Friday, December 31, 2010

2010: End Notes

Not my car, thank God

Well, we finally got snow, and boy did it bollix things up...

My wife sees the hand of God in everything, from helping us to not be late for some important event to little league games.  I'm not so sure.  Yeah, I believe in God, but does He personally intervene in sporting events or help us grab that last 50% off item in the bargain bin?  I don't know...

Today at work someone commented on a Men's Health magazine sitting around.  He related how he was reading an issue that contained an article about testicular cancer.  To his horror, he recognized the symptoms, hurried to the doctor, and found himself in cancer surgery the next day.  He's OK now.  It reminded me of my mom's cancer story.  Thank God she too is cancer free after an early 2010 operation.

That's not my car, thank God
It's been snowing in the mountains like crazy.  Monarch Mountain got over three feet; so much that we couldn't get there to enjoy skiing the powder.  It finally snowed here in town today, and on my way home I was trying to call Mrs. Silverfiddle.  She was with the little one at a doctor appointment and I was thinking of her because she hates driving when it's all slippery, and there were car wrecks all over town.  I was going to offer to pick her and little Silverfiddle up but couldn't get ahold of her.

Turns out she forgot her cell phone, had gotten stuck by the Dollar Store near our house, and decided to abandon the ol' minivan and walk home.  I was in the vicinity since I stopped by the Safeway to pick up some Safeway pizzas for us to eat that evening.  It looked like a demolition derby out there.  I spotted our old van next to the curb.  Most of the accidents behind it had been cleared, so I put it in reverse, backed down the hill and into a parking lot.  Having rescued it, I went ahead and drove it home, bundled up and walked back to get my car and bring it home.

I ended up helping two families get their cars out of the road and parked.  They just couldn't get up the hill.  It's so hilly here, and we have so many Californians and Texans driving little cars or rear wheel vehicles that have no business out in this kind of weather.

I should have headed home, but the guy in me kicked in

I have a Ford Escape, and it's a billy goat.  I take a certain un-Christian satisfaction in driving uphill and roaring past the helpless poor suckers hopelessly spinning and slipping and sliding.  I earned it.  I drove an old rear wheel drive Ford Ranger for ten years.  I knew every hill and how to time every light, and I never got stuck, even in the worst snow storm.

I drove down closed roads, the steeper the better, and ended up helping various people.  I was heartened to see teens out at every stop, happily helping people through slippery intersections.  At one stop at the bottom of a hill, I told the kids that the car we were pushing would never make it up the hill.  "No problem, we're parking him up on the right.  We've got it under control."  And they did.  There was a line of cars parked on the right hand side, and another teen was helping those who wanted to do a U-turn and retreat down the hill.

I got home and brought the mail to our elderly friend across the street.  She enjoyed my adventure story of the icy chaos and offered me a rum punch to get me home.  I told her I had a twelve pack in the car, I'd earned it.  She just laughed as I headed out the door.

I brought in our mail, and our second grader's teacher, a dear woman who has had the pleasure?  misfortune? of teaching all of our kids sent a nice card with a note to each one.  I clicked on the Christmas lights as each kid read their card thanking them for the gift card we had sent her.  Teachers spend so much of their own money on supplies for some of the poorer students.  It was the least we could do for her.

Merry Christmas!  From me to me...

I finally broke down and got myself an electronical tuner.  I'm so old school I'd always disdained such modern contrivances.  An older folkie buddy came over and had one, so I figured it was time.  It doesn't just work for guitars.  It works on anything.  It automatically detects the note and tells you if it's sharp or flat.  I  tuned up all my guitars, mandolins and fiddles, and the fretless acoustic bass.  My ear may be going--instruments I thought were in tune were not.  The Guild has never sounded better...

Anyway, It's been a great 2010, and I pray for an even better 2011.

I wish you and yours a most prosperous 2011, filled with love and good cheer.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

The 10 Million Commandments

The Federal Government is not God

I did a blog post on The Ten Commandments awhile back, and diving into a Jewish website on the subject, I learned that God gave us way more than just 10 commandments.

The Lord Almighty can give us all the commandments He sees fit; they are for our benefit.  The Feral Government, on the other hand, needs to knock it off.  We have too many laws, they are too wordy, and they are strangling us and choking off the kind of innovation that drives economic growth.

Such a hopeless tangle of impenetrable legal sludge makes a mockery of the very idea of law.  Such laws, that ordinary citizens cannot be expected to understand, leading them to routinely violate the law, do great damage to the Rule of Law. 
The current convention of law-as-instruction-manual suffers the idiocies of central planning, forcing everyone to go through the day with their noses in rule books instead of using their common sense. It also spawns such complexity that overhauling the vast accumulation of law would be hopeless - like trying to prune a jungle.  (Phillip K. Howard)
 Howard offers a solution:  Radical Simplification...
There is one common technique that has been used in successful legal overhauls, from Justinian's recodification in ancient times to the Napoleonic code that is the basis of modern European civil law to the uniform commercial code adopted in the United States in the 1950s. The technique is this: radical simplification.

Simplification of law has many virtues. It allows legislatures to pass measures of a general nature, setting goals and operating principles without trying to anticipate every regulatory situation. Think of the Constitution or the straightforward recommendations of the deficit commission. 
It will be interesting to see if the GOP can turn back this tide of legislative insanity that now washes over every last corner of our lives.  Those who decry a lack of bipartisanship need look no further than the burgeoning federal code, produced by statists in the Republican as well as Democratic party in equal measure.

WaPo - One Nation Under Too Many Laws

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Populist Convergence

We on the right are waking up to some traditional liberal issues, and that's a good thing

I have often maintained that if the populists on the right and left ever realized they share common enemies, the jig will be up up for the DC-Wall Street-Big Business axis of evil.

Goldwater-Reagan conservatives have always despised DC (especially when we were the minority).  Recently we have awakened to the predations of Wall Street and Crony Crapitalists disguised as free marketeers.

Now if the libs could only see how government "help" mocks the rule of law and engenders corruption, inequality and unemployment.  If left and right could link up against this axis of evil, We The People could topple the established order, put government back on firm constitutional footing and strip corporations and banks of their taxpayer-funded government protections.

Daniel DiSalvo sums up the tea party view...
The movement's unifying belief is that government and special interests have created an interlocking directorate, to the detriment of average Americans. Washington colludes with Wall Street while state and local governments kowtow to public sector unions. Thus tea party activists, who are neither Goldman Sachs bankers nor public employees, see the system as rigged against them.
The only difference between the tea party view and the liberal view is that the liberal refuses to lump Uncle Sam in with the banksters and the fatcats.  These hopelessly naive dupes still see big government as the counter to big banks and big biz, ignoring the fact that these three very big pigs all publicly and noisily wallow in the same trough.
The tea partiers' energy springs from a suspicion of those on the receiving end of government largesse. This suspicion is rooted in the quintessentially American norms of independence and work, and especially in the belief that people should provide for themselves and live within their means. Tea party patriots believe many - from pin-stripped executives to double-dipping firefighters - are scheming with the government to gain an unfair advantage, often at their expense. Therefore, handing over more money to government - no matter its source - is anathema.
At some point the liberals must realize that one cannot worship big government while also calling oneself a populist. 

Where Left and Right Agree
Among the many possible explanations for the tea party movement's rise, Schoen and Rasmussen suggest that increased economic inequality is the taproot of its fury. On this point, their analysis chimes with that of many Democrats. While the American economy has grown well in recent decades, the fruits of that growth have been unevenly distributed.
Conservatives are waking up to your issues, lefties.  Will you shake our hand, or will you bite it?

The Populist Wave - Daniel DiSalvo

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Who has done more damage to America? Washington DC or Wall Street?

I know, it's a tough question...

Bernie Madoff's son committed sideways a few weeks back, spurring John Robbins ask the question, Who's Done More Damage, Bernard Madoff or Alan Greenspan? 

I think mine is the more relevant question.

The anger at Madoff is misplaced. He's a piker compared to the federal government. After all, the multi-trillion dollar progressive ponzi schemes cooked up in DC dwarf Madoff’s mere 50 billion dollar one. And people voluntarily turned money over to Bernie.

The progressive ponzi scheme was crafted with confiscated money and the flim flam was kept afloat by Federal Reserve currency manipulation, stealing from workers and savers by a constant devaluation of the dollars we earn. This drove savers into the arms of Wall Street because we needed to invest in securities just to stay ahead of inflation.

Bernie Madoff just proves the old adage:  "If anybody besides the federal government tried that, they'd go to jail!"  Bernie's mistake was stealing without a government license. 

Monday, December 27, 2010

Big Business vs. Free Market Capitalism

In the spirit of Christmas*, I find a point of agreement with those in Left Blogistan...

I don't believe in squishy compromise just so my friends on the left and I can feel all warm and happy inside.  That's the problem I have with mushy middler moderates like David Frum.  Clarity over agreement, as Dennis Prager would say.

I do enjoy finding issues where we could probably agree, if only we would all drop our preconceived notions.  In the spirit of Christmas, I'd like to recommend Veroniqe de Rugy's excellent piece that bashes big business.

She explains why big business hates free market competition.
Think about it. Competition is good for consumers becauseit keeps prices low while increasing the quality and choices ofproducts and services. Yet competition is hard work forbusinesses. They have to fight for customers by innovating andevolving in ways that consumers demand.

This also explains the multi-billion dollar big business lobbying industry that keeps the DC beast so fat...
To avoid the gritty work of fighting it out in a freemarket, organized private interests [...] lobby the government for specialregulations, preferential tax treatment and laws that keep outcompetition. They lobby lawmakers to constrain the same freemarkets in which they originally achieved success.
Our government has spoiled big business rotten, with tax breaks, subsidies, and special exemptions, all at taxpayer expense.  It protects the "fearless capitalists" in such industries as sugar and ethanol and automobile manufacturing.  Any company that doesn't like some law can buy it's way out.

I sat one day long ago in the house of a Supreme Court Justice of a Latin American nation.  "We pass our bribes under the table," he freely offered.  "You guys in the United States conduct bribery via legislation."  

We can argue about the amount or regulations, but they need to apply equally to all.

* - We're still in Christmastime.  The 12 Days of Christmas are those between Christmas day and The Epiphany.

Veronique de Rugy

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Adios 111th Congress!

The Worst Congress Ever has finally, mercifully ground to a creaking, stinking, pork-laden halt. 

Unfortunately, we can't say the same of Harry and Nancy, although Harry comes back with a shrunken, threadbare majority, and Nan gets booted from her ceremonial Speaker's chambers by Republican John Boehner.

These past two years witnessed governmental abuses not seen since FDR's time.  FCC grabs, government health care grabs, governmental arrogance reaching even higher heights...  The only bright spot was The Revenge of the Voters this past November.  Unfortunately, it was mostly the more moderate Dems who bit the dust.  The strident statists will be back for more.
Obama admirer Ron Brownstein has a different take.  Here's his headline:

111th Congress was one for the Books

Yeah, comic books...  Or maybe a Steven King novel.

That headline is right up there with Vanity Fair's:

Obama Suffering because of His Achievements

Right...  Kinda like a convicted arsonist suffers because of his "achievements."  The American people are not so stupid.  Here's the voters' headline:

Opinion Of Congress Reaches All Time Low
(Princeton, NJ)  --  A newly released Gallup survey that asks Americans their opinion of Congress finds that opinion at an all time low.

Pollsters found only 13-percent of respondents approve of the way Congress is handling its duties.  (Reuters)
 Worst.  Congress.  Ever.

Kimberley Strassel - Congress's Monstrous Legal Legacy

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

* - Hector Garrido's "Jesus, Light of the World"

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!

We here at Casa Silverfiddle love "A Charlie Brown Christmas."  It is a beautiful and timeless classic.

Michael Cavna has written a most excellent story in the Washington Post about how this little cartoon came to be.  And how it came to be an iconic American Christmas tradition.

Charles Schultz keeps Christ in Christmas with Linus' famous speech quoting the birth narrative from The Bible, ending with "That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown."

Far from offending non-Christians, many love that scene for it's unabashed sincerity:
In writing about the "Peanuts" special in "Manhood for Amateurs," Chabon -- a self-described Jewish "liberal agnostic empiricist" -- waxed: "I still know that chapter and verse of the Gospel of Luke by heart, and no amount of subsequent disillusionment with the behavior of self-described Christians, or with the ongoing progressive commercialization that in 1965 had already broken Charlie Brown's heart, has robbed the central miracle of Christianity of its power to move me the way any truly great story can." (WaPo - Michael Cavna)

How about that music?

You can get that song and many more jazzy tunes by buying Vince Guaraldi's "A Charlie Brown Christmas."  It's full of beautiful Christmas music, some with singing, some just instrumental.  It makes great background music your your Christmas festivities.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Santa Looked a Lot Like Redneck Ron

Christmas is a time to thank God for his blessings and to remember friends and family

This picture of Mrs. Silverfiddle and Santa (who looks suspiciously like Redneck Ron), is a Christmastime favorite.

I don't remember Ron being in the room when Santa arrived, but then I've never seen him and Batman in the same location, either.

It has already been pointed out to me that Mrs. S. seems awfully happy, and we can's see Santa's right hand, so there's no need for further comment...

Here's some random good stuff...
"Neither the Bible, the Torah nor the Koran mentions Christmas trees. Yet some secular zealots try to ban Christmas trees on government property, based on the doctrine of "separation of church and state"-- a doctrine found nowhere in the Constitution."   (Thomas Sowell)

Governor Chris Christie has freed Brian Aitken! 

You'll recall Brian Aitken was the man railroaded by New Jersey on BS gun charges.  I joined thousands of other in writing to Governor Christie asking for clemency to correct this gross miscarriage of justice.  I also just got done writing the good governor again thanking him and wishing him and his family a very blessed Christmas.

Hopefully Mr. Aitken has learned his lesson about living in progressive states and will move back to Colorado where free people have not yet allowed the nanny state to wrench the guns from our hands.

 Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Dedicated to the Socialists at the FCC

The petty statists at the FCC have wrapped the FCC's bureaucratic tentacles around the internet.  This is just the beginning...

What is the problem this "solution" is supposed to solve?

Supposedly it will deal with "...bandwidth hogging sites such as Netflix."  Such language in a free-market with unlimited bandwith potential is not only ignorant, it is especially disturbing coming from a government bureaucrat.  Such interventions pervert the natural market incentives and spark inane arguments over who hogs more bandwidth and whether every child has a “right” to surf YouTube all day.

It's about power and control

What this FCC Beer Hall Putsch really does is establish a precedent.  It's about the Federal Government establishing primacy over the internet.  More regulations on content and speech control will follow.  Further on down the road is the government parceling out internet access and speech "rights."

How the internet works

Net Neutrality is a hard subject to grasp.  It is further befogged by those who discuss the internet as if it were a shared commons with constrained capacity. It is not. It is an agglomeration of competing operators, scalable infrastructure, ISPs and content providers.

Think of it as a network of toll roads (the backbone), that truckloads of products (content providers) use to deliver content to stores all over the US (ISP's).

We customers go to an ISP to get our YouTube and blogs, just like we go to Walmart to buy shotgun shells and DVDs.  ISPs and content providers pay the backbone operators for the bandwidth they use.  They then pass the cost on to us.  It's a great system, but some people just cannot stand the fact that market forces drive pricing.
"Usage-based pricing is a clear positive for cable, telecom, and wireless providers, but it also might be a concern for Netflix," said MF Global analyst Paul Gallant. "Depending on where the tiers were set, usage-based pricing on wire line broadband could end up deterring some people from dropping cable for over-the-top video."

A group of pointy-headed government bureaucrats cannot better determine what customers want than the free market can. Remove the regulations and let each ISP come up with their own pricing plan. That’s how cell phones work. It’s also how cable tv works. If I don't like Verizon I can switch over to Sprint, and I don't need a government nanny holding my hand.

Government should not be favoring one industry over another.  If internet demand grows, companies operating on the free market will build more capacity because they want to make more money off of us consumers. It’s a fair deal. We want more internet, and they risk their capital to build it, recouping their investment when they bring it on line and sell it to us. If it kills cable tv in the process, who cares?  It's a free marketplace--let the best technology win.

Our government does not understand the free market
An FCC official said in a statement that it would be a "cop on the beat" for "arbitrary, anti-consumer, or anti-competitive tiered pricing plans."
What a moron.  What company could make money with "arbitrary" or “anti-consumer” pricing?  Has this imbecilic statist never heard of Walmart, Amazon, or  They would go broke if they were stupid enough to do what this FCC bureaucrat suggests!  This is one more reason why government has no business intervening in the free market. These petty dictators don’t even understand basic economic fundamentals.

And "Anticompetitive?"  Look no further than the US government.  They routinely snuff competition in the energy market (ethanol and wind subsidies, import tariffs on foreign ethanol), automobile and transportation market (battery powered car and Amtrack subsidies), and now they are intervening in the competition between video stores, on-line video providers and cable tv.

This ruling retards the advance of consumer technology

Look at what a lack of government regulation has done to the music industry and cell phones.  We can now listen to whatever we want whenever we want, indy bands can build an on-line fan base without expensive promoters, and we can talk to anyone in the world while paying less for phone service than out parents and grandparents did.

One day, if government gets out of the way, we will all have fiber running to our house, and the possibilities are limitless.  Phone service, tv, movies, live streaming video teleconferencing for the average family.  John Nolte explains what the entertainment future would look like:
What I also see is a world in which absolutely EVERYTHING, every television show, movie, music video, what have you, is made available for mass consumption online. Because there’s no distribution costs beyond converting to the digital file necessary for streaming, we could see, for example, complete episodes of Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show made available. 

With very little upfront investment, anything and everything ever committed to film or video could find itself monetized again. And of course all of it would be available in the best sound and picture quality available.

And for the consumer? Well, that’s the best part. No more video collections clogging up the living room. For X-amount of dollars per month everything ever put on video will be one click away. For a monthly fee, sites like Netflix or Amazon will store your video collections for you.
Unfortunately, many Americans are more interested in professional ball sports or the Kardashians than they are in their freedoms.  Perhaps we could get their attention by giving them a glimpse of what their entertainment future could look like if the government would just get out of the way

Further Reading:
John Nolte - The Future of Home Video
Source-Report - The Internet Backbone
Politico  - Net Neutrality
Robert M McDowell - FCC's Threat to Internet Freedom
WaPo – FCC Market Meddling

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Don't Argue with Liberals or Crazy People

Why sensible people avoid discussing race...

I had Monday morning off and I wandered back into Left Blogistan.  I couldn't help myself...  Kinda like driving by an old girlfriend's house...

The mid-term elections must have hit the lefties hard; they're cannibalizing themselves over there.

I stumbled upon a thread that illustrates why sensible people don't discuss race. The thread is also a beautiful microcosm of liberalism itself.

A blogger named Sheria wrote a piece about how she's tired of the left beating up on President Obama.  She larded her sermon with standard liberal pieties and pontifications, and topped it off with spicy dashes of racial identity politics:
See, as a black person I'm so sick and tired of white liberals who have still enjoyed the privilege of being white trying to tell a black man how to navigate in a white world.
The ensuing thread is bursting with fetishistic adoration of the author, and everyone congratulating each other on the profundity of their comments...
Wow - this is why I'm such a fan of yours.

I love how you make me stop and think.

the president might be black but the captains of industry are white and they call the shots.
When Sheria speaks, I listen. She challenges me, not just to think, but also to feel. Intellectual knowledge is not enough until you feel it in your bones.
The author soaks it in...
I am truly honored by your "amen."

I greatly appreciate your thoughtful response to my thoughts on this matter
Now some guilty white Marxista-babble...
Perhaps fair-skinned ultra-critics should just quit focusing their ire on the POTUS and instead view the matter dialectically
It was all going swimmingly until someone in the hallelujah choir decided to fly over the cuckoo's nest. TAO, a committed leftist, is tired of all the race-based blather...
What is the truth? That progressives are racists? Or is the truth that progressives cannot criticize democrats?
Uh Oh!  Holy Frijoles, Batman!  Someone's escaped Camp Groupthink!
"Tao, I've really enjoyed my time at SZ and up until now, I've always the discussion to be stimulating and respectful. But you have crossed a line."
Oooooh!  At that point, TAO, a white man, should have retreated, tail between his legs, because in the liberal milieu populated with wise Latinas, a female minority is always morally superior.  Heedless, MAO charged back with further info to clarify his point.  He did his best to be conciliatory, but he refused to kneel before the altar of racial politics, so the author shut down the conversation: 
I asked you to not address me but you don't listen very well.
This preachy blogger goes out into a public forum, charges racism (or at the least white cluelessness and unworthiness to speak on the issue), plays the victim card, and then casts opprobrium on someone for not responding correctly.  He's escaped the dialectical mumbo-jumbo framework and is speaking logically, so he must be shut down.  That is liberalism in a nutshell.

This is why white "cowards" do not want to discuss race.
Nothing pisses me off more than in discussions about race, non-black folks always want to suggest that racism isn't really the issue.
She starts by referring to President Obama as a black man, then ends up decrying the "one drop rule," and stating that Obama is "no more black than he is white." See? She owns the issue. The rest of us are there as a privilege she grants to us, as long as we sit in the corner, mouth politically-correct platitudes and otherwise behave ourselves. This is not conversation; it is lecturing.

This is not a "black" thing. It is a "liberal" thing. They want a dialog but then obsessively control it by alternately stroking and praising, and baiting and shaming.  When attacked, they hide behind victimhood narratives.

TAO sums it up nicely:
How can we discuss race when you own it?
Liberals closed all avenues of productive conversation with tea partiers by branding us all racists. So pardon our delight if we enjoy a self-satisfied chortle as they now turn on one another.

The Splash Porn 

Monday, December 20, 2010

WikiLeakers are America-Hating Nihilists

The WikiLeakers and the Bathrobe Brigades now launching hack attacks from their parents' basements are not free speech heroes, they are leftwing collectivists lashing out at all they hate:  America, Capitalism, and of course, Sarah Palin.

Socialism Advances Behind a Screen of BS

The Palin attack is what revealed their true colors. What does she have to do with the free flow of information? How does stealing her and Todd's credit cards advance the cause of an open society?

Many of these hackers are society’s losers. They are unsuccessful, so they hate society. They lack the skills and self-discipline to hold down a job and contribute to society. Unloved, unwanted, unfamiliar with bathing, they have no stake in society, and therefore stand to lose nothing (but their public assistance checks) by bringing it all down, man!  If they really loved mankind, brotherhood and all that jazz, they'd be taking down gay-hating, free-speech snuffing jihadi websites instead of Mastercard's.
Anon_Ops describes itself as an "anonymous, decentralized movement which fights against censorship and copywrong." (Jake Tapper - Counterpunch)
They fight censorship by silencing others and shutting down websites. They produce nothing of value, so copyright laws are of no value to them.  This unique combination of self-contradiction and disrespect for the rights of others is the hallmark of the left.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


A Beautiful American Family

Demographics is destiny, and ours looks pretty good

Joel Kotkin has written another great piece entitled, Demography vs. Geography: Understanding the Political Future. I highly recommend you go read the whole thing. He analyzes trends as they relate to voting patterns. Minorities are increasing (bad for Republicans?), and liberal sinkholes like New York and California are losing congressional seats to successful conservative states like Texas and Utah.

One disappointment:  Professor Kotkin accepts liberal premises and language regarding minorities in America, and he off-handedly repeats them:
The Latinization of America, even if immigration slows, is now inevitable. Only 12 percent of the U.S. population in 2000, Hispanics will become almost 25 percent by 2050. As more Latinos integrate into society and become citizens, they are gradually forming a political force. Since 1990, the number of registered Latino voters swelled from 4.4 million to nearly 10 million today.

Anglos—60 percent of whom supported Republican congressional candidates in 2010—are beginning to experience an inexorable decline. In 1960, whites accounted for more than 90 percent of the electorate; today, that number is down to 75 percent. It will drop even more rapidly in the coming decades, with white non-Hispanics expected to account for barely half the nation’s population by 2050.
The burgeoning Hispanic (or Asian, or pick your minority) population is not the threat to "whites" that gleeful liberals keep shouting it is
In the creepy progressive lexicon, “minority” is anyone who is not 100% white.  If a white man marries a Cuban woman and they have three kids, they have just produced three Hispanics. By definition, they cannot produce “white” or “Anglo” kids. This eugenic-tinged standard is why we keep hearing that whites will be a minority one day.

It's useful to recall that 100 years ago, the ancestors of these "whites" were deplored as Irish, Italian and Slavic hordes that would demographically swamp America.  These people of yesterday, like Hispanics today, assimilated, thanks in large part to our common cultural roots of Western Christendom.  Our nation-scape is populated by families with Hispanic names like Robles, Nelson and Sandoval who speak no Spanish.  German is still America's largest ethnic group, yet you never hear it spoken.  These Americans may have artifacts from their family's distant past:  A German Bible, pictures, or faded letters in a now-incomprehensible language, but they are Americans.   

Hispanicizing America, or Americanizing Hispanics?

Minorities intermarry and assimilate.
Among all newlyweds in 2008, 9% of whites, 16% of blacks, 26% of Hispanics and 31% of Asians married someone whose race or ethnicity was different from their own.

White-Hispanic couples accounted for about four-in-ten (41%) of such new marriages; white-Asian couples made up 15%; and white-black couples made up 11%. (PEW 2010 Study)
Get that?  Whites are the least likely to marry outside their race.  Meanwhile, two times as many blacks, three times as many Hispanics, and almost four times as many Asians marry outside their racial/ethic group.  And when they do, it is overwhelmingly to whites.

So, we could just as easily talk about the Anglicization of Hispanics

Racial discussions like this are disturbing in so many ways.  Sorting and analyzing and applying progressive purity tests are horrible relics best resigned to the Woodrow Wilson era.  Another condescension is to assume that Hispanics form a politically and culturally homogeneous block. They do not. Voting trends prove it, and anyone who knows some Mexicans as well as some Puerto Ricans and South Americans can tell you that when you meet one Hispanic you definitely have not met them all.

All this talk is making me hungry for tacos and egg rolls.  America will not be overrun by foreigners.  The data shows that we will end up looking more and more like Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and his family, and that's a pretty good future to look forward to.

Joel Kotkin – Demography vs Geography
PEW – Marrying Out
Linda Chavez – Census Hysteria

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Happy Holidays!

A little Christmas-themed e-mail humor...

December 1st

I'm happy to inform you that the company Christmas Party will take place on December 23rd at Idaho Chuck's Steakhouse. There will be lots of spiked eggnog and a small band playing traditional carols. Feel free to sing along. And don't be surprised if our Director shows up dressed as Santa Claus to light the Christmas tree! Exchange of gifts among employees can be done at that time; however, no gift should be over $10. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director

December 2nd

In no way was yesterday's memo intended to exclude our Jewish employees. We recognize that Hanukkah is an important holiday that often coincides with Christmas (though unfortunately not this year). However, from now on we're calling it our "Holiday Party." The same policy applies to employees who are celebrating Kwanzaa at this time. There will be no Christmas tree and no Christmas carols sung. Happy Holidays to you and your family.

Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director

December 3rd

Regarding the anonymous note I received from a member of Alcoholics Anonymous requesting a non-drinking table, I'm happy to accommodate this request, but, don't forget, if I put a sign on the table that reads, "AA Only," you won't be anonymous anymore. In addition, forget about the gifts exchange-- no gifts will be allowed since the union members feel that $10 is too much money.

Patty Lewis, Human Researchers Director

December 7th

I've arranged for members of Overeaters Anonymous to sit farthest from the dessert buffet and pregnant women closest to the restrooms. Gays are allowed to sit with each other. Lesbians do not have to sit with the gay men; each will have their table. Yes, there will be a flower arrangement for the gay men's table.

Happy now?

Patty Lewis, Human Racehorses Director

December 9th

People, people -- nothing sinister was intended by wanting our Director to play Santa Claus! Even if the anagram of "Santa" does happen to be Satan," there is no evil connotation to our own "little man in a red suit."

Patty Lewis, Human Ratraces

December 10th

Vegetarians -- I've had it with you people!! We're going to hold this party
at Idaho Chuck's whether you like it or not, you can just sit at the table farthest from the "grill of death," as you put it, and you'll get salad bar only, including hydroponic tomatoes. But, you know, tomatoes have feelings, too. They scream when you slice them. I've heard them scream. I'm hearing them right now... Ha! I hope you all have a rotten holiday! Drive drunk and die, you hear me?

The Witch from Hell

December 14th

I'm sure I speak for all of us in wishing Patty Lewis a speedy recovery from
her stress-related illness. I'll continue to forward your cards to her at the sanitarium. In the meantime, management has decided to cancel our Holiday Party and give everyone the afternoon of the 23rd off with full pay.

Terri Bishop, Acting Human Resources Director

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Murdered Tree

Europeans have been vandalizing Christianity for centuries, but they cry crocodile tears over a thorn tree supposedly planted by Joseph of Arimathea, and it’s not even the original tree.

This is a druidistic mourning for a murdered tree, and has nothing to do with Christianity.

I’m not making light of this. It was a cool looking tree and it was a distinguishing feature of the Glastonbury landscape. The perpetrators should be caught and charged with vandalism, at the least.

Also, I hate to see the wanton destruction of anything, especially a living thing. I admit to being a tree-hugger. I love them. The pines in our front yard are a flashpoint between Mrs. Silverfiddle and me. She wants me to hack them down and I can’t bear the thought of it (even though I’m the one, at her insistence, who has to decorate them as Christmas trees each December.)

The destruction of that tree was mindless, nihilistic vandalism, spawned by generations of liberal European nothingism. Some drug-addled punk did it to outrage people. Not by striking at the root of Christianity in Scotland, but by removing a beloved landmark.

Does anyone on the old sod even have a sense enough of the sacred to conceive of such a revenge against those stupid, superstitious Christians? I doubt it. Raising the price of cigarettes would elicit more outrage than any supposed insult to Christianity.

David Warren – Convert our Pagan Savages

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Gangs of Denver

How a working man in Denver lost his truck and his tools...

Mechanic Robin McAnally was driving to a work site in his GMC and needed a place to turn his rig around, so he went down a side street and as he was turning around, a woman opened the passenger side door, hopped in and offered him a Lewinski.  He turned her down, she got out and he headed back up the street.  Before he could get back onto the main thoroughfare, armed men came out of nowhere and forced him to stop and get out of his truck.

They took him to a warehouse where he realized he was not the only victim.  He was surrounded by others who had met a similar fate.  The armed men were taunting the victims as they made each man pose in front of his vehicle before it was towed away.

Criminal activity?  Depends. 
I just described a “reverse john” sting staged by the Denver Police Department.  Robin was found not guilty by a jury of his peers after only 15 minutes deliberation.

Now exonerated, Robin went down to the Denver impound yard to retrieve his truck, only to be subjected to further abuse by the City of Denver.  They informed him he must still pay $5,000 to get it back, even though he has done nothing wrong. 

Activists scream that Denver's new stricter impoundment law violates the rights of illegal immigrants since they often drive with no license, no plates, no insurance, no right to be in the country...  But not one of them stands up for a wrongly-charged man who needs his truck and tools to earn his bread.

It's about raising money, not stopping crime
Illegal immigrants rob and kill, gangs run rampant, even killing a Denver Bronco football player, but the Denver Police has nothing better to do than entrap innocent citizens trying to get through a work day?  And the city insists on collecting all fees even when they wrongly impounded the vehicle?  This is state-sponsored theft. 

These good little liberal sheeple deserve a progressive pat on the head from their statist overlords!

Local talk show host Peter Boyles featured this story on his morning show, and boy did the progressive statists come out of the woodwork to criticize this man and stand up for a tyrannical government:

One person said it served him right driving through that bad neighborhood and he should learn a lesson from it.

Many noted that the man said his truck wasn’t worth the $5,000 impound fee so he should just forget it.

Half the people in Colorado live in Denver, and the other half of us hope to hell they stay there.  Denver is now overrun with little liberal democrat minions.  All that party is left with are effete metrosexuals and shiftless welfare bums who don’t have the worries a working person does.  Tools and a vehicle are a working person’s lifeblood.  Take them away and you lose the ability to put food on the table.  That truck’s blue book value is nothing, but it would take thousands to replace it.  Liberals are out of touch with normal America.

Liberalism Destroys All It Touches

I lived in Denver when I was a young man.  It was a nice place, full of working class people, college students and downtown yuppies.  Now it’s a fetid sewer, homeless bums wandering downtown, gangs shooting it out nightly, illegal immigrants taking over whole neighborhoods and killing citizens with drunk driving and outright murder.

Liberalism twists a culture, causing a society to eat itself from the inside out like ants in a rotten log.

Denver can’t stop gangs from running rampant, and it has no will to stop illegal immigrants from bleeding the city dry, but it can sure go after law-abiding taxpayers to fund it all!  This dysfunction is not just confined to this once-great city.  This is a cancer that is progressively rotting the soul of this nation.
The heavy-handed state knows how to treat innocent citizens like criminals, but cannot stop the real criminals.  Over 3,000 people lost their lives on 9/11, but nobody lost their job.  Government officials who strip search us at airports can’t stop someone with a security clearance from harvesting a treasure trove of secrets and releasing them to the public.  Those charged with protecting us have failed, so they’ve turned on us, treating us all as criminals in the process.

Progressives dream of a Utopia America, while we realists dream of simple competence where lawbreakers are rolled up and law-abiding citizens are left to their liberties.

KDVR - Denver Scams

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Anarchy: It’s not just for the downtrodden!

Life imitates art

A Multi-bajillionaire Pink Floyd scion desecrated a British war memorial as part of the selfish rants going on in Britain over the government’s austerity programs. This stunt could only have been improved upon by a live soundtrack of uber rich old dude Steven Tyler belting out “Eat the Rich.”

During the most recent—on the day of the tuition bill vote—they drew graffiti on a statue of Churchill and urinated on its base, damaged the Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square, and then attacked the royal car. One protester—the adopted son of Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour, as it happens—climbed the Cenotaph, London's central war memorial (inscribed "To the Glorious Dead"), swung from a flag that hangs from the top, and then tried to start a bonfire outside a courthouse for good measure. (Slate – Anne Applebaum)

The anarcho-trustfunders can retreat to their posh estates after a day of sticking it to the man, but the poor remain trapped among the rubble they’ve created. Ask the people of South Central LA.

What to do about the poor?
“Give them a job!” I shout at the rich liberal hand wringers. Education too expensive? Then open your wallets and start handing out money, you liberal millionaires! These faux generosi then protest that its government’s job. Oh yeah? Says who?  I don't remember reading that in the US Constitution.  And by the way, where does this omnipotent government get its money? Uncle Obama’s stash is emptier than Al Gore’s lock box.

The rich will then protest that they don’t have enough to hand out to everyone that needs it. They sigh dejectedly as they climb into the Lambourghini, shrugging their shoulders at the unfairness of it all as their tail lights fade in the distance.

Meanwhile, the Bill Gates’s of the world start with a small amount of money and a good idea, add a lot of hard work, and end up providing jobs for millions who want to work and take care of themselves.  Many become millionaires themselves.  Gates and people like him are now funding whole schools and food and medicine programs for entire countries.

Capitalism works. Statism doesn't.  Just ask the British protesters.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Liberalism is Intellectually Bankrupt

American liberalism may not be dead, but it has become a pathetic, laughable shell of its former self.  Responsible adults such as Hubert Humphrey, Barbara Jordan, and Scoop Jackson have left the building.  The movement is now chock full of Al Harptons bullhorn brigades, sputtering red-faced ranters like Ed Schultz and sleazo nutballs such as Alan Grayson.

Emmett Tyrell delivers liberalism's eulogy...
As a political movement liberalism is dead. They do not have the numbers. They do not have the policies. They have 23 seats in the Senate to defend in 2012 (against the Republicans' 10) and Republican control of state houses and legislatures will give them even more seats in the future. Liberalism R.I.P.
But more importantly, Tyrell points out that unlike conservatives, liberals have no intellectual source to draw from:
Conservatives have had Edmund Burke and the Founding Fathers as their cynosures. Sometimes they have provided discipline; sometimes conservatives have followed their own star.
The problem for liberals is they have been denied a cynosure. Some had looked to the British Fabian Socialists and some to Karl Marx, but since the late 1940s liberals became coy about their intellectual mentors.
We have liberty lovers Hayek and the founding fathers.  Liberals have racists Margaret Sanger and Woodrow Wilson.  It's no contest. 

R. Emmett Tyrell - Liberalism's Autopsy

Monday, December 13, 2010

How to Cut the Budget

Cutting the federal budget is easy.  I saw it done in the 1990's.  The Defense Department took 30% cuts in manpower and money over the decade and came out a leaner, meaner fighting force.  The rest of the government needs the same treatment.

How do we cut the budget? Simple. 10% across the board cut. For every federal government department. Make it 15 or 20 if need be. Millions of American families have done this in the past few years, so if Obama and congress need advice, there are literally millions of citizens who could give them the push. 

How the DoD Managed 33% Cuts in the 1990's

I was in the Air Force during the Clinton 90’s. We thought it would be the end of the world when he was elected. President Clinton reaped the peace dividend and balanced the budget on our backs. Defense was the only federal program to take real budget cuts and real manpower cuts.

The cutting started under Bush Senior in 1991, and the budget never got back to 1990 real-dollar levels until the year 2000. While overall federal spending grew by 33%, the DoD budget flatlined. Total active duty manpower went from 2 million to just over 1.3 million in that same time period, a 35% cut.

President Clinton Improved our Armed Forces

I'm not bashing President Clinton.  He just reminded us the other day in the White House press room what a real president looks like. I lay out the facts to tell you that it was not the end of the world.

President Clinton's cuts forced us to slash the fat and end wasteful practices. We came out the other side a leaner, meaner fighting force. If the DoD can do it, so can every other federal bureaucracy, including Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Hand wringing over what to cut?  Remember those wasteful inefficiencies everyone keeps talking about? Slash each department's budget and those bureaucrats will be forced to find those inefficiencies and terminate them.

Let States Declare Bankruptcy

While we're at it, congress must pass a law allowing states to declare bankruptcy. That puts irresponsible states like California, New York and Illinois on notice that Uncle Sam will not shake down the taxpayer or borrow more from China to pay for their spending binges. Big Mommy and Daddy government cannot get the bills payed off just to see their reckless children return home to bleed them dry.

Walter Russell Meade – Blue State Armageddon
Reason – How to Balance the Budget
Reason – Leaner Leviathan

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Progressives Need Victims

I'm not ready to vote for Sara Palin for president, but I love how she unhinges the left.  Sarah is successful, accomplished, independent, has a beautiful family and a hunky husband who doesn't mind playing Mr. Mom.  Everything liberals hate in a woman, explains the smart and sexy S.E Cupp...
nothing raises the ire of cynical liberals more than a happy-go-lucky, totally unburdened, freethinking and self-assured conservative woman who has everything she wants and then some. And without anyone's help.
Liberalism, after all, needs to imagine an unhappy populace. Passing sweeping entitlement programs and convincing voters that big government is the answer only works if people are frustrated with their stations in life. (NY Daily News - S.E. Cupp)

Progressives need people on the welfare rolls, people without health insurance, hungry people, marginalized people speaking foreign languages, bitter and angry resentful people, homeless people and people in substandard housing.

A self-sufficient people have no need for progressive government busybodies.  Imagine if everyone followed in Sara Palin's footsteps.  Progressives would be out of business.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A Real Woman

A real woman is a man's best friend.  She will never stand him up and never let him down. She will reassure him when he feels insecure and comfort him after a bad day.

She will inspire him to do things he never thought he could do; to live without fear and forget regret. She will enable him to express his deepest emotions and give in to his most intimate desires.

She will make sure he always feels as though he's the most handsome man in the room and will enable him to be the most confident, sexy, seductive, and invincible. . .

No wait... I'm thinking of beer.  Never mind.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Green Energy: Starving People to Feed Cars

Reverend Al Gore, Church of Global Warming, is scaling back the flim flam operation.
"It is not a good policy to have these massive subsidies for (U.S.) first generation ethanol," said Gore, speaking at a green energy business conference in Athens sponsored by Marfin Popular Bank.

"First generation ethanol I think was a mistake. The energy conversion ratios are at best very small.

"It's hard once such a programme is put in place to deal with the lobbies that keep it going." (Reuters)
He even admitting what I’ve been saying all along, that this wasteful government ethanol subsidy program is also immoral: It starves people to feed cars…
Gore said a range of factors had contributed to that food price crisis, including drought in Australia, but said there was no doubt biofuels have an effect.

"The size, the percentage of corn particularly, which is now being (used for) first generation ethanol definitely has an impact on food prices.

"The competition with food prices is real." (Reuters)
So, can these wasteful, immoral subsidies be ended?

Dennis Byrne is skeptical...

the EPA issued its so-called E15 rule, which raised to 15 percent the allowable blend of ethanol for cars and certain trucks built since 2007. In that, the EPA ignored studies pointing to the harmful effects that 50 percent increase will have on cars, including the agency's own conclusion that it would damage the catalytic converters of tens of millions of cars now on the road.

Wait, that's only the start. The ethanol industry also receives a tax credit amounting to 45 cents a gallon and is aided by a tariff on sugar-cane ethanol valued at 54 cents. In addition, the 2007 energy act mandates the use of renewable fuels, including ethanol: 10.5 billion gallons in 2009, 14 billion in 2011 and 36 billion by 2022.

This is extraordinary. And insane. Here, the government creates a fake market for ethanol, then subsidizes the market, and then protects the market against foreign competition. (RCP – Dennis Byrne)
Ed Morrissey reports that a bipartisan group of senators has signed a letter calling for the end of subsidies that prop up this rotten program. He and other also note pessimistically that there is also broad bipartisan support

It’s only a few billion, critics cry, just as some on the right throw rocks at the president’s pay raise freeze for federal workers. But as Everett Dirkson was purported to have said, “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you're talking real money.”

Other Links:
American Spectator – Gores Admission
Denver Post – Tide Ebbing For Ethanol?

Thursday, December 9, 2010


America's Wounds are Self-Inflicted

Cosmopolitan progressive and Chinese Politburo fanboy Tom Friedman has written a column I agree with, and that doesn’t happen too often.  I recommend you go read the whole thing

His column is a piece of undistilled common sense, and that is so uncommon from the New York Times crowd.  Here are his main points:

Wikileaks would never have happened if we has controlled our information.  An American with a security clearance and no loyalty to his country handed it all over.

We handed China the knife that is now at our throat.  International financiers could not bend us over if we had not irresponsibly gorged ourselves on imported goods financed by easy money.
We are a slave to the Middle East.  We could tell the whole rotten stinking toilet known as the middle east to go to hell if we didn’t need their oil. 

When you put yourself in hock to others, you lose control of your agenda and your destiny.  Ultimately, you will lose your soul.

Consequences Suck
Not so much untended consequences as just plain consequences.  Much is being made from the right about Obama’s lack of power and leverage in the world.  Well, that was a long time coming.  We are over-leveraged andover-extended.  There are too many variables in the equation for us to think we can control it all.

Far from criticizing Hillary's State Department, I think the WikiLeak cables reveal a diplomatic corps doing its damnedest  to protect our interests while striving to deal honestly with other governments.

There are Solutions
A good libertarian argument for quitting the middle east goes like this:  Who cares if the current nasty regimes that fund terrorists are replaced by nastier ones who actually are the terrorists?  They still mustsell the oil on the global market.  They can’t withhold it and they can’t set an artificially high price, because they are not the only game in town.  Plus, if worse came to worst, we can pump our own and make up much of the difference.

A similar libertarian argument can be made for quitting Pakistan and Afghanistan.  We oppose centrally-planned statist solutions here at home, so why support them in foreign lands where our “solutions” clash with localculture?  We can’t continue running around stamping out every fire.  Let Russia and China grapple with their troublesome neighbors, while we sit back and marshal our strength.
The successful martial artist will tell you that it's not about conquering others, it's about conquering oneself.  That is the most formidable opponent.  The founders knew this to be true.  We Americans must learn it anew.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

WikiLeaks, Whistleblowers, and Watchdogs

Source:  The Unapologetic Geek
Call it Treason

Every 6 months or so, the New York Times reminds us why patriotic Americans hate it so. Critics readily call this toilet paper of record what it is:  Treasonous.

Trenchant Canadian thinker and moralist David Warren supplies the oh so apropos words…
“Does the state, under whose protection we live, have any claim on our loyalty, whatever? Do the men and women who have died, and generations that have made sacrifices for our very existence, have any moral claim upon us? Or are they simply disposable extensions of our own ego? (David Warren - Wikid )

It’s a brilliant question with only one obvious answer: Yes, of course we do!

We can criticize President Obama, the military or the TSA, but in the end, we still owe the president and the government our loyalty. I think the TSA is a poorly conceived organization, but if I ever found myself in possession of embarrassing but secret TSA information, there’s no way in hell I would release it to anyone.

It is craven stupidity to cooperate with forces who want to undermine your nation. The New York Times staff and their fellow travelers are the spoiled rotten teens who scream curses at mommy and daddy while driving off in the new Mercedes those hated parents just bought them.

Our government is the guardian of our classical liberal ideals. That it sometimes does not live up to them is no surprise. Anyway, there is no damning information in this latest tranche.  We come out looking like the responsible adults, while our friendemies look craven, venal and downright stupid.

This is not whistleblowing
Whistleblowing is revealing a US Army plot to harvest the organs of innocent Afghanis.  Exposing a George Bush-Dick Cheney plot to continue controlling the US and the world from a secret bunker deep under the city of Dallas would be whistleblowing.  The revelation that Singapore's prime minister called North Korean dictator Kim Jong Ill "a flabby chap," is hardly earthshattering.  Damned funny, but hardly worth all the fuss and bother.

We need the press to be the honest broker and the detective who ferrets out government and international agency wrongdoing.  I want politicians and bureaucrats looking over their shoulders, and when they do wrong, I want it exposed.  Problem is, The New York Times jumps all over a chance to embarrass the United States and reveal critical secrets, but it studiously ignored the global warming flim flammery revealed in the East Anglia e-mails because they were "stolen."  A watchdog that plays favorites is no watchdog at all.

The WikiRapist is a stated enemy of the US and should be treated as such
In 2006, Mr. Assange wrote a pair of essays, "State and Terrorist Conspiracies" and "Conspiracy as Governance." He sees the U.S. as an authoritarian conspiracy.

His central plan is that leaks will restrict the flow of information among officials—"conspirators" in his view—making government less effective. Or, as Mr. Assange puts it, "We can marginalize a conspiracy's ability to act by decreasing total conspiratorial power until it is no longer able to understand, and hence respond effectively to its environment. . . . An authoritarian conspiracy that cannot think efficiently cannot act to preserve itself."  (Gordon Crovitz – Information Anarchist)

One step down from Assange’s acts of "look at me" hatred and the NY Times’ treason, is the giddy idiocy of people who call themselves loyal Americans cheering all this on.

If you believe diplomacy and international cooperation are vital means of avoiding war and aiding the oppressed, then you must agree that this smirking pseudo-intellectual prima donna has blood on his hands.  His actions have chilled diplomatic candor.  Assange is not just an enemy of the United States, he is an enemy of mankind.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Day That Will Live in Infamy

Frenchman crying - June, 1940 
He cries as he watches the German soldiers marching down the Champs Elysees. The glory of France has been ground underfoot by Hitler's goose-stepping legions. In a matter of weeks, the vaunted French army, the Maginot Line, and all of France's pride has been destroyed by the Nazi blitzkrieg. He is a middle-aged man, maybe in his mid Forties. Look at his tears, his tie, his nice suit. He survived World War One and looks like he has since prospered. And now? The night has fallen over France, and soon, all of Europe. He cries for the Twentieth Century. 
(Picture and caption:

Lessons from a Museum
My wife and I took our kids to a museum here in town on December 7th a few years ago. While there, we had the good fortune to meet a WW II Navy veteran who had survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. We also encountered the famous WW II picture of the Frenchman crying. These two contrasting encounters taught my family a lesson that I want to share with you.

At the beginning of our tour I spied the aging sailor wearing a veteran’s garrison cap emblazoned with the words “Pearl Harbor Survivor.” I crouched down and quickly tutored my children on Pearl Harbor, WW II, and the man’s significance upon that historical landscape. Fortunately, the kids grasped the meaning of the moment and we approached the gentleman. A mellow, unassuming man, he treated our questions with kindness and received our thanks with humility.

At the end of our museum tour we came face to face with the elderly veteran’s polar opposite: the picture of the Frenchman crying. Many of my fellow Americans would probably enjoy hearty anti-French belly laughs at this picture. But I feel only a profound, heart-tugging sadness when I gaze upon that pitiable countenance. This is the face of a people who lacked the will to defend their freedom. This is the face that traded war and its attendant violence for subjugation and humiliation.

I felt just as compelled to introduce my children to the Frenchman crying as I did to the aging hero. I directed my kids’ attention to the picture and asked them to describe it. “He’s crying,” and “That man is sad,” were the answers I got. They could see his distress and wanted to know what had caused it.

I told them this is how you end up when you're unable or unwilling to fight for your freedom. I told them that if they were not prepared to risk their lives for their country, they had better be prepared to stand on the street crying as the conquerors march by. I insisted they study the picture some more, observe the pain on the man’s face, notice the tears running down his cheeks. “Remember that face,” I told them, “and may you never experience his misfortune.”

Reliance on Maginot Lines and international organizations provides a sense of security--up until the inevitable failure of such contrivances. Then, alas, it is back to blood and steel. Sadly, we are all too human after all.

The veteran and the Frenchman stand in stark contrast. Taken together, they remind us of two unyielding truths: The opposite of war is not necessarily peace, and freedom is never free.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Don't Ask. Do Tell!

Gays in the Military?  Support troops say yes, combat troops say no

The big headline out of the Gays in the Military survey is that 75% of active duty troops see no problem with it.  Left largely unreported is that the 25% opposition is concentrated in the combat arms.

The vast majority of our military is logistics and support "tail," while only a small percentage make up the "teeth" that do the actual fighting and other field activities outside the safe confines of the garrison.  Combat troops live cheek by jowl in rough conditions where trust in one another is critical.  Support troops have it much better and enjoy the luxury of retreating to semi-private living quarters and latrine and shower facilities.

This will have to be resolved before proceeding.  You can call the combat troops bigots if you want, but they are the ones doing the fighting.  Doing this the wrong way could have grave consequences.

An encouraging statistic out of the report shows that most gays now serving simply want to get on with soldiering and have no interest in "coming out" once the ban is lifted.

President Clinton provided a way for gays to serve, but that wasn't good enough for the activists.  The vast majority of those kicked out under Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) were self-identified.  For some it was an "I'm here and I'm queer!" statement, while many others who didn't like the military life used it as a get out of jail free card.

Activists that join to act out will quickly find themselves bounced from the ranks.  Military life is arduous, especially the first few years.  Trying to maintain a separate agenda, even while not breaking regulations, will simply interfere with the training one must accomplish.  Spend too much time on your activist agenda, and you will fail your training and find yourself a civilian again.

DADT Undermines the Code of Honor
For those of us who place military effectiveness first in this discussion, one aspect of DADT is disturbing:  We are asking gay people to live a lie.  The military bans gay sex, but you can break that law as long as you don't tell anybody.  This is very un-military.  The US Armed Forces is an institution built upon a foundation of trust and honor, and DADT undermines that.

My Simple Solution
Decriminalize homosexual acts.  Strike from the UCMJ those article and clauses that outlaw homosexuality.   This confers no special status on gays, but no longer subjects them to witch hunts either.  Current rules would prevent bigots from discriminating against them, as well punish the activist gays bent on acting out.   Everyone must be treated equally and behavior codes are much stricter in the military. 

The Chaplain Corps and conservative Christians are dead set against repeal, but decriminalizing homosexual acts would put gays in the same category as another class of sinner currently serving, those having sex outside of marriage.  The military is full of them.  And in Christian theology, fornication is no better or worse than sodomy.

If Christians can tolerate fornicators in the ranks, why not sodomites?

WaPo - Gays in the Military Report

WaPo - Right Move, Wrong Time


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Man-Made Rights are No Rights at All

I took a brief swing through Left Blogistan the other day. I don't get over there too much anymore; just not enough hours in the day.

As usual, the lack of diversity in blog post topics really stood out. The buzz seemed to be about how government requires people working together for the collective or else all will descend into anarchy, selfish individualism, chaos...  As if we're not on the cusp of that now, two years into the Era of Obama. Such banalities pass for good blogging over there.

Some alpha liberal like Rachel Madow or some guy at HuffPo normal people have never heard of probably wrote a big blather piece on "social contracts" or some such, and everybody else had to comply with the daily marching orders. Lefties are such lemmings.

A liberal blogger said a very ignorant thing:
There is no such thing as "God given rights" because if we returned to the original state of nature, or that which was "God given" we would find ourselves bound only by our own personal power, our conscience, and or by forces superior to our own.

The rights that we enjoy today are man made rights; and as such are not "natural rights" nor are they permanently fixed.
The first sentence is incoherent, and the second absurd. They cannot be defended. The first sentence is either nonsensical or it contradicts the author's thesis. It is so poorly written that a sane person cannot tell what was intended.

The second sentence is absurd. We get our rights from man? OK. So if "man" decides to enslave all bloggers then it's OK? If man grants rights, he can take them away. This explains liberals' infatuation with strongmen like Mussolini, as well as uber-liberal Tom Friedman's current love affair with the Red Chinese politburo.  It also explains how 20th century statism was able to kill over 100 million people.

The writer didn’t even cite a philosophical work to defend his unsubstantiated claim. I know why. No credible thinker could defend this. Even if there were someone loony enough to try to defend such a preposterous supposition, it would be written in incomprehensible Cornell West psychobabble.

American liberalism is a hopeless, self-contradictory tangle, an intellectual cul-de-sac.  In contrast, our Natural Rights, as enunciated by our founding fathers, are axiomatic:
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." (Declaration of Independence)
Yes, we have a social contract called the US Constitution, but our rights do not emanate from that document.  They are natural rights that preexist and supersede man-made institutions. 

Natural Law -- Our Foundation

Natural Law is a philosophy, a theory.  As such, it is open to debate and question, as is Christianity and global warming.  Natural Law is the philosophical foundation of our constitutional republic, and today it stands in stark contrast to the central economic planning and social tinkering of progressives.

Jonathan  Dolhenty explains:
What do we mean by "natural law"? In its simplest definition, natural law is that "unwritten law" that is more or less the same for everyone everywhere. 

To be more exact, natural law is the concept of a body of moral principles that is common to all humankind and, as generally posited, is recognizable by human reason alone. Natural law is therefore distinguished from -- and provides a standard for -- positive law, the formal legal enactments of a particular society.

To sum it up, then, we can say that the natural law:
  • is not made by human beings;
  • is based on the structure of reality itself;
  • is the same for all human beings and at all times;
  • is an unchanging rule or pattern which is there for human beings to discover;
  • is the naturally knowable moral law
  • is a means by which human beings can rationally guide themselves to their good.  
(Source:  Radical Academy)

The Rights of the Colonists, written in 1772, shows how natural rights were understood at our nation's founding.  It is a short document that describes man's natural rights and his entering into voluntary civil society with others for the mutual protection of those rights.  It logically follows that such a society's positive  laws ...

   "should conform as far as possible, to the Law of natural reason and equity." 

Simply put, a society needs man-made laws to protect the natural laws of those who voluntarily participate.
"The natural liberty of Men by entering into society is abridg’d or restrained so far only as is necessary for the Great end of Society the best good of the whole"
It's a balancing act, and progressives have turned us upside-down.  To get a better understanding, take five minutes to read the document at Vindicating the Founding Fathers.

Further Reading:
Locke's Second Treatise Of Civil Government

The Principles of Natural and Politic Law