May 8, 2010

Getting help with the count

Mammal keeper Lucy Smith conducting a coatis count at London Zoo.

Gaither Gospel Homecoming presents “Oldest living quartet”

The quartet left to right: 93-year-old Robert S. Arnold, Jake Hess, Ben Speer, Rex Nelon.

Beautiful reflections in midst of disaster

Photo taken at Morgan Park Place in Germantown, Nashville, Tennessee.

May 7, 2010

Why Wall Street irresponsibility must stop

Broader rate unemployment goes over 17%

The U.S. jobless rate was rose to 9.9% in April, the first increase in three months, but the government’s broader measure of unemployment ticked up for the third month in a row, rising 0.2 percentage point to 17.1%.

The comprehensive gauge of labor underutilization, known as the “U-6″ for its data classification by the Labor Department, accounts for people who have stopped looking for work or who can’t find full-time jobs.

The media has generally been ignoring the broader, more realistic rate of 17.1% in favor of the 9.9% rate which is only part of the story but puts the Obama administration in a more favorable light.


Coke break monkey business in Bangkok

A monkey has a soft drink from a can at an ancient temple in Lopburi province, some 90 miles north of Bangkok.

Media: Times Square bomber false alarm

Pink bunnies headed for Weiberfastnacht

Travelers are shown walking along a street to the train station ahead of the opening of the traditional street carnival last February in Cologne.

The traditional woman's carnival "Weiberfastnacht" marks the beginning of the crazy days in Germany, that reach the highpoint with mass processions of millions on Rose Monday.

Another Democrat congressman bites the dust

Wisconsin Democrat congressman David Obey (pictured) has decided not to run for re-election.

Obey's departure is the latest example of veteran Democrats deciding to withdraw rather than face tough reelections -- a troubling sign for House speaker Nancy Pelosi for whom retention of the House grows more difficult with each retirement.

"There is a time to stay and a time to go. And this is my time to go," Obey told reporters on Capitol Hill today.

Ken Spain, a spokesman for the Republican campaign committee, said “the architect of Obama's failed stimulus plan has decided to call it quits.”

“It is ironic that a congressman who became infamously known for his short temper and angry tirades on the House floor, is going out with such a whimper.”


Bill Moyers Journal - finally off the air

Many people have been drawn in by the folksy charm of former Lyndon Johnson White House press secretary Bill Moyers (pictured).

His far-left liberal political ideas were shrouded in a pleasing southern homey style.

However, many saw him as a ‘leftist wingnut’ who invited guests to the PBS program Bill Moyers Journal who shared his leftist views. Guests with opposing views almost never appeared on his program.

He held conservative political show hosts in disdain calling one FOX News program “political pornography.”

Now that he has retired, liberals will likely trot out Moyers as some sort of revered source of truth much as they did Jimmy Carter (that is until Carter shamed himself with his anti-Semitism and a semi-plagiarized book) giving Moyers an even greater platform to offer his self-righteous pronouncements.

May 6, 2010

Trader error triggered 1,000 point DOW plunge

From a report at the link below:

In one of the most dizzying half-hours in stock market history, the Dow plunged nearly 1,000 points before paring those losses—all apparently due to a trader error.

According to multiple sources, a trader entered a "b" for billion instead of an "m" for million in a trade possibly involving Procter & Gamble a component in the Dow.

CNBC's Jim Cramer noted suspicious price movement in P&G stock on air during the height of the market selloff.

Sources tell CNBC the erroneous trade may have been made at Citigroup.


Putting the oil spill in perspective

Oprah who? Judge Judy tops Oprah Winfrey Show

Judge Judy tops the Oprah Winfrey Show.

Top 25 Syndicated Shows for the week ending April 25, 2010 by number of viewers

1 WHEEL OF FORTUNE - 9,807,000
2 JEOPARDY - 8,108,000
3 Two and a Half Men - 6,897,000
4 JUDGE JUDY - 6,085,000
5 Entertainment Tonight - 5,714,000
6 Oprah Winfrey Show - 5,681,000

Judge Judy was fourth, and trumped Oprah for daytime supremacy for the sixth consecutive week in the week ending April 25.


Human ‘pinball machine’ trashes mobile home park

Police in Lafayette, Colorado said 30-year-old Adrian Joseph Shaffer trashed part of a mobile home park.

The called him the human ‘pinball machine’ after he used his van to ram a chain-link fence, a concrete culvert and a parked pickup truck, before crashing into three mobile homes.

“He appeared to be doing it deliberately, not accidentally,” Lafayette police Cmdr. Mark Battersby said.


Red Bull flying objects contest

Her pistol stolen from public restroom

From a report in the Juneau Empire newspaper:

A 24-year-old Juneau woman went into a public restroom packing heat and left burned.

The Juneau, Alaska Police Department said Veronica Balle-Arnes was carrying a Ruger .380 - a small pocket pistol - worth about $400.

She took the gun out of her waistband and set it on top of a toilet paper dispenser in the women's room at the Fisherman's Wharf, a building on Juneau's downtown waterfront with a bar, eateries and shops.

She told police she forgot to pick it back up. When she realized it was missing a few moments later, she returned to the restroom but the gun was gone.

Don’t ya hate it when that happens!


Security failed - revisited

This is another look at the critical reports about the security slip that let the bomb suspect on the plane, near takeoff.

Link here and here.

It’s almost as if the following is the check-off list Homeland Security has given TSA for use at airports.

Pays cash for a last minute one-way ticket - Check

Wears a cheap tee shirt smelling of bomb making material - Check

Bomb making wires sticking out of back pocket - Check

Looks like Mohammad Atta's twin brother - Check

Can’t speak English - needs a Pakistani interpreter - Check

Let him on the plane - he’s fine.

May 5, 2010

Report: The flood everyone forgot

Boudleaux Bryant and his wife Felice wrote the song Rocky Top in just a few minutes almost as a lark while taking a break from a more serious song writing project in 1967.

If the celebrated song-writing duo (pictured) were alive today they may well re-write the song with a new title, Soggy Top to reflect the forgotten flood in Tennessee.

From the report at the link below:

There's been a controversial immigration law passed, sometimes violent protests in its wake.

There's an oil slick the size of a Northeastern state making its way into the marshlands and beaches of the Gulf Coast, potentially ruining miles of coastline and thousands of livelihoods for a long time to come.

There was an unsuccessful bombing attempt in Times Square perpetrated by a man who may have trained at a bomb-making terrorist camp in Pakistan.

Oh, by the way, there is also a disastrous flood in Middle Tennessee that has parts of the state under 10 feet of water.

Nero fiddled while Rome burned. This man is pickin’ while Nashville floats away.

The Opry Mills shopping center under water.

Water half way up on the Grand Ole Opry stage door.

A total of 29 people have been killed so far - 19 of them in Tennessee.

It's just that nobody has noticed. Our national news bandwidth is somewhat occupied at the moment.

Besides, Tennessee is a conservative state so why would the feds want to bother?

The forgotten flood story is here.

A 3-minute video showing a house floating down the interstate before imploding is here.

Ironic tee-shirts To Get Arrested In

Ironic tee-shirt To Get Arrested In

TV subtitles: poor substitute for reading

Report: avoid joining the e-mail chain of fools

From a report at the first link below:
Never in human history has so much knowledge been right at the fingertips of so many people, thanks to the internet. And yet some still choose to ignore that information and spread hoaxes with the click of the 'send' button.

We have all received e-mails with stories of anything from warning people that if they receive a link to a picture of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown smiling it will infect their computers with a virus to bogus alerts about flesh-eating spiders.

Do you forward all the e-mails you receive without checking out the stories or wild claims? If we don’t have time to research these forwarded e-mails, they end up in the recycle bin. At least 85% of them end up there anyway even if we do check them out.

John Ratliff, founder of, says people who forward e-mails usually “don't know when that e-mail was written. They don't know what's happened since the e-mail was written - they don't have the whole story.” More importantly, they don’t know if the e-mail was a hoax to begin with.

Two often forwarded e-mails involve former President George W. Bush.

In the first instance, Bush is supposedly reading to schoolchildren from a book he is holding upside down. It is a hoax. The photo (shown above) has been doctored.

The second is the photo of a billboard (shown below) showing a smiling George W. Bush with the message “Miss me yet?” This e-mail was not a hoax.

The billboard on Interstate 35 near Wyoming, Minnesota is real - see third link below.

Link here here and here.

Security slip allowed bomb suspect on plane

Janet Napolitano’s Department of Homeland Security dropped the ball again.

The no-fly list failed to keep the Times Square suspect off the plane. This time Napolitano (pictured) didn’t say “the system worked” as she did the time the airliner flying over Minnesota could have been blown out of the sky.

Faisal Shahzad had boarded a jetliner bound for the United Arab Emirates Monday night before federal authorities pulled him back.

The night's events, gradually coming to light, underscored the flaws in the nation's aviation security system, which despite its technologies, lists and information sharing, often comes down to someone making a right call.


May 4, 2010

Lincoln Navigator as rickshaw in China?

This is a highly Photoshopped picture that appears to be a rickshaw made from a Lincoln Navigator.

Gulf oil spill will be Obama’s Katrina

Gleaned from reports at the links below:

If U.S. officials had followed up on a 1994 response plan for a major Gulf oil spill, it is possible that the spill could have been kept under control and far from land.

The photo above shows an oil burn being conducted in a Hydro-Fire Boom system. The inflatable, fire-resistant, water-cooled boom was developed to contain surface oil and burn it offshore, helping prevent destruction of critical environmentally sensitive shoreline habitats.

Problem is, there was not a single fire boon in the gulf!

An Associated Press report at the second link below says:

To hear Obama administration officials tell it, they've been fully engaged on the Gulf Coast oil spill since Day One, bringing every resource to bear and able to ensure without question that taxpayers will be protected.

Not quite.

Take President Barack Obama's repeated claims that BP will be responsible for all the costs associated with the devastating spill that began after an oil rig operated by the company exploded April 20, killing 11 workers and later sinking.

In reality, the federal Oil Pollution Act, enacted in 1990 at the time of the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, sets BP’s total liability at $75 million, a pittance compared to potential losses.

The administration's evolving rhetoric reflects not only the increasing seriousness of the spill itself, but its determination to be seen as responsive from the get-go and to squelch comparisons to the Bush administration's slow-footed response to Hurricane Katrina.

And maybe, with the help of a fawning media, Obama can somehow avoid the comparison to Katrina in the eyes of many Americans.

It will be a monumental task, however, for the media to avoid a Katrina comparison especially after claims by the administration that they “responded at 100 percent starting Day One to an incident whose magnitude was not yet apparent, or when black-and-white assertions about taxpayer protections turn out to be tinged with gray.”

Link here and here.

Media trying to clean gulf oil from Obama

Yike’s! It’s the foldable electric YikeBike

The Hulk enters Madame Tussaud’s wax museum

A sculptor finishes the clay head of the Hulk at Madame Tussaud’s wax museum in London. The legendary Marvel comic book super hero will be the largest figure ever created by the wax museum.

FOX News Channel has been #1 for 100 consecutive months

More proof that far-left liberalism doesn’t sell very well in middle America.

The gang at FNC has to be pleased.

The network rolls in at #1 for 100 consecutive months in total viewership, according to Nielsen Media Research. This includes Primetime and Total Day news programming.

FNC also secured nine out of the top 10 programs in cable news for April in total viewers. Here's the pecking order of the top five:

1. Bill O'Reilly (pictured)
2. Glenn Beck
3. Sean Hannity
4. Bret Baier
5. Greta Van Susteren


May 3, 2010

Creepy TV ad to scare PA residents into paying back taxes

Rock star Ted Nugent on Sarah Palin and immigration

Rock legend Ted Nugent is not swayed by the dislike and even hatred of Sarah Palin (pictured) shared by most liberals.

From his report at the link below:

The independent patriotic spirit, attitude and soul of our forefathers are alive and well in Sarah.

In the way she lives, what she says and how she dedicates herself to make America better in these interesting times, she represents the good, while exposing the bad and ugly.

Link here for the Time Magazine Sarah Palin report by Nugent.

Link here for a Ted Nugent report on immigration printed in the Washington Times today.

Below is a very interesting Ted Nugent interview about immigration from 2007.

Come on out - Mondays aren’t so bad

Queen Elizabeth II in shocking pink

Queen Elizabeth II is shown touring an arena in Llandudno, Wales.

Those GM repayment TV ads are false and misleading

General Motors has been running ads on all the major networks claiming the company repaid its $6.7 billion U.S. government loan "with interest five years ahead of the original schedule."

General Motors Company CEO Ed Whitacre (pictured) can be seen in the ads walking through an auto plant as he touts the company's progress.

The problem is - the ad is false at worst and misleading at best.

GM says it repaid the remaining $5.8 billion owed to the U.S. Treasury and Export Development Canada despite announcing a $4.3-billion loss for the six-months following its emergence from bankruptcy as a U.S. government controlled company.

The repayment dollars haven't come from GM selling cars but, instead, from a TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) escrow account at the Treasury Department so it was really just an elaborate TARP money shuffle.

It’s no different than the proverbial “borrowing from Peter to pay Paul” which means taxpayers are still on the hook for what is still a GM bailout (using taxpayer funds) and the GM stockholders are still on the hook for a failing investment.

Link here and here.

Boehner: ObamaCare will be repealed after November elections

From an NPR report:

House Republican Leader John Boehner (pictured) has said that his party will repeal the new health care law if the GOP gains a congressional majority in November.

Boehner said, "I think that we need to repeal the health care law and replace it with common-sense steps that will lower the cost of health insurance in America."

Boehner and the Republicans are hoping for a repeat of 1994, when the GOP swept the midterm elections. He says the party is engaging with the public to develop the agenda it will enact if it secures a majority in November.

The party that controls the White House typically loses House seats during midterm elections, and Democrats are bracing for losses: 37 governorships, 36 Senate seats and the entire 435-member House are at stake.


May 2, 2010

Kennedy does Vodka shots after speaking on substance abuse

Congressman Patrick Kennedy, son of the late Ted Kennedy, spoke about his history of substance abuse at a charity event in Washington.

Just hours later Mr. Kennedy was spotted doing vodka shots at a Capitol Hill bar.

After slamming down the first round, another was ordered, then a third.

Kennedy drank three more before the bartender cut him off.

One commenter said this proves once again that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Patrick Kennedy’s parents were both alcoholics.


Bizarre fashion in Mexico City

Models wear bizarre creations by Mexican designer Gianfranco Reni at a fashion show in Mexico City.

Is Britain being overrun by Muslims?

Times Square on lock down - bomb found in van

Times Square in New York City was evacuated when an apparent car bomb was found in a parked sport utility vehicle Saturday night.

Times Square buildings were evacuated and streets were cleared of thousands of tourists.

A mounted police officer noticed smoke coming from the SUV at 6:30 p.m., police said. Bomb investigators found propane tanks, powder and an apparent timing device inside, according to a law enforcement official who wasn't authorized to release the information and spoke on condition of anonymity.

More here.

596 immigrant criminals arrested in the Southeast

Federal agents have arrested 596 immigrants with criminal records during a three-day immigration enforcement sweep across the Southeast.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said Friday that the operation, dubbed Operation Cross Check, was the largest ever conducted by the agency targeting foreign nationals convicted of crimes.

Atlanta ICE Field Director Felicia Skinner says that "communities around the Southeast are safer than they were before" as a result. She said three of the people arrested this week had been convicted of murder and 144 were convicted on assault charges.