“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."

Friday, August 07, 2009

“A man's tie should never be louder than his wife.”-John Hughes, quieted.


  1. Having a nice weekend with or without the wife:

    "Rielle Hunter, John Edwards' former girlfriend, left the federal courthouse in Raleigh this evening after nine hours with federal investigators.
    Hunter left at 5:40 p.m. with her daughter - Frances Quinn Hunter - an unidentified man, and two federal agents.
    A federal grand jury is investigating whether Edwards misused campaign funds as hush money for Hunter."

  2. Who'd have guessed?

    Aug. 7 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama may accept nonprofit health-insurance cooperatives in place of a new government-run plan as long as consumers are guaranteed more choice and competition in buying insurance, a top aide said.

  3. By MarketWatch HONG KONG (MarketWatch) -- China Investment Corp., the mainland's sovereign wealth fund, reported Friday in its first-ever annual report that its global investment portfolio suffered a loss of 2.1%, according to a report by Xinhua News ...

  4. LONDON, Aug 7 (Reuters) - NATO's new secretary-general made a direct call for more troops in Afghanistan on Friday and said training of Afghan forces also needed to be escalated.

    Waist Deep in the Big Muddy

  5. Just saw a banner, on MSNBC, saying the AFL-CIO will be sending a contingent to all of these Town Hall meetings, from here on out.

    Things are going to get fiesty.

  6. Nothing like a good old fashion revolt. I have been around Teamsters and AFL-CIO types all my life. They are a bunch of pussies. No problem.

  7. Hot Air » Blog Archive » St. Louis town hall Protesters locked out while SEIU is admitted Update “These Members need cover”

    Update: Amanda Carpenter e-mails to point me to Health Care for America Now’s playbook on how to counter conservative protesters at town halls. The money bit:
    Another one of Ms. Jorge’s tips is to “Address the [member of Congress] directly with a positive message: Remember, these Members need cover and they are getting beaten up by right wing zealots in these meetings.”
    HCAN Communications Director Jacki Schechner said protecting elected officials who support their favored reforms was necessary given the contentious nature of some town-hall meetings.
    Ms. Schechner said conservatives are baiting lawmakers into holding town-hall meetings, “so [lawmakers] can get yelled at and they don’t want to feel unsafe and uncomfortable.”
    Stacking the audience with friendly SEIU members in lieu of ObamaCare naysayers surely qualifies as providing “cover.” Fun fact: One of the organizations on HCAN’s steering committee is, you guessed it, SEIU.

  8. Posted @ BC
    40. Foul Harold:
    Ordinary people are fed up.
    YouTube - No jobs= No recovery

  9. ...and all this time Viktor's been telling us he's in Canada!

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. This is a Most Amazing "Good News" story that caught me Completely Flat-footed.

    Farmers "Quietly Build 1500 Ethanol "Stills"

    These small refineries range from 10,000 gallons to 500,000 Gallons/Yr.

    Talk about "Flying Under the Radar!"

    We could, easily, have 150 Thousand of these.

  12. Combine this news with the Buick announcement of a Plug-in Hybrid, with an advanced Flexfuel Engine, and the Sauds, and the Rockefeller family can "kiss my rusty red Mississipp Ass."

  13. Knew an old boy from TN, he had a distillery, but he made drinkin' lickor with it.

    That was thirty some years ago, so the simple technology, ain't much to it.

    Country boys will survive, them city slickers, they're gonna need some mercy, I do believe.

  14. Michigan Legislature Rep. Arlan Meekhof has introduced legislation that would allow small biofuels plants to operate, so long as not more than 100,000 gallons of ethanol or other fuels are produced annually.

    The proposed legislation also would require such plants to operate on land not adjacent to residential-zone districts, and would make it a "right in any agricultural district" to operate ethanol plants, so long as several requirements are met.

    If the bill becomes law, the 200,000-gallon Rasch plant would be allowed to apply for a special land-use permit to exceed the 100,000-gallon limit

  15. I tried to tell that farmer from Idaho that teaming with the University and switching from alfalfa to sweet sourgham with a localized distillery was the way to get an annuity income from his poorly irrigated farmland.

    Decided to go into the McMansion business, instead.

    So goes America.
    Leaving generations of experience at what works, and diving headlong into the "easy money" of the other fellow's area of expertise.

    When the way forward was in tweaking the production, creating a niche product and gaining a Federal Energy/Farm subsidy.

    That particular Idaho farm always being a Federally and locally subsidized project. From the initial land grant, to the County Extension Agents and the favorable local property tax rates for farmland.

    Should have embraced the lands' heritage, not rejected it for dreams of white picket fences and easy money.

  16. Has anyone noticed it's Friday?

    G_d (h/t allen) gave us Fridays so we could all say, "And? Who gives a fuck?"

  17. Friday? Feels like Saturday...

    Sudden cold weather here, snow down to 8,000 feet, another three dog night.

    Joy to the Whirled--

  18. Colombians get a jump on that by one day, which is not covered in the Good Book but nevertheless something in their favor.

  19. Marine Happy Hour begins in three hours. Depending upon your time zone, of course.

  20. Did anyone else encounter a "problem" with google. I couldn't access any blogspots for awhile.

  21. Today is a special day...

    And this day is about Jimmy Carter...

    Jimmy Carter is felling happy and wonderful...

    For today....

    It's official...

    He's not the.........

    Worst President of America, ever anymore....

    Congrats to Jimmy " the dhimmi" Carter

  22. "The White House is in bit of a conundrum because of this privacy statute that prohibits the White House from collecting data and storing it on people who disagree with it," Judge Andrew Napolitano, a FOX News analyst, said Friday.

    "There's also a statute that requires the White House to retain all communications that it receives. It can't try to rewrite history by pretending it didn't receive anything," he said.

    "If the White House deletes anything, it violates one statute. If the White House collects data on the free speech, it violates another statute."

    Napolitano was referring to the Privacy Act of 1974, which was passed after the Nixon administration used federal agencies to illegally investigate individuals for political purposes

    White House Move to Collect 'Fishy' Info May Be Illegal, Critics Say

  23. trish,

    ...from me (and maybe the Big Guy)...


    Shabbat Shalom!

  24. Yeah. There's still no forgiving your decent weather and time at the shore.

  25. Johnny Cash - Wabash Cannonball.



    Oh listen to the jingle
    The rumble and the roar
    As she glides along the woodlands
    Through the hills and by the shores
    Hear the mighty rush of engines
    Hear the lonsome hobos' call
    We're travelling through the jungles
    On the Wabash Cannonball


  26. It is Friday. But, I usually don't need an excuse to say, "And? Who gives a fuck?"

    That mixed with happy hour is a cure all for any frustrating day.

  27. Washington Post - Zachary A. Goldfarb, Ben Pershing - ‎34 minutes ago‎
    The Senate Ethics Committee on Friday dismissed complaints against Sens. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) and Kent Conrad (DN.D.) that they used their positions of power to obtain special deals on home loans from ..

    Right now, it's Dylan and the Band, at the Last Waltz.

    May you stay, forever young.

  28. New York Daily News - Tracy Connor - ‎1 hour ago‎
    Hyperactive pitchman Billy Mays used cocaine days before his heart attack - and it killed him, officials said Friday. Mays, 50, suffered from heart disease but his drug use contributed to his June 28 death, the Hillsborough County ...

  29. Especially when that day ends in a missed call.

  30. When scientists run amok...

    ...The "cloud ships" are favoured among a series of schemes aimed at altering the climate which have been weighed up by a leading think-tank

    The project, which is being worked on by rival US and UK scientists, would see 1,900 wind-powered ships ply the oceans sucking up seawater and spraying minuscule droplets of it out through tall funnels to create large white clouds

    'Cloud ship' scheme to deflect the sun's rays is favourite to cut global warming .


  31. I also thought Fridays were for talking about things other than, well...politics.

  32. Doug said...
    ...and all this time Viktor's been telling us he's in Canada!

    Fri Aug 07, 11:13:00 AM

    Doug, have mercy on an old man. I don't understand the reference.

    However, thank you from the bottom of my heart for the link "YouTube - No jobs= No recovery".

    After I clicked on it, my computer crashed.
    This was bad timing as I was just about finished translating War and Peace into Urdu. The whole file was up. Sixty years of work. (Started when I was 11) Now it's gone. Vanished into the ether.

    This does not augur well for the weekend.

    What say you?

  33. Bob just emailed.

    "Tell MLD I called."

  34. Oh, you want to laugh, and watch poor old Bob bleeding on the floor as Rat beats him with stats, and numbers?

    Shame on you.


  35. Tell Bob, I miss him. Even though, I don't comment here, because I really do hate politics, I do stop by every day to catch up on the daily news, and really enjoy listening to him.

    And on nights like tonight, I can always depend on him to humor me.

    I guess you really don't have to tell him, I'm sure he's stalking on his own.

  36. The infrastructure build out report I've got, rufus, gives the cost of the infrastructure by the foot, in 2004 dollars.

    Looks to be about ten bottles of $30 wine per foot of infrastructure. Just to start.

  37. missed calls or missed callings are better un-missed.

  38. It's all about timing. Maybe, I'll get lucky next time.

  39. I'm sure you could make something out of it.

  40. This comment has been removed by the author.

  41. "Doug, have mercy on an old man. I don't understand the reference."
    Fess up, Viktor, we know that's you!

    Can't be blamed after what happened to your Urdu.

  42. I went over to BC just to check out Foul Harold and do you know, Doug? I like that boy! He's got major grit.

    However, Doug, old buddy, old pal, I see you've got a video up too. I am Gunnery Sgt. Doug Hartman

    Don't try to deny it. Fess up!!

  43. Little wonder, doug, that after 70 years of that kind of cultural input that steroid use is as rampant as it seems to be.

    Along with the Cap'n America saga.

    It's all about the proper mixture and dosage, don't you know.

  44. Better living through chemistry.

    Published: August 7, 2009

    WASHINGTON — Senator Mel Martinez, Republican of Florida, abruptly announced his resignation on Friday, saying he would step down as soon as Gov. Charlie Crist named a replacement, presumably before Congress returns from its summer recess after Labor Day.

    Mr. Crist, a Republican who announced in May that he would run for Mr. Martinez’s seat, is now in the awkward position of selecting someone to finish Mr. Martinez’s term. At a news conference in Tampa, Mr. Crist said that the search for a replacement would begin immediately and that he would not appoint himself.

    Mr. Martinez said he was in good health and was resigning to return to private life and spend time with his family.

    “This is of my own free will,” Mr. Martinez said, his wife, son and daughter standing behind him at the airport news conference. “There is no impending reason, only my desire to move on and get on with the rest of my life.”

  46. Has 2164th lost his sharp tongue since he is concert meister and no longer posts at the Belmont?

  47. Boy, you guys sure know how to party.


  48. It WAS a great party, viktor, just not here. I'm not a regular here but I stop by every once in a while to stir things up. I usually get a better response but, I guess everyone is still mourning over the fact the Bob left.