Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sunday Beach Report 5/24/15

Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, and the beach is about as busy as we've ever seen it.
The previous owner of my new boat cruises by with some passengers.
 Seen through the zoom lens, you can really get the feel for how busy it is.

Although the temperature was a wonderful 70+, the stiff south wind worked up quit a chop beyond the protective jetties.
The water temperature is up to a tolerable 70 or so, and a few people are taking advantage of it. The sea nettles aren't due for another month or so.

I found this American Lady up in the sand dunes.

And this skipper, a Fiery Skipper, maybe, or Pecks. Darn skippers are hard to figure out.

Congress Threatens Ongoing Government Land Grab

My alternative title to this Washington Post article: Interior secretary: Hill funding divide could threaten national parks
The federal Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) has been used for 50 years to acquire land deemed to have special historical or environmental significance. Although the fund is popular with lawmakers from both political parties, legislation needed to keep the program alive appears to have stalled.

The law that created the program is set to expire in September, putting at risk a primary source of revenue for the nation’s largest preserves as well as state parks and community playgrounds and ballfields. The money — capped at $900 million annually but substantially smaller in most years — comes not from tax revenue but from royalties paid by oil and gas companies for drilling rights in federal waters offshore.

“Absolutely, there’s a risk that this could go away,” Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said in an interview. Jewell said that although the program has traditionally drawn heavy bipartisan support — the law that created the fund in 1964 had only one dissenting vote — a bill that would reauthorize the fund faces significant opposition from lawmakers who either are ideologically opposed to federal land acquisition or have other ideas for using the money.

“Anything that looks like a chunk of money that you can use for your other projects, some will want to go for it,” she said.
In other words "Keep your hands off Our money."
Resistance to renewing the program comes from Republican lawmakers who argue that the federal government should get out of the land-acquisition business. Some senior Republicans have called for selling much of the federal government’s holdings to states or private entities. Others, including Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), say that the LWCF should be restructured as a maintenance fund to pay for repairs to parks.

“I strongly believe that conservation in the 21st century must include taking care of what we already have — what we chose to conserve first — instead of simply pretending that ‘more is always better,’ ” Murkowski said at an April Senate hearing.
At what point will the Federal government have enough land? It already owns a majority of the land in several western states.

Let's consider a minute the consequence of the feds buying a parcel and taking out of private hands for "protection". First, government spends the money on staff time to acquire to property (and trust me when I say that it will suck up way more time and effort than you can imagine) Then, suddenly, the parcel is no longer paying property taxes to the state and local governments. Any economic activity on the parcel stops, and to the extent that the government has to maintain or protect that property, it takes on a permanent cost. Will that cost come out to the funds used to acquire the property? I doubt it. It will just have to come from the general fund, money which on the margin due to the deficit, has to be payed for with borrowed money.

Out west, I would be in favor of large tracts of federal land being slowly sold off to private interests (if you do it too fast, you might depress land prices too much). More land in private hands would mean more state and local taxes, more jobs and more economic production.

Don't Like the Economic Data? Just Change it!

US Government to Review Mystery of Slow 1st Quarter Growth
There's something strange about the U.S. economy in the first three months of every year: It frequently grows at a much slower pace than in the other nine months.

And on Friday, the government agency charged with calculating the economy's growth rate said it would adjust its methods in an effort to resolve the problem.

The changes could paint a much different picture of the economy's recent performance. Concerns flared when the government said late last month that the economy expanded just 0.2 percent at an annual rate in the first quarter. But many economists have challenged the government's data, and some have argued the first-quarter figure should be as high as 1.8 percent instead.

At issue is a process known as "seasonal adjustment," which is not nearly as convoluted as it sounds. Many routine patterns affect the economy, such as the layoff of temporary retail employees after the winter holidays, or a spike in consumer spending around Easter. Seasonal adjustment attempts to factor out those patterns to get a clearer picture of how the economy is actually performing.

Yet what appears to be a seasonal pattern still exists. Alec Phillips, an economist at Goldman Sachs, noticed that from 2010 through 2014, growth in the first three months of the year has averaged 0.6 percent, while it has averaged 2.9 percent in the other three quarters.

And Macroeconomic Advisers, a forecasting firm, has found that the pattern goes back further: Since 1995, outside of recessions, the first quarter has grown at half the pace of the other three.
It has become traditional for the Obama administration to blame the slow first quarter on a cold winter, and then turn around and call for more restrictions on fossil fuels in an attempt to stop global warming, which has stopped itself for going onto 20 years now.

What to do, what to do? Well, when the models don't fit the data, change the models.
Researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco argued that under a different method of adjustment, first-quarter growth this year would have been 1.8 percent, rather than 0.2 percent. The government seasonally adjusts components of gross domestic product, the broadest measure of the economy, before adding them together. The researchers argued that the final, aggregate data should also be adjusted.

Other economists, including at the Federal Reserve in Washington, have concluded that the government's figures are largely accurate. The first-quarter weakness over the years may be due to harsh winter weather and "statistical noise," they concluded.

The Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis, which produces the figures, will have the last word. The agency says it "is working on a multi-pronged action plan to improve its estimates of gross domestic product."
But that means that for we consumers, the numbers that we receive on economic progress will be further jiggered to look better than it looked previously. Look! Progress!

Well, they only have one more year to fudge the data to make the economy seem completely rosie for the government prior to the next election.

The Naked News

Or the news that's fit to bare

It seems that getting naked in public is the "new" way to get attention. Others are just getting naked because of drugs, lack of drugs, or serious anger issues. A few recent examples:

May 21 - Topless protestors shut down Market Street in San Francisco: Women Go Topless To Protest Killings Of Unarmed Black Women By Police
The Bay Area protest was just one of at least 17 other movements taking place in other metropolitan areas, including Chicago, St. Louis, Washington, D.C., and New Orleans.

Chinerye Tutashinda, a founding member of the BlackOUT Collective, told BuzzFeed News that the decision to carry out the protest by exposing their bodies was a local one, and that she did not expect other demonstrations in other cities to follow suit.

She added that the reasons behind the bold choice ranged from ancestral homage to social critique. “We wanted to be able to say ‘enough is enough’ and draw on traditions from Nigeria, Gabon, Uganda, and South Africa, from women who bare their chests and other parts of their bodies in protest,” she said.
Because nothing says "No justice, no peace" like bare breasts.

May 19 - 100 Students Participate in Topless Protests "Free the Nipple" Sit In at UCSD
A May 19 post to a Facebook account for Anni Ma read in part, “I can’t wait to share awkward, yet unforgettable moments with everyone during this social experiment…Let’s have compelling discussions and open our minds to new feelings, ideas, and experiences.”
. . .
Ma described her event as a “topless movement.” She told local ABC affiliate 10 News that it’s about “equality,” and that her purpose in exposing female chests is to make the world a “better place.” She said, “It felt, actually, really normal, and everyone just did it and it wasn’t a big deal, like, that’s how I felt.”
Bright college days, oh carefree days they fly
To thee we drink with our glasses raised on high!

May 21 - Man gets naked to protest overbooked flight in Charlotte
Travelers at North Carolina's Charlotte Douglas International Airport said a man stripped naked in the concourse because he was mad about an overbooked flight.

Witnesses said the man became angry when he was told his US Airways flight to Jamaica was overbooked Wednesday, leading him to strip nude and stand in the concourse without a stitch on his body for about 40 minutes.

One traveler, Sherry Ketchie, shared photos of the naked man standing among the passengers, which included children.
There's some suggestion he wasn't "quite right" as they often put it down south:
Police at the airport told NBC Charlotte on Thursday that the man was off his medication, was "having an episode", and was trying to collect his medicine from his luggage.
That reminds me, always take my meds while traveling.

May 20 -  3D hardcore porn film featuring explicit orgies, nudity and a transvestite prostitute sparks brawls at Cannes as desperate cinemagoers try to get into midnight screening
The crowds trying to gain entry for the midnight screening were so large that dozens of ticket-holders had to be turned away and arguments broke out outside the Grand Palais theatre.
. . .
'Like bad sex, (it) seems to go on forever with no climax or ending in sight,' tweeted Sophie Kaufman, of Little White Lies movie magazine.
Can the line between porn and fine art possibly get any blurrier? I don't know about you, but I'm not sure I'll know it when I see it.

May 20 - Latest twist on clothes-free relaxation? 'Nacations'
For some, staycations have evolved into "nacations" — and the nude recreation industry that the Wall Street Journal estimated had evolved into $400 million business a dozen years ago only keeps growing.

Serendipity Nudist Park has been around for more than 20 years, long before naked nature lovers coined the term "nacation." People here say guests have no hang-ups about body image, no judgments and no shame.

"Shame is something that must be learned; we're not born with it," said Stuart Antrim, who works at the park. "Once you get past 30 seconds of awkwardness, they realized that learned shame melts away."
May 19 - Naked, Machete-Wielding Man Threatens Long Island Costco Customers: Report
A naked, machete-wielding man was charged after he allegedly threatened bystanders and a police officer Monday on Long Island, according to a published report.

The man was waving the 20-inch machete at people in the parking lot of a Lake Grove Costco, Newsday reports.

Police found the man barricaded inside the cab of a tractor-trailer he operated for a New Jersey company, according to Newsday. He initially refused to get out of the truck, which contained clothes and a microwave, but later tried to get out with the machete as officers tried to contain him, the report said.
And maybe skip the meds before going to Costco?
He eventually tried to get out through a small truck window, and police subdued him. Officers allegedly found cocaine in the cab, according to Newsday.
May 11 - Naked Michigan State Sen Smith fought ex-wife before shooting
State Sen. Virgil Smith told police that opening fire at his ex-wife’s Mercedes-Benz with a rifle early Sunday morning was “the most stupid thing” in his life.

His ex-wife says she was met by a naked Smith at the front door of his home in the 18000 block of Wexford on the city’s east side and he beat her with his fists, chased her outside and shot at her four or five times as well as firing at her car.

The son of Chief Wayne County Circuit Judge Virgil Smith was being held by Detroit Police as they continue their investigation. Police Chief James Craig said police anticipated charges of aggravated assault with a gun and malicious destruction of property against Smith.
Shall we play a round of "name that party?"

And more from UCSD: May 10 - Naked Final Exam at UC San Diego Sparks Mom's Outrage
Arriving naked at a final exam is one of the most common nightmares for students, according to Psychology Today. At the University of California San Diego, however, the naked final exam is a requirement for a class in the visual arts department.

Students are required to perform “a gesture that traces, outlines or speaks about your ‘erotic self(s),'” according to the course syllabus. In the performance, all of the students are naked, along with the professor, Roberto Dominguez, who has taught the class for 11 years.

“It’s the standard canvas for performance art and body art,” Dominguez told local ABC News affiliate KGTV. “It is all very controlled…If they are uncomfortable with this gesture, they should not take the class.” He was defending the class after one mother spoke out, claiming the requirement was not clear and was a “perversion.”
To be fair, porn is one of California's only booming industries in the Obama economy and there are not a lot of good jobs out there in the arts, so it's probably a good thing they're getting their inhibitions lowered early.

May 8 - And there had to be a floron in the mix: Partially naked principal arrested with student in car
A Florida principal has been arrested after she was caught partially unclothed in a marijuana-filled car with a student.

Police say 45-year-old Krista Morton of Wellington was arrested Wednesday in Palm Springs. She is the principal at Mavericks High of Palm Springs, a charter school.

Authorities say they responded to a report of people involved in sexual activity in a car and found Morton with a high school senior. They say that when Morton opened the door, her shirt was unbuttoned, exposing part of her chest.

Police say Morton told them she had just met the teenager.

But police say the student said Morton was his principal. Officers report that they smelled marijuana inside the vehicle.
Was this an extra-credit assignment? Or a penalty for violating the "no dope" rule?

Unlike Instapundit, I don't blame the sense of female entitlement. I blame Florida. Have you ever been there? It's so hot it makes you want to rip off your shirt.

And finally, this helpful tip from one of the ONT's at Ace's: April 24 - Here’s Where It’s Legal for Women to Go Topless in the U.S.

These are only the state laws; local jurisdictions may have further restrictions on how you scare the horses. Shockingly Maryland is more prudish than West Virginia. Or we just like to have more laws.
Though green states indicate there is some degree of “topless freedom,” that does not mean it’s legal for women to go shirtless throughout the state. Local ordinances may ban or allow the practice in opposition to state law, and California is listed green despite the fight in Venice Beach. Orange states have “ambiguous laws;” in red states, female toplessness is illegal.

Picked up by Gatordoug at the DaleyGator in  "IT IS SUNDAY, SO GO READ THESE BLOGS."

Jogger Saves Sheep

Those horns looks like an accident waiting to happen.