Friday, September 02, 2011

GOP Columnist Finally States What The GOP Really Thinks

It's nice finally getting a bit of clarification:
"It is profoundly antisocial and un-American to empower the nonproductive segments of the population to destroy the country -- which is precisely why Barack Obama zealously supports registering welfare recipients to vote," Vadum, the author of a book published by World Net Daily that attacks the now-defunct community organizing group ACORN, writes in a column for the American Thinker.

"Encouraging those who burden society to participate in elections isn't about helping the poor," Vadum writes. "It's about helping the poor to help themselves to others' money. It's about raw so-called social justice. It's about moving America ever farther away from the small-government ideals of the Founding Fathers."

Most conservative criticism of voter registration drives aimed at poor and minority communities has been under the guise of worries about voter fraud. Vadum's column is notable because he isn't just pretending to be worried about the nearly non-existent threat of in-person voter fraud -- he just doesn't think poor people should be voting.
The term "nonproductive segments of the population" is a pretty-elastic concept in an advanced society, where most people perform work that is arguably nonproductive. How, for example, for would you classify "Hollywood"? Or "Wall Street"? Or "Silicon Valley"? I would include GOP columnists under the "nonproductive" description.

I suspect that many of these GOP columnists would classify anyone earning less than $100,000.00 per year as "nonproductive". What's the quote attributed to Herbert Hoover?: “any man who's not a millionaire by age 40 is a failure”. Why not restrict the franchise to millionaires? Let's get some more clarification!

Maybe A Blessing In Disguise

G. sends out word of another Obama "cave":
Statement by the President on the Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards

Over the last two and half years, my administration, under the leadership of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, has taken some of the strongest actions since the enactment of the Clean Air Act four decades ago to protect our environment and the health of our families from air pollution. From reducing mercury and other toxic air pollution from outdated power plants to doubling the fuel efficiency of our cars and trucks, the historic steps we’ve taken will save tens of thousands of lives each year, remove over a billion tons of pollution from our air, and produce hundreds of billions of dollars in benefits for the American people.

At the same time, I have continued to underscore the importance of reducing regulatory burdens and regulatory uncertainty, particularly as our economy continues to recover. With that in mind, and after careful consideration, I have requested that Administrator Jackson withdraw the draft Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards at this time. Work is already underway to update a 2006 review of the science that will result in the reconsideration of the ozone standard in 2013. Ultimately, I did not support asking state and local governments to begin implementing a new standard that will soon be reconsidered.
I guess I'm supposed to be annoyed, but I'm thinking instead that it may be a kind of blessing. Make no mistake: no one has ever established a "safe" level of ozone, and it's probably an unattainable goal - ozone is always destructive. Once you start getting to lower standards, however, you have to start worrying about emission sources you had ignored previously.

The paradigm of setting lower standards in order to achieve cleaner air may be reaching the end of its usefulness. With ozone, cause-and-effect relationships can be difficult to establish. Ozone can appear far downwind of emission sources, including natural sources of organics, like forests.

I remember watching an ozone monitor in the winter of 1985/86 near Flagstaff, AZ. Concentrations of 75 ppb were being reached. Likely contributors of ozone precursors were the local forest, and distant Los Angeles. Tighter ambient air quality standards would do little to address emissions from either source.

Doorway Reprise?

Reading this, it sounds like CORE is going to present the Doorway again!:
Highlights from "The Doorway". The athletic contemporary and jazz movement is inspired by the different rooms in a Victorian mansion, and "The Doorway" follows the dark and quirky characters entangled within the house.
This video is featured on our Kickstarter project for the 2011 production of the show, and you can back the project before August 21, 2011 by visiting:
See "The Doorway" live this October!
October 21, 22 & 27, 28, 29, 2011
Benvenuti Performing Arts Center
4600 Blackrock Dr
Sacramento, Ca 95835

Music - "My People" The Presets

Just Curious What Talissa James Is Up To

A year ago, anyway....

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Ever So Subtle At The Pima County GOP!

Sending a message for all to hear:
Eyebrows shot up all over the country Thursday following news that that the Republican Party in Pima County, AZ -- home to Tucson and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' (D) district -- is raffling off a Glock similar to the one used to shoot Giffords in the head in January.

In Tucson, the condemnation of the plan was universal and bi-partisan.

"There's a woman who has a bullet in the brain and who everybody is wishing a full recovery," Brian Miller, the immediate past chair of the Pima County GOP told TPM. "I don't think that raffling off a firearm right now is probably the right way to go."

Miller says the people who took over the party -- and booted him from his position after he criticized local law enforcement for shooting a Marine in a controversial raid on his home in May -- are from the "my way or the highway" wing of the GOP who don't pay much thought to the political fallout from their actions.

While he said that raffling off a firearm to raise money is something he did himself when he ran (and lost) in the 2010 Republican primary in Gifford's district, it's not something he'd do now.

But it's the kind of thing the folks in charge of things at the Pima County GOP may become known for, and to the party's detriment, he said.

"The people who are running the Pima County GOP right now aren't exactly known for their ability to feel the political pulse," he said.

B-Smoove, Mistah Fab & Haunz ft. C.L. Chou - "Gone Ri Now"

I generally don't follow too much rap/hip-hop, but this effort is based, in part, in Sacramento, and I think I might even recognize one of the principal dancers! (It sure looks like Gabrielle Perez, e.g., center at 0:37. Maybe it is? And those little kids look - familiar!) So, it's all good!

Mesmerizing rhythm. I feel like dancing!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Calling It Like He Sees It

Putting The Blame Where It Belongs

Since I've been so busy at work, I've fallen behind on the blog, but I didn't want to let pass unremarked the recent casino fire in Monterrey, Mexico. I'm glad President Calderon aimed some of the blame at the United States. The U.S. is very culpable in the huge arms trade that has made Mexico practically ungovernable in places.

There is a natural coincidence of interests between the Second Amendment fanatics in the United States, and the Mexican drug cartels. It's all very nice to assert a right to bear arms, but it's foolish to assert this right without limitations when foreign-base interests are involved. The NRA and Los Zetas are in the same bed. It's only a matter of time before the cartels attempt to dominate the United States the same way they've come to dominate Mexico. The NRA will be the traitors leading this assault, and U.S. armed forces (Border Patrol, Army, Air Force, Navy) will be their first targets:
MONTERREY, Mexico (AP) - Mexican President Felipe Calderon declared three days of mourning Friday following the arson of a casino by presumed drug traffickers that killed 52, calling those responsible "true terrorists."

Armed assailants burst into the casino Thursday afternoon, swearing and shouting for customers and employees to get out. But many of the terrified victims fled farther inside the building, where they died trapped amid the flames and thick smoke that soon billowed out of the building.

Calderon described the incident as the worst attack on innocent civilians in recent memory. "We are not talking about an accident," he said in a televised nationwide address. "We are talking about true terrorists who have gone beyond all limits."

...Attorney General Leon Adrian de la Garza said a drug cartel was apparently responsible for the attack, though he didn't name which one. Cartels often extort casinos and other businesses, threatening to attack them or burn them to the ground if they refuse to pay.

It was the second time in three months that the Casino Royale was targeted. Gunmen struck it and three other casinos on May 25, spraying the building with bullets, but no was reported injured in that attack.

...Monterrey has seen bloody turf battles between the Zetas and Gulf cartels in recent months. Once Mexico's symbol of development and prosperity, the city is seeing this year's drug-related murders on a pace to double last year's and triple those of the year before.

Hurricane Katia, Its Helper, And An Uncertain Floridian Future

There are some indications that a small tropical storm will generate in the Gulf of Mexico over the next few days and linger off the coast of Louisiana before moving west to Texas. By itself, this storm shouldn’t be much of a problem for Tampa, Florida residents (except possibly for waves at the beach).

Nevertheless, I’m concerned that the simple presence of that tropical storm will remove an atmospheric pressure barrier that would ordinarily keep Hurricane Katia away from Florida. It’s possible that Katia could make a direct hit on Florida near Cape Canaveral around September 10th or 11th, and then cross the state and reappear in the Gulf of Mexico near Tampa. Even though such a storm would be seriously downgraded as it crossed the state, it would still disrupt life throughout the state, including the Tampa area (possible tornadoes, lots of rain, etc.). In addition, it might strengthen again over the Gulf of Mexico, and continue elsewhere on its path of mayhem.

So, we’ll need to keep an eye on Hurricane Katia and the as-yet unnamed Gulf of Mexico storm, until we better understand their intentions.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Current forecasts keep this newbie storm east of Florida, and east of the eastern U.S., so there are no anticipated worries for the U.S. (but there may eventually be troubles for Bermuda).

Carla Fleming "Heartbreaker" Music Video

I had no idea that Carla had been up to this!

All these fine ladies are (or recently were) from the Sacramento area. I don't know who the poor fellow is, but I feel for him....

Monday, August 29, 2011

Live-Blogging ABQ Storms - 08/29/11

(2:00 p.m. PDT) Weather disturbance associated with drier air -like a dry line - quickly moving in from the NW. Maybe some quick hit-and-run thunderstorms will come from it!

(2:30 p.m. PDT) About to strike ABQ!

(3:30 p.m. PDT) No radar! No radar? No radar! The radar equipment was struck by lightning! It's offline! NOW what am I gonna do?

They're Going After The National Weather Service Next

It's important to note that, in the United States, the National Weather Service ALONE operates the system of rawinsondes without which weather forecasting by ANYBODY in the United States, public or private, becomes impossible. AccuWeather can't function without the National Weather Service. Where would they get their data? Also, the National Weather Service is THE agency by which American weather forecasters interact with their international counterparts, of which there are many on this crowded globe. What happens overseas affects us, and vice versa.

Privatizing the National Weather Service IS NOT POSSIBLE! Even making the attempt will be far more expensive for everyone than the cost of the current system. And the weather service has always been, and remains, and always will remain a critical component of military readiness! People forget so fast!

So why do conservatives even bring up the subject of privatizing the National Weather Service? Are the rich THAT desperate for more and more and yet more loot that they consider even irreplaceable governmental functions - that safeguard even their lousy hides - to be dispensable? Remember, a truly-privatized weather service would withhold information from the public and provide the best information only to the highest bidder, perhaps at the cost of your poor, misinformed life!

This is truly, truly pathetic! What a disgrace conservatives are to this country!:
Although it might sound outrageous, the truth is that the National Hurricane Center and its parent agency, the National Weather Service, are relics from America’s past that have actually outlived their usefulness.

The National Weather Service (NWS) was founded in 1870. Originally, the NWS was not a public information agency. It was a national security agency and placed under the Department of War. The Service’s national security function has long since disappeared, but as agencies often do, however, it stuck around and managed to increase its budget.

Today the NWS justifies itself on public interest grounds. It issues severe weather advisories and hijacks local radio and television stations to get the message out. It presumes that citizens do not pay attention to the weather and so it must force important, perhaps lifesaving, information upon them. A few seconds’ thought reveals how silly this is. The weather might be the subject people care most about on a daily basis. There is a very successful private TV channel dedicated to it, 24 hours a day, as well as any number of phone and PC apps. Americans need not be forced to turn over part of their earnings to support weather reporting.

The NWS claims that it supports industries like aviation and shipping, but if they provide a valuable contribution to business, it stands to reason business would willingly support their services. If that is the case, the Service is just corporate welfare. If they would not, it is just a waste.

As for hurricanes, the insurance industry has a compelling interest in understanding them. In a world without a National Weather Service, the insurance industry would probably have sponsored something very like the National Hurricane Center at one or more universities. Those replacements would also not be exploited for political purposes.

As it stands today, the public is forced to pay more than $1 billion per year for the NWS. With the federal deficit exceeding a trillion dollars, the NWS is easily overlooked, but it shouldn’t be. It may actually be dangerous.

Relying on inaccurate government reports can endanger lives. Last year the Service failed to predict major flooding in Nashville because it miscalculated the rate at which water was releasing from dams there. The NWS continued to rely on bad information, even after forecasters knew the data were inaccurate. The flooding resulted in 22 deaths.

Private weather services do exist, and unsurprisingly, they are better than the NWS. When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, the National Weather Service was twelve hours behind AccuWeather in predicting that New Orleans would be affected. Unlike the NWS, AccuWeather provides precise hour-by-hour storm predictions, one of the reasons private industry supports them.

UFO Talk In NM

Here's an upcoming talk on an interesting subject:
A 90-minute public lecture entitled "America's UFO subculture and New Mexico" will be given on November 2 at Meadowlark Senior Center in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, by Norio Hayakawa, former director of a group called the Civilian Intelligence Network.

The group, for many years, has focused its study on how a segment of the population's "beliefs in UFOs" (as physical alien spacecraft) have been manipulated and, in some cases, may even have been created by the U.S. intelligence community as part of certain counterintelligence programs and operations.
There's talk that there's a big UFO base in Dulce, NM:
We took a look at the Gomez Ranch, the road by the Navajo River, and the imposing Archuleta Mesa. Gabe had found landing tracks and crawler marks near the site of the mutes, and was convinced that scientist Paul Bennewitz of Thunder Scientific Labs in Albuquerque, was definitely on the right track in his attempts to locate the underground alien facility in the vicinity of Dulce. No one knew for sure where the facility was located or how humans or aliens gained secret entry to the facility.
Actually, I think if there's a big UFO base anywhere in NM, it's in Rio Rancho. It would explain a lot: first of all, the surpassing strangeness of that place!

It's Time We All Told The Dan Lungrens Of The World That The Rich Need A Tax Hike

They plundered the economy for that money, and are holding it hostage. We have uses for that money and want to liberate it.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Filipino Lip Sync Contest Best!

Via Surly Comet.

Precocious Sacramento Youth

Always ready for a challenge:
A police bait car placed in a Sacramento neighborhood to lure would-be car thieves was stolen by a 10-year-old girl yesterday. Officers think the young lady did it after being dared by her friends.

San Francisco Day Trip

Following the "Cool Bus" towards San Francisco on Saturday morning.

First, a stop in Emeryville to eat.

Despite some fog in the neighborhood, for most of the day, San Francisco was warmer than expected.

A cool mural in Chinatown.

A funeral procession in Chinatown.

Ross Alley in Chinatown.

Where Fortune Cookies come from.

TransAmerica Pyramid.

Spaceship on the Embarcadero, with the Bay Bridge in the background.

Busker makes a human bridge.

Alcatraz, as seen from Pier 32.

Lolling with the pinnepids on Pier 32.

Bark! Bark!

It's easy to join the beach bums. Just climb over everyone!

Shopping on Pier 32. After seeing the beautiful merchandise on display at places like the San Francisco Music Box Company, the need to adhere to a budget began to feel very painful.

An unexpected and mysterious military guy in the crowd.

Cool building in the Flatiron style.