A revealing retronym
The Gaia "consensus" continues to fall apart. Now the American Chemical Society is facing an internal revolt against a Carbon Cult editorial in its main journal.
contains an interesting retronym.
An outpouring of skeptical scientists who are members of the American Chemical Society (ACS) are revolting against the group’s editor-in-chief — with some demanding he be removed — after an editorial appeared claiming “the science of anthropogenic climate change is becoming increasingly well established.”
The editorial claimed the “consensus” view was growing “increasingly difficult to challenge, despite the efforts of diehard climate-change deniers.”
Note: "An outpouring of skeptical scientists
At one time in the distant past, the phrase skeptical scientists
would have been redundant, because Science was understood to be nothing more than formalized skepticism. If you weren't deeply skeptical about all arguments, you couldn't honestly call yourself a scientist. Now that the only "scientists" who matter are Carbon Cult fanatics, a skeptical scientist
is the exception, a strange type who needs to be singled out by an adjective before he's burned for heresy.
Thus Skeptical Scientist
is a retronym, like Classic Coke, Film Camera, Vinyl Record, Landline Phone, Traditional Marriage.
Retronyms pop up when the original item has been almost
totally replaced by the ersatz form, but they also tell you that the original item is still alive and kicking!
Tom Swift and his Electric Road
An Idaho inventor
has a federal grant to develop ... are you ready? ELECTRIC ROADS. He proposes to turn all the roads in America into drivable solar panels, tied together into a grid. This is unspeakably silly. You can immediately list dozens of intractable problems with the idea.
Needless to say, we don't need any new energy inventions, silly or serious. We just need to build 100 more nuclear plants. That's all.
I suspect the Feds are supporting this idea mainly to see if it leads to a spin-off. DOE isn't dumb enough to believe the Electric Road could be practical. If this yields a more durable solar panel design, or an advance in manufacturing photovoltaic cells, then it would be worth the money.
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Polistra decided to stroll down Electric Street to visit a neighbor.
"Ow! Ow! Ow! This is a criminal invention", she charged painfully.
Rush's voice remix
I tuned in Rush this morning for the first time since the election, only to find that he's doing some kind of adolescent pitch-changing crap to all Democrat voices. Apparently he's been doing this for a while now.
I enjoyed this sort of thing when I was about 7 years old: I used to take the center out of 45 RPM records and let them play all warpy, or play 33s at 78, or use my finger to turn the record backwards. Big fun. Make people sound weird. Stopped being funny when I was about 9.
Undoubtedly Rush will develop some fancy post-modern reason for this activity, involving irony and parody, but it only gives me an excellent reason to turn him off again and leave him off.
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Purely personal note: The blue 45 in this picture reminds me of why I disliked Rush in the first place, even though I ended up listening to him for a long time. My uncle was a DJ in Kansas City for many years. He knew I liked classical music, so he gave me a huge pile of classical 45s (including this unique translucent blue record of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue) when his station switched from part-classical to all-pop around 1959. In later years my uncle developed a format and an audience for local talk. Then in 1983 the managers abruptly fired him, deciding to gamble on a young firebrand from Cape Girardeau. You'd think the young firebrand would show some gratitude to the man who plowed the field for his crop, but no. Rush has often derided his KC predecessors, calling them losers.
Polistra collects self-explanatory sentences, which are a form of multi-word shibboleth. The analogy isn't precise because a shibboleth is a word or pronunciation used constantly
by one group who may be hard to recognize visually, while a SES is a sentence spoken only once that reveals an entire life.
True single-word shibboleths are fairly rare in modern America since TV tends to spread and slop words and phrases between groups and classes. Nevertheless, an "oldie and goodie" has popped up in one of Sailer's articles on Black Supremacist Gates.
It surprised me by its quaintness, yet it's still perfect for this situation because Black Supremacist Gates belongs to a quaint and powerful group.
Here's the context:
Obama’s feelings of class solidarity haven’t been widely discussed, largely because they are rather boring. In a world bedazzled by black entertainers and athletes, and troubled (but intrigued) by black criminals, the black upper class goes almost unnoticed as they engage in respectable rituals such as relaxing at Martha’s Vineyard, where “Skip” Gates has summered for 27 years and the Obamas will be vacationing next month.Summered.
There's a word that hasn't been smooshed around by TV. Anytime you hear a season used as a verb, you know you're dealing with a Northeastern Aristocrat of the highest caliber, a Lord of the Realm whose word is law.
And that's the real problem here. America has mixed the old British nobility with the Soviet nomenklatura
to produce an aristocracy of unique and venomous privilege, which we steadfastly refuse to name or acknowledge. You can't join the ruling class merely by becoming rich or powerful. You must
also belong to a Correct Lineage, which comprises exactly three categories: (1) The Kennedy family. (2) Homosexuals. (3) African blood. And you must
also adhere to the Party Line. The latter is critical. Powerful blacks like Clarence Thomas are not noble, and powerful homosexuals like Larry Craig are not noble.
We'd be a lot better off if we'd make these distinctions explicit and official by issuing visible Party identification to the аристоклатуры. Then police officers wouldn't mistakenly try to arrest a Lord Of The Realm, and parvenus like Rush wouldn't get the silly idea that they can play the game on the same level with Barney Frank.
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The most shameful and obnoxious part of this whole mess is the media, whose entire purpose in life is to enforce the Noble Exemption without ever stating it honestly. I hope and pray that Lucia Whalen
sues CNN for slander, libel and defamation, and I hope she bankrupts them. The other media still won't learn a lesson, but at least the harshest enforcer of Leninist orthodoxy would be out of business.
Fibber does Gates
Some commentators have been saying that the policeman's need for total dominance of the situation is a fairly new phenomenon. Hardly. And of course it's not a racial thing either, as Heather Mac Donald
has pointed out. It's just common sense, and always has been. Here's
a Fibber episode from 1939, where Fibber is caught acting like a burglar at his own house. Fibber gets in the cop's face, Gates-style, and the cop slaps him in jail. (The relevant action starts around 15 minutes into the clip.)
Note for idiots: Fibber McGee
is Irish, which is a variety of Caucasian. The cop is also Irish, which is still a variety of Caucasian, just as it was in the previous sentence. Nobody in the episode is anything other than Caucasian, and yet for some mysterious unfathomable reason the cop still arrests Fibber. Maybe it's because Fibber is behaving like a criminal? Nah, the cop must have somehow decided that Fibber had a tinge of African blood.
Nuff said. Or is that Puff said.....
Faced with total collapse, Scheissenesser finally came to his senses on the subject of energy and oil, but the legislature remained suicidal:
The assembly, by a 30-42 vote, cut the bill championed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger after the senate approved the full package by a 21-18 vote. Schwarzenegger and minority and majority leaders of the senate and assembly included it when they reached a tentative emergency budget agreement on July 20 for the legislature to consider.
It potentially would have provided $100 million initially and up to $2.3 billion of royalty payments from the 13-year lifespan of Plains Exploration & Production Co.’s proposed Tranquillon Ridge project. It also would have overturned the State Lands Commission decision in January to reject it, which opponents argued would have created a dangerous precedent.
The prissy elites always win in the end. Their peculiar desire to see a flat horizon from their billion-dollar beachfront property overrules all other considerations. We don't need no steenkin gas for our cars! We don't need no steenkin taxes to help our state survive! No, give me a flat horizon or give me death!
But only the male elites are prissy. Female elites are the other way around:
There was one near-constant in the budget talks: Dennis Hollingsworth was the first one into the governor's office and the last one out.
The Senate Republican leader from Murrieta forged a close alliance with Schwarzenegger; the pair were repeatedly spotted by staff and fellow lawmakers puffing on cigars in the governor's courtyard smoking tent, even after hours of fractious budget talks.
Even more unlikely, however, was the kinship struck between Hollingsworth, an ardent opponent of gay marriage, and Schwarzenegger's Democratic chief of staff, Susan Kennedy, who married another woman in a ceremony in Hawaii about 10 years ago.
They, too, bonded over cigars. Kennedy is known to have some of the finest in the house.
Not exactly a self-explanatory sentence,
but close enough.
Don't you know who I am?
When black supremacist Henry Gates asked the officer "Don't you know who I am?" ... the fitting response would have been "No, I don't know who you are, but as of this moment I know what
Intelligent Design and health care
When asking whether an organic form like an eye was formed by gradual random stages or designed by an intelligence, the crucial question is this: Could the stages that led up to this structure during the random process have survived selection? Can you reconstruct a sequence of "partial eyes" that would give the animal more benefit than cost, or would those "partial eyes" be useless appendages that use up nutrition and energy without helping the animal survive better? If nothing short of the final product would help, then the final product couldn't have been formed by random selection. It must have been designed in its final form. Or more precisely, the genes that determine its growth must have been designed as a complete system.
Obama's health care reform is a good example of an intermediate appendage with more cost than benefit. Truly intelligent designs for health care do exist, but they are complete systems
that take care of all medical needs under the same umbrella. That's the only way to get a final product that gives the country more benefit than cost.
This isn't surprising, since Obama's plan is meant to get through Congress, which is the perfect opposite of intelligence. The only way we'll get a truly beneficial "organ" is by an executive order, the metaphorical equivalent of divine intervention.
Right adjective, wrong party
The Cambridge police union head got off a perfect putdown, right up in the Churchill League.
Referring to Obama's description of Officer Crowley's actions as "stupid", union head O'Connor said "The president had the right adjective but the wrong party."
He could have gone farther: when Obama mentioned a history of racial problems, he also had the wrong party. Gates has made a career of stirring up racial hatreds. He is a social arsonist, a professional war-starter. Officer Crowley has made a career of attempting to put out
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Overall it's exceedingly unusual
for police commissions and police unions to speak at all in situations like this, even when governors and presidents haven't waded into the fray. Police bosses almost always stay under the radar, letting the cop twist slowly, slowly in the wind. Given that Cambridge is a hard-left college town where the only non-Obama votes went to the Green Party or the Revolutionary Workers Party, this level of courage is even more unprecedented.
The initial response of CNN's Authentic African-American Anchor was highly illustrative, exposing a rarely-seen vista into the demented mind of our enemy-controlled media. As the conference ended, he was actually muttering to himself, totally bemused and blindsided, as if he had been watching an announcement by a seven-headed Venusian alien. After he gathered his wits a little, he said "Well, I was really expecting that we'd be moving forward; I was expecting something more constructive, something that would mend the fences." Shows the same imperial arrogance that Gates himself showed. The ONLY POSSIBLE RESPONSE by white authorities in this situation is public hara-kiri, public self-immolation. ANY OTHER RESPONSE is literally unimaginable, and the Cambridge response ("We don't need to apologize, you need to apologize") is ten steps beyond unimaginable.
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Later: Obama jumped in again, calling it a "teachable moment" for everyone. Nope, only one person needs to be taught. Henry Louis Gates needs to be taught how to behave like a civilized human, because even an encounter with the police apparently didn't teach him anything.
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What do I really think? I think Gates may be senile. Forgetting your keys, paranoia about strangers in the house, unstoppable aggressiveness ... all could be results of jet lag and imperial arrogance, but they are also typical signs of senility. Look at his gaping mouth in the picture of the incident. Doesn't he look Alzheimerish?
India shows guts
Via Watts Up With That:
India rejected key scientific findings on global warming, while the European Union called for more action by developing states on greenhouse gas emissions.
Jairam Ramesh, the Indian environment minister, accused the developed world of needlessly raising alarm over melting Himalayan glaciers.
He dismissed scientists’ predictions that Himalayan glaciers might disappear within 40 years as a result of global warming.
“We have to get out of the preconceived notion, which is based on western media, and invest our scientific research and other capacities to study Himalayan atmosphere,” he said.
“Science has its limitation. You cannot substitute the knowledge that has been gained by the people living in cold deserts through everyday experience.”
Bravo, bravo, bravo. India and China have supported the Kyoto process from the start, because the whole point of the Kyoto process is to kill the West and give total advantage to China and India. China and India have thus behaved as sane normal governments, supporting a move that will aid their people, while US and European govs have behaved insanely, committing economic suicide on behalf of their people.
Until now, India and China went along with the "science" of "global warming" because Kyoto depended on that monstrous conglobulation of quackery, chicanery and fraud. Now the environment minister
of India is supporting real science and local common sense.
Perhaps Minister Ramesh foresees that India will ultimately lose when the West is destroyed by Gaia, or perhaps he's just an honest scientist and an honest man. In either case, India is a hugely important country, so this explicit rejection of Gaia by its environment minister
will reverberate through the rest of the world.
Polistra and Happystar (who haven't been around much lately) salute India.
America has replaced morality with licensing.
You can do anything with impunity, as long as you have the correct credentials.
Killing a child will get you arrested and tried for 1st degree murder ... unless you're a licensed abortionist, in which case the "legal" system will pull out all the stops to protect you from justice, even protect you from protesters.
Stealing money will get you arrested and tried for robbery ... unless you're a member of the Wall Street Mafia, in which case it will get you appointed to a high federal office.
Bernie Madoff is an interesting exception to this rule. He's clearly a member of the Mafia, he's definitely Jewish, he knows all the People Who Count in New York, Washington and Hollywood, and yet he was arrested and imprisoned hard and fast, not hired as Treasury Secretary.
It's a genuine puzzle. Does he know too much? Did he need to be silenced? [Later: No mystery. He stole from Jews.]
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A completely unrelated thought, also triggered by Madoff. Before the doors clanged shut, it was reported that Bernie was paying a "prison placement consultant". The news shows mentioned this with disbelief, but I know that such consultants existed when I was at Mansfield.
There were two layers of consultancy. If you had real pull or aristocratic privilege, you could get moved to Lebanon, which was a newer and more humane facility. This assignment happened purely through official channels.
If you didn't qualify for that step, Beasley could help. Beasley (pronounced 'Beeeeeeleh') was a squat toad-like black inmate who nominally worked in the Laundry but really ran a lucrative cell placement racket. Beeeeeeleh had separate agents for the black and white populations. You had to get introduced to the appropriate agent by word of mouth, and after that you would pay a certain number of cartons of Koo for the chance of reassignment. I assume Beeeeeeleh had some kind of extortionate connection to the administration, because shortly after you paid the requisite number of Koo, you'd be moved to a new cell. It wasn't always the one you wanted, and you generally had to make two or three moves to get into a safe place. Nevertheless it worked, rather neatly and quickly. I probably owe my life to Consultant Beeeeeeleh.
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Much later update: Beasley looked a LOT like this canine Beasley.
Obama commenting on the arrest of Henry Gates:
"What I think we know separate and apart from this incident is that there is a long history in this country of African Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately."
Nonsense. Blacks are UNDER-arrested. And you don't need any fancy statistics to know this. You just need common sense and logic.
Which part of town has more crime, the black part or the white part?
Always the black part.
Can the police catch all criminals? Of course not. But if the cops are catching "enough" criminals, the wannabes, the dudes with criminal orientation who haven't yet done anything serious, will understand that the odds are entirely against them. Crazy people will still do bad things, but the professionals will either be locked up or seeking other types of work.
If police were arresting too many
blacks, including many completely innocent ones, that would mean the "enough" point had been reached and passed. In that case the black part of town would be significantly less violent than the white part.
Since we know that the black side of town is more violent, we immediately know that the cops are arresting a lower
proportion of black criminals than white criminals, nowhere near the "enough" point and certainly not beyond it.
We'll never learn this obvious fact, because we're stuck on insane egalitarianism, stuck with the bizarre delusion that all humans are identical. Under this delusion, blacks and whites should be equally prone to violence, therefore the arrest rate should be about the same. The plain fact
is drastically otherwise. In fact
Africans are about 8 times more prone to violence than Caucasians. So an equal
arrest rate would only catch about 12% of the black criminals. Current arrest rates are not equal, and we are catching considerably more than 12%, but the egalitarian delusion prevents police from reaching a true equality of effect.
Looking at it from a constitutional viewpoint (I know the Constitution has been null and void since 1803, but just for a literary exercise): When we require equal treatment and equal rights, what should this really mean? Should we give liberty and opportunity to the non-criminals or to the criminals? Our current approach gives liberty and opportunity to criminals, which predictably leaves the non-criminals in black neighborhoods imprisoned by poverty and gunfire.
If we returned to the original focus of "rights", we'd try to insure a safe environment for every ordinary
citizen, especially the vulnerable ones such as the grandmas and young kids in ghettos. We'd remove the handcuffs from cops and put them on violent criminals. We'd disconnect criminality and violence from the drug culture by legalizing, regulating and taxing drugs, and we'd rebuild industry so black men could earn a good living honestly.
Apollo and all that
Okay, I'll add my bit to the 40-year anniversary.
Where was I on 7/20/69? I was in the Ohio State Reformatory, doing time for possession of one seed of the forbidden herb. I was trying to survive daily beatings by my cellie Charlie Manis and avoid daily rapes by everyone else. (Manis, not Manson ... though as it happens Charlie Manson was also a proud OSR alumnus!) I was learning many new facts about the wondrous rainbow of human racial and sexual diversity, the human capacity for evil, and the idiocy of American state, local and federal governments. All of this material was new and hard to digest. Thus I didn't have abundant time or energy to ponder the "heroism" of the astronauts.
Even before that, I wasn't highly impressed by manned spaceflight. Perhaps an unusual attitude for a pure nerd, but I just didn't see the point, didn't share the admiration for "heroes".
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Polistra has already handled the subject anyway.
One bit of logic on health reform
Polistra has frequently stated
the plain and simple truth: Follow France. Simply duplicate the French single-payer system. Costs half as much, gives better results. No further discussion is needed. For that matter, the Australian system
would do just as well.
But since we're incapable of doing anything proper or useful, since Obama is taking the worst of both worlds with more cost than savings, with even more profit to Big Pharma and Big Insurance
than the current setup, we're stuck as usual in the standard nonsensical "debate" between the standard two teams of zombies trying to defend the indefensible. As usual in American politics, our "reforms" only lead to more complication and faster collapse.
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I'm constantly frustrated that the brand-D side isn't pushing for genuine reform, isn't using all available arguments to make the point, isn't countering the tired old nonsense with plain facts.
One argument that could be knocked down easily: Brand-R constantly says "People come here from other countries to get superior medical care. Americans don't go to other countries for medical care. This one-way flow proves our system is the best."
This may be numerically true but it proves nothing.
Fact is, other countries do a vastly better job for all but the richest citizens. Their richest people can afford to hop in the private Gulfstream and zip off to Mayo for the best liposuction.
America does a wonderful job for the richest and a shitty job for the lower half. Those who are badly served by the American system can't afford to wander the world in search of better service,
so they don't show up as the opposite side of this equation.
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Later: Kudos to CNN's Rick Sanchez for breaking out of the Zombie Jamboree and locating some actual facts. His interview with the former Canadian health minister yesterday covered this territory, even the same language about rich folks zipping off to Mayo. He totally exploded the standard brand-R line about rationing. But he didn't quite reach my basic logical point.
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Later still: Another question I'd like to see answered, not quite related but worth writing while I'm thinking of it.
Why does individual medical coverage cost dramatically more than corporate group coverage? If corporations did most of the work this would make sense, but they generally don't. I know this because I used to work as an office manager. We didn't select the employees for health, and we didn't filter or process the claims; we just mailed them to Equitable.
The insurance companies say it's because the group pools the risk, but this doesn't make sense either. The entire purpose of the insurance company itself
is to pool all of the risks. Employers don't "pre-pool" anything. The concept is meaningless.
Zogby notices secession
I've been getting Zogby's online polls for a long time, and for a long time the pattern was fairly consistent. Seems like they're changing both content and style lately; the questions are getting more interesting but the answers aren't planned as well as before.
Apparently they can't begin to imagine thrift and simplicity. They assume everyone lives on credit cards and home equity loans until foreclosure. So their economic questions are very hard for me to answer honestly, because there isn't a N/A choice available.
Are you driving less because of the recession? Have you bought a smaller car? Are you dining out less? Buying less jewelry? Have you downsized your house?
No, you dummies, I don't own a car, I never dine out anyway, I've never bought jewelry in my life, and my house
is already downsized beyond anything you can imagine. And it's all paid for.
So there. Nyah nyah nyah. (Couldn't resist the Loser's Revenge!)
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Two questions on this morning's quiz caught my attention forcefully:
Either Zogby has decided that secession is a widespread thought, or an organization pushing secession has enough money to buy a question. In either case it indicates some popular strength behind the idea.
At last an interesting bit of science.
Every day in science-oriented news we hear of a new study showing that some tendency, from honesty to obesity to (of course) breast cancer is partly determined by heredity. These studies are not needed. Pure waste. We ALREADY KNOW DAMN WELL that every human tendency, taste and talent is roughly half innate and half learned.
Studying each tendency on its own is like carefully examining every dog in the world and saying "This one appears to have four legs. And this one appears to have four legs. And this spotted one seems to have four legs. Surprisingly, this small one with big eyes also appears to have four legs. Amazingly, this big brown one seems to have four legs. Wowie zowie! I think this scruffy one has four legs as well! Will wonders never cease?"
The only thing these "studies" prove is that scientists are still hopelessly ensnared and stupefied by Leninist egalitarianism.Finally
we have one study with a truly new, surprising and crucially useful
finding about heredity.
In short: Intelligence depends MORE on genes and LESS on training as you get older.
From the brief article
in New Supersitionist:
Previous studies have shown that variations in intelligence are at least partly due to genetics. To find out whether this genetic contribution varies with age, Plomin's team pooled data from six separate studies carried out in the US, the UK, Australia and the Netherlands, involving a total of 11,000 pairs of twins.
In these studies, the researchers tested twins on reasoning, logic and arithmetic to measure a quantity called general cognitive ability, or "g". Each study also included both identical twins, who have the same genes, and fraternal twins, who share about half their genes, making it possible to disentangle the contributions of genes and environment to their g scores.
Plomin's team calculated that in childhood, genes account for about 41 per cent of the variation in intelligence. In adolescence, this rose to 55 per cent; by young adulthood, it was 66 per cent.
This is certainly counter-intuitive. On Nature vs Nurture I'm hard-line Nature, but I also know a thing or two about neurons. Thus I'd always assumed that differing experiences shape your ability to learn in different ways. Use more language neurons, grow more language pathways. Use more number neurons, grow more number pathways. If identical twin Bob is doing more mental work than Bill, Bob should grow more pathways overall, and Bob's intelligence should increase more than Bill's, even though they started with the same brain.
Apparently the surprising result is still unexplained. Since the study pools information from several countries, you can't implicate one cultural milieu or one educational system.
And then the researchers claw their way out of egalitarianism for a moment to reach some valid conclusions for education:
Plomin suggests that genetic differences may be more accentuated if all children share an identical curriculum instead of it being tailored to a child's natural abilities. "My inclination would be to give everyone a good education, but put more effort into the lower end," he says.
Yes! Yes! Tailor to natural abilities! Yes! Can we spell apprentice
This finding also settles the "puzzling" question of why black students seem to do well enough until 4th grade, then fall farther behind in higher grades.
If we were really serious about serving our black population (and half of the Caucasians) we'd quit trying to educate everyone to compete with the Chinese, because THAT WILL NOT WORK. IT IS PHYSICALLY AND GENETICALLY IMPOSSIBLE.
Abstract intelligence has NEVER been America's strong point, as Polistra has discussed in detail.
Until we return to our previous accurate reckoning of our comparative strengths and weaknesses, we will continue to get weaker and weaker.
If we want to regain our power, we should put all of our resources into rebuilding American heavy industry and cut all ties with China and India. Call it the Second War of Independence. Yes, it would cost a lot to buy out China's bonds, but we're currently throwing trillions down the drain to stay
enslaved to China!
We need more quitters!
From an article
about Mark Sanford's idiotic insistence on staying in office:
"It's in the spirit of making good from bad that I am committing to you and the larger family of South Carolinians to use this experience to both trust God in his larger work of changing me, and from my end, to work to becoming a better and more effective leader," he wrote. ... Legislators said the governor's previous pledges to work together always quickly disintegrated. ... Sanford, who has long fought to give the governor's office more control in the legislatively strong state, wrote that he would continue to push his agenda. And although he said his approach needed to be "less strident," critics said Sanford's contrition came 6 1/2 years too late.
Skipping the weird part-Christian part-hippie psychobabble about forgiveness ... Just exactly what are you seeking
when you hang around after your balls have been clipped? It's not power, because your power is gone. Your agenda is finished, and you have to be "less strident" to survive. It's not pleasure, because it can't be any fun when everyone is mocking you. It's not sex, because your wife and your mistress are both unavailable now that you've ruined both of their lives.
Maybe it's just a matter of vesting your pension? If that's the case, we need to change some laws. Make the pension for civilian office depend on an honorable discharge, as with military officers. Such a provision might encourage more officials to get the hell out after they soil the nest. (Note that I didn't
say it would encourage more officials to be honest in the first place. That ain't gonna happen, nohow, noway.)
Nightline takes control
CNN's media-analysis show mentions this morning that ABC's Nightline has taken first place in the late-night spot. It was ahead of Letterman already, and since Conan replaced Leno, Nightline has moved ahead of both.
I'm not surprised. The post-Koppel Nightline is a lively show with real human interest. Leno is a leftist but managed to speak to a cross-section of Americans. Conan is pure left, pure New York, purely disconnected from America.
I tried watching him the first two nights, found him almost as funny as Seinfeld, almost as interesting as football. In other words, not worth wasting one microsecond of my time.
Here's what I wrote two years ago, shortly after Nightline was freed from Comrade Koppel:
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Lately there's plenty of yakety-yak about the horrors of reintroducing the Fairness Doctrine, and about the wonders of our modern Hundred Flowers as opposed to the old uniformity.
Being thoroughly soaked in 1940's radio, I've been pondering this for a while. I've also been bemoaning the modern disconnect from classical forms of culture ... not in terms of availability but in terms of commonality. You can certainly enjoy Bach or Whitman today, but you can't expect anyone else to understand a reference to Bach or Whitman. I've said that before, but tonight I've realized something new.
Let's compare a tomographic slice of 1941 and 2001.
What was on the average American's radio when Pearl Harbor sliced into their lives?
And what was on the average American's TV when 9/11 smashed into our lives?
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On Sunday afternoon, 12/7/41, when the first solid news from Honolulu interrupted regular programming:
NBC's Blue network had "University of Chicago Roundtable", an academic discussion of Canada's enthusiastic participation in the European war, including Canada's total mobilization of industry and placement of saboteurs and dissidents in concentration camps. [The Mayor of Montreal attempted to make Montreal into a sanctuary city. He was slapped in prison for the duration!] Strange as it may seem today, FDR was consciously emulating Canada's hard-ass example in mobilizing for war, and these academics didn't like it much.
CBS had a musical program of folk favorites by tenor John Charles Thomas, followed by the New York Philharmonic.
NBC's Red Network (which later became ABC) had two separate feeds: a program of Bach harpsichord music by Sylvia Marlowe, and "National Vespers" with a wonderful sermon by Harry Emerson Fosdick.
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9/11 happened in the modern cable era, when you can get "anything you want" on TV. Nevertheless, the main networks are still around in some form, and NBC has grown several branches again.
So let's examine the wild cornucopia of diversity available on TV at the moment when Arabia attacked us:
ABC had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
CBS had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
CNN had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
Fox had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
NBC had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
MSNBC had a program of celebrity trivia falsely described as news.
CNBC had a program of stock-market hype designed to get suckers to
buy the right stocks so insiders could sell them at higher prices.
Yessir, diversity. Six flavors of shit and one flavor of fraud.
The networks justify this on the basis that the public wants it.
Basic problem with that logic: if you're never going to try
anything other than shit and fraud, you don't have the slightest goddamn idea whether the public might want or appreciate
anything other than shit and fraud.
The old law, set up by Herbert Hoover when he was Secy of Commerce in the '20s, and formalized in the Communications Act of 1934, required broadcasters to spend a certain amount of time on religion, education, and the arts. Their managers may not have liked it, but they carried out the mission with gusto and tremendous quality.
Why the gusto and quality? Because everyone had to offer some culture and religion; thus there was no competitive advantage in bottom-feeding. You had to compete with good stuff
at least part of the time, so your advantage arose from finding the best and most interesting cultural and educational material.
And that's my new realization. Capitalists like to say that government regulation always pushes things downward, and letting "the market" function leads to highest quality. Nope. It doesn't always work one way or the other. FCC regulation of radio and TV pushed quality upward, and kept quality available to anyone who wanted it.
This worked for several decades.
Under the newer setup, you can find preachers on Christian channels, and you can find Bach on your local NPR radio station. So what's the problem?
The problem is not availability but segregation, and segregation cuts three ways.
(1) The simplest effect is that ordinary people never get exposed to Bach or Whitman, because most people stay within their comfort zone.
(2) If you live in a big city with an NPR station, you can pick up Bach or Stephen Foster, but you'll need to have a fast finger on the Mute button if you don't want to hear Marxist propaganda immediately afterward. Might call it the Crackerjack Principle. If you want serious culture, you have to dig through the box of Communist Crunchies to reach it. Lenin is tightly coupled with culture, and pro-American thinking is tightly coupled to - God save us all - Charlie Daniels and The Oak Ridge Boys.
(3) Performers and creators of serious cultural products don't get exposed to wide audiences, which means there's no commercial motivation for good formal art or music. The performers thus stick to their academic ghettos, pleasing only their avant-garde colleagues. In religion, preachers talk only to the converted.
In sum, the modern segregated arrangement insulates ordinary people from the pleasures and benefits of high culture or religion, and insulates the purveyors of culture and religion from the pressures and rewards that would lead to understandable and universal works.
Is there an exception? A saving grace? Oddly enough, ABC's Nightline comes mighty close. Since the departure of Comrade Ted Koppel into the comfort of the NPR ghetto, and the hajj of Imam Dave Marash to al-Jazeera, Nightline has been reshaped into a mix of serious culture, religion, and ordinary but interesting lives, served up with a constant level of respect
that Bob Trout would have understood perfectly.
Another point outside the chalk lines
what happens when we elect a "wild-eyed leftist":
Federal officials say deportations from Washington, Oregon and Alaska are up by nearly 10 percent from a year ago.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement also says that deportations of illegal immigrants with criminal records has spiked by 50 percent.
This shouldn't be surprising.
Historically, Brand-R presidents do more for the left-wing agenda, and Brand-D presidents do more for the right-wing agenda.
You'd never know this from listening to the talking point heads on either side. Though some of the talkers pretend to want tighter borders, neither side is really serious. All of the media and nearly all of the jabberers are enslaved to the Wall Street Mafia, which wants to drive wages within this unfortunate country to zero. Wall Street favored slavery in 1860, and still does today.
So why are we finally getting better enforcement under Obama? Partly because he's simply paying damn attention
to the government that he runs. The Bushes, father and son, are lazy rich boys who let the bureaucrats run rampant. Obama has his hands on the wheel, and the underlings sense the need to enforce a few laws, at least until they can wear him down. Mostly it's because of unions, who want to see American workers paid well.
Listening to Congress
gently teasing Shotgun Paulson about the Bank of America thing.
Kanjorski sort of halfway tried, yet again, to get some microfragment of truth from this monstrous criminal, but it didn't work and he wasn't trying very hard.
Kanjorski asked "Many people still believe this whole bailout is just a façade. Can you give us any more definite information on what you believed would happen if you didn't bail out these banks?"
And Shotgun stammercroaked something like "W-w-w-w-w-ell, I-I-I-I-I-I-I thought it w-w-w-w-w-w-w-would be b-b-b-b-b-bad."
Great. That's really specific. Busts right through the façade, convinces me thoroughly. I'm sorry I doubted you, Lord Shotgun.
Is this Localism or Leninism?
Spokane's city govt is wrestling with a referendum petition from a group calling itself Envision Spokane,
with more than enough signatures for numerical validity. The organization is shadowy, with definite Gaia tendencies, and their "Community Bill of Rights"
is also vague.
Part of it appeals to my localist soul: more power to neighborhoods, less to the city council. This would unquestionably be good for the people of Spokane, since the city government is a miserable failure, incapable of doing anything helpful and enthusiastically expert at ruining everything it lays its hands on.
Unfortunately, the rest of this "Community Bill of Rights" is pure Gaia, granting "rights" to plants and animals and inviting crazy lawsuits every hour on the hour. The petition itself is prima facie invalid since it covers a wide range of topics and attempts to amend laws without listing chapter and verse of the deletions and additions. These two characteristics are more than enough to declare the petition null and void immediately under state law. No further evaluation is needed.
When the Council had to decide whether to approve the petition, all sorts of fireworks ensued. Net result: the two legitimate council members (Al French and Nancy McLaughlin) voted correctly to turn down the petition immediately. The other 5 showed themselves to be illegitimate chickenshit Commie cowards by voting to "let the people decide".
Several of the public commenters at the meeting made an important point: "Letting the people decide" is not how our system is meant to work. We elect and pay
legislators to perform a certain amount of filtering and judgment. This is especially important today when we no longer have a genuine free press. Local TV stations and newspaper are studiously ignoring this matter, diligently failing to investigate the connections and funding of "Envision Spokane." So the People will have no rational basis to decide.
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To see video of the council meeting, go here
and click on the July 13 square.
Sailer nails it
Wish I'd said this!
Last week, there was one of those now-traditional Two Minute Hates in the national media, familiar to people as diverse as James Watson, Don Imus, and Michael Richard. This one was directed at a swim club in suburban Philadelphia, which had agreed to allow an inner city daycare center to use its swimming pool each Monday all summer. But after the first visit by 65 black and Hispanic children, the club hastily changed its mind.
Of course, the swim club was denounced universally for "prejudice," but wouldn't the word "postjudice" be more appropriate? After all, beforehand, the swim club had presumed that hosting 65 inner city children in its pool (two-thirds of which is deep enough to drown in) would be a swell idea, and only then developed an aversion after they had experience with them.
I did recently hit the same general point
about the Leninist rule: "Stupefy, stupefy, stupefy. Never allow people to generalize from experience, forbid all thinking." But I wasn't paying attention to the news lately, and didn't stop to apply the same principle to this swimming-pool incident.
Lamar! Alexander is pushing moderately hard
for nuclear power. The details of his proposal are just right
: aim for 100 new plants in the next 20 years, fix regulations, provide loan guarantees, find a new way to handle waste.
The reporters at the news conference
asked good questions, and Lamar! handled them well with one exception. Q: "Why didn't you get this done in the Bush administration when you had the majority?" A: "Well, I don't know. I wish we had." That's a non-answer.
Unfortunately Lamar! is a moderate man, not the kind who stirs up public excitement. But maybe he doesn't need excitement since the allegedly "anti-energy" Obama admin, as noted before
, is already more pro-nuke than the allegedly "pro-energy" Sultan Bush admin.
The truth is: Sultan Bush was only pro-Saudi Arabian energy. He made absolutely no move
to increase America's energy production in any form, because more energy from America would compete with the Sultan's boss.
Man bites dog 2
Last week I mentioned
a strange story about an Authentic African-American who viciously attacked a dog for no reason. The dog, a little Pekingese type, was sitting inside a car with the windows closed. The Authentic African-American broke a window, pulled the dog out by its leash, and slammed the dog repeatedly against the sidewalk. The Authentic African-American then ran away. Police have identified him as Michael Jones, but haven't caught him yet. Since the home base of gangs is in California, presumably he returned there. Unlikely that he'll be caught; guaranteed that he won't serve any time. The dog is still in dubious condition,
possibly recovering but somewhat shaky.
This week a different story
with a very different ending. A white dickhead named Jason Poss (why are most white dickheads named either Jason or Travis?) went on an early-morning rampage in Northeast Spokane. He walked into a house and started beating a woman with his skateboard, while brandishing a butcher knife. When the family dog came toward him, he slashed the dog. Police found him; he then threatened the cops with the knife and they eliminated him from the genepool, thank heaven. (I'm especially glad, in a vicarious way, to see a skateboarding asshole
The woman and the dog are both recovering well, thank heaven.
The usual Communist organizations (Peace and Justice, ACLU, etc.) are ginning up their usual drumbeat of "police brutality", but they probably won't get much traction since Dickhead Poss is white and his victims are white. Nothing for Enemy Agent Jesse Jackson or Enemy of All Humanity Morris Dees to grab hold of.
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Oops, Preposition At End Of Sentence Alert!!!!
Two corrections to make the piece readable by conservatives:
1. I'm especially glad, in a vicarious way, to see out which a skateboarding asshole
2. Nothing of which for Enemy Agent Jesse Jackson or Enemy of All Humanity Morris Dees to grab hold.
CA = GM
Why not handle the bankrupt California the same way we handled the bankrupt GM?
Split it up into 4 new states, each bearing its proportional part of the indebtedness as a long-term payable. Let a special council of green-eyeshade auditors take full control over each new state for a year or so, until fresh governments can be formed. The new governments must exclude all legislators and top-level executives who served in the original state.
Give special treatment to the Hummer division (ie the San Francisco area, especially including the 9th Circuit Court). Spin Hummer off as a distinct country or fiefdom. Delete all decisions made by the 9th Circuit from American case law. Build an electrified and armed fence between the fiefdom and America. Sell the fiefdom to the Sheikh of Dubai for $1.00 and let him run it the same way he runs Dubai,
which isn't all that different from the way Gavin Newsom runs SF.
"News" on cracking social sec numbers....
Today's news is full of a "study"
showing how you can decode location and time of birth from the first five digits of the SSN. This isn't news,
though the detailed computerization of the process may be new.
Anyone who has worked with SSN's has observed this correlation. Back in the '70s when I was an office manager dealing with job applications and W2 forms, I "cracked" this "code" with no trouble at all, and enjoyed testing my knowledge by guessing the year and place of birth before peeking at the rest of the application.
It didn't matter much then, because online shopping and immigration fraud were only a sci-fi fantasy, and most transactions were done by name and face instead of by number.
The obvious solution to most of these problems is to make SSN's fully public. If anyone
can verify instantly that 123-45-6789 belongs to Jonathan Q. Doe, born in 1957 in Pittsburgh, then most attempted misuses of Jonathan's number can be instantly spotted. When you're dealing with a 20-year-old Mexican using 123-45-6789, you'll know he's fake. Fraudsters will understand this, and they will stop.
Listening to Chinese Agent Oh Ba-ma speaking about the World Suicide Pact.
Only two things need to be said.
1. If carbon were actually a problem, if these traitors and mass murderers actually believed their "scientific" shit, the ONLY SOLUTION
would be a total committment to nuclear power and hydroelectric power. Nuke and hydro can get us to a zero-emission power grid quickly and solidly. Since these traitors and mass murderers are not even mentioning nuclear, we know logically and dispositively that they don't really believe this crap.
2. If we had an actual opposition party, the opposition party would immediately start impeachment proceedings against Chinese Agent Oh Ba-ma. He is serving the enemy. Unfortunately both of our political "parties" are simply branches of China Incorporated. Chinese Agent McCain, as I've mentioned many times, was even more firmly devoted to serving his adopted home country and destroying America.
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A bit later and a bit calmer:
#1 is, of course, the one ray of sunlight in this giant mess. As I noted earlier,
the Obama administration is actually doing more for nuclear power than Bush did. Not nearly enough, but something. Obama is a clever politician. Today's absolutist Green rhetoric excites his young hard-left base and enrages pro-Western dinosaurs (it certainly pushed all my hot buttons, didn't it?), but behind the scenes his admin is doing some of the right things.
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Update Saturday: Listening to a Senate hearing from Tuesday replayed on C-Span. Lamar Alexander, bless his little flannel-shirted soul, said exactly the same thing I said: If carbon really is the problem, the ONLY
solution is to build lots of new nuke plants. And I'd add that even if carbon isn't the problem, which of course it isn't, we should still
be devoting 100% of our effort to building nukes. Whether you're concerned with CO2 or American survival, NUCLEAR IS THE SINGLE, SOLITARY, ONE AND ONLY SOLUTION.
Ah, sweet mystery
The Ingenues are back!
Or at least a subset of the band, with a different leader and a different shtick.
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In the unlikely event that there is an afterlife, and I find myself facing old St Pete, I'll ask him two questions. Where are the dogs, and where are the Ingenues?
If both are in Heaven, I'll meekly accept his authority. When he sends me to the Other Place, I'll take it.
But if either of these groups is not in Heaven, I'll eternally rebel against his authority.
Reassurance from Sen Inhofe
Senator Inhofe (the only legitimate Senator) is certain that the Carbon Cult will lose the next round. Speaking to a meeting in Enid,
Senator Inhofe said the cap-n-trade bill is DOA in the Senate.
“It’s dead on arrival in the Senate. It will not happen,” Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe told Enid Rotarians during their noon meeting Monday. “I can absolutely guarantee you it’s not going to happen in the Senate.”
Inhofe has been an outspoken opponent of economic concessions related to global warming legislation, and on Monday he again lashed out at the “faulty science” behind the House proposal.
“The whole notion of global warming is the greatest single hoax perpetuated on the American people,” he said.
That's why he's the only legitimate Senator: he's the only one who tells the truth.
However, climate bill proponents say more leading nations agree global warming is a concern.
I seem to recall the same "leading nations" agreeing on other concerns. For instance, "leading nations" agreed in 1936 that Jews needed to be eradicated. You'd think we would have learned that Germany's endorsement doesn't quite guarantee the validity or morality of an idea. You'd think American scientists and intellectuals would occasionally examine facts, reason, and human benefits instead of blindly following das Herrenvolk into the pit of Hell. Nope, we haven't learned a damn thing.
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Caveat: I'm certainly not saying that we can't or shouldn't learn from other countries. When another country has done a better job of designing a necessary
system or technique, we should copy as much as possible instead of re-inventing the wheel. France has done a better job with medical care and nuclear power, and we should learn from them. But in every situation we need to start with facts, aim to satisfy our own
needs and interests. After
we know what truly needs to happen, we can copy pre-existing ideas.
The American public school system perfectly illustrates the disastrous results of unnecessary
copying. Through the 1800's, American one-room schools naturally evolved ways of organizing and teaching that worked well for American kids.
The classroom was like an artisan's workshop, with the teacher as Master and the older or smarter students as Journeymen helping to teach the younger or dumber Apprentices. Math was taught concretely, beginning with "bead boards",
and there was plenty of room for play and social interaction. Around 1910 the government (under the guidance of Harvard intellectuals) began to adopt a German model, where the students remain in their seats all day while Herr Professor or Frau Professorin reads abstract theories and lists of facts. This "comprehensive" model became universal after WW2. Unsurprisingly, "comprehensive" works well in states like North Dakota and Minnesota where the people are largely Krauts. Unsurprisingly, it works very badly in places where Krauts are a small fraction of the population.
Labels: Carbon Cult, Experiential education
During his confirmation hearings, EPA secy Steven Chu spoke out solidly against nuclear power, following the usual Gaia line.
More recently, under pressure from Western governors and senators, he's backpedaled considerably. In fact he's starting to sound almost pro-nuke. Responding to Montana Gov Schweitzer
in a Western Govs Assn meeting,
Chu stated clearly that nuclear is a clean and desirable form of energy. Today in this Senate hearing in response to Idaho Sen Crapo,
Chu emphasized that the Obama admin has already provided loan guarantees for nuclear construction (which I didn't know), and then promised to do everything needed to clear out regulatory barriers.
If he means it, this is a highly positive step, and more than Sultan Bush ever did for nuclear power.
Kudos also to Schweitzer and Crapo for hard and persistent questioning in both of these meetings.
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Later: Polistra is puzzled (sort of) by the lack of public announcement of these changes. Most Americans now favor increasing nuke power. Not an overwhelming majority, but good enough for normal politics. Therefore, you'd think an administration would publicize
its efforts to support more power-plant construction. But the only thing we hear publicly is the raw 'Green meat', the solar, wind, and biomass. This satisfies the media, the gibbering insane Godzillas who shout at us from CNN, MSNBC and Fox. More precisely, it satisfies the Wall Street Mafia, which owns the media and salivates at the prospect of a new bubble to inflate. So the emphasis isn't really
puzzling, but it does remind us forcefully that the people are not even a minor third-order adjustment variable in our political equation.
Ack! In the latest New Superstitionist, yet another Commie takes on
the idiotic task of proving that all humans are effectively identical.
Race came to be recognized as a social construct: an aspect of social choices rather than a reflection of biological differences between racial groups. The constructionist thesis gained popularity after WW2 and encouraged advances in civil and human rights for racial minorities.
Minorities? Many of the groups that gained new "rights" are majorities in their lands, like the blacks in most of Africa. And their new "rights" have led to disaster. They were placed in control of systems that they didn't invent and didn't understand. That's not a "right", it's a guarantee of chaos, a cruel joke committed by the British Empire.
And with the Human Genome Project finding in 2000 that all humans are more than 99 percent alike, many thought genomics would put the final nail in the race coffin.
This is the standard line of the Constructionists, and it's SCIENTIFICALLY ABSURD.
If you're going to prohibit categories that are mathematically close, you are forbidding ALL HUMAN PERCEPTION AND THOUGHT, which is of course the real purpose of the Constructionists.
Let's consider other human-based categories. Hot and Cold only differ by about 80 degrees F, which is completely indistinguishable on a scale from absolute zero to the surface temperature of the sun. Red and Green are opposites to our eyes, yet their frequencies are indistinguishable on a graph of the entire electromagnetic spectrum from ELF to gamma rays. The bottom and top keys on a piano are seven octaves apart, which is just a flyspeck on the graph of all possible acoustic frequencies from the tidal pull of the galaxies to the vibration of an electron.
Nearly all human perceptions are based on very small gaps
when considered against the physical or biological range of each variable. Why should race be excluded because it also notices a tiny set of genetic differences, compared to the full spectrum of bacteria, slime molds, lilies, lily-scented three-foot-long spitting earthworms**,
octopuses, platypuses, and humans?
All humans can reliably distinguish both gender and race, which says that the categories are real and meaningful TO HUMANS.
Or a more active refutation: If race didn't have any defining characteristics, then mixing races wouldn't lead to stronger offspring. Just as with dogs or horses, purebreds tend to be defective and hybrids tend to be strong. Nice current example: Bush and Obama. Sultan Bush is the end-point of many generations of aristocratic New England Episcopal inbreeding. Like Prince Charles, he has that unmistakable inbred face and inbred mental deficiency. Obama, the self-described "mutt", has a well-proportioned face and body, a strong brain, and an amphibian nature that serves him well as an executive.
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** I included this nightmarish worm because it's in the local news lately. A Gaian Church group is suing EPA
to have the Giant White Palouse Lily-Scented Spitting Earthworm listed as an endangered species because only 4 specimens have been found in Whitman County in the last century. However, the very same worm is quite common a few counties north, around Leavenworth. Under the Endangered Species Tyranny, specimens found near Pullman count as a different kind of animal
than the specimens found near Leavenworth, because the specimens found near Pullman are found near Pullman while the specimens found near Leavenworth are found near Leavenworth.
In this situation we are required
by "science" to recognize two groups as different when they are precisely identical. With humans, we are required
by "science" to recognize groups as the same even when all humans instantly recognize the groups as different.
Seems inconsistent? Not really. The underlying consistency, as Orwell showed us so many years ago, is to confuse and stupefy, to abort every type of thinking at its birth. That's the precise meaning of his Newspeak word unthink
. Where logic spots a difference, "science" forces us to see equality. Where logic recognizes two things as equal, "science" forces us to see them as different.
Lots of speculation about Palin's sudden resignation. Some makes sense, some doesn't. One comment that doesn't make sense from Amy Holmes at NRO:
No way around it. She has just labeled herself a "quitter." Someone who doesn't finish what she started. What in the world is wrong with Republican governors? One self-absorbed politician after the next. Governors: "It's not all about you!"
Nope, Holmes has it backwards. The deepest problem with our political class right now is that they are not
quitters. They only want to stay in office, regardless of whether their presence contributes anything to their constituents or their state. Sanford is the perfect example.We need more quitters
, more politicians and celebrities who know when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em, know when the public would be better served by someone else.
Without quitters, we get the current pack of zombies. Walking dead, mechanically following in the random shuffling footsteps of demented senile "leaders" like Emperor Teddy and Manchurian Candidate McCain.
More seriously: When you've lost all credibility, or when events have gone beyond your comprehension, or when you're burned out, you cannot perform an important job.
If you stay in your office after these turning points, you are a danger to the public.
Wanna get really, really pissed off?
Continuing this week's (unintentional) canine theme. Big story in Spokane.
And rightfully a big story. Human civilization depends on dogs, and this evil featherless biped has violated the basic dog-man "social contract" by behaving like an Arab.
Seems like the kind of story that would go national, but I doubt that it will. The vicious entity who committed this atrocity is an Authentic African-American (i.e. a gangster with a long criminal record) so the national media won't be able to digest the story. Our enemy-controlled media have a strongly enforced official line: "Only whites can do evil. Southern Christian whites do nothing but evil. Authentic African-Americans are incapable of doing bad things."
for comments from Californians on the ridiculous fiscal condition of that state. One commenter named JerryS mentioned the low property taxes.
I hadn't realized just how unbelievably low they are!
I responded in that blog with a comparison, and I want to repeat the basic math here for easy reference.
Jerry said that his property is worth about $1.4 million at current realistic valuation, and his Cal property tax is $1300 per year.
My house here in Spokane is valued at about $60,000 by the county. (It wouldn't sell for that much, but we're talking about official valuation here.) My property tax is $600 per year, which is quite manageable even on my tiny income; doesn't feel excessive or outrageous at all.
My WA house is 1/20 of Jerry's CA house.
My WA tax is 1/2 of Jerry's CA tax.
In proportion, I'm paying 10 times
as much property tax as Jerry.
Another Wash commenter had a much higher house value but the very same proportion: Wash tax is 10 times
the California tax.
No damn wonder California is going bankrupt.
And still their governor can't get serious. Scheissenesser can't decide what to do, can't bring himself to offend any of the Important People, doesn't understand the purpose of governing.
What's wrong with these people?
A pet peeve, not highly important but highly annoying.
I often listen to "money talk" programs (e.g. Dave Ramsey), because they're the only live-talk shows that aren't simply brand-R or brand-D parrots.
Almost every hour of such shows includes one call along these lines: "I'm 52 years old, need about $70 K per year to live on. I have $3 million in an IRA. Should I be distributing this differently? Should I put some of this money in a variable-term annuity? I'm afraid I may have to keep working until I'm 70 if I can't find the best possible return."
And the "adviser" always answers the specific question about variable-term annuities or municipal bond funds or whatever.
The "adviser" never gives the correct
advice, which would be: "Listen here, dummy. You could put that $3 million under your mattress and pull out $70 K each year until you're 92. You don't need to worry about finicky details of investments, you just need to retire NOW. The R in IRA stands for Retirement, not Work Forever and Worry Forever. Retire now, dammit!"
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Sidenote: I really wonder if some
of those callers are simply lying, talking big to massage their giant egos. Why? Because I can't imagine how you could earn and accumulate several millions without being well-informed and decisive.
Meanwhile, back в Родину....
As America descends farther into abject enslavement to the Wall Street Mafia, as our formerly omnipotent industrial sector continues to evaporate, leaving nothing but bets and debts ... Russia is taking the upward road.
A new law eliminates casino gambling
except in a few tourist-riddled zones.
Russia is changing laws
to make oil production easier, as we prostrate ourselves before The Planet Goddess Gaia in a whirling frenzy of self-immolation.
Most interestingly, the Romanov Dynasty is being 'rehabilitated',
symbolically undoing the most basic transformation of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution; and the Orthodox Church is being welcomed back into schools and government, trending toward a theocracy.
Weirdest crime story
of the year. For the last three years
this guy has been supporting his dope habit by stealing fresh meat from grocery stores, stuffing it in his pants, taking it to bars and selling it to drunks. He's pulled in about $60,000 per year, and apparently has some helpers.
Aside from the super-yuk factor and the ample material for dirty puns, there are some serious questions. Why would anyone buy uncooked meat from a stranger in a bar? How did the grocery stores allow that much theft?
The whole thing has an old WW2 feel, as in this 1943 Fibber episode.
When "official" meat is rationed, you get this kind of black market activity. It doesn't make sense in an unrationed economy.