Weight Loss

A guy calls a company and orders their 5-day, 5lbs weight loss program.

The next day, there’s a knock on the door and there stands before him a voluptuous, athletic, 19 year old woman dressed in nothing but a pair of  running shoes and a sign around her neck. She introduces herself as a representative of the weight loss company. The sign reads, “If you can catch me, you can have me.”

Without a second thought, he takes off after her. A few miles later puffing and puffing, he finally gives up. The same girl shows up for the next four days and the same thing happens. On the fifth day, he weighs himself and is delighted to find he has lost 5lbs as promised.

He calls the company and orders their 5-day/10lbs program. The next day there’s a knock at the door and there stands the most stunning, beautiful, sexy woman he has ever seen in his life. She is wearing nothing but running shoes and a sign around her neck that reads, “If you catch me you can have me”.

Well, he’s out the door after her like a shot. This girl is in excellent shape and he does his best, but no such luck. So for the next four days, the same routine happens with him gradually getting in better and better shape.

Much to his delight on the fifth day when he weighs himself, he discovers that he has lost another 10lbs as promised. He decides to go for broke and calls the company to order the 7-day/25 lbs program.” Are you sure?” asks the representative on the phone. “This is our most rigorous program.” “Absolutely,” he replies, “I haven’t felt this good in years.”

The next day there’s a knock at the door; and when he opens it he finds a huge muscular guy standing there, wearing nothing but pink running shoes and a sign around his neck that reads: “If I catch you, you’re mine.”

Pilgrims in Lalibela Ethiopia: Sarah Tzinieris: 2015

This photo was taken during a dawn visit to Lalibela in Ethiopia. Arriving in Lalibela is an incredibly spiritual experience, not least because the town’s dozens of churches are carved out of rock. Ethiopia was one of the first countries to adopt Christianity; sometime between the 12th and 13th centuries, thousands of local people drew on their faith to spend decades carving out the churches from the mountainside. The photo depicts two pilgrims praying devoutly at Biete Medhane.


 Faith Through A Lens – 2015


France’s Politically Correct War on Islamic Terror

French President François Hollande has vowed to avenge the November 13 jihadist attacks in Paris that left more than 120 dead and 350 injured.

Speaking from the Élysée Palace, Hollande blamed the Islamic State for the attacks, which he called an “act of war.” He said the response from France would be “unforgiving” and “merciless.”

Despite the tough rhetoric, however, the question remains: Does Hollande understand the true nature of the war he faces?

Hollande pointedly referred to the Islamic State as “Daesh,” the acronym of the group’s full Arabic name, which in English translates as “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant,” or “ISIL.”

The official policy of the French government is to avoid using the term “Islamic State” because, according to French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, it “blurs the lines between Islam, Muslims and Islamists.”

Critics of the policy say “Daesh” is a politically correct linguistic device that allows Western leaders to claim that the Islamic State is not Islamic — and thus ignore the root cause of Islamic terror and militant jihad.


NATO and the Turkey Problem

Beyond the Cusp

We here at BTC have warned about the eventual problem that Turkey was going to pose for NATO any number of times over the years going back to our article The Turkey Problem for NATO, though we never envisioned it might mean war with Russia to be honest. We saw the problem coming between Turkey and Israel which only was heightened after the Mavi Marmara blockade running confrontation between Israeli Special Forces and the terrorists placed on the lead ship intentionally by IHH terrorist groups posing as a human rights group in our article Let’s Talk Turkey. The problem we saw forming between Turkey and NATO remained centered on their different Middle East views particularly when it came to Israel. This became heightened once again over Iraq and the Second Iraq War when once again the ever more so drifting from a secular state into an Islamic state…

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Erdogan’s License to Strangle

On November 1, nearly half the Turks (49.4%) gave President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Islamist government a ballot box license to strangle the other half. He will be only too happy to use that license aggressively.

Only five years ago, Turkey was being universally (and wrongly) portrayed as a success story, bringing together conservative Islam and democracy. Today, Turkey boasts one of the worst records of human rights and civil liberties — including abuses of media freedom — among countries tied by some kind of bond to Western institutions such as NATO and the European Union (EU). Erdogan hates pluralism. He embraces simple majoritarianism — so long as he wins the biggest share of the vote.

The renewed vote of confidence by pro-Erdogan Turks for Erdogan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), which he founded in 2001, could be disastrous for millions of anti-Erdogan Turks. In Erdogan’s mindset, his party’s landslide election victory not only gives him a mandate to rule, but also to crush “the other.”

Unsurprisingly, the West is worried. Only two days after the Turkish elections, State Department Spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau spoke of concerns about media freedoms in Turkey, and urged the country to uphold universal democratic values. “The media outlets and individual journalists critical of the government were subject to pressure and intimidation during the campaign, seemingly in a manner calculated to weaken political opposition,” Trudeau said. “We urge Turkish authorities to ensure their actions uphold the universal democratic values enshrined in Turkey’s constitution.”


Video: Hilary Benn: Could he become Labour leader?

Hilary Benn’s closing speech in the debate on bombing Isil in Syria captivated the House of Commons, setting off speculation that he could be future leadership material, and deservedly so.

The Shadow Foreign Secretary showed a tenacious grasp of detail in his forensic analysis of the case for air strikes, effectively tearing apart the anti-war case laid out by his leader, Jeremy Corbyn, who sat behind him glowering as he spoke. Philip Hammond, his opposite number, said the speech would “go down as one of the truly great speeches made in the House of Commons”, while his speech helped 66 Labour MPs decide to vote for action.

Hilary Benn has not been afraid to face down his leader, fighting for the right for the shadow cabinet to have a free vote on Syria, and posing as a voice of reason when Mr Corbyn opines about issues like nuclear disarmament.


Morning Briefing – The Telegraph

Good morning.

Jeremy Corbyn can breathe a sigh of relief, as Labour defied the gloomy expectations and kept hold of Oldham West and Royton, winning 17,209 votes, giving the party a clear majority of 10,722. Labour’s majority has fallen from its level in May of 14,738, however campaigners will be pleased to see their party taking a greater share of the vote (62.1 per cent, up from 54.8) and decisively seeing off the threat of Ukip, which came in second with 6,487 votes.

Turnout was higher than expected in Michael Meacher’s old seat, at just over 40 per cent, and Labour’s success appears to have been partly secured by an effective postal vote operation. However, former Labour adviser John McTernan argues this isn’t a victory for Corbynism, writing: “After Oldham West and Royton we can see what is needed is a Blairite candidate, a Blairite speech on security in the Commons and total censorship of the Leader. Simples.”

Ukip isn’t taking its defeat quietly, with Nigel Farage complaining of it being corrupted by “bent” postal voting. “As a veteran of over 30 by-elections I have never seen such a perverse result. Serious questions need to be asked,” the Ukip leader said. Paul Nuttall, Ukip’s deputy leader, went further by telling journalists that the postal voting system was “an affront on our democracy”. “You’ve got to ask yourself, is this Britain or is this Harare?,” he added. Farage has promised to file a formal complaint about the “abuses”, but has yet to produce evidence to back up his claims so far.

Jeremy Corbyn is proudly chalking Labour’s by-election win as a “vote of confidence in our party”, but how much of an endorsement is it of the leader? Oldham West has been a stalwart Labour seat since its creation, so how much of a threat was the party really under? The national swing required for Labour to lose it in a general election would potentially oust big names like Chuka Umunna in Streatham and John McDonnell in Hayes and Harlington. By-elections can play by their own rules too, with Professor Steve Fielding pointing out that Labour unexpectedly won Darlington in a by-election, a life-line for its leader Michael Foot, just weeks before it staggered on to its 1983 general election disaster. However, the victory should quieten Corbyn’s internal critics, for now. You can follow what happens today on our live blog.

“I’m just glad that we have, together, delivered a result that Michael would be proud of” Jim McMahon

Corbyn Security Warning
Jeremy Corbyn has made his MPs targets for home-grown jihadists in the wake of the vote to back Syrian air strikes, a shadow cabinet minister has warned. This comes as Corbyn’s allies said Hilary Benn will never lead the Labour Party as it emerged almost four in five new MPs backed their leader and voted against Syrian air strikes. Meanwhile, a Labour MP has reported a Twitter user to the police over an alleged death threat aimed at him for supporting the Syrian bombing campaign.

Syria’s Future
Senior figures in the defence department warned against David Cameron saying that there are 70,000 opposition fighters in Syria willing to take on Isil, it has been claimed. Fraser Nelson asks in today’s paper whether Britain will need to work with Bashar Al-Assad to ensure stability. “Tolerating Assad, if only in the short term, will be a bitter pill. But it’s one the Prime Minister may well have to swallow,” he writes.

Cameron’s Czech Row
The growing rift between David Cameron and Europe’s poorer eastern states deepened today after the Czech Republic warned that any plan to limit benefits to EU citizens working in the UK should apply to everyone – including Britons. This comes as Cameron yesterday abandoned hopes for an early EU referendum, after Angela Merkel made clear she would not rescue his plans to curb migrants’ benefits.

New Homes For Migrants
Nearly half of all new homes built in England in the next five years are needed to cope with the influx of migrants, official figures have suggested. The Government yesterday forecast that high levels of net immigration will lead to the creation of 95,000 new households a year. Meanwhile, figures showed that Britain gave India nearly £300million in financial aid last year despite pledges by ministers to end the handouts.

Yentob Quits
Alan Yentob has quit as creative director of the BBC after being accused of interfering in the corporation’s coverage of Kids Company, the now defunct children’s children charity.

Chugger Transparency
Charities could be forced to publish details of how much they pay street “chuggers” to raise money from passers-by amid concerns they were making people “fearful” about going shopping .

Benn Demands Salmond Apology
Alex Salmond has been asked by Tony Benn’s granddaughter to retract his “deeply offensive” claim that the late Labour MP would be spinning in his grave over his son’s passionate speech in favour of air strikes.

Hilary Benn’s speech during the Syria debate was the speech of a true leader

All creatures in nature are naturally cautious. Caution is our primal survival instinct and in times of danger we instinctively waver between fight and flight, looking to the pack chief to inspire. When the spectre of combat looms it does so against our inclination for risk avoidance. Mankind looks to a leader for decision.

Hilary Benn’s speech, delivered from the heart, will stand both as one of the great orations in our Parliament and as an inspiring example of a leader stepping forward in the face of adversity. Not only was it passionate, it also came with a tempo and body language that made it spine-tingling. It was logical too; Benn didn’t rehash the Prime Minister’s thoughts, instead he made a whole new case based on hard fact. It was educational, a tour de force of Labour party and socialist thinking. Above all it was inspiring.

Jeremy Corbyn, by contrast, looked desperate, shifting uncomfortably as he searched the rafters or shot glances of despair around an enthralled chamber. His exhortation for flight had been underwhelming and now – bullied into allowing a free vote – he saw his lukewarm appeal to cower before Islamic State (Isil) dismissed by rigour and phlegm. He looked crushed. Not only did Benn’s speech deliver a massive majority for action, it probably unseated Corbyn in highlighting the Labour leader’s lacklustre performance and revealing so clearly his dwindling retinue of shabby supporters.


New Dad Mark Zuckerberg Will Give 99% of His Facebook Shares to Charitable Causes

On the so-called national day of giving (#GivingTuesday), which falls after the capitalistic rush of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Dr. Priscilla Chan, pledged to donate 99% of their Facebook stock—currently worth 45 billion big ones—to charitable purposes. On Tuesday, the couple posted a message titled “A letter to our daughter” onto Facebook (where else?), one week after the birth of their first child, a daughter named Max. “Like all parents, we want you to grow up in a world better than ours today,” they wrote. They continued:

As you begin the next generation of the Chan Zuckerberg family, we also begin the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to join people across the world to advance human potential and promote equality for all children in the next generation. Our initial areas of focus will be personalized learning, curing disease, connecting people and building strong communities.

With keywords in bold and an ample supply of statistics, their open letter reads more like a business pitch, which, in essence it is, rather than a letter to a newborn. But still, the letter isn’t void of the occasional tender aside:

Max, we love you and feel a great responsibility to leave the world a better place for you and all children. We wish you a life filled with the same love, hope and joy you give us. We can’t wait to see what you bring to this world.


Lessons From the Gruesome Munich Massacre Revelations

The gruesome revelations about the 1972 Munich Olympics terrorists castrating one of their Israeli victims is not just another horror story. There are important political and strategic implications.

The story of how a gang of Palestinian terrorists kidnapped and murdered 11 Israeli Olympic team members, one of them an American citizen, is well-known. The New York Times has now revealed additional details about how the terrorists savagely abused their victims, including castrating one of them.

The Munich attackers claimed to be members of “Black September,” as if that was some separate “extremist” group, in contrast with the supposedly more “moderate” Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). But that was a fiction created for propaganda purposes. Fatah, the largest faction of the PLO, was responsible for the massacre. One of the Munich planners, Mohammed Oudeh — better known as Abu Daoud — was quoted in the Jordanian newspaper Al-Dustur in 1972 as saying, “There is no such organization as Black September. Fatah announces its own operations under this name so that Fatah will not appear as the direct executor of the operation.”

In those days, Fatah was chaired by Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas was the number two man. Today Abbas is chairman of Fatah, of the PLO, and of the Palestinian Authority. Abu Daoud wrote in his 1999 autobiography, “From Jerusalem to Munich,” that Abbas personally arranged the funding for the Munich attack.