Friday, January 18, 2013

NFL Conference Championships

This is a Steeler fan nightmare. Not only did my SB prediction go kaflooey - it turns out my sports prediction is as bad as my Oscar ones - but 3 of the 4 survivors are bad news for Steeler fans. The best I can hope for is a Falcons/Ravens superbowl, and that isn't likely to happen. Every single team I've rooted against in the playoffs have won. EVERY ONE! You could set your watch, or better yet bet your watch, on my rooting interest. Gevalt!

I've said this before but it bears repeating: the Steelers are the best NFL team in the Superbowl era because they're tied for the most SB appearances (8, tied with Dallas) but have the most wins (6). See this wiki page for my data pool.

Two teams now threaten those records, one severely. As it stands, here are the records of the remaining teams, the # of SB, & their win-loss record:

Atlanta Falcons: 1 SB, 0-1 (0.000)
Baltimore Ravens: 1 SB, 1-0 (1.000)
New England Patriots: 7 SB, 3-4 (.429)
San Francisco 49ers: 5 SB, 5-0 (1.000)

Pittsburgh Steelers: 8 SB, 6-2 (0.750)

So if it's a Patriots-49er Superbowl, the most likely scenario, then it's the worst for Steeler fans, because (a) the Patriots will join the elite 8-SB club, which is OK given we share that distinction with the hated cowboys, but (b) if the 49ers win then they will not only have 6 Superbowls but will have a perfect record! AUGH!

What makes this worse is that the Patriots, if they do go to SB 47, will almost definitely lose. This is because of the Spygate Karma Rule. Ya see, I've done my own research and it's clear that Bill Belichick's cheating won the Patriots their 2001, 2003, and 2004 Superbowls. The evidence is overwhelming, albeit circumstantial given Goodall's incompetence, and I can show my data at a later time.

The Karma rule states that they need to lose a SB for every one they cheated in. They have 2 down - and both to the Giants - so they need one more. Which means if they play San Fran they will lose and thus the worst scenario for Steelers has occurred - the Patriots will tie our SB number, the 49ers will tie our wins but have a perfect record.

So even though it hurts to root for the Ravens in the AFC playoff, in the long view, it's better if they win than the hated cheating Patriots. And maybe, just maybe, the Falcons can pull it off. I'm hoping for Atlanta to pull a Bettis for Tony Gonzalez's sake.

Gonzalez is one of the best Tight Ends ever and he's never won a Superbowl. He's likely to retire at any moment. So just like the Steelers rallied to win Superbowl 40 to get Bettis his ring (which is an unparalleled story), maybe Atlanta can do that for Tony.

Note, this sounds like what the Ravens are doing about Ray Lewis except for three things: (1) Lewis won a SB already, (2) Gonzalez is a better person, and (3) the Harbaughs (both) are schmucks and deserve to lose.

Gun Issues Update

Here's some more resources about the ongoing sea-change in the American view about gun ownership and gun violence. It's good to see that at least so far the change is occurring. After Sandy Hook I read many journalists (aka pundits) say with all the idiotic gravitas that they could muster that "there's nothing we can do" about our gun culture. Speaking as a sociologist, I can say that nearly every journalist I have read - on every subject - is at best an educated layman, but more often just a loud ignoramus. So, thank God, the mood is shifting. If we could stop slavery, maybe we can stop this too.

1. This is's "Gun Death Map" - a handy, and shattering, crowdsourced reference guide for current gun deaths.

2. For quick reference, here are Obama's executive actions. Again, thank God, Big B is doing what we elected him to do. I'm seeing a change in his attitude towards congress, something I hoped would happen after his reelection.

What comes out from this list is a demonstration that the NRA maybe the most evil organization in America. Because while the other legal-evil groups - e.g. tobacco, oil - advocate indirect death for their own profit, the NRA is in favor of actual death. They may be more evil than gambling and drug lobbyists (and they exist) for that same reason. Jewish law is pretty clear that the one worst crime is murder, mainly because it can't be reversed.

Why do I say they are the most evil? Because after Sandy Hook the journalists have kicked into gear and are now reporting just how much the NRA has been working to ensure that crazy people can get their hands on mass murder tools. It's stupefying, it's numbing, just how much the NRA has done to allow murder!

The best journalist team is, yet again, the Daily Show. Even though they've gotten worse and worse about Israel (shame on you Stewart!), they are top notch about this issue. See the second video here to be astounded:

3. From Huffpo: Jon Stewart Takes On NRA Over ATF Limitations On Enforcing Existing Gun Laws (VIDEO)

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Wright Leaving Atlantic

Passably good news from the Atlantic, their anti-Semite in chief, Robert Wright, is leaving. I hope he enjoys closing his mouth.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Chuck Hagel - Who They Kidding?

So it looks like the President will be nominating Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense. The buzz is that he's anti-Israel. Is he though? Well, I'll lay out the facts as I can see 'em:

  1. He has not been part of Obama's team before this nomination, as far as I can see. So why does his name come up?  What is the special reason for his candidacy?  Presumably it's because as a Republican he will demonstrate Obama's bipartisanship. But surely his dovishness is part of his appeal.
  2. More troubling are the people who are defending him.  Most are trying to desperately support him while either scoffing at the anti-Israel accusations or at least downplaying them.  And these defenders are often inveterate enemies of Israel.   Steve Clemons and Robert Wright at the Atlantic online are big fans of Hagel and are shocked, shocked!, that someone could accuse Hagel of being anti-Israel.

    According to the Atlantic's James Fallows - who isn't anti-Israel but he's at best tone-deaf about the issue, as I expect most WASPs to be - brings this list of Hagel supporters as a way of showing bipartisan support:
    "See the peeved tone, and the detailed rebuttal, of reactions from the otherwise non-homogenous group of Marsha Cohen, John Judis, Dana Milbank, Peter BeinartDavid Weigel, Andrew Sullivan, Nicholas Kristof**, and Steven Walt. [Update: and Robert Merry and Emily Hauser and Clyde Prestowitz and Steve Clemons and Ali Gharib.]"
    I like Fallows, so I don't want to think he's stupid, but does he seriously think that Steven Walt, Nicholas Kristof, Andrew Sullivan and (sad but true) Peter Beinart are good character references for being pro-Israel?!? The first 3 clearly hate Israel and Beinart hates his Jewishness, and is on published record being no good friend of a Jewish state. So, yeah. This is a bad list
Basically, this is a 'who are they kidding' moment. I hate to say it, because I am an Obama supporter, and I can only give the benefit of the doubt for so long. But it's clear to me that Hagel is being nominated purely because he's a dovish Republican. That is, Obama (or whoever's idea this is) WANTS Hagel's dovishness and hopes that his being a Republican will make him acceptable across the board. This is the same cockeyed thinking that gave us John Kerry as the Democratic nominee in 2004.

I am very disappointed with this, because it shows not only bad faith towards Israel, but it shows disrespect to our intelligence. And, I should say, that Hagel's ideas are themselves stupid or evil, as almost everyone who is Anti-Israel has been shown to be.

Friday, January 04, 2013

NFL Playoff Predictions

The top 4 are likely to be Broncos, Patriots & Seahawks, Packers. I would love to see a Broncos vs 'Niners Superbowl because this year the AFC looks dominant (i.e. the AFC best is better than NFC's) and I need the niners to lose a Superbowl. It's all about them being 1.000 in Superbowls (5 of 5) and if they win another one without losing then they'll have as many wins as the Steelers but a better record.

In any case, I believe the 2 best teams are the Broncos and Seahawks and that's who I'd predict for the last round.

As for tomorrow and Sunday, I can't really tell. I know what I'd like, I'd like the Ravens and Bengals to both lose, but that may not happen.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Itunes Idiocy

Microsoft finally "upgraded" (an Orwellian term) Windows Media Player so many times that it finally became useless. So a few years ago I switched to Itunes since Mac controls music now (as I painfully found out when I got an Ipod years back, before that hunk of junk broke in a few months). I'm very serious about my music collection and I was sad to see that Itunes isn't very good. Observe this list:

Things Itunes doesn't do that I really liked from WMP:
A. Enable deleting missing files en masse
B. Very easy to change song data en masse
C. Background process to consolidate and organize the music library.

I've been searching for a long time for simple fixes. Sure, the simplest would be for Apple - for an ironic twist - to copy what Microsoft does well, instead of the vice versa. I could buy third party software, but hell hasn't frozen yet. Recently I got fed up enough that I renewed my efforts to solve 'em with online advice. Here's what I found:

A. Finding and Deleting Files En Masse

I found online advice and it actually worked! How To Remove Broken Songs From iTunes Library It also clued me into the glory of "smart playlists" - which makes up for the very irritating itunes interface. Thanks intertube stranger!

B. Change Multiple Names at Once

You can change song titles, artists etc, but NOT THE SONG NAME. Why can't it be done? Hatred?

So here's my homemade solution which WORKS! Alert!

My solution is to use the powerful search function of Windows 7. I discovered that you can change song data in Windows via "Properties."

For example, I have a lot of bootleg albums of Led Zeppelin (which I've been assured is completely legal). And I want to change the song name from "Moby Dick" to "Moby Dick (Live)"

It helps if you have one Music folder (I did this even though itunes refuses to sort them easily, see below) but I guess it can be done if music is scattered all about.
  1. In the search box (F3) of your folder, I entered: "album:live artists:zeppelin"
  2. sort by song title
  3. higlight the songs you want to change
  4. right click for 'properties'
  5. click on the 'details' tab
  6. go to the field you want to change, in my case it's 'title'
  7. insert new title
  8. click OK or Apply
  9. enjoy a milk bone in a commie free world
Addendum: Actually there's a slight glitch in that Itunes did not recognize the new file names until I played the song (or some other such modification). So my trick was to find all the files whose names I changed and then adjust their rating to 1 star (or whatever) and that updated the names.
C. Consolidate the Library There's an option in Itunes already to do this but it retains the original locations as well, which means you need to have space memory in the computer to have 2 sets of files. I'm not a fan of that, so I'll keep searching. UpdateHere's another version of the milkbone cartoon.