Doubts and mistrust are the mere panic of timid imagination, which the steadfast heart will conquer, and the large mind transcend

Eric Alterman explains what happened, Freed Alterman

Once Upon a Time’s take on the National Review’s and thus the conservative intellectual view of the NYT JFK plot. My take is that Republican bloggers and pundits have spent the last 36 hours hours seating in a dark corner of their mom’s basement crying that the big bad jihadists are going to kill us all unless we kill all of “them”. What is the opposite as being focused like a laser. It’s acting like the most over the top Joan Crawford drama queen, Unreasoning Hysteria as the Default Position: Joan Crawford Does Foreign Policy

Defreitas, er, Mohammed is a naturalized United States citizen. He is another splash in that gorgeous mosaic of American Islam — the one over whose purportedly seamless assimilation the mainstream media was cooing just a few days ago, putting smiley-face spin on an alarming Rasmussen poll. -( National Review)

There are about nine million Muslims in the U.S. if even one percent of them were dedicated jihadists that would be one hundred thousand jihadists. If we had that many people bent on committing terrorist acts against the U.S. that would be the time to start sounding a little panicky, if one chooses to react to serious threats with panic. Until then the U.S. will inevitably have another year in which good ol boys will kill more Americans then Muslim Americans. 2 killed 8 wounded at graduation party

STOCKBRIDGE, Ga., June 3 (UPI) — Two people were killed and at least eight were injured when a fight broke out at a high school graduation party in Stockbridge, Ga. over the weekend.

As OUAT puts it,

The United States now spends more on defense than almost the entire rest of the world combined. We have military power of a kind never before seen in history. We maintain approximately 1,000 bases in more than 130 countries around the globe. The idea that plots of this kind spring from a movement that constitutes some kind of “existential threat” to the United States is utterly asinine.

I think this is the fourth set of morons that has been caught, all involved in plots so primitive and ill thought out that while serious do have a certain comic aspects, yet every time a Muslim sets off a firecracker the big bad Right wets its pants as it screams we’re all gonna die. The Heretik points out that the fuel wouldn’t have “exploded” anyway ( Nice Chicken-Little graphic too) and David Goldstein

….engineers tend to build in automatic cutoffs and other safety stuff like that. It’s not like you can just light a fuse and the entire thing goes boom.

Can one imagine a plot like this succeeding in temporarily shutting down JFK? Sure. But then, so can a blizzard or an afternoon thunderstorm.


Ironically, these mini victories in “The War on Terror” prove exactly the opposite of what the Bushies contend: it is not a massive display of military force that disrupted these “terrorist” plots, but good, old fashioned police work. If the JFK and Fort Dix conspiracies really were anything more than just idle, angry fantasies, then they were criminal acts, and our law enforcement officials should be thanked for yet another job well done. But these same officials do themselves and our national security a disservice when they allow their efforts to be manipulated for propaganda purposes by our war-mongering White House.

I don’t know if the administration tweaks the timing on these ‘terror’ events or not, but they do seem to happen every time Bush losses another point in the polls or some news that verves off Bush’s script happens, Commanders Say Push in Baghdad Is Short of Goal

Three months after the start of the Baghdad security plan that has added thousands of American and Iraqi troops to the capital, they control fewer than one-third of the city’s neighborhoods, far short of the initial goal for the operation, according to some commanders and an internal military assessment.

The American assessment, completed in late May, found that American and Iraqi forces were able to “protect the population” and “maintain physical influence over” only 146 of the 457 Baghdad neighborhoods.

Apropos of the not very good news from Iraq, America is way better than Iraq, trust me

The most noted hardships associated with being deployed revolve around violence or the potential for violence. While those are certainly the worst aspects of living in a war zone, the most pervasive and persistent negative was the lack of freedom. I was stationed at three different locations of varying size and at the biggest base I was allowed maybe two miles of discretionary wandering. As an inherant wanderer the song “Don’t Fence Me In” felt quite prescient. What with the razor wire perimeter and guard towers it isn’t too much of a stretch to call a military post a prison. The only difference is that we volunteered to be there, we got paid a lot better than dudes making license plates, and we wouldn’t get shot on sight if we tried to leave (but they certainly would come after us).

Reading the post it reminded of some movies especially the original MASH. I guess that even in the darkest of times in the worse places even a dark sense of humor may not make you bullet proof, but can save your mental life.

“Doubts and mistrust are the mere panic of timid imagination, which the steadfast heart will conquer, and the large mind transcend.” – Helen Keller

The Big Apple and Bat Development


Big Apple at Night 

Other then Michael Keaton are their bats in the Big Apple? If so I wonder how they deal with the skyscrapers, bridges and sounds that must be disorienting to some degree. None of these wonderings are answered in this post from Pharyngula, but it is about bats, Bat development

Here, we describe and illustrate a staging series of embryonic development for the short-tailed fruit bat, Carollia perspicillata, based on embryos collected at timed intervals after captive matings. As Carollia can be readily maintained and propagated in captivity and is extremely abundant in the wild, it offers an attractive choice as a chiropteran model organism. This staging system provides a framework for studying Carollia embryogenesis and should prove useful as a guide for embryological studies of other bat species and for comparisons with other orders of mammals.

As you look at the first three photos pretend you don’t know what species of mammal you’re looking at, then try and guess what species those early embryos would become.