Wednesday, April 29, 2009
The “extremists” among you openly call for the death of 1 to 6.4 billion human beings. The “moderates” among you openly call for the forced reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of 90 percent within a few decades, which would serve to reduce energy use almost to the same extent. Such a severe reduction in energy use follows from the fact that there are no presently existing large-scale viable alternatives to fossil fuels other than atomic power, which is regarded by most members of your movement as a death ray and is opposed more vehemently than fossil fuels. Furthermore, the likelihood of ever finding and developing such alternatives will be greatly reduced by destroying the energy sources we do have and need to increase. So what your movement advocates is mass death or, at the very least, dreadful mass impoverishment whose outcome will be tens or hundreds of millions of unnecessary deaths and a life of misery for those who survive.
If your motivation in calling yourself an environmentalist is merely such things as that you like to see flowers bloom on open meadows, and love trees, whales, and polar bears, and the like, then you owe it to yourself to put as much intellectual and moral distance as possible between you and those who advocate mass impoverishment and mass death.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
In 1986 your humble correspondent happened to be aboard his sloop anchored in the harbor of Charlotte Amalie in the US Virgin Island of St Thomas when a Dutch submarine docked and the crew mustered on deck for shore leave. As a former member of the US Army I was appalled at the appearance of the crew which resembled nothing so much as the enkempt denizens on the streets of Nancy Pelosi's congressional district of Haight Ashbury in San Francisco. These sailors proceeded to disembark to enjoy shore liberty. I learned from a cruising colleague of Canadian citizenship and Dutch descent that the members of the Dutch military are all unionized (do they vote on whether to defend the Netherlands from attack?).
I therefore was able to put the following news item in perspective:
In the above photo taken Saturday, April 18, 2009, released by Dutch defense ministry on April 21, 2009, Dutch marines board a fishing boat in the Gulf of Aden and free two dozen Yemenis from the clutches of nine pirates. They seized and destroyed AK-47 assault rifles and a rocket launcher but then put the pirates back in their skiff and set them free. (AP Photo/ Defense Ministry Netherlands/) (AP / April 18, 2009)
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Subject: AH, now it comes out
Having spoken to some SEAL pals here in Virginia Beach yesterday and asking why this thing dragged out for 4 days, I got the following:
1. BHO wouldn't authorize the DEVGRU/NSWC SEAL teams to the scene for 36 hours going against OSC (on scene commander) recommendation.
2. Once they arrived, BHO imposed restrictions on their ROE that they couldn't do anything unless the hostage's life was in "imminent" danger
3. The first time the hostage jumped, the SEALS had the raggies all sighted in, but could not fire due to ROE restriction
4. When the navy RIB came under fire as it approached with supplies, no fire was returned due to ROE restrictions. As the raggies were shooting at the RIB, they were exposed and the SEALS had them all dialed in.
5. BHO specifically denied two rescue plans developed by the Bainbridge CPN and SEAL teams
6. Bainbridge CPN and SEAL team CDR finally decide they have the OpArea and OSC authority to solely determine risk to hostage. 4 hours later, 3 dead raggies
7. BHO immediately claims credit for his "daring and decisive" behaviour. As usual with him, it's BS.
So per our last email thread, I'm downgrading Oohbaby's performace to D-. Only reason it's not an F is that the hostage survived.
Read the following accurate account.
Philips’ first leap into the warm, dark water of the Indian Ocean hadn’t worked out as well. With the
Bainbridge in range and a rescue by his country’s Navy possible, Philips threw himself off of his
lifeboat prison, enabling Navy shooters onboard the destroyer a clear shot at his captors — and none
The guidance from National Command Authority — the president of the United States,
Barack Obama — had been clear: a peaceful solution was the only acceptable outcome to this standoff
unless the hostage’s life was in clear, extreme danger.
The next day, a small Navy boat approaching the floating raft was fired on by the Somali pirates — and
again no fire was returned and no pirates killed. This was again due to the cautious stance assumed by
Navy personnel thanks to the combination of a lack of clear guidance from Washington and a mandate
from the commander in chief’s staff not to act until Obama, a man with no background of dealing with
such issues and no track record of decisiveness, decided that any outcome other than a “peaceful
solution” would be acceptable.
After taking fire from the Somali kidnappers again Saturday night, the onscenecommander decided
he’d had enough.
Keeping his authority to act in the case of a clear and present danger to the hostage’s
life and having heard nothing from Washington since yet another request to mount a rescue operation
had been denied the day before, the Navy officer — unnamed in all media reports to date — decided
the AK47 one captor had leveled at Philips’ back was a threat to the hostage’s life and ordered the
NSWC team to take their shots.
Three rounds downrange later, all three brigands became enemy KIA and Philips was safe.
There is upside, downside, and spinside to the series of events over the last week that culminated in
yesterday’s dramatic rescue of an American hostage.
Almost immediately following word of the rescue, the Obama administration and its supporters claimed
victory against pirates in the Indian Ocean and  declared that the dramatic end to the standoff put
paid to questions of the inexperienced president’s toughness and decisiveness.
Despite the Obama administration’s (and its sycophants’) attempt to spin yesterday’s success as a result
of bold, decisive leadership by the inexperienced president, the reality is nothing of the sort.
What should have been a standoff lasting only hours — as long as it took the USS Bainbridge and its
team of NSWC operators to steam to the location — became an embarrassing four day and counting
standoff between a ragtag handful of criminals with rifles and a U.S. Navy warship.
Hat tip: John Ray
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Interviews with actual pirates affirm that their motives are however strictly pecuniary. Also, when viewing the Canadian produced video linked above, bear in mind that due to ocean current patterns in the Indian Ocean, any piece of flotsam finding its way into the sea in any area west of Sumatra has a good chance of finding its way onto the beaches of East Africa including Puntland and Southern Somalia.
Such logic is however unlikely to intrude on the fantasy world of the latter day leftists and racists whose object is to condemn any and all activities associated with Western culture.
Monday, April 13, 2009
As is often the case, political considerations generally outweigh logic or reason in addressing what would ordinarily appear as simple and straightforward problems in the real world. As an example, the idea never occurs to our rulers when faced with criminal behavior to preclude the need for cost ineffective responses to criminal behavior by nipping the problem in the bud.
A case in point would be the recent resurgence of piracy in the Gulf of Aden and the Somali coast of the Indian Ocean. The coastal population of Somalia which at present has no effective government whose writ extends beyond the city limits of Mogadishu has discovered the lucre available to adventurous and enterprising gentlemen in small craft willing to invest in automatic small arms and readily available rocket propelled grenade launchers for the purpose of wreaking havoc on the unarmed merchant fleets of the world by seizing and holding for ransom peaceful merchant vessels and their crews.
The policy heretofore utilized by the shippers has been to pay the demanded ransoms to obtain the release of the vessels and personnel apparently ignoring the logic that any behavior which is rewarded will tend to increase exponentially. These decisions are also influenced by the political policies of various nations who prohibit the entrance of commercial vessels into their harbors vessels which have defensive weaponry on board. This situation is reenforced by insuring companies which will not insure vessels which sail with defensive armament.
As we have witnessed the increase in piracy recently due to the easy lucre engendered by the above mentioned policies, a re evaluation of such policies is obviously appropriate. Presently, elements of a dozen navies are engaged in the suppression of piracy in the western Indian ocean at considerable expense of treasure in a world economy suffering from the evaporation of over 50 trillion dollars of wealth over recent history.
Your humble writer is thus prepared to place before your consideration a proposal which he posits will address the problem in a cost effective and expeditious manner.
Every vessel entering the Gulf of Aden and the western Indian Ocean shall be equipped with the following: one 20mm chain gun with adequate ammunition on the highest point of the superstructure. This weapon to be serviced by one squad (9 persons) of trained private security personnel armed with appropriate small arms. The 9 man squad is adequate to provide 24-7 duty for the weapon system. All craft constituting a security threat to the vessel will be dealt with by the appropriate measures and no rescue operations will be initiated for surviving attackers.
You, dear readers are left with the necessary computation of the costs of these measures as opposed to the existing policy of deploying naval battle groups of a dozen nations and providing monetary rewards to these enterprising bandits.
Sunday, April 05, 2009
Friday, April third was the day that the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) announced the modification of its rules for assessing the value of assets held as collateral by financial institutions. Wall Street reacted to the good news by continuing its rally.
Here's the way it works: With the slump in real estate sales at inflated bubble prices, the sellers were forced to accept lower offers in order to move these "assets". In many cases the properties could not be sold for prices at or above the balances owed on them to the banks. The situation resulted in borrowers owing more on their mortgages than they could sell their homes for. As a result properties recently "valued" at $500,000.00 are now worth $300,000.00 and falling daily. Banks that had loaned $495,000.00+ on such properties were forced under the old rules (mark to market) to assign the true market value on their balance sheets causing them to be insolvent.
Under the new rules (issued two days subsequent to All Fools Day) the banks will be allowed to carry these mortgages on their balance sheets at their original (inflated) values and voilá, the problems are solved due to political pressure.
It is important to note that the Financial Accounting Standards Board made their rule modifications only after intense pressure had been applied by Washington and Wall Street....The banks and the government have argued that the assets should be valued based solely on current cash flow. Most mortgages, after all, are not delinquent. Therefore, a few bad apples should not spoil the whole cart, and those that are not yet delinquent should be valued at par. This method assumes we have no ability to look into the future and make assumptions about what is likely to happen, which is presumably what the market is already doing by valuing the assets lower than the banks wish.Pay no attention to the fact that foreclosures are accelerating exponentially and the foreclosed properties are only being liquidated at "fire sale" prices with the slack being taken up with freshly printed and borrowed bailout money.
The Marxist Messiah and his Keynesian economic advisors continue to kick the day of reckoning down the road for our grandchildren to pay for while assuring us the we can borrow, print and spend our way out of this debt crisis by creating trillions of dollars out of thin air and borrowing the rest from the Chinese.
Welcome to Zimbabwe lite.
The above pictured banknote as of this posting is roughly equivalent to 10 grams of gold.