In the first bit of hard news out of Government Motors (formerly: General Motors), sometimes known as UAW Motors, the official end to the Saturn line of cars was announced.
Too bad, they were decent automobiles, I owned a used one for a while and my daughter drove it while an undergrad in college.
Saturn probably developed more die-hard followers than any GM-branded automobile, and their most recent ad wants you to continue believing that. The smiling gentleman in the Star Trek shirt DOES speak to your brand loyalty.
When "New GM" was foisted off on the world earlier this year, Saturn was sold to Penske, Inc. Roger Penske, better known for his auto racing endeavors, and a very successful truck rental fleet man to boot, bought the company on the condition that he could find another manufacturer to make the vehicles as is and also develop new automobiles to sell.
It was a tall order, and it never happened. I don't think that the first condition has ever been met outside of military vehicle production, and even then the specialty vehicles are usually made by one manufacturer. The second condition might have been possible, but there would have been a gap of several years for the Saturn system to weather between the cancellation of this years' vehicles and the next models, and such gaps are impossible to bridge.
The "automotive writers of Associated Press" put together a story on Saturn's demise, but strangely enough, in that story, there is no mention of how the profitable division came to such a sorry pass.
Blame the UAW for that, but, strangely enough, you won't see any mention of the union in the above story. UAW members built Saturn vehicles, but from the get-go in the eighties, the union had a monetary interest in the whole Division. For an exercise in obfuscation, Google up "GM Saturn UAW" and see what hits you get. ALL of the first two pages of hits are about union troubles. NONE of those articles by various auto magazines and other interested writers has a single good thing to say about the union OR the "Breakthrough" agreement it signed with GM and the Saturn Division.
The UAW killed Saturn years ago, by destroying the labor-management detente that had built the expensive Spring Hill, TN plant where the cars were originally made. In recent years, the cars were built as orphans in various other GM plants, evidently under the standard UAW labor contract, not under the "visionary" contract that built the Division.
In a strange twist of fate, the entire fate of "New GM" now rests on the creation of a new labor-management detente similar to the one which failed at the Saturn Division. When Barney Frank and Tim Geithner broke up the old GM after rescuing it with taxpayer largesse, they simply handed the majority of the stock in the "New GM" to the UAW. The UAW owns Government Motors now, and is responsible for what happens to it's management direction.
It stands to reason that the UAW could have prevailed on it's members to build the cars at GM plants in a side agreement with Penske, or could have urged other of it's members to build them in a renewal of the detente, at another manufacturer.
But no, the UAW let Saturn die. There was no way that Roger Penske could have pulled off this miracle without the help of the UAW, and as an astute businessman, he must have taken some assurances of the UAW people with him when he signed on to the agreement to buy Saturn.
It's pretty obvious now that those were false assurances.
If I can come up with this tale of perfidy in less than an hour, why couldn't the entire Associated Press do it in the weeks and days which they must have had? (ED. NOTE: The AssPress must have read either my mind or my blog, because they have come out with a more detailed story, but they still pretend the UAW doesn't exist).
The answer, folks, is that the Associated Press is bought and paid for by the Left, and the Left would never allow a story to cast one of it's major players, the UAW, in a bad light. This story couldn't have been written WITHOUT showing the UAW in a bad light, and the AssPress just couldn't pull that trigger, so they lied by omission in their article.
Watched most of this docu-drama on the History Channel last night. It's a scary thought, translating the Islamic hatred of our nation into fingers on the trigger of a nuclear weapon, but someone has to think those thoughts to stay ahead of the splodey-dopes.
The show postulates that the islamo-fascists have smuggled some enriched uranium into the US, and have constructed a simple, "gun-type" 10-kiloton bomb. They set the bomb off in front of the Capitol on a Monday morning at 0930.
Note to H/C writers: Congress will likely NOT be in session on Mondays, so not ALL of Congress would die in the blast.
The show did an excellent job of getting into the actual extent of the damage from thermal shock and blast, then radiation effects. It detailed as to how the most seriously-damaged zone will not have any rescue attempts made into it, and how we would lose a lot of rescuers trying to rescue in the next circle outwards, etc.
The show added up the numbers, which are horrifying: 15,000 vaporized in the fireball, and another 15K killed outright by thermal and intense radiations of several kinds, then maybe twice that number die in the first hour afterward of radiation overdose, then maybe ten times that many eventually from all causes, chiefly radiation.
Then the show got somewhat bogged down in the reconstitution of government, and how it is meticulously planned for (has been for about 30-40 years now). There are idiotic portrayals of fleets of limos and "war wagons" screaming outwards on EMPTY ROADS to the reconstitution centers (those road will NOT be empty, and the show correctly pointed out that most regional residents will take to the roads to flee the radiation zone).
It seems that the intent of the entire show was a fifties-style attempt to assure everyone that life would go on, like the "duck and cover" drills I did as a school kid back then were meant to reassure my parents, not actually prepare me for survival in a nuclear holocaust.
I didn't see the last half-hour of the show, so maybe they actually included advice to those whose region has just been nuked, but I found the show distinctly NOT useful for the average person.
Watch it, it comes again on October 4th. Maybe you'll get more out of it than I did.
The GOP is about to yield the health care debate to the (D)onks. The Stupid Party is playing the religion card, and the religion card plays to a MAXIMUM of 35% of the voters.
The abortion debate manages to divide the Right every time it is brought up, because the schism between those who believe the individual woman is the ONLY one who can chose whether or not to continue a pregnancy, and the Christian half of the Right, which believes that there is something miraculous about a pregnancy and it is immoral to terminate it once it starts, except by birthing, is a guaranteed loser of any fight where something bigger is at stake.
Let me say this loud and clear, people of the Right: the very existence of your Constitutional Republic is at stake in this health care fight. If your Constitution goes away, as it will if the (D)emocrats get their way here, you will not only lose the abortion fight, you will lose your COUNTRY.
Now, end this silly and fractious abortion fight, and get back to the serious and united opposition needed to win.
That's an order. There are some hard men (and a few hard women) who will shove you aside and wrest this nation back from the gates of Hell if you fail, but if that happens, it will be an ugly time, and it will be written as an ugly chapter in our history. This fight can be won without bloodshed, but ONLY if we on the Right all pull together for our Constitution, not for the Bible.
H/T to GuyK, somewhere on I-10, headed for a month of fishin' for the Big Cats
If a conservative doesn’t like guns, they don’t buy one. If a liberal doesn’t
like guns, then no one should have one.
If a conservative is a
vegetarian, they don’t eat meat. If a liberal is, they want to ban all meat
products for everyone.
If a conservative sees a foreign threat, he
thinks about how to defeat his enemy. A liberal wonders how to surrender
gracefully and still look good.
If a conservative is homosexual, they
quietly enjoy their life. If a liberal is homosexual, they loudly demand
If a black man or Hispanic is conservative, they see
themselves as independently successful. If a black man or Hispanic is a
liberal, they see themselves as victims in need of government
If a conservative is down-and-out, he thinks about how to
better his situation. A liberal wonders who is going to take care of
If a conservative doesn’t like a talk show host, he switches
channels. Liberals demand that those they don’t like be shut down.
a conservative is a non-believer, he doesn’t go to church. A liberal wants
any mention of God or religion silenced.
If a conservative decides he
needs health care, he goes about shopping for it, or may choose a job that
provides it. A liberal demands that his neighbors pay for his.
These are all pretty much on the money, except for the factor of hypocrisy. For example, in the gun rights comparison above, wealthier liberals frequently HAVE guns, or employ bodyguards who do, and yet they STILL want to deny others that basic right.
Pitch YOUR favorite hypocrisy into the 'ol comments bin.
Tip of the chapeau to T-Bone, out in Montana country.
The quality of this blog has suffered of late, and I apologize to readers for that.
The reason is that my health has taken a turn for the worse. Doing the close, confined-space work in my boat several weeks ago set me up for a major back attack (lumbar strain, spasms, etc), which I've only begun to come out of, but I never completely recovered before an attack of arthritis in my hip laid me low again. It's hard to write while in a fine Flexeril fog. It's hard to even work up the desire to blog or keep up with the blogosphere in this state.
I should pull out of this skeletal malaise sometime this week.
BTW, I am doing acupuncture now, on several trusted family-members' advice. It seems to help. I don't cotton to the mysticism involved with Eastern therapies, but I can appreciate the reality of relief, and it DOES relax all the muscles that are getting confused impulses from squashed nerve bundles in my lower spine.
Have patience, the previous vitriol will be restored to this little corner of sanity.
It's not on their Web page, but last night, during the 11pm news, Fox affiliate KPTV here in PDX reported on a story out of Rhode Island where a couple of kids got ahold of a parent's AK-47 and went around the neighborhood "playing war". The kids had no ammo, the weapon was unloaded, so no damage was done. The junior soldiers' foray ended when a citizen took the gun from them and turned it in at a police station.
OK, pretty much a straightforward story, up until the place where the KPTV reporter referred to the AK as a "machine gun".
Skipped right by the usual and incorrect "assault rifle" and got right to the heart of being wrong, she did.
In case you think that Fox News, being somewhat less in the tank for the Left, has any better grasp on the reality of gunny things, you'd be wrong, too.
I don't know whether the "distinguished" Oregon State University prez was fooling us to get folks to read his screed, or not, but that headline is the stupidest thing I've seen yet. The recession is NOT over, and may just be warming up before we jump into a Depression. Wall Street is, as I write, on a hover, waiting to see what additional deficit-boosting tomfoolery Congress is going to come up with. The day-traders are the only investors out there, and they live in a micro-world, not the real world.
The Perfesser just doesn't get it. As a lot, Oregonians are socially liberal and fiscally conservative, and the political libs who run this benighted state just don't get that. They figger that if we are socially liberal (present company excluded), we must also be fiscally liberal.
Doesn't work that way, Perfesser, and the sooner the Halls of Academe understand that, the sooner that they can pass it along to their students, the future leaders of Oregon.
Most folks who fly regularly know that just two or three people on the plane with an active cold or flu virus can, and DO, infect many other fellow passengers. The reason for this is that the airlines recycle the cabin air after the plane is pressurized (strictly to save a few dollars), and any airborne droplets containing the virus just keep circulating and the un-infected traveler breathes them in.
The solution to that is, do not fly. If you have to fly, some (I'm one) take a nostrum called "Airborne" or it's clones. I think it works, and there might be a study or two saying it helps. It's not a panacea (infallible).
There's another reason the valuable quarterback Tebow got a separate plane to ride in. It has to do with pressure changes. While the usual airliner flight plan is Point A to Point B, direct, the usual altitude plan is to fly at the most efficient altitude, usually at least 28,000 feet. The cabin would be pressurized to 7,700 feet, and the re-pressurizing of the cabin can cause a sinus block, PLUS it exacerbates any infected sinus, spreading the infection to ALL your sinus cavities and your inner ear cavities as well.
It's possible to fly an aircraft from Florida to Kentucky, by a roundabout route, never getting over about 2,500 feet, and thereby not having the major insult to the sinuses.
THAT'S why Tim Tebow got his own airplane.
Kudos to the Florida Gator football staff for having the smarts to use the talents of a trained Aviation Physiologist. Not many programs would think that deeply.