Unbranded and home on the range.

Yeah but you already knew this.

Greenwald could still teach you a trick or two.

Article from discussing [omg, surprise!] the media’s manipulation of certain terms in order to villify others and yet absolve yourself of the same crimes. Worth reading.


Filed under: Current Affairs, Riposte, , , ,

What Goes Around Comes Around, Baby

Well, this looks friendly!

The VATICAN!!! … of all places, my goodness … is stumping for Islamic finance?! I mean, I know some people are just plain slow, but WOW guys! come on! It took you 1400 years to get the drift? I’m all for taking time to exact proper due diligence, to make sure you know what you’re getting into but really … a millennia-and-a-half?

Oh wait never mind you were probably waiting for the ghost of Pope Urban II to cool his jets about this decision, I mean, DUH! you need money to start yet another [ill-advised] joyride into lands yonder to the East.

Vatican promotes Islamic finance in face of global crisis

Vatican says Western banks should look at rules of Islamic finance to restore confidence amongst clients.

ROME – The Vatican said banks should look at the rules of Islamic finance to restore confidence amongst their clients during the current global economic crisis.”The ethical principles on which Islamic finance is based may bring banks closer to their clients and to the true spirit which should mark every financial service”, the Vatican’s official newspaper Osservatore Romano said in an article in its latest issue.

The article argues that Western banks could use tools such as the Islamic bonds, known as sukuk, as collateral.

Sukuk may be used to fund the “car industry or the next Olympic Games in London”, it said.

The article also said that profit share, gained from sukuk, may be an alternative to the interest, underlining that the sukuk system could help automotive sector and support investments in infrastructure area.

Using the Islamic sukuk system, money would be invested in concrete projects and profit share – instead of interest earned – is distributed to clients.

The Osservatore’s editor, Giovanni Maria Vian, said that “the great religions have always had a common attention to the human dimension of the economy,” Corriere della Sera reported.




(Hat tip to Pact for the link)

sing it baby!

Hey girl, is he everything you wanted in a man?
You know I gave you the world
You had me in the palm of your hand
So why your love went away
I just can’t seem to understand
Thought it was me and you babe
Me and you until the end
But I guess I was wrongDon’t want to think about it
Don’t want to talk about it
I’m just so sick about it
Can’t believe it’s ending this way
Just so confused about it
Feeling the blues about it
I just can’t do without ya
Tell me is this fair?

Is this the way it’s really going down?
Is this how we say goodbye?
Should’ve known better when you came around
That you were gonna make me cry
It’s breaking my heart to watch you run around
‘Cause I know that you’re living a lie
That’s okay baby ’cause in time you will find…

What goes around, goes around, goes around
Comes all the way back around
What goes around, goes around, goes around
Comes all the way back around
What goes around, goes around, goes around
Comes all the way back around
What goes around, goes around, goes around
Comes all the way back around



Filed under: Current Affairs, Riposte

Your Biggest. Game. Ever. [Part One]

Just one night before the competition…
I find no rest, no sleep, just intuition.

Tomorrow I will hear Let The Games Begin…
Everyone scores, but I have to win.

I will be much faster than the speed of light…
I’m stronger than a lion in a fight.
This song, a reminder in my heart
For my people, for my country and for us

“Let the Games Begin”
– Nikki & Christina.


It’s the biggest World Cup finale ever. There has NEVER been any series as hyped as this one, ever in the history of professional sports. This is the game that’s on the minds and lips of everyone from the presidents and prime ministers, to the halls of power and business, of governments and mega-corporations, on the streets and schoolyards, in the places of worship and sanctuary, in the dance-clubs, malls and cafes, to all the way down to the small towns and fishing villages dotting the globe like sand on the beach.

The stadium is bursting at the seams, crammed with 200,000 fans and nearly a thousand media personnel, with hundreds of high-definition digital cameras broadcasting the game worldwide, where over a billion people are glued to screens large and small, fervently praying for their favorite team. Billions more are listening on the radio, on the net, or asking others about The Game.

No series has been so heavily contested such as this one, so pregnant with your victory and indeed these are the last moments before delivery. The stakes are piled sky-high: the winners go home with the Cup and with all the prestige and glory of a triumphant army coming home after a long war, the bragging rights are unparalleled, the paychecks are going to have double-digit zeros on them, your fellow compatriots will be congratulated wherever ’round the world they go and the envy of other nations will no longer be hidden. The losing team will be scorned, mocked, and spat on for years to come by their own countrymen and even families, for bringing such unbelievable ignominy and shame to the nation, until they find themselves to be outcasts.

The teams are tied but because they have more playoff series points than your team, a tie will spell a disastrous loss for your team and for your nation. Every player is calling upon their innermost hidden reserves of strength to carry them through. Sinewy muscles bulge; foreheads are riven by overloaded arteries, adrenaline flows in torrential amounts through the veins of every player.

The opposing team has pulled their goalie off their net to add another player into the mix, to throw you off-balance and to gain numbers and strength against you. And now, with the ball in your end of the field, it would be suicidal to pull your goalie off as well, and so you fight insanely for the ball, ignoring the pain in your shins and knees, never letting it out of your eyesight, madly driven to keep it from getting past your goalkeeper. You keep getting closer and closer to it, just grazing it with your knees or knocking it back down with a perfectly synchronized head-butt while it continues to be fiercely fought over.

… and then, it’s yours …

You have the ball and your deft feet handle the ball like a music conductor handles his baton in front of the Symphony Orchestra. Your team sees you with it and you hear them screaming at you to come down the left side where they’ve engaged the opposing team and cleared a path only for you, giving you a window of just a few seconds to break free of the melee. And instinctively, without a second thought, you take the ball and barrel right through that small breach and into the wide open field, streaking across the grass with one singular, overriding objective – the empty goal you see on the other side. You don’t even hear the screams of despair of the opposing team. Four-letter words and other expletives come forth like water over the Niagara Falls. Driven by desperation, they lunge forward trying to catch even a sliver of your shadow but they know all is lost. Their morale dropping faster than a bullet fired straight downwards, their faces betray them before their bodies do. Not even Superman could reach you in time, and they know this. Even you know it.

Before, what seemed to be mere lightning flashing in the distance has now coalesced into thousands upon thousands of camera flashes going off in rapid-fire succession, straining to capture The Moment, that exact point in time when your powerful thighs deliver that final blow, slamming home that ball like a hammering in the final nail in a coffin. The sportscasters lose their composure and bellow into the microphones about the lone comet they see ripping across the field unhindered, unchallenged.

But you don’t hear them or the earth-shattering, roaring crowd. The unending barrage of dazzling sparks is denied entry into your visual cortex. You block everything out. You’re in the Zone, and you’re high on the colossal, near-illegal boost of adrenaline. You’ve expertly bent the entire world to conform to your desires, all down to this every moment where everything has given way to you and your superior mastery. No one else in history has ever commanded such a clear shot at the goal, and you know no one else ever will.

This is going to be the shot heard and seen around the world, to be recounted across many generations until it becomes a permanent legend seared into the eternal, collective memory of your nation.

The crowd boils over. The thunderous screams of your name can be heard across the city. Traffic stops. Horns blow; people exchange glances and presume your impending victory. The millions-strong crowd surrounding the stadium is now a live, pulsating, and cheering monster dancing in the streets. In front of screens around the world, in front of Times Square displays and in front of radio sets in cities and villages, the tension mounts and overflows as premature cheers of euphoria erupt. Hands are raised to the sky; tears come unbidden to millions of eyes, cascading down wet cheeks. Never before has such a massive amount of humanity come together and willed for such a pivotal triumph to come into existence …

…and then, you don’t take the shot.

It’s not like you swung at the ball and missed, it’s not like you actually belted it out and it bounced off the goalpost. It’s not like some mad maverick on the opposing team intervened and stole it away from you.


You Just. Never. Took. The Shot.

“You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take.”
– Wayne Gretzky

To be continued.

Filed under: Cradle, Laced, Leadership, Quotable Quotes, Riposte

End of the road.

“We call that person who has lost his father, an orphan; and a widower that man who has lost his wife. But that man who has known the immense unhappiness of losing a friend, by what name do we call him? Here every language is silent and holds its peace in impotence.”

– Joseph Roux

[Hat tip to Afifa for providing the quote]

Filed under: Quotable Quotes, Riposte

Appreciating vs. Depreciating Assets


What am I doing wrong?

Okay, I’m tired of beating around the bush. I’m a beautiful (spectacularly beautiful) 25 year old girl. I’m articulate and classy.I’m not from New York. I’m looking to get married to a guy who makes at least half a million a year. I know how that sounds, but keep in mind that a million a year is middle class in New York City, so I don’t think I’m overreaching at all.

Are there any guys who make 500K or more on this board? Any wives? Could you send me some tips? I dated a business man who makes average around 200 – 250. But that’s where I seem to hit a roadblock. 250,000 won’t get me to central park west. I know a woman in my yoga class who was married to an investment banker and lives in Tribeca, and she’s not as pretty as I am, nor is she a great genius. So what is she doing right? How do I get to her level?

Here are my questions specifically:

– Where do you single rich men hang out? Give me specifics- bars, restaurants, gyms, etc.

– What are you looking for in a mate? Be honest guys, you won’t hurt my feelings

– Is there an age range I should be targeting (I’m 25)?

– Why are some of the women living lavish lifestyles on the upper east side so plain? I’ve seen really ‘plain jane’ boring types who have nothing to offer married to incredibly wealthy guys. I’ve seen drop dead gorgeous girls in singles bars in the east village. What’s the story there?

– Jobs I should look out for? Everyone knows – lawyer, investment banker, doctor. How much do those guys really make? And where do they hang out? Where do the hedge fund guys hang out?

– How you decide marriage vs. just a girlfriend? I am looking for MARRIAGE ONLY.

Please hold your insults – I’m putting myself out there in an honest way. Most beautiful women are superficial; at least I’m being up front about it. I wouldn’t be searching for these kind of guys if I wasn’t
able to match them – in looks, culture, sophistication, and keeping a nice home and hearth.

* it’s NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID: 432279810

THE ANSWER: Dear Pers-431649184:

I read your posting with great interest and have thought meaningfully about your dilemma. I offer the following analysis of your predicament. Firstly, I’m not wasting your time, I qualify as a guy who fits your bill; that is I make more than $500K per year. That said here’s how I see it.

Your offer, from the prospective of a guy like me, is plain and simple a crappy business deal. Here’s why. Cutting through all the B.S., what you suggest is a simple trade: you bring your looks to the party and I bring my money. Fine, simple. But here’s the rub, your looks will fade and my money will likely continue into perpetuity…in fact, it is very likely that my income increases but it is an absolute certainty that you won’t be getting any more beautiful!

So, in economic terms you are a depreciating asset and I am an earning asset. Not only are you a depreciating asset, your depreciation accelerates! Let me explain, you’re 25 now and will likely stay pretty hot for the next 5 years, but less so each year. Then the fade begins in earnest. By 35 stick a fork in you! So in Wall Street terms, we would call you a trading position, not a buy and hold…hence the rub…marriage. It doesn’t make good business sense to “buy you” (which is what you’re asking) so I’d rather lease. In case you think I’m being cruel, I would say the following. If my money were to go away, so would you, so when your beauty fades I need an out. It’s as simple as that. So a deal that makes sense is dating, not marriage.

Separately, I was taught early in my career about efficient markets. So, I wonder why a girl as “articulate, classy and spectacularly beautiful” as you has been unable to find your sugar daddy. I find it hard to believe that if you are as gorgeous as you say you are that the $500K hasn’t found you, if not only for a tryout.

By the way, you could always find a way to make your own money and then we wouldn’t need to have this difficult conversation.

With all that said, I must say you’re going about it the right way. Classic “pump and dump.”

I hope this is helpful, and if you want to enter into some sort of lease, let me know.

Filed under: Ghetto, Riposte

Branding the Maverick

Q: What do great personalities like Lincoln, Reagan, and Gorbachev all have in common?
Or Johnny Depp, Sean Connery, or Gene Hackman?

A: They were all just like me. Wink

Even though I don’t do these usually because I dislike to be constrained by popular, pre-set parameters and definitions, I took the Jung Typology test recently and here’s what it spit out:

Apparently I’m an ENFJ.

ENFJs are the benevolent ‘pedagogues’ of humanity. They have tremendous charisma by which many are drawn into their nurturant tutelage and/or grand schemes. Many ENFJs have tremendous power to manipulate others with their phenomenal interpersonal skills and unique salesmanship. But it’s usually not meant as manipulation — ENFJs generally believe in their dreams, and see themselves as helpers and enablers, which they usually are. ENFJs are global learners. They see the big picture. The ENFJs focus is expansive. Some can juggle an amazing number of responsibilities or projects simultaneously. Many ENFJs have tremendous entrepreneurial ability. ENFJs are, by definition, Js, with whom we associate organization and decisiveness. But they don’t resemble the SJs or even the NTJs in organization of the environment nor occasional recalcitrance. ENFJs are organized in the arena of interpersonal affairs. Their offices may or may not be cluttered, but their conclusions (reached through feelings) about people and motives are drawn much more quickly and are more resilient than those of their NFP counterparts. ENFJs know and appreciate people. Like most NFs, (and Feelers in general), they are apt to neglect themselves and their own needs for the needs of others. They have thinner psychological boundaries than most, and are at risk for being hurt or even abused by less sensitive people. ENFJs often take on more of the burdens of others than they can bear.

TRADEMARK: “The first shall be last”

This refers to the open-door policy of ENFJs. One ENFJ colleague always welcomes me into his office regardless of his own circumstances. If another person comes to the door, he allows them to interrupt our conversation with their need. While discussing that need, the phone rings and he stops to answer it. Others drop in with a ‘quick question.’ I finally get up, go to my office and use the call waiting feature on the telephone. When he hangs up, I have his undivided attention!

Extraverted Feeling

Extraverted Feeling rules the ENFJ’s psyche. In the sway of this rational function, these folks are predisposed to closure in matters pertaining to people, and especially on behalf of their beloved. As extraverts, their contacts are wide ranging. Face-to-face relationships are intense, personable and warm, though they may be so infrequently achieved that intimate friendships are rare.

Introverted iNtuition

Like their INFJ cousins, ENFJs are blessed through introverted intuition with clarity of perception in the inner, unconscious world. Dominant Feeling prefers to find the silver lining in even the most beggarly perceptions of those in their expanding circle of friends and, of course, in themselves. In less balanced individuals, such mitigation of the unseemly eventually undermines the ENFJ’s integrity and frequently their good name. In healthier individuals, deft use of this awareness of the inner needs and desires of others enables this astute type to win friends, influence people, and avoid compromising entanglements. The dynamic nature of their intuition moves ENFJs from one project to another with the assurance that the next one will be perfect, or much more nearly so than the last. ENFJs are continually looking for newer and better solutions to benefit their extensive family, staff, or organization.

Extraverted Sensing

Sensing is extraverted. ENFJs can manage details, particularly those necessary to implement the prevailing vision. These data have, however, a magical flexible quality. Something to be bought can be had for a song; the same something is invaluable when it’s time to sell. (We are not certain, but we suspect that such is the influence of the primary function.) This wavering of sensory perception is made possible by the weaker and less mature status with which the tertiary is endowed.

Introverted Thinking

Introverted Thinking is least apparent and most enigmatic in this type. In fact, it often appears only when summoned by Feeling. At times only in jest, but in earnest if need be, Thinking entertains as logical only those conclusions which support Feeling’s values. Other scenarios can be shown invalid or at best significantly inferior. Such “Thinking in the service of Feeling” has the appearance of logic, but somehow it never quite adds up.

Introverted Thinking is frequently the focus of the spiritual quest of ENFJs. David’s lengthiest psalm, 119, pays it homage. “Law,” “precept,” “commandment,” “statute:” these essences of inner thinking are the mysteries of Deity for which this great Feeler’s soul searched.

Read the rest here.

Filed under: Cradle, Leadership, Riposte

Selfish and Full Of It.

Do you want to be Selfish, Narcissistic, Loaded, Greedy, Full Of It and yet … still come out on top of the game after it’s all over? Don’t screw your face and squirm in your seat. Its not like this is the first time you’re being asked an existentialist question. Think fast, cut to the chase and make a decision. Just answer the question man.

Yes, or No?

If you’re trying to be momma’s boy or a goody-two-shoes and you answered No, then pack your bags and get outta here. You’re a spineless piece of phlegm with no idea of how to prioritize your own interests above that of others. Adieu. And if you’re sitting on the fence and unsure, then you can join Club No as well, and leave. Thanks for coming and don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Ciao.

Now, as for all of you greedy and esurient little loan-sharks who shamelessly said Yes – all right! Lets do lunch.

Here’s the story:

Turns out the Central Bank has a Platinum 5-star plan for investors, with a global reach. Even the lowest-performing stock in their diverse array of portfolios has a return rate of 70% (SEVENTY) compounded annually on the original principal. You can add to the principal amount whenever you like and they adjust the returns by back-dating it to the point of deposit of the original principal.

I checked out their referral program and it is unbelievably out of this world – for every investor you refer to the Bank, you get paid a high double-digit percentage of whatever the Bank pays to the new investor, as an absolute. Meaning the new investor you referred to them will make 100% of the stated ROI on whatever portfolio he or she chose, but your referral payout is on top of that, not cut from it. If the one you referred to the Bank refers others as well, then you not only make a nice percentage off of those new inductees, but you are paid out the original percentage of the new amount that your original referral is now making on his / her own referrals.

If you’re interested in prime real estate, they have a wide variety of portfolios in that sector as well. All of their locales are very well placed and pristine. We’re talking about lush foliage, close to rivers and oceans, breath-taking scenery, stuff folks have never dreamed of.

They also have a preferred partner programs for lenders and underwriters. I’ve personally never seen anything like this.

So, now you want to know what kind of connections I had to go through to get the scoop on such a deal. Did I have to sell my soul? Probably. But greed is a virtue. Even excessive, rampant greed. It can be used as a force for good.

What am I on about?

Well if you think about it, on Judgement Day you’re going to be having a bad day. Stress, like you’ve never known it in your entire life, haha. Sweat is going to be pouring out of you by the buckets. Your hair is going to be growing white at supersonic speeds. You’re going to wish you could go back into your life and just start pumping out good deeds like crazy. I’m not talking about cranking the the faucet up full blast. I’m not even talking about good deeds like the water coming over the Niagara Falls, hell no I’m talking about good deeds like a waterfall the size of the Pacific Ocean, packin’ it on some celestial brand of steroids.

And your single, motivating factor? Greed. You heard me, damn right. Don’t deny it – denial is the most easiest and predictable of all human emotions.

You’re greedy because you want Allah’s Mercy. And you hope that by His Mercy you’ll be entered into Jannatul Firdaus al a3la.

All those good deeds you’ll do with that smile spread like butter across your face, that sincerity, that cute and endearing charm, forgiving others if they wrong you, holding your tongue and hands from undesirable speech and actions, that oh-so pure selflessness … all just a facade for your Greed to to hide behind. You’ll be lying there at night wondering what your bottom line looks like. Billions upon trillions of hasanaat just piling up. And all of it compounded at a factor of 1:70 or more.

Now go back and read it all again, from the start.

You only have this one life, so get going.

Filed under: Laced, Leadership, Riposte

The myth of Muslim support for terror

Ballen writes:

Only 46 percent of Americans think that “bombing and other attacks intentionally aimed at civilians” are “never justified,” while 24 percent believe these attacks are “often or sometimes justified.”

Contrast those numbers with 2006 polling results from the world’s most-populous Muslim countries – Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nigeria. Terror Free Tomorrow, the organization I lead, found that 74 percent of respondents in Indonesia agreed that terrorist attacks are “never justified”; in Pakistan, that figure was 86 percent; in Bangladesh, 81 percent.

See the original article from CSMonitor here and the Huffington Post’s take on it here.

Filed under: Current Affairs, Riposte

False Advertising?

What is up with Muslims these days? The latest craze seems to be slapping the Halal label onto anything and everything in order to attract business.

Before I continue, I’ll post the following definition of False Advertising from Wikipedia:

False advertising (or more mildly, deceptive advertising) is an act of deliberately misleading a potential client about a product, service or a company in general by reporting false or misrepresenting information or data in advertising or other promotional materials. False advertising is a type of fraud, and may also be considered a hoax.

False advertising is often a crime. In some countries advertising practices (including “truth in advertising”) are regulated by a government authority (FTC in the USA), in others the advertising industry is self-regulated and professional associations combat false advertising.To decrease their legal liability for deceptive marketing, many companies cover their tracks using small print. In radio, the equivalent is fast talk, which likewise is nearly impossible to hear or understand. In either case, this often allows false advertisers to continue their tactics without prosecution.

I was coming back from Al-Falah tonight and decided to stop at the plaza on Brittania where they have Hot n’ Roll and City Line Pizza.

So, I walk into the pizza store, and the owners are Muslim. So I’m standing there trying to decide what to order, and I notice one of the menus on top of the glass display said:



— and other stuff —

So I kinda scrunched up my face and I ask the guy how the hell do you have Halal Bacon??! And he goes “oh, its made out of chicken…. and so is the halal ham.”

So then I point to one of the meat slices and another with pepperoni, assuming they were halal and asked him for those and he goes “oh these arent halal”

So I asked him “Well, do you have any halal meat slices right now?”

And he goes “no sorry not right now.”

So, I walked out. WTH??!! Halal ham? halal bacon?

And then back in December, at RIS … the dude from UM Financial gets up on the stage and screams “We can give you Halal INTEREST!!!”

And the other day a buddy was telling me of some halal beer drink.

What is WRONG with these people?

Halal ham?
Halal bacon?
Halal beer?
Halal interest?

why stop there?

Introducing the all New and IMPROVED HALAL HARAAM!!!


Filed under: Exhaust, Ghetto, Riposte

The 411 on (Muslim) guys who want to get married.

So, I was being asked by some women about characteristics of guys who want to get married (desperately or not). I’ve been around for a while, traveled the world over, and I’ve found some pretty common items wherever I go. Be it in North America, Europe, the Mideast, whatever. Please bear in mind some of the following are trade secrets.

Guys who want to get married, desperately or not, will do the following:

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Ghetto, Laced, Riposte, Women