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2006 May 05 — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
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Amadinejad Is Nothing

At Pacific Views Natasha was talking about the Iran Freedom Support Act in Congress.

She provided a link to a BBC site on the Iran government. If you look at the graphic and follow the links you will discover that the capo di tutti capi of Iran is Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader. He controls the military.

At number two is Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, who was defeated in the 2005 presidential elections by Mahmoud Amadinejad. Rafsanjani is deputy chairman Assembly of Experts and chairman of the Expediency Council. The Presidency would have been icing, but he already owns the cake.

The way the system works, Amadinejad has slightly less power in Iran than Queen Elizabeth has in Britain. He is essentially a contact person for all of those annoying people who want to say something to the government of Iran.

The Assembly of Experts gets to select the Supreme Leader, and the Expediency Council mediates disputes between the legislature and the Guardian Council.

Amadinejad isn’t a cleric, so he’s ineligible to even belong to the real power centers in Iran. This structure shows why the former reformer president, Mohammad Khatami, couldn’t institute any reforms.

Mikhail Ivanovich Kalinin was the titular head of the Soviet Union from 1919 until his death in 1946. After 1938 his job tile was changed to President. The name of the city of Koenigsburg on the Baltic was changed to Kaliningrad to honor him. He is buried in the Kremlin. Almost no one knows who he was. That’s the kind of power Amadinejad has, so let’s just ignore him and he’ll disappear into history.

May 5, 2006   2 Comments

It Gets Worse

CNN reports on the results of the second autopsy on Martin Lee Anderson: Boot camp guards killed teen

Hillsborough County Chief Medical Examiner Vernard I. Adams conducted a second autopsy after Anderson’s family, other medical experts and civil rights leaders balked at the conclusion of the first examination.

“Martin Anderson’s death was caused by suffocation due to actions of the guards at the boot camp,” Adams wrote.

“The suffocation was caused by manual occlusion of the mouth, in concert with forced inhalation of ammonia fumes that caused spasm of the vocal cords resulting in internal blockage of the upper airway.”

The best I can say about these people is that they weren’t trained, except there was a nurse there and she should have known that if someone is having trouble breathing, covering their mouth and using an ammonia capsule is not the answer.

The mindset is that the inmates are slackers who need discipline, which is probably true for 90% of the inmates, but there is the other 10% that is the real problem. If Anderson did have sickle cell anemia, as claimed by the Bay County medical examiner, he wouldn’t be in shape for the physical activity of the camp and that should have been part of his medical record.

May 5, 2006   4 Comments

Porter Goss Resigns?

Just in via NPR news on the radio, Porter Goss has resigned as Director of CIA.

You have to wonder if it involves “poker parties” that Goss “absolutely, positively, unequivalently didn’t attend”…really…honest.

May 5, 2006   19 Comments

A Visual Pun

Experience the mind of the Culture Ghost.

It’s no fair looking in comments.

May 5, 2006   6 Comments

Cinco de Mayo


It is interesting that Wikipedia has had to “lock” its Cinco de Mayo page. I suspect it may be related to the sudden appearance of sites opposing the celebration of this semi-holiday.

In Mexico Cinco de Mayo or Batalla de Puebla, is only really celebrated in the state of Puebla, where the battle took place.

The Mexican army won on May the 5th, 1862, but on May the 8th the attack resumed and the French Foreign Legion captured Puebla and then went on to Mexico City.

It has the status of St. Patrick’s Day in the US, an excuse to eat different food, and drink different booze, and be obnoxious show an interest in other cultures.

Margaritas, tacos, and the destruction of piñatas, that’s what it is really about.

May 5, 2006   10 Comments

Friday Cat Blogging

Three on a Ladder

Friday Cat Blogging

Look Mom, the axe murderer!

[Editor: The Lone Ranger and two kittens atop a four-foot step ladder. I have no idea why the kittens are so paranoid, or how they managed to squeeze on the top step.

Friday Ark

May 5, 2006   12 Comments