Thursday, February 24, 2011

The American dictatorship

An amazing thing has happened. I'm not certain when this took place, and it remains to be seen if it will be challenged, but it appears we have completely ceased to be a Republic or even a functional Democracy. We are now a full-fledged dictatorship. Don't believe me? Check out this Department of Justice memo. Pay careful attention to the fourth paragraph, in which the Attorney General states:
The President has ... concluded that Section 3 of DOMA, as applied to legally married same-sex couples, fails to meet that standard and is therefore unconstitutional. Given that conclusion, the President has instructed the Department not to defend the statute in such cases. I fully concur with the President’s determination.
What's wrong with this? Anyone? Oh, that's right... they haven't taught civics in school for decades, so if you mention "separation of powers" to anyone under the age of 40, you're more likely than not to get a funny look and asked, "You mean separation of church and state?"

Ripe for the moon god's harvest

I read a comment today that went like this:
I am sooo having this issue with some who complain that jihadists want American Christians all dead, ... their solution? KILL them all.. Hello?? I think I thought up a new term 'Christian jihadists'
Well, darling, this begs the question: given the premise that jihadists want to kill us, what is the solution, if not killing them first? As far as I am concerned, there is only one viable solution, if they continue to pursue worldwide dominion, and that is to fight back. Killing your enemy is actually sometimes necessary. The only other option is to be slaughtered, or in the case of Muslim rule, become ahl al-dhimmah. Death before dhimmitude, I say. If you disagree, let me quote that great patriot, Samuel Adams:
If you love wealth more than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, depart from us in peace. We ask not your counsel nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains rest lightly upon you and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen.

What would Sam Adams say to this dhimmi?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Well said

Gold Subject on reasons to buy gold. Gold is not an investment; it's inflation-proofing your savings. Sell your dollars while they're still worth something. Get something tangible, and gold should be at the top of that list of tangibles.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Concerned American: "The rule of law in this country is dead."

A somewhat depressing article by Concerned American that you need to read. It's his response to a Rolling Stone article entitled Why Isn't Wall Street in Jail? which is also worth reading, as long as you don't mind getting pissed off.

Arctic Patriot's initial reaction. Then he slept on it and wrote something a little more measured.

I'm not optimistic about this stuff at all. That's why we've been working so hard on getting out of debt (only a couple months left) and learning to live a simpler life for the past several years. I'd encourage you to do the same.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Silver breakout

Silver broke through resistance around $31 yesterday and kept right on going today, almost hitting $33 before pulling back to $32.42. This represents a 7.5% gain in one week. Silver miners are doing even better, particularly some of the junior stocks: Canadian Zinc is up 27.7% and U. S. Silver is up 22.1%.

Where it goes from here is anyone's guess, but now that it's broken through, it's going to have to find a new high. Some of the silver bulls are predicting $35, $45, $50, or even $75 silver by the end of the year. They've been wrong before. On the other hand, they've been right before. I fondly recall buying silver at around $4 just ten years ago with PFD money. In another decade, will we fondly reminisce about the "good old days" when we could buy it for a paltry $35?

Charts from

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Looks like a fair year for sci-fi

In addition to the pile of steaming poo superhero movies (Thor, Green Lantern, Captain America, Conan the Barbarian, Transformers, X-Men) coming out this year, it looks like we'll be treated to a sci-fi flick each month, March through July. Trailers after the break...

First off, on March 11, Sony is releasing Battle: Los Angeles, starring Michelle Rodriguez (Lost). This movie will be great, no matter what, for three reasons:
  1. Michelle Rodriguez
  2. Los Angeles gets blown up
  3. Michelle Rodriguez
As an aside: Michelle, you have to stop calling me; I'm married, and happily so. I know it's hard for you to let go, since I'm such a catch, but I'm afraid I'm taken. Now, please put down the gun.

Next, on April 22, Dimension is releasing Apollo 18, about which there is very little information, but it supposedly has aliens and 1960s astronauts. We'll see...

Then, on May 13, Sony is releasing Priest, "a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller, is set in an alternate world -- one ravaged by centuries of war between man and vampires." So, we get post-apocalyptic sci-fi vampires; how cool is that? The problem is, the trailer makes it obvious that this is (yet another) slam against the Roman Catholic Church, and, by proxy, all of Christendom. Then again, what do you expect from Hollywood?

Come June 10, Paramount releases J. J. Abrams' (Alias, Lost, and the most recent iteration of Star Trek) Super 8. It stars Kyle Chandler (The Day the Earth Stood Still, Friday Night Lights) and... a bunch of kids. So, despite the spooky trailer, this may turn out to be another E. T.

Finally, on July 29, Dreamworks releases Cowboys and Aliens. Seriously, the only way that combo could be any cooler is if it was entitled Cowboys and Aliens and Ninjas and Vampires. Anyway, to make Teh Awesome even more complete, it stars Han Solo Indiana Jones Jack Ryan Rick Deckard Harrison Ford. And also Daniel Craig, who is one of the few James Bond impersonators that somewhat measures up to Sean Connery.

Speaking of cowboys and ninjas, The Warrior's Way came out a month or so ago.

Now, for the trailers:

Friday, February 11, 2011

On Bloody Ground

Abraham Covalt is my ancestor of the 9th generation, through my mother's father. I found this story of the settlement of the Terrace Park, Ohio area (close to Cincinatti) that references him and several of my other family members.

Pioneer settlers and Shawnee Indians fought and died for possession of what is now Terrace Park. The Indians almost won.

Five settlers were killed in little more than a year after Abraham Covalt, a Revolutionary War captain, established fortified Covalt Station here in January, 1789. The Indians lost only one. Two military expeditions suffered dismal defeat, and Covalt Station had to be abandoned over the winter of 1791-92. Of the Covalt Station men who joined the second military expedition, only [my great-uncle] Chenaniah Covalt returned.

The menace continued throughout the Miami area until an army under General "Mad Anthony" Wayne won a victory and then a peace treaty in 1795. But in the years between, four other men had been killed here. Four more were carried off as prisoners, and only one was ever heard of again. The usual lot of Indian prisoners was to be burned at the stake.

For a time, indeed, the land between the two Miamis was called "the Miami slaughterhouse." So harassing were the Indian raids that a committee of citizens of Columbia and newly-founded Cincinnati once offered rewards for Indian scalps "with the right ear attached."

For the record...

There was a post on FriendFace ButtFace FaceBook some time ago that contained a bunch of misinformation half-truths lies. To set the record straight:
  1. The integrated circuit was conceived in Britain by Geoffrey W.A. Dummer. The Intel 4004 was developed by Federico Faggin and Ted Hoff of Intel, and Masatoshi Shima of Busicom. It was released November 15, 1971.
  2. Windows NT was developed between 1989 and 1993 by Dave Cutler et al of DEC.
  3. The first paper on firewall technology was published by DEC in 1988. Packet filtering was developed by Bill Cheswick and Steve Bellovin of Bell Labs. Third-generation firewalls were developed in 1989-1990 at Bell Labs by Dave Presetto, Janardan Sharma, Kshitij Nigam.
  4. Cellular technology was invented by Bell Labs. Sweden had the first small cellular network in 1956. The USSR had one in 1958. The first public cellular phone network was in Finland in 1971. The modern cell phone was invented by Motorola in 1973; Martin Cooper made the first call on April 3, 1973.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Quit complaining and enjoy the life God's given you

I can't remember where I got this, so I can't give credit where credit is due, but it's worth watching. One of my pet peeves is people bitching and moaning about how bad things are, how horrible the industrial revolution was, and how modern technology has actually made life worse. I've always called bullcrap on this notion, which is almost always voiced the loudest by hypocrites who fully enjoy all the benefits of living in modern society: medicine, computers, the internet, automobiles, and so on. Mr. Rosling backs me up:

In the same vein, but more entertaining:

Oh Idaho, how I love thee

Two district chairmen of the Idaho Republican Party have proposed a resolution that seeks to nullify the illegal Gun Control Act of 1986.
h/t David Codrea over at The War on Guns

The GCA 1986 established the FFL system we have in place now, making it illegal to sell mail-order guns. I've heard that back in the good old days, you could order a Tommy Gun from Sears.

Idaho is on my (very short) list of states I would be willing to move to if I ever had to leave home Alaska.

Look at me now: sporting a global audience

Apparently, someone from India typed "what is meant by expense ratio in Gold ETF" into the Indian version of Google and it looks like my blog shows up on page 2. Then, they clicked through to my post on gold ETFs. Who is reading this worthless drivel? I've got visits from Malaysia, Canada, UK, Greece, India, Germany, Denmark, and the Netherlands. However, the vast majority of my whopping 201 pageviews come from my wife's blog.

And one person has viewed this blog on their iPhone.

Yeah, I discovered the stats page. Color me confused.

Monday, February 7, 2011


I was teaching history to my four oldest kids today; we were covering the twilight of the Moghul empire. When I wrote the name of the Sayyid brothers on the white board, I asked, "Based on their names Hussain and Hassan, what religion were they?" (Husayn ibn Ali and Hasan ibn Ali were grandsons of Mohamed)

My younger son, who loves to guess at answers without putting any thought into what he's saying before hand, said, "Russian. Pirate. Catholic." But he ran the words together, trying to get as many guesses out there before anyone else spoke up... so it came out sounding like he said, "Russian Pirate Catholic."

My youngest, who has just started babbling incessantly (you parents know what I'm talking about), told her first joke today:
SQ: Knock, Knock.
Me: Who's there?
SQ: Kangaroo.
Me: Kangaroo who?
SQ: Poop.
(raucous, gut-busting laughter from the siblings)

Doing it right

Five 6-8 year old girls did it Acapella [sic]. And (LIVE). With no orchestra. Without singing off-key. Without screwing up the lyrics. And they sounded a heckuva lot better than Christina Aguilera.

As Mac said in Tender Mercies, "Sing it the way you feel it." Watching "Xtina" butcher the National Anthem reminded me of the very next scene in that excellent movie, in which Dixie is hypocritically singing "Over You."

Okay, I'm done Christina-bashing. For now. Now, if you haven't seen Tender Mercies, go watch it right now on Netflix. If you have seen it, watch it again.

Christina, you ain't no Whitney

Not only is Whitney a much more talented singer, but she also actually took the effort to learn the words to the National Anthem before going on television before millions of viewers. To top it off, I think Whitney is a class act (exceedingly poor taste in men notwithstanding), unlike the skankoriffic Christina Aguilera, whose "apology" on Twitter for butchering the National Anthem consisted of:
Acapella, (LIVE) with no orchestra,..millions of people watching!! Like @nickiminaj said..."Haters you can kill yourself"! HA! #superbowl
Wow. Such class. I think I'm in love. As Bob Parks notes:
The old school way: apologize and let things die down. Americans are very forgiving.
The new skool way: Tell people to die after you make excuses for your screw up.
At least Roseanne got the words right (don't follow this link if you have a weak stomach) when she squealed it for a Padres game in 1990. It's pretty bad when you make Roseanne Barr look good.

And yes, I still have a little bit of a crush on Whitney Houston.