We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, February 28. 2009
What I am reading: A few of Michael Novak's books
Mike Pence at CPAC: Video. This guy is good.
Romney is looking better too.
How did the Left come into power? Hawkins
Thought crime at Central Conn
Cruel and funny, but apt
John Silber on university Presidency coups (with references to the Larry Summers debacle)
The Dyl sends in this piece on slums via a fascinating site, Emergent Urbanism. I blame Jacob Riis for our misunderstanding of "slums." Also via that site, half of Americans want to move. That is sad.
Question re Cap & Trade: why would corporations mind paying a carbon surcharge? They will simply pass it on to consumers as a price increase and have a net cost of zero.
Answer: Passing the cost to consumers, which they must do, will make domestic American products more expensive in comparison to imports and will result in reduced sales.
Unintended consequences: 1. To the extent that production can be shifted to foreign companies or foreign plants of US companies, jobs will move overseas. 2. With respect to domestic production, the result will be wildly inflationary. 3. Because cap & trade fees allow pollution to continue, the environment will not benefit (but it is becoming clear that
Photo: That's our Kondratiev
That's a King Protea sitting in a water pitcher. Odd, gigantic flowers. You can read about Protea here.
Sipp says that my very old kitchen table is Chestnut, and emailed me this unstained Chestnut sample to prove it. It's the same grain:
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 10:29 | Comments (7) | Trackbacks (0)
Short-term winning strategy? Short the Dow before every Obama or admin. speech.
Friday, February 27. 2009
How soon before China owns the USA? Mortgaging America. Geopolitically smart of China, because they already have us over a barrel.
Time to loosen up on Havana? I think so. Our approach to Cuba is a Cold War relic. The world is full of terrible governments.
The era of big government arrives. USA Today
Lib David Broder is worried about Obama
Old Europe finally getting involved in Iraq. For the oil!
Obama's war against coal
Phony Indian tribe's casino plan nixed by Supremes
Read the whole thing.
Conservative strategies: Who needs Joe the Plumber? A quote:
What Conservatives need are compelling candidates who can communicate.
David Leonhardt explains in the NYT how Obama's budget sweeps away Reagan.
How nice. Back to the 1970s, or the 1930s. Reagan wanted everybody to get wealthy. The old way is to reduce prosperity. It's very easy to do: just take their money away from them, take the gummint cut, and hand it to somebody else.
She Who Must Be Obeyed has already warned me: If this goes through, I am working 4 days a week, not five. She would prefer my company to my working at 50 cents on the dollar (with CT income tax) for the government - and she mostly handles the financial affairs. Fortunately for me, I enjoy her company too. I can easily help to reduce income inequality by being less productive. I love to work, but I love to have fun too. And there is nothing I wish to buy...besides vacations and trips.
Chris thought you might get a kick out of this Madoff Map. Just move the cursor over the spots and get the names. I recognize some of those names, including some big-time divorce lawyers. I cannot account for those accounting firms on there. Sheesh.
Kandinsky has always been one of my favorite Expressionists. This is Kirche in Murnau (1909):
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 11:15 | Comments (5) | Trackbacks (0)
Get out your checkbook. Obama's Budget Proposal will Expand Government Permanently.
This is going around. There will be lots of honking:
"I dress for church." Englishman. So do I, most of the time.
Don't these bozos realize that trees are grown on tree farms?
The opening chord of "Hard Day's Night." It's sort of a "clang," isn't it?
Dems seek to kill DC school choice
The genetics of male superiority in chess and science.
A closer look at the Bombay slums. They are neighborhoods, really. As I recall, "urban renewal" didn't work too well in the US.
How the socialized medicine scheme will work. I don't think folks will go for it.
Welcome to anarchy. Hitchen's Battle of Beirut
OK, some links re the proposed Obama socialist, eat-the-rich budget:
I actually agree about eliminating the mortgage interest deduction. There is nothing fair or rational about it, and all it does is to drive up the price of housing. However, their just mentioning this will add to the slump in home prices. They will just tighten the deduction phase-out at the high end.
I do not particularly like the idea of eliminating charitable deductions, despite the arguments for it.
Marginal Rev had this:
Henninger: This is a radical budget:
Cap and trade is a tax on everybody. Volokh:
The Audacity of Trope at Villainous. She quotes the NYT:
From a piece on the budget at Politico:
And to sum it all up, Dick Morris:
Thursday, February 26. 2009
From Ed Driscoll's Rendezvous with Scarcity:
A repost from 2007:
Today during lunch I read the piece by Tyler at Tangled Web about Dawkins, who is hopeful that a "final scientific enlightenment" will destroy religion on earth. Dawkins thinks it might require that elusive "theory of everything" to do the job.
Tyler correctly notes that the "theory of everything" will never address mankind's eternal questions.
Then I followed a link in one of his commenters to an essay by physicist Stanley Jaki, who makes the case that the "Theory of Everything" must be subject to Godel's Theorem. Very interesting essay, but I cannot cut and paste from it. Read it. He discusses Stephen Hawkings' epiphany, after many years of championing the quest, that a "theory of everything" is impossible.
Then I went over to Wikipedia to refresh my vague recollections of Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, which has nothing in common with Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle. That Wikipedia entry was good, but there was some rough sledding in it.
And that led me to the entry on The Liar Paradox.
The Liar Paradox is the old "Nothing I say to you is true," and the many variations thereof.
Is the Liar Paradox a true paradox, or an artifact of symbolization? I think the latter, but that reveals my bias of expecting consistency from reality. If you're curious about the approaches to the puzzle, the Wikipedia entry seems to do a good job with it.
Thus passed a very enjoyable Tuesday lunch break for this dilettante. (The Escher image is perfect, Bird Dog - thanks.)
Update: Here's a piece that takes you deeper into the Liar Paradox. Thanks, BL
Big surprise. Pajamas. I do not think this is what America signed up for.
Obama's proposed cap and trade will cost business billions, for no purpose whatsoever. I think this is psychotic - unless the goal is to destroy American business. But then who will pay the taxes? (Meanwhile, scientist forces Al Gore to back down.)
I doubt that even Congress is this crazy.
Related: Obama proposes one trillion in new taxes. That's for "the rich," of course. Around here, that's a teacher married to a cop, or the guy who owns the dry-cleaner.
When people move into the White House, they get a dog. Sometimes a cat too. Some of them actually had dogs before the White House, which is a different matter. It's about Pet Politics. (As you may recall, the Clinton's Lab was promptly run over by a car after leaving the WH, and Hillary dumped her famous cat on the secretary. I suspect the Bush's still have their dogs.)
The breed the Obamas decided to exploit is the Portuguese Water Dog. It's probably a breed ancestor of the Poodle. They need more daily exercise than any White House pet is likely to get.
I don't know how anybody can live without dogs around the place.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 11:37 | Comments (10) | Trackbacks (0)
For those who have faith in the power of civil discourse to expose and isolate radical nonsense, there was a small victory this week at
The faculty and grad students of its Ethnic Studies Department issued a Statement one-sidedly accusing Israel as racist for its actions in Gaza, the Statement failing to consider Gazans’ fault or, indeed, that Israel itself is a multi-racial society where Sephardic (mostly Middle Eastern) Jews as well as Arabs have more rights and economic opportunities than in any Islamic country. The Ethnic Studies Department scheduled a forum on campus for Wednesday, Feb. 25, to further their charge.
From on and off campus, there was vigorous written refutation of the charge, and criticism of the Ethnic Studies Department’s lack of academic standards. The refutations were informed and civil. I wrote a column in the
The UCSD Ethnic Studies Department cancelled yesterday's forum, claiming that the “character” of counter-writings is threatening. This is another of such groups’ canards and excuses, actually further revealing their fear and inability to stand up to determined factual and sane rebuttal.
Each campus is different but, regardless of outcome, this incident demonstrates the power of civil discourse. If not exercised by those who believe in it, the field is surrendered to those who don’t.
Not satire: Dartmouth's Climate Justice Research Project. I demand a colder climate.
Thoreau: Anti-government free-marketer
When children roar. Thompson
Stocks are good buys now.
Steyn is back with Macleans, and urging folks to have kids
Packed with info and analysis: Rich States, Poor States - ALEC-Laffer State Competitiveness Index. h/t, Cafe Hayek
Are violent video games adequately preparing our kids for the future? Let's hope so.
Obama's balancing act: Scare them enough, but not too much. Related: Are we seeing a generational shift towards big, parental government?
Mr. Free Market has Slumdog fatigue:
Bobby Jindal does better without a teleprompter
Government and medical care in the US, via a piece at Willisms:
Wednesday, February 25. 2009
- From Vanderleun: Let my cry come unto Thee: An Ash Wednesday Confession
- Via The Anchoress in her Ash Wednesday post:
Came in today's email. Dont know who to give credit to. Whoever you are, you're a magnificent bastard.
(Update: Needs a soundtrack:)
Posted by Gwynnie in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 15:20 | Comments (9) | Trackbacks (0)
The pretty, well-endowed girl in the photo led to Obama's Presidency.
Pols now want to ban primates as house pets. Aren't children primate house pets?
Why your kids are less well-educated than Belgian kids
Cause of cancer finally found. It's the Jews.
Quote at Patterico:
How rich bastards like me rip off the taxpayers
15 Dos and Don'ts of The New Progressive order
Is the excellent Bobby Jindal too dorky for prime time? Obama can make anybody seem dorky by comparison.
A new approach to the global warming scare: Maybe even a teensy change will be catstrophic. They are getting desperate to salvage this thing.
Beijing's Olympic center. Empty and abandoned.
Kill "mark to market." I agree. Investment is future-oriented, not present-oriented.
Greenies beginning to come around to nuclear
Memo to Eric Holder from Am Thinker:
Funny how little we hear about Iraq these days. Quoted at Lib Leanings:
Politics in the guise of science. Tierney in the NYT
Jihadist recruitment tactics are changing. The UK seems to be their fertile soil now.
Bipartisanship debunked. We are in a phase of polarized parties.
The ten things you need to know about the Employee Free Choice Act
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