educational level of their adoptive parents.


Interesting that one of the co-authors above is Eric Turkheimer. Turkheimer is much loved on the left for  his demonstration -- using a group of poor 7-year olds -- that genetics is not an important determinant of IQ among poor kids -- where "poor kids" is probably rightly interpreted to mean "blacks".


 What he found was probably little more than a restriction of range effect but he has repeatedly refused to release his raw data so we may never know.  Refusing to release raw data is a breach of all scientific protocols. We see it in Warmist researchers too.  It is pretty close to an admission of fraud.

The reason Leftists hate IQ tests is that they contradict the Leftist "equality" creed.  The application of that creed to blacks is however relatively recent.  Introductory psychology textbooks in the early '60s presented the black IQ findings without hesitation.  I remember it well. It was presented as one of the accepted findings in psychology.  As the great fantasy revolution of the '60s rolled on however, fact came to be replaced by righteous indignation.  The fantasists said that blacks COULD NOT be less intelligent so therefore the tests were bunk.

Equality has always been a silly but seductive dream.  It goes at least as far back as the "Levellers" of Cromwell's time.  And the Cromwellian era was undoubtedly much loved among America's founding fathers.  So Jefferson's "created equal" phrase in the Declaration of Independence is no surprise. But it is a pretty foggy phrase.  Are there many acts of creation or is normal childbirth an act of creation?  Or is it meant that God created Adam in such a way that all his descendants would be equal?  If so "The Fall" has clearly disrupted that intention.

But we should not take that part of the Declaration too seriously, however. The Declaration, like most political documents, was a product of much debate and compromise so Jefferson's ambiguous  phrase was just a device to keep  happy both those with Leveller beliefs and those with more realistic beliefs.

However you look at it, however, equality is a faith-based belief, not a fact.  It has no basis in fact.  Rejection of IQ tests is therefore a faith-based act. And the low average IQ scores of blacks are in fact powerful validation of the tests as measures of intelligence.

From the test results we would hypothesize that blacks would be at the bottom of just about every heap  -- and they are -- in income, education, status, health, lifespan and crime-incidence etc. What we know of black behaviour is powerful PROOF that the tests get it right.  Leftists can only reject the tests by closing their eyes to black behaviour. But they are very good at that

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Arizona Woman Accused of Nasty with Boy

Lindsey Radomski

(Scottsdale, Arizona) A 32-year-old local woman, Lindsey Ann Radomski, has been accused of multiple sex crimes stemming from allegations that she performed oral sex on a 15-year-old boy during a bar mitzvah.
Radomski told authorities she was intoxicated and does not remember the alleged encounter with the boy, said Sgt. Ben Hoster, a department spokesman.[…]

After the other adults had left the party or had gone to sleep, police said, Radomski invited seven boys into a room and let them fondle her breasts.

The other boys then left the room, and investigators said Radomski performed oral sex on a 15-year-old boy.
Radomski was booked into custody with bond set at $10,000.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Ohio Woman Accused of Trading Girl for Drugs

April Corcoran

(Cincinnati, Ohio) A 30-year-old local woman, April Corcoran, has been indicted for trading an 11-year-old girl in exchange for heroin.
Corcoran, 30, of Pleasant Plain, Ohio was indicted on 27 felony counts that included complicity, corrupting another with drugs, endangering children and trafficking in persons.
Corcoran's dealer, Shandell Willingham, 41, has been indicted for performing sex acts with the girl.

Corcoran is in custody with bond set at $50,000. Willingham awaits extradition from Indiana.

Carolina Woman Accused of Abetting Armed Robbery

Savannah Pittman

(Onslow County, North Carolina) Savannah Pittman faces charges for being the getaway driver during a home invasion.
Pittman, 20, of Trenton Street in Richlands, was charged Friday by the Onslow County Sheriff’s Office with aiding an abetting an armed robbery, felony conspiracy and possession of stolen goods.

Pittman is accused of assisting Kelvin Burney, 22, of Pinetown Road in Jacksonville, Delshawn James, 23, of Murrill Hill Road in Jacksonville and Antwon Jones, 26, in a Jan. 29 home invasion, according to warrants.

She was found in possession of goods allegedly seized during the break-in, including three cell phones, two video game consoles, a car key and a semi-automatic pistol worth $2,060, as well as an additional pistol, all according to warrants.
Pittman was booked into custody at the Onslow County Jail with bond set at $100,000.

Georgia Teacher Accused of Student Sex

Kayla Emily Zittrouer

(Effingham County, Georgia)
A special education teacher at Effingham County Middle School was arrested today and accused of having inappropriate sexual contact with a student.

Kayla Emily Zittrouer, 22, of Guyton, provided a 14-year-old student with obscene pictures and had “inappropriate sexual contact” with the student, according to Sgt. Don White with the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office.

The Effingham County school system notified the Sheriff’s Office of the allegations on Thursday. Zittrouer was put on administrative leave on Thursday and resigned on Monday, according to School Superintendent Randy Shearouse.

Zittrouer turned herself in to the Sheriff’s Office and was charged with three counts of computer pornography, cruelty to children first degree, sexual assault by a teacher or other administrator engaged in sexual contact, enticing a child for indecent purposes and child molestation.
Zittrouer currently is in custody at the Effingham County Jail.

Why do Climate Denial and Racism go Hand in Hand?

Once again Warmists are abusing the messenger rather than discussing the facts. And they attempt to link only two individual climate skeptics to racism.  So even if all they say is true and relevant, they have no statistically sound basis for any generalization.  A sample of two is most unlikely to yield accurate generalizations. It would certainly fail a test of statistical significance.  Two swallows don't make a summer any more than one does.  So the post below is yet another example of the low intellectual level behind most Warmist writing

Famously climate denying Senator Ted Cruz announced for  President this week.

Above, see   Senator Cruz’s extravagant praise for one of the 20th century’s most prominent Southern racist segregationists, Jesse Helms. There’s a little well-documented history there for those too young to remember.

I’ve posted before on the link between racism and climate change denial, and I’ve noted that Senator Jim Inhofe is to climate denial as Strom Thurmond was to civil rights.  Both clung to outmoded and terribly destructive irrational prejudice, long beyond what reason would dictate. Even Thurmond softened his racial rhetoric in later years – while Inhofe has grown only more bombastic and shrill.

Here is yet another example, in Senator Cruz open admiration for Jesse Helms. Maybe there’s an answer to this in the way the denialist brain functions, that’s an area for further research.


Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

ISIS Child Soldiers

ISIS Child Terrorist

The Islamic State (ISIS) group has trained more than 400 children in Syria as fighters in 2015 alone, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor said Tuesday.

Calling them "Cubs of the Caliphate," the jihadist group provides intense military and religious training to children throughout its areas of control in Syria, the Britain-based monitor said, according to AFP.

Sleek videos published by ISIS-affiliated accounts show boys - some appearing to be as young as eight years old - loading and firing guns and crawling through sandy brush as part of military training.

The footage also shows children gathered around a table studying religious texts.

Once the boys turn 15, they are given the option to become full-fledged fighters with salaries, said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.

"ISIS officials try to woo children with money, weapons and teaching them how to drive cars," he said.

He said the children aren't forced to fight, but "since there are no (non-ISIS) schools, no work, this is what kids do during the day."
Reportedly, some children are recruited for more violent assignments.

Michigan Woman Accused of Murder

Angela Renee Kelsey-Mahoney

(Muskegon, Michigan) A 28-year-old local woman, Angela Renee Kelsey-Mahoney, has been accused of stabbing her husband to death.

Kelsey-Mahoney faces a charge of murder.
The stabbing occurred on Saturday morning, March 21.

Police had said the stabbing occurred while the couple was having a verbal dispute that apparently escalated.
Bond for Kelsey-Mahoney has been set at $5 million. She currently resides at the Muskegon County Jail.

Ohio Teacher Indicted for Sex with Student

Hannah Heekin

(Cincinnati, Ohio) A 23-year-old teacher at Roger Bacon High School, Hannah Heekin, has been indicted on charges for having sex with a student.

Heekin faces three counts of sexual battery.
Police say Heekin began an affair with a 17-year-old male student back in December. Police say the two were caught together earlier this month before school in a car in Ludlow Grove Park.

Officers say the two had sex twice before, once in her classroom.
Reportedly, Heekin will not be returning to school.

An odd thing

I have watched on video many American patriotic occasions and noted the songs sung.  But I have never seen "I vow to thee my country" sung on such occasions. Have I missed performances of it?   It is both intensely patriotic and intensely Christian.  It basically says how unreservedly the singers love their country but also goes on to say that the Kingdom of God is better still.  I welcome email from readers to enlighten me about it.  It is of course massively popular in Britain, where it originated just after WWI.  Below is a video of a beautiful young British soprano singing it. And the wonderful music was written by Gustav Holst, an eminent British composer.

There is also a choral performance here where just about everybody who is anybody in British politics can be seen.

The words:

I vow to thee, my country, all earthly things above,
Entire and whole and perfect, the service of my love;
The love that asks no question, the love that stands the test,
That lays upon the altar the dearest and the best;
The love that never falters, the love that pays the price,
The love that makes undaunted the final sacrifice.

I heard my country calling, away across the sea,
Across the waste of waters, she calls and calls to me.
Her sword is girded at her side, her helmet on her head,
And around her feet are lying the dying and the dead;
I hear the noise of battle, the thunder of her guns;
I haste to thee, my mother, a son among thy sons.

And there's another country, I've heard of long ago,
Most dear to them that love her, most great to them that know;
We may not count her armies, we may not see her King;
Her fortress is a faithful heart, her pride is suffering;
And soul by soul and silently her shining bounds increase,
And her ways are ways of gentleness, and all her paths are peace.

Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).

British Woman, 36, and Boy, 15

Kelly Richards

(Wales, UK)
A married woman has been given a two year suspended sentence after pleading guilty to having sex with her son’s 15-year-old friend.

Kelly Richards, 36, began the month-long affair after being comforted by the boy and her son after an argument with her husband.
The relationship was exposed by the mother of the 15-year-old.

Tip: JR

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