Friday, November 26, 2010

Obama's Contributions to the Nation

Seen in article following news that The One had 12 stitches in his lip as a result of an errant elbow in a basketball game:

Obama is a sports fan, roots for his hometown Chicago teams and has often gone golfing in addition to playing basketball. AP

'Bout sums it up.


Obama (on the right, for a change) and AG Holder attending Constitutional Law seminar.

Saturday, January 09, 2010


Mea Culpa

The following article appeared originally in The Onion, June 24, 1998 | Issue 33•24.

I received it without attribution in a many-times forwarded email and committed the error of posting it here without checking on its history. I apologize to The Onion for inadvertently ripping off their rich satire. To any of you to whom it may have resonated as reality, I commiserate. "I feel your pain.*"

linearthinker, January 12, 2010

*William Jefferson Clinton (See, nik? I've learned my lesson well.)


WASHINGTON , DC - Congress is considering sweeping legislation which will provide new benefits for many Americans. The Americans With No Abilities Act (AWNAA) is being hailed as a major legislative goal by advocates of the millions of Americans who lack any real skills or ambition.

"Roughly 50 percent of Americans do not possess the competence and drive necessary to carve out a meaningful role for themselves in society," said California Senator Barbara Boxer. "We can no longer stand by and allow People of Inability to be ridiculed and passed over. With this legislation, employers will no longer be able to grant special favors to a small group of workers, simply because they have some idea of what they are doing."

California Senator Barbara Boxer
[Photo via Gerard Vanderleun's American Digest]

In a Capitol Hill press conference, House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid pointed to the success of the U.S. Postal Service, which has a long-standing policy of providing opportunity without regard to performance. Approximately 74 percent of postal employees lack any job skills, making this agency the single largest U.S. employer of Persons of Inability.

Private-sector industries with good records of nondiscrimination against the Inept include retail sales (72%), the airline industry (68%), and home improvement "warehouse" stores (65%). At the state government level, the Department of Motor Vehicles also has a great record of hiring Persons of Inability (63%).

Under the Americans With No Abilities Act, more than 25 million "middle man" positions will be created, with important- sounding titles but little real responsibility, thus providing an illusory sense of purpose and performance.

Mandatory non-performance-based raises and promotions will be given, to guarantee upward mobility for even the most unremarkable employees. The legislation provides substantial tax breaks to corporations that promote a significant number of Persons of Inability into middle-management positions,and gives a tax credit to small and medium-sized businesses that agree to hire one clueless worker for every two talented hires.

Finally, the AWNA Act contains tough new measures to make it more difficult to discriminate against the Non-abled. For example, it bans discriminatory interview questions such as "Do you have any skills or experience which relate to this job?"

"As a Non-abled person, I can't be expected to keep up with people who have something going for them," said Mary Lou Gertz, who lost her position as a lug-nut twister at the GM plant in Flint, Michigan, due to her lack of any discernible job skills. "This new law should really help people like me."

With the passage of this bill, Gertz and millions of other untalented citizens will finally see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Said President Obama: "As the President With No Abilities, I believe the same privileges that elected officials enjoy ought to be extended to every American with no abilities. It is our duty as members of the government to provide each and every American citizen, regardless of his or her inadequacy, with some sort of space to take up in this great nation."


Art imitates life...

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Flight Patterns

Flight Patterns

European starlings have a way of appearing in unexpected places — the United States, for example, where they are not native but owe their origin to a brief reference in Shakespeare’s “Henry IV, Part 1.” In 1890, a drug manufacturer who wanted every bird found in Shakespeare to live in America released 60 starlings in Central Park. After spending a few years nesting modestly under the eaves of the American Museum of Natural History, they went from a poetic fancy to a menacing majority; there are now upward of 200 million birds across North America, where they thrive at the expense of other cavity nesters like bluebirds and woodpeckers, eat an abundance of grain — as well as harmful insects — and occasionally bring down airplanes.

In Europe, where the birds are native — Mozart had a pet starling that could sing a few bars of his piano concerto in G major — they still have the power to turn heads. Each fall and winter, vast flocks gather in Rome. They spend the day foraging in the surrounding countryside but return each evening to roost. (Rachel Carson, author of “Silent Spring,” called the birds reverse commuters.) They put on breathtaking aerial displays above the city, banking in nervous unison, responding like a school of fish to each tremor inside the group.

The birds are beloved by tourists and reviled by locals — understandably, since the droppings cover cars and streets, causing accidents and general disgust. A flock of starlings is euphoniously called a “murmuration,” but there is nothing poetic about their appetites. Their ability to focus both eyes on a single object — binocular vision — allows them to peck up stationary seeds as well as insects on the move. In the countryside outside Rome, they feast on olives. Like us, the birds are enormously adaptable but what we admire in ourselves we often abhor in our neighbors.



When I was fifteen I was hospitalized for quite a while, first in isolation while they figured out what was wrong, and then in a private recovery room. The days were tolerable, but the evenings depressing. Each sunset an enormous flock of starlings darkened the sky.

Dusk near the winter solstice is the most depressing of times for me.


The diagnosis was viral encephalitis.

I had a nightmare while in the hospital. I dreamed I had 6 webbed toes on each foot.

I also fell in love with my nurse, something I've never disclosed before.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Virginia Tech

This morning's paper contains an article revealing the latest amendments to the official report on the Virginia Tech campus shootings in 2007.

Exact time frames are hard to establish from the article, but it seems an hour and a twenty minutes elapsed between first notification to families of staff of the two earliest shootings in the dorm and the general campus wide lock down order.

Yup. You read that right.

The lock down order came only after the policy committee had deliberated what to do it would appear. It's also interesting that campus trash collections were suspended 21 minutes before faculty and students were notified of the danger. Meanwhile, a member of the policy group "emailed a colleague in Richmond about 8:45 am that a gunman was on the loose, but warned the colleague to make sure the information didn't get out because it was not yet 'releasable'." Two families of the administration's policy group were notified at 8:05 am. The massacre in the classroom building began at 9:40 am.

Governor Tim Kaine now says administration actions were "inexcusable."

"If university officials thought it was important enough to notify their own families, they should have let everyone know," said Kaine.

One voice of moderate temperament was heard amid the uproar.

On campus Friday, Student Government Association President Brandon Carroll said he does not think the revised report damages the administration.

"Hindsight is 20/20," Carroll said. "It really upsets me that they're trying to bring back something bad that really hurt our community." [Wahhhhh.]

Only after victims' families met with university officials in the fall of 2008 were the volumes of e-mails, reports, and other data released which shed further light on the administration's behavior. Governor Kaine had resisted re-opening the probe.

Nothing to see...just keep moving. Move along, now. Our policy group is on the case.


It seems the administration policy group is loaded with slow learners.


(click to enlarge)

The shooter.

Let's revisit the official security actions in place to protect the campus populace from that fellow. From the current policy statement above: Any such individual who is reported or discovered to possess a firearm or weapon on university property will be asked to remove it immediately. Failure to comply may result in student judicial referral and/or arrest, or an employee disciplinary action and/or arrest.

Simply draconian.


My son had a close friend who may have been on campus that day. We've lost contact with him. An army vet. He introduced Ben to the joys of traveling lightly in the back country. They have a name for it that escapes me at the moment, something like "ultra-light backpacking." I'm sure Kevin and his army buddies had a different name for it. Kevin made him leave behind his roll of toilet paper. He survived, and became a better man for the experience. He now chews nails and spits rust.



Tuesday, December 01, 2009

...don't tell me I've nothing to do

Eric Heatherly - Flowers On The Wall

Rockers' will like this better than Stadler Bros version.

Ya gotta love the bass and drums!


Yesterday's posts were the spin off of a cross-word puzzle that had been nagging at me for a day or so.

Clue: Carina
Four letters
Answer: KEEL
Reaction: WTF?


Carina was also a Liberty Ship, if my memory is working. When I went to check the daily rate of ship production, I stubbed my toe on whether one of the years between '42 and '45 was a leap year, hence the trivia regarding the Ko Ran.


Leap Year is also affected by Al Gore's myth, another argument for the importance of refining AGW models to more accurately predict "climate change":

From wiki:

...However, there is little point in planning a calendar so far ahead because over a timescale of tens of thousands of years the number of days in a year will change for a number of reasons, most notably:

1. Precession of the equinoxes moves the position of the vernal equinox with respect to perihelion and so changes the length of the vernal equinoctial year.
2. Tidal acceleration from the sun and moon slows the rotation of the earth, making the day longer.

In particular, the second component of change depends on such things as post-glacial rebound and sea level rise due to climate change. We can't predict these changes accurately enough to be able to make a calendar that will be accurate to a day in tens of thousands of years

I suggest the ability to forecast the impact of tidal acceleration on the calculation of leap day will rank among the highest benefits derived from current climate research. Some will disagree.


For old western fans:

Randolph Scott's Ride Lonesome Capture Location

Looks a lot like the Dragoons in the Cochise Stronghold neck-o'-the-woods, about an hour SE of Tucson and several miles off I-10.

Nice country for old men, a bit more hospitable than West Texas. Popular among Snowbirds, judging by the license plates. You want to watch out for nighttime hikers coming up from Ol' Mexico, though. Border lands are just a bit to the south. A couple of troops of Boy Scouts, a few 4H Clubs, and some adult supervision by the local ranchers could'a had that fuckin' fence built by the 4th of July of 2006, if Bush hadn't got in the way. The A-10's out of Davis-Monthan could keep the no-go zone cleared with a napalm pass every week or so. Border Patrol could handle the rest.




The simplified equations of motion have been occupying my time recently. I had a devil of a time remembering that

x(t) = 1/2at^2 + v(o)t + x(o).

Trying to figure if the red flashing light went off and an airplane hit the tower in the dark, would the debris land on mom's house? Or not? Requisite assumptions are fairly easy to arrive at. Probability is vanishingly small. I think. We're not on the flight path for approach/departure from Rogers Airport. Helicopters do zoom around occasionally. The tower lights did go out one stormy night a few years ago. The attempt to report the problem to the authorities was interesting. No number was available for local FAA or airport flight control, there's no tower. The Po-leece Dispatcher was confused. The problem didn't seem to fit her job description. I think I finally told her I'd just keep an eye on it and call 911 when an aircraft went down. It was a while back, and my memory is hazy. There's probably about as much chance of that accident as there would be for a Northwest airliner to miss Minneapolis by a couple of hundred miles...

Here's another math problem from my student days:

The outcome:

2:11 PM 12/1/2009


Gene Therapy


Gene Krupa

Havin' a good time!


Gene Kelly

I'm singing in the rain...

At 3:00--3:40 of this one reminds me of walking with my boy.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Liberty Ships

Not long after my folks were married my dad put in an application for a crane operator's job in the Panama Canal Zone. The Kaiser shipyard in Long Beach squashed his application, declaring him critical to the Liberty Ship program.

Dad got mad and enlisted in the SeaBees at age 39, coming out a chief sometime after VJ Day. His battalion followed MacArthur from Australia through New Guinea and the Philippines. I was about two and a half years old when he first met me in Omaha. The story goes that I was then seated on the bar and proceeded to eat all their Maraschino cherries.


Liberty Ships

A listing of the original and completion names shows 2710 Liberty ships built between September 27, 1941 and September 2, 1945 [Gobal Security says 2751, the difference may be in the technical designation of hull type. ed.]. That averages just under 2-1/2 ships per day over the period for the entire program which included eighteen shipyards on the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific coasts.

Henry J. Kaiser ... became a master of mass-production. He had previously completed construction of Hoover, Bonneville and Grand Coulee Dams ahead of schedule, but had never before built a ship.


Kaiser's theories on mass-production created some mirth among conventional shipbuilders, but he continually reduced delivery times. His 75th ship, the JOSEPH N. TEAL, was completed in 10 days after the keel laying


Dad's absence from Kaiser doesn't seem to have affected them much.

Reflecting on my own career, I've since decided that acorns don't fall far from the tree.

More regarding the Religion of Peace

Why do the goat fucking, honor killing, sanctified liars pick a fight over every little slight, real or imagined?

More regarding the Religion of Peace:

...That is the straight usage, so do not wrong yourselves therein, and fight those who go astray collectively as they fight against you collectively. But know that Allah is with those who are pious.

Full passage:

...In the Islamic calendar, leap days are not used. The Qur'an says:

The number of months with Allah has been twelve months by Allah's ordinance since the day He created the heavens and the earth. Of these four are known as sacred; That is the straight usage, so do not wrong yourselves therein, and fight those who go astray collectively as they fight against you collectively. But know that Allah is with those who are pious.

Verily the transposing (of a prohibited month) is an addition to Unbelief: The Unbelievers are led to wrong thereby: for they make it lawful one year, and forbidden another year, of months forbidden by Allah and make such forbidden ones lawful. The evil of their course seems pleasing to them. But Allah guideth not those who reject Faith
. (Qur'an 9:36-37)


What does the koran say about Ground Hog Day, I wonder?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Scripture Lesson at Elephant Bar

He ventured forth to bring light to the world
The anointed one's pilgrimage to the Holy Land is a miracle in action - and a blessing to all his faithful followers

-Gerard Baker

"And it came to pass, in the eighth year of the reign of the evil Bush the Younger (The Ignorant), when the whole land from the Arabian desert to the shores of the Great Lakes had been laid barren, that a Child appeared in the wilderness.

The Child was blessed in looks and intellect. Scion of a simple family, offspring of a miraculous union, grandson of a typical white person and an African peasant. And yea, as he grew, the Child walked in the path of righteousness, with only the occasional detour into the odd weed and a little blow.

When he was twelve years old, they found him in the temple in the City of Chicago, arguing the finer points of community organisation with the Prophet Jeremiah and the Elders. And the Elders were astonished at what they heard and said among themselves: “Verily, who is this Child that he opens our hearts and minds to the audacity of hope?”

In the great Battles of Caucus and Primary he smote the conniving Hillary, wife of the deposed King Bill the Priapic and their barbarian hordes of Working Class Whites.

Obama fears the Blair effect as tour continues
The Europhiles are not the future, Mr Obama
The Bugle - Barack Obama is coming to Europe!
Our leaders go after some Obama magic
And so it was, in the fullness of time, before the harvest month of the appointed year, the Child ventured forth - for the first time - to bring the light unto all the world.

He travelled fleet of foot and light of camel, with a small retinue that consisted only of his loyal disciples from the tribe of the Media. He ventured first to the land of the Hindu Kush, where the

Taleban had harboured the viper of al-Qaeda in their bosom, raining terror on all the world.

And the Child spake and the tribes of Nato immediately loosed the Caveats that had previously bound them. And in the great battle that ensued the forces of the light were triumphant. For as long as the Child stood with his arms raised aloft, the enemy suffered great blows and the threat of terror was no more.

From there he went forth to Mesopotamia where he was received by the great ruler al-Maliki, and al-Maliki spake unto him and blessed his Sixteen Month Troop Withdrawal Plan even as the imperial warrior Petraeus tried to destroy it.

And lo, in Mesopotamia, a miracle occurred. Even though the Great Surge of Armour that the evil Bush had ordered had been a terrible mistake, a waste of vital military resources and doomed to end in disaster, the Child's very presence suddenly brought forth a great victory for the forces of the light.

And the Persians, who saw all this and were greatly fearful, longed to speak with the Child and saw that the Child was the bringer of peace. At the mention of his name they quickly laid aside their intrigues and beat their uranium swords into civil nuclear energy ploughshares.

From there the Child went up to the city of Jerusalem, and entered through the gate seated on an ass. The crowds of network anchors who had followed him from afar cheered “Hosanna” and waved great palm fronds and strewed them at his feet.

In Jerusalem and in surrounding Palestine, the Child spake to the Hebrews and the Arabs, as the Scripture had foretold. And in an instant, the lion lay down with the lamb, and the Israelites and Ishmaelites ended their long enmity and lived for ever after in peace.

As word spread throughout the land about the Child's wondrous works, peoples from all over flocked to hear him; Hittites and Abbasids; Obamacons and McCainiacs; Cameroonians and Blairites.

And they told of strange and wondrous things that greeted the news of the Child's journey. Around the world, global temperatures began to decline, and the ocean levels fell and the great warming was over.

The Great Prophet Algore of Nobel and Oscar, who many had believed was the anointed one, smiled and told his followers that the Child was the one generations had been waiting for.

And there were other wonderful signs. In the city of the Street at the Wall, spreads on interbank interest rates dropped like manna from Heaven and rates on credit default swaps fell to the ground as dead birds from the almond tree, and the people who had lived in foreclosure were able to borrow again.

Black gold gushed from the ground at prices well below $140 per barrel. In hospitals across the land the sick were cured even though they were uninsured. And all because the Child had pronounced it.

And this is the testimony of one who speaks the truth and bears witness to the truth so that you might believe. And he knows it is the truth for he saw it all on CNN and the BBC and in the pages of The New York Times.

Then the Child ventured forth from Israel and Palestine and stepped onto the shores of the Old Continent. In the land of Queen Angela of Merkel, vast multitudes gathered to hear his voice, and he preached to them at length.

But when he had finished speaking his disciples told him the crowd was hungry, for they had had nothing to eat all the hours they had waited for him.

And so the Child told his disciples to fetch some food but all they had was five loaves and a couple of frankfurters. So he took the bread and the frankfurters and blessed them and told his disciples to feed the multitudes. And when all had eaten their fill, the scraps filled twelve baskets.

Thence he travelled west to Mount Sarkozy. Even the beauteous Princess Carla of the tribe of the Bruni was struck by awe and she was great in love with the Child, but he was tempted not.

On the Seventh Day he walked across the Channel of the Angles to the ancient land of the hooligans. There he was welcomed with open arms by the once great prophet Blair and his successor, Gordon the Leper, and his successor, David the Golden One.

And suddenly, with the men appeared the archangel Gabriel and the whole host of the heavenly choir, ranks of cherubim and seraphim, all praising God and singing: “Yes, We Can.”

Fri Jul 25, 01:11:00 PM EDT

Posted by 2164th at The Elephant Bar, and elsewhere across the web.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A Novel Defense

On the heels of Hillary's Iowa come-uppance, her former campaign finance colleague went to court in California.

Hsu's lawyers had asked Judge Stephen Hall to dismiss his 1992 no- contest plea, arguing that Hsu's right to a speedy trial was violated because authorities were not actively pursuing him during his years as a fugitive. They could easily have arrested Hsu, his lawyers argued, at one of the fundraisers he hosted in California for prominent local politicians.


Happier Times


Almost makes me nostalgic for the 90's. So much entertainment then from the Clinton administration. You couldn't write that stuff, no one would believe it. Hillary better put the wheels back on her bus toot sweet.


I bet Hsu deliberately took a moderately heavy dose of pills on that train in Colorado just to get himself into custody. I was wondering at the time why the Clintonistas were letting him roam like a free range chicken. I suspect they had consultants looking for him.

Monday, December 24, 2007

"Charlie Wilson's War"



I have a couple of 8 x 10 color glossies of the real Charlie Wilson. In one he's accepting a certificate of some kind from a friend of mine who at the time was working for the Forest Service in Bishop, CA. The other shows Congressman Charlie on a mule in Afghanistan, supposedly among the mujahadeen. The award in Bishop was something to do with their "Mule Days" celebration, as I recall, and acknowledged his role in providing the Yankee mules used by the mujahadeen in support of their campaign against the Soviet invasion. The other showed Charlie with the resistance fighters, "on location" as it were. I'd like to see this movie just to witness how the Hollywood myth makers have distorted the true history. It's quite a jump from a string-of-mules to stinger missle, but then they're Hollywood. I suppose the mules could have been used to carry stingers. After 9/11 I had the photos tacked up alongside a map of Afghanistan in my living room. I pinned battle areas like Tora Bora and Mazar-e-Sharif.

This line from the following Bill Gertz article is hard for me to interpret: "That anti-American aspect of the film, namely that the Afghan operation ultimately caused the September 11 attacks, reportedly was altered after protests from Mr. Wilson and his former fiancee, Joanne Herring." Does Gertz mean that Charlie protested the implication, or lobbied to include the implication? My gut tells me it's the former. I guess now I'll have to see the movie.


December 21, 2007
Notes from the Pentagon

Charlie's movie

Conservative officials who served in the Reagan administration are upset by the left-wing slant of the new movie about the covert action program that helped Afghan guerrillas defeat the Soviet army during the 1980s.

"Charlie Wilson's War," out today, is based on a book about former Rep. Charles Wilson, Texas Democrat known widely on Capitol Hill during his tenure as "Good Time Charlie" who helped fund the semi-secret war that ultimately helped fell the Soviet Union.

The Reagan-era officials said the movie promotes the left-wing myth that the CIA-led operation funded Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda and ultimately produced the attacks of September 11, 2001.

Bin Laden, the officials said, never got CIA funding or weapons, and was not directly involved in Islamist extremist activities until years after the Afghan operation ended after the withdrawal of Soviet troops in 1989.

That anti-American aspect of the film, namely that the Afghan operation ultimately caused the September 11 attacks, reportedly was altered after protests from Mr. Wilson and his former fiancee, Joanne Herring.

The movie also erred by showing Mr. Wilson and his CIA collaborator, Gust Avrakotos, as enthusiastic backers of supplying advanced U.S. Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to the Afghan rebels.

Fred Ikle, the undersecretary of defense in the Reagan administration, said the CIA initially fought against sending Stingers, while Mr. Wilson was lukewarm on the matter. Both later supported the plan once rebels began downing Soviet gunships with them.

"Senior people in the Reagan administration, the president, [CIA Director] Bill Casey, [Defense Secretary Caspar] Weinberger and their aides deserve credit for the successful Afghan covert action program, not just Charlie Wilson," Mr. Ikle said in an interview.

The officials blamed the anti-Reagan slant of the film on the movie's screenwriter, Aaron Sorkin, the Hollywood liberal who regularly attacked conservatives on his television drama "The West Wing," also known as "The Left Wing" because of its liberal bias.


If you see the movie, just remember that Charlie was an enthusiastic backer of supplying mules, not necessarily stinger missles.

I watched part of The West Wing once. That was more than enough.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Chaos revisited

I was browsing at M. Simon's Power and Control blog when I came across his Practicing Chaos post.

Following his link to Michael Ledeen's article
at NRO I uncovered the following gem. After picking myself up off the floor, it got me to ruminating.

"The difficulty in planning against American doctrine is that Americans neither see fit to follow their doctrine nor even read their manuals." KGB Document

The KGB demonstrated incredible perception. The day-to-day activities recollected from roughly 30 years in the Federal bureaucracy bear out the truth in their statement. Must have been hell for the Soviets, until they realized what they were up against, and by then it was probably too late. One could paraphrase Churchill endlessly on the frustrations one encountered almost daily while coping with the bureaucracy, citing for instance, the unwilling led by the uninformed in pursuit of the worthless.

I have my own scars to bear witness to the feckless leadership of our Federal bureaucracy, and yet their situation was one to evoke sympathy from even the most callous observer when it was realized they were forced into institutional schizophrenia by the conflicting demands of their purse masters in Congress. I offer into evidence only the environmental vs timber production direction given to the US Forest Service from the 70s through the turn of the century. But even that conflicting direction cannot begin to explain why the bureaucratic machine insisted on reinventing the wheel at every shift in program direction or new daily work challenges.

The Forest Service Manual and Handbook contained relevant digests of both the Congressional direction and proven, nuts-and-bolts solutions to just gettin' the job done. These references were hugely ignored, gathering dust on bookshelves in empty offices, while the occupants of those offices attended an endless succession of workshops, training sessions, program indoctrination, and team building seminars. We quipped then about forest sociology having replaced forest science, but as in so many instances, our black humor concealed a sad truth. Toward the end of my career we had some of the prettiest hallways known to civilized man, covered with inspirational posters of eagles soaring into celestial skies so beautiful they brought tears to your eyes.

So, even while the American penchant for chaos may inadvertently have served us well in the Cold War, its application daily to the domestic chores of government would seem to have detracted from our communal well being. But wait. That bureaucratic chaos may have seemed a burden only until one realizes that those same inefficiencies of government may have enabled private enterprise to prosper, relatively unfettered by the full force of a truly efficient regulatory establishment.

That's the memo.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Overheard While Lurking

Defeating the environmentalist movement is thus as critical to the environment as defeating the socialist movement is critical for the poor. Graeme Bird

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Cosmic Rays, Solar Flares, and Clouds

The following commentary is extracted from yesterday's e-mail to the kids.

From M. Simon's post, "Clouds in Chambers", quoting a review of Dr. Henrik Svensmark's work (emphasis added):

For more than a decade, Henrik Svensmark of the Danish National Space Center has been pursuing an explanation for why Earth cools and warms. His findings -- published in October in the Proceedings of the Royal Society -- the mathematical, physical sciences and engineering journal of the Royal Society of London -- are now in, and they don't point to us. The sun and the stars could explain most if not all of the warming this century, and he has laboratory results to demonstrate it. Dr. Svensmark's study had its origins in 1996, when he and a colleague presented findings at a scientific conference indicating that changes in the sun's magnetic field -- quite apart from greenhouse gases -- could be related to the recent rise in global temperatures. The chairman of the United Nations Intergovernmental panel on Climate Change, the chief agency investigating global warming, then castigated them in the press, saying, "I find the move from this pair scientifically extremely naive and irresponsible." Others accused them of denouncing the greenhouse theory, something they had not done.

Svensmark and his colleague had arrived at their theory after examining data that showed a surprisingly strong correlation between cosmic rays --highspeed atomic particles originating in exploded stars in the Milky Way -- and low-altitude clouds. Earth's cloud cover increased when the intensity of cosmic rays grew and decreased when the intensity declined.

Low-altitude clouds are significant because they especially shield the Earth from the sun to keep us cool. Low cloud cover can vary by 2% in five years, affecting the Earth's surface by as much as 1.2 watts per square metre during that same period. "That figure can be compared with about 1.4 watts per square metre estimated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for the greenhouse effect of all the increase in carbon dioxide in the air since the Industrial Revolution," Dr. Svensmark explained.


To which I add:

Why do you suppose the Al Gores, the IPCC, and the other warming enthusiasts are so rabid in denoucing other scientists who challenge their pet theory that human caused CO2 is to blame for the insignificant amount of warming observed to date, and further challenge that their projections of catastrophic warming in the future are a fallacy? There are a couple of reasons, depending on who's talking.

The community of climate scientists pushing the warming mantra have literally billions of dollars in grant money flowing toward them for furthering their research along their own avenues of inquiry. The more they reinforce the political biases of the policy wonks who control the purse strings, the more they gain. Yes, children. Science is not pure as the driven snow. There is bias, fiddling with the data, withholding of data from those who would critique it, elitist posturing, and even some some nasty name calling. These folks have a lot of their lives invested in proving a certain outcome, and have become "believers" in the religious sense. That's not science as it should be, but it's never been a perfect world. Ask Galileo. The "believers" he encountered also had a religious bias; they gave us the science that said the universe revolved around the earth, but that was the "consensus science" of the day. Remember that the next time the warmers speak of the vast consensus for warming prognostications.

The other community that's just as dangerous, if not more so, is the leftist liberal elites who can't wait to seize control of the economic engines of the world's strongest economies to push through their command and control policies of social, business, industrial and energy regulation. No long term beneficial results have ever resulted from a socialist command and control government. You have only to look at the failed Soviet Union, the rust bucket states of Eastern Europe like Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, and East Germany before the yoke of Soviet oppression was lifted, the failing French economy, China under Mao, Cuba under Castro, today's Venezuela under Chavez, North Korea under Kim, the entire middle east under the oppressive yoke of 12th Century Islamic psychopaths, Laos under Pol Pot, Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, and Pemex...the government controlled Mexican oil industry. The United Nations, sponser of the IPCC, is a bloated, self-serving, feckless, impotent, inefficient debating society. Their "scientists" cannot even publish their latest IPCC update until it passes the scrutiny of the political bosses who have commissioned it. The IPCC Summary Report, intended for policy makers (i.e., politicians), was published months in advance of the final scientific report, and then the scientific report was revised to fit the conclusions presented in the Summary Report. Word games by word smiths with Ph.D. after their names.

Al Gore belongs to this second group, the elitists, who are forever telling everyone else how to live their lives, but who exempt themselves from the hardships they promote for the masses. Al Gore needs to get over himself, but sadly, he's probably so invested in his own messiah complex that it won't happen. He can't even accept that he lost the 2000 election to (gasp) George Bush.

Think of global warming as a period of really nice weather before the next big chill. You could witness a drift into the next ice age within your life times.

No pix tonight. Sorry.

Love, Dad

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Blue Angel Crash, MCAS Beaufort, SC

Last Maneuver, 4-21-07. Plane No. 6, just above center of photo, crashed about 2 minutes later.

Smoke rises over treetops, Beaufort, SC, 4-21-07. Plane No. 6 had been
banking through turns over the neighborhood, then disappeared below the treeline.

My daughter, granddaughter, and I saw these fellows doing the same
routines over her little cottage in Tucson last month. We loved it. The pilots appeared to be doing a bit of hotdogging over the Univ. of Ariz. campus area at that time. I joked that they were probably just tweaking the college liberals.

This is *a very strange incident.* These planes are maintained in absolute
top condition, the pilots are the best of the best, and the maneuvers, while noisy to both the willing and the unwilling spectators, are not that dangerous. The ship that crashed was flying solo...not in formation, so a midair collision is not a factor. I suspect somebody on the ground could have played a role.

[Edit: 10-11-08, The "not that dangerous" comment referred to the solo stunting being done across Tucson that day, not the formation flying done as part of their exhibition. Those maneuvers are breathtaking, as anyone knows who's seen them.]

We'll never know.

I don't expect any conclusions to come out of the Navy other than "pilot error."

via Drudge

Saturday, April 21, 2007

An Inconvenient Benchmark

In An Inconvenient Truth and elsewhere, Al Gore is on record predicting that a sea level rise of 20 feet is a realistic short-term prospect. This mantra drones on despite the fact the IPCC's current estimate, prepared by Global Warming enthusiasts, predicts a worst case end of century sea level rise of about 1/30 of the Gorean doomsday scenario.

John L. Daly has something to show the warmers, particularly Al Gore.
The 1841 sea level benchmark (centre) on the `Isle of the Dead', Tasmania. According to Antarctic explorer, Capt. Sir James Clark Ross, it marked mean sea level in 1841. Photo taken at low tide 20 Jan 2004.
Mark is 50 cm across; tidal range is less than a metre. © John L. Daly.
(Emphasis added.)

Look closely for this symbol marking the benchmark inscribed in the rock just slightly left of center of image: ___V___

I can't find the permalink for this photo post at John Daly's website, but as of April 21, 2007 it's the latest update, captioned: Last update - 2155 GMT, 31st Mar 2007.


Actually, the sea level dropped for a while during the mid-1990s.


Notes over coffee

Nigerian violence and election uncertainties contribute to a current spike in crude oil prices. Let's all try to remember this when we hear the democrats re-echo their anti-big-oil chants and Congressman Waxman initiates another congressional inquisition. c. 4-20-07


Starbucks news. Brace yourself. They plan to expand. I have a thought re Starbucks. Their coffee is considered burnt and bitter by some with good taste, like Melody. McDonalds' coffee has been voted far superior in taste tests. Why? Consider the size of Starbucks empire and the challenge of furnishing all those little green trimmed stores with quality beans. If they can devise a market for bitter coffee, and develop a house blend that permits cheaper beans to be roasted in such a way as to provide their signature taste, they have reduced the challenge of providing the raw material for their shops. In other words, train the American yuppie taste buds, as well as diluting that crappy taste in overpriced boutique latte's, mochas, and cappochini, and you can cash in on selling crap for chic. Until the public wakes up and realizes they've been had. c. 4-21-07


One ancient and revered civilization, let's say it was the Romans for the sake of this monologue, had a technique for avoiding endless debates and technical arguments while assuring quality control. When it came time to remove the braces and scaffolding from a new arch, the chief engineer was required to stand beneath it.

Off hand I can think of a few NASA "accidents" that might have had different consequences if certain program managers had been held to this standard.

But, I digress.


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Stopping Power

Today, April 16th, the day of the Virginia Tech massacre, is my birthday.

Every year for the rest of my life, I am going to be reminded on my birthday that my attempt to alert the American people to the lethal dangers of victim disarmament did not succeed in preventing this act of criminal terrorism.
Thus begins a post I just found at Free Republic in which author J. Neil Schulman generously makes available a free pdf copy of his Stopping Power, a book I encourage you to obtain and read.


Monday, March 26, 2007

From an email from a different friend: I'm Tired

Pasted below just as received is the text of an e-mail from a less liberal friend:


Fw: I'm Tired . . .


"I'm Tired"

Two weeks ago, as I was starting my sixth month of duty in
Iraq, I was forced to return to the USA for surgery for an injury I sustained prior to my deployment. With luck, I'll return to Iraq to finish my tour.

I left
Baghdad and a war that has every indication that we are winning, to return to a demoralized country much like the one I returned to in 1971 after my tour in Vietnam. Maybe it's because I'll turn 60 years old in just four months, but I'm tired:

I'm tired of spineless politicians, both Democrat and Republican who lack the courage, fortitude, and character to see these difficult tasks through.

I'm tired of the hypocrisy of politicians who want to rewrite history when the going gets tough.

I'm tired of the disingenuous clamor from those that claim they 'Support the Troops' by wanting them to 'Cut and Run' before! victory is achieved.

I'm tired of a mainstream media that can only focus on car bombs and casualty reports because they are too afraid to leave the safety of their hotels to report on the courage and success our brave men and women are having on the battlefield.

I'm tired that so many Americans think you can rebuild a dictatorship into a democracy over night.

I'm tire d that so many ignore the bravery of the Iraqi people to go to the voting booth and freely elect a Constitution and soon a permanent Parliament.

I'm tired of the so called 'Elite Left' that prolongs this war by giving aid and comfort to our enemy, just as they did during the Vietnam War.

I'm tired of antiwar protesters showing up at the funerals of our fallen soldiers. A family who's loved ones gave their life in a just and noble cause, only to be cruelly tormented on the funeral day by cowardly protesters is beyond shameful.

I'm tired that my generation, the Baby Boom --
Vietnam generation, who have such a weak backbone that they can't stomach seeing the difficult tasks through to victory.

I'm tired that some are more concerned about the treatment of captives than they are the slaughter and beheading of our citizens and allies.

I'm tired that when we find mass gra ves it is seldom reported by the press, but mistreat a prisoner and it is front page news.

Mostly, I'm tired that the people of this great nation didn't learn from history that there is no substitute for Victory.

Joe Repya,
Lieutenant Colonel, U. S. Army
101st Airborne


Minnesota's Lt. Col. Joe Repya volunteered to return to active duty for service in Iraq at age 59. His previous service includes command of a rifle platoon in Vietnam and flying helicopters in the first Gulf War.

Joe first came to public attention in March 2003 when, disturbed by the anti-war campaign mounted by Minnesota liberals, he arranged for the production of lawn signs saying "Liberate Iraq -- Support Our Troops." His effort garnered a lot of publicity, and Joe eventually distributed 30,000 signs.

From an e-mail to a friend: The Reality of Evil

Following is from a recent e-mail to a liberal friend. Seems appropriate to share with my wide ranging and erudite audience.


Liberals would have us abandon Iraq to these animals. Americans should ask themselves which side of this equation they're on, and if they decide good trumps evil, they ought to back away from the cut-and-run Bush Derangement Syndrome Democrats.

From a post by Teresa Monroe-Hamilton at the Noisy Room:


The Reality of Evil and the Men and Women of Munich

Courtesy of Newt Gingrich:

The news report came about mid-week. Maybe you saw it.

The Associated Press reported that terrorists in Iraq have passed an unthinkable threshold: They used two children to disguise a car bomb.

The car was waved through a checkpoint by American soldiers who could not imagine that children would be in a car filled with explosives. When the terrorists got to their target, they got out of the car and ran. They left the children behind in the car, and then blew it up.

There is a word for people who put children in a car to be blown up. The word is evil.

It’s Important That We Say It: Our Enemies Are Evil




Sunday, March 11, 2007

Getting to the Point

Daniel Pipes speaking to Danish Jews:

"In other words, either Israel ceases to exist, and the Arabs win, or Israel is accepted by the Arabs, and it is no longer at war.

Those are the true possible outcomes.

Compromise and mediation have proven to be a failure.”

From a Baron Bodissey post at Gates of Vienna.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

This Post's for Bodhi: SB 861, More Nanny State Travesty

Following is a MySpace bulletin received from my daughter Melody. Mel's dog Bodhi was the gentlest, friendliest pup I ever encountered. He converted me from being a pit bull hater to a friend of the breed. He was part boxer, part chow, and part pit
bull, if my memory is correct. All are "fighting breeds", but Bodhi put the lie to the myth of the visious *Pit Bull*. Just as with humans, it's the love and affection, or training and abuse that the child or the dog receives that creates either a loyal friend or a monster.

As this campaign suggests, "Ban the deed, not the breed."

Bodhi is most commonly translated into English as enlightenment. In Bodhi's case, Mel once explained it meant "less than fully enlightened."

Mel lost Bodhi when he was hit by a car in Tucson, September 29, 2006. I would never have expected the sorrow we all felt with his passing. It was like losing a member of the family.


Date: Jan 18, 2007 8:20 PM
Subject Please Read. This is awful.

Against it.

If any of you out there are my friends, I ask you out of the kindness of my heart to repost this. If you're not my friend, I ask you search for the source compassion in your soul and repost this anyway. More importantly, if you're in a position to, DO something about it.

This is about California legislation being passed to exterminate pit bulls. If it passes in California, it could be on it's way to anywhere. Someone has to try to make a difference...what if it were your pet?

It would be great if Myspace could be used for something good other than getting dates. Please pass the word along and post as many people can see this as possible.


This has to be stopped. We need to save these dogs.

Please repost this to your bulletins.

*****End of Melody's MySpace bulletin*****

Bodhi and Melody*

*Until recently Melody ran a snowcat for three winter seasons on the grooming crew at Heavenly Valley, Lake Tahoe, and operated backhoes and water trucks during the off season. She's now in Portland.


Update 1-21-07, 12:30 AM:

Overcome by events:

It appears the bulletin Melody received and forwarded via MySpace is out of date.
Despite vehement protestation from animal advocates worldwide, SB 861 was signed into law on October 7, 2005. Thus, BSL (Breed Specific Legislation) has invaded California.

An initiative effort in California was mounted but failed in 2006.
A swift response followed. A January 2006 referendum effort failed to acquire enough signatures. Immediately after that two lawsuits were filed to defeat the legislation. Both are now pending. The first was brought in a federal court in San Francisco by The Chako Rescue Association of the Pit Bull Terrier. The second was filed in Sacramento by the American Canine Foundation (who will also intervene in the San Francisco case.) Unfortunately, the two sides appear to be completely at irreconcilable odds and at loggerheads. The former group favors a $1,000 breeder's permit fee. The later entity wants to protect rights of breeders.

But all may not be lost. It appears reason still prevails in more enlightened communities, even in California.
Good news perhaps for all came down on March 3, 2006. The Ohio Supreme court ruled in a Toledo case that local and state breed-specific "vicious" dog laws are unconstitutional.

There have been other successes combating BSL across the country:

Zuniga v. San Mateo Dept. of Health Services (1990) 218 Cal. App. 3d 1521, 267 Cal. Rptr. 2d 755. The court found there was not sufficient evidence to prove Pit Bulls have an inherent nature of being dangerous.

Carter v. Metro North Assocs. (1998) 255 A.D. 2d 251; 680 N.Y.S.2d 299 A New York appellate court determined that the alleged propensities of Pit Bull Terriers to behave more viciously than other breeds had not been authoritatively established.

Huntsville v. Four Pit Bull Puppies (Ala. 08-30-02), No.1010459, unreported. ACF sued the city of Huntsville Alabama in 2002 in a case that was heard by the Alabama Supreme Court. The court determined that American Pit Bull Terriers were not dangerous.

The anti-BSL movement is supported by a broad based collection of rational organizations who realize this legislation is faulty for a number of reasons. It penalizes responsible dog owners, does not ultimately stop the malicious breeding and training of problem dogs, is difficult to implement with any element of fairness due to the difficulty of identifying breeds by enforcement personnel, and fails to recognize that it's not the breed, but the conditioning of the pet, that's the root problem. The irresponsible or malicious owners are the group to target...not the breeds.

The American Kennel Club, the California Veterinary Medical Association, the Sacramento Council of Dog Clubs, The Animal Council, and a host of other animal organizations strongly oppose(d) SB 861.
Breed-specific legislation is opposed by the AKC, the American Veterinary Medical Association, the National Animal Control Association, the ASPCA, and a host of national animal welfare organizations that have studied the issue and recognize that targeting breeds simply does not work.

BTW: PETA supported SB 861.


Molon Labe

Friday, January 12, 2007

US Air Force Blows Recruiting Opportunity, Boosts Playboy Circulation

AP: "Michelle Manhart, seen here posing for a photo in San Antonio Thursday, is featured in the February issue of Playboy magazine. She has been relieved of her Air Force duties pending an investigation."


Associated Press
Jan. 12, 2007 09:39 AM

SAN ANTONIO - An Air Force staff sergeant who posed nude for Playboy magazine has been relieved of her duties while the military investigates.

In February's issue, hitting newsstands this week, Michelle Manhart is photographed in uniform yelling and holding weapons under the headline "Tough Love." The following pages show her partially clothed, wearing her dog tags while working out, as well as completely nude.

"This staff sergeant's alleged action does not meet the high standards we expect of our airmen, nor does it comply with the Air Force's core values of integrity, service before self, and excellence in all we do," Oscar Balladares, spokesman for Lackland Air Force Base, said in a statement released Thursday.
Manhart, who is married with two children, joined the Air Force in 1994, spending time in Kuwait in 2002. She trains airmen at Lackland.

As if trainees need to be protected from the unveiled female...just let her trainees fantasize I guess.

This nonsense is sponsered by the same people who are revising the Air Force uniform.

Which is the bigger crime?

via Drudge

USAF photo via PlancksConstant

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


The Worst Case
Republican ineptness, Democratic ideology, George W. Bush’s inability to ignite a fire, and something contemptible in the American character have combined to bring us to this point. We will not see our way past it without blood, flames, and grief. There are people—there is no discreet way to put this—who pulled the lever last Tuesday that began the process of their own deaths.
J.R. Dunn, American Thinker

Monday, August 21, 2006

A Middle Earth Fable

How To Negotiate With Terrorists

This brief blog entry takes you through a series of negotiations over time between peacemakers and terrorists:

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of a line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line.

The peacemaker introduces himself. The terrorist kills him.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker asks, "why did you kill my friend?" The terrorist kills him and rapes his wife.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker says, "Stop that!" The terrorist kills him, rapes his daughter and kills his wife.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker says, "I'll pay you $1000 if you stop attacking us." The terrorist agrees to the deal, takes the $1000, and kills him.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker appeals to the United Nations. The United Nations says the peacemaker is at fault. The terrorist kills him.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker now has a gun, and threatens to use it. Other peacemakers start chanting the old 60's whine, "Can't we all just get along?" The peacemaker hesitates. The terrorist kills him.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker tries to convince his peacemaker friends that the terrorists aren't going to respond to negotiations, but they insist that if he kills the terrorist it'll just make the other terrorists mad. The peacemaker reluctantly agrees to try negotiating again. The terrorist kills him., his entire family, and his neighbor's family.

A heated debate now ensues between the peacemakers who want to be nice to the terrorists and the peacemakers who believe that there can never be peace until the terrorists are all dead. While they are debating, the terrorists kill 15 more peacemakers.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker asks himself, "Which is more important: being liked by everyone, or protecting my family?" The terrorist pulls a knife to kill the peacemaker, but the peacemaker pulls a gun and kills the terrorist first. The United Nations condemns the peacemaker's use of unproportional force.

Many of his peacemaker friends turn against him.

A peacemaker walks up to the left side of the line. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line. The peacemaker apologizes for what his friend did to the other terrorist. The terrorist kills him, his entire family and his neighbors, and threatens to destroy the city as soon as they develop a bigger weapon.

A peacemaker refuses to meet at the line because every time a peacemaker goes to the line the terrorist kills him. A terrorist walks up to the right side of the line and fires rockets into the peacemaker's town. The United Nations condemns the way the peacemaker provoked the terrorist by refusing to come to the line and meet with him.

Generations pass and not much changes until one day when the son of a peacemaker decides that the old strategy simply won't work. He walks up to the left side of the line a little early. As the terrorist approaches the right side of the line the peacemaker shoots him. Another terrorist approaches to replace the first, and the peacemaker shoots him too. This scene plays out several more times. Then a terrorist approaches carrying a white flag, but he also has weapons. The peacemaker shoots him. A terrorist next approaches with a ceasefire resolution from the U.N. The peacemaker shoots him also. A large group of terrorists approach and the peacemaker shoots them all and drops a nuclear bomb on the city they came from. The peacemaker continues killing the terrorists until the terrorists are all dead.

There is finally peace on earth and the United Nations takes the credit.

(No peacemakers or terrorists were harmed during the writing of this blog.)

posted by Hurricane Harry

Found at Atlas Shrugs.