Wednesday, December 31, 2008
I'm not going to attempt to sum up 2008. Every damn news outlet is doing that (in place of running real news stories).
We here at EBM (myself and the three cats) wish all of the readers of this blog a happy, healthy, sane and prosperous New Year!
(Oh, and catnip for all kitties)
There are a number of ways that things could get a hell of a lot worse. Hopefully that won't happen. But saying "there's nowhere to go but up" shows an astonishing lack of awareness of how bad things could become.
Self-centered might work. There are a lot of adult-level words, such as "assknob," "douchenozzle," "shitheel," "fucktard" and others.
"International war criminal" would be three words.
We can try the "note song," or whatever the hell it was called.
The first line was: "Do, a deer, a female deer." Ecch. That hardly touches an urban population.
So let's try this: "Do, a mistake, a stupid mistake."
"Re, the guy who jacked my car."
More later, and suggestions are welcome.
He ran away and is now in jail.
Way to go, lady!
(Yes, I know the story didn't say he was trying to rape her. I figure that since he was stark naked, broke into her house, and ws pushing her face down into a chair, that he wasn't collecting donations for the Red Cross.)
A few are outright disturbing. And no, I am not going to give examples. But if I take them at face value, there are some pretty sick people out there who seriously need professional help.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
The answer is pretty much self evident that, yes, he is indeed a world-class fuckup and a failure. His presidency has done almost as much economic damage to this country as would have been done by an all-out launch by the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces, other than the blast effects and fallout.
Mrs. Bush: Bush presidency not a failure
Sorry, Laura, you married a jerkoff. Deal with it.
The show is apparently going to be about as much of a work of propaganda as was the F.B.I., which, you might note, also aired on ABC. That show also was a running ad for Ford, so it was two, two, two works of propaganda in one!
No doubt someone will embed ads in this latest governmental puff piece, too.
For me, the saddest part about the terrorist attacks of 9-11 is the long-term impact on the presidency of George W. Bush. As Bush prepares to leave office, in my opinion, the presidency of George W. Bush was hijacked as surely as the four planes that crashed on that fateful September morning seven years ago.Wah-motherfucking-Wah!
Never mind the impact on the nearly 3,000 families who lost loved ones on 9/11/01.
Never mind the long-term impact on the men and women who worked on the Pile to remove the wreckage and who relied on the lies of the Bush EPA that the air was safe.
Never mind the long-term impact on the diminished freedoms and liberties of the American people.
Pay no heed to the long-term impact of trillions of dollars in debt that Bush ran up in his two clusterfucks of a war.
Disregard the trashing of America's reputation as a nation of laws due to the approval by the White House of the use of torture.
Ignore the impact of the deaths of over 5,000 Americans in Iraq and the maiming of tens of thousands more.
Forget about the fact that over 100,000 Iraqis have been killed and millions turned into refugees thanks to Bush's war in Iraq.
Ignore all of that shit, for by the hammer of Grabthar, by the suns of Warvan, the saddest is the (sob) damage done to Bush's reputation! (wail)
Where in the Universe do they find such toadies? Does Karl Rove have a factory producing them?
(H/T to Raw Story)
In Russian, the name would probably be Департамент Безопасности Родины, or DBP. And since those folks have proven themselves to be about as efficient, as law-abiding, as respectful of human rights and and as people-friendly as a Soviet-era bureaucracy, that is how I will refer to them.
(Yes, I know that отдел is the most common word for ""department," but that seems to apply more to department stores, entities which DBP is nowhere near close to being as competent as, I'm sticking with DBP.)
So a few weeks ago, I was home on a nice weekend day. It was a little cold; I loaded the pre-heater and its gear into the car along with my flight stuff. I had to pump up the tires and then began my preflight.
Now for a necessary detour into a little discourse on engines:
Other than experimental airplanes, piston-engined airplanes have their spark plugs fired by magnetos, which is a very old technology not found in cars since fuel injection and advanced emission controls came into wide use. Magnetos don't require an external electrical supply; they are little generators powered by the rotation of the engine's crankshaft (that's why you can push-start an old car). Magnetos feed electricity to the distributors and the rotor of the distributor routes power to the spark plugs. Airplanes have two spark plugs per cylinder, as well as two distributors and two magnetos. That is so that there can be no "single-point failure" of the ignition system.
Magnetos are always "on." What they have is a wire that shorts out the generator part of the magneto. When you turn an engine with magnetos "off", what you really are doing is closing a switch that is wired into that grounding wire. That wire is known as the "P-lead" and if it breaks, the magneto cannot be shut off.
You can hand-start an airplane by pulling smartly on the propeller, a method known as "hand-propping."
Now imagine this scenario: Some passer-by is walking along a line of airplanes and comes upon a taildragger. He says: "This is how you used to start these things," and he gives the prop a yank. If a P-lead is broken, the engine can start. It will run until someone either breaks into the cabin and shuts the fuel off or pulls the mixture control all the way off. Even if the mixture control is all the way off, enough fuel might slowly creep into the carburetor to allow the engine to fire a few revolutions.
Which is enough to injure or kill a careless fool who didn't expect the engine to start. I shut off the fuel valve from the tanks to the engine and, when I shut down, I do that and let the engine run to drain the line to the carburetor.
In doing the pre-flight, I turned the fuel selector switch back to a tank so I could take a fuel sample. I came around the landing gear to walk to the right side of the airplane (it's easier for me to take a sample from that side) and I smelled aviation gasoline. I looked down and I saw that gas was dripping from the cowling. I shut the fuel control off, secured the airplane, left a phone message on the answering machine of my mechanic and went to lunch.
It might have been something that I could have discovered by looking at the carburetor or maybe lightly tapping on it in case the float had stuck. It was 25degF out with a slight wind, pre-flighting it was miserable enough and the mechanic works in a heated hangar. Easy choice.
It took him about two weeks to get to it, as his priority is to fix airplanes that people use to make money, which I fully understand. He called to say that it wasn't leaking when he looked at it, it started OK, but did I know that there was a pretty good oil leak from the back of the engine?
Um, no. The oil level was were it should be when I checked it.
So the airplane is in his hangar and I'm on the ground.
(Before you comment, read the first word of advice just below the title of this blog.)
Monday, December 29, 2008
Only anyone who has never paid any attention to goings-on in the Middle East can be surprised at what is going on right now.
Israel does not do "proportional response." Hardly any other nation in that region does, either, though most of their actions are against internal opponents.
That would be a fitting memorial to George Bush; let's forget all about trying to do a fair valuation and just grab the land because playing fair is so bloody inconvenient.
If I ran that company, at this point in the process, I'd fence the fucking site off with razor wire.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Except he was born in Gori, Georgia, the same town the Russians briefly occupied last summer during Saakashvili's Great Adventure.
Otherwise, why would one of the candidates for chairman of the Party of Hoover think it was funny to distribute a CD with a racist song? Note that this turdlet of a human being was Huckabee's campaign manager and that he got the song from a certain drug-addicted Nazi gasbag with a radio show.
The Party of Hoover is tromping down the road to being a party of wannabee segregationists in the Old South. If they continue down that dark path, they very well may become the Whigs of the 21st. Century.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that despite President Bush's low approval ratings, people will soon "start to thank this president for what he's done."When you find yourself in custody in a foreign land and charged with crimes against humanity, Condi, maybe that thought will comfort you.
But you'd be better off proclaiming a belief in Santa Claus or the Flying Spaghetti Monster. For the idea that people will thank Bush has about as much chance of coming true as finding yourself face-to-face with the real FSM. Unless you go through a quantum mirror, that is.
The entirety of his year-end summation is here.
How weird a year was it?
Here's how weird:
• O.J. actually got convicted of something.
• Gasoline hit $4 a gallon -- and those were the good times.
• On several occasions, Saturday Night Live was funny.
• There were a few days there in October when you could not completely rule out the possibility that the next Treasury Secretary would be Joe the Plumber.
• Finally, and most weirdly, for the first time in history, the voters elected a president who -- despite the skeptics who said such a thing would never happen in the United States -- was neither a Bush NOR a Clinton.
You would of course, be so wrong in thinking that.
The TSA is a creation of the Bush Administration and, of course, they are going to be as fucked up and as incompetent as possible.
And they are. TSA's major functions seems to be detaining the innocent and stealing shit from passengers. Their latest foray is delving into crackpot theories to try and spot terrorists with 2,000 "behavior detection officers." That's to be expected, as any Federal agency thatbegins a press release by bragging about operating "under the leadership" of Chimpy the Torturer is guaranteed to be a massive collection of mouth-breathing fuckups.
So far, she is ignoring them. Jake puts his front paws on the second step and then jumps up.
It's a good thing that they were cheap as hell, less than the price of two fancy-ass coffees ($10).
Fixer has a great idea. All you have to do, see, is buy one of these:
set it up out back and, when the mood strikes you, you can plink away at a likeness of the Tsar of the Baboons with a .22. I'd go for an air rifle; less noise and the target will last longer. On the other hand, there might be some fun in seeing how fast you can rip off a clip of rounds from a Ruger 10/22.
But now, not so much. In 23 days, Chimpy will go back to Texas to spend the rest of his life dodging arrest warrants from other nations. The horrid policies that this unrepentant jackass has inflicted upon us will continue to resonate through this country and the world for decades to come. We will always be a nation that tortured prisoners, sometimes to death, and we will never be able to escape that, at least in the lifetimes of anyone who read this blog entry on the day it was posted.
Soon that semi-literate moron will not be able to inflict any more damage to this country and to the planet. Not soon enough, though.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
George, Shitcake Extraordinare. After I take a shower, he wants his treats and they have to be given to him on the middle shelf of a bookcase, in a glass custard cup, which is his treats dish. If I don't give them to him, he'll knock that cup on the (thankfully) carpeted floor.
Bella, my friend's cat, is hiding upstairs at her house:
Bella is about 3 years old, is a sweet cat and is half the size of her other cat, Rocky (see last week's Caturday). At times Rocky tries to be friends, at other times he tries to beat the shit out of her. So she hates him. When I pet Bella, she will move around so she can nudge my other hand as if to say: "You have two hands, get to work adoring me."
and of course, Gracie, the Queen:
She is complaining as I type this because I am not petting her enough.
Friday, December 26, 2008
If the mining companies have their way, the first line to John Denver's song "Take me home, country roads" will have to be changed to "Almost Lunar, West Virginia," for the coal companies will make most of West Virginia as desolate as the surface of the Moon.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that the Bush Administration is all in favor of this form of environmental destruction.
Although the number of uninsured and the cost of coverage in the United States have ballooned under his watch, President George W. Bush leaves office with a health care legacy in bricks and mortar: He has doubled U.S. financing for community health centers, enabling the creation or expansion of 1,297 clinics in medically underserved areas.You can bet that there was no shortage of people in the party of Hoover who were against this, but Bush did get it done. There is not much that you are going to find that George Bush should be lauded for, but this is one.
On the other hand, his Administration was seriously asleep at the switch while the groundwork was being laid for the current deep recession/depression, so there will be a heck of a lot more people who need to use those clinics.
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Another resolution that would strengthen the normative frameworks of positive rights was one on the right to food, adopted by a recorded vote of 184 in favour to 1 against ( United States), with no abstentions (annex XIV).Can anyone explain to me why the Bush Administration thought it necessary that the United States be the sole nation on the face of the fucking planet to vote against a right to food?
I wasn't going to blog today. I was just going to take the day off. But this; this was too much to let pass by without comment. The inalienable rights to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" do not mean jack shit if one is starving.
I have to wonder what sort of Christian George W. Bush thinks that he is, for he truly is one of the most cold-hearted uncaring inhuman leaders that this nation has had the misfortune of having foisted upon us by those corrupt goons in the Party of Hoover.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
There is a change coming. When it comes, the result will probably be governments that are far less friendly to the United States.
You can bet your ass that Wal-Mart would still be trying to fuck over its employees to the max if McCain had won the election.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
The economy shrank the most it has since 1982 and consumer spending has reached a 28 year low.
Even the rich people (besides those who lost a shitload of money in the MAdoff Ponzi scheme) are spending less.
But the economists, who didn't see the current disaster coming, now see signs of a recovery beginning this summer.
I hope they're right. But if we are about to slip into a deflationary spiral, as some fear, then it could get a whole lot uglier.
The twist? NPR laid Ketzel off.
and it is pretty much impossible to demonstrate the Feats of Strength, but the Airing of the Grievances? Most of us bloggers who write about politics and government have that pretty much down cold!
Monday, December 22, 2008
Probably the most irresponsible of the three presidents from the party of Hoover has been George W. Bush, and mainly because he is such an ideological idiot that he has no real clue what his party has wrought.
The Republicans have done their level best to replace an economy based on manufacturing to an economy based on a giant Ponzi scheme, for that is all that the "service economy" and the financial sector is: A swindle.
It is fairly easy to understand manufacturing: People turn raw materials into components and then assemble to components into usable things. The money earned from making things such as washing machines and cars gets paid in part, to the workers, who then go out and buy other things. The factories add value; a car is worth considerably more than a ton of steel and a few hundred pounds of plastic, copper and rubber.
The financial industry, though, is basically a swindle. You take a mortgage on a house, bundle it together with a lot of other mortgages and those become securities, which are traded back and forth and insured against and so on and so forth. But it is really just a lot of paper chasing other paper, for no real work is done. Nothing is created, except more and more paper that is based on nothing at all. A number of people make a shitload of money trading that paper back and forth, raising the value of it, but there is no real "value" to it. It has no practical utility.
I suspect what has happened over the last few months is a lot of people are starting to ask a very simple question: "What is this shit really worth?" The answer is: "Not much."
All Ponzi schemes fail, eventually. Compared to the one that has been run by the financial services schemers, with the connivance of a lot of politicians, both Republican and Democratic (but far more Republican), Bernie Madoff, with his $50 billion scheme, was a rank amateur.
If we are going to get out of this mess, we have to do a few things. First off, as a nation, we have to rip up our credit cards. Other than a loan for a car or a mortgage for a house, if you can't afford to go pay cold cash for something, you have no business buying it (true emergencies notwithstanding).
Second, start putting something aside. Even if it is only five bucks a week, start putting something aside.
Third, we have to get our national economy back to making things, to adding value to things, and away from the paper shell game.
Fourth, we cannot afford to spend the way we have been doing on defense. Between the budgeted costs and the extra-budget costs and the hidden costs, we are edging close to a trillion dollars a year. This is going to be a hard item to get under control for domestic political reasons. But we have to. We have to stop buying weapons and shit just because some congressman wants to protect a plant in his district.
There will have to be some hard choices, as there is a point where one cannot cut without sacrificing the knowledge base to make things and to employ them in wartime. But we sure as hell do not need more C-130s, C-17s or F-22s. We may have to kill the MV-22 and go back to helicopters. The Navy is probably going to have to give up the Zumwalt DDG. We are going to have to go back to fighting wars only when it is a true national emergency, not because a bunch of chickenhawks at the Heritage Foundation or the American Enterprise Institute have wet-dreams of creating an empire.
Fifth, we need to increase the minimum age to collect Social Security.
Sixth, taxes need to be restored to a progressive basis where the wealthy pay a higher percentage than does the middle class. We need to tilt the balance away from favoring those whose money works for them. Slashing capital gains taxes favors only the truly wealthy, which is why the party of Hoover supports them.
Seventh, bring back inheritance taxes to pre-Bush levels. There is nothing wrong with making money, but there is something inherently inequitable to a life of high privilege because one won the Lucky Sperm Lottery.
Eighth, we need to plan for the future and part of that is making sure we don't wreck our environment. Fossil fuel use is nothing more than squandering our energy inheritance. We need to live far more lightly on the land than we do now.
In all sectors, whether it is national security, energy independence, having a sustainable economy or protecting our environment, the Republicans have wreaked havoc. Democrats, while tut-tutting about it, have offered very little in plans to change that.
We had better take these problems in hand and start making some real progress.
We do not have a lot of time left. There is a lot that has to be fixed.
If we do not get a move on, then the United States of America is going to lose its primacy in the world, maybe not tomorrow or in the next year, but soon and forever.
October's bill came: No promotional rate. I called up the billing people and asked: "WTF?" They apologized profusely and said that it sometimes takes six weeks for the promotion to be attached, but that it would show up on next month's bill.
November's bill came: No promotional rate. Same basic telephone discussion "it'll show up next month.
December's bill just came: No frigging promotional rate.
The folks at Comcast have their faults, as I have blogged about, but at least Comcast usually got the bill right.
Not like these fuckers at Verizon. Maybe if they pull some of their crowd of assholes off network duty and pay attention to their paperwork, this wouldn't happen.
I think I'm going to be making a complaint to the state Public Utility people. This is bullshit.
Where that event took place was not immediately apparent this morning. I will have to do a cautious and detailed search this evening after I get home from Ye Olde Salte Mine.
Something to look forward to...
Note that while they are requiring the auto workers to make concessions, the bankers who took taxpayer money are giving themselves huge bonuses and continuing to enjoy all the perks of living the high life.
I am sorry if I seem like a broken record on this issue, but it enrages me no end. A bunch of clowns in the party of Hoover, most of whom have maybe, just maybe, only ever gotten their hands dirty doing work around their own yard, are hammering people who do hard, physical work for a living. You can bet your ass that those Hooverites don't need to take a shower after their jobs, they've only gotten sweaty after their jogging or a workout at the gym.
They'll take care of people like them, oh, no, no restrictions on other guys in $2,000 suits or who can afford memberships are pricey country clubs. But they have no compunction in bringing down the Hammer of Outrage upon the heads of workers.
The party of Hoover is beyond contempt. I cannot think of a creature loathsome enough that would not be offended by being compared to Republicans.
President George W. Bush suddenly saw that he could very well be the 21st century's Herbert Hoover. So after analyzing the imperiled economy earlier this year, he said, he "decided I didn't want to be the president during a depression greater than the Great Depression . . . so we moved and moved hard."It doesn't matter to Bush that Detroit is teetering on the edge. It doesn't matter to Bush that unemployment is creeping into double-digits. It doesn't matter to Bush that millions of homeowners are being kicked out of their homes. The only thing that matters to Bush that he not be remembered in the same vein as Herbert Hoover.
Too fucking late, Chimpy.
The story was about this book.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Amsterdam hosted a Christmas celebration for its gay community on Sunday featuring a nativity tableau with a male Mary in drag that church organizations denounced as an affront to traditional values.
Hazmat crew to Studio Three!
I agree with an ex-cop I know: It is high time that the use of a Taser be subjected to the same level of scrutiny that is applied when a copy shoots someone with a firearm. It seems that too many people are being killed by these gizmos.
Fuck those guys. Why do they continue to reap bonuses while taking Federal bailout money?
Where is the Republican outrage about bankers getting huge bonuses while their banks take Federal money? I know, that is a rhetorical question, you'd die from asphyxiation if you held your breath waiting for the Southern Hooverites to show high dudgeon about the pay of bankers.
No fucking shit, geniuses. I think that most people who have been paying attention to the popping of the housing bubble and the banking crisis figured this out three months ago, if not before then.
Besides a good chunk of the front page (above the fold), this bit of history took up at least two full pages in the Sunday NY Times. I'm surprised they didn't also run a story about the Battle of Hastings while they were at it.
- "Some of my best friends are _______"
- "I have nothing against ______ people, but..."
- "We ought to kill all of those fucking____."
- "I don't see why we have to give _____ special rights."
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Meanwhile, the SciFi Channel is having a bit of angst over the question of "now, what?"
This is an excellent article about BSG, which contains this line, comparing the current version of Battlestar Galactica to the original 1970s series:
The modern show is to the original as "Lost" is to "Gilligan's Island."Very true. I almost didn't watch the show because I had bright memories of how cheesy the original was, but I am some glad I took the time to watch the miniseries when it was aired five years ago.
He was killed yesterday in the crash of his private plane.
Susie has all of the links at how the dead guy was entangled in allegations of GOP voter fraud.
I have to hand it to the GOP; this is far classier way to off a troubling individual than dragging him into Fort Marcy Park and shooting him in the head.
A 12 year old girl went outside of her house, at her mother's request, to reset the circuit beaker. Three guys tried to kidnap her; she screamed for her father, who came out and fought with the kidnappers.
Turns out the kidnappers were vice cops, in plain clothes, operating on the assumption that any girl outside of her own home after dark had to be a hooker.
And so, in the usual move that cops make when they make an illegal arrest and it turns bad for them, they charged the girl and her father with resisting arrest. That's one of the oldest tricks in the book, for it also give the cops a bit of leverage in the inevitable civil suit.
Those cops were lucky, though. In much of Texas, the father would have come out with a rifle or a shotgun and killed them all. Or have been killed by them, in which case they might have had to worry about being charged with a Federal civil rights crime.
(H/T to RS)
But "shut down" only goes so far. If you're a blue collar worker for Chrysler, get your ass down to the unemployment office. If you're a white collar worker for Chrysler, you still get paid.
So, it would seem that even the management of Chrysler is, at its core, cut from the cloth of the party of Hoover: "Hooray for me and fuck you."
Rocky is trying to lure me to come over and pet his belly, he can then rip my arm to shreds.
I don't know why George squatted under the rung of that chair to reach the plate of food, but he was not the only cat to eat that way.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Goldman Sachs is now paying out $10.93 billion in bonuses.
So our money is going to underwrite the bonuses to the morons who helped drive Goldman Sachs into a ditch. Goldman Sachs says it's not our money, but that's bullshit. Money is fungible.
I have an idea: Tell those fuckers to pay out only $930 million in bonuses and give us our ten billion back.
(Bunch of greedy motherfuckers)
Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights and author of "The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld," points out that over 20 countries now have universal jurisdiction laws that would allow them to indict U.S. officials for torture if America doesn't do it itself. A few such cases were attempted in recent years but were dropped, reportedly under U.S. pressure. Now the Obama administration may be less likely to stand in their way. This doesn't mean it will extradite Cheney and Co. to stand trial abroad. But at the very least, the threat of such suits could soon force Bush aides to think twice before buying plane tickets.This can't happen soon enough for my taste.
As Law Dog reported, H-S Precision issued a "non-apology" apology.
I don't think H-S Precision gets it and I suspect that folks will continue to be pissed off at them.
Note that none of the banks or financial institutions were required to do jack shit about executive pay, let alone beating down the wages and benefits paid to the lower levels of their work forces. They were not even required to do anything with the money they got from the Treasury department; they have been free to just stash it away in their vaults, like Scrooge McDuck. The drop in interest rates has solely been due to the Federal Reserve slashing its rates, it has had nothing to do with the money the banks received from the TARP.
This is all about the party of Hoover engaging in union-busting; they are trying to do a reverse Terry Schiavo to the UAW.
I cannot even begin to set down here how much disgust and revulsion I feel for George W. Bush, Sen. Robert Corker and the rest of those soulless douchebags. They will do everything they can to destroy the middle and working classes in this country, which helping to make the top one-tenth of a percent of Americans even richer and richer.
BadTux is right: The goal of the party of Hoover is to turn the United States of America into Mexico North. They really do want to destroy the middle class and the working class, so all that are left are a relatively small handful of rich people and armies of dirt-poor people to work as servants to the rich and to eke out a living at whatever horrific jobs the rich may make available. Their long run plans probably include scrapping compulsory education (above a fourth-grade level) and closing all of the public colleges and universities, for an educated populace is a threat to the society they envision.
The problem for the Hooverites in bringing about their Mexico North plan is that the American people may not stand for it and, unlike the peasantry in Mexico, the people in this country are still relatively well-armed. A decent scoped rifle is still not overly expensive and those "AT&T guns" can hit a target at a quarter-mile without a huge amount of training.
The Recording Industry Association of America said it plans to try an approach that relies on the cooperation of Internet-service providers. The trade group said it has hashed out preliminary agreements with major ISPs under which it will send an email to the provider when it finds a provider's customers making music available online for others to take. Depending on the agreement, the ISP will either forward the note to customers, or alert customers that they appear to be uploading music illegally, and ask them to stop. If the customers continue the file-sharing, they will get one or two more emails, perhaps accompanied by slower service from the provider. Finally, the ISP may cut off their access altogether.I'll bet that Comcast was the first ISP to suck up to the RIAA by agreeing to be their stooges.
(H/T to Suburban Guerrilla)
The integrity of the Nobel prize was called into question last night after it emerged that a member of the jury also sat on the board of a pharmaceuticals giant that benefited from the award of this year’s prize for medicine. Prosecutors were studying whether AstraZeneca, the London-based multi-national pharmaceutical company, could have exerted undue influence on the award.The idea that Big Pharma has wormed its corrupt tentacles into even the Nobel Prize Committees is sad and enraging at the same time. From here on out, when a Nobel Prize is awarded, we're going to have to wonder what company stands to benefit and who was paid off.
The joint winner of this year’s Nobel Prize for Medicine, Harald zur Hausen, was recognised for his work on the human papilloma virus (HPV), which can lead to cervical cancer. AstraZeneca has a stake in two lucrative vaccines against the virus. Two senior figures in the process that chose Mr. zur Hausen have strong links with the pharmaceutical company, which has also recently begun sponsoring the Nobel website and promotional subsidiary.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Jake did not get a good report from the vet. He has lost most of his teeth and it looks as though he is going to lose almost all of the rest.
George, the oldest of them all, is in fine health, good weight and still full of attitude.
Here is a free piece of advice to the Omamanites: Keep this sort of shit up and the time will come when the activists from the party of Hoover go after Obama and then, when he needs us to defend him, we will stand aside with our hands clasped behind our backs.
Just like a lot of us did when Clinton got into trouble.
In this country, the message by the Bush Administration to endangered species is this: Die soon.
The Japanese car makers are saying that things are getting worse on a daily basis.
Jaguar and Land Rover, which are both owned by Tata Motors of India, are seeking loans or a bailout from the British government.
Sweden has bailed out Saab and Volvo.
It has been clear from the start that the main reason that the world's economy has been sliding downhill is because the U.S. economy started deteriorating. It is still true that when the American economy sneezes, the world's economy catches cold.
If the economy of the U.S. and yes, of the world, is to be fixed, we are going to have to take the lead in fixing it. That will never happen as long as Sen. Reid allows the party of Hoover to strangle every initiative to fix the economy.
One of the big whines of the economists is that consumer credit is nearly frozen. That can be fixed by the Federal Reserve Credit Card. Of course, they would need an operation that is already in place to take in payments from consumers and pay the merchants, so we would co-opt the IRS into that job.
The top rate on the FRCC would be 10%. Balance transfers would be permitted, so those consumers who are carrying a huge balance on their credit cards would be able to reduce much of the debt burden that they are saddled with. People who have huge balances and interest rates of 30% (or higher) would stand a better chance of paying that down and fixing their lives short of bankruptcy.
Default on the FRCC and the default is transformed into a tax lien, which the IRS is very good at enforcing.
The banks won't like this, but fuck them. The Treasury department has given those souless vampires hundreds of billions of dollars in cash under the TARP, with the hope that the banks would start lending again, and the banks have done nothing other than sit on the cash and hand out huge bonuses to their executives.
The FRCC could do a lot to fix the economy and, when things got better, the FRCC could close new charges on the cards and fold up shop entirely once the charges were all paid off.
(Oh, and when I refer to bankers as "vampires," I don't mean the nice cuddly ones from the"Twilight" series. I mean the evil bloodsuckers that Buffy the Vampire Slayer mowed down by the thousands.)
Time to download Firefox 3, folks.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
This one doesn't even budge the needle on the Surprise-o-Meter. Anyone who has paid the minutest bit of attention to the way that the Quarter-Bright Prince ran his government would know that he knows nothing and cares nothing about science.
George Bush probably believes that evolution is false, that the planet is really flat, that the Earth was indeed created in six days, that Jesus rode a brontosaurus and that the entire universe is only 6,000 years old.
That's changing. And they are not happy.
Boo. Fucking. Hoo.
In short, if you are not rich, deflation will hammer you very hard. If you are rich, deflation is good for you.
Keep that in mind and then revisit what the party of Hoover has been doing.
SEC Chairman Christopher Cox said he is "gravely concerned by the apparent multiple failures" by staff to look into claims about Madoff's business and to seek formal authority to investigate.Oh, please. Give me a fucking break. The party of Hoover (and its Democratic sympathizers) has worked to eviscerate regulation and oversight for the last 28 years and now we are reaping the whirlwind.
This was not a "multiple failure" of staff, no more than abu Ghraib was the action of a bunch of rouge enlisted men. What the SEC did not do was what the Administration, both this one and the three previous ones, wanted it to do. They wanted the SEC and the other financial regulators to be as diligent as this guy:
and the SEC obliged them. As a result, a crook like Bernard Madoff was able to run a pyramid scheme for a very long time.
And if you think that Madoff is the only one out there, then brother, do I have a bridge to sell you.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
He proposes to:
- Raise fees for driver's licenses and vehicle registration.
- Raise licensing fees for professionals who are licensed by the state.
- Cut medicaid spending.
- Cut educational spending.
- Close state facilities.
- Lay off some state workers.
- Cut aid to municipalities.
- Raise taxes on gasoline
- Raise taxes on cable TV
- Raise the fines for motor vehicle violations.
- Tax rich people.
And you would be wrong.
Chimpy McStagger on his "Iraq Victory Tour 2008"
I can't be the only person who suspects that the reason why Prime Minister al-Maliki wants our troops gone as fast as possible is that he plans to seize power. But as long as our soldiers are there, in force, he has to play a nice little believer in democracy.
It will all be for naught, we will have deposed one brutal dictatorial regime and installed another at the cost of a trillion dollars and thousands of American lives.
This is from his profile:
A crusty old phart and frustrated pundit raised in a simpler place and time. Mule Breath holds some rather under-appreciated views on politics, education, religion and human liberties. Skeptical musings on life, truth, religion, politics and liberty by the rarest of native Texas animals... a Constitutional liberal.It's a brand-spanking new blog and I think it's worth a look. So go check it out,
So if you purchase a short-term T-bill, it is possible that you may get a negative interest rate, which means that you have to pay the government to hold your money for you.
But it was.
The two cops who were trying to open the box got blown to bits. The chief, who was standing nearby, was critically injured.
Oh, he doesn't agree that waterboarding is torture, but torture it is. This is an "admission against interest," which would probably be admissible in any court that sought to try him.
If Dick Cheney goes overseas after January 20th to any nation other than Saudi Arabia, Iraq and possibly Israel, he will run a real risk of being arrested and extradited for trial in one of the nations that maintains world-wide jurisdiction for war crimes. He might as well surrender his passport.
Under the Yamashita/Medina Doctrine of command responsibility, George Bush will run the same risks if he goes overseas.
It couldn't happen to a more deserving pair of scum-sucking weasels.
(H/T to Raw Story)
Until Reid starts making Republicans pay a price for being obstructionist, they will continue to do just that. They will try to destroy the unions and if that means kneecapping the economy, they will do that. The Republicans will cripple the Obama Administration's legislative efforts because they will pay no price for doing so.
For a guy who supposedly was once a boxer, Reid surprisingly has no taste for political combat. His mantra seems to be "well, what can I do?" I have seen nothing to indicate that he is any kind of leader; all the Republicans have to do is threaten a filibuster and Reid folds his tent and slinks away.
Why the Democrats in the Senate continue to vote for this guy as majority leader is beyond my understanding.
The Three Wise Men really do need to bring these gifts to Reid.
Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of an American political dynasty, has decided to pursue the United States Senate seat being vacated by Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York. The decision came after a series of deeply personal and political conversations, in which Kennedy, whom friends describe as unflashy but determined, wrestled with whether to give up what has been a lifetime of avoiding the spotlight.If I had a say in the matter, I'd say not only "no," but "no fucking way in hell." This is even worse than the Tsar of the Baboons "coming into the president" eight years after his father. At least the Quarter-Bright Prince ran for the job (though his henchmen stole both elections). Hillary Clinton ran for her Senate seat.
When you drill right down to the core of the matter, while Caroline Kennedy may have done a lot of good works, the only reason that her name is in contention is because of her last name. She has not run for any elected office that I know of. Let the Party of Hoover engage in dynastic politics if they want, running one retard after another from the descendants of Prescott Bush (who at least cared about civil rights, which distinguished him from his idiot grandson).
Governor Paterson should appoint a Democrat who has proven that he or she can win an election. If Caroline Kennedy wants to be a senator, let her run for the job.
Monday, December 15, 2008
A royal "fuck you" to Sen. Corker, who had no problem handing out over $500 million to Volkswagen to get them to build an assembly plant in his home town.
A royal and hearty "fuck you" to all the senators, mostly Republican, who would rather see the American car industry go down in flames and two million or more people thrown out of work, if it gives the Party of Hoover a chance to whack at the unions.
As for Congress, shame on you for playing politics when so many jobs and, in many ways, the future of American manufacturing is at stake. But then again politics is all you know. Maybe you should let American carmakers get on with what they know how to do: build cars.Go read this article, which points out the rampant hypocrisy of the Party of Hoover. The writer tries to make it bipartisan, but it's pretty hard to do when the villains are all Republicans. Note how he points out that the auto industry world-wide is in trouble, not just Detroit. Sales are down across the board.
Let's look at some data that shows how hypocritical the Party of Hoover really is. The report is from 2006. Note that for every dollar Michigan sent to the Feds, they got back 85 cents.
But in Tennessee, the state of Senator "no bailouts" Corker, they got back $1.30. Alabama, the state of Sen. Shelby (R-Mercedes), they got back $1.71 for every dollar in Federal tax collected.
Talk about your hypocritical pigs. They'll take every cent they can swindle from the Treasury, and crow about it, but when it comes to trying to prevent the American automobile industry from disappearing in the biggest financial crash since the Party of Hoover last brought one about, that's when those soulless douchebags snap the purse strings shut.
They are truly weasels. Both men should emigrate to Syria and take jobs as torturers, for they have no humanity whatsoever.
Two knowledgeable sources tell NEWSWEEK that the clash erupted [in 2004] over a part of Bush's espionage program that had nothing to do with the wiretapping of individual suspects. Rather, Comey and others threatened to resign because of the vast and indiscriminate collection of communications data. These sources, who asked not to be named discussing intelligence matters, describe a system in which the National Security Agency, with cooperation from some of the country's largest telecommunications companies, was able to vacuum up the records of calls and e-mails of tens of millions of average Americans between September 2001 and March 2004. The program's classified code name was "Stellar Wind," though when officials needed to refer to it on the phone, they called it "SW." (The NSA says it has "no information or comment"; a Justice Department spokesman also declined to comment.)Read the rest of the story here. And maybe now it is becoming clearer why the Bush Administration was so desperate to prevent anyone from looking into the wholesale violations of the U.S. Constitution perpetrated by the Bush Administration and the NSA.
It will come as no surprise that the attorney who said that wiretapping everyone was legal was that noted facilitator of war criminals, John Yoo.
Now,as Jill noticed, the British government is looking into going after reporters for reporting on the credit crunch. I guess the Brits figure that if the common folk are kept uninformed as to the doings of the financial system, we won't notice that they have driven the economy off a cliff due to their greed and corruption. Until it is too late to do anything about it, that is.
The Hon. George W. Bush
President of the United States
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
President George W. Bush
c/o George W. Bush Presidential Lieberry
Southern Methodist University
6425 Boaz Lane
Dallas TX 75205
Don't forget to put in some note about the shoes are in recognition of his service to this nation.
Let's flood Bush with filthy footwear!
Besides the point that these low-IQ goons will train their fellow racists in the US, the actions of those thugs in Iraq and Afghanistan are getting other soldiers killed. Indiscriminate killings done by American soldiers (and contractors) are one of the best recruiting tools the Iraqi insurgents and the Taliban have.
(H/T to Fixer)
He's off flying to Iraq and Afghanistan to polish up the rotting turd of his legacy.
Paul Krugman pointed out in his column that it has been confirmed that the neo-Hoovers in the Senate were using the Detroit bailout bill as a bludgeon to break the unions. The focus of his column, though, is on how the German version of the Party of Hoover are doing what they can to sink the European bankruptcy.
Meanwhile, Sen. Corker, (R-Nissan), is apparently doing everything he can to persuade the White House to not help Detroit.
This is just like what happened after Hurricane Katrina; the poor, the middle class, the workers can all go fuck themselves. If you need a paycheck to feed your family, the Bush Administration will never be there for you. But if you run a bank, they will shovel money down your gullet, even if you don't want them to.
The Party of Hoover is just evil. But they will continue to gum up the machinery of government because the spineless fucks in the Democratic leadership of the Senate, led by Harry Reid (D-Cnidaria), are unwilling or unable to do anything.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
The Bush Administration flew in hundreds of tons of cash into Iraq.
When all this was going on, the Republicans in the Congress said nothing. Zip, nada, nichevo.
With very little discussion, the Bush Administration poured roughly 150 billion dollars into AIG.
But $14 billion to prevent the domestic auto industry from going under? The GOP is against it, why, heaven forbid, for that benefits workers, and even worse, workers who belong to a union and vote for Democrats.
Let's be clear about it, for that is what it is: The Republicans are trying to break the unions. They are going to try and get in between a private corporation and the unions representing their workers and bust things up.
It is nothing more than Terry Schiavo writ large.
Let's be clear about something else: GM is probably going to fail, eventually. Keeping GM alive is not the point at this time. The point at this time is to keep employed a million or so workers who, if GM and then Chrysler fail, will be out on the street in the midst of the most severe recession since World War II. If GM can't survive, then at least let's have it fall apart in an orderly fashion when the economy is rebounding, so that there is some hope of the workers finding jobs, so that there is some rising demand for auto parts from the other auto makers, domestic and foreign, in order that the suppliers not go bust, too.
But in order to break the unions, the Party of Hoover is fully ready to throw this country into another depression, if need be. In order to recover their imaginary moral rectitude, the Party of Hoover will trash this nation's economy rather than help out anyone.
The national Republican party could give lessons in nastiness to Ebenezer Scrooge, Al Dunlap, Frank Lorenzo and Carl Icahn. Republicans are like the yahoos in pickup trucks who swerve to the side of the road to run over baby ducks.
They really are the Party of Hoover, and will be so known, forever and ever.
So say we all.
Ho ho ho.
Just when you think they've set a new bar in incompetence...I also had a problem with Comcast's e-mail system, only I use Thunderbird. The idiot in Customer-Disservice said "only Outlook 2007 will work with Comcast," which is a damn lie, but he was probably speaking from a script and didn't know any better.
OK, so I try to send an email and Eudora beeps and says "Unable to connect to host smtp.comcast.net". Can't ping it either, from this box or any other on the network.
Phone Comcast. "Please enter your phone number and a representative will call you back in one to two hours." Beepty-beep, "Please speak your name." Say name. "Thank you, please hang up."
Ring-ring. "This is the callback you requested from Comcast. When
is on the line, please press 1." Beep. "Thank you. You will be directed to the next available representative." Lengthy silence, punctuated by a Denver Bronco promising he'll "intercept the next representative just for YOU".
Guy finally picks up. Tell him "I can't send any outgoing email from my local client."
"What do you mean by 'client', sir?"
"My email program. Eudora."
"Sorry, sir, I'm not acquainted with Eudora."
"Look, my computer can't reach your SMTP server, smtp.comcast.com."
"Did you set your outgoing mail to smtp.comcast.com?"
"Yes, that's what I said, but I CAN'T CONNECT TO IT. I can't even ping it."
"That means my computer can't find it."
"Have you tried restarting your computer?"
Go to the Comcast website and bring up the "Report a problem via email" page. Fill out the whole form with a detailed problem description. Click "Submit" -- oops, no. THERE IS NO SUBMIT BUTTON ON THE FORM. The only way out of the form is to "X" it.
Stumble on the "Local Outages Map" page. Guess what: "We are investigating complaints of an issue that may affect outgoing email in your area." Dated SIX DAYS AGO, and the guy on the phone didn't know about it.
"It was amusing."-- Bush's comment about having shoes thrown at him.
What a clueless dickhead. He really does have no clue as to how deeply that man insulted him.
His blood is on the hands of people like Loud Dobbs and the other hate-talk blowhards who keep railing about the threat of being overrun by immigrants.
I'm sure Dorquemada considered it to be funny.
Speaking of funny, the Director of the CIA was on "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me." If you go to about 5:15 into the piece, you'll hear him inadvertently bilge George Bush (with the help of Paula Poundstone).
Saturday, December 13, 2008
I was first surprised to hear that Thomas Jane, the actor who had the title role in the 2004 flick, turned it down. It's not as though he's been in much of note. He had to have read the script and then barfed.
Wait until it comes onto basic cable and then, when it does, find something else to watch.
The FAA and Homeland Security Ban Santa Claus from U.S. Airspace
Written by Buck E Filbert
In a surprise move today The Federal Aviation Administration and Homeland Security joined forces to unilaterally deny domestic air space clearance to the traditional Christmas Eve sleigh ride by Santa Claus.
Santa's ride has been bringing joy and happiness to millions of children for generations. Irate parents worldwide are said to be absolutely distraught. "Who's going to eat the milk and cookies for a start?" asked one parent.
Homeland Security has said that any penetration into American air space will be considered an act of aggression as part of their duty in keeping American airspace and borders safe. A spokesman from Homeland Security told us, "We just can't have every jolly, rosy cheeked, white-haired fruitcake in the world flying around American air space unsupervised."
FAA engineers are scratching their heads about where to begin in certifying Santa's sleigh as safe for flight. There are no standards regulating the stability and performance of reindeer, also the FAA simply doesn't know how to inspect a machine which, in their minds, "totally defies the laws of physics".
The FAA will consider granting clearance if all FAA regulations are met. Here are a few:
* As a powered aircraft, Santa's sleigh requires an approved propulsion system (Reindeer fed on magic dust are not mentioned in the regulations and cannot be used).
* A single red light at the lead of the pack of reindeer does not constitute a set of running lights.
* The Sleigh must have a valid maintenance procedure, must meet aerodynamic requirements and be tested in a wind-tunnel.
* All required speeds (stall, climb, approach) must be documented, as well as the performance with the loss of one or more reindeer.
* Detailed flight plans must be plotted and submitted to the FAA at least six months in advance.
Santa Claus is said to be very upset by the reaction from these US agencies and feels the actions are a direct violation of the Children's basic human rights.
Homeland Security laid down the following ultimatum to Santa Claus: "If we see any flying sleighs in the skies over America you can bet your bottom dollar there'll be a F-16 with Sidewinders blasting it outta the sky."
There is no truth to the rumor that Dick Cheney is currently learning how to fly jet fighters.
She was sleeping on the couch...
When the sound of the camera woke her up.
"Crimus, again with the camera, Mom?" (heavy sigh)
Ready for her closeup.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.), the lead Republican negotiator on a last-minute effort to bail out U.S. automakers, said a deal might have been possible Friday had the White House not intervened.Bull-fucking-shit. Corker is either one of the baldest liars on the planet or he is one of the stupidest senators in recent memory (and those are not mutually exclusive choices). The Senators from the Party of Hoover was not going to let the auto bailout bill pass. That has been clear from the start; the Hooverites were more interested in busting the balls of the UAW than they have ever been in staving off a massive economic meltdown.
Aside from that, and speaking of balls, the one thing that the collapse of the auto bailout bill has shown is that once again, Senator Harry Reid has none. So the neo-Hoovers threatened to filibuster? Once it became clear that the bill did not have 60 votes, Reid should have called the vote anyway and made those fuckers filibuster.
"We're going to filibuster." "Oh, I am so sorry for offending you, I apologize to the bottom of my feet. Here, let me withdraw this offensive bill from your esteemed sight."
They sure grow a bunch of motherfucking pussies in Nevada.