Thursday, November 21, 2013

The weakening of the filibuster

I admit, I am no expert on Senate rules, but does it seem odd that the rules on the number of filibuster votes (60) can be changed by a simple majority (51)?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/11/21/heres-the-nuclear-option-debate-explained-in-two-charts/

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The subterfuge of the fundamental rights argument

Obamacare is justified by the claim that healthcare is a fundamental right. Is it curious to anyone that with the implementation of the law we now have less access to healthcare and what access we do have is more expensive? Not to mention that the quality of the healthcare we can get access to is not a point that consumers can do much about.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

"Anecdote, the age-old enemy of logic . . . "

If I had to pick a favorite passage from Victor Davis Hanson's column today, this would probably be it, but whole thing is spot on:
Anecdote, the age-old enemy of logic, now reigns supreme and trumps induction —  as if the exception is always proof of the rule, as if the public will always forsake reason for emotion. Forget the statistics on Obamacare — my Uncle Joe was denied coverage after he lost his job. The economy is getting better, because my friend Will was offered a job today. Why enforce federal immigration law, when there is no nicer window washer than Herlinda, who comes to my house every Tuesday? It hailed in June here; therefore the world must be experiencing climate change. I would never shoot an AR-15, and therefore there is no need for anyone else to. My nephew is gay, and he’s a great guy; therefore gay marriage is great too. Sally yesterday lifted heavier weights than did three guys in the gym: Presto, female soldiers can do anything that male soldiers can.

Friday, April 12, 2013

The DiploMad 2.0: Another Great One Leaves the Scene: Margaret Thatc...

From a favorite blogger of mine:
The DiploMad 2.0: Another Great One Leaves the Scene: Margaret Thatc...: It is hard to write about Margaret Thatcher. Her accomplishments were so many and so truly stunning that one can only stand in awe. All of u...

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Guess who?

I went to a party in Williamsburg, where I definitely do not live, and was 50 percent older than anyone else. When I told a gentleman that I am 45, he was shocked. 

Sorry, but I think she looks her age.

Want more of her brilliance? Can you handle it?
I live with a wolf and a panther—actually, a dog and a cat, both black, both very wild, it's better that way. I am interested. I am interested in everything, except the things that aren't interesting, which is too much lately. 
And still, I read the whole thing!!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Why gun education is kinda important

Congresswomen Diana DeGette (D-CO), lead sponsor of a high capacity magazine ban does not have working knowledge of what she wants to ban. Is it too much to ask that she familiarize herself with the subject area?
Asked how a ban on magazines holding more than 15 rounds would be effective in reducing gun violence, DeGette said:
“I will tell you these are ammunition, they’re bullets, so the people who have those now they’re going to shoot them, so if you ban them in the future, the number of these high capacity magazines is going to decrease dramatically over time because the bullets will have been shot and there won’t be any more available.”

2 more women fail IOC

The Marine Corps' Infantry Officer Course lost its two women candidates this cycle (it lost two others last fall): 
The women failed the introductory Combat Endurance Test, a punishing test of physical strength and endurance, officials at Marine Corps headquarters said Tuesday. The latest class began March 28 at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., with 110 lieutenants participating. Ninety-six men passed the initial endurance test. Twelve men and two women — the only female Marines taking part — failed.
Keep in mind that the women who volunteered for this would absolutely be the most stellar of their female Marine officer peers, and their peers aren't too shabby either.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Sanford wins run-off. South Carolina, how pathetic.

Some Hot Air commentary on Sanford v. Bostic.

Numbers from AP:
April 02, 2013 - 09:04PM ET(i) = incumbent
= winner
= runoff
U.S. House - District 1 - GOP Runoff
CountyPrecinctsC. Bostic
(GOP)
M. Sanford
(GOP)
Total315/31719,944
43%
25,978
57%
Beaufort80/805,573
52%
5,091
48%
Berkeley44/443,923
43%
5,267
57%
Charleston131/1337,294
39%
11,299
61%
Colleton1/179
41%
113
59%
Dorchester59/593,075
42%
4,208
58%

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

I wish they would ask this question at the Supreme Court:

With government recognition of same-sex marriage, what's to stop this type of relationship from becoming a marriage, and reaping the governmental benefits of marriage? And if it does, is that a good or bad thing for society?
One group of women sold their homes and bought a house together in Mount Lebanon, Pa., after they all got divorced. “It made amazing economic sense,” said one of the women, Jean McQuillin. McQuillin, Louise Machinist and Karen Bush call their home a “cooperative household.” Each woman has her own bedroom and bathroom, and they share the common areas of the house, chores and expenses.
If these women got married they could make even more economic sense. Does this then dilute the meaning of marriage? There is no law that you have to love each other (though that is the premise), there is no mandate to produce children, and who's going to check if you actually have sex? Now, you could easily say that this same mutation of marriage could happen between heterosexual, but platonic, couples as well. I am sure it already does happen but to a very small extent, but it's not the norm or even a recognized minority, and this aberration/alteration posited above seems much more likely to be the main thing that comes out of same-sex marriage. Possibly even more so than actual homosexual people joining the ranks of the married population.

In other words, although same-sex marriage is put forth as being every bit the same as heterosexual marriage except for the gender of the parties, its existence somehow much more freely opens the door to relationships that will not involve the same emotional devotion of marriage, and yet can benefit from the institution of marriage. Is that good public policy?

"Break the Brain-Chains"

Amen to Zo for this video-crystal clear analysis if you are willing to listen.

Say No to Me-Too Politics


Thomas Sowell discusses the RNC's "Growth and Opportunity Project" report, and once again gets it so right:
They propose going through such organizations as the NAACP to reach black voters, as if the NAACP owns blacks, in violation of the 13th Amendment. Not only is the NAACP virtually a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic party, but the kind of black voters that the Republicans have some hope of winning over are unlikely to be enthralled to the NAACP, and many of them may see through such race hustling. Or do all blacks look alike to those who wrote this report?
It is the same story with Hispanics and Asian-Americans. The Republicans are supposed to go through these groups’ “leaders” as well — mostly leaders tied to the Democratic party, ideologically or otherwise. You might think that a Republican party that talks about individualism would try to appeal to individuals.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Cuomo is going to roll back the NY ban on magazines over 10 rounds.


Realizing most magazines carry more than 10 rounds . . . Seems like these things would have been discovered before a law was signed!
Speaking on March 20, Cuomo said the state needs to allow the sale of handgun and rifle magazines that hold 10 rounds, "but New Yorkers will still be required to keep no more than seven bullets in them."
Because that is so enforceable. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

History repeats itself, even in party politics

This, from a review of the similarities between post-campaign autopsies of 1945 and 2013:
Youth has been one of the key groups RNC chairman Reince Priebus has targeted for the 2016 election. The RNC report states: “Young voters are increasingly rolling their eyes at what the Party represents.” Brownell’s GOP had the same problem. The 1945 report claimed: “The Republicans have been the minority party for twelve years. They have lost appeal to youth. They must find fresh, vigorous, righteous appeals to recruit youth, or their long-term outlook is bearish.”
More here.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Reince Priebus is a wimp

To heck with inclusiveness and tailoring a message for low information voters. I like this advice:
Fight. Fight them on every front, fight them in every state, fight them on television and in print and on the airwaves. Confront them at every opportunity, seek out and embrace conflict, and fear not bullies .... Don’t make nice with them, don’t play fair with them, don’t reach across the aisle and above all, treat them and their ideas with exactly the same amount of respect with which they treat yours: none. Contempt is the only language they understand.
Refreshing. Lots more at the link.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Conversations we do not have

How do you treat people of a different race on a daily basis? From Being White in Philadelphia:
On one level, such self-consciousness and hypersensitivity can be seen as progress when it comes to race, a sign of how much attitudes have shifted for the better, a symbol of our desire for things to be better. And yet, lately I’ve come to fear that the opposite might also be true: that our carefulness is, in fact, at the heart of the problem.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Pope Francis

The new Pope, Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina, is known as a humble man, who works behind the scenes for those in need. He visits slums, and shunned the fancy trappings of power that could be his as the top Buenos Aires cardinal. He has spoken out against liberal policies implemented by Argentine President Kirchner, to include gay marriage, abortion, and free contraception. However, he considers outreach the main work of the church, and his words here illustrate this belief:
“In our ecclesiastical region there are priests who don’t baptize the children of single mothers because they weren’t conceived in the sanctity of marriage,” Bergoglio told his priests. “These are today’s hypocrites. Those who clericalize the Church. Those who separate the people of God from salvation. And this poor girl who, rather than returning the child to sender, had the courage to carry it into the world, must wander from parish to parish so that it’s baptized!”
Read more about Pope Francis here.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Opt out of Common Core

More info at Michelle Malkin:
Courtesy of Truth in American Education, you can now exercise your parental rights to protect your children from the nationalized Common Core racket. Download, print, Facebook, tweet, and share the opt-out form. The revolt is growing. Make your voice and your choice heard.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

War in the House

Conservative Congressmen are bucking Boehner's government funding bill because he and his team have refused to hear an amendment to defund Obamacare. The defection is shaking up the House, but I don't think this move by the Establishment will be very popular:
Instead, House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said on Sunday that he would be open to ramming through bills without the support of a majority of his own Republican caucus. Not just on small bills. On issues like immigration and gun control, McCarthy said, he’d be open to taking rogue Republicans across the aisle to work with Democrats.

Emerging Republican Leader: Rand Paul?

“The filibuster is the single largest leap I can recall from one act,” said Dave Carney, a New Hampshire-based GOP strategist who served as a senior adviser for Rick Perry’s 2012 presidential bid. “The old guard’s gratuitous and meaningless tantrum attack the next day further solidified his sole position as leader of the new right.”

Saturday, March 9, 2013

"We will either revamp our institutions, or we will become Argentina."


From a very long essay on a "Constitutional Moment" - we are in one. We face problems remarkably similar to our young nation after the Revolutionary War. Most prominent of those is debt, but the writer calls for institutional reform. That may only happen when institutions are near collapse.

"That danger is very real. While we like to tell ourselves that all our constitutional stories must have a happy ending, constitutional moments are easily missed. The fear is palpable in The Federalist: Publius’s essays resound with do-or-die, now-or-never admonition. The Founders rose to the occasion.We may not: our politics may be too pathological, our circumstances too dire, our spirit too soft to seize the moment. However, there is no reward in a “how-do-you-feel-about-the-future” thumb sucker."

Thursday, March 7, 2013

21. Bastiat ~ The Choice Before Us



Frederic Bastiat was a French economist and statesman. During and after the Revolution in 1848, he warned of the inevitable degeneration of socialism into communism in The LawPrevious Bastiat posts can be found here.

From The Law


This question of legal plunder must be settled once and for all, and there are only three ways to settle it:
  1. The few plunder the many.
  2. Everybody plunders everybody.
  3. Nobody plunders anybody.
We must make our choice among limited plunder, universal plunder, and no plunder. The law can follow only one of these three. 

Limited legal plunder: This system prevailed when the right to vote was restricted. One would turn back to this system to prevent the invasion of socialism.

Universal legal plunder: We have been threatened with this system since the franchise was made universal. The newly enfranchised majority has decided to formulate law on the same principle of legal plunder that was used by their predecessors when the vote was limited.
 
No legal plunder: This is the principle of justice, peace, order, stability, harmony, and logic. Until the day of my death, I shall proclaim this principle with all the force of my lungs (which alas! is all too inadequate).

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Filibuster, 8 hours in right now!

Rand Paul is making filibuster history:
"If there was an ounce of courage in this body I would be joined by many other Senators," Sen. Paul said. "Would you tolerate a Republican who said I like the first amendment, I don't plan to violate the first amendment, but I might," he asked rhetorically. He then turned the question around and asked if Republicans would tolerate that sort of vaguery with regard to the 2nd amendment.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

19. & 20. Bastiat ~ Legal Plunder Has Many Names & Socialism Is Legal Plunder



Frederic Bastiat was a French economist and statesman. During and after the Revolution in 1848, he warned of the inevitable degeneration of socialism into communism in The LawPrevious Bastiat posts can be found here.

From The Law


Now, legal plunder can be committed in an infinite number of ways. Thus we have an infinite number of plans for organizing it: tariffs, protection, benefits, subsidies, encouragements, progressive taxation, public schools, guaranteed jobs, guaranteed profits, minimum wages, a right to relief, a right to the tools of labor, free credit, and so on, and so on. All these plans as a whole — with their common aim of legal plunder — constitute socialism. 

Now, since under this definition socialism is a body of doctrine, what attack can be made against it other than a war of doctrine? If you find this socialistic doctrine to be false, absurd, and evil, then refute it. And the more false, the more absurd, and the more evil it is, the easier it will be to refute. Above all, if you wish to be strong, begin by rooting out every particle of socialism that may have crept into your legislation. This will be no light task. 

***

Mr. de Montalembert has been accused of desiring to fight socialism by the use of brute force. He ought to be exonerated from this accusation, for he has plainly said: "The war that we must fight against socialism must be in harmony with law, honor, and justice." 

But why does not Mr. de Montalembert see that he has placed himself in a vicious circle? You would use the law to oppose socialism? But it is upon the law that socialism itself relies. Socialists desire to practice legal plunder, not illegal plunder. Socialists, like all other monopolists, desire to make the law their own weapon. And when once the law is on the side of socialism, how can it be used against socialism? For when plunder is abetted by the law, it does not fear your courts, your gendarmes, and your prisons. Rather, it may call upon them for help. 

To prevent this, you would exclude socialism from entering into the making of laws? You would prevent socialists from entering the Legislative Palace? You shall not succeed, I predict, so long as legal plunder continues to be the main business of the legislature. It is illogical — in fact, absurd — to assume otherwise.

Friday, March 1, 2013

"I am the President."

"I am not a crook dictator."

Breitbart

One year ago, the Happy Warrior left us. But his vision still lives:


Thursday, February 28, 2013

Just when you thought Joe Biden couldn't get any dumber...

This is arguably not even the stupidest statement the VP made in an interview with Field & Stream, but since it builds on yesterday's post's idiocy, I will highlight it here:
I said, “Well, you know, my shotgun will do better for you than your AR-15, because you want to keep someone away from your house, just fire the shotgun through the door.” Most people can handle a shotgun a hell of a lot better than they can a semiautomatic weapon in terms of both their aim and in terms of their ability to deter people coming. We can argue whether that’s true or not, but it is no argument that, for example, a shotgun could do the same job of protecting you. Now, granted, you can come back and say, “Well, a machine gun could do a better job of protecting me.” No one’s arguing we should make machine guns legal.
Right. Tell that to Oscar Pistorius.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Counterculture on the rise?

Following Obama's reelection, it finally sank in that my political views were in the minority. Surprisingly, rather than feeling defeated, I felt liberated. I no longer felt I had to defend the power structure, upon which reasonable people were successfully identifying areas where it was becoming intrusive on individual freedoms, and straying from model conservatism. While this liberation has not fully manifested itself in an "out and in your face" way, I feel much less uncomfortable expressing my views because I am only representing myself. I do not have to defend anyone or anything that may betray me, and undermine my own meticulously guarded credibility. There is no earthly personification of the philosophy now, there is only idealism of the ideology, and that is unassailable. It cannot be killed or destroyed or tainted. It is an idea, and ideas are immortal. Rebellion lives on ideas, and ideals.

The Obama administration is overbearing and intrusive. If the counterculture is true to its origin, the scene is primed for a great revolution. 
With the re-election of Barack Obama, conservatism has become the new counterculture—particularly among young adults. Think about it. Throughout history, youth have always been distrusting of any kind of authority. It’s just their nature. In the 1960s, we had the hippies and the New Left rejecting the system and “sticking it to the man.” In the 1970s, young voters led the demand for the impeachment of Tricky Dick over Watergate. . . . [T]he “counterculture,” . . . is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a culture with values and mores that run counter to those of established society.” That’s where conservatism comes in, without all the defecating in public and Guy Fawkes masks, of course.
Young conservatives and libertarians are much more radical in their opposition to “the establishment” than their liberal counterparts. It’s not a flashy, in-your-face opposition—but rather a stealthy steadfastness in the rejection of their peers’ complete faith in government. In this second term of Obama, the preservation of individual freedom has become a “radical” cause for the new counterculture.

Monday, February 25, 2013

The sequester only means we won't spend AS MUCH! Let it happen.

There's a lot of misinformation going around. I am not an expert at governmental spending, budgeting or anything else financial, but I do know that the spending of the federal government grows every year BY DESIGN. Every year, it factors in projected increases. So when lawmakers tell us they made cuts, it is NEVER to levels that were BELOW the previous year's spending. It is always to projected INCREASED spending. For example, if they agree to cut spending, instead of spending 8% more per year, they will just spend 6%. I am making those numbers up to illustrate the fact that spending always increases. The only thing they argue about is just how much it will increase.  It's really disgusting that we keep being fed this misleading information. Here's an illustration of just how little the sequester cuts are compared to all the other spending.

Dan Mitchell, Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute:
[A] sequester merely means that spending climbs by $2.4 trillion over the next 10 years rather than $2.5 trillion. . . . here are the actual numbers from the Congressional Budget Office showing what will happen to spending over the next 10 years if we have a sequester:

Sunday, February 24, 2013

This will make you smile

Dog tricks show the amazing connection between a girl and her dog.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

18. Bastiat ~ How to Identify Legal Plunder

Frederic Bastiat was a French economist and statesman. During and after the Revolution in 1848, he warned of the inevitable degeneration of socialism into communism in The LawPrevious Bastiat posts can be found here.

From The Law

But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.

Then abolish this law without delay, for it is not only an evil itself, but also it is a fertile source for further evils because it invites reprisals. If such a law — which may be an isolated case — is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system.

The person who profits from this law will complain bitterly, defending his acquired rights. He will claim that the state is obligated to protect and encourage his particular industry; that this procedure enriches the state because the protected industry is thus able to spend more and to pay higher wages to the poor workingmen.
 
Do not listen to this sophistry by vested interests. The acceptance of these arguments will build legal plunder into a whole system. In fact, this has already occurred. The present-day delusion is an attempt to enrich everyone at the expense of everyone else; to make plunder universal under the pretense of organizing it.