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
Monday, July 14. 2014
Tiny Houses Big With U.S. Owners Seeking Economic Freedom
We used to call these cabins
New Harvard Study Proves Why The Bees Are All Disappearing
Europe’s Anti-Art Laws - Will the EU’s pedestrian-safety regulations save lives, or just make cars ugly
Why Crossovers Conquered the American Highway
Atlantic City falling on hard times again
Film Critics Hate 'America'
The Government’s Here to Save You From Elmo
Uber/Lyft vs. taxis: Let the market decide, not taxi cartels and their government enablers — bureaucrats and legislators
Ex-J.P. Morgan Trader Joins Bitcoin Bulls Launching Hedge Funds
Portuguese bank crisis is the tip of the iceberg - Analysis: The deeper issue is the European Central Bank papering over economic problems
‘Dirty Harry’ Reid’s increasing eccentricity - Senate majority leader practices politics of personal destruction
Breaking developments in Sen. Reid pederast scandal; Reid camp to Ace of Spades HQ: Allegations are ‘cute,’ refuses to deny
Romney don't run
Maher Rips "Useless Obama Hacks" Over NSA Spying: "Liberals Would Be Apoplectic" Under Bush
President Obama apparently likes raising campaign funds.
David Brock Claims Hillary’s Bad Book Sales are a Vast Right Wing Conspiracy
Jesse Jackson hits Obama for putting immigrant children first
Google Co-Founders Sergey Brin & Larry Page: Health Care Regulation Is Blocking Innovation
Muslim Brotherhood Authorizes 'Anal Jihad' for Lonely Terrorists
So, Lawrence of Arabia walks into a gay bar in the Nefud Desert with a
I believe that Lawrence himself was gay
Obama, Translated - Whenever the president talks about himself, flip it so he’s saying the opposite.
According to owner Aaron Franklin, Obama was probably the first
NSA Whistleblower Speaks: "The Ultimate Goal is Total Population Control"
The border crisis isn’t Obama’s Katrina – it’s worse
The nation is getting furious about this, and I know why. First, they are showing contempt for our sovereignty and our laws from the start. Second, somebody invited them to come and Mexico is complicit. Third, these people are jumping the queue and exploiting the situation and exploiting the US. Fourth, many of these "children" are violent gang members. Well, I could go on.
I don't care what age these immigrants claim to be are or where they try to sign up for high school - they are not children and I do not want them in my neighborhood:
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Obama, Translated - Whenever the president talks about himself, flip it so he’s saying the opposite.
Isnt ths true for EVERYTHING a Democrat says?
Re; Bees' I just followed a semi-truck of bees going to commercial farms on the NYS thruway. Hundreds of hives. Compare this to the handful of hives in the Harvard study. I used to do a lot of statistics (for industrial research) and this is pathetic. But not as pathetic as the over ventilating of the blog post. A collapse of 50% of hives in commercial use would be business ending so as I watched the truckload of hives obviously this guy would not be in business next year (by comparison loss rates of 10% were disaster for the USAF in WWII bomber missions).
If you are going to do science be honest, thorough and consistent.
"If you are going to do science be honest, thorough and consistent."
There's no money in that. And definitely no social control of the population.
Besides, science is hard. Better to call yourself a scientist and do hack work.
heh. The science is settled. This is alarmism, coming from an article which begins,
"One area we are waking up to is the massive amount of pesticides we spray (especially in North America) on our food that has not only been linked to human disease, but a massive die off in the global bee population within the past few years."
and closes by saying:
If money wasn’t so important, we wouldn’t be finding unnatural ways to do everything on this planet. If we weren’t so concerned with maintaining an economy, issues such as these wouldn’t affect us. This is all a perfect lesson for us to ask “what the heck are we doing to our planet?” We are at a point where our very survival is now threatened because we are fighting so hard to maintain a system we all don’t like anyway.
“If the bee disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.” - Albert Einstein
Feeb here, it's a story complete with a finite number of years (like global warming) for which we have to live. It implies that 'natural is better' which should immediately discredit the article, and it cites Harvard which is undoubtedly in the tank for global warming, so why would this 'study' be any different than the 'global warming' studies? It also states pesticides cause illnesses. Really? Where are all the dead and hospitals full of people sick from pesticide exposure? This is all about advancing the 'organic is better' agenda.
There is this from Forbes:
"Despite the fact that neonicotinoids are widely used in Canada to protect canola from pests, Canadian bee populations have been largely unaffected and produce around 50 million pounds of canola honey. A large-scale Ontario field study funded by Bayer appears to back up the real life evidence challenging the activist doomsday scenario. It found no difference in colony health between hives exposed to neonics and those that weren’t, in real life conditions. “The doses the bees are exposed to [in lab studies] are far above what a realistic field dose exposure would be,” says Dr. Cynthia Scott-Dupree, head of the Ontario study. Canadian canola farmers say they have had 10 years of large scale use of neonics on canola with no observed ill effect.
Britain’s rapeseed crop, which is similar to canola but has a high acid content and is generally produced for animal feed, has not experienced serious bee losses either. The DEFRA study noted that oilseed rape (OSR) “requires insect pollinators to support its productivity. The fact that OSR treated with neonicotinoids has been a productive crop for over a decade in the UK is itself evidence that pollinator populations, including bees, are not being reduced by the presence of neonicotinoids.”
The article in Forbes goes on to say that parasitic mites on the bees could be carriers of a virus or bacterial infection that is killing the bees.
Finally, I would close by saying this; We have been using pesticides for 80 odd years including pesticides that were much more lethal than those produced today, so why would they suddenly wipe out bees now? One more question, the environmentalists always tell us how worthless pesticides are because insects develop resistance and render the pesticides useless. Well, why doesn't that same thinking apply to bees?
Thanks for this. Have you read any other informed speculations or studies seeking to explain the loss of our bees? I'd be interested if you could recommend other reading.
Re: Pelosi, Reid, David Brock, et al
It used to be that when someone was forced into making ridiculous things, they were laughed at and their position was exposed as absurd. Unfortunately, it appears that either people are so disengaged or lack critical thinking skills to recognize nonsense. I blame the schools and teacher's unions.
When you look at what their saying as keeping the faithful in line, its makes more sense. Then there's the need to take up a quiet collection (no coins).
The reason they say the ridiculous things they say is obvious. The fact that anybody takes them seriously is what's alarming.
Frugality and self sufficiency among the tiny house/cabin owners give hope for the future. Even though a tiny home development with prices starting at just the low six figures seems inevitable.
The Australian judge does make an uncomfortable point and a consensus it still taboo is the only bar. though wonder when the consensus would approve say, necrophilia?
For fun look up what happened when the politically correct Canadians had to deal with a influx of Mexican queue jumpers. Another angle to look is how many cartel members will claim the right to family life with their children.
Those aren't cabins. Those are trailers. I suppose now the trash will have to find a new place to live since trailers are going upscale?
Lawrence was gay? Surprise, surprise.
"Australian Judge Asks, If Homosexuality and Adultery Are Now Ok, Why Not Incest?"
And he's right. IMO it's none of the government's business who you have a relation with, sexual or otherwise.
I'm for protecting minors, though the "age of consent" is too rigorous and maybe too high. But that has more to do with protecting children from abusive parents (the majority of sexual abuse cases involving children) than anything else.
Would I want a sexual relation with my sister, niece, etc.? Heck no, we're not matching personalities, I'm not in any way attracted to them.
But it's nobody's darn business whether I am or not.
Same with homosexuality.
Heck, same with "normal" marriage. Government should not have any say in THAT either, and no special benefits for married couples either (or if they want those, make those utterly independent of the type of relationship, hetero, homosexual, polygamous, whatever).
Re: Film critics hate "America"
I'm not surprised. Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 911" got great reviews in spite of the fact that it is based on a lot of unsubstantiated/unproven invective. D'Souza offers he explanation for how somebody like Obummer was elected twice. There is nothing invective about the movie - not directed at Obummer, Ayers, Warren, Churchill, Zinn, or any of the other lefties he interviews and highlights.
I can only conclude that if the film told lies about a conservative or even was merely a nastygram for some Republican or Libertarian the critics would love it.
As for me and Mrs. Mudbug, we both loved it and thought it should be required viewing for all high school age kids.
For some mysterious reason Illinois has experienced very little CCD relative to most of the USA. Illinois is intensively farmed and pesticides are used on a massive scale. This strongly contradicts the findings of the Harvard study, which seems to me to just be another alarmist screed.
We have become so accustomed to blaming every human emotional differential on repressed homosexuality it seems we cannot consider other things: other conditions, other causes, etc.
Regarding T.E. Lawrence's sexuality I think the best (quick, easy, and reasoned) might be this:
Lawrence's biographers have discussed his sexuality at considerable length, and this discussion has spilled into the popular press.
There is no reliable evidence for consensual sexual intimacy between Lawrence and any person. His friends have expressed the opinion that he was asexual, and Lawrence himself specifically denied, in multiple private letters, any personal experience of sex. While there were suggestions that Lawrence had been intimate with Dahoum, who worked with Lawrence at a pre-war archaeological dig in Carchemish, and fellow-serviceman R.A.M. Guy, his biographers and contemporaries have found them unconvincing.
The dedication to his book Seven Pillars is a poem titled "To S.A." which opens:
I loved you, so I drew these tides of men into my hands
and wrote my will across the sky in stars
To earn you Freedom, the seven-pillared worthy house,
that your eyes might be shining for me
When we came.
Lawrence was never specific about the identity of "S.A." There are many theories which argue in favour of individual men, women, and the Arab nation. The most popular is that S.A. represents (at least in part) his companion Selim Ahmed, "Dahoum", who apparently died of typhus before 1918.
Although Lawrence lived in a period during which official opposition to homosexuality was strong, his writing on the subject was tolerant. In Seven Pillars, when discussing relationships between young male fighters in the war, he refers on one occasion to "the openness and honesty of perfect love" and on another to "friends quivering together in the yielding sand with intimate hot limbs in supreme embrace". In a letter to Charlotte Shaw he wrote "I've seen lots of man-and-man loves: very lovely and fortunate some of them were."
In both Seven Pillars and a 1919 letter to a military colleague, Lawrence describes an episode on 20 November 1917 in which, while reconnoitring Dera'a in disguise, he was captured by the Ottoman military, heavily beaten, and sexually abused by the local Bey and his guardsmen. The precise nature of the sexual contact is not specified. There have been allegations that the episode was an invention of Lawrence’s and (with some evidence) that the injuries Lawrence claims to have suffered were exaggerated. Although there is no independent testimony, the multiple consistent reports, and the absence of evidence for outright invention in Lawrence's works, make the account believable to his biographers. At least three of Lawrence's biographers (Malcolm Brown, John E. Mack, and Jeremy Wilson) have argued this episode had strong psychological effects on Lawrence which may explain some of his unconventional behaviour in later life.
There is considerable evidence that Lawrence was a masochist. In his description of the Dera'a beating, Lawrence wrote "a delicious warmth, probably sexual, was swelling through me", and also included a detailed description of the guards' whip in a style typical of masochists' writing. In later life, Lawrence arranged to pay a military colleague to administer beatings to him, and to be subjected to severe formal tests of fitness and stamina. While John Bruce, who first wrote on this topic, included some other claims which were not credible, Lawrence's biographers regard the beatings as established fact.
John E. Mack sees a possible connection between T. E.'s masochism and the childhood beatings he had received from his mother for routine misbehaviours. His brother Arnold thought the beatings had been given for the purpose of breaking T. E.'s will. Writing in 1997, Angus Calder noted that it is "astonishing" that earlier commentators discussing Lawrence's apparent masochism and self-loathing failed to consider the impact on Lawrence of having lost his brothers Frank and Will on the Western front, along with many other school friends.
I had to chuckle at the bee link. From a quote that Albert Einstein never said to a CCD that hasn't happened, he nonetheless weaved an earnest defense attorney's plea for action against neonics and demanded we ban something - anything - including the product that didn't even exist when the last real CCD happened and that is used in the 75% of Europe that has more bees than ever.