February 28, 2013

Berlin Boulder Airlift

Unprecedented?

"BOULDER AIRLIFT" PMAGs for Coloradans

During this period of high demand, and with the possibility of pending state legislation, we at Magpul are taking steps to ensure that responsible Colorado residents who want to own standard capacity magazines have the opportunity to do so. To meet this need, we have set up a process for CO residents to purchase limited quantities of magazines from our website.


In order to participate in this program, go to: http://store.magpul.com/member_register

Create your login account and click the “Register” button to submit. Once you receive a “Membership Confirmation” e-mail, forward it to ColoradoPMAGS@magpul.com with your name, the email used to sign up for the account, and your CO address.

BOTH YOUR BILLING AND SHIPPING ADDRESSES MUST BE IN COLORADO!

Once we verify your CO residency (this process can take up to a week due to the large quantities of emails we receive) you will be added to an authorized Special Purchase group, which will allow you to purchase select magazines from a limited access section of our website. You will then receive a notification e-mail stating that you have been added to this group, and instructions for placing your order will be included.

If you already have a login account at Magpul.com, please just send an e-mail to ColoradoPMAGS@magpul.com including your name, the email used to sign up for the account, and your CO address, then the process will proceed as above.

NOTE: WE CANNOT SHIP 30 ROUND MAGAZINES TO ADDRESSES WITHIN DENVER DUE TO THE EXISTING CITY BAN.

All sales are subject to our normal compliance checks.

Gun Rights Posted by JohnGalt at 4:15 PM | What do you think? [0]

Meanwhile, in Buffy News

And you thought ThreeSourcers had an exclusive franchise on world daughter production (Mazel Tov to dagny and johngalt!)

Mercedes McNabb steals a page from the playbook:

Daughter Vaunne Sydney arrived at 5:50 p.m. in Greenbrae, Calif., weighing in at 6 lbs., 12 oz. and measuring 19.5 inches long.

Television Posted by John Kranz at 3:57 PM | What do you think? [8]
But Terri thinks:

LOL

"Both mom and baby are resting peacefully together!" the actress's rep says. "They are overjoyed with their new angel, and look forward to introducing her to everyone very soon."

Posted by: Terri at March 1, 2013 9:51 AM
But jk thinks:

"Both mom and baby are resting peacefully together!" the bloggers' rep says. "They are overjoyed with their new angel, and look forward to introducing her to everyone very soon."

Posted by: jk at March 1, 2013 10:24 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Still weighing competing bids from the tabloids...

Posted by: johngalt at March 1, 2013 11:56 AM
But dagny thinks:

Anyone who thinks Mom does much, "resting peacefully," in the first few weeks is unfamiliar with the situation. "Passed out exhausted," is more accurate.

Posted by: dagny at March 1, 2013 6:27 PM
But jk thinks:

You mean to say that hundreds of years of Romance-era oil paintings are all lies? I'm hurt!

Rest up, Mom, and congrats.

Posted by: jk at March 1, 2013 7:34 PM
But Mrs. Keith Arnold thinks:

Just when I thought Bruce Willis and Demi Moore had a lock on the pretentious baby names market -- Vaunne Sydney? Really? But then again, that is so Harmony isn't it?

Posted by: Mrs. Keith Arnold at March 4, 2013 6:46 PM

"Renewable" Electricity - Even More Expensive than we Thought

Being more expensive sources for electrical generation than just about every alternative, wind and solar generated electricity never became a sizable player in the electrical market until goverment made it illegal to not use them. Now that government's "Renewable Energy Mandates" have nearly achieved their goal of 33% of all domestic generation the irregularity of their supply (at night or on calm days) has become the gorilla in the room. IBD Editorial:

One is that people pay for power on the assumption that it's there when they need it, not when the weather pleases. Another is that unreliable sources have to be backed up by reliable ones.

And here's the most expensive truth: The more you spend to subsidize unreliable renewables, the more you need to spend on backup power as well.

Either that, or you learn to live with routine brownouts.

Given the premise that Americans will not settle for the same availability of electric power seen in postwar Iraq, this means that the "replaced" natural gas generating plants will have to be maintained, in service and on-line, as backup to the fickle and failure prone generators preferred by the Church of Human Sacrifice. But since those plants aren't selling power on a daily basis, their existence must be ... class, class, anyone, Buehler? Subsidized.

So one big subsidy — for renewable energy — may end up begetting another — for backup energy made necessary by the over-reliance on renewables.

And both will come out of consumers' pockets, through either higher power bills, higher taxes or higher prices for goods and services charged by businesses saddled with higher rates and taxes of their own.


Otequay of the Ayday

"There are many fine people who are concerned with the environment. Indeed, we all should be. But the movement known as environmentalism is not only a false religion, it is one that allows human sacrifice."

I would be more impressed had this passed the lips of an A-list Hollywood celeb - Darryl Hannah is clearly more than one could hope for, being too far gone into the mist - but it is still a good quote from a good article by fellow traveler Dennis Prager.

But jk thinks:

Methinks my blog brother might enjoy Walter Russell Mead today.

The epidemic of power outages and "rolling blackouts" which nearly shut down California in the early 2000s may be returning. Back then, the culprits were unscrupulous energy providers like Enron and a poorly-thought out process of deregulation. This time, renewable energy would be to blame, as the state has pushed to increase the use of solar and wind energy without ensuring that there is enough traditional power generation to keep the grid stable on cloudy, windless days.

Posted by: jk at February 28, 2013 2:37 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Yep. See related post above.

This Central Planning business is just so complicated! How can anybody know everything about every industry? Why can't we just find a way to have experts in every field make every decision based on all of the factors, taken into account at once and evaluated to arrive at the best course of action? And to make sure they do their jobs well and act wisely we could even make their paychecks depend on getting it right!

But I digress. Clearly there is no such utopian system on earth.

Posted by: johngalt at February 28, 2013 3:25 PM

Sequestergeddon Quote of the Day

But if Obama can't even convince his cheerleaders in the press that modest spending restraint will doom the country, why should anyone believe he's having more success with the public at large?

Today's IBD Editorial: Is Obama Losing His Media Allies Over The Sequester?

But jk thinks:

Let us hope. Trusting our Fourth Estate to choose the side of less government seems too much to ask. L'affaire Woodward is interesting -- might they discover some of the integrity that drove them into J-School? Loved this:

The AP, for example, found no evidence to back up administration claims about teacher layoffs. It also pointed out that the airline industry thinks the sequester will have "no major impact on air travel," and that various numbers bandied about by Obama were "thrown out into thin air with no anchor."

Posted by: jk at February 28, 2013 12:13 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I have long believed that the shame threshold of most journalists is lower than that of the President. Jake Tapper is the first big name I remember having shown skepticism. Watergate Woodward is by far a more significant crack in the media's inverse-reality force field.

Posted by: johngalt at February 28, 2013 2:08 PM

End Times

Dogs & Cats living together, Michelle Obama's guest editorial on healthy foods in the Wall Street Journal.

Perhaps the Mayans were close...

UPDATE: Heh -- All Hail Taranto!

taranto130228.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 10:09 AM | What do you think? [0]

February 27, 2013

Reverse iatrogenic alert!

You'd have to get stuck on an elevator to complete Randy Barnett's 20 page Chapman Law Review article. Still, download a PDF for nothin' and email it to your Kindle.

I find it to be the most complete, brief description of what I believe. I think I will float a link on Facebook. A taste:

What happens in a social democracy when 51% of the voters
discover it can vote to "redistribute" the wealth of--or impose
their moral vision upon--the other 49%? Or more likely, what
happens when political entrepreneurs inspire, say, 80% of the
electorate to confiscate the income or wealth of the 20%? When
this happens, how will social democracy preserve the individual
sovereignty that the Third Way approach concedes is needed as a
baseline? What realistic mechanisms are proposed by advocates
of the Third Way superimposition of social justice or legal
moralism on the libertarian rights of property and contract to
ensure against this outcome?

I have been teaching law and writing about liberty for over
thirty years now, and I have yet to hear any such proposal from
any of my colleagues. It would be genuinely enlightening to hear
how advocates of supplanting or overriding the libertarian rights
that define individual sovereignty propose to limit the coercive
powers they seek to the particular vision of social justice or
morality that they offer to justify this claim of power. It would be
equally enlightening to hear proponents of social democracy tell
us how it will not eventually devour the individual rights that
provide the foundation for their additional schemes of
redistribution or morals regulation. Is this not a reasonable
request?


Hat-tip: Insty

Elevator Talk Posted by John Kranz at 4:20 PM | What do you think? [4]
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The Refugee respectfully submits this definition of "social justice": Taking from the few to buy votes from the many.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 27, 2013 5:38 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

...and thanks for making him look up "iatrogenic."

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 27, 2013 5:42 PM
But johngalt thinks:

That was FDR's version of "social justice" BR. Obama's is "Buying votes from as many as you need to in order to take as much from as many as you can." To Barack, FDR was a piker.

Posted by: johngalt at February 27, 2013 5:49 PM
But jk thinks:

The Refugee is forgiven for missing a Review Corner. It happens; we understand.

(And the headline should be "inverse iatrogenic" -- ThreeSources apologizes for the error.)

Posted by: jk at February 27, 2013 5:52 PM

Pollution-Free Coal Power

Detractors like to say "Clean Coal doesn't exist" but Dr. Liang-Shih Fan is one of many scientists laboring, and succeeding, in accomplishing it.

Liang-Shih Fan, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, and director of the Clean Coal Lab, has just completed a 203 hour test of a radical new way of obtaining energy from coal. Typical coal-fired power plants burn coal to boil water, and run the resultant steam through turbines to produce electricity. Fan's process, a new technology called "coal-direct chemical looping," does not burn the coal. Instead, it chemically converts coal to heat in a sealed reactor chamber. Tiny iron oxide beads help to deliver oxygen to the coal particles, which are then cycled through an airflow chamber for re-oxygenation, then run back through the reaction chamber. This is the "looping" in the technology's name. The process gives off no air pollution, and the captured carbon dioxide is ninety-nine percent pure, enough to make it a valuable commodity.

The test, which was run on a lab-sized reactor, produced a continuous twenty-five kilowatts of power.

25 KW! That could power a house! Or a car! Oh wait - carbon dioxide? Hasn't the EPA decided that carbon dioxide, necessary for plant growth, is a pollutant? Never mind. Back to windmills and bicycles.

But Alexc thinks:

I was pleased to see that there is a NASCAR stock car sponsored by "Clean Coal"

This is good news.

Posted by: Alexc at February 28, 2013 2:56 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I thought so too brother, but when I saw it wrecked last weekend I couldn't help wondering what kind of smear ad the Church of Human Sacrifice might make from it.

Posted by: johngalt at March 1, 2013 11:59 AM

Chicks, Guns, Vice Presidents...

I should probably save this for Friday -- or take the high road and forget it. But make of it what you will, and Happy Wednesday! The Vice-president's home protection advice is called into question:

Gun Rights Posted by John Kranz at 11:28 AM | What do you think? [3]
But johngalt thinks:

I wonder if Slow Joe even knows that a 20 gauge shotgun exists, much less the reason why: So that children, small statured women and men[?] like his interviewer can safely and comfortably fire it!

I also wonder if Mister Vice President has ever fired an AR-15, or realizes that its bullet is the same diameter as a .22 while a shotgun shell is the size of his thumb?

Posted by: johngalt at February 27, 2013 2:57 PM
But jk thinks:

ThreeSourcers are so wierd. They don't realize that firearms are properly ranked by how scary they look. Caliber? Recoil?

Posted by: jk at February 27, 2013 4:20 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Sarcasm noted.

Oooh, so SCARY.

If it's really about how they look then why don't they just make it illegal to paint rifles black?

Posted by: johngalt at February 27, 2013 4:37 PM

Reopening the Shop

Blog friend T. Greer is back in the blogging biz:

Two years ago I left the life that I had known to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It was the best decision I have ever made.

And now I am back.


Quote of the Day + a Rant

And when the Republicans opened the seventh seal of the sequester, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black and the stars fell unto the Earth; and our nation's ability to forecast severe weather, such as drought events, hurricanes and tornados, was seriously undermined. Lo, and the children were not vaccinated, and all the beasts starved in the zoos, and the planes were grounded. -- WSJ Ed Page
Sadly, the President is positioned to reify his dystopian dreams. When it passes -- and Larry Kudlow could not find a guest in a week to predict that it will not -- the President can make it painful and sit back and collect his "I told you so"s.

I enjoy ThreeSources, because the good folks 'round here discuss ideas. Facebook friends of all stripes always seem to be looking into hearts, motives and intentions. I really don't care if the President promotes bad policy because he harbors secret resentment of the West's Kenyan colonialism or --- as I suspect -- he's just a creature of the faculty lounge. As a great Stateswoman once said "What difference does it make?"

Well, now, it does. The President will soon have his hand on the knob that delivers the electric shock. He can crank it up, Simpsons style, for perceived political gain. Or, he could display statesmanship and compassion which would add to the economy and concomitantly enhance his legacy. I suspect he will split the difference -- maybe set it on four.

But we will learn something about the President's heart. Soon.

But johngalt thinks:

The president promotes "bad policy" because he truly believes it is "good policy." Whether he resents colonialism in Kenya or is a creature of the faculty lounge (which means he resents colonialism everywhere) the worldview will be the same: The "well off and well connected" have some pennance to do, and he is the instrument of salvation for history's slighted classes.

Rand said that on every issue there are two sides. One is right and the other is wrong but the middle, i.e. compromising between them or avoiding taking sides, is evil. One thing that can be said about this president is that he isn't afraid to take sides. Consistently so. I expect he will do everything in his power to make the pain a 10. But since government does far less than it claims to do, most districts won't even notice.

Posted by: johngalt at February 27, 2013 11:22 AM
But jk thinks:

This is a group that successfully blames every storm on global warming. The pro-government media will join expansive government pols in trumpeting every government failure as "lack of funds: caused by GOP sequester."

cf, Education.

Posted by: jk at February 27, 2013 12:41 PM

February 26, 2013

Sequestermania!

Yahoo/AP:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama brushed off a Republican plan Tuesday to give him flexibility to allocate $85 billion in looming spending cuts, wanting no part of a deal that would force him to choose between the bad and the terrible.

Put me in mind of this Reason 'toon:

wuggums.jpg

But johngalt thinks:

But it ISN'T a diet. It's a reduction in the amount of EXTRA desert from what Wuggums had already been promised.

"These cuts are wrong. They're not smart, they're not fair. They're a self-inflicted wound that doesn't have to happen," Obama said.

What could be more fair than equal cuts, across the board? The very inability of bureaucrats to make "smart" or specific cuts is what led to the sequester concept in the first place. My only beef is it's too small. No matter. Once it happens and "somehow, the earth keeps turnin'" voters will be less fearful of the next installment.

Posted by: johngalt at February 26, 2013 7:11 PM

EHRMIGAHD!!

They're going to shut down all the control towers!!! It's either that, or ask the wealthiest among us to pay a little bit more.

Bonus Jon Caldera interview!

But johngalt thinks:

No worries. President Whittle will be happy to take over operations wherever President Obama decides he can't "afford" to run things.

Posted by: johngalt at February 26, 2013 6:45 PM

February 25, 2013

3!

At last! Some Oscar news that is not terminally vapid! Ari Armstrong celebrates Anne Hathaway's big win -- and her understanding of "sacrifice;"

Reporter: When you look at how much work you had to do to prepare for this role [for The Dark Knight Rises], and then also a rigorous role in Les Mis as well--when you decided you wanted to be an actress years ago--this is the kind of stuff you signed up for?

Hathaway: Very, very much so. I didn’t sign up for a lot of it, but I did sign up for this. . . .

Second Reporter: As soon as you mentioned Les Mis, I noticed you stroking your hair [which was cut off for the role]. . . . That’s exactly what he's talking about, making those sacrifices for the roles that you're passionate about, and cutting your hair was one of them. Can you talk about those sacrifices that you have to make?

Hathaway: They don't feel like sacrifices when you’re making them. I mean, I love what I do for a living, and getting to transform is one of the best parts of it. So I never think about it like that.

Lovely.

Art Posted by John Kranz at 3:03 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

"Can you talk about sacrificing six dollars and seventy five cents for that combo meal you ate for lunch?"

George Orwell, line 3 please.

Posted by: johngalt at February 26, 2013 6:18 PM

Quote of the Day

Here it is: Food companies work very, very hard to find out what will give you, the consumer, the most pleasure for your money -- and then the diabolical fiends actually give it to you!

Seriously, you are supposed to be absolutely horrified by this. You can tell by the ominous language the author, Michael Moss, employs to describe how "food engineers alter a litany of variables with the sole intent of" -- brace yourself -- "finding the most perfect version" of a product. The most perfect version, of course, is the one that will "be most attractive to consumers." (The horror.) The piece even quotes one food-company executive who describes the strategy: "Discover what consumers want to buy and give it to them with both barrels." -- A Barton Hinkle, exposing the NYTimes Magazine exposé of Big Food.



Salazar vs. Akin

One of the many advantages of my participation in Liberty on the Rocks -- Flatirons [sorry, I'm snowed in tonight!] was to meet former Colorado House Rep. Shawn Mitchell. He matches intelligence, insight, and humor. My conservative buddies who favor term limits need to explain why we are better without this man in the House.

But I digress, twice. Mitchell has a superb guest editorial in Complete Colorado. I've ridiculed the Famous Facebook Friends. It seems 100 jokes about Richard Murdock or Cloddd Akin were too few, but one mention of Rep. Joe Salazar is too many. They can find a transgression from the most remote Republican: "The Deputy Assistant Dog Catcher of Dalhart Texas said..." Yet, there is little interest in a current legislator in their home (most of them) state.

Rep. Mitchell details how this includes Colorado media and how it is actually worse than the lameness of Akin or Murdock:

So there. Akin misstated a biological consequence of rape, and unforgivably disrespected a right the Supreme Court discovered in 1973 by a 5-4 vote. It had been a moot, contrived question in any event, since Akin's particular view is in the distinct minority in the Senate and was a nonstarter as long as the court upholds Roe v. Wade.

In contrast, Salazar mocked the idea of self defense embodied in actual constitutional text, and called women potential hysterical killers. He and Colorado Democrats are pushing hard to codify this view.

By many measures, Salazar's words are more offensive and consequential than Akin's. The Post's decree otherwise was both arrogant and unnecessary. If Salazar's words merit criticism, as the Post conceded, then criticize!


February 23, 2013

Is this fer real?

I'm crafting, as a background task, a post on libertarians and conspiracy theories. Being willing to "buck the trend" and disagree with Hollywood, 60 Minutes, and the NYTimes opens one up to questioning, perhaps, global warming or Keynesian economics.

Or fluoride in the water. Immunizations. Whether the shootings at Sandy Hook happened. President Bush's inside job of 9/11. Where President Obama was born. The moon landing. Genetically Modified crops. FEMA's coffins. Realistic targets for government ranges.

I am losing some libertarian friends to the items in my second paragraph. I don't want to insult somebody who is concerned about some of those -- but if you are invested in all of them, you may need to stock up on tinfoil headwear for the spring fashion season.

I have some severely heterodox beliefs and a contrarian nature. But I have NEVER SEEN THIS! Is this true?

Oil chemistry and engine technology have evolved tremendously in recent years, but you'd never know it from the quick-change behavior of American car owners. Driven by an outdated 3,000-mile oil change commandment, they are unnecessarily spending millions of dollars and spilling an ocean of contaminated waste oil.

Although the average car's oil change interval is around 7,800 miles -- and as high as 20,000 miles in some cars -- this wasteful cycle continues largely because the automotive service industry, while fully aware of the technological advances, continues to preach the 3,000-mile gospel as a way to keep the service bays busy. As a result, even the most cautious owners are dumping their engine oil twice as often as their service manuals recommend.

Toyota suggests 5K as people were pushing 7500.

Philosophy Posted by John Kranz at 10:42 AM | What do you think? [0]

When I Vote for a Democrat...

I voted for Democrat John Hickenlooper in the last Colorado Gubernatorial race, and he has only been slightly more disappointing than most of the Republicans for whom I pulled the lever (darkened the oval).

A trained geologist, he came out for fracking. A trained politician, he toned it down at his party's urging. A professional brewer, he cut taxes on craft beers. A professional politician, he did not extend tax cuts to other industries...

Insty brings word that he may rescue us from our new Democrat Legislature on gun rights:

Now, as Colorado jobs are on the line and Democratic lawmakers continue to humiliate themselves (and their state) at a national level, it's unsure if any new gun control laws will pass in CO. Which is fine by us.

Professor Reynolds adds "If I were in Colorado, I'd be trying to encourage him to come out in favor of civil rights, not gun control."


February 22, 2013

Quixotic Much?

C'mon, send some money to Paul McKinley. I don't know if he has a shot at Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s (D -- SingSing) seat, but I would love to see this guy show up to a Congressional Black Caucus meeting:

C'mon...

But johngalt thinks:

"Like"

Posted by: johngalt at February 22, 2013 10:01 PM

Is it Just Me?

It seems this might be a big deal were it done to Democrats. But I suppose "boys will be boys."

RALEIGH A group that sent out a memo with tips on how to attack Gov. Pat McCrory and other Republican leaders exercised "bad judgment" that could jeopardize its funding, the director of a foundation that finances the group said Friday.
[...]
Describing the control Republicans hold on North Carolina state government, it gave progressives a list of recommendations. Among them:

-- Crippling their leaders (McCrory, Tillis, Berger etc.).

-- Eviscerate the leadership and weaken their ability to govern.

-- Pressure McCrory at every public event.

-- Slam him when he contradicts his promises.

-- Private investigators and investigative reporting, especially in the executive branch...

Hat-tip: Insty

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

Friday Fun

DAVE'S ART LOCKER suggests british logos for all 32 NFL teams.

Hat-tip: Taranto

Sports Posted by John Kranz at 5:13 PM | What do you think? [0]

February 21, 2013

No Peak Oil, but who will refine it?

Vaclav Smil in the American wonders "Is it too much to hope that even some catastrophists and peak-oil cultists will find it impossible to ignore the latest numbers?"

Yes. But the numbers do look good:

The reversal has been impressive: from 2008 to 2011, extraction rose by nearly 50 Mt to just over 352 Mt, a level last seen in the year 2000; the increase over those three years was more than the total 2011 output of such oil powers as Indonesia or Azerbaijan. North Dakota (Bakken shale) has been the principal locus of this production renaissance. At the beginning of the year 2000 there were fewer than 200 oil wells producing from the Bakken deposits, averaging about 10 barrels a day per well; by October 2012, there were nearly 4,800 wells with average daily flow of about 140 barrels of oil per well. North Dakota's oil output was 37 percent ahead of Alaska’s North Slope extraction and behind only Texas and the offshore production in the Gulf of Mexico.

A forecast by the U.S. Department of Energy sees a possible production increase of as much as 140 Mt/year by 2025, and the most recent review by the International Energy Agency (IEA) even sees the United States as the world's largest crude oil producer as early as 2017. That may be too much to expect but, in any case, U.S. oil output disproves any preordained and immutable validity of Hubbert's curves (which attempt to infallibly predict U.S. and world oil output for decades to come! No wonder that Leonardo Maugeri, the former senior executive vice president of strategies and development for Italy's largest oil and gas company, ENI, speaks about a genuine oil revolution).

So that's why gas is so cheap!

Kudlow and his panel have the answer. A million bbls. of refined capacity has been taken off the market over the last year.

Thirty years since we built a refinery, but we shut them down regularly (~2:00). What are the odds of building one -- can you imagine that's happening?

Oil and Energy Posted by John Kranz at 12:48 PM | What do you think? [3]
But johngalt thinks:

I'm going to come out in favor of government funded research into car and truck engines that can run on a new "alternative" fuel: crude oil.

Posted by: johngalt at February 21, 2013 4:20 PM
But jk thinks:

Statist! What's the matter with Brother JohnGalt's Home Cracking Tower? $299.95! Order before midninght and we'll include a barrel of WTI.

Posted by: jk at February 21, 2013 4:30 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Just seein' if you are paying attention. :)

Posted by: johngalt at February 22, 2013 10:09 PM

3!

The new ThreeSources Entertainment Channel: 3!

With surprisingly little fanfare, considering all the Twitter, Facebook, and email lists for which up I am signed, Atlas Shrugged Part 2 was released Tuesday on DVD, Blu-Ray, and Amazon Instant.

The lovely bride and I enjoyed it last night. It's very good to see it again, yet I still think I lean toward preferring Part 1.


Boeuf Rouge

A Goodyear tire plant in France is scheduled to close, so the French government is attempting find a sucker, er, suitor to take it over along with the workers and union contracts. They approached Titan International, a US maker of farm tires. Titan is lead by a rather blunt CEO, Maurice "Morry" Taylor, whose nickname is "The Griz." The Griz sent a letter to the French industry minister indicating that it would be stupid to take over a plant where the workers only work three hours a day.

"The French workforce gets paid high wages but works only three hours. They get one hour for breaks and lunch, talk for three and work for three," Taylor wrote on February 8 in the letter in English addressed to the minister, Arnaud Montebourg.

"I told this to the French union workers to their faces. They told me that's the French way!" Taylor added in the letter, which was posted by business daily Les Echos on its website on Wednesday and which the ministry confirmed was genuine.

"How stupid do you think we are?" he asked at one point.

"Titan is going to buy a Chinese tire company or an Indian one, pay less than one Euro per hour wage and ship all the tires France needs," he said. "You can keep the so-called workers."


Red meat indeed for Three Sourcers; the article will elicit multiple huzzahs. Would it be possible to get a guy like this for president? Probably not. He ran for the Republican nomination in 1996 and even The Refugee does not remember him. However, we need more business leaders willing to stand up and compete rather than seeking rent from the government.

Nanny State Posted by Boulder Refugee at 10:54 AM | What do you think? [3]
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I can't believe I'm the one to be the voice of caution on this, but here goes...

Repeat after me: "Chris Christie." He became, briefly, the darling of conservatives when he did to the Jersey public unions what Taylor did to the French ones. And kudos to them both for that - kudos loudly and often. But Christie is a gun-grabber, and on fuller analysis, far from being a doctrinaire conservative or small-l libertarian. His genuflection before the SCOAMF in the last days of the Presidential election showed, shall we say, a fuller and broader display of his overall political leanings.

Colin Powell? Remember him? Remember back when half the Republicans you knew were seriously considering buoying him up to the top of the contenders? He was enthusiastically supported without any further vetting, so when it - much later - came to light that he was a big tax-and-spend, pro-redistribution RINO, we were all "never mind his stances on the issues! He's electable!"

What Taylor did is one facet of what we should be demanding of a President. Yes, I want PATCO a thousand times over. This is an interesting, but single, incident. The GOP needs to shake off the fanboy, cult-of-personality enthusiasm that gave us, well, Romney.

Mr. Taylor, I am intrigued, and your smackdown of the French has earned you my ear. I'm willing to listen. Tell me your story and your stances. You've earned an interview; now tell me more.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 21, 2013 11:54 AM
But jk thinks:

Brother Keith, the voice of reason and caution on ThreeSources...

I'll admit to having been on the Powell bandwagon. I dug his book, applaud his service. I'd love to ask him someday -- in a most respectful tone -- what does being a Republican mean to him. He is famous for heterodoxy, but from what? During his boomlet, libertarianism was not dominant in the GOP. He may have actually been a good Eisenhower-Republican President.

Gov. Christie disappoints, but has a fiduciary duty to Garden Staters to collect all the Federal Jack he can. Sad system, and I'd respect his rising above it, but he has got a job. On guns, I think we ignore geography at our peril. Kudlow has these pointy-headed East coasters on every night that are GOP from their Brooks Brothers cufflinks to their heart. And they have no genuine interest in gun rights. The WSJ Editorial Board has to work at it.

I'm pretty comfortable on the RandPaul2016 train right now.

Posted by: jk at February 21, 2013 12:24 PM
But jk thinks:

But we're straying off topic. The purpose of this post was to ridicule The French: Lazy Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys! Mon dieu!

Posted by: jk at February 21, 2013 12:26 PM

February 20, 2013

Don't Demand the Unearned -- UK Edition

Heather Frost, whom the Daily Mail suggests "treats her womb like a clown car," doesn't like the two homes she has been given for her 11 children -- and the jury is still out whether she'll like the 400,000 quid custom job they're building her.

Far from simply being grateful for her good fortune, the jobless mother of 11 says that if she doesn't like the house she'll just tell the council to build her another one.

She is due to move into the property -- valued at £400,000 -- in July after 'struggling' to survive in two adjacent houses in Churchdown, Gloucestershire, which have been joined together by the council.

Her new home will slash water and energy bills with its modern design using natural, locally-sourced materials. Extra large windows will fill it with natural light.

But Miss Frost, 37, who is also a grandmother, said the move is still subject to her approving the two-storey accommodation with its 355sq ft kitchen and dining area.

Neighbours say Frost currently lives with 14 people: all her eleven children, two grandchildren and her partner Jake, who they claim is also unemployed.

Hat-tip: Insty


February 19, 2013

Certifiable

The Refugee is pleased to report that he successfully passed the test to become an NRA Certified Basic Pistol instructor this past weekend. A basic pistol class is a pre-requisite to a concealed carry class in Colorado. The eight hour class (six in the classroom and two on the range) is suitable for both newbies as well as more experienced shooters wishing to pursue concealed carry. The Refugee will volunteer to teach the class to any Colorado-based Three Sourcer for the cost of materials ($15) and range fee ($5). It is available to anyone 13 or older.

Gun Rights Posted by Boulder Refugee at 8:16 PM | What do you think? [7]
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

I shoot at the Golden Gun Club by Watkins.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 20, 2013 12:21 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Awesome! Where do you plan to conduct the classroom portion?

Posted by: johngalt at February 20, 2013 11:55 AM
But jk thinks:

& any interest in a clean & repair party first? Or maybe I should see a pro -- none of mine has been fired for seven years and my dear little Ruger 9mm lacks the recoil spring collar retainer. It looks pretty straightforward if I ordered parts, but is that nuts?

I'm a software guy, and thsi is clearly a hardware problem.

Posted by: jk at February 20, 2013 12:19 PM
But dagny thinks:

I'm in!!! jg has been trying to get me to class for years but I never seem to have the time. Also, unless their are other requirements, the range here at Atlantis is always open.

Posted by: dagny at February 20, 2013 3:39 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

I'll conduct that class wherever it's convenient. The shooting qualification portion is basically .22 pistols at 5 yards (we can shoot larger calibers at anyone's option). As I recall, Atlantis has a suitable meeting room in the arena building that would be just fine. If there's a place to shoot the qualification, then we could easily get done in one day.

JK, I'd be happy to look at your 9mm, though I'm no gunsmith. There is, however, a gunsmith in old town Erie.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 20, 2013 6:45 PM
But jk thinks:

Say when good people! I have access to the lovely bride's .22 pistol or my Baretta .380 even if I don't get my 9mm repaired.

Posted by: jk at February 22, 2013 12:36 PM

Presidents Day (Belated)

A day late but still worth posting, I have a personal mistrust of "Presidents" Day. The Wiki entry says it is a combination of Washington and Lincoln's birthdays, and was pegged to a Monday by the Uniform Monday Holiday Act. I see it as a diminishment of America's greatest president, her first. While George Washington's Birthday was a federal holiday dating to 1879, Lincoln's birthday was never a federal holiday. The diluted, homogenized and de-personalized "Presidents" Day holiday was born in the 1980's, a result of an initiative begun in 1951 Compton, California "not to honor any particular President, but to honor the office of the Presidency." Why not then call it Oval Office Day?

But now back to Lincoln. Here is a character of two sides if ever there was one. One is almost shunned for speaking poorly of him, however. My first negative exposure came, as an adult, reading about his history with the so-called "Robber Barrons" a brief glimpse of which is found here. Coincidentally, our current president is fond of quoting, citing and championing the ideas of the Sixteenth. Yesterday I found a well done Presidents site, which includes a brief quote from each of America's presidents.

Lincoln: "Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?"

Lincoln likely referred to domestic rather than foreign enemies, but this does dovetail with the 44th president's stated and practiced foreign policy.

Obama: "It's easier to start wars than to end them. It is easier to blame others than to look inward. [!] It is easier to see what is different about someone than to find the things we share. But we should choose the right path, not just the easy path."

A bit rambling and disjointed - poorly veiled criticism of his predecessor. Not quite as inspirational as Washington's "Let us raise a standard to which the wise and honest can repair; the rest is in the hands of God."

Long live, the office of the President of the United States.

History Posted by JohnGalt at 3:21 PM | What do you think? [1]
But jk thinks:

I am surprised to read Lincoln's was never a Federal holiday. I remember getting both the 12th and 22nd off school (and walking ten miles in the snow...)

I meant to share something yesterday so everyone could share my horror, but now I cannot find it. Somebody put up a quote of President Wilson to celebrate President's Day! Thomas Woodrow Wilson! Guitar God John Pizzarelli even put on Radio Deluxe's Facebook page that it is to honor Presidents Washington and Lincoln, not all presidents.

In spite of my ancestors' grey uniforms and my contrarian libertarianism, I am not a Lincoln-hater by any stretch. Preservation of the Union was a noble goal. His courage and tenacity are worthy of admiration. The eloquence of the Lincoln-Douglas debates and the Gettysburg Address...

I'm not pleased that the States were centralized but see that as the price of abolition. I am sympathetic to Lord Acton and Thomas Woods's sorrow that the original compact was broken by the Fourteenth Amendment -- but if that be the cost of Thirteenth and Fifteenth, I will pay.

That said, it is humorous that he is particularly immune to criticism. He is Saint Abraham or "The Tyrant," ne'er between.

One of my favorite books of all time is James F. Simon's Lincoln and Chief Justice Taney: Slavery, Secession, and the President's War Powers, a beautiful look at the Constitutional struggles of the time.

It's the Devil versus the Saint and I defy the ThreeSourcer to choose our beloved 16th. History's greatest monster, Chief Justice Taney, is on the right side of every issue and deserves quite a bit of credit for balancing Lincoln's tendency to overreach.

Posted by: jk at February 19, 2013 4:33 PM

Quote of the Day

Of course they do: They sell ammo for deer rifles, and deer rifles can pierce police body armor. I know this because I have personally shot through police body armor with a deer rifle -- my father was a police officer for many years, and we used to test his old vests when he got new ones. Police vests protect against basic handgun rounds, up to .40-caliber or so. Anything bigger will go through, whether it's been called "armor-piercing" in the New York Times or not. -- Robert VerBruggen, schooling David Frum on guns
But johngalt thinks:

I once, naively, shot at three eighths inch thick steel targets with a deer rifle from about a hundred yards. When I heard no characteristic "clang" I thought I missed. Upon inspection, the round passed through the steel cleanly, without so much as a burr on the exit side of the target. Kevlar doesn't stand a chance.

Posted by: johngalt at February 19, 2013 3:59 PM
But jk thinks:

That explains why you never see deer wearing them.

Posted by: jk at February 19, 2013 4:42 PM
But johngalt thinks:

EX-actly right. Until this article I thought EVERYBODY knew that!

Posted by: johngalt at February 19, 2013 5:04 PM

Gangsterville

I will put this under War on Drugs, but I don't mean to poke a stick into the eye of my blog brothers. This is a "world has gone to hell what are you possibly going to do?" story of the first order. Kevin Williamson of National Review tours Chicago with a Pakistani guide, one Mister Butt.

"They do this to their own neighborhood," Mr. Butt says, exasperated. "They make it a place no decent person would want to be. Why do they do that? It’s very bad, very scary at night." This from a guy who vacations in Lahore.

Like many white boys before me I suppose, I went on a tear of books about life in Chicago's Housing Projects. Alex Kotlowitz's There Are No Children Here, Daniel Coyle's Hardball: a season in the projects and Richard Price's fictional Clockers.

Williamson describes a post-projects Chicago in which the big drug lords have lost their territory in Cabrini-Green and Henry Horner to be replaced by absolute anarchy of 15 year-olds controlling a block and requiring a murder for initiation.

Mr. Butt locks the doors, and we cruise through Englewood and environs. Martin Luther King Drive, like so many streets named for the Reverend King, is a hideous dog show of squalor and dysfunction, as though Daniel Patrick Moynihan's depressing reportage in 1965's The Negro Family had been used as a how-to manual.

I don't think any ThreeSourcer would institute any of the policies used to run Chicago, and it is easy to see it as a blue model train wreck of deracinated multi-generational welfare, drug laws, gun restrictions, gub'mint education, and "community organizing."

Even if you got them to admit the problem and stop applying increased dosage of that which brought them here, what do you do? I cannot long for the sweet old days when more grownup drug lords ruled the town, holding the violence down like Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Daley? The Mob? Capone?

Mister answer for everything leaves the reader Chicago as an exercise. I'd love to yank the gangs' funding by no longer protecting their drug profits from legal competition, but much more is required.

Malala Yousafzai was a 15-year-old schoolgirl who got shot for a reason -- a terrible, awful, evil reason, but a reason. (Say what you like about Islamic radicalism, at least it's an ethos.) All of Chicago is aghast at the story of 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, who was shot -- and, unlike Malala Yousafzai, killed -- apparently for no reason at all, at 2:20 in the afternoon in a public park. Miss Pendleton was a student at King College Prep, and a majorette in the school's band, which had the honor of performing at President Obama's first inauguration. Miss Pendleton had just recently returned from a trip to the president’s second inauguration when she took shelter from the rain under a canopy at Harsh Park.

War on Drugs Posted by John Kranz at 9:41 AM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Chicago, like Kabul, will be as safe as the local police department decides it will be. For free people the only option is to accept it or emmigrate. Escape From Chicago! (I think the old franchise has at least one more sequel in 'er.)

Posted by: johngalt at February 19, 2013 12:49 PM

February 18, 2013

Colorado House Passes Four Gun Bills

Did I mention that Democrats took over the Colorado State House and Senate?

Denver Post: "The four bills are: limiting magazines to 15 rounds, requiring universal background checks, requiring purchasers to pay for those checks, and banning concealed weapons on college campuses."

Concealed weapons on college campuses would be banned under a bill passed Monday in the Colorado House, legislation part of a Democratic gun control package that cleared the House the same day.

House Bill 1226, which bans concealed weapons on public college campuses, passed the House on a 34-31 vote, with three Democrats voting no.

Democrats argued guns and college students don't mix and that campuses are some of the safest places in America.

"There are a lot of students who simply are not ready to be in the presence of firearms," said Rep. Claire Levy, D-Boulder, the sponsor of the bill. "It;s a dangerous mix."


"Democrats argued guns and college students don't mix and that campuses are some of the safest places in America." Non-sequitor much?

But johngalt thinks:

Little known fact: Both Chicago, Illinois and Washington D.C. were once sprawling college campii populated exclusively by students. Fortunately, wise politicians made private gun ownership illegal before the carnage got truly out of hand.

Posted by: johngalt at February 18, 2013 6:22 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Say, I just saw your boy Joe Salazar (D-Hoplophobia) has solved the whole problem. He's figured out that women can't be trusted with firearms, because if they're afraid of being raped or assaulted, they'll probably shoot wildly anyway. And a rapist may change his mind and not commit rape after all, and besides, college campuses are already safe zones, so there's nothing to fear.

http://is.gd/VVROix

Therefore, it's okay to disenfranchise half of America of their Second Amendment rights on the basis of gender. Or something like that.

Nice to see California doesn't have a monopoly on pinheads.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 19, 2013 11:44 AM
But johngalt thinks:

The press called Richard Mourdock a crackpot for his rape comments, and rightly so. Where are they now?

Posted by: johngalt at February 19, 2013 12:46 PM
But jk thinks:

Richard Murdock and Todd Akin's comments sure aroused a lot of interest from my Facebook friends. Salazar's not so much. Crickets.

Posted by: jk at February 19, 2013 1:11 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Heh.

From: stlouis.cbslocal.com/2013/02/19/mo-house-bill-makes-proposing-gun-control-illegal/

Posted by: johngalt at February 19, 2013 5:16 PM

Very Interesting Paper

Insty links to an interesting paper: The Constitution as if Consent Mattered by Tom W. Bell.

At 22 pages, it is a hair longer than yesterday's Review Corner, even without the double spacing I am used to, but it has all kinds of footnotes and citations. Work, schmerk!

Bell brings up libertarians' penchant for the Nolan Chart, replacing the left-right scalar function with the two dimensions of economic liberty and social liberty. Bell suggests that the residents of the top point in Nolanland also reject the originalist - living constitution scalar variable for a two dimensional plane of responsiveness and textual fidelity.

Why are we discarding our allegiance to the founders, jk? Did you get your hands on Angel Raich's medicine?

Bell introduces respect for modernization on the basis of "consent of the governed." We ask our young friends to allow coercive fealty to a document written and ratified over two centuries ago. That does not bother ThreeSourcers who generally approve of its timeless wisdom as an originalist interprets, but Bell suggests that key liberties could still enjoy protection under a constitutional regime that allows more modern interpretations of what constitutes a militia, and the difference between privileges and immunities with rights and liberty.

Now, I tend to consider originalism as a way-out-there newfangled version of textualism, but Bell provides some great points to ponder. And football season is still six months away.

SCOTUS Posted by John Kranz at 2:50 PM | What do you think? [0]

February 17, 2013

Editor's Choice Award

I'm perhaps too generous with stars in Review Corner. I'm pretty respectful of an Author's work, and -- contra Tyler Cowen -- by the time I invest the time and money in a book, I'm fairly certain I'll be interested. The problem is that I am left without tools to highlight that exceptional, once-a-year, mind-blowing book. My inner math guy will not allow six on a scale of five.

But this is a blog, and you can just make **** up as it pleases. Ergo and further pursuant to, I institute the "Editor's Choice Award" and if any of my blog brothers wish to award one, we'll move the apostrophe.

I retroactively award it to David Deutsch's "The Beginning of Infinity." We discussed it last year, but I am in a thread on the JC-JK Book Club on it. And it is a reminder of the kind of book that gets something beyond five crummy little ThreeSources Review Corner stars.

The second recipient is the topic of today's Review Corner: Nassim Nicholas Taleb's: Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder. Both are mind blowing books by brilliant, off-the-charts-long-tail-genius authors. Curiously, Taleb contradicts many things I believe; Deutsch much fewer. I mention that only because my ThreeSources reviews are more political and philosophical than literary. To most I would not bring it up

To steep in the intelligence of either is a great gift. Taleb worked as a "quant:" the highest, brainiac job on Wall Street. He worked just long enough to earn what he calls his "f*** you money," enabling him to pursue life and knowledge on his own terms. He is a polyglot and a polymath. His books will quote philosophy, physics, business, medicine, ancient history, and the derivation of Aramaic words -- all before breakfast. I enjoyed Black Swan, but this is his Magnum Opus. It is divided into seven books, and he says "Black Swan" should rightfully be the eighth book in "Antifragile."

If you don't wish to commit $15.99 and some serious brain cycles to the book, I'd search the Internet for interviews and reviews where he author defines Antifragility. My description will be too short and incomplete:

Fragility, like the author's favorite tea cup, is the exposure to great harm from volatility. When asked for the antonym of fragile, most will choose "robust." The stone, unlike the tea cup, can be dropped on the floor or shaken in shipment. Taleb claims that we have no term for the actual antonym of fragile, so he provides the neologism "Antifragile." Antifragile things don't just weather volatility, they are strengthened by it. The first example is human bones. Six months of weightlessness in space or an extended hospital stay greatly reduces bone strength which requires stressors. Indeed the entire body profits from random stressors of exercise, fasting, &c.

Much of our modern, structured, world has been harming us with top-down policies and contraptions (dubbed "Soviet-Harvard delusions" in the book) which do precisely this: an insult to the antifragility of systems. This is the tragedy of modernity: as with neurotically overprotective parents, those trying to help are often hurting us the most.
[...]
The antifragile gains from prediction errors, in the long run. If you follow this idea to its conclusion, then many things that gain from randomness should be dominating the world today-- and things that are hurt by it should be gone. Well, this turns out to be the case. We have the illusion that the world functions thanks to programmed design, university research, and bureaucratic funding, but there is compelling-- very compelling-- evidence to show that this is an illusion, the illusion I call lecturing birds how to fly.

There is the medical fragilista who overintervenes in denying the body's natural ability to heal and gives you medications with potentially very severe side effects; the policy fragilista (the interventionist social planner) who mistakes the economy for a washing machine that continuously needs fixing (by him) and blows it up; the psychiatric fragilista who medicates children to "improve" their intellectual and emotional life; the soccer-mom fragilista; the financial fragilista who makes people use "risk" models that destroy the banking system (then uses them again); the military fragilista who disturbs complex systems; the predictor fragilista who encourages you to take more risks; and many more.

Taleb, Nassim Nicholas (2012-11-27). Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder (Kindle Locations 462-467). Random House, Inc.. Kindle Edition.


Did I mention that Taleb is rudely dismissive of those he considers beneath him? This includes most people, but happily for the ThreeSourcer, academics and mainstream journalists top the list. Thomas Friedman and Paul Krugman get some serious whacks. Alan Greenspan -- it's all good fun until he turns his sights on Hayek and Ronald Reagan (neither get it as bad as the others, but I am warning the ThreeSourcer...)

Academics, oh my:

A nail displaces another nail, with astonishing variety. But academics (particularly in social science) seem to distrust each other; they live in petty obsessions, envy, and icy-cold hatreds, with small snubs developing into grudges, fossilized over time in the loneliness of the transaction with a computer screen and the immutability of their environment. Not to mention a level of envy I have almost never seen in business.... My experience is that money and transactions purify relations; ideas and abstract matters like "recognition" and "credit" warp them, creating an atmosphere of perpetual rivalry. I grew to find people greedy for credentials nauseating, repulsive, and untrustworthy.

He's not very keen on Economists and big company CEOs.
Likewise, Gerd Gigerenzer reports a more serious violation on the part of Harry Markowitz, who started a method called "portfolio selection" and received the same iatrogenic Swedish Riskbank prize (called "Nobel" in economics) for it, like other fragilistas such as Fragilista Merton and Fragilista Stiglitz. I spent part of my adult life calling it charlatanism, as it has no validity outside of academic endorsements and causes blowups (as explained in the Appendix). Well, Doctor Professor Fragilista Markowitz does not use his method for his own portfolio; he has recourse to more sophisticated (and simpler to implement) cabdrivers' methodologies, closer to the one Mandelbrot and I have proposed.

If one judges a man by his enemies, Nassim Nicholas Taleb would be a ThreeSources hero and we would hold feasts in his honor with fireworks and martinis. Philosophically, it is hard to pin Taleb down. Some of his points should draw some amens from the ThreeSources choir:
The great benefit of the Enlightenment has been to bring the individual to the fore, with his rights, his freedom, his independence, his "pursuit of happiness" (whatever that "happiness" means), and, most of all, his privacy. In spite of its denial of antifragility, the Enlightenment and the political systems that emerged from it freed us (somewhat) from the domination of society, the tribe, and the family that had prevailed throughout history.
[...]
What Erasmus called ingratitudo vulgi, the ingratitude of the masses, is increasing in the age of globalization and the Internet. My dream-- the solution-- is that we would have a National Entrepreneur Day, with the following message:
Most of you will fail, disrespected, impoverished, but we are grateful for the risks you are taking and the sacrifices you are making for the sake of the economic growth of the planet and pulling others out of poverty. You are at the source of our antifragility. Our nation thanks you.

[...]
This great variety of people and their wallets are there, in Switzerland, for its shelter, safety, and stability. But all these refugees don't notice the obvious: the most stable country in the world does not have a government. And it is not stable in spite of not having a government; it is stable because it does not have one.

He's a great reader of philosophy. Of all the folks I read, I think only Popper (and Taleb is a Popper fan) has a close-to-equivalent grasp of straight-up philosophy. Taleb probably has an advantage in depth of Eastern, Islamic scholars. Taleb is an Eastern Orthodox Christian from Lebanon (Levant to him) he has a foot in the east and one in the west as it were, and he assembles his knowledge and philosophy from both.

He quotes approbationally from philosophers I have dressed in silver and black and put on the Raiders' sidelines: Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, and of course Plato. I can't help but feel his nuance is a higher order. He doesn't go to Hagel or Kant, the ThreeSourcer is safe from that. But he is no Randian.

Perhaps the idea behind capitalism is an inverse-iatrogenic effect, the unintended-but-not-so-unintended consequences: the system facilitates the conversion of selfish aims (or, to be correct, not necessarily benevolent ones) at the individual level into beneficial results for the collective.

And while he is not anti-modernity, he is skeptical -- here we separate him from Deutsch. He would gladly trade the "addition" via positiva of all Pharmaceuticals ever invented for the "subtraction" via negativa of smoking. He drinks coffee (mmm, coffee), chamomile tea and wine -- nothing that has not been around 1000 years. He doesn't approve of eReaders, he listens to baroque classical music. All of these seem rather charming to his character but I have no plans to join him.

You can certainly criticize medicine and Big Pharma for producing solutions with worse side effects than the disease. No doubt we've all had a chuckle at the narrated fine print in the commercials. But I (and Deutsch) see it as trial and error (a most antifragile process) on the way to better medicine and medication. Patients should consider his points, but I'm not going to shutter Roche and Merck.

Quibbles. Picayune philosophical quibbles with the brilliant work of a brilliant author. Five Stars and the coveted ThreeSources "Editor's Choice Award" to this magnificent book.

Review Corner Posted by John Kranz at 11:09 AM | What do you think? [2]
But johngalt thinks:

If only your original elevator talk had explained that you saw classical liberalism's effect on "society" as an inverse-iatrogeneic effect. We would at least have been forced to delay pouncing on you long enough to look up what that means! ;)

The author's concept of fragility is intriguing. All of us have probably observed at one point or another that prosperity has made us soft. Here is a more rigorous explanation of that phenomenon.

Posted by: johngalt at February 18, 2013 4:01 PM
But jk thinks:

Heh, that was for you!

The fragility is less the softness of modernity, as the attempts to iron out natural volatility's setting up a catastrophic crash (Black Swan). Glue all of your expansion joints and the structure won't slip, but it will be more likely to shatter.

Posted by: jk at February 18, 2013 4:18 PM

February 16, 2013

Headline of the Day

George Orwell, calll your office:

Gun ban would protect more than 2,200 firearms

Protect? Ban? Whatever. Here is a screen grab in case they change it:

gunbanprotect.jpg

Gun Rights Posted by John Kranz at 10:17 AM | What do you think? [1]
But Terri thinks:

Oh brother!

Posted by: Terri at February 16, 2013 9:49 PM

Wait! I Know this one!

Professor Mankiw asks Why $9?

There is one question I would like to see some reporter ask Alan Krueger, the president's chief economist: How did they decide that $9 per hour is the right level? Why not $10 or $12 or $15 or $20? Presumably, the president's economic team must believe that the adverse employment effects become sufficiently large at some point that further increases are undesirable. But what calculations led them to decide that $9 strikes the right balance?

Wasn't nine dollars the cost for birth control? See, there's symmetry and reason behind the Administration's policies, you just have to look really hard.


February 15, 2013

Libertario Delenda Est

Jeeburz, jk, aren't there any Libertarian Wackos on Facebook?

Why, yes, there's Cato's David Boaz. A lot of the Big-L's are lighthearted and ga -- I mean humorous, and it is easy to overlook their flaws because they seem fun. My brother-in-law once suggested we go on a National Review cruise. He agreed with me that the Reason cruise was probably a better time...

Boaz is a bright guy and has done some great things for liberty and for Cato. I'd never pick a fight. But if he wants to, I'll take sides. He posts:

"Glee" tonight: A conservative's nightmare. A wedding reception where boys danced with boys, girls danced with girls, blacks danced with whites, and no one actually got married.

I'm sure the Billions of easily-offended, homophobic, racist, anti-miscegenist, anti-dance, Conservative Glee fans had a pretty rough Thursday.

Some commenters have taken him to task and it has descended into childish name calling -- except that it started out as childish name calling. I'm an unlikely person to champion conservatives qua conservatives. And, other than the episode Joss Whedon guest-directed, I don't watch a lot of Glee. I'll watch the big closing number sometimes if I tune in for the news early. The kids do a bang up job, but the plotlines and character arcs elude me.

How unenlightened of Boaz to imagine his opponents' lack of enlightenment. "Boy, I bet my lefty friends were cheesed off yesterday -- the S&P 500 hit a five year high!" I'd expect that from a less intellectual source than CATO. "Mister Mutual Forbearance" also wonders why a CATO VP is picking a fight with conservatives to begin with. Fine to disagree on policy, or decry what a conservative candidate says that you feel is anti-liberty. But why should CATO beat the bushes for a scuffle with potential funders and supporters?

But jk thinks:

Libertarians: determined to stay at 9% electoral support!

Posted by: jk at February 15, 2013 7:11 PM
But AndyN thinks:

I would have guessed that any conservatives who had been watching Glee stopped when the show blatantly ripped off a small time performer's intellectual property and then told him that he should be grateful for the exposure they gave him by using his composition without acknowledging who the composer was. Maybe I don't really get libertarianism because I would have thought libertarians would disapprove of that sort of behavior as well, although it fits the caricature of libertarianism that if somebody else is big enough to take what you have then they deserve to have it because you shouldn't want the government to step in and protect you.

Posted by: AndyN at February 16, 2013 2:29 PM
But jk thinks:

I confess this is new to me. A little searching reveals two property complaints: are you referring to "Baby's Got Back" or the fan-suggested episode or something else?

Posted by: jk at February 18, 2013 12:29 PM
But AndyN thinks:

I was referring to Baby Got Back, but mostly I was being a smart ass. I think Jonathan Coulton is amazing, and I think it was inexcusable for Glee to use what was undeniably his composition without giving him credit, but I doubt very seriously that watching the show either before or after that occurred says much of anything about anybody's ideological views.

Posted by: AndyN at February 18, 2013 9:01 PM

What's the Big Deal?

If there are leftover seats, they will be shared with White Kids:

Hat-tip: Taranto. A little Centennial State geography: Aurora is a suburb of Denver, was if not is the second largest city in Colorado, and I lived there for several years. It is a well-integrated inner-ring suburb.

Education Posted by John Kranz at 5:05 PM | What do you think? [0]

Where is Singapore's Obama When They Need Him?

The chart below comes from an article explaining why Filipino prize fighter Manny Pacquiao's chief adviser told Yahoo Sports that a match in Las Vegas is a "no go" because of the IRS top marginal rate of 39.6% on earnings in the USA.

The other options Pacquiao and his management team have considered are Macau and Singapore: both casino and gaming markets comparable to Las Vegas and ideal to host a grand boxing event.

US-singapore%20top%20marginal%20rates.jpg

Singapore's top rate is roughly half of America's, and they are reputed to have a balanced budget. Irrefutable proof that they "don't care about children or the underprivileged." Don't even get me started on Macau.


February 14, 2013

America's Development as a Nation

In a comment below, Brother jg links to a USPS page advertising the "Four Flags:"

The U.S. flag flies high with stars and stripes! Each stamp represents an important theme in America's development as a nation: Freedom, Liberty, Equality, and Justice.

I thought there should be at least as many flags in the series as there are delivery days in the week, so I took the liberty of updating the series:

6flags.gif

Philosophy Posted by John Kranz at 7:43 PM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

Ya dun it good, brother.

And when Saturday delivery is axed they'll can the Liberty stamp.

Posted by: johngalt at February 15, 2013 2:18 AM

Meanwhile, in Buffy News

Browncoat Valentines!

Hope everybody caught Gina Torres's guest appearance on Castle this week!

Television Posted by John Kranz at 6:50 PM | What do you think? [0]

Happy Valentine's Day

A breakup letter from an economist. It's the utility-maximizing thing to do.

I want you to know that this decision isn’t just for me--it's for you, too. I've done the calculations. There are plenty of eligible bachelors out there who are probably able to more vigorously, consistently, and knowledgeably have sexual intercourse with you. While the thought of you being with someone else causes me a substantial negative utility that makes me feel as though I am going to vomit, I know that in the aggregate everyone is better off, and therefore it is the right decision for us to make.

There's no need to try to persuade me otherwise, Susan. We just can't let our feelings get in the way of the math.


Hat-tip: Mankiw

On the web Posted by John Kranz at 3:27 PM | What do you think? [1]
But Keith Arnold thinks:

And once again, "the dismal science" proves how richly deserved that moniker is. And yet, written by an economist with a sense of humor!

If I may humbly offer in counterpoint, as JG and I have recently discussed music lyrics, a little Trace Adkins:

(This Ain't) No Thinkin' Thing

I been thinkin' 'bout our love situation
All this attraction in the present tense
I've reached the only logical conclusion
Love ain't supposed to make sense

This ain't no thinkin` thing,
Right brain, left brain
It goes a little deeper than that
It's a chemical, physical, emotional devotion
Passion that we can't hold back
There's nothin` that we need to analyze
There ain't no rhyme or reason why
'Cause this ain't, this ain't no thinkin` thing

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 14, 2013 6:20 PM

Brain Trust

Everybody talkin' 'bout Sen. Chuck Hagel's (Opportunist - NE) terrible confirmation hearing. Clearly it was a cleverly laid trap from Davids Plouffe and Axelrod to divert attention from Treasury nominee Jack Lew -- or, as the WSJ Ed Page calls him, "The Rookie:"

And when Orrin Hatch (R., Utah) ticked off the problems that afflicted the two Citi divisions that Mr. Lew oversaw as chief operating officer, the nominee seemed to know less about them than Mr. Hatch. "I don't recall specific conversations" about any of several Citi-run hedge funds that were imploding at the time, said Mr. Lew. "I was aware there were funds that were in trouble."

Citigroup funds with high leverage crashed and burned, requiring a taxpayer bailout while sparking fierce debates at Citi over whether customers had been adequately informed. But the COO who oversaw legal affairs for some of these units says he formed no opinion.
[...]
Ohio Democrat Sherrod Brown tried to draw out Mr. Lew on one of the Senator's favorite subjects: The fact that too-big-to-fail banks can borrow at lower rates than small banks because of the implied government backing. Mr. Lew rambled before saying that he was "not familiar with the specific issue."


These next four years are just going to be swell, are they not?


Proximus

After the election of President Obama to his first term I thought that his victory was mostly attributable to how much he appealed to America's naive youth. After his re-election I'm blaming it on the transfer payment dependency of the baby boom generation. But after reading the first few pages of Robert Draper's magazine length piece in the New York Times I'm more inclined to direct my ire, still at the baby boomers, but those of my party and not the electorate as a whole.

Draper spent time with a 28 year-old conservative pollster named Kristen Soltis Anderson. She focus grouped 20-something Obama voters with conservative tendencies. Draper summarizes:

Still, to hear her focus-group subjects tell it, the voice of today’s G.O.P. is repellent to young voters. Can that voice, belonging to the party’s most fevered members, still be accommodated even as young Republicans seek to bring their party into the modern era?

This conundrum has been a frequent postelection topic as youthful conservative dissidents huddle in taverns and homes and — among friends, in the manner of early-20th-century Bolsheviks — proceed to speak the unspeakable about the ruling elite.

This hit home with me. "Sounds like Liberty on the Rocks" I thought. From here Draper segues to one such group in Midtown Manhattan called Proximus, headed by John Goodwin who said, "This is a long-term play. This isn’t going to happen by 2014. But we want to be able to show voters that we have a diversity of opinion. Right now, Republicans have such a small number of vocal messengers. What we want to do is add more microphones and eventually drown out the others." John Goodwin's name is probably not as familiar as that of his fiancee, S.E. Cupp, who added, "If I were training a candidate who’s against gay marriage I’d say: 'Don’t change your beliefs, just say legislatively this is not a priority, and I’m not going to take away someone’s right. And if abortion or gay marriage is your No. 1 issue, I’m not your guy."

This sounds just fine to me, but to the long-time Republicans who are my senior - the "baby-boom GOP" - they're most likely to say of her candidate what one said to me last year: "Well they're wrong!" [2nd comment]

Note: Proximus is Latin for "next."

Politics Posted by JohnGalt at 2:53 PM | What do you think? [5]
But jk thinks:

Thanks for making me relive that post. Yes your comment is germane, but those were dark days.

I have called for realignment and a focus on liberty for some time. I would be much happier in the party you imagine.

And yet, I think all of the liberty minded need be cautious in evaluating the political benefit of realignment. We're not going to be cooler than them even with moderated positions on gay rights, abortion and the infield fly rule. And while I'd enjoy the consistency, I suspect the losses are likely offset. This blog has a good friend whose parents were "New-Dealers" through and through. They subscribed to The Nation and got Holiday Cards from Sen. Paul Wellstone (LeftOfftheMap - MN). Yet they pulled the lever for GOP candidates because of their Pro-Life positions.

The other folks have got Sandra Fluke! No matter how tall we stand on Griswold, asking women to pay $9 for pills is Puritanism!

Long-term, I think the GOP must ameliorate its social positions. But if they took jk-jg positions in 2014, they'd lose 25% of their voters, 40% of their volunteers and 75% of their funding.

Feel better?

Posted by: jk at February 14, 2013 3:48 PM
But jk thinks:

Jay Nordlinger quotes in interesting reader missive:

A few months ago I got a form letter from Planned Parenthood which began, in bold type: "The election results made it crystal clear: The American people don't want politicians to meddle in our personal health care decisions."

Funny -- the results seemed to me to say exactly the opposite.

Posted by: jk at February 14, 2013 5:31 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Funny but sad. The Affordable Care Act or 'Obamacare' continues to poll under 50% favorability. And yet, the electorate chose its namesake. Why? See above.

I will extrapolate JKs prescription that "the GOP must ameliorate its social positions" into a form that comports with my post: Older Republicans must ameliorate their social positions, at least as matters of governance and law. Those who wish to dissuade these (and any other) behaviors would be better served using Reddit and Twitter rather than the United States Code.

Posted by: johngalt at February 14, 2013 6:09 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Taking it a step or two further...

How collectivist must our government become before Older Republicans embrace electable (Proximal?) GOP candidates in primary elections?

Will those voters evolve (or die off) before America is fully transformed into an egalitarian state? It may not be as long as we might hope.

Posted by: johngalt at February 14, 2013 7:20 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Did I just say "electable?" Isn't that why we were supposed to nominate Romney?

Posted by: johngalt at February 15, 2013 3:19 PM

Headline of the Day

First President in US History to Have Voted to Filibuster a Supreme Court Nominee Now Hopes for Clean Process -- ABC News
Hat-tip: Jim Geraghty

From the Coffeehouse Vaults

My mother was born on Valentine's Day. And she always did a great job pretending to like my music. So this one's for her:

Rodgers & Hart meet the new mandolin.

[Originally posted Feb 8, 2011]


February 13, 2013

All Hail Taranto!

Nice:

taranto130213.gif

On the web Posted by John Kranz at 5:05 PM | What do you think? [0]

Some Music

I know I'm late to the party, as these good people have already broken up, but I remain charmed by their musical purity and distinctive sound. The Civil Wars:

The price to be on the cutting edge of music appreciation is to listen to a lot of bad stuff. I outsource that filtering to others.

Music Posted by John Kranz at 12:43 PM | What do you think? [0]

Quote of the Day

Mr. Obama's second inaugural was a clarion call to "collective action," as he put it, and Tuesday's speech showed what he thinks that should mean in practice. "The American people don't expect government to solve every problem," he said, while proceeding to offer a new government program to solve every problem. -- WSJ Ed Page

SOTU

I'm busy. To enjoy full productivity gains from the Internet, I am going to crib my SOTU review.

Kirsten Powers -- I know she's a FOX News Democrat, but she's a Democrat all the same -- did not really enjoy the speech more than I did. I would not change a word of her USA Today column: Same Old Same Old from Obama.

Contrary to the claims of both sides, Obama is not a liberal visionary with deep desires to institute a progressive agenda. If he is, he's a miserable failure. You need look no further than his own record (starting with foreign policy) and then Tuesday night's speech for evidence. Banalities and tropes are not a governing philosophy or a plan. The immigration piece was good, but hardly a profile in courage. After all, even the GOP wants immigration reform now. There is also the small fact that Obama promised to deal with immigration in his first term.

Rub a little dirt in it, Mr. President. It doesn't get much kinder:
That this underwhelming State of the Union -- substantively and stylistically -- will be treated as a serious effort reveals the bad shape our country is really in.

But johngalt thinks:

Chuck Hagel mailed it in on his SecDef nomination, why shouldn't his boss mail it in for his official duties as well?

We get the kind of POTUS that The New York Times decides we deserve at any given point in history, at least whenever the sitting office holder is a Democrat.

Posted by: johngalt at February 13, 2013 3:31 PM

February 12, 2013

SOTU QOTD

My friends, the president's State of the Union Address is our national pro bowl -- a simulation of the art of persuasion and politics featuring all the big stars, played at about half-speed, with no real consequence. -- Jim Geraghty
But jk thinks:

So STFU...........

Posted by: jk at February 12, 2013 12:46 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"... a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."

Dunsinane Castle, or D.C.? Would that the SCOAMF were "heard no more" but otherwise, I think the Bard pretty much gets the idea.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 12, 2013 4:26 PM
But jk thinks:

Like.

Posted by: jk at February 12, 2013 5:43 PM

February 11, 2013

Quote of the Day

True, but we have to say, that "second-rate people" quote offends us. We know some lovely second-rate people, and it's unfair [of VP Dick Cheney] to compare them to Chuck Hagel and John Kerry. -- James Taranto

ThreeSources Health Tips

Just making sure you guys are all properly caring for your shopping bags:

Is San Francisco's bag ban a killer? Conceivably, yes, but probably not.

Intuitively, the Wharton findings make sense. The city's anti-bag laws are designed to drive consumers to reusable bags. Consumer advice types warn people about the dangers of said bags becoming germ incubators. I got this from the TLC website:

"Designate specific bags for meats and fish. Wash these bags regularly -- preferably after each shopping trip -- to get rid of bacteria. If your bag is fabric, toss it in the washing machine with jeans, and if it's a plastic material, let it soak in a basin filled with soapy water and either the juice of half a lemon or about a quarter cup of vinegar."


If only there were some inexpensive material that could be used for sanitary, disposable shopping bags...oh, well, someday maybe...

Environment Posted by John Kranz at 11:07 AM | What do you think? [2]
But johngalt thinks:

Aren't disposable diapers illegal there too? Same merde, different day.

Posted by: johngalt at February 11, 2013 4:53 PM
But jk thinks:

Nah, just soak them in the sink with the juice of half a lemon.

Posted by: jk at February 11, 2013 5:36 PM

February 9, 2013

Coming Soon...

Free Gub'mint Health Care!

The report, which examined conditions at Stafford Hospital in Staffordshire over a 50-month period between 2005 and 2009, cites example after example of horrific treatment: patients left unbathed and lying in their own urine and excrement; patients left so thirsty that they drank water from vases; patients denied medication, pain relief and food by callous and overworked staff members; patients who contracted infections due to filthy conditions; and patients sent home to die after being given the wrong diagnoses.

The NYTimes, that right wing rag, is clearly printing these lies to try and discredit the president's agenda.

Health Care Posted by John Kranz at 12:04 PM | What do you think? [0]

Concious Capitalism Revisited

I was right!

There are companies that strive to be environmentally responsible. And then there is a different category of firms altogether--those on the radical extreme, which use investor dollars to wage open green activism. REI is among these. Ms. Jewell, who joined the REI board in 1996 and rose to CEO in 2005, has been central to campaigns that have squelched thousands of jobs in the name of environmental purity.

That's Kim Strassel describing Sally Jewell, President Obama's nominee for Interior Secretary: "a woman who 'knows the link between conservation and good jobs.'" Why do I link?

A) Because it's Friday, and b) Jewell and REI are lauded in John Mackey's "Conscious Conservatism," which received a paltry 2.5 stars in last Sunday's Review Corner.

REI went through this a few years ago. CEO Sally Jewell describes the process the company used: We spent time as a large leadership group, 150 people, asking, "Why does REI exist?" Then we asked ourselves five times, "Why is that important?" And two more questions: "What would happen if REI went away?" and then, "Why do I devote my creative energies to this organization?"

Mackey, John; Sisodia, Rajendra (2012-12-25). Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business (Kindle Locations 2003-2004). Harvard Business Review Press. Kindle Edition.


Mackey paints her as a great and visionary female leader, and highlights her compassionate treatment of suppliers. This is not explicitly at odds with Strassel's rather different portrayal as radical environmentalist, but I cannot ignore the dark shadow on Mackey's book celebrating capitalism.

Jewell participated in the opposition to the oyster farm brother jg highlighted. Strassel:

Mr. Lunny runs an 80-year-old California oyster business that had the bad luck decades ago of being enclosed in a federal park. On Monday, as Ms. Jewell polished her acceptance speech, a federal judge ordered the business evicted. Among the organizations working hardest to destroy the livelihood of Mr. Lunny and his 30 workers was the National Parks Conservation Association. Ms. Jewell is vice-chairman of its board.
[..]
REI's bigger influence, however, has come from funneling money to radical groups via the Conservation Alliance, a foundation it created with Patagonia, The North Face and Kelty in 1989. Ms. Jewell was lauded by the group in 2010 for committing REI to giving more than $100,000 a year to this outfit.

The Conservation Alliance maintains a list of the "successes" it has notched via the dollars it sends to militant environmental groups like Earthjustice. In the past few years alone that list has included "77 oil and gas leases halted" in Utah, 55,000 acres put off limits to oil and gas jobs in Colorado, the destructions of functioning dams, and the removal of millions of new acres from any business pursuit.

The Alliance is particularly proud of its role in getting the Obama team in 2012 to lock up half of Alaska's National Petroleum Reserve--set aside 90 years ago specifically for oil and gas. Rex Rock, the president of the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, which represents the economic interests of the Inupiat Eskimos, wrote that the decision will "cripple the lone economic driver for our communities," and make the Inupiat "exhibits in an outdoor museum."


Unadjectived Capitalism empowers individuals. Conscious Capitalism can employ the tools of production to a statist agenda. Whole Foods pushes organic farming and a dietary vision. REI shuts down an 80 year old business. I'm quite pleased that Mackey has expressed clear appreciation for capitalism and taken some brave stands against ObamaCare®.

I feel I'm attacking a friendly flank, but "Conscious Capitalism" includes some profoundly wrong ideas.

Philosophy Posted by John Kranz at 7:45 AM | What do you think? [0]

February 8, 2013

First World Problems

Anything interesting on Facebook today, jk?

  • I shared the Robin Sachs news.

  • An adorable picture of a soldier with four small puppies -- holler if you didn't see that one.

  • Oh, and this:

Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO) is banned in the European Union and Japan among many other places around the world and is believed to be a harmful additive by many. It is a member of the Bromide family which has been used in making products flame retardant! Google it. See if it's something you think PepsiCo should be putting in Mountain Dew. If they already know it's too controversial for Gatorade, why are they leaving it in Mountain Dew?

Something bad in Mountain Dew? Ehrmigahd!

This is funny but it isn't. The poster is a PhD who used to work for me. Super bright guy with a mortgage and kids. I know he'd laugh himself into a coma upon encountering somebody who does not believe in global warming. But he signs and posts these all the time.

"Google it.' (It's on the Internet -- what else can I do to prove it?) "a member of the Bromide family which has been used in making products flame retardant!" Jeeburz -- one of the elements is four squares away from Arsenic on the Periodic Chart -- you gonna eat that?

Science. Yeah.

Junk Science Posted by John Kranz at 4:11 PM | What do you think? [0]

Hacking Update...

Perhaps it was and perhaps it was not the Chinese Government's trying to shut down this great engine of freedom. But something happened and our search feature has been disabled by "The Man" at lunarpages.com because of runaway CPU loads.

I have removed the box from the sidebar. If you want to search threesources, go to Bing® and type "natalee holloway pictures site:threesources.com" and it searches about 65,174x more quickly than MT's Perl script.


Meanwhile, in [Sad] Buffy News...

RIP, Robin Sachs

robin-sachs.jpg

Farewell, Robin Sachs. The British actor who played Ethan Rayne on Buffy the Vampire Slayer has died, according to his official website. Sachs was 61, and the cause of his death has not been disclosed.

Television Posted by John Kranz at 11:47 AM | What do you think? [0]

Quote of the Day

Those were good times, friends, and they stopped pretty much the minute that liberals and Democrats took control of the federal government. The antiwar movement disappeared once it became clear that Barack Obama wasn't going to shut down Gitmo or stop bombing places or give a rat's ass about that constitutional stuff he used to teach in law school.

But cheer up, because things can always get worse, as the last few days have demonstrated. -- Nick Gillespie
Hat-tip: Insty

What're ya in for, kid?

"I mislabeled a sandwich, but with good behavior, I might be out in three to five..."

Citizens or subjects? One must admit ObamaCare® moves the dial toward the latter.

The proposed regulation would require store owners to label prepared, unpackaged foods found in salad bars and food bars, soups and bakery items. Erik Lieberman, regulatory counsel at the Food Marketing Institute, said testing foods for nutritional data will require either expensive software or even more costly off-site laboratory assessments.

Lieberman said failure to get it right comes with stiff penalties: "If you get it wrong, it's a federal crime, and you could face jail time and thousands of dollars' worth of fines."

Supermarket managers could go to jail if they accidentally mislabel a rotisserie chicken or a salad or a sandwich..

I know, that's FOX News so it's probably completely made up. I won't bother sharing it with my Facebook friends until it is confirmed on MSNBC, Al-Jazeera or some other actual news outlet.

Health Care Posted by John Kranz at 11:21 AM | What do you think? [1]
But johngalt thinks:

There must be a new Home Arrest provision in Obamacare somewhere, for incarcerating all of the new "criminals" found guilty of violating all of the new "laws." I know, you think I'm kidding.

Posted by: johngalt at February 8, 2013 11:59 AM

February 7, 2013

Croft's Pulitzer...

You can't be serious all the time...

Hat-tip: Noel Sheppard

But johngalt thinks:

If Cialis can make that sexy it's a better product than I thought.

Posted by: johngalt at February 8, 2013 12:02 PM

Otequay of the Ayday

"I'm very very compassionate and I'm not out to offend anyone but PC is dangerous, because this country, you see, one of the founding principles was freedom of thought and freedom of expression. And it muffles people. It puts a muzzle on them. And at the same time, keeps people from discussing important issues while the fabric of their society is being changed. And we cannot fall for that trick. And what we need to do is start talking about things. Talking about things that are important. Things that were important in the development of our nation."

-Dr. Ben Carson in his keynote address to the 2012 National Prayer Breakfast

Carson also said, "Forget about unanimity of speech and unanimity of thought and concentrate on being respectful of those people with whom we disagree. That's when I think we start to make real progress."

But Steve D thinks:

Be polite, although you have a right not to be. The question becomes: what if they forbid what you don't want to do, anyway? Then what do you do?

Posted by: Steve D at February 8, 2013 5:00 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Well, when they banned smoking in public I cheered. Now that I see the insatiability of the personal behavior police I have an urge to take up smoking so that I can do it in public. Politely, of course. ;)

Posted by: johngalt at February 8, 2013 5:33 PM

Reflexive Media Censorship

From Sooper Mexican: News Media Scrub Cop Murderer’s Manifesto of Pro-Obama, Hillary, MSNBC, CNN, Gay, and Anti-Gun Comments

News regurgitator Bill Handel is reporting on the KFI radio show that news outlets have been specifically told to post a “redacted” version of the manifesto, in order to protect the names of the police men and women targeted by the murderer – I will replace that portion with police names with the redacted version to protect them. However, it must be noted that the redacted version ALSO doesn’t have the Obama and liberal references.

Highlighted sections from the "Manifesto" are called, "Pro Gun Control, Loves Obama, Fan of Joe Biden, For Hillary 2016, Anti-NRA, MSNBC, CNN Fan, Loves Piers Morgan, Radicalized by Travon Martin Propaganda." Sooper Mexican concluded:

So should MSNBC and Obama be blamed for this murderous scum targeting cops and their families? NO – but if we applied the same standard that the media does conservatives and Republicans, then each of the people on this list contributed to the radicalization of a murderer who has taken 3 lives.

And why did they edit all of this out? Would they do this for a Tea Party shooter? Somehow I doubt it.


The following was copied in its entireity from www.soopermexican.com:

News Media Scrub Cop Murderer’s Manifesto of Pro-Obama, Hillary, MSNBC, CNN, Gay, and Anti-Gun Comments


I’ve been following closely the news story about Chris Dorner, who is now suspected of murdering three people, including one police officer, and shooting another two police officers. He is targeting police and their families for what he says is a corrupt system that robbed him of his name and his life.

You can read all the details here.

However, I started noticing that some of the details the media was talking about didn’t fit the released manifesto I’ve read everywhere. Especially interesting, is that KFI’s morning news regurgitator Bill Handel had mentioned some pro-Obama comments and anti-NRA sentiments in the manifesto.

But these weren’t in the copy that KFI themselves released – see for yourself.

This video from FOX News Los Angeles reports that the manifesto was 22 pages long, while the manifesto released was only 11.

The page where FOX News LA had the manifesto is now deleted. Comments don’t mention the manifesto at all.

KTLA also has the abbreviated manifesto, with this parenthetical: “KTLA has removed the names of a number of officers out of respect for their privacy.”

FOX News reposted the manifesto, with all the names redacted as the authorities asked, but it still doesn’t have the second half.

ABC 7 has also posted a redacted half version of the manifesto.

Being curious, I started looking for a complete copy, but other mainstream news media only had the abbreviated copy.

However, I was able to find a complete copy of the posting, from the website “Crime File News” – the details in it corroborate with the reading that Bill Handel gave on the KFI morning show today.

So why did they edit it?

What’s the difference between posting 11 rambling pages and 21 rambling pages? Look at what’s taken out:

Pro Gun Control:

Who in there right mind needs a fucking silencer!!! who needs a freaking SBR AR15? No one. No more Virginia Tech, Columbine HS, Wisconsin temple, Aurora theatre, Portland malls, Tucson rally, Newtown Sandy Hook. Whether by executive order or thru a bi-partisan congress an assault weapons ban needs to be re-instituted. Period!!!

Mia Farrow said it best. “Gun control is no longer debatable, it’s not a conversation, its a moral mandate.”

Sen. Feinstein, you are doing the right thing in leading the re-institution of a national AWB. Never again should any public official state that their prayers and thoughts are with the family.

Loves Obama:

You disrespect the office of the POTUS/Presidency and Commander in Chief. You call him Kenyan, mongroid, halfrican, muslim, and FBHO when in essence you are to address him as simply, President. The same as you did to President George W. Bush and all those in the highest ranking position of our land before him. Just as I always have. You question his birth certificate, his educational and professional accomplishments, and his judeo-christian beliefs. You make disparaging remarks about his dead parents. You never questioned the fact that his former opponent, the honorable Senator John McCain, was not born in the CONUS or that Bush had a C average in his undergrad. Electoral Candidates children (Romney) state they want to punch the president in the face during debates with no formal repercussions. No one even questioned the fact that the son just made a criminal threat toward the President. You call his wife a Wookie. Off the record, I love your new bangs, Mrs. Obama.

Fan of Joe Biden:

Mr. Vice President, do your due diligence when formulating a concise and permanent national AWB plan. Future generations of Americans depend on your plan and advisement to the president. I’ve always been a fan of yours and consider you one of the few genuine and charismatic politicians.

For Hillary 2016:

Hillary Clinton. You’ll make one hell of a president in 2016. Much like your husband, Bill, you will be one of the greatest. Look at Castro in San Antonio as a running mate or possible secretary of state. He’s (good people) and I have faith and confidence in him. Look after Bill. He was always my favorite President.

Anti-NRA

Wayne LaPierre, President of the NRA, you’re a vile and inhumane piece of shit. You never even showed 30 seconds of empathy for the children, teachers, and families of Sandy Hook.

MSNBC, CNN FAN:

Chris Matthews, Joe Scarborough, Pat Harvey, Brian Williams, Soledad Obrien, Wolf Blitzer, Meredith Viera, Tavis Smiley, and Anderson Cooper, keep up the great work and follow Cronkite’s lead. I hold many of you in the same regard as Tom Brokaw and the late Peter Jennings. Cooper, stop nagging and berating your guest, they’re your (guest). Mr. Scarborough, we met at McGuire’s pub in P-cola in 2002 when I was stationed there. It was an honor conversing with you about politics, family, and life.

Willie Geist, you’re a talented and charismatic journalist. Stop with all the talk show shenanigans and get back to your core of reporting.
Loves Piers Morgan:

…give Piers Morgan an indefinite resident alien and Visa card. Mr. Morgan, the problem that many American gun owners have with you and your continuous discussion of gun control is that you are not an American citizen and have an accent that is distinct and clarifies that you are a foreigner. I want you to know that I agree with you 100% on enacting stricter firearm laws

Radicalized by Trayvon Martin Propaganda:

Too bad Trayvon didn’t smash your skull completely open, Zim.

He further praised Ellen Degeneres, H.W. Bush, Tim Tebow, and many hollywood actresses. He’s obviously disturbed.

So should MSNBC and Obama be blamed for this murderous scum targeting cops and their families? NO – but if we applied the same standard that the media does conservatives and Republicans, then each of the people on this list contributed to the radicalization of a murderer who has taken 3 lives.

And why did they edit all of this out? Would they do this for a Tea Party shooter? Somehow I doubt it.

UPDATE:

News regurgitator Bill Handel is reporting on the KFI radio show that news outlets have been specifically told to post a “redacted” version of the manifesto, in order to protect the names of the police men and women targeted by the murderer – I will replace that portion with police names with the redacted version to protect them. However, it must be noted that the redacted version ALSO doesn’t have the Obama and liberal references.

BELOW: WHAT THE MEDIA CUTS OFF FROM THE MANIFESTO


Whatever pre-planned responses you have established for a scenario like me, shelve it. Whatever contingency plan you have, shelve it. Whatever tertiary plan you’ve created, shelve it. I am a walking exigent circumstance with no OFF or reset button. JRIC, DOJ, LASD, FBI and other local LE can’t assist and should not involve themselves in a matter that does not concern them. For all other agencies, do not involve yourself in this capture or recovery of me. Look at the big picture of the situation. They (LAPD) created the situation. I will harm no outside agency unless it is a deadly force/IDOL situation. With today’s budgeting and fiscal mess, you guys can not afford lose several officers to IOD or KIA/EOW. Plus, other officers should not have to take on the additional duties and responsibilities of dead officers. Think about their families, outside agencies, Chiefs/Directors.


Outside agencies and individual officers on patrol. If you recognize my vehicle, and confirm it is my vehicle thru a dmv/want warrant check. It behoves you to respond to dispatch that your query was for information purposes only. If you proceed with a traffic stop or attempt to notify other officers of my location or for backup you will not live to see the medal of valor you were hoping to receive for your actions. Think before you attempt to intervene. You will not survive. Your family will receive that medal of valor posthumously. It will gather dust on the fireplace mantel for years. Then one day, it will go in a shoe box with other memories. Your mother will lose a son or daughter. Your significant other will be left alone, but they will find someone else to fill your void in the future and make them just as happy. Your children, if you have them, will call someone else mommy or daddy. Don’t be selfish. Your vest is only a level II or IIIA, think about it.


No amount of IMINT, MASINT, and ELINT assist you in capturing me. I am off the grid. You better use your feet, tongue and every available DOD/ NON-DOD HUMINT agency, contractor to find me. I know your route to and from home, and your division. I know your significant others routine, your children’s best friends and recess. I know Your Sancha’s gym hours and routine. I assure you that the casualty rate will be high. Because of that, no one will remember your name. You will merely be a DR# and “that guy” who was KIA/EOW or long term IOD/light duty in the kit room. This is exactly why “station 500″ was created. Unfortunately, orphanages will be making a comeback in the 21st century.


If you had a well regulated AWB, this would not happen. The time is now to reinstitute a ban that will save lives. Why does any sportsman need a 30 round magazine for hunting? Why does anyone need a suppressor? Why does anyone need a AR15 rifle? This is the same small arms weapons system utilized in eradicating Al Qaeda, Taliban, and every enemy combatant since the Vietnam war. Don’t give me that crap that its not a select fire or full auto rifle like the DoD uses. That’s bullshit because troops who carry the M-4/M-16 weapon system for combat ops outside the wire rarely utilize the select fire function when in contact with enemy combatants. The use of select fire probably isn’t even 1% in combat. So in essence, the AR-15 semiautomatic rifle is the same as the M-4/M-16. These do not need to be purchased as easily as walking to your local Walmart or striking the enter key on your keyboard to “add to cart”. All the firearms utilized in my activities are registered to me and were legally purchased at gun stores and private party transfers. All concealable weapons (pistols) were also legally register in my name at police stations or FFL’s. Unfortunately, are you aware that I obtained class III weapons (suppressors) without a background check thru NICS or DROS completely LEGALLY several times? I was able to use a trust account that I created on quicken will maker and a $10 notary charge at a mailbox etc. to obtain them legally. Granted, I am not a felon, nor have a DV misdemeanor conviction or active TRO against me on a NCIC file. I can buy any firearm I want, but should I be able to purchase these class III weapons (SBR’s, and suppressors) without a background check and just a $10 notary signature on a quicken will maker program? The answer is NO. I’m not even a resident of the state i purchased them in. Lock n Load just wanted money so they allow you to purchase class III weapons with just a notarized trust, military ID. Shame on you, Lock n Load. NFA and ATF need new laws and policies that do not allow loopholes such as this. In the end, I hope that you will realize that the small arms I utilize should not be accessed with the ease that I obtained them. Who in there right mind needs a fucking silencer!!! who needs a freaking SBR AR15? No one. No more Virginia Tech, Columbine HS, Wisconsin temple, Aurora theatre, Portland malls, Tucson rally, Newtown Sandy Hook. Whether by executive order or thru a bi-partisan congress an assault weapons ban needs to be re-instituted. Period!!!


Mia Farrow said it best. “Gun control is no longer debatable, it’s not a conversation, its a moral mandate.”


Sen. Feinstein, you are doing the right thing in leading the re-institution of a national AWB. Never again should any public official state that their prayers and thoughts are with the family. That has become cliche’ and meaningless. Its time for action. Let this be your legacy that you bestow to America. Do not be swayed by obstacles, antagaonist, and naysayers. Remember the innocent children at Austin, Kent, Stockton, Fullerton, San Diego, Iowa City, Jonesboro, Columbine, Nickel Mines, Blacksburg, Springfield, Red Lake, Chardon, Aurora, and Newtown. Make sure this never happens again!!!


In my cache you will find several small arms. In the cache, Bushmaster firearms, Remington precision rifles, and AAC Suppressors (silencers). All of these small arms are manufactured by Cerberus/Freedom Group. The same company responsible for the Portland mall shooting, Webster , NY, and Sandy Hook massacre.


You disrespect the office of the POTUS/Presidency and Commander in Chief. You call him Kenyan, mongroid, halfrican, muslim, and FBHO when in essence you are to address him as simply, President. The same as you did to President George W. Bush and all those in the highest ranking position of our land before him. Just as I always have. You question his birth certificate, his educational and professional accomplishments, and his judeo-christian beliefs. You make disparaging remarks about his dead parents. You never questioned the fact that his former opponent, the honorable Senator John McCain, was not born in the CONUS or that Bush had a C average in his undergrad. Electoral Candidates children (Romney) state they want to punch the president in the face during debates with no formal repercussions. No one even questioned the fact that the son just made a criminal threat toward the President. You call his wife a Wookie. Off the record, I love your new bangs, Mrs. Obama. A woman whose professional and educational accomplishments are second to none when compared to recent First wives. You call his supporters, whether black, brown, yellow, or white, leeches, FSA, welfare recipients, and ni$&er lovers. You say this openly without any discretion. Before you start with your argument that you believe I would vote for Obama because he has the same skin color as me, fuck you. I didn’t vote in this last election as my choice of candidate, John Huntsman, didn’t win the primary candidacy for his party. Mr. President, I haven’t agreed with all of your decisions but of course I haven’t agreed with all of your predecessors decisions. I think you’ve done a hell of a job with what you have been dealt and how you have managed it. I shed a tear the night you were initially elected President in 2008. I never thought that day would occur. A black man elected president in the U.S. in my lifetime. I cracked a smiled when you were re-elected in 2012 because I really didn’t think you were going to pull that one off. Romney, stop being a sore loser. You could’ve exited graciously and still contributed significantly to public service, not now. Mr. President, get back to work. Many want to see you fail as they have stated so many times previously. Unfortunately, if you fail, the U.S. fails but your opponents do not concern themselves about the big picture. Do not forget your commitment to transparency in your administration. Sometimes I believe your administration forgets that. America, you will realize today and tomorrow that this world is made up of all human beings who have the same general needs and wants in life for themselves, their kin, community, and state. That is the freedom to LIVE and LOVE. They may eat different foods, enjoy different music, have different dialects, or speak a second language, but in essence are no different from you and I. This is America. We are not a perfect sovereign country as we have our own flaws but we are the closest that will ever exist.


Unfortunately, this is not the first time an authoritative figure has lied on me.


[redacted personal information - SM] Remember when you lied to my mother and the police officer in your office about stating that you never stated to me in a private conversation that you know the theft suspect (Miranda) stole my watch. Let me refresh your memory. A physical education teachers assistant, a student, stole the list of combination codes to peoples lockers, from the P.E. teacher. That student then opened many of those lockers and stole students personal property. My watch was taken in that multi theft an I reported it to you. A week later you discovered that the theft suspect was Paul Miranda, a student. You stated to me in private that you know for a fact he stole my property. When I attempted to retrieve my property from the suspect. Campus security was called and you lied and stated that you never stated to me that you “know he stole my watch”. You sat there and lied to their faces right in front of me. You said it with such a deliberate, stern face. I never forgot that and was not surprised when 13 years later I was lied on again in the BOR by Teresa Evans. maybe you can confess to your family at the very least in the private of your own home. After that, contact my mother and apologize for lying to her in 1996.


If possible, I want my brain preserved for science/research to study the effects of severe depression on an individual’s brain. Since 6/26/08 when I was relieved of duty and 1/2/09 when I was terminated I have been afflicted with severe depression. I’ve had two CT scans during my lifetime that are in my medical record at Kaiser Permanente. Both are from concussions resulting from playing football. The first one was in high school, 10/96. The second was in college and occurred in 10/99. Both were conducted at Kaiser Permanente hospitals in LA/Orange county. These two CT scans should give a good baseline for my brain activity before severe depression began in late 2008.


Sure, many of you “law enforcement experts and specialist” will state, “in all my years this is the worst……..”, Stop!!! That’s not important. Ask yourselves what would cause somebody to take these drastic measures like I did. That’s what is important.


To my friends listed below, I wish we could have grown old together and spent more time together. When you reminisce of our friendship and experiences, think of that and that only. Do not dwell on my recent actions the last few days. This was a necessary evil that had to be executed in order for me to obtain my NAME back. The only thing that changes policy and garners attention is death.
[redacted personal information - SM]


I never saw a wild thing feel sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever feeling sorry for itself. –D.H. Lawrence


[redacted personal information - SM]


You guys were all important and very special to me. Don’t be angry with me. I missed some of your weddings and unfortunately, some of your funerals. This was a necessary evil.


Some say it is my fault that I was terminated. Yes, DDX, I remember you stating this to me in an angry fit. You said that I should have kept my mouth shut about another officer’s misconduct. Maybe you were right. But I’m not built like others, it’s not in my DNA and my history has always shown that. When you view the video of the suspect stating he was kicked by Evans, maybe you will see that I was a decent person after all. I told the truth. It still hurt that you abandoned me in my time of need. I hope you’re happy, that’s all I ever wanted for you.


[redacted personal information - SM]

[redacted personal information - SM] I now know it was your humbleness and respect for all who wear the badge and protect their communities that you didn’t just express what you wanted to say, that they lack values and basic ethics as law enforcement officers. [redacted personal information - SM] your fucking awesome. [redacted personal information - SM] Your realistic approach and empathetic approach to treating all people as humans first is something I carried with me daily. Thank you, every one of you.


[redacted personal information - SM]

[redacted personal information - SM] I learned more from you about leadership than most of my own commanders. You lived by a strict ethos of get it done, and get it done right. I wanted to attend your retirement, I really did. But because of my predicament I was unable to. [redacted personal information - SM]


[redacted personal information - SM] Thank you for the intense instruction and mentorship and time spent forging me into a never quit officer. [redacted personal information - SM] You made sure the vicious and intense personality I possess was discovered. On a lighter note….Don’t feel humbled you never broke me. I made it a personal goal to never give up years before. [redacted personal information - SM]

I thank my friends for the awesome shared experiences. I thank the unnamed women I dated over my lifetime for the great and sometimes not so great sex.


It’s kind of sad I won’t be around to view and enjoy The Hangover III. What an awesome trilogy. Todd Phillips, don’t make anymore Hangovers after the third, takes away the originality of its foundation. World War Z looks good and The Walking Dead season 3 (second half) looked intriguing. Damn, gonna miss shark week.


Mr. Vice President, do your due diligence when formulating a concise and permanent national AWB plan. Future generations of Americans depend on your plan and advisement to the president. I’ve always been a fan of yours and consider you one of the few genuine and charismatic politicians. Damn, sounds like an oxymoron calling you an honest politician. It’s the truth.


Hillary Clinton. You’ll make one hell of a president in 2016. Much like your husband, Bill, you will be one of the greatest. Look at Castro in San Antonio as a running mate or possible secretary of state. He’s (good people) and I have faith and confidence in him. Look after Bill. He was always my favorite President. Chelsea grew up to be one hell of an attractive woman. No disrespect to her husband.


Gov. Chris Christie. What can I say? You’re the only person I would like to see in the White House in 2016 other than Hillary. You’re America’s no shit taking uncle. Do one thing for your wife, kids, and supporters. Start walking at night and eat a little less, not a lot less, just a little. We want to see you around for a long time. Your leadership is greatly needed.


Wayne LaPierre, President of the NRA, you’re a vile and inhumane piece of shit. You never even showed 30 seconds of empathy for the children, teachers, and families of Sandy Hook. You deflected any type of blame/responsibility and directed it toward the influence of movies and the media. You are a failure of a human being. May all of your immediate and distant family die horrific deaths in front of you.


Chris Matthews, Joe Scarborough, Pat Harvey, Brian Williams, Soledad Obrien, Wolf Blitzer, Meredith Viera, Tavis Smiley, and Anderson Cooper, keep up the great work and follow Cronkite’s lead. I hold many of you in the same regard as Tom Brokaw and the late Peter Jennings. Cooper, stop nagging and berating your guest, they’re your (guest). Mr. Scarborough, we met at McGuire’s pub in P-cola in 2002 when I was stationed there. It was an honor conversing with you about politics, family, and life.


Willie Geist, you’re a talented and charismatic journalist. Stop with all the talk show shenanigans and get back to your core of reporting. Your future is brighter than most.


Revoke the citizenship of Fareed Zakaria and deport him. I’ve never heard a positive word about America or its interest from his mouth, ever. On the same day, give Piers Morgan an indefinite resident alien and Visa card. Mr. Morgan, the problem that many American gun owners have with you and your continuous discussion of gun control is that you are not an American citizen and have an accent that is distinct and clarifies that you are a foreigner. I want you to know that I agree with you 100% on enacting stricter firearm laws but you must understand that your critics will always have in the back of their mind that you are native to a country that we won our sovereignty from while using firearms as a last resort in defense and you come from a country that has no legal private ownership of firearms. That is disheartening to American gun owners and rightfully so.


The honorable President George H.W. Bush, they never give you enough credit for your successful Presidency. You were always one of my favorite Presidents (2nd favorite). I hope your health improves greatly. You are the epitome of an American and service to country.


General Petraeus, you made a mistake that the majority of men make once, twice, or unfortunately many times in a lifetime. You are human. You thought with your penis. It’s okay.I personally believe you should have never resigned and told your critics to shove it. You only answer to two people regarding the affair, your wife and children, period. I hope you return to government service to your country as it is visibly in your DNA.


General Colin Powell, your book “My American Journey” solidified my decision to join the military after college. I had always intended to serve, but your book and journey motivated me. You are an inspiration to all Americans and influenced me greatly.


To all SEA’s (senior enlisted advisers), you are just as important if not a greater viability to large and small commands. It’s time you take a more active role in leading your enlisted and advising officers. These are not your twilight years or time to relax. You can either strengthen the tip of the spear, or make it brittle. You decide.


Pat Harvey, I’ve always thought you carried yourself professionally and personally the way a strong black woman should. Your articulation and speech is second to none. You are the epitome of a journalist/anchor. You are America.


Ellen Degeneres, continue your excellent contribution to entertaining America and bringing the human factor to entertainment. You changed the perception of your gay community and how we as Americans view the LGBT community. I congratulate you on your success and opening my eyes as a young adult, and my generation to the fact that you are know different from us other than who you choose to love. Oh, and you Prop 8 supporters, why the fuck do you care who your neighbor marries. Hypocritical pieces of shit.


Westboro Baptist Church, may you all burn slowly in a fire, not from smoke inhalation, but from the flames and only the flames.


Tebow, I really wanted to see you take charge of an offense again and the game. You are not a good QB by todays standards, but you are a great football player who knows how to lead a team and WIN. You will be “Tebowing” when you reach your next team. I have faith in you. Get out of that circus they call the Jets and away from the reality TV star, Rex Ryan, and Mark Rapist Sanchez.


Christopher Walz, you impressed me in Inglorious Basterds. After viewing Django Unchained, I was sold. I have come to the conclusion that you are well on your way to becoming one of the greats if not already and show glimpses of Daniel Day Lewis and Morgan Freeman-esque type qualities of greatness. Trust me when I say that you will be one of the greatest ever.


Jennifer Beals, Serena Williams, Grae Drake, Lisa Nicole-Carson, Diana Taurasi, N’bushe Wright, Brenda Villa, Kate Winslet, Ashley Graham, Erika Christensen, Gabrielle Union, Isabella Soprano, Zain Verjee, Tamron Hall, Gina Carano, America Ferrara, Giana Michaels, Nene, Natalie Portman, Queen Latifah, Michelle Rodriguez, Anjelah Johnson, Kelly Clarkson, Nora Jones, Laura Prepon, Margaret Cho, and Rutina Wesley, you are THE MOST beautiful women on this planet, period. Never settle, professionally or personally.


Dave Brubeck’s “Take Five” is the greatest piece of music ever, period. Hanz Zimmer, William Bell, Eric Clapton, BB King, Bob Marley, Sam Cooke, Metallica, Rob Zombie, Nora Jones, Marvin Gaye, Jay-Z, and the King (Louis Armstrong) are musical prodigies.


Jeffrey Toobin and David Gergen, you are political geniuses and modern scholars. Hopefully Toobin is nominated for the Supreme Court and implements some damn common sense and reasoning instead of partisan bickering. But in true Toobin fashion, we all know he would not accept the nomination.
,
John and Ken from KFI, never mute your facts and personal opinions. You are one of the few media personalities who speak the truth, even when the truth is not popular. I will miss listening to your discussions.


Bill Handel, your effin awesome. For years I enjoyed your show.


Anthony Bourdain, you’re a modern renaissance man who epitomizes the saying “too cool for school”.


Larry David, Kevin Hart, the late Patrice Oneal, Lisa Lampanelli, Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld, Louis CK, Dave Chapelle, Jon Stewart, Wanda Sykes, Dennis Miller, and Jeff Ross are pure geniuses. I’m a big fan of all of your work. As a child my mom caught me watching Def Jam comedy at midnight when I should have been asleep. Instead of scolding me, the next night she let me stay up late and watch George Carlin, Eddie Murphy and Richard Pryor comedy specials with her for hours. My sides were sore for days.


Larry David, I agree. 72-82 degrees is way to hot in a residence. 68 , degrees is perfect.


Cyclist, I have no problem sharing the road with you. But, at least go the fucking speed limit posted or get off the road!!! That is a feasible request. Livestrong you fraudulent assholes.


Cardinal Mahoney, you are in essence a predator yourself as you enabled your subordinates to molest multiple children in the church over many decades. May you die a long and slow painful death.


If you continuously followed me while I was walking at dusk/night I would confront you as well. Too bad Trayvon didn’t smash your skull completely open, Zim. While Trayvon’s body erodes to bones 6 feet under, Zimmerman has put on no less than 40 pounds while out on bail. Zimmerman was arrested for battery on a Peace officer and avoided jail/prison because he completed a diversion program. Thats a history of being an asshole. Zimmerman couldn’t get hired by a LE agency because of poor credit/and a history of violence/restraining orders with women. So what does he do? Designate himself, neighborhood watch captain and make complaints to his city council about the horrible work ethic and laziness of the officers patrolling his neighborhood. Good one Zim. How classy that your father attempts to use his veterans status “disabled veteran” during your bail hearing but doesn’t state what his disability percentage is. Prior service personnel know it can be 5% disability to 100%. You and your attorneys always avoid mentioning your fathers occupation as a magistrate/judge because I’m sure he’s utilized his position to get you out of way more jams then the public has discovered and that your family is not indigent. Oh, tell your wife to stop perjuring herself in court.


KCCO


Anonymous, you are hated, vilified, and considered an enemy to the state. I personally view you as a culture and a necessity that brings truth to a cloaked world. Forge ahead!


Charlie Sheen, you’re effin awesome.


My opinion on women in combat MOS’, Designators, Rates, and AFSC’s. I wish all of you who attempt to pursue combat occupational roles the greatest success in completing, graduating, and qualifying in their respective schools/courses. Many want to see you fail. Remember, everyone of you is a pioneer. There was a time when they didn’t allow blacks to fight the good fight. This is your civil rights. Don’t quit!!!


It’s time to allow gay service member’s spouses to utilize the same benefits that all heterosexual dependents are eligible for. Medical, Dental, Tricare, Deers, SGLI, BX, Commissary, Milstar, MWR, etc. Flag officers, lets be honest. You can’t really give a valid argument to as why gays shouldn’t be eligible as every month a new state enacts laws that allow same sex marriage.


LGBT community and supporters, the same way you have the right to voice your opinion on acceptance of gay marriage, Chick Fil-A has a right to voice their beliefs as well. That’s what makes America so great. Freedom of expression. Don’t be assholes and boycott/degrade their business and customers who patronize the locations. They make some damn good chicken! Vandalizing (graffiti) their locations does not help any cause.


Mr. Bill Cosby, you are a reasonable and talented man who has spoken the truth of the cultural anomalies within the black communities that need to change now. The black communities’ resentment toward you is because they don’t like hearing the truth or having their clear and evident dirty laundry aired to the nation. The problem is, the country is not blind nor dumb. They believe we are animals. Do not mute your unvarnished truthful speech or moral compass. Blacks must strive for more in life than bling, hoes, and cars. The current culture is an epidemic that leaves them with no discernible future. They’re suffocating and don’t even know it. MLK Jr. Would be mortified at what he worked so hard for in our acceptance as equal beings and how unfortunately we stopped progressing and began digressing. Chicago’s youth violence is a prime example of how our black communities values have declined. We can not address this nation’s intolerant issues until we address our own communities morality issues first. Accountability. We need to hold ou”
Wow. I don’t even know how to end. So I’ll just end.

But Keith Arnold thinks:

And how surprised were we when we first discovered that in real life, MiniTrue turned out to be not a government agency, but a suborned press? As a wholly-owned subsidiary of Washington, they non-person anything that doesn't fit the narrative.

The Fourth Estate is a fifth column.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 7, 2013 5:07 PM
But jk thinks:
But johngalt thinks:

Nice link. It dovetails with another theme in the Ben Carson speech (prior post, not this one): "Well they should have said something." Ben said something. Much of what he said was diametrically opposed to what the President routinely says, and yet the President could not, if he tried, legitimately rebut a word of it.

Posted by: johngalt at February 7, 2013 7:55 PM

Media: "Move Along, Nothing to See"

President Obama attended the annual National Prayer Breakfast this morning and heard a "surprise guest speaker" deliver the keynote address. Yahoo Finance quoted the speaker, Reknowned pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson, in this article.

"I wanted to emphasize the roles faith, values and principles have played in the success of our nation."

(...)

"E pluribus unum means 'out of many one,'" said Carson. "At this critical time in our nation's history, we must remember that 'a house divided against itself cannot stand'. If we learn from the past, we can stand tall in the future."

America the Beautiful calls citizens to use their "God-given talents to improve our lives, our communities, our nation and our world," said Carson. "And I pray that God used my opportunity to reach our entire government for His glory."

But I am not a media mouthpiece so I have no reluctance to cite alternative sources to PR Newswire. Glenn Beck's The Blaze, for example.

The speech took an interesting turn when the doctor cautioned that moral decay and fiscal irresponsibility can have dire consequences — even for powerful countries like America. Here, he became even more pointed and impassioned.

“I think particularly about ancient Rome. Very powerful — nobody could even challenge them militarily…they destroyed themselves from within,” Carson continued. “Moral decay. Fiscal irresponsibility.”

While he said America’s issues are dire, he was positive that the nation can fix its ways, as there are bright and innovative people who simply need to come together to address the problems at hand.

“And one of our big problems right now…our deficit is a big problem,” he said, as Obama watched him intently. ”Think about it — and our national debt — $16 and a half trillion dollars.”

But even this doesn't do it justice. You just have to watch it yourself.

UPDATE: Here is the entire event, running some 82 minutes in length. Dr. Carson begins at 35:00, with an introduction starting 1 minute prior.

I have not yet done so but I encourage a full viewing. 26 minutes. But the bit I want to highlight begins around 16:30, and gets really interesting around 19:00. Don't stop before you reach 22:00. (And don't forget to watch the President's reactions.)

On the original flat tax, the tithe:

"He didn't say if your crops fail, don't give me any tithe. He didn't say if you have a bumper crop give me triple tithe. So there must be something inherently fair about proportionality. You make ten billion dollars, you put in a billion. You make ten dollars, you put in one. (...) Now some people say, 'Now that's not fair because it doesn't hurt the guy who made ten billion dollars as much as it hurts the guy who made ten.' Where does it say you have to hurt the guy? He just put a billion dollars in the pot! You know, we don't need to hurt him."

But dagny thinks:

Hate to quibble here but the tithe, although it may be an appropriate example to follow was NOT a flat tax as described here. It was a flat RATE tax. That distinction is important for our current tax happy government to remember.

Posted by: dagny at February 7, 2013 7:22 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I think that erroneous description is all mine, not the good doctor's. But the reader will have to watch to find out! Good catch.

Posted by: johngalt at February 7, 2013 7:47 PM

February 6, 2013

On Underwear Models...

You would not think that 9:38 spent looking at an attractive underwear model could be so unfulfilling. But Cameron Russell's TED talk is a downer.

Ms. Russell is the Warren Buffett of pulchritude. She has plenty but is suspicious of it. She doesn't appreciate her industry and she doesn't appreciate her career. She "won the lottery with her looks" and is the right color -- but it is all very silly. You pretend to walk for the camera, and the dirty hyper-sexualized producers retouch the photos.

Now I don't follow models too closely (restraining order) but, like Buffett, I am happy to defend their career even when they are not. It's not "Powerball." Like any performance career, I have no doubt it is difficult, capricious, and subject to "tournament remuneration," what Taleb calls Mandelbrotian distribution, with a few superstars making most of the money. I'm not sure I'd counsel a young person into taking it up.

And yet, may I say "Lighten Up, Cameron?" No doubt the extremely ugly people who attend TED talks in person and most of the 1.1 million viewers of the video enjoy your message of how unimportant and ephemeral beauty is. But I choose to celebrate the system that provides billions of dollars to support art, fashion, and models, like millions for a pink dress.

I must share a web site that celebrates the other side: whoisthathotadgirl.tumblr.com. This is not as prurient a site as it sounds from its moniker. The lads at WITHAG actually humanize the "hot ad girls" with a name and a career path. Many are models, some are musicians, comediennes (does anybody use the gendered term anymore?), or dramatic actresses.

But I enjoy advertising after spending some time in the biz with my Dad, and working the client side for a while at my present company. Post Super Bowl, I unabashedly salute the people who spend millions to make a 30 second film for us. Some of these attractive young ladies were genetically fortunate, but I am not ready to denigrate their career or industry. It's a hunk of the world of commerce and specialization that I celebrate.

Posted by John Kranz at 8:13 PM | What do you think? [2]
But jk thinks:

At last! Underwear models instead of Monetary Policy! I think we're starting to figure stuff out around here...

I'm onsite at work most of the day again on Thursday. I leave you links to models -- you may talk amongst yourselves.

Posted by: jk at February 6, 2013 7:52 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Unearned Guilt on parade.

"Saying that you want to be a model when you grow up is akin to saying that you want to win the Powerball when you grow up." An understandable mistake, if she fell into her profession without any intent or desire. A better analogy is professional sports. Yes, your genetics play a large part in your prospect for success and, therefore, wealth, but effort is required. More effort than merely choosing which famous people's birthdates to choose as your "lucky numbers."

Another factor in her self-deprication is that, as I like to say, "everything is easy when you know how to do it." Modeling comes so easy to her she doesn't even think of it as work.

Posted by: johngalt at February 7, 2013 2:20 PM

A Rant is Clearly Required

<rant>
These ^&!@*^ing people have a lot to answer for!

Ranting is not my thing, but we sit back and let "them" push "these things" through.

We know better. We knew about ethanol mandates. We knew about plastic bag bans. We knew about the moronically foolish inefficacy of Kyoto. And yet, these predictable policy train wrecks keep happening.

San Francisco's Plastic Bag Ban Kills About 5 People A Year

I was aware of the negative economic consequences of plastic bag bans and plastic bag taxes, both for bag manufacturers and businesses that use the bags. I was also aware that when you raise the price of things (as the plastic bag tax does in places like D.C.), you make things harder for the people least able to adjust to arbitrary price increases -- the poor. And I was aware that any environmental benefit we're likely to see from bag bans and bag taxes is speculative at best.

I was not aware that the plastic bag bans have a death toll, as Ramesh Ponnuru writes in Bloomberg:


Ponnuru offers a novel; suggestion: how about leaving people alone?
The authors argue, not completely convincingly, against the idea that regular washing and drying of reusable bags would solve the problem. They point out that the use of hot water and detergent imposes environmental costs, too. And reusable bags require more energy to make than plastic ones. The stronger argument, it seems to me, is that 97 percent figure: Whatever the merits of regularly cleaning the bags, it doesn't appear likely to happen.

The best course for government, then, is probably to encourage people to recycle their plastic bags -- or, maybe, just let people make their own decisions. Plastic-bag bans are another on a distressingly long list of political issues where I cannot see eye to eye with Eva Longoria.


Like ethanol. There is NO BENEFIT (see, it is a rant if you use all caps!). It is a non-solution to a problem that may or may not exist. Yet, undeterred, they'll be on to their next big fix, ignoring the hungry Guatemalans and dead infected Americans in the wake of previous "successes."
</rant>

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

Huzzah! Imagine the benefit to society if government, and the media which drives much of its behavior, instead focused its considerable resources on issues of greater import, e.g. how many squares of toilet tissue Eva Longoria uses in the loo.

Posted by: johngalt at February 6, 2013 6:29 PM
But Steve D thinks:

Who cares if washing the bags will happen or not? The best course for the government is to sit down, shut up and no run around banning anything and everything they see.

Posted by: Steve D at February 8, 2013 5:30 PM

Global Warming Solved!

By ThreeSources favorite, Jeremy Clarkson's innovative P-45

Hat-tip: Insty

But johngalt thinks:

Just days ago I witnessed an above average girthed gentleman piloting a "Smart" Car. He appeared to be painted to the inside of the glass. Dear Jeremy would now probably give the clothes off his back for the spacious cabin of a "Smart."

Any word yet from UK enviro-police about the gratutitous spill of 0.3 litres of petrol?

Posted by: johngalt at February 6, 2013 2:44 PM
But jk thinks:

You would not expect it from an MR2 guy, but I loathe the smart car. It's more ostentatious than economical and lacks small car handling -- get a real one like a Mini Cooper or a Mister or a Beetle.

Posted by: jk at February 6, 2013 4:47 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"Innovative"? Puh-leeeeze. The Japanese had it twenty years ago - and called it Mobile Suit Gundam. Except they had more horsepower. And they flew. And had weapons.

My first glance at the license plate, I misread it as "R2D2."

Of course it's British. It's a Dalek, with a coat of white paint.

And for the record, the placement of the filler cap is mildly suggestive. Along the lines of "is that unleaded, or are you just happy to see me?"

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 6, 2013 5:06 PM
But Mrs. Keith Arnold thinks:

Shades of Mr. Bean sans the Rowan Atkinson's hilarious facial expressions.

Who thinks up this stuff?

Posted by: Mrs. Keith Arnold at February 7, 2013 6:48 PM
But johngalt thinks:

The English, dear MKA, the English. They are right looney, the lot of them.

Posted by: johngalt at February 7, 2013 7:48 PM

February 4, 2013

Quote of the Day

The [NYTimes] editors continue:
It is tempting to dismiss her notion that an AR-15 is a woman's best friend as the kooky reflex response of someone ideologically opposed to gun control laws...
Hmm, it is tempting to dismiss this editorial as the kooky reflex response of someone who thinks banning scary looking guns will make scary things go away. VERY tempting... Just One Minute -- h/t Blog Friend Terri

And One Dark Day

On February 3, 1913, Delaware became the 36th state to ratify the Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution. In 30 fateful words it read, "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration."
What could possibly go wrong?

Great backstory from John Steele Gordon at AEI.

Government Posted by John Kranz at 1:21 PM | What do you think? [0]

Thus Begins Seven Months of Darkness

Several superior locutions have entered my lexicon thanks to blog friend -- and longtime personal friend --sc. This one might be from his lovely bride, but the day after the Super Bowl is the start of "Seven Months of Darkness" without professional football. One of them said it casually, but we have gravely intoned it in our home every winter since.

I'm troubled by changes to the game for player safety. Let me say that -- apart from Ray Lewis -- I like the idea of player safety and applaud all efforts to protect pros and more importantly, younger athletes.

Yet, one thing our culture does very poorly, all the time is assess risk. [Short on-topic digression: don't wait for Review Corner to buy and tread Nassim Taleb's "Antifragility;" it is a thing of beauty.] Our least rational risk assessment concerns personal safety. We see it in the gun rights debate. For the most egregious examples, read "America's Worst Mom," Lenore Skenazy's Free Range Kids. Statistically insignificant examples of "stranger danger" are creating a generation that will never see the sunshine. Runaway Toyotas anybody?

When the media and lawyers get on a tear, data does not stand a chance.

I have not studied the data on youth football and accept that new links are being found. These are worthy of investigation, worthy of equipment research, and worthy of potential rules changes. Fran Tarkington published an interesting piece accusing the NFL of punting on performance enhancing drugs, resulting in larger players and a concomitantly more violent game. Interesting.

But we all know these interesting and valid items will drive neither the debate nor the remedies. Those will all be driven by breathless media narratives and lawsuits. Steve Chapman:

If football falls into decline, it may not be the result of fans turning away, athletes avoiding it, or parents forbidding it. It may be from lawyers representing players who sustained chronic traumatic encephalopathy and expect to be compensated for the damage.

Already, more than 4,000 former players are suing the NFL, claiming it failed to warn them of the hazards. The family of San Diego Chargers great Junior Seau, whose autopsy revealed CTE after his suicide last year, has filed a wrongful death suit against the league. The Seaus are also accusing Riddell Inc. of making unsafe helmets.

The Plaintiff's Bar has ruined everything else, why not instantiate permanent darkness?

Sports Posted by John Kranz at 11:25 AM | What do you think? [4]
But johngalt thinks:

As a young boy growing up in a nice Denver neighborhood I was addressed by a middle-aged male in an old four door sedan. As I cautiously approached within earshot I observed that the man appeared fully nude and, for some reason I did not then understand, had one hand in his lap. My personal stat for lifetime contact with a potentially dangerous stranger is 100 percent.

In a comparable situation I would hope that any of my children would be at least as wise as I was to run away, but my preference is that my children be within sight of a responsible adult at all times. Along with the likelyhood of any risk must also be considered the severity of it ocurring.

I suggest that the same analysis applies to contact sports. A responsible adult may assume whatever risk he chooses, GIVEN ALL OF THE KNOWLEDGE HE HAS AT THE TIME. If new information comes to light he may reconsider at any time. Nobody forced anyone to play football. Nor girls soccer for that matter, where college level players are more than twice as likely to sustain a concussion than is a football player, according to Jim Nantz. But the key here is that the decision is an INDIVIDUAL one. Not the government's and not "society's." These notions are the inevitable result of the movement to grant a so-called "right to free medical care."

Posted by: johngalt at February 4, 2013 3:36 PM
But jk thinks:

We're on the same page on football. I see the individual parent decision's being made at the NY Times or Bar association. An emailer last night -- a parent with athletic offspring -- suggested that soon grade school athletics just will not be able to acquire insurance for these activities and will close them down. On the Journal Editorial Report last weekend, Paul Gigot recounted his athletic career and mused about all the absolute benefits that could have been lost over potential risk.

On your personal story, I don't want to exceed my bounds; feel free to not respond or tell me to jump in the lake. But I wonder whether you would trade the bulk of your autonomous childhood experiences: riding your bike alone and staying out with your friends for having an adult around the time it was most needed.

I think it is swell that we no longer throw the kids in the back of a station wagon and drive down I-40 through the desert at 90 mph on bias ply tires. But like many of those that survived, I wonder that the padded playground with no monkey bars impedes the child's ability to accurately assess risk.

Posted by: jk at February 5, 2013 6:36 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I submit it is not too early to start writing your congressman asking that Obamacare be expanded to cover grade school athletic injuries, explicitly indemnifying public and private schools from liability.

As for your hypothetical, it is easy now to answer "No, I choose my freedom over my safety" as I now know I suffered no injury at the hands of a nefarious stranger. But consider the impact on those who have, as summarized on page 16 of this state (Colorado) mandated Community Notification of a Sexually Violent Predator's parole into a small community.

As for the statistical significance, refer to pages 14-15. Admittedly up to 90 percent are not strangers, but the danger is no less real or severe.

I fully agree that the impulse to avoid everyday risks is generally overblown, just not in the case of sexual assaults.

Posted by: johngalt at February 6, 2013 2:58 PM
But jk thinks:

February 3, 2013

Conscious, Huh?

John Mackey's Conscious Capitalism is a free-range chicken sandwich, on a whole grain roll with mustard, tofu and arugula. With a side of quinoa salad. Some good stuff, but it just does not work.

Libertarians of all typographical cases are celebrating the book's release for its full-throated, fulsome defense of free market capitalism. And they are right.

In the long arc of history, no human creation has had a greater positive impact on more people more rapidly than free-enterprise capitalism. It is unquestionably the greatest system for innovation and social cooperation that has ever existed.

Mackey, John; Sisodia, Rajendra (2012-12-25). Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business (Kindle Locations 352-354). Harvard Business Review Press. Kindle Edition.


Mackey quotes Hayek, and Deidre McClosky. He knows and lives his Adam Smith. I dance at the idea that a huge hunk of patchouli stained college-know-it-all hippies will be exposed, for the first time, to the fundamental moral case for freedom and property rights. Veritably goose pimply.

And yet Mackey will not be walking away with as many stars as you're expecting. My Randian brothers and sisters have explained the problems with believing the right thing for the wrong reason, and I have struggled with that. I seek "Mutual Forbearance" like President Van Buren. I look to build political coalitions around common beliefs and have watched the liberty-minded bifurcate themselves into oblivion. Conscious Capitalism is Exhibit A for the defense.

If the book is 33% defense of Capitalism, it is undermined by the next 33%. This is "Conscious" Capitalism. And like President George W. Bush's "Compassionate" Conservatism, the modifier negates the noun.

Capitalism is swell, says Mackey, but we need to get past it to a squishy loving and caring capitalism that is not measured so much on profit as saving the world and being really groovy. Most readers would say that is unfair, but I got off to a bad start as the book's foreword by Medtronic's Bill George takes a swipe at a hero of mine:

I first discovered John Mackey's philosophies when I read his 2005 debate with Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman about the way capitalism works. Shortly before Friedman's death, Mackey challenged his view that the only responsibility of business is to its shareholders, which financial markets have translated into its short-term stock price. [Italics in original]

Mackey would hang his hat on the italics and accuse me of reading in things he did not write. And he'd probably point out that I am overweight from eating too much animal fats. But I'm with Friedman -- and bacon. Capital is a scarce resource -- are we going to allocate it based on value or social conscience? I fear I am being too harsh and welcome correction -- every ThreeSourcer should buy and read this book.

If 33% is defense of capitalism and 33% is exposition of his "conscious," new-and-improved capitalism, the remaining third is a business management book, a'la Pete Drucker or Steven Covey. Mackey has been wildly successful. He has generated incredible wealth and value and built one of the world's most respected brands. His business acumen is well worth sharing.

Does it square the circle? There is a great business case to be made for treating stakeholders well; there is no better leadership than instilling a higher purpose in your team; and all these things add shareholder value, which Friedman would appreciate. Mackey is gracious with approbation for other leaders of innovative companies: Costco, Southwest Airlines, &c. who have also created amazing shareholder value with the concepts espoused.

Yet at the end of the day, I see Conscious Capitalism as an out. Well, me missed our quarter, but the new Thursday all-day Yoga sessions are really going to help us connect with our feelings.

A couple of years ago, we saw a billboard for CareerBuilder.com at a bus shelter in New York City. The sign read, "If your company cared, it would be in the caring business." This is a sad but largely true statement; too many companies do not care and are not designed to care about anything other than their own prosperity.

Huh? What? With heavy heart, I apportion only 2.5 stars.

UPDATE: I'm being defensive before anybody even offers criticism, but I suggest John Allison performed the same task with philosophical purity. His [Unadjectived] Capitalism is no less empowering than Mackey's CC: workers are happy and management practices integrity. Yet Allison recognizes that capital is a scarce resource and proper allocation requires conventional scorekeeping.

Review Corner Posted by John Kranz at 11:06 AM | What do you think? [0]

February 1, 2013

Bank Incentives

Blog friend EE has an article in National Review Online (well done, man!) on Reshaping Bank Incentives.

It's great in its own right, and it's EE. But what most grabbed me was that it solved a philosophical conundrum of mine. I gave Edward Conard's Unintended Consequences a five star Review Corner. And I'll stick by my lead paragraph: "Why didn't we nominate this Bain guy?"

Conard is a free market guy and smart as a whip. But Unintended Consequences advocates a huge role for the Fed and Treasury as lender of last resort. Without government playing JP Morgan's role, banks would have to devote too much capital to reserves, and growth would be stifled. Better to enjoy the benefits of liquidity -- and have Hank Paulson come in and mop things up after the party gets out of hand.

I know some ThreeSourcers are weeping in their cappuccinos over that last paragraph, but you have to accept the hossness of the source. It's a credible, Hamiltonian position, and Conard is no Karl Marx. He just accepts the Fed's maintaining guardrails. And I had no answer that was as sound economically as it was philosophically.

Until now. Hendrickson's "Double liability" strikes me as a free market answer to balance capital reserves with bank profits that facilitate growth. I wonder that you could not package the secondary assessments to shareholders as insurance and create a market for this risk (and trade derivatives off it, but I might be getting ahead of myself).

It is a thoughtful piece that contains a real solution and a free market solution to bank regulation.

But johngalt thinks:

I look forward to reading it in light of the story I heard on NPR this morning of the "too big to fail" Icelandic bank which did, indeed, fail. Iceland bailed out all depositors who vote in Iceland, but none from foreign lands. Other European states are stepping up to bail out the depositors who vote in their land. Who loses? Taxpayers. Who wins? Unclear. Still waiting for Jon Corzine to remember where he put those missing $billions.

Posted by: johngalt at February 1, 2013 3:36 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I still remember the day my mother explained depositor insurance to me as a young boy. "Even if the bank goes out of business, the government will make sure you get all of your money back." It seemed like a great reassurance to me at the time, but even then I did wonder where the government got the money to do this. More importantly though is the transference of risk that EE talks about. It's analogous to licensing a Fugu chef without first making him eat his own product. Someone may be harmed, even die, by his bad performance, but at least it won't be him. What's to worry about?

Posted by: johngalt at February 3, 2013 12:42 AM

Country Song

I got the title!

McConnell on immigration, guns, bourbon and Ashley Judd

It's in G...

On the web Posted by John Kranz at 8:43 AM | What do you think? [0]

Don't click this. Comments (2)