Monthly Archives: February 2010

We Really Need To

READ IDIOTS LIKE — such as (evennn) — Lindsay Graham (Duh – SC) out of the party. Here’s the bird-brain himself quoted by Thomas Friedman in the NYT:

It is early evening on Capitol Hill, and I am sitting with Senator Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican, who, along with John Kerry and Joe Lieberman, is trying to craft a new energy bill — one that could actually win 60 votes. What is interesting about Graham is that he has been willing — courageously in my view — to depart from the prevailing G.O.P. consensus that the only energy policy we need is “drill, baby, drill.”


What brought you around, I ask? Graham’s short answer: politics, jobs and legacy. We start with politics. The Republican Party today has a major outreach problem with two important constituencies, “Hispanics and young people,” Graham explains:

“I have been to enough college campuses to know if you are 30 or younger this climate issue is not a debate. It’s a value. These young people grew up with recycling and a sensitivity to the environment — and the world will be better off for it. They are not brainwashed. … From a Republican point of view, we should buy into it and embrace it and not belittle them. You can have a genuine debate about the science of climate change, but when you say that those who believe it are buying a hoax and are wacky people you are putting at risk your party’s future with younger people. You can have a legitimate dispute about how to solve immigration, but when you start focusing on the last names of people the demographics will pass you by.”


And for those Republicans who think this is only a loser, Senator Graham says think again: “What is our view of carbon as a party? Are we the party of carbon pollution forever in unlimited amounts? Pricing carbon is the key to energy independence, and the byproduct is that young people look at you differently.” Look at how he is received in colleges today. “Instead of being just one more short, white Republican over 50,” says Graham, “I am now semicool. There is an awareness by young people that I am doing something different.”

Five more G.O.P. senators like him and we could have a real energy bill.

“We can’t be a nation that always tries and fails,” Graham concludes. “We have to eventually get some hard problem right.”

(Hat tip: Tom Nelson.)

It’s almost like he hasn’t been paying attention over the past four months. Let alone the entire duration of the AGW panic.

I seem to recall Graham being good on some topics — though specificity would come at more effort than I care to … to effort — but the overwhelming sense is that his Different Drummer is Animal from the Muppet Band.

And the Pep Band Plays “Tequila”

WHILE THE BLONDES in short skirts and color coordinated underpants dance and shake their pom-poms. GO OHIO! YAY!

Have I Not Said This?

THE POSITION of liberty-lovers and other folk in the Right MUST be one of demanding repeal. Repeal of the income tax. Repeal of the 17th Amendment. Repeal of the Harrison Act, et sequelae. Repeal of the Social Security Act. Repeal of Davis-Bacon. Repeal of the right of tax-supported workers to unionize. Repeal of the Great Society and all its follow-on programs. Repeal most especially (should it pass in any form) of Obamacare. Let the progressive bastards bitch about our wanting to “Roll back a century of progress.” That’s alright, Fool. Your progress was in the wrong direction. Merely a sharp correction now to forestall disaster down the road.

As Andy McCarthy points out at NRO.

I’m glad Republicans have held firm, but let’s not be under any illusions about what that means. In the Democrat leadership, we are not dealing with conventional politicians for whom the goal of being reelected is paramount and will rein in their radicalism. They want socialized medicine and all it entails about government control even more than they want to win elections. After all, if the party of government transforms the relationship between the citizen and the state, its power over our lives will be vast even in those cycles when it is not in the majority. This is about power, and there is more to power than winning elections, especially if you’ve calculated that your opposition does not have the gumption to dismantle your ballooning welfare state.

(Hat tip Insty and The Barrister at Maggie’s.)

The Shell Game

RAMPS UP

Listening to Sound Bites

FROM THE HEALTH care summit on the radio, I get the impression that the Democrats are suprised that the Republicans are as fesity as they are. I think they thought they could steamroller them. Obama in particular seems unable to deal with resistance.

That said, I still maintain that the GOP congresscritters are taking the wrong tack. Strategically, once you start arguing minutiae, you’ve conceded the enemy’s case — that there is a legitimate cause to be legislated on, here. And there is not.

I think the case could be made to Mr. and Mrs. America (and all the ships at sea) like thusly:

When you and your family play a game of Monopoly around the kitchen table on family game night, the rules are printed inside the lid of the box the game comes in. And you play by those rules. You may agree among yourselves to amend those rules. I never knew any family that played games together who didn’t. But you do that beforehand. You don’t change the rules willy nilly in the middle of the game. That’s not fair play. It’s un-American.

The Constitution is the rules in the boxtop for the game of America.

And the Constitution does not permit Congress to legislate on matters such as health care, and it does not permit Congress to require the People to purchase any product.

And what Congress is not permitted to do, it is forbidden to do.

What Congress is bent on doing is against the law. It is in violation of the rules of the game. It is cheating. If Congress wants to legistlate on health care, it must first amend the Constitution.

Quote of the Day

…[I]nstead of being ideologically greedy and ignoring good science and economics, we can start being wise and truly concerned about our children, and their children, and the society in which they will live.

Harrison Schmitt

Yeah.

Good luck with that.

Fire That Idiot!

RADIO COMMERCIAL pushing the statist take on the — scorn quotes — “Health Care Summit” or “Jobs Summit” or whatever photo op, and circus is upcoming Thursday.

Ends: “Great public schools are a basic right for every child.”

Signed: The 3 million members of the National Education Association.

FAIL!

By that statement — almost irrelevant to the matter at hand — the sponsors of the message sign themselves as unqualified — DISqualified — to hold the title “teacher” in any decent school, public or private.

To ensure you learn the lesson, write ten thousand times:

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

A “right” cannot require that someone else provide it for you.

By the Way

MEANT TO MENTION this earlier. I meant to say, I love the pun in the headline target="_blank">here.

Reading of the Rules

DO NOT come at me with the obvious objection as though I haven’t thought about it. That’s just stupid. Of course I’ve thought about it, and dismissed it as either inconsistent with or irrelevant to a counter-argument.

That’s not — I say again, NOT — to say that Ragin’ Dave is stupid here, when he raises a seemingly valid counter to the call to cease drug prohibition, to whit: what about the costs of medical care for addicts? Is there not an unfair burden to be born by taxpayers should sanctions be lifted?

And, for that matter, since there’s no indication of it, and for all Dave is a regular reader of BTB — and thanks for that — there’s no reason to believe he writes in response to my earlier post.

Dave is considering from his perspective an aspect of reality. I merely differ in that I believe his perspective is flawed in two wises. First, as relates to reality-as-it-is-and-not-as-we-would-it, the costs of medical care for drug addicts already fall on taxpayers, so some extent. I see that, to the extent that the public covers these costs, to be a fault of the prohibition. I do not see, therefor, that the lifting of prohibition will change much.

Second, and I believe more important: we’re talking matters of principle, here. Of course it’s wrong that the costs of drug addicition should be born by the taxpayer. In fact, it’s wrong that taxpayers should subsidize medical care for anybody, so the righting of that wrong will take care of the other.

And, I guess, the overarching principle here is that arguing against the ending of one evil practice because another evil practice exists independent of the first is not a winning tactic.

Cross-posted at Eternity Road.

OK. So Now

ACCORDING TO LEFTISTS in Congress and the bureaucracy, squirming under the microscope, as the polarized light of truth reveals their fraudulent prior statements, are trying to say that previously-cited evidence of GLOBAL climate change — GLOBAL, remember — no longer matters. What matters now is what American organizations (not yet as thoroughly discredited as the international ones) say. (Who cares if they quaff from the same data set?) So, now, instead of the danger being GLOBAL climate change, it’s LOCAL climate change.

The whole rationale
out of their own mouths:
vanish.

A puff of blue smoke.
Sunlight hits the mirrors.

Game over.

This’ll Be All Over

BUT AS A BIT OF fan — er — reader service, here are the lyrics.

A caller to Beck’s show asked folks to reference this in reflection of Obama.

“You Haven’t Done Nothing”

We are amazed but not amused
By all the things you say that you’ll do
Though much concerned but not involved
With decisions that are made by you

But we are sick and tired of hearing your song
Telling how you are gonna change right from wrong
‘Cause if you really want to hear our views
“You haven’t done nothing”!

–Stevie Wonder

Why I’m A Libertarian

AND NOT A conservative — put as simply as I can.

Conservatives understand that “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people,” but seem to miss the point when it comes to “Drugs ruin lives.”

Conservatives, confronted with the libertarian demand that drug prohibition cease, miss the point. It’s not about an abdication of individual, personal responsibility. It’s about limits on the scope and power of the state, and the kinds of sanctions the state should be permitted to enact and enforce. It’s about a focus on the actual harm done others and the proximate nature of the acts — the mala in se — to be punished. It’s about limiting the “collateral damage” of unrestrained state action.

Conservatives swerve into trouble when they assert, “There’s no right to privacy in the Constitution,” but have no trouble using the Ninth and Tenth Amendments as a rhetorical blunt instrument against the Federal government. No cognitive dissonnance there. Oh, no.

I should have liked it a lot better had the founders been a bit more explicit. They thought it should be self-evident, but reckoned without idiots and those of ill intent. There should be in letters of fire over the gates of the place, “These things are forbidden the state; all which is not expressly mandated here is forever beyond its purview.” And across the way, “These things are permitted the people; to others do no harm, otherwise, do as you will.”

Watch the Pea

BECAUSE, TRUST ME it’s not being taken off of the table. It’ll just be tucked under another shell — sleight of hand maneuver — and get shuffled around until the con man thinks you’ve lost track of it.

Nothing Really Different

THAN HE PREACHES on his radio show. Nonetheless, Glenn Beck scores a testimonial home run at CPAC. (VIdeo at link.)

Well worth the hour to watch the whole thing.

Somebody Recently Wondered

ALOUD IN MY HEARING (always a bad thing, that — it gives me ideas), where would the modern Thomas Paine come from?

The picture of Thomas Paine we have carried down the years — like that of most of the founding fathers — is somewhat sanitized. Paine was not a nice person. He was a pamphleteer and a rabble-rouser, with some sometimes disphoneous (sic) opinions.

Something like … Andrew Breitbart? </churchlady>

Sometimes When Politicians

SAY THEY’RE LAYING aside the burdens of office “to be with family,” it’s for real.

Baby Sister, the Senator, left a legislative session to rush home to the hospital bedside of our Aunt Chris — our mother’s older sister — who apparently has had a stroke or a similar trauma. According to broadcast emails (“Sent from My Blackberry” … how much bad news is being delivered this way these days?), it’s not likely Aunt Chris will survive very long.

I know grief is for the living, but I can’t help it. This world will be so much the poorer without Chris Story in it. As Sis put it, Aunt Chris was/is/has been a fiercely independent woman, ahead of her time. Back when Steinem and Friedan and the rest of the feminist icons were bitching about how bad their po’ Ivy League asses had it, Aunt Chris was taking up a second (or third?) career as an architect and general contractor. This was before you ever saw the “first woman carpenter” or the “first female lineman” in news stories. She was bossing house-building crews and building some of the best homes in the county. Did it on sheer brass and competence. And she only had to ask a guy once to come on a second job with her.

It was her second husband — Uncle Cliff — to whom I have referred many times in these pixels. He was the underage kid who signed up for the Marines after Pearl Harbor and ended up landing with the First Marine Division at Guadalcanal. Who went to school on the GI Bill and wound up a boss engineer in the aerospace industry. Who has been an inspiration to me and who was closer than a surrogate father to Baby Sis. It says a lot about Chris that she could “catch” such a man.

We used to tease her about her foibles, now fondly remembered as gentle eccentricities that she joined in the teasing of herself on occasion. There’s OCD and there’s borderline, and there’s over the border. Aunt Chris was over the border and over the top. But her house was always beautiful, immaculate, and comfortable. And, second hand from Mom, I learned a lot from her about how to keep house, even if you couldn’t tell from looking at my current environs. Every tip I can remember was prefaced with “Chris says…” or “Chris has a trick with a hole in it.”

She was thrifty before it was cool — back in the go-go ’60s. She would put out paper napkins at meals, and write people’s names on them, to be reused from lunch to dinner and from one day to the next. We kids — brats all — learned early on to shred our napkins at a meal, so we could get a fresh one next time we sat down. I bet she figured it out. She was pretty canny that way, and had a way of cocking a knowing grin at you sideways when she caught you.

A lot of people in my life have died over the years. But few are as close to the core of who I am as Aunt Chris. For the next… however long … I’ll be mourning her and remembering that part of her life that touched mine.

A final story about her. Her real name wasn’t Chris. Oh, I think she legally adopted it somewhen along the line. But her given name was Gertrude. Her brothers hung the name Chris on her, after Crisco, whose tag line in the ’30s was apparently “Fat in the Can.” And, rather than let it stand as an insult, letting them know their needling got to her, she proudly took on the name and made it hers, threw it back in their faces. There’s a lesson in there for a lot of overly sensitive members in the congregation at Our Lady of the Perpetually Offended.

I’m sure she will shortly be casting a critical eye on the cleanliness of the Pearly Gates and taking St. Peter to task for the blots on his escutcheon.

Update: Chris passed at 9:30 local time on Thursday, at just about the time I posted this.

Hey! Alger!

YOU FORGOT MY birthday … again.

Did I? Oh, right. It was Sunday. Sorry. Happy birthday, Dolly.

Thanks fer nuthin’, asshole!

You Try and Try

TO EXPLICATE a topic — say, why claims of global warming/cooling/anything are risible, because the data they’re based on…
And you get bogged down in details.

Then somebody comes along and puts your best efforts to shame for clarity, brevity, concision, and accuracy. And good on ’em.

And you still don’t know what it is. Do you, Professor Jones?

I know It’s a Pebble

TO A LANDSLIDE for li’l ol’ me to recommend a WSJ article by Insty, but there it is. An excellent summation of the Tea Party convention and of the movement’s goals going forward. And a glimmer of hope in these dark times that we may indeed do as I have long urged and claw back power from Washington as a first step in restoring our beaux ideal — liberty for all.

Global Default

OR THE BURSTING of a government bubble?

Eh? Did you say, “Government bubble?”

Sure. The growth, by various over-subscribed social initiatives, of the government “market” beyond all reason or rationale — irrational exuberance, if you will — now (or soon to be) subject to a sharp correction administered by natural market forces. A government bubble.

Oh… keh.

Two Things

TO SAY ABOUT the so-called Tragedy of the — scorn quotes — “Commons.” Well, OK, since that was one, let’s make it three. Our Curmudgeon’s alter ego, that guy Fran, has two more which we’ll count as one.

What no one can privatize, no one has a reason to conserve.
What no one can privatize, no one has a reason to protect.

Which I sum up as: What everyone owns, no one owns. (True for all values of own.)

Which leads me to conclude that the Federal Government (at least) should be enjoined from owning real property outside of the District of Columbia, that all needs for land be met with leases, with the owners to be made whole from pollution issues.

Can you tell I have problems with the doctrine of sovereign immunity?

I’ve Long Held

THAT “NEED” IS A piss-poor determinant of deserts. I really don’t care what you need. Come back and talk to me when you’ve figured out what you’ve earned.

But You Know

AS INSTY OBSERVES in alluding to the story of the heat wave in Rio (said allusion here), if only they could exchange BTUs with DC.

A heat wave in Brazil in Summer. Who’d ha’ thunk it?

But ya know…

If the heat wave in Rio turns out to be a greater anomaly toward the warm end of the scale than the blizzard in DC is toward the cool end, the average will tend to “prove” global warming. If the opposite is true, it will tend to “prove” global warming.

Speaking of nonsense, Our Curmudgeon does a brilliant and high-level takedown of the bad “settled” science of global warming (that science being the nonsense alluded to above). Worth the read.

Here’s One I Bet They

DIDN’T CONSIDER… Do we really want Microsoft to be seen by the American people as being so unpatriotic as to be target="_blank">distancing itself from the U.S. Army?

Missed that one, did they?

Uhh… yup.

Talk to the Hand

LEMME GET THIS STRAIGHT the Myrmidon Media (a.k.a., legacy partisan press) has its BVDs in a bunch because la Palin wrote notes on the palm of her hand?

Bitches, please!

He Says “Paralysis”

LIKE IT WAS somehow less desirable than the alternative.

Status Quo: Not Acceptable

NO SHIT, SHERLOCK! Mr. President. As Ronaldus Magnus famously said, status quo is Latin for “this mess we’re in.” And guess how we got here. Right: leftist nostrums such as the Democrat-controlled Congress is seeking to ram more of down the throats of the American people.

I’m told that people don’t read the side matter in this blog, so I want to emphasize the masthead aphorism above:

Compromise, hell! That’s what has happened to us all down the line – and that’s the very cause of our woes. If freedom is right and tyranny is wrong, why should those who believe in freedom treat it as if it were a roll of bologna to be bartered a slice at a time?

–Jesse Helms

There is no need for you to meet us halfway. On the contrary, you need to unconditionally surrender. No part of your party’s program is constitutional. No part of your party’s program is wanted by the American people. What the people want is for the nostrums that got us this mess we’re in rolled back.

There’s been a lot of talk about a certain “r” word that describes a great deal of your party’s program as well as your extreme left-wing partisans. But here’s another one:

REPEAL.

Learn it. Love it. Live it.

Quote of the Day

…[I]t became blindingly clear no reasonable person could believe gun control made society safer.

Joe Huffman

OK. If The Birther Thing

IS SUCH A DISTRACTION why is Obama fighting it so hard? To sow dissention in the ranks on the Right?

Somehow, Alger, that doesn’t follow. That Obama is fighting being forced to produce a real birth certificate, (and not that Sears learner’s-permit POS they keep trying to say is the real thing) isn’t the reason people say the issue distracts from other, more important issues.

So sayeth da Doll.

So sayeth da Doll.

You’re just like all the ecumenists among so-called moderates (read: closet leftists) on the Right (but not in the Right, if you get the distinction). You’re accepting the contention that peace is the absence of resistance to leftist jihad.

::wobbita wobbita wobbita wobbita::

And you’re failing to learn from history.

OK, Alger! Enough with the non-sequiturs!

When do leftists fight the hardest to prevent the revelation of any bit of information?

Wull… when it’s the truth!

Right in one. Do the math.

Of Course, There’s

ALWAYS THE Peace Corpse.

Resolved

UNIONS ARE coercive and fundamentally un-American. Most especially so are href="http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/politics/Public-sector-unions-bleed-taxpayers-to-help-Dems-83652517.html" target="_blank">public sector (read: government) unions.

Don’t agree? Try this thought experiment: remove the right to strike. Or, rather, remove the requirement that striking workers not lose their positions of employment with the enterprise being struck.

Change things?

This one feature makes union representation of workers extortionate, therefor coercive, therefor un-American. Yet, without it, a union is a paper tiger. Powerless. Severely straitened in its ability to influence negotiations.

Nor do I buy the argument that unions served a purpose in the early days, but went astray somewhere. That smacks to me of Marge Schott’s blathering that Hitler was OK in the beginning. Unions were born in coercive violence, and violate the fundamental precepts of Americanism.

That’s not to leave blameless the corporate employers whose actions are cited as casus belli for the formation of unions. Far from it. They, too, operated in coercive fashion and were no less un-American for all of that. But the corporations — most of them — have reformed, or lie in pieces on the great recycling heap of history.

Can the unions say the same?

Ur Doin It Wrong Indeed

SOMETIMES IT JUST doesn’t pay to engage in hyperbole, ’cause they only go and move the perihelion on you.

Like… You know government is so inept they could fuck up a wet dream? I give you Exhibit A.

What a waste of potential. With a little imagination and some initiative, those boys could do some serious damage.

Damn!

Just…

Damn!

The Longer O’Bambi Is

IN OFFICE the stronger comes the memory of a little old lady in a black dress with a white lace collar, shouting myopically at a hamburger bun on a plate, “WHERE’S THE BEEF!?”

Where have you gone, Clara Peller?

Bears Repeating

I’VE SAID FOR YEARS that, if you want to get the money out of politics, take the power out of Washington. Yeah, there are issues with that, not least of which being: what do you do with the power? It still exists, it’s just not being used by anybody. But, as we say in business, that would be a GOOD problem to have, as opposed to where we are.

Tip of the Spats topper: Warren Meyer.

A Notion That Needs

AND DESERVES TO BE spread far and wide. From Lyle @ UltiMAK, as seen on Joe Huffman’s blog.

The very fact that there are anti gun rights weasels in Congress is in itself a crime. When will the time come that it isn’t considered “balance” to include the bigoted comments of the anti gun rights activists in public discourse, and it is seen for what it is — a lying, bigoted, anti American movement? The Enemy Within. Would we tolerate the KKK being invited to speak in public forums? Would we tolerate an anti women’s suffrage coalition of Mayors?

One thing we should always keep in mind is what victory would look like. One feature of victory would be that any politician who, even under his breath, even caught in a private conversation, suggests an infringement on a constitutional right risks swift impeachment. What could be worse, after all, than someone charged with protecting our rights actually fighting against them? Would you tolerate your nanny abusing your kids? Would you tolerate your security guard stealing from you or attacking you? Would you tolerate your grounds-keeper tearing up your lawn and garden, demanding that you have no right to a nice lawn? Would you tolerate your accountant embezzling from you? Why in the hell should we as a society tolerate any politician who hates the very fact that we have rights? If the term, “enemy of the state” has or ever had any meaning, surely an anti-rights politician is a prime example.

“Swift impeachment.” Such a pretty way to put it.

And he didn’t even use the “T” word.

Noticed that, did you, Dolly?

Hey, da Doll didn’t just fall off the turnip truck yesterday!

This Kind of Thing

IS UNCALLED FOR. There’s no need to engage in ad hominem attacks on Keith Olberman when his every blathering manifests his utter stupidity…

Um… Alger? Isn’t that an ad hominem?

Oh, hell. You’re probably right. It’s just that the man is such a black hole of intelligence — the threshold of wit is just too high for any of it to escape the singularity — that there’s no way you can argue any other way. The suck of the stupid just overcomes the smart so handily.

I Think the Real Reason

THE WON’S numbers are tanking is that he’s too busy lecturing the American people on how they’re wrong about everything.