Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Free kibbles

La Nina is coming. Every weather event will be blamed on global warming. It's like we never had weather until global warming happened.

New book describes environmentalism as religion.

UN group calls for carbon tax. Is there any more effective way to stop economies than to tax the energy they need to operate?

CIA says Bin Laden is in Pakistan establishing new training camps.

Democrats new war plan - embarrass Bush. Maybe they could come up with a plan to win instead.

US to talk with Iraq, Iran, and Syria and others.

US to talk with North Korea about normalizing relations. This seems like the wrong direction. North Korea was on the verge of total collapse, and we pulled them back from the brink.

Army patients at Walter Reed hospital told not to speak to the press.

Search engines are an expression of free speech.

Chinese can remote control pigeons in flight.

Christopher Hitchens asks what happened to Britain's conservatives.

Florida state law would ban term "illegal alien from government documents."

Some people are sorry Cheney survived. That's how twisted the left is.

Mike Adams tries to call a self-proclaimed jihadist teaching at Kent State University.

John Stossel says fear mongering has become a cottage industry.

Thomas Sowell is disappointed in Republican Supreme Court selections.

Walter Williams points out the problems with democracy, which is inconsistent with liberty

Ralph Peters says we still don't understand the enemy in the war on terror.

Dick Morris wonders if John McCain's candidacy is ending right before our eyes. I know that anything can happy, but short of some serious scandal, I think Rudy has it won already - not the just the nomination, but the Presidency.

Austin Bay suggests more reforms to follow Iraq's oil sharing agreement.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Free kibbles

Iraqi cabinet agrees to oil revenue sharing plan. Now it goes to the full parliament for approval. This has been the single greatest obstacle to reconciliation in Iraq, and is great news for everybody in the world but terrorists. More info.

US captures weapons making facility, using Iranian parts, in Iraq.

Taliban unsuccessfully target Vice President Cheney in assassination attempt at US base in Afghanistan. Security concerns have dogged trip.

4 Somalian pirates captured. US warship on the way.

US doubts Iranian claim of launched rocket.

School choice in Oakland outperforms micromanagement in Compton.

Federal government helps illegal aliens send money back to Mexico, cheap.

Ron Paul campaigns in New Hampshire.

Democrats fail to implement campaign promises.

Honeybees are vanishing nationwide.

Chinese stock market fall pulls down US stocks

Ayaan Hirsi Ali should be a role model for Muslim immigrants.

Tomb could belong to Jesus, wife, and son. Or not.

Reason wants to know who you won't vote for.

Girl Scouts do not cause obesity.

British government threatens to take child from parents because he is way too fat.

Al Gore is an energy hog.

George Will describes Congress' bill to remove private balloting for unionization. Since unions are declining because of competition, they want government protection.

Rudy Giuliani says Republicans must remake themselves as the party of freedom. Good luck! Note to Rudy: the 2nd Amendment is not about hunting. He doesn't mention eliminating entitlements, government interference in health care, or the Department of Education. He doesn't mention holding spending flat or adopting the FairTax. This is just typical Republican big-government relativism compared to Democrats.

NASA's New Horizon's spacecraft will flyby Jupiter on it's way to Pluto.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Free kibbles

Congressional Budget office reports debt spiraling out of control. How many times do we have to hear it before we'll make a politician promise to end these destructive entitlements?

Columbian Presidential scandal imperils US ties. The war on drugs is worse than futile, it empowers drug kingpins, terrorists and gangs all over the world and in the US. Prohibition is far worse than the drug problem, and we have to stop it. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

Britain to send 1,400 more troops to Afghanistan.

Libby trial on verge of mistrial - juror tainted by news coverage. Another blogger, conservative this time, on the Libby trial.

Saudi terrorists kill Frenchmen.

Indian rape victim ostracized for reporting rape

Bush's approval rating among Republicans is 76%. That's just crazy.

Israel to hold nationwide nuclear attack drill. Duck and cover.

Backlash from Hillary's attempted censoring of Bill's transgressions.

Quigo Technologies gives Google and Yahoo some much needed ad competition.

Chinese government paints mountain green.

Idiotic warning labels that cost consumers billions.

Catholics boycott cell phone porn; Terrorism erupts in virtual world.

Radley Balko says we have too many laws. Way too many.

Cheney is putting the screws to President Musharraf of Pakistan to destroy those al Qaeda bases. Good.

Joe Lieberman implores Congress to support the troops.

Democrats don't have enough votes to repeal the Iraq war resolution.

This liberal is proud of defeating America in Vietnam, after we'd won no less, and enabling the murder of millions. He wants to do it again in Iraq.

Ralph Peters thinks we need more emphasis on human intelligence and less on boondoggle spending programs

How China uses money policy to undermine the US. We need to balance the budget and adopt the FairTax to fight this new Cold War of Terror.
Absent prompt action from Washington, the US will lose this undeclared trade war without firing a shot.
China is not Japan, and counting on China to stumble is no policy at all.

The left continues to believe it's own lies. After all the revelations we've had about Iraq's nuclear program - even the left's darling himself, Joe Wilson, found evidence Saddam was trying to buy uranium, and ties to al Qaeda, the left refuses to acknowledge them. Fitzgerald has been exposed as an out of control prosecutor on a witchhunt involving old adversaries. And pulling out of Iraq will indeed validate al Qaeda's strategy.

Israel raids west bank city.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Free kibbles

Ahmadinejad compares Iran's nuclear program to runaway train. That comparison implies a big explosion at the end.

Iran launches payload into space with its own rocket.

Tougher sanctions on Iran being discussed.

Suicide bombing in Anbar province. Moderate Sunnis are fighting against Sunni insurgents aligned with al Qaeda, and the insurgents are attacking their own in response. As bad as this sounds, it's good news because it's a sign the Sunni insurgents are loosing support.

Scientist calls Gore's film science fiction and explodes all his conclusions.

Mexicans fake outrage because US fence is supposedly 10 meters into Mexican territory. They're just trying to make political hay by continuing to send illegal aliens to America to take money from our economy.

Pirates hijack UN chartered ship off coast of Somalia.

Up to 5 top Pentagon officers will resign if Bush orders attack on Iran. This is supposed to be big news, but it doesn't seem like much to me.

Europeans consider more web laws

Blacks turning to Islam after 9/11.

Dutch Muslim minister's loyalty questioned.

Bill is an albatross around Hillary's neck - like she needs one after all the corruption she's been implicated in. Republicans would be smart just to let the left eat their own like they always do.

Rat infested KFC/Taco Bell passed inspection.

The complexities of foriegn policy. The US is supporting anti-government groups in Iran. Of course, we did the same in Afghanistan, and they turned into al Qaeda. There are no perfect solutions.

Newt explains just how bad the agreement we made with North Korea was.

Sarah Sewall says that Bush's surge doesn't provide Gen. Patreaus what he needs to win in Iraq. It's still too few troops, the other US agencies haven't come close to providing the resources they've promised, and the Iraqi government isn't capable.

Democrats calls to double the number of special forces are a pipe dream, unless standards are lowered. But then they wouldn't be special, would they?

Column blasts Blair, says Basra deteriorated because Blair deferred to Bush.

Mark Steyn asks where the American can-do attitude is after 9/11? It was killed by the nanny state. Government takes care of us. We don't take care of ourselves anymore.

It's ironic to hear Bill Gates, the man who has quashed more innovation in the last 15 years than anybody, lecturing America on innovation.

George Will reviews "Letters from Iwo Jima."

Molecular memory chip the size of a blood cell

The psychology of forming political opinions.
I am going to suggest that democratic politics is a very poor information-processing mechanism. The great mass of people form their political beliefs with little regard for facts or logic. However, the elites also have a strategy for avoiding truth. Elites form their political beliefs dogmatically, using their cleverness to organize facts to fit preconceived prejudices. The masses' strategy for avoiding truth is to make a low investment in understanding; the elites' strategy is to make a large investment in selectively choosing which facts and arguments to emphasize or ignore.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

10 positions to guarantee a Presidential victory in 2008

Americans yearn for freedom. Many have been seduced by the absurd promises of big-government politicians claiming they'll solve everybody's problems. But even most of those people will respond to a message of empowerment through limited government that will create opportunities for them to generate wealth. These positions will also animate the untapped libertarian mainstream of America that long ago opted out of big-government politics because nobody represented them. Even those who are unsuccessful because of their own decisions will be able to blame the government.

To that end, Presidential candidates in 2008 should adopt the following positions and rhetoric based on the idea of helping Americans take back power, freedom, and responsibility from the government. It's a "power to the people" message with substance. It capitalizes on the rhetoric both sides use so hypocritically, but it implements libertarian principles that will really work to empower people to generate wealth and security and appeal to almost everybody, the same principles that made America great before big government took over.

A number of these positions are bold and many would be considered unpopular. But America is sick of having mealy-mouthed, feel-good politicians lie to them. Americans will sacrifice to make this a better country for their kids if they're well informed and they trust the leader. And America is looking for a bold leader who will tell it like it is. A savvy candidate will turn the unpleasant news to his advantage and emerge as a bold leader the likes of which we haven't seen since Ronald Reagan.

1. Hold the budget flat for 2 years.
People are so used to growing government that promising to hold spending flat for 4 years would be too scary, and attacks from the left would be hard to overcome. But everybody in America on both sides knows that we'll get along just fine if the budget is held flat for 2 years. Picking 2 years is bold - it's not just 1 year. A candidate should wield this position as a weapon against all opponents, challenging them. Representatives can get on board with the 2 year promise as well. The candidate can always repeat for another 2 years after the country sees how successful this is.

2. Adopt the FairTax.
The FairTax will be popular with 90% of Americans. It's a no-brainer. The FairTax will let Americans compete on a level playing field with foreign workers by taxing foreign goods and American made goods exactly the same. The candidate can sell the FairTax to protectionists (or populists as they're being called), because it will bring jobs back to the US. At the same time, the candidate can support free trade. Everybody wants to see drug dealers and tax cheats pay their fair share. Everybody keeps 100% of their paychecks. This issue will galvanize support from both sides.

3. Abolish the Dept. of Education.
Only those in power support the Dept. of Education, once they understand what it does. From the most liberal mother to the most conservative mother, they want their children to get a good education. They also agree to disagree about what a good education is. That means they both want school choice. Getting the federal government out of the education business is the best and fastest way to get school choice implemented all over the country. And it saves money.

4. Get the government out of health care.
The left, and even some of the right have come to think that socialized medicine is the way to go. But that's because nobody has explained the problem in the right terms. The problem is the same as the education problem, and you can't explain it by saying government drives up the price. What people really want is health care choice, they just haven't ever heard of that because nobody has made that argument. All the talk about government involvement driving up prices of education and health care is useless. Tell them they can have the choice between different kinds of cheap, effective health care from multiple vendors.

5. Win the Iraq war.
With the press telling us that most Americans want us out of Iraq, this may seem counterintuitive, but Americans do not want to be defeated. A candidate with a message of victory will overcome the anti-war sentiment. And the reasons we started the war no longer matter. A candidate can make those cases, just not Bush, but no other candidate has tried. A candidate that comes out firmly for victory and the positive results of victory without focusing on the past can galvanize the country.

Make the case that it'll be far more expensive in blood and treasure in the long run to lose in Iraq than it will be to win. The loss of credibility alone, even without the subsequent violence that will explode all over the planet, is enough. What credibility we have left will be gone for years or decades if we choose to lose. All the credibility we have lost by floundering in Iraq can be regained, and more, by winning. Push this positive message.

6. Stop illegal immigration.
Poll after poll reports that Americans want an end to illegal immigration. A candidate who will dry up the jobs and benefits for gate crashers, is smart enough to tell the difference between a gate crasher and an immigrant who came here legally and tried to work within the system only to be screwed, without being a hypocrite like the johnny-come-lately Republican hawks in 2006 who were defeated, will get all that support. A candidate can be a real immigration hawk and moderate at the same time because of these two classes of illegal immigrants.

7. Phase out entitlements completely.
Americans will understand the hard truth of entitlements if somebody just tells them. FDR knew that Social Security was unsustainable when he created it, and every politician since knew the same. Unfortunately we have to pay the price for the folly of our political ancestors, and better now than later. Entitlements will drive us into bankruptcy otherwise.

And as part of the message of people taking back power, freedom, and responsibility from the government, entitlements need to disappear, because Americans get that power and wealth, not the government. They don't want another Federal program, like ownership accounts, to replace it. The young will have to pay benefits to cover commitments to the elderly, and they'll receive reduced or no benefits themselves. This is inevitable thanks to titanic spenders FDR, LBJ, GWB and Republicans and Democrats, but all Americans will be better off when entitlements are completely gone. Americans will understand this from an honest candidate.

8. Significantly reduce government interference in the free market.
A smart candidate will explain that government interference in the market suppresses wages and drives up CEO salaries. The so-called wage gap that is such a hot issue is caused by big government interference, and making that point will win over a lot of workers from both sides. This is a winning issue for a smart, small government candidate.

9. Appoint judges who acknowledge that the Constitution means what it says.
Judges who acknowledge the Constitution means what it says are our second best guarantee of limited government. The best guarantee is the people themselves, of course.

10. These positions will unite America, and that is our best tool for foreign policy, and it will empower Americans, which is our best weapon in the War on Terror. Those two factors, along with success in Iraq, will put China and Russia and their terror war proxies, Iran, North Korea, Syria and Venezuela on notice that the US is not to be messed with. A revitalized US, unburdened by titanic government, will again be a model to Europe, which might wake up from its self-destructive torpor.

Free kibbles

Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki praises success of Baghdad crackdown.

Iranian's crack down on rebels.

Israel seeking permission to overfly Iraq for strike on Iran. Israel denies.

US rejects international ban on cluster bombs. Why would we surrender such effective weapons?

Uganda using UN gun control mandate to massacre citizens.

Fuel efficient rocket designed.

Is theoretical physics running out of gas?

New X-ray scanner deployed in Phoenix airport.

William Krystol thinks it was a bad week for Hillary. That makes it a good week for everybody else.

NASA's contingency plans if an astronaut loses control in space.

Girl Scout cookies have no more transfats.

Pretty good refutation of global warming hysterics.

Austin Bay reports on the real story behind the Baghdad security plan. Everybody is quick to say that the security plan won't work unless accompanied by political reconciliation. What nobody says is that political reconciliation won't work without a security plan. The militias had no incentive to join the political process when they could murder and undermine the government with impunity. Now that troops are breaking down their doors, killing and capturing men and weapons, the militias are suddenly more interested in reconciliation.

No news from Iraq is good news.

Ron Paul's candidacy will be a test for conservatism
- he's the only candidate in the race who supports limited government.

9 excellent reasons why we can't trust a Democrats with national security.

Clintons try to keep Bill's impeachment from debate. The funniest line is:
"In the end, voters will decide what's off-limits, but I can't imagine that the public will reward the politics of personal destruction," senior Clinton adviser Howard Wolfson said Friday, when asked whether the impeachment is fair game for Clinton's opponents. Earlier in the week, Wolfson dismissed references to President Bill Clinton's conduct as "under the belt."
Hillary's camp wants us to believe that Bill's perjury, witness tampering, obstruction of justice, and resulting impeachment aren't debatable. Mentioning his crimes is supposedly the "politics of personal destruction" - it was the Clintons doing all the personal destruction! Remember the slander of Ken Starr and everybody in his office? Remember all the lies and corruption that were exposed week after week, month after month, and year after year? The Clinton's are unconscionable, lying hypocrites. It shows a serious sickness in our country that we elected Bill, even with a plurality vote, and worse yet, we're considering electing Hillary. How sick are we?

Leap is Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Free kibbles

Congratulations to the American senior citizens who killed one mugger and fought off several others in Costa Rica. This kind of fighting spirit, taking responsibility for yourselves, is what made America great, not being sheep under government control, and we need to get it back.

Consumer revolt spurred via the internet. It's a lot easier to join forces here than in person, but mob mentality can happen here too.

Democrats' latest plan to defeat the US - gut authorization for war. Their commitment to our defeat, and their public embracing of plans to defeat us is amazing. It shows how sick America has become when we allow these kinds of attacks on our war efforts to grow. White House is against Congressional micromanagement of the war.

Chalabi gets role as Iraqi citizen advocate for the surge.

US arrests son of prominent Shiite politician for ties to Iran. Maliki forces release.

Cheney concerned about China. He ought to be more than concerned, and the administration is just making China richer and more powerful while they continue to use terrorist proxies to attack us.

Oil creeps up over $61. More money in the terrorists pockets. It's unconscionable that the government hasn't done something to restrict demand. As tight as supply and demand are on oil, a small change in demand could produce a large change in price.

Pakistan test fired a nuclear capable ballistic missile.

Bank of America defends illegal immigrant credit card, and they should. As long as it's American policy that illegal immigrants can come here and live and work, companies would be foolish not to address that market. The policy needs to be fixed in Washington, not by corporate America. This should highlight that terrorists are illegal immigrants, and can get credit cards as well. Our failure to control illegal immigration is going to kill a lot of Americans.

Are effective lie detectors ready for market?

The Supreme Court's decision overturning judgment against Philip Morris.

Court supports ban on dancing in bars. I don't see anything unconstitutional about this ban. Stupid? Yes. Unconstitutional? No. This ban should be repealed, just like all the others.

Boortz misses the point about Joe Lieberman switching parties. If Lieberman switches parties, Democrats would get the filibuster instead of Republicans. That loss isn't worth one more vote. Further, Republicans don't need another RINO - they have far too many already. And Lieberman can do more for the war effort by supporting it as a Democrat, where he stands out, than a Republican.

Vilsack already out of race for Democratic nomination.

Archaeologists claim Jesus' tomb found. His son's too. Far from undermining Christianity, even if true, Christians will never let it interfere with their beliefs.

Britain hired psychics to hunt for Osama bin Laden. Who says we aren't doing enough to find him?

Chimpanzees make spears and hunt with them.

Circumcision dramatically reduces risk of HIV infection.

First beaver spotted in New York City in 200 years. Insert beaver joke here.

Anybody who has ever worked in a highly collaborative environment knows that meetings make you dumber. They are huge productivity killers that also stifle innovation.

Pat Buchanan dumps on the Europeans and NATO

Charles Krauthammer compares the slow bleed approach of House Democrats to the lawyer run war approach of the Senate, and dislikes both

Mark Steyn examines America's allies and finds only steadfast Australia with Britain fading.

Thomas Sowell says unions artifically inflate the price of labor, just like the minimum wage, and cost jobs.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Give Poll Workers a Raise

Give Poll Workers a Raise

by Mark Luedtke

Ohio is having trouble getting enough poll workers, so naturally Democrat Jennifer Brunner wants to solve that problem by use of force. Secretary of State Brunner didn't try to start discussion on possible solutions. She isn't suggesting several proposals for debate. She jumped directly to using the force of the state to draft Ohioans as poll workers, and she wants the legislature to make her proposal law.

The problem is Ohio currently has only about 47,000 precinct poll workers. That's just 4.4 workers per precinct and law requires 4 poll workers at every precinct. The national average is 6.9. Clearly we have a shortage, and since the average age of our workers is 72, we can expect some no shows. We need to get more poll workers to restore confidence in Ohio's election process.

Brunner's proposed solution is to draft registered voters to work the polls. She would demand they attend training Friday and Monday before the election, and work shifts during the election, augmenting the current poll work force. Brunner hasn't worked out the details of her plan, but it will have to include some penalty for non-compliance with the draft. This plan evokes visions of enforcers marching the conscripts to the precincts.

If implemented, Ohio would be the only state in the union to force its citizens to work the polls, and not just because of that terrible perception of draft enforcers. Forcing citizens to work against their will is unconstitutional. A level of competence and confidence is required of poll workers that can't be met by forcing uninterested and unwilling citizens to do that work, and relying on conscripts would cast more doubt on Ohio's election process, not less. Citizens fearing this draft would lead to lower voter registration as well - a problem we don't need to make worse.

Brunner compares her idea to jury duty, but the contrasts far outweigh any similarities. Jurors do not have to be trained. The requirement for jury duty is based on the right of the accused to a jury of his peers – there is no such analog for voting. To insure a fair trail, jurors should not be made up exclusively of people who want to be on a jury. Poll workers should want to work the polls, and return year after year.

There are any number of far better solutions to this problem. Some suggest county employees could work the polls. County business is generally slow on election day, and the ready made pool of workers could be trained at any time. One problem with using county workers, though, is that they work for people on the ballot, and that creates at least a perception of impropriety.

The Secretary of State could work with universities and high-schools to recruit younger workers. No doubt civics and government teachers and political science professors would like to see their students get involved in the election process. A little extra credit and free pizza could go a long way toward recruiting students to work the polls, and have the added advantage of getting young people involved.

Ohio's sky-rocketing tax rates are already chasing jobs out of state, and Brunner's plan to forcibly take business' employees for three days without compensation can only aggravate that problem. We would be better served by engaging with employers, forming public/private partnerships that serve both business and government, and provide workers for the polls.

More radical ideas are being used in Colorado and Oregon. Larimer County, CO. replaced its traditional precinct model and instead created several large voting centers in the county. Residents can vote at any center they choose. Oregon makes it easier for everybody to vote by mail. Both these methods require far fewer poll workers, but the vote by mail option opens up voters to potential coercion that polls are designed to prevent.

All of these social engineering alternatives are superior to Brunner's plan, but I have a simpler idea: pay poll workers more to attract more and younger citizens. A better paid workforce is a better motivated workforce, and that would go a long way toward restoring confidence in Ohio's election process. Right now workers are paid about $95 a day. The Secretary of State should recruit poll workers and provide whatever compensation that supplies enough quality workers to meet the state's demand. Advertise. Market. Recruit. Free market forces create optimum solutions.

Brunner's plan is a power grab. To implement her plan, she would need new resources for her office to identify the draftees, organize them, and hunt down the draft dodgers and bring them to justice. These new resources mean more money and more power for her office. This does not translate to better elections – just the opposite. More bureaucracy means worse execution.

This issue is another example of Americans' misguided dependence on big government. We see it with education, health care, and now elections. Government always makes the problems worse, but our subsequent solutions involve ever more government. It's a self-destructive spiral. We shouldn't socially engineer solutions to these problems. The free market is smarter than any centralized planning. Let it work.

Free kibbles

Milton Friedman was the most prominent libertarian of the 20th century.

Senate finalizing comprehensive immigration reform bill that is much more lax than even last year's.

Russia arming Syria with advanced anti-tank missiles.

Mixed reaction in Iraq about British pullout. Our weakness has led to the violence.
“People hoped the British would control the city with a strong hand, but in reality all they cared about was protecting themselves.”
Prince Harry will have SAS guards in Iraq. How is that going to work?

Iran to ban men on island for female tourists.

Egyptian blogger jailed for insulting Islam. Who would have thought that Islam didn't support support free speech?

Cheney says Democrat's surrender position validates al Qaeda's strategy. He's 100% correct, and Democrats hate it. Nancy Pelosi calls President Bush to complain about Cheney's comments.

Republican fundraising surpasses Democrats.

25 Boston police officials make over $200,000. Holy cow! So much for underpaid police officers. And these are the guys who started the Boston panic over lite-brites.

School sued for banning Jesus costume at Halloween. Bizarre as a Jesus costume on Halloween is, it shouldn't obviously shouldn't be banned.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Free kibbles

British to withdraw 1,600 troops from Iraq. Denmark to withdraw.

Another US helicopter was shot down in Baghdad, and terrorists are mixing chlorine gas with their bombs.

Kuwaiti news agency is reporting that coalition troops raided Muqtada al Sadr's offices in Baghdad.

Iran continues uranium enrichment despite UN deadline.

Italian Prime Minister loses government because of support of US.

Terry Nichols claims McVeigh had help from a high-level FBI official.

Libby case turned over to jury. Blogger think Fitzgerald's witchhunt won't end with Libby. I don't think the public will stand for Fitzgerald abusing his power further.

Calcutta has banned the use of rickshaws. Why? Obviously rickshaws provided a useful service.

Congress to protect Philip Morris from competition.

No reason to get mad at Bank of America for making money off illegal immigrants. Maximizing profit for it's owners is what's it's supposed to do. The illegal immigration problem needs to be solved by Washington, not companies.

Flow of illegal immigrants slowing. Texas schools recruit in Mexico for bilingual teachers. Nancy Pelosi backs tuition breaks for illegal immigrants.

John Stossel points out how government involvement in health care hurts everybody.

Rich Lowry writes that John Murtha's plan to micromanage the Iraq war is unconstitutional, and that it may well set up a constitutional crisis which everybody will lose.

Walter E. Williams points out the nonsense ideas of government and conventional wisdom.

Thomas Sowell explains how prices work to effectively ration goods.

Tension rises between US and Russia over anti-missile missiles.

US sits idly by while al Qaeda training camps spring up in Pakistan.

It's the new strategy in Iraq, not the surge in troops

The system of natural liberty.

How government drives up the price of health care.

Book on China's New Cold war of Terror that America can't be bothered to even acknowledge

In a book that is as certain to be as controversial as it is meticulously researched, a former special assistant to the president for National Security Affairs and senior official of the Central Intelligence Agency shows that the U.S. could be headed toward a nuclear face-off with communist China within four years. And it definitively reveals how China is steadily pursuing a stealthy, systematic strategy to attain geopolitical and economic dominance first in Asia and Eurasia, then possibly globally, within the next twenty. Using recently declassified documents, statements by Russian and Chinese leaders largely overlooked in the Western media, and groundbreaking analysis and investigative work, Menges explains China's plan thoroughly, exposing:

  • China's methods of economic control.
  • China's secret alliance with Russia and other anti-America nations, including North Korea.
  • China's growing military and nuclear power-over 90 ICBMs, many of them aimed at U.S. cities.
  • How China and Russia have been responsible for weaponizing terrorists bent on harming the U.S.
  • Damage caused by China's trade tactics (since 1990, we've lost 8 million jobs thanks to China trade surpluses)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Free kibbles

Livestock supposedly worse for global warming than transportation. I guess when the great buffalo herds that spread from horizon to horizon were running around the plains, global warming was even worse. This just shows how silly this man-made global warming propaganda is.

Scientists supposedly unite to push Bush on climate change. But every time some organization does this, it turns out that many scientists in the organization disagree. This is political pressure masquerading as science.

Australia bans incandescent light bulb. This is a stupid idea. The free market will take care of this on it's own. Criminalizing it is ridiculous. The US will follow soon. The energy hog commercials I see locally are missing the point. They should advertise that those bulbs save money, not just energy.

Security Council deadline for Iran to halt uranium enrichment has passed. The US will undoubtedly push for tougher sanctions, and it will be hard for China and Russia, who voted for this deadline, to block them.

3 American women captured and released in Palestine. Abbas and Hamas are trying to get US backing for his unity government, and apparently responded quickly.

Why do prisoners in Guantanamo have rights again? Nice of the courts to recognize them as prisoner's of war. Prisoners of war have never had rights to a court. The Geneva Convention was supposed to confer more rights on combatants who wear uniforms, but never the right to any trial - just good treatment. It negotiated no rights for combatants with no uniform. But liberals have twisted that to try and give those enemy combatants out of uniform rights equivalent to US citizens. This is part of liberals' larger agenda to project that Americans and America are nothing special. They're wrong.

Putin warns of new Cold War over anti-missile missile deployment. Poor Russia. It's been working with China in a new Cold War of Terror against America for the last few years, but now it's upset because we put missiles in the eastern Europe to defend Europe from missile attack. Russia won't stand for allowing Europe to have missile defense.

Blair argues for biometric national ID card. Fortunately US states are revolting against this here.

The NYT version of what we learned about the White House and Cheney at the Libby trial.

Group pushing for ordinance that would allow legal immigrants to vote in NYC elections. If they haven't sworn citizenship to America, they haven't earned the right to vote. It make no sense to allow people who are sworn citizens of other countries to be able to affect political policies in America. I don't understand why Americans would want to dilute the power of their vote with votes from citizens of other countries.

Italy forces 13 yo girl to have abortion. Wow.

Mardi Gras crowds up in in New Orleans. Homicide rate has skyrocketed.

GOP donor charged with supporting terrorists.

Edwards calls Israel greatest threat to peace.

Hillary objects to confederate flag. That won't win her any votes in the South.

Thomas Sowell writes about politics and San Francisco golf courses.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Free kibbles

Putin acknowledges the new Cold War, but he tries to blame the US. Funny. Russia threatens harsh response - demands Poland and Czech Republic must not be able to defend themselves.

Al Qaeda training camps springing up in the safe haven tribal Pakistan. Why don't we destroy them as soon as we find them?

Indian train bomb may bring Pakistan and India closer

It won't take environmental groups to stop the border fence. Congress will handle it on their own.

Hillary will use right wing conspiracy - a real one this time - to her advantage. Dems want to see Bill appointed to Hillary's Senate seat if she wins. I think states would be wise to require representatives resign their current job if they announce they are running for another. Our representatives like to tell us that they work so hard, but apparently quite of few of them can do their Washington jobs while campaigning full-time for another. We shouldn't let that happen.

Columnist claims Bush has opened door to authoritarianism. Give me a break. Democrats have been pushing their authoritarian agenda since the New Deal. They're just mad that conservatives have been able to do the same with their different authoritarian agenda. The left loves authoritarianism when the left is in power, and the right claims to want limited government. And the right loves authoritarianism when the right is in power, but then the left claims to want limited government. They're both a bunch of authoritarian hypocrites.

Can you imagine how corrupt and incompetent a UN program to stop and asteroid strike would be? I'll put my money on NASA, even though they've been a bloated, inefficient bureaucracy. We can't let the UN have any influence on NASA, or NASA will degenerate into complete ineffectiveness.

Christopher Hitchens says violence between Islamic sects is spreading.

Romanian priest jailed for death during exorcism.

Couple who caught cop speeding past their home charged with stalking in response.

Australian jumps on the authoritarian bandwagon - they'll ban incandescent light bulbs. This is the wrong approach. The government, as a consumer, should lead the way by buying only compact fluorescents. Other than that, let the free market do the work.

Apple battled with cell phone services create iPhone. Traditionally the services held all the cards.

Sexual representations hurt young girls. It's funny they never study how studly heroes affects the psyche of boys. That's the sexism in our culture.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Conservatives need to put their money where their mouth is - literally

In response to this essay claiming conservatives are logical and liberals are emotional:

It must be nice to sit on the sidelines and proclaim conservatism is superior to liberalism without having to back it up in practice. The attacks on liberals are justified. They did abandon Vietnam, and millions were slaughtered as a result. Their welfare state creates dependency and poverty. It's easy to attack failed liberal policies, because they all depend on bigger government, and they all fail.

But what about the polices of conservatives' candidates? Conservatives gave us George Bush and his Republican congress who have exploded the size of government so fast that LBJ is green with envy. They've given us an expensive war of choice with no end in sight. They've given us the no money left behind education boondoggle. They've given us the $1 trillion prescription drug medicare benefit.

How exactly are conservatives better than liberals again? It takes an audacious, or deranged, mind to claim that conservatives have contempt for the federal government in light of the actions of their representatives in office. And if conservatives have such contempt for the UN, why didn't their representatives do something about it after 6 years in control of government? Nice lecture by a hypocrite.

Many will call the Bush administration an aberration, but that's intellectually dishonest. Bush campaigned on his No money Left Behind boondoggle, and conservatives supported him. Bush campaigned on the prescription drug benefit, and conservatives supported him. They can't disavow him now. They put him in office know full well what is policies were.

Others will say that conservatives have learned their lesson. Has Rudy Giuliani vowed to shrink government? John McCain or Mitt Romney? Hell no. Conservatives talk about smaller government, but they put their money behind big government candidates. It's easy to talk about small government and freeing people, but conservatives don't support that.

We keep hearing that conservatives support smaller government. We keep hearing that America is a conservative nation. Yet our government is growing at disastrous rates, and only the Libertarian candidate runs on reducing the size of government. Both those statements cannot be true.

All evidence says this is because conservatives do not support smaller government, despite their lip service to it. All they support is slightly less big government than liberals. Conservatives like their government handouts, called faith based initiatives, too. All this conservative talk of small government is bull. I'll believe conservatives talk when they nominate a candidate who promises to:

1. hold government spending flat for at least 2 years
2. adopt the FairTax and free the nation from the disasterous income tax
3. abolish the department of education so federalism can find great solutions for education
4. get the government completely out of health care so the free market can make it cheap
5. secure our borders
6. win the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and bring our troops home
7. appoint only justices who acknowledge that the Constitution means what it says
8. roll back government interference in the free market
9. get the government out of the entitlement business completely

Until conservatives are willing to put their money and their votes behind all these issues, they should just quit talking about smaller government and freedom, and quit pretending to be better than liberals,or be exposed as hypocrites like Mr. Hawkins.

Michael Tanner at Cato has noticed the same thing and written a book about it.

According to a review:

Today's conservatives are different. They don't aspire to smaller government. In fact, they're happy to increase the size of government as long as it's in the service of promoting such ``traditional'' values as marriage, family, religion, work and ``appropriate'' sexual behavior.

``Big-government conservatives share a common arrogance with contemporary liberalism,'' Tanner writes. ``They are convinced that they know what is best for every American and because they know best they should guide the rest of us in the proper direction.''

Free kibbles

Insurgents have changed strategy to down US helicopters. Effectively too.

Democrats get creative in attempts to defeat America.

Republicans are lining up to expose Hillary, the most divisive political figure in my lifetime. I think that Democrats have already anointed Hillary. They know all about her crimes, manipulations, lies, her real positions, and how spiteful she is, but they'll run her anyway, and she'll lose. Right-wing attacks will probably backfire. Better to let Democrats attack her.

Robot cars on road by 2030. There is no way this will take 23 years. 2020 at the latest.

Mark Steyn says that if Democrats and surrender Republicans have their way, it won't be Bush's war or Republican's war, but America's defeat

Democrats risk taking ownership of defeat in Iraq
. As I've been posting, Democrats have foolishly painted themselves into a corner. If they manipulate funding or try to micromanage the war, they will own it as they owned our defeat in Vietnam. If we succeed, they will have earned another generation or more of time in the political wilderness of weak on security. Democrats' only hope for political success is for a US defeat in Iraq in which they played no part. But even that exposes that Democrats are weak on defense.

Steve Chapman thinks Bush's North Korea deal may have stopped NK from selling it's nukes. He's the first I've heard mention that besides me.

Dick Morris says Hillary's position on Iraq exposes her stubbornness as a weakness. But Hillary is between Iraq and a hard place. If she flip-flops, she'll be beat over the head for that too, so she's forced to stand by her vote. She betting, and rightly so, that she'll still be anointed so she's playing for the national election, not the primaries. Her real mistake is not being honest, and saying she thought Saddam was a threat and removing him was the right idea. Instead, she's trying to cut the baby in half. Fortunately, even if she literally cut a baby in half, Democrats would still anoint her as their candidate.

I feel dumb because I didn't know that the KKK was originally allied with Democrats, but if you think about it, Republicans freed the slaves and tried to reconstruct the south, so it only makes sense. It also explains Robert Byrd's membership in the KKK, and Democrats' embracing of him.

Ted Galen Carpenter says the US should try to make a grand bargain with Iran.

Cato says that free trade, not legislation, is the best way to put an end to sweatshops in third world counties.

How sailors used Maine potatoes to survive a battle in WWII.

Government forcing students to get immunizations against parents' will.

Socialism at work in Venezuela.

Plans to ban the letter X in Saudi Arabia.

Relative temperature graph for the last 10,000 years. Climate history. Maybe all this was changed by man-made greenhouse gases.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Free kibbles

Democrats plan to limit funds and equipment for troops, all the while saying they would never do such a thing.

House likely to pass resolution against Bush's new direction in Iraq. Apparently they prefer the status quo.

Maliki informs Bush of accomplishments of offensive. Bush would be wise to trumpet them far and wide.

Insurgents laying low.

Even though Abbas gets concessions from Hamas and Fatah takes over cabinet positions, Sec. Rice says unity government complicates situation. It looks to me like Abbas won big time, but I others think Abbas and Fatah have been compromised.

Putin promotes hawk as likely successor. Dictators who step down in favor of successors. I doubt that will become tradition.

CIA officers to stand trial in Italy.

Weapons rolling into Guinea despite martial law.

Mandatory carbon limits seem inevitable. Models predict incorrect temperatures in Antarctica.

Reason plays 20 questions with presidential candidates

Judge restricts use of video surveillance in New York.

Slate's list of top 60 charitable contributions.

Over 27% of FireFox patches come from volunteers.

Illinois to get rid of indian mascot because the NCAA doesn't like it.

Hillary buys endorsement from Black activist preacher for $10,000/month.

Georgia legislator claims evolution is Jewish myth.

Ellison, who called the police on Tancredo for smoking a cigar, apologized because it was blown out of proportion. That's no apology at all. He didn't apologize for calling the police. No wonder it got blown out of proportion.

FBI surrenders to political correctness regarding terrorism.

Charles Krauthammer almost grasps the New Cold War of Terror, but he hasn't quite got it yet.

Bush may be surging. The Democrats are on the verge of either overreaching, or providing financing for Bush's new direction in Iraq. Either way, Bush wins. The new strategy has already produced good results. Bush is poised to capitalize.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Free kibbles

India may join with China and Russia in their new Cold War of Terror against the west. Because we have yet to acknowledge this new Cold War, we're completely unequipped to deal with it. If India joins China and Russia, winning this Cold War before it becomes a shooting war will be much harder, but since we're not on a Cold War footing, we unprepared to bring India to our side.

We can't win the War on Terror, with Iran and North Korea acting with the military, financial, and diplomatic support of China and Russia to drain our resources, without acknowledging and addressing this Cold War, and if India joins first, winning will be 1 billion more people harder.

Our peaceful ally Russia threatens to pull out of missile treaty because the US can intercept missiles. Putin doesn't want anybody to survive his attacks. How come our government can't tell this is a new Cold War?

Eastonia to remove Soviet statue against Kremlin wishes. Now Putin is getting involved in other countries statues, trying to preserve the Soviets.

Daimler considers dumping Chrysler because the penalty of the US income tax keeps it from competing on a level playing field with overseas companies. We need to adopt the FairTax to allow American workers and American products to compete fairly. Companies moving to Netherlands because of tax policy. Adopting the FairTax would bring those companies and their jobs to the US.

Congress is butting further into the health care business, making it ever more expensive.

Madrid bombers go on trial.

Leaked Iraq war plan estimated 5,000 US troops in Iraq at end of 2006. So much for Democrats' bull that Bush had no plan. As I've said all along, the plan just sucked.

Christian divisions play a role in Lebanon's strife, but to claim that their differences are more significant than the Shia / Sunni problems is intellectually dishonest.

Hamas cabinet resigns. New cabinet will balance Hamas and Fatah.

Did Bush change direction to get a North Korea deal to free him to attack Iran?

Passengers trapped on JetBlue planes for 10 hours. The free market is responding with a petition for a passengers' bill of rights. Watch government interfere on the side of the airlines against the people.

GOP Presidential candidate reintroduces video game ratings bill in Senate. They'll keep introducing it year after year until it passes. That's how it works.

Bizarre ending to the Libby trial.

Tancredo won't give up his cigars. Despite Ellison's call to the police, smoking is legal in private offices in Congress.

New book out on libertarians. It's funny that up until the beginning of the 20th century, our government was dominated and restricted by libertarian ideals, but in the span of our grandfathers' lifetime, libertarians have become radicals.

New Foxnews news spoof to take on Obama.

National greeting card site lampoons Democrats. Yuk!

Thomas Sowell mentions several, prominent global warming skeptics.

Putin's double-talk exposes his anti-American agenda. That's why he's teamed up with China and they're wooing India to join their new Cold War of Terror.

Was Cleopatra ugly?

Red light cameras work.

Victor Davis Hanson says we should crack Ahmadinejad with many points of pressure.

George Will profiles a Republican long-shot.

Republicans should reinvigorate federalism. No kidding.

I like the way Ralph Peters thinks. He thinks we should expose Muqtada al Sadr as a coward for fleeing Iraq, and we should do the same to all the terrorist leaders.
Even more important, there's a pattern emerging that goes far beyond Iraq:

* Mookie ran to Iran.

* Osama's so scared he won't let himself be photographed.

* Hassan Nasrullah of Hezbollah ducked for cover as soon as Israel started shooting.

* The key leaders of Hamas hide out in Damascus, not Gaza or the West Bank.

Anybody see a pattern here?

Not only does the effectiveness of leaders-in-hiding plummet, but it makes an obvious case - which we've failed to exploit - that the demagogues who order in the suicide bombers and the AK-armed "martyrs" are personally in no rush to enter paradise.

Yes, leaders in any organization have different responsibilities than their line doggies. But real leaders lead from the front sufficiently often to inspire the troops and stay grounded in reality.

What Mookie's hasty hejira to Hamadan tells us is that our fanatical enemies, Sunni and Shia, face a leadership crisis. The dons of terror are afraid.

If we can't take advantage of that, shame on us.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Free kibbles

Iraq gets serious about security and winning the war. Finally an MSM article reporting al Sadr has fled Iraq for Iran in fear of the security crackdown. This is how you can tell it's working. In response, Pelosi pledges new direction - working more closely with insurgents to defeat the US just as we're turning the tide toward victory. The Democrats will do anything to stop the US from winning. They will never recover if we win.

Meeting to resolve supposed climate deadlock. Once again, the Democrats, and now some Republicans, have it exactly wrong. As more and more excellent science emerges linking climate change to solar activity, politicians are uniting to attack our economy. We will need the most wealth and technology possible to mitigate damage from climate change, but government will cripple us anyway. Global warming hearing canceled because of ice storm. You have to love the irony. Greenland glaciers melting at variable rate - not accelerating as hysterics claim. Canada votes to make itself less capable to deal with climate change.

Cornelus de Jager on solar driven climate change. Ilya Usoskin on solar driven climate change. IPCC propaganda for policy makers - released 4 months before the actual science is going to be released.

Slate calls Bush's North Korea deal "Clintonesque." That shows just how bad it is.

EU report accuses some members of working with CIA on renditions. European nations and the EU are in a fight for power. It's one thing to make an economic block, and quite another to surrender sovereignty to a higher authority.

Because we haven't adopted the FairTax that allows American made goods and therefore American workers to compete fairly in the world market, Chrysler to cut 13,000 jobs.

California votes to change Presidential primary from June to February. Other states considering the same. This will have the effect of hurting turning and increasing burnout in the campaign.

Backlash against President Bush still apparent in polls for 2008 Presidential candidates.

Dick Morris thinks Newt fills a conservative need and should declare to run.

Army issuing more waivers for criminal backgrounds for recruits.

NFL rejected Superbowl ad recruiting for border patrol calling it "controversial."

Freshman Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison, famous for taking his oath of office on the Koran, called the cops on Republican Congressman on Tom Tancredo because Tancredo was smoking a cigar in his own office. Now we know that Ellison has no respect for the rights of anybody else. Yet Americans elected him to office. Hopefully they'll fix that in 2008.

Mexican drug gangs taunting each other on YouTube.

Illinois bill hopes to bar school and library computers from accessing social networking sites.

Ralph Peters describes the many flavors and ethnicities involved in modern Islam.

Deadly bombs in Iraq made by Iranian special forces unit - Quds.

The bionic woman is back! Nananananananana

John Stossel points out how government has screwed up health care, and how more government will screw it up far more
But forbidding California to pursue dumb ideas is a mistake. As I've pointed out the last two weeks, the American founders showed their genius by dividing power between the states and central government.

Let the states experiment! Universal coverage is a feel-good idea that many people want Washington to impose. Better to have models of failure in individual states so we all don't have to suffer! We need living reminders of collectivism's faults. Without the Soviet Union, I fear that Americans will forget its horrors.

Walter Williams exposes the terrible effects of big-government socialized medicine.
There's a cure for our health care problems. That cure is not to demand more government but less government. I challenge anyone to identify a problem with health care in America that is not caused or aggravated by federal, state and local governments. And, I challenge anyone to show me people dying on the streets because they don't have health insurance.
Thomas Sowell tells us the rest of the story behind the $10,000 offer for dissenting opinions on global warming. It turns out think tanks always pay contributors for their work on any subject. It's compensation, not a bribe.

A nice Australian points out the irrationality of intellectual dishonesty of the hate America crowd

CATO considers the Iraq war a lost cause. America defeated the Japanese and helped defeat the Germans, then we occupied and rebuilt both countries into thriving, self-governing, economically free nations while fighting a war in Korea, implementing the Marshal Plan, and fighting the Cold War. To think America cannot turn Iraq into a thriving, self-governing, economically powerful nation right now is just silly. The only thing stopping us is our own will.

The US still does a terrible job of mobilizing all it's agencies to win wars.

Rich Lowry explains how Republicans got funding the military backwards

Ohio governor says Ohio will not accept any Iraqi refuges. What a jerk.