Thursday, September 30, 2010

Check the Consitution? That's crazy!

Yeah... the meme is growing.

Now it's Newsweek that thinks this whole checking a bill for constitutionality is crazy talk.

Michael Tanner has some thoughts as well.

The Obama administration and congressional Democrats have adopted a view of virtually unlimited government power that is clearly contrary to the Founders’ vision of a constitutionally limited government. In their vision, government roams the countryside fixing problems — any problems. Having trouble paying your mortgage? Don’t worry, the federal government will help you. Your local school not doing a good job? The federal government will be there to help. Don’t have health insurance? The federal government will make you buy it. As Rep. Pete Stark (D., Calif.) told constituents, “the federal government can do most anything.

The Constitution, with all its messy checks and balances and its attempt to limit government to only certain “enumerated powers,” is little more than a nuisance. “I don’t worry about the Constitution,” if it gets in the way of passing legislation, Rep. Phil Hare (D., Ill.) told a town-hall meeting. And Rep. James Clyburn (D., S.C.), the
third-highest-ranking Democrat in the House, proudly told Fox News, “There’s nothing in the Constitution that says that the federal government has anything to do with most of the stuff we do.”

It makes one wonder why members of Congress take that silly oath to “support and defend the Constitution” when they are sworn into office.

A bloated runaway government naturally sees people that point out the limitations designed to check it as a threat.

And who are some of the people on suspected terrorist lists? Those that:

“Make numerous references to US Constitution,” “Claim driving is a right, not a privilege” and “Attempt to ‘police the police.’” In addition, “People whose political motivation is usually Marxist/Leninist philosophy,” “‘defenders’ of the US Constitution against federal government and the UN,” computer hackers, and “Lone Individuals”

Charming, so they want to watch you and possibly take away your right to arms and travel. All for supporting a docment they swore and oath to uphold.

It's not like they'd be willing to kill you. You're a US citizen there are rules that keep the goverment from simply killing you because they want too.

Right? Well ask al-Awlaki.

Ah damn it.

If our covert-ops guys light up some al-Qaeda redoubt in the mountains and al-Awlaki bites the dust, no tears from me. But those are very different things from having the U.S. government draw up a list of its own citizens to be targeted for assassination. The fact that the Obama administration went out of its way to make this fact public tells us something interesting, too: It is making a specific political point, and establishing a specific precedent. It is crossing an old and important line, and conservatives should never let the rule of unintended consequences be very far from our minds.

Roberta X looks at how naked it all is.

Bad stuff, that's what it leads to. Seems the Executive Branch is arguin' in court that they have a right to [State Secrets!] declare a U. S. citizen a bad guy and then [State Secrets!] put him to sleep like a mad dog. Well, actually, they're not even doin' that; near as I can figure out, they want the court to forget anyone even asked about it, 'cos it's a [State Secret!].

But you see... it's those of us that want less goverment power and a return to limited government that are crazy.

As Rep. Pete Stark said "the federal government can do most anything."


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Odd... places

Well, where I live has gotten stranger.

Though, it serves as a great example of the cascading effect of cutting back on preventative maintenance and repairs. It started when the complex came under new owners.

But now it's getting to where at least a quarter of the units are empty. I'd think it was a plan to liquidate the facility, but they are renewing leases. They also just completed construction on a building to replace one that was lost in a fire. Those expense could be why maintenance has been defrayed.

The fascinating part is that maintenance hasn't gone critically downhill (yet?), but it is enough to get people itchy feet.

For my part my lease is a short term and come spring I will be looking, so there's that.

My concern lies in commute time (never spend more than an hour on the road driving too and from work if you can avoid it), allowing pets, and atmosphere (quiet, facilities, accessibility).

What I like about my current place is that it's quiet and peaceful... more so now I suppose. Though it's age is showing, and wouldn't be if they were maintaining it.

Bah. At least now with the renewal I have a firm timeline when I have to get things done. Now to find areas that are within a half hour's rush hour drive of Kentucky and Raymond

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

From the Face Book

Just today my friend Casey said this:

So Yesterday I reached the pinical of my scientific career. While wearing a full lab coat, with ten pens in the pocket, I turned to the technician and said with full relivance and intent "More power to the Laser" and it was so.

Thought it deserved sharing.

Now... were goggles worn? In my experience, you can't use a good laser without goggles.

Monday, September 27, 2010


This is for Italian sausage. Cooking right now. I didn't get any pictures as I cooked but will try to get some with the finished result.

For this you'll need 6 sausages, 15oz can of tomato sauce(I prefer plain and work my own), 1 large shallot, 5 pearl onions, clove of garlic, olive oil.

Spices: black pepper, white pepper, red pepper, red pepper flakes (any kind to spice, cumin, basil, oregano, bay leaf.

First you put some oil in a good flat pan, you want enough to cover the surface with a thin layer. Put it on medium and add in half of the shallot, onion, garlic. Rough dice, IE the pearl onions can be divided into eight pieces.

As this happens get a small pot with for the sauce. It should be about 2 to 3 times the size as needed. Pour the sauce into the pot and put in the rest of the diced roots. Add spices to taste.

Once the oil has heated up and taken some of the flavors you can add the sausage. As they brown up you can keep an eye on the sauce.

As the sausages near completion you can take one, dice it up and put it in the sauce. Then when the rest finish you should put them on a paper towel and blot out all the excess grease. Clean the pan.

By now the sausages should have set and cooled, now put them in the sauce. This will finish it all and give you a good among of very meaty sauce.

Can be served with bread or pasta. There, I wanted to get somthing of this recipie up for a while.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Unconstitutional? What are you a judge?

Via Ramesh Ponnoru, guess what Slate writer Dahlia Lithwick
thinks is weird?

A politician considering the constitutionality of a bill she would be voting on.


I have been fascinated by Christine O’Donnell’s constitutional worldview since her debate with her opponent Chris Coons last week. O’Donnell explained that “when I go to Washington, D.C., the litmus test by which I cast my vote for every piece of legislation that comes across my desk will be whether or not it is constitutional.” How weird is that, I thought. Isn’t it /court’s/ job to determine whether or not something is, in fact, constitutional? And isn’t that sort of provided for in, well, the Constitution? In 2003, O'Donnell said of the Supreme Court that "it's kind of like we have the nine people sitting there in Washington who have a constitutional monarchy and that is an abuse of the system." So I do wonder a little whether she's claiming that her view of what's constitutional trumps theirs. Not a lot of space for checks and balances in that reading.

Emphasis in original

There you have it. The potential constitutionality of a bill should not be a concern of a legislator, as it's somehow against checks and balances for an elected official to worry his pretty little head about that.

Oh and it "trumps" the courts. Never mind that both legislators and judges (and executives) take the same oath to protect and defend the constitution.

So of a legislator can't take constitutional concerns in their votes why vote at all? Why not have judges decide if a bill or even an agency has met the "legislature’s own publicly stated commitment to welfare" and adjust accordingly?

Lithwick's repeated confusion is a bit scary.

The message that the Obama administration is repeatedly pushing unconstitutional legislation is clearly important to O'Donnell—and important more broadly, too—and so, like you, I've been trying to understand what she's trying to say.

Huh. So Lithwick sees no potential constitutional questions of legislation that say... makes it illegal to not purchase a private government-approved health insurance. I guess in her world the government can and should have the authority tell you to buy a good or service. And not only that but such a thing is so patently obvious that anyone questioning the conditionality of that is incomprehensible.

Lithwick is either being quite disingenuous or is impressively thick. She seems unable to understand the simple concept of "I don't want to vote for something that's unconstitutional."

One wonders how Lithwick would react to a comedically unconstitutional bill. Like say one that would establish Lutheranism as the official Federal religion, eliminate military barracks and quarter the troops in local private housing, remove trial by jury, and allow cruel and unusual punishments.

Apparently in Lithwick's world legislators should not look at said bill and vote no, merely because they think it's unconstitutional. It's not their job to determine that.

They should vote on the bill independent of those concerns and then it can go to the courts to decide if it meets constitutional muster.

More broadly Lithwick clearly thinks that the unwashed masses have no place in determining "constitutionality". If a Senator has no authority to go "Huh, this law looks illegal I'm voting no," then an angry yokel has no place to protest the actions of his government.

That job's for the courts.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Some very Scary Math

What happens if you plot federal spending versus median household income?

Well you get a very interesting and very frightening chart.

From 1967 to about 2000 the trend is linear. Then after 9/11 and Runaway Republicna spending the slope jumps up, showing spending outpacing income.

Then.... then the real nightmare begins, under Democratic congressional control the line goes beyond vertical. Income drops and spending shoots right up.

Powerline has other thoughts.

The obviously unsustainable explosion in federal spending that the Democratic Congress has embarked upon since 2007 is the central issue of our time. Among other things, it is the genesis of the Tea Party movement. That which can't continue, won't; the only question is whether sane hands will take over the tiller and restore some sort of balance, or the federal government will crash in a fiscal disaster.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Oh... joy. I knew Styen would have something depressing to say, and boy was I right.

here he is via via Ed Driscoll Talking about the latest de facto state religion.

Take this no-name pastor from an obscure church who was threatening to burn the Koran. He didn’t burn any buildings or women and children. He didn’t even burn a book. He hadn’t actually laid a finger on a Koran, and yet the mere suggestion that he might do so prompted the President of the United States to denounce him, and the Secretary of State, and the commander of US forces in Afghanistan, various G7 leaders, and golly, even Angelina Jolie. President Obama has never said a word about honor killings of Muslim women. Secretary Clinton has never said a word about female genital mutilation. General Petraeus has never said a word about the rampant buggery of pre-pubescent boys by Pushtun men in Kandahar. But let an obscure man in Florida so much as raise the possibility that he might disrespect a book – an inanimate object – and the most powerful figures in the western world feel they have to weigh in.

Aside from all that, this obscure church’s website has been shut down, its insurance policy has been canceled, its mortgage has been called in by its bankers. Why? As Diana West wrote, why was it necessary or even seemly to make this pastor a non-person? Another one of Obama’s famous “teaching moments”? In this case teaching us that Islamic law now applies to all? Only a couple of weeks ago, the President, at his most condescendingly ineffectual, presumed to lecture his moronic subjects about the First Amendment rights of Imam Rauf. Where’s the condescending lecture on Pastor Jones’ First Amendment rights?

True liberty requires the realization that others will use it to do things that you find offensive and repellant. I'm talking about things that do not hurt anyone else or infringe on another's rights, like say burning your own property, or writing a book critical of a group. Free people will do things that go against your religion and your core convictions.

That's just how things are.

If you try to "correct" this. If you use speech codes and such to enforce niceness... then you have a place where offensive speech and blasphemous acts are not covered by free speech.

From there you do not have freedom of thought and expression.

Go theocratic statism. Either a state religion or a religion of state it's all the same.


Firearms culture is growing back into the public conciousness.

From a shooting based reality show. To open ads in men's magazines.

A few years back, I would never have imagined a men’s magazine catering to young men (some even say metrosexuals) would be advertising evil black rifles. Fantastic. Oh and go get your man card.

Today I saw another minor addition. Cracked magazine is rather funny but it is decidetly "mainstream" counterculture. Whatever that means.

A poster for Dolemite bears this as the caption: WARNING: Poster teaches at least two incorrect lessons about firearm safety.

Heh. Yup casually making jokes about the Four/Three Rules.

It's notable because the joke is really only funny if you know what the safety rules are, or at least that there are safety rules.

Edit: And just to show some of the neat stuff Cracked can have: The 9 Most Mind-blowing Disguises in the Animal Kingdom

Monday, September 20, 2010

How screwed up is the UK?

Well, even a Knight can't have a sword over there.


Sir Terry Pratchett and a friend made a very impressive sword (scroll down) and now he has to hide it.

Pratchett has stored the sword, which he completed last year, in a secret location, apparently concerned about the authorities taking an interest in it.

He said: "It annoys me that knights aren’t allowed to carry their swords. That would be knife crime."

That's because you're a subject Mr Pratchett. They don't trust you.

But I think he gets that from the second link:

I recognise their tone of voice; it is the headmaster enraged because the fifth form are being cheeky. There is no shame because they know they are right even if, in some cases, they are on the right. Jeers, sneers and smears and, of course, repeatedly, adhominom arguments are all, therefore, fair enough.

In every case there was a chorus that forecast, more or less the end of the world. Well, here we are and if the world is ending it would appear to be for other reasons. People, you and me, are not trusted. The right doesn't like us because we don't do what we're told by our betters, and the left doesn't like us because it secretly thinks we would be on the right given half a chance and a lottery win. And both think we should not make our own decisions, because we might make the wrong ones.

Pratchett's talking about suicide here (something that preys on the mind of a man with a terminal degenerative illness) but it's striking how universal his words are. From a man that wants to be able to kill himself, to a man that wants to be able to defend himself, or have his own money or business.

It all comes down to the State telling you no, "you are not trusted". And thus we have the author who cannot own his own sword and in time (if he lives) will not be trusted with his own money.

Via the Ace of Spades Overnight Thread. Which has quite the British theme tonight.

A flying Humvee?

Sure why not?

It's at least less insane than a flying tank.

Might actually merely be a slow helicopter with a weak engine, low range, poor handling, and horrible procurement cost, unsteady of a giant disaster.

Oh and making a ground vehicle have the helicopter grade maintenance hours...

Still it looks cool, which I suppose is most of the justification for the program.

Via Ace.

Remember when I used to write about insane military hardware instead of gripe about the leviathan? Good times.

It's got a brutal honesty at least.

The British government has a new proposal to help their poor subjects.

Your employer hands your paycheck the government and they dole out your stipend.

Double meanings for dole and poor intentional, obviously.

It has the brutal honesty of redistributive statist: there's no such thing as private property, wealth, or commerce. There is no private sphere, there is nothing beyond the reach of governance. Anything that appears to be privately owned is merely an illusion granted via the state's grace.

Oh and you can bet that the English subjects will still have to pay their various sales taxes and VATs. It wouldn't be fair otherwise.

But Joanna notes a problem with this idea:

On a more serious note, such a scheme would, structurally speaking, put every last wage-earner on the dole. And -- human nature being what it is -- why bother working if you get paid either way? It's yet another move toward keeping the populace complacent and docile by making the fight too hard for all but the truest believers.

Clearly there's a solution to this, an employment mandate. A goverment board will deem if someone has permision to not work, those people will get public assitance until they are able to work.

The rest will have to work as part of their duty of supporting the state, and the workers will be happy knowing they're guaranteed a job and state support.

Hmm... this somehow sounds familiar.

Here's a helpful hint...

If you're bussed to a protest rally and your handed a sign, make sure you can explain why you support what it says.

Because someone might just ask you.

Like say you're holding a sign that says "Beck = Coward" well... you should have an answer, and you certianly shouldn't blink in confusion, read your sign in surprise and then let yourself be meekly led off by your handler.

Mean old Breitbart and his questions and cameras.

Hat tip: Rand and Glen

I'm reminded of the reversal of Glen's old "A Pack, not a Herd" line, here we're seeing a herd not a pack, again.

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Just six of us but that worked out fine.

Roberta has the scoop... As it happened.

Gonna lie down now, wrenched my back last night and those wooden chairs didn't help.

But you don't go to the Brewpub for the chairs.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Every Three Seconds

Imagine if you will a person being killed every three seconds.

Count that off 1.. 2... 3... Gone.
And repeat, every three seconds again and again and again for four years. That comes to about 45 million people.

Mao's Great Leap Forward killed 45 million people in four years.

In other words:
11,250,000 per year
30,800.82 per day
1,283.37 per hour
21.39 per minute

And yet for many Communism is quirky and lovable and just needs to be done "right".

How is it that Fascism is forever (and rightfully so tainted) but Communism gets off?

This is only the "Great Leap Forward". There was also the Hundred Flowers Campaign (where "healthy criticism" was quickly deemed "harmful and uncontrollable"), the Cultural Revolution (*only* 1.5 million), and the aptly named Anti-Rightist Movement ("re-education through labour" and "in some cases death").

And that's just China. What about Russia, Cambodia, Cuba? The Holodomor in the Ukraine. North Korea?

Back to Andrew Stuttaford:
That helps put all the posters of Chairman Mao that decorated Western campuses back in the 1960s into some sort of context. Sadly, the attitudes that made such posters so popular are still with us today.

That would be like having a Hitler poster on your dorm wall just after VE day.

Well, maybe atrocities and murders don't count when it's Chinese that die. Lord knows Japanese WW2 war crimes don't get the same play as German or even US ones.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


Doc Zero has a peice on the growing controls that our "betters" place on us. For our own good you see.

Political control is what’s killing us. It is expressed in hundreds of ways: high tax rates with carefully tailored exceptions, massive bailouts, laws rigged to favor government-controlled industries, restrictions on resource development, and a vast poppy field of subsidies and penalties. The Democrats have added thousands of pages of fabulously expensive legislation since Obama took office. Two messages echo through those pages: Obey and be rewarded. Resist and be punished.

Who are the President and his congressional allies, to lecture us on what products to buy, or investments to make? Who are they to demand even more of our wealth to fund their next round of grand designs? Their failure is obvious and complete. I don’t believe any group of brilliant central planners can legislate prosperity… but if such a group exists, it sure as hell isn’t this bunch.

It’s not surprising that command economies are weak. Business is a thing to be pursued and won. Control is a thing to be feared and avoided. A pile of stimulus dollars, dangled on the end of a string, is not a revenue stream.

Tam takes a longer view.

Imagine for a moment that you are sitting down with a group of average Americans from, say, the first decade of the 20th Century. And you try and tell them that, within the lifetime of their grandchildren and great-grandchildren, the federal government would regulate by fiat everything from the size of their toilet tanks to the chemical composition of the paint on their child's bicycle. The ones that didn't think you were joshing would laugh you out of the room.

As the Silicon Graybeard said in a recent post:

We are strangling in a bureaucracy with a Code of Federal Regulations that has grown like a bacterial culture. A nation that was founded by a constitution that fills about 14 printed pages in today's technologies, passes financial reform bills that go over 2000 pages, health care bills that go almost 3000 pages, and more. Each bill creates hundreds of new regulations, which are so poorly written they have to be refined by hundreds of court cases.


And how well can our "betters" spend our money?

Well In LA they spend $111 million to "save or create" 54.5 jobs. Do I even have to do the math?

It'd be cheaper and more effective to just drive around throwing sacks of cash out of the back of trucks. But it's not about the money, it's about a dangly carrot and the stick for those of you that don't get with the program.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Yes I'm sure this kind of compasionate thinking will reduce terrorism...

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer thinks that maybe we should ban Koran burning.

So we have a restriction of free speech, a de facto establishment of a religion, and giving into people who use terrorism to get what they want and why? Because someone in the world might get angry at what you do and respond with violence.

I wonder how this'll square with the ruling that it's okay to burn the US flag.

Who cares what you do with your property and your right to political speech, someone could get hurt!

So it's basically like every other bit of nanny-statism. You're too dumb to handle yourself, let mommy-gov take care of you.

I fear how alone he is and if this would ever make it to the court.

Now that's a gun.

Steve at the Firearmsblog shows a .50 BMG gun that was a true labor of love.


Monday, September 13, 2010

A bad combination.

Vain and opressively thin-skinned is no way to go through life... even if you're the president.

Glen Reynolds looks on the bright side of this pentulant man-child's ganster government: But then, “futile, if thuggish” seems like a pretty good description of this Administration in general.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Madmen and Liberty

Is the Koran burning stunt just a... stunt?
At least we know this, the nutty Rev Jones is having fun tweaking the media. To the media's annoyance.

“So will you say you’re going to burn a Koran anytime you want press coverage?” snapped a reporter with a German accent…

“You’re just using us! We should all leave!” someone yelled from deep in the media pack.

Silence – for a moment. “Yeah! Let’s all leave!”

Jones’s response: “Fine, we’re not press hungry, go!”

But no one moved, until Jones turned and shuffled back to the church.

And the media is wallowing in it.

Well, maybe not the whole media, there is one notable exception.

Of course it's not just the media that jumps when a guy with a book and a lighter says boo. Here's Victor Davis Hanson's thoughts.

We are reaching the point where the damage done to America’s image by 50 book-burners is outweighed by the damage done by hypersensitivity on the part of the United States government, which hopes to assuage the hurt feelings of those abroad who equate that tiny number with our culture at large — often in an abjectly hypocritical fashion. We know where this leads — to endless efforts to micromanage all elements of American life to protect the sensitivities of those who, by act and deed, are far more intolerant of different religions and cultures.

Already we’ve seen the omnipresent Imam Rauf suggest that, if he were not to get his selfish way, then nebulous, omnipotent radical forces abroad would be upset, and consequences for our troops would follow. His time would be far better spent either lecturing Saudi financiers to stop funding hate-filled madrassas and mosques or, even better, galvanizing world opinion over the carnage in Chechnya, where Russians used a level of violence against Muslims in Grozny that we have not seen since Mr. Assad leveled Hama.

If our leaders don’t relax, cool it, and stop these weird presidential “teachable moments” and all this stooping to editorialize about local irrelevancies (cf. the beer summit, the Tony Robbins–like escapades of the ubiqutious Imam Rauf, the line about Arizona law enforcement supposedly deporting the innocent “out to get ice cream,” etc.), we will devolve to the level of psychodrama. Indeed, this brilliantly entrepreneurial book-burning pastor has taken our government down to that level as it is. What’s next? Heaven forbid a gang-banger in East L.A. and his 50-person tribe should start sporting anti-Islamic insignia on their chests. Or Mr. Rushdie should quite rudely publish a sequel to The Satanic Verses. Two more inappropriate Danish cartoons? Is the Cabinet going to start devoting 3-4 hours a week to apologetic commentary directed at the Islamic world for the rude and uncouth among us?

Radical Islamists surely hope so.

And Richard Lowery wonders who is the real madman? ... Nixon?

Richard Nixon famously had his “madman theory” during the Vietnam War. He wanted the North Vietnamese to believe he was irrational (not such a stretch, as it turned out) and ready to do anything to end the war. Faced with this dangerous lunatic, the North Vietnamese would beg for peace.

The madman theory didn’t work out for Nixon, but it has now become the strategy of a slice of an entire civilization. Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the leader of the Ground Zero mosque, says failing to build the mosque will threaten “national security” by empowering Islamic radicals. Practically everyone in America urged Pastor Terry Jones not to burn a Koran to avoid provoking Muslims around the world. This is the “madman theory” writ large: Don’t offend Muslims for fear of their wholly unhinged reaction."

"The danger is that threats of violence will intimidate us into limiting the ambit of freedom in the United States. It isn’t such a long step from saying Jones’s pyromania endangered national security to forbidding it for our own protection. In Europe, it can already be a crime to criticize Islam. This constitutes the importation of Islamic prohibitions on blasphemy that are used to stifle debate and inhibit reform."

"One day, perhaps, a Terry Jones will be invited as a performance artist at the Islamic equivalent of the Tate museum to “shock the Muslim bourgeoisie.” One day. Civilizational change doesn’t come quickly — the West’s escape from feudal backwardness took centuries and depended on fortuitous social and historical circumstances. In the meantime, we can’t be beholden to the dictates of madmen.

Though we might already have a form of defacto blasphemy laws...
Not only has the President and several high ranking cabnit members weighed in on this but now the FBI is interested.

Richard Fernandez wonders if others will follow Jones' lead.

What happens if the Administration’s fears of copycats come true? What if people in small or large groups forever mark September 11 by burning Korans starting with 2010? What then? The President’s blustering may have set up a Gessler’s Hat. When leaders push an unpopular policy by fiat they are bound to inspire defiance for its own sake. Sometimes a little thing can be made into big cause simply because nobody knows when to stop.

Though you don't really need to do anything, just make the threats and the media will come running.

We seem to be looking, then, at a case of a story that didn’t need to be a story at all, until the media turned it into one and the American government itself made it a bigger one. There’s probably someone somewhere in the world burning a Koran for one reason or another every day. If they don’t post it on YouTube it didn’t happen, though, and if the media doesn’t pick up on it, rioters don’t take to the streets of Kabul. No media coverage, no administration weighing in, no riots.

Jones may be obscure, but he’s evidently not stupid. While the Andres Serrano comparison remains apt, all this brings another figure to my mind: P.T. Barnum. The famed showman and circus founder knew how to manipulate his fellow man, and Jones, with his Mark Twain facial hair and his constant story changes, seems cut from the same cloth. “Every crowd has a silver lining,” said Barnum, and Jones has definitely figured out how to draw a crowd. Oh, don’t get me wrong here, his Koran burning is crankery of the first order (so was Serrano’s pictorial), but it’s crankery that either intentionally or accidentally is creating a teaching moment for the world. And here’s the lesson: Man threatens to burn Koran, sparks riots and gets his country’s flag and his own effigy burned, and has the world waiting on his every word.

Notice I didn’t say “Man burns Koran…” The mere threat is enough, because the possibility of riots and destruction in response is all too real.

He finishes with the quesiton:

And second, is it really worth trying to change serious national security policy to appease anyone who’ll riot and burn you in effigy for just threatening to burn a book?

It's not just national security policy. "Apeasing" in this case would require blasphemy laws. Free speech, ugly and stupid speech is still speech, would have to be curtailed in the name of "protection".

It's a real test to see who is okay with that idea. But hey, at least it'll get the nanny-staters and the Islamists working together... again.

Update: Fooled you!

Pastor: Now God’s telling me not to burn the Koran

I think, wish, and hope that we’re done with this guy now, but one more note before we leave him for good. Jones didn’t expose anything about jihadism that we didn’t already know; what he did expose is how pathetic and sensationalistic the media can be (we knew that too, of course, but the sheer extent of it in this case is astounding) and how weak the government’s defense of free speech remains whenever jihadis start getting restless.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A difference of Givens

Roberta X takes on the latest, among many, Nanny State craze.

And yes, it's .gov telling you what to do, but it's not like that narrows it down. It's something that all the "right" states have and Indiana not doing it places them as an "island of regression".

Hmm... doesn't narrow it down either.

Oh fine, it's about smoking, in bars.


Bar owners -- and their customers, too -- are adults; the people who own those other open-to-the-public places are, too (and in the case of, say, bus stops, they kind of are The People). Why not trust them to make up their own minds? And if there's an outcome you'd rather see, Mssrs. Brown and Turner, why don't you try messin' with their heads from that bully pulpit you've got, rather than using the threat of fines and force?

Emphasis added.

The answer is clear, to the Nanny-statist, the common rabble are not adults, and therefore cannot be trusted with making up their own minds. It's because they cannot be trusted that force must be levied against them.

Somehow I think Roberta knows that.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Paranoid, Petulant, Pitying, Bizarre, Unscripted and Unlearning.

Glen Reynolds has a great roundup of the President's crackup and whining about people saying mean things about him.

Yes, the US elected a man-child who gets angry at people being critical of him.

Good Labor day.

Had some friends come in from Buffalo and spend the weekend with them. The weekend was cool and cloudless and had a nice breeze.

They came in on Friday evening and we ate at Naked Tchopstix in BroadRipple.

Next day after getting some bagels we hit the range. Snap caps are great shooting training. They're machined metal that simulates a cartridge and are good for identifying and reducing flinch. My two friends had not shot handguns much and it was amazing how well it worked to have them shoot mags mixed with live rounds and snap caps.

From my own experience I knew they worked but it's cool to see others learn with them too. How it works is that the shooter does not know the gun will fire when they shoot and when it doesn't fire they can see how much they flinch, when it does fire it comes as a "surprise".

After that we hit the freshmarket and cigar store. And cooked up some real good rib eyes and sirloins on charcoal.

A light rub of large ground salt, cumin, black pepper, olive oil, raw sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and A1 was used. Also some apple wood chips were soaking in water with some white pepper, cumin, and bourbon (not my real good stuff). These soaked chips were then put on the coals just before the steaks.

Salad was spinach and romaine, I think, with onions and strawberries and used a nice sauce with honey, mustard, balsamic and oil. Sourdough bread was with the meal too.

For the next day we hit the Rib America Festival. If you like ribs I really recommend going to it. I wasn't ever a big fan but it converted me. And if you do go, go earlier rather than later. It fills up quick and after 1:30 the lines become far too long. Another way to beat the lines is to split up and go to different booths and then get back together to swap the ribs.

After that was a nice walk through downtown. Went from Military Park to Monument Circle. There we stumbled into the Ride For Justice just as it was starting.

Saw more bikes there than ever before and was good to see people organizing and making themselves heard. The whole case is really questionable. I mean a cop drunk on duty kills someone and injurs two others and then there's what happened with his blood test.

From there went North though the War Memorial parks. Pictures don't do the Memorial justice. Either inside or outside.

If you're ever in Indianapolis, you've got so see this place. Awe-inspiring is not an exaggeration.

From there we went to the library and back around the Cathedral and took a funny walking path back East to the Canal, and went down that to complete the loop.

From there we drove to Broad Ripple again and had a light dinner at Canal Bistro, on the same canal as before.

After that returned home for a relaxing evening looking at the water. having cigars and fine bourbon. Was a real great time.

Saw them off this morning and then the day heated up, of course.

It was great having you guys over. Looking forward to Thanksgiving.

Holistic Control vs. Mean Old Reality

James R. Rummel looks at how it's all connected.

First a bit about his background and his personal experience running a charity specializing in helping past victims of crime learn how to defend themselves. You'd think the "party of the little guy" would love that idea...

When one cannot outrun a 12-year-old child, and one is so frail that the kid can beat them to death without breaking a sweat, a can of pepper spray isn’t going to do anything but take up room in their pocket.

So my goal was to instruct my students on the safe and effective way to use firearms in their defense.

Elders crippled by arthritis, people suffering from partial paralysis, and even people confined to wheelchairs all learned how to shoot in order to save innocent life.

And yet I was branded as a monster by many Liberals I encountered. Because the active self defense portion of the charity course focused on firearms, I was even accused of scheming to increase the death rate! All because I advocated private ownership of firearms.

The vast majority of my students were women, and yet it was said that my purpose was to facilitate the brutalization of women because I was putting more guns on the streets. Most of my students were minorities, yet I was branded a racist because the majority of violent crime victims were minorities. The fact that there were no other options open to my students to resist violent criminal attack, that law abiding people by definition do not commit crimes, was completely ignored in favor of mindless moralizing.

I was a bad person, evil right down to my socks, because I was acting counter to one of the most dearly held shibboleths of Liberal thought: The mere act of owning a firearm turns people into violent lunatics!

And now to the broader field.

Even though they have enjoyed a dominance in Washington that they have not seen in decades, and used that power to make some of their most cherished policies reality, they can’t keep from shooting themselves in the foot. Many, perhaps even a majority, of their ideas simply don’t work in the real world. Attempts to enact them reduce freedoms and rights in the US, and even produce the exact opposite effects that are promised by the Liberals.

Yet, even so, they refuse to give up on them, and adjust their thinking to what is embarrassingly obvious.

Above is outlined my own opposition to Liberals and their ideas. What does this have to do with Glenn Beck and the Tea Party? What are the goals?

As I can attest by personal experience, media bias is pervasive and omnipresent. The Left is given what amounts to free publicity, while attempts are made to present Conservative ideas and policies in the most unflattering light possible. It appears to me that one of the unstated goals is to reveal this bias in all its ugliness.

He then goes into the power of this ability to set the narrative and how it enables unpopular, unworkable ideas and their repeated application: "The failure of Liberal policies has been on display for far too long, and yet they continue to bitterly cling to unworkable ideas. When are they going to get a clue? The only reason they have managed to get as far as they have is due to the fact that the media is shilling for them."

Read the rest.

Friday, September 3, 2010

"The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father"

Steven Green looks at what out "elites" are saying.

In short they're very, very dissapointed in all of you.
Take this gem:

Some thoughts on those angry voters. Ask parents of any two-year-old and they can tell you about those temper tantrums: the stomping feet, the rolling eyes, the screaming. It’s clear that the anger controls the child and not the other way around. It’s the job of the parent to teach the child to control the anger and channel it in a positive way. Imagine a nation full of uncontrolled two-year-old rage.... Parenting and governing don’t have to be dirty words: the nation can’t be run by an angry two-year-old.

Parse that for a bit.

Take the given

1) "Parenting and governing"
2) "It’s the job of the parent to teach the child to control the anger and channel it in a positive way."
3) "nation can’t be run by an angry two-year-old."

The conclusions?

1) You are a child, unfit, undeserving of your votes or opinions.
2) It is the job of goverment to be your parent (I suppose big brother was a bit on the nose).
3)As your parent it is their job to control you and channel you in a positive way.

And as Green points out in the reveal Peter Jennings said that in 1994.
At least he waited until after the election.

Gee, it's almost like these guys hate the idea of a limited representational republic where the common rabble actually have a say in what the goverment does.

Where'd anyone get that idea?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Well someone's letting his tyranny flag fly...

Oh Govenor Patrick you poor man, his reaction to a large protest by the rabble?
"It’s a Free Country. I wish it Weren’t"

Well, it's not like you're in a position of power to try to make your wish a reality.