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Monthly Archives: May 2012

Fill it to the RIM — with Fail

May 31st, 2012 - 3:12 pm

BlackBerry phones might have as much as two or three years of life left before RIM calls it quits — two or three very ugly years.

Virginia [HEARTS] Maryland

May 31st, 2012 - 3:00 pm

Virginia isn’t just for lovers. It’s for people who love money:

Maryland accounted for the largest taxpayer exodus of any state in the region between 2007 and 2010, with a net migration resulting in 31,000 residents having left the state. Where did most of them go? Virginia. Virginia is now home to nearly 11,500 former Marylanders—a shift of $390 million from the tax rolls of one state to another, according to the non-partisan Tax Foundation.

If there’s a broader lesson in this, I’m sure your typical progressive couldn’t find it with both hands.

Signs “O” the Times

May 31st, 2012 - 10:19 am

Here’s the welcome that David Axelrod received in Massachusetts earlier today.

This, of course, is the same David Axelrod who complained today that while Mitt Romney was governor, MA debt went up 16%.

16%? We should be so lucky.

What Scott Walker is Fighting Against

May 31st, 2012 - 8:10 am

Trifecta: The state of the unions — what those public service unions have gotten into while you weren’t looking.

Hugo Chavez Dying to Win Reelection

May 31st, 2012 - 5:52 am

REPORT: Chavez not expected to live “more than a couple of months at most.”

The telling detail came as an addendum to the story:

Reporter’s note: There is only one source for identifying the cancer and for the prognosis quoted in the first part of the above story. This is a person whom your reporter has very good reason to trust, but you should know that there is only one source so far; no other immediate confirmation. All sources asked for and were granted anonymity because to reveal their names could place them in danger or, at the very least cost them their positions.

Remember that any time some vile prog tries to tell you about Chavez’s lovely and democratic revolution.

The Zen Art of Obfuscation

May 30th, 2012 - 5:02 pm

I’ll watch the video later tonight, but EW has the non-details on Apple CEO Tim Cook’s talk at D10:

Apple CEO Tim Cook sat down for an interview at the All Things Digital conference yesterday. Without saying anything specific, he spent his 40 minutes onstage responding to pointed questions with detailed-yet-abstract answers, giving the impression that Apple as a company was in a quantum phase of working on everything and nothing at the same time. After noting his excitement for “all the things I cannot talk about today,” he promised the crowd: “The juices are flowing, and we have some incredible things coming out.”

When Steve Jobs left, Cook was the learner. Now, he is the master.

Tell Me Something I Don’t Know

May 30th, 2012 - 3:49 pm

BREAKING: Google thinks you’re an idiot.

As the father of a six-year-old, I’m used to that.

Sign “O” the Times

May 30th, 2012 - 1:36 pm

I never tire of these party-switching stories:

Former Alabama congressman Artur Davis, who seconded Barack Obama’s nomination for president four years ago, says he’s leaving the Democratic Party.

The one-time rising Democratic Party star — once described as “the Obama of Alabama” — said on his website that he is switching his voter registration to Virginia and is considering running for office as a Republican. Davis was also critical of the Obama administration, with whom he was sometimes at odds while in Congress on issues such as health care.

“This is not Bill Clinton’s Democratic Party (and he knows that even if he can’t say it),” Davis wrote.

Because of racism. Or something.

I Apologize Twice in Advance

May 30th, 2012 - 1:31 pm

Nobody saw this one coming:

The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum field is the place where the USC Trojans play football, two Summer Olympics were staged, John F. Kennedy accepted the Democratic presidential nomination and Pope John Paul II celebrated Mass.

It was also a location for “The Gangbang Girl #32,” a hard-core pornographic movie that featured 40 minutes of group sex on the gridiron turf, The Times has learned.

The filming at the taxpayer-owned stadium was done at night, with the Coliseum’s towering lights blazing and its rows of distinctive red and white seats framing many of the scenes. The video also shows the stadium’s signature tunnel, which the Trojan team charges through at the start of games, as well as a sliver of the iconic peristyle, the arched entrance to the Coliseum.

“I was just in awe that we were at the Coliseum,” said a star of the film, who goes by the name Mr. Marcus. “I’ve made movies for about 20 years and I’ve done a lot of things, but that one really stands out.… I mean, who gets to have sex on the Coliseum floor?”

Apparently, the production company got permission somehow. L.A. must be hard up for the money.

My GM insider reported back in this morning with some goodies about Warren Buffett, GM’s tanking shares, and the November election.

News broke 10 days ago or so that Warren Buffett (Berkshire Hathaway) bought 10 million shares of GM common stock (~$256 million):

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway built new positions in General Motors and Viacom during the first three months of 2012.

Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) holds roughly 10 million shares in General Motors (GM, Fortune 500) or roughly $256.5 million worth, according to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission Tuesday.

GM’s stock price has tanked since the November 2010 IPO, losing over a third of its value, dropping from $33/share to $22.07 currently:

Buffett is usually something of a weather vane for other investors, but he’s not necessarily a very risk averse guy, and has a history of a few big flops (not like $256 million is a lot of money to him).

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Trifecta: Capitalist pigs in space!

This Ain’t No Polish Joke

May 30th, 2012 - 8:30 am

Here’s an incomplete list of Poland’s suffering since 1939, cobbled together from memory and the interwebs.

• Invaded by Nazi Germany, in the first blitzkrieg.
• Warsaw was the first major city to endure terror bombing.
• Eastern Poland invaded by Soviet Union, and annexed.
• Katyn Forest Massacre, in which 20,000 officers — “the pride of Polish manhood” — were killed by Stalin’s order. The idea was to ensure Poland could never rise up again.
• 90% of Polish Jewry — more than three million — wiped out in Hitler’s Holocaust.
• Millions deported to Stalin’s GULAG.
• Millions of Poles removed from their lands in the West to make room for German immigrants.
• Germany’s “General Government” in rump Poland was perhaps the most brutal of all occupation governments in Europe.
• Forced labor in Nazi war plants.
• Warsaw Uprising brutally smashed by the Nazis, as the Red Army sat and watched.
• Suppression of Polish culture, including destruction of monuments and libraries.
• Warsaw suffered more damage than any other European city during six years of war.
• Poland served as the home to most of Germany’s most fearsome death camps, including Auschwitz.
• Six million Poles, Catholic and Jewish, killed in the war.
• Poland did not regain its prewar population level until the 1970s.
• After the war, Stalin imposed a brutal Communist regime on the nation, which lasted for 45 years.

Despite all of this, it was two Poles — Lech Walesa and Pope John Paul II — who did more than any other European leaders to lead the moral crusade against Communist oppression in Europe.

So to every Pole in Europe, to any Pole anywhere in the world, these things matter. You cannot use the phrase “Polish death camp” without offending tens of millions of Poles. There were no Polish death camps. The Poles were the ones, by and large, in the Nazi and Soviet death camps. And yet, that’s exactly what the author of “smart diplomacy” said last night, at a ceremony that was supposed to honor WWII Polish underground leader Jan Karski.

And yes, dammit, the remarks were prepared. Teh Won, The Smartest Man Ever to Be Elected President™, read “Polish death camp” directly off his teleprompter.

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Rhetorically Proximate to a Slimeball

May 29th, 2012 - 4:36 pm

Trifecta: Well of course we’re taking on MSNBC’s cowardly Chris Hayes.

A Salute to the Troops

May 29th, 2012 - 3:18 pm
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The official video from The Palazzo.

31/32nds Loser

May 29th, 2012 - 1:58 pm

Cue the world’s tiniest violin for Elizabeth Warren:

This coming weekend Massachusetts will hold its Democratic convention. With Warren’s brewing scandals involving her claims of Cherokee ancestry and possible plagiarism, Democrat grassroots are looking much closer at Marisa DeFranco, who is also a Democrat running for the opportunity to face Brown. And should DeFranco pick up 15% of the delegates this weekend, she and Warren will fight it out through a September primary election.

September? If DeFranco wins, that’s barely enough time to launch a statewide campaign against a well-liked incumbent. And if Warren hangs on, that’s not enough time to recover from the shots DeFranco will nail her with during the primary.

Pop some corn, because this could turn out to be the most entertaining circular firing squad in years.

Sign “O” the Times

May 29th, 2012 - 12:07 pm

High-school kids with jobs hits 20-year low:

The American job market is no place for students as the number of employed high schoolers has hit its lowest level in more than 20 years, according to new figures from the National Center for Education Statistics.

In 1990, 32 percent of high school students held jobs, versus just 16 percent now.

Kids can’t get jobs, because older people are hogging them, because they can no longer afford to retire.

Obamanomics is worst for young people, old people, and minorities — three key Democrat constituencies. I suspect this might just hurt turnout in November.


May 29th, 2012 - 9:29 am

Attack Watch is no more:

The Twitter account for “Attack Watch,” the combative in-house spin machine for President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign, has gone dark as of Tuesday morning. According to Twitter, the account is now private.

Through “Attack Watch,” the Obama campaign was watching The Daily Caller, The Drudge Report and several other media outlets of various political persuasions.

There’s probably a simple reason AW got shuttered: It sucked. It didn’t work. It was a target of merciless (and hysterical) ridicule. Eventually, it became just another new media embarrassment for the White House.

Note the use of the phrase “just another.” Obama’s team owned the new media game four years ago, but these days they’re about as effective at it as the Judean People’s Front Suicide Squad.

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A Tale of Two Search Engines

May 29th, 2012 - 8:02 am


May 28th, 2012 - 9:20 am

Trifecta: It’s our annual Memorial Day edition of the show.

Star Wars Five-O

May 27th, 2012 - 5:51 pm

I don’t care if you just spent the last 48 hours on the sofa in a slack-jawed stupor — you will not watch anything cooler than this all weekend.

Sign “O” the Times

May 26th, 2012 - 10:48 am

WSJ: Half of all US households receiving government benefits.

The phrase you’re looking for is “death spiral.”

A Marine and His Dog

May 26th, 2012 - 10:30 am

Marine Sgt. Kenneth Fischer never heard the blast. One second he was on patrol with his drug-sniffing dog, and the next he found himself down on his chest, with most of his right calf gone and a large, V-shaped piece of shrapnel under his vest and inside his right shoulder. Drak, his Belgian Malinois, was on the ground, too, just above Kenneth’s head.

Just in case you needed another reason not to like them, Fischer believes the Taliban may have purposely targeted his dog. On a DEA patrol during their first tour, Drak discovered a stash of Taliban heroin worth, by the DEA officer’s estimate, over a million dollars. Kenneth told me all of this over the course of a long brunch at The Palazzo in Las Vegas. We were both there for the Salute Our Troops event — he, as a wounded warrior, and me there as a witness.

Fischer will never know if there was an actual bounty on Drak, but the two of them “got blown up,” as he puts it, during a routine show-of-force patrol in Sangin last September. An ordinary looking Toyota Corolla, loaded with a couple hundred pounds of explosives, was driving towards them like any other car — until the Jihadi driver got close in and hit the detonator.

After taking his own physical inventory and making sure everything — well, most everything — was all where it was supposed to be, Kenneth checked on Drak. “I reached my hand up his leg, and when I got to his hip, I felt my hand slip inside,” he says. Drak whined the way a hurt dog does, to beg master to please stop. That’s about when the sergeant noticed the large pool of blood from his shoulder wound, and started calling for a corpsman.

Drak and Fischer were medivaced out on the same Blackhawk, but the dog was bleeding out. Drak was attended by a well-meaning Marine who had no rescue training for animals — he simply didn’t know what to do. In a bit of good luck, Kenneth’s best friend, Sgt. Mark Behl, was on the flight. Behl is also a dog handler, and told Kenneth that Drak would be OK, then took over Drak’s treatment. Fischer, his eardrums blown out and the chopper blades thumping, could make out nothing except “dog” and “OK.” But that was enough.

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Friday Night Videos

May 25th, 2012 - 10:02 pm
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I still haven’t given up waiting for Vol. 2.

Funk #79

May 25th, 2012 - 11:27 am

President Obama’s old “Choom Gang” is back in the news today, but all I could think of was this.

Big props to Jim J for the photoshop.

Venture capitalism: It’s OK when high-profile Democrats from swing states do it!

Analyst James McQuivey thinks he’s cracked the code behind Apple’s long-rumored TV set:

“Apple should sell the world’s first non-TV TV,” McQuivey wrote. ”Instead of selling a replacement for the TV you just bought, Apple should convince millions of Apple fans that they need a new screen in their lives. Call it the iHub, a 32-inch screen with touch, gesture, voice, and iPad control that can be hung on the wall wherever the family congregates for planning, talking, or eating.”

The analyst continues, noting that such a device could eventually replace the traditional television for many users. ”My proposal takes advantage of everything Apple has going for it: Its base of super-engaged customers, its bevy of hungry developers, its ability to open our minds to the possibility of post-PC computing form factors, and its spectacular track record with generating elegant experiences that teach us to do things we didn’t know we needed. In fact, I want this so bad I can almost taste it.”

I’m going to have to think about this one some more. But a 32″ iPad you bring with you from room to room? Why?

An iPad can be passed back and forth for games, or two iPads can share a bluetooth connection for multi-screen gaming. If you’re just watching TV, use the big screen on the wall or the iPad in your lap.

I might be falling into the same group of people who said nobody would ever need a “third screen” between their smartphones and their laptops. You have heard much from those people since the iPad become the biggest runaway hit in consumer electronics.

Do you need a fifth screen in-between your iPad and your TV?

Now That’s One Bold Red Map

May 25th, 2012 - 5:43 am

Hat tip to MartyB, who turned me on to PJ Fusco — and a whole lot of red.

Fusco explains:

We’ve taken into account past elections, including those in which several major issues were of concern, the mood of the country as evidenced by several factors, e.g. consumer confidence, amalgam of recent polls, purchasing etc., media treatment of the candidates, i.e. general media BS, and the respective organizations of both candidates, i.e. who has the more effective ground game, who is coming off as feckless and directionless, who is more prone to destructive gaffs etc.

We make no claim to a scientific presumption, rather, based on Mr. Fusco’s years of political observation, we decided to approach our call on something we’ve labeled “The Fed-up Factor,” that is, how fed up the country is with itself.

For Romney to capture that many states — pretty much every possible R pickup — requires a “wave” election, like we saw in 2008. We had another wave — an equal-and-opposite force in 2010.

Three big waves in a row? Right now, that seems unlikely. But I’d be deliriously happy to be wrong.


The Lamps are Going Out All Over Detroit

May 24th, 2012 - 3:00 pm

This is how a civilization ends.

Red China Tumbles into the Sea

May 24th, 2012 - 12:50 pm

I can’t tell you that this looks good:

China’s manufacturing activity contracted at a faster pace in May as conditions for exporters worsened during the month, the preliminary findings of a survey by HSBC showed Thursday. The “flash” reading of the manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index dropped to 48.7 in May from a final print of 49.3 in April, HSBC said. A measure below 50 in the survey indicates deterioration, whereas one above that figure shows an improvement.

POSITIVE SPIN: It’s not like we sell much to the Chinese.