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Wednesday, 11 December 2013


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Did you see this . Our guy, your guy, and some danish chick taking a selfie at the funeral.

I "speak" American Sign Language fluently. Every language has their own version - and there are even dialects within ASL (when we moved from the west coast to the east coast, I had to learn some new signs; and my daugher's midwest boyfriend has different signs I have now learned). There are major differences between ASL and British Sign Language (of which I know a little). Sign language's do not interpret word for word - they have their own syntax. Signed English is not ASL or BSL.
I watched a video of his signing, and while I don't know the sign language he was using, I can say that I do not think he was signing gibberish. There were consistencies. I have however, seen really BAD interpreters. He is probably just really bad. One thing missing was the body language which is part of sign languages.
Having said all that (and I could tell funny stories about my early learning years), I was not there, nor did I see the entire programme. And I will leave it at that, for I have probably written more than our gracious host's post!

Perhaps he was actually telling the truth about Mandela, rather than what The One was saying? You know, that Mandela was in favour of the Cuban prison-island. That he liked the Assad regime. That he approved of Mugabe. That he thought Gadaffi was a great guy. That he thought the British were racist. And so on.

As you might work out, I am no fan of Mandela. Apparently, black South African women are more likely to be raped than they are to be taught to read. What a record!

Dom, yes, it's all over the prints and the three of them are hetting a good kicking!

You can write as much as you like, Miss Red, er, just so long as you keep up with the pretty lady illustrations over at your place! As to the 'signing', sundry experts 'over here' have indicated on the TV that they were very doubtful about what he was doing, not least because, as you suggest there was no body or facial 'language' to go with it. Anyway, I think it was a hoot and I hope they give him his own show when they eventually find out who he is!

Well, BOE, as I indicated in my farewell to the man, he will go down in history not for what he did but for what he didn't do and the fact that there were so many whites out on the streets celebrating his life speaks volumes. Having achieved power and having steered his country past a bloodbath I suspect that he was old and tired and simply wanted to live out the rest of his life in relative peace and quiet. The fact that a kleptocracy has taken over is South Africa's tragedy but not his fault.

backofanenvelope. I was not aware that Cuba was a prison island since the old fascist regime was booted out. Would you rather have the various US mafioso crime gangs running the show in Cuba! Cuba will find its own way along in history. It is time the US held out its hand and did a deal that does not include the US and Cuban criminals taking over.

missred. Apparantly there has been complaints in the past about this guy. I think he was going through the motions on orders from the ANC.
This ANC are probably power mad by now with no real opposition.
Things could get nasty in SA without the influence of Mandela.

Jimmy, it was mafia gangs that got Las Vegas going and by all accounts it has prospered mightily - a lot more than Cuba has! And there have been political prisoners in Cuba ever since that murderous thug Castro (and his family!) took over.

Well Jimmy, I always think the true verdict on a country is are people trying to get out or to get in. On that question it is pretty obvious what group Cuba is in.

"Find[ing] its own way along in history" is something Cuba could have done under Batista. South Korea, Taiwan, and other countries all evolved out of kleptocracies into functioning democracies. The secret is a free market.

Absolutely right, BOE, I remember back in the '60s/'70s when Tony Benn and his ilk never stopped screeching about how awful conditions were in Hong Kong. I used to remind myself (and them when I had an opportunity) that we had troops and barbed wire and watch-towers along the frontier not to keep the people *in* but to keep the Chinese *out* because they couldn't wait to get in there and have some of that so-called 'slave labour'!

Dom, sorry, but I must ask you to watch your language! Jimmy is a delicate little flower and words like "free market" have a strange effect on him!

Castro proved a more effective gangster than the mafia, that's all.

backofanenvelope. I was not aware that Cuba was a prison island since the old fascist regime was booted out.


Oddly enough the "not aware Cuba was a prison island" occurred to me just after our Senator McCain rumbled on about it's very bad our President shook hands with Cuba's Raul Castro at Mandela's funeral because Castro imprisons a whole bunch of people in Cuba!

(As it happens I've got a picture of McCain shaking hands with that ol' Libyan rascal Gaddafi - but that I recognize was not your point) rather yours was "not being aware Cuba was a prison!"

On 'some other's point' that the Mafia was what set up all Cuba's problems and our [the US] consequent problems being the Mafia's fault - Cuba & us [US] goes a little further back than Prohibition. From that above link:

As Woodrow Wilson, who was the president of Princeton at the time, put it in an April, 1907, address, “Colonies must be obtained or planted, in order that no useful corner of the world may be overlooked or left unused.” The corollary to this imperial proposition: once you wrested turf from somebody else, you found something to do with it.

(As sometimes happens when Naval bases are set up, sailors suddenly require "entertainment.")

Last comment (at least on this post) ... has to do with Cuba being in "actuality" a prison - also from the above link.

But the United States hung on. The reason was the Cold War. Gitmo’s main purpose in the late nineteen-seventies and eighties was ostentatious, technological muscle-flexing: showing Cuba and the Soviets that the United States still held sway in the Caribbean, in what one captain called a “visible manifestation of interest.” When, in August of 1979, American policymakers received reports (later proved inaccurate) of a newly arrived Soviet combat brigade in Cuba, they sent 1,800 marines in on three ships, simulating an assault on Gitmo using “inert ordinance.” The goal was to communicate America’s grit. “It’s crazy,” a young sergeant observed. “We’re invading ourselves.”

Then a new use for the base was discovered: the storage of people.

David. The problem the USA has is she has to have the allegience of all the criminals just like Pinochet for instance and so on and on.

I'm not sure I follow your point there, Jimmy.
But in the meantime, what's happened to Osler - I miss him.

David. My point David is it is rather hypocritical to condemn a lousy state whilst supporting another. The Yanks have given aid which is now in the hands of those jihadi nutters in Syria.
I do miss Osler we had some good banter on it although I think some lefties had a sense of humour failure. He was supposed to restart Autumn.


Perhaps David will "opine" at what appears to be a development in Syria.

It is, I will admit, extremely complicated.


JK. I doubt old stubborn David will opine. I do not think it is complicated. The West are just looking after their own economic interests as normal. The ammount of people killed or displaced is irrelevant. As long as the muslims think that everthing that happens is Gods will than that is a bonus for the West.

Jimmy, I will simply refer you to the late, great Lord Palmerston:

I cannot "opine" on Syria because I do not have opinion on it!

David. Well I did have an opinion on Syria which I expressed immediately when the so called Arab Spring was invented by someone.
Anywhere where muslim fundamentalists tread is bound to wind up in slaughter.

The Syrian problem is easy to understand. Syria is full of Arabs. They like killing each other. They have always killed each other. They have been doing it for 1300 years. They also like killing non-Arabs. We, the West, have just made things worse. MYOB is the policy that we should have.

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