Saturday, November 15, 2008

Quantum Of Solace and Casino Royale

Remember the scene in Fight Club where movie projectionist Tyler Durden splices frames from dirty movies into the reels of family films?
Last night I went to see "Quantum Of Solace", the new James Bond movie. Somewhere in all of that racing, fighting, exploding, and shooting, they may have spliced in a plot.
I'm not sure, since my eyes have a tendency to blink.

In the opening chase sequence (a Bond movie trademark), the editor only allows each scene to last for .09357 seconds. I had no idea what I was watching, which angle I was watching it from, or who things were happning to. But then, I'm old.....
Every now and then someone would pop in and mumble something about exploiting the workers to make T-shirts.
M's headquarters had a really cool screen that could almost do as much as CNN's Election Night map. Ever since Tom Cruise first used a similar screen in Minority Report, all government headquarters in movies are equipped with blue tinted glass walls where projected data can be manipulated with Leonard Bernstein-ish conductor gestures.
There was a lot of broken glass in this movie. Perhaps more than in all the other Bond films combined. Good subject for further research.
The bad guys had a hotel in the middle of the desert. Yes, a hotel in the middle of the desert, roughly modeled along the same lines as the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. How does the hotel get power, you ask? From highly explosive hydrogen. (HINT: FORESHADOWING).

Remember the infamous scene in Goldfinger where the Bond girl is flea-dipped with so much gold that it doesn't allow her skin to breathe, and it kills her? Well in Quantum Of Solace, it happens with oil ! Motor oil ! Black Texas crude ! Get it? Get it? They're making a political statement ! OIL IS THE NEW GOLD !

It was nice, though, to see a Bond villain hiding behind a bunch of phony Green "Save The Planet" virtue. I don't know who that reminded me of.

But enough about Quantum Of Solace. I'd only give it a 4 on the 10 scale.
This is an email about what happened a couple of years ago when I went with my daughter to see "Casino Royale", the previous James Bond film. I've cleaned up some of the grammar and deleted a few names. Other than that, this is what really happened.....

1) Late Monday afternoon, I was in our main office talking to our company President and one of the owners. They mention that one of our factories is missing a box truck that was being used on an installation job in Mississippi. This is the factory that could lose The Concorde if it didn’t make a lot of noise, so I figure the box truck will turn up. I don’t worry about it, although it’s part of my job to worry about it. The factory in question is bi-polar, and has family of origin issues. (In case you're wondering, the factory mentioned here has been cleaned up, straightened out, and has new management. The manager who presided over this mess two years ago went on to be an Involuntary Guest Of The State. Huntsville Prison, I think.)

2) Later that night, my daugher, The Future Aggie, decides she’s willing to go see Casino Royale with me. This is a rarity, since she’s reached the age where she wants all her friends to think she was raised by wild dogs in the forest, or that she was conceived like Athena springing forth fully formed from the forehead of Zeus. I’m excited by the opportunity to go with her. She makes me put on different clothes and she also invites a friend, so as to inoculate herself against any un-coolness should she be seen by any of her other Paschal High School friends.

3) The opening credits - where the Bond silhouette is shooting the playing card people, and they bleed hearts and spades and clubs - that was impressive.

4) The flashbacks to his 1st two kills were well done. It apparently takes two kills to achieve Double-O status in the British Secret Service.

5) The chase scene through the snake/mongoose gambling pit, the aerobic workout in the construction site, and the fight in the embassy were all way cool. I can’t imagine Pierce Brosnan pulling that off.

6) Judi Dench starts chewing on James Bond for getting caught on film at the embassy. Then I get a call from the Yazoo City, Mississippi police department. (Of course, I had politely turned my phone on vibrate.) I leave for the lobby of the theatre. They want more info on the truck. They think they’ve seen it. We converse, and I tell them things they already know.

7) I come back into the theatre. Bond has apparently won a sportscar and the sportscar’s former owner’s wife. Bond works on bedding the wife, but gets a phone call and has to leave the wife. I get another phone call and have to leave the movie. It’s our Plastic Shop plant manager, who shouldn't have anything to do with this mess. He says the Hood County Sheriff’s Department has been trying to get in touch with me. I explain that I was on the phone with the Yazoo City police department, and Yazoo City thinks they’ve seen it. What the hell is Hood County doing in the picture? Isn’t Hood County what surrounds Granbury, Texas? I take the phone # and go back to the movie.

8) I get back into the theatre. Bond has moved onto another hottie, and this one is supposed to be an Accountant (sorta like the Bond move where Denise Richards was supposed to be a Nuclear Physicist…..snicker snicker.) They’re going to defeat terrorism by winning at Texas Hold’em, which makes about as much sense as defeating terrorism by invading Iraq, I guess.

9) The cell phone rings again. I’m mad enough at this point to achieve Double-O status in the British Secret Service. Two kills would be just the beginning. It’s the Hood County Sheriff’s department. They think they have our company’s truck. But the make and model don’t match. Then the lieutenant I’m talking to has to hang up to handle an emergency call. I leave the lobby for the theatre again. My child is pissed. She will no longer catch me up on what’s been happening in the movie. I turn my phone off, because the battery is dying.

10) James Bond loses 10 million righteous and holy dollars, apparently because he mis-reads a bleeding eye “tell”. The Future Aggie’s phone goes off about 8 times. The Future Aggie, unlike her father, doesn’t answer her phone during movies. The calls are coming from home. From her mother. Finally, her mother text-messages The Future Aggie something like TELL YOUR FATHER TO CALL ME NOW ! ! ! ! The hottie accountant won’t give James Bond 5 million more as a buy-in.

11) I go back to the lobby (by this point, I’m quite friendly with the mentally deficient guy that they’ve hired to tear the tickets) and I call Mrs. Whited Sepulchre. She has had conversations not with the Hood County Sheriff’s department, but with The Granbury Police department, and wants to tell me about these conversations in laborious detail. I start finishing all of her sentences for her, and tell her that I’ve got it covered. Mrs. Whited Sepulchre is pissed. She wants to fully experience the True Crime Moment.

12) I go back in the theatre. Something has happened with poison, a cell phone, and a glove compartment defibrillator. Bond has somehow gotten money to get back in the game. Everybody raises the pot to ridiculous amounts. The River, The Flop, and The Other Thing I Can’t Remember are aces and eights. The large African dictator puts down a full house, two aces and 3 eights. Someone else has the same thing, but with three aces. (I’m sure I’ve gotten this wrong, because I’ve already named 5 aces.) Then Bleeding Eye puts down 4 of a kind. I’ve forgotten to turn my phone onto vibrate, and it goes off louder than an A-rab funeral. It’s the Granbury Sheriff’s Department. They have our box truck. Positive I.D. this time. Instead of politely leaving for the lobby, I discuss all of this inside the theatre. Everyone around me is pissed. They want me to return to the Trailer Park from whence I came, since I obviously don’t know how to act in a movie. But I get to see James Bond fill an inside straight, which is impossible, and can’t be done.

13) I leave for the lobby, talking to Granbury cops all the way. Some guy left our box truck on private property near Granbury. The landowner thought he recognized the driver, but not the truck. The Landowner went to question the driver. The driver put a large padlock on the back door and ran away. Drugs are probably involved. I make mental arrangements to go to Granbury on Tuesday morning, not just to get our truck back, but to have the first pick of the drugs. I return to the theatre, where three rows of people hold me in total contempt. Bond is nekkid and Bleeding Eye is beating the daylights out of Bond’s privates with a knotted rope. I can sympathize and empathize. Nobody will sit with me.

14) I settle into my chair. The phone rings. Again. Loudly. A lady three rows down reaches levels of pissed off that I didn’t think were possible. I’ve once again forgotten to turn it back on vibrate. Nobody else comments, since no one else remains close enough to my violence-plagued seat to notice.

15) I go back into the lobby. It’s the manager who runs the factory that loses box trucks. He explains that the box truck was sent with an install group on a job to Mississippi, the install group stopped at the Casinos in Shreveport (not to be confused with the James Bond Stylish Casinos in Montenegro), and everyone did well and behaved themselves except the truck driver, who lost all of his per diem money gambling. He also had a hard time getting up the next morning (drunk), and was no good as a worker for the rest of the trip. He got sent home (to Texas) early. The idea was to get him home with the truck and then fire him. But he stopped in Vicksburg and charged a lot of stuff to his Company Credit Card at the Casinos there. Shoulda been home Friday in the truck. He and the truck weren’t missed until Monday. The driver was probably just depressed. I explain that I’ve got it covered, hang up, and go in the theatre. Bond is resigning his job via email, something I considered immediately.

16) The Hood County Sheriff’s department guy returns from his emergency call, and immediately calls me. I go back to the lobby. We discuss things. I ask about his family. The Hood County guy gets my whole story. He tells me that he has relatives in Yazoo City. I tell him that my mother is from Yazoo City, Mississippi, and I’ve also talked to people from there tonight. We make lots and lots and lots of small talk. Screw the movie. I hang up, and play video games in the lobby until the movie ends. The Future Aggie and her friend liked the movie a lot. I can’t wait to see it.

P.S. – I got the box truck back this morning. No drugs in the back, but LOTS of empty beer cans in the cab. Huge disappointment.

In case you're wondering, when I went to see Quantum Of Solace I left my cell phone in my truck.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Caption This Awkward Picture

I need a caption for this picture.
Dr. Ralph won the contest last week.

The competition committee has spoken.
And while I have not always agreed with Dr. Ralph, or those he supports, I want to be the first to congratulate him and encourage all Sepulchre readers to celebrate his captioning victory, whether you are a Libertarian or a Big Government Statist Who Never Saw A Big Government Program He Didn't Love.
This victory has been a long time coming.
Twenty years ago, Democrats weren't even allowed to use the Comment Fields on this site, mostly because it didn't exist. But that's not going to stop me from wallowing around in some fake emotion.
When I got word of the competition committee's decision, I openly wept.
Seeing Dr. Ralph win the caption contest sends a message to our nation's youth that all things are possible, regardless of your race, income, or political affiliation.
Only at is Dr. Ralph's story possible.
This is a great day to be an American.

Milk And Mises (Ludwig Von)

Here it is, boiled down into a five minute clip.
If you don't understand it, that's okay.
If you don't understand it, don't email the guy who made the video.
Just do us all a favor.
Stop voting.

The Department of Energy has a 24 BILLION DOLLAR BUDGET?

If you want to know more about Ludwig Von Mises, click here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

More On President Obama's Cabinet

A couple of days ago, I had a good time suggesting personnel for the Obama Cabinet. I made it as ridiculous as possible in an effort to get in some cheap laughs.
A friend of mine sent me this link today, and after further research, I'm afraid that it is legit. Banish children from the room before clicking on the link. Take off your glasses before clicking on the flow chart. Move all drinks away from your keyboard.

Al Gore as potential "Climate Czar"?
John Kerry as Secretary Of State?
Colin Powell, who is experienced at State and Defense, in Education?
Dick Gephardt and Tom Daschle as anything at all?
Caroline Kennedy at the U.N.?
Howard Dean at Health And Human Services?

Max Cleland and Larry Summers are good folks.

But Lord have mercy, what a crew.
I think my list would do less harm....

Where Will Malia And Sasha Obama Go To School?

The Obama kids will soon be going to a new school.

Unless their parents are rich, they will have to go to the Washington D.C. public schools, which are among the worst-performing in the nation.

Fortunately, the Obamas are very rich. Barack has written multiple best-sellers and Michelle made $121,000 as V.P. Of External Affairs at a hospital. As soon as Barack was elected senator, Michelle's salary was re-evaluated, re-assessed, reconfigured, deemed totally inadequate for a person of her obvious skills, and bumped up to $316,000. (It had nothing to do with Barack winning a Senate seat.)

But I digress. The Obama children currently attend a private school in Chicago.

Jimmy Carter was the last president to put an actual living, breathing child into the Washington D.C. public schools. Bill and Hillary announced early on that Chelsea would be attending the Sidwell Friends School, and were denounced in some quarters for not following Jimmy's lead in supporting the local public school system. Here's an excerpt from a 1992 article in the Washington Monthly:
The Gores send their children to private school. So do the Quayles. So does Secretary of Education Lamar Alexander. In fact, none of the 67 top education policymakers in the Bush (Sr.) administration sends his or her kids to D.C. public schools. Instead, the Clintons will be hearing well-deserved praise of the academics at the National Cathedral School, of the sincere service ethics of Quaker philosophy at Sidwell Friends School, of the respect for individualism at Georgetown Day School, among others.
Nobody held this private school decision against the Clintons for very long, since Carter sending his daughter to the public schools was considered the act of a madman.
But we're paying for these schools, aren't we?
The question is, why?
And if the overwhelming majority of high ranking Washingtonians in government have abandoned the public schools, why not privatize all of them, give D.C. residents a voucher (for about half of what the schools currently cost per pupil) and end the charade?

Here's the Washington Post on the cost per pupil in the D.C. schools....We're often told that public schools are underfunded. In the District, the spending figure cited most commonly is $8,322 per child, but total spending is close to $25,000 per child -- on par with tuition at Sidwell Friends, the private school Chelsea Clinton attended in the 1990s.

$25,000 per child. Texas Freakin' A&M doesn't cost that much for tuition, room, board, other food, books, snacks, fees, parking, and tickets to football games to watch the Aggies lose.

Here's Nick Gillespie at Reason magazine, generally the source of all things good and holy:

Mother Jones has a letter from a Washington, D.C. resident pleading with President-Elect Barack Obama that he "seriously consider sending your kids to DC public schools—and not a charter school, either, but a full-on traditional neighborhood public school."

Stephanie Mencimer notes in passing (and with strange forgiveness) that Obama's kids attend private school in Chicago, and she grants that D.C.'s public schools are "crappy" and complains about lack of resources without mentioning that the schools spend more money per pupil than just about anywhere else in the country. "I understand," she writes, "that choosing a school is fraught with anxiety and it's the most private of decisions."

In an update, she says:
At Barack Obama's first press conference as president-elect, Chicago Sun-Times reporter Lynn Sweet asked whether Obama would be sending his children to private or public schools in Washington. He replied that no decision has yet been made and that he and Michelle would be "scouting out schools."

More here. Which is another way of saying, Hello Sidwell Friends! or one of the other ultra-exclusive and ultra-expensive D.C.-area private schools.

Which is to say that Obama (as he has already demonstrated via his own kids) is in favor of school choice, at least when it comes to his family (he has said a variety of phoney-baloney platitudes about not "walking away" from public schools and creating more charters, etc.)

With that in mind, and as a parent with two kids in public schools, I'd like to write a letter to Obama too:

I understand that choosing a school is fraught with anxiety and it's the most private of decisions. Please extend and expand the same educational choice you and your family exercise with ease by giving school-age children more and better options. Making every school voluntary by giving vouchers equal to the current average spending per pupil that can be cashed at any educational institution you would be willing to send your own kids to.

This is, of course, not going to happen. Indeed, look for the Obama administration to follow in the footsteps of the Bush administration and further centralize and federalize control of the K-12 system. In fact, Obama has spoken repeatedly about the need for universal, taxpayer-funded preschool, which will have the added bonus of straitjacketing a thriving and decentralized and choice-driven industry.

I'm incredibly conflicted on this subject. Many hardcore Libertarians believe that there's no legit reason for the government to be involved in education. The less extreme view calls for government issued vouchers that could be used at whatever school the parents choose. I know a lot of public school teachers, and they all, without exception, agree that the administrative costs of their schools are ridiculous.

On the other hand, having grown up in a private (segregationist) academy, I took a lot of pride in finally getting my daughter into a Fort Worth public school. Sending her to the local public school on Fort Worth's East Side was out of the question, though. That place is a Gladiator Training facility. Some strings got pulled, and she went to the public school near TCU.

On the other hand, when she came home from school each day, I asked her what she had learned. The answer was invariably "Nothing. We sat through this period, watched a movie in this class, hung out in the gym during this class, and I worked Sudoku's during this class." Or words to that effect.

On the other hand, she made a lot of minority friends.

On the other hand, diversity is not the point of an education, no matter what those people say who send their kids to Sidwell Friends in D.C.

On the other hand, I got to enjoy a warm fuzzy feeling of righteousness. Perhaps this deluded feeling is what left-wingers experience all the time.

Anyway, Clarence Page has a great editorial about the Obama education options, and he's much calmer than I am. Mr. Page wrote the best of the bunch. Please try to read it.
Here's Bob Parks at Black And Right.
Here's a brief excerpt from Investor's Business Daily: He (Obama) recently told an interviewer that he opposes school choice because "although it might benefit some kids at the top, what you're going to do is leave a lot of kids at the bottom."
Not being left behind are Obama's daughters, who attend the private University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. There, tuition ranges from $15,528 for kindergarten to $20,445 for high school. When asked about it during last year's YouTube debate, Sen. Obama responded that it was "the best option" for his children. They had a choice Obama would deny others.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ron Paul, The Fed, Confederate Money, and Inflation

"Inflation is an increase in the money supply" - Ron Paul

A group of Libertarians is meeting in Dallas on November 22nd to protest outside the Federal Reserve Bank.

It's not quite as easy to understand as a protest outside The White House, or a nuclear power plant, or Lockheed-Martin.

Let me try to explain.....

This is Confederate money.
It was "backed" by cotton.
Back in the day, the idea of paper currency that wasn't redeemable for any commodity seemed a bit silly. Without a government guarantee that you could swap the paper for something rare, currency was just a piece of paper.
Confederate money was essentially a Gift Certificate for a set amount of cotton. (Various members of the rebellious planter class contributed the cotton.)

The South lost the war, and the money lost its value (the Union blockaded the Southern ports, killing the cotton market, plus England saw the war coming and had stocked up on plenty of cotton ahead of time). By the end of the war, people were wallpapering their houses with this stuff; the Confederate printing presses were running 24/7 from trying to cover all the debts and pay all the soldiers.
Backing a currency with cotton didn't work out very well since the Confederacy eventually gave in to the temptation of backing their currency with cotton that had not yet been planted. These dollars were "worth 95 cents on the dollar in gold when first issued, (then) Confederate currency dropped to 33 cents by 1863, and 1.6 cents by Appomattox (April 9, 1865). May 1, 1865 was the last active trading in Confederate notes at 1,200 for 1."

In other words, Confederate dollars became valueless. But here's a Confederate dollar selling on ebay for $40. Even though this dollar can no longer be swapped in Atlanta for a bale of fiber, it now has value.
Because it is scarce.
They aren't printing any more of them.

Here's a 1923 Silver Certificate. Note the text below George Washington's picture...."One Silver Dollar Payable To The Bearer On Demand". This piece of paper was a Gift Certificate for a piece of silver that was worth (in 1923) one dollar. You can't take it to the bank and redeem it for silver any longer, but it still has some value.
Because 1923 silver certificates in mint condition are scarce. Collectors want them. This same bill in mint condition sells for almost $50.00 (adjusted for inflation, that's roughly what a dollar was worth in 1923 !)

Here is a Nolan Ryan/Jerry Koosman 1968 baseball card.

Unlike the Confederate currency and the Silver Certificates, these things didn't have any real value when they were printed. Either they were a freebie with the bubble gum, or the bubble gum was free with the baseball cards. However, one of these in mint condition now sells for $1600.00
Plenty of kids had them in 1968 and threw them away because Nolan Ryan hadn't gone into the Hall of Fame, or pitched his famous 7 no-hitters. Back then, Nolan Ryan had to work at an Alvin, Texas gas station in the off-season.

Now these cards are very scarce. You could say that a Ryan/Koosman mint condition rookie card is like a Gift Certificate for $1600.00, right?
But what would happen if someone was exploring in the basement of Jerry Koosman's mother's house, and found 20,000 of these and suddenly released them into the marketplace?
Could each of them still be swapped for $1600.00? Or do you think their worth would decline?

Which brings me to Marvel Variants....My boss is getting rich because he took his childhood obsession with comic book collecting and used it to wisely invest in something called "variant" comics. The details are too tiresome to go into here, but Variant Comics are rare. My boss has them. Very few other people do. Ten years ago. very few people even knew what they were.
But every time someone finds the "Kid Colt Outlaw" mint condition "Variant"comic book at a garage sale, has it evaluated and puts it on the market, the value for that particular title declines a bit. The "Kid Colt Outlaw" variant isn't quite as scarce as it was on the day before the garage sale.

Speaking of things that are no longer scarce.....the dollar bills shown below were once more difficult to find than they are now.

The U.S. Currency used to be the worldwide benchmark for something called "The Gold Standard". Wikipedia, as usual, has the most succinct explanation for how it was supposed to work with our currency and the financial systems of the rest of the world: After the Second World War, a system similar to the Gold Standard was established by the Bretton Woods Agreements. Under this system, many countries fixed their exchange rates relative to the US dollar. The US promised to fix the price of gold at $35 per ounce. Implicitly, then, all currencies pegged to the dollar also had a fixed value in terms of gold, However, under the fiscal strain of the Vietnam war (AHEM), President Richard Nixon eliminated the fixed gold price in 1971, causing the system to break down.
In my early childhood, one of these dollars could be exchanged for 10 Coca-Colas. Then we totally disconnected the currency from any gold price. The paper in my wallet isn't backed by anything other than goodwill. Now it's difficult to find a vending machine willing to swap 2 Coca-Colas for a dollar.

Now these damn things are everywhere. Every one of them that my parents saved is now worth 50 cents.
Here's a Reddit discussion page where some bewildered people are wondering why 12 packs of Coca-Cola have disappeared, only to be replaced by 8 packs at the same price. None of the commenters get it. They try to blame it on the grocery stores !
Unfortunately, the supply of Coca-Cola has remained more or less the same. The money supply has increased. Coke, therefore, is worth more. Dollars are worth less.

Here's Texas Congressman Ron Paul:

The root of our current economic malaise, the weak dollar, the high price of oil, and the collapse of the housing market, comes about because almost no one understands what inflation is. Inflation is an increase in the money supply, which occurs by various methods, the printing of currency, low reserve requirements, Federal Reserve open market operations, etc.

But why would the government want to print more money?

Until the cause of inflation is understood, no effective strategy can be undertaken to combat it. The problem, however, is that the government does not want inflation to be done away with. Inflation benefits debtors and harms creditors, and the United States government is the biggest debtor of all. The United States government, the banking monopoly under the Federal Reserve System, and politically-connected firms and industries are the first entities to take advantage of new money injected into the system, before prices increase.

And who does this hurt the most?

As the increased supply of money begins to chase the same number of goods, prices rise, and the average American suffers. Poor and middle-class Americans are always the hardest hit by inflation, as the weakening dollar makes the imported goods that many Americans depend on more expensive.

So exactly how much money have they printed since Nixon shut down "the gold window"?

Good Lord In Heaven.
What has ending the Gold Standard and shutting "the Gold window" and printing all this paper done to the value of a dollar?

And that's why a group of Libertarians are gathering to protest outside the Federal Reserve Bank in Dallas on November 22nd.

They're stealing from you, but you never notice anything missing. Things just cost a little more than they used to every month, but you don't get a bill from them in the mail. You'll never hear the burglar alarm go off.

Wake up.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Suggestions for President Obama's Cabinet

There's been a lot of speculation about the makeup of President-elect Barack Obama's cabinet.

Since Obama will probably surround himself with former associates, Democratic party lifers, and a couple of token Republicans who have reached waaaaaay across the aisle, the following candidates are a best case scenario, pending Congressional approval:

Secretary Of State: Reverend Wright would be an excellent choice. Since so many other nations have spent the last eight years saying "God Damn America", why not send out a representative who shares their viewpoint?
Secretary Of The Treasury: Let's go with senatorial candidate and former Saturday Night Live funny man Al Franken. Despite advocating more government involvement in just about everything imaginable, Franken neglected to pay $70,000 in taxes to the various states where he worked as a comedian and guest speaker. He overpaid by a similar amount in New York and California. Do you think Franken might be irritated and embarrassed enough by this episode to simplify the tax code? Probably not, but it's worth a try.

Secretary Of Commerce: Nancy "Greater Tuna" Pelosi. If she can exempt her donors and constituents and (ahem) stock picks from troublesome regulations, there's no telling what she could do for the rest of the country. Secretary Of Housing And Urban Development: By default, it should go to Chicago slumlord Tony Rezko, the guy who increased Obama's Urban Housing by 10 feet.

Secretary Of Education: Vice President is too limiting for a man of Joe Biden's obvious intellect. He should share his gifts with our children.

Secretary Of Agriculture: Despite his stated fondness for the ethanol/biodiesel boondoggle, Willie Nelson would make a great Secretary Of Agriculture. The man has studied weed for most of his life.

Secretary Of Defense: William Ayers. No contest here. For those who want to shrink the size of the military, what better choice than someone who once plotted to blow up the Pentagon?

Secretary Of Transportation: Ted Kennedy. Who do you think of when you hear about cars and bridges?

Secretary Of The Interior: A no-brainer. Al Gore. Parachute him into the middle of the Nevada desert with some thermometers, some pens, and a legal pad. Ask him to record his findings and get back to us in 8 years. Attorney General: Let's bring John Edwards out of his self-imposed exile. He might not be the best lawyer, he might not be the smartest lawyer, but dang it, he'd look good....

Secretary Of Homeland Security: This Department needs someone who has previously defended The Motherland From The Alien Invader ! Someone who has defended our wives and daughters from those who would do them harm ! Someone like the former "Community Organizer" for the Ku Klux Klan, West Virginia Senator (D) Robert Byrd !
I don't have a feel for the Departments of Energy, Health And Human Services, Labor, and Veterans Affairs.
I'm sure that you people have some suggestions....

Veteran's Day Poster

The picture came from here, the misquotation of George Orwell came from here, I made the poster here, and edited the picture here.
None of these activities had to be approved by anyone.
Plus all of it was free, thanks to services provided by free-market capitalists who want me to see their advertisements.
These services, among other rights and freedoms, were fought for and defended by my father (Army), his four brothers (Army and Navy), and my father-in-law (Army).
Happy Veteran's Day

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Libertarian Purity Test

This is a good one.

Click here to take The Libertarian Purity Test.
Interesting stuff, interesting questions.

Please pay attention to the preface where he distinguishes between Privatization and Sub-Contracting.
Please note his assurance that this isn't some sort of McCarthyite purging device to separate the sheep from the goats.

I scored a 91, although I might have only scored an 89 if hooked to a lie detector.
The questions begin with common sense statements like "Is Government Spending Too High?" (Doh!) and end with "Should The State Be Abolished?" (Hmmmm....What other entity would protect me from Fembuttx, or my other enemies?)

Post your results in the comments.