I'm getting this out of the way early.
House: Republicans 227 Democrats 208 (Dems lose 48 seats)
Senate: Democrats 53 Republicans 47 (Dems lose 5 seats - and, yes, I'm not pretending the "independents" are actually independent.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
I'm getting this out of the way early.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
The disgraceful behavior of (so called) National (so called) Public Radio in firing one of its journalists for not being politically correct enough has shown anyone who ever doubted it that it simply cannot be saved. NPR rejects The Constitution and it's protections, specifically because NPR favors some Americans over others...thus I believe American have the right, or duty, to reject NPR.
In the wake of NPR's firing of contributor Juan Williams over comments about Muslims, Mike Huckabee is calling on the next Congress to cut the radio network's funding when it convenes next year.
"NPR has discredited itself as a forum for free speech and a protection of the First Amendment rights of all and has solidified itself as the purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left," Huckabee said in a statement provided to CNN.
Williams told Fox News host Bill O'Reilly on Monday that he gets "worried" and "nervous" on flights when he sees people wearing "Muslim garb." NPR terminated Williams' contract on Wednesday evening.
Huckabee said he "will no longer accept interview requests from NPR as long as they are going to practice a form of censorship, and since NPR is funded with public funds, it is a form of censorship."
I've never been a big fan of Gov. Huckabee, but he has it right here. I can only hope this acts as an additional rallying cry for centrists and conservatives as they go to the polls in a couple of weeks.
Really, I have just had it. I hope the Democrats get their asses handed to them in November. I'm tired of having to listen to the inanities of under-educated nitwits like Steve Benen who labor continuously under the misapprehension that they somehow constitute an "elite" who ought to be listened to. Listen up folks; you are not an elite. Real elites don't have "credentials," they have actual intellectual abilities; real elites just don't say they want a free exchange of ideas, they actually allow for such a free exchange without the threat of punishment for deviating from some preordained orthodoxy; real elites are smart enough to recognize the issues that matter to them may not be the same as what matters to people who actually work for a living; a real elite doesn't act as if their status as elites was dependent upon denigrating those who work for a living when they disagree with you; basically, a real elite would be everything the chattering left of today is not.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I've found something new to love: Republicans Kind of Suck … Which Is Why They Will Win Huge in November
[L]et’s look at what led us to the political situation we’re in. During the second term of the Bush presidency people just got fed up with Republicans. They were idiots, they were no good at the whole fiscal conservatism thing (which is sort of the whole point of them), we had these wars that seemed to be going nowhere, and the economy was beginning to fail. They sucked, and people were sick and tired of them.
Thus people turned to the Democrats. And Obama.
Let’s just say they also sucked.
AMERICANS: “So, the economy is pretty bad and there’s high employment. You think you can do something about that?”
DEMOCRATS AND OBAMA: “We can spend a trillion dollars we don’t have on pork and stuff.”
AMERICANS: “No … that’s not what we want. We’d really like you not to do that.”
DEMOCRATS: “You’re stupid. We’re doing it anyway.”
AMERICANS: “That’s not going to help us get jobs!”
DEMOCRATS: “Sure it will; millions of them … though they may be invisible. You’ll have to trust us they exist. And guess what else we’ll do: We’ll create a giant new government program to take over health care.”
AMERICANS: “That has nothing to do with jobs!”
DEMOCRATS: “We don’t care about that anymore. We really want a giant new health care program. We’re sure you’ll love it.”
AMERICANS: “Don’t pass that bill. You hear me? Absolutely do not pass that bill.”
DEMOCRATS: “Believe me; you’ll love it. It has … well, I don’t know what exactly is in the bill, but we’re sure it’s great.”
AMERICANS: “Listen to me: DO. NOT. PASS. THAT. BILL.”
DEMOCRATS: “You’re not the boss of me! We’re doing it anyway!”
AMERICANS: “Look what you did! Now the economy is way worse, we’re even deeper in debt, and we have a bunch of new laws we don’t want!”
DEMOCRATS: “You’re racist.”
AMERICANS: “Wha … How is that racist?”
DEMOCRATS: “Now you’re getting violent! Stop being violent and racist, you ignorant hillbillies! And remember to vote Democrat in November.”
So the Democrats sucked. But not just plain old, usual politician sucked, but epic levels of suck where it’s hard to find an analogue in human history that conveys the same level of suckitude. It was sheer incompetence plus arrogance — and those things do not complement each other well. We’re talking sucking that distorts time and space like a black hole.
It’s Godzilla-smashing-through-a-city level of suck — but a really patronizing Godzilla who says you’re just too stupid and hateful to see all the buildings he’s saved or created as he smashes everything apart. Or, to use Obama’s favorite analogy, you have a car stuck in ditch, so you call the mechanic, but the only tool he brings with him is a sledgehammer. And then he smashes your car to pieces and charges you $100,000 for his service. Finally, he calls you racist for complaining.
Yep. That sure sucks alright.
I swear to God I at first thought they were trying to be ironic in the following. It begins with the usual fevered ramblings from the New York Times: Secretive Republican Donors Are Planning Ahead
A secretive network of Republican donors is heading to the Palm Springs area for a long weekend in January, but it will not be to relax after a hard-fought election — it will be to plan for the next one.
Koch Industries, the longtime underwriter of libertarian causes from the Cato Institute in Washington to the ballot initiative that would suspend California’s landmark law capping greenhouse gases, is planning a confidential meeting at the Rancho Las Palmas Resort and Spa to, as an invitation says, “develop strategies to counter the most severe threats facing our free society and outline a vision of how we can foster a renewal of American free enterprise and prosperity.”
The invitation, sent to potential new participants, offers a rare peek at the Koch network of the ultrawealthy and the politically well-connected, its far-reaching agenda to enlist ordinary Americans to its cause, and its desire for the utmost secrecy.
Oh, good Lord. Not this crap again. It's bad enough that you have pinhead idiots like Alex Jones running around with conspiracy theories about how the Bilderbergers are going to enslave the planet (WARNING: Your IQ may drop 50 points if you click over and read that nonsense!), do we have to have the "paper of record" concoct a Republican only version of the same conspiracy theory?
Where is the irony? Well, the irony comes in when people who go in for the Republicans as Bildebergers conspiracy theory decry Republicans as conspiracy theorists for being Bildebergian.
It would be impossible to make up this stuff.
First, you have Yglesias bemoaning the "paranoid style" of the Koch brothers, supposedly because they say one of the reasons they want to confab is "...to review strategies for combating the multitude of public policies that threaten to destroy America as we know it." I'm assuming Yglesias has never received a fundraising letter from either the Republicans (ha!) or the Democrats. Such rhetoric is not unknown, it is positively ubiquitous. As such, the "paranoid style" (if that is what it is) should be recognized as what it is; namely, the way we do politics in a democratic society.
Or, you can read Chait in TNR wail:
I usually tend to think the liberals can be a little paranoid when they imagine that there's a cohesive elite of super-rich Republicans consciously pulling the strong of the political system.
As opposed to what exactly? Is Chait seriously trying to argue that Democrats never get together to discuss the best ways to win elections and influence the creation of public policy? What planet does he come from? On the planet I come from anyone who wants to succeed at politics thinks about it beforehand, and talks (conspires?) with others who hold similar goals and values.
But, maybe Chait is right and the Democrats really don't do this. This could be the explanation as to why their recent policy proposals have been, frankly, pretty awful. Perhaps they haven't thought about any of this beforehand and they are simply making it up as they go along.
Of course Chait knows the Democrats do this sort of thing. It's just that, for him, when Democrats do it they are acting responsibly. When Republicans do it, it is "the American social and financial elite [being] in thrall to insane conspiracy theories."
And, really, he wasn't trying to be ironic.
Monday, October 18, 2010
This blog has never been a friend of Ron Paul. We like it that way.
In one of the rare instances where visiting the sins of the father upon the son made sense, I could cheerfully dismiss the Rand Paul senate race. In fact, I was happy that I did not live in Kentucky so I could be far removed from the Paulian nonsense.
But what did the Democrat in the race do? He launched an attack on Paul so despicable that even I had to say "This is simply vicious and wrong." Hell, even Democrat Claire McCaskill called it "very dangerous." I'd like to think she didn't just mean in the sense that it risks backfiring badly. This year what I'd like to have happen pretty much never will.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
For all the hemming and hawing you hear about "rising" anti-Islamic crime in this country the reality is being Muslim in the United States is a picnic compared to being Jewish.
For the year 2008, the last we have data for, there were 1519 incidents of "hate crimes" committed against person(s) based upon their religion:
6.9% were directed towards Muslims;
8.6% were directed towards Christians;
0.9% were directed towards atheists/agnostics
66.7% were directed towards Jews.
Based upon the total number of adherents for the various faiths we can say that in 2008:
1 out of every 12,848 Muslims was the victim of a hate crime;
1 out of every 1,323,679 Christians was the victim of a hate crime;
1 out of every 257,571 atheists/agnostics was the victim of a hate crime;
1 out of every 2646 Jews was the victim of a hate crime;
It's funny how you never hear the left complaining about anti-Semitism, isn't it?
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
...but when prominent ones publish such nonsense I begin to doubt that belief:
Since 2004, the number of suicide attacks—whether within a country or transnational—has grown with shocking speed. Through a close analysis of suicide campaigns by Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Israel, Chechnya, and Sri Lanka, the authors provide powerful new evidence that, contrary to popular and dangerously mistaken belief, only a tiny minority of these attacks are motivated solely by religion. Instead, the root cause is foreign military occupation, which triggers secular and religious people alike to carry out suicide attacks.
So, here we have a hypothesis: military occupation causes suicide attacks.
So where have the United States been "occupiers" since 1900?
How many of these occupations resulted in suicide attacks against civilian populations? The answer seems to be zero.
Of course, there were other occupations. I wonder how those might be different?
Wikipedia lists the following countries has having experienced suicide attacks:
United States (9/11 attacks)
Now, Dr. Papes expects you to believe military occupation is the dominant similarity in the above list.
So, what is it that causes occupations in countries that just so happen to be Islamic to spawn suicide attacks, when occupations in the non-Islamic countries did not generate such attacks? Obviously, the prima facie case for Dr. Papes "hypothesis" is simply lacking.
Like I said, nonsense. Very stupid nonsense.
This is what happens when someone allows their ideological attachments to overwhelm reality, honesty and common sense.
Proving that the modern Left is almost entirely brain-dead, the usual suspects buy this crapola hook, line and sinker.
Given their ability to ignore evidence to keep their ideological preferences unchallenged, I believe it is fair to label the Lefties as positively anti-intellectual.
Monday, October 11, 2010
Evidently, the sky is orange in Paul Krugman's world:
Here’s the narrative you hear everywhere: President Obama has presided over a huge expansion of government, but unemployment has remained high. And this proves that government spending can’t create jobs.
Here’s what you need to know: The whole story is a myth. There never was a big expansion of government spending.
This is what is known in the real world as a lie.
For the 2009 budget (i.e. the last submitted by Bush) the total outlay of the Federal Budget was $3.1 trillion. For the first two years of the Obama administration the outlays were $3.6 trillion and $3.8 trillion. Thus, when compared to the baseline 2009 budget, the Obama administration spent an additional $1.2 trillion. Let's compare that with other two year periods since 1998 shall we? (data)
1998: $100 Million
1999: $100 Million
2000: $100 Million
2001: $300 Million
2002: $300 Million
2003: $400 Million
2004: $500 Million
2005: $300 Million
2006: $500 Million
2007: $700 Million
2008: $300 Million
2009: $500 Million
2010: $1.2 Trillion
2011: $1.2 Trillion
Thus I refute Krugman.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Here is what passes for civilized discourse for The Atlantic.
Really, how did American Judaism produce this vile, racist creature?
How did America produce someone as thoroughly pig ignorant and intolerant of political differences as Goldberg?
Actually, that isn't a rhetorical question. The Left in this country is as convinced of its moral superiority as any Robespierre or Lenin ever was. Disagreeing with them, they believe, is simply proof of your moral deviancy. Thus the name calling; thus the attempts to punish thought and speech they don't care for; thus the non-stop campaigns to demonize and marginalize.
In every sense it is illiberal. Unfortunately, we now live in an age where a 140 character tweet is deemed sufficient space to issue one's opinion on the value and worth of another human being.
Saturday, October 09, 2010
This is a letter from Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara, Hal Lewis to the American Physical Society:
From: Hal Lewis, University of California, Santa Barbara
To: Curtis G. Callan, Jr., Princeton University, President of the American Physical Society
6 October 2010
When I first joined the American Physical Society sixty-seven years ago it was much smaller, much gentler, and as yet uncorrupted by the money flood (a threat against which Dwight Eisenhower warned a half-century ago).
Indeed, the choice of physics as a profession was then a guarantor of a life of poverty and abstinence—it was World War II that changed all that. The prospect of worldly gain drove few physicists. As recently as thirty-five years ago, when I chaired the first APS study of a contentious social/scientific issue, The Reactor Safety Study, though there were zealots aplenty on the outside there was no hint of inordinate pressure on us as physicists. We were therefore able to produce what I believe was and is an honest appraisal of the situation at that time. We were further enabled by the presence of an oversight committee consisting of Pief Panofsky, Vicki Weisskopf, and Hans Bethe, all towering physicists beyond reproach. I was proud of what we did in a charged atmosphere. In the end the oversight committee, in its report to the APS President, noted the complete independence in which we did the job, and predicted that the report would be attacked from both sides. What greater tribute could there be?
How different it is now. The giants no longer walk the earth, and the money flood has become the raison d’être of much physics research, the vital sustenance of much more, and it provides the support for untold numbers of professional jobs. For reasons that will soon become clear my former pride at being an APS Fellow all these years has been turned into shame, and I am forced, with no pleasure at all, to offer you my resignation from the Society.
It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.) I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.
So what has the APS, as an organization, done in the face of this challenge? It has accepted the corruption as the norm, and gone along with it. For example:
1. About a year ago a few of us sent an e-mail on the subject to a fraction of the membership. APS ignored the issues, but the then President immediately launched a hostile investigation of where we got the e-mail addresses. In its better days, APS used to encourage discussion of important issues, and indeed the Constitution cites that as its principal purpose. No more. Everything that has been done in the last year has been designed to silence debate
2. The appallingly tendentious APS statement on Climate Change was apparently written in a hurry by a few people over lunch, and is certainly not representative of the talents of APS members as I have long known them. So a few of us petitioned the Council to reconsider it. One of the outstanding marks of (in)distinction in the Statement was the poison word incontrovertible, which describes few items in physics, certainly not this one. In response APS appointed a secret committee that never met, never troubled to speak to any skeptics, yet endorsed the Statement in its entirety. (They did admit that the tone was a bit strong, but amazingly kept the poison word incontrovertible to describe the evidence, a position supported by no one.) In the end, the Council kept the original statement, word for word, but approved a far longer “explanatory” screed, admitting that there were uncertainties, but brushing them aside to give blanket approval to the original. The original Statement, which still stands as the APS position, also contains what I consider pompous and asinine advice to all world governments, as if the APS were master of the universe. It is not, and I am embarrassed that our leaders seem to think it is. This is not fun and games, these are serious matters involving vast fractions of our national substance, and the reputation of the Society as a scientific society is at stake.
3. In the interim the ClimateGate scandal broke into the news, and the machinations of the principal alarmists were revealed to the world. It was a fraud on a scale I have never seen, and I lack the words to describe its enormity. Effect on the APS position: none. None at all. This is not science; other forces are at work.
4. So a few of us tried to bring science into the act (that is, after all, the alleged and historic purpose of APS), and collected the necessary 200+ signatures to bring to the Council a proposal for a Topical Group on Climate Science, thinking that open discussion of the scientific issues, in the best tradition of physics, would be beneficial to all, and also a contribution to the nation. I might note that it was not easy to collect the signatures, since you denied us the use of the APS membership list. We conformed in every way with the requirements of the APS Constitution, and described in great detail what we had in mind—simply to bring the subject into the open.
5. To our amazement, Constitution be damned, you declined to accept our petition, but instead used your own control of the mailing list to run a poll on the members’ interest in a TG on Climate and the Environment. You did ask the members if they would sign a petition to form a TG on your yet-to-be-defined subject, but provided no petition, and got lots of affirmative responses. (If you had asked about sex you would have gotten more expressions of interest.) There was of course no such petition or proposal, and you have now dropped the Environment part, so the whole matter is moot. (Any lawyer will tell you that you cannot collect signatures on a vague petition, and then fill in whatever you like.) The entire purpose of this exercise was to avoid your constitutional responsibility to take our petition to the Council.
6. As of now you have formed still another secret and stacked committee to organize your own TG, simply ignoring our lawful petition.
APS management has gamed the problem from the beginning, to suppress serious conversation about the merits of the climate change claims. Do you wonder that I have lost confidence in the organization?
I do feel the need to add one note, and this is conjecture, since it is always risky to discuss other people’s motives. This scheming at APS HQ is so bizarre that there cannot be a simple explanation for it. Some have held that the physicists of today are not as smart as they used to be, but I don’t think that is an issue. I think it is the money, exactly what Eisenhower warned about a half-century ago. There are indeed trillions of dollars involved, to say nothing of the fame and glory (and frequent trips to exotic islands) that go with being a member of the club. Your own Physics Department (of which you are chairman) would lose millions a year if the global warming bubble burst. When Penn State absolved Mike Mann of wrongdoing, and the University of East Anglia did the same for Phil Jones, they cannot have been unaware of the financial penalty for doing otherwise. As the old saying goes, you don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing. Since I am no philosopher, I’m not going to explore at just which point enlightened self-interest crosses the line into corruption, but a careful reading of the ClimateGate releases makes it clear that this is not an academic question.
I want no part of it, so please accept my resignation. APS no longer represents me, but I hope we are still friends.
WUWT calls this "on the scale of Martin Luther, nailing his 95 theses to the Wittenburg church door."
We should be so lucky.
Democrats and their journalist familiars have a new way to scare Americans. Republicans have unusual hobbies! Why is This GOP House Candidate Dressed as a Nazi?
An election year already notable for its menagerie of extreme and unusual candidates can add another one: Rich Iott, the Republican nominee for Congress from Ohio's 9th District, and a Tea Party favorite, who for years donned a German Waffen SS uniform and participated in Nazi re-enactments.
OMG! An historical re-enactor! Run for the hills! You might learn something!
And don't think this is anything other than that. Buried in the story, way beneath reminding people that the Nazi were really bad - where would we be without journalists to remind us of that? - we read:
In a follow-up email today, Iott seemed at pains to address concerns that his conduct may have alienated veterans groups but made no specific mention of possible offense to Jews or human rights groups: "Never, in any of my reenacting of military history, have I meant any disrespect to anyone who served in our military or anyone who has been affected by the tragedy of war. In fact, I have immense respect for veterans who served our country valiantly, and my respect of the military and our veterans is one of the reasons I have actively studied military history throughout my life." He added that he has participated in re-enactments as a Civil War Union infantryman, a World War I dough boy and World War II American infantryman and paratrooper.
God only knows what the author of this piece, one Joshua Green, is smoking if he believes veterans are "upset" with re-enactors. Which kinda reinforces just how, frankly, stupid he is. After all, the closest he seems to have ever been to the military is his work on The Onion. Trust me Joshua, the kinds of people veterans really have no respect for are journalists like yourself who, presumably because of the multitude of paper cuts they have received in their editorial duties, believe they can speak for them.
I spent three years working at an historical park which attracted a lot of veterans, and not a few number of re-enactors doing Civil War and World War II events. Believe it or not when they performed a WWII era assault they had enemy Nazis they "attacked." Maybe Mr. Green is so ignorant about the conditions of war he believes a re-enacted battle could be held with participants from one side only. (When you come across something this moronic anything is possible I guess.) In any event, the re-enactment attracted lots of WWII vets and not one of them complained about the presence of German re-enactors. I guess its too bad Joshua Green wasn't around to tell them how they were supposed to feel.
I'll cheerfully admit re-enactors and other amateur historian types who really get into this stuff are a little odd. Anyone who ever read Tony Horwitz's fantastic book Confederates In The Attic knows that. Some of them are downright nut jobs. But so are some members of Congress. The guy who had an entire German Panzer division in miniature, which was set up in an exhibit room at the park, was not your average Joe to be sure. However, the exhibit itself attracted hundreds of vets who were interested in seeing that. Maybe Green thinks they too are secret Nazis?
Maybe I am too! After all, I can see wargames in the closet behind me. I have played the Nazi side countless times! So I must have fascist sympathies, right?
It gets worse then that! I've played the USSR side too, so I must also have commie sympathies. I've also played the British in Revolutionary War games, so I'm a Benedict Arnold as well; I've played the Confederate side in many a game, so chalk me up for a racist as well. Hell, I've even played the Saruman side in the Battle of Helm's Deep. Just how evil can one sonofabitch be!!??
BTW: Althouse points out that Green, in addition to being a nitwit, is also an unethical journalist.
Thursday, October 07, 2010
Paul Krugman has his panties in a wad again: Tunnel Of Idiocy
Many reports that Chris Christie is about to scuttle the second rail tunnel under the Hudson. If so, it’s arguably the worst policy decision ever made by the government of New Jersey — and that’s saying a lot.
The story seems to be that Christie wants to divert the funds to road and bridge repair; but in so doing he would (a) lose huge matching funds from the Port Authority and the Feds (b) delay indefinitely a project NJ needs desperately ASAP. He could avoid these consequences by raising gasoline taxes. But no, taxes must never be raised, no matter what the tradeoffs.
Oh, I see. When the project in question affects New Jersey commuters like Paul Krugman who wish to zip into Manhattan to lead their oh so important lives, it comes down to a matter of tradeoffs; tradeoffs that should not include, evidently, the economic feasibility of the project itself. "What is 8 billion dollar when Paul Krugman could potentially save 15 minutes in traffic??"
Of course, when the project involved runs up against potential (if almost imaginary) environmental concerns favored by Democrats, well, tradeoffs be damned! There are snails or slugs or amoebas to save! And no amount of jobs, economic development, or benefit to the public good is enough to tip the balance. Plus, you never read a Krugman column bemoaning the situation.
But then, replacing a decrepit lift bridge in Stillwater, Minnesota wouldn't do anything to shorten Paul Krugman's commute. So screw 'em.
Tuesday, October 05, 2010
More on the Tennessee house fire. From HotAir:
I’m guessing 95 percent of our commenters will say, “Right on, let it burn. A contract’s a contract!” And yet 95 percent of those same people, upon finding themselves at the scene with a hose and a truck full of water, would have done the moral thing and tried to put it out notwithstanding the free-rider problem created by the Cranicks.
This is nonsense on stilts. I have no moral obligation to protect the property of others. If I see a neighbor's car being stolen I am under no obligation try to stop it. I do have a duty to report crimes to the police, but if the car gets destroyed before the cops arrive that does not mean I've failed a moral obligation.
If you want your personal property protected then it is incumbent upon you to provide for said protection. Period.
The homeowner in this case played roulette with his home and lost. And he (now) knows it.
“I thought they’d come out and put it out, even if you hadn’t paid your $75, but I was wrong,” said Gene Cranick.
So, if the Cranick family is now impoverished because of this fire (and I haven't even heard if he bothered to pay for insurance), there is only one person to blame and it isn't the firefighters.
Conservatives will often claim they want to live in a society where people are expected and encouraged to look after themselves, but if that is to mean anything it has to mean that people will bear the consequences for their foolish choices. "Protecting" people from their choices isn't treating them like adults, its treating them like children. Bailing everyone out only encourages more people to act irresponsibly. It is the slow path to infantilizing a nation.
Monday, October 04, 2010
And remember, the Left are supposed to be the "smart" ones:
As ThinkProgress reported earlier this morning, South Fulton firefighters from Obion, Tennessee, last week stood by and watched as a family’s home burned down because their services were available by subscription only, and the family had not paid the $75 fee. As ThinkProgress noted, the case perfectly demonstrated conservative ideology, which is based around the idea of the on-your-own society and informs a policy agenda that primarily serves the well-off and privileged.
We are not talking about thousands of dollars here. We are talking about $75. You do not have to be "well-off" to afford yearly fire protection for $75. That comes to under 20 cents a day. And why didn't the family buy the protection? The same reason lots of people would do the same. They A) didn't expect to have a fire (i.e. they exhibited rank stupidity), and B) they thought if they ever did have a fire they would be protected anyway; in effect they believed other people would pay for their fire protection.
I'm sorry, but sometimes bad things happen to moronic people. Why are we all supposed to pick up the bill to bail them out?
Unfortunately, we live in a society where too many people seems to believe they are "too big to fail." I hate to break it to them, but that simply is not true.
If you got some time on your hand read the following links in order:
I believe this exercise will demonstrate the difference between intellectual honesty and charlatanism.
Choose your side carefully.
Saturday, October 02, 2010
Palin's counter-snobbery holds those who live in the middle of the country, own guns, and go to church are more authentic, more the "real America," than those who live in coastal cities, profess atheism, or prefer a less demonstrative style of patriotism. But the insistence that gay people not be married, or that some go without health insurance, or that gas be lightly taxed, reflect choices about "how other people should live" no less than the opposite positions. Gingrich and others cast democratic decisions as illegitimate only when they conflict with right-wing ideology. If an unelected judge upholds gay marriage, he's practicing liberal elitism. But if the same unelected judge were to invalidate Obama's health care legislation, he would be defending the Constitution. Such hypocrisy is based on the construct of a pre-political state of nature, where we lived in abstract freedom until government arrived to limit and control us.
Thus Weisberg's "argument" boils down to "You cannot call me an elitist because I'm smarter than Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and all of the Founders." Yeah. That'll work, if you are an idiot.
So, if Weisberg rejects the political theory which grants individual and inalienable rights (i.e. the political theory underlying American government), I wonder what he replaces it with?