Last Night

Bully for Rick Perry for calling Social Security what it is, a Ponzi scheme. For that, I’m a little more hopeful. He should’ve really gone on the attack regarding the Global Warming myth. I haven’t been a Perry man & I’m not still, but I’ll keep watching and listening. Still have questions; mainly illegals & executive orders. He needs to be more down-home. Let his hair down, as it were. That was one of W’s most endearing qualities.

Boo Hiss for the reasonable Romney for believing we’re too stupid to hear the truth about Social Security. It’s too bad Mr. Romney thinks it’s too scary for people to hear. He is a moderate, maybe even a progressive. He certainly appears to be a big-government republican.

Herman Cain is awesome. His 9-9-9 plan sounds very promising. Every answer he gave was well thought, reasoned & passionate. He does need to lighten up a bit. Be more endearing. He’s one of only two that speaks in plain English, not political bullcrap speak. The other is Newt.

Michelle Bachmann, whom I love, can’t be elected. I am now convinced of it. I wish I were wrong. You might as well prop up a wooden manikin. I like what she says, but she sure doesn’t show it. I see absolutely no passion. She barely moves. That saddens me, but that’s the reality. Dress down a little. Drop the Over-the-top Barbie look. Get Real. Look for her to be the V.P.

Newt was awesome. He speaks plainly & with force. He says all the right things; taxes, Bernanke, energy. He is brilliant & would wipe the floor in a debate against Obama. Newt is the epitome of “Knowledge is Power”. He has everything I want except my trust. I’ve previously described him as a convenient conservative. He thinks like me when it appears to be safe to do so. It seems like when he gets some heat, he folds. Not good. I wish I could love Newt, but he scares me.

Santorum simply doesn’t have what it takes. He is constantly speaking of his record in congress. No one cares. Show some passion. Be animated. He is not taking advantage of his limited opportunities. He’s done. Too bad. I like almost everything he stands for.

Ron Paul, I love, like I love my crazy Uncle. I agree with a lot of things he says. He is truly no-nonsense. You know exactly where he stands. He would be my Treasury Secretary.

Jon “The Science is Settled” Huntsman, please. He is John McCain. No chance!

So, what’s the bottom line? In my opinion, Perry, Newt & Cain showed the strongest. Not that these are the frontrunners, just the ones that shown through last night. Newt & Cain may drop out tomorrow, for all I know.
Next debate it may flip completely. It’s still very early.

El gran Debate

The great Republican debate is on TV tonight. It is being held at the Ronald Reagan presidential library. Perry may or may not show up. After all, his state is burning to the ground. Maybe instead of staying in his home state he should jet off to Martha’s Vineyard.

Anyway, in the lead up to the event tonight, I was reading an article on RedState.com posted titled: “Proposed Questions for the GOP Debate: Time for Specifics”. I picked a few (ok, more than a few) and answered them the way I think a candidate should. You know, one with actual stones.

Federal Reserve: Many conservatives have criticized the Fed’s interventionist policies as the culprit for a weak dollar and higher commodity prices. Q: What reforms would you impose on the Fed? Would you repeal the Fed’s dual mandate to achieve economic growth, leaving it to focus just on currency stability? A: The answer should be to dump it all together. Anything created in the Wilson Administration is by default, bad. Otherwise its single mission should be currency stabilization. It’s doing such a good job of it.

Taxes: Some candidates have offered a more specific tax reform plan than others. Q: What specific rates would you propose for the personal income tax, the corporate tax, capital gains & dividends? Should we abolish the death tax? Which tax credits and deductions, if any, would you keep? Do you believe in refundable credits like the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Additional Child Tax Credit? Do you support Obama’s proposal to extend the 2% payroll tax holiday for another year? A: Don’t accept the premise of the question. I would go all in on the Fair Tax, a national sales tax to replace all other taxes. Damn the torpedoes! I used to advocate for the Flat Tax, but the Fair Tax is the only tax that is at least somewhat optional. With the fair tax, everyone will have skin in the game. Oh, and abolish the 16th Amendment.

Energy Subsidies: Q: Should we abolish ethanol subsidies, or merely reform them as some in the Senate have proposed? What about farm subsidies? Should government invest any resources in alternative fuels, or should that be left to private enterprise and the free market? A: Again. Faulty question. Abolish all subsidies. Read the Constitution. They (subsidies) aren’t in there. If a product can’t be developed in the private sector, it won’t be developed.

Healthcare: Presumably, everyone supports the repeal of Obamacare. Nevertheless, even before Obamacare, the cost of healthcare had been skyrocketing. Q: What do you think is the cause of the high healthcare costs and what conservative solutions would you implement to create downward pressure on healthcare costs? A: I agree, repeal Obamacare. It is unconstitutional & anti-constitutional. Health care is not a federal issue. It is a free market & state issue. The Feds should have no hand in health care except to allow for free interstate commerce of such.

Education: Q: Would you repeal No Child Left Behind? What role, if any, should the federal government play in education? A: Yes, repeal that horrible bill foisted on us by another progressive, George W. Bush. Again, read the Constitution. The Feds have no role.

Housing: Q: Should the federal government be involved in public housing, rental assistance, and housing finance activities? A: This is getting monotonous. Hello, Constitution!

I could on but even I’m getting bored with saying, “Constitution”.

Maybe someday I’ll see a candidate with the bolas to say what I’m thinking. I’m hoping to be pleasantly surprised, but I won’t be holding my breath.

On the Express Train

I went to the Tea Party Express rally yesterday in Manchester, N.H.
Living only a couple of miles away from the venue I decided to ride my bike. I’m glad I did. It was held in a park in downtown Manchester. Turns out there wasn’t a parking spot anywhere near it. I’d guess there were at least 1,000 people in attendance. That may not sound like a lot, but for a small city in a small state the turn out was good & boisterous. Did I mention it was about 90 degrees with about 100% humidity? That didn’t dampen the spirits of the attendees. It did, however, dampen more than a few shirts. Everyone came to see Sarah Palin speak. She was great. Palin had a speech prepared which she followed but I also noticed her speaking extemporaneously. Pretty uncommon in this day & age.
Look Mom, no teleprompter!

This was the first time I’ve seen her speak live. I understand why people gravitate toward her. I liked her before but she is very engaging in person. Palin is very real, very personable & quite likeable, not to mention very conservative. Oh, and not an uglo-american. No wonder she pisses off so many on the left. I didn’t hear her saying anything regarding taking out the Sons of Bitches either. I must have come late. Speaking of which; I ran into a couple of friends there & they observed not seeing the usual disruptive lefty whackos. I hadn’t noticed, but they were right. There were only a couple of them out by the street waving a sign about Big Oil. One of them was dressed in a Polar Bear suit. That must have been comfortable in the heat. I regret not getting a picture.

Holy Crap! I just noticed. This is a New Hampshire Tea Party Rally. What’s a black guy doing here? I didn’t think they were allowed in?

Anyway, I’m glad I went. That’s the nice thing about New Hampshire at this time. Everyone must come here so there will be plenty more events to attend.

Is Congress Waking Up?

From Newsbusters:

House Republicans introduced a bill last week with hopes of forcing major changes on the United Nations. The bill would require the United Nations to allow member countries to fund the UN agencies of their choosing rather than according to a formula, end funding for Palestinian refugees, limit U.S. funding to be used only for purposes specifically outlined by Congress, and end contributions to peacekeeping programs until changes in management take place.

With the United States contributing 22% of the UN’s operating budget, the GOP believes there is enough leverage to force these changes in the UN. Led by the Republican chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the changes are designed to end corruption and inefficiency in the global organization. How involved do you think the U.S. should be in the UN? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

Further from Bloomberg:

The U.S. pays 22 percent of the UN’s regular operations budget and is assessed 27 percent of the peacekeeping budget. The U.S. payments totaled $3.35 billion in 2010, of which $2.67 billion was dedicated to the 16 peacekeeping operations worldwide, from South Sudan to Haiti. […]

Ros-Lehtinen’s aim in shifting the UN budget to a voluntary system is to encourage competition for funds and therefore elicit more effective performance from UN agencies, said a House aide familiar with the legislation. He wasn’t authorized to speak on the record.

The bill’s timing runs counter to the emergence of the administration’s “Obama Doctrine” of working with others to address international issues, particularly those that don’t pose an immediate security threat to the U.S., said Jeffrey Laurenti, a UN analyst at the Century Foundation, a New York-based economic, political and social research foundation.

Call Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen at (202) 225-3931 & thank her for her initiative & leadership.

Woods to Play the Frys

Tiger Woods has signed on to play in the Frys.com Open in October. So why this tournament? It’s not exactly a first tier event. Was it just on a whim? Not at all.

A lot of the credit has gone to Duke Butler, president of the event, but Woods’ decision to play at the Frys.com Open is not solely the doing of Butler. John Fry’s commitment to the tournaments excellence played a major role. Butler has, however had a decent relationship with Tiger’s agent Mark Steinberg since 2007.

In 2010, the day before the U.S. at Pebble Beach, Butler picked up Steinberg & drove him up to San Martin him a tour of CordeValle, home of the Frys. Steinberg was introduced to John Fry. He was impressed.

It appears the event is sold out. Bet that’s never happened before.

I guess Tiger’s still has the Mojo to draw a serious crowd.

0 Jobs??

Hey Hey Ho Ho, we don’t need no jobs no mo! Everybody chant!

Yes the monthly jobs report was released today. We added 0 jobs. Awesome! It’s the end of another recovery summer.

And, oh by the way, the change in total nonfarm payroll employment for June was revised down again (the way it always is) from +46,000 to +20,000, and the change for July was revised from +117,000 to +85,000. I’m sure the experts were surprised.

The economy expanded at an annual pace of only 0.7 percent in the first six months of the year. That was the slowest six months of growth since the recession officially ended in June 2009. Oh, it ended? Most economists forecast that growth may improve to about a 2 percent annual rate in the July-September quarter. But that’s not fast enough to generate many jobs. Are these the same economists that predict the jobs number every month? They’ve yet to get close. Back to jobs, or no jobs.
Hiring fell across many different sectors. Manufacturers cut 3,000 jobs. Construction companies, retailers, and transportation firms also cut workers.
Yet the unemployment rate is still at 9.1%, which we all know is a lie. There are accounting gimmicks at play here. Shocking, I know.
Very simply the government accountants magically shrink the workforce. One gimmick is the Employment-Population Ratio. It is a statistic that takes the ratio of the total working age of the labor force currently employed to the total working age population of a region, municipality or country. The employment ratio is subject to manipulation and may be skewed in order to give the perception that an economy, based on this metric, is performing better then it really is.
The other is the workforce Participation Rate. It’s a measure of the active portion of an economy’s labor force. The participation rate refers to the number of people who are either employed or are actively looking for work. The number of people who are no longer actively searching for work would not be included in the participation rate. In a poor economy many people get discouraged and stop looking for employment, as a result, the participation rate decreases.

By merely eliminating people from these formulas it keeps the unemployment rate down. Just like magic. I feel better, but then, I have a job.

They Came for Me

Most everyone recalls Martin Niemoller’s original saying regarding the Nazi takeover.

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me–
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Few, however, recall that the Nazi Party didn’t come to prominence with goon squads & force. That came later, when there was no one left to speak out. Early on the Nazis & communists worked together against the Bourgeois. The red in the Nazi flag was a tip of the cap, as it were, to communists, as if to say, “Come join us, we’re just like you”. It wasn’t until the Nazi party took over that they started the “join or die” platform. You know – like ISIS.

Well, it’s happening again. The Arab Spring, European unrest, riots, flash mobs. The Union rallies & protests. The rampant expansion of anti-Semitism. Communists are suddenly coming out of the woodwork. Egypt has a Nazi party. Radical Islam is taking over the Middle East and Africa.

Now, granted, there appears to be more factions involved this time vying for supremacy. Not true. It’s the same old same old. If we don’t stand up & speak out, one of these factions, or a conglomeration of several, will become powerful enough to cause real problems.

They are coming for the Rich. They are coming for the corporations. They come for the religious. They come for the Tea Party. They organize the organized (unions). They organize the disorganized (flash mobs). They threaten to shut us down until they get their way.

I predict this will not end well. You, I, everyone, will have to choose sides. Choose the light or choose the dark side. It may not seem like the dark side now, but as it manifests itself, even the blind will be able to see it. I hope I’m wrong about all of this but I fear I’m not.

Star has a Bad Day

I Love this Stuff!

From The Blaze:

Back in March, NASA scientists observed a huge cosmic blast in the the constellation Draco. The events that followed were a mystery to them, until now.

They have now confirmed that X-rays and gamma rays observed by NASA’s Swift satellite were the result of a black hole consuming a nearby star in another galaxy.

According to Space.com, until now scientists had only witnessed the aftermath of stars being consumed by black holes, and that this event is helping them understand ”relativistic jets,” bursts of matter that shoot out at nearly the speed of light. Scientists say these observations could help them identify similar outbursts.

At the time when initial observations were being made, astronomers said the blast was unusual because the gamma ray bursts lasted longer than similar events:

Usually, gamma-ray bursts mark the destruction of a massive star, but flaring emission from these events never lasts more than a few hours.

According to NASA, this is what scientists concluded in the months following:

As a star falls toward a black hole, it is ripped apart by intense tides. The gas is corralled into a disk that swirls around the black hole and becomes rapidly heated to temperatures of millions of degrees.

The innermost gas in the disk spirals toward the black hole, where rapid motion and magnetism creates dual, oppositely directed “funnels” through which some particles may escape. Particle jets driving matter at velocities greater than 80-90 percent the speed of light form along the black hole’s spin axis. In the case of Swift J1644+57, one of these jets happened to point straight at Earth.

Below is a simulation, not the real thing:

Below is another visual:

Attribution: Liz Klimas

Went to visit a Hurricane

Well, not really. It’s been classified as a Tropical Storm by now. I decided to take a run out to the beach to see if there was any action. Big surf, high winds. I didn’t expect much & wasn’t disappointed. It was a lot of fun. Had to be at least 60 MPH sustained winds & it wasn’t raining at all. It ain’t exactly Hawaii, but better surf than we usually get up here in New England. Maybe I’m just a kid at heart but it was a blast having to fight against the wind just to stay upright. All in all a pretty fun experience. My condolences to those south of us that may have taken it on the chin.