Archive for the ‘haha’ Category

… [W]hen Bush was last in Riyadh in January, his appeals to the Saudi government to increase oil production were quickly, albeit politely, rebuffed, allowing his political opponents at home to criticize him and accuse him of “begging.”

But this time around, a plan appears to have been in store between the Bush administration and the Saudi government. The Saudi announcement allows Bush to return home and claim that his influence worked in getting the Saudis to bend. In reality, however, an additional 300,000 bpd is unlikely to have much of a global impact on crude oil prices. …

Moreover, Saudi Arabia took 300,000 bpd of its crude offline for maintenance back in April. This move was typical for the season, …. By mid-May, that cycle is complete, allowing major energy producers like Saudi Arabia to adjust their maintenance schedules accordingly. In all likelihood, Saudi Arabia has simply completed its own maintenance and was scheduled to bring 300,000 bpd back online anyway to meet the summer demand. …

That would explain the announcement’s complete lack of impact on crude prices (I presume it was decided before close of markets today). Pure PR.

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That’s what happens when you have someone like Fred Thompson run a fraudulent, stalking-horse campaign solely to fracture the southern white/ evangelical vote.

People don’t just “take” a limitation of choices, as Thompson inflicted upon the party. They stay unhappy.

Voters may be dumb. Just not as dumb as GOP strategists think. Black turnout across the South will be through the roof, and white evangelical turnout will be depressed. November will bring nasty surprises for the GOP, not least of which will be a crippling “blue shift” in North Carolina and Virginia.

That said, considering idiotic posts like this, I don’t blame the GOP strategoi for appraising the Republican grasstops as the useful idiots they are:

This morning, Senator John McCain speaks at Wake Forest University. The speech begins at 10:00 a.m. Present with him will be Senator Fred Thompson. That’s important.

We’ve seen already that Thompson has been more visible in recent weeks. Why? Well, he’s decided to come out and support his friend. He is for conservatives what Joe Lieberman is for moderate squishes — a reassurance that John McCain will hear us. And given Thompson’s track record of getting McCain to listen to him, which is very good, we should take comfort in his presence by McCain today and on the campaign trail.

No, I don’t think this signals “Thompson as Veep.” In fact, I’m positive it does not. What I do think this signals is that Thompson is the guy McCain will listen to on conservative issues — Thompson will be the judge sherpa, making sure there are no Harriet Miers moments and plenty of John Roberts moments. …

I can practically hear the DCers laughing from here …

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“Greenspan came onto my radar screen in the late sixties as a seller
of economic and financial advice to the investment industry. To be
brutally honest, he was considered run of the mill by anyone I knew
then or have met later who knew his service then. His high point in
most memories, was a famous call in January 1973 that, “it is rare
that you can be as unqualifiedly bullish as you now can,” a few days
before a market decline of over 60% in real terms, second only to the
Great Crash in a century, accompanied also by a bitter recession.
This was one of the first of a long line of terrible prognostications
for which he has remarkably not been remembered, except by a handful
of us amateur historians. “

–Jeremy Grantham, on Alan Greenspan

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Not sure where they got the ‘reluctant’ from …


Comrade Ben is determined that there will be no financial meltdown and no depression while he is in command,” economist Ed Yardeni wrote to clients. “Given the initial reaction [on Wall Street], I suppose this means we are all financial socialists now.”

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Chase mortgage memo pushes ‘Cheats & Tricks’

The bank says it never backed the strategies, which detail how to get an iffy loan approved
Thursday, March 27, 2008


The Oregonian Staff

A newly surfaced memo from banking giant JPMorgan Chase provides a rare glimpse into the mentality that fueled the mortgage crisis.

The memo’s title says it all: “Zippy Cheats & Tricks.”

It is a primer on how to get risky mortgage loans approved by Zippy, Chase’s in-house automated loan underwriting system. The secret to approval? Inflate the borrowers’ income or otherwise falsify their loan application.  … (link)

Sorry, I’m having flashbacks to Henry Blodget and pushing “total crap” onto investors …

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New derivation of equations governing the greenhouse effect reveals “runaway warming” impossibleMiklós Zágoni isn’t just a physicist and environmental researcher. He is also a global warming activist and Hungary’s most outspoken supporter of the Kyoto Protocol. Or was.That was until he learned the details of a new theory of the greenhouse effect, one that not only gave far more accurate climate predictions here on Earth, but Mars too. The theory was developed by another Hungarian scientist, Ferenc Miskolczi, an atmospheric physicist with 30 years of experience and a former researcher with NASA’s Langley Research Center.

After studying it, Zágoni stopped calling global warming a crisis, and has instead focused on presenting the new theory to other climatologists. The data fit extremely well. “I fell in love,” he stated at the International Climate Change Conference this week.

“Runaway greenhouse theories contradict energy balance equations,” Miskolczi states. Just as the theory of relativity sets an upper limit on velocity, his theory sets an upper limit on the greenhouse effect, a limit which prevents it from warming the Earth more than a certain amount.

How did modern researchers make such a mistake? They relied upon equations derived over 80 years ago, equations which left off one term from the final solution.

Miskolczi’s story reads like a book. Looking at a series of differential equations for the greenhouse effect, he noticed the solution — originally done in 1922 by Arthur Milne, but still used by climate researchers today — ignored boundary conditions by assuming an “infinitely thick” atmosphere. Similar assumptions are common when solving differential equations; they simplify the calculations and often result in a result that still very closely matches reality. But not always.

So Miskolczi re-derived the solution, this time using the proper boundary conditions for an atmosphere that is not infinite. His result included a new term, which acts as a negative feedback to counter the positive forcing. At low levels, the new term means a small difference … but as greenhouse gases rise, the negative feedback predominates, forcing values back down.

NASA refused to release the results. Miskolczi believes their motivation is simple. “Money”, he tells DailyTech. Research that contradicts the view of an impending crisis jeopardizes funding, not only for his own atmosphere-monitoring project, but all climate-change research. Currently, funding for climate research tops $5 billion per year.

Miskolczi resigned in protest, stating in his resignation letter, “Unfortunately my working relationship with my NASA supervisors eroded to a level that I am not able to tolerate. My idea of the freedom of science cannot coexist with the recent NASA practice of handling new climate change related scientific results.”

His theory was eventually published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal in his home country of Hungary.

The conclusions are supported by research published in the Journal of Geophysical Research last year from Steven Schwartz of Brookhaven National Labs, who gave statistical evidence that the Earth’s response to carbon dioxide was grossly overstated. It also helps to explain why current global climate models continually predict more warming than actually measured.

The equations also answer thorny problems raised by current theory, which doesn’t explain why “runaway” greenhouse warming hasn’t happened in the Earth’s past. The new theory predicts that greenhouse gas increases should result in small, but very rapid temperature spikes, followed by much longer, slower periods of cooling — exactly what the paleoclimatic record demonstrate.

However, not everyone is convinced. Dr. Stephen Garner, with the NOAA’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL), says such negative feedback effects are “not very plausible”. Reto Ruedy of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies says greenhouse theory is “200 year old science” and doubts the possibility of dramatic changes to the basic theory.

Miskowlczi has used his theory to model not only Earth, but the Martian atmosphere as well, showing what he claims is an extremely good fit with observational results. For now, the data for Venus is too limited for similar analysis, but Miskolczi hopes it will one day be possible.

Common sense 1, pseudoscientific mumbo-jumbo 0.

Climatologists obviously never respected what they could not know. Anyone who tells you that they understand the moving parts of a dynamic system infinitely bigger and more complex than any one human being, well enough to forecast it 50 years into the future, is a liar, an idiot, or a lying idiot. It’s common sense. Climatologists are too overconfident, too hysterical, and too frequently wrong to be credible. Next.

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Quite informative, actually. For example:

“… We estimate that prostitutes are officially arrested only once per 450 tricks, with johns arrested even less frequently. Punishment conditional on arrest is limited – roughly 1 in 10 prostitute arrests leads to a prison sentence, with a mean sentence length of 1.2 years among that group.5 For many johns, perhaps the greatest risk is the stigma that comes with having a mug shot posted on the Chicago Police Department web page. There is a surprisingly high prevalence of police officers demanding sex from prostitutes in return for avoiding arrest. For prostitutes who do not work with pimps (and thus are working the streets), roughly three percent of all their tricks are freebies given to police.”

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