What Media Bias?

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Posted on : 8/25/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : , ,

Courtesy of the Blogfather:

TWEET OF THE DAY: Republican makes a gaffe, @WashingtonPost reports it for a week. Obama makes one, they assume it’s PhotoShop.

Cha-Cha-Cha-Changes

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Posted on : 8/24/2012 07:00:00 PM | By : Dann | In : ,

One of the things I really lament is the decades long decline in civility in our political process.  Almost everyone expresses....and I'm hoping they really don't believe it....a deep loathing and contempt for their opponents that in another venue might be considered dehumanizing.

Sadly, the decline continues as the modicum of respect that politicians had for one another continues to crumble.

Presidential candidates have traditionally kept a low profile during their opponent's nominating celebration, but Democrats are throwing those rules out the window in an attempt to spoil Mitt Romney’s coronation as the GOP nominee.

...

"Traditionally, there was a kind of courtesy extended to the party having the convention — the [other] party would basically stay out of the public eye," said Ross Baker, political scientist at Rutgers University.

But that "gentlemen's agreement," Baker said, has been largely abandoned as "a consequence of the polarization of American politics." He characterized the old tradition as a "quaint code of etiquette" destined to become a "remnant of the 20th century."

The Blogfather has the best response from the story lede.

"Bucking protocol, President Obama and the Democrats are planning a full-scale assault on Republicans next week during their convention."

"Wait, “assault?” That sounds kinda violent."
Ah yes.  The language of hate from a party that rarely flinches at such things...unless they come from Republican.

I know that others may have a different perspective, but I am unsurprised to find the Democrats as the first to break with this tradition.  While the GOP is certainly guilty of playing dirty, the pioneers along the way have almost uniformly been Democrats.

Can't Read Or Won't Read

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Posted on : 8/24/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : , , ,

Those appear to the be the only options left for Paul Krugman. 

Newsweek recently published a piece by Niall Ferguson in which Mr. Ferguson makes the case that Mr. Obama has not earned consideration for re-election this November.  It is an interesting piece.

The NYTimes resident out-of-this-world economist cum opinionator, Paul Krugman took a few moments out of his day to suggest that Mr. Ferguson was factually challenged.  Mr. Krugman asserted that the ACA would provide a net reduction in the deficit.

Mr. Ferguson had the temerity to respond with facts and...gasp...math!  The bottom line for my valued readers is that the CBO report on the impact of the ACA indicates that the net effect of that law will be to increase the deficit by over $1 trillion over the next decade.

The only way that the ACA might have a less deleterious effect on the budget would be if it somehow managed to reduce the rate of inflation for Medicare expenditures from the 4% that is typical of the last 20 years to something much closer to 2%.  How it might do so at a time when the baby boomers are swelling the ranks of our nation's seasoned citizens is a bit of a mystery.

One option might include the use of magic wands.

Others include rationing of care or tax increases that are as fantastic as Mr. Krugman.  His fabulist inability to have an adult conversation using commonly known facts is one prime reason why I avoid Mr. Krugman's work.

Unconsionable! The USS Jane Fonda?

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Posted on : 8/23/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : ,

There are times when things go just a little too far!  Such as the naming of US warships.

Both the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars issued a joint statement today condemning the U.S. Navy over the launch of its newest warship, the USS Jane Fonda.

...

The ship’s name, which had been kept under wraps until right before the launch, was revealed yesterday at a star-studded event presided over by Ms. Fonda.

Ms. Fonda made a statement prior to the launch, saying, "I dedicate this ship to the brave men who fought and died in Vietnam, especially those in the 66th Viet Cong Regiment."

A New View

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Posted on : 8/22/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : , ,

Please take a moment to check out the awesome art here.

Numbers 2, 3, 4, 7, and 9 really caught my eye.  Number 8 made me think of the wanderings of Bilbo Baggins in "The Hobbit".  Number 11 must have been a huge challenge! 

Not A River, Or A Stream, Or A Creek

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Posted on : 8/21/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : ,

Just a brook.  Or more accurately Brooke.


I love that photo.

This little love sponge came to us via a mildly circuitous route.


Book Recommendation - The Vampire Earth

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Posted on : 8/20/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : ,

Keeping with my preference in reading material, I have recently finished "Winter Duty" which is a book from The Vampire Earth series by E.E. Knight.  "Winter Duty" presents a modest change of pace in The Vampire Earth series.

The series focuses on the life of protagonist David Valentine who lives in a post-apocalyptic world courtesy of the alien Kurians.  The Kurians consume the human aura for sustenance.  But they don't do so personally.  They send their Reapers to do the nasty work of "harvesting" humans.  The Reapers are fed by human blood.  They channel aura to their Kurian puppet masters.

The Kurians brought other species along as well for a variety of reasons.

David Valentine begins the series as a teen when is town is ripped apart by Reapers.  He ends up joining with the resistance army and demonstrates a strong aptitude for tactics....and killing.  Eventually, he is offered a chance to meet a Lifeweaver; cousins of the Kurians that decline to consume aura and are allied with the human resistance.

At that point, things get interesting.  I won't spoil it from there.

Sadly, there is not a great deal of variety to the books in this series.  David will throw himself in too deeply and his friends rescue him.  His friends end up held prisoner and David has to rescue them.  A new alien creature will be introduced and David will have to find a way to either defeat it, or co-opt it to the cause of the human resistance.  Sometimes it is a tale of "touch choices".  Sometimes it is all of the above.

"Winter Duty" has the feel of a pause in the middle of a larger story.  By comparison, consider the part of the story where the Hobbits visit Tom Bombadil and Goldberry.  While not integral to the overall storyline, the passage does help further define the Hobbits, their world, and the task ahead.

Throughout the series, there have been twists and turns.  "Winter Duty" strongly advances the intrigue of Kurian spies that have infiltrated the resistance army.  It is as if David Valentine now knows enough about the skills needed to find and kill the aliens, but still has not figured out how to discover the traitors in his midst.

These are beer and pretzel books; not necessarily the most mentally fulfilling reading, but they are certainly filling and enjoyable.  E.E. Knight spins a good yarn.

Start at the "Way of the Wolf" and move on from there.





Where We Were, Where We Are

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Posted on : 8/19/2012 07:00:00 AM | By : Dann | In : , ,

The blogfather routinely publishes this chart for obvious reasons.

Click for the original.



I've heard the obvious rejoinder..."well they didn't know how bad Bush had made things"....far too many times.  Bullshit.

If they didn't know how bad it was, then they were obviously not competent to take the job.

I can clearly recall the CBO saying that the recession would only last to the end of 2009 at the worst if we did NOT pass the stimulus bill.  The economy would work things out and we would recover, just as we always have.

Instead, we got an orgy of spending and debt, followed by an expensive national health care bill driving us further into debt, followed by further threats to regulate and tax the very people with the means to create much needed jobs which retarded investment.  There are good reasons to understand why our recovery has been so anemic.  Mr. Obama and the Democrats have done everything in their power to undermine it.

There were some productive elements of the stimulus bill.  The highway construction and repair elements have been very productive.  Obviously the unemployment extensions were worthwhile.  But the rest was just a waste of time and money.

This is why Mr. Obama needs to go.  He has no idea how to create wealth.  He only knows how to consume it.