Archive for February 24th, 2007

Hat tip to Antique Guns Newsletter

February 24, 2007

Marine Corps General Reinwald was interviewed on the
>> > radio the other day and you’ll love his reply to the lady who
>> > interviewed him concerning guns and children.
>> >
>> > Regardless of how you feel about gun laws you gotta love
>> > this!!!! This is one of the best comeback lines of all time. It is a
>> > portion of National Public Radio (NPR) interview between a female
>> > broadcaster and US Marine Corps General Reinwald who was about to
>> > sponsor a Boy Scout Troop visiting his military installation.
>> >
>> > FEMALE INTERVIEWER: So, General Reinwald, what things
>> > are you going to teach these young boys when they visit your base?
>> >
>> > GENERAL REINWALD: We’re going to teach them climbing,
>> > canoeing, archery, and shooting.
>> >
>> > FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Shooting! That’s a bit
>> > irresponsible, isn’t it?
>> >
>> > GENERAL REINWALD: I don’t see why, they’ll be properly
>> > supervised on the rifle range.
>> >
>> > FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Don’t you admit that this is a
>> > terribly dangerous activity to be teaching children?
>> >
>> > GENERAL REINWALD: I don’t see how. We will be teaching
>> > them proper rifle discipline before they even touch a firearm.
>> >
>> > FEMALE INTERVIEWER: But you’re equipping them to become
>> > violent killers.
>> >
>> > GENERAL REINWALD: Well, Ma’am, you’re equipped to be a
>> > prostitute, but you’re not one, are you?
>> >
>> > The radio went silent and the interview ended.
>> >
>> > Oooh RAH
What were the 1700’s Like

In George Washington‘s days, there were no cameras.
One’s image was
either sculpted or painted. Some paintings of George
Washington
showed
him standing behind a desk with one arm behind his
back while others
showed both legs and both arms. Prices charged by
painters were not based on how many people were to be
painted, but by how many limbs were to be painted.
Arms and legs are “limbs,” therefore painting them
would cost the buyer more. Hence the _expression,
“Okay, but it’ll cost you an arm and a leg.”
===================================================
As incredible as it sounds, men and women took baths
only twice a
year (May and October)! Women kept their hair covered, while men shaved their heads (because of lice and
bugs) and wore wigs. Wealthy men could afford good
wigs made from wool. They couldn’t wash the wigs, so
to clean them they would carve out a loaf of bread,
put the wig in the shell, and bake it for 30 minutes.
The heat would make the wig big and fluffy, hence the
term “big wig.” Today we often use the term “here
comes the Big Wig” because someone appears to be or is
powerful and wealthy.
====================================================
In the late 1700s, many houses consisted of a large
room with only one
chair. Commonly, a long wide board folded down from
the wall, and was used for dining. The “head of the
household” always sat in the chair while
everyone else ate sitting on the floor Occasionally a
guest, who was
usually a man, would be invited to sit in this chair
during a meal. To
sit in the chair meant you were important and in
charge. They called the
one sitting in the chair the “chair man.” Today in
business, we use the
expression or title “Chairman” or “Chairman of the
Board.”
********************************************************************************
****
Personal hygiene left much room for improvement. As a
result, many women and men had developed acne scars by
adulthood. The women would spread bee’s wax over their
facial skin to smooth out their complexions. When they
were speaking to each other, if a woman began to stare
at another woman’s face she was told, “mind your own
bee’s wax.” Should the woman smile, the wax would
crack, hence the term “crack a smile” In addition,
when they sat too close to the fire, the wax would
melt . . . therefore, the expression “losing face.”

**************************************************************
Ladies wore corsets, which would lace up in the front.
A proper and
dignified woman, as in “straight laced”. . . wore a
tightly tied lace.
**************************************************************
Common entertainment included playing cards. However,
there was a tax
levied when purchasing playing cards but only
applicable to the “Ace of
Spades.” To avoid paying the tax, people would
purchase 51 cards instead. Yet, since most games
require 52 cards, these people were thought to be
stupid or dumb because they weren’t “playing with a
full deck.”

*************************************************************
Early politicians required feedback from the public
to determine what the
people considered important. Since there were no
telephones, TV’s or
radios, the politicians sent their assistants to local
taverns, pubs, and
bars. They were told to “go sip some ale” and listen
to people’s
conversations and political concerns. Many assistants
were dispatched at
different times. “You go sip here” and “You go sip
there.” The two words
“go sip” were eventually combined when referring to
the local opinion and,
thus we have the term “gossip.”

**************************************************************
At local taverns, pubs, and bars, people drank from
pint and quart-sized
containers. A bar maid’s job was to keep an eye on the
customers and keep the drinks coming. She had to pay
close attention and remember who was drinking in
“pints” and who was drinking in “quarts,” hence the
term “minding your “P’s and Q’s.”

**************************************************************
One more: bet you didn’t know this!
In the heyday of sailing ships, all war ships and
many freighters carried
iron cannons. Those cannons fired round iron cannon
balls. It was
necessary to keep a good supply near the cannon.
However, how to prevent them from rolling about the
deck? The best storage method devised was a
square-based pyramid with one ball on top, resting on
four resting on nine, which rested on sixteen. Thus, a
supply of 30 cannon balls could be stacked in a small
area right next to the cannon. There was only one
problem…how to prevent the bottom layer from sliding
or rolling from under the others. The solution was a
metal plate called a “Monkey” with 16 round
indentations.
However, if this plate were made of iron, the iron
balls would quickly
rust to it. The solution to the rusting problem was to
make “Brass
Monkeys.” Few landlubbers realize that brass contracts
much more and much faster than iron when chilled.
Consequently, when the temperature dropped too far,
the brass indentations would shrink so much that the
iron
cannonballs would come right off the monkey. Thus, it
was quite
literally, “Cold enough to freeze the balls off a
brass monkey.” (All
this time, you thought that was an improper
expression, didn’t you?)

Listen to the Whole Story

Mommy… I was at the playground and I saw Daddy’s car go into the
woods with Aunt Jane. I went back to look and he was giving Aunt Jane a
big
kiss. Then he helped her take off her shirt. Then Aunt Jane helped
Daddy take his pants off, then Aunt Jane……..”  At this point Mommy
cut
him off and said, “Johnny, this is such an interesting story, suppose
you
save the rest of it for supper time.  I want to see the look on Daddy’s
Face when you tell it tonight.”!  At the dinner table, Mommy asked
little
Johnny to tell his story.  Johnny started his story, “I was at the
playground and I saw Daddy’s car go into the woods with Aunt Jane. I
went back to look and he was giving Aunt Jane a big kiss, then he helped
her take off her shirt. Then Aunt Jane helped Daddy take his pants off,
then Aunt Jane and Daddy started doing the same thing that Mommy and
Uncle Bill used to do when Daddy was in the Army.”  Moral: Sometimes you
need to listen to the whole story before you interrupt.

HOW TO INSTALL A HOME SECURITY SYSTEM

1. Go to a second-hand store and buy a pair of men’s

well-used and very oversize 14-16 work boots.

2. Place them on your front porch, along with several

crushed empty beer cans, a copy of Guns & Ammo

magazine, some empty .357Magnum shell casings 

….and several NRA magazines.

3. Put a few giant dog dishes next to the boots and magazine.

4. Leave a note on your door that reads:

Hey Bubba, Big Jim, Duke and Slim,

     I went to the gun shop for more ammunition. Back in an hour.

Don’t mess with the pit bulls — they attacked the mailman this

morning and messed him up REAL bad. I don’t think Killer took

part in it ….but it was hard to tell from all the blood.
PS – I locked all four of ’em in the house. Better just wait outside.

Al Gore

February 24, 2007

Global Warming: Fact, Fiction and Political Endgame

Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Albert Arnold Gore, will be the toast of Hollywood at this weekend’s self-congratulatory soiree known as the Academy Awards.

Gore, whose failure to carry his “home” state of Tennessee cost him the 2000 presidential election, has recast himself as the populist pope of eco-theology and the titular head of the green movement’s developmentally arrested legions.

The doughy darling of Leftcoast glitterati has received two Oscar nominations for a junk-science production called “An Inconvenient Truth,” a pseudo-documentary born of the wildly improbable pop film “The Day After Tomorrow.” Gore’s “Truth,” however, is even stranger than the Hollywood fiction that inspired it.

The celebration of Gore’s film coincides, not coincidentally, with the much-ballyhooed release of a media summary of a report on global warming by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. These two events will serve as a fine backdrop for the coming cavalcade of dire ecological predictions by Gore and his ilk. Their goal will be to saturate the all-too-sympathetic media outlets with apocalyptic hysterics about a man-made global disaster. Perhaps, too, if all goes according to plan, we’ll see another Gore presidential run.

All the “Live Earth” road-show talking points will play up an alarming assertion from Bill Clinton’s former veep: “Never before has all of civilization been threatened. We have everything we need to save it, with the possible exception of political will. But political will is a renewable resource.”

To be sure, there is “no controlling legal authority” for this, the biggest political and economic power grab ever attempted. The Left’s desire to hamstring the U.S. economy and force worldwide Kyoto Treaty compliance will, according to one United Nations estimate, cost the world economy $553 trillion this century.

Al Gore may be a comical dupe when it comes to climatology (in college, he collected a C+ and a D in his two natural-sciences courses), but the global-warming debate and the consequences of that debate are serious. To participate meaningfully, one must distinguish between fact and fiction – in addition to understanding the underlying political agendas.

In the inimitable words of the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY), “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” To that end, Al Gore’s “facts” are deserving of rigorous scrutiny.

Separating fact from fiction

First, let’s be clear that the current debate about climate focuses on “global warming,” which is not synonymous with the debate about the environmental consequences of the “greenhouse effect.” The latter issue concerns what, if any, relationship exists between man-made CO2 in the atmosphere and global temperatures.

For the record, most reputable scientists agree that we are in a period of gradual global warming (about 0.7 degrees Celsius in the last century), and that the greenhouse effect prevents our climate from becoming a deep freeze. Most also agree that the level of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased in the last century, and there is a growing consensus that global warming is due, in part, to the greenhouse effect.

However, there is no scientifically established correlation between global-warming trends and acceleration of the greenhouse effect due to human production of CO2—only broad speculation. Although many politicians and their media shills insist that the primary cause of global warming is the burning of hydrocarbons here in the United States, that government regulation of man-made CO2 will curb this global warming, that our failure to limit CO2 output will have dire consequences, and that the costs of enacting these limitations far outweigh the potential consequences, there is no evidence supporting any of these assertions.

Nigel Calder, former editor of New Scientist, notes, “When politicians and journalists declare that the science of global warming is settled, they show a regrettable ignorance about how science works.”

In fact, there remains substantial doubt that the production of CO2 by human enterprise, which contributes only about three percent of CO2 to the natural carbon cycle (the biogeochemical cycle by which carbon is exchanged between the biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere of the Earth) has any real impact on global temperature, and if it does, that such impact is, necessarily, negative.

Atmospheric CO2 levels have increased from about 315 parts per million five decades ago, to about 380 ppm today, which is to say, there are major factors influencing the amount of CO2 levels in the atmosphere besides our burning of hydrocarbons.

Case in point: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii has maintained the world’s longest continuous worldwide record of atmospheric carbon-dioxide levels—those cited by global-warming alarmists. In 2002 and 2003, NOAA recorded increases in atmospheric CO2 of 2.43 and 2.30 ppm respectively—a 55 percent increase over the annual average of 1.5 ppm for previous years. In 2004, however, this increase fell back to 1.5 ppm per year.

Did human industrial output somehow increase 55 percent during those two years, and then decline by that amount in 2004? Of course not. For the record, NOAA concluded that the fluctuation was caused by the natural processes that contribute and remove CO2 from the atmosphere.

Al Gore would be hard-pressed to explain NOAA’s findings within the context of his apocalyptic thesis, and he would be hard-pressed to convince any serious scientists that his Orwellian solutions could correct such fluctuations. This is because his thesis is based largely on convenient half-truths.

For instance, Gore insists that the increased incidence of hurricanes, tornadoes, drought and other weather phenomena is the direct result of global warming.

Renowned meteorologist Dr. William Gray takes exception: “The degree to which you believe global warming is causing major hurricanes,” he says, “is inversely proportional to your knowledge about these storms.”

In a recent issue of Discover Magazine, Gray, described by Discover’s editors as one of “the world’s most famous hurricane experts,” wrote, “This human-induced global-warming thing… is grossly exaggerated… I’m not disputing there has been global warming. There was a lot of global warming in the 1930s and ‘40s, and then there was global cooling in the middle ‘40s to the early ‘70s. Nearly all of my colleagues who have been around 40 or 50 years are skeptical… about this global-warming thing. But no one asks us.”

Gore preaches about the two percent of Antarctica that is warming without noting that temperature readings over the rest of Antarctica indicate the continent has cooled over the previous 35 years, or that the UN’s climate panel estimates net snow mass increases in Antarctica this century. Gore notes the increasing temperatures and shrinking ice caps in the Northern Hemisphere but does not note the decreasing temperatures and increased sea ice in the Southern Hemisphere.

Richard S. Lindzen, Professor of Atmospheric Science at MIT, writes, “A general characteristic of Mr. Gore’s approach is to assiduously ignore the fact that the earth and its climate are dynamic; they are always changing even without any external forcing. To treat all change as something to fear is bad enough; to do so in order to exploit that fear is much worse.”

Perhaps worse still is Gore’s intellectual cowardice. During his visit to Europe in January, Gore agreed to an interview with Denmark’s largest national newspaper, Jyllands-Posten. Then, when he learned that Bjorn Lomborg, one of the world’s leading critics of eco-theological dogma, was also going to be interviewed, Gore abruptly canceled.

Lomborg, a statistician, has delved deep into the data to expose the environmental movement’s selective and oft-misleading use of evidence. His book, “The Skeptical Environmentalist” was hailed by Washington Post Book World as “a magnificent achievement” and “the most significant work on the environment since the appearance of its polar opposite, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, in 1962.” Perhaps a thoughtful debate is what scares Al Gore most of all.

Dr. Roy Spencer, former senior scientist for climate studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, has some additional “Questions for Al Gore” based on what he calls “Gore’s Inconvenient Truth.” We are still awaiting Gore’s reply…

Alternative causes for global warming

Beyond the natural carbon cycle and greenhouse warming, there are some other serious causal explanations for global warming.

Among the suspects are, of all things, the sun and its fellow stars. A venerable scientific journal, Proceedings of the Royal Society, published recent research done at the Danish National Space Center indicating that the impact of cosmic rays on the climate could be much greater than scientists estimated. The researchers put forth evidence that cosmic rays have a lot to do with cloud formation in the atmosphere, which in turn has a lot to do with shielding us from the sun’s warmth. Combining this discovery with evidence that our local star is experiencing historically high levels of solar activity, the researchers suggest that our sun is batting away cosmic rays from elsewhere in the galaxy and thus reducing our planet’s cloud cover. Imagine that: The sun is affecting our planet’s temperature.

Nigel Calder provides another angle on this thesis: “After becoming much more active during the 20th century, the sun now stands at a high but roughly level state of activity. Solar physicists warn of possible global cooling, should the sun revert to the lazier mood it was in during the Little Ice Age 300 years ago. Climate history and related archeology give solid support to the solar hypothesis.”

Research concerning cosmic radiation as a factor in global warming builds on earlier comprehensive research done a decade ago by the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine’s Arthur Robinson, whose research soundly refutes Gore’s thesis that global warming is human-induced, noting the relationship between the solar magnetic cycle and global temperatures over the last 250 years.

In 1997, Dr. Frederick Seitz, past president of the National Academy of Sciences, invited colleagues to sign a petition based on Robinson’s work, which received more than 20,000 signers, most of whom hold advanced degrees in relevant fields of study. That petition stated, in part: “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

Some other global-warming factors being seriously considered scientifically include ocean currents, changing jet-stream patterns and the Earth’s mantle activities affecting ocean temperatures.

The Political Endgame

During the second term of the Clinton/Gore administration, the U.S. faced international pressure to become a signatory to the Kyoto Treaty. The Senate, however, passed a resolution rejecting approval of that treaty in an eye-popping show of bipartisanship. The vote was 95-0, and 56 of those senators are still in Congress.

That 1997 Byrd-Hagel Senate resolution objected to the lack of any “specific scheduled commitments” in regard to the CO2 output of 129 “developing” countries, most notably, China and India, the second and fourth most powerful economies in the world.

China, home to 1.3 billion people, will have the largest economy on earth in little more than a decade. Currently, the country accounts for 33 percent of the world’s steel production and 50 percent of all concrete. China burns 2,500 tons of coal and 210,000 gallons of crude per minute. It consumes 24,000,000 watts of energy each minute, most of it produced by coal-fueled generating plants. Every ten days, China fires up a new coal generator, with plans for 2,200 additional plants by 2030. At current growth rates of consumption, China alone will devour all the earth’s resources in three decades and generate a whole lot of CO2 in the process.

Yet European industrial nations and developing nations on other continents would like to see the U.S. economy restrained by the Kyoto Treaty.

Clearly, some U.S. politicians understand the implications of Gore’s folly. Don’t expect that to stop Democrats from milking every last drop of political capital from this debate. Talk of carbon credits and other nonsense is really all about campaign coffers—holding out the threat of regulation as a means of financing campaigns and perpetuating office tenures.

University of Colorado climate scientist Roger Pielke fantasizes about a Gore victory in ‘08 based on swing states with lower-than-average CO2 output: “[I]n 2004 the per-state carbon-dioxide emissions in states that voted for George Bush were about twice as large on a per-capita basis than those in states that voted for John Kerry. If climate change is a major issue in 2008 then there is a decided advantage in [important swing] states to the Democrats. Colorado and Nevada are below the national average for carbon-dioxide emissions, and Ohio and Iowa stand to benefit immensely from an ethanol bidding war.”

However, Gore’s political and economic agenda runs deeper than environmental concerns. In his recent book, The Politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming and Environmentalism, Christopher Horner, Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, aptly describes Gore and his ilk as “green on the outside, red to the core,” noting that they are motivated by an anti-capitalist agenda.

Conclusions

Regarding the prevailing winds of contemporary science, my colleague Thomas Sowell reminds us, “Back in the 1970s, the hysteria was about global cooling and the prospect of a new ice age.” I published a collection of those dire predictions in an essay entitled, “The Day After Tomorrow.”

Al Gore’s current hysterics should be received with much more skepticism than the last round of climate soothsayers. A lethal dose of his eco-elixir is precisely the wrong prescription, as it is full of the Left’s archetypal defeatist, retreatist statism but void of regard for real-world economic consequences.

Gore’s flawed analysis notwithstanding, however, sea level has risen, by best estimates, between four and eight inches in the last 150 years.

The annual rate of rise has remained relatively stable since the “big thaw” ended some 6,000 years ago. However, if current temperature trends continue, an increased rate of rise could pose significant challenges to nations around the world as millions of people now live only a few feet higher than current tides.

Although Gore, et al., would insist otherwise, we mere mortals are no match for the age-old forces that heat and cool our planet. Yet, in the face of enormous odds, we Americans have a history of perseverance and success. We can improvise, adapt and overcome—just as we have for hundreds of years in response to catastrophe. Unbridled innovation and ingenuity have served us well throughout our history, and these tools will take us, and the rest of the world, far into the future—unless shackled by a subterfuge like the Kyoto Protocol.

Publisher’s Note: This is an urgent request—please sign our petition to “Stop Albert Gore and Reject the UN’s Global Warming Treaty.” Gore is re-energizing the movement advocating Kyoto compliance—the biggest UN power-grab in our nation’s history. I urge you to sign this petition now. We already have over 30,000 electronic signatures. We want to deliver 100,000 signatures to the Senate by the time Al Gore reaches the podium at this Sunday’s Academy Awards.

It takes just 20 seconds to sign online. Link to—http://PatriotPetitions.US/StopGore

Thank you! Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!

Mark Alexander

Quote of the week

“Too often environmental-policy discussions assume that the only way to advance environmental values is to create a government program or adopt new regulations. The potential for private initiative to conserve environmental treasures is overlooked. Yet where private action is viable, it is often superior to government efforts.” —Case Western Law Professor Jonathan Adler

Open query

“Was life better when a sheet of ice a mile thick covered Chicago? Was it worse when Greenland was so warm that Vikings farmed there?” —George Will


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