We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Tuesday, June 1. 2010
Photo: Thought you might want to see what a blowout preventer looks like. These are around 5 stories high, resemble space aliens, and cost around $10 million.
What is Feminism about nowadays? Not equality
Samuelson: US poverty rates are meaningless
Glum prospects for Law grads
Kagan's Odd Harvard Reform
A student loan crisis. Crisis?
Why Faculty Unions Could Destroy Our Universities
Why Kristof is a jerk. Powerline
Stossel: What if going green is a bunch of BS? - link fixed
Why a mosque next to the WTC? Gates
Good summary from Dr. C. of America at the Crossroads. Them are the core issues.
What America wants re illegal immigration
Driscoll's quote of the day the other day:
The flow of oil may soon end, but the political and environmental fallout is just getting started. Newsweek
Greece urged to give up euro. It would not surprise me if they do.
Spanking Thad McCotter
Photo below from The Other McCain's "indigenous Mexicans"
Also, I advise scrolling down a bit to see what goodies you might have missed over the holiday weekend - I did.
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"White racists go back to Europe"
That's funny. How about "La Raza Cosmica regresa a México?"
Dumb-ass Mexicans scratch gourd wondering how come white folks find them amusing.
Hey Chico and Tacita, I ain't foreigner.
I am native American and NEW Mexican and methinks, yall wet backs ought get back across to Mexico, sooner than later.
Come on back and visit after yalls' give up outlawry and have some spending loot.
Come on back and visit after yalls' give up outlawry and have some spending loot, Chico.
Just in case anybody is interested, a blow out preventer of the type used on Deepwater Horizon relies on three major methods of stopping the flow - two hydraulic and one manual which, in theory, is supposed to be done with ROVs. The reason is that oil is under pressure at all times from either natural gas or pressure from the surrounding rock or salt strata (normal depth pressures). Pressure on land can reach as high as 6,000 psi, under water (at the depth of Deepwater Horizon's well head) it can reach as much as 3,800 psi. Remember the old films of "oil gushers"? That's why the oil was spraying everywhere.
There are two basic types of valves - one called a ram valve and the other is called an annular valve. The ram valve is exactly that - a ram powered by hydraulics or mechanically that shuts off the flow of oil. Think of these as "pinchers". The annular valve is a rubber/steel device that is actuated in the same fashion as the ram valve, but creates a better seal. They can be set for different operating pressures.
In the case of the Deepwater Horizon's well head, the preventer worked partially meaning that the ram/annular system hydrauics worked, but some as yet unknown reason, didn't close all the way. The manual systems were rendered inoperative when the rig collapsed.
There is a fourth way to close a preventer which is usually required on all deep water projects - an acoustic actuator on one of the mechanical valves. When this preventer was built, the Mineral Materials Service waived the requirement for an acoustic actuator which it has for quite a while under pressure from the oil industry. The acoustic actuator is requied by most other oil producing countries.
In the picture, what you are seeing with all those pipes and valves are the various types of ram/annular actuators.
The probem with Deepwater Horizon is that the pipe leading to the surface collapsed when the rig collapsed. On the videos where you see the leak, that is actually at the top of the preventer - the pipe that leads to the surface.
Just in case you are wondering, in another life time, I worked for Schlumberger under contract for Texaco Oil in the Gulf of Mexico as a "resident" oil rig engineer. :>)
Excellent Eric Schele post on Thad McCotter. I see the Congressman now as a tragic figure:
"Et tu, McCotter?"
Word to la raza (small letters all, 'cause theirs is a minor-league deal all the way): We "white Europeans" own this land - our ancestors bought it[.i], with blood and sweat; unlike [i]yours, who lost it, or you, who showed up, illegally, mostly-unwanted and mostly-unneeded about thirty years to ten minutes ago.
We won, you lost - learn to live with it, or go away.
Don't like the way we run our country? Who asked you? Not us.
And what makes you think your opinion matters, or should matter? Certainly not justified by anything intelligent or intelligible.
If you don't care for how things are here - politically, socially, employment-wise, etc. - feel free to return to whatever scummy rat-hole corner of a fourth-class third-world country you left to sneak across our border against the law. Your absence will not cause us any great hardship - and the loss of all the ugly noise, additional crime and public expense, and additional congestion you generate would be a relief. Don't let the big border-fence gate hit you in the butt on your way out. And take your whiny, over-indulged "natural-born citizen" offspring with you; they can come back when they're functioning, wage-earning-and-tax-paying adults (if ever), provided they learn to use English as their first language - meanwhile, you whelped 'em, you raise 'em; we don't want or need them.
I live for the day when I can routinely dial a public-service number in this country and hear, "If you need to continue this call in Espanol, press uno now", or some variation on that. In this country, English should be the default, not a "selection." Dual- (or even multi-) language signage is o.k., provided the basic message is not obscured or garbled, but that "press one for English" crap has gotta go!
I used to think that Texas was the probable location for open warfare to eventually begin against illegals - now, I think (if it comes - and it well may) Arizona is far more likely. Morons like those in that picture are going to keep pushing things - and the pot can easily boil over. Just one too many "reconquista" rally or a couple more deaths/extensive injuries due to wetback crime may trigger it at any time.
More links re: Hamas flotilla
Re Indigenous Nation of Aztlan--
People don't realize how close this is to fruition legally. Legislation is pending in Congress to create a separate "indigenous" race-based government in Hawaii for those who can show any trace of Native Hawaiian blood. It is anticipated the new "government" will be given the public lands of the state, among other things. It has one final vote in the Senate before becoming law, and Obama has already promised to sign it. All equal protection arguments are overcome by the assertion that those with Native Hawaiian blood comprise an "indigenous Indian Tribe," and thus are a "poltiical group," not a racial one. although Hawaiians have nothing in common with "tribes." (E.g., Hawaii was a multi-racial society ruled by a European-style monarchy prior to becoming part of the U.S.) The vast majority of "Native Hawaiians" have only a small percentage of indigenous blood, but that is irrelevant to the bill.
Once the Akaka Bill is passed and becomes law, it becomes the template for Mexicans to demand the same treatment, the goal being the creation of the Nation of Aztlan in Texas, California and the Southwest.
Jim ... Don't give up quite yet. We've been fighting the Mexican invaders here in Texas since before our Yellow Rose loyally distracted Santa Anna long enough for Sam Houston to beat that sucker at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836. We beat them then and we can lick' em now.
They are annoying. But they're not going to win.
The societal change hoped for at feministing is that women of a certain class and attitude will be given the highest status. The rest of you women can go to hell.
Is it possible to debase a college education even further than it's been debased? We have at least two generations of Americans who are not intelligent enough to preserve their own freedom.
The La Raza claim to represent indigenous peoples is ridiculous. First, it's usually stated in Spanish, the language of the Europeans who treated indigenous peoples the worst.
Second, there was never an Aztlan region. Before the area was Mexican territory, it was a Spanish colony. Before that, the region from the Mississippi to the Pacific, from the Marias River to the Isthmus of Panama, held many cultures and many peoples. They raided and oppressed each other when they could; they all were oppressed by, yes, Europeans who came to the Americas. But there was never one vast government before the Spanish, and scarcely a government under Spanish and Mexican rule.
But a little justice: the Americans did take the land from the Mexican government under a lot of duress and the indigenous people continued to suffer under American rule. It was probably inevitable and it was certainly tragic. Some Mexican landowners found themselves squatted out of the land they had claimed from the Indians.
La Raza is still a blatantly racist organization that would not be a good partner to the Crow, Cheyenne or Navajo tribes.
Geoff my friend ... If La Raza and its fellow activist organizations want a nice country, Mexico is rich in natural resources and beauty, if they would just clean up the corruption and cartels that taint everything down there. But no. They slink across our borders and try to take over our country instead, sending their least educated, least talented cast-offs to populate and harass us. And making strange and ignorant claims that our country is theirs.
Not bloody likely.
P.S. What is being ignored by La Raza and others is that*legal* American citizens of Hispanic background don't want them shoving in without seeking citizenship either.
If they want it, they should work for it, following the rules.
The photo says "white racists go back to europe" - how about the indigenous peoples of Mexico demand that the racist Spaniards go back to Europe? The Mayans, Aztecs, Toltecs, etc were either violently murdered or died from European diseases, nearly to extinction - dare I say racial cleansing? I say, Mexicans, look to your own country - there's plenty of racism there. I was told that those folks in Mexico that look more Mayan (short, darker, round faced) than Spanish (tall, lighter skinned, oblong, more 'European' face) have a mighty hard time getting a fair shake south of the border. Sure sounds like RACISSSSSSSSM to me!
Makes about as much sense to me as demanding that "Native Americans" go back to Asia, or everybody in the world go back to the Rift Valley.
If you intrude on a working system and screw it up, you'll make people impatient by complaining about the system and expecting them to solve the problems you created for yourself. On the other hand, if you have a system that works OK as long as it isn't exposed to competition, and it gets displaced, people will feel sorry for you, but you're still on the way out unless you want your culture to be preserved in what amounts to a zoo.