Saturday, July 19, 2008

Doctors Against Sharp Pieces Of Metal That Don't Have A Blunt Round Nose

First they came for our rifles.
Then they came for our pistols.
Then they came for our kids' playground equipment.
And diving boards at public swimming pools.

Then they came for our sharp pieces of metal that don't have "a blunt round nose".

HT to Alissa In Wonderland, via Nick M.

Fill In The Blank

The Libertarian Party Of Colorado blog recently linked to a Rocky Mountain News story about Colorado's rising unemployment rate.
But the news hasn't been bad for all sectors of the economy.....
"Although employment growth has been positive, it has been too modest to absorb the state's expanding labor force," Donald J. Mares, executive director of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, said in a statement.
The state labor department said the largest contributor to job growth has been the ____________ sector, which showed a gain of 10,200 jobs and accounted for roughly one-third of net job gains since last June.

If you're a regular reader of this site, you probably don't need to hit the links to fill in that blank.

Don't allow yourself to think about how much unemployment that the ____________ sector creates while preserving its own growth rate.
The mind recoils.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Brent Rinehart's Comic Book - I need a copy

Where to begin, where to begin....

According to the Associated Press:

OKLAHOMA CITY — Some Oklahoma County voters can expect to receive comic books in the mail soon, but the subject matter will have a serious tone.
The 16-page publication prepared by Commissioner Brent Rinehart's re-election campaign lampoons gays and criticizes Rinehart's political opponents.
It also features an angel who supports the embattled commissioner and Satan, who supports his critics."It's more or less a story of my experiences of the last four years of being the county commissioner of District 2," Rinehart told The Oklahoman, which obtained the comic on Wednesday.Toga-wearing gays, political figures, trench coat-clad henchmen, concerned residents and Rinehart make up the rest of the comic's characters.
In one sequence, Satan says: "If I can get the kids to believe homosexuality is normal!"
The angel replies: "Hey Satan, not with Brent around you won't!"

Someone has posted the entire comic book here. Do yourself a favor, hit the link. Please. You'll walk around happy and laughing for the rest of the day. I plan on getting to work bright and early this morning, so I can print a limited edition of this thing to mail anonymously to unsuspecting friends and family. I really can't tell you how much I love being alive in a time and place that produces stuff like this. Can you imagine being a resident of The Great State of Oklahoma, Oklahoma County, District #2, and finding a hybrid like this in your mailbox from your freakin' county roads commissioner?

The president of the company where I work, known on this site as Marvel Variants, is a comic book collector.

Mr. Variants, if these things show up on Ebay, guess what you're getting for Christmas this year? You'll be one of the few collectors to own a Volume #1, Issue #1 from the Stan Lee of the Oklahoma County, District #2 Roads Department. (Oklahoma readers - please email me if you can get your hands on an autographed copy, good condition, in a plastic sleeve. Mailing label and postmark are ok, since they help guarantee authenticity. I'll pay more than market value.)

A few things worthy of comment:

-The AP article says that it took Rinehart two months to write this epic.

- Notice that the phrase "Liberal Good Ol' Boys" is used several times. I didn't know they existed. I know lots of liberals, and lots of Good Ol' Boys, but they aren't the same people.

- Rinehart is involved in some kind of campaign finance lawsuit. His job is to keep the roads in good repair, and to build new ones. Therefore, the comic book is about gays, Satan, liberals, the cross at the county fairgrounds, and pedifiles (sic).

- I'll admit to throwing up some goofy spelling, grammar, and sentence structure on this site. I usually post things in a hurry. However, I'm not trying to defend myself in a lawsuit. I'm not printing my drivel and mailing it to every voter in my home county. Couldn't Rinehart find a talented seventh-grader to spellcheck that thing?

- If you don't get a kick out of the drawings of toga-clad, pan-flute playing, limp-wristed gay protesters, then there's obviously no room for joy and happiness in your life. I've known several gays and lesbians from Oklahoma, and none of them dressed like refugees from a pastoral poem.

Here's more from the AP article: "I do not know who the good ol' boys at the courthouse are," said County Assessor Leonard Sullivan, a Republican who has had public disagreements with Rinehart."I've really encouraged him on more than one occasion to get professional help. He really needs it," said Sullivan, who is not depicted in the comic.

If Brent Rinehart were to receive professional help, he'd be like Faulkner without alcohol or Hunter S. Thompson without drugs. Would Van Gogh have done any interesting paintings if he had gotten professional help? I hope Rinehart declines any treatment so the world can have more of his work. God made plenty of talented writers, gifted artists, and people who can spell.

But he only made one Brent Rinehart.

Here's the Re-Elect Rinehart website. HT to the incomparable Radley Balko of Reason magazine for bringing this to a wider audience.

Update from July 24th. I've gotten about a jillion hits from this thing, so maybe someone can help me.... This would be the ideal collectors item. Is there anyone at the courthouse who could get one autographed by Drew Edmondson, Jim Roth, Sheriff Whetsel (with the pencil-thin moustache), Jim Dickinson, Brian Maughn, and J.D. Johnston? For historians, would this not be worth its weight in gold?

Here's a YouTube of Rinehart on CNN:

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Happy Cost Of Government Day !

I hope everyone had a pleasant "Cost Of Government Day" yesterday.

(For those who are unfamiliar with the concept, Cost Of Government Day is an American holiday that slides further and further back on the calendar each year. It's the day that reflects how long Americans have to work each year to pay for our federal, state, and local government. Read more by clicking here.)
The chart above shows how COGD has slid from June to July during the last nine years.

To celebrate all this increased government spending, I did the following:
* I hit the snooze button on the alarm clock 5 times before getting out of bed. I know that I should work to pay for things I purchase, but I'm going to pass this work on to my child. Deficit spending should be counterbalanced by deficit work, don't you think?
* I went to Starbucks and took up a collection for orphans in Burma, to be paid when the orphans retire at age 65. If it appears that the orphans will live past 65 and the funds are running low, I can always push back the retirement age.
* I took part of the orphan money and bought a double espresso. I paid $25 for it, which some of you might think is too much. That's none of your business. Starbucks was a major contributor to my Burmese orphan fundraiser, and this is how I give back to the community. Plus, I have to protect American jobs by paying too much. To do less would be unpatriotic.
* Since I work in the transportation industry, I have a vested interest in keeping the cost of fuel as low as possible. I purchased several farms worth of wheat, and converted the wheat to ethanol. Not only is this bad for the environment (which gives me an opportunity to set up more programs to protect the environment), but when I convert food to fuel it also helps create more orphans in places like Burma ! More orphans = more fundraisers !
* My employees are, without exception, a bunch of badasses. So I've set up a program where I have my employees stationed in 135 other companies, just to keep things stable. Helps me keep an eye on things. This costs a lot, but I'm not the one paying for it.
*Shortly before lunchtime on COGD, I used Eminent Domain legislation to tear down a Burmese orphanage and put a Wal-Mart in its place. We'll see a huge increase in tax revenue from this move. This will allow us to spend more than ever.
* Then I took a congressperson to lunch and worked on getting subsidized. We discussed how much I would contribute to his campaign. We discussed how he could keep foreign competitors out of my industry. We chatted about creating some burdensome regulations that would prevent newcomers from starting their own businesses that could someday compete with mine. It was time well spent.
We didn't talk at all about what kind of work I do, since it doesn't really matter. What matters is that I pay him. Then he subsidizes me with an even greater amount of money. Your money.
Thank you for this gift. I want you to know that I'm not spending it wisely.
But I'm protecting American jobs.
* After lunch I checked on some of the schools that I support. The kids there don't read and can't write, despite being promoted every year. (I have to teach my own classes at work on HOW TO READ A TAPE MEASURE !) Then I followed up with my congressman to ensure that school voucher programs don't make any headway. I'm a passionate believer in all of America's children receiving the same level of education, even if that level is "none".
* I fired a kid for sending an important package via the U.S. Postal Service instead of FedEx or UPS. What an idiot.
* I wrote a check to pay for the private security service at the gated community where I live. Then I wrote another check to a lobbying group called "Moms Against Guns".

* There wasn't much going on after that, so I went to see the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. I like to get drunk and eat too much while watching athletes try to carry leather bags of air across arbitrary lines on the ground. I like it when vendors pay for me to have this experience. I'm delighted that they can deduct this expense from their taxes, so people like you will have to pay even more taxes for the benefit of people like me. I love for cities to build huge sports arenas at your expense so people like me can enjoy these spectacular events.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.

* I had a wonderful Cost Of Government Day, and hope you did too. Let's try to celebrate in August next year, ok? Vote for Democrats, whose stated goal is to increase the size of government. Vote for Republicans, who claim to favor smaller government, but spend more than Democrats.
Work harder, not smarter.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Caption This

I need a caption for this picture.

Congratulations to Gar of HeyGar's Random Ramblings, winner of last week's caption challenge.
A two dollar donation has been made in his name to The Whited Sepulchre Outreach Ministry And Social Club For Bloggers Who Can't Get Digg Icons To Appear On Their Posts.
Thanks to SpartanTailGate for the picture

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends, Right Wing Edition

Here are some of the best posts from the people who are so far to the right that they make me look like a Marxist humanities professor.

Blackfive has a link to the story you'll never hear about elsewhere - an AP photographer filmed the Taliban's execution/murder of two women. Not for the faint of heart, and don't watch the video if you're faint of anything.

Blackfive is the best military blog I've found so far. Most of the authors are current or retired military officers.

After the 5-4 Supreme Court decision upholding 2nd Amendment rights, The New York Times ran an editorial that was just begging to be ripped apart. Fighting For Liberty beat me to it. He took a different approach than I would've, but it's a good Fisking.

GrEaT sAtAn'S gIrLfRiEnD has a post on Nazanin Afshin-Jam, 2003's Miss Canada. Afshin-Jam is now an outspoken advocate for Women's Rights in the Middle East in general and Iran in particular. (And anytime I link to GSG-friend, I have to explain that the U.S. is known as the Great Satan, therefore Israel is Little Satan. It takes a while to learn and understand GSGirlfriend-speak.)

Barack Obama has created some controversy by speaking in front of a Seal Of The President Of The United States that has his "Yes We Can" slogan translated into Latin. The Grouchy Old Cripple has a more appropriate suggestion.....

The Heartless Libertarian proves here that his blog is poorly named.

Iowahawk has a message from the Al-Qaeda's director of quality control. Kinda like my message from the Jihadist Safety Consultant, but funnier.

Last Of The Few has a video which proves that some of our military guys have WAY too much time on their hands.

Pajamas Media is still the best Republican Blog aggregator.

Patterico's Pontifications did a link to The New Yorker cartoon cover of Barack and Michelle O. in Muslim garb. As of Monday, July 14th at 11 p.m., it had 131 comments, some of which are brilliant, some are dumb, and some are hilarious.

Red State explains why Bush is calling the Dem's bluff r.e. offshore oil drilling. Madame Pelosi comes if for the usual abuse.

Right Wing News features an interview. An interview that explains Global Warming. No, wait a minute, Global Cooling. Aw heck, let's just call it Climate Change and cover all the bases.

The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler is the first blog I ever read. An acquired taste. Not for the easily offended. He's got good stuff to say about the relationship between biofuels and rising fuel prices worldwide. Check out the cartoon in the comment field.
The Anti-Idiotarian has added another feature that I think is brilliant. Whenever two commenters are spatting back and forth at each other, he opens up something called The Imperial Colosseum - a place where they can go at each other until one party or the other gives up. This one is between Hoghead and Southern Libertarian.

Aurora at The Midnight Sun has a post about the brutality of Al-Qaeda.

The answer to The New Pundit's question is "Yes".

I already link to everything Wolf Howling does, via that little rolling post thingy in the bottom right corner. But this motivational poster deserves special attention.....

That's all I've got. Hope you enjoy the posts.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Prediction Update

A couple of months ago, I went out on a limb and made a few predictions.
It's time for an update. If you're so inclined, check out the link and come back. Or don't.

Prediction #5:
Bush is trying to open up more of our coastlines to oil rigs.
He is currently opposed by Ms Pelosi, whose supporters apparently have faith in the future development of Perpetual Motion machines.

Prediction #4:
Yesterday's Fort Worth Star-Telegram had the Cowboys ranked as the #1 team in the NFC.
They usually are.
Unfortunately for the Boys, the City of Arlington is shocked, (shocked !) to discover that they have somehow paid 60% more for land than anticipated. Eminent Domain lawsuits are still grinding on. Basically, this means that Jerry Jones will not have the football gods on his side this season. #4 still looks safe.

Prediction #3:
This one isn't possible to update. It'll either happen or it won't.

Prediction #2:
I'm not thrilled either way, but check this out. Obama and McCain are almost tied.

Prediction #1:
There are still no signs that Barack Obama has totally lost his mind.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Barack Obama and Michelle Obama on the cover of The New Yorker

Here's the drawing of Barack Obama and Michelle Obama now on the cover of The New Yorker magazine.

Let's see....we've got what looks like a picture of Osama Bin Laden over the fireplace, which has an American flag burning inside.

Michelle has an Angela Davis-size afro going, and there's a machine gun strapped to her back.

Barack is wearing a turban, robe and sandals.

They're standing in the Oval Office, doing their fist bump.

Here's The Huffington Post:

The illustration, by Barry Blitt, is called "The Politics of Fear" and, according to the NYer press release, "satirizes the use of scare tactics and misinformation in the Presidential election to derail Barack Obama's campaign." Uh-huh. What's that they say about repeating a rumor?
Presumably the New Yorker readership is sophisticated enough to get the joke, but still: this is going to upset a lot of people, probably for the same reason it's going to delight a lot of other people, namely those on the right: Because it's got all the scare tactics and misinformation that has so far been used to derail Barack Obama's campaign — all in one handy illustration.

Anyone who's tried to paint Obama as a Muslim, anyone who's tried to portray Michelle as angry or a secret revolutionary out to get Whitey, anyone who has questioned their patriotism— well, here's your image.

We Can't Change The Weather, No Matter What Pat Robertson And Al Gore Say

Here are the non-scientific reasons that I am an AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) skeptic.
Define anthropogenic: adjective - meaning that it's all your fault.

1) It's a fashionable belief. Most fashions fall from favor quickly. We'll see.
After a while, though, the list of things sloppily attributed to Global Warming becomes unintentionally hilarious.

2) When I was in elementary school, I remember a group of my uncles discussing Hurricane Camille, the devastating hurricane that hit the Mississippi gulf coast in 1969. There had been several other severe storms and hurricanes in that time period.
One of my uncles floated the idea that the weather patterns had been severely altered by our exploration of space during the Apollo missions. After all, it seemed that "every time we went up there" there was a storm afterward.
I couldn't yet articulate the concept that correlation is not causation, but I knew that sending up spacecraft wasn't causing hurricanes.
People have a need to believe that everything is about them. It's nice to believe that you're the center of the universe, that God stays up late to admire you, that gays and lesbians in New Orleans could cause Hurricane Katrina, and that we can change the weather. I don't think we could change the weather even if we tried, much less change it by accident.
Why is it ok to ridicule charlatans like Pat Robertson when they threaten to bring down tornados and hurricanes on Disney World and Dover, but when Al Gore threatens to raise the sea levels, he gets a free pass from people who should know better?

3) I remember sitting in the North Sunflower Academy library in the mid-1970's, and reading reports, perhaps this one, about the dangers of Global Cooling. Yes, Global Cooling. Scared the hell out of me.
This article has been reprinted numerous times by other skeptics and mockers who enjoy throwing rotten eggs at Al Gore's chapel.
I love the last paragraph as much, or more, than anything ever printed. Remember, this is about Global Cooling:

Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any positive action to compensate for the climatic change, or even to allay its effects. They concede that some of the more spectacular solutions proposed, such as melting the Arctic ice cap by covering it with black soot or diverting arctic rivers, might create problems far greater than those they solve. But the scientists see few signs that government leaders anywhere are even prepared to take the simple measures of stockpiling food or of introducing the variables of climatic uncertainty into economic projections of future food supplies. The longer the planners delay, the more difficult they will find it to cope with climatic change once the results become grim reality.

Yes, we need to act quickly. We need to melt the Arctic ice cap. We need to panic. The sky is falling, the sky is falling.

4) Speaking of panic, the primary evangelists of man-made climate change are set to make a fortune if we panic and Congress subsidizes their alternative energy start-up companies. Hell, they're going to make a fortune just doing the lobbying and doing shakedowns of the existing manufacturing companies. It's a win-win.

5) Anthropogenic Global Warming advocates are starting to acknowledge that we're probably going to have a ten-year period of Global Cooling. This cooling is also supposed to be a sign of warming. I swear I don't sit around making this stuff up. I just copy it or link to it.

6) At the end of the last ice age, approximately 11,500 years ago, temperatures spiked upward 22 degrees (F) in 50 years. This didn't happen because Fred Flintstone's foot-powered SUV had an excessive carbon footprint. It happened because that's what our planet does. But I bet that various witch doctors were throwing virgins into volcanos in an effort to please the gods and stop global warming.

7) Speaking of Greenland, from the year 800 to 1300, it had a much calmer climate. The climate change at the beginning of this time period was not caused by Viking oil tankers.

8) Thousands of websites and editorials have predicted that it will be possible to navigate across the Arctic circle by the end of September, since the ice cap will be gone. I was going to bet $100 that it won't happen. This guy beat me to it. This is a new site, the guy is very very funny, and his site is already getting lots and lots of traffic. I hate him.
I'm still good for the bet if anyone wants to take me up on it.

9) The guy who runs The Coyote Blog doesn't think we're having an impact on the climate that is larger than the natural temperature swings. He's right about everything else, so I'm siding with him.

Gore cartoon lifted from Pete's Place.