January 30, 2009

January 28, 2009

Winter Fun

Every kid should experience the snow fort.

Flotsam and Jetsam

The Return of Snowzilla. Sometimes you just have to say kiss my ass. Via The Anchorage Daily News

US Airway recovery photos Via Maggies Farm

The Alaska Airlines Salmon Jet

Thought for the day: Men are like fine wine . . . They start out as grapes, and it's up to the women to stomp the crap out of them until they turn into something acceptable to have dinner with. Via "The 16 Things it Took Me Over 50 Years to Learn" @ Last of the Few

January 27, 2009

Harkin Votes Against Geithner.

WASHINGTON, DC - Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) released the following statement tonight after voting against Timothy Geithner to serve as Secretary of the U.S. Treasury. “I strongly believe that, save in extraordinary circumstances, the President should have the right to select his own team. President Obama believes that Mr. Geithner is the best person for this job, and it pains me to go against the President’s wishes on this matter. “I believe that Mr. Geithner is a person of obvious talent and experience, and I bear no ill will toward him whatsoever.

However, after careful deliberation, I simply could not overcome my very serious reservations about this nominee for two reasons. Mr. Geithner made serious errors of judgment in failing to pay his taxes, and he made serious errors in his job as chief regulator of the financial institutions at the heart of the current financial crisis.

This was the issue that the Republicans should have been screaming from the mountaintops from the day that Mr Giethner was nominated. But nooooo. They pussyfoot around his tax malfeasance while the Wallstreet genius claims that he can't figure out how to use Turbotax (Hell even I can use Turbotax, make me the Secretary) when the real issue is that his fingerprints are all over the economic meltdown. Meanwhile we are led to believe that he is the only one capable of leading the economy out of the crapper. This is the "you broke it you fix it" method of human resource management. In the real world he would have been fired NOT PROMOTED!~~

I can't believe I'm saying this but I agree with Tom Harkin. The president should have wide latitude when he sends his nominees to the senate for consent, be they cabinet appointees or judicial nominees, but the purpose of the exercise is to determine if the candidate for the office is qualified and of good character. Mr Giethner is neither. It took the likes of Democrat Tom Harkin to point that out and the Republicans that voted for him failed in their responsibilities.

Message to the World

The following asinine "Message to the World" landed in the in box the other day.

Message to the World: Service Restored!

Dear World:We, the United States of America, your top quality supplier of the ideals of liberty and democracy, would like to apologize for our 2001-2008 interruption in service. The technical fault that led to this eight-year service outage has been located, and the software responsible was replaced November 4. Early tests of the newly installed program indicate that we are now operating correctly, and we expect it to be fully functional on January 20. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the outage. We look forward to resuming full service and hope to improve in years to come. We thank you for your patience and understanding.


Not willing to let the reality impaired writer go unanswered I have crafted a more realistic message to the world.

Dear Arab World:

We, the United States of America, your top quality supplier of the ideals of liberty and democracy, would like to apologize for the 2001-2008 interruption of your caliphate restoration project which was proceeding splendidly before our little hissy fit in 2001. The technical fault that led to this eight-year interruption was the recovery of the previously misplaced Presidential testicles that were discovered in the Presidential humidor in late January of 2001. We want you to know that that whole War on Terror thing was truly a misunderstanding. So to facilitate your future successes the Presidential testicles are once again safely secured in the hands of our Secretary of State, the CIA is being converted into a Starbucks, and your friends visiting Guantanamo should be home in time for Hajj. We thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter and as always have a Happy Jihad.


January 26, 2009

A Look at Presidential Approval Ratings

Gallop announced that President B.HO has started his term with a 68% approval rating. That sounds pretty impressive, but how does it stack up with previous presidents in their first term.
(If anyone can tell me how to paste an Excel doc. into Blogger pls let me know)

Going back to JFK we find the following bounce ie. the difference between the presidential popular vote and the approval rating at inauguration at the beggining of the first term.

Presidential Bounce
Johnson +13
Nixon +17
Carter +21
Reagan +4
Bush I +8
Clinton +20
Bush II +7
Obama +15

Bounce Mean:
All Presidents +14
Democrats +18
Republican +9

All presidents gain some support as Americans typically rally around the new president. Despite reports of republican partisanship it is obvious that Republicans are more apt to wish the new president well by a 9 point spread. President Obama has a bounce only 1 point higher than the average of all presidents and 6 points lower than Carter that took over a similar political climate.

Bounce Median:
All Presidents +15
Democrats +20
Republicans +7.5

The more interesting figure however is that out of these nine presidents Obama falls right in the middle of presidential bounce despite reports of the messiahs overwhelming support. In fact rates in the lower half of the five democratic democratic presidents edging out Johnson for last place by 2 points. Johnson had Vietnam but what is it that prevented the hyped one from reaching the level of Kennedy or even a Clinton?
If there is one certainty B.HO will have to act and acting will lead to the inevitable decline as his predecessors show here.

"How Presidents Stack Up" Graph courtesy the Wall Street Journal
Presidential Election results courtesy:

January 24, 2009

The War is Not Over

One of those poor tortured souls released from Gitmo has taken over the "I kill you" concession in Yemen and our military just sent American aircraft over a sovereign nation and sent a missile down the chimney of some foreign citizens possibly killing women and children. I'll wager that the lefts black and white worldview will increasingly take on subtle shades of gray. President Obama is going to find that it is one thing to rail against the supposed abuses or failings of a wartime president in an innaugural address but it is quite another to uphold the oath of office.
What Obama does not understand and what George Bush was not able to articulate is that this conflict should not be viewed in the context of two wars. One war in Afghanistan and another war in Iraq. Or as Obama believes one war that is somehow a good war and the other a bad war. The fact is we have a war, what Samuel Huntington called a "Clash of Civilizations". (I know we shouldn't use terms like that lest we create more jihadis) In 1993 Huntington wrote;
“The interactions between civilizations vary greatly in the extent to which they are likely to be characterized by violence. Economic competition clearly predominates between the American and European sub civilizations of the West and between both of them and Japan. On the Eurasian continent, however, the proliferation of ethnic conflict, epitomized at the extreme in ‘ethnic cleansing,’ has not been totally random. It has been most frequent and most violent between groups belonging to different civilizations. In Eurasia the great historic fault lines between civilizations are once more aflame. This is particularly true along the boundaries of the crescent-shaped Islamic bloc of nations from the bulge of Africa to central Asia. Violence also occurs between Muslims, on the one hand, and Orthodox Serbs in the Balkans, Jews in Israel, Hindus in India, Buddhists in Burma and Catholics in the Philippines (and Sudan). Islam has bloody borders.”

Previous presidents handled the clash their way, with less than stellar results, and Bush handled it his. You can beat him up for it if you must but he, for the first time, changed the dynamics of a situation that is not going to end anytime soon. That begs the question, will we carry on with the tactics that have prevented another attack here in the US and has transformed the mid-east region or will we go back to the policy of sending in the FBI instead of the Marines. I vote for the latter.

January 16, 2009

I would like to commend Captain Sullenberger for a phenomenal piece of piloting. Well done captain.

The following video is an example of a typical water landing except this gentleman is demonstrating what happens when you fail to retract the wheels on your amphibs. I really hate when that happens.

January 03, 2009

Happy Birthday Alaska!

It was going to take something special to bring me out of my blogging hibernation, this qualifies.

On this day in 1959 President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the final proclamation making Alaska our 49th state.

The Alaska Flag Song.
Eight stars of gold on a field of blue -Alaska's flag.
May it mean to you The blue of the sea, the evening sky, The mountain lakes, and the flow'rs nearby;
The gold of the early sourdough's dreams,The precious gold of the hills and streams;
The brilliant stars in the northern sky, The "Bear" - the "Dipper" - and, shining high,
The great North Star with its steady light, Over land and sea a beacon bright. Alaska's flag - to Alaskans dear, The simple flag of a last frontier.

"North to Alaska", at $7 million a bargain at twice the price.

Anchgorage Daily News: Someday soon, you might see an Alaska Airlines jet adorned with a most unusual sled team: a bounding dog with a curly tail roped to a bear, humpback whale and other Alaska icons.