January 30, 2010

And so Obama admits his Health Care opponents are correct.

Link with Video

I recall the Republicans being called "The party of NO!", called obstructionists, and survive countless attempts to be marginalized, in the Obamacare debate as they point out this is not a patient-driven, market-oriented approach to curb rising health care costs.

This is government takeover of our personal choices of insurers and doctors. Say that and be ready to be called a liar, to be told there is no government mandate and control of up to a sixth of our economy.

Then riddle me this, why did Obama admit as much?

The last thing I will say, though -- let me say this about health care and the health care debate, because I think it also bears on a whole lot of other issues. If you look at the package that we’ve presented -- and there’s some stray cats and dogs that got in there that we were eliminating, we were in the process of eliminating. For example, we said from the start that it was going to be important for us to be consistent in saying to people if you can have your -- if you want to keep the health insurance you got, you can keep it, that you’re not going to have anybody getting in between you and your doctor in your decision making. And I think that some of the provisions that got snuck in might have violated that pledge.

Let us hope that the recent desperation the Democrats and Obama administration have been showing will lead to something that will HELP the people!

January 29, 2010

Oregon budget gap

Oregon voted it okay to raise taxes. It was sold as only the rich will loose and our schools will win.

Which, is of course, politics per usual.

There is a guy who started up a business in a nearby town. He has been building slowly over the last couple of years and has been able to hire five employee's. Doing so he had a $5000.00 loss for 2009, he does not mind paying $150.00 for the new minimum tax, he thinks $100.00 min would have been enough (It used to be $10.00). However, now he will have to pay taxes on receivables (isn't that a sales tax?) around $2000.00 that he just does not have, so one of the workers is now laid off (flush that training if they find another job) and his losses for 2009 is now $7000.00.

He just raised his prices by 1.5% in an attempt to generate income to call back he employee..

January 28, 2010

The Credibility Gap - By S. Palin

Original posting here.

While I don’t wish to speak too harshly about President Obama’s state of the union address, we live in challenging times that call for candor. I call them as I see them, and I hope my frank assessment will be taken as an honest effort to move this conversation forward.

Last night, the president spoke of the “credibility gap” between the public’s expectations of their leaders and what those leaders actually deliver. “Credibility gap” is a good way to describe the chasm between rhetoric and reality in the president’s address. The contradictions seemed endless.

He called for Democrats and Republicans to “work through our differences,” but last year he dismissed any notion of bipartisanship when he smugly told Republicans, “I won.”

He talked like a Washington “outsider,” but he runs Washington! He’s had everything any president could ask for – an overwhelming majority in Congress and a fawning press corps that feels tingles every time he speaks. There was nothing preventing him from pursuing “common sense” solutions all along. He didn’t pursue them because they weren’t his priorities, and he spent his speech blaming Republicans for the problems caused by his own policies.

He dared us to “let him know” if we have a better health care plan, but he refused to allow Republicans in on the negotiations or consider any ideas for real free market and patient-centered reforms. We’ve been “letting him know” our ideas for months from the town halls to the tea parties, but he isn’t interested in listening. Instead he keeps making the nonsensical claim that his massive trillion-dollar health care bill won’t increase the deficit.

Americans are suffering from job losses and lower wages, yet the president practically demanded applause when he mentioned tax cuts, as if allowing people to keep more of their own hard-earned money is an act of noblesse oblige. He claims that he cut taxes, but I must have missed that. I see his policies as paving the way for massive tax increases and inflation, which is the “hidden tax” that most hurts the poor and the elderly living on fixed incomes.

He condemned lobbyists, but his White House is filled with former lobbyists, and this has been a banner year for K Street with his stimulus bill, aka the Lobbyist’s Full Employment Act. He talked about a “deficit of trust” and the need to “do our work in the open,” but he chased away the C-SPAN cameras and cut deals with insurance industry lobbyists behind closed doors.

He spoke of doing what’s best for the next generation and not leaving our children with a “mountain of debt,” but under his watch this year, government spending is up by 22%, and his budget will triple our national debt.

He spoke of a spending freeze, but doesn’t he realize that each new program he’s proposing comes with a new price tag? A spending freeze is a nice idea, but it doesn’t address the root cause of the problem. We need a comprehensive examination of the role of government spending. The president’s deficit commission is little more than a bipartisan tax hike committee, lending political cover to raise taxes without seriously addressing the problem of spending.

He condemned bailouts, but he voted for them and then expanded and extended them. He praised the House’s financial reform bill, but where was Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae in that bill? He still hasn’t told us when we’ll be getting out of the auto and the mortgage industries. He praised small businesses, but he’s spent the past year as a friend to big corporations and their lobbyists, who always find a way to make government regulations work in their favor at the expense of their mom & pop competitors.

He praised the effectiveness of his stimulus bill, but then he called for another one – this time cleverly renamed a “jobs bill.” The first stimulus was sold to us as a jobs bill that would keep unemployment under 8%. We now have double digit unemployment with no end in sight. Why should we trust this new “jobs bill”?

He talked about “making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development,” but apparently it’s still too tough for his Interior Secretary to move ahead with Virginia’s offshore oil and gas leases. If they’re dragging their feet on leases, how long will it take them to build “safe, clean nuclear power plants”? Meanwhile, he continued to emphasize “green jobs,” which require massive government subsidies for inefficient technologies that can’t survive on their own in the real world of the free market.

He spoke of supporting young girls in Afghanistan who want to go to school and young women in Iran who courageously protest in the streets, but where were his words of encouragement to the young girls of Afghanistan in his West Point speech? And where was his support for the young women of Iran when they were being gunned down in the streets of Tehran?

Despite speaking for over an hour, the president only spent 10% of his speech on foreign policy, and he left us with many unanswered questions. Does he still think trying the 9/11 terrorists in New York is a good idea? Does he still think closing Gitmo is a good idea? Does he still believe in Mirandizing terrorists after the Christmas bomber fiasco? Does he believe we’re in a war against terrorists, or does he think this is just a global crime spree? Does he understand that the first priority of our government is to keep our country safe?

In his address last night, the president once again revealed that there’s a fundamental disconnect between what the American people expect from their government, and what he wants to deliver. He’s still proposing failed top-down big government solutions to our problems. Instead of smaller, smarter government, he’s taken a government that was already too big and supersized it.

Real private sector jobs are created when taxes are low, investment is high, and people are free to go about their business without the heavy hand of government. The president thinks innovation comes from government subsidies. Common sense conservatives know innovation comes from unleashing the creative energy of American entrepreneurs.

Everything seems to be “unexpected” to this administration: unexpected job losses; unexpected housing numbers; unexpected political losses in Massachusetts, Virginia, and New Jersey. True leaders lead best when confronted with the unexpected. But instead of leading us, the president lectured us. He lectured Wall Street; he lectured Main Street; he lectured Congress; he even lectured our Supreme Court Justices.

He criticized politicians who “wage a perpetual campaign,” but he gave a campaign speech instead of a state of the union address. The campaign is over, and President Obama now has something that candidate Obama never had: an actual track record in office. We now can see the failed policies behind the flowery words. If Americans feel as cynical as the president suggests, perhaps it’s because the audacity of his recycled rhetoric no longer inspires hope.

Real leadership requires results. Real hope lies in the ingenuity, generosity, and boundless courage of the American people whose voices are still not being heard in Washington.

- Sarah Palin

Politcial Blogging.

Blogs are a never ending mosaic of thought, feeling and expression. The political blogging has certain defined (by moi) forms

The Rant blog. Passionate, mostly rhetorical and cathartic in nature.

The Attack blog: Highly biased, intolerant, rhetoric filled, ad hominem, name calling, childish.

The Thoughtful blog: Introspective, conceding points on merit, non-ideological.

What is most disconcerting thing about the attack blog is the mob mentality that is generated. So they self generate a desire to repress. Some of the comments become rabid with zero tolerance to ideas outside of the group. To read them can evoke such a strong emotion that can override the understanding that nothing is to be gained by jumping into the fray.

He who knows when he can fight and when he can not will be victorious. ~~Sun Tzu

My friend Shoo is very adept at divorcing emotion from discussion, it is a trait I really admire. I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve when it comes to such things. The Wizard does as well, usually making me re-consider a position. Both I consider thoughtful blogs. (my own is a rant)

While I enjoy a good rant, I prefer to read the thoughtful.

January 27, 2010

Virus on my sons PC

There is an ongoing trend of pop-up webpages that attempt to simulate anti-virus programs. The nasty thing about these is what they do to a system.

If you click anyplace on the screen you have the potential of installing software. If you have Vista or Windows 7 you will get a window asking if you really want to install. Windows XP, it just does it, unless your system has anti-malware that is up to snuff.

Best way to get out of this if you don't? Bring up the task manager, and stop the process. In some cases you have to stop the Explorer.exe process itself! I am fairly hands off PC guy at home. I will give instruction but I am loathe to have my kids rely on anyone directly intervening.

When my kids wanted a CD burner, I pointed them were they could find pricing and features. After one was purchased I left it up to them to install. My daughter built her first PC from parts I had secured, I did have to step in on some of the more perplexing bits. All in all it has been a pretty good policy. I have been big on having backups on flash drives and saving big documents often.

So last night my son described what could only be a Trojan style virus as pictured above. A quick visual and assurance that he had not clicked anyplace on the window, had me issue instructions.

Reboot your computer into safe mode. You do this by spamming the F8 key.
Run a virus scan while in safe mode. Fix\Repair\Delete the bad mojo.
Run the cleaner software after that.
Reboot and see the results in Regular mode.

He did (there was some questioning around the F8 key working as it should). Upon Reboot the malware re-asserted its alpha dog status. It quickly became apparent that it wanted to take me on. To which I say "BRING IT!"

Hard shut down (holding the power button for around 10 seconds).
Reboot and spam the F8 key (hitting it over and over until the DOS text looking screen comes up)
Boot into safe mode. Pull up the Registry and start looking for the installation tracks.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\Desktop Security 2010
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon “Shell” = “C:\Program Files\Desktop Security 2010\Desktop Security 2010.exe”
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\User Agent\Post Platform “Desktop Security 2010″
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run “”
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run “Desktop Security 2010″
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run “SecurityCenter”

Google the offending item and see that it is a nasty one. Further it looks like it installed a bunch of other random crap as well as infected the System Restore file. Ugh...

Pull out the batman utility belt (my flashdrive). Webroot spysweeper, CCleaner, Revo Uninstaller. Then some followup dective work shows me that AVG and Defender are compromised. Further they have not been updated in quite some time.

Which means a Dad lecture about safe computing to follow...

Uninstall the offending programs, reboot to safe mode + networking and install the latest version, update and scan. Suprise it actually finds some hidden nasties as well.

Windows update and grab the security updates and one final scan. "This house is clean"

A reboot and nary a sign of the nasty. I re-started system restore and started gathering my copious piles of notes, graphs and charts for the lecture...

January 26, 2010

mo' monie

We are showing a 24% unemployment here in Douglas County. The highest ever.

The official count is 17% with the balance being those no longer looking or have exhausted their unemployment. It is really tough out there. We are doing okay, but Tina is in a frustrating job and mine keeps bleeding hours away (we are looking at another cut next year).

So I am scouring the few want ads and job sites for anything. I have applied to a few positions here and there. Mostly to get a "I'm sorry but..." e-mail back. The companies that do put something out is inundated with applications. Recently a fast food chain locally got 600+ applications for a position.

Figuring out some business that would take off and make a seizable income would be a pretty awesome choice.

January 25, 2010


Aged Man cometh. on skates, no less.

I had so much fun roller skating with Connor, I decided to go back last on my own. And thus injured my Extensor Digitorum Longus (pictured to the left). It was during a transition from forward to backward skating and I landed wrong. As far as crashes go it was a light fall, I felt a pull but then it subsided. So, of course, I ignored it and continued skating (Not quite sure why I have such denial about stuff like this).

I did get some anti-inflammatory and iced the area when I got home. The next morning PAIN when I stepped wrong. I stepped down carrying something and was forced to verbalize. Usually I can be quite stoic. The sudden jolt was more then I could subdue.

So another round of cold 15-min, hot 15-min, cold 15-min, hot 15-min, with more Anti-inflam. Today it feels much better. I can still step wrong, but I have a greater range of no-pain (if that makes sense).

I was feeling like maybe I should "walk-it-off" and do my normal work perambulation. Then my common sense finally kicked in and I am "taking-time-to-recover" instead.

Aside from that, it was quite a lot of fun and rather interesting from a observational perspective. If you have not been skating in years, I suggest you give it a go. Just start out much slower then you want to, or think you can.

January 22, 2010

First Amendment Upheld!

The Washington Post has the story. It all started with David Bossie, "a veteran Republican campaign operative who was investigating the Clintons, as a conservative answer to Michael Moore’s. His Group 'Citizens United' released 'Celsius 41.11'

When Hillary Rodham Clinton ran for president, Citizens United released another flick: 'Hillary: The Movie.' Featuring a who’s-who cast of right-wing commentators. It takes viewers on a savaging journey through Clinton’s scandals.

The Federal Election Commission restricted Citizens United’s ability to advertise the film during the 2008 primary season, a decision that conservative activists saw as a threat to freedom of speech. So Bossie sued -- Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.

The Citizens united Lawer transformed the case from a narrow one about McCain-Feingold to an assault on the law's constitutionality.

When the Supreme Court first heard the case in March, Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm L. Stewart, representing the FEC was pulled into a discussion of an issue that took him down a slippery slope: If the movie were a book, would the government ban publishing the book if it mentioned a candidate for office within the election time frame?" The FEC said yes, the government would ban the book, and the justices jumped to clairfy 'It's a 500-page book, and at the end it says, 'And so vote for X,' the government could ban that?' Justices asked. "The government lawyer said yes. If they are going to ban a movie, they have to be consistant.

So this is a victory for the constitution and free speech. The decrying of this by those on the left speaks to me quite loudly...

January 21, 2010

Just wow, did someone push the Democrat self destruct?

One Election, one more vote in the Senate for the minority. I was expecting some hand wringing and oddball spin, I was not disappointed. Today it got downright nasty, and I do not mean Right wing Gloat. Because, those on the right have NOTHING to gloat about.

Still look at the left thrashing of the left:
Paul Krugman The Politico looking at Krugman.

The Daily Beast (progressive blog)

Politico tells us what went wrong!

Pelosi and the Dems are disliking the landmark Obama care?

Harry Reid is cordial to Brown (Remember Burris?)

Der Spiegal (Germany News) The World bids Farewell to Obama...


Obama's first year (in a sentence)

"It's hard to believe President Obama has now been in office for a year. ... And you know, it's incredible. He took something that was in terrible, terrible shape, and he brought it back from the brink of disaster....The Republican Party."

~~Jay Leno

How Taxing works

Why is it that anytime there is the suggestion of lower taxes it is viewed as “Helping the rich”?

Suppose that every day, ten men go to the bar, and drank exactly $100 worth of beer among them. If they paid their bill similar to how you pay taxes, the breakdown would be roughly as follows:
The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that’s what they decided to do.

The ten men drank contentedly together in the saloon bar until the barkeep, meaning to be helpful, presented them with a dilemma.

“Gentlemen,” he said, “you’re my best customers. To show you how much I appreciate your patronage, I’d like to give you a discount. From now on, I’ll knock $20 of the total bill for your drinks”.

Drinks for the ten men would now cost just $80.

The group wanted to carry on splitting their bill in the same way. So, the first four men, those least well off, would continue to enjoy free beer. What of the other six? How could they divide the $20 discount in such a way that everyone got his fair share of the windfall?

They realised that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody’s share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink.

So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man’s bill by a higher percentage the poorer he was. This is how the bill now looked.

The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100 per cent saving).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33 per cent saving).
The seventh now paid $5 instead of $7 (28 per cent saving).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25 per cent saving).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22 per cent saving).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16 per cent saving).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to enjoy free booze. But, as they left the pub, the men began to compare their savings.

“I only got a buck out of the $20 saving,” declared the sixth man. ”Why should he get $10?” - Referring to the tenth.

“Your right,” exclaimed the fifth man. “I only saved a buck as well. It’s unfair that he got ten times more benefit than me!”

“That’s true!” shouted the seventh man. “Why should he get $10 back, when I got two measly dollars? The system is rigged in favour of the Rich!”

“Wait a minute,” yelled the first four men in unison, “we didn’t get anything at all. It’s always the worst off who get neglected!”

The nine men dragged the tenth into the carpark and gave beat the crap out of him.

The next night the tenth man didn’t show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had their beer without him. But when the bill came, they found that their money didn’t even cover half of it.

The point is that any general tax cut is bound to favor the people paying the most already.

Of course, if your objective is equality rather than prosperity, you can design a fiscal system around the expropriation of the tenth man. But, he is unlikely to hang around waiting for you to apply it.

January 20, 2010

Oregon Land of the Unemployed and overtaxed!

I started ThinkOregon to shed light on the economic pain that hard-working Oregonians are dealing with each day. My daytime job provides a unique perspective on a fairly broad cross-section of the state's economy, and how hard the recession has hit Oregonians.

Writing in this journal has also broaden my perspective: I now have a deeper appreciation for how economically interconnected we all are. There is truth in "what happens to one of us, happens to all of us."

I received an email from a reader last night that was very much like all the others. I've sanitized the identity of the author and included the bulk of it below. The theme is all too familiar: a dramatic reductions in revenues, layoffs and an underlying despair that, for some reason, this time, just penetrated me to the core.

Most "Vote Yes" supporters will read the email and immediately take out their calculators to figure out how much, if any, this ThinkOregon reader will have to pay if Measures 66 and 67 pass. They'll proclaim with great joy "see he only has to pay $XXX.XX ... isn't that a small price to pay for schools and social services?"

This myopia seems especially grievous to me. It's a gut wrenching exercise in futility to constantly have to point out the blinding glimpse of the obvious: opposition to Measures 66 and 67 have never been about any one tax bill, but rather the overall negative impact on Oregon's fragile economy.

I've never been concerned about the direct costs of Measures 66 and 67 on my own pocketbook. I am, however, deathly afraid of how it will change the spending habits of my customers... and the customers of other small business owners around the state.

The recession took trillions of dollars of spending power out of the economy and now hundreds of thousands of Oregonians on unemployment and food stamps live that reality each and every day.

Why is it so difficult for the "Vote Yes" campaign to see how Oregon businesses are dependent on the patronage of others? The details in the email below aren't nearly as important as the lesson of how we are so utterly dependent upon the spending habits of others.

The "Vote Yes" campaign's mantra of "it's only $150" is utterly misleading as it takes the focus off the economic disaster that will be caused by $733,000,000 in new, permanent and retroactive taxes. More spending power that will be drained from the customers of Oregon small businesses. More customers of Oregon businesses will change their spending patterns. And ultimately, more Oregon small businesses and their employees will suffer.

Yet the "Vote Yes" campaign seems content to push their way to head of the line -- past the jobless, past those hanging on by a thread -- to demand even more.

As we approach the end of this election, Oregonians don't need a calculator or an advanced degree in economics to decide how to vote... we simply need to see the forest for the trees.

Copy pasted from Here.


To quote Jimmy Fallon: I read that a year into Obama's first term in office unemployment is higher, the national debt is higher, and there are more soldiers serving in Afghanistan. When asked about it, Obama was like, 'Yeah, technically that is change.'

And now for the hand wringing and the declarations and the divinations of what this means.

Simply put, it means the people of Massachusetts elected a Republican senator. A man who ran against the takeover of healthcare and is for needed health care reform. Who ran as pro-Free Market. Who ran as pro-Charter Schools and school accountability.

This also makes use of the Senate filibuster viable. Which, I hope, will allow for some bi-partisan approaches.

If you read anything more into it then that, its your prerogative. Just do not be sold a bill of goods. November 2010 is still a long ways away.

January 19, 2010

Mass. Curiosity

Eight hours prior to the polls closing The boston Globe website posted the following:

Carly Carioli writes:

Boston.com briefly put up this map of the final results of today's election -- some 8 hours before polls closed!

As you can see, over 2 million people voted, with Coakley eking out a 50-49 victory.

The map was fully interactive, so you could roll over and get town-by-town results -- above we show Coakley taking Cohasset 56-43.

They took the map down shortly after I pointed it out on Twitter. But not before we Phoenix troublemakers got the screen shots!

Now, if the final numbers end up matching these, the Republicans may really have reason to question the integrity of the process...


My daughter wanted to see Avatar. So Monday we caught the early show here in the 'Burg. Because it is in 3D we had to shell out $8.00 a ticket! They noted an additional $2.50 per ticket fee to cover that third dimension. Okay, so be it. Gah!

The glasses were pretty nice. Actual glass set in plastic framework. The real issue was the overhead lights that never quite go out. They reflect in the curve and are an annoying distraction. I highly recommend some kind of hat or hoodie to eliminate that little glare dot factor.

Yes, I had heard about the Business is Bad! mantra that resonates within the film. Soldiers are looking for any excuse to kill things and blow stuff up. Corporations have no ethics other then the bottom line. People are bad sheep for the most part. The Future is a bleak horrid place. Yadda, yadda, yadda. I had also seen this spoiler commentary on the movie by Fr. Barrons which provided a nice perspective I had not heared elsewhere.

So thus armed I decided on letting go for the adventure and put my thoughts into order afterwards. The special effects are great, the storyline is adequate, if not blatantly obvious, to be a safe theme to showcase the FX. They did a good job of making you boo the villain and cheer the hero. It was very nice to see Sigourney Weaver back in Sci-Fi, nostalgic even.

At the end of the film I was reminded of Shoo's comment after we saw Wizards "They made it look like technology is evil." Trevor, my son, bemoaned that they had not found a better less invasive method of ore extraction despite the obvious technological advances.

What sprung into my mind was "Boy did those Atheists really get their collective butts kicked or what?"

January 14, 2010

WoW .vs. Real Life (in wow Memorium)

World of Warcraft is an online game that is great fun (I can send you a free week if you want). It is made by a company called Blizzard which is based in Irvine California. They have far and away the most popular massively, multilayer, online game with over 11 million subscribers. The game is littered with references to sci-fi and pop culture. Some blatant some obscure all of which are designed for someone to stumble across like an easter egg hunt.

One of the more touching inclusions are in game memorials of real life folks. For Instance:

Crusader Bridenbrad the Argent Crusader dying of the plague in Icecrown is based off of a real person, Bradford C. Bridenbecker, who died of cancer in 2007. A La Habra City manager who did not let Cancer stop his work for the people of that city. His brother works at Blizzard.

Ahab Wheathoof and his dog Kyle are the creation of Ezra Chatterton, a young player with cancer who got to spend a day at Blizzard headquarters thanks to the Make A Wish Foundation. He got to create these two NPCs, voice Ahab, and create the quest Kyle's Gone Missing! to go with them, among other things. He passed away in October of 2008 when his tumor, which had been in remission, came back.

Caylee Dak and her pet Dusky in Shattrath City was the character of Dak Krause, who passed away from leukemia on August 22, 2007. She ends the quest Alicia's Poem.

In Hillsbrad there is Rousch, the character of Anthony Ray Stark (yes, real name) who passed away in 2005 in a scuba accident. He has no quest, but he stands in front of a grave marker and will /kneel and /salute it from time to time. He is friendly to both factions.

Koiter is a slightly more complicated memorial. While NPC Koiter uses the Spirit Healer model, behind him is a memorial in a small subzone called the Shrine of the Fallen Warrior in the northern Barrens. Atop the structure is an orc that is a copy of Michel Koiter's character from the WoW beta. He died in 2004 of unknown causes.

Captain Armando Ossex is a member of the Stormpike Guard in Alterac Mountains. He is a memorial to a deceased player who loved playing Alterac Valley.

Again in Hillsbrad is a Decorated Headstone dedicated to Jesse Morales, a Blizzard employee who passed away while WoW was still under development. There was no other information.


Once upon a time I chose to become vegetarian. There are a plethora of reasons for this choice, some reasons better the others. That being said it was a personal choice and while I have little issue with advocating I do not proselytize.

Food choices become draconian with the understanding of awareness. Knowing something is bad is not the same as choosing something different. There is something in human nature that desired forbidding fruit. The concept that some kind of food is bad seems rather simplistic.

Is milk good food or bad food? If you Google this topic you will find lots of different viewpoints, some backed by studies. My daughter, for example, has an intolerance to the sugars found in milk. They cause discomfort to the point that she avoids Dairy products. In other words, she acts on her awareness.

There are interesting reactions to a dietary lifestyle, all the more so from the level of information this is based upon:
  • Direct observation of a small sample: "I have a friend who is vegetarian she looks sickly and frail"
  • Confusion of nutritional sourcing: "Where do you get protein?"
  • Misunderstanding of the concept: "I'm vegetarian too, but I eat fish, chicken and lamb"
  • Defensive acceptance: "I don't eat much meat"
  • The fallen: "I used to be Vegetarian"
Of course these are conversational in nature designed to show interest in the topic or person. The repetition over time from vastly different individuals is where my curiosity lies.

January 13, 2010

Healthcare Debate

When Actor and Liberal Alec Baldwin comes down against the Health Care bill, saying the administration should focus on other policies instead, you know it is in trouble and that is a good thing.

The interesting thing is the reasoning. Union workers are not willing to pay a share of the burden of this health care. Hollywood the Teamsters and AFL-CIO seem to not feel it is right. I guess they did not realize the definition of rich includes compensation for work done.

January 12, 2010

The bounce

As common sense would tell you, the holiday celebrations can make you gain weight. In my case there was not so much gain as stagnation. I have a few weight loss goals. My first goal is 193 pounds which I am very close too meeting. Using a formula by Dr. GJ Hamwi For men: 106 lb for the first 5 ft; 6 lb for each inch over 5 ft For women: 100 lb for the first 5 ft; 5 lb for each inch over 5 ft . These formulas are designed for a person with a medium size frame. Dr. Hamwi suggests that the results may be reduced by 10% for a person with an obviously light frame, and increased by 10% for a person with a heavy frame.

So for my height Light Frame: 158 lb. Heavy Frame: 193 lb.

To figure your Frame size they like the wrist measurement.
(for men)
large: wrist size over 7.5"
medium: wrist size 6.5" to 7.5"
small: wrist size 5.5" to 6.5"

In my mind I feel 185 is my ideal weight. While it is a goal, I am more interested in finding out my body composition (percentage of body fat). The problem there is locating a local way to measure that via submersion (considered highly accurate).

Over the last few weeks I have been bounding and rebounding between 197 and 207. Mostly by my own indulgence, well... I guess ALL by my own indulgence.

So this week I hardened my resolve and started being systematic in my calorie counting.

January 11, 2010

Oh for the ability to talk this clearly.

Why is Jesus Christ taboo in polite conversation or in the world of politics and media?

Brit Hume suggested Tiger Woods turn to Christianity. It was in regards to his character over the scandals.

Mr. Hume spoke his faith and I give him a lot of credit for doing it. I also think it was the appropriate place. The show is a political commentary show not breaking news. If he was an anchor of the morning news then it would be appropriate for him to comment on the story as he did, but he was asked for his opinion.

The backlash has prompted even more rhetoric along the same old "what if" lines that attepmt to prove how divisive things are. Here in the Burg people are confused as to why this opinion would would get such scrutiny and it seems to confirm that the MSM has no clue about the real world out there.

January 09, 2010

Catholic Blog offers a wonderful read!


The Seven Basic Elements of the Modern Scientific Universe are...

1. Time
2. Space
3. Matter
4. Energy
5. Power
6. Prestige
7. Funding

And the greatest of these is funding.

Because of this, scientists don't always let things like "the data" get in the way of "the conclusion". Case in point, the link between abortion and breast cancer.

More proof??!! of Global Warming!

There have been 1,246 United States winter weather record events since December 1st till now. Snowfall: 454 records. Low temperatures: 233. Lowest maximum temperature: 559.

Florida's big chill: Manatees huddle, turtles stunned! This Global Warming is freezing the Manatees in record numbers!

I know it can be frightening and we are all looking for answers, and now this Terrorist... er, sorry I mean... Criminal trying to blow up a plane has everyone distracted! Not to worry the CIA is working on the Climate!

January 07, 2010

CSPAN needs to show the Health Care debate!

Contact your representative and ask for the Obama promised CSPAN debate. It is the only way for us to stop this.

You start to wonder if giving Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11 and his two henchmen, a show trial with full constitutional rights in New York City, a good idea?

Is giving the underware Christmas Bomber, a non-citizen, full constitutional rights, a good idea?

Multiple unauthorized guests in the White House, is that a good thing?

Fort Hood terror attack, was that an isolated incident?
The administration deciding to be tougher on Israel than Iran, is that a good policy?

Sending 90 terrorists from Guantanamo Bay to Yemen, a compassionate ploy?

Is lifting an executive order giving Interpol immunity from American laws a screw up?

Is reneging on an unprompted, calculated campaign pledge to put Obamacare negotiations on C-SPAN eight different times, is that an oversight?

Is creating two trillion-dollar slush funds while calling them TARP and job stimulus plans, is that good fiscal policy?

Has Obama done anything to reignite the US economy? Ten to 17% unemployment!

Maybe this is all on purpose?

Architects of Ruin, by Peter Schweizer Takes a look back at Saul Alinsky, who argued the middle class would have to be brought around slowly to revolutionary change. And that the best way to do it was to take everything away from them! "Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, nonchallenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and change the future. This acceptance is the reformation essential to any revolution."~S. Alinsky

Progressives feel the USA is in need of radical change, The USA is guilty, it is immoral, it is colonial, it is imperialistic, its military is immoral, we have supported the wrong people, we have plundered the earth, we have stolen all these resources for our own benefit and our own lifestyle. This country is unjust and immoral and Obama is going to make it right. So people have to feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the current system, i.e, capitalism, that they are willing to let go of the past, capitalism, and change the future, socialism.

This is a crisis to be taken advantage of by our President...

or maybe I am just being paranoid...

January 04, 2010


Advertising revenue allows radio and television stations to stay in business. There are quite a few people employed, directly and obliquely because of marketing. There are many different good and bad things associated with the advertising industry.

To my way of thinking advertising is more informational. Hey, this product exists! It may or may not work the way we are showing you. Let the buyer beware. I cannot recall a product I personally purchased as a result of a commercial. Yet, there are quite a few things I have purchased after watching some show on the Food Network. Alton Brown can have that influence.

Connor, being how he is, tends to latch onto products based purely upon the marketing. The products that peek this interest are few and far between. Usually, they are a one shot deal. For the greater part, he just enjoys the humor in the commercials, which lean towards slap stick.

As a consumer savvy society we take a jaundiced view at people who are "selling something." Most of us easily see the fact from fiction.

Enter this commercial

Connor wanted to purchase the above product. Finally it arrived in the stores we frequent. This became rather interesting. There was a concern on his part that his head would blow up. While this was a minor concern, requiring a modicum of re-assurance. I made the tactical error of thinking he was joking and confirmed the possibility. Bad form on my part.

Tina, being the smarter of us two, was able to re-assure. He tried the candy and I am thinking that is pretty much it for the experience. Her careful stating that it was only a commercial was a much more parental approach.

This got me wondering about any outlandish commercials that I believed and sure enough one from my youth was remembered. It had a mom type actress who put some peanuts into a shaker and after a few shakes, it had turned to peanut butter. As we had a shaker and some peanuts around the house, I was promptly disillusioned by conducting the experiment myself.

All in all a parenting 101 lesson for me.