April 25th, 2006

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Mood for today: rash and irritated

Well, the Benadryl and Claritin both stopped working this morning, so I got to head over to the clinic on my lunch hour, where the docs agreed that it was a great case of hives, told me to knock off the Amoxicillin, and prescribed Prednisone to get the allergic reaction under control. Lunch consisted of a couple of chili dogs from SA and some Fig Newton clones from Moscow Mills, Missouri; the prednisone is going to make my blood sugar all wacky for the next week or so, but that's no reason to overindulge...

...especially since the Sportage picked today to have a minor mechanical fit. Apparently the #1 cylinder wire had worn through and was shorting out against the engine block; unfortunately, in order to discover this, they had to remove the enitre top of the engine. All hail the perverse Korean engineering of my truck! While replacing plugs & wires, they also tended to the aging fan & charging belts, changed the oil (about time, it's been over a year) and dealt with other minor folderol, all of which will set me back a little over half a grand. Ouch. Well, at least the mileage will improve after this.

Speaking of gasoline...what the hell is wrong with these people? I can understand Levin whining about windfall profits and price gouging; as Gerard Vanderleun's friend astutely observed, price gouging occurs whenever a Suspect Industry makes any kind of profit, and to Democrats all private businesses not owned by trial lawyers or Friends of Bill are suspect. Specter likewise; the man is a goddamn RINO who should have been crushed in the primaries two years ago by Pat Toomey but for the inexplicable intervention of W. No, there's no gouging going on here. The current surge in gasoline prices could have been predicted by any half-bright journalist who bothered to read the most recent "energy" bill and connect the dots, as the Wall Street Journal points out in their lead editorial. Only in Washington, San Francisco and other such places unmoored from reality could people seriously think that you could mandate the use of ethanol or MTBE in gasoline (at a time when American refiners can't possibly supply enough ethanol for the task, much less ship it efficiently across the country) and keep the 54-cent import duty on ethanol in effect without prices going up across most of the country. Only an idiot would think that refusing to hold MTBE producers harmless would assure a continued supply of that chemical; not being morons, the oil companies discontinued the use of MTBE as of May 1 this year and are glumly contemplating the barrage of lawsuits soon to be filed by every Tom, Dick and Irving who think their cancer might somehow be related to their accidental inhaling of some MTBE-tainted fuel vapor.

Yes, once again the government has managed to fuck up the economy at the behest of a bunch of half-bright lobbyists and overeducated staffers who all think they can ignore the laws of supply and demand without having to pay the consequences. Cretinous wadwastes.