April 28, 2011

Fight of the Century: Keynes vs. Hayek Round Two

LMFAO - Party Rock Anthem ft. Lauren Bennett, GoonRock


April 25, 2011

Stimulus by Fed Is Disappointing, Economists Say

Wow... Really?  Gosh...

About Jesus, historically.

 There are numerous non-biblical accounts concerning Jesus and we have documents close to the original manuscripts attesting to his life and works, some dating to within the 1st century.

Consider that the earliest manuscripts we have for Homer's Illiad, for example, are 500 years from the original.
Julius Caesar's Gallic Wars, 1,000 years.
Herodotus's History, 1,300 years.
There are only 643 manuscripts of Homer's Illiad available to us; 10 for Gallic Wars; 8 for Herodotus's History.

The manuscripts we have of the Bible's New Testament, including the accounts of Jesus' life, are as close as 25 years to the originals and number over 24,000. As far as ancient documents go, nothing really compares.

There is much less documentation for Alexander the Great. So, it isn't the lack of evidence at issue. It is whether or not one believes the accounts that are written in the ancient documents.

April 18, 2011

GDP question.

So, if you get around $938 billion from the rich, and basically $2,000 billion from everybody else, that gives you $3 trillion (rounded up).

Then you have a budget deficit of one to $1.4 trillion, where is the money coming from?

You couldn't close the deficit if you confiscated everybody's money.

April 17, 2011

UN Scrubs Errant 50 Million Global Warming Refugees Prediction From Website

UN Scrubs Errant 50 Million Global Warming Refugees Prediction From Website

As NewsBusters reported Tuesday, the United Nations in 2005 wrongly predicted there would be 50 million environmental refugees by the end of the previous decade as a result of global warming.

Aaron Worthing noticed Friday that the 'handy map" the U.N. had created to identify places most at risk for such population migrations has been removed:

You might remember the other day I pointed out how the UN predicted 50 million climate refugees by 2010, a prediction that came up laughably short of the mark by only around 50 million. Well, if you go to that post and click on the link to the UN page making that claim… something funny happens. You get this:

Isn't that nice?

Worthing has cached screenshots of that page's content for those interested.

The man that first reported the irony of this U.N. prediction, Asian Correspondent's Gavin Atkins, noted Saturday:

In 2007, UN Under-Secretary General and Head of the UNEP, Aachim Steiner told a conference in Africa:

So I have initiated a number of reforms that will begin in the next few weeks.

Some however have already begun in terms of looking at how we can improve the transparency and accountability of this institution

He also received the Steiger Award for straight-forwardness, honesty, fairness and helpfulness.

Is the deletion of this map without adequate explanation an example of Mr Steiner’s transparency and accountability?


Is this what we can expect from the U.N. in the future - when one of its predictions of doom and gloom don't pan out, the evidence will get scrubbed?

That's quite a level of integrity at the organization largely responsible for all the world's panic over carbon dioxide emissions.

This should make folks even more skeptical of anything coming from this outfit.

April 16, 2011


Some for-profit charter school chains are corrupt, therefore every charter school is bad, and the charter movement must be opposed...


April 15, 2011

So whats wrong with this?

New Federal Tax Code:

After the first 50,000.00 dollars of income (the monetary payment received for goods or services, or from other sources, as rents or investments). Individuals will be taxed 20%.  (20% is a number I pulled out of a hat).

April 13, 2011


Nasty political discourse is something that has always been.  If you look back in some archives you will find it much nastier then it is now.

April 12, 2011


It is very easy to justify the purchase of a bike.

Easier still, when it is used as the primary method of going to and from a paying job.

Even more so, when gas prices move upward at a wallet gutting pace.

Learning to ask the right questions.

Sales is an interesting occupation.  At Costco our members (customers), see us in our red vests and ask the location of various things.  Or they have particular questions about computers or televisions. Sometimes they just need someone to load a safe onto a cart.

We emphasize customer service, even if there are only a few of us on the floor.

So when a members starts a conversation with: "A while ago you had a..."  I have a sense of dread.  Usually this item is something we do not have and may, or may not have in the future.  I can check the item and see if there are any in stock, at the warehouse etc. This only provides me a two week window on any given item. If you see something at Costco and you want it... buy it.  Because, it may not be there the next visit.

Answering the "why do you not have something" is a slippery slope.  Luckily, we have many long time Costco employees who have honed a response with experience. So I listen dutifully when one of these explanations, are spoken from a knowledgeable one. The corporate philosophy is to be honest and forthright.  Which works well for me.  I have never had management tell me not to tell a member something honest.  However, presentation in these situations is key.

April 07, 2011

Work Friends

Tina pointed out how anti-social I am.

A group of people from my work head out to a local bar on to sing Karaoke. I got a hankering to go and after a couple of false starts we were able to attend. It was fun enough that we were able to go a second time and even stay much longer. (even though Tina has early work the next day.)

Tina commented on how this was the first time, since we moved up here, that I showed an interest in going out with people from work. I was pretty sure this was not true, in retrospect she is right.

I have to go back to Planet Photon (a place I worked) before I can find myself working with work people I liked hanging out with. Well, there are my skate guard jobs. However, I skated there socially prior to working.

So what is so non-compelling about my previous "work friends?" How has this changed?

I have a great group of friends that I have been in contact with, the social network of Facebook has given me the opportunity to re-connect with many others. Moving up to Oregon, did pluck me from my social circle, and I have never felt much of a need to re-establish one.

April 06, 2011

TV contrast ratio

TV contrast ratio is one of the most controversial specifications when comparing televisions from manufacturer to manufacturer because the industry doesn't have an agreed upon standard of measurement.

Without a standard, we don't know exactly how each manufacturer tests their displays and how their process differs from other manufacturers. As a result, industry experts recommend using contrast ratio only when comparing HDTVs made by the same manufacturer.

The general thought among industry experts is that static contrast ratio is a more reliable measurement because it is more consistent with how the viewing display will show content rather than a "what if" scenario that dynamic contrast ratio employs.


I had a dream vivid enough that I remember having a dream. There has been quite a long time since that happened.

I remember it being very detailed. Now I can only recall bits and pieces.

Being on a hillside, wearing something like my dead cowboy staple costume that limits my peripheral vision. Possibly sans eyeglasses. Seeing a car pull-up. It is supposed to be dark, but it is more of that 70's television dark with sharp shadows.

I was looking around quickly as if anticipating something, when I notice a looming shadow, meaning something large and probably menacing is behind me, further up the hill.

I think I was supposed to be scared but I recall being annoyed and thinking: "Great, now I have to fight this, whatever it is..."

Dreams sure are weird.

April 05, 2011


In talking with a fundamentalist about creation and the fall, he was surprised that Catholics did not share views.

Later I decided to look it up in the Catechism:

390 The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event, a deed that took place at the beginning of the history of man. Revelation gives us the certainty of faith that the whole of human history is marked by the original fault freely committed by our first parents.

396 God created man in his image and established him in his friendship. A spiritual creature, man can live this friendship only in free submission to God. the prohibition against eating "of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil" spells this out: "for in the day that you eat of it, you shall die." The "tree of the knowledge of good and evil" symbolically evokes the insurmountable limits that man, being a creature, must freely recognize and respect with trust. Man is dependent on his Creator, and subject to the laws of creation and to the moral norms that govern the use of freedom.

So you could interpret the two trees literally. The Catechism (the common teaching of the Church) seems to take them symbolically, one representing the opportunity for immortality in union with God and the other representing the moral limits that man must respect or fall out of harmony with God.


310 But why did God not create a world so perfect that no evil could exist in it? With infinite power God could always create something better. But with infinite wisdom and goodness God freely willed to create a world "in a state of journeying" towards its ultimate perfection. In God's plan this process of becoming involves the appearance of certain beings and the disappearance of others, the existence of the more perfect alongside the less perfect, both constructive and destructive forces of nature. With physical good there exists also physical evil as long as creation has not reached perfection.

April 03, 2011

Fast food = Bad food?

A recent facebook wall conversation linked homeless obesity with fast food.

That started me thinking about Taco Bell. Way back when, they had large pressure cookers and a deli style slicer. The ingredients that came in consisted of dry Pintos, heads of iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, onions etc. They did not open until 11:00, giving the morning crew a chance to prep for lunch. They would cook the meat, pressure cook the beans, slice the veggies and grate the cheese.

This is a far cry from the current fare. So what is the difference?

Fast food is a volume business. With minimum wage laws they need to up efficiency in order to stay viable. They are in a fight for every consumer. With a business model like this they have guys in cubicles crunching numbers and coming up with charts, graphs and figures to lower the cost of business. At the same time you have to maintain a uniformity and quality that makes people desire the product.

A factory that makes the items and a distribution system must make fiscal sense. Which makes fresh food a thing of the past. So more stuff to enhance the taste and degrade the waste.

Some places have bucked the trend; Subway, for instance. I wonder what the profit on a five dollar foot long is really?