Meandering Linkage for May 30

May 30, 2007

This old dear, a Type II V-Dub (pictured) still pulls yeoman’s duty in Alameda, CA… and it was made the same year I was!

A presidential candidate sketches on a cocktail napkin, and someone tries to flog it on eBay.  Somehow, I don’t think the proceeds will go to his campaign.

The bees, the bees, the bees. What’s going on with the bees? Probably the same culprit responsible for global warming, the peak oil crisis, the real estate bubble, and Cheney’s war folly in Iraq. Yes, that’s right, Mr. Ignorance, I see you lurking back there! You’re outed!

Speaking of Peak Oil, let’s see a show of hands: how many people out there think the price of gasoline is high because it is in short supply? Uh-huh. How many think it’s because of slowing production? MMmm-K. What about taxes- how many think the four dollars per gallon we shall soon be paying might be due to taxation? Really? I’m not surprised. What do you think about market lag- any noticeable effect? And lastly, what do you think about ethanol- that mixing costly ethanol dilutes combustive energy, who thinks this might explain the surge in price? Anybody? OK, well, I see, we’re going need to edumacate y’all… again.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the lone female voice of the supreme court, and she’s sounding more and more like a voice in the wilderness. She is at least speaking up about decisions the court has allowed to squeak by with a slim margin. Shame it doesn’t have the same affect as the signing statements Clueless makes when he doesn’t veto a law- he just says he won’t enforce it. Dereliciton of duty for Clueless, anyone? And still, Silent Clancy never utters a word, just uses his rubber stamp.

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May 29 After a 50% Longer Weekend

May 29, 2007

What is Good for Goose is so for Gander
As this article from USA Today points out, our nation’s deficit is larger than reported.

How is that possible?

Because the same accounting standards that are legislated for corporations are not followed by your US gummint, that’s how.

Clueless Bush realized if he couldn’t make a play to disable social security, he’d take it out laterally when he nuked the economy.

A very sobering, straightforward article for these drunken, crooked times.

So in a nutshell: Medicare and Social Security are not true liabilities “because government can cancel or cut them.”

That’s your sacrifice for Cheney’s folly, then, Mr. and Mrs. Middle class American.

Have a nice day.

So Much for States Rights
One of the basic philosophies of the “Reagan Revolution(tm)” was to put more power back into the hands of state and local governments.
That never happened of course, and subsequently each Republican administration has actually tried to outdo the other’s big government aspirations- even that of the so-called big government Democratic administration.

Go figure.

Now we have the potential coup de grace that will allow this administration (and subsequent Republican administrations- you know they have the elections sewn up in a bag somewhere) impose martial law on US.

If they can keep us in a perpetual state of war, the gold standard for government control, then almost any breach puts US in a state not unlike the Soviet Union.


You ain’t seen nothing yet.

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Classless by Nature

May 25, 2007

The US used to be a nation that prided itself on its classless nature.

Sure, historically there have certainly always been economic, educational, and racial disparities- people of every nation suffered those.

But we were made to be different.

We allowed people the opportunity to rise above their humble origins, and succeed, evolve, through their own effort. Recognizing just how much difficulty there was in “breaking the mold,” we also cared enough to establish programs to assist those among us who were caught in the endless cycle of poverty and despair, and a few broke through.

Sure, there hasn’t ever been a perfect system, but ours worked and it was Good Thing to Do. And we did a lot of good. And, we felt good about it.

The measure of “class” can be represented as a coefficient. As this article points out, the US at a current rating of 47 is approaching the level-

“prevalent in Latin America, (Argentina 52, Mexico 55, Brazil 60) which has historically exhibited a politics characterized by deep alienation between classes, producing as rulers an unpleasant collection of corrupt oligarchs and irresponsible leftists.”

Is it the end of our classless society? In the long term view, we were only getting started. I feel that a corner has somehow been turned, and people here now no longer care, and want to slam the door shut behind them, and padlock it to boot.

Am I wrong?

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This is May 24, 2007

May 24, 2007

Still lactose intolerant rumble rumble (fäääääährp).

Dr. Housing Bubble features ten (10!) affordable real estate “investments” in So Cal in his regular feature Real Homes of Genius(tm). Wicked.

Chas. Hugh Smith‘s post today (see the May 24 entry “Health, Healthcare and Bankruptcy“) concerns the poor state of healthcare in this nation. Being faithful to this weeks theme ‘Why the Truth Can’t be Told,” he asserts (rightly, methinks) the reason it will never be addressed. Hint: nothing to do with do-nothings, know-nothings, unfeasibility, vested interests, conflicts of interest, etc.

Computers and media: short of locating everything in the same room, it’s been a real pain to integrate these two- to date- paradoxical systems.

& If you are like me, you do not want to “invest” in some expensive hardware that’ll be obsolete after your next haircut.

What we have been needing is a “missing link.” Some device (software alone won’t be a solution) that will retrieve the “data” (.avi, .mp4, .mp3, divx, .vob) from your computer upstairs to your media room downstairs.

By George I think they have the thang right here- the Mivx HD player.

A little “lite” reading and it shows great promise.

It can carry a HDD on board with your media loaded, or you can use it’s wireless capability to network to your PC upstairs. Or do both.

This means of course the remote should function just as if it were controlling the DVD player, and I can watch the stuff on my computer, off the Mvix player itself.

Except I don’t do HD… yet. One question: will it function the same for SD?

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Today’s Agenda

May 23, 2007

After (nearly) 50 years, I’ve suddenly become lactose intolerant. WTF?

At one of the blogs I regularly read is a well delineated view of how greed has affected- or should I say infected- US, comparing symbolism from the Japanese movie Ugetsu. Tis the entry dated May23.

I have generally found I like what Mr. Smith has to say. I recognize his world view as not too far removed from my own- although he is far more edumacated, eloquent and intelligent than I. He has a Blogger version too, if you prefer.

I just started the book “Reminiscences of a Stock Operator” upon his recommendation. For something written in the early part of the last century, the similarity of markets and crowd psychology (a.k.a. herd mentality) way back then to today’s environment make it timeless.

So little has changed, and this book has really opened my eye to things which I’ll assume market traders already knew (if they do not, I suppose it is at their peril) (like I give a damn), but I surely did not.

It’s like finding the Rosetta Stone for understanding the Market.

This new Monicagate(tm) with that religious freak Goodling (she of the high falutin’ qualifications that helped determined legal ramifications that affects each and every one of us) started today and all I will say right now is burn her! burn her! witch! burn her!

I read somewhere that the famous “boob draping” of the statues behind where former AG Ashcroft addressed the country, had a lot to do with her “influence.” Allegedly.

Ooh La La

May 23, 2007

An appreciation of one of the cars from a company I have longed admired. It’s strange, but this eccentric, and ingenious auto manufacturer produced some beautiful machines, and yet one hasn’t been able to purchase a new one in this country since the 1970’s.

Too bad, because along with the DS (I had a ’67), the 2CV, and the Traction Avant, this comany has always proven throughout its long history to be on the leading edge of intelligent design and engineering.

And now for your automotive viewing enjoyment, we present the for you the wonderous SM-

BTW, if you ask me (go ahead), “Paco, what is the solution to the oil shortage, our economic dependence on oil, and how can we free ourselves from enriching a nation of facists that would like to see us on our knees (and beheaded)?”

Why, we should all be driving scooters or motorcycles or small, light cars like the 2CV. Comfy, lively, nearly 50mpg (it’ll best that energy hog of a Prius), so what if it can’t get over 60. You in a hurry?

A Fair(y) Use Tale

May 20, 2007

A Stanford student, has made a clever little 10 minute video championing fair use. Be sure and read the FBI warning at the beginning- I know you are used to ignoring it.

BTW, No animated figures were harmed in the making of this video.