Saturday, August 1, 2020

They Don’t Call Them the Dog Days For Nothing

I know it’s Saturday, the day normally reserved for all things feline, but it’s August 1st which means we are officially in the dog days of summer - when all manner of madness can occur.

Specific dates for the dog days vary – some believe them to be the entire month of August, in Scandinavia they run from July 22 through August 22 and the Old Farmer’s Almanac pegs them as July 3 – August 11. Most people associate them with the hottest and most humid days of summer – so miserable that it drives dogs mad. In fact it has less to do with overheated pooches and more to do with the night sky, or early morning sky to be exact. The Dog Days coincide with the early morning rising of Sirius, the Dog Star.

Let's Get 'Sirius' About the Dog Star, Sky's Brightest Twinkler

Sirius is part of the constellation Canis Majoris - the “Greater Dog” – from which Sirius gets its official name, Alpha Canis Majoris.

So if you can’t sleep due to the heat, humidity or events of the day you can always get up and watch the Dog star rise.  And if you can pick out the entire constellation, well good on you. I will confess, I’ve never been very good at picking the constellations out of a sea of stars.

Canis Major: Facts, Myth, Star Map, Major Stars, Deep Sky Objects ...Lovely, but I’m not spotting Spot

Sirius, being the brightest star in the sky, is easy to spot but it’s accompanying canine frame, well not so much, not for me anyway.

But then a real dog is a lot more fun anyway.

Jim Daly (1940) | Painting, Country art, ArtJim Daly Painting

Of course they’ll expect to take turns.

tireswing hashtag on Twitter“Hey, my turn Buddy. They don’t call them the dog days for nothing.”

Friday, July 31, 2020

Sum Are Dim and Others Are Dimmi-er

With so many players in contention for this week’s Pernicious Prevarication Award, Senator Diane Feinstein still ran away from the competition with this contribution:

"We hold China as a potential trading partner, as a country that has pulled tens of millions of people out of poverty in a short period of time, and as a country growing into a respectable nation amongst other nations. I deeply believe that," Feinstein said during a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting.Washington Free Beacon

Well sure, as long as you accept the premise that a “respectable nation” behaves thusly:

Bloody Harvest—How Everyone Ignored the Crime of the Century ...

  • Censors what data their citizens can see on the Internet (whoops! we might be guilty on that count too)
  • Denies their citizens freedom of speech (again, whoops!)
  • Denies their citizens freedom of religion (this is getting embarrassing)
  • Conducts forced sterilizations/abortions
  • Sends enemies of the State to re-education camps
  • Reneges on significant International agreements such as the 1984 Sino-British Declaratio which guaranteed autonomy for the former British colony of Hong Kong through 2047.

The Uyghurs living in captivity under the control of the Chinese Communist Party, as well as the residents of Hong Kong begging to keep their democracy might beg to differ with Ms. Senator Feinstein’s characterization of the country being a “respectable nation.” If they were allowed to voice their opinions at all, which of course they aren’t. 

Although I can see why Senator Feinstein might think China a damn fine country: after all it did make her and her husband “respectfully” wealthy – which automatically qualifies her for our annual Marie Antoinette Award as well.

Bastille Day Recipes French Revolution -

My disdain for these elites grows more trenchant with each passing day. I wonder if this is how the French Revolution started?

I think I’ll just go eat some moon cakes…

Mooncakes and More! Celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival! - Little ...and dim sum.

Because you all know how I love the dim sums

286 Best Joe Biden is a Liar & a Moron images in 2020 | Joe biden ...Sum are dim and others are dimmi-er.

And wait for the revolution.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

The Revolution Will Be Neither Televised Or Tweeted

The Congressional hearings over the past 2 days – AG Barr on Tuesday and tech CEOs yesterday – clearly demonstrate a major source of the problems in America today: the caliber of people the American people keep electing to represent them.

Nadler Removes Mask To Remind Republican House Members They're Not ...

As a result both hearings were basically a waste of time. The Barr hearing was intended to provide campaign footage for Democrats.  The Big Tech antitrust hearings that theoretically examined the conservative bias of various platforms simply served as an arena for the CEOs to provide plausible deniability.

Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon – oddly nobody from Twitter – all declared their absolute neutrality.

Facebook mounted perhaps the most dubious defense of the lot. Rep. James Sensenbrenner asked Mark Zuckerberg about the video of doctors promoting the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine that had been taken down by Facebook as well as other platforms:

SENSENBRENNER: “It was reported that Donald Trump Jr, got taken down (from Twitter) for a period of time, because he put something up of the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine. There still is a debate on whether it is effective. Wouldn’t that be up to somebody else to say, okay, what somebody posted on this really isn’t true?”

ZUCKERBERG: We do not want to become the arbiters of — of truth. I think that that would be a bad position for us to be in and not — not what we should be doing. But on specific claims, if someone is gonna go out and say that hydroxychloroquine is proven to cure COVID, when in fact it has not been proven to cure COVID and that that statement could lead people to take a drug that in some cases some of the data suggests that it might be harmful to people, we think that we should take that down. That could cause imminent risk of harm.

Sort of a sorry, not sorry explanation: we don’t want to be the arbiter of truth…except when we think we have to be the arbiter of truth.

Just Not Sorry! (the backstory). This is the behind the scenes ...

Such a display of logic certainly lends credence to the Winklevoss twins’ suit alleging theft and fraud against Zuckerberg for stealing their UConnect concept.

Cameron Winklevoss and Tyler Winklevoss holding drinks at the Met GalaMan, these two would make a much better “face” for Facebook than Zucky

If ever there has been a time and circumstance that demanded anti-trust action that time is now and the stranglehold of Big Tech on the information flow in America is the circumstance.

And don’t even get me started on Twitter censorship…

Your Tweet Has Been Muted For the Good of Our Flock

The Revolution is coming, don’t say you haven’t been warned.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Burn Baby, Burn. Or Only Rightwing Flamethrowers Are Terrorists

“If the hearing of Attorney General William Barr today made anything clear at all, it is this: The Democratic Party is unwilling to back up the federal authorities who are defending the federal courthouse in Portland, Oregon. In four hours, the House heard from the Democrats nary the slightest expression of support of the officers who are on the front-line of this battle.” - NYSun

Rioters attempt to break in and burn down Portland Federal Courthouse

It’s pretty bad when the cancel culture cancels their own hearing. But that’s exactly what the Democrats did; first they demanded the Attorney General appear before Congress to testify…and then they attempted to cancel his testimony by “reclaiming their time.” One might think - if one were cynical - that the Dems created yesterday’s spectacle just to provide their news networks with another chance to air the Democrat narrative. Unfortunately for them the holes in that narrative are becoming glaringly obvious.

Source: US, Oregon in talks about drawing down federal presence in ...

Mr. Barr was unflappable, but blunt. One highlight came when he was being questioned by Congressman Steve Chabot, a Republican of Ohio. “Federal courts are under attack,” Mr. Barr said, before exclaiming: “Since when is it okay to try and burn down a federal court?”

Tear gas fired again; Portland protest standoff continuesOr even trash it for that matter?

That a U.S. attorney general has to make that point to Congress is itself amazing, and Mr. Barr marked it well. “This is the first time in my memory,” he said at one point, “that the leaders of one of our great two political parties — the Democratic Party — are not coming out and condemning mob violence and the attack on federal courts. Why can’t we just say, you know, violence against federal courts has to stop?”

Allow me to answer Mr. Barr’s baseline question, “since when is it ok to try and burn down a federal court?”

Since the Democrats decided it was more important to get rid of President Trump because they simply don’t like him than to either uphold the Constitution or maintain the rule of law.  It’s really that simple, and it is simply unacceptable.

Department watchdogs to investigate federal law enforcement ...

So here we are, still debating whether people throwing incendiary devices into a Federal structure are even criminals, let alone terrorists. Apparently that designation is reserved exclusively for ‘rightwing’ nut jobs like Timothy McVeigh.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

From Dust Were Ye Made and Dust Ye Shall Be

Sparrows were ubiquitous when I was very young, they nested in our garage, filled neighborhood trees and lent their rather tuneless chatter to the soundtrack of growing up middle class in middle America in the middle of the last century. 

I sing because I’m happy,
I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

You know, back when men were men, women were free to be women and even the below average children learned in school that America was good and communism was bad. Rather than the other way around.

Sparrows seem to have fallen into a bit of a decline for the time being. Suburban garages are mostly connected to the house now, their doors kept closed to discourage both thieves and wildlife from entering. And the trees, although still offering homes to robins, blue jays, cardinals and squirrels, no longer seem to shelter the scores of cheerful little sparrows they once did.  


They must live around shopping centers these days as I still see them congregating in parking lots and other public gathering places, scavenging crumbs left behind by thoughtless customers and careless patrons.

Sparrow decline has also been noted across Europe, most notably in Britain. Once considered a nuisance bird their numbers fell so precipitously in the 90s that scientists launched a study. They think the cause might be a parasite that causes avian malaria. Although researchers agree that this particular parasite has been around and effecting house sparrows forever their hypothesis for the recent increase in mortality is…climate change, of course. If it were me I would probably look closer at an increase in the number of parasites suddenly appearing on scene. But that’s just me.

Who will love a little Sparrow
Who's traveled far and cries for rest?
“Not I,” said the Oak Tree
“I won't share my branches with no sparrow's nest
And my blanket of leaves won't warm her cold breast”

Who will love a little Sparrow
And who will speak a kindly word?
“Not I,” said the Swan
“The entire idea is utterly absurd
I'd be laughed at and scorned if the other Swans heard”

And who will take pity in his heart
And who will feed a starving Sparrow?
“Not I,” said the Golden Wheat
“I would if I could, but I cannot, I know
I need all my grain to prosper and grow”

Who will love a little Sparrow?
Will no one write her eulogy?
“I will,” said the Earth
“For all I've created returns unto me
From dust were ye made and dust ye shall be”

Monday, July 27, 2020

P.S. Masks Don’t Work

Hmmm, I wonder what could possibly be going on in Oregon with respect to this spike in COVID cases?


And Washington?


Don’t you dare suggest that the spread is due to peaceful protests and riots. They’re all wearing masks.

Wall of Moms' Shields Portland Rioters From Federal Officers - The ...Just look at that masked up Wall of Mothers

Once you brush all the superfluous details away what strikes me most about the  current spate of riots/not riots occurring in our cities is the fact that our police are behaving just like Europe’s gendarmes have been for years – almost decades -  now.

France Will Ban `Risky' Protests After Champs-Elysees Riots ...

Which is to say they’re just there to make sure the fires don’t get too big.  If they were allowed to do anything truly effective the riots would have stopped years ago. America: don’t be like Europe. We’re better than that…if we actually follow our Constitution.


P.S. Two things: 1. If we can reopen for rioting we can reopen for commerce, and 2. Masks don’t work.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Ann Arbor’s Cancel Culture

We wandered into the belly of the beast yesterday by accident. Arbor Art Fair | The Jewish NewsA2 Art Fair 2020 Cancelled Due To Cooties – performance artist at last year’s fair

Not the Ann Arbor Art Fair - of course it was cancelled this year, for your safety. So we headed out for an Indian restaurant on Main Street thinking lunch in the Peoples Republic of Ann Arbor would be safe. We were unaware that there was a planned protest in front of the Federal Building in the near proximity. Nor were we aware of the fact that Main Street – like Main Streets everywhere this year – was closed to traffic in order for restaurants to expand their outdoor seating into the city’s main thoroughfare. When we met with the barricades closing Main we turned left on Washington and saw a crowd gathering with signs one block down, effectively closing Washington to traffic as well; progressives really know how to screw up a town.

Against all odds we lucked upon a parking spot right around the corner so we parked and went on our way, leaving what turned out to be the gathering of the latest of an ongoing series of BLM/police brutality protests in AA. Yesterday’s event specifically targeted the use of federal agents in our-of-control cities. But you see, that’s what happens when they cancel the Ann Arbor Arts Festival: performance artists gotta perform somewhere.

Activist Ethan Lucas sets a timer on his phone as protesters kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds at the intersection of Liberty and Division streets in Ann Arbor in protest of arrests by federal agents in Portland, Oregon on Saturday, July 25, 2020.Activist Ethan Lucas sets a timer on his phone and lies in the street as other protesters kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds at the intersection of Liberty and Division streets in Ann Arbor

As these events tend to go in college towns it was mostly populated by privileged young white folk, mostly chicks,

Protesters kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds at the intersection of Liberty and Division streets in Ann Arbor in protest of arrests by federal agents in Portland, Oregon on Saturday, July 25, 2020.Photo MLIVE

and privileged old white folk, also mostly chicks.

Protesters hold signs outside the Federal Building, 200 E. Liberty St. in Ann Arbor during a rally in protest of arrests by federal agents in Portland, Oregon on Saturday, July 25, 2020.Photo MLIVE

A recap of the protest according to MLIVE:

Protesters and politicians gathered around the federal building in Ann Arbor on Saturday to protest against police brutality and federal agents coming to Michigan.

About 200 people [Ed. A generous estimate, and half of them were politicians, Michigan’s primary election  being just a few weeks away] showed up to the building at 200 E. Liberty St. to rally against unidentified [Ed. If by “unidentified” you mean uniformed federal agents wearing the insignia of their respective agencies] federal agents being sent to Michigan and to call for police reform. The rally was proceeded by a march through downtown.

Protesters kneel for 8 minutes and 46 seconds at the intersection of Liberty and Division streets in Ann Arbor in protest of arrests by federal agents in Portland, Oregon on Saturday, July 25, 2020. A generous crowd estimate of 200 – enough to close an intersection if they social distance properly

Local police participated as well:

“A chant of ‘defund the police’ means we want to challenge the status quo. That is OK,” said Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton. “If at the end of the day, we ended up shifting funds somewhere else to help people that have been discriminated in the past, underserved in the past and marginalized in the past, I do not have a problem with that.”

You’ll be stunned to hear that Sheriff Jerry Clayton is running for re-election and is on the August 4th primary ballot.

We enjoyed our Korma, Curry and Naan from our premier window seat table inside the air conditioned Shalimar. For entertainment we watched the passing scene on the other side of the glass; there was the young couple eating at a table in the shade who respectfully replaced their face masks whenever they weren’t eating their samosas or nibbling on their naan. And the dutiful baby daddies (I hesitate to call them husbands because who knows these days) pushing little children in strollers with their face masks perched he-manly and jauntily below their noses. A full 99% of the people marching up and down the makeshift Main-Street-turned-food-court in the 88 degree temperature strapped in behind a mask. A true marvel of human evolution and effective agitprop.

“We’ve experienced large crowds downtown since the street closures began June 12,” Taylor said in a statement. “Although we’re delighted people are enjoying themselves, we’re also discouraged that some folks choose not to wear a mask when walking around downtown…

City officials said they will further emphasize Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s mask-wearing order that went into effect Monday, July 13, which requires individuals to wear masks at all times indoors and outdoors in large gatherings.

Without compliance, Ann Arbor will cancel the street closures because of the public health risk. – MLIVE

In other words they’re only happy as long as you comply with the State’s mandates, no matter what they be.

I think I’ll cancel Ann Arbor before they cancel me.

5 ways to get your kids to wear face coverings - CNNAs usual it’s the children who will suffer most

Me thinks Ann Arbor doth protest too much.