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« Tablet Magazine Refuses To Apologize To Readers For Anti-Holocaust-Survivor Screed | Main | Top Headline Comments 7-20-12 »
July 19, 2012

Overnight Open Thread (7-19-2012)

History's Bloodiest Wars And Who To Blame

From our own beloved pixy.

Rank Name Aggressor Victim How Many
1 World War II Germany, Japan,
sundry others
best forgotten
Everyone else 40 million+
2 An Lushan Rebellion China China 33 million*
3 Mongol Invasions Mongols Everyone else 30 million**
4 Yuan Dynasty Collapse China China 30 million
5 Ming Dynasty China China 25 million
6 Taiping Rebellion China China 20 million
7 World War I Germany,
Ottoman Empire,
Influenza Virus
Everyone else 15-65 million
8 Tamerlane's Conquests Tamerlane Human decency 15 million
9 Dungan Revolt China China 8 million
10 Russian Revolution Filthy Commies Anastasia,
sound agricultural
5 million

Looking at this table I'm thinking that China has been just a little too quiet for a little too long. And if Lewis Richardson got it right, we are getting near the statistical due date for a 109 death conflict.


And to make up for all that I offer you some kittenz:


Retirement Ages

Note that these are the 'official' retirement ages. But often government workers, members of certain unions or anyone deemed in a 'hazardous' occupation (such as hairdressers in Greece) are allowed to retire at 50.


Firing For Questioning Stolen Valor

You may have heard of the recent Alvarez supreme court decision but here is the sordid dénouement to the original case:

On a tour bus trip to Southern California Edison's Big Creek power plant, event planner Melissa Campbell was passing out snacks to dignitaries when one of them asked her a question that would change both of their lives and make U.S. judicial history.

"Do you know who I am?" asked Xavier Alvarez, an elected member of a local water board, not waiting for an answer.

"I am a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient."

But of course it turns out that Alvarez was never even in the military much less a recipient of the medal of honor. And this made Campbell mad enough to confront him.

Less attention has been paid to the fate of the woman who helped expose Mr. Alvarez and who brought him to the attention of the FBI. Ms. Campbell, the event planner serving Mr. Alvarez snacks on June 27, 2007, was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served her country for 10 years.

...By the time the investigation into Mr. Alvarez was under way, Ms. Campbell had other concerns. Days after the trip to Big Creek, she said, she was suspended by the company and told that it was unprofessional to confront Mr. Alvarez.

One supervisor said, "I don't understand why you made such a big deal. You're not even a Marine anymore," Ms. Campbell recalled.

"Do you understand what they do to earn their awards?" Ms. Campbell replied.

Suspended from her job, Ms. Campbell said she later got a phone call from the company asking her to attend a meeting. When she walked into the office, she said, she saw boxes full of her belongings.

It was official, she said - she'd been fired.

Well I guess no modern legal story is complete until the guilty have gone free and the virtuous are punished.


Woody Guthrie vs. The Animals: House of the Rising Sun

Well Woody's 1941 version may be more folk-authentic, but I think the Animals 1965 version has more passion and is just plain better.

Reclaiming China's Photographs

Almost no photographs from before 1970 exist in China. Why? Cultural Revolution and a communist police state that's why.

China's photographic record begins only in the 1970s because nearly all earlier pictures were destroyed. The ones that survived are mostly outside China, and a major effort is now under way to bring them together online, says the BBC's Mary Ward-Lowery.

Any government that deliberately tries to destroy memories of the past is pretty much guaranteed to turn a country into bloody hellhole.


The One Food Item You Shouldn't Order According to Fast Food Workers

  • Fast food ice. This seems to be recurring as it is difficult to keep the machines clean and mold free. There have been studies and articles regarding this issue. Added We tend not to think about soft drink machines, how often they're cleaned and the amount of calories in the drinks themselves.

  • Unconventional pizza toppings or menu items seem to be a popular concern among the employed. I can attest to this personally in regard to topping meats and certain specialty items.


Yahoo group. That is all.

And my Twitter spew.

Tonight's post brought to you by seems legit:


Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to maetenloch at gmail. Otherwise send tips to Ace.

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posted by Maetenloch at 10:10 PM

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