Timing Shocker

Teh Present wants a joint session of Congress and has scheduled his superdupermuiimportante “Jobs Speech” for the SAME NIGHT AND TIME as…

the FIRST GOP DEBATE INCLUDING RICK PERRY.

Go. Figure.

To quote the White House on Fox just now, “Hey. There’s lots of channels.”

They said they’d be the most transparent administration in history and, by God, they are!

UPDATE: Speaker Boehner to Present,

“You know, come to think of it, Thursday works better for us.”

Oh. Yes. He. DID.

BWAHAHAhahahaha!!!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anything but the PUMPKINS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Irene hit some Sussex County farms hard

…Yet to be determined is the effect of the flooding fields on the pumpkin crop.

Freeborn said if the field dries out quickly, it’s possible the pumpkins will recover and won’t rot. She said there is just too much acreage to turn the still-growing pumpkins by hand.

“But farming is a community. We might be competitors (at farmstands) but we will share product to sell,” she said.

Charles Kuperus of Kuperus Farmside Gardens & Florist in Sussex Borough said he will be among those seeking pumpkins from other growers, as his acre of developing orange gourds was wiped out.

Oh, the humanity!

Zen breathing exercises in 3…2…1…

A 30% Overestimation on the Crop Harvest?

That word hasn’t gotten much airplay.

That’s Just Cruel

So I threw my back out a bit during the Irene prep; somewhere between lugging sheets of plywood about and carrying potted plants to and fro it just said “enough.” A literal pain, yes, and since Saturday I’ve been hobbling and shuffling about, wincing and cursing and trying to think of creative ways to pick things up off of the floor that don’t involve any type of bending.

I went to the Duane Reade drugstore near my office yesterday to get another box of those heat wrap pads, as I just ain’t going to go around in public smelling like hose greasy menthol-based cremes (no matter how good they make my back feel) and I just had to laugh at the complete FAIL that presented itself on their shelves. Oh sure, they had a good variety of heat pads and unguents and cremes for back pain…and just about every one was on the bottom shelf of the aisle!

Are you kidding me?

I’m sure they have a hidden camera to record people with back trouble trying to get those things; hell I would.

ths UPDATE: I’ve got a snappy tune to do some orthopedic, back strengthening exercises to, Bingley!

You’ll feel right as rain in no time.

Never let it be said I don’t love my brother.

Don’t Tell Jim!

When he finds out he’s not even safe here

GLOUCESTER TOWNSHIP, N.J. — A 2-foot alligator — thought to be an escaped pet — was found and captured as residents of Gloucester Township, N.J., cleaned up Sunday in the wake of Irene.

A resident of an apartment complex spotted the reptile about 1:45 p.m. local time, lurking under a bridge by a lake.

It’s Called “The Resolute Desk”

It was a gift from Queen Victoria to President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1880 and was built from the timbers of the British Arctic Exploration ship Resolute.

Perhaps you’ve seen it in some pictures…

In all fairness, there is one picture of W I’ve found with his feet up, and one of Gerry Ford.

And I do mean “one”.

Someone in OUR family would resolutely be saying “Get yer God*&$ed feet off the frickin’ desk!!!”, regardless of my last name, since they do it already, regardless of the fact that it might have come from a Salvation Army Thrift Store.

Katia

I guess I’ll keep the plywood handy.

My Bride Just Called To Say The Power’s Back On

Yay, let’s give a mighty Yay indeed.

Yeah, as Sis mentioned last night we had to 86 all the food in the freezers; after 40+ hours they just gave up the ghost. So I had a few neighbors over and we had pork chops, ribeyes, ny strips and about a 3lb section of chateaubriand. Oh and wine.

We made what lemonade we could from the lemons presented, as the saying goes. Sort of.

More later. Thanks for all the kind thoughts.

Bingley Just Called

He and Daughter had managed to trek down to the local gym, who assured them they had power (read: A/C and hot water). Said much of their little burgh was blasted, with trees down across the road, so he felt their chances of their own power coming back on anytime soon were “boned”, but that beaucoup crews were out doing yeoman’s work. Even, he said, at 4 a.m. the morning of the storm ~ he’s seen a little convoy making it’s flashing way through the heighth of the onslaught.

Time to break into the freezer, though.

UPDATE: And poop. Things starting to thaw (his fancypants bottom freezer french door is in a cabinet, hence they couldn’t wrap it), so LUAU at Bingley’s!

We Watched the NatGeo Interview With President Bush Last Night

Compelling.

Mesmerizing.

Whatever his faults, the man doesn’t have a phony bone in his body. Not one.

And his unswerving, palpable love for this country shines through every second of the piece.

I feel cynical in saying I know why they buried it at 10 o’clock on a Sunday night after seeing it.

But I know why.

According to Radar, Irene Has Her Eye on Bingley…Literally

He texts it’s just windy and a couple of trees branches down, with power out. Whew. That’s great.

Looks to be lots of dry air intrained right behind the southeast center of circulation and that’s what next up over then. Great news.

I hope all of you who got to welcome old girl this weekend made out as well. What a spectacular storm. There is NO WAY the pressure should have been able to stay as low and Irene to stay as powerful as she did. She should have pooped out long ago.

Must have been the Irish in her.

Plywood Hints for Boarding Up Your Windows From Acknowledged Hurricane Experts

…us.
*Newer 2012 post here*
ths UPDATE: Welcome INSTAPUNDIT readers and much thanks to Glen! Since Bingley is in New Jersey, and, as major dad and I are veterans of major Hurricanes Bertha, Fran, Ivan and Dennis (along with others less significant in damage for us, but worth preparing for), I thought I would offer up what’s worked for us in terms of preparation, both food-wise, house-wise and some of the things folks don’t know about, that make life bearable if those winds of almost-September come early. I hope you’ll find something that you didn’t know before. First up is the heavy lifting.

UPDATE: Shopping list suggestions for tonight/assoonasyoufreakincan is up underneath the board pictures. Next up is how to get inside ready.

UPDATE REDUX: And our “WHAT TO DO INSIDE” is posted at the bottom of it all, so now we have our experience covered completely, soup to nuts: food/supply shopping, to board up, to getting the inside of the house set. Make lists. Don’t trust yourself to remember everything you need and/or want to do. Write it all down. I do, every time. I hope the ‘all in one place’ format is proving helpful and PLEASE don’t hesitate to comment or email questions if you have any at all. thsister-at-gmail-dot-com

******************************************************************************************************
Full disclosure. For Bertha and Fran in NC (Cat 2 and 3, 56 days apart in ’96), we only lived 10 miles inland, were on the eastern side of the storm both times (translation: got beat all to hell), never boarded up and did just fine. The most important thing we did, and have always done, is CLEAR THE AREA OF POTENTIAL FLYING OBJECTS. Anything and everything in our yard AND the neighborhood that could be turned into a missile (including that 100lb garden pot you don’t think can fly…it can), goes into the garage. Bertha came in during the daytime and, along around noon, we got to watch the neighbor’s metal shed explode and fly through our backyard at about 110 mph. That was the only thing we couldn’t control that day that went walkabout, and it would have killed someone if the wind hadn’t been parallel to the house.

If you want to board up, this is how we did it (In Pensacola, ’04 for Hurricane Ivan). (Now, there are great Plylox Hurricane Clips available, which will save you step #2, if you can find them. Be prepared ~ they’re a bitch to get them on the house, but they’re simple and great*.) They were all sold out when we hit Lowe’s, pre-Ivan.

Be prepared ~ NONE of this is cheap. BUT. The peace of mind is ENORMOUS. Plus, you’re so pooped from the effort, not to mention standing in line for supplies, that you sleep soundly. Measure and KNOW WHAT YOU NEED BEFORE YOU GET THERE. Be ready to make quick adjustments for what’s left on the shelves.

1) Don’t screw with anything less than 1/2 inch plywood, REAL plywood. (That’s assuming there’s any left when you get to Home Depot. We used 3/4″.) Cut to fit flush INSIDE the windowframe. (We used two pieces here. Shaved the edge off a 5′ by 8′ full sheet and then a smaller piece to cover completely to the top of the window, hence, if you squint, you’ll notice a seam in the plywood about 3/4 of the way up.)

2) What’s going to hold those boards in place are 1 x 4′s on either side, snugged up tight against the plywood, cut to the height of the window, drilled into the frame from the side and held in with hex top TapCon screws, because of the masonry. I think we had a max of 5 screws per side.

I’ll have another post shortly on supplies and preparations:

(That’s dogfood double-wrapped in the plastic bags and Miller Light for the Squid Terrorist to keep the generator running…)

* Handy Tip: The Squid Terrorist actually drilled through his clips and screwed them to the plywood sheets before attempting to pop them into the windows. Saves a ton of frustration.

****************************************************************************************************
Alright, shopping time.

IMHO and hard won experience, these are stores every single household should have (and you may already have much of it). Use your brain, based on the number and age of folks in your household.
Remember you are going to be HOT, cranky and exerting yourself in the aftermath if, GOD FORBID, the thing smacks you good.
Think of preparing for this as a picnic on crack. Take a good hard look at what you already have on your shelves first, add or subtract according to what you have onhand vs your particular needs/family’s tastes and then…

A Few Days PRIOR:

3 gallons BOTTLED water per person (for 3 days) minimum
enough prescription medication to get you through 10 DAYS if you take any
canned tuna/chicken/SPAM/shelf stable meats
those damned nasty vienna snausages
canned chili
beenie weenies
canned soups like “chunky” that don’t need water added
mayo/mustard/ketchup
bread (Get the one with the FURTHEST OUT SHELF DATE)
canned vegetables, like green beans or baby peas
kraft macaroni and cheese in a box
dry cereal
instant oatmeal
squeezy cheese
large jar(s) peanut butter
large jar(s) jelly
various boxes of crackers
instant coffee or tea
coffemate, dry milk or shelf stable milk
sugar, salt, pepper
juice boxes
instant potatoes (like a BIG box of “Potato Buds”)
whatever fresh fruit your family enjoys
butter or (gulp) margarine
dogfood/catfood if you have furry family members besides, well…
snacks and chips
canned or plastic jarred fruits, like cocktail or peaches
pudding cups
dish detergent
antiseptic hand soap
paper towels
paper napkins
plastic utensils (forks, knives,spoons)
paper plates
plastic trash bags
ZIPLOCK baggies, QT and GAL
DUCK tape
boxes of wooden matches
MANUAL CAN OPENER
large candles (and not really stinky ones) As leelu notes in the comments:WITH a GAS LEAK, CANDLES CAN BE BAD. **SITUATIONAL AWARENESS** KNOW what’s going on.
bug spray, both yard and personal
A BATTERY OPERATED RADIO (that voice in the dark from the local TV station will be your BEST FRIEND, trust me.)
LARGE BATTERY OPERATED LIGHTS that will sit independently (hard to go to a dark bathroom holding a flashlight)
small flashlights
LED poplights are great
BATTERIES and SPARES that fit EVERY SINGLE THING YOU NEED BATTERIES FOR!!!
FILL YOUR PROPANE CANNISTER NOW (if you are on a direct gas hook-up, get a charcoal grill)
3 bags of charcoal
lighter fluid for the charcoal
CASH
CAR CHARGER for cell phones (ours were worthless during Ivan but I’ve heard they’ve come a long way, tower-wise…)
COOLERS for the ice (and the stuff that’ll come out of that fridge)
FIRST AID KIT which I bolster with additional Ace bandages, BandAids of every size and description, sterile wraps, tapes, Neosporin, hydrocortizone, anti-histimine pills, aspirin etc.
Little Coleman tanks if you have camping stoves or lights (as always, to be used OUTSIDE AFTERWARDS…DUH)
Old fashioned board games, playing cards, Mille Bornes, Yahtzee, books (especially with wired little ones)

Hold off on ice until the latest you possibly can, which is why it’s NOT on the “go after work TONIGHT” list. TOP YOUR GAS TANKS off while you can, too, as Bingley points out. You all will have to fight a ton more people at the pump than we ever did down here.

*DIRECT plug-in phone like a Princess type, if you have a PHONE COMPANY landline. Your multiple remote handset phone will not work when the power goes out, and your old fashioned one may very well get a call out on the substation batteries. See below.

**********************************************************************************************************

Bingley just rang a bell: when you’re ready to close the house up,
LOCK YOUR GARAGE DOORS DOWN. If you don’t park in your garage, PULL YOUR CARS SNUG UP TO THE DOORS. They provide the most excellent wind baffle you can imagine and, considering the further up the East Coast you go, the less the doors are reinforced like ours here in the Panhandle, you will NEED every little bit of wind mitigation you can muster. You car insurance will take car of whatever Irene does to the vehicle.

This is doubly important because, contrary to the old wives tale about “equalizing pressure’, if those winds get into your garage, not only do they start tearing the garage to bits, they start LIFTING YOUR ROOF OFF. And then your whole house is a goner. The only house in our neighborhood to have the roof blown to bits during the 140mph+ gusts of Ivan was the ONE home where the owner had the garage door “cracked” opened to “relieve the pressure”.
*********************************************************************************************************
*What to Do Inside*

Get Your Important “Stuff” Together

Your papers, diplomas, etc. All those things that make your life identifiable? Those things your would rush out of a burning building with? If they’re not already in one place together, get them together NOW. And add one more thing ~ a copy of a utility bill, like electric or phone. If, God forbid, you have to evacuate and they work it like they do down here, that address on your drivers license WILL NOT BE SUFFICIENT PROOF OF YOUR RESIDENCY. You HAVE to have a utility bill with THAT address and YOUR name in your possession to return to your home. Period. (Great evacuation tips here in the comments.)
Have a “plan”. WHO are you going to call when it’s over, WHO knows where all your stuff is if, God forbid, something happens. If you get separated, have a meet-up. In our family, it’s Bingster and me tag-teaming. He has all our info for both sides of the family (including Kcruella). When the batteries on the landline substations were still working the morning after Ivan, I got a call out to him, and that’s how everyone else knew we were okay. AT&T screwed the pooch cell-phone-wise here, so we have KEPT our landline, in spite of everything. Trauma dies hard.

What to Do With Important “Stuff”

You all will laugh, but I double plastic bag it, duct tape it…and put it in the dishwasher, then latch the thing shut and tape over the entire front control panel. It’s waterproof and even if one of those spin-up tornados takes a chunk of the roof, the documents of my life are going nowhere, because they’re bolted under the counter and DRY. Other middlin’ precious things I double bag up as well and stash in a rack-free self-cleaning oven and the dryer (duct-taping the door of that shut).

Potable Water

Make sure every single water toting vessel is clean and filled with filtered (if you can) water, from the sun-tea jar to the ancient Igloo softball cooler to tea kettle, and all the pitchers in between. This augments the bottled water on your list and is the FIRST water you use. (Make sure it’s COVERED to keep out bugs/dust.) As well, EVERY POT is filled to the brim with tap water for use as either coffee/tea/mac ‘n cheese makings or wash/rinse water, as well as pet drinking water. All that’s staged on the kitchen counters.

Get ALL Your Laundry Done

You can run out of underwear FAST and blow through some serious t-shirts clearing flotsom. Plus, the second the last load is out of the washer, fill it up on it’s largest setting with cold water and STOP it. Voilà. Another source of water for rinse/washing. (The washing machine also makes an EXCELLENT ice cooler if you are space challenged, trust me. Fill it with THAT instead.)

Bathrooms

Scrub EVERY tub SPARKLING With a bleach based cleaner. We use a piece of saran wrap over the stopper, then plug it to make absolutely sure there’s NO leakage, then FILL THAT SUCKER UP. This becomes both relatively clean water to dip out for a sink sponge bath AND the ALL IMPORTANT FLUSH THE TOILET water. (And is ONLY used for…well, not tinkling.) Speaking of which, it doesn’t hurt to have a “Tidy Bowl” beforehand, if there’s a chance the power might be out for DAYS, if you get my drift…
Now, you may get lucky and have a trickle of water like we did after Fran, but the water company may beg you not to use it, because they’re trying to find leaks, or it’s not potable or whatever. (Another reason to HAVE A REAL RADIO: PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS CAN SAVE YOUR LIFE)

GIVE YOUR PETS AMPLE OPPORTUNITIES TO “DO THEIR BUSINESS”. Once the front door shuts on the howling outside, it’s shut for GOOD. If it comes in during the day, we make meals a tad lighter and earlier than usual. The Scotties and Labradors have always seemed to know something big was on the way and their systems have responded accordingly, but, let’s face it: when you gotta go, you gotta go. So don’t force the poor things into that position in the first place. Plenty of available water, but schmaybe that big dinner isn’t necessary/breakfast, okay?

LOCAL RADIO STATIONS (as well as simulcasts from local TV channels or your local university Public Radio) WILL BE YOUR BEST SOURCE OF WEATHER INFO for your area, not to mention what’s happening as the storm whirls overhead. John Ed Thompson out of Fox10, Mobile, AL is a GOD in our household for what he did during Ivan. At 3 in the morning, when ~ to quote the Squid Terrorist on the walkie talkie from next door ~ it “Sounds like the Devil’s trying to beat my front door down! I’m fixin’ to nail 2×4′s over it and, if that doesn’t work, I’m breaking apart the china cabinet to use IT!

Creature Comforts

While you’re busy as a bee, I always, ALWAYS recommend setting the thermostat on your A/C (while you have it) as LOW AS YOU CAN POSSIBLY STAND IT.

As in MEATLOCKER. Wearing SWEATS IN AUGUST cold. “But, ths, why?” you ask.

Because the second that power goes out and ALL those anxious people are still in your house in August breathing?

That temp is going to climb and F.A.S.T. And it will suck so bad.

And you will still have HOURS of storm to go, and schmaybe days without power. You’ll thank me.

The Refrigerator

We were sort of old school with this. As I told Bingley in the comments, this is what we’ve always done, and ONLY works with a mostly FULL FREEZER. Once we’ve gotten ice ~ usually three to four of the big coolers worth, then three stacked on each other, on a beach towel, covered with garbage bags, then blankets for insulation ~ we already have inventoried the fridge itself. When the power starts going dodgey, we’ll transfer all the perishables out of the fridge to the lone ice chest (milk, BACON, eggs, half & half, etc.) and shut the door FOR GOOD. That’s IT. No peeking, no forgetting, no going in for something ~ you want the fridge to cool completely back down. When the power finally gives up the ghost, we throw unopened, big plastic garbage bags over the whole fridge, then cover that with packing blankets or whatever you have. Wrap some duct tape around it and keep your paws off. Believe or not, that will keep all but the flimsiest frozen goods rock solid for at least three days. If you don’t have power by then, you can start defrosting stuff and eating it. *NEVER eat anything that’s partially thawed. Throw it out. (*CHECK FOR THIS THE SECOND THE POWER COMES BACK ON as well, or it’ll refreeze and you could easily get sick from it later, and be clueless why. Don’t take the chance.)

With your ice chests, just break them out as you need them, always keeping the extras covered. We had ice for a week and a half after Ivan doing it this way, and thank goodness. (The stack worked out great against the door when the winds were threatening to blow it in. Dual purpose! And good times…)

There is NOTHING like the comfort of knowing you did everything you could possibly do to prepare. It’s out of your hands from that point forward.

Have a cocktail.

It’s amazing how many knuckleheads who evacuated and watched the whole damn thing on TV came home empty handed, small children in tow no less! We were living like refugees and had to give THEM supplies.

DO NOT RUN OUTSIDE THE SECOND THE WIND SORT OF DIES DOWN

Trees will still be falling. On your gourd.

DO NOT GO LOLLYGAGGING AROUND AFTERWARD TO “SEE”

No electricity TO RUN GAS STATION PUMPS. No electricity TO RUN STOP LIGHTS. LIVE ELECTRICAL WIRES LAYING EVERYWHERE Flat tires upon multiple flat tires.

IT’S ANARCHY. STAY HOME.

Whip you up some coffee, scrambled eggs and lovely applewood smoked bacon sammiches on the Weber gas grill, like we’ve done the morning after EVERY hurricane.

It’s a good thing.

Aw Poop

Sis, do you have any plywood-nailing-over-the-windows advice?

THIS STEERING PATTERN SHOULD PREVENT IRENE FROM MOVING WELL OFFSHORE OF THE NORTHEASTERN STATES. THE OFFICIAL TRACK FORECAST HAS BEEN SHIFTED VERY SLIGHTLY TO THE WEST OF THE PREVIOUS ONE AND IS ROUGHLY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE…WHICH IS BRACKETED BY THE U.K. MET. OFFICE MODEL ON THE EAST AND THE GFDL MODEL ON THE WEST.

So I’m looking at 105 mph sustained at this point on Sunday.

Yay.

BREAKING: Steve Jobs Has Just Resigned

Yikes. Must be bad.

And it sure will be tomorrow.

His statement says he can’t continue. Aw, jeez.

A Moment Of Silence Please

Joey Vento, owner of Genos, has died

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joey Vento, the owner of a landmark south Philadelphia cheesesteak stand who told customers to order in English, has died at age 71.

Vento’s nephew Joseph Perno, a manager at Geno’s Steaks, told The Associated Press that Vento had a massive heart attack and died Tuesday. He said family members had just gotten out of the hospital and wouldn’t be making any immediate statements.

Rest in Peace, Good Sir.

Imagine This For a Moment: A Loyal Wife (For Anonymity’s Sake, Let’s Call Her “NJSue”) Feels Compelled to Secretly Tape Her Husband (Let’s Call Him…”Bingley” For Lack of Anything Better) in the Kitchen

…after weeks of strange noises in the early morning.

To her horror, she sees him…kibble dancing.

At least it wasn’t cat juggling.

I’d Never Thought I’d Say This

But you know what? I almost totally agree with this line from Thomas Friedman

He’s not Jimmy Carter. He’s Tiger Woods — a natural who’s lost his swing.

Let’s make the logical extension of this, shall we? If Obama is Tiger, then logically that makes the United States Elin, whom he pledged to cherish, honor and protect.

How’d that turn out?

This Handsome Marine With Such Loving, Strong Arms?

We lost him Thursday, in Afghanistan. He was only 19.

They’re bringing him home to Pensacola today. He’s from a little community just a tad north of here, but they’re all local, you know. They’re all our boys.

So we’ll all be there, as many as we can, either along the road or on bikes with the motorcade.

So his folks and fiancée know how very much we thought of their magnificent young man…and the people who loved him.

Sweet dreams, sweet boy and rest your brave warrior heart in peace.

Semper Fidelis, LCpl Travis Nelson.

While, Horribly, the National Cathedral Sustained Major Damage Yesterday

Darth Vader is fine.

@WNCathedral
National Cathedral
@maddixranger We’ve checked, and Darth Vader appears to be okay.

Really. Vader. A gargoyle.

My Senator

…at the Reagan Library last night.

Gloom and Doom, Doom and Gloom

It’s all we have…

…Consumer spending slowed sharply in May as rising gasoline prices left Americans with less to spend on other items, the government reported Friday.

The Commerce Department said that spending rose by just 0.4 percent last month after a 0.7 percent gain in April. Income growth also slowed to an advance of just 0.4 percent last month, reflecting weaker job growth.

…The report on personal incomes and consumer spending provided further evidence that the economy, after growing strongly in the first three months of the year, slowed sharply in the spring as Americans were battered by rising gasoline prices, higher interest rates and a cooling housing market.

…to look back on fondly as we survey the wreckage of two rounds of Obama induced “Recovery Bummer”.

The paragraphs above? From a post I did on the gloomy literary license slant of a couple of June 2006 AP/Al Reuters reports on dismal Bush administration economic numbers. They WERE truly horrifying, in retrospect: a first quarter revised UPward from 4.8% to 5.3% GDP, with a faltering 4.6% unemployment rate. I’m so glad Barack Obama came along for these guys to annoint as the chosen one and they could put away the poison pen for a couple years. You know ~ a president with RESULTS worthy of respect, if not downright adulation. (Here, AP reporter ~ a Kleenix to wipe the spittle from your lip at the thought.)

Good times, good times. Horrifying how far we’ve fallen, thanks to Captain Slice, his Uncle Harry and Nanny Botox.

There is one thing that always bugs me to no end when discussion of the Bush years gets to raging and the blame monkeys start screeching. First, we were heading into a recession just as Willie Jeff exited stage left, so “The Clinton Golden Years” depend on your definition of “golden”. For all the howling about the “tax breaks” and leaving, what in hindsight, looks like a pretty miniscule deficit, coupled with this administration’s completely bogus glomming onto every natural/unatural disaster in addition to BUSHBUSHBUSH as excuses for their complete and utter incompetence in all arenas under their purview…no one brings up September 11th when deconstructing Obama spin.

…Stocks had an enormous run at the end of the 1990s that peaked in the first quarter of 2000. And the comedown from the huge runup was brutal.

2000 was one of the worst years for the stock market, with the Nasdaq posting its biggest one-year loss on a percentage basis since its inception in 1971. The Dow recorded its biggest one-year percentage loss since 1981 and the S&P 500 index saw its biggest one-year drop since 1977.

A rough 2001 got worse after the attacks in September, but the market was already hurting before that. By the close of trade on Sept. 10, 2001, the Nasdaq had fallen 31 percent on the year, the Dow industrials had fallen 11 percent and the S&P 500 index had fallen 17 percent.

They did it again last night on The NewsHour. I don’t understand how any defense of Bush’s record gets distilled to just “tax breaks” and a $160 billion deficit.

This country was on its KNEES, gasping for breath emotionally and ECONOMICALLY. When the Big Board finally opened, I’m sure there’s not many people who care to remember what happened…and KEPT happening…and where we wound up when the slide mercifully, finally stopped at the end of the week. But the financial markets were like a long tailed cat and a rocking chair ~ any little creak could cause a wild swing, a gyration in the averages. There were terrorists around every corner and no reason to believe otherwise. What is this thing, “stability”?

We were now governed by the rainbow colors of the threat level chart.

George Bush, his economic team and a mighty pissed off American people brought us back from the edge of the abyss. The challenges he faced almost the second he walked into that office were immense. Catastrophic. And they didn’t stop. (Katrina, anyone?) Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t recall a single time where that “simple” Texan blamed…well…anybody, but someone who made a bomb, planned an attack or actually flew an airplane into a building.

Dear God. I can only pray with my whole heart that we stay safe through the efforts of those who protect us while this infantile loser is in office.

Nobody does everything right and there are many, many things to point a finger at Bush for, but not EVERYthing.

A real man would know that. Sometimes you just keep your hand in your pocket.

A Horrific, Mind-Numbing Tragedy

Good god, the devastation

Damn you, Chimpy.

Team America: World Transit

The “F-Yeah!” of bus companies

Are We Having An Earthquake In Manhattan?

My building is shaking!

5.8 in Virginia!

How soon before Obama says “My administration inherited one of the most tectonically active planets in the solar system”?

Layers And Layers Of Fact-Checkers

Oh, and Editors, don’t forget them! Yes, that’s what separates the Professional Media and those inaccurate pajama-clad barbarians.

Here’s a perfect example of the keen eye for factual detail that distinguishes REAL JOURNALISM from this wild peasant tripe:

MILWAUKEE (AP) – Mention Amazon to the incoming class of college freshmen and they are more likely to think of shopping than the South American river. PC doesn’t stand for political correctness and breaking up is a lot easier thanks to Facebook and text messaging.

These are among the 75 references on this year’s Beloit College Mindset List, a compilation intended to remind teachers that college freshmen born mostly in 1993 see the world in a much different way:

…The “yadda, yadda, yadda” generation that’s been quoting Seinfeld since they were old enough to talk also has always seen women serve as U.S. Supreme Court justices and command U.S. Navy ships.

…Still not feeling old? Consider this: Andre the Giant, River Phoenix and Frank Zappa all died before these students were born.

Let’s see…”mostly born in 1993″…

“always seen women serve as U.S. Supreme Court justices”

Sandra Day O’Connor was appointed in 1981.

“and command U.S. Navy ships.”

Lieutenant Commander Darlene Iskra took command in 1990.

“Andre the Giant, River Phoenix and Frank Zappa all died before these students were born.”

Andre the Giant died January 27th, 1993.

River Phoenix died October 31st, 1993.

Frank Zappa died December 4th, 1993.

Seriously, what exactly do these “professionals” do?

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