novatownhall blog

Where you are held accountable for your convictions and record

Dale Earnhardt Jr Victory In Michigan

Almost lost in the excitement of Tiger’s dramatic win at Torrey Pines was the fact that Dale Earnhardt Jr won the Michigan 400, his first victory since 2006.

As a kid I did not really appreciate the strategic “fuel mileage” victories – I always wanted to see a flat out dash to the finish. But now the fuel mileage race is as interesting to me as most others. There are so many variables, so many moving parts, to putting together a NASCAR victory: driver, pit crew, machinery, drafting, and definitely fuel management. The entire process of making a green flag pit stop can cause such a huge shakeup in the field because the efficiency of the slow-down prior to entering pit road has as much an impact on the car’s eventual position on the track as the quickness of the pit stop itself. It’s fascinating how such subtle vicissitudes can result in such substantial changes on the race track. Similarly, on those tracks where fuel management can come into play, after the halfway point the crew chief can start calculating fuel mileage backwards from the end of the race, get the car out of sequence from the rest of the field, and have a decent shot at stealing a win by having his driver running at top speed for the last 20 or 30 laps while the leaders have to hit the pits for a quick top-off of fuel.

That’s exactly what Tony Eury Jr. pulled off for his driver on Sunday – though just barely. A caution with two or three laps to go meant that Dale Jr. had to stay out on the track for two more laps than expected (so NASCAR could provide a green-white-checkered competitive finish of two laps after the 400 miles were completed). Two laps at Michigan is four miles, which requires roughly a gallon more fuel than calculated. Dale had to cruise practically on the grass during the caution laps to shorten the distance, turn the car on and off repeatedly to do the maximum coasting possible, and then hope against hope that there were enough fumes in the gas line to permit two laps of full-speed racing.

It worked, though Dale ran out of gas on the way to Victory Lane. Good, suspenseful action.

There was some controversy over the fact that Dale, in his shut-off, switch-on caution laps zipped ahead of the pace car twice, and was not punished for it. But no one would have been punished for such a minor violation, in my view. NASCAR can be strict, but I’ve never seen a driver punished for a couple incidental violations of that nature.

Dale is having a heck of a year in his first season with Hendrick Motorsports. In terms of Cup points, it is his best year ever so far and a vindication of his decision to leave DEI. Good weekend for TV sports.

In the communist Post today was a story about faith based drugstores starting to crop up around the states.  One will actually be opening soon in Chantilly.  This is nothing more that an alternative to your society stores that also carry the profanity magazines as well “other” sexual aids.  Here in part is the article.

“The United States was founded on the idea that people act on their conscience-that they have a sense of right and wrong and do what they think is right and moral” said Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel at the Thomas More Society, a Chicago public interest law firm that was fined and reprimanded for refusing to fill prescriptions for birth control pills.  “Every pharmicist has the right to do the same thing,” Brejcha said.

But critics say the stores could create dangerous obstacles for women seeking legal, safe and widely used birth control methods.  “I’m very, very troubled by this,” said Marcia Greenberger of the National Women’s Law Center, a Washington advocacy group.  “Contraception is essential for women’s health.  A pharmacy like this is walling off an essential part of health care.  That could endanger women’s health.”

Say WHAT?  This is liberal speak for ” we got to ban guns because they are a public health risk.”  Yeh, I get it.  Here’s more.

Some pro-life pharmicies are identical to typical drugstores except that they do  not stock some or all forms of contraception.  Others also refuse to sell tobacco, rolling papers or pornography.

Some critics question how such pharmicies justify carrying drugs, such as Viagra, for male reproduction issues, but not those for women.  “Why do you care about the sexual health of men but not women?” asked Anita L. Nelson, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.  “If he gets his Viagra, why can’t she get her contraception?”

Viagra is a contraceptive?  Oh, please tell me it’s not soooooo!

“in general, I think product differentiation expressive of differing value is a very good thing for a free, pluralistic society,” said Loren E. Lomasky, a bioethicist at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.  “If we can have 20 different brands of toothpaste, why not a few different conception of how pharmicies ought to operate?”

Others maintain that pharmicists, like other professionals, have a responsibility to put their patients’ needs ahead of their of their personal beliefs.  “If you are a health care professional, you are bound by professional obligations,” said Nancy Berlinger, deputy director of the Hastins Center, a bioethics think tank in Garrison, N.Y.  “You can’t say you won’t do part of that profession.”

Excuse me?  You mean that anyone that takes the hippocratic oathe should violate the oathe and their own beliefs so that you could, say, have an abortion because it is legal to do so?

What is being said from the opposition is that they want it their way.  How dare we try to have any morals or seek to cater to a specific group.  Get this:

Critics also worry that women might unsuspectingly seek contraceptives at such a store and be humiliated, or that women NEEDING the morning-after pill, which is most effective when used quickly, may waste PRECIOUS time.  “Rape victims could end up in a pharmacy not understanding this pharmacy will not meet their needs,” Greenberger said.  STOP!  What is a rape victim doing in a pharmacy?  They should be at the hospital or police station.  Rape is a crime-not a wound in need of some antiseptic and a band-aid! Continue.  ” We’ve seen an alarming developement of pharmicists over the last several years refusing to fill precriptions…”  (What kind of prescriptions would that be?)

You get the gist.  Now let the fun begin.  I say if you’re Chik-filet and you don’t want to do business on Sunday for religious reasons then GOD bless you!

Tiger Woods Third Shot On 18th Hole

I did not get to watch much of today’s round but what I saw was stunning. Tiger Woods, along with everyone else, plodded through the fourth day at Torrey Pines using his best skills and mettle to linger around par. In the end, Woods’ 12-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole was necessary to force a playoff 5th round of 18 holes tomorrow with Rocco Mediate.

In an interview after finishing with a very nice 68 on the day, Phil Mickelson opined the course was fair and forgiving enough that a very low round might be possible. That turned out not to be the case for any of the leaders, all of whom struggled to stay close to even. There were few if any miracles from any of the top five or six, but they all stayed within two or three shots of each other for the entire day. Woods’ closing birdie, the final shot of the tournament in regulation, was no miracle, but on a day when bogies were plentiful and birdies relatively rare, it was dramatic – and all the more so because it demonstrated that Tiger even on a bad day, one which began with a double bogey, will not be easily shaken off.

Tomorrow’s playoff promises to be a classic confrontation between the indefatigable Woods and the likable-yet-unheralded Mediate. Wish I did not have to work!

No, I not talking about Marines.  I’m talking about fathers.  We’re not quite “few” yet, but we are getting fewer and fewer, relatively speaking.

According to the Census Bureau, in 1970, 55.8% of families had children under the age of 18.  That was down to 47% in 2006.  Of those families with children in 1970, only 10% were female householders with no spouse present.  That grew to 23% by 2006.  Far too many “fathers” are fathers in name only.  It is hard to be a real father when you only see your children on alternate weekends.

…and never the twain shall meet.

Of course, Kipling was, as usual, writing about India, but this article, by Ian Buruma, discusses some fundamental differences between the oriental and occidental cultures.  Particularly, he notes,

Why are French, British and American warships, but not Chinese or Malaysian warships, sitting near the Burmese coast loaded with food and other necessities for the victims of Cyclone Nargis?

Why has the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) been so slow and weak in its response to a natural calamity that ravaged one of its own members?

continue reading…

Man, anybody who says watching golf championships is not the greatest slack-ass form of passive entertainment the world has ever known is lying to themselves and to the universe at large.

U.S. Open Day Two

Tiger came back from a so-so 72, one above par the first day, with a fantastic 3-under 68 on day two – accomplished via a blistering 30 on the back nine, bad knee and all.

He is one behind Stuart Appleby, but riding a level of momentum that has got to have everyone else in the tournament once again performing personal gut checks. The weekend should be good.

Yes, I am back, ready to kick more booty and take even yet more names.

Here’s what happened: Late Wednesday night, an automatic “Windows Update” of XP Professional kicked in while I was not looking, and rebooted my Toshiba A210 laptop. My computer automatically rebooted, and after that, the wireless adapter would not work.

I rebooted our wireless router, rebooted the computer, and still got zero connectivity. Up until this point, the Toshiba had been flawless since I bought it late last year.

Losing the wireless adapter would have been a huge problem because it is the only convenient way I can get online at home, and being forced to blog solely via my ethernet connection at work would have certainly reduced my participation here to little-old-lady levels, to say the least. I rarely begin to blog before 11:00 pm.

But the solution was a simple one, which I hold out as one which all of us poor stooges locked into Microsoft operating systems should be intimately aware of.

The trick is to bring your computer back to the previous “working” configuration.

On the Toshiba, this means right at startup (when you are presented with the option of pressing F2 for BIOS configuration) press F8, and choose “last known good configuration.” This will reverse the nefarious Windows update and bring your computer back to a working state. I had to move my “NETGEAR” home network back the top of the stack of “available wireless networks” and was back in business.

I suggest the next step is to find out how to turn off automatic Windows updates, and will post that whenever I figure it out. Whatever Microsoft purportedly assayed to accomplish with their forced update, I am going to bravely declare I will live without. Which I would love to be able to say about their whole company someday. But for now the lesson is, beware the automatic Windows update.