Thoughts On A Sunday

Due to the outright business of the weekend, this will be a somewhat abbreviated post.

(Hey, sometimes things other than post take priority!)


BeezleBub finished off the retail season at the farm yesterday, closing out the season with an evening working at the corn maze. He won't be working again until after Thanksgiving when he'll be back to work cutting, splitting, and stacking firewood for next year and the year after. (Some firewood takes a year to dry, other wood – oak and maple, to name two – take two years to dry properly.

I know the next month is going to be torture for him, but at least he knows he'll be back at the farm in December.


The mid-term campaigns are coming to an end and I think we can expect a major push in campaign ads, telephone polls, and last minute campaign stops. It's going to be totally chaotic.

I can't wait for the quiet to return the day after the elections.


The siding work at the Bogie Estates is finished and the house looks pretty spiffy if I do say so myself.


If we need an example of why socialism should be considered a disease no different than alcoholism, then this one should do.

Some folks still haven't been able to figure out that socialism has to be paid for by someone and that once that 'someone's' money is gone, so is socialism.

Then again no one's ever said socialists are capable of the long view. History has certainly proven that one more than one occasion.


One of the other reasons I'm not putting together my usual lengthy Sunday posts is, quite frankly, a problem with the cooling fan on the video card in my computer. You see, it doesn't work anymore. That means the GPU on the card will overheat after a while and cause the video card to fail forcing a reset on my machine. It's quite annoying and at the moment I can't justify buying a new card, particularly since I have the means of fixing the cooling problem. It's just a matter of actually getting to it...maybe Monday...or Tuesday...or some other day.


Kathleen McKinley links to a letter by a life-long Democrat horrified by what Obama has done to the Democrat Party.

This reminds me of Ronald Reagan's explanation about why he became a Republican: “I didn't leave the Democrat Party. It left me.”


And that's the (greatly abbreviated) news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the leaves are still on the trees, the woodstove has been running around the clock, and where there are still boats out on the lake!


Dispelling The Myths About The Tea Party - Part V

Bill Whittle continues with his series about what it is we believe and why in his efforts to dispel the myths about the Tea party and its supporters.

I particularly agree with his point about the economy, specifically that the recession was “created by bad law.”


Give Us A (Commercial) Break...Some More!

Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, they prove me wrong.

As I wrote here, the ratio of negative to positive campaign ads is seriously skewed to the negative, with less than 4% of the ads I saw on TV being positive (or at least not negative).

Now that the campaign season is down to its last few days before the elections, the level of rhetoric and the demonizing of the opposition has reached deafening levels. Smear campaigns have teetered on the brink of libel and slander. Last ditch efforts to derail opponent's campaigns have also reached a fever pitch.

One of the latest here in New Hampshire has been an effort by the New Hampshire Democrat Party to goad the US Attorney into investigating Republican candidate for New Hampshire's First Congressional District for fiscal improprieties because he amended his financial disclosure form to include a bank account he hadn't disclosed previously. Never mind incumbent Democrat Carol Shea-Porter has had to amend hers over 30 times, 9 times at the insistence of the Federal Election Commission. Isn't that the pot calling the kettle an off-shade of gray?

I would think if there were any issues about the new disclosure that the FEC would have made an issue of it, wouldn't you?

Fact checking some of the various ads on both sides shows the truthfulness quotient has fallen precipitously as we get closer to November 2nd and I have no reason to believe it won't continue its fall into the cellar.

And as bad as it is here in New Hampshire, it's far worse just south of the border in the People's Republic of Taxachusetts, and in California, Illinois, and Colorado. (Some of the 'super-stations' we receive on satellite include KTLA in Los Angeles, WGN in Chicago, and KWGN in Denver.) It's gotten to the point that I can't even watch the news without having to mute the sound every time a political ad airs. We've taken to recording any of the shows we'd normally watch and then zapping through the commercials just so we don't have to watch or listen to the crap pouring out of the TV.

Even listening to music on the radio has become problematic as the ads have intruded there, too, with political hopefuls in four states (Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont) airing an increasing number of ads, most of them negative.

The end can't come too soon.


Rigging The Vote, 21st Century Style

Sometimes they get the dead to vote, in many cases more than once. Sometimes they find full ballot boxes in the trunks of cars or in garages, all of them marked for their favorite Democrat candidate. Sometimes they are able to get homeless people and illegal aliens to the polls. But now they've gone high tech, rigging voting machines in Nevada to set the default vote for US Senator to Harry Reid.

In this case who are 'they'?

Read on:

Since early voting started, there have been credible reports that voting machines in Clark County, Nevada are automatically checking Harry Reid's name on the ballot.


Now there's absolutely no independently verified evidence of chicanery with the voting machines (yet), but it is worth noting that the voting machine technicians in Clark County are members of the Service Employees International Union. The SEIU spent $63 million in elections in 2008 and is planning on spending $44 million more this election cycle -- nearly all of that on Democrats.

Yup, just program the machines to pick the candidate of your choice and watch the votes tally up! And we thought the Chicago Way was corrupt.


Every So Often They Get It Right

It seems we always hear about how poorly government does just about everything. For the most part, that's true. But every so often they get things right.

In this case, it looks like government has managed to get at least 12 things right. What am I talking about?

Government websites.

The twelve sites honored in the linked article cover both federal and state sites, showing how good they can be.

Unfortunately government can also have some pretty bad websites, too.


Thoughts On A Sunday

The chilly fall weather we've been experiencing over the past week will be replaced by warm temps, with daytime highs in the 70's and nighttime lows in the 50's, giving us a brief respite before the cooler weather returns.

That means we won't need to use the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove for most of the week.

That's just fine by me.


By way of GraniteGrok comes this excellent way to start your morning: Five minutes of Lieutenant Colonel Allan West.


Apparently there are a number of Dems who really don't like Lieutenant Colonel Allan West and are working hard to paint him as the anti-woman Congressional candidate.

The question is, is going after Allen West a smart strategy or a sign of Democrat desperation?


Bogie keeps us up to date on the renovations taking place at the Bogie Estates. This week: new siding and new windows.


This doesn't fill me with confidence in the federal government.

It appears our benevolent and ever expanding government didn't have any idea how many data centers it really has, underestimating the total by over a thousand.

If a thousand were ten percent of the total, that's one thing. But in this case their estimate was off by almost 50 percent (47.7%), with a July 2010 count revealing there are actually 2094 federal data centers.

This doesn't bode well for anyone claiming the government is capable or competent to handle anything, including running our lives.


I have to agree with fellow New Hampshire resident P.J. O'Rourke on this one:

They hate our guts. And they're drunk on power.

They don’t just hate our Republican, conservative, libertarian, strict constructionist, family values guts. They hate everybody’s guts. And they hate everybody who has any. Democrats hate men, women, blacks, whites, Hispanics, gays, straights, the rich, the poor, and the middle class.

Democrats hate Democrats most of all. Witness the policies that Democrats have inflicted on their core constituencies, resulting in vile schools, lawless slums, economic stagnation, and social immobility. Democrats will do anything to make sure that Democratic voters stay helpless and hopeless enough to vote for Democrats.

P.J. Also goes on to say this: “This is not an election on November 2. This is a restraining order.”

And then some.....

(H/T Instapundit)


Here's yet another example of Democrats telling us “Do as we say, not as we do.”

While the President has been decrying the ability of corporations to donate money to political campaigns or pay for campaign ads through proxies, he's kept quiet about labor unions doing exactly the same thing.

Never mind that labor unions are, to all intents and purposes, no different from the very groups the President has been bashing. They are a business, despite what they may claim. The only difference? Labor unions unanimously support the Democrats. (Or at least the union leadership does. That's not necessarily true of the rank-and-file.) Therefore, they get a pass from the President, Speaker Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and the DNC. If the unions supported Republicans, you know darned well the union sponsored ads and campaign contributions would be condemned just as other corporate donations have been.

It's the double standard applied out in the open and publicly.


Dr. Joy Bliss covers how the poor are different from both the non-poor and the poor of other countries. Some of it deals with the reasons for poverty:

Those without socialist ideologies know that poverty in America is often temporary, often by life-style choice, sometimes by bad luck, and often because of dysfunctional life choices and/or character flaws and mental disability and illness.

America's poor are significantly better off than the poor of other nations. In fact, many of our poor would be considered quite wealthy in other nations.


Anthony Watts hosts guest blogger Thomas Fuller on what Fuller calls The League of 2.5.

Fuller makes one error that puts his entire post into question: using only 52 years of CO2 and temperature data to make his case.

As one of those engineering types who deals with data and data analysis on a regular basis, I can safely say that if I based any kind of 'trend' on such a tiny data set I'd quickly find myself called on the carpet, if not fired outright. When it comes to climate a 52 year, 100 year, or 200 year data set is far too small and should be considered a 'snapshot' at best. To get a better idea of an actual long term trend, the data set needs to span 1,000 or more years. (Even 400-some years of data would be far more indicative, something that is available via British Royal Navy logbooks dating back to the late 1500's.)

(H/T Maggie's Farm)


To add some fuel to the fire, so to speak, here's a speech by Czech Republic President Vaclav Klaus addressing climate change and how science is no longer driving the debate, but politics.

Klaus is an economist by trade, considered by many to be absolutely first-rate. He understands modeling and the limitations of modeling. With economics you have large data sets covering hundreds of years and still the computer models used to predict economic activity get it wrong (though usually by a matter of degree, not magnitude). By comparison, climate modeling is crude, with questionable data sets and far too much political influence affecting the outcomes.

One thing I must agree with Klaus upon is this:

To reduce the interpretation of the causality of all kinds of climate changes and of global warming to one variable, CO2, or to a small proportion of one variable – human-induced CO2– is impossible to accept. Elementary rationality and my decades-long experience with econometric modeling and statistical testing of scientific hypotheses tell me that it is impossible to make strong conclusions based on mere correlation of two (or more) time series. In addition to this, it is relevant that in this case such a simple correlation does not exist. The rise of global temperature started approximately 150 years ago but man-made CO2 emissions did not start to grow visibly before the 1940s. Temperature changes also repeatedly moved in the opposite direction than the CO2 emissions trend suggests.

Or as one of my favorite nuclear physicists – Dr. Gregory Greenman – put it, “Correlation does not imply causality.”


OK, I can understand this considering where it came from, but this person has got to get a grip.

If a judge faced impeachment every time they rendered an unpopular ruling we'd be so tied up with impeachment proceedings that nothing would get done, or judges would be so intimidated they wouldn't rule on anything at any time. Call it yet another version of the Law of Unintended Consequences.

So this Oregon Democrat Congressional bozo doesn't like the Supreme Court's decision in the Citizen's United case? Too bad. I'm not aware of any SCOTUS decision that's made everybody happy. It just doesn't happen. And to base his impeachment upon perjury about how Chief Justice Roberts would rule shows the level of asininity to which this Democrat has fallen.

I think this guy would have far better use for his time and our tax dollars than to pursue this doomed effort.


There's nothing quite so powerful as the confessions of a former Leftist. Kathy Shaidle is one such Leftist convert to the Tea party, enlightening us with the 8 things she wishes she'd known (or remembered) when she was a Leftist.

Here's a peak at a couple:

#8: Ronald Reagan wasn't a total jerk.

#6: Michael Moore is a liar.

#2: A lot of progressive heroes were jerks.

As the saying goes, Read The Whole Thing. She covers a lot of territory and her journey to enlightenment is eye-opening.

(H/T Vermont Tiger)


I'd hoped to pull the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout out of the water today, but lousy weather conspired against me. Fortunately warmer/nicer weather arrives starting tomorrow (as I mentioned at the top of the post), making it far more likely BeezleBub and I will finally be able to get it out of the water and back to The Manse. I hope.


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the fall foliage is past peak (but still beautiful), the weather has turned schizophrenic, and where Halloween is a week away.


Give Us A (Commercial) Break!

I don't know if any of you out there have noticed, but the ratio of negative campaign ads to positive ads is seriously skewed to the negative. It seems to me that they're all starting to blend together, making it difficult to differentiate one candidate's ad from another.

All I do know for certain is that I'm sick and tired of it and that I'm not the only one.

Over the past few days I've tracked the total number of ads on our local TV station and those south of the border in Boston, watching about 12 hours of TV over that time. There were an average of 5 campaign ads during every commercial break. Figured 4 commercial breaks every hour that gives us a rough total of 20 ads every hour and 240 ads over the 12 hours I watched TV. Of those 240 ads, only 9 were positive ads, and then only barely positive (meaning they didn't name a specific candidate's opponent and provide negative information about them). That means out of all the ads I tracked less than 4% (3.75%, to be precise) could have been considered positive ads.

That's pretty sad.

One thing I know for sure: I'll be darned glad when November 2nd had come and gone because it means all those ads will disappear...until November of 2011, when the ads for the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primaries will start up. And if that isn't bad enough, presidential hopefuls from both parties considering a run in 2012 will start showing up here in New Hampshire and in Iowa on or sometime shortly after November 3rd of this year.

Couldn't they at least give us a short break before starting their 2-year long bid for the Oval Office? We need time to recuperate from the campaign ad overload from the mid-term elections.


Dispelling The Myths About The Tea Party - Part IV

One of the great tenets of the Left is that wealth is a zero-sum game, meaning they believe that in order for one person to become wealthy that someone else had to become poor.

Those of us who support the Tea party know that belief to be a canard, an excuse to steal wealth from those who created it.

If you aren't sure you believe that, then Bill Whittle has a little lesson about wealth, how it's created, and who benefits. (A hint: Everyone benefits.)


Dispelling The Myths About The Tea Party - Part III

In this rather timely WSJ opinion piece, Peter Berkowitz delves into more reasons why liberals don't (or can't) understand the Tea party movement.

What's worse, they don't even understand the basis or the basics of our form of government, nor do they want to.

Highly educated people say the darndest things, these days particularly about the tea party movement. Vast numbers of other highly educated people read and hear these dubious pronouncements, smile knowingly, and nod their heads in agreement. University educations and advanced degrees notwithstanding, they lack a basic understanding of the contours of American constitutional government.

In their ignorance they see the bliss of a totalitarian state, where they make the decisions for the rest of us poor benighted souls incapable of understanding their superiority.

Yeah. Right.

Unfortunately it is these very same liberals who are the benighted souls incapable of understanding their inferiority to a incredibly large majority of Americans, a majority that understand what can make or break a business, who see the direct effects of poor government and ever more onerous taxes and regulations. In other words, they cannot understand why the Tea parties have been garnering so much support. It comes down a simple concept:

The Tea parties understand the inferiority of the liberal mind set and their inability to see that which is right in front of them – the country can't keep spending money it doesn't have on government programs that don't work run by people who are barely competent enough to run their own lives, let alone anyone else's.

It's easy for liberals to disparage Tea partiers as a resurrection of the Know-Nothing Party of the 1850's, but they have shown themselves to be the modern day Know-Nothings, particularly when it comes to the origin of the Tea party moniker.

That lack was shown quite publicly when the liberals tore into Tea party favorite Sarah Palin for her comment “Party like it's 1773.”

When Sarah Palin told a Tea Party crowd last Monday that it wasn’t time yet to “party like it’s 1773,” segments of the left such as Kos’s founder Markos Moulitsas chortled at her supposed stupidity. Their kneejerk assumption was that Palin was so ignorant that she didn’t even know the date of early events in the American Revolution. But since it was actually the Boston Tea Party (1773) to which she was referring, it was Sarah who had the last laugh.

Commenters and lefty bloggers galore echoed Markos Moulitsas's post. Of course if they'd spent about 30 seconds Googling “Tea Party” and “1773” they would have come across the Boston Tea Party - which took place on December 16, 1773 - they wouldn't have sounded like the smug idiots they proved themselves to be.

So who is it who's misinformed about the modern day Tea parties and spreading myths about its motivations, beliefs, and origins?

You only get one guess....


Some People Really Don't Like Traffic Radar

I have little doubt everyone thinks those radar trailers the various police and sheriff's departments set up along the roads to remind us of our speed are annoying. Sometimes they're surprising, meaning they make us realize we're going faster than we thought we were.

But as annoying as they can be, they're basically harmless. The police don't use them to issue tickets. They're there just to let us know how fast we're going along the stretches of road where they're set up.

Apparently someone here in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire really doesn't like them. At all.

The Laconia [NH] Police Department itself has become a crime statistic after someone recently fired a bullet into the agency's radar trailer, disabling it and forcing expensive repairs.

When Sgt. Gary Hubbard and Off. John Howe opened up the display, they found the flattened remains of a .22-caliber bullet that Clarke believes was fired from a moving vehicle. The bullet caused about $1,000 worth of damage to the display, he said, and nearly missed the actual radar unit which, had it been hit, would have cost a like sum to replace.

Someone has some serious anger issues to deal with.


Thoughts On A Sunday

One of the first things on our To Do list today (after breakfast, of course) was re-arranging the living room and dining room in The Manse. This has been the third configuration since we moved in to The Manse five and half years ago.

The previous iteration had us swapping the living room and room locations, something that seemed to work a bit, but there were definitely downsides to the arrangement. Now we're back to the original arrangement, sort of, with the dining room back towards the rear of The Manse and the living room in the front. The one difference – we've reversed the original set up in the living room so the Official Weekend Pundit Entertainment Center is across from the the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove rather than beside it, kinda.

I know the feline members of the household have made known their displeasure by disappearing while we cleaned and moved and rearranged the furnishings. I don't know if they're perturbed by the actual change or because we didn't consult them first.


It appears Bogie's been busy with work around the Bogie Estates.

She also had the good fortune to make the Roger Waters concert in Hartford, Connecticut. (If you're unfamiliar with Roger Waters, he was formerly with Pink Floyd and wrote most of the music and lyrics for The Wall.)


If we need an example of how multiculturalism ultimately fails, all we have to do is look at Germany. At least the Germans admit it has failed and are no longer willing to put up with that touchy-feelie politically correct crap.

If we need any further examples, they abound: France, Great Britain, and the Netherlands come to mind.

Hopefully the same multi-culti crap will die a much deserved death here in the US as we can see it doesn't work here either.

(H/T Maggie's Farm)


Despite claims to the contrary, it appears the DCCC is abandoning incumbent Congressional Democrats in districts they see as lost in order to focus their efforts (and funds) on districts where they believe they are either a lock or stand a good chance of winning.

That ought to give comfort to those Democrats cut loose by their national party.

(H/T Pirate's Cove)


It appears that a number of the people at tending Obama's MTV interview event were actors hired to fill seats and ask questions.

Turns out all the audience members who asked questions were actually actors who auditioned for their “roles” in the charade. They had to submit their questions at the audition so Obungler would know what they were going to ask and how to answer them, and they also had to state their political views, proving, yet again, that the dolt cannot do anything if it isn’t scripted or can’t be read off a TelePrompTer.

Talk about astroturf!


Do you like to make friends and influence people? Then this isn't how you do it.

I'm sure anyone can influence advertisers by threatening them. Yeah, that always works.


And that's the (abbreviated) news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the foliage colors have reached peak, the leaf peepers likewise, and where boats are quickly disappearing from the lake.


Dispelling The Myths About The Tea Party - Part II

Here's the second in a series of videos from Bill Whittle explaining how it is the members of the Tea parties are smarter than the ruling elite by a few orders of magnitude, particularly when it comes to the economy.

Part I can be found here.


Prosecutorial Misconduct In Washington State?

It's bad enough when a prosecutor uses his office to harass a law-abiding citizen. It's even worse when he uses his office to also try and kill the business he manages through malicious and specious criminal and civil cases that have been thrown out of court time and time again.

What makes it even worse than that is when he's doing it at the behest of 'well-connected' abutters to the business, which has been in existence for 84 years.

The business in question? The Kitsap [Washington] Rifle and Revolver Club.

The aforementioned well-connected abutter bought a home near the KRRC and decided he didn't like the noise coming from the club. Never mind that the club has been there decades longer than the abutter's home. Never mind the abutter was aware of the club's existence before he bought the home. Using the Kitsap County DA as his personal errand boy to drive the club out of existence and harassing the manager with groundless criminal prosecutions is in itself criminal and could be seen as violating the First, Second, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments. Maybe it's time for the Washington state Attorney General to investigate this misconduct. And if AG's office won't take action, then maybe the US Attorney should do so.

I have to wonder to which party the DA and the abutter belong. If I had to guess, I'd say it isn't the GOP.


The EPA Is At It Again

It's bad enough we have to deal with 10% ethanol content in our gasoline all in the name of clean air and less dependence upon foreign oil sources. Considering that ethanol provides neither makes it even more of a pain. All ethanol does is eat up tax dollars (it's heavily subsidized), provides nothing in the way of reduced carbon footprint (we use just as much petroleum growing the crops and processing them into alcohol as we would if we did nothing), and increases food prices because farmland that in the past has been used for food crops are now being used to grow corn as feedstock for ethanol production. Ethanol in gasoline also decreases fuel economy (ethanol has ~50% of the energy of an equivalent volume of gasoline).

There's also one more bad side effect of ethanol many of us who are boaters have to deal with on a constant basis – fuel separation. When water gets into the gasoline/ethanol mixture the ethanol separates out of the gas and creates a sludge that clogs fuel filters and fuel injectors. In a marine environment it is inevitable that water will get into fuel tanks, mostly through condensation, because marine environments are humid.

Now the EPA wants to add insult to injury by increasing the ethanol content from 10% to 15%. That means more tax subsidies to ethanol producers (meaning more of your money coming out of your wallet to pay for it), more pressure on food prices as more farmland is used to grow corn for ethanol production, and even poorer fuel economy for you vehicle (which means even more of your money coming out of your wallet to pay for it), with little to show for it in regards to air pollution, carbon footprint, or reduction in dependence upon foreign oil sources.

If ethanol was such a great deal there would be no need to subsidize it. And with a higher alcohol content the fuel separation problems will get even worse. The existing problem seen in boats costs the consumer millions in repairs and remediation. It will only get worse if the ethanol content is increased.

By the way, have you noticed the EPA doesn't mandate use of ethanol in aviation gasoline? That's because they know there would be lawsuits up the wazoo as the number of plane crashes (and fatalities) would skyrocket due to fuel starvation caused by the ethanol separating out of the gas and clogging the fuel systems. (This refers of course to piston-engined aircraft.)


Dispelling The Myths About The Tea Party

It's obvious from reading the number of screeds decrying the Tea parties and their alleged anti-abortion, pro-fundamentalist, anti-poor/pro-rich beliefs that far too many on the Left have absolutely no understanding of the movement or of the people within it. The Left has ascribed so many patently false motivations to the Tea parties that it's difficult for those wanting to know what the they're all about to find the truth.

First, I have a small bit of advice: Listen to what people are saying about the Tea parties. Which ones are sounding the most hysterical and screaming about the Tea parties and what they stand for the loudest? Chances are they're the ones that are lying. And who is screaming the loudest?? Why, the Left, of course.

Second, take a look at the Contract From America. It explains the main tenets of the Tea party movement. It's a short read, with only 10 parts, and each part only a small single paragraph. It will take all of two minutes to read.

Third: Take look at this video by Bill Whittle. It pretty much explains the core beliefs of the Tea party and its supporters. (This video is only Part 1, with more to follow.)

Nowhere in the video or the Contract From America is any mention made of religion, abortion, homosexuality, or stealing from the poor to give to the rich. (By the way, who would want to 'steal' from the poor? They don't have any money to steal, something the Left always ignores.)

It's all about letting Washington and the various state governments know that we're all sick and tired of being told by people nowhere near as wise as we are nor anywhere near as experienced how to live our lives. We're all sick and tired of having our hard earned money taken from us to be spent on things we don't need, don't want, or find so wasteful as to be no better than theft.

Any questions?


Old Spice Campaign Ad

I saw this and started laughing. It's a great take on the recent Old Spice ads. The ad is by Republican candidate Jerry Labriola running for Connecticut's 3rd Congressional District.

(H/T Cubachi)


Thoughts On A Sunday

The fall weather has finally asserted itself, with freezing cold nights and cool, breezy days. Peak foliage is running behind schedule here in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire, but the cold nights should help speed up the change in colors a bit.


The cooler weather hasn't required us to fire up the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove yet, but that time will be coming soon enough. For now setting the thermostat to 68°F when I come down in the morning and letting the furnace run for half an hour is all it takes to keep the house warm the rest of the day. Once the sun rises above the hill to our east the light floods into the dining and living rooms and the master bedroom upstairs, warming them enough to keep the house comfortable without the need to use either the furnace or woodstove.

That won't last much longer for once the much colder weather arrives we'll need the woodstove to keep things toasty warm. The only time we'll run the furnace is on those days or nights when it's below zero (the woodstove can't quite keep up when it's that cold out).


US News & World Report's Mary Kate Cary says Obama's Rolling Stone proves he's arrogant and out of touch with the voters.

Well, yeah. We've known that for quite some time. Only now the MSM is catching on?


As regulatory control increases on medical research and taxes will be imposed on the sale of medical technology by various provisions in ObamaCare, venture capitalists who would normally fund start-ups wishing to exploit the new technologies have decided the hassles aren't worth it and are putting their capital to use in other areas.

Gee, I seem to recall a number of people warned that the Law of Unintended Consequences would come into play and the effects would end up hurting all of us in the long run. If the VCs no longer see medical technology as a viable or desirable investment, much of the new technology won't be developed...or at least it won't be developed here.

Yeah, that ought to be a real boost to the economy and the health care industry.


Oh, lordy, I remember these!

My mom had one and we would play with it from time to time. Of course today you'd need one that has tens and hundreds of dollars columns.


If the idiots in Washington are wondering why there aren't more new jobs, then perhaps they should read this in order to get a clue.

(H/T BogieBlog)


The Barrister has reposted some handy tips about surviving winter in New England.

I'm beginning to think I should dig out some posts of my own from the Weekend Pundit archives that deal with the same subject, though mine have a slightly different focus. But I'll wait a little longer before reposting them (after some updating). Look for them right around Thanksgiving, if not sooner.


I have to agree with this statement made by the Redneck Tree-Hugger:

Barack Obama is the best thing that has happened to America in the last 100 years. Truly, he is the savior of America's future. He is the best thing ever.

Read the whole thing. Once you do, you'll also agree with him.

(H/T Maggie's Farm)


Science? We don' need no stinkin' science!

That's true...if you don't mind sucking yet another 1$ trillion out of the economy along with making 7 million more jobs disappear.


Jay Tea deconstructs liberal beliefs, specifically in relation to law.

[M]any of today's liberals have a very bizarre notion on what "the law" is about, is for, and means.


[S]o many of the left seem to think that simply passing a law makes a problem go away.


Then wrap your head around this: it's also a tenet of the left that "bad" laws should just be ignored.

So, in effect, they want law to reflect what they believe to be right, even if that belief is momentary. Should we all follow that belief all we would have is anarchy. (Yeah, it's a bit of a stretch, but all we have to do is look at places where such belief is common, like Somalia. Anarchy has certainly made that place a paradise.)


Gee, I feel safer already!

It turns out that President Obama's new National Security Adviser – Tom Donilon - really doesn't like the US military.

That's OK, because Secretary of Defense Robert Gates doesn't like Donilon either, and for good reason.

According to Bob Woodward’s new book, Obama’s Wars, which has somehow gotten less attention at the Times than Woodward’s Bush-era tomes, Gates described Donilon as clueless when it comes to the military and was deeply offended by the disrespect the former Fannie Mae lobbyist showed to senior military leadership.

The new National Security adviser was a lobbyist for Fannie Mae? For cryin' out loud, I have better qualifications than Donilon! At least I actually worked in the defense industry for 20 years!

That really gives me the warm and fuzzies.


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the leaf peepers have arrived in droves, the leaves still haven't reached peak, and where our boat will soon be coming out of the water.


Middle Class Americans Cutting Spending...Again

Some people seem to be surprised that middle class Americans have been reining in their discretionary spending and keeping a close eye on the cost of essentials.

Speaking as one of those middle class Americans, I can tell you I'm not surprised at all.

Even though both my wife and I have jobs, we understand that the economy is still shaky and that either of our jobs could go away tomorrow. We've reduced our spending to essentials, including repairs to The Manse. Eating out now means a quick stop at the local Wendy's, if that. Even essential purchases are scrutinized to see if we can find less expensive goods that will do the job. There are no plans to go out and buy that neato 48” Sharp Aquos LCD TV we've been eying for over a year now or to spend a few hundred dollars for repairs to The Boat that we can handle ourselves for a fraction of the cost. We're trying to pay down our debt as much as possible in as short a period of time as we can. We've even been refinancing The Manse to lower our monthly payment and shorten the term of our mortgage in an effort to make sure we'll have a little more cash in our pockets at the end of each month.

Our anxiety over the continuing recession is the same as millions of other Americans in the same situation. We don't want to spend money we may need later if things get any worse. We want to pay down what debt we do have if things get any worse. And from what we've seen of economic numbers, including the unemployment for September, things aren't getting better despite what the White House and the Congressional Democrat leadership may claim.

NOW Endorses Jerry Brown?

This was too good not link.

Apparently the National Organization of Women (NOW) has destroyed its last shred of credibility (as if it's had any over the past decade or so) by endorsing Jerry Brown for governor after he or one of his staffers were heard calling his Republican opponent, Meg Whitman, “a whore.”

This endorsement shows how far a once effective and respected organization has fallen. NOW used to stand for equal rights for women, showing women were capable of doing most of the same jobs as men, and worked hard to do away with laws and policies that discriminated against women. But over the past couple of decades it has degenerated into something that has worked hard to revictimize women, denigrate women who choose to stay home and raise their children, criminalize men, and has supported measures and causes that benefit no one except NOW and its misanthropist leadership.

Betty Friedan must be spinning in her grave.

(H/T Instapundit)


Keep Those Pesky Varmints Away

This is just so cool! I can see one of these being used to keep the varmints away from trash cans, vegetable gardens, and peaceful Tea party protests.

This video shows the basic construction:

This gives a demo of full auto mode:

And this video demos the single shot mode:

This obviously appeals to the tech geek part of me. You can even find build instructions and a parts list here!


Gallup Numbers Dismay Democrats

You know the Democrats must be soiling their undies when they prefer Scott Rasmussen's poll results in regards to the upcoming election over that of Gallup.

Maybe it's because the Gallup poll shows Democrat chances for retaining control of the House are far worse than Rasmussen's poll.

Yesterday, Gallup delivered its first 2010 "likely voter" poll and the results floored the political community. In the generic ballot question, which asks which party a voter would favor in a generic House contest, Gallup gave the GOP a 46% to 42% edge. But then Gallup applied two versions of its "likely voter" turnout model. In its "high turnout model," Republicans led Democrats by 53% to 40%. In its "low turnout model," the GOP edge was a stunning 56% to 38%. That kind of margin in favor of Republicans has never been seen in Gallup surveys.


But regardless of where likely voters are right now, it's a strange political year when Democrats start consoling themselves with Scott Rasmussen, whose polls they have long disparaged as being biased towards Republicans.

Usually Democrats don't like Rasmussen because of his perceived bias. But because his numbers are slightly less worse than Gallup's, they like him just fine this time around.

Despite what the polls show we must remember that the only poll that counts is the one on November 2nd. The Democrats will have no way of discounting the results of that one.


The Return Of Smoot-Hawley

It's bad enough the Obama/Pelosi/Reid triumvirate are trying to make a bad situation worse with their poor handling (intentional or otherwise) of the economy. Now they want to bring back a horrible idea that helped turn a moderately severe recession into the Great Depression with their version of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act.

...[W]e're close to repeating the mother of all policy errors, the one made not in 1937 but in 1930—the one that started the Great Depression. We're on track to resurrect the 1930 Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act.


Last week the House passed the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act. It's an amendment that gives dangerous new protectionist powers to the notorious Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, the proximate cause of the global Great Depression, which after all these years is still on the books. Democrats—all but five of whom voted in favor of the bill last week—would do well to remember that in 1932 Franklin Delano Roosevelt ran as a free-trader, pledging to lower Smoot-Hawley's tariff walls. The 99 Republicans who voted aye should know that Herbert Hoover's name lives in infamy for erecting them. Instead, Wednesday's vote was a bipartisan move to build those walls higher using currencies as the bricks and mortar.

The bill, if passed by the Senate and signed by the president, would mandate that the Department of Commerce take a foreign country's currency interventions into account in determining whether its trading practices are unfair. In the case of China—the target at which this bill is aimed—Commerce would determine that the amount by which the yuan is allegedly undervalued.

When Smoot-Hawley took effect, world trade ground to a halt overnight. Between the tariffs the US now placed upon all kinds of foreign goods and the retaliatory tariffs placed on American goods shipped overseas, all goods became too expensive and the workers and consumers around the world paid the price as economies around the collapsed.

Now the idiots in Congress want to do it all over again! Have these morons learned nothing from history? Wait, of course they haven't. In fact, they're recycling ideas from the FDR era and doing it just as poorly as it was done back then, not bothering to even understand why they were a bad idea than and are an even worse idea now.

If the aim of the Democrats is to devastate the American economy and the world economy, then they're on the right track with this really really dangerous bill.

They are doing just what I expected them to do. I warned you folks about it starting back in January 2009, again in April 2009, then again in September 2009, and once more in June of this year.

It seems they are bound and determined to take us back to the bad old days of the 1930's in America.


Thoughts On A Sunday

After all the wind and rain of Thursday and Friday, Saturday dawned a bright and brisk fall day. While it wasn't cold, it was slightly chilly in the morning, but it warmed up in the afternoon.

While we did lose power for a couple of hours Thursday night/early Friday morning, there was no damage to be seen around The Manse.

That suits me just fine.


We haven't made it out on to the lake lately due to a mechanical problem with the Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout. It will run, but it won't go fast. We may take it out for a slow jaunt next weekend, but I have a feeling it will come out of the lake for the season just after then.

And just like that, the boating season will come to an end.


Ron of I Remember JFK regales us with the history of the telephone.

I know I am dating myself when I say I remember having a party line when my family lived in Maine (1962-1964). For those of you unfamiliar with the term, a party line used a single phone circuit with two or more homes hooked up to it. Each home had its own distinctive ring pattern because the phones in all the homes sharing the line would ring at the same time. If I recall correctly ours was two short rings followed by one long ring. The party line was a means to keep the cost of providing phone service to rural areas to a minimum, but at times it was a big inconvenience when you had to wait for someone else to finish with their phone call before placing your own.


For the first time this season I had to fire up the furnace.

It was in the 30's this morning, with the inside temp just above 60ºF at 8AM. So I went into the basement of The Manse, opened the gas valve and turned on the power to the furnace. Then I went back up the stairs and set the thermostat of 67ºF. Fifteen minutes later the chill was gone and the thermostat was cut back.

While BeezleBub and Deb thought a fire in the Official Weekend Pundit Woodstove was a good idea, I didn't want to go to all the trouble knowing it would overheat The Manse. Since I was up well before they were this morning using the furnace won out over the woodstove.


This idea ought to work just fine:

Tax all the millionaires and billionaires away.

That ought to make the economy as right as rain!

Yeah. Sure.

(H/T Instapundit)


US freight rail traffic is up, so one has to wonder if new economic activity is driving freight volumes.

On the other hand, it was reported that trucking freight volumes are down. Could the increase in rail traffic be due to freight shipments being shifted from trucks to rail cars?

(H/T Maggie's Farm)


Talk about the Law of Unintended Consequences coming into play!

If the EPA has its way, the cost of replacing a door in a home could balloon from ~$490 to over $2300.


Because of the remote possibility of lead being present in and around the area where a door is being replaced, the EPA has decided all kinds of new requirements will be imposed on anyone replacing said door.

Read The Whole Thing.

(H/T Pirate's Cove)


If you need any more proof the One Nation rally was not all it was cracked up to be, all you need to do is look at the two photos in Cap'n Teach's post. The differences between the One Nation rally (the first photo) and Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor rally (the second photo) are striking.

Cap'n Teach also points us to Da TechGuy's comparison of the post-One Nation rally trash and that of the 9-12 rally a year ago. Our conclusion? Leftists are slobs. They don't know how to pick up after themselves and expect others to clean up for them.

Jay Tea also comments about the difference in attitudes between the attendees of the two rallies.


Bogie gave notice to her employer last week and is moving on to something entirely different for her.

Good luck, Bogie!


Red light cameras are bad enough. But now California wants to install stop sign cameras? Really? How much weirder can California possibly become?


Glenn Reynolds writes about the Tea Party, its dominance in this election cycle, and why it's not going away any time soon.

I told you so.

On April 15, 2009, as the first nationwide wave of Tea Party protests broke out, I wrote: “What’s most striking about the tea-party movement is that most of the organizers haven’t ever organized, or even participated, in a protest rally before. General disgust has drawn a lot of people off the sidelines and into the political arena, and they are already planning for political action after today....

“This influx of new energy and new talent is likely to inject new life into small-government politics around the nation. The mainstream Republican Party still seems limp and disorganized. This grassroots effort may revitalize it. Or the tea-party movement may lead to a new third party that may replace the GOP, just as the GOP replaced the fractured and hapless Whigs."

Fast-forward to the present, and the Tea Party movement -- which didn’t really exist until about the time I wrote those words -- is now the single most powerful political force in the nation.

Democratic and Republican politicians alike fear it, and increasing numbers of Americans (including, in recent months, increasing numbers of African-Americans according to a PJTV Tea Party tracking poll) identify with the Tea Party movement and say they are more likely to vote for candidates it supports, and less likely to vote for candidates it opposes.

If any political party becomes unresponsive to its supporters it doesn't survive. The GOP has been ignoring its base by pandering to the RINOs and alienating the very people they need. The Tea Party is a wake up call to the leadership, telling them to lead, follow, or get out of the way.

The Democrats aren't much better, ignoring the working men and women that have been their rank and file and falling under the sway of those who mouth the words but couldn't care one iota about average Americans.

Both parties are in danger of being swept aside if they don't start listening to the people they're supposed to serve.


And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the foliage is taking on its fall colors, the leaf peepers have appeared, and where the local farms are still harvesting tomatoes!


Hey, Where Is Everybody?

The Left-wing One Nation Working Together rally in Washington DC has turned out to be a total bust.

As Jay Tea of Wizbang fame reports, the coalition supporting and organizing the rally was a list of just about every socialist, communist, or racist organizations on could think of, including:

Sojourners: the far-left allegedly religious coalition secretly funded by George Soros.

The SEIU: Barack Obama's purple-shirted Brute Squad.

Rainbow PUSH Coalition: Jesse Jackson's non-profit that he used to pay off his mistress after she bore his illegitimate daughter. Hired former Congressman and convicted sex offender Mel Reynolds after his release from prison.

National Council of La Raza: "La Raza" is Spanish for "The Race." They've faced numerous charges of being racial separatists and supremacists.

AFL-CIO: A subsidiary of La Cosa Nostra, Inc.

Democracy For America: Howard Dean's private PAC.

International Socialist Organization: the name says it all.

Detroit Democratic Socialists Of America: see above.

Democratic Socialists of America: see above, again.

Communist Party USA: COME ON, PEOPLE!

ANSWER Coalition: literally, a Communist front group.

Coffee Party Progressives: yet another astroturfed attempt to discredit the Tea Party movement.

Code Pink: the anti-war psychopaths and sociopaths who found common cause with the lunatic Cindy Sheehan.
Why would anyone in Middle America (meaning most if us), want anything to do with any of these groups, let alone support their overblown rally? The answer: no one did.

As Cap'n Teach reports, the turnout was..umm...nowhere near what the organizers expected.

[H]ere’s the best photo I can find of attendance. No overhead shots as of yet.

Lots of empty space, eh?

Apparently at one point One Nation was hoping for up to 800,000 attendees. If they got 100,000 I'd be real surprised. That's nowhere near what Glenn Beck got for his rally this summer (~500,000) and a small fraction of the 9-12 Tea party rally held last year.

The One Nation rally can be summed up with one word: FAIL.


Party Unity Is Fracturing Across The Nation

With this election season we're seeing a real shift in voter perceptions about government, and particularly the one in Washington. Both Democrats and Republicans are coming under public scrutiny to a level never seen before. As I mentioned in a previous post, the Internet has made it impossible for Congressional shenanigans to be hidden from the American people and that continuous exposure has made the people distrustful of anyone or anything in Washington.

This exposure has done more than just make the people distrustful, it has had the same effect on the two major parties, with the Democrats taking the brunt of it.

Everyone talks about the tensions between the Republican establishment, such as it is, and the tea-party-leaning parts of its base. But are you looking at what's happening with the Democrats? Tensions between President Obama and his supporters tore into the open this week as never before, signifying a real and developing fracturing of his party.


There is a war beginning in the Democratic Party, and the president has lost control of his base.

The Democratic Party right now is showing signs of coming apart under the pressure of the election and two years of an unpopular presidency. But it's not a split in two, with the left versus the establishment. It's more like a splintering, with left-leaning activists distancing themselves from the party's politicians, and moderate politicians distancing themselves from Mr. Obama.

And part of what's driving it is what is driving the evolution of the Republican Party. The Internet changed everything. Everyone has facts now, knows who voted how and why. New thought leaders spring up and lead in new directions. Total transparency leads to party fracturing. Information dings unity. We are in new territory.

Obama wanted transparency in government, but somehow I doubt this is what he had in mind. Every back-door deal is being exposed. Every piece-of-crap bill is being gone over with a fine toothed comb and being shown for the destructive legislation it is. Every budget item is scrutinized and every tax increase lambasted for the theft it is. Every legislative failure is analyzed to death and every 'victory' is shredded in the court of public opinion.

About the only thing that isn't transparent are the behind the scenes machinations of the Obama Administration and the congressional Democrats, something The One promised wouldn't happen on his watch.

There's no need to guess why the American public is pissed off and why the Democrat Party is starting to come apart at the seams. Not that the GOP is much better.

The contest between the GOP establishment, the RINOs, and the new breed of fiscal conservatives known as the Tea party has caused fractures within the Republican party as well. While those fractures don't appear to be as wide or as numerous as those seen in the Democrat Party, they're still there and have given pause to the GOP leadership at the state and national level. Candidates, particularly those seen as RINOs, like Mike Castle in Delaware and Charlie Crist in Florida, have been soundly trounced by Tea party backed candidates. The GOP leadership hasn't yet realized that business as usual won't fly this time around. Until they do they will see their hand-picked candidates fall to fiscally conservative outsiders tired of seeing the GOP act more like the Democrat Party Lite.

What will come of this fracturing within both parties? Will we see one party wither away to be replaced with another because it cannot adapt to changes made by the American people? Will the power of one party be so weakened due to internal divisions that it will become a long term minority party?

Only time will answer these questions.