INTERESTING: The Acton site emphasizes the personal component of charity

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A German friend this afternoon was recounting this story to me — he too is obsessed with how to reduce Iraqi anger. But the part he emphasized that I had missed originally was how significant it was to Germans to know that these packages were sent by ordinary Americans. It wasn’t the government sending government aid; it was American volunteers taking time to personalize an act of giving.

CARE has given up the CARE Package. So too has it moved far from the individual-driven model of giving that marked its birth. But I wonder how current victims of war would react to a repeat of 1945-giving. A related idea has been taken up by a 10-year old from New Jersey. But what if every city in America selected sister cities throughout Afghanistan and Iraq, and individual volunteers from the US repeated what our parents and grandparents did 60 years ago?

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I found this interesting in that it echos that there HAS to be a personal element of charity for that charity to be effective.

So, what does it make one do?

TECHNOLOGY: Ubuntu Open Week

Ubuntu Open Week

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Jono Bacon writes “Next week (Mon 27th Nov 2006 – Sat 2nd Dec 2006) the Ubuntu community hold their Ubuntu Open Week – a week of IRC tutorials and sessions designed to encourage more and more people to join their diverse community. In just two years, Ubuntu has grown to a user base of over 6 million and a worldwide community spanning many different disciplines.

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A good free intro and online support. If it’s a dead week, what better time to dip a toe into Linux.

MONEY: More than what you save yourself.

Retiree provides the skinny on how anybody can save money when eating out
By Humberto Cruz | November 25, 2006

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I’ll give you this example: Save $100 a month for 15 years at a modest 6 percent rate of return and you will have in round numbers $29,000. And $29,000 in turn will earn another $1,740 a year at 6 percent, more than what you save yourself.

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Americans SAVE money? You don’t understand. We want it now. We are entitled to it now. We HAVE a credit card.

Sad to say there is a cliff at the end of this road.

LIBERTY: Health Disparities Persist for Men

November 14, 2006
Health Disparities Persist for Men, and Doctors Ask Why

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Still, by just about any measure, men’s health is abysmal. American men have an average life expectancy of 75.2 years, and even less — 69.8 years — for black men, compared with 80.4 years for women over all.

Men die of just about every one of the leading causes of death at younger ages than women, from lung cancer to influenza and pneumonia, chronic liver disease, diabetes and AIDS. One notable exception is Alzheimer’s disease: more women than men die of it.

Topping the list for both sexes is heart disease.

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Ahh, this is an easy one to knock out of the park!

It’s the gubamint’s fault. It’s OUR fault.

No, seriously.

We have allowed the politicians to wrest control by high taxes and charitable contribution rules to control the debate. AND, they add their own huge handling fee to everything medical.

Now, imagine you get to keep ALL your hard earned money.

(A staggering thought. Overwhelming. Uncomprehendable!)

Now you can donate your money to the charities that you see fit. Imagine how the charities will compete for research dollars? Touting their accomplishments. When was the last time you heard of us wiping out a disease? Polio in the Fifties? And, the March of Dimes moved on to “birth defects”, while an admirable cause, will never be cured.

Large organizations want to stay in business.

So who will lead the fight for cures?

Why it’s our old “friends” the money grubbing insurance companies!

They have a distinct motive that you live just as long as you can, paying premiums of course.

Yup, leave it to the insurance company. Get the gubbamint out of health care, drugs, and R&D.

The average life span will be 200 before you know it!