The Gross National Debt

Monday, April 25, 2016

Calm down Benjamin...

Must do a better job of remembering everyone is NOT a journalist and everyone is NOT interested in making sure articles they write are 100 percent correct.

Hard to do.

Must also try to remember that other people are not grammar nazis and don't really care how they word stuff as long as they can hit send, even if it does present factually correct information.

All that said, I will admit that when I hit the send button on a recent thread, I suspected I was getting into an argument I could never, ever win, not even with incontrovertible facts on my side. I am very leery anytime I come across someone who immediately identifies as a feminist. Been clobbered one too many times just because I happen to have a X and a Y chromosome and I can think for myself.

When these feminists are also on the fringe in other beliefs, yeah. That piled up enough strikes against me to lose that metaphorical ball game without going to the plate even once.

Must do a better job of not arguing with people over idiotic stuff. If it doesn't matter, let it ride.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Yeah, Obama has it right this time

That is not a typo. I am in agreement with the current POTUS.

I wish to point out the current crop of presidential candidates, Reboobican and Damnocrat alike, are opposed to the POTUS.

At issue a bill pending in Congress allowing US survivors and survivor relatives of the 9-11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia in US courts.

Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad idea.

This bill does several things.

It pisses of the Saudis. Do you really want to go there? We're already fighting losing propositions in the Middle East. The Saudis, right now, are our allies.

Saudis could easily jack the price of oil to where we're paying more than twice the top price for gas not long ago. If the ME shuts off the pumps to the US, then South America will follow suit.

The Saudis are threatening to dump T bills. Well, ok, that one is not bad. I wish they'd dump 'em.

We've gone to war more than once over business interests (oil). We don't need to do it again.

Most dangerously, it sets a precedent. Sovereign governments are that. If they are going to be held accountable to US laws, then the US will be held accountable to their laws. Sharia law haters may begin gnashing of teeth and wailing.

You say we SHOULD be able to sue Saudi Arabia for what happened.

OK, what happens when the Saudis and a whole bunch of other countries decide their citizens can sue the US in their courts?

Didja think that through? US citizens enter one of those countries and are immediately seized because the US is guilty of something. Residents are already at risk in some countries. This bill will make things much, much worse. Foreign governments, which already don't need encouragement, will use this bill as a pretext to start capturing and holding US and US citizens' assets.

Do you really want to be held personally accountable for the POTUS-order drone strikes?

This begs another question - how can the US force the Saudis to show up in court?

And another - what assets can be seized? The Saudis are already threatening to dump T-bills. US officials are pooh-poohing this, saying that would be even more destabilization of international markets than the Saudis will tolerate. (Ok, I still say lettem do it.)

You can bet they will dump if the option is to have those financial documents seized. Then what? What about that market crash the US officials are predicting? Besides which is the Saudi dump T Bills or those are seized you can bet other countries will dump & run too. (Yeah, lettem do it.)

Think it through. It's just a bad idea.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Very real differences

In the raging debate about who gets to use which bathroom, I come down squarely on the side of abandoning all gender distinctions in the loo.

This idea of separate facilities is a very recent convention.

But in this raging debate over gender identity, there is one very real, very quantified and very under-appreciated issue.


Sports prove, and the evidence is absolutely there, that biologically born women and biologically born men ARE different. Men are about 10 percent better.

Fact. Reality. Empirical. Proven. Recorded. Etc.

Does this hold true once you get past the elite athlete level? After 30+ years of covering high school sports, I say yes.

At the high school level, boys hit harder, run faster, throw faster, move faster etc etc etc. Watch high school basketball. Look at scores in boys games v. girls games. Heck, WATCH the games. Look at any sport that has M and F teams.

So, and it please the court of public opinion, comes the question: Is it fair to let people who birth-gender swap compete directly against unswapped birth-gender athletes?

The evidence (the evidence, the evidence, the evidence, the evidence, the evidence, the evidence, the evidence) appears to point to this: Letting a gender-swapped biologically born boy compete in girls sports is going to give the swapper a definite edge. Letting a bio born girl gender swapped to a boy compete against boys is going to put the swapper at a distinct disadvantage.

At the elite amateur level (think international and Olympic-level sports) and many pro sport levels, this is pretty settled. No "performance enhancing drugs." In other words, no testosterone shots. If your body can't naturaly produce it, you can't have it. You can't augment either.

So what about it? Let gender-swapped compete against their chosen gender or against their birth gender peers?

I don't have an opinion. I'm just amused by this and the splodey heads this will create.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Out damned optimism!

Optimism. A positive outlook and a continuing belief system that it will work out and things are good.

Frustration. The desire to take the optimism out back of the woodshed and beat some sense into the thing.


So, posted a link to This Story and asked would people please answer the questions that author poses. The only condition posed: No quackery or as you probably know it qua- excuse me. Psychiatry. Why the embargo on quackery?

The Decline Effect. As soon as the shrinks can explain this and psychiatric drugs, they get to explain:

DSM V. In case you don't know, this is the shrink manual. It's voted on every few years. Voted. Shrinks get together and Majority Rule! vote to decide what is a psychiatric disorder and what ain't. It's exactly like ER docs gathering to vote on what constitutes a broken leg. Get the SCIENCE! in order and they get to explain:

Expert witnesses. Charged with a crime? Find an "expert" to testify you are more warped than a Mobius strip in a blender. The other side is going to find an "expert" in the same place to testify you are as sane as everyone in the courthouse. This is NOT a case of a few fringe elements with advanced degrees disputing SCIENCE! This is a case of half the room of shrinks say you are more nuts than a pecan processing plant and the other half of the room saying you are as competent as a pipe wrench in the hands of a plumber.

So the link got posted with a plea for definitive answers to the posed questions.

Got one, 1, near answer. The near answer comes from JW - "The abnormal behavior lived out by this person (someone with mental illness whom he has known for years) continues to be totally normal and defensible from that person's perspective."

Got 200 and counting extraneous comments, a few profanities and some hurled insults, which got 86'd. Got a few metric tons of defensive statements, justifications and positioning. Got some good-natured insults which I let slide because those of us making 'em don't truly mean it. And, they are funny.

Solid answers are harder to come by than ytterbium. No answers. The author even poses some excellent questions. F'r'zample, "Second, what’s the difference between someone with “gender dysphoria” (or, as it used to be called, “gender identity disorder”) and someone, say, with schizophrenia or “multiple personality disorder” or some other psychological condition?"

What about sex change regret? Don't go there. These waters are already so muddy they are starting to harden into concrete! (Ok, here's the other side of that one.)

<sound of crickets chirping is drowned out by rabid screams of entrenched sides which believes the others are the biggest gang of idiots since Congress>

Empirical evidence says getting straight answers to serious questions in social media is like voting for president. It gets ugly in a hurry and what you actually get is toxic waste that should really be shot into the sun for permanent destruction.

And yet, I posted. And yet, I hoped. And yet, reality once again came up and bitch-slapped my rose colored glasses right off my face.

And the hell of it is, I'll probably do it again. Damned optimist!

In case you don't wonder, I don't care what people do to themselves. I'd just like some reasonable answers to the questions in the article just 'cause I'm curious.