Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Child Robbed At Gunpoint In Crown Heights


    For the second time in about a week, a 10 year old kid has been robbed in Crown Heights. In the first case, which occurred on November 25, a boy was coming home from yeshiva and was approached by a man who was about 20 years of age who was riding a bicycle. The man asked the boy for the time and when the boy said he didn't have the time then demanded his knapsack. In the course of the incident, the man then fled on his bicycle with the boy's knapsack, running him over and causing some injuries as he did so.

The second incident was a good deal more serious. A 10 year old boy was grabbed from behind by an unidentified assailant in front of the laundromat in front of the laundromat at Troy Avenue and Crown Street. Crown Heights.Info described the incident as follows.

"The terrifying incident took place at around 4:15pm in front of the Laundromat on Crown street and Troy Avenue, where the boy was suddenly grabbed from behind and was told calmly “don’t scream, I have a gun…” and the mugger pressed a hard object into his back “…can you feel it?” paralyzed with fear the boy nodded, “hand over your phone, and then keep walking away calmly and do not yell, if you do I will shoot you.” And the mugger ran off."

This is the second crime against a minor in less than a week. Being threatened with a gun is a traumatising experience. Crown Heights.Info should be applauded for highlighting these incidents, because all too often, violent crimes in Crown Heights have been classified out of existence. How this gunpoint robbery and the earlier bicycle attack will be handled by police depends in good part on how they are classified. Too many Crown Heights residents have been stonewalled when attempting to simply get a complaint number for a crime committed against them. Too many times, crimes get "dumbed down" to minor offenses.

A possible solution to this would be for Crown Heights residents to register their complaints not only with police but to share the same information with a civilian, non governmental organization that would check police records to assure that the crime was recorded correctly and that the police report was not "lost" or misclassified as something trivial. This could be a function of a civilian patrol or a community group.

Crime hurts everyone here in our community. Despite the fact that the last two incidents were "black on white" does not negate the fact that many African Americans and Hispanics in our community have been victimised as well. The war on crime should bring us together, not set us against each other. No child in our community should fear walking to or from school. And that is why all of us who live in Crown Heights must take the  latest incidents seriously. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, November 26, 2010

Classic Banned German Cigarette Cartoon Ads

   In America, back in the days when we had cigarette ads on television, you could even find Fred Flintstone selling Winston cigarettes. How many people were conditioned from an early age to smoke by seeing their favourite cartoon hero lighting up a Winston? Banning those ads was a good idea.

In Germany, there was a cartoon character named "HB Mannchen" (Little HB man") who from 1957 to 1984 used to get into comically stressful situations and find relief with a cigarette. conveniently for the producers of HB cigarettes, it was always an HB cigarette that calmed the HB man down. "HB Mannchen" commercials ran from 1957 to 1984, although at the end of their run, they only appeared in movie theatres. They reinforced the idea that you reached for a cigarette to calm your nerves, a notion that makes sense only if you are addicted to nicotine.

The idea of using cartoons to push tobacco is awful. Despite that, these ads are classic. Advertising is a battle for the mind of the consumer, and I always enjoy seeing how such battles are waged. "HB Man is a classic of this genre. Here are a few of the ads.

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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Update On Globe Tribune.Info


  My new site, Globe Tribune.Info is being developed. Far from being an inactive or abandoned project, I am working actively on user friendly design with simple graphics. Unlike my past attempts at publishing, the content will be hosted on Globe Tribune.Info rather than having GlobeTribune.Info simply forward to the Blogger web site. The new site will look far more professional than the current page. Until the new site is fully operative, here is a link to the old site.

Click Here Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Iraqi Mandaean Survival Endangered By Dispersion


One of the casualties of the war in Iraq has been the presence of the Mandaean community in Iraq. The Mandaeans are a gnostic, monotheistic religion that venerates John the Baptist and prohibits circumcision. They are completely pacifist and do not accept converts. The only way to become a Mandaean is to be born to two Mandaean parents.

Mandaean faith is not only individual and familial but communal. They require running water for their weekly baptism rituals and access to Mandaean clergy. In the course of the war in Iraq and because of persecution in Iran, 60,000 Mandaeans have fled Iran and Iraq in recent years. Lack of education in their faith has resulted in the decline of Mandaeanism in exile. The older generation that grew up in Iraq fears that they may be the last generation to practice the faith.

Getting one nation to accept a bloc of refugees from one ethnic group is difficult. Boston.com quotesVincent Cochetel, who represents the UN High Commisioner for refugees explained the problem as follows.

"It makes sense to keep them together, but no one nation can provide them with effective protection," said Cochetel, who represents the U.S. and the Caribbean for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees. "Nations also have to take into consideration affordable housing available. That's just the social reality."

That may well be the case, but Mandaeans seem to be very good low risk candidates to accept as refugees. They are pacifists, they do not proselytise and have an attitude of extending charity to Mandaean and non Mandaean alike.

The largest community of Mandaeans in the US is the greater Boston area with about 450 of them.It would be good for the various countries that have taken in Mandaeans to work with the Mandaean leadership to at least settle groups of Mandaeans in close enough proximity that they can easily maintain regular contact. The Mandaeans have endured terrible trauma as a community since the start of the war in Iraq. It is not hard to understand their desire to survive as a community. We should try to work with them on this issue.

Photo by Max Becherer Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Today's Jewish Song of The Day

The Abayaudaya are a group of Ugandans who started practicing Judaism as they understood it around 1919 under the leadership of Semei Kakungulu and evolved into a full fledged community that made contact with Jews elsewhere in the world. Eventually they went through a conversion under non orthodox supervision, creating divisive issues in Jewish law. Whatever those issues might be, they suffered terribly for their faith, enduring murderous attacks and forced conversions to Christianity and Islam. I admire them greatly for their steadfastness in faith. My Article back in 2009 cites source material about them. Click here to read about and listen to the Abayudaya.

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Announcement To Readers About My New Web Site


  After almost 3 years of publishing Rudi Stettner and Magdeburger Joe, I am as enthusiastic as ever about writing, both on my own sites and elsewhere. The growth of Rudistettner.com and Magdeburgerjoe.com has been limited by my choice of names that sound more like personal blogs than like news sites. Additionally, I am not able to generate by myself the quantity and quality needed to pull in a larger readership.

I am in the process of creating a site that will have a name that will sound like and will in fact be a news and commentary site. In addition to my own articles, I will introduce my readership to news and opinions that I feel deserve more attention. I will NOT lift articles, but will introduce them and link over to them. I want to get paid for what I write, and I will assist others in doing so as well.

I am starting off on a shoestring budget, learning and making plenty of mistakes as I go along. I hope to grow by redesigning my site and getting more band width on an "as needed" basis. There is a lot to learn. I am not a technical person, but I have been forced to address technical questions as I get this new project off the ground.

Every site owner has his or her own priorities. My new site will be a mix of the popular, mainstream topics and some of my private interests, ranging from the serious to the frivolous. I like Quebec rock music, endangered languages and crazy looking exotic animals. I also worry about persecuted religious groups such as Coptic Christians and the Mandaeans. I could not care less about which drunken starlet barfed in the back of her limo or broke up withhis or her significant other. It's a big world out there. I have my priorities, and so will my new site. There are times when I like to be recklessly indifferent to popular tastes. On my own web site I will be free to be "offbeat" whenever I choose.

If there is one thing I learned from my communist days, it is that there is no such thing as "straight news, because the choice of news is itself a political statement. I try to be straight forward about my own biases, so readers can weigh my bias in evaluating my articles.

I don't even pretend to be open minded. My opinions have shifted at times with glacial slowness. Part of what has on rare occasion shifted my world view is getting trounced in debate and in personal experience. There is a constant tension and dialogue in my life between what I believe and what I see. This tension is what drives my writing.

I have a name picked out for my new site, as well as a url. The only reason I am not revealing either one is because the site is still under construction. By the end of the week, I hope to have the site up and running with graphics that are not laughably awful.I am looking forward to this new chapter in my professional life.

The ability of every human being to publish words that can be heard around the world is profoundly revolutionary. I have gotten hits from Kigali to Hanoi, from Santiago de Chile to China. Who could have imagined such a thing when I was a child? Like millions of people, I see a collective vision of the world that is projected into my living room that is distorted at best, and quite possibly harmful. In our time, I have the possibility to raise my voice in dissent. And that what I am doing.

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Saturday, November 13, 2010

Top 10 Famous Presidential Campaign Ads [Videos]

As we count down to 2012, it's a pleasure to look at old campaign ads from days gone by. Here are some of my favourites.

1. The Willie Horton ad ran in 1988 and compared George Bush the elder to Michael Dukakis. It featured a murderer who on furlough stabbed a man and raped his female companion. The Bush campaign was accused of subliminal racism.

2.Lyndon Johnson "Daisy Ad" in 1964. This ad claimed that Barry Goldwater would plungethe world into nuclear war. It showed a little girl counting daisies and a nuclear bomb going off. It was very jarring.

3. Nixon's "Checkers speech". When Richard Nixon was running for Vice President with Dwight David Eisenhower in 1952. Accused of political improprieties, Nixon gave a nationally televised speech in which he defended his integrity. Admitting to receiving a dog "Checkers" as a gift, he vowed to keep the dog. This part of the speech gave the speech,(lauded by some as brilliant and slammed by others as corny and manipulative)its name.

4.Kennedy 1960. This ad shows a different style than we are used to. The graphics and the 60 second song are totally unlike today's ads.

5.Eisenhower for President, 1952. An animated 1 minute commercial from the earliest days of television.

6.George Wallace ran for President in 1968 as an opponent of forced busing and a law and order candidate.

7. Jimmy Carter 1976. I never thought that anyone could bore me in 3o seconds. Hats off to Jimmy Carter for this rare achievement.

8. Barry Goldwater ran in 1964 on the slogan "In your heart, you know he's right. Johnson supporters shot back with "In your guts you know he's nuts. Cute. Goldwater was of course buried in a landslide by Johnson.

9. Anti Obama 2008. Sometimes you just have to attack your opponent. This ad, using Obama's "Yes We Can" slogan does a great job.

10. The following video quotes negative campaign statements back in the days before radio and television. It quotes iconic greats such as Thomas jefferson and John Adams. Our negative campaigns couldn't hold a candle to these guys. Priceless... Ah those were the days.

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Barack Obama In Jakarta and Gaza: Lookin' For Love In all The Wrong Places

After the spanking the Democrats got at the polls, President Obama must have wanted to get as far away as possible from an electorate that just doesn't understand him. In Jakarta and in Gaza, the Muslim masses were reportedly far more appreciative of Obama than the American people seem to be.

The New York Post's Amir Taheri reports as follows on the state of hope for change and the hunger for a" final solution" to the "Jewish question" emanating from Obama's fan club in the Gaza Strip.

"Abu Hussain! Palestine loves you!!!" This slogan, in English, appears on a poster and other products produced by the Palestinian Hamas movement and put on sale in Gaza. Yesterday, it adorned the front pages of several leading Arab dailies. The "Abu Hussain" is President Obama. The poster pictures him wearing the signature Arab headgear, the kaffiyeh. That the most radical Palestinian faction has declared its love for the president may be bad news for the stalled Middle East peace talks, which Obama has promised to help restart before the end of the year."

The aim of Hamas is, a Palestinian state comprising what is now Israel and the Palestine Authority. They want an Islamic state of "Palestine" and subservient second class citizenship for any Jews allowed to remain within the borders of their proposed country. Their aims are clearly stated over their radio and television stations and eagerly ignored by the Europeans and the US State Department who practically plead for Hamas and Fatah to lie in English long enough for some sound bites on the evening news.

This Palestinian state is not awaited with fondness by the hundreds of thousands of Arab Jews living in Israel, who were forced to flee the homes they had lived in in Arab countries for centuries. These are people who are abundantly familiar with the lot of non Muslims in an Islamic state.It is virtually certain that President Obama will declare his undying love for Israel when he returns to the US. There are plenty of people left in America who will practically beg Obama to lie to them about his vision for Israel.

"Tell me you love me, even if you don't mean it". seems to be the plea of American Democrats who try with increasing difficulty to juggle their loyalty to Obama and their support for Israel. The charade is getting more difficult by the day.

Who understands Obama correctly? Do the Arabs of Gaza with "Abu Hussein Obama coffee mugs know something that Americans do not?? Is Obama playing Gaza's Arabs for fools? What will the Arabs living in the Palestine Authority demand as a concrete token of Obama's sincerity, and what violence will erupt when they lose patience with him?

The Turks and the British wanted the Holy Land to be the crown jewel of their respective empires. Many nations have come to the Holy Land and left defeated. Does Obama have a scheme? Does he have a dream? Or is he just a dreamer?

If I had to guess, I would say that the far off, visionary look in Obama's eyes is focused not on the future but on the soothing, numbing light of the teleprompter that seems to be his perpetual companion. Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Democrats To Pelosi: "Step Aside!"

Nancy Pelosi has been asked in strong language to step aside and let someone else serve as Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, according to a letter obtained by Fox News, which reportedly read in part as follows.

Many of us want the chance to run again and reclaim the seats that we lost on Tuesday. With you as the leader of House Democrats, the hangover of 2010 stands no chance of subsiding. Many of us have run our last race but remain committed to our party; we want to help recruit successful candidates to run in our stead. Unfortunately, we fear that Republicans will further demonize you, and in so doing they will scare potential candidates out. The prospect of having to run against their own party leadership in addition to their Republican opponent is simply too daunting."

Unfortunately for the Democrats, Nancy Pelosi put a face on the Democratic Party that was easy to demonize. Her attitude was one of unsurpassed arrogance.

"Vote for the health care bill so you can find out what's in it." sounded like a three card monty game. She showed no respect for the good will and patriotism of her opponents. There are a lot of Democrats who want a living wage, a decent chance for working people of buying a home and a solid industrial base in the US who don't buy into abortion on demand, same sex marriage and a lot of other cultural baggage taken on by the Democrats.

I would like to see the Democratic Party that my parents supported, a party that would not plunge a religious Christian or an orthodox Jew into a crisis of faith about voting for it.

There is a real need for a Democratic Party that is pro civil rights without being pro affirmative action, a party that does not embrace a secular humanist agenda. Pelosi prsonifies the "We know what's good for you" attitude.

I voted straight Republican with no exceptions, yet I have grave reservations about the Republican party's empathy with working people. I am waiting for the Democratic Party to come to its senses. And I don't think that will happen unde Nancy Pelosi.


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Monday, November 8, 2010

Sex Switch Con Wants State To Foot Bills

Robert "Michelle" Kosilek, 61 is serving life in Prison in Massachusetts for murdering his wife, Cheryl, back in 1990. Since getting life in prison, he has decided that he is a changed man, or more pointedly, a changed woman. Miffed at the unsightliness of five o'clock shadow, Kosilek is suing the Department of Correction in Massachusetts to pay for electrolysis and a sex change operation. Kosilek has been chasing his dream of surgically attained womanhood since 10 years ago. UPI reports as follows on Kosilek's travails.

"Kosilek has been waiting 10 years for a decision on his sex-change suit and says in court filings he has attempted both suicide and self-castration in despair and "has informed the court that in her view the record is closed and she's ready for a decision," said Kosilek's attorney, Frances Cohen."

The prison authorities feel that their offer of regular makeovers and allowing twice a day shaving opportunities should suffice for Kosilek.

It's amazing that the court system in Massachusetts is wasting its time entertaining Kosilek's dreams of womanhood when he cut down the womanhood of his wife as cruelly as he did. Massachusetts would do far better to protect its prison population from rape and violence. This case is a foolish distraction from real problems in the prison system.

Kosilek should have his case thrown out of court and be charged the costs of his frivolous litigation. The prisons have a serious obligation to protect prisoners from harm and to safeguard their physical health. This should not include paying for sex change operations.


http://www.salon.com/news/feature/1999/0... Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Facebook Threatening "Lamebook" With Legal Action

I never would have heard of Lamebook, which is a web site that culls the most ridiculous and funny Facebook entries for the entertainment of its readership. Angie Rentmeester of Indyposted.com describes the dispute as follows.

On Lamebook users can submit the most ridiculous status updates and images from Facebook. On its website, the company wrote that it is “fending off threats of trademark infringement litigations from the multi-billion dollar giant by preemptively filing suit” in Texas.

To give you an example of the types of entries that are posted, consider the following.

I am Hungary.
Luisa: Maybe you should Czech the fridge.

Amanda: I am Russian to the kitchen.

Some entries are x rated and deal with relationships.

Then there is a religion section. One entry said "My uncle loved his neighbor and he got shot. Some of the other entries are closer to x rated.

Then it has a section for typos in which one woman said she was finished "raping her christmas presents.".

Douglaus had a "bowel full of candy" for Halloween. Yuck !!

Someone decided to go over Facebook and cull some humour from it. There are satires all the time. I have seen a takeoff of the Wall Street Journal and the Jewish Press. They were both funny, and nobody got sued. Scotch Tape and Xerox were originally brand names that became bona fide words in the English language. I think that Facebook should feel flattered that they are getting all the attention, get a life and get back to counting the big bucks they already have rolling in.

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