June 7th, 2011

#2734: ObamaNomics

A lot of people out there no doubt think I can't give credit where credit is due, that I automatically default to "Democrats and Obama always lie". Well, there are three stories today which come from the Obama administration and which are true.

Obama sez there's no fear of a double-dip recession. Of course not! Why would he be afraid of it? It's not like he's ever going to have to worry about being able to buy food!

Obama aide sez this isn't a "jobless recovery". Also true! Because it's not a recovery.

Former Obama official sez we're still in a recovery. True! The economy is better--by degree--than it was at its nadir in 2009, and most of the trends are positive, however slightly. (Including unemployment and public debt!)

The American people are finally giving credit where credit is due, too. The American public is coming to acknowledge the efforts of the Obama administration.


* * *

So it turns out all those ObamaCare waivers are, after all, illegal because the ObamaCare law does not grant HHS the power to issue said waivers. It grants all kinds of other waiver powers but not that one.

"So what's the big deal?" You ask. "Rule of law" is the big deal. Part of the governmental philosophy of the United States is that no one is above the law--even government--and if there is occasion for law to be violated, there is a strict procedure which must be followed, else those responsible must be arrested and tried.

Since the Obama administration doesn't give a rat's ass about rule of law, these waivers won't go away--but there'll be lawsuits and other actions, and perhaps a few years down the line we'll get a President who actually believes in rule of law...and then the screaming will begin.


* * *

As for me, I had decided to get a haircut today. It's only 3 and I could still make it, I suppose.

It's 98 friggin' degrees outside. Who authorized that? It's June. ...but Thursday the projected high is 22 degrees cooler, so it's not supposed to last, and I'm betting on there being some massive storms. Heh.

And, by the way, that reminded me of something I thought of the other day: we're repeatedly told that global warming is going to cause huge storms of unprecedented fury and everyone's going to die, blah blah blah, etcetera.

When do you see severe weather? You don't see it when things are getting warm. The weather over the past three days has been quiet, and today it's incredibly hot compared with Sunday evening. (I mean, it's like 30-odd degrees warmer now.) But when is the severe weather predicted? When it cools off Thursday.

The case can be made that we'll see violent weather as the Earth cools, not warms. A storm is a heat engine and you can't have a heat engine without a temperature differential; that's intrinsic to the laws of thermodynamics. (Not that climatologists give a rat's ass about the laws of thermodynamics, of course, but still.)

Just something to think about.

Another thing to think about: in the late 1980s we were told that the ozone layer was going away. So now it's 2011, about 25 years later, and...there's been no change.

The ecofreaks will tell you that the ozone hole is still there, but it's not: it closes every year. It's an annual phenomenon--in fact, let's just trot out all the facts about the ozone hole right now, since it's been a while:
It was discovered in 1956
The magnitude of depletion in 1956 was to 110 dobson units
This is approximately equivalent to recent measurements of the "hole"
It recovers every year to the typical mean value of 300 dobson units
It's done this every year since 1956
1956 was before CFCs were in widespread use
That's pretty much everything you need to know about the ozone hole, right there.

By this time we were supposed to all need to slather ourselves with latex paint to avoid skin cancer (example: Robocop contained an ad for some sunblock with an arbitrarily high SPF) and Earth's ecosystem was going to be endangered.

Instead: there is nothing wrong.

...lest you think "the CFC ban worked!" the econazis are still saying that the ozone hole is expanding, that it's getting worse, and that "it will be years before the damage is undone."

What I like best about this is how selectively unstable the CFC molecules are. They're so unstable that they break apart and release chlorine radicals which destroy ozone--but they're so stable that they hang around in the atmosphere for decades.

I especially like how the chlorine ions can't possibly combine with anything other than ozone molecules. Do you know how reactive chlorine is? Chlorine combines with water to make hydrochloric acid. It does this so well that a whiff of chlorine gas will kill you pretty frickin' quickly, by acid damage to your lungs if nothing else. (Fluorine is the same way, incidentally, but it makes hydrofluoric acid instead of hydrochloric acid. HF is a much stronger acid than HCl.)

They'd do better to argue that CFCs cause acid rain, for crying out loud; at least that pays attention to basic frickin' chemistry. Shit.

* * *

Anyway, if I want a haircut, I have to do certain things like leave the house and go get money and drive to SuperCuts. Off I go!

#2735: Cuts

I got my hair cut and the grass cut.

...I had to wait a bit at SuperCuts; anticipating this, I'd brought with me Clarke's Fountains of Paradise which I have not read before. So that was fine. The stylist gave me approximately the same haircut I got last time--extra short with just enough on top to comb--and it feels marvelously cooler than the hippie shag I had developed.

I stopped at Taco Bell on the way home for a taco salad; I played some WoW and ate it, then shut down the machine, went outside, and cut the grass. I hammered on the patio a bit more, then came inside and read more of my book; after I'd cooled down, I decided to go visit my aunt and uncle and see how they were doing.

So I just got back from a nice visit with them. It's turned into a very pleasant summer evening--a bit sticky, but very nice--and if my legs didn't still hurt from the exercise I've gotten over the past few days (breaking concrete and my walk in the woods) I'd probably go for a walk right now.

On the way to SuperCuts, I stopped at the church and dropped off a registration form for a bible study group that meets on Tuesday nights. It's a good opportunity for me to socialize with people in a structured and nonthreatening environment, and joining such a group is something that has been occurring to me, on and off, since I moved back here in 2003. It costs nothing but some time, and it ought to be really good for me in a variety of ways.

So: overall, a positive 1-week anniversary of my release from Tinley. My mood has been well below a 5 today, which is awesome.

* * *

If I hadn't been bound and determined to get my hair cut, I would have taken Og's suggestion (sent in an e-mail) to hie myself to Harbor Freight and get the motorcycle carrier. They had a web coupon for 20% off any single item, which would have knocked the thing down to about $110, but I decided A) there will be another sale soon, and B) I really wanted that haircut.

Oh well.

* * *

I'm starting to think I ought to change the oil in the Jeep. The oil pressure was very low again today (because of the heat) and I'm starting to wonder if I actually put the right weight oil in there. (10-w40 instead of 10-w30? I've never figured out how multirange oils work.)

Or maybe it needs an auxiliary oil cooler. The underhood temperatures in that thing are stratospheric even when it's cool outside. I suspect I could have fried an egg on the hood this afternoon after I got home from the haircut.

Of course, the lack of a fan shroud probably does not help. Longtime readers will remember that the fan shroud--obtained from a boneyard in the spring of 2010--broke into about a thousand pieces when I was replacing the Jeep's radiator in December.

...wow, I just realized that I replaced that radiator a scant two weeks before Mom died.

Anyway, the coolant temp went north of 210° (the middle mark on the temp gauge) but remained within 10% of it, so that was all right. The oil pressure recovered (slo-o-o-o-o-wly) the way it did on my trips home from Rantoul on warm days, so there was no problem there.

When I left to go to my aunt and uncle's house, the temp gauge was still registering a hot engine--about halfway between "cold" and the 210° mark, which is where it normally operates when the local weather isn't set on "Philippines"--but that's not surprising considering that the Jeep's engine is about 500 lbs of cast iron.

* * *

Anyway, now I'm going to go geek out for a while.