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Thursday, 26 February 2009

A System Doomed to Failure

I don't want to overwhelm my readers with more than one post a day, but this one was just too good to pass up. Watch the CNBC anchors scramble for cover after an opening statement by Ron Paul in the House Financial Services Committee Hearing yesterday:

The White Man makes the Black List

This blog has a growing following--even attracting the attention of the US House of Representatives, the US Defense Department, and the ACLU, to name just a few of the organizations that have shown up on our site meter. And we just helped shut down a scam on Facebook. So we will do our best to keep producing posts of interest. And this blog will continue to offer both this poster and any commenters the opportunity to express themselves anonymously.

Why, you may ask, do we insist on anonymity? Well, let this article serve as an answer:

* * * * * *
Intimidating Critics of Islam
Politicians and citizens who raise questions about the religion are targeted.
By former Senator Rick Santorum
Posted: Thursday, February 12, 2009

Philadelphia Inquirer
Publication Date: February 12, 2009

We lost more than a million jobs in the past few months, the headlines remind us. So last month's story about a Dutch court's ruling that Geert Wilders was "inciting hatred and discrimination" - and that "it is in the public interest to prosecute" him - understandably didn't make the American news.

Did Wilders rip off a minority in a Madoff-style Ponzi scheme? No, he's a member of the Dutch parliament, and his precise villainy was releasing a 15-minute film. Entitled Fitna, it suggests a direct link between certain verses of the Koran and acts of terrorism.

Not to be outdone, the United Kingdom this week banned Wilders from entering the country. Its reasoning: His "presence in the U.K. would pose a genuine, present, and sufficiently serious threat to one of the fundamental interests of society." A letter from the home secretary went on to tell Wilders that "your statements about Muslims and their beliefs, as expressed in your film Fitna and elsewhere, would threaten community harmony and therefore public security."

In 2007, Cambridge University Press destroyed unsold copies of Alms for Jihad after it was sued by Khalid bin Mahfouz, a Saudi-Irish businessman whom the book accused of financing al-Qaeda. So much for academics standing up against book-burning.

In 2005, reporters from the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten were forced into hiding after publishing a series of 12 cartoons about Muhammad. Islamic fundamentalists found the images blasphemous and threatened to bomb the paper's offices and kill its cartoonists - apparently, in certain quarters, an alternative to a letter to the editor.

Last year, at the urging of the Canadian Islamic Congress, author Mark Steyn was forced to defend himself against charges of racism and "Islamophobia" that were filed with three Canadian human-rights commissions, based on his columns in Maclean's magazine.

And, following a 2008 U.N. resolution urging nations to outlaw "defamation of religion," several nations - including Italy, the Netherlands and France - are attempting to ban "hate speech" against religious groups.

All of these incidents are calculated to intimidate critics of Islam in Europe and across the West. The message in the European Union is clear: Politicians, religious figures, and even private citizens with religiously and politically incorrect opinions will be subject not only to Muslim protest, but to criminal prosecution and violent retribution.

* * * * * *

And yes, this blog has been displayed numerous times on computers located on the Arabian Peninsula. Enough said.

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

A new twist to an old scam

If you go to, you will see a photo of a bright young man in a tux, informing you that he is originally from your home town, but now he's a millionaire making his money by posting links on Google.

Don't you believe a word of it. Corey Peters is one big urban myth, and the swindler behind this website has figured out how to tap into your computer and identify the location of your web server in order to make you think that Corey's your homeboy. What he wants is your credit card number, and you're going to give it to him because you just can't believe that a nice guy from your home town is lying to you through his pearly white teeth. So what we need to establish right away is that he's not your homeboy, and he is a colossal liar. Here's how we'll do it:

This blog gets hits from every continent but Antarctica (and probably only because there's no ISP HQ'd there--but this post did incite one from north of the 72nd parallel), including a lot of viewers that do an excellent job of concealing their ISP; some are no more specific than the continent, and a rare few are even less so. I'd love to hear back from you as to where 'Corey' claimed to you that he's originally from. Just leave your comments below; and also please tell me whether or not you ran across Corey on Facebook.

Edited five hours later with the following revision: Come on, people. I'm getting hits on this post from several countries--probably at least one of them from Corey himself. Just to make it easy I've removed comment moderation to make it real easy to post comments (anyone who isn't a robot can participate). Please, tell me where Corey Peters told you he's from. And while you're at it, let me know what he's changed his name to this time. "Corey Peters" is less than a week into its run.

Added 2-26: Okay, folks, we can consider this project a success. A commenter alerted me to the following announcement posted to Facebook:

**Alert to Facebook Users**

You may have seen ads appearing on your FB profile in which a young man named Corey Peters or Mike Miller, and who claims to be from or near your home town, explains how he makes thousands of dollars posting links to websites. He claims that Google pays him to do this.

Some websites associated with this are:

An American blogger asked people to send him a note to tell him where Corey was telling them he was "from" in his ad.
The answers he got back... Bedford, MA... Montreal, Quebec... and New Delhi, India.
Either Corey is quite the globe-hopping guy, or he has great software which detects your ISP address and then adjusts the ad to reflect a better "connection" to you.

When you go to these sites, they will ask you for your credit card information to sign up for a "Google Cash Kit".

Here are some comments from ComplaintsBoard, an online site dedicated to exposing web scams:
"ppl sign up for a google money system kit and have a couple $100 charged on their credit account. emails to contact them bounce back, the kit doesn't come and by the sound of it, neither does the promised cheque
13 days ago by T.Khan
I also did the same, no confirmation or e-mails, no such log in website. I found the ad on facebook and thought it was reliable. I am just waiting to see what i can do if they end up attacking my credit card. Such scammers..."

Other commentators on the ComplaintBoard explain how difficult it was to get the Google Cash Kit subscription cancelled... and many, many cases of people having to cancel their credit cards in order to stop the monthly payments.


Official response from Google to an enquiry regarding

"Ads like these appear to be the latest iteration of a trend we have observed for some time. Our Legal team reviews them and takes appropriate action if necessary. As Google is not affiliated with these sites, though, we can't comment on individual claims. We recommend that users exercise the same amount of caution they would when evaluating other types of get rich quick claims."

Update March 21, 2009

Well, this post continues to get dozens of hits a day--including one recently from Google Inc., so let's hope they do something about it. In any case, today I did something I'm not ever supposed to do--I actually read one of the ads that I've allowed Google to post on this blog. Boy, was I ever surprized to read a corey-peters type scam from being advertized right on my blog! Supposedly Google will cancel my Adsense account for doing this, but I'm going to cancel it anyway, maugre the money I'll be out for doing so. I refuse to participate in these sort of scams. Just look at the fine print for this "free trial offer:"

You have 14-days from the date that your order ships to use the product and evaluate the results. If you enjoy the system, simply do nothing. You will be billed the low price of $78.93 at the end of your 14-day trial period. Additionally, you will be automatically enrolled in the AlwaysBright™ Membership Program and every 30 days from your trial signup, you will receive a new 30-day supply of Bright Teeth™ Whitening Gel (10cc) and Remineralization Gel (3cc) at the low price of $80.93, plus $4.99 shipping and handling, totalling $85.92. . .

It goes on to say as much as that unless you cancel your credit or debit card, these charges will go on indefinitely. Because of course, you'll never be able to get through on their toll-free line, with thousands of other people from Pond Inlet to New Delhi all trying to cancel too.

Well, thanks to corey peters, I've gotten more hits in less than a month than I typically got in a year. But in the end, by participating in such scams, Google Inc. lost my Adsense business. And, I expect, unless they face the music soon, that of a lot of other bloggers as well.

There are ways to make money, and there are ways to take money. This is clearly one of the latter, and I will have none of it.

Update 3/23/09
To the kind folks at Google, Inc., who frequently check this post for new comments:
1) Thanks for deleting my Adsense account. You can keep the change.
2) I'm sorry I'm not able to keep up on approving comments as fast as they come in. I trust, however, that you've seen enough by now to get the picture. So I think I'll be taking this post down again; I could use a break from this issue for a while. Unless you take decisive action, it's not going to go away.

Update 3/26/09 I'm taking this offline again. Way too many hits to handle!

Update:  2013: This post has finally fallen out of my 'top ten' so I'm bringing it back up.

Monday, 23 February 2009

Machine Guns in Police Cars--a threat to the saftey of inner-city neighborhoods?

"County Sheriff's Department is asking the public's help to locate a rifle stolen from a department patrol car.

The car was parked near an officer's home [a few blocks from the inner city of Elkhart]. The incident occurred between 11 p.m. Friday and 7:30 a.m. Saturday.


• A department-issued black Colt M16, a .223-caliber automatic rifle; serial number of 4459957.

• Four magazines of ammunition.

• Rechargeable flashlight.

Anyone with information about the incident or the stolen rifle should call (574) 533-4151 and ask to speak with an officer.

Off-duty weapons policy:

The Elkhart County Sheriff's Department requires officers to keep weapons secure while off-duty. If the officer does not have a garage at the residence, one of the allowed storage places is in the locked rack.

The officer's vehicle had both interior and exterior damage, including broken windows, and [the] locked rifle rack had been cut and removed from its mounting."

So, the wireless alarm systems installed on every machine gun mount can be circumvented!

Did it ever occur to these people that displaying such a choice weapon just a couple feet from the face of just about every criminal ever transported to the county jail probably wasn't a good way of deterring the theft thereof? Or that criminals are likely to find such a weapon far more useful than the county officers who carry them everywhere they drive?

I've been told that police officers considered large flashlights a weapon, but never realized that they fit into such an exalted category thereof.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Doctor has medical license pulled, but won't be charged with murder in death of patient

I don't usually report on stories like these, but this is one I stumbled upon and haven't seen anywhere else. This is big news on several fronts:

1) A legislative body instructing the executive branch to prosecute a case.
2) An abortion procedure that has all the hallmarks of murder: Premeditated, purposeful, clandestine disposal of the body, alteration of medical records.
3) The case has been pushed through by a combination of a lobbying firm and grass-roots action.
4) A doctor gets his medical license revoked for an abortion he never performed.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

The ACLU takes another nap

A protester at a public appearance by President Obama last week was threatened with arrest by local police.

Not because he was being belligerent (he wasn't, ever) or loud (he was, briefly). No, he was evicted from the public venue and threatened with arrest because the police didn't approve of the content of his speech (they told him so, twice).

An astonished bystander, documenting the confrontation, was also (twice) threatened with arrest if he didn't put his camera away.

This time, both suspects went out of their way to avoid arrest, and succeeded.

Not so much as a whimper was heard from that alleged watchdog of Civil Liberties, the ACLU (which organization, as it happens, used their computer system to display this blog post less than 24 hours after it was put up).

And alas, the sleeping news media took no note of the story--just another chapter in America's Loss of Civil Liberties. So, no story to link to this time. I wish my readers didn't, but they'll just have to rely on my second-hand version of the story.