Free Markets, Free People

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OMG! Rutherford B. Hayes, call your PR agent

Some seriously screwed up history today from the One.  President Obama was pitching hard, trying to again cast Republicans as backward looking types who were a problem for the county because they wanted to exploit fossil fuel (read the whole speech for that context).  He decided to use the way-back machine and take us back to the 19th President of the US who was, surprise, a Republican.

Said Obama:

“One of my predecessors, President Rutherford B. Hayes, reportedly said about the telephone: ‘It’s a great invention but who would ever want to use one?’" Obama said. "That’s why he’s not on Mt. Rushmore."

"He’s looking backwards, he’s not looking forward. He’s explaining why we can’t do something instead of why we can do something," Obama said.

Uh, “that’s why he’s not on Mt. Rushmore?”

My goodness.  Actually in that short statement, Mr. Obama got everything wrong.

Point 1 – Hayes never said that:

So we called up the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center in Fremont, Ohio, where Nan Card, the curator of manuscripts, was plenty willing to correct Obama’s ignorance of White House history. Just as soon as she finished chuckling.

"I’ve heard that before, and no one ever knows where it came from," Card said of Hayes’s alleged phone remark, "but people just keep repeating it and repeating it, so it’s out there."

Wait, so Hayes didn’t even say the quote that Obama is mocking him for? "No, no," Card confirmed.

Point 2 – Hayes was a fan of the telephone:

She then read aloud a newspaper article from June 29, 1877, which describes Hayes’s delight upon first experiencing the magic of the telephone. TheProvidence Journal story reported that as Hayes listened on the phone, "a gradually increasing smile wreathe[d] his lips and wonder shone in his eyes more and more.” Hayes took the phone from his ear, "looked at it a moment in surprise and remarked, ‘That is wonderful.’"

Point 3 – Hayes was a forward thinking President who had quite a few firsts to include the first President with … wait for it … a telephone:

In fact, Card noted, Hayes was not only the first president to have a telephone in the White House, but he was also the first to use the typewriter, and he had Thomas Edison come to the White House to demonstrate the phonograph. "So I think he was pretty much cutting edge," Card insisted, "maybe just the opposite of what President Obama had to say there."

But hey, don’t let the truth get in the way of a boffo rhetorical point.

0 for 3. By the way, Mr. Obama – this is one reason why you’ll never be on Mt. Rushmore either.  And I assume your speech writer or researcher or both, are presently seeking new employment?

Accountability?  This administration?  Is Eric Holder still AG?

What am I thinking?

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

It’s rare that I agree with Fidel Castro …

That got your attention didn’t it?  But it is true.  Castro, remarking on the American political scene, the President and those running for the office, said:

"Is it not obvious that the worst of all is the absence in the White House of a robot capable of governing the United States and preventing a war that would end the life of our species?" Castro, 85, wrote in one of the "reflections" he often publishes in Cuba’s state-controlled media.

Under the title "The Best President for the United States," Cuba’s ex-president said that if faced with a choice between Obama, a Republican rival or a robot, "90 percent of voting Americans, especially Hispanics, blacks and the growing number of the impoverished middle class, would vote for the robot."

Obama, Castro said, is "hopelessly immersed in seeking re-election," and "the dreams of (civil rights icon) Martin Luther King are thousands of light years further away than the nearest inhabitable planet."

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. 

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

Realistic 2012 horoscopes

I happened to run across this page on Yahoo today, containing horoscopes for 2012. I thought they were a bit optimistic, though. Considering all the other analysis I’ve seen about what 2012 is expected to bring, I think we need more realistic horoscopes. I’m thinking something along the following lines:

Aries:

This is a good year to be true to your astrological sign and become a sheep herder. When it becomes difficult to buy food because of worldwide financial calamity, you’ll have sheep’s milk for cheese, and you can also shear the sheep to knit new clothing when your current clothes wear out. As a final measure, rack of lamb is delicious. Don’t forget to buy shears and knitting needles.

Taurus:

Of course, those under this sign tend to be bull-headed, and will probably be some of the last ones to admit that their savings and other investments have been wiped out. So harness that stubbornness, and doggedly insist that all your assets be converted to gold, and bury it in your back yard.

Gemini:

The sign of the twin is a good tip to stock up on duplicates of anything you really need for survival, since it might be hard to buy them after the meltdown hits. So buy another Glock, another shotgun, and another AR. Don’t forget extra ammo for all of them!

Cancer:

Your sign indicates that you should move somewhere that you will be able to catch shellfish for food. Watch for condo deals on the shoreline in New England and especially Alaska. You might want to consider taking a job on a crab boat to build up some expertise.

Leo:

Thank goodness you are endowed with bravery, since you’re going to need it this year. Use it to plan your defensive perimeter. Sight in likely entry points, and be ready to distribute the ammo you’ll need when the marauding invaders come for your food after they’ve finished looting the grocery stores.

Virgo:

Be true to your sign. This is not a good year to get pregnant and have small children to feed. If you do, you can forget about toys next Christmas; they’ll be lucky to get a full meal. Plus, the collapse of the school system means that if you do have children, you better stock up on home schooling supplies.

Libra:

Use this year to bring some balance to your life. Add martial arts to your shooting practice, for example. And you’ll balance better by losing some weight and getting in shape. That will make your home defense much easier during the food riots.

Scorpio:

Your natural tendency to be short tempered must be controlled this year especially. When a suspicious character comes to the door seeking food, don’t be too quick on the trigger. Instead, put out a sign explaining that you don’t have any food to give away, and pretend not to hear the door. Only shoot if they ignore those measures and try to break in.

Capricorn:

As with the advice for Aries, you should investigate keeping some goats. In addition to the advantages of sheep, goats also are cantankerous enough to assist in property defense. Their milk makes better cheese, but they’re not such good eating. So lay in some extra canned goods to go with your goat’s milk cheese. Watch out for Occupy Wall Street types, who will probably start rioting as soon as the grocery store runs out of goat’s milk cheese for their arugula and baby beet salad.

Aquarius:

This might be your year to express your affinity for water and buy a house boat. It would be a great haven to ride out the riots and other civil unrest, as long as you could find enough fuel to scamper off to a safe spot. Scout out some likely spots ahead of time to lay in some emergency freeze-dried food, and don’t forget your rain collector for potable water.

Pisces:

Your path to surviving 2012 will likely mean lots of fishing. Tune up your equipment, lay in some lures, and don’t forget spare knives for scaling and fileting your catch. A portable mercury tester wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

GOP Candidate Thumbnails

After watching last night’s debate, I think I’ve finally nailed down my final impressions of the candidates.

I can’t help it, but every time I see Michelle Bachmann, she strikes me as being minutes away from boiling a bunny. But she hides the whole Fatal Attraction vibe pretty well.

Newt Gingrich seems to have a high opinion of himself, and the massively weighty thoughts that spring from his Olympian brow. He seems to content to let other people follow up on those ideas, as he’s too busy producing new deep thoughts to craft the old ones into reality. Thank God.

When Ron Paul starts his inevitable tirade against the Freemasons/Jews, I can’t say I will be surprised.

Mitt Romney almost convinces me that he does have core conservative principles. Almost.

If I close my eyes when Rick Perry speaks, the foremost image in my mind is George W. Bush. A slightly more eloquent one, of course.

A Rick Santorum/John Edwards ticket would have been the prettiest campaign team EVER. And talk about a "big tent"!

What can I say about Jon…um…Hunter? Hu….mmmm…Huntsman! Yes. Huntsman—that hasn’t already been said? Very distinguished hair.

Gary Johnson is a way friendlier face for libertarianism than Ron Paul. Or would be, if anyone outside New Mexico had ever heard of him.

If Jeb Bush could change his last name to "Rogers" or something, and jump into the race, he would probably lock up the nomination in days.

~
Dale Franks
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Axlerod on Gingrich

What is it with these guys that they feel they have to come up with stuff like this?

"The higher a monkey climbs on the pole the more you can see his butt."

Good thing no one has said something like this about our black president.  However, Axlerod should know that his man is waaaay up that pole and his posterior has been hanging out there for all to see for years.  And it is not a pretty sight, politically speaking.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

This is just funny

Thanks to looker for the link. No telling how long it will remain up so view it while you can:

 

 

Looker says the South African friend who sent it to him says Zimbabwe is demanding an apology.

Oh those wacky homicidal dictators.  Apparently the one still living doesn’t have much of a sense of humor.  Go figure.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

The Deniers rear their ugly heads again

Researchers at CERN, the big European physics laboratory, have released some interesting findings that, if true,would  cast doubt on a fundamental conclusion made by Einstein’s theory of relativity.

From 2009 through 2011, the massive OPERA detector buried in a mountain in Gran Sasso, Italy, recorded particles called neutrinos generated at CERN arriving a smidge too soon, faster than light can move in a vacuum. If the finding is confirmed by further experiments, it would throw more than a century of physics into chaos.

For over a century, since Albert Einstein published the Special Theory of Relativity (SRT)—buttressed further in 1916 by the General Theory—it has been settled science that the speed of is nature’s ultimate speed limit.  As an object approaches the speed of light, its mass increases. At the speed of light—were it possible to reach it—the object’s mass would be infinite. That would require, of course, an infinite amount of energy to propel the object.  Hence, moving faster than the speed of light is a physical impossibility.

Since 1905, through direct experimentation, mathematical modeling, and, later, measurements taken during the space program, as well as computer models, science has time and time again proved that the Special Theory of Relativity does, in fact, accurately model the way the universe works. The entire foundation of modern physics is built upon SRT. It has been proven correct over and over again. Clearly, SRT is settled science. An attempt to overturn it is, essentially, an attempt to overturn the entire body of physics that has been so painstakingly established over the past century.

Obviously, SRT is true.  Its conclusions are beyond questioning. Again, the science is settled, and there is almost universal scientific consensus about the truth of SRT.

Since that is so, one wonders what purpose the experiments at CERN might be. SRT needs no further validation, so there must be other motives. Who is funding this experimentation? Why are they so interested in denying SRT? If SRT is overturned, the implications throw cosmology in general into disarray. Out would go the Big Bang theory. Is this new experiment real science, or is it just another ploy of Big Plasma to overturn the settled view of cosmology?

These "scientists" at CERN say that more experimentation is needed to validate these results. But, they are so clearly wrong, it’s difficult to see what purpose further experimentation along these lines would serve. This transparent attempt to return physics to the limited and primitive world of physical experimentation, rather than the modern use of sophisticated mathematical models, is deeply subversive.

Now, there are calls for trying to replicate this experiment—at US taxpayer expense—at the Fermilab, here in the US. I see no reason to risk the scientific integrity of our premier physics laboratory pursuing the dreams of these SRT deniers at CERN.

SRT’s proof is incontrovertible, and any attempt to prove otherwise is a perversion of science. The science is settled. Consensus is almost universal. So, let’s not pursue these silly, pointless experiments. The important thing to remember about science is that, once you question the received wisdom proven repeatedly in the past, the result is chaos. It is vitally important that we do not throw all of modern physics and cosmology into disarray over some odd experimental results that really have no real-world application.

That would just be silly.

~
Dale Franks
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