Hard wired.

Developmental neuroscientists have found specific brain markers that predict generosity in children. Those neural markers appear to be linked to both social and moral evaluation processes. Although young children are natural helpers, their perspective on sharing resources tends to be selfish.

Researchers have created a simple mathematical model based on optical measurements that explains the stunning colors of Yellowstone National Park’s hot springs and can visually recreate how they appeared years ago, before decades of tourists contaminated the pools with make-a-wish coins and other detritus.

Well this has gotten out of hand.

Rand Paul trolls Marco Rubio on Twitter as Cuba feud turns nasty

Geez … ya think?

Borrowing Bad: Risky New Mortgage Rules Could Take Us Back to 2008

Not entirely principled.

To make our case we provided 3 video clips, the third one is a video showing homosexual activists in Ireland used the state to force a Christian bakery to make a cake with the slogan “Support Gay Marriage” for a pro-gay marriage event, but he refused which added a tremendous loss to his business. Several Christian bakeries were sued in the United States with several who lost their businesses and we said enough is enough.

So Shoebat.com decided to call some 13 prominent pro-gay bakers in a row. Each one denied us the right to have “Gay Marriage Is Wrong” on a cake and even used deviant insults and obscenities against us. One baker even said all sorts of profanities against Christians and ended the conversation by saying that she will make me a cookie with a large phallus on it.

Because it’s good being King.

Obama seeks to prolong power

Getting rocketed again.

A siren alarm went off at around 12:00 pm in several communities in Eshkol Regional Council in the south. A rocket fired from Gaza exploded in an unpopulated area outside one of the communities, without causing damage or injuries.

Nothing to see here … just move along.

Opponents of reforms intended to improve the security and integrity of the election process are constantly peddling the narrative that election fraud is a nonexistent problem. But they should turn their attention to Benton Harbor, Mich., where the Rev. Edward Pinkney, a local liberal activist, has just been convicted of election fraud—again.

Pinkney was convicted on five counts of forgery for illegally changing the dates on voter signatures on petitions that were being circulated to recall the town’s mayor, James Hightower. Pinkney was apparently upset over Hightower’s vote against putting an income tax on the November 2013 ballot. As a result of Pinkney’s forgery as well as questions about multiple signatures on the petitions by the same voters, the recall election was ordered removed from the ballot by the Michigan Court of Appeals.

Probably not the only one …

An activist group and online sources reporting from inside Syria claim that a mass grave filled with approximately 230 corpses has been discovered in eastern Syria. The victims are reportedly members of the Sheitaat tribe, which has been battling the Islamic State in the province of Deir Ezzor.

The fog of war makes it difficult, if not impossible, to fully verify accounts of human rights atrocities and other aspects of the conflict. The Long War Journal cannot independently verify accounts of the mass grave.

The Sheitaat tribesmen have waged fierce battles against the Islamic State, which claims to rule over a caliphate across large parts of Iraq and Syria, since earlier this year. There have been multiple reports in the past several months detailing the Islamic State’s mass executions and other barbaric acts in eastern Syria.

Images of the newly discovered mass grave began surfacing on Twitter feeds within the past day. And the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights (SOHR) has released a statement saying that “reliable” sources have informed the group that the site of the atrocity “was found in al-Keshkeyyi Desert in the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor.”

We’ll see where this one goes.

Facing threats, retired officers forced to sue D.C. for right to carry guns for protection

Department of Corrections workers wary of retaliation from vindictive criminals

Battle of the Bulge – Day 3 – 18 Dec 1944

3BoB18Dec44

3BoB18Dec44

Checking for tatoos.

The Osaka District Court has ruled that Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto’s order to check whether municipal office workers had tattoos was illegal and constituted an invasion of privacy.

The court handed down the ruling on Wednesday in a damages suit filed by a 56-year-old city bus driver, Tadasu Yasuda, who was transferred to a desk job after he refused to answer questions on whether or not he had a tattoo, Sankei Shimbun reported Thursday. Presiding Judge Kenji Nakagaito invalidated the transfer and ordered the Osaka municipal government to pay Yasuda 1.1 million yen in damages.

French may take a hit.

Some 400 Russian sailors training on a Mistral-class warship France controversially built for their navy will be returning home for an unspecified amount of time, the ship’s French builder has said.

“I can confirm that the Russian sailors will return (to Russia) before the end of year,” a spokesman for shipbuilder DCNS told AFP news agency on Wednesday.

The spokesman did not give a date for the sailors’ departure and could not say whether they would return to the port city of Saint-Nazaire, where the ship was built.

The sailors have been training since June on board the “Vladivostok”, one of two Mistral-class helicopter carriers destined for the Russian navy according to the terms of a €1.2 billion ($1.58 billion) deal signed in 2011.

The contract has been subject to months of intense speculation, with Paris coming under intense pressure from its NATO allies to scrap delivery of the ships due to Russia’s behaviour in the Ukrainian crisis.

The long … and terribly slow … arm of the law.

Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev returned to court Thursday for the first time since he was arraigned in July 2013.

Security was tight at the federal courthouse in Boston for the final pretrial conference before his trial begins next month.

Tsarnaev, 21, was led into the courtroom by U.S. marshals. He was wearing a black sweater and gray trousers and had a scruffy beard and a mop top hairstyle similar to the one seen in his mug shot. He smiled to his attorneys and one patted him on the arm.

The courtroom was packed with FBI agents, police who worked on the case and more than a dozen survivors and family members.

Does this mean paying Danish taxes?

Spirits were high outside Christiansborg today as a group gathered in anticipation of Parliament’s vote on the dual-citizenship law – a law some have been wanting to change for decades, which will now come into effect in September 2015.

Geert in trouble again.

Dutch far-right politician Geert Wilders is due to be prosecuted over allegations he incited racial hatred against Moroccans, the authorities say.

The charges stem from an incident in which Mr Wilders led an anti-Moroccan chant during a speech in March.

The Dutch public prosecutor later received more than 6,400 complaints.

Mr Wilders, who leads the Party for Freedom (PVV), has often expressed his distaste for Islam and mass immigration.

In response to the prosecution, Mr Wilders described the charges in a statement as “a travesty”.

“The public prosecutor would do better to devote his time to prosecuting jihadis instead of me,” he said.

Mr Wilders made his comments during a political meeting in The Hague.

Limited / slow blogging today.

Strange computer problems.

Shooting fish in a barrel.

Unauthorized immigrants who previously have been removed from the US are more likely to be rearrested after leaving jail and are likely to be rearrested much more frequently than those who have never been removed, a study concludes. The findings may be useful for the new federal Priority Enforcement Program, which will target interior immigration efforts more narrowly on those posing a distinct public safety risk. …

… The findings generally support strategies adopted by federal immigration authorities and some law enforcement agencies to focus their immigration enforcement efforts on immigrants who previously have been removed, who are viewed as posing a bigger criminal threat.

We always assumed that it was because they became dinner.

DNA from giant lemurs that lived thousands of years ago in Madagascar may help explain why the animals went extinct, and what makes some lemurs more at risk today. Scientists have little doubt that humans played a role in the giant lemurs’ demise. By comparing the species that died out to those that survived, scientists hope to better predict which lemurs are most in need of protection in the future.

Good idea … but so is ‘No Bailouts’.

Banks and financial institutions are planning an aggressive push to dismantle parts of the Wall Street reform law when Republicans take control of Congress in January.

Fresh off a victory in the government funding debate that liberals decried as a giveaway to Wall Street, advocates for the financial sector aim to pursue additional changes to Dodd-Frank that they say would lighten burdens created by the 2010 law. Among the top items on the wish list: easing new requirements on mortgages, loosening restrictions on financial derivatives and overhauling the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

How normal can it be with a country whose main source of outside income is prostitution?

President Obama will announce Wednesday that the U.S. is beginning talks with Havana to normalize full diplomatic relations with Cuba following the release of a U.S. prisoner jailed for five years by the country.

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) in a press released hailed the decision to seek a normalization of relations with Cuba, while the Associated Press reported the U.S. would use the talks to open an embassy in the island nation.

“Opening the door with Cuba for trade, travel, and the exchange of ideas will create a force for positive change in Cuba that more than 50 years of our current policy of exclusion could not achieve,” Durbin said in his release.

But there is this.

President Obama will announce Wednesday that the U.S. is beginning talks with Havana to normalize full diplomatic relations with Cuba following the release of a U.S. prisoner jailed for five years by the country.

Just in:

Obama trades 3 Cuban spies to secure release of Alan Gross

I don’t go to many movies but I promise to see this one.

Please resist the temptation to cancel showings of the new Seth Rogen/James Franco movie The Interview, merely because anonymous, possibly North Korean, hackers have threatened to turn your multiplexi into lakes of fire.

I’m not asking you to show this movie because I want to see it: I don’t. I won’t. From the previews, it looks like most Hollywood comedies — a plausible comedic scenario skinned bare of surprise and delight by sophomoric sex jokes and overly graphic violence. Subtlety is dead. Or as they say in Hollywood: “Subtlety is F%$&#ing dead from having its face melted off and head exploded in extreme closeup during sex with an amputee stripper.”

Person of the Year.

Jonathan Gruber should have been Time’s Person of the Year. The magazine gave it to the “Ebola Fighters” instead. Good for them; they’re doing God’s work. Still, Gruber would have been better.

Time’s Person of the Year designation has lost a lot of its stature over recent years. Part of its decline can probably be attributed to the fact that it’s come to be seen as an honorific. It was originally conceived to recognize the person who, “for better or for worse . . . has done the most to influence the events of the year.” So Adolf Hitler (1938) and Josef Stalin (1939 and again in 1942) qualified. In 2001, however, the editors couldn’t bring themselves to bestow the title on Osama bin Laden, even though he certainly deserved it. (New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani got it instead for his heroic response to the evil deeds of the person who influenced the events of the year most decidedly for the worse.)

Re-evaluating an old find.

A small stone container found by archaeologists a half-century ago has now been recognized as further evidence of a Viking or Medieval Norse presence in Arctic Canada during the centuries around 1000 A.D.

He’s right – A lot of people fell for it … and are willing to fall for it again.

Gruber was echoing a common sentiment among the American Left: You are too stupid to run your own life.

… Key Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber has been under a hot spotlight recently for disparaging comments he made about his fellow citizens.

In a series of videos taken at various conferences and lectures between 2010 and 2013, Gruber claimed that the effects of Obamacare had to be hidden from Americans because of “the stupidity of the American voter.” The Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor said that “lack of transparency is a huge political advantage” in writing such legislation and likened its critics to “my adolescent children.”

Adding, well, injury to the insult, it’s been discovered that Gruber received almost $6 million in taxpayer dollars for his various services in designing and consulting on Obamacare.

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