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I Won’t Let You Down October 27, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Science.
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Jaw Dropping!


Sky Dancers October 23, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Entertainment, Personal Experiences.
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Nanjing Youth Olympic trailer, 500 people dancing in the sky.



Hat tip to Traveling Opi and Tula.

It Begins October 19, 2014

Posted by Sobek in News.
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I’d say something like “remember how they promised that …” but we all know you can’t shame the shameless.

What a Difference 11 Weeks Makes October 17, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
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Why You Should Never Lend Your Car to Sobek October 15, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
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Guy Lets His Artist Wife Doodle With a Sharpie Pen on His Nissan Skyline GTR

Hitler and Ebola October 15, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Ducks, Music.
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Sub-title language warning.


Marines Battle South Koreans October 14, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in News.
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Don’t worry, it’s all in good fun and no drums were harmed.

R.I.P. Paul Revere October 7, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Music.
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I regret that I never had the pleasure of seeing Paul Revere and the Raiders live, they were excellent showmen.

Paul died today in Idaho after a bout with cancer.

I watched several YouTube videos to get the best one for this post. I like this one with Dick Clark.



KTVB local news story.

Scott Slant:

Totally off the sports path now, with memories of Paul Revere, who died Saturday at the age of 76 in Garden Valley. When I was a very young music director at KFXD, Paul Revere & The Raiders were Boise’s claim to fame in the rock & roll world, and through all his world travels, he always called Boise home. When the group was about to release a new record, Revere would ride his chopper out to KFXD’s old studios on Amity Road south of Meridian and bring us a test pressing. So it was in January of 1971, when it had been a couple years since the Raiders had a hit. Revere was excited about this new release, which had “Birds of a Feather” on one side and “Indian Reservation” on the other.

Revere thought “Birds of a Feather” had a chance to be a smash. He asked me to play both sides of the record on my show that night and take votes from listeners. So I did—and “Indian Reservation” was the winner by a 3-to-1 margin. The song went right onto KFXD’s playlist, and it shot to No. 1 locally. Revere then embarked on a city-by-city tour with close Boise friend Mike Allen on their choppers and visited radio stations to promote “Indian Reservation,” and about five months after its debut on KFXD, the song was No. 1 in the nation, the group’s only million-selling single. Revere made sure KFXD was awarded a certified gold record for its efforts. He was one of the best businessmen in showbiz, parlaying Paul Revere & The Raiders’ popularity into over four more decades of crowd-pleasing entertainment—he didn’t retire until this spring.


Last Letter Home October 6, 2014

Posted by Retired Geezer in Heroes.
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Marc Lee was KIA a few weeks after he wrote this letter. He was good friends with Chris Kyle, whose story will be told in the new movie, American Sniper.

Marc’s Last Letter Home

Glory is something that some men chase and others find themselves stumbling upon, not expecting it to find them. Either way it is a noble gesture that one finds bestowed upon them. My question is when does glory fade away and become a wrongful crusade, or an unjustified means by which consumes one completely?

I have seen war. I have seen death, the sorrow that encompasses your entire being as a man breathes his last. I can only pray and hope that none of you will ever have to experience some of these things I have seen and felt here.

I have felt fear and have felt adrenaline pump through my veins making me seem invincible. I will be honest and say that some of the things I have seen here are unjustified and uncalled for. However for the most part we are helping this country. It will take more years than most expect, but we will get Iraq to stand on its own feet.

Most of what I have seen here I will never really mention or speak of, only due to the nature of those involved. I have seen a man give his food to a hungry child and family. Today I saw a hospital that most of us would refuse to receive treatment from. The filth and smell would allow most of us to not be able to stand to enter, let alone get medicine from. However you will be relieved to know that coalition forces have started to provide security for and supply medicine and equipment to help aid in the cause.


Jonathan Cohn’s Failed Defense of Obamacare October 5, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
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Jonathan Cohn of the New Republic wrote a defense of Obamacare a week ago, raising 7 points that he thinks show how Obamacare has been successful after its first year.

  1. More people have health insurance.
  2. People who are getting health insurance are almost certainly better off.
  3. “Winners” probably outnumbered “losers” in the new marketplaces.
  4. Premiums in the marketplaces aren’t rising quickly, and more insurers are jumping in to compete.
  5. Employer premiums also aren’t rising quickly.
  6. Overall health care costs are rising at historically low rates.
  7. The net effect on the budget has been to reduce the deficit.

That sounds great, like the plan is working as intended and everybody’s happy now, right?

But ahem. As usual I have a million problems with these claims. And as usual I have a chart. I say “a” chart because I’m just going to focus on #6 for the moment (Mickey Kaus went after #3 and #4): the notion that health care costs are rising really slowly.

He shows this chart, which immediately makes me suspicious, because bundling up the years like that smears the data and smacks of cherry-picking:


So let’s see how that looks when we actually plot it out year-by-year:*


Oh yeah. Starting from 1990, just like they did, we find that the average rate of increase since then (the sexy blue dotted line) is exactly equal to the projected rate of increase henceforth (the green line beyond 2013). So there is no “historically low rate” – that’s a figment of his Obamacentric imagination.

These numbers come straight from the CMS (here and here), the same source of the data that Cohn used. I just used it honestly.

*(I apologize for not having data between 1991 and 1999. The CMS data I found in reports that covered those years is inconsistent with the data they currently report (I checked 1990, and 2000-2004). So I left it out. It’s around 13% during the 90’s)

The 40% President October 4, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
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I mentioned in the comments on the last post that it seems like every single one of the President’s economic policies has given us only 40% of what he claimed it would. That’s certainly the case with manufacturing employment, as shown in the last post, and it’s also true about exports, which he promised in the 2010 SotU address to double within 5 years.

Essential to economic recovery, he said. Major priority, he said. But this is his result:


There it is again, that 40% number. Can you really claim victory when your oh-so-vital parts of your economic recovery plan flunk?

Well, this president and his wife certainly do.

The October 2014 Tepid Unemployment Report and Obama’s Lies About Manufacturing October 3, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.
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The BLS released the unemployment numbers for September today, showing a drop in the (completely useless) U3 unemployment rate from 6.1% to 5.9%. It wasn’t a bad month, but it wasn’t that good. Here’s how I think it looks:


So we creep along, but at least it’s upward.

Meanwhile, on the manufacturing jobs front, the AP is happy to help President Obama lie directly to our faces:

President Barack Obama is putting a manufacturing focus on his revived economic message, calling attention to industrial gains that have helped restore some higher-wage jobs during the recovery from the Great Recession.

The U.S. economy has created 700,000 manufacturing jobs since its low point of 11.45 million jobs in February 2010.

It’s absolutely true that we’ve created 700K jobs since the low point. But it’s also true that he promised us 1 million jobs since that low point. This graph doesn’t go back to the low point, but I’ll just tell you that the economy generated 500K jobs before this chart starts.


Add the jobs he’s created in the last two years, and you can see that we’re at 700K jobs added since the low point. But he promised that we’d add 1 million jobs between September 2012 and September 2016. As you can see, we’re now at the halfway point, so we should have added 500K jobs.

We’ve only added 212K. In fact, we’re still 400K jobs short of where we were when he took office.

So great work there, champ. Please tell us more about the awesome economic success you’re having.