Perhaps a look at pedestrians,
And, perhaps a more sensible approach,
Let's start with the incandescent idiocy of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. If Bloomberg had a scintilla of foresight, he would have prevented anyone from ever hearing the words "ground zero" and "mosque" in the same sentence.
Bloomberg is not only the mayor. He's also a billionaire with massive sway in the city's media, finance and cultural institutions. Moreover, the Big Apple is a Hieronymus Bosch hellscape for landlords and developers. Rent control, historic preservation, zoning, environmental impact, community protests, union delays -- not to mention plain old red tape and corruption -- offer enough tools to stop any project before it starts (Heck, ground zero is still a gaping hole, and everyone has wanted that land to be developed, fast).
The notion that Bloomberg couldn't have quietly stopped this in New York is like saying Satan is powerless to do anything about the heat in Hades. He could have kept the molehill from becoming a mountain with an afternoon's worth of phone calls. The center would be built, just not so close to ground zero; no big deal
But instead of quietly extinguishing a controversy, Bloomberg said it was as important a "test of the separation of church and state as we may see in our lifetime."Yeah, that's right, Mr. Jonah "Fuck the Constitution" Goldberg thinks that Mayor Bloomberg should abuse the powers of his office in a blatantly unconstitutional attempt to halt the Cordoba House. Perhaps Jonah "No Religious Freedom" Goldberg has forgotten that part of the greatness of our country is our Bill of Rights, and the freedoms it guarantees us. Including the freedom to build a mosque where ever one damn well pleases.
For the moment, there are no clear answers about what happened to most of the missing centenarians. Is the country witnessing the results of pension fraud on a large scale, or, as most officials maintain, was most of the problem a result of sloppy record keeping? Or was the whole sordid affair, as the gloomiest commentators here are saying, a reflection of disintegrating family ties, as an indifferent younger generation lets its elders drift away into obscurity?
Some health experts say these cases reflect strains in a society that expects children to care for their parents, instead of placing them in care facilities. They point out that longer life spans mean that children are called upon to take care of their elderly parents at a time when the children are reaching their 70s and are possibly in need of care themselves.
In at least some of the cases, local officials have said, an aged parent disappeared after leaving home under murky circumstances. Experts say that the parents appeared to have suffered from dementia or some other condition that made their care too demanding, and the overburdened family members simply gave up, failing to chase after the elderly people or report their disappearance to the police.Culturally, nursing homes are considered shameful in Japan. When the elderly can no longer care for themselves, they usually move in with their children. Assisted living facilities and senior care are becoming more common, but nursing homes are still rare. I can understand feeling shame in placing a parent in a nursing home, but the shame of allowing an ill parent to wander to either die or be placed in a home by the state must be so much more shameful. Of course, continuing to collect the pension might ease some of the guilt.
In a more typical case,... relatives of a man listed as 103 years old said he had left home 38 years ago and never returned. The man’s son, now 73, told officials that he continued to collect his father’s pension “in case he returned one day.”Japanese officials have their work cut out for them. They need to improve record keeping, and more importantly, they must make sure that their elderly population is receiving the care they need.
“Living until 150 years old is impossible in the natural world,” said Akira Nemoto, director of the elderly services section of the Adachi ward office. “But it is not impossible in the world of Japanese public administration.”
Fox, whose successor Felipe Calderon is mired in a bloody military campaign against powerful drug cartels, criticized the government's anti-drugs strategy on his blog, joining the ranks of other Latin American leaders who say the war on drugs is fundamentally flawed.
"Legalization does not mean that drugs are good ... but we have to see (legalization of the production, sale and distribution of drugs) as a strategy to weaken and break the economic system that allows cartels to earn huge profits," Fox wrote in a posting over the weekend.
"Radical prohibition strategies have never worked."
Violence is escalating in Mexico, where cartels earn billions of dollars a year as they battle for lucrative routes smuggling cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine and other illegal drugs into the United States.
An estimated 28,000 people have died since late 2006, when Calderon sent soldiers and police across the country to battle drug gangs. The United States is funneling hundreds of millions of dollars into beefing up Mexico's ability to chase cartels.
Yet there are few signs Mexico has turned the corner on what may be the defining issue of Calderon's presidency. Many Mexicans now fear violence could deter business and investment, especially if it becomes more generalized.
"Although we know that many of the deaths are criminals killed by their rivals, unfortunately there are also officials, police and innocent people who have died," Fox said.
The "intrusion of Big Porn" mirrors the "rapid growth of the porn addict's habit," said Reisman, who advocates a large-scale class-action lawsuit – like those against Big Tobacco – that brings the evidence of pornography's "actionable damages" before a jury.
The Kinsey legacy of "pornography and perversion," said Reisman, "is no longer content to fill the luxury hotel rooms, the Internet and most of, it's moved on even to the Sears [website]."
"Children cannot buy alcohol because their bodies and brains are corrupted by its toxins," she added. "Similarly, Sears' reckless distribution of pornography, of 'erototoxins' in the public space, should be charged with deliberate brain damage – bringing the role of dopamine as a 'natural drug' to an American jury. Let the scientific challenge begin!"Erototoxins? I gotta get me some of those.
A month ago, it looked like Levi Johnston was getting married to the mother of his child, Bristol Palin.
That didn't quite go as planned. But Johnston's got his eye on another prize: The Wasilla, Alaska, city hall. Johnston wants to run for mayor -- and yes, the cameras will be following him. As Variety wrote earlier today, Stone and Co. is shooting a pilot starring Johnston, which it then plans to shop to the networks.
Whether it's a slam dunk remains to be seen -- notoriety doesn't automatically make one a TV star. But Johnston is telegenic, and the concept is just strange enough that a crafty reality producer could make it work, particularly if the show is populated with characters from both Alaska and Hollywood (where Johnston's also trying to break in).
Despite what’s been reported, Montana Fishburne said, her career choice isn’t due to finances, Paris Hilton-like ambitions or a falling-out with dad. They still have a good relationship, she insisted. “I was inspired by the success of the people before me that have made it with their videos,” she said. “I had ambitions of being in porn, and I fulfilled my ambition. It’s no crazy Lifetime story."Part of me feels that I should be sex positive and support her decision. She had a dream that she fulfilled, and she appears happy and proud. Nothing is wrong with porn, and I feel that the stigma it carries is misplaced, but I can't help but think of what Chris Rock said:
When New York traffic officials reviewed the papers required for the oversized truck that would transport the chariot into Manhattan, they saw that the cargo inside was classified as a vehicle, and demanded its Vehicle Identification Number.