October 30, 2013


The old: The buck stops here.

The new: What difference, at this point, does it make where the buck stops?

The newest: Whatever.

Addendum 20131103: "I won’t be surprised to see the Clintons claim, with a straight face, that everything was fine until Hillary left the State Department."

October 24, 2013

Civilizational Suicide: The Latest Fashion

Disdain and shaming of couples with more than two children. Instapundit calls it fecundophobia (here too).

Before the financial crisis, Wall Streeters were having lots of kids. So the signals are mixed.

(But of course we can't criticize never-married welfare mothers with multiple children and multiple fathers. That would be racist.)

October 23, 2013

I Didn't Know This

From a reader review of Harvey Silverglate's Three Felonies a Day:
... between 2001 and 2007 the Department of Justice (DoJ) opened investigations into seven times more Democratic public officials than Republicans.
Curious, isn't it, that this goes unmentioned by the people beating the tom-tom's about the Obama administration's abuse of the IRS?

That corruption is bipartisan does not make it more excusable. On the contrary, the fact that it is systemic makes it more serious.

Denmark Is a Happy Place

In fact, supposedly the happiest country in the world, according to HuffPo.

Why? Gender equality and support for families, among other things.

Sooo...what's the birth rate among these happy Danes? Not at replacement level. Odd that HuffPo doesn't mention that.

NB: I'm not dismissing what the Danes are doing. Maybe they're on to something. I wish them well. They're worth watching. However, it's not yet clear whether they have a sustainable society or whether,drawing down the social capital accumulated by previous generations, they're gracefully extincting themselves. Until their native population becomes self-sustaining (or not), the jury is still out. Their current birth rate makes their solution incomplete, and Incomplete is the grade I give.

They Named It the WHAT?!

Nowadays my life is a solitary one. I neither get out much nor keep up with trends.

Nevertheless, passing by a McDonald's, I was stupefied to learn that the company recently introduced a product they call the McWrap. The director of US marketing explains:
She added that the Premium McWrap platform itself was an example of a menu idea from other areas of the world that McDonald’s imported to the United States.
I'm guessing that they don't speak colloquial English in those areas of the world, nor, apparently, do they do so at McDonald's headquarters.

However, if the few reviews I've seen are any indication, the name is well chosen.

(The only comparison that comes to mind was told me by a plausible source back in the 1980s: some advertising genius pitched to An Wang, the founder and CEO of Wang Laboratories, the slogan Wang: The Chink In IBM's Armor.)

October 22, 2013

America's Future: California Shows the Way

Poverty. California's is highest in the nation. (HT: Instapundit.)

The GOP's corporatism is little better, if what I read about North Carolina is true.

The problem is the size and reach of government, not which party is in charge. They're both corrupt.

October 20, 2013

Obamacare and Obama GOTV

Legal Insurrection notes the discrepancy. I couldn't say it as well as David Gerstman did.

In fact I didn't say it as well, but I said it a week earlier.

October 17, 2013

A Religious Kook, I Suspect

A stenographer disrupted the House. Instapundit says she sounds like an Obama supporter. From the biblical flavor of her rantings, I'm guessing a religious nut. (Could be a congregant of a preacher like Jeremiah Wright, and thereby both.) We'll know soon enough.

Added before posting: Yup, she shouted "Praise be to GOD".

October 15, 2013

Here'a a Crazy Thought

The USA wouldn't be tied up in knots about the debt crisis if the government didn't have any debt.

Completely nuts, I admit. If anyone should happen to read this, please don't have the mental health authorities track me down.

I mean, who could have possibly foreseen today's precarious mess back when our wise, compassionate and prudent elites were making all those "investments"?

October 10, 2013

Planning for the Shutdown

Dinocrat notes that detailed planning was required to set up the annoying, visible, and unnecessary shutdowns. Who did it? Who gave the orders?

Yours truly
chimes in that this seems a promising plot (pun intended) for digging with the FOIA.

The Queen of Self-Reliance Didn't Tell Me This

States most affected by the federal shutdown include:
—D.C., Maryland, Alaska, Hawaii and Virginia have the most federal workers per capita and are disproportionately affected by the shutdown's immediate impact.

—D.C., Virginia, Alaska,New Mexico and Maryland receive the most federal contract money per capita, which means people in those areas stand to lose even if they don't technically work for the federal government.

—Small-business owners from the Dakotas, Colorado, Alaska and Michigan who are seeking funding are hurt most by an inability to garner Small Business Administration loans, as those states have displayed the highest small-business borrowing rates in recent years.
(Cf. Forbes...and consider the amazing resemblance between the CNBC piece and the prior Forbes one.)

Dukakis and Palin: the kind of "reformer" whose real complaint about the machine is that they're not in charge.

October 9, 2013

On Commenting in the Blogosphere

Thoughts here:
Yes, some people behave as though being too toxic to interact with means they “win”.

A thought or few have lodged in my brain to keep me sane online (to the extent that I am):

1. I am not obliged to have the last word. Getting (or foregoing) the last word does not mean I’m right and it doesn’t mean I’m wrong.

2. For certain discussions: If an onlooker buys into my interlocutor’s “argument”, anything I say will not change their mind.

3. Some things are not worth the time to talk about.

4. I like to talk with people who have something to offer me, whether or not we agree, whether or not I persuade, am persuaded, or neither. If they have nothing to offer me, why am I talking with them?

And if my counterparty doesn’t view me similarly—it’s highly unlikely that they are Richard Feynman, posting anonymously from Beyond—, why are they talking with me?

5. Unfortunately, my belief in suasion by reason has declined since I went online. Some people in effect demand to be manipulated. (Nor am I necessarily always immune.)
I quit smoking a long time ago. Before taking the last and hopefully final plunge, I knew I'd have to quit eventually but wasn't ready. I'm developing a similar attitude toward comenting online.

That attitude is probably suboptimal. What I should do is develop a thick(er) skin about ignoring people with whom engagement doesn't advance my understanding.

October 6, 2013

A Simple Reason Why Republicans Lose

... swing voters distrust both parties wrt hidden agendas. That being so, they understandably vote for the party that offers them free stuff.
Abusive behavior directed at me in that thread was tolerated by the blog owner, whose position it supported. A few months ago I decided between subscribing to Hoyt's site and joining Ricochet. Apparently I chose wrongly and, unless something changes, will correct the mistake unless something changes by renewal time. Yet another reason why libertarians and conservatives lose: they either have forgotten or are unwilling to emulate what Reagan demonstrated about disagreeing without being disagreeable.

October 4, 2013

WWII Memorial Wired Shut


Sometimes a little thing is more revealing than a big thing.

Miriam Carey

1. Carey was the individual shot by DC law enforcement. An investigation should be conducted to determine whether unnecessary force was used. Was there a prospect of her gaining entry to high-value government facilities? Was there a plausible risk that she would do harm to high-value government personnel?

2. I'm thinking that some people are disappointed by how this turned out. Case in point (boldface mine):
Dr. Matt
10/04/2013 7:04:16 am PDT

Clint Van Zandt was reporting today that she was paranoid about the government and thought President Obama was spying on her. Wonder how this paranoia was fueled…….,.
The Tea Party made her do it!

3. What was involved in the "lockdown" of the Capitol? Were members free to leave if they wished? It would be a very bad sign if they weren't.

Added: Instapundit quotes Da Tech Guy along the lines of my #1. Not surprisingly, some of his commenters are frothing-mouth crazy.

Addendum 20131008: Instapundit and PJM's Jack Dunphy defend the police, but some commenters at each link aren't buying it.

October 3, 2013

The Bush-Rove-Delay-Lott Crowd's True Colors, Again

My post at LI:
Trent Lott trashed Ted Cruz…to a Mother Jones reporter.

The prominence of people like Lott and Rove in the previous administration is one reason why my contempt for Bush has not diminished despite the passage of time and his catastrophic successor.
Obama's disaster does not mitigate Bush's failure. "Miss me yet?" No.

Oh Yeah, the Snowden Affair

I haven't joined the Republican screeching about Snowden's accusations because I recall that Bush started, or accelerated, this stuff.

Lately there haven't been too many stories about evil Chinese hackers compromising our security so giving more power to our wise and good government was the only recourse. (Yes, Chinese hackers probably are compromising our security...and some people see that as an opportunity to further erode our liberty.)