Saturday, October 09, 2010

Mr. Wen’s Rendezvous with Density

Precisely Because of the Extreme Violence of France's Gangsters, French Police Will Not Intervene During a Hold-Up

It would seem that the new generation of gangsters in the Lyon area have not heard that violence only occurs in America (aka the land of the nutty gun-lovers). Indeed, the — very young — criminals, who seem to come from la banlieue and who seem to base their attacks on the video games that they play, writes Richard Schittly in Le Monde, are multiplying hold-ups with an extreme violence. It is precisely for that reason, we learn, moreover, that the police will not intervene during the hold-up of a bank or a jewelry shop.
« Dans ce genre de situation, une intervention risque de déclencher une fusillade en plein centre-ville, on choisit de ne pas les intercepter immédiatement », justifie un commissaire de police.

Today on "Cooking with Joe"

A Legacy left behind by the Red Army: Soljanka

Of which there were very few, but like that evil genius Ripley’s love of Gulasch, mine is a weakness for Soljanka, a picante soup made popular among Eastern Germans by way of contact with their Soviet military comrades / douchebags / occupiers.

I have translated the recipe from the original Klingon, to which I’ve added my personal touches:

- 200 g /7-8 oz. of Yellow onion, finely chopped (avoid the vidalias or any new-fangled mild varieties)
- 100 g /3-1/2 oz. of unsliced bacon, cubed into small pieces
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 100 g /3-1/2 oz. of Tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon of Paprika
- 2 medium sized pickles (dill or sour are best), “julienne” cut to the extent one can with a pickle
- 500 g of meat: sausage, leftovers, or trimmed tips of pork or ham (anything, really, even leftover chicken!)
- (Add a tbp. of butter, if the meats are all lean.)
- 1,5 liters/ 3 pints of Beef stock (powdered stock may also be used, but omit the salt if you do)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon of capers

For decoration:

- Thin lemon wedges (thin sliced rings cut into triangles)
- Sour crème
- Dill


- Parsley
- A few sliced olives, or any other pickled favorites.
- Pepperoncini (one of my favorites)


Sauté the onions and bacon in the bottom of your soup pot, until the onions clarify. Do not let them brown.
Add all of the meats, pickles, and paprika for a few moments until they soften.
Then pour in the soup stock.
Add the lemon wedges to the stock, salt and pepper to taste.
Let it come to a boil, and then let it simmer for at least 15 minutes and up to 45 minutes.
Just prior to serving, add the capers, and all the optional faves, as well as the sour crème dollop right in the middle of the bowl.

Decorate with small lemon wedges an a small dollop of sour crème. Some prefer the sour crème “on the side”, or otherwise spoon out the amount they deem excessive prior to stirring it in. Some the dill reserved from preparation is also a good thing to drizzle on top.

Makes 4 servings, or 2 if served without any other dish. Serve with rye or black bread on the side, the gamiest smelling type that you can find.

This is one of the simpler recipes, prone to a more pickle dominated taste, but is easily tempered by using a little bit more bacon or sausage.

Click on the photo for an excellent Ukranian Soljanka recipe, which has a much fresher taste, not masked as heavily by the tomato paste. It should take on the taste of creative variations more readily.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Dear Reader, You Know the Routine

The consensus opinion takes a hit, below the water:

Americans are divided over whether President Barack Obama or his predecessor has performed better in the White House, according to a new national poll.

And a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Friday also indicates in the battle for Congress, Republicans hold large advantages over the Democrats among independents, men and blue-collar whites. The poll also indicates that Republicans are much more enthusiastic than Democrats to vote.

By 47 to 45 percent, Americans say Obama is a better president than George W. Bush. But that two point margin is down from a 23 point advantage one year ago.

"Democrats may want to think twice about bringing up former President George W. Bush's name while campaigning this year," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

No doubt the reality-based community is readying the new and updated signs. Afterall, it is a search for truth .............. right?

Why did God invent YouTube?

So we could watch Ladytron, naturally:

By an Amazing Coindidence, Muslims Built a Mosque at the Exact Place Where a Foreign Religion Treasured a Revered Spot

How incredible! It just so happens that, by an amazing coincidence, ancient Muslims in India happened to build the mosque of Barbi Masjid at Ayodhya, the birthplace of one of Hinduism’s most revered deities, Ram, where a Hindu temple seems to have existed beforehand. Jim Yardley:
Lawyers for Hindu groups … contended that a temple to Ram had existed on the site until it was demolished to make way for the Babri Masjid, constructed in the 16th century by India’s first Mughal ruler.
"India’s first Mughal ruler" is not incorrect in this case, but one wonders whether it is not a way to avoid saying "India’s first Muslim ruler". According to Hindus, furthermore, "Ram was born beneath the central dome of the destroyed structure." What an amazing coincidence is that?! Muslims just happened to build a mosque on the exact place where another, non-Muslim religion had one of their most revered spots and where the ruins of that other, non-Muslim religion's temple happened to be…

And this sort of recurring fact seems to escape the (more-intelligent-and-more-suave-than-the-average-clueless-American-clod) journalists of the New York Times (which elsewhere refers to "the Republican Party's rabble-rousing tea partiers"), when writing a hit piece on someone like Pamela Gellar

With Mayo on the Side, Please

Eye of Pickled Newt

Or some-such. Actually, I think that thing on the left is part ibex and part squid.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Zip it! I’m Sayin’ a Sooth, Here!

This Fall in America, It will be the Tea Party Movement versus the Cocktail Party Movement.

What I See

It seems to me that Uncle Sam, the eternal multilateralist, is learning his lesson all over again – and sweating it out. The Apathetic European standing next to him seems to be enjoying watching the waifish innocent townsfolk die at the hands of tin pot dictators and insurgents, while manning his precambrian Monty Python-esque artillery.

Oh, Swell: Time to Bring Out Yet Another Stereotypical Cartoon!

A report on cyberwar in Le Monde by Yves Eudes (also an article on the worm that attacked the U.S. Army) is the occasion for Rocco to practice his evil-and-cruel-shark-toothed-Yankee-soldier cartooning…

Meanwhile, articles such as the Nathalie Guibert piece on France's defense measures or the Yves Eudes piece on NATO's Estonia defense tactics or the Jean-Pierre Stroobants piece on cybercriminality in the EU are laconically illustrated by photos like that of a gendarme at his computer…

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Oh, Goody: Time to Bring Out Another Stereotypical Cartoon!

The scandal, real or alleged, of a European food agency president's belonging to the agro-alimentary lobby, as reported by Hervé Kempf in Le Monde — the information was uncovered by our old friend José Bové — allows Serguei to draw one of his typical fat-evil-cigar-smokin'-capitalist-lording-over-the-little-people cartoons.

This is what Social Progressives in the Near East Look Like

Gay Saudi prince 'murdered servant in ferocious attack'
Hey, he’s got all the right credientials... a gay ‘outsider’, aristocratic wealth that’s counteracted by the cred, a willingness to take ‘direct action’, a sense of entitlement, and, let’s face it, an unknown with political access.

On the surface, any number of towns on the west cioast of the United States would elect him to their city councils on the strength of ‘celebrating his identity’ alone.

Spaddacus! I loved you Like a Foddah!

So long Signalman SM3c Bernard Schwartz. You’ll always be first rate.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

What Else Happened During the Union Donkey Show?

With an effect on the U.S. territories of the Pacific, Guam, American Samoa, etal., Congress passed a “living wage” law some years back. Phased in in stages, it’s was meant to bring “diginity” etc., etc., and such like to a population largely used as a congressional plaything most of the time.

They said it is in nobody's interest-not workers, not businesses, and not the government-for uncontrolled cost increases to lead to business closures.
But something rather interesting happened on Saturday. A bill delaying the next $0.50/hour minimum wage hike until 2012 was signed by President Social-Justice, having been the culmination of a rushed through congressional voting process.

Even Radio New Zealand International reported that Democrats feared that Republicans with a view to making people sleep in the bed that they made, would not sign on, but the measure to suppress a minimum wage hike got through with full support of the left.
Moreover, the hourly wage increase couldn't have come at the worst possible time when the CNMI government has been partially shutdown effective Oct. 1 because of a lack of a timely passed balanced budget. Among other things, the shutdown means over 1,400 government employees will be temporarily out of job, until a budget is passed and signed into law.
Why did they do it? To reduce unemployment, and protect jobs and employers at a time when the economy is so uncertain.

Let's see ... What ELSE happened that day? Hm. Not much I guess, other than a horribly contrived Union and fringe-political set-up rally at the Lincoln Memorial, supported by the whole of Leftist Flunkydom who when not adapting to the free markets in the U.S. Territories, is advocating full unionization of the U.S. workforce to levels above both the market value for that work, and the value at which those employers can viably remain in business.

The “One Nation Working Together" Donkey show was not a gathering of individuals who came on their own of their own volition, it was an amalgam of dial-a-mob operations ranging from Union organizers to Trotskyites to “Anarchists”, and all the passive-aggressive fig-leaf “cause organization” trying to make the crackpot left look like they’re involved in feeding poor waifs on the streets, housing, and whatever else they think makes their political factions indispensable to humanity.

It was many things, but it was not a spontaneous expression of individuals thinking freely and joining together to make a point. It was paid for in large part with union dues, grant money, and had paid organizers whose business is constructing the appearance of sincerity and providing lunch and portable toilets, and generally being venal for a living.

I wonder if the U.S. Overseas Territory minimum wage hike freeze issue was presented by anyone who voted for is at the “One Nation Working Together” theatrics? I sort of doubt it.
It brought together a variety of left leaning groups fighting for these themes, as well as LGBT rights, comprehensive immigration reform, peace, civil rights, environmental protection, and worker’s rights.
One wonders how their stated, if not their expanded (to include the usual rainbow umbrella) collection of issues not related to economy, and especially not related to the general population of the nation – would be treated by Samoans trying to save their jobs.

Samoans vs. Professional LGBT political agitators. Hm. Professional LGBT political agitators vs. Samoans. Seriously, are these fringe loons crash-testing America the brain-trust or what?

"In Reality", Putin and Medvedev Do Not Believe in the Obama Administration's "Reset Button" Strategy

Even if Vladimir Putin has softened his foreign policy language and even if Dimitri Medvedev has put a smile on the face's régime towards the West, says political analyst Lilia Chevtsova, interviewed by Le Monde's Piotr Smolar, "in reality" the Russian leadership doesn't believe in the Obama administration's "Reset Button" strategy…
en matière de politique étrangère, n'y a-t-il pas un nouveau pragmatisme ?

La crise internationale a imposé la nécessité d'une diversification de l'économie. Elle a poussé le régime à arborer un sourire sur son visage à destination de l'Ouest. C'est le rôle de Medvedev. Même si Poutine, lui aussi, a adouci sa rhétorique, il ne croit pas, en réalité, au « reset button » [relance des relations] proposé par l'administration Obama.

Like, Way!

Co-op shopping, off-smelling wheat germ in yellowish plastic eating wierdos beware: Syd and Om are coming!

Elsewhere: Greenpeace are Saudi Arabia’s servile flunkies.

Saudi Arabia knows it can’t lobby against Canada, their chief competitor. That would cause a backlash, and increase demand for our oil by consumers. But Saudi Arabia doesn’t have to say a word, with groups like Greenpeace out and about. They’ll do all the oilsands-bashing for them.

Greenpeace is good at bashing oil — but only in very safe countries. They’ve never had a protest, or even a press conference, in Riyadh or Tehran.

Monday, October 04, 2010

"Our Time Has Come": It's Tea Time in the UK

With the British Tea Party that he launched in February, Daniel Hannan is trying to get his fellow Britons to follow in the wake of their cousins across the Pond, writes Virginie Malingre in Le Monde. In a country that has public spending increase from 38% in 2o00 to 48% today, he is joined by the likes of Matthew Elliott's Taxpayers' Alliance (TPA).
…la TPA fait évoluer le débat. A force de marteler, sans répit et exemples à l'appui, que l'argent des contribuables est gaspillé, "elle a acquis une forte influence", juge Tony Travers, politologue à la London School of Economics. D'ailleurs ni le Labour, ni les tories, ni les lib-dem n'ont fait campagne, en 2010, sur un Etat plus fort.

A SitRep from the Happiest Place on Earth

And I’m not kidding you. Your average garden variety European Ivan Ivanovich really DOES think that a certain country, population, etc., can be objectified in such a way that they will clam being the happiest people on earth, despite the stunning and enduring tradition of having a high suicide rate.

Danish ghettos ravaged by fire,” alerts the Jyllands-Posten. Every week in troubled Danish neighbourhoods, four fires on average burn down kindergartens, trash containers, cars and motor scooters, reports the Danish daily, based on fire department reports in the country’s three biggest cities.
According to one sociologist quoted in the paper, these acts are perpetrated by a hard core of ethnic youths who want their neighbourhoods to “take on the image of a dangerous ghetto”.
Because in a life where nothing matters, your biggest complaint can be either some detached social issue, a fake crisis of some sort, or the fact that your precious, tidy, overpriced society isn’t enough like a first-person shooter game, or your image of da hood.

Sunday, October 03, 2010


A message from Andie for Sunday (thanks to Mark)

”Caring mayor wants Roma register”

Why does their “caring” sound so much like a cross between pandering and fascism?

“Ethnic registration for Roma”, headlines De Volkskrant. Social democratic mayor Cor de Vos of Nieuwegein, a town in the central Holland, says that councils with the largest Roma populations should keep an ethnic register of the community. “We are dealing with a group of people which is not integrated in Dutch society,” he declared.
If that’s the case, why don’t they “register” gays and anyone who might haver ever practiced Islam?
“They need to be helped, for their own sake and that of their neighbourhood. But we can’t do that without knowing their situation.” Last Wednesday it was revealed that the city council of Ede has been holding police, child welfare and justice department files on the Roma since 1978. The council apologised but also said: “The law isn't in step with the issues.
And of course that was bad, and wrong. Sooooo in the interest of “caring”, there will be a lot more of it.

What next? Tattooed registration numbers to “show you care”?

Just to Tell you how Much they Care About People...

... a terror warning had to be played down because it elicited European complaints over the fear of lost travel revenue:
The Obama administration will warn U.S. citizens to be vigilant as they travel in Europe, providing updated guidance prompted by al-Qaida threats, American and European officials told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Such a move could have negative implications for European tourism, business and diplomacy if travelers fear there's a possibility of terror attacks.
Eight Germans and two British brothers are at the heart of the al-Qaida-linked terror plot against European cities.