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Month: January 2009

Number 58

Number 58 31 January 2009 Winners Can’t Always Be Choosers; Like Everybody Else, They Have To Fit In Amateur hour in the White House: he tells the GOP not to listen to a particular radio show; reminds us, “I won;” scolds a reporter for asking a substantial question at an inconvenient time; petulantly hangs on to his risky mobile phone; and gives his first interview as president to — ye gods — an Arab TV network (and makes a mess of it). That’s change, all right. A breath of fresh air, or hints of a Carter-like presidency? Too early to tell, because he may get a feel for the job, but so far it appears that he’s trying to get his community organized. That’s not the same as setting up your team and establishing your bona fides. The Iranian Fanatics Will Never Play Nice Begin with the basic story, which describes the US Navy’s interception of an Iranian merchant vessel carrying munitions. Then, if you are not too fussy about where you get your news, move on to this Mossad-sourced story, parts of which may be true. Note that experience with the second source — a website called “Debka” — led the Terrapin Gazette to stop linking to stories reported there. The site is simply not reliable. It’s A Hoax, It’s A Power Grab, It’s An Insult To The...

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Number 57

We Are Lucky This Idiot Was Not Named Secretary Of State There’s been a little buzz over what Secretary of Labor Robert Reich said the other day. His remarks sound racist, unless you put them into the context of affirmative action and political correctness — which is a debatable dodge. A critic’s view: Let’s leave aside the question of whether he is right about that that and consider how he thinks the government’s (i.e., your) money ought to be spent. “I am concerned,” he said on C-SPAN, “. . . that these jobs not simply go to high skilled people who are already professional or to white male construction workers.” Here’s a little experiment thought (he means “thought experiment” — Ed.): what if Mr. Reich had said “I am concerned that these jobs not go to black male construction workers”? What then? Well, racial hatred and bitterness, then. And a very nasty turn in the nature of the culture war, that’s what. Why couldn’t this moron have simply said, “We need to know that our money is being allocated fairly and according to existing guidelines, of course”? (Answer: because he’s a moron.) Shut the hell up, Reich. You’re so maladroit you’re dangerous. Just shut the hell up and stay shut up. This Is Nothing To Take Lightly, But Everyone Seems To Disagree Don’t go on the internet with Microsoft...

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Number 56

There Is An Answer The current economic crisis has a beginning that we know — it is found in the misbehavior of Rep. Frank and Sen. Dodd. Their ideological preachments made them incompetent, and opened the door to the insatiable greed of people like Jamie Gorlick (see PenPo Number 52). We also know what not to do, because we have tons of records of the events of the late 1930s. As for example: By 1939 Roosevelt’s own Treasury secretary, Henry Morgenthau, had realized that the New Deal economic policies had failed. “We have tried spending money,” Morgenthau wrote in his diary. “We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. . . . After eight years of this Administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started. . . . And an enormous debt to boot!” Read the rest of it, and you will see that deflation is the enemy. When the depression began in Europe, gold flowed into the USA from the collapsing banks overseas. The USA made the terrible mistake of not issuing currency based (to some percentage) on that gold. There was literally not enough money in the nation to conduct business. In fact, the bankers and industrialists and most politicians so feared inflation (probably because of the German experience in the 1920s) that they prevented the measures...

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Number 55

Number 55 17 January 2009 What Does This Man Actually Believe?? In chronological order: From a “wingnut” radio show that played a recording of an Obama quote in January, 2007: OBAMA: We cannot impose a military solution on what has effectively become a civil war. And until we acknowledge that reality, uh, we can send 15,000 more troops; 20,000 more troops; 30,000 more troops. Uh, I don’t know any, uh, expert on the region or any military officer that I’ve spoken to, uh, privately that believes that that is gonna make a substantial difference on the situation on the ground. NPR news, Obama speaking in July, 2007: Here’s what we know. The surge has not worked. And they said today, ‘Well, even in September, we’re going to need more time.’ So we’re going to kick this can all the way down to the next president, under the president’s plan. Speaking in a debate on July 5, 2008, Obama said: I had no doubt, and I said when I opposed the surge, that given how wonderfully our troops perform, if we place 30,000 more troops in there, then we would see an improvement in the security situation and we would see a reduction in the violence. From the Washington Post, January 12, 2009: President-elect Barack Obama intends to sign off on Pentagon plans to send up to 30,000 more U.S....

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Number 54

How We Know It’s A Tissue Of Lies The accomplishment of which the staff of The Penguin Post is most proud is the systematic debunking of the lies and hoaxes behind the concept of anthropogenic global warming (AGW). In a serious attempt to guide the reader through a thicket of information and provide a clear vision of reality, this newsletter worked hard to assemble and elucidate the facts. For a time, AGW was the subject of a dispute without rancor or charges of deceit. Back when the science was unable to provide a close look at the data, it appeared that atmospheric carbon dioxide levels might be the cause of temperature change. Eventually it became possible to look very closely at the evidence and determine that rises in CO2 always followed temperature increases by several hundred years. The scale of observation, in other words, had changed. When the horizontal axis of the graph (which represented time) was imprecisely calibrated, thousands of years were compressed into a tiny linear space — and the temperature and CO2 squiggles on the graph overlapped. Then, due to advances in technology, it became possible to look very closely at that horizontal line, and divide it up into segments of less than a century. When that happened, the squiggles could be seen not to overlap. For the first time it was obvious that CO2 levels...

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