JS-Kit/Echo comments for article at http://smallestminority.blogspot.com/2008/11/obama-plans-to-hit-ground-running-it.html (32 comments)

  Tentative mapping of comments to original article, corrections solicited.

jsid-1226370648-598982  Unix-Jedi at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 02:30:48 +0000

In all fairness, this sounds exactly like Clinton in '92.

And Clinton had executive experience. (2 stints as governor, interspersed with losing an election - also something Obama's never been forced to deal with (other than every primary in the latter half of the run), and AR AG.)

And he ran slap damn into the wall, even with a Democrat-controlled Congress.

jsid-1226379978-598985  RC at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 05:06:18 +0000

This is why Utah hates Democrats.
Clinton created the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, thereby banning exploitation of 1.9 million acres of Utah desert and leaving potentially billions of dollars of oil, natural gas, and minerals (including uranium, silver, and copper) in otherwise useless land. He didn't even have the balls to declare it a monument while in Utah; he made the announcement from the Arizonan side of the border.

Now, Obama is looking to do the same thing, despite never having stepped foot in this state.

I hate how Utah becomes the whipping boy for every Democratic politician that gets into office. They know the state is going to go Republican regardless of what they do. As a result, Democrats do harmful things to the state to curry favor with their special interest groups, particularly the environmental ones.

jsid-1226387245-598986  Russell at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 07:07:25 +0000

"Sensitive, fragile lands" my white, conservative behind!

I live in the Salt Lake valley and have been a few times over in the general area tapped to be, uh, tapped. Nothing but sagebrush, tumbleweeds and a few small towns here and there.

The entire oil industry could plop down there and not be noticed by anything but the environmental nuts.

President-Elect Obama is a socialist. Or Democrat. Can't tell the difference these days.

Those damn Republicans better grow a pair, ASAP.

jsid-1226393172-598988  Saladman at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 08:46:12 +0000

The relevant comparison is not Obama to Clinton, but the 111th Congress to the 103rd. The Democrats of the 103rd, while in control, had to accomodate some fiscally responsible and politically moderate members of their own party. Pelosi and Reid are hard left in their own ways, have fewer moderates to appease, and appear to be in firmer control of their own caucuses.

I'm not worried about Obama's personal ability to move Congress to the left. I'm worried that Obama is a leftist whose path of least resistance with Congress will be to the left. The Dems seem to have a broad agreement on agenda and have declared their intention to hit the ground running.

Further, they must know the White House and both houses of Congress may only last two years, but at this point they have as much or more to gain by solidifying their policies and buying votes with welfare, amnesty and demagogery as they would by governing as moderates.

But I always have been a pessimist; hopefully I'll be proven wrong.

jsid-1226411985-598993  pops1911 at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 13:59:45 +0000

I just hope he hits the ground - in a heap not running!

jsid-1226414825-598996  A Texan at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 14:47:05 +0000

"I'm not worried about Obama's personal ability to move Congress to the left. I'm worried that Obama is a leftist whose path of least resistance with Congress will be to the left. The Dems seem to have a broad agreement on agenda and have declared their intention to hit the ground running."

What concerns me is this, plus the appointment of Rahm Emanuel as O's Chief of Staff. That guy is an enforcer - harder on his own kind than the enemy. This suggests that O is planning to cram a lot of otherwise unacceptable legislation down our throats with no Republican support - and to threaten Dems if necessary to get what he wants.

Such a uniter, such a healer. Such a sack of ....

jsid-1226422355-599000  juris_imprudent at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 16:52:35 +0000

This suggests that O is planning to cram a lot of otherwise unacceptable legislation down our throats with no Republican support - and to threaten Dems if necessary to get what he wants.

Which of course would be the best thing that could happen to the Repubs - your spine tends to stiffen when you are pushed back up against a wall. If Obama and the Congressional Dems don't scare enough people in the first two years, that's when I know to worry.

jsid-1226424107-599002  DJ at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 17:21:47 +0000

This ought to raise the hair on the back of your neck. The money quote:

"President Obama is prepared to, uh, really take power and begin to rule day one."

Presidents manage and lead, but they don't rule.

jsid-1226428418-599003  Matthew Avitabile at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 18:33:38 +0000

What is he thinking?

Would you be interested in a reciprocal link?

jsid-1226429863-599005  DJ at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 18:57:43 +0000

"What is he thinking?"

The miserable fool believes his own rhetoric.

jsid-1226442952-599019  Markadelphia at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 22:35:52 +0000

Stem Cell research enjoys broad bi partisan support so I don't quite understand why this is being touted as a leftist agenda.

"Soon, it was hoped, it would be drill, baby, drill."

This has to be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. Essentially, it's akin to a person in 1988 shouting at the top his idiotic lungs that people should embrace the typewriter.

jsid-1226445369-599022  Yosemite Sam at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 23:16:09 +0000

I guess I'll be laughing my ass off when you are freezing in the dark during a cold Minnesota winter and there is no oil to keep you warm.

jsid-1226446217-599024  DirtCrashr at Tue, 11 Nov 2008 23:30:17 +0000

"Stem-cell research enjoys broad bipartisan support" - trick answer, only half a point awarded: That is it's a generalized answer inclusive of all kinds of stem-cell research especially including adult-stem cell research, but not necessarily including *embryonic* stem-cell research which has been proven over the recent interval largely unnecessary and even unproductive but became a partisan issue among the Academic Left and its Frankenstein gamesmanship and institution-building who screamed like babies when funding was denied.

jsid-1226450058-599028  Unix-Jedi at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 00:34:18 +0000

Stem cell research wasn't stopped during Bush, Mark.

Just more lies from you, Mark.

So far, fetal stem cell research isn't showing the promise other lines of inquiry are.

But for you to understand that, you would have to understand logic, how theory works, and the scientific method. Since you've demonstrated many times that you don't...

jsid-1226467744-599044  Ed "What the" Heckman at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 05:29:04 +0000

"it's akin to a person in 1988 shouting at the top his idiotic lungs that people should embrace the typewriter."

Wow, that analogy was so bad I just had to do a double-take. So I thought, let's test the validity of his analogy.

First, we have typewriters and… oil? One is hardware, and one is a supply. Wait, that doesn't match! Oil and typewriter ribbons, maybe?

Okay, maybe it's the year when typewriters became obsolete. So let's see, the Macintosh had been shipping for 4 years. Microsoft was still shipping DOS and users were ignoring the horrible Windows 2. Windows 3 was still 2 years in the future. Computers were rare, hard to use, and the only people who used word processing were professional typists, hobbyists, and Mac owners who had Microsoft Word 3.01. (The few, the rich, plus a few geeks like me lucky enough to work in a computer store.) So when most people (90%+) needed to write something, they reached for their trusty old typewriter.

BTW… Typewriters are still in use today in situations which a computer does not do well in, though designers are gradually figuring out those special circumstances. For example, addressing envelopes and filling out multi-part forms. For example, the last time I got a money order at my bank, they used a typewriter to fill part of it out.

So if we compare cars to typewriters, where do we stand compared to 1988? We have hybrids which still use oil, just more efficiently. We have electrics which are expensive, require expensive battery replacements periodically, are limited in range, and require hours to charge, making them unusable as a flexible "only" car. We have propane and natural gas vehicles that can only be used by fleets with their own service centers. And we have hydrogen fueled vehicles which are still strictly experimental.

So in 1988 we already had word processors out in the marketplace being used only by early adopters. But what viable alternatives are out in the market now for cars? Hybrids are better than pure gas engine vehicles, but they're not an actual sea change in technology, more like typewriter based word processors. Pure electrics are never going to be viable in the foreseeable future. (Battery materials are highly toxic and cannot be recharged in 5 minutes. Petroleum based engines have no such limitations.) Propane and natural gas cars are better, but their long term future isn't nearly as bright as hydrogen based cars. To me they seem to be the computer equivalent of dedicated word processing terminals, a dead end technology.

That leaves hydrogen based fuel cell vehicles. These are the most promising, but not even early adopters can buy them yet.

So how do these two timelines compare?

Word processing typewriters were introduced in 1971. Dedicated terminals were introduced in roughly 1973. General purpose computers with word processors didn't really appear until 1977. Small computers with word processors didn't really start appearing in offices until 1980 or 1981 after IBM shipped the first PC. Even then, most users also had a typewriter. As time passed companies gradually moved to having just one typewriter per office by about 1995. Most home users also had a typewriter until roughly 1995 too, when computers started being generally able to do things that used to require a typewriter.

Okay, so where are we in replacing gas engines? I consider hybrids the equivalent of typewriter based word processors, electrics the equivalent of dedicated word processing terminals, and fuel cell vehicles the equivalent of modern word processors. That puts us at about the same point where computers were in 1975 or 1976; only automotive development timelines tend to be much longer than computers. At that point only hobbyists and corporate development teams were working on computers, but they were not available as a complete product which early adopters could buy.

So by Marky's analogy, typewriters are equivalent to petroleum cars. That means that typewriter ribbons are equivalent to oil.

So tell me again, Marky, how would everyone have benefitted from ceasing the production of typewriter ribbons in 1975, when everyone and their mother needed them for everyday work and no viable replacement would be available for another 20 years?

Every single person here is looking forward to the Next Big Thing which will replace the current petroleum fueled engine. But even when that replacement comes onto the market, it will still take years, and most likely 2 to 3 decades before that alternative will surpass gas and diesel as a primary fuel.

The simple fact of the problem is this, Marky: WE NEED OIL NOW! AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO NEED IT UNTIL WE CAN REPLACE IT WITH SOMETHING BETTER! REFUSING to accept that simple fact and refusing to allow domestic drilling leaves us vulnerable to foreign manipulation of a resource we cannot do without! If foreign countries were to refuse to sell us oil and we did not have our own sources available because we refused to development, the resulting shortages would almost certainly destroy our economy!

Is that really what you want, Marky?

jsid-1226493145-599052  Jay.Mac at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 12:32:25 +0000

The report I read on this story noted that the Obama team was also coordinating with "liberal advocacy groups" to identify "ideologically offensive" items for Obama to alter.


Sure sounds like he's going to govern from the centre, doesn't it?

jsid-1226502041-599058  DJ at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 15:00:41 +0000

Ed, it's an engineering problem, one that involves resources, supply, demand, mathematics, planning, and so on, and so on, and so on. Do you expect a fundamentally dishonest teacher who can't reason from facts to conclusions to understand it?

jsid-1226506215-599061  Ed "What the" Heckman at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 16:10:15 +0000


Not really. After all, he lies to the one person you should never lie to: himself.

OTOH, it was fun taking his analogy apart, seeing how it works, checking it against facts and putting it back together in a way which does work. It was a reengineering project! ;-)

I should point out one other thing about this analogy. Even though typewriters are now largely obsolete, typewriter ribbon technology was used in printers, and as such, they're still in wide use today. Likewise, even once we've made gas and diesel cars obsolete, we'll still need petroleum for technologies such as plastics, lubricants, and so forth. I doubt we'll ever be able to stop drilling completely.

jsid-1226522254-599083  DirtCrashr at Wed, 12 Nov 2008 20:37:34 +0000

To the arrogant and elitist Obama Team we look like a social-engineering problem - not people.

jsid-1226537318-599097  DJ at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 00:48:38 +0000

Ed, I want to see an electric airplane, and no, I don't mean just a model. The Air Force tried nuclear and said, more or less, "Um, no, we'll pass (cough, cough)."

jsid-1226549448-599107  Unix-Jedi at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 04:10:48 +0000



And they had a MCR-2S running off fuel cells a while back... but I'm not finding the articles..

Not that it detracts from your point.

What Mark and his ilk don't understand is before a single dollar was spent on the Manhattan Project, it was Known It Would Work. Well, mostly. It wasn't something that was impossible.
Now, getting there was going to be hard and expensive and require inventing some technologies, but the theory quite simply said "Put this much U-235 together in this much time, or PU-238.."
Now, getting that much U-235 or Pu-238 was the problem.

But that's what the money was spent on. (And actually more was spent building the next generation of bomber to carry it - the B-29's development doubled the cost of the project).

Simply tossing money wildly at "research" (and especially ideologically driven "research" looking for miracles will never work.

jsid-1226549611-599108  Unix-Jedi at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 04:13:31 +0000




jsid-1226587205-599120  DJ at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 14:40:05 +0000

I should have been more explicit. I was thinking of airliners, transports, bombers, and fighters, i.e. air transport and ordinance delivery, not Piper Cub equivalents. I thought the reference to the Air Force attempt at nuclear powered flight was a giveaway.

One lives and learns ...

jsid-1226590812-599126  Unix-Jedi at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 15:40:12 +0000


Those just aren't practical *without* a nuclear pile now.

Which is getting more and more practical. But the point is, in 1960, an electric airplane was totally impossible. Even 1990. Now, it's conceivable. Remember, the Wright Brothers didn't build a plane that would take even 3 people...

jsid-1226591412-599127  Ed "What the" Heckman at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 15:50:12 +0000

"Simply tossing money wildly at "research" (and especially ideologically driven "research" looking for miracles will never work.

Not to mention that disabling current technologies because you expect a miracle to happen is one of the stupidest things you can do.

jsid-1226606721-599142  DJ at Thu, 13 Nov 2008 20:05:21 +0000

I recall seeing a documentary fairly recently about the Air Force nuclear powered aircraft program that ended about 1961 or so. It was interesting, but I don't remember much of the details, except for one thing: The Air Force projected that the weight of the sheilding required to keep the crew from being fried was greater than the payload of any existing bomber of the time. Shielding testing was done on a B-36, so that says something.

Here is an interesting article on nuclear power for air. The money quote (for me, anyway) is:

"There are no fundamental technical reasons why subsonic nuclear aircraft cannot be made to fly successfully providing the aircraft is large enough. The weight of a completely shielded nuclear aircraft reactor varies about as the square root of the reactor power. Hence, the larger the aircraft the less is the weight fraction of the nuclear power system. Aircraft of 0.45 million kilograms (1 million lb) or greater are required to make the payload fraction greater than 15 percent of the gross weight."

Makes for one whopper of an aircraft, doesn't it?

Note that: 1) airplanes do crash and burn now and then; 2) nuclear power plants don't fly; and, 3) nuclear power plants are fought tooth and nail when anyone suggests they be built. Possible? Yup, but I won't hold my breath waiting for one.

jsid-1226626767-599157  DJ at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 01:39:27 +0000

Want to go to work for His Royal Highness? If you do, he wants to know a whole lot about you. In particular, pay attention to item (59) on the Questionnaire, which states:

"Do you or any members of your immediate family own a gun? If so, provide complete ownership and registration information. Has the registration ever lapsed? Please also describe how and by whom it is used and whether it has been the cause of any personal injuries or property damage."

I can't help but wonder what such "questionnaires" were like in previous administrations. But, imagine just what kind of person would be willing to actually answer this, um, this inquisition in order to work for him.

jsid-1226635268-599168  Kevin Baker at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 04:01:08 +0000

Do you or any members of your immediate family own a gun?

A gun? I've lost count.

jsid-1226673213-599173  DJ at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 14:33:33 +0000

Look at item 13:

"Electronic Communications: If you have ever sent an electronic communication, including but not limited to an e-mail, text message or instant message, that could suggest a conflict of interest or be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family, or the President-elect if it were made public, please describe."

It would require much of his first term just to fill out the questionnaire, wouldn't it?

jsid-1226676478-599174  DJ at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 15:27:58 +0000

A friend has an interesting comment. He thinks that if Obama had to fill out his own questionnaire, he wouldn't hire himself.

jsid-1226703983-599192  DJ at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 23:06:23 +0000

Sebastian wonders, as I did above, who would willingly subject himself to such a questionnaire. His take is:

"I guess they don’t know that in 99% of the country there is no registration of firearms. Unless, of course, they only intend to hire people from Chicago. Either way, if I had an employer put this before me as a condition of employment, I’d be out the door so fast I’d leave a vapor trail behind me."

More to the point:

"Who would do this except to wield power?"

One wonders, doesn't one?

jsid-1226704126-599193  DJ at Fri, 14 Nov 2008 23:08:46 +0000

Ah, I know (slaps hand to forehead).

Those who would not object are those who believe that it's just fine and dandy, indeed it's a requirement, for the goddamned gubmint to know everything there is to know about, well, everyone, right?

Sheesh. How did I miss it before?

 Note: All avatars and any images or other media embedded in comments were hosted on the JS-Kit website and have been lost; references to haloscan comments have been partially automatically remapped, but accuracy is not guaranteed and corrections are solicited.
 If you notice any problems with this page or wish to have your home page link updated, please contact John Hardin <jhardin@impsec.org>