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March 03, 2015

Overnight Open Thread (3-3-2015)


Thanks to CAC for filling in last night with very short notice. All of us should help out with AOSHQDD on the next election to say thank you for all he does around here.

Do Not Mess With Former Major League Baseball Star Curt Schilling's Daughter

Because he has a very particular set of skills which include the four-seam fastball, the split-finger fastball as well as tracking down and putting the hurt on Twitter trolls who tweeted vile things to his daughter. And it turns out that not only is Schilling an amazing ball player, but that he's also quite computer savvy, a very loving and protective father, an interesting writer, and a general mensch. (H/T Jim Geraghty's Morning Jolt)

Now I've been using computers since 1981. I was a professional baseball player for 22 years. I played 10+ years in Philadelphia. I played 5 in Boston. I shared a locker room with well over a thousand teammates and I played and lived at school a year before doing so.

That's all to say I am absolutely aware of social media and how it works. As someone who's said about 2.34 billion things he shouldn't have, I get it.

...Now let me emphasize again. I was a jock my whole life. I played sports my whole life. Baseball since I was 5 until I retired at 41. I know clubhouses. I lived in a dorm. I get it. Guys will be guys. Guys will say dumb crap, often. But I can't ever remember, drunk, in a clubhouse, with best friends, with anyone, ever speaking like this to someone.
This is a generation of kids who have grown up behind the monitor and keyboard. The real world has consequences when you do and say things about others. We're at a point now where you better be sure who you're going after.

If I was a deranged protective dad I could have been face to face with any of these people in less than 4 hours. I know every one of their names, their parents, where they go to school, what they do, what team they are on, their positions, stats, all of it. I had to do almost nothing to get ANY of that information because it is all public.

What part of talking about a young woman, my daughter or not, makes you even consider the possibility that this is either funny or makes you tough?

I found it rather funny at how quickly tone changed when I heard via email from a few athletes who'd been suspended by their coaches. Gone was the tough guy tweeter, replaced by the "I'm so sorry apology used by those only sorry because they got caught.

It was EXACTLY like the Scared Straight episodes you watch where "tough" kids get brought to tears when they face the real world.

What these kids are failing to realize, what this generation fails to realize is this; Everything they've just said and done? That is out there now, forever. It can, and in some cases will, follow them for the rest of their lives.


How Spock Became a Sex Symbol

That's why he fit the part of Spock. "All I wanted at first was pointed ears and a faintly satanic appearance," said series creator Gene Roddenberry in "The Making of Star Trek," published in 1968.

Spock's "alien features" - as Roddenberry called them in the book - weren't limited to prostheses. Nimoy was handsome, but not in a way that Hollywood in 1966 recognized. He didn't look like a leading man. He looked like what he was: the son of Ukrainian Jewish immigrants. And if you looked like that, you were a character actor, not a star.

But Nimoy became a star. He was a Method actor and in creating Spock, he gave what could have been a gimmicky, two-dimensional character hidden depths. Those hidden depths in turn gave him sex appeal. Within the show's plots, Captain Kirk was the lady killer. But Spock was the one who made female viewers swoon.


Continue reading

Posted by Maetenloch at 10:05 PM Comments

Neil Tyson Has Nothing to Say But He Says It An Awful Lot


Sorry, I'm just so sick about what Obama's done to this country, and what this country has permitted him to do.

Enjoy, if you can, alleged Master of Science Neil Tyson repeatedly saying the same stupid shit to his sheep and garnering literally thousands of retweets for each identical iteration.

Oh, and Boehner and his people claimed there was no "deal" struck with the Democrats for the DHS vote.

Boehner and his people were, get this, lying.

Great piece on Obama's pompous, "provincial" foreign policy.

In November 2009, German chancellor Angela Merkel invited US President Barack Obama, still in his first year in office, to attend the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall....

The leaders of Europe were all in attendance, from the prime minister of Britain to the presidents of France and Russia. Obama, however, was not.

The president was busy, the White House said, citing "commitments for an upcoming Asia trip."

The Europeans were shocked. "Barack is too busy," read the acerbic headline in Der Spiegel.

The event didn’t really clash with his schedule, but rather with his foreign policy sensibilities. Obama would travel to Copenhagen a month before the event to lobby the International Olympic Committee to grant the 2016 summer games to his hometown of Chicago, and would return to Europe a month after the commemoration to accept the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo. His travel itinerary as president signaled something about his vision of the world, and of America’s and his administration's place in it. The commemoration of America’s rescue of Europe did not rank high in that vision.


At a recent gathering of the Israel Council on Foreign Relations, the eminent former director general of the Foreign Ministry, Prof. Shlomo Avineri, called Obama's foreign policy "provincial." It was a strange choice of words to describe the policies of a president with such a cosmopolitan outlook and so much eagerness to engage the world.

But Avineri had a point....

"In every society, young men are going to have violent tendencies," an educator in one majority-black Chicago high school told him in the late 1980s. "Either those tendencies are directed and disciplined in creative pursuits or those tendencies destroy the young men, or the society, or both."

The book is full of such ruminations, and they echo throughout Obama’s rhetoric as president. In his last speech to the UN General Assembly, he asserted that "if young people live in places where the only option is between the dictates of a state or the lure of an extremist underground, no counterterrorism strategy can succeed."

For Obama, terrorism is, at root, a product of social disintegration. War may be necessary to contain the spread of Islamic State, for example, but only social reform can really cure it....

Posted by Ace at 07:34 PM Comments

"Failure Theater," Or Why I Am Now a Democrat


Someone Storified this for me.

I'm done.

Posted by Ace at 05:08 PM Comments

It's Over: Boehner, Boehner's Establishment Allies, and Democrats Unite to Fund Obama's Executive Amnesty


I'm personally done with this party.

In fact, I will vote for Democrats.

An old communist friend of mine voted for Bob Dole.

Why? Because this communist was convinced, inaccurately, as it would later turn out, that he would never see his dream of a communist USA via conventional politics, and therefore his hopes were pinned on outright revolution.

And as far as revolution, there are four words to remember: The worse, the better.

It is now clear that none of us will see the America we want via any kind of politics that includes the Republican Party. Ergo, they must be erased from the pages of history as quickly as possible, so that a better party can replace them.

So I'm now a Democrat. The worse, the better.

It may be time to begin supporting things like an increase in the minimum wage, too:

He's talking about the National Association of Restaurants which, of course, would prefer to hire immigrants over Americans. Actually, restaurants have been doing that for like 30 years; they wish to do it legally.

So if they're going to fight for cheaper labor, let us then mandate that all labor must cost $15/ hour, no exceptions, so that they do not get their wish.

My politics is now entirely punitive.

Oh, by the way, conservatives are now reduced to begging Republicans not to save Obamacare.

Begging, actually.

Posted by Ace at 03:23 PM Comments

As Expected, John Boehner Sells Out the Conservatives In Yet Another Performance of "Failure Theater"


Failure Theater is the process by which the Establishment deliberately fails to do achieve anything, but wants credit from the Dumb Conservatives they're playing to for allegedly "trying."

Each of Boehner's and McConnell's "defeats" are in fact planned in advance. They are not trying to advance the conservative agenda; they are attempting to con conservatives into believing they have attempted to implement conservative policy, when in fact they were delivering their political deliverables to their Donor Class paymasters all along.

Uneducated, gullible, and easily led: if we stand for this, we are exactly what the Washington Post slurred us as 30 years ago.

Posted by Ace at 02:21 PM Comments

When a Veterans Group FOIA'd Hillary's Emails, They Specifically Asked Her to List Her Personal Email Accounts. She Didn't.


Unrelated to this new revelation, but on point:

Well I'll say.

What a b!rd br@!n this fucking bitch is.

Posted by Ace at 01:45 PM Comments

Confirmed: The Left Pretty Much Freaks Out When a Jew Tells Them They're Wrong


Spazzy McDewers objected to people smiling.

Update [JohnE.]: And the cherry on top...

Posted by Ace at 12:21 PM Comments

Netanyahu Speaking Now Before Congress


Live player at at FoxNews.

It's early. He's... talking about being grateful to Obama for stuff, so you know he's just getting started.

Posted by Ace at 11:16 AM Comments

Open Thread


Albert Julius Olsson, "Waves Breaking on the Shore" (n.d.)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:29 AM Comments

Good Morning


The sun.

Posted by rdbrewer at 08:35 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (3-2-2015)


Maetenloch locked himself in his own car, and with him out of the picture I was called in to bring you all the finest medicine for your late night needs. Besides, Hillary will be President anyway in two years time, and the country has gone to pot enough as it is, so you might as well take up a new habit early.

So roll that towel under your door, aim that window fan just right, and come join me on the first and last time the cobs ever trust me to an ONT.

Or is it OOT?

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Posted by CAC at 04:20 AM Comments

Against the Law and the Constitution, Hillary Clinton Took Lavish Donations Bribes to Her "Foundation"


In case you were wondering, "How is it legal that the Clintons can take half a billion in donations bribes, almost a hundred of million of which are from foreign governments?," the answer turns out to be "It's totally not legal."

Now, the one exception to the Emoluments Clause is that the executive can review the bribe -- let's not pretend this is not a bribe, okay? -- and okay it. Earlier the State Department indicated that it had cleared Hillary Clinton's foreign bribes as "Obama-approved foreign bribery."

But now, via @JohnEkdahl, the State Department is retracting previous claims that it gave a Good Bribe seal of approval to Hillary Clinton's hundred million in foreign bribes.

>The State Department is stepping back from a spokeswoman's comment last week suggesting that the agency's ethics lawyers signed off on donations to the Clinton Foundation during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state.

Asked at a daily briefing Thursday about the foundation's failure to submit a $500,000 donation from the country of Algeria for a conflict of interest review in 2010, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters that the department did such reviews whenever the non-profit founded by former President Bill Clinton sent in information about a potential gift.

"We like to review -- and we have reviewed every donation that was submitted," Psaki said.

However, there are no indications any Clinton Foundation donations were ever sent to the State Department for approval.

Asked about Psaki’s comment, another State Department spokesperson said Monday that the reviews the agency did were of paid speeches Bill Clinton was proposing to make and business deals he wanted to enter into. From 2009 to 2012, hundreds of speech requests and a handful of consulting deals were sent to State Department lawyers for sign off. The vast majority were approved.

"We received requests regarding speeches and consultancies of former President Clinton," State spokesman Alec Gerlach said.

Clarifying Psaki's earlier comment, Gerlach said that State Department reviewed every request that came in, not every donation.

What a shock -- Jen Psaki is at the center of a snafu involving poor messaging and mental retardation.

The below video is a Dramatic Recreation of the State Department retracting its blessing of Hillary's bribes.

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Posted by Ace at 09:15 PM Comments

Democrats: Yeah, Your Boy Boehner Cut a Deal With Us on DHS Funding


Pull the plug already.

Conservatives were, in the Washington Post's notorious phrasing, "uneducated, gullible, and easily led."

If we let this pass without tumult and retribution, we are just as the Washington Post said of us.

I don't consider this all that important, but the Establishmentarians are running ads against conservatives, or at least pressuring them to vote for this Comprehensive Piece of Shit.

It's not about the ads, exactly; it's just about the attitude generally.

The time for a third party is now upon us. The Establishment has refused to compromise and find common ground; they are determined to just win and deliver their political deliverables to the Wall Street wing that serves as their paymasters.

A failing organization which will not be reformed must instead be destroyed.

BTW, the first order of business of the new party? Jacking up taxes on the wealthiest 1% and on corporations.

Can't keep taxes on the rich and corporations low, you know; it's not politically smart.

Posted by Ace at 06:52 PM Comments

Buzzfeed: The NY Observer Seems to Have a Kremlin Stooge Writing "Slavishly" Pro-Putin Stories for Them


"Slavishly." See what they did there?

Not only is this "writer" a stooge, but Buzzfeed raises the question (via raising the question) as to whether this "writer" actually exists in the form of an actual person, rather than (this is my supposition) as the work-product of several Kremlin hands pushing disinformation to the low-paying-but-content-hungry rags of the west.

A New York Observer editor says he's met this "writer," but who knows-- every propaganda effort needs a frontman.

Posted by Ace at 05:32 PM Comments

It's Been Three Years Since Andrew Breitbart Left Us


Twitchy noted this sad anniversary over the weekend.

Jim Geraghty won the ACU's Journalist of the Year Award on Friday, and has posted about what he would have liked to have said, had he more advanced warning that he'd be winning something and should prepare a speech for it.

I’ve been thinking a lot about Andrew Breitbart lately. It was three years ago he addressed this conference for the last time. People look back and I see him described as this angry guy, a fighter – he titled his autobiography "Righteous Indignation." I wouldn’t claim to be his best friend or to have known him well, but I don't think he’s given enough credit for being a man who was really driven by love.

That may sound kind of sappy or like it belongs on a Hallmark card, but he demonstrated an amazing kindness and generosity of spirit to those around him.

The day Andrew died, it seemed like everyone on my Facebook page posted a picture that they had taken with him. For a guy who was always on the go, he rarely if ever seemed like he didn’t have time for other people. So many people offered their tale of meeting him at a conference or gathering, getting to talk to him for ten minutes or so, and walking away from that conversation feeling like for that ten minutes, they were the most important person in the room. A lot of his fans, friends, and contributors to his site offer some version of the same story, meeting Breitbart and sharing a news tip and then being told by him, "that is a really good story idea, and you're the one who should write it." That’s what happened to my friend Kurt Schlichter, and there are so many people who got into writing or journalism because instead of holding onto a scoop or an idea for himself, Andrew told them they could do it. You don't treat people with such enthusiastic encouragement if you don’t have a lot of love for people.

I've mentioned this before, but Andrew's death kind of woke me up to thinking seriously about both Life and Death. 90% of the reason I post about health-related issues is because of Andrew's death -- he was the first contemporary of mine to die. When you're young, you really do think you're sort of Immortal, or at least you never think about mortality at all (which makes you a passive, ignorant believer in your own mortality).

Then one day a great big Surfing Bear of a man dies at a young age and you start thinking about it a lot.

But the fact that Andrew died young is just happenstance; that says little about him. The other thing his death forced me to think about was Life. There's no point fearing death if you're not loving life.

And Andrew's death forced me to confront the different ways we were living life -- to wit, he was and I wasn't. He was really alive, just excited and plugged in and enthusiastic and brave, so g**damned brave about everything.

I'm not really doing a terrific job of Living Each Day As If I Were Andrew Breitbart, but I am trying, here and there, to engage more with Actual Life and not treat it as something to be avoided.

Posted by Ace at 03:51 PM Comments

Jim Jordan Denies Plot to Demote John Boehner, While Rumors Swirl of a Plot to Demote John Bohner


Jordan says there is no plot, but the Plotters are indeed Plotting to Plot.

Two senior House Republican sources tell CNN there's a serious concern among those close to the Speaker that if he allowed a vote on a clean DHS funding bill, conservatives would make a motion to vacate the chair, a direct challenge to his job.

That is basically a no-confidence vote. The way CNN puts it -- and the way AllahPundit interprets it -- is that Boehner could be saved by Democrats, who would be part of the vote, and may prefer his incompetent leadership to a competent conservative's.

But I've heard some version of it where the vote takes place in the Republican caucus only.

I'll have to check on that.

Boehner clearly has to go. He cannot deliver for the Establishment -- he fails each time he tries to deliver political deliverables to the liberal anti-populists of the Establishment.

And he of course does not deliver to the conservative populists -- rather, what we ultimately pressure him into delivering unto us is Failure Theater, a dumbshow in which Republicans pretend to oppose Obama up until their scheduled capitulation.

We get all the pain of the media attacks on us for daring to oppose President Precious Perfect without actually opposing President Precious Perfect.

I don't think Confusius ever said Never leave a man who has staked his reputation on the claim that your plan will result in failure in charge of executing your plan, but he might have, if this celestial joyboy wasn't always obsessing about getting his weenie wet.

This is a case of being in the middle of the road where it's the most dangerous. Either deliver your deliverables to the Establishment elite, or deliver them to the populist rebels; but this shit by which you attempt to deliver to the Establishment, then fail, then go through the political damage of a shutdown without the political reward of a shutdown (that is, actual leverage over Obama), is, and please excuse my language here, For the Birds, and something only a (trigger alert) actual Bird Brain would support.

Here's a bit of trivia: I'm told the very best office in all of Washington DC is the Speaker of the House's office. It looks, via a wide and imperial balcony, over the national Mall.

A man might make a lot of decisions which are actually bad for his caucus to keep such a desirable blandishment.

A long time ago I read a trenchant criticism of McCain that always stuck with me. The writer (forget who) noted that there was indeed a "Reaganism" apart from the man himself -- that is, there were a series of propositions, ideas, and values which composed a freestanding "Reaganism" that was independent of the man himself.

But was there such a McCainism? No, of course not. There was nothing to any "McCainism" except the idea, dearly held by McCain and his hangers-on, that John McCain really ought to be in charge.

The same criticism obviously applies to Boehner. There is no "Boehnerism," no coherent "Boehner Agenda," apart from the very dubious proposition that Only One Man can lead the country and thus and so Providence has delivered unto us John Boehner.

Posted by Ace at 03:05 PM Comments

Australian Parachuter Has Grand Mal Epileptic Seizure Falling at 12,000 Feet Above the Earth


The camera is mounted on one guy's helmet, and he largely keeps the camera trained on the other guy.

Keep your eye on that other guy; he's the one who has the seizure.

Continue reading

Posted by Ace at 01:28 PM Comments

Revealed: Painter of Official White House Portrait of Bill Clinton Says He Included Monica Lewinsky's Shadow in Portrait, As a Goof


I did not want to write "portrait" twice in one sentence but what are you going to do.

What's done is done. Let's move on.

Aren't we all, in a way, to blame?

Man, that hands-on-hips, hips-bucked-forward is
kind of a giveaway now that it's pointed out

Philadelphia area painter Nelson Shanks cunningly included a shadow over the fireplace cast from a blue dress on a mannequin.

Shanks said painting Clinton was his hardest assignment because "he is probably the most famous liar of all time." So he added the nod to the Lewinsky scandal because it had cast a shadow over Clinton’s presidency.

If you look at the left-hand side of it there’s a mantle in the Oval Office and I put a shadow coming into the painting and it does two things. It actually literally represents a shadow from a blue dress that I had on a mannequin, that I had there while I was painting it, but not when he was there. It is also a bit of a metaphor in that it represents a shadow on the office he held, or on him.

He says Bill and Hillary Clinton are "aware" of the "symbolism" in the painting, and of course hate it.

Posted by Ace at 12:47 PM Comments

The Investigator Assigned to Find the Lerner Emails Must Have Been Blind to Have Missed Them For So Long
Update: He Was In Fact Legally Blind


The right man for the job, if you don't want the job done.

Also legally blind: The entire White House, which claims, through its new spokesman Jen Psaki, that they have no ideas about the motive in the murder of an American-Bangladeshi writer previous threatened with murder by Islamists for his allegedly unislamic writings.

Oh yeah: He was hacked to death by several men armed with knives. His wife was present at the attack; her finger was severed in the mayhem.

But Psaki has nothing to "ascribe" to the murder.

QUESTION: So on the Bangladesh murder --


QUESTION: -- does the -- is the Administration at a point where it can ascribe any kind of motive to this? Do you believe that it was anything more than just a murder? It certainly seems that the circumstances surrounding it would indicate that it is.

MS. PSAKI: We don’t have more information at this point. We, of course, will provide consular assistance as is appropriate. We’re also – stand ready to assist in the investigation if asked. Clearly, we know his background, which was why I outlined it, but don’t have anything to ascribe in terms of a motive in this case.

A-level people surround themselves with other A-level people. B-level people surround themselves with C-level people; C-level people surround themselves with D-level people. Obama surrounds himself with Marie Harf and Jen Psaki.

Posted by Ace at 11:35 AM Comments

Open Thread


William Lees Judson, "Evening Glow" (n.d.)

Posted by rdbrewer at 10:45 AM Comments

Had we but DOOM enough and time...



I hope this Monday morning finds you in robust good health, my groovy babies. You'll need your strength to fend off the waves of zombies, mutants, cannibals, and K Street lobbyists who will be infesting the land during the Burning Times.

King v Burwell is at the Supreme Court this week, but I don't pretend to have the faintest clue as to which way Roberts is going to vote. I am not an attorney nor do I play one on TV, so I really cannot rely on anything other than common sense to judge if the federal subsidies for states which haven't set up their own exchanges will stand or fall. I think the subsidies should fall, given the plain language of the statute, but then I thought the individual mandate was plainly unconstitutional as well and Chief Justice John Roberts found a way to be okay with it. Roberts had a chance to stop this whole abomination in its tracks some years back and chose to let it live on for what (to my untrained eye) were craven reasons. It's a little late in the day to be fretting about the damage this law will do if enforced as written. (But don't worry, hepcats: the GOP has a plan to save the day if the court rules against ObamaCare. Because Severely Conservative or something.)

His Majesty the King has taken time out of his busy schedule of golfing, selfie-taking, shit-talking, and trolling the GOP to heap scorn on a close American ally. To say that President Obama is thin-skinned is to understate the matter dramatically; he truly believes in vox Obama vox Dei, and he takes disagreement extremely personally. Obama has the bad professor's habit of lecturing people rather than talking to them, and in Bibi's case, Obama is lecturing a guy who's far more versed in the issues at hand than Obama is. But Obama is the smartest guy in any room (just ask him!) so it follows that any opinion he holds must be the correct one. Prime Minister Netanyahu will give his speech, Obama will disregard it with the same disdain he's shown for the past six years of his Presidency, and the middle east will slide that much deeper into chaos.

But enough of that nonsense. Let's get on to the financial shenanigans which are this column's raison d'etre.

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Posted by Monty at 09:00 AM Comments

Morning Thread

—Dave In Texas

I see a Ben's news dump and some DOOM on the way.

Morning y'all.

Posted by Dave In Texas at 07:52 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (3-1-2015)


Due to a sudden business trip all I can offer is this runt of an ONT.




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Posted by Maetenloch at 09:42 PM Comments

The Brzezinski Doctrine [Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

Keeping in mind that this is coming from a single newspaper in Kuwait, citing the ever popular "well placed sources" in Israel, if this is true, it could be the most disturbing thing Obama's done yet, actively preventing an ally from dealing with our enemy*.

Report: Obama Threatened to Shoot Down IAF Planes If Israel Struck Iran

This looking glass that we're going through Alice, when do we get to the other side?

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Posted by Open Blogger at 05:42 PM Comments

Food Thread: Burger, Burger, or Burger [CBD]

—Open Blogger


I divide serious burgers into two groups. The first is the gourmet burger; made with great beef cuts on an excellent bun (brioche usually), with good cheese...and nothing else. The second is sort of a fast-food burger, but a step up from McDonald's (although I love those burgers too). This burger is made with a wider and thinner patty, and has all the bells and whistles. Lettuce and tomato and pickles and onions and bacon (duh) and anything and everything else one can imagine. There is however one absolute; there must be sufficient sauce or dressing or juice to make it messy. Really, what's the fun of eating a big sloppy burger if it isn't sloppy?

What say you Horde? What is your perfect burger? Gourmet? high-end fast food? Luncheonette griddled?

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Posted by Open Blogger at 04:00 PM Comments

The Gaming Thread

—Gang of Gaming Morons!

Post something here

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Posted by Gang of Gaming Morons! at 03:20 PM Comments

Doom? Yeah, This Isn't Good [CBD]

—Open Blogger

Baltic Dry Index.jpg

The Baltic Dry Index is a rough measure of the cost of moving bulk materials by sea. Obviously the price of oil has a significant impact on this index, but since the cost to enter (and exit) this market is huge and long-term (many millions of dollars and a few years to build a bulk carrier), supply is inelastic and small changes in demand have clear impacts on pricing. And...shipping companies often purchase fuel futures to hedge their costs, so rapid changes in oil prices will not correspond to rapid changes in their fuel costs.

And here is the opposite view, thanks to commenter "Sauropod."
Why You Shouldn't Worry About The Baltic Dry Index Hitting A 29-Year Low

Posted by Open Blogger at 12:15 PM Comments

Gun Thread - What Fresh Hell? Edition [Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

Gun of the Week 1

BHAKR39 Test image II.jpg

Gun of the Week 2


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Posted by Open Blogger at 10:43 AM Comments

Sunday Morning Book Thread 03-01-2015: Politics As Usual [OregonMuse]

—Open Blogger

the barrel.jpg
Never, Ever Forget Your Closing Tag

Good morning to all of you morons and moronettes and all the ships at sea. Welcome to AoSHQ's stately, prestigious, and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread. The only AoSHQ thread that is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Or kilts. Kilts are OK, too. But not tutus. Unless you're a girl.

Book Quote

You haven't really read a book until you've read it at least twice.

11B40's father (from last week's book thread)

This quote reminds me that my brother once told me he likes to reads book backwards. So, if a novel has, say, 25 chapters, he'll flip to the back, read chapter 25, and then, Memento-like, he'll march backwards, chapter 24, 23, 22, etc., down to 1. He says he gets more out of a book this way. Maybee so, but I say that if the author wants to hit the reader with A Big Reveal, that would kind of spoils it, wouldn't it?

You Want: A Choice; You'll Get: An Echo

I have this horrible feeling that the 2016 presidential election is going to be a contest between the Clinton dynasty and the Bush dynasty.

Veteran conservative author, speaker, and activist Phyllis Schlafly (whose remarkable accomplishments I've lauded in a book thread of a couple of years ago, and by the way, I think you all should click on that link if for no other reason than because the accompanying pic is, like, probably the best book thread photo, ever) made her bones back in 1964 with her book promotion of the presidential campaign of Barry Goldwater, A Choice Not an Echo: The Inside Story of How American Presidents Are Chosen wherein she argues that the GOP was more or less controlled by big money Eastern Establishment types and it didn't matter whom the people wanted, it was who they wanted that ultimately determined who the Republican presidential candidate would be.

Mrs. Schlafly has recently released an updated version of A Choice, Not An Echo where she warns of the same thing happening again, 40 years later:

In her update, Mrs. Schlafly...argues that her party too often picks losers as candidates because of a stranglehold by the political consultant-big business-Wall Street crowd, which she argues makes a bundle from championing moderates over conservatives.

She warns that may be happening again in 2016 in the persona of Jeb Bush.

Yes, I dread having to sit down in 2016 and decide whether I'm going to have to hold my nose (again) and vote for some guy I don't really like but he's better than the other guy or join the 'let-it-burn' movement. And Schlafly makes a good point: beware of the man your enemies speak well of:

As evidence, she cites a New York Times article about how "Jeb Bush is so smart, so intellectual and so well-read. We were told that he is a 'top-drawer intellect' and a voracious reader who maintains 25 books on his Kindle — books such as George Gilder's 'Knowledge and Power.'"

George Bush was also a voracious reader, but I don't recall the NY Times ever touting that. So, it looks like that newspaper's preferred Republican candidate is Jeb. That alone means we probably should pick someone else.

(By the way, be careful of that Washington Times page I just linked to. it is so full of crap ads that it actually caused Internet Explorer 11 to crash. I recommend not going there unless you're using some sort of ad-blocking browser addon).

Schlafly is still going strong at age 90. Just last year she published Who Killed the American Family?, a book which

reveals the concerted assault on the American nuclear family by many forces - feminists, judges, lawmakers, psychologists, school districts, college professors, politicians offering incentives and seeking votes, and more - opposed to the traditional American nuclear family, each with its own [reason] for wanting to abolish it. The wreckage of the American family leaves us with the inability to have limited government because government steps in to perform tasks formerly done by the nuclear family.

This is why I think the fi-cons' ambivalence (or, in some cases, outright hostility) toward the so-cons is misplaced. The fi-cons cannot realize their agenda without the so-cons realizing theirs. The one is built upon the foundation of the other. Without strong, traditional families, the fi-cons are left shouting at the wind. Small government, you say? Where is the money going to come from to support all of these alternative (read: unstable) living arrangements (single moms, absent fathers, dysfunctional children, etc.)?

And this is exactly why the progressive left wants the family destroyed.

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Posted by Open Blogger at 09:00 AM Comments

Early Morning Thread 3/1/15: Just One Meal - San Antonio [krakatoa]

—Open Blogger

Happy Sunday, dear morons. I'll be traveling Monday instead of today, and off to wonderful warm (relatively speaking) San Antonio.

I've eaten at several nice places on & around the Riverwalk.

What's your favorite?

Posted by Open Blogger at 07:00 AM Comments

Overnight Open Thread (28 Feb 2015)


Why conservatives will miss Mr. Spock.

Spock was a very rational, intelligent character who often came to opposite conclusions to people around him (if you live in a liberal place or went to a liberal college, you can personally relate to this), but who used logic and common sense to figure things out. If you were to tell Spock there was global warming, he'd whip out his tricorder, take his own readings, and tell you you were wrong. If you described a society to Spock that invited strangers in and gave them unlimited welfare, Spock would clearly call such a society "illogical".

Top photo from Spock and the black cat.

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Posted by CDR M at 10:19 PM Comments

See You In Dabiq [OregonMuse]

—Open Blogger

Jobs for ISIS cartoon.jpg

So, last Friday night, after eating way too much bacon and way too many chocolate chip cookies, and washing it all down with more Valu-Rite than is good for me, I passed out in a drunken stupor fell asleep in front of my computer while I was reading Graeme Wood's excellent article on what ISIS really wants that has been referenced in a number of earlier threads here. Particularly the part where he describes how the seemingly insigificant (to us) city of Dabiq in Syria in reality looms very large in the apocalyptic imaginations of the ISIS theoriticians and I remember thinking how odd this is, and then as I teetered back and forth in a dream-like state between consciousness and unconsciousness, I heard that the 2016 elections were over and Scott Walker had won a great victory.

And at his first press conference, some reporter asked him about ISIS. "Bunch of pussies" President Walker replied, a look of supreme contempt on his face. "They may think they're all tough and shit when beheading teenaged boys or setting women on fire, but put any of those flaccid cowards up against a U.S. Marine and they'll lift up their skirts and go crying back to mama, guaranteed."

Another reporter asked Walker if such a statement is exactly what ISIS wants, and that it would play into their hands. The President's look of contempt turned to disgust. "Play? They won't be able to play anything after I'm through with them, because they'll be dead. I'm calling every one of those delicate petunias out - on Easter Sunday, units of the Unites States Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines will converge on the plains of Dabiq (that's in Syria for all of you journos who didn't bother to learn geography), where we'll be opening an extra large can of whoop-ass on their sorry jihadi butts. Although I hate to waste all that firepower. ISIS is such a pathetic bunch of nancy-boys, we could probably take them out with a couple 6-year-old tomboys with BB guns."

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Posted by Open Blogger at 09:03 PM Comments

Open Thread: In the Mind of the Beholder [Y-not]

—Open Blogger

OK, sorry to leave you guys with such a downer thread.

In honor of The Dress, here are some optical illusions to amuse you.

This one seems relevant:

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Posted by Open Blogger at 06:53 PM Comments

WTF, Missouri? [Y-not]

—Open Blogger

This didn't get much coverage in the conservo-sphere during a news-heavy week, but I think it's tragic. Missouri's auditor, Tom Schweich, who had recently entered the Republican primary for governor, killed himself. Motive unknown at this point:

In a voicemail reportedly left just minutes before died, Schweich is heard asking the editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial board Tony Messenger to send a reporter to his home.

"Tony, this is Tom Schweich calling," Schweich says in the recording posted on the paper's website. "You can have a reporter here at my house at 2:30."

Schweich also reportedly called and spoke with an Associated Press reporter just minutes earlier.

The Republican gubernatorial hopeful wanted to meet with the reporters to go public with allegations that head of his party had made anti-Semitic statements about him as part of a whisper campaign against him.

"This is only for you two and I hope you will not make it known that I am doing this," said Schweich. "To me, this is more of a religion story than a politics story, but it's your choice on who the reporter is."

Look, I know the responsibility for a suicide* rests on the person committing the act. That said, from what I've gleaned, the Republican primary had already turned very nasty. And it appears that Schweich's allegations about an anti-Jewish whisper campaign had merit:

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Posted by Open Blogger at 05:15 PM Comments

A Little of This...A Little of That [CBD]

—Open Blogger

Pigs sighted flying over Georgia: The Student Government Association (SGA) of the University of Georgia on Tuesday passed the first college resolution this year calling for the school to invest more in its relations with Israel.

The trend in our increasingly anti-freedom universities has been to vilify Israel and make organized attempts to Boycott, Divest and Sanction through student-controlled organizations.


Europe Without Jews? 70 years after the end of WWII and the Holocaust, Hitler might finally get want he wanted


I have no real interest in Kid Rock, other than his interest in brewing beer in his home state of Michigan. But now? I might have to buy some of his music. Kid Rock goes off on Beyonce: 'How can you be that big without a hit?'


The 1911 design is also known for feed-way stoppages, a malfunction caused when a round gets stuck feeding into the chamber, experts said. Horizontal and vertical stovepipes -- types of malfunctions that occur when an empty shell casing gets caught in the ejection port -- are also a problem with the 1911 design.

I noticed this yesterday and was surprised at the descriptions of the 1911. I have one, and have put thousands of rounds through it with a grand total of two stovepipe jams, one of which I blame on underpowered reloads. Marines Allow Operators to Choose Glocks over MARSOC .45s

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Posted by Open Blogger at 03:20 PM Comments

Saturday Gardening Thread: This Winter Is For The Birds [Y-not, KT, & Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

Good afternoon, gardening morons and moronettes!


Today's thread is brought to you by Josh Groban's February Song:

Without further ado, let's see what KT has in store for us this week:

Chilling Out

My, it has been cold and stormy in parts of the East. Makes me think about retreating indoors for some low-stress activities - just out of sympathy.

After some unseasonably warm weather here, it turned seasonably cool and foggy late last week, then rained. We have had a little frost, too, so I am glad I had my tomato seedlings indoors at night. Some of the potato-leaved plants got a little lacerated in the rain. The leaves were probably a little tender from being indoors part time. Incidentally, I think potato-leaved tomato plants look something like bean seedlings at first. Front and center, below:

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Posted by Open Blogger at 01:15 PM Comments

So? And What Does THAT Have To Do With Anything? - [Niedermeyer's Dead Horse]

—Open Blogger

Remember Ace's caution about not destroying careers over one's personal opinions? Well, in this case, he used Olbermann as an example thus I'm not sure many agreed, but his point stands: We cannot micromanage the lives of those around us.

When outside the context of work, and when not specifically conflicting with the terms of a contract or causing direct harm to the organization by which one is employed, one's personal statements should not be used as a hammer to destroy his or her career.

Now, of course, as in most things in life, there are exceptions:

You believe in animal sacrifice and apply for a job at a pet store? Nuh uh.

You have swastikas tattooed on your arms and now want to serve kosher foods? Nope.

You've actively perpetrated a lie which resulted in great loss to property, and frightened an entire community, but want to be trusted with national news? Apply to MSNBC!

See, I told you there were exceptions.

I don't need to rehash Ace's more articulate post, but I do want to provide an example of just what it is he has been talking about.

A few days ago I was waiting for my takeout pizza and killed the time by doing something I rarely do: I picked up the local indy rag and was immediately drawn to the cover story.

Meet Jacksonville's Newest Port Consultant: Dr. Dr. Herbert Barber Jr. (that's not a typo) thinks the country's going to hell, really dislikes the "ugly" poor, and believes Obama is "more anti-American than any ten thousand terrorists." Now he'll help decide the fate of one of the most important (and expensive) infrastructure projects in Northeast Florida.

I snorted upon reading it, and that's just the cover. Literally, it was sort of a choking and snorting sound all at once. And I said to myself, "So? What the hell does that have to do with anything?"

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Posted by Open Blogger at 11:55 AM Comments

Fundamental Concepts - Molon Labe [Weirddave]

—Open Blogger

In 480BC, Xerxes of Persia demanded that the Greeks under King Leonidas of Sparta surrender their weapons. King Leonidas responded with a laconic "Molon labe", which translates as "Come and take them" and a legend was born. Even though the Greeks lost the Battle of Thermopylae that followed, King Leonidas' stirring phrase has echoed with defiance down through history. The phrase has a rich history in America, too. From Fort Morris, Georgia, to Gonzales, Texas to Second Amendment defenders today, "Come and Take It" resonates in American hearts.


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Posted by Open Blogger at 10:32 AM Comments

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"Article V of the United States Constitution allows us to call a Convention of States to restrict the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, effectively returning the citizens' rightful power over the ruling elite." Tom Coburn is part of this. @COSProject [rdbrewer]

Why this liberal woman who voted for Obama twice no longer supports Obamacare
"'If I knew then, what I know now, I would have foregone insurance and taken the tax penalty. In fact, I’d rather be dead and broke than have to participate in Covered California’s health care exchange.'" [rdbrewer]

Vince Vaughn and Co-stars Pose for Idiotic Stock Photos You Can Have for Free
Via @MKHammer. [rdbrewer]

Funny GIECO ad
Via @DebbyWitt and @ComradeArthur. [rdbrewer]

Here Are the 75 House Republicans Who Conceded the Immigration Fight [rdbrewer]

David Stubbs and D.C. McAllister: Six Elements That Make For A Quality Survival Horror Game
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List of Democrats who skipped Netanyahu's speech
Not including the White House. [rdbrewer]

NASA probe to study dwarf planet Ceres bright spots
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Neil Munro: Obama Unveils National ObamaLaw Plan
"Obama also instructed his media allies to help federalize policing, and to sideline critics of centralized policing rules. 'I expect our friends in the media to really focus on what’s in this report and pay attention to it.'" He's talking to you, Politico. President NPD wants to turn this country into a hellhole so that people will always remember the name Obama. So maybe some balanced reporting on that one. [rdbrewer]

Patrick Howley: EXPOSED: Department of Justice Shut Down Search For Lois Lerner’s Emails
"'The Department of Justice lawyers objected to that and said I shouldn’t even be allowed to mention these off-site servers without sworn affidavits,' Mitchell told TheDC." Lawyers make arguments in good faith "upon information and belief" all the time. Apparently the judge isn't the sharpest tool in the shed. [rdbrewer]

Michelle Malkin compiles history of administration’s ‘unorthodox’ email methods
"[I]t turns out fake emails and bogus names are pretty standard operating procedure." It's almost as if they knew the partisan hack in the AG's office wouldn't do anything. [rdbrewer]
Cadillac: The Daring
Steve Wozniak. [rdbrewer]

Randy Barnett: Lobbying the Chief Justice (again)
"[T]he left has been encouraged to think that its pressure worked, and might work again in King v. Burwell. But this time, they aren’t waiting until after oral argument to launch their political lobbying campaign." They're trying to gin-up a meme that the legitimacy of the court is at stake. See the last paragraph here, for example. Coincidence? [rdbrewer]

Sean Davis: The U.S. Constitution Actually Bans Hillary’s Foreign Government Payola
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BI: Scientists take the first ever photograph of light as both a wave and a particle
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Timothy Rubbelke: The Paradox of Government Vaccine Mandates
@tsrblke on Twitter. [rdbrewer]

‘Sharknado 3′: Mark Cuban, Ann Coulter to Play President, Vice President
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Jeffrey Goldberg, The Atlantic: Danger Ahead for Obama on Iran
"Netanyahu's controversial speech is masking another issue: The president's responsibility to avoid making a bad nuclear deal." Obama doesn't give a shit about a bad deal. He just wants something people can point to and say "Obama did that." [rdbrewer]

Gallup: Big Jump in Netanyahu Approval in United States
"Netanyahu’s approval is now at 45 percent, a full ten points higher than two years ago. His disapproval stayed relatively the same, now at 24 percent. These are the best numbers Netanyahu has seen this millennium, clearly indicating whatever flak he is taking from the left is not damaging his brand with Americans." [rdbrewer]

David Corbin and Matt Parks: The Federalist and The Promise of American Life
"Progressivism, in sum, requires a capacity for self-criticism that its epistemic pride and solipsistic self-flattery make all but impossible. President Obama’s comical self-confidence is but the logical outcome of his ideology." Heheh. [rdbrewer]

Peggy Noonan's Blog: Walker, Reagan and Patco
"The Soviets watched like everybody else. They observed how the new president handled a national-security challenge. They saw that his rhetorical toughness would be echoed in tough actions. They hadn’t known that until this point. They knew it now. ¶ This is why Reagan’s secretary of state George Shultz said that the Patco decision was the most important foreign-policy decision Reagan ever made." [rdbrewer]

Kevin Williamson: Live Long and Prosper
"Twenty years later, I’d discover that this was the juvenile (a word that in this context is not pejorative) version of Stoicism, which makes substantially the same promises as Spock’s kolinahr discipline (possibly the nerdiest clause I have ever written), offering the same state of resolute tranquility...." [rdbrewer]

Glenn Reynolds, USA Today: Quartering spyware troops in the digital age
"In this post-drug war era of no-knock raids, SWAT teams, and governmental spying, it's sad to think that we are, in fact, less secure in our homes than 'the poorest man' in his own cottage was under the English kings we once revolted against. And if that's the case, maybe the Third Amendment isn't working as well as we think." [rdbrewer]

Roger L. Simon: Will Obama’s Iran Deal Be the Worst Deal Ever Made?
"I hate to sound like Mr. Armageddon, but what we are dealing with here is not a Chamberlain-style appeasement. It is something far more dangerous. Even that administration favorite Jeffrey Goldberg seems alarmed in a new article in The Atlantic ('Danger Ahead for Obama on Iran')...." Via @EdDriscoll. [rdbrewer]

Hopes for peaceful Russian transition fade with Nemtsov: Kasparov
"'Boris hoped, in vain as we understand, to see some form of peaceful transition into normal, civilized democratic government,' Kasparov told Reuters, describing Nemtsov as one of Russia's leading advocates for non-violent political expression. ¶ 'I see no chance for Russia now to move from Putin's brutal dictatorship into something that will be even (as) mild as we had 10 years ago,' he said, predicting it could take a violent mass uprising if change was to come." Related: Kasparov's WSJ editorial. [rdbrewer]
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Video: Kitten vs. ducklings
Via Jane D'oh. [rdbrewer]

Scott Walker Accurately Remembers History, And You Won’t Believe What Happens Next!
"Rucker was the guy who whined, 'What about your gaaaaaaaffffffes!!!!!!' to Mitt Romney in 2012...." Oh, that guy. More here. [rdbrewer]

A nice tribute to Leonard Nimoy [rdbrewer]

SooperMexican: Right-Wing Blogger DESTROYS Jezebel and Daily Beast’s Attempt to SMEAR Scott Walker With FALSE Rape Story!
"This time it was my homie @DrawAndStrike who single-handedly destroyed an attempted smear on Scott Walker." [rdbrewer]
Genetic Data Tools Reveal How Pop Music Evolved In The US …and show that The Beatles didn’t start the 1964 American music revolution after all. [dri]

Ben Domenech: The Cartman Presidency: There Is No Check On President Obama
"Barack Obama is basically operating now without any congressional checks and balances whatsoever." I'd remind Congress it's a long time until elections. Hammer down. Via @TheH2. [rdbrewer]

Newsweek: Why the Web Won't Be Nirvana
From 1995. "Do our computer pundits lack all common sense? The truth is no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works.... And you can't tote that laptop to the beach. Yet Nicholas Negroponte, director of the MIT Media Lab, predicts that we'll soon buy books and newspapers straight over the Intenet. Uh, sure." Hah. [rdbrewer]

Networks Spend Nearly Six Minutes on Runaway Llamas, But Nothing on Clinton Ethics Story
The Clinton Foundation took donations from foreign governments while Clinton was Secretary of State. ABC, NBC, and Scott Pelley at CBS failed to cover it. Why? Because they're unprofessional; they're unethical, and they're in the tank for Hillary. [rdbrewer]

Greg Jones: Pipeline Politics: The Real Reason Behind Obama’s Keystone Veto
"Why on Earth would Obama veto what is essentially a fraction of existing pipeline that would not only give Americans cheaper oil, but create more than 40,000 jobs in the process? Politics. Think about it: the proposed XL extension runs through solid red states.... The veto of Keystone XL was political, nothing more, nothing less. It was a childish attempt at revenge; the equivalent of taking one’s ball and going home." President Teenager. [rdbrewer]

Jonah Goldberg: Is Liberalism Exhausted?
"[T]he cultural Left has disengaged from mainstream political arguments, preferring instead the comforts of identity-politics argy-bargy. You judge political movements not by their manifestos but by where they put their passion. And on the left these days, the only things that arouse passion are arguments about race and gender." [rdbrewer]
NY Times: Boris Nemtsov, Critic of Putin, Is Shot Dead in Moscow
"Mr. Nemtsov, 55, was one of the principal organizers of an opposition march scheduled for Sunday in Moscow."[rdbrewer]

NY Times: A White and Gold (No, Blue and Black!) Dress Melts the Internet
"The one thing scientists could agree on was that this is a very unusual illusion. People who see the dress one way do not eventually begin to see it the other way, as is common with many optical illusions." (I see white and gold.) Related: See the Wired link below. More from Yahoo News. [rdbrewer]

The National Academy of Sciences chooses the winner of its most prestigious award
Guess. No, really. [rdbrewer]

Wired: The Science of Why No One Agrees on the Color of This Dress
Okay, so it really is blue and black? Related: @CuffyMeh. [rdbrewer]
Columbo Roasts Frank Sinatra
In what may be a bit of Columbo trivia, he reveals his wife's name, which I don't think he ever mentioned on the show

Leonard Nimoy Dies at 83
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