Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Avoid the "zero catch" webhost

Unlike its name, http://0catch.com has lots of catches. It is an old fashioned webhost with lots of intrusive popups and a small webspace allowance. I had my content up there for some years but they have recently deployed some very aggressive bots which have now shut down my site twice for no apparent reason. Content that was OK for years is now not OK, apparently. I of course used their help system to protest but just got brushed off. So goodbye to them! The free webhosts I like best at the moment are http://www.110mb.com/ and http://www.000webhost.com/


There Go The Jobs In The Energy Sector

The EPA led by Lisa Jackson, a big global warming acolyte, is prepared to announce next week that CO2 is a dangerous gas. That's right, everytime you exhale according to our imperial federal government you will be emitting a dangerous gas.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will early next week, possibly as soon as Monday, officially declare carbon dioxide a public danger, a trigger that could mean regulation for emitters across the economy, according to several people close to the matter.

Such an "endangerment" decision is necessary for the EPA to move ahead early next year with new emission standards for cars. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has said it could also mean large emitters such as power stations, cement kilns, crude-oil refineries and chemical plants would have to curb their greenhouse gas output.

The announcement would also give President Barack Obama and his climate envoy negotiating leverage at a global climate summit starting next week in Copenhagen, Denmark and increase pressure on Congress to pass a climate bill that would modify the price of polluting.
I guess this another case of where the science is settled.

In the past activist judges have used previous reports citing CO2 as a dangerous gas as a reason to bar the construction of clean coal plants and to restrict the building of refineries, even though there was no official stamp on that line of reasoning. With the EPA making it official, it will be yet another blow to manufacturing and the energy sectors of our economy.

There won't any recovery anytime soon at the rate this is going. Without jobs and entire sections of our business world being handcuffed with everything from salary caps to ridiculous rulings like this, there simply won't be anywhere to hire people.

No, I am not putting much stock in those November unemployment numbers. Businesses just weren't up to laying off more people at the end of the year. Keep an eye on the numbers for January, which will of course take all the experts once again by surprise.




Jack Wheeler gives us what appears to be a full account of Sarah's speech at the Gridiron Club. The club is the oldest and most prestigious journalist organization in Washington DC. The annual Gridiron Dinner is attended by the media elite, at which the president is traditionally the speaker. This year, President Zero was the first president to refuse to address The Gridiron Dinner since Grover Cleveland. On Saturday December 5th., this year, the black tie dinner had double the attendance of recent years - for instead of Mr. Zero, the speaker was Sarah Palin. The tradition of the dinner is that the speaker pokes fun at himself and the attendees. Wheeler says that Sarah was such a hit there were dozens of the most liberal elite journalists in America laughing their heads off, many wiping tears of laughter from their eyes:
Good evening. It's great to be in Washington. I am loving the weather [it was snowing]. I braved the elements and went out for a jog! Or, as Newsweek calls it, a cover-shoot. I feel so at home here in DC. I can see the Russian Embassy from my hotel room!

It's a privilege to be here tonight at the Washington DC Barnes & Noble. Tonight, I'll be reading excerpts from my new book. Perhaps you've heard of it? "Going Rogue." Yukon wasn't sure if I'd go with that title and somebody suggested I follow the East Coast self-help trend and go with, "How To Look Like A Million Bucks...For Only 150 Grand." Todd liked, "The Audacity of North Slope." [She nods to him as he's at the head table]

Hey, I considered not having a title at all. I've said it before, but you Beltway types just don't seem to get it. You don't need a title to make an impact. But anyway, let's get started. I'll begin my first reading on Page 209.

It was pitch black when we touched down in Arizona late on August 27, 2008. The next morning we drove to John McCain's ranch in Sedona. John was waiting on the porch. Before he can say a word, I tell him, I'm quoting now: "I know why I'm here, and I'm ready. But, I'm worried. The cost of credit protection for the largest U.S. banks is rising precipitously. Have you given any thought to the run on the entities in the parallel banking system? Do you realize the vulnerability created when these institutions borrow short term in liquid markets to invest long term in illiquid assets?"

John said, "you betcha!" I thought, "you betcha?" Who talks that way?

Well, sometimes you just have to trust your instincts. When you don't, you end up in places like this. Who would have guessed that I'd be palling around with this group? At least now I can put a face to all the newspapers I do read. It is good to be here and in front of this audience of leading journalists and intellectuals. Or, as I call it, a death panel.

To be honest, I had some serious reservations about coming to visit your cozy little club. The Gridiron still hasn't offered membership to anyone from my hometown paper in Wasilla, the Matanuska-Susitna Valley Frontiersman. And my dad thought it was just a plain bad idea to leave the book tour for some football game. He might have a point! [She waves to her parents at a table at the back of the room] Hi, Dad! Hi, Mom! They crashed the party, you know.

I've been touring this great, great land of ours over the last few weeks. I have to say, the view is much better from inside the bus, than under it! But really, I am thrilled to be with you. And I'd like to thank the Gridiron for the invitation and Dick Cooper for his introduction. To paraphrase John F. Kennedy, this has to be the most extraordinary collection of people who have gathered to viciously attack me since the last corporate gathering at CBS.

Despite what you have read, or more likely, despite what you have written, I do feel a real bond with all of you. I studied journalism, earned a communications degree and for a time only wanted to be a journalist. I was even a television sportscaster back home. I'm guessing some of you probably got your start the exact same way... once there was television. Let me get back to the book.

I know that many of you are still upset because I wouldn't play that silly Washington game. You know, the one where all of you read a book in its entirety, from the first page of the index to the last. But think about it, because you actually had to read the whole book in the vain hope of finding your name, you now know all about Denali, mom, dad, ungulate eyeballs, slaying salmon on the Nushagak and Ugashik near Alegnigak, where we make agootak and moose chili! You're welcome.

Still, I want to do something very special for this audience of Washington elite. So, I'll read from the index--which I chose not to include in the hardback. Would you believe me if I said I didn't include it because we wanted to save trees?

Under A we have... Alaska, media not understanding. Pages 1-432.

Under B... Biased media. Pages 1-432

And under C... Conservative media. See acknowledgments. I'll stop there.

I know this can be a long night, and as I understand it, we're going to break with a Gridiron tradition. Normally, the Democrat speaker would deliver a speech after me. But instead, John McCain's campaign staff asked if they could use that time for a rebuttal.

A lot has been made of a few campaign relationships. The closeness. The warm fuzzy feelings. John and I both agree all those staffers should just move past it. It's history. Let's just say, if I ever need a bald campaign manager, it appears all I'm left with is James Carville. I don't want to say that I've burned a bridge, but I know all about canceling a bridge to nowhere.

That Democrat speaker I referred to is, of course, the one-and-only Barney Frank. And I'm the controversial one? Barney, the nation owes you and the government a debt. A huge, historic, unbelievable debt. But, it's good to be here with you, Mr. Chairman. Because by Chairman, I don't just mean the House Financial Services Committee. As far as I can tell, Barney's also the Chair of AIG, CITI, and the Bank of America.

I don't want to say that the U.S. Government is taking over the role of the private sector, but I have to admit, on the flight here, thumbing through a magazine and looking at a photo of President Obama with the President of China, the person next to me pointed at it and said, "Hu's a communist." I thought they were asking a question.

Still, when I see this administration in action, I can't help think of what might have been. I could be the Vice President overseeing the signing of bailout checks. And Joe Biden would be on the road, selling his new book, "Going Rogaine."

Speaking of books.... Did I mention mine? "Going Rogue" Makes a great stocking stuffer. Available now at a bookstore near you. Hey, I have to pay for my campaign vetting bill somehow. Really, the response has been great. So I'll close by reading a final passage.

Page 403: ...I've been asked a lot lately, "Where are you going next?' Good question!

Wherever I go I know that, as with anyone in the public eye, I'll continue to have my share of disagreements with those in the media. Maybe even more than my share. It will come as no surprise that I don't think I was always treated fairly, or equally. But despite that, I respect the media very much. It's important. A free press allows for vigorous debate! And that debate is absolutely vital for our democracy. So as hard as it can sometimes be, we must all look past personal grievances. We must move beyond petty politics. And we must allow these incredibly talented and hard-working women and men to ask the hard questions and hold us, and our government, accountable. Because their mission is as true as the sun rising over the Talkeetna and Susitna Mountains....

Okay - so none of that is actually in the book. Not a word. But I do believe it! And I believe we live in a beautiful country blessed with so many different people who want the best for their children, families and for our great nation. I'm so proud to be an American.

And that is what I'll be talking about when I travel to where I'm headed. No better place than here to announce where I'm going. I'm going to Iowa! I'll be there tomorrow from noon to 3:00 pm at the Barnes & Noble on Sergeant Road in Sioux City. Come early. Long lines are expected. Thank you everyone. God Bless the U.S.A!



The Only Thing Less Popular Than Paul Krugman is the New York Times

Scott Rasmussen ran a couple of surveys to illustrate the importance of how poll questions are framed. The results make that point quite effectively, but are also interesting in their own right.

Rasmussen surveyed likely voters with respect to two pundits, Paul Krugman and John Fund. He found, not surprisingly, that neither is well known to the general public. Krugman scores exactly even, 22 percent favorable and 22 percent unfavorable, with 55 percent knowing nothing about him. Of those who know who Krugman is, 4 percent view him "very favorably" and 6 percent "very unfavorably." Fund is even less well known; his favorables/unfavorables are 12/22. (My guess is that most of those 22 percent either had Fund confused with someone else or were just reacting to the sound of his name.)

Here's the interesting part: in a separate survey, when Krugman was identified as "New York Times columnist Paul Krugman," his numbers plummeted to 25 percent favorable and 37 percent unfavorable. Moreover, his "very unfavorable" percentage more than tripled to 20 percent. On the other hand, when Fund was identified as a Wall Street Journal columnist, the opposite happened: his favorable/unfavorable percentages flipped to 34/20. All of which suggests that the public has pretty well caught on to the Times, which, as Rasmussen notes, was viewed favorably by only 24 percent in a 2008 survey.




Rupert Murdoch attacks bailout funds for media companies: "News Corporation chairman and chief executive Rupert Murdoch has rejected the idea of public funding for media companies, saying if news outlets were not attracting audiences they deserved to fail. The government's only role in helping media should be to reduce unnecessary regulation and eliminate obstacles to growth and investment, he said last week at a US Federal Trade Commission workshop on the future of journalism in the internet age. "The prospect of the US government becoming directly involved in commercial journalism ought to be chilling for anyone who cares about freedom of speech," Mr Murdoch said. US congressional hearings in September -- into how the government could help -- heard ideas such as giving tax breaks to newspapers that restructured to operate as non-profit businesses. "In exchange, of course, (papers would be) giving up their right to endorse political candidates," Mr Murdoch told the FTC. "The most damning problem with government help is . . . (it) props up those who are producing things that customers do not want. In other words, it subsidises the failures and penalises the successes." A newspaper aid program is under way in France"

Nobel acceptance will be a tricky moment: "He’s the Nobel Peace Prize laureate who just ordered 30,000 more troops into war. He’s the winner who says he didn’t deserve to win. He’s not quite 11 months on the job and already in the company of Mother Teresa and the Dalai Lama. This is President Barack Obama’s Nobel moment, an immense honor shadowed by awkward timing. When Obama leaves for Oslo, Norway, on Wednesday to be lauded for his style of international diplomacy, he goes knowing that the American people are more concerned about something else: peace of mind. The economy has left millions of them hurting. … Unemployment is in double digits even as the bleeding of jobs has slowed. Meanwhile, there’s no hiding the contrast of war and peace.” [The magic of Leftism: Only Obama can escalate a war and get a peace prize at the same time]

More on general market efficiency: "It’s very difficult for any single individual/entity to beat index returns. For anyone who has some money set aside, the advice, ‘Put it in an index fund’ is sage. Very few mutual funds beat index returns in a given year. Over many years, almost none do. The average investor does not have access to inside information. The stock price moves within seconds in response to any information made public. If someone sees an incongruity or arbitrage opportunity, many others have probably already seen it and have already acted on it. ‘What makes you think you can beat the market?’ is a good question. It is also a question which I don’t think is applied enough.” [Hmmmm ... I don't know about that. I don't follow the market much these days but when I did I was always ahead of the index. You just have to have correct theories. Most people don't. And my portfolio came through the GFC in pretty good shape. Even the Dubai affair has had only a minor effect on it]

UK: The big squeeze: "Next year, Britain’s middle classes and the rich will face the biggest squeeze on their living standards in decades, shows research produced by accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers for The Independent. In the build-up to what promises to be an exceptionally tough pre-Budget report this Wednesday, PwC says the typical British family (’Middle England’) already faces a decline of 2.4 per cent, or £300 a year, in its discretionary spending power, after tax, mortgages, food and other essentials.”

Nonsense on poverty: "The Joseph Rowntree Trust released its report on the state of poverty in the UK and brought forth the usual howls of outrage about, well, pretty much everything really. I was actually rather enjoying the howls of how we now have Dickensian, Victorian, levels of poverty for I always do enjoy hysterical hyperbole. But it set me thinking, do we actually have such levels? Of course, we simply do not have, absent a very few families blighted by mental illness, drugs or drink, anything like the physical poverty of those days.”

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)


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