Friday, February 25

short drop and a sudden stop

My main question is why are these pirates being brought back to the US for trial? The cost of housing a prisoner is more than $20,000 per year. 15 prisoners, that makes it $300,000 per year. Presumably they will get life sentences, and they are relatively young, so i'll guess 40 years each, that make it $12,000,000 plus the government will have to pay for their lawyers, for the the judges/lawyers to try them, and all their appeal costs, i don't know how much all that is, but i wouldn't be surprised if the total cost of bringing these guys back to the US is $15,000,000. To what possible ends? Either they die in prison here, or are deported following their prison term? It's just insane. As far as i am concerned pirates don't have any legal rights. Certainly they don't have any rights of US criminals as they are neither US citizens, nor even committing crimes in the US. Should they be granted rights simply because they attacked american citizens, that makes no sense. Nor do they have any of the rights of soldiers/prisoners of war because even under the loosest definition they don't fit. They should simply be left in the ocean to drown. The fact that they are pirates, and killed the the hostages is not even in dispute. They claim they were fired upon, the Navy claims they fired first. Either way they are admittedly guilty of murder and piracy. It seems like nobody remembers the lesson of pirates of the carribean that the only way to deal with pirates is a short drop and a sudden stop. If throwing the pirates overboard seems too personal then upon retrieving the bodies of the hostages, the navy simply should have left the pirates on the ship, and sank it. There is no reason for them to accept the surrender of the pirates, they have no such rights. How much did the pirates want in ransom? I'm sure it was less than 15,000,000, so now the government is going to spend more money imprisoning them, then it would have cost to ransom the hostages. Plus these pirates will probably live better lives, at least in terms of food and shelter, in the US than they would have lived had they not turned to piracy. Essentially to incentivising piracy, if the pirates don't get caught they get rich, and if they do get caught they are still better off than living in there home villages in somalia.

On a side note why are these pirates allowed to continue? With all the technology available we can't locate and sink these pirate ships. These are essentially all somali pirates. If somalia cannot control their piracy then the UN should get to work and ban somalia from having access to ships. From now any ship docked off of somalia will be sunk. Period. No questions asked. I don't know, maybe pirates would just start docking someplace else, but clearly something needs to be done. The murder of these 4 hostages might be enough to finally push the international community into doing something, although i suspect with our current president maybe not.

Sushi? Hey, maybe this is just one of those things you hear on the playground, but isn't that raw fish?,0,6087649.column

Another example of what is wrong with america. This guy goes to an all you can eat sushi place, and refuses to eat the rice because he is diabetic. When the owner says he doesn't allow customers to just pick the fish out of the rice the guy sues. Really? First off, as the article notes, Sushi by definition has rice in it as opposed to Sashami which is without rice. In fact according to wikipedia, Sushi is the rice itself, which may or may not be topped with seafood. So this guy claims that because he's a diabetic he should be given special privileges of be allowed to pick just the meat out of the dish. And instead of just finding another restaurant he's suing for emotional distress. Really? You were emotionally distressed by finding out that sushi has rice in it, and you were too much of an idiot to know that. All you can eat places should be somewhat accommodating for people who take something and don't like it, but they should not accommodate people who want to just throw food away. I see commercials for Cici's pizza buffet, i've never been, but what if someone showed up and insisted on just eat the cheese and toppings off, because they were on a low carb diet, or even worse, just the pepperoni slices off cause that's what they like, and throwing the rest away. Or if someone went to a KFC buffet and just ate the skin off the chicken and threw the rest away. Nobody in their right mind should support that. Not only should this guy's lawsuit be thrown out immediately, he should pay be forced to pay for the restaurant's lawyer, and damages for emotional distress/possible loss of revenue to the restaurant owner because of this incident. Instead he may well win because people feel bad for the guy with diabetes. I mean really. This is just stupid.

Wednesday, February 23

You should see a doctor -- I don't think a healthy man can make that kind of smell.

This is a somewhat interesting article. Basically the point is that men act differently/perceive differently around women who are ovulating. Similarly women act differently when they are ovulating. This isn't really schocking, in fact it would be surprising if it wasn't true. It is pretty normal among other species on the planet to act differently when the female is in heat/ovulating, and as long as you believe in evolution, it would be completely normal for humans to have similar responses. But as far as we know humans don't give off, or receive pheremones that are associated with such behavior. This article doesn't go into how men know whether or not women are ovulating, i would think it would have to be through smell, but i guess there could be some sort of subconscious visual cues. I wonder if people will react poorly to this information because it suggests humans are more similar to animals than we care to admit, or will focus on the differences and highlight those, or not really even take notice of the connection.

You know nothing about genetics, Lis: it goes boy, girl, boy, girl.

You'd be hard pressed to come up with a more ridiculous idea for a law. Legislature in Arizona are trying to make it illegal to have an abortion because of the sex of race of the fetus. This is completely new territory. States have created harsher penalties for people who break the law for various reasons (specifically hate crimes.) Which is already bogus. If you beat the shit out of somebody because they are black/white/gay/straight and you hate whatever it is that they are, then your crime is beating the shit out of somebody, not hating them. Hating somebody is not a crime. By this is even worse. They are now suggestion that they can take an act which is legal (and which the supreme court has upheld as legally required by the constitution) and make it illegal depending why you do it. So thousands of other people could be doing the exact same thing as you, but because you did it for a different reason, now it's a crime. This is so comedic it should be on a sitcom. Oh no wait, it already was. In seinfeld when jerry decides he doesn't like the guy he bought a nice suit jacket from, he wants to return it out of spite. And the store refuses to take it back because spite is not an acceptable reason. He tries to say, well i don't like it, but it was too late, he already said spite. It's just inane. And the reason given for cited as 42% of black babies are aborted. Really? Could anyone really be that stupid. Does the person who is concerned about the abortion of black babies think that a stork comes and puts a random baby in a woman's stomach, and then women find out they are going to have a black baby and abort it? The reason so many black babies are aborted is that so many black mothers have abortions. And here's a news flash, 100% of black women's babies ARE BLACK! So every time a black woman has an abortion, she is aborting a black baby. Does this person really think there is an epidemic of white women trying to hide their secret black love children and so having abortions? What is this, Me, Myself and Irene?

And if we move from the legal question to the moral one, at first glance some people might want to say that even if you couldn't make it illegal it is immoral to have an abortion based on the gender or race of a baby. After all we don't want a society where people are aborting female babies like China, or aborting gay babies (if gay linked genes are found) etc. But if you stop to think about it, that's ridiculous. Either the baby is a fetus that has no right to live and the mother has the choice of whether or not she wants it to live, or the baby is a person who has rights, and as such the mother no longer has the right to choose to terminate it because the babies rights now supersede the mother's. There is no other option. Morally either killing a fetus is wrong, or it is not. The reason you killed it is not relevant. I can go outside and chop down a tree because i want to use it for fire wood, or i can go and chop it down just for fun. The reason doesn't matter, because it's a tree. During hunting season i can kill a deer because i want the meat, or because i want the head for my wall, or because i think it's fun, the reason doesn't matter. Or you could argue that i should kill a deer, but the reason is irrelevant, i can guarantee you, neither the deer nor the fetus cares what reason you fill out for the termination.

Tuesday, February 22

My God! It's like five cigarettes at once!

If People are so anti smoking they should just make it illegal. All this beating up on smokers, and taxing the crap out of them is totally bogus. If cigarrettes are so bad for you that they need to have all these restrictions, then they should just be illegalized. And if not then people should be free to buy and enjoy them just like any other good.

Monday, February 21

Aw, somebody's in love. That means you'll have to be neutered.

This article pretty much speaks for itself. Or at least it will have to because i'm too tired/spent to get into any kind of ranting over it. It should be obvious what i think about it so i'll just leave it to the imagination what the rant might have sounded like had i had the energy to come up with it.

Sunday, February 20

Willie tickles the twine for two

Somehow i doubt any of my readers (if there even are any readers of this blog anymore) will have seen the dunk contest. But that was totally bogus. Griffin was clearly the worst of the 4, he won purely on popularity. Which is fine i guess at the end of the day, nobody cares. But giving the win to somebody based purely on popularity isn't doing anything to raise the standards of the dunk contest in any bodies mind, if anything it is further diminishing it.

It's easy to point out my faults. It's a lot harder to shut up.

Here's synopsis of what is wrong with society. Everyone is a victim. People shouldn't be held responsible for their actions because they are victims of some sort, and victims are blameless. I guess it's good that at least celebrities are smart enough to recognize this fact, so tiger woods can go to sex rehab as his penance, pretend he was the victim of an addiction, and people will forgive him. This is why poeple are playing the victim card everywhere. From celebrities to politicians to the teachers in wisconsin to common criminals. That vast majority of them are not victims at all, are in fact if anything villains, but as long as people keep buying into this and giving them credit for claiming victimhood, i can't blame them for doing it.

There is one flaw in the study which is comparing people to the dalai lama. I don't think people would be hold it against the dalai lama because of the good he's done. They would hold it against him because he stands for a moral code and it would by hypocritical of him to steal. The comparison should really be to a more ordinary but heroic person like a fire fighter who is done on his luck an stole something to get by. The study doesn't specify if that kind of scenario was investigated or not, but regardless. The whole idea that someone is not responsible for their actions because they were a victim is totally bogus.

Saturday, February 19

The teachers will crack any minute purple monkey dishwater.

Could these protests in Wisconsin be more bizarre. Just in case anyone hasn't been keeping up to date, Wisconsin elected a republican governor, and large republican majorities in both houses last November. Naturally those republicans campaigned promising budget cuts. So Now they are trying to deliver by forcing government employees (minus police officers and firefighters) to pay more of their insurance/pension costs. Given that the cops and firefighters aren't getting cut, the big losers are teachers, so they are out protesting against this. Which i can understand. The method of their protests is what is puzzling.

First there are constant references to the governor being a dictator, and undemocratic because of these cuts. Because i guess in the teachers minds it is impossible for a person who believes in democracy to cut spending. So while the elected officials are trying to do the jobs they have been elected to do, what are the democratically elected officials doing? They've run off to Illinois. Because without any of them around the republicans can't hold a vote. So by our new definitions being elected and then holding votes on issues is undemocratic, and dictatorial while fleeing the state to prevent a democratically elected government from function is democracy at it's finest. I can't help but notice that none of the liberals who railed against republican filibusters (which is a historically accepted protocol of the senate) have any problem with these democrats not even staying in their home state (legally they can be compelled to show up, but the cops can't cross state lines to retrieve them.) So now the government is shut down because no legislation can be past until the democrats return, which they say they won't.

Beyond the confusing rewriting of the term democratic these protesters also have sign comparing the governor to Hitler, and pictures of his face with cross hairs over it. I thought we just had a big national dialogue about how violent rhetoric was bad for this country so we should stop doing it. So what does the national media think about these violent images? As far as i can tell, nothing. No mention, i guess it's not relevant because liberals are just joking around when they put cross hairs over a guys face, so that doesn't really count as violent.

Obama has come out in support of the unions, and i think he is tying himself to a sinking ship. The democrats have convinced themselves that all of their policies are popular, despite their huge losses in November. The average compensation for a Milwaukee teacher is over $100,000. only $56,000 of that is in salary, the rest is in other benefits like pensions and health insurance. It's also not clear to me if that's the real cost, or that still leaves the pensions underfunded, as they usually are. I suspected the real cost will end up be higher because whatever they are allocating for pensions won't be enough. That's one problem that most of the teachers don't realize just how much their pension is worth. They look at their salary and think it's not that high, but those pensions are worth just as much. I would be happy to give teachers a raise, as long as they give up pensions and start using 401Ks like everyone in the private sector. So the average teacher makes more than $100,000, and Obama and democrats really think that people are going to side against cutting government workers pay? I guess it's possible, but i thinks it's highly unlikely. Democrats should not try to make an issue out of this, because when average Americans realize just how much money government employees are making, none of them are feel bad for them. As many government employees as there are, there are even more people who are paying those taxes and will not be very upset to see those benefits trimmed.

First rule in government spending: why build one when you can have two at twice the price?

In light of the current controversies about reducing government spending, i think it's important to realize just how big government spending has gotten. The budget last year was 3.5 trillion dollars. Unfortunately that number is so large as to have lost all meaning, so in a small effort to make it slightly more understandable, we'll divide it by the population of the US, 300 million people. And we find that the amount spent per person is more than $11,500. And this is just federal taxes. That doesn't pay for schools, or police officers, or for the most part roads. $11,500 for every man woman and child in the country. If we cut out the retired and children the number would probably roughly double to $25,000 from every working age adult in the country, and once local taxes are added in that amount probably increases to $35,000. And democrats are worried about cutting 100 billion, which would amount to $650 dollars of that 25,000 thousand that it spends per person. They absolutely refuse with claims of the horrible effects of the deep cuts. Now just for fun, take a guess at how much the federal government spent in 1965. We'll set it to inflation adjusted dollars so that you can get a good guess at how much it was, and see how it compares today. So is it about the same, is it less, if so how much less. Ready? Got your guess? It was 822 billion. Less than a quarter of what the government spends now. Now the Health and Human Services department spends over 900 billion a year. More than it took to run the entire government 45 years ago. And yet a cut of 100 billion less than 3% of the budget is being called draconian. 45 years ago the government and society in general was able to function in the middle of the cold war on spending that was less than quarter of what it is now. And yet even a minor cut we are told would cripple the governments ability to serve it's people.

Tuesday, February 15

once a man is in your home anything you do to him is nice and legal

I don't understand how this could possibly exist in a democracy. The theory of a democracy is that majority get to decide on what's right for a society. Does anyone really think that a majority of people got together and decided that victims of crimes should be held responsible for any damage that comes to the perpetrators of crimes. I mean the whole idea is just so i bizarre i can't even imagine in my head where the idea could have come from in the first place. Was some law created that was then twisted around, or did some judge go out of his way to give criminals the right to sue their victims. There's really no thought process i can follow to reconcile how this can exist in a government that is theoretically run by the people for the people. It would not bother me at all if people put booby traps in their house in an attempt to harm an intruder. If you try to burgle/rob someone else you do so at your own risk, but that's not even what they are talking about. Someone puts up completely legitimate anti theft devices, and are told to take them down because a burglar could slip and hurt themselves on it while trying to rob you. Good. That would be a good thing. All of society could rejoice, that before going to prison, the burglar got some comeuppance. Someone who is raped is then required to pay child support for the child? What kind of society is this? These decisions ought to be put to a vote so that people can tell the politicians/judges who have come up with these ideas what society really thinks about them. You would hope that politicians/judges would have enough common sense to know that nobody could have possibly intended for this regardless of how the laws have been twisted, but obviously that hope would be misplaced.

Friday, February 11

You can flash-fry a buffalo in forty seconds. Homer: Forty seconds? But I want it now!

This is an interesting take on making a pizza. I'm not sure if i'll try it cause i'm concerned there is a high chance of burning myself, but it's certainly an interesting idea. Once you heat up the the tomato sauce the only thing that needs to cook is the dough so i guess that works, although i don't know what that means for toppings. They didn't mention any, but i guess as long as they are all pre cooked a minute and a half in super hot oven may be plenty to heat them up.

Thursday, February 10

Wait! My sandwich! Has it also appriciated in value? Please, oh please!

This is funny. So After AOL burns 315 million buying the huffington post, it's value immediately drops by 315 million. This could easily be a coincidence, it's not like aol's stock was likely to go up regardless, and this may turn out to be a good buy for aol, i doubt it, but maybe. But in the meantime this just has to make you chuckle.

Wednesday, February 9

Ironic, isn't it Smithers? This anonymous clan of slack-jawed troglodytes has cost me the election, and yet if I were to have them killed, I would be

This is an interesting article about the legality/constitutionality of all the health care waivers the obama administration is granting. I don't think it's really unconstitutional, the whole premise that the president is acting above the law, which isn't legal is easily negated by the fact that the president has pardon power. So he by definition has the power to say that some people who have broken the law don't need to be punished for it, and there is no constitutional limit to his pardon power, other than public opinion or legislatures trying to impeaching him. But the larger question remains, why should anyone be granted a waiver. If this law is good, why isn't it good for everyone. It creates a system which is inherently corrupt. If you pay off the right people then you won't be forced to adhere to the law. To some extent that may occur all the time, but this is legalizing it. Democrats claim they are against special interest groups running washington, but that is exactly what this is. Companies/unions with enough money to lobby in washington get waivers. It would be hard to create a more corrupt system if that was your goal.

Ice to meet you!

This isn't all of the Mcbain clips, i do wonder if these were all of the early ones, and then they added different clips later, but i don't care enough to actually find out.