"History is a wonderful thing, if only it was true"

Sunday, August 31, 2008


Reported on Meet the Press
McCain's nominated VP, Sarah Palin, sports the following bumper sticker:

Friday, August 29, 2008

Sad passing

One of the great drivers passes

Phil Hill, a Racing Legend at Odds With the Sport at Times, Is Dead at 81
... a reserved Californian who became a gifted race-car driver and the only U.S.-born driver to win the Formula One international auto-racing championship, died Thursday. He was 81.

Hill died at Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula of complications from Parkinson's disease, said John Lamm, a close friend who is also editor-at-large of Road & Track magazine.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


One reason that Wind will take a while to become useful for power

The Energy Challenge - Wind Energy Bumps Into Power Grid’s Limits - Series - NYTimes.com:

 "The dirty secret of clean energy is that while generating it is getting easier, moving it to market is not."

The power grid can't handle the loads

Aw Shucks

Frankly, I was amazed that this stuff sold
Well, maybe I shouldn't have been amazed ... people will buy anything, esp. if it makes them "sexy"

August 27, 2008, 3:43 pm Fraudulent Male Enhancement Drug Gets Company Founder 25 Yrs. Posted by Dan Slater In Cincinnati, the marketing of a male sexual enhancement product called Enzyte, which reportedly used ads featuring “Smiling Bob,” a happy man with an exaggerated smile (pictured), has led to a whopping jail sentence for the founder of Berkeley Premium Nutraceuticals.

Today, U.S. District Judge S. Arthur Spiegel sentenced Steve Warshak to 25 years in prison after he was convicted in February on 93 counts of conspiracy, fraud and money laundering. (WorldCom’s Bernie Ebbers got 25 years, while Enron’s Jeff Skilling got 24 years and four months.) Here’s the AP story.

Federal prosecutors accused the company of bilking customers out of $100 million through a series of deceptive ads, manipulated credit card transactions and refusal to accept returns or cancel orders. Judge Spiegel ordered the company, along with other defendants, to forfeit more than $500 million — a figure based on how much Warshak and the company took in.

“This is a case about greed,” Spiegel reportedly said as he reviewed the case. “Steven Warshak preyed on perceived sexual inadequacies of customers.” Spiegel said one aspect of the fraud relied on the reluctance of customers to come forward, which would mean admitting they ordered the sexual enhancement pills.
“I do feel deep remorse and would like to apologize to any customer who ever had a bad experience with my company,” Warshak said. “I apologize to all the great people, the employees of Berkeley — they’ve given their heart and soul. I let them down.”

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Twice today

Home to Sutton's Bay (Courthouse) twice today
Early AM to Brownfield meeting, then home, quick check email/phones, the back for Grand Vision meeting
Clear skies, wonderful day to be out, too bad so many hours indoors.

Oh yeah - our Honda S2000
Traffic very light

M-22 (Michigan highway) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "The road itself comprises numerous turns and hills, making it a moderately popular drive for tourists visiting the area, especially during autumn. The road, which closely follows Lake Michigan, is often referred to as the Midwestern version of the Pacific Coast Highway (California State Route 1), as it possesses the only other western exposure, large scale sandy shoreline in the United States besides the Pacific Ocean. Similar to SR 1 there are many turn-outs, beach towns, lighthouses, overlooks, and close proximity to the water."

Monday, August 25, 2008

Your Money - Gauging the Worth of a Frequent-Flier Credit Card - NYTimes.com

Just a bookmark of piece on weighing frequent flying programs, worth less every year.

Gauging the Worth of a Frequent-Flier Credit Card - NYTimes.com

We tend to do the buy coach, do the upgrade.
But considering other options.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Long time reader of Forbes, regardless of the politics underlying the publication.
I usually find a few interesting ideas in the publication, sort of "People magazine of business"

I find myself trying to flip to the back of the magazine for some nuggets.
Such as the following.

Thoughts - Forbes.com:

Very few people do anything creative
after the age of 35. The reason is that
very few people do anything creative
before the age of 35.

--Joel Hildebrand

What I cannot create I do not understand.

--Richard Feynman

I leave out the parts that people skip.


Composers shouldn't think too much--
it interferes with their plagiarism.

--Howard Dietz

Creative minds have been known
to survive any kind of bad training.

--Anna Freud

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Yet more hybrid bashing from yours truely

Sierra Club ... clubs the baby seal

The Green Life: Hybrid Vehicles: Silent Dangers?:

"Those lovable, fuel-saving hybrids might not be so angelic after all. Turns out hybrids could be . . . too quiet."

Then we have The Economist on IC engines
Car engines | The old motor roars back

"By putting all these technologies together, small cars capable of breaking the 100mpg barrier will become possible. Getting more than 80mpg from some small diesel-powered cars is already feasible—with a very light foot on the accelerator. Indeed, according to Edmunds.com, an automotive-information service, when you count the overall costs of owning a car, only one hybrid in America, the Honda Civic Hybrid, gets into the top ten of the least expensive vehicles to run, with fuel prices at $5 a gallon. It may be old hat, but the internal combustion engine still has a lot of mileage in it."

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Sour Cherries, Without the Crust - Bitten - Dining & Wine - New York Times Blog

Mark Bitten touts Earthy

Sour Cherries, Without the Crust - Bitten - Dining & Wine - New York Times Blog:

"Earthy is a very good food site for a few specific things; unless I’m planning a trip to Europe I buy dried porcini here also. So, having ordered a few things and figuring I might as well find some more, since I was already going to pay shipping charges, I asked David Eger, who runs the site, what he might have that I couldn’t resist. And he suggested sour Balaton cherries, a Hungarian variety first grown in the United States by Michigan State University and now established in Michigan"

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


I expect to be pretty much off line for next couple of weeks
Family visits - which trump blogging any day

Simply excellent post

Tom summing his thesis in critique of a piece by David Brooks.

Bottom line - we (the American model of a market society, both goods and ideas) is winning.

Some truly bad thinking from Brooks (Thomas P.M. Barnett :: Weblog):

"We should not confuse a post-Caucasian world with a post-American one. The former is inevitable and good. It comes with the territory of creating a global middle class. The latter simply will not ever happen. Our global rule set is not only winning, it's sweeping the planet. That the political reality trails ('They're not democracies yet! All is lost!!') our vast economic success troubles only the impatient and truly non-strategic thinkers among us, as well as those who consistently doubt America's purpose and strength as the world's oldest and most successful multinational economic, political and security union."

Monday, August 04, 2008

Not so fast ...

Well, first we had Santa's Workshop flooding

North Pole May Be Ice-Free for First Time This Summer:
"Arctic warming has become so dramatic that the North Pole may melt this summer, report scientists studying the effects of climate change in the field.

'We're actually projecting this year that the North Pole may be free of ice for the first time [in history],' David Barber, of the University of Manitoba, told National Geographic News aboard the C.C.G.S. Amundsen, a Canadian research icebreaker."

But now maybe not:
Arctic Sea Ice News & Analysis:

"The Arctic sea ice is now at the peak of the melt season. Although ice extent is below average, it seems less likely that extent will approach last year’s record low.

The pace of summer decline is slower than last year’s record-shattering rate, and peak sunlight has passed with the summer solstice. However, at least six weeks of melt are left in the season and much of the remaining ice is thin and vulnerable to rapid loss. A race has developed between the waning sunlight and the weakened ice."

Just goes to show that predictions are imperfect