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

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

79,900 billion planets with civilizations on them

If There Are 17 Billion Earth-Sized Worlds In Our Galaxy, the Universe Is Bubbling With Life
Jesus Diaz GIZMODO

Astronomers have a mind-blowing new theory: that there are 17 billion Earth-sized planets in our galaxy. They don't yet know how many of these worlds are in habitable zones, but the implications of this discovery are amazing. So much that some claim the "quest for a twin Earth is heating up."
Simply put: If there are 17 billion Earth-sized worlds In our galaxy, it's clear that the Universe is bubbling with life.
The team, lead by Francois Fressin of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, used the latest data from NASA's Kepler mission to find that one in six stars have "a planet 0.8 - 1.25 times the size of Earth in an orbit of 85 days or less."
Of course, before we start with this alien life math woankfest, let's answer a fundamental question: why are Earth-sized planets important? The answer is simple: Earth is the only habitable planet that we know of. Scientists assume that, given the same set of conditions—orbit time, distance from sun, gravity and composition—life will develop in other star systems just like it developed in Earth. Simplifying (and without knowing yet why this is exactly), planets like Mars weren't big enough and planets like Venus were too close.
Now, let's be really conservative and assume that only one percent of those planets is in its star system's habitable zone. That's 170 million Earth-sized worlds that may harbor some kind of life.
Let's keep being skeptical. Let's say that only one percent of those planets have actually developed actual life. That leaves us with 1,700,000 worlds bubbling with lifeforms.
It's most probable that these worlds would have a variety of organisms but, continuing to be pessimistic, let's suppose that only one percent of those Earth-sized worlds have developed complex animals. That's 17,000 alternative Earths full of three-headed monkeys or whatever.
Finally, let's presume that one percent of those planets' animals have evolved so much that they have developed a civilization similar to ours. That's 170 worlds, people. 170 worlds is one amazing number, at least for me.
Life in the Universe
Now, if that's not amazing to you, look at the number of galaxies in the Universe. The most recent computer simulation puts that number at 500 billion. Of course, not all galaxies have the same numbers of stars, but since some are bigger than ours and some are smaller that ours, let's just assume that it all evens out. Wait. Let's be galactic jerks here and take 100 billion galaxies out of the total number. 400 billion galaxies, each of them with about 170 civilized worlds.
That's 79,900 billion planets with civilizations on them.
Read that number a couple of times.
Of course, the Universe is an awfully big place. So big that we may never encounter another civilization. But that's a minor point. The fact is that, even being conservative, even if we further cut that number drastically, even if we assume much lower percentages, even if we think that some civilizations may have been destroyed by asteroids or wars or some other kind of disaster—even if we just assume that, out of those 79,900 civilizations, only one percent have actually survived and thrived, that leaves us with 799 billion civilizations in the Universe.
Still too optimist for you? Destroy 99% of those with Death Star lasers. That's still 7.99 billion civilizations.
Going one step further, and think about the chances of meeting one of these civilizations. Let's presume that only one percent of the 7.99 billion have mastered warp drives—Not a crazy possibility! That's 79.9 million civilizations with Entreprises.
Oh, and all of this is assuming that only planets similar to ours can harbor life. The fact is, we really don't know that that is the case.
But given what we do know, knowing how life seems to thrive in the most desolate environments and looking at these extremely negative scenarios, there's really no other conclusion: We are just one of many. And when this whole thing makes my head spin, that's good news. We are not alone.
I have no doubt that the encounter is inevitable. We just have to survive long enough. But we will get there.
Read the summary of their paper at the [Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics]


  1. And to think, the height of civilization is Punkville, Mississippi.

    Who was it that said, if it's vacant, what a lot of wasted space, if it is not, what a scope for folly?

    ah -

    If they be inhabited, what a scope for misery and folly; if they be na inhabited, what a waste of space.

    — Attributed to Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881) on the first page of John Burroughs' 1920 book Accepting the Universe. It may have been the inspiration for a more optimistic line in the 1997 movie Contact, where in the first scene Ellie's dad (played by David Morse) says:

    The Universe is a pretty big place... And the one thing I know about nature is it hates to waste anything. So I guess I'd say if it is just us, an awful lot of space is going to waste.

    The earth is not alone, it is not like a single apple on a tree; there are many apples on the tree, and there are many trees in the orchard.

    — John Burroughs, The Breadth of Life, 1915.

    There is life in the garden.

    chauncey gardener

    President "Bobby": Mr. Gardner, do you agree with Ben, or do you think that we can stimulate growth through temporary incentives
    [Long pause]

    Chance the Gardener: As long as the roots are not severed, all is well. And all will be well in the garden.

    President "Bobby": In the garden.

    Chance the Gardener: Yes. In the garden, growth has it seasons. First comes spring and summer, but then we have fall and winter. And then we get spring and summer again.

    President "Bobby": Spring and summer.
    Chance the Gardener: Yes.

    President "Bobby": Then fall and winter.

    Chance the Gardener: Yes.

    Benjamin Rand: I think what our insightful young friend is saying is that we welcome the inevitable seasons of nature, but we're upset by the seasons of our economy.

    Chance the Gardener: Yes! There will be growth in the spring!

    Benjamin Rand: Hmm!

    Chance the Gardener: Hmm!

    President "Bobby": Hm. Well, Mr. Gardner, I must admit that is one of the most refreshing and optimistic statements I've heard in a very, very long time.

    [Benjamin Rand applauds]

    President "Bobby": I admire your good, solid sense. That's precisely what we lack on Capitol Hill.

    1. Drake Equation

      N = R^{\ast} \cdot f_p \cdot n_e \cdot f_{\ell} \cdot f_i \cdot f_c \cdot L

      Where N = the number of civilizations in our galaxy with which communication might be possible.
      R* = the average rate of star formation per year in our galaxy.
      fp = the fraction of those stars that have planets.
      ne = the average number of planets that can potentially support life per star that has planets.
      fℓ = the fraction of the above that actually go on to develop life at some point.
      fi = the fraction of the above that actually go on to develop intelligent life.
      fc = the fraction of civilizations that develop a technology that releases detectable signs of their existence into space.
      L = the length of time such civilizations release detectable signals into space.

      — Frank Drake. This is now known as the Drake Equation, first presented at a conference in Green Bank, West Virginia, it helped establish SETI as a scientific discipline. 1961.

    2. Where are they?

    3. Where do I get more of that?

      One of my top 5 movies.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. Chauncey Gardener quotes -

  2. My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch.

    - Jack Nicholson

    1. Tarantino says his mom was a hot young single living with two other young bitches, at least one of whom was black, so he feels like he's down with the struggle.
      A cool dude of sorts.

      A miserable, worthless, a-hole imho.

  3. Chances are, when we meet intelligent life forms in outer space they're going to be descended from predators.

    — Michio Kaku, string theorist, City University of New York, Alien Planet, Discovery Channel TV special, 2005.

  4. This is all boring though, a waste of time and money, like the moon mission.

  5. The Moon Mission Ruled.

    This Enterprise Idiot is an Ass, with a small head implant.

    1. I was quoting one of Rufoid's most egregious stupidities there, Doug, that you may have missed a while back.

      The Moon Mission didn't seem to hold much interest, was all a waste of time and money, to Mr. Mississippi.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Yeah, let's compare the cost of the Apollo Program to the Welfare State under Obama.
      (all shrub's fault, of course)

  6. — Michio Kaku, Tampon string theorist

  7. 26 young lives snuffed out in Connecticut.

    993,000 vacuumed down the drain in the last 3 years according to Planned Parenthoods own accounting.

    1. doug, why do you lie?

      that's only 2 years of vacuuming!!!

  8. Planned Parenthood makes $300 per vacuum job, yet the Feds (us) paid them half a billion last year, the better to promote their trade in young, disproportionately black, small souls.

    1. most of them would have looked like obama, if he had a son...

  9. 2011 Was a record year for planned parenthood:

    333,974 Vacuumed Souls

    542 Million taxpayer dollars.

  10. JFK:
    The Moon in Ten Years.
    I had my doubts.
    My best friend described how they had to plan assuming solutions would be found for problems not yet solved.

    Lower taxes in order to increase productivity, resulting in increased revenues for the Government.

    Obama and the Rufoids:
    Profits are evil, Crises are opportunity.
    Incite Crisis!
    The Community Organizer as POTUS.
    The Rufus as useful idiot at the local pub.

  11. The nice thing about Gabby Gifford's Husband is that he is accustomed to living with the void of empty space.

    Gabrielle Giffords and her Husband Aim Fire at NRA as They Launch New Gun Control Group

  12. (more folks were killed by knives and baseball bats than firearms last year)

  13. Google is going to provide free internet access in a ten-block area around their HQ in NY City.

    Bloomberg says he'd like Federal Funds to provide the service citywide.

    The little man should be behind bars.

  14. South Carolina Lawmakers Propose 5-Year Jail Sentence for 'Obamacare' Implementation

    Federal officials could face fines and jail terms under proposed legislation.

    Nullification is yet again picking up steam in Dixie.

    Pursuing an archaic legal theory that punctuated pre-Civil War disputes between the federal government and states, South Carolina state Rep. Bill Chumley last week pre-filed a bill for the upcoming legislative session that would criminalize implementation of President Barack Obama's 2010 healthcare reform law.

    If his bill becomes law, any state official caught enforcing the healthcare law would be guilty of a misdemeanor and "must be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than two years, or both."

    [ENJOY: Cartoons on U.S. Contraception Controversy]

    Federal officials caught enforcing the law, however, would be given stiffer punishment under the proposal.

    Any federal employee or contractor enforcing the law "is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than five years, or both," the bill proposes.

    "I think we're within our rights to do this," Chumley explained to U.S. News. "It's an obligation, I swore an oath to uphold the Constitution and protect the people."

    1. This is interesting. Would Deuce support this? I admit, it sounds appetizing. If not taken over into racism. States should have more rights, state's rights without the old racism.

      And may not be biting off more than it can chew.

      For with the coming downsizing of the Armed Forces Barky wouldn't have the troops to occupy the area.

      Because Hagel is the sign, and means,and the lapdog to do just that, and allow Barky to keep his promise to Medvedev, 'that after the election I will have more latitude to disarm the United States'. (One ' is a summary, two " is a quote)

      Maybe the south will rise again, in a way.


    2. Recall Panetta talked of his own exit if things were taken too far.

    3. The Hagel Pick Telegraphs Weakness
      Ken Blackwell and Bob Morrison
      Former Senator Chuck Hagel is a perfect pick for secretary of defense...if, that is, you belong to our country's insidious Unpreparedness Lobby.


      If you put a moral and intellectual weakling in the White House, the nation will probably be weakened. How hard was that to figure out?

      Hagel has been against even sanctions against Iran, the only man to voice this point of view, except the Iranians of course, who are foursquare in favor of his appointment.

  15. I wonder what lovers are like out there, in all those other worlds?

    Have the boiled eggs been all split in two with a hair, as in Plato, and are searching for one another, as soul mates are said here to do ?

    Or have the gods decided there on some other way, and perhaps the eggs still remain whole, undivided and at one, singing a Blakean tune of soul mate bliss, sexually fused from head to toe, unfallen?

    1. Perhaps we here are the exception, and are being punished for some primordial misdeed.

    2. There is the truth of it.

      boobie cosiders his life, not as a triumph or a blessing, but a punishment for past evils his soul has committed.

      That we live on a prison planet.

      So sad for him. That he'd even consider the proposition.

  16. Sunday Morning
    Wallace Stevens
    Complacencies of the peignoir, and late
    Coffee and oranges in a sunny chair,
    And the green freedom of a cockatoo
    Upon a rug mingle to dissipate
    The holy hush of ancient sacrifice.
    She dreams a little, and she feels the dark
    Encroachment of that old catastrophe,
    As a calm darkness among water-lights.
    The pungent oranges and bright, green wings
    Seem things in some procession of the dead,
    Winding across wide water, without sound.
    The day is like wide water, without sound,
    Stilled for the passing of her dreaming feet
    Over the seas, to silent Palestine,
    Dominion of the blood and sepulchre.

    Why should she give her bounty to the dead?
    What is divinity if it can come
    Only in silent shadows and in dreams?
    Shall she not find in comforts of the sun,
    In pungent fruit and bright, green wings, or else
    In any balm or beauty of the earth,
    Things to be cherished like the thought of heaven?
    Divinity must live within herself:
    Passions of rain, or moods in falling snow;
    Grievings in loneliness, or unsubdued
    Elations when the forest blooms; gusty
    Emotions on wet roads on autumn nights;
    All pleasures and all pains, remembering
    The bough of summer and the winter branch.
    These are the measures destined for her soul.

    Jove in the clouds had his inhuman birth.
    No mother suckled him, no sweet land gave
    Large-mannered motions to his mythy mind.
    He moved among us, as a muttering king,
    Magnificent, would move among his hinds,
    Until our blood, commingling, virginal,
    With heaven, brought such requital to desire
    The very hinds discerned it, in a star.
    Shall our blood fail? Or shall it come to be
    The blood of paradise? And shall the earth
    Seem all of paradise that we shall know?
    The sky will be much friendlier then than now,
    A part of labor and a part of pain,
    And next in glory to enduring love,
    Not this dividing and indifferent blue.

    1. IV
      She says, ``I am content when wakened birds,
      Before they fly, test the reality
      Of misty fields, by their sweet questionings;
      But when the birds are gone, and their warm fields
      Return no more, where, then, is paradise?''
      There is not any haunt of prophecy,
      Nor any old chimera of the grave,
      Neither the golden underground, nor isle
      Melodious, where spirits gat them home,
      Nor visionary south, nor cloudy palm
      Remote on heaven's hill, that has endured
      As April's green endures; or will endure
      Like her remembrance of awakened birds,
      Or her desire for June and evenings, tipped
      By the consummation of the swallow's wings.

      She says, ``But in contentment I still feel
      The need of some imperishable bliss.''
      Death is the mother of beauty; hence from her,
      Alone, shall come fulfilment to our dreams
      And our desires. Although she strews the leaves
      Of sure obliteration on our paths,
      The path sick sorrow took, the many paths
      Where triumph rang its brassy phrase, or love
      Whispered a little out of tenderness,
      She makes the willow shiver in the sun
      For maidens who were wont to sit and gaze
      Upon the grass, relinquished to their feet.
      She causes boys to pile new plums and pears
      On disregarded plate. The maidens taste
      And stray impassioned in the littering leaves.

      Is there no change of death in paradise?
      Does ripe fruit never fall? Or do the boughs
      Hang always heavy in that perfect sky,
      Unchanging, yet so like our perishing earth,
      With rivers like our own that seek for seas
      They never find, the same receding shores
      That never touch with inarticulate pang?
      Why set the pear upon those river-banks
      Or spice the shores with odors of the plum?
      Alas, that they should wear our colors there,
      The silken weavings of our afternoons,
      And pick the strings of our insipid lutes!
      Death is the mother of beauty, mystical,
      Within whose burning bosom we devise
      Our earthly mothers waiting, sleeplessly.

      Supple and turbulent, a ring of men
      Shall chant in orgy on a summer morn
      Their boisterous devotion to the sun,
      Not as a god, but as a god might be,
      Naked among them, like a savage source.
      Their chant shall be a chant of paradise,
      Out of their blood, returning to the sky;
      And in their chant shall enter, voice by voice,
      The windy lake wherein their lord delights,
      The trees, like serafin, and echoing hills,
      That choir among themselves long afterward.
      They shall know well the heavenly fellowship
      Of men that perish and of summer morn.
      And whence they came and whither they shall go
      The dew upon their feet shall manifest.

      She hears, upon that water without sound,
      A voice that cries, ``The tomb in Palestine
      Is not the porch of spirits lingering.
      It is the grave of Jesus, where he lay.''
      We live in an old chaos of the sun,
      Or an old dependency of day and night,
      Or island solitude, unsponsored, free,
      Of that wide water, inescapable.
      Deer walk upon our mountains, and quail
      Whistle about us their spontaneous cries;
      Sweet berries ripen in the wilderness;
      And, in the isolation of the sky,
      At evening, casual flocks of pigeons make
      Ambiguous undulations as they sink,
      Downward to darkness, on extended wings.

    2. Do some there sing thus, like some sing here?

  17. Shocker for Rufus - Wallace Stevens sold insurance. But never claimed to have saved uncounted lives by doing so.

  18. Returning to the debate of the previous post, I think it safe to say that time will tell how far Hagel gets in overcoming disinformation from their supposed subordinates and lobbyists, in reshaping, focusing and reducing military and intelligence excesses and restore the public rule of law and ethics not only in how detainees are treated, but also in how America's youth are used as cannon fodder in ideological wars talked up by spooks.

    The rest of the world remembers with extreme distaste the ‘WMD’ bullshit, wars, deaths, and the massive lie with the imbedded media. Reducing tensions in the Muslim wars can only benefit the security of the West and give moderate Israelis a chance to get peace back onto the agenda - though no doubt the hard lines on-going settlements and Morsi will provoke a reversion to the middle East problem sooner rather than later.

    Not only charity should start back at home - Mr Obama has demonstrated the pragmatic realism needed to refocus spending on growing the economy and jobs outside of the military machine, which should - but will not - get all the support that deserves.

    1. Hagel is a Israel hating, gay hating homophobe.

      He will fit in with the rest of the world and Obama.

    2. I love the "rest of the world"

      China occupies Tibet

      Russia swallowed Georgia

      Iran, Iraq, Syria & Turkey all occupy Kurdistan

      England occupies Northern Ireland, Faulkins

      Arabs and Moslems are overtaking and defacto annexing city centers across the globe turning them into sharia zones.

      and let's not forget Cyprus.

      yep the "rest of the world" great example

  19. Doug repeats the 'Firearms v hammers' lie.


    1. No he doesn't.

      (more folks were killed by knives and baseball bats than firearms last year) Doug

      Firearms v hammers came from Huchabee. And his quote was 'more people were killed by hammers than rifles last year'.

      Ash has shown that more people were killed by firearms than hammers last year, but not that more people were killed by hammers than rifles. Whether this is true or not needs some more research.

  20. Quirk, Doug, lest you miss my reply in the last thread re: Physicians Assistants:

    Sorry for the insults!

    Actually, I think PA's are a great idea but it does raise issues around competence, mal-practice, and patients expectations of getting top-notch care. PA's sound like a good way to streamline the system keeping the cost down but such ideas lead folk like Bob to scream DEATH PANELS!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. I don't think PA's will be making decisions on with holding care.

    3. Given my recent experience with the medical profession, restructuring is an excellent idea. As long as trail lawyers wander the streets, there will be lawsuits. My SWAG is that neither the number nor scope of lawsuits would escalate by expanding the hierarchy to include more paraprofessionals. Under such a system, the patient can assume more responsibility for deciding his level of care by requesting that his "case" go up one level for another opinion. Time and money but these hangnail and hemline aches going directly to the top is silly, expensive, and time-consuming. Even shorter version is that the point about paraprofessionals is borderline moot, because it's the old people and the chronically ill who are busting the medical budget. And this country can't have a dialogue about that without an immediate descent into Palin fireworks and the A-word.

    4. As long as trail lawyers wander the streets, there will be lawsuits.

      As well there should be, because without that threat the docs get really sloppy.

      Most people don't know it but the lawyers are an absolute necessity for well functioning health care.

    5. Bob,

      I am not a medical person but they, even doctors, use standardized dignostic and treatment procedures. These are created by **gasp** PANELS.

    6. use standardized dignostic and treatment procedures

      They do, and there is a word for it, which I can't seem to dig up.

      Protocol, maybe.

      The question is whether or not a particular treatment will be allowed under OCare.

      My brother, a doctor, and my sister, who works in medical technology, have said I don't know how many times "You got to get it right or you get sued."

      I find that comforting, and God Bless the lawyers.

      Personally I think D. could use a lawyer right now. Because the doctors are certainly not doing him any good.

      I wonder, can the VA be sued? Or are they protected someway.

    7. The term "paraprofessionals" comes from the industry, but it could arguably be replaced with something less suggestive. Professionalism is an attitude that is displayed at all levels within an occupation.

    8. The 'panels' that create the 'protocol' are not political hacks at this time, as I understand it.

    9. I heard that professional wasn't an attitude so much as the ability to pass a standardized exam. But attitude never hurts, I suppose. It's just that with the best attitude in the world if you don't know what the hell you are doing you shouldn't be in the profession.

    10. The 'panels' that create the 'protocol' are not political hacks at this time, as I understand it, but are rather made up of the doctors themselves or their organizations after much debate concerning their experience and knowledge and their best understanding as how to proceed with what they currently know.

    11. This comment has been removed by the author.

    12. "Besides negotiating discounts on services, HMOs control costs through utilization review, managing members’ care to reduce unnecessary services. In most cases, members select a primary care physician who acts as a “gatekeeper” to other medical services, such as specialists and diagnostic tests."

    13. From wiki:

      Critics of the American Medical Association, including economist Milton Friedman, have asserted that the organization acts as a guild and has attempted to increase physicians' wages and fees by influencing limitations on the supply of physicians and non-physician competition. Some counter this argument by citing "the American Medical Association has been supportive of medical school expansion to help ensure there are enough physicians to care for all Americans. The number of medical schools accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, of which the AMA is one of two co-sponsors, increased from 125 in 2006 to 137 in 2012. The number of medical students in the U.S. is also increasing." [20] In Free to Choose, Friedman said "the AMA has engaged in extensive litigation charging chiropractors and osteopathic physicians with the unlicensed practice of medicine, in an attempt to restrict them to as narrow an area as possible."[21]

      Profession and Monopoly, a book published in 1975, is critical of the AMA for limiting the supply of physicians and inflating the cost of medical care in the United States. The book claims that physician supply is kept low by the AMA to ensure high pay for practicing physicians. It states that in the United States the number, curriculum, and size of medical schools are restricted by state licensing boards controlled by representatives of state medical societies associated with the AMA. The book is also critical of the ethical rules adopted by the AMA which restrict advertisement and other types of competition between professionals. It points out that advertising and bargaining can result in expulsion from the AMA and legal revocation of licenses. Restrictions against advertising that is not false or deceptive were dropped from the AMA Code of Medical Ethics in 1980 (AMA Ethical Policy E-5.02). The book also states that before 1912 the AMA included uniform fees for specific medical procedures in its official code of ethics. The AMA's influence on hospital regulation was also criticized in the book.[22]

      There's much more. Doesn't even get into the political history of the AMA.

    14. I have written of the Doctors Guild being responsible for the 'Shortage' of doctors that is often predicted.

      How the Union certifies the teaching colleges and controls the supply chain od doctors, in the US.

      boobie pretended he didn't hear.

  21. Jon Stewart has been particularly biting since returning from holiday. His bit last night on gun control is worth the watch. Rufus, he even addresses your reasons, errr feelings, for the gun.

    Jon Stewart

    His interview is with McChrystal.

  22. A better way at looking at murder in this nation, regardless of what weapon or tool was used?

    The overwhelming number of murders were committed by African American males.

    So the laws should reflect that. It should be illegal for African American males, aged 14-40 to own or to have in possession any tool or weapon that could murder.

    Guns, knives, baseball bats, screwdrivers, any heavy hard object over 3 pounds.

    Yes it's time for a new law, let's call it the "african american safety act of 2012"

    1. hmmmm, just like the KKK - hiding behind a mask of anonimity.

  23. And while we are at it. Let's see what else causes the murder of so many?


    Almost 2 MILLION in 4 years under Obama and at tax payer expense!

    Just think of all those souls murdered?

    And most of them? were of African American decent!!!!!!

  24. 2013 Market Outlook:

    Mitch Zacks (whose site I used to watch before I went into index funds):

    In 2013, we are looking for three macro events to occur:

    1. We expect to see stronger growth outside the U.S.
    2. We see no motive for a rise in interest rates.
    3. We anticipate a soft weakening of the U.S. dollar.

    This scenario should be good for U.S. equity returns.

    Lance Roberts (via Zero Hedge (move past the unfortunate finger picture - I give only the bottom line but it's a good read - short and (bitter) sweet)):

    If we average out the probabilities between the two scenarios stated abovewe find that we are facing a 60.5% chance of a negative return year with an average loss of -12.5%.

    While statistics say that 2013 leans more heavily towards negative returns -the final outcome will have much to do with a common theme you will seethroughout this report today – the resolution of the “fiscal cliff” and “debt ceiling” debates. Regardless, our suspicion is along the way it will be a fairly bumpy ride.

    Feeding directly into the Lance Roberts scenario:

    Wall Street's top strategists have been releasing their 2013 outlooks, and the sentiment has been overwhelmingly bullish. Barron's recent survey of strategists yielded no one who expected stocks to fall in 2013.

    1. Jeff Grundlach:

      The presentation, titled "Year Of The Snake," covered Gundlach's outlook for the global economy and financial markets.

      His closing remarks say it all: "Don't expect the stability of 2012 to endure in 2013."

      What’s Next? Our Best Guess Is Slow Growth:

      In the beginning of 2011, the IMF issued growth forecasts for various regions of the world for 2012. Together, they resulted in average growth of 4.51%. The EU represents about 20% of world GDP. If you multiply that by the IMF’s projected growth rate for the EU of 2.08%, the EU would have contributed 0.42% to GDP in 2012. Although the IMF numbers are no longer a viable forecast, they can provide a framework
      for a more plausible outcome.

      For example, assume the EU grows at only half the IMF’s projected rate. Its contribution would drop to 0.21% but the combined world growth would still be in excess of 4%. Further, what if growth in all the key regions of the world came in at half the IMF’s forecasted rate? Under that scenario, the hypothetical world growth rate would still amount to 2.25% (Exhibit 10, Scenario A). Not great but far from recession territory.

      To assume an even worse scenario, what if Europe enters recession and GDP there contracts by -2%, while growth in the other regions is only moderate? Even in that case, economic growth would remain positive (Exhibit 10, Scenario B). In our view, slow growth is the likely glide path for 2012.

      Santa Claus Rally:

      So another indicator to watch for is the so-called Santa Claus rally. Yale Hirsch of The Stock Trader's Almanac looked at the last five trading days of the year plus the first two of the new year. Since 1950, those seven days have averaged a 1.5 percent gain in stock prices (an annualized rate of over 50 percent). He also found that this Santa Claus rally often predicts the next year's market. If the Santa Claus rally arrives on schedule, it's a good sign. If it doesn't, then the following year often turns bearish.

    2. Finally, my guy Jim Paulsen of Wells Capital Management:

      We expect 2013 to deliver a fifth consecutive year of positive equity returns. In the last four years, the S&P 500 has produced almost a 15 percent annualized total return (compared to only about a 6 percent annualized return from long-term government bonds and while inflation only annualized 2.3 percent) despite a cultural mindset dominated by numerous fears and widespread doubts which chronically warned investors to be careful. That is, the bull market recovery has thus far climbed a perpetual wall of worry.

      Next year, however, a slow but steady rise in confidence will likely drive the S&P 500 above its previous all-time high of 1565 and perhaps even as high as 1700 sometime during the year. Although earnings may only rise modestly, improved equity valuations, pushed higher by a more confident investor with an elongating horizon, should prove the primary catalyst for the stock market. Moreover, improved confidence may also finally bring havoc to the bond market. Rising yields could result in negative bond returns encouraging a reallocation of mutual fund flows back toward equities.

      Tony Crescenzi of Pimco would disagree, but ...

    3. The Mitch Zacks newsletter is not available on-line but I can paste the entire piece upon request.

    4. Ya gottal luv the parsing of the tea leaves and entrails these folk do...

      bet the ranch!

    5. Please do, the more info the better.

    6. As per request, the rest of Mitch Zacks' analysis:


      U.S. and Global Growth in 2013

      The world GDP growth rate looks to be 3.3% in 2012, and 3.2% in 2013. For the U.S., expectations are for 2.3% growth in 2012 and 2.0% in 2013. The language of a ‘muddle-through economy’ makes sense here, but overall the U.S. economy will be fine in 2013.

      However, other developed economies appear to be set for a struggle. Pessimism is consistent across all other developed regions outside the U.S., with the height of this pessimism in Europe, which accounts for about 15% to 20% of the world’s GDP. The consensus in Europe is just 0.1% growth in 2013. Following those pessimistic lines, Japan may record a 0.8% growth rate in 2013, and could possibly fall into a recession.

      China and India are expected to grow at a much faster rate. Forecasts expect 6.6% growth for India, and 8.0% growth for China. In simple terms, forecasters believe China will turn around, and India will regain its high growth path.

      How will the equity market respond? Top line company revenues flow directly from nominal GDP growth rates. For example, 3.3% GDP growth and a 2.5% rate of inflation together add up to 5% to 6% top line revenue growth for a multi-national company.

      If P/E multiples do not contract, then equities will go up on the back of this nominal growth outlook. In other words, we think the global and U.S. GDP growth forecasts imply that 2013 should be a positive year for the equity markets.

      Interest Rates

      We think short interest rates will remain low for years. The short end of the U.S. treasury yield curve is at 0.2%, while the 5-year is at 0.72% -- very little difference. The 5-year risk-free rate is so low that it implies it might be 5 more years before we see any rise in treasury rates.

      Meanwhile, the 30-year Treasury bond is effectively offering a 3% coupon. However, with long-term inflation at around 2.0% to 2.5% a year, there is no real yield available for long-term bonds either. The Fed continues to buy up long-end debt in the mortgage markets, and this is keeping the long-end artificially low.

      Short and long end monetary stimulus has to end, and when it does, it may cause rates to rise dramatically, but this would occur at some point in the distant future.

      With an anchored low interest rate environment, investors are forced to take risk, which could lead to a higher P/E multiple on stocks. In other words, continued low interest rates will push investors out of the safe places and into the world’s monetary systems.


      Essentially Jim Paulsen's "risk on" argument. As I wrote above, Tony Crescenzi says: No Bubble in Bonds

      Fears of a bubble in bonds are overblown for a few reasons, PIMCO Executive Vice President, Market Strategist and Portfolio Manager Tony Crescenzi said Tuesday on CNBC.

      "Can you imagine a demographically older population wanting to going down in the capital structure, which is to say to take more risk? We can't," he said on "Fast Money."

    7. Short version being, barring another crash, it's unlikely that the next few years will present an obvious buy-in point, whether you consider yourself an informed amateur or a market professional.

    8. Don't take chances. Throw darts!


    9. All market professionals are informed amateurs.

      But the darts are informed by the more reliable iron glad laws of chance.

    10. Just buy a really good municipal bond somewhere and call it a day.

  25. Our Man Who Would Be Dictator Continues His Ways -


    Nice photo of Hitler and Stalin with headline.

    1. Impeachment hearings would already be in progress if this country resembled what it was just Thirty years ago.
      We've gone to hell in a welfare basket.

  26. January 9, 2013
    Teachers Union Head: Kill the Rich
    Thomas Lifson

    In a December 2nd speech just recently made public, Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union, placed mass murder on the table as a political tactic for union movement. Carefully steering clear of actually calling for violence, Ms. Lewis noted that in the past, union leaders had not shied away from advocating killing the rich. She also noted that conditions today, in her view, are reminiscent of that same era. But the time is not ready, yet. From the Chicagoist website:

    "The labor leaders of that time, though, were ready to kill. They were. They were just - off with their heads. They were seriously talking about that."

    The comment drew laughs and some scattered applause before Lewis added, "I don't think we're at that point. The key is that they think nothing of killing us. They think nothing about putting us in harm's way. They think nothing about lethal working conditions."

    The Daily Caller describes what happened next:

    Once the laughter subsided, Lewis clarified that she didn't think today's unions were "at that point." She did maintain, however, that rich people are guilty of endorsing violence against teachers.

    "The thing is, [the rich] think nothing about killing us," she said. "They think nothing about putting our people in harm's way. They think nothing about lethal working conditions."

    She cited the fact that not all Chicago schools have air conditioning as evidence that the union's opponents want teachers to work in dangerous conditions.

    The is laughable on its face. Air conditioning is night a civil right, and Chicago very rarely experiences dangerous levels of heat.

    Though as Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit noted,

    Well, that is dangerous when you're morbidly obese, I guess. (See photo)

    Lewis's remarks are part of a disturbing pattern of behavior by members of the far left. They are beginning the process of legitimizing calls for violence against their political opponents. The unthinkable is made thinkable when leaders and public figures speak of the legitimacy of political violence. The stance of lewis here is typical. The rich deserve it because they have been doing these things to us forever. And they are preparing to do the same to us again: "They're gonna put ya'all back in chains." So any violence from the left becomes a response to alleged violence from the right.

    Rush Limbaugh gets it:

    We'd play these sound bites, if we had them, 10/15 years ago, and we'd sit here and laugh, and we would joke about it, and I would make some comment about how, "You know, folks, people really say this, but nobody is actually gonna believe this. This is so outrageous, it's so over the top, talking about killing the rich." And I was wrong 10/15 years ago. They do respond positively.

    She does mean it, and so do people in the audience.

    They do have this degree of hatred and resentment, and it is being ginned up by people like Karen Lewis, and it is something that Obama is playing off of, and it is something Obama is using to advance his agenda. "Do not think for a minute the wealthy are ever gonna allow you to legislate their riches away from them." Well, what does that mean? It means that the civilized way to go about this would be to pass laws taking money away from the rich. But she's upset the rich aren't just gonna sit there and let that happen.

    So we're maybe gonna have to take more drastic action.

    Barely disguised, the Left is mobilizing an alienated proletariate, led by what they have for almost a century regarded as the revolutionary vanguard of America, blacks. The predicates have been put into place, and it is time to disarm the citizenry.

    Read more:
    Follow us: @AmericanThinker on Twitter | AmericanThinker on Facebook

    1. I wonder if Ash might qualify for 'the treatment', what with his investments, his yacht, his travels, his golf clubs.

      I certainly hope not. And I truly mean that.

      I'm immune. No yacht, travel once maybe in ten years over the last forty years, no paper investments, and I drive a ten year old piece of crap with 230,000 miles on it. Though the wife is buying a new one, that I can't drive, at $300/month over 6 years or something.


      Thankfully I'm out of here before things heat up.

  27. 63% of homicides are by Gun (49% by handgun.)


    1. I believe that.

      In Rwanda millions were killed by machete.

      If there is a will there's a way.

  28. Remember when AIG took a $182 billion bailout only to turn around and hand out seven-figure bonuses to the same guys who tanked their company?

    Grab the pitchforks — it gets better.

    Now the insurance organization might join a lawsuit against the U.S. government over the terms of the bailout — saying the deal that saved the company cheated shareholders.

    Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner — who faced calls for his firing over the AIG bailout — and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke are furious, according to one Democratic lawyer. Other officials inside the agencies were angered by the news, too, sources in the department told POLITICO.

    Neil Barofsky, former inspector general for the Wall Street bailout said AIG’s possible lawsuit would be a “giant middle finger to the taxpayer.”

    Read more:

  29. A breakthrough in the efficiency of LEDs has been made thanks to new research that investigated how fireflies create their light. By utilizing a newly discovered pattern of jagged scales on the fireflies’ abdomens, LEDs 55% more efficient than previous designs have been created.
    Clean Technica (


    Clickable Link

  30. As vice president, Gore had cast a 1994 Senate tie-breaking vote in favor of ethanol mandates, but has subsequently admitted regrets. He stated four years later that, “One of the reasons I made that mistake is that I paid particular attention to the farmers in my home state of Tennessee, and I had certain fondness of the farmers in the state of Iowa because I was about to run for president”.


    Wunnerwunnerwunnerful to hear Gorelioni coming 'clean about green'.

    Al Gore's Oil-Fueled Al-Jazeera Deal Follows A String Of Green Energy Fiascos

    Big List of Disasters Included!!

    Happy reading.

  31. Anonymous Wed Jan 09, 09:30:00 AM EST
    Hagel is a Israel hating, gay hating homophobe.

    He will fit in with the rest of the world and Obama.

    The very fact that American Jewish groups are combating Mr. Hagel's appointment subscribes to his previous claim that the Senate is infiltrated with Israeli supporters, either the Senators (Republicans) themselves or the lobby groups they support.

    That any candidate for any office in the US must support Israel at any cost is preposterous. This has made Israel thuggish in its negotiations with Fatah or Hamas.

    When Israel talks about give and take, it’s the Palestinians who have to give and Israel to take. Sounds like the Republicans in the US Congress, doesn’t it? No wonder they support Israel at any cost (borne by the American taxpayer and American lives, of course).

    1. Total nonsense.

      You recall the agreements the 'Palestinians' have turned down?

      The very fact that American Jewish groups are combating Mr. Hagel's appointment subscribes to his previous claim that the Senate is infiltrated with Israeli supporters

      Total bullshit.

      Where do you come up with this stuff?

      You think the staffs of my Idaho Senators are 'infiltrated' with Israelis or their supporters?

      You could, but you won't, go live in 'Palestine' yourself, then try Israel, and see which you like better.

      It would be a sanity test. If you were to choose 'Palestine' you need help.

    2. No, I will not be going to Palestine, Israel or Idaho. If you think that it is total bullshit, pull your head out of your ass and check that Emergency Committee for Israel website. Here are a few examples:

      "Today the Emergency Committee for Israel released "Extreme," a 30-second TV ad that highlights Wisconsin Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin's troubling foreign policy record.

      In a significant buy, the spot will air hundreds of times statewide over the next two weeks on cable and broadcast television, including during Green Bay Packers games."

      "With news reports suggesting former Senator Chuck Hagel may be nominated for the job of Secretary of Defense, today the Emergency Committee for Israel released "Not An Option," a 30-second TV ad that highlights Hagel's troubling record on Iran. The ad will air on cable this Thursday and Friday throughout the Washington DC area.”

      (troubling) (troubling) (troubling)

      Their “troubled records" on these candidates boils down to merely "not supporting Israel enough"


    3. Thank sweet Jesu you are not coming to Idaho.

      That is good gospel news indeed.

      We have too many morons moving in here as it is.


    'The president is going to act'...
    Clinton Turns Tech Speech Into Gun Rant...
    Iowa lawmaker calls for confiscation...
    CT lawmaker calls for background checks to buy ammo...
    Gun sales soar in Atlanta...
    'Folks are grabbing just about any gun they can get their hands on'...drudge

    CT lawmaker calls for background checks to buy ammo...

    We had that once, after the Kennedy assassination, for a while.

    I recall buying .22 shells once, still a 'minor', under 21, and the older dude was messing with the paper work, and finally said, "fuck it (his words) this is insane", threw the paper work away, and slammed the .22 shell boxes in my hands, and said, "there, sold".

  33. Dear Jenny,

    I dont know you enough to be real.

    But you are a twit.

    You really dont KNOW the issues do you?

    Your statement show your lack of knowledge....

    You say : "The very fact that American Jewish groups are combating Mr. Hagel's appointment subscribes to his previous claim that the Senate is infiltrated with Israeli supporters"

    Why American Jewish groups by and large have voted for and supported Obama? Hagel has stated points about Iran, Hezbollah & Hamas that are out of the mainstream for anyone INCLUDING Obama.

    Maybe the Senate and the House actually are correct on supporting Israel over jihadists Nazis?

    Maybe if you actually read the legislation that the "Pro-Israel" puts forth you'd understand how PRO-American Interests these points actually are.

    you go on to say...

    "US must support Israel at any cost is preposterous"

    Please show me ONE example that Israel gets what it wants at any cost? Please...

    From George Bush's Baker and his nasty attitudes to Israel, to George Bush Jr's calling for a SOVEREIGN, Contigious state (something America isnt even... (remember Alaska?) Guam, Puerto Rico?

    From the sale of Awacs to the Saudis, to arming Hezbollah with APC and millions in rounds of ammo?

    From USA pushing Israel to give up land for a handjob?

    or how about the USA screwing israel in Lebanon and stopping them from killing Arafat?

    Or how about the USA deducting money from aid against israel's building of settlements?

    I could go on for hours...

    But the point is that the Senate and the House AND the President doesnt support Israel at any cost. you saying it? shows your are a moron.

    Now let's continue...

    "This has made Israel thuggish in its negotiations with Fatah or Hamas. "

    Israel is "thuggish" against criminal terrorist gangs...

    How does America negotiate with Alqueda?

    With milk and cookies?

    Or is it one standard for Israel, no standards for anyone else...

    Moving on...

    More propaganda...

    "When Israel talks about give and take, it’s the Palestinians who have to give and Israel to take. "

    Wow... you are a twit...

    Your last one is the best whopper you have lied about so far..

    "No wonder they support Israel at any cost (borne by the American taxpayer and American lives, of course)."

    Americans dont fight protecting Israel you asshole... israel does get aid (85% spent in America) but America has spent 1000 times more on protecting arabs, germans, italians and such, and died doing so...

    So Jenny?

    Go fuck yourself

    1. Her ignorance of the history, the facts and all are totally on display there.

      I call for her to move to 'Palestine', learn a thing or two, then back to us, if she is still alive.

    2. I hope Jenny's kids all marry Palestinians.

      It would serve her right...

  34. By the way, Rufus, I was thinking of your picture of the little kid starving last night. A well done picture to be sure. What that picture really depicts is not an abandonment by 'God' however you may define that, but an abandonment by a human support system. But not totally, because the photographer was a few feet away. If the photographer didn't walk that mile to the UN Relief Station, he should have shot himself.

    We live in a real world, not a rose garden, whoever has said that 'God' promised anyone that?, and we should deal with it as best we can.

    No one claims to have been abandoned by 'God' on the veranda with the martini in hand. Or in Mississippi with beer in hand before the computer. I have yet to hear you complain about being abandoned by 'God' when you are in your cups.

  35. I remember that thanks in part to Hagel, the Israeli Iron Dome system that shot down over half the Hamas rockets in recent cross-border skirmishes was bought and paid for by American taxpayers, with the Israeli government only shelling out after all development costs had been paid with American aid.

    This is par for the course and all your hysteria indicates to me and others that it hits so close to the truth that you need to squeal.

    This will be a litmus test of the degree to which Israel controls US foreign policy.

    Kristol, the Neocon, has set up a website intended to organize opinion against his appointment. Clearly he is regarded as insufficiently obedient to Israel's wishes.

    Half of the US Congress represents Israel, Democrats and Republicans alike. It is quite amazing the degree to which millions of Americans are willing to subordinate American foreign policy to the wishes of a renegade foreign nation.

    1. Do you remember why the Iron Dome system was needed in the first place?

    2. Could it have anything to do with missiles raining down on Israeli civilians with a good deal of regularity from folks who are pledged to kill the Jews?

      Or, did it just happen?

    3. Dear Jenny, again Fuck you....

      The initial funding and development of the Iron Dome system was provided and undertaken by Israel

    4. Subsequently, funding for an additional eight Iron Dome systems—along with funding for a supply of interception missiles—is currently being provided by the United States, with two of these additional systems having been delivered by 2012.[28] Funding for the production and deployment of these additional Iron Dome batteries and interceptor missiles was approved by the United States Congress, after being requested by President Obama in 2010.

      So only AFTER Israel INVENTED IT and deployed it did the USA provide cash (about 200 million) for additional batteries.

    5. In May 2010, "The president recognizes the threat missiles and rockets fired by Hamas and Hezbollah pose to Israelis, and has therefore decided to seek funding from Congress to support the production of Israel's short range rocket defense system called Iron Dome." This would be the first direct U.S. investment in the project. A few days later, on 20 May 2010, the U.S. House of Representatives approved the funding in a 410–4 vote

      Are you reading this Jenny.... 410-4 vote for a DEFENSIVE weapon against terrorists...

      Not how America rolls they just use drones and kill wedding parties and tons of civilians to get at a few bad guys...

    6. In exchange for the second tranche of deployment funding, the United States is asking Israel for access to, and a stake in, elements of the system's technology.[36]

      Hmmmm Jenny, Israel is helping protect America...

      Shove that up your pie hole twit...


    The Top 10 Funniest ‘Right-Sided’ Political Videos of 2012
    What's your favorite?

  37. "If There Are 17 Billion Earth-Sized Worlds In Our Galaxy, the Universe Is Bubbling With Life"

    Not necessarily.

  38. Save your breath Jenny, you are debating dumb and way dumber.

    1. thanks doug...

      I always thought you had a brain on these issues...

      Now I hope a palestinian marries one of your kids too....

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Make certain Dear Readers that you understand that is doug S. whoever that person is, and not that good, intelligent and humorous man Doug, who lives in Hawaii.

    4. OH that explains it...


      All these fakers and their fake names...

      Reminds me of the lesbian who wasnt a lesbian who had more names and personas than Al Gore has Carbon Tax Credits

  39. Think of it this way, Jenny. You've got Ahmadinejad and the Iranians mullahs on your side.

    1. Jenny is a twit. I pray someday her grandkids will be forced to wear a burka.

    2. Whatever "God" you would make that prayer to, please keep him out of my town.

    3. He's the Mayor of Empty Bucket, Mississippi, a dignified and responsible position.

  40. January 9, 2013
    Benghazigate: The Cover-Up Continues
    By Bill Schanefelt

    Long article about the lies and deceptions of Obama, Hillary and Company. But very good.

    Benghazigate - The scandal Rufus doesn't want to talk about.

  41. WOW... America demands return on AID investment from Israel!!!

    Co-production with the United States

    With the United States on track to greatly increase funding for Iron Dome, there have been calls for technology transfer and co-production of Iron Dome in the United States. Just as the US and Israel share co-production of the Arrow III missile system, with Boeing manufacturing 40–50 percent of the production content, there has been support in the U.S. Congress, media and think tanks in favor of co-production.[40] The U.S. House of Representatives included report language in its FY-2013 Defense Authorization Act supporting Iron Dome with $680 million but also instructing that the Director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, Lt. Gen. Patrick O'Reilly, "should explore any opportunity to enter into co-production of the Iron Dome system with Israel, in light of the significant U.S. investment in this system."[41] There are media reports that the Pentagon is requesting similar language in the Senate Defense Authorization Act as well as the respective House and Senate defense appropriations bills for 2013.[42] Adding Iron Dome to the list of high-tech military programs built jointly by both nations would help further strengthen ties between Israel and America.[43]

    So America is willing to provide aid to Israel, with the condition that Israel SHARE technology and allow America to co-produce it!

    Actually I love the IDEA.

    Now for all of those others that receive billions and hundreds of millions in aid what "shared" technology will the Palestinians, the Egyptians, Lebanese, Jordanians, Saudis, Quatarians, Libyians give to the USA?

    Oh that's right, one standard for Israel, no standards for anyone else....

    So maybe Jenny, Israel is a SPECIAL ally to the USA, whether you see it, like or not...

    The truth? Israel is an American value and interest.

    Or at least it used to be before Obama and company came on the scene...

  42. ANd does Jenny have a former name?

  43. Hagel declared himself an “American senator, not an Israeli senator."



    Who does he think he is? His priorities are horribly skewed. And he referred to the Israel lobby as "the Jewish lobby." But Netanyahu is requiring the Palestinians to declare Israel "the Jewish state." Does that mean that Netanyahu supports Senator Hagel?

  44. Whoever Jenny is, she has a brain.

  45. Hi Tom!

    Nice splicing of words and meanings.

    I see your a twit also....

    Maybe if YOU had a brain you would understand the issue...

    But no hope for people like you...

    I just hope you live next to a nice jihadist someday...

  46. Twit? Is that your argument?

    Maybe we should have a fact finding exercise in the form of a referendum in the USA giving factual information on what the USA does to support Israel and what it gets in return

    America's interests are not identical to those of Israel.
    Americans by and large can & will never qualify for Israeli citizenship.
    Why does this one nation have the right to interfere in the domestic affairs of the USA?
    And why do we tolerate it?

    1. Actually, yes you are a twit.

      you state: Maybe we should have a fact finding exercise in the form of a referendum in the USA giving factual information on what the USA does to support Israel and what it gets in return

      Why? ANY point that prove's that Israel helps, supports or enhances America will be cast aside by you and your fold...

      you state: America's interests are not identical to those of Israel.

      Who ever said identical? But that does not negate the "specialness" of the America/Israel relationship.

      You continue: Americans by and large can & will never qualify for Israeli citizenship.

      So? is there a point there? Why do you have a different standard for Israel than others?

      And you again: Why does this one nation have the right to interfere in the domestic affairs of the USA?

      Why does the USA have the right to interfere with the domestic affairs of most of the world, including Israel?

      and lastly: And why do we tolerate it?

      I suppose you advocate FOR Jews, loyality oaths and or deportation or execution of those Jews that do not prove themselves "American" enough????

      pearls before swine... you are a twit

    2. So Tom and Jenny are getting hitched...

      They will set up the "compound" with the sign that says...

      "Keep Out Kikes"

      I can feel the love...

    3. Tom and Jenny getting hitched? I am not going back to read this news, but surely this is a match made somewhere else than in heaven.

    4. "Americans by and large can & will never qualify for Israeli citizenship"


      To the best of my knowledge, several of Michael Medved's family became Israeli Citizens.

      Did they get a special waiver?

    5. doug, thousands of Americans of many faiths apply and get citizenship in Israel.

      But "by and large" Americans, which now number 312 million will never qualify for Israeli Citizenship.

      Nor could they fit...

  47. Religious Right, Armageddon, God on a White Horse, all kinds of silly shit I suppose.

    Just one more reason that I hate all religions.

    1. God rides a white horse?

      Way cool, MY G-d doesnt even have legs...

    2. Luke 9:5 (1611 King James Bible)

      And whosoeuer will not receiue you, when ye goe out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feete, for a testimonie against them.

      This is a kind of take off on pearls before swine, Rufus.

      In this understanding, you would be the swine, and the pearls would be the proffered knowledge.

      Another way of thinking of it is through the lens of the monomyth, where the Hero comes back, and instead of trying to share the boon of a rise in consciousness and knowledge, like Jesus, and getting crucified for it by people like you, the Hero decides to say 'fuck it, the billies would never understand anyway' and heads for the forest to watch the monkeys play, 'until his body drops off like a leaf yellowing to its fall in autumn.'

      Jesus could be quite fierce, and, is often said, only passes by once.


    3. God rides a white horse?

      Way cool, MY G-d doesnt even have legs...

      Well, if we have to think anthropologically, my daughter might buy into this.


    4. Why not just call it what it is "The King James Tall Tale for the Masses."

    5. As opposed to all those other iterations of the tall tale.

    6. Because, Rufus, that is not what it is. If a fool like you looks into a great book, nobody expects a genius to look back out. And the 'New Testament' is a kind of almost late thought addendum to the main body of it, which the Jews of course reject for various reasons of their own. It is packed with all sorts of meanings, histories, parables, insights, wisdoms off all sorts, plus war stories, romances, sinning off all describes, even among the Jewish heroes themselves(!) none of which of course means squat to a person like yourself.

    7. By the way I am well aware it was the Romans that crucified Jesus, and not some ignorant mass of folks. It is just thought of that way is so much writing, ignorance crucifying knowledge.

    8. It's bullshit, and you damned well know it. Tall tales told by itinerant carnies. They probably had a wagon following them around selling cobra penis arthritis treatments, or somesuch.

    9. And, no, it wouldn't have been hillbillies like me that did the crucifying. We'd a been sticking around for the likker, and the hootchie-kootchie girls.

    10. .

      Which brings us back to the subject of Deuce's post.

      The author merely speculates as we all do. 79,900 billion inhabited planets? Why not add three or six or ten zeros, or subtract three for that matter? It's all speculation and frankly 100% likely that none alive today will ever know the answer in this lifetime, not before we are forced to take that giant step into the afterlife or nothingness or the void depending on you philosophical persuasion.

      Our personal views on what happens after the big step over or on what existed if anything before the Big Bang is just speculation. We can add in hope to comfort us or faith to add some certainty on an individual basis but I would ‘speculate’ that even the most ardent believer when the time finally arrives will admit it is all speculation.

      We just don't know.

      Therefore, I will speculate further and offer up Quirk's Binary Fission and Mitosis Theory of the Universe.

      The seeds of this theory came to me while watching a series on public TV, this particular episode dealing with nothingness, black matter, black energy, etc. Rather than go into my thoughts on our universe at both the quantum and the cosmic levels let me just jump the main point of the theory.

      Quirk's Binary Fission and Mitosis Theory of the Universe assumes our universe is a living organism: that quantum analysis is restricted by the inadequacy of our measuring devices and that in fact the various quantum particles that constitute the building blocks of matter continue on becoming infinitely smaller; that our visible universe is merely one cell in a gigantic, growing hyperverse; and that the Big Bang was merely the continuing process of cell division within this living organism we know as the cosmos.

      The formal paper explaining this theory is not complete at this point but I am willing to accept questions at this time.


    11. Could somebody just kill me first?


    12. Approximately how many pages will it be when finished?

    13. That theory seems familiar.

      You guys do have "Medical Marijuana" up there, right?

    14. You could try to think of it this way, Rufus. God just got no time for ya.

      Too busy elsewhere.

    15. I took a peak at that Africa series on-line. The neck-butting giraffe fight was ... spectacular, the best word I can come up with, especially the way the "old buck" ducked and struck. Reminds me of the Movie "Last Rights of Joe May" with Dennis Farino (and the handsome dog, Dino Farino).

    16. .

      I only answer serious questions.

      Approximately how many pages will it be when finished?

      I suspect the broad outlines of the theory could be laid out in a comic book sized compendium; however, the scientific references would likely expand the total volume exponentially. Once I get to defending the theory against it's critics, the total volume could challenge Brittanica in length. Of course, that is just speculation on my part.


    17. that our visible universe is merely one cell in a gigantic, growing hyperverse; and that the Big Bang was merely the continuing process of cell division within this living organism we know as the cosmos.

      You fraud, that is really old stuff. You are no better Joe Biden.

      We all know that every decision we take creates a new universe.

      The question I have is, what discount rate are you offering for your newest effort at plagiarism, and do you take payments, or is it cash only so you can skip town?

    18. Quirk's source here, disguised a little -

      Resolved Question
      Show me another »
      If a parallel universe is created each time I make a decision, is it for decisions I don't make as well?

    19. Could somebody just kill me first?


      Yes, I volunteer.

      But I need to speak to my lawyers first, and settle upon the proper venue.

    20. .

      Quirk's source here, disguised a little

      I said I would respond to critics not buffoons, Bobbo. I speak of the physical universe and you speak of the wandering miasma of the mind. Go revisit that list of mental disorders DRR put up and I'm sure you will quickly find the category you fall into.

      Prophets and poets, philosophers and pedagogues. You will seek comfort anywhere you can find it as you approach the quickly forming white light.


    21. I speak of the physical universe and you speak of the wandering miasma of the mind

      No, no, no, you have it wrongo, fraudo. These are real physical universes multiplying at warp. You simply lack the esemplastic imaginative faculty to mold the concept into one, so's to deal with it.

      Payments, or cash?

    22. Honestly Quirk, you could have done a little better than Yahoo Answers.

    23. .

      Honestly Quirk, you could have done a little better than Yahoo Answers.

      As could you, Bobbo. The fact that you are so credulous as to believe anything you are told or read is telling. Luckily, it appears you restrict yourself to American Thinker and Yahoo Answers and not Animal Planet otherwise you would be regaling us with stories of the Idaho Sasquatch and crypto-biological children stories.

      As a minstral you are entertaining but to be taken seriously you will need to become a little more reality based (admittedly, unlikely at this stage of your life, but still...just saying).


    24. What I am certain of, Dear Sir, is that there is a Judgement at Death.

      After that there may be Life.

      I pray that you, Sir, shall meditate upon these things in the privacy of your being.

    25. By the way, Quirko, I think I've scored a job off the coast of Coos Bay, Oregon. You up for a little second mate money? I know you're thin.

    26. .

      What I am certain of, Dear Sir, is that there is a Judgement at Death.

      After that there may be Life.

      I don't begrudge you that belief. In fact, I am envious of the comfort it gives. But as I said above, we won't really 'know' until we take that final step.

      As for the Oregon trip, I don't go to states in the US that don't have reciprocity agreements with Michigan.


  48. BTW, there is an extraordinary seris running on (Disc, I think) Africa. If you happen to surf across it, you might want to watch a few minutes. You might get hooked.

  49. 75 percent of Wisconsin's share of the Trillion dollar stimulus went to save the jobs, salaries, and benefits of teachers and other public sector unionistas.

    A good chunk then got recycled back to the Obama Campaign and other Democrats.
    Their support getting out the vote never waivered.

    A closed system run on other people's money.

    Some people profit, some don't approve, others are oblivious.

    Rufus crows triumphantly.

    Taxpayers eat crow.

  50. PRAVDA: America, 'Never give up your guns'...drudge

    Wife and daughter were in a gun shop today. It was a mob scene in there, auto rifles at $1,800.



    If Barky issues some phoney 'executive order' concerning guns I do believe he is going to touch off a severe reaction.

    Perhaps this is what he is hoping to do.

    I am beginning to believe the man would like to declare a national emergency. Didn't think that way until recently.

  52. Rufus, my on call lawyers have gotten back to me.

    It appears it will have to take place outside of the territorial United States, at sea.

    Do you have any problem with burial at sea?


  53. On this day six years ago, Apple Inc.’s founder and visionary Steve Jobs first unveiled the iPhone.

  54. desert ratWed Jan 09, 05:34:00 AM EST

    The Nation called, but boobie did not hear.

    He has 'Selective' hearing.
    Using it he avoided Selective Service

    Just noticed this slander from the crapper from yesterday. So thought I'd answer it before I am off to bed.

    Was always in the Selective Service System. Just like millions and millions of others.

    Had student deferments until when ever it was and the draft lottery came along, and I got a high draft number. That is the whole story.

    1. I would add I went to one demonstration in those days, right after the people at Kent State were shot. That is the extent of my political involvement other than voting until my wife and I went to a Tea Party demo several years ago.

      I don't criticize those who went to Vietnam, not do I criticize those who went to Canada.

    2. I do criticize those who voluntarily went to Vietnam and use that as a hammer to hit at those who didn't volunteer to go to Vietnam, especially those who in later years, like Rufus, have come to the opinion that the whole thing was nuts.

      Give it up, crapper. Though tempted I am not going to criticize you again.

      I do wish you'd just go away again, however.

    3. The Nation called, but boobie did not hear.

      Actually, the Nation didn't call, LBJ called, and on the basis of a probably trumped up Gulf of Tonkin Incident too.

      I could say pages of other stuff about Vietnam, but it is now long ago and far away, and let the dead, and the living too, rest in some peace about it.

      And, that is it. Finished.

  55. Now we learn that some teachers in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Mississippi paid surrogates between $1,500 and $3,000 to take the Praxis exam for them, the passing of which is necessary for teacher certification in 40 states. And how challenging is this test that some would fork over a few grand to a ringer sit-in? Williams describes a couple of representative questions, writing:

    Here's a practice Praxis I math question: Which of the following is equal to a quarter-million -- 40,000, 250,000, 2,500,000, 1/4,000,000 or 4/1,000,000? The test taker is asked to click on the correct answer. A practice writing skills question is to identify the error in the following sentence: "The club members agreed that each would contribute ten days of voluntary work annually each year at the local hospital." The test taker is supposed to point out that "annually each year" is redundant.

    Where'd they get the money?

  56. Doris, you didn't, by any chance, catch the Rhinos late at night at the watering hole? Straight out of Gary Larson.

    "Midnight at the Oasis" got stuck in my head.

    They were talking earlier about "epiphanies." The Rhinos were as close to one as I've been, lately.

    1. Yes Rufus I did. The Moment was palpable.

  57. hello, that's a cool posting. I am hoping you are going to continue to choose this

    Also visit my blog - online jobs

  58. If some one needs expert view about blogging and site-building then i suggest him/her to
    go to see this website, Keep up the pleasant work.

    Feel free to surf to my website - skinception eyelasticity reviews

  59. Awesome post.

    Review my web-site ... beat makers

  60. I am extremely impressed with your writing skills and also with the layout on your weblog.
    Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself?
    Either way keep up the excellent quality writing, it is rare to see a
    nice blog like this one these days.

    My web site ... solution anti cellulite naturelle

  61. Bought chia seeds today. Following reading through the comments, I'm a little nervous. I had a in a position spoon just now with yogurt and grapes. I had two capable spoons earlier today within a protein shake. Will I be up all evening?

    Here is my web site - buy organic chia seeds bulk

  62. Indicators of Interest. Meaning she's showing indicators that she likes you... self grooming, hanging around you, pressing you, appearing at you several times.

    my web blog

  63. Pretty section of content. I just stumbled upon your site and in accession capital to
    assert that I get actually enjoyed account your blog posts.
    Any way I will be subscribing to your augment and even I achievement you
    access consistently quickly.

    my blog :: Extra resources

  64. Hi there just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let
    you know a few of the images aren't loading correctly. I'm not
    sure why but I think its a linking issue.

    I've tried it in two different browsers and both show the same results.

    Feel free to visit my website; male enhancement

  65. Have you ever thought about publishing an ebook or guest authoring on other blogs?
    I have a blog centered on the same subjects
    you discuss and would really like to have you
    share some stories/information. I know my readers would enjoy
    your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to
    send me an email.

    my web blog: stop grow ()

  66. That is a great tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Short but very precise information… Many thanks for sharing
    this one. A must read article!

    Here is my website; drop in libido after ovulation