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
Wednesday, November 21. 2018
Giving thanks for the magic of the marketplace, the invisible hand of strangers, and no turkey czars
Thanksgiving warning: Romaine lettuce is not safe to eat, CDC warns U.S. consumers
The harvesters are pooping in the fields again
Pope Francis Contra Property Rights, Borders
So get rid of those Vatican guards, and the Vatican wall.
Environmentalists Knock Themselves Out On The Keystone XL Pipeline
Break up the internet monopolies?
Self-driving cars work about as well as central planning bureaucrats do
Megyn Kelly Will Get $30 Million To Leave NBC
It can be fun to get fired especially if you have legs like hers
College Students Felt Depressed, ‘Rejected’ After 2016 Election
Grow up, babies
Lecturers at university told not to use capital letters in communications with students
Syracuse U: Mandatory diversity course 'didn't hit the mark'
New York and Virginia won Amazon, but low-tax states keep winning more and more jobs
Midterms: Saddest election ever?
" From my time in both the military and healthcare I can say that the biggest problem are the compliance costs."
Kirsten Powers: If you support Trump's agenda, you are racist
The GOP Agenda for the Next Two Years
Rush’s Epic Answer to a 13-Year-Old: Why Becoming an American Shouldn’t Be Easy
MEXICANS DON'T WANT ILLEGAL ALIENS IN THEIR COUNTRY, NO ONE DOES
German Think Tank: Trump Winning in Trade War with China
Their bureaucrats want an empire
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
Megyn Kelly Will Get $30 Million to forget everything she knows about Matt Lauer.
Yeah, I get it but it's a better explanation for why NBC is paying her $30 mil to go away than good gams
I could forget an awful lot for $30 mil myself... come to think of it.
re Thanksgiving warning: Romaine lettuce is not safe to eat, CDC warns U.S. consumers
My wife just threw out a package of Romaine lettuce and had already fed some of it to me with no ill effects, but she said she, "Wasn't taking any chances."
This really hurts all the growers of Romaine lettuce whose product is safe. They have all of the expense in the crop and now who will buy their lettuce? It won't sit on the shelf forever.
It just shows how much better we are at detecting microbial bugs. For decades people got sick from bugs like this and it was simply chalked up as having 'the flu'.
re Kirsten Powers: If you support Trump's agenda, you are racist
Of course you are.
Kristen Powers is just reciting a verse from the Progressive Bible.
If disagree with anything a leftist says or are simply even a white male. You are a racist/white supremacist.
End of discussion.
The hipster perjorative de jour for 20th century survivors like me is "male, pale, and stale." Guity as charged on the first two counts, but stale? Never!
The left has co-opted our language. They interpret things differently for Republicans and in a way that can allow them to make these stupid dishonest claims of racism. Ironically the left is rabidly racist, the very channel that Ms. Powers was on is known for it's constant race baiting 24/7. The commentator talking to Ms. Powers is racist 24/7. But none of this matters in the never ending goal to change normal English words into "proof" of racist intent. Why??? Because it works. I can guarantee you that some of those "white women" who voted for Trump will vote Democrat in the future to "prove" to themselves and others that THEY aren't racist. Ms Powers is a paid liar and a paid race baiter whose job is to race shame normal people into bowing to the left's racist agenda. The party of the KKK strikes again.
GoneWithTheWind: The party of the KKK strikes again.
Her mind was so fixed upon Ashley that of the first half-whispered words of Rhett, she only heard: "Take my horse . . . tied outside . . . ride like hell."
Archie mumbled some question and Scarlett heard Rhett reply: "The old Sullivan plantation. You'll find the robes pushed up the biggest chimney. Burn them."
Fiction. The Democrats indeed formed the KKK before the civil war was ended but they did not begin terrorizing blacks until after the war was over. So there would have been no "robes" hidden up the chimney.
Wait! Fiction... Like everything the left says.
Anon: The Democrats indeed formed the KKK before the civil war was ended but they did not begin terrorizing blacks until after the war was over.
The events depicted occurred after the end of the Civil War, during the period of Reconstruction.
Reconstruction was a terrible scourge on the South. The North made a terrible mistake by choosing to punish those Southerners who survived the war. It is likely that the KKK benefited from this. And it created a hateful Democrat stronghold over that part of our country for 115 years or so.
Anon: Reconstruction was a terrible scourge on the South. The North made a terrible mistake by choosing to punish those Southerners who survived the war.
Occupation was the only thing protecting blacks in the South. When Reconstruction ended, whites began a generations long period of oppression of blacks.
You are partly right. But you under estimate the repression and punishment that was reconstruction. There is no doubt that it was in part responsible for the growing rift between white and black following the war. It is also inaccurate to simply claim that whites only were responsible for the problems in the South after the war. Many of the blacks did indeed become criminals and created as much of the negative feelings as the whites did. In has always been inaccurate to label all of the violence against blacks as simple racism much of it was defensive. Not PC to say all that I know but truth is truth.
The Z-Team is apparently unaware that the person who comments as "Gone With the Wind" was born and raised in the Massachusetts city of Lynn, a.k.a Lynn, Lynn, city of sin. [A ditty familiar to those from New England.]
Anyone familiar with the history of Lynn realizes that his blog name refers not to the novel or movie of that title, but to a bygone past- gone with the wind. As in his hometown of Lynn is no longer the industrial powerhouse it once was. Apparently such subtleties are beyond the ken of the Z-Team.
Given what his blog name refers to- the city he grew up in has changed beyond all recognition- references to dialogue from the movie Gone With the Wind are irrelevant, and simply show once more the tomfoolery of the Z-Team.
I can guarantee you that this white woman who voted for Trump will not vote for a democrat. If I am racist it is only based on their definition of such. I could care less what Kirsten Powers has to say on the subject. I have nothing to prove to any of the leftists. Please give us "white trump votin' women", some credit. You sound like the left when you make statements like that.
This white woman ain't switching to the Democrats any time soon.
I'll say one thing for that Syracuse diversity course, and it's the same impression I get from Facebook's increasingly frantic PR attempts: people are really learning how to talk opaquely about this stuff. The Syracuse kids all know to acknowledge that the purpose of the course is gold-plated morality, but its execution fell short of the mark. Non-white-male students are permitted to observe that their disadvantaged colleagues have to learn to "talk about" certain things, but certainly without ever initiating a conversation that makes anyone feel unsafe. Facebook repeats endlessly that it obviously should have "done more" to achieve any number of completely indecipherable aspirations in areas where it had no detectable influence. There is to be zero discussion of anything concrete, certainly no evidence or reasoning. These people are getting excellent training in how to run for office. They may even get good at surviving FBI interviews.
I can comment on this with some personal knowledge (as a Syracuse grad and since my son just graduated and was there during the Theta Tau incident, as well as having to take these kinds of classes while he was there).
You can't force diversity. You can't impose a regimen as a reaction to an overreaction. What Theta Tau did was stupid and 'wrong' - in a sense. While I'm not condoning racism, or racist commentary, what happened with them wasn't racist. My son told me that several members (who happened to be the butt of the joke) had told him that was a standard part of Theta Tau behavior, to make fun of its members. Everyone was in on the joke. The person who released the video was the person who was out of line, in their opinion.
I see this in my day-to-day life in corporate America. You can't have a conversation about most things gender/race/religion/nationality related without using hushed tones. Even then, you can still be brought up on charges if someone was 'offended' and overheard a whispered private conversation.
The issue, in some cases, is privacy and where does it end.
But in the case of this class, it's an example of an overreaction to a private event in which the members had all signed off and were fine with. So instead of being stupid fun for college kids, it's become a "teaching moment" for the enlightened elites to force people to be "better people".
Kids don't fall for that stuff.
re Brussels Unveils EU Army Plans for Spy School, Missile Development
Their bureaucrats want an empire
I would concur with the bureaucrat comment.
I would add that whether or not they actually get missiles doesn't matter. It's (funding) the process that matters. All the endless meetings, getting it organized, setting timetables, deciding who will be in charge of what, creating new bureaucracies to do the 'work' and staffing them, studies, strategies, diversity and compliance departments . . .The possibilities for consuming taxpayer money without actually accomplishing anything are nearly endless.
As for the spy school, I can imagine that being opened after years and years of dithering . . . with spies trained not to spy on foreign countries but to spy on other bureaucrats and of course the little people. They could root out eco-criminals and such.
Brussels Unveils EU Army Plans for Spy School, Missile Development
Trump largely forced the issue when he repeatedly delayed affirming NATO's guarantee of mutual self-defence, and by constantly clamoring that the Europeans should build-up their own defences (though he seems to think they pay the U.S. protection money or something).
Actually, the non-US countries in NATO agreed to spend 2.5% of GDP on their own military preparedness. Only Poland and Estonia, (IIRC, it may have been Lithuania) actually met even that meager mark. Trumps meta-question was basically why should the US feel obligated to meet it's commitments under the Atlantic Treaty when the countries that were defended under it's aegis did not feel it necessary to meet theirs?
Another Guy named Dan: Actually, the non-US countries in NATO agreed to spend 2.5% of GDP on their own military preparedness.
Actually, the Wales Summit Declaration of 2014 set at target of 2% of GDP within a decade.
Another Guy named Dan: Trumps meta-question was basically why should the US feel obligated to meet it's commitments under the Atlantic Treaty when the countries that were defended under it's aegis did not feel it necessary to meet theirs?
The result was to weaken the defence alliance, and embolden adversaries.
By the way, when was the last time that a NATO country triggered the collective defence agreement under Article 5?
"Brussels Unveils EU Army Plans for Spy School, Missile Development"
The key flaw in such plans: the EU is not a sovereign state.
Re: the biggest problem are the compliance costs
Besides all the other bad things that Obamacare required, it required digital medical records, some of the downsides of which were examined in this column. Not only is specific software required but also hardware. What isn't mentioned is that it is driving smaller doctor offices out of business or encouraging doctors to retire to escape the new hassles or to be gobbled up by big corporations (and we thought the left didn't like big corporations!). A similar thing happened to smaller banks after Dodd-Frank. It's always the same story - when you increase regulations, you increase compliance costs and you kill smaller businesses which are the main drivers of employment and innovation.
Does anyone else find that the brouhaha over the murder of the so-called Saudi "journalist" in Istanbul seems contrived and unduly kept in the forefront? There were a hundred or so journalist killed in Mexico and not a peep out of the people who seem outraged over the Khashoggi killing. It seems that Khashoggi is in fact a member of the Muslim brotherhood and his so-called journalism was propaganda for radical Muslims and not journalism at all. It also seems that Turkey has a political motivation and what is the deal with the tapes? How did Erdogan get tapes from inside the Saudi embassy? Very suspicious. And why are all those on the left jumping on this as though they all got the memo? Who benefits from alienating Saudi Arabia? Iran, Russia... Who is harmed? The U.S., Israel. Does this explain why the left is all in???
Anon: There were a hundred or so journalist killed in Mexico and not a peep out of the people who seem outraged over the Khashoggi killing.
Committee to Protect Journalists
Most journalists killed in Mexico were killed by criminal gangs. The reason why the Khashoggi murder is notable is because he was a U.S. resident, was lured to the Saudi consulate in Turkey, then killed on orders from the Saudi royal family.
Rusty: As if the Saudi and US governments are not criminal gangs.
The distinction is that criminal gangs, such as in Mexico, are subject to prosecution, e.g. Joaquín Guzmá.
He was a Muslim Brotherhood spy that Obama let into the country. Nothing more, nothing less.
Where was the outrage over the last killings by Turkey of a large percentage of their population because they objected to Erdogan??? Where is the outrage of the ethnic cleansing of the Kurds by Turkey and Syria??? Where is the outrage over the killing of citizens AND reporters in Venezuela?
You missed the entire point. We are being played and this particular incident is being used to divide and conquer in the Middle East. Thankfully Trump is not as stupid as our MSM.
Anon: Where was the outrage over the last killings by Turkey of a large percentage of their population because they objected to Erdogan??? Where is the outrage of the ethnic cleansing of the Kurds by Turkey and Syria??? Where is the outrage over the killing of citizens AND reporters in Venezuela?
There was plenty of outrage concerning all those events. Perhaps it didn't penetrate the echochamber.
Anon: We are being played and this particular incident is being used to divide and conquer in the Middle East. Thankfully Trump is not as stupid as our MSM.
Regardless of motivations, murder in a consulate is a serious breach of international norms. It is possible to continue to do business with Saudi Arabia and other authoritarian regimes, and still hold them to account for their behavior.
I think you have proven my point. Since you have your finger on the pulse of the socialist/fascist left it is clear that the memo was to use this incident as a political weapon against Trump and for the Muslim Brotherhood. Once again the left is scamming the country in favor of outside interests.
I think most American news stories, especially those expressing "outrage," are manufactured and timed by the media.
I'd noticed for many years that Time and Newsweek always seemed to have the same cover subject each week, and that virtually identical "breaking news" stories tend to come out simultaneously in multiple news sources.
It's all coordinated. The repeated hits on Kavanaugh, none of which had any facts to back them up, are a good example. That gave us many weeks of drama.
The other fun one is every Christmas and Easter, when the media like clockwork come out with the latest "archaeological discovery" supposedly disproving the Gospel. ("Ossuary Containing Jesus' Bones Discovered"; "Papyrus Fragment of Lost Gospel Proves Mary Magdalene Was the Wife of Jesus").
"I think most American news stories, especially those expressing 'outrage,' are manufactured and timed by the media."
Not so sure about timed but manufactured - definitely.
All news stories are manufactured and always have been.
That's what the media does
Re the Khashoggi murder.
As Hillary Clinton said, at this point what does it matter?
Ray: at this point what does it matter?
It matters in that it signals that tyrants can murder foreign nationals with impunity, including residents of the United States seeking protection.
Since it no longer matters that our ambassador to Libya and three intelligence officers died, Khashoggi's murder must be more important.
Even though it is a complete waste of time to respond to you lefty, blindingly ignorant propagandists, I am sure it was different when Obama was killing innocents with drone strikes.
But, but....ORANGE MAN BAD!
mudbug: Since it no longer matters that our ambassador to Libya and three intelligence officers died, Khashoggi's murder must be more important.
Perhaps not important to you, but Ahmed Abu Khattala was captured, tried, and imprisoned for his role in the attack. It's about accountability. While there is limit to what can be expected in terms of justice for Khashoggi, the U.S. is acting like a willing partner.
B. Hammer: Even though it is a complete waste of time to respond to you lefty, blindingly ignorant propagandists, I am sure it was different when Obama was killing innocents with drone strikes.
Drone strikes are conducted under international rules of war, which must comply with the principles of humanitarian law: military necessity, distinction, and proportionality.
Russtovich: While Khashoggi might be a U.S. resident, he is (was) a Saudi citizen.
That's right, but living in political exile in the U.S. from the Saudi regime.
Russtovich: And why is the U.S. responsible for every tyrant who kills their own citizens on their own soil? (since it was done in a Saudi consulate).
While Turkish authorities can't enter the consulate without permission, the consulate is under Turkish law, including laws against murder.
JJM: Surprised no one mentioned the assassination of bin Laden, which President Obama authorized with complete disregard for the sovereignty of Pakistan
It was a possible violation of Pakistani sovereignty, and led to a diplomatic rift. The U.S. claimed necessary self-defence. Diplomacy resulted in both countries moving past the incident.
JJM: The US has frequently killed people on foreign soil without the permission of the state in which it takes place.
The permissions are often tacit or non-public, so that the governments are not implicated. That's why many drone strikes are classified, even when they are reported in the New York Times — deniability.
JJM: Since when was that "legal" under "international law"?
Self-defence is valid justification when the country is unable or unwilling to remove the threat.
"It matters in that it signals that tyrants can murder foreign nationals with impunity,"
Disingenuous Zach. While Khashoggi might be a U.S. resident, he is (was) a Saudi citizen.
So, Saudi 'tyrants' weren't killing foreign nationals now were they?
And why is the U.S. responsible for every tyrant who kills their own citizens on their own soil? (since it was done in a Saudi consulate).
Get a grip man!
He's tap-dancing like mad here and he knows it.
Surprised no one mentioned the assassination of bin Laden, which President Obama authorized with complete disregard for the sovereignty of Pakistan (not that I much care; the Pakistani painted themselves into that corner with their duplicity).
Indeed, "international law" (one of the greatest oxymorons of all time) is rarely being observed with these drone strikes whether conducted under Obama or Trump.
The US has frequently killed people on foreign soil without the permission of the state in which it takes place.
Since when was that "legal" under "international law"?
Honeywell Kitchen Computer, the $70,000 Machine That No One Bought in the Late 1960s
Original advertisement for the Kitchen Computer: “If she can only cook as well as Honeywell can compute.”
Why would anyone want a computer at home? Before the personal computer era and its avalanche of possible uses, the perennial answer was: “to store recipes.”
That's definitely what I do. I want to be able to search for a recipe digitally. We have a cookbook program that supposedly makes this easier, but honestly I usually just keep them in my email files.
Don't forget music. I have over 12,000 songs on my laptop. I have one in the garage that I either paly music on or use as a radio to bring in non-local stations. I also have audio books and "written" books which the computer can read out loud for me while I'm puttering around.
Brussel's 'bureaucrats want an empire.'
Well, they're certainly importing the necessary army.
Re: the biggest problem is the compliance costs
A few years ago the state of Maryland constructed the inter county connector, a six lane highway, less than 20 miles long at a cost of 2.4 billion dollars. That's over $100,000,000 a mile. Most of the cost was due to regulatory compliance.