Intermittent Blogging

My sister-in-law is in town for a few days so I’m not sure how much time I’ll have for blogging.

For those who want a census of the Cynical Compound for the rest of the week we have 2 Haitian-Americans, 1 Irish/French/Misc-American and 1 Cynikitty. Sounds like a good premise for a sitcom.

US to Give Israel $30 Billion

From BBC News:

US Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns has signed a deal that will provide Israel with $30bn (£14.8bn) of military aid over the next 10 years.

The Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, has said the aid will preserve his country’s military advantage over other countries in the Middle East.

The new military aid package represents a 25% increase from present levels.

The US announced multi-billion-dollar arms deals with Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and other Gulf states last month.

Washington says it wants to help its allies in the Middle East meet their security needs and counter the growing power of Iran in the region.

Mr Burns and Israeli Foreign Ministry Director-General Aharon Abramovitz signed the memorandum of understanding on the new aid package at a ceremony in Jerusalem.

Needless to say, given Israel’s predicament, living in a region that is very violent and unstable, its military edge is of interest to our country, and we’ve committed to that

It will see Washington transfer $30bn over the next decade, compared to $24bn over the past 10 years. The first payment of $2.55bn will be made in October 2008.

Mr Burns called the aid package an “investment in peace”, saying “peace cannot be made without strength”.

Daily Dose of Ingersoll


There is certainly nothing in the Old or the New Testament
that could not have been written by uninspired human beings. To me
there is nothing of any particular value in the Pentateuch. I do
not know of a solitary scientific truth contained in the five books
commonly attributed to Moses. There is not, as far as I know, a
line in the book of Genesis calculated to make a human being
better. The laws contained in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and
Deuteronomy are for the most part puerile and cruel. Surely there
is nothing in any of these books that could not have been produced
by uninspired men. Certainly there is nothing calculated to excite
intellectual admiration in the book of judges or in the wars of
Joshua; and the same may be said of Samuel, Chronicles, and Kings.

The history is extremely childish, full of repetitions of useless
details, without the slightest philosophy, without a generalization
born of a wide survey. Nothing is known of other nations; nothing
imparted of the slightest value; nothing about education,
discovery, or invention. And these idle and stupid annals are,
interspersed with myth and miracle, with flattery for kings who
supported priests, and with curses and denunciations for those who
would not hearken to the voice of the prophets. If all the historic
books of the Bible were blotted from the memory of mankind, nothing
of value would be lost.

Robert Green Ingersoll – “Why I Am Agnostic”