Saturday, October 31, 2009


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Hopes of a diplomatic breakthrough over Iran’s nuclear programme were dwindling tonight after Tehran demanded changes to a uranium exchange deal that European diplomats described as “unacceptable”.

If the deal collapses, as seemed likely, the apparent progress made over Tehran’s nuclear programme in recent weeks would evaporate, the diplomats said. It would deliver another critical blow to the Obama administration’s policy of engagement, and put international sanctions and Israeli military action back on the table. …

“They want to keep all the gains, and give nothing away themselves,” another diplomat said.

Gee, you would have thought they would have guessed. Meanwhile, in other news, Daniel Ortega is re-establishing himself as the dictator of Nicaragua.  The wolves are howling everywhere, even in the backyard. reports:

Daniel Ortega muscled Nicaragua’s courts to permit his permanent re-election, effectively making him dictator.

A Real Hockey Stick

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Fannie Mae Seriously Delinquent Rate

Fannie Mae reported today that the rate of serious delinquencies – at least 90 days behind – for conventional loans in its single-family guarantee business increased to 4.45% in August, up from 4.17% in July – and up from 1.57% in August 2008.

“Includes seriously delinquent conventional single-family loans as a percent of the total number of conventional single-family loans. These rates are based on conventional single-family mortgage loans and exclude reverse mortgages and non-Fannie Mae mortgage securities held in our portfolio.”

Just more evidence of the growing delinquency problem, although these stats do include Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) loans in trial modifications.

Now that’s a hockey stick to be worried about.

It hardly is a surprise then that when we see that sort of graph of actual data in the American economy, we start to see graphs like this one depicting confidence in climate change as an important issue:


The Fool

The extreme delay in getting decisions out of Washington that were urgent many months ago, on how to proceed in Afghanistan, was made sickly comic on Monday when President Barack Obama told a military audience that he would not "rush the solemn decision of sending you into harm's way."
The Bush administration was, for all its misjudgments in other areas, good at making clear, clean, practical decisions with troops in harm's way. Bush himself commanded overwhelming support in the military vote for his re-election in 2004. John McCain, who could also be taken as having some idea about military issues, largely kept that vote. If Obama thinks he can now win the trust of soldiers, by blathering to them about the solemnity of his own august personal angst, he is as much of a fool as he looks to them already.
It is surely evident by now, this is a president who cannot make decisions. It grieves me that the soldiers must pay for that.

hOpeless sh*t

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Exactly. And the reason things are so hopeless is that a 20% or more or of the electorate, maybe 60 million people, must of them putatively educated, are almost blindly convinced in this nonsense. And the only way they’re going to learn different is when they run their faces headlong into a granite wall.

I knew a guy once, and I think I told the story before, who told me about his cellmate in Marcos-era political prison. His cellmate started laughing manically one night in the small hours of the morning. When he settled down, he asked him what was so funny.

“Mao … Mao Tse Tung”

“What about him?”

“When we were taken on a tour of China (in 1969), they brought us to his boyhood home.”


“And I rushed straight for the pond where Mao had bathed as a boy and plunged my face into the scummy water, to the amazement of all our Chinese escorts because I said, hey, this is where He bathed. This is where He dipped His feet.”

“Why were you laughing?”

“How could I have believed that shit?”


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Excuse Me While I Hurl

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A British nuclear expert who fell from the 17th floor of a United Nations building did not commit suicide and may have been hurled to his death, says a doctor who carried out a second post-mortem examination.

Timothy Hampton, 47, a scientist involved in monitoring nuclear activity, was found dead last week at the bottom of a stairwell in Vienna.

But she said one possible theory was that Mr Hampton was carried to the 17th floor from his workplace on the sixth floor and thrown to his death.

Professor Yen used new forensic techniques to detect internal bruising caused by strangulation which would not be visible to the eye.

She said: ‘In my opinion, it does not look like suicide. My example is that somebody took him up to the top floor and took him down.

Under a year ago, an American died at the IAEA in strikingly similar circumstances, his body being found at the bottom of a stairwell.

Smart Power!

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Clean tech has seen a boost as the U.S. pours government funding into renewable energy, and China looks set to reap much of the benefits. Latest example: a Chinese wind-turbine company has just become the exclusive supplier for one of the largest wind-farm developments in the U.S.

The Shenyang Power Group has signed on to supply 240 of its massive 2.5-megawatt wind turbines to a 36,000-acre development in West Texas. The Wall Street Journal reports that the wind farm is also slated to receive $1.5 billion in financing from the Export-Import Bank of China.

This comes as the U.S. has increasingly out-sourced much of its wind turbine development. Less than a quarter of wind turbine components installed in the U.S. came from domestic production, and Europe currently holds the lion's share of turbine manufacturing. A Norwegian firm launched the world's first full-scale floating wind turbine this September.

We Tax Everything That Moves And Doesn't Move

LAHORE: The leadership of Al Qaeda is in Pakistan, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday.

“I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to,” she added.

“Maybe that’s the case; maybe they’re not gettable. I don’t know... As far as we know, they are in Pakistan,” Clinton told senior Pakistani newspaper editors in Lahore, AFP reported. “The percentage of taxes on GDP (in Pakistan) is among the lowest in the world... We (the United States) tax everything that moves and doesn’t move, and that’s not what we see in Pakistan,” she said.
Among "friends" the truth comes out.


Many years ago, at a certain academic institution, there was an experimental program that the faculty had to vote on as to whether or not it should be made permanent.

I rose at the faculty meeting to say that I knew practically nothing about whether the program was good or bad, and that the information that had been supplied to us was too vague for us to have any basis for voting, one way or the other.

The director of that program rose immediately and responded indignantly and sarcastically to what I had just said-- and the faculty gave him a standing ovation.

After the faculty meeting was over, I told a colleague that I was stunned and baffled by the faculty's fierce response to my simply saying that we needed more information before voting.

"Tom, you don't understand," he said. "Those people need to believe in that man. They have invested so much hope and trust in him that they cannot let you stir up any doubts."


He descended from the railcar and ordered that the track behind the train be pulled up and laid in front of the train. He pounded his shoe on Lenin’s platform for emphasis.

Later the train began to roll again. This time it went further than before. But then it stopped again.

Brezhnev said he’s fix things. He scrambled down the ladder, gathered the new foremen around him, and said, “Comrades, divide your workers into two groups. Line one half along one side of the train, and the other along the opposite. Rock the train from side-to-side so that it feels like we’re moving.”

And they did. Inside the railcar Lenin, Stalin and Kruschev marveled at how Brezhnev had been able to get so much track laid in so little time, and at all the distance they were moving across the wilderness.

Outside, Joe Bidenchev, a new foreman, encouraged the workers saying, “Look, Comrades, at how many foremens’ jobs we’ve saved.”

Okay, the last part wasn’t part of the original telling.

Reminds me of the general summarization joke of life in the USSR: We pretend to work and they pretend to pay us.

We are barreling down the track to re-enact it here unfortunately.

The lOner?

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Frustrated by Iran's continued defiance of demands to come clean on its nuclear program, the Obama administration is leaning toward imposing new sanctions, even if it must act alone.

Administration officials acknowledged growing concern that there may not be international consensus to expand the existing U.N. sanctions, despite Tehran's apparent rejection of a confidence-building measure proposed by the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog in hopes of making progress on the nuclear issue.

To that end, the administration is quietly supporting legislation in Congress that would give President Barack Obama a broad new array of authority to target Iran's energy sector by penalizing foreign firms that sell and ship refined petroleum products to Iran. The regime is heavily dependent on gasoline, kerosene and propane imports.

If he actually does this -- and in an effective manner rather than finding a way to blame Bush for any aspect he messes up -- then he'll get full credit from me and even a bump or two.

RTWT. There's even talk of trying to stop the Mullahs from acquiring spy technology they are using against the Green movement.

I think hell will freeze over before this happens but I'm trying to keep an open mind...

Not Detroit

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Friday, October 30, 2009

On Why Gandhi Masks Are Appropriate For Halloween

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In his 1949 “Reflections on Gandhi,” George Orwell, regarding the late war, wrote that “one question every pacifist had a clear obligation to answer was: ‘What about the Jews? Are you prepared to see them exterminated? If not, how do you propose to save them
without resorting to war?’” Orwell recorded Gandhi’s answer, which was: German Jews should commit collective suicide.

The Tinfoil Curtains Opocalypse

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There were so many ways to get this right, and one clear to way to completely blow it. The Obama administration chose to blow it, and to blow it big, by embracing an imbalanced dictator-wannabe whose efforts are supported by the worst offenders of representative democracy and individual freedom in the region:
Zelaya prodly shows off his tinfoil curtains to US Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Shannon

The interim leader of Honduras says he is ready to sign a pact to end its crisis which could include the return of ousted President Manuel Zelaya.

Roberto Micheletti said the agreement would create a power-sharing government and require both sides to recognise the result of November’s presidential poll.

Mr Zelaya said the deal, which requires the approval of the Supreme Court and Congress, would be signed on Friday.

The opponents had earlier been told by US Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Shannon that they had to reach an accord in order to ensure international support for the election on 29 November.

O, What A System!

"It would not only give patients enforceable health care entitlements but it would also prevent managers and clinicians from controlling waiting times as a way of limiting demand and saving money," she said. "In the past requirements to make financial savings often resulted in hospitals stopping routine surgery for a couple of months before the end of the financial year."

What a system! It beggars belief that Barack Obama and Democratic leaders in Congress want to reproduce the fiasco of socialized medicine here in the U.S.

How Low Can The Blue Line Below Go?

If anyone mentions the just-released 3.5% U.S. third quarter GDP growth, just throw this chart in their face. Cash for Clunkers clearly distorted the U.S. economic figures in an unsustainable fashion.

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), motor vehicle output spiked a seasonally-adjusted 157.6% quarter on quarter. This is completely unprecedented. Vehicle output is clearly going off a cliff next quarter. The question will be how low can the blue line below go.

Now imagine if next quarter the blue line below goes down into negative territory as it did just two quarters ago. Next quarter, not only are we unlikely to get Q3's boost, but motor vehicle output data could subtract from GDP as well. So watch out for the cliff...


Thursday, October 29, 2009

hOpenchange (Part 83,903)

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CHANGE: Top Obama fundraisers get posts. “More than 40% of President Obama’s top-level fundraisers have secured posts in his administration, from key executive branch jobs to diplomatic postings in countries such as France, Spain and the Bahamas, a USA TODAY analysis finds.”


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Their Lips Are Moving

Kudos to Ray for finding this one.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I Don't Care. Honest.

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Clunked @ $24K

American taxpayers paid a lot of cash for those clunkers: $24,000 for each new car sold, according to a study released Wednesday.

That’s a lot of money, especially when the so-called “cash for clunker” stimulus program offered only a maximum $4,500 in cash for each person who traded in an old gas-guzzler and bought a new car.

The government could have done almost as well by just giving away cars for free, instead of creating an elaborate incentive program, according to an analysis by the automotive information firm in Santa Monica, Calif.

Bye Bye Bill Nye

Here you can watch Richard Lindzen make mince meat of Dr. Bill Nye the science guy:

My friend Ray found this one. I'm sure Larry will be slapped down well and good by his masters for allowing this on the air.


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A company named Boston Dynamics has developed a robot that mimics the way a human being walks – well, at least the way a slightly tipsy human being walks:


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Even more risible, though, is the claim that the administration “is going to speak truth to power.” Hello, Valerie? Your boss is the president of the United States! No one is more powerful. As we suggested Friday, it really seems as if Obama and his men do not understand what it means to be president. Because their power is constrained–thank you, Founding Fathers!–they labor under the delusion that they are powerless.

Yet while this is all hilarious, it is also scary when you think it through. Great power entails great responsibility. There is little to suggest that Obama and his aides appreciate their responsibility, and much, including their incessant complaining that the previous president did a lousy job, to suggest an attitude of total irresponsibility.

The job of those in power is not to “speak truth to power,” though it would be nice if they spoke the truth once in a while.


An Endorsement


Unless the candidate is me, I have made it a practice to abstain from issuing formal endorsements for political races. In the case of Douglas Hoffman, the Conservative Party candidate for the US Congress in New York's 23rd district, I will make a happy exception.

Canuck reader Maryann Crabtree forwards this photo of the candidate posing proudly in front of his Two Lane Blacktop - worthy 1955 Chevy 210 2-door sedan. Note missing rear bumper. Note radiused rear wheel well.

thus, while his Congressional cohort was tripping on brown acid in the mud at Max Yasgur's farm, Mr. Hoffman was gearslamming down the quarter mile at Fulton Speedway.

Yessirree bob, this photo tells me everything I need to know about Mr. Hoffman, and I enthusiastically give him my full support.

This, I have learned, is now the basis of attack ads from his Democrat and Republican foes in the race.

Which tells me everything I need to know about them.

He's Back

At a public event recently, California assemblyman Tom Ammiano heckled Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, yelling that Arnold should "kiss my gay ass." The Assembly has just passed an Ammiano-sponsored bill relating to financing of the Port of San Francisco. Schwarzenegger vetoed the bill with this message; click to enlarge:


The Governor's office says it's just a "weird coincidence" that the letters that begin each line, read downward from the top, spell...well, you can figure it out. My own judgment, based on the letter's rather strained locution, is that the message was intentional, although likely not by Arnold himself.

Your CorruptOcratic Jack*ss In Chief At "Work"

A wonderful image of the first pimp-in-chief entertaining guests and peddling WH access for cash, wouldn't you say? Now that I think about it, pimp isn't the correct word. How about drug dealer for that special feeling you get, feeling important because you copped a bag from the Oval Office on your last trip downtown? Yes, I think that works much better. I so much want to be fair.

During his first nine months in office, President Obama has quietly rewarded scores of top Democratic donors with VIP access to the White House, private briefings with administration advisers and invitations to important speeches and town-hall meetings.

High-dollar fundraisers have been promised access to senior White House officials in exchange for pledges to donate $30,400 personally or to bundle $300,000 in contributions ahead of the 2010 midterm elections, according to internal Democratic National Committee documents obtained by The Washington Times.

Wh movie

Navigating to bingO

In 1994, while Barack Obama's memoir Dreams From My Father was being polished off, Bill Ayers co-authored an essay whose title befits a former merchant seaman: "Navigating a restless sea: The continuing struggle to achieve a decent education for African American youngsters in Chicago."

In "Navigating," Ayers and his nominal co-author, former New Communist Movement leader Michael Klonsky, offer a detailed analysis of the Chicago school system and a discussion of potential reforms. Curiously, so too does Obama in Dreams.
Unlike Obama, Bill Ayers has a genuine, career-long interest in education. In the mid-1990s he was sufficiently serious about reform to invest considerable time and energy in his protégé. As shall be seen, the likely reason Ayers did so was because Obama had the ability to address problems that he and Klonsky could not.
RTWT. Cashill tacks toward the terrible truth.

The Hope Of Nothing

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There may be hope for liberal Boston. The current results of a Howie Carr poll at WRKO:


Carr's still got some work to do, with a whopping 6% willing to give up anything at all in the name of a farce.

Progressive Weeds

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Where To Even Begin?

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Japanese naval forces successfully shot down a medium-range missile off Hawaii in a test of Tokyo's missile defense weaponry, the US military said on Wednesday.

A Japanese destroyer detected, tracked and knocked out the missile in mid-flight with an SM-3 interceptor rocket, the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) said in a statement.

The missile was launched on Tuesday at 6:00 pm Hawaii time (0400 GMT) at a missile range site off Kauai in Hawaii and at 6:04, an SM-3 interceptor was fired in response, the MDA said.

"Approximately three minutes later, the SM-3 successfully intercepted the target approximately 100 miles (160 kilometers) above the Pacific Ocean," it said.

Japan has sought to bolster its missile defenses in the face of the threat posed by North Korea's missile and nuclear programs.

US President Barack Obama's administration has announced plans to build a missile defense shield in Europe using the SM-3 interceptors and the Aegis radar system.

So O Duce is now trying to take credit for being brilliant by replacing the missile defense system that Bush had promised Poland ... with another defense system that wouldn't even exist if O Duce had his way that was developed by ... Bush.

The average IQ of Americans that swallow this swill is too low to measure.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Not One

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There is no question that the momentum of history has swung to the left, ever since the days of Wilson and Roosevelt. The New Deal promise of modest taxation, to pay crucial benefits to the most desperate among the poor, became first a lie, then a joke. No one on the Left even bothers pretending their agenda consists of selfless dedication to the poor any longer. It’s all about desperate grabs for gigantic amounts of power over an increasingly impoverished and dominated middle class.

The madness of launching new trillion-dollar programs on top of a madly inflating deficit has become accepted as reasonable discourse.

A truly transformational moment is upon us. The old game is over. The mad spending spree of 2009 has left America mortgaged to the hilt. The money is all gone.
Every available dollar has been taxed and spent, and not one single problem the Left demanded the sacrifice of our wealth and freedom to address has been resolved. Not one of their programs has worked
But the dirty little secret is that none of their programs were meant to make things better for you. Just for them.

My Main Mop Man

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Nuclear Incoherence

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Islamabad, 27 October (AKI) - By Syed Saleem Shahzad - A political crisis in Pakistan is looming as Taliban-led militants continue to step up their campaign of violence. Two suspected Taliban gunmen on a motorbike on Tuesday tried to kill an army brigadier in the capital, Islamabad when they opened fire on his vehicle before fleeing the scene.

The attack came a day after a meeting between Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday in Islamabad which failed to resolve the rift between their two parties.

The meeting between Zardari, who is co-chairman of the ruling Pakistan People's Party, and Sharif, who heads the largest opposition party, Pakistani-Muslim-League-N party, took place in Islamabad.
Scrapping the NRO is one of the main issues between Zardari and Sharif.
It would also mean abolishing the 17 Amendment of the constitution, which makes the parliament subordinate to the parliament.

Getting Sickle Acorn Yet?

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In the aftermath of the corruption and depravity that were revealed by the O'Keefe/Giles videos, ACORN clearly needed to repackage itself to continue receiving massive quantities of our money from the government. I knew any changes would be cosmetic, but I thought Chairman Obamao's old comrades would at least find a new name. As it turns out, they only modified their logo: