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Chuck attends a Feminist Rally August 31, 2019

Posted by Retired Geezer in Fashion, Heroes, Man Laws.
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Chuck Norris at Rally

Happy Labor Day.

From the Hysterical Headlines Department August 18, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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Every time I see a headline and lede like this:

Pot poisonings among kids, teens double after medical marijuana law passed

Calls related to cannabis exposure increased 140 percent in the years after Massachusetts voted to legalize medical pot in 2012, according to data from the state’s regional poison control center.

…it immediately makes me wonder: well, how many kids are we talking about? Is it really a significant number?

During the study period, poison control received 218 calls from Massachusetts involving pot exposure in children and teens.

And what was the length of the study period?

8 years.

I’m gonna say that in a population of about 6,500,000, an average of 27 calls per year is not a huge emergency.

Especially when the leading category of calls for kids under 6 is “Cosmetics/Personal Care Products.” Remembering that on average through the study there were 27 marijuana calls per year for kids AND teens, how many cosmetics calls do you think they got in 2016 for just kids under 5?


African Fish Eagle August 17, 2019

Posted by Sobek in News.
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This is the national bird of South Sudan. Here are some other interesting things to know about South Sudan:

  • It gained independence from Sudan in 2011.  It is the newest country in the world with widespread recognition. Kosovo is newer, but not as widely recognized.
  • The capital city is Juba, which has about half a million people.
  • The President of South Sudan is Salva Kiir Mayardit.  When he visited the US in 2006, he was given a black Stetson hat as a gift from President George W. Bush, and he liked it so much that he bought several more and rarely makes a public appearance without one.

No, Getting Shot By Police is Not a “Leading Cause of Death for Black Men.” August 16, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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Why you should never trust a “journalist.” Especially an LA Times journalist.

Getting shot by police is a leading cause of death for black men in America

About 1 in 1,000 black men and boys in America can expect to die at the hands of police, according to a new analysis of deaths involving law enforcement officers.

The incendiary headline, and the fact that, apparently, something like 17,000 police shootings of black men and boys are happening every year, leads you to believe that either our country’s law enforcement personnel are trigger-happy racists, . . . or that the author of the article totally screwed it up.

Of course it’s the latter.

During the study period, police use of force accounted for 1.6% of all deaths of black men between the ages of 20 and 24. It was also responsible for 1.2% of deaths of Latino and Native American men. However, police violence accounted for just 0.5% of deaths of white and Asian American men in that age range.


“1.6% of all deaths” doesn’t sound like “a leading cause of death.” While it is surprisingly high, it sounds like a cause of death that is down in the noise.

The other question is how many of those shootings were appropriate. I suspect it’s the vast majority, which would make that stat more relevant to criminal profiling than racism.

The Missing Flags: 2019 Update August 13, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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Michael used to love to keep track of the flag counter in the right sidebar, which shows which countries have visited this site. Despite our sporadic posting, we’ve had visitors from 225 countries. There are, however, 18 deadbeat countries who have not deigned to visit.

Maybe Sobek can draw some nekkid birds in come-hither poses to capture a few more countries.

Anyway, the list of the unenlightened is below the fold:


Why Did Chris Cuomo Get So Upset at Being Called “Fredo”? August 13, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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Maybe he didn’t hear it correctly.


The Frito Bandito, who I always thought was really cool, but apparently is racist.

Federal Budget: 1990 – 2019 August 13, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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A lot of people squawk about the budget, but most people just cherrypick the data to score a political point.

Not here at IB. Here at IB, we crank through chart after chart after painful chart to drag our weary brains to the truth. Because masochistic pedantry is what we like. Or what I like, at least.

So here’s what you owe (actual data through 2018, 2019 is CBO projection as of May):

Public Debt 1990-2019

A little depressing, no? “But,” you ask, “is it the fault of spending or of revenues?

I knew you wanted to know that, so I made this nice little chart for you:

Outlays 1990-2019

So discretionary outlays (of which half are spent on defense) aren’t really hurting us, but the big jump in mandatory outlays in 2009 has led us to a “new normal” where mandatory spending has risen from 10% to 12.5% of GDP.

As you can see from the debt increase, the new level of mandatory spending is unsustainable at our current revenue rates, which, BTW, are:


Kind of where they’ve always been.

Pretty clear that discretionary spending has recovered from its highs during the recession (I’m sure we all recall the spectacularly unsuccessful stimulus), and revenues have recovered from their lows during the recession, but the permanent increase in mandatory spending is sinking our battleship.

That increase is not really a Bush vs. Obama thing. It’s more a Nancy Pelosi/Harry Reid kind of thing.

Simone Biles Puts Me Some Effin’ Knowledge August 12, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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I was recently expounding (tediously and at great length, I’m sure) about how women’s gymnastics seemed to have hit a wall. With no new tricks, and with people already getting 10’s with the current repertoire, where was there to go?

It took only a couple of days for Simone Biles to shut me up:

First, with a triple-double on floor (the run starting at about 1:10):

…and then with a double-double dismount off the beam (at about 1:19):

Just wow.

She’s taking gymnastics to the point of being a superpower.

Yahoo Does the Sound and Fury, But it Don’t Signify August 11, 2019

Posted by geoff in News.
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Yahoo is a source of really bad, really liberal takes on current events, and today’s breathless article on a wave of emigration from America is no exception:

Frightened by shootings, appalled at Trump, Americans are voting with their feet — to leave

“Wow!” sez the curious reader, “Exactly how many people are leaving?”

Americans are not flocking to the exits, but some of them are thinking about it, and some are talking about it, and at least a few are acting on the idea.

So, no wave of emigration at all.

It’s like high school yearbook staffers are running the news department at Yahoo.

Two Warblers August 7, 2019

Posted by Sobek in News.
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Black-throated Gray Warbler


Yellow Warbler

Both of these guys could use some color, but I’m traveling and only brought my pencils so gray and white is what you get.

Here’s what I don’t get: my field guide lists like 25 species of warbler, but they all have the same body shape and only appear to differ in coloration. Are they really all different species?

Turkey Vulture August 6, 2019

Posted by Sobek in News.
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And a reminder that one day you will die.

Cedar Waxwing August 2, 2019

Posted by Sobek in News.
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This is a stylistic follow-up to my Steller’s Jay from last April.  I made it for a friend.