The Jury Talks Back


Changing the world’s perception of the US

Filed under: Uncategorized — Scott Jacobs @ 8:04 pm

President Obama has done wonders for our image.  From giving region-encoded DVDs to the British PM, to gate-crashers at his first State Dinner, Obama has done nothing but improve how we are viewed in the world.

And he’s at it again.

The American president is acting like an elephant in a porcelain shop,” said Norwegian public-relations expert Rune Morck-Wergeland. “In Norwegian culture, it’s very important to keep an agreement. We’re religious about that, and Obama’s actions have been clumsy. You just don’t say no to an invitation from a European king. Maybe Obama’s advisers are not very educated about European culture, but he is coming off as rude, even if he doesn’t mean to.”

That’s the worst of it, but he also opted to not attend the Peace Center exhibit – something that is traditional for every winner.  I have no idea why Obama would opt out of simply walking through.

Prize winners traditionally open the exhibitions about their work that accompany the Nobel festivities.

Oh.  Well, I suppose I understand, then.  I mean, who wants to walk through an empty exhibit?

h/t to Glenn Reynolds


  1. I am sooooo glad that the dumb hick cowboy president we had is gone.

    Comment by Dr. K — 12/10/2009 @ 12:16 pm

  2. Are you kidding? I’m glad the stupid Norskies are finding out what happens when you lie down with a pig. They asked for all they’re getting and more.

    Comment by nk — 12/10/2009 @ 2:02 pm

  3. Well, as Sister Toldjah noted, 44% of Americans now would prefer to have George Bush back in office when compared to the fine gentleman who is currently our president, while 50% would rather have Mr Obama. Considering President Bush’s ending approval numbers, this is a heck of a turnaround, and in another few months, those who’d rather have Mr Bush back in office will probably outnumber those who like Mr Obama.

    One reason: class shows, and class matters.

    Comment by The Republican Dana — 12/10/2009 @ 4:12 pm

  4. Republican Dana, what are you trying to say? BHO has a lot of class. He went to all the right classes in all the right schools and he has the grades to prove it. Or didn’t you see his coursework and grades?

    Comment by John Hitchcock — 12/10/2009 @ 10:35 pm

  5. Perhaps I should have specified the difference between taking classes and having class.

    Comment by The linguistically precise Dana — 12/11/2009 @ 3:58 pm

  6. The Norskies are finding out how unimportant they are, and that’s not a bad thing.

    Alfred Nobel invented high explosives. And his high explosives killed a lot of people and made him very rich. And he thought he could bribe humanity with his blood money to remember him kindly — maybe God, too. But I doubt he fooled the Devil.

    Comment by nk — 12/11/2009 @ 4:36 pm

  7. Our Windy City barrister wrote:

    Alfred Nobel invented high explosives. And his high explosives killed a lot of people and made him very rich.

    As the mountain is being dynamited to make room for the new bridge project which is keeping me employed, I can see uses for Mr Nobel’s invention that do not involve killing a lot of people.

    Comment by The construction-man Dana — 12/12/2009 @ 7:18 am

  8. And in fact, that was his original intended use for it.

    Sadly all things end up twisted to the purpose of war.

    Comment by Scott Jacobs — 12/12/2009 @ 10:37 am

  9. Heh, Scott, some things end up twisted for the purpose of non-war. GPS, internet, jet tech, rocket tech, nuclear tech.

    Comment by John Hitchcock — 12/12/2009 @ 3:54 pm

  10. When my brother and I were maybe seven and eight, we got hold of some of my father’s blasting powder, the kind that looks like thick black spaghetti. We had fun setting a match to the strands and watching them fly across the room. Thankfully, my father had stored the caps (detonators) separately. He was so relieved we were not hurt, he forgot to beat us.

    Comment by nk — 12/12/2009 @ 5:12 pm

  11. Since we’re talking about breaking things, are the little pockmarks in my concrete driveway, after I put salt on the ice, because of salt’s corrosive properties or because it’s so much colder where the salt melts the ice?

    Comment by nk — 12/13/2009 @ 1:22 pm

  12. This had gone away because Dana (who’s daughter has forsaken me) did a much, much better job than I.

    Comment by Scott Jacobs — 12/13/2009 @ 6:55 pm

  13. Salt causes delamination in two ways. In steel-reinforced concrete, the chloride ions penetrate and start to corrode the steel. Because the corroded steel occupies a larger volume than the original steel, that expansion causes damage to the surrounding concrete.

    On your driveway, which is unlikely to be steel reinforced — though it might have welded wire mesh in it — the cause is different. Concrete for exterior use is air-entrained: a matrix of microscopic air bubbles are deliberately entrained into the concrete mix for freeze-thaw cycle durability. Concrete will absorb water, and the air pockets give the water room to expand when it freezes.

    However, if you use salt, you have a problem. Salt is hygroscopic, which means that it attracts water. You wind up with a salt water slush on your driveway, and you get more water penetration of the concrete surface that from just water alone. Water expands about 9% in volume when it freezes, and if you have too much water absorbed, due to the salt, you have more water in the concrete than the air-entrainment can handle.

    The damage to concrete surfaces is more a function of freeze-thaw cycles than just freezing: if it froze once and stayed that way throughout the winter, there would be far less damage than going through multiple freezing and thawing cycles.

    The quality of the concrete and the placement process have an impact. The American Concrete Institute recommends concrete with a maximum water/cement ratio of .45 for exterior concrete exposed to deicing salts. That is normally a very expensive mix, and rarely used in residential construction. Additionally, finishing crews frequently hurt the concrete quality, both by adding too much water to the mix to ease placement of the concrete, and by spraying water on the top surface of the concrete after placement, to ease the finishing process. The latter is the worse sin: it creates a surface with a significantly higher water/cement ratio that the rest of the concrete, and if finished improperly can create a delamination area about an eighth of an inch below the surface.

    Comment by The concrete professional Dana — 12/13/2009 @ 6:59 pm

  14. One additional problem: even if you don’t use salt on your driveway, your car will bring salt from the roads onto the driveway. Then you’ll see the tire paths as they have a higher concentration of salt residue than the rest of the driveway. You might also see delamination in the shape of your car, as salt drips off the body.

    Comment by The verbose Dana — 12/13/2009 @ 7:02 pm

  15. That was really interesting, Dana.

    Comment by DRJ — 12/13/2009 @ 8:34 pm

  16. Not sure if Mrs Pico would think so! :)

    On Saturday, we had to pick up PFC Pico from her weekend drill. She had told me to get there at 1500, but that turned out to be too early. So, as Mrs Pico, the younger Miss Pico and I were sitting in the truck waiting, and waiting, and waiting, our younger daughter, being bored, looked around the truck for something to read. She came up with my ASTM Concrete Manual of Standards, and started reading it — aloud.

    It didn’t take too long before Mrs Pico was pulling out her hair.

    Comment by The sometimes annoying Dana — 12/14/2009 @ 4:18 am

  17. Her own hair or the daughter’s?

    Comment by nk — 12/14/2009 @ 5:46 am

  18. Her own — then she wanted to hit me, even though I wasn’t the one reading.

    Comment by The Dana who felt terribly threatened. — 12/14/2009 @ 7:03 am

  19. My former future son-in-law wrote:

    This had gone away because Dana (who’s daughter has forsaken me) did a much, much better job than I.

    Well, it kind of is my job, you know. But you did have good advice concerning the sealer.

    Comment by The Army daddy Dana — 12/14/2009 @ 7:12 am

  20. My former future son-in-law wrote:

    I knew it. She’s found someone else.

    And you let it happen. I thought we were friends, dude…

    Comment by Scott Jacobs — 12/14/2009 @ 8:00 am

  21. Well, as it happens, we have power of attorney for her. We got it before she left for BCT, because there were things that needed to get done for her to get back into Penn State when she returned, and there would only be a week between her getting back and the start of school. We had joked that this was so we could divorce anyone she married who we didn’t like, but I suppose it also means we could marry her off, too. Our Windy City barrister will have to confirm that. To the best of my knowledge, she hasn’t “found” someone else, though she does go running a couple days a week with a local Maribe recruiter.

    So, for the right bride price . . . .

    Comment by The mercenary Dana — 12/14/2009 @ 8:18 am

  22. remind me what the price is again?

    I suppose I could set up your home network to be 802.11 n…

    Comment by Scott Jacobs — 12/14/2009 @ 8:27 am

  23. Scott,

    I found you on Twitter, but I forgot to mark ‘follow’, and now I can’t find you. Help!

    Comment by Scott Jacobs' Devotee — 12/14/2009 @ 11:22 am

  24. I suppose you could negotiate the contract on her behalf but like I have told you before, it all goes to her. Traditionally, there is a point in the marriage ceremony when the marriage contract is read out loud and then it’s traditional for the groom to hand the bride the bride price, in gold coins, wrapped in white silk. Sovereigns are preferred.

    Comment by nk — 12/14/2009 @ 12:13 pm

  25. To the best of my knowledge, she hasn’t “found” someone else, though she does go running a couple days a week with a local Maribe recruiter.

    Do the Maribes has a mother ship in orbit?

    Comment by Sabba Hillel — 12/14/2009 @ 3:24 pm

  26. based upon my years in the reserves: drills are never released on time, unless your ride is running late.

    Comment by redc1c4 — 12/14/2009 @ 3:27 pm

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