Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Crash: If I only had a brain


Sherrif Joe Bozo perpetuates one of humanity’s most perplexing phenomenon:  If a lunatic goes crazy, does it drive him sane?

Seems Joe is all in a tizzy because the GOP is spending “$200 Billion” and “none of it is accounted for?”  The FEC keeps track of every dime there Joe, and it’s available to anyone.

Via Open Secrets – here’s who’s spending what, where it comes from and what it’s spent for.  Totals here include 2010 election cycle expenditures made both by the main committee and by all its affiliated committees.

Cash on Hand


Where's the money coming from?  Note six of the top ten are unions!  Click on the "Hitters" to see which party benefits - as if you didn't know

Top 10 Heavy Hitters:

Return to your seats and shut up.  We are in complete control.

Vote please!

Monday, October 25, 2010

BURN: No, Howie...It's Called "Obamic Tinnitus"

Howie Kurtz recently migrated to The Daily Bust from the WaPo.  He burns a lot of words wringing his hands over how the Obami tragically seem incapable of getting the "truth" out to the American people.  Another (stupid) installment in the "too much information out there" meme of the Collective.

Obama certainly bears responsibility for a wide range of missteps and a perverse talent for turning winning (on the Hill) into losing (in the court of public opinion). But what’s fascinating is the belief that the bully pulpit has been permanently downsized, forcing the leader of the free world to shout for attention in a cacophonous world.
It sounds absurd: Obama can instantly command attention any time he wants. He can pop onto the Today show, plop himself on Jay Leno’s couch, get himself on the cover of The New York Times Magazine, chat up the kids on MTV, diagram basketball brackets on ESPN. This week he’ll drop by The Daily Show and match wits with Jon Stewart. Everything he says is news.
But he has to compete with the din created by Gawker, Glenn Beck, baseball, Hardball, Oprah, Olbermann, O’Reilly, SNL, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.
And so the White House has to plot strategy to break through the static, just like any group of image-makers hawking a product. The fact that the salesman-in-chief is a global celebrity remains a powerful weapon. But it’s also a double-edged sword—one that, as a top official put it, can wind up "embedded in your chest."
See?  Poor Mr. Obama has to compete with other voices.  Gee, that never happened before, huh?  And people just have too much information now,  vying for their limited attention-span.

Actually, Howie, the truth is much more simple...and obvious.  We suffer from a malady I first identified as a sufferer in about month four of the Obama regime--Obamic Tinnitus.  It is typified by a constant, annoying ringing in the ears.  It is aggravated by the CERTAINTY that most of the messages coming over the ringing are LIES.  The sufferer adapts by simply screening out the ever-present noise.

So, Howie, it isn't that we don't hear...all the freaking time...the "messaging" flowing out of the White House and its organs.  We've just learned to ignore it.  Our brains adapt.  America has moved on.  We don't CARE what they are saying.  And pretending to pay attention...or worse, believe anything we are an exercise in cognitive dissonance.  Or DELUSION.

See, Howie, Americans have Obama's number now...he's a known quantity.  Most of us are biding time until his day in the sun is over.  It is going to be a LONNNNNNGGGG twilight.  We understand that the Obamic Tinnitus is just something we have to suffer through for a little longer.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

BURN: Stupid PC Headline Of The Day (thus far)

From Tina Brown's Daily Bust--

Shark Kills California Surfer
Could have been mistaken for prey.

Yep.  There you have it.  Just a case of mistaken identity.  Chalk it up to sharkish error.

Sharks don't kill people; people acting like shark bait kill people.  Things is, to a shark, everything in the water is "prey"...except shark no error there.

CRASH: I've Been A Bad Blogger...And MORE!

I have been frightfully derelict in posting here.  There is a reason, of course...maybe several.  What is more, I haven't so much as read another blog in weeks.

This is very unlike my usual habits.  I normally absorb several blogs, and scan at least several more.  In some respects, I've missed it.  But in others...not so much.

I have listened...when Mr. Limbaugh, and have not felt out of the loop to any appreciable degree.  This may be partly this point in the great panoply of life...things are actually pretty much going as I would expect.

I am a practicing trial attorney.  I like what I do...usually.  Sometimes I hate it...especially the caprice I encounter in the courtroom, mostly from judges who either don't know the rules or don't care about them. 

But one thing I love about the work I do is having the opportunity to take what another attorney...or a series of others...has made a hash of, and put it back on the rails.  This is very much playing to my (warped) type.  See, I have this spooky capacity to focus on a case, to understand the forces in play, and to creatively find a resolution to it.  It's almost like I was made for this kind of situation.  So, I have been in my "deep immersion" mode, and little else has mattered to me.

Balance is NEVER my forte, but I usually do better.  Sometimes, though, you just have to let all pretense go, and be the critter you are.  One thing I've noticed about the world swirling around me currently...a lot of the other critters are behaving just as I know they will.  Comforting, in a way...

Monday, October 11, 2010

BURN: Green Government Intervention - What Could Go Wrong?


Via Allahpundit - hot off the Hot Air Presses!  Seems the proletariat's greenishly awesome car of the future (A.K.A Chevy Volt) is…“even more lemony than thought.”  Go figure.

In days of old when chrome was gold…the titans of Motown could take some iron ore and chrome and nimbly fashion it into a marvelously magical – yet affordable phenomenon.  People wanted V8s and chrome, gas was $.19/gal and the earth needed more carbon in the stratosphere.   Detroit also had an awe-inspiring concept of the future.  Journey with me into a wondrously mystical vision of the future from the past!  Which would technically be now, I think.  Behold the future – then!  Whatever… 

Better Living Through Technology
These stunning concept cars never seemed to cross the threshold into reality because – according to the gods of Automotivia – they were simply too advanced for their time.  I might suggest another reason.  They were just, ah, what’s the word?  Silly.  Detroit in the 50’s and 60’s couldn’t build cars fast enough to meet demand and had mountains of money coming out of their exhaust manifolds– so they made silly but interesting concept cars for people to go Oooo and aaah about, but mostly for grins and giggles.

Advertising models also seem to have evolved
But now it’s different.  The government is using our money to develop the car of the future.  We have now evolved from silliness to insanity!  Seems a few glitches have popped up. This planet saver was promised to deliver 230 MPG!  But hold on...Gov Motors and Barry O may have overestimated the performance a wee bit – like about 1000%.  Via Jalopnik:
  • Popular Mechanics saw just 37.5 MPG in city driving.
  • Car and Driver  found with all-electric driving "...getting on the nearest highway and commuting with the 80-mph flow of traffic-basically the worst-case scenario-yielded 26 miles; a fairly spirited back-road loop netted 31; and a carefully modulated cruise below 60 mph pushed the figure into the upper 30s."
  • Motor Trend, like the rest of the trade press other than Popular Mechanics, didn't appear to do any testing in city conditions, but did find that  "Without any plugging in, [a weeklong trip to Grandma's house] should return fuel economy in the high 30s to low 40s."
Well that’s just spiffy.  In 1974 I had a Datsun econobox that got 35 MPG.  My, how we’ve advanced!  Another veracity challenged Voltish problem. "Since the Volt was first unveiled as a concept car, GM engineers and executives have claimed adamantly that the internal combustion engine did not motivate the wheels.  This meant that the gasoline engine was nothing more than a "range extender" designed only to charge the batteries which would allow the electric drivetrain to continue to move the car.  We're now told by Volt's engineering team that when the Volt's lithium-ion battery pack runs down and at speeds near or above 70 mph the Volt's gasoline engine will directly drive the front wheels along with the electric motors."

This means that our tax funded, futuristic, cutting edge green dream machine is nothing more than a glorified hybrid.  Alrighty then.  When deciding on my next vehicle purchase, I’ll need to consider:
  • The Volt econo-box will sell at $41,000 or the same range as a mid-level Mercedes, BMW or Lexus.  But I’ll feel all green inside.
  • Serviceability, reliability, maintenance costs?  Unknown.  (But the batteries will need to be replaced eventually for about $5,000 to $9,000.  The theory is that when we all buy these, the economy of scale will kick in and the price will come down.  Heh. Right.
  • Resale value?  Unknown.  Would depend upon the previous points I expect.
  • Electric cost for plugging it in every night?  Unknown.
  • How many tons of coal will be burned to charge this puppy up?  Unknown.  (50% of electric generation in the US is coal fired)
  • Safety?  Unknown.  It seems the Lithium Ion batteries used to power this mean green machine have a rather nasty history of spontaneously exploding.  Not to worry.  Volt comes with flame-proof jump suits for the back seat kiddies - in a variety of earth tone colors!

UPS DC-8 - Spontaneous combustion of Li Ion batteries in cargo
Dude, your Dell exploded.
Good enough for me!  Put me down for an LX 4 door in the “Earthy Green” color option.  And a nice sound system.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

CRASH: Hail Caesar Obamus


Oxford scholar Jack Carlson thinks the rise and fall of The Obamanian Empire is all about image.

“Obama as Roman Emperor -- the rise and fall of the propaganda masterPresident Barack Obama's campaign of images, emotions, and themes won him tremendous popularity – and the presidency.”  Carlson says to understand the 'ruler cult' cycle, we must look to the first Roman emperor Augustus, and his use of “portrait-type” images disseminated and recreated for public consumption across the empire in the form of statues, coins, and other artworks. 

It seems he was also adept at associating his image with the gods, and with iconic Roman heroes past - and inscribing coins bearing his likeness with lofty “buzz words” like – CONCORDIA (union); RESTITUTOR (restorer or renewer); and, most strikingly, SPES (hope).   No denying Ceasar Salad Obamus used images in a huge way.

While Carlson has an interesting point - there seems to be a serious flaw in this picture.  Augustus Caesar reigned for life and laid the foundation of an empire and government system that spanned fifteen hundred years.  His legend only grew larger over time.  Augustus was a man of wisdom, character and heroic accomplishment, while “Caesar Obamus”, it would seem, is a legend soley in his own mind - who has lost his divine radiance in just 18 months.  I rather doubt future generations  will see the 8th month named for Augustus changed to “OBAM". 

I think a key difference is that in our supposedly “advanced” culture, a guy with a Jersey accent named Vince can sell millions of folks cleaning rags (mockingly called "Sham" - Wow) and plastic slicer/dicers at $19.95 a pop.  You don’t need to read the “Consumer Reports” evaluation to know that the majority of folks who “acted now!!” and spent twenty bucks for a dish rag that won’t do what a 50 cent sponge does, feel ripped off – and I’d bet the remainder just don’t want to admit they were so easily conned.

Americans, regrettably comprised unanimously of human beings – and who are mostly products of dumbed-down public education (AND COLLEGES) – have a regrettable penchant to be swayed by slick rhetoric and lofty hyperbole, and to be rather easily misled by faulty reasoning.  It’s interesting that the classic “logical fallacies” used and abused by our mind-numbing politicians, “pitch men” and Lamestream Media elite were known and understood 500 years before Augustus, yet seem even more effective today than then. 

“We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”

“This was the moment the rising of the oceans began to slow, and our planet began to heal!”

"We cannot rebuild this economy on the same pile of sand.  We must build our house upon a rock. We must lay a new foundation for growth and prosperity…”

The reason for [insert negative phenomenon here] is Bush.  Republicans want you to die quickly.  Obamacare will be deficit neutral.  Tax cuts benefit only the rich.  The science is settled.  Economists / Geologists / Climatologists / Experts agree that [insert your opinion here].  The Tea Party is ignorant / racist / islamaphobe / homophobe / hateful / dangerous.  9/11 was an inside job.  Obama is not a US citizen….yada, yada.

I suspect Shakespeare knew about Obama: 

[Obamaius] is but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is
a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing
– Macbeth

"So let it be written, so let it be done!"
- Yul Brynner / A.K.A Rameses II

Saturday, October 9, 2010

CRASH: Q-less

special agent swede

The reason Bin Laden and his evil ilk remain a threat to the civilized world is quite simple. There is no Bond, James Bond.  In a local theater at the age of ten, the Goldfinger revelation proved to us beyond any reasonable doubt that no malevolent evil could exist as long as Sean Connery was on the scene.  No suaver, machoer or more effective anti-crime agent than 007 has ever drawn a breath.  Sorry,  contemporary “Bonds” are wimpy wannabe’s.

And his ride?  Get outta here.  The ’63 Aston Martin DB5 is to this day the most awesomest fusion of sophisticated, high-class auto-testosterone and high-tech weaponry ever conceived.  In sixth grade 1965, if you were anybody, you had a 1/24 scale plastic model displayed prominently in your room…like an alter.  Perhaps inhaling the airplane glue during assembly may have added to the mystique.

It seems the actual legendary Bond-mobile has been sitting in the Philly home of radio mogul Jerry Lee since 1969, and is going on the auction block this month.  I simply must own this automobile.  My only problem being the estimated auction price will likely top £7 mil ($10 mil US) – and after reviewing my budget, I think I can come up with about $750 – or perhaps $150,750 if I sell my house.  So I am now soliciting donations for the balance needed.  Think about it my friends, this involves no less than the survival of civilization as we know it.

Forget nukes, if Ahmadinijad gets his hands on Bond’s DB5 he will rule the planet, and you know it!  Please, either consider giving generously to my cause, or prepare to submit to the Twelfth Imam!  Do the right thing!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

BURN: Never Hire Anyone With A Hispanic Name

The BIG take-away from the Meg Whitman-illegal alien flap is clear; if you even remotely DREAM of having a political career, or serving in government in ANY capacity, NEVER, EVER hire anyone with a Hispanic last name.

Not  as a house-keeper; not as a tradesman; not as ANYTHING.  Just DON'T DO IT.  Because, if you do, and EVEN Meg Whitman and her husband TRY to comply with the law, doing everything you know how to do...or even COULD do legally (i.e., without violating a job-seeker's privacy rights), some scum-sucking pol will use it to smear you if they can (see Allred, Gloria).

Now, that is fundamentally unfair.  It is horrendous.  But it is also inescapably TRUE.

Several people...Hugh Hewitt, Mark Levin (both lawyers)...have eviscerated Gloria Allred in interviews on this mess.  Nobody, IMNHO, did it better than Greta Van Susteren--

The same holds true of anyone who might apply to you for a job who has an Oriental last name, an Irish accent, or an Eastern European accent.  You CANNOT afford to hire them.  Even AFTER they present you with what APPEAR to be genuine documents, and you do what you can to confirm their authenticity, you just can't take the risk that they are false, and your applicant a liar, perjurer, criminal, and illegal alien like Nicky Diaz Santillan.

IF you get a cryptic letter from the government (ANY government) that raises ANY question as to the legal status of an employee, FIRE them immediately if you live in a "at-will" employment state, or start looking for a cause to fire them if you have to have one in your state.

Because there are people like Gloria Allred who will burn anyone down to smear you, just like she has burned her client, Nicky Diaz, to foster the political fortunes of their favorite candidate.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

CRASH: No Worries Mate! Go Postal!


When I was naught but a pup, the first real job I ever had was a government job with the Department of Natural Resources as an assistant park manager.  It was such a cool gig I actually cut off my hippie hair to get an edge.   

I managed park operations, maintenance, and fire control for a 10K acre park.  The regional and park managers were awesome guys and we had a blast.  I loved it at first – then, not so much.

The maintenance crew were mostly old union guys. Heh.  Have to admit I thoroughly enjoyed pssn them off, making them actually work and getting the loathy stares – then they had to pretend they liked me!  Employee Performance Evaluation? (1 - 10):  Yeah, right.  Showed up = 9. I have no doubt those guys wasted $100 for every $1 I could save. 

Then there was the annual Cinderella budget fairytale for DNR HQ and the State House (A.K.A the Snake House).  First, you figure annual operating costs – then you pile 30 – 40% on the top of everything – then try to make up line item “requirements” for it.   

Page 21, Section 6, sub sec B, item 27:  Description: One (MOL) precision rotary landscape maintenance aesthetic enhancement apparatus. (That’s a weedwacker to you civilians.)

The bean counters downtown knock off 15 – 20% to justify their existance, so you end up with more than you needed.  But then, if you get to the third quarter, and are operating under budget, you must spend money like crazy on absolutely anything and bury it in “operations” and “unanticipated expense.” If you don’t spend it, they’ll cut your budget next year.  No big secret.  Everybody knows it.  That’s how Government works.

There is absolutely no incentive to be efficient, effective or innovative in government service – in fact quite the opposite.  So Federal Government  is expanding like a Rosie O'Donnel's backside, creating the greatest deficit in the history of the universe - and every other sector of the economy is in deep, deep weeds.  No jobs, no place, no how??  Nooooo problemo senior y senioritas! Heeeeeres Uncle Sammy!!!


You guessed it!  The Postal Service Needs You!  (And, yes, we know the Postal Service is quasi-Federal employment.)  Hey, if they’re hiring like crazy with full benefits, they must be rollin’ in stamp money, right?  Uuuuummm…

Washington - The U.S. Postal Service ended the third quarter of fiscal year 2010 (April 1 – June 30) with a net loss of $3.5 billion, compared with a net loss of $2.4 billion for the same quarter last year. Third-quarter mail volume totaled 40.9 billion pieces – down approximately 700 million pieces, or 1.7 percent, compared to a year ago.  The Postal Service has incurred net losses in 14 of the last 16 fiscal quarters. The fiscal 2010 year-to-date net loss is $5.4 billion, compared to a loss in the same period last year of $4.7 billion. 

The increase in operating expenses was attributable largely to higher workers’ compensation expenses due to a non-cash fair value adjustment and higher retiree health benefits expenses. Lower interest rates adversely affected the workers’ compensation liability, resulting in a $2 billion expense for the quarter – $870 million higher than the same quarter last year.
Ya think!!?!?  Volume/Revinue in: Down 20%.  Expenses: Up 20%.  Ah, what to do?  Why, hire more help!  Gotta love that union!
The Gross National Debt

Well you know, it must be the 8 years of failed Bush economic policies.  Yeah, that’s it.  The economy.   Nooobody could break even hauling letters and packages in this mess!

Huh.  Maybe it's something else?  Via USA Today:
  • An unskilled laborer starting at GS-1 starts at $21,500 with full benefits, or about 3 times the national minimum wage.
  • All Federal employees are virtually guaranteed to reach GS-10 ($50K to $65K) with full pension and health care for life.  This is based solely on seniority - no performance merit is recognized.
  • After the initial one year probationary period, it is virtually impossible to lay off or fire a GS employee – and certainly never for non-productivity.  We will pay these folks full benefits until they die. (Can you say...Greek Tragedy!)
  • On average, federal employees earned $71,206 per year -  to $40,331 in the private sector.
  • From 2007 through 2009, average federal employee salaries increased by 6.6 percent, while average private-sector salaries increased by 3.9 percent. Federal employees at the top of the pay scale received pay increases of 8.6 percent during that period.
  • The number of federal employees making more than $100,000 has more than doubled in less than two years. There are now more federal employees making more than $100,000 per year than $40,000 per year.
  • Just for comparison - The young, inexperienced but "qualified" (?) professional pilots who flew a perfectly functioning aircraft into a house in Buffalo, taking 50 lives, were making $17K.  No benefits.
Well, there you have it.  I think I’m going POSTAL now...Adios amigos!