Shots Across the Bow

A Reality Based Blog

Monday, June 29, 2009

Regarding Ricci

IF a testing procedure is developed that is strictly controlled for any possible racial bias, and
IF it's reviewed by a multi-racial panel that includes each minority, and
IF that test is administered in a race neutral setting and graded without possibility of bias,


IF the test results demonstrate a racial component to performance


Isn't it possible that performance of the ability in question has a racial component?

Now hold off on the knee jerk name calling for a moment, and think about it. We already acknowledge that there are gender based differences in performance. Gender and race are both genetically determined, so it should follow that there might be racially based differences in performance. Different races may have different abilities. If you think about it a little bit deeper, from an evolutionary standpoint, each race would almost have to have different strengths and weaknesses, otherwise there wouldn't be different races.

It's not that hard of a concept; we only make it hard because we've been brainwashed into a PC worldview that holds that "equal" means "the same."

That's why remarking that African Americans excel in sports is a racist statement. Instead of noting the obvious when referring to the overwhelming percentage of African Americans in football and basketball, we strive to come up with complicated socio-economic theories to explain the disparity because we don't want to offend anyone.

Here's the bottom line. People of all shapes, sizes, and colors come with a wide range of talents, skills, capabilities, and shortcomings. That's why we treat each person as an individual. At the same time, every time you create a group of people, no matter what selection criteria you use, race, age, sex, etc., that group will exhibit traits linked to the selection criteria. That's just the way it is. Wishing won't change it, and ignoring it won't make it go away.

Today, the Supreme Court ruled that in order to claim racial bias in a testing process, it isn't enough to just look at the results. In order to claim bias, you have to find it in the structure of the testing process. This is a good decision because it recognizes reality while also giving cities and companies some protection from racial bias lawsuits. At the same time, it forces employers to look even harder at selection criteria to make absolutely certain that no racial bias exists, which is also a good thing. What this decision doesn't do is say that minorities aren't capable of performing to the same level as whites. It simply states that if an employer sets up objective criteria that have been examined and approved before hand by all participants, then they shouldn't have to throw out the results of those criteria simply because the results don't match racial or gender quotas.

Posted by Rich
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Friday, June 26, 2009

219 Spineless Jellyfish

Jellyfish have no spinal column, a rudimentary central nervous system with no brain to speak of, and limited means of propulsion; they just drift where the currents take them, eating plankton and annoying the crap out of people. Not surprisingly, this description also applies to our Congress in Washington, who today voted for a bill that may very well slit the throat of American industry for decades to come, and they did so without ever reading the bill.

Ponder that thought for a moment and really let it sink in. The folks who are representing us, in theory anyway, just voted to pass an energy bill that none of them had the time to read. At 3AM this morning a 300 page amendment was tacked on by Henry Waxman, and not only did the Congressmen not have time to read it, but they weren't allowed enough time to debate it either.

You really have to wonder why the Democrats are in such a hurry to get this bill passed? What are they afraid of?

We may never find out because 219 spineless jellyfish in the House did their master's bidding and passed the cap and trade bill. I wonder how many of those 219 will still be in Washington 6 years from now? Because if the majority of them still have jobs in Washington,then the blame is no longer on them.

It's on those of you who voted for them, knowing what they were.

Posted by Rich
Politics • (0) CommentsPermalink

This Is All That Needs To Be Said

"Mr. President, I cannot in good conscience vote in support of a bill that I have not had time to read, particularly one that had a 300 page amendment tacked onto it last night after we left session. Additionally, the 3 hours of debate allowed by the House Speaker is not enough to explore the potential ramifications of a bill this large and complex. This process is too important to be rushed, and too dangerous if we get something wrong. My constituents deserve better government than this. Therefore I have no choice but to vote against this cap and trade package."

Just remember, every representative who votes for this bill does so without ever having read it.

Posted by Rich
Politics • (2) CommentsPermalink

Reality Check: Democrats Need Not Apply

Remember when President Obama said that there would be time for the public to read and comment on all legislation prior to it coming up for a vote? Remember when he promised a 5 day waiting period before signing a bill, to allow for people to comment?

That's OK, neither does he.

Last night, the Cap and Trade bill in the House got a 300 page amendment by Henry Waxman. Yep, 300 pages. That's on top of the already existing 1200 pages. I'm a fast reader and I couldn't digest 300 page a lawyer speak in a single night, and I am certain that no Congresscritter voting today could do so either. That means that once again, Congress will be voting on a bill that nobody has bothered to read!. Even worse, the House Democrats have moved to limit debate to 3 hours.

1500 pages in 3 hours.

Folks this is just like TARP 1, the economic stimulus package, and the Federal budget, we know how those are working out don't we?

Here's the bottom line folks. Obama himself said that energy prices will skyrocket when cap and trade passes. The last time energy prices skyrocketed, the economy collapsed in a smoking heap. Guess what? The economy is still collapsing and we're about to take ratchet energy prices up again. Does this seem like a wise thing for us to do? Wait, there's more.

Our government has pumped trillions of dollars into the global economy without any corresponding increase in value. The end result will be high inflation as those trillions of dollars make their way into circulation. I'll give you an example.

Right here in Oak Ridge, the stimulus package has funded several new projects and in order to hire the manpower for these projects, employers are paying a premium price for skilled workers. That's good, right? In the short term, sure, because the new projects are funded with free stimulus money, they can afford to pay their skilled staff 50% more than the going rate. In Oak Ridge, a company I do some work for lost a significant portion of their trained employees because the stimulus funded employers offered them 50% raises.

This leaves companies that don't get stimulus money in a bind. If they want to keep their skilled employees, they have to raise their salaries to match, and then pass that expense on to the consumer. That's you and me, by the way. We're getting the exact same product at the exact same level of quality; we're just paying more for it. A lot more.

That's inflation folks. An increase in cost without a corresponding increase in value.

So, we couple the tremendous inflationary pressures of the stimulus package and the Obama budget with a sharp increase in energy costs, and guess what comes next? It won't be long before we are looking back on the days of Jimmy Carter's stagflation and thinking about how good we had it back then.

Is there anybody left in the House of Representatives with anything remotely resembling a conscience? Where's the loud voices shouting that this bill is too big, too important, and too dangerous to be rammed through Congress without the members having time to read it, digest it, and understand it? Where are the responsible adults in Washington?

They certainly can't be found on Capitol Hill today.

Posted by Rich
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Next Shotgun Bleg

I got some good advice on the last one, so here we go again. One of the best recommendations was to take a defensive shotgun course. I followed a couple of links, and found a school in Charlotte, NC, but they aren't offering another shotgun course for several months. So does anybody know of a good defensive shotgun course located within a 4-5 hour drive of Knoxville TN? The ideal course would be one tailored for the absolute beginner that stresses exercises that I can continue to practice after I get back home.

As for additions to the shotgun, I've decided to keep it fairly simple. Since I'm 6' 300lbs, and my wife is not, I'm going to get an adjustable stock, probably the Knox Spec Ops since it also reduces recoil, and has gotten good reviews everywhere I've read. I also want to add a flashlight, so recommendations on that are certainly welcome. Some of the ones I looked at online were more expensive than the gun itself. I'm looking for value, not cheap. Finally, I will add some sort of shell carrier.

I thought about adding ghost ring sights, but I think I'll wait and see if it turns out that I'll need them.

Thanks for all the good suggestions.

Posted by Rich
Shooting • (1) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

If You Want to Use the Bible to Make a Point, It Helps to Actually Read It.

Art Hughes, over at the Tennessee Democratic Party website, has posted a claim that Jesus was a socialist. I've read claims like this before, and they always make me laugh since it requires the Son of God to endorse an atheistic government.

Not too likely.

Because Jesus believed and taught the concept of the rich giving to the poor, was he a socialist?

There are multiple mistakes in this first opening statement. First, socialism has little to do with the rich giving to the poor. The classic definition of socialism is:

Socialism refers to any one of various economic theories of economic organization advocating state or cooperative ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods, and a society characterized by equal opportunities/means for all individuals with a more egalitarian method of compensation based on the full product of the laborer.

There's nothing about "giving" in there. Instead, socialism is all about the government taking ownership of the economy and dictating who gets paid how much. There is no giving, only taking.

Next, Jesus did not advocate that the rich give to the poor, but that everybody gives to God.

Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into a the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two b small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

Here is a widow who is giving all that she has to the Jewish Temple, certainly a rich organization at the time, right? Yet Jesus praises her devotion to God, praising a poor woman giving to a rich temple. To take Jesus's ministry and make it all about taking from the rich and giving to the poor to produce a more equal outcome is a tremendous distortion.

We should not have to have a tax system at all, like the Muslims (the same Christian God) who believe it is an obligation to take care of their poor and do so voluntarily.

Wow. Did you know that Muslims worship the same God as Christians? That would come as quite a shock to the Muslims, since they believe that all infidels, which includes all Christians, must convert and will be converted to Islam, either voluntarily, or by the sword.

Another interesting point is this bit about taxation. Apparently, Art believes that a tax collected by the church isn't really a tax, even when the church is the government. Also his use of the word voluntary is a bit misleading, given the consequences in Islam for failing to give

Mark 14;7…”you will always have the poor with you.”“When ever you want to you can always do them good.”

Let's provide some context:

3 And while he was at c Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he was reclining at table, a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flask and poured it over his head. 4 There were some who said to themselves indignantly, “Why was the ointment wasted like that? 5 For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii and given to the poor.” And they scolded her. 6 But Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me. 7 For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you want, you can do good for them. But you will not always have me. 8 She has done what she could; she has anointed my body beforehand for burial. 9 And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.”

Hmmm. Mary Magdelene has just anointed Jesus's head with an expensive oil, that cost almost a year's wages. Think about that for a minute. A denarius was equivalent to a day's labor and the jar of ointment cost more than 300 denarii. The apostles, particularly Judas, were outraged that she "wasted" a year's labor on a single man, instead of using the money they could have gotten through selling it to help the poor. Apparently, Art thinks Judas had the right idea.

Deut 15;4,5…”adherence to GODS’s laws would largely prevent poverty..”

Another bit of twisting. Again, let's add the context:

But there will be no poor among you; for the Lord will bless you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you for an inheritance to possess— 5 if only you will strictly obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all this commandment that I command you today.

Poverty would be prevented, but not by a forcible or even a voluntary redistribution of wealth, but by living soundly, no man would become poor. This passage in Deuteronomy is pointing out that poverty is the result of bad choices, not random circumstance. If you live according to the Word as given, without variance, and without exception, you will not be poor. Verse 7 then says that there will be poor, which tells us that men will fail to live up to that standard of obedience. The passage goes on to say to help your brother when he is poor, to lift him up so that he can stand again.

What this passage does not say is that we can eliminate poverty through giving, or through the social redistribution of wealth, as Art implies.

Lev 19;9,10,23.22,24;19-20…the had the right to “glean” in the harvest fields…..therefore did not have to beg for bread or resort to stealing.”
Luke 16;14..”The money –loving Pharisees had little interest in the poor.”
Pro 14;21,28;27…”the Jews were under obligation to assist the poor”
Luke 19;8..”half of my belonging, LORD, I am giving to the poor.”
Luke 14;13,14…”when you spread a feast invite the poor, cripple, lame and blind and you will be happy.”

These passages all deal with giving to the poor, and have nothing to do with a government taking from you and giving some of it to the poor. They speak of charity, not welfare, and there's a big difference. These passages also speak of giving with a glad heart, not having a government take what it wants from you and give some of it to who it decides is worthy.

10 Reasons Jesus was a Socialist

This should be fun.

1. Jesus owned nothing.

On the contrary, Jesus owns everything as the Son of God. All things are His, including us. He will come again and will reign on earth as He now reigns in Heaven as Prince of All.

2. Jesus argued for the dissolution of the family and the establishment of communes.

Notice there are no Scriptural references here. Jesus argued that people should follow Him for their salvation, and that those who did would become His Family, just as His mother and brothers were His Family. He didn't try to dissolve the family; he tried to strengthen and broaden it. If you read the Bible, one of the most striking images is of the Church as the Bride of Christ. Why would the founding family unit be used as a metaphor of our relationship with Christ if Jesus wanted to dissolve the family? As for the establishment of communes, in Acts we read that the early church was established on communist lines, with no personal property, and community ownership of all funds. It worked for a while because each and every member of the group was dedicated to the Lord, to following God and His rules, not mans. An earthly commune cannot last because it will be dedicated to following man's law, not God's.

3. Jesus loved all people regardless of ethnicity or class.

Yes he did, and that included the wealthy and the industrious. Can socialists say the same? I didn't think so.

4. Jesus revolted against the imperial government, established religion and finance capitalism (usury).

Wow. One of the reasons the Jews rejected Jesus was that He didn't lead a revolt against Rome. In fact, He told the Jews to obey Roman law, to pay their taxes, and to live under the oppression. He told the people that when they were required to carry a Roman soldier's equipment for a mile, to carry it two miles. If they were struck by a Roman soldier on the cheek, they were to offer the other cheek. When Pontious Pilate ordered the Crucifiction, Jesus could have avoided it, but He followed the Roman law, even to death.

As for established religion, well, he certainly had a lot of disdain for the Pharisees, but He had the highest regard for Judaism, quoting from the Scriptures constantly, and explaining them to those who misunderstood. He ordered his disciples to go out and spread His Word, to create a body of believers, and he gave those believers orders to carry out. Seen in this light, He wasn't revolting against established religion, but correcting the mistakes and removing the corruption that had grown into the religion. As for finance capitalism, well this passage should clear that one up.

“For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. 15 To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. 16 He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. 17 So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. 18 But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money. 19 Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. 20 And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.’ 21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into a the joy of your master.’ 22 And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here I have made two talents more.’ 23 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’ 24 He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, 25 so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.’ 26 But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? 27 Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest.

In this parable, we see that gifts are to be used for increase, to become greater. Failure to use those gifts is "wicked and slothful" But pay very close attention to vs 17, which speaks of bankers and interest. Finance capitalism is not condemned in the Gospel. Usury, on the other hand, is condemned. The conflation of the two terms is a modern distortion.

5. Jesus taught that we should act as one body, one blood.

Absolutely. Show me a socialist country where everyone is treated the same and I'll buy this a socialist teaching.

6. Jesus taught that his kingdom (ie nation state) is in the heart and not below the feet.

Wrong again. Jesus's kingdom is the Earth and everything in it, on it, above it, and under it. Read Revelation.

7. Jesus taught that we should fight for Justice and 'turn the other cheek' to petty morality.

Really? Where? he taught that we should forgive sinners, but not that we should disregard the sin. There's a big difference here, and I challenge anyone to find any teaching in the Gospel that says we can disregard morality. Being freed from judgment under the Law does not free us from our obligation to honor it. Jesus Himself said that the Law still has a place:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.

8. Jesus was a laborer and a teacher.

And that makes Him a socialist?

9. Jesus practiced healing and forgiveness.

Only socialists forgive? Only socialists can heal? Now Art's just getting ridiculous.

10. Jesus taught that you can't be an imperialist and a disciple at the same time.

No, Jesus taught that you can't be concerned with earthly treasures and be His disciple at the same time. In order to follow Christ, you are required to give up your fleshly life, your earthly concerns, and follow Him.

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Imperialism is too small to fit this message. You can't be a socialist and then a disciple. You can't be a communist and then a disciple. You can only be a disciple first, living in the world, but not being of the world. The more your focus is on earthly matters, like how much the CEO makes, or whether the bank's charge too much interest, the less your focus is on what really matters.

Art engages in an especially pernicious revision of Biblical principles to make his case. What makes it so bad is that not only does he misrepresent Jesus the man, he misrepresents His Divine Message of Salvation. Art's Jesus might be able to feed a lot of people's bodies, but he can't save anyone from damnation. Only the Jesus of the Gospel can do that. Forget the politics, forget the economics, forget all of the things of the world; know that we as humans are corrupted from our original perfection, and that only through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ can we be redeemed to God.

That's a much bigger and more important message than "Jesus was a socialist."

Posted by Rich
Christianity 101 • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, June 22, 2009

There Goes Another One!

What would you do if you saw a post by one of your Facebook friends that was wildly inaccurate, as well as mildly offensive? Would you drop them? Would you just ignore it and assume they didn't know any better? Or would you assume that because it was posted publicly that comments were welcome, even those that disagree, and proceed to comment?

Well, y'all know me, so you know what I did.

Thomas Nephew posted a link to an article about the passage of the bill preventing release of torture documents and commented on it with the following:

Because if it isn't released, then it never happened and we can go back to thinking we're better than Iran.

Obviously, like anybody with more than three active brain cells, I disagreed with this statement, and I very calmly and logically told Thomas why I did so. My first step was to compare water boarding with more physical forms of torture, such as chopping off body parts. I challenged Thomas to produce a working definition of torture that could be used without bias to legally prosecute those who violated that definition. He pointed to the US Code which defines torture very broadly and ambiguously. When I called him on iot by actually quoting the code, and providing an example to see if he could apply that code, he shifted argument to use the "shock the conscience" argument, which has nothing to do with international law and everything to do with the 14th amendment and due process. The last time I checked, the US Constitution does not apply in other countries. I next pointed out that regardless of what had happened, the US was clearly superior to Iran in that we are actually having this discussion. IN Iran, waterboarding would be seen as a vacation between real torture sessions. Not only that, but every time we've seen abuse of prisoners, there have been consequences for the abusers. Prisons were shut down, people were fired and prosecuted for doing things that would have won them raises and bonuses if the were in Iran.

Unable to answer that argument, Thomas then backtracked and said that he didn't really mean what he said, and that his "real friends" would have understood what he meant.

As for Iran -- fine. I hold no brief for that regime, and what I meant in the one liner triggering all this was perfectly clear to actual friends of mine. I was commenting on (a) crimes we've committed and (b) our culture's ADD-like preference (probably anyone's preference) to focus on crimes someone else has committed."

Apparently, "we can go back to thinking we're better than Iran," is actually a secret code phrase for, "Well, we really aren't as bad as Iran. In fact, we're not that bad at all. But by saying this, I can impress my friends by showing how cool I am, and how much I can put down the country that gave me everything I have in favor of one of the most tyrannical regimes on the planet."

Sorry, I didn't get my sooper sekret decoder ring in my Cracker Jack box.

My response to Thomas was simple and direct. "What you wrote was incorrect. I'm sorry I took you at your word."

Yeah, it was a little bit harsh, but at the same time, pretending you didn't really say what you said is pretty much the act of an intellectual coward. Or a hypocrite. Thomas made an inaccurate and inflammatory statement in a semi-public forum and got upset that he was called on it. I'm not sure which part upset him more, that I called him on it, or that I used a reasoned argument that he could neither dismiss out of hand nor counter effectively. So he did the next best thing.

He pulled the "neener-neener" defense, stuck his fingers in his ears, and made sure he couldn't hear me by dropping me.

What is it about some liberals that love to talk smack about America, or about conservatives, but when faced with a factual argument, they roll up their tent and go home? Are they that insecure in their beliefs? I must be very unusual, because I actually welcome a strong challenge. It forces me to really dig deep into what I believe, and be able to back it up. And that makes me stronger as a person. Not only that, but a particularly strong challenge can force me to re-evaluate my ideas, and to test what I believe and to integrate new information. That's called learning, and it doesn't happen when you only talk to people who agree with you, or when you hide behind foolish defenses like, "Well, I may have said it that way, but I meant it another way. My friends would understand!"

Isn't that just a bit too much like high school?

Posted by Rich
Politics • (0) CommentsPermalink

Shotgun Bleg

I just acquired a new bare bones, nothing special, 12 gauge Mossberg 500.

Now I want to kick it up a bit. Stocks, lights, pistol grips, whatever. I'm not really interested in lasers or major optics because, well it's a shotgun. Effective firepower without supreme accuracy is kinda the point.


Posted by Rich
Blogging • (6) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

What Do You Stand For?

Do you stand for freedom? Do you really? Do you believe that freedom is not cultural, but is a fundamental human right?

Then what are you prepared to do for it?

You see, there's a nation in the Middle East that is reaching desperately for freedom. Inspired by the example of their neighbor, they see that they can have more, be more, if they can break free from a tyrannical madman. At desperate risk to their own lives, they are taking to the streets fighting to be free. And they are asking for your help.

What will you do?


Is that the extent of your commitment to spreading freedom from tyranny? Typing 140 characters or less?

Wow. They really could have used your dedication at the Alamo.

Posted by Rich
Politics • (0) CommentsPermalink

A Little Heart to Heart for those on the Left Who are Offended

Joe the Plumber.
Carrie Prejean.
Sarah Palin.
Bristol Palin.
Willow Palin.
"Darth" Cheney
BushHitler, Chimpy McHalliburton, Shrub, etc.
Karl Rove.
"Mr." Dole.
And so many many others.

Your side chose the rules of engagement over the last 8 years, utilizing the politics of personal destruction and irrevocably lowering the level of political discourse in this country to unprecedented depths. By your silence, you supported some of the most outrageous attacks on conservatives and anybody else who got in your way in your mad dash for power and glory. Indeed, some of you joined in the slander and the hate, and did so with relish. The heinous and baseless attacks on the Palin family are still taking place today, over 6 months after the election. David Letterman said things that in an earlier day would have resulted in horsewhipping, yet he is still sitting in his comfy seat, lying his butt off by saying he meant to slander an 18 year old, not a 14 year old.

Like that makes it any better. And if you accept that non-apology, then that makes you just as bad as he is. Let me spell it out for you simpletons; what Letterman said was inappropriate no matter who it was aimed at. If you don't get that, then substitute Obama's daughters for Palins and see how that grabs you. Better yet, substitute your own children.

As I said, you laid out the rules of engagement; you targeted families, you went as low as it is humanly possible to go, and you were happy and proud to do so. Like your idol says, "If you can win, win." The ends justify the means, right?

Well, since that's the way you wanted it, don't expect me to get all hot and bothered because something some anonymous assistant says or does offends your suddenly delicate sensibilities. To be honest, I don't care whether you get offended or not. I don't care if your feelings get hurt. This is the politics the way you wanted it, so grow up and deal with it.

When David Letterman loses his job for the things he said over those two nights, then I'll start to take you seriously. When you start holding your own side accountable for what they say and do, when you force them to start cleaning their own house of racists, bigots, sexists, and other scum, then I'll concede that you have a little bit of room to criticize the other side of the aisle. Until then, any cries of moral outrage coming from you are nothing more than grandstanding hypocrisy, masked by your own delusions of righteousness.

Clean your own house.

Posted by Rich
Politics • (1) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Liberal Rape Fantasies

What is in the Kool Aid these folks are drinking? It's like every time I turn around, I see or hear of another flaming liberal expressing rape fantasies involving conservative women, or even more noxiously, the daughters of conservative women? Why are liberals so obsessed with rape?

First of all, we had the whole Playboy "hatef**k deal, where columnist Guy Cimbalo publicly indulged in fantasies of raping conservative women in what was billed as a "humorous column."

Next we get David Letterman referring to Sarah Palin as "slutty" and insinuating that her 14 year old daughter was a prosititute, and was raped by Alex Rodriguez during a baseball game.

And it's not just on a national stage where this is going on. Check out this series of comments on a local blog post discussing the Tea Party demonstrations in Tennessee.


I’d pay good money to see someone wipe their sweaty hairy scrotum on these backwoods rightwing nutjobs (referring to my wife).

I have a great image of my head now of Michael Moore wiping his nutbutter all over Ann Coulter’s face.


No need to apologize. I enjoy seeing all types of comments. Good debate comes from dissenting opinions and only the passionate truly standup for their beliefs. It’s hard to be passionate and not get emotional.

I keep looking for this rage and hatred in left leaning people...and I have trouble seeing it. Even in Morgan’s comments above I don’t see rage or hatred

See, rape and sexual assault is all in good clean fun. As long as it is done to conservative women.

Or their daughters.

So libs, tell me, what's up with that? Once might be an accident, but it seems more like a trend now.

UPDATE: Add Bill Maher to the list of liberals who like the idea of sexual assault as ong as it is directed at conservative women. The disease spreads.

Posted by Rich
Politics • (2) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Just Because It’s Gorgeous

No more words.

Galactic Center of Milky Way Rises over Texas Star Party from William Castleman on Vimeo.

Posted by Rich
Science • (0) CommentsPermalink

According to Contessa, Calling a Woman a Slut is OK, as Long as it’s a Joke

Oddly, I'm not laughing.

First the setup.

David Letterman thought it would be funny to say during his Monday monologue that Willow Palin, Gov. Palin's 14 year old daughter was "knocked up" by New York Yankee player Alex Rodriguez during the seventh inning stretch. Tuesday night he continued his assault on the Palins by insinuating that Willow was a prostitute.

Yeah, he's a riot that Dave. His humor is always on the cutting edge.

Apparently Dave is miffed that Palin refuses to do his show, so he figured he would just go after her child as revenge.

Now the last New York person to make a crack like this was Don Imus when he insulted the Rutgers basketball team a "joke" that cost him his job on the radio. Will Letterman, whose offense is far worse than anything Imus said, face similar repercussions?

Of course not. Imus insulted a team of young black women; Letterman insulted a young white girl from a conservative family. That makes it okay. We're already seeing the media rushing to his defense.

Check the video below from MSNBC. Contessa Brewer interviews John Ziegler and asks why Sarah Palin would be upset about being called slutty. Think about that for a moment. Either Brewer had no idea what actually was said, which given the current state of journalism is not that hard to believe, or she knew exactly why Palin called Letterman "pathetic" and deliberately chose to try and change the subject from sexual assault to simple slander. Again, given the state of modern journalism, not too hard to believe.

Aside from the fun of watching Ziegler make Brewer look completely incompetent and unprofessional, this interview demonstrates just how out of touch MSNBC is. Think about it. Brewer doesn't operate in a vacuum. She has producers, editors and such who have to buy off on a proposed segment. All of them thought that this interview was a good idea, that it would be hard for Ziegler to explain why Palin was offended. Apparently they thought they could focus all of the attention on the "slutty" remark and defuse the time bomb of implied statutory rape. Thanks to John Ziegler, they failed miserably.

But what will happen to Dave? Will he pay a price? Probably not. He's already released a statement that when talking about Palin's daughter, he was talking about Bristol, not Willow. That's just self serving BS and I don't buy it for a second. Willow was the one in New York with Gov. Palin. She was the one at the ballgame. And she was still the daughter in New York when he made his second attack Tuesday night. He knew exactly what he was doing, and that's why he didn't use her name, to give himself deniability.

Not only is he an ass, he's a coward as well.

Posted by Rich
Blogging • (1) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Presidential Report Card: Employment

I like numbers. And I like charts that are based on numbers. Give me the raw numbers. No smoothing, averaging, or any other numerical torture. Just the numbers themselves.

They draw a clear,unambiguous and unbiased picture of progress, or the lack of progress. There's no spinning, no nuancing. There's just a plainly understandable picture. It says "Here's where we are. Here's where we thought we would be." And then the follow up would be to account for the difference,and that's where you can start to work the numbers.

So let's look at the numbers.


Let's get our bearings. The light blue line is the Obama administration's prediction of what unemployment would do if we didn't act immediately in passing his economic recovery package. The dark blue line is the administration's prediction of the effect their stimulus package would have on unemployment. The brown dots show what is actually happening.

You see how much fun this is? We can see clearly exactly how closely President Obama is meeting his own goals. Unfortunately,he's not doing so well on this one. There's a significant gap between his expectations and reality.

Of course,Obama is a Democrat,so this is not entirely unexpected.

Now that we have the data, the next step is the follow up question. Why aren't we where we thought we would be?

Well, let's look at the numbers.

If you look closely, you can see a slight break between the first two dots, which not only follow the curve but are part of the basis for the curve,and the subsequent dots. The rate of rise of unemployment is steeper in real life than in the projection. There are only two ways to account for this break. Either the problems were more severe than the Obama team recognized, demonstrating either a lack of vision or a disconnect with reality on their part, or their were events taking place at the time, like TARP and the Freddie/Fannie bailouts, that introduced new pressures on the employment market.

The next thing to notice is that the Obama team predicted a sharp decrease in the rate of rise of unemployment as soon as the stimulus package was issued. Clearly that did not happen. Again, their are only two ways to look at this failure. Either the design of the stimulus package was flawed or the projected effect was deliberately overstated.

The third thing to notice is that the projected peak for the non stimulated curve is second quarter 2010 while the peak for the stimulus is third quarter 2009. The real curve has already exceeded the worst case projection of the Obama administration, and while the rate of increase is slowing, we're still losing jobs at a fairly high pace. Where and when the peak will come is very difficult to predict. What is very easy to see, however, is that the Obama stimulus package has not had any positive effect, and may have actually had a negative impact.

So why is this important?

Well, yesterday, President Obama said that he was going to create or save 600,000 jobs over the summer by accelerating the stimulus. The chart clearly shows that he has set an impossible goal. If we project the curve out for the next three months, we can predict that the economy is going to lose another 500,000 jobs or so. (I'm being optimistic.) That means that the economy must show a net gain of at least 100,000 jobs over the summer for Obama to meet his goal.

Not gonna happen.

Let me explain. The rate of increase in unemployment is slowing. Fewer people are losing their jobs each week. We lost half a million in April and about 300,000 in May. Extrapolating that gives me roughly 220,000 in June, 160,000 in July, 100,000 in August. No matter what combination of saving and creating you use, because the goal is greater than the predicted losses, we will have to see a net gain of jobs. So in order to claim victory, Obama will have to shift the goal posts. He's going to have to come up with some rationale for claiming that the employment picture is even bleaker than it actually is. For example, if the economy does shed another half a million jobs over the summer, Obama will have to claim, and explain, why the economy would have shed 1.1 million if he hadn't accelerated the stimulus. That will be a tough sell since he has spent so much time and effort to convince people that things are getting better.

See why I like numbers?

Posted by Rich
Blogging • (1) CommentsPermalink

Monday, June 08, 2009

Warning!  Obama Speaks Sans Teleprompter in the Clip Below


Listen to this, and look at Obama's face while he's speaking.

Why is it that he has to go over to Europe before he's asked a serious question by a reporter? Oh wait. I forgot. European journalists still consider themselves to be reporters, not diarists.

Did you notice that he utterly failed to address Iran in that halting, stuttering, stammering, embarrassment?

Did you also notice the William Shatner speech patterns coming through loud and clear?

Did you notice that he talked for 3 minutes and all he said was, "In the past, all we did was talk. Now, we're going to talk seriously and with firm resolve."

I feel so much better now.

But hey, we elected a black man President! Hooray for us!

Posted by Rich
Politics • (2) CommentsPermalink

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