Crazy Little Guy

this is just damn cool - it is autonomous, so it is making this decisions itself (not that anyone could really do that with a remote control anyway), obviously mostly important to the military more than civilian use. An army of these for urban scouts, big dogs for supply, MQ-9 Reapers in the air, and autonomous DARPA style tanks, trucks, and ... yeah... its coming..

Solyndra, Obama, and Loans

What people may or may not know is that Obama wants to reshape the American economy into something more eco-friendly.

His preferred way of doing this, shockingly, is spending lots of money. Specifically giving out loan guarantees to companies that have absolutely no right to the quantity of government money being thrown at them.

I have railed on before about Fisker Automotive and Tesla - two electric car start-ups which were both given over $500 million loans which we will likely never see back.

But this might be worse.

In the growing area of thin-film solar (basically next generation photovoltaics) there are a number of companies, First Solar being the biggest. However, the Obama administration (and it really is directly the administration - one of Obama's friends is the Czar in charge of assigning these loans) decided that Solyndra needed $535 million.


On Wednesday morning Obama took a tour around the factory, and all the TV outlets talked about how the factory was a model for the future of American industry and what a modern environmental facility could look like. But, and interestingly enough it was a green tech blog that wrote about this first, the whole thing is probably going to fail. Solyndra has probably the highest manufacturing costs of any thin film solar company, about $4/watt, as opposed to under $1/watt for the industry leaders. It also already has $500 million in debt. It needs the DOE money just to stay solvent, let alone grow in the big healthy new American economy Obama wants it to. According to Morgan Stanley, the most likely outcome is complete collapse of the company.

It just goes to show the special breed of idiot that is running this country right now. They are throwing around taxpayer dollars like Monopoly money and they have no goddamn idea what they are doing.

The Great Imposters: 10 Cars that Are Not What They Seem

Most cars are pretty much what they seem. You do your research, you talk to the sales guy, you talk to your friends, you watch your car commercials and you decide what you want to buy. In the end, you probably end up with what you wanted to end up with buying a new car. But sometimes, things are not as they seem.

You see, people tend to think about cars in terms of model years and features. And that's all that dealers talk about: "Oh yes, this is the new for 2010 Camcord, it comes with the V6 and performance package" etc etc. But its not how car companies think about cars. They think in terms of two big things: platforms and generations.

A platform is the basic underpinning of the car. They are generally shared between different cars, especially these days. An all-new platform is a huge investment (up to hundreds of millions of dollars) and so does not come around all that often. Cars and platforms go through generations. Often a new platform comes out, and then over a couple years all of the models are migrated over to it.

What I will show you here is a car which looks like one thing, but is really something else. Some of them may be obvious, but I hope some at least are not:

1) Bentley Continental
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2010/Bentley/2010.bentley.continental%20gtc%20speed.20278331-396x249.jpg
Ahh the conti, one of the most popular super luxury cars of the last 5 years. Its beautiful, it drives well, its a great car all around.

But what is it really? This:
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2006/Volkswagen/100616729/2006.volkswagen.phaeton.20027394-396x249.jpg
Yeah. Not quite as sexy now huh? Its not the Passat, though you would be forgiven for thinking that. It is actually the VW Phaeton, the ill-fated attempt by the German makers of the people's car to build a luxury automobile. It is a $60,000 car, while the Conti sells for $150,000. What did they change? Well - they dropped in a more powerful engine.. and thats it. Other than of course the sheetmetal and the big "B" on the bonnet. You see, VW owns Bentley, had a lot of spare capacity in the plant from the slow selling Phaeton, and had bought the Bentley name without any cars to build other than the ancient and huge Arnage... out of that little perfect storm, some bright spark said "lets make a Bently out of the Phaeton" and it went on to sell 5,000 units a year the first few years... at almost three times the price of its not-quite-identical twin.

2) Jaguar X-Type
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2002/Jaguar/100002267/2002.jaguar.xtype.5773-300x189.jpg

This is one of my most hated cars of all time. It might be my most hated car of all time. I really gooddamn hate this car. A lot. One time some kid offered to trade me his X-Type for my Audi S4. That would be like offering to trade me Bernie Madoff for Warren Buffet. Screw off. And why do I hate this thing so much? Because what it really is, is this:

http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2000/Ford/8336/2000.ford.contour.3733-396x249.jpg

Yes - the Ford Contour. Seriously. You can even see the resemblance.. which is ummm... sad. Before this, Jaguar was a luxury brand. Hell, the S-Type was a move 'down' and it sold for $45,000. This is like buying your Louis Vuitton purse on eBay - lets face it, we all know its not the real deal.

3) Infiniti G20
http://www.edmunds.com/media/editorial/letterstotheeditors/01.infiniti.g20lux.350.jpg

Ahh the G20 - sold in the early to mid-90's by Nissan's then young luxury brand Infiniti. Which was trying to build up its image and reputation. But it was obviously really just this POS:
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/1994/Nissan/12526/1994.nissan.sentra.8194-300x189.jpg
Mmm... sexy.. or no, no wait. Its hideously ugly. And a terrible car. Look at those fog lights. They look like the aftermarket ones high school kids buy from walmart to sport up their ride - usually found not working and hanging down sideways.

4) Lexus ES350
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2010/Lexus/2010.lexus.es%20350.20309243-300x189.jpg

Toyota has done a good job with this one for years - selling these things (ES300/330/350) as luxury cars when all they really are are trim levels for...
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2011/Toyota/2011.toyota.camry.20330104-396x249.jpg
The Most Boring Car In The World. Well - unless the floor mat slips forward and you are too stupid to either slide the floor mat back or put the car in neutral. But yeah - to anyone who owns an ES350 - you own a Camry. Its a nice Camry - but lets not lie, its really just a Camry. 15 million other people in America have one too.

5) Hummer H2
http://www.edmunds.com/media/advice/youngdrivers/cars.super.sweet.16.birthday.gift/2007.hummer.h2.500.jpg

Yeah - we all know the story here. Hummer was bought by GM as a civilian brand, rode the wave of patriotism and cheap credit, and the went bust hard along with supersized McDee's meals and political cooperation. The silly thing is that all it is, underneath it all, is one of these:
http://www.edmunds.com/media/reviews/top10/towing.vehicles/04.chevrolet.suburban.500.jpg

They made it boxier, put on some big tires and a bunch of offroading bits no one who drives an H2 has ever used, or even figured out how to turn on, and called it a day. So really, you are buying a boxy suburban.. which means you should have just bought my truck instead:
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/1997/Chevrolet/17322/1997.chevrolet.tahoe.1925-300x189.jpg

6) Scion Tc
http://www.edmunds.com/media/reviews/top10/09.top10.most.expensive.hatchbacks.to.insure/09.scion.tc.500.jpg
You normally see these driven around with lots of go-faster bits and some kid with his hat on backwards. Its a sporty car, sold by an edgy youthful brand, it shows just how cool and badass a backwards-hat-wearer you are. But really, this one is an impostor in every way. It is not edgy, it is not powerful (160hp v4) and it is not a sports car. It is one of these:
http://www.carpages.co.uk/toyota/toyota_images/toyota_avensis_07_08_04.jpg
The Toyota Avensis. The midsized sedan not sold in the US which splits the difference between the Camry and the Corolla. To make the Tc they just got rid of the rear doors, smoothed out the styling and added an option for a 500watt stereo system. Its is about as exciting, interesting, and sporty as my toenail clippings.

7) First Generation Audi TT
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2000/Audi/8786/2000.audi.tt.368-300x189.jpg
This is the car which sparked this post. The first-gen TT is a beautiful car, it really is. The interior as well is an all time classic. It is a beautiful thing, a work of art, and an iconic car.

What is isn't is a sports car, or an Audi. Its this:
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2000/Volkswagen/14664/2000.volkswagen.gti.10710-300x189.jpg

Yup, its a Golf. Specifically a Golf GTI. Its not a "sports car" at all. Its a relatively inexpensive hot-hatch dressed up in some of the most gorgeous duds ever made. You see to save money on what was going to be a niche car - Audi never bothered developing the TT in any real way. They just drew some beautiful sheetmetal, made a great interior, dropped it on top of an unsuspecting Golf and called it a day. Eventually, when people complained that their $35,000 Golf was really a $20,000 Golf, Audi offered a more powerful engine, as an option you could pay more for. But it was not until the new generation (which really is a bona fide sports car) that they did anything substantial.

8) Porsche Cayenne
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2004/Porsche/100379981/2004.porsche.cayenne.28899-300x189.jpg

Keeping with the same theme... we have here the best selling luxury SUV of the last 10 years. Actually, that's a lie. Its the best selling SUV, to idiots. Among idiots, it has been incredibly popular. Specifically rich idiots, and semi-rich ones. Because, again, this is not a Porsche..
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2008/Volkswagen/2008.volkswagen.touareg%202.20224986-300x189.jpg
Its a Touareg. From VW again. But let me tell you some other interesting things. The base Cayenne literally is a Touareg - they changed nothing, absolutely nothing, except the sheetmetal and the badges. That's it. On top of that, the Cayenne is more expensive on average by about $5,000 for the same options. And the Cayenne has outsold the Touareg 2-1 since they were introduced. Last, but certainly not least, you are not even necessarily a rich idiot if you buy one, because the base Cayenne is the cheapest Porsche you can buy, even though it is a honking big SUV rather than a little coupe. Because it isn't a Porsche, its a VW. On top of which, it has the same power to weight ratio as my '96 Chevy Tahoe. Which is.. er.. sad.

If you own one of these (not the GTS or Turbo, the base one) please just don't talk about it. You look dumb when you say you paid $5,000 to put Porsche badges on your VW.

9) Devon GTX and a bunch of others
http://www.estihirlap.hu/cikkepek/auto-2/devon_gtx_3.jpg
The Devon is just one example of what has become a full-blown epidemic: taking the Corvette (Z06/ZR1) or the Dodge Viper and making limited edition 'supercars' out of them. You see the current Viper and Vette are good enough to run with the big boys - they just dont have the badge and to some degree, the looks. Realizing that most rich people buying a sports car are really doing it to try and get their Au Pair to sleep with them, often no one even bothers to upgradge the performance of the car, they just triple or sextuple the price. But while they are often great cars, they are really just one of these.
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2009/Chevrolet/2009.chevrolet.corvette.20234300-300x189.jpg
http://www.edmunds.com/media/reviews/top10/09.top10.most.expensive.coupes.to.insure/09.dodge.viper.coupe.500.jpg

Now I love both these cars - but if you want one just buy it. Hell, it probably even comes with a warranty from the US Government.

10) Dodge Charger
http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/VEHICLE/2010/Dodge/2010.dodge.challenger.20307434-300x189.jpg
Ah the Challenger. Its big, its bold, it has the widest ass of any car on sale today.
http://blog.niot.net/blog-images/chicago-08-preview-another-2008-dodge-challenger-srt8-leaks-ou.jpg

But there are two things it very much is not. 1) Any kind of sports car. 2) A Dodge. Or even American for that matter.

You see, what is underneath the Challenger, and why it has consistently finished a very very weak third behind the new Mustang and Camaro in comparison tests, is this:
File:Mercedes-Benz E-Class W210.jpg

The 1995-2002 Mercedes E-Class. Yes. Seriously. Not fucking kidding. That's what they made the Dodge Challenger out of. Literally. Barely changed anything. Mercedes bought Chrysler, Chrysler had no money and shitty platforms, Mercedes gave Chrysler their old platforms to use after they were done with them. So what you are getting when you buy a Challenger is not an American muscle car, you are getting 15 year old warmed up German leftovers. MMmm old kraut..

Vertical Rise and the real "tallest" mountain on earth

Ok, so this is a status message from a guy - kind of a tool - that I know:

"I own zero winter gear... yet three days before a 19,000 foot climb in Peru I end up with $500 worth. I love my friends (special props to Macasek for letting me borrow... everything).
"

Well now, if you climbed 19,000 feet from any point on earth, you would end up... in the sky. (not counting many week treks here - I am talking about from the base of the mountain up).

You see the thing is we talk about mountains in terms of total elevation. Climbing a 14er in Colorado is much more impressive than climbing anything the old, worn down, Appalachians. But Katahdin has a vertical rise of 4,292 feet - more than many of those 14ers. Scafell Pike, the tallest mountain in England, rises to only 3,200ft, but 3,000 of that is vertical rise. Its one of the best hikes I have done, and the Lake District of England (where you would find it) is one of the most beautiful and rugged mountain regions on earth.

You see - how "big" a mountain is really counts from ground-level. Its the rise from that ground level to the top of the mountain.

In this way, Everest is really about 12,000ft "tall" - which is still a hell of a lot... but nowhere near the largest vertical rise of any mountain. To the best of my knowledge (and I am pretty sure on this one), that honor actually goes to Mount McKinley in Alaska, which has a vertical rise of 18,000ft (which is why climbing 19k feet from anywhere would be tricky).

Interestingly enough, McKinley is really the "largest"mountain in the world, it is both taller than Everest in terms of vertical rise (by about 50%, no small margin of victory) and it is much more massive by weight - though I could find no definitive numbers on that.

However, there is a reason we still revere Everest for its height - it makes it incredibly difficult to climb. McKinley rises 18,000 feet, but you only end up at 20,300 feet. Which is high.. but not that bad for the human body. We can actually adapt to going that high. What we cant do, regardless of anything (even being a Sherpa) is adapt to anything over 24,000 feet - or 8,000m - which is why mountains that tall are so special. Every time you are above 24,000ft (not counting pressurized airplane rides) you are slowly, or not so slowly, dying. You can't stay up there for long, the weather can verge on satanic, and rescue or aid is very limited.

So, I love Everest and hope to go there one day (though I would much rather climb a number of other peaks), but McKinley deserves a little honor - and stop bashing short mountains or claiming you are going to climb 19,000ft.

BP Blew It

So.. turns out that BP ignored all kinds of signs that their well was about to pull a mentos-in-the-soda-bottle. It does seem as though this was a very much preventable accident, and something which could have easily been avoided.

Why BP? Why?

I support the oil industry. For gods sake I work in the oil industry. This is just stupid. BP had worked so hard for the last 5 years trying to fix "big oil's" reputation, and try and make BP a cleaner more environmentally friendly company.

And then with a lack of intelligence and a string of bad decisions, not only is that corporate image blown to hell, there is even more widespread hatred of the oil companies. Deservedly.

Of course, what this will lead to is more government regulation and less offshore drilling, which is in fact a bad thing (though I will say that this spill pisses me off - we do need offshore drilling in this country).

Maybe they should just pull a Comcast and rename themselves, to something like Xplosiv... no no.. that would not work.. how about.. Xtremelysorry... that might help.

Transformers 3 Replaces Megan Fox with A Victorias Secret Model - promises better acting

It could in fact happen... but I am betting on a steaming pile of crap for the third (and hopefully last?) installment of the series. Like the Matrix and Pirates of the Caribbean I am going to go ahead and call this one pretty much a write-off.

What you have is the same Michael Bay, the same Shia LeBouf, and a new girl. Because Meagan Fox has spent too much of the last few years calling Michael Bay nasty names and a creepy dude (I think that much is a given) she got booted from the movie.

To replace her obvious acting talent (cough cough) they replaced her with a Victorias Secret model who.... has never acted before. Ever. At anything.

Yeah... its going to be terrible. Which is really too bad, given how good the first one was. Tragedy really.

Ok back to the real news..

National Review Article: Sticking to the Script

This is the article which prompted my post on Islam, well worth the read:

Jonah Goldberg

divider

Sticking to the Script
Liberals crave a comfortable plot, and they’ll alter the facts of a story to make it fit one.

We are taught to believe that ideology is the enemy of free thought. But that’s not right. Ideology is a mere checklist of principles and priorities. The real enemy of clear thinking is the script. We think the world is supposed to go by a familiar plot. And when the facts conflict with the script, we edit the facts.

So, for instance, David Horowitz is a stock villain on U.S. campuses because he deviates from the standard formula of coddling the usual victims and lionizing the usual heroes. Once a committed left-wing radical, Horowitz now resides on the right. Two of his favorite targets are academia and radical Islam. He leads an extensive network of websites, books, lecture series, pamphlets, and conferences aimed at exposing the folly and dangers of both. Horowitz’s detractors, and even some of his friends, sometimes roll their eyes at his confrontational tactics and rhetoric.

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But that doesn’t mean he’s wrong. Horowitz recently spoke at the University of California, San Diego. You can find an excerpt from his appearance on YouTube (and here). In it, a young Muslim student from UCSD, Jumanah Imad Albahri, asks Horowitz to back up his attacks on the Muslim Students Association. Horowitz turns the tables on her. In less than two minutes, she reveals herself as a supporter of the terrorist group Hamas. Horowitz then notes that Hezbollah, another terrorist organization, wants all Jews to return to Israel so they can be more conveniently liquidated in one place. Horowitz asks Albahri whether she’s for or against that proposition. She is “for it.”

I asked UCSD, via e-mail, whether the woman in question was censured in any way for endorsing bigotry and genocide, or if the video was somehow misleading. In response, I received boilerplate about how, in the tradition of Aristotle, UCSD treasures “discourse and debate” and how “the very foundations of every great university are set upon the rock-solid principles of freedom of thought and freedom of speech.”

I wrote back, in part: “Thank you for your response. I must say I find it fairly non-responsive. Out of curiosity, if a UCSD student publicly called for the extermination of gays and blacks, would this be your only response as well?”

I then received an even less responsive primer on how student groups are funded on campus.

Now, I could write at length about UCSD’s hypocrisy. After all, the school recently launched a “Battle Hate” campaign in response to some idiotic stunt called the “Compton Cookout” at which a fraternity held a racially offensive event off campus during Black History Month. Administrators went into overdrive, the Black Student Union issued 32 demands, the vice chancellor righteously explained to students that although the event may have been beyond the school’s “legal jurisdiction,” it was not beyond UCSD’s “moral jurisdiction.”

“We have the moral high ground!” the vice chancellor shouted before trying to start a chant of “Not in our community!”

Well, Albahri’s statements were not only within the UCSD community, they were well inside the school’s legal and moral jurisdiction. And yet in response, we don’t get the familiar kabuki of official outrage. Instead we get: This endorsement of genocide is brought to you by Aristotle.

The important point here isn’t the school’s double standard. It’s that on campuses and in the wider intellectual culture, people can’t let go of their dog-eared script. It’s not that conventional racism is no longer a problem, nor is it that the civil-rights era no longer resonates. But freaking out over the vestiges of familiar racism is firmly within the comfort zone of contemporary liberalism. Indeed, it’s an industry. Yet when it comes to students like Albahri — and there are many like her — administrators become brainless and lost. Lacking an adequate script, they resort to bromides about Aristotle.

Off campus, liberals crave a comfortable plot in which bigoted “homegrown” white men are the villains while Muslims are scapegoats. New York mayor Michael Bloomberg was willing to bet that the Times Square bomber might turn out to be an opponent of health-care reform.

What’s the right script? Honestly, I don’t know. But those perched atop the moral high ground will have to climb down to find the facts before they can write it.

Jonah Goldberg is editor-at-large of National Review Online and a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. © 2010 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

We oppose all racism and bigotry and sexism, except Islam

The current favorable and Hollywood-acceptable logic (why the hell anyone would think that celebrities were people to guide public discourse I have no damn idea - most of them are not exactly flying a full set of sails) is that the western world is at fault in our relations with Islam. In addition to this, Islam is a misunderstood religion that is characterized as aggressive and intolerant by the right-wing etc, but those more intellectually enlightened know that Islam is simply a different and equal way of viewing the world. Morally speaking, we are the aggressive and intolerant ones, invading their lands, interfering with their affairs, and trying to manipulate the middle east in particular in our unending crack-addict need for oil.

Of course if you look a little more closely, or really, look at all, this is a load of bullshit. First of all, morality is not relative. It is not acceptable that women are treated as property under Islamic law - no matter what their book says or what they have been doing for the last 600 years.

If I said slavery should not have been abolished and is a valid, traditional practice supported by the Bible, I would be quite rightly accused of racism and prejudice, and would face censure from the public at large and whatever institutions I was affiliated with.

But hold on, what does the bible say about slavery?

Exodus 21:20-21
"When a man strikes his slave, male or female, and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be punished; for the slave is his property."

So according to the bible, not only is it acceptable to own slaves, it is acceptable to beat them to death, as long as they die a long, slow, agonizing death from wounds or internal bleeding, rather than dying on the spot. That's straight out of your bible folks. I can't imagine they spend too much time on that one in Sunday school.

The thing is, we all understand that in this case it is wrong. Modern Christians simply ignore a lot of the crap in the bible, because it is just that, crap. There is no valid moral relativist standpoint here saying that its ok because of culture, tradition, a funny little book etc.

But when it comes to Islam, that's exactly what we do. We accept their degradation of women because its part of their tradition, and their book says that's the way things are. If you do surveys, most Islamic women say they accept the tradition, and this is used to validate it and prove that those criticizing Islam simply don't understand. And yet if you did a survey of slaves on plantations in the 1700's, I wonder just how many would speak out against the institution. 1%? 2%?

And it really is just Islam that gets this treatment. We oppose female genital mutilation in Africa, thought it is also a long-standing tradition tied to their religion. But we don't really talk about the fact that it is prevalent in Islamic countries as well - in the Iraqi village of Hasira, a recent study found that 60 percent of the women and girls reported having undergone female genital mutilation.

The absolute hypocrisy of "liberals" being apologists for Islam astounds me. It is a racist, sexist, intolerant, and aggressive religion. That's not "my opinion" - that's what it is. It is not "my opinion" that Hitler was not a good person, that Stalin killed millions or that the 100 years war, slavery, and the inquisition were immoral.

Which leads me to my final point. Yes, in the past, Christianity was an aggressive, intolerant, racist and sexist religion. And to some extent, it is still all of those. But the vast majority of Christians and christian churches have become moderate, at least on a relative scale. Deeply indoctrinated Christians really piss me off, but mostly they oppose gay rights, abortion, pre-marital sex, and abstract science. They are obnoxious, intolerant, and frequently make me want to hammer them over the head with a copy of "On the Origin of Species" printed on lead tablets. In comparison, mainstream Islam believes in religious wars, women as property or second-rate citizens, and the eradication or at least expulsion of the Jewish race.

Just because the western world has "been there, done that" does not mean we should accept these things today.

Traffic Fines: Revenue Rather than Safety

There is a big difference between driving fast, and driving safely. Many slow drivers are exceedingly unsafe - they make decisions randomly, stay in the wrong lanes, don't pay close attention to their driving, and generally approach driving as a rather distasteful activity foisted on them by the necessities of life.

They are also usually the people who think that driving fast is driving badly, and complain about fast drivers all the time. Possibly at the same time as they rear-end someone in stop and go traffic, sit in the left lane while getting passed on the right (you should only be getting passed on the right under extenuating circumstances - you see a car faster than you in your passenger window, you are in the wrong lane my friend), or almost cause multiple accidents at an on-ramp or merge because their general approach is to go slow and hope for the best (its just too scary to look or use the accelerator - and unsafe). Overwhelmingly, they think of themselves as safe drivers, but likely have crashed a few cars and caused or contributed to multiple accidents.

These people seem to dominate state politics. Or really, they seem to dominate the earth. It is why traffic violations in this country are geared towards pulling over people going fast, regardless of safety. A slow driver doing 55mph in the left lane (or one I came across just two nights ago - 45mph in the middle lane) is an incredibly unsafe driver and often causes all kinds of dangerous lane-changes, undertaking, and tailgating. But they would never, in 100 years, get a ticket in this country. This country just sees dollar signs when you talk of road safety. Which is why recently, all across the nation, fines have been increased.

Check out the list over at car and driver.

There is only one change on that list I can support, and support fully. But it does not come from the US:
GERMANY
Infraction: Staying in the left lane of the autobahn when the right lane is free
Previous fine: 40 euros (about $54)
New fine: 80 euros (about $108)
Date of increase: 2009
Rationale: Improve road safety. “Up to now, the fines in Germany were rather low compared with other European countries,” says Lt. Col. Lon Walker, the OPM’s (U.S. Army Europe Office of the Provost Marshal) chief of law-enforcement operations.

YES PLEASE!!!! WE NEED THIS MORE THAN ANYTHING. Holy shit American drivers are bad about this. Get the hell out of the left lane if you are not passing anything. And if someone comes up behind you going faster than you are, get out of the way. I have actually had someone recently tell me they do this on purpose, because they are going as fast as you should be going on the road (shockingly, the person in question's opinion of herself would be described in British understatement as "inflated"). This opinion seems tied into the distortion of the American Dream that when Americans realize they are not really going anywhere in their lives, the dream turns into bitter frustration and anger at those who are. Hence also the American duality of hating the successful and obsession with being successful.

GM wants more suprime buyers, and wants to do its own lending

Yup. GM wants to buy back the auto-lending branch of Ally Bank - which used to be GMAC. This would let GM dealers offer financing again and feel all grown up. It turns out that subprime buyers are 16% of the new car market.

You see the thing is, sub-prime buyers should never, ever, be financing a new car purchase. It does not make a damn bit of sense. Buy a reliable cheap used car and call it good. Honestly - you can get an older Toyota or Honda or especially SUV for $2-$5k, wtf are you doing buying a new car? That is unless you are paying cash.

Back in the good 'ol days when American car companies were not owned by the government, but made crap cars (actually - Chrysler still makes crap cars, the big irony is that it was right when GM finally started making great cars that it went under), the US car companies lost money on every car they sold... sorta.

You see, they lost money on the car (they made money selling SUVs, but not cars), but they made money on the financing. Financing lets you make back a lot, especially financing subprime buyers with high rates (again - wtf are you people doing buying new cars?).

Now GM wants back in, so that it can sell Chevy Camaro's with $450/mo payments. Hell, I would too if I were GM. I'm just amazed that such a large percentage of the new car market is subprime - maybe you should be thinking about those credit card payments first?

Worlds Largest Picture

I remember a few years ago when a DIY guy took a 1960's satellite spy camera and re-purposed it to take pictures here on earth, taking the then highest-resolution pictures.

Now, a company called gigapan makes a relatively cheap mount for your dSLR or compact camera and automatically takes a range of pictures of a set field. You then use their software to stich them all together. I have done this by hand, putting together about 5-6 photos to create 50+megaixel images.

A pro working for Gigapan just took a 45 gigapixel photo of Dubai, and its pretty damn cool:
http://www.gigapan.org/gigapans/48492/

This is the kind of thing digital photography was really meant for - breaking the boundaries of what used to be possible. The first generation of just replacing film and doing the same things is just about over, I welcome the coming of the second generation of digital photography, where it really breaks new ground.

Scientists Find God's Toe

"I would not say that this announcement is the equivalent of seeing the face of God, but it might turn out to be the toe of God."

What the hell are scientists doing poking around the toes of the almighty? I think there might be some Olympian podophilia going on here.

But really, it's scientists making a bit of a joke. "God" refers to the principle that something created the universe. And in this case, the principle that since we are all here, something in the Standard Model has to be wrong. Because according to the Standard Model's Book of The Start of Things:

First God made matter & antimatter. 2 The universe was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was writing up complex equations to keep things in balance and stop it all going wrong like it did the last time, ugly business that. 3 And God said, "Let there be light"; and, after he fumbled for the particle smasher for a while, cursed the old universe stove, and wondered whether Jesus had been screwing around with things again, there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness, because if something didn't keep them apart they would just blow each other up and He would have to start all over again, which frankly is an Almighty pain in the ass.

So there you have it. Genesis according to the standard model. I do find it kind of ironically amusing that the standard model and genesis actually do share a fair bit - specifically the light/darkness matter/antimatter bit. Because the thing is, according to the standard model (our current understanding of the universe) matter and antimatter should be perfectly balanced and should have wiped each other out right after the big bang.

The one inconvenient piece of evidence that this did not happen is... well.. us. And everything around us. It simply should not be here. But it, more or less undeniably, is. So something stopped matter and anti-matter from pulling the buddy system of Armageddon.

Experiments at Tevatron, now the world's second largest atom smasher, now show how we might all happen to exist.
Basically, they showed that when you smash everything up and make yourself a little mini-universe, put on your best white robe and beard and walk around talking to yourself in the third person, that of its own accord about 1% more matter is created than anti-matter. This is due to the benevolence of God the fact that certain sub-atomic particles are just happier being matter than anti-matter.

The Church has come out an speculated that this is only due to the fact that God liberally sprinkled the universe with Prozac, which is proven by a footnote in Luke 152:15 subsection F.

To me, this is again one of those times when omnivorous religion is pushed back a little further. Good religion - the kind that does not involve itself in science or calling for people to be killed and books to be burned - does not give a shit, because long ago they decided that the whole science thing should, shockingly, be left to science. Crazy idea that.

The Air Force Wants Reuseable Rockets

The Air Force has stated that it wants a reusable launch platform, and hopes to cut costs about 50%.

First the bad news:
http://www.flatrock.org.nz/topics/odds_and_oddities/assets/space_shuttle_sonic_boom.jpg

Yeah, it has not worked out before. A big reason we built the Space Shuttle in the first place was for the Air Force, but when payloads got too expensive, the Air Force stopped using it.

Now they want their own, automated version.
http://news.discovery.com/space/air-force-reusable-rockets.html

I would love it if this works out - I just have to caution that we have been down this road before. Personally - I would like to see other options - like a giant gun for shooting satellites into space. I'm not kidding, more to come later.

The Problem with Car Comparison Tests

"What is the best v6 Sports Car?"
"Luxury Convertible Shootout"
"We Pick From 8 Mostly Indistinguishable Midsized Sedans"

I love car comparison tests. But they are seriously flawed.

The issue is this: when car magazines and websites do a test, they get hold of a type of car, and find the best one. Compacts, sports coupes, near-luxury, floaty old boat Florida luxury (though mercifully that one is rare other than the AARP auto column).

But that's not how we, as human beings with certain levels of income, buy cars. Or at least not how most of us buy cars. Most of us have a price point, something we go in thinking "I really want this car, but I have to see if I can get it at the right price." We probably have a few cars in mind, and possibly a few sets of options as well - heated seats, navigation, 4wd/AWD, tall seating position, stick-shift (there's still a few of us), v6 vs. 4-banger.

But the number one thing will always come down to price. Which is what makes reviews like this one ridiculous:
http://www.autoblog.com/2010/05/17/battle-of-the-sixes-mustang-v6-takes-on-genesis-coupe-and-370z/

They test the 370z vs. V6 Mustang vs. Hyundai Genesis Coupe. And their conclusion is that the 370z is the best car. But... this is the last para of their test:

"Here's the real kicker: Our Nissan tester stickered for a whopping $9,000 more than the Mustang V6. At $34,605, the 370Z is also nearly $4,000 more than the $30,875 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8. This means that our third place Mustang verdict comes with a big old asterisk. We knew the Ford was punching above its weight, but we didn't know exactly how much until we looked at the numbers. At $25,780 then, the 2011 Mustang V6 is something of a hero. Our point is this: if one were to pour $9,000 into a Mustang, not only would that tick nearly every single option box, but you would also get a 'Stang GT stuffed full of Ford's righteous new 5.0-liter Ti-VCT V8 with 412 hp and 392 lb-ft. Gussied up in that garb, and complete with a set of Brembos, we strongly suspect the Mustang GT would wipe the floor with the Genesis Coupe 3.8 and wholly humble the winning Nissan 370Z. But alas, that's another comparison."

NO. Its NOT another comparison. THAT IS THE WHOLE FRIGGIN POINT. If I were buying a sports car there is a goddamn huge difference between $26,000 and $35,000. I could throw the Porsche 911 Turbo in as a 6-cylinder sports car and I am sure it would win the test, hell its even a similar size, weight, and shape to the 370z... but, shockingly, it costs $132,800. Whoops, well, I guess we should put an asterisk next to that one.

The point is, car comparison tests are so rarely actually dedicated to comparing cars that buyers will you know.. compare. That is except Consumer Reports, which rates the Ford Crown Victoria a "recommended buy."
http://pictures.topspeed.com/IMG/crop/200607/2007-ford-crown-victoria-1_460x0w.jpg
You know what else is a good buy?
http://image3.examiner.com/images/blog/EXID32319/images/Amish.jpg

So there's the issue. You have car and driver, road and track, autoblog etc all out there writing for the guys like me who are already in love with cars (mmm 500hp showdown and a supercar challenge all in one issue! I wonder which car is the centerfold this month...) and then you have Consumer Reports saying that the best bet is to buy a coal-powered steamship from 1812: they really are reliable.

What this leaves is the average consumer walking into a dealership where they are told that the car they really want has been sitting on the lot for 9 months, has leather, the premium package, navigation system, and the "sport package", and ends up costing $8,000 more than the car they were there to buy in the first place. Oh and its "this model year" but really its an aging platform which really is far behind the competition - but did I mention it is the v6?

There is this massive disconnect between what people are looking at from the dealer, and what the automotive press is writing about (yes - I love the Mustang, BMW 3-series/M3, Porsche 911 or Chevy Camaro, but honestly you would think they were the best selling cars on earth). Again, with the exception of Consumer Reports, which is still lamenting the passing of Oldsmobile because that eliminated 50% of its "recommended buys".

I would personally love to do it, but I dont have the time. What with working, upending the world order, and driving around in a variety of cars - I'm just a little short on time.

I'll do what I can though - next up is my $3,000 summer car challenge.

Robin Hood

Robin Hood - which as far as I can tell seems to be the unofficial sequel to Gladiator - is getting roundly panned by critics today.

It has more or less been called unhappy, dirty, mucky, boring, dull, and not actually Robin Hood.

All of these are possibly true, and I was just about ready to give up and say I would not bother seeing this one in theaters, and then I read this in the NYT:

"You may have heard that Robin Hood stole from the rich and gave to the poor, but that was just liberal media propaganda. This Robin is no socialist bandit practicing freelance wealth redistribution, but rather a manly libertarian rebel striking out against high taxes and a big government scheme to trample the ancient liberties of property owners and provincial nobles. Don’t tread on him!"

Hmmm... sounds kind of good actually...

And then it goes on to spend a lot of time talking about how the movie makes fun of French surrender monkeys... which is even better.

So granted it is meant to be a lumbering slow movie with over the top battles and poorly developed characters. But it is libertarian and anti-French, how bad could it be?

How does craigslist make money?

I have had a number of people ask me this one.

They dont advertise.

They dont sell you anything

The dont screw you like a sneaky ass weasel in the way ebay does (always has "sales" on the posting fees - which are almost nothing, but few people pay attention to the final value fee or the paypal fee - also owned by ebay - which ends up being 7-10%)

They have huge costs due to the massive traffic they generate (though not due to payments to web designers..)

So where the hell does all the money come from?

One source, and one source alone: job listings. It costs about $20 to list a job on craigslist, depending on the city/state/country you are posting in. This alone is where craigslist derives its income, to the best of my knowledge. And long may it stay that way. In cities such as Boston where I live, craigslist has become deeply ingrained into the way of life, as the default method for finding/offering jobs, furniture, and apartments, but also just as a way of cyclical community recycling which keeps a college and young-person's town such as this alive, vibrant, and cheap(er).

Plus its just awesome sometimes.

Space Price Wars

How would you feel about paying $200,000 to get into space?

Because, though no-one has actually flown yet, that for the last year or so has been the price of a ticket, courtesy of Richard Branson, Burt Rutan and Scaled Composites, all wrapped up into a badass package known as Virgin Galatic. And, to top it off, their ship is called the V.S.S. Enterprise.

But what if I told you there was a second option, for only $100,000?

Space Adventures (who set up all kinds of things, including some of the Russian MIR and ISS trips) is looking to book you on a flight with Armadillo Aerospace for only $100,000. Sweet deal!

Or not...

The thing is, Scaled Composites is the only NewSpace company to you know, actually make it into space with a human on board. Armadillo is well respected, and has won some X-Prize lunar lander challenges (on earth) etc, but it has not sent anyone or anything into space yet. Let along bring them back alive.

Which is why, to me, space tourism falls into that category of goods you don't just go for the cheapest option, such as hotel rooms in New York, tattoo artists and Las Vegas all-you-can-eat buffets (or other things in Las Vegas).

Which is why I would stick with Virgin Galactic, though lets be honest, no-one has flown as a tourist in space for less than $20 million, so really we are all just waiting for the new revolution to begin. Arguing over who has the lowest prices seems a little premature when we have not even crossed the starting line yet, but who am I to be against competition. Hell - I hope it will be only $50,000 in 10 years, and that I will be able to pay it.

Brits Get Excited over Top Gear

Seriously excited..

That desk job is killing you

No, quite literally. Turns out that the office chair and your comfy couch when you get home from work to unwind are conspiring to turn you into a fat and unhealthy blob destined for an early death.

Credit goes to James over at The Four Part Land for tracking this one down.

Here are a couple excerpts:

"If you're reading this article sitting down—the position we all hold more than any other, for an average of 8.9 hours a day—stop and take stock of how your body feels. Is there an ache in your lower back? A light numbness in your rear and lower thigh? Are you feeling a little down?

These symptoms are all normal, and they're not good. They may well be caused by doing precisely what you're doing—sitting. New research in the diverse fields of epidemiology, molecular biology, biomechanics, and physiology is converging toward a startling conclusion: Sitting is a public-health risk. And exercising doesn't offset it. "People need to understand that the qualitative mechanisms of sitting are completely different from walking or exercising," says University of Missouri microbiologist Marc Hamilton. "Sitting too much is not the same as exercising too little. They do completely different things to the body."

......

Older people who move around have half the mortality rate of their peers. Frequent TV and Web surfers (sitters) have higher rates of hypertension, obesity, high blood triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, and high blood sugar, regardless of weight. Lean people, on average, stand for two hours longer than their counterparts."

Check out the whole article here, well worth the read:
http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/10_19/b4177071221162.htm

Honestly - it just makes sense. The more research we do, the more we find out that what is good for us, eating natural fats, running barefoot, standing up, is what humans did for tens of thousands of years before the advent of the modern world around the time of your great-great-granddad.

The Devolution of Facebook Privacy

If you want to check an interesting representation of the slow destruction of Facebook privacy, check out the link below. Basically, the default setting is now that everything you have on your page, including your interests etc, it public.

This is totally screwed up, and one of the reasons I liked Facebook more than MySpace back in the day - it was private and felt more secure.

I honestly hope facebook dies and something new comes along to take its place, possibly something with a modicum of user control and a desire to leave people alone.

http://mattmckeon.com/facebook-privacy/

I hate Delta

I have had many bad experiences on Delta. I once stood in a long line for customer service (as in over an hour line), while there were three people behind the counter. One of them was texting constantly, and literally hiding under the counter, a second was sort of slowly talking to a woman, but really was obviously just stalling for time, and kept asking the third if he could take a break yet. The third, a nice but completely exasperated girl, was trying to handle all of the customer issues, all at the same time. This being Delta, there were a lot of customer issues. I doubt she lasted more than 3months with Delta. Honestly, the approach of every Delta employee seems to be that you are an annoying POS just for showing up and flying with them. Well fuck you Delta and cheers to your long decline.

This, to me, typifies Delta:

Entire Dog Lost, Delta Offers $200 Credit

0 views
Where's Paco? Josiah doesn't know, his girlfriend doesn't know, someone at Delta might know. After all, Delta was supposed to load Josiah's new dog on the same plane that Josiah got on. Paco didn't land with them. Frantic, Josiah called around desperately before being told that Paco was safe and sound, being taken care of by Delta employees, who would put him on the next flight out. Paco wasn't on that one either. More harried calls and Delta told Josiah Paco had "escaped" and the best they could do is refund his $200.00 pet transportation fee, but only as a "credit" for future Delta travel. That doesn't do Josiah any good, as he's vowed to never fly Delta again.

Norm's Car Review: The Fisker Karma

No one has actually driven the Fisker Karma, and so I am going to throw my imaginary review into the mix.

It sucks.

For those unaware of the Karma, it is a hybrid sports car which the Obama administration saw fit to back with a $500 million loan, even though only 6 prototypes have been created.

First, and lets get this out of the way, it looks great:
http://images.nitrobahn.com/cgi-bin/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/Fisker-Karma.jpg

And if you read the current issue of Pop Sci (a great magazine, but with a tendency for over-enthusiasm), you will see many pages of gushing review about the car, the man, the story and the future of Fisker and Detroit (tied, in their eyes, irrevocably together). But you need to keep reading because somewhere after the story jumps from the middle of the magazine to the advertising section in the back, where they tell you it is on page 92 but there are no goddamn page numbers because its all just ads for car shelters and pheromones and you hunt for 5 friggin minutes before you find the last part of the story.

And that last part of the story tells you three, critical, statistics.

The car has a top speed of 94mph under electric power (more on this later)

The car weighs 5,800lbs

It costs $87,000

For reference, my '98 dearly departed Ford Expedition weighed 5,300lbs and had a electronically limited top speed of 105mph. I once got it up to 110mph, but that was going downhill. I sold it for $1,000 with a broken heater core.

The thing is, Fisker says he wants people to look at his car and think not "hey, look at the hippiemobile" but rather "whoa, check out the supercar." Those were pretty much his words actually.

But regardless of what you make it look like, if it is slow and heavy, it is going to be a flop of a sports car. Not to mention the idea of using government loans, an emphasis on safety and new technology, and a built from scratch car company. Also, it is run by a widely accredited and respected member of the traditional automotive world setting out all on his own, but with little or no CEO experience. Where have I heard all this before? Oh yeah...

http://www.ryanwright.com/delorean/jzd/jzd1.jpg

granted, it did give us this:
http://scrapetv.com/News/News%20Pages/Politics/images-2/back-to-the-future-delorean.jpg

but that is about the best thing that can be said about the DeLorean.

Fisker will be much the same. We will be lucky as taxpayers to get any of that $500 million back. Quite honestly, the idea of a 5,800lb sports car is a fucking joke.

That is near as damnit the same weight as a Rolls-Royce Phantom. Actually - not just any Rolls, but the extended wheelbase model:



Now sure, I would love to have one of these cars in order to plot my takeover of the governments of earth, but to call one a sports car would be like claiming Al Roker can run a 4 minute mile.

And that is even with the ginormous gas guzzling engine which Rolls puts in these things, generally endowed with enough torque to qualify as a commercial container ship engine.

Instead, the batteries of the Fisker are going to be charged off of a GM Ecotec engine. Now, assuming 100% efficiency in the charging to powering the wheels with electric motors, this means the car will have at most about 200hp on tap. But wait - there's more! Fisker claims that the top speed is 125mph while the engine is running (vs. 94 on batteries alone), which means the batteries while not charging put out less than 200hp. Though granted, they will put out a lot more torque, being electric and all, lets be generous and say they will generate 170hp. For a 5,800lb car.

This is roughly 25% less power-to-weight than a 1990 Hyundai Excel base model:

mmmmm... sexy....

In other words, you wont just get beaten off the line by plebian $25,000 Mustang GTs. You will get beaten off the line by $2,500 Volkswagen Golfs. And $250 Buick Century beaters.

http://www.spartyandfriends.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/redneck-car.jpg
"Yup, she'll still go on and smoke them there Fishker that Mr. Jones done bought. Took it right off the line, wernt a bad piece 'o driving if I do say so myself." *spits tobacco in general direction of the Jones house*

That pretty much sums it up. It costs what a 911 costs, will be slower than a 20yr old death-box, and not only has a single production model never been built, the production line hasn't been built.

I forgot to mention it was is going to come out in 2009 2010 2011.

In conclusion, you will likely never see one, and that's a good thing.


Norm's Convertible

I am currently looking for an inexpensive summer convertible, after selling my 300zx due to it needing too much work.

What that means is looking at craigslist a lot for cheaper convertibles.

What that means is dredging up a lot of crap.

This one, I promise, I have changed nothing:

http://nh.craigslist.org/cto/1731810803.html
new hampshire craigslist > for sale / wanted > cars & trucks - by owner
Avoid scams and fraud by dealing locally! Beware any deal involving Western Union, Moneygram, wire transfer, cashier check, money order, shipping, escrow, or any promise of transaction protection/certification/guarantee. More info

65 Malibu Chevelle SS Convertible - $2500


Date: 2010-05-09, 7:52AM EDT
Reply to: sale-rdnyu-1731810803@craigslist.org [Errors when replying to ads?]



65 malibu chevelle ss convertible. This is a real 138 code ss. It is in very rough shape and is in need of complete restore. I have the original 283 plus an extra block. 4 speed trans has been removed and does not come with it. Email to view car in Mason NH

  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
image 1731810803-0
image 1731810803-2

British PM quiz


Britain took the quiz Who Would You Rather Have as Prime Minister?

David Beckham
45%
Amy Winehouse
15%
Prince Harry
10%
Wallace
10%
Gromit
20%
Gordon Brown
0%

Best of Craigslist

Some selections from craigslist:

Totally AWESOME Kimball Organ


Date: 2010-02-23, 5:49PM MST


Dude, this thing is sick. You need this organ.
Find out why this does not turn on and then you will be ready to rock out, or play some hymns at your local church!
Make an offer, any offer! Any trades considered!
Would love to trade for a cute puppy like this:


Check out this video of what you could be doing in just a few short weeks of practice:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BE8Mv5ww4BM&feature=related

Here is a picture of the glorious beast.


There is a good chance that it stopped working because we brought it out in the snow to play while we snowboarded in our front yard..

Come get it before this weekend and I'll throw in a free high five! Yeah dude!




You aren't looking for them, but I found your two dogs.


Date: 2010-02-18, 4:42PM EST


Sigh. No one is looking for these guys. And I see why. They hump everything in sight, try to dominate our old doggies, try to eat our cats and pee on everything and bark at everything. Neurotic, lick constantly. They know no commands, either in English or Spanish. They are aggressive and probably lived in a puppy mill. You dumped them, probably, and we picked them up before they were killed by traffic. Unneutered, no tags, under 1 year old small males. I hate you, person who dumped these dogs. There are no lost ads on phone poles, no lost ad on Craig's list, no lost ad in the paper. We put signs up all over, put a found notice in at the local pounds and if you were looking for these filthy little ragamuffins, you would have found them. We are afraid to take them to the pound because under stress, your dogs were snappy and horribly afraid and dogs are judged by temperament for adoption placement. They would not have passed that test. However.....

They are, under their filth, mats and horrible habits, adorable. They have learned "Quiet," "Come," "Sit." They have stopped being so neurotic and we have broken most of their bad habits in just a few days. They are smart and sweet and are looking for guidance and WANT to be good little dogs. One is a purebred little white and buff guy with an under bite, the other is a brown little dog that looks almost exactly like a miniature version of a larger breed dog. They know each other and were obviously (by the same bad habits) raised (poorly) together. We will get them neutered, train them and get them into a good, loving home with people who use the brains God gave them.

If these are your dogs, come on by, I'd like to kick your ass.

  • Location: Atlanta
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

Large Boat for sale


Date: 2010-02-16, 1:17PM CST


Due to the bad economy, I can no longer afford to fill up the diesel tanks on this thing and pay my crew. Therefore, I am forced to sell my 1977 Nimitz-class aircraft carrier. New paint and propellors. 22 knots max. Looking for around $2,000,000 or best offer. No pirates or scammers.

  • Location: North Atlantic
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests




new york > WE NEED A SMART PERSON Originally Posted: Thu, 11 Feb 13:10 EST

WE NEED A SMART PERSON


Date: 2010-02-11, 1:10PM EST


We need a smart or more person to help un with our Company.

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PostingID: 1596308401


LOST: Tripod in a sewer


Date: 2010-02-08, 9:00PM EST


Last night, I dropped my tripod in a fast flowing sewer, and it got carried away into the shitty abyss. If you're an Ashbridges Bay sewage treatment plant worker, and you find a black Manfrotto 752B ball head tripod, it's mine, and I miss it.

Thanks for your time.

  • Location: East Toronto
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID: 1592354224


st louis > Amazing Deal Originally Posted: Sun, 7 Feb 06:14 CST

Amazing Deal


Date: 2010-02-07, 6:14AM CST


a couple of used kitchen appliances and some tables and chairs along with the rights to rent space in a strip mall for sale....

I am calling it a restaurant since that is what I tried to do, but it could be a great place to turn lead into GOLD !!!... Or possibly make MILLIONS of dollars overnight shining shoes... all for a wee $65,000...... Yeah you could just buy an oven, fridge, and gas grill, with an exhaust hood, and some tables and chairs at auction for less that $15,000...... But, that wouldn't be a profit to me now would it.... Or maybe I dumped a couple hundred grand in the place buying new and paying for contractors to do all the work for me... I can't remember... and I never would tell the truth anyway... I am claiming to sell for health reasons and I will tell you I plan to retire in Florida or some BS that makes you think I made a ton of money here...

All items are located deep in the ghetto where no one has any money and crime is high just in front of the parking lot with all the pot holes. That spot famous for being the place the gangs and drug dealers like to hang out and shoot each other.... Plenty of customers like to come in and haggle for a cheaper price than my listed menu prices and at least 500 methheads live close by in the alley, so plenty of foot traffic close by... and every hour someone will call up saying there was hair in their food and they demand 5 times the amount of food they paid for to make them feel better... But, you can be your own boss !!! So isn't it worth overpaying for my used appliances to save you a day or two of running around ?....There is no electricity or gas on to prove any of the equipment works, but you are the trusting type....

all of the tables have sayings like T-Bone was here... and the local High School rules... and Freddy stinks... but there is also phone numbers for easy girls who put out and funny looking charactures engraved in the table tops... and plenty of graffiti on the wall outside adding character to the building..

According to the Health Dept, the dumpster out back needs to be fenced in but the landlord won't bother since the methheads tear the fencing down to turn in for scrap.. The fence just gets in the way of the bums throwing trash all over anyway... , so every time the health department inspects the place you lose 30 points right off the bat... but 70 is still passing if everything else passes with flying colors.. just don't get a single point taken off inside and you'll be ok...

anywho...I know you working class slobs are desperate to do anything but get an education or research the cost yourselves... You will just waste that SBA loan or inheritence on something like this, so I have one for sale... At least I will have if you reply to this ad and prove you have the money.... which I will need to see before I show you the place


This is a real money pit... you can't go wrong.... and besides... why stay employed without much responsibility and kiss your employer's butt when you can kiss all of St Louis's lower class butt as a restaurant owner.... Where every customer is like your boss at work ... Only these people are even more difficult to deal with because they seriously want and expect free food and drinks every day and every hour you are open.... and they lack confidence since they are poor and want you to try REAL hard to respect them... It shouldn't matter that they have criminal records, no money, and are ugly to the eye.. They have to be super-respected due to a insecurity of ego...

Yep, nothing like being your own boss..... putting everything you worked for your whole life on the line even though you have absolutely no experience running a restaurant other than that fast food joint back in high school and that waiting tables job in college... After all, you want to make hamburgers or pizza, and no one else in St Louis does that.... You can be the only one to offer such unique food items to the public... Or maybe you can do it better than those other restaurants who have been in business for 30 years or more by adding brussel sprouts or some other kind of goat food to a traditional food item... just remember taste doesn't mean anything as long as the food has either a catchy name or is considered healthy or whatever the latest fad is...

$12,000 worth of equipment and a lease you could sign yourself for $65,000..... you can't go wrong.... Of course none of the equipment is Viking... Just crap known to break down so the company who originally sold it can make money coming out to repair it once a month...

If interested, write a check for $65,000 cash and hand it to your worst enemy, then call it a learning experience... and save years on your life from worry about bills and time wasted chasing greener pastures..... You will save a ton of money in litigation costs by not defaulting on the lease too.....

I am the best deal in the world for an inexperienced yuppie with pipe dreams of leaving the office behind or some out of work loser who will never open a book and find out how to make money in this world... Yep.... Forget college and experience.... There is always a short cut.... Everyone knows this... and here is your chance...

You will have to sign away all of your rights to sue me when I put "As Is" on the purchase agreement... but you aren't paying attention to any of that since you will be all emotional about starting your own business and be caught up in your dream of being the next Macdonald's food chain... and besides any high school drop out can run a successful restaurant.. This was proven years ago by that one guy...

I might even be willing to owner finance if I get close to declaring bankruptcy... but I will wait till the last minute and screw myself trying to get a cash deal like I like to do.... So you know... Buy now... If you don't like this one, I am working this hustle at 5 other locations too.... I never run a restaurant for real... I just make it look like one has been run there... No one ever asks to see my books... I just put some equipment in a strip mall, rent out the space for $6000 a year and sell it for $65,000 each time... But you the buyer won't know any different, I promise.. !!

I can even put you in touch with the restaurant consultant who charges me $200 an hour to tell me what I could have looked up on the internet for free... he's a great guy.... he didn't get anywhere with his business of 15 years, but he did find a Rube just like you who had a million dollars to pay him for his trumped up books, used equipment, and leasehold like I am offering today... but I am only charging $65,000...... See how nice I am !!!


Anyway... I am going on.... I didn't put up any contact info because I don't need to screw over people to make money running scams like this for real... I actually can run a business successfully... So, you know... Best of luck and don't break a finger flagging me.... Karma has a way of getting ya like that...


Go Saints in the Super Bowl today... !!

  • Location: Ghetto
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