Tuesday, 31 March 2009

In Passing

Time to boot Connecticut?

First they “gave” us Chris Dodd.

Next they “gave” us Richard Blumenthal.

Now it’s Rosa DeLauro.

Strike three. What say, “Connecticut, you’re outta here”?

(Maybe Quebec would take ’em?)

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Add this to your “worry list”

Yet another kick-this-one-down-the-road problem that’s rapidly becoming unavoidable: Medical care for the elderly.

Coming in two years:  Not enough doctors.
Money is no good if there’s no place to spend it.

Coming in ten years:  Not enough money.
A federal Ponzi scheme with a population pyramid is sustainable, but a population barely at replacement birth rate is not.

But look on the bright side: Problem #2 will “solve” problem #1, provided  we continue “waiting!”

Via:  MOM

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In Passing

Government of MEN, not LAWS... oh, wait!

From NewsBusters:

[Glenn] BECK:  Is that [the AIG bonus payments] against the law?

[Connecticut Attorney General Richard] BLUMENTHAL:  Well, it is against public policy. And it is unsanctioned by law.

BECK:  Is that against the law?

BLUMENTHAL:  It should be against the law.

BECK:  Is it against the law?

BLUMENTHAL:  It’s against the public policy and against the taxpayer...In my view it is unrequired by law.

BECK:  It is a yes or no question. Counselor, it is a yes or no question.  Is it against the law?

BLUMENTHAL:  It is not against the law and I have never said that it is against the law, and I have never said that we would bring an action.

BECK:  Then you know what you should do?  You should enforce the law.  You shouldn't use your bully pulpit to gain popularity.
Unsurprisingly, Mr. Blumenthal is a Democrat.

Via: IP

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Sunday, 29 March 2009


So Sunday afternoon came, and...

...after all the whining[1] about nobody showing up...

Not bad.

[1] Actually, I have it on good authority that Roberta X never whines. And I was told I should make that clear. That she doesn’t. And I shouldn’t imply it. (Not unless I want to walk home with my teeth in my hat, that is.)

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Saturday, 28 March 2009


Random Linkage - March 28, 2009

Some Saturday afternoon amusement:

Paco channels Shelley:

I met a commuter from Maryland,
Who said: Two vast and headless ears of stone
Lie on the Mall. Near them on a stand,
Half sunk, a shattered teleprompter sits...

Andrea has figured out the new taboos of (one sort of) science fiction:
Anyway, here are what I think are the new taboos in the sort of writing that gets people nominated for awards and written up in kewl mags but not read very much (not that actually being read by mundanes really matters, and their feeble minds would be too shocked by our ground-breaking scene of group sex with humans, robots, many-tentacles-beings, and hermaphrodites cloned from humanoid sheep, which climaxed with an orgasm-cannibalism scene)...
(But then there’s always this.)

introductory phrase goes here:
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula eget dolor. Aenean massa. Cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Donec quam felis, ultricies nec, pellentesque eu, pretium quis, sem. Nulla consequat massa quis enim. If you don’t get it, click the link. Via Megan via Attila Girl. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu. In enim justo, rhoncus ut, imperdiet a, venenatis vitae, justo. Nullam dictum felis eu pede mollis pretium. Integer tincidunt. Cras dapibus. Vivamus elementum semper nisi.
Fired too many people, huh?

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Blogger (again): They know about it, and it’s not just me

Sighted on Blogger’s Known Issues page:

“Disable word verification...”  Noooo, don’t think so...

Previously:  1.2

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Friday, 27 March 2009


Reminder: Blogmeet March 29


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The Press

Reporting the housing figures- hiding the bad news

Home sales “up” in February!  Oh really?

A parade of the mathematically innumerate business writers (and even worse headline writers!) continue to misread data. The latest evidence? New Home Sales.

After incorrectly reporting the Existing Home Sales, the mainstream media misread the Census department report of New Homes.

No, New Home Sales data did not improve.  In fact, they were not only not positive, they were actually horrific.  The year over year number was a terrible down 41%.  Sales from this same period a year ago have nearly been halved.

Why did the media report this as positive?  If you only read the headline number, you saw a positive datapoint:  February was plus 4.7% over January... - Barry Ritholz[1]
...but that number falls within the Bureau’s margin of error of ±18.3%, which means there may have been no improvement at all.

Ritholz says it’s incompetence, not agenda, noting that
...many of these folks incorrectly misinformed you that Housing wasn’t getting worse in 2006, 2007 and 2008 — just as Home sales and prices went into an historic freefall.
Still, it’s interesting that nobody seems to have gotten it right.  What do they do, copy from each other?

And then there’s this chart, from the front page[2] of today’s Wall Street Journal...

Pretty dramatic, huh?  Except the chart starts with January, not with the market’s 2007 high of 14165.[3][4]  Also note the label “Start of bull market.”  Anybody ready to put some money on that?  Safer to say: “Start of the present rally.”

To be fair, the accompanying article (and its headline)[2] are more pessimistic (in paragraph 2):
To many skeptical investors, it seems to be a Cinderella bull market, however: one that will turn out to be an illusion when the clock strikes midnight.
and more accurate (in paragraph 5)
Still, the Dow remains down 44% from the high of 14164.52 it reached in 2007.
But how many readers will just glance at the chart, and believe they’ve got the whole story?

Related:  Changing the recession narrative? (Via: Instapundit)

Ritholz link from Howard.
[1]  Ritholz’ own headline also fails the accuracy test:  “New home sales fell 41% in February, 2009”  No they didn’t.  They were 41% below (“fell from”?) the February 2008 figure, but near steady (“the same as”?) January 2009.

“Bears Are Wary as Bull Returns • Dow is up 21% in 13 days in quickest rally since 1938, but doubts of strength persist” by E.S. Browning, The Wall Street Journal, March 27, 2009, page 1 [not found online]

[3]  ...which would have put the top of the chart above the top of the page. (snark!)

[4]  And what about that suppressed zero...?  After all, stocks weren’t valueless on March 9th.

Posted by: Old Grouch in The Press at 16:30:58 GMT | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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In Passing

More United Nations oxymoronism

...with emphasis on the “moron” part.

United Nations “Human Rights” Commission comes out against freedom of speech.

So tell me again why we continue to have anything to do with this bunch of losers? 
“Because getting beat up makes anti-American progressives feel good?”
I see...

Via:  Don Surber

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Thursday, 26 March 2009


“I am the very model...”

DoggerelPundit channels William S. Gilbert:

I am the very model of a modern Media-Journalist,
I‘ve information biased, bogus, banal and paternalist,
I know the talking heads and every bureau puke and oracle
from A-B-C to C-N-N in order categorical;
I’m very well acquainted, too, with schedules for sabbatical,
I live to write a sentence that’s both simple and grammatical,
I’m good at leading questions, and my team puts out a lot o’ news,
With many damning facts for which, at times, fact-checking’s not in use!...
the rest...

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 15:22:15 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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