Monday, January 31, 2011

War on Cops

On 14 January, eleven police officers were shot in five states in a 24-hour period. 14 officers in all were killed in January of 2011.  In 2010, 162 officers were killed in the line of duty, up from 117 in 2009.

The lunatics are running the asylum. We celebrate a gansta culture, laugh at lawlessness, and worship thugs. Then scratch our heads when stuff like this happens.

Like soldiers, cops don’t need our sympathy, they need our support. 
When some criminal bum files a lawsuit because somebody put his cuffs on too tight, we need to step up and defend our police department, and even encourage legislators to pass laws narrowing the window of opportunity for such legal frivolities.  

A YouTube Viral Video Does Not Tell The Whole Story
I hate when some youtube goes viral because an “innocent protestor” was slammed to the ground by policemen or cuffed and hauled off. Here’s the bottom line folks: a police officer is the law on the scene and must administer justice as the situation warrants. He doesn’t know who you are and all the personalities involved. He just rolled up on the situation and now has to sort it out. Shut your mouth, cooperate and if you’re not a perp you’re on your way. Shooting off your mouth is not going to keep you out of trouble, it just make the situation harder to sort out.

We view these youtubes, like the guy with some sign at an event up in Alaska last year, with full knowledge that the person was harmless. The cops on the scene don’t know that. Anyone could have a knife, a gun or could just be hopped up on meth or some other drug that makes them violent, powerful, and impervious to pain compliance techniques. The police are charged with protecting the public, but they also must protect themselves as much as possible. And yes, they make mistakes, but people acting stupidly and refusing to listen turns a small mistake into a much bigger one.

Cases like Amadou Diallo also go viral. Intellectual luminaries like Bruce Springsteen ask why the cops had to shoot him 41 times? If you believe a perp to be imminently and lethally dangerous, you shoot him, and you keep shooting until he goes down. It’s not like in the movies where you shoot once, or pull a Lone Ranger and shoot the gun out of the perp’s hand. You don’t fire a warning shot and see what happens. If there’s a lethal danger, you put it down.
We now know Diallo was not armed, but the officers on that dark night did not. The officer who yelled “Gun!” made a mistake. That mistake would not have happened had Diallo followed orders and simply raised his hands. The policemen would have frisked him, questioned him and he’s on his way. He could have lived to file whatever complaint or lawsuit he felt was necessary if he thought his rights were violated.

It’s a sad fact of life for people in bad neighborhoods that they may sometimes be stopped. It’s even sadder for the police officer killed in the line of duty and the grieving loved ones left behind.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Brotherhood of the Traveling (and burning) Pants, Part II

What a difference a year makes

Since the "underwear bomber" (or should I say the TSA useful idiot?) tried to roast his huevos rancheros, we've seen the most outrageous infringements of the 4th Amendment ever upon American Citizens. Nude ray scanners. Breasts exposed and fondled in public to laughing TSA thugs. Genitals fondled and women even claiming to have been penetrated. A former Governor suing due to the same.

Not one terrorist arrested in all this time by the TSA - yet more than a few American Citizens blacklisted and/or arrested for standing up for their rights.

Raison d'etre? The damned underwear bomber!

Well, it turns out that two attorneys were on the same flight as this "bomber" - and they firmly believe that the U.S. Government allowed this scum on the plane with the faux bomb. A must see:

YouTube: Kurt Haskell's Damning Testimony

First off, they mention a well-dressed individual in Amsterdam helping the bomber on the flight - without a passport - and this individual was an American. The explosive was most likely a road flare ground up and inserted into the Nigerian's underwear.

Have we forgotten about the suspicious passenger who filmed throughout the entire flight - that stood and continued to film when the flames errupted? Where is that film? In the age of YouTube you would imagine it would be uploaded in a New York Minute. Unless it was taken by some federal operative or confiscated by one.

Follow the Money

In the months following the attempted bombing, lucrative x-ray imagers were installed throughout the United States - hawked by none other than former DHS chief Michael Chertoff. This stinks to high heaven - these tyrants not only strip us of our privacy in the name of a fake terror event, but funnel the Treasury into their own pockets at the same time!

This is what I wrote last year:
I'm completely skeptical about this being a credible terrorist effort. Either the Nigerian was incompetent (quite possible) or something else is afoot...
What can you do?

Have your Representative or Senator pressure the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee to drastically reduce funding for this illegal and unconstitutional agency.

I've been in government acquisitions for some time. In that time I've learned that the lifeblood of a bureaucracy is not red, it is green. That green is your hard-earned tax dollars. If you want to threaten a soviet-style federal department, you must go after it's blood source.

Delicious Resistance

The ironic thing about this post is that I'm publishing it within TSA's secure zone within a major airport. In this day and age of tyranny and terror, one must grab his small joys while he can.

- Hugh Farnham

Editors note:  Apologies to Hugh, Shane and Jersey.  This was posted for about an hour Friday.  I mistakenly thought this was an accidental repost and pulled it down.  Hugh's been traveling and I've been working long hours and we didn't communicate.  Anyway, here it is again, featured on a Sunday.  Enjoy!  --  Silverfiddle

Saturday, January 29, 2011

America's Choice: Rotten Dictator or Islamists?

President Obama exercising a time-worn American tradition

All this Egypt stuff is giving me Latin America flashbacks.  I saw some pretty violent stuff down there.  Almost getting killed by Cubans dressed as locals was just one of the many close calls...

Anyway, I caught some Sean Hannity with a couple of blathering Muslim women on his show arguing over which was better, a soul-snuffing dictatorship or a liberty-hating Islamist regime. Sean took the side of the dictatorship.

With Friends like the Saudis and the Egyptians...

"We've got to prop up the Saudi autocracy and the Egyptian dictatorship," goes the logic.  "If Islamists take over, we'll be attacked by fundamentalists from Saudi Arabia and Egypt."  Uh.... On 9/11 we were attacked by Islamists from Saudi Arabia and Egypt, so that pretty much blows that logic.

Why can't America simply stand for liberty?
If the Jordanians or Algerians end up electing Muslim head-cutters, so what?  It's their choice, and hopefully they'll learn from it.  If the people can overthrow a Stalinist dictatorship, they can overthrow a theocracy.  And as I previously mentioned, we've already seen how effective our Saudi and Egyptian "friends" are at containing their own poison.

We should simply be on the side of liberty.  We can trade with anyone and everyone, but let's stop getting in bed with evil people.  So violent extremists take over Saudi Arabia and Kuwait...  What the hell do I care?  They've got to sell the damned oil to survive, so let's drop the crap about "securing the world's oil supply."


It's sickening watching the Obama administration's balancing act.  VP Biden insists Dictator for life Mubarack is not a dictator, and Hillary calls the dictator and his wife "close family friends," while the New York Times frets that this looks bad for President Obama since he launched his US apology to the Muslim world from Egypt.  The liberal press also worries that the contagion is spreading across the entire Muslim world.  I say, GOOD!

A Dysfunctional Umma
"The worst psychological state is a superiority complex coupled with an inferior status."
--Jagdish Bhagwati, economist
Let the whole damned boiling cauldron of hatred burn!  The whole fragging place needs a cleansing.  I've been there, I know.  It all needs to be tipped over, spilled out and flushed down the sewer.  What a rotten, stinking hellhole these red-faced, inflamed boils on the ass of global society have created for themselves.  Ordinarily, no one would care about the shit-smeared house of horrors the spawn of Ishmael have created, but the murderous lunatics keep escaping and creating bloody havoc in the civilized parts of the world.  It's time for a cleansing, and we need to get the hell out of the way. 

I started by mentioning the death and destruction I had witnessed in Central and South America.  For all of Latin America's problems, at least they know how to use toilet paper and keep decapitations to the absolute bare minimum.  Latin Americans can also face up to their past and learn from it.  Muslims are still living in a dream world that never was.

The Muslim world must come to grips with its systemic dysfunction and utter failure.  Only then can they get past it all and try to build a future.  We are not helping by propping up hate states.  They live in a festering sewer, and we shower them with billions to carpet it over and buy air fresheners to mask the stench.  Time to step back and let reality take its course.

Afterthought:  I wrote this last nigh and it looks harsh in the light of day, but I stand by it.  All I can add is that their are millions of good people in the Muslim world yearning to breath free. There are also millions of bad people dedicated to making sure that doesn't happen.  Who's side are we on?   

Friday, January 28, 2011

Progressive Logic & Compound Interest

Social Security by the Numbers

There has been a lot of talk on the left and right about slashing pensions, medical benefits, and other retirement plans of folks who are already retired, or who have contributed into those plans for many, many years.
"I would like to see any Tea Party member cut their Medicare Card. Or not to cash their SS check. Or quit their government job (whether state or federal) or refuse any benefits associated with a past or present government job."

"Federal, state, and corporate pensions should be substantially reduced if not eliminated entirely."

"A quick fix to all government budgets is to stop paying pensions and benefits."

"All pension should be abolished ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Including federal government."
You can opt out of the benefits, but not the taxes
These comments are not unique and are reflective of the problem with the progressive mindset. If you are against their programs, you ought to opt out... don't collect that social security check of which you are paying 6.2% (12.4% if you are self-employed) on the first $106,280 of income. Of course in the progressive mind, while you ought to opt out of the benefit, there is no opting out of the taxes. They seem to think that Social Security is some form of government largesse as opposed to a rather shitty return on a government mandated investment.

$252,246.35 in...
Let us perform a simple mathematical exercise on a hypothetical entrepreneur who started working at the age of 21 and who retires at age 66 on December 31,2010. This person, born in 1945 started working in 1966 and earned the maximum FICA taxable income through this period. This person, over his 45 year work history, would have paid $252,246.35 in Old Age Survivors Disability Insurance (OASDI) on his income.

The total is based on social security tables and breaks down all the payments, year by year. OASDI subtotal column used, because since 1994 there is no upper limit on what you are taxable on for Hospital Insurance (HI). In 1993, where the OASDI figure is $7142.40, our subject would have paid the maximum $3915 in HI, in 1994 there would be no maximum and our subject would have paid an HI amount based upon his total income.

$269,724 out!
Now, this person who is 66 years old, if a white male, can expect to live to 75.6 years of age, that's another 114 months. The maximum benefit payout is $2366 a month for a total annual income of $28392, so in the remainder of his life (ignoring cost of living increases) the social security payout will be $269,724 presuming he gets the full amount without any income offsets. AH HA you progressives exclaim... evil white conservative guy is stealing $17,478.

What if you put the money in a bank account instead?
But compound interest makes it a more interesting story. If our subject wasn't very investment savvy and had simply stuck all that FICA money in a savings account at 1% interest, he would have ended up with $285,833.49, more than enough to cover his predicted withdrawals of $2366/mo and his heirs would have received $30,062 (remember, the principal keeps earning interest). Had he invested conservatively and received an average return of 4% when he retired his portfolio would have been worth $440,270 and his heirs would have received $299,960.34... as it stands now, the SSA pockets all that money (or they would if the government didn't play funny money games).

What if you invest it?
Suppose instead that our subject had invested all that money in stocks, from 1966 until the day he retired. The Standard & Poor's annual average rate of return from 1966-2010 was 10.95%, had our subject invested wisely his portfolio upon his retirement would have been worth $1,621,653.73 and if he continued to earn 10.95% interest and withdrew only the maximum allowable under social security ($2366), when he died the portfolio would have been worth $4,074,116.83. So you can see, your government largesse has screwed our poor fellow and his heirs out of $3,804,392.83

So instead of not cashing my social security check, how 'bout I fold it into sharp corners and shove it up your...

That's the problem with progressives, they take your money and expect you to be obsequiously grateful as they dole out the pittance they think you deserve.

Compound Interest calculated using:

Thursday, January 27, 2011

How to Avoid Poverty

The child poverty rate for single-parent children is quadruple that of children living in a two parent home

While investigating poverty statistics,  I quickly found myself detoured into a thicket of indignant liberal apologists who blame child poverty on corporations, lack of government assistance, greedy rightwingers, anything and everything except irresponsible behavior.

Underlying much of the liberal argumentation was a barely-contained hostility and scorn for the very institution of marriage.

Has our society become so emotion-driven that we can no longer analyze the facts as they stand?

People on the left hate the single-parent/two-parent poverty rate statistic. There it stands. In black and white. They can’t blow it up, so they instead make the illogical leap of declaring that anyone who mouths this statistic is criticizing single parents. This is a non-sequitur. The conclusion that single parents are bad people does not follow from the stated premise. Any of us who know single parents know how ridiculous this is. But that’s not the point. The point is to blunt the argument and shut down the conversation.
“… a Republican state legislator from Colorado, [...] argued on Monday that families can stay out of poverty by avoiding having kids outside of marriage.

"Those children are almost guaranteed to be in poverty," Swalm remarked in an interview after speaking out against House Bill 10-1002, which would provide much-needed tax relief for Colorado's poor. "You don't want kids in poverty? Don't have kids out of wedlock."  (

Progressives hate such personal responsibility talk, so they use emotional appeal to demonize people who point out the obvious…
“House Speaker Terrance Carroll rightly identified Rep. Swalm's comments as "an insult to every single person who lives in poverty, who works their butt off every day just to keep their head above water."” (
The child poverty rate for single-parent children is quadruple that of children living in a two parent home. That’s a fact, and not one outraged liberal could actually explain how this statistic insults “every single person who lives in poverty, who works their butt off every day just to keep their head above water."

Here’s the best liberal argument I could find:
“It's that he got his causation all mixed up. These statistics shed light on a real problem: single-parent households (and not just in Colorado) struggle with low incomes disproportionately more than families led by two parents.

But whether a child winds up living in poverty can't be boiled down to the number of parents he lives with. Countless factors, like unequal access to affordable health care and educational opportunities, play a huge role.” (
Tis true that correlation is not causation, but as any exhausted single mom or dad can tell you, it’s hard work keeping it all together. This is not about demonizing people who have suffered misfortune, it’s about identifying what works. Refusing to hold up the traditional two-parent family as the ideal is nuts. Single parents will tell you that a two-parent family is the ideal.
“After all, what single-parent families need definitely isn't an extra dose of unfounded criticism. They need the resources to help their children succeed.” (

This is not about criticizing single parents; it’s about warning other off this very difficult path. MTV has a whole reality series based on the travails of those who give birth out of wedlock.

This is what’s wrong with our dialog nowadays. We cannot have a rational discussion without people getting huffy and taking offense. Platitudinous twaddle clouds the issue. Go look at the cited article’s comment thread and shudder. One suggests HUD should do more. Another criticizes mean-spirited conservatives for suggesting that those on the public dole submit to drug testing. Anything to avoid stating the obvious and putting the burden for success or failure where it belongs: On the individual.
Sawhill and social researcher Ron Haskins authored a book, Creating an Opportunity Society (Brookings, 2009), in which they assess what are in reality the extremely low barriers to exploiting opportunity in the U.S. They note that a youth who finishes high school, gets married before having children, and maintains a steady job is almost guaranteed middle-class status, no matter what his background. Those three conditions shouldn't prove insurmountable for anyone. (The American Spectator)

Put more simply, here are Dr. Walter E. Williams’ Rules for Avoiding Poverty

* Graduate high school
* Get married before you have children
* If you get married, stay married
* Get a job, any job. A minimum wage job is a stepping stone
* Avoid engaging in criminal behavior

Further Reading:

Heritage – Marriage and Child Poverty

Cornell Study

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

End the Welfare State - Towards a New Morality

The Progressive Welfare State encourages irresponsible behavior and enslaves people, making them wards of the taxpayer and eventually rendering them helpless, and hopeless.  It would be less destructive to end all government assistance.

I tire of discussions dealing with how to incentivize the stupid, the irresponsible, the indigent and the downright lazy.  Our welfare system has produced multi-generational poverty and people too fat to leave their government-provided dwellings.  These government slums are gang-infested anyway, so it's not just the morbidly obese who are veritable prisoners in these cinderblock jungles.

Government concerns itself with so many questions.  How do we keep people off of drugs, get kids to go to school, make parents responsible, reduce crime...

A shared code of morality used to take care of much of this, but shame is dead and virtue sneered at.  We're left scratching our heads wondering how we can get irresponsible people to change their destructive behavior.

Natural Consequences

It's time to knock down the taxpayer-funded wall between irresponsible behavior and natural consequences.  You don't work you don't eat.  Blow your mind out on drugs and booze, and you will be living off the charity of others for the rest of your life--Uncle Sam won't help you.  Crank out all the kids you want, but you're paying for them.  You need food and housing?  Work for it like the majority of your fellow citizens do!

The safety net is now a hammock.  The progressive nanny state has spawned multi-generations of innocent victims who no longer know how to care for themselves, and it has also spawned legions of deadbeats gaming the system.  Left unchecked it will destroy America; it is already depriving us of the human capital we need to advance the economy. 

Cut off all public assistance

No housing, no welfare checks, no food stamps.  This would be a wonderful boon to those enslaved by progressivism.  People would learn again to be thrifty and self-sufficient.  Generous Americans would put their money in local charities that are better able to sort the deadbeats from the truly needy.  Best of all, families would grow closer and help one another, as it should be.  The moral choice between buying myself a new car or helping my broken down old Dad is crystal clear.

The beauty of this plan is that the incentives are self-evident and the consequences are natural

If sitting on your ass all day swilling sugared drinks and playing XBox instead of going to school has make you fat and stupid, you're going to have a harder time finding a job.  You will be unable to buy food and shelter, and you will be saddled with health problems.  That's not a nice life to look forward to, but at least you will serve as a warning to others.


Some will call this a cruel policy.  I was called all but un-Christian by a liberal in Left Blogistan for suggesting this in a thread.  WWJD?  I doubt he would advocate a government-run shakedown operation to "spread it around."   He commands us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, take care of the widows and orphans...  families used to do this until Uncle Sam stepped in, short-circuited our charitable activities and shook us down to build a multibillion dollar Frankenstein's monster.

This is why I say progressives are not evil.  They are merely delusional pollyannas who eschew time-tested ways and ignore human nature, instead preferring "modern," "scientific" nostrums cooked up by eggheads.  The more pointy-headed the intellectualism, the better.

They had a good run through the 20th century, but reality has a way of reasserting itself.  The progressive dream has turned into a nightmare, as it spawns an ever growing criminality, irresponsibility, dependency and despondency.  Time to try what's worked since the dawn of time.

A government check lasts days.  Virtue and character are timeless.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sacred Constitution

Another day, another lefty smear...

We on the right do not believe the constitution is "sacred," we do not have a constitution "fetish" and we do not revere the founding fathers as gods sitting upon Mount Olympus. God did not carve the articles with lightning bolts, and George Washington did not carry them down from Mt Vernon, beard turned white from the encounter. We also know our history and understand the great debates and compromises that went into crafting the document.

"Constitutionalism" Blocks the Progressive Agendas of All Parties
We also don't believe that the constitution should not be changed. We merely believe it stands as written and currently amended, and should not be violated. If you want to do something that contravenes it, you must follow the amendment process. Proto-progressives understood this, hence amendments to ban alcohol and institute an income tax. Nowadays, these pseudo-intellectual busybodies are too arrogant to debate with the grubby hoi polloi, so they use raw bureaucratic power to ram through their progressive projects.

The overblown rhetoric and ridicule is meant to diminish the conservative cause and mask the progressive's dangerous disdain for our foundational principles.

Michael Lind is just one of the legion of goosestepping foot soldiers who has written one more stupid article on the subject.  He follows the lefty catechism by first smearing everybody to the right of himself (which is now, tee hee hee, an expanding majority)...
"Now that the Republican Party, founded as a northern party opposed to the extension of slavery, is disproportionately a party of white Southern reactionaries"
He must have been out of the country, or out of his mind high on hopium this last election. It's entertaining and encouraging that the craven, clutching, shriveled band of leftists think over 60% of the country are toothless, racist hicks. That's a sure way to bring people to your side, Michael! Keep it up.

A "Living" Constitution
He then tiredly employs the boilerplate liberal arguments about how we worship the founders and their documents.  Ho hum. Charles Krauthammer gets to the heart of the matter. This is really a fight over what the constitution means:
"Originalism has grown to become the major challenger to the liberal "living Constitution" school, under which high courts are channelers of the spirit of the age, free to create new constitutional principles accordingly."
Progressives hate a strict interpretation of the constitution because it stands in their way, and that is exactly what the document is supposed to do. Democrats and Republicans have been violating the document for over 100 years, with the consent of black-robed mullas. Imagine if it were merely treated as a notional ideal; we would be living in a much less free and less prosperous nation.

The Constitution is predicated on the belief that we are all free people with God-given rights, and no other man, nor government may violate them. The statists have it ass-backwards, thinking our rights come from the government. The ink stained propagandists, like their partners in government, are frustrated to no end that "the experts" cannot twist and knead public policy to herd us like cattle and goosestep us all into a brighter progressive future.

Clarity over Agreement

This concentrated attack on conservatives by the liberal press is instructive. The press is not neutral; it is biased. They are now reduced to strawman arguments and comparing the Republicans choosing to not read the superseded parts of the constitution with the editor that has censored Twain's Huckleberry Finn.
“You’re not supposed to worship your Constitution,” (Democratic Congressman Jerrold) Nadler huffed. “You are supposed to govern your government by it.” (Quoted in Human Events)

Govern the government by the constitution? We'd settle for that! We drop the "worship," and government actually starts governing by the constitution. That's a deal liberty-lovers can live with!

We are winning, my fellow tea partiers. Indignant howls from the liberal press are our victory trumpets.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Concealed carry is serious business

Anti-gun progressives just don't get it, and they won't be happy until the state has disarmed everyone

According to bed-wetter William Saletan, we’re lucky. He tells the story of armed citizen Joe Zamudio, who heard the shots coming from the Safeway that fateful Saturday when a congresswoman, a judge, a nine-year old girl, and other innocent victims were gunned down in cold blood...

This is a much more dangerous picture than has generally been reported. Zamudio had released his safety and was poised to fire when he saw what he thought was the killer still holding his weapon. Zamudio had a split second to decide whether to shoot. He was sufficiently convinced of the killer's identity to shove the man into a wall. But Zamudio didn't use his gun. That's how close he came to killing an innocent man. He was, as he acknowledges, "very lucky."

That's what happens when you run with a firearm to a scene of bloody havoc. In the chaos and pressure of the moment, you can shoot the wrong person. Or, by drawing your weapon, you can become the wrong person—a hero mistaken for a second gunman by another would-be hero with a gun. Bang, you're dead. Or worse, bang bang bang bang bang: a firefight among several armed, confused, and innocent people in a crowd. It happens even among trained soldiers. Among civilians, the risk is that much greater.
We're enormously lucky that Zamudio, without formal training, made the right split-second decisions. We can't count on that the next time some nut job starts shooting.

Only a gun-fearing, thumb-sucking big-government sheeple could draw such a conclusion. In fact, a reasonable person draws the exact opposite conclusion from the story. Two armed citizens acting not like the trigger-happy cowboys that populate the cringing imaginations of gun-grabbers, but two men taking measure of the situation and acting on the side of prudence and caution.  The total absence of such fanciful stories Saletin conjures is a glaring refutation of his conclusion.

We do not have concealed carry citizens shooting up crime scenes, killing innocent bystanders and other would-be rescuers. I just hasn’t happened. I can say that with confidence without doing my characteristic research. Had even one such event ever occurred in the last 30 years, the liberal media would still be shouting through bullhorns about it.

Mr. Zamudio’s story, combined with the absence of Saletin’s fearful fantasies, proves that Americans are adults and can be trusted with their rights, including the right to arm themselves.

If gun restrictions are so effective, why do “gun free zones” like New Jersey and California experience more gun violence than free-carry states like Arizona, Montana and Colorado?

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Live and Let Die: The Creepy Side of Progressivism

With progressive screams of “Palin is an accessory to murder!” still fouling the air, a story emerges from Philadelphia of a macabre chamber of horrors sponsored, funded and championed by progressives. 

The gory details of abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s charnel house read like something out of a Wes Craven movie. Sadly, it’s all real, right here in America.

A Twisted Idea of Morality
The morality of a woman’s right to choose trumping human life is twisted and repulsive. It is important to recall that this dubious concept was developed by the likes of racist eugenicist Margaret Sanger. A progressive hero, Sanger’s work was referenced by Nazis as justification for killing not just Jews, but gypsies, homosexuals, the disabled, the elderly and generally anyone else who was unwanted by society or deemed undesirable.

Think I’m being harsh? Let’s try out one of the abortion advocates’ favorite thought exercises, The Fireman’s Dilemma:

You’re a fireman rushing into a burning building with only seconds to spare. You spy a three-year old girl on the right, and a petri dish containing 20 fertilized human embryos on the left. You only have time to save one, which do you save? One life or 20?

It’s a ridiculous hypothetical trap set to spring on pro-lifers. Its purpose is to suck us into the depraved world of "moral" judgments where we weigh the value of one human life against another. Questions such as this are employed by philosophers to plumb the depths of a thought or idea, but treating it as if it has relevance in real life is absurd. And when has something like this ever really happened? Even if the hypothetical fireman had time to discern that the dish contained fertilized ova, his natural instinct would be to grab the fearful, crying girl and go. In real life, you do what you can.

The Devil’s Dilemma

Here’s the creepy, progressive eugenics part of this thought experiment: What if the choice were between an old person and a young person? Do you save a severely handicapped man or the beautiful and healthy young woman? Does a Chinese research scientist with a 180 IQ get saved instead of a cute little Mexican boy who is illiterate and struggles in his special ed classes?

See where this leads? Human beings have no right to evaluate the worthiness of other human beings and decide who lives and who dies. It is a slippery slope to hell greased with the blood of “undesirables.”

To the pro-choice crowd I ask, how can you condemn this man? 
How can you call this murder, but killing the baby inside the mother OK? Do your morals really hinge on such a thin legal distinction?

Based on pro-abortion logic, this man should not be tried for murdering the babies because the mothers wanted these children dead and he ran a legal practice that did just that.

This is the legal fiction (as Rick Santorum calls it) we have in this country: If the mother does not want the baby, he is tissue and can be aborted. If he is fortunate enough to be wanted by the mother, the law confers person-hood on him and it is murder to kill him.

Pro-abortion advocates cannot call for Gosnell being charged with murder without contradicting their own stance.

Safe, Legal and Rare
The Margaret Sanger Eugenics wing of the Democratic party likes to repeat over and over how abortion should be “safe, legal and rare,” warning us of the dangers of illegal, back alley abortions that harm and kill women if we outlawed the practice. Well, abortion is legal. So tell us how this house of horrors happened?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Good Reads for a Saturday

I'm working overtime when I should be up in the mountains skiing or out on the plains hunting. Can't complain, beats the heck out of being unemployed...

Here are some good reads for a Saturday:

Victor Davis Hanson really slams sheriff Dupnik, asking why he blames everyone but himself, since evidence now shows his office had various run-ins with the killer but apparently had a standing catch and release policy.
More disturbing still, if Dupnik were right that a pre-existing conservative climate of hate-engendered politics was not only pervasive in Tucson, but also might prompt an unstable person to kill, why had he not dispatched at least one of his 500 officers to patrol the open-air public event sponsored by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords?
Hard to argue with that logic. Here’s more…
Dupnik is a good example of an increasingly common bad habit of local politicians to resort to cosmic sermonizing when more mundane challenges go unaddressed.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was a past master of lecturing about the cosmic while sometimes ignoring the more concrete. Governing the boroughs of an often-chaotic New York City is nearly impossible. Pontificating on the evils of smoking, fatty foods and supposed anti-Muslim bigotry was not only far easier but had established the mayor as a national figure of sensitivity and caring, praised for his progressive declarations by supporters of everything from global warming to abortion.
But Bloomberg's carefully constructed philosopher's image was finally shattered by the December 2010 blizzard and his own asleep-at-the-wheel reaction. An incompetent municipal response to record snowfalls barricaded millions in their borough houses and apartments, amid lurid rumors of deliberate union-sponsored slowdowns by Bloomberg's city crews. (VDH - Global Sermonizing)
Hanson moves on to California in much the same vein. Elected officials should stop “cosmic sermonizing,” shut up and do what the taxpayers are paying them to do.

John Hood has written piece in National Affairs entitled, The States in Crisis, in which he presents the cold hard facts, complete with charts. It is the best presentation I’ve seen so far that explains what’s going on with state budgets.

He starts off with the scary tidbit that state government employed various budget tricks back in the good times, and the recession has now hastened the calamitous reckoning that inevitably follows such chicanery.

Could bankruptcy be in some states' futures?  Sounds scary, but not nearly as scary as them picking our pockets and carrying on as if nothing needs to change. 

Friday, January 21, 2011

It Was a Very Good Week

"Government is the great fiction through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else." -- Frederic Bastiat
The Wisdom of George Will...
It takes a worried man to sing a worried song, and in a recent speech that seemed like Larry Summers's swan song, the president's now-departed economic adviser warned that America is "at risk of a profound demoralization with respect to government."
The idea that America's problem of governance is one of inadequate resources misses this lesson of the last half-century: No amount of resources can prevent government from performing poorly when it tries to perform too many tasks, or particular tasks for which it is inherently unsuited.
Actually, government is not sufficiently demoralized. (George Will)

Representative Giffords' recovery proceeds at a miraculous pace, and the big lefty smear has failed. The House voted to repeal health care, and I'm still employed.  It's been a good week.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 20, 2011


We are suffering the consequences of decisions made at the federal, state and local government level

These decisions were made by people we elected, so the pain we are going through is self-inflicted.  The first step on the road to recovery is to own up to our mistakes.  Victor Davis Hanson has a good article on the agitated state of those who are mired in a misery of their own making but still refuse to own up.

The problem as I see it is that government has protected us from the consequences of our actions.  Put more specifically, those areas of public and private life that are shielded from the results of irresponsible behavior become chaotic, dysfunctional, bankrupt.

Imagine if you were shielded from the consequences of your actions in your own personal life... 

You could cuss out the boss and beat up that annoying coworker in the parking lot and drive home satisfied in a car you decided to stop making payments on.  Drink till you fall down, buy a continuous stream of electronic goodies, to hell with the household budget.  No hangovers, kick the bills down the road... What a life! 

The real world doesn't work that way, and we know it.  Yet we allowed silver-tongued government orators to sprinkle magic pixie dust on everything and suspend disbelief.  

"Predatory Lending" and Other Government-Sponsored Ideas
Have you heard that public service radio spot about avoiding predatory lenders?  It encourages the blissfully ignorant to ask questions before they sign those mortgage documents.

Am I the only one who finds the idea of "predatory lenders" absurd?  Think about it.  If you suddenly found yourself flush with $10 million after hitting the lotto and decided you wanted to make more money, would you do so by "predatory lending?"  Would you accost poor people on the street, "Here, take this cash you can't pay back!"  Of course you wouldn't.  That would be a quick road to losing your newfound fortune.

End Government Backing of All Mortgages
Now, what if the federal government agreed to step in and assume responsibility for the loans you write, relieving you of all responsibility when the borrower defaults?  Then you'd probably hand the loans out like candy and get fat on the up front fees and interest you collect before the crash.  That is how the mortgage crisis happened.  The federal government, through Fannie and Freddie, shielded the lenders from the consequences of their shoddy lending practices.  The federal government now holds around 90% of all mortgages:  The good, the bad and the ugly, which means we're all on the hook for the irresponsibility of the government and our fellow citizens.

End Government Insurance of Wall Street
The Wall Street crash and subsequent raid on the US Treasury by Dirty Hank Paulson's band of pirates is a similar tale.  The DC-NY Axis of Evil plays a game of "heads Wall Street wins, tails taxpayers lose," encouraging wild speculation binges.  We shield big banking from the consequences of its actions and then wonder why the bankster bandits rip us off to pay their gambling debts.  If they had to worry about losing the house, or Guido busting their kneecaps, they would act responsibly.

Stop Rewarding Bad Behavior with Government Cash
Individual citizens who have no shame can cash in as well.  Swill sucrose-laden drinks, eat like a hog until you're too fat to fit through your front door, and you can collect disability, making a mockery of the system and tarring with the same shameful brush those who legitimately receive benefits.  Take drugs and drop out of school and you are eligible for government housing, food stamps and other taxpayer-funded assistance.  Crank out kids you can't afford and Uncle Sam will step in, shake down the taxpayers and reward you for your copious breeding habits.  Serial impregnators love that one.  They can knock her up and leave, knowing we suckers will pick up the tab.

It's time we faced up to the consequences of our actions, on a governmental as well as a personal level.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

FCC: Fascists Controlling Communication

Inside Every Progressive is a Tyrant Struggling to be Free... And Oppress Others

When liberals like Al Crapton (he calls Limbaugh "Lumbar," so I call Sharpton, "Crapton") shout about conservatives having no right to talk on public airwaves, it means liberal talk radio is getting its ass kicked by conservatives.

When irrelevant nobodies like the Reverend or any MSNBC ranter talks like this, no one even takes notice anymore. Their audience can fit in a port-o-potty.

But when a government official proposes such dangerous and un-American absurdities, it's time to sit up and take notice.

FCC Commissioner Michael Copps is proposing all radio and TV stations that broadcast over public airwaves submit to a "public values test."

Copps had suggested that the test would make a broadcaster's license renewal contingent upon proof that they meet a prospective set of federal criteria. (Hillicon Valley – FCC Push)
Local boards packed with angry, agenda-driven liberals would sit in judgment on radio and tv stations, using government-approved criteria such as "Diversity Compliance."  Gotta have the government recommended daily amount of one legged lesbian church bishops, gay soldiers, peace-loving Muslims and of course the stupidest species in America:  The White Male Father and Husband!

Progressives cannot win in the free marketplace of ideas so they propose to use the coercive power of the state to shut it all down.

Media outlets would be required to submit to the Ministry of Truth disclosure reports and programming plans proving their worthiness and "meaningful commitment to public affairs and news programming."  Progressive toadies and bullhorn-wielding activists at the local level will be the foot soldiers in this Obama-approved Hush Rush campaign.  

And make no mistake, Copps and his fellow statists want to expand their purview to all communications outlets, including cable and internet.  Here is Der Kommissar in his own words:
"What we've had in recent years is an aberration where we have had no oversight of the media.

It's a pretty serious situation that we're in. I think American media has a bad case of substance abuse right now. We are not producing the body of news and information that democracy needs to conduct its civic dialogue [...] we have to reverse that trend." (Copps quoted at NewsBusters)
Is this guy crazy? We've got news coming out our ears. Yes, much of it is sports and celebrity-driven frivolity, but serious news and analysis is as close as your computer keyboard or local library periodicals section.

All Palin, All the Time
Maybe he has in mind a press that flocked to Alaska for synchronized Sara Palin dumpster dives?  This same press corps spent more time investigating an Ohio plumber than they did the Democratic nominee for president. Is this the news media dereliction the FCC Kommissar seeks to stamp out?  I doubt it.

The IBD editors ask the most important question:
Who is Copps to make such demands? And why does a man who thinks like a tyrant hold such a high-ranking position in the U.S. government?
It's reasonable to ask, as Republican Rep. Joe Barton of Texas did in a letter to Copps this week, if the commissioner means to give the federal governmentthe power to determine what content is available for Americans to consume. (IBD)
Indeed.  The federal government and its batwinged gargoyles like Copps are not neutral.  They are biased and are therefore unfit to be the arbiters of what free men and women can or cannot read, see and hear.  We're smart enough to figure it out on our own without a paternalistic statist holding our hand.  MSNBC's ratings are in the toilet; America knows crap when they see it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Libertarian Nation

Libertarian Nation?  We’re not quite there yet…
* 10% Self-identify as libertarian
* 23 % responded to questions about the role of government in a way that categorizes them as libertarian

A survey conducted by Zogby for the Cato Institute has put the libertarian vote at around 15 percent. Loosen the wording, and the pool expands. When the Zogby survey asked voters if they would describe themselves as fiscally conservative and socially liberal, also known as libertarian, the number rose to 44 percent. When it simply asked if they were fiscally conservative and socially liberal, a full 59 percent responded yes. (
Libertarian Me

I have turned libertarian over the past few years. There are many strains, but I tend more towards the Hayek/founding fathers variety. That makes me an “impure” medium-core libertarian, although I’m an avid fan of anarcho-capitalist and modern-day libertarian patriarch Murray Rothbard. The man is brilliant and his logic is unassailable, but I still believe in a state as envisioned by the founders.

Christian Me

Social conservatives consider us turncoats and libertines, especially those of us who are conservative Christians. I make my moral decisions based upon my Christian beliefs, but I make political ones based upon our nation’s secular bible, The US Constitution. This leads me to personally oppose gay marriage, but to also declare that the state should not interfere. I also believe, based on the same constitution, that the state may not punish churches that refuse to conduct same-sex ceremonies.

“Libertarianism gets marginalized in American politics because it doesn’t fit into the two-party paradigm. Libertarians want less state intrusion into the market, which aligns them with Republicans, but also less interference in social choices, which aligns them with Democrats. As Massachusetts governor William Weld put it in 1992, I want the government out of your pocketbook and your bedroom.(
The author goes on to note that “libertarianism is more internally consistent than the Democratic or Republican platforms,” which is what makes it so appealing to rational minded individuals. Tyranny is tyranny, regardless of which party wields it. If I oppose liberal democrats hijacking the power of the state in the name of social justice, how can I support George Bush’s Office of Faith Base Initiatives?
“At least the highwayman would take your money and leave you alone.  The government takes your money, then stands around and tells you what to do with it” -- Douglas French, President, Mises Institute
You may be more libertarian than you think.  Christopher Beam has written a pretty good article about libertarianism today entitled, The Trouble With Liberty.  He takes a skeptical view, but he's fairly even-handed, taking only a few gentle cheap shots.  If you're curious about libertarianism and the tea party tie-in, you should go read the whole article.

If you're hungry for more, here are my favorite libertarian links.  There are many, many more than these, but these best accord with my "brand" of libertarianism.

The CATO Institute is America's preeminent libertarian think tank.  CATO@Liberty is their blog.

Reason Magazine is my favorite libertarian publication.  Full of fun and interesting stuff updated daily, with writers such as Drew Carey, Penn and Teller, John Stossel and David Harsanyi.

The flagship of Austrian School Economics is The Ludwig von Mises Institute.  It's not just wonky economics, so don't be scared off.  Fresh articles on freedom and liberty daily, as well as classic writing from the past that are relevant to today's topics.

For a principled criticism of Austrian School Economics, you can read Professor Bryan Caplan's paper, Why I am Not an Austrian Economist

Monday, January 17, 2011

America in the Progressive Stranglehold

What is Progressivism? 

Progressivism springs from a basic human urge to sort, organize, and move the human lot along the road of progress.  Life is messy, and progressives are intent on cleaning it up, usually shouting "science!" to justify their latest assault on the sovereignty of the individual. 

Conservatism does not rule the day here.  We are living in a progressive age ushered in over 100 years ago.

Professor Thomas G. West explains progressivism's roots:
A growing body of scholars -- including John Marini, Charles Kesler, R.J. Pestritto and my colleague Tiffany Miller -- finds the origins of today’s liberalism in the Progressive era. Leading intellectuals of that day openly repudiated the principles of the American founding. In that group, Wilson is often highlighted because he was uniquely both a major politician and an academic.

Referring to his own time period, Wilson continues,
“Life is so complicated that we are not dealing with the old conditions, and that the law has to step in and create new conditions under which we may live.”
In other words, the Founders’ idea of protecting property rights is outmoded. We need a government that intrudes into and even micromanages the private sphere. 

Wilson anticipates today’s liberals by telling Americans to follow the example of Europe:
“In the city of Glasgow, for example (Glasgow is one of the model cities of the world), they have made up their minds that the entries and the hallways of [apartment buildings] are public streets. Therefore, ... the lighting department of the city sees to it that the lights are abundantly lighted.”

Glasgow is Wilson’s ideal. Government knows best. (NY Times - Government in Every Part of Life)
Think of Obama as a Wilson only without the professorship, scholarly writing, or intellectual firepower.  All he's got is a hopium-fueled cult of personality redolent of charismatic third world maximum leaders.  Nonetheless, he harbors the same Wilsonian belief in the power of the state over the petty concerns of the individual

George Will does an excellent job explaining why progressives persist in their pseudo-intellectual utopianism:
The point of progressivism is that the people must progress up from their backwardness. They cannot do so unless they are pulled toward the light by a government composed of the enlightened - experts coolly devoted to facts and science.

The progressive agenda is actually legitimated by the incomprehension and anger it elicits: If the people do not resent and resist what is being done on their behalf, what is being done is not properly ambitious. If it is comprehensible to its intended beneficiaries, it is the work of insufficiently advanced thinkers.

Of course the masses do not understand that the only flaw of the stimulus was its frugality, and that Obamacare's myriad coercions are akin to benevolent parental discipline. (George Will - Progressives)
Progressivism is not pretty, but like a car wreck or the face of a benevolent dictator, we must look upon it and learn what it is in order to save ourselves.  We must, before its practitioners declare the hallways of our houses a public thoroughfare that can only be lighted by government-approved means.

Oops!  Too late...  They've already banned the incandescent bulb...

Further reading
CSM - Progressives
Heritage Foundation - The Progressive Movement

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Saving Liberalism from the Liberals

Walter Russell Mead asks, "Can the L-Word be saved?"

It's a good question, and one important to this nation, which was founded upon classical liberal ideals.  It's been all down hill since then for liberalism, with its path winding through Fabian Socialism, illiberal nationalism, elitist progressivism and ending up in the dark caverns of tribalism, identity politics, and because-we-say-so-ism.

I do not hate liberals. Some of those nearest and dearest to me are liberals.  I was saddened when a liberal coworker moved on to greener pastures, because he is a very intelligent man and we had some awesome conversations while leaning on our shovels.

The words liberal and libertarian both come from the word liberty, but they diverged long ago and we here in America have hopelessly tangled up our terms.  Mr. Mead explains...
Politically speaking, America may be the most confused country in the world.  Millions of people in this country are conservatives and even reactionaries who think they are liberals; we have millions more liberals and radicals who call themselves conservative.

It is an unholy mess and it needs to be cleared up.  It’s time for a language intervention.
Many find such conversations pedantic and insist that the terms are what they are in this country and who cares if we've got it backwards?  But if you are a thinker trying to get to the root of the matter, you must start by defining terms and tracing today's movements back to their philosophical roots.  Clarity demands it.

"Liberals" sneering at tea partiers who cite the constitution provides a clue that liberalism has gone off the rails; progressives voluntarily severed ties with such antiquities in the early 20th century, and liberals inexplicably fell in with them.  Progressive politicians greatly expanded the commerce clause and the general welfare clause, and progressive judges let them get away with it.  We were grappling with wars and economic crashes, you see, so the president and congress needed extraordinary powers.  And today's liberals, with a straight face, would have us believe George Bush's post-911 bureaucratic expansion and increased government powers was a singularly unprecedented even in our nation's history.  Sadly, it was just one more brick in the wall.

Know Yourself (Socrates).  Know Your Enemy (Sun-Tsu)
Most liberals cannot explain liberalism, because it is an incoherent hodgepodge of pollyanic aspirations, musty dogma and high dudgeon.  Worse for them though, is that they cannot explain conservatism, and they are blind to the evidence that the tea party has a strain of radical liberalism running through it, while they have become the entrenched fuddy duddies on so many issues.  I urge my fellow conservatives and libertarians to not make the same mistake.  You must understand the ideology you do battle with.
most of what passes for liberal and progressive politics is a conservative reaction against economic and social changes that the left doesn’t like.  The people who call themselves liberal in the United States today are fighting desperate rearguard actions to save policies and institutions that are old and established, that once served a noble purpose, but that now need fundamental reform (and perhaps in some cases abolition) ...
Liberals Started With Noble Ideals
I also urge everyone to study liberalism with charity in your heart.  Along the way you may find liberalism has some admirable qualities.  American liberalism is not communism after all.  Liberals and Progressives did not set out with the intent to enslave us.  They perceived real problems and set about trying to solve them:
The industrial revolution and associated phenomena (urbanization, mass immigration from non-English speaking, non-Protestant societies, the economic decline of small farmers and rural communities) presented liberals with new and very complicated problems. The problems of urbanization, class conflict (and the competition with socialism for the support of urban industrial workers), assimilation, and the regulation of a modern industrial economy gave 4.0 liberals new issues to worry about.
The development of a professional, bureaucratic civil service and the regulatory state were intended to preserve individual autonomy and dignity in a world dominated by large and predatory corporate interests – and split into classes with most industrial and agricultural workers subject to very low wages, long hours and poor working conditions.
At the same time the challenges of modernization and urbanization (public health, food safety, provision of newly necessary services like electricity and gas) could best be met through public services and, in some cases, heavily regulated private monopolies.  The professional and managerial classes were not just middle classes in the sense of standing between the rich and the poor in income and status; they were mediating classes who sought through the state, the universities and the learned professions to impose a balance between the interests of the wealthy and the workers.
Mead gives them their deserved props, but concludes that rather than take a revanchist approach, liberals need to move on, and realize that while their goals were noble, they snuffed human liberty and initiative in the process. Keep the goals but ditch the totalitarian tactics

Mead also looks forward to a new liberalism, which he calls Liberalism 5.0.  I recommend you go read the entire article.  He provides a concise history of American liberalism.  If the libs got their heads screwed on straight, they'd make common cause with the tea partiers.

Walter Russell Mead - Can the L-Word be Saved?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

It's Saturday!

"Take a lesson," Westerners...

Christians are being murdered, persecuted and chased out of Muslim lands. If the roles were reversed, Christians attacking Muslims, the world would rightly be crying ethnic cleansing.

Here's what a "moderate" Pakistani imam had to say about the cold-blooded murder of a politician by his bodyguard.  The politician has defended a Christian woman against accusations of blasphemy:
They even went so far as to warn government officials and journalists that the “supporter is as equally guilty as one who committed blasphemy,” and so therefore they should all take “a lesson from the exemplary death” of Salman Taseer. (NY Post)
Are we able to take a lesson?

Pension and benefit packages threaten to collapse entire cities and states

Benefits packages for government workers are unsustainable, and we need to have a responsible discussion focused on the financial facts. The purported cupidity or sanctity of the pensioners has nothing to do with the facts on the ground. If someone opened the door to paradise, who among us would not walk in? So it's not about the people, it's about the fiscal mess we are now in.

We set up a system where people could grab with both hands while being completely insulated from the consequences.

What's the Answer?

Privatize it. City workers, teachers, auditors, logistics. This is not a knock against public servants. The good ones will get hired by the private sector and the bad ones will no longer be able to scam the system. End all government pensions and drive everyone to a 401K-type retirement plan. End all government health insurance plans and drive everyone to private insurance. End government disability programs; anyone who wants such protection can buy it in the public insurance market. These actions would put our federal, state and local governments on a pay as we go basis, reducing future unfunded liabilities.

Sound draconian? The private sector has already done it.

Further Reading:

Nugent Schools Rosanne Barr

Go here and watch Ted Nugent school Rosanne Barr

Notice how every time he shuts her down she moves on to another issue?

My favorite line was when the host said Obama had accomplishments before becoming president; he helped the people of Chicago, to which Uncle Ted replied:  "The people of Chicago don't look very helped to me"

Have a happy weekend!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cut Government - Start by Dumping the FCC

The FCC is an outmoded appendage of the past.  Time to shut it down.  As a bonus, we would save $325 million per year in the process

The same organization that forced all consumers to buy Ma Bell-made telephones for decades, the same FCC that enforced speech codes via radio "fairness doctrines," the same FCC that took two decades after its invention to OK cellular technology for the marketplace and acted similarly sluggishly with cable and satellite innovation has no business online.  (Harsanyi)
Jack Shafer sees the FCC's latest "Net Neutrality" power grab as a "solution" looking for a problem:
The FCC's sense of urgency may befuddle you. After all, the many-colored, hydra-headed, and infernally useful beast that is the U.S. Internet came into being without government demands and decrees. Without commandments from the FCC or anybody else, American broadband companies invested tens of billions of dollars to create an Internet infrastructure for their customers.
He also explains how the free market works:
Would any of the companies currently in the broadband game have built their systems without the expectation that they could "leverage" their investment? I doubt it.

Do they lust for an Internet environment that imprisons us in their "walled garden" and bleeds us for every penny during our stay? Of course they do.

But then why—in the absence of FCC regulatory powers to ban such Internet land-grabs—haven't the broadband providers erected such walled gardens?

Because 1) they face competition from another broadband provider and don't want to give their customers an incentive to leave, or 2) where they're the only broadband provider, they tend not to want to give a potential competitor encouragement to enter their market.

That's it in a nutshell.  This isn't about the Orwellian sounding "Net Neutrality" or "Open Internet."  As David Harsanyi warns us...
"... doublespeak is still flourishing [...] it reminds us that the FCC's institutional positions conflict with the vibrancy and freedom of the Internet." (Harsanyi)

It's about power and control.  The progressive urge to regulate every last corner of our lives is metastisizing and has spread to the internet
Even the staunchest net neutrality advocate will concede that net neutrality is a fuzzy concept. No network can be purely neutral. If the current Internet didn't prioritize some traffic at the expense of other traffic, the whole enterprise would grind to a halt like Manhattan's streets when the stoplights stop working.

So the basic question here is who will set the Internet's priorities, the government or the providers. (Shafer)

Jack Shafer - Who's Internet is it Anyway?

Harsanyi - Save the Net; Abolish the FCC

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Grab their Guns and Shut them Up!

Why should it be more of a crime to threaten a politician than it is to threaten an ordinary citizen?

A threat is a threat, and all credible threats should be treated equally under the law regardless of who issues the threat or who is threatened.
"The president is a federal official," Brady told CNN in a telephone interview. "You can't do it to him; you should not be able to do it to a congressman, senator or federal judge." (The Hill)
You shouldn't be able to do it to anyone, congressman! A threat to my wife or a threat to Harry Reid; it doesn't matter. Both are criminal and should be punished.  This concept is a cornerstone of The Rule of Law. 

David Weigel at Slate explains better than I can why this is a bad idea.
Brady's proposed legislation is half unenforceable and half redundant. Threats against public officials are already illegal. A year ago, a Pennsylvania man was arrested because his interminable YouTube rants veered into threats against Eric Cantor, who's now the House majority leader.
Loughner didn't make any YouTube threats. (Slate)
Such proposed laws are really about controlling speech, but like gun control, the nuts and the criminals the law is directed at won't obey it anyway...
If someone like Jared Loughner wants to develop bizarre ideas about government based on obscure online theories—or based on nothing at all—no amount of civil dialogue will prevent it.  (Slate)
Here's the real agenda.

Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) suggested the Federal Communications Commission was "not working anymore," adding she would look at ways to better police language on the airwaves.  (The Hill-New Curbs)
Yes. All that criticism of failed, tired statist policies foisted upon us by a power-mad democratic party is getting out of hand. "Irresponsible speech" and free-thinking caused a turnover in the house of representatives and almost upturned the senate. We can't have that!
"What I'd like to see is if we could all get together on both sides of the aisle, Democrats and Republicans, and really talk about what we can do to cool down the country," Slaughter said.(The Hill-New Curbs)
Liberals want to cool down the criticism, take the heat off of themselves, their horrible agenda, and the multi-trillion dollar failures they have burdened us all with. "Cool down the country" means shut up criticism of liberalism and put off limits all this wild talk about shrinking our bloated, inefficient politburo-style government and the big fat Greek-style debt it has incurred. That's the kind of talk these failed statists in the Democratic party want to squelch.

To equate criticism of government with killing people is repulsive, but that's the stinking sewer liberals now find themselves mired in. They are completely repudiated and their policies discredited, so all they have left is to tell the country to shut up, and enforce their imperial mandate with the force of law.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Liberals Exploiting Death for Partisan Gain

Democratic Party 2011: Never let a bloody tragedy go to waste

Not one scintilla of evidence has yet been uncovered linking righwing rhetoric to the Arizona murders, but that hasn't stopped the rabid left from shamelessly exploiting death and tragedy for partisan political advantage. But the American people ain't buyin' it.  The Demagogic party is playing with fire, and they're going to get burned.

Of course, if fact and reason were their foundation, the Democratic party would have collapsed decades ago.

"They need to deftly pin this on the tea partiers," said the Democrat. "Just like the Clinton White House deftly pinned the Oklahoma City bombing on the militia and anti-government people." (Politico)
Leftwing America: A Nutball in every Pot, a Moonbat in every Belfry

The leftwing wackadoos won't let it go and never will, but these are the nutty nutballs that tune into red-faced ranter Ed Schultz and pompous gas bag Keith Olberman. Garbage in, garbage out. They call this killing spree "The Tea Party Massacre" and say stupid things like this:
"Sorry, Klanbaggers. You drew the crosshairs, and then you drew blood."
How pithy. People who take comfort in such low and shallow sentiments must really suffer poor self-esteem and a sense of uselessness, probably for good reason...

Even the sane ones can't give it up...
What I find more insidious and disheartening is what is going on in the saner corners of the left. Using their heads and being intellectually honest, there are good liberals who admit there is no connection between anyone on the right (or left for that matter) and the shooter. The nexus is just not there. The typical thinking liberal will concede that Palin and the tea parties are not to blame, then in the same breath go right back to subtly casting blame by condemning their rhetoric as "dangerous" and "irresponsible." I don't think most who do this are even conscious of the illogic of it. Here's a typical example:
I'm not sure which response has been worse: the 'Hey, we had nothing to do with it' hand washing of the right, or the irrational lynchmob attitude of the left (are they really comfortable blaming Palin for this, when there's not a shred of evidence that this guy was even slightly inspired by her?).
Even the more fair-minded liberals just can't let the right off the hook. They can't help wagging their fingers at us, attempting to hold us in some kind of suspended probation. They scold us even as they admit there is no evidence: "We know you weren't behind this, but we've got our eye on you!"

Lefties are Nostalgic for a more obedient America
Their purpose is to cast a dim light upon a conservatism that now attracts twice the voting populace that the tired, flaccid liberalism does. The left's only hope is to cast aspersions and stand us in ill-repute with our fellow citizens. They want to put us on notice, to hector and shame us, to stuff us back in a box we broke out of back in the 80's. Liberals sigh with nostalgia as they recall the day when an Eric Severeid or Walter Kronkite told America what to think. It's all so messy now, with all those noisy opinions flying around!

So they retreat to tired old talking points about handguns, civility, the fairness doctrine, speech codes... The only common denominator to these splintered and incoherent ramblings is a desire to snuff more liberties.

Shameless Exploitation is all the Left has left

Never letting a good tragedy go to waste, the left has hijacked this horrible incident to score cheap points. They follow up a senseless tragedy with a senseless spasm of stupidity and demagoguery. It is sickening and craven, and we need to press them on it. A full 57% of normal Americans disagree with the unhinged left, and reject the notion that rightwing tea party rhetoric had anything to do with this.

The left has lost, folks
They lost their sense of good governance years ago, they lost power last November, and now they are losing their minds. This is not a time for tea partiers to retreat or sit back and take it. Now is the time to press the attack on those deranged collectivist morons who so warp and twist the national debate. They've come unhinged, and they need to be held accountable for their irresponsible behavior. The truth is on our side, and so are the American people.

Here are some antidotes to the unhinged liberal rhetoric. Read them and use the information to throw it back in the faces of the hooting baboons on the left.  The true beauty of these links?  Half of them are from liberal publications, and they side with the conservatives.