Mar 20, 2010

Hatch: House vote won’t end health issue

Republican Senator Orrin Hatch (pictured) was quoted as saying:

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives are “nuts” to think tomorrow’s vote on health-care legislation will resolve the issue.

If the measure passes, Senate Republicans have enough votes on at least two points of order to alter the measure and send it back to the House for a second round of votes.

More here.

Will the Clausen Spring Dam save Kathryn, North Dakota?

One year ago authorities went door to door warning the 55 residents of the town of Kathryn to evacuate as water carved through a nearby dam.

This year this tiny North Dakota town is facing the possibility of having to evacuate again because of flooding.

Fueled by runoff from a winter of heavy snow, water is swiftly rising behind the Clausen Springs Dam.

Kathryn's main street is shown above.

Kathryn's 55 citizens are frustrated that nothing has been done to repair or replace the damaged dam that threatens to break and inundate this blink-and-you-miss-it community, about 60 miles southwest of the state's biggest city of Fargo.

Kathryn's residents have good reason to be frustrated.

Last year $3 million was scraped together to replace the battered dam. Maybe the funding came too late but for whatever the reason, it hasn't been done and now there is a 50-50 chance the town could be flooded.


This is a good day to just relax and smell the flowers

Danny Gaither sings Forever With Jesus

Danny Gaither was the silky tenor voice in the Bill Gaither Trio for several years. He began singing with the group at the age of 18.

He was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1999.

Danny Gaither lost his battle with cancer in 2001 at the age of 62.

Listening to this Hymn by Danny Gaither is helping me through a challenging bout with Sciatica.

Mar 19, 2010

Can 250,000 sandbags save Fargo?

The Red River near Fargo, North Dakota is expected to crest on Sunday at 20 feet above the flood stage threatening low-lying homes and streets.

The weather has also been getting colder and windier.

Fargo officials said Friday that homeowners should keep their sump pumps from freezing and watch the sandbag dikes in their yards to make sure water doesn't seep through them.

The photo was taken during a previous Fargo flood.

Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker says the city has a quarter of a million sandbags in storage that are ready for use if needed.


Obama won’t campaign for ones voting no

(click on cartoon to enlarge)

The latest Toyota recall - video

Obama wants Democrats to commit political suicide for ObamaCare

Obama tells Democrats, our fates are tied to health bill!

In seeking enough votes to overhaul the nation's health care system, President Barack Obama is telling nervous Democratic lawmakers that their political fates are linked to the bill's passage, discouraging the notion that they can save themselves by opposing it, House members say.

The reality is that nearly every House Democrat from a conservative district will fall on their political swords if they vote for ObamaCare.

It seems rather obvious that Obama is pinning his own political survival on the passage of his healthcare package.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs (upper photo) said Mr. Obama has spoken with more than three dozen Democrat lawmakers this week, repeatedly sidestepped questions of whether Obama has told them his presidency's fate depends on the legislation's passage.

Such suggestions could be ticklish because all 435 House seats are up for grabs in November, whereas Obama won't face voters until 2012.

Although Senior administration adviser David Axelrod (center photo) has said, "There's not been one minute of talk around the White House about what this means for Barack Obama's presidency," other evidence shows that the passage of ObamaCare will define Obama’s presidency.

Axelrod said Obama is well aware that a president's success often builds more success and that rejection of the health proposals could make it difficult to enact other major initiatives.

Congressman Henry Waxman (lower photo) of California, a member of the House Democratic leadership has said, "Members who think they have a tough race are not going to find security in voting 'no.'" Waxman said. "Because if this bill doesn't pass, they are going to be wiped out" in November.

Waxman is referring to Democrats in the House from heavily Democrat districts.

It’s Democrats from conservative districts voting for the bill who will be, as Waxman says, be “wiped out,” changing the complexion of the House in November to a Republican majority with Nancy Pelosi removed from her position as Speaker.


The 80-20 rule alive and well on Facebook

Pareto's Principle, sometimes called the vital few and trivial many rule, observes that most things in life are not distributed evenly. A simple example is that 20% of a person's effort generates 80% of that person's results.

Another simple example: 80% of the work is done by 20% of the people.

This is more commonly known as the “80-20 rule” and is evident on Facebook where generally 80% of the entries are posted by about 20% of the members.

Parts of Detroit may go back to farmland

A Washington Examiner report asks: is deconstruction the fate of urban America?

Twelve years ago, British urban historian Sir Peter Hall wrote in “Cities in Civilization” that Detroit “has become an astonishing case of industrial dereliction; perhaps, before long, the first major industrial city in history to revert to farmland.”

Will Detroit become the first organized and orderly deconstruction of a major American city?

The “Neighborhood Revitalization Strategic Framework” plan by Detroit Mayor David Bing (pictured) envisions replacing entire neighborhoods with “Naturescapes” (meadows), “Green Thoroughfares” and “Village Hubs” that require fewer city services.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Mayor David Bing is the same Dave Bing who thrilled basketball fans with his brilliance on the basketball court during the era of Jerry West, Oscar Robertson, and Walt Frazier.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Michael Barone, writer of the Washington Examiner report at the link below says:

Houses in Detroit are now selling for an average of $13,000, and Detroit is moving back to farmland. When people ask me why I switched from liberalism to conservatism, my one-word answer is “Detroit.”


(click on picture to enlarge)

Congressman Tom Perriello: “we will keep stealing” - Video

A freshman Democrat politician says, “if you don't tie our hands, we'll keep stealing” in this one minute video.

Tom Perriello, a first term Democrat congressman, was filmed at a Tea Party near Jefferson in northeast Virginia.

Mar 18, 2010

Funny and unusual police sketches

This sketch isn’t much more useful than the old Unabomber sketches circulated in the 1980’s and 1990’s.

This sketch shows the suspect in a Portuguese kidnapping. This person is going to be difficult to find.

On second thought, the sketch may make him easier to find - just look for a person with no face.

This “graph paper killer” should be easy to find. Not too many people running around without ears.

This suspect should be easy to find. Look for a person with sparse hair plugs and a nose wider than his mouth.

ObamaCare: don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t debate - just vote yes

A Democratic staffer says House leaders tentatively plan to ignore or blur the 72-hour rule.

Democrats will to anything get ObamaCare passed even though they realize that the majority of Americans are against the bloated pork-laden bill.

The Rules Committee will meet on Saturday to set the rules for debate. Following the letter of the 72-hour rule would mean no vote before late Sunday, but Democrats have allowed themselves an out.

"The Democratic leadership has declared martial law," reports, "allowing leaders to bring legislation straight to the floor on the same legislative day." That could mean a vote as early as Saturday, with a floor debate of just four hours. The public and members of Congress would have only 48 hours or even less to examine the bill.

Nancy Pelosi said recently, “you can read the bill after it’s passed.”

The report at the link below says Democrats are in a rush for two reasons.

One, the longer they wait, the iffier their chances of assembling a majority of 216 House members.

Two, they're also in a hurry because the Senate needs a minimum of a week of floor debate to pass the expected reconciliation bill full of legislative "fixes."

With Congress set to begin its two-week Easter recess on March 26, Democratic leaders don't want members leaving town before the issue is settled, fearing a pummeling by angry constituents back home that will weaken their resolve.

Look for Democrats to abandon a promise to allow lawmakers 72 hours to read and evaluate the heath-care bill before a vote.

Can you imagine the media outcry if Republicans had tried to cram a monstrous bill like this through congress the way Democrats are doing with ObamaCare?

Instead, 90% of the media are soft-pedaling or remaining silent on the issue.

More here.

Drive a mile in his shoe - really!

Looking for the perfect way to accessorize an outfit? How about this Red Stiletto?

David Crow designed the shoe, using parts of a Honda motorcycle.

This unique vehicle took nearly four years to build. It has a fiberglass body with hand rubbed paint.

What would Imelda Marcos think?


You can still hunt polar bears and bluefin tuna per U.N.

Bans on hunting Atlantic bluefin tuna and polar bears were defeated by the U.N. Both were significant failures for environmentalists.

A U.S.-backed proposal to ban the international trade of polar bear skins, teeth and claws was defeated Thursday at a U.N. wildlife meeting over concerns it would hurt indigenous economies and arguments the practice didn't pose a significant threat to the animals.

The tuna defeat came hours after delegates rejected a U.S. proposal to ban the international sale of polar bear skins and parts, showing that economic interest at this meeting appeared to be trumping conservation. It also raised the prospect that a CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) meeting that was packed with several dozen promising proposals could end next week in failure for environmentalists.

The Americans argued that the sale of polar bears skins is compounding the loss of the animals' sea ice habitat due to climate change.

But Canada, Greenland and several indigenous communities argued the trade had little impact on the white bears population and would adversely effect their economies.

The photo above shows a polar bear on “disappearing” arctic ice and is often used by climate alarmists. Only problem is the photo was not taken in the arctic but was taken near the west central coast of Hudson Bay in the summer.


Turning Torso building in Malmö, Sweden

This unique ‘twisted’ skyscraper was designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava and completed in August 2005.

The building has nine segments of five-story pentagons that twist as it rises. The top segment is twisted ninety degrees clockwise compared to the ground floor.

The lower three segments contain offices. The upper six segments contain 147 luxury apartments.

The building has five elevators. Three for residents of the building and two are for those working in the building.


Census time - but do we really count?

(click on cartoon to enlarge)

Ho-hum ... Biden misspeaks again

From an AP report at the link below:

Vice President Joe Biden asked for God's blessing for the late mother of Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen during a White House celebration of St. Patrick's Day — except the elderly lady is very much alive.

"God rest her soul," Biden said Wednesday night as he introduced Cowen and President Barack Obama. He quickly caught himself and noted that it's Cowen's father who is no longer living. Of the prime minister's mother, Biden said, "God bless her soul."

Sometimes Biden only opens his mouth to change feet.


Mar 17, 2010

Jack Cafferty on CNN: Dems beyond sleazy on ObamaCare passage

C’mon Jack, tell us how you really feel!

Transcript is here.

Driver hits pile of boulders - video

In case you missed this on your TV News...

(click on picture to see video)

About those kids in the control tower at JFK...

We think the button he is about to push will allow the big silver plane with the blue stripe and the pointy nose to take off next.

Accuracy and professionalism in the control tower is of utmost importance.

Leprechaun Museum dedicated to Irish mythology

The new National Leprechaun Museum is a national cultural entertainment center in Dublin, Ireland.

Photo shows a child trying to climb an armchair in the museum. The oversize chair makes visitors feel very small - the size of a leprechaun.

The center takes visitors deeper into Irish and Celtic culture to discover what really lies behind the well-known tales of Irish cultural iconography - leprechauns, rainbows and pots of gold and promises to open up a fun and magical world full of fascinating folklore and enchanting stories.


Even Leprechauns can be a target

Determined to get the Kucinich vote

Is the vote of Democrat Congressman Dennis Kucinich (pictured) worth an Air Force One visit to Ohio? You bet!

A report at the link below is titled, “Kucinich in Obama's crosshairs.”

Air Force One took off from suburban Maryland today at 11:13 a.m. and landed 48 minutes later in Cleveland.

For Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) -- who says he plans to vote no on the president's health-care bill -- it must have felt like a much longer flight.

Obama invited Kucinich and undecided Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) to the ultimate pressure cooker as he tries to nail down a majority for his top domestic priority.

Obama had a pre-arranged rally of pro-Obama supporters in Strongsville, Kucinich’s suburban Cleveland district.

When Obama introduced Kucinich at the Strongsville rally, someone in the audience (an Obama plant?) called out, "Vote yes."

Obama, right on que, turned to Kucinich and asked, "Did you hear that, Dennis?”

Will it take more strong-arming? Will it take a bribe? One way or another Obama is determined to get the Kucinich vote and any others he needs to pass ObamaCare!



Kucinich caves in on ObamaCare and will vote yes as reported here.

Mar 16, 2010

MA Treasurer: ObamaCare will bankrupt country in four years

The Boston Herald reports a critical assessment of ObamaCare by Massachusetts Treasurer Tim Cahill:

“If President Obama and the Democrats repeat the mistakes of the health insurance mandate on a national level, they will bankrupt this country within four years.

It is time for the President and the Democratic leadership to go back to the drawing board and come up with a new plan that does not threaten to wipe out the American economy.”


NY Times cut 100 jobs yet paid CEO $4.9 million in 2009

Last October the New York Times announced it would cut 100 newsroom jobs -- about 8 percent of the total -- by year’s end, offering buyouts to union and non-union employees. They said they would resort to layoffs if it could not get enough people to leave voluntarily as reported in the second link below.

Today it was reported that:

An analysis by The Associated Press shows that New York Times Co. CEO Janet Robinson got roughly $4.9 million in compensation in 2009.

Robinson's base salary fell 4 percent to $962,500. But she got a bonus of about $2.3 million, four times the size of her 2008 bonus.

That’s not counting stock options. Of course stock options would not amount to much. The current price of New York Times stock is less than $12 - with a 52 week low of $4.05.

At $4.05 per share, the stock is worth less than the newsstand price of the Sunday edition, which is $5.00.

Janet Robinson’s compensation is pretty hefty for a financially floundering newspaper.

Link here and here.

Plane kills beach jogger during emergency landing

From a report at the link below:

A 38-year-old father of two was jogging and listening to his iPod when he was hit from behind and killed by a small plane making an emergency landing on the beach in Hilton Head, South Carolina.

The man died instantly when he was hit by the single-engine plane, which had lost its propeller. The pilot's vision was blocked by oil on the windshield.

Apparently the jogger did not see or hear the plane, which was basically gliding without a propeller.

The plane started leaking oil at about 13,000 feet and the pilot tried originally to make it to Hilton Head Airport.


Art car inspired by Dutch painter Piet Mondrian

Artist and fashion designer Emily Duffy of El Cerrito, California painted this 1984 Nissan Sentra. The artwork on the car was inspired by Dutch painter Piet Mondrian using simple use of lines and colors.

Duffy even made a hat, dress and purse to match the car.

- - - - - - - U P D A T E - - - - - - -

The garments, purse, etc. designed by Ms. Duffy are displayed on a mannequin in front of her “Mondrian Mobile.”


More harm from green fuels than fossil fuels

From a London times report:

Using fossil fuel in vehicles is better for the environment than so-called green fuels made from crops, according to a government study.

The findings show that the Department for Transport’s target for raising the level of biofuel in all fuel sold in Britain will result in millions of acres of forest being logged or burnt down and converted to plantations.

The study, likely to force a review of the target, concludes that some of the most commonly-used biofuel crops fail to meet the minimum sustainability standard set by the European Commission.

In this country Congress has blocked nearly all new oil exploration in the Gulf of Mexico as well as oil shale drilling in the Rocky Mountain states.

There was a big push to promote E85 fuel (85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline) a couple of years ago. It must have “bombed.” When was the last time you saw ads promoting E85?

Link to the story London Times story here.

Mar 15, 2010

Twitter now has ability to track your location

A short report at the link below says:

Twitter already reveals to the rest of the world what you're doing and what you're thinking, and now the microblogging site can let everyone know where you are as well.

This new feature was made available last week and gives Twitter users the option of including their location when they tweet by way of a tracking tool they can turn on or off.

When the tool is activated, tweets will link to a Google map showing the location of the user.

The growing trend for web services to broadcast people's whereabouts – already picked up by Foursquare, Gowalla and Loopt – is expected to be followed by Facebook as well.

Avid Twitter users have been warned to be careful about how and when they harness the power of the new technology, which works by shadowing people through their web browsers.

This is not good news for anyone on the run from the law, creditors, an estranged spouse, etc.


Smart car Big Foot

Your snooty neighbor’s Smart Car - $23,449

Cost of Big Foot conversion - $12,865

Knowing a Smart makes a lousy Big Foot - Priceless

Tearing down the house that Ruth built

Thanks for the memories...

Demolition workers tear down Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York.

Time Magazine photo Thursday, Mar. 11, 2010.

House still needing more health care votes

An Associated Press report says the Democrat's chief vote counter in the House says that right now there aren't enough votes to pass President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.

Democrat congressman James Clyburn (pictured) of South Carolina said on NBC's "Meet the Press" that "a comfort level" has been reached among the House, Senate and White House on details about the sweeping legislation.

He concedes, however, that House supporters don't have the necessary votes right now.

Sounds like Pelosi needs to cajole, threaten or bribe House members for a few more votes.


Mar 14, 2010

GOP to use amendments as a tactic

A report at the link below says Democrat leaders say they can't risk passing any amendments to the healthcare bill, even if they agree with them. If they were to pass, it would require more time and possibly more votes to marry the Senate legislation with what passed in the House.

However, that’s just what Republicans plan to do. They are crafting hundreds of amendments in hopes of tripping up the health care overhaul if Democrats scrape up the votes needed to resuscitate the long-stalled measure by week's end.

Even though Democrat leaders on Sunday conceded they didn't yet have the votes to pass President Obama's overhaul out of the House, Senate Republicans are threatening to put up hundreds of amendments - one of the few weapons in their limited arsenal - to force Democrats to take difficult votes on politically sensitive subjects.

With Democrats bribing votes in order to pass a bill that most Americans don’t want, adding amendments may be the only way for Republicans to block the massive ObamaCare bill.

More here.

Katie Spotz is youngest to row solo across Atlantic

After more than two months at sea, 22-year-old Katie Spotz became the youngest person to row across the Atlantic Ocean.

(click on map to enlarge)

She rowed her 19-foot boat named Liv on a 2,817 mile solo journey from Dakar, Senegal, on Africa’s west coast, to Guyana on the northeast coast of South America.

The journey began on January 3 and ended March 13.

She rowed to raise money and awareness for the Blue Planet Run Foundation, a nonprofit whose goal is to bring clean drinking water to the estimated 1 billion people worldwide who lack it.

Spotz rowed for as many as 10 hours a day with breaks for naps, navigation and boat maintenance. At night, she would drift aboard the specially designed ocean row boat, which had equipment including solar panels for power, a satellite phone and a laptop computer.

"I would cook three dehydrated meals a day on a little stove," she said as she devoured a melon at the dock in Georgetown. "At night I would update my Facebook and e-mails. There is not much else to do on a row boat."


Cops tow funeral van with corpse inside

A terrified funeral director battled to get his body back after NYPD towed his funeral van with a corpse inside.

Instead of a road to eternal peace, a body left inside a funeral home minivan wound up in the city tow pound.

The unscheduled stop came after a police tow truck hooked the illegally parked vehicle outside Redden’s Funeral Home on W. 14th St.

The dearly departed was soon heading for a lot off the West Side Highway, with the truck driver handling the last rights – and a few lefts – on the ride through Chelsea.

Funeral director Paul DeNigris said he nearly died after walking outside the business Monday afternoon to find his client no longer resting in peace.

DeNigris had parked his silver 2002 Dodge in a “No Parking Anytime” zone outside the funeral home. The body, in a white cardboard box, was headed for Newark Airport and a flight to Miami for cremation.

The funeral director said he stepped inside to pick up some paperwork, took a phone call, and returned to find … nothing.

More here.

Daylight savings time at Stonehenge...

... in the fall they have to move it all back.

Donald Trump caused havoc on Morning Joe

A report at the link below details the havoc ‘the Donald’ brought with him recently to the MSNBC program Morning Joe.

Trump praised Rod Blagojevich and called for the retraction of Al Gore’s Nobel Peace Prize.

It was the best ten minutes in the show’s history since a drunken Terry McAuliffe took Bacardi shots on air to drown the pain of Hillary Clinton’s primary defeat in 2008.

The photo shows Donald Trump on a windy bad hair day.

Trump made a grand entrance giving Brzezinski an awkward, slightly-too-long hug and admitted that he only watches the show because of her beauty.

Then he launched into a passionate defense of his comrade-in-hair, former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich. “He’s got a lot of courage, when you think of it,” he said.

“When people get indicted, they crawl into a corner. They put their thumb in their mouth, they say ‘Mommy, take me home’ but this guy is on every show.”

And of Gore: “Take away his Nobel Prize.”

More here.