Sunday, 27 September 2009


It’s BlogMeet day, hooray!

At dinner with a friend last night I mentioned that I was planning to attend the blogmeet this afternoon:

He:  Do you have to bring your librtarian membership card to get in?

Me:  No, but your concealed.carry.permit would probably be appropriate.

It’s 3:00, at Brugge, in Broadripple.  Be there!

UPDATE 090928:  Brigid has picturesRoberta promises picturesTam has thoughts!

Other attendees:  Joanna, Mycroft, Shermlock (& Mrs.), RobK, Mad St. Jack, and Shootin’ Buddy.  Oh, and me.

Marvelous afternoon for sittin’ on the patio, and the usual terrific company.

And Brugge was great, too.  Hadn’t been before, but will definitely get back.

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Friday, 25 September 2009

In Passing

“Would you prefer to be hanged or shot?”

Mickey Kaus:

Stupidest question on the latest CBS/NYT poll:

23.  Which comes closest to your view?
  1. The U.S. needs to fix its health care system now as part of fixing the overall economy.
  2. Because of the state of the economy, the U.S. cannot afford to fix its health care system right now.
What if you just think it’s something we should do and that we can afford to pay for?
Or if you think that the adminstration proposals for “fixing healthcare” won’t accomplish one whit when it comes to “fixing the overall economy?”

When they got to the end, 47% of the poll’s respondents said they’d rather be living in Philadelphia, thanks (although with the death panels that may not be an available option).

Via:  DP

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In Passing

Correlation is not causation

Facile, but —  No. Dept

Johanna Neuman, Los Angeles Times:

Via:  IP

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Thursday, 24 September 2009

In Passing

Shhhh! Somebody is *older* today

Actually, everybody is older, but somebody is having an anniversary:

...which is fun, although I’m now officially closer to 30 than 20.  Most women my age get a little freaked out by that, but Im actually glad about it.  You see, Saturday is also my birthday:  It’s the two-year anniversary of when I kicked cancer in the knee and told it to shut up and go make me a sandwich, I’m too busy for that bullcrap.
Congratulations, and that’s telling ’em!

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Tuesday, 22 September 2009

In Passing

Sweet land of liberty...

Mike reflects on how far we’ve come [links in original]:

Keep telling yourself how “free” you are next time you strap on your government-mandated seat belt to drive your heavily regulated automobile to a garage sale that’s been federally-inspected and sanctioned [link now dead, try this one- o.g.], or flush your government-approved toilet — the necessary two or three times.  Keep it in mind when you try to hire someone who doesn’t meet federal diversity standards, and oh — better be sure you pay them the wage the government tells you is high enough, too.  Don’t even think about enjoying a flavored cigarette on your break; best forget about sodas and other drinks with sugar in them too, because they’re next on the ban-list.  When you get home and notice that one of your piece of shit government-mandated CFL lightbulbs is dead, be sure to dispose of it according to federal regulations.  And thank your benevolent government every day for the one freedom you actually do retain: the “freedom” to do everything the government tells you, as and when it tells you.

No tyranny to see here, folks, just government-approved FREEDOM!
Be sure to read the whole thing; skip it and you’ll miss Mike’s total demolition of the Wall Street Journal’s Thomas Frank.

Via DP, where you can also find:

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Sunday, 20 September 2009

In Passing

Says it all, doesn’t it?

But we were naïve

The US sold us
and stabbed us
in the back
...well, actually no.

Lech Wałęsa, former president of Poland, has a few words, too:
Americans have always cared only about their interests, and all other [countries] have been used for their purposes.  This is another example...  [Poles] need to review our view of America, we must first of all take care of our business...

I could tell from what I saw, what kind of policies President Obama cultivates.  I simply don’t like this policy, not because this shield was required, but [because of] the way we were treated.
Feel good, America!

Note:  If you attended a public school and therefore have no knowledge of history since 1940, find out why Wałęsa is important (and why the lefties hate him) by starting here and here.

Making the right enemies:  
Oh look!  Hugo Chavez has banned him from entering Venezuela!

(Quote HT:  QandO)

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Saturday, 19 September 2009

In Passing

I have seen the future, and it’s dim

But they can’t black out the moon  Dept

Peter Ashley:
We've seen some jaw-dropping dictats... for some time, but this one beggers belief.  So, from yesterday apparently, it's ‘ban all those perfectly serviceable lightbulbs, use this [CFL] crap instead because it will save a polar bear’.   Ugly, dim, and utterly out-of-step.  And that’s just the Department of Eco Facism.  Will we now have the Lightbulb Police flashing their clockwork torches through our windows- “ere, put that light out, dont yer know theres an iceberg melting?”.  What are cartoonists going to do if theyre stopped from putting the traditional bulb above someones head to denote ‘idea’?...
Don’t laugh Americans, it’ll be here in three years.

Oh well, as Peter says, we can always go back to candles.


(Thanks to “mummylonglegs” for pointing me to Peter’s blog.)

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Thursday, 17 September 2009

In Passing

GW shark officially jumped

Sing, sing a song  Dept

British rock group Duran Duran and heavy metal band Scorpions are among 55 world celebrities who have joined in recording a song to draw attention to the global warming crisis, organisers said on Monday.

The song is part of a mass media campaign on the threats of climate change organised by the Geneva-based Global Humanitarian Forum, headed by former UN secretary general Kofi Annan....

The media campaign featuring the song is aimed at putting pressure on world leaders to reach an agreement on tackling climate change at a UN-sponsored conference in Copenhagen in December.
Wonder how much carbon they’ll emit on the way to the recording session?

Via: Robert

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In Passing

Pelosi: “What did they do?”

Later, related (via Paco):  Going out in a blaze of bias.

Pelosi via JWF (via IP), Gibson via PJM.

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Tuesday, 15 September 2009

In Passing

What buses?

In his Capital Journal column in today’s Wall Street Journal, Gerald Seib gets it nearly right about the TEA Partiers.[1]  But only after he stumbles out of the gate:

The buses that rolled into the U.S. Capital over the weekend, carrying protesters steamed up about government spending and decrying the advent of “socialism,” may appear to represent a rich new vein in American politics.
Aside from the unfortunate metaphor (Is it the buses or the protesters themselves doing the representing?), his evocation of buses left my teeth on edge.

Because the image of protesters rolling in on buses carries with it the scent of astroturf:  The New York City ACORN operatives hauled to Connecticut to demonstrate outside the homes of bank executives, or the purple-shirted SEIU gangs who crowded out ordinary citizens at congressional Town Halls.  While I am certain that at least some of the TEA Partiers made their way to D.C. by bus[4] (whether the faithful Greyhound or some deluxe motorcoach chartered by an opportunistic entrepreneur), I am also certain that the vast majority paid their own way.  “Buses... carrying protesters” skates uncomfortably close to dog-whistling the lefty meme that the TEA Partiers are shills financed by shadowy third parties, bought and paid for.[2]

Seib’s attempt to view the TEA Partiers through the lens of Ross Perot’s Reform Party also seems a bit of a stretch.  For one thing, the Reform Party (at least by the time Perot ran for president) was largely a top-down operation (with Perot its out-front face).  The TEA Parties began- and remain, despite Glenn Beck- bottom-up locally driven.  Yet the assumption of similarity encourages top-down analysis of a bottom-up movement, with its resulting misunderstandings.

There are several times he almost gets it: “Perotistas” were angry at George H.W. Bush, the TEA Partiers’ anger targets Barak Obama.  True, as far as it goes.  But by limiting the target to the current president (ignoring the long-building anger at the RINO Republicans), and defining that anger as
...alternat[ing] between suspicion of government in general... and the idea that government seems to be doing more to help fat cats or the other guy
Seib dodges the fact that the TEA Partiers have the entire political-media-educational establishment in their sights, and ignores their fear of that establishment’s malevolence as a motivator
We don’t like having to fight desperate battles to save our freedom and future from socialist politicians every ten or twenty years...  We’re tired of checking the papers each day, to see which group of us has been targeted as enemies of the State.[3]
Thus, although it may be doubtful (as Seib says) that
... many of the senior citizens on the buses want their Medicare coverage turned into a voucher program...
what is not doubtful is that those senior citizens are worried about winding up losers once the dust settles on whatever medical care “reform” the establishment deigns to foist upon them.

He’s also only half there on the TEA Party attitude toward government spending: The TEA Partiers may be “more vocal about the level of spending, less about the way it’s being financed” than Perot’s followers, but that is because most of Perot’s Reformers had accepted the proposition that big government would be With Us Always, leaving “How do we pay for it?” as the only question.  TEA Partiers want a less-expensive, less-intrusive, smaller federal government, and they see bailouts, ACORN grants, industry-takeovers, and earmarks as ideal candidates for the chop.

And he pulls the usual WSJ trick of (vaguely) casting the TEA Partiers’ calls for enforcement of immigration laws as evidence of xenophobia:
[It is] ...doubtful...[that they] share the view of many economic conservatives that the country benefits overall from immigration.
This is unworthy of honest reporting, but, again considering the Journal’s previous performance on this issue, unsurprising.

Where Seib does get it 100% right is in his warning to the Republicans:
Republicans who think they can harness Tea Party Patriots and their anger may be in for a rude surprise... they find themselves gleefully tossed out the door with the rest of the hack politicians. [And I added that last part.]

Overall, I’d score this one “6 out of 10, go read Doc Zero (footnoted below) and Victor Davis Hanson.”

Oh, and what’s with the scare quotes around “socialism”?

[1]  Style note: Inspired by the bumpersticker “Taxed Enough Already,” I’ve decided to capitalize all three letters in “TEA.” Although I realize it’s certainly not “all about taxes.”

[2]  Exactly who is doing the paying remains conveniently obscure. (And where’s my check?)

[3]  “Doctor Zero:” “Who We Are,” Hot Air’s Greenroom, August 5, 2009

[4]  (added 090917) Turns out there were 4500 bus permits (for all events) issued for September 12.

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