October 31, 2012

Company Halloween Costume Contest

It's a small company with lots of creativity...

And the winner is... "Mickey Yoda" [yours truly.]

WP_000829.jpg

But dagny thinks:

bout time jg won one of these contests. Last year he was an, "Occupy protester." It was equally hilarious and equally in keeping with current events. Way to go jg!

berkeleysquare MT @notoserfdom "These aren't the dwarves you're looking for" #DisneyStarWars #3src 23 hours ago · reply · retweet · favorite

Posted by: dagny at October 31, 2012 5:03 PM

A Tribute to Reason

A Facebook friend -- not one of those, just an old musician buddy -- pens a poetic post about how nature reclaimed the island of Manhattan in the storm. It was well written.

But it was, of course, complete balderdash: hooey, if I may use such low tones.

Nature, threw a 100-year-storm punch at 50 million people. Thanks to the powers of reason and our accumulated innovation, those 50 million predicted and projected the storm, then took action to evade or prepare for it. Then they commenced to mop up.

The last death toll I saw was 61 and you know me better than to make light of it. Sadly, it is sure to increase substantially. But we are talking on the order of 1 in 1,000,000. I regret to remind that a similar storm hitting the Serengeti or the Island as purchased for $24 would kill almost everything in its wake, likely eradicating whole species.

We fangless, hairless, shivering homo sapiens watched the storm from our satellites and drove away in our SUVs or hunkered down in reinforced shelters with copious amounts of alcohol.

The lights were on in Times Square in every shot I saw. And now:

NEW YORK (AP) -- Two major airports reopened and the floor of the New York Stock Exchange came back to life Wednesday, while across the river in New Jersey, National Guardsmen rushed to rescue flood victims and fires still raged two days after Superstorm Sandy.

For the first time since the storm battered the Northeast, killing at least 61 people and inflicting billions of dollars in damage, brilliant sunshine washed over the nation's largest city -- a striking sight after days of gray skies, rain and wind.

At the stock exchange, running on generator power, Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave a thumbs-up and rang the opening bell to whoops from traders on the floor. Trading resumed after the first two-day weather shutdown since the Blizzard of 1888.


So hooray for our side! If it was exacerbated by global warming -- which I do not accept -- even if, the products of that innovation and wealth saved millions of people.

Humans armed with reason.

Philosophy Posted by John Kranz at 2:50 PM | What do you think? [8]
But jk thinks:

Awesome link -- we not only don't die, we don't stop delivery!!!!

Posted by: jk at October 31, 2012 3:47 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I say, not just a tribute to reason, but a tribute to the free market. I always like to say, "when you've lost the New York Times..."

Yes, that seething hotbed of right-wing propaganda, the New York Times, published an opinion piece that dares criticize FEMA, and praises Wal*Mart:

http://is.gd/QRvE0J

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 31, 2012 5:03 PM
But jk thinks:

Or -- and I kind of am making light of casualties:

Panicking cow kills Palestinian in Muslim feast

A panicking cow killed a Palestinian man who was trying to slaughter the beast on Saturday during the Muslim celebration of Eid al-Adha, a Gaza health official said.

[...]

In addition to the death, Gaza heath official Ashraf al-Kidra said that 150 other people were hospitalized in the Gaza Strip with knife wounds or other injuries caused by animals trying to break away.
Posted by: jk at October 31, 2012 6:37 PM
But jk thinks:

Compromise: I'll not make fun of the guy who died. But the 150 injured during ritual sacrifice....

Posted by: jk at October 31, 2012 6:50 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"... knife wounds or other injuries caused by animals trying to break away..."

Yes, yes, I know. But the way it's worded brings to mind this vision of dozens of four-legged, knife-wielding, ninja cows suddenly turning on their human captors. That has all the makings of a new movie on SyFy. I mean, c'mon, people! THEY DON'T EVEN HAVE OPPOSABLE THUMBS!

Stay tuned: PETA's support for "the right to arm bears" goes horribly awry...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 1, 2012 11:33 AM
But jk thinks:

Beware the feared Mooslim-Ninja-Cows!

Posted by: jk at November 1, 2012 4:52 PM

Obama's Solar Panel Cronyism: Move On, Nothing to See Here

"You better let him know that the WH wants to move Abound forward."
- Executive Director DOE Loan Programs, June 25, 2010

Composite video below from RevealingPolitics. Story based on DOE emails obtained by CompleteColorado.

But jk thinks:

Nice -- and further supported:

The new emails contradict claims by Obama and others in his administration that all decisions on the $20 billion DOE clean energy loans were made by career executives in the department.

Most recently, Obama told a Denver television news interviewer on Oct. 26, 2012, that the loan decisions are "decisions, by the way, that are made by the Department of Energy, they have nothing to do with politics."

Posted by: jk at October 31, 2012 5:35 PM

Halloween Medley

Wardrobe: check! ... Seasonally germane: check! ... Johnny Mercer tune: check! ... Telecaster: check!

Witchcraft

Bewitched, Bothered & Bewildered

Old Black Magic
These were all recorded near Halloween 2010.
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

I've always liked Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered. Didn't you do that with Brooke?

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 31, 2012 12:17 AM
But jk thinks:

Great song, innit? I will peek around but fear we never did that with Brooke -- and she has split to LA :(

Posted by: jk at October 31, 2012 2:47 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Looked int he archives and didn't see it, so maybe I'm just smokin' something. However, her voice would be well suited to that cut.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 31, 2012 3:08 PM

October 30, 2012

Deposit five 20s in the jar.

Imagine if Governor Romney's campaign had accepted donations from "Osama Bin Laden" from a Pakastani IP address:

A Jerusalem journalist writing for a conservative website reported Monday night that he was able to make two small financial contributions to President Barack Obama's re-election campaign in the name of the late terror mastermind Osama bin Laden.

Aaron Klein, writing for WorldNetDaily, said he successfully made campaign donations of $15 and $5 through a "proxy" service that masked his location and provided the Obama campaign website with a Pakistani Internet Protocol (IP) address instead.

Hat-tip: Insty

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 3:42 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Ed Morrissey makes a contribution as well, along with San Francisco Chronicle columnist Deborah Saunders:

Now ask yourself this: If George W. Bush were president, and the press didn't know what he did on the evening of the Benghazi attack, do you think there would be the same focus in the media? I think we know the answer.
Posted by: johngalt at October 30, 2012 4:06 PM

The Wages of Libya

One more excellent article about the Benghazi 9/11 terrorist attack and the growing evidence of an administration cover-up. Victor Davis Hanson, in inimitable prose, lists those whose careers will be ended by the affair:

Secretary Clinton
Ambassador Rice
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Martin Dempsey

And of course, without being mentioned, President Barack Obama.


Benghazigate Boiling Over

A Washington Times column by James S. Robbins, dated October 28 (Sunday) shortly after midnight EDT, describes the October 18 announcement by SECDEF Panetta: "Today I am very pleased to announce that President Obama will nominate General David Rodriguez to succeed General Carter Ham as commander of U.S. Africa Command."

After remarking on the unusual timing of the leadership change, the column then reports an October 26 blog post by someone who cites an anonymous "inside the military [source] that I trust entirely."

The information I heard today was that General Ham as head of Africom received the same e-mails the White House received requesting help/support as the attack was taking place. General Ham immediately had a rapid response unit ready and communicated to the Pentagon that he had a unit ready.

General Ham then received the order to stand down. His response was to screw it, he was going to help anyhow. Within 30 seconds to a minute after making the move to respond, his second in command apprehended General Ham and told him that he was now relieved of his command.

The story continues that now General Rodiguez would take General Ham's place as the head of Africom.

Later the same day, October 28, a pentagon spokesman wrote Mr. Robbins and said, "The insinuations in your story are flat wrong."

Monday, October 29, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, released a statement:

"The speculation that General Carter Ham is departing Africa Command (AFRICOM) due to events in Benghazi, Libya on 11 September 2012 is absolutely false. General Ham's departure is part of routine succession planning that has been on going since July. He continues to serve in AFRICOM with my complete confidence."

And yet, at 3:30 pm EDT that same day James Robbins reported General at center of Benghazi-gate controversy retiring

The questions concerning General Ham's role in the September 11 events continue to percolate. Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Utah Republican, said that General Ham told him during a visit to Libya that he had never been asked to provide military support for the Americans under attack in Benghazi. Former United States Ambassador to the U.N. John R, Bolton also mentioned Mr. Chaffetz's account, and contrasted it with Mr. Panetta's statement that General Ham had been part of the team that made the decision not to send in forces. "General Ham has now been characterized in two obviously conflicting ways," Mr. Bolton concluded. "Somebody ought to find out what he actually was saying on September the eleventh."

More here in a 5-hour old Hot-Air post:

A blistering critique of the administration by retired Commander in Chief of the US Pacific Fleet that ends, "for our leadership to have deliberately ignored the pleas for assistance is not only incomprehensible, it is un-American."

And the following conclusion about General Carter Ham's "retirement."

James Robbins notes that the White House insisted that Ham took part in the decision not to supply assistance to the consulate, but Ham told Rep. Jason Chaffetz that no one had asked him about it. Hams retirement could mean that the Pentagon had some sort of disciplinary action pending against him over the incident (also the subject of much speculation, but little in the way of direct sourcing), or it could have a different meaning altogether. It would be inappropriate for Ham to criticize his Commander in Chief while still in uniform, although he could go to Congress to report any perceived malfeasance at any time.

Emphasis mine.

But jk thinks:

Your favorite blog optimist imagines a worst case scenario. That's what optimists do, right?

Benghazigate is boiling over on ThreeSources, Fox News, Instapundit, and probably Michelle Malkin. It got zero minutes on any non-Fox Sunday show. And any mentions in MSM (I hate to use that term but must here) refer to how the Romney camp is politicizing the deaths of four Americans.

In short, the media firewall will hold through the election. If President Obama wins, however, this will erupt, Watergate-like prosecuted in a GOP House.

But instead of Gerald Rudolph Ford, we get...

Posted by: jk at October 30, 2012 3:28 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Yeah, but before GRF we had Spiro Theodore Agnew.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 30, 2012 3:37 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Fair analysis. Let me offer a flicker of hope:

9News Questions President Obama on Libya Attack

Posted by: johngalt at October 30, 2012 3:42 PM

Burn Baby Burn

Dagny and I took time out of our morning to vote early this year. I won't divulge our choice except to say we voted in furtherance of the effort to "burn this motherf*cker down."

It seems we are in good company:

Isn't early voting supposed to be Democrats' secret weapon, with which they run up the score, then dare the GOP to catch up on Election Day?
But jk thinks:

You're in great company. The lovely bride and I just returned from mailing the ballot + Starbucks® to read your post.

"Burn this motherf*cker down!" Kinda catchy!

Posted by: jk at October 30, 2012 1:30 PM
But Sugarchuck thinks:

Burn this motherf*cker down! Words to live by.

Posted by: Sugarchuck at October 30, 2012 5:50 PM
But johngalt thinks:

YES! Especially if you are The Dukes of Moral Hazard.

Posted by: johngalt at October 30, 2012 7:10 PM

A HOSS Stumbles

Yet another benefit to Liberty on the Rocks: I actually have some Facebook friends who are not economically illiterate. Interesting chatter about Gov. Chris Christie (Very Large HOSS - NJ)'s admonition against price gouging. Brother Bryan and a cohort of Liberty on the Rocks-ers were educating some folks. You'll be pleased to hear that I stayed out, except to recommend Russ Roberts's awesome The Price of Everything.

The forces of light are otherwise holding the banner of freedom aloft quite well without me. Today, Bryan adds a link to this excellent explanation from mises.org:

On October 27, as East Coast residents prepared for Hurricane Sandy, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie threatened "price gougers" with stiff penalties. As David Brown pointed out in Mises Daily on August 17, 2004, shortly after Hurricane Charley hit Florida, foul weather is when we need market prices the most. Capitalism needs more foul-weather friends, not fair-weather friends like Christie.
[...]
Let us postulate that a small Orlando drug store has ten bags of ice in stock that, prior to the storm, it had been selling for $4.39 a bag. Of this stock it could normally expect to sell one or two bags a day. In the wake of Hurricane Charley, however, ten local residents show up at the store over the course of a day to buy ice. Most want to buy more than one bag.

So what happens? If the price is kept at $4.39 a bag because the drugstore owner fears the wrath of State Attorney General Charlie Crist and the finger wagging of local news anchors, the first five people who want to buy ice might obtain the entire stock. The first person buys one bag, the second person buys four bags, the third buys two bags, the fourth buys two bags, and the fifth buys one bag. The last five people get no ice. Yet one or more of the last five applicants may need the ice more desperately than any of the first five.

But suppose the store owner is operating in an unhampered market. Realizing that many more people than usual will now demand ice, and also realizing that with supply lines temporarily severed it will be difficult or impossible to bring in new supplies of ice for at least several days, he resorts to the expedient of raising the price to, say, $15.39 a bag.

The piece is titled "Price Gouging Saves Lives in a Hurricane." Why does Governor Christie want to kill people?

But johngalt thinks:

Reports today chronicle altercations in the long gasoline lines in areas affected by hurricane Sandy. Not mentioned in the linked article but on a Fox News broadcast this morning, disputes typically arise when a customer attempts to "cut in line." There are lots of reasons why one might want or need to get gasoline without waiting for 2-plus hours. Unfortunately, Governor Christie and the "price gouging" police prevent the market solution to this problem with their iron boot of "fairness." In a free market, retailers could establish different prices at different pumps where the more expensive pumps would naturally (and sustainably) have shorter lines. Choose your wait time as a trade-off with cost. What could be more FAIR?

Posted by: johngalt at November 1, 2012 2:46 PM
But jk thinks:

Nicely done. I took the liberty of adding this -- with attribution of course -- to Bryan's thread on Facebook.

Posted by: jk at November 1, 2012 4:41 PM
But dagny thinks:

You guys are kidding right? If you follow jg's suggestion, rich people will have gas and poor people won't. The, "fair," way to decide who gets gas is to double the price for all and use the extra money to hire a, "gas procurement czar," who will decide who, "needs," the fuel the most.

Posted by: dagny at November 1, 2012 7:18 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

H.L. Mencken would remind us that Christie, and also my county executive, may believe what is true but ultimately are politicians, and will thus will say what is most politically expedient.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at November 3, 2012 1:49 PM

Tweet of the Day


Nanny State Posted by John Kranz at 11:24 AM | What do you think? [0]

Peyton Manning

On the web Posted by John Kranz at 11:10 AM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Stop laughing! It's not funny! Call out the National Guard because the Broncos are destroying the __________!

Posted by: johngalt at October 30, 2012 12:42 PM

October 29, 2012

Benghazigate Update

The Washington DC CBS affiliate reported today this statement by Senator John McCain on Face the Nation yesterday:

"Nobody died in Watergate. But this [handling of Ambassador Stevens' murder by terrorists] is either a massive cover-up or incompetence that is not acceptable service to the American people," McCain told "Face the Nation." "The American people may take that into consideration a week from Tuesday."

In Why did Obama choose to stand down in Benghazi? a Powerline blogger expounds on the General Petraeus revelation that "No one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need" as was posted here in a comment on Friday.

Voters, then, must assess the administrations handling of Benghazi with limited information. But we do know this: (1) the administration erred grievously by leaving open our mission in Benghazi while turning down requests for more security, (2) the administration made the wrong decision on the day of the attack by not bringing our military to bear, a decision consistent with Obamas instincts, and (3) the administration has not been forthcoming or honest in its discussion of Benghazi after the fact.

These facts, without more, present a serious indictment of Obama.


Started a Facebook fight today

Hell, in Colorado there's not much need to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. I have to keep busy somehow.

A bright but mad lefty former employee posted a "meme" picture of a Romney spox Kevin Hassett, looking a bit goofy and the text "You're Broke? I thought you owned a microwave."

This has been a trope of the left -- and possibly the right -- for some time. The right points out that "The Poor" tend to own houses and two cars and appliances and air conditioning, &c. I've always thought it a fair cop. Sure, your life can suck with air conditioning, but that is a pretty different definition of poverty than Mark Mathabane's Kaffir Boy, where he and his brothers compete for finding the most food at the city dump. I think the right is correct to bring this up.

The left, however, has a point. So? A microwave?

I went back, though, to fire a salvo that I find outside the tit-for-tat. Mark J Perry posts a look at "Access to the good life for low-income Americans comes from the miracle of the marketplace, especially manufacturing"

Perry shows a chart with food, clothing, cars, clothing and household furnishings as a share of disposable income. The free market has brought this from >40% in 1950 to <20% in 2012. Of course a microwave oven does not make you instantly happy and fulfilled (although they are pretty damn handy, especially for the single parent I'd presume).

Yet, my point is Prof Perry's graph. Freedom far more than doubled living standards between the Truman and Obama Administrations. You see a similar graph for the effects of anti-poverty spending for the same time. Well, similar except for slope -- that particular graph is flat as a low-carb pancake.

So "which do you choose," I brusquely interrogated, "more freedom or more government?"

Damn good question, jk...


Quote of the Day

"We're winning this race," senior political strategist David Axelrod insisted, citing early voting data. He warned: "You're gonna get spun and spun and spun in the next week," as if he were not spinning reporters himself, attacking the opposition vehemently. -- Joel Pollak
2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 5:26 PM | What do you think? [0]

Theory and Practice

I took a philosophy class at one of America's most famous public universities. The day after the first meeting I came upon the professor urinating into the flower bed at the side of the building. When I confronted him about his action, he turned to me, without stopping, and said:

"Keep in mind that the universe is in constant flux, nothing that occurs one moment has any relevance to anything else. Everything you believe, feel, or think is based on the false assumption that truth exists. Thus, you are free to do any action which brings you pleasure. That humanity feels restricted by morals is one of the funniest jokes I've ever heard."

So I beat the shit out of him and took his wallet.

Philosophy Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 5:18 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Why sir, that behavior is illegal! A society may function without morals, but take away its laws and the only thing left is ... people doing whatever they please!

The horror.

Posted by: johngalt at October 29, 2012 6:57 PM

Monetary Policy with Hops

I think the Austrians and the Chicago school can agree on the perfect, post storm currency:

1. Beer

"Buy a lot of it," says Trey Click, a magazine publisher who rode out last year's Hurricane Ike in Galveston, Texas. "It's one of the only things you can use for money in the aftermath." Need your neighbor to help you clear trees out of your yard? A case of Bud is a better motivator than a $20 bill when all the stores are boarded up.

All the best to our Keystone & Empire State ThreeSourcers -- stay safe and dry, y'all!

Monetary Policy Posted by John Kranz at 12:23 PM | What do you think? [4]
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Back in the '70s when I was planning on how to "Profit From" Harry Browne's "Monetary Crisis" we all thought cases of cigarettes would make the best trade goods, but the fall in smoking has shifted the equation, I guess. While beer is great for hurricanes, for long term EOTWAWKI scenarios I would go with whiskey and vodka in glass bottles.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 29, 2012 5:04 PM
But dagny thinks:

There is an EOTWAWKI Heinlein novel, Farnham's Freehold I think, where the protangonists are willing to accept books in trade.

Posted by: dagny at October 29, 2012 6:44 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Another good currency would be bullets. Or, in the case of The Road Warrior - gasoline and shotgun shells.

Posted by: johngalt at October 29, 2012 6:54 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Smug, sanctimonious Joss Wheedon videos - not so much.

Posted by: johngalt at October 29, 2012 6:59 PM

Wheedon "endorses" Romney

Hey, lookie here Wheedon fans!

But jk thinks:

The man who brought us "Firefly..."

Posted by: jk at October 29, 2012 12:34 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

However, his pronunciation of "Ann" Rand shows he doesn't really understand.

Everybody understands Mickey Mouse. Few understand Hermann Hesse. Only a handful understood Albert Einstein. And nobody understood Emperor Norton.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 29, 2012 5:13 PM
But Terri thinks:

The ultimate in government help: Reavers, or do I mean zombies?

Posted by: Terri at October 31, 2012 10:37 AM
But dagny thinks:

What a great metaphor Terri: Reavers as the unintended consequences of government help of all kinds.

I find it hard to believe that this comes from the man who brought us Mal Reynolds, "We were on the losing side, still not convinced it was the wrong one."

Posted by: dagny at October 31, 2012 11:33 AM

October 27, 2012

Great Political Ad!

How about a little partisan hackery, Scarecrow?

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 11:29 AM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Great ad. But isn't the president forgetting to warn of the Romney zombie apocalypse? [next post]

Posted by: johngalt at October 29, 2012 12:25 PM

October 26, 2012

Tyrone Woods, American Hero

Posted without comment:

Hat-tip: Ed Driscoll @ Instapundit

But johngalt thinks:

"Let's Roll."

Here's more detail on the CIA orders to "stand down."

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 6:50 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Bill Kristol cites CIA spokesman, Petraeus: "No one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need; claims to the contrary are simply inaccurate." Kristol says it could only have been a presidential decision.

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 6:59 PM

QOTD II

If you've spent much time in hospitals, you know that they are battlegrounds for the war between the medicinal scents and various human odors. My [Hotel] room smells a bit like David Axelrod these days, by which I mean it has the vague scent of urine, desperation, and failure to it, damped down by too little Lysol. -- Jonah Goldberg [subscribe]

Bonus Jonah link: Six college pranks we wish we'd thought of


Quote of the Day

Exactly what Bob Dylan was warning about in "Subterranean Homesick Blues" -- Camille Paglia, describing her dissatisfaction with President Obama (13:15)
Solid Gold, good people, book 15 minutes and watch this edition of Instavision coast to coast.

Bonus Link: The Subterranean Homesick Blues Google Ad

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 1:51 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Lots to like. We'd agree on much, she and I. I'll skip talking about our agreements and see if you noticed the same deficiency I did: Obamacare is "Stalinist" but the Democratic party needs to be remade, because it is not genuinely "Progressive." In my understanding of the world those two terms are synonymous, not alternatives. Lots of gray area, I know, but Progressivism is at its core egalitarian, no?

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 4:40 PM

Meanwhile, on Facebook

I couldn't keep this all to myself:

I realize I may have shortened telemeters on my "cute kid" gene, but the celebration of abdicating reason frightens me.

JUST ADDED: "Little ones are often reliable judges of character."

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 1:22 PM | What do you think? [6]
But Steve D thinks:

I hope they are only kidding.

Posted by: Steve D at October 26, 2012 1:35 PM
But jk thinks:

Nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnno. They're certainly not kidding. They are doing the parent/cute kid thing and I'm trying to reverse roles and envision what I might say. And brace myself for blog parents to tell me I'm taking it too seriously.

But there is no real concern with following the lead of a two year old who cannot pronounce the candidates' names.

Posted by: jk at October 26, 2012 2:15 PM
But johngalt thinks:

In their defense, I'm sure they would say they chose The Big Zero first (using their rational reasoning emotions) and pretending the two-year old's approval is validative is just an adorable helping of cute fun. In reality the two-year old is a bald, wingless parrot. (I should know - my children say "Boo, Barack Obama!" and "We don't hate Obama, we only hate his ideas" and "My daddy shook hands with Mitt Romney!")

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 3:16 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Related: I went out for lunch today, here in Boulder. The couple in the buffet line behind me - Rachel Maddow [lookalike] and an nondescript metrosexual - were chatting about the election: "I saw a report that if the rest of the world were able to vote in our election, Obama would win in a landslide." There was also discussion of "apology tour" and foreign policy.

I really wanted to engage them but knew my chances of breaking through the protein coat of their oneworldview in less than 11 days is too close to zero. My point is, they really do think they have reasons to prefer their and the president's worldview, and those reasons are strong enough in their minds to outweigh the empirical evidence of what they are doing to American prosperity.

I admire your pithy attempt to counsel reason to the baby-talk demographic. Clearly though, they ignored you. How about this:

"If your dear neice is comfortable enough to be so charming because of her Chinese made footie pajamas and a home heated with natural gas from fracking and lighted by cheap electricity from Wyoming coal, perhaps you should explain to her that Bok Owama's policies will "necessarily" require mommy and daddy to spend her Kwanza present money on more expensive "energy of the future." At least, that is, whenever the sun shines or the wind blows. Or won't mommy and daddy understand that until the power quits and the higher bills arrive in the mailbox?"

It's possible that would get a response.

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 4:16 PM
But jk thinks:

I don't thihk that would get "3 Likes..."

Posted by: jk at October 26, 2012 4:47 PM
But Steve D thinks:

'I saw a report that if the rest of the world were able to vote in our election, Obama would win in a landslide.'

But if Poland was the only country voting in our election, Obama would lose in a landslide.

Posted by: Steve D at October 29, 2012 11:09 AM

October 25, 2012

Joda Vida Loco

Colorado has been in the national news again for the past weeks, and for another horrific reason. Ten year-old Jessica Ridgeway disappeared on her way to school October 5th and was found dead some days later. I hung on every bit of news with an uneasy combination of need to know, fear, and a simmering rage and hatred for the unhuman monster who could perpetrate such a crime. I was not surprised to learn that the confessed suspect is a maladjusted male who was teased mercilessly by classmates, including girls, and with bizarre interests such as medical examination and mortuary science. I was surprised to learn that he is but 17 years old himself.

I haven't written anything about this before now since I'm confident my thoughts and feelings are universal, particularly amongst parents. But today I want to cite a coincidence that I think is at least a partial clue into the devolution of a human mind to the level we witness here. Last weekend, while harvesting the season's final hay crop, I found a book discarded along the county road that passes our farm. I picked it up. I was mildly taken aback by the doodled word-cloud that covered the outside in half-inch tall red letters:

FEAR, PAIN, SICK BOY, Tourtcher, MADDNE$$, Die By The Sword, DEATH, suicide, I For AN Eye, Blood For Blood, F*** The World, Vengeance I Demand, War, MEth, F*** Sleep, Murder, CRip, KillER, No Mercy, Lust, NO $URENDER, HATE, Rage, REtROBution.
My Hunger, LiES, TRUE Love (garbled), -> Killa, WASTED Time, TRust no Bitch, Kill All that Snitch, F*** The PiG$, ANti Government!, Anti ChRISt, Anti All Realigion.
104% Blood BANG 104% the Punnisher. Demon.
Joda Vida Loco.

I have no idea whose this is, or how it got on the side of my road. But it seems obvious to me it is a school-aged rant. I remember my high school years. It wasn't easy trying to fit in and be myself all at the same time, particularly when I didn't even really know how to "be myself" or who I was. I scribbled kill this, kill that. But this seems beyond anything I ever thought or felt. It brings my constantly integrating mind back to one thing: The crippling of young minds.

Teach your children. Teach them well.


Ex-Sports Brands

For those who forgot -- and I confess I did:

The World Series looks good. The NFL has recovered from a (sorry, Packers' Fans) minor kerfuffle. I s'pect most people whose income does not derive from hockey are getting by just fine.

And maybe y'all are bored with my Lance Armstrong sycophantsy, but cui bono? Lance has been stripped of his historic and heroic accomplishment. Now the sport looks clean? I submit that the Armstrong fans are cheesed off that seven wins can be airbrushed away without due process. Are the others happy? Does any of this accrue to the integrity of cycling or does it make it seem even more a childish pursuit.

As one who loves each of these sports, it hurts to see their being thrown away.

Sports Posted by John Kranz at 6:14 PM | What do you think? [0]

Here's your daily ThreeSources/CAP Video!

It's not every day that I embed a video from the überleft Center for American Progress. And, to be fair, I'll probably hop in the shower a little early tonight.

But this link comes from a good friend of this blog.

This video is fantastic, but not for the reasons that the Center for American Progress thinks. The clear point of the video is to blame the difference between the projected surplus and the actual deficit as being Bush's fault. At the end of the video it plugs the CAP solution for a "balanced approach to deficit reduction." However, if you actually look at the conclusions of the video, you realize that if we eliminated all of the increased spending done by Bush and Obama over the last 12 years, the deficit would be eliminated. No "balanced approach" necessary.

But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Say, oh keeper of the 3src jk--a weird thing happens sometimes, I come here and the videos are scrambled so that they appear on different posts. That is no big deal, but earlier American Crossroads came up on this post--that was hilarious.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 25, 2012 5:51 PM
But jk thinks:

Clearly dirty trickery from Karl Rove. He's used Koch money to buy up the Internet.

Posted by: jk at October 25, 2012 6:13 PM
But Paulista thinks:

Liberals once again show that they do not believe in property rights. If a government is running a surplus in the trillions, there should be a tax cut.

Also, I note the sharper spending starting with Obama's presidency. The narrator does notice it.

Posted by: Paulista at October 26, 2012 11:36 PM

Maybe we should talk about Big Bird

I whined. The Obama campaign and my Fiendish Facebook Friends (FFF) were all talking about Big Bird when I thought that a terrorist attack on US soil on the anniversary of 9/11 and a subsequent cover-up was more important. And, yeah, I was right.

But. I always hope to engage people on the size and scope of government. Big Bird is illustrative.

How will we ever cut anything? For months, the spending party asks "What will you cut?" "You have to tell us what you will cut!" Poor Governor Romney says "Big Bird."

Poor yellow fella:

Far from being a pauper, Sesame Workshop, the company that produces the beloved children's television program that has become an unlikely point of partisan bickering in the presidential campaign, has put away more than $100 million in investments, including more than $20 million in hedge funds and $9.7 million in a private equity fund.

PBS, the partially publicly funded network that broadcasts "Sesame Street" and its marquee character Big Bird, has come under fire from Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who says the government cannot afford to support it anymore. President Obama has leapt to Big Bird's defense on the stump and in campaign ads.

The FFF were quick to point out that it was a small amount of money, by government standards. And the discussion is fraught with peril, as the show is both popular and contributes to public good / general welfare.

Yet, if we cannot yank some subsidies from this avian one percenter, in a market very well served by private competition, all hope is lost.

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 1:34 PM | What do you think? [4]
But johngalt thinks:

By all means taxpayers, keep borrowing money from China and give it to Sesame Street so they can grow their nest egg to $200 million. But in the process you might ask yourself, "Why is a non-profit so profitable?" Their profit margin is bigger than Exxon-Mobil's!

Posted by: johngalt at October 25, 2012 2:33 PM
But jk thinks:

Great point on XOM but [Internecine alert!] I don't care for the Governor's preferred locution of "borrowing money from China to pay for . . . " I'm rather sensitive about his China-bashing race to the bottom on trade. And I find from whom we borrow irrelevant against on which we spend.

Our dear friends in China make lovely bankers and swell trading partners. It is we who suck as borrowers and ungrateful buyers.

Posted by: jk at October 25, 2012 3:35 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Fair cop, but can we agree that it is a powerful metaphor? And if it helps make the end of Obamacare possible [by defeating the incumbent president's reelection bid] isn't it worth it?

As for whether he keeps this campaign promise, I can live with a President Romney "reducing American borrowing from China" in the sense that it will require a reduction in goverment spending.

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 3:39 PM
But jk thinks:

Oh yeah. It's the general, and the blog pragmatist is offering wide latitude to the Governor and all his supporters.

"Good populism" it may be, but I was surprised to see it on ThreeSources.

Posted by: jk at October 27, 2012 10:34 AM

Coffeehousin'

Coffeehouse

Fruits of My Labor

"With Sugarchuck and my lovely Goddaughter, Mollie"

Live at the Coffeehouse dot Com

Did I hear somebody say "More Mollie!!" Oh, yeah.

But jk thinks:

*Ahem*

Since National had applied for a patent on the single cone (US patent #1,808,756), Dopyera had to develop an alternative design, which he did by inverting the cone so that rather than having the strings rest on the apex of the cone as the National method did, they rested on a cast aluminum spider that had eight legs sitting on the perimeter of the downward-pointing cone (US patent #1,896,484).

I thought it was pretty clear that the cone was inverted and not the strings resting on the Apex, but maybe it's hard to see in the video...

Hahahahhaha!

Posted by: jk at October 25, 2012 4:01 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Ah, I thought it was metal.

Play me a song, Curtis Lowe, Curtis Lowe
I got your drinkin' money, tune up your Dobro.

I always loved that tune.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 25, 2012 4:02 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Waited a while for SC to come to my defense but maybe it ain't happening. Are you saying Dobro made a steel body model too?

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 3:18 PM
But jk thinks:
In the following years both Dobro and National built a wide variety of metal- and wood-bodied single-cone guitars...
This instrument actually says "Dobro" on the headstock. Sorry, man, I think the President may send Seals for you first... Posted by: jk at October 26, 2012 3:39 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Well I did leave myself a weasel word: "believe."

And if you want the president to send troops to protect you don't yell "terrorists!" yell "contraception!"

Posted by: johngalt at October 26, 2012 6:54 PM
But Sugarchuck thinks:

Sorry to be so late to the table. JK is correct; when we were kids the term "dobro" was a generic reference to any guitar, metal or wood, that had a resonator. One often heard guitars referred to as National dobros. A few years ago Gibson bought Dobro and started suing the pants off of anyone that used the term "dobro" unless it was used specifically in relation to Gibson products so the new generic term is resophonic guitar. Maybe they deserved the SWAT team after all.

JK is also correct on the guitar's provenance. He bought it sometime in the late 70's and I got it from him in the early 80's, after cracking the headstock. I broke it then bought it. Mollie broke the headstock completely off when she was 2, so at some point I guess she'll have to buy it from me.

Posted by: Sugarchuck at October 26, 2012 10:27 PM

October 24, 2012

Good Line!

In the "War on Poverty," poverty is winning!

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan is telling voters in Ohio that poverty is winning in the war on poverty.

In a speech Wednesday, Ryan said he and running mate Mitt Romney would work to help poor people climb out of poverty and help middle-class workers feel they are on stronger financial ground. He says all Americans should have the opportunity to achieve their full potential, no matter their background.

Ryan also criticized existing anti-poverty programs that he says are not working. He says that for all the money spent on such programs, the government could give each poor person a check for $22,000.

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 4:21 PM | What do you think? [0]

Oh Yeah!

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 3:55 PM | What do you think? [0]

Otequay of the Ayday

Huh?

"Wasting your vote is voting for somebody that you don't believe in," an impassioned Johnson said. "That's wasting your vote. I'm asking everybody here, I'm asking everybody watching this nationwide to waste your vote on me."

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson, during a debate with three other snowballs in Chicago yesterday.


Undecided...

I was going to send in my ballot, but have decided to wait to see what happens with the big 25-year-old divorce case that Gov. Romney testified in -- that could blow this whole thing wide open...

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 12:58 PM | What do you think? [0]

Quote of the Day

The President says he'll use community colleges to train another two million workers "for good jobs that actually exist," perhaps to distinguish these from the jobs he said the 2009 stimulus would create but actually didn't. -- WSJ Ed Page
2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 12:01 PM | What do you think? [0]

October 23, 2012

Fact Check of the Day

I have to admit, these are pretty fun when they roll your way.

Math. Is. Hard.

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 4:32 PM | What do you think? [2]
But johngalt thinks:

Uhhhh...RITH-ma-tick.

Posted by: johngalt at October 23, 2012 5:31 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Well, since a trillion dollars is now the new unit of importance being of by a few million jobs here or there is just a rounding error in Bizarro FedGov World!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 23, 2012 5:44 PM

Theme Song for Obama's Last Days

I was thinking about a proper theme song for Election Night, and it came to me! I know these guys have been a huge success for over 35 years and Brian Johnson did a fine job, but for me the only Real Thing was the few dazzling years when Bon Scott brought his inimitable writing and style.

Play it on Nov. 6 and raise a glass to the man. "Skål", brother!

But johngalt thinks:

Kept in the proper perspective, it couldn't hurt to be prepared in advance with a playlist.

Johnny Winter - 'Be Careful With a Fool'

Wherein even a fool in love eventually sees the light.

Posted by: johngalt at October 23, 2012 4:04 PM
But johngalt thinks:

The Doors - 'When the Music's Over'

Posted by: johngalt at October 23, 2012 5:25 PM
But jk thinks:

The hubris is getting a little out of hand. But I'd have this handy.

Posted by: jk at October 23, 2012 5:52 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Playlist ready! Set your iPhone or other device to STUN!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 23, 2012 8:07 PM
But jk thinks:

Blog buddy sc sends a link to the Allman Brothers' Whipping Post.

Don't know if it was part of this thread or just sharing a little "Bro Duane," but if we lose...

Posted by: jk at October 24, 2012 12:15 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Good! That one fits my feeling of the last four years. Here's hoping we may play the other songs instead, and your classic rejoinder is a must-play in that case. Kudos for linking the original artist.

Toward that end, one more addition. Not the original, this is an excellent cover of a well traveled Bob Seger tune, but the photo montage is a must-see.

Posted by: johngalt at October 24, 2012 2:14 PM

Clear the Bench Colorado

Impressive talk at last night's Liberty on the Rocks. Matt Arnold of Clear The Bench Colorado spoke on the importance of the Colorado Judiciary, some of the peculiarities of its structure, and -- most importantly -- how to make informed votes on retentions.

Having an historic (I just love using an as a article) opportunity in 2010 to "clear the bench" with four Colorado Supreme Court Justices up for retention, Arnold launched the site and organization to provide some hard to find anti-incumbent information. Two problematic judges were removed.

Arnold kept the site to evaluate judges up for retention and it is valuable. I don't think that I am what you'd call a disinterested voter, but I have seldom voted for judges. I kept to the Bryan Caplan theory of allowing more informed voters to choose. Yet last night, I learned of the incumbency racket. I did not ask the speaker about this, but suspect that the correct uniformed vote is to vote 'no' to balance the incumbency bias.

Of course, the better plan is to visit http://www.clearthebenchcolorado.org/ and become informed.

SIDE NOTE: One of the many benefits of Liberty on the Rocks has been seeing the important and substantive work being done for liberty by regular folk. Arnold is an impressive man: retired Army Captain, current reservist, a bright and commanding speaker. I imagine he could succeed at most things. Yet, he had no specific training for this. He saw a need and an important opportunity. (And, yes, there is a donate button when you're done...)

Colorado Posted by John Kranz at 11:23 AM | What do you think? [1]
But Terri thinks:

Thanks for the recap and website. After being in a bar for the Biden debate, I didn't want to go out for this one.

Posted by: Terri at October 23, 2012 3:45 PM

October 22, 2012

Advising Romney In the Final Debate

Shortly after the second presidential debate, The Refugee reflected on the Benghazi moment. He postulated that if Chris Christie had been on stage, Christie's prosecutorial instincts would have kicked in and would have shredded Obama in his lie. That's not a criticism of Romney, since Romney is not a prosecutor. The point is, the debate on foreign policy should be approached like a prosecution of the president.

Tonight's debate holds a huge advantage for Romney: he has no foreign policy record to defend and the president does. That means that he can put the president on the defense from the get-go and keep him there. Romney does need to articulate enough of a vision (without platitudes) to reach a threshold of acceptability. However, it will be difficult for Obama to attack him without sounding like the same old scare-tactics that are no longer working.

Romney's stategy in the first debate was to keep it fact-based. Everytime he uses facts and figures, he scores points. If he does that skillfully tonight, it could be a big night for the challenger.

BONUS: If Obama finds a way to work the 47% comment into the discussion, Romney should say, "Don't forget, Mr. President, 47% of the people didn't vote for you in the last election."

2012 Election Posted by Boulder Refugee at 3:22 PM | What do you think? [0]

Hate to see the low ground

Jake Tapper -- likely the least "in the bag" journalist for the Obama Administration -- claims that the President will have the high ground when the subject of the Benghazi attacks comes up tonight (between Big Bird and Contraception).

"The Romney campaign had the high ground on this issue for weeks. They lost that high ground at the second debate by alleging, suggesting the Obama administration had misled the American public on Benghazi," says Josh Rogin, of Foreign Policy's The Cable.

"It took the president 14 days before he called the attack on the embassy an act of terror," Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said at that debate. Obama had in fact called it an act of terror the day after the attack, though the administration spent the next two weeks avoiding the term terror, blaming the attack on an anti-Muslim video and claiming some of it was spontaneous.

Still, "there's no real evidence that they misled, it's possible they were just wrong. And President Obama seized on that and called that offensive and...now the president has regained the moral high authority on this issue."


We're not necessarily lying -- we could be simply stoopid!

But johngalt thinks:

What was it supporters were saying about a potential Obama presidency? Worldly, intelligent and nuanced - things like that?

It is one thing for government officials to miss warnings that the consulate attack was imminent - like the reported explosion that blew a hole in the consulate wall in August - or for the Administration to misread and disregard those warnings. But why were security forces so few and so poorly armed? Why were repeated requests for help summarily dismissed? An internet rumor suggests it was part of a planned "October Surprise" and that Ambassador Stevens was to be kidnapped, not murdered.

The original report surmised that the coup de grace would be a daring rescue operation to free the American ambassador, but more recent speculation suggests a trade of Ambassador Stevens for the Blind Sheik.

At least as plausible as the "angry movie reviewers" meme. No evidence though.

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2012 3:09 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The liberal press seems to have a story line today that Romney should lay off of Benghazi for his own good. That makes The Refugee think that the plea is for Obama's good.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 22, 2012 3:20 PM

We cut down that tall tulip!

I realize there is a nonzero probability that Lance Armstrong is guilty. But there is no evidence after decades of trying. After more than 500 surprise blood tests.

But the facts be damned. We're not going to let his heroic life stand.

GENEVA--Lance Armstrong was officially stripped of his titles Monday by cycling's governing body in the latest chapter in the doping allegations against the seven times Tour de France champion.

Armstrong gave up fighting these Joverts so he could continue with his life. I don't plan to watch the Tour next year, I am giving up, too.

Sports Posted by John Kranz at 12:15 PM | What do you think? [2]
But Sugarchuck thinks:

I'd like to see the results of our second and third runner's up.i wonder how far down the roster they have to go to find a clean winner.

Posted by: Sugarchuck at October 22, 2012 4:03 PM
But jk thinks:

Your point is taken, but it presupposes the existence an objective test. To the US Anti-Doping Agency (not an Ayn Rand fiction) you're guilty when you tire of fighting. Nobody is ever innocent.

Posted by: jk at October 22, 2012 5:45 PM

On Da Rocks!

Early presentation tonight so that we can watch Monday Night Football NCLS Game Seven the debates.

Exciting update for Monday's happy hour!

Please plan to arrive as close to 6:00pm as possible. Matt Arnold will start his presentation shortly after 6pm because Miller's has offered to show the debates on their TVs live at 7:00! See you at Millers Down Under (the lower floor of Miller's Grille) on Monday at 6pm!

Posted by John Kranz at 11:15 AM | What do you think? [0]

October 21, 2012

Didn't see that one coming

Gov. Romney gets the coverted LiLo endorsement:

Lindsay Lohan came out in support of Mitt Romney yesterday.

While most would, at first glance, write this off as gossip, it's the latest instance of an evolving trend that jeopardizes President Obama's chance at winning the White House.

Lohan, by all accounts, is a typical low-information voter. And low information voters, like it or not, will decide this election.


Bryan Caplan, call your office...

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 12:45 PM | What do you think? [0]

October 20, 2012

Soi Disant -- or is that soy disant -- free people

We sure allow ourselves to be bullied by the Feds on food. Baylen J. Linnekin, Executive Director of Keep Food Legal, takes to Reason to list Ten Federal Food-Policy Issues Obama and Romney Should Discuss.

All ten are deeply depressing reminders of what we've given away. The Federal government performs paramilitary raids on raw milk, approves brand logos and packaging, gives (traditionally very bad) advice on nutrition, &c.

Trade all ten for the Tenth Amendment, good people.

Food and Wine Posted by John Kranz at 11:24 AM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:
"I've worked hard for every lump of coal I've taken out of the ground. And what do I have to show for it? I can't set my prices. I can't choose to whom I sell my product. The government takes what it wants, and taxes what it leaves behind!"

-Ken Dannager, Dannager Coal, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 (the movie)

It hasn't been as sudden or as obvious as 'Directive 10-289' but we are most of the way there, nonetheless.

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2012 2:45 PM

October 19, 2012

The 96.6 percent

Gallup study with a massive sample size that gives a small margin of error "estimates" (?) that "3.4 percent of American adults identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender" (article).

Given that the "approach measures broad self-identity, and does not measure sexual or other behavior, either past or present[.]" and that some folks may not want to talk about it, even anonymously, we can't say this is the exact percentage of "LGBT" people in the USA, but still...3.4 percent?

What percentage of series television show characters are now "gay?" >3.4 percent! How much news media coverage does "LGBT" get?

Since I asked, I'll tell you. Way more than is justified by any rational standard. So much, another Gallup survey found 35 percent of respondents guessed that more than 25 percent of the population are "gay or lesbian."

People's sex lives are their own private business, which is why I'm sick of celebrities "coming out." Here's some advice for anyone agnozing over whether to make a public pronouncement of their LGBTness: I don't CARE, one way or the other. It's certainly nothing to be especially "proud' of, one way or the other. But holy freakin' cow, 40 years of media propoganda about the glories of homosex seem to have taken root.

As to why the unrelenting pro-gay drumbeat? A Marxist-Satanist-Illuminati Worldwide Conspiracy to Sap and Impurify All of Our Precious Bodily Fluids:

Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 4:22 PM | What do you think? [0]

Quote of the Day

But the single biggest metaphorical crotch-kick of the night came from great-grandson Al Smith IV, who told President Obama, "We recognize that you have some challenges this year. It's never good when your opponent has produced more sons than you have jobs." -- via Jim Geraghty [video]
But jk thinks:

I hope this doesn't get out, the President is absolutely charming here.

Posted by: jk at October 19, 2012 10:48 AM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

You are so right, brother jk. It's really the most I've ever liked the guy. If I didn't think he was ruining the country with his policies I'd vote for him...

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 19, 2012 5:26 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Wow, not my reaction at all. I thought he was likeable to an average degree but no more. His jokes were bare minimum grade funny. His demeanor was depressed. I viewed him as a pathetic character worthy of pity. I actually felt sorry for him - trying to campaign on his record is its own form of Sissyphean undertaking.

Mitt Romney, on the other hand, was confident, hilariously funny and - absolutely charming. His wit was mercilessly biting. "In the spririt of Sesame Street, the Obama Administration is brought to you by the letter "O" and the number "16 trillion." OUCH!

It was reported that after the speeches everyone wanted to meet Mitt, even the liberals.

Posted by: johngalt at October 19, 2012 6:54 PM
But jk thinks:

Let me try an olive branch... each showed an unexpected side. Romney was surprisingly biting. I, too, dug several of the lines but was pretty surprised at their ferocity. Plus, Gov. Romney's close was solid gold. I'd buy all the TV time in Ohio and run that as an ad.

Where one expected nice Romney and got fierce Romney, I was expecting fierce-bordering-on-petty Obama. A little self-effacing humor, however, really serves the President well. Had he mastered that as well as he does it here, he would be up 20 points in the polls.

Posted by: jk at October 19, 2012 7:30 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Now I have watched Romney and I agree he was very strong indeed.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 19, 2012 9:22 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I told him so in person Saturday night but I want to note for the record that I agree with jk's assessment of the nuances of the two men's presentations. And the president was self-effacing, to a point. But I think I've seen that from him before, at least in deference to Michele if none else. I just don't think whatever charm he might have displayed outweighed the other characteristics I listed above.

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2012 2:35 PM

October 18, 2012

"Fiery" Obama lost Debate 2

Blog brother jk called it a "trial to be endured" and my very own dear dagny said she has no idea what I am smoking, but the boys at IBD's editorial page (and presumably whatever women they have in their binders) have my back. I called it "95% awesome" and they give the blow by blow here. Here is a taste:

As he had done previously, Romney let the numbers highlight Obama's failure.

"We don't have to settle for gasoline at four bucks," he said. "We don't have to settle for unemployment at a chronically high level. We don't have to settle for 47 million people on food stamps. We don't have to settle for 50% of kids coming out of college not able to get work. We don't have to settle for 23 million people struggling to find a good job."

"Fiery" Obama had no retorts.

Yes, I understand we're talking "objectively" here and that perceptions can be spun. So does IBD, closing with "unfortunately, the media spin has only just begun."

But Terri thinks:

I completely appreciate his attempt to change what people think about when they hear 47%. That move was awesome.

Posted by: Terri at October 18, 2012 3:55 PM
But jk thinks:

I did not mean to imply that I thought the Governor did not do well. Just that I do not enjoy the debates.

The discussion is rarely cerebral, the conditions always favor the statists, and the stakes are high. GHWB looked at his watch -- clearly unfit for the Presidency! I've got a binder full of such examples.

Posted by: jk at October 18, 2012 7:06 PM
But jk thinks:

I'll see your IBD and raise you Jay Norldinger! He makes me sound cheerful.

Posted by: jk at October 18, 2012 7:18 PM
But dagny thinks:

Speaking of Binders, will someone please explain to me what is so inappropriate about Gov. Romney's binder comment??? Clearly noone shrunk women down and put them in binders so what he actually received was binders full of resumes. Before the days of email, how else would one acquire requested resumes? Was it not appropriate for him to say, "my staff does not have enough diversity, can someone please provide me with resumes from qualified female applicants?"

Posted by: dagny at October 18, 2012 7:21 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Perhaps they're trying to imply, even subconsciously, that "binders" are like the "chains" that Biden talked about.

Posted by: johngalt at October 19, 2012 4:03 PM
But jk thinks:

I'd give the last word to our favorite XX-chromosomed blog friend at Ruminants.

Posted by: jk at October 19, 2012 7:41 PM

Put a Dollar in the Jar, 'Lizbeth

Elizabeth Price Foley wonders about the First Lady's behavior. "One of the rules of decorum in the debate was that applause was not permitted (for obvious reasons). Can you imagine how the MSM would excoriate Ann Romney if she had done something so rude and inappropriate?"

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 2:28 PM | What do you think? [0]

Coffeehousin'

Coffeehouse

Come Together

"With Sugarchuck and my lovely Goddaughter, Mollie"

Live at the Coffeehouse dot Com

But johngalt thinks:

Whoa yeah, good and funky!

Posted by: johngalt at October 18, 2012 2:29 PM
But Terri thinks:

That girl was made for singing the blues!!! Here's hoping her life isn't! Beautiful.

Posted by: Terri at October 18, 2012 3:56 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Wha? Hearing an obviously sweet young lady sing lead on these lyrics provides just the right amount of cognitive dissonance to make it memorable.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 19, 2012 4:21 PM

October 17, 2012

Romney v Obama 2.0

If you missed Tuesday's second Presidential Debate there is reason for regret. The mutual beligerance was spectacular. At one point, as they stood within arms reach of each other, I could imagine the president taking a poke at the ever needling challenger from Massachusetts. He didn't. But the feeling persisted. Post-debate analysis informed me that "female voters are turned off by such combativeness." Tough luck. The guy writing to you right now loved it.

I thought Mitt made great points with broad appeal - yes, to women too - and the president was left to repeat a few threadbare attacks. When a question on Libya was asked I started jumping and cheering. President Obama claimed to have called the murder of Chris Stevens et. al. "an act of terror" as early as the next day. Having his prey right where he wanted him... exposed for concocting a fanciful story about Islam bashing movie trailers and spontaneous civil outrage in the Arab street, all Mitt Romney needed to do was ask, "Why then did your UN Ambassador make the Sunday show circuit to insist that it was NOT a terrorist act? Why did you, yourself, tell David Letterman and Joy Behar and the entire UN General Assembly that aforementioned movie trailer story? But instead, Mitt tried to catch Obama in a lie, stating that President Obama took a full 14 days to refer to the consulate assault as a "terrorist attack." S.E. Cupp explains the magnitude of the misfire:

And the real disappointment lies not in the fact that Romney lost a point in the debate or that Obama scored big among his supporters. Its that Romneys failed attempt at putting Obama in the hot seat did considerable damage to the bigger war the war for truth. Those of us who have been screaming for more accountability on Libya and demanding answers were actually winning. We were, albeit slowly, holding feet to the fire and finally getting those answers we deserved. But because of Romneys mishap, some of that progress has been stolen back. For the time being at least, the narrative is no longer that we need answers on Libya, but that Romney needs a fact-checker. That is a sobering disappointment.

It seems that even I know more about Benghazigate than Romney does. Somebody make him do some seat-time with Fox News Channel.

But jk thinks:

Glad one of us enjoyed it. You can sign me up for more of the Broncos - Raiders debates (and even then, I was 3/4 through before actually admitting that Gov. Romney was doing well).

The President offers free stuff paid for by rich people payingtheirfairshare: pretty appealing to a bunch of "undecideds." The Governor, bless his pea-pickin' little heart, responds not with freedom but with a different plan to help the middle class.

No, these are trials to be endured, I haven't enjoyed one since Bush - Gore.

You left out, methinks, the big deal. Poised to pounce on Benghazi -- moderator Candy Crowley interrupts with an unfactual fact check. It would have been inappropriate even if true.

Memo to 2016 nominee: no media moderated debates.

Posted by: jk at October 17, 2012 8:48 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Yes, "our" guy promised some populist bullcrap. I even Tweeted on one of them. But a flawed system with a flawed electorate do not besmirch the pragmatic politician who manipulates them to win election. I give him the benefit of the doubt on "keeping China honest" because I believe he is a free-trader at heart.

Once he is elected, President Romney will eliminate Commerce, Energy, Education, HUD and Labor, will privatize Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, return student loans to private lenders, tie foreign aid to business development and require every nation hosting American military forces to pay a reimbursement for the honor. Or at least, when we lobby for those things, we'll at least get a hearing.

Posted by: johngalt at October 17, 2012 11:38 AM
But dagny thinks:

No, I have no idea what jg is smoking.

Posted by: dagny at October 17, 2012 12:16 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Mitt must be saying something to convince someone he intends to dismantle the entitlement state. (Or maybe community organizers are spreading vicious rumors of self-reliance and spending cuts by Governor Romney.) Threats to assassinate him exploded on Twitter after the debate.

Posted by: johngalt at October 17, 2012 12:43 PM
But johngalt thinks:

By the way, after sleeping on it I realized I beat the dog for fixing dinner and setting the table, but folding the napkins incorrectly. Excepting for pragmatic populism, Mitt was 95% awesome. Just kept the bat on his shoulder during that slow, fat, hanging Libyan curveball.

Posted by: johngalt at October 17, 2012 2:27 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Since the next and last debate this coming Monday is explicitly on foreign policy I'd say he's going to get the equivalent of another at-bat! And likely have memorized a minute-by-minute of reality v. White House spin.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 17, 2012 6:07 PM

Happy Birthday, Dad!

My father was born 99 years ago today. Lost him a few months after this video was made, but he was the first coffeehouser:

I had just purchased an 8mm camcorder and caught my Dad playing the song he wrote for my Mom when they first dated in Oklahoma City.

But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

That's sweet...perhaps bittersweet, but obviously he LIVED a life, and since we're all going sometime, that's the very best there is.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 16, 2012 8:09 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

A very charming man!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 16, 2012 11:44 PM
But jk thinks:

Thanks. I am very happy to have this video.

Sharp-eyed evening readers will have noticed that I posted this on the 16th and dated it forward. But on his birthday, if I had not called, the phone would ring about 8:30 or 9:00 AM. I'd answer "Hello" and he'd say "Well???????" My sister and I still celebrate birthdays with "Welll????" And I thought it best to be prepared.

Posted by: jk at October 17, 2012 9:02 AM
But Sugarchuck thinks:

Your dad was one of the very finest men I've ever known. I miss him. Thanks for putting up this video.

Posted by: Sugarchuck at October 17, 2012 9:34 AM

Is that a Fact?

Inspired by an old friend, I fact-checked the original Fact Checker: the folks at the Annenberg Center. It was not an inspiring event. Generally, FactCheck.Org appears to be more solid than the hyperventilating hyperpartisans at "Pants on Fire!" PolitiFact but are still more than happy to rely on rhetoric and ignore the inconvenient. Where does

Ryan at one point ground out a collection of shopworn misstatements
fit in with fact checking?

I searched for Biden's statement about voting against both wars - surely a "howler" if there was one - and it didn't appear to be worth Annenberg's time.

And lastly, one bald-faced lie

Ryan is also wrong to claim that not one of [the {IPAB} board members] even has to have medical training.
, FC claims to disprove this here and here. Neither follow on page contains any facts that dispute what Ryan said.

FC.org says the law says the members must include national health care experts, physicians and other health care professionals, economists, and representatives of consumers and seniors. Only one of the category mentioned - per FC's interpretation - in the law necessarily has medical training, and it's not by my reading required that ALL are needed (aka, must there be a physician?).

I shouldn't be shocked, and I'm not. But I am disappointed.

2012 Election Posted by nanobrewer at 12:34 AM | What do you think? [1]
But jk thinks:

Save us from the fact checkers!

I'm not generally a millenarian, but I wonder that the media is performing so poorly in this election cycle it will finally break open and people will accept what shills they are.

Posted by: jk at October 17, 2012 8:56 AM

October 16, 2012

Natural Law and Natural Rights

If one doesn't have time to read a whole thick book on the subject, one could do worse than read this post by modern Thomist-Scholastic Edward Feser.

If a squirrel were rational, it would be natural and good for him to will to escape predators and to gather nuts for the winter and unnatural and bad for him to will to offer himself up to predators and to eat only toothpaste or stones. And the latter would be unnatural and bad for him whatever was the reason why he willed these things -- brain damage, genetic anomalies giving rise to odd desires, bad squirrel upbringing, squirrel peer pressure, the influence of squirrel pop culture, arguments from squirrel philosophers who were hostile to natural law, or whatever.

Remember the level of consternation when nominee Mr. Justice Thomas spoke of natural rights at his confirmation hearing? A continuation of the quote shows why:

They would also be unnatural and bad for him however strongly he wanted to eat the toothpaste and offer himself to the predators, and even if he found the idea of eating nuts and fleeing from predators repulsive. The provenance and strength of the desires wouldnt show that they were somehow natural (again, in the relevant sense) but on the contrary indicate instead how deeply distorted and unnatural the squirrels character had become -- like a hose thats gotten so many kinks in it that it is hard to get water through it anymore, or a vine whose growth pattern has gotten so twisted that it ends up choking itself to death.

Some of those "liberal" Senators knew exactly where Thomas's theories would lead--to the fact of "how deeply distorted and unnatural" certain behaviors are, behaviors once condemned by a healthy society. Why, there might even be basic, unchangeable differences between men and women! It might be impossible that "No Child" be "Left Behind!" Some "lifestyles" might be bad for individual and societal health!

And so, Anita Hill was brought out of the shadows and, despite Thomas's confirmation, in my view the nation was degraded and weakened.

I believe Atlas Shrugged has Francisco asking a woman at Rearden's party something like, "Don't you believe in the working of the natural law, madam?" If one of you could call that up I'd be interested in seeing what Rand said there and elsewhere on the subject.

Philosophy Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 7:21 PM | What do you think? [0] | TrackBack

October 15, 2012

Sermon for the Choir

Astonishingly, the Obama Administration continues to tout the auto bailout as its big success. Even grading on a curve...

Hat-tip: Dan Mitchell (via Insty) who says "If the Auto Bailout Was a Success, I'd Hate to See What a Failure Looks Like"


October 14, 2012

The Man Who Fell to Earth...

...from freaking OUTER SPACE!

ROSWELL, N.M. -- Sky adventurer Felix Baumgartner completed a 24-mile skydive Sunday, wrapping up a five-year effort to break shatter a world record set 52 years ago.

Somewhere, Robert Anson Heinlein is smiling.

UPDATE: Inspired by comment from blog friend Terri.

Felix%20Baumgartner%20before%20jump_638x900.jpg

But Jk thinks:

A W E S O M E !

Posted by: Jk at October 14, 2012 2:58 PM
But Terri thinks:

That shot where he is looking down at earth is one of the coolest photos in the world. Wow.

Just don't read the comments people are making (including Facebook). We aren't living in a computer ala The Matrix, we are living in a book, Atlas Shrugged.

Posted by: Terri at October 15, 2012 8:48 AM
But jk thinks:

Mrs. Greenspan reports he travelled faster than light.

There once was a fellow named Blight,
Who could travel faster than light.
He went out one day,
In a relative way,
And returned the previous night.

Posted by: jk at October 15, 2012 4:27 PM
But jk thinks:

An Insty reader steals my limerick! Damned Intertubes!

Posted by: jk at October 15, 2012 4:32 PM
But johngalt thinks:

It's not really fair to expect Mzzz Mitchell to be thoroughly precise in matters outside of her field. That would be analogous to expecting a physicist to be able to read, with a straight face, biased news reports as though they are one-hundred percent objective. Some things just have to be left to professionals.

Posted by: johngalt at October 15, 2012 4:59 PM

It Is So On!

I have to issue some personal props to my pal, JC. Most of the Colorado contingent knows him personally, and other ThreeSourcers may remember some heterodoxical comments. My friend is a man of the left and a Malthusian who sees much of what I call progress as questionable because of environmental impact.

But this guy engages with me on Facebook and drove across town on a Friday afternoon to surprise/meet me at the 3:55 showing of Atlas Shrugged Part II.

Most notably, out of dozens of attempts, he remains the only one to take me up on one of my "I'll read any book you suggest if you'll read X" offers. We discussed round one a bit on these pages. He surprised me by showing up to the movie, and he himself suggested another "book challenge." I accepted, of course, and he ran to the car to get a treasured copy of Don Fabun's "The Dynamics of Change." After a brief discussion, I countered with David Deutsch's "Beginning of Infinity" discussed 'round these parts

We briefly discussed "virtual book club" and I have made an attempt here. As JC is a Facebook guy (Doyen of the infamous FB nemeses), I started a Facebook Page: The JC-JK Book Club. A couple ThreeSourcers have "liked" it -- as have a bunch of lefty pals. Should be a wang dang doodle if anybody else cares to pile in.

Review Corner Posted by John Kranz at 10:02 AM | What do you think? [0]

October 13, 2012

No Shrug from Me!

JK went first for Part 1 so I'll break the ice this time. I faintly remember my opinion of the first Atlas Shrugged film suffering from too high expectations so I'll try not to elevate the reader's unreasonably. As for Atlas Shrugged Part 2, this movie was fun. For one thing, it looked and felt more like a modern movie than did Part 1. Cinematography was still run of the mill, but a far cry better than we were made to endure last time. Enough so that I only noticed the deficiency once.

My only complaint is the audio was dull and lifeless, most noticeably during scenes with dramatic music. The scene deserved more from the soundtrack but did not get it - either in volume or fullness. Awareness of this may have been heightened by a too-low volume setting in the theater and I will have a word with the manager on my next viewing.

I really liked the new casting. Characters are more mature and believable, more closely matching my personal expectation from the original prose. But the story was the real star. I think it was all there. Character and relationship introductions were effective, bridging the void for new viewers who didn't have experience to draw upon. A non-sequitur opening scene got the excitement going from the start and it rolled swiftly without being rushed, as ASP1 felt on a recent reviewing. All of the scenes were greatly abbreviated from the novel form but the gist was not lost, even in the completely revised retelling of John Galt's departure from 20th Century Motor Company: Galt left because "the Starnes heirs announced they would manage the company as a collective where we all belonged to each other. Each was expected to work according to his ability, and was compensated based on his need. Galt said he'd have nothing to do with that" and a few more things. The result was also explained: "Productivity declined, the needy got needier, and worker turned against worker." It didn't matter to the story that this was told by a conscientious railroad employee instead of a train-hopping hobo.

I'm really quite surprised by how big a deal it seems to be to so many people that the cast changed from film to film. They really seem to have gotten distracted by the fact. I predict this will pass for those who view more than once.

Stars? I'm giving all five of my Ayn Rand fanboy stars to this one. As with the novel, I didn't want this movie to end. Can't wait to see it again!

But Jk thinks:

It was fun. And it was effective at shaping the ideas of the book. And I'll even be kinder than you on cinematography -- the texture of the offices, homes and cars were very rich.

I liked the new cast but preferred the first Dagny. Not a deal breaker, but I'd go with V1.0. The cameo of Raymond Teller lit the lovely bride and I for the whole film.

Posted by: Jk at October 13, 2012 8:24 AM
But johngalt thinks:

My dagny isn't here to speak for herself so I'll repeat her point that the actress who played Dagny "V1.0" was too young for the part. I don't completely agree but I can see her point: I envisioned Rand's Dagny as a thirty-something, not a twenty-something (or a late thirties rather than barely thirty.) We'll see if she feels the same way after seeing Dagny V2.0 (as soon as possible after a horse show this weekend.)

Posted by: johngalt at October 13, 2012 2:17 PM
But jk thinks:

We want to go again -- let us know when y'all are.

Posted by: jk at October 13, 2012 6:51 PM
But johngalt thinks:

We're talking about Thursday, for the Mike Rosen showing in Centennial.

Was too busy buying popcorn to look for you between shows. I did run into brother Bryan though and his entourage. Fun! (Speakin' o' which, where's his bio? Bryan?)

Posted by: johngalt at October 14, 2012 11:13 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Okay, Rosen's screening has been moved Tuesday 10/23 so we're thinking about going earlier than that. Any dates you'd like to recommend?

Posted by: johngalt at October 16, 2012 2:32 PM
But jk thinks:

Centennial on Thursday wasn't grabbing me -- I was going to say "have fun stormin' the castle!"

Tomorrow and Thursday are all day training on-site, but we're pretty flexible otherwise. Please don't miss it 'cause you're waiting for us, but we're in for another viewing if it works out.

Posted by: jk at October 16, 2012 2:38 PM

October 12, 2012

An Inquiry

Three Sources is Universe-wide in its coverage, but Colorado-based in its essence.

So as a Gentlebeing from another state, I am curious if the Three Sourcers are familiar with (or perchance have met) any of these Free Coloradans of Interest:

Christine Smith
L. Neil Smith
Ann Barnhardt
Trey Parker and Matt Stone

Colorado seems to be a hotbed of creativity and just a right cool place nowadays. If any of y'all know where Galt's Gulch is located, I know you need to pretend ignorance, but PM me.

But johngalt thinks:

Maybe I'm wrong in thinking we didn't chase away brother AlexC but I thought he found his time better spent with a higher local readership. He does still comment from time to time.

Posted by: johngalt at October 15, 2012 2:47 PM
But jk thinks:

Gentle, fraternal ribbing -- I wish we did half as well for Colorado as they do for PA at the cooler. It's a model of what blogs can be in the local arena.

Perhaps after meeting the local candidates at Liberty on the Rocks, I will finally make good on my promises to adjust focus.

Posted by: jk at October 15, 2012 3:26 PM
But jk thinks:

Gunnison -- we should all meet at Mario's Pizza...

Posted by: jk at October 16, 2012 10:51 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Thought about that but Gunnison is a 4-hour drive from our Atlantis. Maybe Buena Vista instead? Evergreen Cafe.

Posted by: johngalt at October 16, 2012 2:41 PM
But jk thinks:

And a guy with my car doesn't do Monarch unless conditions are perfect. I'm in for Byunah Vista if the weather is good.

Posted by: jk at October 16, 2012 3:48 PM
But dagny thinks:

JK, you are always welcome in any of our cars. They are not so much fun to drive but are, perhaps, preferable in adverse weather conditions.

Posted by: dagny at October 17, 2012 11:25 AM

The VP Debate in One Quote

Perhaps a chuckle here and a chuckle there could have achieved the mission of making us think that Biden doesn't respect Paul Ryan, but without making Biden himself seem like he'd had a big long bong hit in the green room. -- Kieth Koffler
Hat-tip: Blog friend Terri @ Ruminants (via Bookworm Room, Neoneocon)
2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 1:36 PM | What do you think? [0]

...but he wasn't real!

Who you believe won last night's vice presidential debate seems to be largely determined by who you were rooting for. The Left gave it hands-down to Biden and the Right did the same for Ryan. The real story on both sides, however, is the snark - or aggressiveness, depending your perspective - shown by Biden throughout the debate. There's much speculation as to how this will play in the middle with "undecided" and unaffiliated voters. While admitting a bias, The Refugee has concluded that it probably won't play well.

Having grown up in uber-Liberal Boulder, The Refugee is always amazed by middle-of-the-road voter's penchant for politicians who are "real" and can "connect." (So what if their policies bankrupt the nation?) Last night, Biden was anything but "real." His act was just that - contrived and rehearsed like a middle school play. He even had the teenage hair flips, except without the hair.

Will he connect with middle America? Probably not, but he did provide some salve for wounded leftist egos, such as Chris Matthews' and Rachel Maddow's. But, winning the election is not about playing to TV personalities who are to the left of Karl Marx. As far as the election is concerned, he was at best neutral. Likeability, by most pundits estimation, is what has kept Obama/Biden in the race. That advantage may be squandered in the Dem ticket's attempt to play "man."

UPDATE: This, from "Our Peggy" Noonan in today's WSJ:

National Democrats keep confusing strength with aggression and command with sarcasm. Even the latter didn't work for Mr. Biden. The things he said had the rhythm and smirk of sarcasm without the cutting substance.
2012 Election Posted by Boulder Refugee at 1:08 PM | What do you think? [2]
But jk thinks:

Yes, my Facebook page filled quickly with approbation for the Vice President and the moderator. Not sure what channel they were watching...

Somebody said (sorry I have forgotten who) "You can't really have an intelligent argument with the bar drunk yelling in the corner." I was disappointed that there was not more space for ideas.

Chairman Ryan's closing statement was superb, but as I whined on Ruminants, I don't know how many endured the 89 minutes of pain to hear it.

Posted by: jk at October 12, 2012 3:06 PM
But johngalt thinks:

My take last night was,

i) Biden got in some good points on letters for Stimulus money and abortion;
ii) Biden admitted White House is either clueless or lying about Libya;
iii) Ryan got in a subtle jab about Biden gaffes and appeared polite and knowledgeable but was otherwise unimpressive;
iv) Biden mannerisms were over the top and would hopefully backfire. As the performance aged Ryan would look better and Biden poorer.

This last expectation does seem to be coming true. Final analysis - a draw. The excessive affectations seemed to me indicative of a man who was trying too hard, either from desperation or a hero complex, trying to "save the team." It'll be interesting to see how much, if any, of that is adopted by the President in his next debate.

Posted by: johngalt at October 12, 2012 4:15 PM

See You on the Red Carpet!

AMC Promenade Westminster at 3:55.

But johngalt thinks:

I and my entourage will see you on your way out brother. Same theater, second showing.

Others who, like me can hardly wait, may also be interested in this Reason interview of several cast members by Reason staffer "Kennedy."

Posted by: johngalt at October 12, 2012 3:53 PM

October 11, 2012

or "Schadenfreude"

It's not like I didn't warn them. Germany's misguided effort to replace all nuclear power plants with "green" energy sources is already leading to higher costs, more taxes and frequent blackouts. Predictibly, the poor are the first to suffer as an estimated 200,000 households on government assistance had their power shut off due to unpaid bills.

Far from a well-conceived plan, and how could it be when reliable power sources are eschewed for wishful ones, the effort has led to chaos.

Merkel's Blackout - Energy Plan Plagued by Lack of Progress

Meanwhile, Germany's 16 federal states are developing their own concepts, some of which are at odds with each other. Bavarian Governor Horst Seehofer says that his state plans to develop a self-sufficient energy supply. But David McAllister, the governor of the northern state of Lower Saxony, has a plan based on supplying Bavaria with large amounts of electricity from wind farms off the North Sea coast.

What some grid operators, power plant owners and scientists are doing today is nothing short of flabbergasting. There are power plants that are not connected to the grid, power masts without lines, and power lines leading to nowhere.

"There is still quite a lot to do here," Rösler said when he emerged from the boiler room in Hönow. Petra Röfke, the owner, nodded. Rösler added that he couldn't have imagined so much waste. "It's crazy, isn't it?"

Crazy indeed. The last of the 3-part series German Energy Revolution, of which the linked article is part 1, ends thus:

Despite all the criticism, the experts still believe that the energy turnaround is the right thing to do. It just has to be done correctly, says Löschel.

When Environment Minister Altmaier was traveling this summer, he was often asked about the nuclear phase-out. In these conversations, his English-speaking counterparts matter-of-factly used Energiewende, the German word for the energy turnaround. The term has apparently become established worldwide.

Altmaier was pleased. But it remains to be seen whether talk of Germany's Energiewende will be taken as a compliment in the future, just as kindergarten and autobahn have entered the English language as largely positive terms, or whether Energiewende will become more of a derisive term, like "German angst."

... or "Schadenfreude."

But jk thinks:

Sie haben keine Einhörner?

Posted by: jk at October 11, 2012 3:43 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

As a lover of the German language...remarkably applicable to power grids: Eine Kette ist nur so stark wie ihr schwächstes Glied!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 11, 2012 4:10 PM
But Steve D thinks:

Of course the poor suffer. That's the whole point of the exercise.

Posted by: Steve D at October 11, 2012 7:11 PM

Yaron Brook

Five days before wowing the ThreeSources contingent at Liberty on the Rocks -- Flatirons, Yaron Brook gave a similar speech to the Michigan Tea Party: [link]

UPDATE: EVEN BETTER! Ari Armstrong posts the video from our event -- replete with Brother Bryan's eloquent intro!


October 10, 2012

Benghazi Bird III

All Hail Jake Tapper -- an actual non-stooge in the Washington Press Corps. "Security Officer on State Department Blocking Requests: 'For Me the Taliban Is Inside the Building'"

"I have been a career foreign service officer for 39 years," [Patrick] Kennedy said when asked if political considerations trumped protocol. "I have served every president since Richard Nixon, I have directly served six secretaries of State, Democratic and Republican. On my honor: no. None."

[Lt. Col Andrew] Wood said that when he heard of the attack on the Benghazi post on September 11, it was "instantly recognizable" that it had been a terrorist attack.

Why?

"Mainly because of my prior knowledge there," Wood said. "I almost expected the attack to come. We were the last flag flying. It was a matter of time."

Last flag flying...

Hat-tip: @verumserum


Okay, now this is cool!

Did'ja see this on Reason.tv? Alex Tabbarok and Tyler Cowen (whose name I have been mispronouncing) have a free, fast track economics course online.

Education Posted by John Kranz at 5:25 PM | What do you think? [0]

Benghazi Bird II

As with most things in life, I certainly hope my blog brother jg is correct:


Benghazi Bird?

Never have a blogger stay at your house. They eat too much and hog your Wi-Fi. More importantly, they share private family details on the Internet.

But I stayed with some people last week who had an interesting procedure. There's a jar in the bedroom, and you have to put in a dollar when you say . . . wait for it . . . "If George W. Bush were President..." At le condo d'Amor, I'd have a 1958 Les Paul and a '59 Corvette to drive it around in.

But the world is not ThreeSources. And I am becoming convinced that the Obama Administration is not going to face any ramifications for the Libyan embassy Attacks. Yes, right wingers like Jennifer Rubin will whine:

Moreover, the State Department now confesses there was no protest at all outside the Libyan installation before the attack.

That's awfully problematic, given that Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice went on five talk shows suggesting in fact that the movie did provoke the attack. Mitt Romney's top foreign policy adviser, Richard Williamson, told Right Turn, "Last time I checked, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations was part of the U.S. State Department."


But I think the President will be able to run out the clock talking about Big Bird. I wish I were wrong.

But johngalt thinks:

Naah, don't think so. You're too cynical, but rightfully so. A CBS correspondent has criticized the administration, with support of her superiors. Allegiances within the administration are crumbling. The next Presidential Debate is a Town Hall on foreign policy. Think this won't dominate? Then the next question is which is worse: an administration that can't prevent terrorists from murdering American diplomats on a 9/11 anniversary or one that will flat-out lie to prevent it from derailing re-election?

The buzzards are beginning at least to gather, if not circle. As we saw in Venezuela, Obama's lieutenants will stop campaigning for him and various supporters will (already are) begin to abandon him.

You may be right. I'll give you that. But if this isn't the beginning of the end, it's at least what it usually looks like.

Posted by: johngalt at October 10, 2012 2:54 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

This is a scandal that would embarrass Richard Nixon and the press is playing the role of the Three Wise Monkeys.

The Refugee is willing to pay a dollar to say, "If George W. Bush was president..."

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 10, 2012 3:56 PM
But jk thinks:

Amen, brother br. Wonder if they take PayPal®?

Posted by: jk at October 10, 2012 6:03 PM
But johngalt thinks:

On the other hand, I watched the intro for ABC's 'Nightline' program last night. Old geezers will remember that show was born from the special late-night news updates on the Iranian hostage crisis during the Carter Administration. Ted Koppel made a respectable news show of it for decades. No longer. Last night's three stories:

"Michelle Obama on Role in Campaign"
"Female Fighter Pilot"
"Expensive Burger"

Hey Ms. McFadden, the State Department is under investigation for an election season cover-up that rivals Watergate. Anyone notice? I heard some people died or something.

Posted by: johngalt at October 11, 2012 11:34 AM

The Faint, Distant Sound of a Stampede

My favorite type of column to titter over is "cloistered political intellectual lectures man/woman actually in the arena about how to campaign."

As a political/government professional myself for the last 12 years, I can attest that it's the easiet thing in the world to sit on a $900 office chair in Bel Air, Manhattan or Georgetown and write critical columns, just like the fat, old guys who scream in print every Monday about how Mark Sanchez should have thrown it away instead of taking a sack with two minutes left.

Our Miss Noonan has fallen into this mode occasionally, but I don't really count her becasue she was "in the arena" with the Reagan administration. Andrew Sullivan, in the manner of a hysterical maiden aunt, has been the most reliably entertaining figure in this genre the last few years...but now comes Michael Tomasky.

Mikey's actually been around for quite awhile--I recall him running something called "Guardian America" a few years back, which tells you where he's coming from. Anyway, let's get right to the Piece in Question:

How Obama Needs to Make Mitt Unacceptable Again

(...) Question: Is it possible to make a guy who has crossed the acceptable threshold look unacceptable again? Well, first, it depends on how far across that threshold he is. If hes vaulted miles across it, probably not. But if hes just slithered across it, then yes. And I think Romney is still more the latter than the former.

Others disagree. Theres this conversation going on, even if somewhat subtextually, among liberals right now. On the one side are those with the view that these shifting voters were parked with Obama but just waiting for any excuse to desert him (because of the economy, chiefly), and now they have that excuse, so theyre gone. Thats the Eeyore School. The other schoolwhat to call it? The Tigger School? Or perhaps name it after Pooh himself, with his quizzical faith in human (animal) nature?thinks no, it isnt that dark. People just saw one clearly superior debate performance, but it doesnt mean theyre gone forever.


Subtextually? Really? I've seen this all over the last six days. Here's a harsh reality, Mike: Obama had an unusually large number of supporters who liked him because he was in soft focus, like leading ladies in the old movies. He was cool. he was Hopey. He was freakin' Kumbaya. These people were ready to go as soon as the President didn't make them feel good. Last week, in one night, several millions lost that loving feeling.

Mike goes on with long passages of his ideas in quotes. This is a classic intellecto-journo method; "Mr. Candidate you should just copy and paste this passage into your next debate book. It's in quotes!"

Here's where it gets even better: the laundry list of stuff Obama should challenge Romney to a fistfight on:

On abortion rights. On equal pay. On contraceptive access. On the Supreme Court. On the environment. On clean air. On Republican failures over the years and why conservative dogma doesnt work. On Bush economics vs. Clinton economics. On Detroit and the bailout. On what Romney did at Bainmaximizing profits whether doing so created jobs or killed them. On the 47 percent, to whom Romney apologized in the most staged and insincere manner possible
. Oh please, Mr. President! There's only one problem here, which is that a plurality of the voters agree with Romney on many of these issues! Probably not in Mikey's DC area neighborhood, but in Ohio and Wisconsin and Colorado.

And Gack, at the end he posits that some of [this work] needs to be done "by Joe Biden on Thursday."

Oh, there's more. "What he'll do in a second term." Of course no one in "Chicago" has thought of that before. They know damn well that if they say what Obama wants to do in a second term it will scare the scheiss out of the productive class and lose in a landslide. Less than four weeks until Election Day and we have No. Freaking. Idea. of what Obama wants to do in a second term. For good reason.

All because Obama's top guys aren't listening enough to Michael Tomasky. Read it for the entertainment value--not as much fun as Andrew Sullivan's bathetic caterwauling, but a sort of "how (not) to" guide to campaigning.

2012 Election Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 1:53 PM | What do you think? [0]

Otequay of the Ayday

The re-election campaign of the President who allowed America's Ambassador to Libya to be murdered on the anniversary of 9/11, and claimed for a week that the deaths were a consequence of a completely unrelated event, is now focusing its attention on Mitt Romney's promise to cut funding for PBS and "Big Bird." My dagny answered swiftly and succinctly this morning:

"I'd rather spend the $445 million annual federal subsidy to Big Bird on more security for our ambassador to Libya."

(If you click through, don't miss the last paragraph of each article.)


October 9, 2012

Two Minutes of AWESOME!

Think of it as morality tales for the iPod generation.

Dr. Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute credits Arthur Brooks at American Enterprise Institute as the most influential proponent of the morality of free markets and capitalism. The results of AEI's Video Contest will show you why.

I posted the First Prize winner, as determined by a collection of judges, on my Facebook page. But I think they're all great. Each one is a 2-minute lesson in anti-statism, and in true free market fashion I'm linking to the full page of finalists for you to pick your own winner. As for me, I'm the father of three daughters and I choose for my favorite: Suzie's Lemonade Stand.

Many of these teach lessons that used to reside in public education. This is an excellent opportunity to return them there.

Watch them. Share them. Promote them.


UPDATE: I may have awarded too soon. I'll stand by my favorite but honorable mention also to "Pet Enterprise" and "Making Pie." I also predict JKs fave will be "FES International." Like I said: Awesome ... Every ... One.

But jk thinks:

Many are nice -- but I am going to go with Susie, with honorable metion to "My Grandfather's Story."

Posted by: jk at October 9, 2012 8:18 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Since I probably wouldn't have seen these otherwise, many, many thanks for posting! The winner was special because it had government agents in suits seizing Mom's sewing machine and shutting down the "illegal" operation. To be honest, I thought Susie's lemonade stand was going to be raided by a SWAT team any second!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 9, 2012 8:54 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Don't get JK started on the SWAT team raid thing...

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 9, 2012 10:34 PM
But jk thinks:

When lemons are outlawed...

Posted by: jk at October 10, 2012 6:47 AM

We Don't Need No Education

Jay Greene has an excellent WSJ guest editorial today on "The Imaginary Teacher Shortage."

Parents like the idea of smaller class sizes in the same way that people like the idea of having a personal chef. Parents imagine that their kids will have one of the Iron Chefs. But when you have to hire almost 3.3 million chefs, you're liable to end up with something closer to the fry-guy from the local burger joint.

Last night, blog brother jg solicited my opinion of his Randucation post. Of course I liked it, but I thought it was optimistic. Not that there were no qualifiers in the post, but Governor Romney impressed me more with style than philosophy. A few comments made me suck air between my molars. A pragmatic tour de force, for certain. But Randian?

Greene points out that Romney was too happy to play "You're going to hire a million teachers? I'm going to hire eleventy-billion teachers!" (Not, perhaps, Greene's exact words...) But Yaron Brook (sorry ThreeSourcers, you're going to be hearing about him a couple weeks at least) decried the horrid state of education. I laughed because my great-nephew, Brian, is still in high school and was told how worthless it is. But more of the same is not going to help.

There is also a trade-off between the number of teachers we have and the salary we can offer to attract better-quality people. As the teacher force has grown by almost 50% over the past four decades, average salaries for teachers (adjusted for inflation) have grown only 11%, the Department of Education reports. Imagine what kinds of teachers we might be able to recruit if those figures had been flipped and we were offering 50% more pay without having significantly changed student-teacher ratios. Having better-paid but fewer teachers could also save us an enormous amount on pension and health benefits, which have risen far more than salaries in cost per teacher over the past four decades.

Then there is the trade-off between labor and capital. Instead of hiring an army of additional teachers, we could have developed and purchased innovative educational technology. The path to productivity increases in every industry comes through the substitution of capital for labor. We use better and cheaper technology so that we don't need as many expensive people. But education has gone in the opposite direction, making little use of technology and hiring many more expensive people.


Don't rip my pragmatism badge of my sash just yet -- that's a good position and I want -- very badly -- to win. I just don't know that we can pretend we have a candidate that is true believer.

Education Posted by John Kranz at 11:48 AM | What do you think? [0]

ThreeSources Book Club

All the Liberty on the Rocks events have been incredibly interesting. But Dr. Yaron Brook really hit it out of the park last night.

The head of the Ayn Rand Institute brings a superb humor and disciplined presentation of Rand's ideas. I have been sharply critical of some others and don't care to name names -- but Brook is an effective advocate.

Brother jg, blog friend Terri, the lovely bride, my great-nephew and I left with signed copies of his book.

Rather than a standard review corner, I suggest we set a date (Oct 21? 28?) for a wider discussion. Sound good?


But johngalt thinks:

Thanks for the comment Steve, but I think you may be carrying the "sovereign individual" thing a bit too far. Voting strategies in a democracy affect thousands of votes in every state, not just your own. Furthermore, recent elections have been breathtakingly close - a few hundred votes at times, or just five votes from each of the 67 counties in Florida.

Ours (Colorado) is a swing state. Ohio is even more critical, and folks with principled yet naive votes for minor candidates in these states could deliver the deciding electoral votes to our current disaster of a president (who happens to also be a swell guy.)

If Mitt Romney isn't principled enough to earn your vote (which I'd be happy to discuss in detail) just ask yourself if you're willing to risk 4 more years of economic decay and permanence of a new nationwide entitlement while we wait for a pluarlity of Americans to completely dispense with their worldview and vote for that rilly smart former governor of the state most Americans think isn't even in the USA.

Posted by: johngalt at October 9, 2012 1:11 PM
But jk thinks:

@Steve D: I second the thanks for your thoughtful comment. BUT...

Here is where I'm coming from: I am in a swing state. None of my (many) friends who will be voting for the President can be reached by reason. None of my friends are "undecideds." I know a couple dozen libertarian types, however. They will listen to reason and I will make the case that the differential between Governor Romney and President Obama is so large, that it is worth making the pragmatic choice.

I won't get all of them and I may reach none. But I strongly believe in this large liberty-differential and intend to do whatever I can to elect Gov. Romney and Chairman Ryan.

Posted by: jk at October 9, 2012 3:11 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Virtual Book Club sounds like fun. Is there an app for that?

Posted by: johngalt at October 9, 2012 4:49 PM
But jk thinks:

We could Skype... I was just thinking of a blog thread, basically holding review corner for a few weeks to give everyone time to complete the reading assignment. Somebody starts a review corner, then pandemonium...

Posted by: jk at October 9, 2012 5:47 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:

@SD: a perfect case in point "for your consideration". In CO, our votes can really, REALLY count by getting 9 EVs to Romney. In CA, by brother makes a perfect point that he can with nary an afterthought vote independent b/c Romney will never get CA's electoral votes.

Californication; the 21st century's Twilight Zone.

Posted by: nanobrewer at October 10, 2012 1:53 AM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Say, Insty has this "in the mail" today! Should be good for a few hundred copies. Exxxxcellent.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 10, 2012 1:18 PM

Coffeehousin'

Coffeehouse

Stardust

My Mom's favorite tune -- and Brother Ellis's second favorite.

Live at the Coffeehouse dot Com
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Love, love the way you hold the "yesterdaaayaaay!" Awesome new guitar, too.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 9, 2012 3:45 PM
But jk thinks:

Many thanks!

Posted by: jk at October 9, 2012 4:02 PM

October 8, 2012

1 tank equals 100,000 votes

Last week I endorsed the Venezuelan Model for challenging and ultimately defeating a corrupt and dishonest leftist president - namely, fiercely denounce the crime, corruption, inflation and fiscal incontinence of the regime.

But a sad and predictable thing happened on the way from the polling places to the official results.

According to the Associated Press, Venezuelas electoral council has declared that Hugo Chavez beat Henriques Capriles in Sundays presidential election with about 54 percent of the vote, despite exit polls showing otherwise.

The independent exit polls showed the challenger won 51.3% to 48.06%. [No word yet from President Carter.] The result: Tanks in the streets.

Let's hope it doesn't come to that in the North American version of this tale.


Neutralizing the OBL Advantage

About the only success of the Obama administration that is agreed upon by all sides is the killing of Osama bin Laden. As the debate turns to foreign affairs, Our Empty-Chair-in-Chief will no doubt attempt to ride this success to a second term. When the topic comes up, here is The Refugee's modest suggestion for dealing with it:

Mr. President, you are to be congratulated on the killing of Osama bin Laden as a major American victory. I also congratulate the Seal team that conducted the operation and hail their extraordinary bravery that few of us watching the event unfold on our TVs could ever muster.

At the same time, we must acknowledge that this victory was a decade in the making by thousands of dedicated intelligence personnel working painstakingly and tirelessly until the finally got their man.

We must also acknowledge that their work was aided by technology that was decades in the making. Stealth technology, secure communications equipment, surveillance equipment, tactics and training that make America's military second to none. All these advances were supported and funded by presidents for use well beyond their own terms in office.

The defense cuts that you have proposed will have consequences for decades to come. Without technological superiority, it's entirely likely that a future president won't have the tools he or she needs to get the next Osama bin Laden - and there surely will be one.

As Commander in Chief, I will not allow that to happen. Not only will our men and women have the tools they need to fight today's battles, but presidents in the decades to come to will have the same advantages that you enjoy today. It's one thing to saddle our children and grandchildren with unimaginable debts. It's an entirely different thing to render them defenseless as well. I will not allow that to happen.

2012 Election Posted by Boulder Refugee at 2:12 PM | What do you think? [2]
But johngalt thinks:

So you're saying that the killing of OBL was "Bush's fault."

This works for me, and would make me more inclined to vote for Romney, but then again, you had me at "congratulate the seal team."

A minor fact-check: None of us have watched the events unfold on our TVs yet, but we can see it two days before election day. (And to think I never thought I would find any reason to appreciate early voting.)

Posted by: johngalt at October 8, 2012 3:21 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The TV comment was intended to be a dig that Obama takes all the credit for the operation while watching it from the safety of his bunker. The Refugee was concerned that a more direct comment would backfire as being too snarky.

Early voting in Weld County begins October 22 and The Refugee intends to be there. If he gets hit by a truck between then and election day at least his vote will be counted.

Which raises a question: if someone dies between casting a ballot and election day, should the ballot count? If we agree that dead people should not vote (except in Cook County and Dallas County), then would such a scenario not invalidate early voting? It would seem to be inevitable.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 8, 2012 3:58 PM

Happy Columbus Day!

In all the chatter, we completely missed everybody's favorite holiday! Happy Columbus Day ThreeSourcers! For the record: while I do not consider him a genocidal maniac to be scorned, I would not afford a holiday in his honor. America is not about geography and many people vital to our existence remain unrecognized.

But if you want to get your hate on, you could do no worse than Marc Lamont Hill's The 15 Most Overrated White People.

I don't think I'll excerpt -- click if it sounds good.

Hat-tip: @davidharsanyi: "hey look, every cliche known to man in an easy-to-read format! http://t.co/suG6c25S @marclamonthill"

UPDATE: Professor Jacobsen is not impressed.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:07 PM | What do you think? [3]
But johngalt thinks:

Columbus Day never meant much to me until my sister was born on the date originally assigned for the federal holiday, October 12. Being a crusty reactinary, I react negatively to all of the day-of-week shifting for official observances. They dilute the meaning of the observance to little more than a fortuitous 3-day weekend, useful for standing in line for the latest iPhone or whatever.

The original motivation for the holiday, according to Wikipedia, was national pride on the part of an Italian immigrant resident of Colorado. So to all of those anti-Columbus activists, stop decrying multiculturalism!

Posted by: johngalt at October 8, 2012 3:29 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Happy Thanksgiving, Canada-ites!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 8, 2012 4:06 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

That list is pretty amusing, but it's bogus since "Che" isn't on it. Has there ever been a more overrated white person?

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 8, 2012 6:34 PM

Liberty on the Rocks

An update on tonight's event with Yaron Brook - new location:

Liberty On The Rocks - Flatirons

10:18am Oct 8


**REMINDER: LOCATION CHANGE FOR TONIGHT'S HAPPY HOUR**
This is just a reminder that our venue for this evening's event has changed to the following location:
Miller's Grille
103 S. Public Road
Lafayette, 80026

We will be in the lower level ("Millers Down Under") starting at 6:00pm. *Please help us spread the word to people who otherwise may not be notified of this change.* Thanks, and we'll see you tonight for what's sure to be an incredible event!!

I will be there, sans progeny and my better half, but I will have some free "Who Is John Galt?" T-shirts to give away! (Haven't decided how yet. Atlas Shrugged trivia contest?)

Posted by JohnGalt at 1:02 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Had to refer back to the Facebook entry to find that the scheduled time is

6:00-9:00 pm.

Posted by: johngalt at October 8, 2012 2:36 PM

Satire Fails.

I always think the Onion writers are superbly clever. I don't always agree but I get a kick out of them

Whoever writes for contactmusic.com, however, has them totally beat. I may never read the Onion again. Listen to this supposed story of the pop singer Madonna =-- it is pitch perfect!

Madonna has decided against wearing a Muslim bridal dress in her new music video over fears for her safety.

The 54-year-old singer was planning to don a "Terror Bride" outfit -- a combination of a traditional Iraqi bridal veil and a US soldier's uniform -- in the video for upcoming single "Superstar" as a statement against oppression against women and war, but her advisers convinced her to ditch the political stunt because of the outrage it would be likely to cause.

A source said: '"Madonna had the outfit ready to go. She was really proud of it and said it was her 'Terror Bride' costume.

"'She had paraded around in it and said she was going to wear it in her next music video.

"'At first when people started telling her it was madness she just brushed it off.

"But when they mentioned that her actions could put her life at risk she decided to ditch it from her video and certainly won't be wearing it on stage."


Hat-tip: Insty, who pretends to be fooled too. Geeeeeeen -ius!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:55 PM | What do you think? [1]
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Cheers! (Yes, it's such great satire that I almost believed it!)

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 8, 2012 2:58 PM

Anniversary to Celebrate (?)

The (?) because I am of two minds about celebrating someone's death date. As a Christian it seems wrong--every human contains the imago dei, no? Yet, it seems undeniable that the world is a better place after the deaths of certain individuals; when Stalin went to Hell the wholesale murder of Soviet citizens slowed to a trickle.

Ernest "Che" Guevara certainly falls in this group. This little sicko, POS "revolutionary" took great joy in looking out his office window and watching defenseless men and boys shot down by firing squad--when he wasn't down there himself shooting them in the head.

Humberto Fontova gives us a nice concise summary on this, the 45th anniversay of "Che's" inglorious death. Indeed, his manner of death was particularly fitting:

His pathetic whimpering while dropping his fully-loaded weapons as two Bolivian soldiers approached him on Oct. 8 1967 ("Don't shoot!" I'm Che!" I'm worth more to you alive than dead!") proves that this cowardly, murdering swine was unfit to carry his victims' slop buckets.
A sickeningly "nuanced," at times even fawning Wikipaedia article actually tries to make his ironically painful execution by the Bolivian Army into some kind of last heroic stand, and includes this:
An array of notable individuals have lauded Guevara as a hero; for example, Nelson Mandela referred to him as "an inspiration for every human being who loves freedom", while Jean-Paul Sartre described him as "not only an intellectual but also the most complete human being of our age".

Well, this goes out to Mandela, Sartre, the Castro brothers, and every other "revolutionary" who saw human beings as objects of a World-Historical drama to be used, tortured and murdered: "Che's" end was cosmic justice; some of you will die in bed in your comfortable old age but I'd be awfully worried about what happens after that!

So yeah, I will raise a cold one tonight and think about the sorry dirty end of a sorry dirty bastard, and the drink will taste just a little better.

FETE

History Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 12:46 PM | What do you think? [2] | TrackBack
But jk thinks:

Cheers!

Posted by: jk at October 8, 2012 1:58 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Che died on Columbus day? (I jest.)

Blog brothers to the end, jk and I shall toast the demise of Che at Liberty on the Rocks this eve. (With the frosty brew I buy him in repayment of a gambling debt.)

Posted by: johngalt at October 8, 2012 3:57 PM

Ending the Cease Fire

Nothing like an argument over legalizing drugs to start an imbroglio at Three Sources. It's probably been more than a year since the last internecine brouhaha and The Refugee is not really interested in starting another one (there are so many other interesting polical issues at the moment.) Nevertheless, he's pretty sure this post violates the terms of the armistice.

The Denver Post is currently running a series that follows "Angel," a heroin addict living on the streets of Denver. She survives by panhandling $90+ dollars per day to get the needed "fixes" and sometimes a room. She will live on the goodness of strangers, (i.e., in their homes), until they learn that her stories are mostly hustles. Her signs asking for help are mostly lies. Life is getting from one fix to another, but according to the story, there is no evidence that she commits any crimes more serious than misdemeanor trespassing and the like. The Denver cops know her, but never arrest her for simple use or possession of drug paraphenalia. (From The Refugee's perspective, this is de facto legalization.) So far so good. No crimes against others. Should Angel not have the right to inject her body with whatever substance she chooses?

The Refugee argues that drug use is rarely a victimless crime and the case of Angel bears that out. It turns out that Angel was pregnant while using heroin, knowingly continued to inject herself and gave birth to a daughter with a rare form of dwarfism. Angel left the child with another junkie, who passed out from drug use while the child was in her care. Social services removed the child from Angel and the child is now in the care of a foster parent who specializes in children with special needs. (The Refugee could probably open a second front in this battle with the appropriateness of the State taking a child from its parent.)

The situation here is that Angel knowingly injected another human being, albeit In Vitro, with heroin. Should that be a crime? In The Refugee's opinion, yes - child endangerment, child abuse, assault and anything else a creative prosecutor can dream up. Angel's narcissistic negligence has condemned another human being to a life of difficulty, struggle and likely early death. The cost of the child's care will be borne by the Colorado taxpayer. The Refugee does not begrudge his tax dollars going to help this child, but it illustrates how Angel's personal choice impacts others.

Angel is not a victim, she is a perpetrator and should be serving time.

Internecine Posted by Boulder Refugee at 12:04 PM | What do you think? [4]
But jk thinks:

Fascinating and of course a tragic case. The consequentialist answer is that I will happily support the brand new crime of fetal-poisoning if you will help me dismantle the drug war. Alcohol is legal and superbly damaging to infants. Yet, post 21st Amendment, we do not proscribe its use by the entire population to protect the unborn.

Posted by: jk at October 8, 2012 1:48 PM
But Terri thinks:

And from the female perspective, would you suggest that drug laws should only apply to the ladies?

Maybe just the ladies between the ages of 14 and 55? Unless you carry a certificate showing you've had a hysterectomy?

Posted by: Terri at October 8, 2012 2:20 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Terri, the male who donates the sperm should also be held accountable for child abandonment if that is applicable. In this case, the father is serving eight years in prison for armed robbery to fund his drug habit. Should only men be held accountable for the consequences of their addiction? Certainly Angel has not.

Hopefully, we can have a Three Sources kumbaya moment and agree that drug users are not victims, as the media often portrays them, and at least hold them accountable for their actions against others, regardless of gender.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 8, 2012 3:07 PM
But jk thinks:

Nooo. No Kumbayas yet.

My point was that we should not legislate that all citizens be limited to a diet and health regimen appropriate for pre-natal care. Some people are very much not pregnant and can choose their risks accordingly.

If your purpose was to point out that some drug users are bad people, you succeeded but it was unnecessary. Yet I don't think it is commensurate with the ideals of ThreeSources that people's fundamental rights are dished out in accordance with their behavior.

I don't suggest legalization in reparation for users' victimhood -- I claim that we are owners of our own persons and sovereigns of our selves. If you wish to protect her harming of another individual, I suggested I was on board, though I am not too keen on locking up her mate -- that one's new. But to the extent she harms only herself, with heroin or a 17 oz. sweetened beverage, I have to leave the decision with her

Posted by: jk at October 8, 2012 3:42 PM

Quote of the Day

The Obama campaign has gone through its own version of seven stages of grief since Wednesday night. First it was Juan Williams denying Obama did a poor job, then they blamed everything from the altitude to Jim Lehrer to John Kerrey, and now they've settled on calling Mitt Romney a liar. -- Amelia Chasse

Howard Roark, Call your Office!

Blog friend Sugarchuck sends a link to a great Camille Paglia piece in the Wall Street Journal: How Capitalism Can Save Art. Paglia fans will know her columns resist brief, bloggy summarizations, but she decries the lack of vitality in visual art and holds the hallowed halls of academia culpable.

Unfortunately, too many artists have lost touch with the general audience and have retreated to an airless echo chamber. The art world, like humanities faculties, suffers from a monolithic political orthodoxy--an upper-middle-class liberalism far from the fiery antiestablishment leftism of the 1960s.

Avant-garde died with -- rather was killed by -- Andy Warhol, says Paglia. And nothing has taken its place. ThreeSourcers will also appreciate her commentary on craftsmanship (in the term's finest, gender ambiguous usage). Artists like Warhol were conversant in industrial arts: they made things, fixed things, and adapted things from the factory floor.

She has some kind, McCloskeyesque words for capitalism qua capitalism, then notes that the bright spot of art is the most commercial

Over the past 20 years, I have noticed that the most flexible, dynamic, inquisitive minds among my students have been industrial design majors. Industrial designers are bracingly free of ideology and cant. The industrial designer is trained to be a clear-eyed observer of the commercial world--which, like it or not, is modern reality.

Capitalism has its weaknesses. But it is capitalism that ended the stranglehold of the hereditary aristocracies, raised the standard of living for most of the world and enabled the emancipation of women. The routine defamation of capitalism by armchair leftists in academe and the mainstream media has cut young artists and thinkers off from the authentic cultural energies of our time.

Over the past century, industrial design has steadily gained on the fine arts and has now surpassed them in cultural impact. In the age of travel and speed that began just before World War I, machines became smaller and sleeker. Streamlining, developed for race cars, trains, airplanes and ocean liners, was extended in the 1920s to appliances like vacuum cleaners and washing machines. The smooth white towers of electric refrigerators (replacing clunky iceboxes) embodied the elegant new minimalism.

Art Posted by John Kranz at 10:04 AM | What do you think? [0]

October 7, 2012

Randucation

I feel a little slow for not figuring this out earlier. In fact, it took the reading of this Washington Times column for the tumblers to click. Mitt Romney took the President completely by surprise in the first debate. So much so that the President said his challenger's big idea is "never mind" what he's been saying before that night. Suddenly, as Kim Strassel noted, Romney had a "bigger" campaign. He was "Bold. Specific. Energetic." With "a smile, and a touch of humor." These are the attributes of a confident man. Confident of not just the efficacy of his policies, but their morality. Where have we heard this before? Paul Ryan.

And finally, in full agreement with Rand's writing style, comes a larger-than-life businessman-turned-politician and defends capitalism - not just on the grounds of its efficiency, but also morality - because taking people's earnings by force in order to subsidize something they disagree with, is fundamentally immoral.

There is only one reasonable explanation for the pragmatic corporate turnaround specialist suddenly discovering that capitalism is something to be boasted of, not distanced from.

And, just like in Rand's works of romantic realism, we finally saw the American president as he ought to be - a wise, understanding, and trustworthy father figure, who knows what he is doing and is willing to take charge, doesn't fear the responsibility, says what he believes, and does what he says. Next to him, the current "president" Obama appeared like a failing student before a finger-wagging disciplinarian grownup.

There's more.

Romney's well-calibrated radar impeccably detected every Obama's attempt to lie, distort, or manipulate reality. (...) With refreshing bluntness, Romney told the self-appointed economic manager-in-chief, "You pick the losers." That summed up Obama's economic policy of "fairness," with all the resulting government waste, abuse, cronyism, and corruption.
But, as dagny fairly observed, "Yes he is an improvement on Obama. No he is not an Atlas Shrugged caliber hero." But some of us, my father included, see this package deal as head and shoulders above anything we've been offered before, writing "Compared to Obama, Romney is JG squared."
To be completely honest, Romney's otherwise stellar, larger-than-life performance still contained traces of pandering to the moochers - sadly, a necessary ingredient in today's political games. Thanks for setting those rules, Democrats.

But, now that you know this, keep it under your hat, lest Chicago target not only Romney and Ryan, but also the easily caricatured Rand.

But nanobrewer thinks:


"You pick the losers."
That sums up my whole theory about liberals. Always keen to be seen as ... well, keen as well as clever (perhaps Intelligent) and hip they gravitate towards lost causes. How cool is it to support a winner, anyway?

This also makes liberal gubmint policies such an obvious play for the failing companies of the world. GM needs the gov't and gov't needs the publicity and to be wanted. Toyota doesn't need the government, neither does Apple.

"Compared to Obama, Romney is JG squared."
Wasn't it once said: to get a Reagan you need to have had a Carter?

Posted by: nanobrewer at October 8, 2012 1:29 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Great observation nb. John Maynard Keynes - The patron saint of business failure. Progressives pray his rosary daily.

Furthermore, well meaning voters reward them for it. This is precisely where Romney/Ryan can achieve real and productive change.

Posted by: johngalt at October 8, 2012 11:39 AM

Review Corner

The word of the day is "relitigate." As in: "It is too soon to relitigate the events and policies of the Bush Administration."

But one is forced to, in conquering Condoleezza Rice's No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington. Rip those wounds open, relive the good times and bad.

The next morning I went down to the gym to exercise and found myself in the company of Tony Blair, with whom the President was to meet that morning. "Well, George has stirred it up a bit," he said with characteristic British understatement. The President came in a few minutes later and talked about the speech, explaining why he'd made it and that he had intended it as a clear indication of his dedication to Middle East peace.

Yes, George stirred it up a bit. Rice is unflinchingly loyal to President Bush, Secretary Colin Powell, and to her team at State and the NSC. VP Cheney and Secretary Rumsfeld, conversely, get hung out to dry on occasion -- but not in the long knives style of many DC memoirs. She is respectful and considerate of their positions while she unabashedly advocates hers.

Rice mixes the personal with the historical. The book proceeds chronologically. Not quite President Carter's White House Diary, but she hews pretty close to the timeline. I don't know about the mix of personal. I'll confess that sometimes the book seems a little too long. And yet, many of the anecdotes are satisfying:

The spring of 2002 gave me one of the best imaginable reasons to practice. One day in March, my assistant Liz Lineberry had come in to say that Yo-Yo Ma was on the phone and wanted to speak to me. "You mean the cellist?" I asked. "I think so," she answered. It was indeed the greatest living cellist of our time, and he had a proposition for me. He was receiving the National Medal of the Arts on April 22 and wondered if perhaps we could play something together at the ceremony. We'd met at Stanford several years earlier, when he'd given a concert there. At the time his "Let's play together sometime" comment had seemed to be just a polite throwaway line. But now here he was, asking me, the failed piano major, to play with him.
[...]
The performance went very well. The President was beaming as he congratulated us after we finished. It was one of the most memorable days of my life. I'd come full circle and back to music. But I wasn't confused about what my real destiny was. I would never have played with Yo-Yo Ma had I stayed in music. He played with me because I was the national security advisor who could also play the piano. I had made a good decision when I changed my college major.

Other great personal glimpses relate to her achievement from her beginnings as "a poor black girl from Birmingham." The book begins with the '99 campaign, but she and Alma Powell reflect on their shared background in Buckingham Palace before retiring for the night.

One cannot help but compare her story to Michelle Obama's "first time I was proud of my Country" comment. I accept that the left has a different cannon for patriotism. Yet, one hears Rice celebrating the possible while others distain the challenge. She is moving as she describes becoming the 65th replacement for Thomas Jefferson.

With the President and my Aunts Gee and Mattie and Uncle Alto looking on, my friend and Watergate neighbor Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg read the oath of office. As I repeated it, I took in every word:
[...]
and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God. Then I thanked all those who'd helped me, especially the generations of Rays and Rices who'd always thought such a day possible. I glanced up at the portrait of Franklin. What would he have thought of this great-granddaughter of slaves and child of Jim Crow Birmingham pledging to defend the Constitution of the United States, which had infamously counted her ancestors "three-fifths" of a man? Somehow, I wanted to believe, Franklin would have liked history's turn toward justice and taken my appointment in stride.

Too soon to relitigate, but it is an engaging story of a woman I admire very much and a candid look at the inner workings of the Executive Branch. Four stars.

Review Corner Posted by John Kranz at 10:17 AM | What do you think? [0]

October 5, 2012

I don't feel so good...

"JK!" you inquire. "How are your Facebook friends reacting to the Bodhisattva's ass kicking sub-par debate performance?" "Are they distraught?"

No. The only thing I've heard mentioned is Big Bird.

As per usual -- if I may generalize -- they cannot visualize something's existing without government.

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 8:01 PM | What do you think? [2]
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Kinda looks like a target...

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 5, 2012 8:56 PM
But jk thinks:

Hahahahahhahaha!

Posted by: jk at October 6, 2012 10:16 AM

Good Ad

Hat-tip: Powerline

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 7:22 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Mmmmm, mmmm, mmmmmmmmmmmm.

Posted by: johngalt at October 6, 2012 12:12 PM

Right Wing Rag

Hat-tip:

UPDATE: Damn! Insty beat me...

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 5:48 PM | What do you think? [0]

Quote of the Day

All Hail Kim Strrassel!

Yet the painful reality is that the strategy Mr. Romney torpedoed on stage was the best Team Obama had. The president can't run on his legislation; it isn't liked. He can't run on the economy; it's terrible. Pivot to something sunny and big? Too late. And so the early indications from the Obama campaign are that it instead intends to go past Romney caricatures and straight to character assassination. -- Kim Strassel


2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 3:49 PM | What do you think? [2]
But johngalt thinks:

Kim's conclusion is also quoteworthy:

Mr. Romney's Denver performance is the (now proven) model for how to answer these coming attacks. Bold. Specific. Energetic. A smile, and a touch of humor. The bigger the Romney campaign is, the smaller (and clothes-free) Mr. Obama's will seem.
Posted by: johngalt at October 7, 2012 5:34 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:


> how to answer these coming attacks.

Thank goodness the Obamanites waited until their brand is at a nearly completely discredited state. I think they can only hope for a "Macaca" moment. Good luck trying that (or anything else, really) with America's leading CEO and an unbelievably squeaky clean person. Luckily for the constitution and my children OBH's cronies are a clueless and lackluster lot, as only a crony-fied system can supply.

Bold. Specific. Energetic. A smile, and a touch of humor.

Mmmm, yes. {ahem} who says he isn't a Reagan Republican? Let's hope he keeps appointing undervalued, powerful assets like Ryan.

Posted by: nanobrewer at October 8, 2012 1:44 AM

Hope, Change, Character Assassination

First I should caution that this report comes from a person who claims to be a "veteran White House reporter." Aren't those guys all bought and paid for?

In a vicious and personal assault rarely conducted at the highest level of U.S. politics, White House senior adviser David Plouffe repeatedly told reporters aboard Air Force One that Romney was "dishonest." With the president of the United States in a cabin just a few steps away, his top adviser pushed out the new campaign theme that the man who had bested him in the debate Wednesday night is an untrustworthy scoundrel.

Happy Days are Here Again!

While some of the president's more ardent supporters are dancing about the September Jobs report (you can't spell bullshit without BLS...), James Pethokoukis peers a bit more deeply into the data:

1. Yes, the U-3 unemployment rate fell to 7.8%, the first time it has been below 8% since January 2009. But that's only due to a flood of 582,000 part-time jobs. As the Labor Department noted:
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) rose from 8.0 million in August to 8.6 million in September. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job.

2. And take-home pay? Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by just 1.8 percent. When you take inflation into account, wages are flat to down.

3. The broader U-6 rate -- which takes into account part-time workers who want full-time work and lots of discouraged workers who've given up looking -- stayed unchanged at 14.7%. That's a better gauge of the true unemployment rate and state of the American labor market.

But: HOORAY! 582,000 Americans found a part-time job at low pay! Woohoo! And that Romney fellow insists things are not going well.

2012 Posted by John Kranz at 2:14 PM | What do you think? [3]
But johngalt thinks:

If you believe, after reading this jobs report, that unemployment is actually down that much I have some renewable energy stocks I'd like to sell you. They are for a very progressive tech company that invented a process to produce electricity through non-combustion of magical unicorn farts. (It even consumes carbon in the process!)

Posted by: johngalt at October 5, 2012 3:34 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Remember that old adage we learned in high school about graphs? "First, draw your graph, then plot the points you need to get there"? Yes, lesson learned; it's happening here. 783 new kilojobs, in this economy? Not gonna happen, Cap'n.

The Preezy and Hilda Solis sat down and figured how many jobs they needed to pretend were created in order for the U-3 number to get down to something that started with a 7, to counter the disaster that was the first debate. They reached down into the Magic Bag-O-Distraction, and their choices were cook the books on unemployment or launch an assault against Libya or Syria. Their third option - count on Joe Biden to trounce Ryan in their debate and save the ticket - is taking 100-to-1 money on the Vegas line.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 5, 2012 5:50 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Excellent analysis KA. And being so much further from Vegas than are you, I hadn't noticed the 'Biden outwits Ryan' line. But I will disagree with you on one point: This October card had been stacked into the deck long before President Greek Columns waltzed into Romney's chainsaw.

Proof? I have no proof, other than that the President's campaign lies at every opportunity, on matters as important as an al Qaeda terrorist attack on the anniversary of 9/11 that murdered four American government employees including a freaking ambassador, and then accuses his opponent of being a "dishonest, untrustworthy scoundrel." [chutzpa noun Example sentence: Still stinging from rebuke, the politician accused his opponent of employing the very tactic that he had relied upon for his own very successful political career, thus illustrating an unmitigated display of chutzpah.]

But it has the feel of a dud. Too little, in answer to an epic fail on live TV with seventy-six million watching.

Posted by: johngalt at October 6, 2012 12:02 PM

October 4, 2012

Five Best Beers (BR Style)

5. Sam Adams Lager

4. Alaskan [Amber] Porter. You hear me, Porter

3. Anything out of a tap in an Irish Pub, but only if you are in Ireland

2. Whatever you've got in the fridge

1. The one in my hand

Five Best Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 6:20 PM | What do you think? [8]
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Originally (Beethoven post below) I said "Amber" but brother jk said "Porter." Ma taught me to respect my eld.., er bet.., er host so I came up with a witty linguistic compromise.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 4, 2012 7:37 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Okay, off the top of my head:

5. Coors Banquet

4. Breckenridge Vanilla Porter

3. Odell's Five Barrel Pale Ale

2. Guiness Pub Draught can (anywhere, any temperature!)

1. Andechs' Spezial Hell

"Genuss fur leib und seele!"

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 7:43 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Oh my, I love it when you talk German.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 4, 2012 8:13 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Cheers! Prosst!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 5, 2012 12:15 PM
But jk thinks:

I love it when he speaks Serbo-Croation.

Posted by: jk at October 5, 2012 12:30 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

A Teutonic-American such as yourself should recognize that one!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 5, 2012 12:56 PM

Presidential Debate Taiwanese Recap

Since KA still hasn't been trained to include the ThreeSources hashtag (repeat after me: #3src, #3src) and since some people don't know what they're missing on Twitter, and since it is AWESOME funny, I'm promoting this to embed.

But Keith Arnold thinks:

Keith Arnold ‏@masterescrow (Sept. 13)

He's Nero, with mom jeans instead of a toga, and with golf clubs instead of a fiddle. http://is.gd/AHkAJe #3src

Keith Arnold ‏@masterescrow (Aug. 3)

H/T to John Kranz: I want a Slurpee so I can watch Preezy Mom Jeans push this out of the ditch - http://is.gd/oXahFS #3src

Keith Arnold ‏@masterescrow (Jul. 27)

@berkeleysquare None of the good stores would honor Spain's credit card. Bargain-basement Olympic uniforms. #3src

I try, man... some people have a way with technology, and some people are just me. To quote that great American philosopher Al Yankovich, "I'm just technologically-impaired." I'm clearly doing something wrong, 'cause mine never seem to appear.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 4, 2012 6:02 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I think you're doing it right, when you do it. You just don't do it on the Tweets that you know I'll find hilarious, like this one.

Just a tweak, bro. Hey, I had to intro it somehow!

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 6:26 PM

America: Frack Yeah!

How many times have we heard the left make baseless claims that Big Oil uses its money and influence to stamp out competition wherever it can, and thereby maximize their own profits? Investors Business Daily printed an editorial yesterday that now, finally, substantiates that claim. But it's not what you might think. In this case "Big Oil" equals Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Russia's state-owned oil monopolies.

Venezuela's state Foundation National Cinematheque has been financially linked to "Gasland," a 2011 anti-fracking documentary whose aim was to paint fracking in the U.S. as dangerous.

(...)

This week, the Heritage Foundation's Lachlan Markey found that United Arab Emirates-owned "Image Media Abu Dhabi" financed "Promised Land," a Matt Damon film that shows U.S. oil and gas companies as greedy behemoths out to poison America's small towns.

(...)

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has been accused of financing radical environmentalist groups through foundations to undercut oil sands production in Canada, which is America's top supplier.

If you have to ask why they oppose American energy production, here is the answer:

All this signals something big is at stake in global power politics: fracking, which threatens petrotyrants as no nuclear weapon ever has. The Gulf states, Venezuela and Russia derive their power solely from their dominance in energy production, not by their economies.

If fracking and the combination of investment, high tech, expertise and geography enable the U.S. to produce natural gas at $3 a unit, while Russia can only do it at $10, the threat is obvious.

But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Yes, yes, YES. American inexpensive energy explosion coming even if Obama gets reelected...he'll try to stop it, of course, but I don't think he can. Private land still exists!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 4, 2012 3:21 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Ah, the idealism of private property. Don't bet that he can't stop it. Private property owners don't own the air, don't own the underground water, don't own the snail darters and wooley amoebas.

Good NED man, have you not read the book? (He asks, knowingly.)

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 3:36 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

I will revise and expand my remarks...I don't think Obama in his second term will have the political capital to kill the American energy revolution. Congress won't let him and a lot of union folks are counting on it. His theoretical Gaiaean Marxism will clash too much with reality. Objective reality!

Thankfully, I think we have a good chance of a different President who will be pushing the car DOWN the track instead of putting on the brakes as hard as possible. But as in "the book," there is the possibility that Wesley Mouch will be appointed "Czar" with the power to screw things up. I don't totally discount that.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 4, 2012 3:51 PM

Candor? Wasn't that a place in Lord of the Rings?

The AP is running interference for the President, but I think they sent in the second string:

DENVER (AP) -- President Barack Obama is challenging Republican Mitt Romney's candor the morning after their first debate, saying: "If you want to be president, you owe the American people the truth."

Candor? I think Julie Pace is looking for the word "probity" -- or perhaps "magic squirrel."

Whatever. All that is important is that -- when the Governor is not around to correct outrageous lies about him -- the President has a platform to spew them.

UPDATE: Blog friend Terri shares a quote that seems appropos:

Tom Stemberg, Co-founder and former CEO of Staples said to Neil Cavuto, following the debate, "President Obama is terrific on his feet when no one is challenging him to the facts."

But Keith Arnold thinks:

You're thinking of Twodor and Fordor.

"If you want to be president, you owe the American people the truth." There's a statement with which Obama ought to be - figuratively - beaten with strenuously about the head and shoulders. It takes an awful lot of testicular fortitude for him to make that statement to anybody.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 4, 2012 2:04 PM
But johngalt thinks:

In the same spirit, did anyone else hear President Obama say "budgets matter" last night?

The president is well known for his usage of the strawman logical fallacy, and it works well when there's no rebuttal. Last night was the first time anyone dared say to him, "How about a little fire, scarecrow!"

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 2:26 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Headline... Brother KA... coffee... keyboard....

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 4, 2012 2:31 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Well, if we're going to extend the meme, would that cast Obama in the role of Sorhed, the evil ruler of the land of Fordor and master of the foul Narcs?

http://amzn.com/0451452615

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 4, 2012 3:28 PM

When You've Lost Yahoo...

Jeff Greenfield:

Yes, it was as bad as it seemed.

No, it wasn't Jim Lehrer's fault for letting Romney expound; Obama got more time (four minutes more) than Romney. Besides, it's not the moderator's job to call a debater out on questionable assertions. It's the opponent's job.

Yes, it wasn't the best atmospherics for Obama to look down, purse his lips, appear distracted, while Romney was attentive, engaged, relaxed. But this was much more than atmospherics. This was about one candidate who came with a frame for the evening, and who was prepared to engage on every question; and another who, perhaps because of his documented faith in his own abilities, felt he could wing it with snatches of familiar verbiage.


I was happy to wake up and find that: a) it was not a dream, Governor Romney really did stomp President Obama; and, b) that it was accepted across the board and not just what I thought or some right wing bloggers.

It goes back to what Taranto always says: the left is sometimes poorly served by media bias. Romney knew every thing coming at him. "Specifics? Jim I'm coming after you and that big homosexual yellow puppet guy!"

The President, conversely, was surprised that anybody in this great nation was at all discontented with his brilliant leadership.

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 10:56 AM | What do you think? [9]
But jk thinks:

Sarah Hoyt adds: Also, the sun was in the president's eyes.

Posted by: jk at October 4, 2012 12:18 PM
But Terri thinks:

That was the wrong link. :-(
The one of Gore was off of Drudge and the Weekly Standard.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/gores-blames-altitude-obamas-debate-woes_653613.html

Posted by: Terri at October 4, 2012 12:46 PM
But jk thinks:

I thought I just lost patience on the other one. But I enjoyed Excitable Andy's despair.

Then again, I just got in from Iowa, might be a little light headed still...

Posted by: jk at October 4, 2012 1:11 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Oh, great. Way to disclose the undisclosed location!

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 2:28 PM
But jk thinks:

Clearly not going to leave a paper trail. I returned from a different airport than I flew into. One does not simply walk into Iowa...

Posted by: jk at October 4, 2012 6:15 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

... but when one departs from Iowa, one does so at warp speed.

http://is.gd/PcNZSw

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 4, 2012 7:29 PM

Coffeehousin'



Coffeehouse

Kindhearted Woman Blues


"Travelled to an undisclosed location to record this great Robert Johnson tune with my friend Sugarchuck."



Live at the Coffeehouse dot Com


Live at the Coffeehouse dot Com


Progressive Fear and Loathing

Andrew Sullivan:

10.29 pm. How is Obama's closing statement so fucking sad, confused and lame? He choked. He lost. He may even have lost the election tonight.

A host of sadness compiled by Politico.

And cognitive dissonance in Hollywood:

Alec Baldwin: CBS analysis says Romney stomped Obama with undecided voters

Samuel L. Jackson: What Really happened tonite?! NOBODY changed who theyre voting for!! NOBODY!!!

But don't get over confident, cautions Palin.

But Jk thinks:

I'm never in danger of overconfidence, but that was as good as it could have been for Gov. Romney. It made the Raiders game look close.

Posted by: Jk at October 4, 2012 6:52 AM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Judging how the Broncos whupped Oakland (and congratulations, Broncos fans!), I'd say you'd found a good metaphor.

I was actually going to say Obama got a call from Mark Sanchez late last night, saying "I know how it feels, man." You beat me to it...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 4, 2012 11:55 AM
But johngalt thinks:

You know what Romney should have said last night? Exactly what he said.

Dennis Miller: "The president had better hope that a kicked ass is covered under Obamacare."

Posted by: johngalt at October 4, 2012 12:02 PM

Political Prey

Chris Matthews was not impressed by President Messiah's performance.

"He was like, 'Oh an hour and half? I think I can get through this thing. And I don't even look at this guy.' Whereas Romney -- I love the split-screen -- staring at Obama, addressing him like prey. He did it just right. 'I'm coming at an incumbent. I got to beat him. You've got to beat the champ and I'm going to beat him tonight. And I don't care what this guy, the moderator, whatever he thinks he is because I'm going to ignore him," Matthews said. "What was Romney doing?" Matthews asked. "He was winning."

October 3, 2012

The Day After

Briefly, I can't disagree with anything here:

Nov. 7, The grim day after

The political currents will be powerful, in large part because of the lessons each side will take from defeat. On the right, where much of the antipathy toward Barack Obama is driven by the notion that he is both a bad president and one who rejects the notion of American exceptionalism, there will be acute frustration about a nation heading toward a distinctly un-American future -- a trail already blazed by western Europe.

If Obama loses, the nation will be left with a generation of young voters whose formative political experiences will be rooted in the bitterness and division of the Obama era, a time which began with unreasonably high hopes and will have ended with a spectacular defeat. Given the subtle but persistent role that race has played in this election -- and the stark likely divide in racial voting patterns -- an Obama loss also seems likely to trigger a painful and possibly corrosive national discussion about a subject that America rarely handles well.

I can handle the second scenario quite nicely myself, but the disappointment of others will be...palpable. If you live in certain locales, might I suggest a couple extra boxes of ammo and some sturdy shutters? Just the Boy Scout in me talking.

Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 5:36 PM | What do you think? [2]
But Keith Arnold thinks:

For a just slightly more optimistic treatment of November 7, may I suggest (SERIOUS LANGUAGE WARNING):

http://is.gd/TXYQoD

I find it telling that Politico's description of the basis for the right's disappointment would be over objective policy issues, while the left's is all about hopes and feelings. I'm stunned that the admission is there that the right's rejection of the SCOAMF is because "... he is both a bad president and one who rejects the notion of American exceptionalism..." and not because our imputed racism and the color his skin.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 3, 2012 7:50 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Excellent link, sir! I realize I hadn't looked at that site for a long time, glad to see it's going strong.

I find it fascinating that he and I have chosen a different candidate whose victory might require loading the firearms.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 3, 2012 8:02 PM

#FF

Okay, so it isn't Friday, but I am home and digging through all the mail. And I bet all ThreeSourcers will all want to follow blog friend EE:

The Mayans were right about the end of the world. This week's proof, I've joined Twitter: @RebelEconProf.


Quote of the Day

A bon mot from a good friend of this blog. If the owner wishes attribution, I will happily update the post:

Here is the line that I would like to hear from Romney tonight: "Don't worry, Mr. President, if I am elected, I won't blame my predecesor for anything that happens during my term."

2012 Election Posted by John Kranz at 4:20 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

"Like."

There's more [very good] advice for Mitt over at The American Thinker.

And I'll add one more of my own-

I know a lot of voters are disappointed with our country's two-party political system. Many of you are so fed up with Republicans and Democrats that you're planning to vote for a candidate from one of the other parties. 'American politics is broken' you say, 'and its time for a new party with new ideas.' But before you do, know this: Voting for someone who can't win won't change anything. There is only one name on this year's ballot that can change America's future, and make it bright again. That name is Mitt Romney.
Posted by: johngalt at October 3, 2012 4:43 PM

Olympic Gold Medalist Views Atlas Shrugged Part 2 Premiere


October 2, 2012

LIVE STREAM - Atlas Shrugged Part 2 World Premiere

Scheduled for 1830 EDT today.

UPDATE [1847 EDT]: It works! Intermittently. Please be patient. Harmon Kaslow is carrying his Macbook around and wirelessly broadcasting to the known universe. Apparently there's an actual cameraman trying to get set up as well. Perhaps that link will be less fragile. Rather amazing, actually.

UPDATE [1855 EDT]: Harmon came on for 30 seconds to apologize that the live stream wasn't going to be possible. The good news is we still get the new scene, an extended version of the September 5 teaser. See second video frame below.

CORRECTION: I'm pretty sure it was John Aglialoro. I'm fairly certain it wasn't Harmon Kaslow.

UPDATE [10.3.12 1545 EDT]: Well, live blogging certainly proved to be a perilous activity for me. A couple more corrections are in order. It wasn't John Aglialoro live casting from a Macbook, it was Scott Desapio (I am told.) More importantly, I may have given the impression that this video was/is a broadcast of the Atlas Shrugged Part 2 film itself. It was not. It was live coverage of activities surrounding the film's premiere at a theater in Washington D.C. So you aren't missing anything in the first video frame, but the second frame is a brand new release of a 3 minute scene from the new movie. - That should cover it.



Video streaming by Ustream

Hank Rearden meets the "wet nurse." The wet nurse is the central character of one of my favorite scenes in the book.


And Now, at Long Last: The Greatest Song Ever: "Ode An Die Freude"

I apologize for the lack of posting over the last few weeks. I have been keeping up with the doings here and making the occasional comment, but have had little original to say, and thus said little.

Previously:

The Almost Five Best Songs of All Time

Number 5: "Sunday Morning Coming Down"

Number 4: "All the Things You Are"

Number 3: "Toxicity", System of a Down

Number 2: "Stardust"

But now, at last and certainly none too soon:

The Greatest Song of All Time!

"Ode An Die Freude" (Fourth Movement, Symphony No. 9), Ludwig von Beethoven

(Lyrics originally a poem written by Friedrich Schiller)

For those whose German is not quite perfect, here are the full English lyrics:

Joy, bright spark of divinity, Daughter of Elysium, Fire-inspired we tread Thy sanctuary.

Thy magic power re-unites
All that custom has divided,
All men become brothers
Under the sway of thy gentle wings.

I could hear it a thousand times, and it would still cause the tears to spring.

And having said all that words can express, let us be reminded that there are things only the notes can say. For now, we will say no more,

Five Best Music Posted by Ellis Wyatt at 1:31 PM | What do you think? [13]
But dagny thinks:

Damn, I married a troglodyte even if he does prefer Sam Adams to Bud Light. However, the part of this troglodytes are most likely to recognize starts at about 3:20.

Posted by: dagny at October 3, 2012 5:01 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Thanks Dagny! That's right. A few notes: The conductor is a totally cool dude, note how he sings along with the Chorus. The bassists are all using the German bow. How surprising...

Sam Adams is my favorite beer, too! Well, the Alaskan Amber is tied. Do you folks have that available in CO? Give it a try.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 3, 2012 5:24 PM
But jk thinks:

Alaskan Porter. Please. What in the holy hell is the matter with you people?

Thanks to brother ew for an eclectic and enjoyable top five. At the risk of taking it another direction, I noticed an interesting problem with the Beethoven piece. Part of it was travel, but it is difficult to apportion 14 minutes of serious time in a good environment. Your other pieces -- nice as they were -- were easy to take a few minutes off work and listen. This piece required an appointment.

Life.

Posted by: jk at October 3, 2012 6:33 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Thanks for listening and taking the time, everyone. Yes, as Dagny noted the core "song" starts at 3:20 or so. It's really just a couple of minutes, but I couldn't bear to leave the rest out...the first bars recap the opening of the first movement.

I think the beer discussion deserves a post of its own.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 3, 2012 7:27 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Top five beers?

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 4, 2012 11:57 AM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

AB-SO-LUTE-LY!!! Also, what Ben Franklin said.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at October 4, 2012 2:55 PM

October 1, 2012

Liberty on the Rocks

Despite being interested in the speakers, I've missed the last couple of events. Not this time. Hey everyone, get a babysitter if you have to. [Not today, but a week from today.]

Join us on Monday, October 8th, where your special guest speaker will be Dr. Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute, who will be discussing his new book, Free Market Revolution: How Ayn Rand's ideas Can End Big Government. After Dr. Brook's presentation there will be short Q&A and a book signing, followed by the opportunity to network with other local liberty supporters. Come for the event, stay for the food and networking - you're guaranteed a great evening no matter what!

This event is open to the public, you're welcome to bring friends!

Ralphie's Sports Tavern 585 E. SOUTH BOULDER RD., Louisville, Colorado 80027

I've been planning to buy a copy of Mr. Brook's new book. This is a perfect opportunity. And with luck, I'll be able to buy that beer and payoff a year-old bet. (Which, it seems, may have been a good bet but in the wrong year.)

Colorado Posted by JohnGalt at 5:02 PM | What do you think? [4]
But Jk thinks:

Wow, that is quite a "get;" see y'all there. Anybody know if he'll have books? Or should I order one from Amazon?

Posted by: Jk at October 2, 2012 6:46 AM
But johngalt thinks:

The email invitation said that copies of the book will be available for purchase.

The last time I heard Yaron Brook speak was around the time of Iraq War II. (He was not a fan.) It was in a CU auditorium and I did not actually get to speak to him. That will likely change next Monday.

Posted by: johngalt at October 2, 2012 11:49 AM
But dagny thinks:

Seems like it might be a good idea to get our own books just in case there aren't enough available there.

Posted by: dagny at October 2, 2012 1:18 PM
But Jk thinks:

He might get a bigger %% if we buy them out of Yaron's 1983 Pontiac.

Posted by: Jk at October 2, 2012 2:16 PM

J - E - T - S Jets! Jets! Jets!

But Jk thinks:

I'll wear my Tebow jersey with newfound pride!

Posted by: Jk at October 1, 2012 5:30 PM

The Venezuelan Model

Anyone who paid attention to the 2012 Republican Presidential Primary campaign is familiar with the "Chilean Model" for Social Security. It was hailed as an example of a plan that should also be adopted in the United States. Presently, another South American nation is in the midst of a new experiment. This time, to replace its once popular dictatorial, legal bounds stretching, anti-corporate, redistributionist, in the name of equality leftist president. That nation is Venezuela.

Capriles has run a focused, disciplined campaign, visiting over 250 cities and connecting with voters with a consistent, positive message.

Capriles tells Venezuela's handout-dependent voters that his model will be that of Lula da Silva, Brazil's democratic socialist president who cut taxes, made oil drilling a priority, preserved the social safety net and brought people out of poverty through jobs.

Harkening to Lula worked well in nearby Peru, getting Ollanta Humala elected president last year and may just work in Venezuela, too.

Capriles also fiercely denounces the crime, corruption, inflation and fiscal incontinence of the Chavez regime. This seems to be resonating with voters, who've made a connection to the massive government spending and their own impoverishment.

The parallels to the Obama regime are striking, with "fiscal incontinence" the most glaring.

Will Hugo Chavez get the boot from voters on Oct. 7? Sure looks like it, with two polls flipping toward his opponent, Henrique Capriles Radonski, and markets signaling they believe it. It's about time.

The same story also offers a sure-fire indicator to watch for evidence that a Romney election is likely:

A Venezuelan consultant in Washington tells IBD that Chavez's lieutenants aren't campaigning for him and various supporters are beginning to abandon him and attempting to cut deals with the Capriles camp in a bid to avoid prosecution for corruption.
But johngalt thinks:

Here's hoping that tomorrow's debate performance will follow this model [denouncing the crime, corruption, inflation and fiscal incontinence of the Obama regime] and that he'll carry a consistent, positive message of change FORWARD into saturation appearances in Ohio. (Attention to Colorado seems more than adequate.)

Posted by: johngalt at October 2, 2012 11:56 AM

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