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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Whoda Thunk It

For some reason, nationalizing industries and price controls didn't work....again.

Robbers target food delivery trucks in shortage-hit Venezuela

How many times are the central planners, Progressives, Socialists/Communists, going to try this before they realize it just won't work? Apparently, one more time.

President Nicolas Maduro blames the scarcities on an "economic war" waged by right-wing foes trying to topple his socialist government. This week, he announced yet another crackdown on hoarders and contrabandists who sell price-fixed goods in Colombia for a tidy profit.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Almost...

Another asteroid is going to barely miss us on Monday. Damn the luck.

Hololens

The Oculus Rift and other virtual reality projects interest me not in the least. That tech has been tried several times and it's a dead end. Anything that completely obstructs your vision is by definition non-viable as a human interface device. The kiddies are all excited about it because they've not had first hand experience with head-mounted VR. Trust me, kids: it will fail. Again.

Augmented reality, however, is intriguing. That's because it enhances your vision rather than obstructing it. Microsoft is planning to release the Hololens later this year, synchronous with Windows 10. The potential is huge: design, gaming, hobbies, productivity... the number of possible applications is virtually unlimited -- pun intended. But don't take my word for it, just watch the promotional video.



Website

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Keep It Local

John Derbyshire comments on Obama's latest idiocy:

Hence the President’s proposal to make community college “as free and universal as high school.” He didn’t precisely say it should be compulsory, but you know that’s the way he’d like to see us headed.

The assumption here is that everyone is just as hungry for education as elite grinds like Barack Obama, who was 22 before he finished his main schooling, then later logged another three years at Harvard Law. Millions of proles have their noses pressed to the community college windows, desperate to get in, but they can’t afford it!

That is just not true... For one thing, community college is dirt cheap. Anyone who is up to a little odd-jobbing or burger-flipping can easily afford it. For anyone who can prove even mild financial hardship, the colleges are already free.

For another thing, great numbers of people—probably a majority—hate the idea of education continuing after high school. That is a very shocking thought to the elite grinds, perhaps to the degree of them not being able to think it at all.


While I agree with Derb, I think he's only grazing the edge of the progressives' real goal in this whole community college idea. I attended both community college and university, as did several of the contributors to this blog. We can all tell you with certainty that while the university was staffed with all of the lefties and lib-progs and other blinkered fools you'd expect, the junior college was the opposite. Most of the instructors and professors were technical people, many of them moonlighting from positions in industry and business. Even the full-time liberal arts professors were often of a decidedly right-of-center political temperament.

In short, community colleges are all about creating skilled and educated workers, not shoveling political propaganda at outrageous prices.

I submit that the proggies in D.C. have finally taken notice of this fact. They have managed to garner absolute oversight of the curriculum in the universities and in the public schools. It has only recently come to their attention, however, that there is a gap in their iron-fisted control of education in America, and they ain't one bit happy about it.

Do not be fooled by the "everybody benefits" argument. Progressives are incapable of proposing anything that doesn't play directly into their agenda. These people's visions of Utopia are only a half-step removed from the likes of Lenin and Castro. Giving the federal government financial leverage in private junior colleges is a really, really bad idea for the future of this country.

Undercover



"I don't get it, Fred. They haven't said a word in three days. It's like they know we're here or something."

"I know... Weird. I mean, it's not like we've got a sign painted on us that says "FBI" or anything!"

"Ha! Now THAT would be stupid!"

Thursday Tunes

All Along the Watchtower interpreted for gayageum, kind of a Korean zither. Perhaps the best part is that you get to watch a pretty girl perform it rather than old, wrinkled, tone-deaf Bob Dylan.




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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

You are not well...

Psychiatrists now say non-conformity is a mental illness: only the sheeple are 'sane'


CONFORM

OBEY

FREEDOM IS SLAVERY



Source and Source


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Hat-tip to Vizigoth

Chancy

No sitting down on the job:

Canadian researchers found that prolonged daily sitting was linked to significantly higher odds of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and dying.


So... you can reduce your chances of death by not sitting as much. And here I thought the universal chance of dying was 100%, but what do I know? Maybe it's a Canadian thing, eh?

A Failure of Will

Another misfire by the SCOTUS:

An Arkansas policy prohibiting inmates from having beards violated the religious rights of a prisoner who had wanted to grow one in accordance with his Muslim beliefs, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday.


The fact that prisoners have more "rights" than recruits in basic training is a sure sign that our society is doomed. There's such a thing as too much of a good thing, and all this hand-wringing over the "rights" of prisoners is an excellent example. Our concerns for imprisoned felons should consist of their remaining healthy enough to break rocks for the entire span of their sentence. Everything else is irrelevant.

Keynes at Harvard

Excerpted from chapter one of Keynes at Harvard by Zygmund Dobbs:

"Investigation discloses that the philosophy responsible for the bulk of our university thinking does not bear the label of Marxism or Communism; it is instead propounded as something called Keynesism. Keynesism is so-called after John Maynard Keynes, British economist, (1883-1946). His teachings are today considered an ideological base for British and American Socialists.

"To get at the nub of the matter, one must trace back the evolution of such thinking, starting with the undergraduates and working back to the source of the infection. Using as a basis only factual material, this study penetrated the labyrinths of a socialist-communist-fascist underworld. The term underworld has been found to be the most descriptive of this melange.

"It is well known that in the criminal underworld many divergent elements, some of which fight each other to the death, find a unity in their general opposition to regularly constituted authority. In the general political underworld of socialist-communist and fascist movements, totalitarians may kill, maim and enslave one another without mercy but a hatred of free enterprise capitalism represents a common faith and gives them a common denominator.

"No matter what phase of left-wing infiltration we study, be it in government, in information media, in foundations, in labor unions, or whether we deal with Keynesian socialism, neo-Marxian socialism or with Bolshevik communism, the tracks lead inevitably to Harvard University. This does not mean that Harvard has a monopoly of the leftist host. The roots of left-wing ideology have penetrated deep into most of the large universities and colleges of America. However, Harvard has led all the rest in spawning exponents of the three brands of leftism mentioned above. The Harvard Graduate School has flooded the whole academic world with teachers trained in such leftist thinking."


Those words were written in 1969; how much worse has it become today? The Leftists have been trying their damnedest to take over this country for at least fifty years.

Like the late Tom Clancy, I'm pretty well convinced that this is not by accident or even social convergence, but rather is the result of a deliberate attack launched by the Soviets during the early years of the Cold War. It may even go back previous to World War II, but it really started to bear its rotten fruit in the 1960s, fronted by the willing dupes of the so-called "counterculture" movement. Today, the grandchildren of those dupes -- products of our nearly worthless public education system -- continue their uninformed attacks on the very concepts which built the greatest nation in human history.

Unfortunately, human nature is on the side of the neo-socialists: sloth and selfishness are easy sells to the masses. On offer from capitalism are hard work and deferred gratification, with promise of reward equal only to the effort which you put into your own life. Given the choice, the great mass of humanity will always choose to set on its collective haunches and eat scraps rather than risk their lives hunting for fresh meat. Marx knew this; so did Lenin. And Keynes. And pretty well every politician in the modern Democrat party...

You can read the entire book online here.


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Hat-tip to Vizigoth

Stealin'

China has strenuously denied it stole designs for America's next generation fighter jet, calling the accusations "baseless."

Well of course they deny it. And of course they stole it. All you have to do is look at the bloody thing to see that it's a spitting image of fifth generation American fighter planes.

The Soviets spent untold amounts of money infiltrating private aerospace firms to steal the plans for American fighters during the Cold War, and the Chinese are doing it in the New Cold War. Hell, if the Chinese had anything worth stealing, we'd be doing it to them.

That's how espionage works. Nobody except naive journalists and Democrat college kids would actually expect them to admit to it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Rabbiting

One of the more chortle-worthy aspects of Catholicism is watching celibate priests sagely offering advice on sex and marriage:

Pope Francis said Monday that the Catholic Church's ban on contraception doesn't mean that couples should have as many children as possible. "Some people think that -- excuse my expression here -- that in order to be good Catholics we have to be like rabbits," the pontiff told reporters aboard the papal plane on Monday.

Instead, Pope Francis advocated the natural family planning method, in which couples avoid sexual intercourse during the woman's peak fertility periods.


Or you could just lift the ridiculous ban on contraceptives, which was created so that Catholics would breed like rabbits in order to increase the power base of the Church. Tell me, priest: what's the "peak fertility period" on adolescent altar boys?

Oh dear... I said that out loud didn't I? How rude of me.

Yup

Monday, January 19, 2015

A Barrel Full of Morons

Methinks thou doth protest too much:

Officials from the Massachusetts State Police and Easton Fire Department are reporting that an ambulance responding to violent car accident was blocked from traveling to a Boston hospital on Thursday.

Massachusetts State Police Superintendent Timothy P. Alben told reporters during a press conference that an Easton ambulance carrying car crash victims in serious condition had to be diverted to a lower-level hospital because of the protests.

About 11 people were arrested by police for blocking I-93 north near East Milton Square on Thursday as part of an action by the #BlackLivesMatter protest movement. The protesters blocked traffic by locking themselves together with the help of concrete filled barrel they transported to the site with a rented box truck.





Black lives may matter, but those of morons do not. Just get a tow truck out there to pick up the concrete-filled barrels -- with stupid hipsters still attached -- and drop them into the nearest river. Much less paperwork than arresting them: "Barrel fell into river. No sign of protestor."

Problem solved and everybody's happier -- including, I should think, the nebulous "black lives" for whom these pasty-white lion snacks are supposedly protesting. I certainly wouldn't want them representing me, nor can I imagine any sentient creature desiring such. #ConcreteDontFloat


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RadShack

Good old Radio Shack is on the ropes, with a bankruptcy filing imminent. The company has re-invented themselves on several occasions, and was in fact one of the driving forces behind the personal computer revolution of the late 70s and early 80s. So what went wrong? Why are they face down in the economic mud?

That's easy to answer, actually. This went wrong:

Just nine years ago, RadioShack enthusiastically opened its new $200 million headquarters, a complex of 900,000 square feet situated majestically on 38 acres on the banks of the Trinity River. With a 500-seat cafe, an open floor plan and a fitness center, it was supposed to help propel the chain to greater entrepreneurial heights.


A bloated corporate campus staffed by prancing HR drones, Deputy Vice Presidents of Creating Useless Paperwork, and more administrative assistants than you can shake a stick at is NOT "entrepreneurial heights," it's corporatism at its worst. I am sometimes amazed by how easily otherwise successful companies can fall into the tar pit of bureaucratic overburden. When the people who bring the money in the door are marginalized in favor of the non-producers in a corporate hierarchy, failure is inevitable.

Maybe Radio Shack can restructure out of the bankruptcy. If they can get rid of all the corporate flotsam there might still be time to re-invent themselves yet again. They were a fixture in every mall when I was growing up and I'd hate to see them disappear forever.

On Acid

Sigh.

A recent survey by the Oklahoma State University Department of Agricultural Economics finds that over 80 percent of Americans support “mandatory labels on foods containing DNA”


Just can't make up that kinda stupid.

Friday, January 16, 2015

You're Hot and You're Cold...

Cherry-pickin':

The numbers are in. The year 2014 – after shattering temperature records that had stood for hundreds of years across virtually all of Europe, and roasting parts of South America, China and the Russian far east – was the hottest on record, with global temperatures 1.24F (0.69C) higher than the 20th century average, US government scientists said on Friday.

A day after international researchers warned human activities had pushed the planet to the brink, new evidence of climate change arrived. The world was the hottest it has been since systematic records began in 1880, especially on the oceans, which the agency confirmed were the driver of 2014’s temperature rise.


Hold on a minute! When all of us "global warming deniers" (i.e., people who understand the scientific method) pointed out that we had the coldest winter in recorded history a couple years ago, we were told that "you can't cherry pick data out of long term trends" and "that's just weather, not climate." What about all that huff? Oh, right; it doesn't fit YOUR narrative, so it's meaningless.


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Escape from Originality

Well, I'm sure this will suck:

Fox has emerged from competitive bidding and closed a deal to remake the 1981 John Carpenter-directed cult classic Escape From New York. Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman’s The Picture Company will produce.

Carpenter will be an executive producer and will exert creative influence over the project. Fox’s Mike Ireland brought it in and will steer. The hope is to reinvent the property with an eye toward launching a new franchise.


A franchise. Oh goody fucking gumdrops. They're not content with raping cult classics just once; they want to do it over and over and over again. Hollywood executives have become a seething mass of unimaginative greed drones. They're like Mr Burns, minus the funny parts.

Friday Timewaster

Noggins. Kinda like patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time.


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