Happy solstice.

What a swell Saturday we had. We celebrated Father’s Day on a noon Saturday-to-noon Sunday schedule, and Father wanted to go on a sunset sail, so that’s what we did. Hit the marina around 8:30 p.m. and away we went. Perfect breeze, perfect night, no mosquitos, not even many fish flies. We didn’t get back until close to 11 — too late for ice cream, but by then Kate was doing the zombie walk. I keep waiting for the much-advertised teenage circadian rhythms to kick in, but so far, no such thing. Her body clock wakes her around 7 most mornings and has her dragging by 9 p.m. She was born to collect eggs on a farm somewhere, preferably one with broadband internet access.

I’m running way short of time this morning, so let’s skip straight to the bloggage:

An interesting story from the Boston Globe magazine, with an irresistible headline: Inside the mind of an anonymous internet poster:

Certain topics never fail to generate a flood of impassioned reactions online: immigration, President Obama, federal taxes, “birthers,” and race. This story about Obama’s Kenyan aunt, who had been exposed as an illegal immigrant living in public housing in Boston and who was now seeking asylum, manages to pull strands from all five of those contentious subjects.

In the next few minutes, several equally innocuous posts follow, including a rare comment in favor of the judge’s decision. Then the name-calling begins. At 2:03 p.m., a commenter with the pseudonym of Craptulous calls the aunt, Zeituni Onyango, a “foreign free-loader.” Seconds later comes the lament from Redzone 300: “Just another reason to hate are [sic] corrupt government.”

Of course, come the Rapture, you’ll be floating in the sky, en route to Heaven. But what about your pet? Who will feed your cat?

And now, I must splutter: I can’t believe how far behind I am, and the week has barely begun. Here, have a picture, and I’ll be back later:

Posted at 9:51 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

50 responses to “Happy solstice.”

  1. Colleen said on June 21, 2010 at 10:27 am

    Great picture!

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  2. Deborah said on June 21, 2010 at 10:45 am

    I’ll admit I’m always looking at the world from the glass is half empty perspective, so here’s a bummer for you: the summer solstice means that the days will start getting shorter from now until Dec 21 when night will fall at about 4:30 pm. Have a “happy” Monday.

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  3. brian stouder said on June 21, 2010 at 10:47 am

    I’m just into the last 80 pages of David McCullough’s “The Path Between the Seas”, about the Panama canal – and of course Teddy Roosevelt has now taken over the narrative (more or less). So just in the past day I read HG Wells’ impression of TR as the classic “man with the sun in his eyes” – and this photo captures that same essential thing. Looks like a marvelous way to navigate to the end of an early summer day

    (and I still love that word “splutter”)

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  4. adrianne said on June 21, 2010 at 11:03 am

    Alan is perfecting his nonchalant, Kennedyesque look at the rudder (or whatever he’s steering).

    BTW, your mojito recipe was perfection! David and I each had one, then moved on to O’Reilly’s pinot noir with Father’s Day dinner. Now I have all this simple syrup to burn – maybe I’ll whip up some daquiris with fresh New York strawberries.

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  5. ROgirl said on June 21, 2010 at 11:06 am

    So the Rapture believers don’t have any problem with leaving Fluffy in the hands of those who have been left behind? Isn’t that a tacit acknowledgement that existence will go on as before? I’m not up on the whole belief system behind it, but it sounds as if they’re just trying to placate their sense of guilt in leaving a beloved pet in the evil, sinning world while they float off to paradise.

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  6. Sue said on June 21, 2010 at 11:20 am

    Love those ATR products: the After the Rapture Cat in Window Mousepads, the ATR maternity tshirts, the coffee mugs and stickers. Here’s my favorite quote, from a FAQ about the confusion after all the Christians have flown up to heaven: “As far as the data about all registered pets, it is located on Google servers (the most secure servers in the world) as well as our own server in Lansing, Michigan (away from political and military hot spots to minimize chance of destruction if there is a post-Rapture war).” These people have thought of everything.
    And Deborah, people don’t understand why I’m always sad on the first day of summer and happy-happy-happy on the first day of winter.

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  7. jcburns said on June 21, 2010 at 11:25 am

    Oh no! All the water in Lake St. Clair is pouring out of the left of the picture! Oh, wait, that’s just An Arty Sailing Angle. Great colors.

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  8. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 11:26 am

    I know dachshunds and that dachshund would not be gazing up at those folks floating away. It would be yapping its head off.
    I know California is notorious for loons, but Michigan seems to generate more than its fair share, religious, vigilante and general. We have Orly Taitz who counts as three or four since she’s a dentist/real estate agent/lawyer loon.
    Oh, and you can still get that teenage sleep schedule thing. Son Pete was always the early bird until about three months ago. He’s sixteen. Unless I drag him out of bed he sleeps until noon.

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  9. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 11:27 am

    The only “rapture” we’re ever going to see or hear is the Blondie song.

    I do admire the smug certainty of the rapturees. A popular bumper sticker when I lived in Charlotte read, “In case of rapture, this car will be empty.” I’d say that is mighty hubristic, but then, I am a church-eschewing, hedonistic heathen who finds the Old Testament a very sadistic read, so what do I know?

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  10. coozledad said on June 21, 2010 at 11:34 am

    Given the people who actually believe there’s a heaven, and they’re bound for it, I’ll take my chances with the naked demons wrestling in lava. Who wants to spend eternity at a goddamn Denny’s listening to grandma bitch about the Bac-o’s bin at the salad bar being empty?
    Hit me with that fork again, Lilith!

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  11. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 11:38 am

    The Old Testament is a source for so many great quotes. My very fundie co-worker was ordering a varsity jacket for her son, who is a multi-sport jock at a very fundie high school. He was supposed to choose a bible verse to have embroidered on his jacket. I suggested Song of Solomon 7:2.
    Thy navel is like a round goblet, which wanteth not liquor: thy belly is like an heap of wheat set about with lilies.
    Works for me. I think he (she) chose something more along the lines of being a warrior for Christ or something. It incorporated battle and Jesus.

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  12. Colleen said on June 21, 2010 at 11:44 am

    Oh Deborah! Thank goodness I’m not the only one. Since it’s the first day of summer and all, I try not to whine about it, but yeah, I am always a little bummed because the days will be getting shorter now…..

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  13. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 11:44 am

    I cannot recall who has made the arguments about the differences between the Old and New Testaments. Might’ve been a comedian? But the catalog of horrors in the Old Testament including the frequents “tests” God makes his followers take is genuinely creepy. Sheesh, there’s Job who loves his God with all his heart and soul, but that’s not enough, so God has to take away everything he owns and loves, then afflicts him with leprosy, just to make sure his faith is real. The “Saw” films, often described as “torture porn,” look like “The Sound of Music” when juxtaposed with the O.T.

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  14. Peter said on June 21, 2010 at 11:49 am

    Cooz, in my version of heaven, that Baco’s bin is NEVER empty.

    Of course, as a Catholic, I’m pretty sure I’ll end up in Purgatory for a really extended stretch.

    LA Mary, one of my favorite bible verses is from the New Testament, where Jesus is going to jump start Lazarus: “Surely, Lord, there will be a stench!”. I can’t wait for the new bible version where the next verse is: “And Jesus replied: ‘You think?'”

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  15. 4dbirds said on June 21, 2010 at 11:51 am

    I heard a good one on the awful Cleveland show last night. After finding out the cost of something he ordered, Cleveland tells the vendor, “UH, I’ll have to pray on that and get back to you”. Love it, that’s my new line now when I don’t want to say no.

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  16. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 11:59 am

    Speaking of praying, SheWho twittered about a Gulf region day of prayer for divine intervention in the capping of the Deepwater Horizon leak. I guess that’s part of her energy policy: keep drilling and if something bad happens, pray for God’s intervention. Apparently, that was BP’s policy, too.

    4dbirds, I love that line and also plan on appropriating it whenever and wherever possible. Thanks for sharing.

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  17. Sue said on June 21, 2010 at 12:10 pm

    Jeff Borden: God’s intervention? Well, let’s look at this. The best engineering minds try fix after fix and nothing works. Things that should work don’t. Other things break at the worst times.
    If you ask me, Someone is trying to say something, but nobody’s listening. Short of a couple of stone tablets falling from the sky and hitting Nancy Pelosi, or cloud formations spelling out “Listen,you idiots…”, this isn’t going to be interpreted as anything God-related, but it sure looks funny. Now whether by funny you mean “God hates gays” or “God wants a hell of a lot more government regulation”, that depends on how you voted in 2008.

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  18. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 12:31 pm

    I’m not sure I agree with your assessment, though I appreciate your sentiments. My sense of the Creator was that He/She created on this planet all that was necessary for humankind to not only survive, but thrive. And whether you are deeply religious or an atheist, you ought to be able to admit that humankind has not been a very good steward of this beautiful planet. We’re hardly the first generation to behave in a rapacious manner, though we seem to have quickened the pace.

    A book about the search for the ebola virus called “The Hot Zone” contained a theory that the earth is a living organism that periodically purges the parasites afflicting its health, which would be us. It’s an interesting theory when you are looking at the black plague,the Spanish flu or the massive volcanic eruptions that have greatly diminished crop production over the centuries and condemned millions to starvation.

    The bottom line with BP and the spill is that we have outrun the technology needed to fix these deepwater rigs when they go bad. The petroleum industry knows how to drill but not how to cap. If we had tighter regulations or a more moral corporation (Hah!), these wells would not be sunk unless we knew what to do when they go bad. We have neither. In fact, BP is among the most craven of the petroleum producers in its sacrificing of safety measures for an enhanced bottom line. Jesus God, Halliburton of all companies acted more nobly in this disaster –they argued for 21 additional safety devices in the drill pipe while BP installed just six.

    I would argue the problem here is man’s hubris not God’s wrath.

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  19. Deborah said on June 21, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    Sue and Colleen, I shouldn’t complain, just think what it would be like in Dec/Jan if you lived in Finland. I was in Finland last summer from the beginning to middle of August and it was still light until about 11 pm, so there is an upside.

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  20. Sue said on June 21, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    Ah, yes, Wonkette as usual comes up with the best headline:
    Sarah Palin Begs Allah To Plug the Danged Hole

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  21. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    You know, whenever I lament that the O-man is not doing enough to satisfy my liberal jones, I consider what our nation would look like right now had John McCain and SheWho been elected. The crazy old uncle from Arizona would be bombing Iran and SheWho would be hosting pray-a-thons on the Gulf Coast.

    BTW, I read somewhere that Levi and Bristol were back in action together again. I’ll bet that makes for some interesting conversations when SheWho is whipping up a nice batch of moose chili.

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  22. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    I suspect Levi and Bristol are back together because they ran out of ways to make money from their history individually. As a team they can find a few more ways to generate revenue. Can’t you see the cover stories with the baby and gran?

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  23. Hattie said on June 21, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Will there be an Applebee’s in heaven?

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  24. coozledad said on June 21, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    Hattie: Perhaps this will answer your questions:

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  25. Dorothy said on June 21, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    Deborah and Colleen – we are triplets separated at birth! I was just saying last night that although I love the official start of summer, it means the days are now going to start getting shorter. Thank goodness it’s a slow process.

    Edited because I’m an idiot and didn’t read carefully: SUE too! The four of us should start some sort of club!

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  26. Scout said on June 21, 2010 at 3:29 pm

    From my perspective out here in crazy Arizoney, shorter days mean an earlier cool-down. I do love long days in other places, though. I remember watching the sunset from the Eiffel Tower at 10:00 pm in May! That was actually surreal.

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  27. Deborah said on June 21, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    Bristol and Levi, what happened to teen abstinence? These people are just so much hogwash.

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  28. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 3:44 pm


    Didn’t you hear? Bristol and Levi are retroactively virgins. You betcha!

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  29. Deborah said on June 21, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    One of the reports says Levi spends nights with Bristol now that she lives in Anchorage away from her Mom. Do you really think it’s in a separate bedroom or on the couch? If you do I’ve got a bridge to sell you.

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  30. Julie Robinson said on June 21, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    Add my name to the need-the-sun-club membership roles. The winter blues stalk me every year and even anti-depressants don’t help. The last few years I’ve been using a full spectrum happy light to get me through. It was very effective until this last winter, when even Christmas in Florida didn’t stave off the symptoms. I totally get the snowbirds now.

    Sorry, can’t think about the news now, y’all have got me anticipating ice on the sidewalks and gray, gray skies.

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  31. MaryRC said on June 21, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    So the Rap­ture believ­ers don’t have any prob­lem with leav­ing Fluffy in the hands of those who have been left behind?

    According to the website these folks have a crew of non-believers lined up to take care of your pets ATR (After The Rapture). Presumably these people will be left behind not because they’re sinners but simply because they don’t believe in the Rapture. But really, leaving your pet with a non-believer is just asking for trouble. Fluffy is going to wind up as the centerpiece in one of their pagan rituals.

    I sus­pect Levi and Bris­tol are back together because they ran out of ways to make money from their his­tory indi­vid­u­ally. As a team they can find a few more ways to gen­er­ate rev­enue.

    Like Heidi and Spencer in reverse. Imagine the reality series that could be built around the wedding. Especially when the Johnsons and the Palins get together for the rehearsal dinner.

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  32. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    Who wants to bet on when Levi and Bristol will ink a contract to star in a reality series? With Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt on the outs, doesn’t America need a new twosome who are outwardly attractive but vapid, shallow and self-centered?

    I’m thinking “Wasilla G.E.D. 99629” or “The Snowbillies Next Door.”

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  33. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Do you have a microphone over my desk?? You are uncanny.

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  34. MaryRC said on June 21, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    Great minds, Jeff!

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  35. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    I’m anticipating the hot weather we’ll get soon. So far we’ve had a cool spring here. I know we’ll have 100 degree weather soon enough. I really hate 100 degree weather.

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  36. paddyo' said on June 21, 2010 at 4:58 pm

    What Jeff B. said @ 18 . . .

    And LA Mary @ 11:
    The Jesus-and-military images pre-date the present wave of fundies, and in other quarters.

    In my early 1960s fourth grade year at St. Frances of Rome Catholic School in Azusa east of you, Mrs. Nunn (“Hey, Mom, I’m being taught by a Nunn!”) used to lead us daily in sing-alongs with an awful and scratchy 78-rpm record of Lawrence-Welkish chorale singers to songs about each of the Seven Holy Sacraments (Baptism, Confession, Holy Communion, Confirmation, Matrimony, Ordination and Last Rites/Anointing of the Sick).

    The one about Confirmation was a martial romp that went something like, “We are soldiers in Christ’s Arrr-my! Marching tooooo our heav’nly goal . . . ” That soldier image was behind the traditional not-quite-a-slap-on-the-cheek tap that the local bishop (in my case, the auxiliary bishop who later became LA’s Cardinal Timothy Manning) would give to each confirmee — sort of a buck-up-buddy-boy-it’s-a-tough-world-out-there.

    (Catholic scholars out there: Do they still do that cheek tap at confirmation?)

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  37. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    Since I regularly bash the national Republican Party and its most loathesome members, I want to give some love to the GOPers for repudiating the fat little shitheel from Texas who apologized to BP during Congressional hearings last week. It may well be that the dressing down of Joe “Oil Slick” Barton was just politics since his loving embrace of the BP CEO will be wonderful fodder for Democrats. Regardless of the reason, however, I tip my hat to the Repubs for blasting this nasty little man.

    Now, when will Congressional Democrats blast that idiot congresswoman from Ohio, who wants to disband the House Ethics Committee because it is investigating her office?

    Tick, tick, tick.

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  38. Deborah said on June 21, 2010 at 6:53 pm

    Paddyo’ I’m impressed that you can remember all that stuff from 4th grade, the actual words and everything.

    My Christian right-wing sister is big on battles (she’s a real battle-ax). She loves to talk about warriors for Jesus. That is just wrong, wrong, wrong.

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  39. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    I remember Onward Christian Soldiers, marching as to war…
    Whenever Jesus’ name comes up, I ask, “you mean the Prince of Peace?”

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  40. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 7:10 pm


    . . .and then you wait to get punched, right?

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  41. LAMary said on June 21, 2010 at 7:14 pm

    More subtle. My car will get keyed.

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  42. Jeff Borden said on June 21, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    Well, I have heard of those wrist bands some Christians where: WWJK. What would Jesus key?

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  43. Dave said on June 21, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    Put my wife in among the group who lament the first day of summer because the days will start getting shorter. She really has a difficult time during the short days of December and January when there’s little sun. Some winters, I don’t even think she’s quite aware of how she becomes but I’m always glad to see them pass. She craves the sun!

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  44. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 21, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    We could all do with a bit of double-reverse understanding about “jihad” or the battle within: see Philo of Alexandria and his quote that I treasure: “Be kind, for everyone is fighting a great battle.” That contrast or comparison might give Moslems and Christians and Jews something rather useful to talk about.

    Shambhala Buddhism, from Chogyam Trungpa’s teaching on “The Way of the Warrior,” has a rather interesting spin on the whole “holy warfare” imagery – http://www.shambhala.org/path.php – and “spiritual warfare” in Christianity is much more complex, and essentially pacifistic, in most of its uses as a spiritual discipline template than the “Onward, Christian Soldiers” stereotype would indicate – http://www.spirithome.com/self-control.html – being one good example.

    And keep in mind that the composer of “The Pirates of Penzance” and “The Mikado” was also the source of “Onward…” — there’s a bit of irony intended that got lost in the trenches of Belgium and the forests of the Ardennes.

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  45. moe99 said on June 22, 2010 at 4:11 am

    Okay, I have to join the sun mourners club, abeit late.

    Add me to your list, Deborah, Sue, Coleen,Drothy, Julie and Dave’s wife. Here in Seattle we have fabulously long summer days (though this year they’ve all been grey) and the winter sucks with the sun going down at 3:30 or so it seems.

    Julie, have you tried mega doses of Vitamin D? That seems to help me.

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  46. brian stouder said on June 22, 2010 at 8:51 am

    I counted to 10 (slowly), and then decided not to respond to the following, which was emailed to me (along with a pirated image of the Cat in the Hat), and which I thought I’d share. (afterall, if this is the best the opposition can do…)

    I do not like this Uncle Sam, I do not like his health care scam.

    I do not like these dirty crooks, or how they lie and cook the books.

    I do not like when Congress steals,

    I do not like their secret deals.

    I do not like this speaker Nan ,

    I do not like this ‘YES WE CAN’.

    I do not like this spending spree,

    I’m smart, I know that nothing’s free,

    I do not like your smug replies, when I complain about your lies.

    I do not like this kind of hope.

    I do not like it, you BIG Dope.

    I do not like it NOPE, NOPE. NOPE!

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  47. coozledad said on June 22, 2010 at 9:06 am

    They fuck you up, the racist right
    they always meant to, and they did
    the lesser Bush, their archangel
    one more screw in the lid
    But they were fucked up in their turn
    by idiots in power ties
    who half the time were diddling kids
    and half at one another’s flys
    They hand on misery to man
    greasy, like the gulf coast shelf
    when you pass them on the street
    look away, and cross yourself.

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  48. nancy said on June 22, 2010 at 9:07 am


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  49. brian stouder said on June 22, 2010 at 9:10 am


    maybe I will respond to that email, with a pirated copy of Cooz’s verse….

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  50. LAMary said on June 22, 2010 at 11:33 am

    TMMO Jeff,
    Your scholarship on the subject is miles beyond my knowledge. Based on what I do know I’d say a lot of blood (their own and the chosen enemy’s) has been shed by people who are warriors for their religion. Whether we’re talking about The Crusades or Belfast or the Taliban, they all have God on their side. Perhaps being so sure God is on one’s side is the problem.

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