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Showing posts from April 23, 2006
Senators Leave Gas Station in Gas Guzzling Cars Hypocrites! Don't dare lecture me again on conserving gas or railing about the evils of SUVs.
Is The 2005 Priest Story A Fraud? Hmmm...this one certainly has some merit. Is the entire article recycled? I was uncertain about the sourcing. It's very likely that each government would deny the existence of such prisons if they did have them but something else bothered me about that one and I can't quite put my finger on it. I have no doubt she won b/c the article hurt the President and spilled State secrets. The MSM loves that kind of thing. Nonetheless, nothing will change. The prize would never be revoked, even if the above article is true. They still haven't revoked Walter Durante's.
Andrew "I have but one brush and it is very broad" Sullivan has a post entitled The War on Illegals. He posits that the reason these vermin assualted the man is because of the rhetoric about illegal activity (specifically immigration) in this country. The man has become so sloppy lately it's hard believe he's the same guy I was reading in 2000. Does he really believe nothing would have happened if there had been no debate about immigration? Does he also believe there is a "war on illegals"? Is he serious? There is nothing approaching a "war" on illegals. I war, I mean a real, concerted effort to rid the country of illegals is so far from reality I don't even know where to start. A real "war" (I'm assuming he's not talking about armed conflict) would see mass arrest and interment of illegals followed by trainloads of people taken to processing centers on the border of Mexico where they would be photographed, fingerprin…
Wired 14.04: The Culture War. Is there no end to the corruption of youth!?
Brilliant! Reason #3,429,012 why I love college students.
Chirac unveils his grand plan to restore French pride. Msr Chirac has clearly lost his mind. He thinks he can get into the seach engine game now and defeat Google? I can only don my cynics hat and assume he knows this isn't going to work but he has to do something and pumping money into the IT sector may do something positive. He says he wants to "raise the global profile of French industry and avoid a future in which France was known only as a 'museum country'."

Um, check the present. You're already a country of museums and monuments and one film festival.

When I was in college, our French exchange students were aghast that France didn't have a reputation for being market leaders in either technology or engineering. We got a map and showed them where Japan and Germany were. They were not amused. I sure thought it was funny.
Actual Democrat/Liberal questionaire:

Should the US be in the business of toppling dictators and tyrants? If not, why not? If so, how?
Foreign Affairs - Saddam's Delusions: The View From the Inside - Kevin Woods, James Lacey, and Williamson Murray: "Ali Hassan al-Majid, known as 'Chemical Ali' for his use of chemical weapons on Kurdish civilians in 1987, was convinced Iraq no longer possessed WMD but claims that many within Iraq's ruling circle never stopped believing that the weapons still existed. Even at the highest echelons of the regime, when it came to WMD there was always some element of doubt about the truth. According to Chemical Ali, Saddam was asked about the weapons during a meeting with members of the Revolutionary Command Council. He replied that Iraq did not have WMD but flatly rejected a suggestion that the regime remove all doubts to the contrary, going on to explain that such a declaration might encourage the Israelis to attack. [See Footnote #1 below]"

Footnote #1 reads:

"For many months after the fall of Baghdad, a number of senior Iraqi officials in coalition custod…
Finding Little Solace in Sharing of Long-Guarded Secret. Sometimes the pain lasts for decades. Sometimes it never heals. This is one of the most heart wrenching stories I've read in a long, long time. How he managed to overcome such a violation is something I hope I never know. He was mistreated by everyone and survived intact, whole. It pains me to know that people in the church can treat each other with such malice and disregard.
The Plank shows there may be limits to loyalty. Here's hoping he does the same with the Railroad to Nowhere.
BREITBART.COM - XM Satellite Radio Reports Wider 1Q Loss. XM is not long for this world. They cannot compete with Howard. The rest of the content is virtually indistinquishable. (I should know, I have both.) Once Sirius releases the conversion kit, they are really going to win people over. XM's chairman recently quit in the wake of wild spending and said the company was in dangerous waters. XM will either be taken over by Sirius or fold entirely. I give them 2 years at most.
Daily Pundit is right. As of now, I'm out. They're going to have move mountains to make me come back.
How do you define Middle class? My wife and I have been debating this one of late. What does it mean to be Middle class in America? Is it a financial designation, a social one or something else?

I submit that middle class is part income and part values. As noted in the linked entry, "bourgeois values" account for at least part of the definition. I would argue, that's a big part. Upward mobility or at least, the desire for upward mobility (usually through education or other self-betterment) is a key component.

In my admittedly limited experience, lower class parents want their kids to do as they did. They do not want them to exceed their own achievements as that would diminish them somehow. One guy I went to college with was no longer on speaking terms with his father. His father resented that his son wanted to be better than him. Working the docks in Baltimore was supposed to be good enough and it was a job for a "real man" not going to college. I th…
If it's Thursday that can only mean one thing; Car pr0n.

The Maybach Excelero is a one off punatively expensive platform to show off some tires nobody's ever heard of. AutoWeek has a cached article about driving the thing. It says that no other copies will be built. This conflicts with other reports that Maybach would build one for $8,000,000. I'm a car fanatic. If I had money, I'd spend quite a bit on cars. That said, I can't imagine every spending anything approaching that for a car. I mean, there comes a point when you have to step back and say, one of a kind or not, it's still just a car.
BloggingHeads.tv has a debate about putting our presence to a vote in Iraq. Make it a referendum on our presence there and once voted upon will not be revisited for a few years (Jonah says 5). I think this is pure brilliance. It would put an end to the question of whether we should stay. The Iraqis would vote in their best interests. If they think it's best we left, I'd be happy for us to come home but only if we're asked to leave. Leaving on our own accord now would be quitting. Leaving b/c we're told to is resepecting the sovereignty of Iraq. Either way it goes, the Democrats lose. If we came home they'd be crowing but they still wouldn't have any ideas. If they asked us to stay they wouldn't have anywhere to go.
Why are the Republicans in power? Because Nancy Pelosi is given a microphone. More please. Give her a weekly national hour long show through November and we'll see the GOP pick up more than a few seats.

NB: I'm not wishing for a GOP landslide in November. They have shown themselves to be inveterate spenders with authoritarian impulses. They deserve to lose. However, when I hear Pelosi speak, I will gladly pay for stupid programs the GOP is funding if it means keeping Pelosi and her ilk from controlling the direction of the country.
Damnit. I hate when I'm wrong. I made a comment on De la Where to the effect that private transportation accounts for a small percentage of oil consumption. Probably not true. The graph shows the demand for oil by sector from 1950-2002. Initially, I had misinterpreted the graph. I didn't realize the pink, yellow and blue portions of the graph were incrimental increases not aggregate numbers. Additionally, this graph shows demand by product. Motor gasoline is by far the largest sector and transportation comprises the vast majority of that sector. I've been unable to find any data that breaks down the difference in consumption between private/consumer transporation and commercial/fleet and trucking. However, given that most trucks and buses run on diesel and not motor gasoline the point stands. Private, consumer demand is the bulk of oil consumption and, more specifically, motor gasoline.

I think the other point I was confusing was not consumption but emissions. P…
I have reluctantly enabled word verification in a vainglorious attempt to deter spammers. Sorry for the inconvenience. I'll turn it off in a week or so.

Thanks for your patience.
Popular Mechanics - Crunching The Numbers On Alternative Fuels

Energy continues to be the elephant in the room. PM once again proves itself to be a top notch reporting outfit. This article should have run in either NYT or WSJ months ago when this whole issue flared up. They weight the merits of each type of alternative fuel from both a cost as well as practical perspective. Read the whole thing, it will probably surprise you.

The side by side comparison is here
Why The Pump Isn't More Painful According to the article energy expense as a percentage of GDP has dropped dramatically which accounts for the inelasticity of demand at the pump. That's all well and good but in the end, people have fixed expenses when it comes to fuel. Yes I may think twice about going hither or yon given the cost of fuel, but I still have to get to work every day which acccounts for probably 80% of my cost. Likewise, truckers have to pull their loads and no increase in cost of fuel is going to decrease that demand. (Theoretically there is an upper limit but I can't imagine where it might be).

This war for oil seems like a bum deal to me. I'm paying now more than ever three years after we conquered a peaceable, non-threatening nation for their oil. Maybe someone can explain it to me.
File this under Red on RedGreenpeace takes Kennedy to task. Kennedy shows his true NIMBY stripes. Heaven forfend we see windmills from his mansion! Kudos to Greenpeace for showing some principle.
Light, Sexy And Fun To Drive says Business week. The Loremo makes some remarkable claims. Like gas milage. 157 miles per gallon. That would get me from my house to New York City on less than a gallon of gas. That's $2.50 in gas and $36 in tolls. I, for one, would buy one of these in a heartbeat provided the safety and mpg claims actually stand up. Color me skeptical. The use of plastics and composites are certainly long overdue but I suspect regulation will add significant weight and cost to make the car perform much less than spec'd. Even so, if you dropped the milage by half it would still far outperform anything on the road today. If and when these come to market, they will be wildly popular and could have significant downward pressure on prices at the pump. Here's hoping.
Some people claim to be Star Trek fans. They are pikers compared to this guy. No wonder he's divorced. I gotta admire his ingenuity. He could probably make a fortune building these rooms for the rest of the Trekkies flush with cash and looking for something to spend it on.
Strategy Page gives the lowdown on Netcentric warfare in Iraq. The Army of Davids indeed. I'm glad they embraced the technology instead of simply shutting it down. Perhaps the departure of the old guard of late signals that the luddites are finally leaving in sufficient numbers for Transformation to really take hold.
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One Step Ahead
You are 72% likely to survive the end of the world. You're alive, with minimal effects from whatever disaster struck. You're in good health, with moderate supplies, have a plan, and maybe a few other survivors with you to help out with manual labor. Congrats, you're gonna do just fine when all hell breaks loose.


My test tracked 1 variable How you compared to other people your age and gender:You scored higher than 60% on spLink: The Apocalypse Survival Test written by ci8db4uok on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the 32-Type Dating Test
This is interesting. The potential for abuse is very high. It would not surprise me if this replaces Rohypnol as the premier date rape drug. It would, however be a boon to people taking anti-depressants or with other maladies that cause lowered libido.
Flopping Aces talks about The Democrat Mole In The CIA Fired. Ms. McCarthy is no stranger to politics and by accounts has a history of blabbing to reporters. In From The Cold has a rundown of just what happened and how McCarthy got her job in the first place. Spook86 points to political connections as the reason she leaped over more tenured and qualified officers to obtain her NIO post. Flopping Aces connects the dots between McCarthy, Beers, John "Magic Hat" Kerry and Joe Wilson. The whole thing stinks. She is a partisan with an agenda. If she were principled, she would have quit and gone to the press openly and faced her day in court with a clear conscious. Maybe now Porter Goss will start cleaning house in earnest and prosecuting leakers vigorously. Both parties love leaks when they damage their opponents. The media lives on them. Why a journalist isn't prosecuted for receiving classified information is beyond me. If McCarthy had stolen a car and given it …
USA National Gas Temperature Map. An interesting map detailing the relative fuel costs around the country.