"I brake for fish," says a sticker on the back of Tony Ortokales´s car. It´s the sort of thing an avid angler might have on his bumper, but the license plate reading "H20 CAR" suggests something else. The propellers below the bumper tell the rest of the story. Mr. Ortokales, a 54-year-old machinist from Laconia, N.H., is the proud owner of one of the 500-odd Amphicars remaining in the world. About 4,000 were built. The only mass-produced amphibious passenger car, the German import sold between 1962 and 1967. That´s around the time many current owners, mainly middle-aged men, spotted the cars when
When I lived in Manhattan in the early sixties, this idea was heavily promoted as a way to avoid the horrendous commute on the LIE. They even got so far as to designate landing spots on either side of the East River. I thought it was a great idea. For reasons I never learned, though, the idea sank like a rock, never to rise again.
These are really cool little cars. For those worried about the bilge pump, put a backup in and test before you go in the water!
Some interesting facts, these steer by the wheels. So you just use the steering wheel in or out of the water. I am surprised some people are surprised at these...they were in a few 1960s spy movies, commercials, etc. I understand most of the production was for the USA.
Prices have shot WAY up on these. Not too long ago, you could get a decent one for $5k. Now that won´t get you a parts car.
I have a fairly clear recollection of having seen one of these in the water when I was a kid in NY, and that puts it a year or two before 1961. And it had already been on TV so it wasn´t a total shock. And I´ve seen them a handfull of times since, on land and water.
We have much, much better technology today, but federal regulations load about 1,000 pounds of safety steel onto most cars, so living up to freeway safety standards *and* floating is probably harder than ever. But we could easily triple the horsepower on one of these things, which would seriously help in the water.
Gee, only one mention of Ted Kennedy so far, and plenty of genuine interest in the water bug for itself.
Reminded of the old joke... The two happiest days of your life... are... The day you buy a boat... And the day you sell it...
#6, that´s an especially interesting point... instead of "flying cars" which are of course just a horrendous catastrophic crash waiting to happen somewhere, somehow... what about floating cars which don´t need a ferry to make use of our ample waterways...?
Most major American cities were/are founded on or near water in some form... rivers, bays, oceans, etc
What if we could vastly enhance transportation with better more versatile vehicles instead of doing the same old same old with land-based infrastructure of the conventional mode... ?
You may be onto something here... Where is Dean Kamen when we really need him? (He promoted the Segway as a big new deal but that has flopped totally... I don´t even see our local cops on theirs anymore and instead they are on horseback and dropping road apples free for the populace... ) (drawing flies, too... which the U.N. says we are supposed to eat... "Stir Fly")
Another obvious waterway category is lakes... the Great Lakes especially, and many others... didn´t mean to leave those out of my post...
And another joke on this general subject... Personal ad run by a guy who needs the right type of gal to hook up with... Wanted... Woman who seeks a man, owns her own boat, and likes boating and fishing... Include a photo of boat...
The Rev. Al Sharpton has retail bigwigs shaking in their fine leather boots after giving them a drop-dead date of Monday to appoint a special task force on racial profiling. Or else. The ultimatum came after an intense, three-hour meeting Friday involving Sharpton, other community advocates and top retail executives, including Barneys CEO Mark Lee and Macy’s vice president Bill Hawthorne. “I feel like I’m holding my Christmas shopping money until I see what happens,” Sharpton said after the meeting at The Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in Midtown. “People should not be spending their money where they are treated as suspects rather than prospects.”
The “widespread, massive strikes and protests” targeting Walmart on Black Friday will almost certainly fall flat, says one union watchdog closely monitoring the labor group planning the pickets. OUR Walmart, a close affiliate of the massive United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW), is threatening the big-box chain with crippling strikes and angry crowds during next week’s crucial Black Friday sale unless the company raises worker wages. The planned strike, along with a series of smaller pickets preceding it, have been heavily hyped in the left-wing media. “We do expect [the protests] to be larger than last year because we have so
WASHINGTON — Two Californians proposed for the federal bench and two Texans offered as U.S. marshals are collateral damage, at least for now, in the suddenly escalated Senate confirmation wars. Expect more of the same. Senate rules provide other ways beyond the now-curtailed filibuster to obstruct nominees. Hearings can be boycotted. Routine procedural approvals can be withheld. New Capitol Hill ambushes can be plotted, perhaps with tactics not yet seen. For a truly motivated minority, losing one weapon means it’s time to pick up another. “My sense is the Republicans are going to be putting up whatever roadblocks they can,
An American girl who was abducted by her non-custodial mother as a baby almost two decades ago has been found ´safe and healthy´ living with her mom in Australia. Savanna Harris Todd has been listed as a missing person for the last 19 years after disappearing from South Carolina in 1994 when she was 11-months-old. Her mother, Dorothy Lee Barnett, has remained the prime suspect after losing custody of her daughter to ex-husband Benjamin Harris Todd, after a court determined Barnett suffered from bi-polar disorder. Barnett, who split with her husband before the birth of her daughter, had picked up Savanna from her
The Kennedy assassination is one of America´s where-were-you-when moments. But with its 50th anniversary on Friday, there are fewer and fewer Americans who can say where they were. In fact, Census data suggests that only about a third of America´s current population was alive on that day in 1963 — and less than 30 percent might actually remember. To figure this out, we pulled the Census Bureau´s projected population tables that extrapolate likely population from the 2010 Census out to 2060. For the year 2013, it offers an estimated count of every American of every age: there are just over
The Federal Election Commission declined on Thursday to grant a tea party group the same exemption from disclosure that it has long granted to left-wing political parties. The panel voted 3-2 against a proposal that would have allowed the Tea Party Leadership Fund to shield the names and information of their donors from public scrutiny. The measure needed four votes to pass the six-member panel. Federal courts have recognized that minor party candidates and other political organizations can be entitled to exemptions from disclosure on behalf of their donors, if they might face government retribution or private harassment.
Some of Obamacare’s most damaging political narratives will be getting a fresh look right before next year’s midterms, thanks to delays in the law’s implementation.Canceled insurance plans are the most obvious example. President Obama said last week that insurers can un-cancel certain policies for another year, a move largely designed to appease nervous Democrats. But a one-year delay simply means that cancellation notices will resume next October—just weeks before many of those same Democrats will face voters for the first time since voting to pass the Affordable Care Act. And that’s not the only political threat lurking just ahead of the
For the White House, November has been the cruelest month, with increasing worry among Democrats that a year from now could mean another midterm electoral disaster, similar to the results in 2010 when Republicans picked up over 60 House seats to gain control and netted six Senate seats as well. Each day produces a new poll with terrible numbers for the president and his policies. The Obama approval level has dipped below 40% in several surveys in recent days, and yesterday hit an all-time low of 37% in a CBS poll — a survey that in the past has often
Here’s the inevitable follow-up on the election of a Socialist to the Seattle City Council — although perhaps sooner than anyone would have thought. Boeing has tried working for years with its unions in the state of Washington, but still cannot reach agreements on labor contracts for its manufacturing facilities. The aerospace giant has looked for other regions in the US to build its planes, which has angered the unions and the Obama administration. It’s also provided an opportunity for Seattle’s newest councilmember to launch her anti-capitalist agenda, and she’s wasted no time in doing so … even before officially
Nearly every poll about the 2016 presidential race shows Hillary Clinton scooping up about two of out every three Democratic primary voters and leading every possible Republican contender. As a mainstream left-of-center Democrat, she would extend Obama´s policy legacy, and in turn, help facilitate a generational ideological shift. At the same time, the bitter 2008 primary allows her to avoid being perceived as an Obama clone, so she can distance herself from any unpopular aspect of Obama´s tenure. As a woman president, she would be a historic first. She has as complete a resume as anyone could possibly have before becoming president,
Liz Cheney just wanted to enjoy her milkshake. It was a Friday afternoon in early November, and the shadows were growing longer over the flat expanse of eastern Wyoming as a hard week dragged on. There had been hundreds of miles to cover and just as many hands to shake before Cheney, who was traversing the state in a road-worn SUV, sank into a booth across from me at a McDonald’s just off Interstate 25, in the town of Douglas (population: 6,280). Now, she was relishing a chocolate milkshake as she gladly held forth on her family’s new home, her
In the weeks following the 2012 elections, the post-mortems revealed how tech-savvy Obama’s re-election operation had been. The campaign built a revolutionary data-sharing platform and had more than 300 technologists and analysts on staff. In October of 2012, polls were showing a very close race, and the president’s approval rating hovered near 50 percent. So on election night, when battleground states began falling like dominoes into Obama’s column, and when Romney came up 126 electoral votes short, many people right of center were stunned. Virginia’s gubernatorial elections just weeks ago offered the first test of whether the GOP had learned its
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said on a conference call organized by Karl Rove’s Crossroads organization for large donors and their advisers on Oct. 30 that the Tea Party movement, in his view, is a “nothing but a bunch of bullies” that he plans to “punch … in the nose.” On the call, according to a donor who was on it, McConnell personally named Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) as Tea Party conservatives he views as problematic for him. “The bulk of it was an attack on the Tea Party in general, Cruz in particular,” the source, a
Fraud can be so brazen it takes people’s breath away. But for a prosecutor tasked with proving a swindle — or what federal law describes as a “scheme to defraud” — the crucial thing is not so much the fraud. It is the scheme. To be sure, it is the fraud — the individual false statements, sneaky omissions, and deceptive practices — that grabs our attention. As I’ve recounted in this space, President Obama repeatedly and emphatically vowed, “If you like your health-insurance plan, you can keep your health-insurance plan, period.” The incontrovertible record — disclosures by the Obama administration in
Fear swept through Borough Park, Brooklyn, as soon as the news got out: A young man was randomly assaulted by strangers early Friday morning, and the attack was possibly part of the so-called Knockout Game. Four men were arrested, but on Friday night only one was charged and the others were released. The attack added to a growing log of reports of such crimes in the Northeast and beyond. Young assailants were randomly picking unlucky targets and trying to knock them out with just one punch. Yet police officials in several cities where such attacks have been reported said that the “game” amounted
Joining the hosts of MSNBC’s The Cycle on Friday, legendary NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw previewed a special on the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination that will air on MSNBC that night. Recounting his experiences from that day, he said that the reaction to JFK’s assassination, “mostly in conservative states,” was encapsulated by his interaction with one man who expressed satisfaction over the president’s killing. “This was unusual but it was not unheard of,” Brokaw told the MSNBC hosts, prefacing a conservative’s reaction to JFK’s killing. “As I came running out of the announce booth, the chief engineer,
To the average American, ObamaCare is part web site disaster, part shattered campaign promise writ very, very large. Millions of Americans have already been forced out of their existing health care policies, a number that may skyrocket in the new year. Russell Simmons sees it differently. The hip-hop mogul says ObamaCare is already so successful it´s saved thousands, if not millions of lives. Yes, we initially wanted single payer, and we had to compromise back in 2009 for the Affordable Care Act. But, it is a damn good piece of legislation that has already saved hundreds of thousands, if not millions of lives. So,
If voters had been aware last year that they might lose their health-care plans when Obamacare went into effect, Republican President Mitt Romney would be sitting in the White House today, according to a poll released Friday. A Wilson Perkins Allen Opinion Research survey conducted from Nov. 18-20 asked voters who supported President Barack Obama in 2012: “As you may know, millions of Americans have lost their insurance plans despite President Obama’s promise that, quote, ‘if you like your plan, you can keep it.’ If you knew in 2012 that this promise was not true, would you still have voted
Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans”- President John F. Kennedy. There is no family in American politics who is quite on par with the Kennedy’s. Fifty years after the assassination of JFK, the family’s presence in American politics has dwindled–they’ve experienced many ups and downs– but they’ve carried on. Each generation seems to pass on the proverbial torch, and America’s interest in the Kennedy clan, whether they’re running for office or battling public relations snafus, has continued with that passing.
President Obama said Friday he does not worry much about his safety because of the “outstanding” Secret Service detail that shadows him everywhere he goes. Obama said the assassination of former President John F. Kennedy 50 years ago transformed the presidential security detail to a point where he hardly thinks about safety. "It´s not something I think about, mainly because we have a Secret Service that does an outstanding job every single day," Obama told ABC News in an interview set to air next week. For example, the open-air car Kennedy was riding in while shot in Dallas in 1963
Ahmad Rashad, a Pro Bowl wide receiver, has made yet another great catch. The Minnesota Vikings legend has rebounded from his broken marriage to Sale Johnson — the ex-wife of Jets owner Woody Johnson — and is said to be dating Valerie Jarrett, President Obama’s most trusted senior adviser. Rashad, a sportscaster and a close friend of Michael Jordan’s, is keeping the romance on the down low. “They haven’t gone out in public,” one source told me. “They are sneaking around.” (Rashad’s manager did not respond to questions about the relationship, and the White House declined to comment on Jarrett’s personal life.) Rashad, who
Mike Convente, a left-wing Daily Kos diarist and a representative on the University of Pennsylvania health care committee, took to the pages of Kos to complain about the "law of unintended consequences" of ObamaCare. Convente is also upset that Obama´s "marketing slogans … turned out to be not so correct." It looks as though the students at UPenn will be paying a lot more for their health insurance policies, thanks in large part to the fact that ObamaCare is forcing them to pay for coverage they do not need. Not only that, Convente is probably not buying the propaganda from
A photographer sued by a lesbian couple after she refused to take pictures at their commitment ceremony is taking her fight for religious freedom to the Supreme Court. Elaine Huguenin, who runs a photography business in Albuquerque, New Mexico, refused to take the snaps for the happy day of Vanessa Willock and Misti Collinsworth in 2006. The women then filed a discrimination lawsuit again Ms Huguenin. New Mexico law prohibits businesses from discriminating against people based on their sexuality.
This week´s episode of the CBS drama NCIS: Los Angeles featured an "ultra right wing" terror group complete with a Gadsden Flag, a favorite of the modern Tea Party movement. Tuesday´s episode, entitled Recovery, had the team investigating the apparent drowning of a Navy Lt. Commander at high priced California rehab center. The investigation revealed that the naval IT specialist had actually been drugged with scopolamine and Vicodin, pumped for intelligence on U.S. Predator drones and dumped in the pool. This led Special Agents Callen, Hanna, Deeks and Blye to a fictitious “ultra right-wing” extremist group that planned to hijack