March 28, 2014

A Putrrhic Victory?

The Spectator has an interesting read by Newsweek’s former Moscow bureau chief, Owen Matthews, who tells us not to worry. In the long run, Putin's actions in Crimea will not be to Russia's advantage.

In a nutshell, Crimea is a worrisome carbuncle on Ukraine's backside. Cut it off, get your political and economic systems fixed and the Ukes will be a lot better off. And please, stop already with the mail order bride scams.

[...] Let Crimea go: it will be the making of Ukraine and the end of Vladimir Putin. Without Crimea, there will never again be a pro-Moscow government in Kiev. Ukraine will have a chance to become a governable country — a strongly pro-European one with a Russian minority of around 15 per cent. Putin will have gained Crimea but lost Ukraine for ever. And without Ukraine, as former US national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski famously said, ‘Russia can no longer be an empire.’

[...] Thanks to Putin’s rash decision to occupy Crimea, not just the EU but its most powerful members — notably Germany, the UK, France and Poland — realise that supporting Ukraine is no longer about handouts but principle. Countries that strive towards European values — and suffer for it — should be rewarded and protected. Angela Merkel, the European leader who knows Putin best and is usually the most conciliatory towards Russia, told the Bundestag last week that he was ‘on a different planet’. Brussels has hurried to offer an amended Association Agreement; the US has backed a generous bailout from the International Monetary Fund.

[...] What’s more, in taking Crimea Putin has made himself a hostage to Kiev. Putin’s main economic leverage is that he sits on Ukraine’s gas pipelines: but now Kiev sits on Crimea’s road, rail, water and power. And unlike the gas wars that the Kremlin launched against Ukraine in 2005 and 2009, which cut off Moscow’s European customers, a Ukrainian blockade of Crimea will hurt only Crimeans.

There's a lot more here.

Sports Wisdom

"I won't know until my barber tells me on Monday."
- Knute Rockne, when asked why Notre Dame had lost a game

"I tell him 'Attaway to hit, George.'"
- Jim Frey, K.C. Royals manager when asked what advice he gives George Brett on hitting

"I learned a long time ago that 'minor surgery' is when they do the operation on someone else, not you."
- Bill Walton, PortlandTrial Blazers

"Our biggest concern this season will be diaper rash."
- George MacIntyre, Vanderbilt football coach surveying the team roster that included 26 freshmen and 25 sophomores.

"The only difference between me and General Custer is that I have to watch the films on Sunday."
- Rick Venturi, Northwestern football coach

"My knees look like they lost a knife fight with a midget."
- E.J. Holub, Kansas City Chiefs linebacker regarding his 12 knee operations

H/T Theo Spark

And something for naval aviators.

The three best things in life are a good landing, a good orgasm, and a good bowel movement. The night carrier landing is one of the few opportunities in life to experience all three at the same time.
- Author Unknown

Another Top Ten List

Here's another top ten list for 2013 - countries with the most executions.

In order of ascending executions:

Country        Executions
10 Vietnam 7
9 Japan 8
8 Yemen 13
7 Sudan 21
6 Somalia 34
5 USA 39
4 Saudi Arabia  79
3 Iraq 169
2 Iran 369
1 China 1500

Commies keep it quiet, No one really knows how many were executed in Vietnam and especially in China; it's a closely guarded state secret, but estimates place it somewhere between lots and lots to who knows. When you have nearly 1.5 billion people to mess with you can get careless... I used 1500 for China because they have soldiers practicing mass executions. I have a sneaking suspicion that I severely underestimated the Chinese.

The list was compiled by Amnesty International. and was heralded by a UK Telegraph article as the "ten most brutal places in the world" (*cough* bul...hit *cough*). But look again, this time at the number of executions per 100,000 population.

Country     Rate/100000
10 Japan 0.006
9 Vietnam 0.007
8 USA 0.012
7 Yemen 0.055
6 Sudan 0.059
5 China 0.111
4 Saudi Arabia  0.289
3 Somalia 0.326
2 Iran 0.456
1 Iraq 0.519

The allegedly bloodthirsty US has a rate only twice that of the peace loving Japanese. And of course the Telegraph ignores it's own article concerning a UN report that the UK is one of the most violent places in the world.

March 27, 2014

The Hornet's Nest

There is a movie coming out this Spring about the war in Afghanistan.
There are no actors, only soldiers.
It's the real deal.

Top Ten Small Cities To Aviod

The Movoto real estate blog has this to say:
After studying more than 200 small cities, we’ve concluded that Wilmington, DE is the most dangerous in terms of crime. It’s joined in this dubious honor by nine other places to comprise our 10 most dangerous small cities in America:

1. Wilmington, DE
2. Canton, OH
3. Jackson, TN
4. Rocky Mount, NC
5. North Little Rock, AR
6. Pensacola, FL
7. Daytona Beach, FL
8. Homestead, FL
8. Lauderhill, FL
10. Warner Robins, GA

Story here.

March 26, 2014

A Nation Of Felons

There are so many laws in this country that a lawyer has recently wrote a book detailing how the average American commits three felonies a day. There are so many unknown laws on the books that any one can risk a prison sentence for almost anything and never know that they're a felon.

The Smallest Minority has quite a work up on this.
Ayn Rand in Atlas Shrugged wrote: "There is no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is to crack down on criminals. When there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking the law. Create a nation of lawbreakers and then you can cash in on the guilt."

If you have ten thousand regulations you destroy all respect for the law.
-- Winston Churchill
Judges, legislators and cops. It's a mess. And they are writing more laws every day.

March 25, 2014

How To Save Taxpayers $100 Million A Year

They'll go nutzoid over this.
Rumsfeld says ‘a trained ape’ could outperform Obama in Afghanistan

You know it wasn’t a racist comment. You also know it doesn’t matter. MSNBC has their see-what-racists-all-Obama-opponents-are talking point for the next few days.

More to the point, though, knowing Donald Rumsfeld he doesn’t care about any of that, which is one of the things I love about him. The far more important point here is the point itself - that the U.S. had a good relationship with Karzai in Afghanistan when the Bush Administration was in office. It was only when Obama and crew came in that we suddenly couldn’t work with him.

Video clip here.