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
Tuesday, March 5. 2013
Women earn a higher rate of return from a college degree than men.
If you aren’t smart enough to distinguish reality from non-reality, you shouldn’t be allowed around kids.
What does DHS need with 2,700 armored vehicles?
VDH: Journalists as Ring Wraiths - When you’ve got a country to transform, any caviling is disloyalty.
Bill Ayers in Moorhead
Carbon Power Politics - The next EPA chief and next phase of the Obama green agenda.
Asian-Americans Solidly Prefer Democrats - Sixty-one percent of young adult Asian-Americans identify as/lean Democratic
China's dangerous housing bubble, with Potemkin cities
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Re: What does DHS need with 2,700 armored vehicles?
more to the point, what federal laws does the DHS think it needs these to enforce?
Rick Moran: What does DHS need with 2,700 armored vehicles?
They're used for disaster relief.
Sixty-one percent of young adult Asian-Americans identify as/lean Democratic. Why?
For the same reason that Russians are depressed all the time and return to their feudal overlord roots after a brief flirtation with democracy. Its cultural - Asian societies are paternalistic in nature and there is nothing more paternalistic than the Democrats.
What does DHS need with 2,700 armored vehicles?
For grants to police departments. We have three county Sheriffs in SC who have tanks - honest to god, no joke, full size tanks for their CERT and SWAT teams. And one Sheriff has a surplus APC.
Bill Ayers in Moorhead
Love the money quote from the course Professor: "....Ayers was one of many who had contributed to the ending of the Vietnam War. Some did it by protesting, some did it by singing songs, and some did it by blowing up buildings. Ayers fell into the latter category, although it wouldn’t have been Professor Grineski’s choice."
And there you have it. The reason why jerk offs like Ayers are lauded by our academic betters is that, while Ayers may have blown up a building or two, Grineski didn't so he can take the moral high ground by disapproving the act, but forgiving it because he personally wouldn't have done similar. Morons like Grineski are the people running our educational system - no wonder we're screwed.
The next EPA chief and next phase of the Obama green agenda.
McCarthy was Connecticut's DEP commissioner for five years and I worked with her (along with several others - I'm not that important) on several projects important to recreational fishing, boating and coastal issues. I'll say this - she is personable, has a wicked sense of humor, smart and well intentioned. She is a good leader even if she has some rather screwy ideas. She is a life long bureaucrat having worked for government her entire professional life - and that is a real problem as she does not have a feel for reality or common sense. On the other hand, she does listen - she probably won't agree, but she does listen and occasionally does the right thing - she fought to separate hunting and fishing license fees from the General budget - unsuccessfully, but she tried hard. So she's not all bad.
The militarization of our civilian police forces is a worrisome trend that has been creeping along for some time now.
Even in my small town (less than 6,000 people) the local force has managed to acquire a converted armored car for themselves. They already carried M4 carbines in the trunks of the cruisers.
The Founders were well aware of the dangers a Standing Army posed to it's own citizenry. History shows that, without an active war to fight, they ALWAYS turn on their own. The Founders envisioned a small, controllable, Army. Supplemented by a Volunteer based Militia, formed as needed (see 2A), then dissolved once the crisis was past.
I am no conspiracy theorist, but this trend (the militarization of civilian police) is obvious,undeniable and frightening. Look at the video. Even minus the armored vehicle, do those boys look anything at all like a civilian police force?
The last administration used the crisis of 9/11 to enact the loathsome Patriot act and the current crop has been turning the screws as fast as they can.
This dog needs to be brought to heel, before it slips it's chain.
Bruce McQuain: “Global Warming” shadenfreude, citing Lawrence Solomon: Not easy being green[/i]
Fun! So many strawman!
Lawrence Solomon: In perhaps the cruelest blow of all, the believers learned just this week — in a study released by the National Opinion Research Center at Barack Obama’s University of Chicago no less — that the skeptics haven’t been marginalized as science-denying ignoramuses all these years.
That's just silly. Climate skeptics have been prevalent in culture for quite some time, including wielding significant political power. They just have little influence in scientific circles.
Lawrence Solomon: In Norway, a mere 11.8% of the population fear it, in Great Britain 16.3%, in the U.S. 19.6%. Even in relatively alarmist Canada the great majority take global warming in stride — only 27.8% see it as doom-worthy.
The question concerned whether climate change was "extremely dangerous". Not only is anthropogenic climate change preventable, but humans can adapt.
Lawrence Solomon: "The Holy Grail of proof to most doomsayers, of course, is the temperature, which global warming models insisted would rise in lock-step with increases in carbon dioxide."
Um, no. Climatologists do not think that temperature will rise in lock-step with CO2.
Bruce McQuain: It was unproven theory presented as fact.
"Facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty." — Stephen Jay Gould
yes, I see. every "disaster relief" truck needs anti-mine floorboards, gun ports, armor, turrets and armored tires. Just In Case.
M1A1 Abrams tanks are used for "parking control". F-22s are for "bird watching". Patriot missiles are for fourth of july celebrations. predator drones are the latest in the RC-craze.
Guess they will be handy for controlling the inevitable food riots where the turret mounted food dispenser will be handy. Though would think surplus tank recovery vehicles and 4x4's would be more useful.
Tom Francis: Its cultural - Asian societies are paternalistic in nature and there is nothing more paternalistic than the Democrats.
Anyway, studies have shown that Asian Americans are more likely to support government programs, cultural tolerance, and immigration. These policies align best with the Democratic Party.
I don't like the militarization of the police, but the real reason congress was opposed to a standing army was the cost, especially the cost of mounted troops; blatherings of the founding fathers notwithstanding. short term state militia was a lot cheaper than regular forces until it became obvious how inadequate the militia was (and always has been).
the best counter example to your claim about the army turning on its own is the US army, which has never done so. (during the Civil War, the army stayed loyal, enlisted soldiers almost to a man, all but one northern born officer and about half the southern officers, and no regular formations joined the confederacy)
They're also used for border security. In any case, this purchase apparently wasn't by the DHS, but the Marines.
smart and well intentioned.
Do you know how many millions have died because of the "smart and well intentioned"? Take the millions killed because of the DDT ban for instance.
Lots of speculation here, at this article titled Why Are Asians So Democratic? on why Asians tend to vote democratic
Insty has a link this morning that updates us on the pasty "gunsmithing" incident. A letter sent home to parents ended with:
Our school counselor is available to meet with any students who have the need to do so next week. In general, please remind them of the importance of making good choices.
That last is because the school certainly isn't demonstrating the idea of "good choices". And really, would the kids need therapy if the teachers didn't freak out at even images of the Devil in pastry?
BTW, the pastry was apparently a Danish. Damn Europeans. What's next, a kid being expelled for a unintentional jelly doughnut discharge?
Look - that's what she is - I can't help it if I liked her, enjoyed working with her on issues and found her to be engaged and interesting personality.
Save the snark for somebody else.
Zack do me a favor and just ignore anything I might comment on. You and I do not live in the same universe and it is just going to be annoying moving forward.
Take care - all the best and such.
Bryan Caplan: Indians vote Democratic because they correctly sense that Democrats respect them more.
There's certainly that. Democrats seem to revel in diversity, while Republicans are often seen to sneer at it. People may feel they are true-blue Americans, but still hold to their ethnicity. The immigration debate has only served highlighted these differences.
are you seriously suggesting DHS would use armored fighting vehicles to shoot illegal immigrants? start gun battles with terrorists? take on the zetas? you're talking future demoncraptic voters. the US policy is to give arms to narco-terrorists, not fight them. if just one illegal immigrant were gunned down by a DHS tank, little barry's domestic policy would go up in flames.
and big deal, DHS owns the tanks it bought through the Marines. big f'ing deal.
I won't argue your point regards cost of maintaining a standing army, as it is certainly valid and one of the factors involved.
As to your counter example; that's what I get for using absolutes (and capitalizing them, no less). You are of course correct and I should have said "very often" or some such.
In fact, it is the stellar track record of our Armed Forces in this regard, as well as the proliferation of groups like Oath Keepers that continues to give me hope.
Why are various civilian departments of the federal government "armoring up". The recent massive and unexplained purchase of ammunition is inexplicable. This is what countries do in preparation for war. Now the purchase of what amounts to a urban tank makes you shake your head in wonder. What is our federal government up to? They are not some independent group or country they are our employees and they owe us an explanation. If this is nothing more then a terrible and massive waste of money then fess up to it. But if they tell us nothing what are we to think.
My theory is that the federal government knows a massive economic collapse is inevitable and they want these tanks and ammo to protect themselves. They see what is going on in Greece, Spain, Italy and portugal and they don't want angry citizens coming to them demanding an explanation. I also don't think this idea of buying massive amounts of ammo and urban warfare equipment just occurred to multiple department heads by coincidence. This had to come from a higher source. Someone has decided to create a massive in-country civilian army to do something. What is their intent? They owe us an explanation.
notice.. when he gets cornered, he resorts to the editorial "we". probably needs the mutual support of the Others.
when armies mobilize, they call up the reserves. do you see large numbers of federal agents being "called up" or hired? Are you really afraid of overweight TSA dudes with 9mm popguns? if the army were redeployed to the US, or reserves/guard mobilized and unreliable officers and men culled, then worry.
I have thousands of 12 gauge shells at hand (because I use them at a prodigious rate). Am I any more dangerous than if I had only a hundred?
let's not lose sight of what's important. the fed is wasting money with play tanks and someone needs to examine that, rather than the fantasy Konspiracy (c)(tm)(r). the ammo purchases, as has been tediously explained before, is an open purchase order, another potential waste of money but not a sign of the apocalypse.
interesting, that oath keeper stuff. I have a friend who was an officer in the artillery who explained it.
Don't underestimate ordinary fraud on the ammo purchases and bureaucratic self aggrandizement on the part of various federal and local agencies; indulging themselves with fancy gear.
While looking into this I ran across these posts by Donald Sensing regarding the amount of ammo being bought. Looks like the figure of "billions" of rounds purchased is an error caused by misreading federal purchase order codes. So it's only Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of thousands of rounds!!
There's some funny business about one of the ammo suppliers, too. Perhaps drastically underbidding procurement contracts to guarantee a particular supplier is awarded the supply agreement.
If you think about where Asians immigrate TO, this will answer your question: California, Portland, Seattle. All very liberals areas of our country.
I have a sibling who lives in Silicon Valley. A lone conservative in a vast sea of liberals. What has been told to me is that immigrants read the local newspaper and believe every word of it. They do not look at newspapers with skepticism and do not attempt to read any deeper into motives.
Damn you Wirraway! I come seeking me some evidence of konspiracy and all I get is this big serving of common sence.
"and big deal, DHS owns the tanks it bought through the Marines. big f'ing deal"
Thank you, wirraway, for saving me the trouble (and pleasure) of pointing out another half-truth from Zachriel, who, by the way, was once banned from another blog for the same argumentative behavior (doing my best James Taranto impression here). Nah, this is too easy, like shooting fish in a barrel: once again, another deception from Zachriel.
So you agree w/ TF, but insist on seeing yourself write extra euphamistic verbiage.
I gotta think the Yankees on this board laugh at someone who talks so much, and then doesn't even say anything new on the rare occasions that he's right.
The link to women's rate of return on degrees goes to the bio-crop piece instead . . . ?
"the best counter example to your claim about the army turning on its own is the US army, which has never done so."
The Confederate states might disagree a little with you there. The Union army did not "free lance" the Civil War, of course, and did the bidding of the elected civilian authorities, but when the time came, they fired their weapons, brother on brother, in the name of a cause they accepted. If it happened once, perhaps it could happen again? It's not just the militarization of local police forces that's worrisome to me; it's also the federalization of policing that raises flags.
I sneer at almost everyone who is different -- wrong sports jersey, wrong accent, other ranks, opposing parties, skeeters, kollege kids, but so what? do you people need personal validation about your diversity? do you get special points because you hang out with illegal forest peasants and I hire them as gardeners? as long as I'm not interfering with your economic life or burning down your mosks, so what if I think you and your people are dog vomit?
your basic blue-collar FDR-style democrat is just as disgusted with the effete excesses of the far left wing of your Party as any normal American.
the regular army in 1861 was small (and stayed small through the CW) and unrepresentative of the population, its not a good analog for what might happen tomorrow. you know serving members and veterans, they could be anyone from your kid sister, the guy down the street, you ... ask yourself how plausible it is that the people you know personally -- not wannabemilita wetdream parodies of The Gummint -- would participate in putting down widespread civil unrest by arrests and then ask yourself how many soldiers, ex-soldiers, etc., do you know who'd shoot American civilians?
a little dissent is a good idea, to keep the place on its toes.
wirraway: DHS owns the tanks it bought through the Marines
We already noted that DHS owns armored vehicles and use them for disaster work, as well as for border security. Drug gangs have access to military style weapons, including grenade launchers.
We used the word "apparently". Do you have evidence DHS owns the armored vehicles in question?
wirraway: I sneer at almost everyone who is different
Which is your right, but it's not effective politics.
wirraway: but so what? do you people need personal validation about your diversity?
That's just it. Some people actually enjoy diversity, and respect those who bring something new to the culture.
after taking a closer look at this, I'm not satisfied with the sources.
...banned from another blog for the same argumentative adolescent behavior....
I would accept and welcome the answer that they simply wanted to spend the money because it was in their budget or even that they used the purchase to pay off cronies who helped their party get elected. Just as the TSA recently spent a small fortune buying new uniforms for all their employees, just a total waste of money and inability to see the rest of the country is sufferring while they piss through money. But they didn't "just spend money because they had it". They bought ammo and urban tanks!!! For what? It makes no sense. What will they do with the ammo and tanks? But wait! It gets worse! All they have to do is explain it. Something, anything that would explain their need for billions of rounds of ammo and more tanks then the army has. But when reporters asked for the information through a FOIA request more then half the information was redacted. REALLY!!! What national security was being protected?? And that is all we get from them. No explanation, no plan on how this will all be used, nothing. They owe us an explanation. They owe us something better then a few shills making excuses for them.