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July 2018

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Separated at Birth?

On the left, media darling and Democrat nominee for Congress from New York, socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. On the right, the internet's favorite Overly Attached Girlfriend.

 

Admittedly, the resemblance is mostly in the eyes. Let's ask Willem Dafoe what he thinks. Willem?

We'll, uh, we'll take that as a yes.

©   Kevin McGehee


There's a Rumor in the Air

On Wednesday, August begins.

The following Friday, school will be in session hereabouts.

And when school is in session, can football season be far behind?

Apparently some college football schedules are getting pushed earlier in much the same way as school calendars; the University of Wyoming football team will be in Albuquerque Las Cruces, New Mexico on Saturday, August 25 to play the New Mexico Lobos State Aggies. That's a whole 15 days before the NFL season starts (not counting pre-season games, which tend to begin in August -- but the last I checked none of those, except the Hall of Fame game, had been scheduled for TV just yet).

If football is on, can fall be far behind?

The air -- which remains hot and humid, it still being July -- had no comment.

©   Kevin McGehee


It Begins

The final slate for the fall election here in Georgia has been all but settled, and to my surprise all of the Republican candidates I favored in last Tuesday's runoff won their respective nominations.

Two months ago I was fairly confident Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle would be the nominee for Governor -- but his cynical campaign strategy and insider reputation, along with some ill-considered words to a rival gubernatorial hopeful in what he, admittedly, had reason to believe was a private conversation, all conspired to put him in voter-opinion freefall leading up to the runoff balloting. Having President Trump endorse his runoff opponent didn't help.

Outgoing Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be the GOP standardbearer in November with a definitely conservative message, going up against former state legislator Stacey Abrams, a Democrat who has been tacking left in deep-red Georgia since winning her party's nomination last May.

During much of the vote count on primary night, state legislator Geoff Duncan was in third place and seemed unlikely to be in the runoff. He's now -- barely -- the nominee for Lieutenant Governor. Should we call him "Landslide Geoff"?

I worried after the primary that the runoff for the Secretary of State nomination "could get hairy," but Brad Raffensperger won handily. Hopefully this sets him up well to face former Athens-area congressman John Barrow this fall.

©   Kevin McGehee


Bug or Feature?

Bug.

HOT WATER HEAT! Rustic 5 bed 3 bath home situated on 5 acres of land is your dream come true. Upper level features hw bamboo flooring, kitchen w/ SS appls, lg island & TONS of storage. Open floor plan, dining w/ spectacular views & lots of natural light, lvg rm w/wood fp & main floor laundry. Basement boasts new carpet, huge fam rm, lg master w/ spacious walk in closet & pvt bath & 2 add beds. 30x60 shop, paddock, coop, poison spider water, lots of wildlife, mature landscaping and BREATHTAKING mtn views.

Those damn hipsters will drink anything.

(Non-Caps-Lock emphasis in excerpt added. "Poison Spider" is a creek west of Casper; I suspect the property either has irrigation rights from the creek, or the notation may refer to a local water district.)

©   Kevin McGehee


I Hate Cancer

It took my grandfather, though thankfully not before I had a chance to meet him. It did take Mrs. McG's grandfather before I had a chance to meet him. It took her mother three years ago, far too soon.

And now this. I may not have ever linked to him much or talk to him much, but some friendships are like that -- even online. It's a blessing just knowing they're there, and an agony to imagine one day they might not be.

Got the prayers thing going, LMC.

©   Kevin McGehee


My Musical Ear Syndrome Just Took a Dark Turn

First, a bit of exposition:

Musical Ear Syndrome is a relatively common phenomenon where you hear non-tinnitus, phantom sounds that are not of a psychiatric nature. Typically, you would hear what sounds like music, singing or voices. If you hear music or singing, it may be vague or clear. If you hear voices, typically they sound vague—like a TV playing in another room. For example, you might “know” it is a man announcing a game, but you can’t understand any/many words.

Now here’s where it gets really interesting. There are two categories of MES. In the first category, there is no apparent external stimulus for the phantom sounds your are hearing (a truly phantom sound). However, in the second category, the phantom music or singing is triggered by an unrelated external background sound whether the person is aware of this sound or not.

For example, you begin hearing music when you are near a fan. The fan is not producing music. It is just producing fan noise. However, your brain modifies this fan noise so you perceive it as music.

I do have tinnitus, but the ringing is at a very high pitch, and the noises that inspire my MES tend to be much lower. For some time the garage door opener used to remind me of Johnny Cash's "God's Gonna Cut You Down" -- the part that used to play over the end of Jeep's TV ads, but that's more in the way of a "hum a few bars and I'll fake it" kind of inspiration. The linked article mentions fan noise, and that's what really sets my MES's muse off and running.

Usually the result is nothing more than a bass line or growly guitar riff, something that will remind me of a song I've heard before but just can't seem to pin down. Other times though, it actually seems to write a song. And that's what was happening this evening.

This time there was even a lead singer and backup singers, and they were continuously repeating a chorus that went like so:

I'm gonna love you for the rest of your life tonight.

Is it just me, or does that sound like a threat?

©   Kevin McGehee


Life Imitates The Onion™

I mean, seriously? I've seen this LITO trope elsewhere, but I've never seen it so blatant as in the description of this controversy.

The letter, which has been signed by more than 600 people as of press time, argues that by rejecting workshops such as “How to Be a White Ally in Medieval Studies 101,” “Toxic Medievalisms,” and “Intersectionality and the Medieval Romance,” the ICMS organizers are hurting scholars of color and excluding their perspectives.

“The rejection of multiple sessions co-sponsored by Medievalists of Color (MOC) in particular minimizes the intellectual guidance that scholars of color would provide at the conference, when these scholars are already severely underrepresented in the field,” the letter protests.

[...]

In an effort to influence the topics of discussion at the upcoming conference, the BABEL Working Group demands that the ICMS organizers allow at least two of the previously rejected workshops to be added to the 2019 schedule, threatening to withdraw thousands of dollars in annual support if the ICMS does not comply.

“If ICMS chooses not to recognize the special urgency of supporting the Medievalists of Color this year…the BABEL Working Group does not anticipate putting more of our collective resources into the Congress,” the open letter warns.

That group's name seems almost designed to be MOCkable, and mockery is what this item calls for -- as seen, of course, in the comment thread here. Given that and the histrionic tone of the letter, I'm going to take a step or two back from this -- just in case it turns out to be a delicious, satirical hoax.

I kind of hope it does. It would restore some small amount of my oft-rebuked faith in humanity.

©   Kevin McGehee


Going Off Half-Cocked

Our local sheriff's nomination for United States Marshal is still working its way toward Senate confirmation, but at least one sheriff-wannabe has already got at least one campaign sign up that I've seen.

Confirmation may be a slam-dunk, but it's bad form to jump into a campaign for a special election that hasn't even been called yet. I think that if indeed Sheriff Yeager does become Marshal Yeager, this one candidate -- and any others who also jump the gun -- will be at a distict disadvantage for my vote.

©   Kevin McGehee


Why Do Environmentalists Hate Science? (2)

"Conservation groups" are ginning up hysteria about a single bear to try to invalidate all of the science already in use for bear management in that same area.

The confirmation of a previously unrecorded female grizzly bear death in 2017 should cause the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission to stop part of a hunt planned for Sept. 1, six conservation groups say.

Wyoming set its grizzly hunt rules based on flawed information available in January, the groups said in a letter to the state commission and department director Scott Talbott on Monday. Officials have confirmed that the January information was inaccurate and that at least one more female grizzly bear than previously counted died in a key census area.

The new information “has serious implications for the hunt,” said Bonnie Rice, senior representative, Greater Yellowstone-Northern Rockies regions for Sierra Club. “The department should not be holding a hunt … in the [core Yellowstone] Demographic Monitoring Area,” she told WyoFile in an interview.

The inaccurate count is the cudgel they're using to try to stop this hunt -- in an area where they're simultaneously opposing efforts to improve the accuracy of the count.

©   Kevin McGehee


WARNING: Don't Watch This Video at Bedtime

It will give you nightmares.

I can only think of three possible innocent reasons why Peter Strzok was behaving that way in front of a congressional committee -- and TV cameras.

  1. He had taken something he shouldn't have.
  2. He had not taken something he should have.
  3. He was having a strzok.

As someone else has already noted, this is the face of your Deep State. If he had spun his head completely around and then flooded the committee room with pea soup, it would only have been gilding the lily.

©   Kevin McGehee


Let Me Introduce You to a Thing Called 'Karma'

One way in which karma acts is by holding you accountable in exactly the same way it held other people accountable, who did exactly the same thing you're doing.

Although in some cases "karma" goes by other names, such as "the law."

The new and worrying trend here for people like Monaco is the strategy of repurposing a tactic meant to fight racists for the arrest of people on the opposite side of the ideological spectrum.

This refers to laws like one adopted in New York in 1845 or, as Monaco complains, ones adopted in the South in the early 20th Century against members of the Ku Klux Klan. One of the latter was used last April to arrest masked counter-demonstrators in Newnan, Georgia -- and inspired almost identical whining from Antifa cadres.

If you don't want to be treated like the Democratic Party shock troops of a hundred years ago, don't behave like the Democratic Party shock troops of 100 years ago. It's as simple as that.

©   Kevin McGehee


Ends and Odds

I recently stumbled upon a way, finally, to download and archive my emails from the server, and have relieved said server of some five years' worth of accumulated correspondence. Admittedly, I'd cleaned out vast amounts of vapid ephemera, nearly all of it generated by yours truly (nearly everything I receive that fits that description gets jettisoned on first reading), over the course of those five years, but that still left some 65 megabytes I've deemed worth preserving that no longer burdens the server.

And given that I have lost archived data in the past, I've taken the step of zipping and copying this archive to multiple cloud accounts. I've had live-sync utilities glitch and turn gigabytes of saved-up data (including more than a decade of blog posts) into free-floating, disassociated ones and zeroes, and I didn't like it. Therefore I am not relying on any one cloud account to safeguard this data.

Mrs. McG has another appointment soon like the one that culminated in her spending several days in an Atlanta hospital for open-heart surgery early last year, but we have been assured by the referring cardiologist that déjà vu is beyond the realm of plausibility. This would be more reassuring if it weren't for the fact scientific studies suggest that déjà vu itself -- the sensation of having previously experienced something that is actually occurring for the first time -- is "an anomaly of memory," meaning that if Mrs. McG gets dragged away again for surgery it literally won't be déjà vu because it would be something that has in fact happened before.

What is reassuring about it is that the cardiologist did not actually use the words déjà vu. I don't know why I remembered it that way.

Update: No déjà vu, either way.

Is it just me, or has it become more and more apparent that the "blue wave" touted by Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) for this year's congressional elections is more likely to be a riptide? I know, I know: "don't get cocky."

©   Kevin McGehee


Well, DUH!

Any sixth-grader could have told them this: "Nuts May Boost Male Fertility: Study."

What? Not those kinds of nuts? Ohhhhh-h-h-h-h...

Paris (AFP) - Eating nuts "significantly" boosted the number and health of sperm in young men in a scientific trial, researchers said Wednesday.

The findings "support a beneficial role for chronic nut consumption in sperm quality," they said, but stressed the study participants were all healthy, apparently fertile men.

The potential benefits of nuts for men struggling with fertility have yet to be probed.

Huh-huh-huh. Probed. Huh-huh-huh.

After 14 weeks, the nut group "had significant improvements in their sperm count, vitality, motility (movement) and morphology (shape)" -- all associated with male fertility, said a statement.

"Moreover, the subjects in the nut group also showed a significant reduction in their levels of sperm DNA fragmentation, a parameter closely associated with male infertility."

Huh-huh-huh. Nut group. Huh-huh-huh.

Why do I get the feeling the reporter had entirely too much fun writing that? Eh, maybe because I had entirely too much fun blogging it.

©   Kevin McGehee


The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America

In honor of the holiday, and of the courage of those who made it possible, a classic:

In Congress, July 4, 1776

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness; that, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and, when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them, and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing, with manly firmness, his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining, in the mean time, exposed to all the dangers of invasions from without and convulsions within.

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.

He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies, without the consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the military independent of, and superior to, the civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our Constitution and unacknowledged by our laws, giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us;

For protecting them, by a mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states;

For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world;

For imposing taxes on us without our consent;

For depriving us, in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury;

For transporting us beyond seas, to be tried for pretended offenses;

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries, so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these colonies;

For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments;

For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation, and tyranny already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow-citizens, taken captive on the high seas, to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.

He has excited domestic insurrection among us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes, and conditions.

In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms; our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have we been wanting in our attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them, from time to time, of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity; and we have conjured them, by the ties of our common kindred, to disavow these usurpations which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too, have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity which denounces our separation, and hold them as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.

WE, THEREFORE, the REPRESENTATIVES of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, in General Congress assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name and by the authority of the good people of these colonies solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved; and that, as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

©   Kevin McGehee


Watch Out, Young'Uns

As I've aged and my memories have begun to fade, I've found that the internet allows me to remember what I've forgotten. I've recently referred to the internet as my second brain, jokingly, to my brother -- but as time wears on it'll become less of a joke.

I'm already wondering just how out of touch and feeble-minded I'd already feel if I couldn't look up things that no amount of brain-wracking can manage to rustle up from my onboard gray matter.

Meanwhile, the technology gets faster and the volumes of information, from eternal truths to fake news, and all the vacuous memes in between, get more complete (and repetitive). Maybe even when I'm a drooling, senile old lump, the internet will still make me seem as "with it" as any real teenager of that era.

Hmmm. That would actually be kind of sad, wouldn't it?

©   Kevin McGehee


"Don't You Roll Your Eyes When I'm Shaking My Finger in Your Face!"

What must it feel like to be an attorney arguing a case before the jury, knowing that every single one of them has tuned you out -- not just you and your side of the debate, but the debate itself? The whole topic?

Increasingly, that's how this nation's ruling elite feels, especially since November 2016. Instapundit has pointed out repeatedly in the past week or so that "there’s a huge gap between elite and mainstream opinion" on immigration policy, but if you look at the survey results going back many, many years, it's also true of, for example, climate policy. The elites keep arguing, trying to win over the public, and nobody's listening.

That's why they were already going off the rails even before the last presidential election, and it's why they've gone positively berserk since then.

Their pre-2016 behavior is, of course, why 2016 happened, and afterward they've acted as if it's their mission to justify the election result. When Hillary Clinton called half of all Trump supporters a "basket of deplorables," it was positively mild compared to what they're saying now.

Getting back to my attorney metaphor: if you've ever watched lawyer shows on TV you know that an attorney who senses that he's losing the jury comes up with some way to change the momentum, to regain their attention and refocus it in a way that benefits his client. What he doesn't do is climb up on the table and start yelling insults at them. He doesn't track them down at home and stage demonstrations on their front porches. He doesn't ambush them in their yards and beat them up or try to shoot them at softball practice.

That would get him disbarred and -- one should hope -- thrown in jail.

The Democrats and certain elite Republicans have spent the past 20 months trying to persuade America to restore them to power by acting like people who should never again be given even as much responsibility as a middle-school hall monitor.

This is why people like Roger Simon say the Democratic Party must have a death wish. I'm not so sure about that; I think it's the natural consequence of emptying and closing down all the maximum-security mental institutions.

©   Kevin McGehee



 
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July 2018

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Original content and design © 2018 Kevin McGehee. Images and excerpts are © their respective owners.