All right, that's fair. Like working in a meat packing plant, it's not really the kind of work you want to do, except that truck driving pays a hell of a lot more because illegal aliens can't do it. But if I had a dollar for every ad I've had to reject because it said "forklift certification a must" I think I could retire.
...it's not as if driving a forklift requires an advanced degree in nuclear physics, you know. I could probably learn how to drive one in an afternoon, if it took me even that log; but the job market is so shitty, employers can afford to be extremely picky about who they hire, and if they have a choice between candidate A, who has all the pieces of paper already in place, and candidate B, who can do nearly everything candidate A can but will require a few hours' training--well, that's not a hard choice to make, is it? And you can't even blame them for it.
Except that it really sucks to be candidate B. Ask me how I know. *sigh*
Related: The real unemployment rate is 23.3%.
During the Bush years, when official unemployment, U3, was below 5%, the media and leftist mouthpieces all screamed the same thing: "Those new jobs are low-quality jobs! They're burger-flippers and part-timers, and the real unemployment figure is closer to 8%!" They claimed that U6 was a "more accurate" description of the job market in the United States...under a Republican President.
Now, of course, Obamacare is prompting employers to create part-time positions--exactly as we opponents of Obamacare predicted, I might add!--rather than full-time positions...and the press is totally silent on the issue. They blithely go right ahead and report U3 as being the official, real employment figure, without any cavailing or kvetching about how the government is trying to lie and make things look better than they really are.
Karl Denninger points out that the table does not say what the government claims it says. He concludes, "Are we living in a fantasy land where the so-called economic "numbers" are simply printed as whatever some wonk in Washington DC wants to see on a given day?" (Emphasis removed.)
I would say the answer to that question is yes, and it has been "yes" since January 20, 2009, aided and abetted by a press friendly to the sitting President.
* * *
Someday, they'll be able to print body parts. This is a 3D printed cyborg ear that can only ever live in a vat, but as "proof of concept" it demonstrates what can be done rather nicely. As the article points out, once they've figured out how to include blood vessels, nerves, and skin, we just might be able to do away with prostheses for a lot of body parts.
Imagine if treating a burn victim required only that he be sedated long enough for the hospital to culture cells that his immune system would not reject. Then they'd remove all the burned tissue and 3D print new tissue right onto his body--no scars, no skin grafts (at least the conventional kind) and a vastly reduced recovery period. Wouldn't that be something?
* * *
I doubt it, considering that the sun's magnetic field flips every eleven years. The headline of this article breathlessly asks, "The flipping sun to cause unprecedented catastrophe?"
I'm more worried about the flipping Democrats than I am about the flipping sun.
* * *
President Gaffe-O-Tron continues to be protected by a friendly press.
Check out what he said on the Daily Show:
The odds of dying in a terrorist attack are a lot lower than they are of dying in a car accident, unfortunately."Unfortunately?" Seriously?
AP protects him from his claim that Charlotte, South Carolina, is a city on the Gulf of Mexico.
But of course any Republican who makes a verbal goof is unfit to be President of these fifty-seven United States, don'tcha know.
* * *
Well, shazam: other countries report statistics differently. This is a major Fungus bugaboo, because the left likes to cite inaccurate statistics to bolster their positions.
The lie: infant mortality is much higher in the United States than it is in Britain, which is why the US needs socialized medicine. Obviously the socialized medical system leads to lower infant mortality!
The truth: because Britain doesn't consider a living child born before 22 weeks an "infant", the child is not cared for and allowed to expire. When that child dies, it's considered a "miscarriage". Also, in Britain, any child that dies within three days of its birth is not counted as a dead infant. In the US baby is baby is baby, so any "planned and wanted child" that dies is counted as a dead infant. This makes the US' infant mortality statistics look horrendous compared to those of Britain.
The lie: the US has a murder rate that's immensely greater than other industrialized nations. Britain disallows the private owenership of firearms, and their murder rate is much lower! This is why the US should ban guns, like Britain!
In the US, the count of people murdered kept by the FBI is pretty darned straightforward. Got a body, not natural causes, not suicide? Must be murder of one sort or another. Count it.From the material Vox Day blockquoted.
So, if you ask the FBI, they will tell you that for 2011 there were 14,022 murders or non-negligent manslaughters. On the same line of that chart, they tell us the population was 292,364,075 which gives us a "murder" rate of 4.8 per 100,000 population. Those counts are based on crimes reported by local police agencies. They say nothing about the clearance rate, nor if anyone was ever identified or charged or convicted or whatever. Body, not natural, not negligent, homicide. Duh.
Vox Day's blockquote finishes:
"Since 1967, homicide figures for England and Wales have been adjusted to exclude any cases which do not result in conviction"Yeah. I do believe that if the United States limited its murder statistics to counting only murder cases which resulted in a conviction, our number would be much lower than Britain's is.
OOOoooooops. We're not comparing apples to apples, we're comparing apples to meatloaf."
* * *
Alan Caruba believes that the Obama administration is following the Nixon template. I would love to agree with him, and look forward to the inevitable impeachment proceedings, but there are a few problems with his scenario.
1) The press hated Nixon.
They hated Nixon. He was a Republican, and worse, he was the guy that brought down Alger Hiss. The press aggressively investigates and reports on people they don't like, but they do their best to shield people they like from any criticism whatsoever. (See the link about AP giving Obama's latest gaffe a pass.)
2) Alger Hiss.
The press doesn't hate Obama. They hated--hated--Richard Nixon because he was the guy who got Alger Hiss, the communist spy who was highly trusted by Harry Truman. The left has never forgiven Richard Nixon for nailing a communist spy and cutting off the flow of secrets to the USSR. Alger Hiss was probably the best intelligence asset the USSR had in the United States ever, because he was so highly connected and had held positions of trust within the US government. Besides, Nixon worked for McCarthy during the HUAC days.
3) Obama is a Democrat.
Obama has a little (d) after his name. That makes all the difference; Robert Byrd was a former klansman yet you never heard the press say one word about his racist past. Trent Lott said something obliquely complimentary about Byrd's racist past and the press railroaded him right out of office, but the guy who'd actually been in the KKK remained in office until the day he died.
4) The GOP has no spine.
Congress in 1974 was run by the Democrat party. Senate, House, lock, stock, and barrel, the entire legislature was a Democrat fiefdom. If the articles of impeachment came up in the House, Nixon would have been impeached--the GOP could not stop it--and if the vote to convict had been held in the Senate, Nixon would have been removed from office. Full stop.
Contrast that to today: the GOP has a bare majority in the House and the Democrats control the Senate. Even if the House voted to impeach Obama--and they will not--the Democrat-run Senate would acquit the President, becuse he's their boy.
The House won't vote to impeach Obama because the last time a GOP-controlled House of Representatives voted to impeach a Democrat--Clinton--it was a PR disaster for them.
Furthermore, the press would report that the vote proceeded along party lines, with the strong subtext that the GOP was doing it out of racism (rather than any worry over the rule of law) and that the Democrats were standing up for democracy and racial equality.
That's four reasons, off the top of my head, why Obama is not going to be impeached, but the thing that ties them all together is that the press doesn't want to see Obama fail and therefore they won't pursue any of Obama's scandals as aggressively as they would if he were a Republican.
Absent Woodward and Bernstein--and their ilk--would Watergate be the de facto standard for Presidential scandals now? Somehow I doubt it. If the press had not aggressively pursued the story--if Nixon had had just one of the legislative houses on his side--history would look very different.
But it won't come to that now, not even if the GOP pulls a miracle from an unlikely orofice and regains control of both houses. It won't, because the GOP doesn't mind Obama's actions. The GOP leadership is fine with it; they're more interested in wresting control of the federal machine from Democrats. If the GOP is running the machine, why, all the spending and waste and attendant nonsense, why, that's just fine.
Highly similar, in fact, to the way the Democrat party was composed of nothing but deficit hawks from 1981 through 1993...but as soon as Bill Clinton took power, why, suddenly the deficit was good and had to be bigger!
They're all skunks, and none of them cares about the proles out there in flyover country.
* * *
So, my old friend from high school--who now lives in Alabama--sent me the video card from his computer.
He's blind, and uses a screen reader, but when he bought this machine it turned out that the screen reader was incompatible with the video card in the machine. A tech-savvy friend of his realized that the video card was the problem, so he got another one to replace this one, and it worked fine. But that left my friend with a spare video card, and not being a techie type it was just rattling around his house.
So he--having read about my video card woes in past Fungus posts--offered it to me. I said, "Sure, I'll see what I can do with it!" and he sent it on. It arrived yesterday.
...and it turned out to be two video cards connected with a bridge. High-end video cards can be bridged together so that the two cards effectively function as one. It depends on several factors but this setup lets you run four displays if you so desire, and it makes sure each card knows what the other is up to. Also, there's a significant performance advantage.
I don't think my system has two 16x PCIE slots in it, so this configuration is probably not going to do me any good. But I am going to take one of the cards, plug it in, and see if it's any faster than the card that's in there now, the Radeon HD 6670. These cards are vintage 2009, but so was the Radeon HD4850 that the HD6670 replaced, and the HD6670 doesn't appear any faster than the HD4850.
So, then, the other day I was chatting with Og about him getting memory for his computer, the one he wants to run Win 7 on. Win 7 is pure 64 bit, and requires a good chunk of RAM; Og's machine had 2 GB in it and would periodically hang for a few minutes. Then it would soldier on normally, until the next time.
"Sounds like it's hitting virtual memory pretty hard," I said after he'd told me all the salient details, including Win 7's minimum required 6 GB RAM. It seems to hang while it goes all-out on drive I/O; even though the hidden parts of the OS are actually churning along normally, the bits that are responsible for screen redraws and such are temporarily suspended. So, obviously, additional memory is required, right?
Then I realized something: because video RAM on the video card counts as "memory space", and because a 32 bit OS like the one on my system can only access 4 GB all told, my system is incapable of getting everything possible out of a high-zoot video card.
Og and I were talking about memory, and I was talking about how I usually go with Crucial.com because even though they cost more, it just works and RAM problems are the most damningly difficult hardware failures to diagnose. And then I said, "This system can handle 8 GB" and "I only upgraded this system to 2.5 GB because a 32-bit OS can only access 4 GB and the video card was half a gig" and then it hit me.
With a 4 GB memory space, the RAM is 2.5 GB and the half-gig video card makes a total of 3.0 GB of memory, all told. That means I can really only add another GB of RAM before I'm wasting money.
The 2 GB video card puts me over that limit. 2.5 + 2.0 = 4.5, and that means I'm either losing RAM to the video card, or losing VRAM because Windows wants as much RAM as it can get. I don't know which, but either way sucks.
What I do know is that either way my system is not going to perform as well as it could, and I now want a 64 bit OS more than ever. I want to bump it to 8 GB RAM and upgrade the OS to Win 7.
Also, I want a flying monkey to bring me Saturday's winning Powerball ticket. I don't want much, do I?