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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Ex-Con Wins GOP Primary In Illinois

Paul McKinley will face confessed con Jesse Jackson, Jr. in the general election.


Chris Christie, Capitulator

CPAC doesn't want him, and for good reason:

The New Jersey governor, who has expressed concern about “an abundance of guns out there,” has said he backs the gun-control legislation currently on the books in his state, some of the nation’s most restrictive. Christie has also not been afraid to speak out against the National Rifle Association, calling an ad the group ran in the wake of the Newtown shooting “reprehensible” and “awful.”   

In another move that may distance him from conservatives, Christie, who boasts a 74 percent approval rating in New Jersey, is set to announce this afternoon that he will accept Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The State Of george Washington And Thomas Jefferson ...

...just passed the biggest tax hike in its history.

Let the protests and the tax-voting-incumbent-dumping candidacies begin!


Friday, February 22, 2013

Sequester Is Not Armageddon

Says Rand Paul.


Unclear Of The Job Description

John Kerry's first speech as Secretary of State addresses global warming.


Gun Pushes Pro-Obama Group's President Control Agenda - Now THAT Would Be News

Headline: Pro-Obama group pushes president's gun control agenda.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Conflict Of Visions

Colorado House of Representatives Rep. Joe Salazar is not overjoyed at the thought of armed women.

Randolph Roth, Ohio State University history professor says: "As I tell my female friends, as we move towards equality… you have start to killing more people...If you want to get rid of this gender business, you’ve got to start killing."

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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

And Kirk Thought His "Kobayashi Maru" Solution Was Clever

Students in a Johns Hopkins computer science class figure out how to game the grading curve - everybody gets a 0 on the test, therefore everyone gets an A.

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Friday, February 15, 2013

State Of The Union Analysis

Courtesy of CEI.

And also the Business Roundtable.


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Powerline Headline

10 Questions For the Science Deniers.

Question 10 caught my eye: "10. In 2005 the UN said there would be 50 million climate refugees because of rising sea levels and other effects of global warming by 2010. Where are they?"


Monday, February 11, 2013

Bill Nye

Not the meteorological science guy.


Friday, February 08, 2013

Elitism = Paternalism

This is a reprint of a June 19, 2006 post, with an update:


Rand Simberg links to this Marsblog post, which remarks on American media attitudes toward the general public (emphasis added to this and all following excerpted material):

Bluntly put, there is an elitist expectation [among the media] that the intolerant and easily-led dupes in flyover country might rise up in violence if told the whole truth...that -- like children -- the ignorant public at large must be protected from the unpleasant facts, since they cannot be trusted to integrate such information rationally and formulate a response which these elitists would approve of as sensible and reasonable. The press must therefore act as a gatekeeper, concealing the truth lest the redneck mob draw the "wrong" conclusions and be roused by some jingoistic demagogue to the pogroms and crusades which are its nature.

I was reminded of an incident during the 1992 presidential debate in Richmond, which I quoted in a recent comment thread at Samizdata:

The most notorious example of this [debate] format lending a platform for people who seek to be pampered by the nanny state was that pony-tailed guy from the 1992 presidential debate in Richmond who got up and asked then President George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot: "[H]ow can we, symbolically the children of the future president, expect the two of you – the three of you – to meet our needs."

I also recalled something I once read in a tale told by John Fund, which fortunately I was able to find documented here. He describes an encounter with several teenage girls in a department store during a 1984 trip to East Germany:

"We [Fund and his traveling companion(s), unnamed in the article] showed them our passports; they showed us their identity papers and told us a little about what it was like to live in a small town in East Germany. One of the girls told us, for example, the economy was so run-down that, when she lost an air valve on a bicycle tire, there was no way to replace it. People didn't have much money, but what was worse, there was nothing on which to spend it.

"Our travel visas expired at midnight, so by dusk we were on our way back to the glittering lights of West Berlin. The girls came along to the train station to bid us farewell. They had never seen the Berlin Wall, but they knew it was close. They gradually slowed their pace and stopped on a street corner just before we reached the railyard. One said, "You know, we really shouldn't go any further. We are not Berliners. If we are stopped, the guards will ask us why we are so close to the border zone.

"As we stood in the growing darkness, a feeling of incredible sadness came over me. here I was, in my mid-twenties, free as a bird. I wasn't rich, but I could go anywhere in the world from that street corner. They could not go another one hundred yards. Their world ended at the Wall. They could not go any further.

"... I asked what they wanted to be when they grew up. One said a beautician, one said a nurse, and one said a teacher. But the oldest and wisest, whose name was Monica, looked up at me with the most sorrowful face I have ever seen and said very slowly, 'It doesn't matter what we become when we grow up. They will always treat us like children.'

"... That sentence really defines Soviet communism in its waning years. There were very few knocks in the dead of night; people were rarely taken away to the gulag. There were very few summary executions. Instead, there was an insufferable and widespread paternalism. It was a dark cloud hanging over citizens. It weighed down their spirits and prevented them from maturing. Worse of all, it kept them from becoming that which was best within them.

"We parted almost tearfully. Monica and I exchanged addresses, and every year or so a postcard would come from her, and I would send some little trinket in the mail. She wrote that she had applied to a university, but she was rejected for her unacceptable views. She managed to get a job in a veterinarian's office."

Monica eventually came to the US, and Fund arranged for her to speak to some high schoolers:

"I swallowed my doubts and arranged a talk for Monica. It was a disaster. The students weren't openly disrespectful, but they whispered constantly during her remarks and now and then a spitwad would rocket across the room. Even the quiet students were simply uninterested.

"Finally, Monica opened the session up to questions. A girl asked, 'Why in the world would someone want to build a wall in the middle of a city?' She clearly had no understanding why this had happened or what historical forces were at work, even after Monica had told her story.

"As we walked out of the classroom, I tried to explain to Monica that not all young Americans were like this. She looked at me, and once again I saw that same sad, pensive face I remembered from a street corner in East Berlin. She said, 'John, please don't explain anymore. I've been in America for three weeks now, and I've learned that this is a great and wonderful country. But because you have never lost your freedom, because you have never been conquered, because you have never had all your possessions taken from you, you are now willing to surrender your freedom, independence, and autonomy by inches. You simply don't notice it, but, one inch at a time, it slips away.' She continued, 'Those students in there -- I feel sorry for them. No matter what they do when they grow up, many of them will always be acting like children.'"

Update (2/8/2013): Chris Rock furthers this meme (Coincidentally, link via Rand Simberg):

I am just here to support the President of the United States. President of the United States is our boss, but he is also... you know, the President and the First Lady are kinda like the Mom and the Dad of the country. And when your Dad says something you listen, and when you don't it will usually bite you on the ass later on. So, I’m here to support the President.

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Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Political Observation Du Jour

Karl Rove is a political capon. His 2012 record:

Rove, through his two political outfits, American Crossroads and Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, backed unsuccessful Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney with $127 million on more than 82,000 television spots, according to Kantar Media’s CMAG, an ad tracker based in New York.

Down the ballot, 10 of the 12 Senate candidates and four of the nine House candidates the Rove groups supported also lost their races.


The Haymarket Square Riot Revisited

NRO has an interesting article about Bowling Green professor Timothy Messer-Kruse's recent study into the incident. The traditional story goes like this:

[A] gathering of anarchists near Haymarket Square turned into a fatal bombing and riot. Although police never arrested the bomb-thrower, they went on to tyrannize radical groups throughout the city, in a crackdown that is often called America’s first Red Scare. Eight men were convicted of aiding and abetting murder. Four died at the end of a hangman’s noose. Today, history books portray them as the innocent victims of a sham trial: They are labor-movement martyrs who sought modest reforms in the face of ruthless robber-baron capitalism.

What catches my eye is that prominent historians somehow overlooked one of the most crucial original sources (emphasis added):

[Messer-Kruse's] first step was to consult the conventional scholarship - works published by labor historians Henry David in 1936 and Paul Avrich in 1984. “I thought it would be easy to learn what happened,” he says. Yet neither account satisfied him. Then the Internet came to the rescue: Messer-Kruse discovered that the Library of Congress and the Chicago Historical Society had just digitized a large collection of material on Haymarket, including a transcript of the trial. He slogged through thousands of pages, consulting other primary documents to gain a sharper picture of what lay buried in the historical record. Along the way, he realized that earlier researchers had not consulted this transcript. Instead, they had relied on an abstract of the trial prepared by defense lawyers, drawing their conclusions from a flamboyantly prejudiced account of the bombing and its aftermath. “The best source had been hiding in plain sight,” says Messer-Kruse.

Read the whole thing.

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Monday, February 04, 2013

Uh Oh

ABC headline: Chicago murder rate far worse than during Al Capone 'gangland' days.

(Link via Instapundit)

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Baltimore Ravens Win Super Bowl XLVII

Final score: 34-31. has highlights video.


Friday, February 01, 2013

It's Good To Be King

Until they get hold of your emails.

Irving Mayor Beth Van Duyne is calling for an investigation into the actions of City Manager Tommy Gonzalez.

A News 8 investigation Thursday night raised questions about e-mails in which Gonzalez appears to openly solicit sports tickets and other favors from parties doing business with the city.

According to Irving Weekly, Gonzalez makes "$428,000 a year in salary, benefits and incentives."

Update That Irving Weekly article dates back to June 26, 2009 - two three and a half years ago. In a January 31, 2013 article, places the estimate at $450,000.

Update Math error corrected.

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