Saturday, November 15, 2008

Call me when they close it....

Post-Guantánamo - A New Detention Law?

Of course, the President-Elect had nothing to do with it....

Mormons Tipped Scale in Ban on Gay Marriage
"As proponents of same-sex marriage across the country planned protests on Saturday against the ban, interviews with the main forces behind the ballot measure showed how close its backers believe it came to defeat — and the extraordinary role Mormons played in helping to pass it with money, institutional support and dedicated volunteers."

If you read it in the NY Times , it probably ain't so...

weighs in on the same article....

A potential victory for humanity...

Packages You Won’t Need a Saw to Open
"A number of retailers and manufacturers have a gift for holiday shoppers: product packaging that will not result in lacerations and stab wounds."

Friday, November 14, 2008

Uh, Oh....

"Here is Barack Obama in his own words on the definition of marriage," said the robo-call to Californians.:
"They heard Obama say: 'I believe marriage is a union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. God is in the mix.'"

Precisely the point

Obamania Nightmare

I've watched with growing distress this past week as many interesting cultural iconclasts I admire for various reasons who can usually be counted on to be aware and skeptical of government power to at least some degree, from John Perry Barlow to Adam Parfrey to Oliver Stone, have swooned over the mighty Obama and his world-changing powers (my misery over this is maximized by many friends and acquaintances who are not public figures as well).

Being surrounded by a creepy-happy adoring Cult of the Great Leader makes me...uncomfortable, to be sure. Via Will Wilkinson comes a particularly awful example of Obamania, in which we are advised via Beatles lyrics both of our responsibility to not let Obama down, and also showered with the adoring love we must express for him.

The joke is on the idiots that watch him...

How Keith Olbermann Stays Objective (No, Really)

What an odd man Keith Olbermann is. The Countdown host -- who just signed a new contract that will keep him at MSNBC through 2012 and nearly double his current $4 million-a-year salary -- was on The View today, where he reiterated a position he first took in 2004 that maybe, kinda made a little sense at the time but makes absolutely none now: He doesn't vote.

"It's a symbolic gesture," he told Joy Behar. "It's the only thing I can do that suggests even that I don't have a horse in the race."

That he could be considered a "journalist", or that people are stupid enough to watch him, is really beyond me. But, as PT Barnum said........

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Megan McArdle

Right to work :
"But whatever your feeling about government intervention in the economy, or the correct level of income inequality, I think there's one thing we can all agree on: for the world to get better, things that don't work have to fail. We cannot keep alive every company, every car and every job that someone once liked, because that way lies stagnation and death. Places where production decisions are made based on how much labor they can consume, rather than how much value they can produce, make everyone in society worse off in the long run."

Call the IRS...

NY Post Reviews 10 Celebrity Charities and Finds Eyebrow-Raising Business Practices

The New York Post reports that George Clooney, Bono, Wyclef Jean, Petra Nemcova and a half-dozen other celebrities have founded charities that have some eyebrow-raising business practices.

Jean's charity to help Haitians has allegedly failed to file tax returns for eight years. Bono's mega-foundation is reported to have chartered a plane to Africa and bought tickets for a U2 concert. Poker lover George Clooney allegedly took donations from a dubious online card-games company. And Giant Super Bowl hero Osi Umenyiora is reported to have dropped the ball when it comes to even registering his charity to benefit Africa and research into Alzheimer's disease.

Megan reminds us of "the Facts"

If we only had socialized medicine:
"I'm getting a lot of comments claiming that the real problem is the lack of universal health care in the US. How can GM and Ford possibly compete with German and Japanese companies whose employee healthcare is paid for by the government?

Well, you're right, they can't. That's because there are no German or Japanese auto companies whose employee healthcare is paid for by the government. Both countries have a government-regulated system of employer-provided healthcare."

GayPatriot has a legitimate question:

Where are the Grownups?

Yeah, I get why people are upset. But, what explains this childish behavior? Didn’t their mothers teach them to be kind to old people? Why this refusal to understand their opponents? Why this insistence on silencing them? Do such people deserve the privilege of state sanction of their unions?

Where are the gay organizations condemning such conduct?

The gay movement needs some adult supervision right now.

Damon Root:

Why libertarianism matters more than ever in Obama's America
"That's not the free market making life worse. It's the government."

It's only vote fraud if it benefits Republicans...

Mischief in Minnesota?

Well said... read it.

Jerry Pournelle:
"There was a time when there was enough freedom that it hardly mattered which brand of crooks ran government. That has not been true for a long time -- not during most of your lifetimes, and for much of mine -- and it will probably never be true again."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Megan gives us some decent analysis of Big Auto's troubles...

Labor's love lost
Management has made a lot of mistakes. But making big cars wasn't one of them. That's because they couldn't profitably make small cars in the United States. And the reason they couldn't is that their labor costs were too high. All in, Detroit was paying about $30 more an hour than other companies to make cars. At that kind of differential, you have to concentrate on large cars with big profit margins, not economy cars where consumers fight to save $15 on the headlight bezels.

It's hard to be against helping all of these folks - the workers that is; but the bottom line here is that labor and management conspired for years to the detriment of us. Should they be bailed out? And, certainly, a highly consolidated auto industry in this nation has got to come to pass - whether the unions like it or not. Sometimes you have to let the patient die, lest you wind-up with something that soaks up all of your resources down the line....


Joan Didion felt "unexpressable uneasiness" about the election.:
"I love the way a breath of stale air is a breath of fresh air."

This would be very nice.... if...

We Can Solve the Financial Crisis by Destroying OPEC

Now what can they figure out what to call us?

After U.S. Breakthrough, Europe Looks in Mirror
"In the general European euphoria over the election of Barack Obama, there is the beginning of self-reflection about Europe’s own troubles with racial integration. Many are asking if there could be a French, British, German or Italian Obama, and everyone knows the answer is no, not anytime soon."

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You mean, history isn't over?

Barack Obama's victory didn't magically eliminate America's problems and enemies
"The recognition of these obvious points should also alert us to a related danger, which is the cousinhood of euphoria and hysteria. Those who think that they have just voted to legalize Utopia (and I hardly exaggerate when I say this; have you been reading the moist and trusting comments of our commentariat?) are preparing for a disillusionment that I very much doubt they will blame on themselves. The national Treasury is an echoing, empty vault; our Russian and Iranian enemies are acting even more wolfishly even as they sense a repudiation of Bush-Cheney; the lines of jobless and evicted are going to lengthen, and I don't think a diet of hope is going to cover it. Nor even a diet of audacity, though can you picture anything less audacious than the gray, safety-first figures who have so far been chosen by Obama to be on his team?"

There is an element of the "wannabe" about all this—something that suggests that, if the clock were to be rolled back, every living white person would now automatically stand with John Brown at Harper's Ferry and with John Lewis at the Edmund Pettus Bridge. All the evidence we have is to the contrary: Abraham Lincoln ringingly denounced John Brown, and John F. Kennedy (he of the last young and pretty family to occupy the Executive Mansion) was embarrassed and annoyed by the March on Washington. In other words, there is something pain-free and self-congratulatory about the Obama surge. This has happened before, of course, with the high-sounding talk about the "New Frontier," the "Great Society," and "Morning in America." It's just that this time it's more than usually not affordable. There are many causes of the subprime and derivative horror show that has destroyed our trust in the idea of credit, but one way of defining it would be to say that everybody was promised everything, and almost everybody fell for the populist bait.

More worrying still, there are vicious enemies and rogue states in increasing positions of influence throughout the world (one of the episodes that most condemned the Republican campaign was its attempt to slander Sen. Joe Biden for his candid attempt to point this out), yet many Obama voters appear to believe that the mere charm and aspect of their new president will act as an emollient influence on these unwelcome facts and these hostile forces. I can't make myself perform this act of faith, and I won't put up with any innuendo about my inability to do so.

This is an issue we should do something about...

Fast Food: Just Another Name for Corn
"Chemical analysis from restaurants across the United States shows that nearly every cow or chicken used in fast food is raised on a diet of corn, prompting fresh criticism of the government's role in subsidizing poor eating habits."

Corn is central to agriculture in the United States, where it is grown in greater volumes and receives more government subsidies than any other crop. Between 1995 and 2006 corn growers received $56 billion in federal subsidies, and the annual figure may soon hit $10 billion.

Bad sign...

The return of Robert Malley
Robert Malley, a former Clinton official specializing in Middle Eastern affairs, was criticized during the recent Presidential campaign for being an anti-Israeli activist. Martin Peretz of the New Republic called him a “rabid hater of Israel. No question about it”.

...Today, Arutz Sheva reported that the man who would not “play any role in the future” was dispatched by the President elect to the Middle East to outline Obama’s policy in the Middle East.


Corporate Greed Runs Amok
"You'll never believe who's price-gouging."

Roger L. Simon: Make Steve Jobs CEO of GM....

Should we bail out big auto?:
"Seems as if Pelosi and Reid are hellbent on bailing out GM and other American auto companies. I’m of two minds about this and am trying to restrain my bias. It’s worth remembering that — just as Al Gore is finally irrelevant to the existence or not of anthropogenic global warming — just because Pelosi and Reid are for something, doesn’t mean you have to be against it. Again, they, like Gore, are irrelevant. Stick to the facts, as far as they can be ascertained."

Monday, November 10, 2008

But Al's a funny guy... so?

The Al Franken - Norm Coleman Senate Race Recount Update
It would be funny if Franken ends up losing the race just because he was unnecessarily rude to a college student. With the margins this close, that could arguably be the case. But the recount is still ongoing….

Well said... read it.

Warriors share stories of Iraq, Afghanistan
"'It's not the United States fighting this war; it's the American military fighting this war.'"

Megan wants to know....

Dorothy, get in the storm cellar! Open thread on belt-tightening
"So if you're like most of us in America, you're feeling a little it like . . . a Christian Scientist with appendicitis."

Funny, did anyone see any Muslims protesting the deaths of the poor 202 people that these jerks murdered?

Anger Erupts After Executions in Bali Blasts
"Meanwhile, at the site of the bombings, which killed 202 people, families of the victims gathered to lay wreaths and pray. Most of those killed were foreign tourists.

The three bombers — Mr. Samudra, Amrozi and Mukhlas, also known as Ali Ghufron — were executed early Sunday morning on a prison island off Java after years of delay because of government fears of a violent backlash."

Althouse has the same thoughts I did when I saw it...

The NYT identifies Jamie Gorelick as potentially Obama's pick for Attorney General
Unbelievably ponderous baggage! Oh, but conservatives have attacked her. Does that somehow cancel the baggage? A better question: Why haven't liberals attacked her?

Beldar seethes:
Short of appointing an actual member of al Qaeda, I cannot imagine a more offensive symbolic repudiation of the Global War on Terror — nor a more enthusiastic embrace of the chronic mismanagement, cronyism, and graft which led to this fall's credit crisis — than the appointment of Jamie Gorelick as attorney general.
I voted for Obama, as I'm sure my commenters are about to remind me, and I'm hoping for the best. He told me to hope! Please don't crush my hope so early, Mr. Obama
Patterico adds: Is this a joke? It has to be a joke.

You go, Radley....

Successful Pot Smokers: Let’s Make a List
The latest absurdity to come out of the Office of National Drug Control Policy is an anti-pot PR campaign with the motto, “Hey, not trying to be your mom, but there aren’t many jobs out there for potheads.”

Of course I bought Version 1.0....

Nov. 10, 1983: Gates Opens Windows a Bit Early

1983: Microsoft chief Bill Gates unveils the Windows operating system for PCs. Don't hold your breath waiting until you can buy a copy ... unless you can hold your breath for two years.

Gates, Microsoft's president and board chairman, held an elaborate event at New York City's posh Helmsley Palace Hotel. The debutante at this ball was an operating system with a graphical user interface.


Why Obama Should Copy Bush (Really!)

Stop snickering and just read the damn thing.

Via Instapundit... and something to closely watch

THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE CALLS ON OBAMA to keep his promise to keep Patrick Fitzgerald on as U.S. Attorney: "President-elect Barack Obama has said he'll keep Fitzgerald in the job, and we trust he'll keep his word. But Fitzgerald, who serves at the president's pleasure, has powerful enemies. They know that as his list of cooperating witnesses lengthens—convicted fundraiser Antoin "Tony" Rezko may be joining that club—so does his list of potential targets. Those with reason to fear Fitzgerald's breath on their necks would love to see him dumped—or promoted high into Justice Department oblivion—when Obama takes office. . . . The sooner Obama silences speculation about the possible replacement of Fitzgerald, the better for both men: Obama will show that he's a man of his word. And witnesses to corruption will know they aren't cooperating with prosecutors who might soon have a new boss."

Interesting video...

Man Arrested at Philly Obama Victory Rally for Wearing a McCain/Palin T-Shirt: "

And just like that, dissent is no longer the highest form of patriotism, but rather a jailable offense."

Important Stuff.... really

Google Signs a Deal to e-Publish Out-of-Print Books
"“Almost overnight, not only has the largest publishing deal been struck, but the largest bookshop in the world has been built, even if it is not quite open for business yet,” wrote Neill Denny, editor of The Bookseller, a trade publication based in London, on his blog."