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
Thursday, June 21. 2007
How easy is it to cross the border from Mexico without hassles? Polipundit. Very.
Bill Gates needs a basic econ course. RCP
Candidates: Who gives you the creeps? Somebody did a poll.
Shuttle update. They had an interesting trip, but it's time to come home.
EU running scared of the people. Brussels Journal/ Tell me what the difference is between what Napoleon wanted and what the EU wants. More: Editorial on the subject of the EU Constitution at NY Sun. I remain confused about why the Europeans would want anything more than an economic treaty. What for? To solve what problem?
French regs putting French grape growers on the ropes.
Newt's immigration video. To the point.
What if the middle east doesn't want peace? What if many of them like to fight, and find peace a bore? What if many of them don't care whether they live or die?
Aussies building a big new navy. At the same time that the Brits are shrinking theirs to nothing.
The immigration bill is back, key vote Friday.
Not your father's NH. NH bans bar and restaurant smoking. Trans fats next, and then guns?
Charles Kesler in the Claremont Review, via No Left Turns. A quote:
A reader quoted at Insty about Congress' terrible poll numbers:
Image: A Cezanne still life
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
As a sixteen year old I watched Marines Corps Aviation in 1964 transition from it's top line fighter, the F8U Crusader, to the newer F4U Phantom. Both were remarkable aircraft.
I also watched my mother and the base chaplain visit six or seven quarters at Laurel Bay, SC to inform the women there that they were now widows. 1964, was early in the war, yet to Marines it was a hot war with real losses. Most of the Marine Corps leadership had fought in WWII and Korea, so they knew war. They didn't know diplomacy, just the arts and skills of a warrior. Vietnam began to change that as the malignancy of the Korean cease fire began to spread into the politico-military operational doctrine. Outright victory, Douglas MacArthurs words, "There is no substitute for victory" became meaningless.
The various high level war colleges that senior Colonels and newly minted Brigadier Generals attend cirriculums' changed to incorporate this new no-win doctrine. Hearts and minds, not pincer movements and flanking of armies became the emphasis. After all we had MAD for the BIG ONE and all other wars would be by proxy, thus needing the skilled diplomat-warrior, not the fighting-killer.
We now see with crystal clarity the smooth talking general at the new conference talking of rebuilding schools, marketplaces and the like. Never a "no comment" on ongoing operations because the ongoing operations aren't going on with relentless aggression, just sporatic thrusts with blood tipped names like "Operation Arrowhead Ripper", which to date has probably expended several millions of dollars to kill a score of the enemy.
Just as the F8U Crusader was known as "The Last Gunfighter" and the F8U Phantom intitially became known as a limited capability aircraft, thus giving birth to "Top Gun" , changes are drastically needed. We need to get our generals off the TV screen, out of war colleges that teach diplomacy not fighting skills and we need a larger contingent in the armed forces that actually meet the enemy. Most in the services personel support the fighter, they are not warriors who close with the enemy an actually fight. In Vietnam it was something on the order of 35% that actually faced the enemy.
If we don't make these changes then more wives and chaplains will continue to make the long painful walk to the widows door.
New Gallup data show confidence in Congress at all time low
Just 14% of Americans have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in Congress.
This 14% Congressional confidence rating is the all-time low for this measure, which Gallup initiated in 1973. The previous low point for Congress was 18% at several points in the period of time 1991 to 1994.
Congress is now nestled at the bottom of the list of Gallup's annual Confidence in Institutions rankings, along with HMOs. Just 15% of Americans have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in HMOs. (By way of contrast, 69% of Americans have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the military, which tops the list. More on this at galluppoll.com on Thursday).
It’s worth remembering that Congress is basically nothing more than a mechanism for the representation of the people’s wishes. We all can’t go to Washington. So we elect men and women and send them off in our stead. It’s not an optimal situation, it seems to me, when such a low percentage of average Americans have confidence in this system.
Generally speaking, Americans have been skeptical about Congress for decades now. But the current 14% confidence rating for Congress is down from 19% last year and is the lowest in Gallup’s history, surpassing the 18% confidence in Congress measured in 1991, 1993 and 1994.
Americans' are generally in a sour mood, as discussed here. The particularly low rating for Congress this year thus represents a continuation of the existing low esteem in which Congress is held, coupled with a strongly negative mindset on the part of the American public.
Some very interesting aspects to the tidal wave that might hit.....keep up the fight..time to call not email..big vote Friday ..call your Senator today please,pretty please with cake and ice cream on top.
The Preferences Are Coming – Twelve Million of Them
By Lloyd Billingsley
FrontPageMagazine.com | June 21, 2007
The 12 million or more who entered the United States illegally, and would gain United States citizenship under the current immigration proposal, Senate Bill 1348, will qualify for race preferences and privileges for which the majority of Americans are not eligible. This is not fair.
"I have an interesting way to fix Congress - MORE congress critters!!
Let's look at the Consitution - in particular, article I - it fixes the MAX number of Representitives at 1:30000, and for many years, that WAS the number, until the House got too big for the chamber in the Capitol, which is when we fixed the number at 435 Reps. The design of a building seems to be a really silly reason to change the government.
Right now, each House member represents roughly 690,000 people. It's a BIG job, for which they get paid a LOT, it's a LOT of POWER, and they have a LOT of influence
Now, picture we go back to 1:30K - or we have 10 THOUSAND congress critters. What kind of influence will ONE of them have? He only has 10K constiuents - that fixes how much money he is willing to spend, and how much power he will have, and guess what? You might even get to see and KNOW the candidates."
Posted by: kg2v at June 21, 2007 6:52 AM
God Speed to the Atlantis crew of seven. It will be good to see them safely home. With them in mind, here is some art-tuh (heavy art) with a little more action.
Antoine Coysevox (1640-1720)
RE: Bill Gates....
Gates spoke at Harvard recently, urging graduating students to take on the "world's deepest inequities [including] world hunger ... the scarcity of clean water ... children who die from diseases we can cure".
Gates could be right about the clean water. I am not sure the market is the one to trust to provide it. Unlike salty dogs, us upstaters and inland empire mutts boat and swim and fish only in fresh water. Upstate summer is spent on and in the fresh water of the Fingerlakes and Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. The locks and canals and the Thousand Islands are made for exploring by boat and Lake Ontarios' eastern shore has long stretch shoreline featuring the only large freshwater dunes in the northeastern states at Sandy Pond. So many of the good things in life come from having access to an abundance of fresh, clean water. Some industries have abused that access.
""The writ to use force against him [Saddam] and his regime was cogent and persuasive. But the decision to turn that deterrent, punitive, and preventive action into the occasion for elaborate democratic reconstruction was, alas, ill-conceived. Iraq was not that important to us. It could seem that important...only by imagining that an utterly transformed Iraq would be an outpost of liberal democracy in the Middle East...and that Iraq in turn would utterly transform the whole Middle East into a land of milk and honey, not to mention democracy and peace."
"...ill-conceived..." ? I don't think so. It was/is brilliant. It is also noble. Costly mistakes were made in this war, hat/tip to Bremer, but the intent is the nonpareil. I still have hope, and I am sick of those singing the blues after the fact, and before the finale. God, why don't people do what they learned when they were little: If you don't have anything nice to say, say nothing!
Candidates who give me the skeeves. Kucinich. ew. I know he's not considered a real candidate, but he'd give me the heebie jeebies if he ran for janitor.
Gates: Wonderful philanthropist. If they'd fly a few planes over Africa and spray out some DDT and kill the mosquitoes, that would take care of the number one cause of death on the planet. But then there would be millions more to starve to death. Just do what Oprah did and build schools for women. Educate the women and the culture is changed. First lesson: Take these birth control pills......
I tend to disagree with your Gates comment. Only Africans can fix Africa.
Midnight Sun today. Long days up North.
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Dawson, Yukon Territory
Sunrise: 3:46 AM
Sunset: 12:50 AM
Sunrise: 4:27 AM
Sunset: 11:37 PM
Solstice--longest day of year. except for the last day i spent with my ex--THAT was the longest day of all infinity.
Hahaha. Good one. It does not sound like you want to get married again anytime soon Buddy. Can't say as many people would blame you. It can be a real tough deal. Luckily though there is always cigareets and whusky. heh. And gambling.
Sounds to this voluptuary that you need some mothrin'. I specialize in being The Step-Mother of Your Dreams.
Just answer the following trutfully and I'll see if I can mother youse:
1. Are youse fat?
2. Do you make your bed?
3. Kin youse cook? (Cuz I am not that gud.)
4. Do you like to be tucked in?
5. What kind of bedtime stories do youse lik?
Beulah the Rent-a-Step-Mother
I agree. I think that's what Oprah knows, as well. She's just giving them a small start, although I read she's opened several more schools. Her point, and yours, I'm sure, is that the educated women will spread their knowledge so that others will come to the knowledge and begin to grow. Dumping money on them doesn't work. Education is the key. No one can steal it.
(I wasn't much of an Oprah fan before she did this, but I am now.)
Beulah, Patina, thanks y'all for the counseling, y'all crack me up, whoever y'all is
Beulah, Ha! Have you ever had your lips inflated with snake venom?