Wednesday, January 27, 2010

signs USA is rotting

As if you really need any more.
Supreme Court rolls back campaign cash limits
WASHINGTON - In a landmark ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday struck down laws that banned corporations from using their own money to support or oppose candidates for public office.

By 5-4 vote, the court overturned federal laws, in effect for decades, that prevented corporations from using their profits to buy political campaign ads. The decision, which almost certainly will also allow labor unions to participate more freely in campaigns, threatens similar limits imposed by 24 states.

It leaves in place a ban prohibiting corporations and unions from directly contributing funds to candidates for any use. link
In layman's terms, big oil like Exxon Mobil, private military companies like Blackwater Worldwide, pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer, special interest tools like lobbyists can literally choose the next president of the US, not that they weren't trying before.

While this looks like a small step towards what I just claimed above, the lack of comprehension among ordinary citizens, silence on media, apathy between law-makers disturb me to no end.

Like farm pigs, wolfing down their artificial feed, oblivious to the slaughter ahead.

This is the direct opposite of democracy. The USA is the corporation that is too big to fail now, until it systematically collapses.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

beauty, thy name is HSV-010

The most beautiful non-production car for a long while. It looks better than Lexus LF-A, Mercedes Benz SLS gullwing, dare I say Ferrari 458 Italia. But does it perform better than aforementioned? We'll never know. For shame!

suggestion: turn up the volume

Honda, give us a production model!

Monday, January 18, 2010

2010 Cayman

Back to one of my current favorites Porsche Cayman. 2010 model hasn't changed much. From 2009 on it's gained an option of an LSD, to me the absolute, single most important thing for a serious ride like this.

What's new 2010 Cayman (Cayman S)

I got my gloves on one, so here goes my firsthand review.
-PDK (Porsche double clutch) a breeze
-PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) real world useful
-allows you to go like stink (Mr Hyde mode- sport, sport plus)
-civilized, settles into city traffic (Dr Jekyll)
-really sorts it all out for you, got the tail slightly out? no worries
-great brakes, stop on a dime

-PDK (someone says it's the auto-manual that you can respect, but not love. I agree)
-price tag (in Japanese yen 9,500,000, ouch! same spec US? $70,000. That's $25k more expensive)

COMPARED to my S2000, it is/does
-better looking
-more prestige
-double the price
-faster, quicker (Cayman 0-100km, 5.8sec, Cayman S ->5.2, S2000 ->6.0)
-less raw (in the world of sports cars, raw is good*)
-beefier torque (S2000 famous for lacking low-end torque)
-feel properly expensive

*On the topic of raw being good, true as long as you're an enthusiast. Otherwise buttons like "normal" "sport", "sport plus" may suit you better. To me the sport mode is a bit of a gimmick, a nuisance, since I will only be on sport mode 24/7. If you however found yourself in a super car, e.g. Ferrari F430, it would actually be more useful. be continued.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

late night fiasco

As much as I respect Leno as a genuine car nuts, I'm with Conan on this one. The Tonight Show has become something older folks watch as they fall asleep. What's wrong with said older folks? They don't get Conan. Leno to me is a comedy club master. Mostly cheap laughs, not very brainy but his jokes work because pensioners want exactly that. Conan on the other hand is trying to do something with the show thus taking a little more risk. Bottom line half a year is not enough for Conan to stretch his leg, metaphorically or literally.

I still think however Letterman in his earlier years was the funniest.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

onsen and Twin Ring Motegi

Over the New Year's holiday, we spent some quiet recharge time in an onsen and at Twin Ring Motegi. Here are the pics.

Within Motegi premises, there are a number of facilities:
4 race tracks
a hotel
a Honda museum
a small amusement park (some cart racing for kids)

In the Honda Collection Hall
an S500 next to Japan's first Formula 1 car

S500, grandfather of S2000

An alpaca in Tochigi

Friday, January 08, 2010

2009 was...

It's never too late to conclude how 2009 went for me and my family.

I can see clearly where I was, where I am, and where I'm going to be. 2009 was a stepping stone that confirmed I am on the right track.

It was a year we saw excitement, mistakes, and eventually disappointment - there wasn't much change after all, Obama.

Personally and business-wise though, we did decent, more than decent. We achieved what we set out to do. We provided an excellent environment for Sara. We weren't too lenient nor were we too harsh. We were attentive and caring.

2010, a mere number, I wish for health. That is all.