atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#1961: Obama got what he wanted today.

Obama's saying a "bipartisan" bill is probably not going to happen. The press, of course, will uncritically report that and pile on the Republicans.

But the Democrats have not--from day one--been interested whatsoever in any input from the Republicans. "Bipartisan", when a Democrat says it, means "the Republicans shut up and vote for whatever we bring to the floor." It does not mean "both parties have input into the particulars and a compromise is reached which both parties can live with." Democrats don't do that; their way or the highway.

Obama expected the Republicans to take the highway; and the pro-Democrat press will champion the Democrat position without so much as mentioning that the Democrats have been the ones who refuse to listen to ideas from the other party.

The end result will be that the Democrats pass some asinine sweeping "reform" of the health care system, something intrusive which is guaranteed to raise costs and reduce both coverage and competition. They will pass it using whatever methods they need to use, and whatever gets out of Congress will be signed into law by Obama just as quickly as a signing ceremony can be put together.

Harry Reid says reconciliation isn't in the plans, but the Democrats have as much as promised to use it.

"Reconciliation is happening. Enjoy."

Ann Coulter: "What part of 'Party of No' don't you understand?"
...both the House and the Senate have already passed national health care bills. Either body could vote for the other's bill, and – presto! – Obama would have a national health-care bill, replete with death panels, abortion coverage and lots and lots of new government commissions!
Well put.

* * *

"Meanwhile, in Great Britain," socialized medicine is doing what it always does: reduce standards of care, reduce levels of care, make more people sick and kill more people.

And ObamaCare will bring that wondrous standard of care to the United States.

* * *

At least someone in the government has finally admitted that the attack on Fort Hood was an islamic terror attack. At least we've got that straightened out.

* * *

More "dark matter" nonsense here.

...the "dark matter" detector they describe in this article sounds remarkably like a neutrino detector. What's the difference?

* * *

We'll need to start cleaning up after ourselves if we want to continue to launch stuff safely. There's an awful lot of junk orbiting the Earth right now.

* * *

False advertising is wrong, but who cares about whether or not the cars have side airbags?

Look: the issue here is that the cars are presented as having side air bags, when in fact they do not. That's false advertising, which is a crime.

The article makes it sound as if the various corporations are perpetrating some dastardly, evil scheme to foist infernal deathtraps on an unsuspecting public. There is nothing wrong with the cars being sold without side air bags, however, as long as the buyer knows the car doesn't have them and doesn't buy the car with the expectation that the car does have them.

* * *

People are starting to wonder if China's recent sale of treasuries is a warning shot to the US. Welcome aboard, folks. I figured this out when I first heard about it; what took you so long?

But the economists "expect" China to continue to buy US debt. "Where else can they go?" These are the same economists, one would wager, who are continuously surprised by the economic and employment statistics every month.

* * *

Greece puts its foot in its mouth. Greece needs help from Germany if it wants to get out of its current debt crisis, yet:
Theodoros Pangalos, deputy prime minister, said Germany had no right to reproach Greece for anything after it devastated the country under the Nazi occupation, which left 300,000 dead. "They took away the gold that was in the Bank of Greece, and they never gave it back. They shouldn't complain so much about stealing and not being very specific about economic dealings," he told the BBC.

Twisting the knife further, he said the current crop of EU leaders were of "very poor quality" and had botched this month's crisis summit in Brussels. "The people who are managing the fortunes of Europe were not up to the task," he said.

One banker said the situation was surreal. "How can they call the Germans incompetent Nazis and still expect a bail-out?"
Germany is one of the big European nations which forms the foundation for the EU. When you're a small European nation who needs help from one of the biggies, pissing off Germany is kind of like pissing off California, Texas, and New York when you're running for President of the US.

So we now have two potential avenues for a world-wide currency crash. China could engage in a massive sell-off of US treasuries, thus tanking the dollar (and the rest of the world economy would go with it); or the EU could royally stuff their debt situation, thus tanking the Euro (and the rest of the world economy would go with it).

Wait, three: because Japan is teetering on the same brink as the US and the EU. They're all interconnected; everyone has holdings in everyone else and no one has sufficient holdings in hard commodities to back their debt.

* * *

Victor Davis Hanson has a good discussion of why Obama is suddenly talking about "bipartisanship" only a little more than a year after he dismissed Republicans with a stony, "I won."

* * *

The economy is in a decline. The person who wrote this article on the worst ten job sectors in the US economy seems to have missed that memo, though:
People in almost every profession may feel like jobs are scarce right now. For many industries, this is a temporary situation. But jobs in some fields are expected to continue disappearing even after the economy picks up.
"May feel like"? With six people for every job opening? It's a bit beyond "feeling" and into "WTF is this shit?"

*sigh*

* * *

Here's an article on that fuel cell generator which a Silicon Valley startup hopes to manufacture.

The photograph accompanying the headline incorporates a rainbow and a unicorn. How appropriate.

...and then the first comment--the very first comment--displays a startling ignorance of the laws of physics:
Fuel cell is NOT constrained by thermodynamic limits. But still limited by efficiency of chemical processes - which is higher than the limit from the Carnot cycle.

Matt - I hope by now you realize your mistake comparing solar efficiency to Bloom. Solar is not limited by the 2nd laws of thermodynamics. But as we all know it has its own gaggle of benefits and problems.
Edited, and emphasis added.

THE HELL IT'S NOT.

A fuel cell is most assuredly "constrained" by the laws of thermodynamics, and solar panels are also "limited" by all the laws of thermodynamics.

...and his idiocy about the efficiency of chemical processes versus the Carnot cycle--any thermodynamic process is a Carnot cycle, and that includes chemical processes.

If you're reacting chemicals to make electricity, that is a Carnot cycle. If you're burning gasoline in a piston engine, or kerosene in a jet, or propellant in a rocket engine, those are Carnot cycles. If you're pedaling a bicycle, if your hampster is running in his wheel--any time work is performed it's a Carnot cycle.

("Work" in the physics sense, force over distance.)

Geeze louise that guy's an idiot.
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