Friday, August 15, 2008

Free Association Friday, belated Saturday edition

Way back in October, I went out on a limb and predicted this.  The current presidential election will probably cost $1,000,000,000.00

If these hunches keep paying off, someone is going to make a fortune during football season.

Thanks to Robert Love for for the link. He's got a great general economics blog, and I wish he would post more often. 

Robert has also posted a link to an interactive graphic that ran on the New York Times site that shows how they calculate the consumer price index. If you go there and spend less than five minutes clicking on the various pieces of the pie, then you have the soul of a ditch-digger. Almost any category of stuff you could purchase for a household is inside that pie, growing and shrinking every day.  Mr. Love notes that "consumers spend the same amount (about 1% of total) on cable service as on doctor visits. The portion of consumer spending allotted to "computers" has declined 12% year-on-year."   Possibly because most of us now own one. 

Speaking of how some costs decline while others go through the roof.... Wal-Mart never gets enough credit for holding down inflation. Yes, the squeeze their suppliers. Yes, they don't pay their employees a penny more than they have to. And yes, especially for those at lower income levels, a lot of people are better off because of it. Not all of us can afford to shop at places with 600 kinds of cheese.

I've held onto this next link for a few months, waiting on a place to use it. Wal-Mart has been accused of a lot of things, but this one is a first: Someone named Peter Flaherty has accused Wal-Mart of being too liberal and politically correct. Let me try typing that again, just to be sure my fingers won't explode. Wal-Mart is too liberal and politically correct. Wal-Mart is too liberal and politically correct. Wow.

Speaking of Political Correctness, Dr. Rowan Williams - the Archbishop of Canterbury - recently declared that Christian doctrine is offensive to Muslims.  Here's Andrew Ian Dodge at Dodgeblogium:

Dr Rowan Williams also criticised Christianity’s history for its violence, its use of harsh punishments and its betrayal of its peaceful principles.

Muslims would probably get worked up over that.  The Spanish Inquisition and The Crusades are a major distraction from Allah's work of hijacking airliners, hand amputations, clitoridectomies, stoning adulterers, executing apostates, and all-around jihad.   

As a Baptist, I'm often offended by the Methodist practice of "sprinkling" converts, instead of total immersion.  If someone blows up a Wesleyan Student Center anytime soon, well, that means they finally pushed me too far. 

But getting back to Dr. Rowan Williams.... Perry de Havilland of Samizdata had this brilliant quote about the Anglican Archbishop last year.
Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams is like a compass-that-faces-south... always wrong but useful nevertheless because as long as he is dependably wrong, he can still be used when plotting a course.

I used to send emails copies of any of my Ultra-Libertarian posts, in hopes that they'd add me to their blogroll.  I never succeeded.  I eventually started groveling and wrote an epic poem entitled "Whoring For Links":

But before I posted it, without warning, Perry linked to something I wrote about the new trend for locally grown food.  So I put this online anyway:

When I began this little blog
To dissipate the Statist fog,
And fight against Bill Clinton’s bride,
My other goal was to provide
A Libertarian Intifada,
So I could be on Samizdata.

I said Thomas Sowell’s great!!
And criticized the Nanny State !!
I said Hayek’s pretty cool !!
And called Lou Dobbs a freakin’ fool !!
Yet all’s in vain because there’s not a
Single link from Samizdata.

I’m on Carnivals Galore,
Plus Satan’s Ho and Soobdujore.
Texas papers let me shine,
And so did Baptist friends of mine.
But there’s just one Big Enchilada,
That Limey blogroll - Samizdata.

I quoted Popper and Von Mises,
Laughed at those who think they’re Jesus,
I quoted Friedman (who’s now dead),
Plus, “Atlas Shrugged” and “Fountainhead”.
I get hits, but links? No, Nada.
Still no links from Samizdata..

But now I lay me down for sleeping,
And pray the Lord my soul is keeping,
‘Cause if I die before I’m waking
The Lord can have my soul for taking
To Heaven, Hell, or other strata,
My Blog is now on Samizdata !

But they still haven't added me to their blogroll.  What a bunch of ungrateful British pigs.  If it weren't for FDR and the Lend-Lease act, they'd all be speaking German.  And what kind of self-respecting nation still has Kings and Queens, anyway????  They should evolve into a pure democracy like us, so they can vote for their head of state.  What happens in their system if the next monarch turns out to be a total idjit? 

Which gets us back around to the beginning. 

Boy, I'm glad we'll have a chance to spend $1,000,000,000.00 to narrow our choice down to....Barack Obama or John McCain. 


Anonymous said...

Yeah, I know, getting a link from Samizdata is... er... not easy.

Even for a Limey like me.

The whole Crusades thing... I recall a few years ago a bunch of US Christians traipsed around the Mid-East apologising for the crusades to bemused folk in the street.

Rowan Williams has so totally lost the plot that he is beginning to make our future King look sane or the choice between Obama and McCain look pleasant.

He singled out the doctrine of the Trinity as something which upset Muslims. Now I'm no theologian but I fink ve haf ein teensy problemen here (in my war-film German). I mean the trinity is pretty central to Christianity, right?

Without it you're left with Jesus as Social Worker which is of course what socialists like Williams are into. Real Christians have faith in the Gospels. Williams has faith in the Gospels + Das Kapital. Oh, and whatever new-age, touchy-feely, multi-culti, Greenie crap is currently fashionable.

PS. I have never found "Limey" offensive. It celebrates a good idea of the RN back in the days when the RN wouldn't have stood for being dragged over a barrel by a bunch of deranged mullahs.

Google "Anglo-Zanzibar war". Yes it was done within the hour and yes, we made the buggers pay for the ammunition we used against them. That's the spirit!

The Whited Sepulchre said...


This is why I love Nick M being a part of this thing.

I bet it's this interesting when he orders a cheeseburger. His blog is Counting Cats, which you can access by clicking "Nick M" or by clicking "Counting Cats In Zanzibar" just above the world map in the bottom right hand corner of the blogroll.

Go there. Go there. Go there. Daily.

All that having been said, I believe you can be a Christian and still have doubts about the Trinity. The reasons why, for those who are taking a 7 day vacation or who are doing a long prison sentence, can be found in the comment field here:

You can be a Christian without believing in the 3=1 business, but you can't be a thinking human and worry whether or not the 3=1 business offends muslims.

Organized sensitivity is more offensive than any of the above.