3/19/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

Much of the Lakes Region of New Hampshire is still recovering from last Tuesday's Nor'easter, with some folks not having seen their power restored until today.

At least the roads are all free and clear of any residual ice and snow. Even the very steep driveway here at The Manse was passable the day after the storm passed, though it took a bit of effort on my part to make sure that was so. Moving 19+ inches of snow with a balky snowblower was an adventure in and of itself. Without the help of my neighbor, Oracle Al, it would have been much more difficult. (I refer to him as Oracle Al because he works for Oracle. 'Al' is not his real name, but I had to call him something!)

Warm spring-like weather will be here for Monday and Tuesday, helping even more of the snow to melt away. It is appropriate as the first day of spring is Monday!

*****************


I'm not sure I like this modern version of the Good Samaritan. It's nothing more than yet another version of virtue signaling, something that does no one any good.

*****************


The News Junkie asks “Why does climate alarmism look like a scam?”

Because it is!

It's a multi-billion dollar scam being perpetrated by people who really don't give a s**t about the climate or the people they're scamming. They just want the money.

If they say it isn't about the money, it's about the money.

*****************


Who says there's no such thing as karma?

Rachel Maddow thought she had the dirt on President Trump when she got a copy of his 1995 tax returns. She played it up on MSLSD as if she would be revealing some dirty laundry and have the President by the short and curlies.

It turns out there was no 'there' there. His return was pretty straightforward and plain vanilla.

After this fiasco, Maddow's ratings have plummeted. (Not that they were all that good to begin with. Now they're even worse.) She's also a laughing stock.

It couldn't happen to a 'nicer' Progressive apologist/propagandist.

*****************


When virtue signaling turns to rape.

I'm sure some of those same folks will be trying to explain to the 14-year old victim that she shouldn't be upset by being raped by two illegal immigrants in her school.

These 'More Virtuous Than Thou' assholes need to get a clue, but I'm not holding my breath that will.

*****************


And anti-capitalist leader demands “unapologetically” that white men and women pay her “because they consume intellectual, emotional & creative labor 24/7 w/o my consent.”

If she wants me to pay her, particularly for things that I have created. I have one question for her - “Do you want that payment to be in .308 or .40 caliber?”

This deluded soul needs some mental help. I suggest involuntary commitment until she's rational again.

*****************


Joel Kotkin has the right of it as Hollywood becomes less important and less influential due to it's self-inflicted wounds.

No industry is more identified with Southern California than entertainment. Yet, in the past, the industry’s appeal has lain in identifying with the always-changing values and mythos of American society. But, today, that connection is being undermined, not just by technology, but also by a seemingly self-conscious decision to sever the industry’s links with roughly half of the population.

As Glenn Reynolds comments, “Also, their movies mostly stink.”

Yes. Yes they do. It's one reason I have only been to a movie theater once in the past two years.

*****************


David Starr tears into Obama's 54.5 MPG mandate, telling us we really wouldn't want to drive a car that gets that kind of fuel economy,particularly if it can't carry the spouse, kids, and all the luggage on a road trip. As he writes, “Heck you cannot get 54.5 MPG out of motorcycle, let alone any sort of decent car.”

Indeed.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the local ski resorts and snowmobile trails have received a boon from Mother Nature, preparations for boating season have ceased (for now), and where the woodpile is shrinking a somewhat slower pace.

3/18/2017

Venezuela Closer To The Brink

It is fascinating watching as Venezuela collapses, seeing it as yet another real life example of what Ayn Rand warned us about 60 years ago. It went from being one of the wealthiest nations in South America to the poorest. It wasn't happenstance or natural disaster which brought about this transformation from wealth to poverty. It was caused by deliberate actions taken by Venezuela's socialist government.

Anyone even slightly cognizant of Socialism's major fault, that being that eventually the run out of other people's money and everything then falls apart, could see that Hugo Chavez and his minions chose to ignore the lessons history has taught about that gawd-awful ideology. It's like Chavez, Maduro, and the other Chavistas used Atlas Shrugged as a how-to manual and not a warning.

Their latest dive into Ayn Rand's dystopian tome: Arresting bakers because they can't make enough bread.

Facing a bread shortage that is spawning massive lines and souring the national mood, the Venezuelan government is responding this week by detaining bakers and seizing establishments.

In a press release, the National Superintendent for the Defense of Socioeconomic Rights said it had charged four people and temporarily seized two bakeries as the socialist administration accused bakers of being part of a broad “economic war” aimed at destabilizing the country.

Juan Crespo, the president of the Industrial Flour Union called Sintra-Harina, which represents 9,000 bakeries nationwide, said the government’s heavy hand isn’t going to solve the problem.

“The government isn’t importing enough wheat,” he said. “If you don’t have wheat, you don’t have flour, and if you don’t have flour, you don’t have bread.”

He said the country needs four, 30-ton boats of wheat every month to cover basic demand.

So it isn't that there isn't enough wheat, and hence flour to bake bread. It's that the greedy bakers are 'destabilizing the country'. To me it appears the Venezuelan government has no understanding of cause and effect, meaning that they either don't know or don't care that no amount of coercion can force bakers to make enough bread if there are no ingredients available.

We've seen that before when the Venezuelan government chastised, and in some cases, arrested factory owners and managers because their factories weren't producing any goods. That there were no raw materials available and/or the electrical supply was spotty or non-existent didn't make any difference. It was the fault of the 'greedy factory owners destabilizing the country' that was causing the problem. Funny that the arrests did not motivate other factory owners to get their factories operating again seeing that they were in exactly the same situation as those who were detained – no materials and no power.

That the Chavistas were the ones who created this crisis to begin with is something they can never admit. It has to be the fault of someone else. Therefore there will be no changes until a revolution takes place that removes the Chavistas from power.

3/14/2017

Yet Another Storm O' Doom

The snow started falling right around 7 this morning just as the WP Mom and I were making our way to our local polling place to participate in our town elections and town/school warrant articles voting. In an amazingly short period of time the road conditions deteriorated.

Less than a mile from The Manse we came across a bad accident, one that turned out to be fatal. That was after all of 15 minutes of snowfall.

Now one might ask why we were braving the increasingly bad conditions on such a day. As I mentioned above, it was our Town Meeting day which included electing town and school officials as well as voting on various warrant articles that covered the gamut of town/school spending, changes to zoning ordinances how certain default budgets would be prepared. While Town Meeting has no implications at state or federal level, meaning a delay in holding the meeting would have no impact at the state or federal level, New Hampshire state law doesn't allow 'snow day' adjustments during elections. But a contradictory state law gives the town/school moderator the power to reschedule town/school meetings. Which one holds sway?

Of course the governor and the Secretary of State say the first has precedence. But a number of towns around the state ignored that 'advice' and rescheduled their town meetings/elections until Thursday.

You might ask why we here in the Granite State aren't prepared for snow storms like the one we are experiencing at the moment? We are. But with the rapid snowfall rate and even more rapidly deteriorating road conditions one should ask why we would put our fellow townsfolk at such a risk for something that could be postponed for a day or two. When the snowfall rates are high enough the plow crews can't keep up and the road become slick, and in some cases, dangerous to travel. Considering the Weather GuysTM have forecast up to 2 feet of snow in our area with high winds (up to 50MPH gusts) to start a little later in the day, traveling will become even more dangerous than it has already been. This morning's traffic fatality and other accidents is proof of that.

As an aside, the local TV news operations haven't been going over the top with their all too common “Storm O' Doom” coverage. In fact, most have been rather low key. So far I haven't seen a single on-the-scene reporter reach down to pick up a handful of snow to show that it is indeed snowing and accumulating. They and the talking heads at the studio have merely reminded folks to stay off the roads if they don't need to be out, and if they do, to exercise caution and common sense, and to take their time getting to their destination.

Frankly, that's quite refreshing.

3/12/2017

Thoughts on A Sunday

It's been a cold and windy weekend here in central New Hampshire, with winter letting us know it isn't done with us yet. Large snowstorm is headed our way and is supposed to drop between 12 and 18 of snow starting some time Tuesday morning.

One of the issues with the high winds has been downed tree limbs and power outages. Power was out here at The Manse this past Thursday for a couple of hours, caused by the winds dropping one of those aforementioned tree limbs onto power lines nearby.

Another issue has been spotty Internet access. It started a few weeks ago and it wasn't until recently I was able to figure out that we kept losing connection to the 'Net every time it was windy out. That tells me there's some kind of problem outside The Manse, likely a loose or bad connector either on the side of The Manse our out at the pole.

I have had this problem once before when I resided at the Official Weekend Pundit Lakeside Manse some years ago. It took a while for the local cable company to figure out it was a bad connector on a splitter box out on the street. The cable guy is supposed to be here first thing Tuesday morning (just ahead of the storm) to fix the problem...I hope. Until then posting will be problematic. (I couldn't post anything last night because I had little or no connectivity most of the day.)

*****************


I found it interesting that The New Republic has propose a so-called Bluexit to separate the Blue States from the Red States. It reads a little tongue-in-cheek, but I do have one complaint about the premise, that being that they included New Hampshire as a Blue State. We are not.

While our congressional delegation is all Democrat, something that happens now and then in our contrarian state, our state legislature, executive counsel, and governor are Republican. Our legislature recently passed Constitutional Carry and our governor happily signed it. The governor is working hard to trim back if not eliminate some of our corporate taxes as well as do away with our Interest and Dividend taxes. (New Hampshire has no income tax on wages but it does tax the interest and dividends paid out to residents. If it goes away then no income by an individual would taxed by the state. So far there's heavy support for the measure.)

While our previous governor, Maggie Hassan - now one of our two US senators - tried hard to make New Hampshire a carbon copy of the People's Republic of Massachusetts, the legislature dismantled many of her proposals and they never saw the light of day. She did manage, however, to create a huge budget deficit at one point, cooking the numbers on projected revenues including some from casino licensing. One problem – casino gambling is not legal in New Hampshire and I hope it never will be.

How does any of that make New Hampshire a Blue State? It must be wishful thinking on the part of The New Republic.

*****************


Frankly, I'm expecting a civil war in California.

How could it not happen when California's Democrats in the Golden State have been waging war on the poor and middle class for years?

California Democrats frequently bloviate about helping the poor and downtrodden, yet two recent examples — a campaign by the nation’s second-largest public-school district to crush charter alternatives and new state legislation that will boost the cost of housing development — demonstrate how liberal policies can be a direct assault on the financial prospects of the state’s lowest-income residents.

Some of the sore losers on the Left Coast talk about #Calexit, but I think they'll find that most of the counties and communities away from the coast will fight that tooth and nail, knowing that if #Calexit became a reality most of them would be relegated to the status of serfs (as if they aren't already). It would be The Hunger Games brought to reality.

*****************


So it's come to this.

The USDA threatens to shut down a farm for opposing gay marriage.

How is it the USDA has any say in the matter? How is it it can violate the First Amendment rights of the farm owner with impunity?

Oh, that's right. I forgot. The USDA isn't bound by the law because it believes in administrative law rather than constitutional law. It makes up its own rules and laws as it sees fit.

I see a class action suit in the future. Or may President Trump can issue an Executive Order overturning the USDA's stand and fire the bureaucrats behind this debacle.

*****************


Talk about irony!

Now that the shoe is on the other foot, Nancy Pelosi wants to know what's in a bill before it's passed.

Where was that concern when she was Speaker of the House and pushed that gawdawful ObamaCare bill? As we know, it was nowhere.

*****************


I covered the subject of China'[s so-called 'Ghost Cities' in the past. One would think that by know there would be hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people now living in them, but you'd be wrong.

When I covered this issue, there were maybe a dozen such ghost cities. Now there are at least 50.

It looks like the trend is accelerating with even more cities planned to be built.

*****************


Want to see the negative effects of gender feminism? Then just look here at the Before and After photos of these poor women who don't realize they've been lied to.

While some out there may say am merely projecting my patriarchal definition of beauty on these womyn, I can say that I am not. I just don't like seeing people purposely mutilating themselves in order to meet someone else's definition of what's acceptable. (See, it works both ways. My definition of what is acceptable versus someone else's definition. Which one is right? I don't really care, but at least I don't expect women to mutilate themselves in order to 'fit it' unlike those who want women to meet the gender feminist ideal.)

*****************


Listening to the bleating from the LSM-DNC, one would think that a new president has never fired US Attorneys appointed by their predecessor.

Bill Clinton fired every sitting US Attorney, some 90+ of them, after he took office and there wasn't a peep out of the media other than reporting that it took place. But Trump asks for the resignation of 46 of them and it's 'unprecedented' or 'purely political' or 'illegal', particularly after one of them balks and Trump fires him.

The LSM ignores the fact that they serve at the pleasure of the President, period. Appointments to these positions are political and always have been. But the fact that a bunch of very liberal US Attorneys have been told their services are no longer required is now seen as wrong. To quote The Won, “Elections have consequences.”

Indeed they do.

*****************


I liked the title of this op-ed piece in the NYT Sunday magazine: The Dangerous Safety of College Campuses.

The moral of the recent melee at Middlebury College, where students shouted down and chased away a controversial social scientist, isn’t just about free speech, though that’s the rubric under which the ugly incident has been tucked. It’s about emotional coddling. It’s about intellectual impoverishment.

Somewhere along the way, those young men and women — our future leaders, perhaps — got the idea that they should be able to purge their world of perspectives offensive to them. They came to believe that it’s morally dignified and politically constructive to scream rather than to reason, to hurl slurs in place of arguments.

They have been done a terrible disservice. All of us have, and we need to reacquaint ourselves with what education really means and what colleges do and don’t owe their charges.

Physical safety? Absolutely. A smooth, validating passage across the ocean of ideas? No. If anything, colleges owe students turbulence, because it’s from a contest of perspectives and an assault on presumptions that truth emerges — and, with it, true confidence.
Indeed. Coddling these fragile snowflakes helps no one, leaves them crippled and unable to deal with real life, and pushes them down a destructive path that will lead to something far worse than what they've been 'protesting' against.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where winter weather is returning with a vengeance, dreams of spring have retreated, and where we're keeping the woodstove well stoked.

3/05/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

We've dived back into winter temperatures with a 60ºF change in temperatures between Thursday and yesterday. We went from 64ºF to 4ºF along with plenty of high wind to make the wind chill somewhere around -20ºF.

I don't mind the cold all that much, but this swing from cold to warm to cold and back again is getting pretty old.

*****************


This follows some of what I posted yesterday about too many people not knowing how stuff works.

In this case it appears there are people who actually take pride in not knowing how to do things those of us of the older generations can do without even thinking. Being intentionally ignorant about such things merely tells us you're too frickin' immature and are incapable of dealing with life as it is.

It's time to grow up, snowflakes!

*****************


You know the oh-so-tolerant campus Progressives are showing their true colors – pure fascism – when they become violent and start sending non-progressive college professors and average American Trump supporters to hospitals after having beaten them all in the name of anti-fascism.

*****************


Are America's self-anointed elite really elite?

No, not by a long shot. They aren't even close. What they are are run-of-the-mill snobs holding a belief that they are somehow better than those outside their circle...or perhaps I should call it what it is, a bubble.

The other question is are they ready for the rude awakening they're about to receive?

Again, the answer is no.

*****************


Here's your Whining Whiner of the Day.

*****************


Talk about the Law of Unintended Consequences coming to bite you in the ass, there's this little tidbit from the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota.

Tribal leaders say a slowing economy and a snowy winter contributed to losses at the Prairie Knights Casino. Also, the closure of the casino’s main access road due to the oil pipeline protest hurt the facility’s bottom line.

“It’s like it’s fallen off a cliff,” said tribal financial officer Jerome Long Bottom. “When the bridge was shut off, the numbers just plummeted.”

Could it be that the protesters who were there to protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline might have had something to do with it. Could all of the trash, garbage, and human waste they left behind for someone else to clean up have caused the access road to the casino to be closed?

I am sure the Standing Rock Sioux are just overjoyed at the $6 million loss in revenue for their tribe caused by the oh-so-concerned guilty white liberals.

*****************


Due to some continuing connectivity issues I have cut this week's edition of TOAS short. It seems that any time the wind blows I lose my connection to the net. I have already contacted my provider, one of the local cable MSOs, and they have confirmed there is indeed a problem as they could not maintain contact with my cable modem. So with that, that is the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather has fled...until Wednesday, the local townsfolk are looking close at the town warrants, and where my woodpile has resumed shrinking.

3/04/2017

Does The Fact That Clarke's Law Is Becoming A Reality Signal The Downfall Of Civilization?

A long time ago, science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke posited that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” As Richard Fernandez has posted, we are seeing the return of magic, and it's not good.

The 21st century is turning out to be mix of incompetence and brilliance, high technology and primitivism, fastidiousness and brutality all coexisting side by side.

--snip--

Too many everyday things are already indistinguishable from magic to the average man.  Four centuries ago everyone knew how everything in their village worked.  Even a hundred years ago an intelligent person could figure out how anything he would likely encounter, even the steam locomotive.  But today people are surrounded by things about whose workings they haven't a clue.  Medical devices, synthetic pharmaceuticals, designer pathogens.  The proportion of those who can explain the world is gradually shrinking.

This is something I have noticed over the years.

Just within my lifetime I have seen the increase in the level of ignorance about how things work. I'm not talking about just the high tech gizmos that have become ubiquitous, but items and technologies that have been around for generations. I'm talking about things like internal combustion engines, power generation (and the distribution grids that go with it), aircraft, radio and TV, telephones (the plain old telephone systems that require wires), telegraphs, film cameras, light bulbs, steam engines, looms, and a whole host of other tech that has been around for a century or more and are still in use today. When we get into the 21st century tech that we use every day the level of ignorance about how it all works is staggering and getting worse. As I have heard more than one colleague opine over the years, “People think all of this neat wiz bang stuff works by FM – F***kin' Magic.” It never ceases to surprise me how many people I know outside of the geek network haven't a clue how things work. They just know that it does neat stuff.

Many of these folks think that electricity comes from a wall outlet, food comes from a supermarket, gasoline comes from a gas station, and the Internet comes from thin air. They haven't a clue about all of the 'hidden' things that make all of those things possible or how any of it works.

As Richard has written, the number of people who understand it all and can explain it is shrinking. At some point those of us who do understand it, know how it works, know how to fix it, and know how to make new things will be looked upon with awe, and most probably, fear. We will have become the new wizards, or better yet, Techno-Mages, to borrow a term from one of my favorite sci-fi TV series, Babylon 5.

As I mentioned before, this is not a good thing. On the other hand, this could lead to something created from the mind of Ayn Rand – Galt's Gulch. Those of us who understand science and technology, who can actually create things never seen before and extend mankind's knowledge, will sequester themselves away from the growing ignorance and barbarity and wait for everything to fall apart. Or better yet, get ourselves off of this world and expand out into the rest of the solar system and beyond. But I digress.

Such a division is not a good thing as it can lead to unintended consequences. As Robert Heinlein noted:

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”

If you look at the above quote and then at Atlas Shrugged you'll see he is describing exactly what happened in Rand's dystopian tome.

Think it can't happen? You'd be wrong. We're already seeing the effect today as the willful ignorance typified by reliance on pseudo-science and so-called 'spiritual' beliefs supplant the knowledge of technology and science. The time will come when they denigrate those who are the keepers of all of that hard won knowledge, assuming it hasn't already reached that point.

Am I painting a dark picture of what ignorance about how things work might bring about? Yup, absolutely. Am I off the mark about a likely outcome if this ignorance continues unabated? No way in hell. If anything I'm probably understating the effects of the problem.

2/26/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

This weekend was a half-and-half weekend, with temperatures in the 60's yesterday and in the 30's today. Yesterday I opened the windows in The Manse to air it out, purging the rather stale air. This morning I had to fire up the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove to keep the chill from invading. (I prefer to use the stove rather than the propane-fired furnace as cord wood is cheap and propane is not.)

Much of the snow around The Manse has melted away, including some of the snow banks left behind when BeezleBub plowed out the driveway.

We'll be back into warmer temperatures tomorrow, maybe into the 50's, but it's going to be very breezy.

*****************


I, for one, will not be watching the Academy Awards tonight. If I want to hear ignorant political rhetoric I'll go watch a political rally.

Why these celebrities think that their political viewpoints mean anything to anyone outside of Hollywood baffles me. Do they think their words carry more weight than anyone else's? Obviously they do. Too bad they live in a bubble, hearing nothing but voices that agree with them, those voices being no more in touch with the real world than the celebrities themselves.

Frankly, I'll find more entertainment and enlightenment watching the Daytona 500 later today.

*****************


The Barrister laments the decay of his beloved Connecticut, seeing it turn from a frugal and wealthy state – it used to have the highest per capita income in the US – into a Blue State with high taxes, debt in the billions, cities that are now hellholes, and businesses and wealthy residents fleeing for greener pastures.

For a century, this conservative Protestant state, the "Land of Steady Habits," was a state of tough Yankee self-reliance and no faith in or expectations from government of any sort. It had no income tax until recent years (damn that Republican jerk Gov. Lowell Weicker who put in the tax and fled the state to avoid his taxes as soon as he was out of office).

Weicker swore that the state income tax would solve all the problems. It was the opposite, with deeper and deeper debt and higher and higher taxes ever since. Did I mention that, since Weicker, the state has been basically bankrupt?

Under the Blue Model, jobs have fled, manufacturing has fled, the cities are in the ICU and run by various union, ethnic, or other mobsters and predators, and the government unions control the levers of government. Catastrophe. Few remember that in the 1960s Hartford was the most desirable small city in America according to Time magazine. Now it is a dangerous (at night) shithole of degeneracy, dependency, and hugely-expensive and failing government schools.

I remember Connecticut fondly.

I grew up summers there, spending every summer in the coastal town of Madison. When the WP Parents retired, they moved to our family's beach house, expecting to spend the rest of their lives there. But 13 years ago they had to leave a town and a home they loved because they had been taxed so heavily it was rapidly draining their retirement funds.

That beach house had been in our family for almost 60 years. It had been built by my maternal grandfather, a machinist. They were forced to sell it and move away because the Blue State that is Connecticut decided they they could use my parents' retirement funds better than they could. (It didn't help that a lot of Pretentious Yuppie Scumbags from New York moved into town and drove a town spending spree that had property taxes doubling in short order. A lot of families that had lived in Madison for generations were driven out.)

*****************


Speaking of Connecticut's downfall, there is something called the Connecticut Exodus driven by high taxes, rapidly rising crime rates, and a collapsing economy. People and businesses are leaving in large numbers. More would leave, but they can't sell their homes. Those that can leave cite the lack of jobs, overbearing business regulations, and confiscatory taxes as just some of the reasons for fleeing. What makes it even worse is that Governor Malloy keeps doubling down on stupid, squeezing businesses and residents for more tax money. It's gotten so bad that even corporate giants like General Electric have pulled up stakes.

Will the last Progressive leaving Connecticut please turn off the lights?

*****************


Looking a little farther south, in this case Philadelphia, we're seeing yet another example of Democrat ignorance about economics playing out in real life.

In this case, the soda tax imposed by the city is having major unintended consequences, the primary one being the expected revenues from the tax have fallen far short of projections. That the city planned on using those revenues to help support the city's schools has left a hole in their budget.

Another unintended consequence has been the loss of jobs as both distributors and stores start laying off employees who are no longer needed because of the fall off of sales, which has been estimated to be between 30 and 50 percent.

I expect that any day now some representative of the City of Philadelphia will claim the layoffs will in some way be a positive thing. Tell that to the people who no longer have jobs.

*****************


I'm starting to sound like a broken record, but this bears repeating.

Just when I thought they couldn't get any stupider....

Nothing that goes on in California surprises me any more.

*****************


This is how you respond to SJWs, particularly the more ignorant than usual ones.

Hmm. Maybe I'm being too generous. I've found that every SJW I've encountered so far is egregiously ignorant, and proud of it.

*****************


Cap'n Teach shows us yet another lesson in economics, in this case when a company like Starbucks goes SJW and announces it will hire 10,000 refugees over the next 5 years.

You can't tell me that won't negatively affect their bottom line.

*****************


It should be no surprise to anyone paying attention to CPAC 2017 that there's a move afoot to draft Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke to run for the US Senate in 2018.

Clarke is an outspoken critic of feelgood policing, welfare, and government policies put forth by the state of Wisconsin as well as the federal government. He sees first hand the destructive effects of such policies and knows what works and what doesn't.

He'd be running against incumbent US Senator Tammy Baldwin, a not very popular Democrat who barely squeaked by during her last election. That the tide has turned against many of the out-of-touch Progressive Democrats is another factor that should hopefully prompt Clarke to run against her next year.

*****************


Some retailers are learning the hard way that there's a price to pay for going political when it comes to which goods they will or will not sell. It is particularly true when the SJWs threaten boycotts and the retailers cave. Or worse, when they use in-your-face displays that offend the very people they depend upon to stay in business.

On the other hand many of the rest of us sane folks turn calls for boycotts from the SJWs into 'buycotts', taking our business to the very people being boycotted by the fragile SJW snowflakes as a not so subtle “Up Yours!”

*****************


It is time for the police to get back to policing, particularly when it comes to quelling violent protests and riots. If they do not, the protests/riots will become all to common because the so-called protesters will know there will be little or no repercussions from their actions and people will die.

At the Berkeley protest/riot against Milo Yiannapoulos, the campus and city police did nothing to quell the violence and looting. The police have sent the message that rioting is perfectly acceptable as a means of silencing someone the 'protesters' don't like. (Of course I also know that quite a few of those rioters didn't care one way or the other about Milo. They just wanted to break up and burn stuff that belonged to other people.)

If the police had broken it up as they were duty bound to do, the chances of follow on 'protests' would diminish.

The BLM bulls**t has got to stop. BLM doesn't give a rat's ass about black lives. If they did they would be working hard to stop the black on black murders in their neighborhoods which far outweigh the minuscule numbers of police-on-black killings by orders of magnitude. BLM is an excuse to sanction the killing of cops, rioting, looting, and more block-on-black crimes. It's time for the police to stop being afraid of offending the permanently offended and to do their jobs.

As a side note, one has to wonder just how many of those types of riots would take place in a city where many residents and business owners carry guns? If I had to guess, I'd say none.

*****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather is very up and down temperature-wise, a lot of the snow has disappeared, and where the wood pile is shrinking a lot slower than expected.

2/25/2017

Trump Declines Dinner With Hostile Press Corps

It is telling that Donald Trump has decided to forego attending the White House Correspondents Association annual dinner. Anyone paying attention knows that he has little use or respect for the ‘usual suspects’, meaning the more rabid and biased White House Press Corps. So why would he attend a gala that will be filled with people that have but one mission in life, that being to destroy him by any means necessary?

They have made their disdain and, dare I say, outright hatred of the President well known. They are angry with him because he refuses to acknowledge that they are the self-appointed gatekeepers of news and information from and about the White House and President. That he refuses to call on them during press conferences, preferring to call on reporters from smaller media outlets rather than the purveyors of fake news (like CNN) has pissed them off to no end.

It appears to me that they haven’t realized that their days of being the voice for the people is fading away, something that has been happening for some time and has accelerated since the advent of the Internet. They do not fulfill the position they once did and they are becoming increasingly superfluous, particularly as new media outlets are being used by the President and the White House that bypasses the once-important gatekeepers.

One other thing that has escaped the notice of press corps – Donald Trump is a master when it comes to controlling the message and getting that message out despite a hostile media. He cut his teeth on media manipulation and getting his message out as it was part and parcel of his business success. That he’s turned that acumen into a bludgeon to use against the overtly hostile press shouldn’t surprise anyone…but it has, much to the detriment of that very same hostile press corps.

So it should not be a surprise to anyone that Trump has decided not to attend a dinner held by people who have no love for him. Why waste the time better used for other things?

2/19/2017

Thoughts On A Sunday

This weekend has been the mirror image of last weekend, with very warm temps (51ºF yesterday and 49ºF today). The warm temps and bright sunlight has certainly helped melt away the snow and ice covering The Manse's driveway, making it possible for the missus to make it up and down the driveway in her FWD Honda. (I think her next vehicle will be either 4WD or AWD which will solve part of the problem.)

****************


Mike Hendrix looks at something most of the MSM-DNC and the Ninth Circuit Court overlooked, Or chose to overlook), that being Trump's executive order to halt immigrants, visitors, and refugees from the seven Muslim countries was perfectly legal and constitutional. How can that be?

Under Title VIII, Chapter 12, Sub-Chapter II, Part II, § 1182 of the U.S. Code, “Inadmissible Aliens”, if the President of the United States “finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.”

It was passed by Congress and signed by the President back in the 1950's. It has been used by a number of presidents since then, including President Obama. But now , all of a sudden, it is illegal for the President to issue such orders? Under which part of the US Constitution?

****************


It's bad enough radical feminism has managed to make just about any kind of sexual contact between men and women on college campuses the equivalent of rape (but lesbian sex is perfectly OK), they now want to extend that same silliness to high schools in Maryland.

I dare say they'll also push to make that true throughout society in general.

They have pushed the false “Rape crisis on campus” narrative every single day. They haven't been able to prove their claims except by misquoting a non-scientific survey that even the researchers have strongly stated should not be used as it was highly subjective and misleading for the purposes the gender feminists have been using it.

I have a feeling this is going to backfire on them and destroy what little credibility they have (if they ever had any). It's just another witch hunt, no different from the day care child molestation frenzy that swept through the nation a couple of decades ago. It destroyed countless lives and sent innocent people to prison for crimes they did not commit. The only difference with the present day witch hunt is that it is politically motivated and that makes it suspect right from the beginning.

****************


Oh Noes!

The GOP wants NASA to focus more on space rather than climate science...or Muslim outreach.

That seems like a good idea considering NASA's charter is to expand mankind's understanding of space and to “boldly go where no man has gone before”. That's what NASA used to do. Then they got caught up ina lot of the political and ideological BS that infected so many other parts of government and they forgot that space is what they were supposed to be doing.

It's about time someone reminded them of that.

****************


I found it refreshing that Trump's rally in Florida began with First Lady Melania Trump reciting the Lord's Prayer.

Of course the usual suspects have been hammering her and the President for doing so.

Too bad.

****************


This is a somewhat abbreviated TOAS as we had company for most of the day – a good friend I hadn't seen in some time came up from the flatlands and we caught up on a number of things. It's always good to see old and dear friends, so I am not going to apologize for a foreshortened post today.

****************


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the warm weather will be leaving for a couple pf days but returning by Wednesday, where the February Vacation skiers have been crowding the ski slopes, and where once again Monday has returned all to quickly.

2/16/2017

The Oroville Dam Debacle - A Big Question

Watching the continuing drama at the Oroville Dam in California has been showing all of us one big example of hubris. Between the lack of much needed maintenance (“We're in drought that will never end. Why do we need to fix something that's never going to be used again?”), ignored warnings, the focus of much needed funds towards pipe-dreams, I'd say the state of California is finally receiving the bill for their hubris.

Looking at the original problem, the collapsing main spillway, I have one simple question that no one has answered, to the best of my knowledge, that being “Where the hell is the rebar?”

Watching the videos and numerous pictures that have been appearing on the news and the 'Net, the one think that I have noticed is the total lack of reinforcing bars in any of the failed concrete. If that was part of the original design I have to say that's one heck of a design flaw. If it was part of the original designs, then who remove it, or worse, decided to 'save' some money by eliminating it and compromising the integrity of the spillway?

In either case, a properly designed spillway should not have collapsed like that. In fact, it should have been stronger than the surrounding soil and withstood any undermining. Instead, there is a gaping chasm where there should be a spillway and the structural integrity of the entire dam has been compromised.