Daily Archives: January 30, 2010

Liberal Obama Butt-Kissers

Within seconds of Obama completing his State of the Union address to the nation last Wednesday, the liberal MSM were giving rave reviews for his performance.

The gushing began with “Hardball” host Chris Matthews who blathered incoherently to fellow MSNBCers Rachel Maddow and Keith Olbermann, 

“[Obama] is post-racial by all appearances. You know, I forgot he was black tonight for an hour. You know, he’s gone a long way to become a leader of this country and past so much history in just a year or two. I mean it’s something we don’t even think about. I was watching, I said, “Wait a minute. He’s an African-American guy in front of a bunch of other white people, and there he is, President of the United States, and we’ve completely forgotten that tonight. Completely forgotten it.”

Then Howard Fineman of the near moribund Newsweek, told Olbermann: “If presidential leadership were only about giving speeches, the jackhammers would already be at work on Mt. Rushmore:”

Katie Couric prattled: “[Obama is] better at making us smarter than making us angry.” Soon thereafter, CBS News reported that it’s quick poll revealed 83% support for the “proposals made in [Obama’s] speech.”

ABC’s George Stephanopoulos compared Obama to Reagan: ““What I saw there is the President not being contrite like Bill Clinton in 1995, much more defiant, more like Ronald Reagan in 1983.”

On NBC’s Today on Thursday, Matt Lauer cited Obama’s “humility” to press former Florida Governor Jeb Bush on Republicans not supporting the President’s agenda: “He showed humility….will you now get behind this president and will other Republicans?” Thankfully, Bush had the presence of mind to point out: “I don’t think it’s humble to say that you didn’t communicate a message and that’s the reason why people opposed the health care plan in front of Congress right now by a dramatic margin.”

The Washington Post’s Tom Shales promoted the same humble theme in a Thursday article:

Obama does have the ability to snatch humility from the jaws of hubris. While House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pontificated about how honored and thrilled she was to be able to introduce the great and wonderful man, the expression on Obama’s face, even the cock of his head, suggested he was basking and glowing in the praise. But later on, in the speech itself, he showed himself to be capable of healthful self-mockery….There was humility but no remorse in Obama’s words or the way in which he delivered them. He hailed and commended American values and seemed also to personify some of them – directness, candor, neighborliness. At moments he was less the man in the White House than the guy next door.

Shales concluded, “[T]hey could have had a live shot of purple people-eaters watching from Mars and not upstaged Obama. As a persuasive political speaker, he’s got no serious competition.”

Someone, bring me a barf bag!



Weekend Open Thread

Okay, friends, here’s your Open Thread!

What’s on your mind this weekend? For those (I’m esp. thinking of Cindy in Oklahoma, Gio and Doc’s Wife in hilly NC) in the path of the swath of rain, snow, and ice sweeping from the south to the east, how are you coping? Our prayers that you stay safe and that the electricity stays on….

In the meantime, enjoy these photos sent by the inimitable and incorrigibly mischievous FellowshipOfMinds member Will. It’s good to know the men and women in the U.S. military have their wit and sense of humor firmly intact. 😉 


…and now, here’s my favorite:

God bless all our 2- and 4-legged soldiers!

This Is What One Trillion Dollars Look Like

Josef Stalin, who ruled the Soviet Union from 1927 to 1953, knew well human psychology and the limits of human empathy, specifically how our minds cannot really grasp the import of large abstract numbers. He is credited with this cynical but astute observation:

“One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is just a statistic.”

Our human inability to grasp the meaning of very large numbers is exploited by political elites. Such is the case with America’s rapidly ballooning deficits. The U.S. deficit for fiscal year 2009 came in at a record $1.42 trillion, more than triple the record set in 2008. America’s total national debt is now a whopping $12 trillion and climbing.

Fiscal conservatives can scream about our national debt till the cows come home, but doing so just makes people’s eyes glaze over. A million, a billion, a trillion…. Bwah, bwah, bwah…. So, to help bring home what these fantastic numbers mean, here’s what a trillion dollars actually look like.


What does one TRILLION dollars look like?

All this talk about “stimulus packages” and “bailouts”…

A billion dollars…

A hundred billion dollars…

Eight hundred billion dollars…

One TRILLION dollars…

What does that look like? I mean, these various numbers are tossed around like so many doggie treats, so I thought I’d take Google Sketchup out for a test drive and try to get a sense of what exactly a trillion dollars looks like.

We’ll start with a $100 dollar bill. Currently the largest U.S. denomination in general circulation. Most everyone has seen them, slighty fewer have owned them. Guaranteed to make friends wherever they go.


A packet of one hundred $100 bills is less than 1/2″ thick and contains $10,000. Fits in your pocket easily and is more than enough for week or two of shamefully decadent fun.


Believe it or not, this next little pile is $1 million dollars (100 packets of $10,000). You could stuff that into a grocery bag and walk around with it.

$1,000,000 (one million dollars)

While a measly $1 million looked a little unimpressive, $100 million is a little more respectable. It fits neatly on a standard pallet…

$100,000,000 (one hundred million dollars)

And $1 BILLION dollars… now we’re really getting somewhere…

$1,000,000,000 (one billion dollars)

Next we’ll look at ONE TRILLION dollars. This is that number we’ve been hearing so much about. What is a trillion dollars? Well, it’s a million million. It’s a thousand billion. It’s a one followed by 12 zeros.

You ready for this?

It’s pretty surprising.

Go ahead…

Scroll down…





Ladies and gentlemen… I give you $1 trillion dollars

$1,000,000,000,000 (one trillion dollars)

Notice those pallets are double stacked.
…and remember those are $100 bills.

So the next time you hear someone toss around the phrase “trillion dollars”… that’s what they’re talking about.

* Step by step calculations & dimensions are here for those who may be interested.
* You may also be interested to see the U.S. National Debt in $100 dollar bills.

Trees On Mars?

Are you ready to, once again, go down the rabbit hole with me?

Yeah? Okay. Here we go….

Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun in our solar system (Earth is the third). Named after the Roman god of war, Mars is also called the Red Planet because of its reddish color from the iron oxide prevalent on its surface.

For many years, Mars was thought to be dry, barren, and utterly lifeless. Then geological evidence gathered by unmanned missions suggested that Mars once had large-scale water coverage on its surface.  On June 20, 2008, scientists said they “found proof” of water ice on Mars away from the polar ice caps, a discovery made by NASA’s Phoenix Mars Lander. Since all life as we know it requires water, that Mars once might have had plentiful water raises the possibility that there once was life on the Red Planet.

Recently, as recounted in an article in the UK’s Telegraph, a NASA probe sent back photographs of what appears to be trees on the surface of Mars. The images seem to show rows of dark “conifers” sprouting from dunes and hills on the planet surface. Here’s a photo in the Telegraph:

Nasa photographs 'trees' on red planet

NASA was quick to disabuse the public from thinking these really are trees. Instead, NASA spokeswoman Candy Hansen insists that the “trees” are an optical illusion — trails of debris caused by landslides as ice melts in Mars’s spring. We are told the photographs actually show sand dunes coated with a thin layer of frozen carbon dioxide, or dry ice, less than 240 miles from the planet’s north pole. For that matter, one can even see a cloud of dust, just to the left of centre of the picture, where an avalanche is caught happening.
But are these “trees” really optical illusion, as Hansen says? Take a look at the same pic, but in high resolution:

Umm, do these look like sand dunes to you?

And if you really want to go deeper into that rabbit hole, take a look at this video of Dr. Tom Van Flandern, former Chief Astronomer at the U.S. Naval Observatory, speaking on artificial structures on Mars at a conference in Washington, D.C., on May 8, 2001:

For more stunning pictures of Mars, CLICK HERE.


Keith Olbermann Speaks!

The smartest thing MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann ever said! LOL