Saturday, August 11, 2012

Real Clear Science: Rachel Maddow's Misleading Report on Fracking

Alex Berezow  via Ace of Spades blog

  • what transpired was an unscientific, selective reporting of the facts
  • Three Mile Island was indeed scary...but ...the natural background radiation posed a bigger threat to the residents than the small amount of radioactive gas that was purposefully vented following the meltdown. Did Maddow remind her viewers of that fact? No.
  • She then proceeded to show the now infamous footage of some guy in Colorado lighting his tap water on fire...Did she mention the University of Texas study which concluded that methane in water wells was probably natural and likely was present in the water prior to shale gas operations? No.
  • Maddow then got to the main point of the segment: that fracking causes earthquakes....But a paper published in PNAS, also from the University of Texas, provided more information. Did fracking cause earthquakes? Yes, probably small ones...But, many injection wells (where waste water was injected) did not have any earthquakes at all. The author hypothesizes that earthquakes can only occur if there is a suitable fault nearby. Did Maddow report that? No, of course not.
No mention of molten salt reactors and how these can reduce the risks of water-cooled solid-fueled reactors.

Even if you think the current technology is unsafe, you have to admit that this is an improvement.  Why not consider that?

Rush Limbaugh may think that this is accepting the premise that nuclear technology isn't safe.  But no matter what you do, you are going to get people who are afraid of it because they don't understand it.  Then you run the risk that an accident will occur and then you will have a public relations disaster on your hands.  It will only confirm what the fear mongers have been pushing all along.

Why not remove that as a possibility and upgrade the reactors to molten-salt reactors?

It's kinda dumb not to.

We have no King but Caesar

From Barnhardt's site:

That's not exactly what the YouTube title was, but then you'd have thought I was prosletyzing.

Not exactly.

There's plenty in that video for non-Catholics to appreciate.

But I suspect that many people have been deceived and will not listen. That, in a nutshell, is a large part of the problem.

Ideology is making people stupid.

An alternative history of the Republic of Texas

Speculation alert.

As a native of Texas, one is required to learn about her history.  At least, this was true while I was still in school.  Maybe not so true today.  Despite this, there is a lot to learn and there are a few things that I missed.  For example, I thought it was Sam Houston who kept Santa Ana alive after San Jacinto.  But, actually, the interim President of the Republic, David G Burnet, may have been more responsible.

The significance of Santa Ana alive cannot be underestimated.  It turned out to be a great boon to Texas and to the United States, and a great misfortune for the people of Mexico.

Burnet negotiated the Treaty of Velasco with Santa Ana, in which the dictator promised to recognize Texas independence.  Amongst its provisions was the one in which promised the safe return of the dictator to Mexico.  This was quite unpopular amongst the Texans, who wanted Santa Ana to be executed for his brutality in the recent war.  As a result of this opposition, Santa Ana wasn't returned to his country directly, but eventually that part of the treaty was honored.  Good for Texas, not so good for Mexico.  If Santa Ana was executed, there would be nobody to order the Mexican troops to leave Texas.  There were a lot more Mexican troops than Texans at that point.  Texas was not safe yet.

With the safety of Santa Ana came the safety of Texas.  With the return of Santa Ana to Mexico came the same incompetence that lost Texas in the first place.  When Santa Ana returned, he only made things worse for Mexico.  In 1842, he ordered a military expedition to Texas.  This rather foolish expedition only made the loss of Texas to the United States inevitable.  For the people of Texas were given a choice at the time of annexation to the United States.  This option was negotiated at the last minute in order to prevent the annexation, but with Mexican depredations such as this one, the attempt to influence events were futile.

Now David G Burnet was part of that faction that favored a Texan Republic.  What could Santa Ana have done instead?  He could have honored that part of the treaty which proposed friendship between the countries.  That would have strengthened the hand of Burnet and his allies, and weakened the hand of annexation, which was being led by Sam Houston.  If Santa Ana had only honored his own treaty, he may have put together the political will to establish a buffer republic against the expansionist United States.  Moreover, the United States itself was divided over the issue of slavery.  It may have remained so indefinitely if Texas hadn't been admitted to the Union.

The admission of Texas and the resulting war with Mexico left a problem with how to administer the new lands thus acquired.  It exacerbated the sectional controversy, as the South demanded an equal share of the  booty won from Mexico.  The sectional controversy led to the Civil War.  But what if Texas had not ever entered the Union?  The two sections may have kept an uneasy truce between each other indefinitely.  Instead, the war ended the sectional controversy and united the country, which became the most powerful country on earth.  All of this may not have happened if things had gone just a little bit differently.

Moral of the story:  Leadership is everything to the nation.  A nation is born or suffers according to the quality of its leadership.

Rush: Where are the Pro-Obama Callers?

Rush Limbaugh Show

Because of my job, I can't listen to all of the show.  I have to get into and out of my truck and make my deliveries.  On the way between places, I can listen to the show.  I heard this call, or maybe parts of it, and I was inclined to be critical of Rush.

But wait.  I want to be accurate, so I go back and read the transcripts of the show on the site, and guess what?  Rush is right.  But I still have a few quibbles.

This may be a complex post, so hang with me on this.

The main quibble is about ideology.  I have posted many times here that I think that ideology can make you stupid.  I have also stated that I don't think Ronald Reagan trusted ideology.  Rush idolizes Reagan.  But he is missing something that I think is quite significant and important.  Reagan never identified himself as a rightist.  Rush does.  That's the difference.

Conservatism does not necessarily equate with rightism.  Rightism is a part of the communist paradigm.  If you identify with that, you are identifying with that ideology.  Supposedly, you are opposed to it, but in reality, you are identifying with it.  And that is a big mistake.  Reagan never made that mistake.

Rush is right to go after Obama on ideology.  But he is wrong to identify conservatism with rightism.

I see the problem as big government statism.  I'd say the vast majority of Americans, including Democrats, are capitalists.  So, you have to make some distinctions.  Not all of the Democrats are socialists.  A certain percentage them are, but not all of them.  It may not even be the majority of Democrats who are socialists.  I think a lot of them are just there to collect the benefits of big government statism.  But I don't think they necessarily agree with the ideology of socialism.  That's why Reagan could get Democrat support, by the way.  There are those on the left who claimed Reagan was a statist, but I think that is just smoke being blown into your eyes.  The left needs to hide, and they do it with their lies.

So, Rush is right to go after Obama on his socialism.  But wrong to identify himself as a rightist.  And wrong to identify all Democrats as socialists, if he's doing that.

He'd be better off not dissing moderates too.

Our main problem now is with the big government statism.  The government is getting too big and out of control.  It needs to be downsized.  The private markets have not failed.  No.  The market has been burdened with too much government interference.

Obama has not cured what was ailing General Motors.  If he had, they could get out of the auto business.  But the government still owns the stock.  The government had a hand in the failure of the auto business.  It supported the labor unions who made the company uncompetitive.  He has done nothing to solve that problem.  Instead, he has come in and taken over a business and eventually it will be considered a government enterprise.  They may have begun this with the claim that the stock will eventually be sold, but since it isn't being sold, it is still government owned.  It will become permanent.  Therefore, the company is not private anymore.  That is the very definition of socialism.  But it all started out as a big government statist operation.  It morphed into socialism.

The big government statists are making more and more constituencies like this one.  But as they do, they are opening the door to the socialists, like Obama.

The more food stamps and welfare statist like policies are created, the more big government statist constituencies you will have under their control and voting for them.  This is an example of a plan.  This is an example of a system for expanding power and control.  Once it reaches the majority, it will be impossible to stop them in a democratic fashion.  After that, it is either rebellion or submission.  After that, it will be too late for reason and compromise.  Even if you are a Democrat, but not a socialist, you will have to submit to the socialists.  Something for you to think about, I should think.

The Tea Party just wants the government to obey the Constitution and the rule of law.  If the Tea Party did not stand for this, I would not be in favor of them.  I wouldn't want to wager their chance of ultimate success, though.  There are those who think that the country is too far gone for them to make a difference.  For me, it is too hard to say just yet, but there are some encouraging signs.  But some discouraging signs too.  California just keeps voting Democrat in spite of their troubles.  That's the kind of thing that can happen to the rest of  this country.  We may have passed the tipping point.  The big government statists may be too big now and may not be stoppable.  We'll have to see.

No, my problem with Rush isn't fundamental.  It is a small quibble, but an important one.  You can't play their game. You can't rely upon big government statism on your own side to offset theirs.  You have to stand apart from the big government statism.  And that big government mindset exists on the Republican side as well.

On the Republican side, you've got big military contracts.  These gold plated weapon systems should be carefully examined.  My worry is that they are too big of a target and may not be survivable in a big war.  If these weapon systems don't survive, we'll be in big trouble.  I'm all for systems that will work.  But when you are dealing with big government statism, what you end up with may be something that benefits a small minority, but may not work, and won't benefit the country as a whole.  It's the same principle that exists on the left with their buying of constituencies--like GM.  In that case, it will fail us as the big government statists have failed us on the left.  We should prioritize our spending on the things that are really important.  An example? I'd say missile defense, for one.  Some tin pot dictators with a nuclear version of a Saturday night special may be able to get the drop on us.  That should never be allowed to happen.

We may have only one more chance to get this right with this election.  My quibbles with Rush may seem too fine of a point, but we can't afford many mistakes.  Our margin of error may be really small.  We may have to be perfect to succeed.  It may be that close.  The stakes are too high to take a chance that it may not be.

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) - Trailer HD

There was a newer version of this flick, but this one is probably much better.

The main thing to remember about that flick is that the nightmare never ends. Sort of like Obama's presidency. A nightmare that never ends.

See, two can play that game.


Here's a good line for Republicans to remember if they want to beat "Freddy" and get over this nightmare.

Fat Bastard

Dr. Evil introduces an evil villain accomplice in the Austin Powers flick, The Spy That Shagged Me.

Listening to the Obamabots, Romney is Fat Bastard.

I'm pretty sure Romney won't eat anybody's baby.  He's definitely not fat.

Flying With Milton Friedman Is a Trip Unto Itself

Caroline Baum, Bloomberg

  • Rereading “Capitalism and Freedom” after a hiatus of at least 15 years reminded me just how relevant Friedman is.
  • Friedman took issue with Keynesian orthodoxy, as well. The idea that a dollar taken from the private sector and spent by the government is expansionary defies logic and is inconsistent with empirical evidence, he said
  • Income inequality may well be a problem for society, but taking more from the rich doesn’t elevate the poor and middle class. Friedman had answers for equalizing opportunity, starting with school choice: putting education options in the hands of parents and making schools compete for students.[ emphasis added and comment:  Friedman wasn't just giving economic theory, he had real world solutions that will work.  But not if they aren't tried.]
  • Friedman said government mismanagement turned what would have been a modest contraction into the Great Depression.[comment:  Government mismanagement turned a small problem of a crisis in the financial market in 2008 into the big problem of the Great Recession.  We can't get out of this until the thinking changes.]
Whatever you do, don't forget what brought success before, and could bring it again.  Don't forget the '80's.

False ads and how to respond to them

The posts are getting more political.  The contest is heating up.

Yesterday, Limbaugh talked about the false ads.  Well, false ads are just politics.  It may be useful, and perhaps best for one's own peace of mind, to step back a little from all of this political stuff.  But the hotter this stuff gets, the harder that is to do.

The accusation of dishonesty gets made a little too often.  That Obama ad though, was pretty rotten.

Limbaugh wanted to find something in the past that compared to this ad.  He mentions the Lyndon Johnson's daisy girl ad against Goldwater as a possibility.  Actually, that may not be a good example.  Here's why I think so.  Essentially, the daisy girl ad was about an opinion that Goldwater was dangerous.  An opinion may be incorrect, but it can't be dishonest.  Opinions aren't facts in and of themselves.  There may be some facts mixed in, but they aren't factual in and of themselves.  On the other hand, the Obama ad starts with opinion that Romney is a bad guy, and then attempts to support that accusation with a lot of falsehoods.  There's not much of a comparison.

Maybe Limbaugh should have said that this ad is unprecedented in its mendacity.  That may be enough to describe it.  There's probably nothing quite like this ad in its rottenness.

It's that kind of stuff that gets the opposition fired up.  Not the smartest thing to do than to put out some locker room bulletin board material to get the other guys fired up.

The Chick-Fil-A video is another example.  Here I was, just writing stuff about how to work together to bridge the political gap, and along comes this video.  Now, I'm getting sucked in, and it is all about politics.  Too easy to get sucked into this stuff.

Another thing Limbaugh talked about is the Obama campaign's response to that anti-Romney ad.  There was this sound bite of an interview, and the Obama spokeman just wouldn't own up to the dishonesty.  Then I got the thought.  This reminded me of something humorous, like in the movie,  The Blues Brothers, where Elwood told his brother Jake a lie about the band getting back together.  Jake accuses him of lying, but Elwood wouldn't admit that it was a lie.  He claims that he was just "bullshitting".   So that Obama spokesman isn't lying, he's just bullshitting.  That thought struck me as funny.  Yeah, it may help to have a sense of humor to get through all of this dreary stuff.

Perhaps it is enough to say that Obama wants to bullshit his way into another term, and leave it at that.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Munchin' Lunch at Chick-fil-A: Same-Sex Smoochin' Hits Chicken Chain

I found this even though I wasn't looking for it. Very interesting.

He found some people to have a civil conversation about the subject, but others not so much.

Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein - "Who's Brain Was it?"

Uploaded by backyardsounds on Nov 26, 2011

The rotten one.

Ixnay on the otten ray!

Obama campaign aide accused of lying over anti-Romney ad, ties to steelworker

foxnews via Free Republic

  • A top Obama campaign official ...Deputy Campaign Manager Stephanie Cutter ...said she didn't know when Soptic's wife fell ill, or about his health insurance.
  • Yet in May of this year, Cutter herself hosted a conference call in which Soptic detailed his case to reporters
  • Cutter wasn't the only Obama campaign official caught up in the controversy.
  • The ad did not reveal key details about the timeline of Soptic's case. First, Soptic's wife initially had her own health insurance after her husband lost his job. Second, Soptic's wife died in 2006, five years after her husband's company, GST, filed for bankruptcy. And long after Romney had left Bain Capital.
Rotten, just flat out rotten.  That's your government, folks.



How lies become conventional wisdom.

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

Milton Friedman - The Free Lunch Myth

Uploaded by LibertyPen on Apr 2, 2010

via Free Republic

The coming election has been compared to 1980.  Unfortunately, there's no Reagan and no Milton Friedman this time around.  We do have the memories of them and that may be enough as long as we don't forget.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Never mind

Wait a Minute: Joe Soptic's Wife Wasn't Even Diagnosed With Cancer Until 2006?

Is the argument made that Romney owed this guy another seven years worth of insurance coverage?

Special report: Romney's steel skeleton in the Bain closet

This is a follow-up on the previous post about the Obama ad.  Here's a link to a Reuters story that was of interest to me because it gives some background info about why the plant closed down.

It is not a simple story.  You may read it and come to your own conclusion.

My own comment is that businesses are in business to make money, not to provide jobs and benefits.  The jobs and benefits result from a successful business.  The business in question was in trouble and came to Bain because of its reputation for turnarounds.  This turnaround attempt failed.  They why part is not so easy to figure because it is not some cut-and-dried explanation.

In the end, it all boils down to making money.  The company couldn't make it and it failed.  There are those who say that the company would have stayed in business if it weren't for Bain.  But a lot of companies like this one failed at that time.  If the company was not in trouble, Bain wouldn't have been called in.

Bain made money off this deal.  The company in question went out of business despite Bain's efforts.  That's the bottom line for some people.  The sentiment seems to be that Bain should not prosper if the company they are trying to turn around doesn't.  The accusation was that Bain did more harm than good in its efforts to turn the company around.  That may be true, but the likelihood is that it isn't given what was happening in the larger scene.

The amount of money Bain got out of this deal probably wouldn't have saved the company.  Their problems were too big.  Even if Bain worked for free, it probably wouldn't have mattered.  That's my opinion.


A little more thought on the matter leads me to think that the real complaint should against the owners who brought Bain in on those terms ( and probably on the unions, but that is a given).  Bain didn't have the incentive to save the company since they could make money in any case.  Bain may not have worked on the deal without any guarantee of making a profit.  What I'm saying is that some kind of agreement could have been pursued that wouldn't have paid  Bain unless they were successful in the turnaround.  The steel company negotiated a bad deal, don't blame Bain for negotiating a good deal for themselves.  But the steel company may have been desperate, so they signed off on a bad deal.  It was that or go out of business, probably.

People are mad about Bain's success.  It doesn't do anything to solve any problems.  Even if Bain wasn't involved, they would have still gone out of business.  Those who claim otherwise are not facing the facts.  Bain wouldn't have been called in if the company wasn't already in trouble.

Someone would probably accuse me of being anti-union.  Like I said, a business is in business to make money.  If the union can't help the business make money, the union dies with the company.  Their main job is to see to it that the company survives, because if it doesn't, their jobs don't survive either.  How did the unions help the company survive?  It is probably the other way around.

Romney gave away his inheritance

Somebody said that he thought it was common knowledge, but I didn't know it.  Actually, the New York Times confirms it, so even the far left rag admits it's true.  But it is interesting to read this and see that the Times still doesn't want to admit it fully, but admit it they did.

Look at the opening paragraphs:
Mitt Romney said during Thursday night’s debate that he did not inherit any money from his parents....This is not entirely accurate

And then, later in the post...
Even so, Mr. Romney benefited from his father’s wealth in another way: he relied on George Romney for a loan that he used to buy his first home, in Belmont, Mass., for $42,000.

So, they didn't refute it in any way.  No inheritance money, just a loan to buy a house.  Not the same thing.  A loan is not an inheritance.

Just goes to show you that not everything gets out even if you think that it does.  Explanation for me, not a Romney supporter.  I'm more anti-Obama than pro-Romney.  Perhaps this didn't matter to me, so I wasn't paying attention.

Romney is supposed to be unlikable.  This part doesn't have to be one of the reasons why.  He gave away his inheritance and he tithes to his church.  He is not a cheapskate.  He is actually generous.  He needs to put this out loud and clear.  It may make some difference in his likability scores.

Also, there could be some comparisons made with Obama, like how much does Obama give away?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The whining has to stop

A couple things from the Limbaugh show today. They pretty much fall into the same category-- there's way too much whining going on.

One is about the media. Yes, they are biased. Everybody knows they are biased. But it doesn't make much difference that they are biased. Therefore, harping on their bias won't change anything.

I think you'll have to figure out a way to go after the dems. It is a game after all. Figure out how to win the media game. Stop whining about how unfair it all is.

In particular, Rush was asking how can you talk to a guy who accuses Romney of killing his wife, or some other type accusation. You'll have to engage someone like that on the level that they are on. That's the way I figure it. Something like this is political, if it were serious, they'd be talking about a court case. It would be murder or a civil suit. Since it isn't serious, they are just blowing political smoke. Find a way to say that and make it stick. If you've got the facts on your side, you should be able to do that.

Otherwise, it just sounds like whining.

After writing the above, I watched the video ad.  It does look like the guy is accusing Romney of what happened to his wife.  That is over the top.  The part about Romney making millions and then closing the plant does look bad, however.  There has to be an explanation for that, or it does look bad.  There's no getting around that.

There are two sides to every story.  The one that the ad is telling makes Romney look pretty bad, but there's another side.  If there isn't, he can't win on a subject like this.

The ad also says that he got a job for half his previous pay.  Question:  if he made only half what he made and was able to keep the steel job, would that have been good enough to keep his insurance?  Just saying, if the steel plant closed because they couldn't pay the wages and benefits, what was done by all parties that would have tried to make that work?  Anything?  Were the unions the obstacle in getting a deal that would have worked businesswise?  Maybe that is why the plant closed.  You don't know why the plant was closed based upon this ad.

Pardon the bad writing.  I'm pressed for time.


This is the best I could find on short notice. You know the meaning of the phrase. Somebody cuts one and wants to divert attention and blame from himself, so he accuses somebody else of doing what he just did himself. That's what this Obammy's insistence upon Romney's tax returns is all about, according to the previous post.

Obama’s College Classmate: ‘The Obama Scandal Is at Columbia’

Another great post at Free Republic.

Obama won't release his college transcripts because he was a foreign exchange student, according to this theory.  That would sink his candidacy, if it were to be true.

Of course, if Romney wasn't serious about winning, he would ignore this strategy.

In one of my book reviews, the subject of fraud came up.  I would think the deliberate and knowing concealment of factual information relating to one's eligibility for the office of the presidency has the potential of a federal fraud case.  It is absolutely necessary for this information to be released in order to determine if legally, Obama can be president.  The same may be true for Romney and his tax records.  Otherwise, the entire election could be fraudulent.

James Holmes' Psychiatrist Contacted University Police Weeks Before Movie-Theater Shooting

Great stuff on Free Republic.  Unfortunately, too many people out there don't see the value in it.

The comments are great too.  If I may add something here, off that post, I'd mention that information about the 911 attackers was known in advance of the attacks as well.

Just the overall impression here that the system isn't working like it should.

Why not?

The most common response from the knee-jerkers was gun control.  But a simpler way to solve the problem may have involved nothing more than being more alert to the potential threat.

Yeah, if a known looney-tune comes to a movie in a strange-looking outfit, gets up in the middle of the movie, exits the emergency exit--- a more alert security staff should have noticed something not being right.  If so, said security staff may have followed him to discover that he blocked open the exit door, which is supposed to be one-way.  Obviously, he did this for a reason, right?  To re-enter?  So, an alert security man would have followed him further to discover that he was getting all kinds of gear ready for an assault.  That discovery may have prevented the tragedy.

Just basic common-sense.  Only common-sense seems not to be in great supply amongst the knee-jerkers.

The Mighty Mississippi to Run Dry?


What is the single greatest reason America is so wealthy? According to the analysts at Stratfor, it is because of a river.

What is wealth?  It is a term that is not precisely defined.  Some may say it is the amount of money that you have stashed away in your bank account.  But if a catastrophe occurred, that money wouldn't mean much to you.  You can't eat it.  You can't build a house out of it.  It can't keep you warm in winter and cool in summer.  It is merely a medium of exchange.

Another way to define wealth is to say that it is a store of knowledge.  Without knowledge, where would you be?  Wealth has to begin with knowledge, I would think.

In my post about machines, I wondered if we have become too dependent upon them.  An individual's knowledge should include a basic ability to stay alive.  If one is too dependent upon machines, one's own life is hostage to the machine.  That could be said to be another form of poverty.

I'm all for raising the level of civilization.  But fundamental things should not be forgotten.

Just before my father died, he liked to talk about living off the land.  He knew how.  He was born and raised in the country.  But being a city boy all my life, I only know about living off the land- not actually doing it.  I wonder if all my knowledge gained from books in school is worth nearly as much as being able to survive off the land, as the old man said.

Colonizing space is just another way to survive.  But living off the land is where is all began.  Wealth cannot even have a meaning if you can't use it for survival.  You have to eat and have shelter and so forth.  You shouldn't die just because there's a drought.  Or any other force of nature, like an asteroid strike. You need to be able to survive, or your wealth means nothing.

A commenter on Free Republic included a link to the following video. I think it is appropriate to the post, so I'll include it here.  It's Hank Williams' A Country Boy Can Survive.


I guess the bottom line is this: if it can't keep you alive, it isn't worth much.  If you were to choose between alternatives, then the longer something can keep you alive, the more it is worth.

Wealth then is about value and how to properly evaluate it.

To forget useful skills do not make you richer, but poorer. To know how to make a fire could be a life saver. The electricity could be out. No matches could be available. No cigarette lighters to be found. You need a fire, what do you do if you don't know how? You may die.

Another thing to remember is that we almost allowed the knowledge of molten salt reactors to be forgotten.  Not good.  We may desperately need that energy some day.

Also, those in high places who think they are superior may be forgetting what the true value of religion is.  There was a reason for it to exist for all that time, mainly because it helped keep people alive.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Romney in a Landslide--utsandiego


The comments are more illustrative than the opinion.

Rather dreary.  How can people swallow all the propaganda coming from this outfit?  Improving economy?  Are you kidding?

Blame Bush?  Blame Republicans?

After 4 years of Carter, Reagan didn't need to blame anybody.  The results spoke for themselves.

To prove this isn't just partisanship, Clinton didn't need to blame his predecessor either.  Blaming the opposition in Congress doesn't fly.  Reagan and Clinton both worked with a Congress controlled by the opposition.  For Obama to blame his lack of success on the opposition shows his incompetence.  If he was really good, he would succeed in spite of the opposition.

Success works, failure fails.  Or it should.   The most dreary thing about this is that it's in California and you've got support for Obama there.  How?  Why?  It may take a cataclysmic failure to get some people to change, and even that may not make any difference.  Red states are economically outperforming the Blue.  But that doesn't change anything.  What will it take?  Anything?

Why D.C. Is Doing So Well


The other side of the argument from Laffer.
  • Washington may have the healthiest economy of any major metropolitan area in the country.
  • Some of the local prosperity, of course, is not worth celebrating. It stems from what economists call rent-seeking — tapping into the economic value created by someone else, rather than creating new value.[ Comment: Some?  What value does DC create?!]
  • Washington’s second lesson is arguably even more important. If you wanted to imagine what the economy might look like if the country were much better educated, you can look at Washington.[ comment: DC is living off the fat of the land.  Education has nothing to do with it.]
According to this guy, we need to spend far, far more money.  If we did this, we'd all get rich.

Arthur Laffer: The Real 'Stimulus' Record

wsj opinion

  • the debate rages between those who espouse stimulus spending as a remedy for our weak economy and those who argue it is the cause of our current malaise.  [ comment: I did a lot better during the Bush years than I'm doing now.  Time to change course.]
  • Obama's $860 billion stimulus plan that promised to deliver unemployment rates below 6% by now. Stimulus spending over the past five years totaled more than $4 trillion.
  • government taxing people more who work and then giving more money to people who don't work is a surefire recipe for less work, less output and more unemployment [ comment:  that's the goal, the mistake is to think otherwise]
  • But all of this is just old-timey price theory, the stuff that used to be taught in graduate economics departments.[ comment:  Ominous, if the "educated" believe in bunk, we are sunk.]
  • Mr. Obama keeps saying that if only Congress would pass his second stimulus plan, unemployment would finally start to fall. That's an expensive leap of faith with no evidence to confirm it.
We in deep doo doo keemosabe.

Economic Inequality is a Small Price to Pay for Staying Human

Economic Inequality is a Small Price to Pay for Staying Human

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Where is John Galt?

American Thinker

  • Then, as now, reviews from the liberal intelligentsia were, how you say, unfavorable. Gore Vidal described Atlas Shrugged as "nearly perfect in its immorality." The New York Times opined that the book was "written out of hate."
  • The reason why no one challenges the basic premise underlying Atlas Shrugged is because no one can. The impact on the modern life if the computer-makers stopped making computers, if every car-manufacturer stopped building cars, if doctors and nurses stopped caring for the sick, and so on is so obvious that it is hard to see how any person seriously could dispute it. 
  • What did John Galt convince Atlas Shrugged's fictional businessmen and industrialists to do that their real-life counterparts are not slowly, but inexorably, beginning to do voluntarily, without the need of a John Galt to talk them into it?
  • My John Galt would "recruit" the movers and shakers, the innovators and creators, and, authorized by them to speak for them, would give us fair warning today, before the damage is done, while there is still time to change course.
The left told him to shut up and he went Underground.

Whew! Mind-blowing stuff this is.

A bit of Yoda's Star Wars lingo this is.

I found something on Ann Barnhardt that just might send chills down your spine.

The military is "war-gaming" against a possible US Insurrection by the Tea Party.  Yes, you read that right.  The Tea Party.  Someone in Washington has gone bananas, no doubt about it.  A comment here:
I find this article disturbing on so many levels that I have to wonder that there are people in our society paid to sit around and write this nonsense. Not that there aren't domestic threats that may require a military response, but to single out the "Tea Party" and construct such a hysterical scenario prompts me to ask if you two should consider getting real jobs. If you had attended Tea Party meetings you would quickly a couple of important points: First, most Tea Party groups are organised by women who would never condone or countenace insurrection. Second: The avereage age of the Tea Party membership is probably north of sixty, the idea of such people unpacking their shotguns and taking over a town is so ridiculous as to be pythonesque.

More Chick-Fil-A anyone?  Go after the innocent in order to protect the guilty.  That's where the government is today.  War gaming against the Tea Party.  Go order your youngster in the military to shoot at some ladies and old guys.  Un-Freaking-Believable.

Hypocrisy on an epic scale

One of the Democrats favorite claims is that they are for the middle class, which presumes that the Republicans are against the same.  But talk is cheap.  When it comes to analyzing a situation, you need to be like old Sargent Friday on Dragnet--- just the facts ma'am.

So, I collected a few facts:
  1. Joel Kotkin: The Great California Exodus : The blue states are punishing and driving out the middle class. Where's all this concern about the middle class in these states?
  2. A thoughtful observation on the current political scene  Who votes Democrat?  Who are these people?
A third observation comes from North Dakota, which is a red state.  Where the Democrats and the anti-growth allies have not yet squashed the nascent oil industry there, the economy is booming.  The red states are doing better than the blue, and presumably so are the middle class residents of these states.  But the ones doing well in the blue states are the people who have managed to run things for the benefit of themselves-- not necessarily anybody else who may be in the middle class.

Of all the states, the one political entity (which is not a state) that has the highest GDP is Washington DC.  Nothing is produced in Washington but bureaucracy.  Their salaries and benefits come closer to be amongst the 1% than of the middle class.

Now, what was that again?

FLAMMA - Making fire with IKEA products

via Behind the Black

Making fire is hard work, as this video shows.  It reminded me of the hard work that one would have to do if you didn't have all these materials to work with and you had to do it on your own.  The movie Castaway, with Tom Hanks dramatized this. Hanks' celebration afterward is more entertaining, though.

Rubio Ethics Charges: Where There’s Smoke…There’s No Fire

Dick Morris

  • The phone lines around Romney Headquarters are buzzing with worried campaign operatives wondering if Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), the obvious front runner for vice president, should be dropped
  • So I looked into them and called the reporter who’s been covering them. Here’s the story:
  • He has been very close to two men who are in a lot of trouble, but there is no evidence that any of it has rubbed off on him.
  • The other issues that surround Rubio are also nickel and dime stuff:
  • It may be that these brush-fires lead the party honchos to run to the nearest boring white man [emphasis added, oh brother!!!]
Morris was doing pretty well up till the end.  Let's see.  You pick Rubio if you think he's the best choice to win.  That's the game.  Otherwise, you are playing their game, and they'll win.  But that last bit on race just about convinced me that we are already playing their game.  Either way you lose.  But if you have to win the bigger game, and Rubio is in the clear, you take Rubio if you want to win all the marbles.

Next Big Future: See-through-wall surveillance with WiFi

Next Big Future: See-through-wall surveillance with WiFi: Researchers from the University College London were able to design a radar that can reportedly identify frequency changes, thus enabling the...

Everything is a hustle, everything is a game.

That last post where Jay Cost examines the polls in the battleground states shows the status of the election game.

Obama is pouring in a lot of money into these states so that he can claim to be ahead where it really matters, in the electoral college.  But he is falling behind in the national polls.  But Obama is right, the national vote isn't what decides the election.   That reminder occurred in 2000, as you may recall.

The point is that it is a game, and the one who wins will be doing what it takes to win.  Is Romney paying attention to what he needs to be paying attention to?  Or is the national polling making him overconfident?

Most people are focusing in on the economy and jobs.  Obama claims jobs were created this past month and his economic policies are working.  Is there enough of a rebuttal out there to show that Obama is wrong?   I've seen some who are saying that this is just statistical noise.  So, I'll have a look at the numbers myself.

Here's the Household Report for June:

There are 195 thousand fewer people working in the past month, this is progress???
Obama is claiming progress off the establishment survey, which is seasonally adjusted.  Statistical noise.  Obama is trying to win with statistical noise and putting his money in the battleground states.  Plus he's getting a lot of help from the media.  The bottom line is that it is a hustle.  The people are being conned.

You may argue that Romney does it too.  Everybody does it.  But that is not the point here.  The point is that it is a game, and that you are required to play the game.  So, is Romney playing a winning game?

It doesn't matter who "should" win the game.  It matters more if you actually win the game.  Take the OJ Simpson case.  If justice prevailed, he would have been convicted.  In his book, Outrage, Vincent Bugliosi said it was a game, and the prosecution lost that game.  They lost it even when the overwhelming evidence pointed to Simpson's guilt.  So, the objective facts won't matter in "the game".  You have to win it, or justice won't prevail.

This game shouldn't even be a game, just like the Simpson case.  Romney shouldn't even have a contest here based upon performance.  But Obama is still in the game.  Why?  It must be because Romney isn't playing the game as well as he should.  Is Romney serious about winning this game?  Bugliosi didn't think the prosecutors were serious.  Maybe Romney isn't either.