December 30, 2008

Things I’d Like To Post About Today ….. (123008, Morning)

Filed under: TILTpatBIDHAT — Tom @ 8:09 am

….. But I Don’t Have Any Time For:

  • My goodness, he’s not even inaugurated, and he’s already whining (HT Small Dead Animals) about being in the media bubble. Challenge: Name one example of George Bush (not his staff, not other family members, not fellow party members, not pundits) whining.
  • Kurt at FundMastery strengthens a point I made two weeks ago (“Don’t have all of your money with one adviser, especially a long ranger who has control over generating account statements”) about why Bernard Madoff was able to make off with so much investor dough (my bold) — “….. the scheme was possible only because the Madoff firm was a brokerage firm that created its own client statements.” He also has a pic of the kind of org chart with the control structure and separation of duties required to prevent, absent massive collusion that could almost never be sustained, an institutional version of what Madoff did.
  • In addition to Ohio, Oregon has a Governor Ted. Oregon’s Ted Kulongoski wants to slap a mileage tax on the state’s drivers using GPS tracking. Suggestion: Oregonians should consider voting with their feet …. and their wheels. Great supplemental point from a commenter at the link: Out-of-state drivers will avoid the tax.
  • Caroline Kennedy has received the coveted Rosa Ortiz endorsement.
  • Patrick Poole’s latest at Pajamas Media is a blockbuster — “Israel Targets Terror Labs Funded by U.S. Islamic Group.” That “group” is in the Columbus (OH) suburb of Dublin. Question for Gov. Ted Strickland — Is this or is this not unacceptable? How many terror-funding members of Arab Student Aid International (ASAI) were at the CAIR Banquet you attended in June 2007?

Couldn’t Help But Comment ….. (123008, Morning)

Old Media Head-Bang Alert — Sarah Palin is popular and admired (HT Instapundit): “Word came this weekend that a new USA Today – Gallup Poll found the 44-year-old Palin, a mother of five, is the nation’s second most-admired woman, behind only Hillary Clinton and ahead of someone named Oprah Winfrey.” Palin, unlike the other two women, hasn’t promoted two books by congenital fibbers (Hillary — hers and Bill’s; Oprah — “A Million Little Pieces” and, just recently “Angel at the Fence,” a truly dreadful hoax about a supposed Holocaust-related romance, and which, sadly, was a Positivity post in its very early stages at BizzyBlog in March 2006). I’ve noted that it’s a hoax at my post; Oprah hasn’t gotten around to it yet.

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It’s going to be hard to make this not look like sour grapes, but I’ll try. For the first time since I’ve been blogging, BizzyBlog is not a finalist for Best Business Blog.

The breaking of the three-year string seems odd for four reasons:

  1. One would think that almost a year of exposure from a weekly Pajamas Media column that has been about some biz, econ, or political econ topic over 80% of the time would answer any “you write too much about politics and media bias” objection.
  2. The nominating page shows BizzyBlog with the second-highest number of “seconds” to its original nomination (11; the highest was Suitably Flip at 26; third place had 6).
  3. The second-oddest thing is that Club for Growth, which has won the past three times out (2007; 2006; 2005), was nominated, but wasn’t selected as a finalist.
  4. But the oddest thing is this — Of the 10 finalists, only five were nominated at all (Suitably Flip, Clean Techies, The Simple Dollar, Deep Capture, and Smart Bear). The five others (Econbrowser, Silicon Valley Insider, A Fistful of Euros, Seth’s Blog, Ask A Manager) weren’t nominated.

But this is not the time or place to pick any further nits. I congratulate the finalists, urge readers to cast informed votes, and that is that.

Now to yours truly’s recommendations in other selected categories (links to ballots don’t exist as of when this post was prepared):

  • Best Blog (there seem to be a lot of omissions in this category) — Hot Air
  • Best Individual Blog — Anchoress
  • Best Comic Strip — Day by Day
  • Best Conservative Blog — Though at least half are deserving, I’m casting my lot with American Thinker, because of the depth and variety. There should be a category for Story of the Year, which would go to Pamela at Atlas Shrugs for the mountain of work she did on the Obama Campaign’s Credit-Card Crackup.
  • Best Military Blog — Michael Yon should be in the Best Individual Blog category, but since he’s not, he gets the nod (barely) over Blackfive.
  • Best Law Blog — Volokh Conspiracy
  • Best Science Blog — With a few good globaloney debunkers, this is a tough call. Flip a coin between Climate Audit and Watt’s Up With That.
  • Best Podcast — Pundit Review
  • Best Video Blog — Ms. Underestimated

Also — How Iowahawk isn’t a Best Humor Blog finalist, and how Instapundit isn’t a Best Individual Blog finalist, both escape me. Update, Jan. 6, 2009: Found him — Instapundit is a finalist in the “Best Major Blog” category.

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Tony Blankley notes a disturbing “education” trend: “….. textbooks relate Christian and Jewish religious traditions as stories attributed to some source (for example, “According to the New Testament “), while Islamic traditions are related as indisputable historical facts.”

Okay, here’s another indisputable fact about certain practitioners of Islam near Toledo:

….. my former “Palestinian” student-neighbors purposely showed me a newsletter from the Islamic Center in Perrysburg, Ohio that had a story from the Haddith (sic) — sayings attributed to Mohammad — that spoke of a war in the last days between Jews and Muslims, and how Jews would hide behind trees and the trees would say, “There’s a Jew behind me, kill him!” except for one tree that would shelter the Jew.

Yes, that’s the same Hadith that got Imam Ahmed Alzaree into trouble when he tried to become the spiritual leader at the Islamic Center of Cleveland in the fall of 2007.

The popularity of that Hadith does more than a little damage to the claim that Islam is a “religion of peace.”

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First GM gets bailed out, and now GMAC.

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Paul Krugman thinks state governments should be spending more, not less. The idea would have some credibility if states ever economized during prosperous times. But they rarely do.

Positivity: Almost unheard-of: Boy Scout earns all 121 badges

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:57 am

From Long Island, NY:

Monday, December 29, 2008

A Long Island teenager has earned all 121 merit badges offered by the Boy Scouts of America. It’s an accomplishment the local arm of the organization calls “an almost unheard-of feat.” Oceanside resident Shawn Goldsmith earned his final badge _ for bugling _ in time for his 18th birthday in November. He far surpassed the 21 badges required to achieve the elite rank of Eagle Scout.

He said he took about five years to earn his first 62 badges and then nearly doubled that number in a matter of months. He did it with the encouragement of his grandmother, who died shortly before he reached his goal. …..

Go here for the rest of the story.