Who IS this guy?!

'Niceguy' Eddie

Political Talk Show Host and Internet Radio Personality. My show, In My Humble Opinion, aired on RainbowRadio from 2015-2017.

Feel free to contact me at niceguy9418@usa.com. You can also friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and Tumblr, and support my Patreon. Also, if you don't mind the stench, you can find my unofficial "fan club" over HERE. ;)

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Monday, April 30, 2012

King Gets It!

Although I honestly believe IT to be among the greatest books every written, and to date it is the only one that has actually, truly scared me,  I must say that it's been awhile since I've given any consideration one way of the other to Stehen King.  Until now.

I wish I could sum it all up, but I can't.  Check out his column for the Daily Beast, entitled, "Tax Me, For Fuck's Sake!"

It's great stuff. 






Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Case for Obama, Part 1: These "hard" economic times

There are two things I'm sick and tired of hearing about.  The first is that Obama and the Democrats are strong with voters on social issues, whilst Romney and the Republicans have the edge on economic and fiscal matters. In a word? BALONEY SAUSAGE. I've written plenty of posts in the past showing just how mush better things are under Democrats on purely economic terms, and [and this is the other thing I'm sick of hearing] "these hard economic times" are no different.  And don't expect the mainstream media to tell you any of this, but the fact is? Times ain't so bad. In fact, well... I'll let the data do the talking.

Exhibit A: The Dow Jones Industrial Average.  Generally considered one of the best indicators of overall economic health in this country.  Now, to put in context just what a wet, steaming pile of bullshit it is that people are talking about Obama like (1) he's done anything wrong, (2) that there IS actually anything wrong, and (3) that [even though it isn't wrong] it's all his fault, I want to start back a bit, to when George W. Bush took office, just to remind everyone what a shitty stock market REALLY looks like.  This is the DJIA from Inauguration day, 2001 to Election Day, 2004 (From Yahoo Finance):
Bottom line? DOWN 5.13%.  DOWN. Over FOUR YEARS! And that asshole got re-elected despite that!  Of course we all know how his second term fared.  Here's Election day, 2004 to Election day 2008:
Down 13.9%! And Conservatives wonder why Obama got elected? Conservatives are still trying to  argue that OBAMA destroyed the economy?! The DOW was down 13.9% in the four years since we reelected the guy under whom it had all ready fallen 5.13%!  Here's Bush's eight year term, Inauguration Day, 2001 to Inauguration Day, 2009:
Wow. DOWN 24.23%. Way to go, Georgie! Here's what's happened since Obama took office:

BOOM! UP! UP! UP! 66.4%! Wow! Now... I don't want anyone to get the idea that I think the President is directly, 100% responsible for the stock market, but... Let's not forget that the guys who are whining about "these hard economic times" are the guys who (1) got re-election after a 5% decline, and (2) were down over 24% by the time they were done.  And we're up 66% right now and I'm supposed to believe that it's THE OTHER GUYS who have the economic wherewithal?  Bullshit. According to the DJIA, Obama's done roughly three times the good in under four years than the amount of harm down by George W. Bush in EIGHT. 

Well, maybe the DJIA has a Liberal bias or something. I wonder what the S & P 500 looked like during Bush's first term:
Whoa. Down 13.16%. How the hell did that redneck get re-elected?! Is anyone goimng to seriously tell me that there's Liberal Bias in the media?!  Where was it in 2004?  Oh, and uh... How's things go the second time around?
Oh my God! DOWN 21.38%!  Almost as bad as the DOW. And people say Obama's presiding over a bad economy?!  Here was Shrub's eight year performance on the S & P:
Down 38.6%. Holy. Fucking. Shit. And since Obama took office?
And BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE! UP SEVENTY FOUR POINT TWO-EIGHT PERCENT! Oh, yeah: Let's get rid of this guy!

The NASDAQ tells the same story:
Down 28.03%. That in just his first term folks! Can someone PLEASE tell me how John Kerry didn't beat this ass-clown in a LANDSLIDE?  Liberal Media, my hairy, unwashed ass!

Second time around:
Down another 19.2%. And they wonder why the lost. Must have been that Liberally biased STOCK MARKET. 

Overall, our roughly fifth worst President of all time managed to take a whopping 46.88% out of the NASDAQ during his tenure. Remember: This was the guy who mocked Al Gore's legislation that created the Internet.  OK, so how's the NASDAQ doing under Obama?

Up... One-Hundred... and... Thirteen... Percent.  Holy... Fucking... Shit... (I should have bought more!)  And really, to show how skull-fuckingly stupid (or just plain screwed) the Republicans are here, they keep trying to disappear George W. Bush's UTTER ECONOMIC FAILURES, every time Obama reminds people how bad things were under Bush. Thing is? The main reason that Obama's stock market has been as good as it was, is because it started in such a deep, dark hole! Saying that he came in essentially just at the right time, would be the easiest way for the Republicans to poo-poo his success. But, of course, they can't say THAT, because (1) they'd have to actually ACKNOWLEDGE his success, and admit that he also did the right things, and (2) they'd have to acknowledge Bush's FAILURE.

And... it's just easier for them to lie about it.  None of the Conservatively biased Mainstream Media is going to break from the narrative that the Right's strength is economics, (note: it isn't. they have no strengths) nor call out Fox News for going above and beyond in the field of outright deceit and propaganda.

OK, so admittedly the Stock Market MIGHT not be the best measure. (That sure was FUN for me to go through though, let me tell you!)  How about the GDP? Well, here's a chart:


It's from this article. My favorite part of which is the following line:
The average growth rate in private real quarterly GDP since 2000 has been 1.76%, so the private sector of the U.S. economy expanded in the first quarter of 2012 at twice the average rate over the last 12 years
I keep hearing about how slow, and sluggish and disappointing that 2.2% rate is, but "double the rate of the last twelve years?!" Seems like we're doing just fine in that regard as well.  BTW, you see those RED LINES?  Well, the Conservative Toadies in the Mainstream media won't tell you this, but... those are REDUCTIONS in Government Spending. And contrary to what the Macroeconomic Failures who drew up the Paul Ryan Budget will tell you: That's a drag on the economy.  So, if you think Obama should be doing more (meaning SPENDING more?) I'd agree with you 100%.  But that criticism sure as hell isn't a reason to vote Republican! And if you think he should cut more? Then you're either a Billionaire or an idiot who doesn't understand how economics works and will be out a job sooner than he thinks.

Speaking of which, unemployment is becoming so much NOT A PROBLEM, that Fox News has gone so far as to allege a conspiracy over the numbers!  Sarah Palin even questioned their accuracy!  Eric Bolling again accused the BLS of being partisan! Imagine the gall it takes, for a guy on FOX NEWS to accuse the BLS of partisan bias!  There should have been a quantum singularity forming in his crotch due to the gravity created by his massively HUGE BALLS.

Here's an unemployment chart that ought to get Obama re-elected:

Wow. Again what do we see? Things getting worse and worse and worse under Bush... And things getting better and better and batter, and the staying in the green under Obama.

Now, I'm going to look at energy and gas prices next, and I've never been shy about delving into social issues myself, but on a purely economic basis? Everything got worse under Bush, and everything has gotten better under Obama.  That not my opinion: That's what the data says. It's not a "liberal talking point" either: It's MATH.

If anyone needs a quick reference here you go:

As of 4/29/2012:

DJIA:
When Bush got re-elected: DOWN, -5.13%
Bush's Presidency: DOWN, -24.23%
Under Obama: UP, 66.4%

S&P 500:
When Bush got re-elected: DOWN, -13.16%
Bush's Presidency: DOWN, -38.6%
Under Obama: UP, 74.28%

NASDAQ:
When Bush got re-elected: DOWN, -28.03%
Bush's Presidency: DOWN, -46.88%
Under Obama: UP, 113.05%

I'm still stunned by this. Can you imagine what they'd be saying about Obama's economy if his markets had George Bush's returns?  Oh, yeah, but Bush gets re-elected after net first-term losses, and the so-called 'Liberal' media media keeps up the narrative that Republicans know their asses from their elbows when it comes to the economy.

One final note, regarding the millions of people still trying to find work.  In no way is my post here implying that your plight is not real. You're out of work. And no amount of economic data is going to put food on your table. (Of course... the Republicans want to kill anything that WILL do that as well.) The point here is WHY. WHY are there are so many unemployed people? And WHO, WHO is going to make things better and who will make them worst? History says the Republicans will make it worse. They're the ones who MADE IT BAD in the first place. And AUSTERITY won't fix anything. Obama has been embracing Austerity at an astounding rate, mainly to appease the Right, and it is the number one thing HAMPERING our economic recovery.  The Right will only give you more of he only thing Obama actually IS doing wrong economically. And that's not my opinion, or mere conjecture. I KNOW this because they've promised as much.  That's what massive SPENDING CUTS will do folks: Kill the economy. DO NOT give the Republicans this chance!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I'm back / Personal message

Unlike the other audios, this one's not a joke or anything. I just resorting to that becasue I can't type very easily right now rigth now. (I explain why in the audio.)


Also, some of my future posts may be in audio format as well, IDK.  We'll see.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Thinking Liberally...

I recently had a brief email conversation with my good friend and online mentor (who I've never met, LOL) Professor Bob Carroll, author of my Bible, The Skeptics Dictionary and the highly recommended Unnatural Acts: Critical Thinking, Skepticism, and Science Exposed!. In the course of the emails, he sent me a link:

http://www.freakonomics.com/2012/04/09/the-thinking-liberal/

Now... I don't see any "political bias" when I look at the Freakanomics guys. I see them getting in plenty of hot water with both Liberals and Conservatives, and there is very little that "politically correct" about them, no matter how you slice it. Also, it should be mentioned that while I don't always agree with their conclusions, there is no denying that they'll give you something to think about, and a perspective that, regardless of your ideology, you likely hadn't considered before. And I like that sort of thing no matter where it's coming from.

But that post really made me laugh out loud.  Particularly the summary/brief that was posted about the paper (my favorite parts in bold.):
The authors test the hypothesis that low-effort thought promotes political conservatism. In Study 1, alcohol intoxication was measured among bar patrons; as blood alcohol level increased, so did political conservatism (controlling for sex, education, and political identification). In Study 2, participants under cognitive load reported more conservative attitudes than their no-load counterparts. In Study 3, time pressure increased participants’ endorsement of conservative terms. In Study 4, participants considering political terms in a cursory manner endorsed conservative terms more than those asked to cogitate; an indicator of effortful thought (recognition memory) partially mediated the relationship between processing effort and conservatism. Together these data suggest that political conservatism may be a process consequence of low-effort thought; when effortful, deliberate thought is disengaged, endorsement of conservative ideology increases.
Yeah... Ain't that the truth!

Another book recommendation, from Professor Carroll, which I'll definitely be checking out myself:

The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science--and Reality by Chris Mooney

Should be a fascinating read!

LOL

A Joke About Pennance...



Somehow both the sinner AND the priest ended up being Irish. Not sure that was meant to be that way. LOL.

TARP

TARP was never a popularly supported piece of legislation. And I've defended against attacks from both Liberals and Conservatives alike.  That's not to say that I ever LIKED the idea of what it stood for (from either a Liberal or a Conservative standpoint), but any understanding of what made the mortgage meltdown and subsequent Bush recession SO BAD, reveals the complete NECESSITY of something like TARP at the time.

And I no longer have any interest i discussing the details of this part of it or that part of it anymore.  There is no doubt that there was a lot of bullshit going on, and there always will be.  But to oppose it on any kind of PRINCIPLE? Like hating big corporate banks (Liberals), hating gov't spending (Conservatives) or hating the fact that we're Socializing (Conservatives) corporate losses (Liberals)... Well, all that's just foolishness. Because at the end of the day, this (or something like it) was necessary and, in a big picture sense, it WORKED, warts and all.

So while I have been defending from all sides as a necessary evil (and even "good" legislation in the sense of what it saved us from), I was only a little bit surprised just now too read that it may actually turn a profit, paying for itself and then some for taxpayers.  Now I couldn't care less if it ACTUALLY manages to one or not. Remember: That won't detract from my view that it was NECESSARY, for better or worse. But... (1) Who doesn't like a little gravy with their biscuits? and (2) It certainly goes to show how irrational the critics (regardless of ideology) are who are crying about how much it cost, and what a big waste it was.  Because not only did it save us from a far worse, longer lasting catastrophe (and thus remains as one of the few things George W. Bush did that DIDN'T turn into one!) but even if it fails to turn a profit as currenlty predicted? The loss will likely be minuscule in comparison to the amount of money originally outlaid, and the [largely phony] cost that people are assuming it ended up having.

Which might just end up being less than none.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A joke about Frank Feldman...

Going to trial...

It appears the George Zimmerman will be headed to court to answer for the killing of Trayvon Martin.  This is a good thing.  It would appear that a charge of First Degree Murder is off the table, but based on what I've read about the case, I am not particularly bothered by this.  I've seen no reason to believe that there was any premeditation on the part of Zimmerman and, while I believe that race has been a clear factor throughout this case, I do not believe that he pursued and shot Martin solely because he was Black.  Obviously I don't know EVERYTHING about the case (as one frequent commenter will no doubt remind me) but based on what I DO know a lesser charger (Murder-2, for example?) would seem appropriate.
What was NOT appropriate, and what I am happy to see being resolved, was for Martin to continue to go uncharged, based on a self-defense claim that was never subjected to examination in trial or by a jury of his peers.  And this is a claim that, even given Florida's "Stand Your Ground" / ("Kill-at-Will") statute is undermined by two facts which are not in dispute, even by Zimmerman himself:

1) Martin was unarmed.

2) Zimmerman left the safety of his car to PURSUE Martin, and did so against the advice of the Police on the 9-1-1 call.

Standing you're ground =/= pursuing someone, and pursuing someone certainly =/= an act of self defense.  Ultimately this case may be decided on how the "Stand Your Ground" / (Kill-at-Will) law is interpreted by the Jugge, Lawyers and Jury.

If Zimmerman is found guilty, then it will serve a s precedent to others who would follow Zimmerman's example. It will come to resemble more "Stand you ground" and less "Kill-at-will." It doesn't address ALL the concerns in this ALEC / NRA conceived monstrosity of a legal technicality, but clarifying that HUNTING SOMEONE DOWN is, in fact, still against the law in this Country, and in the State of Florida, can only be a GOOD THING.

If he is found innocent?

Hoo-buy... Well, first of all, I hope that the inevitable and richly deserved and justified public outcry will remain non-violent and non-destructive. Considering what has been presented of this case by the media, to the public? I am too optimistic about this point. (Just being realistic here.) But once the populace realizes that the Liberals' long-held concerns about these kinds of laws are VALID? And that HUNTING SOMEONE DOWN is, in fact, actually LEGAL in some parts of the Country?  I have to believe that the repeal, or at least a significant re-work, of the law will become a matter of complete inevitablilty.

I would say that is also a good thing, but I can find no comfort in the fact that a young man had to die to bring attention to a stupid law that makes a death like this one inevitable.


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And, for the record, I very much support the Second Amendment, and gun OWNERSHIP rights.  This is no more about the Second Amendment that a citizen's boycott of Rush Limbaugh's corporate sponsors is about the First Amendment. This is NOT an issue of gun OWNERSHIP, it is an issue of gun USAGE. So while I despise guns on a personal level, I fully cherrish the fact that my choice of owning one remains my own to make, and thus I fully support the Rights of Americans (violent felons and the mentally ill excepted) to OWN guns.  I do not however support ANYONE'S right to pursue and gun down an unarmed person with one.

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Jokes Should All Work Now...

The jokes should all work now.

I had them marked as "private" instead of "unlisted" on YouTube. So they were playing fine for ME, because it's MY channel, and I'm always signed in!

But they should work now. Sorry about that. (Nobody told me!)

BTW... if you're wondering, my goal was to post a joke a day for the entire month of April.

A joke about Masculinuity and Feminity...

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Technical question for you all...

Out of curiosity, what screen resolutions do you all use?

I want to adjust the size of the different elements of my bog, but I really have no idea what screen sizes to assume most people have.

Mine's 1920x1080 on my desktop, and IIRC my laptop's like 1400x800.

What do you guys have your screens set to?

A Joke About Women...

Sorry, this one ended up being WAY too long.  I think it's worth it though, for both the wisdom and the humor, but YMMV.


I may or may not make a regular post later tonight. I've got plans today, but we'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I'll make this easy...

Some people think they know more than the experts. More than people who have spent their lives studying something, collecting data, making observations, and drawing connections that are supported not only by their own evidence, but by that gathered by their peers as well. And who have spent their careers reconciling the differences between each others work, that we may collective reach a greater and more complete understanding of some phenomenon.  See... that's how science WORKS.   But some people don't think that the opinion of someone who's spent a career learning everything there is to know about something, and collaborating with others who do the same, is the slightest bit more
valuable than that of a talk-show host with a high-school diploma, or a bought-and-paid-for politician, or that most absurd of scientific references: the Bible, or the ideology that they have chosen to follow.

In general, these people call themselves "Conservatives."

Now I have always claimed to be a man of science - by both philosophy and by profession. I have also claimed that I never let ideology do my thinking for me.  If I identify with a certain group on a given issue (or on most issues) it is because their position matches the evidence. And because it matches my own. Which must first match the evidence, regardless of the ideological implications of this. So let's be clear, here: Liberals are not right because they agree with me. Nor am I because I agree with them. (When we DO actually agree, that is.)  And of infinitely more importance, Scientist and Academics are not right because they agree with Liberals, or because they agree with me

WE are right because we agree with THEM.

And you can take almost any Scientific and/or Economic issue and see this quite clearly, if you bother to actually LOOK and actually care about BEING RIGHT, rather than being Liberal or Conservative.  And, yes, to be fair, Liberals ARE guilty of pseudo-science too: witness the lawsuits brought against Dow Chemical over their perfectly harmless silicone breast implants, back in the late '80's, and early '90's, for example. But as Liberals have come to embrace science more and more over the past decade or two, Conservatives have reactively pulled away from it.  One recent Conservative commenter on this blog said it best, I think: "We're Conservative because we don't want to be Liberal." 

(And apparently they don't care a lick about being RIGHT, it seems.)

So anyway... I'm on Wikipedia today, just putzing around. Now I didn't used to consider Wikipedia to be a credible reference. I once told someone, "Don't quote me Wikipedia! ANYONE can edit Wikipedia! Shoot, even I'VE edited Wikipedia!" But I will say that in past year or two, I notice that they've gotten really good about requiring CITATIONS for the facual statements being made. (It's probably also helped that I've limited my own input to the one subject that I actually DO know more about than anyone else: Baseball. LOL) Anyhow, one particularly well-cited article that I read recently was the one on HOMOSEXUALITY.

Very interesting read.  Here are a few of the statements I found to be particular relevant to some of the more spirited discussions we've had recently...

Scientific and medical understanding is that sexual orientation is not a choice, but rather a complex interplay of biological and environmental factors.

Supported by two citations!

While some religious organizations hold the view that homosexual activity is unnatural or dysfunctional, research shows that homosexuality is an example of normal variation in human sexuality and is not in and of itself a source of negative psychological effects.

One citation.

Homosexual behavior is also widely observed in animals.

That statement was supported by no less than FIVE citations!

[Homosexual] relationships are equivalent to heterosexual relationships in essential psychological respects.

One citation.

People with a homosexual orientation can express their sexuality in a variety of ways, and may or may not express it in their behaviors.

One citation.

The longstanding consensus of research and clinical literature demonstrates that same-sex sexual and romantic attractions, feelings, and behaviors are normal and positive variations of human sexuality.

One citation.

There is now a large body of research evidence that indicates that being gay, lesbian or bisexual is compatible with normal mental health and social adjustment.

One citation.

The American Psychological Association says that "most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation."

One citation.

No major mental health professional organization has sanctioned efforts to change sexual orientation and virtually all of them have adopted policy statements cautioning the profession and the public about treatments that purport to change sexual orientation. These include the American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association, American Counseling Association, National Association of Social Workers in the USA, the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and the Australian Psychological Society. The American Psychological Association and the Royal College of Psychiatrists expressed concerns that the positions espoused by NARTH are not supported by the science and create an environment in which prejudice and discrimination can flourish.

FIVE Citations spread throughout that paragraph.

Scientific research has been consistent in showing that lesbian and gay parents are as fit and capable as heterosexual parents, and their children are as psychologically healthy and well-adjusted as children reared by heterosexual parents...

Three Citations

[And] ...According to scientific literature reviews, there is no evidence to the contrary.

FIVE Citations

Here are some particularly important ones:

Stigma, prejudice, and discrimination stemming from negative societal attitudes toward homosexuality lead to a higher prevalence of mental health disorders among lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals compared to their heterosexual peers.

One citation.

Evidence indicates that the liberalization of these attitudes over the past few decades is associated with a decrease in such mental health risks among younger LGBT people.

One citation.

Sexual orientation does not affect the likelihood that people will abuse children.

Three citations.

Claims that there is scientific evidence to support an association between being gay and being a pedophile are based on misuses of those terms and misrepresentation of the actual evidence.

One Citation.

Now... Admittedly, some of those citations are from the same source. But, all and all, this is a ~11,000 word article, in which I didn't find a single line in that doesn't fit perfectly well into my views on the matter, and it is supported by a total of 211 different sources.

TWO. HUNDRED. and ELEVEN. 

See... Being Liberal doesn't make me right.

Being RIGHT makes me right.

And they day the Conservatives decide to start being right, and the Liberals decide to abandon all reason, knowledge and wisdom? I'll happily identify as a Conservative. Until then? I don't require an ideology to do my thinking for me, nor will I labor under the delusion that I can do to do a little bit of five-minute crack research and think that somehow I know something that the world's collective, foremost experts don't.  I'm content to let those with the inclination to spend their lives researching and studying something to figure it out. Because if you're capable of recognizing who is and is not a credible source, and the data supports the position you are accepting?

Well, shoot... I'll always be right.

A Joke About Sex...



I do have a regular post for later today as well, but I've got to run so I wanted to post this early, in case I run out time later.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A joke about Stereotypes...

My thoughts go out to...

Before I put up another joke, I want to extend my heartfelt condolences to the students, alumni and any families who lost loved ones in yesterday's shooting at Oikos University in Oakland California.  Even hundreds of miles away, I remember well how I was affected the day that Seng Hui Cho gunned down 32 of my fellow Hokies at my alma matta, and would not wish for any person to have to share in those feelings, particularly the students who were on campus at the time and thier families. There is simply no good reason that students should feel anyhing but safe in their classrooms, or that a parent should have any worries about thier child while he or she is there.  My thoughts go out to the friends and families of the fallen.  I am so sorry for your losses.