Friday, January 31, 2014

Five Years Later, Obama Finally Shafts the Green Rubes

So the Keystone XL pipeline raises no environmental concerns, so says the State Dept.'s report released today.  Everyone knew this, but the media, naturally, is treating this as news and a revalation, so that Lightworker doesn't look cynical and less than blameworthy.

The truth is that everyone involved knew that there were no exceptional environmental concerns to the project.  All that study had been done by the time Obama came into office, and Obama only needed to dot Is and cross Ts.  Well, that is unless you want to rally your base..twice.  And he did.  He kept the issue alive for the 2012 campaign so he could raise money and rally his base by pretending that he was against it. 

Now, it is likely that the pipeline will get approved.  In the meantime, we've wasted five years and tens of millions of dollars, looked like flakes on the world stage, and damaged our relationship with our neighbor Canada. 

But Lightworker don't care, he got re-elected and you gotta break a few eggs if you know what I mean.  I wonder how used and exploited all the green, anti-Keystone rubes feel just about now knowing that this pipeline is going to get built?

Rube Self-Identification in 3-2-1...

Funny That, Murderous Tyrant Uses Language of the Left to Cover Up Oppression

Into the annals of vile, evil-appeasing euphemisms such as "workplace violence" (for Islamist inspired murder at Ft. Hood), we can add "urban planning."
It said officials in President Bashar al-Assad’s government and state media have described the demolitions as part of urban planning or an effort to remove illegally constructed buildings. But HRW said it found military forces supervised the demolitions, which each targeted areas recently hit by fighting and known to be pro-opposition.
Yeah, that's urban planning alright.  Hey, let's fete this reformer Assad, negotiate with him and put his wife on the cover of Vogue or something...

Syria’s Assad flattens pro-rebel districts

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Breaking: Post-Klein WonkBlog Still Terrible

This post from WonkBlog (no, I don't read WonkBlog, a friend pointed it out) is so incredibly daft, it is hard to know where to begin, but let's just look at this one howler.
Until Obama deals with this fact, every time he asks corporate America to do something like raise wages, executives will feel free to ignore him. And it’s no wonder: Because they don’t answer to the president -- they answer to shareholders.
Huh?  Where did the insane notion that Obama could ask people to do things generally and that they should give him the time of day even come from??  And where did the insane notion, specifically, come from the President ought to have any say in setting wages?

This is such an incredible offense to logic and the values of a democratic society and private enterprise that it makes my head hurt.

The whole thing is atrocious...apparently "shareholder value" was invented in the 1980s (subtle dig at Reagan?).  Really?  Owners just started to demand optimal profitability and capital efficiency from their employees in the 1980s?

Waxman to Retire, Your Liberty Expands at the Margin

Your freedom is already greater today than it was just yesterday.  Waxman has been one of the worst perpetrators of eroding liberty in modern America.  We will all breathe a little freer once he's gone.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

SOTU Reveals Obama Is Where I Have Said He Is For Some Time Now

Well, the reviews are in and most commentators have chalked up the SOTU as a bust - a small bore effort at warmed over ideas at best, yet another example of lies, half-truths, and distortions at worst.  I don't read the rabidly Obamabot press so I am sure somebody, somewhere is calling this SOTU a triumph, but you won't find it in the MSM.  Ron Fournier is about where most MSMers are: Blah.

I have said it over and over again - this is not a surprise, this is not a cosmically tragic turn, this is EXACTLY what was going to happen no matter what, this was inevitable.
As I have said before, history will not wrestle with the question of why Obama turned out to be so disappointing, rather it will wrestle with the question of why Americans placed such lofty expectations onto a man of no consequence and no achievement.  Why did we pluck a small man out of obscurity and raise him up on a cloud of delusional hope?
Democrats have done themselves a awful disservice twice over.  First they handed the reins of the party to the worst of all worlds, an incompetent with thuggish tendencies.  That alone is bad.  Second, not seeing the risk in that, they magnified the risk by building Obama up on a cloud of lofty expectations that no human could vindicate.  The raised him up higher so the inevitable crash would be that much more spectacularly painful.  All the tricks in the Democratic trade - lofty expectations, rock-star marketing, grand projects in big government - have all been significantly depleted by the Obama experiment.

I was way ahead of the game in declaring Obama over.  I think the world is catching up to me.  My prediction at this point is, in a few months (after the meaning of this SOTU sinks in), the main theme of the MSM will be contemplation of how does the nation muddle along with a seriously defenestrated executive.  Conservatives will, rightly, wonder how the nation will survive and lefties will ponder this state of affairs with a faculty lounge type of introspection (while desperately figuring out how to market Hillary in the face of a crashed and charred Obama).

So, at this milestone, let's update where we are.  We are exactly where we have been.  Obama is over.  The world is growing darker.  The US is broke and getting broker.  The next few years will be tremendously dangerous. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Awesome! The Government Wants to Help Me Retire in Comfort!

The AP, via Zero Hedge, reports that the Pen-and-Phone Guy in Chief wants to setup a retirement plan for low income people consisting of US Treasuries.
Eager not to be limited by legislative gridlock, Obama is also expected to announce executive actions on job training, retirement security and help for the long-term unemployed in finding work.

Among those actions is a new retirement savings plan geared toward workers whose employers don't currently offer such plans.

The program would allow first-time savers to start building up savings in Treasury bonds that eventually could be converted into a traditional IRAs, according to two people who have discussed the proposal with the administration. Those people weren't authorized to discuss it ahead of the announcement and insisted on anonymity.
A couple thoughts come to mind.

1)  Selling Treasuries today, given that rates are artificially suppressed and the creditworthiness of the federal government is seriously degraded, might just qualify as an investment scam worthy of SEC investigation.

2)  As ZH points out, how conveeeeeeen-ient that the federal government would seek to become a new, major buyer of Treasuries just as the Federal Reserve is getting out of the Treasury-supporting business via this whole tapering thing.

3)  We have 401ks, IRAs (Roth, Traditional, Rollover, and Spousal), SEPs, Keoghs, and that good ole' fashion thing known as 'individual savings' that go into everything from CDs to munis to the stock market to home equity (primary residence and rental property).  What gives Dear Leader the idea that there just ain't enough vehicles out there for people to save for retirement???  Must be thinking the same thing they did with ObamaCare: who cares if the uninsured are uninsured by choice, we'll just take control of the system and jam it on people.

4)  We know that the Obama administration has sought to develop the intellectual and policy case for commandeering private retirement savings in favor of government-provided retirement plans.  Is this a pilot program for their ultimate vision, a camel's nose in the tent??

5) Argentina.  Poland.

Top ObamaCare Pundit: GOP Proposal Pretty Darned Good

By far, the two most prolific and analytical commentators on ObamaCare are Bloomberg's Megan McArdle and Forbes's Avik Roy.  If you are not reading them, you are less informed than you should be.  Thus it is of no small import that Roy has declared the Coburn-Burr-Hatch proposal pretty good.
“Repealing and replacing” Obamacare with market-oriented reforms has been the Republican mantra for years now. If you’re a long-time follower of this space, you know that we’re skeptical that Obamacare will ever be repealed, GOP slogans to the contrary. Today, however, a trio of experienced Senate Republicans—Tom Coburn (Okla.), Richard Burr (N.C.), and Orrin Hatch (Utah)—have put forth the most thoughtful and constructive plan yet developed to repeal and replace Obamacare. The plan seeks to ensure that as many Americans have health coverage as Obamacare does. It’s a proposal grounded in the real-world tradeoffs that all serious reformers must make. Want to know how those tradeoffs might affect you? Read on.

When Nearly All Men Do It, It's Exploitation; When Bubba Does It, Totally Fine

Ruth Marcus:  Lewinsky was good to go.

Wait, doesn't this go against all feminist sexual orthodoxy that we've been hearing for decades...that a woman, no matter how she acts, dresses, speaks, flirts or behaves, is to be judged in any way, nor is she inviting reprehensible male behavior.  All women are free to act in any way they see fit in expressing their sexual side and ALL men at ALL times must never interpret outwardly sexually aggressive messages, body language or behavior as an invitation to "exploitation."   Isn't that what's  been drilled into our heads for decades?

Yes, but...well, not for our lefty saints...

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Coming Wealth Tax

Remember I told you about the plan behind "no plan"?
Look at the debt clock.  What is the only number in green on that page that even comes close to signifying that we aren't dead flat broke?   Hint: Look towards the bottom.

It's Total National Assets.  Specifically, Household Assets and Corporate Assets.  There's $96 trillion there.

And they're going to steal it.

Not today.  Not Barack Obama.  But someday.  The next Barack Obama will do it.  This Barack Obama is just preparing for the heist to go down.  The next radical sheep in moderate clothing that the media fawns over, covers for, and aids and abets all the way to the White House will steal from this honey pot.
Today, via Zero Hedge, we see the world's second most important monetary institution giving up the game - if your country is broke, steal private money.  Obviously they don't call it stealing, they call it a "capital levy."   And, of course, they absolutely, totally don't support doing it more than once. 

Yeah, right.

Stupid Party Gets Into Gear

Prof. Jacobson notes that the most dangerous years of the Obama presidency are upon us and that we need a united front opposing his increasingly imperial presidency (that's not my assessment) and what are we going to see - a Republican war on its Tea Party faction.

Not just that, but a union-funded war on the Tea Party.
A Republican group promoting pro-business candidates as it battles the Tea Party in U.S. primary campaigns is being financed mostly by labor unions, one of the Democratic Party’s staunchest allies.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Thug Government and Dangerous Times

"If you want to see what American fascism would look like, well this is it."

This is worrying. (More here.)

It just so happens that I am reading yet another book on the rise of Hitler and the Nazis.  Of course I have long known the details but it is always helpful to be reminded of a few things from time to time.  For example,
- Hitler lost the presidential election 37%-53% in April 1932
- Hitler was appointed Chancellor in January 1933
- The Enabling Law was passed in March 1933

Hitler went from an election defeat to becoming dictator in a span of 11 months. With the right tactics, in the right environment, the bad guys can take over a country.  

Of course, electing the bad guys helps too.  Throw in a little economic misery, and this is how you lose your freedoms, lose a country, and unleash murder, mayhem and war.

Oh, and, not coincidentally, the Nazis talked about their political opponents as extremist and less than human terms.

A Sign of Things to Come?

Is this a sign of which way the wind is blowing?  I suspect this is not about Googles' "image" so much as making bets on who might be in power a few years down the road.  The finance industry, and business in general, backed candidate Barack Obama, not because he was any great shakes but because that's the way they saw the wind blowing in 2008 and they wanted to befriend emerging power.  (A terrible mistake as we now know.)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Gee, Why Is That?

Well, when you wage a campaign to label common - and patently race neutral -  words racist and teach a generation of kids that anything and everything is racist then don't be surprised when everybody thinks we're all racist.

And when "not paying for my shit" equals racism, well yes, race relations are going to suffer.

When civil rights went from moral crusade to rent-seeking industry, it was all destined to go downhill.  And clearly it has.

Smartest President EVER!!!!!

Hey, let's appoint a Greek guy to be ambassador to Norway!  Predictable results follow.

Smallest Violin Ever for Jill Abramson

I have no sympathy for whines like this from the likes of Jill Abramson.
New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson says that President Obama's White House is the "most secretive White House" that she's covered during her long tenure as a political journalist.
"I would say it is the most secretive White House that I have ever been involved in covering, and that includes — I spent 22 years of my career in Washington and covered presidents from President Reagan on up through now, and I was Washington bureau chief of the Times during George W. Bush's first term,"
The Crimes was complicit in foisting this arrogant boob on America, so they can live with it too.  You elect these kinds of shitty people and this is what you get.  QED Jill.

2014 Looks Ominous

Hey, don't look now but several major countries are now officially in economic freefall.  There is Argentina and there is Turkey

Add to that escalating social unrest in important countries, Ukraine and Thailand, on top of the ongoing messes in Egypt, Syria,  and the world is looking pretty dicey.

Remember That Mad Rush to Be In China?

If one of the biggest, savviest multi-national companies can get bamboozled in China, how the hell is China going to rise to the top of economic leadership in the world.  China is a maze where even the best and brightest of the global economy lose their bearings.  So, economically speaking, does the future belong to China?

Bezos Trades Up

We've deconstructed Ezra Klein here a few times, mostly because he has infected Bloomberg, which I stare at all day long.  I early concluded that Ezra was a mediocrity and I was bewildered at his following and vaunted status as a commentator.  The Washington Post could have done the whole "addition by subtraction thing" in getting rid of Klein but new owner Jeff Bezos appears to have done better than that, which one would expect from a bazillionaire.  David Catron outlines the trade.
But Bezos is no dummy. He didn’t earn enough money to buy one of the country’s most respected publications by making dumb decisions. Interestingly, on the same day that Klein’s departure was confirmed, the Post also announced a partnership with The Volokh Conspiracy. Eugene Volokh and his co-conspirators have been “lawblogging” since Klein was in high school, and enjoy a vast national readership. All of which suggests that, rather than committing a blunder, Bezos has traded up.
Only 117 more trades like this and the MSM might be looking at having a future.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Breaking: Margaret Carlson Still a Partisan Hack

We've done the Margaret Carlson thing here at NBfPB before.  Ugh. 

Anyway, Mag's latest is that "truthiness" is just A-OK.  Our lefty IT Girl is being "Swift-boated".  Her husband is cashing in.  So she lied, big deal, we NEED this Davis gal.  NEED her, I say.

Read it if you must.  It's gross.

OMG. Lefty It-Girl Is a Gun Nut !!

Holy Cognitive Dissonance Batman.
Revelations that her origins story has some holes in it has sent Davis’ campaign for governor into a full-blown crisis. What’s a candidate to do?
Change the subject, of course. So tonight, the AP reports that Davis is out suggesting that if she becomes the first Democrat elected governor of Texas in a generation, she would expand where Texans could concealed carry our firearms.
Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis promised Tuesday to veto a state income tax to pay for public schools and expand where people may carry handguns, while her campaign attempted to move past allegations she misled people while telling her life story.
In an interview with The Associated Press, the Democratic state senator from Fort Worth also reiterated her refusal to discuss the volatile end to her second marriage to Jeff Davis, which led to allegations of infidelity and a temporary restraining order against her.
Tax cuts?  Guns?  I wonder how this is going to play with all those coastal lefty elites that she is fundraising from.  Actually, it'll play just fine, because they know that she is LYING, just like they knew Barack Obama was lying about 80% of the things he said on the campaign trail.

Wow. McArdle Says O-Care Is Kaput

Do not take this lightly. 

Megan McArdle is arguably the most informed and intelligent writer analyzing ObamaCare today (competing with Avik Roy for that title) and she is no right-winger*.  And she's kaput.
In a nutshell, Obamacare has so far fallen dramatically short of what was expected -- technically, and in almost every other way. Enrollment is below expectations: According to the data we have so far, more than half of the much-touted Medicaid expansion came from people who were already eligible before the health-care law passed, and this weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported that the overwhelming majority of people buying insurance through the exchanges seem to be folks who already had insurance. Coverage is less generous than many people expected, with narrower provider networks and higher deductibles. The promised $2,500 that the average family was told they could save on premiums has predictably failed to materialize. And of course, we now know that if you like your doctor and plan, there is no reason to think you can keep them. Which is one reason the law has not gotten any more popular since it passed.
The administration and its supporters have been counting on the coverage expansion to put Obamacare beyond repeal. So what if the coverage expansion is anemic, the plans bare-bones, the website sort of a disaster? It’s a foundation upon which we can build -- and now that so many people have coverage, the thinking goes, Republicans will never dare to touch it. The inevitable problems can be fixed down the road.
But it’s far from clear that this is true. The law is unpopular, not only with voters, but also apparently with the consumers who are supposed to buy insurance. The political forces that were supposed to guarantee its survival look weaker by the day. The Barack Obama administration is in emergency mode, pasting over political problems with administrative fixes of dubious legality, just to ensure the law’s bare survival -- which is now their incredibly low bar for “success.”
 Read the whole thing.

* In my opinion, she actually desires to sympathize with left wing policy but is reigned in from this by her hyper-analytical nature and deep background in economics and finance.  Translation:  She wants to like ObamaCare, but, alas, can't because it is an offense to logic and rationality and that is her stock in trade.

Global Warming Still Dead

The main obstacle for environmentalists to achieve their global warming policy goals is that developing nations don't want to hinder their growth into much richer, developed nations.  Brazil is the poster child.  Here is what I wrote a while back.
Hey global warmists, I know you are all energized (or filled with dread and signing up in droves for vasectomies) by the release of the AR5, but this is another nail in your coffin.  Brazil sees extracting this oil as their "space program."  They named their largest oil field after a leftist former president.  They're borrowing hundreds of billions from the Chinese to tap this oil.

Let me repeat.  There will be NO global policy action to address climate change.  Ever.
Well, the latest out of Brazil is that they intend on spending another $150 billion on oil exploration over the next few years.
Exploration and production will receive nearly two-thirds of the 2013-2017 investment budget at $147.5 billion, Petrobras said. The emphasis will be on installing new platforms, with 11 new production units expected to come onstream between 2013 and 2015. Crude-oil output is expected to reach 2.75 MMbopd by 2017, Petrobras said. By 2020, crude-oil output is expected to hit 4.2 MMbopd.
Do these global warming losers really think that the nation of Brazil is going to spend all these billions and then support policy that will make it harder for them to pay it all back and even make a return on that massive investment? 

This is on top of that other small problem - nobody believes in global warming anymore.

Why Would a Savvy CEO Tweak the Obama Admin Over O-Care?

AETNA CEO Mark Bertolini gives a not so glowing review of ObamaCare.  It's shifted people around rather than turn the uninsured into the insured, and adverse selection is going to be a big problem.
CEO Mark Bertolini told CNBC on Wednesday that Obamacare has failed to attract the uninsured, and he offered a scenario in which the insurance company could be forced to pull out of program.
"Are they going to be double-digit [increases] or are we going to get beat up because they're double-digit or are we just going to have to pull out of the program?" Bertolini asked in a "Squawk Box" interview from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. "Those questions can't be answered until we see the population we have today. And we really don't have a good view on that."

He said that so far, Obamacare has just shifted people who were insured in the individual market to the public exchanges where they could get a better deal on a subsidy for coverage. "We see only 11 percent of the population is actually people that were firmly uninsured that are now insured. So [it] didn't really eat into the uninsured population."
I suspect that Kathleen Sebelius and/or some of her thuggish minions will be giving Mr. Bertolini a call, and might even get a nice personal tax audit from the IRS.  'Don't be so cynical, you say?'  The WSJ has a story today on the thuggishness of mild-mannered-looking Turbo Tax Timmy.

Of course, no savvy CEO would ever stick his neck out like this and tweak a sensitive, defensive administration that has been known to resort to thuggish tactics.  There must be something to this. Maybe Mr. Bertolini is looking to get out of ObamaCare or looking to bait the administration into something.

Cop Shoots Cop in No-Knock Raid

No-knock raids and SWAT tactics finally backfire on hyper-militarized cops.
A BART police officer was fatally shot by a fellow officer Tuesday afternoon during a probation search in the East Bay, according to the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office.
KRON has confirmed that the officer, Tom Smith, 42, a 20-year veteran of the BART police department, was killed in the incident.
It was a probation check?  Why not call first?

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Update On New Realities for Global Investors

Hey, I think I recall making some, not quite predictions, but observations as to the new reality that investors particularly (but by no means exclusively) ought to pay attention to.

One had something to with broke and uncompetitive countries abandoning expensive and inefficient climate change policies in favor of energy that works and bolsters competitiveness.  Yeah, something like that.
Global Warming Is Dead - From a policy perspective that is.  The climate will do what it does but there ain't gonna be a re-ordering of the global economy cooked up by the warmists.  If you've been scared out of energy investments by the incessant bleating of global warmists, you've got to get back in.  The world needs energy and it can't afford phony energy, so get invested in energy that works.  So don't invest in solar or wind or any of that garbage (if any of it does turn out to actually work, the Exxons of the world will wind up owning it ultimately anyway).  Furthermore, those in thrall to the religion of climate change will wake up; expect Europe to drastically improve its competitiveness by jettisoning decades of wrong-headed warmist policy.
Now there is this.
The EU's reputation as a model of environmental responsibility may soon be history. The European Commission wants to forgo ambitious climate protection goals and pave the way for fracking -- jeopardizing Germany's touted energy revolution in the process. 
I also observed this.

The Future Does Not Belong to China - China will do fine, but they will have major challenges and multiple hiccups on the way from a cheap labor, export driven economy to a domestic consumption economy.  Also, to believe that the future is Chinese, you need to believe that something like 250,000 elderly communists can successfully plan and manage an $8.4 trillion economy for the benefit of 1.3 trillion people.  No way.  If leadership doesn't screw it up, China will grow acceptably but always be an economic follower.  If they screw it up, well, China explodes.  Heads China loses, tails they tie.  Bad bet.
Now there is this.

Is China's Historic Credit Bubble About to Pop?

In five years, China's shadow banks have increased credit from 120 to 190 percent of GDP—a bigger run-up than the U.S. housing bubble. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Double Ouch

More embarrassing commentary on The Lightworker's foreign policy.  It is worth noting that these are not raw political enemies, these are people that expected to work with us.  I think this is correct but maybe these Brits don't understand the extent to which Obama loathes his own country and seeks to break it away from it past role in the world...

Also, I can't imagine the NYT means this in complimentary way...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Lightworker With Second Incredibly Lame Economic Initiative In As Many Weeks

The Lightworker has announced two of the lamest economic proposals in the history of the republic in as many weeks.  Last week was the laughable "Promise Zones", today comes "manufacturing innovation institutes."  I can guarantee you, that whatever these institutes are slated to do, there are already numerous existing entities already doing it.  This will have zero impact on jobs and the economy.  Zero.

Dear Leader has beaten the economy into a pulp and now has absolutely nothing to offer, either though ignorance, ideology or simply lack of desire to do anything.  There is a glimmer of hope in this utter surrender.  It means that Obama is marginal to the economy, to which we were always trending, but it is good news that we've arrived there.

Will Bill Keller Go Gently?

Let's be sure to remind Bill Keller about "going gently" and saving us all some bucks when he or his loved ones get sick.

Anti-Energy Zealot Crows About Energy Boom He Worked to Thwart

Look who is crowing about America's energy boom.  Unbelievable.  Nothing this guy has ever said, done or thought is in any way contributory to America's energy boom.  In fact, the energy boom would be even greater if it were not for this man's direct handiwork and the ongoing handiwork of those similarly-minded.

I'm glad he's admitting reality, but the thought of him and his ilk somehow taking credit for this is insulting.  If you want to know who is responsible for America's energy boom, read this book.

Funny That: Somali Piracy Down Without Addressing "Root Causes"

Maritime piracy is yet another scourge for which the namby-pambies of the world reflexively claim can't be addressed without addressing "root causes."  In Somalia's case, the ninnies focus on political stability in Somalia as the root cause that is the necessary condition for fixing the problem.  Sure, it'd be great if Somalia was politically stable, but that at best isn't happening in the short term and at worst it's a pipe dream.  In the meantime, illiterate bands of dirt poor Somalis are interrupting global commerce sometimes capturing $100 million ships with $200 million of oil. 

Well, after a sputtering beginning, where saner heads let the root causes crowd have too much of the say, we've gotten a handle on the problem using common sense and time-tested strategies and tactics.  Piracy off the coast of Somalia is way down and it had nothing to do with addressing the root causes, it was done raising the cost of piracy by introducing the prospect of failure, imprisonment and/or death. 
“The single biggest reason for the drop in worldwide piracy is the decrease in Somali piracy off the coast of East Africa,” said Pottengal Mukundan, IMB director.  The presence of international navies and security guards are the main factors"

International navies patrolling the waters and security teams aboard ships (translation: good guys with guns) have made a serious dent in the problem, and it needs to be noted that Somalia remains a politically unstable craphole.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Courts Whack Obama FCC Over Net Neutrality...Again

Many moons ago, I described how lefties were pushing for something called "net neutrality" which was nothing more than their typical collectivist urge molded into federal communications policy.

Obama's FCC lost once in the courts but persisted anyway using a quite dubious justification for imposing net neutrality, which is consistent with the whole tenor of the Obama administration, which is 'we will do it regardless of legal considerations, let alone prudential ones'.  Fred Barnes calls it "Democrats at ramming speed."

Well anyway, the courts have delivered yet another blow to net neutrality.
Verizon Communications Inc. won its challenge to U.S. open-Internet regulations as an appeals court ruled against the Federal Communications Commission, saying the agency’s restrictions have no basis in federal law.
The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington today sent the rules back to the FCC, which may attempt to rewrite the regulations that bar companies from slowing or blocking some Internet traffic.
The FCC is trying to regulate Verizon and other companies that supply broadband Internet service under a statute that doesn’t apply, according to Circuit Judge David Tatel, writing for a three-judge panel.
“Given that the commission has chosen to classify broadband providers in a manner that exempts them from treatment as common carriers, the Communications Act expressly prohibits the commission from nonetheless regulating them as such,” Tatel wrote.
He's a prediction - like the honey badger, the O administration don't care, they're gonna come back at this and continue to try to jam it on the industry.  Ramming speed...again! 

In all walks of life, this is what we have, at least for three more years.  Enjoy it, good and hard, America.

Double the Embarrassment!

The Lightworker's foreign policy gets double the embarrassment today as Iran boasts of running circles around the Obama administration on the nuclear deal, and Israeli Defense Minister lets the world know what an ass John Kerry is.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Germany Energy Follies Continue

I've discussed Germany's energy policy fail before.  Time for a revisit with a little editorializing to boot.

Famous British Labor politician Aneurin Bevan once dismissed the possibility of radical unionism hurting Britain's coal industry by saying " “This island is made mainly of coal and surrounded by fish. Only an organizing genius could produce a shortage of coal and fish at the same time.

Of course, Labor policies went on to produce exactly that before Margaret Thatcher had to right the ship.  And some make the argument that such organizational genius is back in Britain.

In Germany however, it seems fairly indisputable that the organizational geniuses are hard at work.  In Germany there are no higher purposes than to maintain the competitiveness of it world-class manufacturing driven economy and to be as assiduously green as all right-thinking Euro greens.  Amazingly though, it has come to pass that Germany has engineered a rise in costs for its manufacturers as well as exploding emissions due to the rampant burning of coal.  Coal in Europe, you say?  Yes, and not just coal, extra-special dirty lignite coal.  Behold the organizational genius at work.
Germany produced more energy by coal last year than it has in nearly a quarter century. King Coal’s return comes courtesy of the energiewende—the policy put in place following the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The plan was to phase out the country’s numerous nuclear reactors and jumpstart its fledgling renewable energy industry, but coal has been forced to fill the gap. The FT reports:
Germany, which is the world’s largest brown coal miner, last year used the fuel–also known as lignite–to generate 162bn kilowatt-hours of electricity, according to EnergieBilanz, an electricity industry association. That is up from 161bn kWh in 2012 and the highest total since the 171bn kWh recorded in 1990, when east Germany’s ex-Communist plants were still in full flow.
As far as sources of energy go, coal is about as brown as it gets—especially the variety of coal being mined and burned in Germany. It’s no surprise, then, that Berlin’s increasing reliance on it is having an effect on its overall emissions:
Germany’s carbon dioxide emissions, which rose from 917m tonnes in 2011 to 931m tonnes in 2012, are estimated to show an increase of 20m tonnes when figures are tallied for last year.
Let’s reflect on what Germany’s energiewende has wrought: Electricity prices are significantly higher, thanks to the costs of the feed-in tariffs Berlin enacted to help spur solar and wind energy production. Those costs are so high that Germany’s Minister of Economics is now publicly warning that the country’s energy-intensive industry might jump ship for cheaper prices (say, in shale gas-rich America) if prices climb much higher. Yet for all that expense and all of that effort, German emissions continue to climb.
By either metric—green or economic—this energiewende has been a flop. That’s not surprising, given the costs of propping up renewables that can’t compete on price with fossil fuels, as well as the difficulty of replacing nuclear, which was effectively a zero-carbon energy source. Germany’s experience is a warning to other policymakers of the dangers of placing green dreams ahead of common sense.


( – The number of employed women 16 and over declined by 20,000 from November to December, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The number of women employed dropped from 67,882,000 in November to 67,862,000 in December.
Additionally, the number of women who are not in the labor force climbed to a record high of 55,028,000 last month. That was up slightly from the 55,026,000 women who were not in the labor force in October, and up 203,000 from 54,825,000 women who were not in the labor force in November.
But if we don't borrow money from the Chinese to buy the Sandra Flukes of America birth control we are waging a WAR ON WOMEN!!  A WAR, I tell you!  Killing!  Despoiling!  Pillaging!

Daft Logic and Bad Advice: Hey, Don't Get Married. It's Not the Silver Bullet that Conservatives Don't Even Claim It To Be

CNN has an odd social-sciencey rebuttal to the claim, made often by those on the political right, that people can avoid poverty by doing three things:  graduating from high school, getting married before having children, and getting a job.  First, the claim always purports that these behaviors are, if not coequal, valuable in varied combination.  No one makes the claim that marriage is a silver bullet.  Still, that is the assumption CNN makes and gives us one Stephanie Coontz to trash marriage.

As one would expect from CNN, the argument is weak and the economics are particularly bad.  The author has to shoot around the edges of the claim because you will rarely find an aspect of social science with such decisive empirical weight behind it.  Statistically, people who do these three things avoid poverty to a vastly greater degree than those who don't.  It's not really disputable, which is why perhaps Ms. Coontz resorts to some pretty flimsy logic and spends most of the article advocating the policy playbook straight out of central casting - living wages, government spending, district leveling, even sex ed - rather than talking about her central claim

First, as mentioned, the author sets up the straw man marriage is a silver bullet, which is easily shot down.  The assumption that marriage cures poverty is a daft one and no one makes it.  You don't say "I do" and magically emerge from poverty.  Marriage is important like the other two factors and helps people emerge from poverty because it instills habits and mindsets that are consistent with prospering.  Coontz goes off on some tangents about not enough men to marry because too many are in prison, but the real bad economics are front and center.
Seriously? Have any of these pundits and politicians talked to any people who have lost their jobs in the past 15 years?
I don't know who the pundits are talking to, but clearly Coontz is isn't talking or studying such people either.  Marriage is precisely the best situation to ameliorate a job loss situation.  First, you have the earning power of the spouse to act as a buffer. Secondly, people typically derive support in hard times from extended family.  Being married usually means any individual has double the support resources available to them to cope with temporary or more than temporary job loss.  This is the basic economics of the family structure the world over and throughout time.

Then there are some hoary chestnuts of the left, like this.
a majority of American families have seen their real wages stagnate or decline over the past 30 years, even as they increased their involvement in paid labor.
Let's repeat this again for the economics-challenged - wages do not equal compensation.  Wages may not have gone up, but total compensation has gone up, handily in fact.  When you work you get take home pay, benefits such as healthcare coverage or retirement contributions, paid time off, and maybe job training.  Add up all the things of value you get for working (including unnoticed things like safer working conditions) and workers are doing better all the time.  Sure it would be nice to have more take home pay, but we as a society have enacted policies to deemphasize cash compensation.  We could easily go the other way with better tax policy but we don't.

Then there are some plain old head-scratchers, which I associate with being in the academic bubble for too long.
But nonmarriage is often a result of poverty and economic insecurity rather than a cause.
Huh?  Candidates for marriage are generally young and starting out in life.  This means relative poverty by definition.  Unemployed or low wage earning young adults shun marriage?  Really?  Poppycock.  Young adults seek marriage to alleviate or provide a buffer to these situations.  Millions of young adults seek and find spouses everyday and have for decades despite relatively poverty to society at large.  (Or at least they used to.  Don't make a hash of economic logic just because a new generation of youth have more self-centered priorities.)

And here is a fun rhetorical trick.
Almost 36% of American's impoverished children -- 5.9 million kids -- live with married parents. If we include low-income families -- people who are just one missed pay check, one illness or one divorce away from poverty -- the figure rises to nearly 50%.
I am highly skeptical of that number, but even so, the 36% means that 64% live with non-married parents!  So after hiding a big number that refutes her argument with a small number that seems to be consistent with what she's saying, Coontz invites you speculate that number into a theoretically higher number - they're not poor, but they could be poor!

There is one point that Coontz gets exactly right.
Unemployment, low wages and poverty discourage family formation and erode family stability, making it less likely that individuals will marry in the first place and more likely that their marriages will dissolve.
Some people just can't get any traction and remain mired in unemployment and low wage jobs.  So yes, if you can't get it together in that respect you're probably not going to be successful in marriage either. 

But for most people, getting married, and being committed to the structure that it creates, sets the conditions for prospering and avoiding poverty.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

America Has Gone Nuts

The fewest percentage of Americans are working since 1978, Al Qaeda controls more territory in the Middle East than it ever has, Dennis Rodman is galavanting around North Korea, and the President of the United States is taking the Little Sisters of the Poor to court.

America has fallen.

Blood for Oil Update

At long last, 10 years after Dick Cheney kicked off a war to trade American blood for Iraqi oil, the oil is finally Vladimir Putin.
MOSCOW, Jan 9 (Reuters) – Gazprom Neft, the oil-producing arm of top Russian gas firm Gazprom, said it had produced first oil in well-testing at its Badra oilfield in Iraq and planned to start commercial production there this year.
"With well testing completed we are one step closer to beginning commercial production at the Badra field," Vadim Yakovlev, Gazprom Neft first deputy chief executive, said in a statement on Thursday.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

How to Destroy Race Relations

I am not overly sanguine about the direction of race relations in the US as I have stated.  Let me clarify that exactly - I think the state of race relations are relatively good and the historical achievements in race relations have been monumental.  Where we've come and where we are are not the problem.  Where I despair is the direction of race relations from where we are today. 

Why?  Mostly because the racial grievance industry, which is intimately tied up in politics, appears intent on destroying race relations in this country.  It's mostly about rent-seeking now - who gets jobs, who gets money.  Here is an example freshly plucked from the newsosphere.  If we're living in a world where black people get to claim an indignity every time a non-black person gets a job or a black person or group doesn't get a desired goody, relations are bound to go south.  Bald, racially based rent-seeking is more than off-putting, it engenders animosity and, ultimately, countervailing rent-seeking.  The result is a racially based knock-down-drag-out for resources.  That destroys civil society.  Guys like this lawmaker in Georgia are bringing that about.

Ailes Brings Out Classic Lefty Pathologies

I'm reading Charles Krauthammer's new book (which is really great) and in the last day or so I read one of the pieces in it that talks about the all the leftists who simply can't take conservatives arguments in good faith because they just know that we are all evil.  This is betrayed by the occasional admission by a lefty that they once met a conservative or Republican who wasn't all that bad (you know, he went at least a couple hours without biting the head off a puppy or starving a small child!).

We have a modest example of the genre in the reporting on the new book about Roger Ailes.  The Hollywood Reporter:

"Warm and droll for a man often vilified by Hollywood liberals..."

He's warm!  Holy shit, no way!

As if following the formula for the required lefty media blind spots, THR goes on:

He's "divisive."  Um, no, he's not, he's merely broken off from the ideologically monolithic news business.  Fox News is normal, what a news organization ought to be, rather than all the rest, which are hopelessly off the reservation and have been for years.

Fox News "isn't known for change."  (Let's ignore the fact that Fox News just instituted some substantial changes.)  Why is change an intrinsic good?  In business, when you are kicking your competition's ass all over the playing field, change should not be a priority.  When winning requires change, then change, until then, don't mess with what's working beautifully.

It's a standard of the genre.  We're going to approach the cage of this conservative, let's proceed with caution because they're all the things that we elitists think are bad (and that we never exhibit) - inflexible, controversial, divisive.  We don't understand for a moment how such a person could be successful (after all he hired Sarah Palin), but, inexplicably, they are and so we are required to write about it once in a while.  Shockingly, we found our subject to be rather normal, with an actual family that we presume is not a Potemkin ruse (because us Hollywood people are exemplars of familial bliss).

Too funny.

Do We Have Another Foundational Lie of the Obama Era?

It was obvious from the beginning, given the utter lameness of the "You Tube video" lie foisted on the public as the root cause of the attack on the US annex in Benghazi that resulted in the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.  For smart and calculating people to come up with such a ham-handed whopper of an excuse was telling - they had something to hide at all costs. 

Since then, they've pulled out all the stops to keep the Benghazi scandal under wraps. But why?  Incompetence?  Who cares?  This administration is incompetent at nearly everything it does but that didn't stop it from getting re-elected.  The public has a very high tolerance for incompetence. To protect Hillary?  Maybe, but Hillary's run is several years off, people will forget.  The public has a very short memory.  So, both of these potential excuses has always been unsatisfying to me as reasons not to come clean and move on.

But now we have what might be the nugget behind the secrecy at all costs.
According to the Washington Post, U.S. officials suspect that a former Guantanamo Bay detainee played a role in the attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi. The U.S. government is said to be planning to designate the group he leads as a foreign terrorist organization.
The terrorist and former Gitmo detainee in question is Abu Sufian bin Qumu, leader of Ansar al-Sharia in the Libyan city of Darnah. Witnesses reportedly have told American officials that Qumu’s men were in Benghazi before the attack on Sept. 11, 2012. And three American officials told the Post that these men participated in the attack.
A totem of the left and of the rise of Barack Obama was the notion that we were imprisoning people in Guantanamo Bay for no reason.  That it was an arbitrary and inhumane exercise in US arrogance and cruelty.   Never once did the left even consider the Bush administration logic that these were proven dangerous men and that if released they would simply go back to targeting Americans for attack.  The whole effort to regain power for the left, most notably in the person of Barack Obama, was grounded on accusations of bad faith in the extreme, and Guantanamo Bay was the symbol.  Everything that was wrong with the Bush administration, Republicans, and America in general was neatly summarized in the detention of those poor souls in Guantanamo.

And, if this story turns out to be true, it was all a lie, a machination to demonize the correct and judicious decisions of the Bush administration, which were motivated by American national security interests.  Lying about intelligent and principled decisions over important matters of national security for the sole purpose of shifting political power.  That borders on treason.  And yet that was the very foundation of the last five years in American governance.

Disgusting doesn't even come close.

Eric Holder, Secretary of Education

I missed it, but apparently Eric Holder was appointed Secretary of Education.
The Obama administration is issuing new recommendations on classroom discipline that seek to end the apparent disparities in how students of different races are punished for violating school rules.

Civil rights advocates have long said that a "school-to-prison" pipeline stems from overly zealous school discipline policies targeting black and Hispanic students that bring them out of school and into the court system.

Attorney General Eric Holder said the problem often stems from well intentioned "zero-tolerance" policies that too often inject the criminal justice system into the resolution of problems. Zero tolerance policies, a tool that became popular in the 1990s, often spell out uniform and swift punishment for offenses such as truancy, smoking or carrying a weapon. Violators can lose classroom time or become saddled with a criminal record.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Bad Ole Days NYC Nostalgia Is Still Really Dumb

Michael Moynihan has made a full-length article out of the same notion that I ranted about some time ago - that nostalgia for when NYC sucked big time is crazy.
Ask yourself, why did New York (New York Fucking City!) elect a hard-ass, Republican prosecutor whose only real campaign plank seemed to be an animus toward "Squeegee Men" as mayor?  After two terms of that guy, who they bitched about to no end, why did they elect a prissy arrogant finance guy?  Why?  Why?  And why?  Because living in a broke-ass, shithole where the dregs of society rule the streets is not long term fun.  Like I said, it has its short term frisson, especially for transplants from the rest of the country who want to prove to Ma and Pa that they can make it in the world (or just piss Ma and Pa the hell off), but it sucks to think that you're hunkering down for a decade or more to do battle in the Land of the Drug-Addled, Crime-Prone Misfit Toys.

Guns vs. Healthcare...Again

I've run through the numbers and made a case study of Maryland's experience in signing up enrollees for ObamaCare versus those self-same citizens signing up for gun permits.  Now, Illinois is getting in on the game of being a social laboratory.

Monday, January 06, 2014

Told You So: CleanTech Edition

I don't watch 60 Minutes anymore, but apparently they did a segment called The Cleantech Crash, highlighting the futility and boondoggleishness of government spending on alternative energy in an effort to combat putative global warming.  Steve at Powerline says that venture capitalist Vinod Khosla "comes in for some especially heavy weather."

I saw this coming a mile away.  Khosla came in for some heavy weather here at NBfPB back when no one was listening or cared.  Here and here too.
Long ago, when George W. Bush said "ethanol from wood chips and switchgrass", I said "God help us." I even said to beware of slick venture capitalists with Democratic ties, like Vinod Khosla, looking to grease their bets with taxpayer cash.
No one is still listening and no one still cares, but at least I get to say I told you so.

Friday, January 03, 2014

Renowned Economics Duo: We're Screwed

Famous economists very often come out and say stuff that I've already said here on NBfPB.  Like Nobel prize winner Robert Lucas for instance.

So remember when I said that we are broke and are going to start repudiating our liabilities through financial repression, inflation and outright repudiation of debts???  (Here too.)  Well, superstar economists Ken Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart are saying it too.
Many advanced economies are likely to require financial repression, outright debt restructuring, higher inflation and a variety of capital controls, a new research paper commissioned by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned.

The magnitude of today's debt in Western economies will mean fiscal austerity will not be sufficient, Harvard economists Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff said in the report, as policymakers continue to underestimate the depth and duration of the downturn.
 Happy Friday!

The Few, The Proud...

The Lacking In Upper Body Strength.

Call your recruiter today.

Breaking: Obamacare Is Even Worse Than We Thought

What is it?  I don't know, but that is what I interpret this news to be about.
The Obama administration on Friday proposed two new executive actions to make it easier for states to provide mental health information to the national background check system, wading back into the gun control debate after a months-long hiatus.
Policies have been cancelled by the millions, people are experiencing ObamaCare sticker shock, and now we are into 2014 where the actual rubber of OCare meets the road, so let's talk about...guns!

Or squirrels for that matter.  Same thing.

Government Geniuses: Holey Moley, Moving Oil By Train Can Be Dangerous!

Hey, have I said that transporting crude oil via pipeline is vastly safer than transporting it by rail?  Yes, I did.  Did I point out that Obama's refusal to sign off on the Keystone XL pipeline was a) crazy and b) coincidentally highly beneficial to his frequent ballyhooer Warren Buffett?  Yes I did.

Did this insane and repulsive instance of cronyism finally come home to roost?

Yes it did.

But rest assured, government is on the case.  They have officially told us that, whoa, shipping oil by rail is dangerous.

Cooking As Post-Feminist Signaling for Marriagable Women...???

This is so true.
“One of the effects of feminism is that men of my generation have had a much wider opportunity to cook. I can’t think of any men my age or younger who don’t know how to cook. Moreover, I can’t think of any men of my generation or younger who don’t enjoy cooking. This is in stark contrast to the women of the same generations, who (typically) view cooking as an indignity. The reason for the difference in attitude boils down to what cooking is all about. Cooking is an act of love, an act of service to others. It is an opportunity to care for others in a very fundamental way, to literally nourish them through the work of your own hands. This is precisely what troubles the modern woman so much about cooking (or cleaning, or changing diapers). Serving others in the mind of a feminist is an indignity.”
I love to cook.  I started cooking because, well, I like to eat and I applied the basic common sense principle of "if you want something done right, do it yourself."  Cooking is practical.  It's also cheaper than having someone do it for you; and, if you so desire, it presents a world of opportunities to learn and challenges to conquer.  For these and other reasons cooking is, in fact, completely suited to the male sensibility.  At least to me, cooking and maleness go hand in hand.  And now that I have children I enjoy cooking even more as an activity I can share with my kids.  Some of my best quality time with the Baseball tykes is in the kitchen whipping up some tasty morsels.

I, however, wouldn't chalk up men's newfound affinity for cooking necessarily to feminism.  That may be part of it, but the growth of our economy, our vastly greater productivity and the expansion of leisure time are are major contributors too.  Men cook because of their wives' work schedule, yes, but they also cook because their jobs require less physical stress and/or less time away from the home and they are more productive at work.

Although, I agree wholeheartedly with the author that feminism has done a useful service by identifying the women who are constitutionally averse to small acts of kindness.  (I would never insist that a woman cook for me, but if a woman refused to cook for me at all, I'd think she's kind of a bitch.)  Feminism, having freed great numbers of women from being forced into a lifetime of cooking, has freed these same women to express more discernably who they are to potential mates.  For men seeking wives, it used to be "Can she cook?"  Now, the much more valuable question is "Will she cook?"  For women, I won't comment on whether this is a better state of affairs.  On the other hand, men, who would have otherwise married those women for whom the answer to the latter question is "no," are certainly better off.

The Economist Bucks Up Pols Scared to Remove Green Subsidies

Last year, The Economist, the repository of elite European economic opinion retreated with honored from the battle over global warming or climate change or climate chaos or whatevs.  

Now, they are helpfully preparing the terrain for European policymakers to cease wasting precious fiscal resources on idiotic green subsidies.  Via WRM.
[O]ffshore wind power is staggeringly expensive. Dieter Helm, an economist at Oxford University, describes it as “among the most expensive ways of marginally reducing carbon emissions known to man”. Under a subsidy system unveiled late in 2013, the government guarantees farms at sea £155 ($250) per megawatt hour for their juice. That is three times the current wholesale price of electricity and about 60% more than is promised to onshore turbines…
Ten-metre waves and salty gales are just two of the hazards that keep offshore costs high. Second-world-war bombs on the seabed are slowing new projects in Germany; in December Scottish Power, an energy firm, scrapped plans for 300 turbines on a site filled with basking sharks.
Translation:  Hey politicians, you are now free to abandon this idiotic subsidy policy and use the money for something else, with full cover knowing that we will help to make this acceptable opinion in elite circles.

Readers of NBfPB know that I have declared the global warming policy movement dead and that part and parcel of that will be Europe's retreat from much of its green agenda-driven policy.  The trick is doing this without giving the smart set the vapors.  This is easily done as the smart set are easily molded.  Thus The Economist is doing the necessary work of leading elites to where they need to go.

Dangerous World

Hey, remember when I said that Obama's weakness would bring about chaos on the global geo-political scene?  Remember, first in 2010 and again last July.  Yesterday the WSJ tallied up the disorder scorecard and Dan Henninger pleaded for an end to amateur hour.

Obama's fecklessness would be funny if it weren't so dangerous.  Plan accordingly.

ObamaCare Anti-Child? Again?

Can't add a newborn baby to your ObamaCare policy? 
There's another quirk in the Obama administration's new health insurance system: It lacks a way for consumers to quickly and easily update their coverage for the birth of a baby and other common life changes.
With regular private insurance, parents just notify the health plan. Insurers will still cover new babies, the administration says, but parents will also have to contact the government at some point later on.
Right now the website can't handle such updates.
It's a reminder that the new coverage for many uninsured Americans comes with a third party in the mix: the feds. And the system's wiring for some vital federal functions isn't yet fully connected.
Some will be tempted to call this a "glitch," but it ain't the first time we've seen ObamaCare being unfriendly to people who want to have children.   Of course, we al know that truly committed progressives hate children, so it must be asked again...feature or bug?

Men Are Obsolete ... If You Don't Need Food, Shelter, Mobility, Tradable Goods or Sanitation

The ridiculous Hanna Rosin and the ridiculous Time magazine, which publishes this drivel, have declared men obsolete.

Really?  Let's imagine a world without these obsolete men...

Like going places?  Sorry, no planes.  Women don't design 'em, build 'em and there are too few who can fly 'em.  Trains?  Nope, mostly it's all men that make the trains run.  Cars?  Yeah, women do help put them together but almost no women design and engineer them.  Wouldn't be many cars to get around in if we left it to the gals.  Roads too.  Do you know any women macadamizers?  Not many of those around.  The roads would get pretty bumpy after a while relying on the gals to lay hot asphalt.

Like a roof over your head?  Not many gals in the construction biz.  From track homes to skyscrapers, there wouldn't be much in the way of structures we could occupy if we left these tasks to the gals.  Want any wood in that house of yours?  Nary a member of the fairer sex to be seen in the lumber industry.

Food?  Yeah women help out, but do they want to take over the ranching business, or the chicken farm,  or the grain acreage without some serious help from the menfolk?  Doubt it.  We're all gonna get pretty thin now that men are obsolete.

Like foreign things?  How do they get to these shores (mostly)?  Ships.  Know how many women captain and crew one of these?  Industry-wide, it's effectively zero.

Like running water?  You need to dig some reservoirs and canals, dig and fit giant underground aqueducts, build filtration plants, install pumps, pipes and valves.  I don't see alot of women doing these things.  If you do, show me where they are.

There's alot that women do and they do it well, and we should all be thankful.  However, it is truly amazing how much of modern life women have, effectively, no part in bringing about.  Sure, they run colleges, soda companies, hospitals, and websites, and sit in legislatures and write books and alot of cool stuff.  But they're able to do these things because men pave the roads, build the cars, drill and pump the oil, build and fly the planes, weld and pilot giant ships, work the cranes, grow the food, rustle the cattle, build the homes and ... plow the snow (why am I thinking of that just now?).

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Scuttlebutt from Down on the Plantation

So I did a quick canvass of some of my typical - and typically crazy - NYC associates who are, for me, barometers of NYC political leftism.  These are folks for whom Barack Obama inspires all manner of warm, fuzzy, tingly feelings (and who would gladly accept him as King for life of America), who think that Paul Ryan is a raging, right-wing, baby-killing hatemonger, and who undoubtedly would brave the swim to France if faced with the prospect of President Sarah Palin.  In other words, classic NYC elitist leftards.

What did I learn?  Based on the inauguration scene, they are none to pleased with their new mayor.  DeBlasio strikes them as phony and an a**hole.  There is some serious buyer's remorse setting in and hopes rising that he proves an ineffective nonevent.


Too few data points to conclude anything solid, but I'll keep my eyes and ears open for more scuttlebutt down here on the plantation.

UPDATE:  It was even too much for the New York Times.  Bloomberg should have stood up and left.

Your Welcome

The Good Professor rightly points out that it was an enormously carbon-intensive effort that went into saving all those global warmists stranded in Antarctica. 

It is further worth noting that the infrastructure, personnel and training that went into the rescue is in place by virtue of the global maritime shipping and offshore energy exploration industries - two not so favorite things in the minds of global warmists.

Your welcome.

2014 Off to Totally Unpredictable and Shocking Start

Perusing the stories of the day:

- Even marginal celebrities feel enormously entitled to rain down arrogance and complaints.

- Leftist academic mediocrities in marginal disciplines at hopelessly bankrupt institutions hate white people who believe in the constitution of the United States of America.

- Cold weather hinders message of global warming.

- Unpopular administration talks out of its ass about unpopular law's specific unconstitutional provisions.

- Strange and unintended ingredients show up in products of Chinese origin.

Yup, 2014 is turning out to be a real head-scratcher.