Wednesday, July 28, 2004
So Bill, what did you do with the check? Send it back? Donate it to charity?
Tuesday, July 27, 2004
"Democrats want to build an America of shared responsibilities and shared opportunities"
- Bill Clinton (July 26,2004)
Problem. What it translates to is this:
The responsible, the hard-working reap fewer rewards for their sacrifices, and the irresponsible reap rewards they did not sow.
How does that promote responsibility? How does this promote wealth-generation? Where will the new opportunities come from?
The message is essentially the same as it has been. Tax the rich. Give it to the poor. Tax and spend.
Am I calling the poor irresponsible? Not really. People can be poor for many reasons. Irresponsibility does lead to lack of wealth, though. I'm not rich. I grew up poor. But I worked hard and I'm getting by. I was encouraged to work hard. And I was encouraged to work hard because I knew that nobody was going to give me anything.
What Reaganomics recognized was that taxes are a drag on the economy. It is true, in order to have a government, taxes are pretty much necessary. But the country is getting bad gas mileage, and we need to adjust the carbeurator. It's running too rich on taxes, draining energy from the economy.
Money represents work. Taxes are a drain on money. Money creates opportunity to use it to make more work through investing. Investing creates more opportunity for work.
Taxes are a drag on this cycle. Raising taxes cuts investment and that cuts opportunity which cuts jobs.
This cuts overall wealth, cutting tax revenue, which leads to higher tax rates (since the government can't seem to drop programs and needs an ever increasing pool of revenue to support more and more people).
Higer tax rates cuts investment again.... and you see where this goes.
So it's all fine and good to talk about shared responsibilities and shared opportunities -- but... how're ya gonna create 'em?
Monday, July 26, 2004
Is it a democracy, or isn't it?
The answer is, yes it is a democracy, but it is modeled as a representative democracy rather than a direct democracy.
It turns out that the electoral college was put in place for several reasons, and one of them was to protect the country from a tyranny of the majority.
A tyranny of the majority?
Isn't the majority what a democracy is all about? Well -- not ours, necessarily as it turns out. We don't vote on every issue. We have three branches of government to check and balance each other. And it appears that the electoral college was created in part to check the power of more densely populated geographic areas of the country over the interests of people in less densely populated geographic areas.
Our forefathers were smarter than a lot of people give them credit for.
For instance -- even today, the majority of the US population is Christian, and in the past even more so. If this were a pure democracy, the Christians could simply vote to amend the constitution to repeal the separation of church and state, and establish a Christian Theocracy by popular vote. That's tyranny of the majority.
It was also put into place to protect against an uneducated (on the issues) public from being manipulated by clever men (anyone come to mind this year? Hmmmm?)
"A popular election in this case is radically vicious. The ignorance of the people would put it in the power of some one set of men dispersed through the Union, and acting in concert, to delude them into any appointment." -- Delegate Gerry, July 25, 1787
"The extent of the country renders it impossible, that the people can have the requisite capacity to judge of the respective pretensions of the candidates." -- Delegate Mason, July 17, 1787
"The people are uninformed, and would be misled by a few designing men." -- Delegate Gerry, July 19, 1787.
Well! How do you like them apples?
If you look fuzzily at the general election results, you see that states with more rural populations went for Bush in 2000, while states with more urban populations went to Gore. Maybe this is not so far from what the founding fathers intended.
I think what's behind all the eagerness for Bush Bashing goes back to the last election.
There's so much bitterness on the part of the left over the Al Gore loss in 2000. Yes, Al Gore lost. He actually won slightly more human votes, apparently, than Bush did, but according to the rules, Gore lost. It's not the first time in history a president legally won an election without actually getting more votes than the runner-up. The way our system is set up, it is a possibility. However, to hear the Left talk, you'd think that some small, misguided, minority of ignorant voters (combined with the even smaller evil and powerful, rich, and of course evil, super-minority) somehow "stole" the election through some obscure technicality that nobody even knew about. In fact, just about as many people who voted for Gore voted for Bush.
In their anguish, they combed the circumstances around two or three vote re-counts in Florida for any suggestion that some votes cast invalidly for Gore were in fact, valid, and some suggestion that some valid votes cast for Bush were in fact invalid. Or that somehow probable Gore supporters were kept from the polls by "evil" Bush's brother, the governor of Florida. In the end, independent investigations on the nit-picking supported the fact that Bush won the vote in Florida, and nobody was kept from the polls. But it's often repeated by the Left that Bush's presidency is somehow invalid -- and if they repeat the mantra of their littany of allegations often enough it will make them true.
Bush has done some controversial things in difficult times. The Patriot Act is one of them. It makes me nervous because of the possibility for abuse. On the other hand, what's a government to do? These people don't exactly drive around with "Proud Al-Quaida Member" bumper-stickers.
Bush went to war with a country that now appears not to have been as big a threat as the world intelligence community largely thought it was before we went to war. In my opinion, though, this is so much "Monday Morning Quarterbacking", and it still doesn't convince me that it wasn't a good idea. The Left wants to blame Bush for not doing anything on extremely sketchy evidence to prevent 9/11, and at the same time, condemn him for acting quickly (although not as quickly as he wanted to) on much much stronger evidence for danger from Iraq (or more accurately, Saddam Hussein). These are inconsistent positions, tied together only by the bitter dogma that anything Bush does must be wrong.
And now we're down to the crux of the matter. I have no respect for anyone who is just "against Bush". Tell me what you're for. That will make it clear what you're against, but in a constructive manner. Then after that you can clarify to me what it is you're against. It's far too easy to critcize someone who is actually doing something. You can tell me all you want about what you wouldn't do, but that gets nothing done. What would you do? Do you have a plan, and if so, what is it? Put it out there in detail for us to criticize the way you delight in criticizing others.
So, why am I for Bush? Well, as I've mentioned numerous times, I'm not for everything Bush is for. However,
- I'm for a strong, consistent stand against terrorism that does not reward it
- I do not want the USA to defer to the UN especially in matters of security. The UN is a good place for discussion and a medium to promote cooperation, but it should not be allowed to be any sort of world government.
- I'm for smaller government -- and Bush's vision for government size is smaller (though admittedly not enough for my tastes) than Kerry's is
- I believe that business creates jobs, so promoting business promotes prosperity for everyone. The government creates no dollars in the economy, it only uses dollars from the economy. Wealth must be generated by people, and those who create it must be encouraged to continue to do so.
- I support the second amendment and believe as Jefferson did that it is a core to a free society
- I think Bush is basically a decent human being, regardless of my differences with him. I also believe that he will act consistently with his general moral base, which is on the whole, good.
That's it in a nutshell. That's how I can be for Bush. If you agree with me on these issues and still can't be for Bush, try looking at http://www.lp.org . I typically vote Libertarian, but this time around I think Kerry in the Whitehouse is too big a danger to my stand on these issues for me not to throw my vote behind the strongest candidate (the one with the best chance of beating him) that at least leans in the direction of my positions on these issues.And if you disagree with me, by all means, vote for Nader or Badnarik. ;-)
Friday, July 23, 2004
Kenya is upset because it did not support the war, sent no troops, and condemned the invasion.
But the kidnappers (ok, Godless, murdering thugs) aren't trying to upset or manipulate the Kenyan government. That's not the point. They are trying to frighten people who will work for any foriegn company in Iraq to keep those companies from being able to place people there.
And why? So there'll be more jobs for Iraqis?
Nope. It is so that Iraq cannot get off the ground rebuilding itself. There are a few reasons for this. One is pride. But it's probably not the most important one here. Basically, if they can keep Iraq from rebuilding itself, then it knows that America will be blamed for causing all of these problems (you know, they're only killing people because we made them do it... the devil made them do it). Conversely, it cannot risk having Iraq rebuild itself, because that would mean that America might not be so bad after all. This is contrary to the dogma of the fundamentalist Islamist movement. And as with all fundamentalist movements, dogma must never be questioned. People start leaving the movement and it's bad for recruitment.
And this is why the rebuilding must succeed. Not only so that Iraqis can have a better life, but so that people will start to abandon the twisted ideology of the fundamentalist Islamist movement. If it's not America keeping you down, who is it?
This was at the core of the multiple reasons why Bush/Cheney/Bair & Co.'s REAL reasons for going to war -- if you were listening closely, it always was a keystone in a longer-term plan. A plan that we've only completed steps 1 & 2 in (oust Saddam, establish an interim government). There's 3 & 4 now. Elections, then the REAL rebuilding of Iraq. After that, slowly, the self-empowerment of the Arab world to make their own lives better.
The bottom line is that these terrorists, claiming to be working for the Iraqi people and for Iraq, are actually working to make sure that Iraq does not recover -- because that is, in the end, what furthers recruitment and indoctrination to their cause.
Thursday, July 22, 2004
But the only problem I have with Fox is the insistance that they don't have a right-ward spin. I actually applaud them for having it. But they should just unapologetically say it and get on with it.
What's great about Fox is that they present facts that others purposely or subconciously leave out. Sure, they leave out facts, too, and downplay others. But I don't get my news exclusively from them. And frankly, I can tell when someone is opining.
But perhaps the whole "fair and balanced" thing is meant as tounge-in-cheek. After all, we're not even supposed to question whether CNN or the New York Times is fair and balanced. It is smugly assumed.
In these outlets, the term "conservative" is often used as a discrediting label -- you know, sort of like "convicted felon". (see media-research for more info)
What is ironic, and maybe that's the point, is that Fox provides a balance to the other outlets that was missing before.
I know there are many, many others.
But it's "just a movie, right?", as the left defends the admittedly anti-Bush slant the movie takes.
Slant? Yeah. Like the face of El Capitan is a "slant".
So, for those of you still with me, I have a couple of things to pass on to your Michael Moore worshiping friends.
- Consisting of, concerning, or based on documents.
- (n) a presentation facts objectively without editorializing or inserting fictional matter, as in a book or film.
I contend based on the content and the public statements of Michael Moore, that this is in fact propaganda (deceitful propaganda at that), and that it works on people who don't have the predisposition to be critical of what they see -- which is excactly what it was intended to do. Michael knew he wouldn't sway many Bush supporters, he's fishing for votes from people who typically wouldn't, or have no strong feelings one way or the other. And it works. People who haven't been keeping up with all sides of these debates see it as a "Cliffnotes" quick-study, and walk away feeling informed rather than manipulated, and are instilled with a "righteous" outrage.
- The systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause or of information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause.
- Material disseminated by the advocates or opponents of a doctrine or cause.
Wednesday, July 21, 2004
It just said "W" 2004, with a flag. Small little oval. Understated.
I ordered one.
I'm breaking with my long tradition of voting Libertarian every election because it's important to me that I do my best to keep Kerry out of the White House.
On the issues I disagree with "W" on, at least I know I disagree with him on them. Kerry really won't say what he stands for outright. A lot of vagueness about jobs and dignity, but no plan. But he's the hero of the Nanny Culture. The Religious Left. No, there's no formal church, but they have their own moral code they want to force on the rest of us nonetheless.
It's not just an anti-American culture, it's an anti-human culture. This is the party of the activists, most of them anyway. And activism in the last 20 or so years has lost its good name. The Greens and animal welfare groups have been hijacked by militants who consider humans a blight, a "cancer" on the planet. They consider anything any other animal on the planet does as "natural", but anything humans do is un-natural. It is as if we are not a part of the equation, but some errant term, planted by an evil force. But we are as much a part of the planet and its ecosystems as any other animal. And our effects on the environment are just as natural as those of any other species on the planet.
Now, I'm not saying that means its ok for us to trash it and make it uninhabitable. I'm conservationist, and I don't belive in cruelty to animals. But the people in control of the major organizations are nuts. They talk about balance, but man is never a part of their equation.
Greenpeace co-founder Patrick Moore, who split with the group in 1986, has been quite critical of what the group has turned into -- describing them as “Anti-human”; “antitechnology and anti-science”; “Anti-organization” and “pro-anarchy”; “anti-trade”; “anti-free-enterprise”; “anti-democratic”; and “basically anti-civilization.” In 2001, he said “I had no idea that after I left in 1986 they would evolve into a band of scientific illiterates…. Clearly, my former Greenpeace colleagues are either not reading the morning paper or simply don't care about the truth.”
From what I've read on environmental and animal rights groups, their thought processes (if you can call them that) are pretty much the same. And these are the people that want John Kerry in the White House. These are the people that don't base their decisions on facts, but on a kind of religious idealism -- the kind facts cannot alter. Their priests are the Michael Moores of the world. And like other religious zealot groups in the past, they have lost any use for restraint. Their self-righteousness gives them the "right" to forward their agenda by any means possible. They threaten people. They burn down buildings, bomb places they disagree with. And they will kill one day. And they have the ear of the Democratic party. Sure, they polish up what they've got to say -- clean it up for public consumption.
They are nasty brats who resort to calling names rather than talk about issues in terms of facts. If you're not with them, you're a Nazi, or a redneck, or a racist, or any number of other labels of dismissal. This is how they censor facts when confronted by them.
These are not the people I want in charge of the country.
This country was founded on Freedom and Liberty. These people want anarchy or some sort of Green and Animal-worshiping autocracy.
Well, not if I can help it.
So, "W", you didn't get my vote last time, but you're getting it this time.
Tuesday, July 20, 2004
A man and his 18-year-old daughter are in love. They have very deep and passionate feelings for each other. They are both legally adults. Mom is dead, or mom and dad are divorced. (incidentally, I do not have a daughter, nor am I married to my mother -- this is a purely hypothetical exercise.)
Should father and daughter be allowed to marry?
You can call them sick-o's, but that's what a lot of people call gays. (I am not one of those people, but many people -- maybe even half or more of America... does.)
How does this fall outside the definition of Marriage that is being proposed? Sure, there are possible genetic problems that could result from offspring, but remember, one of the arguments being put forward by the pro-gay-marriage crowd is that marriage is not about procreation. The man will get a vasectomy.
So now it's just down to a moral question. Should man and daughter, mother and son, mother and son, father and son, mother and daughter, brother and sister... be allowed to legally marry?
Remember, I'm in favor of legal same-sex unions. I just question the idea of calling it marriage. Ultimately, I'm talking about semantics.
So... who is to say that a father-daughter marriage is wrong or immoral? Is it only YOUR morals that matter?
Or are you just a bunch of incestophobes?
Government out of my bedroom!
What do you all think?
- the Devil's Advocate
Friday, July 16, 2004
Holding your own opinions and expressing them? Not a problem. Using that kind of foul language in a public forum? Highly questionable. Being that vitriol (once again, in a semi-official capacity and in public) to incite hate for a man that (for argument's sake, you can't argue with) around half of the country would re-elect today as President of the United States? Short sighted. Juvenille. Rude. Offensive to a LOT of people.
If someone (read "a white person") went off on Jesse Jackson like that the rage of the press and the NAACP would be nuclear. It's just not the way to carry on a debate -- calling your opponent dirty names. It reveals a lack of willingness to discuss issues. Real grown up. You're the ilk I want running the country for sure. We can just dismiss our opponent's positions on the issues because after all, he's a "c*!nt".
And about that, why is the press being so tight-lipped about what was really said? You can bet that if (and it would not be) this kind of language were leveled against Kerry at a Republican fund-raiser, the press would have a transcript on the front page.
But... it's all ok, because Dick Cheney has a potty mouth, too, right? After all, he was caught off camera and off mic in a personal argument with an antagonist telling the antagonist off in less-than-polite language. There's a HUGE difference between that and going on a vitriolific tirade of defamation into a microphone in a public forum. So don't try to draw any moral equivalencies here. I ain't buyin'.
About Martha. Love her stuff. The woman has great taste in decor. I'll still buy her stuff. She did something wrong, and she's paying the price. It doesn't mean the world needs to shun her from now on. She's paying her debt to society, and that should be the end of it.
And I really couldn't care less about live coverage of the sentencing, and excactly what time it was going to happen, and who she hugged on the way in. Just let me know what she got. That's all I want to know. Actually, it's more than I want to know, because frankly, I don't know the woman and it doesn't affect me and there's a lot more important stuff going on in the world right now that journalists could be reporting on.
Thursday, July 15, 2004
It's not just genetics, but genetics clearly can affect personality. I've seen it first hand.
We all have masculine and feminine traits. Men tend to have more masculine traits than women do, and women tend to have more feminine traits than men do. Men whose balance is heavily skewed in the masculine direction are the "Manly Men", and women who are heavily skewed to the feminine side are the "Girly Women". And then there are men and women whose trait balance is close to the middle, or even a little to the other side. One of those traits is what we're attracted to.
Now... on to same-sex unions. In a secular state based on liberty, victimless crimes should not be crimes. I don't have a problem with gays.
But regarding "marriage", for as long as anyone can remember, in our language "marriage" meant the union of a man and a woman. Many do not want that definition expanded. I understand that, being a married heterosexual myself. Isn't it funny, though, that the only people that the Left demand we all be sensitive to are non-white, non-Christian, female, or gay? A lot of people are offended about the use of the word "marriage" to describe gay unions, but nobody cares about those people. We can label them "conservatives" and "rednecks", thereby dehumanizing them and marginalizing their feelings. Ooops! Wait... do I detect a hint of hypocrisy?
So here's my thoughts on a solution.
Should daisies be called marigolds? Why don't we just say that everyone is homosexual, or everyone is heterosexual? I'm for same-sex unions. But really, do we have to call it marriage? Why do we call boots boots and shoes shoes? They're both footwear. I'm not Italian, but I'm just as human as an Italian. Why can't I be called an Italian? I think if gays would back off on their demand to call same-sex unions "marriage", a lot of the hetero world would chill out about it a bit more.
Then the laws that protect marriages can be expanded to include these unions, and everybody wins.
Wednesday, July 14, 2004
1. A false statement deliberately presented as being true; a falsehood.
2. Something meant to deceive or give a wrong impression.
Relaying information to the best of one's knowledge, even if that information later turns out to be false, is not lying.
Listen to this 12.5 minute BBC interview (requires RealAudio) from 07/14/2004
Here's the thing that gets me the most. Polls are basically being used now by propagandists and the press (arguably more related than one might think) to sort of suggesst what the truth is.
If 55% of the people think "A", it doesn't make "A" true. Even if 100% of the people think "A", it doesn't make "A" true. What it does show is who is winning the propaganda war.
If last week 46% of the people think "A" and this week 51% think that, does it mean that last week it wasn't true and this week it is? Or is it "getting more true"? What if the numbers go down next week, or next month? Is "A" then "getting less true"?
The problem is, people don't go investigating things for themselves, and the people who are supposed to be doing unbiased investigating for them are more interested in a juicy story or have their own political agenda they feel obligated to forward in their stories. Investigative reporting is now exposè reporting. The emphasis is on finding scandal or something shocking especially when the truth is boring.
Tuesday, July 06, 2004
According to news outlets:
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, a British columnist for London's Evening Standard, says "there have been times [during the war] when I wanted more chaos, more shocks, more disorder to teach our side a lesson." and goes on about the power transfer "I found myself again hoping that this handover proves a failure because it has been orchestrated by the Americans." But, she says, "The decent people of Iraq need optimism now, not my distasteful ill-wishes for the only hope they have for a future."
Friday, July 02, 2004
What it really boils down to is that the Leftist Agenda is basically Social Engineering and environmental policies that are based largely on junk science.
What do I mean by "Junk Science"? Junk Science comes from studies and reports that masquerade as scientific research, but really aren't. Typically, these "studies" are done with groups with a particular political or economic agenda. The studies are carried out in search of a desired conclusion rather than to test a theory -- which would be true scientific research.
You get what you're looking for in these kinds of studies. You discredit or discard any evidence that does not support the conclusion you're looking for, and you hype up and emphasize (and sometimes manufacture) evidence that does support what you're looking for. This makes Leftism pretty much like a religion. Don't question the dogma. Anything that goes against the dogma must be wrong.
Leftists want to protect me from myself, which goes directly against the concepts of Freedom and Liberty -- which are what made this country great.
I'm all for laws designed to protect me from others -- that is, to punish others that would do me harm. But I don't want laws against smoking (although it's fine with me for property owners to ban smoking in all or part of their property), I don't want laws against drinking, I don't want laws against Big Macs, hot coffee, or even riding my bicycle without a helmet. I don't want the second amendment repealed or reduced to something meaningless by needless gun laws. (I believe Thomas Jefferson was right). I don't want the government telling me how to raise my children, and I certainly don't want the government raising my children through the school system. I don't want them telling me I can't use fireworks because I might get hurt.
These are the kinds of things on the leftist agenda.
I'm all for education so people can make intelligent decisions on the risks of certain activities.
Can you name a few Social Engineering experiments from our recent past? I'll name you a couple from this century:
- Nazi Germany
- Communist Russia (or China, or North Korea....)
Tell people what they think, and if they don't, justify killing them because they are a danger to your peaceful society. Don't think Leftists ever do this? Read your history books.
Liberty and Justice. Don't Tread on Me. Go Away. Exit, stage Left!
This man is a partisan idiot who is much more interested in Bush not being re-elected than he is in actual Iraqis.
I asked my Iraqi friend who has family in Baghdad a month before the war what actual Iraqi's thought of the impending invasion.
Her response was "They cannot wait."
She remains hopeful that the new government will lead to a free and prosperous Iraq. The left would like nothing better than for it to fail, so petty is their agenda. They have lost their minds.
Thursday, July 01, 2004
Reaching the spacious ski-ies
Fourth of July
- Dennis Wilson
The holiday weekend is coming up, and time to do a little celebrating.
For all the nay-sayers out there, there's no place in the world you're more free than in the U.S. of A. And this is the time to celebrate it. So, Mr. Moore, imagine trying to make your basically slanderous movie about Saddam in pre-war Iraq. Oh that's right... nothing wrong with Saddam. He's the victim here.
I've been doing a little snooping around on "Bowling for Columbine" and "Farenheit 9/11" -- This guy ought not be allowed to get away with what he's doing. I mean, fine, you're free to make any kind of film you want, but don't call it a documentary when you fabricate situations and try to pass them off as fact to support the conclusion you want people to come away with. The press is equally guilty for continuing to call these documentaries. They are most certainly not by anyone's standards. They are very, very slick leftist propaganda.
On the recent float trip, I was asked (on the second amendment issue) "Did you see 'Bowling for Columbine'? It's not a good idea!"
My response was "Did you believe 'Bowling for Columbine' accurately portrayed reality?"
I mean, check this out Bowling for Truth
Eh, that's all I've got to say for today.