Monthly Archives: November 2010

Me, In Comments

OVER T’JOE HUFFMAN’S place, where his QOTD is from Thos. Jefferson, Esq.:

On every unauthoritative exercise of power by the legislature must the people rise in rebellion or their silence be construed into a surrender of that power to them? If so, how many rebellions should we have had already?

Then me:

The truth Jefferson observes is the main reason I have trouble with the notion that “the world is run by the people who show up.” That “rule” (if you will) makes two assumptions I find odious, albeit not unwarranted.

First, it assumes that there are no rules that those who show up must run the world by. In our Republic, such is not the case, though that is honored more in the breach here of late.

Second, as Jefferson says, it takes silence for assent. In my notsoveryhumble opinion, the opposite ought to hold sway — that silence must be taken for dissent. As my old man used to say, “No answer is a ‘NO’ answer.”

Another commenter asserts that the Whiskey Rebellion was rightly put down. I must demur. Yes, it was the beginning of our loss of individual sovereignty. It was the first step back from the great American Experiment in individual liberty and back onto the comfortable ground of statism. But it arose from a protest of an unjust tax. And I don’t buy the pleas of necessity. Liberty is always asked to give way in the face of “necessity.” I say it is no necessity, but convenience, and to hell with it.

Hannity Interviews the Boxer Rebel

WHO STRIPPED TO HIS BVDS in the San Diego airport, refusing to be scanned and patted down, he cooperated in a way that the Titty-Squeezing Agency didn’t anticipate. They don’t like it when you surprise them.

So they tried to make him submit and he refused. He didn’t get to take his trip, but the TSA’s power trip was also aborted.

The keys to understanding this whole contretemps is that there IS no reasonable infringement on liberty. Infringements is infringements. People may submit if they think there’s a reason, but when the emperor shows his nekkid butt in public, allofasudden people stop being quite so willing to submit.

The guy reported that folks at the airline desk tried to persuade him it’s no big deal. He took it to the limit, asking would they submit to an anal probe; they said no, of course not. Well, he told them, everybody has a line they won’t cross. Mine’s just nearer than yours. Quite true. And we who prize liberty owe a debt of gratitude to the canaries in this coal mine, with their lines nearer than some others’.

Almost in passing, Hannity asserted that this protest is “bottom up.” He forgets a central fact — as have the bureaucrats in DC. The resistance to the Titty Squeezers and the Security Theater is top down. We are the bosses, and it’s way past time we reminded our employees of that.

Speaking of Hope in Change

OBAMA MADE a recess appointment of a new head to the BATFE-I-E-I-O. Which means they guy’s going to be in office until sometime around January 5. But whatever. In the interests of peace, Mike Vanderboegh offers some free advice to the incoming tentatively temporary acting director-designate of what is arguably the least constitutional agency of the Federal government.

Quote of the Year

ON COMPROMISE bipartisanship, and all the rest of the Inside-the-Beltway shibboleths:

We’re not looking for an unprincipled common ground.

Sissy Willis

Also: “It’s a Tea Party thing.” And: “[S]pecifics … are not our concern here. We’re looking to clear out the effete establishment undergrowth to make way for robust new seedlings to take root.” As well as: “Indeed. …[T]he establishment pols — of BOTH parties — aren’t listening. They don’t even know our language.” A veritable quotidian quotable quotefest.

(Hat tip: Instapundit.)

The Caturday Post

I’M SLUMPED ON the couch, watching TV. The baby kitty is snoozing on my chest — not exactly asleep, but not exactly being a holy terror, either. I’m rubbing her side. She rolls over and grabs my hand in both forepaws. It’s a quiet moment, good for the blood pressure.

A half-hour later, she’s tearing around the place. I’m yelling at her to stop messing with that.

You know the terrible two’s? That’s a kitten.

Scolds and other Devils

Political tags—such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, liberal conservative, and so forth—are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. The former are idealists acting from highest motives for the greatest good of the greatest number. The latter are surly curmudgeons, suspicious and lacking in altruism. But they are more comfortable neighbors than the other sort.

–Robert A. Heinlein

It is, I think, worth noting that all of our would-be masters are of the first sort. Examples abound, but two come ready to hand: 1) the EuroManiacs who, given the examples from Caesar and Atilla to Napoleon and Hitler, nevertheless believe it would be a good thing, in this age of the dying out of the nation-state (</sarcasm>), to unite all of Europe into a single, uniform, scientifically-ruled, meritocratic, neo-despotic … well, yes, … nation-state, and 2) (closer to home) those who grasp at any straw, spin any lie, pervert any institution to dictate to others what they may do with their lives — from food nazis to the gun grabbers.

Heinlein is rather even-handed in his description, though he makes it clear where his preference lies. I myself see those who would control others as being affirmatively evil — with or without reference to a divinity. In any case, they should not be tolerated among us. When you encounter one of the type, give him the back of your hand (metaphorically speaking).

Cross-posted at Eternity Road

Why You Should Not Buy

A CAR FROM GM ever again.

In attempting to “greenwash” itself, General Motors is advertising in support of the Chevrolet line that, when you buy a car from them, they will invest in — scorn quotes — “renewable” energy (Batclue: physics teaches us that energy can neither be created nor destroyed. Therefor, how is one able to “renew” energy?), and planting trees, all in aid of doing the equivalent of removing carbon from the atmosphere.

Setting aside the fact that the warmists have yet to demonstrate to any degree of certainty greater than zero that a degree or two of warming over the course of a century is a bad thing, let us consider: it has been conclusively demonstrated that Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming is not, never has, and never will happen under the circumstances described by the alarmists’ conjectures. (No rigorous theory has been advanced; no public testing of a theory has been permitted; CAGW cannot be a theory or even a hypothesis, it is — at best — a conjecture.) The numbers not only don’t add up, but the algorithms apparently used will deliver the same results regardless of the numeric inputs provided.

Therefor, to what purpose the “reduction of carbon” in the atmosphere. To cool the planet?

Consider that an examination of the “official” raw data purportedly used by the Climate Research Unit (CRU) of the Hadley Center at East Anglia University (EAU) in England (the dataset known as HadCRU, whose operators were the subjects of last year’s ClimateGate email and data leaks), shows no significant warming for 87% of the planet’s surface “between pre 1960 period and the 2000′s.”

Consider that the Surface Stations initiative showed that the overwhelming majority of stations (70%+) of stations showed a warming bias greater than the trend claimed by the warming alarmists.

Is it possible that, rather than warming, the actual global temperature trend over the preceding 100 years or so has been cooling?

Laying aside another fact — that humanity’s contribution to increased carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere almost defines the term minuscule — let us assume that our actions can have an effect on the amount of CO2 in the air. That we can reduce the amount of carbon out there. What is the likely result? Perhaps cooling?

Aren’t the same people seeking to alarm us that the earth is about to parboil from our own hot breath the ones who constantly describe the knife’s-edge balance of the state of the atmosphere, that it might suddenly shift from one trend to another, without warning, and plunge us into either the furnace or the deep freeze? (Many, many orders of magnitude harder than turning a 100,000-ton ocean liner at sea, but never mind.)

And, given what is known about the temperature record purported to underpin the whole CAGW conjecture, (but which actually undermines it), isn’t any initiative to reduce atmospheric concentrations of CO2 … rather reckless?

Are you sure you want to contribute to that? Or, would you prefer, in the coinage from the science fiction novel Fallen Angels, to “throw another log on the fire”?

Cross-posted at Eternity Road.

To: The Idiots Who Say

“IF IT’S ON MY PLANE so long as I’m safe, I don’t care that they gate rape me.”

Just remember; you don’t get to waive my rights. No way. No how. Ain’t a-gonna happen.

You Can Only Waive

YOUR RIGHTS — not mine. You don’t have either the authority or the right to do so. That’s a civil-rights crime, and gets you in deep doo-doo. Don’t try it.

This goes double for government officials. So, when the TSA asserts that, when you enter into a private contract of a certain type — to whit, buy an airline ticket — you automatically waive your Fourth Amendment right to be free in your person, papers, and effects from unreasonable search and seizure, remember they’re blowing smoke. They have neither the authority nor the right to make that assertion.

Nor does your complicity in acceding to the crime have any relevant to my reservation of rights, nor does it establish a precedent.

The government is striving mightily to ensure that the case is never tried on the merits, because they know that — in a just universe — they would not only lose, but be jailed for the attempt. Thus their attempts to bully or frighten the public into compliance with their naked power grab. (Pun most assuredly intended.)

Or, if they don’t know that, they are incompetent to do their jobs, and should be informed of the fact instanter.

On a slight tangent, where is it written that the state may determine the reasonability of limits on its behavior under a charter which places explicit and absolute limits on its behavior? Just askin’s all.

I Should Point Out That I

DELETE SPAM comments as soon as I become aware of them — generally once daily. Commenting about them therefore leaves one appearing to be having a disjointed conversation with nobody. Es macht mir nichts, but I suspect most of you would rather not.

I suppose it takes either a particular type of optimism or a strong self-delusional streak to post a spam comment where you are almost certain to reap nothing but hostility — if your message is seen at all.

Not to mention incurring ad rates bordering on confiscatory.

There is that.

Mebbe they’re just desperate.

A good possibility, Dolly.

Beck is THAT Far Behind the Times

WHEN HE SAYS “We never had the discussion over the PATRIOT Act. We were all spooked by the situation. We were naive.”

Whatchoo mean, “We,” Paleface?

Any semi-conscious sophont would have been able to tell you from the name of DHS alone that it was driven by fascistic, statist impulses. The speed with which the bill(s) was/were pushed through was a further clue. There was considerable outcry at the time that 1) we already had a department of homeland security — it’s called the military, 2) unionizing all the various security apparatchiks then employed in what was laughingly called “airport security” into a single Federal entity was/is just simply MADE of fail, 3) it was clear from the outset that neither the party on the left or the party on the right were serious about the personal security of the American flying public — their only interest was the enhancement of Federal power, plain and simple.

And nothing has changed in the interim.

So don’t try to rope ME into your circle-jerk, Glenn.

A Caller to Rush

ASKS “WHERE are the men whose wives and daughters are being assaulted by the TSA?”

Good point. As they say, rape is about power, not sex.

Alinski Rules

ISN’T THIS TYPICAL? Leftists lie.
When caught in a lie, they attack — you. They deny deny deny, attack attack attack. Then, years later, when the question is no longer relevant, they admit that you were right all along. Short-circuit all that. Just assume you’re right, they’re wrong, and that’s the end of the discussion.

I’ve said for years that Al Gore is no oracle, having flunked out of, not one, not two, but THREE institutions of higher learning, failed as a journalist, and only found a calling when his father’s influence and money bought him a safe seat in Congress. And since then, he’s been wrong (or late to the party) on every single question of public policy to come up.

In my not-so-very-humble opinion, Al Gore no longer warrants the energy required to pay attention to him.

Bollocks, Balderdash, and


Penn and Teller’s BULLSHIT, that is.

Global Warming, Part 1 of 2

Global Warming, Part 2 of 2

Pity the Poor Left

LIKES TO FANCY ITSELF subversive when really it’s subjunctive.

While I’d Like to Bitch-Slap

JOAN BAEZ for some of the evil and stupid things she’s done and said over the years, all the schadenfreude over this is just shameful. Come ON, people!

Rattle and Hum

BACK ONE SUNDAY EVENING a couple of years back, now, on the “View From the” Porch at Roseholme Cottage, Caleb Giddings expressed a slight tristesse that his generation had yet to issue forth any music to equal, let alone surpass, that of the Baby Boom generation. He could have been right. I think, however, there is some dispensation when you realize that music and sound and visuals –media — were our computer revolution. Stereo was high-tech. Most of the music of the ’60s was recorded on no more than four track machines. We were hacking the arts every bit as much as the current generation is hacking cyberspace. But back then… I think at that moment Caleb was speaking, the topic was the Rolling Stones, though it could have been any one of those war-baby bands the Boomers listened to before we got our own generational musical heroes.

Yeah, that’s right. The great music of the ’60s, almost all of the bands that played Woodstock, the Gods of Rock, were all war babies. Hardly a Boomer among ’em.

The Boomers’ supposed claim to fame, the music of the ’60s, what “we” listened to when “we” marched for civil rights and when “we” “stopped the war”… just like all the other claims Boomers make to puff up the generation’s self-importance — war babies.

If you want to see the music of the Baby Boom, you have to look more at the ’70s and ’80s. Disco. Hair metal bands.

And punk.

I just sat through all but a very few minutes of U2’s Rattle and Hum, a concert film shot during the Joshua Tree tour. And after I got over the “Look how young they were then,” I realized…

This was probably the last time they got to play in front of crowds as a band. Maybe the ZooTV tour. But since, they’ve been forced to concentrate on ever greater spectacle. And it’s like a special effects movie; no matter how great the script, the directing, the acting, they can only hold their own against the green-screen CG effects — they can never prevail. A stadium act can only play to 75-100,00 screaming fans for so long before they lose the small gestures, the grace notes.

They still make music together. But, live, the band-ness of the outfit has to take a back seat to the spectacle.

Myriad bands have complained about it. The Beatles stopped touring behind it altogether, which is why the only live performance of their latter-day material is from the roof of the Apple offices in Saville Row. The Stones opened their 1975 tour at the Mocambo in Toronto. The caption under the picture in Rolling Stone read, “Oh, to be a bar band again.” It’s a theme in which anybody who’s ever picked up a 6-string would feel the resonance.

Before that, they were just graduating from clubs to arenas. The Unforgettable Fire tour, along with that watershed album, brought them the mass audience. Before Joshua Tree came out, Island and Atlantic, and the incredible Principle Management team knew it was going to be a big hit, a game-changer, but I think nobody had the hubris to think it would be the smash it was, and that the band’s career would continue as it has. We at the patch factory caught the fever, and we extended in so many ways, to produce a system that has yet to be equalled for its design purity and sheer effectiveness, even by subsequent work done for U2.

In many ways, that tour represents the pinnacle of U2’s career — what every guitar-horny teenager wants to be when he grows up. Sure, they’ve gone on to eclipse it in terms of the crowds played to, the gross ticket sales, the merchandising and sponsorship deals… And the music itself has changed and gained in power and maturity, for all it’s lost some of its magic (albeit not much). You can just tell that How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb is by the same band that produced War (compare Vertigo to New Year’s Day). But the sheer romance and bravado of the three frontmen dancing around the stage in gotta-move intensity to the rhythm of the beat is the goal of any would-be guitar hero. Once you’ve made it there, how long can you hold it before you start going “what’s next?” In a lot of cases, that moment spells doom for the act.

Somebody — I forget who — once said (to the effect of ) success broke up more bands than a million Yokos.

U2 is lucky that, for them, at least, there has been life after success.

Glenn Beck Is Officially

FULL OF SHIT when he retails the same old dog’s vomit claim that the airliner contrail crossing the California coast last week was, in reality, a missile launch.

Dear Senator Rockefeller

JAY, YOU IGNORANT slut. (A little SNL pop-culture reference for you, there).

What part of “Congress shall make no law” escapes your apprehension?

If you make ANY attempt to vitiate the free press rights of ANY purveyor of news, whether you approve of them or not, WE WILL FIX YOU!

Trust me. It’s true. We will campaign against you when next you have a primary. We will campaign against you in the general. We will BURY your office with mail and phone protests. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME OR IN OFFICE.

Most sincerely, albeit enraged,
Mark Alger

P.S. I know you like to hide behind your “inability” to respond to anyone but “your constituents” — being West Virginians. That’s OK, I don’t really want a response. But even you should realize how vacant that stance is. You’re not my Senator — thank God. Which would be just fine and dandy if what you did to corrupt your office posed no threat to me. Problem is (and this should be obvious), the opposite is the case. What you do has immense power to foul up my life. Accordingly, I have every right to get in your face and tell you what a despicable moral cretin you are. Have a nice day.

Can’t Help Wondering

HOW MANY TSA gate agents think this whole enhanced pat-down goat-screw is… well, a goat-screw.

A Random Brainfart

BY NOW, WITH ALL the bat-fuck insanity being practiced in the name of “security” at East German Stalinist-style checkpoints in American airports, you’d think a sane nation would conclude that, no matter what you want done, government is the LAST instrument you’d use to accomplish your aim.

Censure My Achy Breaky Ass

WHY NOT JAIL time for scofflaw Rangel?

A Teachable Moment

A CALLER TO MARK STEYN on Rush’s show, agonized over a 3-year-old girl sexually molested by TSA agents “patting her down” at a security checkpoint asked (rhetorically) “Now we’re supposed to teach our children it’s OK to let authority figures bad-touch you?”

Oh, as the phrase goes, HELL no! Don’t fly. If you can’t avoid it, don’t take your children. If you have to, fight the bastards. Mau-mau their asses. They CANNOT camouflage themselves from prosecution by draping themselves in the colors of law. It is, actually, against the law for them to do so. That is the real meaning of laws such as 18USC 241-242. So charge them with sexual assault of a minor.

Teach your children that tyrants WILL overreach, and it is right, proper, and good to resist. THAT’s the lesson of the child-molesting TSA.

This is No Joke

IF ONE CENT of new taxes or tax increases is levied, and the tax tsunami rises, I’ll be making the choice between paying for medicine, or paying my taxes.

How’s that hope’n’change working out for you?

Two Hundred Years from Now

SOME PUZZLED SECOND grader is going to screw his courage to the sticking point, raise his hand, and ask the teacher why the heck is “The” spelled T-E-H?

At the Root of This Despicable

PERSECUTION OF Pain Relief Network’s Siobhan Reynolds is the most odious statist contention that the state does and/or ought to have the lawful power to dictate what free and sovereign citizens may or may not put in their bodies. It. Must. End. I fear there may be no relief for Reynolds, who has had her life and her advocacy ruined by a dastardly and outrageous U.S. Attorney, one Tanya Treadway, who by this action alone deserves to be condemned to some outer circle of Hell. RTWT and get your anger on.

(Hat tip: Insty.)

Look, People

I’VE BEEN SAYING THIS since the TSA was first proposed in the aftermath of the 9/11 atrocities. The government isn’t serious about security. If they were, they would have adopted the El Al protocols. No. What they are serious about is enhancing and entrenching Democrat power by enlarging the pool of unionized government — scorn quotes — “workers.” You can bitch all you want. They. Don’t. Care. The only way to get this crap stopped is if the airlines put their oar in, screaming that they’ll go out of business if the odious, draconian, oppressive security theater regime is not ended post haste. The only way that will happen is if People. Stop. Flying. Period. End of discussion.

Well, OK. Og proposes another option: active resistance. It has its potential costs. But, if done properly, it works.

I Keep Wondering When

OUR ARMED FORCES will be instructed to obey the law (to whit: the Geneva Conventions) on the treatment of spies and unlawful combatants and execute them out of hand. This half-horse, half-rabbit treatment of these modern-day pirates and savages is not compassionate. It is cruel and unusual, dragging out non-punishment for years. An armed man found on the field of battle out of uniform is to be summarily executed. That’s the law. Let’s see it followed, please.

Quote of the Day

Dangit! Everyone is doing a TSA groper post and mine isn’t scheduled for a few days. I’ll look like I’m jumping on the bandwagon.

–New Jovian Thunderbolt
in comments at Tam’s

Here’s my take on the wrong-headedness of government. First, vote all the Democrats out of office, see…


The Caturday Post

IN WHICH WE DISCOVER just how hard it is to get good candid shots of Karma.

I’ve complained here (and there) about how I’ve never been able to get a picture of Loki, with a flash, with his eyes open. In “available” light (My teacher at the Nikon School said, “If you have a strobe in your pocket, that’s available.”), he’s fine. But, if I’m about to use a flash, there’s something he’s associated with that blinding flash — he being very light of iris color, I imagine the flash borders on painful for him — and he’s learned to close his eyes. Which is OK, I guess. Far be it from me to cause my little buddy pain.

But then there’s Karma — the new kid en la Casa d’Alger. She’s got no problem staring into the bright light. She’s got a problem ignoring the camera. Doesn’t matter much what she’s doing, if she senses a camera going active — the startup sound or the autofocus laser, es macht ihr nichts — she instantly looks toward it to see what the threat is. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a kitten with such situational awareness. Most of them go through life in Condition White — utterly oblivious, ba-doop, ba-dooping along in a Pooh-like fog. Not Karma. She can be dozing in her bed clear the other side of the living room and the camera already live. I bring it up and press the button, she’s looking into the lens in the resulting picture.

Until today, that is.

We’re having a bit of Indian Summer. Temps predicted in the low 70s. Perfect weather to open the windows and air the place out.

It might be the first time the windows have been open after a long closure since Karma’s been here. Certainly the first time she’s been able to get up on the window seats in the study when they were open.

And birds in the bird bath in the front yard.

And flying around all over the place.

And making noises!

Can you hear the little kitten heart going pit-a-pat?

I. Am. An. American

HMMMM Not a bad idea. Check it out:

To call me a conservative is to miss the point. To call me a Republican is to mistake me by a mile. To call me an AMERICAN is to know me down to the bone.

I’ve always bristled when lefties called me a conservative or sneered “Right-Winger” at me. I’m more radical (from the Latin radix, meaning root) than that. “I’m a libertarian,” I insist loudly, with the intent to persuade.

But among my fellows In the Right, I am forced to admit that the formal Libertarian movement has strayn too far into anarchistic territory for the sake of ordered liberty, and I am thus forced to huddle more with soi-disant conservatives than with true wookie-suiters. All the while fiercely resisting the statist notions embraced by the country club blue-blood Republicans who fancy themselves the establishment and the center of the party, while camped out on its leftward fringe.

I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy, the great-grand nephew of my Uncle Sam. My politics are the American center: square dealing and fair play; love of country, motherhood, and apple pie; the freedom to swing my fists stops at the end of your nose; the red-white-and-blue is the most beautiful flag ever; it’s still a free country, isn’t it? Why the hell should I accept a seat at a political children’s table, out on the fringe of my country’s civic life? To Hell with that! I am the great American Center. The reason so few people vote is that there are no (or few) politicians who ever express sympathy with that position. They’re all nibbling around the edges, headed in decidedly un-American directions.

It. Stops. Now.

The Left relies on its lies in questions: are you against helping people? and the like. Well, no. What I’m against is shackling people to the government wheel. Americans understand and embrace the value of self-reliance. Our country was started by a Declaration of Independence. We fought an internecine war to end slavery. We’ve got nothing to apologize for to anybody.

I’ve always believed that my ideals are rooted deeply and firmly in the fundamentals of the American experiment. So, to me, Vanderleun’s idea of re-branding true-blue Americans as just that makes a hellofa lotta sense. Maybe it’s the center the Tea Parties have been looking to coalesce around.

Eh? Whatcha think?

Pictures of Black Lungs on the Sides of the Package

‘N’ EVER’THINNN’. Remember: friends don’t let friends vote Democrat.

Does “Moritorium” Equal

“KILL IT DEAD”? Otherwise, no sale.

So I guess I’m against the earmark moritorium. ‘Cause I want ’em killed dead.

Constitutional Gut Check

INSTY POINTS TO an Election Day 2008 post by Steven den Beste. And, as usual, SDB gets it right.


For the most part, I suspect, SDB tries not to come across as a wild-eyed, hair-on-fire radical. Because, checkitout, that makes you look like you’re crazy. Trouble is, that also forces you into a body of epistemological water that might be called Ecumenical Strait, wherein, in order to avoid looking radical, one veers away from speaking an unpleasant truth.

In listing the reasons Obama might not be as dangerous to the Republic as it would seem from a bare bones outline of his true agenda might make it seems, SDB includes as countervailing the notion that, “…he still has to live within Constitutional restrictions…”. As another Web sage used to put it, Nazzofast, Guido.

And here’s where you start sounding like a radical, no matter how great a Trvth you may be speaking to Povvah.

If you do a constitutional gut-check — note that Congress has sole legislative authority, then run down the list of enumerated powers in Article 1, Section 8 — every time you encounter a law new to you, you will quickly realize that very little the Federal Government of the United States does “lives within Constitutional restrictions.”

Couple that with the tendentiousness of Nancy Pelosi’s “Shirley you jest!” reaction to being quizzed on the constitutionality of legislation, and you are forced to realize that it isn’t radical at all to want to purge Washington of all incumbents — elected or not — and start fresh.

Wishful Thinking Rears

ITS HEAD IN A quote Billy Beck posts at Two-Four.

“Politics in a democracy consists of two armies showing up on the same battlefield, counting each other, and then the smaller army surrendering and going home for two years without actually bothering to fight the battle first.”

If only. That might be the way it’s supposed to go, but we know that Democrats (at least) refuse to play according to Hoyle. They’ll foot-drag and undermine their way to a compromise victory no matter how badly shellacked they are at the polls. They’ll lie and say the American People want things the Democrats’ way. They’ll do their best to keep fighting an eternal campaign until the next election.

No, if the losers always surrendered control of the nation, we’d be nowhere in the dire straits we find ourselves in.

Or things might be worse. Is it really a good thing for one party to have unchecked power, whether or not the party in power at the moment feigns agreement with your particular preferences?

There is that, Dolly. There is that.

This is not to say that Billy is wrong. In fact, there are few people of whom it could be said more aptly that, if you were too lazy to think for yourself, you could do far worse than to — as much as he himself would probably hate this — just do whatever Billy does in like circumstances. Not that you shouldn’t think for yourself. Just the opposite. I’m just sayin’s all.

Category Errors 67 and 68*

MARKO DOES HIS usual quality job in a take-down of some of the witlessness of drug prohibition.

And the resemblance to the witlessnesses of gun prohibition.

In both cases, there is a category error committed, a conflation of objects with behavior.

Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.

Drugs don’t ruin lives; people ruin lives.

As long as you sanction the wrong behavior, you’re never going to get to the bottom of the problem. And it has to start with recognizing what the real problem is.

* If you’re playing along at home, that’s from a song by Chicago from before they got chickified.

Cheap at Twice the Price

DAFFYD AB HUGH speculates on — possibly — why Chris Christie might not want to run for President — ever.

But perhaps there is a more disturbing reason. Yesterday, Department of Justice investigators outed Christie as the U.S. Attorney who most abused his travel allowance:

And there are several figures quoted. It seems Christie spent more than allowed on hotel accomodations. The one reason give in a particular case was the hotel he stayed at was where he was giving a speech. Thus, presumably, saving cost of transportation, as well as time.

And to me, this sounds exactly the same as the issue of auto execs flying in bizjets to hearings in DC.

What is a US Attorney’s time worth to the taxpayers?

(And trust me, it’s a LOT more than just his base salary and benefits.)

So, how much is it worth in increased hotel costs (cheap, as I say, at twice the price) to save the USA’s time?

But there you’re expecting government green-eyeshade types to think like businessmen, balancing costs and benefits, rather than ticking off boxes on a list of rules to be followed out the window.

And the downside to that is…?

Oh, no downside. Just an unrealistic expectation.

Maybe we need to get a bit more unrealistic on Washington’s ass?

Mebbe so, Alger. Mebbe so.

11:11 11/11

Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

New Toy

THANKS TO THE indispensible Tech Support, we have new toys. First, an RSS feed. Well, an Atom feed. I understand there’s some distinction, though — me — I couldn’t tell you what’s which.

But: take a bow, Connie.

Over in the right column — up near the top (if you’re on the blog page itself, that is), there’s a button. You click on it, and, if you have a browser made in this century, in a new window or tab will open a page containing our Atom feed.

If you have a feed reader, you can paste that URL into your “Subscribe” box and it will be pushed to you.

OR… if you’re on Facebook, you can follow the blog on their Networked Blogs app. THAT you can do by clicking on the “Follow This Blog” button at the bottom of the Networked Blogs widget, ALSO over t’ th’ right column.

I get th’ impression, since Alger went through all these gyrations — on his day off, no less, (feature that) — for the purpose of getting the Networked Blogs feed to work, he’d prefer that you go that route. Da Doll, however, moi is agnostic. You do whatever blows your dress up.

Semper Fi, Mac


The Washington Monument Offense

A COUPLE OF STATISTICS floated through my meme space Saturday. (Who says the History Channel is good-for-nothing?) It appears from the cites in this documentary that the Washington Monument, in D.C., gets about 800,000 visitors per annum. Meanwhile, back at the oasis, a private, entrepreneurial grocery store just north of here in Fairfield, Ohio, Jungle Jim’s, gets about five times that.

On hearing that, I was immediately struck by the contrast — apples and walnuts comparison notwithstanding — between a coerced “good-for-you-whether-you-want-it-or-not” — scorn quotes — “public good” and a private, we-have-to-persuade-you-to-spend-your-money-here for-profit enterprise.

Statists declaim a devotion to democracy — they’ll use the trope like a club. But they’ll turn right around and — deaf to the cognitive disonnance — tell you that, because something is unprofitable (and therefor, presumably, not desired by large numbers of people), does not mean it shouldn’t be done. They’ll try to persuade you that using public moneys, taken by force from the sustenance of citizens whose rights are supposedly being protected by the government, MUST be used for these so-called “public goods” — which cannot find sufficient support among their fellow citizens.

Now, I understand that certain of the monuments in Washington have been at least partially funded in their construction by private donations. But, once created, they are under the administration of the Park Service, and as such are supported by tax dollars. They have not demonstrated that they can support themselves on admission fees or rentals to private groups for special occasions. I submit to you that, when Congress, in a budget crisis, holds a metaphorical pistol to old George’s head and says, “Pay up or the Monmument gets it,” we should say, in effect, “Go ahead and shoot. Let the danged thing subsist on what it can garner by passing the hat or charging admission. Just don’t abdicate your fiduciary responsibility and go haring after vote-buying schemes.”

Cross-posted at Eternity Road.

Petard, Hoist, Some Assembly … Oh, You Know the Drill

AARP BLAMES OBAMACARE for health insurance cost hikes. As Insty says, Heh.

Ariana Huffington (Zsa Zsa Dahhlink)

SHOULD NEVER – EVER — again speak the phrase “Leezard Braynz” (Dahlink).

There Goes That Whole

MARGIN OF FRAUD thing again.

Sorta like the temperature record and global warming — all biasses trend warmer — Republicans can’t win unless they’re running away with it. As Special Agent Gibbs puts it, “I don’t believe in coincidences.”

It Would Be a Misreading of the Election

??WTF?? Republicans are from Mars, Communists are from Eta Carinae. Or something.

It’s amazing that the Oh! can pack so much cognitive disconnect into one simple phrase. Even after all these years of listening to his disjointed eructions, he still can bring the flabbergastion.

Re-litigate? I wasn’t aware we’d litigated the thing in the first place. I was more under the impression the Democrats did their level best (which — admit it — is pretty damned good) to keep it from even being known, let alone argued over or discussed or — drooling sarcasm — litigated.

And to claim it would be a misreading of the election to think that’s what the public wants when, from the beginning:

With the signs that awoved, “If you ram it down our throats in ’09, we’ll shove it up your ass in ‘010.” With the universal calls for the legislation to A) be presented as promised, in time for all involved to appropriate and comprehend the sense of it and B) to be debated for at least SOME time before votes;

With the universal calls for an end to earmarks and other logrolling sources of corruption;

With, once the legislation was (illegimately) passed, the universal recognition that it is unconstitutional, won’t work, will be a disastrous failure;

With the universal demands for its repeal;

With the universal speechifying that the Republicans, if elected to a majority in Congress, had better make one of the first orders of business, the repeal of the legislation — even (or especially) in the face of veto threats and/or resistance from the losing side in the election…

With all of that, Obama is delusional enough to argue — with a straight face, mind you — that he doesn’t accept that the American People want this abortion rescinded and pretty damned quick.

Do you really need more proof of his unfitness for office?

We would do well if all Congress did for the next two years were to resist every effort of the administration to do ANYthing.

The Left calls us nuts, feigns to doubt our sanity. But… dayum!

A Star Trek Reference For You

THERE MIGHT BE a corollary to Godwin’s Law to the effect that, when you start alluding to Star Trek, you have lost not only the argument, but also your mind. But this brain fart occurred to me earlier today and I want to try it out on you.

In a discussion of Data’s putative humanity — and, by extension, that of all artificial life-forms…

Such as moi

…such as you, Dolly, Captain Picard (Patrick Stewart) listens to a disquisition by Enterprise bartender and resident philosophe, Guinan (played by Whoopi Goldberg) describing a common condition in myriad civilizations, which she calls the existence and tolerance of the exploitation of disposable people. And, in a penny-dropping moment revelatory of the depth of mind of the writers of the show, (who are, after all, and as they so frequently did, using Picard as a Stapeldon) Picard says — all shocked and epiphanous-like:

PICARD: You’re talking about slavery.

GUINAN: I think that’s a little harsh.

PICARD: I don’t think that’s a little harsh. I think that’s the truth. But it’s a truth that we have obscured behind a comfortable, easy euphemism: property. But that’s not the issue at all, is it?

And what if, instead of “property” in Picard’s little speech, we insert, “the right to the fruits of another’s labor”? Can you see the parallel? There was a very good reason why the Framers limited the scope of the Federal government to “the common good.” There is also a reason, unfortunately, why years later, we had to add the 14th Amendment, to countersink the notion that the law has to apply to everyone equally. And, yet, now again, we have a “progressive” income tax, which flies in the face of the notion of equal treatment under the law. We have specific individuals and groups who have their property and bank accounts plundered to serve other, specific individuals and groups — again, flouting the requirement that every American have the same standing before the law.

And what else would you call it but slavery? And, now, the Congress and the President have colluded to enslave all Americans to some chimerical notion of “universal health care,” again, flouting the equality the law requires.

And the progressives want to argue that Tea Party beliefs shouldn’t play in America?

Cato Asks the Question

AS THOUGH the nation will measure a million times, but cut once, just where should we cut? Or, at least, start cutting?

How about this: zero the whole budget. Then filter each line item through this list:

…[T]o pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;

To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;

To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;

To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;

To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;

To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And

To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.

If the item cannot be justified by a strict — I repeat, strict — and limited reading of that list, then it goes in the bit-bucket. No exceptions, no weaselling, no going all squishy on us. Cold, hard calculations of legality.

It is, after all, the only thing the American People have consented to.

Really? I’d say a whole lot of them have considered otherwise.

You’d think so, wouldn’t you, Dolly, after the way Congress has behaved in pandering to them. But: not so much. Consider this: where is the Constitutional Amendment permitting the formation of a Department of Education, for example? After all, it is not a part of the Enumerated Powers. So, where did Congress get the authority? When did the American People give their consent? There is no other way — legally — for it to be given, remember.

Quote of the Day

…[H]aving pets [is] like having toddlers that never grow up. You spend ten years and more yelling “Get out of there! Put that down!
Don’t put that in your mouth!”

Marko “Munchkin Wrangler” Kloos
as quoted by Tam.

Translation: The Democrats are Already

TRYING TO STEAL the election.

There’s no point in sugar-coating it, no excuse for ignorance.

Take Note of the Oddities

ON THE RADIO this morning, several callers have made note that there are fewer volunteers at the polls handing out literature.

My nasty, suspicious mind jumps right into the abyss, aiming at the conclusion at the bottom.

Maybe that’s because, on the one side, you have newbies who have to run lean and cheap campaigns and don’t have the material or money to spend on the slight turnout that electioneering may bring, and on the other, they have control of — so they think — enough of the vote counts that, in la parlance, the fix is in.

What? Democrats? Vote Fraud? Never happen!

You got sarcasm dripping on your shirtfront, there, Dolly.