“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."

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Family members leaning on one another for support

Vickers and his family pose for a photo last Christmas. Clockwise from left, Vickers, Noah Kala‘i Vickers, Nani Vickers, Malie Vickers, dog Honey Girl and Lisa Makahea Flores.

Maui native Kraig Vickers, a Navy explosive ordnance disposal specialist who died in combat, shows off his fun side while holding his children, Noah Kala‘i, now 7, and Malie, now 4, in bags.

Robert Vickers Sr. stands next to a portrait of his late son, Kraig Vickers, at the Vickers family home in Kokomo on Monday. Kraig Vickers, 36, of Virginia Beach, Va., was among 30 Americans who died after a U.S. military helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan.

Vickers Sr. and Vickers pose with lobsters they caught while diving in waters off Stable Road in Spreckelsville recently.

Vickers, 36, of Virginia Beach, Va., and a 1992 Maui High School graduate, was among 30 Americans who died after a U.S. military helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan. He was a Navy explosive ordnance disposal specialist attached to a Navy SEAL team unit.

Family members leaning on one another for support

August 9, 2011

A photograph of Kraig Vickers in his Navy uniform hung on a wall beneath a cross alongside photos of other family members in his childhood home.

Asked if his son's photo was always under the cross, his father, Robert Vickers Sr., chuckled, before going to answer the phone, which has been constantly ringing of late.

The person on the other end of the line could have been a relative or friend offering condolences, someone planning his son's funeral, or a member of the news media.

On Monday afternoon, members of the Vickers family continued to see a constant stream of visitors to their Kokomo home, as they coped with the loss of 36-year-old Kraig Vickers, who was one of 30 American service members killed when a military helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan. The 1992 Maui High School graduate was a Navy explosive ordnance disposal specialist attached to a Navy SEAL unit.

"It doesn't feel real," said the serviceman's sister-in-law Lei Vickers, who teared up, off and on, as she sat with the family at the Vickers' dinning room table, reminiscing about the loved one they'd lost.

Her husband, Mark, an older brother, and Vance, a younger brother, were in Delaware with their sibling's widowed and pregnant wife, Nani.

They were there to receive Kraig Vickers' remains at Dover Air Force Base, possibly today. The two brothers went to be with Nani Vickers in Virginia Beach, Va., after learning Saturday about their brother's death. They all flew to Delaware on Monday.

"They have been helping (Nani) a lot," said Vance Vickers' wife, Liana, who gave birth just three weeks ago to a boy, Mason.

She said it was Nani Vickers' wish that her husband's brothers be with her in this time of grief.

Liana Vickers said her husband, a transportation security officer for TSA, thanked those who have prayed for them. She asked that people continue to pray, as that has helped the brothers and Nani Vickers get through the ordeal.

The brothers' wives on Maui were giving support to the family by greeting those who came to the Kokomo home.

Even as the family dealt with the sudden tragic death, Robert Vickers Sr. said they were doing "good."

"The Lord's grace is good to us," said the father, who is a devout Christian and a minister.

"I know Kraig's commitment to the Lord is the number one priority," he said later in the interview.

Asked about his son's dangerous career choice, Vickers said, "He was energetic, he was very adventurous. Those were the things he wanted to do, so we supported him."

The father, who recently retired as a civilian traffic reconstructionist with the Maui Police Department, added that he spoke to his son about the "consequences" of his military service, which he said his son understood.

Kraig Vickers was scheduled to be stationed at Pearl Harbor in May, his father said, adding that he was looking forward to diving with his son.

After graduating from high school, where he was a popular football and wrestling standout, Kraig Vickers attended Evangel College in Missouri on a football scholarship. But during his freshman year, he decided college wasn't for him and returned home, his father said.

He worked in jobs such as hotel security and then asked his father to teach him how to dive; the son remembered how his father learned to scuba dive while in the Air Force.

Kraig Vickers joined the Navy in 1996. He wanted to be a Navy SEAL, his father said, but instead became an explosive ordnance disposal specialist.

While stationed at Pearl Harbor, the elder Vickers said his son met his future wife, the then Nani Flores, online.

Flores was a former University of Hawaii Wahine basketball star.

The elder Vickers said his son called him up and said, ''I get this girl I like you meet.''

He told him that she would be the one he would marry.

"Kraig, how many times you told me that," the elder Vickers recalls telling his son.

" 'I know this is the one. She sounds like you and mom,' " his son replied.

Robert Vickers Sr. said the future Mrs. Kraig Vickers wanted his son to go to Bible study and be a good Christian, just like his parents.

The elder Vickers and his wife, Mary, went to Oahu to meet the former collegiate basketball star, who is 6 feet 2 inches tall. Kraig Vickers, the tallest in the family, was 6 feet 1 inch.

The elder Vickers said he laughed when he saw that Nani was taller than his son.

The two were married in 2003 at Nanakuli Ranch on Oahu. There was a luau. That same year, brother Mark Vickers also got married along with sister, Michelle, who is now Michelle Yarborough.

As for how his daughter-in-law is coping with the loss, the elder Vickers said: "She's hanging in there. She knows she had to be strong for the kids."

But the couple's son, Noah Kala'i, 7, keeps asking for his father, the elder Vickers said.

The couple also have a daughter, Malie, who is 4, and a baby on the way. They also are guardians of 18-year-old Lisa Makahea Flores, who just graduated from high school, the Vickers family said.

Robert Vickers Jr., the eldest of the four Vickers boys, was busy Monday scanning and printing photos of his late brother, who could be seen smiling with his family or posing with the fish and lobster that he caught diving.

"For all the years I've known him, I never seen him angry or upset," Robert Vickers Jr. said. "He always listened to what you had to say. And everything he did, he did graciously, and he did it because he wanted to do it, not because he had to."

One of his fondest memories of his late brother was when he received a letter from him while a freshman at Azusa Pacific University near Los Angeles.

In the letter, Kraig Vickers said he knew his older brother was having a hard time financially and so was the family, who was paying the tuition.

Kraig Vickers told his brother that the family was eating saimin and Vienna sausage each night, and they were getting tired of it.

When Robert Vickers Jr. looked in the envelope of the letter, he saw a bunch of loose change, no bills. Kraig Vickers said he had saved some money for his older brother.

Robert Vickers Jr., who is a football coach at Kamehameha Schools Maui and a manager for TSA, said the letter showed his brother's funny - and caring - side.

Mark Vickers, a police sergeant, wanted to share his sentiments about his brother even if he wasn't present for the interview. His wife, Lei, passed on the message.

"Kraig was someone who was loved by everyone. He was the best brother, friend and companion that anyone can ask for.
He always put others first before himself.

He had a spark for life that no one could match.
Kraig will be surely missed but never forgotten."


Vickers fearless in defending country, proclamation reads

August 12

WAILUKU - Mayor Alan Arakawa issued a proclamation Thursday honoring the late Kraig Vickers, who would have turned 37 on Thursday but died during combat in Afghanistan.

"Kraig is remembered for his bravery and fearlessness in defending his country," the proclamation read. Vickers was "someone who made everyone around him laugh well and often" and was also "a loyal friend and teammate who would sacrifice all to help someone in need."

Vickers, a 1992 Maui High School graduate and a football and wrestling standout, was a Navy explosive ordnance disposal specialist attached to a Navy SEAL unit. The 36-year-old Virginia Beach, Va., resident died when a CH-47 Chinook military helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan last week.

On Thursday, Vickers' father, Robert Vickers Sr., said he believed that his son's wife, Nani, along with his two other sons, Mark and Vance, were still at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. The remains of the 30 American troops who died in the crash were brought to Dover on Tuesday.

"It's taxing for them. (But) they are getting things done," Robert Vickers Sr. said about his daughter-in-law and sons via phone from his Kokomo home.

He said the family plans to hold funeral services on Maui, although he wasn't sure because the military has not yet released the remains.

Reflecting on what would have been Kraig Vickers' 37th birthday, Robert Vickers Sr. said: "We know where he's at. Knowing Kraig, he says he beat us to the pearly gates.

"Everything he did, he tried to beat us," Robert Vickers Sr. said of his son's competitive spirit.

He said he knew about the proclamation beforehand and was "surprised" when he first heard about it.

All military personnel should be recognized, he said.

"Kraig would say that proclamation should be for all the vets, whether they gave their life, whether they gave the ultimate sacrifice or not; to serve the country, it's an honor. The mayor recognized this, and it is much appreciated."

The proclamation also quotes from the World War I poem "For the Fallen," by Laurence Binyon. It says: "They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them."

Vickers was born Aug. 11, 1974, at Castle Hospital on Oahu. He also attended Evangel College in Missouri to play football. He later enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where he served for 15 years.

He is survived by two children, Noah Kala'i Vickers and Mali'e Vickers. Nani Vickers also is expecting another child. Nani and Kraig Vickers are the legal guardians of Lyssa Makahea Flores as well, family members said.


Virginia surfers honor Vickers

200-plus paddle out to mourn him

August 11

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Red carnations and fluttering American flags lined the beach, forming a gateway to the surf Tuesday night. Sunflowers, daisies and red roses filled buckets, as more than 200 surfers picked up a flower, clenched it in their teeth and paddled out into the ocean off Sandbridge near one of Kraig Vickers' favorite surfing spots.

Just south of the Little Island Fishing Pier, surfers and stand-up paddlers formed a giant circle, interlocking hands and paddles in a ceremony called a paddle-out.

The event was a rare public display of mourning for victims of the crash in a city home to secretive, close-knit SEAL teams and those who work with them. Organizers asked that no interviews be conducted. Vickers'wife, Nani, on Tuesday was at the Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where the remains were brought home.

Vickers would have turned 37 today. Friends and family describe him as a standout high school football player at Maui High School, devoted to his family and as smart as he was strong. A picture of him displayed Tuesday showed him sitting on the beach, cradling one of his daughters in his massive forearms.

He enjoyed stand-up paddling, and last year he entered a Sandbridge race with his daughter, who wore a water wing, riding with him on the board.more »»

August 8, 2011

Friends, family recall ‘fearless young man’

Maui native Kraig Vickers faced challenges head-on.

It came as no surprise to friends and coaches that Maui native Kraig Vickers had taken on a job that was dangerous and deadly.

The 36-year-old, who was a standout in football and wrestling at Maui High School, was among 30 Americans who died after a U.S. military helicopter was shot down Saturday by insurgents during fighting in eastern Afghanistan. Vickers, a 1992 Maui High School graduate, was a Navy explosive ordnance disposal specialist attached to a Navy SEAL team unit, family said.

"He was a fearless young man. His career doesn't really surprise me," said Lindsay Ball, Vickers' former wrestling coach who also taught at Maui High.


High school classmate and friend Sindylu Medeiros remembers a softer side of Vickers.

"He was very thoughtful, very kind, very respectful," she said.

Medeiros (at that time Sindylu Hamamoto) said sometimes people would mistake Vickers' kindness for weakness, but the latter wasn't the case.

"He was an all around good person," the former cheerleader said.more »»

Maui native among dead; ‘a great loss’

August 7

Kraig Vickers, a 1992 graduate of Maui High School and a Maui Interscholastic League defensive football player of the year, was among 30 Americans who died in a U.S. military helicopter shot down during fighting in Afghanistan, his father, Robert Vickers, confirmed by telephone Saturday night.

Kraig Vickers, 36, was a Navy Bomb Disposal Team member, said his father, who could barely speak of his loss.

"He was just one of those kids who was well liked by everyone, other students, the teachers, the administration," Lee said. "He wasn't one of those bullies. In fact, it was the opposite. He was a real leader. If someone was out of line and picking on someone, Kraig would step in and set them straight."

Lee said Vickers was the product of his parents' skill in rearing him and his siblings.

His other brothers are Robert Jr., a coach at Kamehameha Schools Maui high school; Mark, a Maui police officer; and Vance. His sister is Michelle. They all still live on Maui..

Lee said the news of Kraig Vickers' death had spread quickly, with parents of former players and cheerleaders spreading the word, which was announced by one of his Maui friends on Facebook.

"The war's been going on for a while, and it never hit home like this before," Lee said. "People die in wars, yes. And then this happens, and it brings it all home. What a great loss." more »»

Maui native Kraig Vickers in his 1992 Maui High School graduation photo. Friends and family remembered the 36-year-old Sunday as strong and kind, after he died Saturday during a military mission in Afghanistan.


  1. Osama's dead. Let's leave'm to their shithole. Just one Redneck Mississippian's opinion.

  2. Just make the Pakis, and Iranians one solemn promise: If a Nuke ever goes off in the United States those two countries immediately become glassland, parking lots.

  3. .

    That war isn't worth it.

    It hasn't been for more than nine years.


  4. We need a guiding star.

    Hmmm......ah! Here's one!

    Our star is to weaken islam as a whole or weaken any islamic state.

    We should divide Afghanistan up into two....maybe ever three.

    They'd be prime to keep slaughtering one another.

    This idea of creating a harmonious Afghanistan out of all that tribalism is.....well it might take another generation to do it, if then, and, what have you created? A successful islamic state.

    Nay, best to keep it low level and let them blast one another.

    One man's opinion.....


  5. T-Paw is dropping out.

    SP will be dropping in.

    Right after Labor Day.


  6. Peter Schiff:The Fix is In:
    How Government and Banks Benefit from Economic Crisis

    The government policy simply encourages banks to borrow money at zero percent from the Fed, and then use significant leverage to buy low yielding treasuries at 2 to 4 percent. The result is a banker's dream:
    guaranteed low risk profit.

    In other words it will encourage banks to lend to the government, which already borrows too much, and not lend to private borrowers, whose activity could actually benefit the economy.

  7. She's lost a bunch of weight:

    Going for the Hollywood vote?

  8. Looks just the same to me.

    She could be Twiggy and she'd not get the Hollywood vote.


  9. T-Paw --- Nice guys finish last.

    Old saying, and often very wrong headed.


  10. Tim Pawlenty, he did not finish last.

    He did not finish, at all.
    He did not survive the cut.

    Whether or not he's a nice guy.

    Interesting that Ron Paul matched Mrs Bachmann in the straw poll, and is ignored by the media.


  11. ... on at least 16 separate occasions, Bachmann petitioned the federal government for direct financial help or aid. A large chunk of those requests were for funds set aside through President Obama's stimulus program, which Bachmann once labeled "fantasy economics." Bachmann made two more of those requests to the Environmental Protection Agency, an institution that she has suggested she would eliminate if she were in the White House.

    Taken as a whole, the letters underscore what Bachmann's critics describe as a glaring distance between her campaign oratory and her actual conduct as a lawmaker.
    Combined with previous revelations that Bachmann personally relied on a federally subsidized home loan while her husband's business benefited from Medicaid payments, it appears that one of the Tea Party's most cherished members has demonstrated that the government does, in fact, play a constructive role -- at least in her life and district.

    "It had been a longstanding tradition in Congress to be fiscally conservative in every other district other than your own," said John Feehery, president of QGA Communications and a top adviser to former Speaker of the House J. Dennis Hastert.
    "Bachmann apparently is being a traditionalist."

  12. Quitting early, that is not the same as finishing.

    Not going the distance does not qualify one as a finisher.

    Though the drop-out may well be finished.

  13. I'm laughing at you, again, boobie.

  14. T-Paw --- Nice guys finish last.

    He finished last because he attacked a woman in the debate but treated Romney with kid gloves. People can smell a bully.

  15. Civil war rages in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

    It boils below the surface in Bahrain.

    Peaceful demonstrators take to the streets in Egypt and Israel.
    The economics of maintaining a perpetual war footing are driving the civilian protesters in those two countries, while cementing US influence, in both.

  16. .

    T-Paw --- Nice guys finish last.

    I've heard it said that in today's political climate to win Iowa you meed to lose the general election.



  17. Syrian ships shelled the Mediterranean port city of Latakia, activists reported on Sunday, as President Bashar al-Assad used the navy to attack his own people for the first time.

  18. .

    The government policy simply encourages banks to borrow money at zero percent from the Fed, and then use significant leverage to buy low yielding treasuries at 2 to 4 percent. The result is a banker's dream:
    guaranteed low risk profit.

    More ill-designed government policy Dougo. This time on mortgages.

    Fannie Mae promises to keep families in homes, but instead pressures banks to foreclose

    In early December, a senior executive at Fannie Mae assured members of the Senate Banking Committee in Washington that the mortgage giant was doing everything possible to address the foreclosure crisis.

    However, interal Fannie May documents show that the company illegally pressured banks to foreclose on properties while the bank was actually in negotiations with the owners to make a deal.

    Other documents show FM told banks they expect 10-12% of troubled propertis to be foreclosed each year.

    Why you might ask. Under current government rules any loss Fannie incurs on foreclosures is reimbursed by the government (translated, you and me).

    Fannie wants to rid itself of any troubled properties before it once again becomes a private company and the backstop is gone.



  19. .

    This time the military.

    More government "I want it all" incompetance.

    $65 Billion Cost, 30 Year Old Technology, and Never Flew a Day in Combat

    In an odd way, kinda reminds you of the 'Spruce Goose' only more expensive.

    For every hour in the air the plane requires 45 hours of maintenance. Should be in the Guinness Book of World Records.


  20. Has anyone else noticed that yobborat is an idiot?


  21. But his wife is quite bright, being for Sarah Palin.

    She brings the I.Q. of the couple up to average.


  22. Obungler Eases Into A Lower Level Of Political Hell

    Slides into the 30 percent bracket.

    There where the frauds and deceitful dwell.



  23. He's gonna have to flop them floppy ears real real fast in order to rise out of there, where the air currents are all against you.


  24. Alright, who knows the answer to this query - why did it become traditional to mount a horse from the left side?


  25. One of my daughter's friends, who could easily have gone to law school, his father being a lawyer and he a great student, joined up to go to islamic lands and was killed.

    I don't know what to say about these things.


  26. President Downgrade is no longer receiving daily economic briefings and his whole team (except for Geithner) has quit.

  27. " ... on at least 16 separate occasions, Bachmann petitioned the federal government for direct financial help or aid. A large chunk of those requests were for funds set aside through President Obama's stimulus program, which Bachmann once labeled "fantasy economics." "

    This can easily be explained in 3 words:
    She's a lawyer.

  28. RIP

    Only an idiot of the first water could find comparability in the Egyptian and Israeli demonstrations. And was the this the thread to start that stuff?

    I doubt the guy has a son who served downrange. Had he, there would be some empathy.

  29. Geithner can reconcile everything by himself:

    With Turbotax

  30. Rick Perry is the Bilderburg designated heir apparent to the Islamoid Mahdi, Obombya. But the mainstream media will keep this secret until after the 2012 election, for entertainment value.

  31. The Heisei boom, financial trickery, and central bank voodoo

    – Can the U.S. support two lost decades?
    Japan asset bubble collapse solutions exported to the United States.

    9 graphs showing troubling similarities...

  32. Will the country commit Hairy Perry?

  33. Most people are right handed, and thus have a dominant side of balance. It's more "natural" to mount a horse from the left side while having your dominant leg (the right one) in the stirrup to push with and lift yourself by.

  34. Miss T, daughter says the tradition comes from nothing other than that in olden days everyone had swords usually on the left side, and it made it hard to get on from the right for that reason, the sword or sabre getting in the way.

    But, I will give you $20 Extra Play Wampum Cash for the effort.



  35. Please for christ sake help this poor boy from Haiti
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  36. .

    I just assumed it was tradition. However, when I looked it up everyone mentioned the sword as the start of it.

    However, few people use swords these days. These days some argue there is a practical reason.

    Unlike humans, horses eyes are set near the side of their heads so that they work independantly and the horse can almost see for 360 degrees. The horse is prey and this vision allows it see predators coming from either side.

    The horse has to be trained to accept humans coming up and mounting them. This is usually done from one side or the other. Tradition usually dictates it's from the left hand side. If trained that way, the horse will get nervous when someone approached it from the right hand side. (of course, unless it has been trained to be mounted from the right hand side.)

    If approaching a horse you dont' know, the odds would be with you if you approach and mount from the left hand side.


  37. .

    That by the way is the limit of my knowledge of horses. Unfortunate that it had to come from google.


  38. .

    By the way, I also have a blogspot:

    I too am trying to pay my way through college. I have recived an offer from a wealthy philanthropist who has offered to match on a 10 to 1 basis every dollar that I raise myself.

    Please go to the blog address listed, push the 'contribute' tab on the left hand side next to the Hello Kitty add, put in your credit card number, and contribute a $1.

    It's that simple. It's that cheap.

    Save a mind. Send a kid to college.


  39. :)

    heh, I always knew you were an outright BEGGER

    All that tryin' to sell shit through SoulsRus.


    Go to England, you'd fit right in with the yobbo class!


  40. If approaching a horse you don't know it would be best to say, "hello, horsie," and continue on with your business.

  41. It's more "natural" to mount a horse from the left side while having your dominant leg (the right one) in the stirrup to push with and lift yourself by.

    I'm having trouble with this, having trouble visualizing it. All that comes to mind is Julius Caesar mounting his horse backwards and riding off, which he did, for the practice in balancing it gave him.


  42. Then go to "Rufus.Ethanolforall blogspot, and leave a tenner. I'll be researching Wild Turkey this week. :)


  43. .

    Note: While I prefer yo use your credit card, personal checks will also be accepted for a limited time only.

    Please send personal checks to the following address:

    Phil Smith
    Room 308, Zuma Rock Motel
    38 Minna Street.
    Abuja, FCT
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    Note please send as quickly as possible. If for some reason your check is returned to you, visit my website above for new address.

    May God(s) bless your generosity.


  44. Just for the record: Julius Caesar researched some o dat "Wild Turkey," also. :)

    Jes sayin'

  45. .

    I'm having trouble with this, having trouble visualizing it.

    I was having the same problem but not being a horse aficionato I was reluctant to display my ignorance.



  46. "Yeah," he said, "I did that on purpose. I wuz testin' my balance."


  47. .

    Caesar mounting his horse backwards and riding off, which he did, for the practice in balancing it gave him.

    Another tidbit I remember from google.

    Seems a mentor of Alexander wrote a tome on horsmanship. Went into it about the whole horse thing but then suggested you train the horse to be mounted from the right hand side just in case you are forced to do it in battle.

    You don't want your horse shying away from you when you have some persian "Immortal' bearing down on you with a scimitar.


  48. Pawlenty had been building momentum after a May campaign launch in which he framed himself as the one in the race willing to deliver the hard truths and confront public policy sacred cows. The climb screeched to a halt in a New Hampshire debate in early June, when he shirked the chance to back up prior tough talk about Romney when they were face to face.


    In that same debate, Bachmann declared herself a candidate and immediately cast a long shadow Pawlenty had trouble escaping. When he went on the attack against Bachmann in an Iowa debate this week, some wondered if he came on too strong.

    His ability to raise money paled compared with Romney and others. The straw poll showing threatened to discourage possible donors.

  49. Go to Valuable Tips On Fishing High Mountain Lakes In Idaho.disgorge
    for all you need to know about fly fishing the big ones.

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  50. OK, what was the name of Alexander's horse?


  51. What was the name of Roy Roger's horse? What was the name of his dog? What was the name of his girlfriend? What was the name of his sidekick?


  52. What was the name of the heroine's horse in True Grit?

    How did the horse die?

    How did Rooster die?

    Where was he buried? (Rooster, not the horse)

    How did the horse come out totally dry on the farther shore after swimming a fast moving river?


  53. SETI is back on the air

    posted at 5:30 pm on August 14, 2011 by Jazz Shaw

    Back in April we told you about the shuttering of the Allen Array and the difficulties that E.T. would have phoning home. Well, if you happen to be in touch with the lovable alien, let him know to load up a few more minutes on his long distance card because SETI is back, on the strength of private donations.

    Forty-two radio telescope dishes near Mount Shasta will again start listening for sounds of intelligent life in the universe this fall after donors — including actress Jodie Foster — came up with more than $200,000 to save the Mountain View-based SETI program, made famous by the movie “Contact.”

    The Allen Telescope Array was shut down in April when the SETI (Search of Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute ran short of of money for the project.

    The non-profit organization, which was founded in 1985 and funded in the 1990s by Hewlett Packard co-founder David Packard, said the $210,000 in donations it has raised this summer will allow the radio antennas to be turned back on by September. They will be re-calibrated and operated 24 hours a day through the end of 2011 while the organization continues to raise funds.

    For full staffing they require roughly $2.5M per year, and apparently their new drive to raise private funds is gaining traction even in a tough economy. If they finish the next round of collections by Christmas it looks like they may be good to go for the next two years at least.

    Another positive sign is that the team seems to be shifting their strategy to a less catch-all plan of scanning the entire visible universe and beginning to focus on the most promising spots. With the wealth of new exoplanets being discovered, SETI seems poised to begin devoting a larger portion of resources to specific star systems where rocky worlds orbit in the “Goldilocks zone” where liquid water can exist.

    I understand that this is all in the realm of science fiction… for now. But if they ever do get that phone call, I’m enough of a foolish optimist to believe that everything on the Earth could begin to change overnight.

  54. Thousands of others have been arrested, many of them tortured, according to rights groups.

    The Observatory said in a statement Sunday that it has documented the names of 71 Syrians who have died under torture in Syria since the start of the uprising in mid-March.

    The government has justified its crackdown by saying it's dealing with terrorist gangs and criminals who are fomenting unrest.

  55. Answer to last:

    Horse Head Nebula
    Horsehead Nebula
    aka as Barnard 33 in emission nebula IC 434


  56. Funny: They sent my Census form back! AGAIN!!! In response to question #4: "Do you have any dependents?" I replied - "12 million illegal immigrants; 3 million crack heads; 42 million unemployable people; 2 million people in over 243 prisons; and 535 IDIOTS in the U.S. House and Senate."

  57. GOP candidate Herman Cain at last night's debate:

    "A poet once said, 'life can be a challenge, life can seem impossible, but it's never easy when there's so much on the line.'"

    That poet? The lyricist for the theme song to Pokémon: The Movie 2000, recorded by Ms Donna Summer.

  58. Seems I'm bored -- Newsletter

    Thank you very much for the responses from you all to the request for evidence and feedback on Sylvain's blog. He was amazed and pleased by the large number of comments.

    I have been working most of the weekend (along with Sylvain and Eri) on the whitepaper pertaining to geoengineering and human rights violations. The whitepaper, titled Human Rights Approach on Trans-National Hazardous Environmental Program, will be presented in just a few days at the Critical Connections Conference. The conference is being held at the Center of Human Rights Studies and Social Development in Thailand. Eri will be boarding a plane tomorrow to go present the paper.

    Both Sylvain and Eri have been literally working around the clock on the whitepaper, which they plan to submit to others as well. Because of the deadline, neither of them have gotten much sleep of late. Their committment and dedication is to be commended.

    Regarding the numerous chemtrail-geoengineering evidence submittals that many of you posted on over the last couple of days, I haven't had a chance to post them as yet because I've spent most of the weekend working on the whitepaper. However, I do offer my sincere thanks for taking the time to sumbit evidence and want you to know that it will be posted.

    Please keep them coming. But, make sure that you follow the sumbittal instructions on this page:
    Submit Evidence-News-Events

    I'll get started on Monday posting the evidence that was sent in. It will take me a couple of days to get caught up. So, please be patient.

    Finally, borrowing a line from the old TV show Hill Street Blues:
    "Let's be careful out there."

    Things are likely to get worse before they get better. However, I firmly believe that the truth about the global elite will soon come to light. I also believe that ten year anniversary of 9/11 is significant and will trigger the collapse of their house of cards in a similar fashion to the way that the World Trade Center buildings fell.

    In the meantime, please spend a few moments each day quietly putting out the intention that the truth about geoengineering, 9/11, and other "conspiracies" will very soon be revealed and that justice will be served. If you only do one thing, let it be that.

    Our collective intentions are very powerful. When more people understand this and use this amazing power for good, it will be lights out for the global elite.


    900 Euclid, Santa Monica, CA 90403, USA


  59. Meanwhile, NATO announced that three service members were killed on Sunday in two separate improvised bomb attacks. The international coalition did not release any further details about the deaths.

    The French Defense Ministry said one of its soldiers was killed Sunday by isolated fire during an operation in the northeast province of Kapisa.

    The four deaths bring to 385 the number of coalition service members killed in Afghanistan this year. Sixty-two of them were killed this month.

  60. Only the willfully blind would ignore the obviously complementary applications of "people power" in the streets across the Middle East.

    Real democracy spreading across the region, slowly to be sure, but spreading none the less.

    Power to the People!


  61. Top 3 Idaho fishing spots:

    1. Clearwater River
    2. Coeur D'Alene Lake
    3. Snake River

  62. I disagree, Sam

    Main Clearwater isn't all that good for trout, not enough bugs. Some of the tributaries are better.

    Coeur d'Alene Lake was mucked up when they put in the mysis shrimp. Kokanee have gone downhill, though there are some of the big coho.

    No argument about the Snake. Got lots of everything.

    Try the almost impossible to reach parts of the Secesh.


  63. DR said,
    desert rat said...
    Only the willfully blind would ignore the obviously complementary applications of "people power" in the streets across the Middle East.

    Let me try to help you out, Sport. The Syrians shelled their own civilians from land and sea today. When you find a similar Israeli response, let's talk.

    Your lack of intellectual and spiritual depth (note: religious depth was not used - there is a fundamental difference which your kind will never see) make it impossible for you to see the world only monochromatically.

    How about a word of sympathy for the honored dead.

  64. As we noted and opined upon, on end, the Egyptian protests were mostly economic in nature.

    As are the Israeli protests.

    Apt for comparison.

    The police in Israel had started an attempt to clear the protesters from their campsites. Giving eviction notices to some camp kitchens and such.

    At we were told on 14AUG11 that the Security Forces were on the verge of violence.

    But, unforeseen by Yossi Sarid, The Prime Minister ordered the police to stand down.

    Prime Minister Binyamn Netanyahu requested from Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich to make sure that police and city officials would not issue evacuation notices for various campsites that have sprung up throughout the nation's cities, Israeli media reported Saturday.

    The prime minister's request comes on the heels of reported eviction notices in Or Yehuda and Yehud, as well as the kitchen tent in Tel Aviv's Nordau Street tent city. Earlier in the week, city clerks circled the tent cities in northern Tel Aviv, allegedly telling activists that the city would evict vacant tents.

    Apt for comparison with the behavior of President Mubarak and the Egyptian Security Forces, as the crowds gathered in Cairo.

  65. DR,

    In honor of the fallen, I will give you and the equines free rein. Enjoy.

  66. The Empire State manufacturing index came in at minus 3.76 in July, a sub-zero reading indicating month-to-month contraction (albeit slight) in business conditions but still an improvement from minus 7.79 in June to indicate a slightly less severe rate of contraction. Shipments were a clear positive, showing monthly expansion at plus 2.22, compared to June's minus 8.02.

  67. Oh, and by the way, the response of the regulars to this family's loss and the war in general is one reason I lost respect. Keep on hunting them road apples.

  68. Go to hell, Allen.

    You don't have to broadcast your sympathy over the internet for all to see to feel it.

    My daughter cried quietly over her friend one night, and that's enough.



  69. You're not Jewish anyway, Allen. Not really. One of your rules is don't slander other people when you don't know what the hell you are talking about, and you've slandered nearly everyone here. I am told from Jewish writings that loose lipped slander is "like killing the other" -- and we know that is forbidden.



  70. Sam, that -3.76 is last month's number (you'll notice it says "prior."

    This month's number will be out at 8:30 Eastern.

  71. A few of the recent minor numbers have been slightly 'less bad,' so it looks like the recent drop in gasoline prices due to the IEA Million Gallon/Day injections is having "some" small positive effect.

  72. Nothing about those casualties that made them "special". allen.

    No more heroic, no more commendable than any of the other dead that go unmentioned on a daily basis.

    Better to leave them that way, than to try to "pick the winners" of our country's sympathies.

  73. Yep, ok, Ruf. I'll check tomorrow (or later today).

  74. That's okay, though, Sam. Appreciate the inputs.

  75. Allen,

    John Kerry = Kraig Vickers
    Teresa Heinz = Nani Vickers

  76. The denial that Robert "Sandy" Vietze, 18, relieved himself on the girl's leg is in sharp contrast to testimony the girl's dad gave authorities early Wednesday.


    When the plane landed at JFK, Vietze was hit with a federal charge of indecent exposure -- which could land him in jail for up to a year -- and on Friday he was kicked off the US Olympic Ski Team.

    Vietze has admitted to consuming five or six beers and two rum-and-cokes before boarding.

  77. Adam Carolla was at his hillarious best on that story, Sam:

    Nobody has more who peed on who stories, largely from his misspent childhood, but a surprising number from more recent times.

    They also reminded us of the guy a few years back who took a dump on the Stew's Cart!

  78. Somebody should mount a hypoxia defense tm

  79. bob,

    Had I slandered anyone, I would be concerned...but not so much...

    I cannot take seriously the opinion of one such as you..."my wife will soon be dead of cancer". And you have the gall to criticize another. You truly are a Boomer.

    bob, I call them as I see them and usually have the facts to back me up. For example, the Liberty incident remains Israel 13, Nutters 0. Them be facts. If you find them slanderous ... Who cares?

    Get some rest. You will need it for another of the hundreds of full days you spend in front of your computer screen fighting phantoms and misquoting literature.

  80. Saying I fucked my own daughter.

    Allen if this were a real bar you'd be on the floor, or I'd be dead trying.

    You yammered on endlessly about what at trash mouth Trish was, but not a word about WiO. Doesn't bother me, it's just an exclamation point, after all, but WiO is of your tribe, he gets a pass.

    You took after Melody for no reason. You've taken after the management, the bar as a whole, did so above in fact, almost all the patrons.

    Melody was right, if this place is such a steaming pile of shit, you're the fly keeps coming back.

    Far from criticizing Israel, or Jews, I've always been supportive. But you are always dissing the Chrisitians, as in 'the church of the holy rollers, open tomb, snake handlers' or some shit like that.

    How Christianity will wither away, while your group will continue on as usual.

    I hope both make it myself, both having something to contribute.

    And your o so intimate relationship with G-d, damn like you are the only one that Knows the Dude. But God's an unknown x, not to be known, only to be experienced, if at all, on a meager level. Never happened to me, but I buy into that such things have happened to others.

    You are a purity Jew Allen, and this place, you're too good for it. Simply far, far too good for it.
    It shames you every time you enter the premises.

    You are the other side of rat, same coin. Nothing to choose between the two of you.

    You are always whinning Allen.



  81. Wife and I are going fishing today, 'tis why I'm up so early.



  82. You whinny Allen, whinny whinny whinny, like a self satisfied, self congratulating horse, and no more meaning. G-d's gift to the human world.

    Wife is back with the gassed up car.....


  83. Have a great day, Bob.

    (a man whose wife has "gassed-up" the car, and is now ready to go fishing is probably going to do just fine.) :)

  84. "Anonymous bob" (as descriptive a moniker as I've ever seen)

    Help me out, bob: What was that filthy word you used when speaking to Melody during your serial sexual harassment and staling incarnation?

    Oh, and, bob, what is the racial epithet you repeatedly used when speaking about/to Doug?

  85. Of course, I meant "stalking" - a felony here in Georgia, whether done physically, telephonically and/or via computer.

    Some would say it's insulting :-)

  86. This comment has been removed by the author.

  87. Laws enough to make everyone a criminal.

    Passing laws that they cannot or choose not to enforce.

    They are loose with laws and enforcement, there in Atlanta.

    Seen across the social spectrum, from a serial killer of children that went uncaught for years to school teachers that flaunted the testing to standard system that had been implemented.

    The well being of children does not seem to rate that highly, in Atlanta.

  88. Then, again, maybe the families of the murder victims failed to cooperate with the police.

    Knowing, in their hearts, that the police could never catch the miscreant. That by willfully failing to assist the police they were really protecting their family.

    Leaving the rest of the community to suffer from the predatory ways of the perpetrator.

    For the "Greater Good", of course.

  89. This comment has been removed by the author.

  90. Only a yob would fail to report a viscous felony, to the police.

    Leaving the victim to suffer from feelings of suppressed guilt, in perpetuity. Feeling a guilt for being a victim, then the additional guilt of knowingly not doing "the right thing", by failing to report the crime to authorities.

    Knowing that they protected their assailant, from law enforcement, grants an aura of approval to the crime.

    Sentenced to a life of repressed frustration.

    For their own good.

  91. It is something, funny enough to make a fellow laugh, to watch a person decry the uncivilized behavior of Londoners, while he matched their behavior, and worse, by his own actions.

    As it relate to protecting criminals from law enforcement authorities by inaction, which is indicative of approval of the criminals.

    Standing by, when action is called for, even demanded for by law. Choosing to support criminal activity and subsequent negligence amongst his own, rather than obey the law.

    Putting their private feelings before the common good.

    More than jury nullification, our comedian nullifies the law, on his own. No outside opinions required.

    The tribal chieftain of yobs.


  92. Twelve states constitute the likely battlegrounds for the 2012 election, based on Gallup's state-by-state ratings of President Obama's approval level.


  93. the battleground dozen in the middle of Gallup’s rankings have 155 electoral votes, and to win, Obama would have to capture 55 of those while holding his base. The battlegrounds, which also appear on lists drawn up by strategists in both parties, are two perennial swing states, Florida (29) and Ohio (18); Iowa (6); three in the South, Virginia (13), North Carolina (15) and Georgia (16); and five states in the West, Oregon (7) plus a grouping in the interior West made up of Nevada (6), Arizona (11), New Mexico (5) and Colorado (9). For those states, Obama would have to depend on a large Latino turnout. The Southern states would require a heavy turnout among blacks plus support from moderate-to-liberal suburban whites.

  94. Obama's probably in pretty bad trouble. The GOP will have to work ultra-hard to lose this election.

    I just pray the Pubs don't get a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, along with the House, and White House.


  95. A series of co-ordinated explosions have killed at least 74 people and wounded 250 more across Iraq, ...

    The bombs were detonated in largely Shia Muslim areas of the country. Casualties were mostly Shia-led security forces. A Sunni extremist group, the al-Qaida-affiliated Islamic State of Iraq, was blamed.

    The radical Sunni Islamoids are stirring up trouble, in Iraq and Syria.

    The "Establishment" of both countries responding with vigor and applied force to attempts by the radical Sunni insurrectionists to destabilize the normal political authority.

  96. .

    Admittedly, I don't know much about Rick Perry but now that he has announced as candidate for pres I have started to take note.

    First thing I've noted is that the first thing he did was go after the religious right. Admittedly, his prayer service was before he announced and since he is identified as a darling of the TP and the religious right so he has to buck up the base, therefore, I wouldn't take any points off for it yet. But still it makes me nervous.


    “We’re dismayed at the injustice that nearly half of all Americans don’t even pay any income tax.”

    — Texas Gov. Rick Perry, presidential candidacy announcement speech, Aug. 13

    This quote indicates to me he is clueless about the total tax situation in this country or that he is merely using GOP soundbites to pander to his base.

    In my opinion, Strike 1 against Rick.


  97. The ad entitled "Obama isn't working, Minnesota," features a series of Minnesotans speaking to the camera about their disappointment with the president's policies.

    Obama's approval rating hit an all-time low in Gallup's daily tracking poll over the weekend, with only 39 percent of Americans approving of his job performance.

    The poll marked the first time that Obama fell below the 40 percent threshold in Gallup's survey since becoming president, the result of a slumping economy, stubbornly high unemployment numbers and a recent bruising battle with Republicans in Congress to raise the nation's debt ceiling.

  98. Last week me and this Arab from work decided to have a moustache and beard growing competition. I still can't believe she won.

  99. Hi there, can I buy you a drink?

    Sure, thanks.

    You know, you remind me of my little toe.

    Is that because I'm small and cute?

    No, it's because I'll probably end up banging you on the coffee table.

  100. Ed Rollins, her campaign manager, said Sunday night the campaign team knows that, having had success already, the expectations will continue grow. The next round of debates, he said, will be an important test for her to move her campaign to another level.

    Sunday night’s show in Waterloo gave Republicans a taste of what’s coming. For Perry it was an impressive introduction.

    For Bachmann it was a homecoming to savor and a night to say thank you. For everyone watching, it was a hint of the collision that is coming in the months ahead.

  101. I don't think about dying.
    It's the last thing I want to do.

  102. Yeah, Bob, that's why we're drawing a Million Barrels/Day down from our Strategic Reserves.

    We're just swimmin' in crude.

  103. Bensley also told police, "I'm a vampire and I've been alive for over 500 years," according to Erickson.

    Emergency medical personnel said the suspect did not appear to be under the influence of drugs. Authorities accordingly placed a mental health hold on Bensley and set his bond at $40,000, the paper reported.

    The woman, meanwhile, suffered minor injuries, according to KTRK-TV.

    Feeding on Stranger

  104. Yeah, Bob, that's why we're drawing a Million Barrels/Day down from our Strategic Reserves.

    We're just swimmin' in crude.

    Smart. It's buy low, sell high.

  105. Don't take offense, Rufus, it just caught my eye :)

    Probably by some petroleum institute, or other.

    I've been reading up on Perry and Backmann, both are a little nuts.

    Backmann is flirting around close to Christian Dominionism, while Perry was campaign boss for .... ..... .....
    Ozone Al!!!

    Any fool can see our 'salvation' lies with Sarah Palin ! :)

    Caught ten or twelve, kept three for dinner tonight.


  106. Maybe Obumble will drop Biden and ask Hillary to run for VP in his place.

    She might well do it too, the craven witch.


  107. Being a campaign manager for the fella that got the most votes, that a disqualifier, for our comedian.

    Little wonder he backs the Quitter, not a Winner.

    He likes the unqualified, those that parrot the Party line, rather than folks that serve the full term in the jobs they campaigned for and won.

    A lot like thinking that those that dropped out, are finishers.

    Those that do not finish, while still losers, do not rise to the level of finishers.

    That's just not the way it is, not at High School, not at the Indy 500, not at Ranger School and not in politics.

    Dropouts are just that.

  108. If the objective is to beat Obama, there is only one winner in the field.

    Kansas City Star -

    ... we know a few things about Gov. Rick Perry. Foremost, he knows how to win. He has mowed down political opponents in a 27-year unbeaten streak, an impressive display of discipline and ability to read the winds.

  109. Tell it to your wife, yobborat.

    I doubt you will get anywhere with that line of argument with her though, she being smart, will see right through it.

    Free Play Wampum Day today.

    Always somethin' exciting going on around here.....



  110. She knows a dropout when she sees one, boobie.

    She likes Palin, but admits she is unqualified to be President.

    Thinks she'd make an adequate Senator, though.

    Congress standing tall with a 13% approval rating, would be able to welcome a drop out like Mrs Palin, with grudging acceptance.

    But as a potential President, Mrs palin even makes my wife gag.

  111. 61. stoicheion
    It isn’t Americans that look for a moderate but the Establishment. That is so they can control whomever is elected.

    Remember, it isn’t the (D) or the (R) that matters, or even the progressive, conservative label. It’s who gets what of the loot shaken out of the taxpayers pockets and prized from their fingers.

    So what is important is who counts the votes. They are the ones that decide who gets nominated. You can only win by getting more EV’s then the other side.
    NOTHING else matters.

    I can’t know for sure but it seems to me that it isn’t Sara’s plumbing arrangements that scares the establishment but her propensity for putting establishment crooks in jail. I have seen no sign of such behavior in Perry’s past.

    That makes me nervous since Bush proved that crony capitalism is at best marginally superior to crony socialism.

    I was hoping for a POTUS that will hunt down those corrupt Bath-tards and put them in jail
    Biden 2011
    Palin in 2012

  112. 62. Doug
    61. stoicheion…
    We’ve come a long way from how the Rosenbergs were treated to that “given” to Pants Berglar, Gorelick, Rubin, Raines, et-al.

    Down so far it looks like there is no up.
    That’s the best argument for Sara I’ve seen yet.

    My only reason for not supporting Sara is that she might not win.

    No one else could stoke the Obamanoids to that level of PARANOIA.

  113. Draft Rubio!
    He makes Perry look like Bush III

  114. But first, Zsa Zsa news --

    Is 94 year old Zsa Zsa Gabor going to be a mother?

    Actress Zsa Zsa Gabor lies in the back of an ambulance...

    Image by AFP via @daylife

    Zsa Zsa Gabor has always been associated with glamour in Hollywood — queen of film and television over the course of a five-decade career, married nine times, and even able to parlay a famous slap of a police officer into a career revival. In fact, the Huffington Post recently called her “the first and probably biggest Hollywood celeb to become famous for being famous.”

    But when does pursuing fame cross the line for a 94-year old? That point may have come this week, when her husband of 25 years told CNN that he had started the process of donor matching and blood work so he could turn Zsa Zsa into Ma Ma.

    That’s right, the esteemed Prince Frederic von Anhalt is planning to arrange for an egg donor, surrogate mother, and artificial insemination to allow Zsa Zsa to once again enjoy the wonder of motherhood.

    Why in the world would he do this? He said that he wants someone to be able to carry on the Gabor name. Zsa Zsa’s only child is daughter Francesca Hilton (daughter of hotel magnate Conrad Hilton, Zsa Zsa’s second husband). Hilton is, not surprisingly, shocked by the whole thing.

    And by this point, it would take a great deal to shock her, based on what Prince von Anhalt has been doing with Zsa Zsa. Despite the fact that Zsa Zsa has been hospitalized dozens of times in the last year or so, including a leg amputation, coma, hip replacement, a stroke, and much more, the prince provided photographs of her in her hospital bed to the media. Then he arranged for more pictures of her, sipping champagne for his recent birthday. Von Anhalt topped that off by spending almost $70,000 for a billboard on Sunset Boulevard to commemorate their 25-year anniversary. He then announced a grand party for that anniversary, and invited many of the Hollywood elite. A few celebrities did appear for the party last night, along with invited members of the media. The festivities lasted well into the night, and Zsa Zsa posed for pictures from her bed.


    "the esteemed Prince Frederic von Anhalt"



  115. Doug, as usual, makes good sense.


  116. Perry is for the Dream Act.

    Perry mandated HPV injections for all teen girls @ $360 a pop for whatever megadrug company that supported Perry.

  117. It'll be a sad sad day in the United States when we finally lose
    "the esteemed Prince Frederic von Anhalt"


  118. "But as a potential President, Mrs palin even makes my wife gag."

    Always thought that was 'Rat's North Star.

    Thoroughly Whipped.

  119. Maybe we should draft von Anhalt.

    He at least thinks out of the box, and has that prerequisite for a politician - total shamelessness.


  120. I was reading that Governor Perry - the universal opinion is - had executed an innocent man.

    At some political forum or other this was being discussed, and one old Texan got up and said, "Executing an innocent man takes a lot of guts. I like that. I'm for Perry".



  121. To all you maroons that think we have to raise taxes, here is the way the Feds should do it just as businesses and individuals have across this great nation:

    49. westerncanadian
    Here’s what the Texas deficit situation looks like from North of the border.

    CNN Jan 19 2011 said that in the next biennium, 2012-2013 the budget in Texas would close the deficit

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Texas lawmakers unveiled a Spartan budget late Tuesday night that slashes $31 billion in spending to close the state’s massive budget deficit. Education, Medicaid and corrections would be hit particularly hard.

    All of this appears to concern the upcoming 2012-2013 biennial Texas budget for which a deficit was predicted. First, the $27 billion deficit in 2012-2013 never happened, because 2012 and 2013 are in some place called the future. Second, Texas has produced a balanced budget for the coming 2012-2013 fiscal years by cutting proposed government expenditures by $31 billion. Third, the current 2010-2011 two year budget seems to have had only a $200 million deficit. All these numbers refer to two year periods because Texas makes budgets for a two year period, not one year.

    The $27 billion deficit never happened – it was forecast. Then the Texas budget makers whacked $31 billion out of the planned budget, meaning that a zero budget deficit is now forecast and the projected $27 billion deficit vanished. There is no $27 billion deficit.

  122. Tue Aug 16, 10:27:00 AM EDT

    That old Texan is stealing Sam's jokes.

  123. Jay Carney, meet Jay Carney.

    In 2001, the then-Time magazine reporter wrote a snarky piece criticizing President George W. Bush's month-long vacation that was billed as a "Home to the Heartland" tour. But almost exactly 10 years later Carney, now the Obama White House's press secretary, is defending President Barack Obama's Midwest job-creation tour and vacation at Martha's Vineyard.

    "I don't think Americans out there would begrudge that notion that the President would spend some time with his family," claimed Carney at a recent press briefing.

    But that's exactly what he, as a private citizen working for Time, did in 2001 with a Republican in the White House, even though the unemployment rate the month before Obama's vacation (9.1 percent) was almost double what it was the month before Bush's (4.6 percent.)

    Referring to one stop in the tour where Bush assisted in building a trail at the Rocky Mountain National Park, Carney chided: "Bush didn't actually help build that trail so much as he posed for the cameras as he simulated the act of helping build the trail."

    Fast forward to August 2011, when Carney complained "the air of cynicism is quite thick" in the briefing room after reporters questioned Obama's upcoming road trip, adding, "The idea that the President of the United States should not venture forth into the country is ridiculous."

    Never mind that years earlier the former Time reporter lamented Bush's "cynical attempt" to shape public opinion with a cross-country bus tour.

    Obama recently promised he "will not rest" until the jobs issue is solved – right before announcing his month-long vacation to Martha's Vineyard.

    Tisk tisk, Mr. President. 2001 Jay Carney would not be pleased.

    Read more:

  124. Obama: I’m Just Like Lincoln!

    Byron York is chronicling the outrages committed by President Obama on his taxpayer-funded campaign swing through Iowa and the Midwest. I was in the midst of a post on Obama’s whine that he is the victim of “bad luck,” as reported by Byron, when his latest dispatch landed in my inbox: “Obama compares woes to Lincoln.”

    At his campaign-style town hall meeting in Decorah, Iowa, President Obama compared the criticism he has received from Republicans and other political opponents to the troubles faced by President Abraham Lincoln during the civil war. “Lincoln,” the president said, “they used to talk about him almost as bad as they talk about me.”

    Almost as bad! Lincoln was “the original gorilla,” a sub-human, to the Democrats. It is impossible to imagine the hysteria that would result from any such depiction of Obama. But that was the least of it: the Southern states, in the grip of the Democratic Party, seceded rather than be governed by an anti-slavery President Lincoln. In the North, treasonous Copperhead Democrats bedeviled Lincoln’s administration throughout the Civil War. And a group of rabid Democrat/secessionists eventually assassinated him.

    We have remarked before on Obama’s striking ignorance of history, but even he must understand that his claim to be more abused than Lincoln is disgraceful. If a narcissist like Obama were capable of shame, this would be an appropriate time to show it.

  125. Many on the right think Rubio lacke experience, like BHO, but such is not the case:

    From 2000-2008, Rubio served in the Florida House of Representatives.

    During this period, he served as Majority Whip, Majority Leader and Speaker of the House, effectively promoting an agenda of lower taxes, better schools, a leaner and more efficient government and free market empowerment

  126. Sara Lee or Kraft?

    Ballpark Franks, or Oscar Meyer Weiners...
    that is the question.

  127. .

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Texas lawmakers unveiled a Spartan budget late Tuesday night that slashes $31 billion in spending to close the state’s massive budget deficit. Education, Medicaid and corrections would be hit particularly hard.

    Impressive if not for the fact that it was mandatory. All but one state has mandatory requirements for a balanced budget.

    Texas lawmakers had little choice. When it comes to the states, it is interesting to note where the emphasis on cuts is placed.

    A mandatory balanced budget at the state level makes sense. At the national level? Not so much.


  128. "All but one state has mandatory requirements for a balanced budget"

    Yeah, California does, but what does that mean in today's real World?
    Gimmicks and Can-Kicking Masquerades.
    ...leading to bankruptcy.

    As are the Feds...

    Are they subject to an alternate reality?

  129. The Real World has been cutting for four years. the Feds increase spending like there is no tommorrow.

    My wife's workload has doubled.
    (takes her mind off cancer-related fatigue)

    Obama takes a month off at Chappaquidick.

    Shared Sacrifice, indeed.

  130. 77. wws
    John – it’s rare that a person as willfully uninformed as you shows up on this forum. Are you even aware that the Texas Budget was passed in the Special Session this summer? And that there is NOT a deficit in this budget, in spite of the way you keep wishcasting one to be there?

    And how are you not aware that there is STILL $6.5 Billion (yes, BILLION) in the State’s Rainy Day Fund, which could be used if some unforseen emergency comes up?

    Here’s a Wells Fargo analysis on the 2012-2013 Texas Budget. Doubt you’ll be interested in it, John, but the rational people here might be.

    “In real terms, the 2012-2013 state budget represents a sharp decline in spending.”

    Yep, that’s exactly what We the Voters wanted him to do. That’s who libs like you really hate – not Perry, but the People of Texas who he represents. Too Bad for You, we don’t care whether you like us or not. And neither does Perry.

    and as far as Texas only creating “minimum wage jobs” – read here for a personal explanation as to why an entire class of entrepeneurs are bailing out of California and moving to Texas:

    one more thing – about your laughable predictions of declining state revenues:

    “On May 18, Susan Combs, the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, sent a letter to the capitol revising her previous estimate of revenues by a positive $1.2 billion. She cited faster-thanexpected job growth and stronger-than-expected retail sales as the central drivers of the revision.”

    (from the Wells Fargo analysis above)

  131. .

    I agree with everything you said in your last two posts, Dougo. No denying it.

    However, I think you are wrong in thinking a balanced budget amendment at the Fed level would change anything. Whether by statute or constitution they would find a way around any constraints. We've already seen it happen with "Pay-Go".

    Worse, it removes responsibility for the actions of the guys in D.C. Just like that new board included in Obamacare. The board can come out with any recommendation it wants and if Congress doesn't knock it down with a two thirds vote, it goes into affect.

    So the board suggests a cut in the cost of benefits (the only thing it is allowed to do) Congress can allow it without ever having to vote on it.

    The same situations would occur with a balanced budget amendment. You remove all responsibility from the dicks.

    Or we would see the same fiasco we've watched for the last six months in the fight over the debt ceiling.

    I prefer just to keep voting them out until someone gets in that will do his job.


  132. .

    Well the last two posts before the last one.


  133. What was wrong with the last one?

  134. .


    I was just referring to the two before that.

    Texas has a lot going for it. They have money from the oil industry, warm weather, a low cost of living, low housing costs, and a population that is growing through high birth rate and immigration.


  135. This comment has been removed by the author.

  136. If this picture doesn’t look very much like the glowing portrait Texas boosters like to paint, there’s a reason: the glowing portrait is false.

    Still, does Texas job growth point the way to faster job growth in the nation as a whole? No.

    What Texas shows is that a state offering cheap labor and, less important, weak regulation can attract jobs from other states. I believe that the appropriate response to this insight is “Well, duh.” The point is that arguing from this experience that depressing wages and dismantling regulation in America as a whole would create more jobs — which is, whatever Mr. Perry may say, what Perrynomics amounts to in practice — involves a fallacy of composition: every state can’t lure jobs away from every other state.

    In fact, at a national level lower wages would almost certainly lead to fewer jobs — because they would leave working Americans even less able to cope with the overhang of debt left behind by the housing bubble, an overhang that is at the heart of our economic problem.

    So when Mr. Perry presents himself as the candidate who knows how to create jobs, don’t believe him. His prescriptions for job creation would work about as well in practice as his prayer-based attempt to end Texas’s crippling drought.

  137. As expected, Rick Perry, the governor of Texas, has announced that he is running for president. And we already know what his campaign will be about: faith in miracles.

    Some of these miracles will involve things that you’re liable to read in the Bible. But if he wins the Republican nomination, his campaign will probably center on a more secular theme: the alleged economic miracle in Texas, which, it’s often asserted, sailed through the Great Recession almost unscathed thanks to conservative economic policies. And Mr. Perry will claim that he can restore prosperity to America by applying the same policies at a national level.

    So what you need to know is that the Texas miracle is a myth, and more broadly that Texan experience offers no useful lessons on how to restore national full employment.

    It’s true that Texas entered recession a bit later than the rest of America, mainly because the state’s still energy-heavy economy was buoyed by high oil prices through the first half of 2008. Also, Texas was spared the worst of the housing crisis, partly because it turns out to have surprisingly strict regulation of mortgage lending.

    Despite all that, however, from mid-2008 onward unemployment soared in Texas, just as it did almost everywhere else.

    In June 2011, the Texas unemployment rate was 8.2 percent. That was less than unemployment in collapsed-bubble states like California and Florida, but it was slightly higher than the unemployment rate in New York, and significantly higher than the rate in Massachusetts. By the way, one in four Texans lacks health insurance, the highest proportion in the nation, thanks largely to the state’s small-government approach. Meanwhile, Massachusetts has near-universal coverage thanks to health reform very similar to the “job-killing” Affordable Care Act.

    So where does the notion of a Texas miracle come from? Mainly from widespread misunderstanding of the economic effects of population growth.

    For this much is true about Texas: It has, for many decades, had much faster population growth than the rest of America — about twice as fast since 1990. Several factors underlie this rapid population growth: a high birth rate, immigration from Mexico, and inward migration of Americans from other states, who are attracted to Texas by its warm weather and low cost of living, low housing costs in particular.

    And just to be clear, there’s nothing wrong with a low cost of living. In particular, there’s a good case to be made that zoning policies in many states unnecessarily restrict the supply of housing, and that this is one area where Texas does in fact do something right.

    But what does population growth have to do with job growth? Well, the high rate of population growth translates into above-average job growth through a couple of channels. Many of the people moving to Texas — retirees in search of warm winters, middle-class Mexicans in search of a safer life — bring purchasing power that leads to greater local employment. At the same time, the rapid growth in the Texas work force keeps wages low — almost 10 percent of Texan workers earn the minimum wage or less, well above the national average — and these low wages give corporations an incentive to move production to the Lone Star State.

    So Texas tends, in good years and bad, to have higher job growth than the rest of America. But it needs lots of new jobs just to keep up with its rising population — and as those unemployment comparisons show, recent employment growth has fallen well short of what’s needed.

  138. His prescriptions for job creation would work about as well in practice as his prayer-based attempt to end Texas’s crippling drought.

    Blessings on the guv.

    One Sunday the head of the Soil Conservation Service and I were in church, and, listening to the endless list of people and situations we were all praying fervently for, we both noticed the lack of the one thing both of us thought necessary - rain!

    Really ticked us both off.


  139. .

    Note: If you are going to comment and you want to introduce some new objection to the Texas job numbers, you MUST provide original data. I spent about 4 hours digging through raw data to write this post. I don't want you to point to some pundit or blog post and take it on their authority, because I've already researched several idiot pundits who are talking directly out of their asses when it comes to the data. I want you to point to the raw data that I can examine for myself. This means links. I refuse to waste any more of my time on speculative bullshit or "Well, I'll wager that the Texas jobs don't really count because..."

    Damn, sounds like Rufus opened up a blog.


  140. With damned strict guidelines.