Friday, December 31, 2010

Any Average Idiot Could Fix The Economy. Unfortunately we didn't elect an average idiot. #tcot #teaparty

How hard is it to say:

  • I'm going to let people drill for oil.

  • I'm going to order California's water back on.

  • I'm going to drop this Cap and Trade nonsense.

  • I'm going to leave taxes where they are.

Apparently that stuff is pretty hard for this president.

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The Valley That Jobs Forgot

If one had to guess where unemployment is highest in the US, most would probably suggest Detroit or Michigan as a whole.  Others who paid attention to the midterm elections would know that Nevada surpassed Michigan as the state with the highest unemployment rate about mid-year.  Others might guess Florida.  However, in terms of metropolitan areas with the highest levels of joblessness, a new survey by the Birmingham Business Journal shows that California’s Central Valley is the epicenter for unemployment.

  • El Centro, CA – 29.3% (east of San Diego near border with Mexico)

  • Yuma, AZ – 26.7%

  • Yuba City, CA – 17.8%

  • Merced, CA – 16.3%

  • Stockton, CA – 16.3%

  • Modesto, CA – 16.2%

  • Visalia-Porterville, CA – 15.9%

  • Fresno, CA – 15.7%

  • Palm Coast, FL – 15.5%

  • Hanford – Corcoran, CA – 15.0%

Why has California become the epicenter of unemployment?  While Michigan and Florida have a mix of problems, including (in Michigan’s case) a history of bad management decisions on labor contracts, California’s Central Valley woes are entirely a government creation.  As I wrote yesterday, the decision by a federal judge to cut off water supplies to an area that literally fed the world turned the Central Valley from an agricultural export powerhouse to a center of starvation within two years.  Congress has refused to act to reverse this decision, and as a result, almost a quarter of the families in the area now need government assistance to feed themselves while living on some of the most productive land in the world.


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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Reince Priebus -- Foe of Tea Party Movement? #teaparty #tcot #rnc

It seems that Reince Priebus, candidate for National RNC Chairman, wants credit for electoral gains in Wisconsin in 2010. But he may have had little to do with it, and in fact may have been actively working to defeat the Tea Party movement.

More investigation is clearly needed, but now is not the time to have someone at RNC who cannot work with the Tea Parties.

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As a grassroots network of concerned citizens dedicated to upholding of individual liberty, limited government, and free enterprise within the Republican Party, the Republican Liberty Caucus questions Mr. Priebus’s commitment to core constitutional principles as well as the rule changes that disenfranchised Wisconsin GOP primary voters under his watch.

The Republican Liberty Caucus has been a vocal critic of the 2010 Wisconsin GOP’s rule change, which made it easier to endorse by lowering the percentage of delegate votes that a candidate must receive for endorsement, removing the possibility of voting for “no endorsement”, and give the state executive committee the power to decide which candidates are “viable” and limit the possible choices of the delegates to these approved candidates.  “Giving candidates the official GOP endorsement and large sums of party donor money prior to Wisconsin’s primary disenfranchises Wisconsin’s conservative grassroots voters – including the Tea Party,” said Murphy.  This is exactly what happened while Mr. Priebus was state chair.

“Not only was donor money collected by the Wisconsin GOP directed to defeating other non-establishment Republican candidates without donor consent, but the Wisconsin GOP also paid for polls that excluded these non-establishment GOP primary candidates as ballot options while mentioning front-runner endorsed GOP candidates and their Democrat opponents” (source:


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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Hey Mitch Daniels -- Want to be President? Better support the right to work. #tcot #teaparty

Compelling people to join a union, which will take their money and give it to Marxist politicians, is not right.

If Mitch wants to have a further career, he should lead, not worry about political capital.

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A fuller response to "if gay marriage hurts yours..." #tcot @CorieWhalen @stackiii @peterflom @dmataconis

See the rest at Redstate.

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I despise illogical argument, and I love my wife.  But just as much, I love my culture, that sum of received practice, belief, and wisdom I have come to share, or to believe I share, with those around me.

So my hair stands on end when libertarian Doug Mataconis of Outside the Beltway (and dozens of others, apparently) retweet self-described liberal statistician Peter Flom:

If gay marriage threatens your marriage, you haven’t got much of a marriage.

That little line, destined to become a liberal talking point, encapsulates at least two logical fallacies.

First, no one I’m aware of is arguing that their own marriage will be harmed by allowing people who are unqualified to marry to do so.  Straw man arguments are often appealing to those already convinced, but merely draw ire from those who disagree.

Second, it exhibits the Fallacy of Division, in which the parts of a thing are conflated with the whole. It is not the case that two unqualified individuals marrying harms my marriage in any appreciable way, nor do they even harm marriage itself.  But in the aggregate, the change to the structure of the institution is profound.


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Monday, December 27, 2010

The Great American Drive In is January 5. Will you be there? #teaparty #tcot

The 112th Congress needs to know that we have our eyes on them. They won't be allowed to slide into bad habits, at least not without some publicity.

So some folks are planning to show up to let them know just that.

There are even guidelines for good behavior posted at the site set up for the event (see below).

I have another suggestion to keep traffic moving at the optimal speed. If a car should happen to break down or run out of fuel, make sure to merge one car at a time. There is to be none of this stopping to let the entire lane go at once.

Oh, and make sure to advance just as far as you can before merging. Someone will be nice and let you in.

If you follow these guidelines, you will be sure to have an eventful stay in the District.

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  1. Remember we are not here to break traffic laws by deliberately blocking intersections or roads.

    If you do, you WILL become a revenue source.

  2. Remember DC is crawling with red light cameras.

    We suggest stopping as soon as the light turns yellow to avoid traffic fines.  Don’t become a revenue source.

  3. After the light turns green it is important to wait a second or two to allow any drunken congressmen time to run the light as they race to be sworn in. Remember Safety First!!!

  4. Right on Red may be legal but it is not required.


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Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Christmas

Is Christmas about Christ, or is it about reindeer?

Why, yes.

Christmas is a celebration of the virgin birth of Jesus the Christ, Y'shua the Messiah, in a manger in Bethlehem. It's a tale of wise men (who weren't there) and shepherds (who were).

It's also a celebration of the dead of Winter, a memory of the cold days of the Little Ice Age in Europe -- and perhaps some dim memory of even colder days past in a real Ice Age. The last warmth of Summer is gone by the time of the solstice, and we have time to gather together in our little hovels and share the fruits of our year's labor with those we love.

So while some consider the holiday's origins pagan, it's ours now. Merry Christmas!

And to those who find a dichotomy in the dualism, who see a conflict between magical reindeer and frankincense, I say: quit being humbugs. Sing about Rudolph, enjoy your stocking stuffers, blow your wad at Wal-Mart, and give shelter to needy travelers.

Because Christmas is Christmas, and there's no need to pin it down more than that.

(Expanded from an old post at the Academy. Thanks to for the pic.)

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

ObamaCare Was Not Enough Power for Sebelius #tcot #teaparty #hcr

As Secretary of HHS, Kathleen Sebelius was given tremendous power under the PPACA (ObamaCare). The hailstorm of "the Secretary may" in the Act is rivaled only by that of "the Secretary shall".

For instance, the Act gives her the responsibility for setting the price points of the "Gold", "Silver", and "Bronze" insurance plans available under the various state exchanges. That there should be one price for all plans of the same type across the country is bad enough, but that you can only buy insurance from inside your state is in some ways worse.

But now Sebelius has decided that she can set insurance prices at will.

ObamaCare must be repealed. And Secretary Sebelius must be hauled in front of Congress to explain why she claims power that not even the Pelosi Congress ever gave her.

And after that, she should resign.

Read more from Jeffrey H. Anderson at TWS:

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Sebelius Seizes Even More Power

Not satisfied with the colossal amounts of power that she would acquire under Obamacare if it isn't repealed, Health and Human Services (HHS) secretary Kathleen Sebelius has issued a 136-page "rule" that will now give her (and her subordinates) largely unchecked power to pass judgment on the prices of health insurance throughout the United States. Notwithstanding the fact that 43 states already regulate and approve health insurance premiums, Sebelius claims that we need an additional, more centralized, protection against insurers' unseemly 'profit motive.' But a far greater threat to the future of American republicanism is posed by the impulse that animates Sebelius and the bulk of the Obama administration: the power motive.


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Obama reaches out to business -- to grab their loot #tcot #ATR #teaparty

Barack Obama, like the rest of the socialist left, hates business. He believes that anyone who has money either is a thief or inherited it from a long line of thieves, and in either case ought to seriously consider how much is enough.

So it comes as no surprise that he thinks business is just sitting on $2T because the right yacht hasn't come up for sale yet.

In fact, it is his very policies that are keeping businesses on the sidelines.

Read more over at Americans for Tax Reform.

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Obama Offers Poisoned Olive Branch to Businesses

Last Wednesday, President Obama met with 20 leaders of major corporations to discuss cooperation on job growth and economic recovery.  This bridge-building is a departure from the current administration’s typically contentious attitude toward Big Business.
Indeed, Obama’s newfound solicitousness seems to be based more on his old thinly veiled redistributionist rhetoric than a substantial change in attitude toward American business. In his own words, he wanted his guests to provide “ideas that will help businesses to invest in America and American jobs, at a time when they are holding nearly $2 trillion on their books.”  Increased employment and investment is a grand thing, but the President’s emphasis on company holdings shows the true foundation of his thinking: Wall Street and corporate America are keeping money from the public, money to which they have little or no right.

The truth, of course, is that both companies and investors will only throw their money around to the public’s benefit when it is economically safer to do so.  That this hasn’t happened yet shouldn’t be an indication of Gekko-esque greed, as the Obama administration and their Democrat allies would have us believe, but rather an indication that business leaders have seen through Obama’s half-hearted overtures and perceived his ingrained enmity against private American businesses. 

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Thursday, December 16, 2010

‘Twas The Lame Duck Before Christmas | RedState


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Thou Shalt Not Covet #teaparty #tcot #p2

Nestled smack between the evil twins of Greed and Envy there is a sniveling, perpetually tortured coward named Covetousness.

Those who covet what belongs to others will never be happy, boiled as they are in the bubbling couldron of comparison.

Leftists love to label conservatives greedy, but the conservatives I know are simply motivated to do well in whatever they do. They toil not for the spoils of wealth but for the satisfying thrill of accomplishment.

Jennifer Booth of Modern Conservative delves into this topic.

Thou Shalt Not Covet

Jennifer Booth
December 13, 2010

My name is Jennifer, and I am not a Covetist. I do not constantly harp over what my neighbor has. I do not care about his car, I do not want a plastic surgery enhanced spouse. I do not envy his situation, I do not hate him for his job. I do not want his income. I am not a Covetist, because I want my own things which I earn in my own life. It is the job of the liberal progressive to train me into thinking that I should want what my neighbor has, particularly if he is better off financially. Covetism surrounds the belief that my evil rich neighbor isn’t entitled to what he has in his bank account because he could only have done that off my back, i.e. the little guy (gal). Anyone who wants to vilify the rich because they are rich are Covetists, a name to describe the hateful discrimination that surrounds the state of class warfare in our country, by means of nothing but jealousy, insecurity, and sheer laziness.


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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Perils of automatic translation, pliant blackamoor edition

I wondered what was all of the fuss about Vladamir Putin's alleged romance of a Russian gymnast. Then I learned the horrible truth: the girl is "the most pliant blackamoor" you'll ever hope to meet.

Except she's not a blackamoor, a word I have never before to my knowledge used.

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Alina Kabaeva is famous as the most pliant blackamoor in Russia as well as is allegedly Vladimir Putin's mistress. Now she's on the counterbalance of Russian Vogue. Alina is the saucy Russian who won Olympic metallic rhythmic gymnasts in Athens 2000, gained a centre in the Duma as well as – maybe, meet probably – unsmooth Vladimir Putin… Alina Maratovna Kabayeva (Russian: Али́на Мара́товна Каба́ева; Tatar: Älinä Marat qızı Qabayeva; dropped May. 12, 1983) is a Russian sportsmaster as well as leader .

Alina Kabayeva: Alina Kabaeva: Putin's Mistress On Vogue (photo)


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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Comcast-NBCUniversal deal: let companies decide how to serve their customers. #tcot #tech @HeartlandInst

The opposition to the merger of NBC's Universal content production unit with cable company Comcast comes from two general sources: those predisposed to worry about what big companies are doing, and big companies predisposed to worrying about what their competitors are doing.

Companies merge, spin off subsidiaries, and grow internally based on how they can best organize themselves to efficiently fit their markets. If they fail in that attempt, even if it's because their motives are nefarious in some way, the market will punish them.

It ultimately harms everyone for competitors to try to use the power of government to interfere with that process.

It is no less harmful when those pushing for regulation are mere busy-bodies, or those out to maximize their own power.

In the attached article there are some really great lines from Bruce Owen of Stanford, James Gattuso of Heritage, and Bartlett Cleland of IPI.

Policy Analysts: ‘Industry, Not Government, Should Determine Extent of Vertical Integration’

Consumers lose when the government tries to decide what amount of vertical integration is best, according to Bruce Owen, Stanford University senior fellow and Public Policy Program director.

Owen spoke on the proposed merger between Comcast and NBC and other issues confronting the information technology and telecommunications industries at the Technology Policy Institute forum, Antitrust and the Dynamics of Competition in High-Tech Industries, last October,
In his paper entitled “Antitrust and Vertical Integration in ‘New Economy’ Industries.” Owen said:  “There is no difference in principle between General Motors buying a parts maker and Comcast buying a program supplier. In each, there is a very strong presumption that the purchase will be good for consumers, and a small chance that it won’t.”

One necessary condition for a bad outcome is whether GM or Comcast possesses monopoly power, said Owen, addressing one of the concerns expressed by opponents of the proposed merger. “If there is competition in car manufacturing or in video distribution, the chances of a bad outcome are very remote,” said Owen. “That tells me that the FCC’s suspicions about vertical integration are not well-grounded. Acting on those suspicions by banning or penalizing vertical integration is the wrong policy.”

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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Solving the Mexican Problem, One Way or Another - Redstate #tcot #p2 #immigration #prohibition

LaborUnionReport at Redstate (see excerpt link below) makes the case that the instability of Mexico can be dealt with in a variety of ways, but deal with it we must.

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It's time to 'man up' and face a fact that most politicians know, but few care to admit.

With the exception of, perhaps, Texas governor Rick Perry, no public official wants to publicly admit an obvious fact: The United States of America will likely be forced to invade Mexico. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.  The question then becomes: What to do with Mexico after we invade it and wipe out the drug cartels (as much as can be). Does the United States merely return Mexico to a nation state of corrupt politicians, failed economic policies, and lawlessness, or do we annex Mexico and turn it into the 51st state?

Rather than nation building, which would be much more costly to the U.S. treasury (which can ill afford it), a case can be made for statehood (albeit, not without controversy), given the amount of Mexico’s citizenry that is already residing in the U.S., as well as Mexico’s historically mis-managed economy and resources (i.e., oil, farmland, beaches, ports, etc.). Moreoever, as so many illegal immigrants work already in the U.S., but send their earnings back to Mexico, by having Mexico become the 51st state, the money exported would not leave the U.S. but would stay in “our economy” and could offset the costs of an invasion/humanitarian mission. Most importantly, by assimilating Mexico into the U.S., with the Constitution it would solve the the issue of immigration reform in one fell swoop.


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Friday, December 10, 2010

New Committee Chair can do away with Card Check for good #unions #tcot #teaparty

Union bosses have spent the last several years in a deceitful effort to enrich themselves and destroy our economy and individual freedom with something called "card check".

Under card check, union bosses wanting to add to their client base would pass around cards at a given company. On each card would be written an employee's name and a box to check whether the employee wanted a union or not. If over half the employees wanted a union, then they all would be forced to join and pay dues.

As with all such elections, anyone not voting or voting against the union would be subject to reprisal. Given the brutal history of union organizers, threats of violence would not even need to be expressed.

Union organizers always cry about management intimidating workers into staying out of unions, but the truth is nothing like that. Unions make it harder for a person's hard work to pay off, since they reward sloth. Ambitious, hard-working people know they should stay away from unions if they want to get ahead.

No one should be forced to pay a union boss for exercising his right to trade his labor for pay. And no one should be made to fear wanting to do so on his own.

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Rep. John Kline & the Secret Ballot Protection Act

Congressman John Kline [R-MN] has been one of the House of Representatives’ most vocal opponents of SEIU’s labor board appointee, Craig Becker, as well as a vocal defender of workers’ right to choose by secret-ballot whether or not to become unionized. In that role, he has stood strong against union bosses as they have worked to strip workers right to a secret-ballot through passage of the job-destroying (and delusionally dubbed) Employee Free Anti-Choice Act.

“Job creation and American competitiveness are vital national priorities. As Chairman, I will ensure they are at the forefront of the Education and Labor Committee agenda.”

Given the five year push by union bosses to rid employees of their right to vote by secret-ballot, as well as this week’s NLRB decision institutionalizing card-check by collusion, Kline and his fellow Republicans are well suited to re-introduce the Secret Ballot Protection Act.


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Thursday, December 09, 2010

Heartland's Walker: #NetNeutrality still a "solution in search of a problem" #tcot

Commenting on FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski’s December 1 (pdf) announcement on network neutrality. Bruce E. Walker of The Heartland Institute’s InfoTech & Telecom News says:

“It has been said before but bears repeating: Network neutrality is yet another government regulatory solution in search of a problem.

“Internet service providers have performed admirably by self-managing their networks without intrusive government meddling. Public polls indicate the majority of U.S. citizens are quite happy with the broadband service they receive. Yet, under the guise of protecting ‘Internet freedom and openness,’ the Federal Communications Commission is proceeding with a widely unpopular and ultimately unnecessary agenda with the potential for a devastating impact on technical innovation and job creation.

“True, Chairman Genachowski has backed away from his previous proposal to reclassify the Internet as a Title II communications entity and has stated his commitment to allow ISPs ‘reasonable network management’ capabilities. He has compromised further by allowing ISPs to implement tiered pricing.

“Still, however watered-down this net neutrality proposal may be, it introduces the camel’s regulatory nose under the tent of one of the world’s heretofore most successful industries.

“Additionally, as noted by FCC Commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker, the FCC simply doesn’t possess the authority to act on this maneuver, timed for December 21 when most lawmakers and bureaucrats will have deserted Washington.

“In short, Genachowski’s new and improved version of net neutrality is a punt, but one it is hoped Congress will effectively block.”

The Heartland Institute, based in Chicago, is a 26-year-old national nonprofit research and education organization dedicated to advancing free markets.

19 South LaSalle Street #903 * Chicago, IL 60603

312/377-4000 phone * 312/377-5000 fax *

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Highways and bridges are exactly the earmarks we don't need. #tcot #teaparty

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Tuesday, December 07, 2010

F Chuck Todd is making no pretense of impartiality now. Strategizing openly with against Republicans.

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Republicans are "hostage takers"? You jerk. You stinking jerk.

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Julianna Goldman, Bloomberg White House correspondent is really quite pretty.

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Friday, December 03, 2010

Gettysburg bureaucrats get their wish: Civil War Chapel Burns - news rag ecstatic #tcot

Gettysburg, PA bureaucrats recently notified the United States Christian Commission, which built a replica of a Civil War chapel on a vacant lot in 2006, that the chapel would have to be torn down.

The letter itself gave no reason for the demand, but reports indicate that the structure, used as a working chapel in good weather, lacked proper restroom facilities.

It was insane. The bureaucrats did not understand, or did not care, that the function of the chapel as an historically accurate depiction of the kind of chapel used at the Battle of Gettysburg depended on, among other things, not having modern plumbing, wiring, or specific accessibility features. That's the way things were in the 1860s.

But the spin from the Gettysburg Times would have the reader believe that the code violations led to the fire.

The chapel has "drawn a lot of ire", Gettysburg Times?

Evil leftist rag.

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FIRE: Controversial chapel destroyed; 3 other downtown buildings burn

Fire broke out in the 100 block of Chambersburg Street in
Gettysburg at 3:38 Friday morning, destroying a Civil War chapel
that has drawn a lot of ire. Three other nearby buildings sustained
significant damage.

The U.S. Christian Commission operated the chapel in the second
block of Chambersburg Street. The wooden structure was built
without proper permits, according to officials, and the borough
recently issued an order to vacate.


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Let’s At Least Get Our Class Warfare Right | RedState #tcot #teaparty #RINOcon

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Let's At Least Get Our Class Warfare Right

It has come to my attention (thanks to Ace and Allahpundit) that certain politicians are presenting themselves as the champions of middle-class, tea party, solid conservative Republicans against the ... and that's where the storyline diverges.

OK, enough with the scare quotes.  For the rest of this post, just add them in yourself where you think they ought to be.

What is a RINO? The label means Republican In Name Only, of course, but it is a term without meaning outside of a small group who would really as soon be in some other party, were it not for the power they wield when more principled people are forced to make deals to get their votes.

A RINO stands out from real Republicans because he or she is willing to vote against his or her party on any issue at any time, with regard only to strategy, personal advancement, or electoral advantage. RINOs, in caricature, are unconstrained by ideology, in other words.

But few hold a party line position on every issue.  Even liberty-loving, highly doctrinaire conservative tea partying Redstate Republicans like me have dreams of dragging our party into the light on an issue or two. Where to draw the line on who is a RINO and who is a true Republican, then, is clearly a matter both of degree and of individual perspective.

So as a matter of political necessity, we band together and agree to ignore, for now, the 10% of issues on which we disagree in favor of the 90% of things in which we're in agreement.

And while there is some kind of loose correlation between old money and the Big Government Republicanism we came to despise in the Bush administrations, the blue bloods are not the problem, or at least, they don't define the full extent of the problem.

So when Ace says

I'm really not digging what I find to be a crudely reductivist, single-dimensional model of politics that many have seized on (Palin most prominently), that politics currently consists of almost nothing at all but "elitists" vs. the common.

I tend to agree, in part because I think we're all searching for a simple explanation for something that may not be simple.

Because if there is a problem with the blue blood, country club, Wall Street Republicans (as opposed to Wall Street Democrats), it is that are willing to work against our party on any issue at any time, with regard only to strategy, personal advancement, or commercial advantage. Blue bloods, in caricature, are unconstrained by ideology, in other words.

There is nothing wrong with being part of the Establishment per se, unless you want to be part of the Establishment because it's the Establishment. That is, we should no more reject a person's ideas because they are part of the Establishment than we would like to be kept from being in the Establishment because of our ideas.

Erick's "squish" label comes closest to defining the real battle.  What separates "us" from "them" is not money.  It isn't positions on a given issue or set of issues.  It's believing that issues matter in the first place.

Because squishes are willing to work against our party on any issue at any time, with regard only to strategy, personal advancement, or political advantage. squishes, in caricature, are unconstrained by ideology, in other words.

For many in Washington (and in statehouses), ideas are to be trotted out at election time and when the cameras are on, while they focus on the acquisition and administration of political power. While they may believe in the primacy of the Constitution, in limited government, or have deeply held personal beliefs on social issues, they use the ideas to win elections, rather than wanting to win elections to advance the ideas.

There are many Republicans, even those who are largely conservative, who view the government as a tool for advancing themselves in commerce.  I'm not talking about those who want the government to stay in its Constitutional box because that is best for the economy as a whole, but those who manipulate its special favor. As Erick says,

Likewise, the quest for these exemptions and deductions has had a corrupting influence within the conservative movement as businesses pay conservatives to support particular tax exemptions and deductions regardless of the merit. Some of the most vocal critics of streamlining the tax process in this country are coin operated conservatives who profit from lobbying for individual exemptions to benefit individual companies at the expense of everyone else.

In all of these cases -- the blue bloods, Establishment, the squishes, the elites and the RINOs -- the real problem is whether the person is advancing ideas or advancing themselves.

So next time someone responds to your plea for conservative principles with the importance of committee chairmanships or a majority in the Senate, understand that you're dealing with a ... well, with one of them.

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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

The Tequila Party: Proof Democrats Don't Get the #TeaParty Movement #tcot

Democrats love to gather into groups, and in fact tend to see the electorate as a bunch of groups rather than a nation of individuals.

So it's not surprising that they can't seem to organize except from the top down. has more.

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Liberals Still Don't Understand The Tea Parties

DOWNSTATEILADVOCATE.COM: Liberals Still Don't Understand The Tea Parties

Liberals Still Don't Understand The Tea Parties

Despite taking historic losses in the last midterm elections and being the focus of countless protests leading up to the midterms, the liberals still don't understand what the Tea Parties are.

I enter into evidence the possibility of a "Tequila Party".
Problem #1.  It's not grassroots if national leaders spawn the movement.  When we started our Tea Parties, no GOP or conservative leaders called us up and told us what to do.  The Tea Parties were a spontaneous reaction to the end of the Bush Presidency and the Obama/Pelosi/Reid policies in early 2009.  In fact, we were sitting on our couch the day Rick Santelli did his rant; we looked at each other and said "He's right, let's do a Tea Party".  Others around the nation who started Tea Parties I'm sure have similar stories.  History was written. 

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Thursday, November 25, 2010

The 57 States Gaffe

Like Sarah Palin, I draw some amusement at presidential candidate Barack Obama's famous mis-state-ment, thinking he had been insufficiently immersed in American civics as a child raised in Indonesia or wherever. When forced to think in a an unteleprompted environment, his unfamiliarity shone through, I thought. OK, on some level I still think that.

But then Brittany Cohan suggested that Obama was only joking about how long the 2008 campaign had been. Her evidence was that he "chuckles after he says it".

Having looked at the video again, I realized we were both wrong: Obama wasn't being stupid, but phony.

Here is the transcript, with vocal ticks included:

... uh, because, you know, i-i-it is just wonderful to be back in Oregon, and over the last 15 months we've traveled ... uh to every corner of the United States. Uh, I've now been in fifty ... ss-seven? states. I think one left to go. Uh, one left to go -- eh, Alaska and Hawaii I was not allowed to go to, even though I really wanted to visit but my staff would not, uh, justify it.

  • Obama says "fifty ... ss-seven states".

  • "One left to go"

  • "Alaska and Hawaii I was not allowed to go to"

  • After the crowd laughs, he smirks

Obama doesn't chuckle at all, but rather grins a bit. And as importantly, the little smirk is not from laughing at his own joke, but in response to the crowd.

The smirk is the typical Obama recovery, pretending that he is in on some joke that he is not. The technique is similar to the way Obama convinces people he's more intelligent than he is, by simply nodding along and saying they have a good point.

Obama simply misspoke. He meant to say he'd been in 47 states, with one left to go to visit all lower 48. Yet he was too arrogant to think the crowd was laughing at him. So he pretended to be in on the joke.  As usual when a person does that, they wind up looking like a worse fool than if they'd just asked what the joke was in the first place.

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Airline Expert: Body scanners ineffective waste of money | The Minority Report #tmr #tsa

I agree with Robert Crandall, former CEO of American Airlines and industry expert, that the scanner machines are a waste of money at any price, especially the bundle they cost.

But I disagree on the threat of a bomber attacking lines at the airport. If I thought a bomber were a threat, I'd think the scanners and pat-downs were worth it. But I dont believe that.

And the terrorists ought to be able to figure out by now where we keep our crowds. They're at sporting events and rallies protesting the Obama administration's antiterrorism procedures.

The TSA Imbroglio- Timely Advice From An Airline Legend

Robert Crandall, the former CEO of American Airlines, is an aviation legend. He piloted American through the turbulent days of deregulation. His emphasis on cutting costs, expanding capacity to lower average costs, and establishing the hub-and-spoke system made American prosper in an environment that put other equally established airlines into bankruptcy court.

Q. What do you think of the new full-body, advanced imaging technology scanners and/or more thorough body pat-downs of air travelers who opt out of the scans?

A. I think they are economically foolish. Full body scan machines are very expensive. And the fact of the matter is that they are not very useful from the security point of view, either. We are devoting very large resources of money and people to passengers who obviously represent no threat — children, grandmothers, long-established travelers…

We need to spend a lot more time trying to identify those who have some relatively high probability of being a threat and use our secondary resources — our full-body scanners and/or pat-downs — on those who might represent a threat


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Monday, November 22, 2010

TSA self-pleaser story is a hoax. My bad. But the real story is it's believable. #teaparty #tcot #tsa

[UPDATE: Hoax There is no mention of Rodney Schroeder on]

The False Dilemma presented by foul-mouthed TSA scanning department head Rodney Schroeder should outrage all Americans.

The White House, Department of Homeland Security, and Transportation Safety Administration are all using the fear of terrorism to extend their control over Americans. The false choice between getting blown up and being alternatively ogled or fondled by some low-level TSA stooge screams out the answer to its own question.

Because while the Administration contemplates giving a pass to those

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“What do you want to do, get blown up by a goddamn Arab at 30,000 feet or we get to see your private parts? It’s up to you, the ball’s in your park,” head of the TSA’s scanning department, Rodney Schroeder, told CNN.

“The young ladies were going through the scanner one by one, and every time one went through, this guys face was getting redder and redder. His hand was moving and then he started sweating. He was then seen doing his ‘O’ face. That’s when the security dragged him out of his booth and cuffed him. He had his pants round his ankles and everybody was really disgusted,” Jeb Rather, a passenger on a flight to New York told CBS news.

The controversial scanners display every minute detail of a person’s body and have been called intrusive by privacy campaigners. Body scanners penetrate clothing to provide a highly detailed image so accurate that critics have likened it to a virtual porn shoot. Technologies vary, with millimeter wave systems capturing highly detailed pictures of genitals, and backscatter X-ray machines able to show precise anatomical detail. The U.S. government likes the idea because body scanners can detect concealed weapons better than traditional magnetometers.


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No, we want you to put your pants back on and interview the "goddamn Arabs". #teaparty #tcot #tsa

The False Dilemma presented by foul-mouthed TSA scanning department head Rodney Schroeder should outrage all Americans.

The White House, Department of Homeland Security, and Transportation Safety Administration are all using the fear of terrorism to extend their control over Americans. The false choice between getting blown up and being alternatively ogled or fondled by some low-level TSA stooge screams out the answer to its own question.

Because while the Administration contemplates giving a pass to those "goddamn Arabs" to let them bypass security completely, we have TSA scanner operators literally masturbating at work.

Which is more unjust, to scan and/or grope the "goddamn Arabs", even though not all "goddamn Arabs" are out to blow up a plane, or to scan and/or grope everyone except Arabs, goddamned or otherwise?

It's people, not devices, who blow up planes. You're looking for devices, when you should be looking for terrorists.

Amplify’d from
“What do you want to do, get blown up by a goddamn Arab at 30,000 feet or we get to see your private parts? It’s up to you, the ball’s in your park,” head of the TSA’s scanning department, Rodney Schroeder, told CNN.

“The young ladies were going through the scanner one by one, and every time one went through, this guys face was getting redder and redder. His hand was moving and then he started sweating. He was then seen doing his ‘O’ face. That’s when the security dragged him out of his booth and cuffed him. He had his pants round his ankles and everybody was really disgusted,” Jeb Rather, a passenger on a flight to New York told CBS news.

The controversial scanners display every minute detail of a person’s body and have been called intrusive by privacy campaigners. Body scanners penetrate clothing to provide a highly detailed image so accurate that critics have likened it to a virtual porn shoot. Technologies vary, with millimeter wave systems capturing highly detailed pictures of genitals, and backscatter X-ray machines able to show precise anatomical detail. The U.S. government likes the idea because body scanners can detect concealed weapons better than traditional magnetometers.


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Friday, November 19, 2010

What was the question? #tcot #teaparty

Via Cato:

It seems a student of now-defunct economist Maynard Keynes fell asleep in class.  Keynes was upset by this, and shouted to wake the student.

"So, Mr Cluggman, what have you to say for yourself?  Do you know what I just asked the class?"

"Wel, sir," the somnolent student replied, "I don't know precisely what the question was, but I'm sure the answer was 'More stimulus''".

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The Millions Bring the Thousands Bring the Trillions | RedState #tcot #teaparty

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

President Obama Finally Gets His National Service Plan @knifework

President Obama is fond of the idea of compulsory national service, and the TSA crisis is too good to waste.

Remember, if you like your TSA screening job, you can keep it.

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Obama Administration Announces National Service Guidelines

In response to public interest in the TSA’s latest screening procedures, the Obama Administration has announced that henceforth all adults aged 3 to 31 will spend a year in a new National Service Corps. The announcement came at a joint press conference which featured an “all hands on deck” segment led by  President Barack Obama  and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano.

“Under my plan,” said the President, “young adults would be free to shop the National Service Exchanges. They could decide on their own,” the President continued, “between a year of intense Sex Education and  a year with the TSA.”

“We want to offer a choice,” stressed Napolitano.
“The Sex Education classes have long been one of the many service measures,” said Napolitano, “used by the U.S. and countries across the world to make government officials as well served as possible. They’re conducted by same-gender teachers, and all students have the right to request private sessions and have a student companion present during the sessions.”Read more at

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Three Things Wrong With The TSA | Redstate #tcot #tsa

See more at Redstate.

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What’s Wrong With The TSA?

The Transportation Safety Administration has three main areas of failure, of which employees fondling women and children is just the most obvious sign.

  • Adding security controls in reaction to incidents
  • Failing to use common sense

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Harley-Davidson Puts Wisconsin Some Learning, Turns Down the Money #teaparty #tcot #tlot

We've been saying it for years: the government should not be picking winners and losers with the tax code.

And now Harley realizes that the strings the government attaches to its tax credits are not worth the money.

Good for them. If I had the money to spare, I'd buy their stock.

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Harley Davidson takes the Libertarian Road on Subsidies: Wisconsin LP applauds decision

Libertarian Party: Wisconsin government micro-management fails

[Rothschild] Harley-Davidson Inc. has rejected the state’s offer of up to $25 million in tax credits aimed at keeping manufacturing jobs in Wisconsin, preferring to make its own management decisions without the strings that came with the offer from the Wisconsin Department of Commerce.

“Libertarians call for the Legislature to focus on governance and allow business owners to make business decisions. Wisconsin’s businesses are over taxed and over regulated,” said Maas. “The next session of the Legislature should focus on regaining Wisconsin’s advantages for employers; not just the large, influential ones, like Harley, but all of them. Our government should not be picking winners and losers in the economy.”


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Friday, November 12, 2010

Chiggers, Sand Fleas and Scorpions! #USMC

From a Recon Marine in Afghanistan ...

From the Sand Pit, it's freezing here.  I'm sitting on hard, cold dirt between rocks and shrubs at the base of the Hindu Kush Mountains , along the Dar 'yoi Pomir River , watching a hole that leads to a tunnel that leads to a cave.  Stake out, my friend, and no pizza delivery for thousands of miles.

I also glance at the area around my ass every ten to fifteen seconds to avoid another scorpion sting.  I've actually given up battling the chiggers and sand fleas, but the scorpions give a jolt like a cattle prod.  Hurts like a bastard.  The antidote tastes like transmission fluid, but God bless the Marine Corps for the five vials of it in my pack.

The one truth the Taliban cannot escape is that, believe it or not, they are human beings, which means they have to eat food and drink water.  That requires couriers and that's where an old bounty hunter like me comes in handy.  I track the couriers, locate the tunnel entrances and storage facilities, type the info into the handheld, shoot the coordinates up to the satellite link that tells the air commanders where to drop the hardware.  We bash some heads for a while, then I track and record the new movement.

It's all about intelligence.  We haven't even brought in the snipers yet.  These scurrying rats have no idea what they're in for.  We are but days away from cutting off supply lines and allowing the eradication to begin.

I dream of bin Laden waking up to find me standing over him with my boot on his throat as I spit into his face and plunge my nickel-plated Bowie knife through his frontal lobe.  But you know me, I'm a romantic.  I've said it before and I'll say it again: This country blows, man. It's not even a country.  There are no roads, there's no infrastructure, there's no government.  This is an inhospitable, rock pit, shit hole, ruled by eleventh century warring tribes.  There are no jobs here like we know jobs.

Afghanistan offers two ways for a man to support his family: join the opium trade or join the army.  That's it.  Those are your options.  Oh, I forgot, you can also live in a refugee camp and eat plum-sweetened, crushed beetle paste and squirt mud like a goose with stomach flu, if that's your idea of a party.  But the smell alone of those 'tent cities of the walking dead' is enough to hurl you into the poppy fields to cheerfully scrape bulbs for eighteen hours a day.

I've been living with these Tajiks and Uzbeks, and Turkmen and even a couple of Pushtuns, for over a month-and-a-half now, and this much I can say for sure:  These guys, all of 'em, are Huns...actual, living Huns.  They LIVE to fight.  It's what they do.  It's ALL they do.  They have no respect for anything, not for their families, nor for each other, nor for themselves.  They claw at one another as a way of life.  They play polo with dead calves and force their five-year-old sons into human cockfights to defend the family honor.  Huns, roaming packs of savage, heartless beasts who feed on each other's barbarism.  Cavemen with AK-47's.  Then again, maybe I'm just cranky.

I'm freezing my ass off on this stupid hill because my lap warmer is running out of juice, and I can't recharge it until the sun comes up in a few hours.  Oh yeah!  You like to write letters, right?  Do me a favor, Bizarre.  Write a letter to CNN and tell Wolf and Anderson and that awful, sneering, pompous Aaron Brown to stop calling the Taliban 'smart.'  They are not smart.  I suggest CNN invest in a dictionary because the word they are looking for is 'cunning.' The Taliban are cunning, like jackals and hyenas and wolverines.  They are sneaky and ruthless, and when confronted, cowardly.  They are hateful, malevolent parasites who create nothing and destroy everything else.  Smart.  Pfft.  Yeah, they're real smart.

They've spent their entire lives reading only one book (and not a very good one, as books go) and consider hygiene and indoor plumbing to be products of the devil.  They're still figuring out how to work a Bic lighter.  Talking to a Taliban warrior about improving his quality of life is like trying to teach an ape how to hold a pen; eventually he just gets frustrated and sticks you in the eye with it.

OK, enough.  Snuffle will be up soon, so I have to get back to my hole.  Covering my tracks in the snow takes a lot of practice, but I'm good at it.

Please, I tell you and my fellow Americans to turn off the TV sets and move on with your lives.  The story line you are getting from CNN and other news agencies is utter bullshit and designed not to deliver truth, but rather to keep you glued to the screen through the commercials.  We've got this one under control.  The worst thing you guys can do right now is sit around analyzing what we're doing over here, because you have no idea what we're doing, and really, you don't want to know.  We are your military, and we are doing what you sent us here to do.

Saucy Jack

Recon Marine in Afghanistan

Semper Fi

"Freedom is not free...but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your share".

Send this to ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS so that people here will really know what is going on over there.

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to 'The United States of America ' for an amount of 'up to and including my life.'  That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.'

May God Bless AMERICA and all those who serve, especially this MARINE!

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