Monday, November 30, 2009

Victor saves James Garfield; chagrined about paying for water

The Bloggess profanely elated; motivated.

The End Zone infatuated with semi-colons; disdainful of the verb "is".

Update: maybe it helps if you know The Bloggess' father is a taxidermist who works out of her childhood home. I suspect this is how she recognized the unusual size and overall stupendousness of James Garfield.

Russian Wedding Dress

Cannot not show this:

even as I dare not comment on it.

Weddings are sweet. They make me all verklempt.

The photo is from Fun site. I also cannot not show this groom's cake:

Have you got it yet? Luke Skywalker in tauntaun intestines.

Attractive turkey hunting bride. She is strong. Look at the size of the turkey, and look at her biceps.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Beauty, Fertility, Joie de Vivre

Southern brother traveled to Flagstaff to partake of this Thanksgiving meal with our cousins Lynn, Rachel, and Joe. Looks worth it.

You can see the family dynamic: beautiful women, everywhere. Let me accumulate descriptors: beautiful, fertile, full of life. Plus, um, fresh asparagus and olives. All the good things!

Rachel's grandmother - my Aunt Jane, and Rachel. When the 2009 Fort Worth summer heated up, I used this photo on my desktop, to remind that the summer heat would eventually subside!

How much CO2 enters the Earth's atmosphere each year?

Remember, first, that C02 is what "global fraudists" are concerned with. Remember, second, that CO2 comprises only about 3% of the Earth's atmosphere.

Donald Sensing: (a global warming advocacy site) says,
Consumption of vegetation by animals and microbes accounts for about 220 gigatonnes of CO2 per year. Respiration by vegetation emits around 220 Gt. The ocean releases about 330 Gt. In contrast, human emissions are only around 26.4 Gt per year.
Land plants absorb about 440 Gt of CO2 per year and the ocean absorbs about 330 Gt. This keeps atmospheric CO2 levels in rough balance.
And this tidbit:
“CO2 in the atmosphere is rising by only 15 gigatonnes per year.”
So there is a total of 796 gigatons of CO2 entering the atmosphere annually, of which 3.27% originates from human beings. And 43% of that is absorbed. Now you can see how science proves that global warming results solely from human CO2 emissions. It’s got nothing to do with the sun, water vapor, etc.

The final thing to recall is that, if every measure advocated in Kyoto was enacted, man would affect about 3% of the man made CO2 in the atmosphere. So, CO2 makes up about 3% of the atmosphere(.03); man accounts for about 3% of all CO2 in the atmosphere(.0009), and man can affect about 3% of what man puts into the atmosphere, or about .000027 of the atmosphere, which is about 27 millionths of the atmosphere. In order to affect these 27 millionths of the Earth's atmosphere, man - and especially the United States of America, would spend massive $Billions (hundreds of billions? trillions?) of our wealth and resources, thus diverting that wealth from more productive economic uses, thus creating much human misery and human suffering which would not otherwise be created.

"Global Frauding" is not about saving the planet. It is about one world government seizing power over the peoples of the world.

Via Rand Samberg via Donald Sensing, James Lewis:
The most important take home lesson is that global frauding was the clear and conscious work of a political machine aiming to steal your money, your liberties, and your country. It was a massive, worldwide attempt at a coup d’etat, and the victims were going to include all the free and prosperous peoples of the world. Hitler had his Reichstag fire. Today’s transnational left had its global warming fraud. The political goal was exactly the same: maximum power through maximum fear.

A key thing to remember about climate science: the peer review process was corrupted. This is part of what puts the "gate" in "Climategate". The scientists in the CRU emails were dominating and corrupting the peer review process: were using themselves and their cronies to peer review each other's work; were using themselves and their cronies - along with intimidation and lying and influence and political blackmail - to keep skeptic's work out of scientific journals, i.e. to prevent skeptics work from being peer reviewed and presented to the world.

Some of the most infuriating apologia for the CRU emails have been statements similar to this statement which I am about to make up:
Peer review! Trust the science! The work was peer reviewed! Are you going to trust some wacko skeptics who were never peer reviewed and published?! Trust the peer reviewed science!
Reading such tripe, I feel the urge to cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war upon the authors. Never forget: the peer review process was politicized and corrupted by a type of global warming mafia acting inside the scientific community. Imagine Tony Soprano saying: You're not getting peer reviewed. End of story. That's effectively what was happening. Imagine Al Capone: Liquor is my territory. I'll not allow you to horn in on my territory. Substitute climate science for liquor, and that's effectively what was happening.

Also via Sensing, David Warren:
For, as we glean from the hacked documents, supporters of the hypothesis have been able to reverse the onus of proof. In the last resort, their argument comes down to: We say the planet is warming. And anyone who says the contrary must "prove the negative" beyond the faintest shadow of a doubt. And we will be their judges.

Nigel Lawson (a.k.a. Baron Lawson of Blaby), the former British chancellor of the exchequer, who is among prominent persons demanding a full and open public inquiry, summarized the content of the e-mails in this way:
"Astonishingly, what appears, at least at first blush, to have emerged is that (a) the scientists have been manipulating the raw temperature figures to show a relentlessly rising global warming trend; (b) they have consistently refused outsiders access to the raw data; (c) the scientists have been trying to avoid freedom of information requests; and (d) they have been discussing ways to prevent papers by dissenting scientists being published in learned journals. ...

"There may be a perfectly innocent explanation,"
he continues with that impartial aplomb for which we have always adored British lords, but then he reminds just how much government spending and bureaucracy, in Britain and all over the world, has been mounted entirely upon this dubious research; and thus how far-reaching the implications if the obvious turns out to be true.

For the correspondence that has been hacked is not mere backroom gossip. It includes incriminating exchanges between some of the biggest names in the "global warming" business.

A fun skeptic: Lord Monkton

The good news: enough persons did rise up and spoil the Copenhagen plans. Copenhagen authorities have announced that no treaty will be signed in Copenhagen. They couldn't pull all the details and all the sympathizers together to get it done. Kimberly Strassel, in WSJ Opinion Journal:
Internationally, world leaders finally acknowledged that the recession has sapped them of their political power to impose devastating new carbon-restrictions. China and India are clear they won't join the West in an economic suicide pact. Next month's summit in Copenhagen is a bust. Instead of producing legally binding agreements, it will be dogged by queries about the legitimacy of the scientists who wrote the reports that form its basis.

The next opportunity to get international agreement is in Mexico City, 2010—a U.S. election year. Democrats were already publicly acknowledging there will be no domestic climate legislation in 2009 and privately acknowledging their great unease at passing a huge energy tax on Americans headed for a midterm vote.

Add to that the CRU scandal, which pivots the focus to potential fraud.

Also, I'm pretty sure Lord Monkton, in his presentation, forgot (or never knew) that the U.S. Senate has to approve treaties before the United States becomes a party to them.

Still, there is fun stuff in Lord Monkton's lecture. I like words, and the most fun moment for me is sort of nonsensical, but I like it: Lord Monkton, almost as an afterthought, tosses out "apotheosis" in a sentence. Ahhh. Sublime.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Preparing to celebrate the holidays with family, I am struck by the beauty to be found.

My cousin, Jade - another grandchild of the prolific Emjay.

My family, on both sides, is STOCKED with beautiful women. And those women produce sons and daughters. My family is gleefully countering the Muslim population explosion.

Jade's son, Rylan, ready for trick or treating:

I put up photos of cousin Chelsea and her son, Hunter, a while back. But, look at this new photo:

Apple pie. Except, Hunter is more like frogs and snails and puppy-dogs' tails. As he reaches adulthood, I suspect Hunter will need an outlet for the natural heroism, and for the love of action, which oozes from his every pore. Might he have a future in the military? In a fire department? Whatever his future, Hunter will never be a Beta male. He is constitutionally incapable.

Below, my cousins: sisters Sydney and Annika, and their and my brand new cousin, Piper.

Sydney looks like a resident of Whoville. At age 22 or so, Sydney and Annika will slay men where they stand, via nothing more than a glance and a smile. And, if headbands are in style in 2031, Piper will slay, also.

Cousin Victoria and Marsha Brady.

Toria is another grandchild of the prolific Emjay. I'll be at Toria's house tomorrow, for Thanksgiving.

The beauty in my families keeps coming, as in fields which steadily sprout wildflowers.


One more vignette:

Cousin Tate, wearing his Ole Miss jersey, made official pilgrimage to Oxford for Ole Miss vs. LSU. After, he imitated Ole Miss fans:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Objective Reporting vs Neutral Reporting

Evan Sayet:
What’s the difference between objective reporting and neutral reporting?

Consider a journalist covering a football game and the Jets have just defeated the hapless Patriots 57-3. (Hey, this is MY post, I can make up the score.) An objective journalist would write a report about how the Jets are a better team than are the Patriots. The story would feature key plays and decisions that highlighted New York’s superiority to the New England franchise on that day.

But what if all sports reporters had it drummed into their heads that they were not allowed to write a piece that in any way implied that one team was better than any other? Given the objective fact — the final score — not only would the reporter’s story not reflect the Jets’ superiority, but they would have to in some way explain how it is that two equally good teams saw such disparate results. The only way for this reporter to be neutral and deal with the objective facts would be to invent a false narrative whereby the evidence does not prove the obvious. If the Jets aren’t a better team, then they must have stolen the Patriots’ playbook. If the Patriots aren’t an inferior team, then the officials must have been bought off.

Consider the coverage of Nidal Hasan’s massacre of 14 innocent people at Ft. Hood. The objective reporter writes about the clear and obvious link between the murderer and his Muslim faith. But the neutral reporter — the one who has been taught that he cannot imply in any way that one culture or one religion is better or worse than any other — will not only not write the objective truth, but he will seek to invent a narrative that proves the murderer has been victimized.

Just as the sports reporter could not write that the Jets are a better team and therefore had to turn the good into the bad (the cheater), the neutral news reporter had no choice (i.e. would not be a “good reporter”) unless he ignored the truth, which, in turn, left him no choice but invent a storyline where the mass murderer was the victim and his victims the bad guys.

“Neutrality” is just another form of the indiscriminateness that I write about and another example of how indiscriminateness of thought does not lead to indiscriminatess of policy but rather invariably and inevitably sees the Modern Liberal side with evil over good, wrong over right, and failure over success.

More Evan Sayet in The End Zone.

Texas Rangers Fans: Don't Worry, Be Happy

Neftali Feliz - Be Happy from Drew Sheppard on Vimeo.

Where the Rangers are now is analogous to the 1991 Dallas Cowboys team which was a surprise qualifier for the playoffs before losing to Detroit when Erik Kramer kept throwing tall fade routes over the Cowboys short CBs. The following year, 1992, the Cowboys won the first of three Super Bowls in the 1990s.

Rangers fans, and seemingly the Rangers organization also, are hot for trading prospects away in a bid to improve the team's chances in 2010.

I ask: should the 1991 Dallas Cowboys have packaged some young players, say: FB Darryl Johnston, OG Nate Newton, DE Tony Tolbert, and throw in LB Godfrey Myles, for a couple of veterans whom the team could count on to help them win immediately? Would the veteran additions have helped the Cowboys win a Super Bowl faster than their actual Super Bowl victory in 1992? Hayull no. When considering trades, a franchise must be careful about its underlying assumptions.

Rangers fans and the Rangers organization are exhibiting a lack of imagination, a lack of shrewdness, a lack of courage. Most baseball franchises experience - every couple of decades - a large accumulation of minor league talent, only to watch that talent turn out to be nice talent which is not World Championship type talent. Most baseball franchises, the vast majority of the time, are better off trading that young talent for specific pieces which will help the major league team succeed.

Conversely, I assert the Rangers accumulation of talent is that rare thing: a true accumulation of World Championship talent which will, if left to marinate and mature in it's own time, produce multiple World Championships. Rangers fans and the Rangers organization are experiencing a dearth of imagination, of shrewdness, of courage. It almost never happens that one franchise has the ingredients needed for a decade of World Championship domination. However: why can't it happen? Why isn't it happening now(?), before our eyes(?), at least until Jon Daniels and Nolan Ryan despoil it by trading away irreplaceable talent?

In the 17th century, the English presumed that all swans were white. Except, it was eventually discovered: Australia has some black swans.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb has coined the term Black Swan Event
to explain the existence and occurrence of high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations.
Taleb regards almost all major scientific discoveries, historical events, and artistic accomplishments as "black swans"—undirected and unpredicted. He gives the rise of the Internet, the personal computer, World War I, and the September 11, 2001 attacks as examples of Black Swan Events.
Writing in the New York Times, Taleb asserted,
"What we call here a Black Swan (and capitalize it) is an event with the following three attributes. First, it is an outlier, as it lies outside the realm of regular expectations, because nothing in the past can convincingly point to its possibility. Second, it carries an extreme impact. Third, in spite of its outlier status, human nature makes us concoct explanations for its occurrence after the fact, making it explainable and predictable. I stop and summarize the triplet: rarity, extreme impact, and retrospective (though not prospective) predictability. A small number of Black Swans explain almost everything in our world, from the success of ideas and religions, to the dynamics of historical events, to elements of our own personal lives."

Taleb is arguing that risk assessment must include unknown unknowns. The Rangers franchise, even before assessing unknown unknowns, is not giving proper weight to a known unknown, i.e. to the chance that the young talent truly is World Championship Caliber. It's not that Rangers fans and organization cannot see the talent. It is, rather, that fans and organization are so blinded by what usually happens to other franchises, are so cowed by past Rangers failures, that fans and organization cannot get their heads around the notably strong chance that a World Championship Team is marinating and maturing in the Rangers minor league system.

Wilmer Font.

Just because such accumulation of talent does not come together often ..... does not mean such accumulation of talent is not coming together right now, and right before our eyes. Most fans lack the imagination, shrewdness, and courage to see the higher-than-normal odds that this is happening now. Does the organization also lack the imagination, shrewdness, and courage to see it?

Just because, over the previous century, "ya gotta trade those guys" has always been good advice ..... does not mean "ya gotta trade those guys" is good advice in the present circumstance.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Watching Vince Young on MNF

The problem with man to man defense = the QB is wide open if he scrambles. The defensive LB's and secondary might be spread out anywhere.

The problem Titan's opponents face: its very difficult for a def. line to keep Vince Young trapped in the pocket. Further, spying Vince Young seems useless: how does a spy defender, alone in a one on one situation in the open field, tackle Vince Young? That tackle, much of the time, is not going to happen.

The problem with playing zone defense is that the Titan passing game, as it was when Steve McNair was at the helm, amounts to a plethora of ultra safe 7 yard passes. There's no way a zone stops those passes. Therefore, the Titans, behind a power running game and their beloved 7 yard safe passes, march down the field against a zone, eating massive clock all the way.

So: you're damned if you zone and damned if you play man to man. If you play man to man, you may as well concede every 3rd and 3 to the Titans, b/c Vince Young is about to scramble out of the pocket and pick up the easiest 5 yards ever.

You're equally damned if you play zone. The Titans spend all season throwing their dumpy passes. They are better at it than you are at stopping it.

Steve McNair, also, was a formidable scrambler. When McNair was the Titan's QB, McNair put the defense into the same quandary as Vince Young puts them in now. Jeff Fisher knows how to create this unsolvable trap for the defense.

The Titan's started the season 0-6, and now have won 4 straight games in which Young has started. The TV guy just said Vince Young has won 8 straight starts as an NFL QB.

Vince Young is like an opera. He is incredibly immature - both emotionally and intellectually. He is a lost boy who never had a father. I don't know how much he will mature, ever, at any stage of his entire life. So, you have the size and speed; the mediocre pop gun arm which is nevertheless accurate; and the potential that Vince Young will melt down into little girl tears if the fans boo him. Opera. Watching Vince and the Titans is entertainment.

And Titans RB Chris Johnson, formerly of the East Carolina Pirates, is a playah. A PLAYAH. I'm sayin: Chris Johnson can PLAY. He knows how to handle his body. He has vision. He does not dance around east-west, but burns the turf going north-south. He is durable. He's the kind of guy a lineman wants to block for.

Disturbing news about Lisa's death

Based on interpretation of toxicology results which have now come in: Lisa died due to an overdose of pain medication which was administered in the hospital.

Worse, Bruce had patiently (for once) yet definitively explained to the doctor about Lisa's historically weak tolerance for medication. Bruce informed the hospital doctor of past medication used, and of dosages. The doctor wanted to try his own favored pain medication, in strong dosage, in attempt to increase Lisa's blood pressure. Bruce explained that her routine blood pressure was consistently low. Bruce and Baron urged the doctor to use tried and true medication and dosages. Courtney, also, was present during the conversation.

I knew this news might be coming. Still, the news is difficult to process. Bruce, Courtney, and Baron worked their derrieres off - night and day - keeping Lisa alive for 7+ years.

Walking an old dog

I walk Hoss dang near every day, but only walk him in the neighborhood about 1-2 times per week. The neighbor has a lot which is the width of three normal size lots. His yard is filled with 12' tall and 15' foot wide giant bushes. He lives well to the back of his lot, behind an obscuring fence, and never goes into the part of his yard which abuts the street. Before walking in the neighborhood, Hoss and I stop off in the neighbor's field/forest-of-bushes/yard, so Hoss can poop. The neighbor's field/yard is designed for poop. Fertilizer. Everyone wins.

Yesterday, I took Hoss to church, then went straight from the church parking lot to the park, changed clothes, and walked a good distance.

In evening, it felt like we ought walk again, so we went out. Hoss did not poop in the neighbor's field/yard. He had already pooped twice in the park, so, okay: let's move forward. For 20' ... whereupon he pooped in the other neighbors actual yard - which gets mowed and edged and stuff. @#$%^&;*! I grumble my way back to the house, grab some plastic grocery bags to use as poop scooping gloves, head back to the second neighbor's yard, and can't find the poop. This neighbor had poop colored camouflage leaves in his yard. I walked a grid in the poop affected area. I could smell the poop, but could not find it. Crazy.

The neighbor came out. "Is everything okay, sir?" "Why, yes. I'm just walking a grid in your yard and searching for poop." Turns out he works at the Fort Worth Zoo, and is poop friendly. He went and got his official poop scooping utensil and handled receptor. We both walked a small grid in the poop affected area. Nothing. The poop was clearly hiding under a camo leaf, and we could not find it.

And that's my story. I didn't get shot or arrested. Sometimes, not a lot happens in my life.

Hoss is a pleasure to walk. He stays close most of the time, and ranges some of the time. He will return on command, and can be directed from here to there very effectively. I've taught him to stay close when I see a car coming, and to walk exactly beside me on command. If there is serious traffic, he is happy to go on the leash, as he knows he will soon enough come off the leash. I have learned much from watching "Dog Whisperer", on Natl Geographic Channel, and apply those lessons.

I've taken him to a dog park about 5-6 times, and he is now very polite around other dogs. I don't worry about him at all. When walking, he is consistently off the leash, yet doesn't go running up on other dogs which come our way. Sometimes he ignores them; sometimes he approaches them slowly, politely, with tail wagging slowly in greeting. I usually send a polite advance greeting to the other dog owner, to make certain they are comfortable if Hoss approaches.

Upscale dog owners usually are walking polite dogs. Lower income dog owners often are walking semi-dangerous dogs. Don't excoriate me: it's just a fact, I can't help it. The lower income owners are often young adult men who are proud to own tough dogs. Their dogs are very athletic, and need a lot of space to roam, and I suspect these very athletic dogs usually do not have enough space to exercise in their home yards. These young adult men frequently have not socialized their dogs to be polite to other dogs, and frequently appear to be barely in control of their dogs, even though their dogs are on leashes. If I see such a man and dog coming at us, Hoss and I leash up well in advance, and go around when possible - keeping as much distance away as possible.

I never realized what an excellent system of parks and walking trails exists in Fort Worth. This town continues to amaze. The Trinity River has many fingers and tributaries winding through town, and every yard of shore has a walking path close by. Parks? They are everywhere. The only problem is that many of the parks have ducks, and Hoss is undisciplined around things he can kill. We have to go on the leash around any ducks. Yesterday, I stopped Hoss milliseconds before he went into a pond in pursuit of a fish. He had his front paws in the pond, and was prepping for an attacking leap into the water.

Poor Hoss almost never catches any varmint. His tag jingles when he trots, and the varmints hear him at distance, and scamper to safety. He's mostly given up trying to sniff things to kill. It's the futility of always announcing himself via the jingling tag which has messed up his hunting life. He did find a raccoon, and bawled at it like a hound dog - which was funny. Thankfully, he was wise enough to not attack the raccoon. Any raccoon would win against any dog.

My knee is tender - I suspect from a loose piece of meniscus, and I walk in grass whenever possible. Hoss, meanwhile, if we go good distance and he gets tired, gives up the roaming and sniffing in favor of any smooth path. Which sets up this scene: human walking through uneven grassy area; dog walking 20' away on smooth bike path. To me: a funny tableau.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Palin 2012: SNL recuts a movie trailer

Update: YouTube took down the video due to copyright. I can't find the video on NBC's site - which is weird, b/c they have other video's from last night's episode of SNL.

Here's a link to a currently active YouTube video showing the Palin spoof:

John at Powerlineblog is analyzing the climate alarmists' emails

and is focusing on a few incriminating series of emails. His first post, Global Warming Bombshell, outlines the circumstance:
Someone hacked into a computer at the University of East Anglia's Hadley Climatic Research Centre, one of the main centers of anthropogenic global warming research. The hacker downloaded 62 megabytes of data from the server, consisting of around 1,000 emails and a variety of other documents. He uploaded them to an FTP server, where they were available to the public, apparently, for only a few hours.
I downloaded all of the material earlier today and have begun to review it. The emails are stunning. They are authored by many of the leading figures in the global warming movement: Michael Mann, James Hansen, Phil Jones, Keith Briffa, Stephen Schneider, and others. They are remarkably candid; these individuals talk to each other with the knowledge that they are among friends.

The emails I've reviewed so far do not suggest that these scientists are perpetrating a knowing and deliberate hoax. On the contrary, they are true believers. [...] But the emails are disturbing nonetheless. What they reveal, more than anything, is a bunker mentality.
They also suggest that pro-global warming scientists fudge data to get the results they are looking for.
No wonder pro-global warming scientists are dogmatically committed to their theory, no matter what the data say: their livelihoods, as well as their professional reputations, depend on it. As a result, they conduct themselves like a secret cabal. Outsiders--that is to say, independent thinkers--are viewed with suspicion.

The conclusion of his post, The Alarmists Do "Science", a Case Study:
Tree ring studies are vitally important to the conclusions reached by the U.N.'s IPCC report, which is the main foundation for the claim that anthropogenic global warming has been "proved." That being the case, one would think that Briffa, one of the two or three primary authors of the tree ring studies, would have a ready response to these very basic questions. But no: he did not reply to Dr. Keiller's email.
As far as I can tell from the email archive, Briffa never did respond to the plant scientist. Jones's email warning Briffa to be "very wary about responding to this person now having seen what McIntyre has put up" was written just three weeks ago. It, along with the rest of the email archive, makes an utter mockery of the alarmists' claim that the science of global warming is settled in their favor.

On the contrary, the conclusion an observer is likely to draw from the CRU archive is that the climate alarmists are making up the science as they go along and are fitting facts to reach a predetermined conclusion rather than objectively seeking after truth. What they are doing is politics, not science. When I was in law school, this story was told about accountants: A CEO is going to hire a new accountant and summons a series of candidates. He asks each applicant, "What is two plus two?" The first two candidates answer, "Four." They don't get the job. The third responds, "What do you want it to be?" He gets hired. The climate alarmists' attitude toward data appears to me much the same as that fictional accountant's attitude toward arithmetic.

The conclusion of his post, When In Doubt, Delete:
These emails appear to show that, when faced with a legitimate request under Britain's Freedom of Information Act, these global warming alarmists preferred to delete their emails with one another about the crucially important IPCC report--the main basis for the purported "consensus" in favor of anthropogenic global warming--rather than allow them to come to light. This is one of many instances in the East Anglia documents where the global warming alarmists act like a gang of co-conspirators rather than respectable scientists.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Andrew Klavan cracks me

Because I recognize myself, especially a few years ago, and my then knee-jerk and lightly reasoned desire to be one of the cool and smart and virtuous people. Klavan embodies the process many of us went through as we shifted - slowly, against our will, as if in a fog - from our school-encouraged, culturally-encouraged, media-encouraged assumptions ..... to our current, defiant conservatism.

Addendum: Andrew Klavan may as well be commenting on an observation by the Assistant Village Idiot:
[T]he abandoning of liberalism is so often a personal issue, involving self-honesty and the simpler virtues, rather than a mere change of opinion and perspective. If self-honesty became the fashion in America, liberalism would cease to be a force.

To be fair, we’d lose a lot of conservatives and libertarians as well. But self-deception are incidental to those approaches, not central.
As a backup to the embed: video link


A ripple, here and there:
Why are some conservatives so hateful to Lindsey Graham? Are such conservatives militant and exclusionary? Rejecting a big tent and demanding purity?
The accusation amounts to a false construct. No one is saying Lindsey Graham ought be burned as a witch. However, do we not get to both agree and disagree with a Republican Senator? Are we to abandon reason and fall into line for a political party or for an individual senator?

Lindsey Graham is sometimes reasoned and sometimes unreasoned. Bringing things back around to Andrew Klavan: we Lindsey Graham critics recognize, in Senator Graham, the same knee-jerk and lightly reasoned desire to be one of the cool and smart people which once characterized us. And we get to speak up, in principled fashion, when light reasoning leads Senator Graham in a misguided policy direction.

At bottom, probably, the issue is about whether a more conservative Republican could be elected in South Carolina. Moderate Republicans say no. Moderate Republicans say:
We must attract the electoral center via embracing some of the policies of the left. The party needs Senator Graham, and the party needs conservatives not to knock him and weaken him.
Conservative Republicans say:
We do not attract voters via embracing fantasy. We attract voters via speaking truth.
Moderate Republicans reply:
Be realistic: the electoral center is not listening closely enough to be swayed by truth. We must get Republicans elected for the good of the nation.
Conservative Republicans reply:
Raise the quality of the conversation. Persuade. We are not electing clerks to take tallies of voter's misguided assumptions and to then fall into line with those assumptions. Lead.
Moderate Republicans:
Sen. Graham is a powerful leader on many important issues. He is an influential voice. His powerful leadership on those issues outweighs his occasional misguided forays.
And the intraparty debate carries on. Maybe the tension, back and forth, is a good thing: builds muscle.

Elvis Andrus Rookie Season in Pictures


Friday, November 20, 2009

Climate change is a circumstance; is not known to be a problem

neoneocon, in looking at an assertion that hacked emails show climate change activists have been, for years, lying about climate change (see Richard Fernandez, A.J. Strata, Shrinkwrapped) writes what I suspect is a reflexive throw away line: "both sides of the AGW controversy are very politicized".

I have difficulty characterizing the issue succinctly.

Climate change cannot accurately be characterized as a “problem”. Climate change is a “circumstance”. No one knows if the circumstance represents a problem.

AGW exists as a teensy proportion* of the overall circumstance of climate change.

Lets say someone does, someday, discover that climate change is a problem. Efforts by man could - at humongous expense - make a teensy reduction in the teensy proportion of AGW which does exist as a part of overall climate change. Would the reduction be significant? No one knows. My gut says no. But no one knows.

Until someone knows whether or not climate change is a “problem”; until someone knows whether or not a teensy reduction in an already teensy AGW portion of climate change would be significant: we are fools to expend resources on a chimera.

Now, how to succinctly communicate the above? If I say: "AGW is manure!", then I am, technically, mischaracterizing things. AGW does exist as a teensy proportion of the circumstance we call “climate change.” If I say “Climate change is natural; is a circumstance but not necessarily a problem; and man’s effect on it is minuscule and probably insignificant,”(especially when considered next to the huge effect sunspots have on the Earth's atmosphere; and when considered next to the huge effect vegetation and living organisms have on the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere) would anyone read through to the end of the sentence? I suspect few would.

Back to neo: “both sides of the AGW controversy are very politicized”

Is there an organized anti AGW movement? I’m aware of the courageous long term actions and statements of Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma. However, he seems more interested in truth, and he doesn’t seem to have attracted an organized group of confederates.

Can a smattering of individuals - regarding this issue - be “highly politicized”? They could be, but I don’t see that they currently are.

Instead, I see a scattered group of skeptics who - like me - have a difficult time succinctly communicating the issue. We resort to a technically untrue description: “AGW is manure!”, which technically untrue description might be read as if we are acting out of politicized motive. Yet, I assert, we are, largely, acting of out desire to discover truth; and we are stymied by our inability to succinctly communicate about the issue.


Also, as an aside: I am sensitive to any assertion that "both sides" do it. The left claims this all the time, and very often in error. Well intentioned persons on the right knee jerk into agreement with the left's often false meme.


*What does "teensy" mean?

Climate change advocates focus on carbon dioxide. Approx 3% of Earth's atmosphere is carbon dioxide. Of all carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere, human technological activity accounts for maybe 3%, i.e. .0009 of everything in the Earth's atmosphere. However, man is not going to eliminate all technological activity. What part, of the .0009 that man accounts for, could man realistically affect? If every nation adopted every standard recommended in the Kyoto Protocol, man would reduce his impact on the atmosphere by approx. 3%. Therefore, if the entire Earth does everything Kyoto proposes, then .000027 of the Earth's atmosphere would be relieved of the existing man produced carbon dioxide which resides there. Stated another way: 27 millionths of the Earth's atmosphere would be relieved of the carbon dioxide which now resides there. The economic cost, in terms of effort and assets expended, would be incalculable; as would be the additional human suffering and misery which would result from directing wealth into an effort to clean up 27 millionths of the Earth's atmosphere.

Friday Hot: Curvaceous Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett is a wow, and so is this advertisement. Stealing this entire post/set of observations from the influential fashion commentator, Webutante:

Instead, I want to focus on perfume and how good the curvaceous Scarlett J. looks in the Dolce & Gabbana ad above. Love her hair, dress, pose. There's neither too little nor too much of her showing. She's carrying just the right amount of weight and hasn't been photo shopped out of existence. And that unfussy, little black dress will take her anywhere. She's alluring, yet restrained in a lady-like way and showing us how to be ready for a sensual night on the town or an intimate one at home. Add a little (and I do mean little) fragrance and she's rules the night and any man fortunate enough to be in her company. Nice. I also love it that the ad is in black-and-white. Very classic and classy.

In that blogpost, I wrote:

Look at how pretty Scarlett Johansson is! She has classic facial structure, and it will wear well over time. In this photo, she looks like an illustration on a fancy and luxurious box of ladies' bath powder, circa about 1935. It feels as though we could open the top of this picture and pull out an extravagant, powder-dusted puff.

Speaking strictly about the physical: if you are a man in Scarlett's presence, at some point you have to say: Enough. What more does man desire in woman? Nothing more. If you want more physical beauty than Scarlett, you just can't be satisfied.

In the Dolce & Gabbana ad, Webutante and a commenter like it that Scarlett is carrying a bit of natural weight. I like it, too. A woman is a WOMAN - not a stick. That appears, to me, the perfect and natural weight for Scarlett. Below that weight, every pound Scarlett loses diminishes her sensuality; diminishes her allure.

There are women who are as physically beautiful as Scarlett. Let's look for some.

Aaaand ... it's difficult to divorce the physical beauty of a woman from what we sense about her inner beauty: difficult to focus strictly on the physical.

I love this photo of Mariel Zagunis in the moment of victory. I think she is so beautiful and so enticing at this moment. However, my feelings have a lot to do with what I sense about her as a person; have a lot to do with my personal preference for athletic women.

Kate Winslett does it for me. Again, however, that has much to do with what I sense about her: intelligence, joie de vivre, natural and easy sensuality.

End Zone: Oscars "Do's" of Kate Winslett

Here's a strictly physical appraisal: sporting a scientifically perfect ratio of hip size to waist size (seriously: some scientists did research on what men find attractive, then measured photos of a bunch of women, and named Jessica Alba as having the most perfect ratio of hip size to waist size), presenting: Jessica Alba (and her husband, Cash).

Jessica Alba is a good place to stop, especially b/c we can compare this Campari ad with Scarlett's Dolce & Gabbana ad.

Campari is especially popular in Italy. It is made from a secret recipe of bitters, aromatic plants, and fruit. Many flavors marinate together, over time, then become Campari. It is an apertif, i.e. is designed to stimulate appetite before dinner. It's most famously drunk in a "Negroni" cocktail, which is a mix of gin, Cinzano Red Vermouth, and Campari. Italians drink Campari very cold, in a frozen glass, with an orange slice, sometimes topped with a splash of soda.

Which is all to say: Campari's traditional clientele is older, and Campari is marketing like crazy to attract a younger clientele. Which is where Jessica Alba comes in. Except: both her make-up and swimsuit are all wrong - are more appropriate on an older woman. Jessica looks like a little girl playing dress up with her mother's things. The make-up and swimsuit are perfect for a 35 year old to 45 year old to any additional age woman, yet look silly on Jessica Alba. When Jessica Alba is your material, it's difficult to mess up. Yet Campari did.

What of the European audience? Do you think Jessica Alba looks more natural to a European audience? To a Japanese audience? Maybe those are the markets.

Here's the associated Campari television ad. It's blatant, cheesy, yet better. Jessica looks like a young woman, as opposed to a girl playing dress up. BTW, this TV ad shows Jessica Alba AFTER she had delivered her first child. Good genes are a miraculous thing.

Addendum: I've decided this is a good television commercial, based on that I have now watched it 5 times.

Janine Turner could believably drink Campari, and could carry off the Campari magazine ad's make-up and swimsuit.

Janine Turner is like Scarlett's black dress: you can take Janine Turner anywhere - anywhere at all - and she will fit in. Rattlesnake Roundup? Monster Truck Rally? High Tea in Hampshire? Yacht beside the Riviera? Bible study in Beeville? Janine fits in.

Hedy Lemarr, via using this very photo, could sell Campari today, and could sell it to a younger clientele. Look how smart she is! It helps if you know she was highly intelligent.* In this photo, she looks beautiful, athletic, intelligent - completely what I want in my Campari spokesperson!

*I wrote about Hedy two years ago. Please visit this blogpost if you wish to learn more about her interesting life.

Hedy was complicated, but I am struck by her. She co-invented a system of switching frequencies which is still used by the U.S. military to control some missiles. It's principles are also used in wireless internet technology, and in many cellphones. Hedy and composer George Antheil got the idea while playing piano duets. Hedy was a classically trained pianist. She would follow Antheil on the piano as he - switching from key to key and rhythm to rhythm - attempted both to throw her off, and to create interesting interplay.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

It's been obvious, for a decade, that Eric Holder is not competent to be Attorney General of the U.S.

KSM in NYC is what happens after time spent viewing the law as a method of advancing a political agenda. Obama, Holder, and Holder’s minions have forgotten justice; have forgotten constitutional principles. Such basic and boring small matters (i.e. justice and constitutional principles) are beneath them. Obama and Holder and minions have, as a result, embarrassed themselves.

It was obvious, a decade ago, that Holder was not and is not competent for the AG position. Holder refused to appoint independent counsel to investigate the China-connected fundraising abuses by Vice President Gore (which occurred around the time President Clinton allowed LOREL Corp. to sell advanced, and previously top secret, missile technology to China). Holder was central to the politically driven pardons of 16 FALN Puerto Rican terrorists - pardons designed to get Hillary Clinton elected to the Senate in NY. Curt Levey:
"Mr. Holder chose to ignore opposition to the pardons from the FBI, two United States Attorneys, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the Fraternal Order of Police and victims of the FALN bombings."
Holder was central to the Marc Rich pardon - failing to pass along relevant information about a) Rich's misdeeds and b) opposition to Rich's pardon, followed by giving inaccurate testimony during the 2001 Congressional inquiry into the Rich pardon. One would think Holder's career in government would have ended there - at the inaccurate Congressional testimony. Dream on.

For a decade, it's been obvious Eric Holder is a functionary; a yes man; a political hack; a middle manager who needs supervision; a lightweight whose opinion ought never be given great weight; and A BAD LAWYER WHO NEITHER UNDERSTANDS NOR VALUES THE LAW.

Obama selected Holder b/c Obama is focused on the Justice Dept’s treatment of race, and b/c Obama could count on Holder to rectify perceived racial wrongs. A race conscious POTUS nominated a hack. A race conscious Congress confirmed a hack to be Attorney General of the United States. No one in a race conscious nation wants to say the truth: Holder is an obvious hack, and is the Attorney General of the United States partly b/c of skin tone which caused Congress to pass him through, and partly b/c Holder is sympathetic to Obama’s over-riding concerns about racial injustice emanating from the Dept. of Justice. Janice Rogers Brown would never be nominated to be Obama’s AG.

Holder as AG is an outrageous situation, and it’s further outrageous that most everyone is terrified to speak the truth about it. Unless our culture is willing to squarely face truth, and to speak truth, we will lose what meritocracy remains.

Ol Man Obama

Old Man River:

Paul Robeson , from the 1936 movie "Showboat"
Judy Garland existential pain version

Present day adaption:

There's a man called Barack Obama
That's the man half of America wants to be
What does he care if the world's got problems?
What does he care if the land ain't free?

Ol Obama, dat ol Obama
He ought know sumpin, but don't know nuthin,
He keeps fantasizin, just keeps fantasizin along.

He don't keep a promise, he don't make decisions,
An dem dat makes em, is soon bus comprissioned,
But ol' Obama, he jes keeps blame blamin' along.

You an me, we sweat an strain,
Bank accounts all achin an racked with pain,
Pay dat tax! Genuflect without fail!
Exert some free speech an you land in jail.

Ah gits weary, an sick of tryin
Ah'm thinkin John Galt without the damn speechifyin,
But ol Obama, jes keeps platitudin along.

from bgates:
Bow low, sweet Obama
Goin' apologizin' for his home
Bow low, sweet Obama
Goin' apologizin' for his home

I looked out at Riyadh and what did I see
Goin' apologizin' for his home
The American President down on one knee
Goin' apologizin' for his home


I turn on the news from Tokyo and what did I see
Goin' apologizin' for his home
Obama with less backbone than nigiri sushi
Goin' apologizin' for his home


The brightest day that I will know
Goin' apologizin' for his home
When Sarah Palin sends that douchebag back to Chicago
He'll be done apologizin' for his home

John of Powerlineblog:
One seriously hesitates to draw the conclusion that Barack Obama is an idiot, no matter how strongly the evidence may point in that direction. But what are we to make of a man who is ignorant of history; who is ignorant of economics; who despises his own country; and who appears to believe that awareness of his own wonderfulness is enough to guide him? Has such a fool ever played a leading role on the world stage? I think it is fair to say, no: not until now.

Also: Japan Expert to ABC: Yes, Obama’s bow made him look like an idiot


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

She begins: Brittney Griner debuts with Baylor Women

ESPN Highlight

Based on a moment in a highlight video, my gut says Brittney has leadership qualities which indicate underlying brains and heart. If so, the rest of the nation will soon enough be in trouble. Maybe not until next year, but soon, and for at least 3 long years of Baylor dominance.

KSM NYC trial = incentive to attack American civilians instead of American military

Barack is giving aid and comfort to America's enemies, and is increasing the odds of American deaths in terror attacks, in order to help himself politically via encouraging defense lawyers to put the Bush Administration on trial.

This is the opposite of protecting Americans. Barack is risking Americans.

Given that Barack approves of Military Commissions, given that Barack is having other detainees tried via Military Commission, there is no justification for KSM's NYC trial. None. There is no redeeming value. It is indefensible.

cartoon by Michael Ramirez of Investors Business Daily.

William McGurn quotes Andrew McCarthy:
Worst of all, [McCarthy] says, is turning the laws of war upside down: Why fight the Marines and risk getting killed yourself or locked up in Bagram forever when you can blow up American citizens on their own streets and gain the legal protections that give you a chance to go free? With this one step [i.e. KSM NYC trial], Mr. Holder is giving al Qaeda a ghastly incentive: to focus more of their attacks on American civilians on American home soil.

"It is foolish to think that al Qaeda does not train to our system and look for our vulnerabilities," says Mr. McCarthy. "Remember what Khalid Sheikh Mohammed told his captors when we got him, 'I'll see you in New York with my lawyer.' It seems he knows our weaknesses better than our government does."


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Palin and Repub Presidential Candidates

I commented at neoneocon.

Re Palin

First: being POTUS is not the be all end all (not that anyone said it was, but just as a reminder). It’s AMAZING the way Palin has affected the conversation with a Facebook account.

Second: though much anti Palin animus comes from feminists and leftists, much also comes from Washington insiders - including the condescending “Meet the Press” types of pretentious commentators.

Palin is the ultimate outsider. You’d have to relocate to the North Slope to get much more outside than Wasilla - and no families live on the North Slope. The insiders criticize her for not having the knowledge of an insider. This is silly. If she had the knowledge of an insider, she would BE an insider.

Palin’s opportunity is to demonstrate the truth: she is a learning organism. Althouse said Palin is “dumb” b/c Palin did not, last fall, recognize the treachery of the McCain staffers who would stab her in the back. Althouse fails to recognize that Palin is an outsider and a learning organism: she learns, she advances, she learns, she advances, etc. A President needs to know who he/she is (re principles and beliefs) and be a learning organism. Palin is this, and has opportunity to demonstrate it to the electorate.

I am not over concerned about Palin’s positive/negative rating. Many say she is defined in the public eye. However, I believe much of the public does not know her: she has opportunity to be redefined in their eyes.

re Repub Presidential candidates

I believe Repub candidates have charm and are simply too unknown. This will be rectified: the electorate will come to know them. Romney, Huckabee, Pawlenty: it’s true they don’t have military medals and war stories in their backgrounds. Still, they are clever conversationalists, would be engaging over beer, and know their way around a BBQ grill. These guys are not stiffs, and we ought be careful about blithely buying into the media preferred narrative that they are. Some of the bias in that narrative is coastal bias against the midwest. I don’t spend … really any time at all being concerned about coastal bias against the midwest. Still, it exists, and it exists in the “bland” narrative being sold about Romney, Huckabee, and Pawlenty. These guys all enjoy a good ribald story; and they all have more guts, and more understanding of life and of humanity, than either a WaPo reporter or a Meet the Press condescender - especially better than a David Brooks who: worshipfully allowed Barack to fondle his thigh, then worshipfully wrote about it.

re Jindal

You know who is a stiff? Bobby Jindal. And I’ll vote for him for President the instant he runs for the office. He is the most glorious stiff ever, and he is cleaning up Louisiana like it has NEVER been cleaned up before. Ever. Louisiana, quietly, has likely been the most corrupt state in the history of the U.S. Louisiana politics is a web of corruption, and has been for a century. The money amounts of an Illinois or a New York do not flow through Louisiana, yet what money does flow through there has always been heavily susceptible to being embezzled and to being directed to cronies. NO ONE has ever made progress in cleaning up Louisiana like Bobby Jindal is doing right now.

re Palin’s resignation as Governor:

It was outside the box strategic thinking. It was smart. It was ballsy. “L’audace, l’audace, toujours l’audace!”

Palin took care of Alaskans. She was hamstrung as governor, and therefore Alaska was hamstrung. For the remaining months of what would have been her legally hamstrung and lame-duck governorship, Alaska is better off without her in the office.

Palin took care of her family: cashing an opportunity to earn, for the first time ever, millions of dollars. It was an opportunity which might not have come around again.

Palin is more viable as a candidate: can speak out and take actions which she could not have taken as Governor.

Her resignation as Governor is a nice indication of her capability as a gutsy strategic thinker and actor.

John Podheretz, says the McCain Campaign Staff attacked Palin to salvage their individual personal futures (in politics and in media):
Perhaps the greatest mark of [the McCain Campaign's] dysfunction was the stream of unnamed McCain advisers who went out of their way to criticize Palin in remarks they were too cowardly to deliver for attribution. It was, to say the least, highly peculiar for them to have acted as they did. [...] They do so to hedge their own bets, to maintain relationships they want to last after the campaign is over. The best way to do that is to reflect the same cultural and theoretical priorities as the journalists to whom they speak, as a means of distancing themselves from the dysfunction and receiving kind post-mortem treatment.

The only “gratitude” Palin owed to the McCain campaign was to McCain. She owed no gratitude to campaign advisers and employees who threw everything but the kitchen sink at her — quite the opposite, in fact. By naming names and revealing the unprofessional behavior of McCain campaign staffers who were doing his election effort no favors by engaging in Palin-bashing, she has struck a blow for a greater degree of campaign civility in the future, in part by letting future potential employers in the political realm know about the poor behavior of people they might hire to help get them elected. The best way to neutralize a hostile leaker in the world of electoral politics is to let the world know that the leaker is a leaker.


Texas Rangers 2010: Managing outside the box; keeping long term priorities in mind

T.R. Sullivan:
The Rangers are likely to improve their team through trades rather than free agency this winter.
But the Rangers are limited financially and do not expect to be leading the charge toward the top free agents. Remember the Rangers were the only team last winter not to sign a free agent to a Major League contract.

The Rangers will talk trades with other clubs and have some pitching depth to offer, including right-hander Brandon McCarthy.

A good trade is always a good trade.

With that said: before the Rangers begin making offseason trades, here's how they could approach 2010 with the current personnel. It can be done, and done successfully.

Winning is a priority. Developing players is a bigger priority. All can be accomplished. A goal of winning in 2010 ought not jeopardize an upcoming decade of winning.

Offensive priority: pitch selection. If Rangers contend in 2010 at cost of failing to improve their offensive pitch selection, then 2010 is a failure.

Worst offenders in 2009: Hamilton, Davis, Saltalamacchia.
All have an option remaining. In April 2010, send them to OKC to work on pitch selection. Send Clint Hurdle to OKC once a week to monitor progress.

April 2010 Line-Up
(keeping pressure off of Cruz and Elvis in April and May - until they get their timing down and build confidence during 2010)

1. Borbon CF
2. German DH
3. Young 3B
4. Kinsler 2B
5. Murphy 1B
6. Cruz RF
7. Boggs LF
8. Pudge C
9. Elvis SS

Bench: Teagarden, Arias, Metcalf (1B and 3B)

Note 1: it's a tragedy that Vizquel will be gone. I love him as a technician, as a strategic player, and as a leader. The Rangers ought make him Player/Manager, effective immediately.

Note 2: leading off and playing CF is asking a lot of rookie Borbon. If Borbon stumbles, you ought have Hamilton arriving in May, or at any time, really. Gentry is an emergency (and hopefully emerging) option.

Note 3: Esteban German, while not a seasoned veteran of MLB, is a seasoned veteran of professional baseball, and is a professional and selective hitter. He's a tiny guy who is difficult to pitch to: he has no holes in his swing.

Rangers fans always demand a player with a track record of major league success. They do not recognize when a guy like German has spent years preparing himself, and is ready to succeed. German is an OBP guy who controls his strike zone: this means he ought not require an extensive adjustment period to the major leagues. I've confidence in German.

However, if German fails, there are lots of options to hit #2 in the line-up: Murphy, Elvis, Arias; or move Cruz to clean up, Kinsler to #3 and Young to #2.

Note 4: Question: why coddle Elvis and Cruz, yet allow top-of-the-line-up pressure on Borbon and German? Answer: you can depend on Borbon and German to rebound from failure. Both are tough scrappers.

Elvis is less likely to fail - is less likely to fail than Borbon or German. However, it's also true that Elvis has never failed. If Elvis does fail: how will he respond? Elvis is still a bit young and tender. Best to coddle him until he grows tougher skin. No sense taking a chance with a still young psyche.

2010 Pitching

Hunter, Holland, Harrison, and Feliz need their innings managed a bit, and - early in the 2010 season - need their psyches coddled a bit. They need to get into rhythm and gain confidence. They ought not be tossed to the wolves during the first month of the season.

I would put them into my beloved 4 man bullpen rotation of young pitchers who pitch 2+ innings every 4th-5th day - including closing games where possible.

April Starting Rotation:
C.J. Wilson

Beloved 4 Man Bullpen Rotation:

April Situational Bullpen
(Start the season w/12 fielders and 13 pitchers):
A.J. Murray or Eyre

OKC AAA Pitching:
Luis Mendoza

Andrew Laughter
Michael Ballard
Zach Phillips
Beau Jones

OKC AAA Defense:

.... LF Smoak ... CF Golson ... RF Hamilton

3B Davis .. SS Lemon ... 2B Osuna ... 1B Tracy

.................C/DH Max Ramirez ....... DH/C Saltalamacchia

Frisco AA Starting Pitching:
Martin Perez, aka Marpez
Kennil Gomez
Either: Hyatt, Murphy, Roark, or Tatusko

Injury recovery in Frisco: Hurley, Schlact (Benoit?)

Bakersfield High A Starting Pitching
Everybody. Massive Talent. Yowzah!


Possibly Brigham or Castillo.


GM Jon Daniels is apparently ready to trade pitching for hitting. At this exact moment: mistake. I would sit on the primary pitching talent this offseason.

First, the hitting improvement simply must come from within - including from hitters such as Young and Kinsler. One or two hitting acquisitions will not magically transform the current line-up of players who swing too wildly. The change must come from within - must be embraced by current players. Otherwise, you cannot win with these players, and you ought make wholesale changes: trade Hamilton, Davis, Saltalamacchia, to start with. Wipe out your line-up and start over.

Second, regarding the stock of available pitching talent:

If you can trade non-elite prospects* (players like Omar Poveda, Kennil Gomez, Tim Murphy) for Milton Bradley, fine.

However, this is the moment to sit on the primary pitching talent: to let the primary talent be culled via injury and failure; to let success arise via performance in the arena. This is the season to have numbers and depth, to let things play out, to let talent rise and become apparent. This is the season to hone your pitchers via competition with each other.

If Jon Daniels is truly ready to trade McCarthy and Nippert, that must mean:

1) Daniels is confident that some of Moscoso, Kiker, Beavan, or Poveda will be ready in July. If you trade McCarthy and Nippert, you could easily incur injuries and have one or more of the younger group on your staff in July.


2) Daniels wants to trade, and needs to clear salary in order to add salary via a trade. McCarthy is arbitration eligible, and will earn maybe $2-$3 Millionish. Nippert might be arb eligible, depending on how the league rules.

I would keep the powder dry and the talent stockpiled all the way through the spring. You can always trade McCarthy and Nippert in July. Every contending team is looking for pitching in July.

It is possible Daniels is priming the pump: is dropping McCarthy's name and Nippert's name, in November, as prelude to making them available in July. Putting their names out might help build their value later in the year. Teams will not be suddenly suspicious when the Rangers make them available in trade. Further, it helps Daniels gather intelligence: he can better determine what McCarthy and Nippert ought be worth in a future trade; he can get some ideas about which teams might be interested in trading for them.

*Rangers have some players who ought not be traded. These are players who have huge upside potential, and about whom the Rangers do not yet know how good they will eventually be. A franchise which thinks big will keep such players.

Don't trade the franchise's Magic Johnson/Derek Jeter spiritual leader:

Don't trade hitters who are touched by God:
Max Ramirez

You don't yet know how good these guys might be. Keep them.

Don't trade pitchers with massive upside:

In the right deal: trade the rest, b/c you know approximately what their upside will be. For instance: Feldman, Hunter, Harrison are very valuable. However, you know approximately what their upside will be, and therefore can dependably trade them for equal value. Same with Moscoso, Kiker, Beavan, Poveda, Kennil Gomez. These are good good players. However, you know approximately what their maximum upside is, and therefore can trade them for fair value.

Monday, November 16, 2009

John Yoo on trial of KSM: an intelligence bonanza for Al Qaeda

John Yoo was an official in the Justice Dept from 2001-2003. He made recommendations regarding what constituted torture vs. what constituted legal interrogation. For this, he is, still, reviled by lefties who want him prosecuted for committing war crimes. Yoo:
"For a preview of the KSM trial, look at what happened in the case of Zacarias Moussaoui, the so-called 20th hijacker who was arrested in the U.S. just before 9/11. His trial never made it to a jury. Moussaoui's lawyers tied the court up in knots.

All they had to do was demand that the government hand over all its intelligence on him. The case became a four-year circus, giving Moussaoui a platform to air his anti-American tirades. The only reason the trial ended was because, at the last minute, Moussaoui decided to plead guilty. That plea relieved the government of the choice between allowing a fishing expedition into its intelligence files or dismissing the charges."


"The Supreme Court has upheld the use of [military] commissions for war crimes. The procedures for these commissions received the approval of Congress in 2006 and 2009."


Patterico: KSM's trial is a show trial. Under no circumstances does KSM ever go free. That is not justice.
Glenn Greenwald is exactly right about this. He notes that Obama and Holder are determining what sort of process detainees get, not based on what is legally required, but rather based on whether the government can win:
A system of justice which accords you varying levels of due process based on the certainty that you’ll get just enough to be convicted isn’t a justice system at all. It’s a rigged game of show trials.

If the government is choosing the forum and mode of your trial based on where it thinks it can win, it is rigging the outcome. If the government is unwilling to accept a bad outcome to your trial, your trial is a show trial.

Under these criteria, Obama’s decision to try KSM in federal court is a clear example of a show trial.


In his press conference, Eric Holder went off script and inadvertently confirmed this, when asked how he could assure family members of 9/11 victims that the plotters would not be released on a technicality:
I am quite confident that we’re going to be successful in the prosecution efforts.

If I was concerned about the forum not leading to a positive result or if I had a concern — a different concern, you know, we would perhaps be in a different place.
A questioner picked up on Holder’s suggestion, asking how it could be fair or legal “if you’re picking different forums for different defendants based on where you can be sure that the outcome will be a conviction.” And then Holder readjusted the mask he had just let slip, and said that of course he wasn’t doing that.

This statement of Holder’s is completely consistent with Obama’s May remarks in which he stated that dangerous people “who cannot be prosecuted for past crimes” will not be released.

The American people need to understand: Obama is not giving KSM a trial because he believes it’s the right thing to do. He is giving a trial to KSM only because he believes that a conviction seems certain — and if for some reason the government turns out to be wrong about that, KSM is going to be held anyway.

Microsoft Paint-ing TCU Nike Uniforms

closer to the color of a horned lizard, and closer to the color of the TCU Coaches trousers.

It looks like I Microsoft Paint-ed the stands behind the end zone. Did not. That's what the stands look like under the lights, and digitally photographed.


Think I prefer purple helmets. Do not prefer the gray pants. Tan/beige is better.

Famous Cousin Jeff likes the thin red stripes on the Nike helmets -- evocative of horned lizards shooting projectile streams of blood out of their eyes. I concur: the thin red stripes are cool. The entire Nike helmet is pretty cool. Re Nike uniforms: I just don't like the gray pants.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Gameday! Go Frogs! Update: TCU 55 - Utah 28

Update: and it wasn't that close. TCU led 35-7 midway through the second quarter. The uniforms must have made the difference.

Biggest game in half a century!

--Amon Carter Stadium sold out early in the week--

This is Baugh with the Redskins - but I painted him in TCU Purple. Sam doesn't mind.

Look at the similar balance and weight distributions of Favre (#4) and of Baugh - right down to the angles of their foot positions. Both players are "slingers", and both have a lot of weight on their front foot. Over 60 years apart, their legs and weight distribution are amazingly similar.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Nike Promotion TCU Uniform

for Saturday's Utah game:
Nike is promoting skin-tight lightweight uniforms.
Article and more photos.
The helmet and pants are a gray mottle which is supposed to evoke horned toad skin.

The uniform design is pretty cool. However: missed color scheme opportunity. Too much gray/black.

A horned toad has a tan/khaki/gray mottle which camouflages it in arid environments. The uniform's gray/black doesn't evoke horned toad skin. The uniform needs some tan.

Also, golden/tan/khaki colored pants look fantastic with purple jerseys, as shown by TCU great Davey O'Brien, Heisman Trophy Winner in 1938:

Therefore, at least in the football pants, TCU needs more tan and less gray. I took an old sketch of a Komodo Dragons uniform and unleashed Microsoft Paint. Imagine yourself sitting in Amon Carter Stadium on a sunny afternoon, watching warm-ups between Utah and TCU. Which TCU color scheme looks better?

Added: attempt to paint sunlight and shadows onto Sammy Baugh's uniform. This is Baugh with the Redskins - but I painted him in TCU Purple. Sam doesn't mind.

An aside: look at the similar balance and weight distributions of Favre (#4) and of Baugh - right down to the angles of their foot positions. Both players are "slingers", and both have a lot of weight on their front foot. Over 60 years apart, they are in amazingly similar body positions.