Daily Archives: May 29, 2014

For the most part, I don’t see that a crime was committed

 

What difference, at this point, does it make?

What difference, at this point, does it make?

Faith healer convicted of fraud 

A self-styled shaman who conned £1million from victims desperate for spiritual healing is facing a long jail sentence.

Juliette D’Souza, 59, persuaded 11 people to hand her £1million to cure terminal illnesses, ease disabilities and help women have babies.

So cynical was her scam, that she even persuaded a fertility treatment client to abort her six-week-old pregnancy so she could continue to siphon money from her.

Today a jury of seven men and five women unanimously found D’Souza guilty of 23 counts of obtaining property by deception and fraud after just one hour of deliberation.

D’Souza had told clients that shamans would hang their cash off a magical tree in the Amazonian rainforest in Suriname, Blackfriars Crown Court heard.

But instead she spent their money on flights, antiques, Louis Vuitton handbags and renting four luxury flats in Hampstead, north London, which she filled with rubbish.

The poor woman who was persuaded to abort her child has a case, certainly, but is there really any difference in result between Ms. D’Souza buying herself a fancy handbag or “hanging the cash in a magical tree”? Where’s the harm done here? The money’s gone either way, with identical effect: nil.

 

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Barack Obama marks death of Maya Angelou with … a picture of Barack Obama

From Weasel Zippers

Screen-shot-2014-05-28-at-3.02.47-PM

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You can make this stuff up, but Michelle will have already been there

Michelle_Obama_Shovels_Food-375x500From Best of the Web

Life Imitates the Onion

  • “Woman a Leading Authority on What Shouldn’t Be in Poor People’s Grocery Carts”–headline, Onion, May 1
  • “The Campaign for Junk Food: Michelle Obama on Attempts to Roll Back Healthy Reforms”–headline and subheadline, New York Times, May 29

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Well yes, we’ve pointed this out before, many times

 

Hamptons beachfront, $12.9 million - get it while it's still there!

Hamptons beachfront, $12.9 million – get it while it’s still there!

The left doesn’t really believe in global warming.

…. But how do leaders of the environmental left address these opposing doomsdays? By raising taxes, increasing government, impeding capitalism and reducing national sovereignty. Coincidentally, the same policies they would promote if their supposed environmental catastrophe was utter fiction. It is little wonder that voters are suspicious.

When natural gas production was a too-expensive alternative to oil, the environmental lobby promoted it as a surefire way to reduce carbon emissions. Close the coal- and oil-fired plants; convert cars to run on CNG. Yes, it will devastate industries, cost jobs and burn billions of dollars, but think of the children!

Since even malevolent industrialists love their kids, energy barons took the greens’ advice and found cheaper, more efficient ways to extract and transport natural gas. What a victory for the movement! But instead of celebrating, envirolobbyists rent their garments over their once-miraculous fuel. The instant green energy translated into Big Oil profits, progressives placed the CNG and fracking on their naughty list.

….

Every time a real-world solution is provided to a promised calamity, leftist leaders move the goalposts. To be sure, many well-meaning parishioners have bought the con and piously observe the demanding rituals of earth worship. But the high priests still jet around the globe, chasing checks from energy tycoons to build monstrous mansions along doomed coastlines.

That’s because the Left doesn’t really believe in climate change. Their true religion is raising taxes, increasing government, impeding capitalism and reducing national sovereignty. Climate change is just a temporary excuse to achieve those ends.

Best comment:

I’ll believe that they believe in global warming/climate change/climate disruption/climate inconvenience… when I can buy a place on the beach in the Hampton’s for $50 – I mean its basically worthless.

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When the numbers are bad, add more numbers

 

And if we include gun running, then Bob's your uncle

And if we include gun running, then Bob’s your uncle

Britain to include drugs and prostitution earnings to GDP calculations.

Prostitutes and drug dealers are set to give Britain a £10bn boost as the country revamps the way it measures its economy.

Britain said on Thursday it would include prostitution and illegal drugs in its official national accounts for the first time. The move is one of the changes planned for September that will add up to 5 per cent to the UK’s gross domestic product.

 

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On the other hand, this father will be named Parent of the Year

Does this dress make me look fat?

Does this dress make me look fat?

Oregon: Father buys his four-year-old his first dress.

Yuvi Zalkow, a writer based in Portland, Oregon, writes in an essay published on Medium.com that when his son first started exhibiting feminine qualities, his instinct was to fight against it, attempting to steer him towards superhero action figures instead of dolls, dresses and nail polish.

But ultimately he came to realize that the most important thing was the boy’s happiness. ‘Who the hell was I to tell him another way?’ he writes. ‘What is blamable here? This is being alive.’

His son was four years old the day that Mr Zalkow, carrying him home from daycare, worked up the courage to take him dress-shopping after he had expressed his interest in girls’ clothes for months.

At the Goodwill store, ‘he pulled me to the dress aisle like he had been shopping there a thousand times before,’ writes the author.

‘He picked two pink dresses with flowers on them, one skimpy dress that seemed inappropriate even for a girl, and a white one that seemed only fit for a wedding. “Dada,” he said as he handed the white one to me. “I love this one the most.”‘

The pair then took the dress home to try it on. ‘Together my boy and I stumbled our way through the art of putting on a fancy, fluffy white dress. (Over the head? Do you step into it? Where does this string thingy tie?)’ he recalls.

Once he had the dress on, the boy took a few steps forward in a way that seemed ‘both more awkward and more graceful than usual,’ writes his father. ‘He inhaled one deep breath and then spun in a circle. We both watched his dress float out around him and then come back to rest.’

 

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I’d probably still be in jail if these people were around 20 years ago

 

Touch me, Papa, and you'll go to jail!

Touch me, Papa, and you’ll go to jail!

Hawaii: Man fined, placed on probation and sentenced to “parenting school” for forcing son to walk a mile home from school.

The age of the boy isn’t reported, but considering that we used to walk a mile to school in 1st grade, I’m sure my parents were criminals too.

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Yes, but at least Los Angeles has banned e-cigarettes to compensate

 

Captain Pollution, John Travolta

Captain Pollution, John Travolta

Pollution from LAX far greater, and harmful, than was previously thought.

Levels of hazardous pollutants generated by planes at LAX are much more prolific and dangerous than previously believed, according to a study to be released today that asserts the airport generates as much toxic chemicals as hundreds of miles of freeway traffic.

Ultrafine toxic particulates permeate the area 10 miles downwind of the Westchester facility, contrary to previous studies that have found air pollution dissipates quickly after airplane takeoffs, according to the study that will be published in the American Chemical Society’s Environmental Science and Technology journal.

Los Angeles International Airport “should be considered one of the most important sources of (particulate matter concentration) in Los Angeles,” the report states.

As a result, residents living downwind and to the east of the airport in Hawthorne, Inglewood, El Segundo, Lennox, South Los Angeles and Westmont could be inhaling hazardous levels of nitrogen oxides and fine particulates that could contribute to inflammation, blocked arteries, asthma, heart conditions and other health issues, according to the American Chemical Society. Cities south of the airport are affected to a lesser degree.

“Based on these concentration-weighted impact areas, 280-790 kilometers of freeway are needed to produce the equivalent” to the hazardous particulates generated at the airport, the report states.

“The emissions from LAX are likely not unique.

But environmentalists need the airport to jet off to their global warming conferences in Bali (just as New Yorkers like Bloomberg need theirs to visit Bermuda) so the planes will stay. But fake cigarettes? Horrors!

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Happy Ending

 

Dave, we didn't know ye

Dave, we didn’t know ye

Pedophile Dave Herman dies in jail.

Legendary New York DJ Dave Herman died behind bars Wednesday while awaiting federal trial on charges of trying to seduce a 6-year-old girl.

The 78-year-old ex-WNEW-FM morning man apparently suffered a fatal aneurysm inside the Essex County Jail in Newark, according to WABC-TV.

Herman was locked up following his arrest last year in the Virgin Islands in an undercover sting operation conducted by Bergen County prosecutors.

Herman never spent another day as a free man after he was arrested Oct. 24 at the St. Croix airport, where he planned to meet the grammar school girl and her mom, authorities said.

During his long local radio run, Herman’s on-air guests included rock Hall of Famers John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan and the Eagles.

He was a fixture on the free-form FM station for more than a quarter-century.

But prosecutors, in a disturbing complaint, charged that Herman cut an internet deal with a 36-year-old woman to have sex with her daughter Lexi at his island vacation home.

“I find girls that age incredibly sexy, soft, and their innocence is also a huge turn-on for me,” Herman allegedly told the mom. “Age 6 is the perfect time to start her being loved that way.”

UPDATE: Fat chance

[Herman’s lawyer] Agnifilo said he hoped the case wouldn’t overshadow Herman’s legacy.

“Some would say he lived his last months under a legal cloud and that’s true, but we should remember him for the decades he gave the gift of music to people,” Agnifilo said.

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A correction from a reader

Ascending from the basement of Chez Asness

Ascending from the basement of Chez Asness

In response to my earlier mention of his Bat Cave and mansion, Mr. Cliff Asness has this to say:

Chris has been to my house and is clearly having fun. I won’t pretend it’s not a big home but off by several multiples, and sadly no cave… Someone posted more realistic numbers which I won’t get specific about. He did leave out the live gladitorial pit though.

With all deference to the modest Mr. Asness, I actually measured the joint, and it’s 62,000 sq. feet if it’s an inch. Still, if he wants to poor mouth himself and keep the tax appraiser at bay, who am I to reveal his secret?

But really, you should see that Bat Mobile.

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Open house report

 

15 Pierce Rd

15 Pierce Rd

15 Pierce Road, in Riverside, looked like the best deal of the day today at $1.399 million (no pictures posted yet so I’ve supplied one of my own). Not huge, and it could certainly use a couple of handrails on its stairs, but new kitchen, nice, sunny deck, beautiful gardens and a very convenient location. I’d love it at $1.299,but given the lack of inventory in this price range in Riverside, I think it will sell very close to its asking price, and quickly. Liz Smith priced it and listed it and she did a great job.

 

 

 

Ho hum

Ho hum

Not so great a job of pricing can be found at 33 Normandy Lane (off Indian Head), a 1968 builder’s special asking $3.950 million. I’m told that the owner insisted that he wouldn’t sell for anything less than $4 million, and he kept interviewing brokers until he found one willing to price it at that level. Of course, pricing and selling are two different things, and I suspect the owner will own this house for a long time. One acre, pretty much a tear-down, on land with a water table too high to permit a basement. Land value only in my opinion which, on this street, is going to be somewhere between $2.750 and, maybe …$3.2.

 

 

48 Bramble Lane

48 Bramble Lane

For that same $3.950, you could buy 48 Bramble Lane, a very, very nice house built by Dennis Conroy, who does fine work. I’d wondered at this price when the property was listed, but $3.85-$4.1 seems to be the range for new construction in the Bramble/Druid/Hearthstone triangle, and this is one of the finest to appear. Not much yard, but you have Eastern’s playing fields 100 yards away and Riversides just at the end of the street, so there’s no lack of opportunity for play space, assuming you can drive your children outdoors. Great finished basement, by the way, with a Filipina au pair suite, playroom with fireplace and more.

While speaking with Mr. Conroy he confirmed my own experience: he builds houses these days for people who work in the financial industry; lawyers and doctors can no longer afford Greenwich prices (and Connors points out that it’s soaring land costs that are driving up those prices). I’m sure Greenwich will be better off without a lawyer on every ambulance bumper, but we’re really becoming a one industry town. If Wall Street ever goes down, or stops paying insane bonuses, our real estate values will follow, all the way to the bottom.

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So what’s our president up to today?

 

Leader of the Free World

Leader of the Free World

Not much. Of course, we don’t want him to exceed his capabilities, so …

7-10 Leisurely breakfast of turkey bacon and egg white omelette. Then

10:00 am || Receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
11:10 am || Delivers remarks at the White House Healthy Kids & Safe Sports Concussion Summit; East Room
2:55 pm || Participates in a clinic as part of the Concussion Summit; South Lawn

UPDATE: Is Obama sponsoring this concussion festival to keep the attention focused on his old enemy, Hillary Clinton and her own fall from grace the podium?

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The EU government sounds exactly like our own

 In the wake of huge election defeats in England, EU doubles down and demands that taxpayers there cough up an additional£500 million.

The EU sparked fury by demanding an extra £500 million from British taxpayers – just hours after claiming it would take heed of damning election results.

The astonishing demand came just hours after Herman Van Rompuy, the President of the European Council, said EU leaders had agreed to ‘re-evaluate’ its agenda after voters ‘sent a strong message’ at the weekend.

The apparent climb down came a day after David Cameron demanded change – saying the EU had become ‘too big, too bossy and too interfering’.

He travelled to Brussels on Tuesday to demand the union be dramatically scaled back, and to warn fellow leaders not to ‘shrug off’ the view of the European people that Brussels should hand back power to national governments.

And moss bark free!

And moss bark free!

Oh, the inanity!

And this typical EU action: New “absurd” regulations on perfume ingredients will protect 1% of the population and end Chanel No.5 as (some of you) know it.

In a rational world, some might suggest that those who are allergic to perfume simply not use it. In the government of victimhood that controls Brussels and D.C., the “right” to wear perfume is enshrined and protected, and all citizens must modify their behavior to meet it.

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