AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka and his puppet via DayLife
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Posted by lumberjack at 11:40 PM
Thanks, TMI, for alerting me to this story:
A Colorado lumberjack who cut off all of the toes on his right foot after he was pinned by a logging trailer said he had been afraid it would take hours to find him and he might die.
Jon Hutt, 61, used a 3-inch pocket knife to sever his toes from the machinery about half an hour after realising no one heard his cries. He was deep in a forest trying to retrieve a pile of fallen trees to cut up for firewood when the trailer slipped.
This isn't that uncommon, actually. I've cut off toes and whittled on my foot because of intractably knotted bootlaces before. It's just a matter of who's going to be the boss, you or the laces/trailer.
OK not really. In fact, even among pretend lumberjacks like me, nobody goes out in the forest anymore. You can make more money by filling out paperwork certifying that you would be a lumberjack if it weren't for some physical handicap of childhood trauma, and then get the government to pay you for not chopping down trees.
In fact, until they closed the loophole, you could get the government to hire people to chop down the trees for you. You would then tell the hired "timber assistants" to cancel the job. Then you'd get paid for saving the forest; and get paid again for hiring workers from an economically depressed region; and get paid again when you sold the wood that didn't get cut to the government.
I made (or pretended to make) a good living doing this. Finally though, all that imaginary timber took a toll on my back and I couldn't pretend to do it any longer.
Posted by lumberjack at 6:55 PM
Monday, August 29, 2011
Remember after OJ Simpson's arrest, when Time darkened its cover image of him? It was a journalistic low point for Time, a magazine that keeps probing the limits of "low point".
I just hope that the Washington Times didn't do the same thing with this mug shot of President Obama's uncle. It was taken after his recent arrest for drunk driving.
Anyway, I won't jump to conclusions. I have no evidence that the image was manipulated; heck, maybe this is the image the police provided. Regardless, it is pretty dark; so I took the liberty of lightening it up some. No Mr President, no thanks are needed. I'm happy to contribute.
Posted by lumberjack at 8:48 PM
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Friday, August 26, 2011
Thursday, August 25, 2011
I heard this on the radio today. Glad I was able to find the clip:
W did spend a bunch of money, it's true. But Obama spent as much in his first two and a half years as Bush did in eight years. At that rate, Obama will have spent 12.8 trillion in his hypothetical eight years. Hypothetical because even if he gets reelected,(!) the nation can't survive under that much debt.
Posted by lumberjack at 12:54 AM
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
else heard reports that the citizens of Mineral, Virginia have
resorted to cannibalism? I personally have heard nothing of
the kind but I'd be interested in anything you may have heard.
Posted by lumberjack at 1:11 AM
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
So, had I fallen, I'm sure that on my way down I would have vividly remembered the admonitions of my elders many many years ago, telling me that you never ever stand or ride on the forks of a forklift. But I didn't fall. I'm a rule breaker. Yeah.
Actually it was rather strange, this quake. I was using the forklift as a platform so that I could work on a much bigger piece of machinery. So my first thought was that somebody was shaking the controls of my lift as a kind of unfunny joke. But I saw nobody down there. Then I briefly considered a malfunction, then ghosts. Briefly.
Now the machine I was working on can shake the ground when It drives, so I had to consider that since it wasn't running, that maybe it had been decoupled in time. So it was now rumbling, and would wait until later to actually start up and move. But I trust Hawking more than Vonnegut so I discounted the supernatural, and settled on Earthquake-good-Lord-get-down-from-here! By this time the fun was just about over.
Only odd thing: we have an old Regulator clock in the foyer that hasn't run in years. When I came home I found that the swaying had started it up and the pendulum was merrily counting off the time.
Posted by lumberjack at 5:25 PM
Monday, August 22, 2011
The Invisible Hand is really an amazing thing. It describes the self-regulating nature of the marketplace. Somehow, as if by magic, self interest works to produce stable and benevolent outcomes.
We get into trouble when we try to work against the Invisible Hand. The Hand said we had the right number of housing weatherizers in Seattle already. But the president's Hubris Brigade said it knew better:
Seattle had won a $20 million federal grant in 2010 to weatherize homes. The goals of the program were to create 2,000 jobs and retrofit 2,000 homes, according to the Seattle P-I.
“But more than a year later, Seattle’s numbers are lackluster. As of last week, only three homes had been retrofitted and just 14 new jobs have emerged from the program,” Seattle P-I wrote. “Many of the jobs are administrative, and not the entry-level pathways once dreamed for low-income workers. Some people wonder if the original goals are now achievable.”
Seattle isn’t alone. The Heritage Foundation noted in a blog post as Obama toured a battery plant in Holland, Mich. that another Michigan business touted by the administration for its “green jobs” no longer exists.
See, if there was a problem with the weatherization of homes in Seattle, someone would have profited by setting the situation straight. Without government intervention. Without grants. Someone like me would have noticed the problem, equipped a truck to do the job, and profited by making the situation better.
Notice I said "equipped a truck", not, "thrown the caulk-gun into the recumbent bike rack, along with insulation, weather-stripping, advertising fliers, and a dog named Toke, and set out to connect with home owners." The Invisible Hand even dictates the method by which the marketplace's business gets done. The usual way workmen go about their business is the profitable way; if it wasn't, they would abandon those ways and try new ones.
This administration thinks it knows better than the marketplace. It's wrong. It thinks high speed rail would be cool, but if we need high speed rail, the marketplace will notice. If we pump borrowed money into a project that the marketplace tells us we don't need, we'll regret it. Like the failed battery factory, the money sucking solar farm, the eagle chopping wind turbines.
We did yes we can. We did it to death. We need: yes we did, we're sorry, now we're done.
Posted by lumberjack at 11:29 AM
Friday, August 19, 2011
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Drudge put his Obama bicycle picture up so I suppose I should do the same. Yes, I photoshopped the training wheels in. His real training wheels are much bigger, cost more than the bike, and were made in Canada. (not that there's anything wrong with that)
Posted by lumberjack at 12:33 PM
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
There's a kind of interesting article article about RNA and the origins of life here. Interesting, that is, if you're interested in RNA/DNA and such.
They're looking for the right "soup" with which to accidentally brew life. Or more precisely, self-replicators. The same soup they were looking for when I was in school.
I can follow most of the article up until the last paragraph. Which sums up:
Right now, there's no way to choose between these options. No fossilised vestiges remain of the first replicators as far as we know. But we can try recreating the RNA world to demonstrate how it might have arisen. One day soon, Sutherland says, someone will fill a container with a mix of primordial chemicals, keep it under the right conditions, and watch life emerge. "That experiment will be done."
OK, so if you already know it will happen, why do the science? Used to be, you did the science in order to learn the results. Now we seem to know the results first, and do the science afterward.
Posted by lumberjack at 8:33 PM
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Monday, August 15, 2011
(CNSNews.com) – President Barack Obama on Thursday toured a vehicle battery plant in Michigan, touting his administration’s focus on green technology and jobs, at a corporation where federal money authorized by the economic stimulus law that Obama signed at the beginning of his presidency had created "green" jobs at a cost of about $2 million in federal subsidies per job.
Subsidizing batteries that aren't so great doesn't make them great, or even adequate. I continue my demand: Show me the battery.
Posted by lumberjack at 11:05 AM