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Bloviating Zeppelin: February 2011

Bloviating Zeppelin

(in-ep-toc'-ra-cy) - a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Public Service Question:

Question for my readers:



People generally revere or deride FDR; as you can see, he held collective bargaining in disfavor as applied to the public service sector. What, you ask, is the rough definition for "collective bargaining"?
Negotiation between organized workers and their employer or employers to determine wages, hours, rules, and working conditions.

The State of Wisconsin, for example, is pushing for the complete elimination of collective bargaining for its public service workers. As a matter of fact, the bill did pass. This movement will now continue on to other states.

The State of Fornicalia Little Hoover Commission wants to roll back pensions for existing employees, dump guaranteed retirement payouts and put more of the pension burden on workers.

All well and good because, moreover, the public sector employee is responsible for a good portion of today's economic ills in the nation.

So: goodbye collective bargaining, also.

If it is decided that collective bargaining should be eliminated for the emergency side of the public sector -- law enforcement and fire/medic response (dependent upon the model in your state) -- and the public sector is continued otherwise unchanged (no incentive pay, no chance to participate in bonuses during good times, no incentives/changes in status, conditions, environment, wages or rates based upon merit, performance, per-call/run service), then each state, county, city, agency, entity can proffer a position with wages convenient for it and applicants/recruits unable to afford or live on that rate may go directly to Hell and work in the fast food industry. Or something that pays better.

Or you can, as I wrote in AJ's blog, privatize law enforcement:
I hope to be retiring soon. It will be incredibly interesting to see the quality of law enforcement we will get in the future. But first you even have to find people interested in making the kinds of sacrifices demanded by the job. On both fronts: good luck with that.

Perhaps we should privatize all cops. You could pay per call. Those using lots of LE dollars on calls could be tossed into debtors' prisons because, of course, they're the ones producing the greatest amounts of problems. We could run a ticket, like a private box medic rig:

-First, taking the call: $190
-Processing and dispatching the call: $100
-Start Fee for responding vehicle: $50
-Plus mileage
-Plus idling/dwell time: $5 per minute (no charge if vehicle shut off)
-$250 per officer for first officer; subsequent officers @ $200 each for first hour
-Each additional hour, per officer, @$300
-Rounds fired from weapons, LTL weapons loads per unit, billed at replacement costs + 10%
-Injuries to officers billed at medical rates + time off + potential rehabilitation + 25%
-Damage to vehicles assessed at replacement/repair costs +10%

And so on.

All fees to be adjusted whenever necessary, so that the private provider doesn't bear the fiscal burden of additional taxes, fees, fines, and living costs by itself only. The private company will have a bottom line and stockholders to please, as you well know.

Private police should also logically be incentivized such as the private sector. More money for more citations, more money for greater number of arrests, bonuses for solving community problems, bonuses for reducing calls for service in given geographical areas.

This privatization thing for cops could work out well, it appears.

On the other hand, like everyone else, they could be RIF'd during tough times and, like the private sector, strike and walk out if they can get away with it.

They can also leave at any time and join another department at a moment's notice if it pays better and/or conditions are better.

Good luck getting people to work in high risk/low gain places like NY, LA, Detroit, Houston, New Orleans, Chicago, etc. Private cops would, naturally, want to work for Honolulu or Capitola or New Bedford or Coronado or Beverly Hills -- or not work in the field at all. Let someone else make poor pay, few benefits and be shot at, stabbed, spit upon, etc.

I'm starting to like this private sector thing. Yes, high risk but, potentially high gain with bonuses, 401Ks, paid incentives, etc. Otherwise: leave the job and find another.

Absent any of that, me, you, dear citizens -- either way -- will get the kind of law enforcement we deserve -- which, of course, is the law enforcement we pay for.

I'd kind of like to try privatization, myself. With my "old school" attitude and efficacy, I'd clean up the floor with today's kids.

So, final question: if you eliminate collective bargaining for public sector emergency response (police and fire), what do you think the outcome will be? Or should we privatize this venue? Make the emergency response playing field more "incentivized" like the private sector?

I have my own very specific ideas.

BZ

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Demography Is Prophecy

And I've written that countless times since my blog initiated in 2004.

It was common sense then and it's common sense now.

A Texas demographer officially concurred this past Thursday that Caucasoids are "finished" in, at least, Tejas:

Looking at population projections for Texas, demographer Steve Murdock concludes: "It's basically over for Anglos."

Two of every three Texas children are now non-Anglo and the trend line will become even more pronounced in the future, said Murdock, former U.S. Census Bureau director and now director of the Hobby Center for the Study of Texas at Rice University.

Steve Murdock.jpg
Steve Murdock

Today's Texas population can be divided into two groups, he said. One is an old and aging Anglo and the other is young and minority. Between 2000 and 2040, the state's public school enrollment will see a 15 percent decline in Anglo children while Hispanic children will make up a 213 percent increase, he said.

The state's largest county - Harris - will shed Anglos throughout the coming decades. By 2040, Harris County will have about 516, 000 fewer Anglos than lived in the Houston area in 2000, while the number of Hispanics will increase by 2.5 million during the same period, Murdock said. The projection assumes a net migration rate equal to one-half of 1990-2000.

Michael Savage, a poor messenger with a highly important message, continuously (and properly) emphasizes: borders, language and culture. He is, without a doubt, completely correct in his analysis of the basic and foundational precepts necessary to keep a country viable, independent, cohesive, sovereign.

- Without controlled and enforced borders you have no real nation-state;
- Without an enforced common language you have no real nation-state;
- Without a common culture, you have no real nation-state;

America, that "great experiment in progress," is an amalgam of persons united by common threads, and those threads should be: Borders. Language. Culture. E pluribus unum: "out of many, one."

With that in mind, I submit -- as I have prominently in the past -- that if you care for and admire the current state of political, cultural and governmental affairs in Mexico, then you are importing Mexico into the United States. And the US will, thusly, shortly become Norte Mejico.

Demography is prophecy.

And demography couldn't care less about the past.

It only knows what is.

You can at least say, now, that America is the last, best hope of the entire planet.

Can we say that ten years from now? Five years? Two years?

BZ

P.S.
Color me, evidently, highly ignorant. I still think my country belongs to me:


Friday, February 25, 2011

Libya: Complete Oil Shutdown?

From Reuters:


Feb 24 (Reuters) - Oil production in Libya is expected to shut down completely and could be lost for a prolonged period of time, Bank of America Merrill Lynch said on Thursday.

"We expect Libyan production to be shut down completely and we might lose sweet crudes from Libya for a prolonged period of time," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Sabine Schels told Reuters.

Schels said that the world faced the prospect of real supply shock in which the loss of 1.6 million barrels per day of sweet oil could potentially trigger a steep rise in prices and force a sharp reduction in demand to balance the system.

"Some of the supply can be replaced with Saudi light crude and some from SPR, but if the disruption is prolonged, we will need demand to drop to balance the system," Schels said.

Stand by. Impact coming.

BZ

Thursday, February 24, 2011

World Instability: Into Overdrive

Most Americans, unfortunately, are more concerned with what Steven Tyler says on American Idol than what is happening around them -- around the globe and in their country -- in their own back yards.

The erudites who read my blog and those of my Usual Suspects are people of a higher level of awareness and realize what is actually transpiring in their country and on the planet.

Oil hit $100 a barrel on Wednesday; just as I wrote on Wednesday. This is its highest price since 2008. Instability in Egypt and the Middle East is responsible. People the world over are getting nervous. Even China is clenching its security sphincter:

Yet in the past few days, after an online call to bring a “Jasmine Revolution” from the Middle East to China began circulating, the system has gone into overdrive. According to human rights groups, more than 100 activists have had their movements restricted since last Friday. Among them, five lawyers, including Mr Teng, have been detained.

More cities in Egypt erupted into violence. Kaddafi's relatives are fleeing. Saudi Arabia is taking a different tack: $37 billion dollars in paid bribes to its citizens: be nice. Don't riot. A great deal if you can pull it off. The Saudi King Abdullah can.

But perhaps BZ actually forecasts the truth: in writing about the vacuum created by the various revolutions in Egypt, Libya and other Middle Eastern states, I've submitted that the Muslim Brotherhood and/or other Islamist factions will step in. There is evidence, now, that this is in fact occurring. From the Al Arabiya News Channel (Buried, I note, very deeply in the article!):
Meanwhile Libya’s deputy foreign minister told E.U. ambassadors in Tripoli al-Qaeda has set up an Islamic emirate in Derna, in eastern Libya, headed by a former U.S. prisoner at Guantanamo Bay.

"Al-Qaeda has established an emirate in Derna led by Abdelkarim al-Hasadi, a former Guantanamo detainee," Khaled Khaim said.

Earlier, Italian Foreign Minister Francesco Franco Frattini said embattled Libyan leader Gaddafi had lost control of Cyrenaica and shared reports that an Islamic emirate had been declared there.

In Greece, there are still riots and strikes. In India, there are protests over unemployment and food prices. Oddly enough, it is India that has "outsourced" call centers from its own shores to other "lesser" countries. Sound familiar?

Even Ahmadinnerjacket now talks about circumspection (in words, not deeds):
(CNN) -- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Wednesday urged Middle East leaders to listen to the voices of citizens who have taken to the streets in masses to demand a change in government -- though such protests in his own country have been crushed with brute force.

Ahmadinejad "strongly recommended such leaders to let their peoples express their opinions," the Islamic Republic News Agency reported.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Obama kicks the DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) to the curb; Obama has told his Attorney General to stop defending the DOMA. The act defines marriage as one man married to one woman. Uh, perhaps not so much now. While the world melts around his shoulders, Mr Obama decides it's time to open the doors to one man, one man; one man, ten women; one man, one horse; one man, one beer bottle. Or ten. Who cares?

Each day brings a new challenge.

Forewarned is forearmed.

Perhaps literally.

BZ

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Oil: The American Calamity Is Coming


And there isn't a thing you or I can do about it.

Because no one, no one in this country, is or can be completely energy "independent" unless you are, perhaps, Amish. And even the Amish will take a coming hit.

You can try all you wish. But in this country as well as all others, everything revolves around oil.

And (stating the obvious) you can thank the Religious Left for our inability to take care of ourselves and stake a percentile of energy independence -- though it is a given that we have a huge stake in natural gas, and we have vast expanses of yet-untapped fields in the lower 48, Alaska and directly off both of our coasts.

We could be much more energy-independent -- had we wished this to occur.

In the meantime, when the price of every product goes up due to transport costs, when you wait in lines for $6 gas, when you can no longer get gas -- you only have the Religious Left to thank.

No nuclear plants. No coal plants. No gas plants. No electrical generation stations. No refineries built. No drilling. No tapping. No. No. No. And the Religious Left is about to reap what they have insisted not be sown.

And what might be the indicator (which most people seem to be ignoring) that is providing a massive clue? To wit, from Reuters:

(Reuters) - Oil held near 2-1/2 year highs on Tuesday, with worries about turmoil in Libya that sent prices soaring the previous session eased by expectations that OPEC and the International Energy Agency could meet any shortfall in oil supplies.

At least three international oil companies have halted production in Libya, which pumps nearly 2 percent of world output. Some companies have been pulling employees and their families out of Africa's third-largest producer, though others say they are keeping oil flowing there.

Oil prices surged as much as 6 percent on Monday, taking Brent crude in London to almost $109 a barrel at one point for the first time since 2008. Prices remained strong on Tuesday, but closer to $106.

"We've lost 300,000 bpd of production (in Libya) already with the potential for further cuts to output and exports," said Andy Lebow, a trader at MF Global in New York.

"The major underlying fear in the market is that these protests spread in the region to even larger producers like Saudi Arabia. While that might not look likely right now, even a hint of real problems there could send prices vertical."

Brent crude for April delivery rose 4 cents to settle at $105.78 a barrel, the highest close since September 2008 but off earlier highs of $108.57. Brent hit a 2-1/2 year high of $108.70 a barrel on Monday.

U.S. crude for March delivery, which expired on Tuesday, rose to $93.57 a barrel, after touching $94.49, the highest since October 2008. It was up $7.37 a barrel from Friday; although the market traded on Monday, it did not print an official settlement price due to a holiday.

These are roughly the highest gas prices in a given February since 1990:
The U.S. weekly average price per gallon is $3.19, up 54 cents from a year ago, and slightly higher than last week's $3.14. This was the highest price posted during the month of February since 1990, when the data became available. The most expensive regions again are New England at $3.23 and California at $3.56.

THE primary factor? Libya. Libya is the major producer of "light sweet crude" oil. And from there the petroleum box is shaken.

Few if any people saw this coming. There are any number of "educated" Opinists weighing in with their thoughts and screeds. But at this -- truly -- early point, I submit that no one clearly knows how or why this Egyptian then Libyan (and Middle Eastern) movement came about. It just is.

All we know -- now --is that, like a snowball rolling downhill, area and momentum is growing.

As opposed to Egypt, Libya's Muammar Kaddafi isn't giving up easily.

Hence the jump of oil prices of 8.5% in one sole day.

WAIT: THIS JUST IN:

Libya's Muammar Kaddafi to begin sabotaging oil facilities?
Pressed, my Libyan source acknowledged Gaddafi is a desperate, irrational man, and his threats to turn Libya into another Somalia at this point may be mostly bluffing. On the other hand, if Gaddafi in fact enjoys the loyalty of troops he thinks he has, he very well could take Libya to the brink of civil war, if not over.

There's been virtually no reliable information coming out of Tripoli, but a source close to the Gaddafi regime I did manage to get hold of told me the already terrible situation in Libya will get much worse. Among other things, Gaddafi has ordered security services to start sabotaging oil facilities. They will start by blowing up several oil pipelines, cutting off flow to Mediterranean ports. The sabotage, according to the insider, is meant to serve as a message to Libya's rebellious tribes: It's either me or chaos.

Two weeks ago this same man had told me the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt would never touch Libya. Gaddafi, he said, had a tight lock on all of the major tribes, the same ones that have kept him in power for the past 41 years. The man of course turned out to be wrong, and everything he now has to say about Gaddafi's intentions needs to be taken in that context. (See TIME's exclusive interview with Gaddafi.)

My Libyan source said that in order to understand Gaddafi's state of mind we need to understand that he feels deeply betrayed by the media, which he blames for sparking the revolt. In particular, he blames the Qatari TV station al-Jazeera, and is convinced it targeted him for purely political motivations. He also feels betrayed by the West because it has only encouraged the revolt. Over the weekend, he warned several European embassies that if he falls, the consequence will be a flood of African immigration that will "swamp" Europe.

Oil?

Hello?

Anyone listening?

Anyone?

BZ

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Landing: 24R At LAX

<a href="http://www.bing.com/videos/browse?mkt=en-us&vid=4ccf960e-b956-4395-8c53-492ceb1a2c98&from=en-us&fg=dest" target="_new" title="Twilight Landing At LAX">Video: Twilight Landing At LAX</a>

Thanks, Chris!

BZ

My Old Hands

I can remember, many years ago, thinking that I should take on a project when I was in my late teens.

I can remember thinking: wouldn't it be interesting to take a photograph of my face on my birthday on each successive year. I forgot about that thought, shunted it aside. I wish I'd taken myself up on that offer. I could have documented something that is, heretofore, undocumented.

Have you ever wanted to do something, like that, whilst you were young?

And then realized: it's too late?

I looked at my hands the other day.

They are, plain and simply: old. Wrinkled, puffy and unappealing.


I can recall, in the early 90s, Rick Taylor saying this to me: hold your hand loose, then pinch the back of your hand. If it's unaffected, you're young. If it takes a few seconds to recede, then you're old.

I am way old now. It takes damned near a month for my skin to recede when pinched.

However, I should care to point out that I am not sufficiently old to forget how to grip my Sig-Sauer P220 .45 cal handgun with its requisite Euro release and, as the photo indicates, a few extra magazines.


Just a reminder. To my government.

I'm old.

But not quite dead yet.

BZ

Monday, February 21, 2011

Unrest The World Over. . .


Why?

And why now?

And why so many countries?

BZ

P.S.
It's time to leave Monterey Bay and the Monterey Bay Inn. Seven days and eight nights and we had a wondrous anniversary time. We'll miss Berford the Seagull eyeballing us every morning:

And, of course, the beautiful bay itself replete with sea lions, otters, gulls, kelp and the crashing waves.

Time to drive home with all the other vacationers and prepare for the coming work week. We'll miss the beautiful views and the gorgeous nights.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Amazing History: Lewis & Clark Carried Air Rifles!

Check out the below video with regard to the amazing Girandoni air rifle (ca 1779), carried by Lewis & Clark's Corps of Discovery (1803 to 1806). This rifle could (with 1,500 pumps creating 800 psi) shoot up to forty consecutive .46 caliber round balls before loss of muzzle velocity and pressure. The tubular magazine held 22 balls.



Additionally, an excellent book on their journey is Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose.

BZ

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stopped: Funding for ObamaKare & "Net Neutrality"

The House voted on Friday (2-18) to block funding for ObamaKare.

Specifically, the House voted to prohibit any funds be used by the Internal Revenue Service to carry out the law's mandate that Americans buy health insurance. The individual mandate, one of the law's key tenets, has been struck down by federal courts.

The House also adopted an amendment by Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., to bar the Labor and Health and Human Services Departments from spending any money for the rest of fiscal year 2011 on the health care law. Still another provision adopted today would ban the government from paying the salaries of any federal employee involved in implementing the health care law.

Further, one day prior (Thursday, 2-17), the House stopped any funding for the FCC's application of so-called "net neutrality":
The amendment, approved on a 244-181 vote, was offered by Energy and Commerce Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden, R-Ore., to legislation that would fund government agencies for the rest of fiscal year 2011.

Walden and other critics of the FCC's net-neutrality order argue it will stifle innovation and investment in broadband. The order aims to bar broadband providers from discriminating against Internet content, services, or applications.

"If left unchallenged, this claim of authority would allow the FCC to regulate any matter it discussed in the national broadband plan," Walden said.

Mr Obama also, as you recall, wants to create an "OFF" switch for the US internet under the guise of Pulling The Big Red Handle only when the hacking is dangerous and the government is threatened. Instead, I posit, think: Egypt.

Mr Obama and the Leftists seem to forget that their administration isn't permanent and that, under a different administration, Handles can be pulled "whenever."

Anyone here doubt that a Leftist government wouldn't sever the internet if the internet were flying with the various Truths about oppression of freedom?

Me neither.

Gerald Celente makes an interesting observation which tends to tie many things together:
Celente believes the government will use this increased defense allowance to amass weapons and apparatuses that will control any dissent among the people. Citing a Feb. 15 article in the USA Today titled, Kill Switch Bill Alarms Privacy Experts, Jones says the government has already begun taking steps to control an uprising. They've openly stated that they want to be able to shut down the Internet and they're getting ready to launch a false flag using either a terrorist alert or the threat of war as an excuse to flip the kill switch.

Remove guns and weapons of all stripes from The People, disable communications, and you have much better control over citizens when you wish. And as we all know, those who lack the ability to defend themselves are called either 1) Dead or 2) Serfs.

Moves are being made, ladies and gentlemen, internationally and locally. Forewarned is forearmed. Literally.

BZ

Where Is Our Money Going, And Why Does No One Seem To Care?

First, view the below video (from May 5th, 2009) in which Rep Alan Grayson (D-Orlando -- a man who has sufficient problems himself but, in this instance, is dead-spot-on) asks questions of Elizabeth Coleman, whose job title is Inspector General of the Federal Reserve. The job title itself would, I can only assume, proffer the largest clue possible as to the specific job attached:



Yes, that's correct, we really still have no damned idea where billions and billions and billions of our dollars went. We assume they went to good causes, like banks -- where the assumption was that the "stimulus" would result in an uncorking of loans for those who can actually pay, etc. But still, in February of 2011, no one really knows where all this money went. I submit that perhaps we know more about the sex life of the average silverfish than the various resting places of that staggering amount of cash.

And, oh, yes: cash that YOU labored for, taken out of YOUR pockets by way of federal taxes. You were FORCED to give that money to the government so that IT could not have ANY idea where the money really went.

As I said a few years back, the banks that were "too big to fail"? Let them fail. Car manufacturers that were in that same category? Let them fail. Hell, GM fell anyway -- and then wanted MORE of your tax dollars. And got them!

Further, by shuttering many dealerships when the Fed took control of GM and Chrysler, your GOVERNMENT was responsible for the loss of tens of thousands of private sector jobs. I'm sure dealerships closed in your area as they did in mine.

Lord knows the stimulus money has been highly beneficial: the Northern Mariana Islands is applying for federal stimulus money that would go to foreign welfare recipients. The money would pay for food stamps and job training. You stimulus dollars ($823 million) also went to a study by a UCLA research team to teach uncircumcised African men how to wash their genitals after having sex.

Further:

In an unprecedented move, the number of investors fearing a catastrophic stock market crash is rising even with the stock market at 2 ½ year highs.

The unusual dislocation comes from two distinct reasons: a lack of trust in the U.S. financial markets following the so-called Flash Crash last May and the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2007.

Once again: precious metals.

BZ

P.S.
And let us not forget: Mr Obama wants to spend even MORE of your taxpayer dollars and -- concurrently -- print more money backed only by the sheerest of wafting air currents.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Theatrics?

Kill collective bargaining?

BZ

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Visiting The Monterey Bay Aquarium

For some, this post about the Monterey Bay Aquarium may be pedestrian; I apologize in advance. For those who have not yet attended, I proffer a few photographs illustrating a brief overview. Though I've been many times, I can't visit Monterey and not visit the aquarium; perhaps a gene askew or such.

Tuesday, my wife and I found ourselves one of only a documented three hundred visitors that day. The place appeared almost abandoned yet, on the other hand, it was wonderfully quiet. No yelling kids, squalling infants, no rude elbowing people -- just a host of visitors, of all races and nationalities, enjoying themselves and availing themselves of the various exhibits, videos, pools, tours and tanks. The staff couldn't wait to explain the various tanks and sites. Frankly, it was the finest time I've yet had at the aquarium. Ever. [Contrast this with the summer, when staff indicates the aquarium sees up to 10,000 people per day.]

Above, Toola the Otter poses pointedly (chin on paw) in a fashion heretofore undocumented. MacKenzie, our guide at the otter pool, said she'd never seen Toola in such a contemplative and yet coy and demure mood.
In the kelp forest, all sorts of Big Fish (and some smaller ones too) laze about in the ebb and flow of the recreated ocean environment -- one of the tallest tanks (at 24+ feet) in the world. Kelp in Monterey Bay, by the by, grows up to four inches -- per day. Looking up, you'd think you're in the bay itself. Simply spectacular.
It's 4 pm and that means: feeding time in the kelp forest. A lemon shark attempting to go vertical "nut-nibbling"?
Alphonso the Diver explains the feeding regimen for the various fish -- including sharks -- in the kelp forest. Wearing a full-face mask and connected by a single air line to the surface some twenty feet above, Alphonso alternately sounds like Darth Vader and himself. He and every diver in the facility are volunteers. These positions are so coveted that divers wait for three or more years to be able to clean the tanks, much less feed the fish in public.
Big shrimp. Massive-antenna'd shrimp. Scowling shrimp. You want a piece'a me? Go ahead buddy, stick your finger down here! Heh-heh.
Beautiful, wafting anemones.
A delicate Pacific Seahorse. These creatures seem like little audio animatronic entities or CGI 3D projections. In fact, male seahorses become pregnant and give birth, just like my former Governator.
The wonder of the Monterey Bay Aquarium is that the creatures are brought to life before your eyes -- and, though they live just behind incredibly- and-deceptively-thick acrylic sheets (you'll bonk your noggin or your hand at least once, being fooled by the perspective), the creatures seem as real and as near as if you were diving amongst them.
Outside, the Pacific waves continue to batter Monterey's rocky shores. Monterey Bay sits on the precipice of one of the most sheer and deepest canyons in the Pacific -- transitioning from a few hundred feet and then straight down to roughly 6,000 feet.

Excellent overview of the Monterey Canyon here. And one of the very few places in the world where, should you choose to visit, you will see seals and sea otters and whales and feathered friends in most every shade and stripe. And likely they'll be no more than twenty feet in front of you.

Does the above view look familiar? Perhaps you should check out Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), wherein the Cetacean Institute was, in fact, the Monterey Bay Aquarium.


Ah, memories.

Fair skies, calm seas, cascading swells, azure caps, hissing waves, the Pacific is just that.

BZ

[Click on each photo to enlarge markedly.]



Wednesday, February 16, 2011

White Dallas Commissioner Tells Black Citizens: "All of you are black. Go to hell."


Now that I've acquired your attention, I'm sure you'll agree that scenario would garner public and media attention for, literally, weeks on end. There would be immediate calls for resignations and, beyond that, investigations into endemic commission racism, corruption and, further, calls for federal action and potential prison time exposure.

Now do the reverse, for that is the truth. From CBS/DFW.com:

Updated 10:25 p.m. Feb. 15 2011

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Tuesday’s Dallas County Commissioner’s Court meeting erupted into an argument between Commissioner John Wiley Price and a citizen, ending with Price repeatedly telling several citizens to “go to hell.”

The exchange started during the public speaking portion of the meeting, which happens after the commissioners have gone through their weekly agenda.

Six citizens addressed the court. All of them talked about the recent controversial departure of county Elections Administrator Bruce Sherbet. Sherbet, who was the Elections Administrator for 24 years, said he felt Price and Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins forced him out.

The last public speaker at Tuesday’s meeting, Jeff Turner, began by stating that he would refer to “a certain member of the court” — Price — as “the Chief Mulllah of Dallas County.”

Court rules state that public speakers may not address individual commissioners by name.

As Price stood to leave, he looked at Turner and the five other citizens who addressed the court. Price said to them, “All of you are white. Go to hell!

Price repeated “go to hell” three more times. An unknown member of the audience said, “You should be ashamed!”

“I’m not ashamed!” Price answered. “I’m not ashamed! Go to hell!”

Read the entire article and draw your own conclusions.

I can only summarize that, had the roles been reversed, clear racial lines would have been drawn and people would have been fired, investigated and perchance even prosecuted.

BZ

Right Below The Veranda

Our friendly, neighborhood Peeping Gull, who perches on the iron railing every morning.
The Wake-Up Seal, who slaps his flipper into the water every morning at 8 am like clockwork whether we want to arise or not (we sleep with the door open). Why does he slap the water with his flipper -- to stun fish? To announce his presence? -- we don't know.
Mom Otter. Pup isn't far away. Mom, as you can see, is tagged (as are most local otters in Monterey, depending upon the study.), and attempts to break into a brightly-colored starfish.
Mom and pup. Mom found the grub, broke it up into perfect chunks and then shared with pup.
The sailboat Tierra Lynn (#56086, 46-feet, 25 tons, manufactured in 1999 by Cantiere del Pardo SRL, Italy) heads north out of Monterey Harbor heeling seriously to starboard in the wind.

And all of this wondrous activity directly out and below our 4th-floor veranda. Sorry, no rain, some clouds, no fog, a bit of wind, but gorgeous weather. You simply can't go anywhere near the water in Monterey and not see marine and aerial wildlife.

BZ

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Lontano In Vacanza!





Whilst the rest of the United Snakes of America wrestles with snow, ice, freezing rain, bad traffic, delayed borborigmus, flatulence, flooding, power outages, ice storms and Ebola -- the wife and I are celebrating our fourth anniversary (on Valentine's Day) at the Monterey Bay Inn, overlooking the wondrous and stellar Monterey Bay in bereft Fornicalia.

Last night we partook of Bubba Gump's (a simple but guilty pleasure), hosted by the effervescent Chantal. We strolled Cannery Row at night with minimal crowds. We fell asleep on the pillow-top bed to the sound of waves crashing -- as you can see -- literally and directly below the veranda.

Monday morning, we were greeted with seals barking, gulls singing and the sight of a fleet of otters, floating amidst the kelp, bobbing on cerulean waves. The sky was blue, the sea was green, clouds scudded past. We are here, in the fourth (top) floor corner suite, until this coming Sunday. There may be some rain on the horizon but, at this point, we don't much care. As you can see, we've had some feathered guests drop occasionally by.

Earlier today (Monday) we stopped at REI in Marina and purchased a pair of Vibram FiveFingers for my wife. I'm a little hesitant to do so for myself but, trooper that she is, she wore them for a good four hours after the purchase. They're not cheap; $90 for this pair. There is a separate "cloven hoof" model for State of Fornicalia politicians. They cost three times as much but, no problem, they're paid by taxpayer dollars.

We hit the Borders in Marina as well, and stocked up with some new books: The Fallen (Parts 1 & 2) for my wife, and T. Jefferson Parker's Iron River in trade paperback for me.

Tonight we're ordering room service from Schooners. Or perhaps some local pizza. We haven't yet decided.

The view is incredible. We can see directly across the bay to both Moss Landing (with its two huge towers) and, further to the west, Santa Cruz -- where I once worked for the S.O. But that's another story entirely.

Uh-oh. Knock at the door. Pizza's here. Gotta go.

BZ

[Click on photos to enlarge them significantly.]


Sunday, February 13, 2011

GOP Potential Candidates: NO and YES

Apparently Texas Representative Ron Paul, in a recent straw query at CPAC, polls currently as the Number One GOP presidential preference.


I'll provide you with a few moments to fully digest that. (Please avail yourself of the Jeopardy "waiting" music below.)



Meanwhile, back at the ranch, retired Army Lt Colonel and Florida Representative Allen West (R) closed the 2011 CPAC with a speech that inspired and rang true. Speed through this video up to 8:45 -- then Lt Col West appears, motivates and enlightens:



[Go here for a much more condensed and highly-edited version.]

Yes, you know Conservatives: racists all. It's just us white overlords trying to keep the black man down. Except that it is Leftists who typify West as "one of the most vulnerable Congressmen" in DC -- ripe for immediate attack only 35 days into his term. And Leftists are definitely attacking. The greater the fear, I submit, the greater the attack. I said that with Palin, I say that with West.

The problem is: Lt Col Allen West knows and exemplifies dignity, honor and courage.

Ron Paul: NO.

Lt Col Allen West: YES.

BZ



Saturday, February 12, 2011

Even The French Admit: "Multi-Kulti" = FAILURE


And, of course, due to the Historical Alzheimers of Leftists and, in particular, our good Mr Obama, we learn nothing from history and are doomed to repeat what has already failed in the attempted Perfect Socialist/Multi-Kulti Experiment in Europe.


Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel already stated the obvious back in October of 2010. Article is here.

Now, French President Nicolas Sarkozy says:

PARIS (AFP) – French President Nicolas Sarkozy declared Thursday that multiculturalism had failed, joining a growing number of world leaders or ex-leaders who have condemned it.

"My answer is clearly yes, it is a failure," he said in a televisioninterview when asked about the policy which advocates that host societies welcome and foster distinct cultural and religious immigrant groups.

"Of course we must all respect differences, but we do not want... a society where communities coexist side by side.

"If you come to France, you accept to melt into a single community, which is the national community, and if you do not want to accept that, you cannot be welcome in France," the right-wing president said.

"The French national community cannot accept a change in its lifestyle, equality between men and women... freedom for little girls to go to school," he said.

"We have been too concerned about the identity of the person who was arriving and not enough about the identity of the country that was receiving him," Sarkozy said in the TFI channel show.

British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Australia's ex-prime minister John Howard and Spanish ex-premier Jose Maria Aznar have also recently said multicultural policies have not successfully integrated immigrants.

Merkel in October said efforts towards multiculturalism in Germany had "failed, totally."

The comment followed weeks of anguished debate sparked by the huge popularity of a book by a central banker saying that immigrants, in particular Muslims, were making Germany "more stupid."

Britain's Cameron last week pronounced his country's long-standing policy of multiculturalism a failure, calling for better integration of young Muslims to combat home-grown extremism.

He urged a "more active, muscular liberalism" where equal rights, the rule of law, freedom of speech and democracy are actively promoted to create a stronger national identity.

The prime minister, who took power in May 2010, argued that "under the doctrine of state multiculturalism, we have encouraged different cultures to live separate lives, apart from each other and the mainstream".

He said this had resulted in a lack of national identity in Britain which had made some young Muslims turn to extremist ideology.

Sarkozy said in his television interview Thursday that "our Muslim compatriots must be able to practise their religion, as any citizen can," but he noted "we in France do not want people to pray in an ostentatious way in the street."

And isn't it odd that the so-called "more enlightened" Europeans are themselves coming to their senses whilst, simultaneously, Leftists in this country demand that non-nationals, illegal invaders and religious catastrophists -- under the guise of a good and decent Islam (of which there is no such thing in all practicality -- as I say: "Islam is as Islam does.") -- be accommodated by the American Taxpayer and the lawful American citizen.

In the meantime, the above photo generally prevails in America -- Americans afraid of and bowing to Islam by our current administration.

And -- how sad -- this after 9/11.

BZ

Friday, February 11, 2011

USAF Col Richard L Alley: Two Years Gone


My father passed away on this day, February 11th, 2009.

I find it difficult to believe that his passing occurred two years ago.

My wife and I received the call from my brother a short time after 3:30 in the morning -- when my father had died.

I thought that the pain would gradually go away and, to a degree, it has.

Yet, on the other hand, his passing is as fresh to me now as then.

He was a member of The Greatest Generation. Those who made so many major sacrifices for our great nation, kept us safe in our beds, and kept the country uninvaded. Their incredible sacrifices. Though they didn't necessarily want to do so. He fought in B-17s. He trained in B-25s. It was almost the perfect triumvirate: his brother Jim signed up for the Army; his youngest brother Bill enlisted in the Navy (and had the USS Yorktown sink underneath him). My father went for the Army Air Force.

If you want to digest the quintessential document of sacrifice, read "With The Old Breed" by Eugene B. Sledge. Astounding. Simply astounding. Or perhaps the superior (but lesser read) Bert Stiles book: "Serenade To The Big Bird."

They didn't want to be there, they feared, they wanted to run away. And yet they persevered.

God bless you, Dad.

I think about you every day.

And I write this post through a film of tears. My throat constricts. I still miss you terribly.

You would have been 91 this year.

BZ


[Both photos are not prototypical; they are of my father as an instructor, and in flight school. Click photos to expand. -BZ]

Thursday, February 10, 2011

AFGE: A Perfect Time To Demand More Money For Federal Employees



I would deign to suggest the only "mental retards" are in the video. However, evidently perfectly emulating their Idol, Mr Obama, they are likewise resoundingly Tone Deaf and have yet to determine the temper of the times.


And yes, I realize that not all public sector employees are this functionally damaged.

BZ


Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Question for the GOP: do you REFUSE to raise the debt ceiling and shut down the US Government?


The Left want to raise the debt ceiling and, at the same time, won't consider real budget cuts. The United States budget expires on March 4th.

Simultaneously, the GOP seems to be, overall, remarkably silent on the matter. I don't see McConnell and Boehner calling for radical cuts or the outright elimination of cabinet positions. So far, only $32 billion dollars have been put up for cuts. Less than 1% of the proposed budget. Less than 1%. That is, budgetarily speaking, a globule of phlegm in the bucket.

This is occurring whilst, at the same time, Mr Obama is attempting to project himself as more the "centrist" -- I'm sure you've been reading all the media hype about Mr Obama The Centrist, centrist here, centrist there, all over the DEM/MSM. As Politico writes, Mr Obama is indeed playing the media like a perfect Stradivarius. And some voters are buying it.

Mr Obama, the New and Improved Centrist. Perhaps he did learn something from Willie J.

But again, GOP, myself and many of my fellow bloggers -- and the recent November voters -- are broadcasting in what I call "the clear." And the message is clear. Those in DC need not only to stop the spending, but to start the cutting. NOT raising a budget isn't a "budget cut" as portrayed by politicians. A cut is a cut. Nothing less will do.

There are those who are saying and writing that a failure to increase the debt ceiling will cause the American economy to completely collapse.

George Will said:

I know of no other developed nation that has a debt ceiling. This is a purely recurring symbolic vote to make people feel good by voting against it.

The trouble is it’s suicidal if you should happen to miscalculate and have all kinds of people voting against it as a symbolic vote and turn out to be a majority. Because if the United States defaults on its sovereign debt, the markets will be — well, it will be stimulating.




Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, said in January: “The debt ceiling is not something to toy with. If we get to the point where you’ve damaged the full faith and credit of the United States, that would be the first default in history caused purely by insanity.” Goolsbee also noted that the impact of blocking a debt ceiling raise on the economy would be “catastrophic” and would bring on “a worse financial economic crisis than anything we saw in 2008.”

The sky would indeed fall.

Concurrently, we all know that the Debt Bomb has been hurled from the national bomb bay, and it is set to impact at some point. There is no avoiding it.

The bomb is falling, but those politicians on the ground, instead of seeking mitigation or firing a Patriot missile or utilizing the CIWS, are instead gazing longingly at their own navels, rife with corruptive lint. They know, by the way: they have their own bomb shelters into which they shall duck, and will predominantly not be harmed. They have "theirs." YOU are on your own.

All of this reminds me of a divided group of passengers aboard the RMS Titanic arguing as to how to arrange the deck chairs for proper aesthetic visual impact, whilst the bow drops precipitously into the Atlantic.

And still: the House will vote, next week, on possible blockage to funding ObamaKare. The House, of course, won't have the requisite courage. Votes votes votes! Perceptions!

Curiouser and curiouser, I say.

Question: do we raise the debt ceiling, or do we refuse and risk "Armageddon"?

BZ

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Real Women Have Curves


I hadn't thought about this in a while, but comments made by some men I recently overheard made me want to archive my thoughts on the subject.

Whilst conducting my solo afternoon repast at a popular and trendy lunch spot last week (most of their food sucks and is fit for miniscule herbivores; the soup, however, is great when it's cold outside), I chanced to overhear a group of men -- sotto voce -- offer their comments on a young blond woman who had just entered the establishment and joined the line to order.

Before we proceed with the comments, I should care to delineate the nature of both parties: the men, young, in their mid-to-late twenties and -- the woman -- in her early 30s, about 5'9" tall, with very long blond hair, attractively curled down to the small of her back, very thick and purposely, perfectly casual, with Revos, French-manicured white nails, pouty lips and -- in your writer's humble opinion -- rail thin.

This chick had no hips, no thighs, no calves, no breasts -- but was exquisitely tanned with, admittedly, beautiful hair. At her estimated 5'9" height, I would guess she weighed perhaps 100 or 105 pounds -- at most.

She was about as appealing -- to me -- as a 6-foot chunk of Douglas Fir, standard or better.

She did have, as I observed, veins throughout the exposed portions of her body: on her hands, on the tops of her feet, on her exposed arms. The cheeks on her face were drawn, with high and fashionable cheekbones, though she had no cheeks on her ass to speak of. When she turned her neck, vertical lines appeared under her prominent jaw.

She reminded me of a significantly-taller Holly Hunter whilst playing "Saving Grace." Check here:


The table of dudes oooh'd and aaaah'd over her overall approach. They whispered amongst themselves excitedly.

Frankly, she turned my stomach. If I wanted a living female example of Gray's Anatomy, or Bodies, The Exhibition -- then I'd choose her. Absent that, I couldn't be more repulsed.

I want my women with curves. And I submit this: the bulk of American Men want their women with curves as well.

Unfortunately, most American Women don't realize this and/or don't listen to what their men say.

Women are held to a Standard that WOMEN set for themselves -- not what MEN want.

Men DON'T want "Twiggy":


They don't want their women to look like Dachau survivors.

I am proud to say that all of my former girlfriends and wives weren't rails. They were actual women and exhibited their womanly traits. They were the prototypes of their gender, to their credit. No matter what they think of me or me of them, I cannot dispute that they were more "woman" than the bulk of their peers. They were and are exceptional.

Again, no matter what they think of me.

My wife is no less.

She and my former girlfriends/wife possess the Classic Hourglass Figure.

I loved them and adored them because of it. I didn't try to remake them. I accepted them then and now for who they were/are/shall be.

No one is perfect. Least of all me.

But the "ideal" that is promulgated by American and Euro Media? That is a standard that can't be matched by mortal humans. Which results in skewed anticipations on both sides of the aisle.

I love my women with curves.

Real Men want Real Women with curves.

Plain and simple.

BZ