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Sunday, December 26, 2010

Video: When kids try to explain Christmas

Video: When kids try to explain Christmas

via Hot Air's headlines.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Quotation #3

Scrooge was better than his word.  He did it all and infinitely more; and to Tiny Tim, who did not die, he was a second father.  He became as good a friend, as good a master, and as good a man as the good old city knew, or any other good old city, town, or borough in the good old world.  Some people laughed to see the alteration in him, but he let them laugh, and little heeded them; for he was wise enough to know that nothing ever happened on this  globe, for good, at which some people did not have their fill of laughter at the outset; and knowing that such as these would be blind anyway, he thought it quite as well that they should wrinkle up their eyes in grins as have the malady in less attractive form.  His own heart laughed, and that was quite enough for him.

He had no further intercourse with Spirits, but lived upon the Total Abstinence Principle, ever afterwards, and it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge.  May that be truly said of us, and all of us!  And so as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Every One!  
 
~Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol, Stave 6, final lines)

Christmas Quotation #2

Again the Ghost sped on, above the black and heaving sea -- on, on -- until being far away, as he told Scrooge, from any shore, they lighted on a ship.  They stood beside the helmsman at the wheel, the look-out in the bow, the officers who had the watch, dark ghostly figures in their several stations, but every man among them hummed a Christmas tune, or had a Christmas thought, or spoke below his breath to his companion of some bygone Christmas Day, with homeward hopes belonging to it.  And every man on board, waking or sleeping, good or bad, had had a kinder word for another on that day than on any day in the year; and had shared to some extent in its festivities; and had remembered those he cared for at a distance, and had known that they delighted to remember him. 

~Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol, Stave 3)

Christmas quotation #1

Built upon a dismal reef of sunken rocks, some leagues or so from shore, on which the waters chafed and dashed the wild year through, there stood a solitary lighthouse.  Great heaps of sea-weed clung to its base, and storm-birds -- born of the wind one might suppose, as sea-weed from the water -- rose and fell about it, like the waves they skimmed. 

But even here, two men who watched the light had made a fire, that through the loophole in the thick stone wall shed out a ray of brightness over the awful sea.  Joining their horny hands over the rough table at which they sat, they wished each other Merry Christmas in their can of grog; and one of them -- the elder, too, with his face all damaged and scarred with hard weather, as the figure-head of an old ship might be -- struck up a sturdy song that was like a gale in itself. 

~Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol, Stave 3)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Toy Gun Buyback


"In exchange for their toy guns, all the children received wrapped presents that were indisputably not violent — dolls, stuffed animals, and board games like checkers.
Some children were not thrilled with the trade.
Malik Hall, a round-eyed second-grader, looked apprehensive as he stood in line with his favorite toy, a thick, blue gun with plastic sword underneath the muzzle. The 8-year-old was furious when his mother, Amanda, told him he would have to give it up. Yesterday morning, he tried to hide it under his pillow, she said...

Hall said she had no regrets. The 26-year-old mother of six said she has been trying to wean her only son off toy guns for years.

Via Instapundit, who says, "if you had put this scene into a dystopian novel about lefty silliness, it would have seemed too heavy-handed."

Two embassy bombs explode in Rome

Chilean and Swiss embassies.  Links and comments at Hot Air.

Muslim Student Files Complaint Against Teacher … for Talking About Ham

PJM: When parody becomes reality in Spain.

ObamaCare Rationing Begins


"The reason given by the FDA was that the drug does not provide "a sufficient benefit in slowing disease progression to outweigh the significant risk to patients." What risk? These women are dying.

The drug buys them precious time, and the only risk they face is from an FDA saying "pull the plug."

On the same day the FDA channeled Dr. Kevorkian, its European counterpart, the European Medicines Agency, issued a statement approving Avastin for metastatic breast cancer."

How Government Failure Caused the Great Recession

At American.com: The interaction of six government policies explains the timing, severity, and global impact of the financial crisis.

This may be the manliest thing I've ever seen

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Nefarious goings-on at Gitmo

Former Inmate: Jews Used Witchcraft on Guantanamo Prisoners, Made Me Feel a Cat Was Trying to Penetrate Me.

The Net Neutrality Coup

WSJ: The campaign to regulate the Internet was funded by a who's who of left-liberal foundations.

"The Federal Communications Commission's new "net neutrality" rules, passed on a partisan 3-2 vote yesterday, represent a huge win for a slick lobbying campaign run by liberal activist groups and foundations. The losers are likely to be consumers who will see innovation and investment chilled by regulations that treat the Internet like a public utility."

The FCC Should Not Regulate the Internet

CATO: "A premise of net neutrality regulation—and much other regulation—is that consumers can’t be relied on to defend their own interests. Taking that premise, which I don’t, it follows that regulators must step in. But that syllogism skips over an additional premise: that regulators can do a better job."

Wednesday stuff

Monday, December 20, 2010

Your Apps Are Watching You

WSJ: iPhone and Android apps are breaching the privacy of smartphone users.

"An examination of 101 popular smartphone "apps"—games and other software applications for iPhone and Android phones—showed that 56 transmitted the phone's unique device ID to other companies without users' awareness or consent. Forty-seven apps transmitted the phone's location in some way. Five sent age, gender and other personal details to outsiders."

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Asian Megacities, Free and Unfree

At City Journal: one finds the most striking evidence of how politics shapes the new Asian megalopolises in the differences between Seoul, South Korea’s capital, and China’s leading cities. After all, the Korean and Chinese cultures are similar. Both are founded on the hierarchical Confucian philosophy; both have been influenced by Buddhism. But Seoul is democratic, and the political debates of an open society have profoundly influenced its development. China’s cities, by contrast, reflect the autocratic and corrupt rule of the Communist Party.

The combat codpiece

An excellent idea for a Christmas present.

Fox may add musical soundtrack to NFL games

Apparently they tried this out last week - check out the video at the link.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

German Media: Iran Is Stockpiling Shahab 3 Missiles in Venezuela That Can Reach US

Comments and links at Gateway Pundit: "According to Die Welt, Venezuela has agreed to allow Iran to establish a military base manned by Iranian missile officers, soldiers of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and Venezuelan missile officers. In addition, Iran has given permission for the missiles to be used in case of an “emergency”. In return, the agreement states that Venezuela can use these facilities for “national needs” – radically increasing the threat to neighbors like Colombia."

Do you have any property rights?

Cato-Unbound: Against Overlordship.

Thursday stuff

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Video: The worst thing ever recorded in any medium

I can't think of anything to say about this that Allahpundit hasn't said already, and better. 

Ethanol’s Policy Privileges: Heading for History’s Dustbin?


"At the stroke of midnight on December 31 of this year, the 45¢ per gallon Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit (VEETC), commonly known as the blender’s credit, and the 54¢ per gallon tariff on imported ethanol, will expire.
A bipartisan group of 17 senators, led by Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), say it’s time for these special-interest giveaways to go gently into the night. A broad coalition of environmental, taxpayer, hunger, free market, and food industry organizations are urging House and Senate leaders to let the VEETC meet its statutorily appointed fate.

An exciting prospect — for the first time ever, Congress may decide to put the general welfare of consumers and taxpayers ahead of the corporate welfare of the ethanol lobby."

via Instapundit.

Health Reform and the Decline of Physician Private Practice

Dr, Paul Hsieh has links and comments on the subject, including this:
[R]esults from a national survey of 2,400 physicians, only 26% of whom said they would continue practicing the way they are in the next one to three years. The remaining 74% said they would retire, work part-time, close their practices to new patients, become employed and/or seek non-clinical jobs.

Why Do We Have a Central Bank?

WSJ: The Fed has been ceded a degree of operational independence by Congress to conduct monetary policy. That independence is viable only so long as the Fed sticks to conventional monetary policy. If it persists in acting also as a fiscal authority, ordinary citizens and their representatives are going to ask: Why do we have a central bank?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Extended family member hit by IED

We spend a lot of time with my son-in-law's family, the closest of whom is his cousin Jason and Jason's wife Julie.  Julie's brother, Josh, sent this to his mother yesterday:

"today was a bad day mom. two of my marines were hit with ieds. i cant tell
you the specifics yet but know that i am okay. i was 7ft from one of them
when it went off so you might be getting a call or something telling you im
hurt and somewhere getting treatment. dad should have called you and already
told you this. but know that i am perfectly fine and nothing is wrong with
me. i am just mentally scared from watching one of my best friends get blown
up. in time that will heal as well. sleeping tonight wont be easy though.
one of my junior marines lost both his legs above the knee. my buddy lost
his left foot and his right leg was gashed open pretty badly. i had to shove
my hand in his leg to keep him from bleeding out. i fucking hate this war
and i want to come home mom. only a few more months and i think i might be
done with this shit. but we'll see. i love you very much and i miss you.
cant wait to see you when i get home. i love you mom."

Prayers would be appreciated.  Josh is 25 years old.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Politically correct Portland rejected feds who saved city from terrorist attack

Examiner: In 2005, leaders in Portland, Oregon, angry at the Bush administration's conduct of the war on terror, voted not to allow city law enforcement officers to participate in a key anti-terror initiative, the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force.  On Friday, that task force helped prevent what could have been a horrific terrorist attack in Portland.  Now city officials say they might re-think their participation in the task force -- because Barack Obama is in the White House.

The Triumphant Return of Hayek

At Newsweek (?!):

"From Europe to the United States, as voters started to reward candidates focused on fiscal discipline and less government intervention, Keynesianism quickly fell out of favor.

One key exception was U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke. Dissatisfied with the gradual recovery and a high unemployment rate, he let it be known that he thought more stimulus was in order, and realizing that was not in the congressional cards, he decided to take monetary activism to a new level."

Spengler on the Wikileaks diplomatic cables

Read the whole thing.

"The initial reports suggest that the US State Department has massive evidence that Obama's approach - "engaging" Iran and coddling Pakistan - has failed catastrophically. The crisis in diplomatic relations heralded by the press headlines is not so much a diplomatic problem - America's friends and allies in Western and Central Asia have been shouting themselves hoarse for two years - but a crisis of American credibility."

April 11, 1954: The most boring day in the 20th century

Every day something of significance happens, a person is born who is destined for fame, there is an event in the arts or sports, history is created. With 300 million of these facts fed into the “brain” of True Knowledge, Tunstall-Pedoe’s Cambridge company, the computer was asked: “What was the most boring day in the 20th century?

via Hot Air.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Must read: Fascinating story re Stuxnet

Links and comments at Hot Air, but be sure to follow the link to the full story.

"...not only did the coders need a mind-boggling degree of knowledge about the vulnerabilities in more than one software platform, they needed intelligence on Iran’s program so deep that not even the UN had all the details. On top of all that, the worm was programmed to disguise what it was doing so that the engineers on the premises would think the problem with the centrifuges was in the hardware, not the software."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mark Twain on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day, a function which originated in New England two or three centuries ago when those people recognized that they really had something to be thankful for - annually, not oftener - if they had succeeded in exterminating their neighbors, the Indians, during the previous twelve months, instead of getting exterminated by their neighbors, the Indians.  Thanksgiving Day became a habit, for the reason that in the course of time, as the years drifted on, it was perceived that the exterminating had ceased to be mutual and was all on the white man's side, consequently on the Lord's side; hence it was proper to thank the Lord for it and to extend the usual annual compliments.  
~Mark Twain

Lincoln’s Proclamation Establishing Thanksgiving Holiday

From 1863.

Thanksgiving in 1810, 1910, and 2010


via Instapundit.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Gore: U.S. corn ethanol "was not a good policy"

Well, duh.  Think he'll apologize for his part in imposing it?

"He explained his own support for the original programme on his presidential ambitions.

"One of the reasons I made that mistake is that I paid particular attention to the farmers in my home state of Tennessee, and I had a certain fondness for the farmers in the state of Iowa because I was about to run for president.""

Obama's foreign policy would have made sense in 1983

Jackson Diehl: So has nothing changed in the past quarter-century? In fact, almost everything has - especially when it comes to nuclear arms control and Israel's national objectives. What hasn't changed, it seems, is Barack Obama - who has led his administration into a foreign policy time warp that is sapping its strength abroad and at home.

Monday stuff

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Gloria Allred On TSA Pat-Down

Video.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: "Did they touch your body parts?"

GLORIA ALLRED: "Yeah, they did and it was a first time anybody touched them in a long time and frankly, I liked it," Gloria Allred."

Inside the White House the night of Nov. 22, 1963

The Miami Herald. 

By a twist of fate, Miami native David Pearson -- then a Peace Corps press officer, later the operator of a South Florida public relations and marketing firm -- was called to help at the White House on the evening of Nov. 22, 1963, the day John F. Kennedy was shot. His observations, first published in 1983, are reprinted here in abridged form, on the eve of the 47th anniversary of JFK’s assassination.

Lameduck Iowa Governor Gives State Workers $200 Million Pay Raise

No negotiation - the state accepted the union's proposal as is.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Under ObamaCare, some animals are more equal than others

On the growing number of businesses getting waivers from the requirement to participate in Obamacare, some comments and links at HotAir's Greenroom, and a link to a video on the subject at Protein Wisdom.

Radiation Risks from TSA Scanners?

Radiologist/blogger Dr. Paul Hsieh says no (he's not addressing the privacy concerns) and has comments and links on the subject.

California's environmental arrogance

California seems intent on traveling a road to self-destruction paved with government mandates and regulations that drive businesses and jobs out of state while discouraging new job creation. A prime job-killing, business-punishing scheme is the insistence on achieving radical environmental goals, despite their real-world economic liabilities.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

How the EPA cripples the American economy

Reason: It’s not China that’s responsible for American job losses; it’s Washington’s fault for shutting down whole industries and preventing new jobs from being created.

China leads attack on US at G20 summit

Backed by Germany, Brazil and other G20 powers, China accuses the US of forcing the dollar down to trade its way back to prosperity, and says this could trigger a 1930s-style trade war if other countries respond in kind.

Ethanol Could Go on GOP Chopping Block

"Contrary to popular belief, ethanol fuel does little or nothing to increase our energy security or stabilize fuel prices," wrote Kenneth Green, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. "Instead, it will increase greenhouse gas emissions, local air pollutant emissions, fresh water scarcity, water pollution (both riparian and oceanic), land and ecosystem consumption, and food prices."

via Lucianne.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

European biofuel plan will cause rise in carbon emissions

Links and comments at Legal Insurrection:  The study, from the Institute for European Environmental Policy, found that far from being 35 to 50 per cent less polluting, as required by the European Directive, the extra biofuels will be twice as bad for the environment.

STD? There's an app for that - just pee into your cell phone

British health officials are hard at work on a new app that will allow users to pee into their cell phones and find out within minutes if they have an STD.
 
via Hotair.com

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Day The Earmarks Stood Still: Republican senators propose a low-pork diet.

The author formerly known as Dr. Zero: "Republicans will have a fairly low bar to hurdle in finding places to cut spending, since Democrats felt the gigantic State contained exactly zero dollars of excess fat, and never tired of feeding it billion-dollar bon bons."

Big Brother: New Traffic Camera Checks Taxes, Insurance

Investors.com: "With cameras becoming cheaper and software ever-more sophisticated, governments are likely to rely more and more on Big Brother-type surveillance in the coming years. It’s a lot cheaper than hiring new police officers, with their budget-busting pensions and other benefits."

US Companies Welcome Power Shift

Financial Times:  "...the development could lead to less regulation, taxation and government oversight."

Monday, November 8, 2010

California: The Lindsay Lohan of States


via Althouse.

Monday links

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Attack of the food police

The government tells us what medicines we may take and what recreational substances we may ingest, but when it comes to food, we decide what goes down our gullets. Gun-owning barbecuers coexist peacefully with Humane Society vegans. To paraphrase the old adage, your freedom ends where my stomach begins.

But not everyone is keen on emancipated eating. Public health puritans, appalled at the spread of excess weight, think the government should forcefully guide our dining choices. And when it comes to policy, they are getting a place at the table.

Hitchens: A guide to cancer etiquette

I love the exchange at the beginning of this story.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Keeping Uncle Sam Out of Your Amazon Account

Time: The war over sales taxes has North Carolina (I'm sure others will follow) seeking data from Amazon on the specific items delivered to any NC address.  A federal court has ruled against NC, for now.

Hayek vs. Keynes-- The Sequel


via Newsalert.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

'Walking corpse syndrome': mental disorder when people think they're zombies

Socialism and Reality

Must read (the whole thing) at American Thinker.

"Despite the history of failure, every new generation of adherents to socialist ideology believe that they can make this arrangement work and maintain their unwritten agreement with the citizenry.

But the reality is that they cannot, as the economic engine of capitalism will not continue to produce wealth if it is increasingly put under the thumb of bureaucrats and central planners inevitably attempting not only to institute governmental management of the economy, but also to regulate the day-to-day activities of all citizens. The motivation of the producer class will be stifled, and they will either drop out, join the dependent class, or simply move on to other, more hospitable countries -- a reality more in play than ever in today's global economy.

In due course, centralized governments will, as history has shown, turn to excessive and unsustainable borrowing, as well as inflation, to finance their societal obligations. The contract between the statists and the citizens who were promised cradle-to-grave security cannot be maintained, as the economic underpinning of this arrangement will quickly erode."

A Coming Government Shutdown?


"...the presumed GOP congressional majority and the party’s somewhat likely Senate majority will be spending much of the next two years in a knock-down, drag-out fiscal fight with President Obama, his party, and his press apparatchiks. With the battle lines already being drawn, it becomes difficult to imagine how this gets resolved without a repeat of the federal government shutdown the country experienced in 1995. This wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing, but if it happens, the outcome needs to be different from 15 years ago."

Friday (posted on Sunday) stuff

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Today in history: Earth was created 6,014 years ago

Allowing for a combination of subsequent calendar adjustments, today is - according to Bishop James Ussher (1581-1656) - the 6,014th anniversary of the creation of the earth at 9 A.M. on 26 October 4004 B.C.

The Left's war on the economy

Obama may be losing the War on Terror, but his War on the Economy is headed full speed ahead. The joblessness, the unemployment rolls and an economic in which the only people still making money are in the government, in public sector unions or on Wall Street is no accident. It was the intended result all along. 

...

Contrary to the liberal worldview, most Americans didn’t want to be on the dole, they wanted a working economy. And the popular wisdom among them today is that Obama is a well-meaning failure. Most Americans will go to the polls and vote based on that popular wisdom. They generally don’t hate Obama, yet they don’t think that he or his party are up to the job either. 

But Obama didn’t fail. Obama succeeded. He succeeded at doing exactly what he was supposed to do. Damage the American economy in order to undermine the country’s status as a Great Power and the independence of the average American from his government. The goal of this party and this man was never to oversee an economic recovery. And why would it have been? Obama and his allies on the left believe that a prosperous economy is the root of all evil, and the chief obstacle to the people embracing a government mandate for socialism.

For many over 55, recession strips away savings, jobs

USA Today: A growing number of Americans age 55 and older have put their retirement dreams on hold as they face a dismal financial reality: The recession has forced many into unemployment, stripped away years of their savings or dramatically reduced incomes during what they had hoped would be their final high-earning years.

Greece Likely to Default By 2013 as Debts Remain

Greece is likely to default over the next three years because budget-cutting won’t be enough to reduce the nation’s debt burden, Pacific Investment Management Co. Chief Executive Officer Mohamed A. El-Erian said.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

In Chicago, stimulus weatherization money buys shoddy work, widespread fraud

 
Department inspectors visited 15 homes that were being weatherized by CEDA and paid for by stimulus funds. "We found that 14 of the 15 homes…failed final inspection because of poor workmanship and/or inadequate initial assessments," the report says. In eight of the homes, CEDA had come up with unworkable and ineffective plans -- like putting attic insulation in a house with a leaky roof. In ten of the homes, "contractors billed for labor charges that had not been incurred and for materials that had not been installed." The report calls billing problems "pervasive," with seven of ten contractors being cited for erroneous invoicing. And the department found "a 62 percent final inspection error rate" when CEDA inspectors reviewed their own work.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Rep. Jim Oberstar, D-Minn., has just one donor from his district


"With a potentially competitive race developing back home in Minnesota’s 8th District, Transportation Committee Chairman Jim Oberstar collected a contribution from just one resident of the district between June 22 and Sept. 30, according to a federal election report filed Wednesday.

Jane Robbins of Pine City gave Oberstar $500 on Aug. 22.

Other than that, all of his contributions came from political action committees, Native American tribes or individual donors in other districts and states."

Oberstar is behind:

The infrastructure bill: FedEx vs. UPS

Friday stuff

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

President Obama and Education Politics As Usual


President Obama has seemingly made an entire mountain range out of his Race-to-the-Top reform molehill, while he’s gotten more or less a free pass on all he’s done to enrich the status quo. And now, with big midterm losses looming for his party, he appears to be reverting to one of the easiest political ploys in the book: Claim the GOP will cut funding to education and, in so doing, hurt innocent children and cripple the nation’s economic future. 

Check out the graph below to see how much all that spending has helped "the children":

Post Office Shows Where U.S. Is Headed

Bloomberg reports:

To understand where the advocates of big government will take this country, look at the U.S. Postal Service.

Start with the fact the Postal Service is a great jobs machine, employing 712,000 people at an average annual compensation, including wages and benefits, of $83,000. And those hefty pay checks are a great source of political contributions for Democrats. In 2010, almost 90 percent of the approximately $4 million contributed to campaigns by postal unions went to Democrats. Take a guess where much of the opposition to reform comes from.

But high-priced labor, which accounts each year for about 80 percent of costs, leads to high-priced mail services, and even higher costs for taxpayers. Over the past 10 years, the price of a stamp has risen from 33 cents to 44 cents, exceeding the inflation rate at a time when computerization should have been leading to big cost savings.

Boehner's 'Plan B' for ObamaCare

When it comes to repealing ObamaCare, plan B for John Boehner (R., Ohio) will be more important than plan A

Plan A, of course, is to repeal the new health-care law whole hog. If Republicans take the House in next month's elections, they will surely introduce—and pass—a bill to do so. The question is: What happens when that bill then goes nowhere in the Senate, where even a Republican majority will not be large enough to rebuff a filibuster, much less override a presidential veto?

That's where plan B comes in.

It's the birthday of the US Navy

On 13 October 1775, the Continental Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, authorized the procurement, fitting out, manning, and dispatch of two armed vessels to cruise off our coasts to interdict British supply ships.

The beginning of the Navy hymn:

Eternal father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bidd'st the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep;
O hear us when we cry to thee,
For those in peril on the sea. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Does Paying Your Mortgage Make You a Good Person, or a Stupid Person?

Time Mag.

10 years ago today: The USS Cole

Cassy Fiano:  "10 years ago today, two Al Qaeda terrorists pulled alongside the USS Cole during a routine refueling in Aden, Yemen and detonated a suicide bomb...

17 sailors were killed. 39 more were wounded. The 17 sailors who died left behind 11 children." 

Of course, the Obama administration has halted prosecution of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, the alleged coordinator of the attack.

Who's Against Library Volunteers? Teachers Unions

Boston Globe: The teachers’ union in Bridgewater and Raynham has filed a labor grievance that could block volunteers from keeping the school district’s libraries open.

WaPo notices public pension problems

Years behind the rest of the world.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Woman fends off bear attack with zucchini

Someone finally made use of one of those zucchini "clubs" that grow too big to be edible.

Average Government Worker Receives 85 Percent Higher Pay, Benefits than Private Employees


The typical federal worker received a salary of more than $79,000 in 2008, with benefits raising total annual compensation to more than $119,000. The typical private sector worker received pay of about $50,000, with total compensation just under $60,000.

Segway owner dies on Segway

Read the whole thing - quite a fascinating guy.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Rampant 2008 Voter Fraud in Houston


"Most of the findings focused on a group called Houston Votes, a voter registration group headed by Steve Caddle, who also works for the Service Employees International Union. Among the findings were that only 1,793 of the 25,000 registrations the group submitted appeared to be valid. The other registrations included one of a woman who registered six times in the same day; registrations of non-citizens; so many applications from one Houston Votes collector in one day that it was deemed to be beyond human capability; and 1,597 registrations that named the same person multiple times, often with different signatures."

Sounds just like ACORN.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Health insurers drop coverage for children ahead of new rules


"...extending such coverage in child-only policies “provides a very powerful incentive for a parent to wait until their child becomes very sick before purchasing coverage.”

Zirkelbach added that in 2014, when similar protections kick in for all individuals with preexisting conditions, virtually all Americans will be required to get health insurance.

With no such mandate currently in place, however, the result over the next several years could be that the pool of children insured by child-only plans would rapidly skew toward those with expensive medical bills, either bankrupting the plans or forcing insurers to make up their losses by substantially increasing premiums for all customers. And Zirkelbach said the effect could be compounded if only a few plans remain in the market."

Friday, September 17, 2010

New US Embassy Adopts Defenses From Middle Ages

To be built in London.

Leaked Memo: DHS Contemplates Amnesty By Executive Fiat

At American Spectator: "Remember the amnesty memos? The leaked documents that showed officials in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) agency discussing an Obama administration end-run around Congress to implement an administrative amnesty for untold numbers of illegal immigrants? It turns out that USCIS wasn't alone."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Must read: No More Control

Dr. Zero hits one out of the park. 

"Political control is what’s killing us.  It is expressed in hundreds of ways: high tax rates with carefully tailored exceptions, massive bailouts, laws rigged to favor government-controlled industries, restrictions on resource development, and a vast poppy field of subsidies and penalties.  The Democrats have added thousands of pages of fabulously expensive legislation since Obama took office.  Two messages echo through those pages: Obey and be rewarded.  Resist and be punished."

Is your child a "prehomosexual"?

At Scientific American.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

ObamaCare's Fatal Flaw?

At American Thinker, an argument that the potential elimination of a personal mandate (via lawsuit by Virginia and/or several other states) could render the whole of Obamacare unconstitutional because there was no severance clause included.

"If Virginia prevails, it leaves the question of what happens to the rest of the ObamaCare statute. This is where the concept of severance comes in. Normally, all comprehensive laws contain a boilerplate severance clause: it says that if any portion of the law is found to be unconstitutional, that portion is severed from the rest of the law -- that is, the rest of the law stands.

But ObamaCare contains no severance clause."