Saturday, February 28, 2009


If you're able to listen to music at your computer, you might want to check out Pandora. Plug in one artist or song and it starts playing. It plays your selection, then similar music. It then learns what you like by your rating of the songs playing. Other sites "learn" what you like but I think Pandora does a better job of it than most. (eg Amazon - that somehow thinks I'm interested in romantic novels, and tivo - that is pretty sure I'm gay)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Stealing From the AP

Sort of Understandable

If you've got time for it:

and, part two:

Re: zorn's comment, someone sent me this -- a good compilation of Democrats arguing against regulation that might have averted this mess:

French Neighbors

Shark Drop

Another one that I didn't do. (and I can't find who did) Seem like a kick butt idea though. Not many of them would land in places where they would do much good, but any that landed in your enemy's bathtub would be brutally effective. Can you imagine the psychological impact of a 400 pound shark crashing through your ceiling just as you were reaching for the cream rinse?

Fear Itself

Jonah Goldberg has got the One's number:

What’s particularly odious about Obama’s scare tactics is that he’s using them for the mother of all bait-and-switches. He justifiably scares people about the magnitude of the financial crisis, but uses that fear not to sell them on a solution to the crisis but to trick them into signing up for a new Great Society. It’s like convincing someone he’s got cancer and then telling him that’s why he needs to buy a new car.

and adds, on NRO:
One point I didn't get to flesh out: I don't understand what's so bad about using fear in politics. Doesn't it depend on what you use it for? And, isn't honesty an enormous part of the equation? If I yell "Fire!" in a crowded movie theater and there isn't one, I've done something really bad. If I yell "Fire!" in a movie theater when there is one, maybe I've done something really good. It certainly shouldn't suffice to say that in both circumstances I am a "fearmonger." Al Gore thinks Bush is a bad man because "he played on our fears" of terrorism. Well, doesn't that beg all sorts of questions?

I'd add that it's sometimes ok to calm legitimate fears, say, in order to restore some scrap of consumer confidence. Because this crisis in confidence feeds on itself and just adds to the problems in the financial sector.

Are You Getting This, Camera Guy?

All at once it hit me: make Snuggies out of Shamwows and you'd be rich. Think of it - Snugwow wearer on the couch eating cheerios... the dog jumps up and the bowl tips, oh noooo... but it's ok. The spill is contained with an outreached arm.

Put your kid in a snugwow and it would be like having a mop follow you around all day. And when the child is saturated, just wring them out over the sink. Are you getting this camera guy? I know that you are.


Ryanair is considering charging passengers £1 ($1.40) to use the lavatory on its flights, according to chief executive Michael O’Leary.

In an interview on BBC television this morning, Mr O’Leary said that the low-cost airline was looking at the possibility of installing a coin slot on the lavatory door so that “people might actually have to spend a pound to spend a penny.”

When you're a captive audience, it's unfair to have to pay to use the bathroom. But not if you're wearing the SnugWow!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

In the Same Vein

And one via Jeff in the comments, from TNGOP:

prettied up a little:

Got Dow?

Driving home I saw a "Got Hope?" bumper sticker just as Market Watch came on the radio. I'll bet the guy could hear me through both our rolled up windows.

Free Credit Card Check

If you type in your number, the answer is yes.


No Terror Talk

Let's hope it works:

WASHINGTON – Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano avoids the terms "terrorism" or "9/11" in remarks prepared for her first congressional testimony since taking office, signaling a sharp change in tone from her predecessors.

Napolitano is the first homeland security secretary to drop the term "terror" and "vulnerability" from remarks prepared for delivery to the House Homeland Security Committee, according to a copy obtained by The Associated Press.

You have to admit, it's a novel approach. "Don't look, don't tell"

Though I would have preferred an IRS ban on the words "delinquent" and "garnish".

Or, how bout getting the SEC to eliminate "downturn", "crash", "recession", and "grab your ankles."

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Talking Duck

A duck walks into a bar. And he says to the bartender "Got any grapes?" The bartender says "No, I don’t have any grapes." The duck walks out, sorely disappointed.

So the next day, he walks back into the bar, asks the same question, gets the same answer.

The day after, he walks back into the bar, and again, asks the bartender, "Do you have any grapes?" The bartender, having still not figured out why this duck seems to think he may have some grapes, says to the duck, "No, and if you come back in here tomorrow and ask me if I have any grapes, I will nail your bill to the bar!"

The duck frowns, turns around, and walks out of the bar. So the next day, the duck walks back into the bar, and asks the bartender "Got any nails?"

The bartender says, "No."

So the duck says, "Got any grapes?"


Rock Til You're Blue in the Face

...they may take our lives, but they\’ll never take… OUR RIGHT TO ROCK!

I didn't do this one, but I like it. Reminds me of one of my favorites:

braveheart via

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Another 'All You Need is the Headline'

Though I'm sure their parents don't think of them as lumps:

Too much PlayStation may cause painful lumps
Reuters - Tue Feb 24, 1:59 PM ET

New at This

I've only been a Catholic for a couple of years, (quick, someone alert Charles Johnson that someone may believe something other than his flavor of creation) and I'm not sure I even noticed Shrove Tuesday before, but here it is, and I find myself unprepared: Does anyone know how to cook a Shrove?

Busy Day

Sorry for the light posting, I got home from Monday's work at 5:00 AM today, which meant only a few hours sleep before I had to go out and do it again. Which all is terribly interesting I'm sure.

So anyway, light posting, plus, and I feel bad about this one -- I wasn't around to alert Chris Mathews' dry cleaner that this photo was hitting the wire:

I'm sure they've had to add a second shift.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Bill Maher

South Park nailed the mind of the modern atheist: It's not enough to just not believe in God - you've got to be a dick about it. And there's no better example of this than Bill Maher. So he was just an ass on the Oscars, nothing new.

This post, though, is about his new found economic expertise:

Maher ended his show with another stirring solution to the financial crisis: executing two random rich guys to set an example: "If we killed two random, rich greedy pigs; blew them up at halftime at next year’s Super Bowl. Or left them hanging on the big board at the New York Stock Exchange, you know, as a warning, with their balls in their mouths, I think it would really make everyone else sit up and take notice."

Well sure Bill, you say random but are you taking nominations? Cause I think you and Sean Penn qualify. (Maher's last girlfriend sued him for 9 million, so I suppose he's got at least that much in the bank)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Yes We Can Urge

I don't know about you but I'm proud to live in a country that isn't afraid to come right out and urge other countries to clean up their human rights abuses. "Don't make me come back here and urge you again." Give um hell, Hillary.


Smartest man, hey, which reminds me, btw, remember when Hillary was the smartest woman on the planet? then, one primary later, she was just a hack? remember? Well anyway, smartest man on the planet, no, in the solar system, smartest man in the solar system, and the solution he finds for the problem of the pool water is to pump water from the deep end to the shallow end? OK fine. I suspect that his genius will be displayed later, when he successfully blames the free market capitalists for the water not rising.

Joe the Plumber, locate your orifice protector.

***Update: Monday update - dow down another 1.6% at noon .... yeah, the market loves Obama's idea of taxing businesses more, even though they already pay one of the highest rates in the world.

NY Post Kerfuffle

At first I was tempted to defend the Post (give in on one monkey joke and soon monkeys will become taboo as a tool for achieving humor), but really, how can you oppose anything that gets Al Sharpton parading around with his aggrieved face on? Sure, the cartoon was about the writer of the stimulus bill being an idiot, or, one of the infinite monkeys sitting at one of the infinite typewriters; but the real joke is that Al can't, or won't, see that.

I imagine this will play out in the usual way: someone will give Sharpton money and he'll wander off. And it won't be safe to use the monkey-with-a-machine-gun metaphor for awhile. But in the meantime, enjoy the silly Sharpton huff-n-puff. He's an American institution.

"Look man, we haven't seen your kitty. Now quit asking me."

Would this have been funnier if it had been, "we haven't seen your monkey"? Nah, I think it works either way.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I'll Take "That Wasn't My Foot" For a Thousand, Alex

I'm amazed someone else noticed:

On Jeopardy the other day, Alex Trebek reads the answer:

"A Marxist stage before communism which is characterized by government control over the economy.... I thought it meant friendliness."

So, three of us, lumberkid included, hurry to answer: "What is socialism? Alex! What is Socialism?" But it turns out no haste in answering was needed; the three big-brained contestants just stood there staring off into space. I mean, these are the kind of people who know that the machine used in shoe stores to measure shoe size is called a Brannock device, and that the banana is technically a herb; but they don't know that socialism is government control of the economy? And they didn't know that socialism is a step on the two-step walk towards communism? At a time like this?

Have I said lately that we're doomed?

Position Already Filled


O what fun. "The View's" Joy Behar interviews Ann Coulter. Typical: Joy asks a question, waits for half the answer and then goes on with follow-up questions about what she expected Ann's answer would have been. Completely unaware of what the interviewee really answered...

BEHAR: "The View." Oh, yes, you've been on the show.

That -- did you feel we ganged up on you last time?


BEHAR: Or somewhat?

COULTER: It was a lot of fun. It was like the sisterhood of the traveling pants.


I'm expecting cards and letters from all of you.

BEHAR: Listen, you sold a lot of books that day. "The View" sells a lot books.

So what do you care if we ganged up on you?

COULTER: I didn't say you ganged up on me. You did.

Well, you sort of acted like we did.

No, I said it was a Joyful occasion.

BEHAR: People felt that you were pissed when you left. I'm just saying -- OK. So what do you think about this stimulus bill?

Friday, February 20, 2009

Golf Story

A young couple is golfing one day on a very exclusive course lined with million-dollar houses. On the third tee, the wife slices her shot right through the large front window of the biggest house along the course. They walk up, knock on the door, and hear a voice say, “Come on in.” Opening the door, they see glass everywhere and a broken bottle lying on the floor.

A man on the couch says, “Are you the people who broke my window?” The husband begins to apologize, but the man cuts him off. “Actually, I want to thank you—I’m a genie who was trapped in that bottle, and your wayward shot released me. I’m allowed to grant three wishes, so what I’d like to do is give each of you one wish, and I’ll keep the last one for myself.”

“Fantastic!” says the husband. “I want a million dollars a year for the rest of my life.”

“No problem,” says the genie, “it’s the least I could do. And you, ma’am, what do you want?”

“I want a house in every country in the world,” says the wife.

“Consider it done,” the genie replies, turning back to the man. “And now for my wish. Because I’ve been trapped in that bottle, I haven’t had sex in a really long time. My wish is to sleep with your wife.”

The husband takes a long look at his wife and says, “Well, we did get a lot of money and all those houses. If you don’t mind, honey, I don’t either.”

The wife agrees, and the genie takes her upstairs, where he ravishes her for three hours. After he’s through, the genie rolls over, looks at the wife, and asks, “How old is your husband, anyway?”

“Thirty-five,” she replies.

“And he still believes in genies?”


Full Body Scan

I, for one, don't mind the TSA's new toy. A pacemaker means I'm always in the pat-down line. And though I kind of enjoy that part of the airport experience (you better frisk me again officer Judy) I do worry about being late at the gate because of it.

"Yes sir, we're all very impressed, but if you don't mind,
we'd like to use the machine for scanning airline passengers."


Huffpo Red in the Face Over Fox News Hoax

This is, without a doubt, the best correction of the week. Okay, the month. Aw, hell, I'll say it: Best. Correction. Ever. From the Huffington Post:

huffpo gibson scrotum.jpg

Huffpo had posted what appeared to be a video of Fox News's John Gibson jokingly referring to Attorney General Eric Holder as a monkey with a "bright blue scrotum."

Followed by 414 comments that all say, roughly, "yeah, but Fox news sux"

I can understand how you might be fooled, and accidentally promote what turns out to be a faked video. Take the following video (that somehow just showed up on my Youtube account). I can't swear that it's genuine, though it certainly appears to be:

Wasted Time Friday

Good Advice

Good advice, no really, from Bill Clinton:

Former President Bill Clinton gives President Barack Obama an "A" grade for his first month in office, but tells ABC News that Obama needs to put on a more positive face when speaking to the American people about the economy...

Course he lapses right back into wrongnosity:
"Look, the American people, I think, know the president has tried to reach out to Republicans,"

Yeah, except for cutting them out of the stimulus bill, until the end, when they were allowed to vote yes... I suppose that's a Chicago reach-out. Clinton then extends his wrongness with:
I think you will see some good economic news from the stimulus fairly soon," Clinton said. "I think you'll start to see people express gratitude for getting the unemployment benefits, the tax cuts and the food stamps. And you'll see the money flowing through the economy.

Well ok then. Thirteen dollars a week might just pay for the increased energy costs due to the promised new carbon tax, but we'll have our food stamps and government health care. Good times, I tell ya, good times.

So note to President: Listen to Clinton; you don't do anyone any favors when you predict an epic depression.

Stealthy Driver

From the BBC:

Details of how police in the Irish Republic finally caught up with the country's most reckless driver have emerged, the Irish Times reports.

He had been wanted from counties Cork to Cavan after racking up scores of speeding tickets and parking fines.

However, each time the serial offender was stopped he managed to evade justice by giving a different address.

But then his cover was blown.

It was discovered that the man every member of the Irish police's rank and file had been looking for - a Mr Prawo Jazdy - wasn't exactly the sort of prized villain whose apprehension leads to an officer winning an award.

In fact he wasn't even human.

"Prawo Jazdy is actually the Polish for driving licence and not the first and surname on the licence," read a letter from June 2007 from an officer working within the Garda's traffic division.

Map showing Poland

"Having noticed this, I decided to check and see how many times officers have made this mistake.

"It is quite embarrassing to see that the system has created Prawo Jazdy as a person with over 50 identities."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Time of Testing

"Mark my words. It will not be six months before the world tests
Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy. The world is looking."
-Joe Biden


"Come on Michelle, it's not funny anymore. Open the door."


I thought that, as a matter of law, race no longer mattered in America. Could I have been wrong? Is there some kind of apartheid going on that I just haven't heard about? Course not. So why do we have this?:

WASHINGTON – Eric Holder, the nation's first black attorney general, said Wednesday the United States was "a nation of cowards" on matters of race, with most Americans avoiding candid discussions of racial issues. In a speech to Justice Department employees marking Black History Month, Holder said the workplace is largely integrated but Americans still self-segregate on the weekends and in their private lives.WASHINGTON – Eric Holder, the nation's first black attorney general, said Wednesday the United States was "a nation of cowards" on matters of race, with most Americans avoiding candid discussions of racial issues. In a speech to Justice Department employees marking Black History Month, Holder said the workplace is largely integrated but Americans still self-segregate on the weekends and in their private lives.

"Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards," Holder said.

Race issues continue to be a topic of political discussion, but "we, as average Americans, simply do not talk enough with each other about race."

What? Is there some urgent reason to discuss Kwanzaa? Just what subject is being neglected? And do you mean that I should be talking about black issues with black people, or with other white people?

Don't get me wrong. If there is some aspect of race that needs discussion, I'm all for it. But being a white guy, who works with black people, lives next to black people, and has absolutely no problems with that, I have to wonder just where it is I'm coming up short. Should I be complimenting black entertainers? Should I be discussing sickle-cell anemia? Maybe, should I learn to rap? I can't imagine there are any superlatives regarding Michael Jordan that have gone unsaid.

Of course, I'm being silly; I'm a great rapper. In fact when the stimulus bill gets around to supporting rappers, I'll probably cut a demo. OK, no, I'm being silly again. In fact I have little interest in rap, or Kwanzaa, or shizzle-talk. The same as I have little interest in Jazz, the gay lifestyle, or anime. That doesn't mean I think there's something wrong with people who do have an interest in such things, they're just not my things.

So as far as race goes, Mr Holder, everything is settled as far as I'm concerned. I treat all people fairly and equally, I think. And I expect the same in return. Problem solved. You have an issue to talk about, bring it up. You feel socially shut out? Well, you can come over to my house to socialize if you want, but you'll have to stop this pathetic whining.

And if we must discuss race: be prepared to discuss Norwegians.


Just to start the dialog ball rolling, Eric.... you weren't under the impression that you're a black man, right? Because most every summer, I'm darker than you. Could be, we should dialog about this.

Planned Avoidance of Parenthood

Planned Parenthood does not serve the community.

A Warren County woman sued Planned Parenthood Friday, accusing its staff of ignoring training and procedures by not reporting her suspected sex abuse when she was a minor, resulting in her being sexually abused for an additional 1½ years.

… The suit accused Planned Parenthood and five of its employees of ignoring obvious signs of suspected sexual abuse instead of reporting them as Ohio law requires.

… The woman was sexually assaulted from age 13 through age 17 by her biological father, and became pregnant by him, the suit alleges.

She went to the Mount Auburn facility of Planned Parenthood of Southwest Ohio in November 2004 to have an abortion. When questioned by Planned Parenthood employees, the girl told them “that she had been forced to do things that she did not want to do,” the suit alleges.

That statement, Hurley said, should have caused Planned Parenthood employees to alert law enforcement officials about suspected sex abuse against a minor.

The father was arrested 1½ years after her Planned Parenthood experience, Hurley said, when the girl’s future college basketball coach became suspicious and reported suspected abuse.

The father was convicted of sexual battery and sexual touching and sentenced in 2006 to five years in prison.

Doesn't it sound like possibly the Planned Parenthood "councilors" work on commission? Course it's not really counseling if you only ever recommend one outcome, is it? It's more like a sales pitch. Also from Stop the ACLU:
There needs to be a nationwide investigation of Planned Parenthood. We’re seeing over and over again a willful disobedience of the law, at the apparent expense of young girls across the country. (And this isn’t even touching in the racist eugenics the Planned Parenthood was founded upon, and still practices.)

The sad thing is that, given our new extremist liberal President and his extremist liberal accomplices in Washington, Planned Parenthood is unlikely to be forced to atone for their sins. Barack Obama certainly won’t hold them accountable — he is, after all, the only senator to have voted against a bill to protect children who were born alive after a failed abortion and sees children as a “punishment”. Obama will never go against Planned Parenthood; the feminist lobby is too powerful and important for him.

End of Days

This is what I was afraid of:

Tom Hanks, the actor and star of Forrest Gump, will turn on the Large Hadron Collider, designed to recreate the 'Big Bang', when it is finally repaired.

So, now it's not so easy to dismiss the prediction from Nostradamus:
After that five will not put out the flock,
A fugitive for Penelon he will turn loose:
To murmur falsely then help to come,
The chief will then abandon the siege.
Then Tom Hanks blows up the world.

OK well, it was nice while it lasted.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

He's Not So Dumb

OK, I'll admit it, the president isn't dumb:

President Obama opposes any move to bring back the so-called Fairness Doctrine, a spokesman told Wednesday.

The statement is the first definitive stance the administration has taken since an aide told an industry publication last summer that Obama opposes the doctrine -- a long-abolished policy that would require broadcasters to provide opposing viewpoints on controversial issues.

"As the president stated during the campaign, he does not believe the Fairness Doctrine should be reinstated," White House spokesman Ben LaBolt said.

That was after both senior adviser David Axelrod and White House press secretary Robert Gibbs left open the door on whether Obama would support reinstating the doctrine.

Darn, as a conservative, I was kind of looking forward to the idea getting further along before being squashed. I had no doubt that it would be squashed; any intellectually honest liberal should have been as outraged as I at the suggestion that the government control free speech.

Now the question is: Did the President reject the idea because it would have united the country against him like nothing else, or because government censorship is the exact opposite of what America is about? (I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one, so, ouchie, this hurts: Attaboy, prez)

Refreshing Openness, if You Can Find It

Remember transparency?:

In his first weeks in office, President Barack Obama shut down his predecessor’s system for reviewing regulations, realigned and expanded two key White House policymaking bodies and extended economic sanctions against parties to the conflict in the African nation of Cote D’Ivoire.

Despite the intense scrutiny a president gets just after the inauguration, Obama managed to take all these actions with nary a mention from the White House press corps.

The moves escaped notice because they were never announced by the White House Press Office and were never placed on the White House web site.

They came to light only because the official paperwork was transmitted to the Federal Register, a dense daily compendium of regulatory actions and other formal notices prepared by the National Archives. They were published there several days after the fact.

A Politico review of Federal Register issuances since Obama took office found three executive orders, one presidential memorandum, one presidential notice, and one proclamation that went unannounced by the White House.

Yes, this White House:
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Promising "a new era of openness in our country," President Obama signed executive orders Wednesday relating to ethics guidelines for staff members of his administration.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency," Obama said.

Obviously, the touchstones have been well hidden. He never said he wouldn't hide the touchstones.

Smartest President Ever

Or at Least Give Me a Hint


Win At Any Cost

Sure, I understand politicians are aggressive, head-strong, type A kind of guys. But you don't always have to win. Not everything is a contest.

"Booya! In your face, Baby!"

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Just Not Right

I apologize. This is unfair, and I feel guilty about posting it. Especially when you consider how kind and congratulatory most liberals were when George Bush was elected.


OK, you got your bill. Anyone, anyone at all, in this administration think it might be a good idea to try to talk up the economy now? How about a halt to talking it down; can we get that?

Diving Penguins

To go with the "Friends Like These" video.


Sub Bump

LONDON – Nuclear submarines from Britain and France collided deep in the Atlantic Ocean this month, authorities said Monday in the first acknowledgment of a highly unusual accident that one expert called the gravest in nearly a decade.

British diplomats have been working overtime trying to talk the French out of surrendering. "It's an uphill battle," said one diplomatic aide who asked not to be identified, "We keep telling them that we're not at war, but they assume we're trying to trick them, so they offer more and more land. We're up to everything from Le Havre to Alsace, EuroDisney, and every last painting in the Louvre."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Yearbook Photos

Before they were famous, yearbook photos of famous people:

Brad Pitt

Cameron Diaz

Janeane Garofalo

Hammer Time

I'm a hammer guy. (remember that fact, teenage boys who want to take my lumberkid to movies and such) But even I was stumped by some of the oddities on the hammer quiz.

The sensible thing to do when faced with a hammer that you've never seen before is to swing it and see what happens. You can't do that for the quiz, so stare at them for a bit and try to imagine swinging them. If anyone walks up and sees your monitor, mutter ", yes, they'll all pay.... they'll be sorry... when it's time to pay..." Chances are, you'll be left alone.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Boulder High

I had heard about the kids who tried to change the name of their high school to Barack Obama High but I didn't realize that the original name was so generic. So the high school was named after the city, which was named after a rock. Cool, so they're saying, "We think that changing the name of our school is disrespectful to both the school, and the rock after which it was named."

Anyway, the kids who tried to get the name changed admitted one very important thing: That we don't even have a month of Obama under our belts yet; we might want to wait until the man actually has some accomplishments to honor.

So far, he's gotten himself into power. That's one hell of an accomplishment, but keep in mind; Lenin, Pol Pot, and Idi Amin accomplished that. Not that I'm equating BO with those guys, I'm just saying that it's what Obama does from here on out that matters.

Getting the pork/stimulus package passed is an accomplishment -- an amazing one when you consider that he got it done without debate, discussion, or even with the members of congress being able to know exactly what they were voting on. But is it a good thing? I think we'll find out. And no, I don't want to argue with liberals about it. I am satisfied that they will have to live in this "new" America with me.

Is Obama's new Health Care IT initiative going to end up telling us what care we can and cannot get? I hope not, but if it does bring about Tom Daschle's vision, and eventually government run health care, I take solace in knowing that BO supporters will share the misery that brings.

Yeah, let's hold off renaming our high schools after him. That might be overkill once every hospital in the nation bears his name.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Wrong Early and Often

It takes a big man to admit when he's wrong. That's why Harry Reed and Barack Obama are quiet like mice.

Feel the Love

You can get a free MP3 of Marvin Gaye's Let's Get it On by clicking the above link, but first let me warn you, you have to get Amazon's free downloader in order to get it. So if you've already got the downloader, I'd say give it a click. But if you don't already have it... well it's up to you.

There's also this place, where the song can be had as a cover, as the original, as the original with skate boarders wiping out in the background, as covers with wide pans of pastoral sunsets, and as the original with clips of guys getting junk-punched all up in their man business. It's like a cornucopia.

On a Lighter Note

cyborg cow

The Government's Business

Quick, you guys, finish admonishing the bank execs about those private planes; you've got to get home and get packed:

Hurry, hurry, hurry. Congress will begin its 2009 travel season in earnest this weekend with two spectacular codels -- trips for House congressional delegations -- that are not to be missed.

On Saturday, Rep. John Tanner (D-Tenn.), chairman of the House delegation to NATO's parliamentary assembly, and his wife will lead a delegation of 13 lawmakers -- plus 10 spouses -- on a fine nine-day jaunt starting at NATO's headquarters in Brussels.

Before you start scoffing about how this hardly compares to Tanner's post-election delegation to Valencia and Rome in November, we would point out that the next stop is, yes, the City of Lights, Paris, where one could have a nice late Valentine's Day moment.

From there we move on to Vienna for a little Sacher torte and then to review NATO's strategy to defend the Bavarian Alps, stopping in the lovely ski center of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, with its breathtaking views.

The huge number of members, spouses and staffers, plus military escorts, will require taking one of the bigger military jets, but we're told these trips are an important use of taxpayer money.

So vote to put our children deep into debt then pack!
If working on NATO matters is not for you, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is leading a delegation to Europe next week for some important meetings in -- where else? -- the Eternal City, Rome. Details are sketchy so far, but we're hearing that there's a meeting with Pope Benedict himself. (Hey, ask him about that Holocaust-denier guy if you get a chance.) Pelosi is apparently going to get an award from an Italian legislative group -- she's huge over there -- and then maybe do just a bit of NATO stuff. There may be some other stops....

Just noting the hypocrisy is all.

(BTW -- If this pope gives Pelosi the Eucharist, I'm switching back to Lutheran. You'll find my resignation nailed to the door)

Krauthammer's Take

NRO had Krauthammer from last nights All Stars, concerning Gregg's decision not to take the Commerce Secretary job:

After all, commerce has only two things to be said for it. One is it runs the census, which is one of the few jobs the constitution gives the government. The constitution is all about the stuff that the Congress ought not, should not, or shall not do.

And the other nifty thing about that commerce is that it has aquarium in the headquarters in Washington. Once they took away the census, he was going to end up feeding fish in the aquarium.

It was a complete embarrassment and a humiliation, and I'm sure that was the main issue.

Sounds like a likely scenario to me. And you can't blame Gregg. But why was Gregg so gracious in his announcement rejecting the position? I would have made it clear: Obama's "bipartisan gesture" was a sham, and the only reason he nominated a Republican was because the position would have no power. So bipartisanship is going to be a fairy tale. When Obama complains that the R's are still practicing partisan politics, it's a lie. You can't get more partisan than the Democrats have been with this pork/stimulus bill, no Republican input needed, just vote on it, no, don't read it, just vote on it and shut up.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Help Waste Michael Moore's Time

The amazing MM posted about Michael Moore's pleas for whistleblowers for his next film. He's asking us to e-mail him if we know of any crimes or unfair practices in the financial world. I feel it's my civic duty to at least waste his time:

I have some inside information on a common, but secret, practice of collusion among several of the larger hedge funds. I would need assurances that neither my name nor the name of the fund I work for would be used. I am still employed by the firm as a legislative contact.

Rodger Thomas

I'm also working on a Nigerian scam, but that will be more complicated and may take some time. And yes, I know I'm not Nigerian -- that's the beauty of it. He'll never suspect a Norwegian.

In the meantime, I invite everyone to write him. He obviously needs the attention.

Google Update

For those who follow such things: AWL comes up number one out of almost 13 million for google query: ass on fire again.

Yessss! Getting the message out there.

Opening a Beer With a Chain Saw



There's a reason liberals don't much blame the Fannie-Freddy debacle on the GOP beyond off-hand snipes at George W's "giving wall street free reign." It's the donkeys who have fought regulation of the GSEs at every turn. (also not mentioned, because it makes congressmen squirm, was the fact that Barney Frank was sleeping with a Fannie muckety-muck during this period) (read them now, those particular words will probably never be put together in that way again)

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Terry Moran

I don't look down on that kid in Ft Meyers who asked Obama if there was anything he could do to get the kid more benefits at his part time McDonald's job. Even Obama knew that this isn't the time to mandate benefits for part time workers. That pretty much would be a way to put more people out of work. And hey, he's just a kid, asking for goodies from the man who promised goodies.

But I'd expect a little more from someone who co-anchors Nightline. From Scott Whitlock:

"Nightline" co-anchor Terry Moran on Tuesday interviewed Barack Obama and pressed him from the left, wondering why he didn't simply fire the executives who the journalist blamed for "wreck[ing] these banks in the first place." The two were discussing the stimulus bill and the current economic problems on Wall Street. As the MRC's Brent Baker already noted in a previous blog, Moran also seriously wondered, "Why not just nationalize the banks?"

Yeah, like nobody on the Obama team has thought about that yet. But again, even Obama knew not to go there. So Moran goes on:

"Why shouldn't you just fire the executives who wrecked these banks in the first place and tanked the world's financial system in the process?"

Uhhh, I dunno. Maybe because they're not federal employees? Great googily-moogily, what a stupid thing to suggest. I know, we could get executives from ACORN to run the banks! Then we could put on a play.

So, it's a toss up as to what is worse, the fact that "newsmen" feel it's important to give the President input, or the fact that their input shows the same grasp of the real world that the McDonald's kid had.

Man Saves Woman From Being Strangled In Car Wash

A car wash employee says she owes her life to a Southampton man who rushed to help her when her scarf became caught in a spinning scrubber brush and starting choking her.

Stephanie Carpluk says she was terrified as she desperately tried to free herself from the rotating brush while John O'Leary's car started moving through the Golden Nozzle car wash in Easthampton Sunday morning.

"The spinner spun my scarf around so it pulled me closer," Carpluk explained. "I didn't know what to think. I didn't know what to do. I was just so scared."

Carpluk continued to struggle to remove the scarf before she lost consciousness. That's when O'Leary jumped out of his car and cut her free with a pocket knife.

The next thing Carpluk remembers is waking up in the arms of a stranger who was encouraging her to breathe.

What struck me about this was the name of the car wash - the Golden Nozzle. Isn't that title reserved for whoever is the current head of the Kennedy clan?

link, via - Arbroath

Unfairness Doctrine

It's easy to understand Debbie Stabenow's motive for wanting the fairness doctrine back: Her husband is a player in the liberal radio market, and she's a greedy democrat, looking to take money from the taxpayers or have money forcibly extracted from the private sector.

Here's Harkin though:

He says liberal talk shows are disappearing, and implies that conservatives in the industry are pushing them out, but can he give an example of any liberal radio project that has failed for any reason other than the fact that people don't listen to them?

No, he doesn't want to get liberal voices out there, they are already out there; he wants to lower government's jackboot onto the throats of conservative talk show hosts. At the risk of duplicating a comment from the HuffPo: He should be frog-marched out of the Senate in handcuffs.

(also probably a good time to reflect on Obama's Rush comments: Just what the heck does he have to gain by picking a fight with a guy who has millions of listeners daily? Long ago I coined the phrase: "Don't pick a fight with someone who drinks ink by the barrel." Others later changed it to: “Don’t pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel.” but you get the point: avoid fights with such people. It can only end inkily)

video: Politico

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


See more at CollegeHumor.

h/t: Neatorama

Matthews Swooning Again

I guess the disillusion hasn't spread everywhere yet. From Brad Wilmouth, at Newsbusters:

Shortly after President Obama’s Monday press conference, during a special abbreviated edition of Countdown, MSNBC's Chris Matthews effused that he was "very impressed with [Obama's] amazing ability," opining that the President was "at his best intellectually." After reciting one of Obama’s answers, Matthews further gushed: "What a mind he has, and I love his ability to do it on television. I love to think with him."

Oh man, Chris, now you're embarrassing all men.

Paddington Bear Turns 50

Woo-hoo it's the fiftieth birthday of Paddington bear!! OK, I'm not really excited either. But on Jeopardy just now, a question about the 50th anniversary prompted one contestant to say, incorrectly, and probably for the first time in TV history, the words: "Who is Poo?"

The guy probably knew that the correct answer was, "Who is Paddington Bear?" but he also knew he'd never get the chance to give the poo answer again.


Just a bit of nostalgia: remember when pulling up your finances and seeing something like the above 3.3% drop would make you wonder, "What's going on today?"

I would take this as a reaction to last night's teaching moment. But really it's just a continuation of Obama's failure to do anything good for our economy. No, nothing good is going to come of this, and Wall Street knows it.

Obama had huge momentum. He could have come into office reassuring the American people and genuinely trying to mitigate the financial turmoil. Instead, he sees this ("too good to waste") crisis as a chance to implement his socialist ideas. Pathetic.

Take Care of Your Health Now

If you have any big health issues to take care of you might want to get them taken care of now, because next year they might be out of your hands. Regarding the "stimulus" Bloombberg has Betsy McCaughey's commentary:

Tragically, no one from either party is objecting to the health provisions slipped in without discussion. These provisions reflect the handiwork of Tom Daschle, until recently the nominee to head the Health and Human Services Department.

Senators should read these provisions and vote against them because they are dangerous to your health. (Page numbers refer to H.R. 1 EH, pdf version).

The bill’s health rules will affect “every individual in the United States” (445, 454, 479). Your medical treatments will be tracked electronically by a federal system. Having electronic medical records at your fingertips, easily transferred to a hospital, is beneficial. It will help avoid duplicate tests and errors.

But the bill goes further. One new bureaucracy, the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, will monitor treatments to make sure your doctor is doing what the federal government deems appropriate and cost effective. The goal is to reduce costs and “guide” your doctor’s decisions (442, 446). These provisions in the stimulus bill are virtually identical to what Daschle prescribed in his 2008 book, “Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis.” According to Daschle, doctors have to give up autonomy and “learn to operate less like solo practitioners.”

So we got rid of the tax cheat but we kept his plan. Great. The Daschle plan would tell doctors what they could and couldn't do for you. It's the first giant step on our way to our own NHS.

The NHS, by the way, is the British flavor of nationalized health care. It's the system responsible for this:
A former soldier pulled his own teeth out with a pair of pliers because he could not find a dentist to take on NHS patients.

Iraq War veteran Ian Boynton could not afford to go private for treatment so instead took the drastic action to remove 13 of his teeth that were giving him severe pain.

The 42-year-old, from Beverley, East Yorkshire, had not had his teeth looked at since seeing the army dentist in 2003. He had not been registered with a dentist of his own since 2001

Oh yeah. Change! Yes We Can! (dammit)

Monday, February 09, 2009

Why Isn't This News?

From Baron at Gates:

It’s the weekend in Malmö, and Arab counter-demonstrators are throwing bottles and firing rockets at a peaceful pro-Israel rally.

Ho hum. You call that news?

It’s a reprise of what went on two weeks ago, but this time with an escalation in violent methods: today the Muslim counter-demonstrators threw homemade pipe bombs as well as firing rockets and throwing stones and bottles.

Steen at Snaphanen Has pictures, and posts:
(MALMOE, SWEDEN, February) It was clear from the beginning that this time the police in Malmoe, Sweden, were under orders not to repeat the sort of behavior they had evidenced when supporters of free speech and Israel’s right to exist tried to demonstrate in the city’s main square on January 25. On that black Sunday, the police did absolutely nothing when a mob of Arab degenerates placed themselves a few meters from the 300-400 peaceful demonstrators and were allowed to cut the cable to the loudspeaker and pelt the assembly with rocks, bottles and homemade bombs. By Lars Hedegaard, og The International Free Press Society

Well, that explains how they became bold enough to use explosives. The police were too timid to stop the rocks, why not escalate? And say one of the pro-Israel demonstrators is able to grab one of your bombs and throw it back at you.... Israeli aggression!

Here's hoping that Barry Obama's Europeanization doesn't include this much tolerance for bad acting Muslims.

From Cato - Stimulus Talk

President Throws Snowball in Jest

the cat is not amused