Sunday, November 30, 2008

Dead dreams

This shack was once a nice shack that a miner lived in. Then the U.S. government passed a law outlawing his mine and kicked him off his mining claim. There were once four buildings here, one of which was a nice home. They're all gone now except for this little shack and the little shed in the background, neither of which are now weathertight.

-- Badtux the Desert Penguin

My new camera

Well, after some research now have found a camera to replace my dead one: the Panasonic DMC-FZ28K.

Only thing I don't like about it is that it uses a proprietary battery, meaning that my NiMH rechargeables are useless with it. Oh well. A spare battery will be all I need, and that's cheap enough...

-- Badtux the Photography Penguin

Raising the next generation right

The next generation of Obama children, that is, who were taken to a food bank to hand out food to the poor on Thanksgiving Eve to remind them that there are a whole lot of Americans who aren't as well off as they are.

When was the last time that Dear Lame Duck Leader was in a food bank? Do you think Dear Lame Duck Leader even knows what a food bank is? Or has any idea why the notion of a food bank, in the world's wealthiest nation with a surplus of food for everybody, is a disgusting and disgraceful thing?

-- Badtux the Once-poor Penguin

Calm Sunday night music blogging

Ah, soothing...

-- Badtux the Snarky Penguin

It's nose lickin' good!

The Mighty Fang cleans his face after getting it a bit damp drinking out of the bathroom faucet. He does enjoy pestering me into watering him...

-- Badtux the Well-trained Penguin

Saturday, November 29, 2008

I wonder if the kitties missed me

They both met me at the door and meowed at me to pet them, but a couple of swipes at Mencken's head and he basically said "meh, that's enough" and went somewhere else. TMF was a bit more clingy though, "helping" me use the bathroom, take a shower, and do other things. (No, he didn't go *into* the shower, he just sat on the toilet seat and watched!).

They're both sleeping on their futon right now, so I guess they both got it out of their system. It is nice to be owned by two such forgiving cats :-).

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

The desert killed another camera

My Canon is now official deceased. Dead. Gone to meet its maker. Jammed with grit and unable to focus or properly retract and extend its lenses. Maybe I can take it apart and clean it out and get it working again, but I doubt it, I suspect the gears are all stripped and it's a four year old digital camera (i.e. obsolete) so no spare parts are available.

Sigh. Time to get another camera. Hopefully one more ruggedized than this one. Too bad the ruggedized cameras all suck. But WTF, what else can I do?

-- Badtux the Cameraless Penguin

Pushing on a string

The Fed is pouring money into banks in hopes that the banks loan the money out. The banks aren't loaning the money out because people are out of work and don't have the money to re-pay their loans, and loaning money to someone who can't re-pay their loan is hardly what any fiscally responsible lending officer is going to do (and with the threat of a Fed takeover hanging over their head, they're hardly going to be fiscally irresponsible right now).

What this is called, in Bernanke terms from his papers about the Great Depression, is "pushing on a string". You can flood the banking system with all the money you want, but if this money is just sitting in the bank because nobody can afford to borrow it, then it's useless. It's like pushing on a string. You're pushing all this money, but it's never making it down to the other end of the string (the consumers) to get them consuming because, well, you can't make the other end of a string move by pushing on one end. You have to pull on the other end too.

If people don't have money because they don't have jobs, then the practical way to get money into their hands so they can afford to start consuming again is to get them jobs. Whether this is done via job credits (paying employers to hire people), via public works projects (which, alas, today would likely only enrich Mexico because contractors refuse to hire Americans because Americans have rights and will report them if they violate federal labor laws), or via directly hiring these people in a CCC/WPA style Depression-era organization to clean up our roadsides and build park benches and trails and such, it's clear that the Bushevik/Bernanke plan of injecting liquidity into the banking system hasn't been enough to solve the problem because, well, people need jobs to borrow money and they don't have jobs or are fearing for their jobs thus can't/aren't borrowing.

We'll have to see whether President Obama will listen to the practical people who are telling him about strings and pushing upon, thereof. But until there's some pull from the consumer side of strings, pushing money into the banking system is pushing on a string and it's not going to work. Republican ideology, which is against programs that employ Americans, is the problem rather than the solution here. Let's hope Obama is ready and willing to ditch Republican ideology and return to pragmatic practicality, one aspect of which is that if people aren't consuming because they don't have jobs, then (duh) get them jobs. Yikes! Common sense! Too bad it ain't too common...

-- Badtux the Stringy Penguin

Cat TV

The Mighty Fang and Mencken entertain themselves by watching my (former) downstairs neighbors, the ones who carried on like a telenovella complete with the rapid-fire Spanish...

Boy I'm glad they're gone! Talk about your neighbors from hell, their kids tore up the landscaping, their patio always looked like an effin' rummage sale complete with old sofa (how redneck!), and the only reason they didn't have five cars up on blocks in the front yard is that there is no front yard in this apartment complex (heh!).

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Friday, November 28, 2008

Tired penguin

Been bashing / hiking around in the desert for the past week. Had a nice Thanksgiving dinner w/100 other folks in a remote desert outpost. Photos are down in the Jeep, and I'm too tired to go get them. Will report more later.

-- Badtux the Tired Penguin


The Mighty Fang sucks all the light out of my computer screen, he's so black...

-- Badtux the Blacked-out Penguin

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Gimme spider!

Wherein The Mighty Fang and Mencken are intently staring at a spider crawling across the ceiling. A few seconds later TMF looks at me and goes "Meeeeeerrrrow?". Sorry, TMF, I can't get the spider for you. Or, rather, won't!

-- Badtux the Arachniphobe Penguin

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

So how are they doing?

Are Mencken and The Mighty Fang doing their job properly of taking care of the blog while I'm on vacation?

-- Badtux the Cat-blogging Penguin


The beauty and the eee...

-- Badtux the Contrasts Penguin

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thought for the day

Perhaps a better paraphrase of H.L. Mencken's notation about "Puritans", rather than substituting "religious fundamentalists", would be to substitute the word "extremists". Because it is extremists in general, not just religious ones, who are motivated by the sneaking suspicion that someone, somewhere, is having fun -- and that this must be stopped.

-- Badtux the Observant Penguin


Hmm, this Asus eee PC looks like it needs grooming...

-- Badtux the Well-groomed Penguin

Monday, November 24, 2008


The Mighty Fang envisions life in the desert as he tries to fit into a duffel bag full of camping gear...

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Can someone change the channel? This channel is boring!

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Saturday, November 22, 2008


The Mighty Fang stalks a spider...

-- Badtux the Hunter-owned Penguin

Friday, November 21, 2008

When the stomach aches

Apparently I ate something that didn't sit right on my stomach yesterday. Last night it was like I was having an allergic attack, I wasn't hungry and my stomach felt bloated. This morning I still felt nauseous and had trouble belting down my tea to try to settle my stomach, I was still belching up the flavor of yesterday's lunch. I finally ate some Taco Hell "food" around 1:30PM and it seems to have done the trick... just got off the toilet after yesterday's food went "splotch!" in a liquid mess into the toilet. Ah, blessed relief!

This is supposed to be my vacation. Bummer :-(.

-- Badtux the Tummy-achin' Penguin


It's not arrogance when you really are the shiniest happiest kitty on the planet. Or even one annoyed by that penguin flashing bright lights at you.

-- Badtux the Arrogance Penguin

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Nobody's buying anything

Cars are piling up at ports. It takes weeks for a ship to carry them from Japan or Germany to a port like Long Beach. During those weeks, things changed. So now even imported cars are piling up, just as domestic cars are. When Toyota can't sell everything on their lots, you know things are bad...

-- Badtux the Economics Penguin

A disturbance in the Force

"Why, daddy? Why?"

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Texas law and Dick Cheney

Seems that Texas is unique in that their "Law of Parties" allows giving the death penalty to someone even if they did not themselves pull the trigger. So what does that mean for Darth Cheney and his murder indictment in South Texas? Not good, apparently. Assuming that Darth Cheney doesn't get a federal judge to squash it, he's going to be appearing in a Texas court responding to murder charges. And while Texans generally love their Republican politicians, one thing they do *not* love is someone from outside of Texas telling them how to do their bidness...

BTW, Aaron Burr and Spiro Agnew were both indicted while being seated Vice Presidents and there's nothing in the Constitution prohibiting any state from indicting a Vice President, so there's no law prohibiting this. But I don't expect it to have much legs anyhow, because the Constitution is a piece of toilet paper for politicians to wipe their asses on nowdays, rather than being the definitive document as to what is legal and not that they tell you in Civics class.

-- Badtux the Mildly Amused Penguin


Lozenge Cat wants me to go fetch that car for him, since Lozenge Cat has no legs...

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Too big to fail

The current official unemployment rate is 6.5%. The unofficial unemployment rate is 11.8%. Some economists estimate that if the Big 3 automakers go under, it will put approximately 15,000,000 Americans out of work once the effects ripple through the economy. The U.S. workforce has about 150,000,000 people in it, meaning that this would make the official unemployment rate be 16.5%, and the unofficial one be 21.8%.

That's Great Depression territory, folks. Sad to say, allowing Chrysler, GM, and Ford to fail is not an option right now. If the current unemployment rate was 2.5% like under the Clinton Administration and there were widespread labor shortages, that'd be one thing -- it'd hurt, but the economy could absorb 15,000,000 newly-unemployed people. But with the economy already hurting, this would be just one more step into the abyss of a deflationary spiral, and I don't think "Helicopter Ben" Bernanke can drop enough $100 bills out of helicopters to make >15% unemployment paletable.

-- Badtux the Numbers Penguin

Furry nose warmer

Sometimes happiness is a warm nose.

Sayyyy... have you noticed that Mencken and The Mighty Fang spend a lot of time sleeping on that futon? Of course, they spend 23 hours a day sleeping, so it's hardly a surprise that I catch them sleeping...

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Monday, November 17, 2008

Banana republic lynchings

One of the things that continually irritates me is the fact that we do so many lynchings here in the United States -- i.e., where we crucify someone without a trial via prosecutors using the press as their hangmen. Wen Ho Lee, Richard Jewell, and Dr. Steven Jay Hatfill are three prominent examples of people who had their lives ruined via these sorts of lynchings.

But even more poisonous is when these lynchings are used against people who have current active criminal charges against them. The usual way it works is that the prosecution attempts to poison the jury pool by releasing prejudicial information to their cronies in the press that person XYZ did evil deed ABC. The person they're lynching never has the opportunity to respond in the press because of the needs of the upcoming criminal trial -- the defense needs to keep their defense strategy under close wraps so that they can spring surprises on the prosecution in the actual criminal trial, so the accused has to either try his case in the press and lose his case in court, or lose his case in the press and maybe -- but with reduced certainty -- win his case at court.

The inevitable result is that there is no fair trial. The jury pool has been poisoned by the prosecution's leaks to the press, no matter how much they insist they haven't been (all that jury questioning accomplishes here is to find out who's more convincing liars), and is predisposed to find the accused guilty unless proven innocent, making a mockery of the "innocent until proven guilty" notion. Even in the case where it appears there is no question of guilt, the notion that the accused can get a fair trial after his name has been drug through mud by the press is ridiculous. It's nothing but a show trial, Soviet-style, and a travesty of justice.

It doesn't have to be this way. In Canada, for example, their constitution guarantees a fair trial to all accused, thus prohibits the press from talking about cases that have not yet been tried in the courts. But then, Canada is a democracy and has a system of justice, rather than an oligarchy with a system of show trials to meet the pro-forma requirements of the Constitution. Here, the right of the oligarchs to lynch a man in the press overrides the right of the accused to a fair trial. And that's how we like it.

-- Badtux the Justice Penguin

Brotherly love

Or at least it'd be brotherly love if Mencken and The Mighty Fang were actually brothers, which they aren't. And if Mencken cared whether TMF liked him or not. Which he doesn't. But Mencken doesn't seem to mind TMF deciding to snuggle up against him from time to time. Or maybe it's just that it'd take too much energy to run TMF off...

-- Badtux the Cat-blogging Penguin

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Uhm... excuse me?

From rational conservative John Cole at Balloon Juice, we learn that the American Family Association, the same "Christian" folks who attack President-elect Obama for, uhm, being President-elect Obama, come out with a new Christmas gift for their members. I'll give you three guesses as to what it is:

  1. A Nativity scene with a glowing star? Uhm, nope.
  2. A plaque with the birth scene from Matthew? Uhm, nope.
  3. A burning cross for your lawn? Uhm... you're darn tootin'!
You would think that someone at the AFA would look at the picture of the cross on their web site and say, "uhm, y'know, this just isn't appropriate right after a black President was elected." They might even figure out why (gasp) black people aren't buying this new gift. But then, that would require someone with brains to be working at the AFA, and brains kinda automatically disqualify you from being a batshit crazy "Christian" who thinks the Earth is 6,000 years old and shit like that...

Sigh. Sanity. It'd be nice, y'know?

-- Badtux the Sanity-challenged Penguin


Mencken tries to escape The Mighty Fang's awesome Pink Tongue Of Mass Grooming, but is not having much success... not that he's trying particularly hard. That would be too much work for a lazy Saturday afternoon.

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Thanksgiving week and run-up

Blogging will be light these next two weeks. But don't go away, I'm going to queue up a lot of cat pictures (one per day) for Blogger to post on the appropriate days ;-).

-- Badtux the Blogging Penguin

Caturday laundry blogging

Laundry Cat does his duly appointed task of making sure the dirty clothes have the appropriate amount of fur on them...

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Friday, November 14, 2008

Bigots dislike being targetted for their bigotry

Bigots who donated to Proposition H8 are upset that they're being targetted for boycotts. They whine, "we just wanted to support traditional marriage!" Yeah right. Let's get this straight: They targetted gays rather than straights because they're bigots. Otherwise they would have targeted divorce, not gay marriage, as the #1 enemy of "traditional marriage". Nobody is one less bit traditionally married if two guys get married or two gals get married. On the other hand, if they get divorced, they certainly aren't traditionally married anymore, right? So bigotry is the only reason to oppose gay marriage. The fact that bigotry is written into various religious scripts is irrelevant. It was bigotry when Southerners quoted the Bible to justify depriving blacks of fundamental human rights, and it is just as much bigotry when "Christians" quote the Bible to justify depriving gays of fundamental human rights.

So here's the deal: I have a right to not buy things from bigots, and to tell other people that someone is a bigot. That's my right too. This isn't "McCarthyism". This is just me being a citizen with rights, one of which is the right to not buy from bigots.

And if the bigots don't like it... well. Waahh! You want some cheese with that whine, bigots?

-- Badtux the Rude Penguin

I can has yer tax exemption?

Catholic priest refuses communion to Obama supporters.

Wonderful. Makes him sound like a 2 year old throwing a temper tantrum, stamping his feet and whining about how Obama is evil or some shit like that. So here's the deal: if he's going to involve himself in politics like that, why should his church be tax exempt? Same deal with the Mormons and their Prop 8 bullshit. If you're a political group, you don't qualify to be a non-profit. Sorry, but thems be the rules. I see no reason why the Mormons should be allowed to break the rules just because the Angel Moroni handed down magic underpants to their Profit 150 years or so ago. Same deal with the Catholics. Just because your religion predates Western civilization doesn't mean you should be allowed to disregard the laws of the nation you're operating in.

But wait, I forgot... IOIYR. It's OK If You're Republican. Or if you worship an invisible imaginary best friend. Alrighty, then!

-- Badtux the Tuxologist Penguin

I can has tummee rub?

The Mighty Fang was resting on his back in "tummy rub" position... So of course someone had to oblige him: -- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Friday Early Morning Music

Neko Case, "Furnace Room Lullaby". Hell if I know what genre this is. Gothic country? All I know is that Neko has some pipes on her...

-- Badtux the Music Penguin

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I guess that makes it official

Tighty righty wingnuts really are batshit crazy. Now they're trying to say that Obama's Selective Service registration is fake, just as they've been trying to say that Obama's birth certificate is a fake. Bizarre conspiracy theories seem to be all they got nowdays... that, and copulating like rabbits at an early age while condemning "liberals" as immoral, anyhow.

-- Badtux the Conspiracy Penguin

Reality television hits bottom

Just when you thought they couldn't go lower... Fox proves you wrong.

And proves that I'm a smart penguin for not owning a television, heh.

-- Badtux the Self-entertaining Penguin

Global warming is imaginary

Which is why there will likely be mandatory water rationing in the Silicon Valley next year.

Alrighty, then!

-- Badtux the Snarky Penguin

On invisible hands and the Big Three

So the notion is that the invisible hand of the marketplace will magically fix all things, and thus we should just allow the Big Three automakers to collapse.

Well, there's a number of problems with that notion. First of all, invisible hands, like invisible buddies that bums down at the waterfront talk to as they shuffle around in their bath slippers pushing their carts full of their life's possessions, are just that: Invisible. Imaginary. They don't exist. You might as well expect Casper the Friendly Ghost or Donald Duck to bail us out. So let's start talking about real things, rather than about imaginary friends that will save us all. Praying to your invisible hand will solve our problems about as soon as praying to Casper or to Allah or Jesus will.

Okay, now that we've dismissed invisible friends as our salvation, what now? The first thing to do is to prevent a deflationary spiral. The evaporation of so much wealth in the economy is inherently deflationary. The problem is, capitalism works only when there is a slight level of inflation to "prime the pump" so to speak. We found that out the hard way in 1930-1932, the Federal Reserve refused to expand the money supply because the prevailing ideology of the time said that'd cause runaway inflation a.k.a. Weimar Republic Meltdown, and the whole economy went into a deflationary meltdown as a result because in capitalism, people can't pay their bills during a deflationary period. Paulson dumping all that money into banks is the most effective way of preventing a deflationary spiral and I'm glad Bernanke finally talked him into doing it. Unfortunately, the amount dumped into the banks so far, about $120B, is child's play compared to the $4 *TRILLION* in housing wealth that has disappeared out of our economy. At current reserve requirements, he needs to dump another $280B into the banks to offset the disappearance of that $4 trillion.

Okay, on to the next issue. We're trying to prevent 1930-1932, remember? So what's the next thing that happened in 1930-1932 that we're trying to prevent? Well, that is a collapse in industrial production with resulting massive unemployment. And remember, in the U.S. system healthcare is tied to employment, so moving all those people off the employment rosters also results in a disastrous number of uninsured. GM alone provides health insurance to 1.1 *MILLION* people. If the Big Three automakers collapse, we're talking about the loss of roughly 2 million jobs and roughly 5 million more added to the rolls of those without health insurance.

Now: Just throwing money at the Big 3 isn't going to fix things. When Nissan was in this same situation in 1999, new management was a precondition of accepting the Japanese government bailout. We should probably insist on the same for GM if we bail them out (Chrysler already has new management -- they just kicked the Germans out, remember? -- and Ford will survive with loan guarantees and doesn't need a major bailout). But we can't just let them collapse. Two million unemployed people would send the unemployment rate soaring above 10%, and the current Medicaid system would collapse with 5 million more uninsured thrown into it.

In the long term, you are correct that the market will find jobs for those people and that the economy will recover. But in the long term, we're all dead. In the short term, we're trying to stay alive until we can make it to the long term. Call it socialism if you want. Me, I call it pragmatism. But economically speaking, bailing out the Big Three makes a lot more sense than relying on an invisible hand to bail us out. Because invisible hands are, in the end, imaginary, while the jobs and health insurance provided by the Big Three are real.

-- Badtux the Pragmatic Penguin

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Over at Moto-tux...

I ask, Should we save General Motors?

-- Badtux the Automotive Penguin

Why Louisiana voted for McCain

Typical Louisianians.

'Nuff said.

-- Badtux the Former-Louisianian Penguin

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Obama pals around with terrorist

And we have pictures to prove it:

-- Badtux the Snarky Penguin

France revisits its own racism after Obama win

Obama's victory has had reverberations overseas as European countries have had to think about their own racism in nations where nobody who is a racial minority could ever dream of ruling the country. For example, France has started re-thinking its own approach towards racial minorities.

In most of Europe, citizenship is determined by the same "one drop" rule that determines race here in the United States. Here in the United States, if you have "one drop" of black blood, you're considered black. In France and Germany and other such nations, you aren't considered French or German if you have "one drop" of non-French or non-German blood. In France, for example, live many refugees from Frances' colonial wars in Africa. They've been living in France since the collapse of France's colonial empire in the 1950's -- i.e., for close to 60 years now -- yet don't have French citizenship because they lack that oh-so-important "French blood".

The problem is that the number of people with "French blood" is shrinking. Unless France re-defines what it means to be a Frenchman, unless they turn being French into a nationality rather than an ethnicity, they are doomed because only bringing in talented immigrants is going to provide the manpower needed to keep their country going. And unless they grant full citizenship in actuality as well as name to those talented immigrants, they're in the same situation as the late-era Roman Empire, where the Germans who were the bulk of the Roman Legions were treated as second-class citizens... and eventually turned their swords upon the Empire and devoured it. So confronting their own racism is not just a moral imperative for Western Europe. It is a practical imperative also. So now we get to see whether Europe can throw off centuries of racism... or whether they die. We live in interesting times, don't we? -- Badtux the Race Penguin

How the economic crisis affects a mid-sized business

Ariens has to re-tool after Tecumseh quits shipping them engines.

Tecumseh has been in trouble for many years and now is shutting down. What that means for the folks who've designed their products around Tecumseh engines is trouble with a big T.

That's how these things ripple through an economy. For want of an engine, Ariens is likely next to be on the dead list. And given that we're a country that can't even make our own underwear anymore (try finding underwear made in America -- I dare you -- you can't find it), that means a lot of folks going commando in the next few years...

-- Badtux the Economics Penguin

This cat needs to take the advice...

on the box he's trying to go through:

He's too fat!

-- Badtux the Rotund Penguin

For smaller communities that want to glow in the dark...

The Hyperion Nuclear Power Generation Unit. This appears to be a small nuclear heat source that can be used to drive steam turbines. It uses a different fuel as compared to normal nuclear reactors so it's impossible for it to melt down, it self-damps (stops moderating neutrons, i.e., stops the reaction) when it gets above a certain temperature.

I've already noted that with oil and gas running out and the transition to a hydrogen infrastructure we're going to need not only a replacement for fuel oil and natural gas for home heating, but also a lot of energy to "crack" water into its hydrogen/oxygen components to use as fuel -- more energy than can be provided by wind and solar. There simply isn't enough energy density available in wind and solar to power a modern economy. Just ask Germany. They tried. They failed. Instead, Germany is now covered by a black cloud from coal-powered plants that are all that keeps Germany from sitting in the dark. Meanwhile, the skys are clear in France, where over 90% of their electricity comes from nuclear power. So for the near term, nuclear fission is "it" as an energy source for powering a modern economy. And as these small reactors prove, it *is* possible to create safe nuclear reactors.

The sad thing is that these new safe nuclear reactors are going to get installed in Eastern Europe long before they're installed here in America. The moron radical environmentalists would rather we all sit in the dark freezing, because sitting in the dark freezing is more "environmentally sound". Bah. Ideology wins over pragmatism once again. Environmentalism is yet another one of those "isms" like capitalism, socialism, and communism, all of which have some useful ideas, but when you turn them into an ideology what you get is poison.

-- Badtux the Nuclear Penguin

141mpg, anybody?

Okay, so it's a little bit ugly. But this Piaggio hybrid scooter supposedly gets 141mpg out of its 125cc engine plus electric motor hybrid setup -- or, if you're doing short distances, serves as a plug-in hybrid. Hmm, makes my Wee-strom's 50mpg look lame, but then I have to ride a three-wheeled scooter? Erk!

-- Badtux the Two-wheelin' Penguin

Help save our troops from bad coffee

The official state coffee of Louisiana, Community Coffee, has a "buy 4, get 4 free" offer for shipments to APO/FPO addresses.

Just say no to that nasty battery acid sh*t sold in cans... send some real coffee to your favorite troop today!

-- Badtux the Coffee Snob Penguin

Monday, November 10, 2008

Life after the election

I pity those who do not blog about economic news, who spent the last two years obsessing over politics to the exclusion of everything else. As reported by the world's finest news source, their life has become meaningless:
Obama Win Causes Obsessive Supporters To Realize How Empty Their Lives Are

-- Badtux the Easily-amused Penguin

How to do an economic stimulus plan

Okay, so here's the deal. Factory output plummeting? Unemployment going through the roof? What to do, what to do...

Well, that's simple: You do the stimulus plan that was just announced. You pour hundreds of billions of dollars into trains, planes, and subway construction and in other public works projects. You build hundreds of schools, thousands of miles of new highways, and employ millions of people building infrastructure. You build massive numbers of new affordable housing complexes, new hospitals, and new clinics. This is a stimulus plan that can, and will, work, employing people doing real things that add to the economy (as vs. just giving people money to sit on their asses) .

The only problem: It's being done by China, not by the United States. The Chinese government is spending the equivalent of 7% of their GDP to stimulate their economy, far more than any other country has attempted. Oops! Now I have to learn Mandarin if I want a job. Sigh!

-- Badtux the Snarky Penguin

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Life on the home front

The boys were both curled up together in my laundry basket (dirty clothes -- I don't leave laundry baskets full of clean clothes lying around because they get furred!). Two gigantic cats, one small laundry basket, it was one furry site. Alas, by the time I got my camera out The Mighty Fang had decided to get out and come greet me at the bedroom door. Oh well!

I bought a couple of Carl Hiassen's books at B&N today, I had a discount sticker and needed to use it. So I'll be entertaining myself with that.

Oh -- I did get my spare tire carrier properly spaced out today. Just a buncha stacked washers underneath the rubber bumpers, with a little piece of rubber inner tube between that and the door. Also used some premium grade 12.9 socket-head bolts to attach all this (the original bolts are not long enough with those washers). I also ordered a new pair of glasses to replace my scratched-up ones that are making me a bit bleary-eyed, and some bumper tie-ins for my Jeep so that my upcoming Thanksgiving trip doesn't pull my bumper off. So today wasn't a *total* lazy mess! Although I flinched at paying for the new glasses and the bumper tie-ins. They aren't expensive, but every bit counts in today's economy :-(.

-- Badtux the Sunday Penguin

Housing collapse continues

A first hand report has come in to my iceberg of someone who wants to buy a home, has a 20% downpayment, a good credit score, suitably large income, and... can't get a loan on the home he wants. It is, apparently, too far from the nearest fire hydrant and thus does not meet Fannie/Freddie or FHA requirements. And that's basically the only way you can get a home loan right now, because private home loan lending has basically ceased.

In some ways the current American situation looks a lot like the late Soviet Union. Oligarchs more interested in looting the treasury for their own benefit than in investing in the country's infrastructure, declining industrial output, crumbling highways and railroads and pipelines and refineries and electrical grid and pretty much everything else that makes a modern industrialized nation a modern industrialized nation... but that's what happens when a nation puts ideology ahead of practicality.

All these "isms" -- socialism, capitalism, communism -- are just so much nonsense, abstract drivel put together by people who are more interested in lofty ideas than in practicality. The only "ism" that has proven to work long-term is pragmatism. I.e., do what works. Don't do what doesn't work. So now we learn that deregulating financial markets doesn't work because traders look for their own short-term advantage rather than the long term welfare of the nation. Well duh. We found this out the hard way on October 29, 1929. But we as a nation came down with a bad case of the "isms" for the past thirty years or so and decided that hey, pragmatic reality wasn't the way to govern, some lofty unrealistic notion of "pure" capitalism was the way to govern. Well, that didn't work in 1929, and it *still* doesn't work today.

Regarding the bank bailouts, the basic problem we're running into there is that Paulson doesn't want to adhere to the Swedish Model. Sweden had the same housing crash / banking crash problem -- 15 years ago. They resolved it by nationalizing all the banks and installing government-appointed managers in all top offices, cleaning out the bad mortgages and actualizing the losses, auctioning all the properties that the banks had accumulated in order to end the blight on neighborhoods caused by vacant properties, and re-capitalizing the banks with freshly printed money from the Swedish treasury in exchange for the shares which they had nationalized. Once the banks were back up and operational and the real estate market had stabilized, Sweden then sold off its shares in the banks over the next ten years and now does not own any of its banks (other than the central bank), and indeed actually made a profit.

The problem is that this practical, pragmatic solution that the Swedes came up with conflicts with Paulson's "pure capitalism" ideology. Ideology is poison to practical governance. So Paulson is just handing out money to the banks, without sweeping in and taking them over and kicking out all the idiots who got the banks into this situation in the first place and straightening out the banks' books so that we know the true situation and can do what it takes to resolve the situation. It's a ridiculous situation and isn't doing a whole lot other than making a lot of investors very happy because the banks can now turn around and pay out dividends to those investors with Federal money. We're in a situation like the late Soviet Union, where the ideology has gotten so unrealistic and out of touch with reality that things are just falling apart and the apparatchniks refuse to consider any solution other than the ideologically correct one.

Maybe the new administration will take a more practical and pragmatic approach to the problems we're facing. That wouldn't take much doing, given how badly the current administration has performed at, well, just about everything. We'll just have to see. But my suspicion is that they'll get tangled in the "isms" too. What that means for the future... well. There is no longer a Soviet Union, y'know.

-- Badtux the Finance Penguin

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Gays attacking blacks over Prop H8

Various national human rights organizations have now come out saying, "stop with blaming blacks for the passage of Prop H8." Problem is, 70% of California's black population voted for Prop h8. SEVENTY PERCENT. And 53% of California's Hispanic population voted for Prop h8. If the Hispanics and blacks had voted the same way as whites, Prop h8 would have failed.

On the other hand, blaming the Hispanic and black communities for this is just plain stupid. There was no -- zero, zilch, nada -- attempt by California's gay community to reach out to these communities. In particular, there has been no -- zero, zilch, nada -- attempt by the mainstream California gay community, which is predominantly white middle class and well educated, to reach out to their fellow gays in the black and Hispanic communities and give them the support they need to "come out" of their closets. Being homosexual became accepted by white middle-class Americans only because their children started opening those closet doors and joining the ranks of "out" gays. That has not happened yet in the black and Hispanic communities to any large extent (yes I know about exceptions, one of them cuts my hair), and won't as long as the mainstream gay community here in California is terrified of black and Hispanic people -- which they are. Which is why there were no (ZERO) "No on 8" signs in Spanish. No (ZERO) "No on 8" advertising on Spanish-language television. No (ZERO) "No on 8" advertising on black radio. No (ZERO) door-knocking by the "No on 8" campaign in black or Hispanic neighborhoods. Until you remedy these issues, blacks and Hispanics will continue to vote against gay rights.

Until the predominantly white middle class gay community gets over its own bigotry against racial minorities and reaches out to its gay brethren in those communities, said gay community will continue to lack the blacks and Hispanics who could have gone into the black and Hispanic communities and shoved the Mormon's hate up their tight white asses. In short, if there's blame to be spread, it has to start with a gay community that has been less than supportive of its gay black and Hispanic brothers and sisters, blacks and Hispanics who have been left in the closet as gay rights moved into the mainstream in white America. When those blacks and Hispanics feel comfortable leaving their closet, when blacks and Hispanics realize that gays aren't "them" (white people) but are "us" (part of everybody's families), you have a chance of victory in a majority-minority state like California. But continue the path of racism and bigotry currently afflicting the gay community... well. 'Nuff said there. Ya reap what ya sow, know what I mean?

- Badtux the Pragmatic Penguin

Caturday evening tired kitteh blogging

I'm not sure why they're tired, all they did most of the day was take turns on my lap, but here they are taking up half my futon... BTW, Mencken isn't really that big. He's just fluffy. Like I said, he's six pounds lighter than The Mighty Fang (or should I say, the mighty lump of flying blubber, given his propensity for bold leaps to the tops of bookcases and such?).

My day was generally taken up with running errands. I found out that even in the middle of a credit crisis American Express was happy to add me as a member with a big credit line (I got tired of writing checks at Costco and all they take is their AmEx), I bought some more stuff at Costco (a buncha Kleenexes, some laundry detergent, and some dishwasher detergent -- I'm now going to have clean clothes and dishes for the next five years, heh!), and I bought a buncha washers and shit at Orchard Supply to space out the spare tire bumpers on the back of my Jeep so they actually touch the spare tire to keep it from wobbling and pulling out the bolts holding the spare mount to the tailgate (because my black steel wheels have less backspacing than the originals, meaning that they're further out towards the outside). Unfortunately it started raining then, so I didn't get to actually install them... I'm going to use pieces of old inner tube (from my motorcycle) as gaskets between the washers and the body of my tailgate to keep the paint from rubbing through but I wasn't doing anything in the rain. Huh, a penguin afraid of the rain, what a wuss, huh? Maybe my cats are rubbing off on me there :-).

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

A problem

The Mighty Fang is sitting on my lap purring.

I need to run some errands -- get a haircut, get a new photo made for a membership card, go get some spacers for fixing the tire mount on my Jeep, other things of that sort.

What to do, what to do... how can I disturb this soft furry sweetness purring on my lap? but I have things to do! Agh!

-- Badtux the Conflicted Penguin

Postscript: Mencken decided TMF was having too much fun, and came over and ran him off my lap. TMF outweighs Mencken by six pounds, but Mencken has the edge when it comes to meanness big time... Oh well, at least I can go run my errands now!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Cat puke sucks

I vacuumed the living room tonight, and got tired of seeing all those cat puke stains all over it. So of course I got the "White Lightning" degreaser out and rubbed it into the cat puke stains, and got out the carpet shampoo machine (the Hoover Steamvac) and started a'shampooing.

Casualties: One finger literally scrubbed raw working the degreaser into the stains (now has Band-aid on it). Much time and aggravation (the Steamvac has a tiny tank, I went through four tanks of water and a tank of carpet soap on the part that the cats had puked on, the part not protected by the throw rugs, because you have to go over each section multiple times with soap then rinsing it without soap otherwise the soap left behind attracts more dirt). Much dirt down the kitchen drain. But at least now the carpet in the living rooms looks merely worn out, rather than utterly disgusting ;-(.

The apartment complex I live in gave me a certificate when I moved in that says they'll put new carpet in after I've lived here 5 years. Next year will be 5 years. It'll be interesting to see whether they tell me "oops, we're not renewing your lease!" next year in order to charge me for the new carpet to replace the worn-out old carpet (this is the original carpet from when the apartment was built 12 years ago, from what I can tell).

-- Badtux the Tired Penguin

Chuck Norris, financial advisor

The IMF says that the world's entire economy is going to slump in 2009, the first time that has happened since WWII. It now predicts that the US economy will shrink by 0.7 per cent next year. And while the tighty righties are gearing up to blame this all on Obama (just as they blame the Bush Recession on, well, Bill Clinton!), the question is, what is a tighty righty supposed to do about all of this?

Well, never fear. World Nut Daily has the answer. They've contracted the very famous financial advisor Chuck Norris to tell their subscribers what to do in order to last out this slump! To quote from their EMAIL announcing this unprecedented event:

"America's founders' financial," by Chuck Norris, featuring five basic principles of fiscal management on which the U.S. was founded

"The soundest understanding of money, the highest principles of commerce and the profoundest insight into human nature – it's all found in the Bible, which actually has a lot to say on the subject of wealth: how to get it, how to protect it and what to do with it."

Note: All mis-spellings were in the original ;-).

Yessiree, everything you need to know about how to survive the financial slump comes from the writings of... err... shepherds. As in, guys who raise sheep. As interpreted by an economist? No! As interpreted by a movie star with no training in economics!

Gah, the stupidity! It burns! It burns!

-- Badtux the Amused-by-wingnuts Penguin

Comedians try to cope with Obama win

"A dignified African-American man running the country? What the hell can I do with that?! My only hope is Biden. I think my way in might be Biden. I think Biden might be a little bit crazy. ... Last night at the victory speech they wheeled him out like Hannibal Lector in The Silence of the Lambs. ... I'm hoping that once he becomes the VP, his full craziness will show. Then I'll have something to work with. " Comedian Craig Ferguson tries to figure out what he's going to do without Republicans to make fun of ;-).

-- Badtux the Amused Penguin

What's with all this anti-Palin stuff from the McCain camp?

After all, McCain chose her. He has nobody to blame but himself, right? So why blame her for his loss? Or at least, that would be the reasoning if this really was a case of Republican finger-pointing. It's not. What it is, is the first volley in the 2012 Republican nomination campaign.

The last thing that the Republican orthodoxy wants to see is Sarah Palin as their nominee in 2012. It would fire up their cretinous mouth breathing KKK-worshiping "base" big-time, but be absolute disaster for their electoral chances, since your average American is repelled by that sort of ugliness.

So all this is them trying to destroy Palin now, so they won't have to destroy Palin in 2012. Which is why we should all be encouraging Palin to run for the Presidency in 2012 ;-).

- Badtux the Evil Penguin

My idiot cat

As some of you probably remember, The Mighty Fang has properly trained his penguin to water him upon demand. Said watering done via the bathroom faucet.

Only problem is, TMF isn't exactly the brightest kitteh around: Yes, that's water cascading off of his chubbeh little cheek.

Here's how it works. TMF puts his head under the faucet and eyes the faucet hopefully. Being a helpful penguin, I turn the water on for a dribble. The water hits his chubby little cheek and splashes off to the side a bit. TMF moves his head to catch the water as it spurts off to the side off his cheek, therefore causing the water to hit even further up his cheek and cascade further to the side. Until finally the water is just running off his cheek directly into his mouth and he laps it up.

The strange thing is that his fur is so sleek and shiny that the water just shakes right off his cheek once he has drunk his fill. Here he is approximately three minutes after the first photo:

Yes, TMF, I'm talkin' about you!

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Random geekiness

AT&T and Apple supposedly are in negotiations to bring tethering to the iPhone.

Currently I have a Palm 700p on Sprint. The Palm OS is crusty and doesn't allow using the USB device to tether with my Macbook, but it does good enough to check email and interact with my teams when I'm on the road. It doesn't do WiFi, but my laptop does, so no big deal there. Thing is, Sprint has now imposed a 3gb per month limit, so that pretty much eliminated any reason to prefer Sprint's 3G to anybody else's 3G (well, other than the fact that they have a better build-out than their competitors, but that's another issue). And the Palm OS is just plain crusty, this thing hasn't been enhanced with anything new for ten years now and is woefully obsolete.

Of course, the Palm OS is also the only handheld OS that allows one-handed operation. I've tried Windows Mobile 5+ and nope, it requires two-handed operation, which is a bummer when you're sitting in the restroom wiping your bum while trying to find out what the news of the world is on your handheld's web browser. With Palm OS, you just hit the 'menu' button, use the rocker to move down to 'Bookmarks' and hit the center rocker button, and voila. Choose the pre-programmed news site you're interested in. You can flip through the list of available programs by just hitting the 'home' button repeatedly, and once you have the page you're interested in, use the rocker and the center button.

The problem is that Palm's built-in web browser doesn't work very well, and the OS is too limited for any other web browser to really work. Whereas the iPhone has Safari in it. Which isn't the world's best browser, but which is quite usable (it's what I'm using to type this message, due to the fact that, unlike Firefox, it doesn't have memory leaks out the wazoo and never freezes up). So if I could tether an iPhone as well as get my address book and TODO lists and etc. out of the Palm into the iPhone, it'd look a lot more like an alternative to me. So anywho... I'll have to see what happens there. Geekery never ends, apparently!

-- Badtux the Geeky Penguin

Hard work ahead

In the end, every member of the liberal coalition except one came out and voted against Prop h8, which took away the right of gays to marry in California. And that was: black people. Yes, black people, past victims of "seperate but equal" laws. It was heavy turnout in the black community for the election of Barack Obama that passed Prop h8 in California, that legalizes "seperate but equal" for gays regarding marriage rights. I was looking at the turnout and votes for various heavily-black precincts in Los Angeles on the night of the election as they were reported, and on average *70%* of blacks voted for Prop h8. Everybody in the black community “knows” that the worst thing you can be is “gay”. Thus the promiscuous behavior amongst black men to “prove” their “manliness”. In addition, the black community in general buys the silliness that the tighty righties dish out about how gay people are gay by choice, not by genes. The gay kids I grew up with in antediluvian time certainly did not choose to be ostracized, pantsed, and all the other torments that gay kids got from their peers in our schools in those days, but according to the tighty righties they *chose* to be tormented. What utter nonsense.

But that is all remediable by education. Which did not happen. The gay community has made no (zero) attempt to make itself known to the black and Hispanic communities. There was no (zero) door-knocking in black and Hispanic communities. No (zero) attempts to talk to prominent black ministers to get their support. No "No on 8" signs printed in Spanish or Vietnamese (another major minority group in California). There was no (zero) "No on 8" advertising on black radio, on Spanish-language television, on Vietnamese-language radio. The only people the No on 8 folks went after were white college-educated middle class people, leaving everybody else fertile ground for the hate groups to go after. When an unprecedented number of African Americans turned out to vote for Obama, and 70% of these African Americans voted for Prop h8, that was the end of the game right there.

Granted, the timing was not in No on 8's favor, it was dictated by the Prop 8 people. But you do not always get to choose your battleground. Statistics show that the gay community is wealthier and better educated than the community at large. They ought to be able to put together a better political campaign than a bunch of ignorant hillbillies from Utah even if at a disadvantage in terms of not being able to choose the time and place for their battle. But this was just an abysmal showing by the gay community and the civil rights community as a whole, entire major voting populations of California had not even the slightest attempt made to reach them, with predictable results.

This is not Ronald Reagan's America. This is modern multi-cultural America. You cannot win if all you go after is white middle-class people. It just doesn't work that way. The gay community and civil rights community needs to learn this and learn it hard, or they will continue to get their rears handed to them in these kinds of campaigns.

– Badtux the Numbers Penguin

Thursday night Youtubery

A couple of young ladies from Canada...

-- Badtux the Music Penguin

Unemployment at 25 year high

481,000 people lost their jobs last month. 3,843,000 officially unemployed. The official unemployment rate is 6.1%. The *unofficial* unemployment rate -- the U-6 measure -- is at 11%.

Getting Americans back working again is going to be job #1 for an Obama administration. We will have to see how he handles this. One thing is clear, the old rubric of "retraining" is not going to work this time. The new computer jobs are going to programmers in India and China, not to programmers here in the United States, so even if all these unemployed people could be re-trained to have computer skills (which many of them can't -- it takes a certain mindset that can't be easily taught), they aren't going to be working in the computer industry. And re-training them to be "sandwich artists" would be just a cruel joke.

-- Badtux the Economics Penguin

Thursday morning black cat blogging

Black cats blend in with the night very well. Even the fat ones like The Mighty Fang.

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Best election coverage blog post

Is the Rude One's comment about CNN's elections coverage. The punch line summary: "This ain't news. It's Blitzer in the sky with diamonds."

Bwhahaha! Almost makes me want to go out and buy a television, heh!

-- Badtux the TV-less Penguin

The beginning of the beginning

In the end, Barack Obama became President of the United States by telling us what we wanted to hear. It was a nice and noble vision that he presented to us, but there is a problem: We are not the nation that we were 28 years ago. We have grown too attached to people telling us we can have something for nothing, that the cheap goods from Wal-Mart have no price other than a few pictures of dead Presidents, we have consumed and consumed and consumed and in the meantime our manufacturing sector has been gutted, the average wage of a wage-earner has gone down for every year since 1973 and the only reason average household income has not gone down is because more people in the household are working and for longer hours, our health system has collapsed, we have become a nation of nervous nellies too frightened to take the reins of our own fate in our hands...

Obama takes over with a nation that is in denial, a nation that is no longer the great nation that it was 28 years ago, that produces nothing, that invents little, that has outsourced everything to people overseas and left nothing for its own people but selling real estate to one another when not selling cars to one another and being sandwich artists for those who are selling real estate to one another and selling cars to one another and now that both the real estate and automobile industry are in the dumps... now what? All we have left are high-tech military toys, but eight years of Bush regime overseas adventurism have destroyed most of our inventory of ground weapons and we no longer have the ability to make new ones. We can no longer make a tank here in the United States of America. We have no ability to make the turbine engines that drive tanks. We have no ability to rebuild our ability to make those turbine engines. We have destroyed our nation, all of us, with our short-sighted notion that we could ignore the common good, that we could ignore the health and welfare of the nation, that we could get tax cut after tax cut until 40% of American households aren't even paying taxes anymore, and yet still have all the benefits of good government. We bought the belief that we could have a free lunch, that we could have good government without paying for it, and now we are fucked.

And we're still in denial. Obama could not have won if he had not lied and told us that we could get even more tax cuts. If he had told us the truth -- that we have driven away the expertise needed to operate critical government functions like the Centers for Disease Control, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, FEMA, etc. with short-sighted wage and benefits cuts for government workers, that the nation is bankrupt because we no longer collect enough taxes to pay for even the basic security functions of our government -- he would have had no more chance of getting elected than Dead Gus Hall.

The question that will tell us whether Obama will be a great President, or merely another triangulating waffler like Bill Clinton, will be whether Obama is able to break the truth to us, and break it to us in such a way that we do not immediately storm the White House and tar and feather him and throw his burned body into the Potomac. I think he has the tools to be a great President. But unless he has the courage to tell us the truth, and the skill to use that truth to get us to help rebuild our nation rather than continue our addiction to cheap Chinese crap and free lunches, all that Obama is going to be is a place holder. And whether the nation can survive a place holder when all the buzzards are circling overhead over the carcass of this once great nation... well. We shall see, I suppose.

-- Badtux the Realist Penguin


Cool! This is a blogging tool for the Macbook that, amongst other things, allows easy cross-posting. All I do is double-click on a post to pull it back up in the Qumana editor, change the blog I'm posting it to, and voila! It also lets me compose posts offline and then go online once I'm ready to post. See the footer of this message for a link to this free tool if you're interested in getting it for your own Mac...

-- Badtux the Blogging Penguin

Powered by Qumana

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


The American Dream lives. May this be a new beginning for our nation...

-- Badtux the Waiting Penguin

No on hate. No on 8.

Reminder: If you're in California, don't stop at voting for Obama. Make sure you go down and vote no on bigotry and hate too. Vote 'No' on Proposition 8, which would take away the right of Californians to marry whatever consenting adult they wish to marry.

I drove by some Mormons who were demonstrating for Prop 8 on Saturday. You can always tell Mormons because they always have that cleancut look and are the whitest most tight-assed honkeys you ever seen. Must be that magic underwear they gotta wear as part of their faith or something. I already voted 'no' on 8, so I did the only thing that was possible and reasonable for me to do: I gave'em the uplifted middle finger. One of the teenagers grinned and let out a Confederate "Yee-haw!" yell. Guess they don't teach them Mormon kids what the uplifted middle finger means, heh!

-- Badtux the Voting Penguin

Waiting for the results...

I like pie.

-- Badtux the Fingernail-biting Penguin

Monday, November 03, 2008

Floods and idiots

At the mouth of the Colorado River is a mass of sediments. These sediments are in layers, one layer for each spring flood that swept down the Grand Canyon and out the mouth of the river. These layers are like the rings of a tree, one for each year that the Colorado River has been flowing into the Gulf of California. You can drill down into this sediment with a coring drill and pull up core samples and count the layers. There are approximately five million of these layers, meaning that the Grand Canyon is at least five million years old.

Unless... unless you're one of the "young earth" creationists. Then these layers were created WHAM! 6011 years ago last Monday. Now, why God would create layers that say that the Earth is at least five million years old, the "young earth" creationists won't say, or they'll mumble some pious bullshit about "the Lord works in mysterious ways" which basically is the same thing as sticking their fingers in their ears and shouting "I can't hear you! I can't hear you!" Because if God created these layers 6011 years ago, these layers that are identical to the spring flood layers that we can count for the 6010 years afterwards, it means that God deliberately is deceiving us. I.e., that God is a liar. And that's not quite what these folks want to say, but it's what they're saying anyhow.

So anyhow, here's the deal. You can believe your lying eyes. Or you can believe the natterings of idiots who say that God is a liar. Me, I'll choose what I can see for myself over the natterings of some fool who hasn't a clue and is trying to cover up his cluelessness with hand waving and bullshit, thank you very much.

-- Badtux the Old Earth Penguin

A real church...

does not beat up protesters. Only cult goon squads do that sort of thing.

'Nuff said.

-- Badtux the Non-cultish Penguin

Land of the free, indeed

Eight men who have been imprisoned for seven years without being convicted or even charged with any crime may be held forever anyhow, the U.S. government claims.

Yessiree. More of that whole "land of the free" crap indeed. For some definition of "free". Probably along the line of "free lunch", at least for our porcine elite who've sucked up 80% of the wealth of America into their greedy little hands...

-- Badtux the Freedom-loving Penguin

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Sunday evening music

Some Slovenian industrial metal just right for Halloween (especially if you are Lou Dobbs or Duncan Hunter or Tom Tancredo, substitute "south" for "east") and election week:

-- Badtux the Music Penguin

Sunday afternoon cat follies

Mencken and The Mighty Fang are curled up on the futon together, with TMF's nose nuzzled up under Mencken's chin. When I walked in a few minutes ago, TMF was attacking Mencken with his mighty Tongue of Mass Grooming, holding Mencken's head down with his paw while giving Mencken's ear a good wash job. Mencken looked annoyed, but not annoyed enough to do anything about it.

Just another exciting Sunday afternoon on this penguin's iceberg...

-- Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin

This penguin wants a bigger...

...hard drive.

What, you thought I was going to say penis? Whatdya think I am, a Republican like Rush Limpdick?!

Anywho, here's the three hard drives I'm looking at for my Macbook to bring it up to an awesome 500 gigabytes -- or what I have available on my Linux server (!!!):

  • So the question is whether I go for the known reliability of the Western Digital, or for the lower price of the Samsung. Hmm...

    -- Badtux the Geeky Penguin

  • Sleepy Sunday morning

    Ah yes, 'fall back', end of DST. Do you know how many clocks I have to adjust? Here we go...

    1. Living Room
    2. Dining Room
    3. Stove
    4. Microwave
    5. Watch
    6. Bedroom
    7. Nightstand
    8. Travel
    9. Jeep
    10. V-Strom
    Time is a drag....

    Meanwhile, the sun is out, and the boys are sunning themselves at the patio door, totally ignoring their penguin servant. So I guess I'll head out to Subway and get a sandwich and some caffeine. Oh yeah, my head quit feeling like a balloon last night at around 2am, at which point I could finally get to sleep. Oh well, hopefully it stays feeling okay today.

    -- Badtux the Live Penguin

    Saturday, November 01, 2008


    The problem with pain is that it makes your head crazy and incoherent until you can't even write a decent blog post. I'm waiting for some ibuprofens and antihistamine to take effect to deal with a nasty sinus headache. I wrote a new bluesy song last night that I wanted to finish recording, I need to fix some vocals where I flubbed the lyrics and add some harmonica where it needs it, but that's completely out of the question right now.

    I will go read another book, luckily I made a library run today...

    -- Badtux the Head-exploded Penguin

    The choice

    Rep. Boehner (R-Batshitcrazy) called Obama a "chickenshit" yesterday. How mature of him. We have two men running for President right now. One man lays out a vision for the future of America. The other man says the first man has cooties.

    -- Badtux the Snarky Penguin

    Quote of the day

    "Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company." -- Mark Twain

    -- Badtux the Quoteth Penguin