Monday, June 30, 2008

If Gore Really Meant It

Congratulations!  Since leaving the White House Al Gore has earned well over $100 million dollars as he has continued his crusade against the evils of man's impact on the world.

I am glad he is doing well and embracing capitalism, seriously!  He grabbed an idea and marketed the hell out of it and some people ate it up.  I don't even begrudge him his home energy usage, other then the hypocrisy of the Goracle being the King of Carbon, after all he buys carbon offset credits from his own company, right?

What I don't understand is why he doesn't actually do something that would not only help solve his signature green issue but would actually improve and prepare America as well? Of course helping America could impact his image and his, "citizen of the world" standing, but I think he could spin the issue to his advantage.

As Mr. Gore knows from the recent upgrades to his home, solar energy is very expensive -- to the point of still being too expensive to be practical for the average home:, operated by solar industry interests and the DOE, has a handy Solar Estimator that calculates an estimated cost for a home solar PV system and provides a list of contractors in your area. It uses some curious formulas that I don't quite understand to calculate positive ROI, but it provides some interesting insights.  (...)
Conclusion: While good for the environment (assuming "green" manufacturing practices), residential solar PV systems are still too expensive and not yet cost effective. Expect this to change, however, as R&D produces better and cheaper solar panels and manufacturing ramps up.
Middle class America simply can't afford to install these units, even after tax credits, they are just too expensive.

If Mr. Gore were serious about saving us from ourselves, his carbon offset company would stop paying to plant trees, saving the Rain Forest, or preventing third world advances by pressing green only advancements.

Rather, if Mr. Gore, as the former Vice President of The United States, wanted to do his part for every aspect of American life, from energy independence, to economic stability, and even national security he would use those carbon offsets to purchase and install solar panels here in the states.

Wouldn't the overall impact of such a program be far greater then planting a tree?  Of course it wouldn't encourage the sweeping changes the environmentalists want, but is the goal really the changes or the environment?

He could start with schools and then pledge to have a panel installed on each and every home (that wanted one, not mandated!) by a date certain.  I would sign up for that!  Imagine the impact a lower electric bill would have on the poor each and every month!

The impact would not only be felt today but would help to ensure that our nations electric production capacity were prepared for the demand of the electric vehicles of the future, something that really needs to be addressed if electric ends up being the solution.

I like the idea and would start a company myself if I had the money.  Mr. Gore has the money, how about he put it to work helping rather then just blowing hot air.

Daily Trek -- June 30, 2008 -- Catch Up

What'd I miss? Everything you need to know to stay informed each day in 5 minutes or less! This is a make up edition of the Daily Trek as I was out having medical tests last week. It also gives me an opportunity to get the format of the Trek down as I am going to make this a regular item.
A McCain presidency would mean electric cars powered by nuclear plants, clean coal.David Brock on Obama,

"He’s the most effectively political creature we’ve seen in decades. Even Bill Clinton wasn’t smart enough to succeed in politics by pretending to renounce politics." David Brooks

Obama used his own Presidential Seal two weeks ago but scrapped it the following Monday, but was the seal illegal? I don't think so but could be.

Obama's fundraising results have dropped since February and the Reverend Wright issue hit the news, but his spending hasn't. He spent more in May then he brought in.

A compromise has been reached in FISA and Obama decided opposing it wasn't smart, after opposing it.

Mark Shields says Obama couldn't pass a polygraph test.

Why did Obama claim he, "extended health care for wounded troops," when he wasn't there to vote the day that law passed?

President Bush called out the Democrats on Oil production, and rightfully so!

Meanwhile that congress has the lowest approval ratings since they started asking. Compare that to our military and their high ratings!

McCain put out a campaign ad calling Obama Dr. No because he says no to every solution that would get us out of the energy problem. No drilling, no nuclear, no prize for battery -- other then taxes what does Obama want?

If the Democrats don't want to drill because it wouldn't solve an actual problem for 5 years, why are they so dead set on doing everything they can to solve a theoretical problem 100 years from now? How about Medicare and Social Security?

"It's a lethal thing to suddenly raise taxes," he explains. "This would be devastating to the world economy, to the United States, and it would be, I think, political suicide" Robert Mundell, economist. So should the Republicans get a unified message on taxes or would it sound like more of the same in this season of change and non-politics politics?

Obama says Republicans are going to run a racist campaign against him.

It also seems rather humorous that the Presidential candidate who was supposed to be such a "uniter" and transcend race is the one talking about it the most. 

Obama's campaign is making, "homemade," signs for the crowds. You have to admit they know how to work it! If our war propaganda had been half this good Iraq would not be an issue today.
Lots more later today.

Update -- Note to bloggers, if you use the draft dashboard don't click on the edit pencil under a post as it loses all formating currently.  I think I have fixed it.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Inside The Liberal Mind -- Juan Williams, if we were armed, "We'd all be shooting our husbands and wives!"

via RedLasso

Inside the liberal mind -- Juan Williams explains the honest truth, liberals believe people can't be trusted, especially with guns. Even his fellow elite media members can't be trusted as he explains that they would be shooting their husbands and wives if they were allowed to carry weapons!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Day Of Rest -- Post Testing

Hey, I am restarting meds today, slowly, and recovering from an exhausting week.  Regular posting to begin shortly.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Supreme Court Strikes Down DC Gun Law

The Supreme Court affirmed the individual's right to bear arms.

Check out SCOTUS blog for the ruling.

Lunch break from testing, more to follow.

Testing Continues

Testing continues and I am miserable, but that won't stop the Supreme Court from issuing their ruling on the DC gun ban! It should be on the SCOTUS Blog sometime after 10am central.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Who Is Ultimately Responsible For High Gas Prices -- So That's Why We Can't Get A Compromise

Bottom line:

Democrats blame YOU!
Hence their solutions are designed to punish and rehabilitate each and every one of us!
"It's your fault so you must pay and change!"

Republicans blame Government.
Hence their solutions are designed to get Government out of the way and let Americans
do what Americans do best!
"We can solve this problem without starving the world or some other stupid government run debacle if you just get out of the way!"

Extended explanation:

There is a fundamental difference between the belief of the Democrats and the Republicans in Washington about who is ultimately responsible for today's high gas prices and this difference is why a compromise is so hard to reach on this issue.

Democrats make noise about blaming the oil companies, the speculators, the Saudi's and of course the Republicans. But the Democrats underlying belief, deep down, is that the ultimate responsibility for our current energy situation falls squarely on the every single resident of the United States! (This should be no surprise to any observer of history over the last 45 years or so.)

That's right, you and I, your neighbor and even their infant child!

You use too much, don't conserve, are wasteful, and fat too -- if you would walk more you would use less energy and maybe loose some of that butt you have!
Barack Obama, Sunday, May 18, 2008,

"We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times..."

That is why their solutions are all punitive. Tax increases, increased regulation, forced change, even outlawing incandescent light bulbs. These are all punishing roadblocks and attempts at social engineering.

On the other hand Republicans believe that the ultimate responsibility for high gas prices lies with Government.
In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.
Ronald Reagan, First Inaugural Address

Thus their solutions involve eliminating restrictions and getting government out of the way.

The American people need to send a message to the Democrats in congress, loud and clear, that we are not to blame -- THEY ARE. We can't afford to let this continue!

As Jean Kirkpatrick said back in 1984, "(T)hey always blame America first. The American people know better."

Until the Democrats understand this they will not allow the American people the freedom to do what Americans do best -- solve the problem using hard work and ingenuity.

Wow, That's A Responsive Campaign!

Just Monday I noted that Congressman Don Manzullo's campaign site was lacking even basic elements such as his bio as well as quickly accessible links to items such as Manzullo's energy plan.

Well, by Tuesday morning both of those items had been corrected. Now that is a responsive campaign! I'm sorry I wasn't able to mention it right when I noticed it Tuesday AM but I had to get to my specialist.

Having links to web based (non-pdf or word doc) information about policy and issues right on the front page and throughout campaign sites is a must for any campaign in 2008, pdf's and doc files are not web or mobile friendly as you are not always somewhere you can download the files.

Congressman Manzullo also has a presence on Youtube, here.

Hey, Did You Know Someone Is Challenging Durbin For Sentate -- Meet Dr. Steve Sauerberg!

I like what he has to say.

Having watched Durbin on the news for years now I would add that Durbin is probably the most partisan politician in Washington today. He will do anything to prevent solutions that do not advance his party's ambitions (and thus his own as the second ranking Democrat in the Senate) no matter how much harm is done to Americans.

There are not many people in the world that can make my stomach turn as the speak, but within a couple of minutes of Durbin blaming everything on George Bush I really have to fight back the acid burps!

Here Dr. Steve Sauerberg's YouTube channel and here is his Senate Campaign Site. In case you forget his name he made the site easy to remember, Dr. Steve For Senate. It is also a pretty good campaign site, even including a multimedia page that includes his YouTube videos.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Testing Continues

Testing continues today so nothing this AM.

I will try for a Daily Trek and catch up later today.

Monday, June 23, 2008

CO2 Rises, Temperatures Remain The Same

The American Thinker has two posts today on Carbon: the New Chemical Villain, and Your 2007 Carbon Footprint that do a great job of educating readers of some of the facts relating to CO2.

Another interesting post this weekend was by Anthony Watts on his blog, Watts Up With That, where he does the math on the numbers from the last 11 years and finds that despite continuing increases in CO2 levels (which are still only 385 parts per MILLION) the earths temperature has remained virtually the same.

Yet, as if in a panicked response, James Hanson of NASA is set to testify this week before congress and is expected to:
(C)all for the chief executives of large fossil fuel companies to be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature, accusing them of actively spreading doubt about global warming in the same way that tobacco companies blurred the links between smoking and cancer.
Is it a wonder that most Britons, who get more of a daily dose of eco-wacko alarmist media then we do:

The majority of the British public is still not convinced that climate change is caused by humans - and many others believe scientists are exaggerating the problem, according to an exclusive poll for The Observer.

The results have shocked campaigners who hoped that doubts would have been silenced by a report last year by more than 2,500 scientists for the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which found a 90 per cent chance that humans were the main cause of climate change and warned that drastic action was needed to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

In our solar system planets with atmospheres start with the crushingly thick air on Venus, Mercury having lost any it may have started with as it was burned off by the nearby sun. As you progress out past Earth to Mars the atmosphere gets thinner and thinner. Could it be the sun has something to do with that?

The Earth has had far higher levels of CO2 in the past but it currently has only 0.038%. Venus has 96.5% CO2 and Mars has 95.3% CO2.

Mr. Bill Returns To TV

A true classic from Saturday Night Live has returned to television in a new Mastercard commercial. It's nice to see he has continued acting and that Mastercard has given him this opportunity.


Testing All Week

As I noted earlier I will be undergoing routine medical testing this week. Posting may be sporadic.

Manzullo Calls On Democrats To Allow Vote On Common Sense Domestic Energy Increase

From Congressman Manzullo's house site:

Congressman Don Manzullo (R-Egan) today echoed calls for House leaders to schedule votes on bills that will allow more domestic production of oil to reduce gas prices in America and end our addiction to costly foreign oil.

More than 112 billion barrels of oil exist within our borders and along our shores – enough to power 60 million cars for 60 years – and Americans should be allowed to extract the oil as part of our plan to reduce surging gas prices in America.

Unfortunately, House Democratic leaders have refused to call for a vote any legislation that allows extraction for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR – exploration would occur on 2,000 acres of the 19 million acre refuge), along the Outer Continental Shelf off our coasts (Congress banned drilling along the OCS in 1981), and on other federal lands in the United States. Manzullo added there are now more environmentally friendly and safer offshore oil and gas extraction methods today. Case in point – not a drop of oil was spilled from oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico when Hurricane Katrina passed over them nearly three years ago.

“The ultimate plan is for alternative energy – such as electricity, hydrogen or something not yet invented – to power our vehicles in the future, and I support comprehensive efforts to spur research and development on a host of alternative and renewable fuels. But the mass commercialization of those products could be many, many years away,” Manzullo said. “In the meantime, we must take additional steps to increase the supply of oil and gas in this country so we no longer have to rely on foreign countries that often don’t have our best interests at heart. Americans simply can’t afford to keep paying these surging gasoline costs at the pumps.”

Additional drilling was already part of Congress Manzullo's 12 point gas price reduction plan but this call for a vote is very welcome. Gas prices are hurting Northern Illinois particularly hard due to our regressive state sales tax and our higher then average unemployment rate.

So that no one is confused as to which party is the part of higher gas prices, the Republican controlled Congress approved drilling in ANWR in 1995 but Democratic President Clinton vetoed that measure. Every year thereafter until control of the house was lost to the Democrats in 2006 the house approved drilling in ANWR but were blocked by Senate Democrats. The Democrats mantra that the oil won't be available for years is amazingly short sighted and foolish -- does anyone really think we won't need that oil the minute it comes out of the ground years from now? (Not to mention the fact that we could have it by now if we had just taken action!) Not everyone will be able to get a new car in 5 or 10 years!

Congressman Manzullo's opponent, Robert Abboud would put party loyalty ahead of gas prices by bashing oil companies and hanging his hopes on alternative energy that ignores the reality of life for those of us who live in the 16th! Gas is not an option!

As an aside, as I have pointed out previously Manzullo's campaign site is really sad -- even his bio isn't on the bio page. It still says to check back later -- isn't there an election coming up? He has a bio on his congressional page that should be accurate, right?

George Carlin Dies at 71

George Carlin died Sunday at 71 year of age.
Comedian George Carlin, a counter-culture hero famed for his routines about drugs, dirty words and the demise of humanity, died of heart failure at a Los Angeles-area hospital on Sunday. He was 71.

Obama's Candidacy Described In 40 Seconds

Brit Hume summarizes Obama's entire candidacy in 40 seconds on Fox News Sunday

Sunday, June 22, 2008

NY Times Identifies CIA Interrogator Against CIA Wishes

Too bad, because an otherwise fascinating story about the scramble to build a counterterror apparatus after 9/11, the merits of coercive vs. non-coercive interrogation, and the stings that nailed Abu Zubaydah and KSM is going to be submerged in a debate over their decision to publish the lead interrogator’s name against his wishes and those of CIA chief Michael Hayden. Here’s the obligatory editor’s note justifying the decision. Quote:

After discussion with agency officials and a lawyer for [the interrogrator], the newspaper declined the request, noting that [the interrogator] had never worked under cover and that others involved in the campaign against Al Qaeda have been named in news stories and books. The editors judged that the name was necessary for the credibility and completeness of the article.

The Times’ policy is to withhold the name of a news subject only very rarely, most often in the case of victims of sexual assault or intelligence officers operating under cover.

Read the piece and you’ll see that credibility and completeness have nothing to do with it. It’s not a story about him; he’s just the springboard to explore the themes I mentioned earlier.
Hot Air -- NYT reveals name of KSM’s chief interrogator — against CIA’s wishes

Hey, didn't Valarie Plame work for the CIA? This case, like the Plame case did not involve a covert agent -- but unlike the Plame case this agent was overseas within the last 5 years, which I think was of concern when determining Plame's status.

The Attempted Neutering Of McCain Continues -- Obama Plays Preemptive Race Card

Earlier I posted my explanation of how the Obama campaign neutered the Clintons through a combination of claiming Hillary's attacks were all below the belt while at the same time attacking Hillary in the very same manner. Then came the inevitable race sensitivity. The combination of these two virtually eliminated all of the Clinton's tools from their tool belt.

Previously I noted that Obama had already begun the duplicity by attacking McCain for political posturing even as Obama was political posturing himself.

Well, as expected, Obama has now preemptively played the race card.

Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama said on Friday he expects Republicans to highlight the fact that he is black as part of an effort to make voters afraid of him.

“It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy,” Obama told a fundraiser in Jacksonville, Florida. “We know what kind of campaign they’re going to run. They’re going to try to make you afraid.

“They’re going to try to make you afraid of me. He’s young and inexperienced and he’s got a funny name. And did I mention he’s black?”

He said he was also set for Republicans to say “he’s got a feisty wife,” in trying to attack his wife Michelle.

Right Wing Nut House notes the effect:

We expected it, of course. It is his greatest political weapon and he will use it again and again, shamelessly accusing the GOP of bringing up his race (even, as this proves, when they don’t) in order to deflect criticism away from he and his wife for anything they say or any associations in their past.

The press will let him get away with it because they are terrified of being accused of racism themselves.

This neutering worked against the Clintons effectively removing all of the tools from their tool belt by unilaterally changing the game (with the willing help of the MSM).

Let's hope the McCain camp have a workable tactic for this. One suggestion is for McCain to go to BOTH the places Republicans won't go and the places Obama won't go! McCain already started this with his visit to New Orleans, but this won't be enough

Daily Trek June 22, 2008

What'd I miss?

Basically a link dump of some of the stories that have backed up on my list. Let me know if you like the format.

US News has a list of 7 Ways McCain can use energy to beat Obama.

Barack Obama's foreign policy advisers said Tuesday that Osama bin Laden, if captured, should be allowed to appeal his case to U.S. civilian courts, a privilege opposed by John McCain.

Obama has decided that NAFTA isn't so bad after all! Funny, isn't that what his campaign strongly denied what one of their own told Canada he was just playing politics?

9th Circuit Court overruled a previous decision and has ruled that people can't be fired for having social security numbers that don't match as being theirs. Meanwhile the EU has strengthened their ability to hold and deport illegals.

Obama's campaign had to correct his mistaken words when he told AIPAC that Jerusalem should be the 'undivided' capitol of Israel. "Barack Obama has no grasp of the basics of diplomacy, and doesn't even realize it. That is a frightening thought about a potential commander in chief."

Removing Muslim women from behind Obama is what happens when your image is overly managed and your campaign is supported by people who are so desperate to win the White House they can taste it! Things will only get worse as the election approaches -- the wacko left wants it win after so many losses!

The GAO has ruled in Boeing's favor on issues related to the 35 billion dollar tanker contract that was originally awarded to Airbus/Lockheed partnership.

McCain called for the construction of 45 new nuclear reactors by 2030 and pledged $2 billion a year in federal funds for clean coal development in an effort to reduce dependence on foreign oil.

In an attempt to counter McCain's energy proposal another Democrat,
Maurice Hinchey,has called for Nationalizing refineries -- all the better to control every aspect of our lives!

When Obama said there wasn't much difference between his position and Bush's, after opposing the war and now opposing the war again, was he basing his policy on the waxing and waning of convicted felon and FOB (friend of Barack) Tony Rezko's business prospects with the Iraqi government?

"Obama has yet to make one important decision in his adult life."

Senate Housing Bill Requires eBay, Amazon, Google, and All Credit Card Companies to Report Transactions to the Government

China reduces oil subsidy, increasing price. Oil drops on hopes of reduced demand.

"While Michelle Obama was fixing her image on “The View,” Cindy McCain was in Vietnam and working for children with facial deformities."

The US Treasury Department froze the assets of two Venezuelan diplomats who are Hezbollah frontmen. Yet Hugo has the left wrapped around his finger.

Obama goes back on his promise to use public financing in his campaign -- what's worse is that he blamed the flip on non existent Republican 527's that he claims attacked him already and then lied by saying McCain had put campaign finance reform ahead of his political ambition. Anyone remember McCain Feingold that conservatives have railed against for years and even took to the Supreme Court!

"Along with the two mentioned at the end of my earlier post, this makes three separate lies springing from his decision to opt out of public financing."

After the Supreme Court told Mexico that US laws are all that matter they have taken their appeal of the death penalty to the UN for a Mexican National convicted of murdering a Texan!

Republicans have a history of eliminating income inequality by moving people up from the lower levels while the Democrats have repeatedly failed at redistribution of wealth. Now the effects of their programs, including Section 8 have lead to a crime wave in previously crime free neighborhoods.

Mars Phoenix Lander finds ice on Mars!

Oregon's public health care system won't pay for new expensive cancer treatment, but they will pay for assisted suicide if you want to be responsible and end it early and save your fellow citizens some money!

"Obama wants change unless, change might bring down the price of gasoline, in which case, Obama wants to change back to the status quo!"

The government has banned incandescent light bulbs after 2014, switching to Chinese CFL's but one Congressman wonders if that ban was constitutional.

When would 100 professors object to naming a new department after a recently deceased, world renowned professor? When that professor was a conservative economics professor named Milton Friedman!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

New Tool -- Bringing You The News You May Have Missed

I received my invitation to join RedLasso, an online video recording system that records live TV and radio on numerous channels nationwide. It allows you to clip and save videos you want to share with others.

With that in mind, I present my inaugural video:
Red Eye -- Like A Fat Chick

Via Redlasso

Wait Pat, Did You And Barack Have The Same History Professor?

Pat Buchanan has a new book out, Churchill, Hitler, and "The Unnecessary War": How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World, that, despite his best efforts, has been getting panned by many, including Victor Davis Hansen, whom I have a great deal of respect for as an historian.

I have not read the book yet but it is my understanding that people disagree with Buchanan's interpretation of history and his cherry picking of historical fact. Leaving out what is inconvenient to his premise, that Hitler was (well not to bring up recent wounds) "contained" and was not out to conquer the world. Christopher Hitchens hit him hard in a column earlier this week on theses issues.

It is Pat's belief that the war was made necessary by the mistaken policies of the British (specifically Churchill) and that the war was the cause of many of the terrors of that followed, not Hitler and the Nazi's.

Yesterday he published a column that was posted to entitled, Was the Holocaust Inevitable? Here is a bit of the column:

If Hitler were out to conquer the world, why did he not build a great fleet? Why did he not demand the French fleet when France surrendered?

That Hitler was a rabid anti-Semite is undeniable. "Mein Kampf" is saturated in anti-Semitism. The Nuremberg Laws confirm it. But for the six years before Britain declared war, there was no Holocaust, and for two years after the war began, there was no Holocaust.

Not until midwinter 1942 was the Wannsee Conference held, where the Final Solution was on the table.

That conference was not convened until Hitler had been halted in Russia, was at war with America and sensed doom was inevitable. Then the trains began to roll.

And why did Hitler invade Russia? This writer quotes Hitler 10 times as saying that only by knocking out Russia could he convince Britain it could not win and must end the war.

Hitchens mocks this view, invoking the Hitler-madman theory.

"Could we have a better definition of derangement and megalomania than the case of a dictator who overrules his own generals and invades Russia in wintertime ... ?"

Christopher, Hitler invaded Russia on June 22.

The Holocaust was not a cause of the war, but a consequence of the war. No war, no Holocaust.

He then finishes by correctly pointing out that Western Europe was not freed by WWII and that Stalin was worse then Hitler.

Again, I have not read the book, but when I read this column my first thought was, "wow, this guy completely missed some historical facts growing up! What, did Buchanan and Obama both go to the same school or something?" Both he and Obama have demonstrated fundamentally flawed views of historical facts.

(To my surprise I found that Columbia University WAS on both of their resumes, Pat attended Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and Barack attended Columbia University as an undergrad.)

Let me just make a couple of corrections to the two points quoted from Buchanan's column quoted above.

Why didn't Hitler build a great fleet?

In reality Hitler had actually begun doing just that with Plan-Z (German Navy -- History ):

The Z-Plan was Germanys fleet building program started shortly before World War 2.

In the mid 1930s a major discussion about a new fleet program started in Germany. There were two major opinions, what kind of program should have been chosen. One plan was focused on a large submarine fleet and a relatively small surface fleet for coast protection, this plan was preferred by the U-Boat fraction in the Kriegsmarine command. The other alternative was a mixed fleet of various surface ships and a much smaller U-Boat fleet, quite similar to the Imperial Navy in World War I or the British Royal Navy. In the end, this plan was chosen as the new fleet building program, after several modifications it was called the "Z-Plan".

According to this plan, the German Kriegsmarine should have grown to about 800 units, consisting of 13 battleships and battlecruisers, 4 aircraft carriers, 15 Panzerschiffe, 23 cruisers and 22 so called "Spähkreuzer" which were basically large destroyers. In addition to this many smaller vessels should have been build.

Those ships should have been build between 1939 and 1946, in this time, the personal of the Kriegsmarine should have been enlarged to 201.000 men and over 33 billion Reichsmark should have spend for building the new units.

When Plan-Z was implemented Hitler had promised the woefully unprepared German Navy that there would not a be war until 1945, his invasion of Poland short-circuited his own build up plans. Had Churchill waited he would have been met with a formidable fleet that would have put Hitler in a far stronger position then he was in 1939.

For comparison the Royal Navy was, in 1939, the largest naval force in the world. However the Home Water and Atlantic fleet contained just 9 Battleships, 4 Aircraft carriers, 35 cruisers, 95 Destroyers, 25 submarines and support vessels. The Navy had 200,000 men in service. Of the capital ships only 2 were built after WWI, the sea air power was limited to short range slow moving aircraft and the surface ships were unprepared for submarine warfare. While a build up was underway many of these ships were intended as replacements for the older ships and were built under the restrictions of tonnage, gun size, total fleet tonnage, and start date for new construction that was agreed to under the naval treaties post WWI. Hitler undermined these treaties during the 1930's and with the start of Plan-Z completely abandoned them.

Clearly German's planned fleet of newly designed and built vessels, unrestricted by treaty size, would have been a direct challenge to Britain had the war been put off for a few more years.

This doesn't include the Italian Navy which ranked 5th in size behind France,

Why didn't Hitler demand the French fleet?

In reality Hitler did demand that the French fleet be returned and neutralized, either scuttled or interred, "under German or Italian supervision."

With the start of war in advance of Hitlers planned naval build up there was a change in German Naval policy from that of Plan-Z as described above to the other major alternative, a large submarine fleet and a relatively small surface fleet for coastal protection. With that change in strategy Germany simply did not have the manpower available to man the fourth largest fleet in the world at that time.

However it was feared by the allies that this would leave the French fleet available in the future should Germany demand it and the main body of the French Fleet was destroyed by the British at the battle of Mers-el-Kebir. It is really not possible to know what Hitler would have done with the fleet had it been allowed to return to France.

For the six years before Britain declared war, there was no Holocaust, and for two years after the war began, there was no Holocaust.

In reality:

Hitler hesitated to eliminate Germans he considered undesirable by systematic killing. In 1935, he told Dr. Wagner he was considering a program of involuntary euthanasia and would start it in wartime. In 1938 he stopped waiting for war, deciding to use instead the cover of a health program and to keep the killing secret. Children were the first victims, as midwives and nurses were instructed to report births of defective infants (a category enlarged during the war to include “racially undesirable” ones). Thousands were killed by injection or deliberate starvation.

The killing was soon extended to adults, beginning with people in mental hospitals.


Up to 1939, about seventy thousand adults were killed. (…)

By 1940, the “euthanasia” program was a cover for killing political prisoners, slave laborers, Jews, half-Jewish children, and Gypsies.

Pat Buchanan has presented himself as some "conservative" standard bearer intent on preventing a repeat of some version of history he has constructed in his mind. Rather as his own column demonstrates he doesn't even have a basic knowledge of the subject.
Buchanan Column Via Gateway Pundit -- Nazi Tool Pat Buchanan Says Hitler Did Not Plan Holocaust

Pre-Testing Update

There are two typical phases of off medicine cycles. The first is where there is a slight degradation of cognitive and physical functions. The second is where there is an extremely steep drop off in functional ability that it reminds you of exactly why you were on meds to begin.

I can tell by the first or second day which cycle I'm in and this time is the later.

My evening consisted of turning on the wrong burner, attempting to communicate two different stories/ideas at two different times and having neither one be comprehensible, even after composing myself and restarting, not being able to hold a knife because of a loss of muscle strength, and putting dry goods in the refrigerator and refrigerated goods in the cabinet.

It is 1AM and I just finished reading the days news feeds, mainly due to comprehension and concentration but also due to exhaustion.

This is not going to be a good week, definitely cycle 2.

Anyway, I am apologizing in advance for any rambling, please hold out, it will pass.

Friday, June 20, 2008

FISA Compromise Reached

House and Senate leaders Thursday announced a new effort to overhaul U.S. wiretapping laws that appears likely to let telecommunications companies escape lawsuits over the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance program.

The measure could be brought to the floor of the House of Representatives as early as Friday, breaking a four-month impasse between the Bush administration and Congress over whether to protect companies that took part in a program critics say was illegal.


Daily Trek -- June 20, 2008 AM

What'd I miss?

Basically a link dump of some of the stories that have backed up on my list. Let me know if you like the format.

Florida Governor Charlie Crist like McCain's drilling plan. Seems there is a delicate balance between the fear of losing business because people might see an oil rig and people not being able to afford the gas to get to Florida.

Speaking of offshore drilling, 67% approve of offshore drilling while only 18% disapprove.

For comparison, "Walt Disney World is roughly fifteen times the size of the proposed drilling area inside ANWR. Think about that. Not one. Not two. Fifteen."

Barack Obama's campaign even manages to misapply the lessons of Winnie the Pooh. When your winning you are inflicting pain, not bumping your head!

In complete denial of the facts and accomplishments, Obama's campaign says the War has been fought stupidly.

The charges were dismissed against one of the two remaining Marines accused after the events in Haditia. The prosecuters have since appealed to have the charges reinstated.

Cornell Professor doubles rice yield, I guess we can up how much of the world's food production we are responsible for.

US Doctors kill cancer using billions of a person's own cloned immune cells. I have always said I would rather get last year's cutting edge cancer treatment because it is what I could afford as long as someone was paying to develop this years cutting edge treatment that I could afford next year.

This week the Democrats countered Republican attacks on Obama's apparent pre 9/11 thinking by pointing out that Rudy Giuliani had pre 9/11 thinking......prior to 9/11 that is!

Obama's comments this week are consistent with his previous debate answer where he emphasized finding out who the terrorists were in an hypothetical attack. "Never once in this answer does Obama pledge to take action against terrorists who would have killed thousands of Americans once again in terrorist attacks."

It's gay pride month! In case you wondered why there was a story about a Gay Look, Gay Brain Differences, and The Evolutionary Reason for Gays all in the past week.

Foreign firms are beating American firms back into Iraq!

Western oil companies are returning to bid on Iraqi oil contracts, including Exxon Mobil, BP, Shell, and Total!

Bush proposed the following action on oil:
  1. Increase access to the outer continental shelf (OCS)
  2. Start using oil shale
  3. Use ANWR
  4. Expand refining capacity
At the same time the Senate Republicans run interference and block Democrat proposals that would only make things worse!

Another cease fire between Gaza (Hamas) and Israel. Chances of this one lasting, slim to none!

Even the LA times says Bush didn't lie about the war! Too late, it doesn't matter, the meme is sold. Consolidation prize, history books will have it right.

That's it for now. I have quite a bit more for one later today/tomorrow.

This format was carried over from my LifeTrek blog and it did get some compliments because it is quick and concise. Let me know if you like it and I will make it a regular.

Obama Either Makes It Up As He Goes Or He Has Serious Issues With Interpreting Reality

This is how Barack Obama interpreted his conversation with the Iraqi Foreign Minister:
At a press availability in Michigan, I asked Obama if Zebari had expressed any concern to him that his plans to withdrawal U.S. troops as president would undo any security advances.

"No, he did not express that," Obama said. "He did emphasize his belief that we've made real progress and I think was eager to see political accommodations between the factions follow up in the wake of this progress.

…And so my sense is that we should be able to execute a withdrawal and set a timeframe - a timetable that continues to allow US forces to support Iraqi forces in going after terrorists, that continues to train the Iraqi police and military as long as we're not training militias that are turning on each other.

This is how the Iraqi Foreign Minister interpreted the very same conversation:
Mr. Zebari said he told Mr. Obama that "Iraq is not an island." In other words, an American withdrawal that destabilized the country would also roil the region around it and embolden U.S. adversaries such as al-Qaeda and Iran. "We have a deadly enemy," Mr. Zebari said. "When he sees that you commit yourself to a certain timetable, he will use this to increase pressure and attacks, to make it look as though he is forcing you out. We have many actors who would love to take advantage of that opportunity." Mr. Zebari says he believes U.S. forces can and should be drawn down. His point is that reductions should be made gradually, as the Iraqi army becomes stronger.

The foreign minister said "my message" to Mr. Obama "was very clear. . . . Really, we are making progress. I hope any actions you will take will not endanger this progress." He said he was reassured by the candidate's response, which caused him to think that Mr. Obama might not differ all that much from Mr. McCain.

So lets see, not only Does Senator Obama get history wrong, his campaign gets lessons of Winnie the Pooh wrong, but he can't even properly relay the contents of a conversation with an important ally.

Obama is a one man game of Telephone!

He either makes it up as he goes to fit his current message, or he has serious issues with his interpretation of reality.
Thanks to Ace

Future Rambling Possibility

All next week I will be undergoing regular medical testing, nothing I'm not used to, however in order to get proper readings I have had to stop taking most of my medications as of yesterday.

Just a warning as in case the rambling increases.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Morning Pause -- V V Tired

More later today -- I have a ton that I am going to put in a couple daily treks.

Osama Free Vs Free And Able To Attack The US

Osama bin Laden is still free because of Republican "failed strategies." Perhaps. But that is no different than saying he was both free and able to attack the United States in 1996, 1998, 2000 and 2001 because of Democatic "failed strategies."

Tigerhawk -- The partisan theory of Osama bin Laden's freedom

Obama, Afghanistan, And Another Failed History Lesson

I really can't believe we have to go through this again but here we go.

History does not support Barack Obama and the Democrats criticism of Bush's handling of the Afghan front in the War on Terror.

Obama's plan of redeploying tens of thousands of additional troops from Iraq to Afghanistan to find one man and to quell an insurgent Taliban has been tried and failed miserably for the two Empires that tired that same strategy in the last couple of centuries. As a matter of fact the Soviet Afghan policy helped defeat the Soviet Union and the British Empire could never get a handle on the nation.

That is why the Bush administration's handling of the War on Terror has been so novel and successful so far -- they have managed to do what couldn't be done.

I have yet to see a single policy proposal by Senator Obama, whether it be domestic policy, foreign policy, or the conduct of the War on Terror that hasn't been tried and shown to be historically unworkable. But somehow Obama clings to them as if he can magically transform historically failed (and in some cases disastrously so) policies into modern day successes.

That is a common thread of the modern Democrat. The messianic belief that the same policies that have never worked anyplace and every time they have been tired can somehow be made to work now just because this time Barack Obama is the one implementing them.

Well, it is the policies that are flawed it doesn't matter who carries them out. Trumpeting them as change is either a fraud or a fundamental misunderstanding of history.

Is there no Democrat in politics today with a fundamental knowledge of history that can lend a hand to their standard bearer, for his and all of our sakes?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

AP Update -- Foolishly Destroying A Brand

And you thought their PR on this subject couldn’t get any worse. Must be nice to have an exemption from the same federal fair use statute every other content provider in America is governed by.

The AP’s disharmony with bloggers may have only just begun, as the alternative it’s now offering to being served with takedown notices involves paying an up-front sum for excerpting online articles — as few as five words…

The pricing scale for excerpting AP content begins at $12.50 for 5-25 words and goes as high as $100 for 251 words and up. Nonprofit organizations and educational institutions enjoy a discounted rate.

This scale is likely only a temporary solution, as it raises a truckload of questions. For instance: Suppose a news source holds a press conference, and makes a statement to several attendees including an AP correspondent. Does the citation of that quote count as an excerpt of an AP story? What if Reuters cited the same quote? Or worse, what if Reuters cited the quote differently, and a blogger noticed the difference and excerpted both for comparison? If the AP citation turned out to be in error, would the blogger still owe?

Bloggers like Ace are now summarizing and refusing to link to news they can't find elsewhere.
Hot Air -- AP wants $2.50 a word to excerpt its stories now!

Could GM Be Ahead For Once?

Bob Lutz has come out and said it again: "I would say there's almost no reasonable doubt in our minds anymore that this is going to work." And that isn't just that the Chevy Volt will work -- it's that it will work on time and as promised. In spite of the difficulties GM has had getting Volt technology up-to-speed within its timeframes, the man upstairs is apparently as confident as ever.

The Volt concept car was beautiful and the idea even better, but sometimes it seems GM has good ideas but falls behind on the implementation. I recall hearing first about the concept of a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle from GM but Honda now has one in production while GM has a small fleet in test homes. But I could be wrong on that I guess.

Autoblog -- Bob Lutz on Volt: "no reasonable doubt... this is going to work"

The Subprime Six

1. Senator Chris Dodd-(D-Conn.)
2. Kent Conrad (D-ND.)
3. Alphonso Jackson (R-HUD Secretary)
4. Donna Shalala-(D-HHS Secretary)
5. Richard Holbrooke (D-ASecretary of State)(and future Sec. State?)
6. James Johnson (D-Obama Veep Selection)

Allegedly receiving special treatment, or at least VIP treatment for loans.

Obama Blames GOP Tactics For Failure To Catch Osama

Obama Blames GOP Tactics For Failure To Catch Osama according to an AP article.

Couple things:

  • Osama is not the goal in the War on Terror -- that is a fallacy common among those who prefer using law enforcement to imprison terrorists rather then take the fight to them (which is a tactic that has worked so far).
  • Iraq was not a distraction. Iraq was a major front in the War on Terror, one of many.
  • It took 5 years to catch Eric Rudolph and he was here in America and everyone was looking for him!
  • It took 18 years to catch the Unabomber, again here in America and as Obama is fond to point out about Osama he too continued to send messages to the media up just a few months before caught.
I really have to wonder if all of Obama's bluster is pure politics because it would really be hard to believe he missed or misinterpreted as much history as he seems to have.

Democrats Use Any Excuss To Block Judicial Appointments

The eight year campaign by Senate Democrats to prevent President Bush's judicial nominees from receiving up-or-down votes has been characterized by nearly every form of intellectual and factual dishonesty imaginable. At this late date, one wouldn't have expected any recently developed obstructionist arguments to stand out for cynicism.

Nonetheless, as this Examiner editorial notes, my two Senators (Barbara Mikulski and Benjamin Cardin) seem to have broken new ground.

These two are blocking a vote on Rod Rosenstein's nomination to the Circuit Court because he is doing too good a job as U.S. Attorney. Any excuse will do for the current Democratic Congress.
Powerline -- Maryland's Democratic Senators Embarrass Themselves

The Insanity Of The Coming Obama 'Criminal Justice' War

Gitmo Lawyers Say Detainee Was Not Read His Rights-- Therefore He Must Be Set Free

The guy threw a grenade that blew up an American soldier, was taped on a video messing with weapons and planting landmines.

This is what the Supremes have wrought.

Is this the insanity of the coming Obama 'criminal justice' war?
Gateway Pundit -- Gitmo Lawyers Say Detainee Was Not Read His Rights-- Therefore He Must Be Set Free

Victory For Oil Could Be Victory For Republicans

With oil prices shaping up as the dominant issue of this campaign season, evidence is growing that Republicans can win in November if they get behind a program of aggressive energy development. Our friend Michele Bachmann showed how it's done yesterday, with a proposal that she (and the House Republicans) estimate could cut gas prices in half at the pump:

Gas prices could be slashed in half if Congress would open up the country's Arctic slope, deep-sea reserves and oil shale fields for exploration and drilling, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann said Monday. ***

The plan, contained in a half-dozen bills that Bachmann has cosponsored, also includes opening new oil refineries (three of them at closed military bases) and incentives to invest in alternative energy sources such as wind, nuclear energy and clean coal-to-liquid technology.

The paper contacted Bachmann's Democratic opponent for a comment; it's striking how lame and whiny his response was. In truth, though, it's about as good as the Democrats are going to do.

Poll data indicate that the American people are anxious to start drilling. This Rasmussen survey, which came out today, says that by an overwhelming 67% to 18% margin, respondents favor offshore drilling. Even a plurality of liberals are in favor. Other poll data yield the same conclusions.

The Democrats are boxed in between the rock of environmental extremism and the hard place of hate for companies that make money, so they will be endlessly wrong-footed on the issue.

Powerline -- The Path To Victory

Representative Donald Manzullo should get behind this and get this out to the local press. As the election approaches he has got to get far more specific then his 12 point plan released earlier this year. This bill would do that!

While Don's challenger Robert Abboud has a resume that gives him some credibility on this issue his proposal is nothing but the Democratic Party boilerplate that is really behind the eight ball! Tax oil producers, get off oil, but no action today.

Today there is no replacement for oil and the failure to tap our resources while replacements are developed is foolish.

Oh, and Manzullo really needs to do some work on his campaign web site. It is completely worthless. I found Abboud's energy policy with one click -- I have been looking at Manzullo's for 3 months now and not only hasn't it changed, his policy positions are not easy to find. They should be linked on the front page! The news section is worthless. This is the 21'st century and Abboud net presence is impressive while Manzullo's is simplistic and non-informative.


Why Are the Democrats still in primary mode?

Why Are the Democrats still in primary mode?

Obama and the Democrats are continuing to hit the, "evil oil companies," mantra and promising to tax the heck out of them. But you have to wonder why they can't see that, besides hurting every American they seem to be politically tone deaf.

With polls overwhelmingly favoring domestic control of our energy future domestically as well as showing that the majority of Americans do NOT blame the oil companies for the high gas prices you have to wonder why Obama and the Democrats are so far off the mark on this issue.

Are the Democrats so afraid of the eco-wacko's in their base that they can't do what is right for the country or do they honestly believe gas above $5 is what is right for America, including the slower economic growth and higher food prices that are sure to follow.

While I have continued to strongly encourage domestic drilling even I understand, as most Americans do, that it isn't a cure-all. We have to diversify our energy sources, but Americans also know that oil will be a major source of energy for years to come. The Democrats argument that drilling is not a solution for today is the same wrong headed policy that got us where we are today. It is the same non-answer they have given us for 30 years now and it has been a foolish policy.

Americans are saying, "Do Something!" Taxing Americans and American companies is not doing something.
(Again I got half way into this one and lost complete concentration, sorry if it rambles)

Bush To Join McCain In Call For Offshore Oil Exploration

President George W. Bush will call on Congress to lift the ban on offshore drilling tomorrow!
--Via FOX News.

Hat Tip -- Gateway Pundit

$2 Billion In US Made Auto Parts And Cars For Sale In China Soon

General Motors Corp. and Ford Motor Co. will send nearly $2 billion worth of vehicles, parts and machinery to China during the next few years, part of a package of 30 deals between American businesses and China announced Monday before trade talks.

DKK -- GM, Ford to send $2 billion in parts, vehicles to China

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Gore Still An Energy Hog -- 10% Increase, Now Equals 232 Homes!

In the year since Al Gore took steps to make his home more energy-efficient, the former Vice President’s home energy use surged more than 10%, according to the Tennessee Center for Policy Research.”A man’s commitment to his beliefs is best measured by what he does behind the closed doors of his own home,” said Drew Johnson, President of the Tennessee Center for Policy Research. “Al Gore is a hypocrite and a fraud when it comes to his commitment to the environment, judging by his home energy consumption.”

In the past year, Gore’s home burned through 213,210 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity, enough to power 232 average American households for a month.


Watts Up With That -- Giant Sucking Sound

McCain Announced Support For Outer Continental Shelf Drilling -- Congress Still Prefers High Gas Prices

John McCain and Barack Obama both made news today. McCain announced his support for lifting the moratorium on Outer Continental Shelf drilling.

UPDATE: When it comes to drilling, we have a ways to go to catch up with the Brazilians. Fausta notes another mammoth Brazilian offshore strike.

Personally, I'd like to see the United States remain the number one economic power in the Western Hemisphere, but this is not foreordained. If Brazil's Congress is smarter than ours, as it certainly is at the moment, we are at a huge disadvantage.

Power Line -- Two Small Steps Forward

Where's Obama's Bounce?

Obama: Still no bounce


In Spite Of Obama;s Fabled Judgment™ -- The Surge worked

Democratic Sen. Barack Obama’s forced to admit that he was wrong about Iraq — and Republican Sen. John McCain was right.

Obama told reporters that he spoke on the phone with Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar zebari.

“I emphasized to him how encouraged I was by the reductions in violence in Iraq but also insisted that it is important for us to begin the process of withdrawing U.S. troops, making it clear that we have no interest in permanent bases in Iraq,” Obama said.

In other words the Surge worked.

Had we listened to Obama, the troops would have been home 3 months ago and there would have been a bloodbath that would make the fall of Saigon look like kindergarten.

There’s your change.

Your chump change.


Don Surber -- The Surge Worked

Obama, Governor Rod, Rezko, And Iraqi Criminal/Insurgent Supporter

Nibraz Kazimi at the Talisman Gate has this latest awful news for the Obama Campaign.
The Messiah better work a miracle and keep this one out of the mainstream media's hands.
Talsiman Gate reported:

Ayham Alsammarae, Iraq’s slimy ex-Minister of Electricity under the Bremer and Allawi administrations, who had escaped from an Iraqi prison by hiring an American security company to break him out back in December 2006, has resurfaced in the Jordanian capital Amman where he gave a press conference today saying, among other things, that he hoped that the insurgency in Iraq “would continue [against U.S. occupation] and avenges the Iraqi people.”

Alsammarae, an Iraqi-American Chicagoan, added during remarks carried by Radio Sawa (Arabic link) that he had contributed the maximum allowable of $2,300 to Barack Obama’s campaign.

But there’s another Obama link to Alsammarae: while serving as electricity minister Alsammarae had been involved in brokering deals in the Iraqi electricity sector for Antoin Rezko, Obama’s long-term friend and patron. Rezko is the Syrian-American hustler who was convicted of fraud in an Illinois court on the day that Obama secured the Democratic nomination.
There is much more at Talisman Gate.
BIG--- UPDATE: Alsammarae was seen partying at the Rezko residence with Illinois Democratic Governor Blagojevich and Rezko buddy Nadhmi Auchi, via Illinoize in 2004:

Gateway Pundit -- Hope?... Obama Ex-con Supporter & Rezko Buddy Wants US Troops Dead ...BIG UPDATE!!

Success -- Troop Reduction -- Media Questions Public

Meanwhile, the AP not only notes significant progress in Iraq, but actually (get this) kinda-sorta wonders why the public hasn't taken note of it.

Signs are emerging that Iraq has reached a turning point. Violence is down, armed extremists are in disarray, government confidence is rising and sectarian communities are gearing up for a battle at the polls rather than slaughter in the streets.

Those positive signs are attracting little attention in the United States, where the war-weary public is focused on the American presidential contest and skeptical of talk of success after so many years of unfounded optimism by the war's supporters.

That's rich. The MSM has reduced its coverage of the war by ninety-two percent over the past year, conveniently since the US has been winning the war, and AP blames the lack of public attention on the public itself.

Ace Of Spades HQ -- Bush Announces Over-the-Horizon Redeployment of 34,000 Troops Out Of Iraq

Bush Triumphant In Europe

Real leaders know George Walker Bush is great.

The sniping from the left aside, Bush is one of the best presidents ever.

His tour of Europe shows that.

He stood up to terrorism and made the world safer.

Other world leaders know this. They appreciate the leadership that America again is showing the free world.

See the post by Don Surber for the list of honors and accomplishments, he continues:

History will record that the American Left which rooted for defeat in Iraq was wrong, wrong, wrong.

The world is safer because of George Bush and not just the false sense of security that it pretended it had in the 9/10 world.

That was why he was re-elected by 3 million people — one of the largest victories in American history. His 62 million votes were 15 million more than Bill Clinton ever received.

n the 9/12 world, Bush risked his political career to protect America and the free world.

Europe thanks him.


Don Surber -- Peer Review

Seek And Ye Shall Find -- Brazil Discovers Another New Oil Field

The Brazilians must have been reading Luke 11:9

Luke 11:9 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.

Knock, knock:
BG, Petrobras Find More Oil in Brazil's Santos Basin BG Group Plc, the U.K.'s third-largest oil and gas company, and Petroleo Brasileiro SA made a second discovery in Brazil's Santos Basin.

The Guara exploration well struck oil in the BM-S-9 concession area, according to the partners, which also include Repsol YPF SA. That's in the same block as the Carioca discovery in September, which Brazil's petroleum regulator said may contain as many as 33 billion barrels of oil.
Fausta's Blog

Iran Moves To Safeguard $75 Billion From Sanctions

Iran has withdrawn around $75 billion from Europe to prevent the assets from being blocked under threatened new sanctions over Tehran's disputed nuclear ambitions, an Iranian weekly said.

Western powers are warning the Islamic Republic of more punitive measures if it rejects an incentives offer and presses on with sensitive nuclear work, but the world's fourth-largest oil exporter is showing no sign of backing down.

"Part of Iran's assets in European banks have been converted to gold and shares and another part has been transferred to Asian banks," Mohsen Talaie, deputy foreign minister in charge of economic affairs, was quoted as saying.



The Associated Press Bites The Hand That Feeds Them

The stories over the weekend were bad enough - the Associated Press, with a long history of suing over quotations from their articles, went after Drudge Retort for having the audacity to link to their stories along with short quotations via reader submissions. Drudge Retort is doing nothing different than what Digg, TechMeme, Mixx and dozens of other sites do, and frankly the fact that they are being linked to should be considered a favor.

After heavy criticism over the last few days, the A.P. is in damage control mode, says the NYTimes, and retreating from their earlier position. But from what I read, they’re just pushing their case further.

They do not want people quoting their stories, despite the fact that such activity very clearly falls within the fair use exception to copyright law. They claim that the activity is an infringement.

Many blogs are not linking to AP stories, preferring to link to the original source or another news service such as AFP or Reuters.

This is an interesting test of the business model the AP and other traditional media outlets have set up. I have no idea how they think they can get around fair use, but even more curious is how they think they are going to get around making money via hits.

As Tech central continued:
The A.P. doesn’t get to make it’s own rules around how its content is used, if those rules are stricter than the law allows. So even thought they say they are making these new guidelines in the spirit of cooperation, it’s clear that, like the RIAA and MPAA, they are trying to claw their way to a set of property rights that don’t exist today and that they are not legally entitled to. And like the RIAA and MPAA, this is done to protect a dying business model - paid content.

So here’s our new policy on A.P. stories: they don’t exist. We don’t see them, we don’t quote them, we don’t link to them. They’re banned until they abandon this new strategy, and I encourage others to do the same until they back down from these ridiculous attempts to stop the spread of information around the Internet.


Tech Central --Here's Our New Policy On A.P. stories: They're Banned

Monday, June 16, 2008

Weekly Update RRStar Stats June 16, 2008

The content of the RRStar (online Rockford Register Star) blogs have an overwhelmingly liberal slant in both content, links, and quantity.

I established this blog in an attempt to provide Rockford with political balance and to demonstrate the type and quality of content the RRStar could offer to its readers.

Checking the stats of their political blogs it is clear that they need more of a balanced portfolio of political blogs.

Again, here are the political blogs available at the RRStar:

  • Applesauce is a prolific far left blog that addresses national issues. The content is mainly composed of links to the left wing of the blogosphere along with a short quips, photo, and video content. Occasionally there are longer posts that include opinions on the items linked. Comments are quickly answered, often with another quip.
  • In Chambers is a blog that covers Illinois state politics. It appears to be right of center but that could be the result of its adversarial nature to the current state administration. There is no real interaction in the comments.
  • Sweeny Report is a blog written by the Political Editor of the Register Star. Postings are sporadic, concentrating on local, state and national issues and are mainly short thoughts on events with few links.
  • Why We Vote is a group blog consisting of the thoughts of the members of the Register Star's voters opinion panel. The posts are mostly left of center (including those from the independents to date). The conservative member who was posting, sadly, passed away recently.

  • The Stats for June 1, 2008 through June 15, 2008:

    * Applesauce 29 posts with 27 out links 5 YouTube.
    * In Chambers 4 posts with 7 out links 0 YouTube.
    * Sweeny Report 3 posts with 0 out links 0 YouTube.
    * Why We Vote 0 posts (0 left, 0 right, 0 center) 0 out links 0 YouTube.

    Totals since I started counting March 27, 2008 through June 15, 2008:

    * Applesauce 290 posts with 373 out links 71 YouTube.
    * In Chambers 47 posts with 287 out links 1 YouTube.
    * Sweeny Report 64 posts with 20 out links 1 YouTube.
    * Why We Vote 32 posts (28 left, 1 right, 4 center) 1 out links 0 YouTube.

    If your interested in balance in the RRStar blogs keep coming back and let the RRStar know.

    Misunderstanding And Empowering Speculation -- We CAN Drill Our Way Out

    Over the past few weeks I have heard an increasing meme that speculation is what has driven up the price of oil.

    While it is true a portion of the price increase has been strictly profit driven, "speculators," the majority of the speculation is warranted by the supply and demand in the markets. The profit driven speculation is only feasible because of the artificial restrictions we have placed on oil supplies.

    In the current oil market unreasonable speculation is simply a symptom of the problem. That problem being the lack of a stable supply of crude oil.

    Current oil production levels are virtually identical to demand with very little excess capacity available in the event of an interruption. Political instability, weather hazards, refinery breakdowns, terror attacks, kidnapping/attacks on oil platforms and hostage taking, and other interruptions in production increase the risk that oil supply will not be able to meet the demand in the future.

    That is where the market comes in. If you are a large consumer of oil you purchase futures contracts, offering to buy oil in the future, at a set price that the seller has to deliver at that price -- no matter what interruptions occur between now and then. In order to make a profit traders have to build in a premium in the cost of oil to offset that ever increasing risk.

    Increasing domestic production -- Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less -- would greatly reduce much of the speculation by mitigating many of the uncertainties. From the list above, if you developed domestic supply in various regions of the US (Both coasts, Rocky Mountains, Alaska, Plains) you would mitigate the major effects of weather, political instability, terror attacks, attacks on platforms, and many other interruptions because there would be additional supplies from the remaining stable US regions. Increasing refining capacity would help mitigate the effects of refinery breakdowns.

    This fundamental misunderstanding of the oil markets and the refusal of the Democrats to allow increased energy production has empowered the speculators in ways not seen since the markets began trading, resulting in a direct increase in the price of gasoline. The Democrat's tactic of deflecting blame to the oil companies only serves to increase the speculation as additional restrictions and increased taxes on domestic oil producers historically leads to reduced domestic production. (Interestingly as the polls show less people blame the oil companies the debate is shifting to speculators!)

    Pelosi, Reid, and crew keep repeating that we can't drill our way out of this, but they are just as wrong and misinformed about this as they were 14 months ago when Reid declared the surge a failure.

    Have You Seen The Price Of Arugula?

    It's Not Race, It's Arugula
    Obama's real electoral challenge.

    Weekly Standard -- Noemie Emery

    Che And Obama -- What A Couple!

    So, you have to love the photograph of the liberal Ohio judge who declared the death penalty as administered in that state unconstitutional. Is he a Communist who happens to support Barack Obama in the absence of actual Communists, or an Obama liberal who sees nothing wrong in promoting a Communist murderer? It is difficult to know which. The question is, why do we keep seeing Obama supporters who revere Che Guevara?

    Tigerhawk -- Background Noise

    Why Are Conservatives Nicer More Generous?

    Don't listen to the liberals - Right-wingers really are nicer people, latest research shows

    George Orwell once wrote that politics was closely related to social identity. 'One sometimes gets the impression,' he wrote in The Road To Wigan Pier, 'that the mere words socialism and communism draw towards them with magnetic force every fruit-juice drinker, nudist, sandal-wearer, sex-maniac, Quaker, nature-cure quack, pacifist and feminist in England'.

    Orwell was making an observation. But today a whole body of academic research shows he was correct: your politics influence the manner in which you live your life. And the news is not so good for those on the political Left.

    There is plenty of data that shows that Right-wingers are happier, more generous to charities, less likely to commit suicide - and even hug their children more than those on the Left.


    The culprit here is not those on the Left who embrace progressive ideas but the ideas themselves.

    As John Maynard Keynes reminds us: 'The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and wrong, are more powerful than commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else.' Or, as the American theorist Richard Weaver once declared: 'Ideas have consequences.'

    And it seems that today modern progressive ideas can often bring out the worst in people.

    Read all the studies and examples.


    The Mail Online

    Internet Radio Fight -- Manzullo Pushes Solution

    The creator of the nation’s largest Internet radio station, Pandora, visited with Congressman Don Manzullo this week to thank him and discuss the next steps in the fight to save online music from its impending demise.

    Tim Westergren, who launched the free Internet radio station in 2005 and now boasts more than 11 million listeners, came to Manzullo’s office earlier this week to discuss the importance of the Internet Radio Equality Act (HR 2060), which Manzullo and Rep. Jay Inslee (D-WA) introduced last year. The bill, which maintains the strong bipartisan support of 149 cosponsors, would vacate a Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) decision last year to triple royalty rates Internet radio stations must pay and instead put the rates at parity with satellite and cable radio.


    Representative Don Manzullo

    I wrote about this here on my LifeTrek blog when the bill was first introduced.


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