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Find The Boots

Rantings from a few corporate types about life, technology, travel, guns, politics, and everything good in the world.

A Canadian Doctor Describes How Socialized Medicine Doesn't Work

Monday, July 30, 2007

Investor's Business Daily has an article about the transformation of a Canadian doctor into a believer in the free market:
I was once a believer in socialized medicine. As a Canadian, I had soaked up the belief that government-run health care was truly compassionate. What I knew about American health care was unappealing: high expenses and lots of uninsured people.

My health care prejudices crumbled on the way to a medical school class. On a subzero Winnipeg morning in 1997, I cut across the hospital emergency room to shave a few minutes off my frigid commute.

Swinging open the door, I stepped into a nightmare: the ER overflowed with elderly people on stretchers, waiting for admission. Some, it turned out, had waited five days. The air stank with sweat and urine. Right then, I began to reconsider everything that I thought I knew about Canadian health care.

I soon discovered that the problems went well beyond overcrowded ERs. Patients had to wait for practically any diagnostic test or procedure, such as the man with persistent pain from a hernia operation whom we referred to a pain clinic — with a three-year wait list; or the woman with breast cancer who needed to wait four months for radiation therapy, when the standard of care was four weeks.

Government researchers now note that more than 1.5 million Ontarians (or 12% of that province's population) can't find family physicians. Health officials in one Nova Scotia community actually resorted to a lottery to determine who'd get a doctor's appointment.

These problems are not unique to Canada — they characterize all government-run health care systems.
I lived in a small town in Canada for several years. We didn't have a doctor. The nearest doctor was 40 miles away, and he was only in his office every other Wednesday. You needed to get an appointment several weeks in advance. So if you were going to get sick with something, say pneumonia, you needed to plan well ahead. Of course, we could always drive 300 miles to the "Big City" and wait in an emergency room for a few days.

Yes, it was "free" (we won't talk about the crushing taxation), but what good is "free" if you can't get in to see a doctor?

Compare that to the US. I had a sports injury last fall. The day after I went to the doctor I had an MRI. I could have had it that afternoon, but I had a business meeting in my schedule I couldn't get out of. A week later I was at a top specialist, who suggested surgery the next Tuesday. Yes, I pay a lot for health insurance. It's a benefit I've had to work hard for.

It's funny how the same people who want us to have socialized medicine in the US are up in arms about the conditions at Walter Reed. I'll make this real simple: Walter Reed = Socialized Medicine. When the government runs health care you get the same level of service as you do at the DMV, the IRS, and the Social Security Administration. Why is this so surprising?

No one in the US is denied health care. Even the illegal aliens understand this. Just show up at an emergency room and you'll get care. True, that's not the optimal way of dealing with many issues, but it's far better than no doctor at all -- which is what Hillary would like to give us.

Hat top to GOP Bloggers for bird dogging this article.

   

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The Absolutely Best Click Wrap Agreement, Ever

Friday, July 27, 2007

I came across this when reading the registration page of a forum:
Forum Rules

1. Forum is a private, paid subscription forum. Before you proceed, read about the subscription and forum details here.

2. You can advertise in your sig and post affiliate links. We’re not d*cks about that. But make it topical . . . we know what spam is (in fact, we’re experts), so just be cool about it and we’ll get along just fine.

3. You may not republish anything you learn in this forum either in part or in full. The concepts and specifics discussed are to be kept private. Any leaks will be dealt with in the most severe manner available.

4. We may decide at any time that you suck and we don’t want you as a member any more. If this happens, your account will be suspended and you will no longer have access to anything here. Plus, you forfeit all subscription payments made. So don’t suck.

5. Your membership subscription is for you and you alone. If we find evidence of multiple people using an account, we will decide that you suck (see #4).

6. Some of the stuff on our forum is objectionable. Deal with it.

7. This forum is not for the discussion of breaking laws or engaging in criminal activity. We have enough sh*t to deal with without conspiring to commit any crimes. However, we don't know all the laws in every country; therefore posters own their own posts and are responsible for them.

8. The Owners are not responsible for anything – no matter what. If your sites gets banned, your businesses fails, you read something you don’t like, you get depression, you laugh out loud while drinking coffee and spit it out on your computer (thereby ruining it) or whatever else. . . then that’s your problem, not ours.

9. The owners reserve the right to remove, edit, move or close any thread or change anything for any reason or no reason at all at any time we please.

10. Reread numbers 3, 4 and 8 – we f*cking mean it.

11. No refunds whatsoever after you log in and view posts or after a new subscription period starts.

If you actually agree to that sh*t and still want to join, then check the damn box and click the register button. Just don’t go sayin that we never warned you.
I've edited to protect the guilty and for decorum.

I'm guessing their legal department didn't get a say in that.

It's a bit refreshing to read people who say what they mean.

   

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Good, Screw You Sheikh Yabootie

From yahoo:
MILAN (Reuters) - A Qatar sheikh held up a British Airways flight at Milan's Linate airport for nearly three hours after discovering three of his female relatives had been seated next to men they did not know.

When none of the other business class passengers agreed to swap seats, the sheikh, a member of Qatar's ruling family, went to the pilot, who had already started the engine, to complain, an airport official said.

But the pilot ordered him and his travelling companions, the three women, two men, a cook and a servant, off the plane.

The London-bound flight took off nearly three hours behind schedule on Thursday evening and around 50 of the 115 passengers missed connecting flights.

Traditions in the conservative Gulf Arab region bar women from mixing with unrelated men.
Look, I am the most polite frequent flyer in the world. And I'd have swapped seats for you (even a window seat in mid-cabin for one near the serving station) in a second. And that is simply because you asked, not because you're stuck in the 12th century with 19th century robber baron cash in the 21st century transportation market.

But because it's the polite thing to do - help people of other cultures be comfy. (You can look it up on wikipedia, Sheikh, because you probably have unfiltered porn-friendly internet, unlike your poor subjects there in triple word score land.)

But, my man, you made 50 people miss their connecting flights. That may be 50 families that have to wait a day to see daddy or mommy. You suck.

   

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Does His Brother Work at the Post Office

Tiny brain no obstacle to French civil servant

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A man with an unusually tiny brain managed to live an entirely normal life despite his condition, caused by a fluid buildup in his skull, French researchers reported on Thursday.

Scans of the 44-year-old man's brain showed that a huge fluid-filled chamber called a ventricle took up most of the room in his skull, leaving little more than a thin sheet of actual brain tissue.

"He was a married father of two children, and worked as a civil servant," Dr. Lionel Feuillet and colleagues at the Universite de la Mediterranee in Marseille wrote in a letter to the Lancet medical journal.
Photo

The man went to a hospital after he had mild weakness in his left leg. When Feuillet's staff took his medical history, they learned he had had a shunt inserted into his head to drain away hydrocephalus -- water on the brain -- as an infant.

The shunt was removed when he was 14.

So the researchers did a computed tomography (CT) scan and another type of scan called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). They were astonished to see "massive enlargement" of the lateral ventricles -- usually tiny chambers that hold the cerebrospinal fluid that cushions the brain.

Intelligence tests showed the man had an IQ of 75, below the average score of 100 but not considered mentally retarded or disabled, either.

"What I find amazing to this day is how the brain can deal with something which you think should not be compatible with life," commented Dr. Max Muenke, a paediatric brain defect specialist at the National Human Genome Research Institute.

"If something happens very slowly over quite some time, maybe over decades, the different parts of the brain take up functions that would normally be done by the part that is pushed to the side," added Muenke, who was not involved in the case.

   

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If I Were Not Already Married

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Wowza!
[Buying_Ice_Cream.jpg]

   

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Some Americans Are Born Here

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Others are born elsewhere and make their way here (legally):
Jacob Majok survived the Sudanese war that killed his parents.

Now he has made a decision that likely will put him back in a war zone: He enlisted in the U.S. Army.

He left Syracuse recently for Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., to begin basic training.

“I became an American citizen and I think it’s my duty to defend America,’’ said Majok, 25, one of the young Sudanese men referred to as the “Lost Boys’’ who began resettling in the United States in 2000.

“This world is changing and it has changed,’’ he said. “Our country has been at war over 23 years. If we decide to go to the army, it will be an opportunity to defend America and help the home country.’’

He signed up June 28 after graduating cum laude from Le Moyne College with a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry
.
Jacob, we're pleased to have you here. Good luck.

   

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Uh, John Doe Protection Please?

Not that it would stop me, but here are four dry runs we've heard about. Keeping in mind that we'll not have heard about the really scary ones....
• San Diego, July 7. A U.S. person — either a citizen or a foreigner legally here — checked baggage containing two ice packs covered in duct tape. The ice packs had clay inside them rather than the normal blue gel.

• Milwaukee, June 4. A U.S. person's carryon baggage contained wire coil wrapped around a possible initiator, an electrical switch, batteries, three tubes and two blocks of cheese. The bulletin said block cheese has a consistency similar to some explosives.

• Houston, Nov. 8, 2006. A U.S. person's checked baggage contained a plastic bag with a 9-volt battery, wires, a block of brown clay-like minerals and pipes.

• Baltimore, Sept. 16, 2006. A couple's checked baggage contained a plastic bag with a block of processed cheese taped to another plastic bag holding a cellular phone charger.


No terrorist threat here, move along, sheeple.

   

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Dr. Petit Should Have Had A Gun

Yes, there is evil in the world. Sometimes it comes calling. This week we learned the sad news that the Mother Strangled and Daughters Died From Smoke Inhalation in the CT home invasion.

Here's what's even more sad. The sole survivor, Dr. William A. Petit Jr., was unarmed:
William A Petit Jr., may have confronted the burglars before he was badly beaten with a baseball bat, tied up and left in the basement.
A .45 ACP beats a baseball bat every time. If only he had one. I'm fairly certain that while he was being beaten with a baseball bat that he wasn't thinking "Wow, I'm glad I don't have a gun, because it only would have escalated the situation."

If you're wondering, the Brady's give CT an A- for their gun laws. It's another tragic case of death and destruction foisted onto us by the libtards. My heart goes out to him, but Dr. Petit should have taken the responsibility to arm himself so that he could protect his family.

Yes, the bad guys didn't have guns. But in a world where there are no guns, brute force and a willingness to escalate to violence quickly will dominate. Unlike in the movies, there's no practical way to protect yourself and your family against multiple assailants without the use of a firearm.

So instead of cheering a +2 to the dead goblin count, we must now mourn the loss of two innocents. The libtards who tell us that law abiding citizens don't need guns should think about this one.

   

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You Tell Them All About It John!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

“Immigrants, not Australians, must adapt. Take it or leave it. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians. However, the dust from the attacks had barely settled when the ‘politically correct’ crowd began complaining about the possibility that our patriotism was offending others. I am not against immigration, nor do I hold a grudge against anyone who is seeking a better life by coming to Australia .

“However, there are a few things that those who have recently come to our country, and apparently some born here, need to understand. This idea of Australia being a multi-cultural community has served only to dilute our sovereignty and our national identity. And as Australians, we have our own culture, our own society, our own language and our own lifestyle.

“This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom.

“We speak mainly English, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society… learn the language!

“Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.

“We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us.

“If the Southern Cross offends you… then you should seriously consider a move to another part of this planet. We are happy with our culture and have no desire to change, and we really don’t care how you did things where you came from. By all means, keep your culture, but do not force it on others.

“This is our country, our land, and our lifestyle, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, the right to leave. If you aren’t happy here, then leave. We didn’t force you to come here . You asked to be here. So accept the country you accepted.”


Australian PM, John Howard

   

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Why We Win #347

Read it all:
Every fighter I have that flies right now has a targeting pod on it. That targeting pod allows our pilots to sit and stare to the point where — in coordination with our ground soldiers whether conventional or unconventional — our pilots are able to talk directly to them and tell them what he is seeing. And whatever our pilots are seeing on their targeting pods, the joint terminal attack controller [a ground-based forward air controller] is also seeing on his laptop. So the pilot puts a cursor over on a target, and the controller on the ground can say, “Not there. Next door over.” We literally have pilots now walking ground forces through cornfields and backyards telling them where insurgents are hiding.

Islamotards. Should have invested in high tech instead of goat bordellos.

   

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A Geek's Guide to Rejection

Monday, July 23, 2007

SEO Egghead has one of the funnier geek things I've seen in a while with "403 Forbidden: A Geek’s Guide to Rejection".

Read the comments, they're as funny as the article.

   

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A Few Pointers for Chitika

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Can anyone really afford to turn down business in this day and age?

I have a small project website that I've been developing on the side. It covers a niche market and it's a subject I like to talk about.

I've complained in the past about how Google adwords doesn't produce much revenue, so I decided to experiment with a few other services. I'm particularly interested in sites that use keywords to drive their ads instead of looking at the context as Google does. After a long search, I came across Chitika, which purports to be "the #1 Blog$ Company." I'm not sure what that means, but it was definitely worth a try. So I signed my little, new site up for their service.

I was a little more than shocked to receive the following in my inbox several days ago:
Thank you for your online submission. We have reviewed your website.

Unlike traditional banner and text-based advertising programs our merchandising-based Chitika | eMiniMalls program typically works best with established sites that contain exclusive authoritative content.

Based on past experience we found that our eMiniMalls program works best with (but not limited to) websites that have:
- significant traffic, preferably more than 10,000 impressions per month
- rich in content that relates to product merchandising, i.e., product reviews, product-centric discussions etc.
- family friendly content in English
- target audiences from US, Canada, UK, France, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, Italy, Netherlands, and Spain. As we expand our merchant base we will be able to cater to traffic from other regions as well in the future.

Also, in order to properly determine the effectiveness that our Chitika | eMiniMalls will have when placed on a particular site we need to see all content. Therefore, we cannot accept sites that are new or under construction.

(***PLEASE NOTE*** all of the above stated reasons may or may not pertain to your website. The above list summarizes the set of representative factors that are taken into consideration during the review process.)

In an effort to bring value to our publishers, we carefully consider each submission. During our review process we have determined that Chitika | eMiniMalls might not be a good match for your website.

We wish you the best of luck in monetizing your website, and thank you again for your interest in Chitika | eMiniMalls.

Regards,
Chitika Customer Service
----------------------------
Chitika, Inc. - Turning Page Views into Profits
I was fairly shocked. The blog isn't of an adult or even controversial nature. Yes, it's new, but there wasn't any reason someone wouldn't want their service carried on it, especially a new company competing with Google. It's already indexed by Google and has some strong PR5 links coming in. About half the blog entries are product reviews, so you'd think they'd be interested. Getting customers into a startup is pretty darn hard, so I'm impressed that they feel they can walk away from business. Or Not.

A little research on the company reveals that they're a four year old startup founded by Lycos engineers. They may be technically proficient, but they're a little lacking on the business side. In fact, they seem to be hitting a few bumps in the road. Well, Chitika, since you're obviously a little new at this game of business, I've got a few pointers for you:

1) What exactly is your marginal cost of adding a customer? A record in a database? Or are you afraid that you might receive ad loads from the sites? But wait, if you're getting traffic then that's a good thing, right? The cost of a non-performing site can't be more than $0.10/year. You spent more than that having someone review the site to turn it down.

2) You never know who you're talking to. Remember the story of the Harvard President who left a farmer and his wife waiting in his lobby for hours until they left on their own? They just wanted to talk to him so they could make a donation. Instead, they endowed Stanford. Turning down a site because "it's new" just runs the risk of garnering ill will from someone with a lot of other sites.

3) There's a reason companies advertise to kids. The products you use when you're young tend to be what you stay with. The cost of changing to a new product for a business is non-zero. If you think you're going to be able to poach successful and established sites from the advertisers they've already formed relationships with, you're in for a shock. My guess is the money will run out long before you figure this out.

4) Everybody has 10 friends. If you make someone happy, they might tell 1 or 2. If you make them mad, they'll tell everybody they know. Social networking has completely changed this. Witness the Jericho phenomenon -- these small groups of people were able to find each other, coordinate, and make a lot of noise. So in this new era, it's not 10 friends. In this case, the "nobody" blog owner you dis'd had another blog with thousands of daily readers.

5) Google sees everything. FTB gets indexed almost every day, and if our articles get picked up on Digg it's within the hour.

In the words of William H. Bonney: "Yoohoo. I'll make you famous!"

   

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Funny...

Friday, July 20, 2007

A fellow checked into a hotel on a business trip recently and was a bit lonely so he thought he'd get one of those girls you see advertised in the phone books under "Escorts and Massages".

He opened the phone book to an ad for a girl calling herself Erogonique, a lovely girl, bending over in the photo. She had all the right curves in all the right places, beautiful long wavy hair; long graceful legs all the way up. You know the kind. So he is in his room and figures, what the hell, he gave her a call.

"Hello?" A woman answers.

God she sounded sexy! "Hi, I hear you give a great massage and I'd like you to come to my room and give me one. No, wait, I should be straight with you.

I'm in town all alone and what I really want is sex. I want it hard, I want it hot, and I want it now. I 'm talking kinky the whole night long. You name it, we'll do it. Bring implements, toys, everything you've got in your bag of tricks. We'll go hot and heavy all night. Tie me up, wear a strap on, cover me in chocolate syrup and whip cream, anything you want baby. Now, how does that sound?"

She says, "That sounds fantastic, but for an outside line you need to press 9".

   

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Right, Because Social Worker are All Republicans

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Man, how silly can you get:
State welfare offices across the country are not offering millions of low-income Americans the opportunity to register to vote when applying for public assistance despite a federal law requiring them to do so

Because conservative ideology is so prevalent in the social worker and lifetime bureaucrat stratum.

I suspect this has a lot more to do with laziness than Bushitlermchimpy calling his minons of Rove together to violate the constitutional rights of poor people and illegal immigrants.

   

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I Think

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


if you have a minigun, rotating turret, and 250K rounds of ammo, then you don't need a flashing light.

Carpool lane just won't be the same.

   

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Susan Estrich is an Idiot

From a recent hit job on Thompson's wife, Jeri, some parsing:
What does it say about a man who's busy having babies only two years after being diagnosed with lymphoma?
Ok, let's parse that. He married her and had kids after surviving cancer. You wanna take a shot at John Edwards wife who is undergoing cancer treatment while serving as the man of the family on this campaign?
What does it say that he'd rather be with someone who wasn't even alive when JFK was shot, or at least was too young to remember where she was?
Why donks of a certain age are all cultural idiots. Barrack does not know where he was when Kennedy was shot, and neither does his wife. And news flash, Ms. aging gracefully-ish, that was not the defining moment in American history, despite what the JFK/RFK historically inaccuracy project would have us belive.

Uh, how about this: despite the fact that he was rich and famous and handsome and powerful he fell in love with her?&nbsp; Two adults, you know, that whole personal whatever mantra you ex-hippies like to chant about while you ruin our schools and chase the Boy Scouts out of society?
What does it say that he doesn't care that she doesn't remember the songs and the history and the fears we grew up with? Where does it leave those of us who do?
See also Barrack. Sorry, do The Beatles, Altamont, and Haight have a lot to do with Islamofascist Terrorism? Silly donkey.

Oh, and get your hair styled for your next headshot. You look like a soccer mom who couldn't find her baseball cap for carpool.

   

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iPhone - 1983 style

Can't make this stuff up....

200707171407





I still remember my wife giving me the go-ahead to buy a Newton. But, at the last minute, I declined. I was very happy with my various Palm Pilots over the years though.

   

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$10 Buck Cigar Tax?

Wow.

People will be making trips to Canada and Mexico to get their smokes.

Taxes are tough sometimes.

   

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$10 Tax Per Cigar?

Kim DuToit pointed us to Business: Cigarmakers in a panic. The cigar makers aren't the only ones.

A 53% tax will pretty much fold up the industry. The amount of money we'll lose on unemployment claims will exceed the revenue collected. Unlike cigarettes, cigars are not an addiction. Except for the hardcore types, most cigar smokers will give up the pleasures of a good smoke. So the amount of tax collected will be quite small, but we'll get more people unemployed. Sounds like a typical Democratic plan.

I'll bet this has something to do with Hillary being angry about Bill's humidor.

   

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Hmmm

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Hard to estimate which one you'd take.....

Yeah, you'd have to go batmobile.

   

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Why We Win, #412

Monday, July 16, 2007

Better Bombs: Scientists Develop Metal That Explodes on Impact

Kiss my afterburner, Islamofascistgoathumper.

How safe underground is your nuclear development bunker?

Not a fricking bit.

   

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Oowie Mama

   

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If This Is How They Are Winning

Then I'm happy for them....

   

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Lindsey Graham vs. Jim Webb

I never have had much use for Webb but Lindsey shows up well on this boo-haha.

Democrat libtards are trying to throw this one away again - liars, cowards, and fools. And that is the nicest thing I can think to say.

   

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Digital Identity

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Rich has another great article on Calculating Identity: Career Distinction

I ran two people through it. The first was me, in real life. A few years ago I had about 38K google results for my real name and they were mostly about me. I'm somewhat of an expert in my field and have written several articles. But for the last few years I've been stuck in the bowels of a megacorp and have done nothing for my digital identify. So IRL, I get a 6.

Enter Boondoggie. Boondoggie scores a whopping 9 on the scale. So my online persona is more digitally relevant than who I am in real life. I think I'm having an existential breakdown.

   

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Love the Aussies

Friday, July 13, 2007

Heh, indeed:
LAST month Australians endured our coldest June since 1950. Imagine that; all those trillions of tonnes of evil carbon we've horked up into the atmosphere over six decades of rampant industrialisation, and we're still getting the same icy weather we got during the Cold War.

Not that June should be presented as evidence that global warming isn't happening, or that we're causing it. Relying on such a tiny sample would be unscientific and wrong, even if it involves an entire freakin' continent's weather patterns throughout the course of a whole month, for Christ's sake.

   

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Texas Pole Dancing

Safe for work unless you're with PETA or the like ilk.......

Watch me!

   

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Beyond True

Confederate Yankee notes that Silky Pony is getting faux threats - which seems so approrpriate for a faux populist.
This is actually the third time Edwards campaign HQ has been evacuated. While the latest scare involved digital watches, the two previous threatening packages involved an inert white powder.

Chapel Hill Police have narrowed down the suspects in these three cases to the rest of the North Carolina.

If the 'threats' to Edwards were real threats then this would be very serious and not funny at all. But these are threats in the same way that Dillinger's soap gun was a threat to his guards.

I would also note that if a faux populist isn't safe in the heart of pseudo-intellectual Chapel Hill/Carrboro, he ain't safe anywhere.

   

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Robber Eats Cheese, Leaves

Which sounds like the punchline to a panda joke, but isn't.
A grand feast of marinated steaks and jumbo shrimp was winding down, and a group of friends was sitting on the back patio of a Capitol Hill home, sipping red wine. Suddenly, a hooded man slid in through an open gate and put the barrel of a handgun to the head of a 14-year-old guest.

So they offered him a glass of wine, he ate some cheese, got a group hug (!!) and left.

I'm really glad they ended up safe and sound. And I hate to sound snarky, but it's a good thing that handgun ownership is banned in the District.

   

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Steyn Make Sense

As usual:
So don't delude yourself: If the English and Belgians don't want to have children, it won't mean a return to bucolic pastoral vistas, it will just mean the places of the kids you never had will be taken by immigrants. If Yemen cuts its fertility rate, Yemen will empty out. If Britain cuts its fertility rate, Yemen will move in.

Read the whole thing.

   

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Root Cause

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Couldn't have said it better myself:
People who worry about root causes think that killing terrorists only creates more terrorists. Instead, we must find out why there are terrorists in the first place. Translation: it's America's fault.

Because the root cause of all that's bad in the world, for a root causer - is always America.

   

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Just Realized Something Horrible

Both of my favorite Mexican 'straunts use illegal labor.

Crap.

I'm gonna miss my monster burrito.

Why?

Well, last year I decided that I would no longer participate in the illegal alien support process. I can't do much about who plucks my chickens, but I can avoid businesses (roofing, 'straunts, yard work, etc) where there is massive presence of illegal labor.

Still gonna miss my monster taco.

   

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No More Nukes In Europe?

Well, aside from French reactors and incoming Iranian MIRVS that is.

Turns out, according to BlackFive that the US may have drawn down its arsenal to some 300 60's era nukes. Which are probably really just Jihada fodder for when the Islamofascists finally take over a country 'over there' as opposed to being useful weapons.

Name one other thing from the 60's that is still dangerous. Ok, John Kerry and Keith Richards. Besides dinosaurs.

But good news anyway. Less and less reason to prop up non-propagating socialist regimes that hate our country. Time to get our boys out of Europe and back out of NATO and pay attention to the tough stuff. Let the Belgian band run it for a while.

   

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Jessie Funny

Jesse Jackson has a heart attack and dies. He immediately goes to hell, where the devil is waiting for him. "I don't know what to do here" says the devil. "You are on my list, but I have no room for you. You definitely have to stay here, so I'll tell you what I'm going to do.

I've got three folks here who weren't quite as bad as you. I'll let one of them go, but you have to take their place. I'll even let YOU decide who leaves."

Jesse thought that sounded pretty good, so the devil opened the door to the first room.

In it was Ted Kennedy and a large pool of water. He kept diving in, and surfacing, empty handed. Over, and over, and over he dove in and surfaced with nothing. Such was his fate in hell.

"No" Jesse said. "I don't think so. I'm not a good swimmer, and I don't think I could do that forever."

The devil led him to the door of the next room. In it was Al Gore with a sledgehammer and a room full of rocks. All he did was swing that hammer, time after time after time.

"No, I've got this problem with my shoulder. I wouldbe in constant agony if all I could do was break rocks all day," commented Jesse.

The devil opened a third door. Through it, Jesse saw Bill Clinton, lying on the floor with his arms tied over his head, and his legs restrained in a spread-eagle pose. Bent over him was Monica Lewinsky, doing what she does best.

Jesse looked at this in shocked disbelief, and finally said "Yeah, I can handle this."

The devil smiled and said . . .

"OK, Monica, you're free to go"

   

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Read a book, brush your teeth, raise your kids, drink water, brush your teeth, use deodorant.

What *has* the world come to?

Very NSFW language.

   

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Whatchu Staring At?

Thanks Rodge!

   

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Duke Energy: Stuck in the 1990s

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I guess I live in a high tech, Web 2.0 world. Back in the 1990s a lot of companies were struggling with data integration in order to connect their web based customer service systems to the back office. That's all pretty much old news. Or at least I thought.

I refuse to write paper checks. Well, at least it's extremely rare. People that are afraid to give out their credit card number over a secure https page because of a fear of identity theft will gleefully hand out slips of paper with their name, address, driver's license number, and bank account number to complete strangers. Most modern vendors don't even process checks -- they just scan your check and then process it as a bank draft. The banks charge extra to handle paper.

My monthly bills are paid by bank draft over the web. I've got most of my vendors set up on direct bill -- they send me an email of how much the bill is and pull out the cash. A few vendors, like Duke Energy, are so stuck in the 1990s that they can't even handle a system like that, so my bank provides the service of auto paying the bill that gets routed to them.

This way of doing things has worked for years and is pretty much the way the modern world lives. But this week, while traveling, I got hit with a Catch-22 from good old Duke Energy. For some strange reason, the auto pay system hasn't paid my power bill for the last two months. I suspect Duke Energy and my bank had some sort of problem, but I didn't find out about this until I got a frantic call from She Who Must Be Obeyed while changing planes on Monday that Duke Energy had called and was threatening to disconnect our power. Hot summer, in the south, no power = no air conditioning and great suffering. This would be a Disaster, with a capital D.

No problem, I whipped out my laptop and went to the Duke Energy site and while not understanding why this hadn't been paid in the last two months I went ahead and processed a payment to deduct the outstanding amount from my bank account. Then I caught my flight.

Later that night I asked She Who Must Be Obeyed for forgiveness and assured her that I was not a deadbeat and that the wonderful cooling air would not be cut off while I was out of town.

This morning I awoke to a frantic email that indicated that the wonderful folks from Duke Energy had called the Boondoggie estate and demanded payment or the power would be disconnected on Friday. I went to the Duke Energy website to check the status of the payment. What I saw absolutely flabbergasted me.

My payment, made on Monday, was still in "processing" mode. The website had now updated to show that the expected payment date for my in process payment was now Friday the 13th, the very day they had threatened to turn off the power.

Anywhere else on the web a vendor can process a bank draft in microseconds. Go to a Walmart and hand them a check or debit card and the payment will show up in your bank account by the time you get home. But Duke Energy is so stuck in the 1990s that they require at least 2 full business days to process a bank draft. The level of sheer incompetence required to have this kind of business process in 2007 absolutely astounded me. If I can get money to a vendor in India this afternoon, why can't the mighty Duke Energy, with a monopoly and government guaranteed earnings, process something this simple in a timely manner?

So I called the customer service number. That wasn't easy to find, searching the billing site only reveals an interface to send them an email, even though they claim to have people standing by 24 hours a day to answer my questions. One has to retrieve the actual customer service number from a bill.

So I called the number and found out about their racket. Remember the first call on Monday when they wanted payment over the phone? Same deal with calling the phone service. You can give them a bank draft or a credit card over the phone, plus a service charge and they will credit your account immediately.

So here's the scenario. Call your customer on Monday, threatening with a disconnect, which can be avoided if you pay right then and pay an extra service charge. If the customer doesn't want to pay the service charge, they're screwed because your web payment policies put a lag in how long it takes to process their payment. Or the customer is foolish enough to send you a paper check, which won't arrive in time and then you'll tack on another two days to process that. Their best case is that they get you disconnected, because then they can charge a hefty reconnect fee. Their worst case is that they'll get the service charge because you'll call them like I did and make sure that the payment happens in time.

What are the chances that they changed their interface with the bank hoping this would happen? Getting 500K customers to pay an extra $3.50 in service charges is not small change.

So an hour later I went back to the web site. Their web site has no clue that I've made a phone payment. If there are any IT people from Duke Energy reading this blog, I'm laughing at your pathetic technical skills. My mother has better data integration than you do.

I suspect there's an executive somewhere within Duke Energy whose bonus partially depends upon how much they rake in on extra fees. I guess I should just admire him, because while I'm blogging this from a hotel room on the road he's sipping a martini on his yacht, paid for by my "convenience fee." Here buddy, this round is on me.

   

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I Would Not Go That Far

The sad truth is that if the FBI really is following anyone on the American left, it is engaging in a huge waste of time and personnel. No matter what it claims for a self-image, in reality it’s the saddest collection of cowering, ineffectual ninnies ever assembled under one banner on God’s green earth.

They're helping the Al-Quaeda guys plenty. Americans, not so much.

Read the whole thing - some libtard navel gazing that is on target. How on target?
What we call American liberalism is really a kind of genetic mutant, a Frankenstein’s monster of incongruous parts – a fat, affluent, overeducated New York/Washington head crudely screwed onto the withering corpse of the vanishing middle-American manufacturing class.

Pretty on target.

   

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Jose Can You See?

Jose’ and Carlos are panhandling at the freeway off ramp, each holding a sign. Jose drives a Mercedes, lives in a mortgage-free house and has a lot of dinero to spend. Carlos only brings in 2 to 3 dollars a day.

Carlos asks Jose’, how does he bring home a suitcase full of $10 bills every day? Jose’ says, "Look at your sign."
"I have no work and a wife & 6 kids to support."
Carlos looks at Jose's sign. It reads:
"I only need another $10.00 to move back to Mexico."

   

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Rope, Tree, Assembly Required

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Someone shot an airman on the 4th of July.

Betcha a zillion million bucks they are anti-war, vote Democrat, and comment on Kos.

   

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Another Democrat Converted

Sure, he's a TX Democrat (think LBJ) so that is a bit different from a MA donk, but you gotta think this guy is gonna change his tune:
HOUSTON – A state lawmaker shot a man he says was trying to steal copper wiring from the house he is building, police said Monday. Rep. Borris Miles, D-Houston, told police he was working on the second floor Sunday night when he heard a noise on the lower floor and saw two men trying to steal the wiring. One of the men threw a pocketknife at Mr. Miles when confronted, a Houston police spokesman said. Mr. Miles, a former law enforcement officer who is licensed to carry a concealed weapon, shot the man in the left leg, police said. The wounded suspect was being treated at a Houston hospital. Mr. Miles voted against the "castle doctrine" that gives residents stronger rights to defend their property. The law goes into effect Sept. 1.
Also goes to show that cops aren't the greatest shot - hit him in the leg at 15 feet. And only fired one round. Personally I'd be wound up enough to try to put 10 in the X ring.

Actually, it occurs to me that this probably wasn't a "house" in the sense of the castle doctrine. As it was under construction there was probably no occupancy certificate. And it is also unlike a tent or caravan in that he wasn't sleeping in it or otherwise living in it.

Betcha a zillion he gets no charges though. Which is good, but not what thee and me would experience.

   

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The Internet

Is surely chock-full of strange stuff. SFW.

   

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Yon Tells It True

Monday, July 09, 2007

And, best of all, tells you what the libtard MSM won't report - both the good and the bad.
After the briefings, General Petraeus headed downtown to an area where many of the buildings had been made into bombs. Most VIPs will not dare leave base, but the top generals and command sergeant majors in this war all roll downtown taking their chances with getting blown sky-high.

American military leadership at its best.
After years of experience, the terrorists had prepared Baqubah to an extent greater than either Fallujah or Ramadi had been. During one of the briefings Saturday, General Petraeus mentioned that Baqubah was probably the most rigged city of the entire war. Another officer at the briefing said there is so much explosives residue in Baqubah that the bomb dogs get confused....This combat-experienced brigade outsmarted the enemy.

Surprise, troopies learn. People forget that the US military is primarily a learning machine - they spend 98% of their time training - it would be surprising (and French?) if they didn't learn how to learn.
I’d like to say more, but the enemy will get no help from these pages.

Read it all, and give to help him stay and tell us all the truth.
That certainly makes Yon different than the NYT or donk Senators.

   

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The Flaming Islamotard Was Probably Pretty Confused

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Right before they put the boot in on 'em.

   

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The Gore Effect

Saturday, July 07, 2007

You know what I mean - he visits a place and global warming disappears:
Al Gore go away,
Find some other place to stay,

We like it hot and we don’t care,
We not want live like polar bear.

   

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It's a Wonder

This year, we had my wife's friends over for our 4th of July Cookout.&nbsp; My wife is artistic, so her friends are artistic.sp; It was a white wine 4th, something a little different than years past.

Inevitably, the discussion went to politics. I politely held my tongue when one of her friends asked why anyone would want to carry around a gun or what they would need it for. I wanted to blurt out "I'll bet all the VA Tech students wish they'd had a gun!" but I didn't.

After the party was over and we were cleaning up I said to my wife "I can't believe how many liberals we just had at our house." She said "It's a wonder you survived!"

We both just looked at each other and laughingly said together "It's a wonder they survived!"

   

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Not much to add

Thursday, July 05, 2007

   

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Never Shun Your Barber

I doubt Silky Pony Edwards really grew up in the south:
"I'm disappointed and I do feel bad. If I know someone, I'm not going to say I don't know them," he said. "When he called me 'that guy,' that hit my ears. It hurt." He paused and then added, "I still like him. . . . I don't want to hurt him."
Now, this guy has been cutting J's hair for four years (I've had two barbers in the last 28 years and would have happily only had one if the first guy hadn't passed) which is a fairly long period of time in the $175/cut bracket.

But doesn't Silky know what happens if you anger the guy working on your hair? The only word I have for you is: Andy.

   

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Happy 4th of July

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

I'm not actually in the US right now (long trip) and I can't tell you how much I miss home.

Truly we are blessed. And, while I can't say I enjoy paying taxes, I do keep in mind that they help people other than Ted Stevens: our military, the old, the crippled, the police, the young, the truly desperate. And I think that helping those people is one of the hallmarks of American spirit.

Go Team USA!

   

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Why I don't Have an iPhone

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

David Kirk has this tale of terror from buying an iPhone.:
After being on hold listening to a painful piano music loop for 52:01, the music suddenly stops and I hear the phone going through.

A boy’s voice came on the phone and said “Hello?” In the background, I can hear the voices of many support staff chatting in the distance.

Surprised to be speaking with an obvious child, I said, “Hi, there.”

He said, “Oh” like somebody who did something they should not have.

Click. Dial-tone.
Yes, I quoted a lot of his article, but go read the link and enjoy the comments too.

Yes, the iPhone looks nifty. And it's small. But I'm still wondering why I should replace my Motorola Q that can do everything the iPhone does. Perhaps it's not as flashy, but it's a lot less expensive. And it plays Slingbox videos. If it supported Sim and CDMA at the same time and also had wifi it would be perfect. How about a cell phone where I can install multiple Sim cards and chose from a menu when I boot up?

I was at a meeting the other day when the subject of cell phones came up. Our cell phone gurus at MegaCorp have decided that the iPhone won't be an approved device. So to get one, I'll either need another job or an excellent exercise in boot hiding. I wonder how many of these iPhones are being snapped up by college students and independent tech geeks? And is the market large enough for Apple not to get big Corporate America behind their product?

   

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If it Becomes Necessary

Monday, July 02, 2007

Great quote:
if it becomes necessary to shoot someone, then you should do that person the courtesy of shooting them with a .45.

   

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Laughing Bullets

New Scientist tells us about laughing bullets:
Smart Non-Lethal Bullets. These would apparently leave their targets battered and bruised but also, oddly, laughing.

These bullets, developed under a 2002 project, would have a soft nose that collapsed upon impact. Instead of penetrating like a normal bullet, they would deliver a substantial (but non-lethal) impact and also burst open to release a chemical agent - proposals include laughing gas or malodorants.
Funding for the project was cut when it was pointed out that we could have the same effect on our enemies by showing them poll numbers that indicate that we take Hillary Clinton seriously.

   

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You Know You're Having a Bad Day When

Your identity has been stolen...

And now all your friends like you more.

   

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Rubber Duckie, You're the One!

The Daily Mail reports that Thousands of rubber ducks to land on British shores after 15 year journey:
The armada of 29,000 plastic yellow ducks, blue turtles and green frogs broke free from a cargo ship 15 years ago.

Since then they have travelled 17,000 miles, floating over the site where the Titanic sank, landing in Hawaii and even spending years frozen in an Arctic ice pack.

And now they are heading straight for Britain. At some point this summer they are expected to be spotted on beaches in South-West England.
That will make for some interesting duck hunting this year!

   

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Al Qaeda Summer Surprise

Oh joy, there's a report circulating that Al Qaeda is planning a spectacular attack for the summer. Chertoff, of course, tells us not to worry.

The same Chertoff who told us border security wasn't all that important.

But I still doubt it. Al Qaeda doesn't get it. They're trying for something spectacular, when in fact they'd have much more of an effect with lots of small, effective attacks. I'm not talking about the idiots that crashed an SUV into the airport in Scotland and only managed to burn themselves, or perhaps the same idiots that couldn't even get a car load of gasoline and propane to ignite. But instead of trying to get a nuke into an American city -- a very difficult undertaking -- they instead started using materials that can be purchased at your local Walmart, we'd be in trouble.

The attacks in the UK show that our strategy is working. We've killed so many of them, and pinned down so many more in Iraq, that the ones they have left to send can't even get propane to catch fire.

   

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Happy Canada Day

Toques, tobaggons, and Molson Ex - thanks you, northern neighbors!

I believe this is the annual Race to the Tim Hortons.....

   

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