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August 31, 2012

Last Words? "Don't laugh. You're next."

He pulled the trigger once. Nothing. He pulled the trigger twice. Silence. However, the third pull of the trigger would prove deadly for Gagum. The gun went off, sending a bullet into his head, according to the report.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:52 PM | Your Say (4)

"This Seat's Taken".... Indeed


Found at Blue Collar Philosophy

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:06 PM | Your Say (2)

Why Everyone Else is Wrong


"[P]artisans may be simply unable to stop believing weird things. The partisan brain has been reinforced so many times for performing mental contortions that free it from unwanted beliefs. Extreme partisanship may be literally addictive." -- Jonathan Haidt, The Righteous Mind

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:01 PM | Your Say (0)

John the Baptist after torturing a thief Looks up at his hero the Commander-in-Chief Saying, “Tell me great hero, but please make it brief Is there a hole for me to get sick in?”

President Obama To Receive Honorary Green Beret, Induction Into Special Forces Association [HT: Rodger ]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:56 AM | Your Say (9)

"Representing President Obama by an empty chair is salient, high concept, and very much to the point."

When the President of the United States, on the advice of some of the most savvy media operatives in the world,
feels a need to tweet an instant response to a Hollywood actor who is doing a stand-up comedy routine, you can score one for Dirty Harry. -- Had Enough Therapy?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:26 AM | Your Say (2)

One Line To Rule Them All

"President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans and heal the planet. MY promise . . . is to help you and your family." -- Romney

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:15 AM | Your Say (0)

August 30, 2012

Fact Checkers

Hope n' Change Cartoons: Pop Goes the Weasel

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:31 PM | Your Say (2)

Isaac Misses New Orleans!

A nation mourns.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:32 PM | Your Say (3)

Dems Don' Need Mo' Ho's. They're Full Up.

"Say goodnight, Gracie"

Clinton staying as far away from Charlotte as physically possible
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, as a sitting administration official, does not have any role at the Democratic National Convention next week in Charlotte. But she seems to gone out of her way to avoid the festivities, as she is traveling this week and next to the Cook Islands, Indonesia, China, Timor-Leste, Brunei, and Russia

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:28 PM | Your Say (2)

MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty on Obama

In recovery

"I’ve come to realize that Barack Obama is the tattoo president.
Like a big tattoo, it seemed cool when you were young. But later on, that decision doesn’t look so good, and you wonder: what was I thinking? But the worst part is you’re still going to have to explain it to your kids." -- Tim Pawlenty RNC speech transcript
This one will be especially tough.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:41 PM | Your Say (11)

Fuck your wall manifesto.


via Fuck Your Noguchi Coffee Table

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:57 AM | Your Say (14)

Well, there's always cheating....

Given These Startling Facts, How Can Obama Win? [HT: Curmudgeonly]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:54 AM | Your Say (0)

Working-Class Hero


Meet Wheel Clamp Man, who comes to the aid of motorists after their cars get wheel clamped, in Perth, Australia. Armed with an angle grinder and wearing a green lycra suit, a bright red cape and coloured socks, this vehicle vigilante swoops to the aid of Perth drivers who fall prey to parking inspectors. -- Pictures of the day: 28 August 2012 - Telegraph

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:11 AM | Your Say (4)

Well, for voting the way they did... maybe they should.


"College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life." -- Paul Ryan via Had Enough Therapy?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:10 AM | Your Say (1)

“The thug is dead, long live the thug.”

If the good news is that Assad is doomed; the bad news is this in no wise implies that liberty is alive.
An Egypt now freed from the clutches of Mubarak can look forward to the depredations of the Muslim Brotherhood. It's on the way, in Spengler'™s words, to being "North Korea on the Nile" where nothing is for sale except trouble. -- Belmont Club » An Uncertain Hour

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:46 AM | Your Say (0)

Taken Pictures

I tell my children that you used to have to buy a reel of plastic film covered with metallic goo and keep it hermetically sealed in an expensive camera,
and when you were done with 24 pictures or so, you'd take them out and drive to a store and leave them with a clerk and then go back a week later after they were done drizzling them with strange chemicals and printing them on shiny pieces of paper. They were all completely white or completely black, generally, when you finally got a look at them. I tell them, but they figure I'm pulling their leg. -- Sippican Cottage: More Fauxderol

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:33 AM | Your Say (2)

August 29, 2012

"If I'm Joe Biden or Eric Holder, and I value my brain pan,"

"I'm not going to be within 2 statute miles of Barack Obama for the last 10 days of the campaign. Causes need martyrs, and omelettes need eggs." -- Velociworld: Pop! Goes The Weasel

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:52 PM | Your Say (6)

It's hard to know what the Democratic Party stands for anymore.

The left imagines that it is somehow better than the lunatics of the Westboro Baptist Church
who randomly show up at funerals screaming about homosexuality. It's not. Not when its members show up randomly brandishing nooses or dressing up as body parts and screaming about racism or sexism. There's no hint of responsible leadership in tactics like that. It's the behavior of a debating club loser who has memorized only one winning point and will shout it no matter what the issue is. -- Sultan Knish: A Party of Trolls

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:47 PM | Your Say (4)

Pupil Poking Suggestions from Simmons

Who better to advise parents on what to do with young children?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:03 PM | Your Say (0)

The Unseen Class War That Could Decide The Presidential Election

Obama’s core middle-class support, and that of his party, comes from what might be best described as “the clerisy,”

a 21st century version of France’s pre-revolution First Estate. This includes an ever-expanding class of minders — lawyers, teachers, university professors, the media and, most particularly, the relatively well paid legions of public sector workers — who inhabit Washington, academia, large non-profits and government centers across the country.... Like the old clerical classes, who relied on tithes and the collection bowl, many in today’s clerisy lives somewhat high on the hog; nearly one in five federal workers earn over $100,000. -- Newgeography.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:53 PM | Your Say (5)

Losing All Around

Word Around the Net: U MAD? LOL AS A WORLDVIEW In the place of humor, we have frivolity.
In the place of wisdom, we have sarcasm. In the place of critical thought, we have mockery. And that's all across the culture. Watch any ten advertisements and you'll see it again and again, belittling others for humor, mocking people just to get a laugh or attention. Everyone is a pathetic, out of touch loser unless they're just like you.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:46 PM | Your Say (1)

Fanfare for the Common Man

3:30 ... Wait for it.

Cristie has what they used to call the common touch.
Even his girth, so unusual for a politician today, conveys that impression, as does his accent, which speaks to me personally of home. Christie took the high road, and it was a stroke of genius for him to basically ignore Obama, which probably infuriated Obama even more than excoriating him would have. -- neo-neocon サ Blog Archive サ The Ann and Chris show

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:08 PM | Your Say (1)

Lawrence Auster @ VFR writes:


Humm, where have I heard that before? Oh yes, right here.

Since February 2008 with The Conservative No McCain Zone: Big Arguments for a Bad Idea @ AMERICAN DIGEST

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:00 PM | Your Say (1)

Naming Clothing Store "Hitler" Just An Oversight


A clothing store called ‘Hitler’ has upset residents and the small Jewish community in Vastrapur, in Ahmedabad, India.
The shop owners do not find the name objectionable. “We had put up a cloth banner for over a month saying ‘Hitler opening shortly’, no one objected to the name then,” Rajesh Shah, the co-owner of the shop told Times Of India. -- National Post
The New Look

Next step, the kids' store: "Hitler Youth."

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:27 AM | Your Say (3)

Search for Unknown Hero Back On Track

Yasser Arafat 'murder investigation launched’ - Telegraph [Too little and too late but at least it got done.]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:20 AM | Your Say (3)

MSNBC's Chris Matthews Unveils Photo of Republican Racial Code Book


CHUCK TODD: How do the code words work?

CHRIS MATTHEWS: How do they work? Racists hear a certain word being used and they understand the speaker is referring to our black president in a derogatory way.

CHUCK TODD: But how do they know the code words?

JOAN WALSH: They all have a copy of the book.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: From what experts have told me, there are as many as 100 hundred thousand racial code words being used by Mitt Romney and the Republicans. -- Daily Rash

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:06 AM | Your Say (12)

August 28, 2012

‘Bob the Nailer’ is Back

Although set in the approximate present, The Third Bullet is more about the 1960s than any other of Stephen Hunter's recent books.
It is a return as it were to the Origin of Everything. The dramatic hook is nothing less than the central mystery of modern American history, the JFK assassination. What happened on That Day in Dallas, the day which had such fateful consequences for Bob the Nailer's generation? And who better to answer the question and unravel its final mysteries than Bob Lee Swagger himself? -- Belmont Club サ The Third Bullet

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:22 PM | Your Say (0)

Liberalism is incompatible with dignity,

We have a culture that treats Madonna Ciccone as an icon,
that treats a soccer player who has mutilated his body with grotesque tattoos as an icon, a culture in which creepy leering ads for erection enhancers are broadcast constantly on radio and TV, a culture in which none of these things are seriously opposed by anyone, let alone by any respected political, religious, or intellectual figures, and we still expect there to be dignity? -- Liberalism and dignity

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:37 PM | Your Say (5)

"Unexpectedly:" As in "Never Saw It Coming"

U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly weakened in August to its lowest in nine months as Americans turned more pessimistic about the short-term outlook, according to a private sector report released on Tuesday. -- US Consumer Confidence Tumbles to 9-Month Low

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:39 PM | Your Say (0)

A Moment With Joe Biden: "I Love the Asian People

"Not just the geishas either. No, seriously. But, you people should be proud.
When I travel around to software companies like this, I see so many young Asians -- I've talked to so many Asians I'm surprised I'm not fluent in Oriental by now, by God. But, I have a best buddy back home named Chin Lee. And, he'€™s such a great guy, God love 'im. And, just the other day I ran into Chin over at the local Bob's Big Boy, where I eat about once a week, and Chin says to me, "Joe, you've gotta keep these Republicans from destroying the economy. Under you and Barack, the economy has gotten so much better" -- and this is from an Asian guy, he knows math.... IMAO

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:28 PM | Your Say (5)

The liberal West has its illusions about the enemy.

Sultan Knish: Countdowns in Tehran and Jerusalem Israel has little room for those illusions.

It will act when Washington is too busy fighting itself to focus on restraining it. It will act because it is alone as few other countries on earth are. It will act because it cannot afford to be Poland, Czechoslovakia or Tibet-- sacrificed in the great game of nations. It will act because it has no real choice but to act. It will act because for it this is not a set of talking points, a diplomatic program or a regional agenda, it is life or death. It will act, because for all its flaws, its survival is on the line.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:15 PM | Your Say (5)

As his bitter half said, ours is a country that is "just downright mean" and "guided by fear."

Really? I won't argue the point.
What is more interesting is that this is no doubt how [Michelle Obama] truly perceives things, because this is who she is:
narrow, bigoted, ungrateful, and more than a little thick. So thick that one laments the unfairness of a system that eases such a defective intellect through its most elite universities, just so liberals-of-palor can feel good about themselves. -- One Cʘsmos: Don't Look a Gift Cosmos in the Mouth

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:34 AM | Your Say (2)

Hint: There Is None

"Looking to the future, what is the Republican strategy ever again to win New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois or California, other than due to some national calamity or new depression?" -- Last Hurrah of Nixon’s ‘New Majority’?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:44 AM | Your Say (9)

"Now combat the aftereffects of laughter and fun!"


Great for wearing at home or in the bath, daily use will result in clear effects soon becoming visible
and eventually a "smaller" face (that's what "Kogao" means). The double layer of nylon and polychloroprene will trap heat and work on those smile lines or laugh lines that we all hate. In pink and gray, the tight belt may take a little getting used to but you will soon be smiling, all while knowing you can now combat the aftereffects of laughter and fun. --

Kogao! Smile Lines Face Belt

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:39 AM | Your Say (6)

August 27, 2012

The Cheesemaker Occupation Must End

The criminal Israeli siege of Gaza allows through food and clothing, but not knives. Many Gazans must make do with a single knife for the entire family.
Only one of them is able to use the knife at a time. If the grandmother of a large family wants to slice bread while her grandson breaks into a settlement to slit a baby's throat-- she has no choice but to starve. That is the real tragedy here. -- Sultan Knish

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:05 PM | Your Say (1)

VD is for Everybody (1969)

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:46 PM | Your Say (5)

"This city is rotten from the inside, at its heart, where the real disease takes hold. "

Smaller lessons move in and have all the heft of dry rot on a swatch of lace, having been eaten through by the weevils:
The road is yours to do with as you please. To protect your women is to presume superiority, so leave them take care of themselves. Keep many flimsy and shoddy things, and waste no energy in keeping them kept. Make things if you must, but do it quickly and leave your heart out of it. There is no one more important than you – insist that all others appreciate that. This America is someone else’s, and that person is long dead -- work against it. -- Carrying On, With an Old Dirge « The Dipso Chronicles

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:06 PM | Your Say (0)

There Are Wars and Rumors of Wars and Then There Is "Promoting Regional Security in Somalia"

Guard Unit To Depart For Africa A departure ceremony is planned for 565 Kentucky National Guard soldiers who will deploy to Africa for nine months.
Maj. Gen. Edward W. Tonini, adjutant general for Kentucky, will attend the sendoff ceremony Friday at the Frankfort Convention Center for soldiers assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery. The soldiers will deploy to the Horn of Africa where they will work to promote regional security and stability. The Lexington-based unit, which completed tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, is the most decorated in the Kentucky National Guard. --

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:34 PM | Your Say (3)

"A dangerous ambition "

"more often lurks behind the specious mask of zeal for the rights of the people than under the forbidden appearance of zeal for the firmness and efficiency of government.
History will teach us that the former has been found a much more certain road to the introduction of despotism than the latter, and that of those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people; commencing demagogues, and ending tyrants. -- Adams, The Federalist #1

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:57 PM | Your Say (3)

Toby - A Well Known Imposter


'Toby. / This vile impostor, whose real name is unknown, was a negro, and, in the early part of the present century,
frequented the streets of London, where successfully levied contributions on the credulity of the humane. Having lost all his toes, while on board a merchantman, he was rendered an object of compassion. During his perambulations he appeared almost double with age and infirmity, but when night came on, he threw off restrant, and walked upright to the beggars meeting, where there was not a more jovial member.' " -- BibliOdyssey: Eccentric Characters

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:36 PM | Your Say (2)

Some men spent their days tracking and killing animals to barbeque at night

while they were drinking beer. This was the beginning of what is known as “the Conservative movement.”
Other men who were weaker and less skilled at hunting learned to live off the Conservatives by showing up for the nightly barbeques and doing the sewing, fetching and hair dressing. This was the beginning of the Liberal movement. Some of these liberal men eventually evolved into women. The rest became known as girlymen. -- Old Hippie via House of Eratosthenes

Posted by Vanderleun at 9:56 AM | Your Say (2)

"It used to be alright in films to have actual Arab-descent terrorists trying to blow things up and kill people."

Bizarrely, it would seem this stopped being okay the day it actually happened.
Smoking is prohibited, alcohol consumption is discouraged. The good guy cannot be conspicuously associated with pretty girls but the bad guy can. Gay is fashionable, straight is not, and heterosexual urges in all forms are to be severely muted down, unless they’re urges from the female toward the male. -- House of Eratosthenes

Posted by Vanderleun at 9:30 AM | Your Say (2)

Economic privation, up to and including starvation,

is not necessarily a hindrance to the exercise of power.
As the Bolsheviks demonstrated in 1917, the Somali warlords during the 1990s, and North Korea for the past two decades, starvation benefits a totalitarian party ruthless enough to employ it as a weapon of social control. Reports from Egypt indicate that Morsi has begun rationing of daily essentials, reinforcing the Muslim Brotherhood's grip on power. -- Spengler -- North Korea on the Nile

Posted by Vanderleun at 9:01 AM | Your Say (2)

Perimeter Access

The security arrangements at the convention are over the top, onerous, and almost comic in their look-at-me,-I'm-wearing-SWAT-gear swagger. 
But maybe the most disconcerting aspect of the affair is the two-tier, us-and-them, plebs-and-elites aroma that suffuses the event.  Almost everyone is herded, cattle-like, through the security maze. Everyone who is let into the fenced-in enclosure has a bouquet of badges hung around his neck. But some few have badges that bear the legend “perimeter access,” and they get special treatment. A tiny elite is ostentatiously whisked through on golf carts or in limos, just as they are in various Latin American or Soviet-era despotisms. -- Roger’s Rules »

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:37 AM | Your Say (0)

August 26, 2012

We have become a rationing society.

Our industries and our people are literally starving in the midst of plenty.
Farmers are kept from farming, factories are kept from producing and businessmen are kept from creating new companies and jobs. This is done in the name of a variety of moral arguments, ranging from caring for the less fortunate to saving the planet. But rhetoric is only the lubricant of power. The real goal of power is always power. Consolidating production allows for total control through the moral argument of rationing, whether through resource redistribution or cap and trade. -- Sultan Knish: Starving Amidst Plenty

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:07 PM | Your Say (2)

"Things are moving beyond torches, tar, and feathers into rope and tall tree territory"

FCC eyes tax on Internet service
The FCC could run into legal problems with the Internet Tax Freedom Act, a 1998 law that bans the government from taxing Internet access. But the FCC has long argued that Universal Service is a fee that the providers choose to pass on to consumers and not a tax.

Oh, it's a "fee"that's passed on and not a "tax." Well, okay then that makes all the difference. In like manner, this is not a noose, it's just a lasso.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:42 PM | Your Say (2)



"The young man pictured here, perhaps at the start of his own incredible journey,
who stood silently in front of the sculpture for twenty minutes last night, would agree that Armstrong was a man whose life and achievements will not be forgotten. -- Kuriositas

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:32 PM | Your Say (0)

OMG!!! The Rudest Mark!!!!


The History of the Exclamation Point It wasn’t until 1970 that the exclamation point had its own key on the keyboard.
Before that, you had to type a period, and then use the backspace to go back and stick an apostrophe above it. When people dictated things to secretaries they would say “bang” to mark the exclamation point. Hence the interobang (?!) – a combination of a question (?) and an exclamation point (!). In the printing world, the exclamation point is called “a screamer, a gasper, a startler or a dog’s cock.”

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:19 AM | Your Say (4)

"His lies are only addressed to a part of America."

"To the little people with little hearts and little brains, who just want to do what they think everybody else is already doing. And pocket lots of free stuff, with the bill sent to strangers." -- House of Eratosthenes

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:26 AM | Your Say (0)

Brain Dead Campaign Drools On

Obama Campaign says Romney's career at Bain Capital "was not about creating jobs, it was about creating profits." -- Mark Knoller (@markknoller) August 24, 2012

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:05 AM | Your Say (1)

August 25, 2012

A Bubble Reputation

USA Today quotes studies which suggest that 70% of Barack Obama's Twitter followers are fake....
The discovery that many of President Obama’s legion followers are fake seems strangely suited to the tenor of his administration, which abounds in imaginary objects. -- Belmont Club

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:47 PM | Your Say (1)

Brain Storm: "Okay, here's the plan. Let's have our convention in a city in the hurricane zone at the start of hurricane season! Okay?"


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:50 PM | Your Say (12)

Maybe NBC Should Hire Some Guys in Pajamas


NBC gets this week’s Brian Ross Award for brain-dead reporting. - Power Line

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:48 PM | Your Say (6)

Meat America

VIA -- the ever popular Neatorama

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:38 PM | Your Say (0)

"We know Gore has become a wealthy man,


"but what actual value-added to the economy did Gore perform to "€œaccumulate more than $100 million in wealth"? ....
Plus there’s the blatant hypocrisy of the man. Sure, his “10,000-square-foot colonial in Nashville” has “geothermal wells, buried beneath the driveway, [to] cool and heat its 20 rooms.” Isn’t that special! Of course, his “luxury apartment at the St. Regis tower” in San Francisco (2,800 square feet, the story informs us) doesn’t have geothermal, but apparently it has his girlfriend. Then there’s his new abode in Montecito; no word on geothermal here." -- Depends Whose Gore Is Being Oxed | Power Line

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:27 PM | Your Say (6)

"Shame is the only measure to break the cycle of violence,"

by breaking the rewards that violence brings. You can “flood the zone” with as many cops as you want, as long as great sex with the hottest women sit as the rewards for hyper-violence, men will reliably kill for that sex.
The reason this shame does not exist is most White cowardice in the face of … other Whites. Fear of being called “racist” leads to elaborate euphemisms, double-talk, pretending, and ignoring reality. Whites don’t call Black men and women on their dysfunctional, single motherhood driven, thug-loving, sex for violence reward society. -- Nike vs. the Urban League | whiskeysplace

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:09 PM | Your Say (0)

Nothing Sacred or True: Ikea Uses Fake, Digitally Created Rooms Inside Its Catalog


IKEA publishes 208 million catalogs a year (more than double the amount of Bibles, apparently) and I'm guessing very few people know they're looking at rooms that don't exist. But look at that side table! Only 19 bucks! -- Gizmodo

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:38 AM | Your Say (6)

Murphy's Laws of Police Operations

3. Police bullets are just as happy to kill you as the bad guy. More "Laws" are being collected in the comments at Sensing's Sense of Events

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:27 AM | Your Say (6)

August 24, 2012

New York, 10 Chicago, 19 | Windy City Still Rules.

Guy Shoots Up Street Outside Empire State Building
Since some of the victims were black and/or women we may be blessed with an Obama press conference explaining how he arrived at the scene, directed the police to take the madman out, served soup to some homeless guys and kissed a few babies as an afterthought. He’s just that awesome.

19 people shot in overnight shootings across Chicago
The overnight shootings peaked between 9:15 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. That's when eight people, many of them teens, were shot at 79th Street and Essex Avenue about 9:30 p.m.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:30 AM | Your Say (5)



For a meditation on this cheap fix see: Word Around the Net.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:11 AM | Your Say (10)

"It’s nothing personal. I just hate people like you."

"I can’t stand the people on your side. Not you, particularly. You’re fine. It’s your side that’s ruining everything great about this country.
Your side lies shamelessly. Your leaders just make things up. And you just follow them blindly, like sheep -- like blind sheep. You hang out with people who think just like you, and listen only to shows where you’ll hear your own views repeated. It’s an echo chamber of lies!" -- I’m Right, You’re Wrong and Other Political Truths - Bloomberg

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:44 AM | Your Say (10)

Water Wigs


Using a large number of good looking bald men as the focus of each scene, Tadder and his team threw water balloons at the subjects' heads and captured the results. -- - My Modern Metropolis

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:35 AM | Your Say (7)

Monkey Business: "The monkey urinated on him and disappeared."


Since 2009, Yates estimates that he has gone after the animal on roughly 100 different occasions. The monkey was his white whale.
He claimed to have darted it at least a dozen times, steadily upping the tranquilizer dosage, to no avail. The animal is too wily — it retreats into the woods and sleeps off the drug. A few times, the monkey stared Yates right in the eye and pulled the dart out. -- American Monkey Freedom - Chris Piascik

Nicole Kidman could probably bring the monkey in.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:32 AM | Your Say (7)

"I Was In Character." Nothing to See Here. Move Along.


Nicole Kidman strips down to talk:
"The 45-year-old Hollywood veteran urinates on the hunky actor in their latest flick, “Paperboy,” after Efron’s character is stung by a jellyfish. “The peeing thing, I didn’t think that was weird, because I was in character,” Kidman said.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:30 AM | Your Say (4)

Pathetic Mortals! Smell and Worship My Buttocks!

Obama: 'It Is Very Rare I Come to an Event Where I’m Like the Fifth or Sixth Most Interesting Person'

Really? Here's hoping we soon come to an event where you are the second most popular candidate.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:20 AM | Your Say (4)

Masters of Imitation

Why It Won’t Be A Chinese Century: What Chinese, and Russian, and Brazilian, and Indian companies are not capable of at the moment,
and show little sign of achieving, is creating their own, domestically invented, world-changing products. China remains the world textile production center, yet all the new and interesting fabrics, the ones that change color, wick sweat away, repel bacteria, repel dirt, and don’t wrinkle in the dryer while retaining the feel of cotton … are done elsewhere. In Italy, or the United Kingdom, or Japan, or the US.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:21 AM | Your Say (2)

Symptoms of the Cure

"My daughter's happiness is all simple, and all wonderful, and none of it is dependent upon her own perception of her cleverness among the throngs. There are only two people in the world who know how to smile like a four year old: A four year old, and the person holding her hand. It's never long before she tells me I'm squeezing too hard." -- The Dipso Chronicles

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:48 AM | Your Say (0)

August 23, 2012

First World Problem #3,427,233


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:53 PM | Your Say (3)

Blame Midol!


As unearthed by Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:38 PM | Your Say (6)

"The Department of Social Inclusion has staff, a budget, an advisory committee and a minister overseeing it all. Still, no one is quite sure what the department is supposed to do. "

For all their intellectual vanity, it is clear that the Left is not only incapable of organising a root in a brothel,
the brothel itself would be renamed a non-procreative recreational outlet; a place where lonely men could part with their hard-earned to have one off the wrist over dog-eared photographs of Margaret Mead while the organisers stood in the hallway arguing angrily about the phallic symbolism of the stairway banister. -- Jack the Insider

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:31 PM | Your Say (5)

A Blast from the Ass


Seymour Chwast Illustrates a Barack Obama Quote

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:50 AM | Your Say (0)

Failure to Thrive

We’re the richest country on earth — four and a half percent of the world’s people producing more than twenty percent of the world’s wealth.
But you wouldn’t know from the cheapjack spending squabbles in Congress. We possess more military power than the rest of the planet combined. Though you couldn’t tell by the way we’re treated by everyone from the impotent Kremlin to the raggedy councils of the Taliban. The earth is ours. We have the might and means to achieve the spectacular—and no intention of doing so. -- Of Thee I Sigh: Baby Boomers Bust P. J. O'Rourke

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:01 AM | Your Say (3)

The Lancashire Witches 1612-2012


She was, along with a number of others named by the children, rounded up,
and by the time of the trial in August the Pendle accused had been joined in the dungeons of Lancaster Castle by other alleged witches from elsewhere in the county. All nineteen were tried in the space of two days, amid dramatic courtroom scenes. Ten of them were hanged the next day on Lancaster Moor, high above the town and overlooking Morecambe Bay. It was probably the first time any of them had seen the sea. -- The Public Domain Review

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:28 AM | Your Say (4)

People speak of the onrush of the police state. I think that many do not understand how fast it comes, or how thorough it will be.

America is no longer a democracy. If you think this a rash assertion, ask yourself
whether you have the slightest influence over policies that matter to you. Suppose that you want to end the wars, shrink the military, end affirmative action, genuinely change education, or reform a hostile and unworkable bureaucracy. Who do you vote for? Important policies are made in faceless bureaucracies immune to public influence. National politics employs a sort of political price-fixing, in which you are permitted to choose among a number on indistinguishable candidates and told that you are having an election. None of this is going to stop. -- Fred On Everything

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:56 AM | Your Say (4)

Still Life with Glasses | Oil on Linen

Travis Seymour

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:50 AM | Your Say (1)

Obama on Akin: A Small Edit

"What these comments do underscore is why we shouldn't have a bunch of politicians, a majority of whom are men, men and women both, making health care decisions on behalf of women of everyone in the nation not lucky enough to be on their Cadillac health plan."

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:39 AM | Your Say (0)

In politics, hate is stronger than love.

The biggest friends of the welfare state would rather see the welfare state disappear than publicly say "Please" or "Thank you" to the taxpayers who make their favorite programs possible. -- Bryan Caplan | EconLog

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:31 AM | Your Say (0)

if I were in the business of trying to get rich people to pay more in taxes,

I'd behave more like any good fundraiser (or gold digger or stripper). 
I'd beef up my target'€™s ego; tell them they'€™re the best; thank them profusely for their contribution.  And a smart one doesn'€™t screw the pooch by getting huffy and puffy if the whale doesn'€™t come through on the initial visit.  The expert procurer wears a smile and says "€œthank you"€.  It'€™s good for business. -- The Costanza Principle « Gucci Little Piggy

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:03 AM | Your Say (0)

Today, a mentally challenged man tried to convince me to vote for Mitt Romney.


and I must say, he did a terrific job of it. -- the comatorium •

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:54 AM | Your Say (0)

“She is a monster of staggering charmlessness and monumental lack of humour ….

I am coldly sarcastic with her to the point of outright contempt but she hears only what she wants to hear ….
She is a tired old woman and lives entirely on that weekly show which she has been doing and successfully doing for 19 years. Nineteen solid years of double-takes and pratfalls and desperate upstaging and cutting out other people’s laughs if she can, nervously watching the ‘ratings’ as she does so … I loathe her today but now I also pity her. I make a point of never seeing her again …. Milady Ball can thank her lucky stars that I am not drinking. There is a chance that if I had I might have killed her. Jack Benny, the most amiable man in the world, and one of the truly great comedians of our time, says that in 4 days she reduced his life expectancy by 10 years.” -- Richard Burton on Lucille Ball. [ - Walt Disney With Blood]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:40 AM | Your Say (7)

Countdowns in Tehran and Jerusalem

Everyone knows that Obama is not about to bomb Iran on behalf of Saudi Arabia and its colony in Bahrain.
He is as likely to do it for Israel as he is to move to South Carolina and join the NRA. But he isn't alone in that regard. Despite the fevered fantasies of everyone from Noam Chomsky to Ron Paul, no American president would ever bomb Iran for Israel. If a third Gulf War is fought, it will be fought for Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, one more time. -- Dan Greenfield's Sultan Knish [which has a spiffy new look]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:31 AM | Your Say (1)

August 22, 2012

Elizabeth Warren’s campaign HQ is also 0/32 Cherokee!

This is what diversity looks like. -- the comatorium /a>

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:31 PM | Your Say (0)

40 Years of Media Manipulation Is Not Undone By A Cynical Quip | Primordial Slack

NOW that we’re at the abyss, some of these prissy boys and sissy girls get alarmed? Like they never gave a second thought to the ends of their fun little games? Oh, well done! Now get busy and stop pussyfooting with the Truth. You OWE your country something and I’m not gonna get all misty-eyed at your “bravery.” Come January another million people will be directly unemployed by the military. Another million in a secondary wave of penury for the camp-followers of the military. How many times did Bush try to amend and fix Fannie Mae? Where WERE you? At the trough of the race-mongers, that’s where. Feh.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:26 AM | Your Say (0)

Corzine: Just not a detail man


"I simply do not know where the money is... I do not know which accounts are unreconciled or whether the unreconciled accounts were, or were not, subject to the segregation rules." -- Jon Corzine [Theo Spark [HT: Bird Dog]]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:45 AM | Your Say (14)

Our Long National Nightmare is Over!

For those of you waiting on pins and needles to get your hands on Thom Browne's "afforable" new menswear line, its time to break out the plastic. Barneys.com just released the collection and you better believe some bare ankles are on full display. -- Thom Grey

Fashion Collars by Bianca Raffaela

Men's Eyebrow Shaving Guide: Made in collaboration with hair and make-up artist Keiko Obana, this is a special "otaku mayu" (man eyebrow) beauty tool which acts like a frame or stencil for you to groom carefully, giving you perfectly shaped eyebrows.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:33 AM | Your Say (15)

August 21, 2012

The chief function of a Vice President

is making the President look good and by that measure Joe Biden is one of the best vice presidents who ever lived.
The rule of thumb is that the more incompetent the man at the top is, the more of a buffoon the man just below him needs to be to make him look good. And again Biden does this job brilliantly. --Sultan Knish: The Scarecrow of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:07 PM | Your Say (2)

If anyone deserves credit for killing the Village Voice, it's George W. Bush,


who was its unwitting cover boy more often than Obama has appeared on the cover of Essence.
Under Bush the entire media became alternative and the alternative media became supplementary to requirements. When mainstream newspapers give positive reviews to books and movies that envision Bush's assassination, cheerlead anti-war rallies run by militant Trotskyites and demand unilateral surrender in the War on Terror; what possible territory is left for the alternative media to explore? All that was left for the alternative media was to run yet another profile of a new bar where people drink the tears of Ecuadoran children purchased through fair trade while looking at themselves doing it in video monitors as an artistic commentary on capitalism. And these days that's what the internet is for. -- Sultan Knish: The End of the Alternative Media

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:04 PM | Your Say (2)

More electric cars. More epic fail.

Chronicles of Ineptitude:
Another ironically named Fisker Karma has caught fire, leading to the third recall of the vehicles. Maybe electric cars will work adequately some day, and the Fisker Karma (retail cost: $102,000) will be remembered as the Ford Pinto of the new generation of electrics. Now that would be karma.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:44 PM | Your Say (5)


Doug Ross @ Journal: We interrupt the kerfuffle over Missouri's senate candidate to bring you a spreading Middle East conflict already in progress
In a clear violation of the Camp David Accords, Egypt's new Islamofascist government is moving heavy weapons into the Sinai Desert, another worrying sign for Israelis already concerned with Iran's growing nuclear and ballistic missile capabilities.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:28 PM | Your Say (0)

"Ohlin’s stories suffer hyperglycemic shock because she’s incapable of mustering the requisite insulin."

Her sensibility clings either to calamity (homicides, heart attacks, car wrecks, missing persons, a drowning death, a drug overdose, testicular cancer)
or to affected stupefaction (the sudden arrival of a brother given up for adoption, unplanned pregnancies, the mysterious stranger). A sensibility of that sort — schooled not in Austen but in Susan Lucci — invariably collapses into sentimentality, and no sentimentalist has ever written a potent prose. -- ‘Inside’ and ‘Signs and Wonders,’ by Alix Ohlin

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:24 PM | Your Say (1)

USA Today busts another exclusive wide open:


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:51 PM | Your Say (1)

The Gas Tank Of Damocles

The economy is in exactly the same shape as my wife's gas tank
-- filled with fuel which only makes it sag on its rusty underpinnings further, making it more difficult to fix, and dangerous to be underneath, but you must bang around under there anyway because there's no other choice. Nervous Nellies endlessly warn me that if it was all released at once, it would explode, but that eventuality is remote compared to going hungry because we can't drive to the supermarket until it's fixed. -- Sippican Cottage:

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:23 PM | Your Say (0)

At this stage in the campaign....


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:20 PM | Your Say (1)

Nice people often make excellent servants of evil.

The continual, 24/7 saturation propaganda for evil; the moral and aesthetic inversions,
the pervasive relativism and dishonesty which are inflicted upon Western humanity by the mass media, government officials, education, the legal system etc. - these do not have their own primary agenda, but are activitiesin service of, driven by, purposive evil - which is why the participants are so often nice people. -- Bruce Charlton

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:15 AM | Your Say (0)

There is Always a State Religion

The state faith must drive out all competitors for the hearts of men.
It cannot ever rest until it has won that victory, for in no other way may its primacy be understood by the governed as legitimate, or social order therefore be preserved. The state faith must be a church militant. It must brand all dissenters as traitors, not just to the social order, but to the Good. In the limit, it must exterminate or banish them. -- The Orthosphere

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:34 AM | Your Say (1)



Machine gun in right hand. Cell phone in left. Mr. Sheikha, who defected from the Syrian Army about six weeks ago. On duty on the gun-truck’s machine gun, at 80 miles an hour into Aleppo, checking messages along the way.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:59 AM | Your Say (6)

"The truth is that there are very few marriage-capable women left to marry."

Men who start out with noble aims of life
- long married love and self-sacrificial commitment - quickly learn to settle for recreational sex from a series of temporary partners - and sometimes very temporary partners in the case of hook-ups on college campuses.  Marriage is just not there for us to achieve anymore, because most women haven'€™t made the right decisions that will allow them to be supportive and faithful to their husbands. They aren't ready to step into the roles of wife and mother. -- How do prostitutes stay in business in an era of hook-up sex? « Wintery Knight [HT: Sensing]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:38 AM | Your Say (3)

Helmet Art of Awesome. After delivering U.S.... | #SOLDIERPORN

After delivering U.S. Soldiers and Iraq dignitaries to their final destinations, Crew Chief Sgt. Fred Oser, A. Co. 2-25, Combat Aviation Brigade, attached to 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, dismounts the 240 Bravo Machine Guns from the UH-60 Black Hawk used during the morning’s mission to several Combined Security Checkpoints in the Ninewa Province, Iraq, July 2, 2010.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:58 AM | Your Say (0)

August 20, 2012

Silly Literary Allusion Headline of the Month

The incredible lightness of Biden: " It was not until 45 minutes after he had begun that Joseph I. Biden simply ran out of gas. He came to no conclusion, no closing thought. He just stopped talking, looked down, and at last took a bite of food and drank some water."

Because he is, after all is said and done, a silly, silly, silly -- a silly and stupid man. That or perhaps he actually is......

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:46 PM | Your Say (1)

"Chomsky is a man who has dedicated essentially his entire public life to political evil."

In one of his earliest books, he wrote that America requires a process of de-Nazification.
He has denied saying this, but again, it's right there in black and white. I think its impossible to understand Chomsky's politics without understanding that, to him, the US is morally equivalent to Nazi Germany and needs to be dealt with accordingly. It should be noted, by the way, that this was a very important aspect of post-war Stalinist propaganda, and I have no doubt that Chomsky adopted it from that rather dubious source. -- The Last Totalitarian | World Affairs Journal

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:58 PM | Your Say (3)

"Do you think I'm not aware of what you're saying / Or why you're saying it? / Is it hard to keep me where you want me staying? / Don't go on betraying it / Don't make promises you can't keep"

In his inaugural address, Obama promised “not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.”
He promised to “build the roads and bridges, the electric grids, and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.” He promised to “restore science to its rightful place and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost.” And he promised to “transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.” Unfortunately the president’s scorecard on every single one of those bold pledges is pitiful. -- Niall Ferguson

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:21 PM | Your Say (3)

"Obsession" That Special Fragrance

This obsession with imagery, cute phrasing and perception
suggests that the real problem with the 2012 campaign is that it is all about nothing. It is an amusement park train running in circles; an enterprise for selling air. There is no record to run on; no actual workable policy to present. All it can offer is a series of soundbites touting vague promises and airy vistas. At rock bottom it is nothing but another attempt to re-elect Barack Obama. -- Belmont Club サ The Empty Sandwich

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:51 AM | Your Say (0)

The 2-Party System


Blind man carrying a paralysed man

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:43 AM | Your Say (3)

All in All It's All the Same

Because of the dread word “efficiency” (cheaper for everyone to use the same suppliers at the expense of being unique),
we’ve come to a point in our popular and consumer culture where uniformity isn’t just stifling innovation, it’s also making consumers number and dumber. When everything becomes so flattened-out, perma-pressed and rounded at the edges, all sense of aspiration is lost – even the oddly flat medals podia at the Olympics tried to make everyone a winner, offering little vertical differentiation between gold and bronze. -- Differentiate – or die - FT.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:16 AM | Your Say (0)

Jimmy Carter in a televised speech in 1977:

“We could use up all of the proven reserves of oil in the entire world by the end of the next decade.” -- Apocalypse Not: Here's Why You Shouldn't Worry About End Times

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:48 AM | Your Say (0)

No Orange Tips for Trainees


File under "They grow up so quickly:"An Afghan refugee boy poses with a plastic rifle as he and other children celebrate the Eid al-Fitr festival, which marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, in a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan, Aug. 20. -- - PhotoBlog

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:20 AM | Your Say (7)

The great progressive project of "the future:"

is a rotting stench that blows across the Atlantic. It is a formless dream that died. It is a future without a future. It is a million conferences and a billion regulations. It is a world where everything is known, where each atom is weighed and every man is found wanting. It is a closed room and a white bed on which to lay down and die on while the machines count off the seconds. -- Sultan Knish: The World of Tomorrow

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:03 AM | Your Say (0)

August 19, 2012

Tina Brown: Media Whore Flips

This week the slavish Obamallator Tina Brown turns on her tan mandate with that shameless hack Niall Ferguson blathering about Why Barack Obama Needs to Go - Newsweek and The Daily Beast

But the real question is:


When even the whores run away, your attractiveness has hit rock bottom.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:46 PM | Your Say (6)

The Final Insult


Pennsylvania road crew paints yellow line over dead raccoon

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:42 PM | Your Say (0)

Why are so many Jews liberal?

Despite their secularism, Jews may be the most religious ethnic group in the world.
The problem is that their religion is rarely Judaism; rather it is every "ism" of the Left. These include liberalism, socialism, feminism, Marxism and environmentalism. Jews involved in these movements believe in them with the same ideological fervor and same suspension of critical reason with which many religious people believe in their religion. -- Dennis Prager

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:33 AM | Your Say (4)

Maga’s Daughter by Andrew Wyeth (1966)


"It’s my wife, Betsy.... The colour of those cheeks under her coal black hair and that hat gives the portrait a real edge.
Really caught her. It’s more than a picture of a lovely looking woman. It’s blood rushing up. Portraits live or not on such fine lines! What makes this, is that odd, flat Quaker hat and the wonderful teardrop ribbons and those flushed cheeks. She could be a Quaker girl who’s just come in from riding….” -- Andrew Wyeth quoted at my daily art display

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:54 AM | Your Say (1)

Disney Yearns for Death

Disney, Marvel, Ike Perlmutter, and the Return of Otto von Bismarck
Disney is just inching up to canning Perlmutter, and going back to the old ways of PC platitudes, easy deals that make no waves with third parties (but yield little results money-wise), and a reliance on princess characters. That is not going to be enough. Disney will return to a general era of gay fabulousness and Oprah-like Black female leadership. But its ability to make money will evaporate.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:43 AM | Your Say (1)

Phase of the Moon, Phases of Venus, Aspect of Jupiter, Aspect of Saturn


Maria Clara Eimmart (1676-1707)

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:22 AM | Your Say (0)

From 2008. In case you started forgetting how insane liberals are:

"€œ[M]any spiritually advanced people I know (not coweringly religious, mind you, but deeply spiritual) identify Obama as a Lightworker,
that rare kind of attuned being who has the ability to lead us not merely to new foreign policies or health care plans or whatnot, but who can actually help usher in a new way of being on the planet, of relating and connecting and engaging with this bizarre earthly experiment. These kinds of people actually help us evolve. They are philosophers and peacemakers of a very high order, and they speak not just to reason or emotion, but to the soul. The unusual thing is, true Lightworkers almost never appear on such a brutal, spiritually demeaning stage as national politics. This is why Obama is so rare. And this why he is so often compared to Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., to those leaders in our culture whose stirring vibrations still resonate throughout our short history." -- Mark Morford, SF Gate Columnist, from a 2008 article titled: Is Obama an enlightened being?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:17 AM | Your Say (20)

August 18, 2012

Amazon.com: The Analects of Confucius (9780679722960): Arthur Waley: Books

It is in Pound's translation of 'The Great Digest' that we find the striking line: "If the root be in confusion, nothing will be well governed" (p.33). And who would want to miss a line that has such a powerful relevance to the world that we see around us today ?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:29 PM | Your Say (0)

Black Start


Not all generating plants are suitable for black-start capability.
Wind turbines are not suitable for black start because wind may not be available when needed. Wind turbines, mini-hydro, or micro-hydro plants, are often connected to induction generators which are incapable of providing power to re-energize the network. The black-start unit must also be stable when operated with the large reactive load of a long transmission line. Many high-voltage direct current converter stations cannot operate into a "dead" system, either, since they require commutation power from the system at the load end. -- - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:36 AM | Your Say (8)

temporary conditions

Marnie switched on the TV and surfed desultorily, sampling a reality show in which people were invited to queue for items they couldn’t afford to buy; then Ice Melt!, now in its fifteenth season;
before fixing with an impatient sigh on the second half of a documentary which traced the slow demise of the great Chinese manufacturing cities of the 2010s. Anna was reminded of the images of Detroit and Pripiat popular in the early days of the century, when decline and reversal–quick or slow, economic or catastrophic–had seemed like temporary conditions, anomalous and even a little exciting. -- | the m john harrison blog

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:10 AM | Your Say (0)

Noted while passing in the breakdown lane.


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:15 AM | Your Say (3)

Lying In Wait

Open Season on Progs: "I've not gone looking for it, but lately I'm struck by how many conservative ripostes appear on just about any lefty posting,
or newspaper article with commenting allowed. Eric Davidson's Twitter response is a prime example. It's getting harder for these mofos to lie, and I think much of that is due to Obama. He's so egregious a liar that a lot of people who were prone to accept as gospel any "official" voice are now willing to accept that media and democrats regularly lie from out their asses. -- Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:49 AM | Your Say (0)

Tonight Dies So That MSNBC May Live?

'The Tonight Show' Lays Off 20 Staffers And Host Jay Leno Takes Pay Cut To Save Jobs: Leno's Tonight Show is consistently the #1 late night talk show in both households and demographics, except for some anomalies when Leno does get beaten. And that's despite the fact that the network's primetime ratings have been dismal for many years.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:16 AM | Your Say (0)


In the climate debate, we hear a lot from those who think disaster is inexorable if not inevitable, and a lot from those who think it is all a hoax. We hardly ever allow the moderate “lukewarmers” a voice:
those who suspect that the net positive feedbacks from water vapor in the atmosphere are low, so that we face only 1 to 2 degrees Celsius of warming this century; that the Greenland ice sheet may melt but no faster than its current rate of less than 1 percent per century; that net increases in rainfall (and carbon dioxide concentration) may improve agricultural productivity; that ecosystems have survived sudden temperature lurches before; and that adaptation to gradual change may be both cheaper and less ecologically damaging than a rapid and brutal decision to give up fossil fuels cold turkey. -- Apocalypse Not: Here's Why You Shouldn't Worry About End Times | Wired Science | Wired.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:57 AM | Your Say (5)

August 17, 2012

Even when terrorists attack us, we don’t say that they are attacking us, we say that they are attacking “freedom.”

This thoughtless and unreal way of speaking is by now so firmly implanted in the American psyche, particularly in the psyche of conservatives, that it seems that nothing short of some unimaginable civilizational catastrophe can remove it. Which means that we are bound to keep empowering aliens and enemies, not to mention our own disordered selves, until they destroy us. -- Western civilization, brought down by slogans

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:26 PM | Your Say (1)

American Pi: US Population Hit 314 Million People


Just after 2:29 p.m. EDT today, the American population reached 314,159,265, or pi (3.14159265) times 100 million, according to the Census Bureau's population clock. -- - Neatorama

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:05 PM | Your Say (0)


On the n----rization of Obama, and the n----rization of America
"Now I have to confess that when I first read the story yesterday at a conservative site, and saw the word "€œn----rization,"€ I had to think about what the hidden, not-fully-spelled-out word was. I mean, if I had seen "€œn----r,"€ I would of course have known what it was. But "€œn----rization" was not exactly a familiar concept, you know what I'€™m talking about? I even counted the number of hyphens to make sure that the forbidden, unspelled word was the word that I thought it might be. Isn'€™t it ridiculous, that when reporting on the oh-so-pretentiously named Touré'€™s accusation against Romney, the news media are afraid to spell the very word that constituted the accusation, forcing readers to stop and figure out what the word is?"

[Inset: "IGGE" and Bob's yer uncle!]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:41 AM | Your Say (7)

And then they found a photo of Paul Ryan shirtless.


You’re welcome, America. But you should really be thanking TMZ. -- :: Naked DC

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:52 AM | Your Say (4)

Meteor: "Thank Goodness George Bush Isn’t President Anymore, Or We’d Have To Pay Attention To All These Dead Soldiers "

American service personnel in Afghanistan are dying at a rate of about one per day so far this year despite a drawdown of troops. -- The Rumford Meteor

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:08 AM | Your Say (2)

August 16, 2012

The Palletization of the Globe

Pallets are arguably as integral to globalization as containers.
For an invisible object, they are everywhere: There are said to be billions circulating through global supply chain (2 billion in the United States alone). Some 80 percent of all U.S. commerce is carried on pallets. So widespread is their use that they account for, according to one estimate, more than 46 percent of total U.S. hardwood lumber production. -- Pallets: The single most important object in the global economy

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:29 PM | Your Say (4)

Mountain Dew 0 Internet 1


Mountain Dew'€™s "€˜Dub the Dew"€™ Online Poll Goes Horribly Wrong "Hitler did nothing wrong,"€ "Diabeetus,"€ and "Gushing Granny"€ all topped the online rankings to name the new drink,
which Mountain Dew describes as "Classic Mtn Dew with green apple attitude."€ Other high ranking suggestions included "Soda"€ and "Sierra Mist,"€ but the online shenanigans did not stop there. In addition to simply bombarding the poll with hilariously unusable names, the pranksters even went so far as to hack into the site, adding a banner that read "Mtn Dew salutes the Israeli Mossad for demolishing 3 towers on 9/11!"€

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:34 PM | Your Say (1)

National Airborne Day

August 16, 1940 marked the first official Army parachute jump.

You Have a Dark Halo The light goes from red to green, and finally your instincts are jolted by all your years and you know what to do when lights turn green. Your mind tries one more time: STOP. There's a dozen ways to screw this up, and your only comfort comes from knowing that almost none of them will kill you. That's left to God, so you'd better hope He was there for pre-jump. -- The Dipso Chronicles

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:20 PM | Your Say (5)

Charles Koch: Why We Fight for Economic Freedom


If your struggling car company wants a government bailout, you’ll probably have to build the government’s car – even if it’s a car very few people want to buy.
Repeatedly asking for government help undermines the foundations of society by destroying initiative and responsibility. It is also a fatal blow to efficiency and corrupts the political process. When everyone gets something for nothing, soon no one will have anything, because no one will be producing anything. -- NewsMax

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:04 PM | Your Say (0)

What the magazine business learned from Elvis Presley's death


When Elvis Presley died, thirty-five years ago today, People was already America's most popular magazine. Amazingly, they didn't put him on the cover.
The issue that was on the stands when he died featured an interview with actor Tom Bosley, which gave them an excuse to go with a picture of the new Charlie's Angels... When John Lennon died, a mere three years later, everybody in the media had learned the lesson of Elvis Presley, that dead celebrities are actually more popular than living ones, and the magazine covers poured forth in an unending flow. -- David Hepworth

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:57 AM | Your Say (1)

The Story of Keep Calm and Carry On

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:58 AM | Your Say (0)

August 15, 2012

The grip of PC is getting conspicuously worse.

Youthist violence again troubles France
A few years ago such an article would have said, “Muslim youth,” “Arab youth,” or “immigrant youth.” Now it just says “youth,” “young people,” “conflicts between police and youth,” etc., with no reference to who the youth are. If today’s mainstream media had been in existence hundreds of years ago, they would have had stories like: “Youth Conquer Constantinople,” “Youth Raids Seize Europeans as Slaves,” “Young People Invade Rome, Sack Vatican,” “Young People’s Army Turned Back at the Gates of Vienna—Europe Saved!”

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:20 PM | Your Say (14)

Dear Cinnabon, My heart is sorry that it offended you and begs you to let it live. Sincerely, Gerard


In Which We Eat the Pizzabon from Cinnabon
While I certainly didn't expect to find any char or leopard spotting, I was surprised at how much cheese and grease was soaking the bottoms of these buns. Cooked Pizzabons wait under the sneeze guard in a tray that holds a dozen at a time. As they sit, that cheese is melting... that pepperoni is oozing grease... and it's got nowhere to go but straight down the sides of the dough until it all pools around the bottom.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:28 PM | Your Say (5)

Dark Knight Nostalgia


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:34 AM | Your Say (9)

Why? Why? Because it's Russia, that's why!

Look, take a revolution that puts the Communists in charge, follow that up with the compulsive wiping out of the intellectual classes in their millions by Stalin, add in the massive losses in WWII, and then pile on the slow seepage of brains to the West during the Cold War.... What have you got left? A nation of increasingly stupid people whose gene pool is about two inches deep.

And just in case you don't believe it, here's a traffic report!

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:30 AM | Your Say (13)

Biden in Toilet Waiting for the Flush

When you see headlines proclaiming "Obama campaign confident Biden can take on Ryan" you know that Hillary is warming up in the bullshit pen.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:02 AM | Your Say (9)

Korea: Is It 1989 Yet?

Then there is the real aristocracy of North Korea, the few percent of the population, in the form of families that have run the place since the late 1940s.
This group has gotten sloppy, as usually happens after a few generations, and is losing its grip. The police state in North Korea has always made it a prison even for the people running the place. The sharper ones have escaped to China, Russia or the West, but that is very difficult. The rulers are trapped, along with their increasingly unruly subjects. -- Strategy Page

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:00 AM | Your Say (0)

The Marching Morons #24,303


Artist ‘Borrows’ a Bag of Cumin, Counts Every Seed & Returns it
Back in 2009, Vienna-based artist Ovidiu Anton “borrowed” a 100 gram package of cumin from a store, counted every seed, marked the package with the total (24,303), and returned the package to the store.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:08 AM | Your Say (13)

Satan's Massage Tool


AKA Microplane Rocking Meat Tenderizer
"Pounding on tough cuts of steak with a regular meat tenderizer may help to improve the taste and texture, but if you don't feel like making a deafening racket while looking like a crazed barbarian, then check out this cool new Microplane Rocking Meat Tenderizer. Just rock this more civilized and ergonomic meat tenderizer back and forth over a steak and its sharp, etched 18/8 stainless steel blades quickly break down and soften the fibers to make even the least expensive steaks more tender and flavorful. It's sinister looking too, because it it, so please watch your hands."

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:10 AM | Your Say (1)

“To remove God is to eliminate the final restraint on human brutality” - Alister McGrath

This quotation from McGrath is a variant of the Dostoevsky quote translated as "Without God all things are permitted". The evidence that McGrath and Dostoevsky are correct is quite simple: The Twentieth Century. -- Bruce Charlton's Miscellany

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:46 AM | Your Say (2)

Putin on the Ritz: A "Secret" Palace for the Man Who Would Be Czar


On paper, this mansion in the village of Praskoveyevka, located on the northern coast of Russia's Black Sea, is owned by Indocopas, a mysterious company without a Web site or even a phone number. The real owner is rumored to be President Vladimir Putin. -- A Secret Putin Palace on Russia’s Black Sea - The Daily Beast

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:54 AM | Your Say (1)

August 14, 2012

Romney to O-Man: Take your racist rants and Biden back to Chicago

"America is one Nation under God. American history has been a story of the many becoming one – uniting to preserve liberty, uniting to build the greatest economy in the world, uniting to save the world from unspeakable darkness.

Everywhere I go in America there are monuments that list those who have given their lives. There is no mention of their race, their party affiliation or what they did for a living. They lived and died under a single flag fighting for a single purpose. They pledged allegiance to the United States of America. So, Mr. President, take your campaign of division and anger and hate back to Chicago and let us get about rebuilding and reuniting America." -- Mitt Romney’s right hook at Chillicothe. | RedState


Illo at Hope and Change

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:51 PM | Your Say (5)

The Looters

To vote for Obama after years of grotesque economic mismanagement that has no precedent in history, that exceeds the worst actions of Andrew Jackson or Ulysses S. Grant, is not the instinct of an American,
but a selfish greedy looter scrambling to grab a few dinner rolls off the tray while the ship is going down. There is no policy justification for voting for a man with the worst economic and foreign policy record in the country's history. There is no American justification for voting for him. Only the UnAmerican motivation of carving up a dying country into group fiefdoms privileging identity politics over the common good. -- Daniel Greenfield

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:31 PM | Your Say (1)

File Under: Dog, Should Not Happen To


Little costumes for your pooch who is, sadly, under the thumb of a tyrant.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:03 PM | Your Say (2)

Comment of the Day: Progressive Child Abuse

John Fleming in a comment to Side-Lines: "What's so bad?...." notes:
There is a significant segment of our society that thinks it should be a secured right to perform cultural experiments upon your own children, that is to say, you are perfectly within your rights to ignore the broad consensus of what is considered to be successful and moral child-rearing, and provide an environment for your children that pleases yourselves. This societal segment even goes so far as to equate exercise of your rights with moral behavior. I offer as proof, the latter-day vociferous defense of same-gender couples raising children.
The choice these days of what is allowed to be visited upon the child, and what is beyond the pale, seems arbitrary, and definitely not always grounded in the duty of every parent to provide for a child's fair head start to life's race.
Do be unsparing, though, in truthfully documenting the results of such alternative behavior. For we learn by examples. Stories of success, and stories of heart-wrenching tragedy, keep us on the straight and narrow.
Everybody starts out with a passel of problems. Some people just get jerks for parents. To be human is to rise above the mud and create beauty. The jerks will get to explain themselves to St. Peter, and I reckon that conversation won't go very well.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:58 PM | Your Say (7)

Why are we not “sitting in” at the local television stations demanding a voice and participation in the definitions? Too extreme?

Sultan Knish has a very good political primer on the execrable notion of “moderate” positions.
The idea being that, standing in the middle of a ship heading in a straight line to the Left does not make you “moderate,” it makes you stupid. -- Embracing Your Inner Extremist | Primordial Slack

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:10 PM | Your Say (1)

"What's so bad?...." [Bumped] [+]


Nothing. Unless you talk about those desires, or act on them, and are willing to accept the ridicule.
Because, laws aside, it's abnormal behavior; unacceptable by social norms. Social norms are necessary in any society; guidelines and silent agreements which allow lots of people to live together in some harmony. Accommodating people like Alex, and certainly Alex's parent, means imposing on everyone a requirement to accept their behavior as being perfectly normal, or face a political punishment. We call this political correctness, and it's a cancer. PC makes people want to throw other people who work for the New York Times down a volcano. Someday, given the opportunity, they probably will. --Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:55 PM | Your Say (27)

Modern Eco Decor [Bumped]


Tree Stump Side Table

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:44 PM | Your Say (10)

Vogue Growth Spurt of Nearly 50!


Things are looking up for the Fashion elite!: "In 2011, the paid circulation of Vogue Paris in France was 121,103, up from 121,055 in 2010." -- A New Look for French Vogue - Fashion Memo Pad - Media - WWD.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:35 PM | Your Say (0)

What The Fluke Is This Arch Made Of?

Nagasaki 1945, after the atomic bomb
Nagasaki 2011, following earthquake and tsunami

We need a government-funded program to send a team of people's scientists to Japan and find out what this arch is made of. Once we get hold of this miracle, Obama's investments in alternative technologies will be vindicated, helping him to defeat the knuckle-dragging troglodytes Romney and Ryan in the coming election. -- Peoples Cube

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:11 PM | Your Say (4)

Shaking in Their Tingling Two-Shoes


Admit It, I Scare The Ever-Loving Shit Out Of You, Don't I? by Paul Ryan It’s okay to admit it. You’re frightened to death of me.
It might actually be healthy for you to face your fears now rather than later, when Mitt and I are leading by a few points in the polls and it looks like this thing might end badly for you. Face it: I’m not some catastrophe waiting to happen, like a Sarah Palin or a Dan Quayle. On the contrary, you have the exact opposite fear. I’m a solid, competent, some might say exceptional, politician. Did you get nervous when you read that last sentence? Is it because you know in your heart of hearts that it’s 100 percent true? Is it because, even if you strongly disagree with my beliefs on Medicare, Social Security, women’s rights, and marriage equality, you know my talent as a speaker and my well-thought-out approach to these issues—no matter how radical and convoluted you find them—might just be enough to win over independent voters?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:32 PM | Your Say (0)

“Everyone is afraid of retaliation and retribution."

"We recently had an event with a hundred small bankers here, and 85 percent of them said they can’t challenge the regulation because of the potential retribution. That’s a terrible thing. Okay? This is not the Soviet Union. This is the United States of America. That’s what I remember. Guess what,” he says, almost shouting now. “It’s a free. Fucking. Country.” -- 122 Minutes With Jamie Dimon: The JPMorgan Chase CEO is really, really, really sorry. Except when he’s not. [HT: Rodger]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:03 AM | Your Say (0)

Of Course. Why did it take so long?


Ham Dogger - Makes Perfect Hot Dog Shaped Hamburger Patties - The Green Head

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:00 AM | Your Say (5)

Modern Education

Freeport Reassures Parents That Teacher That Pleaded No Contest To Threatening To Shoot Their Kids Will Only Be Allowed To Hang Around The School All Day, Angry And With Little To Do, And May Only Grade Papers Alone On The Roof Occasionally | The Rumford Meteor

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:18 AM | Your Say (0)

August 13, 2012

The Last Man to Walk on the Moon


Harrison Schmitt Apollo 17, December 11-14, 1972 | The twelfth and last man to set foot on the moon,
Schmitt is the only one of the dozen not to have been at some point a member of the US Armed Forces. He was the only scientist-astronaut to walk on the lunar surface, receiving a Phd from Harvard in 1964 for his work on the subject of geology. -- The Men who Walked on the Moon ~ Kuriositas

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:42 PM | Your Say (8)

The winner of the 2012 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest is Cathy Bryant of Manchester, England.

"As he told her that he loved her she gazed into his eyes, wondering, as she noted the infestation of eyelash mites, the tiny deodicids burrowing into his follicles to eat the greasy sebum therein, each female laying up to 25 eggs in a single follicle, causing inflammation, whether the eyes are truly the windows of the soul; and, if so, his soul needed regrouting." -- 2012 Contest Winners サ The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:31 PM | Your Say (3)

Moving toward feudalism

In feudal times people paid what they had to to the local knights, who undertook to defend them from the barbarians.
In those times the barbarians came from outside the city gates, although I expect they had some inside also. In our case we are raising cultures of barbarians, some in the cities, some in California’s Central Valley. So we pay $150,000 to $300,000 a year with full pensions after 20 years to police officers, the new Blue Knights. Knighthood was never hereditary although the chance to become a knight was much higher for the children of knights than for the peasantry, and over time the social classes became something like a caste system. Could we be going that way in the US? -- Jerry Pournelle

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:25 PM | Your Say (3)

“As we know it”

The words "eliminate Medicare"€ will be said with great emphasis, and the phrase "as we know it" will be much softer in volume and spoken a lot quicker. The idea is to have the listener focus in fear on the first phrase, with the second as an almost meaningless afterthought. What will be left out? Oh, just about everything: the fact that Medicare "as we know it"€ is already unsustainable, the fact that Medicare "as we know it"€ would also be "€œeliminated" by Obamacare. -- neo-neocon Eliminating Medicare as we know it

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:29 AM | Your Say (0)

"This is a pre-revolutionary symptom."

A corrupt, decadent elite that is manifestly incompetent at nearly everything.
An elite that furthermore learns nothing, because no one in the elite is never punished, terribly, for failure. An elite, furthermore, that can’t see the systematic failure and work to change it, and adapt to the failure. -- Standard Chartered and the Fall of the West | whiskeysplace

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:00 AM | Your Say (1)

Sound Familiar?

Imagine a conflict in which each side tries to control the leadership of rival nations;
where enemy agents impersonate, or sometimes recruit members of the armed and police forces of your own state; where hostile forces can wipe out the bank accounts of thousands or even millions of individuals. Think of a world in which there is no sanctuary, where no flight or concealment is possible. A reality in which millions of distributed cameras, augmented by intercepted emails, cell phone video, and imagery make it impossible to lose one self in a crowd. It will be a world without front lines, without a clearly identifiable friend or foe. This, and terrorism too. Conceive of living in such a universe; and realize that perhaps you may be living in it already. -- Belmont Club サ The New Total War

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:37 AM | Your Say (0)

Fewer Tears. Many, Many More Bullets

By 1993, the year of the infamous Rose Garden handshake, 45 Israelis had been killed and 34 injured in Muslim terrorist attacks.
A year after the handshake, the toll stood at 109 Israelis dead and 456 wounded. By 2002, the year that Israel's patience finally broke and Sharon sent forces storming into Arafat's compound, the numbers for that year were a horrifying 451 dead and 2,348 wounded. Today, some 40 years after that September in Munich and 19 years after the even worse tragedy of that September in Washington D.C., with over 1,500 dead since that fatal handshake, there have been rivers of blood and tears. And a shortage of bullets. -- Sultan Knish a blog by Daniel Greenfield

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:04 AM | Your Say (2)

August 12, 2012

"It's not that [Romney] can't throw a haymaker. He's proven that he can."

It's just that it isn't in his nature, and he doesn't have the appetite for a continuous loop of Kimbo Slice in the backyard.
And Obama the Perpetually Aggrieved certainly knows how to play the poor little colored boy beaten up at the bus stop. Having said that, I think Romney will do alright. That muddling middle of the electorate, those who don't care for bloody political wars, will ultimately lean toward the guy without the brass knuckles on. People who put bicycle helmets on tough little boys built like pieces of lighter knot don't like internicine warfare. -- Velociworld: Obama, the Merciless

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:57 PM | Your Say (0)

August 11, 2012

Visit Historic Rumford, Maine, Now That There's Something to See

Rumford Men, Baffled And Agitated By Cantilevered Horseshoe Throw, Begin To Bang Bleached Femurs On The Ground While Also Sprach Zarathustra Plays | The Rumford Meteor RUMFORD — A local man pitched himself into horseshoe-tossing history Monday night when his ringer stopped in midair on an iron stake. Horseshoe players told Mark Gaudet of Rumford they’d never seen anything in four decades of playing like his gravity-defying ringer. “It was just one of them once-in-a-lifetime shots, really,” Gaudet said Wednesday.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:33 PM | Your Say (0)

Trends Don't Make a Matriarchy

Statistics showing the rise of women and fall of men are sobering, but Rosin is really only pointing out trends
— when and if and how they translate into real-world power is vague. And as she concedes, women account for only 3 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs, 17 percent of members of Congress, and 20 of the 180 heads of state. Matriarchy? Really? No. The world's leading exporter of absurdity has shown the way: Women in Saudi Arabia earn more than half of all undergraduate and doctoral degrees — then they have to be driven to their jobs. -- Stephen Marche on the Contempt of Women

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:28 PM | Your Say (3)

White Guy Reminds You, "This is a special time"

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:36 AM | Your Say (7)


It is very, very, very important that Obama wins a second term this fall, because if He can’t do that, [blank]. What’s [blank]? You figure out what that is, on Planet Obamafan…you drop me a line, okay? Because I’m completely lost here. -- House of Eratosthenes

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:09 AM | Your Say (2)

August 10, 2012

I love the smell of a napalmed New York Times in the morning.


Combine a massively disruptive technology (the Internet), a weakened company (The New York Times Co.), and a brutal recession, and what you get is a kind of slow-motion fire-sale.
First went the real estate. Then went the NYT’s stake in the Boston Red Sox and NESN (a regional sports cable network). Then went 16 regional newspapers for $143 million. Next (probably) goes About.com, which the NYT purchased for $410 million years ago and is now desperate to sell for $270 million. -- Via Meadia

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:49 PM | Your Say (7)

You Effing Snob!

Do you feel like you have to dumb down your work for public discourse? Head of the CERN laboraties, Rolf-Dieter Heuer :
That would be the wrong approach. But we have to differentiate between scientific work and the presentation of our work and results to the public. We owe it to the public that we communicate well: our work is interesting, important for the progress of science, and often publicly funded as well. The thing to keep in mind is the right order: first, we inform our colleagues in the scientific community, and then we find a language that is suitable for the general public and the media." -- The European Magazine - The Opinion Magazine

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:20 AM | Your Say (7)

Now it can be told.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, despite his lofty position in the United States Senate and despite being married to a very nice woman, has been having sex with a cow for at least three months, maybe more.
How he met the cow I cannot say, as it would compromise extremely sensitive sources. Where he met her? Again, my lips are sealed. Nonetheless, it is time for Senator Reid to come clean about that cow. -- The American Spectator : Of Democrats and Distractions

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:10 AM | Your Say (4)

In 1988, Michael Dukakis famously said, “This election is not about ideology; it’s about competence.” He lost.

If Republicans want to win, Obama’s deeply revealing, teleprompter-free you-didn’t-build-that confession of faith needs to be hung around his neck until Election Day.
The third consecutive summer-of-recovery-that-never-came is attributable not just to Obama being in over his head but, even more important, to what’s in his head: a government-centered vision of the economy and society, and the policies that flow from it. -- The case against reelection - The Washington Post

The catch here is, of course, "If Republicans want to win..." Never forget the greatest political truth of the 21st century:

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:13 AM | Your Say (3)

We have a President in charge right now,

who writes to me several times a week begging for three dollars.
But He cannot explain why He should win His re-election. He cannot form a list of bullet points, or even a single bullet point, to explain how that helps anyone but Him, and, I suppose, the people who directly benefit from His victory. He’s in charge of America but He cannot explain why He is good for America. -- House of Eratosthenes

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:12 AM | Your Say (0)

August 9, 2012



Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:03 PM | Your Say (0)

"I began my career in the Foreign Service during the Carter presidency, and ended it during the Obama presidency: two horrific bookends."

The DiploMad 2.0: Obama and the Damage Done:
It is now considered by the majority of the media and the other honking "intellectual" geese as off-limits to question Obama's life, his claimed achievements, or note the contradictions in what he has said and what he says now. Free speech is no longer so free. If you question the President, you are a racist, insane, a danger to democracy, hate the poor or all of the aforementioned. If you still hold the same views that he purported to hold up to a few weeks ago, e.g., the traditional definition of marriage, and failed to "evolve" when he did, then you are a hopeless homophobe; your business should be banned and ruined, and your employees bullied. This is not unlike Orwell's 1984, "We have never been at war with Eastasia . . . " You must keep up with the changes in Dear Leader's views. He will tell you when you can favor gay marriage; when you can raise closing Guantanamo; when the war will end; when the deficit must be cut with more spending. New Think is here.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:48 PM | Your Say (1)

It’s been quite a few hours since Obama

has shut something down, given something away, or broken some promise. It’s quiet . . . too quiet.  Maybe it's time for him to create something again -- another agency. Yeah, that's it. I predict another Obama-mandated Agency For The Totally Useless Purpose of Getting Friends'€™ Kids On the Government Teat. -- Predictions. Feel free to join in. | Primordial Slack

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:23 PM | Your Say (1)

The Dubious Third World Kid


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:53 PM | Your Say (5)

Why Are Jim Thorpe’s Olympic Records Still Not Recognized?


Then came the very last event, the 1,500-meter run. The metric mile was a leg-burning monster that came after nine other events over two days.
And he was still in mismatched shoes. Thorpe left cinders in the faces of his competitors. He ran it in 4 minutes 40.1 seconds. Faster than anyone in 1948. Faster than anyone in 1952. Faster than anyone in 1960 — when he would have beaten Rafer Johnson by nine seconds. No Olympic decathlete, in fact, could beat Thorpe’s time until 1972. As Neely Tucker of the Washington Post pointed out, even today’s reigning gold medalist in the decathlon, Bryan Clay, would beat Thorpe by only a second. -- Smithsonian Magazine

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:58 PM | Your Say (5)

Off to Buy a Box or Two


In an election year filled with secret campaign money, the Scotts Miracle-Gro Company has made the unlikely choice to go public with a big political donation.
The Ohio-based company, familiar as the producer of a ubiquitous plant fertilizer, is now a political player, donating $200,000 in June to the Restore Our Future super PAC supporting Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. -- - The Washington Post

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:28 AM | Your Say (8)

Bringing It All Back Home

Sipsey Street Irregulars: Bringing the War Back Home. "Full Spectrum Operations in the Homeland": Getting the military to start preparing for the violent repression of its own citizenry. US Army "deep thinker" creates an "enemy" out of the Tea Parties & "extremist militias." "Red Teaming" from an Ignorance-Inspired Faulty Premise.
As ridiculous and faulty-premised as Benson's article is, we must take it seriously. At least some Pentagon planners are considering how to wage "anti-insurrectionary" operations against that class of folks that Obama sneeringly referred to as "the bitter clingers." That such military tyranny would be both a violation of their Constitutional oaths and treason seems not bother Benson and his ilk a whit. Thus, if the Pentagon is going to consider us potential enemies, we must give some thought to the application of Fourth Generation Warfare techniques in righteous self-defense against tyranny.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:10 AM | Your Say (4)

"Grave Torpedoes."


Borrowing Civil War technology, Howell's device weighed 8-pounds and carried a charge of more than .75-pound of black powder ignited by a percussion cap.
Buried atop the coffin with a protective plate above the torpedo, if disturbed the metal plate would help serve as a shape charge directed right at the would-be grave robber. An advertisement for the weapon declared that it would allow one to, “sleep well sweet angel, let no fears of ghouls disturb thy rest, for above thy shrouded form lies a torpedo, ready to make minced meat of anyone who attempts to convey you to the pickling vat.” -- Cemetery Guns and Grave Torpedoes - Gun News at Guns.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:49 AM | Your Say (2)

CBO: Obamacare Will Leave 30 Million Uninsured

“CBO and JCT [Joint Committee on Taxation] now estimate that the ACA,
in comparison with prior law before the enactment of the ACA, will reduce the number of nonelderly people without health insurance coverage by 14 million in 2014 and by 29 million or 30 million in the latter part of the coming decade, leaving 30 million nonelderly residents uninsured by the end of the period.” -- | CNSNews.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:35 AM | Your Say (8)

Fear and Shame on the Campaign Trail

They [mainstream journalists] have seen the same things we all have and know that the economy (the very heart of America) is failing.
And they know deep down that they are responsible for some of it, because they bought and promoted Barack Obama as if he were a messiah without the slightest bit of vetting. Obama was anointed, not elected. To this day no one knows who he is, possibly even Obama himself.... Ideology is but a pretentious cover for rage. So no wonder they behave as a shrill gang, banging metal drums like lost characters out of Gunter Grass, “Romney bad and rich! Romney bad and rich! Romney bad and rich!” ad tedium, ad nauseum, as if they were on David Axelrod’s payroll. And in a sense they are. -- Roger L. Simon サ

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:26 AM | Your Say (0)

The New York Times has long been flirting with bankruptcy. Fox News is printing money.

The Mind of the Mainstream Media:
Having lost touch with their rational faculties [Mainstream Journalists] are left with unprocessed emotions, their hatred, their envy, and their spleen. They believe that Fox News is crassly biased; they become crassly biased. They believe that Fox News distorts the facts; they distort the facts. They believe that Fox News preys on ignorance; they prey on ignorance.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:24 AM | Your Say (0)

How a Fake Erotic Fiction eBook Hit the Top 5 of iTunes


The Diamond Club is an erotic fiction book that reached as high as #4 on the iTunes paid eBooks list just behind the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy.
It's an amazing accomplishment as it's only been on sale for three days. And even more amazing since it's a fake book. -- Gizmodo

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:59 AM | Your Say (1)

True or Font?


The conscious awareness of Comic Sans promotes — at least among some people — contempt and summary dismissal.
But is there a font that promotes, engenders a belief that a sentence is true? Or at least nudges us in that direction? And indeed there is. It is Baskerville. -- Hear, All Ye People; Hearken, O Earth - NYTimes.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:04 AM | Your Say (0)

The Voices in Pelosi's Head


"And then I realized Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, Alice Paul, Sojourner Truth, you name it, they were all in that chair, they were," said Pelosi. "More than I named and I could hear them say: 'At last we have a seat at the table.' And then they were gone." -- Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:29 AM | Your Say (4)

Too Much of a Muchness

The problem we're facing now is that the left has too much power,
has been able to accomplish far too much without opposition, and dominates culture too greatly. In order to get back to where we need to be, a great deal needs to be rolled back. Compromise must always be in how much the left gives up, not how much both sides give, because otherwise you're moving the wrong direction still. Extremists and radicals are those who want more of what we have now, not less. -- Word Around the Net: A CONSERVATIVE CHRISTIAN AMERICA

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:28 AM | Your Say (0)

August 8, 2012

Human capability peaked before 1975 and has since declined

This may sound bizarre or just plain false, but the argument is simple.
That landing of men on the moon and bringing them back alive was the supreme achievement of human capability, the most difficult problem ever solved by humans. 40 years ago we could do it – repeatedly – but since then we have *not* been to the moon, and I suggest the real reason we have not been to the moon since 1972 is that we cannot any longer do it. Humans have lost the capability. -- Bruce Charlton

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:41 PM | Your Say (8)

Obama: 'My lady don't get paid on her stroll.'


Obama Whines Wife Should Be Paid For Being First Lady…
The soon-to-be former President neglected to remind this same group of women that Michelle Obama has a staff of over 30 under her direction, wears outfits costing tens of thousands of dollars, goes on vacations costing hundreds of thousands of dollars, and remains quite fond of throwing lavish White House dinners costing millions of dollars each year.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:14 PM | Your Say (5)

The Second American Civil War [Bumped]


There's peace--for a couple days. And then someone snipes a PAO while he's live on CNN; his brains ruin Anderson Cooper's wardrobe. There's a vigorous house-to-house sweep in the immediate area that is NOT a model of respect for such minor things as habeas corpus and the Fourth Amendment.
And then someone detonates a VBIED outside Fifth Army Headquarters. And then the Air Force flies a "Protective Reaction Strike" against "teabagger insurgents." Before we know it, we have Fallujah 2: Electric Boogaloo What then? When the government starts shooting at its own citizenry, all bets are off. There's a reason totalitarian regimes collapse so quickly once an insurrection starts--after a while, the citizenry realizes that the government simply doesn't have enough troops to smash enough heads fast enough to defeat the entire populace. We have even fewer head-bashers available; and some of them might support the intended head-bashees instead of the political elites... Where does it end? What happens when Yemassie revolts? What happens when revolt spreads to North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma... -- Full Spectrum Operations in the Homeland: A “Vision” of the Future | Small Wars Journal

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 3:58 PM | Your Say (16)

The Rules of the "Big Lie"

Obama follows the [Hitler's] rules as well, elucidated in a US intelligence profile of Hitler written during the war:
[Hitler's] primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it. -- neo-neocon サ Blog Archive サ Politics: lies and the lying liars

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Guns on the House!

A Harvard study claims that [the 'responsibility to protect' program ]
has unleashed thousands of weapons upon the innocent. “Abandoned weapons that were once part of toppled dictator Moamer Kadhafi’s arsenal pose an ongoing and serious threat to civilians in Libya, warned a report published by Harvard University on Thursday.”.... An administration which pursues gun-control at home in the name of public safety has so far succeeded in unleashing thousands of weapons in Mexico, Libya and now Syria, an irony only matched by Rudy Giuliani’s observation that the idea that Obama is a friend of the Jewish state to be “the biggest joke” he’s ever heard. -- Belmont Club » Eyes Both Closed

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January 1709


The remarkable cold lingered in Europe for weeks.
Lakes, rivers, and the sea froze over, and the soil solidified a meter deep. The cold cracked open trees, crushed the life out of livestock huddling in stables, and made travel a treacherous undertaking. It was the coldest winter in the past 500 years, and one of the coldest moments in a larger global phenomenon known as the Little Ice Age. Likely causes include volcanic activity, oceanic currents, and/or reforestation due to Black-Death-induced population decline. It is nearly certain, however, that it has something to do with the unusually low number of sunspots that appeared at that time, a phenomenon referred to as the Maunder minimum. -- Better Call Sol • Damn Interesting

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This Just In: First Color Picture from Mars

Transmitted by Sensing @ Sense of Events

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Humor Breakthough: All Blonde jokes are "Obama Supporter" jokes

Did you hear about the two Obama Supporters who froze to death in a drive-in movie?

They had gone to see 'Closed for the Winter.' [Rimshot!]

Found by Rick @ Brutally Honest: Obama supporters are the best!!!

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Black America: "Now he tells us."

Obama: 'I'm not the president of black America' - POLITICO.com

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And... when your country is in total collapse that's the time to get serious about illegals

Greece's purge on illegal immigrants: Thousands are rounded up ready for deportation.

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To the left, success has become the Mark of Cain.

Where success once used to be proof of good character, the balance has shifted and it is now proof of bad character.
The left blames all disparities on injustice. If A has less than B, then B has somehow discriminated against A. All that’s left is for the sociologists and critical race theorists to plug in the variables, write their papers and explain the mechanism for the injustice and how it can be remedied through centralized redistribution. -- Israel’s ‘You Built It’ Culture | FrontPage Magazine

The reason the left feels this way about success is that their own success
has been largely based on stealing and other forms of injustice. Consider the Obamas.... Obama’s own success is based on lies, special favors, and no real achievement. So it makes sense that he thinks that the same is true of everyone else. -- How the left portrays good as bad; and why blacks are the most devoted leftists

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Where does spiritual autism come from?

In part, from simple ignorance (what Musil called "honest stupidity," that is, man's natural inability to comprehend the sacred in its fullness, compounded by general societal ignorance and a lack of religious tradition).
In part, from sin, which deadens the conscience and weakens man's spiritual faculties. And in part from an intentionally disordered will: from a will to disbelieve. This will to disbelieve leads man to folly, especially when confronted with flatly incontrovertible rational arguments for, say, the instance of God: it leads him to believe that the universe is disorderly, that anything can come from nothing anywhere and at any time, that reality itself is socially constructed, that there is no necessary connection between effect and cause, that one man is not necessarily any more like another man than a starfish is to a skyscraper, and so on. It is a temptation, as old and as evil as the serpent that inspired it. -- On Spiritual Autism

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February 2009 Promise: Obama vows to cut huge deficit in half

2/22/2009 "President Obama will announce Monday that he plans to cut the nation’s projected annual deficit in half by the end of his first term, a senior administration official said Saturday." -- - Mike Allen - POLITICO.com

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Nancy Pelosi Says She Probably Won't Watch Romney Sex Tape

Speaking to reporters outside a D.C. area Botox center, Pelosi said,
“I just can’t imagine what Governor Romney’s supporters must be going through right now. First the taxes and now a sex tape? What do they tell their children? I do know his father must be heartbroken. The depth of his shame must be so difficult for him. Like Senator Reid, I just want Governor Romney’s father to have some peace.” -- Daily Rash

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August 7, 2012

Was Danielle Steel busy that year?

In 2009, at a humid dinner filled with our culture’s leading personages, [Gore Vidal] was presented with the lifetime National Book Award for his Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. Was Danielle Steel busy that year?
The Personages greeted him with a prolonged and affectionate standing ovation, a favor he returned by talking about himself, alternately cranky and befuddled, for nearly an hour. He figured no one would dare show signs of boredom as he lulled them inexorably into catalepsy, and he was right. The Personages had been programmed for reverence. -- Andrew Ferguson | The Weekly Standard

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From Iraq To Lincoln Center, A Marine’s Return To Ballet


A few years after graduation, my goal of landing a spot in a full-time ballet company
still seemed unattainable and I decided to make a drastic change of direction. I enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, to serve my country and get an education, and became a machine gunner and fire-team leader. -- - The Daily Beast

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Sir. John Keegan 1934 – 2012


He was a master of the personal voice, but in such a way that was never chatty or self-indulgent.
It never seemed to bother him that his unapologetic pro-Americanism, support for the idea of the Vietnam and Iraqi wars, and general British conservatism might imperil his literary career — perhaps because he judged rightly that his historical acumen, innate humanity, fairness toward historical figures, and above-the-fray temperament made him exempt from ideological vendettas. --Victor Hanson, Remembering the Dead, from Selma

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CCProse: Free Audio Books

"The cause of America is in a great measure the cause of all mankind."

Hundreds of books freely available at the YouTube channel CC Prose Audiobooks.
CC Prose is dedicated to making classic literature accessible to people around the world. By combining high quality audio, large print text, synchronized closed captions, and machine translations in multiple languages; we provide something for everyone.

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August 6, 2012

Science or Circus?


Would You Rather Know the Origin of Life or Watch People Run Faster Than Others?

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UnSelling Points


In 1935, Northern Tissue advertised its toilet paper to be "splinter-free."
Apparently, early production techniques managed to embed splinters in the paper. Three cheers for innovation! And finally, in 1942, two-ply toilet paper was introduced in St. Andrew's Paper Mill in the UK. An odd development considering wartime austerity and rationing. Speaking of rationing, the Virtual Toilet Paper Museum reports that the first toilet paper shortage in the US took place in 1973. Presumably, it was overshadowed by the oil embargo. --Toilet Paper: A Brief and Sometimes Painful History

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:20 PM | Your Say (2)

Say What?


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:20 PM | Your Say (2)

Body Count - By Jay Nordlinger - The Corner - National Review Online

In my Impromptus of Thursday, I had a note on Fort Hood, saying that the killer there had managed to gun down 13. Several readers have written me to say that the number should really be 14. One of the soldiers, Francheska Velez, was pregnant. Her dying words were, “My baby, my baby.” For an Associated Press report on the matter, go here.

When I was coming of age, the phrase “meaningless blob of protoplasm” was in the air. At some point, President Clinton’s surgeon general said we needed to “get over this love affair with the fetus.” It seems very clear to me that pregnant mothers, when dying, don’t cry, “My meaningless blob of protoplasm, my meaningless blob of protoplasm.”

Is that too rough for you? So’s the subject.

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‘Perfect storm’ of black violence on ‘gays’

Black mob violence against “gay” people is a perfect storm of three secret worlds: Newspapers do not report the predators, victims do not report the crimes and being “gay” is “about the worst thing you can be in black culture,” CNN anchor Don Lemon told the New York Times. -- WND

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August 5, 2012

What happens when the money begins to run out?

In Russia, the question isn't merely academic. It's disturbingly real.
Predators expand in proportion to prey. An open system attracts predators who feed off it. We call this taxation, and it works fine, though with more for those at the top of the food chain than those at the bottom. The predators breed larger and larger numbers until they cease to understand that they need the prey to survive. That's when the predators start telling the prey, "You didn't build this." -- Daniel Greenfield

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Operations within American borders

Full Spectrum Operations in the Homeland: A "Vision"€ of the Future | Small Wars Journal
With Darlington under their control, militia members quickly move beyond the city limits to establish 'check points' -- in reality, something more like choke points -- on major transportation lines.  Traffic on I-95, the East Coast'€™s main north-south artery; I-20; and commercial and passenger rail lines are stopped and searched, allegedly for "illegal aliens" Citizens who complain are immediately detained.  Activists also collect "tolls"€ from drivers, ostensibly to maintain public schools and various city and county programs, but evidence suggests the money is actually going toward quickly increasing stores of heavy weapons and ammunition.  They also take over the town web site and use social media sites to get their message out unrestricted. 

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:33 PM | Your Say (10)

GM's Soccer to US!

Ann Barnhardt: "GM announced on Monday that it had purchased a sponsorship agreement with a British soccer team.
The players will wear little Chevrolet patches on their jerseys and Chevy will be the "official vehicle" of this soccer team. Do you want to guess how much GM, the same GM whose stock is trading at all-time lows, who is writing sub-prime car loans in a desperate bid to move inventory, is losing something like $100,000 per Chevy Volt, and still owes the taxpayers tens of billions of dollars is paying for this sponsorship deal? Go ahead. Guess how much GM just plopped down for a few jersey patches on a British soccer team." --> Manchester United to get $559 million in GM shirt sponsor deal

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:22 PM | Your Say (2)

Herbert Marcuse was right.

Washington Diarist: A Saint In The City | The New Republic

There will be no revolution in America. This society will contain its contradictions without resolving them; it will absorb opposition and reward it; it will transform dissent into culture and commerce. Marcuse’s mistake was in believing that this is bad news. It is good news, because we will be spared the agonies of political purifications. But it is also comic, as protest songs become entertainment for the rich, and Bruce Springsteen the idol of the elite. The New Yorker clinches it: he is the least dangerous man in America. “With all the unrest in the world,” as Tony Curtis once said to Marilyn Monroe, “I don’t think anyone should have a yacht that sleeps more than twelve.”

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The Boss is a Queen

The musical decline of Bruce Springsteen has been obvious for decades. The sanctimony, the grandiosity, the utterly formulaic monumentality; the witlessness;
the tiresome recycling of those anthemic figures, each time more preposterously distended; the disappearance of intimacy and the rejection of softness. And the sexlessness: Remnick adores Springsteen for his “flagrant exertion,” which he finds deeply sensual, comparing him to James Brown, but Brown’s shocking intensity, his gaudy stamina, his sea of sweat, was about, well, fucking, whereas Springsteen “wants his audience to leave the arena, as he commands them, ‘with your hands hurting, your feet hurting, your back hurting, your voice sore, and your sexual organs stimulated!’”, which is how you talk dirty at Whole Foods. -- Washington Diarist: A Saint In The City | The New Republic

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"One will readily agree that any army which does not train to use all the weapons,"

all the means and methods of warfare that the enemy possesses, or may possess, is behaving in an unwise or even criminal manner.
This applies to politics even more than it does to the art of war. In politics it is even harder to know in advance which methods of struggle will be applicable and to our advantage in certain future conditions. Unless we learn to apply all the methods of struggle, we may suffer grave and sometimes even decisive defeat, if changes beyond our control in the position of the other classes bring to the forefront a form of activity in which we are especially weak. If, however, we learn to use all the methods of struggle, victory will be certain, because we represent the interests of the really foremost and really revolutionary class, even if circumstances do not permit us to make use of weapons that are most dangerous to the enemy, weapons that deal the swiftest mortal blows. -- Lenin’s Left-Wing Communism: an Infantile Disorder

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:19 PM | Your Say (1)

Whenever the concluding phrase of a New York Times op-ed column is “if we do it right,”

you know you have arrived in Thomas Friedman territory.
Has there ever been anyone who knows so much better than everyone else how to do things right than Tom Friedman? Not even Walter Cronkite was this all-knowing, and lots of Enlightened People wanted him to be president. -- Green Weenie of the Week: Thomas Friedman | Power Line

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 11:36 AM | Your Say (0)

Ladies! Now Enjoy a Face Lift Without Surgery!


"Just slip the Facial Lift At Once into your mouth once a day for three minutes and you will feel the electric buzzing work on your cheeks, chin, lips, mouth and even nose.
The pulsing will come in four different levels of strength and in a complete 360-degree spread, pushing and working on your facial muscles little by little every time. Not only will this give your face a boost "at once", exercise and training couldn't be easier than with this gadget. All you do is put on the mouth cover, pop it in your mouth and it does the hard work for you! To use: Put the mouth cover on. Place the tip between your lips (without touching teeth). Turn it on and let go of your hand " -- Japan Trend Shop

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:52 AM | Your Say (3)

The Catastrophe of Second Class Mail


The byzantine complexity of the second-class mail rate structure led, in the case of larger businesses at least,
to the hiring of specialists just to deal with the post office. Smaller businesses sometimes had to hire consultants to do the work of keeping up with the glass bead game artists at the USPS. So gratuitous complexity sired more gratuitous complexity, more transactional costs, and the creation of vested interests on the part of those whose jobs depended on all this. Guess who ultimately has been paying the tab? We have. If we have a cousin or a friend whose business depends on printing this junk, we may note the economic value of the arrangement. But it’s still junk. If you’re looking for a below-the-radar example of the logic of collective interests at work, it would be harder to find a more pristine example.... And, although it is uncomfortable to have to say this, a rather large percentage of these employees in urban areas were minority hires, as the growth of post office complexity dovetailed with affirmative action programs inside the federal government. -- How to Fix the U.S. Postal Service

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Tru Dat


Via Weekend Digest :: Naked DC

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August 4, 2012

Instapundit sez:


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:16 PM | Your Say (0)

Tweet, Tweet, Twee

Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:55 PM | Your Say (0)

Translation: "I don't really need to carry Pennsylvania after all."

Obama Backs Penn State Sanctions - ABC News

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"Smell that mildew?"

If you've got it, you didn't get there on your own. Some sporulating mold did it, most likely Stachybotrys chartarum. There was a colony of that great American slime mold somewhere in your house.
Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American ecosystem that we have that allowed your sponge to becoming a thriving, pungent wad of suppurating microfungus. Government spending on cellulosic sponge producton was there. If you’ve got a moldy UnmbrellaSponge -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. Sponge-based accessory storage technology didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that companies that build umbrella stands with sponges capable of hosting mold colonies could make money off the Internet.-- B Lewis on Side-Lines: Of Course. Why did it take so long?

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:50 AM | Your Say (2)

TED is no longer a responsible curator of ideas “worth spreading.” Instead it has become something ludicrous, and a little sinister.

Today TED is an insatiable kingpin of international meme laundering
— a place where ideas, regardless of their quality, go to seek celebrity, to live in the form of videos, tweets, and now e-books. In the world of TED—or, to use their argot, in the TED “ecosystem”—books become talks, talks become memes, memes become projects, projects become talks, talks become books—and so it goes ad infinitum in the sizzling Stakhanovite cycle of memetics, until any shade of depth or nuance disappears into the virtual void. Richard Dawkins, the father of memetics, should be very proud. Perhaps he can explain how “ideas worth spreading” become “ideas no footnotes can support.” -- Evgeny Morozov: The Naked And The TED | The New Republic

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:39 AM | Your Say (8)

Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization By Parag Khanna and Ayesha Khanna


Only the rare reader would finish this piece of digito-futuristic nonsense unconvinced that technology is— to borrow a term of art from the philosopher Harry Frankfurt— bullshit.
No, not technology itself; just much of today’s discourse about technology, of which this little e-book is a succinct and mind-numbing example.... Khanna does not really care about the details of policy. He is a manufacturer of abstract, meaningless slogans. He is, indeed, the most talented bullshit artist of his generation. And this confers upon him a certain anthropological interest. -- Evgeny Morozov: The Naked And The TED | The New Republic

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:24 AM | Your Say (0)

"PC Thought Prisoners talk about the future "

On Neobarbarism | John C. Wright's Journal

the way the Millenarians talk about “the End Times”; namely, as a culmination of a cosmic drama when all merely worldly concerns will fall by the wayside. If the Antichrist has already conquered Jerusalem, and the angels have extinguished one third of the Sun, all concern for long term plans and fears fall by the wayside.

Likewise with Global Warming and other secular, pseudo-religious forms of End Time prophecy: the point is not the think like a civilized man and plan and prepare for things to come. The point is to prepare for the Armageddon and the Second Coming.  The difference is that the PC Thought Prisoners don’t believe in a First Coming.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:38 AM | Your Say (0)

"The federal government abdicated its role as Lord Protector of marriage"

when Lyndon Johnson foisted the Great Society welfare regime upon us. No longer was illegitimacy scorned, it was rewarded.
In fact, marriage, and even cohabitation, was punished by the government. Ruinous lifestyles were monetarily rewarded. One might say "unintended consequences, and what a shame." I say if those outcomes were a surprise to you, then you are a fucking retard. LBJ and his Democratic Congress drove a great sharp stake into the heart of traditional marriage in 1965. It is what it is, now. I would suggest we enjoy the diversity, but Section 8 rowhouse after rowhouse of multigenerational mutt-breeding with no father figures isn't really diverse, is it? -- Velociworld: In The Boudoir With The Man

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:54 AM | Your Say (4)

August 3, 2012

Are you a liberal Republican committed to bipartisanship and bong hits? Then the Schwarzenegger Institute may be for you.

No, no this isn't a joke. Jokes are funny and there's nothing funny about the University of Southern California's "Schwarzenegger Institute on State and Global Policy".
The Schwarzenegger Institute will focus on bipartisan solutions to steroid abuse and illegitimate children. And by steroid abuse and illegitimate children, I mean "local and state issues". -- Daniel Greenfield

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:24 PM | Your Say (4)

PC Thought Prisoners

To the PC Thought Prisoner, affirming the family is the same (by analogy) as opposing sodomy,
and sodomites are regarded not as the practitioners of a disordered sexual appetite but (by analogy) as a separate race or ethnic group who suffer unjust persecution, such as slavery or Jim Crow laws. Hence, reasoning entirely by analogy, if a seller of chicken sandwiches and waffle-cut potato fries affirms the family (which, to sane men, is a comment as boilerplate and boring as being in favor of Mom and Apple Pie and the Flag) to the PC Thought Prisoner, that man is (by analogy) a slaver and a segregationist. -- On Neobarbarism | John C. Wright's Journal

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Of Course. Why did it take so long?


Umbrella Stand "Black lacquered metal with artificial sponge to absorb water." 28 inches high. $200(Umbrella included. Really.).

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:58 PM | Your Say (8)

The Contrived Reciprocity of Conviction

"I wonder how many people out there have bothered to find out whether the person signing their paychecks shares their beliefs on everything? Would they be principled enough to quit their jobs?
I have not asked my boss how he feels about same sex marriage, or God, or Chinese people winning gold medals in the Olympics. I expect and would understand disagreement on some or all of those topics. I would not demand that he be restricted from doing business based on those disagreements. But that might just be selfish, because I want to keep getting paid. -- The Dipso Chronicles

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:19 PM | Your Say (2)

No way to run a railroad: “Only a government subsidized operation could sell hamburgers for $10 each and lose money.”


Amtrak Lost $834 Million on Food in Last Decade Theft by Amtrak food service employees could cost the agency $4 million to $7 million annually.
According to charts shown by Republican committee staff members during the hearing, Amtrak charges about $2 for a soft drink, but the cost to taxpayers is about $3.40 when labor is included. A $9.50 hamburger on the train costs taxpayers $16, the charts showed. Labor adds nearly 60 percent to food and beverage costs.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 2:07 PM | Your Say (5)

Sippican says, "Honestly, Conservatives, Do I have to do everything around here?"

Harry Reid Says He Knows Mitt Romney’s Father Is Embarrassed By His Son, Because George Romney Has Voted Straight Democrat In Every Michigan Election Since His Death In 1995. Twice | The Rumford Meteor

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"Some problems are just too difficult to easily solve."

The problem of being Black and Republican; the problem of being Christian and selling chicken. The problem of being American or Jewish and being alive. --Belmont Club サ Almost True

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World's Oldest Photo Goes on View in Germany


Before There Was Instagram, There Was Joseph Nicéphore Niépce’s “View from the Window at Le Gras” (1826)

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:28 AM | Your Say (1)

America Goes Jousting

No state that took its military seriously as a fighting force, as opposed to an “equal opportunity” jobs program, would put women in combat units.
Not only does their presence damage unit cohesion, which is vital for military effectiveness, but in combat the men will abandon the mission to protect the women. Of course, if the armed forces are really just for putting on displays, why not have women? -- | The American Conservative

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:51 AM | Your Say (1)

"No one can hide anymore: politics will find you."

The screens are everywhere. There's no place to hide from presidential candidates anymore. For a solid year they follow you from the TV monitor in the airport to the one in the taxi;
you check your smartphone and they're in the inbox telling you their plans and asking for money. You get home, turn on the TV, fire up the computer, and they're there. No one can hide anymore: politics will find you. And you wind up having an impression of a candidate sooner than you meant to, and it hardens into an opinion earlier than it used to. People don't make the decision after Labor Day anymore. -- Noonan, The Life of the Party - WSJ.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:45 AM | Your Say (1)

Money in Front, BO


Obama stiffs California city $35,000 while Romney pays his bill.
"€œHere'€™s how much financial trouble Barack Obama'€™s presidential campaign appears to be in: He'€™s stiffing the California city of Newport Beach $35,000 for extra security costs incurred when the campaigner-in-chief held a fundraiser in the oceanfront community early this year. The bill is already nearly two months overdue." Advice to future venues: Demand cash up front. -- Instapundit

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:45 AM | Your Say (2)

Fools rush in where fools have been before.

Just 13 years after getting burned by the dot-com Internet debacle, investors did it again with social-media stocks.... Shares of Facebook, the No. 1 social-networking company, crumbled again Thursday,
trading as low as $19.82 before closing down 84 cents at $20.04. The once hugely hyped stock is now trading 47% below its $38-a-share offering price. -- Facebook stock near half-off price point

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:40 AM | Your Say (3)

"U-6:" Real Unemployment

'Real' Unemployment Rate Shows Far More Jobless The government releases a separate number called the "U-6," which provides a more complete tally of how many people really are out of work.
The numbers in some cases are startling. Consider: Nevada's U-6 rate is 22.1 percent, up from just 7.6 percent in 2007. Economically troubled California has a 20.3 percent real rate, while Rhode Island is at 18.3 percent, more than double its 8.3 percent rate in 2007. Those numbers compare especially unfavorably to the national rate, high in itself at 14.9 percent though off its record peak of 17.2 percent in October 2009.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:35 AM | Your Say (1)

Be Afraid. Be Very Afraid.

OccupyWallStreet or some other form of left populism could easily reignite in this country.
Let Romney get into the White House and then let the economy tank, and the tribes of the left will be back in the streets, banging drums, smoking pot and generally raising a ruckus. -- Via Meadia

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:15 AM | Your Say (4)

Up to 90 000 people, led by stroller-pushing parents and banner-waving children, took to the streets of the semi-autonomous territory on Sunday to denounce "national education", as the subject is officially called.... China's one-party rule is referred to as a "society-first" and "united" system, and is compared favourably to multi-party democracy as practised in the United States, which is described as inefficient and disruptive. A section on multi-party politics comes with the headline: "When the parties struggle, there is disaster for the citizens." -- Hong Kong fights China 'brainwashing' | News24

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 5:17 AM | Your Say (0)

August 2, 2012

At the Olympics the Retton hip type is in the ascendance


The five US women who won the team gold medal the other day are almost perfect exemplars of this.
It is striking to see them together, not a conventional feminine hip among them, although of course they are recognizably teenage girls. But they represent five variations on a single theme: breasts almost non-existent, with shoulders far wider than hips which in turn form nearly a straight line with their waists, above powerfully muscular legs. -- neo-neocon Gymnasts'€™ bodies: form follows function

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Door. Ass. Bang.

Kofi Annan quits as international Syria mediator: U.N.


"The Percy Dovetonsils of international politics"

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:52 AM | Your Say (5)

My Dear Mr. Truman Capote

Letters of Note: This is my last visit

You have betrayed and sold out the talent that was granted you by this department. That talent is now officially withdrawn. Enjoy your dirty money. You will never have anything else. You will never write another sentence above the level of In Cold Blood. As a writer you are finished. Over and out.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:43 AM | Your Say (0)

CFA Appreciation Day – The Triumph of the Ordinary

Yesterday’s Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day was the sort of ‘revolt’ this country needs,
but it was even better than the non violent revolutions and peaceful protests which have changed the world because it was so ordinary. It was just plain, ordinary Americans getting in their cars and doing a plain, ordinary American thing: going out for lunch to a fast food joint. It was just plain, ordinary Americans doing something plain and ordinary, but positive and joyful and good. In buying an ordinary tasty chicken sandwich at their corner fast food emporium ordinary Americans were expressing the wish to be left alone to be ordinary Americans. -- Patheos

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:37 AM | Your Say (2)

"Modern man is almost incapable of distinguishing between:"

Approval and Implicit Condemnation.
Just because you support one thing doesn’t mean you’re viciously antagonistic toward another (i.e. “anti-” the opposite.) If Dan Cathy supports traditional marriage between one man and one woman, that doesn’t mean he ipso facto “hates gay people” or is “anti-gay.” -- 4 Failures in the Chick-Fil-A Controversy | BrandonVogt.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:36 AM | Your Say (1)

The American Totalist Party

Fascism is a child of the Left. Benito Mussolini, the century's preeminent fascist, invented the word to describe his national political system. As a young man, Mussolini was politically groomed and nurtured by Marxists....
Back to the Democrats and Chick-fil-A. Of particular interest is the authority fascism holds over private business. Unlike communism, fascism does not as principle confiscate and nationalize private business, but it reserves the right to do so. Generally, businesses may operate as they please as long as they do not offend the ideology of the state. --Sense of Events:

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:28 AM | Your Say (7)

The Gaffe Factory

Manufacturing gaffes is a lot easier than manufacturing jobs which is why the media has switched from fake optimism about the economy to fake pessimism about Romney's competence. While it takes a lot of work to open a factory that manufactures shoes or microprocessors, manufacturing a gaffe factory is very easy.
Step 1. Call something that a candidate has done a gaffe. Step 2. Report on the gaffe claim that your media outlet just made. Do not call it a claim, treat it as a verified fact that everyone has already acknowledged. Step 3. Turn the gaffe reporting into the major issue by talking about it all the time. Interview experts who are willing to back up your gaffe claim. Step 4. Fire constant questions at the candidate to force him to acknowledge the gaffe. -- Daniel Greenfield

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:02 AM | Your Say (0)

August 1, 2012

Charity by Bouguereau, 1878, together with an analysis of the composition


Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:36 PM | Your Say (5)

"Cardboard poaching"


Inside the Surprisingly Lucrative World of Cardboard Theft: It may sound like a tedious way to earn a living, but it's quite suitable for folks who like a good workout and fast payouts. "
You rent a van and drive down Second Avenue [in Manhattan] or Atlantic in Brooklyn, you pick up a ton and a half of cardboard and get paid 150 bucks for it," says Biderman. "Do that twice a night and you're doing OK."

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:33 PM | Your Say (3)

Beijing notes

The main problems here are the air pollution, and that no one, including taxi drivers, seems to know how to get anywhere.
The rate of change is high and many people are from the provinces, so there is a real information gap. Most of all, I am struck by how Taiwan is more Chinese than is China. -- Marginal Rev

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 6:29 PM | Your Say (1)

News to Me: Consider your life forever changed too.


You thought those small condiment cups you get at fast food restaurants only held a thimble's worth of ketchup, right?
You were wrong. Horribly, brutally wrong. Turns out you can fan them out, meaning you can dunk your fries by the fistful into a sea of crimson tomato deliciousness. -- Gizmodo

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 4:32 PM | Your Say (0)

Chicago public reacts to Chick-fil-A controversy

People who buck the traffic jams (you should have seen them) just to stand in line for 30 minutes to get a chicken sandwich are people who are going to vote in November." --Sense of Events: Heh! Boycott backfire.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 1:24 PM | Your Say (11)

Terrorism is a variant of a phenomenon called “totalism.”

Its devotees -- anarchists, Marxists, or Islamists -- want to impose a new order based on an "all-or-nothing claim to truth."
They operate within distinctive parameters of a €œtheology of Armageddon -- a final battle between good and evil --€“  in which the stakes are nothing less than universal salvation. As outlined in Eric Hoffer'€™s classic, The True Believer, such movements have mastered the art of "religiofication,"€ that is, converting political grievances into messianic aspirations and "€œpractical purposes into holy causes."€ In the 20th century, this mode of structured violence has taken on a life of its own. It is no longer rooted in a  a particular social context and accumulated destructive energy. It goes beyond particular social or economic problems, or adherence to a militant doctrine. Totalist ideology and its use of terror is a global phenomenon. -- Spengler » Lessons from the Red Terror About Islamist Organizations

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:49 PM | Your Say (2)

CNN’s viewership continues to tank:

So how do they respond? They'€™re giving Anderson Cooper'€™s daytime show a makeover including a name change. 
They'€™re going to call it "Anderson Live"€ instead of "Anderson."  No kidding?  Wow, that should really turn things around!  Maybe they should skip the drama and merge with Newsweek. -- CNN: Will the Last Viewer Please Turn Out the Lights? | Power Line

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 10:00 AM | Your Say (4)

Most of the voters who will actually decide the issue

(that small number of true swing voters) aren’t focusing on the campaign just yet.
And there will be many “gaffes”, real and press-manufactured, on both sides before the end, many empty controversies, many cotton candy scandals (fluffed out to look gaudy and impressive but thin and unsubstantial in reality) before the polls close. Romney’s overseas trip will be lost in the mists of time long before anything in this election really matters. -- Romney’s Foreign Takeaways | Via Meadia

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 9:06 AM | Your Say (0)

Every day I find at least one more thing that wears out my...



Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:49 AM | Your Say (2)

Gore Vidal: He Died as He Lived

Gore Vidal Dies Alone, Still Clutching The Phone After Spending 14 Months On Hold Waiting To Reserve A Table At Elaine’s | The Rumford Meteor [The Meteor regrets it cannot send a correspondent to Mr. Vidal’s funeral, but we did send a telegram saying we approved of it.]

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:31 AM | Your Say (9)

Bugs Bugging You? Drop a Dryer Sheet in Your Pants. You're Welcome

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 8:16 AM | Your Say (1)

"We still have a chance if we take over the GOP and advance liberty. "

Most of Obama's angry former voters are angry O didn't produce the free unicorns and rainbows.
They don't give a rip about your or their freedom and they will vote for the next messiah as easily as they voted for the current Dear Leader. Not one in a hundred former O voters recognizes they are the problem. The libs can't read our minds and they don't care about our opinions. They have no shame and no limit on what they want control over. If your plan is to be the last one rounded up at least stop claiming to be a citizen. -- ScottM in Side-Lines: On Cowardice

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:33 AM | Your Say (0)

Three Strikes You're Outage


[1] More than half of India's power-generation capacity of 205 gigawatts is coal-based,
and Coal India Ltd., the world's biggest coal producer, is unable to produce enough owing to delays in getting environmental clearances for mining.

[2] An ambitious program to build nuclear-power plants
has faced public demonstrations, which took off in earnest after the nuclear accident in Fukushima, Japan, last year.

[3] Meanwhile, government giveaways in the form of free electricity to farmers
and a reluctance among politicians to raise power tariffs to sufficiently cover costs have drained cash reserves from the largely state-run electricity-distribution companies, leaving them with mounting debt and hampered ability to purchase power. -- Power Blackout Hits Northern India - WSJ.com

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 7:20 AM | Your Say (2)

Let Them Eat (More) High Speed Rail

Amtrak began service 40 years ago last May. Even the most attentive readers of finem respice might be forgiven for permitting this important event to go unmarked,

accompanied, as it was, by a $1.47 billion loss for Amtrak's 2011 fiscal year. This figure is, in all actuality, not as impressive as it seems. For the last two decades Amtrak, which was expected to break-even three (3) years after its founding in 1971, has been running losses of this size. In fact, its cumulative losses for the last 20 years add up to an Imperial Fuckton of red ink. -- | finem respice

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:23 AM | Your Say (0)

On Cowardice

The reason we are in this mess, and the reason why I don't see any indication of anything getting any better
is because we are indeed a nation, and a civilization, of cowards. I see exactly ZERO willingness by anyone to offer any meaningful resistance to evil. I see zero willingness for anyone to do anything that might result in the least bit of discomfort, loss or material damage to themselves or their estate. --Ann Barnhardt

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:17 AM | Your Say (12)

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:

"And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family?"

Posted by gerardvanderleun at 12:15 AM | Your Say (2)