September 30, 2007
My cynical side is thinking that it's just plain stupid and pointless.
My optimistic, hopeful, side thinks it's really cool.
The problem is, neither side seems to be winning.
Personally I don't think either one of them would be qualified to be president of the local chapter of the Che Guevara fan club.
But what struck me was Bill Clinton's answer to a question comparing his experience to that of Obama
Asked about his own experience when he became President aged 46 - the same age as Mr Obama is now - Mr Clinton said that in contrast to 1992, “we didn’t have the terror threat. We didn’t have the troops in Iraq.(emphasis added)It's a shame the journalist involved in the interview lacked any curiosity whatsoever. If the reporter's role had been anything other than helping Bill help Hillary, he might have followed up with a question like "In your estimation, Mr. President, when exactly did the terror threat begin?"
I think it might be fairly safe to assume that there was a terror threat some time before the February 1993 World Trade Center Bombing. Maybe Bill Clinton doesn't think the terror threat really began until the Khobar Towers bombing in June of 1996. Certainly Clinton would agree that there was a terror threat when two U.S. Embassies in Africa were bombed in August of 1998.
Could it be that Clinton believed the terror threat began with the Attack on the USS Cole in October of 2000?
Maybe Clinton is right. Maybe when he won election in November of 1992 there was no terror threat that we were aware of. But three months later the threat was there and it grew, virtually unchecked and unchallenged, for the eight years of his presidency.
There are a lot of reasons to not want Hillary Clinton to be president. Her husband's legacy of feckless defense of the nation is another.
I have RSS feeds bookmarked in eight categories containing 173 RSS feeds. News, Weather, Blogs, MuNu, Objectivists, Marketing Blogs, Apple and Cartoons.
Today, the authors of the first feed that went into the cartoons category announced that they are retiring. Sadly, Cox & Forkum is closing shop.
With mixed emotions I announce: John and I will no longer be producing editorial cartoons. John will continue posting his work at his blog, John Cox Art, and he and I will continue working together on various projects, but there will be no more regularly scheduled editorial cartoons. The Web site will remain running indefinitely, as a means to market our books and as an archive of our work.I have always loved editorial cartooning and if I could draw at all I would be tempted to try my hand at it myself. But I know there is no way could I equal the work I have enjoyed from Cox & Forkum.
Thank you, gentlemen. It has been a pleasure and I wish you well.
September 25, 2007
Subject: You, me, a TV, and a bowl of chips
September 22, 2007
Ultimately, rising seas will likely swamp the first American settlement in Jamestown, Va., as well as the Florida launch pad that sent the first American into orbit, many climate scientists are predicting.***
Rising waters will lap at the foundations of old money Wall Street and the new money towers of Silicon Valley. They will swamp the locations of big city airports and major interstate highways.***
Storm surges worsened by sea level rise will flood the waterfront getaways of rich politicians — the Bushes' Kennebunkport and John Edwards' place on the Outer Banks. And gone will be many of the beaches in Texas and Florida favored by budget-conscious students on Spring Break.
Few of the more than two dozen climate experts interviewed disagree with the one-meter projection. Some believe it could happen in 50 years, others say 100, and still others say 150.***
Sea level rise is "the thing that I'm most concerned about as a scientist," says Benjamin Santer, a climate physicist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California.
And it's not just a rising ocean that is the problem. With it comes an even greater danger of storm surge, from hurricanes, winter storms and regular coastal storms, Boesch said. Sea level rise means higher and more frequent flooding from these extreme events, he said.
All told, one meter of sea level rise in just the lower 48 states would put about 25,000 square miles under water, according to Jonathan Overpeck, director of the Institute for the Study of Planet Earth at the University of Arizona. That's an area the size of West Virginia.
The amount of lost land is even greater when Hawaii and Alaska are included, Overpeck said.
The Environmental Protection Agency's calculation projects a land loss of about 22,000 square miles. The EPA, which studied only the Eastern and Gulf coasts, found that Louisiana, Florida, North Carolina, Texas and South Carolina would lose the most land. But even inland areas like Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia also have slivers of at-risk land, according to the EPA.
That's a lot of doom for one short global warming story. I mean it's enough to make one start riding a bicycle to work. But then I told you there was a twist.
It will happen regardless of any future actions to curb greenhouse gases, several leading scientists say. And it will reshape the nation.***
"We're going to get a meter and there's nothing we can do about it," said University of Victoria climatologist Andrew Weaver, a lead author of the February report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in Paris. "It's going to happen no matter what — the question is when."This is so against the doctrine of the Church of Global Warming that those involved are probably going to be excommunicated from The Consensus. This denies the central tenant of the Church that all must obey and live their lives not as many environmentalists do but as they say. If the disaster cannot be stopped - there is no reason for the people to obey.
So the next time someone starts to lecture you about how you should change your life to help fight global warming, just shrug your shoulders and in your most fatalist tone ask "Why bother?"
September 21, 2007
What this means for you my devoted reader is that the look and feel that has become so comfortable and solid - because it's been the same for many many years, is going away. It's time to shake the dust of this thing anyway.
Left to my devices - those being a pernicious combination of no time and a mastery of procrastination - the design of this site would never change. So one day soon you will come here and see one of the default Minx templates. Then over time I will figure out how to make it look like mine.
September 16, 2007
I began keeping records yesterday when the high temperature for the day was 77 degrees. Today the temperature plunged to a record setting 75 degrees.
In other news...
It has been reported that based on satellite observations levels of Arctic Ice have reached record lows. Leading some anonymous scientist to suggest that
the whole of the Arctic could be ice-free by 2030, far sooner than previously predicted.
The current ice levels break a record low set in 2005. Scientists have been using satellite imagery to accurately track Arctic ice levels since 1978.
September 15, 2007
1. Is your second toe longer than your first?
No. My toes were the inspiration for that cell phone commercial.
2. Do you have a favorite type of pen?
O.K. I work for a company that makes pens. Millions of pens. I don't have a favorite. They're just pens.
3. Look at your planner for March 14, what are you doing?
Apparently I'm doing nothing that day. Maybe I'll take that day off.
4. What color are your toenails usually?
Before or after a shower?
5. What was the last thing you highlighted?
That question so I could make the type bold.
6. What color are your bedroom curtains?
Blue. No - green?
7. What color are the seats in your car?
8. Have you ever had a black and white cat?
We have a black cat. It may have a white spot on it somewhere.
9. What is the last thing you put a stamp on?
There are still one or two bills a year - mostly town taxes that can't be paid online.
10. Do you know anyone who lives in Wyoming?
No but I bet I know someone who knows someone who knows someone who does.
11. Why did you withdraw cash from the ATM the last time?
Umm... I needed some cash.
12. Whose is the last baby that you held?
My son. Who is now seven
13. Unlucky #?
Numbers are numbers and they possess no mystical properties.
14. Do you like Cinnamon toothpaste?
Cinnamon is good. I like Cinnamon. I wish someone made a Cinnamon toothpaste that was like brushing your teeth with an Atomic Fireball.
15. What kind of car were you driving 2 years ago?
The same 1996 VW Jetta that I have been driving for the last nine years.
16. Pick one: Miami Hurricanes or Florida Gators?
I think I'd have a much better chance riding out a hurricane in Miami than I would wrestling with an alligator so I'll go with the hurricane.
17. Last time you went to Six Flags?
Never been to Six Flags.
18. Do you have any wallpaper in your house?
Not even a border.
19. Closest thing to you that is yellow?
The tape measure sitting on the table that I forgot to put away.
20. Last person to give you a business card?
It's been so long I can't remember.
21. Who is the last person you wrote a check to?
The doctor for a co-pay
22. Closest framed picture to you?
My daughter at her second birthday party dressed as Madeline.
23. Last time you had someone cook for you?
We had an end of summer dinner at my mother-in-laws a couple of weeks ago. Lobster.
24. Have you ever applied for welfare?
I would rather earn a living wandering the streets with a shopping cart collecting bottles and cans.
25. How many emails do you have?
Work - personal - blog.
26. Last time you received flowers?
27. Do you think the sanctity of marriage is meant for only a man & woman?
I think the traditional concept of marriage has been eroded to the point of being almost worthless. I think it is treated entirely too cheaply and casually. As for the question. Yes.
28. Do you play air guitar?
No, but I am an excellent air drummer and have done a decent air keyboard on occasion.
29. Has anyone ever proposed to you?
My wife did tell me that she wanted me to propose but I had already decided to do so. Does that count?
30. Do you take anything in your coffee?
I like coffee in my coffee. And after that - more coffee.
31. Do you have any Willow Tree figurines?
What the hell are those? Forget it I don't even what to know.
32. What is/was your high school's rival mascot?
Yeah ask me some meaningless trivia about something from 25 years ago just to make me feel old and tired. This is just mean. They were the Tigers by the way.
33. Last person you spoke to from high school?
That conversation would have been at least 15 years ago. It was probably someone I bumped into in a store.
34. Last time you used hand sanitizer?
I am not in the least bit germophobic. I don't think I have ever used a hand sanitizer. And from my observation, the people who do and who go great lengths to protect themselves from germs generally get sick as often as I do.
35. Would you like to learn to play the drums?
No. Then I would know how bad my air drumming really is.
36. What color are the blinds in your living room?
We have curtains that are white. No wait green?
38. Last thing you read in the newspaper?
Something in the little local rag about school re-districting issues.
39. What was the last pageant you attended?
Sometimes work is like a pageant. At least when you ask difficult questions you sometimes get pageant-like answers.
40. What is the last place you bought pizza from?
A little local place. Pizza Mediterranean.
41. Have you ever worn a crown?
Does a paper crown at Burger King count?
42. What is the last thing you stapled?
Stapled some receipts to an expense report.
43. Did you ever drink clear Pepsi?
Never had New Coke either.
44. Are you ticklish?
45. Last time you saw fireworks?
Not counting a few backyard amateur events, it's been a long time.
46. Last time you had a Krispy Kreme doughnut?
Probably over a year.
47. Who is the last person that left you a message & you actually returned it?
That would be my wife.
48. Last time you parked under a carport?
I can't even get my car into my three car garage.
49. Do you have a black dog?
No. None of our dogs are black.
50 . Have you had your mid life crisis yet?
It's on my calendar for March 15.
51. Are you an aunt or uncle?
Five nephews. Three neices.
52. Who has the prettiest eyes that you know of?
That would be my daughter - she has my eyes!
53. What kind of soap or body wash do you use?
The one that's in the soap holder in the shower.
54. Do you remember Ugly Kid Joe?
At some point I would have had to have heard of him to even have a chance at remembering him.
55. Do you have a little black dress?
Yes. But I don't have the right shoes so I never wear it.
September 14, 2007
I knew that wasn't going to happen. I know a thing or two about how the advertising game is played. It's part of what I do for a living.
I knew that the rate card figure of $181,000 for a political ad was for a full page ad on a specific day, on a specific page of the newspaper. I knew that while almost no one would pay full price, no one was going get that big a discount for guaranteed placement. (Sort of.)
I assumed that MoveOn.org bought the ad on the standby rate. They said when and where they wanted it to run, but the Times was under no obligation to give them what they wanted. They could have run the ad a day later in the fashion section. But that wasn't going to happen. The Times was going to give MoveOn.org exactly what it wanted - if not a better position. They were going to do that because they agreed with the ad, and they new it would generate a lot of buzz.
Giuliani is not a stupid man. He probably understands this. If he doesn't you can bet the people he hired to do PR and advertising do. He could have run his counterpoint ad just by calling and purchasing an ad on standby. But there would have been nothing to gain from that. Better to grandstand and make the ignorant believe you are fighting back against a media giant.
The Times had nothing to lose by "agreeing" to Rudy's demand. They just sold another full-page ad on standby. And as they could have done with the MoveOn.org ad, they could have buried it in the least read section of the paper. But that wasn't going to happen. They ran it on the day Rudy requested, but I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't get the page he wanted.
September 13, 2007
The bottom line is, however abhorrent the ad, the Times can charge whoever they want, whatever they want, for advertising space in their pages. They could have given MoveOn.org the space for free. They could have done this without breaking any of the already too numerous regulations of political speech. They could have done this and then turned around and told Rudy that his ad would run at three times their standard rate - it they agreed to run it at all.
Rudy's demand of "equal time" is a cheap and dangerous political stunt. I hope the Times has the guts to tell him to take a hike.
As for the bloggers who are up in arms all I can say is get over it. The Times has an enterprise wide liberal bias. They are not much more than a DNC/MoveOn newsletter when it comes to politics. Are you shocked that they accepted the ad? Are you shocked that they did it at a discount?
They are what they are. They are what they have every right to be. This should not come as a surprise.
Here's a suggestion. If you don't like their politics - stop reading them. Don't read any publication they own. Stop giving them hits. Stop giving them links. Tell all your friends.
September 12, 2007
The rule is, you go to Amazon's advanced search. Type your first name into the title field and post the most interesting title you find.
I found that there are a lot of books by Stephen King and that Amazon includes his name in the title. There were lots of books about Stephen Hawking, and a lot of books by some guy named Stephen Biestly who does books of cross sections of anything and everything. I discovered that there are a lot of books written by guys named Stephen. So at least I can add market saturation to the list of reasons to put off starting that novel.
I went through a lot of pages and came up two. Both sort of about the same guy, but the titles were fun.
The Stephen Experience. It is something not to be missed.
I don't know who Mrs. Jeffries might be, but the Feast of Stephen is relevant. Aside from the reference in the Christmas carol Good King Wenceslas, it is celebrated or acknowledged on December 26. Which just happens to be my birthday. Coincidence? I don't think so.
Hi, Ted. George W. Bush here. Listen I've got a favor to ask. I want you to spend the next few weeks going through a torturous Senate confirmation hearing in which anything you ever said or did will be used against you. I want you to spend a couple of weeks letting the Senate Judiciary Committee attempt to belittle you, humiliate you, embarrass you and generally assassinate your character. And if you get past that all of it is going to happen again in the full Senate and maybe, just maybe, you'll get a confirmation vote. And if you pass that, I want you take over an agency that's gotten a bit of a black eye in the press lately and try to repair it's reputation in the 14 months you'll have the job before the next administration replaces you.
What do you say? Interested?I bet it's going to be a hard sell to find someone willing to do all that. Then again, doesn't Slick Willie has his law license back? Now that would be a confirmation hearing worth watching.
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, whose campaign is returning $850,000 in contributions linked to disgraced fundraiser Norman Hsu, indicated Wednesday that donors who contributed that money could donate to her presidential campaign once again.
"We're not asking that that be done," she said in a teleconference with reporters. "But I believe that the vast majority of those 200-plus donors are perfectly capable of making up their own minds about what they will or won't do going forward."Hillary is not too subtly indicating that she is well aware that the names on the list were placeholder's for Hsu's money. She knows she is giving these people a gift, and she wants a little something back. And it apparently isn't an issue for her that the money is tainted by fraud.
Clinton has raised something like $40 - $50 million in this campaign and it took Norman putting on his Running Hsu's again, and revelations that he defrauded another set of investors to convince her to let go of $850k tied to a convicted felon? It was hard to give it back when as she says the listed donors can always give it back?
Hillary is blinded by her obsession to acquire power. The depth of her corruption exceeds that of even her husband.
September 10, 2007
The Clinton campaign has announced that it will return approximately $850,000 to donors who were part of Norman Hsu's bundled contributions.
Since all the evidence available so far seems to point to Hsu laundering donations from an unknown source, the people on the donor's list about to get a nice check from Hillary refunding to them Hsu's donations.
Who ever fronted Hsu that money **cough*** PRC ***cough*** is probably not going to be very happy. The people who were the pass through donors will be celebrating right up until they get audited.
Col. Jessep: Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Whose gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinburg? I have more responsibility here than you could possibly fathom. You weep for Santiago, and you curse the marines. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know. That Santiago's death, while tragic, probably saved lives. And that my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives. I know deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you don't want me on that wall, you need me on that wall. We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You use them as a punchline.
September 06, 2007
But I could not justify the expense and I did not want to switch my cell phone service to AT&T. And if I wasn't going to use the phone there was no way I could justify buying one just to have a cool iPod.
Now Apple has introduced the iPod touch. If you don't want to watch the video, I can describe it fairly simply. Take an iPhone and remove all of the telephone hardware and software.
If you want a more detailed description, here is what I wrote in February 2005 speculating what might be next for the iPod.
They will take the slimmer 30GB drive and put it in the 40GB case. What will they do with all that extra space?
The AirPort Extreme Card is about half the size of a standard business card (smaller than the previous AirPort Card). With AirPort Extreme-enabled Macintosh systems, it's a snap to exchange files or play multiplayer games at data transfer rates of up to 54 megabits per second. AirPort Extreme uses a brand new wireless standard called 802.11g, which is also backward compatible with the 802.11b standard.
Add in the color screen from the iPod Photo and upgrade the software to be able to surf the iTunes Music Store. Hear a song in the bar at the airport that you really like, hop over to the iTunes store and its yours.
This would also make it compatible with AirTunes. Meaning you could walk into your home or office, the iPod would pick up your wireless network and the music plays via your stereo.
And hey, if its got a wireless card and a color screen why not throw in an iPod version of Safari?
Now that would be cool.With the exception of Cover Flow and the multi-touch screen I think I got it pretty close to right.
It's not covered in the video or on Apple's site that I have seen, but the software on the iPod Touch includes a calendar and contacts. For $299 I can replace my third generation iPod and my old Treo 90.
Now I just need to figure out how to get an extra $300
It's a little known Senate regulation that if you tap your toe and waive your left hand and say "There's no place like the Senate, there's no place like the Senate, there's no place like the Senate," your previously announced resignation goes away. It's called the Dorothy Rule.
I've been thinking about the ever growing list of mistakes Craig has made. The biggest one was when he identified himself as a Senator to the arresting officer.
From the cop's perspective, bathroom sex patrol had to be about the worst possible duty he could have been assigned. Busting a Senator would be high profile enough to end the bathroom detail. It's a fairly safe bet that the Minneapolis Airport bathroom is going to be sex free for some time. In fact if you need to use the facilities for their intended purpose you probably won't have any difficulty finding an empty stall. Just be aware that everyone seeing you walking in or out will be wondering why you were there.
Craig should have identified himself as a lawyer or a farmer (whatever his private occupation once was). He probably would have gotten a warning or at worst a small fine and the whole incident wouldn't have even made the police blotter in the local paper. But Craig assumed his Senatorial position would shield him. He was wrong. Now in a typical display of political integrity, he is unresigning(?) (deresigning?) from the Senate.
The cop? Whatever happens with Senator Craig's quest to clear his name and keep his seat of power, I'm sure he's happy that bathroom duty is over.
September 05, 2007
DEVELOPING STORY: California businessman Norman Hsu, a former New York apparel executive and major contributor to Democratic candidates and causes, failed to appear for a bail reduction hearing Wednesday, leading to speculation that he again is a fugitive from the law, FOX News has learned.
Hsu's attorneys say they do not know his whereabouts, and that their client did not surrender his passport.
Hsu turned himself in to authorities last week after more than 15 years on the run from a felony conviction of grand theft. He admitted to defrauding investors of $1 million in a bogus investment scam.
He failed to appear in court for sentencing on that 1991 conviction, a revelation that prompted high profile Democrats -- including presidential candidate Hillary Clinton -- to return thousands of dollars donated by Hsu.
Refresh this page for story updates.I'm absolutely stunned that 15 years after skipping town his plea deal sentence fro investor fraud, Hsu didn't show up for court. Who would have thought such a thing was possible?
I certainly expected him to willingly hand over his passport. Theoretically it should be a little less useful to him without a Clinton in the White House and Janet Reno in the Justice Department.
Here's a suggestion for the next judge this crook stands before - you might want to consider denying him bail and lock him up pending trial.
September 03, 2007
Along with a good smack-down of green hypocrisy from both sides of the aisle such as:
This is not a politically biased rant; today's nauseating two-facedness crosses party lines (i.e., our own Republican governor Mr. Schwarzenegger, who touts the environmental wonders of a "hydrogen highway" while his leased private jet etches thick carbon trails up and down the California coast). It's much more of an "us versus them" confrontation, "us" being any rich politico looking to protect his or her unfettered access to privilege and luxury, "them" being the suckers (you and me) being asked to sacrifice for the good of our noble caretakers (I must admit, though: Democrats do have a particular gift for projecting the green-bohemian persona while simultaneously snacking high on the food chain).There is a stinging rebuke to the prophets of global warming doom. Which finally gets around to my point:
Our leaders and media pundits aren't panicking about global warming and touting the bliss of going green because they're actually worried about the future of the planet. They're making a fuss because they think global warming is going to affect them. Why, if New York City turns into Venice and LA dries up and Aspen melts, where are we going to host our gala save-the-earth benefit dinners? Why, I could even lose two or three of my six homes!
How do I know this is true? Because, thus far at least, global warming is -- as Al Gore actually gets right -- inconvenient, not a true problem. Sure, it's been a hot summer. Maybe hotter than usual. It might get a little worse, or it might not. We live on a geologically and atmospherically active planet; temperature variations are the norm. Sorry, Boomers: It's not always going to be 75 and sunny the way it was that glorious day at Woodstock. Meantime, turn up the air con a bit, or go for a swim. You're not going to die.
September 02, 2007
Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards said on Sunday that his universal healthcare proposal would require that Americans go to the doctor for preventive care.
''It requires that everybody be covered. It requires that everybody get preventive care,'' he told a crowd sitting in lawn chairs in front of the Cedar County Courthouse. ``If you are going to be in the system, you can't choose not to go to the doctor for 20 years. You have to go in and be checked and make sure that you are OK.(emphasis added)''You're familiar with the expression "cradle to grave socialism?" Edwards doesn't come right out and say it, but he gets as close as any American politician has in a long time.
''The whole idea is a continuum of care, basically from birth to death,'' he said.I've said it before, but it warrants repeating: I prefer to have my health care decisions made by someone who actually gives a damn if I live or die.
I think Edwards needs to go back to suing people. It would make him slightly more respectable.
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