March 24th, 2017

#5503: South Africa 2017 = Zimbabwe circa 1985

So, it looks as if South Africa is going to go the way of Zimbabwe.
Sober minded people made the point that eventually, the blacks would do what they have always done and murder all the whites. It was a process that was well underway in the former Rhodesia. The white farmers were being harassed, having their lands seized and in some cases getting killed for being white. But, the good thinkers in the West claimed it was exaggerated and anyway, Nelson Mandela was black Jesus so nothing but good would come from the end of Apartheid.
"Black Jesus" liked to "necklace" people--put a tire filled with gasoline around their necks and set it alight--and was in jail at least in part because of the political violence he'd committed.

And yeah, in twenty years, South Africa is going to look like Zimbabwe.

* * *

Another example of the complete bankruptcy of socialism: Venezuela! They're sitting on one of the biggest known deposits of crude oil in the world. I suppose that Chavez et al thought that the price of oil would never fall under $80 a barrel; with OPEC in charge and the US stupidly not producing any significant amount of oil, socialism could be financed entirely with petrodollars ad infinitum. After all, all the experts were saying that the price of oil could only go up because Peak Oil, blah blah blah, etcetera. But then, fracking, and an economic depression. It's difficult to keep the price of oil up when the supply increases at the same time demand drops.

Venezuelan socialism was doomed, anyway; it can't be otherwise. But the instant Chavez started to nationalize things, that was the beginning of the end.

...you know, I just don't have the fortitude to say the same thing over and over and over again. Socialism doesn't work. It can't work, not for long. It's contrary to human nature, and human nature is not malleable enough that it can ever be made to work. It's for insects, not humans.

* * *

John McCain? Really? I am starting to think that when McCain lost the 2008 election he did us a favor. Sure, we got President Jughead for eight years, but every time that guy shows up in the news it only further convinces me that he would have been a terrible President.

McCain was always the Republican that the press liked, precisely because he was always speaking out against the GOP. Now he's doing it again.

...and no, it wouldn't surprise me.

McCain being awful is pretty much part and parcel of the general awfulness of candidates we've seen from our political parties over the past twenty years. Bob Dole in '96, Bush in '00, McCain in '08 and Romney in '12--and the Democrats no better. Clinton, Gore, Kerry, Jugears, and Hillary Clinton? These are the best that our parties have to offer?

I'd like to think that this is a more recent phenomenon, that Presidents only started sucking after the 1980s. But Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, and Gerald Ford weren't prizes, either. And Carter--holy shit. Kennedy would probably have been considered a crummy President if he hadn't been assassinated. (His poll numbers certainly weren't good; he was in Dallas to improve them!) How far back do we have to go to find a decent President? Eisenhower? Truman? Roosevelt? All of them had serious things wrong with them. The entire 20th century was a crapfest of dickhead Presidents, starting with Woodrow Wilson. Was Theodore Roosevelt the last time we had a good President before Ronald Reagan? And how good was Reagan, anyway? He consistently scores well in polls of recent Presidents, but look at the competition!

Jury's out on Trump. Trump is making the right noises but the proof of the pudding etc. We won't know how good Trump actually is until 2024 at the earliest.

But McCain--

Look, Obama was an awful President. He was as bad as Jimmy Carter, if not worse, but look at the alternatives.

1) Hillary Clinton. Hillary Clinton did not improve with age, but a Hillary presidency in 2008 would have been disastrous for the country, about as disastrous as it would have been had she won in 2016. She was the odds-on favorite to win the nomination in 2008, but for Obama.

2) John McCain. I backed him because I was still in "back the nominee!" mode, before I realized that the GOP was not serious in its opposition to Democrats. But he was a lousy candidate. Sarah Palin was the best thing about his campaign, and she was the only person in the contest with executive experience.

From here, it looks like McCain would have been a disastrous President, on par with Jughead...and the Greater Depression would be laid squarely at his feet, ensuring Democrat rule for some time to come.

I'll have to think about this.

* * *

Meanwhile, trying to find info from Fungus posts from 2008 on the election, I came across this phrase, and liked it: "The best image is the picture of the steering column, laying on the pavement, its airbag deployed like a forlorn semaphore of defeat[.]" Guy with Acura NSX got into a street race against a Honda Civic with a "Tuned by Reese" sticker in its back window. I gathered that the Civic was not actually "Tuned by Reese".

Luckily, no one was killed in this staggering display of poor judgement.

* * *

I suppose the same thing could be said about this blog.

#5504: 80°

Yep, nice warm day today. Went out to the garage and hauled all the scrap steel to the scrapyard. 140 lbs' worth; netted me $13 and change. So much for my go-karty aspirations, but that steel has been sitting there untouched for much more than a year, and I'm not likely to be doing anything in that department before next year at the earliest. So, dump it.

Still need to crush the cans and take them; I'll do that next week, along with getting the electronics recycled and the donation pile hauled over to Salvation Army. That will make much space.

Other thing I want to do: take certain items from here (like the dorm fridge, the room AC I never use, and some other bits and pieces) and put them in the storage unit, then haul the two TVs at Dad's house to the recycler. Probably end up doing that before I recycle the electronics that need to be gotten rid of, so I can haul it all in one big go.

Got to get rid of the junk! Soonest! I'll need to be able to access the lawn mower at this rate.

* * *

Poor little rich girl just can't catch a break. We're talking about Chelsea Clinton!
She gets $600,000 from NBC to do a couple of almost-unairable puff pieces.

And then she gets "Impact" awards for having successfully managed to be born.

But poor her anyway.

...

By the way, Chelsea Clinton's big job today was tweeting out this story, which, coincidentally, also appears in the LA Times that just puff-pieced her lame ass, and which claims that global warming will cause greater (wait for it....) diabetes.
OH DICK NOT THAT GLOBAL WARMING DIABETES WE ARE ALL DOOOMED

*rolleyes*

The left--or some portion of it--has identified Chelsea Clinton as its next great white hope, apparently because "Clinton". As far as I can tell there is absolutely no other distinguishing thing about her; if she were not the (alleged) offspring of Bill and Hillary, all else being equal she'd be a nobody.

It's a spectacularly bad way to pick potential nominees: "Hey, this person has the same last name as the most successful person we've had in the White House in fifty years. Let's elect her next!"

...but it's all they've got. Have you looked at the major players in the Democrat party lately? They're all older 'n dirt, and have the curb appeal of a burning tire. From here there's no obvious leader for the Democrats, no one who's going to get the base stirred up, especially since they managed to fob off old Bernie (who, himself, came of majority sometime in the Jurassic era and is an avowed socialist to boot). Chelsea Clinton has the advantage of being young and sort of cute, even if we do know exactly how she's going to look as she ages. (Hint: her mom.)



(That's from the 2008 election, but that's okay. Still applies.)

* * *

So, Cosmopolitan has another thing for the feminists to worry about. Feminists hate the fact that sex is fun, which is why they do everything possible to take all the joy and beauty out of it. The latest salvo in that war is being unhappy that men derive pleasure from making their women feel good, because "it's all about his ego".

It's a whole bunch of horseshit, of course, because it's Cosmopolitan.

* * *

John Deere is making the mistake of thinking that they can lock down their stuff and people will still buy it. Okay, locking down your tractors with digital rights management (DRM) is going to keep people from using cheap Chinese knock-off parts, but it's also going to piss off a lot of people who are depending on their equipment and then find they need to pay some schmuck $160 an hour to drive out to their farm with a laptop to reset a single code.

It really is a shitty way to do business. Loyalty is a two-way street, and no one stays in business for long when they treat their customers like criminals. Or cash cows to be milked.

* * *

Mrs. Fungus bought a DVD of Sweeny Todd performed as a concert, and Neil Patrick Harris was in it. Apparently he was in the original production, and he reprised his role in this one as Tobias. Who knew Doogie Howser could sing?

...so now we've seen the thing five times in various forms and I absolutely cannot get the music out of my head. WTF.

With the result that I got pot pies for dinner tonight and told my wife we were having "the worst pies in London". Maybe with a salad.