Saturday, April 30, 2011
Friday, April 29, 2011
The nine-digit SSN, which has been issued in more than 400 million different sequences, is divided into three parts:No link, unfortunately.
Area numbers – The first three numbers originally represented the state in which a person first applied for a social security card. Numbers started in the northeast and moved westward. This meant that people on the east coast had the lowest numbers and those on the west coast had the highest. Since 1972, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has assigned numbers and issued cards based on the ZIP code in the mailing address provided on the original application form. Since the applicant’s mailing address doesn’t have to be the same as his residence, his area number doesn’t necessarily represent the state in which he resides.
Group numbers – These two middle digits, which range from 01 through 99, are simply used to break all the SSNs with the same area number into smaller blocks to make administration easier. (The SSA says that, for administrative reasons, group numbers issued first consist of the odd numbers from 01 through 09, and then even numbers from 10 through 98, within each area number assigned to a state. After all the numbers in group 98 of a specific area have been issued, the even groups 02 through 08 are used, followed by odd groups 11 through 99.)
Serial numbers – Within each group designation, serial numbers — the last four digits in an SSN — run consecutively from 0001 through 9999.
The numbers are not recycled. Recycling numbers might become an issue someday, but not any time soon — there are only about a billion possible combinations.
From a Harvey MacKay column.
Thursday, April 28, 2011
The post from which this comment was extracted is here.
Will Collier looks. "Limited supply plus growing demand equals higher prices. That’s a formula so simple, even a community organizer should be able to understand it."
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Monday, April 25, 2011
The dash cam video is from a state trooper escorting Marine home.
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Saturday, April 23, 2011
The President did issue an Earth Day Proclamation - quietly, at the end of “a three-day campaign-style trip logging 10,666 miles on Air Force One, eating up some 53,300 gallons at a cost of about $180,000. And that doesn't include the fuel consumption of his helicopter, limo, or the 29 other vehicles that travel with that car.”
We know which way the Democrats lean.
Friday, April 22, 2011
Thursday, April 21, 2011
Someone’s got to say it. Predicting a pilot’s intent might prevent collisions. But it can also neutralize a human counterattack. Or it can allow the drones’ armed cousins to mimic Israel in the Six Day War and blow up the manned aircraft on the tarmac. Coincidentally, according to the retcon in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, April 19, 2011 is the day that Skynet goes online. Think about it.A bit overwrought, I think.
NASA should be honest and provide the answers we seek on the criteria used to reach this decision and why Houston failed to meet those criteria. If, as we suspect, the measures were purely political, we will do everything in our power to make this right.NASA administrator Charles Bolden has some explaining to do.
This was taken at a press conference held by D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray regarding his opposition to Congress's re-authorization of DC's school voucher program. The reporter is the Washington Times’ Kerry Pickett.
There is, to begin with, the notion of racial identity. Your garden-variety bigot is apt to argue that the differences between the races are not superficial but quite profound. He is apt to tell you each race possesses its own essential nature, its own culture and mores, and that for this reason it is best if each sticks to its own kind.Read it all.
Some would call that backward. Others would call it progressive. Put a happy-face on the same sentiments and you have something like Somerville Place, a blacks-only residential floor at the University of Southern California. Says USC, "The goals of Somerville Place aim to foster an understanding of and respect for Black culture." Ahh, that. The bigot and USC might differ on whether black culture should be respected, but they agree it exists. Interesting.
E. J. Dionne - still stupid after all these years.
Quite a difference in a bit less than two weeks.
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Her blog is here.
Read the whole thing.
More than half of House Democrats are seizing on news that Standard and Poor's could downgrade the United States' bond rating to make the argument that Republicans need to raise the debt limit without tying it to additional spending restraint.I would argue that the fact that the debt ceiling needs to be raised is proof that America does not pay its bills. Hence the need, not for strings, but for high tensile strength steel cables.
"America pays its bills," said Rep. Peter Welch, (D-VT).
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
I don’t think so. Moreover, I suspect that the Ryan plan might garner even more support from seniors like me if we were allowed to “buy into” his plan early - maybe as part of a 10-year “grand experiment.”
MORE: Why bother with the expense of a Ph.D. when you can buy one for a thousand bucks?
The United States Supreme Court Justices met last Friday to discuss whether or not to grant Virginia's request to expedite our healthcare case directly to the Supreme Court - thereby bypassing the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals.If we’re lucky ....
Virginia, along with many other states and companies, has been left with great uncertainty regarding the healthcare bill. Virginia alone is spending millions of dollars preparing to implement the bill - despite the fact that if Virginia's legal challenge succeeds, the bill may well be stricken before it is ever fully implemented.
The Supreme Court did not make an announcement today on whether or not it was going to expedite the case. Instead, they relisted the case on their docket for this Friday, April 22nd.
What does that mean?
It means that they haven't rejected our request - yet. Remember, requests to expedite are infrequently granted. However, it also probably means that one or more of the Justices want more time to consider the question.
It also means that there appears at least to be interest in the petition at the court, which is itself encouraging. If my numbers are right, over 90% of petitions addressed in these conferences are summarily rejected because no Justice has any interest in them. So, the fact that the Justices didn't summarily dismiss our petition is itself interesting and at least modestly encouraging (hopefully not in the vein of what your mother told you growing up: "the worst thing they can do is ignore you"... of course, my mother has never filed a petition with the Supreme Court).
Generally speaking, we would expect an opinion issued Monday the 25th; however, it is Easter weekend, so I don't know if that will have an impact on timing, but I'll let you know as soon as we find out!
Commenter Russ G. says it all: “The biggest problem with modern liberalism, I think, is its certainty that it holds a monopoly on truth and virtue. It’s a lot like many forms of Christianity in previous centuries, and like much of Islam today. If you are the one virtuous population in a sea of evil-doers, it is very easy to justify ignoring rules of courtesy. This is evil you are fighting, after all.”
Monday, April 18, 2011
Linked from Instapundit.
"Using innovative receptor technologies and one of the world's most powerful supercomputers, the SKA will probe the origins of the universe. However the spin off technologies will have applications closer to home such as mega-data management, very low-power Radio Frequency devices, and 'system of systems' control software."
I suspect the ‘close-to-home’ applications will be far more significant than currently imagined.
More on the silliness here.
Sunday, April 17, 2011
Little wonder the Democrats are not in favor of spanking little children.
(budget cuts) “[T]hat’s like a 600 pound man who’s heart is about to explode congratulating himself that he got a hamburger instead of a cheeseburger… for his fifty-seventh meal of the day.”Read the whole thing and scan through the comments. Linked from Instapundit.
(Social Security trust fund) “[E]xpecting congress to save money is like expecting crack whores to save crack.”
(ethanol) “I went from 35 to 27 mpg when they started adding corn and rainbows to my gas.”
I guess an Ivy League education doesn’t include the knowledge that the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is crude oil, not gasoline, stored underground in huge salt domes along the Gulf coast.
The guy gives “dumb” a bad name.
If Sarah Palin’s not running for president, what a terrible waste that would be of the single best stump speech I’ve heard since, well, Palin’s ’08 convention speech, which just happened to be the single most electrifying political moment of my adult life. … On this day, Tea Party tax-day, Sarah Palin walked into the heart of this nation’s battle, stared down a gallery of Leftist union goons with poise and grace, and articulated our message as well as anyone ever could. Let’s hope this is just the beginning.I came, I saw, I conquered.
Saturday, April 16, 2011
And here it is about three cuts later as the crown is about to be removed.
It started raining shortly after this photo was taken or the tree would be firewood by now.
I think we’re seeing two things going on here. First, NATO is not willing to step up to the plate in the absence of U.S. leadership. a result of too many years of letting the U.S. be the world’s policeman. And, second, that the Obama administration has no principles whatever.
I wondered if it would be possible to explain the many contradictions of Obama and the mystery of his origins and incomprehensible nature of his domestic and foreign policies to better understand him and predict why he seems to be steering the ship of state onto the shoals. I think I've finally got it .... Barack is not one person. The man we know as Barack Obama is really two people, identical twins.It’s an interesting read, but not original. There was a short story, I believe in a 1960’s-ish issue of Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact, based on exactly the same premise. A “Kennedy-like” patriarch raises multiple identical siblings to be the eventual president of the United States. Each sibling was educated specifically for one aspect of the presidency (foreign policy, domestic policy, campaign policy, etc.) and one was chosen to be the face of the President while the others remained hidden.
The difference with Feldman’s hypothesis is that, in the story, the multiple siblings were competent.
The debate over cutting federal spending has so far concentrated on shrinking the size of the federal government, not necessarily its scope. Even if Republicans prevail in cutting some spending and reforming entitlements, the federal government will still be involved in a wide swath of American life. There really hasn’t been a serious discussion (outside of votes on funding for NPR and Planned Parenthood) of shrinking the breadth of governmental spending, activity, and involvement. Continued failure to do so would be a serious substantive and strategic error. Merely reducing spending in certain areas while leaving the departments, agencies, and programs intact ensures that those departments, agencies, and programs will soon resume growing and even metastasizing. It’s the Washington way.I love the use of the term 'metasticize.' Government is a cancer on the body politic. It’s time to start excising the cancer.
I’d like to commend President Obama for his backhanded honesty on this, though. He has finally admitted that he thinks the money that you work for belongs to the government before it belongs to you. He just had to utter the most Orwellian phrase ever spoken by an American president to get the admission out there.You're just a temporary custodian.
Friday, April 15, 2011
[I]it now appears that the new Republican majority has done what it attacked Democrats for doing when they controlled the House. They negotiated a back room deal, didn't release the details until 2 a.m., and the more we have of the details, the more we find out that the actual deal is filled with accounting gimmicks. Not a good way to earn back the trust of conservatives ...."Trust, but verify" needs less trust and more verify.
From the left: "the man America elected president has re-emerged."
From the center left: "kicking the can down the road ... is not leadership."
From the center: "pitiful."
From the center right: "was he serious?"
From the right: "rather than building bridges, he's poisoning wells."
Sometimes it’s better – politically and morally – to have decentralized decisions, made by doctors and patients on all sorts of varied grounds. Even if it looks irrational, it will respect both life and individual autonomy (and the equality thereof).The quote appears to put me in the “treatment” category, but I’m rather of the category that believes the decision is best left to those most intimately involved - the patient, family, and those they deem necessary for support.
Thursday, April 14, 2011
The far-right ideologues in the House seek to starve the federal government to the point where it can no longer fulfill its constitutional duty to promote the general welfare.And with that simple statement, Robinson finally comes close - no cigar, but close - to understanding the Tea Party objections to the tenets of progressivism. Those "far-right ideologues" - myself included - simply don't believe that promoting the general welfare includes controlling the most minute details of every individual's life.
If politicians in Washington spend too much and cause more red ink, which happens on a routine basis, Obama wants a provision that automatically would raise taxes on the American people.Politicians play, taxpayers pay.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
(April 13) You like your drama with popcorn. As for the real-life show that’s going on, you didn’t buy a ticket, so you don’t have to watch ....So am I.
I don’t want the government doing everything for me, I just mostly want it out of the way. I don’t want a president who’s sensitive, I want a president who will defend our country and not go around apologizing for it. I want a president who understands federalism, not one who attacks states for trying to uphold the rule of law. I want a president who understands economics in the real world, not just in the halls of academia. I want a president who has held down a real job, who has met a payroll, and who has achieved something on his own or met failure trying. I want a president who loves liberty, not one who is constantly finding ways to curb liberty. I want a president who appreciates our allies and stares down our enemies, and doesn’t hug our enemies and alienate our allies. I want a president I can trust, and I don’t trust Barack Obama at all, on any issue. I don’t trust his judgment or his instincts or his intentions.Well said.
Remember how the health-care bill was about "standing up to the special interests" and the lobbyists? Tell that to Democrat Bart Stupak, perhaps the single most important rank-and-file House member in passing the bill, who just got a fat new gig on K Street.Enough said.
Uh, no, it's not real. The idea came while waiting for today's deficit speech and perusing the comments here.
Foreign Policy magazine tends to be a liberal domain, so there’s lots to quibble about in the first 8 items, but they generally come off as reasonably thoughtful. But the ninth? The best that can be said is that Michael Lind, of the New America Foundation, has come unglued. Here is his contribution (in italics):
[T]the federal government is too small, not too large, and should be expanded. At the price of inefficiency, things which could be done more simply and efficiently by the federal government have been delegated to the states or subsidized private corporations.Name one thing - just one - that the federal government has ever done more simply or efficiently.
For example, hybrid federal-state programs like Medicaid and unemployment insurance are threatened by unstable state revenues, unlike purely federal programs like Social Security.Uh, Social Security is stable? Only Harry Reid doesn't recognize it is destined for eventual bankruptcy.
Tax-favored private retirement savings programs like IRAs and 401k's are riskier than Social Security and allow brokers to fleece unsuspecting clients with their fees. These programs should be shrunk and Social Security should be expanded.Not so. My social security check is not nearly as big as it could have been had I been allowed to invest privately what I paid in FICA taxes.
Medical cost inflation threatens both the efficient Medicare program and the dysfunctional, employer-based health insurance sector.Employer-based health “care” is dysfunctional because of government interference, not in spite of it.
The solution is cost controls, not rationing access to health care by Americans.Wrong again. Cost control is a means of rationing access.
In a rational country, the federal government would take over functions that never should have been shared with the states or off-loaded onto the private sector.Only if “rational” and “insane” are synonyms.
Higher federal taxes would be offset somewhat by lower state taxes and the abolition of tax subsidies for private insurance and private retirement savings.It’s sufficient to just say “higher federal taxes.”
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
CALM. Not a single visual of chest-beating or wild grief. Sorrow itself has been elevated.Better us to learn from them than them to learn from us.
DIGNITY. Disciplined queues for water and groceries. Not a rough word or a crude gesture. Their patience is admirable and praiseworthy.
ABILITY. The incredible architects, for instance. Buildings swayed but didn't fall.
GRACE. (Selflessness) People bought only what they needed for the present, so everybody could get something.
ORDER. No looting in shops. No honking and no overtaking on the roads. Just understanding.
SACRIFICE. Fifty workers stayed back to pump sea water in the N-reactors. How will they ever be repaid?
TENDERNESS. Restaurants cut prices. An unguarded ATM is left alone. The strong cared for the weak.
TRAINING. The old and the children, everyone knew exactly what to do. And they did just that.
MEDIA. They showed magnificent restraint in the bulletins. No silly reporters. Only calm reportage. Most of all - NO POLITICIANS TRYING TO GET CHEAP MILEAGE.
CONSCIENCE. When the power went off in a store, people put things back on the shelves and left quietly.
Unless you’re a Democrat (and then you won’t listen).
My sentiments as well.
Oh, to be young - and dream - again.
Monday, April 11, 2011
Saturday, April 09, 2011
Friday, April 08, 2011
Republicans have two powerful pulls on them: the business lobby and the Tea Party. One has money. The other has votes. Boehner might have to choose between the two.
Go with the votes. The other will follow.
Read it all.
Instapundit would be ‘very surprised’ if they were that smart. I think they’re probably smart enough, but I’d be surprised to find they actually had the cojones to do it.
It's going to be a long weekend ....
Thursday, April 07, 2011
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
UPDATE: the media tried to scrub the story; they didn’t quite succeed.
[T]hink of government workers like teenagers. You pay them an allowance, but do you get any work out them? They eat the food, put their feet on the furniture and complain loudly whenever they are unhappy.Read it all.
The idea here is that today’s old people—a very white group that’s also hostile to gay rights, and thus sort of predisposed to like conservative politicians—will also get to benefit from an extremely generous single-payer health care system. But younger people—a less white group that’s friendly to gay rights and thus predisposed to skepticism about conservative politicians—will get to pay the high taxes to finance old people’s generous single-payer health care system, but then we won’t get to benefit from it. This is in part in order to clear headroom in the budget so as to make gigantic tax cuts for rich people affordable.Yglesias' youth and inexperience show. Plans for reforming entitlements exempt those at or near retirement because "older Americans have built their lives around the existing system and don't have the opportunity to adjust to changes, whereas younger workers do." I would add that they will also not live to benefit from the improvements either.
Well, I could stand to lose a few pounds.
Tuesday, April 05, 2011
Journalists kant spel gud....