Saturday, October 1, 2011

Goin' ridin'

Off today to ride the Boreal Ridge Trial. 8 miles from my house. Couldn't they have made it any closer? Actually, no. Heh.

The club previously held their yearly "ski hill trial" at Donner Ski Ranch, aka "the granite patch", but there was some kind of property line issue so they moved it exactly one ridgeline over to Boreal Mountain Resort. Even closer and right off I-80.

I'm getting sick and tired of this http/blogspot/img/gif crap turning up about half the time I try to put in a link like in 3 outta 3 in this post. Fixer, I think the Dingo Sisters need to visit their office and put a little fear in 'em.


Moi, trophy and bike in hand. I was once again the only rider in my class, so the trophy is kinda like the self-esteem award given to a kid for solo tetherball if he managed to wrap the rope around the pole. I bled for the damn thing so that's just fine!

As you may know, riding an observed section without putting your feet down or otherwise bungling it is called a 'clean'. My motorcycle cleaned a section today without me. I had cleaned this section on the 1st loop, but on the 2d loop my left handlebar caught a sapling-type tree. This turned the front wheel sharply full left. At the same time my right arm, being attached to the right end of the bar, got about as long as it will ever be and, trying to make itself even longer, grabbed a handful of throttle as a result. At this point, the evolution was out of my hands. Literally. I flew off and the motorbike, suddenly unweighted and with a fresh blast of power, straightened itself up and rocketed the half dozen feet through the exit of the section and tipped over. The checkers instantly asked if I was OK and all I could say was, "I cleaned it! I cleaned it!". Heh. They scored me clean. Everybody I told about that got a big kick out of it. Oh yeah, I cleaned that section on the 3rd loop.

I got home tired, dirty, sore, a little battered and bruised, but HAPPY! It was a great day at a beautiful venue doing what I love with a lot of nice people. It doesn't get any better than that.

Just sayin' ...



Tweet from @maxbsawicky (Max B. Sawicky): Liberal states with lower unemployment than Texas and no oil: VT, HI, MD, MA, WI, NY, DE. #socialism
Unemployment Rates for States


Hammering, dogs barking ... My head, it is numb ...

Just read Krugman ...

And see how much more depressing things are gonna get unless our "elites" change their way of thinking:

Martin Wolf is getting frantic, as well he should. The austerians have brought us to the brink of a vast disaster. A recession in Europe looks more likely than not; and the question for the United States is not whether a lost decade is possible, but whether there is any plausible way to avoid one.


Indeed. Posen’s “unduly influential voices” are my Very Serious People. And it has been an awesome spectacle watching the VSPs search, obsessively, for reasons not to fight mass unemployment. Fiscal policy must tighten to appease the invisible bond vigilantes and please the confidence fairy. Interest rates must rise because, well, um, inflation, well, no, low rates cause moral hazard — yes, that must be it.


I don’t fully understand it. But a large part of it, it seems obvious, is the intense desire to see economics as a morality play of sin and punishment, where the sinners are, of course, workers and governments, not the bankers. Pain is not an unfortunate consequence of policies, it’s what is supposed to happen.


I don't have much hope that things will change anytime soon, unless Obama's reelection chances get much worse.

Got a buncha guys crawling all over my house today, putting on a new roof. My job will be keeping the Dingo Sisters pacified, being they don't like strangers (a Cattle Dog trait) and are chomping at the bit to take a piece outta somebody's ass for making all the noise that's disturbing their morning nap.

Saturday Emmylou Blogging

Possibly the most iconic Emmylou tune.

Thanks to 1000Magicians, UK.

Friday, September 30, 2011

I gotcher friendly skies...

Gleefully gleeped from our pal Lisa. Our brother deuddersun helped build the sets for the show as well.

'Shrooms make the man

Study finds ‘magic mushrooms’ may improve personality long-term

One more reason why I'm such a terrific guy!

I took those things at a bluegrass festival at some wild animal park in San Diego County many years ago. It was bitchin'! Plenty OK in the daylight, but when the sun went down and the big cats started sounding off it got even better! Ah, jungle noises...

Then I drove the 130 miles home, still under the influence. I got called "my hero" by one of my female passengers. She shoulda seen it from my side! No heroics, just survival. Heh.

AF Academy not on board with AF Chief of Staff

Air Force Academy Was Against Chief Of Staff's Religious Neutrality Edict Before It Was For It

One cadet wrote to MRFF reporting that when he asked if he could post the Chief of Staff's memorandum on a bulletin board at the Academy, the response he got was, "Don't go there. Who's side are you on?" Apparently, wanting to post a memorandum from the Chief of Staff of the Air Force now means you're on the "wrong side" at the Air Force Academy. [...]

There's no doubt "whose side" the AF Weenie Academy is on. Not ours. The Air Force used to be a proud service, defenders of liberty. What the hell happened?

[...] In fact, the number of MRFF's clients at the Academy jumped from 297 to 341 in the week and a half between the Air Force Times article and this Wednesday, when the Academy finally decided to distribute the memorandum, weeks after it was issued. (This cadet's email, along with emails from two other cadets, are included at the end of this post. I urge everyone to please read these emails, which describe the situation at the Academy far better than anything I could ever write.)

So, why the sudden change of heart on the part of the Academy leadership? Why did they finally decide to distribute General Schwartz's memorandum after weeks of withholding it? Well, maybe it was this nice big billboard, containing the entire text of the memorandum, put up by MRFF on Tuesday at a very busy intersection in Colorado Springs, the home of the Air Force Academy.

Much more. Go see the sign and read the emails.

Note to General Schwartz: You need to go hold a little dungaree liberty on the MFIC of that joint.

And just ...

For all the bleeding hearts who are all puffed up and crying this morning about "the assassination of an American citizen", let me make this perfectly clear. We got bigger things to worry about than whatever rights some fundie goat fucker in a cave has or doesn't. The minute you leave this country, align yourself with a terrorist organization, and plot to kill innocent people, you deserve whatever the U.S military sends in your direction.

Capture him and bring him back for trial? Sorry but we don't need to waste more American lives in another shithole. If he was in the States, by all means. If he was in a place where we had police cooperation (Europe, Japan, Korea, etc.), most certainly put him in front of a jury. In a place where there is barely a government, where any attempt the locals would make at arrest and extradition would end up in a buncha dead policemen (if they were so inclined to take the job on; there's a reason he's been so successful from Yemen, you know) and no arrest, this was the best alternative.

Save your complaining for the innocent Americans who end up getting their balls broken by the Military/Security apparatus of this country. Stop worrying about some asshole in Trashcanistan who'd kill you and then spit in your face if he got the chance.

And just to add one more thing: This shit ain't new. We just never used the fact we killed assholes like this for political gain before. You can thank cable news for that. It used to happen quietly. 30 years ago, nobody would have known bin Laden was dead, let alone that we did it. Same thing woulda happened with this clown if it weren't for all these politicians who've never been in a war zone waving their pricks around.

Now ...

That's escargot!

Gotta get ready for court ...

Quote of the Day

Seth Bracken about his experience at a "Pray Away The Gay" conference:


I was propositioned more times at a conference that was supposedly changing people straight than I ever have been at a Pride festival, gay bar or party. I had guys old enough to be my father putting their arms around me, bumping up against my leg and asking to take me home.


And just an additional thought: What kind of confusing experience must this be for a teenager? I'm no pshrink but I can see, at the least, where this would cause a lot of problems in a kid who's probably been bullied and outcast already. At one point, he's told what he feels is a sin and must get this "therapy" and once he's there, he's probably getting hit on by every old queer who's been forced into a het marriage. You know, those who believe homosexuality is a sin and are there to get "cured" too.

These things are nothing but godly hookup bars.

Great thanks to the manliest, godliest man alive.

American Autumn?

Mike Krieger via Da Beas:


Most of you reading this right now are thinking that this is interesting but he is exaggerating and this will blow over. I am here to assure you that it is not and this whole thing is about to grow exponentially as the economy continues to stagnate and people climb the learning curve. Are you aware that the founder of, David Talbot, is publicly calling for an “American Spring?” This of course is a reference to the Arab Spring, in which revolution swept across North Africa earlier this year and led to the collapse of the Tunisian and Egyptian governments and then major government bribes to the people living in the oil rich kingdoms. Mr. Talbot writes “In these increasingly hard times, Salon is dedicating itself to an American revival. Our editorial mission will become more explicitly and aggressively populist. We will be publishing more investigative pieces, exposing the shadow dance of power. And both Democratic and Republican targets will be fair game, since both parties are increasingly under the control of the same corporate forces.” His full piece is here ... You need to read it if you want to understand where all of this is headed. How about journalist Chris Hedges talking about “Occupy Wall Street” ... We the people now understand it is not “rich vs. poor,” businessperson vs. teacher.” It is serf vs. oligarch. They are 0.1% and we know what they are up to. GAME ON. [original links edited for readability]


See you in Hell ...


Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S.-born cleric linked to al Qaeda's Yemen-based wing, has been killed, Yemen's Defense Ministry said on Friday.

"The terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki has been killed along with some of his companions," it said in a statement sent by text message to journalists, but gave no details.


"Gave no details" means the Americans got him with a drone or the SEALs "did a bin Laden" on him. You won't hear details because the Yemeni Street doesn't need to know about our military operations in their country.

What's old ...

Is new again.

What I'd give ...

For a guillotine*. At the least, a good, sturdy brick wall and my old, trusty M-14. The "Let Them Eat Cake" crowd thinks the Occupy Wall Street protest is amusing:

It's hard to believe it's real, but here is video evidence of Wall Streeters drinking champagne from a balcony as they watch the protesters walk by:


Like I said, there's a buncha fuel laying around. Shit like this might just be the spark that lights it.

*Video at the link.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


"Guten Morgen! You vill haff a vunderful day!"

An odd similarity between South Carolina's state flag and another one from history which both appear to depict Saharan oases and religious symbols.

Quote of the Day

87 year old New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg to Secaucus Fats:

"If the governor wants to challenge my age, I am ready for a foot race whenever he chooses."

Now ...

If we could only get HRH Governor Cuomo II to sign on to this:

Montana’s Democratic Governor Brian Schweitzer believes his state should follow Vermont’s lead in progressive health care reform at the state level. He plans to ask the federal government to grant Montana waivers to adopt a better system modeled after the one used in the neighboring Canadian province of Saskatchewan ...

New York State borders two Canadian provinces (Quebec and Ontario). Can we copy their systems? Because I could do a lot with another $16.5K a year in my pocket.

London calling ...

With a message for us:


Please, we beg you, elect a grown up.


You are scaring us.


Off to court ...


Pic stolen from Blue Girl. Click to make big.

America, land of the ignorant, home of the stupid.

Early case this morning; see yas later ...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

L'Shana Tovah!!!

Gleefully stolen by me from a Facebook group I am in:

L'Shana Tovah!!!

You must remember this,
A bris is still a bris,
A chai is just a chai.
Pastrami still belongs on rye,
As time goes by.

With holidays in view,
A Jew is still a Jew,
On that you can rely.
No matter if we eat tofu
As hours slip by.

Old shtetl customs, never out of date.
All those potatoes mother has to grate.
Honey, tsimus, latkes, chopped liver on our plate
The best that gelt can buy.

Some would send us to perdition,
But we're strengthened by tradition,
That no one can deny.
We roam, but we recall our birthright,
As time goes by.

Dreidels and chocolate, never out of date.
Ancient Jewish stories that we all relate.
Blue-and-white giftwrap, everything that's great
And festive chazerai!

It's still the same old Torah,
It's still the same menorah,
We've latkes still to fry.
It's yomtov when we feel most blessed,
As time goes by.


Best wishes for a healthful and sweet new year!

Accept It, GOP: Mitt Romney Is All You've Got

Guess Who

There's one part of the Rick-Perry-sucks-at-debatin' story that's been left out: it wasn't just that Perry may as well have been on stage blowing goats(*) for how appalling he was. That's the easy headline. No, the truth is that Mitt Romney kicked Perry's ass all over the Orlando Convention Center last week. When he first announced he was running, pundits across the spectrum expected Perry to just saunter into the GOP saloon, order whiskey, shoot the piano player, down the shot, and take the whore upstairs, all before the doors had stopped swinging.

But at the Fox "news"/Google (really?) debate in batshit insane central Florida, it was the Harvard-educated milk drinker who told Perry that he didn't like his pretty girl hair and then wiped the floor with him.

*I'd pay to see that! Please, God...

Look, dear GOP: Mitt Romney will be your nominee and, truly, there is nothing you can do about it. You can go through this whole charade. You can get Sarah Palin in on the party. Chris Christie ain't gonna run no matter how much money or pie you dangle in front of him because, while he may be despicable, he's smart: he knows that he's got a far better chance of winning in 2016. So there is no savior for you. There is no genuine hope on the horizon. You are stuck with the boring Mormon who is desperately trying for crazy conservative street cred by beating up on the cowboy. Sorry to tell you all, but this year is about Romney finally buying the nomination and then losing to Obama. End of story. (Note: Unless Republican efforts to steal the election through limiting voter access succeed.)

And why is that? Obviously, because the Republican Party is fucking insane right now. [...]

Please read the rest.

I've got a sneakin' hunch that no matter how the batcrap crazies vote in the primaries, the GOP ruling wing is gonna go with Willard as their nominee. They'll lose by less that way.

(Note: Local insanity is far more likely to succeed than national insanity, so the nutzoids could win more congressional seats.)

Indeed. All politics and a good bit of insanity are local.

Headline of the Day

10,000 secrets for a perfect marriage

Obviously written by an unmarried man. Heh.

Is Israel Over?

By Israeli historian Benny Morris.

No longer the liberal, democratic, egalitarian society it once was, Israel is fighting the Arabs—and itself.

The same could be said of the U.S., I think.

More than 50 years ago, Israel’s leaders, headed by David Ben-Gurion, believed and hoped that they were creating a social democracy, with all the requisite egalitarian accoutrements (socialized national health care, progressive income tax, child benefits, subsidized cheap housing). Ben-Gurion, who owned almost nothing and retired to a primitive hut in the Negev Desert, typified the austere lifestyle, and greatness, of the state’s founders.

This is no longer Israel. A profound, internal, existential crisis has arrived. It stems in part from the changing nature of the country, more right wing, more restrictive, far less liberal, and far less egalitarian. Many moderate Israelis fear the country is heading for ruin. Indeed, the country’s ruling class, including Benjamin Netanyahu and his predecessors Ehud Olmert (now on trial for corruption) and Ehud Barak (a former head of the Labor Party and current defense minister), live in opulence, and the feeling is that they are out of touch with reality. In Tel Aviv, where some 350,000 gathered in protest, a widespread chant, set to a popular children’s ditty, was “Bibi has three apartments, which is why we have none.”

Is Israel the canary in OUR coal mine? The lesson is that right-wings - any right-wings anywhere - are the path to ruin and darkness.

There's more. Shorter: Wise up, Israel, or you won't be a nation in fewer years than you would believe.

The same could be said of the U.S., I think.


Is the "Special Relationship" Becoming Too Expensive?

"Now I know, that I had to borrow,
Beg and steal and lie and cheat.
Trying to keep ya, trying to please ya.
‘Cause being in love with yo ass ain’t cheap.”

- Cee Lo Green

No shit ...

Stolen from Mrs. F's cousin Encino Man on the Facebook. Click to make big.

Back to court ...

Frothy the Nowhere Man ...

And other Teabag bedtime stories from D-cap.

Quote of the Day

Geov Parrish:


So, yeah, it's scary watching the Israel government, supported by a large and vocal segment of its rightward-drifting public, repeatedly shoot itself in the face. But one of the reasons it's scary is that a not small portion of the U.S. electorate, and one of its two major political parties, would like to do exactly the same thing.

We're both fucked.

Gotta get ready for court ...

Wah-wah-wah ...

I want my disaster aid! Gee, Mr. Cantor, hypocrisy much?

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-7th, is pushing for information on the status of Gov. Bob McDonnell’s request for federal disaster assistance for Louisa County residents in the wake of an earthquake there last month.


"FEMA said they have received the Governor’s request and sent it to the White House for a decision but could not provide any specific information on timing," the readout said. "Even when asked for an estimate based on past applications they were unable to do so."


When I was in the military, supply sergeants ran the world. If you put in a requisition and didn't hear anything for a while about it, and you went to supply to check on it, the sergeant would tell you it was "lost in the machine". Amazing how quickly something can be found when the machinery's gears get the proper "lubrication". Though I think this is gonna cost Mr. Cantor a little more than a bottle of Crown Royal.

And to Eric Cantor, and all the Jewish folks who are our friends, L'shanah tovah.

Thanks to TPM for the link.

Find another nut ...

Because Secaucus Fats ain't running. I've always accused the big man of being an asshole (easy enough to find examples) but I never accused him of being stupid. He knows that if he panders to The Crazy now (and that's what every GOP candidate has to do to get the nom this year), it'll kill his chances with the "mainstream" in '16 (though if the decline in the discourse continues on its present race to the bottom, it's gonna be really crazy by '16):

SIMI VALLEY, California (Reuters) - New Jersey Governor Chris Christie Tuesday again rebuffed a growing chorus of Republican pleas for him to enter the 2012 White House race.


Maybe they'll go all the way and get Ted Nugent to run.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Great Right Hope

Stewart nails it. Again. Via RawReplay:

Jon Stewart to GOP base: Your candidates aren’t the problem — it’s you

Stewart added: “It’s like your ideal candidate is a rare super-heavy element that can only exist in a particular particle accelerator and, even then, for only a fraction of a second before you all remember how much you all hate science. You guys need to take a long hard look in the mirror — you need to take a long hard look in the mirror and not come away thinking, ‘There is something wrong with this mirror.’”

Quote of the Day

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway:


"Today's economic crisis was caused by Wall Street acting improperly. Every American has paid the price -- with families losing their homes, investors losing their money, and many Americans losing their jobs. There should be absolutely no criminal or civil immunity given to banks for activity that has not yet been investigated."


Lunch is over; back to the hangings ...

Christ ... (again)

Crazy Eyes:

Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann said Monday that it would be "foolish" to normalize trade with Cuba because Hezbollah could soon have "missile sites" there.

"Why would you normalize trade with a country that sponsors terror?" the candidate asked a crowd of supporters in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. "There is reports that have come out that Cuba has been working with another terrorist organization called Hezbollah. And Hezbollah is looking at wanting to be part of missile sites in Iran and, of course, when you are 90 miles offshore from Florida, you don’t want to entertain the prospect of hosting bases or sites where Hezbollah could have training camps or perhaps have missile sites or weapons sites in Cuba."


Can't. Stand. It. Any. More.

Christ ...

I'm totally sick of all these self-appointed "morality police" who think they can deny people access or a service by dint of their subjective opinion:

The L Word star and open lesbian Leisha Hailey claims she and her girlfriend were kicked off a Southwest flight after the attendant deemed their public displays of affection inappropriate, has learned.

“I have been discriminated against by @SouthwestAir. Flt. attendant said that it was a "family" airline and kissing was not ok,” the actress posted on her Twitter account Monday afternoon.


You know, just fuck these people. Shit like this really pisses me off. If I ever got kicked off a flight for kissing my wife, somebody would be wondering how to get my boot out of their ass.

Bad enough you get nickel-and-dimed for every fucking thing when you buy your ticket and check your luggage. Bad enough you have to put up with the useless security bullshit just to get to your plane. Then, when you get aboard, you have to worry that some emotionally stunted Jesus freak might take exception to your wardrobe or your sexual orientation and fuck up your trip.

I hope this woman has the resources to sue Southwest into receivership. Fuck them.

Monday, September 26, 2011

I know ...

My posts about what's going on in Europe aren't the most popular around here but I write them for a reason. With the amount of friends I have there and the amount of time I've spent there, I've learned a lot of things. The biggest of those is how much all of our economies are intertwined. Gaius Publius channels Krugman and gives an easy to read primer on how the Euro crisis over there will affect us over here.


This is not good at all, folks, and it's not just a Europe story. As Joe Stiglitz told John and Chris last month, the U.S. is exposed to a European collapse via its banks (what did they loan? what derivatives do they hold?) and also via its consumer exports.

For example, here's Ben Bernanke saying that U.S. banks hold about $200 billion in European credit default swaps (CDS's). Are U.S. banks on the right side of those bets? And even if they are, what is the risk that the other side will actually pay off (something called "counter-party risk")?

Note also that if U.S. banks lost a good chunk of their $200bn, French and German banks would lose more, and that would ripple to our shores as well. I think this just scratches the surface.


As I've said in many posts before, "Greater Europe" was an experiment bound to fail. I just didn't think it would happen this soon.

Headin' Home

Headin' for home today. Mrs. G says it's another chance for me to work on timing my naps better...

Word of the Day: Hypocridiots, + 19 links.

How old?

Well, Gordon made it through another year without Mrs. G killing him (I should add - and not killing himself on his trial runs through the mountains either). Heh ... Happy Birthday, bro!

And a little known Gordon fact: He was the "rum boy" for the Founding Fathers at the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Uncle Mike Wants You!

For the New York City Army. Seems the NYPD has anti-air capability:

NEW YORK — The New York Police Department could take down a plane if necessary, Commissioner Ray Kelly said Sunday, describing the counter-terror measures he implemented after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Kelly decided the city couldn't rely on the federal government alone after the attacks, he told CBS' "60 Minutes".

And so he set about creating the NYPD's own counter-terrorism unit, which is prepared for multiple scenarios and could even take down a plane, he said.


Why do I get the feeling this isn't going to work out too well?


Spending summers in rural Germany from the time I was 4, I learned real early not to eat mushrooms unless you know exactly which species you're looking at (or you're in a coffeeshop in Amsterdam). Some benign and deadly mushrooms can look unbelievably similar. Even after years of going with my Tante into the forest and picking them, I still wouldn't feel safe picking them without supervision from an expert.

That said, this via our pal Montag:

With the rainy weather recently, lawns are producing bumper crops of mushrooms. And doctors at Georgetown University Hospital are offering some advice:

No matter how tempting the fungi, don’t yank them out of the ground and pop them into your mouth.


Believe you me, with nearly three times the normal rainfall this year, I got lotsa mushrooms in the yard and some look downright delicious. Something to think about though, my dogs, who graze through the yard and eat all sorts of stuff, won't go near them. If a pair of perennially-hungry Cattle Dogs with cast iron digestive systems won't eat something, odds are you shouldn't either.

Oh, the irony...

Ironic Times

Armed Services Committee Chairman: Cuts in Pentagon Spending Would Mean Fewer Would Want to Join Military
Which could lead us down slippery slope to peace.

Can you retire from a 20-year "stop loss"?

China's Factory Output Drops for 3rd Straight Month
As Americans decide to wear last year's clothes, watch last year's TVs, use last year's computers.

From the "Latest Headlines" crawl:

...Faster-than-light neutrino booked on Ed Sullivan...

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Crickets ...

That's all you heard when the "Ground Zero Mosque" opened this week.

Mark Jacobson notes that the Ground Zero Mosque opened yesterday and....nothing happened. No protests, no Fox News cameras, not even so much as an outraged blog post from Pamela Geller


Just another faux outrage for the Republicans to wave around; distracting the ignorant, uneducated, and just plain fucking stupid from whatever dishonest bullshit they were doing at the time.

And just this to add. If a person doesn't get the Republican agenda by now, they don't even bother hiding it anymore, either you're a moron (through no fault of your own; medical problem, brain injury, bad genetics, never went to school, etc.), willfully ignorant (if you're smart enough to get it, but just don't want to) because you can't admit to yourself that your party of choice has gone completely over the deep end, or a person willing to fuck the rest of us - and this country - just to protect your slice of the pie.

I don't hold any animosity toward the moron (he/she can't help it) but those in the other 2 categories can just go fuck yourselves.