Wrinkles, Reservations, Research, & Response

Thought #1

Is anyone surprised that documents related to the California Attorney General’s investigation of ACORN ended up in the trash?

The documents were thrown out in advance of state investigators arriving at the local ACORN office to conduct an investigation resulting from national media attention. ACORN employee Juan Carlos Vera was videotaped giving advice to two individuals posing as a pimp and a prostitute regarding underage prostitution and human smuggling. Without admitting any wrongdoing ACORN terminated Mr. Vera, or so they said.

To tell you the truth, I am more surprised that the Justice Department has decided that ACORN should be paid even though Congress banned the government from providing money to them.

The Justice Department has concluded that the Obama administration can lawfully pay the community group Acorn for services provided under contracts signed before Congress banned the government from providing money to the group.

The department’s conclusion, laid out in a recently disclosed five-page memorandum from David Barron, the acting assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel, adds a new wrinkle to a sharp political debate over the antipoverty group’s activities and recent efforts to distance the government from it.

That’s one hell of a wrinkle if you ask me.

Thought #2

Do you think the Obama Administration can effectively prevent an act of terrorism here in the United States? They can’t even prevent uninvited guests from shaking the President’s hand, AT THE WHITE HOUSE, what makes you think you’re safe in your home?

This time, the picture is the story.

After the Secret Service insisted that President Barack Obama was never endangered by a security breach that allowed a couple to crash his first state dinner, the White House has released a photo showing that not only did the pair get close to Obama, they actually shook hands and talked to him.

As the White House was disclosing that the Virginia couple, Michaele and Tareq Salahi, met Obama in the receiving line, a “deeply concerned and embarrassed” Secret Service on Friday acknowledged that its officers never checked whether the two were on the guest list before letting them onto the White House grounds.

Thought #3

ClimateGate is heating up. Pardon the pun.

Michael Mann, co-author of the Copenhagen Diagnosis and lead author of the UN IPCC Third Assessment Report, blamed skeptics for taking the personal emails out of context.

“What they’ve done is search through stolen personal emails—confidential between colleagues who often speak in a language they understand and is often foreign to the outside world. Suddenly, all these are subject to cherry picking,” he said.

This is a “smear campaign to distract the public,” said Mann. “Those opposed to climate action, simply don’t have the science on their side,” he added.

I am a programmer. I converse with many programmers. It’s true we sometimes speak our own language that many might not understand, but please understand a couple things. When we use the words “our data are surely wrong” or “our observing system is inadequate”, the words wrong and inadequate mean exactly what you think they mean.

The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.

The fact that the Climate Research Unit emails have been released, whether they discredit the entire global warming / climate change argument or not, paints the entire concept of global warming as nothing but a myth perpetuated by those who sought only to take advantage of the people of the world.

Are ice caps melting? It seems so, yes. Have we noticed changes in our climate? Yes, again. Does man have any effect on the climate? So far, this newly released information says no. We’re not talking one or two emails, either. We’re talking about more than 1,000 emails, none of which support the theory of man-made global warming.

Thought #4

President Obama has to be the most obvious “anti-Israel” President our nation has ever seen.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he could “guarantee” that arch-terrorist Marwan Barghouti would not be released from prison in any deal to exchange terrorists for kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit. “We have no intention to free the head of the murderers, a person who has been sentenced to four life terms in prison. There are red lines, and this is one of them,” Lieberman said.

In response to U.S. demands that Israel free an additional 1,000-some terrorists as a “gesture” to Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, Lieberman said that previous releases of Fatah terrorists “have not proven themselves. The Olmert administration did this several times and it did not work, and we do not plan to allow it to happen,” Lieberman said.

The Obama administration demanded that Israel release Palestinian prisoners. How about we demand that Palestinians stop entering Israeli towns and blowing themselves up? How about we demand that Palestinians release Israelis they are holding? How about we demand that Palestinians show some initiative that they want peace (which we all know they don’t)?

I’ve got a better idea. Why don’t we demand that President Obama stop threatening the state of Israel by showing such obvious support to terrorists? That is not a rhetorical question.

Recalls, Reactions, Reports, & Representatives

I spent another day getting as much work done as possible and when 6pm came, I started prepping everything for the big dinner tomorrow night. We’re having a small family gathering, almost as small as we could get, as my mom will be our only guest tomorrow. My sister can’t make it down from Kentucky, and well, I’m not going to discuss anything else. Let me just say that it’s very clear there won’t be anyone else ringing our doorbell.

This evening, I am getting the bread ready for the stuffing, chopping onions and celery, and making sure I have all the spices I need for the traditional family stuffing recipe. The wife and kids are cleaning washing our special dishes, but hopefully we’ll all be in bed early so getting up early won’t hurt so bad in the morning.

Thought #1

A bit of local politics here on the bog.

The Citizens for the Future of Carroll County are working to recall Carroll County Commission Chairman Bill Chappell. From their website:

While the grounds for recalling a duly elected official may include one of the following reasons, our committee checked all 5 reasons on their “Application For Recall” regarding Chairman Bill Chappell:

1. Has committed an act or acts of malfeasance while in office;
2. Has violated his or her oath of office;
3. Has committed an act of misconduct in office;
4. Is guilty of a failure to perform duties prescribed by law; or
5. Has willfully misused, converted, or misappropriated, without authority, public property or public funds entrusted to or associated with the elective office to which the official has been elected or appointed.

Our committee included the following “facts upon which this recall is based” in their application:

“As Carroll County Commission Chairman has committed the following acts of misconduct: (a) violated O.C.G.A. 21-2-414(f) by wrongfully being in an area where early voting was occurring; (b) entered into contracts exceeding his authority under County Ordinance 8(a)(22); (c) misappropriated county funds by unauthorized personal monthly car allowances and having the County pay registration fees for Sue Horn, his longtime girlfriend but listed on the registration form as his spouse; (d) violated the Georgia Open Meeting Statute by discussing an IT services contract in closed meeting when no threat of litigation existed; (e) failed to perform duties prescribed by law by failing to present contracts and other matters to the Board of Commissioners; (f) misused SPLOST funds for settlements and inappropriate purchases; (g) abused his authority by usurping the Board of Commissioners’ authority and by using county funds and resources for the benefit of selected supporters, including Wayne Garner; and (h) violated his oath of office by violating the Times-Georgian’s First Amendment rights, as well as his violations of state law and county ordinances as reflected herein.”

When I first heard that he was seen at the early voting location greeting voters, I suspected he was no good. It doesn’t matter why you are the building, on county business or not, you don’t greet voters inside the building, as they arrive to cast their vote.

Having been brought up to speed on all the other issues, I can’t help but wonder why he’s still in office. If you live in Carroll County make sure you click the links on their page to reserve your place on the petition or even volunteer to help out a bit.

Thought #2

It seems there is a problem with some of the Swine Mexican flu vaccine in Canada.

An unusual number of severe allergic reactions to swine flu vaccinations have been recorded in Canada, where a batch of the vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been recalled, the WHO said on Tuesday.

The Centers for Disease Control here in the United States has re-assured people that there is no problem with the supply in the United States. Uh, hello? Are countries actually preparing their own supplies or is it all made at the same place? I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with the U.S. supply, but how can they be so sure?

Thought #3

Wow. First emails, now source code. Climate change (aka global warming) data has been falsified from the beginning.

yrloc=[1400,findgen(19)*5.+1904]

valadj=[0.,0.,0.,0.,0.,-0.1,-0.25,-0.3,0.,-0.1,0.3,0.8,1.2,1.7,2.5,2.6,2.6,2.6,2.6,2.6]*0.75 ; fudge factor

There is no doubt this was an inside job. The reports first said it was hackers, but I think it was someone on the inside who thought enough is enough and started spreading the word.

I only have two questions now. Why is President Obama still going to Copenhagen? And what in the hell is Al Gore going to invent now to keep Tipper in the lifestyle that she is accustomed?

Thought #4

There are so many new congressional districts, we’re going to need at least another hundred congressmen to represent them.

 

Protocol, Perception, Procrastinating, & Pretenders

Thought #1

Instead of coming up with some nonsensical excuse for explaining why the leader of the free world bowed in submission to the Emperor of Japan, the Obama Administration has decided that doing so was an act of protocol.

A senior administration official said President Barack Obama was simply observing protocol when he bowed to Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko upon arriving at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Saturday.

Who’s the moron that added “The President shall bow to all foreign leaders in a symbolic gesture of submission and capitulation” to the administration protocol books? It seems to me that Barack Obama is the only world leader that symbolizes submission and capitulation while meeting other world leaders.

Thought #2

According to the CDC, swine Mexican flu has infected 22 million Americans and killed roughly 4,000 of them.

Swine flu has sickened about 22 million Americans since April and killed nearly 4,000, including 540 children, according to startling federal estimates released Thursday.

That’s a death rate of 0.00018182 or 0.01812 percent. In simpler terms, 1.812 people out of every 10,000 infected will die from swine Mexican flu.

Now there’s word of a new “pneumonic plague” sweeping across Europe that’s more deadly than H1N1.

A deadly plague could sweep across Europe, doctors fear, after an outbreak of a virus in Ukraine plunged the country and its neighbours into a state of panic.

A cocktail of three flu viruses are reported to have mutated into a single pneumonic plague, which it is believed may be far more dangerous than swine flu. The death toll has reached 189 and more than 1 million people have been infected, most of them in the nine regions of Western Ukraine.

Whoa. 189 people are dead, out of one million. That puts the death rate for this “deadly plague” at 0.000189 or 0.0189 percent. Yes, it’s true. This pneumonic plague kills 1.89 people out of every 10,000 infected.

The new scary plague will kill 0.078 more people per 10,000 infected than Swine Mexican Flu. For you mathematically challenged people out there that’s equal to 7.8 people per million. We’re talking a death rate less than one-fiftieth of one percent, and just so we all keep one foot on the ground, let’s remember a few things.

  • the survival rate for all cancers diagnosed from 1996-2004 (after five years) is just 66%. That puts the death rate at 34%.
  • in 2005, coronary heart disease death rates per 100,000 people were 187.7 for white males and 213.9 for black males; and 110.0 for white females and 140.9 for black females, which puts the lowest death rate for coronary heart disease at 0.11 percent or 11 deaths per 10,000 people.

So the next time someone starts talking about these “super bugs” and “deadly plagues” take a moment to step back and look at the whole story. It might not be as bleak as they want you to think it is.

Thought #3

Barack Obama seems to have forgotten, yet again, words that have come from his own mouth.

In November of 2008, while running for President, Barack Obama said the following while addressing a group of bipartisan governors and talking about climate change and reducing emissions.

Delay is no longer an option. Denial is no longer an acceptable response.

Candidate Barack Obama made it clear that delay was no longer an option, but today, one year and one election later, President Barack Obama and other world leaders made it clear that delay is the only option.

U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders on Sunday supported delaying a legally binding climate pact until 2010 or even later, but European negotiators said the move did not imply weaker action.

Some argued that legal technicalities might otherwise distract the talks in Copenhagen and it was better to focus on the core issue of cutting climate-warming emissions.

Great job, Mr. President. You’ve proven once again that we cannot rely on a single word that comes out of your mouth.

Thought #4

What happens when a presidential administration and recipients of stimulus funds pretend to create jobs?

More than ten percent of the jobs the Obama administration has claimed were “created or saved” by the $787 billion stimulus package are doubtful or imaginary, according to reports compiled from eleven major newspapers and the Associated Press.

I haven’t really paid attention to many AP “investigations” since Barack Obama was elected because their reporting has been so biased it just didn’t warrant wasting my time to read what they had to say. What’s different this time?

It seems that eleven major newspapers actually did some groundwork (formerly known as “journalism”) and started asking questions.

For example, in South Carolina,

“The Greenville Housing Authority “saved or created” 118 jobs by use of federal stimulus money, according to the Obama administration. Not bad for an agency that has 35 employees.”

And in Harry Reid’s neck of the woods,

At least 4,000 of the supposedly created jobs in Nevada government — and possibly hundreds more — have been called into question in the light of reports that local governments were “told to take the amount of stimulus money they received and divide it by $92,000, the theoretical average wage and benefits of a job.” The Nevada Department of Education divided by $66,681 and the state’s higher education system used a figure of $45,000 when each estimated 2,000 jobs “saved.”

Thank goodness someone is finally questioning what this administration is claiming to have accomplished. When all is said and done, I’m pretty sure the following will be a complete (and unedited) list of the Obama administration’s accomplishments: