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Douglas Carpenter

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Corry (Erie County), Pennsylvania 16407
Home country: USA
Current location: Saipan, U.S. Commonweath of the Northern Mariana Islands
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2005, 08:56 PM
Number of posts: 19,599

Journal Archives

Wall Street Journal: Muslim Leaders Condemn Attack, Warn on Anti-Islamic Sentiment in Europe

by Joe Parkinson for the Wall Street Journal

Muslim leaders strongly condemned the deadly attack on offices of a French satirical magazine but at the same time, some cautioned that the rise of anti-Islamic sentiment in Europe risked strengthening support for jihadists across the continent.

In the capitals of Muslim nations, government ministers took to the airwaves to voice sympathy and solidarity with France after gunmen killed 12 people in the assault on the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo, a magazine targeted in the past for cartoons that some Muslims found offensive

In Europe and the U.S., Muslim leaders called for tolerance while some mosques stepped up security in case of reprisal attacks. On social media sites Twitter and Facebook, Islamic organizations denounced the violence, with many using the top-trending #CharlieHebdo to express solidarity.

In Cairo, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said Egypt “stands in France’s corner” in a fight against terrorism that threatens global security and stability. That message was echoed by the governments of Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and in Iraq, where authorities are waging war against extremist group Islamic State with expanding air and ground support from a U.S.-led international coalition.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas denounced the attack as terrorism in a message to French President François Hollande, and said such “heinous crimes” are condemned by morality and religion.


Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Thu Jan 8, 2015, 12:39 PM (6 replies)

Islamic Leaders Condemn Paris Attack, Some Warn on Backlash

By Bloomberg News Jan 8, 2015 2:58 PM PT

Leaders from Muslim countries and organizations joined the worldwide condemnation of today’s deadly attack on a magazine office in Paris, and said it shouldn’t be associated with the Islamic faith.

The following is a roundup of some of the reactions.

* Al-Azhar, the thousand-year-old seat of religious learning in Cairo that’s respected by Muslims around the world, referred to the attack as a criminal act, saying that “Islam denounces any violence,” according to Egypt’s state news agency MENA.

* The Organization of the Islamic Conference strongly condemned the attack. A spokesperson for the OIC’s Islamophobia Observatory in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia said that violence and radicalism are “biggest enemies of Islam.”

* The French Council of the Muslim Religion condemned the “barbaric” attack and said that first thoughts are with the victims and their families. It also called on “all those committed to the values of the Republic and democracy to avoid provocations that only serve to throw oil on the fire,” and on French Muslims to “exercise the utmost vigilance against possible manipulations from extremist groups.”

* Indonesia, the world’s most-populous Muslim nation, “condemns the attack” and “sends condolences to the government and people of France,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

* “Egypt stands by France in confronting terrorism, an international phenomenon that targets the world’s security and stability and which requires coordinated international efforts to eradicate,” said Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry.

read more reactions from several countries across the region:

Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Thu Jan 8, 2015, 11:04 AM (8 replies)

CNN: Becky Anderson reports from Abu Dhabi on regional reaction to the killing of 12 people in Paris

including four cartoonists at satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.


Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Thu Jan 8, 2015, 09:55 AM (0 replies)

Here’s Why the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement Is Just Plain Wrong By Robert Reich

First some background. We used to think about trade policy as a choice between “free trade” and “protectionism.” Free trade meant opening our borders to products made elsewhere. Protectionism meant putting up tariffs and quotas to keep them out.

In the decades after World War II, America chose free trade. The idea was that each country would specialize in goods it produced best and at least cost. That way, living standards would rise here and abroad. New jobs would be created to take the place of jobs that were lost. And communism would be contained.

For three decades, free trade worked. It was a win-win-win.

It’s no longer free trade versus protectionism. Big corporations and Wall Street want some of both.

But they want less protection of consumers, workers, small investors, and the environment, because these interfere with their profits. So they’ve been seeking trade rules that allow them to override these protections.

Even better for global companies, the tribunal can order compensation for any lost profits found to result from a nation’s regulations. Philip Morris is using a similar provision against Uruguay (the provision appears in a bilateral trade treaty as easily challenge any U.S. government regulation they claim unfairly diminishes their profits – say, a regulation between Uruguay and Switzerland), claiming that Uruguay’s strong anti-smoking regulations unfairly diminish the company’s profits.

Anyone believing the TPP is good for Americans take note: The foreign subsidiaries of U.S.-based corporations could just protecting American consumers from unsafe products or unhealthy foods, investors from fraudulent securities or predatory lending, workers from unsafe working conditions, taxpayers from another bailout of Wall Street, or the environment from toxic emissions.

read full article:

Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Wed Jan 7, 2015, 12:54 PM (14 replies)

We might have autism backwards: What “broken mirror” and “broken mentalizing” theories could have


This article does not relate or deal with the cause - But with a basic explanation of what it is - The article which was published in salon.com was taken from a rather complex academic work on neuroscience called - “The Myth of Mirror Neurons: The Real Neuroscience of Communication and Cognition” by Gregory Hickok

We might have autism backwards: What “broken mirror” and “broken mentalizing” theories could have wrong

The dominant autism theories -- assuming a lack of or diminished social sensitivity -- need to be reexamined

by Gregory Hickok

Copyright © 2014 - Gregory Hickok is a professor of cognitive science at University of California, Irvine, where he directs the Center for Language Science and the Auditory and Language Neuroscience Lab. The article is fairly long and technical but well worth the read.

(Credit: Ollyy, vitstudio via Shutterstock/Salon)

We might have autism backwards: What “broken mirror” and “broken mentalizing” theories could have wrong

The dominant autism theories -- assuming a lack of or diminished social sensitivity -- need to be reexamined

by Gregory Hickok

Copyright © 2014 - Gregory Hickok is a professor of cognitive science at University of California, Irvine, where he directs the Center for Language Science and the Auditory and Language Neuroscience Lab. The article is fairly long and technical but well worth the read.


"Here my focus is more circumscribed. I restrict the discussion to the behavioral symptoms of autism and (neuro)cognitive models for explaining those symptoms. I highlight two of the most influential hypotheses, the broken mirror theory and the broken mentalizing theory (or broken theory of mind theory—I use the terms interchangeably). Further, I have no intention of providing a thorough review of the host of experiments that have investigated the range of abilities and disabilities in autism or even provide much depth in my discussion of the cognitive theories themselves. Please consult any of the many primary sources for a broader view.

Instead I have two main goals. One is to address the basic mirror neuron-based account of autism because the theory has been rather influential and a lot is at stake given how many lives autism touches. The other goal is to highlight an alternative perspective on autism in the same way that (I hope) I’ve been able to highlight alternative perspectives on mirror neuron function, embodied cognition, and imitation. Specifically, I’m going to suggest the possibility that the dominant neurocognitive theories of autism, which assume that behavioral deficits result from lack of or diminished social sensitivity, have it wrong and in fact have it backward."


"“Deficit theories” of dysfunction are reasonable and intuitive. If an individual fails to respond normally to sound, it’s a good bet that the person has a diminished capacity to process and hear sound. He simply isn’t capable of perceiving the signal. Likewise, if another individual fails to respond normally to social stimulation, it’s a reasonable bet that the person has a diminished capacity to process social information. But consider the following thought experiment. Imagine you had a stadium rock concert–type sound system hooked up to your living room television and you attempted to watch the evening news with the sound cranked up all the way. Most likely, you would cover your ears and quickly leave. If you forced yourself to stay, you would run into at least one of three problems as you tried to listen and watch. One, the physical pain would be so extreme that you wouldn’t be able to concentrate on the message. Two, attempts to dampen the sound and ease the pain, say by sticking your fingers in your ears, would filter out many of the fine details you need to hear normally. You would perceive less well. Three, if you did manage to listen, the extreme volume would excite so many nerve fibers that it would drown out the details of the signal itself and again you would miss many things. Excess can be as detrimental to normal function as paucity."


"I agree that neither theory is satisfactory, but I’m not convinced that more subtle distinctions between types of mirror system or theory of mind operations will fare better. The problem, I suspect, is hidden in the fact that all of this discussion still centers on ideas about what is lacking in autism. Autistic people have no mirror system or no theory of mind or no empathy or no ability to process social information. These are deficiency or hypofunction theories; a good first guess, but not the only possibility. And given that they haven’t had all that much success, maybe it’s time to focus some research effort on a theory based on excess or hypersensitivity. Perhaps autistics don’t experience a socially numbed world but rather a socially intense world."

This is a somewhat long and complex article but I STRONGLY recommend reading it in full:


Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Sun Jan 4, 2015, 10:47 AM (4 replies)

Does ANYONE here SERIOUSLY believe that DU is full of paid trolls?

It is no secret that there are people who work for candidates and causes who post on Internet forums to advance their candidates and causes. But there seems to be a suggestion from some quarters that there are a number of people here who either work for corporate interest to advance a pro-corporate Democratic agenda or who secretly work for the Republicans to try to suppress voter turnout by undermining support for the Democratic Party and its leadership.

Is it not possible that people can be wrong for free? Maybe there are some paid trolls - But I doubt it. At least not very many.

Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Sun Jan 4, 2015, 10:17 AM (223 replies)

Governor Mario Cuomo (1984) complete speech DNC


Part 2 of 4

Part 3 of 4

part 4 of 4:

Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Thu Jan 1, 2015, 08:43 PM (9 replies)

Obama messes up couples wedding - couple is thrilled - video

Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Thu Jan 1, 2015, 03:22 PM (1 replies)

Find the furthest city on earth from your place or anywhere else.

Have you ever wondered what cities are furthest away? What Country really is on the opposite side of the world to you? Use Furthest City to search any world city with a population of over 100k.


Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Sat Dec 27, 2014, 05:26 AM (19 replies)

Fixing Autism Research by John Elder Robison

Autism researchers have published thousands of papers in recent years. With those numbers, you’d think we’d all be rejoicing over great progress. Yet many people—especially autistic adults—are frustrated by how little benefit has actually materialized. Why?

The simple answer is, we’re studying the wrong things. We’re sinking millions into the search for a “cure,” even though we now know that autism is not a disease but rather a neurological difference, one that cripples some of us while bringing a few others extraordinary gifts. Most of us live with a mix of exceptionality and disability. I know I do.

We can remediate the crippling conditions that accompany autism. Anxiety, depression, seizure disorders, sleep disorders, and intestinal distress are the big ones, but there are more..

We can offer engineering solutions to the things autistic people can’t do naturally. Some formerly nonverbal autistics talk through handheld tablets, and make friends with computer assistants like Siri. We’re now seeing machines that read expressions even when we can’t. Computers can improve anyone’s quality of life, but we stand to benefit more than most from applied technology.

So how might this change in research direction come about? For one thing, we can put autistic people in charge. The fact is, researchers have treated autism as a childhood disability, when in fact it’s a lifelong difference. If childhood is a quarter of the life span, then three-quarters of the autistic population are adults. Doesn’t it make sense that some of us would want to take a role in shaping the course of research that affects us?

If you’re a researcher with an interest in autism—and you want to really make a difference—open a dialogue with autistic people. Ask what they want and need, and listen.

John Elder Robison is a professor at the College of William & Mary and the author of Look Me in the Eye.


Posted by Douglas Carpenter | Fri Dec 19, 2014, 04:47 AM (8 replies)
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