Friday, March 16, 2012


If you remember when being radical meant hating the government, rather than relying on it, you're probably old

See this car? Its 115 years old, the 1896 Roberts electric car:

It has a 40 mile range per charge, exactly the same as the Chevy Volt. Somehow, we're supposed to believe that the Volt is cutting edge science, a giant leap forward in technology. Hat tip American Digest for the link.

Feeling old? Zombie at Pajamas Media has a list of ways you can tell if you seem old to younger people, such as:
  • If you’ve ever changed a typewriter ribbon
  • If you remember when only sailors had tattoos
  • If you ever waited to hear your favorite song on the radio
  • If you still feel a twinge of dread seeing a phone number with a lot of “9″s and “0″s
  • If you think a nice warm day is just a nice warm day and not proof of impending doom
  • If the phrase “turn of the century” makes you think of the year 1900
  • If you remember when being on welfare was embarrassing
  • If you know what VHS stands for
  • If you ever got out of the car to open the garage door
  • If you ever turned a knob to change the station
  • If you ever looked something up in a card catalog
  • If you’ve ever owned an encyclopedia
And related to that last one...

Encyclopedia Britannica has stopped printing. They only sold 8000 copies last year, and while it never was a huge seller, that wasn't enough to justify the expense and trouble of making new editions. Now, people tend to look things up online and God help us trust Wikipedia. That big 32-volume set wasn't just a reference work, it was decoration of a home, proof you were erudite, and much more reliable and scholarly than Ask Yahoo. Each volume was a work of art, and owning a set was something to be proud of. Now they're focusing on online and educational publishing.

President Obama recently gave a speech demonstrating what his calls to Civility and healing discourse are about by relentlessly mocking anyone and everyone who dares to disagree with him. In it he suggested people opposing throwing huge sums of money at failing green companies who cannot produce viable products are similar to "flat earthers." He went on to compare them to Rutherford B Hayes, who he claimed refused to allow a telephone in his home.
Except... that's not true.

The reference was so wrong even the Washington Post had to admit it was false, and that Hayes was fascinated in new technology. He's had a lot of problems with past presidents, such as the claim that Lincoln founded the Republican Party or that Thomas Jefferson hosted a Muslim friendly Iffar feast for Ramadan. I guess that's what happens when you let 20-something frat boys write your speeches.

Egypt continues its push toward liberty, justice, and democracy as more than 300 Muslim lawyers stormed a court to block any Christian lawyers entrance to defend a client. Egypt is turning out exactly how folks like me warned it would.

Speaking of Egypt, we have this news out of Washington DC; Congress passed a law forbidding any or weapons trade to Egypt or aid to use on its military until the country shows progress in basic freedoms and human rights - which are going in the opposite direction. But that won't stop the Obama administration, according to William Wan at the Washington Post:
But Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is close to announcing plans to bypass those restrictions on national security grounds for fear of worsening already fraying ties with Egyptian leaders and disrupting American jobs and U.S. defense contracts that make up the bulk of the military aid, according to senior administration officials and others, who have been briefed on the deliberations but were not authorized to speak publicly.
Meanwhile, Egypt is voting on whether to maintain the treaty with Israel brokered by Sadat and has declared Israel their "greatest enemy." But Obama is Israel's greatest friend. Just ask him, but don't believe him, according to Hillary.

Coffee, a civil right? That's what Allysia Finley writes in a satirical article in the Wall Street Journal, arguing that employers should be forced by law to provide coffee to everyone at their expense, because its such a critical productivity and human rights issue. The problem with this kind of effort is that the left has gotten so outrageous and absurd that its difficult to parody or satirize them. I have no doubt this topic will come up in the future, for real next time.

Carbonite pulled its ads from Rush Limbaugh, an act that hasn't exactly worked out well for their stock sales or bottom line. But just a few months ago (courtesy Legal Insurrection), the founder argued that having ads on controversial shows like Howard Stern was just good sales:
We’ve pretty well booked up every major talk radio show host in the country, who knows how to sale. Over 40 of them. It included Howard Stern, I mean it’s the whole gamut. So when we started going down this path I said, “Look, I’m going to go crazy if I have to sit here and parse the politic leanings of all of these radio show people, because some of them are left some of them are right, some of them are just crazy, and forget it, all I care about is I’m going to give you the money, you’re going to use Carbonite yourself, because we don’t want people talking about Carbonite unless they’re actually users. I’m not going to give you the subscription for free, they’ve got to buy it, and they have to talk about it from the heart. I don’t want any canned commercials. So when it comes time to talk about Carbonite, you stop talking about politics or whatever you’re talking about and you talk about Carbonite for a minute. And that’s all that matters around so if you can sell Carbonite and convince people that you use it, you love it, and you should go try it. If you can do that, we’re going to continue to support you.”
I guess he changed his mind.

Unable to just come out in opposition to guns or enforce the gun control he wants, President Obama's staff has come up with other ways. From blocking sales of Filipino guns in the US to trying to create a crisis through Fast & Furious, the left is using every back door way to slow and stop gun sales they can. I warned about this a year or so ago, but here's the latest effort courtesy Douglas M Mann at the New York Times:
Citing risks to birds and to human health, roughly 100 environmental groups formally asked the federal Environmental Protection Agency this week to ban or at least impose limits on lead in the manufacturing of bullets and shotgun pellets for hunting or recreation.

The use of such ammo by hunters puts about 3,000 pounds of lead into the environment annually and causes the death of 20 million birds each year from lead poisoning, said Jeff Miller, a conservation advocate at one of the groups, the Center for Biological Diversity.
Is there a real problem? Highly unlikely given the fact that people have been hunting for centuries with lead bullets and never has there been the slightest evidence of ecological damage. Will the EPA leap into this feet first anyway? I'd be shocked if they didn't.

Bastard Blasters is a company in Centralia Washington that puts out clay pigeons for trap shooting emblazoned with a caricature of a political figure on them. Now you can load up your machine with Nancy Pelosi or Sarah Palin and shoot them! Their website boldly states this isn't about targeting politicians and intends no violence toward them but seriously? Does anyone think this is remotely a good idea?

Planned Parenthood has already gotten into trouble after rogue new media reporter James O'Keefe showed their clinics telling how to help a pimp prostitute underage girls and skip tax laws. Now it seems they've been filing fraudulent medicare claims as well. Mark Tapscott writes at the Washington Examiner:
The suit - filed by the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) - alleges that Planned Parenthood of Houston submitted at least 87,075 "false, fraudulent, or ineligible claims" for Medicaid reimbursement under Title XIX of the program with the Texas Women’s Health Program.

The claims were filed between 2007 and 2009 and were valued at more than $5.7 million, according to the suit. The suit was filed by ADF in 2009 on behalf of former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson.
Well, I'm sure they are not guilty, clearly they're such an up front and honest group of people. They'd never bend the rules to help people they figure are oppressed and minorities.

James O'Keefe has continued his investigative journalism, this time showing how easy it is to get dead people signed up and given a ballot in Vermont. The Vermont government leapt into action after the report came out, swiftly striking to prosecute... James O'Keefe. Well if there's one thing most hated by people in power, its making them look bad.

Planned Parenthood's Lubbock Texas headquarters is led by a man named Tony Lee Thornton. He was arrested recently and charged with indecent exposure for flashing his naughty bits at a park full of families and small children.

Even though it costs many times more than conventional fuel, is being produced only in small amounts, and pollutes at least as much as normal fuel, the Obama military is insisting on buying biofuels for the Navy. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced a plan to extend this concept to the entire military soon. Because the US is not over 15 trillion dollars in debt, or anything.

Although the New York Times continues to hemorrhage subscriptions and loses money constantly, when Janet Robinson left the position of CEO last year, she was paid a $24 million golden parachute. Funny, seems to me I recall their editorial section attacking this sort of thing.

Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL) was recently given an award by the Communist Party USA for a life time of service and inspiring leadership. He was praised strongly by President Obama in the past and claims there's no reason at all to be concerned about Communism.

Surprising only Congressman Nelson (D-NE), the Obama administration finalized rules for the Government Health Insurance Takeover Act so that it covers abortion, despite the president's promises and meaningless executive order that this would never happen. In fact, every promise the president gave about GHITA has been broken, from cost savings to keeping your own doctor to not being a socialized medicine trojan horse.

David Copperage worked for NASA on the Cassini Project as team leader, exploring Saturn's moons. He was let go from the agency, and he's suing, claiming he was fired because he's an outspoken proponent of Intelligent Design. The agency lawyers claim he was let go simply because the project was over, which begs the question why didn't they keep him for anything else? I wouldn't at all be surprised if NASA did dump him over ID, given the political and academic atmosphere there.

According to polling data, after two weeks of claiming the GOP hates women and hysterical, non stop outrage by the left over Sandra Fluke... President Obama has lost support among women. How true that is I'm not sure, although since pollsters lately tend to heavily over-sample Democrats its possible (the more a poll goes against the pollster's expectations, the more I tend to trust it).

Maybe there's another explanation, though. Mickey Kaus has a theory, which seems to be supported by evidence, that the more President Obama is in the news and making public appearances, the worse he does in polling. Almost as if people like the idea of a President Obama, but not the actuality of him.

However, the left has the opposite planned: the Summer of Obama has already begun. First there's the fawning bio short on the president by Davis Guggenheim, who claims he couldn't find anything negative at all about the man. Then there's American Idol's Obama night in which a contestant sang a duet with Obama when he appeared at the Apollo Theater and sang Al Green's "Let's Stay Together." Expect more of this, but I'm not so sure its a good idea for Obama's reelection efforts.

California's woes continue. I was confused why on earth Californians would conceivably vote for Jerry Brown again, but I think I understand now: they weren't planning on sticking around for the damage anyway. California tax revenue has plunged by 22% this year from a combination of poor business climate and people simply leaving the state. Several major companies such as Apple are moving to Texas, where business is much more liked and less punished.

According to recent data, three in ten young adults are living with their parents again, even after college. With unemployment for that age group pushing toward 50%, its no surprise, but some seem to want to blame Wall Street for their lack of jobs and opportunities.

President Obama boasted he'd have a billion-dollar campaign fund to work with, but there are signs he's not doing as well as even 2008. Not only are his pleas for funds in lower amounts (send $5 instead of send $25) but he's going out campaigning so much the president's daily fundraising agenda looks like a movie schedule. Wonder how he does his job while he's out shaking hands and trying to squeeze money out of folks? that's something that has always bothered me about presidents seeking reelection. The only one that seemed to want to stay on the job was George Bush the elder, and he lost.

Missouri mom Sherrie Gavan found out who was dealing heroin to her son, so she grabbed a baseball bat and gave him a visit. She's being held by the police for beating the man, but I doubt the 4' 11" mom will see any sort of criminal penalties. You might be a rough and mean drug dealer but when a protective mom comes at you, start running.

Poland, before WW2, was a major rival to Germany in chemistry and science. And it seems like to this day the Germans want to keep the Poles down. Today the Germans keep criticizing and attacking the efforts by Poland to build nuclear power plants. Sure, they are clean and efficient, sure they generate power without pollution and are reliable, but they are declared bad by the "greens" and hence opposed. When the Poles point out that for decades, Germany has run on nuclear power without incident or danger, the greens claim they're going to be shut down for "renewable" energy, according to new legislation. Yeah, that'll happen.

Chris Rock is a pretty funny guy and I like his stand up but frankly he's an idiot when it comes to politics. He's been relentless in his support of President Obama (guess why) and incredibly hostile toward the Tea Party. When a man and a woman approached him with a camera and asked him why he thinks the Tea Party is racist, things got... interesting:
The confrontation, which took place around 2:00 a.m. on January 23, 2012, at Spike Lee’s Sundance Film Festival after party at Tao night club, ended with Chris Rock challenging the conservative author to a fight, says Mr. Mattera:

“Chris Rock shouted, ‘You want to throw down? Let’s throw down right now!’ Of course, he was standing safely behind two bodyguards when he said it.”
Rock ripped the camera out of the woman's hand and threw it away, then challenged Mattera to a fight. What a tough guy.

Bruce Springsteen is another tough guy, his latest album calling repeatedly for violence against the rich and powerful in support of the Occupy movement. Lyrics to songs include lines like these:

And all them fat cats they just think it’s funny
I’m going on the town now looking for easy money

I got a Smith & Wesson .38
I got a hellfire burning and I got me a taste…
Now sometimes tomorrow comes soaked in treasure and blood…
So you use what you’ve got, and you learn to make do
You take the old, you make it new
If I had me a gun, I’d find the bastards and shoot ‘em on sight.
So listen up my sonny boy
be ready when they come
for they’ll be returning
sure as the rising sun
…send the robber barons straight to hell
(sfx: cocking shotgun)

One would think this would be considered an uncivil call to violence against one's political enemies, but since he's on the left that's not any cause for concern, I suppose.

Blacks and Hispanics have been disproportionately affected by unemployment in the Obama administration, which doesn't bode well for their support in the upcoming election. Supposedly the Obama team has written off the white working class, but that seems like an awfully big voting bloc to just consider a loss.

Oregon's population is estimated at 3,831,074, with the Portland metro area holding 2,637,944 of those people. According to the latest data, more than 800,000 Oregonians received food stamps in January of this year, nearly a quarter of the population of the state. That's more total than the entire population of Portland, Oregon. And people get mad when Newt Gingrich calls Obama the "foodstamp president"?

Occupy tried to crash a Romney event but it didn't do well. Perhaps if they had genuine grass roots interest and an honest uprising of people instead of having to hire union folks and sign them in to work, they'd do a bit better. Its harder and harder to take this "movement" seriously.

Angry white women are controlling the narrative and culture wars, according to Courtland Milloy at the Washington Post. He makes a pretty good case:
Perhaps the answer is obvious: the white woman decides who gets heard in such matters. By her own efforts, but also through her unique access to wealthy men, she builds institutions to support her causes. Other women may sit at the table, but she alone speaks on their behalf.
You didn't see a lot of black women even comment on the Flake nonsense, or many black people period in the news for several years now. And rich white leftist women are in charge of all the social events, fundraisers and causes while they live off wealthy white rich men.

Antarctica is losing ice!! We're all doomed! Well, that's what we've been told for several years now. Except new evidence strongly suggests the ice hasn't changed, its the land mass that is shifting. In fact, it appears that evidence of sea level rises in the distant past were due more to land rebounding from millions of tons of ice melting away than any actual sea level - the land was depressed as the ice melted and slowly lifted up as the weight went away, making the sea levels appear high.

Another occupy movement rape has taken place. When nothing bad is happening, the occupy movement claims we're all part of the 99% and they represent all the poor and downtrodden. When this kind of thing happens, suddenly they don't represent the Occupiers. I just wonder how often this happened at hippie sit-ins and protests in the 60s and 70s but nobody ever covered it?

Leftists keep repeating a set of talking points on gas prices. The first is that they have nothing whatsoever to do with President Obama or his policies. That's not true; his policies have resulted in deflation of the value of the dollar, which makes gas prices go up, and his blocking drilling in major areas has speculators expecting gas prices to rise. But there are other errors in the left's arguments.

For example, Although drilling is at a higher level now than in the past, those permits were from Bush-era licensing, not Obama era. And it turns out, President Obama has tried to block off as much as he can, according to Investor's Business Daily:
Obama has chosen almost always to limit production. He canceled leases on federal lands in Utah, suspended them in Montana, delayed them in Colorado and Utah, and canceled lease sales off the Virginia coast.

His administration also has been slow-walking permits in the Gulf of Mexico, approving far fewer while stretching out review times, according to the Greater New Orleans Gulf Permit Index. The Energy Dept. says Gulf oil output will be down 17% by the end of 2013, compared with the start of 2011.
So drilling might be up, but its less than it would have been, and will be declining, based on Obama's efforts.

Tax season is upon us, and if you have a small business, you probably have someone do your taxes. Well the IRS wants to stop that, because those preparers aren't paying the IRS for a license. Last year, the agency just decided it was going to start requiring licenses for preparing taxes, even though they were given no congressional approval or power to do so. That's pretty common now in the Obama administration: if congress won't do what he wants, he does it anyway through an agency.

And that's the Word Around the Net for March 16, 2012.

1 comment:

Larry Sheldon said...

Guilty on every "If".