June 29, 2009

Fetch me a Porcupine and a Banana STAT!

 Rand Simberg links to this very good piece on 5 fallacies of happiness.
Read the whole thing. It tangentially segues into the content below the fold...which is just diary stuff.


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I am not yet this far gone...

I am not yet this far gone
I am not yet this far gone
I am not yet this far gone
I wonder if they will be coming out with a Yuki Nagato in the fut....
I am not yet this far gone
I am not yet this far gone
I am not yet this far gone
Link via

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Stone Knives...Bearskins

An interesting example of living archeology.
A 13 year old tries to survive using the primitive technology of his anscestors..

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Weirdness In Honduras

The Honduran military has overthrown  President Zelaya and shipped him to Costa Rica....but...it does not appear to actually be what we normally think of as a coup.

Fausta explains...

It seems that the President of Honduras ordered the military to administer a plebiscite to amend the constitution in a manner directly in violation of said constitution. The amendment in question? He wanted his term limits removed.  As I understand it, the military refused to carry out illegal orders, the congress  more or less impeached the president with the blessing of the supreme court....and he was removed....but not imprisoned or killed.

The fact that Chavez is deeply upset is reason enough to pause and reflect on whether our governments condemnation of this action is not wrong headed (though it is perhaps, understandable). Military ousters of civilian governments, particularly in Latin America, are worrisome as they often lead to a very dark place. However, it does not appear that this is a military takeover as they reportedly acted on a congressional and supreme court request and the elected legislature has appointed a successor....from the same party as the ousted president.... Also, the military does not seem to be running the country.

Whenever a military overtly "assists" in the transfer of power in any capacity beyond security, it is good and proper to be skeptical, but this doesn't seem right now to be anything but the institutions of a republic working as designed.

And yes, I'm thawing out the crow....just in case.

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June 25, 2009

Michael Jackson Died for Our Sins

Michael Jackson has died.
Obviously you know this already as it is the only thing on TV and it seems is the only news on the planet worth covering.
Welcome to day one year one PMJ.
Tomorrow there was to be a crucial vote on the controversial cap and trade plan which many feared would wreck our economy. Obviously all issues have been worked out as there is nothing whatsoever to report.
Likewise the national health care debate....nothing to report so obviously all issues have been resolved with Jacko's death.
The terrifying US deficit, it seems, must have been a simple clerical error caused by a combination of a Dvorak keyboard and Excel.
Fox and MSNBC are showing Michael Jackson videos....so the unpleasantness in Iran has no doubt been resolved amicably.
There is no Piracy off either coast of Africa, in the straits of Malacca or the Caribbean.
There is no slavery in the world.
The huge plastic island in the north Pacific gyre has obviously disappeared.
North Korea has agreed to all of the very strongly worded requests by the UN....which one would think might be news...but then one would obviously be wrong, wouldn't one?
No doubt their recent nuclear test was a practical joke involving several tons of Mentos, Diet Coke and some smoke detectors.
The Taliban are quiet and AlQuaeda has called off their jihad in remembrance of the King of Pop.
All is well thanks to Michael Jackson making the ultimate sacrifice on our behalf.

Or perhaps the gatekeepers of our news are morons.

Bread, circuses and all that jazz.

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June 24, 2009


While the US News is focused like voyeuristic jackals on that idiot Sanford and like devout cultists on the Presidents speech, all hell has broken loose in Iran.

There are reports of government thugs going after the protesters with axes.

Updates here, here and here

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June 20, 2009

Found in the middle of the highway...

Ravenous little monster ate half a can of Vienna sausages.

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June 16, 2009

Tweaking Teh Twitters

The Iranian government is searching for dissident twitterers. If you have an account, change your location and timezone to Tehran.

via Ace of Spades

Every little bit helps I suppose.

Then there is this via The Anchoress...

UPDATE: Steven Den Beste has thoughts on how digital cameras and things like Twitter allow this and other similar pictures to be seen...

Fifteen years ago it wouldn't have been possible. Fifteen years ago the people risking their lives with those cameras would have been using film. Fifteen years ago it would have taken days if not weeks for them to smuggle film out of such an area, get it developed, and get the pictures published (on paper). That's because fifteen years ago pictures were a physical medium. That's all changed. Now pictures are bits.

Now the cameras are digital, the smuggling is by satellite phone or internet, and publishing is on the web. In some cases the picture can be seen by thousands around the world within an hour of when it is taken.


...read the whole thing.
 UPDATE 2: Again via The Anchoress

:::GO BACK DELETE ALL PAST TWEETS that may have Iran usernames . Arrests have been made. Please RT (Re-twee) ENSURE ALL SEE THIS:::
:::GOOGLE EARTH DO NOT UPDATE THE MAPS – it will allow govt to track protesters that are hiding on sidestreets and roofs:::
:::Video: Perhaps the most intense I’ve seen to date. Wish I had more details behind it. http://ow.ly/eupm:::
:::thank you for braving the consequences to tell the world about what is happening:::

The odds against these people are at least as long as those against the protesters in Tinanmen, and there is, of course little that those of us in the 82nd chairborne can do. But every little bit helps.

UPDATE 3: Michael Totten writes...
A friend who analyzes Iran for a living recommends a new Web site called Where is My Vote? as an indispensable source of information coming out of Iran. Everyone involved with it is Iranian. Some of the contributors are inside. According to my source, who knows his chops, it’s accurate and up-to-date

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Pizza by The Slice....Alas No

So I had to run out to my mobile home today to pay my lot-rent and cut the grass.The latter was thwarted by rain but I stopped for lunch at a new Greek Cafe on Jefferson Avenue next to the Asian Grocery near the What A Burger.

 I ordered a slice of pizza only to be told that the store did not sell pizza by the slice...one had to buy the whole pizza! The proprietor, for whom English was obviously not his first language, seemed perplexed that people kept coming in asking for slices.

I pointed out the sign that said "Pizza by the slice" and explained that that did not mean the whole pizza was pre-sliced.

So I ordered a gyro...
...which was one of the best I've ever had. The slices of gyro meat were waaay thicker than usual, the olives were fresh and the thing was spiced differently than I was accustomed to..but better.

My weight loss scheme precluded me from partaking of the baklava

The place the Greek Cafe and Food Mart is fantastic find. It's also a tobacco shop, has a hookah booth and sells hookahs. I don't smoke, but I applaud anyone with the balls to open a hookah shop in Newport News.

Next time I'm over there I'll try some of their kebabs...or I'll take home some of their pizza...I hear its pre-sliced.

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More Status

...My grandmother had a series of terrible headaches last night. Before I went to bed, I took her blood pressure...
192 over 123


188 over 124

Well bed was obviously not happening....and I ended up not going to work...
Of course the doctor found her blood pressure normal...so we had them look at our blood pressure monitor...it worked fine.....

His response"

"Well, she may well be having fluctuations...my advise is to not use the home blood pressure monitor."

Our response:
"But you said it was calibrated properly and we were using it right.

His response:
"Yes, but if her blood pressure really is spiking it will get you all upset...."

My response: New doctor. 

Srsly guys....WTF?

Anyway there is a new set of pills in the house for my Grandmother now.

In other news my mothers surgery has been delayed again. Both of the surgeons want to do another biopsy, this one very invasive (full blown surgery) to determine the extent of the actual surgery....which is delayed yet again.

I haven't slept in almost 2 days....but as I type this...I'm unable to sleep.

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June 13, 2009

Tiananmen in Terhan?

...or the Berlin wall in '89?

Michael Totten is covering the unrest with constant updates as is Dan Riehl whose sources report that cell phones are off in the Capital and all tweets from the Islamic Republic have fallen silent.

UPDATE: At least partially Confirmed by AFP (Update: but see below)

The main mobile telephone network in Iran was cut in the capital Tehran Saturday evening while popular Internet websites Facebook and YouTube also appeared to be blocked, correspondents said.

Terhan Bureau is posting continuous updates.

More here, here, here, and here.

UPDATE: Twitter is up Iran events Tweet aggregator is here.

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Bulletresistant Boddices Bear Belongings and Buttress Babes Bosoms against Belligerents!

Dita Von Teese call your office!

Tactical Corsets!

Every girl should have a tactical corset!

For too long, women have had to compromise practicality for beauty. Men got pants with cargo pockets and built-in knee pads, women got clothes whose only built-in feature was cuteness. But why should men get all the high-speed low-drag tactical toys?

Tactical gear is no longer an all boys club. Tactical Corsets bring female operators MILSPEC features like MOLLE modular pouch attachment webbing and self-adjustable quick-release buckles in a load-bearing carrier designed to support the female form. And we're just getting started.


Yes indeed ladies! Shake off the tyranny of the purse! The one true path to freedom and independence is through tight-lacing!


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"Oh..that was ME!?"

John Moffat fought a hard war. He served on 4 carriers in the Second World War, saw action in the North Atlantic, Mediterranean and Pacific and survived the sinking of the HMS Ark Royal and the terrible fire aboard HMS Formidable. However, his most famous action took place early in the war.The target was the Nazi battleship Bismark, which was had sent the Home fleet flagship to the bottom of the Denmark Straits and was at extreme range. Churchill himself  ordered ordered the carrier Ark Royal to launch an attack....weather be damned....At the time HMS Ark Royal was  caught in hurricane force winds and taking green water over her flight deck.

"The ship was pitching 60ft, water was running over the decks and the wind was blowing at 70 or 80mph... And nobody mentions the deck hands who had to bring the planes up from the hangars  -  they did something special. After they brought them up they had to open
the wings which took ten men for each wing. And then they had to wind a handle to get the starters working."

 Only 3 pilots were able to get their machines into the air under those hellish conditions and those machines were Fairy Swordfish....utterly obsolete biplane Torpedo bombers.
3 Stringbags against a battleship.
3 torpedoed dropped in the face of a hellstorm of flack.
One of those torpedoes struck.
It jammed the Bismark's rudder.
That hit allowed the remnants of the home fleet to get within range.  
KMS Bismark died as a result.

Nearly 60 years later, John Moffat was informed by the Royal Navy that it had been his torpedo that landed what turned out to be a fatal blow. His response?
It gave me a sort of satisfaction.'


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June 09, 2009

The Wreck of HMS Victoria

When commissioned in 1890, HMS Victoria was one of the most powerful ships in the world. A test bed for several new technologies she nevertheless represented in some ways a technological and tactical dead end being intended to fight end on with an eye towards ramming. To that end her main armament was concentrated forward and consisted of two huge experimental 16.25 inch guns in a massive armored Coles turret.  There was also a very heavy secondary armament of 6 inch and smaller weapons as well as some torpedo tubes. Finally there was a massive armored ram below the waterline. All that armor and armament forward on a 10,000 ton ship meant that freeboard was low at the bow and the ship was considered best suited to the Mediterranean squadron. She was very well equipped as a flagship however and as such bore Admiral George Tryon's flag on 22 June 1893 when, off the coast of Syria, the Mediterranean fleet was engaged in maneuvers.

  A miscommunication via signal flags resulted in the battleship HMS Camperdown ending up on a collision course with Victoria. The Helmsmen of both vessels waited to get permission to change course, by which time it was too late to avoid a collision and Camperdowns fearsome ram pierced Victorias bow. Damage control efforts were hampered in part by Watertight hatches that were unable to be fully dogged due to paint and rust as well as bulkheads being pierced for ventilation and wiring. HMS Victoria sank in 13 minutes with the loss of 358 men including Admiral Tryon.

The Wreck  has now been found 500 feet beneath the Mediterranean.

Its in surprisingly good shape.

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Shell Game

    The administration is looking to pay 200 million dollars to Palau to have them resettle 17 Chinese Muslim terrorists who have been ordered to be released from Guantanamo Bay. However no one wants them except the Chinese who want to execute them (as they are allegedly members of an Islamic secessionist movement) and the Obama administration, not entirely without merit, balked at that. The solution seems to be to pawn them off on Palau and give the Palau government 200 million dollars to have 17 Islamic (former?) terrorists living in their midst.

    On a purely petty level this is amusing...the administrations solution to keeping them locked up on a tropical island is to move them to a tropical one they can move around on...but most likely never leave. On the other hand this sad tale shows the sort of no-win conundrums with no easy solutions that the President must deal with every day...just as his predecessor did for 8 years. A POTUS has to deal with the options presented him or her by the real world, and those options are usually devoid of any good choices. A President must chose the path that is least bad, both ethically and strategically and that is often a thankless task indeed.

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June 08, 2009

Common Ground

    There are all sorts of issues that reasonable people can disagree on. However, I think that most people from all political persuasions ought to be able to get together, sing kumbayah and agree on at least one thing.

     Ed Whelan of National Review is a dick.

    A lot of people blog with pseudonyms because they fear for their jobs or in some places their safety. Outing them because they "nipped at your heels" is damned low.
     More here,here, and here. Rick Moran comments here and makes an important distinction....

If Publius had been a commenter at some blog attacking Whelan personally, or spreading lies about him, or simply calling him names, I would not be very sympathetic. But the blogger - one of the few left of center bloggers I find reasonable and thoughtful - gave what most bloggers would consider a mild rebuke to Whelan’s analysis and was outed for his trouble.

There's a post by the victim here who when confronted by Whelan via E-mail explained his situation and reasons for his pseudonym....to no avail.

     I am short of time, and others more eloquent than I have expounded upon this...but this  quote that Instapundit puts up in his excellent link fest on this matter needs addressing.

Why should we feel sorry for him? If I was ever outed, I doubt that any liberals would raise their voices in my defense, except in a perfunctory “say it now so they can’t call me a hypocrite later” kind of way. And by then it would be too late. I would be outed and I would lose my job.

The same liberals who worked to get Prop 8 donors fired are now sobbing, sobbing, heartbroken, because this formerly-pseudonymous cyberbully is now on equal footing with the target of his bizarre obsession.

The same liberals who out closeted gays who have sex in private insist that they have a right to publicly harangue people with complete anonymity.


What's that Daryl?
Moonbat Lefties!?
Being Hypocritical thugs!?...in MY blogosphere!?
Golly willakers! Who'd have THUNK it?

      Because the other side does it does not make it right. On the contrary, this is one of the most troubling trends of recent years reaching its ultimate expression in the card check elimination of the secret ballot. This is the sort of thing that principled conservatives tend to oppose...regardless of who it happens to.This is a bad thing because it was a bad thing to do. To put the shoe on the other foot. A conservative academic without tenure could lose his job over something like this. Publius was a Leftie but if he is at a university like Bob Jones  then he could conceivably be in much the same pickle that a Righty would be in at the vast majority of universities in this nation. 

    It gets worse, the idea that someone who claims to be a conservative feels that it is inappropriate for someone to post anonymous political commentary under the pseudonym Publius...

    Hell, I'll just let that sink in there for a minute...

    This was a common trick. It is also creepy, Orwellian and smacks of stalking. It deserves full condemnation. Mr. Whelan is not going to change any of his readers view of Publius one whit, but he has given all of us a very clear view of himself.

UPDATE: as Steven Den Beste points out in the comments, Whelan has apologized. The last two sentences of his post do get to the heart of the matter
...As I stated in that e-mail, I realize that, unfortunately, it is impossible for me to undo my ill-considered disclosure of his identity.  For that reason, I recognize that Publius may understandably regard my apology as inadequate.


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June 06, 2009

Site Down Time

We have been informed by Pixy Misa, our stalwart and brilliant web wizard that the servers will be migrating to greener pastures at 06:00GMT/01:00 AM EST tomorrow (June 7). Barring any stampedes or alkali flats the process should only take an hour.

Then Mee.nu will be that much more spiffy. If you want to be part of the spiffy then sign up.

Picture unrelated...

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June 6...

...is not about Tetris.

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June 02, 2009

Status Report

Mom met with both surgeons yesterday. The prognosis is dismaying. She requires a total mastectomy and the surgery will take over 8 hours. There is a nontrivial chance that she won't wake up.  The surgery date is not set YET as she wants to talk to the Oncologist again...but it will be in the next two weeks. After the surgery its going to be rough indeed. As mentioned previously, I've moved into the sewing room at my folks and there is going to be a lot of help required around their house for the next few months. I talked with the manager at UPS today and informed him of the situation. I must say they are being very supportive.
Any prayers are appreciated.

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A new airborne strain of Rabies is spreading rapidly through Arizona.
HT Cdr. Salamander.

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