29 November 2008

Who'd Log On to Get Doonsbury, Anyway?

P.J. O'Rourke is still the master:
The government is bailing out Wall Street for being evil and the car companies for being stupid. But print journalism brings you Paul Krugman and Anna Quindlen. Also, in 1898 Joseph Pulitzer of the New York World and William Randolph Hearst of the New York Journal started the Spanish-American War. All of the Lehman Brothers put together couldn't cause as much evil stupidity as that.

Moreover, rescuing print journalism is a "two-fer." Not only will America's principal source of Sudoku puzzles and Doonesbury be preserved but so will an endangered species--the hard-bitten, cynical, heavy-drinking news hound with a press card in his hatband, a cigarette stub dangling from his lip, and free ringside prize fight tickets tucked into his vest pocket. These guys don't reproduce in captivity. And there are hardly any of them left in the wild. I checked the bar. Just Mike Barnicle, as usual. How's tricks, Mike? Where'd everybody go? Sun's over the yardarm. Time to pour lunch.
Game, set, match; O'Rourke.

Ruttan on Mumbai

From the LA Times:
Mumbai was selected not simply because it was a so-called soft target but because it is a symbol of modernity in the world's most populous democracy. The city the West first knew as Bombay is today the symbol of India's place in the modern world, as the center not only of banking, commerce and a burgeoning high-tech sector but one of the world's great film industries. (It's worth recalling that when the Taliban swept to power in Afghanistan, one of the first things it did was to close the cinemas and ban DVDs from Mumbai's Bollywood.)

The places the killers struck -- luxury hotels, a railway station, a hospital for women and children, the Chabad Jewish center -- are all powerfully linked in the popular mind with the modern world. As the French philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy has argued, the jihadis have linked anti-Americanism, anti-British sentiment (the assumption is that London is Washington's lap dog) and anti-Semitic antagonism toward Zionism into a potent new ideology. To the extent it seems to find an increasingly sympathetic hearing in some fashionable sectors of the intellectual West, including the U.S., Levy correctly labels it "the socialism of imbeciles."Like all the totalitarian movements that have come before it, hatred of liberty and Jews is the real foundation of contemporary jihadism, and not the traditions of Islam or its canonical prescriptions.

Your Next Car

Hope you like it - it might be the only thing left to buy soon:
All new for 2012, the Pelosi GTxi SS/Rt Sport Edition is the mandatory American car so advanced it took $100 billion and an entire Congress to design it. We started with same reliable 7-way hybrid ethanol-biodeisel-electric-clean coal-wind-solar-pedal power plant behind the base model Pelosi, but packed it with extra oomph and the sassy styling pizazz that tells the world that 1974 Detroit is back again -- with a vengeance.

We've subsidized the features you want and taxed away the rest. With its advanced Al Gore-designed V-3 under the hood pumping out 22.5 thumping, carbon-neutral ponies of Detroit muscle, you'll never be late for the Disco or the Day Labor Shelter. Engage the pedal drive or strap on the optional jumbo mizzenmast, and the GTxi SS/Rt Sport Edition easily exceeds 2016 CAFE mileage standards. At an estimated 268 MPG, that's a savings of nearly $1800 per week in fuel cost over the 2011 Pelosi.

Even with increased performance we didn't skimp on safety. With 11-point passenger racing harnesses, 15-way airbags, and mandatory hockey helmet, you'll have the security knowing that you could survive a 45 MPH collision even if the GTxi SS/Rt were capable of that kind of illegal speed.
I see that the story 'predicts' that Ted Kennedy will be involved. Wonder if that means the car will also float.

28 November 2008

Garbage in the News

Imagine a National Hockey League game. The coach taps a player on the shoulder and tells him he'll go in the game on the the next shift. The player turns around and says to the coach "No, I don't think so."

Can you imagine that? Of course not. But try imagining it's a basketball game; somehow it's way more believable:
The New York Knicks have suspended guard Stephon Marbury one game, without pay, for refusing to play in Wednesday's game against Detroit.

"A player's central obligation is to provide his professional services when called upon," said Knicks president Donnie Walsh in making the announcement. "Because he refused the coach's request to play in the team's last game, we had no choice but to impose disciplinary action."

According to the New York Post, Wednesday was the second instance in which Marbury was asked to play and refused. The Knicks are on the hook for Marbury's $21.9 million salary this season. If the club waives him, Marbury will inevitably clear waivers in two days and become a free agent.
There is none too severe a way to declare Marbury a colossal loser.

20 November 2008

I Can See Clearly Now the Rain is Gone

It's gonna be a bright sunshine-y day!

Oh there's so much more . . . if you've got the stomach for it.

15 November 2008

Gone Darker


Sad times at the dog farm. We lost one to cancer.

I've had dogs basically my whole life. Cinder was the first one that I had any say in acquiring. This morning I was part of the decision to let her leave - also my first. Like the rest of the pack, Cinder was a second-hand dog that became a first-class member of our lives. We speculated she was the runt of her litter, being slight for a Labrador Retriever, but she carried heart enough for the largest of breeds. She was both a happy and stoic dog. Sometimes she seemed to carry herself with her head down, figuratively and literally. Content to play the role of the #3 dog here on the farm, she never really took a back seat to any other.

Cinder was still water running deep. She was a casual city dog in the city and went into High Instinct Mode when traipsing rural tracts. She never demonstrated much interest in birds or varmints, but I remember the first time she heard a coyote howl. She froze solid at an open window, ears locked forward and head up. You could have crashed cymbals together behind her and not broken her attention. That was the same weekend we saw her accept a big, new bone, run to the edge of the yard, dig a hole and bury it; just like in cartoons. It was the only time I've seen a dog actually bury a bone.

She also was quite unimpressed with other dogs. During a neighborhood walk or trips to dog parks, she accepted our custom of meeting and greeting others, but she took that in stride, never strained a leash or ran ahead just for sniffs. On the rare occasion another dog might display aggression toward any of us, Cinder, the smallest of us, flashed her teeth, shot up her fur and charged forward declaring she was the one to be dealt with first. After a few seconds of that rare but warranted Ms. Hyde, she put it away and went back to her normal Doggie Jeckyl.

For Mrs. Octane and myself, Cinder was not our first dog, but she was the first that required us to face that awful decision. We thank her for enriching our lives, rounding out the pack, her companionship to the old Golden Retriever and her guidance to the young Great Dane/Mastiff/Clydesdale. They will miss her in their own ways and then move on as dogs do.

There's nothing like a good sturdy breed, and fourteen years is an excellent run for a Labrador Retriever, but it wasn't long enough.

It's never long enough.

14 November 2008

More Reasons Al Queda Hates Us

We do not shove our women into society's back seat:

FORT BELVOIR, Va. - Lt. Gen. Ann E. Dunwoody will become the first female four-star general in U.S. military history Friday, and later that day will assume command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command from Gen. Benjamin S. Griffin in a 2 p.m. ceremony at the AMC headquarters parade field.
RDF congratulates Gen. Dunwoody and would gladly sit down for some beers with her.

11 November 2008


Fred is Agitated

And I don't blame him:
(Fred Smith) has come to hold the get-rich-quick Wall Street financiers in more than a little disdain. He views the heroes of the U.S. economy as the companies that actually produce real goods and services. He sees the Wall Street collapse as an inevitable byproduct of investment bankers building multitrillion dollar debt pyramid structures.

He sees a big problem in that so few Americans now pay any income tax. "We're now at a point where a very large part of the population pays no federal income tax at all. When you have a majority of the population that realizes that you can transfer money from the productive to themselves, that's one of the great questions for the future of civilization, as far as I'm concerned."

"Many of our current policies are not conducive to continued economic leadership. We restrict immigration when we have thousands of highly educated people that want to come to the United States, and some of our greatest corporations [are] crying out that we don't have the scientific talent that we need to develop the next generation of innovations and inventions . . .

"That's where all wealth comes from . . . It's not from the government. It's from invention and entrepreneurship and innovation. And our policies promote a legal and regulatory system which impedes our ability to grow entrepreneurship. Lastly, if we want to make [America's workers] wealthier we have to quit demonizing quote, big corporations."
Read it all. It'll help you laugh at the childlike explanations the economy you get from Tee Vee news.

Utopia; Found On No Map

Roger Kimball:

“Utopia” is Greek for “nowhere”: a made-up word for a make-believe place. The search for nowhere inevitably deprecates any and every “somewhere.” Socialism, which is based on incorrigible optimism about human nature, is a species of utopianism. It experiences the friction of reality as an intolerable brake on its expectations. “Utopians,” the philosopher Leszek Kolakowski observed in “The Death of Utopia Reconsidered,” “once they attempt to convert their visions into practical proposals, come up with the most malignant project ever devised: they want to institutionalize fraternity, which is the surest way to totalitarian despotism.”

Obamania may be a harmless enthusiasm that will spend itself naturally in the coming weeks. Then again, its “spread-the-wealth-around,” egalitarian tendencies may presage something far graver. It’s just possible that Obama actually believes what he says about redistributing wealth and sitting down for cozy chats with dictators, etc. In that case, the country is in for a very rude awakening.

'Til Death Do Us Part

Unless you trun into a raving lunatic in the meantime.

10 November 2008

Change You Should Have Seen Coming

Pay no mind to the behind-the-curtain act of The One you've annointed:

Over the weekend President-elect Barack Obama scrubbed Change.gov, his transition Web site, deleting most of what had been a massive agenda copied directly from his campaign Web site.

Gone are the promises on how an Obama administration would handle 25 different agenda items - everything from Iraq and immigration to taxes and urban policy - all items laid out on his campaign Web site, www.BarackObama.com.

That didn't take long did it?

09 November 2008

In Case Flight Simulator is Way Too Intense.

That's right, someone developed Farm Simulator.

It's only for the most bold among us.

08 November 2008

Oh By the Way . . .

Guess who thinks the Washinton Post was in the bag for Obama - The Washington Post:
The Post provided a lot of good campaign coverage, but readers have been consistently critical of the lack of probing issues coverage and what they saw as a tilt toward Democrat Barack Obama. My surveys, which ended on Election Day, show that they are right on both counts.

The op-ed page ran far more laudatory opinion pieces on Obama, 32, than on Sen. John McCain, 13. There were far more negative pieces (58) about McCain than there were about Obama (32), and Obama got the editorial board's endorsement. The Post has several conservative columnists, but not all were gung-ho about McCain.

Counting from June 4, Obama was in 311 Post photos and McCain in 282. Obama led in most categories. Obama led 133 to 121 in pictures more than three columns wide, 178 to 161 in smaller pictures, and 164 to 133 in color photos. In black and white photos, the nominees were about even, with McCain at 149 and Obama at 147.

But Obama deserved tougher scrutiny than he got, especially of his undergraduate years, his start in Chicago and his relationship with Antoin "Tony" Rezko, who was convicted this year of influence-peddling in Chicago. The Post did nothing on Obama's acknowledged drug use as a teenager.

One gaping hole in coverage involved Joe Biden, Obama's running mate. When Gov. Sarah Palin was nominated for vice president, reporters were booking the next flight to Alaska. Some readers thought The Post went over Palin with a fine-tooth comb and neglected Biden. They are right; it was a serious omission.

Well ain't that a coker? Thanks for copping to that now. To the Washington Post and other dead tree establishment media - see ya in the recycling bin.

04 November 2008

O Rly?

Four years you say?

Well, at least I'm not leaving the country.

03 November 2008

"I'm Telling Everyone."

If you do it, you're a criminal. If I do the same thing, I'm saving the world.
(A) visiting instructor at St. Olaf, Philip Busse, confessed on The Huffington Post blog site to stealing several John McCain campaign yard signs along a rural stretch of Highway 19 in southern Minnesota. Over the summer, the highway had been "speckled” with yard signs for the Republican presidential nominee, Mr. Busse wrote. “By early October, however, there were no McCain-Palin campaign signs on the eastbound stretch of Highway 19. It wasn’t because loyalties had switched, but because I pulled them out.”
Is this guy seven years old or what?

Mr. Busse goes on to say that “yanking out the signs and running like a scared rabbit back to my idling car was one of the single-most exhilarating and empowering political acts that I have ever done.”
Oh yea, crime is okay as long as you believe it's 'political.' Maybe I could bloody his nose and he'd be fine with it solong as my motoves were political. Can you believe someone with such an immature and narrow perspective has a teaching position at a place charging $44K for tuition? Seems like the new-hire screening process is a bit lacking down there.
(A) St. Olaf spokesman is quoted, saying that Mr. Busse’s actions are “in direct conflict with the college’s values and mission, and we do not in any way condone them.’
Okay, then fire this clown. Why does everything on Earth so pathetically one-sided with some people?

UPDATE: From Oregon, drives a Subaru; what a shocker!

When the Dummies Tell You to Not Be Dumb

So what if they registered Mickey Mouse; he can't actaully vote, right?
ACORN's second line of defense has been that fraudulent registrations can't turn into fraudulent votes, as if the felony of polluting voter lists was somehow not all that serious. But that defense goes only a short distance. "How would you know if people using fake names had cast votes in states without strict ID laws?" says GOP Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita, who this year won a major Supreme Court case upholding his state's photo identification law. "It's almost impossible to detect and once the fraudulent voter leaves the precinct or casts an absentee ballot, that vote is thrown in with other secret ballots there's no way to trace it."

Put Your Hands Up for Detroit!

If Obama’s economic policies work so well, why isn’t Detroit a paradise?

In 1950, America produced 51% of the GNP for the entire world. Of that production, roughly 70% took place in the eight states surrounding the Great Lakes: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York.

The productive capability of this small area of earth staggers the imagination. Virtually everything that rebuilt the industrial bases of Europe and Japan came from those eight states. Cars, planes, electronics, machine tools, consumer goods, generators, concrete - any conceivable item manufactured by industrial humanity poured out this tiny region and enriched the world. The region shone with widespread prosperity. People migrated from the South and West to work in these Herculean engines of industry.

The wealth, power and economic dominance of the region at the time cannot be overstated. Nothing like it has existed in human history. Yet, a mere 30 years later, by 1980, we called that area the “rustbelt” and it became synonymous with joblessness, collapsing cities, high crime, failing schools and general hopelessness. What the hell happened?

Obama happened.

Read it all.

02 November 2008