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Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Florida
Home country: USA
Current location: McKinney, TX
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 25,109

About Me

Small business owner, former professor and university administrator... former expat (lived in UAE for 10 years).

Journal Archives

How to get arrested in the UAE

Do some dirty dancing
Ever thought your dance moves ought to be illegal? Then head to Dubai, where they just very well might be. Unless you're at a licensed club or in the privacy of your hotel room then dancing is considered indecent and provocative and could get you arrested. During Ramadan you won't even find a dancefloor to throw some shapes on risk-free - dancing, loud music and live music are forbidden during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, so nightclubs usually close and all the bands go on holiday.

Give someone the finger
Back home it's just a bit rude but making insulting gestures in Dubai is regarded as obscene and totally unacceptable – as 56-year-old Brit Simon Andrew discovered in 2010 when he was accused of showing an aviation student his middle finger during a row and was arrested. He denied flipping the bird but had his passport confiscated for eight months as bail surety. It has been known for offenders to get a six-month sentence for such an act and some have been deported.

Have sex on the beach
For a surefire way to wind up behind bars, break a couple of laws at once. Because of their strict laws about indecency, public sex is beyond unacceptable. Do it with someone you're not married to – a crime that entails prosecution, imprisonment and/or a fine and deportation – and you're firing on all cylinders. Michelle Palmer, 36, of Oakham, Rutland, and Vince Acors, 34, of Bromley, London, did just that in 2009 and were banged up for three months before being deported, as well as fined 1,000 dirhams (about £180).

Snog in a restaurant
Don't assume you have to go all the way to infringe on their decency regulations – the law extends to kissing and even holding hands, unless you're married. British marketing executive Ayman Najafi and Charlotte Adams – both in their 20s - were arrested and accused of public indecency after an Emirati woman claimed they exchanged a passionate kiss in a restaurant. They were given a one-month jail sentence for public indecency and illegal drinking, fined 1,000 dirhams, then deported. The pair maintain it was merely a peck on the cheek... http://en-maktoob.news.yahoo.com/how-to-get-arrested-in-the-uae.html;_ylt=AkDlMpxzF3pL3_7OkISnirW_auR_;_ylu=X3oDMTU0aDduM2x2BGNjb2RlA2N0LmMEbWl0A01vc3RQb3B1bGFySG9tZU1peGVkTGlzdARwa2cDZjU5MDQ3ODUtOTE0MC0zZWM3LWEwMjUtNDAwODkzZTg5NTJjBHBvcwM3BHNlYwNNZWRpYUJMaXN0TWl4ZWRNb3N0UG9wdWxhckNBVGVtcAR2ZXIDYWM0YjcyOTItYTE4YS0xMWUxLWFmZWItN2FjMTZhZThiMzE0;_ylg=X3oDMTJqN2QzdHFnBGludGwDeGUEbGFuZwNlbi1hZQRwc3RhaWQDZTZhZGIzOGEtMjQ1My0zZTI5LWEyMmQtZjkzMmYxOGEwNDZiBHBzdGNhdAMEcHQDc3RvcnlwYWdl;_ylv=3

Dubai cyber cops gag Facebook, Twitter accounts

Even worse, the internet companies went along with it...

Dubai’s cyber cops have shutdown a number of abusive or defamatory Facebook and Twitter accounts this year, UAE newspaper The National reported on Monday.

The number of online crimes investigated by Dubai Police soared by 124%, from 266 in 2010 to 596 last year, the newspaper added.

There have already been 179 cases investigated in the first quarter of 2012.

Facebook and Twitter agreed to close the 15 accounts, three last week, following a series of online police patrols, the report added... http://en-maktoob.news.yahoo.com/dubai-cyber-cops-gag-facebook--twitter-accounts.html;_ylt=Ahy.OR_42n6l58rOv1yxOeq_auR_;_ylu=X3oDMTU0ODYxaHJtBGNjb2RlA2N0LmMEbWl0A01vc3RQb3B1bGFySG9tZU1peGVkTGlzdARwa2cDMDVhZjQwNjktMzY1My0zZDM1LWE1YmYtNTg2OGE0Nzg5MzZlBHBvcwM5BHNlYwNNZWRpYUJMaXN0TWl4ZWRNb3N0UG9wdWxhckNBVGVtcAR2ZXIDZWYwZmVmNDEtYTMyMi0xMWUxLWI3ZTctOTdlMzU4ZTI4N2E1;_ylg=X3oDMTJqN2QzdHFnBGludGwDeGUEbGFuZwNlbi1hZQRwc3RhaWQDZTZhZGIzOGEtMjQ1My0zZTI5LWEyMmQtZjkzMmYxOGEwNDZiBHBzdGNhdAMEcHQDc3RvcnlwYWdl;_ylv=3

If it takes decades, you can't send anyone the bill- follow the money

A. Gulf Coast Operations, Response, and Policy Consortium

The Gulf Coast Operations, Response, and Policy Consortium (GCORP) “establishes a group of institutions within Texas that will jointly conduct research to address the unprecedented environmental damage created by [the Deepwater Horizon] oil spill. Based on their existing wealth of data from the Gulf environment, consortium institutions can immediately begin providing information to scientists, policy makers, industry, and other stakeholder groups affected by this spill.”

GCORP members include:

Bush School of Government and Public Service
Harte Research Institute, Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
Texas A&M University
Texas A&M University - Galveston Campus
The University of Texas at Austin
University of Texas at Austin - Energy Institute
University of Texas Marine Science Institute
Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ocean Observing System
LBJ School of Public Affairs
Texas A&M College of Education and Human Development
Texas A&M University College of Geosciences
Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
Texas Engineering Experiment Station
Texas State University
Texas Tech University, Institute of Environmental and Human Health
The University of Texas at Austin Cockrell School of Engineering
University of Houston Clear Lake - Environmental Institute of Houston
University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences http://vpr.tamu.edu/funding/gulfresearch

Big oil playing games again...

Boeing will outsource key Dreamliner components to the UAE

So much for American jobs... major sections of the Dreamliner (787) will be built by near slave labor from the sub-continent in the UAE.

Mubadala Aerospace yesterday announced a US$1 billion (Dh3.67bn) contract to build major sections for the Boeing 777 and 787 Dreamliner airliners at its Strata Manufacturing plant in Al Ain.

The announcement, which dominated yesterday's Global Aerospace Summit in Abu Dhabi, makes Mubadala the Arab world's first direct supplier of composites to the US aircraft maker. Mubadala Aerospace is a division of Mubadala Development, a strategic investment company owned by the Abu Dhabi Government.

"Boeing and Mubadala Aerospace announce a 10-year direct contract for Strata Manufacturing, Mubadala Aerospace's advanced composite aerostructures facility in Al Ain, to produce commercial composite aerostructures for the 777 and 787 Dreamliner," the companies said.. http://www.thenational.ae/thenationalconversation/industry-insights/aviation/mubadala-in-1bn-deal-as-supplier-to-boeing

Our Oceans Are Sick- Are Jellyfish the Canary in the Coal Mine?

As a Floridian, I have lived near the ocean my entire life. I can even remember as a kid the rare occurrence of seeing a Portuguese Man of War and staring at the odd jelly fish that washed ashore occasionally. Fast forward to today. In the last year I have visited several of the world's tropical oceans... Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, Indian Ocean, Persian Gulf... what I found there was shocking. In addition to an explosion of plastic rubbish and trash, there is an explosion of jelly fish that is choking the ocean of our world.

Not just a weird coincidence, scientists have also begun to take notice: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jun/12/jellyfish-plankton-ocean-acid

On my trip to the Musandam in Oman (one of the most remote places in the world), the waters were absolutely full of jellyfish as far the eye could see. I couldn't even dive without being in almost constant contact with them. Fortunately for me, I don't have any allergies to the stings. I cam out unscathed, however our oceans are in much worse shape and drowning in the slimy jellies.

After the Arab Spring: Emerging power structures 'will be worse' : Review of John Bradley's New Book

The Arab Spring has met its Cassandra. While countless analysts and observers gushed that an era of democracy was at hand, John Bradley sat down to write a book that defies almost every assumption underlying the conventional wisdom about the Arab Spring.
Bradley believes that his worst fears have already been realised. In his view, the liberal vanguard of the revolts in Tunisia and Egypt has been overwhelmed by the Islamists, who have begun radically reordering their societies for the worse. (Bradley calls Egypt today an "action replay of Iran in 1979", when Islamists pushed out liberals and leftists after the revolution.) He predicts that the same thing will happen in Syria, asserts that Bahrain crushed its revolt with Saudi assistance and tacit US approval, and maintains that the Libyan and Yemeni revolts were dominated by tribes and Islamists from the start...

This is what has happened in those countries in which the dictatorial regimes were overthrown. To be sure, the Islamists have the upper hand in their growing confrontation with liberals. Islam, upon which their movements claim to be built, remains the single most powerful component of identity for many Muslims, and the main focus of their loyalties. And, as Bradley demonstrates, unlike the frequently elitist liberals, Islamists have been laying the socio-cultural groundwork for their political decisions for decades by working among the masses...

But at least the battle lines have been drawn. Liberals and Islamists will no longer be bedfellows in those Arab countries that have liberated themselves from tyranny. A political fight that should have taken place a long time ago has finally begun. Hopefully, whichever party emerges triumphant will respect democratic norms and avoid emulating its predecessor's approach to most political opponents. http://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/books/after-the-arab-spring-emerging-power-structures-will-be-worse

An interesting review of Bradley's new book about the Arab Spring.

So Mitt, How Did That 'Cheezy Grits' Strategy Work For Ya?

Recipe for Cheezy Grits

2 cups of organic milk* from cows at the Romney family compound (*not milked by an “illegals,” because Mitt’s running for president)
2 cups of “Bling h2o” water
1 1/2 teaspoons of Korean Oyster Bamboo salt
1 cup of 'old fashioned' Bain Capital-owned grits brand
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground Madagascar black peppercorns
4 tablespoons of unsalted butter made from milk at the Romney family compound
4 ounces of high grade sharp Wisconsin cheddar from a family friend’s cattle ranch
2 lessons in southern vernacular (optional)

Directions: Cook grits in water and milk mixture. Stir in remaining ingredients until “cheesy.” Serve immediately, unless voters and media seem to cringe every time you say “cheesy grits” and “y’all.”

Yields: Enough for southern GOP voters who aren’t offended by the former governor’s lazy pandering, or put off by the amount of money the campaign spent, to stomach casting a primary ballot for Romney http://loop21.com/mitt-romney-cheesy-grits-recipe

'The blackest lie in history': Republican congressional candidate says the Holocaust never happened

A congressional candidate running as a Republican in the upcoming Illinois primary says the 'Holocaust never happened.'

Arthur Jones, 64, who organizes neo-Nazi events around Adolf Hitler’s birthday, hopes to be the Republican candidate chosen to run against
Rep. Dan Lipinski in Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District.

‘As far as I’m concerned, the Holocaust is nothing more than an international extortion racket by the Jews,’ Jones said...

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2108386/Blackest-lie-history-congressional-candidate-describes-Holocaust.html#ixzz1nrYL1mrj

The Republican party needs to disown this douchebag ASAP! However, I won't take the bet on whether they actually would...

Oil windfall boosts Gulf spending

The windfall from oil exports in recent months may have given the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states enough cushion to enable them to carry on with their development projects and investment ventures for months in the likely event of another recession hitting the global economy, experts say.

International oil prices have surged nearly $40 (Dh146.92) a barrel in the last six months due to the West's tensions with Iran over its controversial nuclear programme and supply concerns, given the unrest in several oil exporting countries in the Middle East... "The crude exporting countries know very well that the windfall gains do not last for long. This has happened before and will happen again. The countries may have already planned how they are going to use their surplus from oil revenues. In my view, much of the surplus funds would be deployed in developmental projects and will get invested through their sovereign wealth funds," Amerah added... http://gulfnews.com/business/oil-gas/oil-windfall-boosts-gulf-spending-1.987736

Looks like we will all be waiting a long time for a GCC coup.

Truncated Early Voting Will Give Newt the Edge in Florida

Voting this year only began this Saturday... right at the time Newt has his maximum momentum coming out of SC. Keep in mind that traditionally about 1/3 of voters will vote early in Florida.

Early voting in the Republican presidential primary is set to begin throughout Florida the same day South Carolina holds its primary.

Voters in all 67 Florida counties will be able to go to the polls Saturday and casts ballots... http://www.gainesville.com/article/20120120/WIRE/120129971/1034?Title=Early-voting-in-GOP-primary-to-begin-across-Fla-&tc=ar
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