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, January 30. 2010
A re-post from 2006: Dem Leaders Issue "Happiness Manifesto:" Promise "Heaven, Now!: Admit "We are Commies!" and Propose "TotaliCAREianism" for USA, "Permanent Joy for All of the Little People"
At a news conference late last night following a special meeting of Democrat Party leaders, the Dems announced "We are sort-of Communists."
The eagerly-awaited announcement came as a relief to the nation's Democrats, who have longed for the day when they could come out of the closet and begin to explain their goals and ideals clearly, instead of pussy-footing around and hemming and hawing.
When asked what had brought the Party to this point, a spokesman stated:
Their 2006 Campaign press release, which has been over two generations in preparation, is titled "A Manifesto for the Future" and subtitled "A New Brave New World Deal for America." It appears to offer something for everyone. Major sections excerpted below:
NO TAXES!!! No more complicated tax forms, and no more scary IRS!!! How can we do this? Trying to regulate businesses is too slow and too difficult. We'll just take them all over, and they will work for The Good of All instead of the wealthy few!!! We are tired of trying raise tax rates. We'll take all of the money!!! It is simpler for government - and for you - for your government to own everything, instead of collecting taxes. Plus you won't need money anymore!!!
FREE MEDICAL CARE!!! Free medical attention will be available in our special government Happy Health Control Centers, with euthanasia cheerfully and painlessly prescribed for those who feel "really sick as shit," by our buxom People's Paradise Express Hostesses. And for you gals: Free required abortion for all!!! (but depending on genetic analysis and Government Health Dept. scientifically-determined population and genetic needs.) Free treatment of disease based on modern, advanced and Scientific Cost-Benefit Analysis!!!
DEEPLY SATISFYING WORK FOR ALL!!! No more money worries or job worries. We'll take care of it. We will find work for you to do!!! All will work and will have deeply personally satisfying work for the good of all!!!- 100% employment, when and where we decide best. This will give the people the Human Dignity they want, and all will feel like part of the beautiful village. No-one will be too disabled for the Human Dignity of Deeply Satisfying Work, and even old age will no longer deprive you of that Deep Satisfaction (until you are no longer useful).
NO MORE MONEY WORRIES!!! Since the government will run the businesses, you won't need any money!!! All of your needs will be met by a loving, caring government whose experts know what is best for your happiness in life, based on Modern Scientific Psychological Studies. No more envy, no more antiquated and fatiguing ambition, no more disappointment and depression - and no more bills!!!
FREE HOUSING FOR ALL, NO HOUSEWORK - AND FREE TV!!! Everyone will have their own personal, comfortable, temperature-regulated "Happy Cube" with a Free Wide Screen Government TV with FREE Government Stations just for you, to keep you entertained and happy in your Free Government cube - including 24/hr/day Psychologist-designed scientific PORN!!! And with expert psychologist-sexologist performers!!! And there will be co-ed Happy-Hygiene Units on every floor!!! Plus no more housework!!! You won't own a house to bother with!!!
NO HOMEWORK!!!! You don't need no education. (Our Expert Trainers will prepare you efficiently for the work for which are are best suited, as scientifically-determined.) We have already eliminated most of the "hard stuff," from education, but why bother with any confusing ideas and math and history dates and all of that difficult nonsense that gets in the way of happiness and TV and much-needed relaxation (unless the government determines that you have a needed aptitude). There will be no need to continue to strain your brain!!! We will worry about things for you!!! No complicated information to make people unhappy. We will let you know what you need to know to make a good adjustment and to be happy. No books - who needs those boring old things and their old-fashioned ideas? Everyone would rather just relax!!! Government TV is more fun and more relaxing, and less confusing. No news - we will worry about that for you! Why worry your brain? You work hard - take it EASY!
NO DIRTY DIAPERS AND SCREAMING BRATS!!! Children will have all of their needs met in special cheerful and psychologist-designed government Child Full-Service Development Centers, so all Bio-Moms will be free for the deeply satisfying Work Satisfaction they have sought for so long. No more dirty diapers and no more screaming brats. Government Growth Adjustment Expert Specialists will handle all of the problems, and take care of them for you from the day they are born, including orthodontia (if cost-effective) and including Science Diet Kiddie-Kibbles. You did your part, Bio-Moms. Now we'll do the rest!!!
NO ANNOYING SUNDAY MORNING CHURCH!!! You can sleep in every Sunday Morning, but you might be lucky enough to have an important deeply satisfying job for the good of all on Sunday morning. You won't need a confusing, inscrutable god - we'll be your god, but unlike the old god, we will give you everything you really need and want - for free. We care about you more than that obsolete, demanding, no-fun god did. And all religious disagreements will be solved!!! For fun on Sunday, try our Government Scientific 6-hole Happy People Miniature Golf Courses, or our Happy Bowler 10-foot bowling alleys, where everyone is a winner!!! Or just stay in your Happy Cube and watch TV in peace!!! We can give you Heaven - today!!!
FREE SEX FOR ALL WITHOUT COMMITTMENT!!! You may think you have that already, but we will take it to another level for you. Marriage is obsolete. Who really wants to put up with that boring, aging spouse and those predictable, dull bedroom habits? No more marriage, which means no more marital problems!!! Bring anyone you want to your personal and private sleeping cubicle in your Free Government Housing Home Sweet Home Happy Cube!! Sex for the little people and workers should be no more of a big deal than going to the bathroom: we've suffered enough bourgeois sentimentality. We will stand up firmly for Scientific Sexual Health and Hygiene.
WE'LL BE GREEN!!! No more cars!!! No-one will need cars except for Government Authorities and the Happy Thought Police forces. Everyone's Free Government Housing Home Sweet Home Happy Cube will be within healthy walking or biking distance - based on scientific calculations - of their assigned deeply satisfying job. That is what we are willing to do for The Environment!!! And your Free Government Bio-degradable Clothing will be specially designed for your outdoor needs, produced by happy workers with environmental values in their manufacture. And, because we will be Green, there will be No More Bad Weather!!!
FREE HEALTH!!! There will be no smoking, no alcohol, and no meat! These things will be reserved to console your over-stressed and sacrificial Leaders. Thus everyone will have free health, along with our expert-designed tofu-based diets and the daily exercise programs which will be required, for your convenience and health, at your deeply satisfying workplace. Those with genetic disorders will, as is rational, spare the people from the burden of their children. In this way, we will achieve a healthy, happy nation. One day's use of Soma or marijuana will be issued to workers at the end of each workday, to ensure happiness, a positive attitude, self-esteem, and a peaceful spirit. And, if you get sick, you just go to one of our Happy Health Control Centers, where you can peacefully unburden Society of your problem!!! No more guilt!!! And free sanitary crematorial services!
FREE FOOD!!! Since you won't need money, our Government Free Food Happy Pantries will offer free food for all, with special expert nutritionist-designed, organic-like balanced diets designed for your particular needs and work!!! No more worries about what to fix for supper. We'll worry about it for you, with your health and happiness in mind!!! It will be meat-free, poison-free, fat-free healthy nutritional substances, which will please our wonderful progressive vegans!!! Just add water to your scientifically freeze-dried and dehydrated tofu Lovely Health Treat!!!
WORLD PEACE!!! Not to worry. We'll figure it all out, because We Love World Peace. World Peace is just Great!!! You can just be happy and we can do the thinking for you. If war is needed to create peace, our Swedish and Swiss mercenaries will take care of it for you. And you won't even need to know!!!
Continue reading "A re-post from 2006: Dem Leaders Issue "Happiness Manifesto:" Promise "Heaven, Now!: Admit "We are Commies!" and Propose "TotaliCAREianism" for USA, "Permanent Joy for All of the Little People""
Friday, September 4. 2009
Re-posted from 2006: This dropped in over the transom:
Sales: "You want answers?"
Posted by The Chairman in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 10:19 | Comments (4) | Trackbacks (0)
Thursday, September 18. 2008
A re-post from a year and a half ago -
Jim Harrison: Hunter, chef, author, and all-around cool dude. Interviewed in New York Times Books. Got to love this guy. And how about his eager pup?
Photo credit: Jeff Topping for the New York Times
Tuesday, August 26. 2008
Sunday, February 3. 2008
A repost from May, 2005
A reader sent this 1954 personal letter from Dwight Eisenhower to a relative, in which he discusses governance and the Supreme Court. It is a pleasure to read, and it gave me a better sense of who he was. A sample:
In Ike, an abundance of common sense and practicality became uncommon sense. Read entire letter.
Image: "I Like Ike" was the slogan of 1952's Draft Eisenhower movement. The Left always viewed Ike as stupid. Some things never change.
Thursday, October 18. 2007
A re-post from the distant past
You think your dog is smart? Or do you think you are smart? Jim was famous in the 1930s, and not just for finding coveys of quail:
"Such were Jim's powers that he could even look into the future and foretell coming events. For seven years in a row he was shown a list of entries in the Kentucky Derby, and picked the winner each time in advance of the race. With equal ease he could correctly predict the sex of babies yet unborn. In 1936, just before the World Series games were played, Van Arsdale, in the presence of friends, placed before Jim two pieces of paper upon which the names of the teams had been written. He explained, "Jim, I have here the names of the two teams that will be playing in the World Series. Will you show us the one that will win?" Jim placed a paw on the slip bearing the word "Yankees." Later events proved him correct."
Read the whole thing, by Henry Ferguson in Rural Missouri
Tuesday, May 29. 2007
Posted by The Chairman in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 19:28 | Comment (1) | Trackbacks (0)
Monday, March 26. 2007
Bruce Kesler wonders how important medical insurance reform will be in the next election. He sees no "crisis," and takes a closer look at the stats.One quote:
Tyler Cowen takes a look at the French system, which is often held up as an ideal, and it isn't so rosy.
The moral of the story is that there is no free lunch, and there is no perfect system.
Friday, March 2. 2007
Is Bush too Christian to be an effective president?
I know this is a slightly provocative question. I have never met the man, but I do respect his seriousness about his job and I do believe that he is greatly misunderestimated.
But I'd like raise the issue. In at least two critical areas - illegal immigration and defence against Jihad, Bush has been unwilling to be tough and ruthless in the American interest - in the interest of the folks who pay his salary. FDR would have flattened Sadr City years ago, and Truman would have too. And certainly FDR would have closed our borders tight. He did.
Is Bush "too compassionate" and too Christian to be a strong President?
Friday, February 23. 2007
FDR was an impressive politician, a true noblesse oblige aristocrat (who never knew a working man, and never had the chance to find out how wise they/we are), with a fine temperament (no doubt those 10 martinis/day helped with that).
He latched onto a fad pressed upon him by his advisors - the communalism fad of the world intelligentsia of the 30s - and almost broke the back of American freedom in the process.
Not being particularly scholarly - or wise - himself, he bought into the notion that The Depression was due to Capitalism, requiring repair if not replacement by the geniuses in government. Good wartime leader? Yes.
Moral: beware of fads, and stay away from cranks.
A quote from a piece in View from 1776 on the subject:
Ah, control from the top. Of course. Isn't that always the solution for us foolish citizens? Hmmm, but isn't it "the top" that provides our basic education, too? Aw heck, never mind: Everybody knows that most of the smart people in America are too busy with life to get involved in politics. But that old FDR arrogant impulse, that views folks in government as being smarter than citizens, as knowing "what is best for us," persists. I know enough of them, and I can tell you that they are, on the whole, narcissistic idiots and sociopaths with a slick talk....with rare exceptions, who sooner or later get disgusted and quit. Have you ever known a politician who you would want in charge of your personal life?
But the Stalinist impulse is still alive, still dangerous, and still wrong.
Wednesday, February 21. 2007
This year, or this month, or, more likely, this very day, we have failed to practise ourselves the kind of behaviour we expect from other people.
As a one-time Episcopalian-Anglican before I was found, all of this both tickles me and saddens me. Is it what Dr. Bliss could term "the narcisissism of small differences", or is it about following Christ first and foremost?
Are the primates right? Don't ask me. I try to keep it simple, and I do not think about gays very much. Got many more important things to concern me in this brief life and I, in general, find other people's sexual predilections to be an unpleasant and inappropriate subject, which is best left alone. None of my business, and I do not care to hear about it.
Monday, February 19. 2007
This came in over the transom:
A young woman was about to finish her first year of college. Like so many others her age, she considered herself to be very liberal and was very much in favor of the redistribution of wealth. She was deeply ashamed that her father was a Republican, a feeling she openly expressed. Based on the lectures that she had participated in and the occasional chat with a professor, she felt that her father had for years harbored an evil, selfish desire to keep what he thought should be his.
One day she was challenging her father on his opposition to higher taxes on the rich and the addition of more government welfare programs. The self-professed objectivity proclaimed by her professors had to be the truth and she indicated so to her father. He responded by asking how she was doing in school. Taken aback, she answered rather haughtily that she had a 4.0 GPA and let him know that it was tough to maintain, insisting that she was taking a very difficult course load and was constantly studying, which left her no time to go out and party like other people she knew. She didn't even have time for a boyfriend and didn't really have many college friends because she spent all her time studying.
Tuesday, February 13. 2007
Read this mention at Derbyshire about Nick Cohen's new book (discussed in the past here). Derbyshire noted that Dillow at Stumbling and Mumbling believes that the Left has plenty left to offer. Dillow accuses the Left of squandering opportunities and ideas, and of confusing statism with socialism.
Well, I enjoy reading Dillow regularly, but there is little he says with which I could agree. He is openly utopian which, for me (although I like Dillow from what I can tell) indicates a great misunderstanding of human nature, especially its "dark side," which afflicts poor, middle, and wealthy equally. Dillow's notions, like those of Labour, lead to situations such as this: 1/3 Britons now derive over 50% of their income from welfare and the dole (at Tangled Web). Extend that further? To 100%? So who is "greedy"? Indeed, who is truly greedy? Those who want to achieve, or those who want support from others?
For me, that would be the utopia of a serf on an estate, or of a cow in a barn. Dillow has no faith in people, it would seem to me, to find their own paths through life, and so I feel his utopianism is basically elitist and condescending. (My view tends towards the notion that Socialism, in practice, is Feudalism in new clothes and with new excuses.)
And I will answer one question posed by Mr. Dillow, who asked, "why, if a centrally planned economy is a stinking idea, should a centrally planned company be a good one?"
1. Government enforces its wishes with guns and jails, and corporations do not.
And, lastly and most importantly, 10: Freedom. Economic freedom, risk-taking, failure, choice, etc. is so fundamental to the freely-chosen life of a free man that no bowl of lentils, no matter how tasty, should have the power to buy off part of his soul and his dignity so he can stand in a warm barn. Voluntary serfdom: Not a credit to the human spirit. Today, government builds and maintains the roads on which capitalism can drive. Give the government the steering wheel too, and they can control everything in your life. That would be a morally very bad thing even if it could be done successfully - and they would want to lock me up for having a social-psychiatric ailment like "Independence Disorder" or "Ambition Disorder.".
Mr. Dillow, the need for socialist measures is done. We have enough of them: No-one freezes, no-one starves, people get the education they need, the medical treatment the government planners want them to have, and they can spend their life on the dole for a sore back if they want to. Many, many votes have thus been bought already. And this is all thanks to the transfer of money from capitalism's miracle of wealth-creation, the miracle of markets and market incentives, to the non-producing but ever-arrogant parasitic government.
Yes, socialism is alive in all Western nations in hundreds of government redistribution programs, but we have had enough of it. No more required. Material needs have been met. Leave the rest - the pursuit of happiness and dignity and self-respect - to the people. No-one can confer these things of the spirit on anyone else: find out what people are capable of if not treated like imbeciles and cripples by a condescending, vote-buying government.
Sunday, February 11. 2007
Re-posted from June, 2005
This is a lengthy (14 p), scholarly, reflective essay on the history and evolution of modern conservative thinking from the 1930s to the present.
A quote from a section on marriage:
A concluding quote:
Read entire in New Pantagruel
Saturday, February 3. 2007
Did Hillary actually say that? Yes, I heard it. And I think she means it.
Not only is it creepy - it is even creepier that the MSN is not reporting it. This is Chavez-type stuff. If she truly believes that she can "take" those profits, whose profits can she not "take"?
And, by the way - is she forgetting who gets those profits? Regular Americans, in their IRAs. And is she forgetting who earns them? Lots of people who work far harder than she does, and are far smarter too. Exxon is one of the best-run businesses in the world, dealing with the most volatile of markets, and contending with endless governmental constrictions of what they want to do (eg, building refineries, or obtaining product). Those restrictions, of course, drive the price of oil upwards.
Tuesday, January 30. 2007
A quote from Derbyshire's piece on the book:
There is an extract from the book at The Observer, from which I quote:
Let's pray that this book from this well-known recovering Left-Liberal, pink-diaper baby will have an impact on the UK.
Tuesday, January 16. 2007
Hadn't realized that Bill of INCD Journal is in Fallujah. From all I have heard, a truly God-forsaken place.
In his way to Iraq, he had the kind of conversation with someone who equates the US with terrorists - the sort of conversation we all can fall into, and then regret. Try explaining the Jacksonian view of the world to a young Icelandic pacifist woman.
Bill links to a fine essay by Walter Russell Mead on The Jacksonian Tradition, which I highly recommend, and will re-read. One quote:
I am a Jacksonian. I feel like the guy in Bourgeois Gentilhomme who learns for the first time that he is speaking prose. Whole essay here.
Thursday, January 11. 2007
Nick Saban's deal at Alabama sounds generous. James Joyner spells out the rationale, at TCS: Crimson With Envy. Some folks just refuse to understand that market forces apply to labor. Alabama football is a big business.
Anyone would envy Saban's deal. So do whatever you need to do to compete with the Sabans of the world, if you want the same deal. But you cannot compare them with English Profs. Any moron can blather about phallocentric hegemonic narratives, but running a world class football team is something entirely different.
Posted by The Chairman in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 20:46 | Comments (13) | Trackbacks (0)
Tuesday, January 9. 2007
Best summary I've seen on the challenges China faces and will face as wealth and economic freedom confront the totalitarian Communist Party. One quote from Huttonon in The Observer:
Wednesday, December 27. 2006
Some Warren Buffet aphorisms, from Businesspundit:
Friday, December 15. 2006
Tuesday, December 12. 2006
Crittenden's comments are perfect. Hilarious, too.
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6
This is not really "giving in secret," as Christ demanded, but they all deserve a plug for their good work. Here are the worthy groups to whom I am giving this year:
and I am adding the Prison Fellowship to the list this year - what a great organization. Please consider them in your giving this year - it means a lot more than a new cashmere sweater.
Posted by The Chairman in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 08:14 | Comments (3) | Trackbacks (0)
Thursday, December 7. 2006
Well, it's time again for my Christmas Wish List.
And now that we finally have a Dem congress, maybe I will get everything I want. Here it is:
1. Free money. Lots of it. Why can't the government just print some extra and mail it to us? Why? What would it cost them? Those stingy Repubs just won't do it. Grinches. I'd bet it costs less than 1/10th of a penny to print a ten thousand dollar bill. And at a 50% federal tax rate, they would get $5000 back for a $.001 investment in one year. How bad is that?
2. Free "Legal Care." You have no idea how much my companies
3. Free Dental Care. Do you know what my periodontist wants to fix a bad tooth? More than I pay my tax accountant. You age, and the teeth just don't hold up. It's not fair. Gimme money.
4. Free college and grad school. Got kids? Grandkids? Someone has to pay the bill. Why me? These are after-tax dollars, and it hurts. Let Uncle Sam pay the bill, if he wants everyone to be overeducated cube dwellers, squinting at screens like I am doing right now.
5. Free Chateau Margaux '89. Hey - that could be a slogan, like "Free Mumia" or The Chicago 7 or whoever. Why should I have to work my butt off for a basic happiness? Not fair at all, because some can afford it without even thinking. Happiness is in the Constitution, isn't it? Or is it in the Declaration of Happiness? You just know that somebody, somewhere, is making a profit on this stuff.
6. Free cars. All of our salesmen get them. Why can't I? I'll take two of these. One red, one yellow.
7. Free vacations. Why should I pay for them? I need them, to maintain my productivity and health and my cheerful approach to life and work. It's a Right, isn't it? And when I am unhappy, everyone else gets unhappy. Not good.
8. Free tickets home for Christmas for illegals. One way. Fix your own countries, people. This one is ours. We, and our ancestors, have had to fix it a few times, and we are still trying. No reason you cannot do the same.
9. Free Digital Cameras. Why should a wealthy nation like ours require folks to buy their own, when they become obsolete in a year? We, as a nation, can afford to take care of everyone's camera needs, if we only cared enough. Photos are a basic right, enshrined in the Constitution - right? It's like free speech, or free self-expression, or something like that.
10. Free ammo. Do you have any idea what the new, lead-free ammo costs? Any nation with gun freedoms can surely afford free ammo for all of its citizens. If we can send a man to the moon, ...etc. Plus it's also in the Constitution. Let's begin with shotgun ammo. The 9 mm stuff can come later: it's called "incrementalism."
11. Free Veterinary (and Medical) Care. Do you have any idea what the wife's vet bills add up to? Worse than our Barrister's, I'd bet. His wife has more horses that mine does, but mine has more doggone dogs. Not to mention my hunting dogs. Vet bills are far worse than medical bills, or otherwise I would go to my Vet when I get sick like Skink does. Free Vet Care, NOW! Including dog Stress Management! When I miss a bird, my dog gets very stressed out... and I miss a lot. If you really cared, you would pay my dog's shrink bills.
That's it for this year. Back to ya next time, Santa,
With deep appreciation for all that you do - we love ya, dude.
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