and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
be with you all.
(2 Corinthians 13:14)
It used to be that Johnny would get in trouble for dipping Peggy’s pigtails in the ink well. He’d get walloped at school and sent home, where he’d get walloped again. And yes – Peggy would get a haircut. Even semi-competent adults could handle this situation, but no longer.
Now British schools are installing microphones and cameras in classrooms to catch Johnny in the act. The company marketing this (At 3,000 pounds/classroom) includes government-approved evidence bags, presumably so Peggy’s cut-off pigtails can be preserved for court.
This Orwellian system that runs 24/7 has raised some complaints, one from Martin Johnson, deputy general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers:
We strongly object to schools or colleges having free rein to use CCTV and microphones, especially in sensitive areas such as classrooms, changing rooms and toilets. We expect CCTV be used appropriately and not to spy on staff or pupils.
That’s a bit like expecting my dog not to eat a juicy steak I toss in her dish. I can tell her no, but eventually it’s gonna get eaten.
The Wall Street Journal has an article today about a former KGB guy’s prediction that the US will disintegrate in 2010. The prediction comes complete with a map showing the new “countries.”
He based the forecast on classified data supplied to him by FAPSI analysts, he says. He predicts that economic, financial and demographic trends will provoke a political and social crisis in the U.S. When the going gets tough, he says, wealthier states will withhold funds from the federal government and effectively secede from the union. Social unrest up to and including a civil war will follow. The U.S. will then split along ethnic lines, and foreign powers will move in.
Before you laugh too hard, you might want to give a passing thought to the Soviet Union.
He cites French political scientist Emmanuel Todd. Mr. Todd is famous for having rightly forecast the demise of the Soviet Union — 15 years beforehand. “When he forecast the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1976, people laughed at him,” says Prof. Panarin.
The Christmas Bird Count that Threecollie has been sharing with us is a much bigger event than I knew. Then again, I just watch birds from my window.
I just came across a blog post by Corey about a Northern Hawk Owl discovered during the count in Peru, NY. I guess these guys don’t normally come so far south, so birders have been coming from far and wide to take a peek, and lots of pictures. Don’t miss the ones posted by Jeff Nadler. They’re incredible.
Chris Brunner at LewRockwell.com has posted a list of all the banks in the United States, ranked by the credit troubles they may be having. The rating system is explained here, but basically if they scored 100 or more, they are in “very serious danger of collapse;” a score of 50 or over means they are “vulnerable.”
A big thanks to Chris for compiling all this information, which the banking industry doesn’t want us to have.
FYI, I am pleased to report that my bank scored a lowly 4 … not that many of their assets have my name on them!
And remember John Allison, the CEO I quoted a while back who had the audacity to throw darts at Paulson’s bailout of “poorly-run banks”? His bank, B,B,&T scored a lowly 5. We already know what happened to Goldman-Sachs, Paulson’s old bank. So who really knows about banking?