Several major subplots emerge at once: Hiro messes up Takezo Kensei's history and has to clean it up, Suresh infiltrates The Company in conspiracy with Mr. Bennett, Claire is being observed by a teenage mutant (is he with The Company, or on his own, or with someone else?), Molly is having nightmares about the Worse Than Sylar individual, someone is out to get the surviving members of Linderman's inner circle, and a brother and sister travel from Latin America in search of the author of Activating Evolution, hoping to rid the sister of a terrifying ability.
Oh, and Peter Petrelli is alive, found chained inside an shipping container, and he has amnesia. Excuse me while I bang my head against the wall.
[bang bang bang bang bang bang bang]
The real Takezo Kensei turns out to be an Englisman, and not quite the gallant Samurai that history makes him out to be. I'm guessing that Hiro will be engaging in a little medieval identity theft to restore the timeline.
Mohinder's mission will serve a dual purpose, finding a cure for the microbe that kills heroes (like his late sister who died in chidhood) and spying on The Company for Mr. Bennett.
Mr. Bennett's defiance of his boss didn't make sense until Mohinder's mission was revealed - it seems to me that Bennett foresees that his guerilla war against The Company will occasionally cut into his nine-to-five at the print shop, and he is preparing his boss for those moments.
Who killed Kaito Nakamura? First guess is Claude because of a) the hooded attire, and b) he has a long-standing grudge against Linderman's people. But it's probably somebody new. Whoever it was has the ability to jump from a building and avoid getting splattered on pavement.
I agree with Parkman - using his psychic ability in the line of duty is not cheating. Molly's conversation in the dinner scene seemed to un-childlike. I hope Parkman has the sense to tell her to not draw the creepy eyes before.
Spencer explains how interpretations of Verse 64 retarded science in the Islamic world:
Accordingly, there was no point to observing the workings of the physical world; there was no reason to expect that any pattern to its workings would be consistent, or even discernable. If Allah could not be counted on to be consistent, why waste time observing the order of things? It could change tomorrow. Stanley Jaki, a Catholic priest and physicist, explains that it was the renowned Sufi thinker al-Ghazali who "denounced natural laws, the very objective of science, as a blasphemous constraint upon the free will of Allah." The great twelfth-century Jewish philosopher Moses Maimonides explained orthodox Islamic cosmology in similar terms, noting that Islamic thinkers of his day assumed "the possibility that an existing being should be larger or smaller than it really is, or that it should be different in form and position from what it really is; e.g., a man might have the height of a mountain, might have several heads, and fly in the air; or an elephant might be as small as an insect, or an insect as huge as an elephant. This method of admitting possibilities is applied to the whole Universe."
Al-Ghazali's philosophy suffers a fatal flaw: God can create a universe that defaults to a certain set of physical laws when God chooses not to directly intervene with a different set of instructions. Just as a clock behaves according to certain principles which in no way place any limits on what an external entity can do to the clock, the universe has a set behavior that does not prevent God from altering the default setting.
There's more. check it out.
Click the "Koran" label to see all my posts on this series.
Of special note is Verse 32; three translations cited below (emphasis added):
YUSUFALI: On that account: We ordained for the Children of Israel that if any one slew a person - unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land - it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people. Then although there came to them Our messengers with clear signs, yet, even after that, many of them continued to commit excesses in the land.
PICKTHAL: For that cause We decreed for the Children of Israel that whosoever killeth a human being for other than manslaughter or corruption in the earth, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind, and whoso saveth the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind. Our messengers came unto them of old with clear proofs (of Allah's Sovereignty), but afterwards lo! many of them became prodigals in the earth.
SHAKIR: For this reason did We prescribe to the children of Israel that whoever slays a soul, unless it be for manslaughter or for mischief in the land, it is as though he slew all men; and whoever keeps it alive, it is as though he kept alive all men; and certainly Our messengers came to them with clear arguments, but even after that many of them certainly act extravagantly in the land.
Spencer tells us how this verse is often taken out of context:
Never mentioned by the President or any of the others who quote this verse as if it condemns Islamic jihadist violence are several important facts: it comes within the context of a warning to the Jews, and is not presented as a universal principle; it contains the important exception "unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land," and it is followed by v. 33, which specifies the punishment for that mischief: "The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter."
Punishing "mischief" is at the root of jihadist violence, so these verses give them justification, not condemnation.
Click the "Koran" label to see all my posts on this series.
Update: Originally titled as Sura 4, "The Women" - correction is now in place.
"'A lot of districts are kind of stuck in the old mindset' that parents are responsible for their children's breakfast, Chandran said, 'And that doesn't yield good participation.'" – from a San Diego Union-Tribune story about under-use of the school breakfast program, quoting and paraphrasing Sivakumar Chandran of California Food Policy Advocates. (September 15 San Diego Union-Tribune)
Sant S. Chatwal, an Indian American businessman, has helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaigns, even as he battled governments on two continents to escape bankruptcy and millions of dollars in tax liens.
The founder of the Bombay Palace restaurant chain, Chatwal is one of a growing number of fundraisers in the 2008 presidential campaign whose backgrounds have prompted questions about how much screening the candidates devote to their "bundlers" while they press to raise record amounts.
Chatwal's case reached from his native India to New York City. The IRS pursued him for approximately $4 million in unpaid business taxes, while New York state placed a lien seeking more than $5 million in taxes. He forfeited a building to New York City on which he was delinquent on property taxes and was sued by federal regulators seeking to recoup millions of dollars in loans from a failed bank where he served as a director.
Across the ocean, three Indian banks forced him into U.S. bankruptcy, and he was charged with bank fraud. He was out on bond when he showed up in India in 2001 during a visit by his longtime friend Bill Clinton.
Link via Accuracy in Media, in an article that also reports this:
In financial terms, a much larger scandal has virtually escaped media coverage altogether. The last week of August, the Federal Elections Commission fined the George Soros-funded group Americans Coming Together (ACT) $775,000. This was the third largest fine the FEC had ever levied on an organization or campaign. ACT's violation was that it had violated campaign finance laws during the 2004 election cycle. ACT said it was using the funds for nonpartisan purposes, but the FEC said the money was being used for very partisan purposes―to defeat President Bush.
The amount of money was astounding. According to a posting on the New York Times website by Kate Phillips, a longtime editor at the Times, citing the FEC statement regarding the fine, "ACT raised approximately $137 million in connection with the 2004…The FEC concluded that approximately $70 million in disbursements characterized by ACT as 'administrative expenses' for door-to-door canvassing, direct mail and telemarketing were actually attributable to clearly identified federal candidates and were required either to be paid with 100% federal funds or to be allocated between federal and non-federal candidates based on the time or space devoted to the candidates."
Phillips summarized the FEC's findings by saying that, "based on complaints by campaign finance advocacy groups like Democracy 21 and the Campaign Legal Center…ACT used millions of dollars in unregulated money to promote the candidacy of Senator John Kerry and the defeat of George Bush for re-election."
In a raw populist appeal, Democrat John Edwards on Saturday accused presidential rival Hillary Rodham Clinton of defending a lobbyist-driven political system that is "rigged against regular Americans" and that killed her plan for universal health care.
The former North Carolina senator accepted a major union endorsement while insisting that no Democratic candidate legitimately can promise to change America without swearing off special interest money from federal lobbyists. New York Sen. Clinton has refused to do so.
"When it comes to the existing lobbyist game, we've got to end it and not defend it," Edwards told more than 700 members of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters.
John Edwards is telling a union crowd that he's anti-lobbyist? Isn't that like telling a crowd of children that you're anti-candy?
NewsMax has some prime Rush quotes, notably his statements that Craig has become radioactive to the GOP ("The Republicans threw Larry Craig under the bus, and you know who was driving the bus, Mitt Romney"), and that the Dems have refrained from calling for resignations when Democrats have done far worse than what Craig was alleged to have done.
I was wondering when someone would make the comparison. Michelle Malkin's latest includes a littel graph illustrating how much Hsu and Abramoff gave to each party. Hint: Abramoff was far more bipartisan in his fundraising...
Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.
Why do we have a holiday dedicated to only one element of commerce? The "strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country" is dependent on five factors:
Liberty. Laws regarding commerce and property rights are relatively fair and consistent. Taxation levels, while far from ideal, are such that (except in a few areas) they do not choke out business startups and growth. The streets are free from warfare and from government pogroms.
Culture. Society generally encourages private-sector employment; in several African nations, by contrast, the college-educated gravitate heavily toward government jobs. The rate of crimes against person and property, except in various urban neighborhoods, is not so high that businesses are driven away.
Entrepreneurs. These are the people responsible for the organization of an entire company, the establishment of its entire product line, and the assumption of the risk inherent in the venture.
Investors. Businesses must be financed. Outside sources such as banking institutions and stockholders routinely invest in established businesses, and occasionally provide capital for startups. Investors assume some degree of risk.
Labor. Traditionally this term is used to signify all non-managerial positions within a company. I use it to refer to include all non-entrepreneurial positions in a company. The common usage of "labor" and "management" insinuates that managers (including entrepreneurs) don't really do anything, that their organizational duties isn't really "work." I use "entrepreneur" and "labor" to distinguish between those responsible for an entire company and those responsible for portions of it.
Happy Commerce Day! Drink a toast to the Bill of Rights, peaceful citizens, Bill Gates, Wall Street, and all your coworkers.