Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Thoughts and prayers for Scout 26 over at Cancer Ward

He found out that his docs think there might be an issue but he's having to wait for his test results to come in at the end of the week.  Himself's and my thoughts, prayers, and good wishes are with him.

Say 'Buh-bye' to the Pyramids and other Egyptian relics

It seems that the Muslim Brotherhood is starting to flex its muscles in Egypt. They are wanting to put Islamic type dress and mixing and mingling of the sexes codes onto beaches. Whatever, it's their country and I will never need to go there to get some beach-time.  However:
Abd Al-Munim A-Shahhat, a spokesman for the Salafi group Dawa, has said that Egypt's world-renowned pharaonic archeology – its pyramids, Sphinx and other monuments covered with un-Islamic imagery – should also be hidden from the public eye.

"The pharaonic culture is a rotten culture," A-Shahhat told the London-based Arab daily A-Sharq Al-Awsat on Wednesday, saying the faces of ancient statues "should be covered with wax, since they are religiously forbidden." He likened the Egyptian relics to the idols which circled the walls of Mecca in pre-Islamic times.
Lest we forget what Muslims do to un-Islamic imagery:


Recall at the time that UNESCO tried to say that this destructive abomination was an anomaly:
Koichiro Matsuura, chief of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), said he had convened an emergency meeting of members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference to try to stop the destruction.
"They are destroying statues that the entire world considers to be masterpieces," Matsuura said.
"And this is being done in the name of an interpretation of the Muslim faith that is not recognized anywhere else in the world."
It's only one small step from "hidden from the public eye" to destruction.  And they call us unclean and immoral.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Lessons learned at the Blogmeet....

 I learned:

That of course the Mighty Og and Himself/Mr. B both speak Taze (of which there are 147 dialects, including Dog/Electric Fence Collar). And I now know that shock collars will leave burn marks on human skin and that it takes two weeks for a sphincter to completely unclench after being tazed (please don't ask for more detail since my stomach and lungs are still recovering from laughing so hard). Also, !!POIJGBOIJhbuoGIHyGpGViug!! can translate to "Don't tase me bro." or to “Golly, this hurts!”, if you add another !!NNggg!!.

That the Snark Is Strong in Partner, especially when he should just be looking out the window instead of noticing what other vehicles are doing.

That when the term "Tactical Slumber Party" is mentioned, then the parties in question start wondering where their camo jammies are.

That it takes 24 feet of paracord to make a parcord bracelet so the one that Brigid made for me can also serve as an escape rope if I unravel it.

That I love my range-flower bracelet that Himself bought for me.  In .380, no less since, as he said, that's what I shoot the most.

That Tactical Purses can also be fashionable, thanks to the folks at Stoner Holsters.

That Tam and Roberta put on one heck of a blogmeet (congrats to Tam on her 6th Blogoversary) and I'm glad this time I got to sit close enough to them to chat this time.

That Rich truly didn't realize how many people read his blog and the smile on his face when he introduced himself and everyone went 'Ooooooooo!' lit up the room.

That Longhorn Jeff is not from Texas and that those wheelbarrows full of money are very cool.

I confirmed that Old NFO is as wickedly interesting in person as he is on his blog.

The biggest lesson I learned is that there is never enough time to sit and talk to everyone.  I totally didn't have enough time to say more than 'hi' to Old Grouch; Cancer Ward; Shermlock and the lovely Mrs. Shomes; Peter the Bayou Renaissance Man and the livin' life to the fullest Miss D (well, we were going to be here, so we might as well go there and then since it was only a few hours, we figured we should go someplace else); Don at Push the Pull Door; Jack; and The Mad Saint Jack and last, but not least Kerry-the-Non-Blogger.

Hopefully that got everyone, if not, pop me an email because I have to do some blog updates soon!




Saturday, August 27, 2011

Stand by Me

A movie that has one of the best interaction ever...  "you gonna shoot us all?"  "No Ace, just you."




ETA:
Because I totally concur with the comments from Uncle Jay...



ETA: Geez, that Garth is like a fungus, oozing from one blog post to another but he should be gone now. The Fifth Element scene should be there.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Seriously, did I hold up a cue card??

A new report says that students majoring in Education in college consistently receive higher grades than students enrolled in other majors. The reason (no big surprise here): lower grading standards. Well duh! Ever since I saw a College of Education from the inside, I've been trumpeting this bit of news to the stars. Of course I didn't do a study....

Michael Walsh in the New York Post takes up the microphone and echoes what I've been saying:
This madness has to end. We must return to the days before education majors got a stranglehold on the schools, before the vicious cycle of bogus achievement leading to invincible ignorance. And it starts by hiring teachers who can teach subjects, not theories.
Look, any time a tenured professor will equate a poem with a five-page research paper,  there is a problem.  And like I've said before and as Walsh is saying in his article, we need to go back to when teachers actually knew their subjects.  When they had the knowledge and background to be able to tell when a textbook has incorrect data or information.  When teachers were majors in a subject like math or English or history first and learned the ropes of teaching later.  When a student mastering the information was more important than mastering a test.

Hopefully there can be some real change when more information like this is made public!


Thursday, August 25, 2011

When it comes to Shariah law, there are two ways to go

There is the right way, which is to make the law of the land the law for all, rather than allow a colonization of your culture.

There is the wrong way, which allows a foreign culture to institute their own laws from their own lands.  Note that in the article, the express goal of creating 'Shariah Zones' in Britain is to 'put the seeds down for an Islamic emirate in the long term.'



What happened to the Britain-that-was to allow this type of abomination?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I don't know why some things become linked in my head

As an example of brain linkages (and not in a necessarily good way), I was listening to the radio tonight and 'Foxy Lady' by Hendrix came on.  What do I flash to immediately??  See below...  *sigh*  I'm not right.....

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Classic Executive Blunders on the Vineyard and in the Heartland

So I'm listening to Don and Roma this morning and they are discussing the fact that Obama has 'reached out' to Warren Buffet and to the head of Ford Motor Company to glean ideas for his economic and jobs framework.  Which is going to be useless and garner him exactly ZERO new ideas.  Why?  Because they are all already on the same page, ideologically speaking.  Buffet, the man who socked away most of his funds into foundations and other dodges in order to not pay taxes, has been trumpeting at the world that they need to pay more taxes and that he would be willing to pay more taxes (oddly enough we haven't seen any canceled checks that he's written to the federal government though).  And, per this article, Obama only asked the Ford guy about supply chain issues and how to extend exports.  Guessing he didn't ask how to keep manufacturing in this country because he wouldn't want THAT answer.

Obama is making a couple of classic blunders:  1.) He doesn't know what questions to ask (and doesn't know that he doesn't know what questions to ask).  This is part of his narcissism, which won't let him admit that he doesn't know something; 2.) He's asking yes men, not someone who is on a different ideological page; 3.)  he's clearly stuck on a particular ideology and won't budge from that, which most likely means that he's going to want to do more 'stimulus' which has been proven in the past two years to not work. It's the same as him refusing to budge from tax increases as part of the debt ceiling talks--flexibility of thought is necessary in an executive and he doesn't show that requisite skill.  This means that anything he comes up with is doomed to fail.

Obama showed his lack of executive skills and knowledge last week in Illinois as well.  In that well-publicized interaction with a farmer (well-publicized on the blogosphere but not in the MSM) who asked that he cut back the rules and regulations that are preventing farmers from doing their jobs, Obama's answer was 'Call the USDA.'.  This showed clear failure on several fronts.

Firstly, the rules and regs that the man mentioned were EPA rules:  "dust pollution, noise pollution, water run off."  But Obama did not know that and did not seek clarification.

Secondly, he also made the assumption that anything having to do with farming must come under the aegis of the USDA showing that he does not understand the web of interactive regulations that strangle businesses, including farming, from several different fronts.  As an aside, MJ Lee, a reporter for Politico, tried to follow the 'advice' given by Obama and got absolutely nowhere (read his odyssey).  Talk about an exercise in futility....

Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, he couldn't just admit he didn't know the answer.  An effective executive, one who is really wanting to help, would have said something along the lines of "I don't know about those things specifically.  Talk to that guy over there and give him some details and your phone number and I'll check it out and will call you back personally in a couple of days."  Instead, he just blew the guy off, figuratively speaking.

Obama is a clear example of why someone with no executive experience should NOT be in the Oval Office.  While executive experience does not necessarily give one all of the experience needed, it provides a framework for success, if one was a successful executive.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Og called it..

 Ahead of the curve as always, is the Mighty and Indomitable Og.  All the cool sci-fi nerds are doing it so I figured I would too.  Read over half the books on the list and am pretty sure I have some of the rest but never got around to reading them.

1. The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, by J.R.R. Tolkien
2. The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, by Douglas Adams
3. Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card
4. The Dune Chronicles, by Frank Herbert
5. A Song Of Ice And Fire Series, by George R. R. Martin
6. 1984, by George Orwell
7. Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury
8. The Foundation Trilogy, by Isaac Asimov
9. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
10. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman
11. The Princess Bride, by William Goldman
12. The Wheel Of Time Series, by Robert Jordan

13. Animal Farm, by George Orwell
14. Neuromancer, by William Gibson
15. Watchmen, by Alan Moore
16. I, Robot, by Isaac Asimov
17. Stranger In A Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein
18. The Kingkiller Chronicles, by Patrick Rothfuss
19. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
20. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
21. Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick
22. The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood
23. The Dark Tower Series, by Stephen King
24. 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke
25. The Stand, by Stephen King
26. Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson
27. The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury
28. Cat's Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut
29. The Sandman Series, by Neil Gaiman
30. A Clockwork Orange, by Anthony Burgess
31. Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein
32. Watership Down, by Richard Adams
33. Dragonflight, by Anne McCaffrey
34. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, by Robert Heinlein
35. A Canticle For Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller
36. The Time Machine, by H.G. Wells
37. 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, by Jules Verne
38. Flowers For Algernon, by Daniel Keys
39. The War Of The Worlds, by H.G. Wells
40. The Chronicles Of Amber, by Roger Zelazny
41. The Belgariad, by David Eddings
42. The Mists Of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley
43. The Mistborn Series, by Brandon Sanderson

44. Ringworld, by Larry Niven
45. The Left Hand Of Darkness, by Ursula K. LeGuin
46. The Silmarillion, by J.R.R. Tolkien
47. The Once And Future King, by T.H. White
48. Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman
49. Childhood's End, by Arthur C. Clarke
50. Contact, by Carl Sagan
51. The Hyperion Cantos, by Dan Simmons
52. Stardust, by Neil Gaiman
53. Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson
54. World War Z, by Max Brooks
55. The Last Unicorn, by Peter S. Beagle
56. The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman
57. Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett
58. The Chronicles Of Thomas Covenant, The Unbeliever, by Stephen R. Donaldson
59. The Vorkosigan Saga, by Lois McMaster Bujold
60. Going Postal, by Terry Pratchett
61. The Mote In God's Eye, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle
62. The Sword Of Truth, by Terry Goodkind
63. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy
64. Jonathan Strange, Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke

65. I Am Legend, by Richard Matheson
66. The Riftwar Saga, by Raymond E. Feist
67.
The Shannara Trilogy, by Terry Brooks
68. The Conan The Barbarian Series, by R.E. Howard

69. The Farseer Trilogy, by Robin Hobb
70. The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger
71. The Way Of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson
72. A Journey To The Center Of The Earth, by Jules Verne
73. The Legend Of Drizzt Series, by R.A. Salvatore
74. Old Man's War, by John Scalzi
75. The Diamond Age, by Neil Stephenson
76. Rendezvous With Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke
77. The Kushiel's Legacy Series, by Jacqueline Carey
78. The Dispossessed, by Ursula K. LeGuin
79. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury
80. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire

81. The Malazan Book Of The Fallen Series, by Steven Erikson
82. The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde
83. The Culture Series, by Iain M. Banks
84. The Crystal Cave, by Mary Stewart
85. Anathem, by Neal Stephenson
86. The Codex Alera Series, by Jim Butcher

87. The Book Of The New Sun, by Gene Wolfe
88. The Thrawn Trilogy, by Timothy Zahn
89. The Outlander Series, by Diana Gabaldan
90. The Elric Saga, by Michael Moorcock
91. The Illustrated Man, by Ray Bradbury
92. Sunshine, by Robin McKinley

93. A Fire Upon The Deep, by Vernor Vinge
94. The Caves Of Steel, by Isaac Asimov
95. The Mars Trilogy, by Kim Stanley Robinson
96. Lucifer's Hammer, by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle
97. Doomsday Book, by Connie Willis

98. Perdido Street Station, by China Mieville
99. The Xanth Series, by Piers Anthony
100. The Space Trilogy, by C.S. Lewis

Sick kitty

Our Buddha kitty is at the vet now.  We had a trip to the emergency vet yesterday but the problem was severe enough that it recurred.  He's prone to crystals in his urine and is apparently chock-full and was blocked up completely.  So we get to wait and make sure that his kidneys are okay after they catheterize him this morning.  He'll stay in a couple of days to get as thorough a flushing as possible and then special diet for the rest of his life.  I'm beating myself up since I'm in charge of food and feeding and we had them on a urinary tract formula, but food allergies and such made me switch them over to a grain-free dry to try to correct that problem.  I guess if it comes to being bald or being able to urinate, then baldness isn't so bad but it seemed so at the time.  The vet is advocating a complete switchover to canned food for the ravenous horde so I'm going to investigate our options that way.

He's a gentle kitty and the foot of the bed is going to be empty without him for a couple of days.  Wish us luck that his kidneys are okay and that we get everything corrected.

ETA:  Vet just called, looks like we dodged a bullet and no permanent kidney damage, as far as she can tell now.  Much fluids and such for a couple of days, but she thinks he'll be fine.

Phegmmy has the perfect illustration...

She has posted about a family who came home to find a burglary in process.  Two men struggled with the guy who was literally caught holding their television and one got him in a choke hold.  He died at the hospital.  Now before you say 'awww', think about it.  He was robbing them.  He broke into their home, their domicile, their castle, and was taking away their hard-won goods because he thought he could get away with it. 

When someone steals something, they are not taking just an item, they are taking the time, the hours of life, and the money that went into being able to purchase that item.

Something that comes up periodically in conversation with others is the use of force to stop a robbery or to stop someone who has broken into the house.  Usually the question posited is "Do you think it's worth a person's life to shoot them if they are taking your television?"  The answer is "Well, they obviously think so."  By allowing this behavior to pass as a 'small thing' and to try to couch it under 'well, theft is a non-violent crime' then it negates the fact that it is still a crime and one that often escalates to violence.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Because I'm tired of waiting for others to tell me what I need to know

I decided to do a little digging on Thaddeus McCotter and Gary Johnson, two of the Republicans who have stated they are running for President but haven't been included in any of the reindeer games and debates and straw polls yet.

One interesting tidbit I found is that debates are by invitation only (okay, I kind of knew this but it didn't register on my radar).  For example, CNN did not invite Johnson to the debate in New Hampshire, so he wasn't included.  The Washington Examiner and Fox News were the sponsors of the Iowa debates.   So the MSM is controlling the message again by controlling the candidates that we're seeing.  Interesting, yes?



In any case, here's my rundown on McCotter and Johnson:

Thad McCotter (based on voting record here): 
I'm frankly 'meh' after looking over his record.  IMO, it looks like he's good on 2nd Amendment and Immigration (meaning, pro-2nd and anti Illegal) but is pretty much a RINO on everything else. YMMV.  I'm thinking not-so-much.

Gary Johnson (based on information here and here):  Not so much on his immigration stance (open borders).  Has a weird 'zero tolerance' thing about violence towards government employees (I'm not zero-tolerance anything because that takes situational issues out of the equation.)  Other than that, he's pretty much a small government/states' rights/fiscally conservative/libertarian guy.  Worth watching and trying to lobby to get him on the stage with everyone else to truly get an idea about how he stacks up.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Don't believe what you hear, especially when it's out of Obama's mouth....

So the Campaigner-in-Chief on his 'listening tour' just dismisses a farmer's concerns about over regulation.  "Don't always believe what you hear", Obama says.  Okay, how about some specific stuff that would have caused some concerns:  DOT floating a proposal about requiring ranchers to get commercial driver's licenses (abandoned for now); EPA farm dust rules (due this month if it flies); or how about fertilizer and pesticide use?   Or how about a $90,000 fine for selling rabbits without a license from the USDA (they can get the fine dropped if they get a license and give up their right to raise and breed them ever again).  Or the EPA categorizing milk as oil with attendent cleanup and storage issues?  OR the USDA hunting down the sellers of (OMG!) Raw Milk to hippies that don't want their milk pasteurized (and presumably are adults and can figure out there's possible consequences). 

This doesn't even go into the Clean Water Act, endangered species, or wetlands rules and regs that all affect farmers and farming.

I found these using a quick google search and I'd say that the farmer's concerns were pretty valid.

Oh thanks Jason Momoa, ruin the whole thing for me

If you don't know who Jason Momoa is (and I didn't until about three minutes ago), he's the star of the remake of Conan the Barbarian.  *yawn*  What I did not need to hear is Conan talking about calling his wife and kids and "having a nice little cry" because his horse went ass over teakettle.  Gah!

Perpetuating victimhood

From the NWI Times today.  Police have caught three kids who were breaking into cars in a pretty tony subdivision in Porter County, Indiana.  The thing that got me though is this part of the article: 
LaFlower said residents need to get in the habit of always locking their cars and keeping things like MP3 players, purses and GPS units out of sight.

"We'd like them to not keep those in the vehicle at all," LaFlower said. "They said they always checked the center console in the cars."

LaFlower said residents also may want to get in the habit of leaving their porch lights on at night to avoid becoming a victim.
Okay, so you're not supposed to keep your property where it is convenient to you because some low-life might steal it.  It's almost the same as blaming a woman for being raped--well dearie, you put it out there and just tempted someone.  Of course it's easier for the police if they don't have to work or anything.  But where does the line stop??  First you can't keep anything in your car.  So you put it in the house.  Then some low-life starts breaking in and taking stuff from the first floor of the house.  So you put everything on the second floor, if you have one.  etc. etc.   
 
I'm noticing that nothing was said about creating a neighborhood watch or citizen patrols or anything that might be deemed to be proactive--can't have the citizenry taking care of themselves or maybe becoming a deterrent to low-lifes coming into the neighborhood.  Hide and let the police who are minutes or tens of minutes away take care of it when seconds count....

Monday, August 15, 2011

It's not Greensleeves

But, in the course of discussing 'music to not get lucky by' with Brigid and Himself this weekend, William Shatner was mentioned.  So here's an excerpt of him doing 'Free Bird'.






It was a great weekend all the way around. Himself cooked a fantastic dinner and breakfast. There was gopher dancing, dogs, some favorite tunes. I'm pretty sure that both Brigid and Barkley had almost as good a time as we did.  There were also gifts on both sides--I got a Brigid-made paracord bracelet and she had a friend make us an ornament for the wall specifically for us (pictures later because I forgot to take any).  It is very nice with small spatulas, guns, and tools hanging from a blue and gold sunflower and we've got to find a prominent place for it in the house.

There was also a surprise guest appearance by the mighty and indominable Og yesterday afternoon, which was a great way to finish the weekend.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I'd put this under the awesome category...

So I get a text from my sister last night.  It says "I was bored so I went and ran a half marathon.  I'm either awesome or sad."  For myself, if someone just decides to run a half marathon and finishes, I'd vote that totally awesome.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Well I knew this was going to lead to nothing good

On August 3, 2011, NPR was nattering on about a new White House plan to fight terrorists within the United States.  Part of that plan was "Empowering Local Partners" (please note that I had to search for it since the original links were broken), which could also be known as "snitch on your neighbor" or "pulling a totalitarian agenda".  The main thrust of the NPR piece firmly talked about muslim extremists, but I was thinking at the time that they were being disingenuous.  And it seems that I was right.

Coming on the heels of the July 21, 2011 video wherein the Department of Homeland Security characterizes white conservative groups as the ones most likely to be terrorists (read a fantastic article here) is a new initiative by the FBI that is targeting preppers--those folks who put away food and other necessities in case there is a disruption in the supply lines of food/water/fuel, etc. 

The FBI is now targeting surplus stores and is asking that the proprietors keep records and start contacting the authorities if someone wishes to keep their identities private when purchasing matches and MREs.

A quote from the fantastic article by Watson linked above (and re-linked here) says it all:
No matter where you look, from East Germany, to Communist Russia, to Nazi Germany, historically governments who encourage their own citizens to report on each other do so not for any genuine safety concerns or presumed benefits to security, but in order to create an authoritarian police state that coerces the people into policing each other’s behavior and thoughts.
 And that is what our government is doing now.  Not letting a crisis go to waste.  Using the best of our intentions to pave a road to a freedom-stifling hell.  I think they are underestimating the will of the American People and our heritage of freedom, which is now being reborn.   The Oath Keepers have a list of things communities should be doing and that includes preparation.  Read their whole article at the link, but here's a part of it:

1. Food storage, fuel storage, emergency medical, and communications security and independence (and general preparedness). Since food is the hardest thing to improvise, it comes first, so we advocate doing as the Mormons do, by taking food storage seriously [including some MREs!]
2. Physical security and Independence – to include neighborhood watches; mutual aid associations; a volunteer sheriff’s posse (under direct command of the sheriff); and county militias established by county ordinances but staffed by self-supplied and self-funded volunteers (as is done in volunteer fire departments all over this nation); state defense forces under command of the governor; and ultimately, a true state militia, established by state statute, and capable of “repelling invasions” [just imagine Mark Potok reading that!].
3. Economic security and independence – as individuals and communities, including barter networks, use of silver and gold as real money, and sound money bills at the county and state levels (as Utah just passed).   See www.alt-market.com for details.
4.  State sovereignty and nullification of unconstitutional federal laws and actions.  The focus here is on restoring the Republic from the bottom up, by voting out oath breakers and voting in constitutionalists, till we have sheriffs, local and state legislators, and governors who have the knowledge, courage, and integrity to keep their oaths, up to and including being willing to defend the Constitution and the powers reserved to the states and to the people (see the Tenth Amendment) by supporting state sovereignty resolutions and nullification of unconstitutional laws.
[Go to www.operationsleepinggiant.com for more details on that program, and please get involved!]
When the government distributes handouts encouraging gun stores and military surplus stores to track, monitor, and snitch on their customers, you know we are in trouble.  But the answer is not to hide, afraid to train and practice preparedness.  The answer is for everyone to become a “prepper”, as in all the rebellious gladiators yelling out “I am Spartacus!” when the Roman General demanded to know where Spartacus was.   The proper spirit of response it be like Founding Father John Hancock saying “here, let me write my name nice and big, so King George can easily read it.”
 Tyranny is tyranny and this country is on that road if people do not resist government's efforts to turn us into drones, slaves, and serfs instead of free citizens.

I don't want my candidates chosen for me....

So they have a pretty wide field for the possible Republican presidential candidate next year.  Right now, according to polls, ANY Republican has a chance to beat Obama.  However, I don't want to settle this time or choose the lesser of two evils.  I want someone who will genuinely do their best to cut spending, rein in the EPA and other executive branch agencies, and will listen to the will of the people, not follow their own ideologies to the ruin of this country.

But then I hear that a couple of folks who have declared themselves to be candidates were excluded from the Republican debate last night.  I don't know much about either of them, for obvious reasons--they are being marginalized too by the Republicans and by the press.  I don't know about you, but I don't want the MSM setting the tone of the Republican field or telling me which Republican is the best one (the MSM really likes Romney, the Grandfather of Obamacare--hell no; or Huntsman--fuck a bunch of that).

I want to hear from Gary Johnson.  I want to hear from Rick Perry.  I even want to hear more from Pawlenty, just because he was willing to take on the sacred cow of ethanol subsidies.  I want to hear from anyone who is not being put forth as a 'frontrunner' by the MSM since it is in the best interest of the MSM to pick the weakest candidate.  Bachman and Santorum both lost me when they signed that Pledge thing.  Gingrich (time is past) and Romney (Romneycare) and Huntsman (got Harry Reid's approval--do I need to say more on that?) have all either lost me or never had me look at them a second time.  To my thought if someone is presently being marginalized, that's a signal to me to look at them closer.  Maybe I'll like them, maybe I won't, but I'm tired of having candidates shoved down my throat.  I want a true choice.

YMMV

Thursday, August 11, 2011

A tale of two Dicks

So Dick Lugar says that the American economy is strongSays pretty much the same thing as Dick Durbin, as a matter of fact.  Both are about as wrong as you can get.   Guess the longer you're in Washington, the more in lockstep you are.  Or Lugar is in fact Durbin or vice versa.  Hmmm... both with the same talking points, both for DREAM legislation, both are dicks.  Enough said, except for:

VOTE THEM ALL OUT!

I'm with Uncle Jay on this one...

Nineteen of the thirty families requested absolutely no pictures of the returning soldiers killed recently in Afghanistan at Dover AFB.  The Pentagon, bucking the trend of allowing the media to have their way, absolutely forbid them to be there and to take pictures.  Instead, the White House decides to post a picture of Obama at Dover AFB as their photo of the day.  The man and his people have absolutely no shame, no sense of propriety, and no honor.  Uncle Jay's blog title says it all.  I won't post a copy of the picture.  I have achieved a new level of disgust for Obama, his lack of morals, and his opportunism.  I honestly didn't think he could sink any lower in my estimation of his character, or lack thereof.  I was wrong.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

An academic's way of dealing with their mess-ups

Well, since Obama is an academic, I can see where he gets his penchant for blaming everyone but himself for problems.  I was sent a file a couple of months ago and used it in a pretty important report.  Turns out that the file wasn't actually the right one although it went out to quite a few people other than myself.  So the email I get with the correct file attached says "Somehow our files got crossed, here's the correct one."  *chirp chirp smile*

To which I replied (cc'ing the boss) "Here is the file that you sent to me and the rest of the world on XX date stating that it was the final version.  I'm also attaching your newest version since the one that you sent on XX date and was used in REALLY BIG REPORT was not the correct version." (This person had not cc'd the boss on the corrected version). 

Now this was not my mistake and the implication of 'files crossing' chapped my ass.  Hopefully I was clear enough in my response that the boss (who is a dim bulb on stuff like this) will even understand.

I gotta find a new job.

What prevents the Feds from just repealing something?

I'm not talking about Obamacare (which needs repealing too) but I'm talking about No Child Left Behind.  It was a stupid idea from the start--a federal government takeover of the United States' public school systems (and yes, actually Bush the Younger's fault).  And now, Arne Duncan, the former head of one of the most dysfunctional and in-debt school districts in the country (Chicago), is now declaring that 82% of schools are going to receive waivers from meeting the student testing requirments of the law.  Congress apparently can't get off its collective ass to fix the monstrocity and so the executive branch is waiving that magic waiver fond of which they are so fond, to make the requirements disappear into the ether.

I am very tired of poorly written and executed laws having to be 'waived' (aka selectively enforced) in order to work.  If any government entity has to 'waive' the enforcement of the laws of the land, then those laws should be repealed, defunded, and otherwise made NOT the law of the land, by regulation or any other government fiat, until Congress can create a new law that doesn't need waivers and that can be applied equally to all.  Equal protection under the law is explicit in the 14th Amendment and waivers have no place here in the US.

This would not apply to laws that the DOJ CHOOSES not to enforce, such as allowing straw purchases of firearms to further a political agenda or allowing Black Panthers to engage in voter intimidation.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Truth at the Base of it All

When I was talking with my co-worker this morning, one thing that came out it as we were discussing 'entitlements' is that "Government does not pay for anything."  Government takes our money and puts it in other places but every rule, every regulation, every law is paid for by the taxpaying American public.  Sometimes these payments are overt (property and income taxes or fines for breaking those rules, regulations, or laws).  Sometimes the payments are covert (increase regulation raising the price of diesel/transportation causing goods to be higher in price). 

But every bit is paid for by the people and by businesses, not by the government.  The government is not a revenue generating body; it is a revenue spending body.  Even income tax taken from government workers' paychecks is actually money taken from a private citizen since the government worker's salary is paid for by non-government entities.

It is a simple truth that is lost on many.

Stamping out misconceptions everywhere (or at least at work)

Had to burst someone's bubble today at work who felt that Tea Party Republicans are essentially the devil (or to use Biden's terminology, terrorists).  After about an hour of discussion about social programs and such, I was forced to tell her (along with fact that it was Tina Fey who had the "Russia from my house" quote and not Sarah Palin) that she is, in fact, a Tea Partier, based upon her views regarding welfare (drug testing for welfare recipients is good; and less government/cutting spending is really good).  Imagine her surprise!!

How Obama handles crises....

 This seems to be oddly appropriate considering the excuses brought out by the Whiner in Chief a.k.a. Captain No-Plan:

Sunday, August 7, 2011

West Side Story FAIL

Went to see West Side Story this week in Chicago (part of the Chicago on Broadway series).  Gotta say, I wasn't impressed.  I have to admit that I'm a fan of the movie (and yes, I know that Natalie Wood did not sing) but I've seen my share of plays and I knew there would be differences.  What I didn't expect was a cast that was almost universally sharp and pitchy and whoever the hell it was that played Maria couldn't muster a proper accent to save her life (or Tony's in this case).  She had kind of a pseudo humming/Russian/Puerto Rican thing going that had me cringing before she opened her mouth later in the play.

The guy who played Riff was okay as was the dude who played Bernardo.  The best one in the bunch though was the woman who played Riff's girlfriend. Go figure.  The choreography was also excellent, with the exception of the simulated ejaculation during the song 'Officer Krumke', which I felt was over the top and unecessary.

Something new for this tour was the interspersing of Spanish into the songs and dialogue when Maria and the other 'PRs' were speaking or singing.  I speak a bit of Spanish but the flipping back and forth, combined with the shrillness of the cast made it so I couldn't understand a word and completely ruined some of my favorite songs from the play.

It was nice because I attended with my mom and sister, but the play itself was not-so-much.  As a note, I am not a 'professional critic' or anything, just someone who paid good money and was disappointed.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

And they are going to be shocked, SHOCKED, I tell you....

So when Moody's and Standard and Poors lowers the United States' credit rating anyway, who, outside of Congress (with the exception of Tom Coburn) (ht:  Middle of the Right) and the MSM will be surprised?  The credit rating downgrade was never about the debt ceiling, it is about the amount of money that the United States is borrowing. 

I saw my first "It's the Spending, Stupid." bumper sticker the other day.  Someone should plaster them all over Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.

Remember folks, you didn't hear it here first, but you did hear it here.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Deadlines and crises

So, in the intersection of Suck and Ass, which is where academia meets the federal government, deadlines/crisis/panic/shady deals all crash together in the most epic of ways.  Having been caught in the microcosm of this chain of non-thought in the past two weeks, hence the uber-light blogging, I have come through it with a much better understanding of the mindset of Congress.  Unless you're right up on the deadline, you're free to go to movies, take a week off, claim internet troubles and in general just wander around in circles.  Then, four days before the big report or the big legislation is due, then you go into overtime mode and run in circles rather than wander.  And it's not just you who have to run in circles, it's staff (like me) or the American people who are having to deal with the fallout of the self-created and totally avoidable problem.

The problem with this fucking-off-until-the-last-minute (as the rest of us learned in college) is that, due to the urgency, there is a higher likelihood that mistakes will get made (in a report) and that legislation will have surprises that will be hidden from the American public until after the bill is passed because, again, no one will have time to do a thorough going-over (Obamacare, anyone).   Seriously, the federal legislature might have well have grabbed a six-pack of beer and a box of caffeine pills and tried to write a paper that is doomed for Fail but seemed brilliant at the time.

And $1.00 to $.40 (borrowing, you know), the Reid bill is going to screw the American people without the less than 50% of us who are paying for it, even getting dinner first.   I can only hope that it leads to Tea Party wins across the board in 2012.