Every year the Fourth of July is marked by ringing affirmations of American exceptionalism. We are a special nation, uniquely founded on high ideals like freedom and equality. In practice, however, much of what sets the United States apart from other countries today is actually Southern exceptionalism. The United States would be much less exceptional...
Rob Duke's insight:
Every since Lot choice the cities on the plain and left Abraham to the hills, we're been fighting this urban vs. rural fight. It's too simplistic to assign everything that's wrong with America to the South.
We'd be less violent? Really? Have you checked out Chicago lately?
We'd be more tolerant? Really? Top 10 hate crime regions: Maine, Washington, Nevada, Connecticut, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Dakota, Michigan, and D.C. Only 3 of these regions are in the South.
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The Anchorage Police Department has asked the city to deploy a drastic, rarely-used tool known as criminal abatement if things don't change. The city would go through a judicial process to seize the property from its owner.
The technique is used only in “exceptional circumstances,” said Gary Gilliam, head of the Anchorage Police Department’s Community Action Policing team. He couldn’t think of the last time it was used against a private homeowner.
“You don’t want the government to suddenly come in and take somebody’s property, like right now. There has to be due process. This is huge: You’re taking a man’s home from him.”
Fenner, a former municipal snowplow driver who retired after an on-the-job injury, denies his neighbors' claims. He says they have launched a campaign to harass him with “nonsense” calls to the police.
“I’m not trying to damage the neighborhood,” he said.
Rob Duke's insight:
This is a Problem Oriented Policing tool normally reserved for seedy motels, and crack houses....what do you think about it's use here?
But, some might ask, aren't the commandments so much part of the Western world's broad cultural heritage that they hardly count as an affirmation of one particular doctrinal viewpoint? In certain contexts, perhaps. For example, a frieze on the wall of America's Supreme Court shows some of the great law-givers of history, including the Roman emperor Justinian, Moses and Muhammad. They are presented as people who helped establish the principle that human societies must live by a clear, transparent and fairly applied set of rules; this does not imply that any one of them had a monopoly of truth.
Rob Duke's insight:
Ironic that the Supreme Court can have Moses and Mohammed on their wall, but a state court can't have the 10 commandments....
IT IS not often that a criminal trial involves a prosecutor pushing for rehabilitation and appropriate counselling", and a defence lawyer urging the judge to jail his client. But that is what happened at a hearing on June 2nd for Amos Yee, a 16-year-old Singaporean blogger found guilty of circulating an obscene image and insulting Christians.
Alaska's Marijuana Control Board will craft regulations surrounding legalized recreational and commercial marijuana. Of 132 applicants vying for the spots, here are the five chosen by Gov. Bill Walker.
The EU is currently considering how it should respond to the phenomenon which is often called the "sharing economy". But there is a danger that lawmakers get caught up in a slick Silicon Valley narrative, which portrays profit-seeking companies as altruistic public services.
Uber is a good example of this....better to have taxi cabs with their imbedded political power?
For my own part, I'll take institutions that bring all activity into the light to invite all competition and in order to better regulate when we find those companies who are not altruistic (or at least act as "bad" citizens).....
Incredibly, because the 4% Consuls were used to refinance even older debt, some of the debt being repaid in early 2015 goes as far back as the 18th century. “In 1853, then-chancellor Gladstone consolidated, among other things, the capital stock of the South Sea Company originating in 1711, which had collapsed in the infamous South Sea Bubble financial crisis of 1720,” the UK Treasury said. And Chancellor George Goschen converted bonds first issued in 1752 and subsequently used them to finance the Napoleonic and Crimean Wars, as well as the Slavery Abolition Act of 1835.
Research published yesterday by Imperial College London suggests that hormones testosterone and cortisol may be having a negative and potentially dangerous influence on the decision-making processes of City workers. According to the study, the naturally-occurring steroids have been found to markedly increase the chances of risk-taking and audacious behaviour in men whose responsibilities include commercial and economic transactions.
Recently a storm took out a chain link fence separating the two countries at a park bisecting Tijuana and San Diego, letting people jump back and forth between nations.
Rob Duke's insight:
I interviewed a guy from Nayarit, Mexico who told me that he came to the U.S. for love. I thought he had followed a girl, but he told me that his brother had been lucky to find his love when they were both children. From an early age they both pledged their love to each other. When they were of age, they wed and were living the "good life", but then one day a drug kingpin saw the bride and wanted her for his own. She was, you see, a rare beauty...the kind that turn out to be princesses in storybooks. But, alas, this was no fairy-tale: the kingpin had the groom killed and took what he wanted. On the day of his brother's death, this man told me that he started walking north. He no longer wished to live where you could die just because you loved. He knew that if he ever would love in peace it would be here in the U.S.
This is why I don't believe we will ever stop the tide of people who wish to be here....you cannot stop love.
CHINA'S stockmarket sell-off continues, with the Shanghai Composite sell-off reaching 10% in a week and approaching 30% from the peak. Somoene must be to blame and the authorities are investigating "market manipulation" with some short-selling accounts suspended. Earlier this week, measures were announced to prop up the market, including a proposal to allow traders to pledge their houses in margin accounts; one of the craziest ideas ever announced. What next? Pledge your kidneys on commodity futures?
Rob Duke's insight:
Another reason why WCC isn't always easy to differentiate....
Here’s how speed limits are established in most states, according to Federal Highway Administration research: Traffic engineers conduct a study to measure the average speed motor vehicles move along a road. The speed limit is then set at the 85th percentile. From then on, 85 percent of drivers would be traveling under the speed limit and 15 percent would be breaking the law. Sometimes other factors2 are taken into consideration, but in most places, speed limits are largely determined by the speed most people feel safe traveling.
Alaska Wildlife Troopers said that the man couldn't invoke state laws allowing animals to be shot in defense of life and property because his improper storage of garbage had caused the incident.
Rob Duke's insight:
This is the jist of those who advance the idea that victims can contribute to their own victimization. See Routine Activities Theory, for instance. In rape investigations, this has been extremely controversial (e.g. the idea that the rape victim might contribute by failing to wear proper clothing, etc.).
What do you think? Does the victim have to be 100% correct in order to be a "true" victim?
“We find FCI’s conduct with respect to this entire case demonstrative of a particularly nasty type of scorched earth tactics,” the court opinion said, referring to Finton Construction as FCI. “While we strongly suspect that FCI is the prime mover behind the prosecution of this lawsuit, we remind FCI’s counsel–and indeed, all attorneys–that while they owe their clients a duty to zealously represent them, that zealousness does not trump the duty they owe the courts and the judicial process to prosecute only lawsuits with merit.
“The type of uncivil behavior and specious tactics demonstrated by filing this case represents conduct that brings disrepute to the entire legal profession and amounts to toying with the courts.”
The lead undercover agent in the federal investigation of the drug-dealing website Silk Road pleaded guilty Wednesday to using his position to extract $500,000 in digital currency from the drug kingpin and an investor in another enterprise. In a plea agreement filed in federal court in San Francisco, Carl Force also admitted signing a contract with 20th Century Fox in March 2014 for a movie about the Silk Road investigation without authorization from the Drug Enforcement Administration, where h
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