Friday, December 30, 2016

An Example of EPA Overreach: They Want to Shut Down Wood Stoves in the Depths of the Alaskan Winter

This is exactly why cleaning up regulations will be a big deal in 2017.
Like most people in Alaska, the residents of those frozen cities are burning wood to keep themselves warm this winter. Smoke from wood-burning stoves increases small-particle pollution, which settles in low-lying areas and can be breathed in. The EPA thinks this is a big problem. Eight years ago, the agency ruled that wide swaths of the most densely populated parts of the region were in “non-attainment” of federal air quality standards.
That prompted state and local authorities to look for ways to cut down on pollution from wood-burning stoves, including the possibility of fining residents who burn wood. After all, a declaration of noncompliance from the EPA would have enormous economic implications for the region, like the loss of federal transportation funding.
So they threatened people using wood burning stoves with "economic implications" for simply keeping themselves from dying during winter? This is exactly why people dislike the EPA and cite them for all sorts of nonsense.

The Lost City of Leng found the the Antarctic! #HPLovecraft

NASA do not investigate!
Scientists believe a massive object that could change our understanding of history is hidden beneath the Antarctic ice.
The huge and mysterious “anomaly” is thought to be lurking beneath the frozen wastes of an area called Wilkes Land. The area is 151 miles across and has a minimum depth of about 2,700 feet.
Some researchers believe it is the remains of a truly massive asteroid more than twice the size of the Chicxulub space rock that wiped out the dinosaurs.
151 miles across and 2700 feet deep! That is no asteroid! That is a City man was never meant to see! Its full of eldritch terrors, alien buildings, and ululating pipes that drive men insane. Unwholesome bodied and noisome fleshed creatures prowl its cyclopean streets and raise their thousand maws and ten-thousand eyes to uncaring Gods at the Center of the Universe. It is a place lost to time and should be lost from memory by the good people of this world. NASA beware!   

2017 Predicitons: Its Going to be a Good Year Folks


1. Donald Trump will have a whirlwind 100 days and will have one of the more successful runs in modern times. He leaves much of the heavily lifting to his talented cabinet and goes after minutiae with his Twitter account and phone. There will be a rise of the Trump Twitter-ologists like the Kremlin-ologists of old who pick over his Tweets looking for hidden meanings and such. All in all at the end of the year America would be well on the way to prosperity that it hasn't seen in more than 16 years.

2. There is a huge fight over the next Supreme Court nominee as the Dems make their stand on this issue. There is much character assassination and back-and-forth but Scalia's seat goes to another person in his same mold but far younger. This person turns out to not be as conservative as many think.

3. Black Lives matter leaves the stage as the racial animus in the country slowly recedes. By the end of the year there are less cop deaths and less deaths by violence by young African Americans. Crime levels slow go back to normal as the cops go back about their business with less fear.

4. The main stream media suffers cracks that they never had before as CNN, Fox, and MSNBC and the various newspapers become less important to the zeitgeist. Viewership is way down as American's enjoys the prosperity that the Trump era brings in. Many Americans are energized as consumer confidence and other measures are way up by the end of the year.

5. Hillary Clinton is not hear from very much but Obama seems to be everywhere as the left holds on to the last popular thing they seem to have left. Young Bernie supporters slowly remake the Democrat party as they stay involved in the process.


1. Russia moves back in the Great Power spotlight as they now have a man in the White House that apologizes for their misdeeds. They solidify gains in the Levant and form a partnership with the US to eliminate ISIS. Russia slowly moves their neighbors into their Sphere of Influence by undermining elections to but pro-Putin people in charge. Russia deftly plays the Great Game and looks powerful and influential by the end of the year.

2. North Korea collapses as Kim tries to hold onto power by eliminating everyone he can. It is not enough as the Red Chinese backed junta takes control of the Hermit Kingdom. The Red Chinese dominate North Korea and move their Sphere of Influence outward.

3. The Red Chinese still rattle the sabre in the South China sea and various places in the world but there is a rapprochement with the Trump White House (that is still weird to say) by the end of the year. The USA and China work on a long term trade and security deal that is unprecedented. There is no Trade War and oddly enough Trump turns out to be the best thing Red China ever got in the White House.

4. The Syrian Civil war is totally over by the end of the year as ISIS is destroyed by Russia and the USA working with Turkey. Assad stays in power and rebuilding starts in earnest as Russian petro-dollars pour into a solid place on the Mediterranean. Catherine the Greats dream is finally realized by the richest KGB agent to have ever lived.

5. Israel and the UN continue to spar but the problem seems to recede by the end of the year. Israel and the Palestinians find themselves in peace for much of the year.

Economic Predictions:

S&P 500: 2750
Dow: 22,000
NASDAQ: 5800
Russell 2000: 1510

Crude Oil: $75
Gold: $1200
EUR/Dollar: $0.98
10 Year Bond: 2.75

Sports Predictions:

NFL: Patriots
NBA: Golden State Warriors
MLB: Cleveland Indians
Premier League: Chelsea
Bundesliga: Hertha Berlin
NCAA Football: Clemson
NCAA Basketball: UCLA  

2016 Predictions a Look Back

Well here is my yearly look back at the Crystal Ball of Clairvoyance from last year. What really happened in blue.


1. Hillary Clinton beats Donald Trump in a landslide victory. The Donald wins only the southern states but does not carry any of the key battleground states and loses Florida quite handily. He only gets about 9% of the Hispanic vote and it turns into a referendum on immigration. The rise of the Hispanic voter becomes the key issue in politics this year. The GOP barely holds onto the Senate but retains the House with only a few notable losses.  
Wow I strait up missed this one with Trump beating her fairly handily in the electoral but losing the worthless popular vote. The Hispanic vote didn't seem to matter at all with their turnout down. I did get the GOP holding the Senate and House though.

2. The GOP Congress finally gets some things done now that Paul Ryan is in charge. They send a bunch of symbolic bills that are defeated by a lame-duck Obama. The reactionary wing of the GOP calls for Ryan's ouster by the end of the year.
Some symbolic bills were sent in but it seems that they didn't do much of anything. 2017 will be a far different story.

3. Obamacare is dealt a blow from Democrats who try to alter it after hearing it from their constituents who are having trouble with high co-pays. Insurance companies mostly pull out of the exchanges and the price of health insurance does not go down by any appreciable margin.
Got this one as co-pays go sky high and health insurance companies flee the exchanges en mass.

4. Obama becomes very active at first but peters out as he takes many foreign trips. Almost all of the news will be about the Election and he quietly works well with the Ryan Congress. Trump and Hillary suck the air out of the room and Obama's ego is bruised.
Obama did take a few foreign trips but I think he will be very active in the last weeks of office as he grasps for a legacy, any legacy. Trump and Hillary did suck all the air out of the room.

5. Hillary is indited but the FBI does not pursue the case until after the election. She pretty much gets out of any blame for the illegal email server and it becomes a non-issue after the election.
She wasn't indited and it will become a non-issue after the election.

6. The US becomes slightly less partisan by the end of the year with both parties staying away from the extremes after Trump implodes.
Hmm America might become less partisan going forward but I doubt it.


1. ISIS starts to collapse as recruits leave the fold and the bombing starts to get results. The Iraqi army pushes ISIS out of Iraq and regains a firm grip on their country. However, ISIS becomes even stronger outside of the remnants of the "Caliphate" as young radical Islamists fight the West from the comfort of their own homes. Several more terrorist attacks are planned and carried out but nothing as big as the Paris attacks happens in 2016.
Got this one mostly right as ISIS is almost out of Iraq. However, they are new arguably stronger because as the German attack shows it just takes a radical and a truck to cause mayhem. Luckily there was nothing as big as Paris but Nice came close.

2. The Chinese economy slows but does not enter a recession. A mix of stimulus and number fudging carries them throughout the year. The Chinese stock market gyrates wildly but ends the year down only 2% from the start of the year.
Close but the Chinese stock market got clobbered in the early part of the year and basically ended the year near where it started.

3. Oil prices stay low throughout the year but spike briefly as the Saudi/Iranian crisis looms. There is much posturing and sabre rattling but there is no outright warfare between the two. However the Sunni-Shia divide becomes the defining characteristic between the Great Powers going forward. The Sunni side is championed by the Saudis and the gulf states and Iran champions the Shiite powers. Both lead states are backed with petro-dollars and both now have a free hand due to the Iranian nuclear deal. A clandestine nuclear program is found in Saudi Arabia and an arms race begins.
Oil prices stayed low, went lower, and then spiked. Also the Saudi vs Iran thin simmers but hasn't blowen over yet. No clandestine nukes found in Saudi Arabia as of this time.

4. Russian power finally extends into the Mediterranean as Syria falls into their sphere of influence. By the end of the year the Syrian war becomes the "Russian Vietnam" with advisers training and re-arming Assads troops. Russian MIGs fly more sorties then the Western powers combined. Assad's troops push back ISIS and retake much of Syria while a massive Russian presence looms in the Levant.
Hit this one right on the head. The Russians now have a Syrian puppet after turning Aleppo into Berlin circa 1945. They also get to dictate terms in any peace talks going forward. Syrian adventurism is working out for Putin so far.

Economic Predictions:

S&P 500: 2300 2241 (close more or less)

Dow: 18100 19788 (wow way off)
Nasdaq: 5700 5385 (hmm shot too high)

Crude Oil: $65 58.57 (I bet we see $60 next year though)
Gold: $1200 $1151 (again a bit too high)
EUR/Dollar: 1.24 1.05 (big miss)
10 Yr Bond: 2.54 2.45 (close again)

Sports Predictions:
NFL: Arizona Cardinals Denver Broncos

NBA: Golden State Warriors Cleveland Cavs
MLB: San Fransisco Giants Chicago Cubs! (the end times near)
NHL: Montreal Canadiens Pittsburgh Penguins
Premier League: Arsenal Leicester City!?
Bundesliga: Borussia Dortmund (probably Bayern Munich though) yeah Bayen
NCAA Football: Alabama Crimson Tide Alabama Crimson Tide
NCAA Basketball: Kansas Villanova!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Can Trump-ism be Called Common Sense or Street-Corner Conservatism?

Hmm this is a very interesting article.
Indeed, Trump was so at variance with the mainstream of the intellectual conservative movement on these issues that he modified his political identity. “I really am a conservative,” he said last February. “But I’m also a commonsense person. I’m a commonsense conservative. We have to be commonsense conservatives. We have to be smart.” Common sense in this understanding is opposed to the theoretical and academic analysis that has led conservatives to nonsensical and unpopular positions because they are beholden to speculative conclusions or to creedal dogma.
I think common sense conservatism would have saved the GOP from shutting the government down in 2013 due to Ted Cruz being a moron. There was no way that they could have de-funded Obamacare, and even if by some miracle they did, Obama would have simply vetoed it. It was pretty much the most non-common sense thing they could have done and that's what they did. In fact every one of those repeal Obamacare votes that failed could be an example of dogmatic conservatism. This is an interesting passage.
When Donald Trump and Mike Pence arranged for Carrier to retain some of the jobs it had previously announced would move to Mexico, adherents to free market ideology roundly criticized the move as cronyism. But, as has so often been the case this year, these thinkers lacked a constituency. They found themselves defending the economic basis of Walmart rather than the livelihoods of the people who shop there. The Carrier deal was popular not only with Carrier employees but also with voters. It was a textbook example of street corner conservatism: deviation from principle in the pursuit of tangible goods. Arguments from theory or economic calculation had no purchase because the street corner conservative thinks not in terms of producers and consumers but in terms of citizens and foreigners.
Yeah it is something I like to call economic nationalism. Other countries practice it all the time and manipulate their currency, labor and capital markets in order to make the most of it. If Mexico really wanted to help their people they would increase their minimum wage by fiat to match ours. They won't because jobs and capital goods would stop flowing their way. An intellectual conservative would say cheap Mexican goods brings prices down everywhere and is good for everyone. But those cheap-assed goods come at the cost of jobs for people living in this country. A street-corner Conservative would want America first and actually do things how Mexico, China, and Japan does. They benefit their citizens first and foremost. It seems Trump might do just that. 

Even Putin is Going After the Democrats on Their Sore Loser Status #GreatGame

This new rapprochement with Putin is going to be interesting in terms of the Great Game.
"The current administration and the leadership of the Democratic Party are trying to blame all their failures on external factors," said Putin.
"(We are talking about) a party which has clearly forgotten the original meaning of its own name. They (the Democrats) are losing on all fronts and looking elsewhere for things to blame. In my view this, how shall I say it, degrades their own dignity. You have to know how to lose with dignity."
A Russia/US axis against China would be an interesting development indeed. It really smacks of the Cold War as well.

Hmm The "Trump Technique" of Increasing Competition Might be What He Does to Lower Drug Prices

Hmm he seems to be doing this for Boeing vs. Lockheed Martin but he could easily use it for drug prices.
One thing I always like to do like if I'm selling something or if I'm trying to rent something, I always like to create competition because it makes you feel better. And sometimes it's even a perceived competition. But the other side should know there's competition.
What could this mean for drug prices? I think he might either cut the patent length of a drug from 20 years to something quicker. He might also cut down the exclusivity of biotechs from the 12 years they have now. This would be a disaster for the entire drug industry because if will be hard for many drugs to recoup their development costs if they didn't have a long period of time in which to sell them. Margins will be squeezed all over the industry and most investigational stage biotechs would need to close their doors because making just one or two drugs will not be very profitable at all.

However, if this move corresponds to a quicker path to market that his new FDA chief might be into it might all might come out in the wash. If a company can bring a drug onto market with like 18 months of investigation that mostly revolved around safety then they don't need a billion dollars and nearly 12 years! to get from lab to market. The drug company will have recurring costs of investigating ongoing efficacy but that can be handled much easier as more drugs come onto market at a quicker pace.

The law of the marketplace would weed out the weak drugs and the companies that sell them. Then the more efficacious drugs will still sell very well and rise to the top. The drug industry will more reflect other industries in which competition keeps prices lower. But the result would be R&D spend would go down and margins would shrink but more drugs would be floating around for each malady. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Hmm 1950s Style Market? Stephen Suttmeier of Bank of America Merrill Lynch Thinks So

I would love for this to be true.
Suttmeier points out that much like today, rising bond yields also corresponded to a surge in equities in the 1950s. By the time bond yields moved to 5 or 6 percent in the 1960s, the S&P 500 had rallied about 460 percent over the decade or so.
"That bull run into the mid-1960s was actually an S&P secular bull trend that was associated with a low and rising interest rate environment," Suttmeier said. "That is how we're set up right here. "
Money is certainly going to move out of bonds and into stocks as we continue to go higher.

Battle of the Billionaires: Dems Money People Move from Writing Checks to Taking over Establishment #SorryBernie

I guess just writing a big check is no longer enough.
Politico reported on December 8 that billionaire donor Tom Steyer has expressed interest in running for governor of California in 2018, billionaire donor J.B. Pritzker wants to run for governor of Illinois, and multimillionaire John Morgan may run for governor of Florida.
Billionaire Democratic donor Stephen Bittel isn’t waiting until 2018 to claim a top position within the party, but is currently using the influence his donations have provided to give himself the position of Florida Democratic Party chair. Bittel’s Machiavellian ascent to top ranks of the Florida Democratic Party incited outrage among Bernie Sanders supporters, who are pushing to remove the corrupt influence wealthy and corporate donors have on the party.
Sorry Bernie Bros your party is going to be taken over by the big money men to combat the billionaires on the Trump administration. The idea that the small Democratic Socialist rising to power in the Dems might just have been a one time deal. 

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Dems Really are the Job Destroyers: Fires Entire Media Center Staff One Week Before Christmas

I guess these are the heads they decided to have roll.
With Christmas days away, nearly every member of the Senate Democratic Media Center has been fired, a senior Democratic aide confirmed to Fox News. Schumer swung the axe on Friday, according to Politico, which first obtained “goodbye” emails from staffers, including some with decades' experience.
The move comes amid plans to revamp the unit, which handles video content, in an effort to help the Senate Democratic caucus get their message out in the New Year. The party not only lost the presidential race, it failed to capture the Senate or House and lost state legislative races throughout the country.
Read, younger and hipper I should think. I'm not sure how that will break them out of the East/West Coast+ Blue City trap they have themselves in though. More celebrity videos that the rest of America seems to tune out is not something special or new.

Monday, December 19, 2016

It looks Like the Celebrities Trying to Turn the GOP Electors was Yet Another Colossal Failure

It seems that celebrities can't do anything right anymore.
But when the electors gathered across the country Monday, this plot backfired embarrassingly — more electors defected from Hillary Clinton than from Trump.
As of Monday afternoon, Clinton had lost four electors from states she won — three of whom instead cast their votes for former Secretary of State Colin Powell, while the other voted for Faith Spotted Eagle, an activist involved in protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline
Yes, after shooting their video and setting up an SNL skit they ended up costing Hillary 4 electoral college votes.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Oy Vay! 30% of Jews Backed Trump?

That is the highest Jewish vote for a Republican since 1988.
An estimated 30 percent of American Jews voted for Trump, the highest Jewish vote for a Republican since 1988. Among religious Jews, anecdotal evidence suggests, support for Trump was overwhelming. But most Jewish Republican leaders backed Hillary Clinton or minor candidates in the general election while opposing Trump in terms that often climbed the walls of hysteria.
I didn't know that these Jewish neocons mentioned above went after Bannon with such fervor. However, it seems that Bannon isn't an anti-Semite after all.
As it happens, I have spent some time with Steve Bannon, and I—like other Jews of his acquaintance—observe that he is exuberantly pro-Israel and as friendly to Jews as any Gentile I know. After reading Podhoretz’s accusation, I examined every article published on Bannon’s Breitbart website during the past years containing the search terms “Israel” or “Jews” and found that all were pro-Israel and friendly to Jews without a single exception. Facts are facts, and Commentary’s shrillness stems from hysteria more than outrage. 
I figured most of the Alt-Right and others in the right wing of the GOP were wildly pro-Israel and the anti-Israel people were on the far left. Almost all of the anti-Semitic nonsense coming out the US were from academics like Joy Karega and denizens of the far left on both sides of the Atlantic.

Is Big Climate Change Going to be Taken Apart with a Claw-Hammer? This Writer, Francis Menton Thinks so

I'm pretty sure the "insert nice place to visit" Round of the Climate Change Agreements will be a dismal failure but this might be true as well.
So what can we predict about where the climate scare is going?  Among members of the environmental movement, when their heads stop exploding, there are plenty of predictions that this will be terrible for the United States:  international ostracism, loss (to China!) of "leadership" in international climate matters, and, domestically, endless litigation battles stalling attempts to rescind or roll back regulations.  I see it differently.  I predict a high likelihood of substantial collapse of the global warming movement, both domestically and internationally, over the course of the next couple of years.
I think the funding will go from the government to the private sector but that legitimacy thing is going to hurt them big time. Endless funding by a willing Obama White House, that will be replaced by a tight-fisted Trump White House, will put lots of pressure on pro-Climate Change Billionaires like Tom Steyer. So the idea of "these words are backed with the full faith and credit of the United States Government" will be changed to words backed by a billionaires cashola. Just doesn't have the same amount of legitimacy as before.

2500 Year Old City Found on Top of a Greek Mountain

Hmm I wonder what strange things this city holds?
An international team of Swedish and Greek archaeologists discovered the remains of a former metropolis located 190 miles north of Athens. The 2,500-year-old lost city is buried underground, yet it is high in the sky on the Strongilovoúni hill on the great Thessalian plains.
My money is on Iron Golems.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

I Know Richard Sherman is a Blowhard but I think He should be Football Commissioner After Reading This

I always knew he was a very smart, sophisticated guy (and seems like a giant asshole) but this is one interesting take on Thursday Night football.
I guess this is what happens when you have people in suits who have never played the game at this level dictating the schedule. I’d like to put Roger Goodell in pads for a late game on a Sunday, in December, in Green Bay, on the frozen tundra — then see what time he gets to the office on Monday morning, knowing that he would have to suit up again on Thursday.
Then maybe he’d understand….
I think Thursday Night games are a bad idea and no-one should be playing a physically demanding game as football on a short week. Sherman says that there should be a mandatory bi-week before a Thursday game and they should get rid of a Pre-season game to make up for it. That sounds like a great idea. Give the players the same amount of time to heal as if it was a Sunday night game. Seems like a simple fix.

Why Obamacare Failed in a Nutshell: Vox does a Great Job of Reporting it

I read Vox as one of my trips out of the echo-chamber into the liberal blogosphere and this article summed up exactly why Obamacare failed.
Oller renewed 59-year-old Ruby Atkins’s Obamacare coverage just after lunchtime on a Tuesday. Atkins and her husband received a monthly tax credit that would cover most of their premium. But they would still need to contribute $244 each month — and face a $6,000 deductible.
Atkins said she had insurance before the Affordable Care Act that was significantly more affordable, with $5 copays and no deductible at all. She said she paid only $200 or $300 each month without a subsidy.
The deductible left Atkins exasperated. “I am totally afraid to be sick,” she says. “I don’t have [that money] to pay upfront if I go to the hospital tomorrow.”
Atkins’s plan offers free preventive care, an Obamacare mandate. But she skips mammograms and colonoscopies because she doesn’t think she’d have the money to pay for any follow-up care if the doctors did detect something. 
So basically Ms. Atkins pays $244 a month for a chance to pay less than $6000 for care. She actually skips the preventive care because it might put her on the hook for $1000s of out-of-pocket costs. Everyone talks about how Obamacare increased coverage, and had subsidies to help you pay premiums, but that $6000 deductible is outrageous. Why have insurance if you are going to have to pay full freight for almost everything anyway? That is why Obamacare has been a disaster and needs to change.

Under Trumps Possible FDA Chief Developing Drugs Might Just get Way Cheaper

If this guy implements this change that $1 billion dollars and 10 year time frame to bring a drug to market just got way cheaper.
The first potential FDA chief appointee leaked by the Trump transition team is Jim O’Neill. Managing director of Peter Thiel’s Mithril Capital, O’Neill has publicly supported proposals to do away with the FDA’s requirement for phase 2 and 3 trials. Instead, he favors “progressive approval” of drugs and other medical technologies.
This will open a whole lot of innovation since the only bar they will have to pass is safety. Make sure the drug doesn't kill or maim the patient and then let it rip. The plan calls for a Phase 4 where the company must study efficacy data once the drug is on the market. This is a kind of "testing in production" model but it will get drugs to market faster than the 10 years it takes normally. When you take something breakthrough to market much faster it will strait-up save/extend lives.

The other thing it would do is break some of the stranglehold big pharma has on prices. If a company doesn't need $1 billion and 10 years to bring a biologic to market then they don't have to do profit sharing deals or whatever with big pharma. That argument that they have to charge so much because it took so much capital to develop would be moot. That big moat for big pharma will get smaller.

It will also allow targeted therapies to come to market. A company doesn't need to have a huge addressable patient population in order to make a drug. They just need to make sure it helps patients and extends there lives. So a drug for instance for Duchenne muscular dystrophy doesn't need to take years to develop and have a bunch of people afflicted with it plead with the FDA for approval. They could have had a few of them on the market and the FDA would have stopped the sales of the ones that didn't help those kids move around better.

Finally, drug prices should be put in check since you won't need $1 billion and 10 years to bring anything to market. Having ongoing efficacy studies sounds expensive though. However it won't be anything like moving something from breakthrough to approval nowadays. So overall we would get more therapies and cheaper prices but the drug companies would have lower margins. Sounds like a win for many parts of the industry and especially for the patient.

Botox for Depression? Allergan Might have Yet Another Use for It

Well it seems that Botox might help with depression for some reason or another.
Overall, though, the results are promising — Reichenberg and Magid found that depression scores dropped 42 percent in patients who received Botox, compared with only 15 percent in participants who had a placebo. As Reichenberg noted, the Botox’s effect was as good as an anti-depressant.
The article points out that some of the other depression treatments have some serious side-effects as well. I'm pretty sure no one will be killing themselves after getting a bunch of Botox treatments. Also I wonder where it will be injected to get this higher response rate?

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Strait-up Hagiography by Historians on Obama's Legacy #SaintObama

I'm not sure how I got through this whole thing but it is really a case-in-point on how fervent the echo-chamber encased liberal academic sees the world.
People will see the sheer caliber of this man. The grace and poise with which he conducted himself in unbelievably difficult circumstances; the way he withstood abuse and disrespect with extraordinary calm and goodwill. He will in his post-presidency become a symbol, maybe somebody we need more than when he was president, to remind us of what it is to be dignified in public life. Especially if this hideous monster who’s succeeding him continues to despoil the public culture.
We have to remember, Obama is leaving office having been elected twice by a majority and with approval ratings that are matching Reagan’s. If he had a successor who could continue that, then he would be in the epic position to be the architect of the entire twenty-first century.
It may be, in my view, that the counterreaction is so perverse and so destructive that we will return to this figure as the cornerstone of our future. And he is young. At some point in the future, with the possible bloodshed and civil unrest in this country that we’re about to engage in, he may be a key person as a post-president—a bit like a monarch who might be able to hold us all together.
This part is what Andrew Sullivan wrote. He sounds like someone that has an Obama altar in his house or something. It's almost like he wants to see bloodshed and civil unrest (which I am almost certain will never come to pass) so that he can pine for the halcyon days of the Pax Obama. Maybe he should look into making Obama divine like they did for the former Emperors of Rome.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Jade Helm Part Deux! C-130 Seen Circling Low Above Midtown Manhattan: Coup d'état Against Trump or Routine Exercises? #LookOutDonald

Hmm "routine military exercises" you say?
A military aircraft that was seen circling midtown Manhattan in New York City on Tuesday afternoon was taking part in a routine exercise, an official for the National Guard says.
“That was a standard military training flight from the New York Air National Guard from the 106th Rescue Wing, and they are based at Gabreski Air National Guard Base in Westhampton in Long Island,” Col. Rich Goldenberg, public information officer for the New York National Guard, told Yahoo News.
A military exercise involving training flights flying this low over Manhattan is more of a “rare occurrence,” Goldenberg said, “but it does occur from time to time.”
It looks like a regular C-130 Hercules at first glance but if it was an AC-130 Spectre Gunship then we have some room for concern. I'm pretty sure they couldn't get away with it firing that Bofors gun a few times at Trump Tower and saying it was a gas leak explosion or something. But maybe there is a rogue "terrorist" at the helm (or maybe mind-controlled Project Ultra types) or even a remote controlled version. That compromised Gunship would then fire on Trump Tower when Pence is there and wipe them both out before they are sworn in. 

Then what would happen? Would Obama stay President for a few months until there was a re-vote? Would Hillary become President by default? Would Mitch McConnell become President? Or maybe it is just a surveillance flight as part of the security detail for the President-elect. That would make much more sense then a Coup d'état because Jade Helm turned out to be a nothing. I bet this is the same kind of thing but its fodder for Conspiracy nuts like me.

Wait the Electors of the Electoral College Want a Secret Intelligence Briefing?

Yeah I'm sure all of these idiots have a TS Clearance so it would be an easy sell.
Ten members of the Electoral College have signed a letter urging the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper to provide them with classified briefings on Russia’s hacking and cyber involvement in the U.S. elections.
Christine Pelosi, Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi’s daughter, who serves as an elector from California, spearheaded drafting the letter and referred to the request as a “day pass” so that electors could be fully read-in before they cast their votes next week.
I think they need day care and not a "day pass." They really think they are so important that the NSA will give them classified information so they can feel better about casting their votes for Hillary? She won California so Ms. Pelosi (nepotism much?) will cast her vote against Trump anyway. Why do they need to get a "day pass?" Is is just so they can leak whatever Top Secret findings on the hacking to the press? 

In any case there will be a Congressional committee on the hacking. They will probably find Russia backed groups hacked Hillary's email (along with like 8 other countries and the NSA,) the DNC had terrible Cyber-security, and Podesta got his email spear-fished. Then the Dems will blame the election on Russia and not do any changes to re-connect with working class voters. Then they will run some easily beatable person like Elizabeth Warren in 2020 and get walloped again. I think 8 years of Trump and a filibuster-proof margin in the Senate looks very do-able for the GOP with these idiots running things.

Climate Scientists Copying Government Data to Non-government Servers? Is that legal?

Hmm this doesn't sound like it is legal.
“Something that seemed a little paranoid to me before all of a sudden seems potentially realistic, or at least something you’d want to hedge against,” said Nick Santos, an environmental researcher at the University of California at Davis, who over the weekend began copying government climate data onto a nongovernment server, where it will remain available to the public. “Doing this can only be a good thing. Hopefully they leave everything in place. But if not, we’re planning for that.”
That data was generated by tax payer money. How are they able to just put it in the open like that? I think it is a good idea to have the data backed up for the sake of posterity but it walking off like that is a cause for concern.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Economic Outlook Skews Directly Toward Party Lines

It seems like the green-shoots are growing into a jungle if you are a GOPer.
Optimism about the six-month economic outlook rocketed to 86.6 among Republicans from 50.9 just before the election, hitting the highest level since the IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index was launched in 2001. Independents' view of the six-month outlook jumped 12.7 points to 58.5, highest since January 2004. But sentiment among Democrats plunged 32.1 points to 28.2, lowest since October 2008, just before Barack Obama was elected.
I guess the Dems think Trump will tank the economy for some reason or another. This rally has been great for my bottom line but I guess there isn't as much stock ownership in those Blue spots on that Red map.

Media Matters is Finally Going to do a Service: Going After Fake News and Conspiracy Theories

I guess they got tired of watching Fox News and are instead going to do something that might do some good instead.
Angelo Carusone, currently the organization's executive vice president, will take over as president. The group, known for taking on what they argue is misinformation in conservative media, particularly on Fox News, will enter a “new era,” focusing on the likes of Breitbart, the “alt-right”, conspiracy theories and fake news. 
So they can get out in front of things and vet them for veracity. It seems that the Alt-right, Facebook, or the MSM has no intention of doing this so someone has to step up.

Monday, December 05, 2016

Wait, What? Amazon is getting into the Grocery Business to the Tune of 2000 stores in a Decade?

This is a strange development indeed.
Amazon shares were up slightly after reports that the e-commerce giant envisions opening more than 2,000 of its Amazon Fresh grocery stores over the next decade. Earlier Monday, the company announced the launch of its new Amazon Go stores, which will have no registers. Instead, shoppers scan into the store with their free Amazon Go app, shop as normal, and leave the store with the items billed to their account.
I always thought this would be the store of the future. You just pick up what you need and walk out of the store and your account is automatically billed. However, going head-to-head against bigger grocery stores might be difficult since those stores provide more choice. Maybe if these Amazon Fresh/Go stores have a smaller footprint there would be more around. More of a bodega than an actual Kroger or Safeway.

I would love to pop into an Amazon Fresh and buy European cheeses, fresh baked bread and deli cold cuts and just walk out of the door with them and it charges my Amazon account. However, I would probably not go there to buy detergent or ingredients for a meal unless things were way cheaper then Safeway or Foodland.

Apple Watch looks Like a Dismal Failure with Shipments Down 70%: I Think the Wrist Watch is Turning into the Pocket Watch

I guess people just don't want to be Dick Tracy anymore.
Eight-five percent of the wearable technology market is comprised of "basic" devices that don't run third-party apps, according to quarterly data from the International Data Corporation (IDC). Simple wearables saw double-digit growth during the third quarter, IDC said, but when smartwatches were added to the mix, the market grew only 3.1 percent from a year ago.
That was bad news for Apple, who saw wearable shipments fall 71 percent year-over-year in the quarter, to 1.1 million units. Apple does not break out its Apple Watch sales. 
I think they might just be falling due to the trend of people are just not wearing watches. Or they are simply wearing them as jewelry and not actually using them for anything other than telling time. I know luxury watch sales seem to be dipping as well.
Further proof that the high-end market is in decline is the fact that sales of watches valued at more than 3,000.- CHF (export price) have dropped by around 20%, in the same way as low-end watches. The medium range, i.e. watches between 500.- and 3,000.- CHF have been the most resilient, with a drop in value of “only” 7.1%.
I think the cell phone time display is turning the wrist watch into the pocket watch. It won't be long before the wrist watch will just be the province of older people and collectors.

Here we go Again: Cop Shoots Unarmed Black Guy in the Back 5 Times in the back and Gets a Mistrial

This should have been a slam-dunk case because the cop is clearly shooting an unarmed man running away from him in the back.
A judge declared a mistrial Monday afternoon in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man at the hands of a South Carolina former patrolman, after the jury said they could not come to a unanimous verdict.
In a statement read by Circuit Judge Clifton Newman, the jury said "We as the jury regret to inform the court" that they were unable to come "to a unanimous decision in the case of the state versus Michael Slager" after a day of questions and deliberation. 
How was one of the jurors deadlocked in this thing? The video clearly shows the cop shooting the guy running away from him 5 times like that scene in Band of Brothers. The video evidence was clear but there was still a mistrial. There should have been at least a verdict of manslaughter. In any case this really does look like there was no justice for poor Walter Scott.