Oct 02 2008

Signs Of Intelligent Life On Earth?

Category: Congress,corruptionamuzikman @ 11:40 pm

Thank God for Senator Tom Coburn.  Thank God there is someone in Congress willing to speak truth and lay the blame squarely where it belongs.  Please read the Oklahoma Senator’s press release about the so-called “bailout” bill v.2, now before Congress.

This is a man who gets it!  Why are there so few who do?  We have a largely incestuous, hypocritical, power-hungry, pompous, arrogant, self-aggrandizing and immoral group of so-called leaders (called Congress) who, having abdicated their Constitutionally-mandated role and having gotten all of us in this financial mess now declare they are going to provide the solution!  Preposterous! Congress has no business (and no right) whatsoever to be involved in home mortgage lending in ANY capacity! (vis. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac)

As I stated in an earlier blog we as citizens do have the ability to respond in a variety of ways.  We can simply bend over, grab our collective ankles and cry, “Thank you, sir. May I have another?” as these “leaders” stick it to us by pledging our money to correct their unconstitutional mismanagement.  Or we can go to the ballot box in November with a shout of, “I’m mad as Hell and I’m not going to take it any more! and vote OUT the offenders and their willing accomplices.  We don’t have to take this!

Is anyone out there?  Is anyone listening?  Is this thing on?  Hello?…………..John, Sarah, are you there?

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Oct 02 2008

Space, the USA, the future, the shuttle, and Russia

Category: Congress,Russia,shuttle,space,technologyharmonicminer @ 9:13 am

You may have seen this very interesting article on the future of space exploration featuring an interview with the head of NASA.

However, the NASA head lamented the end of the space shuttle program in 2010, concerned that in the interim period at least the United States will be reliant on other nations to reach the heavens.

“There will be a gap. I don’t like it but there it is. For the US to lose even for a period of time independent access to space, I don’t think it’s a good thing.”

In the time between the shuttle retires and the new generation of US spacecraft — Orion — gets off the ground, US astronauts will have to rely on the Russian Soyuz spacecraft to reach the International Space Station.

“I think that is a dangerous position to be in,” said Griffin. “If anything at all in that five-year period goes wrong with the Russian Soyuz … that is a great concern.”

As much as it costs, NASA is a tiny part of the federal annual budget. It is really stupid for us to have worked ourselves into any form of dependence on Russia, given its rising bellicosity, its use of Venezuela as a wedge into the Americas, its rearming, and its obvious bad intentions.   We will have cause to wish that past Congress critters had been a bit wiser, a bit less parsimonious in NASA funding, and a whole lot more far-seeing.

Apollo was canceled because Congress wanted to spend the money on social program, essentially. The Shuttle was a bizarre compromise between the military and NASA. And Congress has continued to starve NASA of funding for research and development of new space transportation systems, while finding money for ever expanding entitlement programs costing HUGELY more.  Just the PORK in every annual budget for the last 30 years would have seen us already on MARS and exploring the asteroids for resources.

The name for spending money on social short-term political benefit, instead of on R&D, is “eating your seed corn”.  You can’t plant it after you eat it.

Maybe that’s part of the reason the price of corn has gone up.

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Oct 02 2008

Passive Praise for Ifill by the AP

Category: Uncategorizedharmonicminer @ 8:38 am

McCain criticizes Ifill – Yahoo! News

Hours ahead of the vice presidential debate, Sen John McCain (R-Ariz.) criticized the selection of PBS’ Gwen Ifill as moderator because she is writing a book called “The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama.”

“Frankly, I wish they had picked a moderator that isn’t writing a book favorable to Barack Obama, let’s face it,” McCain said on “Fox & Friends.” “But I have to have to have confidence that Gwen Ifill will handle this as the professional journalist that she is. …

“Life isn’t fair, as I mentioned earlier in the program.””

Ifill is host of “Washington Week” and star of “The NewsHour” and is viewed as one of Washington’s fairest journalists.

The last line is simply laughable. “Is viewed” as fair by WHOM? The AP doesn’t bother to mention this.

During the Democratic National Convention, Ifill offered her neutral analysis on NBC News before Michelle Obama’s speech: “A lot of people have never seen anything that looks like a Michelle Obama before. She’s educated, she’s beautiful, she’s tall, she tells you what she thinks and they hope that she can tell a story about Barack Obama and about herself.”

During the Republican National Convention, the PBS ombudsman fielded numerous complaints about Ifill’s coverage of Sarah Palin’s speech. Wrote Brian Meyers of Granby, Ct.:

“I was appalled by Gwen Ifill’s commentary directly following Gov. Sarah Palin’s speech. Her attitude was dismissive and the look on her face was one of disgust. Clearly, she was agitated by what most critics view as a well-delivered speech. It is quite obvious that Ms. Ifill supports Obama as she struggled to say anything redemptive about Gov. Palin’s performance. I am disappointed in Ms. Ifill’s complete disregard for journalistic objectivity.”

Having watched both of the broadcasts just referenced, I concur with the description of Ifill’s behavior.

Fairness is in the eye of the beholder. What I behold is someone with a serious conflict of interest, demonstrated partisanship, i.e., the usual main stream journa-hack.