Sunday, May 31, 2015

US to Go Forward Wasting Food for Fuel

Latest US proposal for ethanol could have political fallout
Under the proposed rule announced Friday, the amount of ethanol in the gasoline supply would increase in coming years, just not as much as set out under federal law. That approach drew criticism from ethanol and farm groups that have pushed to keep high volumes of ethanol in gasoline.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton has called for a robust renewable fuels standard while campaigning in Iowa, host of the leadoff presidential caucuses next year.
A politician going to Iowa supporting corn based ethanol? Well knock me over with a feather.
The 2007 renewable fuels law tried to address global warming, reduce dependence on foreign oil and bolster the rural economy by requiring a steady increase in the overall amount of renewable fuels such as ethanol-blended into gasoline over time.

The new proposal would reduce the amount required in the law by more than 4 billion gallons in 2015 and by more than 3 billion gallons next year.
This is one case where I will gladly support the administration ignoring  the letter of the law.
The EPA said the standards set by the law cannot be achieved, due partly to limitations on the amount of renewable fuels other than ethanol that can be produced.
Sure, they can produce it, but they can't find anywhere to sell it; cars and trucks are already pretty much limited out at E10 (10% ethanol), only a fraction of the vehicles on the road are safe to use with higher blends, and given the limited market, few retailers have higher blends.
Next-generation biofuels, made from agricultural waste such as wood chips and corncobs, have not taken off as quickly as Congress required and the administration expected. Also, there has been less gasoline use than predicted, the EPA said.
Funny how the law can't make science invent things any faster. Making ethanol out of random cellulose like wood and corncobs is not easy, or nature would do it. EPA and Congress thought they could wave their collective hands and turn pi into 3.0.

Turning good corn into ethanol to fuel cars is just a bad idea. It doesn't save much fossil fuels (if that's really the idea); cars running E10 get 3-15% lower mileage, suggesting that the ethanol is almost an inert diluent for gasoline at that blend. The use of corn raises food prices, and deprives the poor of the world of some needed food, and causes additional environmental problems as more area is put under the plow, and more fertilizers and pesticides are required. Hit With Racketeering Charge

Clinton Foundation hit with racketeering lawsuit
Bill and Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation have been hit with a racketeering lawsuit in Florida court. The lawsuit, filed by Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch, includes a legal request to have the Florida judge seize the private server on which Hillary Clinton and her aides hosted their emails while she served as secretary of state. Klayman has filed dozens of lawsuits against the Clintons and other prominent politicians.

The racketeering, influenced and corrupt organizations, or RICO, case alleges the former first couple and their family philanthropy traded political favors for donations or generous speaking fees for Bill Clinton while his wife was the nation's chief diplomat.

"Negotiations by email about influencing U.S. foreign policy or U.S. Government actions to benefit donors to ... The Clinton Foundation or sponsors of speaking engagements would not be captured on a U.S. Government email account because her emails would not be with a U.S. Government official," Klayman said in court documents obtained by the Washington Examiner.

"Hillary Clinton deleted 32,000 email messages from her email server that included her communications arranging, negotiating, and agreeing upon speaking engagements by Bill Clinton in return for large speaking fees and donations to The Clinton Foundation," the documents, dated May 20, said.
Klayman has been a lot more successful at obtaining documents the government has been hiding than the Congress. I don't really understand why it works that way, except that the Congress doesn't seem to have ready access to judges.

Even Nancy Pelosi is looking askance at the goings on at, Hillary’s going to have to explain the Clinton Foundation shenanigans
but one gets the sense that Nancy Pelosi still remains very open to whatever explanation Hillary Clinton will offer … once a reporter gets to really press her on the Clinton Foundation scandals. This exchange is notable both for Pelosi’s response and the venue in which it’s demanded. Pelosi got grilled on MSNBC, not Fox or CNN, with Thomas Roberts pressing in extensive detail and full context the sordid payoff from a charity trying to raise money to build schools in impoverished nations. “The Clintons will have to answer for the foundation,” Pelosi responds, but then promptly tries to rationalize the greed away:

The "very good cause" that the ex-speaker cites are about 84% paying the Clinton's parties, airline bills and Sid "Vicious" Blumenthal salary, and about 16% going to actual good works.

The Clintons are to America as the Lucky Luciano was to Las Vegas.

"Easy Like Sunday Morning"

Wombat-socho checks in from his new home town with "Rule 5 Sunday: Welcome To Las Vegas."

Philippa Hanna:

Don't Take The Bait!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Maybe This is What Tom Lost Yesterday

This was just about where we were fishing yesterday in the early afternoon, when Tom got a strong pull from a big fish that got away:

Mary Lee being tagged

White Shark Mary Lee Pinged in Chesapeake Bay. It is a low quality ping so we are not certain of her exact location. White sharks do venture into bays and estuaries’ at times. She was not at the surface long enough to get a strong connection with the satellites. We will wait for her next ping to verify her location and post an update at that time. Follow us here for her latest movements:
However, the ping is likely to have been bogus, based on her next ping around 2 AM today off  New Jersey near Atlantic City. Even taking the short cut through the C&D canal, that would be extraordinary swimming.

Saturday Beach Report 5/30/15

Another partly sunny, breezy, glorious day at the beach. We arrived in the afternoon, just at high tide (so the fossil hunting was awful). The beach was packed.
The 15-20 mph south wind had a chop kicked up on the south side of the jetty. It didn't stop this couple from kayaking.
A game of beach volleyball was being played at the volleyball court. I think they were cheating by actually keeping score.
Lots of people just coming down to soak up the sun
The incipient red tide I reported a few days ago has blossomed into a thick soup. You can even smell it in the air, if you have the experience of growing algae in the lab.

The was a game of Frisbee being played in the water. In this case, the rules seemed to require holding a beer to handicap your agility and ability to grab.
We had a surprising first today. As we rounded a corner at Calvert beach we encountered our very first nude sun bather. She had a companion out in the water skinny dipping (NSFW).
Some heavy construction work going on.
Now, that's quite a pair of speakers! - A "Model" Charity

Legal expert on whether donations to Clinton Foundation are bribes: 'If it quacks like a duck, chances are it's a duck' 
Two legal experts tell Breitbart News Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation could be in legal peril for violating United States statutes, as found in 18 U.S. Code § 201 – Bribery of public officials and witnesses.

When asked if the donations to the Clinton Foundation by defense contractors including Boeing (which subsequently received State Department approval of sales of their products to foreign governments) constituted a violation of domestic bribery statues, Law School Professor and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) expert Michael Koehler tells Breitbart News, “I’ll answer that question by quoting a former law professor who was fond of saying ‘if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck chances are it is a duck'”

Former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Andy McCarthy thinks there’s enough evidence for the FBI and DOJ to launch an investigation into whether Hillary Clinton broke federal statutes that prohibit the bribery of public officials.

“There is certainly a reasonable basis for federal agents and prosecutors to investigate whether there was an understanding that Secretary Clinton would be influenced in the performance of her official duties by lavish donations to her family foundation, and, indeed, that the Clinton Foundation was operated as a racketeering enterprise,” McCarthy tells Breitbart News.

“This is the theory on which the Justice Department has proceeded in the prosecution of Senator Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) — in fact, the main difference between the two cases may be that the staggering sums of money that were poured into the Clinton Foundation by supplicants who benefited from Hillary Clinton’s stewardship of the State Department dwarf the amounts involved in the Menendez indictment,” McCarthy continues. . .
The sheer audacity of the Clinton's money laundering racket, combined with the unwillingness of the media to seriously question or investigate them is simply appalling. There's really no excuse possible.

For the Petra Nemcova part of today's story, I'm going with Ace's headline: A Tsunami of Graft: Bill Clinton Heroically Raised Money for the Tsunami Vicitms, By First Securing a $500,000 Payment For his "Charity"
If she can handle alligators
she can handle Bill

There is a special place in hell for this clan of grifters.

Deborah Sontag reports:
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, Petra Nemcova, a Czech model who survived the disaster by clinging to a palm tree, decided to pull out all the stops for the annual fund-raiser of her school-building charity, the Happy Hearts Fund.
Petra is one of many previous Rule 5 winners.
She booked Cipriani 42nd Street, which greeted guests with Bellini cocktails on silver trays. She flew in Sheryl Crow with her band and crew for a 20-minute set. She special-ordered heart-shaped floral centerpieces, heart-shaped chocolate parfaits, heart-shaped tiramisù and, because orange is the charity's color, an orange carpet rather than a red one. She imported a Swiss auctioneer and handed out orange rulers to serve as auction paddles, playfully threatening to use hers to spank the highest bidder for an Ibiza vacation.
The gala cost $363,413. But the real splurge? Bill Clinton.
The former president of the United States agreed to accept a lifetime achievement award at the June 2014 event after Ms. Nemcova offered a $500,000 contribution to the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation. The donation, made late last year after the foundation sent the charity an invoice, amounted to almost a quarter of the evening's net proceeds -- enough to build 10 preschools in Indonesia.
Or buy 4 years of Sid "Vicious" Blumenthal.
Happy Hearts' former executive director believes the transaction was a "quid pro quo," which rerouted donations intended for a small charity with the concrete mission of rebuilding schools after natural disasters to a large foundation with a broader agenda and a budget 100 times bigger.
"The Clinton Foundation had rejected the Happy Hearts Fund invitation more than once, until there was a thinly veiled solicitation and then the offer of an honorarium," said the former executive director, Sue Veres Royal, who held that position at the time of the gala and was dismissed a few weeks later amid conflicts over the gala and other issues.
Come on, Bill, have you no shame? Oh, that's right.
A longer digest at Business Insider-- which notes it is "extremely rare" for one charity to pay money to another so-called "charity."

It also notes the charity that was supposedly getting the benefit of Clinton's star power raised less money the year he got his "award" than it did the previous year. . .
Remember, the "charity arm" spends about 10% of it's income on good works, the remainder goes to Clinton lifestyle support (e.g. flying), and salaries for Clinton hacks to wage partisan warfare.

And contrary to what liberals might like to sell you, the issues with the are not problems with "America's broken campaign finance system": The Clintons’ cash is not part of a “broken political system”
Nicholas Kristof at the New York Times makes an important, impassioned plea for all of us to remember that the tens of millions of dollars that Bill and Hillary Clinton have been raking in recently is not some indication of a character flaw on their part. It’s only a symptom of the morally bankrupt, political swamp which can suck down even the best of folks.
The problem is not precisely the Clintons. It’s our entire disgraceful money-based political system… Most politicians are good people. Then they discover that money is the only fuel that makes the system work and sometimes step into the bog themselves.
. . . Jim was quick to point out the rather glaring flaw in this argument. It’s true that playing in the American Game of Thrones can be an expensive proposition, and when vast sums of money begin flowing, problems can and do follow. But that’s not the case with the Clintons because they weren’t collecting all that cash to fund an election.
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Bill and Hillary weren’t hitting the$700,000-per-speech-in-Nigeria circuit because they want to self-finance her campaign – at least, as far as we know. Bill and Hillary don’t want that money as “fuel to make the system work.” (Jeff Jacoby calculates that the Clintons’ average speaking fee is nearly five times what the median US household earns per year.) They want their $30 million per year for themselves – although we know they don’t spend it on private jets, because the Clinton Foundation already pays for all of their travel expenses.
Hillary Clinton isn’t funding her presidential campaign with her own cash… at least that we know of yet. And why would she? First of all, her own team estimates that it’s going to cost a couple of billion to haul her scandal plagued baggage train back into the West Wing, and the Clintons aren’t sitting on that kind of money yet. (At least not as far as anyone can prove.) Their total stated worth wouldn’t get her through the primary season. Besides, there have been people lined up and waiting to throw campaign cash at Hillary since long before the words “considering a run” ever crossed her lips. Why risk your own money when you can run the table with donations from the faithful?
Pretty good deal, go to a party with a pretty young model, get half a million bucks donated to your charity, which goes to paying for your lifestyle, all tax free!

The Clintons are to campaign finance reform as Al Capone was to prohibition.

Wombat-socho checks in from his new home town with "Rule 5 Sunday: Welcome To Las Vegas."

Obamacare Schadenfreude Pizza

Five years in, pizza chains find ObamaCare menu mandate still half-baked
Five years ago, we discovered one of those hidden items in ObamaCare that Nancy Pelosi promised we’d only see after the bill got passed — and she was correct. The bill included a federal mandate for restaurants with 20 or more locations to post calorie counts on menu items, even though research since passage of ObamaCare suggest that calorie counts on menus don’t change consumer behavior at all. It does change the overhead for restaurants and their ability to expand and change their menu offerings, and nowhere is that problem greater than in the pizza industry. Dylan Scott reports for National Journal that the largest chains have finally begun to work on Congress to get rid of the mandate, or at least provide an exception for a sector where almost every purchase is a custom order:
This is Big Pizza’s beef: People order pizza by phone or online. (Liddle pressed this reporter on how he procures his pies. Usually through a mobile app, for the record.) The industry estimates that only 10 percent—and Liddle said it could be even as low as 2 percent—of their customers are actually going to see the calorie information that they put up in stores. Because of that, they didn’t initially expect the FDA to mandate calorie counts on pizza places’ physical menus. But that’s what the final regulation requires.
“Very few people walk into a pizzeria, look up on a menu board and say, ‘Hmm, what will I have?'” Liddle said in an interview. “We don’t want to not do labeling. We do it already. We don’t want to get out of it. We want to do it. We want to do it in a way that makes sense for our consumers, that they can understand, and we want to do it in a way that won’t burden our small-business franchisees.”
Under the FDA rule, Liddle said, the small-business owner of a Domino’s franchise is going to have to spend a couple thousand dollars posting the information and it might not even help those select few customers, anyway. Domino’s has 34 million different pizza combinations; Liddle believes Pizza Hut has tens of millions more. The industry therefore argues that nobody is going to get anything out of the huge calorie ranges that its members are going to have to post on the menus at their stores to cover all the possibilities and comply with the rules.
So the American Pizza Community thinks it has a solution. It supports a bill introduced last month by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the No. 4 Republican in the House, and Democractic Rep. Loretta Sanchez that would revise the ACA’s menu rules. Restaurants where a majority of orders are made off-premises (read: pizza places) could post their calorie information online to comply with the law. That way, the industry argues, customers could get the information where they’re ordering. Domino’s put out a video last week of customers complaining about the regulations to try to build some momentum for the legislation.
That’s a start, but it’s long overdue. Smaller chains have made these appeals for years, far longer than the two years Scott cites with Domino’s. Like most kinds of regulatory burdens, this mandate provides a much larger burden for smaller chains, and so gives the larger chains a competitive advantage. Only in the last couple of years have the biggest chains realized that the burden was so extensive that it outweighs the competitive advantages they get, and now they want Congress to act on the issue.
One problem with food labeling is that the information is already out there; the internet is littered with sites that can give you estimates of the calories in a dish as well as a mandated calorie count. And the (relatively few) people interested in such counts probably already have the information in hand. Forcing companies to make and post long lists of shifting calorie counts is a waste of everybody's time and money.

EHRs: Aother Obamacare failure
Another provision of Obamacare is proving to be utter nonsense, beyond the Democrat’s lies about keeping your doctor and your health plan if you like them. This shouldn’t be all that surprising, given that the entire 1,200+ page law was rushed into law without any serious thought as to its consequences. Charles Krauthammer on “Why Doctors Quit“:
I hear this everywhere. Virtually every doctor and doctors’ group I speak to cites the same litany, with particular bitterness about the EHR mandate. As another classmate wrote, “The introduction of the electronic medical record into our office has created so much more need for documentation that I can only see about three-quarters of the patients I could before, and has prompted me to seriously consider leaving for the first time.”
You may have zero sympathy for doctors, but think about the extraordinary loss to society — and maybe to you, one day — of driving away 40 years of irreplaceable clinical experience.
And for what? The newly elected Barack Obama told the nation in 2009 that “it just won’t save billions of dollars” — $77 billion a year, promised the administration — “and thousands of jobs, it will save lives.” He then threw a cool $27 billion at going paperless by 2015.
It’s 2015 and what have we achieved? The $27 billion is gone, of course. The $77 billion in savings became a joke. Indeed, reported the Health and Human Services inspector general in 2014, “EHR technology can make it easier to commit fraud,” as in Medicare fraud, the copy-and-paste function allowing the instant filling of vast data fields, facilitating billing inflation. . .
Over the past several years, we have seen the rush to electronically record and track health care records consume more and more  time and money in health care. Like many good ideas, it can be (and probably has) been instituted before it was really ready, and then government mandates have made it more rigid and bureaucratic than was necessary.

Rule 5 Saturday - Audrina Patridge - Long Lived Queen of the Hills

The subject of this week's Rule 5 special is Audrina Patridge, the longest survivor of the reality show "The Hills". I'll drink to that.
Audrina Cathleen Patridge (born May 9, 1985) is an American television personality, television presenter, actress, and model. In 2006, she rose to prominence after being cast in the reality television series The Hills, which chronicled the personal and professional lives of Patridge and friends Lauren Conrad, Heidi Montag, and Whitney Port. . .  Upon the series' conclusion in 2010, Patridge was established as the only cast member to appear in all six seasons.

Longer than the original Star Trek. She would have made a good "green girl."
In October 2010, Patridge announced that she would star in Audrina, an upcoming VH1 reality series following her life after The Hills. The series premiered on April 17, 2011, with disappointing ratings, and it was cancelled after only one season. 
I never saw it.

Following the end of her career in reality TV, Patridge continued to pursue acting, and was cast in a part in Scary Movie 5; however her scenes were cut from the finished film due to the scene being too risqué for the PG-13 movie.

Some "risqué" material here, here, here, here and here (NSFW links).

GOODSTUFF's 192nd Blogging Magazine issue features Natalie Dormer, the bodice ripper I highlighted back in January of 2014. Linked at Pirate's Cove in the weekly "Sorta Blogless Pinup" and links. Wombat-socho sends the master list "Rule 5 Sunday: Hot Times In Houston" from the road.

Don't forget "The Canonical List of Rule 5 Posts", where I keep a running list of my Rule 5 posts.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Lessons from the Sex Front

A pioneering lesbian activist who called heterosexuality “the ideology of male supremacy” and condemned marriage as “slavery” for women is now working as a math teacher in North Carolina.

As a graduate student in 1969, Margaret Small helped begin what became the Women’s Studies program at the State University of New York’s Buffalo campus and in 1972 co-taught a course called “Lesbianism 101″ recognized as the first such class taught in the United States. Since 2009, Small has been employed as a K-12 Mathematics Curriculum Specialist for Buncombe County Schools in Asheville, N.C., according to her LinkedIn profile. However, in the 1970s, she was a member of a radical lesbian collective known as The Furies, co-founded by legendary feminist Charlotte Bunch. Small’s 1975 essay “Lesbians and the Class Position of Women” offered a Marxist interpretation of “lesbian consciousness” as part of a “revolutionary struggle” to end women’s “oppression” in the “relationship of slavery,” as she called marriage.
At least she nominally had a useful skill to fall back on. Imagine if she were like most modern feminists with a diet of only feminist garbage to promote.

Another lesson. When accused of something by leftists or feminists (but I redund), you can be pretty sure it's pure psychological projection: Who is Silencing Who?
Nobody on campus is allowed to criticize feminist theory nor to mention the hideous hatefulness of feminist rhetoric. Our universities are teaching feminists that they can lie with impunity, defame innocent people without consequence, and claim victimhood (“harassment!”) if anyone objects to their lies and insults. Every time Christina Hoff Sommers sets foot on a university campus, she is deliberately smeared, accused of being a “rape denialist,” and no one in authority — not a single administrator at any university — will dare say a word against the deranged fanaticism of the feminists who engage in these brownshirt tactics. As I explain on page 54 of Sex Trouble:
“Unless we are willing to oppose feminism now, we may find ourselves eventually living in a totalitarian society where such opposition is prohibited by law.”
And “eventually” could arrive much sooner than most people imagine.
And when some "outrage" occurs where some "winger" is accused of some horrendous crime against feminists or leftist (but I redund again), you should immediately suspect "A Moby in the ‘Manosphere’"; basically a false flag operation designed to make conservatives look bad:
Aaron Clarey wrote an article at Return of Kings highly critical of the new movie Mad Max: Fury Road. Because I almost never go to movies, I don’t really care about this any more than I care about any other vile poison emerging from Hollywood. . . However, it is not Aaron’s opinion of this movie, but rather a comment someone left on his article that caught my attention because it caught the attention of a left-wing “male feminist” Whose Name Shall Not Be Written Here. The comment by “TS77RP1″ reads thus:
The only way back is to begin punishing ambition in our daughters and in all female children. They need to be physically and psychologically disciplined to be servile and deferential and they unfortunately need to have it beaten into them that they should NEVER trust their own judgement and always seek guidance and permission of their male headships.
My daughter would be turned out with nothing but a shirt on her back if she so much as looked at a college website or played with her brother’s educational toys.
She would be belted to the point of being unable to sit if she exhibited confidence in decision making.
I don’t want my wife to step foot out of the house unless her every dime and minute spent can be accounted for and executed in conjuncture with my approval. My daughter will exude obedience and timidity for whoever her future husband is and it’s imperative that all Christian Men demand nothing less within their own homes. Playtime for feminazis and the left is over. This is our world and our heritage to protect. Let the cultural war begin!
Well, this is a horrifying thing to read, but is it authentic? I did a search for “TS77RP1″ and this comment has apparently been deleted from Return of Kings and, furthermore, the only places on the Internet where that handle can be found are all quoting the left-wing “male feminist” Whose Name Shall Not Be Written Here.
So, fake in all probability.

With a name like this, they're just begging to be not taken seriously: The Dictatorship of Godless Perverts
. . . there is no need to speculate about Greta Christina’s feminism, her atheism or her role as “co-founder and co-organizer of Godless Perverts.”

You are almost certainly wondering, what the heck is that?
Godless Perverts presents and promotes a positive view of sexuality without religion, by and for sex-positive atheists, agnostics, humanists, and other non-believers, through performance events, panel discussions, social gatherings, media productions, and other appropriate outlets. . . .
Godless Perverts is committed to feminism, diversity, inclusivity, and social justice.

So they like diversity in their perversity, you see. These advocates of “diversity” and “inclusivity” cannot tolerate dissent, however, as events at a November 2014 meeting of Godless Perverts proved. . .
Feminism, diversity, inclusivity, and social justice. To me, these are all "trigger words" and suggest that I should check my government to make sure its wallet has not been picked.

Things feminist prefer not to confront: Rape Culture Update
Guarantee no feminist will take notice of this story:
A Centreville man has been charged with breaking into a home and inappropriately touching a 6-year-old girl who was sleeping girl inside, Fairfax County police said.
Josue Felipe Velasco Santiago, 19, of the 14000 block of Golden Oak Road was arrested May 27 following the incident that occurred in a home nearby at Rustling Leaves Lane and Golden Oak Road, police said.
Three children, ages 14, 8 and 6, were sleeping alone in the home about 3:30 a.m. when an intruder entered the home through a window, touched the 6-year-old girl inappropriately and then fled back out the window, police said.
Josue Felipe Velasco Santiago is neither a University of Virginia fraternity member nor a Duggar, so feminists don’t care.
A sucker bet.

A trip down the feminist rabbit hole: More From Feminist Tumblr
Autumn is a 24-year-old cisgender queer Muslim, who posted this:
“Hands up if large groups of aggressively loud
white boys in your vicinity freak you out.”
To which spyderqueen (“mental health stuff, feminist rantings”) added:
“One of the things that bonds women, POC, and LGBTQA+ together: The fear of white men in numbers.”
That comment got more than 300,000 likes and reblogs in nine months. This is what feminism is really about: The promotion of completely irrational (but politically useful) fear.

My advice to “white boys” is: Always travel in large groups and be aggressively loud, because it makes feminists freak out.
Their comet can't come soon enough.

If the Fish Won't Bite. . .

. . .Snag 'em in the ass.

I snagged a walk-on trip with Walleye Pete out of Solomons Island this morning with Trevor, Tom, Kenny and Josh. Fishing having been poor in the Eastern Shore Islands recently, Pete elected to go north.
Sunrise almost makes getting up at 3:30 AM worth it.
We hit the old familiar "Location X" on the way up, and caught a few fish there. Trevor and Tom mug for the camera.
We then headed across the way to the remains of James Island, much diminished from the last time I walked on it, and fished where I have trod before, in a gap that used to be above water. One blow up on top water lure was all we got there
 From there we headed further north to Sharps Island Light, an abandoned light house where there use to be an island thought to be the inspiration for Jame Michener's disappearing Devon Island in "Chesapeake"
We had a couple of fish there, but no real masses.

Plan D was to go out to the deeper waters on the western shore, and look near schools of Menhaden, and find Striped Bass feeding around them, which had worked yesterday for Pete.
This worked to some extent. A few pods had a few stripers, but eventually we found a large mass of them stacked from top to bottom. Unfortunately, they weren't very hungry, and we only caught a few. Using a snagged Menhaden as live bait brought one big fish to the surface. My butt snagged fish was one of the only legal fish caught there.

 Eventually we lost these fish and couldn't find them again, and headed for home, past "Location X" and the Gas Docks. In this photo, watermen work a pound net, with Dominion's natural gas storage tanks in the back ground
Through Solomons Island harbor, full of millions of dollars worth of boats.

Coasties on patrol.

Old Fuddy Duddy Thinks Modern Singers are Sluts

I can't imagine why: Bosom-boosting corsets, see-through gowns and suspenders: As Shirley Bassey slams female pop stars' skimpy clothes, the WORST celebrity offenders revealed

Her way:

Their way:

Here's Miley in that outfit doing a "song." Definitely NSFW language.

I kind of see where Shirley coming from, even though she's not above showing a little leg:

Linked at Pirate's Cove in the weekly "Sorta Blogless Pinup" and links. Wombat-socho sends the master list "Rule 5 Sunday: Hot Times In Houston" from the road.

Gator vs. Car

Advantage gator.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Just Making Our Brains Work Better at the Beach

Just looking at nature can help your brain work better, study finds
In a study published in the journal Environmental Psychology, the University of Melbourne’s Kate Lee and a group of colleagues found that interrupting a tedious, attention-demanding task with a 40-second “microbreak” — in which one simply looks at a computerized image of a green roof — improved focus as well as subsequent performance on the task.
So if 40 second "microbreak" helps, imagine what an hour does!
Warm, humid, and partly cloudy today. The wind that kept things crisp for the last few days was down to a mere 10 mph from the southwest.

There were a bunch of different butterflies in the dunes, a male Black Swallowtail above, and a pair of American Ladies on the left (I suspect one is a man from the way it followed the other).
A white form Clouded Sulphur on the right (female, by virtue of being white)
A Variegated Frittilary.
An Osprey flew by on the way to the nest with a fish firmly grasped in it's talons. (Click to expand and you can see the fish tail).

Beauty and the Beast. Potpourri

A lot of material today, so lets get going:

Judge orders Hillary Clinton email releases every 30 days
A federal judge issued an order Wednesday requiring the State Department to make public batches of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails every 30 days starting next month.

U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Contreras also set particular targets for the agency to meet each month as it wades through the roughly 30,000 emails totaling about 55,000 pages. (The percentages set for each disclosure can be viewed in the judge's written order, posted here.)

The monthly disclosure essentially splits the difference between the State Department's most recent proposal of releases every 60 days and lawyers for Vice News reporter Jason Leopold, who proposed releases every two weeks.

The State Department initially proposed releasing the vast majority of the emails in a single batch by next January, but Contreras rejected that suggestion, citing the public interest in the materials.
Hillary, of course, is claiming that she would like to release all her emails immediately. That may even be true, since she has already deleted anything that might prove embarrassing to her. The State Dept, though, has it's own interests in mind.

Speaking of deleted email: 2 Of Hillary’s Libya Emails Are Missing. Two doesn't sound so bad, until you realize that these were ones that were already known, by having been released by a hacker:
Sidney Blumenthal emailed Hillary Clinton at least two intelligence reports about Libya which were not included in the trove of 296 emails released by the State Department on Friday.

Clinton has claimed that in December she turned over all official government emails she sent or received from her personal account while in office. In turn, the agency has claimed it turned all Clinton emails related to Libya or Benghazi over to the House Select Committee investigating the Benghazi attack.

But a screenshot of Blumenthal’s email inbox, which the Romanian hacker Guccifer published in March 2013, shows two reports about Libya emailed to Clinton which were not released in Friday’s batch.
Which makes the chance of the emails being released accurately reflecting the truth 0%.

Speaking of Sid "Vicious" Blumenthal, his salary for the Clinton family charity, for his services was a handy 10k a month. Which isn't a lot in government terms, so I's sure it was a part time gig.
Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime Clinton family associate, made $10,000 a month as an employee of the Clinton Foundation while he advised Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to a Thursday report from Politico.

According to the report, which cited "multiple sources familiar with the arrangement," Blumenthal was employed by the foundation full-time from 2009 to 2013 when he became a consultant for the organization, which was founded by former President Bill Clinton. It was during this same time that Blumenthal sent Hillary Clinton, now the front runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, what she described as "unsolicited" memos about Libya, where he was trying to arrange business deal.
Yep; definitely part time.

And where would come up with enough money to pay $120k to Sid for part time work? Funny you should ask, because today it was revealed that FIFA, the world soccer organization recently busted for corruption, paid $50-100k to for "consulting" with Bill:
The embattled Clinton Foundation can add a new name to its long list of donors under scrutiny — the scandal-tarred world soccer federation.
FIFA donated as much as $100,000 to the charity headed by Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, foundation records revealed, with no further details available.

On Wednesday, US authorities indicted 14 soccer officials.

FBI agents arrested the officials meeting in Switzerland, as the head of the Justice Department described a conspiracy of bribery and corruption in the selection of World Cup host countries and sponsors.

The Clinton Foundation, already under fire for accepting multimillion-dollar contributions from nations including Saudi Arabia, disclosed only the range of the contribution — from $50,001 to $100,000.
That's a running start on Sid's salary, anyway.

Remember from yesterday how Bill formed a shadowy shell company designed to funnel money to him in secret?  It was formed two day after Hillary was confirmed as Secretary of State:
The original Associated Press story said that WJC, LLC, the “shell company” in question, was formed in Delaware in 2008.

It’s more interesting when you find out the specific date. I searched the database of the Delaware Department of State’s Division of Corporations. There is one listing for WJC, LLC. According to the information on file, the company was formed December 3, 2008. President Obama had confirmed Hillary Clinton as his choice for secretary of state just two days earlier, on December 1, 2008.

I am not supplying any conclusions here. I’ll simply note that this is a pattern in the ongoing Clinton controversy. For instance, the domain name for, Hillary’s private email system, was registered on January 13, 2009, eight days before the Senate confirmed Clinton as the country’s top diplomat. Why the rush to arrange all these complex and secretive business affairs immediately after Clinton’s future as the most powerful Cabinet member was set in motion?
Just in the nick of time to keep that cash flow going behind the scenes. Quite a coinkydink.

Hillary’s Support of Sleazy Corporate Welfare Is a Political Gift — If the GOP Will Seize It
Hillary Clinton is an artful dodger when it comes to taking positions on lots of issues, but last Friday she opened a clear gap between herself and virtually every possible GOP presidential candidate. Breaking with sincere progressives such as Vermont senator Bernie Sanders, Hillary went out of her way to endorse the Export-Import Bank, a little-known government agency that guarantees loans so that American corporations can sell products overseas. Its charter is set to expire on June 30 unless Congress rescues it from critics who have long opposed its record of funneling the vast majority of its loans to mega-companies such as Boeing, General Electric, and Caterpillar — all of which can easily secure trade financing on their own.

But Hillary appears to have no trouble embracing such corporate welfare. While secretary of state she shilled for the Ex-Im Bank. In 2009, she appeared in Moscow with officials of the Russian airline Rosavia to tout its pursuit of Ex-Im funding. This is how she put it: “This is a shameless pitch for Rosavia — I’ve said what you wanted me to say, Sergey — to buy Boeing aircraft. Right? The Ex-Im Bank would welcome an application for financing from Rosavia to support its purchase of Boeing aircraft, and I hope that on a future visit I’ll see lot of new Rosavia-Boeing planes when I land in Moscow.”
Boeing donated $900,000 to, GE, between $500,000 and $1,000,000 and Caterpillar a measly $1,000, to $5,000. Nothing to see here, move

EPA Lays Claim to the Rest of US Land

Great news: that puddle in your front yard is a federally protected waterway
This one has been coming down the pike for a while now, but there was apparently no way to avoid it. Multiple agencies of the Obama administration, primarily under the EPA, have announced their new Waters of the United States rules and added a variety of “bodies of water” to the existing protected waterways. And you’ll never guess what level of federal intrusion this is adding up to.
The Obama administration issued a rule on Wednesday increasing the number of small bodies of water and wetlands that fall under federal protection, a move that has riled some lawmakers, business executives and farmers who say the rule unnecessarily expands federal bureaucracy.
The rule, issued jointly by the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, is estimated to put about 3% more waterways throughout the U.S. under new federal jurisdiction, which will require more permits for use of those waters and could restrict access altogether, according to the EPA. Agency officials said Wednesday that the rule will protect drinking water supplies for more than 100 million Americans…
“My administration has made historic commitments to clean water, from restoring iconic watersheds like the Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes to preserving more than a thousand miles of rivers and other waters for future generations,” Mr. Obama said in a statement Wednesday. “With today’s rule, we take another step toward protecting the waters that belong to all of us.”
The EPA is pushing back against the very loud protests from farmers, energy developers and property owners upset over this potentially massive expansion, claiming that it was always their right to do this under the Clean Water Act of 1972. And if Obama’s explanation of saying that this applied towatersheds like the Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes were true, nobody would be terribly upset about it. But it’s that “other waters” portion which he slipped in at the end which caught everyone’s attention. I wonder what he meant by that?
The rule will seek to protect only waterways that have physical features of flowing water, according to a fact sheet about the rule.
The physical feature of flowing water? Depending on the conditions, the slope of the land and how much it rains on any given day, that could apply to pretty much anything. The EPA has already said it will include prairie potholes and isolated stretches of cattails. With the right people interpreting it, that wording would apply to roadside ditches. For their part, the American Energy Alliance described it based on looking like a duck, walking like a duck and quacking like a duck.
Just an example, a more or less random shot of from an airplane flying over the desert southwest of the United States:

No water anywhere in sight, but the "physical features of flowing water" everywhere, from the dry lake bed, the arroyos that feed it, and even the erosion on the dry hills.

Now, they may not claim everything immediately; that is not their nature, but when it comes to cases, slowly but surely, guess how they're going to decide.

Are You Ready for the Dino-Chicken?

When Will We See an Actual Dino-Chicken?
Talk of a “chickenosaurus” lit up the science world last week when researchers announced they had modified the beak of a chicken embryo to resemble the snout of its dinosaur ancestors. But although some experts have lauded the feat, a beak is just one of many modifications needed to revert a chicken into a dinosaur.

Dinosaurs ruled the planet for 130 million years, so clearly they knew how to perpetuate themselves, but scientists have not had much to go on, in terms of their exact mechanics for doing the deed.

Given these obstacles, how close are scientists to creating a dino-chicken?
Can I expect a little Velociraptor for Christmas this year? That would be a hit at the beach.

“From a quantitative point of view, we’re 50 percent there,” said Jack Horner, a professor of paleontology at Montana State University and a curator of paleontology at the Museum of the Rockies.

Horner has long supported the idea of modifying a chicken to look like a dinosaur, and unlike the researchers on the latest study, he actually wants to raise a live one. And why stop there? By understanding how and when to modify certain molecular mechanisms, countless changes could be within reach. As Horner pointed out, a glow-in-the-dark unicorn is not out of the question.
A glow in the dark unicorn might even be easier. Start with a horse, add a little Narwhale, and steal a few genes from fire flies. I'm kind of surprised they aren't in the Hammacher Schlemmer catalog already.
There are four major modifications needed to make a so-called chickenosaurus, Horner said. To turn a chicken into a dinosaurlike beast, scientists would have to give it teeth and a long tail, and revert its wings back into arms and hands.

The creature would also need a modified mouth — a feat accomplished by the researchers who did this latest study, he said.

“This dino-chicken project — we can liken it to the moon project,” Horner told Live Science. “We know we can do it; it’s just there are … some huge hurdles.”
10 years? 5?

Featured at Pirate's Cove in the weekly "Sorta Blogless Pinup" and links.

Midnite Music - "Oh My God"

With a cartoon of Lily Allen, who I recently featured:

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Elections Have Consequences

You’re 45% more likely to be murdered in de Blasio’s Manhattan
Sixteen people were killed around the borough between the first of the year and Sunday. Over the same period last year, the figure was 11. That’s an increase of about 45 percent.

Shootings in the borough have also soared.

There have been 50 “shooting incidents’’ since Jan. 1, compared with 31 in the same time period in 2014 — an increase of about 38 percent. Some of these “incidents’’ involved more than one victim.
The number of shooting victims nearly doubled, from 33 to 61.

“City Hall better wake up soon,” a police source said. “When murders and shootings go up in Manhattan, everyone is affected,’’ he said, pointing out that crime impacts business, tourism and the city’s economy as a whole.

He said there are a variety of reasons, from the plummeting number of “stop-and-frisks’’ to the fact that the city needs more officers. “The cops’ hands are tied,’’ he said.
It's generally acknowledged that one reason De Blasio was elected was dissatisfaction with the police, and "stop-and-frisk" policy in particular. As the Curmudgeon Sage of Baltimore once noted:
Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.
And speaking of the gem of the Patapsco:

Baltimore's deadliest month in 15 years: May counts 35 homicides, so far
Baltimore is seeing its deadliest month in 15 years after an outbreak of Memorial Day weekend violence left nine people dead in 29 shootings.

So far, Baltimore has tallied 35 homicides this month, police said.

The last time Baltimore saw that many homicides was December 1999, police said.

The only month to surpass 35 homicides was the prior month, November 1999, when 36 homicides were recorded, according to police statistics since 1999. That year was also Baltimore's deadliest in the past 16 with 305 homicides, police figures show.
It's probably unfair to directly link the sudden increase in homicides in Baltimore to the elected officials in Baltimore, it's almost certainly still in turmoil from the riots after the Freddy Gray, but clearly the Democratic and largely black administration in charge in Baltimore has not been able to quell the troubles there.

Wednesday 05/21/15 Beach Report

The temperature and humidity are slowly rising to summertime levels here in Slower Maryland, 80+ off the water, and partly cloudy, with the same 15-2- mph south wind we've have for 3 days now.
Can't you read the sign? To be fair, it's a little faded.
I would think the sand would be more comfortable for sun bathing, but the breeze was probably better out on the jetty.
 The dog wants in on the actions.
That's a lot of ink!
Tooth hunting was rather poor (11 total, with Georgia getting 6) due to crashing waves covering the best zone, but I did get this small, but perfect Mako tooth.
I also saw my first "for sure" Spicebush Swallowtail butterfly, who posed obligingly while "puddling." It is almost certainly a male, both from the puddling habit, and the greener back
You can also see the diagnostic "blue comet" amid the orange spots on the underside of the rear wing.

Dark clouds are rolling. . .  It rained just a bit as we arrived home.