Sunday, July 27, 2014

How hot is Florida in July?

Cross posted to Ambiance on July 27, 2014 at 8:30 pm

Hot enough to melt people's brains.

A friend of mine, Heather Fallon, posted this example to FaceBook:

Posted Friday, 7/25

A few days ago, 9 year old Jake and our 14 year old neighbor, ventured out (with full parental permissions) on their bikes, wearing helmets, with cell phones, cash, and water bottles, for a 3 mile bike ride (sidewalk the WHOLE route) to the comic book store. Just as they got to their destination, two deputy sheriffs AND a state trooper pulled up in front of them. Someone called 911 and said "it's way too hot for two young boys to be riding bikes." The caller described the youngest boy as being "FIVE". His neighborhood friend who has been our neighbor for 14 years (ALL OF JAKE'S LIFE), when asked by the Po-Po, said Jake was "I dunno. Like 5 or 6 maybe." Parents were called and went and retrieved the boys. I wasn't there but I think Billy asked the cops something like, "WTF? Y'all got nuthin' better to do? THREE cop cars had to respond? They had helmets. They biked together. They had a phone and made a call home at their halfway mark. We finally get them out of the video game CAVE and What did they do WRONG?" They answered a complaint from someone alleging two boys were in danger. From heat. Outside. In Florida. In July. And then just as the words "heat exhaustion" were mentioned, Jake hurled red Gatorade.
Yep. Reminds me of the police showing up in force at my house late last year because someone called the cops on me for having abducted a child. The child was my daughter, and apparently someone heard me tell her, "Catherine, I won't leave you behind. I will never leave you behind," and took that to mean I was kidnapping her. (What I was actually doing was reassuring my very cranky child that I wasn't, you know, going to leave her behind someplace.)

All of which gets me to a conversation at our household this morning:

Wife: It's National Parents Day!
Me: Huh.
Wife: I think this means we can run away!
Daughter: _I_ don't want to run away!
Wife: You weren't invited!

I'm pretty sure that could get us arrested.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Squirrel of the Week: Vladimir Putin

For the week of 7/13/2014 to 7/19/2014

Yes, Big Bad Vlad is this week's squirrel. You might think that Vlad shouldn't count as a squirrel, and you're probably right. But the shooting down of the MH17, while almost certainly done by Russian backed rebels, shouldn't really be a geopolitical event. The reason is this: What the Hell were people thinking flying a civilian airliner through a war-zone? That is the height of irresponsibility. However bad these pro-Russian Ukrainian rebels might be, they are actually fighting a war, and should be expected to shoot at people and things they don't recognize as friends.

So talk of Vladimir Putin's awfulness is entirely beside the point. As is talk of pressuring Russia to cease hostilities. They'll likely stop when good and ready, but I doubt anything the US can do will accomplish anything meaningful, save perhaps to fuel Lurch's ambitions to be President. Europe, which has large amounts of trade with Russia, will have to lead on this front, and they're entirely ambivalent about doing anything. Russia has them by the short and curlies at least as much as they have Russia by the short and curlies. But as it is, Europe is so serious about opposing Russian ambitions that they're selling weapons to Russia!

So, Vlad really is a squirrel, you see, because all the bluff and bluster means nothing.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Read it and weep: The (association) football edition

From Razib Khan:

Qatar is going to spend $200 billion over a 10 year period on amenities for soccer because it is hosting the World Cup in 2022. Yes, the World Cup is a very big deal. But did you know that NASA’s budget for 2012 was less than 20 billion dollars. In other words Qatar could create its own rival to NASA if it wanted. But why would they? 
Comments number 2 and 7 are particularly noteworthy. A warning, though: Don't comment at Razib's site unless you've got a good point and can express it clearly, as he moderates comments and is brutal about it. (I thank him for that, too.)

More thoughts later, if I can find two functions brain cells in my cranium and get them talking to each other.

ADDED: Actually, a thought now. It should be noted that Qatar is a small country, and that the money they are spending is basically for a one-off event. A lot of what they're doing will be completely pointless by 2023.

Of course, in 2014 one could say the same about the entire history of the US manned-space program from 1959 to 2011, given that we can no longer get people into orbit ourselves unless we hitch a ride with a country with whom we have hostile relations. Progress!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Squirrel of the Week: the Child Migrant

For the week of 7/6/2014 to 7/12/2014

Last week we started hearing about the need to be kind to poor "migrant" "children" flooding across the borders. Given that a large percentage (I've seen numbers reported as high as 80%, but who can tell when the Administration is keeping everything this secret?) of these children are 14 or older (allegedly), and that they're coming here with no intent to return, this is just blatant manipulation.

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Squirrel of the Week: Justin Ross Harris

For the week of 6/29/2014 to 7/5/2014

The Border Meltdown continues, the employment report was NOT as good as the headlines suggest, we're still 3,671,000 full-time jobs short of where we were before the recession started, and any number of other issues, and a tragic story of little significance to those outside the Atlanta area is sucking the air out of the news.

Just another week of hard-hitting "journalism".

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Squirrel of the Week: No winner this week (UPDATED)

For the week of 6/22/2014 to 6/28/2014

Again, we didn't really get a squirrel last week. There's too much happening for even the American news media to come up with squirrels for diversion. I almost choose The DREAMer for the squirrel, or rather the propoganda version of same, but all those propaganda efforts have failed to hide that the US Federal government has unilaterally dissolved the southern border.

UPDATE: Fuckin' A, bubba! CNN is featuring a story on Casey Anthony today (July 3). Between this and that case in Cobb County, Georgia, Nancy Grace must be in Heaven.