Saturday, December 13, 2008

Still Life with Modern Icons

David Ligare - Still Life with Burgers, Fries and Apple

I have always admired the still life genre. The form has changed little over the centuries and continues to be a staple in art and remains extraordinarily difficult to construct a really good and memorable image. This is one of those.

h/t orangeguru at Ultraorange

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ayatollahs vs FA-18

Commercial aircraft flying into Iranian airspace communicate with not only with the local Air Traffic Control facility when in the Persian Gulf AOR, but also with the Iranian Defense Radar giving the Persian military a ten minute warning. The pilot is required to give their call sign, transponder code, type aircraft, and points of origin and destination.

This story is relayed by Michael Ledeen in a Pajamas Media article and a h/t to Bookworm. One of his regular correspondents wrote that he had flown
with a guy who overheard this conversation on the VHF Guard (emergency) frequency 121.5 MHz while flying from Europe to Dubai. It’s too good not to pass along. The conversation went something like this…

Iranian Air Defense Radar: ‘Unknown aircraft at (location unknown), you are in Iranian airspace. Identify yourself.’

Aircraft: ‘This is a United States aircraft. I am in Iraqi airspace.’

Air Defense Radar: ‘ You are in Iranian airspace. If you do not depart our airspace we will launch interceptor aircraft!’

Aircraft: ‘This is a United States Marine Corps FA-18 fighter. Send ‘em up, I’ll wait!’

Air Defense Radar: (no response … total silence).
This is one of those stories you just hope is true and if it isn't no one says anything.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Obama Goombah Review

Going through our lives, we all meet many, many people. Most of the people we meet are decent hard working types who would feel guilt if they jaywalked. Some of the people we meet are on shaky ground, but are essentially good folk. A few of the people we meet are truly bad people, criminals at heart who may or may not have committed a crime, but we are always on guard around them.

Then there are folks like Barack Obama who has, it seems, a special talent for finding and befriending truly unsavory personages. For years, Obama and these people were close friends. Then they were exposed as the scum they truly are, and Obama disowned each and every one claiming the person exposed was not the person he had known for twenty years.

Questionable associations of Obama
By The Associated Press,
San Jose Mercury News

In his life and career in Illinois, President-elect Barack Obama has crossed paths with some notable figures who have drawn scorn and scrutiny. Among them:

GOV. ROD BLAGOJEVICH: Obama has maintained a cordial but distant relationship with Blagojevich during the governor's tenure.

He has complimented Blagojevich for running "a sound administration" with "the right priorities." He supported his fellow Democrat for re-election in 2006, even though the governor backed someone else over Obama in the U.S. Senate Democratic primary.

Obama's circle of major Illinois political allies and supporters is largely separate from Blagojevich's, with two major exceptions. Both Obama and Blagojevich got extensive money and support from Chicago businessman Antoin "Tony" Rezko. At least one top aide to Obama, Michael Strautmanis, previously worked for Blagojevich.

But Blagojevich's disdain for Obama was clear in court documents released Tuesday after the Illinois governor was arrested. Blagojevich, accused by federal prosecutors of conspiring to sell or trade for personal benefits the Senate seat left vacant by Obama, was overheard complaining at one point that Obama's people are "not going to give me anything except appreciation." He added: "(Expletive) them."

Obama said Tuesday, "I had no contact with the governor or his office, and so I was not aware of what was happening."

ANTOIN REZKO: "Tony" Rezko, who raised money for the campaigns of both Obama and Blagojevich, is awaiting sentencing after being convicted in June on charges of using clout with Blagojevich's administration to help launch a $7 million kickback scheme.

The charges have no connection to Obama, but Rezko is tied to the Illinois senator in other ways.

Rezko and his family donated at least $21,457 to Obama and helped raise over $200,000 more, though not for his presidential bid. He also advised Obama on the purchase of a new Chicago home and, in his wife's name, purchased a vacant lot next door to the new Obama home when the seller wanted to dispose of both properties at the same time. Rezko then sold a slice of the property to Obama.

Obama has donated Rezko's contributions to charity and says it was a mistake to work with Rezko on buying the house.

JEREMIAH WRIGHT: Wright was Obama's minister for 20 years. He helped Obama embrace Christianity, performed Obama's marriage, and baptized Obama and his two daughters.

Wright was known for thundering "God Damn America" in clips that dominated cable television news programs for weeks last spring. Wright accused the government of creating AIDS.

Obama has done his best to distance himself from his former minister, to the point of resigning from the church that Wright once led.

Wright's comments were a stumbling block for Obama's campaign. In an impassioned speech about faith and race, the Democrat at first expressed support for Wright, saying that "I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother."

But six weeks later during a speech at the National Press Club, Wright offered eyebrow-raising opinions about the U.S. government, praised Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan and hinted that Obama was distancing himself from the pastor for political expediency.

The next day, Obama said he was outraged and denounced Wright's remarks.

WILLIAM AYERS: Today, Ayers is a university professor and a member of Chicago's intellectual establishment. Forty years ago he was a member of the Weather Underground, a radical group that claimed responsibility for a series of bombings, including nonfatal explosions at the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol.

Ayers was a fugitive for years with his wife, fellow radical Bernadine Dohrn. But after surrendering in 1980, the charges against Ayers were dropped because of prosecutorial misconduct.

Obama had a very limited relationship with Ayers, who lives in the same neighborhood. They served together on the board of a Chicago charity, and in the mid-1990s when Obama first ran for office, Ayers hosted a meet-the-candidate session for Obama at his home.

Ayers was front and center in GOP claims that Obama was "palling around with terrorists," as Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin put it.

Obama has condemned Ayers' radical activities, and there's no evidence they ever were close friends or that Ayers advised Obama on policy.

Ayers said in November that he hardly knew Obama. "I think my relationship with Obama was probably like thousands of others in Chicago. And, like millions and millions of others, I wish I knew him better," Ayers said in a newspaper interview.

EMIL JONES: Jones, the president of the Illinois Senate, amounts to Obama's political godfather and was an important part of Obama's longshot victory for U.S. Senate in 2004. He helped the little-known politician meet the right people, and he picked Obama to handle high-profile legislation during the two years leading up to the election.

But Jones' political style is very different from Obama's.

Jones is known for steering state money to a few favored institutions, including some that employ his relatives. Several of his relatives have gotten state jobs, and his wife's government salary jumped 60 percent after he became Senate president. He has played an important role in blocking ethics legislation in Illinois.

When Jones announced last summer that he would retire from the Illinois Senate when his term ends in January, an Obama campaign spokesman said "Jones has been a passionate advocate who has fought for working families and the underprivileged."

Jones was considered a possible successor to Obama in the Senate.

RASHID KHALIDI: Khalidi is a scholar and author on Middle Eastern affairs who has criticized Israeli policies and was part of a Palestinian advisory panel to peace talks in the early 1990s.

He's also a friend of Obama.

They met while both were teaching at the University of Chicago and living in the same neighborhood. Obama and his wife, Michelle, sometimes had dinner with Khalidi and his wife, Mona. The Khalidis hosted a political fundraiser for Obama in 2000, and the Woods Fund charity gave money to the Arab-American Action Network, run by Mona Khalidi, while Obama served on the charity's board.

Khalidi and Obama have both said they hold very different opinions on Israeli issues, but their friendship has been used to raise questions about Obama's support for Israel — and to generate Internet headlines such as "Meet Obama's Terrorist Friend."

Late in the 2008 presidential campaign, the Republican nominee, John McCain, and Palin criticized Obama for attending a 2003 party for Khalidi. Obama's campaign dismissed the complaints, saying Khalidi was not an adviser to him and that Obama does not share Khalidi's views.

MICHAEL PFLEGER: Pfleger, a Roman Catholic priest in Chicago, has been known as a firebrand for years. He has protested over a wide range of issues, including gun shops and Jerry Springer. Obama has referred to him as a spiritual adviser.

Last spring, Pfleger visited Obama's church and preached a sermon in which he mocked Hillary Rodham Clinton and accused her of expecting to win the presidential nomination because she was white. Pfleger apologized, but Obama condemned the remarks and resigned from the church.
I am far from being a socially adept person, but the number of criminals I have ever met is very few. For Barack Obama to have met, befriended, and maintained these friendships shows an incredible ineptitude in judging character.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

U.N. - 52, Skeptics - 650

United Nations scientists (oxymoron alert!) said today they have proven "beyond a doubt that global warming is real."

Last year, 52 scientists working for the U.N. declared that Global Warming is a clear and present danger to the existence of life on this planet as we know it. This year, over 650 scientists, some of whom once worked on the U.N. climate research project are saying the global warming theory is hogwash.

In the real world, snow is falling in Houston, Texas. Records dating back to when weather record keeping began in the U.S., 1895 show that snow has fallen this early in Houston only once before - Dec. 10, 1944. Six days later in the Ardennes Forest of France, the Battle of the Bulge began.

Next week here in Southern California, weather guys are predicting a once in 50 year event. Currently, there is a cold air mass (-81 degrees) over Siberia. That cold air mass is headed for California. The higher elevations are being advised of heavy snow fall and lower areas of freezing temperatures.

Speaking of Siberia, since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990, the number of world weather stations was reduced from 15,000 in 1970 to only 5,000 in 2000. Many of the lost weather stations were in Siberia which hosts some of the coldest spots on Earth, thus skewing the equations in favor of the weather stations still operating in some of the hottest places on Earth.

From the December 1-12 the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change is meeting in Poznan, Poland. The estimated 8,000 people expected to participate, and the 10,657 people who had registered as of Sunday, are estimated to spew about 13,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the Earth’s atmosphere adding to the so-called greenhouse effect which the conference is hell bent on reducing by taxing the rest of the world's population. ‘Save the planet! Ban warming summits!’13,000 tons of CO2 released for UN Conference - Andrew Bolt Blog - December 02, 2008.

Now, if that doesn't cheer your day, nothing will.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Muslims and the Words They Use

On the surface, it seems the West and Islam are speaking the same language when both parties speak English. In reality, the words often mean completely different things.

For example, Westerners generally believe and say it is wrong to kill innocents. With this Muslims will readily agree. But are we understanding the same thing? No, we are not. To Westerners, an innocent is one who is not involved in the situation in any way, such as children, and we go to great lengths not to harm children. At one point, Osama bin Laden was in our crosshairs, but their were children in the compound so the missile strike was aborted for ear of killing or harming the children. The unintended death of Muamar Qadaffi's adopted daughter during the Reagan Administration's F-111 raid on Lyba caused us to be very cautious with the lives of innocents. To the Muslim, an innocent is another Muslim. No one else. If a person is not an Islam adherent, that person is not innocent no matter their age.

There are many key words Westerners and Muslim share in conversation, but the meanings couldn't be any more divergent. Henry Kadoch provides the following guide to Islam-speak in, December 09, 2008.

An Islam-speak glossary:

Peace - The state of cessation of all resistance to Islam. Peace only exists when Islam rules politically and religiously, and all Islamic principles are established as the law of the land.

Freedom – Freedom exists when Islam and its principles attain complete dominance and constitute the entirety of religious belief and political rule.

Justice – The state when Sharia law is the law of the land, and all judicial decisions are based on it and it alone. Justice exists when non-Muslims have no standing before a court, and when the testimony of two Muslim women is equal to that of one Muslim man.

Equality – Equality is achieved when Muslims are the only leaders of society, and are given their rightful place as the best of men, leading all institutions, political and religious. This does not extend to non-Muslims or apostates.

Tolerance – The state when non-Muslims are properly subdued and subservient to Muslim rule, agree to their second-class Dhimmi status, and duly pay the Jizya to their Muslim overlords.

Truth – Truth is the accepted Islamic version of events, as laid out in the Koran and the Sunna. Anything beyond that is merely hearsay, and in many cases blasphemy. (see Lies).

Democracy – The state when Islam is the absolute law and religion, and all peoples conform to Islamic law and customs. (see Freedom).

Freedom of Speech – Freedom of speech is achieved when Muslims, and only Muslims, are free to espouse their beliefs, and non-Muslims are prohibited from commenting on or criticizing anything Islamic.

Just Society - A society ruled by Muslims under Islamic law.

Koran - Allah’s final word, perfect and un-altered, superseding all others and the true and only guide for mankind in religion, law and politics.

Oppression - The rule of a state by non-Islamic law; actions of resistance to implementation of Islamic law and Muslim rule.

Racism - The state where anything Islamic or any Muslim is criticized or rejected.

Infidel – Any and all non-Muslims. Subject only to conversion, subjugation, or death under Islamic law.

Slavery – The rightful and lawful status of any infidel captured in battle against Islam.

Treaty – A non-binding and temporary agreement between Muslims and non-Muslims, valid only until such time as the Muslims have the power to achieve by force or other means what they have momentarily failed to achieve.

Lies – The act of hiding the truth, permissible by Islamic law for a Muslim when in fear for his safety or when it advances the cause of Islam.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Ghost of Christmas Past

Nobody makes Poppyseed Rolls anymore. When I was a kid, Gramma made all kinds of cookies and pastries. Some of them were very odd, like the chocolate-chocolate chip cookies made with bacon fat, but oh-h-h-h, were they good. She was from England and that may explain it.

Grampa was from Hungary and although he came to America when he was 10 years old and promptly gave up Hungarian for English, he always liked the traditional sweets of the old world. Gramma often made a Poppyseed Roll for him and sometimes when we visited, she would have some. Always she would make a few rolls for Christmas.

Hungarian Poppyseed Roll (Makosh)

Extra-Rich Sweet Yeast Dough:
2 1/4-ounce packages (4-1/2 teaspoons) active dry yeast, or 2 .6-ounce cakes fresh yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F for dry yeast; 80°F to 85°F for fresh yeast), or 1/4 cup warm water and 1/4 cup warm milk, or 1/2 cup water mixed with 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup unsalted butter or margarine, softened
4 large eggs
1-1/2 teaspoon salt
About 4-1/4 cups flour

Egg Wash:
1 large egg yolk, beaten slightly
1 teaspoon water

3 cups (about 1 pound) poppy seeds (ground)
1-1/2 cups water
1-1/2 cup sugar or honey; or 1 cup honey and 1/3 cup light corn syrup
2-1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon juice
pinch of salt

Make Yeast Dough:
Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup of warm water (105°F to 110°F). Stir in one teaspoon sugar and let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes.

Add the remaining water, sugar, butter (or margarine), eggs, and salt. Blend in 1-1/2 cups flour. Add enough of the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, to make a workable dough.

On a lightly floured surface or in a mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough, adding more flour as needed to prevent sticking, until smooth and springy, about 5 minutes. Place in an oiled bowl, turning to coat. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until nearly double in bulk, 1-1/2 to 2 hours, or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (To test if the dough is sufficiently risen, press two fingers 1" deep into the center; if the indentation remain, the dough is ready) Also, you can refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days.

Punch down the dough. Fold over and press together several times (this redistributes the yeast and its food). Let stand for 10 minutes.

Make Filling and Assembly:
Grind the poppyseeds or have them ground at the grocery store. Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens, about 12 minutes. It should be thick and may take longer. Let cool. Store in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line several large baking sheets with parchment paper or grease them.

Divide the dough in half or thirds. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each piece into a very thin rectangle. (The thinner the dough, the thinner the cake layers.) Roll out each piece into a rectangle about 1/8" thick. Half will be about 15"x8" (thirds 10"x8"). Spread with the filling, leaving a 1/2" border along the edges. Starting from a long edge, roll up jelly roll style. Place on the prepared sheet. Baking without letting the cake rise produces thin alternating layers of pastry and filling. For slightly thicker cake layers, cover and let rise for about 40 minutes. Brush with egg wash.

Bake until lightly browned, about 35 minutes. Place the baking sheet on a wire rack to cool.
Warning: Do not eat any Poppyseed Roll 48 hours before a drug test. The results will show you to be a heroin addict.

Otherwise, eat as much as you want and enjoy.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Obama Citizenship Stands, Supremes Refuse to Hear Case

The Supreme Court has decided the Dononfrio case which challenged the citizenship of Barack Obama and his eligibility to hold the office of President of the United States of America.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has turned down an emergency appeal from a New Jersey man who says President-elect Barack Obama is ineligible to be president because he was a British subject at birth.

The court did not comment on its order Monday rejecting the call by Leo Donofrio of East Brunswick, N.J., to intervene in the presidential election. Donofrio says that since Obama had dual nationality at birth — his mother was American and his Kenyan father at the time was a British subject — he cannot possibly be a "natural born citizen," one of the requirements the Constitution lists for eligibility to be president.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Down in Brazil

Michael Franks

This my introduction to jazz.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.