Thursday, October 30, 2014

Friday Funnies


And That's When the Fight Started...


Not News

The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, announced today that he is gay.  I sorta thought we were beyond caring.  But I'm watching the NBC evening news and it's one of the headline stories.  Why?  Who cares?  I thought we were beyond all that.  Especially NBC, a bastion of liberal thought.  It's perplexing.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Motivation Monday

Now this is one motivated teacher!


Common Sense

It seems that the Ebola stories are accelerating.  And it seems like everyone is an expert.  Opinions abound.  Recommendations are not in short supply.  Hysteria rules the day.  Recriminations and accusations are plentiful.

Amidst all the craziness I saw a blog post by my favorite opinion writer and author, Peggy Noonan.  It's titled "The Travel Ban and the New Czar" and you can read it here.

As usual, Ms Noonan hits the nail on the head in several areas.  She cleverly and logically divided the current issues into 3 parts.  She talks about the handling of the issue by the Administration, the travel ban issue, and the new Czar.

Regarding the handling of the issue the best quote is:
The only thing that will calm the public is competence. Until they see it, warnings about hysteria will be experienced as patronizing and deeply self-serving.
She makes a powerful case for a travel ban for the countries in West Africa who are most involved.  The reality is that the Administration is making no sense on this issue.  Restricting Visas for people from those countries only makes sense.
On the subject of a travel ban, the administration and those media members who function as its allies have produced a number of airy statements and sentiments. All of it feels of deliberate obfuscation and confusing of issues.
The burden is on those who oppose a ban to make a hard, factual, coherent and concrete case. It is telling that so far they have not been able to.
As far as the appointment of the political operative, Ron Klain, as the Ebola Czar, it's laughable.  But not really.  What it really is is sad.  This guy has been appointed to manage the spin, pure and simple.
More significant is that he is a longtime, hard-line Democratic Party operative who is known more for spin and debate prep than high-level management. That suggests the White House sees the Ebola crisis as foremost a political messaging problem. The president certainly seems unafraid of appearing to see the problem as a political messaging one. His primary focus when choosing Klain looks self-indulgent: “Who do I trust and like to work with?” as opposed to “What does the public require and the situation demand?”
 
 


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Hysteria

Okay people...everyone just calm down.  I mean seriously!  More than being worried about Ebola, I'm really more worried about he sensationalist loving media (cable, network, internet, tabloids, etc.). It seems that every time there is some event, no matter what it is, the media descends, sensationalizes, picks it to death, looks for blame, calls for firings, and moves to the next thing.  We go from event to event, disaster to disaster continually thinking that things are "going to hell in a hand basket".

Now don't get me wrong.  Ebola is a big problem.  Our government has made some mistakes.  Some big ones.  They have been slow to react.  Not every word in every press conference is perfect.  Some of the hospitals have made mistakes.  The people infected have made mistakes.  But they are all human.  I'm no fan of Obama and his cronies and I certainly think they are ill equipped to handle a national emergency, but the unrelenting blaming, accusations, and questioning that is obviously aimed at finding a gotcha is really tiresome.

Since I've retired I've been really busy doing a lot of things I enjoy and that I hope are helpful to society in their own way.  But once in a while I have a down day with not a lot to do.  When I'm sitting around the house I've taken to checking out the various cable TV news stations.  I also do this at the gym where there is no choice.  No matter what channel I choose it's the same thing.  Unrelenting repeated reporting on whatever they can find that fits their political agenda and their political philosophy.  Both ends of the spectrum are just as bad.  And don't tell me to watch NPR.  They have their own agenda.  A pox on all their houses.

Academic vs. Practical

Saw a brilliant post over at CDR Salamander.  You can read it here.  He quotes Adm Rickover about people who are inclined to the academic vs the practical.  In a short, succinct post, he has captured what I believe is largely the reason we're in such a mess as a country.  Check it out.  He also provides one of my favorite all time quotes from William F. Buckley.  Can't resist to copy it here for your edification.  Classic!
"I'd rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University." 


Monday, October 13, 2014

Musings

If you've been reading the blog for a while, you may have noticed that I haven't been posting much lately.  My son rightly noticed and told me to get my sh!t together and and get back with it.  And he has a point.  I admit to being lazy.  I've blamed it on being on vacation, on playing a lot of golf, on doing all the things I wind up doing in retirement that seem to keep me busier than I expected.  So as I thought about getting back in the game it struck me that maybe one of the reasons I've not been very active on the blog is because there is just too damn much to comment on.  It is almost mind-boggling.  Here's just a partial list of the issues and a comment or two on them.  Over the next few weeks I'll try and put a little more meat on the bones.

  • ISIS--if this isn't the subject of the day, I don't know what is.  It is beyond my how some don't view these assholes as an existential threat to the U.S. and our way of life.  It is clear that Obama is only playing lip service.  The ridiculously weak air campaign (if you can call it that) is for show...for politics.  This cancer is being allowed to spread and we will pay for it one of these days.  And it will be a steep price.
  • Ebola--scary but not overwhelming.  We have the capacity and capability to manage this scare. The problem is who do you believe?  It's come to the point that almost no one in government is believable.  Like many things, it's very political.  Why not stop flights from West Africa?  Why not set up regional isolation and treatment centers?  Why not tell the truth?  Because it's political.
  • Bergdahl--Slime
  • Snowden--Double slime!
  • The election--we're a little less than a month out and it's really getting tiresome.  The lies, the ridiculous claims, the polls, the pundits, the predictions...it's just getting to be too much.  My prediction is that the Republicans will take the Senate.  Of course, most think that so I'm not out on a limb.  All I know is that another potential check on this rogue President would be a good thing.  
  • The NFL--the games are great but the other stuff is almost out of control.  Abuse claims, drugs, the money...tiresome.  Just play the damn game.
  • The drought--here in California, the drought is getting bad.  But we've seen this before.  All of nature goes in cycles.  And this too will pass.  It won't be pleasant and there will be lots of angst, but it will pass.
  • The Market--yikes!
  • Idiot of the year--Susan Rice.  Actually she's probably idiot of the century.
  • Hillary--it's going to be interesting.  I'm thinking it's not going to be the walk in the park that everyone thinks.  Or maybe I'm hoping that.  Don't know.  Either way it'll be fun to see Bubba in action again.   Don't really know why she wants to do it.  Power I guess.
There are others but these come to mind.  Will have more in the coming weeks as I find the time.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Friday Funnies

took this during our recent trip to Prague.  These guys really need a course in Marketing 101!