Saturday, January 31, 2009

Who could forget!!

This Bowl Made Them Super:
"What's remembered about '69 -- and what's forgotten"

Call the Duke lacrosse team....

Debbie Schlussel:
"Again, proof positive you shouldn't believe anything you read in the newspapers."

Can't be.....

What happened to the good news?
Anyway, I like the noises Geithner is making. I am sure there is more bad news ahead. But there is good news, too–just this morning, we learned that the economy last quarter contracted less than it was expected to. But that can be reported in two ways. If you’re Reuters: you trot out a Chicken Little headline that says “GDP sees biggest drop in 27 years“. If you are the more moderate Drudge Report, you point to a story on Bloomberg and supply a tag line that reads “Economy Shrinks at 3.8% Pace, Less Than Estimated…” See the difference?

Unions haven't been about protecting workers for a very long time...

The labor movement takes its pound of flesh:
"As a matter of policy, it seems ridiculous to give federal contractors money to lobby against a union. On the other hand, taking down notices that workers have rights against the union seems to be frankly pandering. The rhetoric about unions always focuses on the workers, but an awful lot of the actual policy seems designed to enhance, not the power of the workers over their employers, but that of the union over the workers."

Steyn is sadly funny, and right on target...

Where Nations Go to Die:
You say “stimulus,” I hear “syphilis.

...The rules in this new “post-partisan” era are pretty simple: If the Democratic Party wants it, it’s “stimulus.” If the Republican Party opposes it, it’s “politics”—as in headlines like this: “Obama Urges GOP To Keep Politics To A Minimum On Stimulus.” These are serious times: As the President says, it’s the worst economic crisis since the Thirties. So politicians need to put politics behind them and immediately lavish $4.19 billion on his community-organizing pals at the highly inventive “voter registration” group ACORN for “neighborhood stabilization activities.”

Friday, January 30, 2009

Great piece....

Rove: Obama's Crowded White House

Again we should be warned about the massive centralization of power currently taking place with the current administration. It is more than a little ironic, considering the campaign rhetoric and all of the accusations against the Bush administration for its attempt to assert its executive power, that this President will probably make the Bushies seem like pikers when it comes to bulldozing the Constitution. But, after all is said and done, isn't this what those who elected him wanted - a President that will solve all their problems, soothe their troubled souls, and make all the goblins go away?

Rove's description of what is currently taking place shows how you can get this job done - from an infrastructure point of view..... Pay attention.

But isn't he above all of that? not......

Maggie Gallagher:
"Rush is absolutely right, this is not about Rush: it's about Obama having his cake and eating it too."

Can you imagine?

Who’s Undercutting Obama?:
"This might be the simply the problems of a new administration struggling to cope with a flood of calls and perhaps the complex machinery of the modern office. But it might also indicate that President Obama’s messages about open government have not reached press secretary Robert Gibbs and his staff.

While it is too early to judge just how this will work out, the early signs are troubling. And interviews with a dozen Washington reporters indicate that the Obama press operation tends to embrace friendly questions, while treating skeptical questions as not worth their time or, worse, as coming from an enemy."

Just how pathetic is our national intelligence service?

Jailed C.I.A. Mole Kept Spying for Russia, via Son:
"But even as federal inmate No. 49535-083, Mr. Nicholson never really retired as a Russian spy, federal prosecutors say. In an indictment unsealed Thursday, Mr. Nicholson and his 24-year-old son, Nathan, were charged with using jailhouse visits, coded letters and clandestine overseas meetings to sell more secrets to the Russians over the last three years, in a scheme Mr. Nicholson hatched from his prison cell."

Megan McArdle

Dissecting the stimulus debate:

Try and read it all. Once again, Megan gets points for trying to be fair....

All part of the game...

Belmont Club:
"Notice the phrasing: ‘Israel’s war’. Never Hamas’ war. The Hamas rockets fired over the border don’t count. Only the counterbattery does. Neither do the Palestinians who are now being executed by Hamas."

Stay worried.....

Little Green Footballs:
Anti-Israel “progressive” academic Samantha Power, who was forced to resign from Barack Obama’s presidential campaign last spring after calling Hillary Clinton “a monster,” is back out from under the bus. Campaign’s over, nobody’s left to fool with phony resignations and dismissals.

This is where we are headed...

Totally Tolerant, Up to a Point:
"Whether Mr. Wilders has deliberately insulted Muslim people is for the judges to decide. But for a man who calls for a ban on the Koran to act as the champion of free speech is a bit rich. When the British Parliament refused to screen Mr. Wilders’s film at Westminster this week, he cited this as “yet more proof that Europe is losing its freedom.” His defenders, by no means all right-wingers, also claim to be standing up for freedom. A Dutch law professor said he found it “strange” that a man should be prosecuted for “criticizing a book.”

This seems a trifle obtuse. Comparing a book that billions hold sacred to Hitler’s murderous tract is more than an exercise in literary criticism; it suggests that those who believe in the Koran are like Nazis, and an all-out war against them would be justified. This kind of thinking, presumably, is what the Dutch law court is seeking to check."

So here we have the current version of European "tolerance" being promoted in the NY Times. How wonderful! And don't you just love the fact that the writer is so accepting of the system where judges get to decide if Muslims have been insulted. Take care my fellow citizens, because this is the direction that this country is taking. We could all use a bit more insulting......

A few comments on the inept Congress...

David Brooks on the stimulus package:
"But they’ve created a sprawling, undisciplined smorgasbord, which has spun off a series of unintended consequences. First, by trying to do everything all it once, the bill does nothing well. The money spent on long-term domestic programs means there may not be enough to jolt the economy now (about $290 billion in spending is pushed off into 2011 and later). The money spent on stimulus, meanwhile, means there’s not enough to truly reform domestic programs like health technology, schools and infrastructure. The measure mostly pumps more money into old arrangements.

Second, by pumping so much money through government programs, the bill unleashes a tidal wave on state governments. A governor with a few-hundred-million-dollar shortfall will suddenly have to administer an additional $4 billion or $5 billion. That money will be corrosive both when washing in, and when it disappears in a few years time."

Taranto gets our quote of the day:

"The world" is an easy audience. Because their hatred for George W. Bush is largely irrational, for now at least it doesn't much matter what Obama says. He could casually suggest he would countenance genocide of Arab Muslims, and "the world" would applaud him as the voice of reason and compassion. (We exaggerate not.)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Is anyone surprised?

TARP Inspector General Asked to Investigate Citigroup-Funded Caribbean Junket by Members of Congress:
"FALLS CHURCH, Va., Jan. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) asked Neil M. Barofsky, the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), for a formal review of the sponsorship by Citigroup of a junket to the Caribbean by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY) and five other members of Congress, a trip that violated House Rules."

Praise Jesus....

"Note that “Science” is now a proper noun. Like “Jesus”. Meanwhile … owls."

It's a miracle!!!!

'Innocent' Gitmo Detainee Suddenly Becomes Jihadi Warrior:
"Who would have imagined that Islamic terrorists might actually lie?"

But who wouldn't listen to Obama?

But, but . . . We've DONE All That - Michael Ledeen:
"I know this is spitting into the wind, but neither is news. There have been talks between Washington and Tehran ever since 1979 (the Revolution). EVERY president has authorized them. On the public record, there were nearly thirty such talks during the Bush years, and there are 'private' channels as well. So there is nothing new in this, it is business-as-usual.

Iranian leaders have constantly demanded that we apologize, and we have. Clinton did it. Albright did it. And then, having obtained his ounce of humiliated flesh, Khamenei told them both to go to hell."

You cannot suspend the laws of cause and effect (even though that is what liberals think they can do every day)...

America reaches a tipping point
Kotkin describes the process of centralization, but not the likely results. Centralization means rigidity, less adaptability, slow growth, concentration of wealth and income, and probably even lower social mobility — as loss of regional autonomy means fewer opportunities outside the capital. And vs. other developed nations our social mobility is already low and inequality high (see here and here).

Is Paul still dead? (a worthwhile listing)...

Playing The Beatles Backwards

Popehat examines (in pretty great detail) what you can't let the government run anything...

All Baby, No Bathwater:
Short version: This is a law that may wreck thousands of small businesses over a scare in which no one was hurt. Long version, and how I determine that no one was hurt, follows...

Read the whole thing. Just another object lesson in how we cannot allow the pencilnecks and legislators to become the full-service providers of "everything".......

Update 1/29: Wired Magazine -
Small artisan toymakers and those who support their work are worried about their ability to stay in business after Feb. 10, when the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act takes effect. It requires that every toy intended for children under the age of 12 be tested for lead and phthalates.

How's that for economic stimulus?

The trials and tribulations of the "Pepsi Generation Jesus"...

"The result is that President Obama is quickly discovering that many of those easy Bush-blew-it issues of the campaign really involved only bad and worse choices of governance. Most solutions now call for realism instead of doctrinaire leftwing bromides and catchy speechmaking.

Obama should decide quickly whether to beam back down to earth. If he doesn’t, at some point even a sympathetic media won’t be able to warn him that his all-too-human actions are beginning to make a mockery of his all too holy sermons."

BTW: The "Pepsi Generation Jesus" thing is mine... I want attribution!

Who's the dishonest one?

The Agitator:
Paul Krugman wrote in a recent New York Times columnist that any economist opposing the pending stimulus package is a “dishonest flack.” Cato found 200 economists–three of them Nobel laureates–who disagree.

At least it's not an attorney.... yet

The Unkindest Tort:
"If you want to sue someone, sue the geese who flew in front of that plane."

Hate those bastards! But we want their $$$$$$....

Megan McArdle:
"Then there would be a recession, and everyone in New York would realize that all those overpaid weasels were, um, paying our bills. Bloomberg estimates that the cumulative tax loss to the city and state from the 2008 fiasco will be at least $33 billion--mostly in corporate income taxes, but $1.3 billion of that is just taxes on bonus income that evaporated in 2008. And if you think 2009 is going to be a lot better, would you be interested in putting a downpayment on a beautiful bridge linking Brooklyn to downtown Manhattan? No need to make a full payment until you get that bonus!"

I nailed this one months ago!

Very poetic....

In Dead of Winter, Shea Stadium Is Melting Away:
"In a way, the sites are a testament to the morbid curiosity of Mets fans, who have endured many morbid Mets teams."

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I can see Krugman gasping now.....

dispatches from TJICistan:
"As I understand it, there are are several objections to stimulus spending (all of which I agree with):

* the majority of it it will not come online in the next year or two
* Keynesianism is incorrect: stimulus spending accomplishes nothing
* it is being directed to the politically connected
* …and therefore even if Keynesianism is correct, it will not go to the sectors with a “multiplier” above 1.0
* it is constitutionally / morally illegitimate for the government to do it"

Some things are just so predictable....

Mother from Hell Teaches Son to See Himself As Victim:
"Yes, of course she’s an attorney"

Too commonplace....

Ghoulish Jew-Hating Egyptian Cleric Drools Over Holocaust Footage:
"The mentality that fueled Nazi Germany is alive and well in radical Islam today. This mentality is sick, twisted, and disgusting. What’s appalling is the thought that it is also commonplace."

Always a voice of reason...

Michael Yon:
"...I wanted to tell the Ambassador that I hope the Israeli Defence Forces ripped Hamas out by the roots. Apparently they did not, but the thousands of rocket strikes against Israel warranted a serious response. Some people say that the Israeli response was disproportionate. I agree. A more proportionate response would have seen Israel launching thousands of rockets into Gaza. I read one report that the peak times for Hamas to launch on Israel is when the kids are going to school, or coming home from school. Yet while many international players reflexively point their fingers at Jews and Israelis, clearly the Israelis want peace. The Jews would rather be in school than in a tank."

Via Instapundit...

DOWN THE TUBES AT THE EUROPEAN UNION: “If you want to see just where the EU is going, then take a look at sections 1205-00 and 1206-00. Both of them say that it is a crime to ‘insult’ the State, the Nation, the symbols of the State or Nation, or representatives of the State/Nation. Does this mean that it is considered a crime if someone writes an op-ed that is disparaging of a politician? Sure sounds like it.” Experience suggests that if challenged, they’ll say of course not. Then, in the right case, they’ll change their mind.

Yup! We sure need to be more like them.....

A life without consequenses....?

Victor Davis Hanson:
"If anyone wished to know what the baby-boomer generation would do when, in its full maturity, it hit its first self-created, big-time recession, I think we are seeing the hysterical results. After two decades of unprecedented economic growth, rampant consumer spending, and unimaginable borrowing to satisfy our insatiable appetites, we are suddenly going into even larger debt and printing trillions of dollars in paper money to ensure that someone else after we are gone pays the debt. As if the permanent solution to a financial panic and years of spending wealth we didn't create were a government take-over of the economy in the manner we currently witness in Spain, Italy, and Greece—or the high-tax, high-spend ethos of a bankrupt California."

More Hope & Change!!!


AS WELL THEY SHOULD: Republicans Object to Stimulus Dollars for ACORN. It’s like the whole thing is just about steering money to supporters and cronies.

But why “stimulate” a place that runs a sweatshop? “Pushed to meet daily quotas and bullied by bosses if they didn’t, Ohio ACORN workers faked voter registrations, signed up people more than once, and even paid off registrants to keep from being fired, its canvassers told The Post. ” I thought Democrats were against sweatshops?

More Hope & Change!!!


AS WELL THEY SHOULD: Republicans Object to Stimulus Dollars for ACORN. It’s like the whole thing is just about steering money to supporters and cronies.

But why “stimulate” a place that runs a sweatshop? “Pushed to meet daily quotas and bullied by bosses if they didn’t, Ohio ACORN workers faked voter registrations, signed up people more than once, and even paid off registrants to keep from being fired, its canvassers told The Post. ” I thought Democrats were against sweatshops?

Quote of the Day:
"A large number of people, certainly the majority of the political looter class, think the best way to deal with the rapidly deepening economic crisis is via 'stimulus packages' with money plucked off the magic money tree... which is to say, by trying to re-inflate the credit bubble that actually caused the crisis. This is a bit like treating alcoholics by urging them to buy more whiskey."

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

...And we're here to "help" you!

Congress Close to Delaying Digital TV Switch

This is just the perfect example of why we should NEVER be allowing the idiots in government to do anything important. This fiasco has been going on for nearly 10 years. TEN YEARS!!! And we are no closer to having it done properly. So what difference will 4 months make?

None... you can count on it. But, of course, the Obama administration considers this a major victory....

Lord help us all.

Yes, but MSNBC is happy.... so you don't count

"I never thought I’d think this, but perhaps the two friends I lost in the terror attacks of 9/11 have, in fact, died in vain."

Monday, January 26, 2009

Taranto (again) always has his finger on the pulse....

More than 144 hours into Barack Obama's presidency, the economy is still in recession, the country is still at war, and in many parts of the country it's still cold outside. Citizens are growing impatient: Wasn't President Obama supposed to bring change?

Yet one institution has changed dramatically, and in a very short time: the press. After spending the Bush years as a voice of opposition, American journalists have by and large turned on a dime and become cheerleaders for the man in power....

Where do they come up with this?

"See, if al Qaeda attacked Bush, it would be because Bush did such terrible things to the Arab world. If al Qaeda attacks Obama, it’s because Obama is getting under al Qaeda’s skin by being so gosh-darn popular with Arabs.

The idea that al Qaeda is just going to attack any American president doesn’t appear to have occurred to these chowderheads. The article is filled with analysis from “experts” telling us how the ├╝ber-popular Obama is scaring the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out of the terrorists with his enormous popularity."

I don't know if I should Hope or Change....

"The panel created on Sept. 24 to probe the Harlem Democrat's alleged ethical lapses has been virtually disbanded, after meeting only twice in four months on the matter, The Post has learned.

Of the four congressmen named to look into the powerful Ways and Means Committee chairman, only one remains - Alabama Republican Jo Bonner. The three others left the Rangel probe last month when they were 'rotated' off the 10-member Committee on Standards of Official Conduct."

Lemme' get this straight....

Pelosi says birth control will help the economy.

A novel idea.....

You have to wonder....

I Guess The Economy Isn't So Bad:
"If the politicians in Washington won't do the right thing and support a plan like that, there's no reason for the American people to trust them with spending this money. If there's an emergency, they should start acting like it, instead of the usual bunch of pigs at the trough."

Thank God Krugman disagrees. Now I know Riehl is probably on the right track!

Your Congress hard at work...

The Stimulus Time Machine

Sunday, January 25, 2009

As usual, no one....

Gaza in Ruins: 'Who Has Won Here?':
"In the Gaza Strip people are returning home -- or to the rubble that was once their home. Many are blaming Hamas for the destruction because the militants hid among civilians and attracted Israeli fire. Yet no one dares to speak out openly."

Business as usual....

"We wouldn't be surprised to see the President's green future wrestled to the ground by the likes of Mr. Delahunt, the Kennedys and other anticarbon Democrats. Environmentalists love the idea of milking Mother Nature for power, but they hate the hardware needed to make it work: huge windmills, acres of solar panels, high-voltage transmission lines to connect them to the places where people live. Of course, they still totally, absolutely, wholeheartedly support green energy -- as long as it gets built where someone else goes yachting."