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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 45,434

Journal Archives

Al Franken for 2020!

Franken has two huge advantages over Hillary: he's able to connect with the common person, and he hasn't been the recipient of 30 years of hard-right love.

True symbolic bliss would be for Hillary to best Trump by 3 million votes

That was roughly the population of the United States the day Cornwallis surrendered his forces to General Washington at Yorktown.

To know he is so unpopular his opponent got the same number of votes as he did PLUS THE VOTES OF THE ENTIRE POPULATION OF THE UNITED STATES ON THE DAY WE WON OUR INDEPENDENCE would really jerk Trump's orange chain.

A point about swamp draining

When one "drains the swamp," he generally means he is going to remove the alligators.

Trump is replacing the alligators with piranhas.

San Francisco's official response to Trump - MUST READ!


...(t)hat no matter the threats made by President-elect Trump, San Francisco will remain a Sanctuary City.

The whole thing is beautiful. Go there. Right now. If it weren't for the Three Problems San Francisco has (housing prices through the roof, homes three-eighths of an inch apart, and vertical streets) I would be moving there tomorrow morning.

Unlike many of you, I believed Jameis Winston would turn out to be a good QB

It is, however, a little difficult to feel charitable about the young man when he beats your team 14-5.

If your geek flag flies high, this is the ebook for you


John D. Clark's Ignition! is his personal history of liquid rocket propellant research, and it is a joy to read if you have even a little knowledge of chemistry. It includes such delights as his reminiscences about chlorine trifluoride (yes, you should be quaking in your boots right now):

Chlorine trifluoride, ClF3 or "CTF" as the engineers insist on calling it, is a colorless gas, a greenish liquid, or a white solid. It boils at 12 (so that a trivial pressure will keep it liquid at room temperature) and freezes at a convenient -76. It also has a nice fat density, about 1.81 at room temperature.

It is also quite probably the most vigorous fluorinating agent in existence - much more vigorous than fluorine itself. Gaseous fluorine, of course, is much more dilute than the liquid ClF3, and liquid fluorine is so cold that its activity is very much reduced.

All this sounds fairly academic and innocuous, but when it is translated into the problem of handling the stuff, the results are horrendous. It is, of course, extremely toxic, but that's the least of the problem. It is hypergolic with every known fuel, and so rapidly hypergolic that no ignition delay has ever been measured. It is also hypergolic with such things as cloth, wood, and test engineers, not to mention asbestos, sand, and water - with which it reacts explosively. It can be kept in some of the ordinary structural metals - steel, copper, aluminum, etc. - because of the formation of a thin film of insoluble metal fluoride which protects the bulk of the metal, just as the invisible coat of oxide on aluminum keeps it from burning up in the atmosphere. If, however, this coat is melted or scrubbed off, and has no chance to reform, the operator is confronted with the problem of coping with a metal-fluorine fire. For dealing with this situation, I have always recommended a good pair of running shoes.

How Indian babies are named

"Grandfather, how are Indian babies named?"

'My precious grandson, it is a tradition that has been handed down for generations. After the baby is born, the father walks outside with his eyes closed. He tilts his head to the sky and gives thanks to the gods. Then he looks straight ahead and opens his eyes. The first thing he sees is the baby's name.'

"Thank you, Grandfather."

'You are most welcome. By the way, why do you ask, Trump-stealing-our-land?'

I did the numbers: even if electoral votes were apportioned strictly by population, we still lose

We've been talking about electoral votes here, and how a vote in Wyoming or Idaho counts for more at the electoral college than one from Pennsylvania. Which brought to mind the obvious: if the country was apportioned using the population of Wyoming as the basis for issuing a state electors, how would we have done?

Turns out we'd still lose.

My first move was to go to www.electoral-vote.com and get the current elector counts. There are 538 of them, and Hillary got 232. She needed 270 to win. I lovingly wrote down (well, put into a computer file; if you PM me I will send you a copy) all the states and how many electoral votes each gets.

Then I went to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_population and got each state's population at the 2010 Census. Wyoming, the smallest state, has 563,000 people living there. Divide 563,000 by the 3 electoral votes Wyoming currently has, and you get a constant of 188,000 - or a "W" (for Wyoming, not wacked-out president) of 188. I then rounded to the whole thousand each state's population - California had 37,254,503 population but I used 37,254. Then I divided each state's population by W and awarded the whole number of electors to each state. (If a state has population/W of 44.725, they get 44 electors. I did this shit at 1 am. I'm not getting into higher math when most of y'all are getting into bed.) Then I added up the number of electors Hillary would have taken if all states were winner-take-all.

We end up with 1617 electors. You need 809 to win, and Hillary got 708.

Democrats made the same fucking mistake we make every fucking election: We blow off the ENTIRE MIDDLE OF THE FUCKING COUNTRY because the Pacific Coast, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Michigan are going to save us...until they don't, like happened this year. We can no longer ignore the under-five-EV states because shit like Trump happens when we do.

Don't kid yourself: Bathrooms cost us this election

Just before the election I ran an ad from the Shoshone County Republican Party in one of my papers. It was one of those "if you believe x y and z then you should be one of us" ads. It listed all the normal stuff - lower taxes, less regulation, no gun control...and at the bottom of the list was "people should use the restroom of the gender they were born with."

THOSE kinds of issues killed us this year. People who voted Trump did not care if a guy who can't stay out of bankruptcy court, who buys imported steel and sells imported shirts, and who runs a business in an industry thick with illegal immigrants even cares about fixing the economy, restarting the US manufacturing sector or fixing the immigration problem. They cared about exactly one thing: is a person who was born male peeing in the ladies' room?

Well...backtrack a little. They cared about a few more things than that...like if women are getting abortions even though they know no one who's ever gotten one nor could they get one themselves, how terrible the "sanctuary city" of San Francisco (in which they wouldn't set foot if hundred-dollar bills floated down from the sky like leaves in autumn) is, or how we'd all be prosperous and happy if the government would just stop regulating everyone to death.*

Ask someone who voted for that sociopath why they did and the answer will probably be, "he will Make America Great Again." Ask them exactly what that means and you're sure to hear "you know, he'll make America great again." The reality is, either no one KNOWS what making America "great again" will entail - or they don't want to tell you America will be great when "all the people who aren't like me" are gone.

* Google "Bunker Hill Superfund site" or "B.J. Carney" to see where unregulated industry will get you. You'll love this one: in St. Maries, Idaho, there is a piece of land next to the St. Joe River that was once used for treating utility poles. When the place opened there was no such thing as a pressure treatment chamber, so they did the next best thing: dug a ditch 50 feet long, 20 feet wide and 20 feet deep, stacked poles in the ditch with wooden stickers in between, put some sort of a lid on top of the poles to keep them from floating up, and filled the ditch with creosote. A week later they'd pump the creosote out and retrieve the poles. And now you know why a city of 2200 residents has a three-story hospital with a full-time oncologist on staff.

An attack ad, updated for a new age

Those of us who are old enough to remember the Nixon administration, might remember this fun ad:

This ad, and a little thinking about Trumpolini's finances, leads directly to...

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