Jun 19, 2010

Penguin practicing for the World Cup

An African penguin prepares to kick a miniature soccer ball into the goal at the Hakkejima Sea Paradise aquarium in Yokohama, Japan

Nice kitty … roar … woof

A Golden Retriever, dyed to look like a tiger, plays at the Dahe Pet Civilization Park in Zhengzhou, China.

Photo from Time Magazine

Gaither Homecoming group sing “I Just Can’t Make it by Myself”

Jun 18, 2010

Do we really count?

(click on cartoon to enlarge)

What took so long?

Campbell Soup Recalls SpaghettiOs

Spaghetti no-nos!

Varieties of SpaghettiOs with meatballs may contain undercooked meat.

The recall includes SpaghettiOs with Meatballs, SpaghettiOs A to Z with Meatballs, and SpaghettiOs Fun Shapes with Meatballs (Cars).

Campbell Soup Co. is recalling 15 million pounds of SpaghettiOs with meatballs after a cooker malfunctioned at one of the company's plants in Texas and left the meat undercooked.

More here.

Oil-sucking barges stopped by Coast Guard

Who is in charge in the Gulf? Didn’t the White House say Mr. Obama was in charge?

Why did the Coast Guard order the oil-sucking barges stopped?

Were the oil-sucking barges stopped to make BP look even worse so Americans will cheer the White House shakedown of British Petroleum?

Link here and here.

This guy wants to be first in line for the iPhone 4

Apparently someone is eager to be first in line for the iPhone 4. Eager enough to pitch a tent one week early!

Endgadget reports:

Let's hope he got his preorder in, and that he's not waiting for the white one. Otherwise, he's going to be one unhappy camper.


Strange White House photos from the past

These photos were plucked from a Washington Post “Picture This” gallery.

President Richard Nixon meets with Elvis Presley in this 1970 photo. Elvis, said to be a hard drug user in the 1960’s and an abuser of prescription drugs in the 1970’s, wanted to be designated a federal agent at large for the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs - oops.

This photo taken in May 1978 was signed: "To John Gacy. Best Wishes. Rosalynn Carter." It was found at Gacy's house in suburban Chicago -- along with 33 bodies of dead boys -- later that year - oops.

Senator Chris Dodd’s ‘parting shot’

With the help of Democrat Senator Chris Dodd (pictured), the federal government has awarded $54 million to Connecticut’s politically well-connected Mohegan Indian tribe, which operates one of the highest grossing casinos in the U.S.

The casino earns $1 billion-plus per year and now is $54 million richer thanks to Chris Dodd’s generosity with taxpayer money.

Chris Dodd was pressured into not running for re-election enhancing the chance for a Democrat to win the seat held by Dodd for nearly 30 years.

Is the gift to the Indian Casino Dodd’s ‘parting shot’ for being forced out of the Senate by the Obama administration?


Jun 17, 2010

American Airlines to charge for early boarding

Just when we thought airlines had run out of new ways to charge passenger, American Airlines discovered another.

The new assault on travelers wallets is a service American Airlines calls a “Boarding and Flexibility Package” that charges $9 and up each way for earlier boarding, the right to stand by for an earlier flight and a discount on change fees.

More here.

The Apple that fell far from the tree

The often used idiom, “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree,” does not apply to Apple Computer co-founder Ronald Wayne.

Ronald Wayne (pictured), one of the three co-founders of Apple Computer, sold out early for hundreds rather than millions yet refuses to submit to regrets.

The 76-year-old Wayne is two decades older than Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.

Photo above shows Ron Wayne walking near his Nevada home.

Mr. Wayne lives in remote Pahrump, Nevada. It is a place so near the middle of nowhere that it didn’t get telephones until the 1960s.

He was 42 and chief draftsman at Atari when he first encountered 21-year-old Steve Jobs. It was Wayne who designed the original Apple logo and wrote the original manual.

More here.

Charles winces as Camilla ogles his knees

Penguins in the Gulf?

A 14-year-old goes on joy ride in stolen bus

From a report at the link below:

A 14-year-old boy who was suspended from school decided to steal a bus and take it for a joy ride.

The Milwaukee teen went for a walk and saw a school bus parked with its engine running near 90th Street and Capitol Drive. The driver had gotten out of the vehicle to help a special-needs student to his front door.

Wrestling with his conscience, the boy walked past the bus numerous times and debated whether to get inside. The falling rain helped him make up his mind, however, and he jumped into the driver's seat and drove away.

The first stop was his grandmother's house near 45th Street and Concordia Avenue, where he parked the vehicle for a few hours. Then he took the bus to Mayfair Mall, where he was seen driving recklessly and not obeying stop signs.

The boy told police he "had no intention of shopping, but wanted to be seen by others driving the bus through the lot."


Al Gore says stop censoring Gulf news

The Al Gore ‘real’ inconvenient truth.

Mr. Gore made a posting on his personal web site titled “stop censoring news from the Gulf.”

It’s akin to the pot calling the kettle sooty.

Al Gore’s accusation here.

Al Gore banning the media from his speech in 2009 here.

Al Gore banning the media from his speech in 2008 here.

Al Gore banning the media from his speech in 2007 here.

Police in Russia seize 100,000 anti-Vladimir Putin books

The old photo below shows a Nazi book burning in 1930’s Germany.

Will there be a similar book burning in Russia?

If not, they will be missing a good chance.

Russian police seized 100,000 copies of a book critical of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin (pictured) that activists planned to hand out at the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum.

Copies of 'Putin. The Results. 10 Years on', written by opposition politicians Boris Nemtsov and Vladimir Milov were "intended for participants of the forum", starting Thursday, according to Olga Kurnosova, head of the city's branch of the opposition United Civic Front, said.


Jun 16, 2010

Dirty money

A St. Louis worker found $58 - packed in dog poop. Steve Wilson works for DoodyCalls Pet Waste Removal. On a recent call, he noticed money sticking out from doggie doo. Wilson wasn't sure what to do, but eventually pulled out the bills, sanitized them, placed them in a plastic zip-locked bag and returned them to the customer. It turned out to be $58.

The company said the money was torn, but the serial numbers were identifiable, which means the bills could be returned to a bank and replaced with new money.

The Association of Professional Animal Waste Specialists says Wilson is the first person in his profession to find and report money in dog poop.


Did anyone in the media like the spill speech?

Examples of media reaction to the Obama spill speech:

Obama left blanks in spill speech that did not stand up to fact checking. Link

Obama's Curiously Flat Gulf Speech. Link

Obama's Speech: Calling for Courage, but Showing Little. Link

The thorough trashing of spill speech by MSNBC. Link

Obama's address: grand setting, weak policies. Link

That Stench of Rotting Bull is Just Obama’s Oval Office Speech. Link

Obama fried in oil. Link

Where Does He Get the Authority to ‘Inform’ a Private CompanyThat It Must Surrender Its Money? Link

Obama's speech: There's a pipe spewinga gazillion gobs of oil into the gulf, so let's build more windmills. Link

Obama’s first Oval Office speech a flop. Link

Obamas' Long Nose. Link

Thwack! Take that you pesky fruit fly!

Poll: Presidential Approval hits new low


Airliner silhouetted against a full moon

Time Magazine criticizes Obama’s spill speech

Time Magazine has been an avid supporter of Barack Obama. A reliable cheerleader for the president no matter how much he stumbled -- until now.

From a Time report titled, “Obama's Spill Speech: Calling for Courage, but Showing Little.”

As a candidate, Obama repeatedly promised to tell Americans what they need to hear, not what they want to hear. That was among his most invigorating promises: a pledge to lead, to cast aside the poll-driven positioning that prevented America from solving its most persistent problems.

In the first Oval Office address of his presidency, Obama didn't do that, and he must know it. Which must be the most frustrating thing of all.


Rickshaw barrel hauler

A rickshaw driver hauls empty drums in New Delhi, India.

Americans heightened anger with the media

Americans have spoken and they are livid with the media.

A new Rasmussen poll found an astonishing two thirds of American voters are at least somewhat angry at the media, including an entire one third who said they are ‘very angry.’

That’s disturbing but unfortunately, not surprising.

The liberal media lost touch with the public and fair reporting long ago, and Americans are sick of their lavish praise for a President that is leading our country and economy into a disastrous state.

The American people are abandoning the old media by the millions because they are simply fed up.

Now is the time for the national, so-called "news" media to Tell The Truth! and report the facts. The American people are furious and are demanding answers.

Most in the media report what liberal politicians say without fact checking.

One example was when Obama said he was on the oil spill from day one. The liberal media quickly reported it as fact.


Watch MSNBC’s hard core leftists trash Obama’s speech

There is a video at the link below showing MSNBC’s hard-core leftists saying what they thought of Barack Obama’s speech. They had nothing but criticism and sarcasm as they thoroughly trashed the speech.

Below are a few of the highlights listed at the link below:

Keith Olbermann: "It was a great speech if you were on another planet for the last 57 days."

Chris Matthews compared Obama to Carter.

Keith Olbermann: "Nothing specific at all was said."

Chris Matthews: "No direction."

Howard Fineman: "He wasn't specific enough."

Keith Olbermann: "I don't think he aimed low, I don't think he aimed at all. It's startling."

Howard Fineman: Obama should be acting like a "commander-in-chief."

Chris Matthews: Ludicrous that he keeps saying [Secretary of Energy] Chu has a Nobel prize. "I'll barf if he does it one more time."

Chris Matthews: "A lot of meritocracy, a lot of blue ribbon talk."

Chris Matthews: "I don't sense executive command."

All three have been staunch Obama loyalists -- until now.

They have all been quick with alibis and excuses for Obama’s shortcomings whether perceived or real -- until now.

Look for more liberals to criticize Obama’s indecisiveness.


Jun 15, 2010

Defining the oil slick

Xbox to release new controller-free game device

Move over Wii - make way for the new Xbox motion-sensing, controller-free game system to be released by Microsoft in December.

During development it was called Project Natal. Now it is simply called “Kinect.”

The games will rely on a device the size of a stapler that perches on top of a living room TV to recognize faces, obey voice commands and track body movements.

No more pushing 14 different buttons in endless sequences. In fact, there are no buttons at all as the video below shows.


Taylor Ware at age 12 yodeling on America’s Got Talent

Taylor Ware was 12-years-old when this America’s Got Talent video was made. She also plays the violin.

She was born in 1994 and lives in Franklin, Tennessee.

Pelosi pays $18K a month for office in SF

From a report in Roll Call:

Last fall, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (pictured) moved her district office into the new federal building in San Francisco. The move quadrupled the rent she pays, and her new $18,736 monthly bill is almost double the next-highest rental paid by a Member of the House.

Members from large urban districts with the highest property values are paying the most for district office rental, particularly New York–area Members.

But even in these high-rent districts, Pelosi’s new digs blow away the competition.


Concern growing on Capitol Hill about Obama’s war

A Washington Post report (see link below) is under the heading “Obama's War” and titled, “Concern on Capitol Hill about Afghanistan war grows.”

A series of political and military setbacks in Afghanistan has fed anxiety over the war effort in the past few weeks, shaking supporters of President Obama's counterinsurgency strategy and confirming the pessimism of those who had doubts about it from the start.

More here.

Photo from scenic remote NW Colorado

Northwest corner of Colorado and the picturesque Yampa and Green River canyons in Dinosaur National Monument. Breathtaking

Prince Charles bores Oxford students

Prince Charles urged environmentalists to follow the Islamic way to save the world.

The outspoken Prince Charles, not known for his intellect, spoke to Islamic studies scholars at Oxford. He told them man's destruction of the world was particularly contrary to Islam.

However, as the photo shows, not everyone in the audience was as interested in the subject as Prince Charles.


Obama says seafood from Gulf safe to eat despite fishing ban

Barack Obama announced that seafood from the gulf was safe.

“I had some of that seafood for lunch, and it was delicious,” Obama said, “We want to make sure that the food industry down here, as much as possible, is getting the protection and certification that they need to continue their businesses.”

Two weeks ago the gulf fishing ban was extended as reported in the second link below.

US officials Monday expanded a fishing ban in the Gulf of Mexico by more than 1,000 square miles (2,600 square kilometers) amid a spreading oil slick.

The extended fishing ban was reported two weeks ago. Since then oil contamination in the gulf has increased.

The photo below shows gulf fishing boats idled by the fishing ban.

Link here and here.

Jun 14, 2010

Whaling activist facing jail time in Japan

Peter Bethune (pictured) is facing time in a Japanese jail for assault

Japanese prosecutors have demanded a two-year prison sentence for Sea Shepherd activist Peter Bethune over an assault charge stemming from his boarding of a Japanese whaling ship in the Southern Ocean.

The Sea Shepherd flagship Steve Irwin is shown below.

New Zealander Peter Bethune has been detained since his arrest over the boarding in February, during which Japanese prosecutors allege he injured a crewman on board the Shonan Maru 2 by throwing a bottle of rancid butter at him.

Prosecutors told Tokyo District Court that chemical burns to the face of a 24-year-old whaler were "clearly caused by rancid butter fired by the defendant".

The 45-year-old Bethune may have two years in a Japanese jail to ponder the difference between protest and assault.

Will he get the usual fish heads and rice or will they give him his preferred vegan diet?


Flag Day began on May 14, 1777

The Second Continental Congress adopted the flag of the United States on this day in 1777.

Brochure advertises black sand beaches

Sound of the World Cup

Do you find yourself turning the sound off while watching the World Cup games? If so, you’re not alone.

The sound of World Cup soccer this year is difficult to bear. Many watching the games in South Africa are worried about permanent damage to their hearing as reported in an article at the link below.

The din emitting from the tuneless plastic horns is louder than that from a drum or a chainsaw, according to the survey by hearing aid manufacturer Phonak.

It said tests had shown the sound emitted by a vuvuzela was the equivalent to 127 decibels. The sound from a drum was put at 122 decibels while the sound from a referee's whistle registered 121.8 decibels.

How distracting is it for the players on the field? Will the noise from thousands of tuneless plastic vuvuzela horns change the outcome of some of the matches?

The humble vuvuzela has become very controversial, with many fans and players wanting it banned. But many more say that this plastic stadium horn, or blowing horn, has come to symbolize football (soccer) in South Africa.

Fans in South Africa cannot imagine the game without the sound of the vuvuzelas and argue that the instrument adds to a unique African atmosphere. The vuvuzela is described as “the noise-making trumpet of South Africa football (soccer) fans.”

Spectators use it to encourage their teams, express their joy (or disappointment) or just to show their excitement.


Cameras trip up Joran van der Sloot story

Mug shot below taken by Peruvian police shows van der Sloot is about 6’ 6” tall.

Governor Schwarzenegger’s voting mishap

In the photo above Arnold Schwarzenegger receives instruction from a voting precinct inspector as he casts his vote in the California Primary Elections last week.

Schwarzenegger voted wrong anyway and had to recast his ballot because he selected two candidates instead of one.

A scanning machine rejected Schwarzenegger's first ballot last Tuesday because he selected two Senate candidates, instead of one.

Schwarzenegger was given the choice of filling out a new ballot or not having his Senate choice count.

He cast a fresh ballot.


The 65th Anniversary of VE Day in London

The photos below were taken last week during the 65th Anniversary of VE Day in London.

Prince Charles wife Camilla laughs while hiding under her umbrella as politician Bob Ainsworth struggles with his umbrella. Somehow the scene fits since current politics in the UK is about as ǝpısdn uʍop as Ainsworth’s umbrella.

Acting as if they can’t stand each other -- British Prime Minister David Cameron in the center is flanked by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg on the left and former Prime Minister Gordon Brown on the right as they celebrate the 65th Anniversary of VE Day.

You just can’t make this stuff up!

Jun 13, 2010

Tiger at US Open: a decade of difference

A report at the link below is titled, “Expectations have fallen as Woods flounders.”

As Tiger Woods returns to the United States Open this week at Pebble Beach, the site of his still-stunning victory in 2000, he is facing some uncomfortable truths and difficult barriers. Four days before the tournament begins, Woods is trying to find a game that will hold up under major championship pressure.

In fact, with significant gaps in his game apparent in the four tournaments he has played in the run-up to the Open, Woods, 34, barely resembles the carefree, unfettered young man who won here by record 15 strokes a decade ago.

Since returning to the pro tour for the Masters last April, Woods has not come close to a win. The report says his average score in 13 rounds is 71.07, which would rank him 83rd on the PGA Tour.

The old confidence and swagger is gone. Can he bring it back?


Report: Environmentalists give Obama a pass on oil spill

As the public grows frustrated with Obama's oil spill response, environmental groups have remained quiet.

As the greatest environmental catastrophe in U.S. history has played out on Obama’s watch, the environmental movement has essentially given him a pass — all but refusing to unleash any vocal criticism against the president even as the public has grown more frustrated by Obama’s performance.

Instead of faulting Obama for his non-response to the disaster in the gulf, environmentalists are praising him!

About a dozen environmental groups took out a full page ad in the Washington Post Tuesday — not to fault Obama over the ecological catastrophe but to thank him for putting on hold an Alaska drilling project. “We deeply appreciate your decision. ...” the ad says to Obama.

The report goes on to say what would have happened if the oil spill would have been while George W. Bush was in the White House:

There’s little doubt that if a spill like the one in the Gulf took place on former President George W. Bush’s watch, environmental groups would have unleashed an unsparing fury on the Republican in the White House. For their liberal ally, Obama, they seem willing to hold their tongues.


Unicab: the New York City concept cab?

For the past two years the New York Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) has been hunting for the so-called “taxi of tomorrow” -- a cab that integrates safety, comfort, energy efficiency, and superior design.

Will the TLC choose an EV (electric vehicle) such as the Unicab shown here?

It looks like a cross between an artist’s conception of a UFO and a lunar rover. At first glance, it’s hard to tell if the vehicle is coming or going.