HolyCoast

Monday, August 06, 2012

Rick's Twitter Feed

With the retirement of HolyCoast.com, you can still follow Rick's commentary at this Twitter feed or on Facebook:

HolyCoast.com Has Been Retired

After a little more than a month on hiatus, I've decided to make the retirement of HolyCoast.com permanent.  I've found that I can reach more people much more quickly through Twitter or Facebook, and I'm concentrating my efforts there.

If you still wish to find archived posts from my nearly eight years of blogging they'll still be available here.  The HolyCoast.com URL will no longer function after September 14, but holycoast.blogspot.com will continue.

See you on Twitter or Facebook!

Friday, June 29, 2012

A Little More Explanation About the Hiatus

As I announced yesterday HolyCoast.com is going on hiatus for the summer...and maybe beyond. I had already been considering ending daily blogging after the election, so this isn't a hasty decision. Without question, the Supreme Court decisions this week finally pushed me over the edge. Here's a little more about why I'm doing this:
  • Although the ages of blogs is not over, it's certainly not what it was a few years ago.  When I started there was no Twitter or Facebook, and now many people look to those sources for their information.  I've almost stopped reading blogs altogether and spend far more time on those two social networks.  My friend and follower list on Facebook and Twitter dwarf the daily readership of the blog.  When Don Surber suddenly quit his very successful blog a few weeks ago it was kind of a wake-up call.
  • With my smartphone I can now post to Twitter or Facebook pretty easily and reach many more people.
  • My own blog traffic has dropped significantly in the last four years.  Either I'm not providing content that people really want, or there's just less general interest in blogs.  It's probably a little of both.  I've found myself way too often looking at the numbers and going "why am I doing this?"  
  • Because I've never been able to build the blog to a high enough traffic level, I've never been able to attract the kind of advertising that would make this financially beneficial.
  • With rare exception my readers haven't chosen to contribute either, so since I'm doing this basically gratis which means I've got to either be really passionate about it...or I'm just nuts.  I'll leave it to you to decide.  
  • Since September, 2004, I've posted nearly ever day, often 10 or more posts a day - over 27,439 posts in all.  I've posted from home and from vacation and business trips all around the country.  That's a lot of work to do for free.  
I'm going to take the summer off, but if the old fire returns I may pick up again in September and continue through the election.  However, I'll probably end it for good after that.  During the summer I'll have my Twitter feed displayed in the first post, so if you don't follow me, you can at least check in there to see what I'm posting about.

To those of you who have been regular readers - thanks!  I've appreciated your comments and readership.  It's been quite a ride since 2004 and promises to get even more bizarre as time goes on.  You'll still be able to find me on Facebook and Twitter.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

And With That HolyCoast.com Goes on Hiatus

Now that the Federal government has been given unlimited power to do anything it wants, I don't want to spend my time documenting the end of a great country.  We were founded on principles that have been totally abandoned by both parties and our courts.  In order to keep from writing a string of epithets and threats, I'm going on hiatus.  I may come back in the Fall...or may not.  We'll see.

I'll still be active on Twitter and Facebook.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Obamacare: A Narrow Ruling Or Much Broader

Just saw Judge Napolitano on Fox and he explained that the scope of the Obamcare ruling will probably be evident according to who writes the opinion.  If it's Chief Justice Roberts, he expects a narrow ruling that strikes down the individual mandate but leaves most of the rest of the law intact, based on Roberts' own judicial philosophy.  On the other hand, if the opinion is written by Justice Kennedy he expects a broader smackdown of the entire statute.

The bad news is Kennedy wrote the Arizona opinion, which makes it quite unlikely he'd also get the Obamacare case.  It will probably be Roberts and at best we'll split the baby again, killing the mandate but leaving much of the monstrosity intact and still doing damage to the economy and jobs.

And I guarantee you the media has already written their pieces calling it a victory for Obama if that happens.

Some people on Twitter were talking about the effect of an overturn of Obamacare on the job market.  Would it suddenly spur an increase in hiring and a possible turnaround in the economy that would benefit Obama if the whole thing were to be tossed by the Supremes?  I don't think so.  Frankly, I don't see any hope of an increase in hiring until employers are sure Obama is gone.  With him still in office and willing to wield unconstitutional power against the economy, hiring and job expansion would be a tremendously risky enterprise for most businesses.

Should he lose on November 6th, however, look out.

Colorado Fire Doubles in Size Overnight

Colorado Springs and a number of other beautiful communities are facing disaster:
A three-day-old wildfire erupted with catastrophic fury Tuesday, ripping across the foothills neighborhoods of Colorado Springs, devouring an untold number of homes and sending tens of thousands fleeing to safety in what was shaping up as one of the biggest disasters in state history. "This is a firestorm of epic proportions," said Colorado Springs Fire Chief Richard Brown. The Waldo Canyon fire in El Paso County — which had been growing in the forested hills on the city's west side — blew into an inferno late in the afternoon, raging over a ridge toward densely populated neighborhoods.

An apocalyptic plume of smoke covered Colorado's second-largest city as thousands of people forced to evacuate clogged Interstate

25 at rush hour trying to get to their homes or to get out of the way.

By nightfall, roughly 32,000 people left their homes, chased out by the flames.

"We have homes burning right now," El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said shortly before 9 p.m.

The sheriff was among those forced from their homes by the fire.

"This is a very bad day," said Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach.

As the fire continued to grow, all of northwest Colorado Springs was ordered evacuated, including the Air Force Academy.
The pictures I posted last night show a frightening scene, including the fire approaching the Air Force Academy.  It's a very bad situation.  Pray for those folks.  More stunning photos here.

Obama Couldn't Get Rid of Claire McCaskill in 2008, But She's Scarce This Year

Claire McCaskill, Dem Senator from Missouri, was a frequent part of Obama's 2008 campaign.  But as she faces re-election this yeara, she's suddenly pretty scarce:
Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, one of the most vulnerable Democrats up for re-election in 2012, plans to skip the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

McCaskill said Tuesday she will spend the week campaigning in her home state instead. She joined a growing list of Democrats in conservative districts who have decided to avoid the convention, which will be a showcase of President Barack Obama's re-election campaign.

"Would you go to North Carolina for a bunch of parties and glad-handing, or would you stay home and work as hard as you know how and convince Missourians they should rehire you?" McCaskill said Tuesday between Senate votes.

But McCaskill insisted her decision was not about avoiding Obama. She said she's asked the President to campaign with her and will join Vice President Joe Biden for an event soon. McCaskill noted that she appeared recently with Obama at an event in Joplin, Mo.
The event she appeared at was a high school graduation in a town destroyed by a tornado a year ago. Not exactly the type of event any politician can afford to miss.

McCaskill joins an ever-growing list of Democrats who are going to stay as far away from Charlotte as possible. They don't want to get any Obama on them to taint their campaigns. It also tells me that Obama doesn't have a prayer of winning Missouri and will be a drag on the ticket for other Democrats. The same is becoming true in more and more states.

Obama Starts His Anti-Supreme Court Campaign

Road testing the theme for the Fall:
Barack Obama suggested that any decision by the US Supreme Court to overturn his landmark healthcare law would send the country “backwards” and that Americans did not want to “re-fight” the battle over healthcare.

It was the first sign that beyond the White House’s staunch defence of the Affordable Care Act Mr Obama is prepared to use the law as a rallying cry on the campaign trail. It is a risky strategy: about half the country remains opposed to the legislation, although most voters like the consumer protections that are guaranteed under the law.
Actually, well over half the people dislike Obamacare - especially in the way it was jammed down the throats of the people who hated it. The gimmicks used by Congress to get around taking an actual vote, the pure party line maneuvers...the whole thing stank.

Tomorrow morning we'll know which of the three possibly outcomes become reality:

  1. Obamacare is Upheld - complete disaster for America. Financial collapse becomes "when" and not "if".
  2. The Mandate is Ruled Unconstitutional, but The Remainder of the Law Stands - Obamacare becomes completely financially unsound, likely taking insurance companies down with it since they'll have to provide coverage without getting premium dollars from people who aren't sick and don't want coverage until they are.
  3. The Whole Thing is Tossed - Happy days are here again.  Congress can take another run at it, reforming the things about health care that can be reformed without destroying the whole system.
The day Obamacare was passed in Congress I added a half-mast flag to the top of this blog, signifying that it was a tragedy for America.  Should #3 come to pass I'll remove the flag.  Otherwise, it's there until Obama is gone.

Why Would Anyone Want to Be a Cop in Arizona?

Federal, state or local, it all sucks right now:
The Department of Homeland Security's refusal to cooperate with Arizona's court-tested crackdown on illegal immigration has field agents fuming, FoxNews.com has learned.

Within hours of the Supreme Court on Monday upholding of Arizona's requirement that police officers verify with federal authorities the immigration status of people they stop if suspected of being in the United States illegally, the Department of Homeland Security issued a memo telling agents not to take action unless the people are criminals, have recently arrived or pose a threat to national security.

“Anyone that is determined to be a low-level threat is subject to being released back into the general population since ICE does not view them as criminals,” one DHS agent told FoxNews.com. “It saddened me to see that ICE is choosing to operate under a ‘business as usual’ mind set rather than seeing how they can work with Arizona to accomplish the goals that they both share.”
And that's not the end of it - the Feds have set up a hotline so people, legal or illegal, can call and report cops that try and follow the state law. Obama is anti-American...period. He's got to go.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Colorado Fire Threatening Colorado Springs

This is getting very dangerous looking.  Just saw these two photos on Twitter.  This is the fire approaching the Air Force Academy:



And another shot of the fire approaching the more heavily populated areas.


Yikes!

Blogger and newspaper columnist Michelle Malkin has been out of her house for several days because of the threat from the fire, and one of the storm chasers I follow has also been told his home is in danger.  Pray for those people - they really need a break from the weather right now. The first is pushing right into town. Having been to Colorado Springs several times, it's a beautiful area that's going to take a long time to recover.

Brave New Movie From Pixar

I haven't seen the new Pixar movie "Brave" yet, but my daughter did and enjoyed it very much.  Kurt Schlichter, who writes for Big Hollywood when he's not lawyering or serving as a Colonel in the Army Reserve, saw the movie and thinks something's happening in Hollywood - this movie promotes a lot of good things that Hollywood usually belittles.  Read his review here.

Entertainment Headline of the Day

God takes a wife:
Morgan Freeman to marry his step-granddaughter
For some reason that reminds me of this Ray Stevens song:

Well, He'll Have a Vacation Story to Tell

Bison are not just big friendly shaggy cows:
Officials in Yellowstone National Park say a Massachusetts man was gored by a bull bison that threw him 10 feet in the air and then pinned him to the ground.

The man, who is in his mid-50s, suffered a broken collarbone, shoulder blade, several ribs and a groin injury in Saturday’s encounter near the Norris campground. He was airlifted to an Idaho Falls, Idaho hospital and is expected to recover. His name was not released.

Park officials say the man was not taunting the animal, but let the bull approach within a few feet of where he was sitting and refused to move away.

Park rules require visitors to stay at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves and at least 25 yards away from all other animals. If an animal approaches, it is the visitor’s responsibility to move a safe distance away.
My son is studying to be a park ranger, and in his classes they've talked about how some people go to National Parks thinking they were built by Disney and lawyers and they can't get hurt. At Yellowstone, the bison don't break into song like they do on the wall at Bear Country Jamboree. They're wild and potentially very dangerous. Not even your State Farm agent can help you if for some reason the thing gets mad at you (despite what you see on TV commercials).

Jimmuh Carter - Still Hating America After All These Years

The headline says it all:
Jimmy Carter Accuses U.S. of ‘Widespread Abuse of Human Rights’
I don't know if he hates America because they rejected him in 1980 with a crushing defeat, or just because he's an old brain-dead liberal. One thing's for sure, when he finally passes from this nation he hates so much you won't see the kind of outpouring of affection for him you saw when Ronald Reagan left us.

Booking Hotels With Your Mac? You May Be Paying Too Much

This is interesting:
When Orbitz, the online travel booking giant, learned that users of Apple products spend as much as 30 percent more than their Windows-using counterparts on hotels, the site began offering up pricier options first to those surfing from a Mac, the Wall Street Journal reports.
I've used Orbitz before, but not on a Mac. Most of the time I'm either booking directly with the hotel where I want to stay, or booking on Hotwire. You don't get to pick the hotel with Hotwire (only the star level and general location), but you can get great deals if you're not that picky.

Music Cartoon of the Day

This is good:


The Issues of Most Concern to Voters Are the Issues Obama Doesn't Want to Talk About

Why?  Because they're the areas where his performance is the worst:
 Poll of the Day: Jobs, budget deficit are top priorities for Americans -- Pew Research Center asks, "Which ONE of the following issues matters most to you in deciding your vote for president this year: jobs, the budget deficit, health care, Social Security, immigration, or gay marriage?": 35% said jobs, 23% said budget deficit, 19% said health care, 11% said immigration, 4% said gay marriage, 2% said other, while 2% were unsure.
With Obama's signature achievement, Obamacare, likely to take a big hit this year, his record on the top three concerns of voters is one of epic failure. Gay marriage or amnesty for illegals is not going to save him.

KHND Interview Coming Up at 8:38 AM PDT

I'll be going live on KHND radio at about 8:38 am PDT.  You can listen along to the live broadcast via their webcam stream at the website.  If you miss the live broadcast I'll post the podcast later when it becomes available.

Is Debbie Downer Out At the DNC?

Debbie Wasserman Schultz has been a disaster for Democrats as head of the Democrat National Committee.  Looks like the party has finally figured that out (from Morning Jolt):
The Shark Tank: "According to our source within the Democratic Party, who is also a close associate of Wasserman Schultz, the arrangements have already been made for her to leave DNC regardless if President Obama wins re-election or not. This same source believes that Wasserman Schultz will be forced to resign behind closed doors and then stage a press event in which she tells Americans that her job as the DNC chair was a temporary one and that she is moving on with her congressional career."
When people can make comparisons like this, you're going to have problems getting people to take you seriously:


Dem Convention Money Woes Continue - NASCAR Event Canceled

I'm sure the Dems had high hopes for North Carolina when they booked their convention there, but fundraising is suffering and events are being dropped:
Democrats canceled a political convention kick-off event at the Charlotte Motor Speedway and will move the activities to Charlotte’s main business district, the convention’s host committee announced.

“While we regret having to move CarolinaFest away from our great partners at the Charlotte Motor Speedway and the City of Concord, we are thrilled with the opportunity that comes with hosting this event in Uptown Charlotte,” said Dan Murrey, the executive director of the Charlotte in 2012 Convention Host Committee.

The move comes as party planners are grappling with a fundraising deficit of roughly $27 million, according to two people familiar with the matter who requested anonymity to discuss internal party politics. With a party ban on direct contributions from corporations, the host committee has raised less than $10 million, well short of its $36.6 million goal, said one of the people.
NASCAR was not exactly their target audience since it represents freedom, fossil fuels, speed, and a general disregard of governmental authority. If NASCAR was run by Democrats the cars would be electric, couldn't exceed 50 mph and the races would be no more than 35 miles long...or until the last car loses its charge.

Obama is still planning to accept the nomination in a 74,000 seat stadium, but unless they pack the place with union members who have been paid to be there, I can't see them coming close to filling the place.  It's not 2008 anymore.

Thursday It Will Likely Be Chief Justice Roberts Delivering the Blow to Obamacare

It's really a shame we have to wait two more days for this, but according to veteran court watchers it's looking quite likely that when the opinion comes down Chief Justice John Roberts will be delivering it and he's not likely to uphold the individual mandate.  From Forbes:
Today, we learned that the final day of the Supreme Court’s 2011-2012 session will take place at 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 28, and that Chief Justice John Roberts will most likely issue the majority opinion. (I’ll be running a live blog that day over at National Review, beginning at 9:30 a.m.) From what Roberts said at oral argument last March, it’s likely that this means that Obamacare’s individual mandate is going down, but that some of the law will remain intact. Here’s why.

We don’t know for sure that Roberts is going to write the majority opinion, but veteran court-watchers say it’s almost certain, because Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority opinion in the Arizona immigration case that was read today. The Supremes try to rotate the authorship duties around, so that everyone gets their fair share of opinion-writing. After today, Roberts is on deck.

Prior to oral argument in March, it was widely speculated that Roberts would join the majority, no matter which side won, so that he could control the actual opinion that had legal weight in the case. (As Chief Justice, he has that right.) This would mean, most likely, either a 5-4 decision against the individual mandate, or a 6-3 decision in its favor.

Roberts expressed deep skepticism of the individual mandate

However, after oral argument, it became more clear that Roberts was skeptical of the mandate’s constitutionality, and understood that the mandate is really about cross-subsidization, and not personal responsibility. “If I understand the law,” Roberts said, “the [insurance] policies that you’re requiring people to purchase must contain provision for maternity and newborn care, pediatric services, and substance use treatment. It seems to me that you cannot say that everybody is going to need substance use treatment or pediatric services, and yet that is part of what you require them to purchase…You cannot say that everybody is going to participate in the substance use market and yet you require people to purchase insurance coverage for that.”

Roberts was also skeptical that the individual mandate’s consequences could only be limited to health care, because health care is somehow constitutionally unique. “I think that would be a very significant intrusion by the Court into Congress’s power,” Roberts said. “It’s good for you in this case to say, ‘Oh, it’s just [limited to] insurance.’ But once we say that there is a market and Congress can require people to participate in it, as some would say—or as you would say, that people are already participating in it—it seems to me that we can’t say there are limitations on what Congress can do under its commerce power…all bets are off.”

Roberts also ridiculed the idea that the mandate was constitutional because it was a tax, not a penalty. “You’re telling me they thought of it as a tax,” he asked Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, “they defended it on the tax power. Why didn’t they say it was a tax?”
Severability is another issue. If you read on in the article you'll see that Roberts was not as adamant about severability as he was the mandate, so that one could go either way. Personally, I think the absence of a severability clause should make this cut and dried - if the mandate is unconstitutional, the whole thing should be tossed. Unfortunately, the courts don't always work that way. They often see things that aren't there and call them there anyway.  How do you think we got a right to abortion?

And, as evidenced by the Arizona Immigration ruling, you can't always count on oral arguments to tell you how the case will be decided.  We'll just have to wait it out and hope for the best.