Speaking of fraud

The Flem-file writes of Michael Vick, the greatest QB ever:

I recently had a long conversation with Falcs QB coach Mike Johnson, who assured me that Vick was 1) working on his checkdowns, something that’s vital to the West Coast because with coverage zones swamped, those late release guys are usually unaccounted for; 2) working on his footwork in the pocket and; 3) working on his defensive recognition. Then the first three things I saw him do against the Colts and Ravens were 1) run out of the pocket with a checkdown wide open in the flat; 2) bounce in his stance at the end of his drop instead of getting rid of the ball when his back foot hit the turf and; 3) look absolutely befuddled by the stunts and fronts devised for him by Baltimore.

Now, Mike can do all of the above, I’ve seen it with my own eyes. So it has become a matter of whether or not he wants to, whether or not he chooses to. He’s already a great quarterback. But if he can’t take the next step as a passer, he’s only pretending to be a transcendent talent.

It’s not all about the athletics… it’s not all about the athletics… it’s not all about the athletics.

What I’ve said about McNabb goes for Vick three times over. But Flem is wrong. Vick is not a great quarterback, he is a great athlete who is a barely passable quarterback. It is possible that he will become a great quarterback, but I think it rather unlikely.

An inadvertant ray of light

NRO accidentally tells the truth:

The pictures from Gaza are wrenching: children crying and trying to push away the Israeli soldiers — some of them also in tears — who have arrived to chase them from their homes. On the other hand, they are heartening too. This is a civilized, democratic society at work. Prime Minister Sharon’s decision to pull out of Gaza represents the lawful will of the Israeli majority, and it will not be frustrated by a minority, no matter how passionate or committed.

So, Sharon ran for office by promising no territorial concessions of any kind. He won. Once in office, he reversed his position over the vehement protests of his own party and cabinet ministers.

As much-betrayed conservative Republicans know, this is exactly how a civilized democratic society works. The politicians lie, the people fall for the lies, and the politicians go on to do whatever they like in office under the cover of their fraudulently obtained public approval.

Ethnic cleansing

A definitive definition:

The term ethnic cleansing refers to various policies of forcibly removing people of one ethnic group. At one end of the spectrum, it is virtually indistinguishable from forced emigration and population transfer, while at the other it merges with deportation and genocide…. The term “ethnic cleansing” has come to mean the displacement or expulsion from a territory of one ethnic group by another. The displacement is usually forcible, though there are examples of voluntary or compensated ethnic cleansing. The 20th century has seen numerous cases, particularly in Europe and the Middle East.

At the most general level, however, ethnic cleansing can be understood as the forced expulsion of an “undesirable” population from a given territory due to religious or ethnic discrimination, political, strategic or ideological considerations, or a combination of these.

I note that of the many historical examples given by Wikipedia, most involve a relatively non-violent relocation of an ethnic or religious group. The only disingenuousness here is on the part of those attempting to apologize for the Israeli government’s actions in Gaza; the primary connection with genocide is that it is sometimes used as a euphemism for it.

The fact that most apologists for this most recent ethnic cleansing are ignorant of Greek, Finnish, Indian, Italian, Pakistani and Turkish history, among others, does not change the fact that the Israeli government is doing precisely what at least 30 non-genocidal governments have done since World War II.

As to the aspect of the definition which refers to “one group by another”, it must be remembered that Ariel Sharon and the Israeli government are secular, while the settlers are religious Jews.

Investment 101

Soaring home prices in California haven’t deterred first-time buyers from entering the market in record numbers, and many of them are going to extraordinary lengths to dive in, according to a study released Thursday.

Californians are increasingly sinking more than half their incomes into mortgage payments, taking on enormous debt, forgoing down payments and signing interest-only or adjustable-rate mortgages, according to the study by the Public Policy Institute of California. Although California still lags behind most states in terms of home ownership, the buying frenzy has lifted it to its highest level — 59 percent — since 1960, the study found.

What is the most fundamental rule of making money? Buy low, sell high. So, if prices are at all time highs, what does this rule suggest is the correct thing to do if you wish to profit?