Wednesday, March 30, 2005

So, exactly which is the party of tolerance?

Just an interesting comparison of university hosted speeches by someone on the right (Ann Coulter) and someone on the left (Ward Churchill) that took place the other day. If you're not from the SF Bay Area (and so don't know why we call Berkeley the Peoples Republic Berkeley) you must read this article on Churchill's visit there....amazing! Churchills unchallenged by the left ideas and their being echoed by other academia brethran on the panel are scarey. I love how the title of these articles reflect the bias towards or against the speaker. Also amazing is that I saw no press on the fact that apparently the 20 yr old women who questioned the event being labeled as a "forum" since the panel and crowd was homogenous was herself heckled by the liberal nazi's (to steal a Churchill reference) in attendance. Got a love those free speech loving open minded liberals!

A favor: a friend who lives in the east bay who doesn't want to be lumped in with Berkeley suggested I change Peoples Republic of the East Bay to Peoples Republic of Berkeley, fair enough!

Big Brother Run Amuck

I'm amazed by these cases where government or institutions are willing to spare no expense to protect those afflicted with suicide by jumping from high places. How reasonable people can sit around and think that they in fact are preventing a suicide or helping those with that intent is beyond me. I know, I can find someone who will say that the barrier on that bridge stopped me and they didn't look for another way...ya well good for them. This is more than likely just a way for those who own the high place (bridge, building, etc.) to try and remove any chance of litigation had someone had what we consider COMPLETELY NORMAL access to said high place and jumped. Lets spend all of our money and inconvenience the entire population to protect the infinitesimally small number among us who no longer wants to be among us! So, we have two f'd up problems here...those who don't want to hold individuals personally reasonable for their idiotic or suicidal actions and a tort happy society. If we can just get the right folks to off themselves we could probably solve both!

Anti-Technology Global Warming Crowd Cries Wolf

So once again we have very detailed claims on a measured effect of humans on the environment from alarmist scientists. The thing I hate about this is the general public thinks that if a "scientist" studies something and draws conclusions it must be so. Not only are scientists just like everyone else (often wrong) the group behind this report (and the writer of this article) clearly have a bias. As an engineer I consider myself a man of science....any observer with a modicum of reason and healthy skepticism could challenge the statements made by this report. Firstly, two thirds of our resources are used up? This is ridiculous...that assumes one has a definitive known maximum quantity of our resources. Of course nobody actually knows how much coal, oil, gas and even water is available. This also assumes the types of resources are static, which is idiotic as invention increases at a staggering rate using the last 2 decades as a baseline. Hybrid vehicles are selling well and hydrogen vehicles are in prototype an example. I'm not arguing that trees, fish and animals aren't being harvested at too fast a rate.....or displaced into extinction. However the theorized impact of air producing tree loss, or supposed food chain impact of everything from insects to elephants is complete speculation. Same for climate change. In fact global warming is the real joke. The scientists who claim that humans are the cause of what they call "global warming" is a claim that doesn't stand up to the facts. The human cause is based on gases and particulates we put into the air primarily because of industry and transportation (vehicles). The problem is that natural occurring sources of these same elements dwarfs the human generated total in a big way. The natural sources, primarily volcanic, have been doing there thing for millions of fact as we go back in time the geological evidence says volcanic activity was much greater in the past and so we can assume was the amount of these bad elements in the atmosphere....yet there was, is, no catastrophic climate change associated with that theory!

The bottom line is that this type of report (and articles on them) should be full of disclaimers similar to those you see in a company IPO. But instead you see only a few numbers and claims labeled with words like "estimated", most are tossed out as absolutes...that's dishonest and to me completely discredits a scientist who either participated in the report or simply signed their name in support of it.

The articles and reports put out by this anti-technology global warming crowd are nearly always accompanied by a not so stealth statement making their disdain for progress this case it is: "A growing proportion of the world lives in cities, exploiting advanced technology. But nature, the scientists warn, is not something to be enjoyed at the weekend. Conservation of natural spaces is not just a luxury". And what is the motivation by talking about a team of scientists who in 1997 tried to put a value resources or benefits we get from nature for free (as they put it)? So what? What if that number was $33 million-trillion? Ya, we know we need more that just the human organism on this planet to survive. Or are you suggesting we can either take care of nature or replace it by spending that amount? It serves no scientific purpose, it's all about an agenda, an opinion, a political viewpoint since we cannot just replace one with the other. IDIOTS!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Rice Alarms Status Quo Arabs

That's my headline as compared to Reuters who of course went searching for supposed "reformist" Arabs to speculate, guess and invent US and Israeli conspiracy theories based on an interview Rice did with the Washington Post last week. Reuters' headline was Rice Alarms Reformist Arabs with Stability Remarks....after reading the Reuters story then read the actual transcript of the interview....I think those who don't want change in this f'd up region of the world look to discredit Rice at every turn. Note the words of these yokels use that make their interpretive leap to suit their needs obvious; "suggesting a new US approach", "They seem to be supporting chaos and instability", "the great risks that Dr Rice suggests", "We see an emphasis on destruction and we see that Israel is willing to push Arab societies to the abyss without caring for stability. We suspect these ideas came from Israel,"

I think what Rice said makes sense....and much of it is not even in our control, she talked about what may happen all on its own just because people witness change elsewhere...and technology accelerates the ability to witness that change. These are comments from people who like the status quo. It's much like most US state public school systems.....gradual change towards how a private school or company is run will never need to completely blow up a "system" in some cases in order to catalyze measurable positive change.

Jesse battles against his insignifcance!

It's pretty strange that Jesse Jackson seems to be inserting himself into two hot issues, Terry Schiavo and Michael Jackson (not that both should be hot!). Suddenly he is Michael Jackson's spiritual leader? And he shows up with Terry's parents with all the press quoting Terry's mother, Mary Schindler, as saying "I wanted the Reverend Jackson here for moral support"! What a crock...I don't believe for a second they invited him, I'll wager he lobbied (offered) his support (in the way of a visit and press conference). Can you point me to even one high profile case/issue involving a white person that Jackson was inserted into and did a press conference with those involved? This smells of publicity hounding after Jackson became nearly insignificant with the younger guard of the black community gaining ground (eg. Barack Obama). Jackson is a fraud as a reverend and is a racist who extorts money from corporations with his race bating threats. He, of course, has already socialized the race issue in the Michael (hide your grade school boys) Jackson's case. I suppose the Schindler's figure any publicity is good publicity but I wish they had turned him down.


Did anybody think we needed a study to know that college faculties are overwhelmingly liberal? Of course not, why don't we do a study to see if the Carl's Jr double $6 burger is high in calories and fat (1360 cals, 96g fat in case you were wondering). Ok, but since we have the study published we can only hope that its gets some publicity and can be a catalyst for change. It's amazing to me that the intellectual college academics think they, and their schools, are part of an intellectually and culturally diverse environment that enrich the students! This couldn't be farther from the truth....those on the left side of the liberal pendulum are the most closed minded group in this country. One interesting stat, that was news to me, in this study was that there is a SERIOUS gender bias for full time faculty....72% men, 28% women...where is the uproar???????? Hahaha....don't practice what you preach you book worm jackasses!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Hump Day Roundup

This Terri Schiavo thing is a total circus....I frankly don't know what to believe....the save a life at all costs side has you believing Michael Schiavo has tried to choke and drug Terri, that he tried to make money of this situation, that his seeking companionship with a women while still married to Terri in her vegetative state is evil and so on. On the other side Michael Schiavo claims Terri stated she wouldn't want to live this way. Then the other side says it was only said in conversation while watching a movie. Terri's side also claims Terri is more aware than Michael or any doctor for that matter believe her to be. The whole thing is a sad mess.

Barry Bonds is the biggest baby on the planet....adding to his woes as the steroid in pro sports scandal continues the IRS is investigating him....his knee is messed up and his playing future is in comes out (because of the steroid thing) that he has had a mistress for years and he bought her a house.....he has always been an uncharismatic ass to the press....and he has a press conference to tell the press he is tired, has "jumped from the bridge", and it's all the press' fault. I'm sure the sympathy for him is universal...what an ass!

This countries pathetic political correctness enabled Brian Nichols to kill 4 when he easily took the gun from the court deputy during his rape trial. The fact that a 230 lbs menacing figure like Nichols wasn't cuffed and shackled and was guarded by a lone 5ft tall 51 year old grandmother says it all. Gee, such restraints on the prisoner might send the wrong message to the jury! And of course women can perform any job as well as a man. Wrong and wrong. If my house is on fire and my kids are upstairs I want burly men fire fighters....if my family is in danger from a some criminal element I want strong male police responding....when we executing special military ops, or have front line combat troops in harms way, or have para-rescue operations I want strong young men doing it....and not women because we all have to pretend we are equal and all able to perform any task at the same level...bullshit and it just cost more lives! Also interesting that nearly all media stories on this Brian Nichols mess fail to inform you that the overpowered officer was female or that the women who finally alerted police that Nichols was in her apartment had read the bible to him for hours which seem to have a calming effect on him.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

There may yet be hope for Academia

Note that I say "may", but the meaningless "no confidence" vote put on by a collection of Harvard profs directed at the University President Lawrence H. Summers surely makes the duplicity of the socialist liberal faculty obvious. They can dish it out but can't take it! I can see why Summers' comments a while back would raise some ire but so do most of the passionate causes of hard core liberals with what? What a bunch of fake free speech loving traitors.....and the sooner we destroy the notion of tenure the completely destroys the effectiveness, commitment and passion for dispensing knowledge. Taranto of the WSJ blog has a great round-up on this Harvard folly. Even Harvard's own paper (Crimson) ripped these idiots with "The two non-binding motions, unique in Harvard's history, are largely symbolic gestures--only the Harvard Corporation, the University's top governing body, can force Summers to step down." In short, it was a show trial, both in procedure and in effect (that is, in the lack thereof). Fittingly, the venue for this vain display was the Loeb Drama Center.

I only hope exposure of the continued idiocy we see by our universities academics will start a wave of change. The college years are a pivotal time for most and its sad how many in a position to influence these young minds do so with hypocritical single mindedness.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Evil Revisionist History

While I'm not a bible thumper (just ask my friends, some of them can post a comment to confirm this fact) the outrage I feel at the release of a watered down and modernized bible is enormous! This is disturbing and sad. These idiots (The International Bible Society) think you and everyone else is too dumb to understand a more literate translation of several thousand year old text. Why don't people realize that when you lower the bar, particularly for kids and young adults, they're more than happy to just make it over....however they're just as willing to embrace great challenge and the end result is life long (teach a man to fish!). What a joke that these pseudo intellectuals believe that the number of readers who would be confused by the true meaning of such words as "stoned" and "aliens" outweighs truth, original intent and a higher bar! After all wouldn't the poor sap not so bright as I think that a women "with child" means a women and a child already born to this world and not one who is pregnant? Oh, and least you think that the context of these words would make there actual meaning clear you must also assume the context is lost on these not so fortunate small yellow bus riding bible readers!

Another sad and pathetic attempt at revision is to replace some (or all, who knows) occurrences of the word "man" with something akin to "people", "human", "us", "the chosen", "them" and so on....we wouldn't anybody to think God actually made an distinction between men and women would we?

Monday, March 14, 2005

Gay Marriage isn't really the agenda!

Update 3/15/05:
I found it interesting that "gays" called the action by the superior court judge who clearly over stepped his powers a step towards equality and also a "stance behind all American's civil rights". WHAT? Show me what civil right is being violated if the majority say we have already reserved the word "marriage" for heterosexual relationships...get your own damn word for your we-can't-advance-the-species-normally freak of nature relationships. I love how this article must also quote a black women who says "I know what discrimination is firsthand," said Pearson, 65, who is African American and grew up in the segregated South. "I'm so happy for them." Ah, but see she refers to "them"...they must be labeled as some group separate from all others? They want to be equal but separate! Just like the supposed "minorities" who want special treatment and equal treatment at the same're either equal or your something else. Until all of those who seek special treatment stop seeking it the majority (as proven by passed ballet measures across the country) will see you as whining parasites whose lot in life is somehow my fault and requires more out of our system than the average "normal" citizen!

Posted 3/14/05:
Today's moronic decision by the California Superior Court puts the gay marriage topic front and center again. We have a law, and it's one the majority of Californians like and even voted to amend in 2000 to make it clear that marriage in the state was to be between one man and one women. Why is this court in a position to tell the people this law is not enforceable as opposed to just interpreting the law we put in place? Judges should be interpreting the law not making or changing it. Anyway, I'm sure someone out there will have a great reason why one guy should be able to override the majority of Californians!

Frankly, the origins of marriage are religious and I don't think the historic definitions can be interpreted to include unions of two individuals sharing the same reproductive organs...if they can then you can argue they include unions between any two (or more) organisms. So, why does the gay community, lobby or any such group feel the word marriage must include them? It's not for equal rights or treatment under the law! That's BS!...civil unions, domestic partnerships and the like cover them just fine. It's all about trying to appear normal, to have the exact same labels as a heterosexual couple. It's clear to me the agenda is to have no stigma, no difference from anybody else in the social order of things. Its ironic that this group who so desperately wants to be "equal" works for hard at standing out and at separation. On one hand they want their union to be the same as mine, but they don't want me in their bar. They want special laws saying you can't discriminate based on sexual preference and yet they don't recognize the more broad equal treatment and discrimination laws already in place cover them. They wanted laws for crimes committed against gays to have different or stiffer penalties that crimes committed against others. Even medical research is special for gays...the money spent on AIDS far exceeds other illnesses and disease that kill and affect of order of magnitude more people than AIDS.

I'm sorry, I live down the road from SF and most of the country or world for that matter doesn't really see what a good portion of the gay community is like. Before you decide that a) as a group to be gay is normal or that b) they are so "special" that our laws need to treat them differently from me...go see the gay pride parade in SF....then tell me what you think.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Soderberg: I Was Only Kidding! (reprint from WSJ)

A complete copy of a piece of Taranto's Best of the Web WSJ column today I love it!

Well, it seems we started something with our item Wednesday about erstwhile Clinton aide Nancy Soderberg's interview on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart." As you'll recall, Soderberg was appearing to promote her anti-Bush book "The Superpower Myth," but instead she and Stewart spent most of the interview talking about how amazingly well the president's Mideast policy is working out and how troubling this success is to Democrats.

The Washington Times, The Weekly Standard and Rush Limbaugh (in a subscription-only page on his site, alas) all picked it up. Now there's a backlash from some on the left, including bloggers Eric Alterman and Mark Francis, both of whom say Soderberg is only joking.

Alterman: "Not only are the denizens of the conservative media too dumb to get the joke, they embarked on an immediate media jihad to burn They [sic] now have their proof that Nancy, indeed, all liberals, hate America." Francis: "Taranto, who, having admitted that he saw the show, must have known the truth, and wrote a slanderous piece anyway."

So we're getting lectured on humor by Eric Alterman, the male equivalent of Nancy Hopkins? And somehow it's "slanderous" to provide an accurate transcript of something someone said? (Actually, we did make one mistake: We thought we heard Stewart say "Baathists" when in fact he said "bad-asses.") Well, whatever. We assumed our readers were smart enough to figure out that there is a jocose element to the programming on Comedy Central. In any case, anyone who wants to evaluate all this for himself can watch the video here.

Soderberg herself showed up on C-Span Thursday, and a caller who'd read our item asked about her comments. Soderberg said the whole thing was no more than a bit of tomfoolery:

This is a comedy show. We were joking about the dilemma of Jon Stewart having criticized the Bush administration over the last four years--what does he do now? And we were joking back and forth. I think anyone who follows the Democratic Party knows that they want America to succeed and President Bush to succeed. It's completely a missed context that the article from The Wall Street Journal editorial page.

Of course, [I] welcome the opportunity to rebut that. There's nothing better that Democrats would like than to see peace in the Middle East, nonproliferation. What I argue in the book is the last four years of the Bush administration have failed to advance those agendas, and I welcome what appears to be a shift in the administration right now to take those issues on with more realistic policies. And of course, I want them to succeed, so thank you for that question.

Let it be known, then, that Soderberg wants America to succeed. Actually, she said as much in the Comedy Central interview, and we quoted it: "As a Democrat, you don't want anything nice to happen to the Republicans, and you don't want them to have progress. But as an American, you hope good things would happen."

To our ear, this was a candid admission of ambivalence. As a patriotic American she wants her country to succeed. But as a partisan Democrat, she doesn't like to see Republicans do well--and, although she didn't make this point explicitly, she is invested in an ideological worldview that is under challenge from reality. In our opinion, she's not a bad person but a good person struggling to overcome bad ideas.

The it-was-only-a-joke line we're hearing from Alterman, Francis and Soderberg herself, though, is just too simplistic to take seriously. Why would it be funny to suggest that Democrats are hoping for America to fail--as Soderberg did four times--unless there's an element of truth to it?

Update: Taranto hits this topic again today. In particular I like an email he got from Eric Axelson that I think rings true and sadly for both sides of the isle:

As a Democratic elected official in the 1980s I had a similar response to any of Ronald Reagan's initiatives. I can recall a sinking feeling as the stock market took off in late 1982, worrying that Reagan would get credit. Or being peeved that the Grenada invasion was so successful. Or that Reagan engineered the tax reform that Bill Bradley and Dick Gephardt had staked out. And conversely, when the Iran-contra scandal blew up I was delighted that Reagan would be brought down a peg (although Oliver North pretty much cleaned the clocks of the lawyers and congressional inquisitors in his testimony). The bottom line for us partisan Democrats back then (as now) was that if it was good for Reagan (even if also good for the country) we opposed, belittled, quibbled, nattered and otherwise sought to diminish.

It was only well after Reagan had left office that I began to see how successful and far-reaching his policies actually were. In the 1990s I began to annoy my leftist friends by stating the obvious, that Reagan was the most successful U.S. president since FDR. And it was only a relatively short ideological journey (helped along by Clinton's feckless policies and corruption) to embrace the policies of President Bush that are engendering freedom in places that have known only tyranny.

English is a bad language!

The Drudgereport puts a ridiculous headline (English linked to promiscuity in Hispanic teens) on a story of a study just released today that speaks to something called immigrant paradox, that Hispanics coming to the United States are healthier than second- and third-generation U.S. residents from the same countries. The study didn't in fact link speaking English to promiscuity! It did show that the students in the study who primarily speak English had sex at twice the rate of those who spoke primarily Spanish. So in idiotic fashion Drudge, and I'm sure others, will make either a headline or commentary about this study as if it's an indictment of our culture. As if this suggests to remain closer to their Hispanic culture would keep them more pure! Of course it never cross the minds of the academics who did this study that maybe the fact that speaking the local language better and frequently dramatically increased their social circle and thus the chances of a sexual encounter. Or, any number of other factors having better English skills would enable (getting a job, going to school, the knowledge that there is a better life outside of their community which could make them bitter, blah, blah)...but again all would increase their exposure to more people, and maybe more people with similar interests and thus hormones win out. Personal responsibility of both parents the kids themselves is the issue!

And the crying continues......

You would think that the liberal constituents of Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrat disciples would be ticked off with all the time this crowd spends crying about how the party in power has the advantage instead of doing their job. I love the rhetoric she spews:

Republicans on the Rules Committee have intentionally "used emergency meeting procedures and late-night meetings . . . to discourage Members and the press from participating in the legislative process." use the rules to fight back you idiots! Work late! And we didn't vote the press into a legislative position, we voted you all in...the press isn't suppose to be participating, only reporting!!!!!!!!!

And how about the hype in this statement, I'm sure the report will have some evidence rising to the level of the language Pelosi used when she says the report will document:

"devastating details of the profound abuse of power that characterizes House Republicans after 10 years in the majority."

REALLY? Devastating? Profound abuse of power? Give me a break!

Of course the liberal pseudo intellectuals probably think trying to discredit, disrupt and constantly work at displacing conservatives is the job of their liberal legislators. It's a shame since it's clear that partisanship is taking a front seat to good legislation, good presidential appointment approval and just coming to the table for the good of the country. Both sides need to compromise but the party not in the power position has to acquiesce more...that's just the nature of things....if the Dems don't get this and spend as much energy as it appears they might on being disruptive instead of getting anything done they will lose 50% of their base in '06 (I hope :))


First, I have been super busy with work and a remodel...but I have plenty of pent up bitterness about the events of the world since my last post.

Italy you disappoint me! I love all things Italian, the place, the food, the culture, design, cars and my wife and family who are Sicilian and Northern Italian....HOWEVER...what the hell are they thinking paying ransoms for hostages in Iraq? Nothing like fanning a fire! I guess now they're rethinking this idiotic strategy! Interesting how the press omits that the former Italian hostage Giuliana Sgrena is a communist journalist sympathetic to anyone against the US efforts in Iraq. She put herself in harms way socializing with insurgents and after cash was paid for her release her Italian government agent driver got himself killed and her injured with his investigation is appropriate but conspiracy theories are a joke.

Update: My dad pointed me to today's WSJ and a piece by it's editorial board who agrees with's a subscription only view so I have put it here:


Italy's Ransom

Rome adopts a policy of deliberately aiding terrorism.

Americans join Italians in mourning the death of Italian secret service officer Nicola Calipari, whose funeral was held in Rome on Monday. Agent Calipari died a hero last Friday, reportedly using his body to shield freed journalist/hostage Giuliana Sgrena from gunfire as their car approached American troops near Baghdad Airport. So perhaps Ms. Sgrena will also shed a tear for the Americans and Iraqis who will die because of the ransom that was paid for her release.

So far, all the world's moral anger has focused on the claim that U.S. soldiers were reckless, or even tried to "assassinate" her, as Ms. Sgrena's newspaper, the communist Il Manifesto, put it. But her claims in some interviews that her car was moving slowly and cautiously are contradicted by, well, Ms. Sgrena.

Her own account of the fateful journey, published Sunday, has them traveling so fast they were "losing control" and laughing about what an irony it would be if they had an accident after all that had happened. In other words, they probably looked like a suicide car bomber to a scared American solider who had to make a split-second decision at night. (The military declines to give figures on car bombs specifically for operational security reasons. But "explosive devices" of various kinds are by far the leading killers in Iraq, accounting for close to half of all deaths from hostile fire, and nearly twice as many as gunshot wounds.)

Arguably far more reckless was Italy's decision to pay ransom--reportedly of $6 million or more--to secure her release. Italy is also believed to have paid ransom for the release of two aid workers taken captive last year. The Italians know the U.S. opposes the policy, which may be why Ms. Sgrena's transfer to the airport was not sufficiently coordinated with U.S. forces.

Not only does paying ransom encourage more kidnapping--of Italians especially--it also puts money in the hands of the enemy in a country where $40 buys an automatic rifle and $200 an attack on U.S. forces. The shooting of a speeding car at a military checkpoint in a war zone is an unintentional tragedy, but the paying of ransom amounts to a policy of deliberately aiding terrorists.