Monday, December 29, 2008


Gonna get me mah guns and go out and fahr'em in th' air!

Yes, apparently the Bush Administration has lifted the 25 year old ban on carrying weapons in National Parks and on federal lands. So now state laws apply.

If you can carry on Main Street, you should be able to carry in a National Park.

The "Progs" are fuming, but this was long overdue.

I signed the petition back in May and posted my "letter".

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I Been Tagged

I Been Tagged -- which, according to the rules of the game, means I'm "it".

Only I don't know anybody to tag really besides Morgan that he hasn't already tagged. But I can play up to a point.

I take it from Morgan's list that it doesn't mean your official title, but rather thing's that qualify as some sort of "work" that you've had to do. In which case....

  1. Babysitter
  2. Hay bucker
  3. Gardener
  4. Housekeeper
  5. Septic overflow weeder
  6. Wood cutter/splitter/hauler
  7. Vegetable canner
  8. Jam maker
  9. Cow milker
  10. Pig slopper
  11. Chicken feeder
  12. Cow/Horse feeder
  13. Chicken butcher
  14. Gourmet salad maker
  15. Fast food cook
  16. Parking lot sweeper
  17. Floor mopper
  18. Poison Ivy irradicator
  19. Librarian
  20. Dormitory Cafeteria Porter
  21. Record store clerk
  22. Record store manager
  23. Radio Weathercaster
  24. Computer programmer
  25. Computer Science Tutor
  26. High School Math Tutor
  27. Minor self-trained auto mechanic
  28. Office gopher
  29. MMAT artist/editor
  30. Computer Help Desk generalist
  31. Email specialist
  32. Web designer
  33. McGyver
  34. Email server team manager
  35. General computing problem solver/utility programmer
  36. Email Server Administrator
  37. Reporting Server Administrator
  38. Political & personal blogger
  39. Husband
  40. Step-Father
  41. Father-in-law
  42. Grandfather

Friday, December 19, 2008

Best Way I've Heard it Put Yet

This morning, during my brief stint in the car, I heard Glenn Beck talking about the proper role of government. Now I know he got it from somewhere else, and I would not at all be surprised to see this idea come up in the writings of the founding fathers... but he said basically this:
That the government should not have the right to do anything an individual doesn't have the right to do.
Talk about distilling it down to fit in a nutshell.

It sure fits my philosophy. I've yet to come up with an example where this principle wouldn't apply.

Monday, December 15, 2008


Here's something I heard on the radio and there's apparently something to it (finally had time to check it out). We're two states away from calling for a Constitutional Convention.

Two more states vote we have one, and today's politicians and judges can start mucking with the Constitution.

And "we" just elected a president who has said he believes the Constitution is out of date.

And we have large majorities of the Socialist-leaning party in both houses of Congress.

The story also goes that three states that voted for it now want to rescind, but the people pushing for it say if they get two more they'll go ahead with the convention and challenge the three states' right to rescind their votes after the convention has started.

Sounds like a rush job to me.

People are nervous about the economy. People want to be "taken care of". To the point where more than half of those voting apparently voted for a Socialist for president, and we got 'im. 1917? Anyone? Bueller?

I'm a little nervous. Are you?

Unintentional Hiatus

Haven't been around in a while. I was tired of politics. Exhausted, really. Plus I suddenly got really busy both at work and at home. I hardly had time to read news, much less think about it much. Caught snippets on the radio. But that's about it.

This caught my attention today. I saw the video of it this morning. And I couldn't agree more with the author. On Iraq and Afghanistan, I think Bush made the right calls even if the strategies didn't go well for a while. And it's things like this that remind me why I think deep down Bush is a more than a decent guy. He's got the right attitude -- and, I may point out, it's a Christian one. Do what's right. Love your enemies (to a point). Bush understands shoe-man's anger, and pities him. The man has a right to his opinion. Not to assault, but to his opinion. In this, Bush pretty much turned the other cheek, and did it graciously.

All this bailout stuff, on the other hand... and his stance on illegal immigration ... yeah these are things upon which we disagree. But I still think he's a decent guy.

I'm around. I'll probably slowly come back as I adjust to my schedule.

Right now I'm kinda shaking the cobwebs off. Hope that's better than a SNUL, Morgan ;-)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

What Do You Expect?

Would you expect that posting a sign like this in your buisness's window or door would make it less likely that you'd be robbed?

Probably not. So why do people think that the sign below and to the right here would keep bad guys from bringing firearms into their stores? I mean... Robbery is already against the law, I'm pretty sure. Can you imagine a guy planning out his robbery to pay off his dealer or bookie or whatever getting everything ready, going up to the business establishment he intends to rob, and then stopping at the door when he sees the "no firearms inside" sign and saying, "Aw, man??!!!" and walking away?

No, the only thing it does is keep people like me from bringing my firearm inside and potentially saving your life, or the life of one of your employees should things go terribly wrong.

I went into a gas station in rural Missouri last saturday ... well, I was going to ... to buy a few convenience items after gassing up. But you know, having to turn around go put the gun back in the car takes the "convenience" out of it. So no sale there.

The station has nothing to fear from people like me. The people they do have to fear will pay no attention to the sign.




Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Collection of Quotes on the Constitution and our Republic

Shamelessly lifted from another site:

A Bill of Rights is what the people are entitled to against every government, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference.
Thomas Jefferson

A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicity.
Thomas Jefferson

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.
Thomas Jefferson

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
Thomas Jefferson

To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.
Thomas Jefferson

A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.
Thomas Jefferson

I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on the objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents.
James Madison

Property is the fruit of is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise. Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another; but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built.
Abraham Lincoln

When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.
Benjamin Franklin

A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been about 200 years. These nations have progressed through this sequence: '>From bondage to spiritual faith; From spiritual faith to great courage; From courage to liberty; From liberty to abundance; From abundance to selfishness; From selfishness to apathy; From apathy to dependence; From dependence back into bondage.
Alexander Fraser Tytler (1747–1813)

It is important to remember that government interference always means either violent action or the threat of such action. The funds that a government spends for whatever purposes are levied by taxation. And taxes are paid because the taxpayers are afraid of offering resistance to the tax gatherers. They know that any disobedience or resistance is hopeless. As long as this is the state of affairs, the government is able to collect the money that it wants to spend. Government is in the last resort the employment of armed men… Those who are asking for more government interference are asking ultimately for more compulsion and less freedom.
Ludwig von Mise

No matter what anyone may say about making the rich and the corporations pay taxes, in the end they come out of the people who toil.
Calvin Coolidge

We contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.
Sir Winston Churchill

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot lift the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot build character and courage by taking away men's initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.
William Boetcker

The more one considers the matter, the clearer it becomes that redistribution is in effect far less a redistribution of free income from the richer to the poorer, as we imagined, than a redistribution of power from the individual to the State.
Bertrand de Jouvenel

To tax the community for the advantage of a class is not protection, it is plunder.
Benjamin Disraeli

Forced to choose, the poor, like the rich, love money more than political liberty; and the only political freedom capable of enduring is one that is so pruned as to keep the rich from denuding the poor by ability or subtlety and the poor from robbing the rich by violence or votes.
Will Durant

The mounting burden of taxation not only undermines individual incentives to increased work and earnings, but in a score of ways discourages capital accumulation and distorts, unbalances, and shrinks production. Total real wealth and income is made smaller than it would otherwise be. On net balance there is more poverty rather than less.
Henry Hazlitt

When a self-governing people confer upon their government the power to take from some and give to others, the process will not stop until the last bone of the last taxpayer is picked bare.
Kershner's First Law

To lay with one hand the power of government on the property of the citizen, and with the other to bestow it on favored individuals... is none the less robbery because it is... called taxation.
United States Supreme Court

The Constitution is a written instrument. As such its meaning does not alter. That which it meant when adopted, it means now.
United States Supreme Court

The question is not what anybody deserves. The question is who is to take on the God-like role of deciding what everybody else deserves. You can talk about 'social justice' all you want. But what death taxes boil down to is letting politicians take money from widows and orphans to pay for goodies that they will hand out to others, in order to buy votes to get re-elected. That is not social justice or any other kind of justice.
Thomas Sowell

The first lesson of economics is scarcity: There is never enough of anything to satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.
Thomas Sowell

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.
Ronald Reagan

The reason this country continues its drift toward socialism and big nanny government is because too many people vote in the expectation of getting something for nothing, not because they have a concern for what is good for the country. A better educated electorate might change the reason many persons vote. If children were forced to learn about the Constitution, about how government works, about how this nation came into being, about taxes and about how government forever threatens the cause of liberty perhaps we wouldn't see so many foolish ideas coming out of the mouths of silly men.
Lyn Nofziger

From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.
Karl Marx

Here is my principle: Taxes shall be levied according to ability to pay. That is the only American principle.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

Society's needs come before the individual's needs.
Adolf Hitler

The way to crush the bourgeoisie is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. Karl Marx

Democracy is a form of government that cannot long survive, for as soon as the people learn that they have a voice in the fiscal policies of the government, they will move to vote for themselves all the money in the treasury, and bankrupt the nation. Karl Marx

1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes. 2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax. 3. Abolition of all rights of inheritance. 4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels. 5. Centralization of credit in the banks of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly. 6. Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the state. 7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the state; … gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country... 10. Free education for all children in public schools...
Karl Marx- Rules of the Communist Manifesto

We can't expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism.
Nikita Khrushchev

More Thomas Jefferson Quotes:

All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.

All, too, will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression.

Every government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves are its only safe depositories.

Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.

Our country is now taking so steady a course as to show by what road it will pass to destruction, to wit: by consolidation of power first, and then corruption, it’s necessary consequence.

That government is best which governs the least, because its people discipline themselves.

That government is the strongest of which every man feels himself a part.

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.

When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Things That Irritate Me #2

Cars with bumperstickers for candidates left on cars months or years after the election is over. Especially if it's the one that lost.

Yup. Which reminds me of another "Thing That Irritates Me" ... cars with multiple bumperstickers plastered all over the backs of them. Which is why I have my "one bumpersticker at a time" rule.

So I pick my messages carefully.

I just went out to and made me this one:

A quote from Suzanna Hupp.

At any rate, if you want to know how I did this one ... it's pretty easy. I used one of their templates. They had one with the stars and the minute man under "flags & patriotic", I just added my text (I used their "paintbrush" font). Default color. I've used these guys before. They're fast and reasonable.

If I get 'em by Saturday, Jeff, I'll bring one out to mom & dad's for you. I ordered 5.

A little side story on that bumpersticker rule ... we haven't removed our McCain/Palin stickers yet, though it's on the short-term agenda. Can't do it well when it's too cold. At any rate, we were driving through Indianapolis yesterday, and a car pulled up alongside of us on I-70. The driver honked. Nice looking young black man, smiled out his window, and held up a "VOTE OBAMA" political sign. He shrugged in mock sympathy, still smiling. It was good-natured. We laughed and waved, slowly nodding our heads in acknowledgement. He smiled and waved back and drove on.

In Defense of Social Conservatism

It looks to me like Randall Hoven's take on it is about the same as mine.

Only he got to it first. Not a bad job, either. American Thinker. Good site, incidentally. It's one of my highly recommended ones on the sidebar.

Things that Irritate Me

I don't know if I've done a "things that irritate me" post before, but here's one.

You go into a restaurant that markets itself as an ethnic restaurant. Mexican. Thai. Chinese. Whatever.

And you hear American pop music over the sound system.

Seriously. My brother and sister-in-law, and my wife and I went to a Vietnamese restaurant in St. Louis years ago. We walked in. The lighting was subdued. A few oriental people scattered here and about. Usually a good sign.

Vietnamese decor, and Vietnamese music playing softly. We sit down. We get our menus. And before long ... is that ... is that Michael Jackson????

They'd put the Thriller album on.

The waiter came to take our order.

"What happened to the Vietnamese music?"

"Oh, you like? We thought you American, you maybe like American music."

Eeehhruuuhhmmm ... no. We were enjoying the other.

He put the other back on.

But I notice it all over. Go in to a Mexican restaurant. They've got the place decorated to give you the feel of being South of the Border. But there's what passes for "R&B" these days playing on the sound system. It sort of spoils the effect.

Not so El Rancherito in Effingham, IL. That place got it right!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Book 'em, Dan-o

Super Dan, over at the Daily Danet (sometimes in disguised as mild-mannered reporter "Mark" Kent), caught this over the weekend....
During the [Giants] game, the network aired a plug for an upcoming 60 Minutes interview with Barack Obama. This is what the voiceover said: “[tick tick tick] Now that he’s been elected, Barack Obama shares his plans for the country.”
Now that he's been elected ... Obama's going to share his plans.

Yeah. So this was all a contest to find out what Obama planned to do with the country? Frankly, yes. Because "Hope" and "Change" weren't really very descriptive. But that's what people voted for. Now they Hope they hear what they wanted to hear. It's too late to Change their minds. We don't have do-overs in the adult world.

If you have never gone and read the Danet, he's on my highly recommended list.

Monday, November 17, 2008

What Do We Do Now?

Several years ago, a friend, a history professor, told me he belonged to the NRA. He doesn't own a firearm to this day. He's never owned a firearm. I'm not even sure he's ever fired one. I had been thinking about it, and I owned at least one firearm at the time. He shamed me in to it. I joined right quick.

He said he joined because it was the best investment in lobbying for conservative government, conservative politicians -- that you can make. It's only $35 a year right now, and you get your choice of three monthly magazines they publish. I get America's First Freedom, but they have one that emphasizes hunters' interests and one that emphasises the interests of firearms enthusiasts as well.

Folks, for what's at stake, that's cheap. Which is what my friend told me then. Now you will get a lot of mail from them, mail soliciting donations, mail informing you of gun bills at the federal and state levels and postcards to send to your congress critters. I admit, I occasionally donate outside of my lifetime membership payments (I'm doing it on the EZ pay plan) just because I believe in what they're doing. (Actually, they'd get more money if you were NOT a lifetime member and just paid dues in the long run, but I'm sure I'll continue to donate when my lifetime membership is paid off.)

There's a lot of anti-gun money out there. Soros is one of the biggest financers of a world wide drive to ban firearms. The NRA is always looking out for these things, informing you, and lobbying on our behalf in Washington and on the local level. They're very diligent watch dogs. If they can count you as a member and (I know I'm repeating myself but this is at least as important) keep you informed, that effort is still more powerful.

So if you're smarting over the Obama win and wondering what you can do right now to counter balance what's coming, I urge you to join the NRA, and try to get someone else to as well.

It's going to be a big fight.

Click here to join now or Call 1-877-NRA-2000

Oh, and if you feel responsible enough, go out and buy a gun and learn to use it properly and to handle and store it safely. You can do it, and the more law abiding citizens we have actually exercising the right guaranteed by (not given by) the second amendment, the better.

Hope Won

Gack. I was driving out of my neighborhood the other morning and on the bumper of a car I was used to seeing an Obama sticker on ... was another bumpersticker that said :
Hope Won! Double gack! Like they were "Believing" Tinkerbell back to life or something. And now Tinkerbell is alive, and they feel all warm and fuzzy about it. Apparently it's some Oprah thing.

Great. S0 they really were just voting for "Hope™". Wing and a prayer? Hope that works out. So what do they get, Bob?

Dinner plates full of Hope™. Paychecks made to the order of Hope™. We can now Hope™ our enemies away. When we are confronted with bad guys, we can Hope™ their illegal guns aren't loaded instead of deterring them with our legal ones. Or we can Hope™ the police show up and stop the crime before we lose life or limb. Yup, another piece of "flair" to add to their bumper billboards. They can now say "isn't it wonderful" at parties and get nods of approval.

All is now light and hope, as The Lightworker™ Changes America into the Land of the Free Hope™.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Right to Approval

Thomas Sowell says what I've been trying to say. Only he does a better job. Which comes as no surprise to me.
Gays were on their strongest ground when they said that what they did was nobody else's business. Now they are asserting a right to other people's approval, which is wholly different.

None of us has a right to other people's approval.

Deja Vu All Over Again

So I'm reading Amity Shlaes' "The Forgotten Man" last night, and I get to this paragraph and something jumps out at me.

The book is a history of the Great Depression, with background on the lead-up to it and the cast of characters involved.

Anyway, this jumped off the page:
As the productivity gains sank in, the Dow marched upward still more aggressively, from 155 in February of 1927 to 200 by the end of that year. Many investors were now wilder than Wilson. New investors had discovered that they could buy shares without the cash to pay for those shares -- they simply borrowed on margin and hoped that the rise in the stock prices would cover their loans. The margin rule was not new, but the investors were. [my emphasis]
This is not all that dissimilar to what just happened in the real-estate/mortgage market. Real-estate prices were rising so fast and so steadily that people would buy property they couldn't afford, figuring the could sell it at a profit and cover the original loan. Combine this with the government, ahem, "encouraging" (closer to coercing) banks to give loans to people who wouldn't qualify for loans on their own merits out of some sense of "social justice". My guess is that nobody worried too much about it because a) real estate prices were spiraling upward, and b) the government implicitly guaranteed the loans anyway.

I noticed here in my own town over at least the last 10 years -- and at an even more frenzied pace the past 5 or so years -- housing going up everywhere as fast as it could be built. Huge condo complexes and apartment complexes. Big subdivisions with gigantic expensive homes. My wife and I often wondered aloud where all these people were going to come from. With the more upscale neighborhoods, we wondered aloud about where all the people worked in our community of ~100-150,000 that had jobs that paid well enough for them to afford these homes. We'd drive through or by 5 or 6 of these neighborhoods and say, "Ok, that accounts for bankers, doctors, and bigger business owners... where do all the rest of these people work, and what do they do?"

In short, since real estate was a sure bet and paid off big, people went nuts developing it. Too nuts. They overbuilt. And the dirty little secret here in America is this: population isn' t increasing that fast anymore. Over supply. Slowdown in demand. Prices crashed. People who had borrowed assuming that their equity would cover their losses in a worse-case scenario suddenly discovered they had ... miscalculated. Balloon payments came due. Variable interest rates (for those who financed at the bottom of the money market and at the same time maxed out their budgets) couldn't afford payments when the interest rates rose.

Packages of loans bought up by big banks and Fannie & Freddie suddenly had significant numbers of loans going bad, and the promise of the value of the real estate that backed them weren't looking good. And nobody wanted to get left with a rotten egg, so credit among the big banks that lend to each other got tight as each feared what the other wasn't telling them about their state of affairs. If I give you a billion dollar loan today, will you declare bankruptcy tomorrow?

Anyway, guess things really haven't changed much.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Prove It

A good friend of mine sent me this cartoon. He was amused. And I get it. I mean, there are people like this. But it's not the way I was brought up, and I was brought up in a pretty religious family.

And I was out reading this post at Morgan's Place (The House of Eratosthenes, for the uninitiated), where he made this observation:

It has become such a convenient narrative that religious folks are bigoted and intolerant. Too many people don’t care if it’s true or not. They’re meeting people by spewing this tired trope, making friends, and that’s all that matters to them.

This pushed me the last inch into posting this, which I was thinking about doing anyway.

Morgan's observation is consistent with what I experienced myself -- the reciprocal of what this cartoon says many times growing up and in College (where, frankly, I did a lot more growing up). And I think there is often just a LITTLE projection going on here with the hard core atheists among us. And I still observe it today -- as evidenced by this cartoon circulating causing knowing heads to nod all over the place.

The thing is, it's actually a false comparison. A baseball is a physical object and if you have one, it can probably be produced. With the question of God, we're talking about something that everybody knows can't be proven ... or disproven (if we're honest). Like I said, it's a false comparison.

I decided to turn the tables anyway and re-edit the cartoon to hold a mirror up to the people who look at this cartoon and think of themselves as somehow on the smart and righteous side of the argument.

I could just as easily say "I have a right to privacy".

And someone could respond "Yeah, prove it!" Or "I have a right to life. It is wrong for you to kill me just because you want to."

"Oh yeah? Prove it!"

One can be overbearing on either side of the argument, and the ones who protest the loudest usually are.

"Oh, so might makes right? Prove it!"



You know, the truth of it is, I was about there myself at one point in my life. By that I mean, agreeing more with the sentiment of the first cartoon. But I'm past that now. Because I don't have a need to make myself feel smart or seem smart to others to assuage my sense of self-worth. (Dang, been listening to Dennis Miller too much ;-) )

Maturity. Pass it on.

No Horse In the Race

Keith Olberman doesn't vote????

Apparently he was on The View, that bastion of mainstream thinking, and he told the ladies that he didn't vote because he didn't want to appear to have a horse in the race.

Now what in the world could possibly lead anyone to believe that Keith Olberman had a horse in the race?

Friday, November 07, 2008

Oh, this is too good ....

... the Fresh Prez of Bill Ayers ...

From Misha (who else?)

Google This

finnish documentary teacher obama mccain

Or just go here.

Yeah, home schooling is looking better and better.

Diantha Harris. Remember that name.

I Made a New HTML Tag

I was musing over at Morgan's Place
I made up a new word which would make a great new HTML tag. . Anything you put in BarackQuotes will not only be indented by the browser will also render a border of flowers, butterflies, rainbows and unicorns wrapped in a loop of elegant ivy.


I'm a big fan of Michael Ramirez cartoons. There's apparently another guy who has a similar style and bent on politics named Rick McKee.

This one came out Oct 23rd, and I hadn't seen it until a friend showed it to me today.


Mandate for Change

Behold the cultural contradictions of progressivism.

... something interesting happened on Election Day that didn’t get much attention. Bans on gay marriage were on ballots in several states, and they all won. In fact, gay marriage bans have ultimately passed in all 30 of the states in which they were on the ballot.

The ban in California was particularly intriguing. Proposition 8 would have failed in the Golden State if it were up to white voters, who opposed it by a 51-49 ratio. What carried it over the top was enormous support from black voters, with about 70 percent of them backing it. Hispanics also supported the ban by significant, though smaller, margins. In Florida, where a similar ban required a 60 percent margin, Amendment 2 just barely passed, getting 60 percent of the white vote. The cushion came from blacks, who voted 71 percent in favor, and Latinos, who voted 64 percent in favor.

In other words, Obama had some major un-progressive coattails. The tidal wave of black and Hispanic voters who came out to support Obama voted in enormous numbers against what most white liberals consider to be the foremost civil rights issue of the day.
The demographics may seem surprising at first, but when you think about it they're really not. These days blacks and hispanics are more likely to be strongly religious Christians than whites.

Of course I probably told you my own thoughts on this. There are no laws prohibiting gay couples from having ceremonies where they make life-long promises of fidelity and mutal responsibility to each other. There are no laws that I know of that prohibit gays from livng together (and if there are I think they should be struck down). I think gays can call it whatever they want: marriage, gayriage whatever -- what I'm against is having the legal definition of "marriage" expanded, mostly because that legal definition could and likely would lead to it being taught in schools as being "the same thing" -- which is counter to many, many people's religious beliefs and cultural standards, making it a church and state issue. The other thing that may happen, and things like this have happened in Europe - is the "hate speech" issue -- people merely exercising their rights supposedly guaranteed by the first amendment may find themselves on the wrong side of a "hate speech" lawsuit if they dare to merely state their opinion. "Oh, that would never happen." Not today. Not tomorrow. But it definitely would, eventually. Ask Piglet.

What it is harder for gays to do is to have their unions recognized as the same sort of legal contract that is assumed and enforced for marriages. But this can be solved by coming up with a superset word for legal purposes that include gay unions and heterosexual unions, and use that term in the laws. I'd even be in favor of replacing the word "marriage" as far as the law is concerned with some new word with a broader definition. This way any rights that are afforded to married couples could also be afforded to other types of domestic relationships as are afforded to marriage. What I and most other people, I believe, really object to is the re-definition of the word. Which is what the activists are really after. Forced acceptance through the power of the government. "My" solution has been proposed by others and rejected by the activists as not being good enough.

Anyway, the main reason for posting/linking this wasn't my rant (which you've probably read before) -- but rather the two facts that there is very strong resistance from the general population to this idea, and that just because a lot of people, especially a lot of people from certain demographic groups --- voted for Obama does NOT mean they buy all of his progressive policies by a long shot.

Michael Crichton - 1942-2008

I don't read a lot of fiction anymore. I read it voraciously when I was a kid, but as I always tell people I think College "cured" me of my recreational reading habit. Not saying that's a good thing, just a fact.

So I didn't read a lot of Michael Crichton. But I did see many very entertaining movies based on several of his books, and I was aware that he was a highly intelligent, very educated man. A man who knew the difference between science and consensus. An eloquent man who often spoke on one of my pet subjects, and that would be Anthropogenic Global Warming.

One of his more recent works was a book called "State of Fear" where he combined debunking of the Global Warming consensus with a wild tale, which may serve as a warning -- of massive "environmental terrorism", perseverance, and comeuppance. I did read that one.

At any rate, the WSJ published a lecture of his posthumously today -- one I will link to and encourage you to read.

Aliens Cause Global Warming

Wednesday, November 05, 2008


A Vietnam vet called in and told this joke:
We'd been out in the field for three weeks, and the sergant came out and told us, "guys, I've got good news, and bad news. The good news is, you're all going to get a change of underwear. The bad news is, Dave, you're going to change with Peters, Johnson you're going to change with ...."

Playing The Glad Game

Today we're playing The Glad Game.

We're first of all glad that we didn't have to endure the inevitible ... ahem ... "social unrest" a McCain win would have precipitated.

We're glad that it wasn't a razor-thin margin so we don't have to endure weeks or months of litigation over hanging chads and such.

We're glad the Democrats didn't win a supermajority in the Senate.

We're glad we (so far) still live in a country where we can have this conversation and say what we believe.

We're glad we can say that America elected a black president before any country in Europe did (take that, you racist Euroweenies!) [h/t: Morgan] (we do wish it were a different black president, but as the Stones put it "You can't always get what you want")

We're glad 55 Million people got out of bed to vote for a guy they weren't all that enthusiastic about precisely because they didn't want to have an America-Flogging, Redistributionist President.

We're glad someone like Sarah Palin can stir up the kind of empathy and passion that she did without putting on airs. We hope she sticks around and attracts like-minded politicians.

We're glad Barack Obama is not Joseph Stalin.

We're glad we won't have to spend the NEXT 8 years defending a Republican Party that had abandoned its principles and only gave lip-service to them when it suited their purposes. It was necessary. But frankly, exhausting. Now the Democrats can lie in the bed they've made for themselves.

We're glad that the Democrats are probably too late to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in Iraq. (Thank you for sticking to your principles on that one, George W.)

We're glad we won't be getting multiple robo-calls on our telephones each evening ... for a while.

We're glad that a significant number of Democrats belong to the NRA.

That's all I can come up with for now.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Gas Under $2

Yup. $1.999 today here in town.

I remember wincing at $2.29 in 2005. It was generally around $1.89 before the big speculation bubble.

See, it wasn't Bush and his Evil Oil Buddies. It was Eeyor-ish speculators, helped along by news media.

I Voted

Put the sticker on my bumpersticker.

It's a bumpersticker sticker.

United States of Pajamas

The wife just called from the voting venue. There's a line. She said a lot of young kids (college age), half of them in their pajamas. Really.

Now we do live in a college town, so your mileage may vary. But if you don't want the country run by a bunch of kids in their pajamas, please get out there and vote -- and please vote for the guy the pajamas kids probably aren't voting for.

Me, I'm dressed for work. I have productive things to do today in addition to voting.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Decision Day

I was on my way home today and heard a caller on a radio show call in and say that undecided voters shouldn't vote tomorrow. If they don't know by now, then they're just clueless.

I am fairly certain it was an Obama supporter, and at first I was inclined to agree with him. There is something to that argument to be sure.

But in the end, he said something to the effect of if you haven't made up your mind by now, when are you going to make it up?

And something inside of me said ... "Well, they have until 7:00 pm tomorrow." Which is true. Those are the rules.

The first time I saw the movie "Brazil", I went with my good friend Sarah. We almost walked out of the movie. I didn't "get" it. That was then.

I own the movie now.

In the movie, there's an election going on. It seems a little bizarre, but if you've been paying attention to the last several elections it's not so bizarre as far as how well it relates to what actually seems to happen as opposed to something that makes sense.

In the movie, each candidate had a television network, each of which showed programming -- sitcoms, adventure shows, whatever. Not political coverage. And each television network got constant, instantaneous ratings based on how many people were watching each station at any given time.

At a certain time on a certain day, whichever television station had the highest rating -- well the candidate that television station "represented" won the election.

To me, Barack Obama is the ultimate celebrity candidate tailor made to run in that kind of an election.

I spent Saturday evening at a co-worker's housewarming party. She's Romanian. Her best friend is also Romanian, as is that woman's husband. Three of my other co-workers at the party are Chinese. Of all of the adults in the house, there were four native Americans (no, not "Native Americans" -- I mean people who did not immigrate here or aren't here on visas) and seven others -- all of whom had lived under Communism. There were some interesting stories. None of the ones they told were complimentary.

Communism, of course, is the ultimate Nanny State. Ultimately, the state runs everything for the Good of the People™, and dissent is not only discouraged but actively punished. Because it has to be, or the system collapses even more quickly

Socialism is generally perceived as Communism Lite™. Neither has worked for long anywhere it has been tried. This is because it stifles incentive by mandatorilly "spreading the wealth". What it ends up doing is spreading the poverty, while a party elite upper-class exclusively enjoys wealth and power. There is no such thing as social mobility in such a society. Horatio Alger is dead here.

One of the stories told by one of the Romanians was about the propaganda. The radio stations were, of course, controlled by the government, and they were dull and filled with such exciting news that, for instance "harvest is five days ahead of schedule". Nothing ever goes wrong in a Communist society. Nothing that isn't blamed on "evils" like Capitalism.

And then Chernobyl came up. And another of the Romanians happens to be a nuclear engineer. He told me something I hadn't heard before.

According to him, Chernobyl wasn't on the grid yet, and they were running a test. But not like you'd expect over here. Think about that "harvest is five days ahead of schedule story". Then imagine the pressure for the test to go right.

But the test didn't go right. The reactor was shutting down too quickly, and if it shut all the way down it would be a day and a half, two days before it could be brought back up. Alarms began to go off. But the test MUST NOT FAIL.

SO THEY BYPASSED THE ALARM SYSTEM. They turned it off. And tried to bring the reactor back up. And it started coming back up.... too fast. Only the safety systems had been disabled. And the reactor core got out of control. By the time they realized that it was out of control, it was too late.

When certain brave journalists dare to ask the wrong questions of the Obama Campaign, they've been cut off of interviewing their candidates. When certain journalists' newspapers endorsed McCain, their correspondents were kicked out of the Obama express. Democrats decry their loss of complete control of what the public hears through the largely (80%+) mainstream media, and wish to silence Talk Radio and possibly even regulate blogs through the "Fairness" doctrine.

Barack Obama wants a federal ban on Concealed Carry laws. Even though it's been shown repeatedly that they reduce violent crime and save lives.

Spread the wealth. Silence dissent. Infringe on the right to keep and bear arms.

But he "loves" America. Well "America" isn't a group of people who live inside certain borders. America isn't a geographic region. America is the idea outlined by the Constitution of the United States of America. It stands for Liberty. It stands for Freedom. It stands for class mobility. It does not stand for universal health care and mortgage guarantees. It does not stand for government-created jobs. It does not stand for punitive taxation. It does not stand for world citizenship. And the Constitution was written to say what the federal government cannot do ... on purpose. It isn't a flaw. It was intentional -- by design.

[the Constitution] says what the states can't do to you, says what the federal government can't do to you. But it doesn't say what the federal government or the state government must do on your behalf.
No, it does not. And he makes it clear in the same interview that he laments that last part. It was designed to keep government out of our hair. Because the founders saw government as a necessary evil that needed to have strict controls placed upon it.

Which is ultimately why I'm voting for John McCain. Because Barack Obama doesn't love America -- not America the idea. He may love the people of America. Or he may love some vision he has of a different America. But not the America I was born in or the one I learned to love. He has contempt for that America.

Thought for Today

It's a blast from the past -- and old post of mine from 2005 that someone hit on Google last night. I've had several hits from people looking for things like "Tyranny of the Majority", and this one, "our fall will come from within". Good. People are thinking. And these hits are coming from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. Even better.

Our downfall will come from within

"At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? -- Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! -- All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years. At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide." -- Abraham Lincoln, Jan 27, 1838

Why does this passage call out to me for attention? Simply this: no outsider can turn us into a USSR, a China, a Saddam Hussein-led Iraq. But as we, as a society slowly give up our personal responsibilities to the government, so shall we sign away our liberty.

Remember, Hitler was elected. Democratically elected doesn't necessarily mean good. In the end, we as a whole get the government we deserve.

Friday, October 31, 2008

If You're feeling discouraged and think your vote won't matter

... you know, because of the polls, here's a little reminder.

A little word about polls. Polls are models, too. It's not like everybody who is going to vote is going out every day and voting in these polls.

Pollers poll a sample population, and then guess how well that sample represents probable voters, and what percentages of probable voters. To describe that, they ascribe weight factors to the numbers they collected in the sample and try to project what the actual voting population will do.

They are affected both by their inputs and their assumptions and their accuracy depends on how well the poller matched them with each other and how valid the assumptions he came up with actually are.

They can provide useful information, but they should not be confused with reality. They are mathematical descriptions about what the modeler believes describe reality. You know, like climate models. :-)

We Are the Grandchildren

“I have talked face to face with the godless communist leaders. It may surprise you to learn that I was host to Mr. Kruschev for a half day when he visited the United States, not that I’m proud of it. I opposed his coming then, and I still feel it was a mistake to welcome this atheistic murderer as a state visitor. But, according to President Eisenhower, Kruschev had expressed a desire to learn something of American Agriculture — and after seeing Russian agriculture I can understand why. As we talked face to face, he indicated that my grandchildren would live under communism. After assuring him that I expected to do all in my power to assure that his and all other grandchildren will live under freedom he arrogantly declared in substance:

“ ‘You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism. We won’t have to fight you. We’ll so weaken your economy until you’ll fall like overripe fruit into our hands.’

“And they’re ahead of schedule in their devilish scheme.” (Ezra Taft Benson “Our Immediate Responsibility.” Devotional Address at Brigham Young University. circa 1968.”)

If you're my age, you are about the same age as Benson's grandchildren.

Now, look at this quote from an Obama supporter Peggy Joseph at a Florida rally after Obama's 30 minute infomercial the other night:

"It was the most memorable time of my life. I ... I ... it was a touching moment. Because ... I never thought this day ever happen. I won't have to worry about putting gas in my car, I won't have to worry about paying my mortgage. You know, If I, if I help him, he's gonna help me."
I'd say we're about there.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Party of Privacy

"Helen Jones-Kelley, the director of Ohio's Job and Family Services Division insisted that she has everyone who gets public attention checked to see if they owe family support. Now with more detail about the searches performed on Joe Wurzelbacher, Joe the Plumber, Jones-Kelley acknowledges she didn't quite tell the whole truth. Her department also ran checks on taxes and welfare payments to see if they could catch Joe the Plumber cheating the system.

For God sakes, if you want to tap a terrorist phone you have to go to FISA in the middle of the night, with hat in hand and beg ... a plumber, playing catch in the street on a cul de sac in Ohio asked a random question to one of our two presidential candidates, the one who insists he's an agent of change, and he ends up being audited and vivisected and and procto-examed like a farmer stolen from his bed by aliens in the middle of the night. Whitley Strieber, 'Communion'. "-- Dennis Miller 10/30/08

And, of course, they're the party of tolerance and open exchange of ideas. Like when someone's going on a radio program in Chicago who has a bone to pick with Obama, supporters are urged to flood the station with calls, or when WFTV Anchor Barbara West asks a straight question that Biden tries to laugh off, and now that station is banned from interviewing the candidates.

LA Times Tape

It's not really the tape.

It's the double standard.

If it were McCain, the Times would find within it some "duty" to release the tape.

In. The. Tank.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

It's a Gas

When we left for California a couple of weeks ago, gas was $2.79 here. Got back and it was $2.39 ... now it's $2.29 ....

Oil prices are down below $85 a barrel.

Which just shows t' go ya, speculation had a BUNCH to do with it. You know, kind of like the housing market. It wasn't evil BushHitlerCheneyHaliburtonIndustrioMilitaryComplex ... no. It was Wall Street.

Pop quiz. Wall Street is backing mostly:
A) Democrats
B) Republicans
Bet most of America'd gets that one wrong.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Good Thing

Sometimes we here at the blog that even fewer people read ;-) feel like we're not making much difference out there.

One thing I have noticed in the past few weeks, though is that I'm getting a consistent number of hits daily searching for mccain jobs overseas and variations of that where they get a hit on this post.

So it's gratifying to know that some people are getting my take on it.

Of course I also get consistent hits from people looking for how to build batting cages.

But other gratifying hits are on things like "political orientation quiz" and "selective misquoting" and my review of "an inconvenient truth" (often looking for that Winston Churchhill quote).

My favorite, though, lately, is sane thinking re the current election -- though I'm afraid that post isn't too much help, I'm glad it landed them here. Huh. It's outdated (from 2005) -- And both of the links in the post no longer work. Sorry guys.

It will be interesting to keep track of these predictions

From Pat Buchanan ... not one of my normal reads, but I gotta wonder where he's wrong on most of these:

What does the triumvirate of Obama-Pelosi-Reid offer? Rep. Barney Frank is calling for new tax hikes on the most successful and a 25 percent across-the-board slash in national defense. Sen. John Kerry is talking up new and massive federal spending, a la FDR's New Deal. Specifically, we can almost surely expect:

-- Swift amnesty for 12 million to 20 million illegal aliens and a drive to make them citizens and register them, as in the Bill Clinton years. This will mean that Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona will soon move out of reach for GOP presidential candidates, as has California.
-- Border security will go on the backburner, and America will have a virtual open brder with a Mexico of 110 million.
-- Taxes will be raised on the top 5 percent of wage-earners, who now carry 60 percent of the U.S. income tax burden, and tens of millions of checks will be sent out to the 40 percent of wage-earners who pay no federal income tax. Like the man said, redistribute the wealth, spread it around.
-- Social Security taxes will be raised on the most successful among us, and capital gains taxes will be raised from 15 percent to 20 percent. The Bush tax cuts will be repealed, and death taxes reimposed.
-- Two or three more liberal activists of the Ruth Bader Ginsberg-John Paul Stevens stripe will be named to the Supreme Court. U.S. district and appellate court will be stacked with "progressives."
-- Special protections for homosexuals will be written into all civil rights laws, and gays and lesbians in the military will be invited to come out of the closet. "Don't ask, don't tell" will be dead.
-- The homosexual marriages that state judges have forced California, Massachusetts and Connecticut to recognize, an Obama Congress or Obama court will require all 50 states to recognize.
-- A "Freedom of Choice Act" nullifying all state restrictions on abortions will be enacted. America will become the most pro-abortion nation on earth.
-- Affirmative action -- hiring and promotions based on race, sex and sexual orientation until specified quotas are reached -- will be rigorously enforced throughout the U.S. government and private sector.
-- Universal health insurance will be enacted, covering legal and illegal immigrants, providing another powerful magnet for the world to come to America, if necessary by breaching her borders.
-- A federal bailout of states and municipalities to keep state and local governments spending up could come in December or early next year.
-- The first trillion-dollar deficit will be run in the first year of an Obama presidency. It will be the first of many.

Only time will tell.

Woah -- didn't see this

Barack Obama:

I think it’s a remarkable document…

The original Constitution as well as the Civil War Amendments…but I think it is an imperfect document, and I think it is a document that reflects some deep flaws in American culture, the Colonial culture nascent at that time.

African-Americans were not — first of all they weren’t African-Americans — the Africans at the time were not considered as part of the polity that was of concern to the Framers. I think that as Richard said it was a ‘nagging problem’ in the same way that these days we might think of environmental issues, or some other problem where you have to balance cost-benefits, as opposed to seeing it as a moral problem involving persons of moral worth.

And in that sense, I think we can say that the Constitution reflected an enormous blind spot in this culture that carries on until this day, and that the Framers had that same blind spot. I don’t think the two views are contradictory, to say that it was a remarkable political document that paved the way for where we are now, and to say that it also reflected the fundamental flaw of this country that continues to this day.
I assume he's talking about slavery and racism. The Constitution does not even mention slavery or race. The blind spot was in the culture. The document itself was not sullied by slavery, and the Constitution was used to justify the correction of that flaw (which was far from unique in the world at that time.) No change to the document was necessary, though an amendment was made to clarify that race doesn't determine personhood -- men who were created equal and endowed by their creator, etc, etc.

To add to the Constitution the idea that people should be treated differently according to their ethnic backgrounds would be to introduce the non-existent flaw he wants to "correct" in the first place and could be used to justify all kinds of injustices.

The Old Politics

You almost can't hit this guy because it's gonna come back at you [...] but the whole thing about "it's a different politics" -- that's the "old politics" when you point out that he's practicing the old politics. - Dennis Miller

With friends like these ...

From this article.

Despite the media hype that we need to rehabilitate ourselves in the eyes of the world, the United States of America remains the number one destination of immigrants from around the world, some of whom take desperate chances with their lives to get here, whether across the waters of the Caribbean or by crossing our dangerous southwest desert.

Even when dozens of governments around the world join the United States in coordinated efforts to fight international terrorism, the media will call our actions "unilateral" if some demagogues in France or Germany spout off against us.

The American nuclear umbrella has enabled Western European nations to escape responsibility for their own military survival for more than half a century.

Lack of responsibility has bred irresponsibility, one sign of which are unionized troops in NATO and NATO bomber pilots who have office hours when they will and will not fly, not to mention NATO troops letting American troops handle the really dangerous fighting in Afghanistan.

Maybe the time is overdue for NATO to try to rehabilitate itself and for Americans to stop trying to be "citizens of the world."
Read those last two paragraphs again.

Lack of responsibility has bred irresponsibility, one sign of which are unionized troops in NATO and NATO bomber pilots who have office hours when they will and will not fly, not to mention NATO troops letting American troops handle the really dangerous fighting in Afghanistan.

Maybe the time is overdue for NATO to try to rehabilitate itself and for Americans to stop trying to be "citizens of the world.

He's Alive!!!

Yes. Not dead.

Went out to California to visit some family for about a week. It was actually a nice vacation (mostly) from the political scene.

Since I was in sunny California I did look around at the political signs and bumperstickers. I did see the occasional McCain sign, but they were vastly outnumbered. I had to roll my eyes when I overheard a conversation in a restaurant on pollution laws and such where the person flat out said "well, we set the standard for the rest of the country."

And what's this I hear this morning about the top donor to date to the Obama campaign was the University of California?

Isn't that a State University? Where do they get almost $1,000,000 to donate to a Presidential Campaign? Inquiring minds want to know. Hopefully, it's some sort of bundle given from faculty & staff out of their own pockets.

So it's finally being talked about in the MSM that Obama is pretty much a socialist, though from a standpoint of incredulity that it's being charged. And people apparently don't care.

And then we have this, from Obama (2001)

"... the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and the more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society, and to that extent, as radical as, I think, people try to characterize the Warren court, it wasn't that radical; it didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers and the Constitution....


You can craft theoretical justification for it legally, and any three of us sitting here could come up with a rationale for bringing about economic change through the courts."

Of course, I've heard this spun off as "oh, he wasn't talking about wealth redistribution, he was talking about "community organizing".

Really? Ok, well to be fair, I left this part out which went between those two excerpts:

"One of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was because the civil rights movement became so court focused, I think, there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change, and in some ways, we still suffer from that."
So he was talking about doing "community organizing" to organize voting blocks to vote for "redistribution of wealth" and "redistributive change" and "economic justice".

But naw, it was just the community organizing bit. Community Organizing. That's a good thing. Isn't it? Yeaaaaahhhhhhhh....

One could also argue that the KKK was just "community organizing". So, see, "community organizing" isn't always a good thing.

Actually what he said, taken as a whole, doesn't make any sense at all. It's a bunch of carefully chosen vagueries strung together and seasoned with some tasty buzzwords. Which is pretty much par for the course for Obama. He means whatever you want him to mean. Until he's elected. Then he can argue that he actually meant something completely different.

I remember back in the Mainframe CMS days there was a buzzword generator (just google buzzword generator -- you'll find several. Here's one.) BUZZWORD EXEC actually produced a couple of pages of complete sentences made up of this stuff that sounded great, but said absolutely nothing.

And even if the Warren Court wasn't radical, that it was a tragedy that ... and this is basically what he's saying, but it was a tragedy that voting blocks weren't put together to lift these "essential constraints" that the Warren court, in his opinion, didn't violate. You know, so the courts could do something that those "essential constraints" would have prohibited, but now having been lifted -- wouldn't be violating the new, less ... uh, constraining ... constraints. I suppose it depends on what you think the definition of "essential" is.

But that's the game here that Obama is so adept at playing because people are intellectually lazy. "But he just said they were 'essential constraints'." Yes he did. Practically in the same breath with arguing that the constraints changed via voting blocks of "organized communities". Feh.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Joe the Plumber

Saw a headline in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette this morning which said "Joe the Plumber isn't one".

That was the headline. Which is of course what sticks in people's heads.

When you read the article, you learn that Joe does, in fact, do plumbing for a plumbing company. Plumb-er. One who plumbs. He isn't "licensed", and he doesn't have to be to do the kinds plumbing work he does. He's a plumber.

Plumbers' Unions do not agree. But the people whose toilets and kitchen sinks function properly because of his work would probably say otherwise.

Journalists. Democrats. Unions. Democrats. Through the filter of the MSM? Joe the plumber isn't a plumber. Who might that idea help? Democrats. Who'd'a thunk?

It's a rationalization - a rhetorical vaguery ala "depends on what the meaning of the word IS is". Obama is very adept at this type of thing.

Krauthammer on the Xenophobia charges

Good article.

But I got sucked in to the comments section and found a lot of idiotic statements, one of which I had to respond to (he/she was referring to Palin).

.... Frankly I think the comparison and innuendo about Obama being a terrorist and/or Muslim are much worse than any marginal race-baiting ...
For the kajillionth time, Muslim is not a race. As a matter of fact, the assumption that if you're Muslim you must be of a certain race is much closer to "racist" than anything Palin has ever said. Incidently, neither is "terrorist".

Muslim is a practicant of Islam, which is a belief system with Sharia embedded in its core. Sharia law should be troubling to anyone who values liberty, freedom of speech, and freedom of religion.

I don't believe Obama is a Muslim. I also know several perfectly nice people who are Muslim. Some of them are pro-war Iraqis, -- I digress. But Palin didn't say anything about "Muslim". She did say something about "terrorist". And Bill Ayers, a white American, fits that description. It has nothing to do with race. The Left is the one who "made the connection". They're good at stretching logic to its limits and beyond. She said "terrorist" which is obviously a code word for "Muslim" which is the same as "Arab", which is non-white, so clearly she's trying to draw attention to the fact that Barack doesn't look like George Washington. She's a RAAACISSSSSTTT!!! Huh???????????????? The head reels unless you've been steeped in this garbage-logic for too long.

As a friend of mine once said, "yeah, we look pretty silly when people pretend that we say things we've never said." Or believe things we do not believe.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

More on the debate

Well, McCain showed us that ... he's not a very good debater. He's still a good guy, and he's still getting my vote because what he stands for is waaaaaaaay closer to what I stand for than what the better debater stands for.

McCain did score a few points. I think his single most effective line was “I’m not George Bush. If you wanted to run against George Bush, you should have run 4 years ago.” Obama's smooth counter was that McCain voted "with Bush" an awful lot. McCain should have counter-countered, "only when he was right. And at least I voted."

All that being said, Barack did not repudiate Lewis' remarks as out of bounds, inappropriate, un-called for, or wrong -- he hedged, like he does about practically everything else, using careful language, and then threw it back on Sarah Palin for not repudiating things apparently said at her rallies ... things she may not even have heard -- or chose not to dignify with a comment. Like I mentioned in my last post, we don't even know who it was or why he said it.

We know who John Lewis is and why he said what he said. And so does Obama. And he still hasn't condemned the remark. I don't expect him to, either.

I don't know that the debate changed many minds. My guess is that your average undecided voter isn't someone who spends a lot of time thinking about, much less learning about, how the economy works.

The FBI is investigating ACORN. Most people remember Wright. And Ayers is not the non-issue Obama would like him to be. If it were JUST Ayers, maybe. But it fits into this pattern of radicalism that seems to swarm around him like bees around a hive. Where there's smoke, there's fire, and there's a lot of smoke (and mirrors) surrounding this guy.

Oh ... as far as Joe the Plumber goes, Obama said ... (I know I'm paraphrasing a little here and am unsure of the exact number of years -- doesn't change my point) that he wants to help Joe the Plumber 5 years ago. Which of course he can't do due to that whole space-time continuum thing. This is more of that slick eloquence McCain brought up a few times. He says something that sounds like he's sympathetic to Joe, that he wants to help him. But he's actually saying, if you pay attention is, "sorry Joe, you're paying the tax if you buy the company now. Too late. No soup for you!"

Which is not dissimilar to Obama's excuse for being wrong on the Surge and sticking with the Party of Defeat instead. It's not what we need to do about the situation we're in now -- it's all about what he would (or would not) have done ... 5 years ago. You know, it was a bad decision to go to war in the first place, therefore, we shouldn't try to win it.

Question for you, Barack -- what should we have done several years ago when Bush sounded the alarm on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- and McCain a little later? Mmmmm?

How about nothing ... then we can blame it all on Bush next election, and pretend the Republican nominee is Bush and run against that. Even though we're the ones who blocked the reform -- probably for political reasons. I'd even place a small wager that it was blocked in part because it would be ... "racist".

Rude "pitchfork" types at Palin rallies

You know, I haven't seen anybody bring up yet that there is the possibility that the "kill him" folks were actually Obama supporters planting themselves at McCain rallies with the precise intent of precipitating this story line of the "hateful right wing" that we all need to be afraid of.

I'm not saying that it was. We have our kooks just like they do. But especially in this day and age of registering people to vote 73 times and hanging nooses on your own door and shouting "racism", or committing credit card fraud for Obama.... one has to at least consider the possibility.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

And now for something a little more fun

A bit of training this weekend. Here I am clinging to my guns. I'm gonna have to find me a Gideon's somewhere and put it in a shirt pocket

Nothing to see here.

Nope, not moving in a socialist direction here at all. What, are you one of those crazy right wingers?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Count Every Vote

If you've been following along in your readers, you might recall me saying something about whose votes should count. I put out for consideration a minimum bar set at, you have to have the gumption to figure out what you need to do to do it -- and to do it yourself.

That cuts out people going and paying people to register, and then driving them to where they need to go to vote. In some states apparently you can do this all in one step as well. I talked about how easy voter fraud really is in practice, especially with no voter id law. Plus, if you can find out how to register and vote, you have at least a couple of rudimentary investigative skills.

Well, here's an argument for setting the bar a bit higher still.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Here's another

Calling John Kerry a socialist is just calling him a socialist.

But calling Barack Obama a socialist is racist. (like ordering a McDonalds Hamburger)

The title of the article is even What Right Wingers Mean When They Call Obama A "Socialist"
Conservatives, now and in the past, have turned to "socialism" and "communism" as shorthand to criticize black activists and political figures since the civil-rights era.
Well thanks for telling me what I mean when I say something. I wasn't sure. I couldn't possibly be calling him a socialist based upon his record and rhetoric.

And while we're on Sowell

His previous article is a must-read as well.

Fact Number One: It was liberal Democrats, led by Senator Christopher Dodd and Congressman Barney Frank, who for years-- including the present year-- denied that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were taking big risks that could lead to a financial crisis.

It was Senator Dodd, Congressman Frank and other liberal Democrats who for years refused requests from the Bush administration to set up an agency to regulate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

It was liberal Democrats, again led by Dodd and Frank, who for years pushed for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to go even further in promoting subprime mortgage loans, which are at the heart of today's financial crisis.

Alan Greenspan warned them four years ago. So did the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers to the President. So did Bush's Secretary of the Treasury, five years ago.

Yet, today, what are we hearing? That it was the Bush administration "right-wing ideology" of "de-regulation" that set the stage for the financial crisis. Do facts matter?
Update: While I was packing for a trip last night I flipped the idiot box on for a rare forray into the world of 24 hour news and was pleasantly surprised to see Bill O'Riely raising most of the points I raised in the last few days, including this one.

I still can't stand the format, but at least it's getting some national exposure.

Sowell's Series - The Real Obama

Thomas Sowell has a series of articles he wrote last week which, like all of the rest of his stuff, are worth reading. But this here's a 4 part series on Barack Obama and who he is and why it's important.

The Real Obama
The Real Obama: Part II
The Real Obama: Part III
The Real Obama: Part IV

"... one of the biggest and realest of all issues is the outlook and character of the President of the United States." - Thomas Sowell
And in keeping with my last post and several comments I've made on the internet over the past few months -- here's a BSIHORL for ya:

Only other politicians' special interests are called "special interests" by Barack Obama, whose world-class ability to rationalize is his most frightening skill. - Thomas Sowell

"Hate" ... again

Malkin has a pretty good response to the "Republicans Filled With Hate and Rage" meme that's gone out over the past few days. Sounds like a classic case of projection to me.

Apparently a few people at recent McCain rallies have been overheard saying less than savory things. Even when McCain denounces them, the moonbats still try to spin it into a McCain is a racist gay-basher thing. Unbelievable.

If you want to talk about rage and hate, the Left has generated an encyclopedia of it over the last 8 years.

I've also recently read several articles about how McCain isn't being honorable in this campaign. There are rarely any specifics, mostly allusions to bringing up Wright and Ayers as assoicates of The One. The lastest article alleges dishonorable and low and sleazy behavior on McCain's part, but fails to go in to any detail on anything, only bringing up Ayers and trying to once again minimize that particular relationship.

In this article, we see the lengths to which credulity will be stretched to paint McCain as a dirty, racist politician:

McCain struck the racial chord in the Nashville debate. When an African-American asked his question, McCain assumed that he was ignorant of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the entities the senator blamed for the Wall Street meltdown. "I'll bet you, you may never even have heard of them before this crisis"
A guy in the audience asks McCain a question, and in his answer McCain posits that the man (or the rest of us for that matter) probably hadn't heard of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac before this financial crisis. If the man were white, nobody would have given McCain's comment a second thought. But the man was black, opening the door for the rationalization of a racist angle.

As I mused on Morgan's blog a while back
“The racist subtext was disturbing today when John McCain ordered a hamburger at McDonalds. As everyone knows, Ronald McDonald, when viewed in black and white, appears reminiscent of an actor in a minstrel show, clearly making fun of African Americans. Further, the buns on McDonalds hamburgers are white bread, surrounding the dark-colored meat which is oozing catsup, meant to represent blood, as the white buns depict two white men surrounding a black man and beating up on him - thus keeping him down. The “M” in “McDonalds”, the golden arches, is the first character in the word “Man”, as in “The Man” (also revealing his sexist nature). We can’t believe McCain’s racial insensitivity”

Once you get the hang of it, it's too easy.

What other mundane activity can you ascribe racial motives to? Maybe we should have a contest.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

ACORN and other Tough Nuts to Crack

Riddle me this:

What if I told you that there are groups of people supporting a particular political party that goes to the poor and homeless, gets them to register to vote, often driving them to be registered and to vote? (Sounds so sweet and innocent and good-Samaritanly)

What if I told you that people supporting that same political party work in "Community Organizer" groups like ACORN who routinely submit false voter registrations?

And what if I told you that one political party in particular is vehemently opposed to voter identification laws?

I'll give you a hint. Voter ID laws "discriminate". They're "racist". They "disenfranchise." Which party really likes using those terms?

That would be the Democrats.

Now of the two current major political parties, people who lean to the more "personal responsibility" end of the spectrum tend to vote Republican. Those who lean more toward the "government is here to help" end of the spectrum tend to vote Democrat.

So let's think about this. Much howling has taken place during this election on the experience and education of a candidate in the #2 position on one of the tickets (the #1 position on the other ticket has pretty much been given a pass on this issue, but I digress).

What about the voters? Whose votes should count? I'm serious about the question. Let me also be serious about the answer.

If you can't get up off of your rear end and find out what you need to do in this day and age of unprecedented access, get registered yourself and cast your ballot yourself be it by mail or walking or driving or getting a ride to the polls ... then you don't have any business voting. It's not important to you. How can I have any confidence at all that you have taken the time to weigh the positions and make a decision on the issues? A minimal threshold is set, at least, if we only count votes of those who would take the time to, you know, get up and go vote, or register and mail in their ballot. This would be the position of the Party of Personal Responsibility.

If someone has to show up at your house and lead you by the hand to register to vote and to vote and to drive you by the vanload to get this done, then you clearly are accustomed to having things done for you and by George, we know how you're going to vote. And so do the Democrats. Which I suspect more and more -- is why they do it.

Now... let me tell you how easy voter fraud would be in places where you don't have to show an ID to vote. You "register" a bunch of bogus names in a certain district. You know who is on that list, because your organization "registered" them.

Now if you are associated with this organization and you don't live in that district, you can go vote in your district as you, and in another district as one of the bogus registrants, and another district as another bogus registrant... all you need to do is give your name and "verify" your address.

Or, you can take non-registered people, citizens or illegal immigrants, and send them to vote as bogus registrants.

Again, which party is supported by organizations that exhibit behavior that suggests this might be taking place on a significant scale?

Which party loves early voting, and same-day registration and voting? It's not just getting "everyone's" voice heard. No. It's not that benevolent. It's targeted.

And which party is vehemently against voter id laws?

And which one screams the loudest about voter fraud?

It's like raaaaaaaaaiiiin, on your wedding daaaaa-aaaay.

Question about the so-called "Bradley Effect"

Has anybody asked if the so-called "Bradley Effect" might not be so much to do with whites not wanting to appear biased toward the white candidate, but to blacks not wanting to admit that they're voting for the white guy?

I mean, I can't see too many whites giving two whits about the skin tone of someone I voted for. But it appears to me that if you're black and you're not voting for the black candidate ... you're some sort of sell-out, Uncle Tom, traitor to your race.

Just askin'. I always hear it portrayed as a phenomenon having to do with whites. Has the flip side of that question even been asked?

I'm guessing not. Because the conventional PC wisdom seems to be that only whites can be racist.

Update: RCP has this article out today by a Lance Terrance, Jr.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Christopher Buckley voting for Obama

Yeah, that Christopher Buckley... WF's son.

When he gets to the crux of his point, he says this:
But having a first-class temperament and a first-class intellect, President Obama will (I pray, secularly) surely understand that traditional left-politics aren’t going to get us out of this pit we’ve dug for ourselves.
Sounds like a huge leap of faith to me. Why would I imagine that Obama would do anything other than what his two autobiographies (at 47???), his record, or his campaign say he would do -- because he's intelligent? Because he's educated? Christopher ... really. An intelligent man bent on implementing the wrong ideas is far more dangerous than a man of lesser intelligence trying to implement the right ones.

And I really don't get why he thinks Gov Palin is an embarrasment. Because she doesn't sound like a Harvard Graduate? (Wait, George W Bush is a Harvard Graduate.) She seems to "get" conservative principles pretty well if you ask me. Better than Bush. Better than McCain.

She appears to be sincere, authentic, and best of all ... effective.

As far as "attack ads" against Obama -- what do you call Obama's ads against McCain? And while Christopher is banking on education and intelligent mattering ... I think character matters more in this position. Obama appears to me to be a self-absorbed activist. It's not only perfectly legitimate to bring up his associations with Wright and Ayers, it's of paramount importance to bring them up.