“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."

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Hackers Say Scientists Manipulating Data to Prove Global Warming

On December 7, world leaders will meet in Copenhagen to save planet Earth. President Hu Jintao of China and Barack Obama may not be there for the salvation effort. To the true believers there is only one man who can truly save the planet and of course that is Barack Obama.

The tension mounts.

Will Obama be able to hold himself off stage or will he relent and soothe the masses yearning for his leadership? What do you think? Is the lad capable of staying off that big carbon spewing 747?


  1. On December 7, world leaders will meet in Copenhagen to save planet Earth.

    A day that will live in infamy.

    The thing about theories, is that you never "prove" them like you would a proposition in geometry. You have a set of data, and you create a model that explains that data, and you use that model to predict new data. If the new data comes in and doesn't fit your model, then you start over.

    It's not an all-or-nothing, one time deal where you cross some hurdle, "prove" global warming, then relax as the grant money flows in. The fact that these emails were talking about ways to obfuscate the recent trend for cooling, which is based on a 30 year cycle called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (the same one that had Time and Newsweek decrying the immanent ice age back in 1977), means the data is NOT supporting the current trendy model. Science is self-correcting. Otherwise we'd be teaching phlogiston in high school physics.

  2. The strongest theory, right now, is that this was an "inside" job.

    It's figured that these emails were gathered together to be disposed of if a FOIA request from Canadian Statistician, Steve McIntyre was approved. The FOIA request was "turned down," and the emails, immediately, appeared.

    Heads will, almost certainly, roll.

    As one British Scientist put it: "This isn't a smoking gun; this is a machine gun nest."

  3. Wattsupwiththat has article after article about this.

    It is a Major scandal. It's going to bring down the entire "Global Warming" movement without a doubt.

    We knew they were manipulating data, hiding data, "controlling" the peer-review process, etc; but we couldn't prove it. Until now. It's, incredibly, all out in the open. Life is strange.

  4. And Albert Gore has made millions..

  5. Reportedly, a concensus seems to be growing on the right and left that the federal government is assuming too much power in the criminal justice system. A number of cases will be heard by the Supreme Court this year.

    Supreme Court Looks at Criminal Justice System

    I tend to go along with the more libertarian, Thomas/Scalia views on this subject as opposed to those of Roberts/Alito.

    One recent example is the proposed healthcare legislation in which it's been reported that if you don't buy healthcare insurance you will be fined and/or sent to jail. The idea being that this is the only way you can get the savings required to justify the system.

    It doesn't make since to me on two fronts.

    1. From the libertarian standpoint, I can't see how the government has the power to force anyone to buy insurance (please no specious arguments about having to buy auto insurance).


    2. At a cost of $40,000 per year to house a prisoner, wouldn't any savings for healthcare be offset by other costs?

    Just asking.

    Sounds like another accounting gimmick to justify the program and a corporate handout to the insurance industry to me.


  6. It's just a "Tax," Q; and the government has the authority to "Tax."

  7. Deep Fried Robot Chicken.
    Umm, umm, ummm!

  8. 1 in 4 mortgages 'underwater'

    NEW YORK ( -- In a sign that more foreclosures could be on the horizon, 23% of people with mortgages owe more than their home is worth, according to a report released Tuesday.

    Almost 10.7 million U.S. mortgages were "underwater" as of September, said research firm First American CoreLogic.

    Another 2.3 million homeowners are within 5% of negative territory, the report said. The two figures combined comprise almost 28% of all residential properties with mortgages.

    Negative equity, also called an "underwater" or "upside down" mortgage, has become more common as home values plummet. The report is closely watched because borrowers who are underwater are more likely to be foreclosed.

    Foreclosures have been rampant for some time, but lately the tide of decay had seemed to be slowing -- so Tuesday's report could dent optimism for the housing market over the next few months.

  9. Just a tax?

    That's just your opinion.

  10. Yeah, but it's going to be "just the court's opinion," too.

    7 - 2, I figure.

  11. It is an interesting legal issue - can the Federal government force you to buy something? Sure, if you drive a car, they can force you to buy insurance but can they say something like "if you use the healthcare system then you must be insured"... could you opt out of the "system"? I guess a defined system would have to be created before you could opt out of it...

    Heck, they should call a spade a spade and tax folk and create a universal system but the debate is so far away from that solution which makes many of us living with such systems laugh at the polemics going on in the US>

  12. It's just a "Tax," Q; and the government has the authority to "Tax."

    That sounds like "Newsspeak" to me Ruf.

    Exactly the point of the article I posted.

    1984 redux.

  13. Yeah, Whit:
    I think I deserve a share of your money in the form of a tax on your right to breathe in the same country as me.

  14. Anybody able to make sense out of string of words submitted by "Ash?"

  15. Uninsured people in the USA get as many cancer screenings as Canucks receive.

  16. "7 - 2, I figure."

    Like most decisions these days, I suspect it will be 5 - 4, one way or the other.

    What I was glad to see was the various groups, right and left concerned about the issue. I'll be watching this one.

    By the way, if you haven't read the article, it really doesn't involve the healthcare plan specifically.

  17. GOP Contract with America2 should be that everyone runs on repealing Obamacare before it gets started.

  18. Newspeak, Oldspeak, it doesn't matter, Q. That's what they'll call it; and that's what it'll be.

    We can't turn anyone away from our emergency rooms. They'll call That a "system."

    Think: Social Security. No, you Can't "opt out."

  19. The problem you have is that we have 30, or so, Million Americans without healthcare, at any given time (no, emergency room care is Not healthcare.)

    This is a large "voting bloc" that the Republicans want to "go away."

    I told you guys what it is going to cost you. At the end of the day it's going to cost about $5,000.00 apiece to insure these people. That's about $150 Billion/yr. Figure another $50 Billion for government inefficiency, and you're at around $200 Billion.

    The brunt of this cost will be borne by 100 million "taxpayers," so figure $2,000.00 apiece.

    Pony up, Buckos.

  20. It won't All come in the form of higher "taxes." Some of the cost will be in the form of higher insurance premiums. But, there are 100 pennies in a dollar, and the bill will be paid, somehow.

  21. "We can't turn anyone away from our emergency rooms. "

    As a consequence, most ERs in South LA have shut their doors, going broke servicing illegals.

    If Obamacare passes, Docs will go offshore to service those who will not submit to second class medicine.

    ...go to the Bahamas for your heart bypass!

  22. "It won't All come in the form of higher "taxes." Some of the cost will be in the form of higher insurance premiums."
    There will not be any Insurance Companies after a decade of "public option."

  23. On a lighter note:
    My recluse spider bite is almost completely healed, thanks to ignorance and DougCare.

  24. Doug

    that's Ash's way of taking another poke at the US. Or was it Rat? I get the two of them confused sometimes.....

  25. "Newspeak, Oldspeak, it doesn't matter, Q. That's what they'll call it; and that's what it'll be."

    So let it be written.

    So let it be done.

  26. The Superpatriot Confusion Conundrum.

  27. "I told you guys what it is going to cost you. At the end of the day it's going to cost about $5,000.00 apiece to insure these people."

    Do you pull these numbers out of your ass, Ruf, or are they from the CBO?

    If the latter, do you actually believe them?

    Then, if so, how long do you think they will be pertinent, before escalating towards infinity through the actions or inactions of Washington?

  28. Doug, I had a bite on the top of my foot where fortunately there is little flesh. I never saw what bit me but I felt the sting and the two-inch diameter wound took months to heal. Later, I concluded Brown Recluse.

  29. Teachers there must repudiate the notion of "the American Dream" in order to obtain the recommendation for licensure required by the Minnesota Board of Teaching.

    The first step toward "cultural competence," says the task group, is for future teachers to recognize -- and confess -- their own bigotry. Anyone familiar with the reeducation camps of China's Cultural Revolution will recognize the modus operandi.

  30. We are a nation of "victims" and "oppressors" Doug. And the "victims" are the good guys.

    Look inside yourself, recognize your bigotry, and confess.

    You'll feel better in the morning.

  31. Straight out of the old "Wazoo," Q.

    But, I'm pretty close. I did do that for several years, you know.

  32. How long do you think the gravy train will last?

  33. Montessori School Of Dentistry Lets Students Discover Their Own Root Canal

    NEW YORK—Inside the Montessori School of Dentistry, you won't find any old-fashioned cotton swabs, or so-called periodontal charts, or even any amalgam fillings.

    That's because at this alternative-learning institution, students are being encouraged to break away from medical tradition and discover their very own root canal procedures.

    "At Montessori, we believe dentistry is more than just the medical practice of treating tooth and gum disorders," school director Dr. Howard Bundt told reporters Tuesday.
    "It's about fostering creativity. It's about promoting self-expression and individuality. It's about looking at a decayed and rotten nerve pulp and drawing your own unique conclusions."

    "In fact, here at Montessori, dentistry is whatever our students want it to be," Bundt continued.

  34. Damn, I got's to get me one of them dendists.

  35. Doug's "Theater of the Absurd."

    Honestly, the off the grid, back country is looking better and better these days. One of the main drawbacks is that an infected hangnail could wind up killing you although, veterinary medical supplies could be relatively inexpensive.

  36. Obama, and health care numbers continue to tank. Obama "disapproval" index now -15. Healthcare reform 38%.


  37. Or, one of them dentists.

  38. It's not that big of a thing, Whit. We can afford to send the poor folks to the Doctor.

  39. Yeah? To the tune of another trillion dollars over the next decade at a time when our projected debt will be 200% of our GDP. (And that doesn't begin to cover the unfunded liabilities of social security and medicare.)

    The jig is up. Japan's debt is currently at 2.5 times their GDP and word is they're insolvent. BROKE. Just like us....

  40. Wait until the bite of a devalued dollar and higher taxes begin to kick in. The debt service on what we owe China is $800 billion per year...

  41. Whit, don't get your financial news from Glen Beck. The Chinese own about $800 Billion in U.S. Bonds, and Notes. The Debt service on that is about $40 Billion.

    The Government, after all the bailouts, stimulii, etc, only spent $3.3 T last year. During a "Normal" economy we would have taken in $2.7 T, or so. Take away the bailouts, stimulii, etc this year, and we'll probably spend $3.0 to $3.1 T. Next year, let's say we spend $3.2 T, and the economy has "recovered." Tax receipts should be in the $3.0 to $3.1 range.

    Hell, we could even be looking at a "balanced" budget in 2011. Take it all with a "grain of salt," Big Boy.

  42. Look, the "giveaway" is the interest rate on the 10 yr. Bond. It's bopping around, what? 3.4% - 3.5%? The folks that move a lot of money are looking at "business as usual."

    "Unfunded" liabilities are NOT "Liabilities." They are "Thoughts" that haven't been Changed, yet.

  43. Should there be criminal implications tied to the AGW scandal? After all we are talking $ billions in grants given to these clowns and $ trillions in potential costs associated with their deception.

    (I'm not dumb enough to think it would happen but it would be cool)

    The Fix is In


  44. "Hell, we could even be looking at a "balanced" budget in 2011. Take it all with a "grain of salt," Big Boy."

    Barkeep, I have whatever Rufus is drinking.

  45. :)

    Admittedly, I'd put that one in the "longshot" category.

  46. But, we've seen all this stuff, before. The Politicians, and the CBO have been Spectacularly wrong more than once.

    Remember, before the S hit the F Bush was within the cost of the war of having a balanced budget, and Clinton achieved it with the same taxation scheme that Obama's putting in.

  47. Other than being in recession the country hasn't changed all that much since then.

  48. Okay, I screwed up on the Chinese numbers but do you honestly believe there's a snowball's chance of a balance budget in 2011?

  49. The difference this time is that our banking system is on life support. Our credit system is shot but there's no real demand for it anyway.

    Unemployment has gone structural rather than simply being cyclical. Those jobs aren't coming back.

    The public is saddled with debt. A large portion of our economy, construction, is for all practical purposes, gone....

    It will take a while to work this off and piling on additional debt will only make it that much more difficult if it's not already an impossibility.

  50. It's a recession, Whit. It Was a crisis; now it's a "recession." The Banking System is okay.

    A Lot of the jobs lost during "Any" recession never come back.

    Re: Schumpeter's "Gales of Creative Destruction." That's what recessions do in a "free market" economy. They wash away the inefficiencies, and obsolete jobs.

    We got carried away building houses for people that couldn't afford them. It bit us in the ass. Just like it was supposed to. Now, we move on. I think we'll end up building an ethanol refinery in every county. That'll put some folks to work. We'll start working with "biomass," and "waste" cellulose.

    Maybe we'll build some of those lithium ion batteries in the U.S. As the price of oil/transportation increases we might return to building some of the heavier, lower value added products, like furniture, in he U.S. Who knows? We'll find "something" to make a buck. We always have.

  51. "Remember, before the S hit the F Bush was within the cost of the war of having a balanced budget,..."

    Of course I remember, Ruf. Before we got kicked off Kudlow's, that was your mantra. You were throwing out numbers the same as now and predicting a balanced budget. It didn't happen. And there we were talking about billions. Now we are talking about trillions.

    Another suggestion. Take a lesson from Gore and the Global Warming guys. Project catastrophes or nirvana 100 years out. That way you've got wiggle room. (If we don't get global warming its because of the actions we put in place. If we do get global warming, it's because we didn't act fast enough and with enough resources. It's a no-lose proposition.)

    Stick to the "peak oil" meme, Ruf. Either you will eventually be proved right or if wrong it will be so far out no one will remember you were wrong.

    Predicting a balanced budget by 2011? Hell, even given the average age of people at the EB we'll be able to remember that.


  52. Q, if you'll remember, I predicted this recession way before anyone else. I predicted rising oil prices when oil was at $50.00, and drove Kudlow crazy. When the White HOuse said the Budget Deficit would be $390 Billion, I said it would be $170 Billion. I hit it on the nose.

    I've never been afraid to make a prediction. BUT, I've left myself some wiggle-room on this one. I said we "Could" be balanced. I THINK we'll be in the $200 - $300 range. Still, 2% of GDP is manageable (especially, when you print your own money, and borrow in THAT fiat currency.)

    All I'm saying is, DON'T get your economic lessons from Fox News (or, CNBC, either, for that matter.) Recessions happen. Watch the 10 yr Bond. It'll tell you most of what you want to know.

  53. Here you go:

  54. And, I should be proven right on my Peak Oil Theory by sometime in 2011. 2012 by the latest. If I'm not proven prescient by then, I'll accept that I got that one wrong.

    (like hell I will. heh, heh)

  55. And, before El Dougo jumps in and starts hammering me, I Did NOT see the "Crisis" coming.

    I thought we had a "garden variety" recession on the way; I did not see the "end of the world" scenario unfolding. Mea Culpa.

  56. "Q, if you'll remember, I predicted this recession way before anyone else...When the White HOuse said the Budget Deficit would be $390 Billion, I said it would be $170 Billion. I hit it on the nose..."

    As I recall, it was Cinefoz that called it first in the 4th Qtr, 2007 based on falling copper and the dollar/yen exchange rate. Don't recall when you called it.

    Don't recall the $170 billion call only the "could have a balanced budget call". Of course, I was only there on a spotty basis near the end. (And I've noticed my memory isn't quite as good as it used to be.)

    "I THINK we'll be in the $200 - $300range..."

    And I THINK you're wildly optimistic. Luckily, it is only two years out. We'll see.


  57. The conga line is, among other things, a symbol of...let me put this carefully...something going in the complete opposite direction of one's expectations.

  58. In an untroubled and joyful manner.

  59. The Summer of 2007, I believe. I called it when the unemployment rate went to 4.9% That was up .5% from the 4.4% low. The unemployment rate has never moved 0.5% from the low without an immediate follow-on recession.

    My back-up was falling tax receipts in the summer of 2007.

    Whether I was first, or second to Cinefoz is pretty unimportant. He was/is a very astute observer of economics, and the markets. I'd take being a "close-second" to him, Anytime.

    I probably Am being wildly optimistic in light of my worries over energy prices. I really hate to say it, but the most likely scenario is probably a double-dip recession, and a continuation of deficits of Biblical proportions.

    Oh well, I've used enough "weasel" phrases by now to explain anything from the Lions winning the Super Bowl, to an invasion of alien space-monkeys. :)

    Economiks is eezy.

  60. In my limited experience, with conga lines, they always move in an untroubled and joyful manner. Without a thought that becomes a directive, with regards to direction.

    It seems metaphorical to the endless party, from this perspective.

    Las Vegas on an expense account with no downside risk at the blackjack tables.

  61. Easy on the Lions. It's a very touchy subject around here.

    With regard to the other, smaller stuff, I don't doubt you at all. As I said my memory ain't what it used to be.

    (Especially regarding the small stuff.)

  62. "It seems metaphorical to the endless party..."

    Were that it were so.

    The story behind the conga line is a simple one.

    None of us really wanted to go (it WAS a working night) and each of us was looking forward to it only for its end. Merciful brevity was in fact promised.

    As it turned out, it was marvelously, stunningly, enjoyably memorable.

    It was the thing unexpected.

  63. what, South America, and the party wouldn't be good?

  64. South America doesn't really have anything to do with it. (Okay, it does. Just not in the way that you think.)

    There are lousy, lamented social occasions down here just like everywhere else.

    Again, it was the thing unexpected.

  65. heh, a party with workmates...


  66. As one British Scientist put it: "This isn't a smoking gun; this is a machine gun nest."


    I was kind of a warmer, there for awhile. It seems so sensible, when we're pouring mega mega mega tons of stuff into the air every day. And, the atmosphere is very thin, really.

    Then I started reading contra arguments and became more or less convinced that our science just isn't up to it yet. We don't know enough, we don't have enough data, etc.

    Then when you read about manipulating data, well, hell, you don't know what to think.

    Build nuclear power plants!

    Rufus, I'm not sure what's going on down there in south Idaho with the proposed nuke plant. The e-mailed newsletters have been few and far between for quite a while now.

    Not sure where it's at.

  67. Is there actually enough population density to warrant the capital cost of a nuke plant in that area?

  68. Ash, you have shown some glimmering of comprehension about the Constitution at Tue Nov 24, 10:34:00 AM EST.

    The answer to your question of can they force you to buy something should be No.

    Our Constitution is a dying document. They might well get away with it.

    These things should properly be left to the states, and even better, to the private market place.

    When we can't even get a decent court hearing about Article 2 Section 1 Constitutionalists are in a bad way. We can't get even a decent well thought out definition of what is a NBC.

    Well, Ash, one of these days, when older, and when you are really sick, and you are in bed there, needing a transplant of this or that, and the Canadian Health Board is stroking its beard, and wondering whether you are really worth it, your option of coming to the States, on you own dime, well, it won't be there at all.

    At that point, you crock.

  69. I think that's the "feature," not the "bug," Ash.

  70. Yes, I think there is, in a way, as the juice would be sent out all over.

    There's not that many people in Elmore County, but over towards Boise, and all these other places, getting to be quite a few folks around.

    A nuke plant isn't going to be built in the middle of Seattle.

    If it can't get built in south Idaho, I guess it can't get built at all.

    The resistance of the power lines puts some limits on how far you can send the juice, not being an electrical engineer, I don't have an informed opinion about that.

    What I've read though, is that the intention is, to export the power to the surrounding states, as well as light up most of Idaho.

    I get my juice from the dams, I doubt I'd be getting juice from south Idaho.

    I don't think these guys are frauds, or bullshiters, after all they've put hundreds of thousands of dollars into the effort, and to what reward, so far?

    I just don't know where it stands, right now.

  71. I've been told that the transmission loss is quite significant. Quite a bit less bang for your buck, now if there are subsidies being considered...

  72. Well, the whole thing is a good question.

    Out here, we have this big argument about how the dams have destroyed the rivers.

    It's true, too, the enviros are right, the salmon and steelhead just don't come back, like they used to do.

    My dead Unca Ed, best fisherman I ever knew, can testify to that.

    "Bob, you've missed the great steelhead fishing, but I can show you how to work some of these smaller streams, for trout"

    What I don't get is, why not take the dams out, as the enviros want to do, put in some nuke plants where the dams are, restore the rivers, and the fish runs?

    This might raise the temperature of the water maybe one degree.

    I don't think it would make much difference, and the fish would be much better off.

    They'd have that old free ride down to Portland, as they used to have, rather than having to work they way down, past all the predators.

    But, the enviros are againt nuke plants.

    We got to get our energy somewhere.

    We can't go back to living in huts, with whale oil light. They'd be bitching about that, too.

    We'd be back to "Save The Whales"

  73. Basically, I like a light switch.

  74. "My dead Unca Ed, best fisherman I ever knew, can testify to that."

    I think that probably should read "could testify to that".


  75. heh,

    You're write about that!

  76. The proper use of language should make it read "could have testified about that".

    I think.

    Anyway, that's what he'd say, if he were here to say anything.

  77. He gave me one time, a bamboo fly rod, for steelhead fishing.

    These can be, and this one is, a real work of art.

    I've not used it much, it's rather kind of a keepsake.

    This is not your ordinary fly rod, but a big sucker.

    Not your little river deal, but made for the big churning rivers, like the Grand Rhonde.

    No bait thrown out, on the end of this baby, but rather your red and black fly, maybe a little smaller that your little finger, heavy, quickly sinking, get out way over there, and make it sink, down where they are relaxing.

    There is one guy around here that still makes them. Hand crafted. It's an art, really.

  78. This is a search engine where you can both search and browse the emails and documents from the Climate Research Unit.
    We citizen journalists can do our part and dig through the emails and send them to blogs where they can be posted.

    This is the job the media that lives in the Universe of Lies will never do.
    - Limbaugh

  79. "Is there actually enough population density to warrant the capital cost of a nuke plant in that area?"
    The whole thing is a sham.
    Real intent is to bring in enough money and power to effect a resurgence of the annual
    Potatoe Festivale
    where retired whacked out farmers can ply their conspiracy theories on an unwitting populace of witless, inbred Swedes.

  80. Is it true that Kosher Fishermen use foreskins for bait?

  81. This comment has been removed by the author.

  82. It has been really fun to fish these rivers.

    And to talk to some of the other guys, and gals, now too, about it.

    Some of these gals have taken up the sport.

    When my wife and I were heading down to McCall, Boise, and over to Twin Falls, we stopped to rest at a rest area, before you get to Riggins, there on the Salmon, big river.

    When I came out of the pisser, having relieved myself, this lady, maybe thirty something, asked me if I would take her picture, with her camera.

    Big steelhead rod in her left hand, heavy, heavy steelhead in her right hand, hard to hold, blood dripping, down its sides, from where she had just gutted it, the good kind of old rubber boots on her legs, up to her waist, the kind that keep you warm and dry, I took her picture.

    We exchanged a few words, her dog sniffed my legs.

    If you really get to know these rivers, you can do some good.

    But nowadays, you mostly have to work at it.

    A secret: these fish are mostly lazy bastards, they aren't going to expend protein if they don't have to.

    Sink the fly there.

    Where they are relaxing.

  83. New Dem plan for Afganistan.

    Now it was pulled together by David Obey, Charlie Rangel, and John Murtha. Any idea what it involves?

    Surtax to Pay for War Effort


  84. Obey says surtax is needed because the cost of the war might inhibit the "other things we want to do."

    I guess the question then becomes what is it we "want to do" that is more important than giving the military we are sending over to fight for us with whatever they need to do the job.

  85. The old Royal Coachman was the big fly, back in the past, al-Doug.

    Not sure if it was Kosher or not, but it was built of some white up at the top, then some red, a little grey or black, then a little more white towards the bottom.

    It's kind of gone out of style now, for some reason, I don't know why, I doubt the fish have changed their dietary habits much.

    You can't find a Royal Coachman now. I've looked.

    It was the old standby fly my Unca Ed used.

    You could use it for the big steelhead, if you were fishing the big version, or on smaller rivers, for trout.

    A steelhead is just a trout, gone to sea, and back.

    Amazing, big suckers.

  86. I should make clear, there have been some disputes, in the learned journals, that I used to read, journals written by your average guy out here, about just what a "Royal Coachman" really is.

    After considering this topic, and using my best judgement, and all my past experience, my best reply is

    "You'll know one if you see one"

    There was a fellow named Walton that wrote a good book about fishing and stuff, back in England, some centuries ago.

  87. It is my high and learned opinion, of sound and experienced judgement, that anyone that uses bait is nothing but a pisser

  88. Even I recall the Royal Coachman.

    Probly lost favor due to reference to the Royals.

    We've entered a new era of cult-worship, so we'll no doubt see the "Royal Obama" any time now.

  89. al-doug Here Is A Reprentention Of The Royal Coachman

    I'm not sure if I'm going for this, it's not quite the way I remember it.

    However, the article also mentions a "Royal Humpy" which I'd be damned fool, not to put on the end of my pole.

  90. If it is worth having the military there, Quirk, it is worth paying the taxs to fund them.

    If it is not worth citizens funding the effort in Afpakistan, then it is certainly not worth spilling the blood of the military, there, either.

  91. Don't we still pay a tax on our landline that was passed to finance the Spanish-American War?

  92. Dubbed the “Share the Sacrifice Act,” the six-page bill exempts anyone who has served in Iraq or Afghanistan since the 2001 terrorist attacks as well as families who have lost an immediate relative in the fighting. But middle-class households earning between $30,000 and $150,000 would be asked to pay 1% on top of their tax liability today — a more sweeping approach than many Democrats have been willing to embrace.

  93. "If it is worth having the military there, Quirk, it is worth paying the taxs to fund them."

    No problem with the tax if the decision is made to keep the troops there. As I mentioned in the post above, there is nothing more important than giving these guys whatever they need if we are going to sent them into harms way.

    However, my problem is with the implied ratioanale from Obey. Basically, that the war is an inconvenience when they have other things they want to accomplish. Where has this fiscal sanity been for the past year?


  94. This is not about fiscal sanity, it's about ending the war.

  95. More taxes right now can hardly qualify as fiscal sanity.

  96. My objection to the tax is mainly associated with Obey's rationale for it.

    Frankly, the tax might make sense in that it would make clear to the country the actual cost of war as opposed to the sterilized view we have right now; however, there is no way this will ever pass.

    The GOP will be against it because it is pretty progressive, and the Dems will never get enough of their own people to vote for it.

    Looks like a publicity stunt to me.


  97. It is a question of priorities, that is for certain.

    The Dems had always opposed tax cuts and war spending going hand in hand. At least during the Bush tenure.

    They can hardly expand the Afpakistan front and not raise taxes, if they are true to their previous positions.

    If Afpakistan effort is "worth it" to the loyal opposition, how can the taxes increases be denied?

    Even Mr Reagan could not swim against the spending tide, but was swept along.
    And Obama is no Reagan.

  98. It does seem to throw down the gauntlet to those who scream "No to cut and run, taxes, and big government." You can see Quirk squirming already.

  99. I think I've got to come down in favor of the bill.

    We've got a War.

    We've got a Deficit,

    and maybe the 1% will remind people that "Governments doing things" costs money.

  100. "If Afpakistan effort is "worth it" to the loyal opposition, how can the taxes increases be denied?"

    I agree, especially since it's the GOP that is really pushing for the troop increase. The Bush practice of pushing through off budget special authorizations to fund the Iraq/Afgan wars was a farce.

    However, I'm saying that this is a publicity stunt because, in my opinion, it will never happen.

    Afgan War Surcharge

    "The basic structure of the surtax is to create three brackets based on the current tax liability for joint or single returns.

    The first bracket, which covers joint returns with a liability of up to $22,600, roughly corresponds with households earning up to $150,000. In this case a 1 percent surtax is levied so the maximum additional cost would be $226.

    The second bracket applied to tax liability between $22,600 and $36,400 or roughly equivalent to joint returns for couples earning between $150,000 to $250,000, The third bracket applies to those earning over $250,000 with a tax liability of $36,400 or higher.

    The rates in the second and third brackets would vary depending on how much needs to be raised to cover the prior year’s war expenditures. But as a rule, the added surtax above $250,000 would be twice the percentage added onto taxes incurred between $150,000 and $250,000.

    If the costs were $68 billion, a preliminary rough breakdown provided by Obey’s office indicates that about $8.8 billion in surtax revenues would come from the first bracket, $9.7 billion from the second, and then $28.2 billion from the third."

    As I stated in a previous post, the GOP will be against it because of the progressive nature of the tax with the top 10% of taxpayers paying 60% of the surcharge. They will argue it on the basis of "fairness" if the intent of the surtax is to really "Share the Sacrifice." And they oppose it on the basis of the "getting blood from a turnip" meme. After all, it will be that same group that picks up a 5.4% surcharge on Obamacare and will be hurt the most when the Dems let taxes go back up in 2011. I suspect the GOP would be glad to use the surtax as a bargaining chip on some of the other legislation they are arguing about; either that, or continue to brand the Dems as the party of tax and spend. However, I don't think it will come to that because of the Dems themselves.

    While Rufus is sanguine about paying an extra 1% surtax (or an extra $2k for healthcare, etc.) many people won't be. Plus there is a large portion of the American public that wants us out of Afganistan now. A good portion of them make up Obama's base and they will be upset enough when the Big O tells them he is sending an additional 34k troops to Afgan. Asking them to pay a surcharge for it will add insult to injury.

    Add to that, the fact that the Dems know that unless they get the economy growing and create some jobs before the 2010 elections that they will get burned and I don't think they will be putting out any tax increases any time soon.

    Should we pay for our wars. Of course. Should we have some sort of tax to pay for it? I think I said that in a previous post. Will it happen? I don't think so.

    Perhaps you have more faith in these clowns to do the right thing than I do. I wouldn't mind being proved wrong (although I'd still complain about the priorities the Dems have set).

    We'll see.

  101. "You can see Quirk squirming already."

    Another squeak from mini-Rat?

  102. I wouldn't mind paying some more taxes to support the troops. After all, that's one of the big things the Constitution seems to be about.

    In December, I have to make a decision as to whether or not to go ahead with my development. Seems I've already made the decision, as it really comes down to a choice of pouring more money into my civil engineer, or giving the money to Obama. As I have some capital gains to report, and need the write off.

    So I'll prebably go ahead with the development, even though al-Doug's advice was "do not do that".

    I'd rather just be able to write a check to some general in the military. If he was a good general, and the money really did go to the troops.

    These days, I pay something like forty percent of my total income to some government, local, state, or federal. Probably more than that, with the sales taxes.

    Talk about socialsim, we'
    ve got it now.

    There comes a point when it just seems isn't worth it. Better to be on the government dole, oneself, or have a job in the government.

    This statement will inevitably be munched, crunched by the mouth of some bad breathed, yellow teethed rat somewhere.

    But, it's the reality of my current life. I've a date with my accountant next week, to talk things over, and make a decision.

    I'd rather just send a check to the general, and take the wife to Hawaii.

    This statement is an example of why I should stick to the old theme of melody, and song.

  103. Bob.

    If you've anything to part with, send it to a veterans' rehabilitation foundation.

    Or a pet rescue.

    ...I can think of any number of things, if you're looking to do immediate good.

    Other than putting your name on a bomb. Which all of us long to do, now and again.

    And some of us have.

  104. Or Lutheran. Whatever Lutheran ordinance delivery calls for.

  105. heh, Trish, I've always liked the pictures of some of our ladies writing a sign off on the bombs, as they are loaded up.

    I guess I shouldn't say this, as I can't find a reference to it in the troubador, minnesinger tradition.

  106. Oh, they've been signed by women.

    NOT as a comment on the opposite species.

    I don't think.

  107. At the time that the high European cathedrals were going up, a part of the society was thinking in another way.

    The Catholic Church, the bastards, wiped out a real movement of this sort, in southern France.

    The tradition lives on today, in a few hearts, here and there, and in a major way in our popular music.

    I can't get this post right, for some reason.

    I have tried to post about the minnesingers, and the Cathars, and the Albeginian Crusade.

    Can't make it go through.

    The tradition that was being aborned, generally had the male singing to the woman, though in an unusual case, the opposite.

    The point of it seemed to be, that in love's ecstacy, often expressed in sex, but not always, and in the inevitability of death, the crashing down of the whole damned thing, something higher was being expressed.

    I think it's probably the highest point of European life.

    Some of these people really had good manners

  108. O Melody!

    My Superheroine!

  109. This old tradition lives on out here among some of us white farmers, where we always refer to the wife as our better half.

    You won't find this among the generality of muzzies, where they think the woman less than half

    I've heard of some exceptions, but it's damned rare.

  110. Well, boobie, I've been saying we have a Socialist Government for ages, you have disagreed, with venom often enough.

    Full speed a head, bob, full speed a head.

    Cut that check to the engineer.
    Borrow the money for the infrastructure build out.

    Please do!
    Make my day!

  111. Love to see you move forward as a real estate developer, your constant babble about how we are on the edge of destruction will be proven to be the partisan ploy that it appears to be, if you step up and invest in the infrastructure required.

    You will be voting with your wallet, for Obama.
    I just gotta say one thing,

    "Go for it!"

  112. This comment has been removed by the author.

  113. Prove to us all you are a liar.

    Prove to us all that you do not believe that Obama's economic policies will drive US into bankruptcy, as a Nation.

    That even a bobal can invest and prosper, moving in the economic direction that has been charted for Obamamarica!

  114. Prove to US all that higher taxes really do spur investment!

    As you are say that paying taxes will have that effect, in your situation.

  115. Rat, you are, really, crazy as hell.

    Now you are back to calling names.

    None of that made a goddamn bit of sense.

    I'm goin' back to bed.

    And, I'll never interspeak with you again.

    20 to 1, you'd be outta here, if deuce would let us do it.

    Which I wish he would.

  116. He's a valued member of the Bar.

  117. Never is a long, long time, boobie.

    You've always failed, to maintain the level of discipline required to hold your tongue, in the past.

    You will fail in the future, too.