Sister Swine Flu


Rumors of my blogging demise have been greatly exaggerated :D

I’m not down for the count, but am down for the moment. Thought I was valiantly fighting the common cold this week, but decided to go to the doctor this morning because I was not getting any better, and after tests were run, I hear the big news:

“Your test was flu-positive.”

(Me) “Oh, ok – you mean the seasonal flu?”

“No – H1N1.”

*Stunned look.*

Fortunately, the PA I saw eased my fears on the hype surrounding the swine flu, so I’m calmer about it now than I was when she first hit me with the news.

I’m on three prescriptions, the main one being Tamiflu, one of the side effects of which is mood swings. Lucky for me my mother has the patience of a saint.

And speaking of, I’ve tried to keep family and friends far away from me this week, even going so far as locking my glass door when mom and dad came by and dropped off a few groceries I requested. I asked them to put them on the porch, and mom kept insisting on trying to come in and I (for once) won the battle. I hated doing that.

But I’m here at mom and dad’s now, as they both did not want me to battle this alone over the weekend. I did not have a choice in the matter. Dad had to drive me, as luck would have it my car wouldnt’ start this morning as I was headed out for my appt. Sigh …

My family, friends, and employer have been fantastic through all of this. Totally understanding, and totally not putting any pressure on me to do anything but get some rest and eat plenty of chicken soup (I’m so sick of soup right now – not even going there).

I have slept a vast majority of this week, and today was the first time I had stepped outside into the fresh air outside of taking out my “sick trash” yesterday. Too bad it had to be raining today :(

Mega-props to Anthony and Steve for taking care of my baby while I’ve been under the weather, especially doing so on such short notice. I miss blogging so much, but it takes a lot of energy for me to sit up and do anything for any length of time right now (primarily due to the meds and just flat out being zonked).

I also appreciate very much the well wishes and prayers that have been posted here at the blog and via email. They really do mean alot. I miss y’all and thank you so much for your patience. I hope to be back to normal in a few days, but in the meantime Steve and Anthony will hold down the fort. Even when I do return, it’ll be light because I’ve got a lot of things personally to catch up on as well as a lot of things to catch up on at the 8-5. I will have to learn to pace myself.

Oh, and on Barack Obama winning the Nobel? I’m trying not to think about it. I’m already sick enough.

Later, y’all.

Whither print media?


The Wisconsin Policy Research Institute and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Political Science Department recently released a rather extensive poll of 700 Wisconsin residents. Most of the poll questions were Wisconsin-specific (and covered back at my place), but there was one that asked from where the respondents got most of their news. The crosstabs, which I repeat below so you don’t have to head to pages 63 and 64 (pages 71 and 72 of the PDF version) of the lengthy crosstabs release, are rather “interesting”…

WPRI-UW Media question
Click for the full-sized pic

I first must note a couple of things about this question and its answers:

– It is a question of which single outlet each respondent follows the most-often.
– There isn’t a distinction between local news and national news; I suspect there would be a significant change between the two.
– For the “Internet” category, there is no difference between the web presence of the “traditional” media and web-centric entities such as this place or Politico.
– Since Wisconsin does not have party registration enforced at the polls, the party ID is strictly self-identifying, with “strong” and “weak” Republicans/Democrats being identified with that party, but those who merely “lean” toward one party or the other classified as “Independents”.

That being said, there is a very-interesting age-specific trend with print media. 25.9% of seniors say that they get most of their news from newspapers, with the percentage decreasing to 14.1% among those 36-64 years old, and 7.5% among those 18-35 years old. That does not bode well for the future of print journalism, regardless of the presence of bias.

Specifically for local and state-level news, it does not bode well for those who want to stay informed. If local TV news is anything like it is in Milwaukee, pretty much the only things the TV stations cover before the local newspaper are the weather, sports, and sex-offender stings. That is disturbing because across all groups other than the young, TV is the primary source of news.

As for the bias, there is a reason why newspapers are, as a rule, trending even further to the left. They are the second-most-popular primary source of news among Democrats at 18.5%, while they are near the bottom among “independents” (at 13.8%, it barely tops the radio), and at the absolute bottom among Republicans (12.3%, a full 6.1 points behind third-place Internet). Therefore, they’re servicing those who still pay attention.

I know a lot of people see the Internet as the next big thing for news. As I said before, a plurality of the youth (40.0%) get most of their news through it. Moreover, 24.0% of “independents”, which is second among that group, get most of their news from the Internet. However, I don’t know where the money is to support more than a thimbleful of web operations. A couple of places like The Wall Street Journal, Hot Air, and Right Wing News may be making a little bit of money on their web operations, but those are rather unique situations. Most of the web operations, from media outlets to blogs, don’t make enough money to pay the bills.

Worse, they can’t really charge enough for content to make it worthwhile. I wish I could remember the original source, but I heard on “Wall Street Journal This Morning” a couple weeks back that something as potentially-popular as in-flight Internet cannot be priced at a point where it will be used by enough people to be profitable once the novelty wears off. I can speak from personal experience that, while being able to surf while in the air is nice, I will not pay the $8-$10 it takes to do so on a flight the next time I’m in the air.

I should also note something rather odd with the party ID of those who say they get most of their news from the Internet. Despite the success of the Left online nationwide, only 15.5% of Democrats say they get most of their news from there. That compares rather unfavorably to 18.4% of Republicans and 24.0% of “independents”. That is despite several years of the Left trying to dominate what we call the Cheddarsphere.

Revisions/extensions (7:32 pm Eastern, I think, 10/9/2009) – Thanks for the catch on the typo in the title, liberte. It’s now corrected.

ST update and open thread


I’ve just heard from Our Hostess: She’s still under the weather and needs a couple more days of rest. I suspect a Rahm Emanuel plot….  Sick

I’m snowed under with work for the rest of the afternoon, but SteveEgg might be along later to toss some more red meat …er… posts your way. Until then, I’m declaring an open thread.

Have at!

Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize


President Barack Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize. Congratulations, Mr. President! I’m sure this is a proud moment for you and your family. And, on an occasion like this, I certainly wouldn’t want to say anything churlish…

Oh, who am I kidding? Of course I do! Phbbbttt

Like I wrote when Al Gore won the the prize, you mean this isn’t a joke? Will someone please explain to me what He he has done to earn this accolade? According to the Nobel committee:

“The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 is to be awarded to President Barack Obama for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. The Committee has attached special importance to Obama’s vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons.

“Obama has as president created a new climate in international politics. Multilateral diplomacy has regained a central position, with emphasis on the role that the United Nations and other international institutions can play. Dialogue and negotiations are preferred as instruments for resolving even the most difficult international conflicts. The vision of a world free from nuclear arms has powerfully stimulated disarmament and arms control negotiations. Thanks to Obama’s initiative, the USA is now playing a more constructive role in meeting the great climatic challenges the world is confronting. Democracy and human rights are to be strengthened.

In other words, to translate from the Nobelese, he wins the prize for not being that crazed cowboy, George W. Bush, and for hobbling that rampaging, blundering giant, the United States of America. (You know, the one that in the last eight years liberated 70 million people from two of the worst tyrannies on Earth.) Thus he wins for slipping comfortably into the modern European tradition of appeasement and endless, useless talk, hidden behind the benign masks of “soft power” and “multilateralism.”

By those standards, Neville Chamberlain should get a posthumous award for his contributions to “peace for our time.”

Let’s review a bit of recent history, shall we? Since taking office, President Barack Obama’s contributions to peace have been:

And for the cherry on top of this farcical sundae, winning this award for his role in promoting nuclear disarmament, while hiding his knowledge of Iran’s secret nuclear facility at Qom so it wouldn’t distract from his triumphal appearance at the UN Security Council. When even the French government mocks you for weakness, you know it’s bad.

Promoting peace? The winner of the Nobel peace Prize is making war and turmoil more likely, not less.

While conferring the award on our President (only until January, 2013, we hope) is outrageous, let’s not forget that the Nobel Peace Prize itself is often an outrage. Past winners include these gems:

MOHAMED ELBARADEI (joint winner). He’s done such a nice job with Iran.

WANGARI MAATHAI. The Kenyan ecologist peacefully teaches that the AIDS virus is a biological agent deliberately created by the Man.

JIMMY CARTER JR., former President of the United States of America. A true cosmopolitan, he has undermined the foreign policy of his own country and vouched for the bona fides of tyrants and murderers all over the world.

KOFI ANNAN, United Nations Secretary General. Among other things, they have respectively served as the vehicle for, and presided over, one of the biggest scams in history.

YASSER ARAFAT (joint winner), Chairman of the Executive Committee of the PLO, President of the Palestinian National Authority. He was a cold-blooded murderer both before and after receiving the award.

RIGOBERTA MENCHU TUM, Guatemala. She is the notorious Guatemalan faker and author, sort of, of I, Rigoberta Menchu.

THE UNITED NATIONS PEACE-KEEPING FORCES New York, NY, U.S.A. Notwithstanding rapes and sex abuse committed by the team in Kosovo, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea and the Congo, still doing fine work all over the world.

(List via Power Line. I added the links.)

So the President finds himself in sterling company, his self-image fed another heaping helping of narcissism. Are we sure today isn’t April 1st?

POSTSCRIPT: Saturday Night Live nailed it last week. They should have a field day with this.

LINKS: Oh, lots of folks are writing about this. Among them: Fausta; Rick Moran, who notes Obama had been in office no more than 11 days when nominated; Hot Air, where Ed tells us that the DNC thinks we’re terrorist sympathizers for criticizing this award; William Jacobson wonders if this takes all military options off the table. An intriguing, plausible theory.; Iowahawk finds the award letter and makes us laugh; Harry Reid says Obama earned it and makes us laugh, too.

(Cross-posted at Public Secrets)