Sunday, December 07, 2008

Who watches the Watchmen?

I hope more civilians take an interest in how the law is enforced in their hometown. These falsified searches are all in the name of the drug war. I absolutely hate the idea of anonymous tips being used for search warrants. Lame.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

More Tim Tebow Thoughts

In the coming hours, we will witness Tim Tebow seal his 2nd Heisman Trophy or fail to perform against Nick Saban's suffocating Bama D. I like watching Tebow play. I love his size and how he looks like a LB or DE taking snaps. It's hysterical to see a guy that big move that well and throw rockets from the pocket. The more I watch him, the lower are his odds of success in the NFL. I have so far been wrong about Matt Ryan, but I feel far more confident in my skepticism of Tebow's skills for the NFL.

In fairness to Tebow, he is not asked to pass a lot, so he can't showcase if he has skills with reading defenses and decision making. When he does have the opportunity, he's been fortunate to throw to wide open receivers or on short WR screen style passes. You don't see him thread the needle much... or face a 3rd and long. I see him in that Vince Young mold of "1 read" and "awkward throwing" project QBs. This is not a guy who could step in year 1 and perform well in the NFL. Add to that his odd running problems. Look at his stats. His ypa are half a yard lower than last season and 1.5 yards lower than his frosh year when he was primarily an extra running back, not a QB. In a spread offense, the QB should be making good reads on when to hand off and when to keep it and averaging more than 3.7 ypa. So is he making bad reads or not running as well? Something is not adding up. If he isn't making good reads on option plays, imagine his reads on passing downs.

Even if a team were to use the pistol or spread like the Chiefs are doing with Tyler Thigpen, I don't know if you could trust Tebow against an NFL defense in passing situations. I've been watching the Chiefs use these wacky formations wondering if they will make a run for Vick when he comes out of jail or draft a guy like Tebow if he comes out. I'd trust a post-prison Vick more than Tebow throwing the ball. I'll be interested to see how Tebow throws, if he has to, versus Bama, and even more interested to see how he works out in private workouts or at the combine.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Best QBs in the NCAA 2008 Edition

The List for NFL "Suitability" and then Analysis...

5. Tim Tebow
4. Colt McCoy
3. Mark Sanchez
2. Sam Bradford
1. Matt Stafford

First off, no seniors. Secondly, no Ball St. QB will be on my list as he plays no one. Third, no Texas Tech QBs as they run a system that makes anyone look good. Fourth, the NFL now wants pocket passers with great pass rush awareness and QBs who are mobile. Fifth, I don't go beyond 5 QBs because in reality there are never 5 QBs that are good fits for the pros in one draft class (not even 83).

This year's senior class is very very weak. Feels like that 1990 or 91 draft. Tim Tebow at no. 5 for a variety of reasons. He has a solid frame and open field speed uncommon in QBs. Sadly, he has low skills in reading defenses, throwing an crisp short pass, mechanics look weird, and he's taken a beating at Florida. How many games can he get hit 30 times between carries and dropbacks at age 18-22 and survive intact for 12 years in the NFL? Tebow runs the option spread, and I think comparisons to Tebow are Tommie Frazier and Eric Crouch more than Michael Vick. He will be a giant project that has boom and bust written all over it. Watch when he drops back to pass. He locks in on a receiver and then has this slow delivery that is awkward. I also do not like that he sometimes leaps when he throws. This means he is throwing all arm, and I have no clue why a person would leap when they released a ball. I did it once at age 5. I see him staying for his Senior year to polish his passing skills and to go on more missionary work since he is super Christian.

Colt McCoy is someone I have soured on as the season has progressed. Yes, his numbers are sick. Yes his accuracy is great from a pure numbers standpoint. Yes he has wheels. He doesn't get pressured much. He reads defenses well, and has lots of time to do so. One thing I noticed in UT games I watched this season was how McCoy would leave balls high. His receivers are tall, so maybe that is why, but he left them out to dry over the middle, and some of the throws look like they sailed rather than had deliberate high placement. He is a tad smaller than the other QBs listed, and I love how his height changes on different websites. I like him for the pros more than Tebow because his accuracy. I do not like him more than the next 3 guys for the size, arm strength and not from the cozy confines of Austin bad vibes I get from all UT guys.

Mark Sanchez, which I might be biased on, has the playing style and feel of an NFL starter. He is agile in the pocket, has great arm strength for those slants and 15 yard outs, has nice touch on sideline throws, and is a gym rat and preparation freak. His downsides are that nagging knee injury and his inability to know when a play is dead and he should just throw it away. Sanchez takes some sacks he should not and throws some balls he should not because he gives his guys time. part of this is because of USC's line and part is his inability to shrug off and elude defensive linemen (a la Big Ben). He has great touch at age 21. Watch when he throws a wheel route to a RB. He leads his receiver and understands the window of time he has and his receivers "hands". His wideouts get bullets on slants and outs, and his RBs get softer throws on wheels and screens. McNabb, you douche, take note. He has the problem of letting his guard down versus bad defenses. He has had a couple of games where after some quick strikes and a lead has been built, he forgets about the crappy safety because they failed to stop USC the last 3 drives. Besides his physical tools, the best thing about him is his preparation and work in the gym. This is what you want to hear from a QB's coaches. This is more than what USC said about Matt Leinart.

Sam Bradford has the strong arm, the release, the size, the ability to find the 3rd or 4th option, defensive reading skills that Tebow and McCoy would kill for, and to top it all off, he has a frame that could add 25 lbs on it in an NFL conditioning system. I loved how in the Oklahoma St game he kept finding his third option for a backbreaking conversion or deep crossing route completion. My one knock on him is that Bradford has not faced tough defenses, giving him plenty of time to make his great decisions. That's it. I kind of view him as an unknown vs. real competition. I know he played against all of those wonderful Big 12 teams that are somehow all ranked in the top 12 week after week, but do any of those teams stop each other????? If Bradford leaves after this year, we will not know how he faced against good defenses, but I still think he is worth the risk of a top 5 pick.

Well between Bradford and Stafford, you're splitting hairs in my opinion. He has all of the physical tools like Bradford, but he has not played behind a great offensive line. Each year, his YPA and completion percentage have gone up. This is impressive in the SEC. Look at Stafford's stats versus the tough SEC defenses. His blemish is that Florida game, which was gawd awful. He made some poor decisions, and started to gamble with his throws to try to jumpstart a comeback. Georgia runs more of a pro style offense than those Big 12 teams (or Florida). I can't add anything about Stafford that others have not already said better.

What happens in January when the bowls are done and final stats compiled? From the looks of the current crop of senior QBs, which has the media talking up a QB from Ball St., Stafford and Bradford would be crazy to stay in the NFL. Even though he is a 3rd year Sophomore, I think Bradford will jet for the NFL with the Heisman under his arm. After reading an ESPN article on how UT players love Austin and adjust to the pros weird, I think McCoy stays another year, and Sanchez and Tebow follow suit. This would place them at the top of the 2010 QB class, but they better watch out because if Jimmy Claussen makes strides, he can creep up on them.

Where will Stafford and Bradford land? I see both as top 10 picks. As of right now, KC, Detroit, Seattle, St. Louis, and San Fran are in position and could use new faces at QB. I think Detroit will go after whomever is rated highest just to please their fans, who will give the new GM the benefit of the doubt after the Matt Millen fiasco. KC's draft decisions rely on whomever is the new GM, if they do get rid of the GM, which is a rumor I have read. KC has a shit buffet of QBs right now. Seattle could go in a new QB direction since Hasslebeck is just wrapping up year 4 of a 6 year deal with some minor brain damage. Keep in mind that cap number in 2009, which is 4 mil more than his base salary, which would show the savings they would receive by cutting him (5.25 mil). St Louis is earlier in the contract extension for Bulger, but could bring in a new guy to sit for 1/2 or 1 year and cut Bulger after 2009. There are a limited number of possibilities because the idea of needs vs. best player available, but I do not see either guy lasting beyond pick 10.

Where Will Matt Leinart End Up?

Matt Leinart is the talented but tarnished young QB of the Arizona Cardinals. Since Kurt Warner has found the fountain of youth and Ken Whisenhunt has proclaimed Warner as his guy, Leinart has been wearing the headset and carrying the clipboard in his pivotal 3rd year. I firmly believe Leinart will be a good QB sometime in the future, and I think he is in love with his celebrity status in that Southern Cal to ASU corridor of hot, young women. He's built like a prototype QB, makes good decisions, and looks like a movie star. This can be problematic unless you have Bill Belicheck as a coach. This is the pivotal year for Leinart with Arizona because this is the 3rd year of his contract after which the base salary jumps and the signing bonuses have been deferred enough that cutting Leinart makes economic sense as he is a lower cap hit when cut vs. kept, or you have to give him an extension to save cap space. Still, that extension is based on his draft status, not his poor production. This is how the Texans gave David Carr an extra $9 mil for keeping him one more year. Warner is 37, and the Cardinals might see a 2-3 year window with Warner that would allow them the freedom to use the Leinart cap space on other needs that could help them win it all now. Leinart most likely will be gone, but the question is where?

Even if you automatically want to send him to the Lions, you shouldn't because the Lions are looking at the number 1 pick, which leads us to this question: who is coming out? There are 5 names in college football at the QB position that could merit first round pick status, negating the need to risk it with Leinart. Sam Bradford of Oklahoma, Matt Stafford of Georgia, Mark Sanchez of USC, Tim Tebow of Florida and Colt McCoy of Texas. All are underclassmen. McCoy has said he will stay for a senior year, which I doubt if he wins the title and/or Heisman, but let's remove him. Sanchez could easily stay another year as his skill position players develop even more, giving him "Leinart in 05" stats for his resume. Stafford & Bradford most likely will come out as both have skills & size that the pro scouts love, plus they do not want to suffer Leinart-Quinn-Brohm disease where you drop 20 spots for staying an extra year and being picked apart for 12 months. Tebow is a mystery. He plays the spread with a 1 read offense. He has a gun, but mechanics, style and decisions are still an issue. Two years ago, I would have said he'd be out in a heartbeat, but with the dearth of success for "mobile QBs" in the NFL, I think some teams would shy away from him. John Elway, Randall Cunningham and Steve Young paved the way for Vick, McNabb and Vince Young, but people forgot that the old 3 were pocket passers who could run. I think Tebow is so raw that if he were drafted, he would sit for a year, maybe two. He isn't the youngest guy on this list despite being the only true junior as Matt Stafford is almost 4 months younger than everyone at 20. I see Stafford and Bradford entring the draft with McCoy or Sanchez coming out depending on how their seasons wrap up. Sanchez keeps climbing draft boards, and Pete Carroll is loaded at QB at USC so it might be a good move for all involved. If I were either guy, I'd stay since Stafford and Bradford will go early with the big money. Most likely it's Stafford, Bradford and "wildcard". Since Stafford and Bradford are projected top 10 picks, let's eliminate the Chiefs and Lions. Wildcard could fall to the mid or late 1st round and that's where I think a team like the Seahawks, Iggles or Dolphins make a move. Yeah I said Iggles, they need to start fresh with a new guy.

Who does this leave? The Rams, Jets, Vikings, 49ers, Titans, and Bucs. The Rams have Bulger who gets injured more and more often, costs them a pretty penny, and could be cut since they are now a couple years into that big extension they gave him in '06. Bulger surprisingly has only played one complete season. Could Leinart be a cost effective replacement, freeing up cap space for other investments that the Rams desperately need? Yup. The offense could become Steve Jackson centric and say goodbye to the high flying turf show, becoming more of a west coast offense. The Jets have the aging gunslinger Brett Favre at $12 mil per year. He is a vampire. You will not kill him, and even if you do, he will come back to haunt you. The Jets could sign Leinart, have him learn their playbook for 1 year behind Brett and then let Brett go at age 41... if he even comes back next year. It also appeals to Brett's vanity as Leinart's contract would be back up money (with tons of incentives) which would not threaten Brett. The Titans currently have the other deflated QB from the 06 draft class, Vince Young, sitting on the bench as Kerry Collins leads the Titans to victory every week. Young's contract is even worse than Leinart's so his @ss will be cut loose and he'll probably end up dead in his bedroom closet hanging with a sign that says "the fans didn't love me enough" taped to his chest. Collins is 36 but still throws a good deep ball and makes good decisions. It would be hilarious to see Jeff Fisher end up with Leinart since he tried to sell the Titans' ownership on him 3 years ago. Leinart has a backer in Fisher, can step in immediately if needed but will most likely sit behind Collins a year or until he phucks up enough. These teams have one thing in common, older QBs that get the job done. It's a tougher sell than the next 3 teams. Plus, what happens to Vince Young? That's for another post.

This leaves three teams with even bigger problems: the Bucs, Vikings and 49ers. The 49ers will cut Alex Smith loose, who should send royalty checks to Matt Leinart for not coming out early and to Aaron Rodgers for being "too arrogant" in his pre-draft interview with the 49ers. There is a gaping hole on any team that is using J.T. O'Sullivan as a QB, which sounds like a great bar name. The 49ers could get Leinart for backup money with tons of incentives. Draft a WR and suddenly they have a nice collection of young talent in Leinart, Vernon Davis, Frank Gore and whatever WR they grab (Crabtree or Maclin). It would be ironic that the team Leinart spurned to stay in school an extra year would be the team to give him a second chance. Determining Leinart's chances of going to San Fran will be who the next head coach will be. The Bucs have an odd situation. They have a 39 year old QB who we should call Captain Checkdown. Luke McCown and Brian Griese are not going to add anything above what Garcia brings. Gruden loves reclamation projects as he turned Rich Gannon and Brad Johnson into efficient SB QBs. Leinart has the tools and would be the youngest QB Gruden's had with an intact spleen. They can sign Leinart and throw him into the mix. Watch a Bucs game. It's pathetic. Garcia throws WR screens, RB screens, 3 yard outs and then the once a half bomb to Galloway. Gruden is also a hard@ss. Leinart could use this. This leaves us with the Vikings. Anyone else think they'd be a SB contender with a competent QB who would force the safeties back? Anyone else think they should have traded for McNabb or Derek Anderson? T-Jack and Gus gus are an abysmal pairing on the depth chart. Purple jesus and chester taylor would love to have a QB that can hit Bernard Berrian in stride and not throw into triple coverage on fade patterns. Leinart is made for this squad. I think a funny touch would be for Leinart to start in Minnesota with JD Booty as his backup. Honestly, JD Booty must be licking his chops at Gus Gus and T-jack's inadequacy as he learns the system and prepares to take snaps. It would only be fitting that Leinart would be the royal jerk that he was to JD Booty at USC and swoop in to steal that starting job in the NFL as well. The Vikings are an interesting case because they could gamble and go after McNabb or Derek Anderson this offseason as well when both will cost less compared to last offseason (when they should have grabbed either guy). On the other hand, McNabb will be 30-something and is a health risk while Anderson was exposed this season as a fluke. Anyway that you slice it, Leinart will be given a chance to start somewhere, he'll just have to deliver when that opportunity comes. I expect him to.

From least likely to most likely..... Rams, Titans, Jets, Bucs, 49ers and Vikings.

Hold on, some uncertainty arises about him leaving.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My Favorite Pitcher Retired

Mike Mussina is retiring from baseball. He came up with my favorite team, the Orioles, and was a star for them during my teen years. He is an incredibly smart athlete, as he graduated from Stanford in 3 years, and is not a braggart or psycho like Clemens or Schilling. He was a power pitcher who became a living on the black pitcher as he aged, and was consistent. Some will argue he is a Hall of Famer. I am a huge fan, but I disagree in this age of heightened Hall of Fame standards. One thing I hope happens is that his candidacy for the Hall of Fame causes voters to re-evaluate their standards of the Steroid Era. If they will discount hitters' numbers from the Roid Era, will the give a boost to pitchers from the same era?

I've got plenty of Moose memories. I remember him mowing down the Indians in the ALCS only to see the Orioles piss away great starts and lose. Reading interviews where he talked about the art and science of pitching at a high level in the MLB. I remember my sister having a crush on him and cutting out pictures of him to put up with her Troy Aikman photos. While in college, I remember watching him warm up one start versus the Red Sox and walking down to lean on the fence 5 feet from him as he warmed up. A high school friend of mine was at the game as well and we kept talking to him about what he would do next season. We kept saying "Anywhere but the Yankees". The movement on his pitches was amazing to watch from directly behind the mound. It was a joy to see him get to 20 wins this season, and I am glad he goes out on top. I wonder how long he could have goen and if he could have reached 300 wins, and I also wonder how many times he saw leads blown by bullpens slowing his march to 300. That is life... missed opportunities, moments of joy, and some what ifs.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thank you Veterans

Thank you for your efforts and your sacrifices defending freedom.

Special shout out to my relatives who served in World War 1 which was the original source for this holiday, Armistice Day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

My Type of Environmentalism

I am for limiting deforestation, protecting endangered species, and recycling. I am for clean air from toxic and harmful chemicals. I am for clean water and clean oceans. I am for double blind scientific funding so researchers do not know if the hippies or the oil men are funding a project. I am for the unity of people who love nature which includes hunters, sportsmen, tree huggers, lovers of Gaia, snowmobilers, and people who just love to spend time outside. I love nuclear, wind and solar where applicable & possible at a reasonable cost. I understand that coal and oil have their problems, but that they have a place until we can harness energy from cleaner sources and better store & manage those sources. I believe in research and development of the best ways to live in ecosystems and harness energy as science has brought us out of the Dark Ages and will continue to lead us forward.

I am against the religion known as environmentalism. I am against mixing science with politics. I am against people from California wanting to cap the "carbon" emissions of poor countries who hope to bring millions out of poverty. Chicago used to be called the "Black City" because they burnt so much coal fueling the city. Should we deny poor Indians and Chinese the joy of electricity? I dislike rich celebrities telling poor people to not drive their pick up trucks as they fly their private planes from convention to convention. I dislike retired politicians, who lose elections that they should have won if they had not been stiff as a board, hanneling their repressed energies and need for attention into wagging their fingers at people and telling them to watch their carbon footprint while they use more energy annually than a thousand poor Indonesians.

I like to tell the story of the greatest environmentalist I know who has no clue he is an environmentalist. My dad is an accidental environmentalist. The more I look back on stupid things my dad forced me to help him with through 22 years of living together, the more I find hidden enviro-friendly things. My dad has many faults, but he is a shining star when it comes to the environment. He's recycled in our town for 18 years. He uses recycled paper to wipe his ass. He uses everything until it is worn out completely, including keeping cars on the road with regular maintenance for 15+ years. He and I installed those foam insulators in the toilet tanks in our home to use .5 fewer gallons each flush. He is a hawk when it comes to the thermostat and oil usage. Most importantly to those carbon footprint folks, he's been part of a carpool for 20+ years and has driven the car pool of 4 (sometimes 5) guys for 15. For the global warming doomsters, that's removing 3 "commuters" worth of CO2 particles for over 20 years. This is also with older cars in the late 80s that were not as clean as today's cars.

Why did he do all of this? Each thing listed above has a common theme: easy money. Each thing is a positive economic gain for him or his family. Add to it accessibility. He didn't have to go far out of his way to do these changes. They were easier to enact because the market was there to provide options (cheaper TP, lower water bill fee, paying carpool customers). I am all for using the carrot when dealing with environmental problems because I think the stick does not work and can lead to worse economic and living standards damage. After all, didn't we force the world to give up cheap coolants and CFCs to keep food from spoiling because the ozone layer was going to burn away if we used them another 20 years? Didn't they tell my parents we'd run out of space for our garbage and were entering a new ice age? Isn't there always some boogeyman which the enviro-doomers use to scare us?

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Election 2008 Thoughts

Obama ran a great campaign and with the wind of a credit crunch, toxic environment for the GOP, Bush fatigue, nearly a billion dollars in fundraising, and an adoring media at his back, managed to win 53-46 in the popular vote. He is my president. I "hope" he does well.

The Oregon Senator who pushed for tax breaks for Boy Scout arrow manufacturers looks to be re-elected, it's too close to call right now but whatever. I guess those arrows did save his job.

Al Franken narrowly lost, but we have to wait for a recount. Minnesota nearly elected a former cokehead who was in one funny skit his entire time on SNL.

A convicted criminal was re-elected in Alaska for the Senate. How did Ted Stevens win? How? Don Young is likely facing criminal charges as well and he was re-elected. WTF Alaska?

So John Kerry is seeking the Sec of State position? Oh jesus-fucking-christ. Can't this guy just go away for both himself and his party? There are tons of capabale and fresh faced Democrats in Massachusetts waiting for attention.

Turnout was actually down from 2004. Very surprising, as I thought the number of dead voters would make up for any shortfall because the GOP was not enthusiastic.

No troops died in Iraq in October. Over 125K there right now, we handed over another province over for Iraqi control and went unscathed as far as casualties in October. Hey, you all remember we are fighting a war in Iraq right? C'mon, someone not related to a soldier has to remember?

I really wish the GOP would be warmer to socially liberal people. Why do they always force candidates to be so damn conservative with their social views? I think it hurts on nationwide tickets, and I can only hope that the GOP learns that they need to allow moderate voices in purple and light blue states if they think they have a shot at governorships and Senate seats. The Dems learned their lesson in the 90s and now you have guys like Jim Webb in the Senate.

In honor of Mr. George Carlin, I didn't vote.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Election Settled Thanks to Credit Crisis

Just look at the polling results change starting in mid-September. I still predict an Obama victory, and it will be much wider than I anticipated this summer. That is entirely thanks to the financial fuck up we have at least admitted is here. Seriously, that crisis was the best thing to happen to his campaign. No wonder Nancy Pelosi couldn't get the bailout bill to pass, prolonging the coverage of Wall St insanisty, despite her desire for it and her party having the majority in Congress. Hmmmm? Many people would say we have been in a messed up situation for a while and would be correct. It's just that we did not admit to it or realize it until recently. Even now, I do not think we are willing to accept what it will take to emerge on the other side intact.

Case in point: if the government sends us more stimulus checks in spring of 2009 instead of using that borrowed money on an infrastructure project or doemstic energy project (acceptable evils), I will be pretty ripped. This will not help. It's a band aid, but one laced with low doses of poison. We do not need checks in our pockets from some other country. We need to take our lumps with a recession, reduce consumption, save some money, and move along. Unless we build up our savings, we will not have a pool of money to use as domestic investment for the next recovery that doesn't come from others. The longer we deny this and push it off the worse it will be & slower the recovery. Similar to any bad college break up. This is why my college relationships lasted 3 months tops. Rip the band aid off.

Even though I am not voting this election, this is why I do not vote with my wallet. Most politicians are retards when it comes to economics. People like Obama think spreading the wealth around is good when all it is is taking the pie and shifting who gets what amount, or that government spending is good for 'creating jobs' even though that is just taking taxpayer (or foreign creditor) money and spending it. This doesn't help. It is confiscating taxpayer money earned that could be directed wherever people or businesses would want it to go for their happiness and putting it into an area that a politician wants it to go. Because politicians know best. Yup, I see. That's just the Mainer in me, anti-government to the core.

Go John Galt. Coming to a nation near you.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Check them

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I don't have a sarcastic remark for this as breast cancer affects so many women that I doubt a person would be reading this that has not had a sister. mother, aunt, gramma, or friend who has been diagnosed with breast cancer. I am rather surprised we have a whole month for awarenesss since it seems breast cancer carries that dreaded fear during the run up to a mammogram and then that period before you get the results for every single woman I have known. Even then sometimes the Docs say they saw a spec on the mammogram so they leave you twisting in the wind as they do more tests to make sure it is nothing but a calcium deposit. Those days of waiting are like waiting for an HIV test to come back after you finally mustered the courage to pay for sex in Vegas.

Words for all women, whether flat chested or overburdened & suffering back problems, check them often and with vigilance. Men, support the women you know to check them. Sometimes I wish women checked their breasts as much as some men check their package. I definitely do this (my OCD tic), so I am mocking myself, but man, some guys are always arranging things down there. Imagine if women did that. Not a single woman would fail to catch breast cancer early. It would also make for some really awkward conversations. It's bad enough when your boss is reaching around in his pocket jingling change as he fumbles with his balls, imagine if a female boss kept rubbing inside her bra as she asked you to fill out the TPS reports. Awkward, but it would save lives. We need to save breasts and keep as many women alive, because we have found out through the planet wide obesity problem, that breasts only look good on women. Check them.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

More Stock Purchases

As the market has continued it's slide down to reasonable PE levels or lower price levels to account for diminished earnings expectations, I've been picking up more stocks. The portfolio I have put together would have cost me 4x what it is now about 2 months ago. One thing I am running into is purchasing stoxks right before the quarterly dividend is declared. This is a "bad thing" to some people. It's because it creates unnecessary tax payments. Here's my response: it's tax payments on money I did not have 2 weeks ago. I do not like doing it, but hey, it's the nature of buying now while the crash is going on compared to waiting. I love that rationale "you're paying a tax". Like paying a tax on money I did not have previously is a harm. What's my dividend going to be anyway $30, and I'll owe like $4.5 in taxes. Oh shit, better start worrying about that lost trip to Wendy's.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Mad Men, Thank You So Much

AMC's "Mad Men" is gaining steam on "Lost" as my favorite show on television. "Mad Men" hits the nostalgia vibe, especially the smoking, which I always associate with a touch of glamour and being an adult. It's a corporate world I would love to exist in over the current sanitized, PC, no fun version of Corporate America. It's the interesting post-war era on the verge of many changes, which the advertising world seeks to be on the cutting edge in order to exploit it. The drama is sometimes mundane marital problems & affairs and other times rather complex like the issue of adoption, the changing role of women in the workplace or closeted homosexuality. The show is also extremely well composed. The music fits, the writing is crisp and believable, the detail is outstanding, and the attitude just blows me away. It just feels right. This is all for a cable show!!!!!! No offense to "The Shield", which I have always loved, but the production qualities and overall acting of "Mad Men" are a cut above any FX show.

I also have to take timeout to show respect for Christina Hendricks. My wife and I both applaud how this woman is on TV despite having curves not seen since Jayne Mansfield. She has woman hips. I love her screentime as the all powerful office manager, who also happens to be beautiful. I thought her look might be padded as no Hollywood agent would represent an actress shaped like that, but no, I saw her at the Emmys, which no one remembers except for her boobs. She's for real and Joan Holloway is fa-seriously cool. I'm not alone in my appreciation.

In all seriousness, I appreciate "Lost" and "Mad Men" because they are no just cop, doctor or lawyer shows. Who decided that lawyers, doctors and cops were that interesting and warranted 60 minute shows to enthrall us. I can only take so many "maybe I'm just not cut out to be a cop anymore" monologues. Kudos to shows that go beyond the norm, which includes wonderful premium channel shows like "Dexter", "The Sopranos" and "The Wire". These shows can contain the same human drama in those cop/doctor/lawyer shows, but with a different setting and environment. may your hard work inspire others.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Socialized Medicine Will Never Happen in the USA

Having experienced socialized medicine for a short period of my life in the UK, I can say, I never want it to happen here. Even with a Democrat as president and controlling Congress I am certain it will never happen here for one strong reason.....

Democrats will never accept the tort reform required in European models for socialized medicine. Their lawyer lobbyists would never let it happen. Never.

My Thoughts on the last "Matrix" Movie

The Matrix was a very interesting movie that had some nice BS philosophy stuff in it and lots of kung fu. Let me take that back, the philosophy was cool in that the idea is that your experience could be just the signals in your brain to set stimuli, which is a materialistic idea of existence. Kind of interesting in a sci fi movie with Keanu Reeves. I loved this flick, and I kept it on my CPU at school for a couple of years. It also had humans fighting evil robots. Come on, if a robot isn't a bumbling servant type or a sex robot, they have to be evil in movies. The most basic premise is that humans want to be free, robots want us to be docile pod people, generating heat that they use a form of fusion which they use to power their world.

The Matrix 3 wrapped up with a lot of interesting CGI scenes of battles, Morpheus becoming a secondary figure (after the Oracle said that without him humans would be lost), Trinity dying, Neo dead, Agent Smith turning out to be a CPU virus while Neo was the McAfee anti-virus program, and the robots and humans calling a truce. Yup, robots and humans call a truce. Humans whow ant to be freed, can be freed, but the rest remain plugged in, which from what I recall in the first movie was referred to as slavery.
So slavery is OK as long as the enslaved does not realize it or is OK with it? Humans would strive to free themselves for years upon years, but suddenly be cool with the awful robots. Every cool character that we could have developed an attachment to was killed or shoved to the side by the end of the trilogy. This screamed BS. It betrayed everything from the first movie. It was a total cop out to the idea of "peace" instead of going through with fighting for your freedom.
Here are my questions: with Neo out of the way, how long would it have taken the machines to reprogram the matrix so everyone had the same life in their picture show existence to prevent others from being released or discovering "talents"? You seriously mean to tell me super intelligent robots and computers couldn't figure that out. Then, how fast would the robots wipe out Zion? How would humans explain to families of those who died fighting the machines that despite the sacrifices made, humans still "power" them? Why would a robot guided by a logic function ever hold up an agreement when they know the one critical variable for the other side is eliminated? Why wouldn't the robots help disarm the humans, and then wipe them out? Why wouldn't the Architect create a CPU program to deal with the freelance programs like the Oracle and the Merovingian? Why would the humans ever give up on their fight, existing only at the mercy of the robots?
Huge betrayal of everything the first movie established.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

My Bathrobe

A few winters ago, I received a bathrobe. It is very heavy, grey, and great for winters. I like to wear it on the weekend just lounging around. I cook breakfast on Sundays and generally be a lazy bum. I also like to put my hands up to the shawl collar and say "as mayor of the munchkin city" in that sing-song manor that the mayor of the munchkin city uses in the Wizard of Oz. It makes my wife laugh, and keeps me happy on cold winter weekends. It's one of those gifts that I've used way beyond expectations of the gift giver. First would be my battery powered alarm clock (still in use) that I got when I was 6, second would be my wristwatch from my wife a few birthdays ago, and third would be this bathrobe

A smoking jacket is on the wish list for when I hit 40... OK maybe 35. I'd like one by the time I have kids so I can tell them fatherly things and recall distant family memories while holding a pipe.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Steely Dan

I'm on a Steely Dan kick right now. Part of the Yacht Rocky genre. I need something smooth to help me pass the days.

I Guess I am Not Alone

Ok, this has weirded me out and I find I am not the first to notice it. One thing I noticed though is that his lips are really thin in his TV ads where he talks to the camera in his "normal" voice. They look wicked thin and purple. Really creepy. Notice in the link though his lips are puffy while in this photo they are really thin. Does he get collagen? I wouldn't put it past him. The man has chosen friends, wives, pastors, etc. in a never ending quest to become president. Yes, I left a comment on that guy's blog as it was a really interesting collection of information on Barry.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Time Waits for No One

I have always liked that phrase. Time keeps going, and it will not stop for you. That's really hit home the last few months as some friends of my family have passed on, an old coworker died, and my grandparents have updated their will and "arrangements". The couple that passed on in a span of 6 months was like a 3rd set of grandparents, and oftentimes, they treated me more lovingly than my own. Bill died from complications from a serious stroke that had damaged his brain, and his wife, Jane, stopped kidney dialysis because she didn't want to go through it just to live each day. It was her choice. Her Bill was gone, her daughter was a succesful businesswoman, and her grandsons were grown up and married. That was her in a nutshell: tough and independent.

I went to visit them in Florida (retirement requires a move to FLA??) 5 years ago. They were as entertaining and tough as usual, but they said something to me that will always stick, "oh yeah, the first ten years of retirement, we did whatever we wanted, now we're waiting". Every morning, she cooked breakfast for me, and I'd get up at 7am to eat it with them. They'd tell me to sleep in, as their grandson did it, and I'd say "I'f you're cooking for me, I'm getting my ass up". I'd eat dinner with them and talk until 7pm (bedtime). Bill told me stories of serving in the US military attachment that was in China at the end of World War 2 and during their Civil War. We golfed 18 holes one morning (at 8am to beat the crowd), and even at 78, he walked the course with me. There are many memories of visiting them growing up I will keep and a steady one is Jane's spaghetti sauce. No matter when my family visited on a vacation, the last meal was her famous sauce. It was so good that when I visited in '03, The day after I had the spaghetti, I had some of the sauce only as a snack. My wife has the recipe now, so I guess some things never die.

I Bought On Friday

Let's put everything into perspective (Dow bear markets). S&P 500 prices declined over 20% in one month, after a pretty steady wave down since last fall (45% to be exact). That's almost a halving. Do I think the business world is that dark. No. Have some names been beaten down relentlessly despite producing must use products and generating steady income streams? Yes. I decided on Friday to wade into some individual stocks and next week, I will pull the trigger on some more. If we have a rally, I'll wait that out for the next leg down. Oh, there will be one more.

My Reasons

1. I'm 28, so I got a long time to ride this rollercoaster.
2. My wife and I have plenty of cash saved up for rainy days.
3. The crash of the last week is almost unprecedented. They keep saying "worst week ever". Sign me up.
4. I have not touched a bank or consumer/discretionary goods company... and I will not since I don't feel comfortable with banks and feel the consumer spending recession has only just begun.
5. Jim Cramer says sell and stay away from the market. Yup, that's a contrarian sign.

and most importantly...

6. If we do head to Great Depression v.2.0, then this will not matter as there will be bigger worries for everyone.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Hey Daniel-san

End Near, you don't say
How many things must I fear
Don't insult Grampa

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

A Good Day for Democracy....

I think we witnessed the beauty and potential of the internet and modern telecommunications with the NO vote by the House of Representatives on Monday for the Paulson Plan. I loved that reps said response from constituents was overwhelming and that they responded to it by voting no. That is what representative democracy is about. Even if it may have been the wrong vote, it expressed the will of the people, which is why they are voted in, right? It makes me happy. This is close to the small town hall referendums that I witnessed in Maine, and even the state wide referendums that I didn't know were peculiar to Maine compared to most other states. There are downsides to direct democracy, but I like the occasional chance to let the people decide on laws that will govern them.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Obama: Vote and You Shall be Saved

Vote for me, yes vote for Messiah v 2.0. You know I am the one true God, I mean, candidate. Bask in the glory that is my transcendant aura while I search around to find out anything I have done at all in the history of my working life that would warrant being elected the most powerful person in the free world. Wait... I am looking for it... c'mon there's got to be one thing. For Christ sake I wrote two books about myself, there should be something. Look, I'll get back to that, but let me talk about what will happen if I am elected.

In late January of 2009, the skies will open up and rain chocolate and gum drops on the people, war and famine will disappear, money will grow overnight in your mattress, and you will touch my robes and be healed. Look, this will happen because I say so, and a compliant mainstream media will dutifully go along with it. Come with me and your white guilt will be washed away. Look at my photo, I am only missing a halo. If I recall, Rolling Stone had it cropped out of the photo.

Everything will turn to gold, and if you argue or point out anything about me that is negative and true, off to the gallows or off with your head. If you support me and then become politically expendable, I will throw you under the bus... just ask my pastor & father figure, my underlings that I fire after mis-statements and my own gramma. I am so smart that I will not release my grades from college out of fear of what is on there that might puncture the one constant thing I keep waving as a reason to vote for me: that I'm smart. You think I even care about my wife? Look, I masturbate to photos of myself while standing in front of a mirror, preferably full length so I can bask in the glow that is my magnificence.

Winona Ryder

Warning: My second sexist piece coming, I think it's my mood today.

Did we ever find out if Winona Ryder's breasts were real? I'd vote no, but she is Jewish and from my experiences at Cornell, never underestimate the power of a Jewish woman to have curves no matter how small she is. I will tip my hat to her for pulling off the short hair look. That's a tough look for many women, yet she wears it well. Even the very short hair look like in Reality Bites**. Few women pull it off well, in Hollywood: Winona, Gwyneth Paltrow and Cynthia Daniel.
There was a period of several years where every nerd loved Winona Ryder. I think it was because she did all of those Indie flicks or small budget movies. Edward Scissorhands might be the movie that sold nerds on her being cool, and then nerds saw her in Reality Bites and flipped their lids. Maybe her roles blinded nerds into thinking she dug nerdy things. There's always this nerd fantasy that they will find a hot chick who will want to discuss "orcs vs. golbins from lord of the rings", "who would win a fight: Dilbert or Drew Carey" or the "politics of the post-Battle of Endor Star Wars galaxy". It's not going to happen. I'll probably write about this later, but this is a sub-category of the men who fantasize about capturing a woman and holding her at their place for months to then form a love bond with her (weird, I know). She is an actress, a Hollywood product, and an Adam Sandler costar. I have a feeling she would not be into nerd conversations. I think her conversations are full of "yeah", "totally", "like" and "ummm". I also think she is or was a 3 girl: 3 drinks or 3 compliments and you would be fine. I would not have dated her in college because she was not evil enough.
**One time I broke up with this girl, and I told her she was straight out of Reality Bites. Like 2 days later I was hanging out with a mutual friend, explaining the breakup, and the mutual friend called my ex. My ex had Reality Bites on DVD during the call. Yeah, no mental issues there that I could say she was out of a movie and then she'd go watch the movie to investigate my observation out of insecurity.

Nice Mugshot Heather Locklear

Despite the drug abuse and bad hair, Heather Locklear looks good in this mugshot. I'd rank it just ahead of Lohan's November 07 mugshot, miles ahead of Tawny Kitaen, and lightyears ahead of Yasmine Bleeth's.

I'd definitely smile in my mugshot. Just a cheeky smile, maybe not expose any teeth, but just enough that I show my dimples. No one is going to convict me with that smile? At least my Gramma said so.

Wow That's a Big Drop

Fuck the Pope with a fire iron, look at this. Is this Wall St. playing the baby "wahhhhh, i want my bailout, wahhh" or is it really a reflection of economic uncertainty in the credit markets? I'm going to go with a lot on uncertainty and a little on wahhh, I want my bailout. A lot is wrong in the financial markets. A lot of this is beyond the comprehension of everyone involved. All of this is the fault of everyone out there involved in the housing and easy credit system of the last 10 years. Everyone has some of the blame so let's not even bother to point fingers right now. Sadly, we'd be pointing the finger in the mirror if we were honest about this.

I'm shocked that the bill did not pass since the Dems have a majority in the house. They didn't need any GOp support,yet they did get 60+ GOP congressmen to vote with them. They lost 90+ Dems in the vote. How did Pelosi not have control over her minions? I hope this sends the message that they need to get back to the drawing board and draft something up with more taxpayer protection that has some stops in place so that if this goes bad it limits how much of a hit we take.

Everybody has to take a beating.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Everyone Has to Take a Beating

There is a quote at the beginning of Goodfellas where Henry Hill is talking about why he accepted his father's abuse, and it perfectly describes our banking system right now:

"Every once in awhile, I'd have to take a beating, but by then I didn't care. The way I saw it, everybody takes a beating sometimes."

The nation collectively has to take a beating right now. Some of us who saved when the banks were paying 1% on CDs, didn't buy into the housing bubble, paid our bills on time, earned enough money to pay taxes unlike 33% of the nation might be a little pissed right now after 7 years of the dollar losing value, inflation, and now a weird transfer of wealth that will have our mortgage and debt payments go to new debt holder-overlords all on the backs of taxpayer money that might take a loss. We've been doing what's "right", but we have to take a beating because it's only "fair".

Yes, you read that right 33% of American have no tax liability. None. So the next time someone says the Bush tax cuts helped only the rich, tell them that since Bush took office the number of slackers not paying any taxes went from 25% of the nation to 33%. Either candidate today will push it to over 40%. I won't be one of them. Is this "fair" Obama? Is it fair for nearly half of the nation to pay nothing in taxes? I'm not rich, so why do I pay and nearly half of America does not? Why do we have stimulus rebate checks that go to people who didn't pay any taxes at all last year? What is that a rebate of? How do you rebate nothing?

My prediction will be for an Obama victory in November, with a pretty long recession in 2009 and into 2010. Then it is a race to see how fast we can have a recovery in time for the 2012 election. If the economy can truly recover, Obama can win reelection provided he doesn't fuck up by trying to install nationalized health care. If not, well toodaloo Obama. As my friend who works in Washington and writes here agrees, the GOP will put Romney on their ticket as the "businessman" to fix our economic problems... even if he is a slimeball.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Mary Louise Parker Naked.... What?!?!??!?!

Mary Louise Parker, recently awarded soem recognition from yours truly, has stripped naked for her show on TV that has slipped in quality. Really sad when a premium cable show of good quality suddenly starts to go downhill so they start abusing the premium cable loophole of showing nudity. Entourage does not count, as that show never was good and it always showed boobs. Entourage only had Jeremy Piven going for it. When Kevin Dillon is the second best actor, and actually entertaining, you have a problem. That show was set up for a perfect dramatic story arc from start to finish, but they fucked up and marketed it as a comedy. Throwing boobs into each episode does not make you funny nor a comedy. It makes you soft core porn for 10 year olds to stay up to watch because their parents lock them off the computer. Thank you Mary Louise Parker, but just end the series, for everyone.

Negative Selection

To wrap up the wildest week I have seen in the business world, Carl Icahn was on television stating that many CEOs are the product of negative selection or more appropriate here. As he said, people with ambition and ability make waves, and no manager likes that so they get fired, passed over, or set off to the side. This happens in many governments (especially crony dictatorships and oligarchies). Sadly, as many managers and vice presidents of companies view their goal in corporate america as building and preserving their empire, they start making decisions along these negative seletion lines.

Everyone has seen it. There is the person who should get the job, but there is the person who does get the job because they are a kiss ass, not as qualified and not a threat to the person who made the hiring decision. This disgusts me because I believe in a business organization based on a meritocracy. If ever put in a position of power over promotions, assignments and hiring, I promise myself to stay true to this principle. The day that I do not follow it, is the day I slap myself in the face and wake up from whatever bitchiness I may have slipped into.

Self preservation and greed are two features of human nature that are really tough to overcome. Self Preservation has been hard wired into us since the days of the caves. A coworker of mine was saying how we are all greedy (moneywise), and I said "ehhhhhh, I'll disagree". I believe people will take a quick, easy buck, and that lottery attitude has spread throughout the nation (see the explosive growth of poker/casinos). Greedy, in an evil intent, is something taught or unlocked inside of you. I'll use a family member as an example. I have a cousin who was an asshole in the 80s with baseball cards. He never met a younger kid he didn't swindle out of a good card or a sweettalk into a bad trade. Where'd he learn it from? His dad. Twenty years later, he's stuck in a home he bought at the peak thinking he could buy the crappy dump of a house off of an old widow, turn it around and flip it in time for a nice profit. Didn't happen. Is he greedy? Yes. Is his sister? No.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Tarvaris Jackson: Whenever I watch This Jackass Play QB....

Whenever I see this idiot play QB, I think had my shoulder held up, I could have played in the NFL. He's my height, we've got the same good deep throw, and even though he has 50 lbs and more footspeed than I, his decision making abilities (as well as intelligence) are much worse than mine. I know in reality, I never ever could have made it, but you get my point. This guy is awful and never should have started in the league. The Vikings are wasting a good defense and great run game (Thank you Purple Jesus!) with him and Gus Frerotte at the helm. How Tarvaris Jackson was drafted in the 2nd round of the NFL draft boggles my mind. He went to a division 1-AA school. The last guy drafted at QB from a D 1-AA school to start in the NFL was in 1992. I know he has worked hard to improve, but he just does not cut it. The Vikings should have traded for McNabb or Derek Anderson. They'd be Super Bowl bound. Enough said.
On second thought, as far as footspeed, his NFL combine 4.65 40 yard dash was at age 23 after lots of training. I ran a 4.9 on a basketball court in winter track at age 18. Maybe we aren't that different. Hahahahahahahaha.

Just Mindblowing

Look at the 3 month US treasury bond yield. This is no yield. This is just "let me put my money somewhere that I can confirm its existence tomorrow". This is amazing to watch unfold, and I am so happy I sold out of my S&P fund last fall. I will re-enter the S&P again through the Vanguard 500 index fund or the entire US market through the Total stock market index fund after some more dropitude.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Weird List for a Country that Loves List

I saw this list on Slate's website and chuckled. In an aging world that appears to be slowly turning into a giant nursing home, it makes sense to create an arbitrary list of the most influential people over 80. Interesting that they would put a Supreme Court Justice at the top of the list. After all, he might have the deciding vote in a handful of cases that affect Americans. If something huge got to the Supreme Court and was split down the middle 4-4 and he decided the outcome, I could see this, but this feels like a MSM attempt to play up how important the Supreme Court is, "see, this is what matters to you peons".

I find it very interesting that Jimmy Carter who likes to talk to Hamas is #19 on the list, whereas George H.W. Bush, who has the current president's ear the last 8 years, is ranked #72. Dumb. Billy Graham seems a tad low since the dude is 89 and still has huge television specials and reaches millions. I can see T. Boone Pickens at #3, and I think spending money to promote the cool Pickens Plan on national TV out of his own pocket is an amazing sign of influence. John Bennet Fenn, Alfred E. Mann, Robert Morgenthau, and Oliver Smithies could stand to be ahead of some of the other d-bags from Hollywood listed. I find it curious the amount of Hollywood actors, directors, etc. that are on the List. Here's what the bio should read for these people....

Liz Smith: The old windbag that was on E! before E! went all reality TV. Should you really concern yourself with the dumbass social scene 'reporting she does? Hell, just go ask Dominick Dunne for the scoop.

Joe Paterno: Old coach of Penn State football who just discovered MASH. This guy influences how drunk Pennsylvanians get on Saturdays in the fall.

Stan Lee: Because of this guy, you have to suffer through really bad adaptations of his comic book creations. Break his right hand if you meet him to rpevent further pain.

Mary Higgins Clark: You can now read on the beach because of this dame.

Tony Bennett: Thankfully, he outlived his contemporaries and therefore, people liked him again. He likes things that are great, great things are fantastic.

Paul Newman: Au-sum. One tough mutherfucker. The oldest man most women would still have sex with.

Mel Brooks: A guy who peaked in 1974 and does not know how to finish a movie or end a third act. He whores out his classics for more paychecks, which he then re-releases as movies (The Producers). Somehow landed Anne Bancroft. Should be shot to prevent us from seeing "Space Balls: The Musical".

Maya Angelou: Tired of being confused with Toni Morrison if only because it makes her feel horrible since Morrison is a far superior writer. She also was not the woman on "touched by an angel" so knock it off.

Hal Holbrook: Up until he really showed his age, this was the guy that was cast as every single smooth Southern gentleman. Awesome head of hair.

John McLaughlin: He's been one of the most entertaining political commentators for years and is incredibly easy to imitate. "Wrrrrrong!" Sadly, one of the few guys in the last 30 years who has had a balanced show with libs and conservatives.

Pinetop Perkins: Your guess is as good as mine.

Cloris Leachman: Held up well and always plays that zany old Aunt character on tv shows.

James Lipton: Wait, this dude is 81. Hold the phones. I don't know how interviewing people in the most pretentious manner possible places you on any list besides "Hollywood"s Biggest D-bags".

Bob Barker: Hated by animals everywhere.

Carl Reiner: "Hi do you need an old Jewish uncle or grampa on your show? Call me". In older films and shows, I like this guy's work. Then he just settled into the old Jewish guy role. Judd Hirsch has been rumored to have tried to kill him for more gigs (joking, I don't need a libel charge).

Andrew Wyeth: Fuck you for Christina's World. That painting nearly killed me my 8th grade year.


Helen Gurley Brown: This woman is responsible for that time your girlfriend puts her finger in your ass while performing oral on you without warning. Not cool.

Sen. Obama Please Stick to the Issues, That's How You Will Win

Ok so this ad mentions one issue item and really pokes fun at McCain being old. No fear there at making fun of old people because they never vote. Wait a second, they do vote, and is massive hordes, and I bet they already have some issues with pulling the lever for a black man. Sorry grandparents, you guys do. This doesn't help.

The major problem with the ad is that it has blowback that hurts the Messiah v. 2.0 and helps McCain. It calls to attention McCain's war injuries at the hands of his Vietnamese torturers. He has stated typing at a keyboard hurts his hands because of war injuries so he dictates all his emails. This will look like a petty joke in poor taste, which he's been doing recently (see lipstick and pig). God forbid someone come back froma war zone and not be able to perform small things like emailing because they sacrificed for our sweet freedom. For such a 'smart guy' you have no common sense.

Look, Sen. Obama. I know you're new to this campaigning outside of corrupt Illinois political machine area, but you should elaborate on your policy ideas instead of being vague, point out what you want to do to help this banking/housing crisis since this administration is going to hand it off to the next Prez, and how you will be tough on bad guys in foreign policy. Stick to the issues and you win. If you have to take "shots" at McCain/Palin, hammer away at how conservative they are. Stick to them being conservative and you win.

Gosh, they truly should have nominated Hillary.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Other Shoe Never Dropped

My entire year, my friends and I held our breath. We kept waiting for it. We knew it would happen at Ramadan, then New Year's Eve, then the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. It did not come. "Well, they are being patient, taking the long view and planning something big". That was my thought for the first couple years. Then they arrested these guys in their sleep, in huts, in random slums in Pakistan and performed undercover ops to bust people trying to supply the bad guys. Then a couple years became a few, then five, and now seven years have passed. I have not agreed with everything that has gone down, but that rarely happens in anything. Today I say "Thank you" to the men and women of our Armed Forces, FBI, CIA, and yes, the dynamic & hard-ass duo of President Bush and Vice President Cheney. They have a few more months, and then they hand off the reins to someone new, having (so far) held up their end of the bargain when they said "not on our watch".

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Poseur of the Month: Lenny Kravitz

It took a while to find someone who irked me so much that I had to post about them being a goddamn poseur. Once I accepted it, I found I had this disgust for Lenny Kravitz that I had been repressing for years. Wait, I love this guy's music. It's incredibly grooving, timeless and always has a good beat. I even like his depressing stuff like the entire album dedicated to his mother's death. He even got down with Lisa Bonet, and they gave the planet a hot daughter. What is wrong with this guy and what did he do to push me over the edge? He is headlining this gawd awful advertising campaign for the 'new love revolution' ads for Kohl's.

This sent me on a google search for Lenny Kravitz ads on "the Google". This man has amazing talent, and it is obvious he can write music, sing and play instruments well. Why is he selling out to everyone under the sun? Money? The guy was born to a music industry man and an actress that anyone who grew up in the late 70s and early 80s knows. Nissan used his big comeback hit "Fly Away" within a year of Fly Away being released as a single for an SUV advert. Tommy Hilfiger, Absolut, Gap, Kohl's, and Levi's jeans have all used his stuff. All the while, this cocksucker writes music about love and peace for 20 fricking years. That's a great theme, and love might be the greatest feeling of all time, but can you progress a little and write a different tune? Stop writing about peace & love and railing against corporations while simultaneously taking millions in by whoring yourself out.

You are a product. You are no longer a musician. You are the output of a system wonderfully described in "Welcome to the Machine" and "Have a Cigar" by the immortal band, Pink Floyd. Stop pretending, and admit what you are: a marionette that they put costumes on and use to sell non-durable goods.

Monday, September 08, 2008

What if no one notices the end coming.... part 2

I am still shocked that Iraq was become such a background issue that the Dems can't even use it to hammer away at McCain and Palin. That is good news though, because as an army buddy of mine once said "if they report nothing, that's good". Ok, so the first report I read said up to 8K troops would be coming home in January-February of 2009. This report says 3-5K. I wonder if they mean just 3-5K combat troops, since the first report I read said 3-5K combat troops and corresponding support troops which would push the number to 8K. Either way, this combined with the surge troops being sent home this spring-summer is a start. That would be nearly 30K fewer US troops in Iraq in January of 2009 than in January of 2008. This is a start. Both candidates discuss leaving some troops behind on bases, which I support as the Middle East of today is like what Germany, Italy and France were in the Cold War, with the number between 20K and 75K (this was in one of Obama's ever changing views on the subject; he called it a "strike force").

If this is a hint, I don't know what else is. My friend Josh was trained in Arabic with a specialty in the Iraqi dialect, but instead of being shipped to Iraq, he's going to Afganistan. As he said, lots of foreign fighters there speak Arabic. I won't get lame and say "i remember when he was a kid playing tackel football at Christmas", because one day... So he was always the little brother despite being 6 foot 3, 230 lbs. His big bro (one of my best friends) could always toss him around. One hot afternoon, they got horsing around in the pool. Suddenly, whoomp, Josh had slammed Al down and held him under water. It was the day the power shifted. He gave one of the best "best man" speeches I ever heard, and it was a joy to be an usher with him at his brother's wedding. I wish him the best.

As always, thank you troops and veterans of all eras for your sacrifice and efforts.

Vote for Me or My VP & I Will Rip Your Head Off!

Vote for me punk or I'll headbutt your ass back to your momma's vag. Threats don't work, you want me to earn your vote? I can't wait for the debates when I can kick the shit out of that effeminate, skinny whiner from Illinois. Yeah, I know I am nearly 25 years older, but who you gonna pick in a brawl? Some manorexic egghead who wrote a book about living confused until he found his roots with his dad's family, therefore rejecting everything about his mom's side that raised him until it was politically convenient, yet still abandoning those African roots as his half brother lives on $1 a day in Kenya, or the guy who wrote a book about his personal and his family's kick ass history of becoming 4 star Admirals, fighter pilots and pro-asskickers? I thought so. I was in Wedding Crashers and you know what else was? Naked boobs. Speaking of boobs, I even picked a running mate that could sniper him from 1000 ft away with her heels on. I bet the recoil would knock captain arugula down. How about that too? Leave it to the GOP to find a MILF for the national ticket. I found a female running mate who has killer legs and looks different enough from my wife that I will know not to sleep with her unlike that lobbysit with the saucy pout.

Hi John! Let's kick the shit out of that "community organizer" and the old blowhard! I wonder if some female voters will forget how socially conservative I am and just vote for me because I am a working mom. Isn't it grand how the media is being completely sexist even though they would never dare do this to a Democrat? I guess only they should try to break glass ceilings. Damn, I could take my AR-15 and cap some NY Times limousine liberals right now.

Oh god, do I want to bend you over when you say things like that. You're getting me excited, and my next hard on could be my last. Maybe we could shoot some target practice and then get down, or in reverse, whatever you like. I've got to focus. I'm not going out like Nelson Rockefeller. I'm going out in a blaze of glory. I'll either flame out in a debate as people will view me as being too tough on the thin skinned Messiah (because foreign leaders won't be tough???) or we'll win, but I'll turn Iran into a glass lake that we'll drill through for oil, and you and the Senate will remove my presidential 'powers' from me because of concern for my senility.... leading to a Mark Warner presidency in 2012.

(Editor's note: I have a lot of respect for Sen. McCain. I supported him in 2000, but I read up on him over the last 8 years, finding out just how conservative the guy is. Not my cup of tea. I dont get why more of the GOP base doesn't see this and get thrilled. He's too conservative for me. Plus, I know all politicians are bought and paid for by special interests whether corporate or lame hippie groups.)

Wipe That Smug Look Off Your Face Mister

Oh gosh, how I have to remind myself of this all of the time now. Why? Because it is wrong to feel satisfied with yourself when others bitch about their predicaments that were self imposed.

Oh, so buying a 1000 square foot home off outer Forest Ave in Portland for $200,000 was a bad idea? You just get that now? Oh so now you stood up to your wife who browbeat you into a big wedding and then buying a home only 12 months after that wedding by saying "no honey we won't buy a plasma tv"? Why did you not listen when I suggested the same house in Saco for $150,000? I bet that $50K less in mortgage liability would come in handy for paying rising gas bills. Wait, why did you put $0 down? Oh, because "they" said it was OK to do that? When does anyone who earns a % based fee involved in a money transaction tell you something is OK that would increase future liability and that advice actually benefits you? Oh so now a mortgage to income ratio of 45% is hurting you? Now it is? Not when you first got the home and the first appraisal raised your house "worth" up to $210K. You mean to tell me it's now worth only $185K. Funny how these same people said it was worth $210K a year ago, and $200K the year before that. Being underwater sucks, maybe that's why people used to put 10-20% down. Oh so now you suggest I not get a house right now because of the downside risk even though you wish you were buying because it is a buyers' market? Yeah, I'll listen to you. Wait a second, you don't want people to get bailed out of their foreclosures by a government program even though a government program allowed you to get the loan and not put a down payment on your home? Yeah, let's listen to you and your brilliant decisions.

Oh, on top of all of that you are a Patriots fan? Oh well, I am soooo sorry your blessed Tawmmy Boy got hurt. It's really a shame.

Go fuck yourself.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Yacht Rock

Yacht Rock is sometimes referred to as mom rock for children of the '80s as this was music on the light FM stations that our moms would listen to when cleaning the house on Sunday. I have always found it odd how incestuous the music scene was in California in the '70s. There are eleven 5 minute "episodes". Episode 11 is one of the funniest, but I thought I'd share episode one and you can search from there.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

What's Worse?

The amount of makeup that they put on Shawn Johnson so you maybe forget she is 16 or the voices on the Hamm brothers who wussed out of the Olympics while our plucky team of underdogs got the bronze without them???????

I Want On, Hold Up, Wait for the Crash

Paint hides wear and tear
No conductor yet more jump on
Anxious for the crash

Monday, September 01, 2008

Drifting Towards Engagement on My Terms

I have previously discussed being a libertarian. As I get older and see more corruption, not just locally but globally, I tend to drift towards anarcho-capitalism. Rational Anarchy would be a better descriptor, as I do believe given an explanation of the parameters of one's existence and surroundings that there is no state to protect an individual, the individual would act in a way to continue their existence and interact with the society around them per their best interests for survival. They would not just go around mindlessly killing others, because their actions would alert others who would then stop that individual. It's a pipe dream, but I could envision it on a smaller scale setting like mining towns, frontiers, remote farming villages.

Inspiration for this was seeing a terrible performance of a production that talked about what we have in common & how we keep separating ourselves despite the things we have in common. Yes, we do that now to a greater degree with the Internet. We also connect with people we would never have met in person though with the help of the Internet. There are two sides to the coin. I would rather describe it as we are choosing the terms that we engage the outside world. Some can use the technology at our fingertips to enter echo chambers of our preconceived notions. Others can use technology to discover new things, meet new people, and maybe even changed their ideas about an issue. In an admission of my own development of reaching new conclusions, I am a big supporter oo gay civil unions and even polygamy (not Mormon teenage bride style) if it is between consenting adults and every adult agrees. What adults choose to do on their own terms with other adults of sound mind is their choice. I would have been against both 5 years ago, but after reading, surfing the web, talking to others, and most importantly, asking questions, I have come around on both ideas.

It's About Choice

Surrounded by wonderful dancers and artists last night, I heard one of them discuss how they just had their baby and no longer want to work in their job unless they can bring him to work. In response to this predicament, the woman has chosen to quit her job and set up a business on her own that will be home based, but involve leaving the home on her terms. She can bring the child along on those short trips. The funny comment was when she said "I had August and instead of saying 'I gotta got o work and be adult woman', I thought not unless I can be with him. i want to be with him all of the time". I think that is awesome and is what feminism is all about: the opporunity to have the choice.

As my generation was the first to get sexual harassment training in grade school, multicultural sensitivity in middle school, and then everybody is a precious snowflake training in high school, I always enjoy hearing someone not toe the line that was shoved in our heads at school. You know that one that went "feminists fought for you to go get a job and remove the glass ceiling, don't you dare give that up to have a baby or get married". I dislike being told what to do, and especially dislike when the schools tell children that a certain way is the right way rather than let them find out what works in the real world. You end up with scores of people racing to 'make a career' yet feeling completely empty inside.

My mom and my eldest aunt were trailblazers in working in more male dominated lines of work with a family to also tend to. I have great respect for their balancing act between corporate america and raising kids before the age of family leave, flexible work hours, subsidized day care, on site day care, and bosses that are fired if they are not sensitive to your needs. One current coworker told me a story of her boss complimenting her ass right after she gave birth to her first born way back in 1979. We laughed about it, and I gave her the "you got my respect" talk. I was always surrounded by strong women growing up who played hardball. This is part why I have problems with young women my age complaining about things at work. It's easy now compared to what it was back when rude comments out loud were the norm, and sex on business trips was expected. That's why I find it a source of happiness that a woman is going to choose to go down a path that makes her happy rather than fit into the box of what her friends, peers, college classmates or coworkers expect.

(I know I am not alone with this line of thought).

NFL Preview and Predictions

Another NFL season is about to begin, exciting many American males who were bored by the OK NBA playoffs, long middle period of the MLB season and an Olympics showcasing synchronized diving, ping pong and other lames sports as much as the good sports. I'm going to do a quick rundown of who finishes where, and some short commentary after each division....

AFC (L)East
1. Patriots
2. Jets (Wild Card)
3. Dolphins
4. Bills

The horrible AFC East got an upgrade with the arrival of Favre in NY and Parcells in Miami. The Pats have an easy schedule and are still the dominant team in the division, but the Jets could give them fits with a true QB in town. The Dolphins have made soem upgrades, and I see them surprising some teams, whereas the Bills are horribly run and will suffer this year. I would love to see the Bills shock teams, but they need new ownership and management. I do think this is the year the Pats lose the fight with age.

AFC North
1. Cleveland
2. Pittsburgh
3. Cincy
4. Baltimore

Cleveland should win this division more because of the Pittsburgh Steelers' having the league's toughest schedule than from their efforts. Baltimore failed to make amove for any QB to remedy their headless offenses situation. If they had a decent QB, just replacement level, I would leapfrog them over Cincy. Something feels wrong with Cincy. It's like Marvin Lewis' ideas have run their course, and the team needs to blow up and start over.

AFC South
1. Indy
2. Jacksonville (wild card)
3. Houston
4. Tenn

I nearly swapped Indy and Jacksonville. Jacksonville did nothing to improve their receiving corps even with their terrible signings, and the D lost some guys. Indy's defense has Freeney back, after a stellar season without Freeney. the colts are one of the youngest teams int he league, and with last year's experience under their belt, they know how to win tough games at home and on the road. The only issue I see with them is Manning's health. If healthy, they get 12 wins. If not, sayonara. Houston could end up over .500 this season, and will benefit from having a last place schedule despite going .500 last year. If Matt Schaub can stay healthy, the Texans can stretch the field on teams. Tenn is still using Vince Young at QB. I do not see them reaching the playoffs in that scenario, even if they did it last year.

AFC West
1. San Diego
2. Denver
3. Oakland
4. KC

San Diego should run away with this division. The only concern I have for them is how Rivers handles his knee, and the cross country flights they have to make on consecutive weeks, which blows my mind that the NFLl arranges after every season San Diego does awesome. Gay. I Like Denver this year, and think they could challenge for a wild card. It rests on Cutler's development. I like Oakland taking a baby step forward. They had a good running game, and had a defense that started off terrible and got better as the year progressed. KC has Herm Edwards as a coach, and despite their good draft on paper, they still stink.

NFC East
1. Dallas
2. Philly (wild card)
3. NY Giants
4. Redskins

Dallas has stocked the team to win it this year or next. The collection of talent is amazing, deep and young. The secondary was their weak spot last year on defense, but they added Pac Man Jones and drafted Mike Jenkins to give them depth in the defensive backfield. Their weakest spot is at WR. Still, that was the O's weak spot last year and they did well. Philly is dangerous because they finished .500 yet have a weak schedule. They should win 9-10 games unless the window has officially closed on them. They managed to find a way to grind out games though and then choke in the playoffs. The NY Giants will have a monster let down year, and the defense lost virtually everyone of importance it seems this offseason due to free agency, retirement or injury. The Redskins suck. Plain and simple.

NFC North
1. Minnesota
2. Green Bay
3. Chicago
4. Detroit

Minnesota should win 10 games this year due to their defense and running game. I have a feeling the QB will be replaced by week 8. They could run the single wing and win games rather than use him. Green Bay will return to earth and experience the growing pains of Rodgers. Shouldn't have rushed Brett favre out of the door in the spring. Chicago is a team I feel bad for. Great defense and special teams but they do nothing to remedy their QB situation. They also have an all new RB to share the load while they watch Thomas Jones run for fun in NY. Good call there Bears. Detroit sucks. Kitna still makes braindead decisions, which kills their drives. Concussions can cause that.

NFC South
1. New Orleans
2. Carolina (wild card)
3. Tampa Bay
4. Atlanta

New Orleans should have a big bounce back year with an easier schedule, the addition of Shockey, the return of Deuce, and the boosts to the defense they pulled off this offseason. I like them to win 10-11. Carolina is going to surprise people. They went 7-9 last year with a decimated offense. John Fox is a great coach, and I see him turning it around this year. Tampa will crash back to earth. Their offense isn't surprising people this year, and they play a 1st place schedule, which means pencil in 3 losses. Atlanta is rebuilding, and will rebuild for a couple more years.

NFC West
1. Arizona
2. Seattle
3. St. Louis
4. San Fran

I can't stand Seattle, and will predict their decline for the second time. I like how Arizona's coaching staff has their plan of attack and are changing the culture in the organization as well as the team's play. I think it will pay off this year. St. Louis is rebuilding, and I am not gambling on them surprising anyone this eyar, but they should exceed the play of San Fran. I can't wait for Mike Nolan to be fired by week 10. I do feel bad for Frank Gore. He deserves to have a real offense around him.

Awards - Well I got one award prediction right last year but here goes.....

MVP - Drew Brees
Defensive POY - Demarcus Ware
Offensive Rookie of the Year - Darren McFadden
Defensive Rookie of the Year - Kenny Phillips

AFC Playoffs
Jacksonville over Cleveland
Pats over Jets

Indy over Pats
San Diego over Jacksonville

San Diego over Indy

NFC Playoffs
Philly over Arizona
Minnesota over Carolina

Dallas over Philly
New Orleans over Minnesota

Dallas over New Orleans

Super Bowl
Dallas over San Diego

If both teams make it to here, I will be impressed that talent on paper really does translate into victories. This would be my second year of picking San Diego making it to the Super Bowl. I picked them last year to win it all, but injuries prevented them from pulling it off. Dallas just has too much talent not to make it to the SB coming from the NFC. I also think Shawne Merriman's health will factor greatly into how far the Chargers go in the playoffs. If he isn't top notch, then they have problems with their pass rush. Dallas seems to have more depth on their defense, and even in their playoff loss last year, they stopped the Giants 3 and out multiple times with less than 6 mins to go. They just need to execute. If they do, the Super Bowl trophy is theirs.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

People Love What Ifs.... Hitler Wins This Time

In the last few months, I have read books on the rise and fall of the 3rd reich, Stalin's triwsted and cruel dictatorship of Russia, and the conflict between the Nazis & Soviets in WW2. Previously, I blogged about multiple ways Hitler could have been stopped before World War 2 became a huge Euro-conflict. The Pacific theater would have still been a major event without the Euro action. I will discuss how Hitler could have won the Euro theater that he was doomed to lose. I say doomed because from a materials and manpower standpoint, by late December of 1941 he was taking on two of most industrious nations in the World with combined populations far greater than greater Germany and Russia, which ruined Napolean and the French.

Hitler and Germany's main problem was that they did not understand the British and underestimated the Americans. They could not understand why the British would not 'settle' with them, when for decades if not centuries the policy of England was to not allow one nation to dominate the Continent. Their view of Americans was very weak because they did not have a network of spies there, and fell back on crass racial views of the country. Hitler was dumb enough to say that once he had settled Europe, he would move to take on America. This moves beyond his idea of just achieving "Lebensraum" for the Germans in the east. He never thought Americans would fight, as the Jazz Age must have twisted German views of America. After the spring of 1941, Hitler had virtually every country in Europe either allied with him or under occupation. Britain stood alone. America was not directly involved yet, and the Russians were "buddies". How could he have kept the momentum going and set the Reich up for a long reign. I'll start with least likely, and then move to closest to what truly happened, as Hitler was a frickin' psychopath who would not stop with his obsession of destroying the Bolsheviks and gaining lebensraum (see Mein Kampf). Somethign twisted with how the Soviets and the Nazis were on complete opposite ends of the spectrum and geographic neighbors, and almost had to tussle on an epic proportion.

Not going to happen but most likely would have worked....

1. Do nothing more. Set up a European Union with Germany the dominant country. Defend against British air raids, and try to show the rest of the world that you don't mean Britain harm, hoping that other world leaders will force the UK to settle. Then carry out his horrible policies against eastern europe, hoping the current eastern european landmass would be enough lebensraum. At that point, an EU dominated by Germany could have served as a weird balance between the USA/UK and the USSR.

2. Think globally. Hurt the British Empire, faking an invasion of the UK but moving against them elsewhere. Do not force the Battle of Britain, therefore losing tons of planes and other materials. Instead, seize Gibraltar (with or without the Spanish) and Malta, run the length of the Mediterranean southern coast to the Suez canal and go for the oil fields in Syria, Jordan, Iraq, etc. Hitting the Brits in the Imperial groin would have been effective at cutting their supply of raw materials, forcing a settlement. Being cut off from raw materials and starving, the Brits would have settled if it left their island intact and not destroyed by invasion nor bombing. This would have provided the oil to keep the war machine going against a potential war with Russia. After reading several sources, one of Hitler's goals of invading Russia was getting to raw materials and oil resources. I don't understand why he took on the Russian bear to get to the Middle East instead of trying to softer underside of the Mediterranean. Then attack Russia with Operation Barbarossa.

Now we get closer to what actually happened. Taking on Russia without finishing off the UK was Hitler's downfall. Taking on Russia alone still would have been Hitler's downfall.

3. An invasion of Russia through Turkey. Either negotiate passage through Turkey with their government's blessing or just inade them as Germany invaded neutral Belgium and Holland. From there, either go to the Middle East and secure some oil resources for a later invasion of Russia or use Eastern Turkey as a staging grounds for a blitz up the Caucasus Mountains to grab the Caspian Sea and Caucasus oil fields by surprise and cut up through the south of Russia. The Russians were truly surprised by Operation Barbarossa, even though agents gave them the exact date of the invasion. They did not believe the Germans would do it. That element of surprise would still be there in this plan, but they could attack the Russian oil field area first, as well as attack the Ukraine through Southeastern Europe. This still would have left Troops available to attack through the Minsk-Moscow axis. All this plan does is shift resources down from the Northern Attack route (and some from the central attack) to a southern route. The Russians would expect a direct assault, so they would concentrate forces on the path to Moscow rather than try to stop a Caucasus invasion, which unbeknownest to them would be the primary objective. It nabs precious resources when the Russkis are asleep instead of a failed attempt a year after the Russians are on alert as happened in real life. In real history, when the Germans did make it to some of the oil fields, the Russians had destroyed them just in time sot hat the Germans reached the spot for nothing. With surprise, they could have kept some oil intact. This would have stabilized the natural resource problem for the Germans, and would have prevented the rapid transport of industry that kept the Soviet war machine alive since they would have cut off some railroads going east to the Urals and Siberia. If this were as successful as the initial 5 months of Barbarossa, this would have forced the Soviets to settle (which they made feeble attempts to in late '41) or courageously fall back to Kuibyshev or further east. Either way, it puts the evil Nazis in a better spot than the original Barbarossa.

4. Force the Japanese to take some action of the Soviets eastern side as a condition for waging war against America if the Japanese are attacked. Hitler's foreign policy team was weak, and after initial success, he lost his ability to read his opponents. Hitler was dumb in declaring war on the USA, which I will tackle next, but he could have forced the Japanese to give some support vs. Russia. The japanese were smart, so even just limited engagement would have helped the German cause. The Japanese knew the Russians were fierce after skirmishes in the late '30s with Russia in Manchuria, but the least they could have done was bomb Russian military installations, camps, supply depots, etc. timed with the start of Barbarossa. Creating a two front war for Russia would have been too much for the Soviets. The Soviets' sacrifice was great in WW2, but attacks on the East or even just bombings by the well trained and experienced Japanese air squadrons in spring of '41, would have been too much. part of the Soviets strength was their ability to bring in millions of men from the east to concentrate on the Nazis. With Japan wiping out material and some men at the start, those reinforcements are partially gone. With a menace in the East, the Soviets have to decide how to split resources. In 1941, with Stalin controlling so much of the decision making, this probably would have been a horrendous defeat.

5. As Operation Barbarossa rolled through Belorussia and the Ukraine, the Germans act friendly to the natives and ask them to help the fight against the Soviets. The Soviet regime had been horrible to the Ukraine. Instead of wasting time slaughtering civilians, the Germans should have been "nice" and offered liberation in exchange for cooperation. Making the war a war against the Soviet regime instead of vs. Russia would have helped the propaganda side and the hearts and minds battle. The Soviet regime had a tenuous grasp on the country, and they turned the war against Germany as a war for Russia which gave the regime credibility and rallied the people. Friendly natives and resources directed against fighting instead of genocide would have gone a long way in not just attacking the Soviets but in creating a better defense if they had to fall back.

Everything happens as it does in real history except one thing in December of 1941...

6. Do not declare war on the USA. Germany did not have to declare war on America because their agreement with Japan said they would fight with Japan in the event Japan was attacked. This is Hitler at his dumbest, because he stupidly takes on another giant foe when there is no need to do so. This would be a roll of the dice that America would not declare war on Germany, which if you read the history books, is a credible possibility. America was extremely isolationist in the 1930s, and even after Pearl Harbor, the desire was to take down the Japanese as they had attacked us. FDR understood the dangers of the Nazis, and allowed the British and Russians to swing him into the "Germany first, Japan second" plan of attack. American planners imagined a German defeat in maybe 1946, and at best a Japanese defeat two years later. It's amazing how history unfolds. I still think this results in a German defeat. On the other hand, without American supplies to the Brits & Russians and manpower in the Mediterranean, Atlantic and eventually the Italian and French invasions, it would have been a long hard fight for the Russians with the Brits just providing bombings on Germany and naval warfare. In the end, I would envision the Soviet troops marching their way across the Continent and turning Europe into a giant collection of Communist states.

Hitler was going to lose with his course of action, and the world is better for his loss. It is horrifying to think of what would have happened had Hitler won. Would the world have been in a never ending battle of free countries vs. Germany and her client states? Yes. How many more Jews and non-Germans would have died in an expanded Holocaust? Millions. Would a Cold War with Germany been even uglier than the real Cold War? Possibly, see below. Would the Russkis have just fallen back to the Urals creating a never ending guerilla front for the Germans to continuously fight and the USA to secretly encourage the Russians to continue? Most likely. When would they have got the A-bomb, and where would they use it first? Hard to say, but launching one on a V-2 rocket from a submarine at London, Washington or NYC is a distinct possiblity. With their head start in rocket technology, that is the scariest thought. Would the Germans have reached space and the moon first since their leading rocket scientist became the father of NASA (Thanks Operation Paperclip) and placed weapons in space? Cold War would have been mighty chilly with nuclear winter or EMP weapons usage. These are all horrible things to consider, and thankfully, they are just what ifs.