Monday, 31 August 2009

In Passing

Orrin Hatch (!) joins Chris Dodd; backs Kennedy to replace Kennedy

Must Be Something In the Water  Dept

Boston Herald (via Jules Crittenden):
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), a close friend of the late senator, publicly urged Vicki Kennedy’s appointment to the post, at least on an interim basis.

“I think Vicki ought to be considered,” Hatch said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”  “She’s a very brilliant lawyer.  She’s a very solid individual.  She certainly made a difference in Ted’s life, let me tell you.  And I have nothing but great respect for her.”

Close friend Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) backed the idea.
Demonstrating (yet again) that when the chips are down, they’re all part of the same political establishment.

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Wednesday, 26 August 2009

In Passing

Dangerous curve?

Wow!  THAT Looks Familiar...  Dept

Chart (without snark) from this Wall Street Journal editorial.

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Tuesday, 25 August 2009

In Passing


That’s TWICE what YOU earn  Dept

Data from CATO’s Chris Edwards, who notes:
Members of Congress who have large numbers of federal workers in their districts relentlessly push for expanding federal worker compensation.  Also, the Bush administration had little interest in fiscal restraint, and it usually got rolled by the federal unions.  The result has been an increasingly overpaid elite of government workers, who are insulated from the economic reality of recessions and from the tough competitive climate of the private sector.
Gee, I remember when government employees used to get paid less.  I guess this is because of those lousy benefits government workers get, that and the non-existent job security... oh wait!
Federal workers typically have generous holiday and vacation schedules, flexible work hours, training options, incentive awards, excessive disability benefits, flexible spending accounts, union protections, and a usually more relaxed pace of work than private workers. Perhaps the most important benefit of federal work is the extreme job security.  The rate of “involuntary separations” (layoffs and firings) in the federal workforce is just one-quarter the rate in the private sector.

Via:  Warren at Coyote Blog, where a bunch of commenters are offering excuses.  (I’m not buying ’em.)

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Friday, 21 August 2009

In Passing

All we need now is a “Bazaar Czar”

“Told-ja So!”  Dept

Remember, they said, “Oh, they’d never do that.”  Well, that was then.
As part of a campaign called Resale Roundup, the federal government is cracking down on the secondhand sales of dangerous and defective products.

The initiative, which targets toys and other products for children, enforces a new provision that makes it a crime to resell anything that
s been recalled by its manufacturer.
The crackdown affects sellers ranging from major thrift-store operators such as Goodwill and the Salvation Army to everyday Americans cleaning out their attics for yard sales, church bazaars or — increasingly — digital hawking on eBay, Craigslist and other Web sites.
Staffers for the federal agency are fanning out across the country to conduct training seminars on the regulations at dozens of thrift shops.
Scott Wolfson, a spokesman for the agency, said it wouldn’t be dispatching bureaucratic storm troopers into private homes to see whether people were selling recalled products from their garages, yards or churches.
“We’re not looking to come across as being heavy-handed,” he said.
Too late!
“We want to make sure that everybody knows what the rules of engagement are to help spur greater compliance, so that enforcement becomes less of an issue.  But were still going to enforce.”
The commission’s Internet surveillance unit is monitoring Craigslist and other “top auction and reselling sites” for recalled goods...
The Resale Roundup is being enforced under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, which Congress passed
...without reading...
and President George W. Bush signed into law last year.
Thanks again, George!

Quotes from McClatchy Newspapers, via: Hot Air  (HT to “ICBM” for the title!)

, Elsewhere (090825 17:40):
Baby Troll Blog:  For Just Five Minutes...
View From The Porch:  The Toy Police

Previous CPSIA madness here and here.  Tam says, “Keep your slimy, regulation-encrusted hands off my childhood, you bastards.

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Monday, 17 August 2009

In Passing

Why do you suppose he did that?

Andrew Breitbart on George W. Bush:

His birth into a wealthy and politically connected family is where a lot of the animus starts.  His rejection of his Connecticut roots and adoption of a rugged Texan persona naturally riled his birth-constituency...

(Via:  IP)

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In Passing

Now it’s “Co-operative” health insurance?

Officials from both political parties reached across the aisle in an effort to find compromises on proposals they left behind when they returned to their districts for an August recess.
Hurrah! Here comes SnoweCare!  (Gee, I feel so reassured!)
Obama had sought the government to run a health insurance organization to help cover the nation's almost 50 million uninsured, but he never made it a deal breaker...
Oh, really?  (And BTW, AP, “50 million” = bogus number.  Do your research.)
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that government alternative to private health insurance is “not the essential element” of the administration's health care overhaul.
And I am Marie of Romania.  (Can you say “walk back”?)
Under a proposal by Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., consumer-owned nonprofit cooperatives would sell insurance in competition with private industry, not unlike the way electric and agriculture co-ops operate, especially in rural states such as his own.
I don’t have a philosophical objection to co-ops (provided they don’t get special treatment), but let’s not confuse “consumer ownership” with “accountability.”  Hint: Seniors, think AARP.
With $3 billion to $4 billion in initial support from the government...
And if co-ops are such a good idea, why do they need billion$ in subsidies?  More cash for Friends of Nancy & Barak?
...the co-ops would operate under a national structure with state affiliates, but independent of the government...
...and everybody else, except for their administrators.  Think AARP.
[Sebelius:] “You don’t turn over the whole new marketplace to private insurance companies and trust them to do the right thing.”
What “new marketplace”?  It isn’t as if we haven’t had private health insurance all along (although it’s unsurprising that a government apparatchik would be unaware of it).  And why not trust the private companies?  It isn’t as if the government is that much more trustworthy...

UPDATE 090817 17:11:
White House now walking back the walk-back.
An administration official said tonight that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius “misspoke”...
Of course she did.

Related:  If the government plan screws up your care, who’s accountable?  (Can you say “sovereign immunity”?)  “alexthechick” has some nuts-n-bolts questions, here and here.

(Quotes from AP Story hosted at Yahoo! News.)

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Saturday, 15 August 2009

In Passing

Kill that LiveJournal Snap popup

Add these entries to your HOSTS file:

For more details, see How to kill that Snap popup - dead!



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In Passing

RIP, Caramon

a.k.a. Snooch.

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Friday, 14 August 2009

In Passing

Yale Fail, cont’d.

Clothesless Emperor Dept

Bill Quick noticed this (which I’d scanned past and missed) in the Times story:
Ms. Klausen [the author] said she was also disturbed by Yale’s insistence that she could read a 14-page summary of the consultants’ recommendations only if she signed a confidentiality agreement that forbade her from talking about them.  “I perceive it to be a gag order,” she said, after declining to sign.  While she could understand why some of the individuals consulted might prefer to remain unidentified, she said, she did not see why she should be precluded from talking about their conclusions.
Bill comments:
The Acadame’s Star Chamber has ruled.  Who are you to question them?  Or their identities?
And ain’t it interesting how all the academy’s fine talk about open, objective scholarship means absolutely nothing when you throw a bit of good old-fashioned fear into the mix?


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Thursday, 13 August 2009

In Passing

Yale University = wuss central

The New York Times:
Yale University and Yale University Press consulted two dozen authorities, including diplomats and experts on Islam and counterterrorism, and the recommendation was unanimous:  The book, “The Cartoons That Shook the World,” should not include the 12 Danish drawings that originally appeared in September 2005.  What’s more, they suggested Meowthat the Yale press also refrain from publishing any other illustrations of the prophet that were to be included, specifically, a drawing for a children’s book; an Ottoman print; and a sketch by the 19th-century artist Gustave Doré of Muhammad being tormented in Hell, an episode from Dante’s “Inferno” that has been depicted by Botticelli, Blake, Rodin and Dalí…

John Donatich, the director of Yale University Press chief wuss, said by telephone that the decision was difficult, but the recommendation to withdraw the images, including the historical ones of Muhammad, was “overwhelming and unanimous.”  The cartoons are freely available on the Internet and can be accurately described in words, Mr. Donatich said, so reprinting them could be interpreted easily as gratuitous.
I can’t imagine any “respectable academic institution” seeking similar prior-to-publication “diplomatic and expert” input on a book about, oh... say... satirical depictions of Jesus Christ.  Let alone paying attention to it.  But then I’m no policially-correct liberal academic, so what do I know?

Disgraceful.  Yale should change its school color to yellow. And its mascot from the bulldog to the pussycat.

Elsewhere (added 18:38, updated 090814 17:25):
Roger Kimball:  “This is contemporary academia, after all.” (via IP)
Reason’s Hit and Run:  Yale’s Preemptive Surrender, where “Tulpa” wins the internet:
You guys are misinterpreting him [Donatich], this isn't cowardice.  He was saying that if they published the cartoons, and some crazy group threatened him for it, he wouldn't be able to stop himself from ripping off his cardigan, grabbing a bunch of his Ivy League pals and a truckload of machine guns and ammo, painting themselves in camo, and going on a mission to find the threateners and kill them and their families in as slow a manner as possible.

Related:  Gateway Pundit notes that the Times report linked above (again) fails to tell the whole truth about the cartoon controversy.

Via:  Hot Air

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