Friday, August 22, 2008

Worried about brain damage from your compact fluorescent?


Well, worry no more.

Scientific American sez,

"[Put] a portable AM radio near one that’s on and listen for extra static the closer you get."
Then ask yourself, "Being awash in radio transmissions as I am, how likely is it that the light bulb static I have to strain to hear is less worse for me than the AM radio transmission blaring out the same radio?"

Then, turn off the lamp and go to bed where you will lie awake worrying if you overmarried.

Why these nominees?


Because we've been voting for the lesser of two evils for so long that evil is all that's out there.

Should li'l George Obama leave Africa for the DNC?


It might be difficult luring li'l Georgie from hovel-tending to the convention, as there'd be a good chance of some other feral abo squatting on his prems, leaving li'l Georgie no home to come back to.

Still and all, big brother O has some swing. Maybe he could arrange for a wireless laptop with a Nigerian franchise on scamming ofays abroad for Georgie. That should pull in at least a dollar a month, providing he includes brother O's Washington phone number for verification of the scam. Note to Georgie --- don't use O's Chicago phone number: there's some area codes even a scamee won't touch.

It's just TV, folks


"So, what does your husband do?"
"He's a TV reporter who poses as their meteorologist."
"That's wonderful. Mine does, too."
"Your husband poses as a meteorologist?"
"Oh, my no. He's a cable installer who poses as an electric-meter reader."
"Well, I swan. What on earth for?"
"He goes up to the house looking like he's reading the meter, but he's
really checking to see if the cable customer is home."
"And then he goes in to hookup the cable?"
"Oh my no, bless your heart. If he sees they're home he goes away. If they're not home, he leaves a "sorry I missed you" note on the door."
"Well, lands o' goshen."
"Yes, it's a small world isn't it?"
"Yes, it surely is."

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Barbara gigs Jimmy


"Pwesident Cawtuh, wiw you be dewiviwing a speech at the convention?"
"Yes, Ms Walters. May I call you Barbara?"
"Why yes, Pwesident Cawtuh, you may. Befowuh you go into the convention hall, wiw you make shuwuh they wocked up all the wabbits?"
"What? Listen, "Babwuh," I don't need this from you, you hare-lipped has-been."
"Oh, you said hawuh-wipped! How pwecious! Anothuh wabbit joke!"
"I'm outta here."

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Overheard on the web


That's the great thing about primary election campaigns.
They give the Democrats a taste of their own media.


HIllary crowned Miss Also-Ran


Clinton's name to be placed in nomination at next week's Democratic nominating convention --- ABC News
"So, there's a possibility I can still get the nomination?"
"Well, no, Hillary, this is more of an honorarium."
"What kind of Potemkin convention puts people into nomination who can't, and they don't want to, win?"
"Think of it as a merit badge, a Girl Scout achievement for all the money you've sp... I mean all the work you've done."
"Listen. That pencil-necked Indonesian-mullah half-breed can't be allowed to waltz in here outta nowhere and steal the Oval Office from me. I embody the heritage of Margaret Thatcher, the greatest woman politico of our time. You owe me."
"Well, actually, Hillary, Margaret Thatcher didn't ride into power on the shoulders of her husband Denis."
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"I...put down that ashtray, Senator."
"Get back over here, you little creep. I want to 'nominate' you !"

Monday, August 11, 2008

Scenes from the Edwardian Opera

But discrepancies between his story and the unraveling timeline of events raise more questions about whether Edwards' attempts to come clean are in fact just more lies and half-truths.
From the libretto:

The fat lady remains in her dressing room:
There'll be no singing for the nonce.
Meanwhile, Siegfried stabs Fafner
in the heart with Nothung, singing,
"Sometimes, Nothung can be a real cool hand."

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Kinsley: "That would be socialism"


It is a convention of platform-writing that all government spending is referred to as “investment.”

Wow. Michael Kinsley looks at
the Democrat Kool-Aid and says,
"Do not want." Of course, he'll
say the same for the Republican
sweet-swill, but it's nice to see
a partisan hack hack his own

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Got Soot?


Soaring heating oil prices ignite firewood demand

The run on firewood started last winter when heating oil surpassed $3 a gallon and kept on climbing. The environmental impact of the shift from oil to wood is unclear. State-of-the-art woodstoves are cleaner than older models, but particulate emissions remain higher than those of oil furnaces.
Anyone walking through a fireplace-friendly neighborhood on a cold night, eyes burning and nose recoiling from smoke invisible and not-so-invisible, can spot the enviro-looney here. Even state of the art woodburners are dirtier than oil, the suppression of which falls like ashes on the shoulders of the "hell, no, we won't drill," crowd.

Enjoy the air pollution, Nancy. And give a thought to forests cut down, the Bambis rampant, just to inefficiently replace what you and yours prefer stay in the ground.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Reach out and push someone away


Cultural artifacts existed in a hierarchy, with opera and fine art at the top, and stripping at the bottom.
David Brooks has a great little piece that deserves a read. As someone who was an early adopter but now has fallen off the technobus, I can only watch it trundle off into the distance, radical redos of significant improvements of paradigm-shifting upgrades trailing like so many cans strung from strings tied to the rear bumper.

Being antisocial has finally paid off, saving me untold amounts of money by simply not caring to be in touch in the least.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Taranto softening towards Obama?


From the WSJ Best of the Web

Reservations About Reparations
Contrary to our speculation in a Wednesday item, it appears that Barack Obama is not a reparationist. has a transcript of Obama's question-and-answer session with minority journalists, which provides some context for the comment we highlighted.

It came in response to a question from Brian Bull of Wisconsin Public Radio as to whether an Obama administration would "issue an apology to Native Americans for the atrocities they've endured for the past 500 years." Obama suggests that he would consider doing so, then goes on to say:

I've consistently believed, when it comes--whether it's Native American issues, whether it's African American issues and reparations, that the most important thing for the US government to do is not just to offer words, but offer deeds. And when you look at the situation on tribal lands, the fact that by every socioeconomic indicator Native Americans are doing worse than any other population on health, on education, on substance abuse--their housing situations are deplorable, unemployment is skyrocketing--you know, I have to confess that I'm more concerned about delivering a better life and creating a better relationship with the Native American peoples than anything else. And that's what I want to engage tribal leaders in making sure happens.

CNN's Suzanne Malveaux then tries to get a more specific response from Obama:

Malveaux: When it comes to reparations, would you take it a step further, in terms of apologizing for slavery or offering reparations to various groups?
Obama: You know, I have said in the past, and I'll repeat again, that the best reparations we can provide are good schools in the inner city and jobs for people who are unemployed. And I think that strategies that invest in lifting people out of the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow, but that have brought applicability and allow us to build coalitions to actually get these things done, that, I think, is the best strategy.
You know, the fact is, is that dealing with some of the legacy of discrimination is going to cost billions of dollars. And we're not going to be able to have that kind of resource allocation, unless all Americans feel that they are invested in making this stuff happen. And so, you know, I'm much more interested in talking about how do we get every child to learn, how do we get every person healthcare, how do we make sure that everybody has a job, how do we make sure that every senior citizen can retire with dignity and respect. And if we have a program, for example, of universal healthcare, that will disproportionately affect people of color, because they're disproportionately uninsured. If we've got an agenda that says every child in America should get--should be able to go to college, regardless of income, that will disproportionately affect people of color, because it's oftentimes our children who can't afford to go to college.
There's a contradiction here between expanding the welfare state in a way that "all Americans are invested" and the idea of reprations, which would benefit those Americans whose ancestors were wronged at the expense of those whose ancestors were not wronged. It's hard to see how Obama would square that circle. Then again, probably the purpose of his answer was simply to dodge the question rather than forthrightly say he opposes reparations.

Our Friends the Pakistanis
Disturbing news from the New York Times about one of America's flakier allies:

American intelligence agencies have concluded that members of Pakistan's powerful spy service helped plan the deadly July 7 bombing of India's embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, according to United States government officials.
The conclusion was based on intercepted communications between Pakistani intelligence officers and militants who carried out the attack, the officials said, providing the clearest evidence to date that Pakistani intelligence officers are actively undermining American efforts to combat militants in the region.
The American officials also said there was new information showing that members of the Pakistani intelligence service were increasingly providing militants with details about the American campaign against them, in some cases allowing militants to avoid American missile strikes in Pakistan's tribal areas.
The McCain campaign should take note, too. Obama long ago started talking about taking military action against Pakistan--a stance that seemed crazy at the time but now may make Illinois's' junior senator look tough, even realistic.