Thursday, August 31, 2017

Democratic Party Civil War Coming?

8/31/17 New Republic (which is sort of the more responsible wing of the hard left):
Open Markets, a division at the public policy think tank the New America Foundation, had been an intellectual force in progressive circles in recent years, leading to a heightened awareness of the damaging effects that monopolization is having on both consumers and businesses. Its work focused on everything from hyper-consolidation in the airline industry to a growing concentration of book publishers, but where it really stirred things up was by targeting America’s giant tech companies, particularly Amazon, Facebook, and Alphabet (the umbrella company for Google). Now, Google has apparently struck back, revealing a growing divide between progressives and an industry that has long claimed a home in the Democratic Party.

On Wednesday, The New York Times’s Ken Vogel reported that New America had parted ways with Open Markets following complaints from Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Alphabet, a major New America donor. (Schmidt has also made personal donations to New America, and was its chairman until 2016.) In an email reviewed by the Times, Anne-Marie Slaughter, who leads New America, informed Barry Lynn, the head of Open Markets, that “the time has come for Open Markets and New America to part ways.” Slaughter told Lynn that the decision was “in no way based on the content of your work,” but that Lynn was “imperiling the institution as a whole.” In a statement released after the Times published its story, Slaughter said Lynn has been let go for insubordination—for failing “to adhere to New America’s standards of openness and institutional collegiality.”
What did they do?
But it appears the nail in the coffin was when Open Markets praised the $2.7 billion antitrust fine the European Union levied against Alphabet in June. The statement was briefly taken down from New America’s website, and “word of Mr. Schmidt’s displeasure rippled through New America,” according to the Times. The Times reports that Slaughter also objected to a 2016 Open Markets conference on consolidation in the tech sector, telling Lynn that it could hurt New America’s relationship with Google: “We are in the process of trying to expand our relationship with Google on some absolutely key points ... just THINK about how you are imperiling funding for others.”
Interesting.  Even libertarians regard monopoly as a bad thing (too much like government), but usually point to the part that governments play in encouraging or creating monopolies--and Alphabet-Google is among the many examples.

Several years ago, World Vision, an evangelical worldwide poverty relief organization responded to pressure from these SJWs on their board by giving benefits to their gay employees.  World Vision claimed that they had spent several years "prayerfully" considering this change.  The overwhelming response from donors like my wife and me caused a dramatic about face--and Google's SJW left the board, presumably taking vast amounts of donations with her.

A Logical, If Dangerous, Extrapolation

I often see marijuana legalization advocates argue that it is less harmful than alcohol, and not terribly dangerous by itself.  The evidence that it causes schizophrenia, at least for some people is persuasive enough that I no longer support legalization.  Libertarians argue that this is equally valid for all illegal drugs: "It's my body."  This is also a strong argument.  But how many of the "marijuana isn't all that bad for you" crowd are going to go for this?  8/30/17 The Hill:
California would become the first state in the nation to legalize psychedelic mushrooms if a long-shot ballot initiative passes muster with voters next year.
The measure is backed by a legalization activist who says he kicked his heroin habit with the help of a mushroom trip in Death Valley. It would exempt Californians over the age of 21 from a state law that criminalizes mushrooms containing psilocybin, the compound that gives some mushrooms psychedelic properties.
“There is a cultural fascination with mushrooms that goes really deep,” said Kevin Saunders, the activist behind the initiative. “The soccer moms are all pretty much, for lack of a better term, high now, and some of them are taking mushrooms.”...
Saunders, who is running for mayor of the small coastal community of Marina, said he believes psilocybin-laced mushrooms could have been transported to earth by an asteroid.
“What I think we’re dealing with possibly is alien contact,” Saunders said in an interview. “It may be some sort of communication from an advanced society, to reprogram us, to reprogram our souls or mind. I think this could be the next big awakening.”
Some would say, "California politics suggest that they are already legal; the aliens won."

This description of the effects sounds like a bad idea:
Psilocybin can produce euphoria, hallucinations and a distorted sense of time for the user. It is very common for those under the influence of magic mushrooms to act erratically and irrationally. Behavior may include odd reactions to normal events, distinct outbursts and panic attacks.
The effects of magic mushrooms cannot always be foreseen until the drug has already been taken. Unfortunately, as with most hallucinogenic drugs, the effects of magic mushrooms are unreliable and unpredictable. Some users will experience a spiritual or otherwise enlightening high while others may experience a “bad” trip that could cause them to suffer from extreme paranoia, anxiety, depression or schizophrenic like outbursts and chaos.

Imagine the Media Attention With Races Reversed

It would all be Trump's fault.  8/30/17 Kansas City Star:
The 22-year-old man suspected of shooting five middle-aged white men since last year — including four on south Kansas City walking trails — threatened in 2014 to shoot up a school and “kill all white people,” according to court records.
Fredrick Demond Scott, who was charged Tuesday in two killings and named as a suspect in three more, made those statements in January 2014 at Center Alternative School, as documented in a municipal citation for harassment.
The local paper is the only coverage on  news.google.com.  According to his mother he is schizophrenic.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

I Hope He Is in Prison Before Gets a Chance to Vote to Impeach Trump

8/30/17 CNN:

(CNN)Email correspondence, flight manifests, hotel bills, credit card statements and Federal Election Commission filings will all be deployed as evidence of an alleged bribery scheme carried out for seven years by New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez and an associate, according to a new brief filed by prosecutors in federal court Wednesday.
The outline of the Justice Department's case came one week before the trial against Menendez and his co-defendant, Florida-based ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen, begins on September 6 in federal court in Newark, New Jersey. Menendez and Melgen have been charged with 18 counts of fraud and bribery crimes. Both have entered a plea of not guilty.
Menendez and Melgen are accused of having a "quid pro quo" relationship going as far back as 2006. Prosecutors say that in exchange for luxurious vacations and large donations to his campaign coffers, Menendez used his power to advocate for various personal and business interests of Melgen's within the government.
And right below in news.google.com:  8/30/17 NJ.com:
Menendez: ending program for immigrant children would be 'heartless'
Maybe a bit less money into Melgen's pocket could help?

This Should Qualify as a Major News Story

8/24/17 Fox News concerning the salacious dossier about Trump:
Meanwhile, Simpson, a former Wall Street Journal reporter who, as founder of Fusion, hired Steele to create the dossier, was behind closed doors in Washington, D.C. On Wednesday, he spent 10 hours with Congressional investigators assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee chaired by Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who has been perturbed with the level of cooperation his Senate Judiciary Committee has received from Simpson and his attorney.

"Fusion's initial production of documents consisted of solely of headlines from publicly available news reports and more than 7,500 pages of blank paper,” Grassley spokesman Taylor Foy said. “Fusion eventually provided a copy of the same unverified dossier that's been publicly available since January, and a privilege log that raises more questions than it answers."
If your high school years, like mine, were spent  reading IBM manuals, the phrase, "This page intentionally left blank."  brings back memories.

Chronic Vomiting Syndrome

If the title doesn't scare you this 8/30/17 Atlantic article should:
Cyclic vomiting syndrome is, I think, the best and worst clinical term for a condition that I’ve ever heard. Most clinical terms somewhat obscure the grossness of the thing described (think “incontinence” for diarrhea), but not cyclic vomiting syndrome (or CVS). It is pretty clear, pretty immediately, that what you are in for here is nonstop puking, in episodes lasting anywhere from a few hours to several days at a time. The exact cause is unknown, though there are a number of factors thought to contribute: emotional stress (particularly in children), hot weather, overeating, fatigue, migraines. A diagnosis of CVS is most common among young children, though the number of diagnoses among adults is increasing—and one of the reasons for that increase may be pot. A study published in 2012 found that marijuana use may be as high as 40 to 50 percent among male CVS patients. (While studies show that the typical patient for CVS linked to marijuana use is a middle-aged white man, women and minorities are also susceptible.) So, because I fear throwing up about as much as I fear drugs, I decided to speak to a medical professional to find out how likely it is that the average casual pot smoker will develop CVS.
Remember: marijuana is health food! The comments over there from pot worshippers are as you might expect: There is no hazard from inhaling psychoactive burning vegetables! And here's a paper on it.
Abstract
Coinciding with the increasing rates of cannabis abuse has been the recognition of a new clinical condition known as Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome. Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome is characterized by chronic cannabis use, cyclic episodes of nausea and vomiting, and frequent hot bathing. Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome occurs by an unknown mechanism. Despite the well-established anti-emetic properties of marijuana, there is increasing evidence of its paradoxical effects on the gastrointestinal tract and CNS. Tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol, and cannabigerol are three cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant with opposing effects on the emesis response. The clinical course of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome may be divided into three phases: prodromal, hyperemetic, and recovery phase. The hyperemetic phase usually ceases within 48 hours, and treatment involves supportive therapy with fluid resuscitation and anti-emetic medications. Patients often demonstrate the learned behavior of frequent hot bathing, which produces temporary cessation of nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The broad differential diagnosis of nausea and vomiting often leads to delay in the diagnosis of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome. Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome shares several similarities with CHS and the two conditions are often confused. Knowledge of the epidemiology, pathophysiology, and natural course of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome is limited and requires further investigation.

Editing the Past

8/11/17 National Review:
This week the Yale Alumni Magazine reported that a stone carving of an Indian and a Puritan over an entrance to Sterling Memorial Library had been bowdlerized, with the weapon the latter was holding covered up. A head librarian, Susan Gibbons, said that she and the university’s Committee on Art in Public Spaces found that the carving’s “presence at a major entrance to Sterling was not appropriate.” Yale ordered the musket of the Puritan to be covered up with a layer of stone that Gibbons said “can be removed in the future without damaging the original carving,” the magazine reported.
Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/450407/yale-erases-history-campus-statue-covered-appeasing-activist-mob
They better never go to the Connecticut statehouse in Hartford.  All those declicate  little snowflakes will flash evaporate at what's carved on the walls: swords, muskets, cannon.



An overdecorated style, but still visually striking.


Remember When Democrats Called Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative Star Wars To Make Fun of It?

8/30/17 USA Today:
The U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) said a U.S. warship successfully shot down a medium-range ballistic missile in a test off Hawaii on Wednesday, as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un vowed to press ahead with more missile tests in the Pacific.
The USS John Paul Jones detected and tracked a missile launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai with its onboard radar, before intercepting it with SM-6 missiles, the MDA said.
It said it marked the second time an SM-6 missile has successfully intercepted a medium-range ballistic missile in a test.
Part of it was that Democrats really wanted to keep our Mutual Assured Destruction doctrine: We won't stop the Soviets from killing us; we'll prevent war by threatening to respond to 150 million dead Americans with 200 million dead Soviets.  How did intellectuals and any decent people decide that was a more moral policy than SDI?  Because even then, the Democratic Party cared more about identity politics than the public good, and they needed Reagan as their Trump.

Why Civil War is Coming

8/29/17 San Francisco Chronicle has an article by a KTVU news anchor of his experience at the Berkeley riot:
I experienced hate firsthand today.
It came from these people dressed in all black at a protest in Berkeley. Ironically they were all chanting about no hate.
Some had shields and gloves. Some had helmets. Some had gas masks.
I was watching them and taking it all in. I came there on my own time. Because I wanted to see things first hand. I was dressed in shorts and a tank top.
At one point I took out my phone to take a picture.
And that's when it all happened.
The comments show the shear madness of the left out there.  The generation of brownshirts ready to set up concentration camps for us Untermenschen is made.

Remember EverLeftistGreen State College?

Where a progressive white professor was shamed for showing up on campus during "No Whites Day"?  8/29/17 The College Fix tells us:
Administrators at The Evergreen State College have announced that the embattled school faces a massive $2.1 million budget shortfall due in part to a drop in enrollment, and the institution has already handed out some temporary layoff notices as officials grapple with balancing the books.
In an Aug. 28 memo to the campus community titled “Enrollment and Budget Update,” officials report that fall 2017-18 registration is down about 5 percent, from 3,922 students to 3,713. But the problem is nearly all of the students they lost are nonresidents, who traditionally pay a much higher tuition to attend, officials explained in the memo, a copy of which was obtained by The College Fix.
Who would have guessed that a college dependent on an overwhelmingly  white state might have to face financial reality?  Just more white privilege, I guess.

A Friend Took An Awesome Picture

And sent it to us a poster

The Fruits of Child Sexual Abuse

 Depressing 8/30/17 Los Angeles Times article about the syphilis tsunami in Los Angeles,  mostly in gay men who are using the reduced (perceived) risks of AIDS as an excuse to drop condom use.   While most of those contacted are reluctant to help identify their sexual contacts,  and often unsure of their names, one emailed the STD tracer a list of 100 partners.   (I am sure each and every one was a deep and meaningful relationship.) 

Many years ago,  I had a coworker whose wife worked for Marin County Public Health.   One gay man with an STD, she asked how many sexual  contacts he had in the last 30 days.  He said "90." 
"No,  not how many times have you had sex in the last 30 days,  but how many different people have you had sex with?"

"90."

If you ever never done the math,  the rate of STD spread and infection increases exponentially with the increase in number of sexual partners each infected person has.  Double the number of partners power period of time,  and infected population quadruples.  4x gives 16x.  This is part of why AIDS spread rapidly through the gay community in the 1970s and 1980s, and syphilis continues to do so, and spread much more slowly in the straight population (except among IV-drug abusers and prostitutes, who were often the same people). 

Considering the relationship between childhood sexual abuse and adult variant sexual orientation,  the quite animalistic promiscuity that led to these problems is unsurprising and tragic.   It is hard to see this casual and often completely anonymous coupling as anything but a tragedy.

Just Poor People Who Want Part of the American Dream

http://abc13.com/houston-police-catch-armed-robbers-and-looters/2354955/ Looters may get life sentences in Houston.  How unfair; they are just victims of the 1%ers.  When will Antifa show up?  ☺

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

At Least I Recognize Today's Amazon Dropping

A garlic press.  A backup one is always useful.  

These Amazon Droppings drive my wife crazy;  she wants me to call them every time they arrive.   I do not much care; it is like having a rich,  eccentric uncle who does not know what you want or need,  but keeps sending stuff using a selector program with the END function at its core.

And This Explains California Government

(FoxNews.com) - A health professional in California reported cases where eclipse-viewers sought medical treatment because they put sunscreen on their eyeballs to view last week’s solar eclipse.
KRCTV.com reported that these individuals applied the sunscreen because they did not have the NASA-approved eyewear.
Hat tip Small Dead Animals.

And We Let Her Drive and Vote?

Hat tip Instapundit.  8/28/17 New York Post:
News outlets report the mother and son were inside a dressing room at the Adidas store in Lenox Square on Wednesday when the 10-year-old boy found what he thought was a toy gun under a bench. Atlanta police spokeswoman Stephanie Brown says the mother took the gun from the boy and pulled the trigger “to see if it was real.” A single shot was fired.
In Georgia?

Why Not a Fluid Birth Date As Well?

California could become the U.S. state with the most fluid definition of gender on its official state IDs if a bill making its way through the legislature becomes law.
The California Senate has already passed SB179, which would introduce a third gender option for state identification. Currently, driver’s licenses and other forms of official identification only contain options for male or female. The bill would allow a third option, which would likely be ‘X,’ according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
The bill allowing people to identify as “nonbinary” will be considered in the California Assembly. It would also make it easier for transgender people to make sure legal state documents appropriately reflect their gender.
I'm feeling pretty good today, much like I was at 40.  I'll call myself "transchronic."  My birth date should be a settable LED display on my license.

More Obamacare Success Stories

8/24/17 New York Post:
A major insurer run by New York state’s largest medical provider is pulling out of ObamaCare because of massive losses, the company announced Thursday.
Northwell Health (the former North Shore-Long Island Jewish Medical Center network ) blamed a flawed provision in the Affordable Care Act — and the lack of action in Washington to fix it — as the culprits for winding down its CareConnect insurance company.
CareConnect enrolled 14 percent of firms in New York’s small group market and 8 percent of customers in the individual ObamaCare market — mostly on Long Island and in New York City.
The firm said it had to pay $112 million last year into a risk insurance pool created to prop up insurers that had a disproportionate number of high-risk or money-losing clients.
As a bumper sticker popular with Boise progressives last year said: Affordable Health Care: Signed, Sealed, Delivered!

A Truly Wonderful Reminder of Free Enterprise

It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. Adam SmithRead more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/adamsmith136391.html
Instapundit   pointed me to this amazing Yahoo News story of how Waffle House helps the beleaguered and themselves:
One of the ways the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) measures hurricane damage is by the Waffle House Index. Waffle House, a popular 24-hour fast food chain in the Southeast, has a unique ability to operate solely on gas if necessary, so a closed Waffle House is often tantamount to disaster.
And while we won’t know yet how Hurricane Harvey will fare on the index, the attitude at Waffle Houses across Texas has been calm. The company’s staff has been preparing for months.
“We have our own special disaster teams and generators waiting to be shipped,” said one Waffle House employee in Galveston, Tex. “We’re open up until the city makes us close, probably later on tonight. As soon as it’s over we’ll be right back open.”
Hot meals are in demand after a hurricane, and Waffle House intends to serve them, with teams sent in from out of area to reopen and operate.

More evil capitalists here.

Businesses that deserve your custom (as the Brits say) when this crisis is past.

Finger Pointing Wrong Direction

8/29/17 Fox News has Kathy Griffin still blaming Trump for what happened to her career for imitating ISIS, holding a bloody paper mache head of Trump.  As Instapundit observes:
Note she still blames President Trump for her predicament — instead of herself.
Who would have expected such an outcome?  SJWs are not strong on this idea of cause and effect.  "It has not worked in nation after nation over the last century.  But this time will be different."

Monday, August 28, 2017

Where Did This Headline Appear?

Not FoxNews or an Alt-Right (whatever that means) site, but 8/28/18 Washington Post:
Black-clad antifa members attack peaceful right-wing demonstrators in Berkeley

Tire Shaving

For the next time we have a non-repairable flat: TireRack has a tire shaving service.  I could have ordered a new Continental CrossContact and had them shave it to depth.  This would have been several hundred dollars cheaper.  But they are already on their way.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Class Action Lawsuit Abuse

I have received more than a few notices of being a member of a class in a class action lawsuit where it appeared "our" lawyers received far more than us "injured" parties, and so I am glad to see this 8/25/17 New York Daily News article:
A U.S. appeals court on Friday threw out a class-action settlement intended to resolve claims that the Subway sandwich chain deceived customers by selling “Footlong” subs that were less than a foot long.
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago called the settlement “utterly worthless,” and said the customers’ lawyers were not entitled to attorney’s fees for convincing Subway it was better to make the case go away than fight.
“A class action that seeks only worthless benefits for the class and yields only fees for class counsel is no better than a racket and should be dismissed out of hand,” Circuit Judge Diane Sykes wrote for a three-judge panel. “That’s an apt description of this case.”

Even Lamestream Media Are Beginning to Learn

Thousands of counter protesters took to the streets of Berkeley on Sunday where they clashed with a handful of Trump supporters, leading to several violent clashes and at least 14 arrests....
There were shoving matches around well-known Orange County far-right figure Johnny Benitez. Some screamed “Go home Nazi,” as police tried to escort Benitez and Irma Hinojosa, a member of the Southern California group Latinos for Trump, through the crowd and out of the park....
Some anti-facists protesters, known as antifa, pounced when Joey Gibson, founder of the right-wing group Patriot Prayer, showed up with his crew. The protesters beat one man with a shield and another person wearing an American flag.
Some of the antifa protesters also threatened to break the cameras of anyone who filmed them, including journalists. One reporter tweeted that he had been pepper sprayed in one scuffle.
Moderate counter protesters were upset with the violence. "We need to get antifa out of here," said Jack Harris, who helped break up a fight.
Andrew Noruk, who was wearing a T-shirt denouncing both the Republican and Democratic parties when two young women came up to him and started yelling at him."You're a Nazi," they shouted, leaving Noruk, who said he came out to protest Trump supporters, confused.

Identity Politics and Racism


IOWA CITY (KWWL) - An Assistant Professor at the University of Iowa is being accused of racism after publishing an academic paper titled "Teaching to deconstruct whiteness in higher education."
Jodi Linley published the article earlier this month writing she works to "dismantle whiteness" in her curriculum....
Linley writes about personal experiences such as growing up in mostly white rural Iowa and then going to college where she journaled about how she "could now see white supremacy benefiting me as a white person and other white people around me."
Later in the article Linley writes about grouping students off by race when teaching saying it's a "welcomed relief" for students of color to be able to talk about racism "without defensive reactions from white peers."
As for white students she says the groups help reveal "their own white ignorance."
Of course, like the idiot who wrote about the eclipse skipping most blacks, she is so pasty white as to make me and my daughter look like people of color.  Encouraging everyone to see themselves by race just encourages neo-Nazis to promote white identity.  Race is the one thing you have no influence over at all.  Any pride you have about your race is a statement of your own inadequacy.

White privilege: a projection mechanism for people like Linley.  I did not feel it growing up.  Admittedly, it was a racially mixed neighborhood.  I guess my white privilege was parents who read and regarded education as important.

8/16/17 Leo includes a list of demands from a Black Lives Matter leader:
1. White people, if you don’t have any descendants, will your property to a black or brown family. Preferably one that lives in generational poverty.
2. White people, if you’re inheriting property you intend to sell upon acceptance, give it to a black or brown family. You’re bound to make that money in some other white privileged way.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Us Military Love Letter to the Rifle and NRA

From 1957:

Statues

Small Dead Animals reminds us that the Taliban were destroying statues of Buddha in 2001 to general disapproval, and there were not even any Buddhists left there.  Now, similar fanatics are out to destroy statues that remind us of the past.

The WD NAS 4TB

Used the three step QuickStart card.  Only a few mild surprises, and it backing up my Lenovo and my wife's Lenovo, hourly.  Definitely slower than a USB drive backup, but acceptable.  Now two full backups, on completely separate devices.  I will sleep better.

Maybe Less to the Story Than It Appears

But with the insanity that transgender has introduced, who knows?  8/23/17 Washington Times:
An elite charter school in California has been rocked by scandal since the end of the last school year, when a kindergarten teacher read her class a pair of books advocating transgender ideology, and a male kindergartener was reintroduced to the class as a girl.
Now first-graders at Rocklin Academy Gateway risk a trip to the principal’s office if they refer to their transgender classmate by the wrong name or gender pronoun, said Karen England, executive director of the Capitol Resource Institute, a pro-family group based in Sacramento.
“There was a little girl who had been in class with the little boy all last year,” Ms. England said. “They’re in different classes now, but she saw him on the playground yesterday and called him by his name. The little girl was told ‘you can’t do that, his name is this name,’ and ‘you need to call him a “her.”’ Then she was called to the principal’s office.”
Great comment, which might work with 1 out of 1000 California judges:
Time to drag out Alinsky's Rule #4 and use it against the radicals.
I would send written notification to the school that my son's name has now been changed to "Star Lord". His preferred pronoun, "Supreme Commander".
Also give written notice that failure to comply with this directive will result in a massive lawsuit, as directed by the CA statutes regarding non-discrimination based on preferred names and pronouns.
Repeated violations will certainly damage his tender psyche. Any administrators or teachers that are repeat offenders will be sued personally for intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Downside of 4WD

One of the tires has a nail in the sidewall, so not repairable.  But tires on a 4WD need to be replaced with similar levels of tread depth, so one nailed tire means four new tires.  It is a shame there is not an exchange where tires of your type with 11,000 miles on them could be purchased.

Oh yeah, the the tire store's estimate included nitrogen fill at $5 per tire.  I've seen this scam being pushed for several years now: nitrogen weighs less than air.  Yeah, probably about 2 grams per tire.  (Air is 78% nitrogen.)  Of course, saving Mother Earth is part of the nitrogen hype, so that's a good sign that it makes no sense.  I am surprised that Congress hasn't created a tax credit for it.

TireRack.com gets me H-rated Sumitomos for $359 delivered (with road hazard warranty) and $131.80 for installation, compared to $659 for a tire brand that I do not know.  The Sumitomos have a UTQSG rating of: 600 A A.

I have put the other three tires on craigslist in case someone needs that size for a non-4WD, or has tires at 11,000 miles of wear.  Even a few dollars makes sense, because I have to pay a tire disposal fee to the installer.  Do tire stores still sell used tires?

Shouting "Wolf" In a Crowded Theater

8/24/17 National Review:
Yesterday Nancy Pelosi granted an interview to a San Francisco television station, and the first ninety seconds are something to behold. She repeated her request that the National Park Service deny a permit to an alleged “alt-right demonstration” called Patriot Prayer. Pelosi said “not allow these elements to use a national park to spew forth their venom.” She then said that “protecting people” was the Park Service’s “first responsibility.” When the interviewer, Pam Moore, pressed Pelosi to consider Patriot Prayer’s First Amendment rights, Pelosi responded, “The Constitution does not say that a person can yell wolf in a crowded theater. If you are endangering people, then you don’t have a constitutional right to do that.”
Third, the quote is wrong. She’s obviously referring to Oliver Wendell Holmes’s famous statement in Schenck v. United States that “The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic.” Fire. Wolf. Whatever. It’s not important compared to the next point below.
Fourth, anyone who quotes Schenck is quoting bad law. In fact, it’s one of the most “odious free speech decisions in the Court’s history.” The court upheld the Espionage Act conviction of the secretary of the Socialist Party of America for writing and distributing a pamphlet opposing the draft during World War I. Schenck could never be sent to jail for this conduct today.
Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/450809/yelling-wolf-crowded-theater-nancy-pelosi-flunks-constitutional-law
Can't the Democrats get someone competent?

Monday's Eclipse

It took a while to remove internal reflections from most pictures, and the great corona picture at the end is by reader Anthony Argyiou, who came to my place for the eclipse.
video

Way Better Than a Nigerian Prince

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I message you on this e-mail address, because I got it it with my soft, and I guess you for sure check this work e-mail.
The most important thing that I created video, on one side it shows your screen record, on second your cams record. Its very funny. But it was sophisticated ,so I proud of it.
As a result- if you want me to destroy all this compromising evidence, here is my Bitcoin account address- 14r4WEjfCYFSqX1DkQgV9gDqjMCuUT6Pzb (it should be without «spaces» or «=»,check it). If you do not know how to make btc transactions, you can ask google or youtube for advice- its very easy. It seems to me, that 305 usd will solve our problem and will destroy our touchpoint in perpetuity. You have one day after opening this letter(I put special pixel in it, ill know when you open it). If you wont finish transaction, ill share the evidence with all contacts I’ve collected from you.
Finally, you can ask police for help, but, obviously, they will not find me for 1 day, so you will be shamed at all. Sorry for misprints, I am foreign. 

Progressives Explain Why Destroying Journalist Cameras is Good

During the anti-fascist mobilization against the racist far-right in Quebec city on Sunday, a Global News camera was destroyed by black bloc participants 1. Afterwards, an anti-racist in the crowd was overheard asking his friend “I understand attacking the fascists, and even the police who protect them, but journalists?”
We’d like to offer an explanation for why this happened, and why it will continue to be a necessity in demonstrations where people will be breaking the law.
Sometimes, it is necessary to go against what the mainstream considers “acceptable”, to break the law in order to do the ethical thing. Those who mask up to fight the racist far-right have decided, at great personal risk, that they will use any means necessary to shut down fascist organizing. Many of us believe that the entire system needs to be abolished, that the laws are oppressive, or that those who make the laws are responsible for a serious and urgent problem; whether that’s the destruction of our planet, the hundreds of thousands of home foreclosures, murders carried out by police with impunity, etc.
I think I see a "you won't obey oppressive laws?  We won't do so either" defense coming from running over Antifas.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Catholic Church Taking This "Universal" IDea A Little Far

I presume that you know that "catholic" means universal.  8/24/17 Marin Independent-Journal:
Removal of a number of statues and other smaller Catholic icons from the campus of San Domenico School in San Anselmo has raised concerns among some parents.
In an email to the school’s board of directors, Dominican Sisters of San Rafael and the head of school, Shannon Fitzpatrick objected to the removal of the statues and other steps the school has taken in an effort to make the school more inclusive.
“Articulating an inclusive foundation appears to mean letting go of San Domenico’s 167-year tradition as a Dominican Catholic school and being both afraid and ashamed to celebrate one’s heritage and beliefs,” wrote Fitzpatrick, whose 8-year-old son attends the school.
She added, “In our time here, the word ‘Catholic’ has been removed from the mission statement, sacraments were removed from the curriculum, the lower school curriculum was changed to world religions, the logo and colors were changed to be ‘less Catholic,’ and the uniform was changed to be less Catholic.”...
I'm waiting for the halal lunches and the beheadings.
Mirza Khan, the school’s director of philosophy, ethics and world religions, said, “The Dominican teaching philosophy is not to teach there is only one truth. 
The stupid burns.

Research Request

The Alabama Policy Institute asked me for data on effects of permitless carry laws on murder rates.  I thought that I had already done something on this.  An MP grabbed an angry militant suffragette who had invaded his private club in London, and was carrying the angry and yelling troublemaker. A servant said, ":Sir, there's no exit that direction."  "There shall be."  And concerning that study, "There shall be."

It would help a lot to find the effective dates of these laws so that I can properly cite them.  Alaska's law was effective in 2004, I believe.  Arkansas July 1, 2013.  Wisconsin in 2011 or 2012.  Wyoming, July 1, 2011.  North Dakota 2017.  New Hampshire 2/2017.  Missouri 1/2017.  Maine 2016 or 2017.  Idaho 7/2016.  Arizona 8/25/2017.  Did I miss any?

If you have a citation to the statute or other official source for effective date, could you email it to me?  I have found them for  Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

How Many Megasieverts to Kill Goat heads and Other Satanic Weeds?

If you have ever stepped on one of these that migrated into the house on your shoes,  you know why my wife calls them Satan's weed.  More realistically, I need a soil sterilizer that is to KillzAll  what the cat and the mouse in Mouse Hunt were to a real cat and mouse.  Something that kills for years on end. Nerve gas for weeds.

"Crazy" is Such a Judgmental Word

8/23/17 USA Today:
When Republican Sen. Bob Corker said last week that President Trump hasn't "been able to demonstrate the stability" needed for success and recommended he "move way beyond himself," it was news mostly because Corker has been one of Trump's key supporters in Congress.

Then James Clapper, who served in top intelligence jobs under former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Wednesday morning questioned Trump's "fitness to be in this office" and said he was worried about the president's access to the nuclear codes. Clapper, who had a long military career, is a close friend and longtime colleague of Trump's Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, a former Marine Corps general.

"If in a fit of pique he decides to do something about Kim Jong Un, there's actually very little to stop him," Clapper, former head of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said on CNN. "The whole system is built to ensure rapid response if necessary. So there's very little in the way of controls over exercising a nuclear option, which is pretty damn scary."
All the usual suspects come out to argue for removing that crazy man from office.   And there is a brief discussion of the Goldwater Rule, which prohibits psychiatrists from conjecturing about or diagnosing public figures without an actual examination.
"If one has questions about an individual's public behavior or capacity to govern, it's incredibly problematic to conflate with a mental illness," says psychiatrist and Harvard Medical School professor Rebecca Brendel.

Brendel is a consultant to the ethics committee of the American Psychiatric Association, which authored the Goldwater ethics rule. It says psychiatrist members of the American Psychiatric Association shouldn't offer a "professional opinion" about someone in the public eye … "unless he or she has conducted an examination and has been granted proper authorization for such a statement.”

Doing so when it's about an individual a psychiatrist hasn't treated diverges from established treatment methods, which include "careful study of medical history and first-hand examination of the patient," wrote psychiatrist and APA President Maria Oquendo.
So what is this?
After Trump's declaration a week before Charlottesville that military action by North Korea would be met with "fire and fury like the world has never seen," Lee and four other psychiatrists who contributed to her book wrote a letter to all members of Congress.

"It no longer takes a psychiatrist to recognize the alarming patterns of impulsive, reckless, and narcissistic behavior — regardless of diagnosis — that, in the person of President Trump, put the world at risk," read the letter to Congress. "We now find ourselves in a clear and present danger, especially concerning North Korea and the president’s command of the U.S. nuclear arsenal."
But also:
Michael Welner, who is board certified in psychiatry, forensic psychiatry, and disaster medicine — which includes managing patients exposed to nuclear radiation — says Trump has shown throughout his life that he is an “exceptionalist,” adding that “President Trump’s exceptionalism embodies healthy narcissism.”

Trump’s determination to win “dovetails with the ethos of American exceptionalism,” which Welner says contributes to his “success in the face of adversity despite others’ efforts to undermine him."
The left is now "by all means necessary" committed to the status quo.  Hence this additional dig at us "deplorables":
"Trump isn’t crazy — but we are for electing him and not taking seriously the existential threats his policies pose to the health of the people in America, the future and the safety of the world," Frances says.
 Worst of all: the crowd that thinks your sex is determined by how you feel that day are calling Trump crazy?

Norsemen

Saw this series on Netflix: Ripoff of Game of Thrones, or perhaps an obscure foreign TV series from which Game of Thrones comes?  I have not gotten very deep in, but one of the captives aboard the Viking vessel complains about "insufficient information flow."  The captain complains to a subordinate that he is supposed to come across as a little crazy, "But that's not who I am."

Sleep Study Last Night

This was two hours of sleep followed by several hours with a CPAP mask.  There were so many wires and sensors that I feared someone would ping my IP address, with unpleasant results.  Don't even think about a DDoS attack!  (Yes,  I watched The Matrix one too many times on a flight to the 1999 solar eclipse in Britain. )

Anyway, the first CPAP mask was impossible for sleep; the second one, while uncomfortable, at least allowed sleep.  My daughter tells me that many of her clients report CPAP as a life-changing experience.

It is now 4:30, and for five hours  of sleep,  and running around all day, I feel pretty good.   I wish that I found a workable CPAP solution in 2006.  I might have survived the 2008 HP layoff and be more comfortably retired than I am (which is pretty darn comfortable).

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

More Fake (or at Least Careless) News From CNN

8/21/17 Daily Wire:
When famed comedian and actor Jerry Lewis died on Sunday, CNN was quick to post a headline — except they published a heder on the death of singer Jerry Lee Lewis. The rockabilly singer, best known for "Great Balls of Fire" and "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" is very much alive.
Hat Tip to Small Dead Animals.

Those Evil Statues

8/21/17 Washington Times:
A monument to Christopher Columbus that was over 200 years old was smashed with a sledgehammer Monday morning to combat a “culture of white supremacy.”
A YouTube channel titled “Popular Resistance” posted footage of men in hoodies destroying a monument to Columbus and his famous voyage in 1492. The individuals carried signs that read “Racism: Tear it down,” and “The future is racial and economic justice.”
Wouldn't it be nice if criminals were prosecuted?

I Would Never Have Believed This Five Years Ago


Great comments at Instapundit:
They must be spiking their Brawndo over at ESPN headquarters. Because this is idiocy on stilts.
If you do not recognize "Brawndo": watch the tragic documentary Idiocracy: "Brawndo With Electrolytes It's Got What Plants Crave."

and:
The Onion might as well shut down. Life is now beyond parody and satire itself no longer serves any purpose. So called "progressives" have rendered The Onion superfluous.

Earth First: We'll Log the Other Planets Next

I am sure that you have seen this bumper sticker.  Here's another reason (substitute "mine" for "log").  8/22/17 Gizmodo:
Move over Jupiter and Saturn, a crap load of diamonds could be found in two of the most mysterious places in the Solar System: Uranus and Neptune. Researchers using the Linac Coherent Light Source at Stanford have demonstrated in the lab— with one of the brightest sources of X-rays on the planet—that the depths of these ice giants are perfect for the formation of diamonds. 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

If You Are Local

This shipping tube is a bit over 6' long and 6" diameter.   I ordered up some steel tubing.   I only needed 5' length,  but I saw 57" and I stupidly thought,  "That is just slightly shorter than 6'." 

Anyway, I hate to throw away this very sturdy shipping container.  If no one is interested, I will put it on Craigslist.

Checklist for Next Total Solar Eclipse

1. Make sure that I can identify the ND1000 and ND2 settings on the filter.  (Serious internal reflections on some images.)

2. Have the Canon Powershot out for the corona.  I took no effective corona pictures because of #1.  An unfiltered camera is the right solutin.

Any Quick Way to Remove Internal Reflections With GIMP?

Just starting to get eaten.

Using Color Picker and Clone isn't quick:

Chromatic aberration was a problem that required monochroming them.  A few pictures came out unaccountably blue.

How Dark Was It At Totality?

Picture taken by my department chair of me photographing the corona.

A Recent Customer Sent This Picture of His Meade LX200 in Use Yesterday


Monday, August 21, 2017

Awesome

Shadow bands,  Bailey's beads, diamond ring effect, falling temperatures. Pictures tomorrow.  I had the 5" refractor set up with solar filter.  You could see the unevenness of the Moon's edge, which causes Baily's Beads.  Venus was oppressively bright at the zenith.  Alas, I did not remove the ND filter in time to get the corona.

Was the Eclipse Moved to a Racially More Diverse Path?

No unusual traffic on D-55 at this hour.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Beach Sand is Racist

Have your ever noticed that pretty much all beach sand is white.   It is not required; I have enjoyed a black sand beach in the more racially diverse state of Hawaii.  This symbol of white supremacy must end!   We demand replacement of all white beach sand with either polychrome or black beach sand throughout the U.S.

The Madness Spreads

HotAir  tells of a dispute over USC'S mascot,  a horse named Traveler (N.B. one l). That is only one l different from the name of Gen. Lee's horse,  and he is an all white horse,  so he has to go! http://hotair.com/archives/2017/08/20/charlottesville-confederate-statue-debate/.  

No MOATJ Yet

As we drove to church this morning on ID -55, there was no evidence of the expected Mother Of All Traffic Jams.

The northbound traffic was spread over several days.  Southbound by 9:00 PM last night was indeed the MOATJ.

An Actual Foreign Intelligence Scandal!

Federal authorities are investigating whether sensitive data was stolen from congressional offices by several Pakistani-American tech staffers and sold to Pakistani or Russian intelligence, knowledgeable sources say.
What started out 16 months ago as a scandal involving the alleged theft of computer equipment from Congress has turned into a national-security investigation involving FBI surveillance of the suspects.
Investigators now suspect that sensitive US government data — possibly including classified information — could have been compromised and may have been sold to hostile foreign governments that could use it to blackmail members of Congress or even put their lives at risk.
“This is a massive, massive scandal,” a senior US official familiar with the widening probe told The Post.
But it involves the former DNC chair, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, so go back to sleep.

Guess What? Murderers Tend Not to Be Socially Conscious

8/6/17 CNN:
(CNN)Going into the weekend, Baltimore activist Erricka Bridgeford had a simple hope and request: Nobody kill anybody for 72 hours.
It was too much to ask for in a city on pace to record its highest annual homicide toll, a place still reeling from the racially-charged riots that followed the 2015 death of Freddie Gray at the hands of police.
Some 40 hours into the grassroots ceasefire, a 24-year-old man was fatally shot. Within a few hours, a 37-year-old was also killed by gunshots.
And Baltimore police are once again investigating not one but two homicides.
Hat tip: Of Arms and the Law

    Saturday, August 19, 2017

    A Free Speech Rally, And Antifa Reasponse

    8/19/17 Yahoo News:
    Police estimated that as many as 40,000 people packed into the streets around the nation's oldest park....
    The rally never numbered more than a few dozen people, and its speakers could not be heard due to the shouts of those protesting it and the wide security cordon between the two sides. It wrapped up about an hour earlier than planned....
    Twenty-seven people were arrested, largely for scuffles in which some protesters threw rocks and bottles of urine at police dressed in riot gear, Police Commissioner William Evans told reporters.

    When the Democrat Presstitutes Warn The Party, They Should Listen

    Associated Press:
    Dems risk culture war fight in Charlottesville response...
    Polls taken after last weekend’s violence offer some evidence backing Bannon’s and Trump’s view. While polls found widespread disgust with white supremacists, a Marist Poll for NPR and PBS found that just 27 percent of adults queried believe Confederate monuments “should be removed because they are offensive.” About two out of three white and Latino respondents said they should remain, as did 44 percent of black respondents. 
    The Democrats might want to visit America.  There is more to it than caviar, champagne, Kobe beef, and faculty lounges.
    l

    This Would Never Happen Today

    I was watching a documentary called Mission Control.  They reminded me of this:


    The Moon landing is certainly my proudest moment as an American.  What we could do if we set our minds to it.  And moments like this do nothing to diminish that pride.  The SJWs today would have demanded Mission Control crash them into Moon.

    If You Have Not Yet Made Plans for the Eclipse in the Boise Area

    Bogus Basin.  You will have an awesome photo of the darkness meeting the light looking south.  If I could be in two places at once on eclipse day, I would be there too.

    I Knew It: the Eclipse is Racist

    On August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse will arrive mid-morning on the coast of Oregon. The moon’s shadow will be about 70 miles wide, and it will race across the country faster than the speed of sound, exiting the eastern seaboard shortly before 3 p.m. local time. It has been dubbed the Great American Eclipse, and along most of its path, there live almost no black people.
    See, we are showing our white supremacy by keeping black people away from the best show in the universe.   David Thompson calls this essay "excruciatingly woke."  There are many verbs that could follow excruciatingly with equal value.

    Of course, she is a beneficiary of white privilege:
    Harvard Law Professor.  Hence, the famous William F. Buckley quote: 

    I'd rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University.Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/w/williamfb400600.html

    The comments at Instapundit are painfully funny:
    She didn't jump the shark, she pole vaulted over it. 
    Hater Creator plotted racist otbits from the get-go. Somebody up there doesn't like you. 
    Okay, in the contest to inject race into any subject, making the eclipse racist is the current winner.
    Another sign that, despite herculean efforts by the left, we have still not reached peak stupid.

    The Sun is so white hot that is racist.  There are only a few black sunspots.  All the blackness is segregated into these tiny areas.   What do you expect?  And the number of sunspots is in decline.  I blame Trump!

    And RedState comments:
    Libby Taard: I'm so pissed at the sun and moon I'm going to go out and topple some statues.Robustoman: "Alice. When you finish that bottle of wine, I need a 1000 word think-piece on the solar eclipse and race relations." - Editor, The AtlanticRobert Kirby: Congratulations on pioneering a new idiocy: identity astronomy.This eclipse is on the wrong side of history.

    PhotoStitching Software

    I complained a while back about how much I missed the panorama software HP used to include with their cameras, and how none of the free equivalent worked well, or were hard to master.  I discovered that Canon includes PhotoStitch.  I just needed to download it.  Still not sure that I have mastered it:
    I used the images that I used Hugin for in May to see if the results were similar.


    Yup.

    Where is the "My Documents" Folder Actually Stored in Windows 7?

    It is not under C:\Users\clayton\Documents.  There is a C:\Users\clayton\My Documents folder, but it is empty.  Nor do subfolders of it appear when I search C: from Windows Explorer.

    According to Windows Explorer, Libraries->Documents->My Documents
    Documents has a folder teaching which it claims is in C:\users\Clayton\Documents.  This folder contains many others.  In the command shell, C:\users\Clayton\Documents\teaching contains only one folder.

    If I open C:\users\clayton in Windows Explorer, it shows My Documents folder, but in the command shell, it is not there.  I know that My Documents actually points to C:\Users\clayton\Documents, but why cannot I see the folders there in the command shell?

    Curiously, folders that appear in C:\Users\clayton\Documents through the command shell have a clearly visible folder icon, while the missing ones have a faded folder icon.

    My Music, My Pictures, and My Videos are all where you would expect them.

    If you came here looking for a solution: the folders and files in Windows Explorer that have dimmed out icons are hidden.  They are therefore invisible in the shell.  Use properties to change the hidden attribute.

    Backup Storage

    I mentioned a while back that my 1TB external USB hard drive had failed.  I am now backing up to my 4TB external hard drive.  I had some weird hiccup with last night's Windows 7 security upgrade and suddenly became terrified of losing everything.  I currently have my wife's PC backing up to a spare 1TB external drive.

    While searching for another 4 TB drive, I noticed for just a bit more money, WD 4TB My Cloud Personal Network Attached Storage - NAS, so Ethernet instead of USB.  This lets me backup both PCs through the network.  and access my files remotely as well.  I assume that Gigabit Ethernet will beat USB 3.0 on speed.  Anyone think of a reason not to go this way?

    Operation Chokepoint Strangled

    If you missed it, the Obama Administration had the FDIC pressure banks into terminating the accounts of "high-risk businesses," which meant payday lenders and firearms dealers.

    Now, I do not have any love for the payday lenders who charge amazing interest on very short-term loans.  Often the people taking out these loans go from deep financial crisis to deeper because of these loans.  But these businesses are lawful and for some people, these may be an alternative to failing to pay the rent or electric bill.

    Firearms dealers are not by any stretch of the imagination in a similar category.  This was just Obama using his power to injure small businesses that his owners find distasteful.  Here's the letter from DOJ to Congress announcing the end of Chokepoint.  Hat Tip NRA/ILA.

    Friday, August 18, 2017

    Barcelona Attack Was a Copycat of Charlottesville



    Odd, I thought that I had read of other Islamoterrorist attacks using vehicles.

    Paranoid Trump & Islamic Extremists

    A KNIFEMAN killed two people and injured six people, including a woman pushing a baby in a pram, in a stabbing spree in Finland.
    Armed police scrambled to the middle of Turku as an attacker reportedly rampaged through the city....
    Interior Minister Paula Risikko said: "We have not been able to confirm the person's identity... we have been in contact with the immigration service as the person looks like a foreigner."
    So Swede, or Dane?  8/18/17 Daily Mail:
    It was also reported that a man was heard screaming 'Allahu Akbar' during the attack, but others have stressed this was merely misheard Finnish. 
    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4802796/Multiple-people-injured-attack-Finland.html#ixzz4q9uP9gG0 Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook 
    Of course, can't be Arabic.

    Too Technological a Society

    At the store I saw two toddlers in a supermarket cart.  I could have sworn I heard the mother say,  "There's no Internet here!" Sure enough,  the toddler has a tablet in hand.

    Today's Gross Understatement

    Traffic advisory sign on ID-55 just as you leave Eagle.  "SOLAR ECLIPSE MONDAY.  EXPECT DELAYS."

    Add This to Your List of Humor Sites

    Sad & Useless, which gave us that PhotoShop extravaganza includes gems like this horse in a suit.

    Thursday, August 17, 2017

    Today's Hints for Beginning Amateur Astronomers

    It can take along time for the glass in a refractor lens or reflector mirror to cool to ambient temperatures--even more for Schmidt-Cassegrain telescopes.  During that time, image quality will be awful.  If you have just acquired your first telescope and are underwhelmed, plan on giving it an hour (or two if a large one) before being disappointed.