The Mother Of All Volcanoes

If this sucker blows up real good, life in the United States is pretty much over as we know it. Of course, there’s nothing you can do to prevent it and not much you can do to prepare for it. So, like a meteor strike, there’s not much point in worrying about it.

Could Yellowstone National Park’s caldera super-volcano be close to eruption?

Scientists are predicting that the world’s largest super-volcano in one of America’s most popular national parks could erupt in the near future.

Yellowstone National Park’s caldera has erupted three times in the last 2.1million years and researchers monitoring it say we could be in for another eruption.

They said that the super-volcano underneath the Wyoming park has been rising at a record rate since 2004 – its floor has gone up three inches per year for the last three years alone, the fastest rate since records began in 1923.

It would explode with a force a thousand times more powerful than the Mount St Helens eruption in 1980.

Spewing lava far into the sky, a cloud of plant-killing ash would fan out and dump a layer 10ft deep up to 1,000 miles away.

Two-thirds of the U.S. could become uninhabitable as toxic air sweeps through it, grounding thousands of flights and forcing millions to leave their homes.

See also:
Yellowstone Has Bulged as Magma Pocket Swells
Ground at Yellowstone Caldera Swells Dramatically
Trouble at Yellowstone?
Yellowstone Caldera Causes Ground to Swell
How the Supervolcano Underneath Yellowstone Will Wipe Us Out
Could The World’s Oldest Volcano Wipe Out More Than 50% Of The US?
The Yellowstone Super Volcano
Yellowstone Is Rising on Swollen “Supervolcano”
When Yellowstone Explodes
Yellowstone Volcano Observatory

And lucky me, I live within the outer edge of the potential, initial “ash zone”. Multiple feet of snow is bad enough, but several feet of ash wouldn’t be cool at all.

/however, I have no fear, because under Obama’s stellar leadership, much like a major terror attack, we would, no doubt, be able to “absorb” it

The New Pig Book Is Here, The New Pig Book Is Here!

It’s a bipartisan effort, Republicans are just as bad as Democrats. Take a look at who’s flushing your hard earned tax dollars down the hog trough.

Cochran Leads Congress in Earmarks, $16.5B Total Set Aside for Pet Projects in 2010

Drumroll, please.

And the king of pork is … Sen. Thad Cochran. The Mississippi Republican ranks at the top this year of the Citizens Against Government Waste’s list of congressional earmarkers.

Cochran, the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee, is typically a leading pork-seeker and in 2010 had his name on 240 projects worth $490.2 million The runner-up was Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, with 151 projects worth $387.5 million.

Taken together, earmarked projects in fiscal year 2010 accounted for $16.5 billion of the federal budget. Leading the the 50 states was Hawaii, which enjoyed $251 per capita, thanks in large part to the help of Inouye. On the House side, Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D., took home the gold with 50 projects worth $148.4 million.

Citizens Against Government Waste President Tom Schatz said Cochran has earned the nickname of “Thad the Impaler” for his persistent earmarking.

“Senator Cochran has been number one for three years in a row and his total exceeds $2 billion during that three-year period of time,” he said.

The good news was the number of earmarks declined — the 9,129 projects listed marked about a 10 percent decline from last year. But that’s still more than 15 times the number of projects when Citizens Against Government Waste first started tracking in 1991.

And according to the annual “Congressional Pig Book” released Wednesday by the watchdog group, some oddball projects were on the receiving end. Shrimp research, local museums and military projects that even the Pentagon didn’t want were among the beneficiaries this year of billions of dollars in pork-barrel spending, according to the guide.

Here’s a look at some of the more peculiar projects on the extensive “Pig Book” list:

— Shrimp must be in vogue this year. The budget set aside $2.9 million in seven states for shrimp aquaculture research. Elsewhere in the budget was $700,000 requested by several senators and representatives for fishing research by the Southern Shrimp Alliance.

— Five senators and four representatives across four states requested $2.6 million for potato research. Along those lines, several lawmakers also set aside $775,000 for the Institute for Food Science and Engineering, which, as CAGW notes, has a program for researching “Pickle Science and Technology.”

— The wool industry has attracted millions in funding over the past decade and 2010 was no different. Montana, Texas and Wyoming were the recipients of $206,000 for wool research.

— Talk about a war on drugs. Among the projects requested by Cochran was $500,000 for the University of Southern Mississippi for a cannabis eradication program.

— The Camden Police Department, which reportedly was not eligible for stimulus funding because of prior grant violations, was awarded $200,000 in earmarks from New Jersey’s two senators, Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, for a Mobile Communications Center.

The Pentagon was awarded billions for programs Defense Secretary Robert Gates spoke out against as unnecessary. One earmark worth $2.5 billion was for 10 C-17 cargo jets. Another was worth $465,000 for development of a Joint Strike Fighter alternative engine. Lawmakers fought administration attempts to cut those programs out of concern over lost jobs.

— Somehow, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate also made its way into the defense budget. The institute is expected to include exhibits, classrooms and a replica of the U.S. Senate chambers — at a price of $18.9 million.

— Local museum and educational center funding was also popular this past year. The budget included $100,000 for the Cabot’s Pueblo Museum in Desert Hot Springs; $250,000 for the Wistariahurst Museum in Massachusetts; $500,000 for the Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; and another $500,000 for the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque, Iowa.

— Several educational campaigns also received funding. Among them was $250,000 for an anti-steroids awareness program at the I Won’t Cheat Foundation in Salt Lake City.

And that’s just the tip of the pork iceberg. Read The 2010 Pig Book for yourself and pick out your own favorite nauseating examples of tax money wasted on hog[expletive deleted].

The Congressional Pig Book is CAGW’s annual compilation of the pork-barrel projects in the federal budget. The 2010 Pig Book identified 9,129 projects at a cost of $16.5 billion in the 12 Appropriations Acts for fiscal 2009. A “pork” project is a line-item in an appropriations bill that designates tax dollars for a specific purpose in circumvention of established budgetary procedures. To qualify as pork, a project must meet one of seven criteria that were developed in 1991 by CAGW and the Congressional Porkbusters Coalition.

Complete Pork Database: Search all 9,129 projects by keyword, member, state, party or appropriations bill.

Features: Oinker Awards | State Rankings | Historical Trends | All About Pork

See also:
2010 Pig Book Summary
Citizens Against Government Waste
Earmark Spending $16.5 Billion in CAGW’s 2010 Congressional Pig Book
“Pig Book” released today details members of congress’ pork requests
The 2010 Congressional Pig Book: 20 Years at the Trough
68M For Ind. Among Earmarks Flagged In ‘Pig Book’
Rep. Yvette Clarke Wins Award in CAGW’s 2010 Pig Book
Pig book shows earmark reduction
Watchdog group finds smaller servings of congressional pork

Okay, so $16.5 billion is hardly a drop in the overall budget bucket and it’s good that the Congressional hogs pigged out on fewer earmarks than last year. But damn it, $16.5 BILLION IS REAL MONEY, IT’S YOUR HARD EARNED TAX MONEY, OR BORROWED FROM THE CHINESE, AND THESE CORRUPT MORONIC BASTARDS ARE SPENDING IT ON RIDICULOUS, UNNECESSARY BULL[EXPLETIVE DELETED]!

/inform yourself, pay attention to who’s wastefully spending America into economic oblivion, and vote accordingly in November

Boy Do We Ever

Bush billboard in north metro asks “Miss me yet?”

A billboard with a picture of former president George W. Bush and the question “Miss me yet?” is getting a lot of attention in the north metro–not only for its message but because of the mystery of who’s paying for it.

The billboard is located off northbound Interstate 35 in Wyoming. It went up about one month ago.

Schubert and Hoey Outdoor Advertising of Minneapolis owns the billboard. The company’s general manager said that a group of small business owners in the metro rented the space. She wouldn’t reveal the identities of those business owners or how much they paid.

Businesses in the area said customers are commenting on the sign.

Sara Chouinard, who works at the Nesting Grounds coffee house said, “We’ve heard from quite a few customers about it. Some people think it’s pretty amusing. And other people find it insulting.”

Wyoming Mayor Sheldon Anderson said people have contacted him about the billboard.

Anderson said, “I’ve had people willing to donate money to keep the billboard up, but again I don’t have anything personally to do with it.”

Some people who have seen the sign said they can’t tell if its message is pro-Bush, anti-President Barack Obama or something else.

See also:
George Bush is back… on Minn. billboard, anyway
Bush Billboard In Minn.: ‘Miss Me Yet?’
Bush billboard on I-35: “Miss me yet?”
The George Bush Billboard: ‘Miss Me Yet?’
‘Miss me yet’ billboard shows power of outdoor ads in Internet age
Bush “Miss Me Yet?” Billboard Appears Near Highway
George W. Bush “miss me yet?” billboard derails day for MPR’s Bob Collins
‘Miss Me Yet?’ Billboard With Photo Of Bush Is Real; Not An Internet Trick
Who’s Behind the Bush Billboard?

/a big thumbs up to whoever paid for this billboard