Author Archives: R.D. Walker

Ebola due to budget cuts

Natch…

As the federal government frantically works to combat the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and as it responds to a second diagnosis of the disease at home, one of the country’s top health officials says a vaccine likely would have already been discovered were it not for budget cuts.

Dr. Francis Collins, the head of the National Institutes of Health, said that a decade of stagnant spending has “slowed down” research on all items, including vaccinations for infectious diseases. As a result, he said, the international community has been left playing catch-up on a potentially avoidable humanitarian catastrophe.

Budget cuts! It’s the catch-all excuse for everything! Did you over-sleep this morning? Did you spill your coffee? Did you cut yourself shaving? Did you trip on the welcome mat as you left for work?? Blame it on sequestration and budget cuts. Blaming the Republicans means never having to say you’re sorry!

blame

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FBI Director says you can’t trust the government

He sounds like a Revoista here.

FBI Director James Comey says you can’t trust anybody — especially the US government.

“I believe that Americans should be deeply skeptical of government power — you cannot trust people in power,’’ the director said in a surprisingly candid interview that aired on CBS’s “60 Minutes’’ on Sunday night.

“The Founders knew that,’’ Comey said, adding, “That’s why they divided power among three branches, to set interest against interest.”
Still, Comey insisted that his agency isn’t watching us illegally.

“We don’t do electronic surveillance without a court order,” he said.

“We cannot read your e-mails or listen to your calls without going to a federal judge, making a showing of probable cause.”

Of course the irony here is that, Comey, as a member of the government, cannot be trusted.

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Five year old forced to sign ‘suicide/homicide’ contract

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If the research is corrupt, the ‘science’ is corrupt

The favorite scientific fallacy of the left is the ‘appeal to authority’. Here is how that works:

The professor says neutrinos are made of cotton candy. The professor is an expert on neutrinos. Therefore, neutrinos are made of cotton candy.

Here is an example. Al Gore makes and appeal to authority:




So how does the peer review process work? It often works like this.

How reliable is academic research? Not very it seems, after noting that the Journal of Vibration and Control, a reputable academic publication, had to retract 60 different papers over the summer.

The editors concluded that Chen-Yuan Chen, a researcher in Taiwan, had created a “peer-review and citation ring.”

OK, it’s not exactly a “Sopranos” plot. But it’s pretty shady for the world of higher education. Chen went to great lengths to make up fake e-mail addresses and even assume the names of other scientists to write approvingly of his own research.

In a sense, though, he was just exploiting the deep flaws of the peer review system. The academy has become a kind of club where friends give friends flattering assessments of research, which essentially guarantees promotions and tenure.

Here’s how the former editor of the British Medical Journal explained peer review:

“The editor looks at the title of the paper and sends it to two friends whom the editor thinks know something about the subject. If both advise publication the editor sends it to the printers.

If both advise against publication the editor rejects the paper. If the reviewers disagree the editor sends it to a third reviewer and does whatever he or she advises. This…is little better than tossing a coin.”

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Fight against ISIS in tatters

Repeat after me: You cannot defeat an insurgency with airpower alone.

America’s plans to fight Islamic State are in ruins as the militant group’s fighters come close to capturing Kobani and have inflicted a heavy defeat on the Iraqi army west of Baghdad.

The US-led air attacks launched against Islamic State (also known as Isis) on 8 August in Iraq and 23 September in Syria have not worked. President Obama’s plan to “degrade and destroy” Islamic State has not even begun to achieve success. In both Syria and Iraq, Isis is expanding its control rather than contracting.

Isis reinforcements have been rushing towards Kobani in the past few days to ensure that they win a decisive victory over the Syrian Kurdish town’s remaining defenders. The group is willing to take heavy casualties in street fighting and from air attacks in order to add to the string of victories it has won in the four months since its forces captured Mosul, the second-largest city in Iraq, on 10 June. Part of the strength of the fundamentalist movement is a sense that there is something inevitable and divinely inspired about its victories, whether it is against superior numbers in Mosul or US airpower at Kobani.

How many times are we going to bomb the Ho Chi Minh Trail before we realize that it doesn’t kill the insurgency?

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Bob Woodward: Iraq is a mess

Woodward says that the battle will go on for years and if it can’t be won, “we are in for a calamity”. I guess that means we are in for a calamity. Obama is fighting the Islamists for the sake of polls. After the midterm elections, the fight will end.

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Africans: Believing Obama is a risky business…

How many West Africans will die by taking Obama at his word?

Speaking in a video message to residents of West African countries currently experiencing outbreaks of Ebola, President Barack Obama dispensed advice on how residents can avoid the disease, including:”You cannot get it through casual contact like sitting next to someone on a bus.”

At the same time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is advising Americans who travel to the Ebola-stricken nations to “avoid public transportation.”

I don’t have a hell of a lot of faith in either Obama or the CDC but I can tell you that I don’t need either to tell me not to get on a crowded, jostling, sweaty bus if there is any chance any of the other passengers are infected with Ebola. Sheesh.

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Scientists reinvent religion

Some physicists see signs the universe is giant computer simulation.

If recent measurements of cosmic ray particles are correct, then we may have the first evidence that the universe as we know it is really a giant computer simulation.

Humans have explored the laws of our universe for many years now, and it’s not uncommon to hear people talk about how amazing it is that certain fundamental values are just right for life to exist. Some people have wondered if that’s because the whole universe is actually some kind of sandbox simulation, and we’re merely characters in some cosmic game of The Sims. If that’s true, then there should be a point where we start to bump up against the edges of the simulator, like Jim Carrey’s character escaping from The Truman Show — and now a team of physicists think that a particular measurement of some cosmic ray particles might be the first such indication of one of those edges.

So it was all created by an intelligent designer who is watching the simulation as it plays out? The creator would, of course, operate beyond the physical laws that are part of the simulation. It would also mean there was some purpose in running the thing.

Fascinating.

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Michelle O is just phoning it in at this point…

Of course Bruce Bailey Braley doesn’t offer anything memorable…

What’s in a name? For Michelle Obama, a whole lot of confusion.

While campaigning in Des Moines, Iowa Friday for Democratic Senate candidate Bruce Braley, she referred to him multiple times as “Bailey” before she was corrected by someone shouting from the audience.

The flub came despite a huge array of signs in the hall where she was speaking, all spelling Braley’s name correctly.

The first lady also referred to Braley as a Marine Corps veteran, which he is not. Braley’s staff said she meant to refer to his late father, Byard Braley, a Marine who fought at Iwo Jima.

Braley’s opponent in the Senate race, Republican Joni Ernst, is a member of the Army reserve and National Guard.

Funny stuff, that is.

JoniErnstMilitary

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Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could pass an enabling act?

If you have ever wondered how so many dictators are able to gain totalitarian power through democratic means, here is an example.

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow lavished praise on President Barack Obama Thursday night during a Democratic National Committee fundraiser that took place at her Los Angeles home.

Speaking at the event, which had tickets starting at a minimum of $1,000 for the reception and $15,000 for the dinner, Paltrow introduced the president by saying, “I am one of your biggest fans, if not the biggest.”

The famous actress, joined by her children, continued to shower Obama with compliments.

According to the White House pool report, she said: It would be wonderful if we were able to give this man all of the power that he needs to pass the things that he needs to pass.

Western society is full of idiots who would happily give dictatorial power to their heroes.

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September snow cover in N. America highest on record

The missing global warming is obviously hidden in snow.

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Snow cover for September, by the way, was third highest on record for the Northern Hemisphere.

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Courts set back voter ID

SCOTUS and a district court issued rulings setting back voter ID laws.

The Supreme Court on Thursday night blocked Wisconsin from implementing its new voter identification law on the eve of next month’s elections.

In a related action, a district court judge in Texas ruled that state’s voter ID law is racially discriminatory and violates the Voting Rights Act. The state attorney general’s office said it would appeal.

Both Wisconsin and Texas had claimed the new rules were intended to crack down on instances in which voters impersonate others at the polls. Such incidents are extremely rare, courts have found.

The Supreme Court’s order reverses a trend established by the justices in two other cases from Ohio and North Carolina, in which they allowed voting restrictions imposed by Republican legislatures to take effect.

In all three cases, however, it appeared the court wanted to respect changes made by elected officials without confusing or disenfranchising voters.

In related news, police will still be allowed to break out your car window and taze you if you don’t have an ID.

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Perspective on the St. Louis shooting protests


I bet none of them will burn this flag…

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Freaky Friday Caption Contest

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US Ebola Patient Zero is Dead

NBC reports.

Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, died Wednesday morning, the Dallas hospital where he was being treated said.

Duncan was given the experimental Ebola drug brincidofovir, but his family said he was doing poorly and the hospital had downgraded his condition from serious to critical. When the family visited, they declined to view him via video link because the last time had been too upsetting.

Pray the virus died with him and doesn’t live on in others.

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California dives into bed with the citizenry

car

I never want to hear another damned thing about conservative efforts to regulate sex lives.

Under the California law, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Sunday night, colleges must require “affirmative, conscious and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity,” which can be verbal or communicated through actions. Consent to one kind of contact cannot be taken to mean consent to another. So an encounter that progresses from kissing to intercourse would require not one go-ahead but several.

Liberals claim that conservatives want to impose their social agenda on others. Yet it is liberals who have radically redefined ‘marriage’ to mean something other than what it has universally meant since the dawn of human civilization.

Now the government of California has inserted itself between the sweaty bodies of college students and imposed legislatively approved definitions defining government mandated foreplay procedures.

The political class that tore down marriage and gave us ‘free love’ has now given the state legislature a role in whether sexual intercourse is or isn’t legitimate.

I guess doing so was necessary for the left because there is no such thing as a ceremony in which two people, before witnesses, commit to each other socially and legally and agree to become “one flesh”. Now that would be radical, huh?

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Who killed the idea of big government?

Victor Davis Hanson says that Obama killed it.

The lasting legacy of Obama will be that he has largely discredited the idea of big government, of which he was so passionate an advocate. Almost every major agency of the federal government, many of them with a hallowed tradition of bipartisan competence, have now been rendered either dysfunctional or politicized — or both — largely because of politically driven appointments of unqualified people, or ideological agendas that were incompatible with the agency’s mission.

VDH goes on and explains how Obama’s economic cargo cult along with endless scandals, corruption and malfeasance has left the the United States government resembling a third-world, tin-pot, banana republic. The effect includes a compliant, fawning state media, a mass of demoralized citizens and a state apparatus that every single citizen recognizes as virtually incapable of telling the truth. You should read it all.

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Your Nation of Cowards Update

swings

Now swingsets are too dangerous for America’s hothouse children.

Richland schools are phasing out swings on the playground citing that they have caused most injuries of any play equipment.

“As schools get modernized or renovated or as we’re doing work on the playground equipment, we’ll take out the swings. It’s just really a safety issue, swings have been determined to be the most unsafe of all the playground equipment on a playground,” Richland School District’s Steve Aagard told KEPR.

The district also cited that pressure from insurance companies over the liability is part of the issue. Some of the swings have already been removed from some campuses and the rest will be phased out.

A society so protective and so litigious that children are not allowed to swing will be incapable of doing great things.

This is what the Greatest Generation grew up playing on in Cedar Rapids.

Click to enlarge
playground

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IRS still targeting Obama’s enemies

Why not? No one has been punished for doing it except conservative groups.

The producer of a new movie that criticizes Obamacare has reportedly become the latest prominent conservative slapped with an IRS audit.

Logan Clements, producer of “Sick and Sicker: ObamaCare Canadian Style,” announced via press release Tuesday that he is being audited for the first time ever.

“I had never been audited before I made this movie,” he says in a YouTube video. “There seems to be a pattern here.”

The news comes one month after the conservative Breitbart News announced that it, too, was being audited and that the action was probably politically motivated.

Read more.

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In a nation in which you don’t need an ID to vote…

Do not tell the police that you don’t have an ID.

My brother lives in Shanghai, China. He is aware that he doesn’t live in a free country.

That said, he goes where he wants, reads what he wants, buys what he wants, eats what he wants. He says that, on any given day, he feels as free as he did when he lived in Dallas. Day-to-day, there is really no difference.

Every once in a while, however, he is reminded that he doesn’t live in a free country and it is a bit jarring. I won’t go into details but the shit that reminds him that he doesn’t live in a free country is just about exactly like the bullshit in the video above.

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The friend of our friend is al Qaeda

The Free Syrian Army is the ‘vetted’ enemy of Assad that is being supplied by the US. It is also allied with Islamist groups including al Qaeda.

The Free Syrian Army has recently allied with Islamist rebels fighting in al Harah, a town in the southern Syrian province of Deraa. Elements from the Free Syrian Army coordinated their efforts with the Islamist Syrian Revolutionaries Front, the Islamic Front, and the Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official affiliate in Syria, to take the al Harah Hill and the surrounding town.

The Free Syrian Army utilized several BGM-71 TOW anti-tank missiles during the fighting, which the United States supplied to “vetted groups” in April.

The Free Syrian Army, fighting along side allied Islamists, uses an American TOW missile below.

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Lois Lerner attempts to bust into a neighbor’s house

“I don’t want her in my house.” Dude, she doesn’t just want in your house, she wants to know the content of your prayers!

Normally I don’t go in for these heavy handed tactics but, dang, this is satisfying. On the other hand, going much further might make some feel that the big bully is herself being bullied. She deserves no sympathy.

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The fight over same sex marriage is over

In not hearing cases regarding same sex marriage, SCOTUS ends the fight.

The Supreme Court on Monday turned away appeals from five states looking to prohibit gay marriage, effectively legalizing same-sex marriage in those states and likely others — but also leaving the issue unresolved nationally.

The justices rejected appeals from Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. The court’s order immediately ends delays on gay marriage in those states.

Couples in six other states — Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia and Wyoming — also should be able to get married in short order. Those states would be bound by the same appellate rulings that were put on hold pending the Supreme Court’s review. That would make same-sex marriage legal in 30 states and the District of Columbia.

The bottom line: Lower-court opinions, which said the Constitution provides a right for same-sex couples to marry, are now the law. I am not very clear where in the Constitution language that trumps the 10th Amendment provides for gay marriage, but like the right that allows mothers to kill their unborn children, we will just have to accept that it is there.

On the other hand, not all the circuit courts have ruled. The Fifth, Sixth and 11th Circuits could yet issue an opinions allowing state bans to stand. If that happens, SCOTUS will have to take that case.

I wouldn’t hold your breath, however. Thousands of same sex couples have married coast-to-coast. SCOTUS isn’t likely to invalidate those marriages. You might as well get used to it. Same sex marriage is here to stay.

Another day, another blow to self-governance, state rights and small ‘r’ republicanism. State legislatures are increasingly irrelevant. In the future, all laws will be made in the imperial capital city.

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California bans plastic bags

People are going to get sick and the state is going to use more water.

For years, green groups have lobbied for plastic bag bans in cities across America. Free-market advocates, meanwhile, called these bans an ineffective government intrusion.

Now, for Californians anyway, canvas sacks will be the new norm for carrying groceries. These reusable bags, green activists claim, reduce waste. But they also get dirty after a few uses.

“Coercing people to use cloth shopping bags will subject people to unnecessary health risks caused by festering bacteria from prior food purchases contaminating newly bought food,” said James Taylor, senior fellow for environmental policy at the Heartland Institute, an Illinois-based free-market think tank.

To avoid contamination and sickness, it’s recommended that consumers wash their reusable shopping bags after every use.

That means using more water. That’s not a major problem, unless you happen to live in a state experiencing the worst drought in its recorded history, which California currently is.

I am not clear on one thing, however. Banning this problematic plastic bag in California may affect the 2016 election.

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Why would Obama make the election about himself?

The Atlantic asks…

The president made headlines last week during a speech on the economy, where he implored voters not to make any errors: “Now, I am not on the ballot this fall …. But make no mistake: These policies are on the ballot—every single one of them.” On Sunday’s Meet the Press, his former chief strategist David Axelrod said it was Obama who’d made a “mistake.”

The case against Obama’s remark is simple enough: Democrats are on the verge of losing their hold on the Senate. The president’s approval ratings aren’t great anywhere these days, and his party will only hold on if its candidate can survive in Southern states where Obama is especially unpopular—places like Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana. These candidates are eager to make the race about anything other than the president—because if it’s a referendum on him, the attack ads, as they say, write themselves.

It’s probably unwise to question David Axelrod’s strategic sense, but there might be something to Obama’s strategy. Some critiques from other analysts have seemed to assume that Obama had simply blundered or misspoken on the dais. But that line was in the prepared remarks. Presumably it was carefully thought out—so it could still be a strategic misstep, but it was clearly a calculated line.

What would make the president say such a thing?

The author goes on and provides a complete, strategic explanation as to why Obama would do this. You can click in the site and read it but I don’t advise it. The reason I don’t advise it is that it is pure hogwash. The reason Obama made the election about himself is very simple. The man is a clinical narcissist. To Obama, everything in the world is about him.

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