Archive for September, 2008

30
Sep
08

Drink Heavily, Go Green

Nancy Pelosi could not resist the urge to blame the current mess on the Repuklicans and tout the greatness of Democrap demi-god Bill Clinton. As such, the bail out of the economy… bailed out and nothing got done. How can we put things in perspective?

If you had purchased $1,000 of Delta Air Lines (DAL) stock one year ago, you would have about $49 left. With Fannie Mae (FNM), you would have around $2.50 left of the original $1,000. With AIG, you would have much less than $15 left. But, if you had purchased $1,000 worth of beer one year ago, drunk all of the beer, then turned in the cans for the aluminum recycling REFUND, you would have $214 cash. Based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink heavily and recycle.

29
Sep
08

Another White Guy Dancing

For the love of God…

29
Sep
08

How Big Is The Bailout?

You’ve probably heard about this ginormous bailout thing that the gubbermint is tossing to the financial sector. Big numbers have been thrown about. You may have heard something like “$2,000 for every man, woman and child in the US”. $700 Billion. Here’s some relative terms for you:

  • The Food Stamps program will cost $39 billion for 2008
  • Medicaid is $202 billion
  • The behemoth know as Social Security is $612 billion
  • $186 billion for the Iran and Afghanistan wars
  • Congressional “earmarks” or “pork” is a paltry $16.5 billion

Go ahead, read the chart. Have a drink…

28
Sep
08

Hurricane Head Scratcher

That’s a projected track of Hurricane Kyle. For those of you having trouble deciphering the map, Kyle, a Category 1 hurricane, is forecast to make landfall late Sunday or early Monday near the border between Maine and Canada. It’s rather difficult to associate Canada with anything “tropical”, yet this tropical storm is going to give the Canadian Maritimes a good soaking, for sure, eh. I’m ready for this storm season to be over.

28
Sep
08

There Be Pirates

There’s also a looming standoff of epic proportions. Follow along, if you will. a short time ago, the Ukrainian vessel MV Faina put to sea, destined for Kenya. Ukrainian Defence Minister Yury Yekhanurov confirmed that 33 Russian T-72 tanks and “a substantial quantity of ammunition” were aboard the MV Faina. And that vessel had to sail near Somalia to reach its destination. Those waters are not exactly known as peaceful.

Sure enough, Somai pirates captured the boat and have it held in the port of Hobyo. A Russian navy vessel has been dispatched to the scene. And now the USS Howard, a destroyer, is nearing the area. The pirates have warned France not to get involved, too. A diplomatic solution does not appear to be possible. Somalia has been without a functioning central government for 17 years and has suffered from continual civil strife.

26
Sep
08

Summing Up The Coming Election

I was browsing this post at Slashdot and saw this response from a contributor:

When provided with two shitty options, we’ll always end up with shit.

Yep. Exactly.

26
Sep
08

Police: Duty, Responsibility, Efficiency?

The court system in the US has ruled on many occasions that police, schools, the state, etc. have no duty to protect its constituents. This actually runs in direct opposition to what anti-gun folks would have you believe: that the police will save your hind quarters. They *can* do it, but they are under no obligation (other than their personal morals) to do so. Here are some legal citations for you:

  • Castle Rock v. Gonzales, 545 U.S. 748
  • Barillari v. City of Milwaukee 533 N.W.2d 759
  • Bowers v. DeVito 686 F.2d 616
  • DeShaney v. Winnebago County Department of Social Services 489 U.S. 189
  • Ford v. Town of Grafton 693 N.E.2d 1047
  • Warren v. District of Columbia 444 A.2d 1 — “…a government and its agencies are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen…”
  • Riss v. New York, 22 N.Y.2d 579,293 N.Y.S.2d 897, 240 N.E.2d 806
  • Lynch v. N.C. Dept. of Justice, 376 S.E. 2nd 247 — “Law enforcement agencies and personnel have no duty to protect individuals from the criminal acts of others; instead their duty is to preserve the peace and arrest law breakers for the protection of the general public.”
  • Zeling v. County of Los Angeles, 02 S.O.S. 2400

I’m sure that there are a lot of others. The reason that I mention this is that there is a large segment of the US population that believes that the cops are somehow legally bound to save your bacon. They are not. If they happen to get there in time to prevent something really bad from happening, good for them. However, their mandate is protecting the general welfare, not the individual version. In very basic terms, it also means that the individual is primarily responsible for themselves. The Palm Bay, Florida police department seems to have recognized this component. They have proposed a cost cutting policy that would suspend investigation of crimes involving victim’s stupidity.

If you leave your garage door open all day and somebody comes and steals your lawnmower or tools… you’ll get a case number, but no unit will roll to investigate. If you leave your car unlocked in your driveway and it gets vandalized or stolen… same deal. At some point, folks do need to participate in protecting themselves, right?