Sunday, January 24, 2010

My Review of MSR Flex Skillet

Originally submitted at REI

Saute up a gourmet meal that's sure to get the attention of your campground neighbors with the MSR Flex skillet.


Light and Good.

By Boulderlaw from Colorado on 1/24/2010

 

4out of 5

Gift: No

Pros: Lightweight, Easy To Clean

Cons: Bulky

Best Uses: Backpacking, Car Camping, High Altitude

Describe Yourself: Avid Adventurer

What Is Your Gear Style: Comfort Driven

I have used this with a pocket stove and a Coleman camp stove. Pancakes, salmon, ground beef—this pan did a great job cooking evenly with no sticking. It is also very light (and consequently not perfectly stable).

(legalese)

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Real "DAY IN THE LIFE OF JOE REPUBLICAN"

This was sent to me a few years ago and I am just now getting around to posting it. I have edited out most of the nonsense. The original text appears in blue.

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF JOE REPUBLICAN
“Joe gets up at 6 a.m. and fills his coffeepot with water to prepare his morning coffee. The water is clean and good because some tree-hugging liberal fought for minimum water-quality standards
Joe filters his water at the tap.

“With his first swallow of coffee, he takes his daily medication. His medications are safe to take because some stupid commie liberal fought to insure their safety and that they work as advertised. His medication costs twice as much as it should because it took 10 years and $10 million to pass the government vetting process. Joe wishes he could switch to a different medication because he knows his government-approved pill will give him a nasty case of the runs later in the day. However, Joe’s options are limited because new drugs to treat his condition are still being approved by the government.

“All but $10 of his medications are paid for by his employer's medical plan because *some liberal* union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance - now Joe gets it too.
Joe’s employer wants him to be healthy so he can remain productive.

“He prepares his morning breakfast, bacon and eggs. Joe's bacon is safe to eat because Some girly-man liberal fought for laws to regulate the meat packing industry. Joe no longer buys that brand of bacon that was green once before when he bought it.

“In the morning shower, Joe reaches for his shampoo. His bottle is properly labeled with each ingredient and its amount in the total contents, because some crybaby liberal fought for his right to know what he was putting on his body and how much it contained. although Joe doesn’t have any freakin’ idea what is in his shampoo; he just uses the brand that doesn’t irritate his scalp and cleans his hair.

“Joe dresses, walks outside and takes a deep breath. The air he breathes is clean because some environmentalist wacko liberal fought for laws to stop industries from polluting our air.
industries are run by normal people, who also value clean air and have balanced the emission of harmful chemicals with the need to keep the cost of doing business low.

“He walks to the subway station for his government-subsidized ride to work. It saves him considerable money in parking and transportation fees, but he pays much more at tax time,
“because some fancy-pants liberal fought for affordable public transportation, which gives everyone the opportunity to be a contributor, even those who never ride the subway or benefit in any direct way from its existence; even the parking lot attendant and the autoworker. (Incidentally, they both lost their jobs because of a lack of new business).

“Joe begins his work day. He has a good job with excellent pay, medical benefits, retirement, paid holidays and vacation because some lazy liberal union members fought and died for these working standards. he works hard to make himself indispensable. In fact, Joe doesn’t even belong to a union.

“Joe's employer pays these standards because Joe's employer doesn't want his employees to call the union. wants the best workers.

“If Joe is hurt on the job or becomes unemployed, he'll get a worker compensation or unemployment check because some stupid liberal didn't think he should lose his home or go hungry because of his temporary misfortune. he will live off the money he has been diligently saving every week and investing in low-risk stocks and high-yield savings accounts. He also has a privately purchased unemployment insurance policy, commensurate with the risks involved in his job.

“It's noontime and Joe needs to make a bank deposit so he can pay some bills. Joe's deposit is federally insured by the FDIC because some godless liberal wanted to protect Joe's money from unscrupulous bankers who ruined the banking system before the Great Depression. The bank has to pay insurance premiums for FDIC coverage, which lowers the interest rate Joe gets on his savings account, but that’s ok because banks have failed at a higher rate since the Federal Reserve and the federal government started regulating the banking industry and mandating that banks make unprofitable loans.

“Joe has to pay his Fannie Mae-underwritten mortgage and his below-market federal student loan because some elitist liberal decided that Joe and the government would be better off if he was educated and earned more money over his lifetime. The parking lot attendant and the autoworker are happy to help Joe out, even though they have actually suffered because of Joe’s use of these government subsidies; I’m glad to help, too.

“Joe is home from work. He plans to visit his father this evening at his farm home in the country,
unfortunately, it has been condemned by the local government and given to The New York Times for a new branch office.

“He gets in his car for the drive. His car is among the safest in the world because some America-hating liberal fought for car safety standards. he bought a car that wasn’t built by union autoworkers more concerned with mandatory breaks than anti-lock brakes.

“He arrives at his boyhood home, which is now a parking lot for the Times’ building.

“His was the third generation to live in the house financed by Farmers' Home Administration because bankers didn't want to make rural loans. The house didn't have electricity until some big-government liberal stuck his nose where it didn't belong and demanded rural electrification;
of course, Joe’s father thought about forming a co-op with fellow farmers to use wind, solar, and geo-thermal power, but they didn’t want to spend the money when the coal-fueled electricity the government put in is so much cheaper.

“He is happy to see his father, who is now retired and living in the parking lot of the Times building.

“His father lives on Social Security and a union pension because some wine-drinking, cheese-eating liberal made sure he could take care of himself so Joe wouldn't have to; incidentally, Joe pays a few thousand dollars more in payroll taxes every year than his father receives in Social Security benefits.

“Joe gets back in his car for the ride home, and turns on a radio talk show. The radio host keeps saying that liberals are bad and conservatives are good. He doesn't mention that the beloved Republicans have fought against every protection and benefit Joe enjoys throughout his day.

“Joe agrees: “We don't need those big-government liberals ruining our lives! After all, I'm a self-made man who believes everyone should take care of themselves and those they love, just like I have.’”

Joe, I couldn't agree more.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Who is John Galt?

"Whoever you are, you who are hearing me now, I am speaking to whatever living remnant is left uncorrupted within you, to the remnant of the human, to your mind, and I say: There is a morality of reason, a morality proper to man, and Man's Life is its standard of value." - John Galt, Atlas Shrugged.

Jake DeSantis is not John Galt. But he at least recognizes that a bankrupt moral code cannot exist without the consent of the victim and that the victim cannot live a life proper to man if he offers his consent: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/25/opinion/25desantis.html

Monday, March 09, 2009

Stupid or Lying?

It is not clear whether Bill Menezes is lying about assault weapons flowing from the U.S. to Mexico or just too stupid to understand what an automatic weapon is. Read PPC's summary of Menezes's comments and you be the judge: Link

Seems like a little of both to me.

Monday, March 02, 2009

10 things you should know about Obama's plan (but probably don't)

Courtesy of MoveOn.org, 10 things they think you should know about Obama's plan, which they assume you don't know (because, I assume, they think Americans are generally pretty dumb).

I have done some translating.

The plan:

1. Makes a $634 billion down payment (that’s more than half a trillion) on socializing medical insurance in the United States, so Americans can finally enjoy the sub-par care and long lines that Canadians and Britons so appreciate.

2. Reduces income taxes for working Americans (as opposed to non-working Americans who, presumably, could use a little help right now). Note that many of these taxpayers do not, in fact, pay taxes but will still receive tax rebates for taxes they did not pay. And if your family makes more than $250,000, well, don't worry that won't be true for long.

3. Spends more than $100 billion for lobbyists' pet projects that are marketed as "green," destroying millions of non-"green" jobs that would never be outsourced if not for labor laws and the labor union flunkies that run American businesses into the ground.

4. Brings our troops home from Iraq on a firm timetable, which was set by President Bush and the Iraqi government before Mr. Bush left office—so we can finally divert spending from defense to Congressional Democrats' favorite pork barrel projects.

5. Reverses growing income inequality by financially raping the most productive individuals. The plan lets the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans expire and focuses on redistributing the fruits of all the wealthiest Americans' hard work.

6. Closes multi-billion-dollar tax loopholes for corporations, which will now by forced to increase the price of products and services to pay those massive new tax bills.

7. Increases grants to help families pay for college—the largest increase ever. Which will soon be followed by the largest increase in tuition rates—ever.

8. Halves the deficit by 2013, assuming an orchard of money trees starts producing cash. President Obama inherited a legacy of huge deficits and an economy in shambles, but his plan does its best to kill productive activity and keep those deficits growing.

9. Dramatically increases funding for the SEC and the CFTC—the agencies that did such a bang-up job of policing Wall Street these last few years. As the old saw goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If it is broke, don't fix it, just throw more money at it!" Not that investors could have used the reams of public information currently available before investing. Such personal responsibility is unthinkable in the land of rugged individualism.

10. Tells it straight by massively overestimating the size, pace, and extent of the economic recovery, thereby duping us into believing a bloated budget is somehow affordable.

Is this the change you voted for? President Obama has done his part, now we need to do ours.

Vote any Democrats or Republicans who support this budget out of office in 2010 and 2012. It’s change we need.