Wednesday, August 25, 2010

What is it?

I showed this picture the other day to tease you. Most of you knew the answer quickly. It is a set of masts from the Chicago marina. And, just to the north of the marina, at the Navy Pier, are relics from our bygone days -- the tall ships.

For more on the tall ships, read the post below.

Tall ships come to Chicago

Starting today, America's tall ships are in Chicago at the Navy Pier.

The creaking of the masts, ruffling of the sails, rhythmic movement port and starboard mesmerize us. These seaworthy craft gather to help us remember the stories by Jack London, the times of yesteryear when there were no cell phones, no transatlantic cable linking continents.

Whether you are touring the HMS Bounty, the Europa, the Raold Amundsen or any of the other 28 majestic tall ships, you can for the moment put the present out of mind and glory in the past and the preening ships gliding into a foreign port waiting for passengers for the next adventure.

Transcendent Tunes...From Paris

"It's A Wonderful World" sung with pathos and passion by Louis Armstrong, is a transcendent tune.
The world lost a magnificent song writer this week. George David Weiss. Who was George David Weiss? He wrote Louis' signature tune, along with "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" and "Can't Help Falling In Love." George died at the age of 89.
What's the definition of a 'classic' tune? A song that transcends trends; a song that remains entrenched and embedded in our our memory.
Thanks George. It's a Wonderful World.

The only religion that insists that church and state not be separated.

Islam: The Only Religion Protected and Defended by the American Left

Have liberals ever stood up for another religion?

Typical Elite thinking (and logically faulty). They just don’t get it

Couric: Mosque Opposition 'Islamophobia, Obamaphobia or Both'

Couric: Mosque Opposition 'Islamophobia, Obamaphobia or Both'

Never liked whale killers

Putin shoots gray whale with crossbow!

Tiny Frogs

Ultra-tiny frogs discovered living like faeries inside pitcher plants

One of the world's tiniest frogs has been discovered in Borneo. At 10-12 mm long, Microhyla nepenthicola may be micro, but its croak is loud. That's how researchers found them, swimming in tiny puddles of water captured by pitcher plants

Yesterday was a pretty good day against incumbents


Palin-backed candidate on verge of toppling AK Senate incumbent...

DNC spokesman can't name AK Dem Sen candidate...

The Good Life

ABC: 'Breaking News: President Obama Says "I'm Having a Great Time" On Vacation'...

Lobster, lobster, lobster...

LETTERMAN TURNS: 'He'll have plenty of time for vacations after his one term'...

Ideal Pub

On pubs

Christopher Howse writes -

The ideal pub has a large proportion of regulars, no amplified music – so it is always quiet enough to talk – barmaids who call everyone "dear", a good fire burning, a plain dining-room upstairs, pub games in the public bar, and a garden. This is not my idea, but George Orwell's, and he was right.

The George and Dragon in Hudswell, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, has gone one better by setting up a library, run by volunteers. To tell the truth, the whole pub is run by volunteers, like the village shop in Ambridge and other resorts of countryfolk. They know that life hangs together with a local pub, shop, school, church and library. . .

Maybe all those folks buying bullets were right…

EPA considering a regulation that will ban all traditional lead ammunition. This would basically end the shooting sports as we know it. Remember this is a no-win situation for us, because bullets made of materials other than lead are often considered armor piercing by law. Copper is your basic material, and copper is expensive, and has much poorer performance properties than lead.

Maybe Limbaugh was right…

Intel CEO Paul Otellini, who warned this week that the U.S. faces a huge tech decline.

Intel CEO: U.S. faces looming tech decline. “Intel chief executive Paul Otellini offered a depressing set of observations about the economy and the Obama administration Monday evening, coupled with a dark commentary on the future of the technology industry if nothing changes.”

Sort of sums it up

Dem Sen: Trillions in Debt, 'Nothing to Show for It'...

Sen. Michael Bennet’s recent appearance in Greeley, Colorado is sure to set political tongues wagging–Bennet is quoted as saying that though trillions of dollars of Federal debt has been incurred through spending since he was appointed to the Senate in January of 2009, “we have nothing to show for it”:

“We have managed to acquire $13 trillion of debt on our balance sheet” and, “in my view we have nothing to show for it.”

A sexual disaster for teenagers and English society

The last government spent £300 million on its Teenage Pregnancy Strategy, with the declared aim of halving pregnancies among under-18s by this year. According to the Office for National Statistics, the pregnancy rate among teenagers aged 15 to 17 when Labour came to power was 45 conceptions per 1,000; a decade on, it had barely changed. Indeed, figures published yesterday indicate that the rate has recently risen sharply, particularly among those under 16. Along with statistics from the Health Protection Agency, which recorded almost half a million new cases of sexually transmitted diseases in 2009, mostly among the young, the data confirm this country’s unassailable position as Europe’s trailblazer in sexual irresponsibility.

This is a failure of policy on an epic scale, the result of a 13-year social experiment that has proved an unmitigated disaster. Labour adopted the most simplistic of approaches, channelling all its energies and money into sex education programmes of dubious worth, while making contraception freely available – frequently without the knowledge of parents – to girls who were often under the age of consent. Ministers and officials reacted with horror to any suggestion that moral issues might come into play, while the notion of abstinence campaigns, widely deployed in the US, was greeted with contempt. At the same time, the policy of making cheap alcohol easily available round the clock – another Labour triumph – was tailor-made to encourage dissolute behaviour.

There is strong evidence that the most effective method of reducing teenage pregnancies is not sex education, but the improvement of general education standards, particularly among the poorest, where the problem is greatest.

Interesting and worth following.

US military's top secret X-37B shuttle 'disappears' for two weeks, changes orbit

  • X-37B Boeing

The X-37B - amateur skywatchers are enjoying the cat-and-mouse game with the US military's "space weapon" / AP Source: AP

  • Secret shuttle launched in April
  • Skywatchers lose it for two weeks
  • Orbit change shows stealth ability

AMATEUR astronomers are enjoying a cat-and-mouse game with the US military in keeping track of its secret space plane, the X-37B.

The X-37B was launched in April amid much publicity, but scant detail about its true use.

Built by Boeing's Phantom Works division, the X-37B program was originally headed by NASA.

It was later turned over to the Pentagon's research and development arm and then to a secretive Air Force unit.

Read more:

O Care

Sen. Baucus [author of Obamacare] admits to not reading bill!
'We hire experts'...
FLASHBACK: Will Congress read bills before voting?
More than 3M seniors may have to switch drug plans...

Political Cartoon by Michael Ramirez

Happy 80

Sean Connery as a child in 1932 with his mother Effie

Sir Thomas Sean Connery was born 80 years ago on 25 August 1930

Daniela Bianchi starred with Connery in the 1963 James Bond film From Russia With Love

Daniela Bianchi starred with Connery in the 1963 James Bond film From Russia With Love

Sir Sean Connery wearing full Highland dress and wearing his medal after he was formally knighted by the Queen during a investiture ceremony, at the Holyrood House in Edinburgh

Sir Sean Connery wore full Highland dress for the investiture ceremony

The story behind the Mexican kidnapping of an American Girl. You will not see this on MSM.

Rampant violence plagues Mexico and on occasion spills over the border. Mexico has had, for some time, a higher murder rate than Iraq, if nowhere near as high as Venezuela. In that context, this story has a happy ending: an 18 year old girl was kidnapped in the U.S., taken across the border into Mexico and held for ransom. When it turned out that her family couldn't pay, the criminals dumped her in a Mexican field. Eventually she was rescued and returned, alive, to her parents.

It is the details of the story that are revealing. Policemen in her own town were able to talk with the girl on her cell phone, but they couldn't cross the border to help her:

U.S. authorities did not contact their Mexican counterparts because they did not know whether they were corrupted or connected to the girl's captors, [San Juan Police Chief Juan] Gonzalez said.

So corruption in Mexican police forces is so common that American authorities don't dare tell Mexican policemen the whereabouts of a kidnap victim.

Random people the girl encountered would not help, either.

"People that she came across didn't want to help," the chief said. "People are living in fear in Mexico."

Gonzalez would not specify exactly who went to pick up the girl -- only that a "courageous person" crossed and found her covered in dirt, but unharmed.

So the authorities apparently carried out an "unofficial" rescue. I'm not surprised that people are living in fear in Mexico, given the level of violence there. But this kind of incident suggests a breakdown in the social order that may not be sustainable for much longer.

Recap on yesterday’s primaries

Perhaps the most surprising result is the closeness of the result in the Alaska Republican Senate primary. Joe Miller holds a 3,000 vote lead over incumbent Lisa Murkowski. According to Politico, 16,000 absentee ballots have yet to be counted. Miller was substantially outspent by Murkowski; he had the endorsement of Sarah Palin and the support of Alaska tea party activists going for him. Exit questions on this race: Who is the Democratic senatorial nominee? Does it matter? Let's hope not.

Republicans nominated Rick Scott over Bill McCollum as their gubernatorial candidate in Florida. Scott is a problematic candidate whose bottomless personal resources ultimately carried the day in the primary. The Miami Herald credits Scott with pulling off a "one-man political revolution" last night, given the weight of the forces of the Republican establishment that he overcame.

Now Scott faces off against Democratic nominee Alex Sink. Republican turnout in Florida dwarfed that on the Democratic side, which featured a competitive senatorial race between Kendrick Meek and billionaire Jeff Greene (won by Meek). The result of the Republican gubernatorial primary keeps hope alive for Florida Democrats. NRO's Battle '10 and Jim Geraghty have more.

In Florida's Eighth Congressional District, Daniel Webster emerged the winner of the Republican primary for the right to challenge Democratic incumbent and all-around madman Alan Grayson. Webster was supported by Jeb Bush and Mike Huckabee. Jim Geraghty, I think (I can't find the link now) characterizes the general election contest as one between the devil and Daniel Webster. Support Webster here.

John McCain whipped J.D. Hayworth in the Arizona Republican primary. Who is McCain's Democratic opponent in the general election? The Democratic primary featured a competitive four-way race, but let's face it. It doesn't matter who won. Come November Senator McCain will hold the seat and breathe a sigh of relief.

In Arizona's Third Congressional District, Ben Quayle emerged victorious. With any luck, liberals will have this member of the younger Quayle generation to kick around for a good long time to come.

Eat Pray Love

Yes, it is a chick flick.  But it is a good one.  Men take your woman. You will learn.  Richard Jenkins

should get a best supporting actor nomination.

Something every High Schooler knows

New Evidence on How Cranberry Juice Fights Bacteria That Cause Urinary Tract Infections

ScienceDaily (Aug. 23, 2010) — Researchers report new scientific evidence on the effectiveness of that old folk remedy -- cranberry juice -- for urinary tract infections, at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS), being held in Boston.

O’s Iman in Middle East

Imam: U.S. Has Muslim Blood on Its Hands

Controversial imam at the center of ground zero mosque debate who is currently representing the U.S. in the Mideast once said America had killed more innocents than Al Qaeda

"We tend to forget, in the West, that the United States has more Muslim blood on its hands than Al Qaeda has on its hands of innocent non-Muslims," said Imam Fiesal Abdul Rauf.  "You may remember that the U.S.-led sanctions against Iraq led to the death of over half a million Iraqi children.”

(editor note: his number is total BS and fabricated by Sadam Hussein)

The imam is currently on a taxpayer-funded State Department trip to the Mideast, where he is serving as a representative of the United States.

Didn’t Tom Cruise do a movie on this like 3 years ago?

Pre-Crime Technology To Be Used In Washington...
Software Predicts 'Criminal Behavior'...
Full-Body Scan Deployed In Street-Roving Vans...

Economy – I exited yesterday.

BIDEN: 'We're moving in right direction'...
Worries about recovery deepen...
'Hindenburg Omen' creator exits stock market...
Economy in 'Depression, Not Recession'...
Dow Faces 'Bouncy Ride to 5,000'...
Typical Slow Summer -- or Something Darker?
Drop in Home Sales Renews Pricing Fears...
Investors Scatter to Safety...

The elites do not get it. (However, they do get some funky plastic surgery)

Andrea Mitchell on Mosque: America Need to Be 'More Sensitive to Minority Communities'

Andrea Mitchell on Mosque: America Need to Be 'More Sensitive to Minority Communities'