Tuesday, September 30, 2008
My New Favorite Animal
Labels: Red Panda
Worst Case Scenario
Make your mind a complete blank on things you have learned from Rush or Hugh or Michael Medved, everything you've read on Power Line or Instapundit or Patterico's or Wolf Howling -- or even here. Just watch and tell me: Does Pelosi come across on this video as a raving left-winger, a bomb-throwing radical, a poison-spewing harpy? Because honestly, I think she comes across as very reasonable and even-handed -- even as she fires lie after lie after vile, despicable lie into the heartland:
And then he gets really bleak.
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race
Thought of the Day
British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain (70 years ago to the day)
Labels: Neville Chamberlain quote
Monday, September 29, 2008
Scary Photo of the Day
At least Massachusetts doesn't apppear to be afraid of being honest here. That's not so good. If we ever get thought police or some permutation of that concept, there won't be anything on the side of their cars.
Labels: Future; Environmental Police
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Thought of the Day
Labels: Barack Obama quote
Saturday, September 27, 2008
A Vestas wind system fail and crashes.
Along with them catching on fire from time to time, some windmills have the brakes fail and self destruct...spectacularly.
(h/t Anthony Watt)
This Day in the Short History of Successful Invasions of England
Labels: Norman Conquest
Making alcohol from corn or any other good food source is a bad idea. Too much energy and water goes into it to make it a long term solution and it makes food prices higher. Bad idea. John McCain told the truth last night to dismiss that as a solution.
Making alcohol from sugar. Could work but we would never get above 10% additive to gasoline unless we turned huge tracts of our nation into cane or sugar beet farms, which is unlikely.
Making alcohol from non food crops. Too much energy and water goes into it to make it a long term solution even if it has no effect on food prices.
Biodiesel from good food sources. Same problem as alcohol. OK to reuse french fry oil, but not a lot of that around, certainly not even a 1% solution here.
Biodiesel from algae. It turns out it's easy to grow algae but very, very difficult to turn the algae into oil. Many have grown algae in ponds and plastic tubes. only one company, in New Zealand, has actually made any substantial amount of oil out of it. Algal biodiesel corrodes rubber. That's not so good.
Methane from manure. A medium sized farm, with 200 pigs, 70 beef cows or 90 dairy cows, can produce, with a lot of daily effort, enough methane to heat a 1400 square foot house for a year. Some help but hardly worth the effort unless you have a huge smell problem you have to abate. Few farms of any size bother with it. Methane so generated usually contains toxic and corrosive contaminants. That's not so good
I just don't see a future here.
Falling water will generate power, but there are few places left to build dams and we want to preserve the un-dammed rivers left. Tide is so far unproven but where are you going to put it? The sandy parts of the coast are used for recreation and the price to crowd the sun and sea bathers out is prohibitive. In the mud parts of the coast, we, again, want to preserve the life generating wetlands and not make them into more sterile, power water storage areas.
Let's look at the big ones.
Wind power. It obviously works, but it's expensive, causes a sort of noise pollution and for many is a scenery spoiler. It also chops up a lot of birds and bats. That's not so good. Also, the wind is usable only about 30 to 35% of the time so it would have to be backed up by a 'nimble' power plant that could take over immediately when the wind dies down.
Photovoltaic. Obviously works as well, but only generates usable power about 35 to 40% of the time. Also it is very expensive, only 25% efficient, even in theory, and takes up a lot of space. What do you do with the area under the collectors? Except for small time generation, on roofs, the answer now is nothing. Has the same back-up needs as windmills.
All alternative ways of producing electric power would need a lot of new infrastructure to put them on the grid.
So it looks like oil, natural gas and coal into the future as far as almost anyone can see.
There is one solution that seems just the ticket. Nuclear. It produces almost no CO2. It works really well (just look at Sweden and France) and a single, merely large nuclear power plant would produce as much power as 1400 of the largest commercially produced windmills. I'd much rather have the nuke power plant. You have to store some of the nuclear waste safely, forever, but there is a mountain in the middle of nowhere Nevada (I know that doesn't narrow it down much) that is all ready for just such storage.
The arrow of the future appears clear. 50 new nuclear power plants, as many windmills and photovoltaics as we can afford, backed up with natural gas power plants. Meanwhile, there is no reason to pump up the price of oil by artificially depressing the supply. Drill, baby, drill. Here and now.
Like Germany during the latter half of WWII, we'll only make gasoline from coal when there is not real gasoline to be had.
Have I left any real promising ones out?
Labels: Alternative Fuel Sources
Top Ten Paul Newman Movies
The Drowning Pool
The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
Cool Hand Luke
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
A long life, well loved. RIP
CORRECTION: I meant 'A long life, well lived.' Perhaps a Freudian slip.
Labels: Paul Newman
Friday, September 26, 2008
Thought of the Day
Anonymous (with a h/t to Investors Business Daily)
Labels: Anonymous quote
Thursday, September 25, 2008
And how can Obama do poorly against McCain in the debates if McCain isn't there? McCain has been going all populist and, well, being pretty foolish, from time to time since Black Thursday. Andrew Cuomo?
There's a good reason he has lost some ground.
This Day in the History of Crusades Ending in Disaster
Labels: Crusade History
Third Battle of Ypres
Even as late as the Summer of 1917, there were generals of the Allied Armies who still believed in the 'one more push' way to victory. This battle, July 11 to November 10, 1917, would lay that failed strategy to rest. Here are a series of photos showing the effects of heavy bombardment during this time.
The casualties of the battle--dead, wounded, captured and missing--exceeded 850,000, with the bulk of them to the soldiers of the British Empire (500,000) with only 350,000 to the Germans. 'Only.'
(they called it Passchendaele); my wound was slight
and I was hobbling back; and then a shell
burst slick upon the duckboards; so I fell
into the bottomless mud, and lost the light
Labels: Arctic Sea Ice; Melting in 2008
Thanks to Alcee Hastings
“Anybody toting guns and stripping moose don’t care too much about what they do with Jews and blacks. So, you just think this through.”
It now seems so obvious, I'm kicking myself for not noticing it before.
Of course, in a just universe, Hastings would just be getting out of jail about now rather than be the 7 time Representative for Florida's 23rd District. As it is, he is merely an impeached judge who disgraced his office and continues to disgrace his constituents.
Labels: Palin Derangement Syndrome
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
The Weather on Top of the World
Labels: Global Cooling
Another Cycle 24 Sunspot
Whew. Maybe we in the upper northern hemisphere are not all going to starve and/or freeze to death over the next 15 years. The flux density remains very low and the solar wind is at its lowest point since we started measuring it. What exactly this will mean for our climate is unknown. These things are not, however, related historically to warming here on Earth.
The Lure of the Conspiracy Theory
Once you're in, it's tough to get out.
Photoshop of the Day
Labels: Congressional Successes
The Achievements of Our Current Congress
Here is a partial list of what the Republicans got done:
- Won the war in Iraq (kept funding it, defeated Democrat Defeatists legislation, got the surge going).
- Fixed FISA (a little) and kept immunity in the new bill.
- Stopped enlargement of S-CHIP.
- Stopped a new illegal alien amnesty.
- Stopped card check voting for unions.
- Defeated (a week from now) Democrat renewal of offshore drilling moratorium.
- Stopped all efforts to impeach our current leaders.
I wonder if the Democrats who voted in the new Congress are satisfied with its accomplishments? We Republicans seem better lately when in the minority.
(h/t Moe Lane)
Thought of the Day
Then he said, "Jump right in."
The one was Texas medicine
The other was just railroad gin
And like a fool I mixed them
And it strangled up my mind
And now, people just get uglier
And I have no sense of time.
Bob Dylan in Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again
Labels: Bob Dylan quote
Right in Glenn Reynold's Back Yard
*And if you want a white actor with such features look no further than Ron Perlman, currently involved in the horrible FX series about the more noble nature of bikers, Sons of Anarchy. He certainly has made lemonade of the lemon genes he inherited.
Labels: Science on TV; Neanderthal
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
A NOTE ON THE ICE FORECAST...SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES ALONG THE ALASKA CHUKCHI AND BEAUFORT SEA COASTS ARE 2 TO 8 DEGREES CELSIUS COLDER THIS YEAR THAN AT THE SAME TIME LAST YEAR. SEA ICE IN THESE AREAS IS AT OR VERY NEAR THE SEASONAL MINIMUM. SIGNIFICANT ICE WILL BEGIN DEVELOPING ALONG THE ALASKA COAST NORTH OF 70N WITHIN THE NEXT 10 TO 14 DAYS.
Good news for those who like their Arctic Ocean icelocked.
Labels: Global Cooling
Democrats Surrender on Drilling Offshore
Money quote from Cap'n Ed:
This puts quite the capper on the 110th. Not only did Democrats fail to achieve their broad policy goals, they failed on almost every specific goal they set in 2006. They failed to stop funding the Iraq war, they failed to impeach George Bush, and they surrendered on energy policy. Their only policy goal achieved — an increase in the minimum wage — came in a war-funding bill.
This battle may have been won, but the larger war for a rational energy policy continues. Congress has to pass a revenue-sharing bill with the states in order to get investment started in American production — a process that will create American jobs and keep our wealth in the US rather than overseas. With the meltdown in the financial markets still looming, this could not come at a better time.
Labels: Democrat Defeat
Thought of the Day
Christopher Hitchens on Barack Obama (from an essay sub-titled Why is Obama so vapid, hesitant, and gutless?)
Labels: Christopher Hitchens quote
Monday, September 22, 2008
Brief Sports Post
Clean, Renewable Energy
This Day in the History of Germans Beating Up on the British
Labels: WWI history; Naval Battle
Thought of the Day
Labels: Walt Meier quote
Sunday, September 21, 2008
This Day in the History of Cutting Off Your Nose to Breath Easier
Labels: Aetius; Valentinian
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Proof We Will Win in Afghanistan
And now? After the "unimaginable" progress in Iraq – I am quoting the fantasist who still occupies the White House – the Americans are going to hip-hop 8,000 soldiers out of Mesopotamia and dump another 4,700 into the hellfire of Afghanistan. Too few, too late, too slow, as one of my French colleagues commented acidly. It would need at least another 10,000 troops to hope to put an end to these Taliban devils who are now equipped with more sophisticated weapons, better trained and increasingly – sad to say – tolerated by the local civilian population. For Afghanistan, read Irakistan.
Oh no, not Iraqistan. Anything but that. (Is Fisk actually taken seriously in England?) I have to ask. And do we really need to take criticism of our successful war efforts from the French, who haven't triumphed in war without our help since very early in the 19th Century? 4,700 won't do it but 10,000 will? So if we add 5,300 troops who will fight, victory is assured? No, he tells us victory is impossible whatever we do. Nothing like careful analysis. Does anyone doubt that at one time in the past 5 years, Fisk wrote the same thing about Iraq? Which is why I am so optimistic. If Fisk says it's white, odds are it's at best a dark grey.
It would be helpful if the non English speaking nations in NATO with troops in Afghanistan actually ordered them to fire their weapons and if the Western nations that pledged money for rebuilding in Afghanistan actually paid what they pledged.
I, however, flat out reject the notion that finishing Gulf War 1 was a distraction to our efforts in Afghanistan. We have never let up in Afghanistan. When the whole of the Taliban decamped for Pakistan, there was, necessarily, little fighting of the Taliban in Afghanistan. We had to wait for them to return, which they are now, to their ultimate sorrow. I do, however, believe that the war in Iraq has been a huge distraction-- to the al Qaeda/Taliban efforts to reestablish control in Afghanistan. Only with the certain (but not yet completed) defeat of al Qaeda in Mesopotamia has the bulk of Arabs willing to fight American soldiers been directed back to Afghanistan. Of course we will have to respond to changing conditions on the ground, but if Pakistan actually does what it says it will, the Taliban story is going to all end in tears, as if it hasn't, to a large degree, already done just that.
The photo is of our Aussie allies patrolling.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
This Day in Ancient History
At least there is still a good statue of him.
His military ability were middling at best, but the skills and organization of the Legions kept him, and the Empire, in the game all during his 15 year reign.
Thought of the Day
Labels: Anonymous quote
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
The End of Arctic Melting
Labels: Global Warming
Photoshop of the Day
Thought of the Day
Labels: Barack Obama quote
Consciousness of Guilt
In this vein, in my experience outside a criminal trial, the first one to say, 'I didn't do it,' should be the prime suspect.
I give you Exhibit A, Nancy Pelosi, asked about who was responsible for the recent collapse of several companies involved in financing or holding 'mortgage bonds' She often has a difficult time being succinct, but her response was basically, 'We didn't do it."
Let's look just at the Fannie/Freddie Mac debacle. My source, from September 11, 2003, is the New York Times:
The Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago.Gee, I wonder who opposed this plan? Can the New York Times shed any light?
Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government--sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry.
Among the groups denouncing the proposal today were the National Association of Home Builders and Congressional Democrats who fear that tighter regulation of the companies could sharply reduce their commitment to financing low-income and affordable housing.(emphasis added).
''These two entities -- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- are not facing any kind of financial crisis,'' said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. ''The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.''
Representative Melvin L. Watt, Democrat of North Carolina, agreed.
Oh. The Democrats killed an oversight program of Freddie and Fannie 5 years ago. So it's good to see Ms. Pelosi is as accurate as usual.
(h/t Minuteman McGuire)
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
The High Water Mark of American Military Power
A Little Perspective
Labels: Tort Reform; Retrenchment
Worst Political Denial in American History
Here is an account of the denial of the statement by some previously unknown lackey at the Obama campaign. Money quotes:
Barack Obama's White House campaign angrily denied Monday a report that he had secretly urged the Iraqis to postpone a deal to withdraw US troops until after November's election.
But Obama's national security spokeswoman Wendy Morigi said Taheri's article bore "as much resemblance to the truth as a McCain campaign commercial."
In fact, Obama had told the Iraqis that they should not rush through a "Strategic Framework Agreement" governing the future of US forces until after President George W. Bush leaves office, she said.
One more time for the slightly slow.
Zebarihas: "[Obama] asked why we were not prepared to delay an agreement until after the US elections and the formation of a new administration in Washington."
Morigi: "...Obama had told the Iraqis that they should not rush through a "Strategic Framework Agreement" governing the future of US forces until after President George W. Bush leaves office."
I can't find anything more to say that's not venomous invective against Morigi's intelligence.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Brief Sports Post
Let’s start with social issues like Second Amendment freedoms. Mr. Obama denies that he’s ever supported banning handguns, right after the landmark Heller case where the Supreme Court struck down Washington D.C.’s handgun ban.
When a 1996 questionnaire surfaced that had asked if Mr. Obama supported banning all handguns, his one-word written answer was “yes.” He said an unnamed staffer must have filled it out without his knowledge. Then another copy surfaced — this one with his handwriting on it. He says he must not have read that particular question. Sure.
And then we have the Iraq war. Congress authorized war against Iraq in 2002. The vote in the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate was an overwhelming bipartisan majority of 77-23. The intelligence provided to Congress was profoundly flawed, but based on the intelligence presented, Congress voted for war. That is why those voting for the war included John Kerry, John Edwards, Hillary Clinton,and — yes — Joe Biden.
Yet Mr. Obama, who was in the Illinois Senate at the time and thus had no vote, opposed the war. He says that this shows his superior judgment, and that those voting for the war, like John McCain, lack the judgment to be president. But his vice presidential pick Joe Biden voted for the war, and Mr. Obama says Mr. Biden has the judgment to be president. How do you reconcile that?
Thought of the Day
Stephen Jay Gould
(h/t Charles Johnson)
Labels: Stephen Jay Gould quote
Sunday, September 14, 2008
This Day in the History of French Efforts Reaching the Top of a Rainbow Arc
Labels: Napoleanic Wars; 1812 Disaster
Late Summer in the Rockies
This was the snow rolling in, although I didn't know that then. I was in shirt sleeves, although I fortunately brought my unlucky hunting coat. Maybe that's what scared off the elk.
This is an old, logged out area which my bud says is prime elk hunting. Since I couldn't find a line of fire more than 50 yards long, I wondered why we had worked so hard to get our rifles sighted in at 200. This seems more like claymore ambush area than sniper ally.
The mountains were pretty the next morning.
Some might even say magnificent.
Which is good, because then we can look at the beautiful scenery all around us when the elk have eluded us.
At least he has his 'evil Spock' goatee going, so I know he's serious about eliminating Colorado's excess elk population, one at a time.
Have you seen your [future] brother, baby, standing in the shadows? I hope he has a better eye through his scope than he does through the camera's view finder. Pretty much nailed the mountain view, though.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Thought of the Day
E. J. Dionne
Labels: E. J. Dionne quote
Niether Jake Tapper Nor Paul Krugman Can Read a Statute
OK, let's look at Tapper's support for his name calling. Krugman supplies none, as usual, just more name calling. His one talent is apparently in the dismal science and he's not a shining star there.
Tapper says that Barack Obama did not write Illinois SB0099 and that it did not become law, but that Obama voted for it. Sorry, Jake, that's supporting it. So that part was true. Obama supported the legislation.
Now we can look at the legislation and see if it contains what John McCain's ad said it contains.
Tapper does a strawman argument here:
McCain’s ad makes it sound as if Obama was mandating that kindergartners receive the same information as a sexually active high school senior.
Frankly, Jake, we don't care what you think it sounds like, we want to know if what it actually does say is false is not. This would seem self evident in an article sub-titled "From the Fact Check Desk," but I guess it's possible the word 'facts' means something else to Jake Tapper.
Finally he quotes the crucial part of the proposed statute:
The word “comprehensive” appears just once in the bill as applied to kindergartners, it the section saying that "Each class or course in comprehensive sex education offered in any of grades K through 12 shall include instruction on the prevention of sexually transmitted infections, including the prevention, transmission and spread of HIV" (Emphasis added)
Tapper also quotes this from elsewhere in the statute: All course material and instruction shall be age and developmentally appropriate.
He then says this.
So what does “comprehensive sex education” mean in terms of kindergartners?
“It means teaching kids about families,” McDowell says.
Is McCain right when he says Obama wanted kids to learn about sex before they learned how to read?
“If by 'sex' he meant that there are boys and girls and mothers and fathers, yes," McDowell says.
But that's clearly not what McCain is suggesting.
"No reasonable person would believe we’re talking about teaching kindergartners about sexual intercourse," McDowell says...
Sorry, Mr. McDowell and Mr. Tapper, statutes don't work that way. Both of the quoted sections are mandatory because they contain the magic word "shall." It is a universal rule of statutory construction that you interpret the various mandatory sections in harmony. You don't ignore one mandatory section because of another mandatory section.
In the first quoted section the K class' sex education "shall include instruction on the prevention of sexually transmitted infections" like AIDS. You can't get out of that by saying it's not age appropriate to teach 5 year olds about how to avoid AIDS, even if it is, because the statute requires, for K classes, the sex education to contain just such instruction. You have to make the instruction age appropriate (I guess calling it Mr. Condom or something), but you don't get to skip it. Any lawyer would realize this after reading the proposed statute. Neither Krugman nor Tapper are lawyers, but Senator Obama is.
What McCain's ad contained regarding SB0099 is absolutely true.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
The Best of the Web Indeed
Fowler uses Palin's motherhood to disparage her accomplishments, an obvious betrayal of the principle of women's equality. And although proponents of permissive abortion laws nearly always claim to support not abortion but "a woman's right to choose," here we have three of them rebuking Palin for choosing not to abort her baby.
Sullivan and Wilson go further, ascribing evil intent to an act of maternal love. To Sullivan, Palin's decision to carry her child to term is a salvo in a "culture war"--that is, an act of aggression against those with different political views. (That, at least, is how he sees it for the purpose of this post. In an earlier one, he praised her for going through "eight months of pregnancy and a painful, difficult, endless labor for a cause she believes in"--which, although considerably less obnoxious, still depicts the decision as a political rather than a personal one.)
To Wilson, Palin's adherence to her own principles about the sanctity of life is an act of neglect toward her children--proof "that her most beloved child is the antiabortion platform." Never mind that the alternative would have ensured that one of her actual children did not live.
None of this can be explained in terms of political calculation. Scorning a woman for declining to abort a disabled child is likely to be about as persuasive to voters as burning an American flag. These ugly sentiments have to be sincere. In a way, that makes them even more disquieting.
Lie of the Day
Tim Fernholz (emphasis added)
Closer? How many of the last 14 primaries did Senator Obama win? How about 5 and not a single big state. Wow, that's quite a kick.
I'm serious--you can't count his first successful try for the Illinois Senate in 1996 because he merely disqualified his serious adversaries ahead of the campaign; nor can you count his being crushed by former Black Panther Bobby Rush for a Congressional seat in 2000. Nor can you count his successful Senate run, as his formidable Republican opponent was knocked out by a 'sex scandal with no sex' (with his wife, the Borg babe) and his subsequent run against non Illinois resident Alan Keyes was not a campaign but a horrible joke. So there are two successful runs for the state house in 1998 and 2002 to judge how good a closer Senator Obama is. It's a safe Democratic seat so the actual election was nothing but a popularity contest between Democrats. Where's the closer?
Looks like Tim is bucking up the Democrats' spirits with fibs.
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race
Thought of the Day
Tim Fernholz (trying to calm the Democrat panic)
Labels: Tim Fernholz quote
A Thing of Beauty
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race; intrade
A Source on the New York Times
That Iraq is ''a grave and gathering danger,'' as the president also said, is not in doubt. But is it as grave a danger as the enemy that attacked America on 9/11 and those states that are its most integral collaborators? The campaign against Iraq, wrote Brent Scowcroft in the op-ed that launched a thousand others, ''is certain to divert us for some indefinite period from our war on terrorism.'' Since major Qaeda attacks are planned well in advance and have historically been separated by intervals of 12 to 24 months, we will find out how much we've been distracted soon enough.
So if Rich is right, and the already successful recent war in Iraq (finishing Gulf War 1 properly) was a grand distraction to our efforts to disrupt the plans of al Qaeda to hit us again by no later than 2003, then what happened to the attack? The fact that it is 5 years overdue must cause at least some of the thinking left to wonder if taking the fight to al Qaeda in the center of the Caliphate seems to have distracted al Qaeda more than it has distracted us.
(h/t Ann Coulter)
This Day in the History of the British Defeating Americans
Labels: Revolutionary War
New Categories at Intrade
I'm not the only one thinking about it.
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Paul Begala Joins the Ineffectual Anti-Palin Meltdown
The straight skinny is that any governor welcomes free money from the feds, but it is the Senators, and here a congressman, who actually shake the money tree that is DC for such funds. We now revile these spending add-ons, known as ear marks, or pork, short for pork barrel spending, but this sort of spending has had a very long tradition in Congress.
Now we know that Obama and Biden were both for the earmarked funds for the bridge to nowhere because they voted for it, and even when Senator Tom Colburn (R-OK) gave them a second chance and an out--a chance to put the money to helping rebuild New Orleans, they voted for it again. That's fact; that's historical record.
When bloggers and then the national media finally put the spotlight on some ear mark spending and particularly on the bridge to nowhere, the Congress no longer said the money had to be spent on the bridge near Ketchikan, but the money still went to Alaska with no real strings attached. At that point, Governor Sarah Palin, who certainly wanted to help out the Gravina Island residents (all 50 of them) with better transportation to the rest of Alaska, said no to the multi-hundred million dollar bridge. Again, that's fact; that's historical record.
Here is what Begala said:
Not a lie. She was of the same mind as Obama and Biden, but after the big stink, when the money came without strings, she changed her mind and spent the money on different projects. The foul fiend. Apparently the Democratic logic is, if she was not against it from the very beginning, that is, when Obama and Biden were for it, she gets no credit for changing to being against it later and indeed, in the slightly warped mind of Paul Begala, she is lying to say she opposed and, in the end, killed the project, even though that's exactly what she did.
In the face of demonstrable, provable, incontrovertible evidence to the contrary, McCain and Palin continue to assert that Gov. Palin opposed the infamous "Bridge to Nowhere."
I said the media was at fault for letting Palin and McCain get away with "flat out lies."
Here is more Begala smears:
...noting Palin's support for banning books, teaching creationism and doubting
No book banning, nor any creationism in school; and she certainly believes it's getting warmer up there, she is merely skeptical about the anthropogenic claims (as any reasonably smart person with 20 hours of reading on the subject would be).
I have to admit that I'm enjoying the show of the anti-Palin smears and panic. I feel in my gut that it is counterproductive to the Obama campaign, so it's all good. There are a lot of people letting the mask over their haughty, elitist, sneering faces swing free. A lot of people on the left truly and honestly hate the bulk of their fellow Americans. The coverage of the panic makes the media look horrible too because, well, most of the TV talking heads are.
Post Convention Bump
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race; intrade
This Day in the History of American Naval Forces Defeating the British
Labels: War of 1812 naval battle
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
Richard Cohen Glady Jumps in the Sewer
Cohen starts with a list of Palin accomplishments, such as, "exaggerations, ...smug provincialism, ... hypocrisy about family and government." Provincial, sure, but smug? Elitists are smug (and how); provincials are generally more lout-like than smug. Oh well, his heart is in the right place. Like nearly all of the panicked, hate filled reaction to Palin from the left, he's a little short on detail. What exaggerations? What hypocrisy?
Not supplied. I guess we're just supposed to know these things.
The rest of the article is Cohen ragging on Obama for not fighting back more effectively. Yeah, Obama should do what his minions and supporters are doing. He could, for example, allude to her as a pig in lipstick. He could have his staff call her unqualified. He could ignore that she has 20 months of chief state executive experience which is 20 more months of executive experience than he has. There's plenty for him to do. Certainly like John Paul Jones, he has not yet begun to fight.
Dean "Chowda" Barnett noticed a functional equivalent which escaped my attention. Cohen said both Obama and McCain had moments in their histories of "pure wonderment". McCain refused early release from the torturous prison camp and remained there for over 5 years; and Obama became a community organizer in Chicago during the 3 year period after working in NYC for two years after graduation from Columbia, before he enrolled in Harvard Law. Can't you see the equality of those decision, the parity of the sacrifice. No? Hmmm. You must be a racist.
Juan Cole Logic Deprived
He says she has no values in common with our Founding Fathers, or at least far fewer than she has in common with Muslim fundamentalists.
He repeats the lie (discredited nearly everywhere but at sinking-in-debt Salon) that Sarah Palin supports banning books. He says the Muslims do that too. I seem to remember some socialists in the '20s and '30s burning books but I guess that is ancient history to the intellectual giant Cole must be.
There's more smear but why shouldn't Cole jump on the Democrats 'lie about Palin' bandwagon.
Here is the list of lefty core beliefs Sarah neglects to embrace. Abortion, contraception, Darwinism, anthropogenic global warming, and the separation of church and state. Yeah, Juan, all of these were central to the Founding Father's world view.
What Juan Cole doesn't know about Christianity and this nation's history could fill a library. Guess I'll know what I'm getting into when I read him again.
One Photo From the North Korean Celebration
It's a truck mounted ZPU-4 in 14.4mm with two large RPGs at the front corners. Think of the quad 50 in Waterworld but slightly larger in caliber. Not of any use at all against a jet (even with radar control) but possibly worthwhile against unarmored helicopters although its effective range is much less than the range of a hellfire missile. These are 60s Soviet hardware and I'd laugh at their inclusion in the parade but for the fact that they are 'manned' by women and thus will probably prove to be quite deadly.
This Day in the History of Evil
Labels: North Korea
Some of Obama Gaffes
All it takes is one gaffe to taint a Republican for life. The political establishment never let Dan Quayle live down his fateful misspelling of “potatoe.” The New York Times distorted and misreported the first President Bush’s questions about new scanner technology at a grocers’ convention to brand him permanently as out of touch.
But what about Barack Obama? The guy’s a perpetual gaffe machine. Let us count the ways, large and small, that his tongue has betrayed him throughout the campaign:
*Last May, he claimed that Kansas tornadoes killed a whopping 10,000 people: “In case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died — an entire town destroyed.” The actual death toll: 12.
*Earlier this month in Oregon, he redrew the map of the United States: “Over the last 15 months, we’ve traveled to every corner of the United States. I’ve now been in 57 states? I think one left to go.”
*Last week, in front of a roaring Sioux Falls, South Dakota audience, Obama exulted: “Thank you Sioux City…I said it wrong. I’ve been in Iowa for too long. I’m sorry.”
*Explaining last week why he was trailing Hillary Clinton in Kentucky, Obama again botched basic geography: “Sen. Clinton, I think, is much better known, coming from a nearby state of Arkansas. So it’s not surprising that she would have an advantage in some of those states in the middle.” On what map is Arkansas closer to Kentucky than Illinois?
*Obama has as much trouble with numbers as he has with maps. Last March, on the anniversary of the Bloody Sunday march in Selma, Alabama, he claimed his parents united as a direct result of the civil rights movement: “There was something stirring across the country because of what happened in Selma, Alabama, because some folks are willing to march across a bridge. So they got together and Barack Obama Jr. was born.” Obama was born in 1961. The Selma march took place in 1965. His spokesman, Bill Burton, later explained that Obama was “speaking metaphorically about the civil rights movement as a whole.”
*Earlier this month in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Obama showed off his knowledge of the war in Afghanistan by honing in on a lack of translators: “We only have a certain number of them and if they are all in Iraq, then it’s harder for us to use them in Afghanistan.” The real reason it’s “harder for us to use them” in Afghanistan: Iraqis speak Arabic or Kurdish. The Afghanis speak Pashto, Farsi, or other non-Arabic languages.
*Over the weekend in Oregon, Obama pleaded ignorance of the decades-old, multi-billion-dollar massive Hanford nuclear waste clean-up: “Here’s something that you will rarely hear from a politician, and that is that I’m not familiar with the Hanford, uuuuhh, site, so I don’t know exactly what’s going on there. (Applause.) Now, having said that, I promise you I’ll learn about it by the time I leave here on the ride back to the airport.” I assume on that ride, a staffer reminded him that he’s voted on at least one defense authorization bill that addressed the “costs, schedules, and technical issues” dealing with the nation’s most contaminated nuclear waste site.
*Last March, the Chicago Tribune reported this little-noticed nugget about a fake autobiographical detail in Obama’s “Dreams from My Father:” “Then, there’s the copy of Life magazine that Obama presents as his racial awakening at age 9. In it, he wrote, was an article and two accompanying photographs of an African-American man physically and mentally scarred by his efforts to lighten his skin. In fact, the Life article and the photographs don’t exist, say the magazine’s own historians.”
*And in perhaps the most seriously troubling set of gaffes of them all, Obama told a Portland crowd over the weekend that Iran doesn’t “pose a serious threat to us”–cluelessly arguing that “tiny countries” with small defense budgets can’t do us harm– and then promptly flip-flopped the next day, claiming, “I’ve made it clear for years that the threat from Iran is grave.”
In his second statement about Russia's invasion of Georgia, Obama said that the Security Council of the United Nations could be helpful. OOpsie. Russia has a veto power on the Security Council so that avenue to peace is even more worthless than normal. Could that fact have eluded a normal Columbia graduate with a major in Political Science?
He recently said that he considered enlisting in the military when he signed up for selective services when he turned 18 in Hawaii (but there wasn't enough action going on so he didn't join). The trouble is he couldn't have signed up when he turned 18 in 1979, because selective services wasn't reinstated (in the weak form it has now) until a year later, under President Carter. Oh, and in neither of his two memoirs did he mention this yearning for joining the military with a war going on. I guess it was not worthy of inclusion, at least not before his opponent was a decorated Viet Nam war veteran.
"On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes — and I see many of them in the audience here today — our sense of patriotism is particularly strong."
"…Obama also spoke about his uncle, who was part of the American brigade that helped to liberate Auschwitz…" Sorry, Senator, Auschwitz, in Poland, was liberated by the Soviets.
Obama recently complained about people speaking vis a vis his Muslim faith. George Stephanopoulos had to remind him that he was a Christian. And he clearly is a Christian.
"Since the Bush Administration launched a misguided war in Iraq, its policy in the Americas has been negligent toward our friends, ineffective with our adversaries, disinterested in the challenges that matter in peoples' lives, and incapable of advancing our interests in the region.
No wonder, then, that demagogues like Hugo Chavez have stepped into this vacuum." Sorry, Obama, the Columbian dictator Chavez came to power in 1998, during the Clinton Administration. Difficult to blame President Bush for that.
"And, you know, let's take the example of Guantanamo. What we know is that, in previous terrorist attacks -- for example, the first attack against the World Trade Center, we were able to arrest those responsible, put them on trial. They are currently in U.S. prisons, incapacitated."
Well, Senator, we got some of them, but the primary builder of the bomb, Abdul Rahman Yasin, fled American justice and lived in Iraq, with Saddam's implicit permission (they pretended he was under arrest), until the invasion and then he fled to parts unknown. Not incapacitated.
Obama called the Banking Committee "my committee" when he is neither the head of it nor even on it.
And we needn't even go into detail about his calling his grandmother a "typical white person," calling the bulk of Americans 'bitter clingers to religion, guns and bigotry,' or calling a baby a "punishment"--any of which would probably have been political death if said by a Republican.
Some of these are mere slips of the tongue or ignorance, but look at the number of them and how little coverage most of them have received in the dominant leftwing media, which is so quick to pounce on the least slip or mistake of a Republican.
It's enough to cause one to think there might be double standard or something.
Monday, September 08, 2008
Our Source Was the New York Times
However, before there was reason to try to rewrite history, before Barack Obama called Sarah Palin a liar, here is what the New York Times said about this very subject:
Gov. Sarah Palin ordered state transportation officials to abandon the ''bridge to nowhere'' project that became a nationwide symbol of federal pork-barrel spending. The $398 million bridge would have connected Ketchikan, on one island in southeastern Alaska, to its airport on another nearby island.''Ketchikan desires a better way to reach the airport,'' Ms. Palin, a Republican, said in a news release, ''but the $398 million bridge is not the answer.'' She directed the State Transportation Department to find the most ''fiscally responsible'' alternative for access to the airport.
So who's lying now?
UPDATE: It's still too early to pay attention to the polls and we don't know what the relative voter turnouts will be anyway; so we shouldn't be too happy about the post convention (and Sarah Palin) bump, but Mike in Prague, a good guy of the left, said that the intrade market (where people actually risk actual money, their money I presume) is a better index for the future anyway. Obama is still ahead there but the trend lines have been marvelously good. Since the end of August, Obama has gone down 9 points and John McCain has gone up 8. That's a 17 point swing in 8 days. If you're an Obama supporter, all I can say is: Ouch. Let's see where it goes from there--51 to 48, right now, rounded off.
Democrats Begin to Panic
Thought of the Day
Labels: Barack Obama quote
More on Hypocrisy
It was inspirational to see a mother in a position of political power stand up for a child with special needs. But Palin was given a choice whether to have that child, something, if she had her way as a lawmaker, she wouldn't give others.Well first she's not a lawmaker but a governor, and as VP she would be an executive still (even though the VP gets to vote in the Senate in the very few cases of tie votes) and second, with the current decisions in the Supreme Court, no lawmaker can prevent abortions of foetuses not viable outside the womb, as abortion is apparently a cherished, yet invisible, Constitutional right.
But the doctor's logic seems to fail him. In no event would Sarah Palin prevent a mother from having any child, with Downs or not. And Dr. Parikh doesn't know if Palin would take away, if it were possible, abortions of seriously deformed babies or even if she would try to prevent abortions of Downs babies (90% of whom are aborted). If he knows what she thinks about that, he doesn't bother to show any evidence of what he described as her "outspoken beliefs." Like a quote from Sarah Palin. Am I asking too much?
Then he calls it hypocrisy:
So while I respect Palin's decision to raise Trig, that's all the respect she will get from me. I don't see eye-to-eye with her on anything else: energy, guns, sex education and of course a woman's right to choose. Her supporters say that Trig signals that she practices what she preaches. But her to decision to have him is also a sign of her hypocrisy.
Although doctors almost always feel they are the smartest humans in the room, like us mere humans, they are often wrong.
I do thank him for updating and correcting my vernacular. I had called Downs Syndrome triploidy 23, but he calls it trisomy 21. He obviously is correct about that.
Labels: Sarah Palin
Who Are You Going to Believe?
It seems to say that the extent of the ice is just .3 million square kilometers above last year, which is about a 10% difference.
Yet on the same site, you can compare this day's composite photo from space with last year's composite photo. That's the side by side comparison below. Does it look like so little a difference to you?
Looks more like a 30% difference to me. I've contacted the guy they say to send questions to in order to see what's up. I'll report back, but he's never responded to a question from me yet.
Labels: Arctic Sea Ice Anomaly
Report on American War Dead in Iraq and Afghanistan
In Iraq, seven servicemen died from IEDs. That's low but not low enough. Two were killed by small arms and five in combat operations. That doesn't indicate a lot of stand up combat. Six died from non combat or non hostile causes--one in Bahrain and one in Kuwait. Four died in accidents. One died in a mortar attack. One of the guys killed in combat operations was wounded in 6/05 and died in 9/07 and an autopsy changed the category.
In Afghanistan, nine also were killed by IEDs and five were killed in combat operations. Three were killed by small arms, one was killed by a land mine and one was killed by unknown causes while on patrol.
Two women were killed (both by non-combat causes)--Jennifer L. Cole, 34, of American Canyon, CA and Janelle F. King, 23, of Merced, CA. The officers lost were: Capt. Garrett T. Lawton, 31, Charleston, WV (Combat operations in Afghanistan); Ist Lt.. Donald C. Carwile, 29, Oxford, Miss. (IED in Afghanistan); and, 2nd Lt. Michael R Girdano, 23, from Pennsylvania (IED in Afghanistan).
Our thoughts and prayers go out to all our brave warriors and their families.
This Day in the History of Russian Successes
Labels: Russian Successes
Sunday, September 07, 2008
Categorizing American Attitudes About Abortion
- There are those who think that human life does not begin at conception and certainly the non-human has no human (or American Constitutional) rights and can be
killedterminated at the will or even whim of the mother. This camp thinks that what goes on inside the mother is only the mothers' concern and no one else can make any judgement or law concerning it. This is generally the pro-choice crowd. I wouldn't think that many of them are actually pro abortion. They have Supreme Court precedents, most importantly Planned Parenthood of Southeast Pa. v. Casey, on their side, and therefore, no law can seriously intrude on the mother's medical choice regarding the foetus in her womb.
- There are those who think that human life does indeed begin at conception but that the foetus does not get rights until birth. This allows members of this camp to disparage but not criminalize abortions of 'not viable outside the womb' foetuses. Members of this camp, and I am one, are with the Catholic Church's teaching that abortions to save the mother's life are OK as a living mother is more important than a not yet born baby. Unlike with Catholics, there is room in this camp for differing opinions about abortions after rape and incest. Just as in early American history it was not murder to kill a slave (as the slave had life, obviously, but no rights), it is at least legal to kill the foetus for other reasons.
- The final camp are the pro-lifers, who think that human life and human rights both begin at conception and abortion or the use of abortifacients are the exact same as murder, indeed, is the worst sort of murder, the slaughter of the innocent. They counter the charge of being against choice by saying that the mother seeking abortion is taking away the unvoiced choice of the baby to live, and that we don't recognize the choice some women make to murder their small born children after birth (or their husbands, sisters, friends or strangers) as socially tolerable.
I don't have much more to say about the merits of the different positions. except that each seems to be internally, logically sound. I do wonder, however, if there are substantial positions which I have left out. I also don't know the relative membership of each of the three camps. If I had to guess, I'd say three is the most numerous one, but I really don't know.
This Day in the History of Show Business Rivalries Turning Deadly
The photo is of Tupac and Suge Knight 20 minutes before the shooting.
Labels: Tupac Shakur
Saturday, September 06, 2008
The Cure For the Left's Sneering, Condescending Hatred Hole Regarding Sarah Palin--More Diggin'
There are, unfortunately, no highlights.
A Useful Source
A Line Too Far
Here is some more:
Here’s what I believe: that the 2nd Amendment is an individual right and it means something -- that people have a right to bear arms. What I also believe is that there is nothing wrong with some common sense gun safety measures.
“If you’ve got a gun in your house, I’m not taking it"
But he didn't think he was convincing them, so he kept talking (as usual when he's off teleprompter) and probably wishes he didn't say this:
Even if I want to take them away, I don’t have the votes in Congress
Oh, so he has thought about taking away our guns but realized that he couldn't get it done politically so now he is saying that he doesn't want to ban guns when his zig-zag, straddle history and past votes, along with his recently revealed thoughts, all show just the opposite.
To quote our president. Fool me once shame on you...The point is we won't get fooled again.
Friday, September 05, 2008
The Left's Idea of Free Speech
You can't talk if I want to talk over you and you can't shut me up no matter how
inappropriate my ravings are.
Of course we can shut you up as this photo clearly shows.
It looks like Code Pink loon Medea (Sally) Benjamin disrupting a speech at the RNC. Do right wingers disrupt any speeches? ANY? Because my memory of speechs recently disrupted by lefties is about 20 incidents long.
Class--Either You Have It or You Don't
Finally, a word to Senator Obama and his supporters. We'll go at it over the next two months. That's the nature of these contests, and there are big differences between us. But you have my respect and admiration. Despite our differences, much more unites us than divides us. We are fellow Americans, an association that means more to me than any other. We're dedicated to the proposition that all people are created equal and endowed by our Creator with inalienable rights. No country ever had a greater cause than that. And I wouldn't be an American worthy of the name if I didn't honor Senator Obama and his supporters for their achievement.
On the other hand, here is what the Obama site contains in the way of congratulations to John McCain:
I could repeat the headline, but it's no longer necessary.
Labels: 2008 Presidential Race
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Gloria Steinem--Still Clueless About Basic Biology
Gloria also said Governor Palin was out of touch for these beliefs
[Palin] opposes just about every issue that women support by a majority or plurality. She believes that creationism should be taught in public schools but disbelieves global warming; she opposes gun control but supports government control of women's wombs; she opposes stem cell research but approves "abstinence-only" programs, which increase unwanted births, sexually transmitted diseases and abortions; she tried to use taxpayers' millions for a state program to shoot wolves from the air but didn't spend enough money to fix a state school system with the lowest high-school graduation rate in the nation; she runs with a candidate who opposes the Fair Pay Act but supports $500 million in subsidies for a natural gas pipeline across Alaska; she supports drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve, though even McCain has opted for the lesser evil of offshore drilling. She is Phyllis Schlafly, only younger.