Friday, February 25, 2011

Senator Rand Paul gives David Letterman an intellectual beatdown

You want to watch a true example of what happens when statist beliefs go up against conservative logic? Take the time to watch this 11-minute clip as Kentucky Senator Rand Paul completely dismantles every lamebrained argument that David Letterman throws at him. By the end of the interview, Letterman is reduced to admitting to the audience that he is completely outmatched... but that Rand Paul is somehow wrong in his arguments anyway.

Hopefully, a few of the clapping seals in the audience went away questioning their knee-jerk statist beliefs just a little bit. Kudos to Senator Paul for taking his arguments to a place where I'm sure they are rarely, if ever, heard.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Moral of the story: Don't bring a scimitar to a gunfight

One of the rising stars of the Republican Congress is freshman representative Allen West of Florida. West was a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army who made a name for himself in Iraq when he, shall we say, intensely interviewed an al-Qaeda suspect in order to obtain the information to head off an attack that would have killed numerous American soldiers.

This video, which was taken at a town hall meeting in West's Florida district shows why LTC/Rep. West is indeed a rising star. Watch as he dismantles a representative of CAIR, the Council on American/Islamic Relations who thinks West is being too hard on the Islamic religion. I thought my recall of history was good; watch and listen to what West does to make his case:

Hmmm, that takedown was so easy, it reminded me of this scene right here:

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Monday, February 21, 2011

"Private" Sacramento memorial becomes very public when the mourners assault a news crew

All you can do sometimes is shake your head in disgust.

At 2:45 on Monday morning, Chester Jackson was shot and killed in the parking lot of an IHOP in the Natomas area of Sacramento. Apparently, a verbal altercation inside the IHOP spilled out into the parking lot where the guns came out. Haven't they learned that nothing good happens after midnight?

Later that day, friends and family of the murder victim gathered in the IHOP parking lot for some kind of memorial service. Local news crews covering the story - including one from the local Fox affiliate - approached the gathering of people in order to get one of your garden-variety soundbites for the upcoming news coverage, i.e. "How did you know the victim?" "How do you feel right now?" "What was the victim like as a person?"

That is when the mourners turned into a mob. They began screaming at the reporter and his female camera operator. As the two news crewmembers backed away, the mob charged after them, including some "mourners" who ran there from another parking lot, and began their assault. The female camera operator was pulled by the hair to the ground and kicked in the face, while the male reporter was punched several times in the face.

I know news crews can seem invasive sometimes in their efforts to get a story, and I know the mourners were in a high emotional state to begin with, but there is no excuse for this assault.

The mourners kept yelling at the news crew that this was a private memorial service. If you want privacy, then hold your service at your home, or a church. If you choose to publicly gather at an IHOP parking lot where the crime actually took place, then expect there to be news crews and curious reporters.

So now, this so-called "private" memorial service (which again, took place in an IHOP parking lot at the scene of the crime) is being covered by not only all the local news stations, but also has a link on the Drudge Report, which at last count had over 27 million hits in the last 24 hours. Nice job keeping it private, geniuses.

These reporters are there for you to talk to the camera and tell us what a fine, upstanding citizen the victim was, and how he didn't deserve to be shot down like this - isn't that what we always see during these man-on-the-street interviews in cases like this? Instead, after witnessing the video of the beatdown of the reporters committed by people who consorted with the the victim, I am left with the impression that Chester Jackson probably had it coming. If you think I am mistaken and/or insensitive for looking at it that way, I suggest you take it up with his fisticuff-happy family and friends.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Cut spending, but only cut the other guy's program

When it comes to cutting government spending, this report of results from a Harris poll puts it best when it says that people want to cut down the forest, but keep the trees:
When shown a list of 20 areas of federal government spending, a majority of the public supports cutting only six of them and these do not include the big ticket items that comprise most of the federal budget. Furthermore large majorities oppose cutting Social Security or federal health care programs, which many economists believe are increasing at unsustainable rates.

One other interesting finding that may be noted by advocates on both sides of this debate: far fewer people support cuts in these 20 programs today than did so in 1980 when Ronald Reagan became president.
Read the rest if you truly want to see how schizophrenic and ignorant the public can be.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Another reason why Wal-Mart is evil

They make you steal:
[I]n the scruffy blocks around the corner of New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road in Northeast Washington, where the first of four Wal-Marts planned for the District would probably be built, the residents have more immediate, street-level concerns...

"There'll probably be a lot of shoplifting going on. They'll need a lot of security," Terriea Sutton, 35, said.

Brenda Speaks, a Ward 4 ANC commissioner, actually urged blocking construction of the planned store in her ward at Georgia and Missouri avenues NW partly because of that risk. Addressing a small, anti-Wal-Mart rally at City Hall on Monday, Speaks said young people would get criminal records when they couldn't resist the temptation to steal.
Has the world gone totally and utterly insane?

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

The Deficit, then and now

The tragic thing is that the "then" I am talking about is merely 2007. Watch this and cry:

When I see it all laid out like that, I certainly feel like I need a drink.

In true absurd fashion, however, statist WaPo columnist Dana Milbank hyperventilates today that that tiny little slurp taken from the last in the line of shot glasses will cost the country 1 million jobs.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Truly awful

I don't watch 60 Minutes on a regular basis, but stories I never miss are those filed by Lara Logan. Her reports from the front lines of Afghanistan have been can't-miss.

I was horrified today to learn that she was brutally and sexually assaulted in Cairo several days ago while reporting on the demonstrations there.

I pray for her full recovery, both physically and emotionally.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Monday, February 14, 2011

Joe McCarthy must be smeared; facts be damned

It has become a rote exercise in self-congratulatory political preening to bash Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin. Even many conservatives who should know better engage in McCarthy bashing. That is usually because most everything that people have ever learned about Joe McCarthy is not only incorrect, but usually 180-degrees from the truth. What people fail to learn is that after the fall of the Soviet Union and the release of thousands of its secret documents, we now know that McCarthy was right. But still, people are so trained to hate Joe McCarthy, that they have difficulty abandoning all that they have been taught over the decades and adjusting their views.

What doesn't help is when supposedly fact-based and objective newspapers get even the basics incorrect.

Yesterday, the Chicago Sun-Times ran an article about a photography exhibit that displays the photos of the recently deceased Milton Rogovin, who once worked as the librarian for the Communist Party of Buffalo, New York.

In its descriptions of Rogovin's life, the Sun-Times article carried this little nugget of information. Read it and see if you can find the three inaccuracies that I found:
Then the inevitable happened. In October 1957, Rogovin was caught in the net cast by the House Un-American Activities Committee helmed by Sen. Joseph McCarthy. It was the waning days of the Communist witch hunt, and the experience would change Rogovin’s life.
Give up? OK, I will help you out:

1. The House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) had nothing to do with the work of Senator Joseph McCarthy, who headed the Senate Committee on Investigations. McCarthy never served in the House of Representatives; he only ever served as a Senator.

2. Rogovin appeared before the HUAC in October of 1957. Even if Senator McCarthy had been miraculously able to head this House committee, he still would not have been in charge of the committee when Rogovin appeared before it. McCarthy had died in May of that year.

3. McCarthy's work was not a "communist witch hunt." The term "witch hunt" connotes an inability to find that which you are zealously seeking. The communist-sympathizing subjects of McCarthy's investigations were exactly what he purported them to be: Security risks working in sensitive positions within the federal government. And some of them even turned out to be actively spying for the Soviet Union.

If you have never been exposed to the truth about Joe McCarthy, there are two books that can set you straight.

Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism, by Ann Coulter, gives a good basic primer on McCarthy's work and the lies that have been accepted about it. Oh yes, I know, some of you might be experiencing your own rote and visceral reaction to my utterance of the name "Ann Coulter." Fear not, folks, for Coulter's chapters on McCarthy are chock full of these useful little superscripted numbers that reference something called footnotes (or endnotes) that can direct you to Coulter's primary and secondary sources which are listed in the back of the book.

Coulter's account of McCarthy is just one part of a larger narrative in her book about statist treachery in the United States. For a more detailed account that delves into just McCarthy, read the definitive book on the subject, Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies, by M. Stanton Evans.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Further evidence that Great Britain is done for

News stories like this always make me wonder how people like the police officials quoted in the article actually exist.

Homeowners in Great Britain are being urged by police to not block their windows with wire mesh. Why? Because burglars might be injured while trying to break in!!!

It seems that the local and national governments in Great Britain are doing everything they can to ensure that British citizens are totally left at the mercy of the dregs of their society. Always remember that we across the Pond often seem to be only a few years behind Britain's lunacy.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Obama math

President Obama sent his proposed 2012 budget to Congress today, and after reading the basics of it, you can color me confused.

Let us crunch the numbers:

The total budget is $3.7 trillion.

The total deficit in that budget is an all-time high $1.65 trillion

However, the Obama administration is bragging that the budget calls for a spending plan that will cut $1.1 trillion from the deficit over the next ten years. Again, that is over the next ten years. That is indeed a vast quantity of money, however it is not much to shout about when a simple division equation shows that the deficit reduction comes out to just over $100 billion per year over that ten year period.

So under this pathetic ten-year plan, we will be saving $100 billion a year, while just this coming year, the deficit will be $1.65 trillion. Whoopdee-doo.

If the deficit reduction was $1.1 trillion every year - not over ten years - then maybe I would be impressed.

How is it that little ol' me can figure this out, yet these ivy league Ph.Ds can't seem to figure out this simple equation?

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Respect your president! So sayeth Oprah.

It scares me to witness the ignorance displayed by some people as to their idea of what role government plays in our lives.

Oprah Winfrey put her ignorance on display the other day when she told President Obama's critics, “Even if you’re not in support of his policies, there needs to be a certain level of respect.”

No, there doesn't, and I won't do it; especially when "disrespect" to these people is simply disagreeing with them. But that quote from Oprah wasn't the one that made me shake my head in disgust the most. It was when she stated that the presidency is a position that “holds a sense of authority and governance over us all."

The hell you say! The only reason Obama - or any president for that matter - has any authority over anything is "We the People" and the states delegated it to him first. That's delegated, not transferred, not handed over, not surrendered. President Obama is my employee; he works for me. He holds authority and governance over the executive branch of the federal government.

Of course, Oprah isn't the only Obamabot celebrity to get this wrong. Who can forget the PSA made by a whole gaggle of Obama worshiping fools, including Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, who made this pledge:


"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Monday, February 07, 2011

Stop butchering our National Anthem!

In fact, gimme that microphone!

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Why I watch the Super Bowl commericals

Because there will always be gems like this. My whole family absolutely LOVED this, the best ad for the 2011 Super Bowl:

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Happy Birthday, President Reagan!

Ronald Reagan, the greatest American president of the 20th Century, was born 100 years ago today - February 6, 1911.

Our country is better for his having been born, and his having been our president.

God Bless.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Friday, February 04, 2011

Adventures in parent conferences

A friend of mine posted this hilarious, yet tragically true video on her Facebook page. I thought it was definitely worth posting here, as I have been on the receiving end at one time or another of the majority of the insipid statements made by the mother in this video.

This video sums up one of the major malfunctions of our educational system: enabling parents.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

When headlines conflict

Who has been paying attention to the extreme winter weather that is being experienced throughout much of the USA? Great Britain has had record cold and snowy winters as well.

Members of the Church of Global Warming have an answer for this. Incredibly, they contend that global warming is responsible for the record cold and record snowfall that is being recorded during the winter of 2010-2011! Read this headline and excerpt:
Climate Scientist: It’s ‘Reasonable’ to Believe Global Warming Is Causing Snowy Winters

A prominent climate scientist says it is reasonable to conclude that global warming has caused the unusually snowy weather in the eastern United States and Europe over the past two winters, but stresses that this is only a hypothesis that has yet to be definitively demonstrated...

“Here’s what happens and here’s what a lot of people get really screwed up on, and it’s straightforward,” [Scientist Mark] Serreze told “All right, so it’s getting warmer, and what is happening is that we’re not growing as much ice in winter as we used to be, but we’re melting a heck of a lot more in the summer than we used to...

“For example, the last two winters over the East have been cold and snowy,” explained Serreze. “So what happens there? Well, what you’re looking at is some kind of change in the atmospheric circulation, that basically you’ve got this cold, Arctic air plunging down—clearly, because that’s exactly what’s happening—and that gives you a temperature contrast and that’s what gives you the storms, okay?”

Got all that? But Chandler, you say, this Serreze is a scientist! He should know what he is talking about! Hmmm, maybe. But lets take the Wayback machine to the year 2000, and read another headline with excerpts and listen to another scientist talking about global warming and its effect on snowfall:
Snowfalls are now just a thing of the past

Sledges, snowmen, snowballs and the excitement of waking to find that the stuff has settled outside are all a rapidly diminishing part of Britain's culture, as warmer winters - which scientists are attributing to global climate change - produce not only fewer white Christmases, but fewer white Januaries and Februaries...

the warming is so far manifesting itself more in winters which are less cold than in much hotter summers. According to Dr David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia,within a few years winter snowfall will become "a very rare and exciting event".

"Children just aren't going to know what snow is," he said.

David Parker, at the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in Berkshire, says ultimately, British children could have only virtual experience of snow. Via the internet, they might wonder at polar scenes - or eventually "feel" virtual cold....
So which is it? Does global warming cause more snowfall, or less snowfall? Isn't it great when no matter what the weather, your theory has it all covered? I know several people - many of whom I consider to be friends - who are true believers in global warm... I mean climate cha... I mean climate disruption. When I show them contradictions like this, it just slides right past them, and they assure me that the majority of scientists in the world can't be wrong. Someone please tell me why it is so important to them that global warming, or any variation thereof, exists?

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, February 03, 2011

What was that about those calls for civility?

The right-wing Tea Party types are hateful people and they call for violence. How do I know? Because people like you see in this video tell me so.

One problem, though - me thinks their false accusations betray their projection of their own predilections for hate and violence, and yes, racism.

Just listen to what these supposedly peace-loving, tolerant, kumbaya kooks want to do to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas:

When you catch these people in an unguarded moment, you will always find that they are guilty of the very behavior for which they falsely accuse their counterparts. It never fails.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

February is here, and you know what that means...

Time for another 28 days of guilt and self-flagellation as we observe Black History Month. I object to meaningless gestures such as Black History Month, and I'm not the only one who feels this way. Watch this classic clip from 60 Minutes as one of my favorite actors, Morgan Freeman, chastises a befuddled Mike Wallace as he rejects Wallace's apparent insistence that blacks should be grateful that they get their own month. Watch and learn, kids:

I don't agree with Morgan Freeman on everything concerning politics, but he and I are totally on the same sheet of music on this topic. And what he told Mike Wallace is almost exactly what I tell my students every year when I get the inevitable questions from them about why I don't do anything or teach anything about Black History Month. I tell my students that there is no "black history." I tell them that this is a United States History class, and "black history" is part of American History. Is that not enough?

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Who has had enough of legislating by voting?

Yesterday afternoon, California's new (old) governor, Jerry Brown, gave his first (or ninth?) State of the State Address to a joint session of the California legislature. Last year, I was live blogging from the Assembly chamber gallery, but I was not able to obtain a ticket this time around, so I had to hear the soundbites on the radio and read the transcript along with the rest of the little people out there.

Since he was elected in November, and took office last month, Jerry Brown has been a bit of a wild card as far as indicating what his plans were as our new-old governor. Would he use his status as a grizzled politician to be his own man and do what he wanted to do - and special interests be damned - or was he going to stay true to form and continue to be the left-wing zealot he has always shown himself to be?

We apparently have our answer. Jerry Brown wants to raise our taxes, or at the very least, leave our tax rates at the extraordinarily high level they currently are. And the best part is that rather than being a man and taking a stand, he has punted his responsibility as Governor and has put the decision of raising taxes in the hands of the California electorate. That way, if, after the June special election, the people of California vote to keep our taxes high, Brown can shift the blame to us. "Hey, I didn't raise your taxes, you voted for it yourselves!"

Here is how Brown actually couched it in his speech yesterday:
My plan to rebuild California requires a vote of the people, and frankly I believe it would be irresponsible for us to exclude the people from this process. They have a right to vote on this plan. This state belongs to all of us, not just those of us in this chamber. Given the unique nature of the crisis and the serious impact our decisions will have on millions of Californians, the voters deserve to be heard.
That is sweet of you and all, Jerry, but these voters are the same ones who voted in favor of flushing billions of our tax dollars down the money-losing rat hole that is high-speed rail. We are no longer made up of the kind of voters who passed Prop 13 in 1978 (which Brown opposed by the way). California is now populated by way too many members of the moocher class who want to live at the expense of someone else. There is a reason that direct democracies are doomed to fail, and the people's knowledge that they can vote themselves goodies from the treasury is the ultimate reason for a democracy's downfall.

And what if the people vote against the tax hikes in the special election? That is why Brown is making subtle and not-so-subtle threats about loss of government services, in an effort to scare people away from voting against his tax increases in the first place.

How anyone can think that raising our taxes, or even keeping them at the rate they currently are, is what will fix our budgetary problems is sheer madness. Apparently, Illinois is in an uproar right now because their top income tax rate was just raised from 3% to 5%. Meanwhile, the top rate in California hovers around 10%! We are not broke for a lack of revenue. We simply spend more than we bring in. The problem is that no one wants the spending cut for their pet program, be it welfare, education, public pensions, or subsidizing so-called "green energy."

Right now, California's office of governor and both houses of the state legislature are dominated by the Democrats. They can easily pass and sign legislation with absolutely no roadblocks by the Republicans. Make Jerry Brown and the Democrats in the Assembly and Senate own whatever strategy they have to get us out of this mess, and don't let them have an out by blaming their failure on us, the voters, when their tax-and-spend ways inevitably fail.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free... it expects what never was, and never will be." -Thomas Jefferson