Monday, May 26, 2014

What were their names?

Caleb Harrington, Lexington Militia. Killed  April 19, 1775, Battle of Lexington Green.

Midshipman Joseph Israel, USN. Killed September 4, 1804, Tripoli.

Lt. Peter Gamble, USN. Killed September 11, 1814, Battle of Lake Champlain.

Pvt. Francis D. Carter, 1st Illinois Regiment. Killed, February 23, 1847, Battle of Buena Vista.

Lt. Theodore W. Hodges, 55th Illinois Volunteers Infantry. Killed April 6, 1862, Battle of Shiloh.

Private George Hooker, United States Army, Killed January 22, 1873, Tonto Creek, Arizona

Chief Yeoman George Henry Ellis, USN. Killed July 3, 1898, Battle of Santiago de Cuba.

Private Robert L Blackwell, United States Army. Killed October 11, 1918, Hundred Days Offensive.

Chief Radioman John Francis Bauer US Naval Reserve, Killed October 31, 1941, USS Reuben James

Signalman First Class Douglas A. Munro, United States Coast Guard, Killed September 27, 1942, Guadalcanal

Charles Villines, Civilian Contractor, Killed October 7, 1943, Wake Island

Pvt. John T. Julian, United States Army, Killed January 1, 1945, Battle of the Bulge.

PFC Attilio M Lupacchino, United States Marine Corps. Killed December 9, 1950, Battle of Chosin Reservoir.

1st Lt Howard Walker Kaiser, United States Air Force. Killed September 13, 1966. Vietnam.

Captain Arthur Bonifas, United States Army, Killed August 18, 1976, Korean DMZ

LCPL Thomas R. Adams, United States Marine Corp. Killed October 8, 1990. Operation Desert Storm.

Seaman James Rodrick McDaniels, United States Navy, Killed October 12, 2000, USS Cole.

SSG Maudlyn A. White, United States Army, Killed September 11, 2001, Pentagon.

LCPL Abraham Simpson, United States Marine Corps, Killed November 9, 2004, Fallujah.

SSgt David D. Self, United States Army. Killed May 16, 2011, Afghanistan.

Rest in Peace.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

You didn't build that.

Fearless prediction: If the president does not win reelection his "You didn't build that" line will go down in political folklore as his Dukakis in a Tank moment.

Friday, March 16, 2012

No Vote for Oil

Just musing on beautiful day:

President Obama and the Saudi’s are going to collude on the election. Starting in July the spigot will be turned on full blast. The price of gas at the pump will begin dropping in mid August. By mid-October it will be below $2.75 a gallon and falling and President Obama will begin taking bows.

November 7th the flow will be stopped.

The net affect will be two-fold. First is the President will be reelected. Second is numerous productive wells in the United States will be plugged due to low prices, thus increasing our dependence on the middle east.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Broad Coverage

Obama Care is going to cover female birth control because:

  1. The cost of going with out is a drain on society; IE unplanned pregnancy

  2. The great health risk involved of a pregnancy to the individual

So, does this mean Obama Care is going to pay for my new bicycle helmet each year?

  1. Cost of going without has a great potential drain on society; IE quadriplegic with brain damage

  2. Cost of not riding has a great potential drain on society; IE lack of exercise = obesity, heart disease, ETC.

  3. The great health risk of riding without a helmet on me as an individual

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Uncle Ron

I guess it is just me, but Ron Paul reminds me a rich uncle you only see at Thanksgiving Dinner. His conversation would have little to do with the present topic and he would provide the same humerous interlude every year by walking up to all the children present and saying "Pull my finger".

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Mitt Rolaids

There has been much talk amid GOP primaries about voting for “the most conservative candidate who can defeat Barak Obama”. That Republicans must refuse the urge to elect a conservative and go for the win. In other words, stay with a strategy that served so well in 1992, 1996, and 2008, while only succeeding in 2000 and 2004 because the Democrats ran two of the worst candidates since George McGovern.
I think this is the primary source of Mitt Romney’s appeal. How often is it said “he can beat Obama”? Let’s please ignore the fact that it is generally leftists who are saying this with grim smirks. One can almost hear them thinking “I can’t believe they are buying this”.
To conservatives everywhere: Mitt is not It. This has nothing to do with him being a Mormon, Bain Capital, venture-capitalism, or Romney care. It all boils down to stomach acid.
Should the Republican candidate prevail, the primary function of the 45th President and 113th Congress will be to repeal the three big acts: Obamacare, Dodd-Frank, and Sarbanes-Oxley.

Mitt does not have the intestinal fortitude for this fight.

I believe what has made Mitt rich and famous and a threat to win the Presidency is his “go-along to get-along” attitude. This attitude is the reason Mitt has long been considered a flip-flopper. He simply adopts the latest trends and hangs on. For the repeal of these three laws that are working as a trifecta to strangle businesses across our county we need a leader who understands the danger these laws place on the countries financial well-being and work stringently with Congress to repel. Not amend, not “defund”, not work within the system to “improve that which works and remove that which doesn’t”; but to end, remove, and repeal these laws and rid ourselves of these onerous blights on capital.
Now, I know some out there might say that who sits in the White House is not nearly as important as a nuclear Iran, an unstable Iraq, and growing army of Islamic fanatics raised on hatred of the west and filled with religious fervor to strike a blow against the infidel. While they are absolutely right about the gravity of the threat from radical Muslims; they also need to realize only a country that is strong financially can wage an active war against terrorist insurgents on a world wide scale. Without financial backing, most intelligence: not gathered, the little that is: not analyzed, and finally there is no force to act upon what little we do learn.
First things first, we have to make long term decisions to get our financial house in order. Mitt Romney is not the man to make the tough decision to set policy of removing these laws and to lead the fight to set-in-place the fundamental building blocks that will restore our country financially.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

30 Rocks in His Head?

I’m sure most have heard of the case of Alec Baldwin versus American Airlines. Where Mr. Baldwin was removed from a flight for refusing to turn off his electronic game despite repeatedly being told it was against FAA regulations. Now, I’m not here to discuss the factual nature of the regulation and whether or not is does interfere with cockpit equipment or even the fact that a grown (?) man threw a hissy fit over a video game. Nor will I point out the possible hypocrisy of Mr. Baldwin visa-vie his well published scolding of his daughter for being rude. No, my thoughts go to the political position Mr. Baldwin has always espoused and the nature of regulations in general.

Mr. Baldwin is a proud liberal. Liberals in general appear to believe that if we just put enough rules in place we will all lead happy, safe, warm, comfortable lives. Rules, laws, and regulations are the hallmark of any liberal group. The occupy crowd wishes to have greater regulation over wall street. The recent democratic led congress believed we didn’t need to allow failing banks to fail, but to prop them up with a new bevy or rules and regulations. With any disaster, man-made or natural, the liberal solution is always a new set of rules.

So my question: why does Mr. Baldwin, who supports such rules and regulation to make life fair for all, not follow the rules immediately and without question? Doesn’t he realize these are Federal Regulations and were put in for our safety?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

C to Shining C

I find it interesting that the sexual harassment charges against Herman Cain occurred during that brief window of history between the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings and Bill Clinton's la-affair Lewinsky. A time where noticing a woman’s new hair cut or commenting on her new purse could get a man fired and a company embroiled in a lawsuit. That brief moment in history when women were allowed to retreat behind the powder puff with a case of the vapors when a subject appeared that offended their delicate sensibilities. I won’t mention this time also coincided with women demanding equal acceptance in the work place, some oxymoron’s are just too difficult to comprehend without listing to Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” for 24 straight hours while drinking tequila. I am just glad that famous liberal David Letterman didn’t fire a producer and give her job to a woman willing to have sex with him in this time frame; had that occurred we would have been denied all his “wonderful” attack humor on Sarah Palin.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tax Loopholes

Two thing President Obama appears to believe: 1) That a donation being tax deductible has no bearing on the amount being donated 2) The taxes not paid on donations because they are tax deductible is tantamount to stealing from the Federal Treasury. I agree completely. To that ends I propose we stop making political donations tax deductible. With President Obama planning on spending $1 Billion on the next election that would be in the neighborhood of $250,000,000 more to the government coffers.

Obese Childrem

Harvard researchers are advocating the government must step in to help morbidly obese children due to health issues and hold parents criminally responsible for child abuse or neglect. Question: if a child is forced to eat vegetables and denied sugar at what point will this damage his self esteem and cause the parents to be held criminally responsible for child abuse or neglect? Question 2: What if the children completely refuse to eat grilled chicken, fresh vegetables, and fruit salad, would the parents be charged with child abuse for starving their children? Question 3: Would the Harvard researchers agree that people who knowingly engage in sexual activates that can lead to health issues also be held criminally responsible? After all, isn’t the issue criminal charges for behavior that can cause health issues?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Things are complicated

I have a "friend" on facebook called Chip. Chip's actually a guy I played in band with in high school, but who I haven't seen in decades, so he doesn't really qualify as a friend anymore, except in the facebook sense. Anyway, Chip runs a manufacturing company founded by his father that makes machines that have to do with making pipes. They make machines that make fintubes, whatever those are. (I get a vision of the offspring of a pipe bred with a 50s Cadillac, but I'm sure that's not right.) They also make equipment for fusing polyethylene pipe. As near as I can tell, they don't make polyethylene pipe or machines for making polyethylene pipe (unless fintubes are also polyethylene pipes), just the machines for fusing them. They seem to employ 100 or more people based on the company group photo on their website.

So what's the point? Chip's company strikes me as an outstanding example of how damn complicated our world is. Here's this company, employing dozens of people focusing on a really narrow portion of our industrial process: making machines to fuse pipes. There are pipes everywhere, of course, and fusing them is really important, if you don't want them to leak, but pipes are just devises to move fluids about. They're kind of dull. The really complicated stuff happens before or after the fluid goes into the pipe. Pipes aren't really central to anything people do with fluids, they're just a good way to get fluids from one place to another. Yet one small part of the process involved in creating these rather pedestrian devices is important enough to support a small industry. (I assume that Chip's company has competitors in the fusion machine and fintube-making machine markets.)

Multiple that by all of the other steps in the process of making pipes and you come to the the realization that the humble pipe implies a incomprehensibly complicated industrial infrastructure. I don't even want to think about the machines doing complicated things to the fluids at the end of the pipes.

I don't really have anywhere to go with this, except to say that it boggles my mind, and that anyone who claims to understand our economy is either lying or deluded.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Margin of error

I've been looking at political polls a lot recently. In my attempt to understand them, I've been thinking about the terms thrown about with explanation, one of which is "margin of error".

I don't think margin of error means what people think it means. You will often see polls like this: Bruce Scott (R) 51% v. Scott Bruce (D) 49%, margin of error 3%. To which people respond, "that's a dead heat since it's within the margin of error". Not exactly. Margin of error cuts both way; the real percentage is as likely to be 54-36 as it is 48-52. Given that, there are seven possibilities (54-36, 53-37, 52-48, 51-49, 50-50, 49-51, and 48-52). If one assumes that each of these possibilities is equally likely, then the "republican" wins 4 out of 7 times, the "democrat" 2 out of 7 times, and the lawyers 1 out of 7 times.

I realize that this is a gross oversimplification. To begin with, votes almost never break in even integer percentages, but the 2:1 win ratio for the "republican" v. "democrat" will apply for fractional results as well, the percentage of ties, however, will shrink. It is also probably that there is some sort of bell curve for these possibilities, so that 54-36 and 48-52 are equally likely, but both are less likely than 53-37 and 49-51. Even given that, the area under "republican" side of the curve will be greater that the area under the "democrat" side of the curve. I suspect that the 2:1 ratio might even still apply.

I also realize that I've never taken a course in statistics or probability, and that I may be completely wrong here. But until someone explains to me why this reasoning is wrong, I'm going to assume that "margin of error" is something that can almost be ignored.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

New Suggested reading.

I've added a new suggested reading to our list "The Long War Journal". Unlike the other 3 posters here, I feel that the Long War is some what more important than who has power in Washington DC. I'm not saying that having a liberal Congress and President is a good thing, or that having a conservative Congress and President would be a bad thing, but I am saying that what Al Qaeda and other jihad groups are doing is somewhat more pressing than what the capital gains tax rate is.

Monday, September 27, 2010

2012 and history.

What does it take to beat a sitting president running for reelection? If history is any guide, it takes a strong challenge from within the president's party. Since 1900, with one exception, every sitting president who failed to gain reelection faced a significant challenge from within his party. It works the other way as well. In the same time span, every sitting president, with one exception, that has faced significant opposition within his party failed to win the general election.

In 1912 William Taft faced a strong challenge for the nomination from Teddy Roosevelt. When Taft won the nomination, Teddy formed his Bull Moose party. Woodrow Wilson crushed Taft in the general election. In 1952 Senator Estes Kefauver of Tennessee defeated Harry Truman in the New Hampshire primary. Shortly thereafter Truman withdrew from the race. In 1968 Lyndon Johnson barely beat Eugene McCarthy in the New Hampshire primary. Four days later, Robert Kennedy entered the race and two weeks later Johnson withdrew. In 1976, Gerald Ford faced Ronald Reagan in the primaries and barely won, finally winning the nomination in a floor fight at the convention. Ford lost to Jimmy Carter in the general election. In 1980 Carter faced a strong challenge from Ted Kennedy who won 40% of the delegates to the Democratic convention. Carter was crushed by Ronald Reagan in the general election. In 1992, George H. W. Bush faced a symbolic but significant challenge from Patrick Buchanan. Although Buchanan won no state primaries and only an handful of delegates, he did win a significant percentage of the primary vote. His run highlighted the dissatisfaction with Bush felt by the conservative wing of the Republican party. Bush also faced a third party challenger, Ross Perot, who may have acted as a spoiler for Bush.

The one example of a sitting president facing a significant intra-party challenge and prevailing in the general election was Harry Truman in 1948. Truman faced a serious Party leaders approached Dwight Eisenhower, but he refused. (The Republicans also approached him in '48 bas well, but he turned them down also. He didn't reveal his party until 1952.) Truman also had a three way split in the Democratic Party, with the new Progressive Party nominating FDR's second Vice President, Henry Wallace. The Democratic Party split again at the convention over civil rights, with southern Democrats walking out and forming the Dixiecrats behind Strom Thurmond. Despite this significant party disunity, Truman pulled off the greatest upset ever in presidential politics, and won the general election.

The one example of a sitting president being defeated in the general election without facing a strong challenge for the nomination was in 1932, when Herbert Hoover easily won the Republican nod, but was soundly defeated by Franklin Roosevelt in the general election. OF course, this was in the midst of the Great Depression, and Hoover's policies were widely blamed for exacerbating the country's economic woes.

Given that history, this could be very bad news for the president.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

High T.E.A.

Since Senator Reid dismisses our current taxation as 'voluntary'; how does one go about 'involuntarily' not paying taxes legally?

Second graders know when they have no pennies in the piggy bank they are told no.

Even drunker sailors know when to stop spending - when the funds run out.

Why is it that Congress continues to spend with no accountability? Not only are they spending, but also borrowoing at alarming rates with no end in sight. Now in order to get us out of debt they propose a 1% tax increase. Is this a joke? Why reward these Senators with more money that they are going to over spend and tax the American population again and again.

Memo to Congress - stop spending.

Enough is enough. It is time to vote these morons out of offfice come November.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

On McChrystal Part II

OK, I can see why McChrystal was fired. He's lucky to not get Court Martialed (Article 88 of the UCMJ) But why the hell did President Obama demote GEN Petraeus as his replacement? Petraeus was Central Command's Commander, i.e. McChrystal's boss.

Which brings up the question of who is replacing Petraeus at Central Command? For a while Lt. General Allen (USMC) will take over, but he's a three star and that's a 4 star slot. This also puts the Central Command in the some what odd position of having a 4 star general under the operation command of a 3 star general. Obama needs to get a replacement in a Central Command ASAP. Either promote LTGEN Allen (which might be tricky given that the USMC has a very limited number of full (i.e 4 star) generals (like one I recall correctly, the commandant of the Marines )) or find some under-employed 4 star that is willing to take that job, and please not a squid or a zomer.

Of course, IMAO, the correct sequence would have been fire McChrystal, brevet Allen to 4 stars (and get him confirmed by the US Senate ASAP), and assign him to AfPac commander. Among other things things, the USMC seems to have their collective shit together more in Afghanistan than the non-special forces US Army does. The USMC does have a longer (and more successful) history of "Small Wars" than the US Army does. But what do I know, I was just a SP/5 in the Army. Wait, that's more experience than Obama has...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

On McChrystal

One of the most significant events in American history was when Washington surrendered his sword to the Continental Congress, establishing the firm tradition that the military is under civilian control. This is a key ingredient of a successful free society. I haven't read the Rolling Stone article, but I suspect that I would agree with many of the opinions that General McChrystal expressed. That aside, his comments can not be defended. No man is indespensible, but even if the war effort in Afghanistan would be seriously damaged, that would be less of a threat to free society than weakening the principle of civilian control of the military. The President would be justified if he fired McChrystal and probably should.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Epic something

I don't know if this is an epic win or an epic fail. It's damn sure epic, however.

funny food photos - I Dont Drink, Do You Have a Glass of Sandwich?
see more

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Opps The first in the series was some where else.

Things that I sort of wish would happen to Top American Leaders

Couple of notes just as a point of comparison. Note that, even though it's raining he's not holding an umbrella and looking silly. For that matter he doesn't look silly after the wind hits the wreath.

Also note the serious Men in Suits standing around with brief cases. You know they have some serious firepower in those cases. I like the one staring into the hedge. What was he expecting? A raccoon or squirrel to jump out and attack?

I knew there was at least one other reason to like Sandra

Sandra Bullock accepted the "Troops Choice" Award for Entertainer of The Year, which was voted on by members of the military on Spike TV's Web site.