Saturday, January 30, 2010

Friday, January 29, 2010

So Elizabeth Bathory was right??

This article from Technology Review says that young mouse blood has a rejuvenating effect on old mice.  So maybe Bathory was on to something back in the 1610.  Rumor has it she killed over 600 girls and young women and bathed in their blood to maintain her youth.  Right idea, wrong method since the Technology Review article says that scientists linked up the circulatory systems of the mice.

Okay, at least they're admitting it now (some of the FORMER Obama supporters)

Latest one to jump ship--The Obama Girl.  It's interesting that she was one of those viral media sensations that really helped put Obama over the top, but now it seems that she's actually THINKING!  Best quote:
"He did create some jobs, but most of them were government jobs and that doesn't really help the middle class," she added.
Amazing that even The Obama Girl knows this, but Obama seems to be oblivious to economic reality.

via JammieWearingFool via Instapundit via Newsbusters.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Something that just jelled for me from the SOTU address

One of the things that I've been hearing about a lot, and have even blogged about, is that the folks in power in Washington right now, for the most part, seem to have elitist 'we're smarter than you because we're elite and we know better because we went to Ivy League schools'.  I don't think that any single quote from the SOTU address last night exemplifies that attitude like this one regarding the health care reform bill:
Still, this is a complex issue, and the longer it was debated, the more skeptical people became. I take my share of the blame for not explaining it more clearly to the American people. And I know that with all the lobbying and horse-trading, the process left most Americans wondering, "What's in it for me?"
For my part, I'd like for him to TRY to explain the ins-and-outs of a 2200 page bill using small words that even I, since I did not attend Harvard, can understand.  I have to admit that I took almost personal umbrage at that last line too since it showed a complete lack of understanding of the problem that the American people were having with the bribes that were being given for Senatorial votes.  The problem wasn't that Americans were wondering "what's in it for ME?" (since we know that it's higher taxes, lack of choices, and small businesses going under) but we were wondering "what's in it for THEM?"  He also seemed to try to blame outside lobbyists for actions that Congress itself was doing in-house.  It's not like a lobbyist offered Ben Nelson anything--it was the Democratic leadership of the United States Congress.

Like Mr. B said in his first draft of the STFU SOTU Address:
Let me be clear: if you folks would have just let me do what I wanted I would have made your lives better. I, and my fellow Democrats know what is best for you. I would have taken care of you, and would have changed things so that everyone would have been equally unhappy, rather than a few of you getting more than everyone else and the unproductive segment of our society would have been elevated to the level of the rest of you productive citizens. Understand me here: I, and those I surround myself with are EDUCATED. We know better, and are smarter, than the rest of you., and you folks had damned well better learn that.

Quote of the Day

Stephen Green, the VodkaPundit, was drunkblogging the SOTU address last night.  For my money, here's his best line:
6:36PM Pelosi jumped up so fast on that “cap and trade” line that she didn’t even leave a wet spot on her chair.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dungeons and Dragons post from The Volokh Conspiracy

Being one of the few D&D nerd chicks in the world, this post at The Volokh Conspiracy discussing the Wisconsin court decision to not allow inmates to play D&D (ht Insty) really tickled my funny bone.  Makes me wonder how many bloggers are former (or are still) D&D players??  I haven't picked up my twelve sided dice for a saving throw in quite a while but I still have my books and old character sheets.  Truthfully, it seems to me that the virtual world of the Internet is quite similar in feel to the worlds of D&D.

SOTU (First Draft)--Telling it like it is rather than what's actually going to be said.

Mr. B is on a roll with this one!  My favorite part:
It appears that my predecessors' policies are not actually that bad. We will, however, do our best to send a muddled and unclear message to the world in the future in order to keep them off balance and prevent any significant changes or forward strides in stability among countries that might make this country safer. I will continue to support the ineffective and corrupt United Nations organization because they support me.

Pre-activism raises its ugly head at the Superbowl

Apparently there is a group, Focus on the Family, who is paying to run an ad that celebrates life.  From what I've heard, because no one has actually SEEN the ad, that it is pro-life, pro-family, etc.  Now, as a full-disclosure, I am pro-choice.  I personally would never get an abortion and I've always tried to plan my life so that I never would have to (because I'm also pro-personal responsibility) but if someone wants to pay for it, then there should be nothing to come between that person and their doctor.  I'm also of the mind that if insurance can pay for Viagra then insurance should also pay for birth control (not necessarily retro-active birth control), but I digress.

All that said, it is interesting that the pro-choice folks, women's groups, etc. are coming out against an ad they haven't seen.  They are screaming about equal time, hate speech, and are wailing that the ad should be pulled.  Jemhu Greene, director of the Women's Media Center is leading the way to have the ad pulled before the Superbowl.  My thought is if these folks feel so strongly about the ad, pay up and put on your own ad.  But of course the typical liberal thought is that if I don't like it, no one should hear it, rather than just not listening to it.  If their agenda is so fragile that a 30 second Superbowl commercial can harm it, then they should rethink their agenda.

Do I agree with everything that Focus on the Family espouses?  Defiinitely not.  Do I firmly believe in their right to Free Speech?  Definitely yes.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Academia and Politics

Aside from the other ills about academia that I have catalogued ad nausiem in previous posts is the surprising myopia that many academics seem to have.  It's almost like having to do all of the (what seems to me to be pointless) work, politics (kowtowing to senior faculty, especially those on your dissertation committee), addtional coursework and research kind of leeches any sense of the wider world from them.  Plus, once they reach their goal of a PhD, from what I've noticed firsthand, they develop a sense of entitlement and arrogance that I think comes from the long-term intiatory process that they've undergone.  In many ways they become as insular as monks in a monastery at the top of a mountain.

So, what we have now in our government's leadership are a bunch of folks with Ivy League educations, many with higher degrees that have a myopic, entitled, and arrogant/'I am educated therefore I know best' view of the world.  They've gone from one insular social situation into another, that of Washington DC.  Many of them have not held any jobs outside of either academia or government--they've never been exposed to the issues that they are trying to change--How on earth can any good come of this??   The people that DO have the real-world experience lack the inherent nastiness and knowledge of in-fighting that the others have from their extended time in academe, so they get pushed aside or shouted down much like the former global warming 'skeptics/dissenters'.

I do think that one way to combat this would be to ensure that more time is spent by our elected officials at home, rather than in Washington.  I've said before that they get assimilated into that culture and since they then do not have any direct contact with their constiuencies (like going to the grocery store, restaurants, etc. and listening to what regular folks are discussing) they lose touch.  It's amazing how Ben Nelson's attitude changed when he was booed out of his local pizza joint--it really was, I think, his first inkling that what he did was widely perceived as wrong by the folks at home--I'm sure that in Washington he was assured that he was doing his best for his constituency etc.  Only by having direct contact with the folks at home, the folks that elected them, will the insular ideological walls be broken.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Nice to know I'm ahead of the curve on SOMETHING

Check out this article at regarding the fact that Even Bayh is lagging on a hypothetical matchup with Mike Pence (who hasn't decided to run yet, but may after seeing the results of this poll).  I said last week that Bayh's finger pointing at the lefter-leaning folks in his party isn't going to do him any good because he just behaved like a good little lapdog and supported his party's policy and leadership rather than listening to his constituents.  I don't think that disowning his party's leadership will do him a damn bit of good come election time.

Circle-jerks, academe-style

It turns out that the faulty data about the Himalyan glaciers disappearing in 2035, was admitted to have been included in the UN report for clearly political, self-interested reasons *gasp*.  In a fit of irony, the Intergovernmental Panal on Climate Change (IPCC) Chair, Rajendra Pachauri, called dissenting reports about the glaciers 'voodoo science'.  What makes all of this a little more interesting to me, is not that it got so far, but the fact that the only way it was discovered was because Graham Cogley from Trent University, followed the paper trail back to the original reports and found out that they were crap.

The thing is, this type of process is endemic to academia and apparently to science as well.  Someone writes something, it's picked up by someone else who rarely, if ever checks out the original's primary sources since it matches with their particular agenda, data is hand-picked, and scientific method goes out the window.  And then it passes to the next person for the next iteration and it grows from there into a huge congratulatory, self-sustaining circle-jerk until the chink in the armor is found and then it becomes a huge, finger-pointing, every-scientist-for-themselves clusterfuck that we know today as Climate-gate.

But I do have to wonder what other 'big causes' :  AIDS research, H1N1, even things like nutrition--have been subject to the above processes.  If no one goes back to the beginning, can we ever be sure?  It reminds me of a very old joke:
A monk moves to a monastery that copies the Bible by hand.  He can't read a certain word and goes to the Abbot, who also cannot make out the word.  The abbot says... "I will go down in the catacombs and will compare this with the absolute original document."  Days pass and the abbott does not return.  The concerned monks go into the catacombs and they hear the sound of the abbott sobbing as if his heart would break.  They follow the sound to the back room and find the abbott, tears running down his face, with the original document illuminated by a single candle.  "Father, father, what is wrong??" ask the monks.  Gathering himself, the abbott says...  "Dear God, the word is CELEBRATE".
 Old joke, but a good lesson.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

A Pack, not a Herd

Apparently the pack, not herd mentality is taking root for American airline passengers (ht, Insty). It's unfortunate that it has to, but I really think that this is symbolic of a higher awakening of the American people.
Before 9/11 we were being 'trained' for lack of a better word to be victims--sit still and let the hijackers take you where they want to go, women--lie still and let the rapist take what he wants, men--just hand over your wallets to the mugger. Guns in the hands of regular folks are bad and dangerous.

This message was harped on and the indoctrination continued. Government good, private enterprise bad. Let someone else take care of things--abrogation of personal responsibility and encouraging passive behavior--the government will pay for all of those babies AND they'll pay more if you're not married to the father(s). Everyone is a victim, except if you're a white middle class male, then you're the enemy and the cause of all sorrows (because there has to be a common enemy and it's best if it's one that you can't do without).

After 9/11 and really in the last year, the American people are starting to realize that they can't abrogate their responsibilities for their own well-being.  That they have to defend themselves.  That the government cannot protect them and in fact is making things worse for them.  We are starting to shake off the rose-colored wool that the MSM, in its role as the governmental lapdog and propaganda purveyors, had tried to pull over our eyes.

eta:  J.R. Dunn over at American Thinker is planning ahead for a time when terrorists start hitting shopping malls.  Read the whole thing, but especially the last four paragraphs.  He also talks about individuals taking responsibility for their own safety instead of just waiting for the police.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Well, someone did the work for me on this ...... Star Wars Cantina scene

For your viewing pleasure....

And just because... The entire original Mos Eisley scene, Jedi mind tricks and all....

Friday, January 22, 2010

Scenes from my other favorite movie: The Fifth Element...

The first one is, of course, The Diva Dance.  Love the juxtaposition of the blue Diva and the very orange Leeloo doing what they do best. Water and fire as my friend's son put it one time.

And the next one is Chris Tucker as Ruby Rhod... Saw an interview with him and he said that he just decided to go completely over the top with this character, and, IMO, he succeeded.

Quote of the day regading Pat Robertson's assertion about Haiti

Via Drudge, New York Times Op-Ed commentator Nicholas Kristof is talking about Haiti and the fact that a lot  of folks feel that the amount of aid going there is eventually going to be money wasted once the country is back to pre-earthquake conditions.  He does make some good points about starting factories there instead of in Asia and such but his best comment is this:
"Pat Robertson, the religious broadcaster, went furthest by suggesting that Haiti’s earthquake flowed from a pact with the devil more than two centuries ago. While it’s not for a journalist to nitpick a minister’s theological credentials, that implication of belated seismic revenge on Haitian children seems defamatory of God. "
I think that the above is the best, most polite, but yet snarkiest commentary on Robertson's idiocy.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Favorite Movie stuff

I've got three movies that I would consider to be my favorites EVAH:  The Princess Bride, The Fifth Element, and Star Wars (the original untouched Han Solo shot first version).  I'm dating myself, but I saw The Princess Bride when it came out in the theaters originally--I was in high school.  So the Princess Bride was on tonight and so I thought I'd share my two favorite scenes, courtesy of YouTube:

And of course:

Quote of the Day.... LabRat at Atomic Nerds

LabRat over at Atomic Nerds is blogging about the MSM trying to call a guy riding around in a pickup truck a racist 'coding'.  Like no persons of color have pickup trucks or anything.  In her post she says:
"Barack Obama is impossible to picture in a pickup truck, but that’s not about the color of his skin, it’s about his class. His educational credentials are Ivy League, and so are his wife’s. They may be darker than past Presidents, but they came from the exact same culture as the entrenched governing class."
But, as Insty says, read the whole thing.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Go Scott Go! Brown Wins!

Another Cinderella story in honor of Scott Brown and his victory in Massachusetts!

In your face Coakley!

Also, a shoutout to Evan Bayh who is already starting the blame game--you've been Reid and Pelosi's lapdog all along and pointing fingers now will not keep you in that Senate seat in the fall.  You're blaming the far left of your party but the problem is that you chose to go along with your party rather than either act as a check on its idiotic policies or represent the interests and will of your constituents.  You are part of the problem but the solution--your ouster--will come soon.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

And so it begins, amnesty for illegals

I was listening to NPR this morning and they had a very short spot about Obama's executive order granting amnesty for the 100,000 illegal Haitians in the US to last a period of 18 months. Amazing how a Chicago politician never changes strategy--taking advantage of a crisis to force through their agenda. Just the first step onto the slippery slope folks....

I have a much better idea--let's send the illegals to France since France is screaming that we're using the excuse of the earthquake to take over Haiti (like anyone would want it). Sure didn't take long for them to start calling us names, did it??

Monday, January 18, 2010

Ray Stevens video "We the People"

Ray Stevens pretty much says it like it is in this video. (ht Bookworm).  Love the last line.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sometimes my mind works in odd ways....

My mom called today and asked me if I'd enjoy having  a Kindle or a Nook or some other e-book reader.  I told her that, despite all other technologies that I use, I still enjoy books--the feel, the smell--being able to drop one in the tub and not have to spend $200 on a new reader.  Additionally, after the incident with Amazon and 1984, where they just disappeared it off everyone's reader without a by-your-leave, I think I'll keep my books.  They can try to come and snatch them out of my hands.

I told her that I'd probably end up like the old woman at the beginning of Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.  If they came to burn my books, I'd stand in them and light the match.

"Play the man, Master Ridley; we shall this day light such a candle, by God's grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out."

(Hugh Latimer to Nicholas Ridley as they were about to be burned at the stake as heretics during the reign of Queen Mary I of England.)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Interesting Point

Old Grouch, in a discussion on Tam's blog, points out that part of the problem in Haiti is that they've been taught nothing but dependence pretty much from the beginning.  He also aptly points out that the subsequent dictators had a habit of weeding out anyone who might be competition.  Much the same as what is starting to go on here--the government wants the populace dependent upon it for everything.  But not everyone has been weeded out here so there may be hope.

And the UN can kiss my American butt....

Reading this report, the UN is calling for (primarily) US money and material support for Haiti.  Ya'know, it's funny and not in a ha-ha kind of way that the first place the world looks is to the US for help, support, aid.  Hell's bells, we were propping up the economies of most of the world with our aid programs and other support.  If we cut those out, then maybe we could get our own economy back on track, to the ruination of the rest of the world.  Not only do the Democrats look at American taxpayers as an endless source of income, but the rest of the world looks at the United States as an endless source of funds for their projects.  If we're as evil, mean, nasty, rotten as the world and Obama seem to think we are, then why are we the first place they look for help??  Perhaps because we always try to do the right thing, without being forced to.  But biting the hand that feeds you as the world has done to MY country, is starting to lose, at least for me, any wish to dig them out of the problems that get themselves into.  Simple thank yous, instead of demands would work better and would make it easier for me to want to help.

Blogging will be light the next few days....

I'm not at the Indy Show but I've got a bunch of stuff to hopefully get organized.

I've been thinking about Haiti and the tens of billions of dollars flowing in there that will never be seen again and, in the long run, I don't think will change anything--just like Katrina in New Orleans.   The parts of New Orleans that were productive, are again.  The other parts aren't.  The crime rate has risen in cities that took Katrina refugees 'temporarily'.  Now I know by saying these things that I sound like a cruel and heartless bitch.

I have friends who have relatives there and I don't want to see anyone hurt or out of a home.  But the thing is, most of the reporters and such that are going in there and are reporting such devastating conditions didn't see it PRIOR to the earthquake.  The main road from the border with the Dominican Republic, which all of them were reporting to be in some places a dirt track, was like that BEFORE the quake--the earthquake didn't shake the pavement off. 

Maybe all of the aid dollars will help them to create what they should have had already but they got off track.  But change to maintain it has to come from within, and that's the part I'm not sure about.

Friday, January 15, 2010

I can't (can) believe that the city of Chicago is actually doing it....

Back a few months ago--as a matter of fact, right before Chicago seriously tanked on their bid for the Olympics, there was a video showing a student being beaten to death by his schoolmates.  Apparently what it came down to was that they had closed one high school to make it a specialty school and so kids from rival neighborhoods/gangs were having to attend a single high school.  To get to this school they had to walk through 'hostile territory'. 

So Jesse Jackson came in and said that SOMEONE should PAY the parents to accompany/protect their kids to and from school.  Because, you know, a parent can't be a parent unless you pay them (of course they were paid by the state to have the kids--more kids= more money, they got money to support the kids, so maybe this isn't that much of a stretch).

So now apparently the city of Chicago is getting $60 million in federal dollars (our dollars, dear reader) to pay  'public citizen patrols' (who will also be acting as truancy officers, oh the irony).  (ht, Second City Cop)  What do you want to bet that the 'public citizen patrols' will be made up of all of those out-of-work parents who couldn't be bothered to get off their duffs to make sure that their children got to school without being beaten or shot at?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Has the Left infiltrated the Educational system so thoroughly that they've forgotten how to spell?

Via Insty, Ann Althouse takes a dig at Mark Moulitsas of the Daily Kos for not knowing the difference between vice and vise.  For example, politicians are always getting caught in a vice, but it's not because they've gotten their heads stuck in a vise.  Combining that with Martha Coakley's campaigners misspelling her home state of Massachusetts (instead using Massachusettes) and it makes me wonder if the Leftist educational agenda isn't coming home to roost--but just a bit closer than they'd hoped.

She Exists! She IS ALIVE...!!! But who cares?!?

Of course I'm talking about Hillary Clinton who has been strangely absent from the public eye for the past two months or so (no I really didn't miss her either).  Either the Obamanaughts sent her off for reprogramming or it was like the movie 'Dave' where they sent the Vice President on a tour of furthest reaches of Africa so he wouldn't realize that the President was actually Dave.  Only they sent her to the furthest reaches of Asia and Australia to keep her out of the picture for some other reason.  But now she's hopping from Hawaii back to DC where she will coordinate relief efforts for Haiti (I would think it would be easier to coordinate from somewhere CLOSER to Haiti than DC, but who am I to speak the obvious?).

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tee-shirt of the day...

Saw a guy wearing a tee-shirt that said the following: " Straight White Republican Male:  How else can I piss you off today?"

I thought adding 'gunowner' would round it out nicely and would torque off the offenssensitivity crowd (scroll down to find the cartoon).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Go Scott Go!

I've been following the special election in Massachusetts since I lived there for five years.  Scott Brown, the Republican candidate for the Senate seat that has been held by an interim senator placeholder since Kennedy's death is, by all accounts, kicking some major butt.  He raised over $1 million in a single day (yesterday) and 75% of people in a Boston Globe poll said that he won the debate with Coakley last night.  Coakley unveiled a negative ad right after the debate and this seems, from a quick scan of comments on the Globe article, to be losing her votes.  What these people don't realize is that the same-old, same-old won't fly.  The sleeping giant has awakened; the frog realized the water was hot and has jumped out of the pot.  I could probably come up with about 25 more pithy sayings, but will refrain.  Just as a side note, I was able to spell Massachusetts correctly the first time and, as a last resort, know how to use a spell-check, unlike the folks who created Coakley's slam ad.

Again the joys of academia, the Realm of Censorship

Via Insty, there is an article in Reason entitled P.C. Never Died that talks about the censorship and indoctrination programs in place at our institutions (a more than apt term) of higher learning.  An except from this excellent snapshot by look at how college campuses squelch free speech and, more importantly, free thought:
"...With so many examples of censorship and administrative bullying, a generation of students is getting four years of dangerously wrongheaded lessons about both their own rights and the importance of respecting the rights of others. Diligently applying the lessons they are taught, students are increasingly turning on each other, and trying to silence fellow students who offend them. With schools bulldozing free speech in brazen defiance of legal precedent, and with authoritarian restrictions surrounding students from kindergarten through graduate school, how can we expect them to learn anything else?"
 Connect the dots between the above and how the MSM is calling the Tea Party movement a 'backlash against the educated class'.  Read this article that puts that issue in better perspective than I can.  The way I see it, the two issues I've mentioned are connected.  There is not a backlash against the 'educated class' whatever that it.  There is a backlash against a system that has created a bunch of self-serving, me-centric, bunch of special snowflake politicians who have been told that they know best and that their opinion is the only right one and that they have the right to put their ideas onto everyone else.

Ah, the joys of academia--the 'Me'-centric realm of entitlement

I was talking with Mr. B on the way to work today and started off on a bit of a rant.  Over in the People's Republic of Illinois at the University of Illinois, home of the politically-connected admissions system, they are having to furlough all faculty and staff a day a month for the next four months.  It's essentially a cut in pay by four days.  Staff get an unpaid vacation day, faculty will probably have to take their days when they don't have to teach class.  So, we discussed kind of the other implications of this:  the fact that most faculty will probably be able to cut a day a month from their schedules and not have any loss of class time because they are not in the classroom five days a week.  I work in academia and I can tell you that probably they should just shut the campus down on Fridays because I'm betting that the only folks who were there anyway were administrative staff.

This connected to my workplace where we are having to cut out travel and other budgetary items, such as paying faculty an incentive for publishing (I always figured that was part of the job and not something for which you should be paid extra).  Many faculty are pitching a five-year old type hissy fit because they aren't going to be able to have a paid trip to Singapore, or Hawaii, or Greece. (To be fair, some folks have been saving their extra money and not using it immediately and now it's gone so they are kind of getting screwed compared to folks who used all of their funds immediately but that's a roll of the dice, IMO.)

They are talking lawsuits and contract violations without taking into account that these moves save jobs--that these cuts enable the administration to retain people that might otherwise be fired due to lack of funding.  It's like the unions--they would rather see people lose jobs then lose ANYTHING, even just a little bit.  It was astutely pointed out to me that the same type of socialism that runs academia, runs the unions.  The entitlement mentality of some of these folks truly boggles my mind but I'm not sure WHY I get boggled anymore....

Monday, January 11, 2010

This got me thinking about the timing of the Pantybomber's attack

I've been mulling this around for quite a few days, but this post at American Thinker helped me to crystalize it.  As Joel J. Sprayregen, points out, there were several attacks on Christians around Christmas by Muslims.  It seems that others' holy days are specifically used as a type of attack calendar.  The thing that gets me is that even I know this--I knew it BEFORE the pantybomber tried to blow up a plane full of people.  So, riddle me this, why would the folks who are supposed to be in charge of national security, from the President on down, take their vacation time at Christmas?  Obama remained in Hawaii and didn't bother even commenting on the situation for several days.  Michael Leiter, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, stayed on the ski slopes and didn't bother dragging his sorry ass back into the office for almost a week. 

When I was in a supervisory position, I was expected to 1) Be on call, no matter what; 2) Be prepared to come into the office, no matter the time; 3) Be aware of the flow of the job and not take vacations during busy times.  And that was a piddly job compared to what these folks are supposed to be doing.  If I was expected to be available, why are these guys?

Healthcare, education, and taxes

I was listening to Don Wade and Roma this morning on WLS and they had former Governor (now talk show host and celebrity apprentice) Rod Blagojevich on.  Most of what he said was self-serving blather since he's trying to kill any jury pool for his trial but something that he said was actually kind of interesting.  They were talking about the state of the Illinois budget (which is going the way of California) and Blago said the following (I'm paraphrasing):  I increased spending for education and healthcare and I didn't raise taxes and that's why I had to cut $2 billion of other things out of the budget in order to have a balanced state budget.

Now I lived in Tennessee for several years while TENNCare pulled every extra cent plus out of the state budget.  I worked in higher education (stereotypically not a priority for Tennesseans) and didn't see but a 1/2% raise in five yearsn (and that was only for half a fiscal year).  My roundabout point is that publically taking over healthcare, even on the state level, is enough to bankrupt a state and make it impossible for them to have any other programs or priorities.  Just ask the folks in Massachussetts now.  Healthcare became a public concern in Illinois, goodbye the rest of the budget.  Now I'm not saying that Illinois doesn't have a plethora of other problems that are adding to their budget woes, but I don't think that my linkage is spurious either.  Imagine the effect on a national level....

Saturday, January 9, 2010

I had forgotten what GREAT dancers they were....

Just watched "White Nights" with Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gregory Hines for the umpteenth time.  Besides being a good reminder about the bad old days of Soviet Russia, watching Hines and Baryshnikov dance in their prime was mesmerizing.  Two styles that were so different--tap and ballet--but melded so well when performed by two artists at their peak.  The acting, meh, but gawddayam, those guys could move.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Word of the day... conservative...

I still am listening to election ads from the People's Republic of Illinois in the morning on my way to work (BTW, never got to work today due to weather but had a LOVELY two hour sojourn on our Indiana state highways).  But it did give me a lot more time to listen to the radio.  Heard an ad from Mark Kirk for Senate.  Now Kirk is kind of interesting to me.  He voted for Cap and Trade because he apparently drank the Algore Climate Kool-Aid and I haven't heard if he now regrets that or if he's rethought his opinion--I'll find out.  The interesting part of his ad is that he says that he's a 'fiscal conservative'.  Again, with conservative.  I think that folks are realizing, especially Republicans, that RINOs will not fly--that's why they are having to put themselves out there specifically labeling themselves as Conservative--just being Republican doesn't mean that you are also conservative anymore, just as there are the 'Blue Dog' conservative Democrats.  The lines are blurring and the party doesn't have a meaning anymore as it used to relate to ideology.  It's truly an interesting paradigm shift and happened just over the course of two decades.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Okay, this youtube video is REALLY good

Via Insty, SISU, in their article about Democrats leaving a sinking ship (Dodd and Co.), has a link to this video-- America Rising.  Well done!  The almost subliminal graphics work very well.  Check it out!

Republicans and misconceptions

Today Mr. B called me from the road to clue me about Michael Steele speaking on WLS this morning (sorry I kept you on the phone so long darlin'-you got me on a roll and I get clueless when I'm on a roll).  In any case, Mr. Steele seems to suffer under the misconception that the Tea Partiers and 9/12'ers are aligned with the Republican party, which is not the case at all. 
Any party that would throw their support behind someone like DeeDee Scozzafava. who was so far to the left ideologically that she couldn't even see the middle and ignore a viable candidate like Scott Brown, is not the Republican party that I can be a part of.  Any party that would put a RINO like John McCain up as a viable candidate is not a party that I can be a part of.  Any party that would start this Keynesian economics debacle is not a party I can be a part of.  I can support an organization that adheres to conservative values:  small government, lower taxes, free enterprise, state sovereignty, citizens' rights.  Right now the Republicans are not that organization but I have a feeling that it might change.

I'm finding it to be quite interesting, listening to the Primary Posturing over in Illinois--the Republicans are all trying to show conservative values.  One guy, Dan Proft, is actually saying in his advertisement that he is a "Conservative Republican" running for Governor (and he's got his tax returns online which is demonstrating some transparency too). Adam Andrzejewski is running as a financial reformer/small government candidate but doesn't come straight out and say that he's a conservative but he's IMPLYING that he's a conservative.

I'm kind of curious to see what happens in Massachusetts.  I think that Republican Scott Brown actually has a chance for Senator due to the hubris of Martha "I'm on vacation." Coakley , the Democratic candidate (not hurting Brown any is the fact that the Globe seems to have a hate-on for Coakley). Combine that with the fact that Senator Chris Dodd is (thankfully) taking a powder, aka retirement, before he's publically humiliated as well as Senator Byron Dorgan.  Democratic Governor Bill Ritter in Colorado also announced that he's bowing out.  The fact that Parker Griffith, the freshman Congressman from Alabama was so disgusted with his party that he switched to Republican I think is telling.

When I was a poli-sci major back in the mid-eighties, it was pretty simple.  The Republicans were:  great with foreign policy, small government, low taxes-especially for business, sucked on domestic issues.  The Democrats were:  great on domestic issues, big government, higher taxes (to fund the domestic issues), and sucked on foreign policy.  Somehow in the intervening decades, the Republicans became DNC light, which is not something that I can appreciate.

It should be an interesting election year.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Since right now I've got nothing....

Here's a sign I have next to my desk--Author Unknown to me but if anyone knows, I'll happily attribute it properly.

Life is too short to wake up with regrets.
So love the people who treat you right.
Love the ones who don't, just because you can.
Believe everything happens for a reason.
If you get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it changes your life, let it.
Kiss slowly.
Forgive quickly.
God never said that life would be easy.  He just promised it would be worth it.

On this rollercoaster of existence, sometimes all we can do is hold on and enjoy the ride.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Wise words from a wise man...

I don't have kids, but JayG at MArooned does.  Please check out his post about his run-in with a do-gooder type.  The article ends with an interesting thought:

"...had she really believed I was some uncaring brute who would willingly torture a six year old girl for fun, I doubt she'd have opened her mouth. Much like the do-gooders who called the cops on me for spanking my son - if they really thought I was beating him (they admitted to the cops that they saw me spank him on the behind with an open hand), calling the police would only escalate the situation. In other words, they're not really trying to help the children; rather, they're exerting power over someone else.

No wonder the Democrats are in power now."

Okay, this statement is even dumber....

CNN is reporting on a Tea Party economic protest/national strike on January 20, 2010.  At the end of the article is this sentence:

CNN reached out to a number of national Tea Party organizations. While some were aware of the planned strike and some not informed, none said they were going to actively take part in the event.
 The only time CNN reached out to the Tea Partiers was to try to slap them.  Of course no one is going to say anything to them lest their words get twisted.

Okay, this was just a dumb comment...

And I'm not talking about Napolitano's "the system worked" comment either.  Apparently Brit Hume took at chance at some sideways proselytization regarding Tiger Woods by saying that if Tiger would turn Christian, rather than Buddhist, then he can fully recover from the ongoing scandal.   Unfortunately the subject at hand was the biggest sports story, not the biggest sex scandal story involving an athlete.

Now I'm sorry, and I've got a lot of friends who are Christian, but Brit's just being disingenuous.  Some of the biggest sex scandals in the last decade involved folks purporting to be Christian.  I appreciate Brit's faith but sometimes situational correctness is not a bad thing, otherwise you just look like a nutter.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year Everyone!

With so many things going on in the world that affect us, both personally and professionally, take a moment to count your blessings and bring those into the New Year with you.  Acknowledge the past and learn from it.  Leave the bad stuff behind and start as fresh as Baby New Year with real hope that comes from within, not imposed from without (sorry, had to get a LITTLE political). 

For myself, I was given a chance  to love, live, and learn with a man who never ceases to take my breath away and who also makes me think and grow as a person.  I have a family and friends who love me and have found more of those of like-mind through the magic of the Internet than I thought existed.

Cheers y'all!