“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Taliban claim a Chinook Helicopter kill. Look closely.

Talk about being a lucky looks like the Taliban missile hit the hummer in the sling and the helicopter and crew skated.


  1. Things didn't llook as lucky for the Humvee on the road, at 2:20.

    If the enemy were to get some SAM7s, we'll be Russians redux, waist deep in the goat stew.

  2. Seems that some in the GOP enjoy reading at the EB, picking up the choicest of the ideas and developing leglislative proposals from them.

    No new tariffs, but a change in the Tax Code, as, I have proposed, time and again.

    Trying to eenable the Republicans, each time.

    Puts affordable coverage and choice within reach of all Americans. We do this by first ending the discrimination in the tax code that rewards corporations and employers for offering insurance yet offers no benefit to the unemployed and is unfair to the self-employed. Our current tax laws are a relic of the 1940's when Americans stayed in the same job far longer than they do today. It's time for a reboot.

    Specifically, we would shift health care tax benefits to individuals and families in the form of a "Medi-Choice" tax rebate worth about $2,200 for individuals and $5,700 for families. Under our plan, if you like the health care you have, you can keep it - but you'll have more money in your pocket because you will still receive a tax rebate.

    The Patients' Choice Act lowers health care costs and insurance premiums by more sensibly caring for those with chronic illnesses and those deemed "uninsurable." In addition to innovative prevention initiatives, our plan utilizes risk adjustment mechanisms and other options at the State level - such as reinsurance and risk pools - to extend coverage to those with chronic medical conditions. These steps will empower these individuals with greater choice, greater financial security, and a higher quality of life

    First and foremost, to a conservative revival, incremental steps to enhanced personal freedom and responsibility, if those steps are not the "program" the Federal juggernaught will roll over us all.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. But why the GOP did not float the idea dring their 8 years at the helm ...

    Well, the Republicans are not conservatives.

    They've been Federal Socialists, first and foremost.
    The proof is in the tasting, yummmmie, what a pudding Mr Bush baked. Compassionately seasoned to his taste.

  5. Another dose of reality, for bob and doug.

    Seems that Team Obama is expanding gun owner rights, in an area where Team43 was afraid to walk their talk. Ain't that sumthin'

    To the frustration and discouragement of many Democrats, House and Senate lawmakers and aides say it now appears likely that President Obama will this week sign into law a provision allowing visitors to national parks and refuges to carry loaded and concealed weapons.

    The White House is lukewarm at best on the gun provision, which was added to a popular measure imposing new rules on credit card companies. But the Democrats who now control both Congress and the White House appear ready to allow it to survive rather than derail a consumer-friendly credit card measure that Mr. Obama is eager to sign as Congress heads off for a Memorial Day recess.

    “Timing is everything in politics,” said Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma and the champion of the gun proposal

    Incremental gains.
    That's how the Federal Socialists came to control the US, 100 years of incrementalism.

    It is the only road back, too.

    Advocates of Gun Rights Are Poised for a Victory

  6. I draw several conclusions from this report.

    1) Pakistan’s leaders are still the masters of the double game. It is possible, indeed very likely, that the Pakistani government engineered the crisis in the Swat valley in order to extract more emergency and long-term assistance from the U.S. government. Money being fungible, Pakistan was able to reduce its own funding on anti-Taliban activities and divert those funds to the nuclear program. All the while the U.S. believed (incorrectly) that its new funding was adding to the resources against the Taliban


  7. Survey Finds Link Between Obesity and Flu SeverityBy David Brown and Robin Shulman
    Washington Post Staff Writers
    , May 20, 2009

    A survey of people hospitalized because of swine flu in California has raised the possibility that obesity is as much of a risk factor for serious complications from the flu as diabetes, heart disease and pregnancy, all known to raise a person's risk.

  8. Sorry Bobal, I did have to go sailing last night. Good wind, good race, and we won!

    You asked:

    You mean some aren't 'fully qualified'? What's that mean.

    ****In Canada each province runs their own Health Care system that must meet federal mandates. You have to be a legal resident in the province for a set amount of time. You can't just show up at a hospital to get 'free' care. You've got to have your Health Care Card. If you don't have one you have to pay.***

    I have read about problems with undue wait times but have never experienced it myself.==

    Have you ever gone in for anything serious?

    ****No, I've never had anything serious to deal with myself (knock on wood) but I have had cause to deal with the system quite regularly over the last 8 years with one of my kids - a rather obscure ailment but he's doing well.

    The wait times that fly about the press the most have to do with emergency wait times. Some people seem to think that the emergency room should be the first place to go when seeking medical attention. Silly people. The gov. is trying to help people understand that emergency rooms are for emergencies and if you show you will be subject to triage. See you family doctor, go to clinic, get the proper referrals. There are also problems of late with some of the more expensive testing. MRI's get clogged up due to demand. The other thing I've read about is that some cancer wards are really clogged up. There is also the continual problem of juggling the freedom of 'beds' in hospitals. Long term care patients can really clog up the system. Trying to sort out long term care facilities, hospices, ect. seem to be quite the large scale management problem.***

    Golfer, sailor, tanned, fit--no problem. Program works perfect for you.

    *** I try to stay healthy and I tell my wife that Golf really is for the exercise and not the pleasure. Standing behind a wheel of sailboat requires some effort (balancing on a pitching deck) but nothing like running a few miles. Age does seem to have an effect on my poor body and each year I get older the more hassles I have - boomeritis I've heard it called -folk staying active later in life - I Snowboard and play squash as well and those sport present some...challenges. I also like to drink. We all get old and die eventually. Rarely do we kick it in perfect health.***

  9. Here you go Bobal - you're into the cosmos and all that. A little Carl Sagan piece:

  10. Alfalfa in Idaho.

    Statewide, growers planted 1.1 million acres in 2006 (the latest year in which statistics are available). The average yield was 4.2 tons per acre.The old Swedish homestead, now producing about 588 tons of alfalfa.

    Idaho #1 Orchard Alfalfa first cut 3 tie hay.

    First cut premium quality idaho orchard alfalfa 50/50 mix hay in 3 tie 130lb bales. This hay is a premium horse hay. avaliable in loads of 22.5 ton 345 bales
    Email for price.

    Some rough figurin' puts the homestead production at about 9,000 bales of good alfalfa.

    The Modesto Bee
    Sunday, Jun. 15, 2008
    Spike in alfalfa price has horsemen, dairy farmers seeking relief.

    Jeannine Huffman, who has a horse boarding and training business north of Riverbank, said she is paying $14.95 per 100-pound bale, up from $11.95 last year. At four or five bales per horse each month, it's her biggest expense for the six or so horses at the ranch.

    For figurin' sake - 130lb bale will sell for $12 per bale, fob the farm.

    Which pencils a gross revenue of $108,000. In the best of times.

    Which ain't nearly enough to support a homestead family and farm the 140 or so acres that remain in cultivation.

  11. Small Farm In Alfalfa
    Near BLM And Mountains
    Moore, Idaho. Water Rights

    Property No. 24-256 - 70 Acres - $175,000.

    70 irrigated acres currently in alfalfa in Moore, Idaho. Property has wheel lines and water rights and great views of the Lost River Mountain Range. $175,000
    Printer Friendly Brochure.

    The aerial view is interesting.

  12. $2,500 per acre.
    Water available on site.

  13. Nick Dowling at Small Wars Journal:


    "Others are also thinking strategically about Afghanistan. Perhaps the most stunning and visual construction effort in Panjshir is Massoud’s tomb - a massive undertaking impressively perched on a mid-valley promontory. This project, a worthy memorial for Afghanistan’s fallen hero, is funded by Tehran for pennies compared to the US reconstruction effort."

    As projects go, this is certainly a smart one.

    We tend toward meat-and-potatoes projects - infrastructure at the macro and micro levels. A little concrete generosity often goes a long, long way and is indispensable in the maintenance of relationships.

    But the build-up of Massoud's tomb - whoever's choice that was given a far more limited budget to work with, earned his day's pay.

  14. .. It is possible, indeed very likely, that the Pakistani government engineered the crisis in the Swat valley in order to extract more emergency and long-term assistance from the U.S. government. ...

    Let's see where the last phase line leaves the Paki Army, before drawing really negative conclusions about motive, but there is a high likelyhood that westhawk is right.

    If, as their President says, the Paki Army is marching into the Tribal Areas, then there is the hammer to pound the Taliban onto the US anvil in Afghanistan.

    It is likely the Paki military/intel elites engineered the Swat crisis, divining the motive for that behaviour, there are multiple scenarios available for consideration.

    Just be happy that President Obama has installed six stars over Afghanistan, to both illuminate the darkness and provide navigational bearings.

    What with the GPS system in need of an upgrade.

  15. Not sure I follow some of your figurin' there, Rat.

    Up here, no irrigation, one cutting.

    That's south Idaho, irrigated, 4.2 tons, which I really don't believe anyway.

    My alfalfa, which is looking better as it fills in, pays the taxes and a little more. I get 1/3, pay 1/3 of some of the inputs, he does the all the work.

    The larks seem to like it.


    Yup, all the Taliban need is some Stingers and things look grimmer.


    Idaho State Police officer shot two Nez Perce, one dead, on the Tribal lands couple days ago. Both unarmed.

    He had put on the overhead out on the state highway, and they gave him a high speed chase. Pulled into Tribal land, parked in a farm.

    Something happened, but what?

    Details fuzzy.

    FBI on the case.

    Locals in uproar.

    Have no idea what happened but it is unusual for the Idaho State Police to have much contact with the Nez Perce (they got their own Tribal Police and lots of fancy new police cars).


    We're all Californians now!

    We'll all be chipping in the bail The Golden State out.

    Thanks a lot, Linear:)

    Rush: Obama 'tentacles' to bail out California

    Limbaugh quits as 'head' of GOP, rips party for abandoning Reagan

    Posted: May 20, 2009
    2:49 pm Eastern

    By Joe Kovacs

    Rush Limbaugh

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Despite the resounding rejection of higher taxes by California voters yesterday, radio giant Rush Limbaugh is predicting President Obama will extend his "tentacles" to bail out the Golden State with federal dollars.

    Limbaugh made the prognostication based on the notion that like the U.S. auto industry, California is "too big to fail."

    "What Obama will do is simply bail out California and all of the debt and all of the overspending, all of the problems will be absorbed by all of us in the other 49 states," Limbaugh said today on his No. 1 rated program.

    "I have no doubt that this is what's going to happen with Obama reaching out from Washington with his tentacles to be as involved in every facet of American life as he can be, and with nobody to stop him and with California populated with majority Obama voters."

    Tell your government to stay away from censoring talk radio and manipulating news coverage: Sign WND's Petition to Block Congressional Attacks on Freedom of Speech and Press now!

    Limbaugh, who at one point in his show resigned as "titular head of the Republican Party," blasted the GOP as he suggested the defeat of the tax hikes would be ignored by current party leadership.

    "This is not what they want," he explained. "They want growing government, too. They just want to be power players in it. This vote in California last night, that brings Ronald Reagan back to life and that's the last thing that the Republican Party, the people running it today, want. ...

    "If the Republican Party's not going to pick this up and run with it, it may as well have not happened."

    Limbaugh pointed how many members of the news media took the side of higher taxes along with Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Democrat-controlled legislature.

    He pointed to an example in today's Los Angeles Times, which features a post-vote analysis titled, "California voters exercise their power -- and that's the problem."

    The article quotes John Allswang, a retired Cal State L.A. history professor, who suggested voters "deceive themselves constantly. They're not realistic."

    As far as who should be the head of the Republican Party, Limbaugh in his irreverent fashion anointed Gen. Colin Powell in that role, despite Powell's endorsement of Obama in the campaign.

    "General Powell has the answers," Limbaugh said. "He just hasn't shared them with us."

  17. We're all Californians now!

    We'll all be chipping in the bail The Golden State out.

    Thanks a lot, Linear


    'Tis I who should thank you, all of you. Somehow I can't bring myself to do it. I'll let Arnold pass on our gratitude.

    It's only fair, after all.

    Consider all the progressive ideas y'all enjoy thanks to enlightened leadership in California/Mexifornia.

    I will contradict myself, and extend a singular and personal thank you to Doug, our esteemed ex-patriot Mexifornian.

  18. Linear, since I'm going to be a California taxpayer, does that mean I can vote in California's elections?

    No taxation without representation. No representation without a fair vote of taxpayers.

    That's what I say.

    We all should be able to vote in California's elections.

    Many Mexicans do.

    If so, I'll just let you fill out my absentee ballot for me, I'll sign it, and mail it back.


  19. Coast to Coast tonight--

    Remote Viewing
    Neuroscientist Dr. Melvin Morse will discuss how remote viewing is revealing exciting new scientific data in the areas of Unified Theory of Consciousness, mind-body healing, paranormal abilities, and spirituality.

    First Hour: Research scientist John Lott and Joel Boniek, a Montana state representative, talk about the Firearms Freedom Act.

    Should be a good shoe tonight, as Ed Sullivan used to say.

    Melvin Morse has written some books on NDEs, in children if I recall aright.

    We all know John Lott, "More Guns, Less Crime", and it should be interesting to hear what a Montana representative might have to say.

    Montana in their compact with the Union has the ability to opt out over guns, I've read, but don't know the details.

    Might be worth a listen, all around.

  20. That works for me, Bob.

    c2c sounds good tonight, too.

  21. Ceres tests hybrid switchgrass seeds, nationwide. Achieves 10 Tons per Acre, Average.

    You're looking at 1,000 gallons of ethanol/acre, twice that in California (probably, in areas of Florida, and Louisiana, also.)

    This will, probably, compete (without subsidies) with $3.50 gasoline. 100 Million Acres in the South, and Southeast (a little more than we plant in corn, now,) and we're, basically, out of the "Oil Importation" business. Which means the Saudis, Iraqis, and Russkies can kiss our sorry asses, "Goodbye."

  22. Just purchased a new (used) car to support the Economy...

    Hint It aint a Chevy, Ford or Chrysler

    Got a decent deal...

    Interest rate sucks, but not historically, just as compared to what a good home loan would be...

    and since I will write the entire thing off anyway...

    who cares...

  23. Coast to Coast should be good tonight.

    I know some think I'm nuts, with my Coast to Coast.

    The secret is, you got to be discriminating.

    There's a difference between Dr. Akaku, and the latest UFO or ghost story.

    That's part of the fun.

    But, I read Melvin Morse years ago, when I first got into it, he was good then, I don't know about now.

    Any Elephant Bar Fly of Flyer can easily appreciate John Lott, who I had the pleasure to listen to at the University of Idaho. About 50 or of us attending, attentively too, I might add too.

    Langly southern boy, as I recall. Very well spoken.

    Took my daughter.

    She's now got a Concealed Weapons Permit.

    She will not be raped again without one hell of a fight.

  24. I'm with you WiO.

    If my memory still holds together, I think I have bought a new car, make that a pickup truck, only once in my life.

    The best bargain we ever got was our used Nissan Sentra, been a great car ever since.

    (But, O, would I love to have a new pickup and camper with all the ac·cou·ter·ments.)

    That's French, don't you know.

    Looks like the best I can hope for the future is a tiny two seater, an Obamamobile, Fiat 500, cause the Marxists got us by the balls, right now.

    But I'm going to the Fourth of July Tea Parties.

    Fight back, anyway you can.

    And, I mean that.

    Sarah Palin For President!

  25. The time has come for Geithner and his boss President Obama to admit that the bailout program has become a farce. There is little evidence that it ever accomplished the stated aim of freeing up lending.

    Whether or not the banks really needed the assistance in the first place is something that analysts will be debating for many years to come.

    The auto industry portion may have provided some breathing room for General Motors and Chrysler, but now it’s become clear that the real plan is to increase imports from low-wage countries such as China.
    Cod Liver Oil

  26. Rey Guerra, the former sheriff of Starr County, Texas, pleaded guilty May 1 to a narcotics conspiracy charge in federal district court in McAllen, Texas. Guerra admitted to using information obtained in his official capacity to help a friend (a Mexican drug trafficker allegedly associated with Los Zetas) evade U.S. counternarcotics efforts.


    For many years now, STRATFOR has followed developments along the U.S.-Mexican border and has studied the dynamics of the cross-border illicit flow of people, drugs, weapons and cash.


    In another interesting trend that has emerged over the past few years, as border security has tightened and as the flow of narcotics has been impeded, the number of U.S. border enforcement officers arrested on charges of corruption has increased notably. This increased corruption represents a logical outcome of the fluidity of the flow of contraband.
    Cartel Corruption

  27. You know you're a redneck when.......

    1. You take your dog for a walk and you both use the same tree.

    2. You can entertain yourself for more than 15 minutes with a fly swatter.

    3. Your boat has not left the driveway in 15 years.

  28. FBI officials were expected to announce the arrests Wednesday night.

    Rep. Peter King of New York, the senior Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, was briefed on the case following the arrests.

    "This was a long, well-planned investigation, and it shows how real the threat is from homegrown terrorists," said King.
    NYC Temple

  29. Oh my God, bob. I had no idea about your daughter. No idea. That's just horrific.

    Must be an awfully brave young woman not to have simply dug a hole, crawled down in, and stayed there.

  30. Vell, ican tel you dis-

    I can't stand old sporty Ash- giving us rubes the whatmore about medical stuff.

    Let that moron go to medical school his very self

    Vould u want to be client of old sporty ASH, when things get tough and serious, or would you rather have doctor at your side, for
    who has gone through the rigors, like say, medical school, that actually makes yor DO something,such stuff which ASH can't even imagined?

    I thougt so.




    you with your golf clubs and your sail boat

  33. Must have missed that one. That is horrible news, Bob.

  34. Its old time news to me, Sam.

    As her dad, I noiticed stuff.

    But, couldn't figure it out.

    She finally told her mom, who held it from me. Didn't want to talk about it to me.

    Very big change in behavior.

    Really big change in behavior.

    We all noticed.

    She didn't want to talk

    Then she cried. Told all.

    I respect that now.

    If that's what they want to do.

    Finally it came out.

    It's over now.

    I might have killed the little grimy bastard.

    If she had told me who he was.

    She had gone to the hospital, unknown to me.

    But, she didn't want to tell me about it.

    She didn't even know the guy. Happened on a street.

    They handeled it their own way. My wife and my daughter.

    It is not going to happen again.

  35. You know you're a redneck when........

    1. Check. She squats to pee, but spends plenty of time sniffing trees.

    2. Check. Plus I have a bug shooter, zeroed in at 12', including windage correction.

    3. Check. 27 years and counting. Still has the Arkansas plates and registration from dad's day. Too busy to take her out.

    Plus, 13 wheeled vehicles of one style or another, from tractors to flat beds to campers, coupes, sedans...parked among the trees. Awaiting the automotive museum, rise in scrap iron prices, Car Henge West, or combinations above. And one boat.

  36. I might have killed the little grimy bastard.

    If she had told me who he was

    There are those who have a real understanding of homicide and its motivations.

    Sorry to hear of her ordeal, bob.

  37. By the way Trish, I have almost finished "Ship of Fools".

    If you have not read that, I recommend it.

    Of course, knowing me, I'd recommend "Pale Rider, Pale Horse" with my interest in what happens to us.

    But she is a truly great writer.

    Some of it is so sad, like life itself, what can we do, she might say, but write about it, and try to make something about it.

    If I hadn't been such a fool, and if I had had a little money in my pocket, I might have gone tearing after one of these good writers in the Ph.d sort of way, and trying to make a book of it.

    Whitman was always my favorite.

    But, no talent, so, a little farming.

    Ha, got cha!--I haven't suffered--great wife, all that a sane man can hope for!

    But, I had to make a living.

    And, I love American Literature.

    They don't seem to teach it in the schools anymore.

    Which is why I have decided to give my California vote to Linear.

    He will have better sense.

  38. Bizarre coincidence, bob, and much, much further down the scale of ordeals, but my son and his friend just returned home from the theater. They were mugged at knife point.

    They found the police (not hard to do in our neck of the woods) who were very nice and drove them around looking for the guys, but no luck. Of course.

    Sometime I'll tell you about the recent weekend on which he came home seven hours late.

    My hair should be white by now.

  39. Krav Maga

    ...with all repect the krav maga really works i live in Bogota, Colombia and the krav maga technices save my life and my integrity many times.

    From comments at the link.