Saturday, April 28, 2012

Blog Comment Of The Decade

I'm sick and tired of messing with bureacracies. 

I'm tired of the "city" of Richland Hills.  I'm tired of their code enforcement Nazis, and their chief, a little guy who is surfing the First Baptist Church Of Euless website every time I've walked past his office. 

I'm tired of the Department Of Transportation making up arbitrary rules about how far my guys can travel, how long they have to rest, what kind of paperwork they have to have on board, and blah, blah, blah.  Look up CSA 2010 when time permits. 
I'm tired of getting emails from online Sherpas who promise to help me navigate all the CSA 2010 bullshit. 

The government digs a ditch, and then those who dug the ditch go into the private sector and set up shops to help you navigate the ditch. 

I'm tired of The Federal Reserve printing money so George Bush, Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and John Boehner can pay their bills without passing legislation or tax increases.  I'm disgusted by the (recent) revelation that The Fed has an entire "education" wing that goes out to propagandize school kids, but can't debate or even discuss their policies with a political party. 

I'm sick of Barack Cokehead Obama carrying out raids on medical marijuana dispensaries. 

I'm p.o.'d about all the highway patrolmen suddenly pulling over people around Loop 820, a stretch of interstate where I've seen very few accidents.  This has nothing to do with safety, and everything to do with revenue.  Between my workplace on the northside and my meeting area on the west side, I typically see 4 revenue generators with radar guns.  It's nuts, nuts, nuts. 

Glenn Reynolds recently linked to a Reason magazine blog comment that I think is freakin' brilliant.  Here goes: 

It's not a coincidence. Politicians, pundits, and professional, revolving-door bureacrats are 100% revenge of the f***ing nerds. Every loser in high school or college that just knew he was smarter and better than everyone else is in DC pacticing politics, writing about politics, and arbitrarily f***ing up the lives of everyone else with regulations just because they can.

Yep.  And we're going to keep putting up with it for how much longer? 

The picture of bureaucratic hell came from here. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

George Will is transforming. Barack Obama is evolving.

Go here to read about George Will's slow transformation from Conservative to Libertarian. 

Go here to read about Barack Obama's slow transformation from opponent of gay marriage to gay marriage opponent.  (He claims that his stance is evolving.) 

Seriously, this is good news about George Will.  Even when I totally disagree with him, I like his writing style. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Liberty Book Discussion Group - "Anthem" by Ayn Rand

Thursday, April 26th at 7:30 p.m., we're going to get together at the Downtown Cowtown Barnes & Noble (401 Commerce Street) to discuss Ayn Rand's "Anthem", a mini-masterpiece about one man's struggle against a collectivist state. No struggle on your part, though, as you can easily finish the book in one sitting, and the complete text is available on numerous websites.  You still have time. 

I'll deliver a brief history and summary of the book, followed by discussion time. Before we wrap up the conversation, we'll vote on which book to read and discuss in June, and elect someone to lead that discussion. We intend to hold these book discussion events every other month, so "Capitalism And Freedom", "Atlas Shrugged", "Economics In One Lesson", "The Rational Optimist", "The Fountainhead", "The Revolution: A Manifesto", "The Road To Serfdom", and "Eat The Rich" all await us.

If things go as they usually do, we'll probably wander across the street to The Flying Saucer to continue the discussion, but more loudly. 

Hope to see you there, and when you're reading "Anthem" be grateful for your light bulbs. (That's a joke. If you don't get it, you will after you read the book.

Speaking of light bulbs, now that I've re-read "Anthem", I see something even more sinister about these damn things.....

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Is it remotely possible that shortages are caused by price controls?

Don Boudreaux has read an article in the New York Holy Times, an article that speculates that maybe, perhaps, possibly, there is a potential theoretical smidgen of a chance that Bolivia's shortages are caused by price controls. You know, kinda like our current high minority unemployment rate is caused by price controls. Here's what Boudreaux wrote to the Times....

Regarding your report on the chronic shortages of consumer goods in Venezuela (“With Venezuelan Cupboards Bare, Some Blame Price Controls,” April 21): of course these shortages are caused by price controls. By preventing prices from telling the truth about underlying conditions of supply and demand, such controls spread economic lies. Producers and consumers are thus misled into acting destructively rather than productively.

Price controls, though, are only the most ham-fisted maneuver used by politicians to distort prices in order to mislead the public about market realities. Another favorite ploy is to condemn and threaten “speculators.” Consider Chavez himself. He irresponsibly increases the supply of the Venezuelan bolivar and then, when the inevitable inflation begins, combines overt price controls with a bellicose vow to punish what he sneeringly calls “bourgeoisie speculation.”

Such blame-shifting is very near a constant with politicians.

It’s worth noting that, although the President of the United States hasn’t the power of Generalisimo Chavez, Pres. Obama’s attacks on speculators are just as politically opportunistic and economically ignorant – and potentially as destructive – as are any such attacks issued by Latin American dictators.


Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030

Ouch.  And his attempt at reducing the price of healthcare hasn't even kicked in yet. 

The Obamabanana poster came from The People's Cube.    The George Mason University coffee mug shwon below was a gift from Dr. Ralph. 

For Henry and Patricia

Will Campbell is the author of "Brother To A Dragonfly", which won the National Book Award in 1978. 

He was the inspiration for Reverend Will B. Dunn in the Kudzu comic strip. 

He earned a Doctorate from the Yale Divinity School. 

Any of those three things would be enough to earn some serious respect.  Campbell was also a civil rights worker in the Deep South during the 60's.  He spoke out against the Viet Nam war when almost everyone around him disagreed.  This was back in the day when "liberals" were against any war, not just Republican wars.  They didn't trust the government, no matter which team was running it. 

Heck of a guy, that Will Campbell. 

My friends Henry and Patricia are getting married this weekend in New Orleans.  I was planning to be there.  They even asked me to get ordained so I could perform the marriage ceremony.  (I got 'er done through the Universal Life Church.)  Because of some personal complications, I'm going to have to think about Henry and Patricia from afar during their wedding. 

Had I been able to be there, my part of the service would've been along these lines, boiled down and condensed considerably.....

Here's Will Campbell, writing about marriage in "Brother To A Dragonfly".  The italics are mine:
If there is a body, a community, which is truly Church, or even claims to be Church, why should it be the executor of Caesar’s documents? What is a marriage license but a legal contract? And what does any legal contract promise and offer except the right to sue one another at another time and place before another of Caesar’s agents? Perhaps such contracts are socially necessary but what does that have to do with us? And even if we are not Church now but want to become Church, free from the demands and legality of Caesar, why not start by returning all of his documents and refusing ever to do it again? “No, Mr. Caesar, that is not our understanding of what marriage is all about. If you must protect yourself and your citizenry in this fashion you may continue to do so. But not with our help and blessing. Let the faithful come before the altar of the One we must serve rather than, and before, you. And acting on His, and only His, authority we will pronounce them man and woman, husband and wife.”
Too Libertarian?  Probably.  Did Henry and Patricia know that's what they'd get if they asked me to do their wedding?  Probably. 

Back to Will Campbell:
I was never again to say, “By the authority vested in me by the State of Tennessee.” If my authority as a priest comes from the State, then I have no authority at all. From that time on, I began all weddings by saying, “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s. If you have a license, we will sign it at this time.” And then saying to the couple, “Now what we have just done is to endow you with a legal contract. It has nothing to do with Christian marriage. It is nothing more than a contract between you and this state which gives you the right to sue one another if you should ever desire to do so.” And the document is tossed casually, and sometimes contemptuously aside. “Now, the passage which begins ‘Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s continues. ‘And render unto God the things that are God’s.’ And the wedding begins at this point.”
Lord have mercy, I would have enjoyed contemptuously casting that document aside.  Especially during Jazzfest in New Orleans.  Oh well.  Back to Will Campbell:
Maybe one day I will yet follow my conscience and refuse to sign that document at all, ask the couple to have a Justice of the Peace sign the Contract of Caesar. And on a number of occasions there have been no such documents. And by the authority vested in me by Almighty God I have pronounced them man and woman, husband and wife. And I defy Caesar to question that they are married. But those without the document are required to spend an extended amount of time with me and with one another in making sure they are ready for such radical trust and commitment. For they do not have the protection that the legal contract would afford them. They cannot sue one another. They have only themselves, the community if there be one, and the source of the authority which so joins them. Those who have come with no license have not come flaunting liberation but bearing witness to servanthood. They are not products of a new morality but an anachronism of an old morality, a testimony to “Jesus Christ is Lord. Hallelujah!” (from Brother to a Dragonfly, 213-214)
You get the idea. 

Henry Farrish, my friend since the 4th grade, and Patricia Starnes, my friend since freakin' kindertgarten, would've come away from the ceremony knowing that they were by-God married.  I would've tied that knot and yanked on it in front of the entire Ninth Ward to make sure it was going to hold. 

Henry and Patricia have spent 40 to 45 years with me, and I am assured that they are ready for this type of radical trust and commitment. 

They don't need the protection of a legal contract.  Anyone who hangs out with them needs diabetes medication to keep from going into insulin shock. 

They will not sue each other. 

They have something that so many people do not have.
I do so wish them all the best. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Right To Work States, 2008 Red States, and Swing States

My employer, Jukt Micronics, is about to open another factory at a location on the east coast.  (One of the east coast states is going to give us a deal on land, building, and equipment that will make the deal you gave us on forklifts look downright stingy.  Thank you so much, all you little people in the 99%.  PLEASE, please, please, keep voting for Democrats.) 

While I was researching the area, I looked up a map of the Right To Work states.  Places where you aren't forced to give money to a labor union. 

Mitch Daniels of Indiana has somehow managed to convert his state from Hoffa to Choice since this map was produced.  That's the only exception I've found.  Color Indiana red.   

The work map looked familiar. 
I looked up an electoral college map of the 2008 elections. 

The only outliers are Hawaii, Nevada, Montana, Iowa, Missouri, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, Indiana and Florida. 

Ok, here's a map of what CBS calls the Battleground States for 2012:

Of the outlier Union Vs. Choice states, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, and Iowa all made the CBS list.  (Some other Battleground/Swing State lists included Missouri and Indiana!) 

If the economy is supposedly the #1 issue, then whether or not a worker should be forced to give money to a union is the filter through which the issue is seen.
Fascinating stuff, I think. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

On the Sunday morning political talk shows

Here's a sampling of the Sunday morning political mess my TIVO is recording while I'm typing this, compliments of Hot Air:

NBC’s Meet the Press: David Axelrod, Obama campaign chief strategist; Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), Rep. Peter King (R-NY); E.J. Dionne, Brookings and Washington Post; David Brooks, New York Times; Helene Cooper, New York Times; Chuck Todd, NBC

ABC’s This Week: Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME); Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX); Keith Olbermann; George Will, ABC; Donna Brazile, political strategist; Matthew Dowd, political strategist; Peggy Noonan, Wall Street Journal

CBS’ Face the Nation: Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT); Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX); Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD); Tom Comburn (R-OK); Norah O’Donnell, CBS; Stephanie Cutter, deputy Obama campaign manager; Eric Fehrnstrom, senior adviser to Romney campaign; Melinda Henneberger, Washington Post; Major Garrett, National Journal; John Dickerson, CBS; Cornel West, Princeton University; Tavis Smiley, talk show host

Fox News Sunday: Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT); Gov. Mitch Daniels (R-IN);

CNN’s State of the Union: David Axelrod, Obama campaign chief strategist; Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL); Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD); Dana Bash, CNN; Jeff Zeleny, New York Times

I watch this junk so you don't have to. 

I can sometimes predict what those folks are going to say long before they say it. 


Believe it or not, Meet The Press usually includes David Brooks of the New York Holy Times because he's an economic conservative and will provide "balance". 

You might remember Brooks as the guy who called the ouster of Utah Republican Senator Bob Bennett "a damned outrage". 

Please note that the Court Eunuchs Of The ObamaMedia give Teleprompter Jesus programmer David Axelrod a slot on both CNN and Meet The Press. 

ABC's "This Week With George Stephanopoulos" is one of the most astounding examples of media bias you'll see this year.  Truly astounding. 

First of all, can you get drunk enough to imagine ABC airing a program called "This Week With Karl Rove"?  I can't either, but the two Stephanopoulos and Rove essentially had the same White House job.
George's guests this week include Susan Collins of Maine, one of only three Republicans to vote for Obama's Porkulus Bill. 
He's got Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who once took to the podium in Congress to complain of the National Weather Service giving hurricanes nothing but "lilly white" names, and proposed giving hurricanes names like "Keisha, Jamal and Deshawn".  She has also described the Tea Party as racist. 
Keith Olbermann, so left-wing rabid and so afflicted with all the logical symptoms of that condition that even Al Gore won't give him any more money, is on board this morning. 
George Will is actually an interesting guy and is worth listening to.  Will came out in favor of weed legalization last week. 
Staphanopoulos has another Clinton Senior Advisor dropping in: Donna Brazile.
Matthew Dowd used to work for Texas Democrat Bob Bullock.  Then he worked for Texas Republican George W. Bush.  After that, he gained some notoriety by writing long pieces apologizing for the harm he did to Democrat John Kerry.  Matthew Dowd used to be a flip-flopper, but then he changed his mind. 
Rounding out the discussion with George is Reagan Speechwriter and Republican journalist Peggy Noonan.  Four years ago, Noonan endorsed Barack Obama.
Is anyone at ABC even pretending that they aren't in the tank for Obama and rank Statism of the worst sort????

Out of the entire unholy lot of Talking Heads broadcasting this Sunday morning, hosts and guests, Mitch Daniels is the only one of the bunch who comes within missile-launch distance of being a libertarian. 

Here's a modest proposal for the Fox Business channel, the closest thing we have to a libertarian-ish network (they cancelled Napolitano's show, but still air John Stossel).  It would be called "What The Hell Were You Thinking?"  Here's a sample lineup:
Fox Business "What The Hell Were You Thinking?"  John Jay Myers (Libertarian - TX); John Stossel, Fox Business; Gary Johnson (Libertarian - New Mexico); Nick Gillespie, Reason Magazine; David Axelrod, Obama campaign chief strategist;  Four libertarians strap David Axelrod into a chair and review the Obama record on the economy and civil liberties while asking "What the hell were you thinking?"  Next week's guest: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. 
I don't know about you, but I'd watch it. 

The media brainwashing picture came from here.