Dependency, whether upon government or some other addictive substance, robs people of their self-esteem and prevents them from ever realizing their full potential as a human being. There must be a special place in Hell for those who desire to impose dependency on others in order that they may rule and dominate them.
The way to think about an Obama reelection in 2012 is to think about a McCain victory in 2008. Had McCain won in 2008 where would conservatives be now? “On the ropes” is the only answer that makes any sense given what is known of McCain’s history and his personal traits. It’s unimaginable that there would be the sort of conservative ascendancy that has occurred in the last 2 years if McCain had defeated Obama in 2008. Obama has done for the conservative movement what McCain could never have done, nor had any desire to do, and that is to revive the conservative movement and inspire The Tea Party which has moved big numbers of “precious” independents away from the Democrat party to the Republican party. I call independents “precious” because both parties think they are the key to electoral success.
The Republican field of likely presidential candidates for 2012 doesn’t look all that good unless you consider some that are probably not well positioned for 2012, but will be by 2016. For 2012 it is Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Mitch Daniels, Newt Gingrich or Mike Huckaby. All of those would be a disaster for conservatives and for the Republican party because they are tentative conservatives and would be too easy for Democrats and the media to demonize. They’d start apologizing as soon as they were attacked on the most frivolous grounds, or like Daniels, give up on conservative principles. They are in the George B. McClellan branch of the Party. In the Ulysses S. Grant branch of the party are the young bloods; they are Chris Christie, Marco Rubio, Bobby Jindal, Michelle Bachmann, Sarah Palin, and possibly Mr. “Roadmap for America” Paul Ryan, although he has already ruled himself out for 2012. Texas Governor Rick Perry fits here as well.
The Grants are the ones that can reposition the Republican party to attract conservatives and independents and make it a winning majority, and become the party of good governance. While the McClellans dither, snivel and apologize for being just a teeny-weeny bit conservative, the Grants fight for conservative ideas and proudly proclaim their allegiance to conservative principles. The McClellan branch are losers and will take down conservatives and Republicans with them. But if a Republican is to defeat Obama in 2012 it will likely to one from the McClellan branch. If one of them can beat Obama it won’t be because he is such a good candidate. It will be solely because Obama is such an awful candidate. The Grants have the potential to be great candidates, but perhaps not yet. Perhaps not by 2012. Surely by 2016, though.
A 2012 outcome that has Obama getting a second term but Republicans in control of both houses of Congress would not be a bad result. The Grants will be there doing good by holding the namby-pamby, scaredy-cat, tired and old McClellan slow-boys’ feet to the fire. Obama’s continued presence will keep the Tea Party rolling along as well. The fight to get rid of Obamacare will intensify and Obama and the Democrats will have to defend it as it becomes increasingly unpopular. All in all, 2016 will be a great year for conservatives and Republicans by heading off a possible McClellan win in 2012 and the sort of sorry-assed, one-term Republican presidency any of them are good for only to be followed by another big across-the-board Democrat victory in 2016 when the voters are once again fatigued by Republican moderates, RINOS and losers.
I find support for this thesis from Noemie Emery, one of my favorite columnists.
It was March 29, 1911 — 100 years ago tomorrow — when the U.S. War Department adopted the .45 Automatic Pistol as the official sidearm of the military. This Tuesday, take a minute to consider that this great design still is considered one of the best fighting handguns in the world, it’s a staple of competition shooting, it’s made by more companies now than ever in its history, and it’s still one of the most shootable handguns ever created. A version of the 1911 is used by the LAPD elite SIS [Special Investigations Section] Tactical Detective Squad which does stakeout and undercover operations against LA’s most violent criminals. Their speciality is to track down LA’s most dangerous offenders and take them off the street.
For a time about 15 years ago there were only three or four companies making 1911s. But the popularity of the pistol has grown so that today there must be at least 25 companies making them in a multitude of designs and styles, all based upon John Browning’s original.
Ah, yes, the dream of emission-free electric cars will save the world. But wait. Are they emission free? Well, not if the electricity used to recharge them comes from coal-fired power plants. In that case, an electric car is actually a coal-burning car. An electric car is only emission-free and cheap to operate, if the electricity to recharge it is generated at a nuclear power plant.
From 1910 to 1940 two million Blacks moved from the South to the North, primarily to cities like Chicago, Detroit, and New York City. This has been called the First Great Migration. It was followed by a second and even greater migration from 1940 to 1970 when 5 million Blacks went North, leaving their former homes in Alabama, Mississippi and South Carolina. But the most recent census shows a reversal. Blacks are again on the move, this time out of the liberal utopias of Chicago, Detroit and New York City to Southern states. They aren’t seeking to return to their ancestral homes as much as to find better opportunities for jobs, education for their children, and an escape from Northern urban crime and cultural decay. In other words, they are going South for the same reasons an earlier generation of Blacks went North. To find a better life.
Waves of blue state Blacks are fleeing the stagnant job opportunities, high taxes and rotten social conditions liberal Democrat social policies have created for them. Michigan, Illinois and New York are the three states that are losing Blacks to Southern migration in the greatest numbers. In the words of Walter Russell Mead, “The failure of blue social policy to create an environment which works for Blacks is the most devastating possible indictment of the 20th century liberal enterprise in the United States.”
Mead thinks that Blacks who usually vote blue at the ballot box but are now voting red with their feet will eventually pull the Democrat party to the right. He’s dreaming. The Democrat party is firmly in the grips of radical leftists [see Radical in Chief by Stanley Kurtz] and will not be moving right any time soon. What is more likely is that a tremendous opportunity is about to bloom for the Republican party to explain to Blacks why it is in their interest to support conservative candidates, the overwhelming majority of which will be Republicans. Will Republicans rise to this challenge of will this be another in a long line of missed opportunities to garner Black votes? I wouldn’t put much money on Republicans’ chances of turning this migration into Republican votes. More likely, Republicans will hardly notice what is happening and do nothing to explain to the new Black residents of red states that conservative social and economic policies created the conditions now motivating them to move South, and in order to keep those opportunities those polices should be continued. For that, they will need to forsake their red voting habits and at least give the Republican party a chance.
Republicans have the more powerful story to tell. They should be able to gain Black support which will make it difficult for Democrats to win another election outside of the blue Northeast. But that will require Republicans to learn to talk to Blacks. So I’m doubtful it will happen. Republicans have never shown an aptitude for learning how to make their case to Blacks. Most Republican political victories are the result of Democrats screwing up, not Republicans making smart political moves. Democrats are going to see this as an opportunity for them to gain back lost ground in the South. Sadly, that’s the more likely outcome of this Third Great Migration, unless it’s possible for Republican party leaders to somehow get a mass lobotomy.
Did you turn off all your electric lights and appliances for an hour Saturday night at 8:30? You know, to save the planet?
If you really want to save the planet, and especially if you think earth hour on Saturday night makes sense, maybe you should consider moving to North Korea. After all, every hour there is earth hour. The lights are always out.
Ross McKitrick, professor of economics at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, comments on earth hour in the Vancouver Sun on March 25, 2011:
Why I Will Leave My Lights On
In 2009 I was asked by a journalist for my thoughts on the importance of Earth Hour. Here is my response.
I abhor Earth Hour. Abundant, cheap electricity has been the greatest source of human liberation in the 20th century. Every material social advance in the 20th century depended on the proliferation of inexpensive and reliable electricity. Giving women the freedom to work outside the home depended on the availability of electrical appliances that free up time from domestic chores. Getting children out of menial labour and into schools depended on the same thing, as well as the ability to provide safe indoor lighting for reading.
Read the rest of Professor McKitrick’s comments here.
They’re a disgrace because thousands are convicted of DUI who probably are no danger to anyone, having their lives torn apart by the collateral consequences of a conviction, and the real drunks are still on the road killing and maiming. The MADD lobby has created a monster that is a wrecking ball in society but a magnificent cash cow for local governments and insurance companies.
Quite simply, breathalyzers do not work and the legal BAC limit of .08 is an unscientific, purely political and convenient myth to get as many convictions as possible, without doing anything meaningful about the dangers of real drunks driving on public roads.
Syria is the last place I expected to see any protesting against the oppressive government of Basher Al Assad. After all, Syria is the place where Basher’s father, Haffez Al Assad had his army machine gun all 25,000 residents of the village of Hom in the 1980’s because one of their native sons made an assassination attempt on him. Haffez was able to do this without a peep being heard from any quarter in any part of the World. A most shameful event for European liberals who claim to care about “little people” for all of the victims were the quintessential little people. But now the Syrian people seem to be uprising, to my great delight as well as surprise. I have traveled in Syria and, without any diminution of my loyalty and love for Israel, I found the Syrian people to be accommodating, intelligent and likable. English is widely spoken. I met many who were quietly defying their oppressive government by smuggling televisions into Syria from Lebanon to get around Basher’s 100% tax on a stinking little 13-inch black and white TV. Any red-blooded American would have to find this charming given that our founding fathers were notorious smugglers.*
What’s going on in Syria today may be of little interest to the average American, but for those who are curious the preeminent British scholar of all things Arab, Mr. David Pryce-Jones has a piece up at National Review Online that you can read. Mr. Pryce-Jones is the author of The Closed Circle, a classic book on the Arab mind. Here is how he begins at National Review Online:
Syrians in the town of Deraa have overthrown a statue of the late dictator Hafez Assad, father of the present dictator Bashar Assad. This heroic feat brings to mind the tremendous moment in Baghdad when the statue of Saddam Hussein was toppled. The difference is that American forces brought down Saddam, while the Syrians themselves have smashed this vainglorious statue. Their bravery is immense. This is a moment which Syrians will speak about to their children and grandchildren.
This may be Syria’s moment. Do read it all.
Here a couple of photographs from my travels in Syria:
Below is the temple at Palmyra. Some people believe this is the place where Jesus drove the moneychangers out of the temple. There is no way to know that but there is one curious thing that is certain. The spoken language in the nearby village is Aramaic, the language Jesus spoke.
* Unlike modern day smugglers who smuggle vile and illegal drugs that destroy the lives of their customers, our founding fathers and their co-horts smuggled essential commodities such as rum, tobacco and molasses. These were legal products that had been subjected to repressive taxes by a despot king in the manner similar to that levied by the present Syrian regime on its desperate people.
Justice in criminal cases can go awry for a lot of different reasons. New theories of genetic disposition to criminal behavior are interesting and some of it might even be true. The worry is that it might become another excuse factory to let criminals off the hook. We’ve seen how powerful made-up excuses can be, the most common one has been “He had a difficult childhood and he can’t help it.” The excuse that a criminal’s genetic code made him do it would feed too neatly into the “he can’t help it” excuse with the result of putting violent recidivists on the street. Thankfully, there’s no evidence at present that anything of the sort has occurred to any great degree.
But Clinton-appointed Federal District Court Judge Gary Sharpe in the Northern District of New York has used his own genetic theories in the sentencing of Gary Cossey, who was convicted of possession of child pornography. Judge Sharpe didn’t use the man’s genes to let him off lightly; he did just the opposite. He substantially increased the sentence beyond the sentencing guidelines on the theory that his genes would make him reoffend in the future, even 50 years from now. The Judge reasoned that the man must be kept in prison, possibly for life, because his future behavior is in his genes and beyond his control.
The Judge has no special knowledge of genetics, either by training, education or experience. No expert testimony on genetic behavior was given at trial. Psychological evidence was presented which the Judge ignored. So the Judge relied on his own extra-judicial notions about genetics and treated that as evidence.
The Second Circuit didn’t take to well to that.
On appeal, Cossey argued that Judge Sharpe relied on the belief that he would re-offend, based on a notion that he is genetically predisposed to view child pornography. Accordingly, he argued, his allegations concerning Judge Sharpe’s improper consideration of his genetic predisposition to re-offend, and his objections generally to the court’s reliance on his potential to re-offend, should be reviewed for “plain error.” That means the error is so egregious it cannot stand even if the appellant failed to follow proper procedures in trial court to preserve the issue for appeal. The error must be “plain” and affect substantial rights. It must be clear or obvious and seriously affect the fairness, integrity, or public reputation of the judicial proceedings. [Some judges still do care about the public reputation of judicial proceedings, apparently] Serious stuff is what qualifies as “plain error.”
The Second Circuit opinion stated, “A reviewing court entertains a strong presumption that the sentencing judge has considered all arguments properly presented to her, unless the record clearly suggests otherwise.” [notice how the reviewing court uses the feminine pronoun “her” even though Judge Sharpe is a man. Male pronouns such as “his”, “he”, or “him” are now frowned upon in legal circles, at least in reference to the players, i.e., judges and lawyers. I think you’re supposed to use “it” in referring to a male lawyer, if you must refer to a male lawyer at all. All judges are “her” or “she.” If Doctor Johnson had anticipated this practice he would have defined it in his Dictionary under the word “cant”]
In reviewing Cossey’s sentence by Judge Sharpe, the Second Circuit opinion said:
In determining Cossey’s sentence, the district court rejected two separate psychological evaluations that had found Cossey was at a low to moderate risk to re-offend. The first report was conducted pursuant to a referral from Pretrial Services; the second report was conducted about one month later, upon Cossey’s visit to a psychologist. The court dismissed those reports, explaining that “[t]he opinions of the psychologists and the psychiatrists as to what harm you may pose to those children in the future is virtually worthless here.” One reason the court offered was that it did not “have a lot of faith in that profession in the first place” because the profession is “all over the board on those issues.” The court continued, informing Cossey it needed “to share a view that’s a little different than what you’re hearing from your psychiatrists and that’s because I’m not sure there’s any answer for what I see here beyond what I’m about to tell ya.” The court predicted that some fifty years from now Cossey’s offense conduct would likely be discovered to be caused by “a gene you were born with. And it’s not a gene you can get rid of.”
The court expressed its belief that although Cossey was in therapy, it “can only lead, in my view, to a sincere effort on your part to control, but you can’t get rid of it. You are what you’re born with. And that’s the only explanation for what I see here.”
The appellate court went on to hold that when a trial judge relies on its own scientific theories of human nature to sentence a defendant, as Judge Sharpe did here, a finding of plain error is warranted. The Second Circuit remanded the case for re-sentencing, and then said:
We take the case before us one step farther …, however, as we find it necessary to remand the case to a different judge. As a general rule, “resentencing before a different judge is required only in the rare instance in which the judge’s fairness or the appearance of the judge’s fairness is seriously in doubt.”
Remanding to a different judge is a rare event and serious rebuke of the trial judge. A criminal’s genetic code cannot be used to enhance his [male pronoun OK here because the guy’s a criminal] sentence. Let’s hope it works the other way as well and that genetics can neither be used to excuse criminal behavior.
This is an exceptionally moving video. You will like this Pakistani Actress, I promise. She is fearless as she stands up to the male buffoons in her culture.
Long shoreman philosopher Eric Hoffer explained the mind of the left in his 1951 classic The True Believer — Thoughts On The Nature Of Mass Movements.
True believers are the engine of mass movements which appeal to a special type of mind. Hoffer says, “All movements however different in doctrine and aspiration draw their achievements from the same type of humanity; they all appeal to the same types of mind.”
That type of mind is a selfish and frustrated one that will lash out ferociously at its perceived enemy. Anyone opposed to the movement is the enemy. True believers are incapable of debating the merits of their cause because they view all who disagree to be a vile enemy that must be defeated by any means necessary.
Hoffer says, “Mass movements can arise and spread without belief in a God, but never without belief in a devil.”
Conservatives, members of the Tea Party, Republicans, etc. are not just political opponents to the left. They are the devil. Nothing is too bad for them.
That’s why union thugs are thugs and the liberal media ignores the violence and destruction they do. They all share the same type of destructive mind.
The joyous Jewish holiday of Purim starts tonight [Saturday, 3/19]. It commemorates the beautiful young Jewish woman named Esther, one of the wives of Ahasuerus, King of Persia. At great risk to herself Esther persuaded the King to save the Jews living in Persia from a plot to murder them. The story is told in the Book of Esther in the Bible.
Like many Jewish holidays, the theme is “They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat.”
“It’s hard to imagine, but it’s now been eight days since the Honshu quake and tsunami, and evidence continues to accumulate that while it was certainly a bad industrial accident, the “doomsday” and “worst case” scenarios just haven’t happned. Every day longer makes those scenarios even less likely — the reactors are cooling, the Japanese are getting them supplied with power, and the fuel rods haven’t burned.”
Read the whole thing.
“Powered by an emergency diesel generator, pumps are circulating cooling water in the spent fuel pools of reactors 5 and 6 at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, according to reports. The company also added water to the used fuel pool at reactor 3 after elite firefighters from Tokyo spent 13 hours operating a high-pressure spray truck that pumped seawater into the pool.”
“All four reactors at Fukushima Daini nuclear power plant have reached cold shutdown conditions with normal cooling.”
The problem was with spent fuel rods, not the reactors themselves. It’s now under control. The reactors did what they were supposed to do. Sorry, liberal media. You did your best to make us think doomsday was upon us, but we’re made of better stuff. We knew it was the herd mentality of liberal news reporters that was melting down, not Japan’s nuclear reactors.
Friday, 3/18 at 11:00 AM EST
Reactors 1, 2 and 3 at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant are in stable condition, with workers continuing to provide seawater cooling into the reactors. Containment integrity is believed to be intact on reactors 1, 2 and 3, and containment building pressures are elevated but are within design limits.
All four reactors at Fukushima Daini remain shut down with normal cooling being maintained using residual heat removal systems.
More at Nuclear Energy Institute
To the chagrin of the liberal media, the end of the world is not imminent.
That’s the title of Ann Coulter’s column today. It’s another priceless knockdown of liberal cant. She says:
As The New York Times science section reported in 2001, an increasing number of scientists believe that at some level — much higher than the minimums set by the U.S. government — radiation is good for you. “They theorize,” the Times said, that “these doses protect against cancer by activating cells’ natural defense mechanisms.”
I guess good radiation stories are not as exciting as news anchors warning of mutant humans and scary nuclear power plants — news anchors who, by the way, have injected small amounts of poison into their foreheads to stave off wrinkles. Which is to say: The general theory that small amounts of toxins can be healthy is widely accepted –except in the case of radiation.
Every day Americans pop multivitamins containing trace amount of zinc, magnesium, selenium, copper, manganese, chromium, molybdenum, nickel, boron — all poisons.
Before anyone accuses Ann Coulter of being a crackpot they might like to read her column for the authorities she cites to back up her thesis, and then consider that Colorado has more than double the U.S. average background radiation of around 7 milliSieverts (700 milli-Roentgen) a year; Leadville, Colorado at an elevation of 10,000 feet above sea level has background radiation of 50 times that or more. According to predictions by the government Colorado should have higher cancer rates than places with low background radiation. Reality is exactly the opposite — Colorado has a lower cancer rate than those places.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
Opponent of vouchers: People don’t want public funds used for private education.
Vouchers supporter: I’m not afraid of Jesus in the classroom — I’m afraid of failure in the classroom.
This voucher program allows public schools to keep 25% of the money that would have been allocated for a student whose parents opt for the voucher to send their child to a private school. Some say this will enrich public schools because they will be paid for a student that is not there.
The benefit to be derived from vouchers is that it will require public schools to compete with private schools for students. Competition has a way of making all the players better at what they do.
Oh well, the liberal Democrat Justices on the Colorado Supreme Court will probably declare it unconstitutional.
The perversion is that the public pays the salaries and benefits of public workers but collective bargaining by public sector unions cuts the public out of the process of setting the level of those salaries and benefits.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
Michael Ramirez illustrates the perversion, er squeeze.
The liberal media and anti-nuclear power activists are desperately trying to make as big a disaster as possible out of the earthquake and tsumani which seriously damaged the nuclear power reactors at Fukushima Dalichi and Daini in Okuma. Charlie Martin brings common sense and unbiased analysis to it.
- Relax: this is not another Chernobyl or Three Mile Island, and I’ll tell you exactly why. The only thing to fear is the sensationalist reporting that has the world panicked.
After a must read explanation of the whole matter he concludes:
- It’s very likely that there has been at least a partial meltdown in one or more of the reactors — but “meltdown” doesn’t mean “catastrophic release.” The reactor would not just have to melt down, but also penetrate both the still containment vessel and the concrete outer layer, and both were designed explicitly to keep that from happening.
- What we can say is that it’s not very likely to be a catastrophic accident, and gets less likely with every minute. The Japanese are cooling the reactors down, and adding boron, which “poisons” the nuclear reaction by absorbing neutrons, the “sparks” that make the reaction go.
- The frustrating part about writing on this stuff is that people don’t seem to have any middle setting between “everything is fine” and “run in circles scream and shout”. So saying “no, it’s not Chernobyl” is interpreted as “it’s nothing.”
- So let’s go ahead and make this clear: no, it’s still not Chernobyl. But no, it’s not nothing.
UPDATE: A fire has reportedly broken out at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant. Stay tuned. 3/15 7:00 PM
UPDATE II: The fire wasn’t in the spent fuel rods, but in or on the building containing the pool. 3/15 9:00 PM EST
UPDATE III: Latest update from MIT at 6:00 AM Eastern on 3/16 is here.
UPDATE IV: The second worst thing you can do is ignore the news of the trouble at the Japanese nuclear reactors. The worst thing you can do is follow it.
— Rush Limbaugh
Rush is not talking about the creditable reports of Charlie Martin or MIT that I have referred to here. He’a talking about the state-run drive-by media. Here are a few of the headlines they have for you…