Dec 18, 2009

Spreading Christmas cheer in Korea

Members of the Korea Association of Senior Welfare Centers pose as they launch an event to visit and give Christmas gifts to children in Seoul.

To be paid for by future generations

Police arrest drunken Santa looking for reindeer

Police in Sparta, Wisconsin (near La Crosse ) received calls about a suspicious vehicle.

One caller said a passenger dressed as Santa stumbled from the vehicle, approached several children playing in a yard and began to hug them, demanding to know where his reindeer were.

Police quickly found the vehicle, stopped it and determined the driver and Santa both were intoxicated.

The driver, Kevin Arnold, 47, of Sparta was arrested on suspicion of operating while intoxicated.

Police said Santa was identified as Thomas Arnold, 55, of Sparta, and was cited for open intoxicants.


Birthplace of Inconvenient Truth?

(click on picture to enlarge)

This photo shows Al Gore in his office. Looks a bit like my “cave” only much larger. Love the frog hanging on the wall.

Are they really a bunch of buffoons?

The Daily Telegraph says it all in a report about the Copenhagen climate summit titled, Copenhagen climate summit: 'most important paper in the world' is a glorified UN press release.

When your attempt at recreating the Congress of Vienna with a third-rate cast of extras turns into a shambles, when the data with which you have tried to terrify the world is daily exposed as ever more phony, when the blatant greed and self-interest of the participants has become obvious to all beholders, when those pesky polar bears just keep increasing and multiplying – what do you do?

The Telegraph report answers its own question:

Stop issuing three rainforests of press releases every day, change the heading to James Bond-style “Do not distribute” and “leak” a single copy, in the knowledge that human nature is programmed to interest itself in anything it imagines it is not supposed to see, whereas it would shelve the same document unread if it were distributed openly.

Yes, Gerald Warner, the writer of this report gets it!

The report talks about Al Gore, the occupant of a private house that can be seen from space, wanted to charge $1,200 to be photographed with him at Copenhagen.

The writer then makes a brilliant comparison to former British Prime Minister Chamberlain who claimed “peace in our time” waving a document signed by Hitler just days before the outbreak of World War II.

Not since Neville Chamberlain tugged a Claridge’s luncheon bill from his pocket and flourished it on the steps of the aircraft that brought him back from Munich has a worthless scrap of paper been so audaciously hyped.

More of the report can be found at the link below showing they indeed are a bunch of buffoons.


About those Zhu Zhu pet hamsters...

Below is a partial list of must-have toys we’ve overpaid for during past Christmas seasons:

Cabbage Patch Kids
Tickle Me Elmo

This year it’s Zhu Zhu the robotic pet hamster that is taking over the world -- well kid’s world’s anyway.

Are Zhu Zhu pet hamsters the Furby’s of 2009?

Their names are Patches, Chunk, PipSqueak, Mr. Squiggles, and Num Nums and they coo, purr, explore their surroundings, and respond to various stimuli.

You can even buy accessories for them. Don’t worry, they also have a sleep mode.

Committed to having the deficit

US to give $100B to developing nation climate fund

Hilary Clinton announced in Copenhagen yesterday that the United Sates would five $100 billion each year to the climate protection fund to help developing countries.

Just as the climate summit in Copenhagen was unraveling, Hillary Clinton (shown above) came to the rescue with the $100 billion dollar per year give away.

This was very charitable of her and the Obama administration, but how can they do this without congressional approval?


Dec 17, 2009

Tiger Woods wants privacy

Police arrest Amish buggy driver for DUI

Police in Lancaster County Pennsylvania arrested an Amish man on drunk driving charges over the weekend after he was found asleep in his moving buggy.

East Lampeter Township Police say 22-year-old Elmer Stoltzfoos Fisher of Paradise was slumped over and asleep in a slow-moving buggy on Sunday night.

An off-duty officer from nearby Quarryville reported seeing the horse pulling the buggy at a walking pace as it straddled the centerline.

Police say a breathalyzer test snowed Fisher’s blood-alcohol content was 0.18, more than twice the 0.08 legal limit for drivers.


The Obama Afghanistan policy

Enviros battle warming during Copenhagen blizzard

Is Mother Nature trying to send the global warmers a message?

Denmark has a maritime climate and has milder winters than its Scandinavian neighbors.

The country hasn’t had a white Christmas for 14 years and only had seven during the entire twentieth century!

But now, as if right on cue, there is a blizzard just as world leaders fly into Copenhagen today to discuss a solution to global warming.


100 reasons why climate change is natural

Is climate change natural rather than man-made?

Click here for 100 reasons climate change is natural.

Head warming tunes with iHat headphone beanie

Now you can get an iHat for your iPod or other MP3 player.

The Headphone Beanie lets you enjoy your tunes in any weather, whether you're speeding down the slopes or waiting at a bus stop.

Link here and here.

Coffee and tea may lower diabetes risk

People who drink coffee or tea have a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a review of past studies and the caffeine doesn’t seem to matter.

Researchers at the University of Sydney looked at 18 studies with more than 450,000 participants.

They found that every cup of coffee was associated with a 7 percent reduction in the risk of diabetes.

Individuals who drank three to four cups per day had an approximately 25 percent lowerrisk than those who drank between zero and two cups per day.


Copenhagen summit veering towards farce

The climate talks are at least 18 hours behind schedule as world leaders are set to arrive in Copenhagen for the grand finale of the conference.

The climate change summit in Copenhagen was in jeopardy tonight with the complex negotiations falling far behind schedule as the climate secretary, Ed Miliband, warned of a "farce".

With just two days remaining, the inability to overcome disagreements about the shape of a deal to combat global warming led to hours of inaction while outside the negotiations police clashed with protesters who broke through a security cordon but failed in an attempt to storm the conference center.

One person close to the talks said they had made no progress. "What people don't realize is that we are not really ready for when the leaders arrive to finish the conference. The talks are 18 hours late."

More here.

Report: America souring on Democrats

A Wall Street Journal report says the Democrats blues grow deeper in a new poll.

Less than a year after Inauguration Day, support for the Democratic Party continues to slump, amid a difficult economy and a wave of public discontent, according to a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll.

The findings underscored how dramatically the political landscape has changed during the Obama administration's first year. In January, despite the recession and financial crisis, voters expressed optimism about the future, the new president enjoyed soaring approval ratings, and congressional leaders promised to swiftly pass his ambitious agenda.

According to December's survey less than half of Americans approved of the job President Barack Obama was doing, marking a steeper first-year fall for this president than his recent predecessors.


Dec 16, 2009

Offbeat fashion displayed in China

A model presents a creation by graduates of the Beijing Institute of Fashion Technology during China Fashion Week.

Chaos continues at climate conference

A report at the link below says the the Copenhagen climate change conference appeares to be imploding from within and exploding from without on Wednesday.

Police fired tear gas, brandished batons and detained more than 200 protesters who tried to push through the security cordon around the Bella Center, as negotiations inside bogged down, for the second time this week, over differences between China and the West over emissions, funding issues and transparency.

The photo above shows protestors turning violent at the climate conference. Since the conference started about 1,000 protestors have been arrested.

Senator John Kerry, the highest-ranking American yet to appear at the talks, urged attendees to put aside their differences and “make Friday our day of success.”

The report says that minutes earlier -- in a surprise move that captured growing uncertainty over conference -- Denmark’s climate minister, Connie Hedegaard, stepped aside as president of the conference, handing the gavel to Danish Prime Minister Lars Rasmussen, as head of the host country.

Outside, Danish police — who have been accused of heavy-handedness by human rights groups — clashed with thousands of environmental activists who descended on the complex from a nearby train station and demanded entry to the Bella Center.

BBC video showed truncheon-bearing Danish police shoving the crowd backward as protesters gasped and covered their faces to avoid breathing tear gas.

Inside it wasn’t much better as U.N. officials revoked the credentials of about 100 accredited members of the green group Friends of the Earth for staging a series of small protests on Tuesday.

Minutes after taking the gavel, Rasmussen angrily denounced developing countries for seeking to delay consideration of the text, accusing them of focusing on "procedure, procedure, procedure."

He was immediately rebuked by a representative of China, a member of the G-77 bloc, who said moving forward too quickly was tantamount to "obstructionism" and a bullying attempt by the West.

I find it amusing that a representative of China, a country referred as a ‘developing nation’ by leaders of the climate summit, is lecturing the Danish Prime Minister and new host of the conference!

With raucous behavior inside as well as outside, the climate conference is becoming more entertaining by the day. Pop some popcorn and kick back in that recliner. Who knows what will happen between now and Friday.


Democrats to close Offutt Air Base if Sen. Nelson votes no

Democrats threaten Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson to get his vote on

According to a Senate aide, the White House is now threatening to put Nebraska's Offutt Air Force Base on the BRAC (closure) list if Nelson doesn't fall into line.

Offutt Air Force Base employs some 10,000 military and federal employees in Southeastern Nebraska.

As our source put it, this is a "naked effort by Rahm Emanuel (pictured above at the Obama Inauguration last January) and the White House to extort Nelson's vote." They are "threatening to close a base vital to national security for what?" asked the Senate staffer.

Washington Democrats will do anything to get ObamaCare passed.


Televangelist and faith healer Oral Roberts dead at 91

Oral Roberts (pictured), a pioneer in televangelism and founder of a multimillion-dollar ministry and a university that bears his name, died Tuesday. He was 91.

His “faith healing” ministry began early in his career.

He gave up a local pastorate in Enid in 1947 to enter an evangelistic ministry in Tulsa to pray for the healing of the whole person - the body, mind and spirit. The philosophy led many to call him a "faith healer," a label he rejected with the comment: "God heals - I don't."

His ministry hit upon rocky times in the 1980s. There was controversy over his City of Faith medical center, a $250 million investment that eventually folded, and Roberts' widely ridiculed proclamation that God would "call me home" if he failed to meet a fundraising goal of $8 million.

A law school he founded also folded.

He once even claimed to raise a child from the dead.


Heavy snow predicted for global warming summit

Forecast for Copenhagen Denmark issued Tuesday December 15 at 11:30 hours.

For Wednesday:
Cloudy with heavy snowfall. Maximum day temperatures around 2 degrees Celsius, minimum night temperatures around minus 3 degrees Celsius.


Gore tries to con scientists at climate summit

Al Gore has refused to debate his so-called climate science and has become accustomed to universal acceptance of his climate pronouncements.

Now that Gore is finally on the world climate stage, he has stubbed his toe. He can’t fool them in Copenhagen. Gore’s detractors will surely find this story almost too delicious to read.

Mr. Gore has become embroiled in a climate change controversy after claiming that the Arctic could be completely ice-free within five years.

Speaking at the Copenhagen climate change summit, Mr. Gore said new computer modeling suggests there is a 75 per cent chance of the entire polar ice cap melting during the summertime by 2014.

However, he faced embarrassment last night after Dr. Wieslav Maslowski, the climatologist whose work the prediction was based on, refuted his claims.

Dr. Maslowski is trampling all over Al Gore’s nicely phrased globaloney.

The Al Gore blunder follows the controversy over hacked emails from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit, which skeptics claim suggest scientists manipulated data to strengthen their argument that global warming is man-made.

More of the story here and here.

Howard Dean: kill the Senate health bill

Former Democratic leader Howard Dean (pictured) said the Senate health care bill in its current form should be scrapped.

Others agree saying the Senate health care bill is so compromised it would be better to kill it than fight for its passage.

After Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid gave in to Sen. Joe Lieberman and agreed to scrap a Medicare compromise, and with the public option already off the table, many Democrats supporting ObamaCare are giving up on the legislation.

The public option will probably be dead regardless of what happens.

More here and here.

Dec 15, 2009

St. Nicholas Day run in Budapest, Hungary

Wearing Santa Claus hats and swimming suits, people participate in a charity run on St. Nicholas' Day in Budapest, Hungary, on Dec. 6, 2009.

Entry fees of the runners were donated for the benefit of a foundation aiding patients suffering of cystic fibrosis

Lieberman to support ObamaCare if Medicare expansion removed

Sen. Joe Lieberman (pictured) says he expects to support the Democrats' health care legislation as long as any government-run insurance plan stays out of the bill.

Reid needs Lieberman's support to secure 60 votes necessary to advance the legislation in the 100-member Senate.

To win him over, Senate leaders said late Monday they were backing away from a Medicare expansion Lieberman opposed.

They already had dropped a full-blown government insurance program.

Lieberman told reporters Tuesday that if the Medicare expansion and government insurance plan are gone, "I'm going to be in a position where I can say what I've wanted to say all along: that I'm ready to vote for health care reform."


Major sponsor drops Tiger Woods

Global consulting firm Accenture has dropped Tiger Woods.

Accenture became the first of Tiger Woods' sponsors to completely cut ties with the golfer.

Accenture released a statement saying it was ending its business agreement with Woods, who had represented the company for six years.

"After careful consideration and analysis, the company has determined that he is no longer the right representative for its advertising," the statement said.


The Congressional Holiday weigh in

Democrats may lose Lieberman on health bill

Democrats in the Senate were counting on Senator Joe Lieberman’s vote on ObamaCare.

Since Lieberman’s vote is critical to the bill's prospects, the loss of the Connecticut Senators vote came as a blow to the Democrat caucus.

The photo above shows Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson (l) and Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman (r) on Face the Nation last Sunday

Lieberman said he would join Republicans in opposing health care legislation if it permits uninsured individuals as young to 55 to purchase Medicare coverage.

Senate Democrats who thought they had found a workable compromise on health care reform learned otherwise from independent Sen. Joe Lieberman over the weekend.

Lieberman expressed his opposition twice Sunday: first in an interview with CBS, and more strongly later, according to Democratic officials, in a private meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Senator Ben Nelson may also vote against the bill but for a different reason.

Lieberman’s vote is mostly to protect the private health care insurance industry. Many of these insurance companies have major offices in Connecticut.

If Nelson votes against the bill, it will be because he is thinking of his re-election in conservative Nebraska. If Nelson votes for ObamaCare, he will undoubtedly kiss is re-election chances goodbye.


Prince William to become 'Shadow' King?

The London Daily Mail claims to have a confidential document showing that the Queen is to hand over a substantial part of her public duties to Prince William (pictured) to help him prepare for the day when he becomes King.

Secret papers reveal that plans to ease the strain on the 83-year-old monarch and her 88-year-old husband, Prince Philip, are at an advanced stage.

The disclosures come despite months of denials from the Palace that the Queen was planning to step back from her official work in favor of her 27-year-old grandson.

The move will fuel rumors that the Queen believes William, rather than her son Charles, represents the best long-term interests of the monarchy.

William’s father, 61-year-old Prince Charles, has been waiting for the Queen to die so he can begin his life’s work.

And now the Queen seems to be planning to by-pass him in a “generation-skipping” succession to the British throne.

Link here and here.

Al Gore: inconvenient truth bites back

Mr. Gore (pictured) was caught up in another falsehood.

There are many kinds of truth. Al Gore was poleaxed by an inconvenient one yesterday.

Mr Gore, in a speech at the climate summit, said the latest research showed that the Arctic could be completely ice-free in five years.

In his speech, Mr. Gore told the conference: “These figures are fresh. Some of the models suggest to Dr. [Wieslav] Maslowski that there is a 75 per cent chance that the entire north polar ice cap, during the summer months, could be completely ice-free within five to seven years.

However, the climatologist whose work Mr. Gore was relying upon dropped the former Vice-President in the water with an icy blast.

Mr. Gore’s office later admitted that the 75 per cent figure was one used by Dr. Maslowksi as a “ballpark figure” several years ago in a conversation with Mr. Gore.

“It’s unclear to me how this figure was arrived at,” Dr. Maslowski said. “I would never try to estimate likelihood at anything as exact as this.”

More here.

Polls Obama and Biden Senate seats could go Republican

Polls show Democrats may lose the old Barack Obama and Joe Biden Senate seats in 2010.

President Obama and Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. won't be on the midterm ballot next year, but their former Senate seats will be, and both races are now either tossups or leaning Republican in high-visibility contests.

Mr. Obama, who was a freshman senator from Illinois when he was elected president, and Mr. Biden, who was in his sixth term as a senator from Delaware, come from states that have been running strongly Democratic in past elections.

No one doubts that Mr. Obama would have been a re-election shoo-in had he remained in the Senate and that Mr. Biden had his seat for the foreseeable future.

But in another sign of political winds that appear to be blowing against the Democrats in the 2010 cycle, Republicans and independent political analysts say the chances are at least even that their seats could be taken over by two strong Republican candidates next November, when the GOP is expected to make gains in Congress and in the state governorships.

More here.

Dec 14, 2009

Overloaded cycles in India

The cycle above is hauling nine giant empty water tanks. The cycle below is carrying dozens of empty boxes.

Mini Gandhis help celebrate birthday of Mahatma Gandhi

Last October marked the 140th birthday for Mahatma Gandhi.

The mini-Gandhis shown above helped celebrate the occasion.

Thoughts on Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address

Mr. David Wills was the principal person behind the establishment of the Soldier’s National Cemetery at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

For the dedication of the cemetery Mr. Wills asked Edward Everett to give the principal speech at the ceremony.

Mr. Everett was a politician and former President of Harvard University. He was a noted orator and seemed a perfect candidate to deliver an address dedicating the cemetery.

Mr. Wills also asked President Lincoln to say a few words at the dedication. The letter to the President read:

"It is the desire that, after the Oration, you, as Chief Executive of the nation, formally set apart these grounds to their sacred use by a few appropriate remarks."

Mr. Wills was President Lincoln's host while in Gettysburg, and the now immortal Gettysburg Address was completed from its rough draft in the Wills home.

At the dedication ceremony Edward Everett gave a 13,607-word speech that went on for nearly two hours.

Abraham Lincoln followed with a speech of only 269 words and lasted barely two minutes.

Lincoln was not a dynamic orator. In those years before loudspeakers, anyone making an outdoor speech had to speak loudly.

Some historians have suggested that Lincoln’s voice became a bit high-pitched when speaking loudly. Also, he had the strange habit of throwing his arms in the air while flexing his knees to make a point during a speech.

One eyewitness said the speech was followed by a “dignified silence.” A noted historian said the applause was delayed, scattered, and “barely polite.”

It is not surprising then to learn of negative reactions to the Lincoln Gettysburg Address.

Edward Everett, however, praised Lincoln saying, “I should be glad if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes.”

The Abraham Lincoln speech at Gettysburg is now considered one of the most famous speeches in American history. It emboldened the Union cause during the Civil War with perhaps the most stirring words ever spoken.

Nuclear Monday number four

Don’t ya just hate it when they give you a medical procedure that you can’t pronounce?

This morning it was another nuclear ventriculography. It was the fourth one in the last ten years.

They inject a radioactive isotope into a vein while taking a treadmill stress test to show how well the blood is pumping through the heart and check for clogged arteries.

I am grateful for modern medical technology, good insurance coverage and not as many stairs to climb as shown in the drawing.

Dec 13, 2009

Colorado homeless camp called Obamaville

Residents of Colorado Springs, Colo., have a mystery on their hands: Who came up with the idea to erect a sign reading “Welcome to Obamaville - Colorado's fastest growing community” on the site of a homeless tent camp in the city?


Italian PM Berlusconi bloodied in attack

An attacker hurled a statuette at Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, striking the leader in the face at the end of a rally Sunday and leaving the stunned 73-year-old media mogul with a broken nose and bloodied mouth.

Police said the 42-year-old man accused of attacking Mr. Berlusconi as he signed autographs in Milan was immediately taken into custody. The Italian leader was rushed to a hospital where he was being held overnight.

More of the story here.

Apple blocks 1,000 iPhone apps after scam surfaces

Apple has pulled the plug on more than 1,000 iPhone applications because of allegations that the developers behind them planted positive reviews about its products while using knockoffs of existing apps.

Apple has sent a clear message to any developers who try to game its iTunes App Store.

Software developer Molinker has been kicked out, along with more than 1,000 of its iPhone applications.

The Chinese developer had, according to some estimates, 1,000-plus applications in the store, most of which were copycat knockoffs of existing applications.

More of the story here.

Polls show Obama slide accelerating

The latest Rasmussen daily tracking poll shows that only twenty-three (23%) of voters say they strongly approve of Obama’s performance while forty-two percent (42%) strongly disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -19.


That’s a loss for Obama of 4% in just the last three weeks!

Previous Obama poll drop report here.

Worst poll drop for a president in 50 years here.

Latest poll drop here.

Santa and reindeer in Lapland

Santa Claus with his Reindeer and sled in Rovaniemi's Christmas theme park in Finnish Lapland.

A Gentoo penguin looks out from its pool that is a constantly chilly seven degrees Celsius and an environment that includes a light cycle that changes to replicate the Antarctic seasons, with very short days in winter and very long days in summer, at the Melbourne Aquarium

Professional demonstrators at climate summit

An Associated Press report claims that tens of thousands of protesters marched through Copenhagen during the United Nations climate summit.

This was not a grass roots protest. It appeared to be professionally organized by global warming alarmists.

The signs were obviously professionally mass produced with no appearance of grass roots spontaneity.

Organizers claimed as many as 100,000 joined the protest march. Police, however, estimated their numbers at 40,000.

A large number of the protestors must have been thugs as nearly 1,000 were detained by police when cobblestones smashed windows of the former stock exchange and Foreign Ministry buildings.