Friday, March 30, 2007

Make Sure You Bring Cough Drops on the Plane

Now this was a draconian airline pilot. I guess he thought she had tuberculosis or something.
The flight attendants gave her water, and a doctor on the flight said
she would be OK to make the 10-hour flight. But the captain returned the
aircraft to the gate to drop off the girl and one of her teachers.

Rachel said she started crying when the captain told her to leave.
She and the teacher finally made it home the next day.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Iran's British Kidnapping a Canny Move

It looks like the Iranians are pulling the same trick as Hezbollah by kidnapping those British sailors. They are testing the West just like how Hezbollah tested Israel. It seemed that Israel was embarrassed by attacking Lebanon with a half-measure and then getting all kinds of condemnation from the rest of the world. Now the Iranians are trying the same tactic to gauge how committed the US and Britain are to checking their hegemony of the Middle East.

It seems like a perfect plan because the Brits can't go to the military option because they slashed their navy to the bone. The US will look like they are expanding a war that they can barely run now. Our War Weariness score is through the roof already so Iran knows that they can dictate the tempo on this. They can withhold the troops and make the Brits go through all kinds of hoops to get them back. They make the Brits look foolish while the US looks on and will dare not do a thing.

The last bonus they get is as long as this standoff lasts oil prices will continue to climb. I bet they feel pretty good when their principal export can be manipulated so easily. All they have to do is kidnap some sailors, ratchet up the pressure, and then release the hostages when prices reach a certain level. That is why I keep saying we need an energy policy that totally frees us from needing Iranian oil ever again. They wouldn't dream of manipulating us so easily when we don't need anything from them. I think a sensible energy policy and a national security policy are one and the same.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Low Carb Diets better then Low Fat Diets

It looks like the hard evidence is finally in.
After 12 weeks on the low-carb plan, study participants had lost an
average of 4.9 kilograms (10.8 pounds), compared to 2.5 kg (5.5 pounds) for
their peers on the low-fat diet.

It is no longer considered pseudo-science and all of the scare tactics from the bread industry seems to have all been for naught. I have kept off about 20 lbs from switching to a low carb diet whenever I get above a certain weight limit. There is no way I could do a portion control diet because you end up wasting food. So a low-carb diet is proven to get results and now the science back this up. I agree with this though:
The researchers say more research is needed to clarify the mechanisms
responsible for the greater initial losses of body weight and fat associated
with the RGL diet, to evaluate the persistence of these losses over longer
treatment periods, and to obtain greater insight into strategies that would
improve long-term weight-loss maintenance."

Hillary/Obama to ride Wave of Iraqi Corpses into the White House

It looks like we are going to sneak out of Iraq by Sept 2008 if the House gets their way. So lets see who they are going to mess up by doing this. First they are ignoring the Iraqi Vice President. He of course warns that chaos will reign if we pull out too early. I guess listening to a man whose life literally hangs in the balance when we pull out isn't what the Left like to do.

They are also tying the hands of the generals in charge over there. If there is a firm time table then he has maybe a few months to stabilize the country before he has to plan on pulling troops out. So about the only thing he could do is be as brutal as he can. He has to use as much force as possible to neutralize as many insurgents as he can before his forces are weakened by the Dems. I guess some extra collateral damage is fine for the Left.

All the insurgents have to do is go to ground until we have maybe 30,000 troops or so in country and then go crazy. We however look like a paper tiger that abandons its allies at the worst possible time. So it will tell every enemy of the US all they have to do is wait until the Left get into power over here and they will win every war. North Korea and Iran you now have a friend in Congress.

The worst part about this whole thing is how politically motivated it is. Why did they pick the month before the elections to have every troop out of Iraq? I think this is timed to make it so the chaos will get as bad as it can be right before the election. Then the Dems can look like we are pulling our troops out of Iraq right in the nick of time before the blood closes over the heads of the Iraqis. In other words Hillary/Obama gets to ride a wave of Iraqi corpses right into the White House. Some "progressives" we have here in this country.

Iran Siezes British Sailors

It looks like Iran is going to test the West now to see how we respond.
Cmdr. Kevin Aandahl of the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet said the Iranian
Revolutionary Guards had radioed a British warship explaining that no harm had
come to the 15 Britons and that they were seized because they were in Iranian
waters. The British Defense Ministry said the Iranians took custody of the
sailors and marines in Iraqi waters.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Tech Error Wipes out Billions

Now this is one dumb-assed technician.
Perhaps you know that sinking feeling when a single keystroke
accidentally destroys hours of work. Now imagine wiping out a disk drive
containing information for an account worth $38 billion.

That's what happened to a computer technician reformatting a disk drive
at the Alaska Department of Revenue. While doing routine maintenance work, the
technician accidentally deleted applicant information for an oil-funded account
— one of Alaska residents' biggest perks — and mistakenly reformatted the backup drive, as well.

There was still hope, until the department discovered its third
line of defense, backup tapes, were unreadable.

Now I don't understand why the backup tapes were unreadable. Were they corrupt or did they have a bad tape reader or something? They should have brought in techs from Maxtor or whoever made that tape drive and got the information that way. Instead they decided to rescan 800,000 images by hand at the cost of $200k in 9 days. I guess that worked out but I would have tried to get the information off of the tape by any means necessary.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Subprime Mortgages Drop Markets

It seems like all those No-Interest, Reverse Mortgages are finally started to come due much to the chagrin of the sector. Now we might see some more sub-prime bankruptcies coming down the pike.

The San Diego, California-based Accredited said it needed to raise
money after paying $190 million demanded by its own creditors, and said it was
cutting an unspecified number of jobs and was exploring "strategic options,"
including raising new capital.

Trading in New Century stock was suspended by the New York Stock
Exchange prior to delisting. The Irvine, California-based company also
said it had received a notice from the U.S. attorney for the Central District of
California that it was the subject of a criminal probe of trading in its

Good thing I have been in cash for the last couple of weeks.

Hillary Dons the Tinfoil Hat

Well it looks like Hillary is still on about that Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.

Clinton asserted on Tuesday that the conspiracy is alive and well, and
cited as proof the Election Day 2002 case of phone jamming in New Hampshire, a
case in which two Republican operatives pleaded guilty to criminal charges, and
a third was convicted.

I think it was Rove wearing his black hooded robe sending out mindwaves to his hideous minions to block those phone calls. And they did so using Deep Republican Magic tomes culled from the Lost Library of Barry Goldwater! And this woman wants to be our President? At least Obama is mentally stable.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Dems to Cut and Run by 2008

It looks like the terrorists can finally circle a date on the calendar in which they can drive us out of the country if this Dem bill passes.
Democratic leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives have tentatively
settled on a timetable and conditions for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq
which they hope to attach to a $100 billion Iraq war spending bill, senior
lawmakers said on Wednesday.

What makes it even better is that they are trying to attach the thing to a spending bill as well. In other words Dems want us out of there by 2008 even if they have to take away the troops bullets and body armor to do it. Well, at least they have a plan now. They plan to lose Iraq to Iran/chaos/terrorists/Islamic terror. At least it will be another battle won for them in their long "Get Bush" war.

Sniper Kills Captain America!

It looks like Marvel is finally trying to get rid of one of its first heroes. Maybe he is just too Red, White and Blue for the commies at Marvel.
Captain America is dead!

Assassinated, in fact, as he walks into a federal courthouse in New
York, under arrest and in handcuffs, headed to his arraignment for refusing to
sign the government's Superhero Registration Act and forcibly revealing his true

Dollar Coins Struck without In God We Trust

It looks like these coins are about to be worth somewhat more then a dollar:
Bailey said it was unknown how many coins didn't have the inscriptions.
Ron Guth, president of Professional Coin Grading Service, one of the world's
largest coin authentication companies, said he believes that at least 50,000
error coins were put in circulation.

"The first one sold for $600 before everyone knew how common they
actually were," he said. "They're going for around $40 to $60 on eBay now, and
they'll probably settle in the $50 range."

I wouldn't mind finding one of these coins and turning $1 into $50 in an instant.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Anti-Greenhouse Bulbs

That new USAToday opinions section is the gift that keeps on giving. This is another great article about compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and whether the government should ban regular incandescent bulbs. I didn't know that this fact was true:
More important, the potential greenhouse-gas reductions are
stunning: The U.S. government estimates that if every American household
replaced just one bulb with a CFL, it would have an impact equal to taking a
million cars off the

I would be in favor of a ban on the sale of regular bulbs. If these CFLs are such an energy saver then we should embrace them for the sole purpose that it will reduce our need for "Terrorist Oil." Anything that prevents more money from going into the pockets of the Mullahs or Chavez is a good thing. If it takes buying a whole bunch of weird looking light bulbs to prevent the building of one more bomb belt or Hezbollah rocket then I am all for it.

If Al Gore sold Inconvenient Truth as a way to break the Mullah's grip on power and less as a scare story of 60 feet of water drowning the coasts in 100 years then he would get more conservatives in his camp. Conservatives care a lot about security and the best way to get that security is to stop making our enemies rich.

Iraq War Defeatism

I was reading an article on how USA Todays new site design had a 92% negative reaction (I kind of like it so I am in the 8% camp) and I came across a very interesting opinion blog.

There's a deep irony to the Democratic Party's dilemma over Iraq. For
30 years, the party's left-wing base has reflexively proclaimed every foreign
policy challenge "another Vietnam." These voices rise and fall with America's
fortunes. In 1991, again in 2003 and ever since, they've insisted Iraq is Arabic
for Vietnam. They also claimed that Afghanistan was Pashtun for Vietnam. There
were even some who insisted Kosovo was Serbo-Croatian for Vietnam and, of
course, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Grenada were each feared to be Spanish for
Vietnam. Like the old saw about Eskimos having a hundred words for snow, it
seemed that anyplace the United States sends troops creates a new word for

The funny thing is that Dems were the original "war-mongers" when it came to Vietnam. It was Kennedy and later LBJ that got us into that war in the first place. It was then up to Nixon to escalate the war in order to try for a decent peace. When that wasn't possible the US was forced to cut and run and sacrificed Vietnam to the commies.

Now we have the exact opposite situation in Iraq. The Repubs started the thing and now the Dems want us to end it in defeat. Now lets say we listen to Obama and pull everyone out in 6 months. Then when the humanitarian disaster breaks out do we go back in? In Vietnam the Repubs didn't go back into Vietnam when the North attacked at the end of the war. And I would be willing to lay even money that the Dems will go hammer and tongs against sending troops back in when the death squads go wild. So I would agree that there are parallels to Vietnam because it looks like we are again going to save American lives at the expense of foreign lives. I wonder how many dead Iraqis is equal to one dead American to a Dem?

US. Attorneys Intimidated By Hangups!

Now these are some wimpy attorneys:
A fired federal prosecutor told a Senate committee Tuesday that he felt
"leaned on" and sickened as Republican Sen. Pete Domenici (
news, bio, voting
) hung up on him in disgust last fall when told that
indictments in a corruption case against Democrats would not be issued before
the fall elections.

And this is why he was leaned on and sickened:
"He said, 'Are these going to be filed before November?'" former
federal prosecutor David Iglesias, one of eight U.S. attorneys summarily fired
in recent months, told the panel. "I said I didn't think so. And to which he
replied, 'I'm very sorry to hear that.' And then the line went dead."

So Domenici didn't say goodbye and apparently this guy felt leaned on and sickened? Then he recieved another "pressuring" phone call from Rep. Heather Wilson:

Iglesias told the panel he received a call from Wilson about two weeks
earlier, in which she asked him about sealed indictments — a topic prosecutors
cannot discuss. Wilson's question "raised red flags in my head," Iglesias said.

"I was evasive and nonresponsive to her question," Iglesias told
the panel, saying he talked generally about why some indictments are sealed.
"She was not happy with that answer. And she said, 'Well I guess I'll have to
take your word for it." The call ended almost immediately, Iglesias said.

Asked by Schumer if he felt pressured by that call, Iglesias
replied: "Yes sir, I did."

Pressue to do their job? That is unheard of! I think these guys were fired because they didn't do their jobs in a timely manner. So now they know how it is to work in a regular job.

Friday, March 02, 2007

What is the Yen Carry Trade?

This article explains everything you need to know about one of the factors that made the market decline this week.
A carry trade occurs when a speculator borrows in one currency and
trades in another. Few markets have been riper for carry traders than Japan,
because of a depressed yen and near-zero borrowing costs. This condition has
been in place for years, a result of nearly two decades of recession in Japan.
To spur economic growth, the Japanese central bank has kept its prime lending
rate at essentially zero.