Monday, June 30, 2008

Free kibbles

Decades of bad government policy and this decade's mismanagement by the Fed (thanks for screwing us then retiring, Greenspan) has put us in a no-win situation. Our economy is dropping and inflation is rising. The best place for investors is commodities, and that means a continuing falling dollar and rising oil and food prices.

Bush administration expands covert operations in Iran.

Pakistani forces go on offensive against Taliban near Afghanistan border. When Musharraf was in power, he kept the pressure on the Taliban. But since we forced him out of power, this the first time the Pakistani government took action. They probably know the pressure is building on Bush to send US forces into that region. Cato suggests we directly train Pakistani forces for a clear and hold mission similar to what has succeeded so well in Iraq. It's funny that they acknowledge the success in Iraq here, but they still call for us to pull out and leave Iraq to Iran and al Qaeda.

Responding to Iran's threat to shut down oil shipping through the Straits of Hormuz, the US replies they won't let that happen. Iran knows that. It also knows it it couldn't survive if it couldn't ship oil and import gasoline. They were just sabre rattling.

Unfazed Mugabe sworn in as world urges Africa to act. The weakness of the United Nations and the much vaunted international community is on display.

Iraq continues to make fitful progress on oil deals. It hasn't signed any deals because it's driving a harder bargain. Sounds smart to me given the current oil environment. As soon as these deals are signed, the cost of oil should begin to drop. Smart Republicans will jump on that to show what would happen to prices if we freed up drilling in Amerca.

Did we really need a huge study to tell us that the we didn't have enough troops and other personel in Iraq after we toppled Saddam? Cato explains that we didn't have enough of a debate on the costs and realities of rebuilding Iraq. I'll say. Nobody talked about being there 10 years or more. The discussion of how many troops would be necessary was negligible.

China's pollution has caused an algae bloom in sea where Olympic sailing events are scheduled in 6 weeks.

Reason on the history and counter-productiveness of gun control laws.

Liberals are unhappy that Lieberman said that Iran and al Qaeda would dominate Iraq if Obama is elected. How can they be upset about that? Obama's plan is unconditional withdrawal, leaving Iraq to Iran and al Qaeda. Once again, liberals want it both ways. They want to pull out of Iraq, but nobody's allowed to say that the consequences of that mean surrendering Iraq to Iran and al Qaeda.

Gen. Wesley Clark says only Generals during wartime have commander-in-chief experience. He said getting shot down isn't a qualification for being President. Oops. I guess that's an attempt to take McCain's military experience out of the campaign since he was only a captain and not during wartime. That's a silly argument. By all accounts McCain showed heroic and selfless leadership while a POW, and that kind of character is most certainly a qualification for being president. Obama's campaign is working hard to convince the American people that character does not matter.

Isn't it funny how Obama wouldn't wear a flag lapel pin in the Democrat primary, but he does in the general election? Typical snake-oil salesman who'll do or say anything he thinks works to his advantage.

The federal housing Obama champions is unlivable in his home district in Chicago. This is a peek at the consequences of Obama's vision for America. Obama's cronies got fat and happy off the subsidies while his constituents suffered in squalor.

This article twists McCain's words. He doesn't say he doesn't know the price of gas, he says he doesn't remember the last time he pumped it and it doesn't matter that he doesn't remember the last time he pumped it. But look for Obama to talk about pumping gas in his next campaign stop. It'll be all over the press.

Cato explains that gun sales in Washington D.C. are in limbo after the Heller decision because nobody knows what is legal to sell. They're all legal. The ban was overturned. Sell the poor people of D.C. who have been disarmed and therefore the victims of runaway crime some guns so they can defend themselves ASAP!

Prince Charles converts his 38 year old Aston Martin to run on surplus English wine. Al Gore hasn't done that.

Buzz Aldrin says we must invest in NASA or fall behind in the space race. Our problem isn't how much we invest in NASA. I'm willing to bet we spend far more on NASA than the Soviets or the Chinese do on their space programs. The problem is NASA is a bloated bureaucracy and it can't produce as much per dollar as the Russians or Chinese. It's a horrible indictment of what we've allowed American government to degenerate to that Czarist Russia and the Communist Chinese are more efficient than us.

Israel predicts earthquake. This should be interesting.

Technology giants unite to buy, license, and resell patents so they can't be used against them.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Free kibbles

US to maintain 15 combat brigades in Iraq as of early next year. I bet that number drops. Bush wants to be able to say Republicans cut troop levels before November.

I doubt Iran has the armament to shut down shipping in the Persian Gulf even if it really wanted to. It would be financial suicide for them. They would have no fuel and no money within days. Sure, the government is suicidal, but the people of Iran aren't. We would have air superiority immediately if we chose. I don't know about the capability of their missile arsenal and whether or not we could protect ships from them.

Terrorists in Pakistan didn't just execute the 2 people accuse of being US spies, they beheaded them to cheers from the crowd. That sounds like a good enough reason to carpet bomb that hell hole to me.

This is an interesting case. The Texas Supreme Court overturned a jury decision finding a church responsible for a girl's psychological problems because of an exorcism. It seems to me anybody performing an exorcism should be legally responsible for the consequences, but this girl obviously had psychological problems before the exorcism, or there would never have been an exorcism, so I don't see how she can blame her problems on the exorcism. I don't see how the First Amendment would protect church members from liability. It protects freedom of religion, not freedom from consequences of actions.

Reason reports that the gun control fight isn't over. Does the decision apply to the states as well as D.C? The good news for Republicans is that gun control is now a hot button issue in the presidential campaign. I hope Congress impeaches at least one of the justices who voted against the Constitution before November, but I don't think those wet dishrags have the backbone for it.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Free kibbles

So secure in their power and safety, Pakistan Taliban publicly execute 2 men for helping the US in a recent missile strike.

Oil is over $142 a barrel.

Looks like the ATF is trying to grab headlines by raiding Blackwater armory. At least nobody got killed this time.

In a remarkable benefit for trade and human development, the north pole may be clear of ice this year allowing shipping between the Atlantic and the Pacific for some period of time. More ground will be available for farming. This will make for cheaper goods and services, lifting people out poverty all around the world. Naturally, liberals are alarmed. They shouldn't worry. That gain in prosperity won't last. We're heading into a new cold period full of crop failures and starvation for a decade or 2. That should make liberals happy.

This article claims the ice will gone from the north pole "for the first time in human history". That's just a bald-faced lie. Global temperatures were higher 800 years ago than today, and much higher than that 3,000 years ago and probably many more times during this interglacial period. I heard yesterday that the planet was so warm in 4,000 BC that the coast of Antarctica was free of ice, which it hasn't been since. All of that is in human history. These alarmists have to resort to outright lies to promote their agenda.

Zimbabwe voters stay home instead of voting in sham election. Mugabe's forces force people to go to the polls.

North Korea demolishes cooling tower at decrepit nuclear plant as a symbol that it hasn't given up anything of value but gained quite a bit from gaming these nuclear negotiations. This is another step in a well orchestrated sham.

The Supreme Court struck down another aspect of McCain-Feingold - the millionaires amendment that restricted people who used their own money in a campaign. Striking down this First Amendment abomination is taking so long we'll dead before it's finished.

Political correctness run amok: city cancels presentation of "Ragtime" because of racial language.

The Reason staff comments on the decision by the Supreme Court reaffirming the individual right to keep and bear arms.

Democrats overwhelmingly join Republicans in support for winning the Iraq war. Better late than never. I have yet to see hundreds of Democrats with Barack Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and Hillary Clinton in the lead walk up to microphones and apologize to the troops, Gen. Petraeus, and the American people for outright lying about our prospects and progress in Iraq and for declaring the war lost while our troops were still in the process of fighting and winning it.

Obama's strategy to reach out to evangelicals won't win them over in mass, but it may win over enough for him to win the election. Or it might. It seems to me a presidential candidate should reach out to every constituency, find the common ground that exists, and try to win over some votes. I think that's how you build consensus. Ignoring constituencies just leads to more polarization.

Obama is pretending to be a tough guy to win the general election. It's a sham.

How dumb is John McCain for making this, albiet standard when asked a lose-lose question, wife-beating joke?

The liberal activist and serially fraudulent voter registration group ACORN and Obama partner receives 40% of its funding from tax dollars.

I don't think Europeans want a fight over a hostile take-over of Anheuser-Busch.

Pheonix lander finds water and mineral nutrients capable of sustaining life in Martian soil.

Canadian scientists announce satellite to hunt for near earth asteroids.

British veteran who performed citizen arrest on vandals stoning his house was arrested and charged with kidnapping the vandal. Charges were eventually dropped, but the message is clear - vandals can do whatever they want and anybody who tries to stop them will be punished.

The Browning .50 caliber M2 machine gun may be replaced after nearly a century of service.

US stops accepting plans for solar power plants to address environmental concerns. This shows the real agenda of the Marxists masquerading as environmentalists who dominate liberal ideology. It's all about stopping US development and harming our economy, not environmentalism. I want to see the tables turned on the eco-nuts. Every time they hold up a new power plant, I want to see a class actions suit filed against every eco-group halting progress on behalf of the citizens who have to pay higher energy prices for the duration of the delay. It's about time mainstream Americans used the same tactics against these Marxists-cum-eco-nuts they use against us.

The rest of the Battlestar Galactica episodes won't be shown until next year. What? No wonder TV is going down the tubes. They can't even show a full season of episodes in a year. This is absolutely stupid. Why are they just now filming them? TV executives better wake up. Their stupid scheduling is going to ruin TV.

Lawrence Kudlow rips Bernanke and the Fed for holding rates steady instead of raising them and supporting the dollar at their last meeting. I was just happy Bernanke didn't lower them again in his ongoing assault on the dollar.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Free kibbles

Supreme Court strikes down Washington D.C. gun ban. Details. It's absurd that this decision was only 5-4. The implication is stunning. That means 4 members of the Supreme Court think that a complete ban on handguns doesn't violate the 2nd Amendment. That means those 4 justices have 0 respect for the highest law of the land, and probably use it for toilet paper in their private bathrooms. We should start the impeachment process on those 4 justices now. I'm emailing my representatives and calling for immediate impeachment of the 4.

McCain backs decision. Obama straddles issue. Obama straddles every issue, and McCain loves to equivocate too.

Thanks to the funding and corruption generated by our war on drugs, Mexican drug cartels hire Mexican soldiers to come to the US and perform home invasions and assassinations and take on our border patrol and police. If we spend more money on this war, it just flows to the drug cartels creating more violence and corruption. Drugs are not our problem. The war on drugs is our problem.

Economic growth still weak at 1% in Q1. Dow lowest so far this year.

30 people killed in separate bomb attacks in Iraq.

At least in part because of US meddling in Pakistani internal affairs, the situation in Pakistan keeps degrading. Terrorists burned down a ski lodge and many girls schools.

North Korea produces incomplete document detailing its nuclear program and hands it over to China, not the US. I guess they want China to vet it before we see it otherwise China might be implicated for all the technology and money it provided NK to develop nuclear weapons. Bush reduces sanctions. This is going to come back and bite us in the future. Cato welcomes the developments despite highlighting the deficiencies in the report. I think that's naive. North Korea is just playing us for fools to get some trade and use the wealth to develop more weapons. So far we have gained nothing of value, and given up plenty. North Korea has given up nothing of value, but gained plenty. As soon as we reach the point where North Korea must give something of value, like a working nuclear reactor or a nuclear weapons, they'll back out and laugh at us for the fools we are.

Our surveillance society is one step closer to the All-seeing Eye that will dominate our lives as engineers link artificial intelligence with surveillance cameras. Think about how different children born today will be because they will grow up knowing that somebody is watching their every movement.

Because UK government banned anonymous sperm donations, sperm banks are running empty. Government ruins everything it touches.

Spain extends rights to great apes. You have to be kidding me. I guess since the Spanish are committing suicide with a fertility rate of 1.37, culture-shock is driving them to find alternatives to humans. I don't think the great apes will keep their culture alive.

If harnessing volcano power is cost-effective, go for it. But don't subsidize it if it's not.

I had no idea Obama was proposing a "0 to 5" plan to indoctrinate children in liberal ideals from birth, pushing for universal pre-K. I guess by Obama's standards, the government monopoly on education has been so successful for ages 5 to 18, we should expand it all the way back to birth. I can see the government agent looking through the window, tapping his foot, waiting for the birth so he can go in and grab the baby from the parents for the good of society.

I wonder how many jobs, mostly low income jobs, it will cost Americans when Obama implements his plan to apply Social Security taxes to households making over $250,000 a year. Obama's plan will end plenty of gardeners, maids, nurses, nannies, and far more jobs supported by those jobs. That's what Democrats call helping the poor and middle class.

Cato explains that US sugar policy guarantees minimum prices and strict import restrictions, making sugar expensive and promoting the wasteful use of land.

IT students are outsourcing their coursework to India and Romania. This is what the liberal attack on our values has reduced us to. Hard work doesn't mean anything. They want good grades, and that's all that counts because consequences don't mean anything, just motives. Just pay your tax, sit back and let somebody else take care of your problems for you.

Looser rules for domain names?

It's nice to know that even Bill Gates understands that Microsoft sucks. This memo is a strangely satisfying read.

Scientists theorize that large impact might have created the disparity between Mars' northern and southern hemisphere.

Schwarzenegger says feeding our oil addiction isn't a solution to our energy problems. Give me a break. That's like saying I'm addicted to water. Without oil, we'd still be in the steam engine age. Oil is the wonderful fuel that enabled us to develop from that age to the modern age. I have a proposal. How about we pass a law banning any person who talks about oil in a bad way or talks about our oil addiction from using any product that is derived from oil? That would cut demand sharply, bringing down prices for the rest of us.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Free kibbles

Despite oil prices, energy demand will grow 50% in the next 20 years. Call me crazy, but I think Americans should get a piece of that pie and enjoy lower prices too by drilling for oil off the coasts and in ANWR, extracting oil from shale, and building coal power plants. Government would prefer we send our money to overseas countries and make them fabulously wealthy and ourselves destitute. Good for Boehner, saying Democrats are “worshiping at the altar of radical environmentalism” when they block drilling. Democrats respond by pushing bill to force oil companies to drill on existing leases. It's always force with Democrats, never freedom. Instead of forcing, how about Democrats cut the red tape for developing existing leases at the same time the lift the ban on drilling off the coasts, ANWR, and extracting oil shale.

20 people dead in 3 days, 500 so far this year, in Ciudad Jaurez across from El Paso. That's what the war on drugs is doing to Mexico. The death and lives ruined resulting from the war on drugs dwarfs anything legal drugs themselves could do.

Fed leaves interest rates unchanged. In today's environment, that seems like a huge victory for consumers. Fed to finally fight inflation. That's what it's always supposed to be doing. Cato says the Fed put itself in a box, creating our problems of falling house prices, credit uncertainty, high oil prices, and inflation.

Citizens mob welfare office for food stamps. That's because government is crushing us. They are squezing the economy so badly with taxes, mandates, restrictions, and subsidies, more and more people are getting trapped in poverty. This part of our inexorable decline into destitution because of socialist policies. Free Americans would never go hungry except by choice.

Supreme Court strikes down Louisiana's death penalty for child rape. Calling it "cruel and unusual punishment" doesn't make any sense, but I can understand the argument that the punishment doesn't fit the crime.

Democrat Senators Dodd and Feingold attempt filibuster of telecom immunity bill. They want to make sure no company ever helps the government provide security in the future. This is not just stupid, it's self-destructive.

Bush to ask Congress to remove North Korea from terrorist list. This is the same North Korea that was building nuclear facilities in Syria. That sounds real smart.

Department of Defense nominates first woman as a 4 star general despite having never served in combat because rules don't allow it.

Climate change will certainly affect US security. That's why we need honest science, analysis and debate on climate change. But Al Gore and his bunch of frauds and the alarmist press won't allow that and are hurting our ability to deal with the consequences of climate change.

Blah, blah, blah Israel, blah rockets, blah Hamas, blah Gaza. I wish I had a nickel for every time this scenario played out. This is exactly what Einstein was talking about when he said repeating the same actions expecting a different result is insane. We need a new policy - the disarmament of Hamas and Hezbollah. That's the first step on the path to Middle East peace, and without it, any so-called peace process is doomed.

You have to love this presentation of this Plame non-affair:
Former presidential aide Karl Rove has been widely suspected of having played a major role in the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame. These suspicions have never been fully dispelled, even when former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage acknowledged he was the person who gave Plame’s name to columnist Robert Novak, who then revealed it in print.
Despite not having any evidence to support the suspicions and having irrefutable evidence that Armitage was the leaker not Rove, the suspicions remain. How funny. I'm suspicious that the giant spaghetti god outed Plame, and those suspicions haven't been fully dispelled either, despite Armitages admission, so we should keep hammering the giant spaghetti god in the press too.

Reason discussed the intersection of morality and self-interest in economics.

Pelosi calls for Fairness Doctrine. Freedom means nothing to these people, so why not?

Gallop has McCain and Obama tied. LATimes/Bloomberg has Obama up 12. Polls are a joke. Every time I see John McCain on TV, he's mumbling under breath like a feeble old man. When he gives a speech, he sings it in a weak voice like a feeble old man. He exudes lack of confidence. Obama speaks with a loud, clear voice, and he exudes confidence. I think if McCain spoke up with a strong voice and showed some passion, he would crush Obama. But you can hardly hear the man except when he's being so phony, he's singing.

Comprehensive immigration reform incumbant loses primary in Utah. So much for the belief that voters don't care about border security first.

After 27 years, MTV to accept political ads. Gosh, I wonder what could have changed their liberal minds. I wonder who will run lots of ads on MTV.

California paper outsources editing to India.

Democrats' green, politically correct convention should be a circus.

Madison Wisconsin considers ban on fast-food drive throughs to combat global warming. Government is using this fraud to grab unprecedented power. That's what it's all about.

Cato points to 2 respected standard tests that show American students' performance has dropped since No Child Left Behind.

Funny FairTax cartoon.

$90 million police station in Britain has a prayer room, I mean a "reflection room" with a compass for finding Mecca. Coming soon to a city near you. Can you imagine if somebody put a cross up in a US police station?

Austin Bay highlights new program by State Dept. to help people in Afghanistan and Iraq get access to government expertise.

Thomas Sowell has a great essay describing the folly of forcing the US to imitate the policies of countries that are worse off than us. In this case, he means Europe, and he uses the minimum wage and pharmaceutical policies as examples.

John Stossel applauds the role of speculators in business, explaining they work as a type of shock absorber for otherwise abrupt changes in the economy. I think speculators play another important role, and we're seeing that role played out right now in the oil markets. The speculators are like the canary in the coal mine, telling us that we are facing serious energy problems in the near future because the demand for oil is growing significantly faster than the supply. They tell us that through prices. We've had people talk about the energy crisis for over 30 years, but nobody did anything about it. But now that speculators are betting the future price of oil will rise, which puts upward pressure on the current price, we finally seeing something start to happen to resolve the problem.Speculators also signaled the problem with the dollar when they dumped it for commodities. Because of that sudden devalution, the Fed was shocked into remembering its actual charter to control inflation.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Free kibbles

The head of the IAEA says Iran could make a nuclear weapon in 6 months to a year. Wow. John Bolton predicts Israel will strike Iran's nuclear facilities between our election and inaugoration. I agree that a strike would be welcomed in the Middle East, while publicly condemned. Arabs don't want Persians to have a nuclear weapon, and Sunnis don't want Shiites to have a nuclear weapon.

Terrorists in Gaza fired rockets into Israel despite the cease-fire agreement. What a surprise. The terrorists didn't keep their word. Who would have every guessed that might happen? This cease-fire agreement just means Hamas can rearm, regroup and attack Israelis with impunity.

Socialized medicine strikes again, this time in Japan. Japan will impose fines on businesses with fat employees over the age of 40. That's some pretty low waist size limits too, especially for the men. Under socialized medicine, the government has unlimited power over our bodies and behavior. It's an abomination.

Senate prepares to pass $300 billion housing bailout bill. Do you think Congress realizes we're already in debt, and that so-called bailout is just adding more debt that the same people will have to pay later?

Leading global warming fraud James Hansen, the man responsible for the discredited hockey stick graph and for manipulating NASA's climate data to make it appear that recent years appear hotter than they are, recognizes his chance to use the global warming fraud to implement world-wide Marxism is slipping away as people learn the facts about natural climate variations. Why NASA hasn't fired this liar is beyond me. Kofi Annan carries the torch, claiming rich nations should pay for climate change, not poor nations - a thinly veiled translation of Marx's "from each according to his means to each according to his needs."

Reason remembers George Carlin, but the FCC censorship battle continues.

Anne Applebaum wonders why we expect presidents to be nice guys. I don't.

Cato scoffs at Congress' attempt to blame speculators for the price of oil. Speculators are betting the price goes up because of rising demand and flat supply, and Congress is a big reason the supply is flat and the demand is rising so fast.

Proving that an election doesn't lead to good self-government, Pakistan is leaderless and the power and territory controlled by terrorists is increasing after the election western powers pushed so hard for to limit Musharraf's power. As I wrote at the time, we should have kept our noses out of Pakistan's internal politics and focused on our strategic objectives. Now we have a significantly worse situation in Pakistan.

Barack Obama's entitlements for women.

The new Democrat talking point is that oil companies aren't drilling for oil on land they already lease from the government, so the government shouldn't lift the ban on drilling in other places. This WSJ article explains that not every piece of dirt in the US has oil under it (did Democrats really think Americans were that dumb to think so?), plus it takes time and money to explore leased lands.

I doubt anybody is surprised to learn that 2 studies prove that ethanol subsidies have had significant effect on raising food prices, but have had a negligible effect on fuel prices. That's what always happens when government sticks its nose in the marketplace - no problems are solved, but new problems are created.

1 Democrat is backing off her call to nationalize oil refineries. But just 1.

Fred Thompson enumerates the privileges granted to Guantanamo terrorists in their tribunals that the Supreme Court called "inadequate" in its decision to grant detainees habeas corpus. No prisoner of war in history has ever been granted such extensive legal privileges, but they weren't enough for this Court, which obviously considers them common criminals instead of enemy combatants. The Court would have been more honest if it had just declared the War on Terror unconstitutional.

If cars had become more efficient at the same rate as computers, Britain would need only 1 liter of fuel per year, and our oil reserves would last for the duration of the solar system. I could take a cheap shot about government interference in the auto industry as compared to the semi-conductor industry, and while that does have an effect, it wouldn't be fair because of the differences in technology.

Here's another fine example of the effectiveness of capitalism versus socialism. The Times puts up searchable archives from 1785 to 1985. How long do you think it will take before all government documents are searchable online?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Free kibbles

House hearings call for oversight and regulation of oil futures markets. Obama proposes even harsher regulations. Government created this speculation problem by banning drilling and restricting nuclear, coal, and natural gas power plants. Now they want to screw up our economy even more. We are racing down the socialist path of destruction at breakneck speed. Every day Congress perverts our economy more, then when the markets react to take advantage of Congress' actions, Congress intervenes and further perverts the markets. This will end 1 of 2 ways, by the US becoming a poverty-stricken, totalitarian state (or states) or we extract government from our markets, reestablish freedom as the guiding principle of America, and we all thrive.

Guantanamo detainee wins habeas corpus hearing. US court removes "enemy combatant" status and orders military to release or try captive. This is the new face of war. Every enemy combatant gets a slot in the justice system. From now on, soldiers on the battlefield don't just have to fight for their lives and to accomplish their mission, they have to collect evidence for the subsequent hearings as well. One of the immediate impacts of this ruling is American troops will want to execute enemy combatants for their future protection. Some will do it. Some will refuse to reenlist. This is going to hurt troop moral and harm the reputation of our military. We are the laughing stock of the world - the superpower which cares more about coddling the enemy than defeating it. This is going to cost American lives, extend wars, weaken our military, society, and confidence in government. Until a month ago, about the only thing our government did well was defeat our enemies. Not it can't even do that. All thanks to the Supreme Court's habeas corpus ruling.

Iraq gives oil contracts to multi-national oil companies. I hope US firms got some.

Bill Gates to step down as head of Microsoft. Thank goodness. Maybe Microsoft will start producing quality products and quit using monopoly power to slow the development of software for consumers.

UK surveillance society out of control. The headline for this article said 1 camera for every 14 subjects, but I don't see that in the article. Look at what these cameras are used for. And it's just the start. These cameras will be used for profiling soon enough, then everybody will be a suspect.

Reason on the futility of forcing restaurants to post calorie counts.

Commentator Krystol says Bush may bomb Iran if a Democrats victory appears likely. This makes some sense to me. If Bush had confidence the next commander-in-chief would stop Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, he wouldn't need to bomb them, but if Obama was the likely victor, we would be assured that Iran would develop the bomb.

The best indication of the success of the surge in Iraq is that the media coverage has been "massively scaled back" as the mainstream media try to protect their Messiah, Obama.

Obama closely linked to ethanol special interests. These attacks on candidates and special interests are just silly. If Obama supports ethanol and wants to increase subsidies for domestic production, naturally he'll surround himself with other supporters. The special interest influence isn't the problem. The support for the wasteful, socialist policy is.

If government has to interfere in the private sector, a prize for new technology like McCain's proposal of $300 million for a new technology battery is least bad way of doing it.

George Carlin died.

Cato calls for an arms embargo on Zimbabwe, but I think the situation calls for tougher sanctions than just that.

Cato calls for Congress to cut off funds for and rescind Real ID act.

Congress reconsiders constitutionality of incandescent light bulb ban. Why doesn't it reconsider the constitutionality of all their other bans at the same time?

Feds are suing company because it lowers credit limits on its credit cards for people exercising high-risk behavior. The goal is wipe out the credit scoring system that evaluates risk. Once again government is forcing the credit industry to ignore credit risks, then government officials will lambaste those lenders for not managing risk when we have another credit crisis. Why do we continue to allow our government to harm us so badly?

Buffalo organization wants to help low income earners suck more benefits from taxpayers. They think this is a good idea. How about getting a better than minimum wage job instead? If government wasn't taking so much money from taxpayers by force, there would be more and higher paying jobs to compete for. It's neither compassionate, moral, constitutional nor good policy to take money by force from taxpayers to give to others.

Liberals rip Tim Russert for being too easy on the Bush administration. Unbelievable.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Kentucky versis Ohio festivals

My girlfriend, JG and I went to the Goetta festival in Covington today, and the contrast between Dayton festivals and that festival couldn't have been sharper. We enjoy Dayton's festivals, but you can't take 3 steps without tripping over a cop in Dayton. You have to have your ID checked, wear a wrist band, and buy drink tickets to enjoy a beer at a Dayton Festival.

In Covington, the first beer stand we stumbled upon sold us a beer. For money. Without checking our IDs (I need a face lift). We wandered the open streets with open beer for hours and saw only 1 cop. On the advice of others, we wandered up and down main street outside the barricades with beers for half the time we were there. We're still not sure that was legal, but not 1 cop came by while we enjoyed the neighborhood. By the late afternoon, when we were leaving, we had seen 3 total. In Dayton, had we done the same thing, we would have been up against the wall 10 times surrounded by aggressive cops in the same time. It was unbelievable.

It was like the festivals when I grew up. No government oppression. People had a great time, were well behaved, and they didn't congregate like cattle in the streets. They actually moved and flowed in a way that facilitated movement. The prices of the crafts were unusually low for us. It was like a blast from the past, but with all the benefits of the present.

Ohio's police state mentality is so damaging to the state, the contrast was impressive. I'd forgotten what it was like to be that free. It's breathtaking. Our only concern was whether a cop would try to ruin our lives on the way home by arresting us for DUI.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Free kibbles

Louisiana passes school voucher bill for New Orleans, allowing poor children to attend private schools.

Zimbabwe President Mugabe's rein of terror has been successful as opposition party withdraws from run-off election. We live in a world of terrorists because terrorism works, especially when backed by the state. Every freedom-loving individual in the world should be angry at Mugabe and the lack of action by the African and international community. Where are the UN resolutions condemning Mugabe and where are the draconian sanctions he has earned? Where is the international fleet of navy ships blockading his ports? Talk is cheap, and the international community didn't even talk the talk. The so-called international community and the UN are jokes.

UN warns that bombing Iran's nuclear facilities would turn the Middle East into a metaphorical ball of fire. They don't say that allowing Iran to develop a nuclear bomb would turn cities into literal balls of fire. I disagree with the premise anyway. Nobody in the Middle East, except some radical Iranians, wants the mad Mullahs to obtain a nuclear weapon.

Headline says House votes to expand president's wiretap powers. This is not accurate. The commander-in-chief already had the power to wiretap anybody he suspected of being a terrorist or terrorist sympathizer because we're in the middle of a war. Neither Congress nor the Courts have any power to limit or expand the commander-in-chief's war powers. Congress can end the war, cut off funding for the war, or impeach the president, but that's the limit to their checks on his war powers. What the House voted to do was to provide immunity to telecoms who actually perform the wiretaps on behalf of the government.

Iranians told to conserve energy or face blackouts. Iran is sitting on more oil than it could ever need to power the country, but they don't have energy. And their oil producing facilities are crumbling around them. The Iranian regime is collapsing. The only thing that might save it is obtaining a nuclear bomb and using that to blackmail the international community to provide it support. That's why bombing the nuclear facilities isn't nearly as bad an option as liberals make it out to be. If we destroyed those facilities, setting the program back 5 years or so, the regime wouldn't be able to survive to develop the weapon in the future.

Opposition candidate urged to withdrawal from Zimbabwe election because most believe the election has been so thoroughly rigged he can't win.

McCain holds private meeting, pandering to Hispanics, telling them he's really still for comprehensive immigration reform, not border security as he's been claiming on the campaign trail. This is what passes for "straight talk" by government aristocrats. I never believed he changed his position, and anybody who did, and voted for him because of it, is a fool.

And Obama attended Louis Farrakhan's Million Man March. Obama says Republicans will use race to stoke fear. Right. This radical black activist who hangs out with people who look up to Louis Farrakhan accuses Republicans of using race to stoke fear. The double standard that's being institutionalized here is scary. It's not only OK for a black man to look up to black supremacists, to borrow a term, but it's a badge of honor, and anybody who criticizes this behavior is revealed as a racist. But if a white man ever sets foot in the same building as a white supremacist, he's ostracized to the fringes of society forever. This double-standard is scary.

More Bush derangement syndrome: Lou Dobbs calls for impeaching Bush because of salmonella outbreak. Yeah. It's Bush's fault.

Declaration of war on terror - war resolution, authorization of military force, right after 9/11.

Florida governor Christ endorses McCain's plan to allow states (except Alaska) to determine whether or not to drill for oil off their shores.

Global warming frauds are now advocating high gas taxes since it has proven effective at convincing Americans to change their driving habits. It's all about power and control.

School officials call Children's services on parent because a psychic said the child was being sexually abused.

Cloud formation related to natural climate cycles may be responsible for global warming. Duh.

In order to balance the city budget, Cincinnati's city manager, previously from Dayton, proposed implementing red-light cameras to generate $1,000,000 in revenue. Uniformed tax collectors. Fortunately Mayor Mallory promises a veto.

George Will thinks habeas corpus should be extended to Guantanamo detainees, but he doesn't discuss either the consequences or why the constitution hasn't said that for the last 219 years, but suddenly does. It's ironic that this clear rejection of the separation of powers specified in the Constitution is being rationalized on basis of enforcing separation of powers.

John Stossel refutes many of the bogus assumptions of the war on drugs, with links, and makes a passionate case for legalizing all drugs. We need this guy to be on the TV much more often.

Michael Barone points out that facts like progress in Iraq, acquittal of Haditha Marines, and gas prices are undermining Democrat positions.

Boortz rips commentator who wants socialist policies, i.e. taxpayer money, in return for drilling for oil off the Florida coast. I can see where this guy is coming from - socialism rewards greedy bastards like this and is the source of all the income disparity liberals rail against, unlike in free markets where everybody has to compete. How about Florida just rakes in the dough from the oil they sell and we call it even?

What were the Soviets doing with an Apollo capsule?

Cool map of the Firefox 3 download countries on download day. Over half came from the US. Most interesting to me was that 0 came from North Korea. Some African country had 8, which was the next lowest I saw. But even Cuba had over 3,000. Iran had half a million. North Korea had 0. Talk about a prison country.

This compressed air injecting knife is bizarre. Who thought of that, and why?

Britain to inject released prisoners with RFID chips.

Bread kills. Funny. Dihydrogen monoxide may not be the deadliest substance man consumes any more.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Farm Subsidies Are Corporate Welfare

Farm Subsidies Are Corporate Welfare

by Mark Luedtke

The argument for farm subsidies is they help small, family farmers stay in business. That's a silly argument – taxpayers should not subsidize businesses. If a small, family farm can't profit in a free market, the family is better served by the breadwinner entering a business which produces a profit. When that happens, both the family and society benefit. But even if you accept the argument that taxpayers should help out small, family farmers, farm subsidies do just the opposite.

During the 70 year history of farm subsidies, the percentage of America's population on farms has dropped from 25% to 2%. Contrary to what politicians tell us, farm subsidies are designed to benefit rich farmers and drive off small farmers because the more crops a farmer plants, the bigger the check government sends him. That's because farm subsidies are rooted in socialism.

Woodrow Wilson took the first bite of the apple by guaranteeing prices of certain crops after WWI. The result was that farmers switched to planting those crops with a government guaranteed price, created a glut, and the Federal government was stuck with a bunch of worthless crops it had to dump at significantly lower prices. Taxpayers footed the bill for the difference.

Roosevelt's New Deal agricultural interventionism cost more in dollars and human lives. While Americans starved and struggled to import expensive food, FDR's government burned crops, slaughtered livestock, and paid farmers not to grow food. All the while, FDR lied to Americans, telling them that American farmers couldn't produce enough food to feed the people. That's the socialism at the root of farm subsidies.

Today, family farms netting up to $2.5 million after expenses receive fat, government checks. That's Congress' definition of a struggling family farm. The top 5% of subsidy recipients collect over 50% of the subsidies. The top 10% collect 73%. Small farms get next to nothing. Economies of scale give the corporate farmers a big advantage over small farmers, but the subsidies magnify the advantage and drive up the price of farmland by up to 30%. Small farmers can't afford to buy more land to grow more crops to make more money. Instead, corporate farmers often buy up struggling, small farms, turning the owners into tenant farmers or sending them packing.

Socialism, not free markets, make the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. According to the Topeka Capital-Journal, 56 of America's richest citizens receive farm subsidies. Billionaires David Rockefeller Sr., Sam Walton's heirs, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, and Paris Hilton's grandfather have all received subsidy checks. We're subsidizing Paris Hilton's lifestyle. Michael Jordan's sidekick Scottie Pippen and Jane Fonda's ex-husband Ted Turner have fed from the taxpayer trough as well.

It's hard to imagine a bigger corporate welfare give-away than farm subsidies, but Congress did when it passed the new farm bill.

President Bush managed to win a cap on subsidies for the largest farmers - Congress wanted a higher cap than $2.5 million. But taxpayers paid a hefty sum to make that cap palatable to lawmakers. The farm bill is laden with pork, but that's small potatoes. 66% of the $307 billion farm bill, $200 billion, went to what was euphemistically called “domestic nutrition programs”. That's code for welfare. This farm bill is literally a welfare bill.

During this period of record food prices, taxpayers are dishing out $43 billion in subsidies for the production of rice, corn, wheat, soybeans, and other crops that are at record high prices. We're forking over $27 billion to farmers not to farm. And if prices return to their historic norms, the subsidy payments and the cost of the farm bill balloon. Congress has rigged the market so taxpayers will make corporate farmers richer either by paying outrageous food prices or paying outrageous subsidies. We don't even get to pick our poison.

Farm subsidies also depress the world economy. Because we heavily subsidize large, corporate farms, incentivizing them to over-produce and glut the market, produce prices all over the world are depressed, while we pay more than we should for other produce. Poor farmers in developing nations can't get a fair market price for their crops. Then our government sends those same poor farmers welfare checks paid for by taxpayers. While corporate farms bring home the bacon, government penalizes poor farmers here and abroad and punishes taxpayers twice: we spend billions subsidizing corporate farms, and we spend billions in welfare to overseas farmers because they can't make a living thanks to our subsidies.

Anybody who voted for Republicans or Democrats has nothing to complain about. When Newt Gingrich successfully led Republicans against big-government in 1996, Congress scheduled a phase out of farm subsidies by 2003. But Republicans fed Gingrich to the wolves so they could return to their big-government ways, and under George Bush they revived the subsidies in 2002. Bush may have vetoed this farm bill monstrosity before both parties overrode him, but his failure of leadership and Republicans in Congress are as much to blame as the Democrats.

We have nobody to blame but ourselves. We elected these 2 parties. In 5 months, we'll have the opportunity to reelect the same failed parties and get more of the same failed policies, but even worse. Or we can vote 3rd party and reverse the decline of America. To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, neither Republicans nor Democrats are the solution to our problems, both parties are our problem. Free markets are the solution.

Cool Breeze Chills Global Warming Hot Air

Cool Breeze Chills Global Warming Hot Air

by Mark Luedtke

I haven't enjoyed a comfortable spring like this since I was a kid. This is the kind of spring we loved back in the 70s, when climate change alarmists were warning that the world was plunging into a new ice age. Now, despite having no evidence that man-made CO2 is the cause for the warming of the last 30 years, those same alarmists are warning of run-away global warming. They were wrong then, and they're wrong now.

Like prophets and doomsayers of every age, the global warming alarmists can't make nature behave the way they want it to. For all the talk about the dangers and effects of global warming, the warmest years on record is still a tie between 1934 and 1998. Since 1998, global temperatures have fallen. The highest temperatures ever recorded in America were during the '30s. If man dangerously heated the planet for the entire 20th century, how come it's not as hot now as it was in the '30s? The more scientists learn about climate the more they realize they don't know. The more climate change alarmists learn about climate, they more they dissemble to try and stay relevant.

Climate scientists recently deciphered several natural climate cycles that are responsible for the rising global temperatures for the last 3 decades. It turns out that natural ocean cycles, the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and the Atlantic Meridonal Oscillation (AMO), have both been in their warm phases for the last few decades, and are both shifting to their cool phases. The combination of the natural cycles of warm PDO, AMO, and El Nino intersected to make 1998 as hot as 1934, not man-made CO2. Worse yet for the global warming alarmists, the consensus among climatologists, and this is a real consensus unlike the falsely claimed consensus that man-made CO2 is dangerous, is the planet is entering a period of global cooling.

Even global warming alarmists have been forced to admit that natural climate cycles outweigh any impact on climate by man and that the planet is going to cool for the next 10 to 20 years, at least. Cooling has already started. Last year, global temperatures dropped by 0.7 degrees Celsius. That's almost as much cooling in 1 year as all the warming in the entire 20th century. Now that's newsworthy, but you'll have a hard time finding a story on it.

The alarmists dealt with this admission predictably - they changed their story. They claimed they expected global cooling all along. Funny, they never mentioned that. The IPCC reports from 2001 and 2007, the alarmists' bible from just last year and earlier, never mentioned global cooling. Al Gore's film never mentioned it. I've read hundreds of global warming news stories in the last few years, and not one mentioned global cooling along the way. The global warming alarmists are scrambling, and they'll say anything to keep their fraud alive. It's too lucrative for them to tell the truth.

But the news keeps getting worse. All energy on the earth comes from the sun, which makes the sun the major driver of climate, and the tiniest change in solar output or activity affects Earth's climate. Upcoming solar cycle 24 started late, and not just a little bit late. Solar cycle 24 started over a year late, and still shows no signs of surpassing cycle 23 any time soon. The last time a new solar cycle started this late was in 1790, when an entire sunspot cycle was virtually missed. Called the Dalton Minimum, this period of no sunspot activity chilled the planet for 40 years to point where the Thames regularly froze over in London.

We're facing the specter of significant global cooling, harsh winters, shortened growing seasons, and crop failures. And about the only thing we can do about it is add CO2 to the atmosphere, not because CO2 warms the planet, it has only a minuscule effect on climate, but because CO2 is a plant food. CO2 makes plants grow bigger and faster, which could help offset the shortened growing seasons that result from global cooling. CO2 is good for the environment and humanity.

But the climate change alarmists have momentum in government. Their agenda, the new communism, resonates with power-hungry professional politicians. Despite the solid evidence we're facing a global cooling problem and never were facing a global warming problem, the politicians have seized the anti-capitalist attack on man-made CO2 to boost their power at our expense. The British parliament is debating a carbon rationing card. Except for government officials, of course, Britons would have to ask permission to board an airplane, get gas, or turn up their thermostats. Your carbon papers, comrade!

Polar bear numbers are at record levels, between 20,000 and 25,000, yet Marxists posing as environmentalists succeeded in listing polar bears as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. This is the first time that a species has been listed based solely on climate computer models – models that aren't peer accepted because they don't work when run backwards, and are therefore proven inaccurate. Within a week of polar bears being listed, the Marxists filed suit to force the administration to consider man-made CO2 in every US development – ostensibly to protect the polar bears – but in reality to cripple America's economic development.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton support draconian carbon caps, and John McCain supports the Warner-Lieberman bill, misnamed the Climate Security Act, a carbon cap and trade policy that's really a hidden tax that hasn't worked in Europe. The bill also mandates carbon sequestration, a technology that doesn't exist because there's no market for it. All these programs would put Americans out of work, increase poverty throughout the country and the world, and leave more people unable to adapt to global cooling. Despite more effective reduction in CO2 emissions by the private sector in the US than government mandates in Europe, both Democrat and Republican politicians prefer government mandates that harm Americans but boost the politicians' power. These plans will cost lives.

12,000 years ago, the leading edge of a glacier rested in Moraine, Ohio, giving the town its name. Humans didn't make that glacier advance or retreat, we adapted. We don't understand the cycles of the Earth and sun, let alone have the power to control them. Our species is so successful because our big brains enable us to adapt, and the solution to inevitable climate change has always been to grow our wealth so we can better adapt, but first we have to overcome the self-serving agendas of the anthropogenic global warming con-men and our power-hungry politicians.

Free kibbles

Democrat activists demagogue telecom wiretap immunity compromise. They didn't have any problems when Bill Clinton had warrantless wiretaps in poor black neighborhoods in the name of the war on drugs. This is just hyper-partisanship in action. They don't really want companies to refuse to cooperate with government on wiretaps. Cato ignores the fact that the president's war powers allow him to eavesdrop on suspected enemies in a time of war without warrants. Presenting this issue as if war powers don't matter is disingenuous.

EU lifts sanctions against Cuba. Wow. I'm sure the Castros are pleased. They'll love the additional power that gives them. That has to be a desperate attempt to revive ailing EU economies. Cato says this decision isolates the US, which is true. All to often the US is left being the only nation doing the right thing, as in trying to deter Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, and in this case fighting communism.

Israeli air force exercise practice for bombing Iran's nuclear facilities. Cato discounts the advantages of kicking can down the road a few years when examining the consequences of an airstrike on Iran's nuclear facilities. Iran's oil infrastructure is falling apart. When it collapses, the regime will collapse. If we can keep that regime from getting nuclear weapons for 5 more years, that regime no longer be around to develop them.

Members of police, the military, and prison system have been forced to vote for Mugabe in Zimbabwe's run-off election. Challenger considers withdrawing.

Ohio teacher not only teaches creationism instead of science in his science class, he burns crosses into the arms of his students. Yikes! Why is it always Ohio?

What is this Enron loophole that McCain's aids made?

Contrary to what the press is trying to say, lifting the ban on offshore drilling will help oil prices immediately because speculators will start selling off oil futures. And we'll recover oil much quicker than in 7 years, unless government drags the process out for years longer than necessary.

Doctors want to treat people for using the internet too much. I'm sure it's a great source of revenue for them, so they've created a clinical definition for internet addiction. Just turn the computer off. They'll be fine. Tell them to start playing basketball instead.

White material under Mars lander disappears, just like ice would do. Get some in an oven and test it already.

World population to hit 7 billion by 2012. And those aren't Europeans or Americans who are being born.

This would be so funny if it wasn't so dangerous. Because Europe's elite weren't happy with the rejection of the EU treaty by Irish voters, they plan to coerce a re-vote. I guess they'll keep forcing re-votes until the voters have finally succumbed to their power grab and run out of steam. The voters have lives. They can't spend their entire lives fighting government aristocrats. The government aristocrats have nothing else to do but assault the voters until they win their power grab. If you can't figure out the nature of government and choose to never surrender power to government from this blatant example, I don't know what will convince you.

I like this headline: Bush lost public's confidence. Like it was all his fault. The irresponsible attacks by Democrats processed through the supportive megaphone of the mainstream press had nothing to do with it. McClelland's poor performance had nothing to do with it. Of course Bush made mistakes in Iraq. Bad ones. But the irresponsible attacks by Democrats instead of attempts to help right the ship are equally at fault. And the press choosing to magnify the irresponsibility instead of positions that could have helped us to a quicker, less costly victory, is also at fault. They're still propagating the discredited and disproved "Bush lied" meme.

Sandals that carry liquor. Now this shows the power of entrepreneurship and how government can only pervert markets, not deny them. Sweet.

LP on habeas corpus.

Oklahoma resolves to tell the Federal government to stick it where the sun doesn't shine based on the 10th amendment. This says it was passed on Sunday, and that makes it suspect to me. But I love the sentiment and hope its factual. Looks real.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Free kibbles

Democrats call for nationalization of refineries so government "can control how much gets out into the market!" That's the scariest thing I've heard from government yet. Republicans should make this a huge campaign issue.

After playing political football with our security for years, Democrats finally do the right thing and agree to a deal for telecom immunity for wiretaps. It's outrageous that they waited years to provide freedom from lawsuits to companies that help our government provide security. If you don't like wiretaps, you can vote for another president, but having companies threatened for helping the government is ridiculous. This shows the power of the American people. Democrats feared them in an election, as well they should.

Treasury Sec. Paulson wants to give the Fed new powers to police Wall St. No thanks. We need to remove the Fed's powers to continue corrupting our economy and creating these boom/bust cycles like the bust we're going through now. Cato says history shows the Fed's powers are cause of financial problems, not a limiter of them.

FBI arrests hundreds for subprime mortgage fraud including 2 Bear Stearns managers. This will be interesting. If these guys really committed fraud, they should be punished. But it could well be a witch hunt as the government tries to distract voters from its role in creating this crisis.

Here we go again. We just got through the worst of a credit crisis that was sparked by government forcing lenders to make risky loans, called subprime loans, to people who were credit risks, and made worse by a tax code that rewards borrowing while punishing savings, and by the Fed's loose money supply. Learning nothing from this, Democrats introduce a bill forcing lenders to make student loans to any student attending a qualified college, whether they are bad credit risks, bad risks for graduating, or not. Let these congressmen loan these bad risks money out of their own pockets, and leave everybody else alone. Cato explains that low graduation rates show we have far too many people in college who can't handle it already, and this will make the problem worse, driving up prices and forcing bad credit into the credit markets again.

Western oil companies are negotiating oil contracts with Iraq. Good deal. It's about time we got something back for freeing Iraqis from Saddam. This isn't THE reason we went to war in Iraq like some would have us believe, but getting oil contracts is good for the US, and oil had better have been a major factor when making the decision to invade Iraq, or Bush would have been even more stupid than most of us think.

NATO and Afghan forces rout Taliban outside of Kandahar.

California Democrats and Schwarzenegger prefer forcing Americans to pay $4 per gallon for gas to drilling off the California coast. Those rich elitists can afford it. We won't even have to lift the ban to make prices drop. The more this gets debated, the more it looks like the ban might be lifted, the more speculators will sell off oil futures and prices will come down. Actually lifting the ban will bring prices down even more.

The EU agenda of Europe's political elite likely to go forward despite another rejection by voters. European elites don't care about the will of the people, who have rejected the EU power grab over and over for 15 years. This shows one of the essential truths of government. Government will continue to take power over time regardless of the will of the people. If they don't get more power today, they'll come back for more power tomorrow. And the day after. And the day after that. Always under the guise of being for the good of the people. Governments never surrender power willingly.

The bodies of four opposition activists abducted in Zimbabwe discovered.

Treasury Sec. Paulson wants to give the Fed new powers to police Wall St. No thanks. We need to remove the Fed's powers to continue corrupting our economy and creating these boom/bust cycles like the bust we're going through now. Cato says history shows the Fed's powers are cause of financial problems, not a limiter of them.

Reason thinks concern over the Supreme Court decision extending habeas corpus to unlawful enemy combatants, who have less rights than prisoners of war according to the Geneva Convention, held overseas is unwarranted.

Democrats abandon Obama on his anti-Iraq war position, funding the Iraq war with no debate and no call for a time table for withdrawal. They're hiding from the issue because they were so blatantly wrong, so blatantly invested in defeat instead of victory, and they don't want voters to talk about that. Watch for Obama to change his position on the Iraq war to one calling for victory before the election. He's not going to stay out there as the only prominent person on America who doesn't see the phenomenal progress being made in Iraq now.

Obama decides to break his commitment to use public financing. He should never have made that commitment in the first place. This just reminds everybody he's just a standard government aristocrat who's word is worthless. And in typical Obama fashion, he doesn't take responsibility for his decision - instead he blames the "broken system". That system is exactly the same as it was when he made the commitment. This guy has a serious mental problem with taking responsibility for his actions, and the press keeps giving him a pass.

Here's a messianic picture of Obama in front of dove and "Jesus Christ is Lord" wall relief.

If Condi Rice would be his VP, she would make McCain a big winner.

On what principle does McCain base his newfound position on allowing states to decide about drilling offshore but continuing to ban drill in ANWR? Isn't Alaska a state?

I like Ron Paul a lot, but his claim that bin Laden loves what we have done is dead wrong. We're crushing al Qaeda and its affiliates all over the globe including in bin Laden's chosen central front in the war on terror, Iraq. Bin Laden thanks God he hasn't been on the receiving end of a 2,000 bomb every morning and worries about it all day, every day. His terror movement has been resoundingly rejected by his hopeful allies, the Sunni Arabs. He's watching his dream of a new caliphate get blown to hell by the US and its allies. He doesn't love what's going on.

The senior officer acquitted for the Haditha incident considers suing Rep. Murtha for calling those Marines cold blooded killers. Go for it. Drag that slimy dog through the courts.

Australians more obese than Americans. I'll scratch Australia off of my places to visit.

Romanians re-elect dead mayor because they don't want change and didn't like the opponent.

Cato explains that aid to Africa is part of Africa's problem and should be reduced in favor of intra-African solutions to African problems. Welfare is destructive to recipients and providers alike.

Karl Rove hits at Obama and McCain for their failure to understand economics, markets, and oil companies.

British police unit spends $200,000 of taxpayer money trying to find a chemical and biological hazard suit that would accommodate Sikh beards and turbans. This is nuts. They should have standards that are the same for everybody to accommodate the suit. Standards like no facial hair and no hats inside the suit. If Sikhs choose not to meet the standards, that fine, but the standards shouldn't change for different religions or cultures.

If you want to be immune from the economic downturn, get elected to Congress. That's the quickest get-rich scheme there is.

Even the leftist L.A. Times understands that Bush did not lie to convince us to go to war in Iraq, shoots down the partisan report recently released by the Senate which even acknowledges the intelligence was flawed and has no support for claiming the Bush administration lied, and shows that the liberals who are propagating this Big Lie are trying to rewrite history by pretending that incorrect intelligence from the CIA is equivalent to Bush lying.

I would love to see corporate welfare declared unconstitutional. Not just because it is, but because all welfare is unconstitutional and we could put an end to all of if.

Ann Coulter rips the Supreme Court's ruling giving habeas corpus rights to enemy detainees. Fred Thompson on same.

More and more people are noticing that Obama isn't very bright. This guy points out that Obama has a poor understanding of the Nuremberg trials and the first World Trade Center bombing trials. Ralph Peters says the press is giving Obama a pass on national security. That's an understatement.

Condoleezza Rice on US policy towards Asia at the Heritage Foundation.

General Petraeus to the rescue in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Free kibbles

Bush pressures Congress to lift offshore drilling ban. Good for him. Force Democrats to vote against it. Or for it. Obama says this won't lower the price. Obama's an idiot. On the one hand, he says speculation is a problem, but on the other, he says drilling won't have an effect. Just lifting the ban will bring down the price of oil significantly. He also says it isn't a long term solution. Of course it is. This will lower the price of oil for the next 40 years.

China and Japan reach a deal to drill for oil in the China Sea. We're the only country stupid enough to leave our resources buried in the ground where they're no good to anybody.

Afghan and NATO forces expel Taliban from outskirts of Kandahar.

I wish I had a nickel for every time liberals claimed they had "proof" of torture at Guantanamo.

The press made a big deal about Gore transforming his mansion to be more green. (They didn't make a big deal that it hadn't been green before.) But facts are facts, and Gore's mansion now uses 10% more energy than before. The world according to Gore is that poor people have to suffer and use less energy, but he can keep spewing CO2 into the atmosphere at 20 times the rate of a normal American. Gore hasn't bothered to cut his energy use in a decade. Actions speak louder than words, and this guy doesn't even believe his own bull.

Good for McCain for calling for 45 new nuclear power plants. This article shows that arctic ice cover is almost identical to the average for the last 35 years. The difference is negligible. If he was to show this graph for each year of the last 35, this wouldn't even make you blink an eye. But the author makes it sound like a crisis. What a bunch of crap.

Muslim women in headscarves removed from photo-op with Obama. Obama campaign apologizes, but the situation illustrates Obama's quandary. If he gets his picture taken with a bunch of Muslims, it could work against him.

Cindy McCain calls out Michelle Obama over her "never been proud of America" comment, directly taking on Mrs. Obama's manufactured image makeover. How funny. Cat fight!

Tiger Woods to have season ending knee surgery after his spectacular win at the US. Open. It turns out besides his recent recovery from cartilage surgery, he was fighting a bad ligament and a stress fracture. A guy on sports talk Monday called Tiger the greatest athlete of our lifetimes, and he's probably right. What separates Tiger from the rest of the golfers is that he is an athlete in a non-athletic sport. Retief Goosen showed what a jerk he is when he claimed Tiger was faking it.

The Celtics were definitely the better team, defeating the Lakers in 6. Of the best teams in the west, San Antonio knocked out New Orleans in the second round, and San Antonio never recovered their energy from that series to beat the 3rd best team in the west.

Phoenix lander hasn't found water yet.

Reason recognizes that the Americans die younger than people from other countries because we're fatter.

The Firefox download day seems to have been a success, but I didn't install mine. Installing the initial release is usually bad practice, and it seems like there are some vulnerabilities. I'll wait a few days.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Free kibbles

Baghdad bomb kills 51. Al Qaeda isn't defeated yet.

Hamas claims to be near a truce with Israel. What does this even mean? Hamas won't murder any Israelis for a couple months? All this is is a chance for Hamas to rearm and regroup so they can be more effective the next time they start murdering Israelis. How many times are we going to watch this sham repeat itself? This is the sign that Israel has Hamas on the run, disorganized and hurting. Israel should press its advantage, not back off. Ceasefire agreement.

Taliban prepare for major battle near Kandahar. We can only hope. They can never win a major battle against western forces. This is more likely a ruse, and they'll fade back into the woodwork.

France to rejoin NATO command. About time. You have to like Sarkozy, and it makes me wonder if the French people haven't been more reasonable all this time, just boondoggled by Mitterand and Chirac. The French were wonderful people when I was there years ago. Not like their government was.

It looks like the Darfur civil war is spreading into Chad.

Inflation, indicated by wholesale prices, jumps the highest in 6 months. Thanks, government. Banana prices skyrocket.

Reason disputes the Feds' claim that reduction in meth use is because of the war on drugs, showing a graph that meth use has been declining for 30 years. I think meth use is declining because it ruins lives and the more lives it ruins, the more people learn about it.

Democrats take the lead on stronger border security. Nice job, Republicans.

McCain is changing his stance and calling for offshore drilling. About time. It's just amazing Democrats can get away with pandering to the tiny minority of Americans who prefer high oil prices to drilling off the coasts and punishing the vast majority of us with high gas prices. Why do we allow them to stay in office when they do that? McCain should also call for ending oil company subsidies. He take all libertarian positions. McCain links Obama's windfall profits tax to Carter. Good for him. There's some good likes to be had about Obama, Carter, and the 70s. How about a cartoon of Obama with Carter's buck teeth?

How nice of Obama to visit Iraq and Afghanistan before the election, instead of just demagoguing them from a position of ignorance.

Ron Paul transforms his campaign into the next phase of education on liberty.

Road rage linked to bumper stickers and other personal modifications to car.

I just downloaded the pre-release of Firefox 3 because the actual release wasn't up yet. I'll check back later. This is a great marketing idea for Firefox.

Gay brains sized like those of the opposite sex. The study doesn't seem to address whether that is because of genetics or environment, but at least one doctor concluded it was because of genetics anyway. It would be pretty easy to find out. Check the brains of fetuses and see if you can use them has a predictor of homosexuality.

Mickey Kaus examines Obama's social security plan.

With all the whining by Europe's elites because Irish voters rejected surrendering their power to the EU, it makes you wonder how Europe survived for the last thousand years. Europe is facing a real crisis, but it nothing to do with the EU. Europeans are choosing to go extinct. A crisis of genetics that is taking the form of a crisis of culture. This is the ultimate danger of our big brains.

Quakers overcome California's loyalty oath.

Radical Muslim cleric deeply involved in 911 works the British legal system to win release. British authorities should put him on a plane to Guantanamo.

Cato explains that Bernanke's warning about rising health care costs suggested more government involvement to keep them down. Great. We have a socialist running the Fed. I have a question for Bernanke. When was the last time government involvement in the free market caused prices to drop or made any improvement? Boortz only hits the low hanging fruit about health care breaking us. He doesn't even mention Bernanke's socialist leanings.

Good for the WSJ to point out that the bull being spewed by Democrats about harsh interrogation techniques is pure political posturing after Democrats supported those same techniques after 9/11. As poorly as Republicans governed for 6 years, and as lying as Republicans are, Democrats make them look like saints by comparison. It's just stunning how no matter how sleazy and destructive Republicans are to America, Democrats are always significantly worse. Republicans are the second worst thing that ever happened to this country. Democrats are the worst.

Note to self: don't take a job at Apple. Their salaries are way too low.

The gasoline business is so bad, that Exxon is selling its corporate owned gas stations and franchises. Don't feel bad for Exxon, but recognize what's going on here. US businesses including BIG OIL are cutting their margins razor thin to keep gasoline as cheap as possible for Americans. Congress is our problem, not oil companies.