Clint Eastwood – Genius 8

Picture of Clint Eastwood at the Republican National Convention

Clint Eastwood In Dialog With Barack Obama Who Is In The Empty Chair Wearing His Empty Suit

The Republican National Convention came to a crescendo last night with Mitt Romney accepting the party’s Presidential nomination.

The most entertaining speaker of the evening was Clint Eastwood, who in a comical and biting speech, made fun of our feckless President. The President was figuratively on stage, ably represented by an empty chair. This is apparently a device used before by stage artists, and it was very effective. One could almost see Obama sitting in that empty chair, wearing his empty suit.

Eastwood is an artistic genius.

He also had Obama engaged in dialog. Barack was using distasteful words about what Clint could do to himself. Eastwood replied that Obama’s suggestion was physically impossible.  This was stagecraft, pure and simple. It works.

Allusions of incompetent politicians and Obama’s resemblance to the same were piled on fast and thick. Eastwood reminded us that it is the people who own this country. Politicians are just employees. Sometimes employees do not live up to expectations, and you are faced with a decision.

Let’s underline that statement, because Eastwood did it verbally. Politicians are just employees!

Boiling the situation down to everyday language, Eastwood said that sometimes you have to let an employee go. With clear reference to Barack Obama, he said that it is time to fire the man.

As Clint finally said, make my day!

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Ann Romney – Classy Lady 4

picture of Ann Romney

Ann Romney – Classy Lady

The Republican National Convention has revealed to the nation a classy lady in the person of Ann Romney. She is a gracious, lovely person who loves her husband enough to make a speech before twenty-thousand delegates at the convention, and millions more in the television audience. The speech was powerful and convincing.

One political problem is that Ann Romney looks like what people expect rich people to be. She looks good, speaks well, and has that grace you expect from ladies of means. Ann Romney was not always rich, nor was her husband, Mitt Romney. Even though Mitt’s father, former Michigan governor George Romney, was a wealthy, self-made man, Mitt benefited most in terms of his educational opportunities. Mitt’s wealth is the result of his own work.

Both Ann’s and Mitt’s families were immigrants. That is one reason why the Romney family is so enthusiastic about the future of our nation. They know what freedom means, and they know when we have leaders in Washington who are disconnected with the citizenry and history.

Ann Romney successfully mirrored her love of our nation to her audience last night. She came across as genuine, and she is.

What Ann didn’t talk about were her personal challenges with cancer and multiple sclerosis. MS is an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord. It gets progressively worse, and Ann Romney shows her personal courage in the way she does not talk about her problems.

Mitt Romney doesn’t talk about his problems, nor does he talk about his charitable works. Ann Romney brought that message home with the following statement, “Mitt doesn’t like to talk about how he has helped others because he sees it as a privilege, not a political talking point.”  These words ring true because the current occupant in the White House is stuck on the first person, singular in his speeches. There is a stark contrast in personalities and style.

Mrs Romney did her husband and the Republican Party proud, last night. It was a speech that many will remember for a long time. She is that good.

Weather Bureau Models – Not Very Good 4

Tropical Storm Isaac started out in the Atlantic Ocean, and crossed over into the Caribbean Sea. The NOAA models projected that Florida was in the path. With the Republican National Convention scheduled to run at the same time as the soon to be hurricane, the news media was awash with speculation on what would happen.

Of course, by the time that Isaac pulverized Haiti and Cuba, running over the Florida Keys, the models were forecasting that the path might be a little west of the original guesses.

After another day, the models were moving the probable path even further west. Over the weekend, the forecasted path had moved from the coast of Florida, to Alabama, to Mississippi, to Louisiana. Now, that grand old town, New Orleans, is being named to a rematch with mother nature as Isaac is supposed to hit there.

So, what is going on?

The government’s hurricane models are virtually worthless. A given hurricane path forecast is almost always wrong, and they have to correct their forecasts after the storm has gone in another direction. You can do almost as well by testing the direction of the wind with a wet finger.

There are a few things you need to know about models. This includes weather forecasting models, hurricane models, and climate models. There is a little understood fact in that they are all MODELS, and not actual, accurate representations of the systems they seek to study.

All models are built upon what we think we know, what we can measure, and a lot of assumptions about those things of which we don’t have a good understanding. For decades climatologists have thought that carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, is a primary driver of climate. As things turn out, carbon dioxide levels have increased dramatically in the last dozen or so years, and the world’s average temperature has changed little, if any at all.

This is one reason why none of those eighteen or twenty climate model used around the world have never made a correct forecast. The government’s weather and hurricane models suffer from similar problems. It is currently impossible to accurately represent the weather system mathematically.

When you wonder why those guys never get it right, remember that they, too, need their jobs. A government climate or weather modeler has job security, and they don’t even have to be right.

What a country!

Forty-Five Years Is Not Enough 6

Happy adversity anniversary, dear wife.

We are celebrating our forty-fifth wedding anniversary today. Yes, we were married on August 26, 1967 at the First Baptist Church in a small town in Tennessee where we promised to love, honor, and cherish each other, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, for better or worse as long as we both shall live. I couldn’t talk her into adding “obey” to the vows.

We agree that these have been the best years of our lives. As a matter of fact, we agree that we have been married all our lives. No regrets, here.

Put together on a blind date when we were sophomores in college, we never dated anyone else. I was not looking for a wife then. God intervened and I married the person that would become my best friend for life.

We could talk about the bad times, but there have been few in our relationship.

So, we celebrate our marriage and our lives together, still in love and acting like kids.

Life is good.

Leave Prince Harry Alone! 6

picture of Prince HarryIt is entertaining for our cousins across the Atlantic to have problems with their ill-informed decision to maintain a royal family.  Sometimes, the royals blow up in their newspapers with ill-conceived statements or actions in public. Prince Harry’s nude escapades in Las Vegas is just one more irritant.

Prince Harry is single and twenty-seven years old. Good grief! How many of us would like to be twenty-something, rich, and good-looking enough to attract a couple of dozen bikini clad beauties for an impromptu party? How many men out there would turn down the chance to have been at that party, making fools of themselves with a bunch of naked women?

If I were that somebody, and you know that I have never been, I would certainly take my clothes off with great rapidity and join in the fun. Now that I am old, it would take a little longer to disrobe. Uhh, I really didn’t mean that, dear…

Prince Harry has special problems. There are several big, stout men that follow him around as part of the royal protection team. Being born into wealth automatically makes you a target for confidence games and gold-digging women. His mother, Princess Diana, was one of the most famous and celebrated women in the history of the United Kingdom. Life as a royal can be complicated.

His biggest problem is that his father, Prince Charles, is the village idiot of the UK. Harry has undoubtedly inherited Prince Charles’ stupid gene, and we are just now seeing how things like this become manifest. The reason Prince Charles was never filmed at a nude party with a dozen or so beauties is that the Prince of Wales is ugly. He has chosen polo as his sport, but in his case it is hard to tell the rider from the horse. I guess the Brits favor that equine look.

Leave Harry alone! Philandering goes with the territory if you are a royal. Plus, what else do we have for entertainment during this election year?

New York Shooting; Lance Armstrong; Republican National Convention 7

New York Shooting

I turned on Fox News Channel this morning and learned of the shooting in New York City. New York Mayor Bloomberg was describing the tragedy in which two people were killed and another nine people wounded.

The shooter was fired from his job last year, and decided to kill the guy that fired him. After taking care of the first piece of this business, he encountered some policemen. The shooter and the cops entered into a gun battle. The shooter was killed, and several people were wounded in the ensuing shootout.

It is thought that some of the people wounded by police bullets.

This was not a random shooting. The killer planned it. Since New York City has laws against buying guns the killer, Jeffery Johnson, should not have had a gun. It seems that once again, gun laws don’t work.

Lance Armstrong

The most famous cyclist in the world, Lance Armstrong, has decided to no longer fight the accusations of the USADA  (United States Anti-Doping Agency) who claim that Armstrong, seven time winner of the prestigious  Tour de France, took performance enhancing drugs or substances.

The USADA has not offered proof of any indiscretion of Armstrong. Instead they say that several of Armstrong’s team mates are prepared to testify against him, even though there is no record of him testing positive for any substance in his long career. With so many wins in a grueling sport like cycling, it is no wonder that people are suspicious.

In my opinion the USADA is being high-handed in their accusations, convicting Armstrong with press releases instead of revealing real evidence. We all know that you can get some people to say anything, and Lance Armstrong feels this is what is happening.

The reason Armstrong is giving up the fight is that it is all-consuming, and expensive. If he is guilty that is one thing. To accuse someone without revealing the evidence is wrong. Maybe the truth will come out one day, but I am not going to hold my breath waiting for the USADA to reveal anything concrete.

The Republican National Convention

You can just hear the jokes, now. With tropical storm Isaac, soon to become hurricane Isaac, threatening the Tampa Bay area and the Republican National Convention, the terms “big blow”, “all wet”,”and “blowout” all come to mind. Ordinarily, it would be funny if the proceedings of this convention were not so serious. The very future of our nation can very well depend on how this convention is done.

If the convention is interrupted by the storm, the Republican candidate will be operating at a disadvantage to the current White House occupant. We all watch the major party conventions not just to listen to speeches, but to become familiar with that party’s platform, and get a feel for their candidate’s character and potential. Their records will be on display, and there will be lots of publicity, both true and biased.

You can count on the coverage of the Republican Convention to be twisted. It is important that the convention be seen as planned and that weather will not be a problem. The word is that the convention organizers have plans to cope with any interruption.

One of the things being bandied about is to reverse the timing of some of the events. There is a suggestion to nominate Mitt Romney, first. This might forestall any gimmicks or tricks that the Ron Paul people may be planning to stage. Plus, it gets Romney nominated regardless of what the storm does, and leaves the rest of the convention for the regular political speeches.

It’s Cool In The Mountains 10

My brother tells the story of when he was on a US Navy ship stationed in the Phillipines. On a very hot day in Manila Bay, the sun was turning the ship’s steel hull into an oven. A little breeze came up, and a young sailor from south Alabama climbed topside to get some air and observed, “It’s a little cool up here in the mountains, isn’t it?”. Everything is relative.

This weekend I am at this same brother’s house in the East Tennessee mountains, and I can attest that it is a little cool up here in the mountains. It is also beautiful.

Our little trip this week started with a couple of days in the Asheville, NC area. If you haven’t been there, you need to go. Asheville is the artsy capital of western North Carolina, and is most famous for the Biltmore House, a 175,000 square foot, 250 room mansion built by George Washington Vanderbilt in the nineteenth century. The estate is on about 8,000 acres. Today’s rich people have trouble imagining such opulence.

On any night downtown Asheville is hopping with live bands, street corner entertainers, and just plain interesting stuff. It is an island of cultural insanity in a beautiful setting, coexisting with back country mountain traditions. If you have been to New Orleans, this is Asheville on a weekend night.

In stark contrast to the liberal, and loose society that Asheville has become is the religious community. In the Asheville vicinity are some major religious mountain retreats. Ridgecrest, Lake Junalaska, and others are nearby as is the town of Montreat, North Carolina, home of world-famous evangelist Billy Graham and Montreat College, a Christian liberal arts institution.

Next to Montreat is the town of Black Mountain. It is a town of about six thousand people. It has more good restaurants than it has gas stations. Art boutiques and antique stores abound. It us one of those places that is a pleasure to explore. We stayed with some friends in Black Mountain, and recommend its inclusion on everybody’s itinerary.

If you like beer you will love this part of North Carolina. The Asheville area has some great micro-breweries and some really good barbecue like that found at The Twelve Bones Smokehouse in Asheville. One of the best breweries is the Pisgah brewery in Black M0untain. I am adicted to the Blueberry Lager they make there. Not only do chicks love it, but men love it, too.

The sailor from Alabama was right. It is way cool up here in the mountains.

When Will Joe Biden Resign? 6

Things are getting difficult for the goofiest Vice President in history, with the possible exception of Al Gore. It is hard to out-dumb Al Gore.

The speculation is that Obama will dump Joe Biden as his Vice Presidential running mate, and add Hillary Clinton. So, how is all this going to happen? What excuse will Obama make for picking such an idiot for a VP in the first place?

Remember, you heard it here, first.

I believe that Joe Biden will announce an illness he has been suffering, and will resign based on health reasons. His reasons may be alcoholism, drug addiction, or some obscure illness that sounds plausible. At any rate, everybody knows that Obama cannot win with Joe Biden. The nation is learning what many of us have known for a long time. Joe Biden doesn’t know enough to get out of the rain, but he is a good liar.

After Biden resigns in the next two weeks, Obama will appoint Hillary Clinton as Vice President, at which point she becomes the natural Vice Presidential running mate for Obama.

Hillary brings her own set of problems to the race.

First, she is smarter than Barack Obama. Second, she is meaner than a rattle snake. She will draw attention to herself. Obama will not like that.

This is what the Democrats have to do to win. They need somebody able to lie with the best, perform well in a televised debate, and is intelligent. Hillary fills all those qualifications.

Cornbread Makes Me Happy! 3

We all have our safe places where we go when the world gets too dangerous. Some people go back to their mother’s house. Some people take refuge in their religion. Some people just check out altogether. After all these years, seeing dead spirits and eruptions, and Democrat presidents, I have finally figured out my area of safety. I love cornbread, and if I am sad or upset just give me some cornbread.

Being a southern boy, I don’t want any sugar or flour in my cornbread. However, I was exiled in Texas for over eight years, and developed a taste for Jalapeno cornbread. Those Texicans have something going, there.

The election season is in progress if you want to call it that. We are in the same financial bind that the country was in back in the Great Depression when the unemployment number was over twenty percent. Today, that number is almost twenty percent. Hello? Do you wonder why I am doing my great escape to cornbread?

The future is in grave danger of going down the drain. Those who run the federal government have no clue what’s happening. Those running the federal government are only concerned with getting to run the nation another four years. The nation is in sad shape.

Buck up! There is good news at your grocery store. On the shelves of every grocery is a small section where cornbread mix is available in two-pound sacks. Just dump a cupful of the stuff into a mixing bow, add an egg, a cup or so of buttermilk, but leave the oil out of it. Follow instruction on preheating the skillet you use, and you will wind up with good cornbread.

Just grab a piece of this cornbread, and you too, can forget the incompetence of our politicians. Eat some hot buttered cornbread, and you will think you are in heaven.  Looking for a late night snack? Cornbread and butter milk is just the thing. You won’t need Prosac anymore.

The next several months will be difficult for intelligent people. Democrats never understand anything, anyway, but my Republican friends are subject to feeling bad when trying to sort through the lies of the current President. There are so many.

If our ancestors can prosper on a diet of cornbread and country cooking, so can I. Take a cue from the real American pioneers. Cornbread is for what ails you.

Car Wash In The Rain 6

Here I am at the car wash, waiting on my car to be washed, waxed, vacuumed, and flushed of all dirt and grime our recent beach trip generated. It is raining.

Yeah. I know. It is really dumb to wash your car on a rainy day. But, what do you do when your boss, err wife tells you to get the car cleaned out? You have no choice but to obey. When She Who Is To Be Obeyed speaks, you learn to listen after forty or so years of marital bliss, or something like that.

So, I sit here, typing a little blog into my computer, and lo and behold, the sun is coming out. Maybe the daily rain is over!

On the other hand, I think I have discovered a new physical principle.

Do you remember the rule about washing your car? If you wash your car, it is certain to rain. Now, we learn that this is a world of opposites. The new rule is, when you wash your car in the rain, the sun is bound to shine.

It all makes sense, now. Sunshine brings rain, and the rain brings sunshine. Get used to it.