Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Love ya, Al

I know for some of my readers the global-warming topic is as fresh and exciting as yesterday's underwear (your own, JC.) But I want some sort of record of my non-belief, so that when my children are grown and everyone is claiming they never bought into the AGW hype, I'll actually have proof.

I stumbled onto a site that isn't especially new with a point-by-point discrediting of Al Gore's Nobel-winning Inconvenient Propaganda. Al and I have had our differences since I voted for him to be President (wait til you tell your kids that you were once forced to choose between Al Gore and George W. Bush - history will prove them to be a couple of the biggest buffoons ever to walk the halls of the White House.) I've even called him a bold-faced mother-fucking liar.

Amazingly, this assessment underestimates just how self-serving An Inconvenient Truth actually is. Aside from the $60 million gross and the $100k that Gore charges for public appearances to stoke AGW fears, Gore is an owner and chairman of Generation Investment Management, a corporation that offers consulting for dealing with carbon cap-and-trade legislation. Seems like a wasted investment if the U.S. never implements such legislation, don't you think?

The bottom line remains the same. The warming that we are experiencing is often overstated, not unusual in the history of the Earth, and is almost entirely caused by factors that are not man-made. Solar activity (at an 11000-year high) and oceanic currents (like the PDO and ENSO - see the discrediting link for details) explain the temperature fluctuations over thousands of years without cherry-picking data or discarding contradictory evidence.

Man can adversely affect the environment, and it's important to understand and mitigate the consequences of overpopulation, overfishing, overfarming, deforestation, diverting waterways, etc. But focusing on non-solutions like carbon caps and ethanol only exacerbates man's environmental impact (how much forest is being cleared right now, worldwide, because of artificially inflated corn and grain prices?) To steal a quote from Ponder the Maunder:

You will not stop malaria or other diseases by reducing atmospheric CO2. But if you spend all of your resources on reducing CO2 then all of the other environmental problems created by man will not be resolved.

But never fear, Generation IM and its bloated, Bill-Gates-wannabe leader will save us from ourselves. And make Al a boatload of money at the same time.

Friday, February 22, 2008

This just in!

I personally find this difficult to swallow, but it seems that old, powerful men are attracted to hot young women - and even stranger - they are sometimes tempted to have sex with them.

Scandalous! Although we live in a country where 60% of men and 40% of women are fooling around on their spouse* the critics are lining up to attack McCain for (possibly) porking a blonde who's half his age.

I wonder how high those numbers would be if all married men were routinely subjected to a similar temptation. Late at night, on a private jet, you drink a few to unwind after a long day...and this much younger girl, your lobbyist 'friend', sidles up next to you. Bear in mind, she's paid by the amount of access she can generate for her clients. How many sexually functioning men - the straight kind, not the married gay kind - are saying 'no' here? Exactly. I love my wife, but my best chance of coming out of that unscathed is to avoid the situation completely (on a smaller scale, of course, I don't have a senator's access to young hotties or private jets.) It doesn't seem all that far to fall.

We've recently endured scandals by esteemed Congressmen who were IMing dirty fantasies to underage boys while they were supposed to be voting, or eliciting gay sex from strangers in an airport bathroom. God forbid that McCain might have engaged in a little afternoon delight with a 40-year-old professional whore lobbyist that he'd worked with for years. Somehow, despite this huge personal failing, I expect he'll be able to do a better job than the idiot who's been living in the White House for the last 8 years.

Get over it, hypocrites.

*This is a fascinating statistic. It is quoted ubiquitously, generally attributed to the Monogamy Myth book, which itself offers no conclusive evidence for these numbers. "Numerous studies" and "recent studies" are cited, but nothing concrete. Amazingly, this lack of evidence has done nothing to stop this statistic from being endlessly repeated. The actual numbers are hard to pinpoint, since their accuracy relies on self-reporting, but are probably closer to 40% and 30%. Still, I chose to cite the numbers that made my point stronger.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Hockey update

Sad excuse for a post, but guess what? I'm self-absorbed and lazy. Sucks for you.

My good team remains undefeated, although we're clearly not the dominant force we might have imagined ourselves to be. Our last two games were a tie (after blowing a 4-1 lead) followed up by last night's nailbiting 11-10 win.

Yes, 11-10. And I play defense.

I blame it on our goalie. John, if you're reading this, you know I love you, but that was possibly the worst display of goaltending I've seen since the night you forgot to show up and I was forced to put on the pads. The score at the end of the first period was 7-6, and there might have been a total of eight saves between both keepers. We're not talking about point-blank top-shelf where-mama-hides-the-cookie-jar laser shots, but dribblers from outside the zone that somehow sneaked through. Just ugly. Additionally, they scored three goals that deflected off our defensemen, which isn't the goalie's fault but just awful luck.

It did set up an exciting finish, however. Trailing 10-7 with less than five minutes to play, we mounted an impressive comeback. We scored twice to make it 10-9, and then with 0:55 left we were awarded a penalty shot and converted for the tie. With only 0:11 remaining, we scored the game-winner and improved our record to 6-0-1.

In other news, it seems that Deppen has finally joined the blogosphere. I predict a total of four posts before he loses interest (he has two already) so make sure you get your fill of the elusive Deppen before he goes back into hiding.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Movie Review: There Will Be Blood

I'm going to need a lot of superlatives for this one. Time to crack open the thesaurus.

There Will Be Blood centers on two narcissists - an oil man who must win at everything, regardless of the cost, and a preacher striving for personal glory. Their differences and similarities are explored through a series of emotional confrontations spanning two decades.

Daniel Day Lewis portrays the oil man magnificently. This is no stock character, but one with a complex range of emotions and motivations, and Lewis nails them all. The original score accents his performance, hinting at inner turmoil and stress. Light is expertly manipulated to produce the desired imagery and mood. The scenery is both bleak and majestic, perfectly suiting the overall message of the film.

I'd like to describe, in detail, the genius of specific scenes, but I'm afraid I'd spoil too much. There Will Be Blood is a work of art. There is nothing accidental or haphazard about it. Even if you don't normally enjoy dark stories with nary a hero in sight, you can still appreciate the artistic and intellectual purpose with which it's been crafted.

But, if perchance, you are a misanthrope like me - well, then this movie might just speak to your greyish, plastic soul. The confrontations between these two hate-filled characters made me giddy. I can't remember ever leaving a theater feeling so happy and complete.

Go see the movie. It's slow at times, but well worth your patience. Easily, it's my favorite film in the past 2-3 years.

See, Sherry? I do like stuff once in a while.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The Huckster

There's something scary about the South.

I love warm weather, steak for breakfast, ubiquitous sweet tea, and women who wear dresses to college football games. But the political stylings of them good ol' boys make me think (and wish) that we live in a different country.

McCain won the Northeast, as expected, with comfortable margins of victory in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, and Delaware. Those margins of victory were over second-place finisher Mitt Romney, who only managed to carry Massachusettes in this part of the country.

Totally different story in the South, however, with evangelical zealot Mike Huckabee carrying Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Mississippi. I can't imagine the intellectual bankruptcy that would allow me to vote for a hateful, gay-bashing moron, who believes the world is 6000 years old. One of the analysts on CNN last night joked that "Nobody is more conservative than Huckabee. He doesn't believe in evolution or gravity or photosynthesis or anything." (I'm not sure if he watches Family Guy, but coincidentally, earlier in the evening TBS showed the episode where Mel Gibson walks off Mount Rushmore, and Peter declares "Christians don't believe in gravity.")

Luckily, Huckabee's appeal is so limited outside of the South, he has almost no chance of winning the nomination. But I'm embarrassed for my countrymen who think our country needs a president even more evangelical and less rational than the monkey.