January 29, 2008
Kind of sad, because I won't understand the SNL parodies, having not bothered to watch the debates. On the other hand, I won't have to worry about president McCain, so I still call it a win.
Update: Quote of the day comes from Stephen Green:
Now that I think about it, a McCain/Giuliani ticket might be the first Republican ticket without any actual Republicans on it.
What he said.
Update: Interesting comments in this post over at Bill Quick's site. Not mine, as I'm apparently having a tantrum and should be ignored. Also, I'm quite the potty typist. However, this comment is spot and should be read by everyone:
had a friend who was always right. It was infuriating. For example, I wanted to like Jimmy Carter. He was a southerner and a Christian. How bad could he be? Frank said Carter was basically a mean spirited hick. And he was right.
He told me there were two parties in this country, a government party and an antigovernment party. There are Republicans in both. There are very few antigovernment Democrats. This is why a Republican majority in Congress always loses to the government party super majority. He was right in this too.
John McCain is a member of the government party. he will support such things as the fairness doctrine because he believes bloggers and talk radio are corrupt and his friends in Congress are not. He will cheerfully support continued campaign finance reform because he really believes anti-corruption is a more fundamental value than free speech.
It would be a catastrophe for the country to see Hillary Clinton or Barrack Obama in the White House. I could never vote for them. But McCain shares their membership in the government party. He would be better in the sense of less bad. Thats not enough. There must be some minimum standard and McCain doesnt meet mine.
If John McCain is the Republican nominee, I will vote third party or leave the Presidential selection blank. I am not angry. I do not hate John McCain. I simply cannot vote for him.
Excellent. Now I'll back to flinging poo at the walls.
Update: Excellent discussion/fight over at Rachel Lucas' site. Bill Whittle , someone who I respect greatly, weighs in with several thoughtful posts with which I could not disagree more.
There are plenty of people who think McCain is a fine candidate. I worry about those people, but I know that they exist. However, there seems to be large number of people who think that he's worth nominating because "he can win". Remember Kerry in 2004? How did that work out for the Democrats? In any event, that line of reasoning is flawed because McCain cannot win in the general and you're off your rocker if you think differently. In fact, it's absolutely need more meds and a padded room batshit crazy.
Look, you want to vote for someone because you think they can win, you might as well vote for Hillary or wear a New England Patriots jersey.
You know who that benefits? That's right: Mitt Romney.
January 28, 2008
Allow me to explain.
In 1986, my mother and I owned a small business, a combination ice cream shop and bakery. One of the other businesses in the strip mall was a tanning salon and she offered all of us merchants a deep, deep discount to use her place. I had been in an 8:00 a.m. class that morning and had a break until around 2-ish or so. A good friend of mine wanted to head to the tanning booth and I offered to drive, figuring that I could get a discount for her while taking advantage of a little radiation drenched snooze time. We got there, I put on the radio headphones, climbed into the tanning booth and drifted off. I was startled awake by the horrific news bulletin. I lay there for a few minutes more listening to the updates and then headed home to catch the news. It was a bad, bad day. As it happens, I vaguely remembered the Apollo mission where 3 astronauts died on the launch pad. I say vaguely because I was wee little child at the time. In any event, the Challenger disaster will stay with me until I lose what little wits I possess.
January 25, 2008
Anyway. Stephen Green
livedrunkblogged the event. Some of his comments are quite insightful:
7:14pm To Romney: Are these other jokers really tax cutters? Again, Paul got stiffed. Again, Romney appears stiff. You know what bugs me about Romney? If his hair were even only slightly curly, youd swear he was a Viagra-laced penis. The man is erect.
7:14.5pm Mormon Erectus.
7:27pm Once you start to think of Romney as a six-foot-tall erect penis, you just cant see him any other way. I mean, watch the guy with that in mind and tell me Im wrong. Were the party of fiscal responsibility. Bulging, thrusting fiscal responsibility.
7:44pm The Giant Man Penis has some penetrating insights on China and the economy.
7:56pm Giuliani just accused Romney of being too lawyerly. Which is probably true, especially if the lawyer in question is a six-foot man penis.
8:31pm The six-foot man-penis is running on his record, and his record is stiffly pro-life and anti-gay. Very stiffly anti-gay. Suspiciously stiffly and handsomely anti-gay.
Good times, good times.
The British are feeling the pinch in relation to recent terrorist threats and have raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved". Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross". Londoners have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz began in 1940 and tea supplies all but ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to "A Bloody Nuisance". The last time the British issued "A Bloody Nuisance" warning level was during the great fire of 1666.
Also, the French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide". The only two higher levels in France are "Collaborate" and "Surrender". The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.
It's not only the British and French who are on a heightened level of alert. Italy has increased the! alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing". Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides".
The Germans also increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniforms and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbor" and "Lose".
Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual, and the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels .
The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.
January 24, 2008
"It's not something I ever would have considered," Davis told the Daily News during a break in production Friday. "My departure was very bad; it was a decision I didn't understand, why it had been made. I didn't understand why it was done in a harsh manner. I was pretty hurt by the people who were running TLC at the time."
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that getting smashed and shoving your hooters around in public may not be best public face. Not that I'm opposed to cute drunk women squeezing their boobs for me. Actually, it was only through the aid of the divine substance known as alcohol that any women would actually look at me in college. If any had shoved their breasts in my face, it would have been a bonus. Unrealistic and delusional of course, but still a bonus.
You know what? Go ahead: nominate McCain. All that time and energy I would have normally wasted during an election year will be freed up. I can spend more time with my family, or doing odd jobs around the house. Hell, licking clean all of the bathrooms in Grand Central Station would look more appealing than watching the party commit Mac-icide.
Update: Mike at Cold Fury nails it, as usual:
Sure, the current GOP candidates are in fact perfectly reasonable choices for Democrats, mushy-middle Republicans, and other liberals. Conservatives, federalists, and libertarians, youll get nothing and if folks who agree with the Anchoress have their way, youll damned well like it, too. Now get back in line and stop sniveling.
Look, contrary to the snide, insulting assertions of childishness and petulance from the anybody-GOP-will-do crowd, nobody is looking for perfect, and nobody expects it, either. What we are looking for is an actual conservative: someone to vote for instead of against. With teh Fred! hanging it up and nobody ever said he was perfect, either, by the way; his since-recanted support for McCain-Feingold was troublesome, to say the least the GOP simply does not have one on offer this year.
Since McCain is perfectly willing to countenance disregarding the First Amendment; Romney and Rudy are ditto on the Second; Hucklebee is a perfect storm of anti-Federalist self-contradiction; and all of them have been pro-illegal immigration and amnesty until required politically to do that most awkward of dances, the Politico Flop I have to wonder: are there any bedrock conservative principles at all that you GOP-firsters arent willing to sell out on?
But just because the GOP offers up 12 percent less liberal excrement doesnt mean it isnt still a shit sandwich. And some of us dislike the taste enough to decline the damned thing when the GOP lifts the cover off the latest steaming pile on the same old tarnished, filthy platter.
Update: Okay, this from Joe is too good not to excerpt:
Perhaps had you Republicans thought about giving your natural base a candidate they could vote for a little sooner, your party wouldnt be imploding. But go ahead: you geniuses keep right on pandering to the mushy middle, the unprincipled, the undecided. Keep right on ignoring the folks who brought your party back from near extinction in the post-Nixon years. Make sure your candidates dont try to run a campaign outside the parameters set by your sworn enemies, the media. Use Fred as your object lesson of what happens to candidates who dont bow at the progressives media altar, and play by the other sides rules. Show your ever-dwindling supporters how good little bitches let the other guy set the agenda and frame the issues. And whatever you do, dont vary the lockstep march down the Iwannabea Dem trail lest the lemmings see the cliff youre leading them over before you reach it.
Youve learned nothing at all from Reagan or the Contract with America. Youve been cheek-and-jowl with the Democrats at the taxpayers feeding trough for so long now that not only do you look and sound just like them, you want to be them. To paraphrase a great American, I didnt leave the Republican party, the Republican party left me.
And so you bloody fools are going to suffer a historic defeat: worse than Bob Doles embarassment, maybe even worse than Mondales disgrace. Congratulations, youve certainly earned it. Unfortunately, its the nation that will pay.
Final update- and this time, I mean it!: I've seen lots of bloggers- who shall remain nameless- accuse me of whining, pouting and being a brat in general because I won't vote for a liberal RINO over a liberal Democrat. They (you know who they are) say that I'm pissed off because I won't get the perfect candidate. Allow to respond fully:
1) I haven't had the opportunity to vote for my ideal candidate once. Ever. And this will be the 7th presidential campaign in which I could legally vote.
2) I don't plan to take my ball and go home. I will vote in the general election, I just won't be voting for McCain or [insert Democrat here]. Third party candidates exist and, your pedanticism notwithstanding, I have the right to vote for whomever I want including, but not limited to, me. My vote won't be wasted, it will simply be used however I see fit.
3) Blow me.
4) Seriously. Fucking blow me, you sanctimonious suckers of big swinging GOP dicks. You want to keep bending over and taking it up the ass while screaming that the other guy/gal is worse, go right ahead. But don't presume to lecture me on how much better the RINO assfuck is than the one the Dems are sure to inflict on me.
5) I need a beer. Guess I'll go home and brew a new batch tonight.
What do you mean, #5 doesn't belong in that list? It's not a perfect list, but it's the only one here. Why are you looking for a perfect list instead of taking what's here?!
John McCain is Bob Dole minus the charm, conservatism and youth. Like McCain, pollsters assured us that Dole was the most "electable" Republican. Unlike McCain, Dole didn't lie all the time while claiming to engage in Straight Talk.
January 22, 2008
In ABC's New Hampshire debate, McCain said: "Why shouldn't we be able to reimport drugs from Canada?" A conservative's answer is:
That amounts to importing Canada's price controls, a large step toward a system in which some medicines would be inexpensive but many others new pain-relieving, life-extending pharmaceuticals would be unavailable. Setting drug prices by government fiat rather than market forces results in huge reductions of funding for research and development of new drugs. McCain's evident aim is to reduce pharmaceutical companies' profits. But if all those profits were subtracted from the nation's health care bill, the pharmaceutical component of that bill would be reduced only from 10 percent to 8 percent and innovation would stop, taking a terrible toll in unnecessary suffering and premature death. When McCain explains that trade-off to voters, he will actually have engaged in straight talk.
There are decent, intelligent people who believe that equity or efficiency or both are often served by government setting prices. In America, such people are called Democrats.
McCain says he would nominate Supreme Court justices similar to Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts and Sam Alito. But how likely is he to nominate jurists who resemble those four: They consider his signature achievement constitutionally dubious.
When the Supreme Court upheld McCain-Feingold 5-4, Scalia and Thomas were in the minority. That was before Alito replaced Sandra Day O'Connor, who was in the majority. Two years later, McCain filed his own brief supporting federal suppression of a right-to-life group's issue advertisement in Wisconsin because it mentioned a candidate for federal office during the McCain-Feingold blackout period prior to an election. The court ruled 5-4 against McCain's position, with Alito in the majority.
And you want this person to be the standard bearer of the GOP? Crap, this party uber alles mentality is what makes me barf at the current state of the Democratic party. For the record, the GOP is in its current sorry state because of this type of action by voters. As the Republicans have become more and more like Democrats, people have continued to vote for them. There's a word for this: enabling. Now they know that they can take you for granted because hey, the other guy/gal is worse. Well screw that. I will not be party to voting for someone whose signature piece of legislation these last few years is one which curtails my 1st Amendment right. If this country is headed down, we might as well hit bottom sooner rather than later to get the rebuilding underway.
One final thought: here is Ace's comment on the whole Maverick-cide the party seems intent on committing:
Sure, we're aware of that. But we always, in every cycle, have the option of fairly easily winning an election by nominating a virtual Democrat. But we usually don't, because we don't just want our party to own the White House, but our ideas and our policies too.
I think voting the same hacks into office again and again and getting screwed by them again and again is irrational. Its certainly not the behavior of a rational adult.
So, by my standards, Mark Martin is not rational. Perhaps calling me and my ilk infantile may soothe the cognitive dissonance resulting from his irrationality.
As that Puppy Blending monster would say, indeed.
Update: I should probably make another post at some point, but since this update follows the thread above, I'll be lazy and simply excerpt from Rightwing Sparkle who, by the way, I actually enjoy reading:
Go ahead, hate McCain, Huckabee, or even Romney all you like, but you better dang well vote for them. This is important stuff. Life changing, history changing, nation changing stuff.
So stop whining. Keep fighting for your guy now, but when the nominee is selected, we better all get behind him. If we fail to do that, we fail at our own peril.
Life changing stuff? Like relegating the GOP to permanent minority party status by selling out pretty much all conservative principles? I repeat, this is called enabling. And it's idiotic. Do I want a Democrat in the Whitehouse while the donkeys control the legislative branches? I do not. That's why I won't vote for McCain.
January 17, 2008
After having dug to a depth of 20 meters last year, English scientists found traces of copper wire dating back over 200 years and came to the conclusion that their ancestors already had a telephone network 200 years ago.
Not to be outdone by the English, in the weeks that followed, Scottish scientists dug to a depth of 30 meters, and shortly after, headlines in the UK newspapers read: 'Scottish archaeologists have found traces of 300 year old copper wire and have concluded that their ancestors already had an advanced high-tech communications network a hundred years earlier than the English.'
One week later, The Daily Jigger, an Irish newspaper, reported the following: 'After digging as deep as 40 meters, Paddy McMahon, a self taught archaeologist, reported that he found absolutely nothing'.
Paddy has therefore concluded that 400 years ago Ireland had already gone wireless.
Now that I've dispensed with the Democrats, let's look at the GOP:
1) McCain: honorable service to this country, but I wouldn't vote for him if my hair were on fire. That bastardly repeal of the 1st Amendment of which is the proud co-author disqualifies him from the presidency all by itself. Add in his open borders stance, his anti-tax cutting positions and his overall delight in sticking his finger in the eye of conservatives in general makes him a non-starter as a candidate.
2) Huckabee: we already have one of these currently sitting in the Oval Office. A pro life social con who wants to use the powers of the federal government to force his will on you.
3) Rudy: while I respect his anti-crime work and I admire his ability to clean up what I assumed what was an impossible city to govern, you'll have to work to convince me that a pro-choice, big government guy will be the nominee. Think a pro-choice Bush.
4) Romney: a very astute businessman, which I think this country needs. I find his recent conversion on some issues troubling. And his pander to the auto workers in Michigan about the government partnering with the industry to the tune of 20+ billion a year to bring back jobs that, frankly, won't come back, makes me question his sanity. A good tactical position for the campaign perhaps, but I'm sick and tired of candidates promising more of my hard earned money to some group's boondoggle. Truthfully, I don't care about the whole Mormon thing. While I think that Mormonism is pretty kooky, the vast majority of Mormons that I've met are people I would love to have around. So his religion isn't the issue, it's his other positions that are.
5) Paul: I agree with the vast majority of his domestic positions, but I disagree almost entirely with his foreign policy stance. A guy I work with lived in Ron Paul's district and voted for him every time. He agrees with me on Paul's foreign policy. Please, no screeching from Paulbots about how he's the only true savior of this country. And this recent spate of writings that at best were written by someone with Paul's tacit approval kind of make me think that either he or some of his supporters are people that I don't want to be associated with.
6) Fred Thompson: now Fred says lots of things that I agree with, especially his statements concerning federalism. His record pretty much backs up his conservative positions, but he voted in favor of the McCain-Feingold abomination. Maybe he did so because he believed in the crap theory that money was corrupting the political process, but at the end of the day he voted to abridge our right to free speech. This alone makes him damaged goods in my eyes. Yes, he says now that he was mistaken and he might be entirely honest in that statement, but it's a big leap of faith for me.
Where does this shake out? Well, when I took that quiz which matched my answers with presidential hopefuls, my closest match was Tom Tancredo. Looks like my wish won't come true this year. And while I did vote for the Libertarian candidate Browne in 2000, it looks like the national party has decided that nominating kooks is its best bet to to grow. I think they choose poorly. In any event, I will vote in the primaries here in Virginia -a recent development, as we used to have caucuses(cauci?)- and in the general next November. I just don't for whom I'll be voting. The reality is that I don't think it matters as I believe that the country's electorate has decided to do a swam dive into the abyss this year.
By the way, here's the complete quotation from Asimov's book: "Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain." I think that that, in a nutshell, describes perfectly this election season.
January 16, 2008
According to the plans, Luna Gaia will be a complex divided into linked, studio-apartment-size pods. Situated in a crater to limit its inhabitants' exposure to solar radiation, it would include private and social areas, labs and exercise rooms, and greenhouses in which astronauts could grow the food necessary for a balanced diet. Filters, plants and bacteria will turn wash water and urine into potable water. Algae and other greenery turn carbon dioxide into oxygen. Overall, the group estimates, these systems would make Luna Gaia 90 to 95 percent sustainable, meaning fewer service trips, longer visits and a clearer conscience.
Anyway, the article has some pretty good ideas, but I've got a few questions of my own:
1) Why are they using solar energy to heat water, convert it into steam and then drive a turbine to create electricty? I realize that solar panels aren't horribly efficient, but since you'll be sitting in a no cloudy days, ever, area, you should probably just go straight photovoltaic conversion. Sure, the cells are bulky, but so are replacement parts for turbines, which also do not last forever.
2) They've got the radiation protection worked out, but the scientists just seem to ignore the incoming rock problem. Here on Earth, we've got miles and miles of atmosphere, which eliminates all but the largest meteorites. On the Moon, stuff would just come on in at high velocity. Even a pinhole leak would be enough to kill of the colony. And the moon's surface was excavated by a race of space aliens, it has been bombarded for a long time by enough rocks to make the surface look like a teenager's face. Why not bore into the side of the moon and build the colony mostly underground? Have the cells and solar redirection panels on the crater's edge as designed, but have the habitat protected by the rock already there. As far as I'm aware, the moon isn't seismicly active, so no problem with earthquakes.
In any event, I hope that this stuff gets moving soon. I remember the first moon landing, albeit somewhat dimly, as I was small child at the time. If you had told me around 1972 or so that we not only wouldn't have a moon colony by 2008, but that we wouldn't have gone back to the moon at all, I'd have thought you were nuts. Of course, you may well be insane, but in this one case you are also 100% correct.
January 15, 2008
Thou clouted clay-brained coxcomb.
Thou infectious fool-born gudgeon.
I think that I just made myself cry.
10. Get the local time anywhere
What time is it in Bangkok right now? Ask Google. Enter simply what time is it to get the local time in big cities around the world, or add the locale at the end of your query, like what time is it hong kong to get the local time there.
9. Track flight status
Enter the airline and flight number into the Google search box and get back the arrival and departure times right inside Google's search results.
There's more, of course. Check it out.
January 14, 2008
Update: Tim provide the following extremely positive update:
*WEDNESDAY MORNING UPDATE* Results of Mondays CAT scan are in. There is no spread of the malignancy; zip, zero, zilch. Its entirely localised. Medical science may disagree, but I think credit should go to readers and fellow bloggers. Your thoughts and prayers have eerie powers.
That is absolutely fabulous news.
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