Thursday, May 29, 2008

Cleveland's economy is on life support, but we have a low carbon footprint! Hurrah!

[Ted Turner and his eco-minion Captain Planet; a billionaire really should have made sure his superhero's tights don't have a baggy crotch.]

According to the Plain Dealer's Laura Johnston, when decades of lousy politicians hand you lemons, make lemonade!

"Cleveland has low carbon footprint"
Clevelanders are getting something right when it comes to global warming.

The five-county, Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor area has the 31st smallest per-capita carbon footprint among the 100 largest American metropolitan areas, says a report to be released today by the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.
Yup...turns out our crappy regional economy, caused by decades of high taxes, over-regulation and moronic, venal leadership is good for Gaia! Yay!
We each spew 2.2 metric tons of carbon into the atmosphere every year by driving on the highway, heating our houses and running our appliances. Carbon is the standard currency that scientists use to talk about air pollutants, encompassing the carbon present in coal, gasoline and carbon dioxide emissions.

In weight, that beats the 1.44 metric tons of solid waste each of us Cuyahoga County residents throws out each year. In the form of carbon dioxide gas, that much carbon would amount to a million gallons - enough to fill 1 Olympic swimming pools.
According to Wikipedia and some quick math, a typical Olympic size swimming pool's volume is a minimum of 660,430 U.S. gallons, depending on its depth. A pool containing 1,000,000 U.S. gallons would have to be slightly over 50% deeper than a typical pool of this size.

50% is not a trivial difference.

Additionally, the volume of a given amount of gas is highly dependent upon its pressure. The more pressure it is under, the less volume it occupies.

Lastly, "weight" and "volume" are apples and oranges; they have no direct correlation to one another.

But hey...let's not worry about any actual science, because we don't want to harsh the buzz brought on by this stellar news about the environment!
Still, the number pales next to the 2.6 metric tons of carbon emitted by the average American. And that matters since carbon dioxide accounts for about 84 percent of the U.S. greenhouse gases scientists say are accelerating climate change.
Wow...I'm pretty certain that I'm not personally emitting anywhere near that much carbon, else I should expect my apartment would require significantly more vacuuming and dusting. With a leaf blower and bulldozer.
"The fact that Cleveland wasn't at the bottom of the list is very exciting," said Andrew Watterson, Cleveland's sustainability program manager.
Ooooh...that is exciting! We're going down the tubes economically, but that makes Gaia happy, so it's actually good news! Whee!
The good news contradicts a Purdue University report last month that ranked Cuyahoga County fourth worst among more than 3,141 U.S. counties for carbon dioxide emissions. The Purdue study looked at industrial sources of carbon dioxide and ranked counties based on Environmental Protection Agency figures and local air pollution records.
But, but, but...I thought the "science" of global warmening was settled. Albert "Wide Carbon Stance" Gore and the UN IPCC say so. (Except for all of the scientists who have repeatedly asked the IPCC to remove their names from reports because they think said reports are complete shite. But what do they know, they're only, um, like, scientists.) Additionally, oh, look...a drowning polar bear!! Awwwww...poor thing.

[*Snip* a bunch of figures which I'm certain are meaningless, given the author's demonstrable utter ignorance of the most basic high school science.]
Regardless, local officials and national policy gurus are pushing us and every metropolis to do better.
Regardless? Freakin' regardless?? When it comes to real science (as opposed to "Pseudo-Science People Conjured From Their Gastrointestinal Tracts"), data that are so far apart mean that something's very seriously wrong. You can't just make the problem go away by saying "regardless".

Jesus H. Christ and His Orchestra! This woman is clueless and feckless.
"We've got a long way to go," said David Beach, director of GreenCityBlueLake Institute at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. "The good news with that is we can make a lot of progress by building cities with dramatically more efficient and nonpolluting energy systems, transportation systems and buildings."
Sure...we'll just get rid of the old cities and build new, non-polluting ones filled with hydrogen powered vehicles, bicycles, buildings cooled by lawns growing on their roofs, "Kumbaya" blasting from the solar powered public address system, rainbows festooning the skies and populate them with unicorns, puppies and hippies redolent of organic patchouli.

One small problem: I suspect that properly disposing of all those old cities is gonna put a little strain on landfills; just sayin'...
Watterson wants to improve buildings' efficiency, invest in public transportation and rethink the way Clevelanders live. But he's thrilled we're talking about carbon emissions and fuel efficiency.
I hope Watterson is planning on "investing" his own money, but suspect that he actually intends on extracting it from me at the point of government's guns. Hey, that a carbon nodule in your trousers or are you just "thrilled" at the prospect of controlling others' behavior?
So is Andrea Sarzynski, an author of the Brookings report.

The study lists ways the federal government should battle climate change, such as putting a price on carbon emissions, investing in research, promoting public transit and creating incentives to buy energy-efficient houses.
Except we clearly have no method at present of accurately measuring carbon emissions for an individual or a city; it's all done by computer modeling or simply inventing numbers, otherwise their wouldn't be such a disparity between Purdue's and Brookings' "conclusions". And "creating incentives" almost surely means even more wealth transfer via ridiculous "tax abatement" schemes and other foolishness which makes sense only to government officials and ecoweenies.
But state and local governments, as well as average citizens, matter too, she said.
Of course...because the forthcoming tomfoolery will require productive individuals (aka "citizens") in order to generate the enormous monies required for state and local governments (made up of totally non-productive individuals) to skim while transferring it from one sector to another.
"It's not just the green-minded people," she said. "Basically gas prices are going up to the point where . . . we're all talking about things we can do to conserve. Where it hits people in their pocketbooks, that's when they're going to start thinking about their own behavior and improving their own carbon footprint."
Actually, the reason that fuel prices are currently so high is largely due to the actions of the U.S. Congress and the environmental movement for the past three decades...but that's a screed for another time.


Saturday, May 10, 2008

Emails? We don't know nothin' 'bout no emails!

["Fake but accurate" file photo]

Here's the latest in the Cleveland Shitty Council's "Mystery Of The Disappearing Emails":

Cleveland City Councilman Joe Santiago turned over three computers from his ward office Friday to city officials and will open his personal e-mail account to be searched for e-mails about his relationship with a controversial bar .

Computer experts will also begin a "deep dive" of the city's outdated computer system today in an attempt to find missing e-mails to Santiago's City Hall account from May 2006 to July 2007, a period in which Santiago helped obtain a liquor permit for La Copa.

The bar on Clark Avenue near West 25th Street is managed by a convicted drug dealer and which now draws complaints from neighbors about fights, gunshots and rowdy behavior.

Results of the city computer search should be available, in part, by Wednesday.

Because city information technology employees could not locate the e-mails, the city has hired paying Visual Evidence/E-Discovery, a downtown Cleveland firm.

The company president, Daniel Copfer Sr., is the brother of Ron Copfer, a political insider who owns Fathom IT Consulting. Fathom is finishing a $321,000 upgrade to city council's systems, including the e-mail system the e-mails cannot be recovered from.

The search on all the computers will cost about $25,000, said Katherine Samsa, a spokesperson for Council President Martin Sweeney.

"Council's working hard at this and acknowledging that the state of our system is unacceptable," she said.
Sure...what could possibly be inappropriate in hiring the brother of the political hack IT "consultant" to attempt recovery of the emails?

"Independent data recovery services would have been really, really expensive. But good ol' Ron got us a 'family discount' so that we can save the taxpayers money, 'cause we're lookin' out for you. Trust me...$25K is a super special deal! It's for the children!"
E-mails to and from city accounts are public records under state law ands are supposed to be retained, but the city has been unable to meet The Plain Dealer's request for them.

Sweeney said this week that the city system does not save e-mails accessed from outside, nor does it save e-mails forwarded to outside accounts. That focused attention on the computers in Santiago's ward office where an assistant often opened the messages.
"Additionally, the dog ate our email server."
David Eden, a spokesman for Santiago, said the councilman turned over the computers because he has nothing to hide. A council employee picked all three up from the ward office Friday afternoon.

"If there's anything on there, they get it," Eden said.
My guess is that a clumsy, half-assed attempt has been made to "sanitize" the computers. I predict that these efforts will prove quite successful.
Next week, Eden said he and Santiago will go through Santiago's personal account on the hosting company Juno with an IT consultant and print any e-mails to or from Santiago's council e-mail account. He will not simply turn over the entire account to the city, Eden said.
Because who knows what other damning malfeasance might would almost certainly be found?
A representative of the city's law department could attend if necessary, Eden said.
As long as it's another crony with skeletons in their closet.
Eden said Santiago could not do that on Friday because he was at Lutheran Hospital with a kidney infection and wants to be there in person as the Juno account is checked.
Originally, the excuse was going to be that Santiago was in the hospital giving birth to an adopted Chinese orphan with AIDS as well as delivering a litter of puppies (awwww...puppies!) until it was pointed-out that even the average voting moron in Cleveland might not buy that.
Eden did not know if Santiago saves e-mails in a filing system or if Juno deletes them automatically over time. He said Santiago would grant permission for Juno to search its own computer records for that period, if needed.

Council considered doing the extensive search of the city computer system on Friday, but the system must be shut down. The search will occur on Saturday instead.
Because it's so much easier to search computers which are shut down. Plus, we can get us some o' that sweet, sweet overtime, baybee!
Samsa did not know why it would take until Wednesday for results and the company could not be reached Friday evening.
Oooh...color me "surprised"!

"Cleveland: All the corruption of Chicago, but without the pesky robust economy!"

Labels: ,

Thursday, May 08, 2008

More "Male Enhancement" Mailbag Malesac! (Uh huh huh huh huh!)

Booster for your manhood!
About time,'s getting tired of sitting at the kids' table.

Enlarge your bell-rope length
"Sanctuary!" (Well, it does bear a slight resemblance to Charles Laughton; must be the wen.)

Enlarge your device length - Your wife loves Big Daddy...
Actually, I don't think she fantasizes about Burl Ives too often.

Enlarge your instrument size
Hey...I used to have a Hammond B3 organ; I'm just as happy I've downsized my rig.

Rev up your lovemaking life
Vroom, vroom!

Upsize your sex pen1s easily
Wow...some people have a special pen1s that's just for sex? How bourgeoise; hmmmph!

Catch the eye of every woman
"Ow...quit it!" (I've heard of being blinded by lust, but this is ridiculous.)

Can't you reach her cervix uteri?
Well, I've got some BBQ tongs if she's got more than one uterus; just sayin'.

Turn it into a thing she will never forget
Like with malevolent bloodshot eyes and venom-dripping fangs?

Whip your pecker into shape
"Ow, quit it!" redux

Make your girlfriend worship you
"Jesu are not gonna nail me with that thing!"


Sunday, May 04, 2008

The Cleveland Plain Dealer's David Briggs: Obama Shill, Clueless Political Hack, Or Both?

In the "Ethics" section of yesterday's PD, Mr. Briggs wrote a column entitled "Politics is poisoning our discourse on racial issues".

His main contention seems to be that Mr. Obama ought not be called to account for his decades-long membership at Trinity UCC and his very personal association with Jeremiah Wright. (Despite the fact Obama acknowledges that Wright brought him to Jesus, performed his marriage, baptized his kids and has been the recipient of big donations.)

Mr. Briggs begins by asserting:
No one said being a prophet would be easy.
He continues with fulsome praise for Wright's accomplishments, including how he helped inspire Obama's presidential aspirations, before continuing:
What no one counted on was a political culture that would reduce thousands of sermons into a couple of shocking sound bites that portray the pastor and former Marine as racist and anti-American. And that the controversy would go so far that Wright and Obama would turn against each other in public.
Oh, sure...aside from the sound bites (which came from DVDs sold by Trinity UCC), I'm certain Wright's never, ever spewed such garbage. Not even on camera in front of the NAACP or National Press Club as recently as last week.

Apparently, Briggs is either completely unaware (or deliberately ignorant) that Wright is a vocal proponent of "black liberation theology", a pathetic, racist bunch of claptrap initially promulgated in America by theologian James Cone. In Cone's own words:
Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the black community ... Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.
In other words, Cone claims that a God who doesn't want to kill whitey ain't worth shit; that doesn't sound very loving or inclusive to me.

Some other highlights from Cone's writings bigoted frothings:
All white men are responsible for white oppression.

What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal.

Any advice from whites to blacks on how to deal with white oppression is automatically under suspicion as a clever device to further enslavement.
This would seem to distill down to "shut the fuck up and/or die, honky motherfuckers". But I digress; nothing to see here, folks.

Briggs continues:
For black and white religious leaders, it is a sad day in American politics.

Hillary Clinton, Obama's opponent for the Democratic presidential nomination, and right-wing commentators have exploited fears among significant numbers of white voters by creating a "scary" black figure in Wright, religious critics say. A campaign that had been historic in its ability to transcend race is mired in old racial divisions.
I believe it's more accurate to say that Obama's campaign (which had included Wright as an advisor) had simply attempted to ignore race, as they knew damned well what would happen when that particular can of worms got opened.

The truth of the matter is that Wright is scary.

And black.

It is neither possible nor desirable to ignore those facts.

In his speech to the NAACP last week, Wright claimed that black children learn differently from white children because blacks are right-brained and whites are left-brained. (This also begs the question: is Mr. Obama ambidextrous-brained? Enquiring white brains want to know.)

Wright's claims about "learning" are scary, not to mention racist stuff. But again, I digress; back to Briggs' column:
"This whole thing has had nothing at all to do with Jeremiah Wright," said the Rev. Marvin McMickle, pastor of Antioch Baptist Church in Cleveland. "This was an attack on the prospect of a black president."
Actually, it has everythng to do with a credible, major party presidential candidate who is closely associated with a racist dirtbag. Personally, I'd be very happy to vote for a black presidential candidate, but he or she would have to be someone who supported my own views. Like Thomas Sowell, whom I believe to be one of the keenest intellects of our age.
What America is left with is not a national discussion on racial and economic injustice that would have been a serious response to Wright's ministry. We are left with a political conversation on how much Obama will suffer from being a member of Wright's church.

It didn't have to be this way.
Yeah...because there ought to be no questions whatsoever asked of Obama about his long-term relationship with Wright; perhaps it's one of those "you wouldn't understand; it's a black thing" things.

And what the hell is "economic injustice", a phrase I've always had trouble parsing. Does money somehow violate the rights of black people? Sic dogs on them or spray them with fire hoses? Is it only worth $0.67 on the dollar when it resides in a black persons' wallet or is deposited into their bank account? Is there a different currency exchange rate for black folks?
The unprecedented attack on Obama because of his pastor began with the charge that Trinity United Church of Christ was racist because of its motto, "Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian." How many presidential candidates whose churches have been unashamedly all-white have received similar criticism?
It's not the motto; "it's the theology, stupid".
By sifting through years of Wright's sermons, critics found incendiary comments in which Wright uses an obscenity to refer to the United States or says it could be called the "U.S. of KKK-A."
Actually, not much "sifting" was involved; it only required purchasing DVDs from Trinity and watching them.
Missing from much of the conversation is the context of those lengthy sermons on a history of racial injustice and economic subjugation of the poor that religious leaders of many faiths have railed against. Within the tradition of the black church, where pastors often are expected to be social and political advocates, provocative sermons provide hope and inspire reform.
But don't you dare question their tax-free status. "Economic subjugation"? Briggs, uh, puh-lease!
That pastors such as Wright sometimes cross the line on reasonable discourse was evident this week when Wright affirmed his earlier statements that AIDS may have been a government conspiracy against blacks.
The fact that AIDS is also affecting non-black folks just goes to reaffirm my belief that government can't do anything right.
Obama rightly disowned this allegation and others as "a bunch of rants that aren't grounded in truth."
Obama added, "But they're so hilariously fucking entertaining, I couldn't keep myself from listening to them regularly for the past seventeen years, tossing a few bucks into the collection plate and sharing them with my children. Yeah, it's for the children; that's the ticket!"
But what we cannot do is silence pastors as they challenge us. Nor can we allow Obama's political opponents to use Wright to feed racial prejudices.
No; we should in-turn challenge pastors who spew this sort of vile, bigoted shit. And we cannot allow a man who is asking for the job of leader of the free world to weasel out of the inconvenient truth that he has been affiliated with this poisonous demagogue for quite a few years. Further, Obama's political opponents don't need to use Wright to feed racial prejudices; Wright's doing a splendid job without their assistance. You go, Reverend!
When he first addressed Wright's comments in March, Obama said Americans need to acknowledge the profound misunderstandings we have on race and work to heal those wounds.
Agreed; I cannot understand the profound lack of gratitude from a wide swath of the black community for all of us ofays who put our lily-white asses on the line for equality. Believe me, it is a bit hurtful; we pale, left-brained people have feelings, too. Black clergymen really ought to quit hatin' on us Mister Charlie-Americans.
"If we walk away now, if we simply retreat into our respective corners, we will never be able to come together and solve challenges like health care or education or the need to find good jobs for every American," he said.
I, myself, am not walking away; I am being pushed away by the vicious hatred from some members of the black community. And if you want to solve the above challenges, get the damned government out of every aspect of our lives. Just like my man Tom Sowell advocates.
Those are the words of a prophet.
Nah...they're the words of a pandering asshole who's been caught with his robes hitched-up to his waist.