atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#3465: Can you believe it's Friday now? I can't.

Seems like this week evaporated. Then again, I spent Thursday in a coma.

* * *

Mitch McConnell doesn't understand the skepticism of Republican voters. "Boy," says McConnell, "I don’t know how they could be suspicious on this issue."

Oh? Have you tried counting all the times the GOP has exactly failed to stand in the way of the encroachment of government?

The base is skeptical because you morons have given us reason after reason to be skeptical. The most recent one alone is enough: you guys didn't stand up to Obama and the Democrats at all when push came to shove and it was time to do something about the deficit. Being afraid of being called meany mean-heads by the press and the Democrats (but I repeat myself) you gave them everything they wanted and then tried to tell us that $100 billion over ten years was a significant budget cut.

When the annual deficit is $1,300 billion.

But there are others--Bush's education bill, which was the largest expansion in federal education spending since Carter created the Department of Education. The GOP's flat refusal to hold the Democrats' feet to the fire on any budgetary issue. The near-total lack of effort in countering the stupidity that is Obama's energy policy.

If we had seen you guys fighting tooth and nail to slow down the spending, if we'd seen you showing any interest whatsoever in reining in the expansion of government, if you had just tried to hold these people accountable for their roles in turning the economy into a shitpot--but you've done none of that.

The cry of "We're gonna repeal ObamaCare!" sounds suspiciously like the cries of "we're gonna cut the deficit!" we were hearing in 2010. Is there any wonder we don't believe you?

Mr. McConnell, we're "suspicious" because we have seen how you guys operate. In fact, we're not just "suspicious" but "disgusted".

* * *

Vintner's has a "Louisiana Hot Sauce" flavored potato chip now. It's very piquant.

...it vulcanizes your tongue.

Even so, the flavor is amazing; I think I'd like it more if I could taste more of the flavor and less of the HOT!!!, but putting less of the flavor on the chip would simply result in there being less flavor as well as less HOT!!!.

Anyway, I can never really taste anything from Tobasco except HOT!!! Tapatio--there's a hot sauce with a good flavor, but my bottle of Tapatio is a decade old and I really ought to replace it. It's still usable but I suspect the aging has not helped the flavor any. If I could find it at a local supermarket....

Anyway, the potato chips are good.

* * *

Mangajin is now on-line! This is good! I can re-read it all, even the issues I never saw before, and I don't even have to haul them out.

Thanks, Steven!

* * *

Two from AoSHQ about jobs, jobs, jobs!

The June jobs report is unexpectedly! crappy! The perpetually-surprised economists expected it to be bad enough--90,000--but were shocked--stunned--amazed--agog and aghast!--that the number was in fact 10,000 lower than that.

(...though Karl Denninger has an interesting theory about that. I wish I knew more about financial stuff, so I could really understand what he's getting at, there. However, he points out that employment isn't as dire as the headlines would have us believe; that much I understand.)

Obama was severely critical of Bush's job creation record eight years ago. Back in June of 2004, the economy added a piddling 112,000 jobs and the economy was struggling with an unemployment rate of 5.6%.

Now, however, the economy just finished adding 80,000 jobs and unemployment is 8.2%! We're moving forward, baby!

Er...wait.

* * *

Og tells us how to make the slide-hammer-vise-grips tool for about $20. This is an old post but it's a goody.

* * *

Throat singing!

My first exposure to throat singing came from the book Tuva or Bust, which was about Richard Feynman's quest (with his friend and biographer, Ralph Leighton) to get to Tannu Tuva without invoking his status as a Nobel prize-winning physicist.

Tannu Tuva was this small country that had been absorbed into the USSR. As such, in the 1980s, travel into the place was restricted, particularly for Americans. It took a lot of effort and paperwork to get the appropriate permits and visas pushed through the massive Soviet bureaucracy.

Of course Feynman could have written a letter to colleagues at the Soviet Academy of Sciences, done a few lectures for Soviet physicsts, and gotten permission for the trip to Tuva that way, as a side trip--but that was the easy way and he didn't want to do it like that. He wanted to do it the way an average person would have to, which meant not calling in any favors or putting on his "world reknowned physicist" cap.

But during the research phase, they found this old record of Tuvan throat singing; and the book about Feynman's last adventure included one of those flimsy, flexible vinyl records, so the reader could hear what Tuvan throat singing sounded like.

* * *

Last night I tried finding the service manual for the dirt bike on-line. I couldn't find a free download anywhere, but I did find the factory service manual for the Suzuki Samurai. It was 129 MB and I ganked it.

I don't own one, and I have no plans to own one, but I've always liked them and still kick myself for not buying the one I saw on Craigslist in 2006:



I could have--should have--bought that instead of the red Escort. Please don't ask me why I didn't--I have no f-ing clue why not. I probably could have gotten it for about $2,000 and it would have been a hoot to hoon around in, good on gas, and a convertible to boot.

NO I am not, and will not be, worried about "OMG they tip over", because Consumer Reports trumped that shit up. All vehicles can tip over; it's just a question of "how" and "why".

Rollover tests are done with wheels on outriggers, because that way you don't use up cars and risk injuring people. Suzuki did its safety tests with one outrigger on each side and the car was fine. Consumer Reports did it with two on each side, and it wasn't.

You don't think having all that extra mass hanging off the car contributes to instability? "There are two on each side, so it's balanced!"

Hold 5 lb weights in your hands and hold them up so your arms are horizontal. Move your upper body as if you're doing a cartwheel and notice how much inertia they have.

Now do it with 10 lb weights. Observe the difference.

The Samurai failed CS' "avoidance" test because of all that mass hanging off the car way outside of its chassis, not because it's inherently unstable. Sure it's got a higher center of gravity than most vehicles; but that BS (from CS) is why all 4x4s now have stickers on the sun visors warning drivers about the higher center of gravity that such vehicles have. Not because they're inherently unsafe, but because they don't want to get sued when some moron tries to drive a truck like a sports car and rolls it.

That would have been a fun vehicle to have, and if I'd known then what I know now I would have just bought the f-ing thing. Shit. Still, I enjoyed browsing through the service manual.

* * *

Outside air temp: 102°. Heat index: 115°.

Inside: 78°.

Lord, we praise and thank You for the invention of air conditioning, and for the chemistry, the laws of physics, and the laws of thermodynamics that make it possible in the first place. We thank You for the inventiveness You have graced us with, with the creativity You have provided, and for our ability to use the gifts You have given us to make ourselves more comfortable and our lives better.

Amen.
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