Monday, December 28, 2009

death to the dictator

again, iran's is one green movement worth supporting. too bad chairman zero is oblivious to their struggle.

Friday, December 25, 2009

south of several borders,

"the night before Christmas" changes a little...

Christmas morning

Most of us have heard the story of the birth of Jesus Christ into the world. The Gospels describe it in various ways, but sometimes its meanings get lost as we repeat it in our traditions. Recently I heard a sermon explaining the nativity story from Mary's point of view, but something else just hit me tonight - one metaphorical angle that I don't remember hearing before...

Jesus was born in a stable, and it wasn't like the glittery ceramic scenes which decorate many homes and churches this time of year. A crowded and messy stable. A stable filled with noisy, smelly animals that probably just finished a long hot day of work or travel. Animals that only hoped to avoid predators and the whip. Animals, that didn't know anything better than to eat, sleep, procreate, and die in their own filth.

Those animals represent the wretched and pathetic state we all were in before our blessed Lord saved us.

"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased."

Thursday, December 24, 2009

snowing here

"melts on the ground, not in the air!"

update: i spoke too soon. the snow has already covered 80% of the grass, drifting up to 30 mm, and visibility is down to 5.2 × 10^-14 parsecs!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

answer this

With the Obama-crats trying to take over everything in sight (GM, banks, the entire healthcare industry, etc...), shouldn't we at least be opposing them on the basis of anti-trust laws?

"nil"s bore

Distilling this argument to near-bumpersticker length: "Nietzsche was a hypocrite for believing the words "everything is meaningless" to have any meaning."

dfw 2020

Asking as a Fort Worth native, please please please do not hold the olympics in DFW. Some agree:
I understand why people want to hold the Olympics, but really all who benefits from it are IOC members who are bribed...err...lobbied, construction companies, and local elected officials...

Please Dallas don't mire us in a generation of debt just so we can pound our chest on TV for 3 or 4 weeks... Montreal just this week paid off their debt from the 1976 Olympics and that London is 8 billion dollars over their rainy day budget extension placed on top of the orginial budget figure... oh and that the final tally for China's Olympics was 40 billion USD.

www.chicagoansforrio.com

heh, indeed

now that's a hockey stick!

pantheists pan theists

One of many points about the "Avatar" movie:
(The protagonist race is) saved by their faith in Eywa, the "All Mother," described variously as a network of energy and the sum total of every living thing.

If this narrative arc sounds familiar, that’s because pantheism has been Hollywood’s religion of choice for a generation now... Kevin Costner discovered when he went dancing with wolves. It’s (in) Disney cartoons like "The Lion King" and "Pocahontas." And it’s the dogma of George Lucas’s Jedi, whose mystical Force "surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together."...

Today there are other forces that expand pantheism’s American appeal. We pine for what we’ve left behind, and divinizing the natural world is an obvious way to express unease about our hyper-technological society. The threat of global warming, meanwhile, has lent the cult of Nature qualities that every successful religion needs -- a crusading spirit, a rigorous set of ‘thou shalt nots,' and a piping-hot apocalypse.
Read the rest at NOFP

by the people, for the people

Instapundit linked to "Contract with America 2.0", but I'm linking it too so that it will get more exposure...

:)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

wrap it up

lileks, on presents:
I understand why my father wanted to spend time between presents, savoring the warm glow of gratitude and pleasure before it was extinguished by curiosity, and the next box was ripped open.

I should note that we didn’t rip. We opened carefully. My mother saved the paper, ironed it, reused it; she also saved boxes. If you ripped brand-new perfect paper you could see a hint of pain behind her smile, and in retrospect I don’t know why we just didn’t go outside, find a dry patch of sidewalk and step repeatedly on a crack.
mom occasionally saved boxes, but rarely saved used wrapping paper. her mom was more likely to save boxes & cards; i don't remember dad's mom saving anything but the cards. seems like they all saved the bows though...

i also agree with his twitter entry that clarifies a vague feeling i had earlier this week:
The message behind "We Need a Little Christmas" is: forced rote gaiety will distract us from our looming sense of dread and depression.

death and taxes

both ensured by harry reid's arrogance

viewpoint adds:
Maybe it's not too much of a stretch to estimate that there are about 280 Americans who favor ObamaCare. They're all Democrats and they're all in Congress. No one who'll have to pay for it seems to want it, but that's not stopping the Democrats from ramming it down our throats and forcing us to accept their plan to nationalize about 16% of our total economy. The Wall Street Journal is particularly incensed, as would be anyone who has followed the sordid details of how Harry Reid has bribed and bought enough Senators to win passage of a bill that will cripple the economic prospects of our grandchildren and greatgrandchildren and destroy the best health care system in the world.

But don't take my word for that. Read the bill of particulars that the WSJ brings against the Democrats' plan.
Read the rest, it's revolting.

Monday, December 21, 2009

let me be perfectly clear

...okay, not me, but mark steyn:
The Obama speechwriting team doesn't seem to realize (how unpopular Obama has become). They seem to be the last guys on the planet in love with the sound of his voice and their one interminable tinny tune with its catchpenny hooks. The usual trick is to position their man as the uniquely insightful leader, pitching his tent between two extremes no sane person has ever believed: "There are those who say there is no evil in the world. There are others who argue that pink fluffy bunnies are the spawn of Satan and conspiring to overthrow civilization. Let me be clear: I believe people of goodwill on all sides can find common ground between the absurdly implausible caricatures I attribute to them on a daily basis. We must begin by finding the courage to acknowledge the hard truth that I am living testimony to the power of nuance to triumph over hard truth and come to the end of the sentence on a note of sonorous, polysyllabic if somewhat hollow uplift. Pause for applause."...

When you consider all the White House eyeballs that approve a presidential speech, it's truly remarkable that there's no one to scribble on the first draft: "Scrub this, Fred. It makes POTUS sound like a self-aggrandizing buffoon." It's not even merely the content, but the stylistic tics: "I do not bring with me" – as if I, God of Evan Thomas' Newsweek, am briefly descending to this obscure Scandinavian backwater bearing wisdom from beyond the stars.

nowhere to run

linked from instapundit:
...there can be little doubt which word won the prize for most important adjective. 2009 was the year in which "global" swept the rest of the political lexicon into obscurity. There were "global crises" and "global challenges", the only possible resolution to which lay in "global solutions" necessitating "global agreements". Gordon Brown actually suggested something called a "global alliance" in response to climate change. (Would this be an alliance against the Axis of Extra-Terrestrials?)

Some of this was sheer hokum: when uttered by Gordon Brown, the word "global", as in "global economic crisis", meant: "It's not my fault". To the extent that the word had intelligible meaning, it also had political ramifications that were scarcely examined by those who bandied it about with such ponderous self-importance. The mere utterance of it was assumed to sweep away any consideration of what was once assumed to be the most basic principle of modern democracy: that elected national governments are responsible to their own people – that the right to govern derives from the consent of the electorate.

The dangerous idea that the democratic accountability of national governments should simply be dispensed with in favour of "global agreements" reached after closed negotiations between world leaders never, so far as I recall, entered into the arena of public discussion. Except in the United States, where it became a very contentious talking point, the US still holding firmly to the 18th-century idea that power should lie with the will of the people.

Nor was much consideration given to the logical conclusion of all this grandiose talk of global consensus as unquestionably desirable: if there was no popular choice about approving supranational "legally binding agreements", what would happen to dissenters who did not accept their premises (on climate change, for example) when there was no possibility of fleeing to another country in protest? Was this to be regarded as the emergence of world government? And would it have powers of policing and enforcement that would supersede the authority of elected national governments? In effect, this was the infamous "democratic deficit" of the European Union elevated on to a planetary scale. And if the EU model is anything to go by, then the agencies of global authority will involve vast tracts of power being handed to unelected officials. Forget the relatively petty irritations of Euro‑bureaucracy: welcome to the era of Earth-bureaucracy, when there will be literally nowhere to run.
not even to the fort worth water gardens...

to continue:
If the impact of our behaviour on humanity at large is much greater or more rapid than ever before then we shall have to find ways of dealing with that which do not involve sacrificing the most enlightened form of government ever devised. There is a whiff (ed: a.k.a. rancid reek) of totalitarianism about this new theology, in which the risks are described in such cosmic terms that everything else must give way. "Globalism" is another form of the internationalism that has been a core belief of the Left...

...we had better come up with new mechanisms for allowing people to have a say in how they are governed. Maybe that could be next year's global challenge.
Yes, I know this is how the story ends, but since we don't know when it will end, we must fight totalitarianism while we are able.

Detroit, the urban frontier

Here's some community organizing that actually works:
In most cities, municipal government can’t stop drug dealing and violence, but it can keep people with creative ideas out. Not in Detroit. In Detroit, if you want to do something, you just go do it. Maybe someone will eventually get around to shutting you down, or maybe not. It’s a sort of anarchy in a good way as well as a bad one. Perhaps that overstates the case. You can’t do anything, but it is certainly easier to make things happen there than in most places because the hand of government weighs less heavily.

What’s more, the fact that government is so weak has provoked some amazing reactions from the people who live there. In Chicago, every day there is some protest at City Hall by a group from some area of the city demanding something. Not in Detroit. The people in Detroit know that they are on their own, and if they want something done they have to do it themselves.
There is such a dire shortage of protein in (Detroit) that Glemie Dean Beasley, a seventy-year-old retired truck driver, is able to augment his Social Security by selling raccoon carcasses (twelve dollars a piece, serves a family of four) from animals he has treed and shot at undisclosed hunting grounds around the city. Pelts are ten dollars each. Pheasants are also abundant in the city and are occasionally harvested for dinner.
This might sound awful, and indeed it is. But it is also an inspiration and a testament to the human spirit and defiant self-reliance of the American people. I grew up in a poor rural area where, while hunting is primarily recreational, there are still many people supplementing their family diet with wild game. Many a freezer is full of deer meat, for example. And of course, rural residents have long gardened, freezing and canning the results to help get them through the winter. So this doesn’t sound quite so strange to me as it might to you. The fate of the urban poor and the rural poor are more similar than is often credited. And contrary to stereotypes the urban poor often display amazing grit and ingenuity, and perform amazing feats to sustain themselves, their families and communities.
Read more about this and some other frontiers-to-be.

Friday, December 18, 2009

ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

update 2 & bump: new title graphic, plus a random quote generator underneath.

trying to switch this blog to one of blogger.com's new modular templates, so it might look different, incomplete, or otherwise funny for a while...

update 1: done for tonight. will adjust the title graphic soon <\subliminal_hint_to_tlmc>

Thursday, December 17, 2009

health insurance

zomblog explains one objection to public healthcare:
I’m speaking specifically of medical problems caused by:
  • Obesity
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Reckless behavior
  • Criminal activity
  • Unprotected promiscuous sex
  • Use of illicit drugs
  • Cultural traditions
  • Bad diets
Now, I really don’t care if you overeat, smoke like a chimney, hump like a bunny or forget to lock the safety mechanism on your pistol as you jam it in your waistband. Fine by me. And as a laissez-faire social-libertarian live-and-let-live kind of person, I would never under normal circumstances condemn anyone for any of the behaviors listed above. That is: Until the bill for your stupidity shows up in my mailbox. Then suddenly, I’m forced to care about what you do, because I’m being forced to pay for the consequences.

keep counting

at this "world turned upside down" post, commentor tr-nj asks:
What's the difference between the Million Man March and the Tea Party gatherings in Washington DC? Only one of them had more than a million people attend, and they appeared to be drinking tea.
:D

...to continue

when it rains,
it pours,

and sometimes
there's lightning.

at least

it's better than
an extended drought.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

the sensible option

in which the difference between "theophobe" and "atheist" is explained:
Militant theophobes are celebrating that an Arkansas judge is letting them put forth a display celebrating nihilism and meaningless as an "in yer face" to Christian displays celebrating Christmas. Let's ponder this. Why be happy about the opportunity to spoil someone else's holiday if you are only motivated by reason and skepticism? Why not have your celebration of nihilism and self-centeredness in one of the other 11 months of the year, if it's not about an "in yer face" to Christians? If you are really motivated by reason and skepticism, why even care about other people celebrating what they believe?

Look, let's say I professed not to like fast food. Now, if I just avoided eating at fast food restaurants, that would be proof enough that I was sincere in my beliefs. If I stood outside McDonald's slapping Big Macs out of people's hands, you'd think I was a nut. If I demanded that the Government make it illegal for the golden arches to be displayed in public, you'd think I was a tyrant.

The intellectual vanity and vacuity of theophobes is encapsulated in this quote from a high school sophomore who refused to read the Bible even as literature because, "This is the word of God. People take this literally... I don't want to read about what they believe to be true." That isn't reason, that's shoving your fingers in your ears and saying "Neener, neener, neener." There's something wrong when refusal to understand that which you do not believe is considered a mark of intellectual sophistication.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

cleaning up the mess

Melissa Clouthier via Eratosthenes
So let me get this straight.

Stupid regulations by Democrats cause the banking crisis. Banks tank on bad debt that was required by stupid regulations by Democrats. Banks “saved” by being owned by the government with tax payer dollars. Banks pay back money, because, surprise!, government is a harsh task-master. Government blames the bankers for... fulfilling their obligation. Then, President Obama tells bankers to make more loans... probably to the very people who couldn’t afford loans to begin with.

How about the government minds their own **** business? How about banks giving money to good risks? How about people and businesses taking on responsible, minimal debt?
also via Eratosthenes, Chairman Zero's real report card

oh oh oh

the un-Christmas card

Monday, December 14, 2009

doing business on craigslist

it's just a thought, but if you place an ad on craigslist for housekeeping or tutorial services, and want to profit from it, you might want to consider *replying* to anyone who responds to that ad...

Thursday, December 10, 2009

here's my answers

Yes, I actually filled in and submitted their questionnnaire, answering the next-to-last question thus: What other issues and ideas should the President consider?:
  1. Upholding the Constitution as-written.
  2. Showing America a valid birth certificate.
  3. Stop appointing tax cheats and child molesters to public office.
  4. Repudiating any and all ties to anti-American groups, such as: Bill Ayers, WeatherUnderground, Black Panthers, Tony Rezko, etc., etc., ...
  5. Saluting the US flag.
  6. Stop sucking up to terrorists.
  7. Slashing taxes and slashing the size of bureaucracies that only serve as a drag on the real economy and just create volumes of useless regulations.
thanks directorblue

update: forgot to mention soros, the anti-rove

Warnings, from Isaiah 10:1-4:
Woe to those who enact evil statutes
And to those who constantly record unjust decisions,

So as to deprive the needy of justice
And rob the poor of My people of their rights,
So that widows may be their spoil
And that they may plunder the orphans.

Now what will you do in the day of punishment,
And in the devastation which will come from afar?
To whom will you flee for help?
And where will you leave your wealth?

Nothing remains but to crouch among the captives
Or fall among the slain.
and James 5:1-6:
Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. Look! The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered innocent men, who were not opposing you.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

do the math

The facts:
  1. The best social program is gainful employment.
  2. Government has a poor track record of creating jobs.
  3. Over 70% of all jobs and over 50% of all non-government payroll in the U.S. are created by small business owners.
  4. Taxation and regulation increase costs for employers, resulting in a loss of jobs.
Given these facts, please answer the following questions:
  1. How should government remedy the unemployment problem?
  2. Why doesn't government do these obvious remedies?
  3. Why do people vote for those who make the unemployment problem worse?
update: having trouble answering these questions? texas provides some hints.

all you need is love

...and a bulletproof vest. good riddance to john lennon, the actual greasy spaniard.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

list of lies

or, the top ten most recent reasons to never trust democrats:
The White House will convene a “jobs summit” tomorrow against a backdrop of rising unemployment, soaring debt, and declining public confidence in the Obama Administration’s economic program. Washington Democrats staked their credibility on a nearly trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ that was supposed to be about putting people back to work, but has instead produced countless examples of wasteful government spending while more than three million more Americans have lost their jobs.

1. UNEMPLOYMENT "AT EIGHT PERCENT OR BELOW"

CLAIM: “Just 10 days before taking office, Obama’s top economic advisers [Christina Romer & Jared Bernstein] released a report predicting unemployment would remain at eight percent or below through this year if an economic stimulus plan won congressional approval.” (Associated Press, 6/14/09)

FACT: The nation’s unemployment rate now stands at 10.2%. The President and several members of his economic team explicitly stated that the ‘stimulus’ was needed to avert double-digit unemployment.

2. IMPACT FELT "IMMEDIATELY"

CLAIM: “Q: If the president gets his way and gets this package approved, he signs it into law, how soon before -- the American public starts to feel results, the creation of jobs? NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL DIRECTOR LAWRENCE SUMMERS: You’ll see the effects begin almost immediately.” (CNN, 2/9/09)

FACT: The U.S. economy has lost more than three million jobs since the trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ became law.

3. "90 PERCENT ... PRIVATE SECTOR"

CLAIM: “More than 90 percent of the jobs created by this plan will be in the private sector.” – President Obama (News conference, 2/9/09)

FACT: “Although President Obama initially said that 90 percent of the jobs created by the stimulus program would be in the private sector, the data suggests that well over half of the jobs claimed so far have been in the public sector.” (The New York Times, 11/4/09)

4. "NO EARMARKS OR PET PROJECTS"

CLAIM: “There will be no earmarks or pet projects in this bill.” – Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (Floor statement, 2/13/09)

FACT: The trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ has produced countless examples of wasteful government spending... ‘stimulus’ funds were reportedly used by one town to hire a new worker whose job is to apply for more ‘stimulus’ funds from Washington.

5. "A VERY FISCALLY SOUND PACKAGE"

CLAIM: “We must make sure the public understands this is a very fiscally sound package.” – Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Talk Radio News Service, 3/10/09)

FACT: With the help of the trillion-dollar ‘stimulus,’ the Obama Administration spent more in its first 100 days than all previous presidents have combined. The national debt has topped $12 trillion for the first time in U.S. history. The federal government is now operating on a budget that doubles the national debt in five years and triples it in ten.

6. "A LOT MORE JOBS CREATED"

CLAIM: “The second hundred days you’re going to see a lot more jobs created.” – Vice President Joe Biden (ABC’s This Week, 7/5/09)

FACT: The U.S. economy lost roughly 930,000 jobs in June, July, and August. It was during this period that the President proclaimed he could “see a light at the end of the tunnel.”

7. "A LOT MORE AMMUNITION LEFT"

CLAIM: “There is a lot more ammunition left in the stimulus package.” – Jared Bernstein, the Vice President's chief economist(CNNMoney.com, 10/30/09)

FACT: “The government’s economic stimulus spending has already had its biggest impact and probably won’t contribute to significant growth next year, a top White House adviser said Thursday.” (Associated Press, 10/22/09)

8. MORE WORK, NOT MORE JOBS

CLAIM: “I think we got the Recovery Act right. … It may be desirable to have a given amount of work shared among more people. But that’s not as desirable as expanding the total amount of work.” – National Economic Council Director Lawrence Summers (The Washington Post, 11/8/09)

FACT: The Obama Administration’s attempt to suddenly make job creation seem like a lesser goal of the trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ flies in the face of numerous public statements made in the days before the bill was passed, including the President’s statement that creating jobs was his “bottom-line number one.”

9. RAISES SAVE JOBS

CLAIM: “If I give you a raise, it is going to save a portion of your job.” – Department of Health and Human Services spokesman (Associated Press, 11/4/09)

FACT: This is one of several attempts by the Obama Administration to define a job “saved or created” by the ‘stimulus.’ In this particular case, the AP found “more than 9,300 existing employees in hundreds of local agencies who received pay raises and benefits and whose jobs weren’t saved.” In a newly released report, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office states that “it is impossible to determine how many of the reported jobs would have existed in the absence of the stimulus package.”

10. "YOU HAVEN'T SEEN WASTEFUL SPENDING"

CLAIM: “We’ve been in business seven, eight months. You haven’t seen wasteful spending. No one has said we spent $2 million on things that didn’t exist.” – Vice President Joe Biden (The Daily Show, 11/17/09)

FACT: “Stimulus jobs reported in non-existent congressional districts... Of all the problems found in the latest round of stimulus reporting, add another one: congressional districts that don’t exist. ABC News reported yesterday that White House officials have found 700 mistakenly credited congressional districts out of more than 130,000 stimulus grants.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 11/18/09) “The reports on jobs created or saved by the $787 billion economic stimulus package are ‘riddled with inaccuracies and contradictions,’ the federal watchdog overseeing the spending acknowledged Thursday.” (USA TODAY, 11/19/09)
via directorblue

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

the placebo is worse than the hypochondria

i.e. fixing global warming causes global warming
In 1985, scientists from the British Antarctic Survey found a giant hole in the ozone layer of Earth's atmosphere over the South Pole. This discovery prompted a largely successful international effort to ban CFCs, the chemicals largely responsible for man-made thinning of the ozone layer.

Unfortunately, a new analysis from Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) suggests that stopping ozone depletion may actually increase global warming and speed up sea level rise...
how about this time we trust the one who controls the winds, and not a bunch of eggheads?

Monday, November 30, 2009

credit where credit is due

the stOpped clOck is right this time:
"Mr. Obama said academics should be receiving an athletic-like focus. And as he presented a set of initiatives intended to improve the science and math scores of American students, he announced that the White House would begin holding an annual science fair starting next year.

"If you win the N.C.A.A. championships, you come to the White House. Well, if you're a young person and you've produced the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too," Mr. Obama said. "Scientists and engineers ought to stand side by side with athletes and entertainers as role models..."
i won't even quibble that some athletes and most entertainers shouldn't be role models...

update & bump: right again? unprecedented!

update 2: and here's a third topic to agree with chairman zero, in which rightwingsparkle explains:
"We were right. Obama isn't up for the job. But in truth, he is proving that in every way except for this decision. The leftwing of the blogosphere is already beside itself over this. I think Obama will be shocked at the vitriol that will be thrown at him from his own party.

We on the right need to do what the left never did with Bush. We need to support our troops and back Obama up on this, because it is the right thing to do. If Obama has the courage to send the additional troops against the wishes of his party, then we on the right need to have the courage to be behind him 100%. This is not "Obama's war," this is OUR war. As long as our soldiers are fighting in foreign lands we should support them no matter who is President."

keep watching

climategate grows

Friday, November 27, 2009

kiva loans

found at viewpoint, this idea looks better than many charities

twilight sucks

Here In Idaho mocks

BSPCN enumerates

(p.s. i prefer not to use "suck" as a pejorative, but there is no better title)

lest we forget

Socialism has been tried in America before, and (as always) it failed miserably.
We have much to learn from the history of the Plymouth Plantation. For, in their first year in the New World, the Pilgrims conducted an experiment in social engineering akin to what is now contemplated; and, after an abortive attempt at cultivating the land in common, their leaders reflected on the results in a manner that Americans today should find instructive.

William Bradford, Governor of the Plymouth Colony... and his advisers considered "how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop than they had done, that they might not still thus languish in misery." And after much debate... they chose to abandon communal property, deciding that "they should set corn every man for his own particular" and assign "to every family a parcel of land, according to the proportion of their number, for that end."

The results were gratifying in the extreme, "for it made all hands very industrious" and "much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been... the experience that was had... well evince the vanity of that conceit of Plato's and other ancients... that the taking away of property and bringing in community into a commonwealth would make them happy and flourishing." In practice, America's first socialist experiment "was found to breed much confusion and discontent and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit."

In practice, "the young men, that were most able and fit for labor and service, did repine that they should spend their time and strength to work for other men's wives and children without any recompense. The strong... had no more in division of victuals and clothes than he that was weak and not able to do a quarter the other could; this was thought injustice. The aged and graver men to be ranked and equalized in labors and victuals, clothes etc., with the meaner and younger sort, thought it some indignity and disrespect unto them. And for men's wives to be commanded to do service for other men, as dressing their meat, washing their clothes, etc., they deemed it a kind of slavery, neither could many husbands well brook it."

Naturally enough, quarrels ensued. "If it did not cut off those relations that God hath set amongst men, yet it did at least much diminish and take off the mutual respects that should be preserved amongst them. And [it] would have been worse if they had been men of another condition" less given to the fear of God. "Let none object," he concludes, that "this is men's corruption, and nothing to the course itself. I answer, seeing all men have this corruption in them, God in His wisdom saw another course fitter for them."

The moral is perfectly clear. Self-interest cannot be expunged. Where there is private property and its possession and acquisition are protected and treated with respect, self-interest and jealousy can be deployed against laziness and the desire for that which is not one's own, and there tends to be plenty as a consequence.

But where one takes from those who join talent with industry to provide for those lacking either or both, where the fruits of one man's labor are appropriated to benefit another who is less productive, self-interest reinforces laziness, jealousy engenders covetousness, and these combine in a bitter stew to produce both conflict and dearth.
(slightly edited for length, emphases mine)

the winds of change

apparently "UK's Brown" doesn't know the winds have changed...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanks Giving



O give thanks unto the LORD, for He is good;
for His mercy endureth for ever.

Let the redeemed of the LORD say so,
whom He hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy,

and gathered them out of the lands,
from the east and from the west,
from the north and from the south.

They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way;
they found no city to dwell in.

Hungry and thirsty,
their soul fainted within them.

Then they cried unto the LORD in their trouble,
and He delivered them out of their distresses.

And He led them forth by the right way,
that they might go to a city for habitation.

Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness,
and for His wonderful works to the children of men!

For He satisfieth the longing soul,
and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.

They that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
being bound in affliction and irons,

because they rebelled against the words of God
and contemned the counsel of the Most High,

therefore He brought down their heart with labor;
they fell down and there was none to help.

Then they cried unto the LORD in their trouble,
and He saved them out of their distresses.

He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death,
and broke their bonds asunder.

Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness,
and for His wonderful works to the children of men!

For He hath broken the gates of brass
and cut the bars of iron asunder.

Fools, because of their transgression
and because of their iniquities, are afflicted.

Their soul abhorreth all manner of meat,
and they draw near unto the gates of death.

Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble,
and He saveth them out of their distresses.

He sent His word and healed them,
and delivered them from their destructions.

Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness,
and for His wonderful works to the children of men!

And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving,
and declare His works with rejoicing!

They that go down to the sea in ships,
that do business in great waters:

these see the works of the LORD
and His wonders in the deep.

For He commandeth and raiseth the stormy wind,
which lifteth up the waves thereof.

They mount up to the heaven,
they go down again to the depths;
their soul is melted because of trouble.

They reel to and fro and stagger like a drunken man,
and are at their wits' end.

Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble,
and He bringeth them out of their distresses.

He maketh the storm a calm,
so that the waves thereof are still.

Then are they glad because they are quiet;
so He bringeth them unto their desired haven.

Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness,
and for His wonderful works to the children of men!

Let them exalt Him also in the congregation of the people,
and praise Him in the assembly of the elders.

--------

He turneth rivers into a wilderness
and the watersprings into dry ground,

a fruitful land into barrenness
for the wickedness of them that dwell therein.

He turneth the wilderness into a standing water
and dry ground into watersprings;

and there He maketh the hungry to dwell,
that they may prepare a city for habitation,

and sow the fields and plant vineyards,
which may yield fruitful increase.

He blesseth them also so that they are multiplied greatly,
and alloweth not their cattle to decrease.

Again, they are diminished and brought low
through oppression, affliction, and sorrow.

He poureth contempt upon princes,
and causeth them to wander in the wilderness where there is no way.

Yet setteth He the poor on high from affliction,
and maketh their families like a flock.

The righteous shall see it and rejoice,
and all iniquity shall stop her mouth.

Whoso is wise and will observe these things,
even they shall understand the lovingkindness of the LORD.

football

at .438 of a century old, i just now realized something: it's not so much that i hate football. what i really hate is having no choice but to watch football...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

AGW is a hoax

Anthropogenic Global Warming has been proven to be a hoax.

The proof: read the east anglia emails

One summary: read this post

quoting one commentor: "Did silly Al forget to invent a security system for his internet?"

LOL


update: read more & follow links at the anchoress & michelle malkin

Monday, November 23, 2009

turn over rocks

...and the bugs & worms won't like it...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

britcoms

just overheard a line on tv from some old british comedy on pbs that inadvertently describes me:
"he has a certain flair for appearing derelict"
:)

Friday, November 20, 2009

darkness falls

the obama depression in words.

the obama depression in pictures
.

the obama depression in ratings.

the obama depression in double-standards.

remember how dark it got during fdr's tyranny, and how much better things got when the country rid itself of his national socialist mistakes?

remember how dark it got during the battle of britain, and how much better things got when that country rid its skies of the national socialist invaders?

remember how dark it got in east berlin, and how much better things got when that city rid itself of its communist oppressors?

i'm seeing a pattern, and i'm hoping it will not take long to throw out our current plague of socialist losers...

creativity

there's an app for that.

update: there's a lie for that too.

update 2 & bump: as darmok might have said "obama, with pants blazing".

taliban bananas

Which part of it's illegal to provide business services to the Taliban and their supporters does Google not get?

off the menu

via dustbury:
Have you heard about McDonalds new Obama Value Meal? Order anything you like and the guy behind you has to pay for it.

PDS network

All Palin Derangement Syndrome, all the time:
"Love Sarah Palin or not, one has to admit the press is so undone by her that they are both aggressive and passive-aggressive in their hate, and they betray themselves continually in all sorts of ways. They betray their snobbism; they betray their spitefulness, and most emphatically, they betray the fact that our “fourth estate” is populated mostly by perpetual adolescents...

They betray their hate, their spitefulness and their perpetual adolescence very succinctly, here, in this piece about Palin’s spectacularly well-attended book signing in Michigan:
Country music played as Palin’s tour bus, painted to resemble the cover of her book, pulled up to the Woodland Mall in Grand Rapids.

“I just can’t tell you how good it is to be back in Michigan,” the former Alaska governor . . . Alaska and Michigan have so much in common, with the huntin’ and the fishin’ and the hockey moms, and just the hardworking, patriotic Americans who are here,” Palin said.
Ah, those rubes lining up were treated to “country” music... And then here comes former Governor-Palin-Buckshot-Annie and her too-large family, droppin’ ‘er g’s and layin’ on the “hardworking, patriotic Americans” schtick with a graceless trowel...

The press is so busy embracing urban irony, they do not realize the disoriented, out-of-touch clowns they have become; just like those out-of-touch Beltway players they so love to promote. The clown-politicians are going to be voted out of office in the next two elections, barring fraud. And the clown-press is going to then stump around in their floppy clown feet, sadly beeping their horns and shaking their heads, wondering how it all fell apart.

The American public was... swayable in 2008, when the press spent every last dime of its credibility convincing America that Barack Obama was the smartest man ever to run for president, that he was “sort of God”, that he was “stepping down” to accept the presidency...

So, persuaded by the positivism of the press, Americans voted for a charismatic fellow whose college transcripts, friendships and background -and seemingly all of his instincts- were cloaked in a secrecy untroubling to incurious media... The guy who, since becoming president, has revealed himself to be... a flip-flopping, thin-skinned, secretive, teleprompter-dependent, far-left radical spend-a-holic who talks incessantly and does not listen, who can’t tell us where the money has gone; a guy who says pretty much anything that comes into his head, whether it is true or not, and figures that’s the new history; a “uniter” who has locked the opposition party out of every policy debate (there actually is no debate, anymore) and has weakened our influence abroad (by becoming “the worst sort of ally”) and our security at home, has disrespected, snubbed or betrayed every one of our allies, cozied up to tyrants and done little in a bare year besides bankrupting the country, dissing his predecessor at every opportunity, making us wonder what sort of government he is fomenting, and whether he is in fact, actively working to tear the country apart...

The American people... are not going to listen to the press, anymore. They will no longer be swayed by stuck-up 14-year-olds telling them who is stupid and who is smart, because they’ve seen just how incredibly stupid the common-sense-deficient “smartest people in the world” tend to be...

The press has not had President Bush... to use as an outlet for their boundless disdain, They need an outlet, because they are frustrated. They cannot allow themselves to admit that they -they! who are so smart, so clever- have been utterly hoodwinked by the supposed-genius of Barack Obama (who said yesterday that “accounting is an inexact science”) – and they need a reassuring “stupid” focalpoint on which they can direct their scorn and reassure themselves that they are smart, and cool and not at all parochial and closed off.

Palin is that outlet, now Bush is gone, and the putzes in the press can’t mock, spite, roll-their-eyes or seethe enough about her. But their mugging and huffing and mocking is not working, this time... Whatever Palin’s weaknesses, and she does have them, the outsized disdain of the press for this woman... is backfiring on them, and to her advantage."

separation of church and state

"Separation of church and state is a good thing for everyone involved. The separation of religion from public life is not."

(yes, i know, i link to viewpoint a lot...)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

poverty is recovery

not only is the stimulus plan flushing ~$240,000 down a sinkhole for every job (allegedly) created, the compass on the official map even points to the left of true north.



this administration can hardly get anything right. ;)

update 1: just like my tax dollars, it looks like the image i uploaded is also missing... <\conspiracyvoice> will try to reupload tonight.

update 2: image now shows up sporadically. hmmm...

update 3: oh look! they provide a form to report fraud waste & abuse. i wonder how many citizens are brave enough to point out the obvious: that this whole "stimulus" crock is a fraudulent waste of taxpayer dollars and an abuse of power.

Friday, November 13, 2009

freedom of meep

(For the 98% of us who didn't know, arcane profanity ahead)

Dustbury, Theodora Michaels, and I will vigorously defend our right to say "meep":
Danvers High School is banning students from uttering the word “meep,” a trademark of Beaker from “The Muppet Show.”

The Salem News reported Principal Thomas Murray banned the word after school officials got wind of a student plan brewing on Facebook to stage a major disruption on school grounds using the “meep.”

WBZ-TV reported Murray informed students in an e-mail and phone message that police are monitoring the situation.

The Urban Dictionary defines meep as another way to say “ouch,”or “uh-oh.” It can also be a substitute for a swear word.
I personally abstain from swearing as much as possible, but this rule is ridiculous. Immature as it may be, kids will find a way to curse, and banning this word will 1) encourage its use, and 2) encourage them to find new curses, or give a vulgar meaning to some word.

An aside, I'd rather hear that m-word than the f-word. If nothing else, its use would have made "Reservoir Dogs" much more entertaining to me... one example:
Nash: That meep! That sick meep! That meepin meeptard!

Orange: Marvin, I need you to hold on. There's cops waiting less than a block away.

Nash: What the meep are they waiting for? This meeping guy slashes my face, and he cuts my meeping ear off! I'm meeping deformed!

Orange: [yells] Meep you! Meep you! I'm meeping dying here!

ideas have consequences

The 20th century was simply Columbine High School writ large.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

cast down the idols

My "faith in America" is not based on faith in "America", but on "faith" in America.

oh my...

Unless you list your ethnic status as "Easily-Offended-American", go check out this recipe: Turbaconducken
Just in time for the winter season comes a recipe that is sure to bring bacon lovers some warm holiday cheer. Turbaconducken. That’s right — a chicken stuffed in duck stuffed in a turkey, all wrapped in bacon. Otherwise known as a bacon-wrapped turducken.
If you made it this far, go read their recipe, and the many comments - in which are raised a few issues:
"eww gross, i'm a vegetarian"
then why are they visiting www.BACONtoday.com? hypocrites...
"that'll give you diabetes"
another comment answers "type 1 diabetes is caused by your immune system attacking your pancreas... has nothing to do with your diet... type 2 diabetes is based around the carbohydrate and insulin resistance... which is why most type 2 diabetics are coached on eating meals higher in protein..."
"you should've deboned the poultry"
correct. the idea is to be able to slice all the way through, so that all meats are presented together in each serving.
"this offends peta and muslims"
good! "if your opponent is quick to anger, seek to irritate him." - sun tzu


(via snadrs)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The cost of PC

The cost of a PC is far less than the price of political correctness that Hasan's victims paid.
Government authorities have punctiliously avoided mention of the killer's religion and his associations with radical Islamists in the days following the massacre at Fort Hood. President Obama admonishes us not jump to conclusions, but this sounds a little strange coming from the man who had no trouble jumping to the conclusion that Professor "Skip" Gates was the victim of "stupid" racist cops in Cambridge Massachussetts last summer.

Imagine how quick everyone would be to "jump to conclusions" had a Christian walked into an abortion clinic shooting everyone in the place while shouting "Jesus is Lord." Would President Obama be urging us to withhold judgment about the killer's motivations until "all the facts were in"? If a fundamentalist pastor walked into a gay bar and opened fire would the media recoil from calling the man a domestic terrorist? Would the President say that the killer might have "just snapped," and that we shouldn't assume that the man's religion played a role? I very much doubt it.

There would, in fact, be no end of pontificating on the alleged deep current of misogyny, hatred and bigotry running through American Christianity, but Hasan, we must understand, was a Muslim so we must tread lightly so as not to smear the millions of good Muslims in this country. We must be careful not to assume that he was in fact acting on the same motives that inspire his co-religionists around the world to kill and maim whomever and whenever they can.

There was no reticence whatsoever among our political leaders last summer to portray angry retirees at town hall meetings as terrorists, but we dare not suggest that a Muslim mass murderer is a terrorist until every i is dotted and t crossed even if the man has just perpetrated a classic act of Islamic terrorism.
(link not in original article)

Monday, November 09, 2009

orbiting fort hood

three(ish) observations of hasan's madness:

via doug ross

via dustbury

via van helsing

Saturday, November 07, 2009

saturday funnies

i haven't seen this week's "saturday funnies" regular feature at the jungle hut, so here's a couple to tide you over:






and some new cnn slogans - read post and comments

Friday, November 06, 2009

that's crazy

update: one cnn headline said "what set off maj. hasan?". apparently cnn doesn't read yahoo news:
Soldiers reported that the gunman shouted "Allahu Akbar!" — Arabic for "God (sic) is great!" — before opening fire.
---

i've only met one sane psychiatrist and one sane muslim, and the fort hood shooter isn't one of them:
"(Major Nidal Malik Hasan) was making outlandish comments condemning our foreign policy and claimed Muslims had the right to rise up and attack Americans," Col Lee told Fox News.

"He said Muslims should stand up and fight the aggressor and that we should not be in the war in the first place." He said that Maj Hasan said he was "happy" when a US soldier was killed in an attack on a military recruitment centre in Arkansas in June. An American convert to Islam was accused of the shootings.

Col Lee said that other officers had told him that Maj Hasan had said "maybe people should strap bombs on themselves and go to Time Square" in New York.
like they say, it's the rotten 99.9% that give the .1% a bad name...

Thursday, November 05, 2009

fog

...and the clearing thereof:
The internet chapter of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, a secret copyright treaty whose text Obama’s administration refused to disclose due to “national security” concerns, has leaked. It’s bad... ISPs have to cut off the Internet access of accused copyright infringers or face liability. This means that your entire family could be denied to the internet — and hence to civic participation, health information, education, communications, and their means of earning a living — if one member is accused of copyright infringement, without access to a trial or counsel.
If you don’t have free speech, you don’t have free anything else.

“Remaking America” should be called “The Fog of Obama.” Except, it’s not just Obama, or his assorted rights-eroding, speech-silencing, sovereignty-surrendering, cognitive-dissonance-embracing, and utterly hypocritical elitist pals.

We are living in an era of sublime phoniness... and the one tool that can penetrate through that increasingly dense and lingering fog of fakery, the internet, is being seriously imperiled...

The outcome of the NY-23 election does not mean anything that anyone is saying it means. NY-23 was not about candidates... wasn’t even about ideologies, per se. It was about the noise and fog of war and the manner in which that fog obliterates the clarity needed to focus on the proper target, effecting the change necessary to, in the end, beat back the larger and encroaching evil.

The larger, encroaching evil is contained in the first link of this post. It is huge; it is not remotely connected, in theory, to NY-23, because it is a worldwide, global evil.

But in NY-23, after a great deal of political grasping and some mild hysterics, the best candidate actually won. He won after politicians of national prominence came in to work against him. He won, even though there was a momentum-gaining force at the back of his opponent.

He won because, despite all of that fog, voters - who now understand that they were nothing but grifter’s marks in 2008, victims of a shameful bait-and-switch that has left them distrustful of all political machination and all mainstream media - looked at who they trusted to represent their most pressing immediate interests.

the pot calling the dove black

Realizing that they have no legal basis, the UN invents another scheme to guilt-trip the productive portions of society:
Yvo de Boer, the top U.N. climate official who oversees the (global warming/cooling scam) negotiations, said any decision emerging from Copenhagen that is accepted by all 192 countries would be "morally binding" even without formal legal status.
For the UN to claim something is "morally binding" is beyond laughable, as proven by their record of im- and a-morality:

UN-backed Congo military offensive results in more than 1,000 civilians killed, 7,000 raped, and 900,000 displaced.

Fifty UN peacekeepers receive slap on wrist for sex abuses.

UN slaps its own wrist for massive Oil-For-Food corruption.

UN peacekeepers in Liberia have been accused of selling food for sex from girls as young as 8.

UN promotes sexual promiscuity to children.

UN leaves its own soldiers to die.

UN plans to steal by illegal taxation.

Too bad they don't just withdraw, as they do from certain other opposing forces which shall remain (cough ISLAM cough) nameless: "Embattled UN rethinking Afghan-Pakistan role"

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

think again

Rightwingsparkle:
"If Republicans think they can slide into 2010 on the back of an unhappy out-of-work populace disappointed with Democrats, they better think again. Republicans used to say that "any Republican would be better than a Democrat." We don't say that anymore...

In other words, just because you have a "R" next to your name, doesn't mean we are going to vote for you. Prove yourself. Tell me you believe in the constitution. Tell me you believe in state rights. Tell me you will not spend any more money that we don't have. Tell me you will not allow this government to take over private industry. Tell me you will let business thrive with low taxes, less red tape, and incentives. Tell me you believe in freedom, liberty, and the principles this country was founded upon. Tell me that government was never meant to be our daddy. Tell me that we will teach people not to depend on the government, but to bear responsibility for their own lives."
read the rest.

p.s. since we have been "told" a lot of stuff that didn't mean anything, i'd edit this second paragraph to delete the numerous "tell me"s, so it would read:

"Believe in the Constitution and state rights. Do not spend any more money that we don't have. Do not allow government to take over private industry. Let business thrive with low taxes, less red tape, and incentives. Believe in freedom, liberty, and the principles this country was founded upon. Know that government was never meant to be our daddy. Teach people not to depend on the government, but to bear responsibility for their own lives."

complain

i could complain about minor incidents over the last week and a half, only to sound as shallow as the complainant of this king's x song
ozone disappearing in the sky
bud man asking us why ask why
if i could find my magazine this bug would die
i complain
china boy standing up to a tank
southern boy living in the house of yanks
if i can't seem to get my motorbike to crank
i complain

complain so much easier
complain so much easier
complain so much easier, easier

small kid begging for a crumb of bread
next kid bloated lying nearly dead
i wonder what to take for my aching head
i complain
lots of people crying for a little rain
whole nation learning how to live with pain
i don't know how I'm gonna clean this little stain
i complain.

complain so much easier
complain so much easier
complain so much easier, easier

black man singing mississippi blues
africa starves a little baby drools
i'm trying to figure out all the basketball rules
i complain
mr. rush limbaugh giving me the facts
treetops falling and the newsman yaks
I'm thinking about carter and how I'm gonna be taxed
hey

complain so much easier
complain so much easier
complain so much easier
complain, complain
there's probably at least 5.99 billion other people out there who had worse weeks than mine, localmalcontent being one of them.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

scary, presidential version

Did you know that if you rearrange the letters in "Barack Hussein Obama" you can spell "Narcissistic Rage"? Me either! ;)

overdraft fees

a good social cost-cutting measure

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

it burnssss us, precious!

A new study suggests exposure to too much light at night may cause depression

what's the big hurry?

viewpoint:
At the same time the President counsels prudence and patience in Afghanistan, he's insisting that we absolutely cannot wait another month to pass health care reform. It's a matter of the highest urgency that it be passed now because thousands are losing their jobs and thus their coverage every day. It's so urgent, in fact, that we cannot even delay long enough to allow legislators and the public to study the bill. Yet even if one of the plans currently before Congress passes tomorrow the reforms won't really kick in until 2013, so why the rush?

scary, lawsuit edition

another from nofp:
The United States Courts of Appeals for the Second and Fifth Circuits recently have reversed lower court dismissals and allowed government (2nd Cir.) and private individuals (5th Cir.) to sue companies for excessive greenhouse gas emissions...

And that means contingency fees. And thus the promise of copycat lawsuits... We're off to the races in private party climate change class action litigation!

scary, economic edition

pravda via nofp:
While taking a small breather from mouthing the never-ending propaganda of recovery, never mind that every real indicator is pointing to death and destruction, the American Marxists have noticed that the French and Germans are out of recession and that Russia and Italy are heading out at a good clip themselves. Of course these facts have been wrapped up into their mind-boggling non-stop chant of "recovery" and hope-change-zombification. What is ignored, of course, is that we and the other three great nations all cut our taxes, cut our spending, made life easy for small business... in other words: the exact opposite of the Anglo-Sphere.

That brings us to Cap and Trade. Never in the history of humanity has a more idiotic plan been put forward and sold with bigger lies... Never in history, with the exception of the Japanese self-imposed isolation in the 1600s, did a government actively force its people away from economic activity and industry. Even the Soviets never created such idiocy...

So one must ask, are the powers that be in Washington and London degenerates or satanically evil? Where is the opposition? Where are the Republicans in America and Tories in England?

---

Answer: outvoted.
read the rest

scary, fashion edition

"that's a pretty hat you made there lauren. i'm glad you made it." 8^D

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Friday, October 23, 2009

subliminal message

I just got an ad from my phone/tv/isp company trying to sell me "premium" tv channels. Two of the images are captioned:
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm on HBO
  • Bored To Death on HBO
Check, and check. I have no enthusiasm for HBO, and would likely be bored to death if I watched it. ;)

...and I bet those were written by the same guy who named Depeche Mode's hit single "It's No Good".

oops

I should'a bought stock in Acme Strawmen & Tailspin...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

thursday already?

this was a rollercoaster week - ups, downs, and way too fast. i'm not gone, will try to post more later.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

credit

now i know
(people) can't live and spend like teenagers on spring break with their parents' gold credit card – and neither can their government.

Boy in the Balloon

or, Lead Zeppelin '09

(see also this definition)

God and Scientism

Viewpoint:
There's nothing that's been discovered by scientists which does anything to cast doubt on the existence of God and much that has been discovered which affirms it... Indeed, the more we learn about the human body the more easily one draws the conclusion that it's the product of intentional engineering. The more we learn about the origin of life the more we realize how implausible it is that blind, purposeless forces could have brought it about. The more we learn about the origin the universe and its origin the more compelling does Genesis 1:1 sound.

There is no conflict whatsoever between science and God. How could there be? The conflict we see today is between naturalism (the view that physical nature is all there is) and theism. There is nothing about science that requires its practioners to embrace naturalism. Those who do, do so because they simply don't want the universe to be the kind of place where a God might intervene.
read the rest

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

lost in translation?

in venezuela, how do you say "dude that's harsh!"

Monday, October 12, 2009

off topic

snide remark of the 90s: "remember back when mtv played music videos?"

snide remark of the 00s: "remember back when weather channel reported weather?"

Thursday, October 08, 2009

payola

TLMC reports:
WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)-- The FTC is taking a tougher line on bloggers who accept cash or gifts to tout a company's products or services.

Under revised rules announced Monday, the Federal Trade Commission's 'new ruling'will require bloggers and celebrities to clearly state when they receive cash or "payment in kind" for endorsing a company's products or services.

The changes, adopted on a 4-0 vote, are the first revisions to federal guidelines on endorsements and testimonial advertising since 1980 and the first to target bloggers.
Connections between advertisers and endorsers must be disclosed once the revised guidelines take effect on Dec. 1. The FTC said the stricter disclosure requirement will apply to comments on talk shows, blog posts and on social media as well as in traditional advertisements.

Advertisers and endorsers who fail to disclose material connections, or who make false, misleading or unsubstantiated claims may be subject to fines of $11,000 per violation. The FTC didn't set a specific dollar threshold; instead, it called for disclosure whenever a reward is large enough that it might affect the credibility of the endorsement itself.
If this law requires corrupt politicians (of any party) to reveal the sources of payola they get from lobbyists, including the cash value of the free propaganda they receive from the info-tainment industry, then I'm for it.

Otherwise it's a crock.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

speaking of terse

I just received a scam spam; the entire body text of which is as follows:
"I need a confirmation of acceptance to transfer of US$ 21.3 million dollars to you."
Dear Mr. H.C.T. of (large bank) China, please consider this post as my confirmation of acceptance.

let's start with the conclusion

NOFP:
"With its resounding, open, and near unequivocal defense of Polanski, Hollywood and the Left, both American and European, show the true depth of their moral depravity, where they defend and provide open support for a blatant pedophile and fugitive. Together with the ACORN embarrassment and media cover-up, there seems to be no limit to the profound lawlessness and practical indifference of progressives. And no end to the willingness of feminists to barter their principles for "beautiful people" or Democrat politics."

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

unfortunate

i ate chinese food a week ago, and got a fortune cookie that said "glamour will surround the events of your week."

two days later i got the flu.

tonight i got a fortune cookie that said "a tantalizing opportunity will present itself this week."

any idea what disease i should expect?

;)

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

bragging on the nieces

i visited my family this weekend, including my two nieces, ages nearly 7 and nearly 4.

as we sat down at the restaurant, both of them opened up cell phones and started pressing buttons. i figured they were just playing on old phones, but my sister said they both have already learned how to text message... !?!

after the older one told me she was texting a friend from school, the younger one said "i'm texting too!", to which the older one said "but mine make sense!"

:D

Thursday, September 24, 2009

a week of firsts

pop quiz: each of the following statements contains elements of both truth and untruth. each event was a first, please guess in comments how the rest of each statement varies from the truth.
  1. i sat in the second row behind the rangers' dugout for the first time at friday's game
  2. i heard "bela lugosi's dead" and "warm leatherette" in their entirety for the first time
  3. i was nominated for a grammy award for the first time
  4. i ate at dixie house cafe on wednesday night for the first time
answers & explanations here next week sometime after everybody's had a chance to guess.

---

update: with a score of... um, something... local malcontent wins!
  1. i sat in the second row behind the rangers' dugout for the first time at saturday's game
  2. i heard "bela lugosi's dead" and "warm leatherette" for the first time, but disliked them so much i stopped listening
  3. i was nominated for a local emmy award for the first time (as part of a team at work)
  4. i ate at dixie house cafe on thursday night for the first time (until this month, they only served breakfast & lunch, not supper.)
#2 was the only unenjoyable item on the list, though it is somewhat reassuring that i no longer like a lot of that morbid kind of music.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

the reclamation of independence

read it. live it.

count me among the "smattering"

If this isn't "the" mark of the beast, it's definitely a practice run:
An implantable chip could allow you to charge purchases or even start your car. It'd be convenient, to be sure. But would it be too creepy?

It's a simple concept, really: You inject a miniature radio frequency identifier the size of a grain of rice between your thumb and forefinger and, with a wave of your hand, unlock doors, turn on lights, start your car...

The problem is, the whole concept is a little geeky for most of us, nauseating for some, Orwellian for a few and even apocalyptic for a smattering of religious fundamentalists.
It's not worth risking the "blue screen of death", even if it uses 666-bit encryption...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

mixed reaction

Obama on missile defense:
President Barack Obama on Thursday shelved a Bush-era plan for an Eastern European missile defense shield that has been a major irritant in relations with Russia. He said a redesigned defensive system would be cheaper and more effective against the threat from Iranian missiles.

"Our new missile defense architecture in Europe will provide stronger, smarter and swifter defenses of American forces and America's allies," Obama said in an announcement from the White House.

Anticipating criticism from the right that he was weakening America's security, Obama said repeatedly that this decision would provide more — not less — protection.

"It is more comprehensive than the previous program, it deploys capabilities that are proven and cost effective, and it sustains and builds upon our commitment to protect the U.S. homeland," he said....

The new plan would rely sea and land-based sensors and interceptor missiles intended as a bulwark against Iranian short- and medium-range missiles.

(this) alternate plan would deploy Aegis ships armed with interceptors, giving the military the ability to move the system around.

Another key to the near-term network would be new, more mobile radar used to detect and track short- and medium-range missiles if they were launched from Iran.
In the unlikely event that Obama's statements that "stronger, smarter and swifter defenses of American forces and America's allies" are correct, I'll agree with him.

I definitely agree with Eric Cantor's statement that:
"Our allies, especially Poland and the Czech Republic, deserve better and our people deserve smarter and safer."
And I care not one iota about Medvedev's concern "that the system would undermine the nuclear deterrent of (Russia's) vast arsenal."

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

child safety hints

My list of helpful telemarketing hints from five years ago keeps getting hits via google and other search engines. In that spirit of public service, here are some new hints, designed to help today's moms on-the-go.
1) When seated in your vehicle, you may notice that there are several large pieces of glass all around you. These are designed to afford clear visibility to the outside world. When traveling, please use these "windows" to observe the actions and reactions happening all around you.

2) Through all of your vehicle's windows, you might observe other vehicles which appear to be growing larger. You need not be frightened, this is merely a useful illusion, one that indicates you should not get much closer. The speed of this illusion will indicate its importance. Also, it is certainly not safe for your vehicle to move in perpendicular or opposite directions to those other cars at the same time.

3) If you happen to hear a loud sound (such as a "honk"), that is often an indication that a nearby driver thinks that you should get out of his or her way. If it is safe, you should try to get out of his or her way, no matter whether you think the other driver's opinion is justified or not.

4) Please do not be confused by the varied and numerous lights around you; they are designed to help you and your precious cargo travel in safety.

4a) Through the front window, you might observe red lights, either on vehicles or on poles of various design. Please interpret these lights as indications that you need to bring your vehicle to a stop, not as indications of sale specials of limited duration.

4b) Also through the front window, you might observe green lights on poles. These lights generally indicate that it is safe for you to proceed in your travels; please do so in a timely fashion, so that others may enjoy proceeding in theirs.

4c) If you are observant, you will see many other varieties of lights and signs as you travel. Please familiarize yourself with the meanings of these lights and signs, and how to discern which ones represent laws to be obeyed. There are many resources that can help you learn, such as libraries, police and highway departments, and reputable websites. If you refuse to learn, there will be a pop quiz administered by local officers - an expensive quiz that you will fail miserably.

5) Family communication is important, but it is much less important than keeping your children safe. Please refrain from using your cellphone while driving. You might be surprised how difficult it is to communicate over the wail of sirens, or while breathing through a tube.

6) When an event occurs in the back seat which requires your immediate attention, please bring your vehicle to a safe and complete stop out of traffic before attending to that event. If your vehicle continues moving without your full attention, you will soon find your daily routine impacted by unwanted outside events.
(This message inspired by the League of Hurried Shoppers of Southwest Tarrant County.)

don't b flat

just surfing around, i found a quote here*, which accurately describes my opinion of typical american-idol-style singing:
"They (sound awful because they) try to muscle their way through singing as if they were power lifting at the gym!"
(* not an endorsement of the site, just that opinion.)

muslim call to prayer

A passage from either 1 Kings or 2 weeks in the future...

(comments in italics, graphic links are - graphic)
(The false prophets...) called on the name of Baal (Allah) from morning until noon saying, "O Baal (Allah), answer us." But there was no voice and no one answered. And they leaped about the altar which they made.

It came about at noon, that Elijah mocked them and said, "Call out with a loud voice, for he is a god; either he is occupied or gone aside, or is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep and needs to be awakened."

So they cried with a loud voice and cut themselves according to their custom with swords and lances until the blood gushed out on them.

When midday was past, they raved until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice; but there was no voice, no one answered, and no one paid attention.

...and a little acorn shall lead them

over the cliff, hopefully...

lies of omission

Did you hear the news of that huge march on Washington?!?!
Why doesn't the Times want you to know the size of the biggest rally opposing the federal government ever? At One Million, was it bigger than Vietnam protest? (The Democrats war?) Bigger than Martin Luther King's "I Have A Dream Speech? Bigger than the so-called million-man march?

The more the White House and the New York Times try to ignore the protests - the louder they will be.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Monday, September 07, 2009

extry extry!

read all about it! Biblical Headlines Written by Today's Media!

The first one is about the crossing of the Red Sea:
WETLANDS TRAMPLED IN LABOR STRIKE
Pursuing Environmentalists Killed
...and they get better, as do the cartoons

Friday, September 04, 2009

re: You Might Be a Lunatic If...

snadrs mentioned a post to me, entitled You Might Be a Lunatic If..., by Megan McArdle, who received an email that reminded her...
of a lengthy email dispute I had with a liberal commenter/emailer a few years back. After some initial heat, he (she?) calmed down, and we had a fairly reasonable discussion of his/her fears problems with the Bush administration, some of which I shared.

But then my correspondent mentioned that they thought it was reasonably likely that there would be no election in 2008. Not certain, but enough that we should be preparing for it. I think at one point they called it more likely than not.

At this point, I was at a loss. What does one say in the face of an entirely sincere belief that an American system of government that revolted when FDR tried to pack the Supreme Court would, suddenly and for no apparent reason, allow George Bush to cancel elections and appoint himself dictator for life? I mean, other than, "You are a lunatic. An apparently nice and well meaning lunatic. But nonetheless. A barking moonbat."

So I'm kind of dizzy with deja vu when I read this sort of prime-aged poppycock coming from the right of me. When you hear that "some people fear" that an utterly anodyne bill creating emergency response centers "could be used as "concentration camps for political dissidents, such as occurred in Nazi Germany", the correct response is not to repeat that remark, except to make fun of it...

...these things can creep up on you. There was a time when people did not understand the threat that Hitler posed...

...There will be plenty of time, should such camps be proposed, to leap into action and unleash the mighty force of your righteous opposition on the hapless would-be dictator. Premature anti-fascism just makes you history's clown.
I understand the point that none of us should be "the boy who cried hyperbole", and that all citizens should try to rationally discuss political issues, rather than just shout slogans past each other. But I think we should be able to state that our current administration belives strongly in silencing dissidents with whatever means they have available, and - like all bullies - will only be emboldened by any silence of their opponents.

I would also ask Ms. McArdle to please name the specific date, sometime between "plenty of time" and "these things can creep up on you", when it stopped being appropriate to appease Hitler and start opposing him? Would it have been before or after Chamberlain gave his "peace for our time" speech?

And if "premature anti-fascism just makes you history's clown", anti-fascism delayed just makes you the victim of tyrants. There is no bad time to be anti-fascist.