Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Egnor Kicks The Hornet's Nest

The man is on a roll, attracting all the wisest acolytes of PZ Myers to give him what for.



Friday, August 26, 2011

Gettin' Jiggy With Silverlight

I created this today. It is done entirely in Silverlight markup, with no algorithmic source code.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Well-Earned Rant

My how the tables have turned:
Suddenly, you’ve all found your inner nation building, war is necessary neo-conservatism. And you like it, you really like it! Now there’s no more “chickens are coming home to roost“, just “hum, roasted chicken, want some?”

You want everyone to think that this what you’ve always supported. Except when you didn’t.

You same folks were mysteriously silent when Ghadaffi turned in his WMD arsenal shortly after we invaded Iraq. That was trivial, a silly distraction to the more important constant and unrelenting ‘Bush lied’ attacks. You were too busy spouting off about how it was an illegal war, that millions of Iraqi civilians were being slaughtered and how we can’t be the world’s police force.

Well now, times have changed. Or rather, a Democrat occupies the White House so those things are completely irrelevant now.

Pres. Bush, along with his supporters, was unmercifully villified and unrelentingly condemned, still to this day, for spending a year groveling at the UN and getting the approval of our Congress to dispose of Saddam Hussein. A lunatic who gassed his own people, invaded Kuwait and set their oil wells afire and waged a decade long war with Iran, which killed millions, and included the use of WMD’s. While Pres. Obama spent a couple hours informing, (no approval needed evidentially for the Noble Peace Prize winner), the UN and a couple members of congress that he wanted to topple ole Muammar (before going on another vacation).

And we’re just expected to meekly climb on board and forget all that?

Think again.

Have we seen one news story about any civilian deaths in Libya? One? Am I to believe no civilian deaths occurred, that the bombs dropped by Pres. Obama miraculously didn’t injure, maim or kill anyone they were not intended for? Only under Pres. Bush could that happen we’re lead to believe.

Has there been even one war protest to speak of? In San Francisco, Madrid, London, anywhere?

I somehow missed Christiane Amanpour or any breathless reporter informing us that Libya was a quagmire after the predicted “couple of weeks” war waged on for five months. Along with all the hand wringing about how much deeper in debt it was causing us to be.


And all of us Neanderthal Conservatives are to just go along for the ride, to forget the Left’s red faced indignation, their self righteous screeds, their “War is not the answer” lamenting?

Only if you’re high on medical marijuana would you think we’ve forgotten the kabuki theatre of ‘peace through dialogue‘, and my personal favorite - we need to ‘better understand our enemies‘ (of which the then Sen. Obama wrote an op-ed eight days after 9/11/01). Not forgetting either the constant, idiotic cries of “jingoism”, the omnipresent labeling of America as “imperialistic” (still waiting for proof of) all neatly mixed with a grotesquely distorted and convoluted misuse of historical missteps of the USA into a bitter and sour cocktail of “America is the real terrorists”. Yup, that was tasty.

This forum doesn’t allow me to tell all you born again “chicken hawks” precisely where you can put your new found globe trotting, defenders of the oppressed, democracy is a universal right, war IS indeed the answer, ya’ hypocritical, chest thumbing jackwagons.

You’re so smart, you’ll figure it out.

Friday, August 19, 2011


From the comments: “The untold story is that redistribution of income is, by and large, not designed to help the poor but to preserve social stability on behalf of the rich (or a portion of them). It’s like Guido Calabresi used to tell his students on the first day of classes at Yale. Are you in favor of high taxes? Yes. Are you in favor of high spending? Yes. Do you want to see your seats at Yale redistributed to people with lower test scores? Silence. Aha, he would say, you just want to redistribute other people’s advantages, not your own.”

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Plain Truth

Michael Egnor:
'Cheryl' wants to Expel me...

Commentors on atheist blogs often provide the clearest insight into atheist nastiness. Here's a snippet from one "Cheryl", a dyspeptic materialist commenting on my observation that materialist theories of the mind are gibberish and not the least consistent with neuroscience.

If [Egnor] weren’t a practicing neurosurgeon, I’d have compassion for him. But as it is, I’m appalled he’s still licensed to practice medicine.
Now please understand that all I've done to incur Cheryl's compassionless wrath is to disagree with her. I present evidence that materialism is an inadequate theory of the mind. That has enraged Cheryl so much that she objects to the fact that I'm licensed to practice medicine.

She presents no evidence that I'm unqualified to practice, or that I'm an incompetent surgeon, or that my patient outcomes are anything but good. Actually, I'm a tenured professor of neurosurgery and vice-chairman of my department. I'm an active scientist and educator, and have a good surgical practice.

Nothing objective about my qualifications would lead Cheryl to be 'appalled' that I'm still licensed to practice medicine. She just despises me, apparently, because I question her ideology. That is, she's appalled that I haven't lost my livelihood merely because I don't accept materialism.

Is the practice of medicine dependent on acceptance of doctrinaire materialism? Does science presuppose hard materialism?

Well, I'm in no danger of losing my career, despite the fact that I piss off materialists. But imagine if I were a graduate student in biology, or a young post-doc, or an assistant professor and didn't have tenure or seniority or a long track record of accomplishment to protect my livelihood. I would be in significant professional peril for not towing the materialist line.

The scientific world is full of little brownshirts like Cheryl. If you tow the line-- if you pay lip service to materialism-- you have a job. I have friends who are biologists-- several quite accomplished scientists-- who don't believe the materialist cr*p for a minute. But they stay silent. As one told me: "I gotta feed my family, Mike, and if I spoke out, I'd never get a job or a grant again"

Unless you're bullet-proof, you've got to be careful in science, especially in biology. There are a lot of Cheryls out there. A lot of them have titles like 'chairman' or 'grant reviewer' or 'journal editor' or are just colleagues who can make your life hell. There is an ideological ticket that you gotta get punched, and if you don't get in line, well... they'll find a way to.. um... Expel you.

Thanks, Cheryl, for making it so clear.

Excellent Critique By Jon Stewart

As he skewers media treatment of "invisible candidate" Ron Paul.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Peter Hitchens

As quoted at Instapundit:
ETER HITCHENS: Police water cannon and plastic bullets? After 50 years of the most lavish welfare state on earth? What an abject failure. “Bitter laughter is my main response to the events of the past week. You are surprised by what has happened? Why? I have been saying for years that it was coming, and why it was coming, and what could be done to stop it. I have said it in books, in articles, over lunch and dinner tables with politicians whose lips curled with lofty contempt. So yes, I am deeply sorry for the innocent and gentle people who have lost lives, homes, businesses and security. Heaven knows I have argued for years for the measures that might have saved them. . . . As the polluted flood (it is not a tide; it will not go back down again) of spite, greed and violence washes on to their very doorsteps, well-off and influential Left-wingers at last meet the filthy thing they have created, and which they ignored when it did not affect them personally.”

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I Do Not Like Them, Uncle Sam-I-Am

Seen here:
I do not like this Uncle Sam, I do not like his health care scam. I do not like these dirty crooks, or how they lie and cook the books. I do not like when Congress steals, I do not like their secret deals. I do not like ex-speaker Nan, I do not like this ‘YES WE CAN’..I do not like this spending spree, I’m smart, I know that nothing’s free. I do not like their smug replies, when I complain about their lies. I do not like this kind of hope. I do not like it. Nope, nope, nope!

Monday, August 08, 2011

Klavan: Leftism A Synonym For Failure

Good stuff:
As the 9/11 massacre underscored the failure of the left’s multicultural worldview, so the current debt crisis highlights the failure of leftist redistributionism.

In fact, leftism has failed utterly. It has failed everywhere and it has never done anything else but fail. From the murderous, leftist tyrannies of the Soviet Union and China to the soft but nonetheless oppressive and stagnant socialism of a moribund Europe, the relativist, wealth-crushing, overweening state has revealed itself to be an engine of misery and collapse.

This is a disappointment to many. To those who feel they are entitled to the fruits of other people’s labor, to those who feel their good intentions can be brought to fruition by the government, and to those, most of all, who fancy themselves elite, who fancy themselves better able to make moral and economic decisions on your behalf from on high than you, the citizen, can do on your own — to all of these, the failure of leftism is a trauma so great it has yet to be accepted. Rather, in order to distract both their followers and their opponents — and maybe themselves — from the gathering facts on the ground, leftists routinely rely on three well-worn techniques: insults, stupid arguments and lies.

The insults we all know. Disagree with the left and you’re a racist, a sexist, an Islamophobe — whatever. What do such insults even mean, really? Let’s say you oppose Barack Obama — and let’s say you really are a racist — does that mean his share-the-wealth ideology works? Of course not. If you’re a sexist, does that make women less interested in babies or more interested in trucks? If you’re Islamophobic, does that change the odds that the man who murders you will be named Mohammad? We are what we are and the world is what it is regardless of our personal merits and failings. The insults — for the information of all you teabagging terrorists out there — are just the sound of the left indulging in base intimidation, hoping they can keep you from spreading the word that their philosophy has failed — failed always and everywhere.


Quote Of The Day

"Democrats Continue To Accuse The Tea Party Of Terrorism As Leftists Burn London To The Ground"


Saturday, August 06, 2011

Philosophical Bumper Sticker

"Honk if you lack free will"

Seen in comments here.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Quote Of The Week

Vox Day re:the S&P downgrade of US debt:
The worrisome thing is these are the agencies that still had Enron at AAA when it was going bankrupt. It boggles the mind to think how bad U.S. finances must be for the ratings agencies to actually notice.

One Can Only Hope

It is high time for the Federal Reserve to stop enabling the thieves.

Charles Hugh Smith:
Many observers expect the Federal Reserve to bail out the stock market next Tuesday with an announcement of QE3, another round of "monetary easing" to reinstall the trade in risk assets. If they do, it will fail. The basic reason it will fail is that the Fed's credibility has fallen below a critical threshold. Put another way, the quasi-religious trust in the Fed's infallibility and power to single-handedly reverse global markets has been eroded by reality: QE2 was a monumental failure.

Here's a couple of things to understand about the Fed before you "buy the bounce when they announce QE3."

1. Though nominally independent, the Fed is a political construct. The idea that public opinion and political support have no influence on the Fed is wrong; the Fed's failure to revive the economy while squandering trillions of dollars propping up banks and Wall Street bonuses was not lost on the political class. Though nobody's talking about it, the Fed's abject failure to revive the real economy has greatly diminished its political range of maneuver.

Rumor has it that the word has already gone out to the Fed not to intervene with additional trillions to prop up Europe.

2. The consensus view is the Fed has either engineered the stock market drop to give it a free hand with QE3, or it will be "forced to do something" to combat the implosion of its pet fix to the broken economy, the "wealth effect" of rising stocks.

What these views miss is the Fed is now in a no-win endgame where its best move is to minimize the damage to what's left of its own reputation and credibility. The worst move here would be to double-down on QE3, because if it failed to goose global markets in a sustained fashion, then the Fed's remaining credibility and "magic" would vanish in a puff of smoke.

Chairman Ben Bernanke telegraphed this in his recent testimony to Congress, in which he basically stated that the Fed had done all it could and there was little more it could do other than wave a dead chicken and chant a few old incantations. Though he dutifully repeated the standard reassurances, i.e. "There is always more monetary easing we can do," he was careful to lower expectations that such easing would accomplish anything.

His testimony was that of someone setting up CYA in a major way. (CYA = cover your behind from recrimination when things head south.)

3. The Fed's power rests not in the fabled printing press but in the invisible coin of trust. Now that its fallibility has been exposed, its power, i.e. the magical faith in the guaranteed efficacy of its actions, has been destroyed.

This cloak of invincibility is what generated its power, and now that its grand policy of rescuing the economy via monetary easing and "the wealth effect" have collapsed into smoking ruins, that cloak has been shredded.

The folks running the Fed are not stupid, though they may be profoundly misguided. If they announce a vast QE2-type "easing," they would be taking on a potentially fatal risk, as the entire blame for the coming debacle would fall squarely on the Fed. They know a QE2-type easing will fail, because they have undeniable evidence that QE2 failed.

In other words: since they know QE3 cannot revive the economy or the market, then why on earth would they bet the farm pursuing a policy that's doomed to fail? That would be a form of institutional suicide.

While doing nothing would expose them to political heat from politicos desperate to revive the economy by any means, the Fed is not about to step in front of the train just to satisfy inept congresspeople.

What is the least-risky course of action for the Fed? Announce some wimpy half-measures to dodge the accusation of doing nothing, but also avoid any grand QE3 measures which would shift the blame for the coming meltdown on the Fed.

The Fed is backed into a corner of the board where all the endgame choices are unsavory. The Fed squandered all its pawns, rooks and bishops in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Its political capital has been expended pursuing policies that failed to fix the financial causes of the 2008 meltdown and also failed to revive the Main Street economy. As of yesterday, the "wealth effect" created by a rising stock market has been gutted.

The Fed is on the defensive. When you're playing defense, trying to protect your King and Queen with a single Knight, the Grand Strategy is no longer an option.


The Fed bet the farm last August on QE2, and it lost. It no longer has the political capital or market credibility to make that sized bet again. It is on the defensive, and in survival mode. Big bets and grand gestures have no place in this endgame.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

If You've Ever Owned An Old VW, You'll Want TO Watch This

My first couple of cars were '67 Bugs, which I drove from about 1982 to 2008.

This is a beautiful video tribute to old VW's.

Cool Photo

Seen here:

A Handy Formula

HOW TO PREDICT YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY PAYOUT. If you’re 50 or under, try this methodology: Pick a number. Then subtract that number from itself. You’re done!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

A Frank Exchange Of Views


If This Be Totalitarianism, Then Bring It On!

Plus this: “Incidentally, nice bit of Orwellian doublethink to call the grass-roots, libertarian-oriented Tea Party ‘Totalitarian.’ This has to be the first ‘Totalitarian’ movement in the history of mankind that, if it gets everything it wants…will leave you the hell alone.”

Monday, August 01, 2011

"We?" Who Is This "We", Reporterette?

Her bias is showing, caught on tape during a Whitehouse press briefing.