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Monthly Archives: October 2012

How to Carve a Jack-O-Lantern with a Colt 1911

October 22nd, 2012 - 3:11 pm
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Yawn with Me Now at the New iPod Nano

October 22nd, 2012 - 2:14 pm

Ars Technica isn’t impressed with Apple’s new iPod Nano — which is probably exactly how it should be.

When was the last time you bought a new iPod? I’ve been using the same sixth-generation iPod Classic for five years now. And it’s been that long since Apple last updated the Classic. The screen is gorgeous. The UI is as good as it can get. The clickwheel still works. And it stores a metric crapload of music. When it dies, I’ll replace it with an identical model. If Apple has cancelled it by then, I’ll send it out for repairs.

Same goes for my wife’s iPod Nano, which dates back to 2008. If you aren’t a music packrat who needs to bring along Everything, All the Time, 16GB is more than enough storage space. Apple seems to know this. They also seem to understand that — unlike the Classic — the Nano is still something of a fashion accessory, and cheap enough to be an impulse purchase. So every fall they tweak the UI and the form factor and a couple other features, and bring out new colors. But Melissa’s still works fine for the gym, which is about the only place she still uses it. Upgrade? Why?

Truth is, Apple’s iPod lineup has had shrinking sales since iPhone use exploded. They cannibalized their own best seller when they created the world’s first truly smart phone.

So the new iPod doesn’t excite? Outside of some bitter MP3 clingers, there aren’t many buyers left to excite.

Rather Wrong

October 22nd, 2012 - 12:43 pm

Dan Rather is at it again — trying to steal an election. Well, sort of. He’s trying to delegitimize, in advance, the results of the upcoming one. Here’s a bit from his latest Facebook rant, courtesy of Charlie Spiering:

From Dan: The Presidential race is still tight, volatile. Modest edge for Obama, mostly because he still has a thin advantage in Ohio. Hard to make the case on the basis of current polls and other indications that Romney wins unless he carries Ohio. But mark well: Romney can win. Not to say that he will, just that he remains very much in the game. (1) Current polls and other indicators are subject to shifts (and may even be wrong in present estimates). (2) A few upsets in states here and there and Romney may not absolutely, positively have to win Ohio. (3) Ohio seems still close enough that Romney could upset and win there (keep in mind: the whole upper tier of Ohio state government is in the hands of the GOP now; in very close voting they have the power to influence what votes are counted and how.

In other words, if it all comes down to Ohio, the GOP will cheat. You know, like they did in Florida in 2000 by trying to count all those military ballots Al Gore so wisely tried to get tossed out in court.

Just laying the groundwork. Just in case.

The good news is, Facebook is all Rather has left. It’s a long way down from CBS News, ain’t it, Danny boy?

Required Reading/Debate Prep

October 22nd, 2012 - 9:42 am

Michelle Malkin: Bob Schieffer’s seven top moments of total bias.

This is going to be painful tonight. Romney had better be prepared with exact Obama quotes — and plenty of them.

Program Note

October 22nd, 2012 - 5:44 am

Or maybe I should have headlined this one “Last Call.” Anyway — this is it. The final Debate Drunkblog of the 2012 election cycle. I only missed one or maybe two of the GOP primary debates, so if you add them all up… in the tens place… carry the the two… I should probably be on a liver transplant list somewhere.

As always, check in on the PJMedia home page at about 8:45PM Eastern for all the fun.

Drudged Again

October 21st, 2012 - 2:51 pm

The Maestro never fails.

Trifecta: Women dig Mitt.

A Bridge Loan to Nowhere

October 20th, 2012 - 8:32 am

Two weeks to go, and the DNC is deep in debt, while the RNC has $82 million cash on hand?

Somebody pinch me.

The Week in Blogs

October 20th, 2012 - 6:00 am
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Friday Night Videos

October 19th, 2012 - 9:56 pm
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Burning Sensations was a great punk band that never made it much further than the Repo Man soundtrack — which isn’t a bad place to end up on any given Friday night. There’s some language on this one, but nothing too terrible.

Anyway, “Repo Man” the movie is something of an October tradition for me, so I’m going to switch off the computer and switch on the TV.

Tom Dougherty took a look at yesterday’s Wargaming and writes:

If we give Obama the state of Nevada, which I’m not inclined to do easily but will for this argument’s sake, we’re left with a 267-261 map and Wisconsin becomes the prize that determines the winner. Contrary to several recent polls, and an RCP Average, that says Obama has a 2.8% lead in Wisconsin, my numbers are much tighter with Obama up by only 1.2% as of this morning.

Wisconsin also has a demographic breakdown that is more favorable to Romney with notably more Catholics than the national average (29.5% to 18.3%) and fewer Latinos than the national average (5.9% to 16.3%). Additionally the gender and race demographics are favorable to Romney, and it is after all Paul Ryan’s home state. None of these guarantees a Romney win there but it is not difficult to see Romney making a late charge in Wisconsin and grabbing their EC votes to win on November 6 with a 271 to 267 margin.

And here is Tom’s starting position:

That’s a tight race, and we’ve seen a lot of maps like this one — including from yours truly.

To me, expanding the battlegrounds into Blue Country isn’t just about increasing Romney’s odds of winning, however. It’s also about increasing his margin of victory. I don’t want a win; I want a mandate. I don’t want the Democrats to keep control of the Senate; I want Romney to bring along some also-rans on his coattails, like Tom Smith in PA. There are some marginal House races where a Romney presence might just make a difference, too.

It also sends a powerful message from Romney to the new Congress: Follow me, because I lead.

And that’s a helluva lot better than: Help me along, because I barely hobbled into the White House.

Of Course the Game is Rigged

October 19th, 2012 - 12:27 pm

I just don’t have any anger left for antics like these:

Marty Morgenstern, the secretary of the California agency that substantially under-reported unemployment claims last week, contributed to President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential election campaign, The Daily Caller has learned.

That’s right. California’s Obama-donating Secretary of Whatevs made initial jobless claims look suddenly (and temporarily) better, right around the time the BLS just happened to discover enough part-time jobs nobody else had noticed, to goose the official jobless rate down under 8% in time for the election.

The most difficult and important task Romney will face if he wins is rooting out the vile progs from important levers of power and information in DC. I wonder if he knows that.

Forward into Yesterday!

October 19th, 2012 - 11:44 am

Minnesota, that bastion of progressive progress and the scourge of conservative knuckledraggers has outlawed free online education. No, really:

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that the state has decided to crack down on free education, notifying California-based startup Coursera that it is not allowed to offer its online courses to the state’s residents. Coursera, founded by Stanford computer science professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng, partners with top-tier universities around the world to offer certain classes online for free to anyone who wants to take them. You know, unless they happen to be from Minnesota.

A policy analyst for the state’s Office of Higher Education told The Chronicle that Minnesota is simply enforcing a longstanding state law requiring colleges to get the government’s permission to offer instruction within its borders. She couldn’t say whether other online education startups like edX and Udacity were also told to stay out.

Remember, “Progressive” now means “stasis” which is a polite way of saying “feudal.”

News You Can Use

October 19th, 2012 - 10:48 am

BREAKING: “Campaign Moves into Final Phase, Driven by Electoral Math

It’s a good thing we have Time magazine around to tell us this stuff.

It’s Personal and Business

October 19th, 2012 - 9:38 am

Micky Kantor:

Late in September, the Department of Commerce issued a preliminary decision to scrap a 16-year-old trade agreement governing the import of Mexican-grown tomatoes into the United States. That might seem like an obscure and prosaic federal government action to most people, but to those of us who have watched the evolution of the tomato market over the last few decades, it is really a startling departure whose impact could be devastating.

I say startling because the agreement, which the U.S. and Mexican governments adopted when I was Secretary of Commerce, has been one of the models of successful trade policy. Startling also because, if the U.S. government ultimately adopts the preliminary decision, it will reward a segment of the U.S. tomato growing industry that has simply not kept up with the innovation and quality of its counterparts in Mexico, likely set off a spiral of retaliation that will hurt American exporters of other commodities, and most certainly drive up the price of tomatoes here. What’s more, it will pick a fight with Mexico, one of our biggest trading partners, that we don’t need and can easily avoid.

I can answer Kantor’s question with one word: Obamanomics.

Mexico is a friend, and must be bullied. American tomato growers might hire union labor in California, and must be coddled. And if they need subsidies, no problemo.

Poor Kantor. He is, and worked for, a centrist Chamber-of-Commerce-style Democrat. These vile prog thugs have taken over his party, leaving very little place for him.

Why, They Would Never!

October 19th, 2012 - 8:51 am

Trifecta: Are Bill and Hillary undermining Obama on Benghazi?

Lots of chatter at American Thinker and elsewhere over that IDB poll showing Jews breaking for Romney. Well, cut it out. It just ain’t so. Or if it is so, you can’t tell from this poll.

Here’s IBD’s own breakdown:

Want to know what the fine print says after the asterisks? “*Small sample size. Interpret with caution.”

Interpret with caution? “Don’t read anything into this at all,” would be more like it. IBD talked to 909 likely voters. Assuming their samples are representative of the nation as a whole, that means they spoke with about 13 Jews. What conclusions can you draw about Jewish sentiment across the nation by doing phone interviews with 13 random members of the Tribe?

None. No conclusions. Your sample size is so vanishingly small as to be meaningless. And that’s before we even get to the 3.5% margin of error for the entire sample of 909 people. You know how high that shoots up when you whittle it down to 13?

Well, I don’t know, either. But it’s very, very high. And Jewish sample is very, very meaningless.

That’s Gonna Leave a Mark

October 18th, 2012 - 3:23 pm
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Bill is doing is very level best to help. Honest.

Wargaming the Electoral College

October 18th, 2012 - 1:14 pm

Word is, and nobody at Camp Obama has done a fully-assed job of denying it, that the campaign is building a “firewall” around four states: IA, NH, NV and OH. Now “firewall” might be the correct word, but I’ve been using “triage.” They’re hoping — praying? — for an election night return that looks like so.

Obama can lose any one state, except OH, and still win. He can even lose two states, provided one of them is NH and the other one isn’t WI (or OH, of course).

If the Obama camp’s triage looks a little optimistic — desperate? — it’s for two reasons. The first is, they’re playing defense deep in their own territory. All the historic gains of 2008 have proven as ephemeral as closing Gitmo or getting us down to 5.6% unemployment. The second is, the opening given here to Romney. With CO, FL, NC, and VA all seemingly safe in his pocket, there is every reason for Romney and Ryan to start hitting MI, MN, PA, and WI every bit as hard as they’re hitting OH.

Obama wants to defend four states? Screw that, Mitt — make him cover twice that many.

If we go back to Tuesday’s map, it could very well be that IA, NH and NV are already gone, since Obama has never done better than 47% in any reputable poll in any of those three states. Romney could then become the first Republican to lose OH and win the election. In other words, if Romney takes my advice and pushes into MI, MN, PA, and WI, then Obama has to sweep everything behind his firewall or he’s probably toast.

Or to borrow Peter Ingemi’s marvelous way of putting it, “Ride right through them, they’re demoralized as hell!

Also read: Hey Obama, Your Firewall Is on Fire

Required Viewing

October 18th, 2012 - 9:04 am
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It’s the new Firewall from Bill Whittle.

Is Debbie Wasserman-Schultz Running Scared?

October 17th, 2012 - 1:05 pm

Just got a fundraising email from Karen Harrington, running against BoF* down in Florida. Read that second graph.

Can that be right? Is Karen really out-raising The Beast? If you’re so inclined, click over to her fundraising site and rub a little salt in that wound.

BTW, I’ve met Karen at a couple events, and she’s an impressive lady. DWS’s last challenger went down 70-30, but Karen was last polled within striking distance at -5. If anyone can unseat DWS in a D+13 district (not a typo), it’s Karen Harrington.
(more…)

Fainting with Damn Praise

October 17th, 2012 - 11:27 am

Trifecta: CNN’s Piers Morgan seems to find Mitt Romney to be a pretty despicable character — and maybe just the man to save America.

BONUS: Scott Ott’s conclusion will knock you flat.

That’s no exaggeration.

High Speed Derailment

October 17th, 2012 - 9:40 am

What’s the difference between China’s high-speed rail project and California’s?

China’s will cost comparatively little, get done in a big hurry, and end up killing some passengers before begin shut down for good.. California’s will cost four times what it should, take twice as long to build as it should, and end up never being used.

Hand it to the Chinese: At least they know how to make the killer trains run on time.

(H/T, Glenn.)

Candy Crowley is… The MODERATOR!

October 17th, 2012 - 9:15 am

Mickey Kaus on Crowley’s horrible, terrible, no good, very bad moment on Benghazi:

Crowley did not let viewers draw their own conclusions. She didn’t let the candidates make their arguments about what Obama’s statement did or did not mean–obviously the right course to take. She flatly intervened to declare that Obama’s interpretation was right.

Crowley wasn’t a moderator. She wasn’t even biased. She was, as Ace said about the entire MSM on Twitter a while back, an advocate for one side.

A biased media can be tolerated. An “advocacy media” (Ace’s exact phrase) will be the death of this Republic, unless we kill the beast.

Hiatus

October 17th, 2012 - 5:07 am

Not really. But this morning I’m coping with two small boys and my third drunkblogging hangover in as many weeks.

So… things may be a little light here until I’ve had a chance to get the kids to school and my head in a sink full of Bloody Mary.

Oohhhhhhhmmmm Oohhhhhhhmmmm Oohhhhhhhmmmm

October 16th, 2012 - 4:45 pm

This is where, by tradition, I get serious about the carboloading portion of the debate prep. I’ve got a sick kid in my bed, a two-year-old entranced by Santa Buddies (it’s part of a series of movies starring Golden pups — don’t ask), and my lovely bride is on the way home with fried chicken and mashed potatoes.

But before she gets here, I have to finish this plate of pasta. And this extra large martini.

Drunkblogging will be at the top of the PJMedia home page at 8:45PM Eastern. Sharp. Ish.

And if it’s not at the top of the page, I am so suing my agent.

[you don't have an agent -ed. Shhh.]

Tonight’s Debate Prep

October 16th, 2012 - 3:21 pm
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This is what Mitt Romney is up against when President Obama has a friendly crowd. I hope Romney is up to the challenge.

Watch While There’s Still Time

October 16th, 2012 - 2:28 pm

Trifecta: I’m hosting today’s debate preview edition. Bill and Scott have everything you need to know about Obama, Romney, and Candy Crowley’s titanic ego.

Plus, something about spaghetti you never, ever wanted to know.

How Do You Say Merde in French?

October 16th, 2012 - 1:58 pm

From the Telegraph:

“The situation is very serious. Some business leaders are in a state of quasi-panic,” said Laurence Parisot, head of employers’ group MEDEF.

“The pace of bankruptcies has accelerated over the summer. We are seeing a general loss of confidence by investors. Large foreign investors are shunning France altogether. It’s becoming really dramatic.”
MEDEF, France’s equivalent of the CBI, said the threat has risen from “a storm warning to a hurricane warning”, adding that the Socialist government of François Hollande has yet to understand the “extreme gravity” of the crisis.

The immediate bone of contention is Article 6 of the new tax law, which raises the top rate of capital gains tax from 34.5pc to 62.2pc.

And France’s leftwing nutjob is just getting started. Although you can probably imagine what would happen if ours got another four years and a lot more “flexibility.”

Program Note

October 16th, 2012 - 12:33 pm

The Death Flu has languished to a not-too-sore throat, which I learned last night, is nicely soothed by a vodka-rocks or three.

In other words, Presidential Debate Drunkblogging will go on as promised.

Tune in to the PJMedia home page at about 8:45PM Eastern for all the fun.