Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Humanities/2010 October 7

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October 7[edit]

FLOSSIE[edit]

Resolved

(This is one of those tip-of-my-brain things). What is the actual name of the insurgent/resistance/militant group that I'm misremembering as "FLOSSIE"? Part of me thinks it's somehow French, or French-African, and I know it's not FiFI or FAF; I think it's phonetically "flossy", or something very like that. Sorry I can't be of more help (if I could, I'm confident I'd have remembered it by now). Would that we had a List of insurgent groups with harmless-sounding names article (FRELIMO sounds like a circus clown, and Sendero Luminoso sound much nicer than they really were, I fear). -- Finlay McWalterTalk 00:44, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Never mind, I found it (Front for the Liberation of Occupied South Yemen - FLOSY). -- Finlay McWalterTalk 00:49, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Don't forget the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. Paul (Stansifer) 14:30, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Which country is the best to live in?[edit]

--70.245.189.11 (talk) 00:50, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

That, uh, kinda depends on what you're looking for. → ROUX  00:57, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Nordic countries in general fare well in many of these indices. -- Finlay McWalterTalk 01:00, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
However, those same countries tend to fall low on the "Lack of blistering cold and paralyzing snowstorms" scale. --Jayron32 01:47, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

It really depends on what you're looking for, the human development indexes make several value assumptions. A billionaire and a unemployed person are going to be looking for different kind of government services. A libertarian and a traditionalist muslim are going to be looking for different kinds of social norms. —Arctic Gnome (talkcontribs) 04:50, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

You might want to think in terms of cities rather than countries, in which case Vienna regularly comes out on top, see the results of this survey. --Viennese Waltz 07:46, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
People in Costa Rica "report the highest life satisfaction". [1] —Preceding unsigned comment added by 194.171.56.13 (talk) 15:55, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Chinese Geneaology[edit]

Does the fact that a Chinese person have the same surname mean they all originate from the first who held that surname? I know it isn't the case for the more popular names but out of all the people with the surname Liu how many were descendants of the Emperors of the Han Dynasty?--Queen Elizabeth II's Little Spy (talk) 01:16, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

That is not true. Ignoring those who take on a family name through adoption or marriage, there are many examples of a person changing his or her family name, such as Sun Tzu/Sun Wu. Further, family names used to be allowed only by the rich and powerful. Commoners only had a given name. If a surname was required, it was the lord of the land in which the commoner lived. A western similarity would be slaves that took on their master's last name. For a lot more detail, see Chinese surname. -- kainaw 01:38, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Famous Santorini (?) painting[edit]

Resolved

Dear Wikipedians:

I remember seeing a famous painting of Santorini (?: I am not sure if the locale of the painting points exactly to Santorini) in one of the poster sales at my university a few years ago.

The poster is divided roughly into three parts -- a blue sky stretches across the top, a bunch of white adobe dome houses with some of them having arched entry way (without the blue tops of typical Santorini churches) to the bottom left, and an endless stretch of blue mediterranean sea to the bottom right. The time seems to be a lazy afternoon. There seems to be a series of broad terrace steps leading down and around the white adobe dome houses, the terrace steps take a turn around the white adobe dome houses and disappears around the far end of the houses.

I am having real trouble finding this painting on the Internet. I think it should be a very famous painting, made perhaps by a 19th or 20th century impressionist/modern art painter. However, all the Santorini paintings I have Googled either have the houses on the wrong side (right side), too few/no/blue adobe domes, rocky lands visible beyond the sea, no blue sky, or missing the terrace.

Could anyone kindly help point me to the right painting?

Thanks,

174.88.242.103 (talk) 01:34, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Santorini is a popular place to paint. Could it be a Behrens, perhaps? (Mediteranean; "neo-Impressionist"; popular in "poster" form). Like [2], or maybe [3]...? WikiDao(talk) 01:51, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks WikiDao. Although not what I remembered, but that was about as near as it gets. Maybe I remembered the posters wrong, because it has been a long time since I last saw the poster. 128.100.113.126 (talk) 13:57, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Glad to help! :) WikiDao(talk) 19:26, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

SCOTUS rulings.[edit]

So the Supreme Court (U.S.) heard oral arguments in Phelps v. Snyder today. When will the ruling be issued (I mean in a typical case, obviously no one here has a working crystal ball)? Are the rulings released at the end of the term, or as soon as they're done? How long does it typically take to finalize a ruling? Buddy431 (talk) 02:24, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

On the court's web site (supremecourt.gov), the "Visitor's Guide to Oral Argument" page says "No one knows exactly when a decision will be handed down by the Court in an argued case, nor is there a set time period in which the Justices must reach a decision. However, all cases argued during a term of Court are decided before the summer recess begins, usually by the end of June." The "Visitor's Guide to the Supreme Court" document on the same site is a bit more specific: it says "In mid-May, after the oral argument portion of the Term has concluded, the Court takes the Bench Mondays at 10 a.m. for the release of orders and opinions. This practice continues until all the cases heard during the Term are decided, usually the last week in June." --Anonymous, 08:37 UTC, October 7, 2010.
The time for decision varies, affected by such factors as the complexity of the case, how many justices will write opinions, and the court's schedule. Here the case is quite complex and we can be reasonably confident that there will be more than one opinion. I would guess that a decision will come down in three to six months. John M Baker (talk) 14:16, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Life Insurance claims India[edit]

How do they pay life insurance claims in India, given the amount of potential fraudulent claims, non disclosure at the time of application, the inabililty to confirm date of birth, death or even identity? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aneelr (talkcontribs) 07:40, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

If you are an Indian, you should know the answer - It is single word mantra : रिशवत  Jon Ascton  (talk) 15:22, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
All life insurance companies in India have to comply with the strict regulations laid out by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA). Wikipedia has an article on Life insurance in India. Cuddlyable3 (talk) 17:58, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Legality of Prescription medicine purchases in Canada by Americans[edit]

Is it illegal for Americans to drive to Canada, purchase a car load of prescription medicine and return to the US? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aneelr (talkcontribs) 07:44, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, The Reference Desk does not ansewer legal questions please see the rules at the top of the page. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 209.167.165.2 (talk) 07:57, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

However, I think it would be safe to point out that it would not be possible to legitimately "purchase a carload of prescription medicine" unless you had a carload of prescriptions with you. --Anon, 08:40 UTC, October 7, 2010.
Oh no, that doesn't sound right. Medicines typically come in small boxes or bottles, but the prescriptions are only paper-thin and take up far less volume. You might need only a few shoe boxes full of scripts to get enough medicine to fill a car. -- Jack of Oz ... speak! ... 09:42, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
There is quite a lot of information on the subject at Online pharmacy#U.S. consumers. Karenjc 14:02, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Sometimes drugs that are prescription in America are over-the-counter in Canada. Perhaps that's what the question is about? APL (talk) 14:53, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Is the short answer to the original post "Yes, it is illegal"? I know that UK citizens travelling to the US are warned against taking certain over the counter remedies with them, notably those that contain codeine. Itsmejudith (talk) 15:13, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
It seems to be more about the state-controlled price of prescription drugs in Canada, which can be considerably lower than for the same drugs in the USA. According to the article section I've linked to above, Canadian law allows pharmacies to get a US prescription rewritten by a Canadian doctor, with or without an examination depending on the circumstances, permitting them then to issue the drugs legally against the Canadian version of the prescription. This seems to have been going on for years informally, on a relatively small scale, with mail-order and the internet now making it more widespread and organized. You can find varying opinions online about the legality of importing drugs into the USA after buying them in this way, and it appears to be a complex issue. Wikipedia cannot offer legal advice or opinions on this hypothetical situation, so if the information in our article on the subject is insufficient, you should consult an expert in US law. Karenjc 15:39, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Codeine is illegal in Greece.
Sleigh (talk) 22:00, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

U.S. law prohibits the re-importation of prescription drugs, but the government doesn't prosecute people who transport small amounts for personal use, and lots of people do it -- some members of Congress have even taken busloads of seniors to Canada to get medicine. -- Mwalcoff (talk) 23:17, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Infringement of persona -- astronaut sues singer[edit]

Does Wikipedia have an article discussing infringement of persona? Regarding Bruce McCandless II#Personal, I don't understand what case could be made against someone for using a government photo of an astronaut doing his job, particularly when, as in this case, no features of the astronaut are visible through the helmet's visor. Might Wikipedia be restricted from using certain "work of U.S. government, and thus copyright free" images for fear of infringing a subject's persona? -- 115.67.106.121 (talk) 08:43, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

It's not a matter of copyright, it's personality rights. In looking at this album cover, someone might (that's the claim of the lawsuit, at least) believe that McCandless was involved with the album, had some control over its content, endorsed it, or was getting paid from its proceeds. Wikipedia is on pretty solid ground using a photo of a living person in their own article. If we did something pretty obviously crazy, like we sold "Wikipedia Brand Chocolate Biscuits" and put photos of Brad Pitt on the packet, that would be the kind of thing we'd get sued over. But if we did something like make a Wikibook of famous actors, which had a montage of their photos on the front, that very likely would be fine. -- Finlay McWalterTalk 11:21, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Personality rights are more vague and problematic than (the already vague and problematic) copyright law. Anyway, we'll see how that particular case resolves in the courts. It looks awfully unlikely to succeed to me, but I'm not well-versed in personality rights case law. --Mr.98 (talk) 15:04, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Finlay McWalter is correct; "rights of publicity" is the more common term. The key concept is that, in the US at least, individuals get to control the use of their image for commercial purposes. This is by law in some states, and by court precedent in other states. If you'd like to get outraged over a rights-of-publicity court case, see Vanna White v. Samsung, in which Ms. White won a lawsuit and an appeal against Samsung because they featured an advertisement in which a robot with a blonde wig turned letters. Another interesting case was when Tom Waits sued Frito-Lay and won over US$2 million when, after Waits had turned down Frito-Lay's request to license one of his songs for an ad, the company hired a soundalike impersonator for the ad. Comet Tuttle (talk) 17:26, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

"bootmakers to the kings" in the film The Good Shepherd (by R.De Niro, 2006)[edit]

Hello, can you tell me what Pr Fredericks hints at when, going meekly to his death, he ties up Wilson's shoelace & says "bootmakers to the kings" . Somebody here answered previously to that by (could'nt find again the archive, sorry) : "it's an allusion about humble people being the weary soles of the powerfull..." Don't you think it rather looks like a quotation ? But where from ? The Bible ? Shakespeare ?. Thanks +++ beforehand Arapaima (talk) 09:20, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

You asked exactly the same question (slightly differently worded) just a day or so ago; see Wikipedia:Reference desk/Humanities#Poetry ref. in the film "The Good Sheperd" (by de Niro, 2006). Whatever answers we can provide will be given there. -- Jack of Oz ... speak! ... 09:38, 7 October 2010 (UTC) Or not, apparently. -- Jack of Oz ... speak! ... 21:28, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
So this has been asked and answered before, and I haven't even seen the movie so I don’t know the context. But I’ll go ahead and put in my two euro cents anyway: It looks to me like something a bootmaker would put on his advertisements. There’s a story, though, that the king of France was once so broke he couldn’t pay his bootmaker. And when the bootmaker refused to extend credit, the king had to go around in old, broken boots with the soles worn through. That’s one way to think about it: a king’s majesty depends on humble servants, and he scorns them at his peril.--Rallette (talk) 12:40, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Oh? where'd you hear that story? In an English context, see John Lobb Bootmaker, since Wikipedia doesn't have an article on George Hoby.--Wetman (talk) 15:42, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Lobb's display the Royal Warrant for the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales[4], and previously for Edward VII and George V[5]. George VI must have taken his business elsewhere. Alansplodge (talk) 16:15, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
The story is at least here, in "Joan of Arc" by Lord Ronald Gower:
"The yet uncrowned King of France (Charles VII) regarded the chances of being able to hold his own in France as highly problematical. He had doubts as to his legitimacy. Financially, so low were his affairs that even the turnspits in the palace were clamouring for their unpaid wages. The unfortunate monarch had already sold his jewels and precious trinkets. Even his clothes showed signs of poverty and patching, and to such a state of penury was he reduced that his bootmaker, finding that the King was unable to pay him the price of a new pair of boots, and not trusting the royal credit, refused to leave the new boots, and Charles had to wear out his old shoe-leather. All that remained in the way of money in the royal chest consisted of four gold 'écus.' To such a pitch of distress had the poor King, who was contemptuously called by the English the King of Bourges, sunken."
I have no idea if that particular detail is actually true.--Rallette (talk) 17:08, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Could be. That's got the right king at least, and the source gives the anecdote perspective. Perhaps depending on Lord Ronald Gower's colourful detail for actual history is like depending on Alma-Tadema for daily life in Rome.--Wetman (talk) 22:06, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
I have no idea whether it is intended or not, but the first thing that sprang to my mind was as a euphemism of "cobblers to the king. -- Q Chris (talk) 06:36, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Thank you most kindly, gentleladies & gentlemen, now I have my chest unburdenned~so its neither the Bible nor Will S. ....Arapaima (talk) 16:49, 17 October 2010 (UTC)

A bit of a factoid is that the Bootmakers to the King, currently John Lobb Shoes, are said to have earned their royal warrant initially at least in part by putting secret compartments in the heels of shoes for people to hide information or valuables. Just a factoid but also interesting - shoes with secret messages for those in high places. See the book on the history of the shoe company http://www.amazon.com/The-last-shall-first-bootmakers/dp/0241022738 — Preceding unsigned comment added by Robinlobb (talkcontribs) 19:30, 18 March 2016 (UTC)

Looking for plays that...[edit]

...start off with an exchange between two or so minor characters that foreshadow what will happen ahead. Hamlet's a good example. Thanks!  ?EVAUNIT神になった人間 12:33, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Macbeth is another. -- Finlay McWalterTalk 12:36, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Henry V another. --Sean 15:14, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Coriolanus, Shakespeare's most underrated play. Also Julius Caesar -- by the end of the first scene there's some foreshadowing. Antandrus (talk) 15:20, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Oedipus the King for an older example. See also our articles on foreshadowing (and Chekhov's gun for a similar narrative technique). ---Sluzzelin talk 15:23, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
TvTropes has a predictably enormous list of examples for foreshadowing, though you'd need to read through to find out which ones are based on an exchange between two characters. Vimescarrot (talk) 17:41, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Opie wants a play. --Sean 17:58, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
The Persians by Aeschylus, if Darius' mother counts as a minor character. Actually probably all the Greek dramas do this, they were pretty big on that sort of thing. (The Persians is also the first play to depict a ghost on stage!) Adam Bishop (talk) 18:39, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
You might have a bit of a problem finding modern plays that do this - the trend in the theater has been towards smaller, more intimate plays that lack minor characters. Bertold Brecht is the only modern author I can think of off hand who does 'scope' plays (I'm trying to remember how The Caucasian Chalk Circle starts - it might be an example of what you're looking for). --Ludwigs2 18:45, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
I was actually interested mostly in modern plays because I couldn't think of any. But thanks for all the responses!  ?EVAUNIT神になった人間 19:00, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Is this any use? Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead 92.15.17.139 (talk) 19:11, 9 October 2010 (UTC)

State Designations[edit]

I know there are four US states known as commonwealths...Virgina, Kentucky, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. I think all of the other states are just known as "states" However, I was asked last night if Texas had a different designation from just "state". Does anyone know the designations of all of the states? Is Texas known as something different like "Republic"? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.226.58.239 (talk) 16:43, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Per our article on Texas, there is no particular unusual designation. Note, however, that "commonwealth" as used by Virginia, etc, is a legally distinctionless term on par with Texas being the "Lone Star State" or Rhode Island being the "State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations". Legally, all the states are states, regardless of the preferred nomenclature. This should be contrasted with other commonwealths of the US, where the term describes Puerto Rico and the Northern Mariana Islands. Note that the Republic of Texas is a separate political entity, which preceded Texas' statehood (and preceded its incorporation into the US). — Lomn 17:19, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Today, the official name of Texas is simply "the State of Texas". Marco polo (talk) 17:24, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Similarly, the State of California's flag bears a California golden bear over the the legend "California Republic" modeled on the Bear Flag of the very transient republic set up for a few weeks of 1846 in Sonoma by settlers rebelling against Mexico. —— Shakescene (talk) 19:28, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Texas carries several demonyms which are unique to the state. e.g. Texian, Texican, or Tejano (although the latter two are reserved for Texans with hispanic roots). Texas does indeed have a unique process of becoming a state, with the joint resolution passed in 1845, Texas was offered some abilities which no other state before or after had. These included retention of public lands and having the ability to be separated into up to five states. Also Texas completely skipped the precedent of first becoming a territory before being offered statehood. And finally, The U.S. promised that the border dispute concerning the Nueces Strip would be resolved by The U.S., which led to The Mexican-American War, The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, and, ultimately, The American Civil War. schyler (talk) 03:16, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Why hasn't Iran nuked the US?[edit]

Fundamentalist Islamic Extremists definitely don't care about self-preservation, so it'd seem that mutually assured destruction wouldn't deter Iran from using nuclear weapons. --70.245.189.11 (talk) 22:34, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Iran has 75 million people, very many of them not Islamic Extremists. It also has a reasonably working government which is, while far from perfect, much more stable and democratic than most other states in the region. Why would it bomb the US, even assuming it had the technical capability? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 22:39, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
(EC)There's no evidence that Iran has nuclear weapons and good evidence pointing the other way - that they don't. So that would be one impediment. And then, you're tarring all Muslims with the same brush, which is as outrageous a thing to do as it is ignorant. The fact of suicide bombers has nothing to do with the foreign policy of Iran. --Tagishsimon (talk) 22:43, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
I know that most Muslims aren't extremists, but the ones who control Iran's government certainly are. --70.245.189.11 (talk) 22:48, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
That may be how it looks from Springfield, Missouri. And certainly it is in part a theocracy. Whether it is extreme in an Al Qaedao sort of fashion is very much to be doubted, not least since that organisation appears to be Sunni Muslim, whilst Iran is predominantly Shia. I'm guessing those sorts of subtleties don't travel so well. Other than serially pissing off the USA, wishing for the same sorts of armaments that Israel already possesses, and having a gobby leader with very controversial views, what leads you to conclude that the Iranian government are extremists? --Tagishsimon (talk) 22:57, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
Well, Iran has a bit of "democratiness" in the same fashion as "truthiness" is related to truth. I understand your point of trying to correct the OP in his gross misunderstanding of the Islamic world, but be careful not to overcorrect and give the impression that Iran is like Canada or Sweden, only a bit more muslim. It isn't. While Iran and Al-Queda are unlikely to get along, for the sectarian reasons you note, that doesn't mean that Iran does not sponsor Shia militant groups, like Hezbollah. On the balance, Iran has had a destabilizing effect on places like Lebanon, which in many ways has been a proxy war for war with Israel. Iranian made weaponry is frequently found in the hands of Palestinian militias. Even internally, you can't say that Iran is a bastion of hope and liberty. It isn't. Human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran makes it clear that Iran lacks many of the basic hallmarks of a democratic society, such as freedoms of religion, speech, or the press. On the balance, most Iranians who keep their head down and don't stir up trouble probably live pretty good lives with a decent standard of living, and are likely to be unmolested by the government. However, if you pick any random article from Category:Iranian reformists, it becomes clear that if you start to become critical of the Iranian government, things do not go well for you. --Jayron32 01:29, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I think now you overcorrect a bit too much in the opposite direction. What you say about Iranian foreign influence can similarly be said about many other states (replace "Lebanon" with "Nicaragua", "Hezbollah" with "the Contras", "Palestinian militias" with nearly every non-communist guerilla movement). I agree that Iran is far from a perfect (or even reasonable) democracy, but there is little doubt that it more democratic than Syria, Pakistan or Saudi-Arabia. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 06:08, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Pakistan? WikiDao(talk) 06:19, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Well, Pakistan ended it's last military dictatorship only 2 years ago. Apart from that, I think any difference in perception results from the fact that Pakistan, as a Western ally, receives far more favourable coverage in the press than Iran. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 06:51, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Ok, sounds reasonable enough. But even with Musharaff Pakistan wasn't as different from Iran (along some scale of "democracy-ness") than both are from The Kingdom. And Syria definitely gets bad press, but is still rather closer to the first two than to the third. :) WikiDao(talk) 07:07, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I cycle short distances, and go long distances by train. How will you do without any gas? ;-) --Stephan Schulz (talk) 08:15, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I got spirit. ;) WikiDao(talk) 09:18, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
You get your ass hauled to the local supermarket in an intercontinental bomber? That has to be somewhat inconvenient, the jet exhaust will mess up your hair, and I really don't think you will get a better mileage out of that than out of your standard US commuter car. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 10:56, 9 October 2010 (UTC)
1. They don't have a nuclear bomb; 2. Even if they did, they couldn't get it to the United States with any ease (they have no planes or missiles that could reach the US; they'd have to smuggle it in on some kind of boat, which would be risky); and 3. In any case, the Iranian state (which extends well beyond the Mullahs or Ahmadinejad) is interested in its self-preservation, not its own self-destruction. The kinds of people who become suicide bombers are not the same kinds of people who organize suicide bombers. It's a crucial difference. People don't get elected (or steal elections, if you must) so that they can get themselves killed. They might want to send other people to their deaths (whether you want to draw a distinction here between regular warfare and suicide warfare is up to you), but they aren't putting themselves under fire, as a rule. If Iran wants a nuke (which they probably do, but they might not be actively working towards one at the moment), they want it so that they can have more power in their region and a guarantee against invasion, not as a first-strike weapon. --Mr.98 (talk) 01:34, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Springfield, the answer to your question is simple: the people who rule Iran do care about self-preservation! That some of them may have employed a suicide bomber from time to time does not mean that they themselves are in any hurry to blow themselves up! If it were otherwise, they have had ample opportunity by now to self-destruct in any number of ways (even if nuking the US isn't necessarily one of them, because both 1) they do not have the capacity to produce one themselves yet and 2) they did not happen at some point to pick up a loose suitcase nuke or two on the cheap from some cash-strapped Russian plutocrat.;) WikiDao(talk) 01:51, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

This is probably an over-generalization, but suicide bombers tend not to be Shi'ite. In Iraq it always seems to be Sunnis blowing up Shi'ites. Whenever there is a suicide attack in Iran, Iran acts completely surprised and tries to blame it on the US. I don't think there is any state-sponsored suicide bombing in Iran. Adam Bishop (talk) 04:44, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
An Iranian-backed suicide bombing.
See 1983 Beirut barracks bombing for the stand-out example. Admittedly Shiʻas seem less likely (per capita...?) to be suicide bombers, and there is in fact a Shia fatwa out against the practice (for what that's worth). I was responding to the OP's link to the Suicide bombing article, in any case. I took the question to be something like "All Fundamentalist Islamist Extremists are suicide bombers; Iran is Fundamentalist Islamist Extremist; therefore, why hasn't Iran nuked the US?" (which does seem more-or-less internally consistent, at least;) WikiDao(talk) 05:38, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
What is the point of this thread, apart from editors offering speculation and opinions about an event which has not taken place?--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 09:02, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I thought I had answered the question ("Springfield, the answer to your question is simple: the people who rule Iran do care about self-preservation!") and then I made a few somewhat off-topic clarifications (like this one). Why do you ask? WikiDao(talk) 09:12, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I ask because normally these kind of hot topic discussions get way out of hand and usually result in pointless arguing and insults being exchanged amongst editors.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 09:25, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Well then let me say "السلام عليكم" right now to all my fellow editors. :) WikiDao(talk) 09:37, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
And I'll gladly add Shalom aleichem. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 09:45, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Let me include a classic Mick Jagger quote: "Brothers, sisters, why are we fighting? Cool out, c'mon. Get into the groove, just relax".--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 09:54, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Honestly, Jeanne, this has seemed a remarkably peaceful discussion compared to some I've seen recently (like when I asked at the Sci desk how likely it was for the world to be strewn with strategically pre-placed nukes like Easter eggs!;).
But do you know the Velvet Underground? "Let it be good / do what you should / you know it'll be alright..." :) WikiDao(talk) 11:06, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I would add that even if Ahmednijhad (or however it is spelled) could guarantee his personal survival of a US retaliation, being president of a radioactive parking lot isn't all that much fun, so the assumption that deterrence does not apply is not really true. Googlemeister (talk) 13:15, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
It's spelled I'm a dinner jacket.Itsmejudith (talk) 13:51, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
I guess people also forget that the development of nuclear weapons in Iran would never be about bombing the United States itself. They don't have any rocket that could reach the US, for one thing. But they are already surrounded - in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in any other country that stations American troops, and in Sunni countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia that are officially US allies (Iran does not even have any diplomatic ties with Egypt, and the Saudis are not very friendly to Iranian pilgrims to Mecca - some Iranian commandos tried to attack the city once, in the 70s). Nearby Pakistan and India have nuclear weapons already, and while Pakistan might be politically unstable, Iran is probably a lot more worried about Israel, which also has them (and aside from Iraq, the only one place where there are a lot of Shiites is Lebanon, where Hezbollah gets a lot of support from Iran). So this isn't really about Iran vs. the US or one of them nuking the other, but it doesn't help that US influence is everywhere in the area. Surely Iranian perceptions of the US are wrong, but does that matter? Are American perceptions of Iran any better? Given the original question, I would say obviously not. Geopolitics is hard, man, like high school math. Adam Bishop (talk) 13:45, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
In Los Angeles (my hometown), there are a lot of Iranian people. I used to meet them everywhere. Not all US citizens are insular and uninformed.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 14:41, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Just as a guess, most of them are people or descendants of people who emigrated when the Shah was overthrown. Do you think this is a representative sample?--Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:48, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
Actually they weren't descendants, they were people who left Iran in the 1970s. I once saw an anti-Shah protest in Beverly Hills back in 1979.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 14:56, 8 October 2010 (UTC)
You look much younger! ;-) Seriously, that sample will be just as unrepresentative, if in another direction. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 21:28, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Is martyrdom for real, or just PR? My gut feeling is that these people who blow themselves up are just depressed people who see a chance to get $25,000 or so for their families, who are exploited by the wealthy. Which would mean that the elites of Iran or Pakistan will never turn shaheed with nuclear weapons, while Westerners have been giving terrorists a reverence they don't deserve. But has anyone proved the point? Wnt (talk) 18:34, 10 October 2010 (UTC)

It's a bit more complicated; depending on the time/place/enemy, the people who sign up to be suicide bombers vary quite a bit. They're not always depressed, they're not always poor. (Consider how many of the lead 9/11 pilots were actually pretty well-educated, middle class, and lived in the West for long amounts of time.) But I do think the observation that states are unlikely to act this way is, so far as we can tell, usually on the mark. There certainly are examples of states (and individuals who head them) doing things which are recklessly dangerous or provoking or self-defeating because of bizarre ideologies or beliefs (both World Wars fall into this category more or less). But Iran, for all of its theocratic aspects and shady elections, is not a dictatorship of the same sort as Imperial Japan or Nazi Germany or Tsarist Russia or North Korea. It has a more complicated political structure and more checks than just the ayatollahs or the president. Its interest in nukes seems entirely rational and self-interested, even if not desirable from the point of view of most of the world. They want regional power, they want security against an American or Israeli attack, they want a deterrent against Israel. All of that is pretty straight-up rational actor game theory. --Mr.98 (talk) 02:25, 12 October 2010 (UTC)

Life Insurance companies in Bermuda[edit]

Where can I get a list of life insurance companies registered in Bermuda? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Aneelr (talkcontribs) 22:56, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Would this be what you are looking for? Battleaxe9872 وکیپیڈیا 22:59, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
(EC)Google is quite helpful in suggesting, for instance, http://www.bermuda-online.org/insurebm.htm --Tagishsimon (talk) 23:00, 7 October 2010 (UTC)