January 01, 2011

Happy New Year

May your life be as good as mine.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:38 PM in Life | Comments (0)

April 14, 2010

Submit Your Questions

And I will provide answers.

Posted by Charles Austin at 06:17 PM in Life | Comments (0)

April 04, 2010

Answers

Why does Barack Obama have so many who can be legitimately called Marxists in his orbit?

This has been a very difficult question to answer correctly, because it can very easily devolve into assuming I can peer into a man's soul to question his motives and I am loathe to do that. I must admit that this is pop psychology conjecture on my part, but I believe it is because it is what he knows and reflects the environments he grew up in. Many of these environments were from his childhood and he had little control over that, but as he grew into manhood he seemed to continue to seek out similar people with similar backgrounds rather than disassociating himself from people who frankly don't hold the same beliefs about America, human nature, or liberty that I have.

A music teacher once told me that we like what we know. Here is what we do know about the environments and influences on Barack Obama as he grew up. From his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, who he has stated is his core influence and whose life story reads as someone who desperately wanted to be something she wasn't; to his father, Barack Obama, Sr., a post-colonial socialist whom he never knew and rarely met but oddly projects onto in his biographies; to his comfortably leftist grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Dunham, who he lived with from the age of ten while his mother studied and worked in Indonesia and who introduced young Barack to Frank Marshall Davis who is a real piece of work (communist and author of a novel glamorizing child molestation); to his time at Occidental College, Columia University, and Harvard Law School, of which we know very little because Barack Obama refuses to open the records on these periods in his life, necessarily leaving the door somewhat ajar for wild conjectures by those inclined to do so; to his wife, Michelle Obama, whose hostility to her native country was epitomized by her famously saying in 2008, "For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country;" to his minister, Jeremiah Wright, whose racism and anti-Americanism has been thoroughly documented; to his alliances with ACORN; to political and social connections in Chicago with the communist terrorists Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn; well, as I wrote earlier, it is what he knows and seemingly is comfortable with.

A more compact and vicious version of this that frankly does question motives by Spengler can be found in the last paragraph here. John Podhoretz composed a rather hostile response to Spengler. And as Jonah Goldberg says, Michael Ledeen moderates here. Finally, Joseph Bottum asks, can't we all (on the right) just get along?

Now that the McNabb detractors in Philly got what they wanted, will the Eagles finally get over the hump and win a SuperBowl in the new "Kevin Kolb era"; or will this move simply highlight the lack of supporting cast a pro-bowl caliber QB (McNabb)had surrounding him all those years.

No and no. I won't argue that trading McNabb was the wrong thing to do. This is analagous to the situation Green Bay faced a couple of years ago with Bret Favre and Aaron Rodgers. Unfortunately for Philadelphia, the Cowboys are getting better faster than the Eagles in the NFC East, the Giants remain only two years removed from beating the juggernaut New England Patriots in the Super Bowl, and who knows, maybe Mike Shanahan will be able to keep Dan Snyder at bay long enough to take advantage of the talent that Washington does have before he wears out his welcome in four, no, make that three years. It was unlikely the Eagles were going to win a Super Bowl with Donovan McNabb or Kevin Kolb. It is true that Donovan McNabb was long underappreciated by the fans of Philadelphia and while they will miss him they will also be pleaseed with Kevin Kolb, at least until the next QB in waiting shows up on the Eagles bench. Before Jay Cutler arrived I kept hoping Donovan McNabb would end up in Chicago, but that isn't going to happen now.

Will the Congress and Administration succeed in enacting a VAT (Value Added Tax) this year to pay for (a portion of) ObamaCare?

Only if they act before the 112th Congress is sworn in.

ANSWER REVISION

Will C.J. Spiller be the first RB drafted?

Probably not. In fact, I doubt that he will be the second running back drafted. The first two running backs drafted will probably be Ryan Mathews and Jahvid Best, unless Jerry Jones somehow gets a top ten draft pick in the next week and decides he need another Felix Jones type of player to back up Felix Jones. As to which of those rookie running backs would be the best fantasy pickup will depend a lot on who takes them. I just know that I am feeling good about heading into next season with Michael Turner, Rashard Mendenhall and LeSean McCoy as my top three running backs, especially with the latter two each taking over the starting job a year earlier than I expected.

Posted by Charles Austin at 08:55 PM in Life | Comments (1)

April 03, 2010

Submit Your Questions

And I will provide answers.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:40 PM in Life | Comments (2)

Answers

Will C.J. Spiller be the first RB drafted?

You are not looking for an answer so much as a prediction. However, in an otherwise relatively weak year for RBs (but primarily because the rest of the draft field is unusually strong this year) he probably should be the first drafted for his combination of speed and size. A lot will depend on the draft order and perhaps a trade or two before the draft.

Is President Obama a hard core Marxist or just a corrupt Chicago progressive politician?

First of all, note that these are not mutually exclusive options. Only Barack Obama can answer the former question definitively, but I don't think so. I do have substantial reservations about his entire philosophical approach which I regard as progressive rather than Marxist, but unless the next election gets cancelled that's more than I am willing to say. Using Marxist techniques and rhetoric does not automatically make one (or The One) a Marxist, hardcore or otherwise. Why Barack Obama has so many who can be legitimately called Marxists in his orbit is another question for another day. As to the latter question, Barack Obama has learned his Chicago politician lessons well, but the type of corruption implied is something different than most people are accustomed to. Chicago style political corruption is geared towards consolidating and strengthening their grip on power, which is what really matters to them, rather than enriching themselves financially. This is also a common problem with progressives, though I wouldn't necessarily conflate Chicago political corruption with "classic" progressivism. FWIW, those in power do seem to have money fall into their laps in ways that most of us don't, but that isn't their primary motivation.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:39 PM in Life | Comments (0)

March 27, 2010

Submit Your Questions

And I will provide answers.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:00 PM in Life | Comments (1)

Answers

Why did the chicken cross the road?

Because the road started it and the chicken was never one to back down.

Yay, comments are working again!

An unusual question demands an unusual answer. Four.

What was the *real* reason Illinois was excluded from the NCAA Tourney?

So Notre Dame could be the eighth Big East team in the NCAA Tournament. The committee attempted to disguise this travesty by giving them a #6 seed.

How much longer will the American Republic last?

For all intents and purposes the Republic as defined in the founding documents is already gone. Clear, unambiguous language such as, "Congress shall make no law...," is routinely ignored by all three branches of government in lieu of some ever changing self-serving greater good. The proper questions now are when will another such Republic arise and where.

Can you tell Marc I miss him?

Yes, but I haven't seen him for over a year now.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:00 PM in Life | Comments (1)

March 17, 2010

Submit Your Questions

And I will provide answers.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:20 PM in Life | Comments (4)

December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

Say something nice.

Posted by Charles Austin at 09:54 PM in Life | Comments (3)

December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

Or Happy Christmas if you prefer.

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:03 PM in Life | Comments (1)

December 12, 2009

Damn It, I Don't Want to Talk About Politics

Here's a Facebook comment thread response I am posting for personal reasons that started with Iowahawk's fabulous Fables of the Reconstruction. You can look the thread up if you are so inclined at my Facebook site. And so, without further ado:

No [name redacted], I understand the role carbon dioxide has in the greenhouse effect, though extending this concept from a small lab closed environment to the closed environment of the entire earth is far from a simple exercise. I'm not terribly familiar with the literature, but I have a reasonable college level physics understanding of why CO2 and methane are especially powerful greenhouse gases. I also have some awareness of the feedback mechanisms the earth has, e.g., increasing its albedo with additional cloud cover from the increased wator vapor in the air. As usual this stuff is real complex and the feedback loops are still not fully understood, which is another problem I have with the models since the true believers have a demonstrated capacity to ignore or discount data which doesn't fit the narrative, but I digress. I did however notice that, as usual, you are defaulting to the debating tactics of trying to change the subject and attacking me by questioning my elementary understanding of the science rather than actually refuting the information provided. Gee, do you have a problem with basic statistics? You see, we can all play the game that way if you choose, but it really doesn't get us very far. I'm really trying to avoid the heat without light nature of these conversations. Perhaps you'd like to join me?

Anyway, if your model is going to claim that CO2 is the primary cause of GW, then you have to explain why previous CO2 increases in the atmosphere didn't generate temperature increases, as well what else caused GW in the past when CO2 concentrations were not as high. Mind you, I'm not saying GW isn't happening, nor am I saying that AGW caused primarily by CO2 isn't happening, nor that we shouldn't be trying to lower CO2 emissions for lots of reasons. In fact, as I have noted before, as soon as those who are most adamantly calling this a crisis start acting like it is a crisis by facilitating the immediate construction of another 200 nuclear reactors to allow for the retirement of coal fired power plants and the planned conversion to electric cars, I'll begin to take them a little more seriously rather than regarding the so-called crisis as the means to the end around to implement a significant element of the transnational progressive agenda, but I digress.

What I am saying is that the predictive power of the bien pensant models is highly questionable and still extremely debatable, and I was saying this long before the CRU leaks. FWIW, I believe that variations in the radiation from the sun that hits the earth -- whether it is due to the level of radiation emiited by the sun, varations in the earth's orbit, flucuations in the earth's magentic fields, and other factors and feedback loops we still don't fully understand -- is vastly more important to whatever GW is going on than the AGW caused by CO2 emissions. Can I back all this up with science that will satisfy you? Of course not, but that's why I used the word believe. For fun, note how often that word shows up in the writings of those who most advocate AGW and the one-world government solutions, and yet, for them the debate is over! But again, I digress.

Given the history of those who claim the sky is falling -- Malthus, Erlich, Holdren, et al -- you'll have to pardon me for asking for more than their Henny Penny like conjectures before turning my future over to their utopian schemes. I'm old enough to remember the first Earth Day when the sky was falling meme was that we were on the edge of a new Ice Age. And now many, if not most, of the very same people are now saying the sky is falling for a meme that is 180 degrees out of phase with what they were saying 30 years ago. Has the science really matured that much in 30 years that we can be so confident in our predictions now? How about we wait another 30 years and see what the sky is falling meme is then before acting?

Of course, YMMV.

Posted by Charles Austin at 01:41 PM in Politics | Comments (1)

November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Turkey Day in Kirkwood!

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:09 PM in Life | Comments (1)

July 08, 2009

How Can Everyone Pass This Up?

Kim Jong Ill

I hope it hurts.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:03 PM in Media | Comments (8)

July 07, 2009

Wow

Just wow:

A blinded man has seen his wife for the first time after surgeons gave him back his sight using one of his teeth. Martin Jones' canine was pulled out so a tiny optical lens could be fitted to it, then the tooth was inserted in his eye socket. The 42-year-old lost his left eye and was totally blinded in the right 12 years ago when a tub of molten aluminium exploded in his face at the scrapyard where he worked... The tooth was implanted in his cheek for three months to grow blood vessels and new tissue. Once it was moved into his eye it was under two weeks until Mr Jones could see.

blind man tooth.jpg

Posted by Charles Austin at 06:25 PM in Life | Comments (0)

July 05, 2009

A New Blog

At least to me: Reboot Congress, with a lot of coverage of local tea party happenings.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:23 PM in Blog | Comments (0)

July 04, 2009

Austin Airs Doubts On Powell Agenda

Powell Airs Doubts on Obama Agenda

Posted by Charles Austin at 08:10 PM in Politics | Comments (0)

Sarah Palin

By now you know she is resigning as Governor of Alaska on July 26. The speculation I've read all over the place is bizarre and much of the commentary from her detractors has been truly despicable. I don't know what she is planning to do but I will note that she is less of a longshot for the presidency in 2012 that Barack Obama was four years ago today for 2008.

Posted by Charles Austin at 08:02 PM in Politics | Comments (4)

June 28, 2009

The Full Scope of the Tragedy Has Finally Been Revealed

Deepak Chopra informs: Michael Jackson was working on a song about climate change in the days before his death.

Posted by Charles Austin at 09:34 AM in Pop Culture | Comments (1)

June 27, 2009

Entrenched Agent of the Status Quo

The heat is on (at least until Waxman-Markey takes effect):

Hours after the House passed landmark legislation meant to curb greenhouse gas emissions and create an energy-efficient economy, President Barack Obama on Saturday urged senators to show courage and follow suit. The sharply debated bill's fate is unclear in the Senate, and Obama used his weekly radio and Internet address to ratchet up pressure on the 100-seat chamber. "My call to every senator, as well as to every American, is this," he said. "We cannot be afraid of the future. And we must not be prisoners of the past. Don't believe the misinformation out there that suggests there is somehow a contradiction between investing in clean energy and economic growth."

Rarely has so much dishonesty been packed into so few words. The man truly has a gift. Anyone opposed to his power grab and tax increases is afraid of the future and spreading disinformation by virtue of not accepting the ever growing empty promises of this increasingly empty suit. I will admit that I am afraid of his proposed future.

Obama said the bill would create jobs, make renewable energy profitable and decrease America's dependence on foreign oil.

This from a man who has never created a job or turned a profit. Of course one way to reduce our dependence on foreign oil is to force everyone to stop using oil altogether, regardless of the consequences. It's not the unintended consequences of this legislation I'm worried about as much as the intended consequences.

"It will spur the development of low-carbon sources of energy everything from wind, solar and geothermal power to safer nuclear energy and cleaner coal," he said.

Really. We already have safer nuclear energy and could implement it without this legislation. Just curious, but any idea when any more of it might be coming on line? Or is this just a McGuffin to hide the true intent.

House Democratic leaders said the bill helped accomplish one of Obama's campaign promises and would make the U.S. a leader in international efforts to address climate change when negotiations take place in Copenhagen later this year.

A yes, another progressive solution in search of a problem. I've used Matt Stone's and Trey Parker's line about hating Republicans but really f%^ing hating Democrats many times. But when it comes to Progressives I'm resorting to Jules Winnfield, "Well, I'm a mushroom-cloud-layin' mo&^%$*&^%er, mo&^%$*&^%er!

As for this international leader nonsense, well, do you really think anyone is going to follow the United States lead once they see how this cripples our economy and drives down our standard of living -- for no appreciable "climate change" benefit since China and India aren't playing? Funny how the Left in this country insists on everyone playing by our labor and workplace rules in the interest of fariness so long as it disadvantages American consumers, but no so much when it comes to environmental rules that disadvantage foreign manufacturers. So much for not exporting jobs, eh? And speaking of climate change, or what we euphemistically used to call "the weather," I think they know the PR game is just about up after they abandoned the term Anthropomorphic Global Warming (AGW) as the evidence continues to mount that whatever warming there may be isn't being caused by mankind or increases in carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, but I digress.

"We passed transformational legislation, which will take us into the future," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., after the 219-212 vote. "For some it was a very difficult vote because the entrenched agents of the status quo were out there full force, jamming the lines in their districts and here, and they withstood that," Pelosi said.

Entrenched agent of the status quo, i.e., a conservative. I think I'll wear that sobriquet proudly in opposition to just about everything Madame Speaker stands for and advocates.

Success will be tougher in the Senate. Majority Leader Harry Reid says he wants to take up the legislation by the fall.

Well, at least the Senators will have a chance to read the legislation before voting on it. If Majority Leader Reid is going to wait until the fall to bring this up I wonder if he really wants to see this fail. Clearly the House rushed this through to avoid the hue and cry that is going to be inevitable once the public finds out what is in this monstrosity. Hmm..., what kind of game is Dingy Harry playing?

In the Republicans' weekly radio and Internet address, House GOP leader John Boehner of Ohio said, "By imposing a tax on every American who drives a car or flips on a light switch, this plan will drive up the prices for food, gasoline and electricity." But Obama said the measure would cost the average American about the price of a postage stamp per day.

Remember this lie in years to come. Engrave it in stone to as a warning to future generations of this postmodern Ozymandias.

In California alone, Obama said, 3,000 people will be employed to build a new solar plant that will create 1,000 permanent jobs.

And let the rent seeking begin.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:38 AM in Politics | Comments (3)

The Will to Power

Do you think anyone in Iran's government in Tehran right now is saying, You dont ever want a crisis to go to waste; its an opportunity to do important things that you would otherwise avoid. Or is it possible the mullahs wouldn't sink as low morally and politically as Rahm Emanuel?

DOWNDATE: Quick! Somebody tell Rahm: Honduras Lurches Toward Crisis Over Election

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:31 AM in Politics | Comments (0)

June 26, 2009

SAT Question

Multiple choice entries in the comments below.

Smoot-Hawley is to Waxman-Markey as ...

Posted by Charles Austin at 09:15 PM in Politics | Comments (40)

Separated at Birth?

waxman.bmp PhantomFace.jpg

Posted by Charles Austin at 08:54 PM in | Comments (0)

Worst. Congress. Ever.

House passes climate-change prosperity destroying power grab bill

There, fixed that for you.

Every member of Congress that voted for this bill without reading it needs to lose their job -- on principle alone. I have no firm opinion on whether the tarring and feathering should happen before or after their sorry asses are thrown out of Congress.

The vote was extremely close 219-212, with eight Republicans voting yes and 44 Democrats voting no.

Republicans, my ass. Hope you are enjoying your last term in office.

Posted by Charles Austin at 07:52 PM in Politics | Comments (0)

Does This Say More About the Mental Health of Our Culture or Just the Mental Health of Big Media?

CBS News breathlessly asks:

Will Obama Make A Statement On Jackson?

Does your world revolve around waiting on a statement from President Obama (or seemingly anyone, for that matter) on the death of Michael Jackson (or seemingly anything, for that matter) before knowing what to think or feel? I guess some pathetic souls must know what the party line is before they can stick to it.

George Orwell was without a doubt the leading prophet of the 20th century. But I digress.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:01 PM in Media | Comments (0)

June 23, 2009

Now I Understand What They Mean by Green Cars

I recently saw this, which looked interesting:

Tesla delivers 500th Roadster to New Jersey man

Kind of cool for a fast little battery powered car. Then today I saw this:

The Energy Department is lending money to the Ford Motor Co. and two other automakers from a $25 billion fund to develop fuel-efficient vehicles, congressional officials say. [...snip...] Nissan has applied for an undisclosed amount of assistance, while Tesla has sought $450 million.

Really? $450M? And they have delivered 500 vehicles to date. At roughly $100,000 per unit, that's a grand total of $50M in revenue. Not income, but revenue. Makes me wonder if they are in the business of making green cars or seeking green from the federal government as their core business. Wouldn't you like to see the business plan that shows how this money is ever going to be paid back? I can imagine the looks I'd get down at the bank if I asked for $9 in loans for every $1 in revenue I'd taken in over the last three years.

Seriously, if it were that good of an idea and Tesla had a business plan that showed a reasonable expectation of a profit, don't you think they could find $450M in private capital, for a product that gets such positive press? But hey, why bother when being green can generate so much green? Even if it is all deficit spending that will probably never be paid back.

Posted by Charles Austin at 01:38 PM in Politics | Comments (1)

June 18, 2009

Freedom is Slavery

White House: Firing AmeriCorps IG an act of "political courage"

Kind of begs the question what they think an act of political cowardice might look like. Alberto Gonzalez could not be reached for comment.

Is there anything these little Masters of the Universe think they can't get away with?

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:41 PM in Politics | Comments (0)

Not That They Weren't Petty Enough Already

PETA becomes PETI:

Norfolk-based group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wants the flyswatter-in-chief to try taking a more humane attitude the next time he's bedeviled by a fly in the White House.

PETA is sending President Barack Obama a Katcha Bug Humane Bug Catcher, a device that allows users to trap a house fly and then release it outside.

"We support compassion even for the most curious, smallest and least sympathetic animals," PETA spokesman Bruce Friedrich said Wednesday. "We believe that people, where they can be compassionate, should be, for all animals."

Insects are people animals too!

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:39 PM in Politics | Comments (1)

June 16, 2009

Makes You Wonder Why He Wanted the Job, Doesn't It?

Sometime, I'd really like someone to ask President Obama if there is any part of the private, free market America he can bring himself to say something good about:

"If we do not fix our healthcare system, America may go the way of GM; paying more, getting less, and going broke," Obama said, likening the healthcare system to struggling carmaker General Motors, which has filed for bankruptcy protection.

Fortunately, our healthcare system isn't a monolithic system that will all go broke at once.

Yet.

Posted by Charles Austin at 06:26 PM in Politics | Comments (1)

This Is Not the Change You're Looking For

Obama Says U.S. Jobless Rate to Reach 10% This Year

What now? Double down on the debt bet and spend another $1,600,000,000,000 we don't have!

Senate health overhaul costs top $1.6T

And that's only to solve an estimatedone-third of the uninsured problem!

I can't wait for the next release of the Heritage Foundation chart with the Obama debt projections.

Posted by Charles Austin at 06:20 PM in Politics | Comments (0)

The Most Transparent Administration Transparency Ever

Obama blocks list of visitors to White House

Posted by Charles Austin at 01:14 PM in Politics | Comments (0)
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