Saturday, November 09, 2013


Lenny Kravitz opens with Fly Away, a single drawn from his 1998 album 5.

He was named after his uncle, Leonard Kravitz, a Korean War hero who saved most of his platoon from the Chinese wiping it out but who was himself killed in the action. It earned him a DSC posthumously.

I'm very much okay with Lenny. Terrific music, no arrogant brainless fuckface like so many music celebs today, not shy to call himself a Christian.

Okay, then come The Who with Baba O'Riley.

From the 1971 album Who's Next.

Slaap wel.


Friday, November 08, 2013


Don't miss, over at Townhall, Ann Coulter's take on Obamacare.

"So now it turns out Obama knew that 93 million Americans would have their health insurance canceled the whole time he was claiming, "If you like your insurance, you can keep it. Period."

Obama lied. Period. "Hope and Change" was actually "A Sucker Is Born Every Minute."

Even without the 2010 Health and Human Services (HHS) report admitting that 93 million Americans would lose their health insurance, anyone with half a brain (which is a pre-existing condition) knew that millions of Americans would be thrown off their insurance plans under Obamacare. Under the law, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is to determine what every health insurance plan must cover -- and any plans that don't are illegal.

As a result, gay guys are now going to be forced to buy plans that cover maternity care. Mormons will have to buy plans that cover gambling addiction therapy. Elderly couples can buy only insurance that includes pediatric dental care. Catholic hospitals will be required to provide birth control and abortions.

Our federal overseers, led by the arrogant and smug gender-feminist Sebelius, know what's best for us. (Which is so nice of her since, as she recently pointed out, she doesn't work for us.) Her idea of flexibility is not requiring Catholic priests to perform abortions. Not yet, anyway.

Obviously, health insurance premiums are going through the roof with all these federal mandates. Michael Tanner of the Cato Institute reports that health insurance premiums will be higher than before Obamacare in at least 45 states -- an astronomical 256 percent higher in some cases. The Los Angeles Times says middle-income families in California will pay 30 percent more for health insurance, even with the subsidies.

Policies are being canceled because your old plan -- the one you shopped for and liked -- is now illegal. It doesn't cover Sandra Fluke's dental dams. Obama is blaming the insurance companies for discontinuing policies that he made illegal. (At least he isn't blaming the cancellations on a guy who put a movie trailer on the Internet this time.)

Isn't it your basic duty as a caring human being to buy an expensive health care plan you don't really want? Because who knows better about the health care needs of 310 million Americans than a smug gender-feminist? Certainly not you."

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"The best we can hope for is that influence-peddlers and government bureaucrats make wise decisions about our health care, just as they did with Solyndra, Social Security, public education and the Amtrak food service. Oops! (Only the government could lose billions of dollars with a monopoly.) From the people who brought you the Postal Service ... here's Obamacare!

It's the homework requirement that is the most annoying aspect of Obamacare. Sure, millions of Americans will lose their health insurance and be forced to buy plans they don't want. And many, many millions will no longer be able to go to the doctor of their choosing -- or any doctor at all!

But we've also all been given homework -- mountains of reports, exchanges, insurance plans and mail to study. I'd prefer a 50 percent tax hike to this forced busy-work under Obamacare.

What if Americans don't want to spend weeks online figuring out their new insurance options? What if we don't want to provide the government with reams of personal information simply to be able to buy health insurance? What if we just want to pay our doctor directly for a yearly checkup? Why do we have to examine HHS regulations to find out how much that's going to cost us in fines and taxes?

Under Obamacare, every day is tax day.

And for what? Eighty-five percent of Americans were happy with their health care before Obamacare, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index -- higher than almost any other product or service polled, with even Amazon coming in at 88 percent satisfaction. Even uninsured Americans were as satisfied with their health care as Canadians were with their national health care.

Kausfiles assured us there would be no death panels or benefits cuts under Obamacare because the voters would rise up and punish politicians if they dared cut our benefits!

What about those of us who don't want to be in a constant state of agitation just to get the health care of our choice? Not everyone is better off in a world where the pushy win and the quiet and unassuming die because their rare diseases didn't attract a band of noisy lobbyists.

No group of government bureaucrats can substitute for hundreds of millions of Americans making individual choices about their own lives and their own health. It would be as if the government took it upon itself to tell us whom to marry. Only someone who went to Harvard would think central planners should do that.

The smart people in the Soviet Union tried to plan the nation's agriculture, and the result was 50 years of "bad weather." And they were dealing with inert objects -- land, seeds and crops.

They didn't have to consider whether the fertilizer was a teetotaler who didn't anticipate needing substance abuse therapy or a priest who preferred to skimp on marital counseling insurance.

Our central planners think they can direct something infinitely more complex than farmland: human beings and their individual health needs. Under Obamacare, the pushy and the connected win. Everyone else loses."

And if you don't like Ann Coulter, maybe you're more sympathetic to me, and it that cas you might want to listen to a few observations of mine:

The bipartisan CBO (Congressional Budget Office) predicts that even under Obamacare, the number of uninsured will never fall below 30 million. Check it out here. Now call me a callous monster, but in which respect does 30 million uninsured differ that much, relatively speaking with a pop. of 310 million, from the estimated CURRENT 49 million? And to what degree is the latter number really a reflection of the despised 'heartlessness' of the 'American system'? You will always have uninsured. How many of those 49 million uninsured are really incapable of buying a plan, and how many can, but simply haven't thought of doing so yet? Christ, ten years ago I myself DID NOT HAVE health care coverage!!! Because I was young and healthy and thought that it was something for when I got a little further on the slippery path to old geezerdom.

No honestly, right now almost 90 per cent of the about 255-260 million people with an insurance, or covered by it, are hunky dory with their insurance. That's about 230 million people.

Under Obamacare, not only will you STILL have about, say, two-thirds of the number of uninsured right now, PLUS the majority of those with an O-Care insurance not happy with it. 'What difference does it make'?

Long before Obamacare, the country that spent the most on healthcare, in absolute terms and on a per capita basis, WAS the US already. Take a look at this list e.g.:

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According to OECD numbers, the US spent a whopping 8,233 US$ per capita in 2010, for a total of 17.6 per cent of GDP. That's breathtaking, especially when you compare it with, uh, my own Belgistan: 3,969 US$ which translates into 10.5 per cent of GDP.

And yet I'm VERRRY much pleased with our healthcare system, I'm living proof of it.

In other words, it's not a matter of not spending enough, as demonrats and international leftards want the whole world to believe (as a child I was spoonfed the notion that if in the US you fall seriously ill and you can't pay for a cure you are left to die in the gutter) as it is of getting more bang for the buck.

In my opinion, policymakers in the US, and by that I mean not only demonratic policymakers, should actually have taken a close look to how it is done here instead of coming up with an unworkable moloch that will make things only WORSE...

We don't have a scam like the UK's NHS. Our doctors and nurses are not state employees. Most of them work in hospitals and clinics that are VZW's - Verenigingen Zonder Winstoogmerk - or tax exempt entities. Sure, they do receive state funds to make ends meet but by and large the State, until now thank God, does not meddle in how our medical institutions organize their work. There's also state of the art private clinics thanks to the principle of competition. And somehow, somehow, our insurance premiums are fair. I pay around 720 EUR yearly for a plan that covers our family of four. How that is possible when premiums in the States are reportedly so much higher I don't know. Perhaps the staggering costs of litigation for alleged medical wrongdoing has something to do with it.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, looking closely at successful health care systems and modelling the US system after that would have been FAR MORE effective than coming up with a costly monstrosity that in the end will make things WORSE for basically everyone.

Just my two eurocents.


Wednesday, November 06, 2013


A horrifying article from The Gatestone Institute by Soeren Kern:

"I want London to stand alongside Dubai and Kuala Lumpur as one of the great capitals of Islamic finance anywhere in the world." — David Cameron, Prime Minister, Great Britain.

But critics say that British ambitions to attract investments from Muslim countries, companies and individuals are spurring the gradual establishment of a parallel financial system based on Islamic Sharia law. The Treasury also said some sukuk Islamic bond issues may require the government to restrict its dealings with Israeli-owned companies in order to attract Muslim money.

The London Stock Exchange will be launching a new Islamic bond index in an effort to establish the City of London as one of the world's leading centers of Islamic finance.

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Britain also plans to become the first non-Muslim country to issue sovereign Islamic bonds, known as sukuk, beginning as early as 2014.

The plans are all part of the British government's strategy to acquire as big a slice as possible of the fast-growing global market of Islamic finance, which operates according to Islamic Sharia law and is growing 50% faster than the conventional banking sector.

Although it is still a fraction of the global investment market -- Sharia-compliant assets are estimated to make up only around 1% of the world's financial assets -- Islamic finance is expected to be worth £1.3 trillion (€1.5 trillion; $2 trillion) by 2014, a 150% increase from its value in 2006, according to the World Islamic Banking Competitiveness Report 2012-2013, published in May 2013 by the consultancy Ernst & Young.

But critics say that Britain's ambitions to attract investments from Muslim countries, companies and individuals are spurring the gradual establishment of a parallel global financial system based on Islamic Sharia law.

British Prime Minister David Cameron announced the plans during a keynote speech at the ninth World Islamic Economic Forum, which was held in London from October 29-31, the first time the event has ever been held outside the Muslim world.

"Already London is the biggest center for Islamic finance outside the Islamic world," Cameron told the audience of more than 1,800 international political and business leaders from over 115 countries.

"And today our ambition is to go further still. Because I don't just want London to be a great capital of Islamic finance in the Western world, I want London to stand alongside Dubai and Kuala Lumpur as one of the great capitals of Islamic finance anywhere in the world."

David Cameron, this blunt IDIOT and sorry excuse for a PM, obviously is incapable of acknowledging that the muslim world is underperforming dramatically economically. Muslim financing methods are sluggish and totally inefficient. By contrast, western financing methods are the unquestionable engine behind the world's economic growth, as they have been copied by basically all other (non-muslim) countries, even China. Genuine drawbacks like crashes in the stock market are in se not unavoidable, as they are often the result of government intervention (read harmful legislation) and when not, their effects are relatively well digested IF, again, government(s) do not interfere.

By contrast, what have islamic financing methods ever produced apart from high-profile infrastructure projects that are basically the result of oil wealth? The following exerpt offers a sobering diagnosis of islam's inability to foster sound economic systems:

"The evidence of dismal economic condition in Muslim world, compared to the other regions of the globe, is obviously staggering. Even a scant examination of the key economic indicators in prominent Muslim countries reveals abysmal results. I put together a table showing the values of a few such indicators for 17 prominent Muslim countries and carefully examined and compared and contrasted them with those for the industrialized nations. These 17 countries all have a population of more than ten millions, at least 88% of which is Muslim. The findings may be appalling but not totally new or surprising. With the exception of Turkey and a couple of oil-rich counties, namely Iran and Saudi Arabia, almost all the other Muslim countries I looked into have a per capita income level of less than $5,000, in most cases even less than $2,000. To put this in perspective, the per capita income for United States is around $47,000, which is currently ranked number seven in the world. The share of population living below poverty line (defined as the annual income of nearly $20,000 for a family of four according to the US Census Bureau) is another telling statistics. This rate in key Muslim countries ranges from 12% in Syria to as high as 63% in Niger, 53% in Afghanistan, and 45% for both Yemen and Bangladesh. This rate is about 18% for Iran.

One can surmise that the percentage of population living below poverty line should be very low for a rich country like the US or really high for the poor nations. Well, it is not necessarily so. This rate, for example, is currently about 13% for the US simply because income distribution is fairly inequitable in this country and the rich and poor gap has been widening during the last three decades. On the contrary, for a poor country with low per capita income, like Syria, the same rate is relatively low, 12%. This is either due to reasonably even distribution of income or because of statistical inaccuracies.

Often, economists use the combined rates of unemployment and inflation for specific year, known as the misery index, to gauge the extent of economic well being for a country or for international comparison. The lower is this index, the better is economic condition. Rising index, on the other hand, signifies economic stagnation. The misery index of more than 10% is considered unacceptable for the United States. For the past 15 years, the misery index has been around 9% for the U. S. economy in average despite the gloomy economic condition in recent years, thanks to very low rate of inflation. The misery index for the major Muslim countries ranges from 57% for Afghanistan, 58% for Iraq, 46% for Yemen, and 17% for morocco. This rate stands at 27% for Iran. One must also be mindful that all economic statistics in these are published exclusively by government and are subject to manipulation and window dressing.

Lagging behind industrialized nations in production of manufactured products and services, many Muslim countries mainly rely on export of oil, raw materials, and basic agricultural products as the primary source of revenues. The total value of exports of the selected Muslim countries is nearly $708 billion a year including the vast amount of money from oil exports. This number is about 50% of the value of the China’s total exports, and is less than the total value of annual exports by Japan. There is evidently no feasible way to calculate the value of the non-oil exports for all the oil-exporting Muslim countries in my sample because they do not publish any relevant reliable data. However, according to a research conducted by some Arab scholars, the total value of non-oil exports by the entire Arab countries is less than the value of exports by the tiny country of Finland!"

But if you though that Britain's flirt with economic disaster was "all", forget about it. It goes further than that:

"In 2012, the British government began offering Muslim workers a Sharia-compliant pension fund in the public sector. A new government agency, the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST), will give Muslims who do not already have a company pension the option of investing in the HSBC Life Amanah Pension Fund, a Sharia-compliant pension scheme. The initial target market comprises some 200,000 Muslims in Britain.

In June 2011, Pointon York, an independent financial services company based in Leicestershire in central England, announced that it will begin offering four Sharia-compliant Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP) products that comply with Islamic law.

Pointon York was the first specialist SIPP provider to receive Sharia-compliant accreditation by the Islamic Bank of Britain (IBB), which has pioneered Islamic retail banking in the United Kingdom. The IBB will supervise the entire life-cycle of Pointon York's pension funds to ensure full compliance with Sharia legal principles.

Muslim families in Britain can already acquire Sharia-compliant baby bonds under the British government's Child Trust Fund scheme. In 2008, Britain's Financial Services Authority (FSA) authorized the establishment of the country's first Islamic insurance company as well as the country's first Sharia MasterCard, called the Cordoba Gold MasterCard.

In addition, takaful, a type of Islamic insurance, reached a new high in 2012, with premiums estimated to have reached around $30 billion, according to The City UK, the financial services lobby group.

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PM Cameron told the economic forum that Britain has also taken steps to ensure that Muslims are not discriminated against by implementing measures ending "double taxation" on Islamic mortgages and introducing alternative forms of student and start-up loans to comply with a ban on interest payments. "Never again should a Muslim in Britain feel unable to go to university because they cannot get a student loan simply because of their religion," he said.

But some are saying that Britain should go even farther in aligning its financial system with Sharia law. In an interview with the newspaper London24, Jodie Ginsberg of Demos Finance, a financial services research firm, said: "David Cameron is right to throw Britain's doors open to the Muslim world to showcase our trading wares. But we should also use this forum as an opportunity to consider how the principles of Islamic finance itself, not just the money generated in the Muslim world, might be applied in the UK. Islamic finance is one of the few models successfully to have weathered the 2008 credit crunch and its aftermath."

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Absolute lunacy.


Monday, November 04, 2013


I'm fucked up and can't bring myself to write an original post for the moment, I'm simply lacking the gusto. The company is consuming all my energy. It's not that there aren't sufficient topics, quite the contrary. In Belgium, the disastrous handling of the economy by our very left of center government (and I mean disastrous). The (predictable) trainwreck that's Obamacare. Cameron hellbent on making London the foremost center of sharia compliant banking in the West. The very sad infighting among rightwingers, be it Steyn vs some lesser gods (not that I blame Steyn, it's the others who started it), or between GOP factions. There's a plethora of topics. But sorry, can't. Can't.

Watch this video instead. Colin Flaherty and the trailer of White Girl Bleed A Lot.

More and more I'm beginning to understand why Pam Geller refers to the MSM as the Enemydia.