November 19, 2014

Major Media Reports on the Gruber Videos!

Well, Jon Stewart did.

Happy that some of my friends will see a reference to this. But the allure of this man still eludes me. There are a couple good lines (video at the link) but the "comedy" drags on for minutes of angry, passive-aggressive rants. I watch the show 1/1000 as much as my friends and I tire of the same setups. De gustibus, I guess.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:39 PM | Comments (2)
But nanobrewer thinks:

Do those same friends regularly heap opprobrium on Fox? A little bit of JS goes a long way; once every 8-9 months does me fine (that's about as often as I'm aware of him taking on the left).

Posted by: nanobrewer at November 21, 2014 2:44 AM
But jk thinks:

Yeah, how'd you guess?

Now, I know we're the stoopid ones and all, but the divide is not MSNBC vs. FOX News -- the ratings make that clear. The real divide is FOX News vs. The Comedy Channel. A news organization with thousands of journalists, foreign offices, and a network of local affiliates -- against a guy who sings "Fuck You" songs.

Stewart's biggest schtick is bashing FOX. I've said a thousand times I'm not FOX's biggest fan. But Stewart intentionally conflates commentary, news, and the light entertainment news. Then he edits them to make them look as bad as possible and feeds to his crowd. They then know they are the smarterest people in the world, and that anything on FOX is wrong.

All's fair to a point. But when only FOX covers Benghazi, and now #GruberGate, he effectively brings the only non-lap dog to heel.

Like you, I suspect, I see him when a clip comes around of him bashing the Administration or figures on the left. (And this link doesn't count. He has been tough on his side but not here.) I cannot even enjoy it then. I don't like his style and I strongly oppose what he stands for. Fair and accurate journalism is difficult, discarding both in an attempt to make it funny (but still take me seriously) grates.

Posted by: jk at November 21, 2014 10:24 AM

November 13, 2014

Journalistic Malfeasance

Interesting story on the "why didn't the Gruber tapes surface earlier?" question we've pondered below. It's a good story, ridiculing at one point Bloomberg's choice of a pull quote of the self-deprecating citizen journalist.

I'm going to risk pulling a single quote out of their piece. But why didn't they find it? They were not looking.

The Associated Press deserves a special mention here. AP assigned eleven reporters to review 2008 Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin's book in 2009, but wire service health reporter Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and others involved in covering the Affordable Care Act during the past several years somehow never found (or if they found it or knew it, never reported it) what Weinstein was able to find. How can that be? (That said, Obamacare's opponents didn't find it either, which makes one wonder how they could also be so ineffective.)

Posted by John Kranz at 2:40 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

The right needs a better grade of internet troll. Or at least, more of them.

Posted by: johngalt at November 13, 2014 2:50 PM

October 24, 2014

Bias.

Best of Cain suggests possible media bias.

The AP story:

A Palestinian motorist with a history of anti-Israel violence slammed his car into a crowded train station in Jerusalem on Wednesday, killing a three-month-old baby girl and wounding eight people in what police called a terror attack.

The AP/Yahoo Headline:
Israeli police shoot man in east Jerusalem

Yup.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:28 PM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2014

Three Sources Radio!

In the comments for yesterday's What We Fight For post I mentioned that I plugged the blog in a call to Grassroots Radio Colorado yesterday evening. Want to know what yours truly sounds like? Tune in to the podcast.

Start at 23:00, but if you're in a hurry skip to 26:50. But I recommend starting at 23:00.

The rest of the show was pretty good too, including both Tom Tancredo and state senator Kevin Lundberg agreeing with what I'd said and expanding on it. Listen through to the end if you have time.

That's Grassroots Radio Colorado, with my super cool friend Kris Cook on 560 am KLZ in Denver, weekdays 5-7 pm Mountain Time. (5-6 on Fridays.) Check it out!!

Tune in live on the internet here.

Posted by JohnGalt at 4:09 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

And he hawks threesources.com! Well played, sir!

You did well but I had listened to the whole thing and was still reeling from Rep. Tancredo saying "Republicans should all get together and campaign on opposition to immigration!"

Posted by: jk at October 21, 2014 4:55 PM

October 17, 2014

Ezra Klein Digs Deeper

Ze Vox Wünderkind doubles down on a non-correction, and Sean Davis delivers a takedown (what we used to call it a "fisking" during the tech bubble):

Look, I get that this is Vox, and that expecting basic fact-checking from a TMZ-style celebrity photo click farm is about as reasonable as expecting a full day's worth of nutrition from a Pop Tart and a pack of Skittles, but come on. This isn't that hard. It's not like somebody asked Ezra Klein to tell us how old the Constitution is.

Editor's Note: In light of the Klein-bashing over the past few days, I need to clarify something. I suggested in a comment that FOX-31's Eli Stokels was "Colorado's Ezra Klein." I meant that he is young, left-biased, assigned to the political beat, and yes, perhaps, maybe just a little smarmy or arrogant. I do not assert that he is as "illiberal a liberal" as Klein.

With that keen endorsement, I'll move along...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)

October 16, 2014

For the record

There is a standing protocol, established by CDC, for protection of caregivers treating Ebola patients. for "Viral hemorrhagic fevers due to Lassa, Ebola, Marburg, Crimean-Congo fever viruses:"

Single-patient room preferred. Emphasize: 1) use of sharps safety devices and safe work practices, 2) hand hygiene; 3) barrier protection against blood and body fluids upon entry into room (single gloves and fluid-resistant or impermeable gown, face/eye protection with masks, goggles or face shields); and 4) appropriate waste handling. Use N95 or higher respirators when performing aerosol-generating procedures. Largest viral load in final stages of illness when hemorrhage may occur; additional PPE, including double gloves, leg and shoe coverings may be used, especially in resource-limited settings where options for cleaning and laundry are limited. Notify public health officials immediately if Ebola is suspected 212, 314, 740, 772Also see Table 3 for Ebola as a bioterrorism agent

While OSHA is a separate matter, CDC has established a protocol. Take that, sensationalizers.

Posted by JohnGalt at 12:23 PM | Comments (0)

Just Sayin'

Perhaps if we started executing some WaPo journalists for rank stupidity -- whether warranted or not -- the salubrious effects on Ezra Klein the others and would make it worthwhile.

UPDATE: A more measured take from Jonathan Chait.

Posted by John Kranz at 9:27 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

My sentiment as well, after reading Klein's rationalization for totalitarian thuggery "ugly problems don't always have pretty solutions."

Chait said: "Ezra Klein is not a nut; he is the polar opposite of one, which is what makes it so important that he is arguing in such expressly illiberal terms."

Bravo! All this open and public talk about the illiberalism of the left (and wherever else it be found, but especially, now, on the left) warms my heart and gives me an optimism for hopeful change.

Or the bumper sticker version:

I HOPE that liberals will CHANGE their illiberal ways.

Posted by: johngalt at October 16, 2014 12:16 PM

October 14, 2014

Tweet of the Day

Would I it were not true. Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 4:28 PM | Comments (0)

October 13, 2014

Don Beaudreaux Wins the Internet this Week!

With his letter to the NYTimes:

Paul Krugman suggests that "deficit scolds" ignore two important facts: first, any net harm to human well-being generated by government deficits are "uncertain"; second, even if such harm does materialize, it won't do so for many years ("Secret Deficit Lovers," Oct. 10).

Whether or not Mr. Krugman is correct in his fiscal analysis, it's striking that in other of his writings he sides aggressively with those who we might call "carbon scolds" -- people who ignore two important facts: first, any net harm to human well-being generated by climate change is uncertain; second, even if such harm does materialize, it won't do so for many years.


I weep at its beauty.

UPDATE: Boudreaux also has a guest editorial in the WSJ today. If I may paraphrase for those with no susbscription, the GMU economics professor and law professor Todd Zywicki, say "Hayek told you so!" to the developers of Dodd-Frank and the PPACAo2010.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:31 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Yes, it is truly, sublime.

And as such, is completely beyond the grasp of our brethren who knoweth not the identity of Joseph Biden.

Posted by: johngalt at October 13, 2014 2:21 PM

October 10, 2014

Vote with your mouse

There's an online contest-poll organized by MoveOn, and a conservative group's video is kicking @$$ in early voting. Let's help put them over the top! The video's target is Tom Steyer, "America's biggest hypocrite."

The contest's goal was:

MoveOn urged applicants to "make a 30-second ad to wake up America to the crisis of big money in our politics." In its call for submissions, MoveOn declared: "The scale of the problem is clear. The corporate wing of the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Roberts keeps insisting that money is speech and corporations are people. Shadowy, unregulated front groups are pouring unprecedented amounts of money into elections."

The contest, with all the entries are here; and most of the comments quite favorable towards those that hate Steyer most of all.

I'm even considering voting "Chicago style" with my other eMail addresses!

Hat tip to the tireless ones at PowerLine blog.


Posted by nanobrewer at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

October 8, 2014

Hail Insty?

My appreciation for the Perfesser and for autonomous vehicles is beyond reproach. Yet I found this intently amusing:

insty141008.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 5:00 PM | Comments (1)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

It probably doesn't pay union dues, either. The Teamsters will fight this one tooth and nail.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 8, 2014 6:19 PM

October 6, 2014

Et tu AEI?

Alternate headline: Randal O'Toole -- call your office!

Valclav Smil of AEI does like the choo-choo.

As a frequent flyer and a frequent rider of rapid trains, I cannot imagine why anybody would prefer the combination of North American airlines and security gauntlets to easing into a seat that reclines without causing outbursts by fellow passengers, looking out from a large window, and reading or eating while countryside flows past at 300 km/h. Cost is invariably mentioned as the greatest obstacle to high-speed trains, as if riding cars and flying were enviably cheap alternatives. If Spain and China can afford to join the 21st (well, actually the 20th century) of rapid trains is it not high time that the United States and Canada finally follow? If there is a welcome role for governments then it is in investing in infrastructure that will secure decades-long benefits (think of the economic and social payoff of the U.S. interstate system launched under Eisenhower).

Where does one start? That procrastinating line has kept this story open in my browser window all day. One starts with "no this is not 'The Nation' this is AEI's American." But I will stick generally to this paragraph.

First, every choochoophile always includes security in his or her comparison. It is a given that colo-rectal screenings are required at the airport and that trains will always be more like people my age remember air travel. I accuse the Socialists rail enthusiasts of paucity of imagination. On one side, surely security screening could be improved at the airport. I have a dozen ideas, and he could walk down the hall at AEI and collect a dozen more. On the other side -- somebody cannot blow up a train? I imagine it takes more training to hijack one and run it into a building, but they are ramping up security at NFL games; who is to say that by the time the $79Billion, 10 year rail proposal is completed (in 20 years at a cost of $204Billion), that screening won't have spread?

Second, what about those ten digit budgets and decadal time frames? What about graft and environmental impacts (but I repeat myself). Geography is coming below, but in his target of LA - San Francisco -- does he not know how much has been thrown at it already with nothing to show? Dallas-to-Houston: yeah, Texans are just jonesing for mass transit.

Third. Japan, Europe, the US, Canada... two of these thongs is not like the other ones. Denver, Kansas City, Dallas St. Louis, Indianapolis, Cincinnati are what we call "really far away." Smil wants to serve four pair of metro centers and leave the rest of the country out.

Fourth. "But, China!" Yes, they're pretty used to being told where they're going and how they will get there. The shocking omission from Smil's (it's not April Fool's Day is it?) piece in AEI is any thought of liberty, Hayekian spontaneous order, or convertibility of infrastructure.

"Do the Locomotive" is the title of the column, leaving me to my third and best headline: "Before the Locomotive Does You!"

Posted by John Kranz at 7:16 PM | Comments (8)
But johngalt thinks:

First I link approbationally to DemocracyNOW! dot com, then AEI channels the Rail-o-holics of Boulder, Colorado. "What in the wide, wide world of sports is goin' on here!"

Posted by: johngalt at October 7, 2014 3:32 AM
But jk thinks:

Dogs and cats, living together...

Posted by: jk at October 7, 2014 11:55 AM
But jk thinks:

We've a great amenity in Colorado. The "Ski-Train" goes from Union Station in Downtown Denver to Winter Park, allowing riders to avoid traffic and poor weather driving conditions. In the summer, you can ride it for fun and it is spectacular.

But it is exemplary of rail's failings. It goes to one resort leaving once a day and returns once in the evening. They do not allow you to return on a different day or ride one way. These limitations make it entertainment but not a viable transportation option, even though the available routes are badly choked.

So, while one can appreciate the aesthetics, the whole idear is rabidly anti-Hayekian: somebody decided ten or fifty years ago what points A and B are, and today they decide when they run and how they will be sold.

In Randy Barnett World, Keith, I can imagine private rail, but easements, access and environmental hurdles would preclude doing that today anywhere but Eritrea. Airports are not libertarian laboratories, but they at least support different destinations as needs change.

Segue me this: Instead of rail. let's build roads dedicated to driverless cars. This technology could boot up more quickly in an all-autonomy environment. And if it grew successful, could be expanded to include more or shared roads. If it fails, the investment could be opened to regular traffic.

It would be waaaay cheaper, a million times more flexible, and would facilitate new transportation solutions instead of chasing the 19th Century.

Posted by: jk at October 7, 2014 1:40 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Even were your proposal not be brilliant, I've have to defer to anyone who can make use of a Blazing Saddles quotation. And it didn't escape my notice that the quote is from a scene about... laying track for a railroad! Brilliant!

As much as I think I'd enjoy trying to be the Robber Baron of Eritrea, I am intrigued by your idea. Like Ross Perot said, "I'm all ears."

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 7, 2014 2:28 PM
But jk thinks:

And by a man named "Taggart..."

Posted by: jk at October 7, 2014 3:59 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Went right over my head... for a time.

Thank you IMDB!

Posted by: johngalt at October 7, 2014 5:32 PM

October 3, 2014

That's Not Funny!

Lot of love for Michael Ramirez's cartoons 'round these parts. Here's a great interview about the state of Journalism.

Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 10:16 AM | Comments (1)
But nanobrewer thinks:

A terrific interview; this was my money-quote.
"If you're a conservative; you're fighting your opponent and the referee (aka, the media) too"

I've long been a fan of Ramirez and IBD in general. THAT'S our conservative media outlet!

Posted by: nanobrewer at October 4, 2014 12:58 AM

September 11, 2014

All Hail Taranto!

It was a hit yesterday!

taranto140911.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 6:49 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

As far as I'm concerned, Carney's new job is a win for us. His primary duty is still to lie, cover, and shill for the SCOAMF, but now, instead of being paid to do the job by us taxpayers, he's now being paid by a private sector employer. I'm not paying for it anymore.

Truth be told, this Administration and the fourth estate are so in bed with each other that this isn't a career change so much as it is a lateral from the Home Office to a wholly-owned subsidiary.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at September 12, 2014 1:47 AM
But jk thinks:

Agreed. I don't think anybody is surprised -- but is that not part of the problem?

My unserious proposal to resurrect the fabled Rocky Mountain News was a reference to this. Leafing through the Denver Post or watching the local teevee news, it is rather easy to figure out where the Low Information Voter gets what little information he or she has.

To most of the world outside ThreeSources, CNN is a "reliable," "moderate," "unbiased" news source -- not like eeevil FOXNews.

There are many challenges I accept, but the media field-tilt drives me mad.

Posted by: jk at September 12, 2014 10:29 AM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"To most of the world outside ThreeSources, CNN is a "reliable," "moderate," "unbiased" news source..."

Then why is it that the only place I ever see CNN is in airport lounges and dentists' waiting rooms? Seems like no one who has a say in the matter chooses CNN. Close the airports, and CNN's ratings would make a sonic boom as they penetrated the MSNBC barrier.

"Fox=Evil!" seems to be one of those oft-repeated lies that gather the panache of truth through repetition. The Hollywood left, the paid pundits, and the tinfoil-hat brigade that spends all its allowance on bumper stickers all keep telling me that, but Fox' popularity and ratings would seem to say that Average Joe knows better.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at September 12, 2014 1:02 PM

August 28, 2014

Veritas

Seth Mandel nails it in Commentary. The IRS Scandal is about media. The Administration trusts that they will not be held accountable. And I suspect they are right.

If the latest revelations about the IRS are correct, then its officials have approached the abuse-of-power scandal with a clear strategy, pretty much from the beginning. They have been betting that, since their illegal targeting campaign against those who disagree with President Obama has had the backing of Democrats in Congress, they needed only a media strategy, not a political one.
[...]
Indeed, it would go beyond the sadly all-too-routinized forms of corruption, which are bad enough. The newest round of revelations describe a government agency (and its elected allies) not only thoroughly corrupted but also insistent on its entitlement to stand above accountability. The allegations warrant front-page headlines from the country's major newspapers, surely. So where are they?

I was 12-13 through the Watergate years, and one thing I remember is the absolute tedium. Every day's news tidbit was placed in 60pt bold type -- erosion and attrition were as important as any actual investigation. Every day was a drip of guilty, guilty, guilty.

We clearly need a return to the partisan, Francis Blair / Nicholas Butler media. We have been ill served by feigned objective outlets. I daydreamed yesterday that if I made a pile of dough on a startup, I'd resuscitate the Rocky Mountain News and hire all these great local bloggers. That would be fun and would advance the cause of liberty.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:30 AM | Comments (10)
But johngalt thinks:

You're right, I missed all of that. Let's see if my next pitch is another hanging slider:

Your implied purpose was to get all the political scandals on page 1, everyday, not just the scandals that reflect poorly on Republicans. That may help to "give light and the people will find their own way" in the Centennial State but not so much nationally. Are you suggesting the Brothers Koch fund fifty money losing newsprint cyclers?

Posted by: johngalt at August 28, 2014 6:41 PM
But jk thinks:

My implied purpose is to be as biased as the Post but in the opposite direction: a label I think I apply fairly to FOX News. They're no less biased than CNN, though I think they do many things more fairly.

This will get government scandals adequate coverage. It will also provide factual information on fracking, vaccinations, GMO crops, climate change, and the FDA's body count (which will be an info-graphic).

Don't think we need fifty. The Rocky will cover Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado where it is needed, plus Kansas, Wyoming, and Utah where it is not (we endorse Mia Love!) New York has the Daily News; California may be beyond salvage. If our model works, Charles & David* may want a few more in purply areas.

Just hit me: the grandchildren in the Beatles' "When I'm 64: Vera, Chuck, and Dave. Suppose they're the Kochs?

Posted by: jk at August 28, 2014 7:59 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Nice to see I'm not the only one dropping Beatles references in the last couple of days, though I think mine was more satisfyingly obscure.

Los Angeles is, sadly, another one-paper town that used to be a two-paper town. The Herald-Examiner was killed off in the Eighties by the labor union, leaving only the Times, which is a famously biased rag and not even of worthy to be used to train my dogs.

Should you get started with this and find yourself in need of a California correspondent, I'd gladly fire up the keyboard, with the proviso that I might be somewhat sporadic; my life being what it is, you know I recently have been limited to intermittent contributions followed by days of absence.

If I may be so bold as to suggest: consider doing an online version first and see what kind of readership you build. It would be a great sample for your Koch-worthy benefactors to use to justify their investment, and would be more cost-effective up front; you might even find that staying online-only is a preferable medium.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 28, 2014 8:23 PM
But jk thinks:

Brother Keith:

Thank you for your kind suggestions. But I wish to spend bucketfulls of money. In my original post, I suggested my own as a retirement vehicle after Google buys out livetathecoffeehouse.com or some other vehicle of mine.

Other people's money would be a great second choice.

As for a frugal, third, online choice -- I daresay it's been done.

We, therefore, regret to inform you that frugality and proven effectiveness does not meet the current needs of our pipe dream.

Yours most sincerely,
jk

Posted by: jk at August 29, 2014 1:57 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:

Hi Y'all.

1. New Newspaper: um, isn't Commentary one?
OK, it's not national, but IBD is....

2. I agree with everything being said here: the Dem's want power and the media is aiding, abetting, and apparently, mostly cheering.

3. My idea was a new TV show, Denver-based, to get away from all the NYC-euphoria in morning TV and (a lot of recent movies): it's focus, AFTER covering Brangelina, and the K-cups (aka, Kar-trashians) would be Tech Talk, "High Touch" and (and how both can be used to uphold liberty) possibly new-celebrity goings on (Google's Serge, Bezos, et al) in and around Silicon Valley.

Posted by: nanobrewer at September 2, 2014 6:05 PM
But jk thinks:

I'm going to quit -- I cannot even sell pipe dreams around here! You're each correct, but I am thinking of having Jared Polis Money and what would I do? I should not have brought the Kochs (peace and blessings on their eternal Billionaire Souls...) into it. Just a way to waste money I don't have.

Tough. Damn. Room.

I agree with nb on the TV. Why, why, why has nobody done a Roger Ailes on local news? There are four-and-a-half in Denver and they are all exactly the same. Have one with a tough, bloggy sensibility and without the press releases from lefty NGOs leading the show...

...and 55% of the city would hate you! But you'd have the top ratings out of the other 45.

I think the only hold up is that all the execs came out of J-School and would rather tilt at windmills than make money.

Posted by: jk at September 2, 2014 6:47 PM

August 26, 2014

All Hail Taranto!


Posted by John Kranz at 3:46 PM | Comments (13)
But jk thinks:

We cannot possibly have a "Like" button because Brother Keith would collect a disproportionate amount of likes.

Instead: everybody gets a trophy at ThreeSources!

Posted by: jk at August 27, 2014 1:41 PM
But johngalt thinks:

How about a "that was a gratuitous tweak" button?

Posted by: johngalt at August 27, 2014 3:51 PM
But johngalt thinks:

When BK becomes a Canadian entity, will they rename it Burger Queen?

Posted by: johngalt at August 27, 2014 3:52 PM
But jk thinks:

What are the odds on my dragging this thread toward serious?

Review Corner en route for Helen Raleigh's "Confucius Never Said." Chinese restaurants frequently have royal references: "Chef King" "Jim-bob's Szechuan Palace," &c. I'm going to make the bold leap that the reverence for authority is a manifestation of their acceptance of hierarchy. Taranto's tongue-in-cheek revulsion bespeaks our reverence for individuality and equality.

Posted by: jk at August 27, 2014 5:41 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I won't jump on your "equality" reference, but only because of the context vis-à-vis royalty. Instead, I'll try to drag it toward the original subject.

I've detected a new political divide across which we all are separated: Whether we boo or cheer every time a taxpaying entity lowers its tax liability. As a capitalist, I cheer. As democrats, Buffett's pals foam at the mouth. I also suspect the root cause is more fundamental than simply how much revenue Leviathan has to spread around for its various purposes. Didn't the President say he doesn't care if higher tax rates means lower tax revenues, since raising rates on the rich is more "fair?"

Posted by: johngalt at August 27, 2014 6:20 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Burger Queen, JG? Well, I suppose it would be fitting, in a sense, because that creepy Burger King never talks, and we all know, Her Majesty's a pretty nice girl, but she doesn't have a lot to say...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 27, 2014 11:41 PM

August 11, 2014

Our own Ellsworth Toohey

When I read "The Fountainhead," I found Ellsworth Toohey to be unbelievable. Rand is frequently criticized that her heroic characters are too heroic, but my hang-up was with Toohey; what's in it for him?

Then, Don Luskin cast Paul Krugman as Toohey in his "I Am John Galt" and all of life made sense. What's in it for Krugman? The academic power of being held in high esteem by the pointy-heads that matter to him. The pulpit of the New York Times Ed Page.

Aaaaaand, he's at it. Taranto (and Dan Mitchell) make fun of him for his blanket assertions. From 2009:

In Britain, the government itself runs the hospitals and employs the doctors. We've all heard scare stories about how that works in practice; these stories are false.

Why? Paul says. Today's blanket assertion: the welfare state -- like the NHS -- is fine! No worries! Just a bunch of libertarians off the rails.
As Mike [Konczal] says, this notion rests on the belief that the welfare state is a crazily complicated mess of inefficient programs, and that simplification would save enough money to pay for universal grants that are neither means-tested nor conditional on misfortune. But the reality is nothing like that. The great bulk of welfare-state spending comes from a handful of major programs, and these programs are fairly efficient, with low administrative costs.

Like a gifted sommelier, Krugman pairs falsehoods with straw-men. Distortionary pressures and opacity are more central to the minimum income debate than administrative costs.

He thinks Rep. Paul Ryan is "in a fantasy world" for thinking we're living in an Ayn Rand novel. But . . . he's Ellsworth Toohey!

Posted by John Kranz at 1:01 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

A work of rhetorical art: "Like a gifted sommelier, Krugman pairs falsehoods with straw-men."

Brilliant!

As for Toohey, the more important self-interest payoff to him was the ability to harm men of greater ability than himself. To cut down the "tall poppy" as it were. This is the light in which to properly view government regulations like those of the EPA.

Posted by: johngalt at August 11, 2014 3:57 PM

August 4, 2014

I Going to Cry Now

It seems Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert were underserving the smug, smarmy, fake news segment. The free market, being ruthlessly efficient, brought in John Oliver. You know he is smart because he delivers fake news in a poncy british accent,

I hate this format more than Socialism and Ebola combined and am disappointed to see a third star rising. Perhaps it is no more damaging to this great republic than bad pop music, but my Facebook feed disagrees. "John Oliver PERFECTLY Destroys <subject>" reads a typical post. Then poncy-man lectures us wee folk for a few minutes on climate change or gun violence or whatever. I was inuring to it.

But today, the Wall St Journal's CMO Today includes a clip (eleven ghastly preening minutes if you've the stomach) in which Mr. Oliver lectures us on the pernicious effects of native advertising. Nasty Corporations ruining saintly journalism.

I think it may be a special outside the paywall page, but here is the Oliver Clip just in case.

The people who are destroying Journalism, rising to protect its integrity. Pass the barf bag.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:43 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Didn't someone have to replace Piers Morgan as the "effete international paternalist snob" in American media? I call it a net win that he went from CNN to HBO.

Posted by: johngalt at August 4, 2014 3:02 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

When despair sets in... when all seems lost... when you think things have hit rock bottom...

... then just remind yourself that the arrogant halfwit commentator serving up the editorials with a British accent could have been Russell Brand.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 4, 2014 5:46 PM

July 23, 2014

Quote of the Day

"It's Virtually Impossible to Be a Successful Modern President" declares the headline of a blog post by the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza. The post has drawn a great deal of ridicule, but to our mind most of the critics fail to appreciate just how feeble an effort it is. Our aim is to correct that. -- James Taranto
Posted by John Kranz at 6:22 PM | Comments (5)
But nanobrewer thinks:

ah, I've missed Taranto, and do have time now that he's behind the WSJ firewall. Do they have an electronic-only subscription rate?

Posted by: nanobrewer at July 25, 2014 1:38 AM
But jk thinks:

Yes but. They have really goosed it up this year. There's a fan club of sorts on Facebook and many complained when he went behind Rupert's wall.

I thought "you bunch of whiners -- it's, like, $89 for the best newspaper in the known universe." Then my credit card bill came in it's more, like $240. Ow.

Yet I think I will stay with it -- if you chose not to, let me know anytime you'd like me to email a story.

Posted by: jk at July 25, 2014 10:13 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Ah yes, welcome to the "introductory rate until you stop checking your credit card statement for the auto-renewal price" sales gimmick.

Posted by: johngalt at July 27, 2014 11:43 AM
But nanobrewer thinks:

Yee-ow! I thought there was an OnLine subscription for something like $14/mo.? When I get a little freer, I'll take the free trial and report back...

I do have more time now that I'm not reading Hail-Taranto!

Posted by: nanobrewer at July 28, 2014 12:39 AM
But jk thinks:

You got it, jg. In fairness, I have subscribed for more than 15 years and the digital only was $89 - $99 per year until now. It is not quite the Comcast - HBO plan.

Posted by: jk at July 28, 2014 9:48 AM

July 18, 2014

1:40 of awesome

This is Julie Borowski, one of tomorrow night's speakers at the inaugural Colorado Liberty Conference. It's not too late to get tickets!

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:25 PM | Comments (0)

July 16, 2014

Pollution Research Reportage

In a cringe worthy article, KDVR Fox31's Shaul Turner informs readers that NCAR air pollution study is largest in Colorado.

Dr. Gabriele Pfister of the NCAR said pollution can affect more than the air.

"It also can damage plants (and) it can damage crop yields," Pfister said.

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment spokesman Garry Kaufman said the project will also track pollution from wildfires.

"We see emissions from across the ocean coming to impact Colorado's air," Kaufman said.

Experts say this is just the beginning, results will be useful for decades to come.

Your intrepid blogger, however, first read the scientific description of the study, complete with a cool graphic, on a NASA webpage.

Two NASA aircraft are participating in field campaigns beginning this month in Colorado that will probe the factors leading to unhealthy air quality conditions and improve the ability to diagnose air quality conditions from space.

The NASA aircraft will be joined by a research aircraft from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for flights July 16 to Aug. 16 from the Research Aviation Facility maintained by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado.

The main study area extends along the Northern Front Range from the Denver metropolitan area in the south to Fort Collins in the north extending eastward from the mountains as far as Greeley. This area contains a diverse mixture of air pollution sources that include transportation, power generation, oil and gas extraction, agriculture, natural vegetation and episodic wildfires.

The region being studied often experiences ozone levels in summer that exceed national health standards. Ground-level ozone is chemically produced from the combination of nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbon emissions in sunlight.

Did we mention oil and gas extraction?

I'm all for scientific research but please forgive me if I'm overly sensitive to the political application of such research results. Quite honestly, I looked into the story out of curiosity whether NASA's King Air and P-3b Orion or NSF's C-130 Hercules aircraft happen to comply with new EPA emission regulations for FAA-controlled aircraft. Since the planes are not new my guess is, not so much.

It was a bonus to discover a prime example of Word Crimes in the big-time media. Sorry Shaul but you gotta try harder wit da English.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:47 PM | Comments (0)

Quote of the Day

Michael Walsh responds to Rolling Stone's amazingly stupid even for them Five Most Dangerous Guns."

The Five Most Dangerous Dogs:
· Big dogs
· Little dogs
· Medium Sized Dogs
· Male Dogs
· Female Dogs
Posted by John Kranz at 12:30 PM | Comments (0)

July 14, 2014

My Life with the Bracaderos..

I was born in the tough border town of Denver. It really shaped my life from an early age. I remember when they'd try to swim across Hampden Avenue...

taranto140714.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 4:27 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Of course Colorado is on the border, just look at a map. The state is directly north of New Mexico. Rube.

Posted by: johngalt at July 14, 2014 5:54 PM

June 29, 2014

Bill and Hillary Clinton - White, Southern, RACISTS!

Anyone who criticizes President Obama, we are told by those who refuse to criticize President Obama, does so because he is black. By disagreeing with "a smidgeon" of the first black president's agenda, performance or statements one exposes oneself, supposedly, as a "racist." Today I read that, according to the new Ed Klein book 'Blood Feud' that category of despicable human being, as early as last May, included the Clintons.

Clinton ranted, "The thing with Obama is that he canít be bothered, and there is no hand on the tiller half the time. That's the story of the Obama presidency. No hand on the fĖking tiller," according to the book, which was excerpted exclusively in Sunday's Post.

"Obama has turned into a joke," she went on, according to Klein.

"The IRS targeting the Tea Party, the Justice Department's seizure of AP phone records and [Fox reporter] James Rosen's e-mails -- all these scandals. Obamaís allowed his hatred for his enemies to screw him the way Nixon did," she raged, the book says, adding that she called the president "incompetent and feckless."

Bill was also quoted:

"I hate that man Obama more than any man I've ever met, more than any man who ever lived," Bill told pals, according to the book.

Whoa, not just a racist but a hater. But like, you know, it's not rally true, it's just like some stuff that some guy wrote to sell his stupid book.

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:06 AM | Comments (0)

June 27, 2014

Quote of the Day II

So let me ask: Which of the following statements comes closest to your view?
The idiots at The New Republic are too stupid to read and understand the results of the Pew study.

The hacks at The New Republic deliberately twist whatever they can to make conservatives look bad.

-- Ann Althouse

Posted by John Kranz at 1:20 PM | Comments (1)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Is this an either/or thing?

Posted by: Keith Arnold at June 27, 2014 3:12 PM

June 26, 2014

Quote of the Day

All Hail Stossel:

[Reporters] are much less fond of complex stories in which problems are solved subtly by the dynamism of the free market. The invisible hand, after all, is invisible. It works its magic in a million places and makes adjustments every minute. That's hard for reporters to see--especially when they're not looking for it.

Often, when it comes to news that happens slowly, the media get it utterly wrong. I suspect we get it wrong now about things like global warming, genetically modified foods, almost any story related to science or statistics, or, heck, basic math. Math threatens many reporters.


Posted by John Kranz at 1:34 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Or the futility of the reform efforts of the liberty movement, aka "the tea party." "It works its magic in a million places and makes adjustments every minute" too. That's hard for reporters to see - especially when they refuse to look for it.

Posted by: johngalt at June 26, 2014 3:39 PM

June 17, 2014

Told You So?

Remember when Susan Rice said "we will catch the Benghazi attackers!" And Darrel Issa said "No, you will not catch the Benghazi attackers!" And Ms. Rice said "Will too!!" And Rep. Issa said "So's your old man!" And...

No. I don't remember it much like that, either. But Scott Wilson at the WaPo does.

The weekend capture of Ahmed Abu Khattala, one of the suspected ringleaders of the Sept. 11, 2012, assault on a U.S. diplomatic compound and CIA-run annex, gives Obama another told-you-so moment in Washington's score-keeping culture.

But the achievement is also likely to do little to tamp down the partisan fervor surrounding the administration's public management of the deadly Benghazi attacks, a still-raw political legacy of the 2012 presidential campaign that continues to preoccupy Republicans and their most ardent supporters on the right.


Let me get this straight. The Administration:
  • Bombs a country and ousts its leader with no plans to stabilize or recover;
  • Staffs a consulate with sub-par security;
  • Denies requests for additional security;
  • Sends no help during an eight hour attack;
  • Lies about the cause of the attack;
  • Lies -- aided by the outrageously unscrupulous antics of Candy Crawly -- about its characterization of the attack during a debate;
  • Throws a filmmaker in jail showing to the world our appreciation for free speech;
  • disavows filmmaker's rights;
  • Refers to the above as "a phony scandal."

And now, the WaPo thinks this is all magically expunged because an arrest was made? Told-you-so?

Posted by John Kranz at 4:59 PM | Comments (5)
But johngalt thinks:

I haven't yet heard... What role did Abu Khattala allegedly play in "Innocence of Muslims" - Dolly or Key Grip?

Posted by: johngalt at June 17, 2014 6:05 PM
But AndyN thinks:

Would anyone care to explain to me how a "spontaneous" event can have a ringleader?

Posted by: AndyN at June 18, 2014 10:55 AM
But jk thinks:

Perhaps Abu Khattala (or "Chip" as he's known in the industry) is Libya's Roger Ebert. "The Composition!" "The Lighting!" "The Insipid Dialogue!" "Somebody's gonna die!"

Posted by: jk at June 18, 2014 10:59 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Tying together this Benghazi misdirection aka "ringleader's arrest" with last Friday's #UnderPlayedStory, how is it that the NYT is able to report... "that Khattala 'told other Libyans in private conversations during the night of the attack that he was moved to attack the diplomatic mission to take revenge for an insult to Islam in an American-made online video" yet they can't find any clues in the disappearance of two years worth of email records that arguably could end the Obama Administration early? Do private Libyan conversations have better data retention policies and technologies?

Posted by: johngalt at June 18, 2014 2:56 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Excellent point AndyN. When they needed a scapegoat scalp [intentionally gratuitous "redskin" reference] the Obama Administration arrested ONE filmmaker. After his faux culpability was played out they arrested ONE - I don't know what... outspoken Libyan who was interviewed by western media?

And in the Salon piece I linked in the previous comment they have him tried, convicted and sentenced already, including the implication that there are no co-conspirators to keep pursuing. "Silly Republicans, Obama kicked your ass! Take that, bitches."

Posted by: johngalt at June 18, 2014 10:10 PM

May 20, 2014

Wait! Don't Answer That! It was a rhetorical question...

National Journal's Ron Fournier blasts the Obama administration handling of the communications surrounding the VA scandal. He deems it a "20th century" strategy of lying over and over again and assuming people couldn't check the references for themselves. Just how dumb, Fournier asks, does the White House think we all are? -- HotAir.com
Posted by John Kranz at 4:33 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Why, as dumb as the New York Times tells us to be, that's how!

Posted by: johngalt at May 20, 2014 5:03 PM

May 16, 2014

Phishing trip

Dude. I'm a ThreeSourcer -- try your Phishing attack on somebody else.

DamagingPost.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 6:44 PM | Comments (0)

May 14, 2014

All Hail Taranto!

taranto140514gif.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 7:04 PM | Comments (0)

April 16, 2014

All Hail Taranto!

With a Centennial State twist!

taranto140416.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 5:14 PM | Comments (0)

February 19, 2014

All Hail Insty!

insty140219.gif

Heh.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:48 PM | Comments (0)

February 14, 2014

And When They Came For the Journalists...

Those of you who think the press has a leftist bias will be as surprised as I was to read that, under the President Barack H. Obama Adminstration, the Federal Communications Commission is moving forward with plans to install a "wet nurse" in "radio, television, and even newspaper newsrooms" purportedly to find out if minority viewpoints are suppressed.

Pai warned that under the rationale of increasing minority representation in newsrooms, the FCC, which has the power to issue or not issue broadcasting licenses, would dispatch its "researchers" to newsrooms across America to seek their "voluntary" compliance about how news stories are decided, as well as "wade into office politics" looking for angry reporters whose story ideas were rejected as evidence of a shutout of minority views.

The surprising part of this story is not the government's, but the press industry's action. Or ... inaction.

It's an idea so fraught with potential for abuse it ought to have news agencies screaming bloody murder. The very idea of Obama hipsters showing up in newsrooms, asking questions and judging if newspapers (over which they have no jurisdiction), radio and TV are sufficiently diverse is nothing short of thought control.

But the reaction from the National Association of Broadcasters was mealy-mouthed. The FCC "should reconsider" "qualitative" sections of its study, it wrote.

The FCC now says it will be "closely reviewing the proposed research design to determine if an alternative approach is merited," as a result of Pai's warning. Adweek actually reported that as a "retreat."

Perhaps the powers that be in the news industry don't yet realize that by "minority views" the Administration intends to empower those who might defend personal liberty and voluntary trade in a free market?

HAHAHA!

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

UPDATE: Added the link to the wet nurse clip, as I had originally intended.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:42 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

I'm picturing the guy who gets parked at the Rearden plant by the State Science Institute.

In tandem with the smidgeon of an IRS scandal, this kind of stuff scares me.

Posted by: jk at February 14, 2014 5:06 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Me too. All of that racous laughter was of the nervous variety. You know, like "Hey look, our ship is sinking. Isn't that hilarious!!"

Posted by: johngalt at February 14, 2014 5:23 PM

All Hail Insty!

Professor Reynolds, bringin' it as per usual...

insty140214.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 10:01 AM | Comments (0)

January 24, 2014

This is not news, how?

Larry Kudlow mentioned this last night and I had not heard about. I expected to read a lot about it today. Here's Tom Howell, Jr. in the Washington Times, excerpted on foxnews.com:

Moody's Investor Service has changed its outlook for the U.S. health care insurance sector from stable to negative, citing Obamacare's rollout and the uncertainty it brings.

The private credit rating agency said potential fallout from the Affordable Care Act's implementation -- including changes to the individual market and the impact of the law's "employer mandate" on commercial group plans in January 2015 -- presents the greatest challenge to health insurersí credit profile. Lower reimbursement rates among Medicare Advantage plans also are creating financial pressure, it said.

"While all of these issues had been on our radar screen as we approached 2014, a new development and a key factor for the change in outlook is the unstable and evolving regulatory environment under which the sector is operating," Moody's said. "Notably, new regulations and presidential announcements over the last several months with respect to the ACA have imposed operational changes well after product and pricing decisions had been finalized."


A trusted, non-partisan, not political third party has pointed out that the PPACAo2010 will destroy the private health care sector. I still did not see anything, so I thought I'd search. Bing's autocomplete for "Moody's downgrades ..." has a long list. But "health care sector" does not show even when you provide a few letters.

So, I'm the only guy looking for it. Okay, Bing®, whatchya got?

moody_downgrade.gif

All "Conservative" news outlets. It is well known that I am not a big FOX News fan. But this is an actual fact. This is timely, germane and important. And nooooooooooooooobody but FOX, WaTimes, CNS (oh, and Kudlow!) cares at all.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:52 AM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Even if they did care, do you think they want their phone tapped (and likely worse) like James Rosen's was?

News editors are learning that lying, by omission or otherwise, to get a politician elected always requires you to continue the lie, lest your own fecklessness be exposed.

Posted by: johngalt at January 27, 2014 12:32 PM
But jk thinks:

Pretty dour even for ThreeSources.

I'd love to be incredibly argumentative but I am increasingly concerned with the Bananarepublicization of our politics. Watergate was enough of a big deal that it is forever enshrined in suffix history and Woodstein and Bernward are lionized well beyond their actual contributions.

Yet, more egregious things are clearly going down. Rep. Darrel Issa is holding hearings. Crickets. (Are Issa's hearings political? Yup. Were Sam Ervin and Frank Church saints? I. Think. Not.)

I think the bulk of media folk are just generally on-board and not cowed. I don't present that as a defense.

Posted by: jk at January 27, 2014 2:09 PM
But johngalt thinks:

This is the revelation I had in mind when I made the "keep lying or expose your fecklessness" comment about news editors. It doesn't support the "we're afraid of the administration" claim, but that was pure speculation bordering on sarcasm. It also doesn't admit "we lied to get Obama elected" but that is common knowledge, is it not?

Thank you for keeping me precise.

UPDATE: Added missing hyperlink

Posted by: johngalt at January 27, 2014 3:59 PM

Now She Tells Us

Our Miss Margaret. Thanks to "What I Saw at the Revolution," her stirring post-9/11 columns, and her deft touch with language I'll forever retain a soft spot for Peggy Noonan.

And yet. Because she fell for a slick snake-oil salesman of a politician, I'll never completely trust her.

Her Lithium dose is good today, or the Moon is rising in Mercury. I don't know what it takes, but the keenly insightful Noonan has a great piece on the expected banality of impending SOTU speech:

No one's really listening to the president now. He has been for five years a nonstop wind-up talk machine. Most of it has been facile, bland, the same rounded words and rounded sentiments, the same soft accusations and excuses. I see him enjoying the sound of his voice as the network newsman leans forward eagerly, intently, nodding at the pearls, enacting interest, for this is the president and he is the anchorman and surely something important is being said with two such important men engaged.

But nothing interesting was being said! Looking back on this presidency, it has from the beginning been a 17,000 word New Yorker piece in which, calmly, sonorously, with his lovely intelligent voice, the president says nothing, or little that is helpful, insightful or believable. "I'm not a particularly ideological person." "It's hard to anticipate events over the next three years." "I don't really even need George Kennan right now." "I am comfortable with complexity." "Our capacity to do some good . . . is unsurpassed, even if nobody is paying attention."

Nobody is!


She ends with some factual line-blurring that all the recent SOTUs have not really lived up to Daniel Webster. But this particular President was always all bluster and autobiography. Ms. Noonan, with all due respect, he didn't have anything to say in 2008 -- when you fell for his "facile, bland, same rounded words and rounded sentiments." Ten points for those of us who noticed back then.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:21 AM | Comments (0)

January 21, 2014

A Lawyer Would Not Make This Mistake

#epickrugmanfail

Posted by John Kranz at 1:47 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

"Of those of you who are not ThreeSourcers who voted for Barack Obama, how many of you think that you have a terrible President?"

Posted by: johngalt at January 21, 2014 6:33 PM
But jk thinks:

"Bad. Bad move on my part..."

Posted by: jk at January 21, 2014 7:20 PM

January 4, 2014

Detroit Crime Decline

Detroit has a new police chief. James Craig, according to the AP, is "a former chief of police in Cincinnati and Portland, Maine, has made sweeping changes to the way crime is tackled in Detroit." To wit:

- Stop closing some neighborhood police stations at night.
- Use crime stats to identify trouble spots.
- Move detectives back into precincts.
- Clean house in the command structure.

Good ideas all, and no surprise that crime might decline after such measures. But there's more. The news piece seemed complete when I read this tacked on the end:

"A recently rolled out tactical response unit confiscated about 17 guns in its first two days of operation."

(...)

"We know definitively - when you look at the level of violence in Detroit - when we stop someone who has illegal possession of a gun we've probably stopped a robbery," Craig said. "We've probably stopped a shooting, and more likely a homicide."

Ho hum, another big city police chief blaming guns for crime. Well, not exactly. According to The Detroit News, he also said this:

"Coming from California (Craig was on the Los Angeles police force for 28 years), where it takes an act of Congress to get a concealed weapon permit, I got to Maine, where they give out lots of CCWs (carrying concealed weapon permits), and I had a stack of CCW permits I was denying; that was my orientation."

"I changed my orientation real quick. Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed."

Craig's statements Thursday echoed those he made Dec. 19 on "The Paul W. Smith Show" on WJR (760 AM), when he said: "There's a number of CPL (concealed pistol license) holders running around the city of Detroit. I think it acts as a deterrent. Good Americans with CPLs translates into crime reduction. I learned that real quick in the state of Maine."

Shazam! Maybe things really can get bad enough that authorities are forced to do things that really work, instead of things that merely sound like they might. Same article:

"It's a huge, radical departure for the police chief to say good people should have access to firearms," said [Detroit gun safety instructor Rick] Ector. "I'm not ready to say he's pro-gun just yet, but it's vastly different from what police chiefs have said in the past."

Yes, absolutely. Unfortunately, the way AP reported his Thursday press conference is not at all different from how they have done so in the past.

H/T: My sis via, Fox News.

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:36 AM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Chief Craig was on "The Independents" on FOX Business last night (a VERY GOOD show, by the way!) and he is the real deal.

Posted by: jk at January 7, 2014 12:23 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Glad to hear it. Maybe he has a future in politics! My brother-in-law knew him as a lieutenant at LAPD. He said he liked him at the time. Probably likes him even better now that his views have "evolved very quickly."

Posted by: johngalt at January 7, 2014 3:58 PM

January 2, 2014

You Won't Believe the 9 Crazy Ways George Will thinks he's jk!

Nah, I'm just going for provocative, Upworthyesque headlines.

But Mister Will pens a superb review of Ilya Somin's book which was featured in our humble Review Corner last November.

It was naughty of Winston Churchill to say, if he really did, that "the best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter." Nevertheless, many voters' paucity of information about politics and government, although arguably rational, raises awkward questions about concepts central to democratic theory, including consent, representation, public opinion, electoral mandates and officials' accountability.

In "Democracy and Political Ignorance: Why Smaller Government is Smarter" (Stanford University Press), Ilya Somin of George Mason University law school argues that an individual's ignorance of public affairs is rational because the likelihood of his or her vote being decisive in an election is vanishingly small. The small incentives to become informed include reducing one's susceptibility to deceptions, misinformation and propaganda. And if remaining ignorant is rational individual behavior, it has likely destructive collective outcomes.


This Will kid shows promise!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:02 PM | Comments (0)

December 31, 2013

I seem long...

I pre-ordered Glenn Reynolds's new book in Hardcover, because it was available sooner than Kindle.

MY NEW BOOK, The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself, is now available for pre-order on Kindle.

The hardcover version is already shipping, though the official publication date is January 7.


Not sure what happened but I received two copies today -- holler if you want one! Free to good home.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:35 PM | Comments (0)

December 29, 2013

Duranty Lives!

Famine in the Ukraine? Nyet!

Terrorism and prevarication in Bengazi? The NYTimes has concluded its extensive 15-month investigation and -- great news -- Sec State Clinton is blameless!

Still no word on gambling at Rick's... (It's homage, Keith, not plagiarism.)

Posted by John Kranz at 12:47 PM | Comments (0)

December 28, 2013

The World IS ThreeSources, Vol. CLIX

Charles Hoskinson at WaXaminer channels blog brother jg as he details the winners and losers of l'Affaire Dynastie Canard:

And while we're on that subject, the other big loser is GLAAD, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Discrimination, which showed how far it had strayed off the path of encouraging tolerance into the dark woods where conformity is enforced by witch hunts and demands for blood sacrifices. GLAAD's intolerance sparked what its leaders called the worst backlash they'd ever seen -- a backlash that included prominent members of the gay community such as Andrew Sullivan and Camille Paglia.

That's right: Two groups of smug, urban sophisticates got outsmarted by a backwoodsman who shoots ducks for a living.

Heckuva job, folks.


You saw it here!

UPDATE: Or, a little less delicately . . . RS McCain exclaims "Oh the GLAAD Butt Hurt!"


Posted by John Kranz at 12:07 PM | Comments (0)

December 22, 2013

What a Long, Strange Trip It's Been...

Reliving -- and relitigating -- the PPACAo2010 could be tedious and disappointing. Spoiler Alert: it passes and Chief Justice Roberts applies "a saving construction" to uphold its constitutionality under the taxing power.

Despite the disappointing ending (you might wait for the Disney movie to rewrite it), the intellectual voyage of the constitutional challenges, seen through the keen minds of Volkh Conspiracy (VC) bloggers is a fascinating read. The conspirators have assembled it into a very good book: A Conspiracy Against Obamacare: The Volokh Conspiracy and the Health Care Case by Randy Barnett, Jonathan Adler, Jonathan H.; David Bernstein, Orin Kerr, David Kopel, and Ilya Somin.

It is targeted at a "guy like me." I am very interested in Constitutional law, theory, and philosophy but have no special training or deep knowledge. I suspect most ThreeSourcers, be they guys or not, fall into or near that camp. The book is detailed and substantive, you don't feel you're getting a watered down version. But any bright and interested person can get it (for a couple of weekend afternoons, I could click the Kindle on and pretend to be much smarter than I really am).

In addition to theory, you also come away with some inside information about how these challenges progress, a rough feel for timelines, and insiders' perspectives on what is important and what is not. This goes beyond the civics-book explanation of judicial review as Robert Caro's Master of the Senate goes beyond the stock description of Article I.

Supreme Court advocates know what academics sometimes seem to forget: you simply cannot "mandate" a justice go where he or she does not want to go with a clever argument. All you can do is present your strongest case in the most compelling way. Mike, Greg, and Paul did that during oral argument in which the pressure could not have been more intense. I was supremely grateful it was them and not me who had to bear up under the strain of oral argument. Along with Karen Harned, director of the NFIB Small Business Legal Center, win or lose, I believe we fielded the "A Team" on behalf of the majority of the American people who objected to the Affordable Care Act and believed it to be unconstitutional.

Perhaps the best part of the book -- from a blog lover's perspective -- is VC's contributions to the debate. As bloggers once busted Dan Rather and reached above the monopoly of three-network journalism, bloggers [asterisk] reached above the Ivy League Professoriate, all of whom thought that only right wing goofballs would see any Constitutional problems with Obamacare.
Twenty years ago, the virtual consensus among law professors at elite schools very well may have been the end of serious debate in the academic world. The venues for law professors getting their ideas out on controversial issues of the day were few and dominated by law professors at the top schools: the mainstream media, either through op-eds or interviews with reporters, both heavily skewed toward famous professors at places like Harvard and Yale; publications at the top law reviews, which are not reviewed blindly and therefore heavily favor the already renowned; and presentations at elite law schools, to which the overwhelming majority of invitees are professors at peer institutions.

[Asterisk] These folks are not bloggers in the "pajamas" sense. These are law professors who have argued before the Supreme Court (Barnett was the attorney for Angel Raich) and file amicus briefs for big league think tanks. But there is a telling section in David Bernstien's summation.
In 2011, a law professor at Yale, defending Obamacare from constitutional challenge, claimed that only one "constitutional scholar that I know at a top 20 law school" thinks that Obamacare is "constitutionally problematic." A year later, just before oral argument in NFIB, the same professor stated that only one law professor at a top ten law school agreed that the Obamacare was unconstitutional.

The professor's math was almost certainly somewhat off, but he was right that the overwhelming majority of constitutional law scholars at elite law schools thought that the constitutional challenge to Obamacare was not just wrong, but obviously so. But there is a reason for this. The faculties at elite law schools have been able to define what was "mainstream" in constitutional law simply by who they hired to join them. And Yale, to take just one example, has not hired a conservative or libertarian professor to teach constitutional law in my lifetime.


So these poor professors, laboring away at top 14-17 law schools, yet believing in Constitutional limits to government power, were able to present, refine, share, and disseminate their ideas at blog speed. And many of these ideas start showing up in SCOTUS oral arguments and opinions.
Perhaps one contribution of our brief, and the case, to constitutional law is renewed attention to the full opinion in McCulloch v. Maryland rather than the expurgated versions in many law school textbooks. In Randy Barnett's Constitutional Law text, students can see John Marshall working his way through doctrine of principals and incidents, as he elucidates that Necessary and Proper Clause is for inferior, less "worthy" powers-- and not for a "great, substantive and independent power." Roberts's application of this long-standing rule took some of the pro-mandate professoriate by surprise, and the professors who were not surprised were dismayed.

The power of ideas and the power of new media take the challenge from then-Speaker Pelosi's "are you serious?" through a sweeping midterm election, to a nail-biting decision that, while it didn't give ThreeSourcers everything they wanted . . .
While our failure to prevent the egregious Affordable Care Act from taking effect remains a bitter pill, this should not be allowed to detract from what we accomplished legally. We prevailed in preserving and even strengthening the enumerated powers scheme of Article I, Section 8 as a protection of individual liberty. From a constitutional perspective, this is what we were fighting so hard to achieve.

But, but, but taxing power!
For those who may still not see the difference between the legal theories we defeated and that which was adopted by Chief Justice John Roberts, imagine that all the federal drug laws were enforced by the nonpunitive tax he allowed rather than as Commerce Clause regulations, which is how the prohibitions of the Controlled Substances Act are now justified. Under Chief Justice Roberts's tax power theory, the government would have to open the jails and release tens of thousands of prisoners. And any of you reading this could legally smoke marijuana under federal law, provided you were willing to pay a small noncoercive federal tax on this activity. Such is the difference between the Commerce Clause power Congress claimed justified the Affordable Care Act, and the new limited tax power the chief justice allowed it to exercise. That is a big difference.

Losing 5-4 on the mandate -- even with the de-fanging -- has also caused us to lose sight of the 7-2 win against coerced Medicaid expansion. These and the fear, uncertainty and doubt placed in thinking citizens' minds make this exercise heroic and successful.

The Colorado Avalanche lost a hockey game in LA yesterday. The Kings were up 2-0 late in the second period. The Kings are a great team; they are tough at home; they are a defensive powerhouse who rarely give up two goals in a game. They were the Harvard professors of hockey yesterday afternoon. The Avs came back, tied (gives them one point in the standings) and took the game through overtime to a shootout. Sadly for me they lost, but the announcers at the end all agreed this was a win. I agree.

Five stars. Duh.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:17 AM | Comments (0)

December 18, 2013

Snags?

Okay. If this is the Wall Street Journal's idea of a "snag..."

pilot_snags.gif

I guess Healthcare.gov is plagued by "glitches."

Posted by John Kranz at 2:03 PM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2013

Colorado School Shooting Silent Treatment

You, as have I, may be wondering why you haven't seen more news and opinion about the Colorado school shooting at Arapahoe High School last week. Maybe it's because only the shooter was killed? Unlikely. More likely it's because, as John Hayward at Human Events blog writes, "There is absolutely nothing in the Arapahoe High School shooting for gun control zealots to work with."

On the contrary, the incident demolishes some of their cherished beliefs, most obviously their talismanic faith in the power of regulations to suppress this type of violence. Given his political activism, it seems likely that Karl Pierson was well aware of the local gun laws, but those laws did not dissuade him from going on a rampage. According to CNN, what ended his rampage in just 80 seconds, preventing him from dealing far more injury and death, was one of the measures strongly endorsed by the National Rifle Association: an armed adult on school grounds.

Many more interesting tidbits in the linked article, like the killer's political beliefs, desire to attend the Air Force Academy, opinions about Republicans, etc.

Posted by JohnGalt at 4:38 PM | Comments (0)

October 29, 2013

ACA ad Hominem

This post is filed under television, et. al, because I'm going to rip on a television column in the L.A. Times, which in turn rips on former television star Suzanne Somers because she Calls Obamacare 'Ponzi Scheme' in Error Ridden Article.

The column never rebuts the characterization. Instead it attacks her accuracy on tangential issues, but not until highlighting her sex life, alternative health practices and past infomercial gigs.

"An earlier version of this post contained a quotation attributed to Lenin ('Socialized medicine is the keystone to the arch of the socialist state') that has been widely disputed," the Journal wrote in an addendum to the original piece. "And it included a quotation attributed to Churchill ('Control your citizensí health care and you control your citizens') that the Journal has been unable to confirm."

That wasn't all. Somers pointed to a Canadian magazine article that criticized that country's nationalized health care system by arguing that animals could get better care than human beings. But in her original post, Somers mistakenly recalled which animal was pictured on the cover: It was a dog, not a horse.

Gasp! Well then, that's that I guess - Obamacare is clearly not a Socialist Ponzi scheme. Here's what she said, according to the (L.A.) Times:

"Boomers are smart," Somers wrote in a Monday opinion piece for the online version of the Wall Street Journal. "They see the train wreck comingÖ most I speak with think the Affordable Care Act is a greater Ponzi scheme than that pulled off by Bernie Madoff."

"And don't forget, dear reader, that the Wall Street Journal is owned by the same multimegabillionaire who owns FOX NEWS!!!" But what Somers wrote is that others whom she speaks with have called it that.

And then there was the Nuclear Option for discrediting a Hollywood Starlet, at any stage of her career - the mug shot. Try to figure out which of these headed the WSJ article and which one ran in the Times.

OB-YV315_expert_C_20130909095823.jpg

la-et-st-suzanne-somers-calls-obamacare-ponzi--001.jpg

What? Oh, of course I read about her sex life. But the sex was, yawn, with her husband.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:24 PM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2013

Stop the Presses, Markets Work!

Well, that's how I would read this Yahoo News piece. But Liz Goodwin sees things differently.

It seems that Jean Laurie of Long-GUY-Land faces something of a conundrum. She got her $30,000 check from FEMA (finally!) to fix her house's Sandy-induced repairs. But, suddenly, Fed subsidized flood insurance now comes with . . . conditions.

But that rebuilding comes with a catch. New flood maps drawn up by FEMA, along with reforms to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) enacted in 2012, meant that many residents, including the Lauries, must lift up their homes or face dramatically higher flood insurance rates.

Can I get an "Ehrmigawd!!?" The deal where Colorado desert dwellers continually pay to rebuild seaside housing that would never be built by rational people will now require at least architectural consideration.

As the article describes reason, insurance, and risk, it is of course written as a pity party.

Joanna Tierno, a Staten Island resident facing a 4,000 percent rate hike under the new rules, says she's considering borrowing money to pay off her mortgage and then going uninsured, because it would cost so much less. "We're up against not just recovering from a disaster, but being hit by superhigh rates that's basically ... taking people's homes from them,"

Finally, I agree. You want to rebuild please, please, oh pretty please do it without insurance that I have to subsidize. John Stossel does a great riff on this: he's rebuilt his home once (maybe twice) on our dime but at least has the decency to go on TV and tell us how stoopid it is that people who make much less than he does allow repetitive foolishness ignoring the oldest known real estate advice. And Ms. Laurie?
"We were not going to try to come back unless we could come back how we wanted to," Jean Laurie told Yahoo News on a sunny day in October. She stood on the empty lot where her home used to be, nostalgically pointing out the spots where she had built a Japanese garden and installed a heated pool before the storm swept it all way.

"It was gorgeous," she said.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:28 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

I remember, one time, I built this totally awesome sand castle...

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2013 4:38 PM
But jk thinks:

Two words: FEMA claim.

Posted by: jk at October 22, 2013 4:53 PM

October 16, 2013

Tweet of the Day

Posted by John Kranz at 3:16 PM | Comments (4)
But johngalt thinks:

Some even better ones at https://twitter.com/Roxiemcmay. While a lesser man would say this illiterate Twit is a perfect example of how SSDI can waste $780 per month, I'm here to say it's a reasonable fee for such a humorous public reminder of how easy it is to live large in this here land o' plenty.

Posted by: johngalt at October 16, 2013 3:51 PM
But jk thinks:

The good news is that I found the missing apostrophe:

Retired, disabled because of the Government, Democrat, was a gifted artist, hate arrogance, racism, Tea Party bullshit, out spoken know it all's.
Posted by: jk at October 16, 2013 4:33 PM
But johngalt thinks:

LOL. It had to be somewhere and there it is. Meanwhile a contracted word pair in another tweet somewhere in his timeline is missing its space.

Can we also please do something about whoever the evil Republican is who goes around stealing the "gift" from artists?

Posted by: johngalt at October 16, 2013 5:01 PM
But jk thinks:

"Out spoken?" I figured he was gay...

Posted by: jk at October 16, 2013 5:10 PM

October 15, 2013

It's not the Heat! It's the Tautology!

Most Americans are centrists, study finds.

And all their children are above average...

Posted by John Kranz at 6:57 PM | Comments (0)

October 1, 2013

Don't Leave the House!

CHAOS! HuffPo wouldn't lie!

huffpo_chaos.gif

Click through and it is even better!

huffpo_actwon.gif

UPDATE: The WaPo is a little more measured:

wapo_shutdown.gif


Posted by John Kranz at 12:51 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

There's a reason I call them Huffingpaint. And you've just found it.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 1, 2013 4:10 PM
But jk thinks:

Chaos, man, Chaos!! I ventured out just now, and it appears that the pandemonium has not hit Weld County Colorado yet. Starbucks was open and the stoplights were working. I'll keep reporting for as long as I have power and Internet...

Posted by: jk at October 1, 2013 4:42 PM
But johngalt thinks:

If you don't believe the shutdown has enormous consequences for all mankind then you just aren't paying attention. Just ask Senator John McCain (OSSIFICAT-AZ) who said, "The apocalypse is upon us." Why? Because the Air Force-Navy game might be canceled this weekend. AAAAAAHH! The humanity!

Posted by: johngalt at October 1, 2013 7:26 PM

September 21, 2013

I Did Not Know That!

When media bias even gets through to me, the Democratic Operatives journalists in the MSM are keepin' rockin'! The IBD Ed Page shares something I didn't know:

Bias: Heard the one about how House Republicans have passed 40-plus bills to repeal or defund ObamaCare, all of which went nowhere? It's not true. Yet the mainstream press continues to peddle this blatant falsehood.

I keep hearing how they cannot do this anymore, now that we have FOX News and blogs. Yet, there is still an "official," "real" record that comes from the NYTimes and echoes through Jon Stewart.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:27 AM | Comments (3)
But T. Greer thinks:

The problem with the 'fox news' strategy of balancing the news is that it really doesn't do anything of the sort - it just divides the media and their viewership into two channels of communication. The right leaning side then gets marginalized out of the main conversation. If only conservatives are watching Fox News, then the best they can do is preach to the choir. Which is useless.

In order to contest mainstream narratives you must have conservative voices in the (non-Fox) mainstream media. Indeed. If Fox News offers conservative voices the best bang for their buck (be it actual bucks or simply in prominence) and gets them all to switch to Fox (ala Glenn Beck) then they actually hurt conservatives ability to push back.

Posted by: T. Greer at September 22, 2013 1:17 AM
But jk thinks:

I agree but . . . there are no classic liberal voices in the MSM (I dislike the term, but have not found another).

The major networks, big dailies, and incestuous J-Schools have been able to keep activism elevated over rational self interest at least since Watergate. One of the few things that make me doubt capitalism is watching countless media organizations fail rather than try the FOX formula.

There are four TV news organizations in Denver on five stations (NBC, ABC, CBS, with the FOX and WB Affiliates teamed together). It is hyper-competitive and a key part of station revenues. It staggers me that nobody ever says let's try to appeal to the 50% that are being completely ignored. Exact cookie-cutter shows are on each evening: only the hair changes.

If you read John Stossel's books or Bernard Goldberg's "Bias" and "Arrogance," you see how deep this goes. Brian Williams would not return Stossel's greetings in the hallway. Goldberg has developed into a something of a FOX-News crank, but the first two books are serious and compelling. Goldberg was excommunicated for questioning a hit piece on Steve Forbes's flat tax. Thou shalt not suggest that "other" ideas be taken seriously.

So, yeah, I think we say the same thing. But it ain't gonna happen. It is disturbing that half get their news from FOX and half from Jon Stewart and neither believe a word the other says. Before FOX (and Instapundit) the ABC-NBC-CBS-NYTimes axis could completely squash a story. I do not want to revert to that. A bifurcated media beats a monopoly.

But I am all ears for any way to blend them.

Posted by: jk at September 23, 2013 10:58 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Despite what information we are spoon-fed, and by whom, there remains an insatiable thirst for news, information and connectedness. I expect social media to play an ever growing part in the de-spinning of information.

Here's something I never thought I'd ever read, until it happened this morning: "Kenyan Police Tweeted ..." Twitter can make the truth of a shot heard round the world travel as fast as the lies.

Posted by: johngalt at September 23, 2013 2:48 PM

September 17, 2013

NOT The Onion

Poor President Obama. He wants to strengthen the middle class, restore the economy that Bush ruined, promote green energy, and see that we all drink enough water.

But: "A term filled with unpredictable calamities"

As reports of the deadly shooting broke, Obama was forced to rewrite prepared remarks on the economy.

Gosh darn it, has any President ever faced such adversity?

Please click. It exceeds parody and -- by far -- my sarcasmic gifts. David Nakamura is serious.

UPDATE: All Hail Taranto!

taranto130917.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 2:17 PM | Comments (1)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"Why do bad things always happen to him?"

I'll take "Unintended Consequences" for $400, Alex...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at September 17, 2013 5:09 PM

August 30, 2013

Hollywood Muffs History

It's not just "Inherit the Wind..."

As historians of the 40th president, having written more than a dozen biographies between us, we are troubled by [The Butler]'s portrayal of Reagan's attitudes toward race. We are especially concerned because many Americans readily accept Hollywood depictions of history as factual.

Steven F. Hayward, Paul Kengor, Craig Shirley and Kiron K. Skinner pen a defense of "Dutch" in the WaPo.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:04 AM | Comments (0)

August 27, 2013

The Conversion is complete

Gotta-Sting Headline from the AP:

obama_bush_playbook.gif

Updated now to "On Syria, is Obama treading in Bush's Iraq footsteps?" Jim Geraghty said "it's like the teams switched uniforms at halftime."

I do not trust this administration to locate and support the correct contingent of thugs. Readers have watched me reassess my neocon views, but at least I trusted that President Bush was pursuing a Sharanskyite, liberty agenda. Watching President Obama in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Egypt does not give me warm fuzzies that he will do the right thing in Syria. If there is a right thing in Syria, which I find unproven.

But schadenfreude is like Jello®; even in dark situations, it can be enjoyed in large quantities.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:42 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

I was asked yesterday for my opinion on Syrian intervention. A hearty "hell no" spilled forth. Later in the evening, upon thoughtful reflection, I modified it to "let them fight each other and then kill the winner."

Posted by: johngalt at August 28, 2013 2:15 PM

August 23, 2013

Tweet of the Day

There have been three epic Twitter events: The Green Revolution in Iran, #Sharknado, and Ben Affleck cast as Batman.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:42 PM | Comments (0)

August 19, 2013

Afflicting the Comfortable, WaPo Style

I'm thieving this item, en toto, from James Taranto. If anybody is left in this great nation who does not feel that the press is completely in the bag for this President. I offer:

taranto130819.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 6:07 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Not to mention that #^(&ing nuclear "football." If only someone had told Mr. Wonderful that "being president is hard."

Posted by: johngalt at August 20, 2013 12:45 PM

August 7, 2013

Glad that Dumb Cowboy is Gone!

I'm filing this under "Media & Blogging." I do not really think that the President is stupid. I think he overestimates his intelligence, yet some have said very similar things about me...

But I remember the "Bushism" series-that-was-turned-into-books, full of juicy malapropisms from our 43rd President. W enjoyed his reputation and passed it along with strategically self-effacing humor. He would cop to "Is Our Children Learning?" Many Bushisms were like that -- a better transcription would be "Is -- Are children learning." When you do not live and die by the TelePrompTer, you rephrase in your head and change tense and voice midstream. Listening, it is very natural. But reading a transcription -- especially a purposefully ill-tempered one -- makes it appear moronic.

Enter the World's Greatest Orator. He of the 57 States. His excellency of the abstract geographical concept:

Tuesday night, President Obama made headlines during his appearance on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno," one of his numerous appearances over the years (back in 2009, he was the first sitting president to appear on the show). The President talked with Jay about a myriad of topics such as the NSA (he says that we don't have a domestic spying program), the threat from Al Qaeda, and Trayvon Martin. However, it was when the discussion turned to infrastructure that the president failed on some fairly basic American geography -- and it's not getting much attention.
[You know], the Panama [Canal] is being widened so that these big supertankers can come in. Now, that will be finished in 2015. If we don't deepen our ports all along the Gulf -- places like Charleston, South Carolina, or Savannah, Georgia, or Jacksonville, Florida -- if we don't do that, those ships are going to go someplace else. And we'll lose jobs. Businesses won't locate here.

The president was talking about deepening our ports along the Gulf, and yet he only referenced cities along the Atlantic Ocean coastline.

This ranks well below Benghazi and the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups for a scandal. But [insert dollar in jar] if Bush woulda said this...

Hat-tip Insty. He said "INSERT "57 STATES" JOKE HERE:" And I did.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:46 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Are you the first ThreeSourcer to link to The Blaze?

Posted by: johngalt at August 8, 2013 2:03 PM

July 22, 2013

The End of an Era

Alternate headline: "You're Welcome, Brother Keith!"

eat_peas_renewal.gif

Thanks to jg, however, you can still reach us at; www.nascarretards.com

Posted by John Kranz at 9:13 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

I really gotta give out that URL more often. It's easier to remember.

Posted by: johngalt at July 22, 2013 11:49 AM

July 19, 2013

Ow! That's Gotta Sting

The Jacket pummels the Moldy Sage 0f 42nd Street:

It's got to be a pretty good gig to be Paul Krugman. He's rich enough to bitch to The New Yorker about not being able to afford a home in St. John so, sigh, St. Croix has to do. He's got tenure at the second-best college in New Jersey, an equally secure gig at the second-best newspaper in New York, and he's even copped a Nobel Prize (economics, but still).

After that, Nick Gillespie gets tough. Any competent referee would have stopped this about halfway through. Embrace prurience and read the whole thing.

Posted by John Kranz at 9:38 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

"Pompous jackassery" indeed. I make it a habit to seek out my opponents' ideas for two reasons: One is to see if there is any small opening for a point of agreement. The other? As a starting point for creating a counter-argument. Without this I fear my discourse would become cold, contemptuous, detached from reality and yes, moldy.

Posted by: johngalt at July 19, 2013 9:53 PM

July 16, 2013

All-white jury?

Many are critical of the Florida Trial verdict because all six members of the jury panel were non-black, but did it have to be that way? CNN's Carol Costello tells us that a potential black juror was dismissed, by the prosecution, and guest Michael Skolnick tells us why:

COSTELLO: Although if I remember correctly one of the prosecutors struck a black, a potential black juror from the jury.

MICHAEL SKOLNICK, POLITICAL DIRECTOR TO RUSSELL SIMMONS, CO-PRESIDENT GLOBALGRIND.COM: Yeah, he was also, I was just, he was also a Fox News watcher. So that was, you know, problematic for the prosecution.

I couldn't have made this more incriminating if I tried, but those are straight, verbatim quotes. Costello even smirked after Skolnick said "Fox News watcher" but quickly caught herself.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:12 PM | Comments (0)

Bombshell in "This Florida Trial"

I risk sensationalism with the headline but under the circumstances, I believe it is warranted.

Those of us who tried to objectively follow the case that led up to this Florida trial could never explain what caused the transformation from one man following another on a public street to two men in fisticuffs and wrestling on the ground. What precipitated the anger in one or the other party? The trial's prosecutors, and most of the media commentary before, during and after, put that blame on hatred or racism in the heart of George Zimmerman. Between the racism and the gun violence angle, this comports with the typical narrative from those sources. But that entire narrative was left in pieces on the floor of the Piers Morgan show on CNN last night.

So, again, Piers Morgan's question: "But you felt that there was no doubt in your mind from what Trayvon was telling you on the phone about the 'creepy ass cracka' and so on, that he absolutely believed that George Zimmerman, this man -- you didn't know who he was at the time, but this man -- was pursuing him? And he was freaked out by it?"

Why was he freaked out by it, Rachel?

JEANTEL: Yes. Definitely. After I say, "Might be a rapist." For every boys or every man, every who's not that kinda way, see a grown man following them, would they be creep out? So you gotta take as a parent. You tell a child, "You see a grown person follow it you, run away," and all that.

I tried corroborating this with an official transcript of the Piers Morgan Live show but could not find it in unedited form, so will just have to rely on the Rush Limbaugh version quoted above, as linked by Drudge.

So Rachel suggested that Zimmerman "might be a rapist" and Travon should "run away." But where he would have run towards, he knew his younger brother was there. Did he instead decide to stop and fight, because of this perception, a possible sexual predator? At least this does more than anything I've heard to explain why Travon might have tried to beat Zimmerman senseless.

It also suggests that the Zimmerman case might be out of the news in the blink of an eye, after this revelation.

UPDATE: Here's Drudge's version, including a link to a Corner blog.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:48 PM | Comments (6)
But AndyN thinks:

It's my understanding that Zimmerman was following the advice of the 911 dispatcher and returning to his vehicle at the time he was assaulted. I don't know if there's any evidence to support that beyond Zimmerman's own account of the events. If it is true though, "decide to stop and fight" doesn't really describe turning and pursuing someone who's no longer pursuing you.

I've wondered all along if Martin didn't initially decide to confront Zimmerman with much less violent intent, but then saw the gun, took the fact that Zimmerman was armed to mean he really was a dangerous threat, and decided that the only way to save himself was to put Zimmerman down. That might be even more likely if he was concerned that Zimmerman might follow him home to his little brother. A less charitable interpretation would be that he was willing to just walk away from a garden variety crazy ass cracker, but when Jenteal planted the notion in his head that Zimmerman was gay, he decided a little gay bashing was in order.

Posted by: AndyN at July 16, 2013 4:11 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I intentionally avoided using the word "gay." I'm not as interested in watching the purveyors of group privilege politics squirm between two of their pet special interests as Limbaugh most certainly is. The most interesting part of this revelation, to me, is the part Jeantel's words may have played in sparking the confrontation. Had she not said, "might be a rapist" how likely is it Travon would have just walked into his father's girlfriend's house, to where Zimmerman had apparently followed him very near? We would never have ever learned their names.

Posted by: johngalt at July 16, 2013 9:59 PM
But AndyN thinks:

Do you know if there's a publicly available map of the neighborhood with an official version of where events took place marked on it? Every one I've seen has been nothing but speculation, but none of them I've seen guess at Zimmerman getting any closer to the house where Martin was staying than the opposite end of the street - about 2-1/2 blocks of townhomes away. I'm not trying to be antagonistic or difficult, just sincerely curious - is that what you meant by very near?

If Zimmerman actually did follow him almost to that house, Martin would have had to then follow Zimmerman all the way back up the street and around the corner to get back to where he was shot. I don't think anything in Jeantel or anybody else's comments or testimony has even suggested that Zimmerman was ever much closer to the house where Martin was staying than the point at which Martin was shot.

Posted by: AndyN at July 16, 2013 11:20 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Prior to reading this blog yesterday I was under the impression that the conflict occurred nearer to Zimmerman's home than Martin's. I can't cite a reason, that was just my understanding before reading [3rd paragraph]:

Zimmerman trailed Martin almost all the way to Martin’s then place of residence, at which point there was a confrontation.

I, and I think you, believe Zimmerman followed to observe and Martin turned back to confront. Jeantel's admitted suggestion "might be a rapist" while still conspicuously absent from the public conversation about the case, helps explain why that confrontation became so violent so quickly.

Posted by: johngalt at July 17, 2013 11:40 AM
But jk thinks:

This comment thread suggest that it truly is a media story. Helen Maria! After a gazillion hours of breathless TV coverage and a good deal of blog squawk, nobody knows what went down. Not just the hidden layers of mens rea, but the basic facts are obscured.

I am sorry but for this reason this revelation is no bombshell. The big networks are still pushing this as a "stand your ground" story, I don't think 20% of my Facebook feed knows GZ was not as white as Pat Boone. Nothing inconvenient gets out -- this bombshell will resound among Rush's listeners.

Posted by: jk at July 17, 2013 2:53 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Perhaps, but I think my original prediction still has traction. The more they keep talking about it, the more likely someone rebuts with "but Trayvon thought he was gay." After Holder puts on a show long enough that his boss believes they've satiated their public's cries for "change" they'll let it fade into history. After all, the alternative is to have a truly honest conversation about race in America. That would be the death-knell for the race baiting industry.

Posted by: johngalt at July 17, 2013 7:03 PM

July 15, 2013

Ink by the bucket

The tiny town of Westcliffe, Colorado (pop. 417) is the county seat of rural Custer County in south central Colorado and, as the county seat, has to have a "paper of record" and apparently does in the form of the Wet Mountain Tribune, "Published every Thursday since 1883."

Now, it seems a dustup ensued when the paper of record criticized, and apparently sought to block, members of a local TEA Party group marching in the town's Independence Day Parade carrying rifles. (I think, perhaps, loaded and, perhaps or probably, those "scary" black rifles so maligned these days.) For its part in the dispute the Wet Mtn. Trib. managed to earn itself some friendly competition. Those wacky TEA Partiers decided to form and publish their own weekly. They call it Sangre de Cristo Sentinel. "A different view from the same mountains." They believe they'll do well with subscriptions in this rural market, where they estimate 80% of readers are conservatives. (And a print subscription costs less than a buck a week!)

The moral of this story is to not behave like you buy your ink by the barrel if you only buy it one bucket at a time.

Hat tip: 850 KOA's Mike Rosen show.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:20 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

$20 For a business card size ad. Should we run a few?

Posted by: jk at July 15, 2013 5:17 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Yes. I also intend to subscribe, since circulation is more valuable to the "wannabe journalists" than is our 20 bucks.

Posted by: johngalt at July 15, 2013 6:17 PM

July 10, 2013

"saucily exhibiting Kelly Slater's package"

There are many reasons to embed the preceding promotional video. I'll try to hit them all, in no particular order.

Badonkadonk.

Product placements for HTC phones and Windows Phone OS, which they refer to as "Surface" at the end of the promo.

A hip soundtrack, featuring a group I'd never heard before.

Feminist schadenfreude. After all, has there ever been, in the history of advertising, a man who complained that a woman in a commercial was "sexualised?" The commenter's mindset is clearly revealed by the term "typical blonde size six surfer girl." Jealous much?

Equality. This one nearly provokes me to profanity. It is fast replacing altruism as, in my opinion, the most dangerous and dispicable idea in human thought. To wit:

So what exactly is so offensive this time, as the surfing giant is merely using a tried and tested marketing approach? Probably the fact that this little voyeuristic semi soft-core porn clip is representing a professional sport which has been fighting a long and ongoing battle for gender equality.

Please. Men and women are - wait for it - differ'nt. Commercial advertising is as free-market as anything else left in this world and its practitioners have discovered a formula that works. You may not like the formula, and you may not like that it works, but no amount of snippy commentary will ever change those facts.

Freedom. Freedom to voluntarily participate in a promo video featuring ass shots, of your own ass. "12 butt shots in one minute and 46 seconds exactly." Huzzah! Perhaps you'd prefer if she wore a burka, Ms. Salvo? As a father of daughters, I have no objections whatsoever to this promo. Natural, athletic beauty is nothing to hide or to battle against using shame, much less the government regulation that is so routinely resorted to in such matters of "inequality." You, who claim to seek "gender equality" would have more credibility if you didn't object to the same "offenses" as does the Taliban.

Did I mention badonkadonk?

Hat tip to Tully Corcoran and the "Popular Now" feed on Bing.

Posted by JohnGalt at 9:24 PM | Comments (7)
But jk thinks:

And I speak fluent Redmondonian. The tablet at 0:29 is Microsoft's "Surface:" positioned to destroy the iPad about the same time ads like this lose their efficacy and appeal.

Posted by: jk at July 11, 2013 9:41 AM
But johngalt thinks:

In "North Colorado" the iPad will be illegal.

Posted by: johngalt at July 11, 2013 2:02 PM
But Sugarchuck thinks:

What strat?

Posted by: Sugarchuck at July 11, 2013 4:21 PM
But jk thinks:

Hahahahahahahahahahaha! Make sc miss a Red Strat with a rosewood fretboard and you're doing something right!

Posted by: jk at July 11, 2013 5:20 PM
But johngalt thinks:

He must have been mesmorized by the hip soundtrack. And I too, since it easily merited its own bullet point on this, the successor to the blog for "Jazz, Guitars, and Right Wing Politics."

Posted by: johngalt at July 11, 2013 6:32 PM
But jk thinks:

There was a soundtrack?

Posted by: jk at July 11, 2013 6:42 PM

June 9, 2013

A Change in Media Tone?

Searching for an old review corner, I came upon a great post from blog brother AlexC. I will have to warn our more delicate readers that it includes a word that some might find vulgar. It seems ac is upset, because in a story of great consumer confidence and employment news, the beloved media have concocted a new statistic to tarnish the optimism.

That's great... but it wouldn't be an economic story without a "but." And it's a doozy.
The report painted a mixed employment picture, however. The proportion of consumers saying jobs were hard to get edged up to 20.7 percent from 20.2 percent, while those saying jobs were plentiful also climbed to 28.4 percent from 27.4.

I think it fair to complain that there is a different tenor and tone when the party in the White House changes. Oh, and that made me curious, What was the unemployment like in 2006?

unemployment2006.gif

Well, yeah -- but they were hard to get.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:20 AM | Comments (0)

June 6, 2013

Is the World Becoming ThreeSources?

Welcome to our world, oh mighty NYTimes Editorial Page:

Within hours of the disclosure that the federal authorities routinely collect data on phone calls Americans make, regardless of whether they have any bearing on a counterterrorism investigation, the Obama administration issued the same platitude it has offered every time President Obama has been caught overreaching in the use of his powers: Terrorists are a real menace and you should just trust us to deal with them because we have internal mechanisms (that we are not going to tell you about) to make sure we do not violate your rights.

Those reassurances have never been persuasive -- whether on secret warrants to scoop up a news agency's phone records or secret orders to kill an American suspected of terrorism -- especially coming from a president who once promised transparency and accountability. The administration has now lost all credibility. Mr. Obama is proving the truism that the executive will use any power it is given and very likely abuse it.


Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 5:52 PM | Comments (0)

June 5, 2013

Look, what are you saying?

"Broad?' Is that a weight joke? Me too sensitive?

christiebroad.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 1:43 PM | Comments (0)

June 4, 2013

Non-Sequitor much?

I think the good professor is mashing up two of his favorite topics:

insty130604.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 4:15 PM | Comments (2)
But AndyN thinks:

More happy married couples means fewer divorce filings. Fewer divorce filings means less demand for divorce lawyers. It's not really a non-sequitor, he just knows he has smart readers who will be able to make the connection.

I bet if I really wanted to I could find articles on the front page of the NYT that expose Mexican gun running, voter fraud, IRS targeting political enemies and the Benghazi debacle the same way under headlines about Christina Hendricks being too fat.

Posted by: AndyN at June 5, 2013 7:49 AM
But jk thinks:

Yeah. Maybe the bigger surprise is that he did not reference amnesty or link to "The Frisky..."

Posted by: jk at June 5, 2013 1:53 PM

May 30, 2013

The New York Times?

That right wing rag is beating up on your President again. Michael D. Shear and Peter Baker:

On Wednesday, President Obama left the White House for two Chicago fund-raisers in the hope of helping Democrats retake the House in next yearís elections. The cost of flying aboard Air Force One to his hometown: $180,000 per hour.

The same day, Michelle Obama traveled to Massachusetts to lunch with rich donors who had paid up to $37,600 per ticket at the Taj Boston Hotel. The meal included roasted Chilean sea bass with a fricassee of asparagus. Meanwhile, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and his wife, Jill, were in Rio de Janeiro, part of a six-day swing through Latin America to discuss trade and investment, including a stop in Trinidad and Tobago.

"Weíve got kind of an Obama cabal in this room," the president joked Wednesday night during a $32,400-per-couple fund-raiser with about 70 of his friends at the home of Bettylu and Paul Saltzman, longtime supporters. He said returning to Chicago for the day was like "Old Home Week."

Posted by John Kranz at 12:24 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Racists!

Posted by: johngalt at May 30, 2013 1:38 PM

May 29, 2013

Snark much?

I will miss the Minnesoootan's flat vowels, but little else about the retiring "Tea Party Favorite" Michelle Bachman (R - MN). Her bombast and quick appeals to religion are not my particular cup of Tea Party, but she is who she is.

The joy from my Facebook friends is in bounds. "The death of the Tea Party!" assured a workmate. Fine and dandy.

But His Most Probitous, Glenn Kessler, The Arbiter of Truth at the WaPo tips his hand.

The announcement that Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is not seeking reelection will leave the Capitol a much less interesting place to fact check. As one of our colleagues put it, "The entire fact checking industry may have to hold a national day of mourning."

Proof to these eyes that "The entire fact checking industry" should not exist as such.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:18 PM | Comments (0)

May 23, 2013

All Hail Taranto

Demonstrating his ignorance of both architecture and dancing, he alleges that "conservatives have laid the groundwork for a cynical two-step. First, squeeze funding for government programs, making it harder for civil servants to do their jobs. Then, when the inevitable screw-up comes, use it as further justification for cuts." -- James Taranto
Posted by John Kranz at 5:28 PM | Comments (0)

May 15, 2013

Tweet of the Day

tweet130515.gif

And a pretty good open letter to the MSM to go with it.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:13 AM | Comments (0)

March 7, 2013

A miss.

The Journal Editorial report is without question the best show on FOX News. I look forward to it every Saturday.

The last segment is "Hits and Misses" -- a descendant of the paper's "Tony and Tacky." Though they never read them, they encourage readers to "send your own hit or miss to jer@foxnews.com." Well:

WSJ Editorial Board:

I have to issue my favorite Ed Page a "miss" this week, for its failure to appreciate Sen. Rand Paul's filibuster.

I, too, support a muscular foreign policy. And -- though leery of executive power -- concede that the President enjoys broad power against enemy combatants. Yet I do not see Sen. Paul's filibuster as an attempt to permanently restrict the C-in-Cís options as much as clarifying that our rights to due process will be honored.

Your dismissive attitude does not comport with your institution's history of defending liberty.

Sincerely yours,
John Kranz
Erie, Colorado


UPDATE: It's a Conservative Smackdown! The Washington Examiner: "And some have even chosen to defend such government authority -- including the usually sound Wall Street Journal editorial board."
The Journal's editors argued Thursday that the endless global war on terror knows no national boundaries, and therefore every square inch of creation is part of a battlefield where only the laws of war restrict government's power. They concluded that "the U.S. could have targeted ... U.S. citizen [and terrorist] Anwar al-Awlaki had he continued to live in Virginia."

This thinking cannot be reconciled with the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It states clearly that no person shall "be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law," and it provides no exception for cases of especially evil people.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:14 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Snap!

It could only have been better with, "I doubt you'll use this - you're no more objective than CNN or the New York Times."

Posted by: johngalt at March 7, 2013 6:57 PM

March 5, 2013

Goalposts, moved.

Sequester-mageddon-palooza is here! But before you get to thinking that the human race has survived the draconian cuts -- they never said it would happen right away! No, this is long-term destruction of all that Americans hold dear. Josh Hicks at WaPo explains:

The reductions, known as the sequester, haven't yet diminished the country's forecasting system and will not impact disaster-relief funding in the near-term, according to government officials.

But the story could change in coming months as the cuts start to materialize more, possibly around the same time hurricane and tornado seasons begin.

So, you see, the next hurricane will be the fault of the sequester -- don't you just hope it hits Speaker Boehner's house in Ohio?

In completely unrelated news, the DJIA hit an all time high and closed at 14,253.77. In spite of government cuts. In. Spite. Of.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:18 PM | Comments (0)

February 28, 2013

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?

Posted by JohnGalt at 11:37 AM | Comments (2)
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

February 27, 2013

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.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:19 AM | Comments (0)

February 8, 2013

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.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:59 AM | Comments (0)

February 7, 2013

Croft's Pulitzer...

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

Hat-tip: Noel Sheppard

Posted by John Kranz at 7:15 PM | Comments (1)
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

Reflexive Media Censorship

From Sooper Mexican: News Media Scrub Cop Murdererís 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 ďredactedĒ version of the manifesto, in order to protect the names of the police men and women targeted by the murderer Ė 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 doesnít 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 Ė 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 Murdererís Manifesto of Pro-Obama, Hillary, MSNBC, CNN, Gay, and Anti-Gun Comments


Iíve 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 didnít fit the released manifesto Iíve read everywhere. Especially interesting, is that KFIís morning news regurgitator Bill Handel had mentioned some pro-Obama comments and anti-NRA sentiments in the manifesto.

But these werenít in the copy that KFI themselves released Ė 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 donít mention the manifesto at all.

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

FOX News reposted the manifesto, with all the names redacted as the authorities asked, but it still doesnít 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 ďCrime File NewsĒ Ė the details in it corroborate with the reading that Bill Handel gave on the KFI morning show today.

So why did they edit it?

Whatís the difference between posting 11 rambling pages and 21 rambling pages? Look at whatís 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. ďGun control is no longer debatable, itís not a conversation, its a moral mandate.Ē

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. Iíve always been a fan of yours and consider you one of the few genuine and charismatic politicians.

For Hillary 2016:

Hillary Clinton. Youíll 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. Heís (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, youíre 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 Cronkiteís 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, theyíre your (guest). Mr. Scarborough, we met at McGuireís 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, youíre a talented and charismatic journalist. Stop with all the talk show shenanigans and get back to your core of reporting.
Loves Piers Morgan:

Ögive 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 didnít smash your skull completely open, Zim.

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

So should MSNBC and Obama be blamed for this murderous scum targeting cops and their families? NO Ė 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 ďredactedĒ version of the manifesto, in order to protect the names of the police men and women targeted by the murderer Ė 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 doesnít 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 youíve created, shelve it. I am a walking exigent circumstance with no OFF or reset button. JRIC, DOJ, LASD, FBI and other local LE canít 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 todayís 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. Donít 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 childrenís best friends and recess. I know Your Sanchaís 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 ďthat guyĒ who was KIA/EOW or long term IOD/light duty in the kit room. This is exactly why ďstation 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. Donít give me that crap that its not a select fire or full auto rifle like the DoD uses. Thatís 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 isnít 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 ďadd to cartĒ. 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 FFLís. 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 (SBRís, and suppressors) without a background check and just a $10 notary signature on a quicken will maker program? The answer is NO. Iím 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. ďGun control is no longer debatable, itís not a conversation, its a moral mandate.Ē


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 clicheí 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 didnít vote in this last election as my choice of candidate, John Huntsman, didnít win the primary candidacy for his party. Mr. President, I havenít agreed with all of your decisions but of course I havenít agreed with all of your predecessors decisions. I think youíve 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 didnít think you were going to pull that one off. Romney, stop being a sore loser. You couldíve 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 ďknow he stole my watchĒ. 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 individualís 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. Iíve 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 ďlaw enforcement experts and specialistĒ will state, ďin all my years this is the worstÖÖ..Ē, Stop!!! Thatís not important. Ask yourselves what would cause somebody to take these drastic measures like I did. Thatís 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. ĖD.H. Lawrence


[redacted personal information - SM]


You guys were all important and very special to me. Donít 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 officerís misconduct. Maybe you were right. But Iím not built like others, itís 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 youíre happy, thatís 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 didnít 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 noteÖ.Donít 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.


Itís kind of sad I wonít be around to view and enjoy The Hangover III. What an awesome trilogy. Todd Phillips, donít 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. Iíve 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. Itís the truth.


Hillary Clinton. Youíll 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. Heís (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? Youíre the only person I would like to see in the White House in 2016 other than Hillary. Youíre Americaís 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, youíre 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 Cronkiteís 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, theyíre your (guest). Mr. Scarborough, we met at McGuireís 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, youíre 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. Iíve 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. Itís 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 ďMy American JourneyĒ 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 SEAís (senior enlisted advisers), you are just as important if not a greater viability to large and small commands. Itís 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, Iíve 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 ďTebowingĒ 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, Níbushe 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 Brubeckís ďTake FiveĒ 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, youíre a modern renaissance man who epitomizes the saying ďtoo cool for schoolĒ.


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. Iím 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 didnít smash your skull completely open, Zim. While Trayvonís 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 couldnít 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 ďdisabled veteranĒ during your bail hearing but doesnít 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 Iím sure heís 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, youíre effin awesome.


My opinion on women in combat MOSí, Designators, Rates, and AFSCís. 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 didnít allow blacks to fight the good fight. This is your civil rights. Donít quit!!!


Itís time to allow gay service memberís 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 canít really give a valid argument to as why gays shouldnít 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. Thatís what makes America so great. Freedom of expression. Donít 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 communitiesí resentment toward you is because they donít 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. Theyíre suffocating and donít 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. Chicagoís youth violence is a prime example of how our black communities values have declined. We can not address this nationís intolerant issues until we address our own communities morality issues first. Accountability. We need to hold ouĒ
Wow. I donít even know how to end. So Iíll just end.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:17 PM | Comments (3)
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

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
Posted by John Kranz at 6:07 PM | Comments (0)

January 14, 2013

Don't Attack Humor

I'm a big fan of Dr. Helen (once known as "the InstaWife.")

She has exposed some serious issues in "the War on Men" and has skillfully shown that many unwanted social phenomena are perhaps unintended consequences of devaluing male contributions to society.

But -- I'm too lazy to search but I have commented before -- when she veers off and attacks humor in commercials, I fear it makes her substantive points easy to dismiss. A broad brush stroke against "the continual debasement of Fathers in media" would probably suffice. Pizza Hut's joking about Daddy buying pizza for his cooking night probably is an invidious stereotype. And there are certainly several equivalent jokes one could make about gender-reverse that would invite boycotts and marches. But I want to stop the scolds -- not join them.

She is on the case for one of my favorites today. The VW Passat spot where Dad teaches his son to throw "like a girl" (to put it kindly). I admit to wondering whether the commercial would be criticized by women's or LGBT groups for its deep hidden subtext. Nope, Dr. Helen is on it from the other side. At least "a concerned reader" is very concerned:

I wonder what your reaction was to the latest salvo in the War on Men and Boys. I refer to the Volkswagen Passat commercial which shows a heartwarming scene of a father bonding with his son by playing catch with him. The problem is that he is teaching his son to throw like a girl, except that girls who play softball don't throw that badly. It was painful to watch. I have no idea how this will sell cars, or to whom.

Umm, people with a sense of humor? The tag is "pass him down something he will be grateful for." I take it as Pops's not being a star athlete but he is a good provider of time, attention, and material comforts including a safe and robust vehicle.

If you have not followed her writings, she makes poignant comments about the lack of due process in academia and its effect on matriculation ratios, and the effect of alimony and custody biases as marginal costs on marriage for young men: smart and serious stuff. Critiquing culture in commercial humor undercuts the substance of the message.

UPDATE Fellow convertible driver @donsurber agrees:

tweet130114.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 4:46 PM | Comments (0)

January 9, 2013

Quote of the Day

I too have come to respect Obama's tenacity, even as I deplore his illiberality, but I think [Marc] Thiessen's recommendation makes a deadly miscalculation: He forgets that Obama's single-minded pursuits are fully backed and protected by the mainstream press.

Whether in print or broadcast, our increasingly lofty and elitist media are a little like the FDIC to Obama's commercial bank; they provide insurance and coverage. They differ from the FDIC only in conditions and limits, because where this president is concerned, the media have none. Although he displays little respect for their assistance, Obamaís deposits are always accepted; his withdrawals are penalty-free and he is never asked to fill out a form, repay with interest or show two forms of ID -- Elizabeth Scalia


Posted by John Kranz at 10:27 AM | Comments (1)
But Terri thinks:

I think I'd make this the QOTD from the same column:

"My Will, Squared, times Digging-in-Heels, divided by [Executive Order] only equals 'Glorious Victory' when it contains a cosine 'D' and is calculated with a vector + MSM." ROFL

Posted by: Terri at January 9, 2013 3:16 PM

January 5, 2013

Fair & Balanced

AP: BOSTON (AP) -- The Republican Party seems as divided and angry as ever.
GODDAM IT!!! How can they print LIES like that!!! Republicans ARE NOT %^*@^&ING ANGRY!!! WE ARE JUST TRYING TO PRESERVE LIBERTY! WHEN WILL THOSE THICK-HEADED NUMBSKULLS GET IT!!

On a more serious note, one waits patiently for the Yahoo/AP Headline: Democrats as Monodimensional and pandering as ever.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:49 AM | Comments (0)

January 3, 2013

Quote of the Day

I really don't like the idea of an extremist propaganda outlet that seeks the destruction of America airing on U.S. cable. Fortunately, sounds like Al Jazeera's about to get rid of it. -- Allahpundit
Hat-tip: Jim Geraghty's Morning Jolt
Posted by John Kranz at 11:23 AM | Comments (0)

December 31, 2012

Faux Quote of the Day

When I was in Bangladesh last January, I was amazed by the level of Westernization for such a closed society, and that tells me two things. It tells me that the citizens of Bangladesh have no shortage of courage, and that is a good beginning to grow from. Second, it tells me that people in Bangladesh are just like people anywhere else on this flat earth of ours. -- The Amazing and Wonderful Thomas Friedman Column Generator
Hat-tip: The VA Viper (@debbywitt)
Posted by John Kranz at 3:04 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Just the titles are awesome!

"Dear Ecuador: Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way"

"Estonia is Zimbabwe"

"Our Secret Sause"

Posted by: jk at December 31, 2012 3:23 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Speaking of good ideas from third-world countries, I give you Jose Canseco (yes, THAT Jose Canseco), True American: http://is.gd/S3yZCE

Posted by: Keith Arnold at December 31, 2012 4:57 PM

December 27, 2012

Blogger's Bash!

ThreeSources Night at Miller's Grill! 6PM Friday the 28th.

Brother Ellis is in town...

Posted by John Kranz at 6:23 PM | Comments (3)
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

"Over the lips, and past the gums;
Look out abdomen, here she comes!"

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at December 27, 2012 10:56 PM
But johngalt thinks:

"Emmanuel Kant was a real pissant
who was very rarely stable,
Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar
who could drink you under the table!"

Posted by: johngalt at December 28, 2012 2:03 PM
But Jk thinks:

I knew a young man from Nantucket...

Grand time, good people! Thanks!

Posted by: Jk at December 29, 2012 12:06 AM

December 13, 2012

Jon Caldera and Glenn Reynolds

I already crowed about last Monday's totally awesome Liberty on the Rocks - Flatirons talk from Jon Caldera.

Prof. Glenn Reynolds's NYPost article today establishes a similar theme. Republicans - God Bless Their Pea-pickin' Little Hearts -- are fortunate to have some big money donors. But is that money spent wisely?

Billionaire Sheldon Adelson alone donated $150 million. But Romney lost anyway, especially among unmarried women.

Caldera laments that Colorado Republicans (and I think we can all agree I have identified a particular brand of stupid) invest in personality. It's Bob Beauprez for Governor! Let's rent the mailing lists, let's buy some ads, let's kiss some babies! Win or lose, we'll be back in four years with a Mutatis Mutandis on the candidate's name. Please note that I was not calling Rep. Beauprez stupid; he is a non-stupid element in the set.

The left, Caldera says, invests in infrastructure. Teachers' Unions, ACLU, Abortion rights, Gay Rights, NukeTheGayWhalesForJesus.org all have an office a quick walk from the Capitol building in Denver. Caldera's Independence Institute is the ONLY right-of-center spot down there. "They think in decades;" sez the big man, "we think in elections."

Caldera is perhaps thinking something more serious than a conservative internet sex advice website. But I think he'd agree with Reynolds's thesis:

My suggestion: Buy some women's magazines. No, really. Or at least some women's Web sites.

One of the groups with whom Romney did worst was female "low-information voters." Those are women who donít really follow politics, and vote based on a vague sense of who's mean and who's nice, whoís cool and who's uncool.

Since, by definition, they don't pay much attention to political news, they get this sense from what they do read. And for many, that's traditional women's magazines -- Redbook, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, the Ladies Home Journal, etc. -- and the newer women's sites like YourTango, The Frisky, Yahoo! Shine, and the like.

The thing is, those magazines and Web sites see themselves, pretty consciously, as a propaganda arm of the Democratic Party. So while nine out of 10 articles may be the usual stuff on sex, diet and shopping, the 10th will always be either soft p.r. for the Democrats or soft -- or sometimes not-so-soft -- hits on Republicans.


I know the lovely bride had to let all her subscriptions lapse. She has tried a few of the big magazines but cannot handle those tenth articles Reynolds cites.

Now I sometimes click on a link to "The Frisky" when Reynolds links from Instapundit. (Yes, it is pretty good to work from home.) I don't know that we couldn't convert ThreeSources with or without Adelson money. "Top 7 Sex Toys for Canadian Lesbians!" We could do that. Then when an election nears, we sneak in some Ayn Rand...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:47 AM | Comments (0)

December 10, 2012

Et tu, Nick Kristof?

NYTimes has a new neocon -- Nicholas Kristof.

Maybe I overstate, but a friend of this blog sends a link:

In an eyebrow raising article, liberal New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof offered a startling concession: "This is painful for a liberal to admit, but conservatives have a point when they suggest that America's safety net can sometimes entangle people in a soul-crushing dependency. Our poverty programs do rescue many people, but other times they backfire."

Writing from Jackson, Kentucky, Mr. Kristof reported that numerous poor parents in Appalachian hill country are yanking their kids out of literacy classes in order to bag a $689 monthly Supplemental Security Income (S.S.I.) check per kid. The checks continue until the child reaches 18 years of age.

"The kids get taken out of the program because the parents are going to lose the check," said Billie Oaks, who runs a literacy program here in Breathitt County, a poor part of Kentucky. "It's heartbreaking."

Cornell University Economics Professor Richard V. Burkhauser says parents are inducing illiteracy to keep the taxpayer-funded welfare checks rolling in. "One of the ways you get on this program is having problems in school. If you do better in school, you threaten the income of the parents. It's a terrible incentive," said Professor Burkhauser.


Kristof's Bluegrass State redemption even includes an admission that marriage has economic benefits. Quell Horreur!
But the New York Times' Kristof appears to have found religion on the economic and developmental virtues of marriage as well: "A growing body of careful research suggests that the most effective strategy is to work early on children and education, and to try to encourage and sustain marriage," Kristof writes.

Oh well, maybe he can get a job on FOX.

UPDATE: Michael Barone read the same Kristof column.

Breathitt County, by the way, has long been a heavily Democratic county. Even in 1972 it voted 59% for Democrat George McGovern over Republican Richard Nixon. But it's in coal country and it voted 53% for John McCain in 2008 and 66% for Mitt Romney in 2012. More proof that Romney's 47% remark was not only hugely ill-advised but simply inaccurate.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:38 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Wait, do you mean to say, if you subsidize something you'll get more of it? If only we'd known!

Posted by: johngalt at December 10, 2012 11:36 AM

November 30, 2012

Quote of the Day

Obama was permitted by the media to claim, or at least strongly imply, that the painful cuts Romney was talking about (and Obama, the Great Leader, was not talking about) could be averted simply by levying a small tax on the "richest 1%." It was a lie. It was further a lie the media assisted in. All those Fact Checks and not a single column noting that the central pillar of Barack Obama's Re-Election Strategy was a baldfaced lie that only the uninformed or innumerate could possibly believe.

The media is strongly complicit in this lie. -- Ace (Hat-tip Jim Geraghty

Posted by John Kranz at 10:06 AM | Comments (0)

November 6, 2012

News Polls: Not worth the paper they're printed on

Revising political poll results to achieve a specific outcome by adjusting the sample is now so commonplace and so "oh, you mean that's not ok?" that newspapers are writing stories about it!

I predict this will be the post mortem lesson of this election - how the RCP average of political polls has exacerbated this practice. They had to go even further so that the bad polls can drag the good ones far enough to make the RCP average what the press wants it to be.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:22 PM | Comments (0)

November 5, 2012

Even the Children Learn

I respect the sobreity of brother Ellis' prior post but I do believe caution is in order. There's another equally possible outcome. After all, none of the republics which failed throughout history had the internet... or YouTube.

This episode has been on my mind since the summer of 2008. Now, on the eve of the referendum vote, it finally seems fully appropriate.


Posted by JohnGalt at 5:56 PM | Comments (1)
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Thanks for that. Amazing how a little Star Trek can brighten up our notions of the future!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at November 5, 2012 7:34 PM

November 1, 2012

Somebody Stop Me!

Brother Keith and I are a bad influence on each other, non?

But the graphics could be fun:


Posted by John Kranz at 5:06 PM | Comments (4)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

EAT MOR CHIKIN.

UV BIN WARND.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 1, 2012 5:17 PM
But jk thinks:

BLSSS D PROFT

Posted by: jk at November 1, 2012 5:20 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

We are SO gonna get a fatwa declared on us.

I hope I manage to do as well as the cow did when they come for me. It would be pretty embarrassing if I didn't.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 1, 2012 5:29 PM
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Do any of y'all remember AllahPundit years ago pre-HotAir? This could be your career breakthrough, go for it!

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at November 1, 2012 8:12 PM

October 4, 2012

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Posted by John Kranz at 1:13 PM | Comments (4)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

You're thinking of Twodor and Fordor.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

http://amzn.com/0451452615

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

September 28, 2012

Stupid Internet Comment of the Day

I did my best to come up with an optimistic answer to today's Libertario Delenda Est but except for "Libertarians don't vote" I couldn't do it. Instead I'll distract with humor in the form of a "Stupid Internet Comment of the Day."

While searching reports of Mitt Romney's Home Run Tuesday I read some comments on the HuffPo version of events. If you've already read my post highlighting the significance of Romney's statement this will be even more transparently stupid than it already is:

Huffpo0927.jpg

Posted by JohnGalt at 7:11 PM | Comments (2)
But Jk thinks:

But how can I KNOW which words SHOULD be all caps and which words SHOULD NOT?

Posted by: Jk at September 28, 2012 10:53 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Apparently the HuffPo style guide says to only capitalize words which are MISPELED.

Posted by: johngalt at October 1, 2012 5:25 PM

None Dare Call it Bias!

MSNBC? Mai non! If you have time, this clip is interesting both from a media bias angle, but also for the reasons that an optical illusion is so fascinating.

If you don't have time, here's the short version: MSNBC shows Governor Romney taking the make after Rep Ryan has spoken. The crowd chants -- and you can tell because the text is printed -- "Ryan! Ryan! Ryan!" And Governor Romney breaks in and being all full of himself, coaches the crowd to instead say "Romney - Ryan! Romney -- Ryan!"

Only, as a talk radio caller explains, that is not at all what happened. When the text is removed from the screen, you hear that the crowd is yelling "Romney Romney!" The Governor is being magnanimous in ensuring that his VP is included, and Ryan waves it away with an "aw shucks" gesture.

Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 5:06 PM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2012

Maybe the World is ThreeSources

I'm going to present this as a screen grab in case the good folks at the Telegraph change the photo. But my new favorite writer, Thomas Pascoe, has a piece titled "Bundesbank's IMF rant exposes a divide at the heart of the eurozone." Here's the accompanying photo: a couple fräuleinen upset that the IMF has impugned their country's monetary policy. It's true -- read the caption!

Brilliant.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:24 AM | Comments (0)

September 22, 2012

None Dare Call it Bias...

Oh, hell I do!

Yahoo/AP Headline to describe the tax returns of a guy who paid $2 million in taxes and donated $4 million to charity:

Romney gives Dem support for tax deductions claim

Posted by John Kranz at 12:13 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Can you believe it? Mitt could have paid less in taxes this year but elected not to for blatant - political - purposes. The nerve of that guy!

Despite this the worst that AP can say is Mitt promised to never pay more than he was obligated.

Romney probably also will be reminded by the Democrats [or by AP!!] by [sic] something else he said in August. Defending his right to pay no more taxes than he owed, he said, "I don't pay more than are legally due, and frankly if I had paid more than are legally due I don't think I'd be qualified to become president."

QED: Mitt says he's not qualifed to be president.

Posted by: johngalt at September 22, 2012 12:46 PM

September 21, 2012

Declaration of Independence for the iPod Generation

One of the problems with teaching American History and the Founding Fathers is the "crusty old white dude" barrier. Here, Soomo Publishing blends a new teaching tool with a cover of a popular song to teach a little good old revolutionary history.

In this one I like the music AND the lyrics.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:30 PM | Comments (1)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Grammy!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at September 22, 2012 11:25 AM

September 13, 2012

Shameless Self-Promotion

ThreeSourcers who are also regular listeners of Denver talk radio host Mike Rosen may have heard him discussing a familiar topic yesterday. I've updated that post to include a link to the audio for any who may have missed it. (That would be ALL of you, I suspect.)

Posted by JohnGalt at 4:00 PM | Comments (2)
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Great--wish he had promoted the site by name, though. Oh well, I'll put something on Twitter, I am sure my mighty throng of 100+ followers will overwhelm the servers...

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at September 13, 2012 5:34 PM
But jk thinks:

Way cool. I confess the double link exceeded my attention span when I first saw this. Ignore the squirrel and click here to go straight to the audio.

Posted by: jk at September 13, 2012 6:05 PM

September 12, 2012

Quote of the Day

Politico shares my understanding of the order of events, and points out that other Republicans are leaving Romney's cheese out in the wind. I can't wait for all the fact checks! I'll make a deal with my Obama-supporting friends. We'll trade you Citizens United for a media this compliant. -- Daniel Foster
Posted by John Kranz at 2:36 PM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2012

There Must be Some Mistake!

UPDATE: If you prefer, rather than reading this post yourself you may listen to 850 KOA's Mike Rosen quote it heavily at the open of his radio show yesterday morning. [First mention at about 2:45.] (And yes, I have added "shameless self-promotion" to the categories for this post.)

Annenberg is at it again. A caller to Mike Rosen today [third hour, last caller] said her daughter referred her to a website called "Next Elect." I looked into it and deduced that she meant ElectNext dot com. It's a very slick site with lots of colorful interactive graphics and great big type (that even seniors can read.)

First a warning: If you want to read anything about what the site is and who is behind it, DON'T SIGN UP AND ANSWER QUESTIONS. I did so and now all of the "about us" stuff is gone. (But I do still remember the "Annenberg" Public Policy blah blah from the bottom of the welcome page.) I even tried clicking the "Log Out" button, but it automatically logs me back in. Why? Perhaps because, based upon my answers to about 10 questions on an intentionally limited set of issues: Economy, Energy, Taxes, National Security (the last having no questions answered) the site recommended my "matches" for President of the United States. Brace yourself:

Gary Johnson- 73%
Jill Stein- 65%
Mitt Romney- 64%

I think they really want to make sure I don't forget that my first choice should be the Libertarian Party candidate and my second choice the Green Party candidate. There are nice color photos of these three candidates stuck on my browser screen now, with the percentage figure placed prominently next to a cute red heart shape under each name and pic.

No mention, of course, of the fact that neither of those two candidates has a chance in Obama's Utopia of being elected. "Party not person" is one of Mike Rosen's mantras and in our two-party system he's exactly right. To elevate Johnson and Stein to equal stature with Romney and Obama is the epitome of political malpractice. (And, I'll add, Annenberg knows it.)

I dug further. I clicked to find out why I didn't have more agreement with Mitt Romney and found:

- Romney "agrees" that "The federal government should invest in domestic sources of fossil fuels."
- Romney "agrees" that "Ethanol subsidies should be maintained at the current $6 billion/year level."
- Romney "disagrees" that "The federal government should reduce taxes on manufacturing companies to create jobs and help stimulate the economy."
- Romney "agrees" that "The federal government should increase infrastructure spending to help stimulate the economy."

I used the "did we get this wrong?" button to "please let us know if we got our facts wrong" and rebut the last two items in the list with links to here and here. But it's a Sissyphean task. I'd sooner hold back the tide than to get objective and clearly worded position statements to appear throughout this cartoon-like website.

Even worse, most visitors will not be as circumspect as I was and will list all of their hot-button issues. Even with the illusion of "ranking your issues" the key issues that affect the future of our nation will be diluted by the social issues that are demagogued on the path to ever larger government and ever greater government spending.

All in the public interest, of course.

My advice: Avoid it. Denounce it. Stay on message. [My message is the one in comment #3.]

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:52 PM | Comments (0)

September 7, 2012

Democrat Fact Check - Deux

JK treated us to DNC 2012 Fact Check - Day One. It was refreshing but I was left wanting more. Annenberg's Fact Check dot org does not disappoint. A highlight:

■A venture capitalist claims that Obama is ďmore than 60 percentĒ toward his goal of doubling exports by 2015. Government figures show the exports have increased by 29 percent since Obama announced his goal.

That venture capitalist was Steve Westly, but the claim was repeated by my own state's governor, John Hickenlooper. [eighth comment]

And there were some bogus claims about abortion and birth control, but since those are issues of concern only to Democrat politicians with a record of failure we'll just let them slide.

Most interesting to me was the fact check of the Clinton speech. While his talent for making statistics say what he wants them to meant that little he said was technically wrong, the former president did utter a number of exaggerations. My favorite, other than conservation [plus a boom in oil production] reduced oil imports to a 20-year low, was blaming Republicans for preventing the creation of more than a million new jobs because they "blocked the president's job plan."

Two independent economists -- Mark Zandi of Moodyís Analytics and Joel Prakken of Macroeconomics Advisers -- had estimated that Obamaís proposed American Jobs Act would add more than 1 million jobs. Zandi claimed it would add 1.9 million jobs; Prakken 1.3 million. Senate Republicans blocked the $447 billion measure, and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell denounced it as ďa charade thatís meant to give Democrats a political edgeĒ in 2012.

Let's follow Bill Clinton's advice and do the uh-rith-mah-tick:

$447,000,000,000
divided by
1,900,000 jobs
equals
$279,375 per government created job.

This reminds me of the legendary six-hundred dollar toilet seat. Since the national average wage is on the order of $42,000, the president proposed that Uncle Sam pay a premium of over $237 thousand dollars PER JOB "created."

Where is that damned Keynsian multiplier when we need it? It would cost less to just mail those 1.9 million folks a check for the next six years. Maybe by then we can elect a Republican president, take a couple of tax cuts, roll back some regulations, [second comment] and get some SUSTAINABLE private-sector jobs created!

Posted by JohnGalt at 7:09 PM | Comments (0)

September 5, 2012

Battlespace Preparation

Never give up! Fight on the beaches! Fight on the editorial pages!

I appreciate the competitiveness/combativeness/bellicosity of the Romney campaign. After four years ago -- screw being nice. The concentrated pushback to the scurrilous lies that were "Fact Check" reactions to Rep Ryan's speech have paid off. In multiples.

A Facebook friend is shocked that even (I hope you are sitting down) even the DNC has been caught in a Fact Check. And busted they are: Read 'em and weep!

Without pushing back on the bogus Ryan checks, they would have let those slide. Curiously, all of theirs seem to be actual untruths. It is still in no way "fair." But it is way better than we'd have seen calmly accepting "just some media bias that we can't do anything about."

Now they are busted -- and some of the, ahem, lies are devastating.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:56 AM | Comments (4)
But johngalt thinks:

A fact check? I counted eight "dubious or misleading claims" documented by, whom? Annenberg Public Policy Center? President Obama and the Democrats must have really gone too far this cycle, earning decisive slap-downs from both Newsweek and APPC.

Wow. Just, wow.

Posted by: johngalt at September 5, 2012 2:23 PM
But AndyN thinks:

It's beyond deniable that fewer and fewer people believe that the legacy media have any credibility. Judging by the shrill desperation with which Obama has been conducting his campaign, it seems as though even insiders believe he's going to be crushed. Could it be that the press and the leftists who feed them realize that nothing they say can get Obama reelected, so they're willing to start reporting more honestly in an effort to restore their credibility so that they can exert some influence on the next election?

Posted by: AndyN at September 5, 2012 4:52 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I think there's something to that AndyN. But this is also a big factor: Fox News drew more viewers for the GOP convention, not just than their cable competition, but than the "free" over-the-air networks NBC, CBS and ABC. That seems like a first.

Posted by: johngalt at September 5, 2012 5:44 PM
But jk thinks:

I strongly hope you're right, AndyN. Certainly among the informed, you are. But I fear they continue to hold sway among the Bryan-Caplan-call-your-office uninformed voters.

I hope your polling is on as well. I'm strangely contented for me, but Professor Reynolds needn't worry about my getting cocky.

Posted by: jk at September 5, 2012 5:52 PM

August 31, 2012

Marching Orders

Objective Journalist Howard Fineman:

I think this is for real -- here's a link. I'm actually shocked.

Wherever the orders originated, my Facebook friends received them and are marching. Ryan Liar is outpolling cute kittens.

UPDATE: &

Posted by John Kranz at 5:41 PM | Comments (0)

August 30, 2012

1.58% GDP Growth is Great! You Whiners!

Now this stupefies.

Republicans ignoring signs of some economic gains

WASHINGTON (AP) -- You wouldn't know it from listening to the Republican National Convention, but the nation's economic picture seems to be slowly getting a little brighter.


Remember what incredible merchants of sunshine these guys were when a Republican was in the White House?

Posted by John Kranz at 7:13 PM | Comments (1)
But Ellis Wyatt thinks:

Mar. 15, 2009 - The "green shoots" of economic revival are already evident, Bernanke told CBS program "60 Minutes"...

Aug. 2, 2010 - In an Aug. 2 op-ed headlined "Welcome to the Recovery," Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said that "we are on a path back to growth."

Mar. 8, 2011 - Enough economists have jumped on the ‚Äúgreen shoots‚ÄĚ bandwagon to pronounce a trend: ‚ÄúThe worst is over, and the green shoots of an economic recovery are blossoming.‚ÄĚ

Feb. 16, 2012 - NPR: "The number of jobless claims for January 2012 was at the lowest point since March 2008. Businesses are reporting profits, buyers are reporting confidence."

There is a theory that cheery confidence makes readers and listeners confident and the economy recovers through psychology.

Also, maybe the proles will buy it and reelect Obama.

I believe that similar reports on the War were in the Atlanta newspapers in the spring of 1864.

Posted by: Ellis Wyatt at August 30, 2012 8:16 PM

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Forbes fact checks the palm-readers fact checkers.

The number 1 or 2 headline on Yahoo all day has been "Paul Ryan is a Lying Weasel" or some such thing. I think we are going to be hearing about these for some time -- these two links might be handy:

Yes, Paul Ryan Spoke the Truth About Obama's Fiscal Record at the Republican Convention -- Avik Roy, Forbes
Medicare, Debt Downgrade, Simpson-Bowles, Stimulus.

On That Janesville Plant, Ryanís Not Lyiní -- Jim Geraghty, NRO
Janesville [Hero of Canton?] GM Plant

Posted by John Kranz at 5:56 PM | Comments (0)

August 29, 2012

The Real National Disaster

Michael Ramirez.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:49 PM | Comments (0)

Our Margaret

I'll dispense with the trajectory of my appreciating Peggy Noonan, save to say it went way up once. And it stayed there for some time.

But she was a gifted speechwriter, and her opinion -- on a speech -- seems worthy.

The opportunity Ann Romney missed was to provide first person testimony that is new, that hasn't been spoken, that hasn't been in the books and the magazine articles. She failed to make it new and so she failed to make it real.

Iím not sure her speech was a loss but it doesn't feel like a gain. We'll see. The real reaction to a highly publicized speech emerges not overnight on twitter but over days and weeks as people chat in the office and on the sidewalk in front of school. So we'll see what they say, we'll see how it bubbles up.


What? She's kinder but just as strange to Gov. Christie. But I don't know...
I want to tell you they marched out of the hall Tuesday night on fire for their side. But I was there and they did not. They walked out like people who weren't quite sure what to think or how to feel but were hoping for the best because they love their country. A lot.

She was there and I was not. But my lengthening embarrassment of belonging to "the stupid party" halted and was regressed last night. That Republican Party I saw. The one with Govs. Haley and Sandoval and Christie. The one with Ted Cruz and Ann Romney. Yessir, that's the stupid party for me! I'll say it once and say it loud -- I'm a Republican and I'm proud!

If she was there in Tampa (I don't doubt she was there but suspect she may have written it off the written text so that she could earlier get to sleep or do body shots at Homocon, I dunno). If she heard Ann Romney on the floor in that mutual affection that came through the TV. If she missed that, it really is over between us.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:55 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Don't forget Mia Love! Look for the video of her speech.

But of course, now she is a Tall Poppy.

Posted by: johngalt at August 29, 2012 1:18 PM
But jk thinks:

Watched it just an hour ago. I liked it, but I'm not sure it would convince Ms. Noonan.

Posted by: jk at August 29, 2012 1:32 PM

August 21, 2012

All Hail Taranto

Clearly remiss in not awarding a headline of the day on this yesterday. James is bemused that many left wing pundits complain that Chairman Ryan is not sufficiently orthodox to the tenants of Objectivism. Any port in a storm for these guys.
Posted by John Kranz at 3:58 PM | Comments (0)

August 17, 2012

Correction of the Day

Or, as Taranto would say, other than that, the story was accurate:

C.W. Nevius' column about Most Holy Redeemer banning drag queen performers incorrectly stated that entertainer Peaches Christ appeared at an event at the church's hall with a dildo shaped like a crucifix. He did not appear at the event, nor does he use the prop. -- SFGate

Hat-tip: @pourmecoffee

Posted by John Kranz at 4:21 PM | Comments (0)

August 13, 2012

The Clerisy

In her fascinating book, Bourgeois Dignity, Deirdre McCloskey picks up the delightful term "Clerisy" from my man Coleridge.

Yet in the late nineteenth century the artists and the intellectuals--the "clerisy," as Samuel Taylor Coleridge and I call it--turned against liberal innovation. The treason of the clerisy led in the twentieth century to the pathologies of nationalism and socialism and national socialism, and in the twenty-first century to the pieties of radical environmentalism, and to the dismal pessimism of the union left and the traditional right.

In Britain, they're called the chattering class, but I never felt we had a good word for these folks in America. But I like "The Clerisy" very much.

Amy Walter of ABC submits a successful application to membership today. She tells what voters want (and don't) and why they voted as they did in the last few elections. How very handy. The Yahoo teaser caught my eye:

More government? Less? An ideological battle that voters don't want
In picking Rep. Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney assured an ideological campaign where a debate over the role of government will be front and center.

Icky. Voters don't want that. If you click through, Walter will explain that crazies like us want it
In picking Rep. Paul Ryan, whose eponymous budget plan has become synonymous with political polarization, Mitt Romney assured an ideological campaign where a debate over the role of government will be front and center. It is a debate the Obama campaign and partisans on both sides are also eager to have. But it's not a debate that swing voters want.

They aren't as interested in choosing whether government should be more active or less. They are more interested in simply having it work.

Who's gonna buy my condoms? Huh? Which candidate gives you Cancer? Who has better hair? (you gotta like the GOP this year on that important metric.)

I loathe her hubris. She goes on to explain the last several elections. But I must concede that she has a point. If only there existed some enterprise that could inform and educate people on important issues. Perhaps it would even be popular enough to fund with advertising. Hmm....

Posted by John Kranz at 10:18 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Haven't read clerist Walter's piece yet but I suspect she's alluding to this poll showing that, while more than three quarters of those polled believe the cost of government entitlement programs will cause major economic problems for the country, neither raising taxes or cutting those entitlements could garner majority support.

To summarize: "Voters" may not want the ideological battle but reality has delivered it to them. Time for "voters" to pull their collective heads out of the sand and do something at which they're neither accustomed or accomplished - think.

Posted by: johngalt at August 13, 2012 12:02 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Her trite close is the most comment-worthy thing she said:

"In other words, voters are looking less at ideology and more at competency. And that's not something that either side has been able to show that can deliver."

These "voters" she talks about are specifically the swing voters. Those with no guiding principle or philosophy. No surprise then that the only metric available to them is "it works." If it is given a chance - enough of a chance that it works - then it is up to all of us to explain to the swing voters why. Rest assured that the ideology of government will spend its dying breath trying to deny it was a predictable result from a competing ideology of success and prosperity.

Posted by: johngalt at August 13, 2012 3:33 PM

August 3, 2012

None Dare Call it Bias

Let me give my standard rant, for those who have just tuned in. The media is cowardly, incurious, lazy, and biased. Those who attribute all those four flaws to bias sound black-helicopterish. Recognizing bias as part of the fourth estate's four cardinal sins puts it all together.

And. Yet. The jobs numbers are out:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama got new figures Friday to buttress his argument that he's presiding over steady, if slow, economic growth. But the government's report that the overall rate of unemployment actually crept up to 8.3 percent allows Republican rival Mitt Romney to keep pressure on Obama to defend his record.

You have to dig into the second paragraph to get the headline number (169,000), but first we must ascertain that our sheep readers are aware that the President is doing swell.

No mention that 169,000 is not enough to keep up with population growth. Less than no mention that after quarter after quarter of sub-par growth, we should be seeing breakout numbers. They did mention the 8.3% unemployment -- I suppose I should be pleased.

UPDATE: Matthew Continetti, going for a quote of the day:

With Romney the storyline had proven more elusive. Before settling on "gaffe-prone" the media had difficulty choosing between extremes. They shoot at Romney coming and going. One day he is a bully, the next day he is a wimp. One day he has "no core," the next day he is a radical. One day he is out of touch, the next day he is pandering to his base. In the morning they say Romney is too vague, in the evening they say his specific policies will be ruinous. Romney is too secretive, but what we know about him is scary. The whiplash from attack to attack provokes nausea. Some, like Harry Reid, have taken simply to making things up.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:05 AM | Comments (4)
But johngalt thinks:

Personally I enjoyed the news analysis that said the new jobs report is the cause for the 200-point rise at the open of the stock market this morning. "Unemployment is up, but hiring is too!"

Posted by: johngalt at August 3, 2012 1:51 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

169,000 new jobs? Nice. Just 10,831,000 to go...

http://is.gd/o4fbUr

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 3, 2012 2:50 PM
But jk thinks:

Slow but steady Keith -- under the President's firm leadership!

Posted by: jk at August 3, 2012 3:47 PM
But jk thinks:

That's not bias, that's true. As the jobs numbers continue to suck, the pressure will be on The Bernank to fire up the presses. The market loves that.

Posted by: jk at August 3, 2012 6:39 PM

August 2, 2012

A Headline I Doubt Very Much

Odds of Syria peace get bleaker as Annan quits U.N. mission
UNITED NATIONS/GENEVA (Reuters) -- Former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is stepping down as the U.N.-Arab League mediator in the 17-month-old Syria conflict at the end of the month, the United Nations said on Thursday, the latest sign that the outlook for a diplomatic solution is bleak. "Mr. Annan has informed me, and the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, Mr. Nabil Elaraby, of his intention not to renew his mandate when it expires on 31 August 2012," Ban said in a statement, adding that he and Elaraby were in discussions on appointing a successor to Annan.
Posted by John Kranz at 4:00 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

It gets bleaker? This is possible? That sort of implies that the hopes of peace previously were previously less bleak.

I withdraw my demand that we exit the United Nations and make them pack their bags. We need to keep them around - for the laughs.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 2, 2012 5:04 PM
But jk thinks:

Possibly, Syria could get bleaker. My amazement is that somebody actually thought "It's going to be okay -- Kofi Annan is there!" And somebody is now distraught that the kleptocrat has gone home.

Posted by: jk at August 2, 2012 8:23 PM

July 24, 2012

Jon Stewart Nails it!

The Daily Show with Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Brian Ross Blows It
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogThe Daily Show on Facebook

UPDATE: Of course, compared to their coverage of the suspect's mother, the Tea Party smear is Pulitzer stuff!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:37 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Kudos to Stewart. It would be funnier if ABC's bias wasn't so (*@#ing transparent and dangerous.

Related: Via web search I've learned that New York City GOP membership files contain the name "Brian Ross." We don't know if this is the same Brian Ross but it is "Brian Ross, New York, New York." Hey everyone, BRIAN ROSS IS A REPUBLICAN!!

Posted by: johngalt at July 24, 2012 3:17 PM
But jk thinks:

I understand there were 25 in the Denver Metro area. Considering that he could have not been any, Ross had an almost 4% chance of being correct. I suggest that is the new ABC News standard.

Posted by: jk at July 24, 2012 3:31 PM

July 19, 2012

Huh? What?

ABC News's Jonathan Karl pens a piece reporting that the DNC is pulling videos of Ann Romney and her dressage horses, and offering apologies.

"Our use of the Romneys' dressage horse was not meant to offend Mrs. Romney in any way, and we regret it if it did," DNC spokesman Brad Woodhouse told ABC News. "We were simply making a point about Governor Romney's failure to give straight answers on a variety of issues in this race. We have no plans to invoke the horse any further to avoid misinterpretation."

For those unfamiliar with the genre, that constitutes a Democratic apology. "I'm sorry I called your six year old nephew a 'queerbait c*******ing a******' but I was just trying to highlight your willful misrepresentation of the fractional reserve banking system!"

We discussed this issue a bit around these parts, and I suggest that sentient observers were unmoved by political ads which ridiculed the therapy of a woman with a chronic disease. Yet Karl, with no proof, suggests this as an example of the high-mindedness of [President Obama?] [Speaker Pelosi?] [David Axelrod?] [The Pope?]

This is already a brutal campaign, but the Obamas have long said families are off limits. Apparently somebody high up reminded the DNC of that.

No doubt the Romney camp would enjoy the same approbation if it pulled objectionable ads.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:45 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

But what does the DNC have to apologize for? "The DNC didn't write that ad! Somewhere along the way, somebody helped them. Somebody else made it happen!"

Posted by: johngalt at July 19, 2012 7:32 PM

July 13, 2012

Friday Calf Blog

IS BACK!

And some good news at the link for Firefly fans.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:19 PM | Comments (0)

White Power?

Damn. Those right wingers are all alike!


Posted by John Kranz at 9:50 AM | Comments (0)

July 10, 2012

Birth Announcement

It's a Blog!!!

Blog friend and liberty lover, Terri, has moved her calf blogging and trenchant commentary to Ruminants.

UPDATE: Changed in blogroll.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:55 PM | Comments (1)
But Terri thinks:

Thanks JK!

Posted by: Terri at July 10, 2012 5:52 PM

June 29, 2012

Classic of the Year

In an opinion piece in today's WSJ, The Journal describe the ACA ruling as "a 1-4-4 decision." Classic. What a brilliant snippet of writing.

The Refugee would link, but then Rupert would have to kill him (or at least bug his cell phone).

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 2:56 PM | Comments (0)

June 28, 2012

Quote of the Day

It will be hard to pick one today, but I am going with the guys at CNN who watched their own division report a prewritten story that the mandate had been struck down.

"Fucking humiliating," said one CNN veteran. "We had a chance to cover it right. And some people in here don't get what a big deal getting it wrong is. Morons."

Yup. I think I'll stick with this one. HT Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 4:04 PM | Comments (0)

June 27, 2012

Errata

Other than that, the WaPo "Outsourcing" story was accurate.

Posted by John Kranz at 8:01 PM | Comments (0)

June 21, 2012

Quote of the Day

With MS, media bias and Hippotherapy in one story, we can drag it along another day!

Wow, O'Donnell is just inept. Bob Schieffer calls Ann Romney an Olympic athlete, and Mitt Romney corrects him on it ("In this case, it's not her personally"). Then, literally seconds later, O'Donnell pops up with his big canned-ham face and sneers, "Romney just claimed his wife is an Olympic athlete!" And then he says horses haven't really helped her with her MS because of Romney's tax returns or something. All for the purpose of claiming Romney is "rewriting" history.

O'Donnell must think his target audience is really, really stupid. And he's got some solid evidence. After all, they're watching him.

Incidentally, I do believe Scary Larry when he drops into his Concern Voice and says he's not mocking Ann Romney because she has MS. He just doesn't care that she does, because she's in his way politically. -- Jim Treacher


Posted by John Kranz at 2:46 PM | Comments (0)

June 20, 2012

Two Minute Hate

Now this is not in any way to make light of Laurence O'Donnell's difficulties with being a total bastard -- it's obviously a very difficult thing to bear. But that NBC gets a tax deduction for putting this derision on the air...

Hat-tip: Brother Keith, who linked to this in a comment below.

Wow. Just wow.

UPDATE: IBD: Which End Of The Horse Is Lawrence OíDonnell?

It is bad enough that MSNBC's Lawrence OíDonnell mocks Ann Romney for riding horses to treat her multiple sclerosis. But then shows what an ignoramus he is by saying that "dressage (competitive horse riding) does not appear in any of the more traditional courses of treatment" for MS.

Actually, for many illnesses riding horses is a legitimate therapy technique. Itís called "hippotherapy." Wikipedia has a nice description of it, and thereís even an group called the American Hippotherapy Association.

UPDATE II: Here's dagny's last video promoted to embed:

Nope, no therapy, no athleticism.

UPDATE III: Neil Cavuto piles on quite humorously and forthrightly:

Ann Romney doesn't need my defense.

But her critics need to use some common sense.

Because you might find such therapy strange, trust me when I tell you, the disease it helps treat, is a lot more strange. And cruel.

So go ahead and have a good laugh over Ann and her horses and whether they have anything to do with her illness.

UPDATE III.V: (Oooh, there's video of Cavuto on the intertube thingy...):

Posted by John Kranz at 4:09 PM | Comments (7)
But jk thinks:

Thanks for that last YouTube, dagny. Bunch o' one-percenters!

You and jg give O'Donnell too much credit to actually listen. I just look at the seething hatred in his eye. Gov. Romney made none of these claims. I think "Olympic athlete" as a part owner (and trainer) was in good fun between Schieffer and Romney. And he is not submitting dressage to IPAB as an MS treatment. "She has a passion for it and, frankly, her getting back on a horse after she was diagnosed with MS was able -- she's convinced -- to help her regenerate her strength and renew that vigor."

That does not strike me as an outrageous claim. Every physical therapist I had encouraged me to do the things I enjoyed even if I could do them only on a much lower level. And every one would have been thrilled had I taken up dressage: balance, strength, passion.

Now this is not in any way to make light of Laurence O'Donnell's difficulties with being a complete asshole -- it's obviously a very difficult thing to bear. But that NBC gets a tax deduction for putting this derision on the air...

Posted by: jk at June 20, 2012 6:03 PM
But dagny thinks:

JK,

You and your lovely bride as well are welcome to come to Atlantis and take up dressage any time!

Posted by: dagny at June 20, 2012 7:33 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Some good stuff in response to this on Twitter, including a guy who does the rant as well as anyone, Neil Cavuto. [click-through for video]

"Just check your facts before you joke about it, because right about now, you condescending sanctimonious twits who are allegedly healthy, you are proving you do not know the benefits of hosrseback riding one bit, but you sure are good at piling on the lies and shoveling what amounts to unadulterated horse … well … stuff."
Posted by: johngalt at June 20, 2012 7:52 PM
But jk thinks:

Heh, jg and I were on parallel tracks -- I embedded the video at about the same time he added it.

On some level, it's not worth even complaining about MSNBC. And I think that Andrea Mitchell and Chris Cilizza's "WaWa-Gate" was far worse. But when these people talk about FOX...

And thanks, dagny, we are very anxious to try it. (Well, the lovely bride is anxious to try it and I just have a general anxiety -- you guys have a crane or something to get me on a horse?)

Posted by: jk at June 21, 2012 9:39 AM
But johngalt thinks:

The reason it's worth complaining about MSNBC is expressed in Cavuto's close (from the video.)

"Sometimes, you know, you repeat lies often enough, some impressionable good people, they're fooled. You can lie to them and they're decent enough to believe it. I'm just telling you, don't. I just gave you the facts. And ask yourself this: If they're that eggregious at lying about that issue, what else are they lying about?"
Posted by: johngalt at June 21, 2012 12:15 PM
But Terri thinks:

Here here on all counts!

"let's see, I want to learn to be a good rider for my horse....should i take up classical dressage even though I know I can never afford a grand champion horse, or should I take up hacking through the woods?" doh

ps - I've worked at the Therapeutic Riding Ctr in Longmont and seen big changes in people with a lot of different physical challenges. It definitely has potential.

Posted by: Terri at June 21, 2012 2:31 PM

June 19, 2012

Quote of the Day

[Neil] Munro sickened the nation's politeness police by choosing his own moment to blurt out a question at a presidential press conference.

Pushing America further to the brink of ruin, he kept at Obama with a follow-up question, forcing the president to abandon his talking points and address him personally. Within 15 seconds, the decency of the office of the presidency was defiled, and the integrity of journalism was heartlessly pissed on, forever tarnished by some guy saying something when he shouldn't have.

If youíre anything like me, youíre probably reading this wondering WHAT IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS WHOLESOME IS HAPPENING TO THIS COUNTRY? -- James Poulos
Hat-tip: Instapundit
Posted by John Kranz at 3:01 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

LIKE

Posted by: johngalt at June 19, 2012 4:58 PM

Almost as if they were Biased...

This has been making the rounds. But a great friend of this blog (no, the other one) sends a link to the perfect package. Even if you've read about it and know the story, watch MSNBC Selectively Edits Romney Speech For Laughs

Beyond its example for media perfidy, I have to say I am deeply impressed with Governor Romney's speech and delivery. Maybe the primary picked the best candidate? Heresy?

UPDATE: WOW! Mrs. Greenspan sets the record straight... sortof...well, really not.

UPDATE II: WaWa Wizards Worthy of Wonderment!

The thing is, their touchscreen ordering system is a great example innovative tech in daily use. Itís a brilliant, relatively recent application of touch screen technology for custom food orders. Other stores may have something similar, but Iíve never seen one in common use anywhere other than WaWas. (My Shop Rite has something similar for ordering cold cuts.) I doubt very much Mitchell has either.

I'm still impressed by the panels, which work well under heavy use and are designed in such a way that technophobes can navigate them with ease. Theyíre adjustable, easy-to-read, and responsive. You can pick from a wide selection of condiments and toppings, and even choose the amount of mayo or olive oil, add bacon or extra cheese, choose to have it toasted, and order things on the side. Automating this element of the process also eliminates errors in orders and makes the entire process more efficient. Itís a good system. It must have been a risk for WaWa, and it deserves a shoutout.

Honestly? I get a little thrill every time I use it, but then again Iím a technonerd. I actually like Romney a bit more for showing this gee-whiz side of his usually robotic self. We should be amazed by amazing things. I like a man with a sense of wonder. When did wonder become a quality to be mocked?


Hat-tip: new blog friend @robert_pearson

Posted by John Kranz at 1:57 PM | Comments (0)

June 15, 2012

When You've Lost Dana Milbank...

WOAH! Dana Milbank, WaPo: Skip the falsehoods, Mr. President, and give us a plan

I had high hopes for President Obama's speech on the economy. But instead of going to Ohio on Thursday with a compelling plan for the future, the president gave Americans a falsehood wrapped in a fallacy.

The falsehood is that he has been serious about cutting government spending. The fallacy is that this election will be some sort of referendum that will break the logjam in Washington.


Milbank does not go on to endorse Gov. Romney or the Ryan Plan or 9-9-9 or anything. Republicans get some harsh words. Yet, none worse than these:
Of more concern is Obama's nonsensical claim that he has a deficit plan that would strengthen Medicare for the long haul. He has called for doubling Medicare spending over the next 10 years, to nearly $1 trillion in 2022. His cuts in the rate of growth amount to just a few percentage points. As The Post's Lori Montgomery has reported, the president's 2013 budget marked "the second year in a row Obama has ignored calls to restructure Social Security and Medicare entitlement programs."

Nothing in Obama's speech came close to a proposal to fix the debt problem; he dealt with that only at the end of the speech -- largely by complaining about Republicans' refusal to consider higher taxes on the wealthy.


Ow! That's gotta sting!

Hat-tip: Insty, in a collection of bad reviews.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:22 AM | Comments (0)

June 13, 2012

Et tu ABC?

I don't know Devin Dwer at ABC News, but I am not feeling the love for the President here.

BALTIMORE -- As some high-profile Democrats question the focus of his pitch for a second term, President Obama today stuck closely to his well-worn script, telling a group of 500 donors here that the economy is moving in the right direction and that his policies will accelerate the recovery.

Hat-tip; Jim Geraghty [subscribe]

Posted by John Kranz at 9:58 AM | Comments (0)

None Dare Call it Bias

'cept me.

Insty links to a The Hill story on a nutjob Democrat:

BROOKLYN, N.Y. -- Charles Barron calls Robert Mugabe and Moammar Gadhafi his "heroes." He compared Israel's government to the Nazis, says he won't salute the American flag, and once offered that he wanted to "slap" the nearest white person.

And come January, he could be central Brooklyn's newest congressman, if voters here give him an upset victory in the Democratic primary on June 26.


<ford_truck_guy_voice>It's free speech 101 baby, and I welcome the nutjob to the race.</ford_truck_guy_voice>

Yet it occurs that a similarly out-of-mainstream GOP candidate would be a big deal. Governor Romney would be forced to disavow him. And all my Facebook friends would post a NY Times story about him. But a crazy Democrat? Nothing to see here.

Posted by John Kranz at 9:07 AM | Comments (0)

June 9, 2012

Our Miss Margaret

A clever developer could attach to this blog's database of entries and graph my appreciation for Peggy Noonan. It would look a lot like a chart of FB on NASDAQ. I went all in an Noonan stock when I read her "What I Saw at the Revolution," a book I bought for a dozen people trying to explain who I had become during the Reagan Administration.

Her 9/11 book was moving; she was perhaps born to write it. Crosses, Hearts and Flags are her domain and her capacity to provide emotion without treacle is unmatched.

Then, if I may try hand at her style, the little elitist grace notes developed into dissident chords (okay, she does it better). And by the time she went-all-Obama-on-us I had stopped listening. I read her only occasionally now, but will give her a quote of the day for this:

President Obama's problem now isn't what Wisconsin did, it's how he looks each day--careening around, always in flight, a superfluous figure. No one even looks to him for leadership now. He doesn't go to Wisconsin, where the fight is. He goes to Sarah Jessica Parker's place, where the money is.

Nailed it Peggy. Nailed it.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:16 AM | Comments (0)

May 30, 2012

It's over -- I'm joining the Democrats!

HuffPo:

Mitt Romney iPhone App, 'With Mitt,' Misspells 'America'

MITT-ROMNEY-AMERCIA.jpg

How's he going to fix our nations problkems if he can't even tyep!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:23 PM | Comments (0)

May 25, 2012

Obama's "Vulture Capitalist" Campaign Co-Chair

At the Liberty on the Rocks Flatirons kickoff meeting last week I was urged to follow CompleteColorado.com for my news and not give another dime of money or attention to the Denver Post. Today the site proved the worth of that advice.

As I first heard on today's Rush Limbaugh program, Complete's Todd Shepherd broke the story about former Denver Mayor Federico Pena, currently a western US campaign co-chair for Obama 2012, who "has been a partner at private equity firm Vestar Capital since 2000." The significance, of course, is that Romney's Bain Capital background is, in the words of the president, "part of the debate that weíre going to be having in this election campaign."

Obviously I have nothing against "vulture" capitalists, but let's debate: Is it unacceptable for a corporate turnaround artist to be president of the United States but perfectly fine if he just shills for some useful idiot to hold the office on his behalf?

Complete closes with this:

If the President intends to make this election about Romney's record at Bain, then Mr. PeŮa and James Kelley must come clean about layoffs at Del Monte, Solo Cup Company, and Birdseye foods. If not, Mr. PeŮa might not be available to stand on the campaign stage with the President at his next Colorado rally.

That is, unless the Dominant Liberal Establishment Mass Media says he can.

(More on this story at Colorado Peak Politics blog.)

Posted by JohnGalt at 4:35 PM | Comments (0)

May 24, 2012

That's Gotta Sting.

Blog smackdowns are so childish. What are we in the third grade? I mean --

Tim Cavenaugh is murdering Andrew Sullivan! You'll want to read the whole thing> But my sense of fair play forces me to excerpt this for blog brother jg:

I'd like to take "soaring inflation" and "moribund economy" together: Sullivan posts two charts, one showing GDP growth averaging flat-or-flattish since 2007, and another showing inflation in every quarter except one. During that period, inflation has been a cumulative 10.97, according to a Koch-funded rightwing hate group called "the Bureau of Labor Statistics."

Posted by John Kranz at 4:09 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Hmmm, much as I'd like it to be otherwise I don't think I'd say Cavenaugh is answering Sullivan's claims very effectively. Yes, GDP growth is "flat or flattish since 2007" but according to the graph it hasn't been much better since 2000. And while I do believe inflation is soaring, it isn't reflected in the graph which shows inflation outpacing GDP growth all right but again, since 2000 and not merely since 2007 (or 2009).

It seems a better rebuttal would be the United States Consumer Confidence chart from the same source, along with the United States Government Debt to GDP

I did, however, quite enjoy the archived article he linked to show the "falsehood" of CPI inflation. After a bonus discussion of the chart I posted below, Cavanaugh mocked "Bernankeism"

"‚ÄĒto describe how endless currency creation and low interest rates produce inflationary bubbles. Not that you'd know about inflation if, instead of buying things you needed, you were studying the popular "core" CPI, which leaves out energy and food costs and bases its estimates on a cherry-picked basket of goods that tells us increasingly less about the well-being of Americans."


Posted by: johngalt at May 24, 2012 5:40 PM
But Bryan thinks:

I have to agree with Brother JG on this one. As much as I wish Cavanaugh were destroying Sullivan’s arguments, he is not. His arguments, while valid, against the way CPI and GDP data do not go far enough to address where Sullivan is wrong.

While nominal GDP growth for the period between 1-1-2007 to 1-1-2011 was 7.59%, real GDP growth for the same time period was .82%. In case you can‚Äôt see the decimal, that is 8 tenths of a percent growth in the economy in 4 years. The CPI numbers from the same time period show a growth in prices of 8.48%. Nearly all ‚Äúgrowth‚ÄĚ in the nominal GDP number has been the result of an increase in prices.

(I refuse to call that increase in prices inflation. The increase in prices is due to the growth of M2, during that same time period, by 26.88%. AKA: Inflation)

Sullivan‚Äôs claim that our economy has been ‚Äúmoribund‚ÄĚ for the last decade is also not entirely accurate. From 1-1-2000-1-1-2011 nominal GDP grew 51.68% while real GDP grew 18.71%. Ignoring the nominal number and focusing only on the real number paints a real clear picture. As I mentioned above, real GDP growth from 2007 through 2011 only grew at a rate of .82% where real GDP growth from 2000-2011 was 18.71%. This not exactly the "moribund economy" Sullivan argues we've had for a "long time.

Mr. Cavanaugh’s original claim regarding the economy and inflation are correct, but his defense of his positions leaves a little (specifically facts) to be desired. I, more than most, enjoy a debate regarding the failures of ANY price measuring mechanism to measure inflation and GDP, but in this instance I think it is a distraction.

H/T:Federal Reserve Economic Data (AKA FRED Database)

Posted by: Bryan at May 24, 2012 6:53 PM

May 22, 2012

That crease is not looking as sharp

Dear David Brooks, can't spell R-U-B-E without YOU!

The NYTimes idea of a conservative famously thought the crease in then Senator Obama's trousers signified that he was ready for some Article II work. Curiously, I don't recall Hamiltion mentioning pressing in Federalist 69, although there were some superb trouser jokes in "The Rutles."

Brooks is discontented, though. It seems private equity and capitalism have done more for this great nation than its best dry cleaners have:

While American companies operate in radically different ways than they did 40 years ago, the sheltered, government-dominated sectors of the economy -- especially education, health care and the welfare state -- operate in astonishingly similar ways.

The implicit argument of the Republican campaign is that Mitt Romney has the experience to extend this transformation into government.

The Obama campaign seems to be drifting willy-nilly into the opposite camp, arguing that the pressures brought to bear by the capital markets over the past few decades were not a good thing, offering no comparably sized agenda to reform the public sector.


Posted by John Kranz at 4:25 PM | Comments (0)

May 18, 2012

Another Reason to Drop NR

Quit for the Gay bashing, stay away for the general fuddyduddyness.

Rich Lowry is harshing the mellow on the day Zuckerberg's Friends & Family list made eleven cents a share!

Facebook has transformed oversharing from an annoying habit of the poorly socialized into the very stuff of daily interactions. No thought is too banal, no event too minor, no mood too passing, no photo too embarrassing to be posted on Facebook. One of the great self-regarding egotists of all time, the late author Norman Mailer, might have blanched at the unrelenting self-exposure of it.

For one, my Buffy sire Jonathan V Last owns this genre: hating social media is all things to him. Like Last, Lowry is entitled to his opinion. I'm not buying the stock, but I defend Facebook and Twitter from enemies foreign and domestic.

I know probably as many non-FB people as FB people (though in the swing states, they are trending toward Zuckerberg). The snobbishness of the anti crowd frequently surprises me. One relative slurps all this up on National Review and The Weekly Standard. "How can you be interested in what somebody's having for Lunch?" Well, I'm friends with your grand-daughter, she's vacationing in New York and she had lunch at ..." Still not interested?

I don't think it will eclipse the printing press, or fire, or Spanx® or anything, yet people on both sides take it too seriously. It's free, it keeps you in general contact with those whom you want at a closeness you dictate.

It is -- as a business -- vulnerable to fashion and does not deserve a P/E advantage over Apple or Google (I mentioned I wasn't buying...) Yet it enjoys a huge base, critical mass, and generally good branding to date. The deniers are missing something.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:43 PM | Comments (0)

April 26, 2012

A Troll?

I got a comment early this morning on a year old post. Commenter "never_to_return" who probably does not check his email at hjkhjkhjjk@hjkhjkhjk.com very often (I changed a few letters to protect his identity) questions my primacy in coining the term Status Quo-Bama.

I got excited, thinking we had finally found our own troll after nine years. But I don't know, it is difficult to gauge the commenter's intent.

Posted by John Kranz at 9:56 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

The Paul Street White House "savior"-

someone who will raise wages [egalitarian], roll back war and militarism [socialism], provide universal and adequate health care [communism], rebuild the nation's infrastructure [yeah, right], produce high-paying jobs [since money is worthless], fix the environmental crisis [where?], reduce inequality [egalitarian, again], guarantee economic security [everyone suffers equally, or, egalitarian, again], and generally make daily life more livable [I don't think that word means what you think it means].

This "utopian" shopping list can be expressed far more simply as a "Free Lunch."

Posted by: johngalt at April 26, 2012 2:19 PM
But johngalt thinks:

And at the original post I commented about who I think is more qualified to claim first use of Status Quo Bama, and why. (Hint: neither)

Posted by: johngalt at April 26, 2012 2:22 PM

April 14, 2012

Burning Question

William Jacobson -- like me -- enjoys intelligent dissent in ideas. But he points out that "It always ends badly." A heretofore polite left of center commenter finally lashes out:

It's too bad you're such a filthy liar, Professor. Who does pay you to lie for the GOP, and how much do you get paid?

I ask myself that every day. Where do I sign up? How much do I get? Is there Dental Insurance?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:27 AM | Comments (0)

April 2, 2012

Celebrate Diversity!

From the Pauline Kael files...

James Taranto brings a series of gobsmacked lefties, surprised that SCOTUS is taking the constitutionality of ObamaCare® seriously. This one was a jewel:

Chris Matthews, NBC: "Were you surprised that this was even a prospect? I was totally unprepared because of the way people talked. I never heard it discussed politically as a prospect, that they actually might get his [Obama] major achievement just ripped off the books. I have a broad section of friends and colleagues and not one of them saw this coming. Not my co-workers like Rachel Maddow, Ed Schultz, and Lawrence O'Donnell. My old boss Jimmy Carter? Not one of them thought the individual mandate could be ruled as anything but constitutional. I'm flabbergasted!"

Wow, seeking a diverse array of opinions, Matthews consults: "Rachel Maddow, Ed Schultz, Lawrence O'Donnell, and President Carter." He really did his homework

UPDATE: D'OH! Taranto and I fell for an April Fool's joke! ThreeSources apologizes for the lack of humor.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:32 PM | Comments (0)

March 30, 2012

Gov Haley Story Not True

One of my favorite Governors is being trashed by a false rumor:

COLUMBIA -- The Internal Revenue Service determined last fall that an investigation of the Sikh Religious Society where Gov. Nikki Haley's parents are leaders was not warranted, according to a letter the IRS provided the Governor's Office Friday.

"After further consideration of your organization, we have determined that an investigation is not warranted at this time for the above tax period," the letter states.

"We did not conduct an examination for the above period."


Clearly an example of anti-Sikh bigotry -- what century is this again? It couldn't be party affliation...

Posted by John Kranz at 6:50 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

... aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand the lie is halfway around the world. Where did we put those shoes?

52.8% of the voting population in her state will remember it - the lie, not the retraction. The point was never to tell the truth; the point was to damage. If you don't believe me, look at the number of people who still believe that Sarah Palin said she can see Russia from her house.

And it's true! I can see Russia right there. Next to that lie. The one that's halfway around the world.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at March 31, 2012 3:02 PM
But jk thinks:

President GHW Bush and the grocery scanner...

Posted by: jk at April 1, 2012 12:18 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Candidate Romney and the automobile elevator.

Posted by: johngalt at April 1, 2012 1:53 PM

March 21, 2012

Who wants to start a website?

VoteColorado.org

Provide your address and party registration, and we will look you up and provide a sample ballot for any upcoming elections, caucuses, or primaries. I think this part can all be done by interfacing with existing State websites.

Our value-add is to provide the digital equivalent of the old "League of Women Voters" booklets, linking to official campaign websites and providing a page to every candidate and side of a referendum that can be used to provide their "elevator talk." We could also embed YouTubes and podcasts of debates and forums.

I just filled out my Erie ballot: mayor, three trustees, and two ballot initiatives. As I've said on these pages, these votes will likely affect my life much more than my vote for Governor Romney or President Obama in November. Yet, I will spend years studying candidates and positions for national office. Where do I turn for local decisions?

The trustees do not run under party labels and do not have splashy campaign websites. I found a letter to the editor from one candidate who recommended a slate of three. As he stands behind the (überRepublican, I believe) Mayor, I am pretty confident. There is an odd ballot initiative I took a good guess on. But I would like to read a statement from each Trustee and hear both sides of the initiatives.

I suggest we fund it through advertising, but clearly delineate the paid portion from the news content. And, like credible media organizations, erect a "Chinese Wall" between revenue side and editorial. As we will not endorse candidates or anything, I don't see much room for impropriety -- though there could certainly be allegations and we need be careful to show fairness and transparency.

I think organizing as a non-profit would show good faith. It precludes us from selling out to Google for a billion bucks, but were we to grow into United-Way level salaries who cares? And it is a responsible, civic-minded enterprise to better the ideals of small-r republican government.

Who's in?

Posted by John Kranz at 11:51 AM | Comments (7)
But jk thinks:

I'd suggest that the print dailies had quite a run. And that a digital solution offers more: a long-tail storage scenario lets us provide far more information and the platform lets us deliver only what is relevant.

Ultimately, I think it is a great advertising platform for candidates, parties, think tanks, political magazines and the like. On the downside, upon success, there would be very little barrier of entry for a large organization.

But the "draw" is to do politics all day and get paid for it, instead of stealing goof-off cycles from work. Still no love?

Posted by: jk at March 22, 2012 5:15 PM
But Bryan thinks:

I like the idea a lot, however there are two "companies" already providing services such as these.

Complete Colorado
Colorado Peak Politics

In addition, you have the People's Press Collective which also has a lot of independent bloggers and journalists contributing on local issues.

I'd certainly be willing to sit down and talk about it more over some beers.

Posted by: Bryan at March 22, 2012 6:14 PM
But jk thinks:

I confess I had not heard of either. Peak advertises itself as Conservative in the tagline. I want to be completely objective, not offering any opinions on the site and bringing in some other-viewpointed folks to fend off accusations.

Complete Colorado aggregates news in a Drudge-esque package. I would like to look more governmental (bet you were not expecting me to say that!) specifically, a place to go to learn about candidates and issues. I have a ballot in my hand or I am planning to go vote next week and want to know what I will be voting on and why.

The value-adds are personalized information by district and info on down ticket candidates and local referenda. These seem difficult to acquire.

Beer good. I might opt for an Atkins-y scotch, but the idea has merit.

Posted by: jk at March 22, 2012 7:08 PM
But Bryan thinks:

JK -

I got my wires crossed there. I misread what you had said about the website in the original post.

My best friend is a city councilman in Broomfield. Perhaps he could point us towards a local politics information repository that is non-partisan.

I'll let you know what I find out.

Posted by: Bryan at March 22, 2012 7:31 PM
But jk thinks:

I know my wanting to something balanced and non-partisan was a stretch. I understand. Completely.

Posted by: jk at March 22, 2012 7:41 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Real Clear Politics, I think, strives to be non-partisan.

Posted by: johngalt at March 23, 2012 1:01 PM

March 9, 2012

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

James Taranto has forcefully and eloquently taken on the ridiculous "fact checker" sections of media. All any of them are is an extra opportunity to add bias. Piling on is probably not worth the ones and zeros, but...I am almost in tears over today's WaPo "Fact Check."

Obama's $8,000 in gas savings a year -- oops, over a car's life

It's a misstatement, so it gets the lightest sentence of "One Pinocchio." Fair enough, we all make mistakes. Asserting, in front of a cheering crowd, that the 20-26 year savings "over the life of the car" is annual savings seems like a large one, but I am all smiles and compassion today. The crowd was assured that there would be no math, but $8000 a year is $21.92 a day. What will you buy with your savings? If you bought five big SUVs, you could save $100 every day!

Okay, so I am more smiles than compassion. But assuming that is still a mono-pinocchial offense, the fact check goes on to show additional perfidy.

When Obama does say this talking point correctly, note the careful wording -- "$8,000 at the pump over time." He's talking about the savings on gasoline, the happy part of the story. But he has left out part of the total picture -- the costs of compliance with the new rules.

The standards are coming in two phases. The first, which affects cars in model years 2012-2016, will increase the average cost of model 2016 car about $950, while saving $4,000 in fuel, according to government estimates. So the net savings is about $3,000. The second set of standards, which affects cars in model years 2017-2025, will add $2,200 to the cost of a model 2025 car, while reducing fuel costs by $6,600, for a net lifetime savings of $4,400. (Gasoline is presumed to cost about $3.42 before taxes.)


There's "a complicated method" to get to $8,000 fuel savings:
  • If you disregard the cost
  • On a rule that kicks in in five years
  • That Kessler does not even document

Is anybody else's b******t detector going off? Glenn Kessler -- who does this for a living -- is prepared to forgive every sin except multiplying by 26?

Read the article six times, and you'll encounter no suggestion that the President nor his policies are not saving a gorram dime for nobody. You choose to buy the car you buy (unless he gets a second term) and factor in the mileage as part of your decision.

How many will put off buying a new, more efficient vehicle because of the $6600 addition to the sticker price? (Hey, if he can use 2017-2025 figures, so can I!) That's a side of CAFE that gets way too little attention.

MAD Magazine had a "What's wrong with this picture?" spoof where there were obviously many things amiss. The answer was "The headline: This was supposed to be the 'What 1,000 things are wrong with this picture?' picture." In reverse, there are a thousand things wrong with the President's claim to be saving his unquestioning minions eight grand a year. Kessler finds one.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:34 PM | Comments (0)

March 4, 2012

Be Breitbart

Love the blogosphere sometimes: Be Breitbart.

The greatest tribute to one of the fallen since Eric Clapton's guitar solo on "Holy Mother" (for The Band's Richard Manuel).

Posted by John Kranz at 11:42 AM | Comments (0)

March 3, 2012

Whither Rush?

Time for a quick gloat. I watched Rush Limbaugh's TV show for a while in the mid 90's, but have stayed away ever since. I suggest that his bombast elevates his career more than the ideas he espouses. I file him away with Ann Coulter, with whom I sometimes agree but get very weary of defending.

Not being a listener, I heard about "Slut-gate" on the street from Gov. Howard Dean on Kudlow. Dean may or may not be successful painting the entire GOP with Limbaugh's comments -- but it ain't going to help.

Don Surber eloquently asks Rush to apologize, comparing the incident to David Letterman's harsh words to Bristol Palin.

I will pre-concede that the left does have their panties in a bunch (panties and slut -- our Google® rankings are headed north!) I can't accept this as Breitbartian courage. Any of his fans wish to offer a defense?

UPDATE: On the other hand...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:26 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Before I had a chance to investigate whether the statements were defensible, Rush apologized on Saturday. He seems to have been imprecise about whether Ms. birth-control-activist's claim of $1000 annual birth control tab was reflective of a birth control method whose cost was per use or per day. It turned out to be the former, making him look both priggish and foolish.

Rush was wrong. He made a mistake. He is human. And yet, Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann, among other conservative women, are wondering when their respective apologies will be delivered.

Posted by: johngalt at March 5, 2012 3:42 PM

March 2, 2012

Quote of the Day

This is not to say that Andrew [Breitbart] was beyond criticism. He made mistakes. He took full swings at some pitches he should have just let go. He overstated some things that needed to be said, and said some things that didn't need to be said at all. He was a human run-on sentence who showed deference to no punctuation mark save the exclamation point, a conservative Tasmanian Devil from the Bugs Bunny cartoons we both grew up on, whirling and whizzing through anything in his path. Giving him a dose of Ritalin to treat his hyperactivity would be like throwing a glass of water on a five-alarm fire. -- Jonah Goldberg
Posted by John Kranz at 1:09 PM | Comments (0)

March 1, 2012

Welcome Bryan!

Great news! We have recruited another "brother" to ThreeSources. Bryan makes his debut today with a smart piece about the primary race.

For you set theory folks: not only does the blogger count increment, but the group "my economic betters" does as well. Bryan has an Economics degree from the University of Colorado. We'll drag him into lengthy discussions on monetary policy and central banking and -- oh NED, I do hope he has some ANNA NICOLE SMITH PHOTOS.

Welcome aboard, Brother Bryan!

Posted by John Kranz at 3:29 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Welcome, Bryan - and pleased to see your expertise in the dismal science carries over to the political realm, if the last two paragraphs in your debut piece are any indication of your acumen. I look forward to seeing more -

Posted by: Keith Arnold at March 1, 2012 6:41 PM
But Bryan thinks:

@ JK and Keith -

Thank you for the welcome and kind words. I look forward to being part of the community!

Posted by: Bryan at March 2, 2012 10:42 AM

February 29, 2012

jk Very Competitive in MLB Pitching

I have learned a great trick from CNN. To mislead their viewers and advance a high-tax agenda compare US corporate tax rates with other developed nations, they showed this handy chart:


Indeed, CNN host Soledad O'Brien said to guest Jack Welch, "But when I look at the corporate tax rates around the world, we have a little graphic of this, I'll throw it up. We see United States is at 35%, France is at 34%, Belgium at 33%, Spain at 30%, Japan at 30%, Mexico at 30%. It sounds like we're kind of competitive, right?"

So I have compiled this handy graphic. It seems as if I am among the five greatest pitchers in MLB history:

Numbers don't lie.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:24 PM | Comments (1)
But dagny thinks:

ROTFL

Posted by: dagny at February 29, 2012 3:08 PM

February 28, 2012

What's the matter with Minnesota?

The clever folks at the New York Times have discovered some grotesque hypocrisy among the Tea Party crowd. Only they have not.

It seems that Ki Gulbranson of Lindstrom, Minnesota is a Tea Partier.

He says that too many Americans lean on taxpayers rather than living within their means. He supports politicians who promise to cut government spending. In 2010, he printed T-shirts for the Tea Party campaign of a neighbor, Chip Cravaack, who ousted this region's long-serving Democratic congressman.

But the intrepid NYTimes reporters turn up his dirty little secret and it is their fiduciary duty as professional reporters to share it with paying subscribers:
Yet this year, as in each of the past three years, Mr. Gulbranson, 57, is counting on a payment of several thousand dollars from the federal government, a subsidy for working families called the earned-income tax credit. He has signed up his three school-age children to eat free breakfast and lunch at federal expense. And Medicare paid for his mother, 88, to have hip surgery twice.

Sorry, Mom, suffer -- I'm a Libertarian!

I have two large complaints with the article and one about the carb count of lo-carb tortillas. First, they lump in Social Security and Medicare, which are pretty much mandatory; Veteran's Benefits, which nobody has begrudged since President Cleveland; and Unemployment Insurance which is subsidized but considered by most a State program funded by premiums. So the Times is uncomfortable when Republicans oppose a program in which they are forced to participate.

Second, you can oppose a program and take the money. I closed on my refi last week (thanks, dagny!) I think it is insanely stupid and would have gladly chosen to cancel the program before it started. But I did not eschew participation or seriously consider it. Call me names but my mysterious $2500 credit on closing costs would not have gone to reduce the debt. If a snooty NYTimes reporter wants to write me up, he may -- just make sure I get a good photo.

The story is not lack of purity in the Tea Party. The story is, as Walter Russell Meade reports, that Huey Long was right: "If you aren't getting something for nothing, you aren't getting your fair share."

More and more Americans seem to be buying into that logic. According to this piece in the New York Times (with accompanying interactive map), the share of government benefits in personal income has doubled over the past four decades and now constitutes close to 18 percent of all personal income in America.

Liberty balances on a knife edge. I don't blame Ki Gulbranson.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:19 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

He probably drives on federal interstate highways too. Ingrate!

The point of the article, it seems to me, is to anesthetize as many voters as possible against what I'll dub, 'TEA Party Fever.' "It's okay, neighbor" you can imagine the author saying, "just keep taking this blue pill and everything will be fine. There, doesn't that feel nice?"

After all, "Seventy percent of respondents to a recent New York Times poll said the government should raise taxes."

Posted by: johngalt at February 28, 2012 3:31 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Heh. Or do they?

Three-quarters of likely voters believe the nation's top earners should pay lower, not higher, tax rates, according to a new poll for The Hill.

(...)
The new data seem to run counter to several polls that have found support for raising taxes on high-income earners.


Posted by: johngalt at February 28, 2012 4:39 PM

February 20, 2012

Google never sleeps

Page-top banner ad from the Reason article about Nick Gilespie and Ann Coulter's fiscal/social conservative debate.


Posted by JohnGalt at 12:12 PM | Comments (0)

I Feel a Great Disturbance in the Force

As if thousands I follow suddenly spoke up and were silenced...


Posted by John Kranz at 10:51 AM | Comments (0)

February 16, 2012

Occam's Razor

I love a good media bashing. But I hate a conspiracy theory. This internal dichotomy leaves me torn on George Stephanopoulos's grilling Governor Romney on contraception. I'm rent in frickken' twain, people.

Nah. I am going to defend Stephanopoulos.

ThreeSources fave, Paul Rahe, mentions it in a superb piece on l'Affair Abortificient

The decision appears to have been made before the New Hampshire primary. Otherwise, it would be hard to explain why, at the debate in New Hampshire in early January, George Stephanopoulos -- who pretends to be a journalist but is still obviously nothing more than a Democratic operative -- repeatedly pressed Mitt Romney to spell out where he stood on the question of contraception. Stephanopoulos' disgraceful performance, which drew boos and catcalls from the crowd, is an indication that Obama and at least some of his aides thought that they had something to gain by injecting this question into this year's campaign.

With all respect, Professor, I watched that debate and while it was stupid, I don't think it is otherwise inexplicable. I heard it in the context of Griswold v. Connecticut. Am I mad? I have heard several smart people assert that this was what Rahe claims. But the question was whether a State could outlaw contraception: the heart of Griswold.

It is a pretty serious accusation to take the other side. And, again, I love accusing Stephanopoulos. But I'd need to see more smoke in the gun.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:48 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Yeahbut, as conspiracies go this one is not exactly Machiavellian. Stephanopolous' role as the virtual creator of Clinton's rapid-response "War Room" spin machine helped convince me it was a setup. And does the fact that Dems have a name for this strategy - The Colorado Model (from my second link at the referenced comment) - not serve to prove that they do this stuff intentionally?

Posted by: johngalt at February 16, 2012 3:07 PM
But jk thinks:

I told you I had heard it from smart people.

Thanks, I missed the linked article last time and it is very good. But I think I agree with you and still hold to my original point. The semi-retired Clintonista (like Marines, there are no ex-Clintonistas) was certainly trying to paint Romney as 'extreme" for opposing Griswold.

That's an admittedly crappy thing for a debate moderator to pull, but the blood has been dry on that contract for some time. What it is not is proof of collusion with the current White House as "battlespace preparation" for the ObamaCare ruling on contraception.

Posted by: jk at February 16, 2012 4:35 PM

February 15, 2012

Badge of Honor

The lovely bride found this on Facebook:


Posted by John Kranz at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

February 13, 2012

Aspirations.

We should aim for inclusion on the Nixon White-House Media Matters Enemies list.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:37 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

All of us are already terrorists, according to the Department of Homeland Security:

http://reason.com/terroristquiz

I'm going to have to resume blogging to get onto the Media Matters list as well. Gotta get 'em all!

Posted by: Keith Arnold at February 13, 2012 3:31 PM
But jk thinks:

There is much power on the Dark Side, Luke. Consider a ThreeSources Login...

Posted by: jk at February 13, 2012 3:54 PM

Ooops.

Anybody can make a typo or a small error, even the benighted Wall Street Journal.

They put the subhead for one story under the headline of another. I found it humorous:

I know, I should get out more...

Posted by John Kranz at 12:38 PM | Comments (0)

February 8, 2012

#COcaucus Selcted Tweets

denverpost The Denver Post
With 100% reporting, Santorum wins #COcaucus with 40.2%; Romney 34.9%; Gingrich 12.7%, Paul 11.7% http://dpo.st/y6DdWi
11 minutes ago Favorite Retweet Reply

KyleClark Kyle Clark
Well, it's official. The conservative grassroots told the CO GOP where to stick it. #cocaucus

EliStokols Eli Stokols
Santorum sweep is as devastating a setback to Romney as any suffered by a candidate thus far. High expectations, totally unmet in #COcaucus

HuffingtonPost Huffington Post
Paul: "We should have a right to keep the fruits of all our labors" #cocaucus #mncaucus #moprimary

BrandonRittiman Brandon Rittiman
Turnout in #COcaucus on track to be slightly less than the 70k who turned out in '08. Less than 9% of reg'd GOP voters.

Alex_Shrugged Alex Johnson
@anneherbst RT @denverpost: WATCH: Romney gets glitter bombed at watch party in Denver (VIDEO): http://dpo.st/xsunHn #COcaucus #Colorado

NARALColorado NARAL Colorado
#Santorum contradicts #Colorado values! http://www.prochoicecolorado.org/news/press/201202071.shtml #CoPols #CoCaucus

Posted by JohnGalt at 1:38 AM | Comments (1)
But nanobrewer thinks:

So what's the total delegate count so far?
MR 94
RS 71
NG 29
RP 8
Huntsman! 2

A long way to go to 1144... shewt, bag on the CO caucus, I want to vote in the Marianas! Any way you look at it (Mitt's, Rick's or Newt's), we're going to need the Ryan's, Barbour's, and the Christie's to lead the "idea parade."

Posted by: nanobrewer at February 9, 2012 11:33 PM

February 5, 2012

Don't Politicize the Super Bowl!

While you're waiting for kickoff, read Nick Gillespie's hilarious and somehow sweet column on American sports.

To be fair, it's not only the right that tries to claim certain games or even athletics writ large for its side. The Nation devoted a whole issue last year to sports, with the unappetizing subtitle, "Views from Left Field," and featuring such ripped-from-the-Comintern-headlines as "Class Struggle on the Court" and "Revolution on Eight Wheels: Roller Derby marries an underground vibe with the fun of athletic competition" (as if we needed another pinko take on roller derby after Raquel Welch's epic Kansas City Bomber, easily the agit-prop equal of anything Eisenstein churned out).

Better that the pre-game show -- guaranteed.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:14 PM | Comments (0)

February 3, 2012

Colorado Weather Update

Non-Centennial-Staters may or may not have noticed, but a plan is afoot to gather a quorum of ThreeSourcers to attend a Weld County GOP event this Saturday. It will be the first corporeal meeting of many of us, and I have been looking forward to it.

Here is the first half of the 17" my area is predicted to accumulate. The very Gods themselves fear our confederacy!


Posted by John Kranz at 10:03 AM | Comments (4)
But jk thinks:

Insty: AT AMAZON, Top Deals in Patio & Garden.

Thanks, Glenn!

Posted by: jk at February 3, 2012 11:54 AM
But Terri thinks:

Be afraid , be very afraid.

Posted by: Terri at February 3, 2012 1:31 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The Refugee's boy scout camping trip was canceled due to 36" of snow in Golden Gate Canyon State Park. Apparently, one cannot get around even on snowshoes.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 3, 2012 3:34 PM
But jk thinks:

There are 15 hours left, and a guy who walks like me should be cautious when tempting fate.

BUT -- I think it might be overblown. My bro-in-law got a call to provide the network with footage of devastation and urban paralysis. He drove around and saw "wet streets."

Posted by: jk at February 3, 2012 3:46 PM

February 1, 2012

Wow! That was Fast.

I certainly enjoyed the appreciation for innovation that shone ever so briefly in the wake of Steve Jobs's death.

Wasn't that awesome? Lefties, moderates, and wingnuts all celebrated the cool things Apple wrought, the prosperity, the freedom, the benefits to other industries like music. One corporation, it seemed, was -- dare one say -- cool. As the Hollies Youngbloods said "just a moment's sunlight, fading on the grass."

Memo: Jobs's corpse is cold and Apple is no longer cool. Two NYTimes stories in a week reveal that anyone who appreciates the greedy corporate conglomerate was caught in Jobs's famous "Reality Distortion Field." As I mentioned, Paul Krugman led the charge last week. Apple didn't really create any jobs in the US (those Apple products unload, sell, and compose software themselves). Not like the GM bailout! Now that was a little-j jobs machine!

Today my niece (no, not that one -- I have nine) posts this NYTimes News story to Facebook, with the caption "Yikes. The hidden costs of our addiction to technology..."

In the last decade, Apple has become one of the mightiest, richest and most successful companies in the world, in part by mastering global manufacturing. Apple and its high-technology peers -- as well as dozens of other American industries -- have achieved a pace of innovation nearly unmatched in modern history.

However, the workers assembling iPhones, iPads and other devices often labor in harsh conditions, according to employees inside those plants, worker advocates and documents published by companies themselves. Problems are as varied as onerous work environments and serious -- sometimes deadly -- safety problems.


Sweatshops! It's like Lochner v New York never happened over there.

I provided some gentle avuncular wisdom in this instance (that was actually pretty well received). But clearly the word is out. The shine is off AAPL.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:05 PM | Comments (0)

January 30, 2012

Dad would be proud

One of the greatest concerts of my life was Arlo Guthrie up at Red Rocks. He is a gifted showman/storyteller who entertains with just the right amount of political bite. Nor am I at all certain his bite matches Papa Woody's doctrinaire Communism. All the jazz and blues greats I have been privileged to see, I remember Arlo Guthrie most vividly.

Submitted for your approval -- Arlo Guthrie "I'm Changing my Name to Fannie Mae:"

Hat-tip: CATO

Posted by John Kranz at 11:23 AM | Comments (0)

January 21, 2012

"When the Horse Dies, Dismount"

It's primary election day in South Carolina so I write this not to lobby for a candidate, but to defend his character and that of millions of men who, like him, experienced divorce from a wife.

This issue is a minefield of conflicting opinions and values but I think all would agree that people who divorce, more often than not, disagree on the root cause. As Taranto summarizes, Marianne told Brian Ross (with prompting) "Oh, he was asking to have an open marriage and I refused." Taken with her claim that he first asked for a divorce Taranto sees an important distinction:

In either case, there is an enormous difference between offering such an arrangement as a "compromise" to a spouse who does not wish to divorce, which is what Mr. Gingrich appears to have done, and flat-out asking for an open marriage.

This was my surmise even before reading of the details. "When she refused to divorce he probably said something like, 'What, do you just want to continue a marriage in name only?" He was determined not to be kept in servitude to a marriage that had died 12 years earlier. Taranto continues:

There is also evidence that the Gingriches' marriage had been troubled for years before the split. National Review's Robert Costa notes a 1999 Associated Press report on their separation, which revealed some background:

Documents related to the divorce filed Friday in Cobb County Superior Court include a separation agreement signed by the couple and notarized in December 1987. There is no indication it was ever filed.

Browning said Marianne Gingrich called her husband on his birthday in June 1987 to tell him she was leaving him. Gingrich, he said, came back to Georgia to find his home emptied out.
Browning said the pair maintained separate residences for six years before reconciling in late 1993 or early 1994.

There's no way to know who was at fault in the first separation, and while it is not in dispute that Mr. Gingrich committed adultery before the actual divorce, the 1987 story leads one to wonder if he was completely to blame for the ultimate breakup.

Newt and Marriane reportedly married in 1981 and just six years later, Marianne moved out taking everything but a television and a guest bed. In retrospect I'm sure Newt regrets not finalizing a legal split with his estranged wife in less than the 12 years it ultimately took, but only a bitter shrew would maintain that he owed any matrimonial duty to her during that time.

And what of the 6 years they were married? It's apparent to me it was a bad match from the beginning. If either is guilty of anything it is first and foremost poor judgment in marrying to begin with.

Now can we get back to the 100% of GDP national debt, economy-wrecking taxation and regulation, evisceration of our military and national security secrets and Euro-socialization of American society? By all accounts Newt, Mitt, Rick, Ron, Rick, Jon, Michele, Gary, Herman and Tim are all now happily married. Thank you very much.

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:44 AM | Comments (3)
But nanobrewer thinks:

I am happy to see SC voters not take the 'treat' offered by ABC, tho' as you all have figured out I disagree with their choice (perhaps I can view it as a bitch-slap to the MSM?).

Here's why: character. I don't fault Newt for divorce 1 or 2, but note that I grant credit to those who make sound choices that don't require annulment. I agree with Taranto that Marianne's allegations weren't sordid or defaming. What was defaming was Newt's response: calling her a liar and to shut up (brother JG will correct me if I cited the record poorly). Didn't he tearfully claim to have done her wrong and beg for forgiveness once upon a time?

#2: anybody remember when his entire campaign staff quit? How many successful presidents suffer mass resignations?
#3: lobbyist-cum consultant for Fan/Fred
#4: lack of endorsements from the people with whom he enacted the Contract with America... have any former congressmen or women endorsed him?

@JK "The real battle now turns to the Senate. If we can send a few more Tea Party GOP Senators"

Yup, and a bumbling, shrill, (heh, I can add "two-timing") scold will not aid this. Newt is not the leader anymore. While I was interested and intrigued as to what sort of policy and platform changes the Huntsman and/or Paul delegates might have gotten from a Romney-elect, I shudder to think what Newt would ask for.... I really do.

JK: don't forget Rand Paul! He'd be one of my top picks for VP, if anyone asked....

Posted by: nanobrewer at January 21, 2012 10:22 PM
But jk thinks:

Called that one Last October and would lose my mind with delight if it happened.

Not really betting on it mind you...

Posted by: jk at January 22, 2012 11:22 AM
But johngalt thinks:

"May he who is without divorce cast the first stone."

The response I heard, from Newt's own lips, was "The story is false." I'd like to see the citation where he told her to "shut up" and said she is a "liar." That would be newsworthy, I'd think.

South Carolina voters had every opportunity to take the more upstanding non-Romney in Santorum instead of Newt. Rick was, in fact, almost banking it. They made Rick an also ran./a> I wonder why?

Gingrich's past sins ‚Äď his ethics charges, $1.6 million in controversial payments from the bankrupted Freddie Mac, his affairs and marriages ‚Äď bothered Catherine Inman, a 40-year-old technology coordinator at a software company in Columbia.

That is why Inman first chose former Sen. Rick Santorum, who finished third in Saturday's primary, ahead of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul.

"And then, because I just don't think (Santorum) has a chance, I went to the one who I thought had the most intelligence about just America in general and what we are going through, and that's why I chose Newt. So I just kind of had to let that go," Inman said.

I really would rather support Romney. He seems a truly good guy. But did you see his SC concession speech? Jeesh.

Posted by: johngalt at January 22, 2012 7:03 PM

January 19, 2012

He said, she said

Or did she? ABC News "Exclusive" shock headline: Gingrich Lacks Moral Character to Be President, Ex-Wife Says is not supported by said ex-wife's words. At least not in the article that carries the headline.

The reader can be forgiven if he concludes that the "lacks moral character to be president" opinion belongs to ABC News, and not to Marianne Gingrich who "In her most provocative comments" ... "said Newt sought an "open marriage" arrangement so he could have a mistress and a wife."

Yes, that's provocative. Don't see the words president, character, or moral. Read into straight news reports much ABC? I propose that ABC's claim in Marianne's own words would have been much more provocative than this.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:49 PM | Comments (0)

January 17, 2012

Quote of the Day

(The audience sounded as if they did whiskey shots during the commercial breaks. Newt would begin, "Frankly, I believe that fundamental reform requires . . . " and then you would hear, "WHOOOOO! FRANKLY! FUNDAMENTALLY! WHOOOO!") -- Mark Geraghty
I'll add: no buzzers == best debate. Jeeburz, it might take a guy 45 seconds to explain his position on the peace of westphalia instead of 60. Other than Bret Baier whining about it, I thought it was perfect.
Posted by John Kranz at 11:14 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Not laughing at the quote. I find it unfairly dismissive and an attempt to distract from the intense connection Newt made with these "NASCAR Retards." Sure a contingent of them booed that Mitt's father was born in Mexico, but their standing ovations were reserved for one of the candidates telling his smug interlocutor "No, it is not racially insensitive to promote jobs over food stamps."

I've taken a closer look at Ron Paul and can't take him home to mamma. I was ready to acqueisce to Romney in the name of unity and a temperate judgement. And I've even dismissed Gingrich as ever being worthy of my caucus support. But I'm now putting him back on the list.

I crossed him off for poor tactics more than bad ideas but he does have some bad ideas. Fortunately he also has some good ideas and is a damned powerful orator. Given the choice I would rather see a brighter and sharper contrast to the sitting president. "Temperate judgement" and "don't rock the boat" aren't as likely to unseat Obama and the October Surprise in his hip pocket.

And remember the Art Laffer endorsement voice of McLaughlin.

Posted by: johngalt at January 17, 2012 3:29 PM
But jk thinks:

The crowd was pretty well juiced without him -- I elect to laugh.

Yes, the Speaker was very good in the debate. And I completely and fundamentally* agree that he is entitled to a revisit. To tie another thread, he might be a great candidate to lose with. I cannot yet inure to the former Governor if The Commonwealth. I will vote for him in November if he is the nominee, but I find myself longing for Bob Dole and John McCain more every day...

My Dealbreaker was weeks after your Dr. Laffer endorsement. It still seems insurmountable.

* If Speaker G wins, we will all have to use two adverbs in every sentence.

Posted by: jk at January 17, 2012 3:51 PM

January 16, 2012

Newsweek

I did the screengrab just to capture it. In the "Why Are Obama's Critics So Dumb?" issue of Newsweek, ("Garsh! I dunno...") we are treated to an insightful piece about Senator Santorum's wife who, before she met his sweatervestness -- and I hope y'all are sitting down -- dated an abortion provider.

Hat-tip: Jonah Goldberg (@JonahNRO) who reminds that Kerry's war record and Jeremiah Wright were out of bounds.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:46 PM | Comments (0)

January 11, 2012

The cold dark heart of the Left.

David Corn in Mother Jones. Move on jk, nothing to see here...

Too late. Gov. Jon Huntsman says:

Well, an example would be that when given the first two years to lead out on the economy, he failed to do so. When given a chance to address Afghanistan--drawing down troops when we've done everything we can do--he has failed to do so. When he had an opportunity to embrace a bipartisan deficit spending proposal called Simpson-Bowles, it hit the garbage can. You get enough of these, and a kind of a pathology emerges here. People say, there's no more trust in the executive branch. There was an opportunity to lead, and it wasn't taken.

David Corn hears:
Was the former Utah governor calling Obama pathological--as in pathological liar (the common usage)? It sure seems close.

I take Corn's complaint as a blatant defamation of Huntsman's Mormonism. "Utah Governor!" Notice how he had to slip that in? And if you take every 19th character in the article, you get...

Posted by John Kranz at 3:44 PM | Comments (0)

January 9, 2012

How many layers of tinfoil make a good hat?

Ask any young person and you'll be told that as you get older you (tend to) get more cynical. Perhaps it's a fair cop, guv. I think it is certain that one gets more skeptical - perhaps the gold prize is to acquire skepticism without cynicism.

Because there's a damned lot about which to be skeptical!

Andrew Ferguson has an awesome article in The Weekly Standard, lovingly titled "The Chump Effect."

Entire journalistic enterprises, whole books from cover to cover, would simply collapse into dust if even a smidgen of skepticism were summoned whenever we read that "scientists say" or "a new study finds" or "research shows" or "data suggest." Most such claims of social science, we would soon find, fall into one of three categories: the trivial, the dubious, or the flatly untrue.

I use the tinfoil hat title and mention cynicism because I am seriously concerned with both the frequency and amplitude of my heterodoxy. Even people who like me dismiss my thoughts on liberty because "he doesn't even believe in global warming!" I only tell my closest friends -- and the Internet -- that I don't believe oil comes from dead dinosaurs. I scoff at the Keynesian multiplier, Hegelian didactics, almost everything I see on teevee news, and now -- thanks to Gary Taubes -- all that is holy and sacred in dietary advice.

If you're on Facebook and have one friend who is not in Club for Growth, you've probably seen a picture of a woman who, 99% style, holds up a handwritten note with her life story. She is 34, doesn't get heath insurance at work, and now has cancer. Thanks to President Obama and the Affordable Crappy Care Act®, she is able to sign up for insurance. Ain't life grand.

My brother and two of my friends have posted this. I have made comments about right to contract, the blessings of liberty, and the suggestion that we could help people without outlawing insurance and redesigning 16% of the economy (obviously I want this poor woman to die of cancer). After all the democratic imposters over the years whose tearful plights have withered under scrutiny, I wonder a) if the woman has any health problems at all; b) what things did a working, 34-year-old prioritize over health insurance; and c) what is this job and how much does she make?

Two layers of tinfoil make a pretty nice capacitor -- you could charge your iPod from the government's rays.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:26 PM | Comments (7)
But dagny thinks:

The FB friend that I saw post this included the comment that, "this makes it oh so clear..." Funny I disagree. I have more questions to add to JK's list. Who does she think paid for the care she received? Are the doctors and nurses expected to work for free? Are her neighbors and co-workers expected to pay? If she embezzled the money from her company to pay for the surgery, she would be in jail, but if the government steals it for her from the same company, somehow that is moral?

P.S. This showed up on my Facebook page beneath a plea stating, "Let's work hard to make 2012 the year in which corporations are stripped of the legal personhood that makes it legal for them to buy election and politicians." It was accompanied by a poster saying, "I will believe corporations are people when Texas executes one."

P.P.S. I don't have the guts to post this reply on FB. It will have to stay here with the 3srces choir.

Posted by: dagny at January 9, 2012 7:40 PM
But jk thinks:

Maaah-Maaay-Meeeeee-Mooooo-Myooooou... Welcome to choir practice!

I posted very moderate responses. I have seen each that you list but never together -- my word you're tough!

It's funny because I endure mounds of completely out there lefty stuff, and normally roll-eyes and continue. Yet when I post a thoughtful piece from AEI or WSJ, I am some kind of crank.

Posted by: jk at January 9, 2012 8:43 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Here's a thought: Maybe we should all try being less reasonable and more vitriolic, condescending and dismissive in our treatment of FB friends. Hey, it seems to work for them!

Posted by: johngalt at January 10, 2012 12:59 AM
But jk thinks:

Maybe. Pig. Sing.

Really, at the end of the day they don't appreciate reason. I suspect they won't like rough treatment either. This is the conversation at our dinner table three times a week. How do you reach those people?

Posted by: jk at January 10, 2012 12:50 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Try, "Ha ha ha. That's funny!"

What's funny?

"That you still believe _______."

Well, everyone knows _______.

"Yeah, and everyone knew Pittsburgh would beat the Broncos too. Wouldn't life be boring if it really was all predetermined like the smarties on TV like to say it is?"

Oh please, that's just a football game.

"Alright, please tell me which group or groups of people are heretofore certified never to be wrong ever again. Sportscasters? Scientists? Anyone? Pshaw!"

Posted by: johngalt at January 10, 2012 1:55 PM
But dagny thinks:

They don't appreciate reality much either. At the end of the day, if those of us who are rational cannot turn the ship around, reality will smack them in the face. Check your ammunition supply (cynical I know).

Posted by: dagny at January 10, 2012 2:02 PM

January 4, 2012

Headline of the Day

Beware the frappucinos of hate.-- Instapundit
Posted by John Kranz at 11:24 AM | Comments (0)

December 27, 2011

The End of a Great Blog

I thank those of you who have enjoyed this blog. I fear it may never be the same as I plan to mention Kim Kardashian. There. I did it. Turn out the lights.

One hears of Ms. K all the time, but I prided myself on the little piece of snobbery that I did not know who she was. A month ago, I saw an attractive exotic figure on a magazine cover and inquired "who's that?" Virginity ends so abruptly sometimes...

Bill McGurn sullies the WSJ Ed Page by discussing the pop icon under the rubric of taxation. Some Golden-staters are ready to forgive her promiscuity -- but not her profitability:

The organization is called Courage Campaign and its website reveals it to be a California mťlange of activist groups and labor unions. In a video that presents Ms. Kardashian in some of her more conspicuously consumptive moments, Courage Campaign claims that while Ms. Kardashian made more than $12 million in 2010, she paid only one percentage point more in taxes (10.3%) than a middle-class Californian (9.3%).

I'm not posting a photo (the WSJ's is modest and not especially flattering), but I am linking. Because, yesterday's announcement that good looks were as valuable as a college degree clearly shows that it is time to institute the hotness tax. Clearly, Kim and I will have to pay our share based on the additional abundance our winsomeness has provided. It's a fair cop, guv.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:50 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Best McGurn line - "It says much about the progressive Puritanism of our age that what these folks really find most sleazy about Ms. Kardashian is not her sex tape or her marriage, but that she's unembarrassed about making money."

First Michelle Obama, and now Kim Kardashian. Quick, somebody tweet #Occupy!

Posted by: johngalt at December 27, 2011 3:38 PM

December 20, 2011

The Other Side to the Story.

Lest we be tagged unfair, here is the pro-totalitarian side of the story. From The Guardian, of course:

Václav Havel: another side to the story: The Czech leader was a brave man, but the voices of those who lost out after communism's demise are seldom heard
[...]
A 2011 OECD report found that Havel's Czech Republic had the joint-second largest rise in income inequality in OECD members since the mid-1980s

Boo freakin' hooo! Leave it to the folks at The Guardian to long for the equality of Soviet Czechoslovakia.

co-Hat-tip: @JimPethokoukis and @radleybalko

Posted by John Kranz at 2:50 PM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2011

Damn!

Professor Reynolds totally scooped me on the fancy East Tennessee cheeses thing. I was gong to do a nice write-up and BANG! he's already got it.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:37 PM | Comments (0)

December 17, 2011

Churlish!

Jim Treacher institutes a caption contest for the Obama's Christmas Photo. (And starts it off with the humorous "But I do think, at a certain point, you've got enough presents.")

But I think it is a charming picture and will set aside my fulsome disagreement with all of the President's economic policies to salute his darling children and revel that my life has seen the progress from segregated drinking fountains to an African American President. Yes, I wish it had been Secretary Rice, but Merry Christmas.


Posted by John Kranz at 1:04 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

"A politics of class-warfare is so inhumane - the ultra-wealthy are human beings too, you know?"

Posted by: johngalt at December 17, 2011 7:48 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

"Happy Holidays from the White House. Well, actually, we'll be in Hawaii for Christmas this year, and probably in Spain or Greece next Christmas. But you know what we mean. And of course, the next Christmas after that, we'll be back in Chicago, permanently."

Posted by: Keith Arnold at December 17, 2011 8:25 PM

Giants Walked the Earth

Christopher Hitchens was one of -- if not the -- last element in the set intersection of journalist and public intellectual. He embraced ideas of the left and offered me the most sincere and rational challenges to my beliefs that I have encountered. He did a great book with The Weekly Standard's Chris Caldwell: Left Hooks, Right Crosses. Each submitted a dozen or so favorite articles or papers which captured or reinforced his beliefs and wrote an introduction. His half of this compilation and his Letters to a Young Contrarian represent the most logical (if still unconvincing) arguments for left wing ideas I have ever encountered.

Of course, my introduction to Hitch was his magisterial No One Left to Lie To, which perhaps wins the award for greatest title ever

He crossed the road so frequently to become an object of true affection for those on the right. Reading The Long Short War or No One Left lead many to claim him for our side. Jonah Goldberg pens an awesome G-File today, comparing Hitch to Whittaker Chambers. Jonah brushes with claiming Hitchens.

I first got the idea that Hitchens might be a man of the Right after watching him on C-Span discussing the Odyssey. He was on with, among others, Jody Bottum and a left-wing female academic who (at least as far as I remember it) had little to offer other than blah-blah-blah-white-males-blah-blah (I'm paraphrasing). Hitchens had no use for the woman and really had nothing to say to her. Meanwhile, he could have a real argument with Bottum because they could at least agree that the text matters and that indictments of the heterosexist norms of the Pale Penis People were not that interesting. The more I thought about it, the more it seemed to me that Hitch -- who believed in the importance of Western Civilization (he said he'd rather defend Western Civilization than denounce John Ashcroft), gloried in the splendor of the Canon, admired other cultures but rejected utterly the asininity of multicultural leveling -- was certainly not a man of the contemporary Left, or maybe not of the Left at all

If you do not subscribe to Jonah's letter you are mad, but let me know and I will forward this superb column to you.

Beyond polemics and his evangelical atheism, his brief biography of Thomas Jefferson, books on Henry Kissinger and Mother Theresa, and Why Orwell Matters deserve a serious place in scholarship.

Hitch was a man of reason, a man of western enlightenment, and a man of great intellectual and physical courage. At the suggestion of a Facebook friend, we toasted his Hitchness at 7:00 last night. I don't think he'd appreciate a "requiescat in pace" so Cheers, Hitch!


Posted by John Kranz at 12:06 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

I'm glad you posted a tribute to Hitchens. When I read of his passing I thought it should be done, and also thought I could not do him justice. Your effort proves both points.

Posted by: johngalt at December 17, 2011 7:44 PM

December 14, 2011

War on Christmas!

Bill O'Reilly, call your office!


Posted by John Kranz at 6:53 PM | Comments (0)

December 8, 2011

Welcome to the Blogroll!

Central Standard Times.

A superb find of blog brother jg. Please feel free to email or comment with blogroll suggestions -- the current list seems dated.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:41 PM | Comments (0)

December 6, 2011

Hooray for the Forces of Light!

The WSJ Ed Page joins our unholy nexus:

But if the Trump brand is a net negative in the Granite State, snubbing Mr. Trump could get candidates fired by Iowa caucus-goers. Mr. Trump has a small contingent of populist supporters in the tea party who are drawn to his anti-Obama, anti-China, anti-immigrant rhetoric. Mr. Gingrich and Ms. Bachmann are vigorously courting these voters in Iowa. Now that Mr. Gingrich has accepted the debate invitation, Mr. Romney and Ms. Bachmann might feel compelled to follow suit. Let's hope not.

Mr. Paul is right in saying that participating in a debate moderated by Mr. Trump -- a "birther" who says he's not convinced that President Obama was born in the U.S. -- would demean Republicans, an outcome that the White House is no doubt cheering.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:53 PM | Comments (0)

The Epidemic of Sexting!

I salute blog brother's efforts to expose the idiocy and bias of The Denver Post in his The World According to DP series.

I have been tempted to establish a regular feature on the cluelessness of the FOX31 morning show, Good Day Colorado. I suspect very little actual bias on that program, even though all the errors tend to go one way. I am far more concerned about a lack of curiosity, or even a keen interest in truth. They are just doing a show, and if they tell you Thursday that potatoes will kill you and tell you Tuesday that a new study shows Potatoes to be the cure to Cancer -- I don't think anybody there really cares.

A day seared into my memory is a day they did three stories in a row. I turned to the lovely bride and said "the last three stories were all complete falsehoods. They just did three stories and I don't believe any."

Falsehood is a big word. Ignoring any real context, you could defend all three stories. Yet each has been shown incongruous to the attention and tone used in the story. Here they are:

1) Runaway Toyotas! Hide the children, there are Toyota's out there!

2) Unbundling bag fees. The first airline (Jet Blue?) dropped its fares $20 and added a $20 bag fee. Channel 31 sent a reporter to DIA who all but cried in the camera "What about a young Mom travelling with kids, that could be $60 for three!" You can say that they were right and the community at large has not accepted unbundling, but the savings offered a light traveler were not discussed. Economists booed.

3) I had to wait months for this one, but the first story was "the epidemic of sexting!" Your kids can't even answer their phones 'cause they're all so full of the friends' genitalia! I'm not saying it never happens, or that kids should be lax about sharing, but this was one of those "for God's sake, stay home and lock yourselves in your room!" stories they love. The NY Times (HT: Taranto) suggests it might not have reached pandemic proportions.

One in 10 children ages 10 to 17 has used a cellphone to send or receive sexually suggestive images, but only 1 in 100 has sent images considered graphic enough to violate child pornography laws, a new study found.

Kids behaving stupidly, anybody? I don't want to condone bad behavior, but I fear it might lead young ones to take their eyes off real danger. Like Toyotas...

Posted by John Kranz at 9:07 AM | Comments (0)

December 3, 2011

Word® Doesn't Get Me


Posted by John Kranz at 11:45 AM | Comments (0)

November 21, 2011

All Hail Taranto!

Masterful:


Posted by John Kranz at 2:47 PM | Comments (0)

November 11, 2011

Our Margaret

Blog friend Sugarchuck and I use that endearing sobriquet for the WSJ's Peggy Noonan, whom we have both followed through significant ups and downs. I don't think her writing chops ever dimmed, but her thinking chops did. She is so ensconced in the elite Westside Manhattan and Washington Axis, she became deracinated from reality.

But she pens a beaut today on the GOP debates. Brother JG will be happy to see she starts out taking his side in the "strongest steel forged by the hottest fire" theory. She notices one guy who is not going to face a grilling between Novembers:

One of the people in the debate was bombastic to the point of manic, and another was more pointedly aggressive than her usual poised and beautiful self. But enough about Jim Cramer and Maria Bartiromo. It was a revealing debate. It would be wonderful to see President Obama grilled as the Republicans were Wednesday night in Michigan. What exactly will you cut in the entitlement programs? How will you solve the foreclosure crisis? And we'd like you to answer in 30 seconds while we look at you with the sweet-natured gaze of a cop at a crime scene.

What style that woman has. Though she has generally kind words about each candidate, she ends with a sober and pragmatic warning. Republicans must keep moderates in mind. I don't accept that that means abandoning philosophy, but it is a reminder to see candidates as swing voters see them.
But this is a time to be sober. The voting begins in 7-1/2 weeks. We're picking a president now, right now, every day as we make our decisions.

Did you see the Ohio numbers from Quinnipiac this week? Mr. Obama beating all comers. In an initiative, voters rebuked his health-care, but Gov. John Kasich's effort to gain some control over unions and public-sector spending was roundly defeated in a referendum. In Ohio, that bellwether state. This thing isn't over.

Republicans should sober up. They should be thinking not about what the Republican at the local GOP meeting is thinking, but what the independent across the street is thinking. He's catching the Cain story on TV and thinking: "This guy may have a problem. I want more evidence, but if it's true, then man, we don't need to go there again."


Kim Strassel, on the same page, points out signs of substantive Democratic weakness in Virginia's results. But weakness in the GOP field will make it hard to capitalize.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:38 AM | Comments (1)
But nanobrewer thinks:

@JK, Re: Ms. Noonan. What you said.
Rich and emotive writing style, though getting a bit soft in the frontal cortex.

Posted by: nanobrewer at November 16, 2011 12:09 AM

November 10, 2011

Putting Gov. Perry's Gaffe into Perspective

We all make mistakes!

WARNING: Totally inappropriate audio for work or near any decent, thinking people.

UPDATE: I am removing the embed. You can click through if you'd like to see it, but it is quite offensive and I doubt its veracity.

Posted by John Kranz at 9:59 AM | Comments (0)

October 24, 2011

Big Time Bill, Big Time!

(I predict only Sugarchuck could possibly get the title allusion).

Our humble little blog starts out the week with a link from The Sage of Knoxville.

It was Sunday night just before midnight and to a post of no consequence -- but jg's comment was good!

Posted by John Kranz at 10:37 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Visitors may well believe only "Johns" frequent here.

During whatever spike in traffic this generates we should try to hook some regulars by over-using the terms NATALIE HOLLOWAY PICTURES and ANNA NICOLE SMITH PHOTOS and TIM TEBOW. :)

Posted by: johngalt at October 24, 2011 3:14 PM

October 19, 2011

Do We Have a Pulse?

I'd say it is a serious testament to the overexposure of GOP debates that a bunch of junkies like us don't even bother commenting on them anymore.

Last night's was pretty grizzly. It made me start to dislike several of the candidates. Maybe in the Lone Star State Gov. Perry comes across "tough" but I found him unlikable. The guy who couldn't land a punch on Romney as a flip-flopper suddenly is tenacious on his lawn help?

Rep. Bachmann "Every house in foreclosure has a WOMAN in it: a MOM a WIFE"

Sen. Santorum can't imagine not subsidizing reproduction.

A long evening.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:22 PM | Comments (4)
But jk thinks:

I will cheerfully accept reproach for dismissing tax credits for children and dependents (it was the sanctimony more than the policy). Do my more fecund brothers and sisters feel they would come out poorly in 9-9-9?

Posted by: jk at October 19, 2011 6:56 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I will happily relinquish the tax credits for my three young children, my home mortgage deduction, the miscellaneous and minute multitude of mind-numbing mumbo jumbo that only Turbo Tax can keep straight in return for the 9-9-9 tax. My wife and I and our two incomes may do better or we may do worse, but we will understand it and we'll know that it is FAIR.

Posted by: johngalt at October 19, 2011 11:58 PM
But johngalt thinks:

And I see the questionable tactics you cited as hail-mary plays revealing how each of those candidates feels about the closing of his or her window of opportunity.

Posted by: johngalt at October 20, 2011 1:03 AM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Perry did not appear "feisty" or "energized." He appeared to be small and truculent like a 5-year-old having a fit.

I was shocked that Ron Paul attacked 9-9-9 as "regressive." Apparently, Libertarian principles only apply when they're politically convenient.

The only reason the other candidates attack 9-9-9 is because they didn't think of it and it's getting traction. Sadly disingenuous.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 20, 2011 11:52 AM

October 17, 2011

Headline of the Day

One month in, protests yet to topple capitalism

Posted by John Kranz at 1:14 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

"First they came for the one percent, and I did not speak out - because I was not one of the one percent;

Then they came for the two percent, the three percent, four-five-six, until one day they came for me;

Now I'm ready to speak."

Not I. I speak for the one percent. And I do it now.

Posted by: johngalt at October 17, 2011 3:24 PM

October 12, 2011

Should've had the ThreeSources GOP Debate

We have as many viewers. Hell, we could have lined them up in front of the fireplace at le condo d'amour and peppered them with questions, cutting to Keith and AlexC on YouTube. Woulda been great.

As brother jg and I see both seem to be passing along others' tweets, I am guessing I was not the only one to miss last night's debate. All my tweeps seem convinced that he has the skills to take on President Obama.

I've no good reason to abandon @THEHermanCain and suspect it will boil down to a Romney and a not Romney. As long as THE Herman Cain is in it, put me down for "not Romney." In the end, I'll fall into line. I suppose.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:09 AM | Comments (7)
But jk thinks:

Oh no, Keith I don't think there are any benefits to Governor Romney other than the two you enumerated.

He has no beliefs. If he did, he would not have the spine to stand up for them. I was on a telephone town with him last week and he pandered to every question.

You've picked Perry and that's fine. The best knock on Perry is that he is not adequately prepared for the debates. They are more important this year than they should be. But they are. You wanna win, try not to suck so bad.

I'm with THE Herman Cain because I like a guy with an article in his Twitter handle and he is the only one in the field having any fun at all.

Speaking of the field...it is missing Govs. Christie and Daniels. The choices are not that good. Romney is the best credible candidate to defeat President Obama. You put a wimp in the White House and elect a strong, principled Tea-party infused Congress. And life is good.

(Wow, I should be, like, his communications director with an endorsement like that, huh?)

Posted by: jk at October 12, 2011 1:07 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I tweeted last night that Romney leapfrogged Cain for me. I actually like the 9-9-9 plan, which I'll defend if you care, but energy and regulation and entitlement reform are getting drowned by 999. They're part of a set of anti-statism policies that must be implemented to restore American liberty and prosperity. Maybe not a fifty-nine point set, but a set nonetheless.

I imagine Cain giving a deer-in-the-headlights answer like the one he gave on his choice for Fed Chairman last night in a debate with Obama and I see the current president becoming a fountain of competence by comparison. Not better than Cain, but on a par.

Call it coaching or cramming if you will but Governor Romneycare is three moves ahead on every topic you care to name. And no, I don't agree that he is Obama-lite, or even a big government RINO. His fresh message inspired me in 2008 and with his outward adjustment to a TEA Party world he's starting to win me over again this cycle. "What?" thought I, "I'm falling for the establishment easterner?" Yep.

For some of the details you can refer to @dickmorristweet thread last night but he combined exceptional policy depth and breadth with overarching themes of American Exceptionalism and world leadership. He will make Obama look puny and will draw a stark contrast between the worldview of the two men. And I objectively believe he would be a better president than Herman Cain in addition to being more electable.

We've talked in the past about a big-tent candidate. If even I can admire this east coast establishment darling that only leaves one fork of the GOP clan undecided - evangelicals. Their opening gambit: He's a cultist. Well, I'd be more inclined to consider their man if he, Rick Perry, were not such a simpleton. He's George Bush without the cowboy charm. Actually, I think Bush got better grades.

Posted by: johngalt at October 12, 2011 4:04 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Dick Morris isn't as hard on Cain as I am.

Posted by: johngalt at October 12, 2011 4:17 PM
But jk thinks:

Perhaps if he were willing to be known as @THEGovernorMittRomney...

Did y'all catch Dan Henninger's column on Governor Christie? He said, and I basically agree, that our appreciation for the big man was due to his skills as a prosecutor. When a sniffling Garden State teacher would whine that it was a hardship for her to pay $200 toward her health insurance, Christie would devastate with facts. He knew the national average, the percentage paid in the private sector, the number of years it had been free to workers -- and he would blast that into 11 words that did not include a pause for interruption by opposing counsel.

Henninger thought it was a concern for his ability to move into national discussions. And he may be correct; it is a compelling case. I suggest here that factual preparation is important (what else could make our former Speaker from Georgia so lovable?) Governor Perry slept in and missed the train. THE Herman Cain walks pretty close to the edge. I missed the Maestro Greenspan answer (defensible if you qualify it with a time period) but remember watching him flail on Palestinian Rights of Return and the Murfreesboro, TN mosque. It's not pretty.

Posted by: jk at October 12, 2011 4:59 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The Refugee is all in with JG. As much as Cain and 9-9-9 appeal to him, it is clear that Cain simply does not have the breadth of knowledge to run or govern effectively. He is no doubt very bright, but he is just not ready. Run for the Senate again or maybe the House.

Perry is done as far as The Refugee is concerned. Refusing to repudiate the insult to Romney's religion was a deal breaker.

The #1, N√ļmero Uno, most important attribute in 2012 is electability. If Obama gets re-elected, then we have socialized medicine in perpetuity until it brings the country to
it's knees. Ideological purity is a distant second. We. Must. Beat. Obama.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at October 12, 2011 6:10 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:

@BR: If Obama gets re-elected, then we have socialized medicine let's not forget a 10% reduction in electric power generating capacity, cuba drilling the Gulf dry, more apologies and ACORN-funded mayhem.

The primary process is particularly dehumanizing (it's taken place of hazing I think). Watch Mitt tack right after appearing to be the moderate "centrist" during this process. So, another strength of his is this implacability: while certainly appearing too slick, this also gives those faith that he can bend, not break. I can see all the others breaking on OBL's millions (& willing attack-minions).

A moderate Romney with an energized Ryan should be a'plenty to undo Uh-bama.

Posted by: nanobrewer at October 15, 2011 2:22 AM

October 11, 2011

Headline of the Day

"Stoner arrested for alleged possession of marijuana"

Save you the click:

Daniel Stoner, 26, was arrested early Friday for possession of cocaine and marijuana.

Bloomington Police Department Lt. Bill Parker said a foot patrol officer first noticed Stoner and two others sitting on a step in an alleyway on the south side of Brothers Bar and Grill. The officer thought he saw the men passing around marijuana, so he approached the group. He reportedly saw a bag of marijuana and a glass pipe.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:30 PM | Comments (0)

October 5, 2011

jk Defends Rep. Bachmann

Against a common enemy of the Washington Post, we must put aside our differences and stand as one. The WaPo afternoon politics mailer (which really is pretty good, and free) shouts:

Video: Bachmann agrees with 'impeach' Obama wish

Oh my, oh dearie me, what has our brunette of the lakes done to disgrace us now? Thinks me. But if you click through (only 30 second clip), I think you could call it a joke or -- at worst -- some hard edged political persiflage.

Paging the WaPo: a sense of humor was found in the parking lot; please claim it at the front desk.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:26 PM | Comments (0)

October 3, 2011

QOTD DEUX

My client will not be bullied out of exercising his First Amendment right to make clear his belief that your client is a spoiled, brainless twit who is cheapening the political discourse in this country. Therefore, henceforth, the "Totally Meghan McCain" series may be found at http://pajamasmedia.com for your client's reading pleasure.

On the off chance that your client actually files the baseless litigation you
threatened in your September 23, 2011 letter, Mr. Wolf will pursue all available remedies
available under any applicable anti-SLAPP statutes, State law malicious
prosecution/abuse of process actions, and/or Rule 11 sanctions. Although I do not envy
you the Herculean task before you, please make sure your client understands the potential
consequences to her personally -- in addition to those her attorney would face -- for
pursuing this ill-advised course of action. -- Christopher Scott Badeaux


You rilly gotta read the whole thing.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:43 PM | Comments (0)

September 28, 2011

You Will Respect Thomas Friedman's Autoritah!

Matt Welch sees disturbing Friedman trends continued in the Times Editorialist's new book.

Let;s see, the exaltation of "authority" and "national unity" and "sacrifice" over the messy independence of individuals...isn't there a word for that?

Posted by John Kranz at 5:43 PM | Comments (0)

September 21, 2011

Fact Checking the Fact Checker

John Hinderaker goes after WaPo's Glenn Kessler for the same "fact check" I whined about:

So, who is stuck in a time warp? Does Kessler not know what has happened during the last 20 years? Does he not understand that the Oslo Accords collapsed under the violent weight of the Second Intifada? Does he really believe that a letter written by the deceased head of a defunct organization in 1993, answers for all time the question whether Palestinians and their leaders actually accept the existence of Israel as an independent nation, let alone a Jewish state?

Great piece. Hinderaker rebuts every item in the slanted piece and awards "four pinocchios" at the end. Superb.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:21 AM | Comments (0)

September 19, 2011

"Fact Checker"

I shouldn't click. I have learned not to read Peggy Noonan and it has done wonders for my disposition.

Someday, I will do the same with the WaPo Fact Checker. But today, it is too late. Mr. Glenn Kessler sees fit to lecture Gov. Rick Perry for "newbie" mistakes, charitably pointing out "The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has its own diplomatic code, and it takes time and effort to understand it."

The offending, two Pinocchio quote?

I certainly have some concerns. The first step in any peaceful negotiation for a two-state solution for the Palestinians is to recognize the right of Israel's existence. They have to denounce terrorism in both word and deed. And they have to sit down and negotiate with Israel directly. Anything short of that is a non-starter in my opinion."

LIAR! Kessler provides a letter from Nobel Laureate Yasser Arafat to prove that things are hunky-dory between the Jews and Palestinians:
"The PLO recognizes the right of the State of Israel to exist in peace and security," the letter from Arafat said. "The PLO commits itself to the Middle East peace process, and to a peaceful resolution of the conflict between the two sides and declares that all outstanding issues relating to permanent status will be resolved through negotiations. Ö Accordingly, the PLO renounces the use of terrorism and other acts of violence and will assume responsibility over all PLO elements and personnel in order to assure their compliance, prevent violations and discipline violators."

Israel received a promise from Arafat in 1996. Still Governor Perry things there is some problem. What a loser.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:38 PM | Comments (0)

September 14, 2011

Who Ya Gonna Call?

This may only be funny to current and ex Colorado folk. But Tom Martino, or "Troubleshooter Tom Martino" has been a fixture on Denver TV and radio since I was a kid. He's the tough guy consumer reporter, keeping business honest and sticking up for the little guy and bla, bla, bla...

I was intrigued that he lately expanded from general business bashing to product endorsements. It seemed to undercut his credibility -- for the remaining 100 viewers who think a consumer reporter has credibility, at least. But now, I see he needed the cash:

Denver TV and radio personality and businessman Tom Martino has filed for Chapter 7 personal bankruptcy protection, claiming assets of $1.37 million and liabilities of $78.6 million.

Martino, known as the "Troubleshooter" for his consumer-advocacy shows, appears regularly on the KDVR Fox-31 television station and AM radio station 630-KHOW. He's also involved in businesses including real estate and telecommunications.


It's a small man who laughs at the misfortune of others but HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHA!

Posted by John Kranz at 5:38 PM | Comments (0)

Slate Adds to the Intellectual Debate

Seriously?

Hat-tip: @JonahNRO

Posted by John Kranz at 12:14 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Romneycare is a fairly large monkey to carry around. Ponzi-outing? Not so much. The cartoon is an example of an idea that seems clever but doesn't match reality. I try not to post those when they happen to me.

Posted by: johngalt at September 14, 2011 2:50 PM
But jk thinks:

Oh. monkey on your back, I get it.

Prepped with Jonah's less charitable description, I saw something completely different. One could probably do a paper on this. A hundred participants see it cold, 100 read a monkey-on-your-back joke, and 100 read "Hey @Slate here's a tip. If your cartoon looks like masturbating monkeys, go a different way." Then all 300 describe the cartoon to somebody else...

Taranto points out it is an Orlando Sentinel cartoon, not created by Slate.

Posted by: jk at September 14, 2011 3:45 PM

September 12, 2011

Quote of the Day

Pragmatism. Perceptive writers like David Brooks of the New York Times told us in 2008 that Obama was basically a pragmatist, a slave to no ideology but simply a student of what works. Brooks was apparently impressed by Obama's mention of Edmund Burke and the sharp crease in his pants. -- Michael Barone
Posted by John Kranz at 3:30 PM | Comments (0)

September 5, 2011

Reagan for kids (especially the 18-year olds)

This post legitimately spans multiple categories. I don't recall it being discussed here when it was first released, last May I believe, so I'll immortalize it in the 3Srcs/EatOurPeas archives now.

For the youth of America who don't remember the economic resurgence that came about under the policies of President Ronald Reagan Mike Huckabee offers a new animated American History series to give them the pro-America version of events they may or may not have ever heard of. Here's a clip from the Reagan Revolution episode.

Mike Huckabee calls it an unbiased telling of history, while those more inclined to a politically-correct worldview see the religion boogeyman as they quote from the video's website: "We recognize and celebrate faith, religion and the role of God in America's founding and making our country the greatest place on Earth," the site reads.

I had attributed this reflexive anti-religion attitude to a majority of the one-third of American voters who are unaffiliated with a party but I'm ready to concede it may be yet another form of extremism that's been made to appear mainstream by the Dominant Liberal Establishment Mass Media. In defense of his product Huckabee claims that, "Ninety-one percent of liberals who were shown the videos said they not only learned something they would buy them for their kids."

Posted by JohnGalt at 1:09 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Ooooooooh i dooooooon't knooooooooow maaaaaaaan....

Perhaps I have been whacking at the Gov for too long and need to better "recalculate pros and cons in real-time" but the tone of this is Reefer Madness meets Emmanuel Goldstein meets a PBS Kids' Recycling Special.

I enjoy a positive portrayal of our 40th as much as the next ThreeSourcer but there is little factual information here and the tone tries too hard to persuade to actually be persuasive.

And those Teeth! Millions of young children will grow up having Ronald Reagan nightmares! That can't be good.

Posted by: jk at September 6, 2011 10:55 AM

August 26, 2011

QOTD II

And don't even get me started on Joe Biden. He could show up at a Russian state funeral in a Speedo and pith helmet, singing the Alvin and the Chipmunks B-sides, and NBC's Andrea Mitchell would lead with the disturbing reports that Sarah Palin quoted Biden inaccurately on her Twitter account. -- Jonah Goldberg
Posted by John Kranz at 3:36 PM | Comments (0)

August 22, 2011

Great News for T-Paw!

If the house is bigger, he is going to have a lot less grass to mow!

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is planning to nearly quadruple the size of his $12 million California beachfront mansion.

Romney, a former Massachusetts governor and the nominal front-runner for the GOPís 2012 presidential nomination, is planning to bulldoze his 3,009-square-foot home facing the Pacific Ocean in La Jolla, Calif., and replace it with an 11,062-square-foot home, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.


And yet, I categorize this not under immigrant labor, or 2012, but "Media and Blogging." I suggest that this is of more interest to the media than Barack & Michelle's Excellent Martha's Vineyard Vacation.

It may be a better story, but I laugh that I read on wingnut blogs all day that the optics are bad and that American's are going to seethe when they see these photos. But I don't think any American's are going to see the photos or know it is happening unless they read HotAir -- and those people are probably not the President's base.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:07 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

"Mansion?" Three-bedrooms (or two, depending who you ask) and 3009 square feet? Ah, I see, Wa-Po is using the archaic definition. Let's roll with that: "Say brothers, shall we plan a 3Srcs Beer Summit at my mansion this fall?"

Posted by: johngalt at August 22, 2011 3:07 PM
But jk thinks:

Tip top, Guv! Will your butler, Headly, be making those Hazelnut-infused Cosmopolitans again? Next week is not good for me, I'm afraid the Bently's in the shop...

Posted by: jk at August 22, 2011 4:01 PM

August 17, 2011

Who writes this stuff?

A local story is a Headline of the Day nominee: Parker dog may be totaled by insurance company

Read more: Parker dog may be totaled by insurance company - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_18691337?obref=obnetwork#ixzz1VJPY6dH3
Read The Denver Post's Terms of Use of its content: http://www.denverpost.com/termsofuse

OK, they're talking about a business in Parker (Denver suburb) called "The Dog" thinks me. Nope.

A Parker woman was devastated when her dog was hit by a minivan last week and the driver's insurance company told her they'd pay for one or two trips to the vet and would then total out her dog.

Farmers' Insurance sent Marcia Pinkstaff a letter stating it would reimburse her for the initial trip to the vet and would consider paying for a follow up exam, but nothing more.

According to KMGH-TV (http://bit.ly/mYGv1u), a spokesman for Farmers said the phrase totaling out is industry jargon and refers to the property damage part of a policy.

Farmers' vice president Jerry Davies says he's sorry about the circumstances because he also has a dog.

Read more: Parker dog may be totaled by insurance company - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_18691337?obref=obnetwork#ixzz1VJPzdb1l
Read The Denver Post's Terms of Use of its content: http://www.denverpost.com/termsofuse

This story is proof that new hiring is taking place in the newspaper business. He's sorry "because he also has a dog?"

[Since I excerpted the entire story I figured I'd better leave the automatically inserted crumb trail text in place for copyright purposes. Readers will kindly advise whether or not it is helpful.]

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:26 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

The good trolls at Righthaven, for whom we fear excerpting Denver Post stories, have been getting their coprophagic asses kicked in courts of late.

I am tempted to say the witch is dead. In the words of avowed socialist EY Harburg: "She's not only merely dead, she's really most sincerely dead."

Posted by: jk at August 17, 2011 4:09 PM

August 11, 2011

All Hail Harsanyi!

"The Crumbling Cult of Obama"

Jacob Weisberg of Slate wrote that because of "intellectual primitives" on the right, "compromise is dead" and "there's no point trying to explain complicated matters to the American people. The president has tried reasonableness and he has failed."

"Reasonableness," you'll remember, is shoving a wholly partisan, Byzantine restructuring of the health care system through Congress in the midst of an economic downturn. But chipping a few billion off a $3.7 trillion budget in exchange for raising the debt ceiling is an act of irrationality that has, apparently, sucked the very soul from the American project.

Whole great read thing must.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:15 AM | Comments (2)
But Terri thinks:

Intellectualprimatives.com anyone?

Posted by: Terri at August 11, 2011 12:22 PM
But jk thinks:

Heh. None of the knuckle draggers I know would be smart enough to spell it...

Posted by: jk at August 11, 2011 1:02 PM

August 10, 2011

Word of the Day

Word of the Day honors must go to Blog Meister JK for his use of "usufruct" in a recent post. The Refugee will confess his total ignorance of the term, but do so in Obamian fashion. That is, he'll blame somebody else: his public school education. The Refugee assumed that it has something to do with a sweetener, such as "high usufructose corn syrup." But no.

From Webster:

Usufruct (n): the legal right of using and enjoying the fruits or profits of something belonging to another

Perhaps using in a sentence will help:

Barney Frank uses his position in Congress to usufruct the nation.

Oh, wait, that's using it as a verb...

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 3:19 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Heh. It will sadly see much use in many parts of speech if things do not change.

Posted by: jk at August 10, 2011 4:06 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Remove "usu" and it sounds pretty close to the plain description of what Frank does to the country.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at August 10, 2011 11:42 PM

August 8, 2011

How to Speak Democrat

Michael Barone writes a piece today titled, "Americans want the right to "Earned Success," no doubt a title that will be hailed by blog brother JG. That, however, is not the subject of this post. Rather, Barone has this beauty of a quip:

They [voters] may favor "investment in education" until they figure out that it actually means political payoffs to teachers' unions.

That got The Refugee thinking that a dictionary of "How to Speak Democrat" might be highly useful to the electorate. For example, we're all familiar with the "How to Speak Realtor" in which "cute cottage" actually means "This place is smaller than a postage stamp," and "equity opportunity" actually means "You'll spend every free moment and extra dime over the next five years fixing all the problems in this place."

In the spirit of public service, The Refugee would like to start "How to Speak Democrat" with a few definitions:

"Let me be clear" actually means, "I'm about to lie through my teeth."

"Balanced approach" actually means, "We spend more, you pay more." (credit to Speaker Boehner)

"Significant headwinds" actually means, "We're still blaming George W. Bush"

"We didn't realize how difficult it would be" actually means, "We don't have an f-ing clue what we're doing and everything we've tried has failed."

"Special interests" actually means, "Anyone who supports Republicans."

"Responsible dialog" actually means, "Republicans should be censored."

"Bi-partisan" actually means, "Republicans should roll over."

"Racist" actually means, "Anything Democrats oppose."

"Hate speech" actually means, "Anything Democrats oppose."

"Right-wing extremist" actually means, "Anyone to the right of Karl Marx."

The Refugee invites all Three Sourcers to contribute to this effort. We will split the royalties equally.

Hat tip: RealClearPolitics.com

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 2:58 PM | Comments (4)
But johngalt thinks:

Like!

Posted by: johngalt at August 8, 2011 3:42 PM
But jk thinks:

Millionaires and Billionaires: people with a private-sector job.

Posted by: jk at August 8, 2011 6:48 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:

I have said for ages that:
"Bipartisan" in modern media parlance = 'whatever Ted Kennedy would do'

I have been mulling over the idea of a DC Dictionary. 1st entry would be:
"cuts" = miniscule reductions in previously arranged GInormous increases.

Posted by: nanobrewer at August 9, 2011 1:29 AM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

A very good point, NB. Along those lines, might I suggest:

"Draconian cuts" actually means, "A 9% spending increase instead a 10% spending increase."

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at August 9, 2011 5:29 PM

August 7, 2011

All My Favorite FOX News Shows Cancelled

Man! You'd think an attractive white woman was missing somewhere! FOXNews did the full 24-hour cable press yesterday, dragging Neil Cavuto over from FOX Business Network for a full day jabbering about the S&P downgrade.

I like Cavuto (a fellow MS sufferer) and the discussions were generally moderate. But the presence of "special coverage" and special artwork added extra strum and drang. It struck me as odd that The [Wall Street] Journal Editorial Report was cancelled. I'm not sure they tape in time to address the downgrade but I could not help thinking "Yeah, who'd want to hear what those guys say?"

I oscillate (F= kx) between two thoughts. One pole is Brother br's hope that a third-party opinion will spur seriousness. Okay, Dad's pissed, we'd better cut spending and go to bed. But I cannot help but think we are overempowering the guys who, again, picked the Lions to win the super Bowl the last twelve years. If -- and it is no longshot -- the good people at Standard & Poor's tell the US Congress to raise taxes, that will not be a blow for liberty.

A day's extra coverage because The Bailiwick of Guernsey 's bonds are better rated than T-bills might be a little over the top even for FOX.

We can only hope a woman comes up missing soon (blog friend sc surmises that they're all locked in Greta Van Susteren's basement).

Posted by John Kranz at 11:16 AM | Comments (6)
But johngalt thinks:

So T-bills are downgraded and the result is that world equity markets tumble? A "flight to safety, in the form of ... T-bills? What gives? Am I missing something?

Posted by: johngalt at August 7, 2011 5:48 PM
But jk thinks:

That was predicted on Kudlow a couple of weeks back: T-bill rates going down on a downgrade as part of a flight to safety. You going to take S&P's word?

Me, I'm going long Bailiwick of Guernsey bonds.

And, In FNS's weak defense, they ran Journal Editorial Report overnight and snuck in a Stossel Sunday afternoon. I happened to catch and manually TiVo it.

Posted by: jk at August 8, 2011 11:33 AM
But gd thinks:

The only answer I can come up with is that the move to T-bills indicates just how few investment options there are out there. Many in the investment community view the downgrade as a negative indicator for the overall outlook of the economy and thus will have a negative impact on the stock market. As investment dollars leave the market they are going to the safer havens of T-bills and gold. Like JK says, as bad as the US economy and even with the downgrade, investors still view T-bills as safer than the stock market and the debt of other countries (especially in the near term).

Plus, very few (if any) 401(k) plans have savings options that are FDIC backed so it is very difficult for investors to pull their money out of 401(k) plans and put into cash. Investors will see T-bills as ‚Äúbeating the alternative‚ÄĚ given the pessimistic economic outlook.

Posted by: gd at August 8, 2011 12:02 PM
But jk thinks:

And I must agree with Maestro Greenspan even though it is not comforting. There is zero default risk for the US in debt denominated in its own currency. We would certainly monetize before default.

Posted by: jk at August 8, 2011 12:15 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Which is why we have Stealthflation, which is why I'm staying in the market. Moving to cash or T-bills merely exposes you to the full risk of inflation. At least the stock market can appreciate as the dollar deflates, offsetting the depreciation of your portfolio by inflation. That is, when it isn't tumbling for other reasons.

Posted by: johngalt at August 8, 2011 3:08 PM
But gd thinks:

If "stealthflation" means a rising equity market then I am going to have to go back to using the term stagflation because I do not see stagflation as bullish for equities.

Posted by: gd at August 8, 2011 8:06 PM

August 5, 2011

Amazon Recommends...

Here's your Internet persona when you click Instapundit Amazon Links:

Just a guy who likes to sit at home with his clown nose on, making rude lissajous figures on his scope...

Posted by John Kranz at 12:15 PM | Comments (0)

August 3, 2011

Other Than That, The Story Was Accurate

Could not possibly resist!

Posted by John Kranz at 4:49 PM | Comments (1)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

I could have gone all day without that visual.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at August 5, 2011 12:14 PM

At Last, the Other Side of the Story is Told

Contradicting the mainstream media narrative that the Tea Party is a new populist movement that formed spontaneously in reaction to government bailouts or the Obama administration, the facts show that the Tea Party in Congress is merely the familiar old neo-Confederate Southern right under a new label. The threat of Southern Tea Party representatives and their sidekicks from the Midwest and elsewhere to destroy America's credit rating unless the federal government agrees to enact Dixie's economic agenda of preserving defense spending while slashing entitlements is simply the latest act of aggression by the Solid South.
Yup, the mainstream media has been covering for the Tea Party for too long. But Michael Lind is ready to blow the whistle in some critically important original reporting. It seems a lot of Tea Party participation is in the South. And Lind finds some White supremacist groups in the South (who favour British spelling). Need I continue? Ad ergo procter helicopter eggo!
The fact that Tea Party conservatism speaks with a pronounced Southern drawl may have escaped the attention of the mainstream media, but it is obvious to members of Congress who have to try to work with these disproportionately-Southern fanatics. One is Rep. Loretta Sanchez of California. As a guest on a radio show, she mocked the Southern accent of the typical congressional Tea Party caucus member:
No doubt Lind would be amused beyond urinary continence had a Southern Representative mocked Rep. Sanchez's ordering a plate of tortillas and menudo at the Capitol Cafeteria.

Hat-tip: Blog friend Sugarchuck, who includes some delightful barnyard invective I should have included.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:39 AM | Comments (0)

July 29, 2011

Headline of the Day

From today's Denver Post sports section, regarding the signing of Bronco rookie offensive tackle Orlando Franklin for $4.361 million:

"Franklin due some Benjamins"

OK, it's got nothing to do with politics, but it's downright clever.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 1:59 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Heh.

Posted by: jk at July 29, 2011 7:12 PM

July 27, 2011

A Troubling Storyline, Indeed.

STOP THE PRESSES!!! Who cares about the debt ceiling? There's bad news out for a former Governor of Alaska!!!!!

A box office star Sarah Palin isn't.

A new documentary about her time as governor of Alaska has grossed less than $100,000 since its release earlier this month, including a paltry $24,000 last weekend.

That flop is leading some people to question just how much pull Palin retains within the Republican base, a troubling storyline for the 2008 vice presidential nominee as she mulls a 2012 run.


I had no idea things were this bad. At least the family has their faith to fall back on.

No word yet on box-office results from the Chris Cillizza Biopic "The WaPo Wrangler." But if the writing was not smarmy enough for you, or of the words are too big, click on through to have Chris himself read it to you between a couple of commercials. It's very...ummm...what's the word I'm looking for...

Posted by John Kranz at 12:38 PM | Comments (0)

July 24, 2011

"Only Democrats can protect you from GOP extremists"

...or so the press would have us believe.

The internets are buzzing over the bombing and mass shooting in Norway that has now been confessed to by suspect Anders Behring Breivik. In a hysteria that surpasses that which surrounded the Jared Loughner murders, establishment media and left-wing bloggers are pouncing on the "facts" of this case for they appear to finally "prove" that TEA Partiers and other "right-wing extremists" are a threat to polite society.

The first print report I read was from MSNBC.com. "...police say suspect was right-wing Christian fundamentalist" reads the sub-head.

Breivik had belonged to an anti-immigration party and wrote blogs attacking multi-culturalism and Islam, but police said he had been unknown to them and that his Internet activity traced so far included no calls for violence.

A 1,500-page manifesto emerged that carried detailed planning for and direct references to an attack on the summer camp where most of the deaths occurred.

The warning to mistrust and beware of peaceful bloggers or anyone else who criticize illegal immigration, identity politics and any aspect of muslim political belief wears no veil whatsoever. Extra credit if said advocate happens to be Christian, or "right-wing."

Think I'm making this up? Think I'm overly sensitive or pointing out bogeymen? The same MSNBC article ends with a one-sentence paragraph:

Home-grown

Home-grown anti-government militants have struck elsewhere in the past, notably in the United States, where Timothy McVeigh killed 168 people with a truck bomb in Oklahoma City in 1995. [Boldface in original.]

So, you may be wondering, how do the press conclude that this nutjob is a "right-winger?" Partially from deputy police chief Roger Andresen's heavily modified quote:

"We have no more information than ... what has been found on (his) own websites, which is that is goes toward the right (wing) and that it is, so to speak, Christian fundamentalist." [Emphasis mine.]

But there is other evidence. The original MSNBC story hyperlinks a companion piece under the words "A 1,500-page manifesto emerged" wherein further detail is provided on the killer's "right-wing" and "anti-immigration" identity. The "right-wing zealot" "who liked guns and weight-lifting" was reportedly a member of Norway's Progress Party for a short time. While there's nothing cut-and-dry about European multi-party government the Progress Party is clearly not "right-wing Christian fundamentalist" as is being reported. The second largest party in Norway, it is a "conservative liberal" party, not to be confused with a liberal conservative party. My head spun with the various contradictory explanations and descriptions, but the most persuasive evidence to me about what ideas the European "Progress Party" holds came from the list of current conservative liberal parties around the world:

Andorra: Liberal Party of Andorra[2]

Argentina: Recreate for Growth

Austria: Alliance for the Future of Austria[2]

Belgium: Libertarian, Direct, Democratic[2]

Bulgaria: National Movement for Stability and Progress[2]

Colombia: Radical Change Party

Croatia: Croatian Social Liberal Party[2]

Czech Republic: Public Affairs[2]

Denmark: Liberal Party of Denmark[1][3][2]

Estonia: Estonian Reform Party

Faroe Islands: Union Party[2]

France: Civic Alliance for Democracy in Europe

Greenland: Feeling of Community[2]

Iceland: Liberal Party[2]

Japan: Your Party

Lithuania: Liberal and Centre Union[2], Liberals' Movement[2]

Moldova: Liberal Party[2]

Mongolia: Civil Will Party

Netherlands: People's Party for Freedom and Democracy[2]

Peru: Popular Action

Poland: Real Politics Union, Congress of the New Right

Romania: National Liberal Party

Slovakia: Freedom and Solidarity

Spain: Democratic Convergence of Catalonia, Majorcan Union

Thailand: Democrat Party

Uruguay: Liberal Party

[Emphasis mine.]

While not completely judging these folks by their titles they certainly don't carry any suggestion of individual rights or a limited, Republican form of government. Like Loughner and McVeigh before him, Breivik's anti-social extremism appears to emanate not from a profound respect for individual rights and limited government, but from the very cultural-identity politics, pitting the supposed interests of various groups against the others, so masterfully practiced on the left. But then the establishment media in the United States (and elsewhere) has indisputedly become quite cavalier when it comes to factual content in its journalistic product.

Posted by JohnGalt at 8:15 PM | Comments (4)
But jk thinks:

I will not defend the lazy, incurious, and biased media organizations. But I will defend one of my favorite words.

"Liberal" as used in Ludwig von Mises's "Liberalism" screams individual rights and is most conducive to limited, Republican government. Sadly, the word has been perverted in this nation by lazy, incurious, and biased media organizations.

Posted by: jk at July 25, 2011 10:14 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Indeed. I do my small part to reclaim it by calling myself: Liberal, Classical Liberal.

The idea of "liberal conservative" seemed to describe me as well, until I researched this story.

Posted by: johngalt at July 25, 2011 12:35 PM
But jk thinks:

How about "Nazi?"

Posted by: jk at July 25, 2011 12:41 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Nazi could describe this guy. In fact, a friend posted about the story: "Great, the master race is back... I hope the Norweigans can do the right thing and end this idiot!"

Posted by: johngalt at July 25, 2011 2:29 PM

July 22, 2011

The Dad Life

Can we have a little fun here? I got this in a (I think) hilarious e-card from dagny's sister for Father's Day. I've shared the link via email with a few friends over the past weeks but wasn't sure if I should post it for fear of copyright infringment. Come to learn that the card company stole it too - from a place called COTM*. So here's the Youtube. My kids and I have almost all of it memorized after "dozens and dozens" of plays.

* COTM is Church On The Move. A hip little modern ministry out of Tulsa, OK. Good for them, although I had to start skipping ahead when they said "being a real dad is about self-sacrifice, it's about putting the people that we love first and taking care of them" and then some song about sinners. [If you do it for your own satisfaction then it isn't sacrifice. If you don't get satisfaction from putting your family first then don't become a dad.] Awesome vid though.

Posted by JohnGalt at 1:18 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Way fun. I think I am still a Whole Foods Parking Lot guy, but this is right up there.

Posted by: jk at July 22, 2011 10:41 AM

July 19, 2011

NYTimes Rebuked by ... NYTimes

Jon Entine at The American, gives props to the NYTimes ombudsman:

The New York Times' public editor, Arthur Brisbane, weighed in on the much-criticized reporting on natural gas by Ian Urbina, issuing a sharp rebuke of the staff's reporting and editing.

I agree that "Thankfully it has the integrity to wash its dirty laundry in public." But I fear that the retraction will not create the buzz that the original piece did. Entine describes:
The Urbina "the sky-is-falling" express went off the rails completely on June 25 and 26 with two front-page stories asserting that shale gas reserves are being hyped by the natural gas industry. Urbina and the sources he quoted suggested parallels to Ponzi schemes, Enron, and the housing bubble.

Scientists at MIT and elsewhere, who have confirmed massive shale gas reserves but whose research was not referenced in the piece, immediately issued sharp rebukes of the Urbina narrative. As I noted in a critique for RealClearPolitics, the Times' article left out key editorial framing details, such as the dubious credibility of the only two identified sources. And as Michael Levi of the Council of Foreign Relations pointed out in his blog, this latest critique of shale gas consisted almost entirely of cherry-picked comments from anonymous sources.

I was pretty surprised by the original piece. Yes, it was the Times, but this was a serious anti-fracking hit piece on the News pages -- maybe I was in the tank for Big Gas after all. It successfully instilled doubt.

That's what I get for believing the New York Times.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:53 PM | Comments (0)

July 16, 2011

Charles M. Blow of the NYTimes Meets Some Real People who Work

A great friend of this blog sends this link to ensure I don't miss this inspiring story of humans who perspire as part of their employment.

Last week I spent a few days in the Deep South -- a thousand miles from the moneyed canyons of Manhattan and the prattle of Washington politics -- talking to everyday people, blue-collar workers, people not trying to win the future so much as survive the present.

Jesus, Charles! I hope you got all your shots first!
They are women whose skin glistens from steam and sweat, whose hands stay damp from being dipped in buckets and dried on aprons. They are men who work in boots with steel toes, the kind that don't take shining, the kind that lean over and tell stories when you take them off.

Don't I know it, man. I, myself, wrote a particularly tricky recursive Java method just last week...

You will want the whole thing to read. As blog friend summarizes: "I've just come back from the most amazing journey where I was able to see working fellows. We were able to get right out of the car and talk to some of them. It reminded me of that Whitman stuff we used to have to read. Quite charming, but you wouldn't want to live there."

UPDATE: Taranto calls it Charles Blow's Wild Kingdom:

Blow concludes that "Washington could learn a lot about backbone from listening to them." He's seriously trying to be a populist! Instead, he ends up sounding like the narrator of a nature show describing some exotic fauna.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:23 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Hey, isn't this the work that "Americans are unwilling to do?"

I suppose this illustrates why the government "needs" to give "everyone" a college education, so that nobody has to do this work unless they are an <strike>illegal alien</strike> immigrant.

Posted by: johngalt at July 16, 2011 1:33 PM
But jk thinks:

I just want to hug one of those authentic, working Americans (y'know, if you could fumigate them first)...

The link provider points out that the author went to Grambling. You'd think toil was not such a foreign, Jane Goodall, concept.

Posted by: jk at July 17, 2011 12:19 PM

July 14, 2011

Other Than That, the Story Was Accurate

I'm just borrowing Taranto's line, I'll wager NewsCorp's deductions that he'll use it as well:

Rupert Murdochís News Corp did not get a $4.8 billion tax refund for the past four years, as I reported. Instead, it paid that much in cash for corporate income taxes for the years 2007 through 2010 while earning pre-tax profits of $10.4 billion.

More at TaxProf, who ruined David Cay Johnston's first day at Reuters by pointing out this wee little error.

UPDATE: 1 out of 1 for the day:

Posted by John Kranz at 11:00 AM | Comments (0)

July 12, 2011

Imagine Whirled Peas...

Did I mention I don't really care for green?

Posted by John Kranz at 4:20 PM | Comments (0)

You Don't Have to Like It

You don't have to like it, you just have to eat it. This blog is eatourpeas.com until it is no longer even slightly amusing...

Posted by John Kranz at 2:32 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Oh yes. You are naughty!

Posted by: johngalt at July 12, 2011 2:41 PM

July 11, 2011

Should've Called my Sponsor

But I am now the proud owner of eatourpeas.com. Our motto:

"It's not going to get easier, it's going to get harder. So we might as well do it now; pull off the Band-aid, eat our peas," Obama said at a White House news conference. -- LATimes

UPDATE: Open to suggestions, but I was thinking I might aggregate all the posts in the "Obama Administration Category," and give it a nice green header logo.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:39 PM | Comments (4)
But jk thinks:

And I renewed nascarretards.com. Admitting I have a problem is step one...

Posted by: jk at July 11, 2011 5:44 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I have a better idea. Let's do a one-page spread on what "shared sacrifice" looks like.

- Government employment cut by the same percentage as the private sector.

- Union employees pay for their own retirement like private sector employees.

And my favorite:

- Every American gives exactly the same percentage of his paycheck to the government in income taxes. No deductions. No credits. No more monkey business by "corporate fat cats." Oh wait, they'd get a tax cut? Lower income workers would actually pay MORE? "Yes Barack. You asked that the burden be SHARED. Sounds fair to me. Let's do it!"

Posted by: johngalt at July 12, 2011 1:52 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Let's go commentariat - more suggestions. What constitutes sharing of the austerity sacrifice?

- Citizens of other nations will have to take up arms and help pay for ammunition when our armed forces are committed to help fight for their liberty.

-

-

more! more!

Posted by: johngalt at July 12, 2011 2:44 PM
But jk thinks:

The mohair subsidy would also be given to those who don't raise mohair! (Am I getting it?)

To repent I offer: Thomas Miller's How the Debt Tussle Can Help Move Toward a Flat Tax.

Posted by: jk at July 12, 2011 5:36 PM

July 5, 2011

Almost as if There were a Double Standard

A. Barton Hinkle at Reason may have found some inconsistency in the reporting between anti-government and pro-government protests. I know, I was dismissive at first, too. But hear him out:

Boy, those sure have been some mighty peaceful protests against government budget cuts in Greece, haven't they? You bet they have--at least if you ignore the rock-throwing, fire-setting, window-smashing, and blood-spilling.

Which, it seems clear, a lot of major news organs would like to do. According to one story in The Wall Street Journal, the demonstrations "began peacefully." According to another, last week Constitution Square in Athens "seethed with indignant, but peaceful, demonstrators."

"The day began noisily but peacefully," intoned The New York Times on Wednesday. The Washington Post likewise observed that "a peaceful protest . . . quickly degenerated into violence." Reuters reported that, regardless of "clashes between stone-throwing masked youths and riot police . . . thousands of peaceful protesters demonstrated against the austerity plan."

Sure, blood was spilled. But don't blame the protesters. As the Journal reported, it was Greece's parliament that approved a "widely hated austerity package" despite "the best efforts of peaceful grass-roots activists., megaphone-touting [sic] labor unionists, and stone-throwing anarchists."

This is a sharp contrast from how, say, Tea Party protests against the passage of ObamaCare were treated.

[...]


Do you want me to continue commenting here? Do I need to?

Posted by John Kranz at 4:05 PM | Comments (0)

June 29, 2011

All Hail Taranto

WSJBOTW

Posted by John Kranz at 5:02 PM | Comments (0)

So, Just to get Things Straight

  • Michelle Bachmann picks a possibly poor example to support her assertion of abolitionist "Founding Fathers" (picking a "Founding Son").
  • The President rails against "tax breaks for corporate jets" included in his stimulus.
Which will lead the evening news? Wagers, anyone?
Posted by John Kranz at 3:21 PM | Comments (0)

June 27, 2011

STOP ME!!!

Admitting you have a domain name problem is the first step...

Posted by John Kranz at 7:57 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

I still prefer nascarretards-dot-com, NY Times mentions not withstanding.

Posted by: johngalt at June 28, 2011 9:16 AM
But jk thinks:

Yeah, NASCAR Retards has more "pop."

Posted by: jk at June 28, 2011 10:58 AM

Y'all Can Think What You Want

Ed Driscoll finds this a real "gotcha" moment. NYTimes Columnist David Carr says "If it's Kansas, Missouri, no big deal. You know, that's the dance of the low-sloping foreheads. The middle places, right? ...Did I just say that aloud?"

But I watched it and thought "people really watch this crap?" It's less than a minute and I wanted to change stations.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:07 AM | Comments (0)

June 22, 2011

BEST PA Conservative Blog

Congrats to blog brother AlexC. PA Water Cooler (PAH2OdS/dt > 0) was named "Best Conservative Blog" by Politics PA

We've seen this crew at conservative events across the state, and they do a darn good job amalgamating conservative news and opinions from around PA. The blog is especially on target with GOP insider goings on in SEPA.

Well done!

Posted by John Kranz at 3:51 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Nice!

Posted by: johngalt at June 23, 2011 3:16 PM

June 15, 2011

Does. Not. Quite. Grasp. Concept.

Lori Montgomery at the WaPo is enjoying this too much:

A majority of Senate Republicans appeared to break Tuesday with two decades of GOP orthodoxy against higher taxes, voting to advance a plan to abruptly cancel billions of dollars in annual tax credits for ethanol blenders.

The measure, offered by Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), fell short of the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster threat. But it had the support of 34 of 47 Republicans, most of whom have signed an anti-tax pledge that specifically prohibits raising taxes by any means but economic growth.


I know Grover Norquist has -- regrettably -- held their feet to the fire on this. But outside his office, ADM, and the State of Iowa, I don't think you'll hear one Republican upset with the 34.

UPDATE: IBD is not real happy with the other 13.

Subsidies: How is it that the party loudly proclaiming how the government shouldn't "pick winners and losers" could only manage to get 34 senators to oppose one of the most egregious examples of federal industrial policy?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:53 AM | Comments (0)

June 13, 2011

Sarah Palin Sarah Palin Sarah Palin Sarah Palin Sarah Palin

John Fund may have found a tiny discrepancy in media treatment. Governor Palin's emails attracted quite a bit of interest for an ex-VP candidate (do we get all of Senator John Edwards's?)

But the buildup to their release was treated like the prelude to the release of the Pentagon Papers. David Corn of Mother Jones salivated at the prospect of what might be in the 24,199 pages being released. "I have a reporter in Juneau who will grab our set of documents and scan the docs for us in the DC bureau," he wrote. "I and the eight reporters in my bureau will then pore over these pages. Mother Jones, msnbc.com, and ProPublica will be putting up a searchable online database--very quickly--which will allow everybody (other reporters, readers, and GOP opposition researchers) to join in."

Other media outlets joined in. Ryan Kellett of the Washington Post asked the paper's readers to help out. "Join The Post in digging through them," he wrote. "We are looking for 100 organized and diligent readers who will work alongside Post reporters to analyze, contextualize, and research the e-mails. Think of it as spending some time in our newsroom.

"Our hope is that working together, we can efficiently find interesting information and extract new stories that will lead to further investigation. We don't know what we'll find, but we want you to be ready and open for the challenge."

Contrast this with the level of interest that reporters have shown in Barack Obama's lack of a paper trail during the 2008 campaign and afterwards. No, I'm not talking about the issue of his birth certificate. I am thinking of his college records and papers; his application to the Illinois bar to become a lawyer; his complete list of clients while he was in private practice; and his records from his service in the Illinois State Senate. Almost none of this has been released in whole or in part by Mr. Obama, and requests have been airily dismissed.


A blogger I had not read before referred to the exercise as "panty sniffing." I thought it apt and would link, but I will not Google "Sarah Palin Panty Sniffing." Sorry, I will do a lot for my esteemed and selective readership, but everybody has some limit, somewhere.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:19 PM | Comments (0)

June 3, 2011

PBS as Public Menace

CATO's David Boaz suggests "The main point [about PBS] isn't the money, it's the separation of news and state. If anything should be kept separate from government and politics, it's the news and public-affairs programming that informs Americans about government and its policies."

PBS used to ask, "If not PBS, then who?" The answer now is: HBO, Bravo, Discovery, History, History International, Science, Planet Green, Sundance, Military, C-SPAN 1/2/3 and many more.

Defending its decision to include ads online, PBS says that it has more than 1,000 hours of online video, which "dwarfs anything anyone else has done." Hardly.

C-SPAN has more than 160,000 hours of video online. The Cato Institute has more than 2,000.


They boast that they only get 15% of their funding from taxpayers. I suspect that is reduced by some accounting alchemy (extra credit: in what way is the Corporation for Public Broadcasting a private company?) But, like Boaz, I'll take them at their word.
Good -- they can absorb the loss.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:51 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

End the unfair tax "subsidy" to the non-profit Public Broadcasting System! No more taxpayer dollars for "big television."

Posted by: johngalt at June 3, 2011 7:59 PM
But jk thinks:

Big Bird something something something, Elmo something something something...

Posted by: jk at June 3, 2011 8:02 PM

May 31, 2011

Reason == Rubes

I have emailed Professor Reynolds a time or two, asking why he had never hurled "the R-word" toward our pals at Reason magazine. They were pretty deep in the tank, thanks to their (again deserved) antipathy toward Senator McCain. But I never suspected the cause of liberty was served by electing President Barack Obama.

I am pretty certain this is the first time:

THEY TOLD ME IF I VOTED FOR JOHN MCCAIN WE'D SEE THE IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY EXPAND: And they were right! "Civil libertarians once looked to this president to right the constitutional balance. But what Obama has wrought is the same old 'Terror Presidency' with new rhetoric." You were expecting a Chicago machine politician to support civil liberties? Rubes!

Yessssssss!

Posted by John Kranz at 6:44 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

This one is worth a click-through on the click-through. Hey GD, you gettin' this? This is right up your alley.

Posted by: johngalt at June 1, 2011 2:49 PM

May 27, 2011

Crazy Ass Conservatives

If you need to put together an example of smarmy journalism into a time capsule at your Memorial Day shindig this weekend, might I recommend this archetype from Penelope Green.

Last week, for example, in the middle of Lightfair, an annual trade show for the lighting industry, Philips unveiled a winged LED bulb with a promised life span of 25,000 hours and a price tag of $40 to $50. The Associated Press reported its cost as $50, and Fox News ran the story with the headline "As Government Bans Regular Light Bulbs, LED Replacements Will Cost $50 Each." Mr. Beck, Rush Limbaugh and conservative bloggers around the country gleefully pounced on the story, once again urging the stockpiling of light bulbs.

Fifty Dollar Light Bulbs! Can't those wingnuts read? The bulb could cost as little as $40!

Anyhow, the whole thing is a) Not a problem at all! and b) Is Completely George Bush's fault!

The law does not ban the use or manufacture of all incandescent bulbs, nor does it mandate the use of compact fluorescent ones. It simply requires that companies make some of their incandescent bulbs work a bit better, meeting a series of rolling deadlines between 2012 and 2014.

GOT THAT THICKHEADS???? They can still make incandescents, they just have to make them conform to a government design AND STOP SNIGGERING IN THE BACK!!

Hat-tip: Incandescent-Insty, with a link to stock up that profits him directly. Capitalist Pig!

UPDATE: I emailed the Professor asking him how he could seek to profit from light bulb lies and he replied "I'm just a shill for Big Bulb." Heh.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:16 PM | Comments (7)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

A while back, I stocked up when my local Home Depot had Philips incandescent 4-packs for 99 cents.

Let's see, a 25-cent/1000-hour incandescent, or a $40/50000-hour LED -- which need tints unless you like bluish light. No wonder it takes several years to break even via lower electricity consumption, and that's if an LED really is reliable. Having used LEDs for the, uh, 27 years I've done electronics, I couldn't count how many I've burned out.

Better count on plugging your lamps into surge suppressors, because one lightning strike taking out incandescents isn't so bad, but how about a dozen LEDs throughout your house?

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at May 28, 2011 3:29 PM
But johngalt thinks:

And when your 25-cent bulb burns out in 700 (or 200, or 10) hours instead of its rated 1000 you throw it out and possibly grumble about having to get the ladder out again. When a bulb costing as much as three 12-packs of microbrew burns out in 10,000 hours instead of its rated 50K you're looking for the warranty card and the 800 number and the pro-ration schedule and ...

Aren't these being touted by the same crowd that wants us to consume less and "simplify" our lives?

Posted by: johngalt at May 28, 2011 5:08 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

The first CFCs I ever bought (which burned out in days) had to be mailed back for "free" replacements. It was years before I dared risk any more, and the only reason I bothered is because one circuit in our house has old wiring that supposedly can't handle more than 60 watts.

Let's also not forget the occasional $2000 mercury cleanup should a CFC break.

"it seems that Bridges was apparently given quite poor advice on this issue because she could have safely cleaned up the broken bulb herself."

I suppose every liberal in the world is ready to prove how safe these minute amounts of mercury are, by breaking CFCs in their homes and cleaning up themselves? These are the same goddamn wackos who warn us about mercury in fish.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at May 30, 2011 9:43 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Brother PE, was there meant to be a link in there somewhere? And it's CFL's. CFC's are what supposedly fried the ozone layer, since debunked if I'm not mistaken.

Oh, and brother Keith, I meant to give you credit for an awesome paraphrase of 'Anthem.' I was seriously prepared to search my electronic copy of that title for the passage that matched your comment.

Posted by: johngalt at May 31, 2011 1:52 AM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Err, yeah, CFLs. Pardon me while I release some hairspray into the atmosphere!

I can't find the link I had meant to include (did I forget to close the tag?), but here's a pro-freedom perspective on the woman who spent $2000 to clean up a broken CFL in her kid's room. There are environmentalists who say, "Oh, the mercury isn't THAT much," but are any of us going to take a chance with our families? I sure as hell wouldn't.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1825609/posts

"Just gently clean the glass up, sprinkle with fine sulfur powder, and vacuum it up in a week or two. Or just vacuum it up straight away." Yes, I'm sure we all keep powdered sulfur around, and we can forego the use of a room for a week.

Environmentalists just don't deal with reality, and their goal is to take us with them.

I've only once broken a mercury thermometer, only because I was young and curious if this 1200-degree thermometer could withstand a gas flame. I've never experienced a broken mercury switch. But good lord, dealing with a CFL bulb is almost like handling toxic waste.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at May 31, 2011 10:27 PM
But jk thinks:

HTML tags fixed. Reasonable rates, top customer service.

It's a link worth fixing.

Posted by: jk at June 1, 2011 9:55 AM

All Hail Taranto

Best of the Web:


Posted by John Kranz at 4:16 PM | Comments (0)

April 30, 2011

So-Called "Thinkers"

Heh.

Posted by JohnGalt at 6:36 PM | Comments (0)

April 26, 2011

Layers and Layers of Factchecking

The world's worst typist has to be pretty cautious on the stone throwing. But nobody at the Washington Post knows which states the GOP Leadership members are from?

The fight also has implications for another 2012 race. Rep. Mike Pence (R), who is expected to run for governor in Washington, has been leading the fight to defund Planned Parenthood in that state.

Worse still, it's from a Chris Cillizza column on Governor Mitch Daniels. You'd think they might have Indiana on their mind.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:05 PM | Comments (0)

April 21, 2011

Duh!

Those wacky Democrats have caught the GOP in flagrante hypocritia, and the WaPo is there to report it:

Does Paul Ryan's own budget proposal give away the game on the debt ceiling -- and undercut the GOP's leverage on the issue -- by acknowledging that it must be raised?

That's what Democrats are now charging -- and they are pointing to it as proof that Republicans have no leg to stand on as they hold out against the debt ceiling hike that everyone knows has to happen.

This has gotten little attention, but Senate Dems points out that on pages five and six of Ryan's proposal, the plan lays out its version of what constitutes "appropriate levels of the public debt" over the next ten years. It says that in fiscal year 2012, the appropriate debt limit would be $16.2 trillion -- nearly two trillion higher than it is now. In 2021, according to Ryan's proposal, the proper debt limit would be $23.1 trillion -- nearly $9 trillion higher than the present.


Chairman Ryan never claimed that the debt ceiling would not be raised. I doubt anybody has a plan out that would prevent it. The mantra is that the ceiling not be raised without a plan to cut spending.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:21 PM | Comments (0)

April 20, 2011

America is Stunned!

The Wonkette site cruelly mocks Governor Palin's son with Downs Syndrome as Trig celebrates his third birthday. And the reaction is instantaneous:

Wonkette is still there?

Posted by John Kranz at 5:57 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I saw over at another site that Papa John's just cancelled their advertizing at Wonkette for this. My prediction is that Wonkette's traffic at least triples today - for the very reason you cite. Yes, I plead guilty. I was one of them; I thought Wonkette had folded long ago, and was surprised they're still functional.

I'll do penance by ordering a pizza tonight. Solidarity, and all that.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at April 20, 2011 7:04 PM
But jk thinks:

Mixed emotions (no anchovies on mine, please...) I truly like to see somebody pay for outlandish disregard to human dignity. I love a private market whack with zero state involvement.

On the other hand, this could impede the advertising model for Internet punditry. If blogs just become just too dangerous, advertisers might be more inclined to finance CBS Evening News instead. No danger of anything ever being noticed there.

Posted by: jk at April 20, 2011 8:02 PM

Other than That, the Story was Accurate...

Yesterday's item on Charles Manson and global warming (since corrected) should have referred to the inverse, not the contrapositive. -- James Taranto
Posted by John Kranz at 4:11 PM | Comments (0)

April 19, 2011

Still Miss the Woodcuts

There was weeping and gnashing of teeth when the evil Rupert Murdoch purchased the Wall Street Journal. Right, left and me wondered if there would be substantive changes in our nation's finest newspaper.

I hold that it is editorially unchanged. The one alteration is the replacement of the staid and stately woodcut illustrations with color photos. The former were part of the paper's branding. The new ones have a more modern, multimedia-friendly look.

It also allows somebody -- I don't who or his title -- to present opponents of the editorial position in an unflattering light. Minority leader Pelosi always gets a "Botox-Before" picture that makes her look 107, President Obama gets a scowling, angry picture that makes him appear even more surly than he is.

But. This. Gem. Of AFL-CIO Chief Richard Trumka. I may just weep.

trumka.jpg

"Look for the Union Label..."

UPDATE: This calls for a link to my favorite fake AFSCME video.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:34 PM | Comments (0)

April 13, 2011

All Hail Tapper!

Seriously, I have had my differences with him, but Jake Tapper at ABC has been tough on the Administration and one of the few who will not roll over to have his tummy scratched at the WH Press Conferences. He notes something of a discrepancy today:

President Obama at the GOP House retreat, January 2010:
We're not going to be able to do anything about any of these entitlements if what we do is characterize whatever proposals are put out there as, "Well, you know, that's -- the other party's being irresponsible. The other party is trying to hurt our senior citizens. That the other party is doing X, Y, Z."

President Obama today:
One vision has been championed by Republicans in the House of Representatives and embraced by several of their party's presidential candidatesÖThis is a vision that says up to 50 million Americans have to lose their health insurance in order for us to reduce the deficit. And who are those 50 million Americans? Many are someoneís grandparents who wouldn't be able afford nursing home care without Medicaid. Many are poor children. Some are middle-class families who have children with autism or Down's syndrome. Some are kids with disabilities so severe that they require 24-hour care. These are the Americans weíd be telling to fend for themselves.


Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 7:51 PM | Comments (0)

Alternate Reality

In a mind-bending departure from the carbon-based life plane, Eugene Robinson tries to convince the reader that the recent 2011 budget compromise was a diabolical plot to end democracy as we know it.

Thereís no question who won last weekís showdown. The outcome ó nearly $40 billion in painful cuts ó goes well beyond the GOPís initial demands. That Democrats were able to save a few pet programs is something but not much.
[Emphasis in the orginal text.]

Sure, Eugene - $40 billion out of $1.4 trillion has the nation writhing in pain. But he goes on;

The far-right ideologues in the House seek to starve the federal government to the point where it can no longer fulfill its constitutional duty to promote the general welfare.

Clearly, no government can survive on a meager $1.3 trillion budget. Memo to Eugene: "general welfare" in context of the founders did not refer to a welfare state in which the government pays for the food, housing and medical care for all citizens.

Let's hope that he's right about one thing:

Ryan seeks not just to reduce the nationís long-term indebtedness but to change the essence of the relationship between citizens and their government.

In an effort to avoid more than three pulled quotes, The Refugee left out some real howlers from the column. The nation might be better off without a strong Left wing, but you've gotta appreciate the entertainment value that they bring to the party.

CORRECTION: The US budget is approximately $3.5 trillion, not $1.3 trillion as indicated. The Refugee regrets the error.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 10:30 AM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

On the backs of America's seniors and most vulnerable citizens...

Posted by: jk at April 13, 2011 12:39 PM
But johngalt thinks:

The combination of this Robinson column, which Rosen read to me on my morning commute, and the philosophical vacuum on the GOP side, which was explained by Dr. Hurd in my Who Lost post, had my creative juices flowing this morning. Hmmm... how to drive home the immorality of redistributive taxation? How's this for an Xtranormal script:

Woman - "Do you support a military draft?"

Man - "Of course not. It is immoral to force a citizen to risk his life against his will, even for the good of the nation."

Woman - "Then it is also immoral to force a citizen to give his earnings to the government against his will, even for the good of the nation."

[pause]

Man - "That's different. My life is worth more than just money."

Woman - "But you earn money by trading some of your finite lifetime to work for someone else. How much of your life is it moral for the government to take away from you?"

[pause]

Man - "That's why it's only moral to tax the rich. They get so much money for the time they work that it's okay to take some of it."

Woman - "Let me get this straight: If you earn little you have a right to keep it and if you earn much you don't?"

Man - "Yes. All men are created equal and they should stay that way."

[pause]

Woman - "Did you invent an iPhone too, just like Steve Jobs did?"

Man - "We are more equal at some things than others."

Woman - "I hope that the inventors don't stop letting you decide what we will be equal about."

Posted by: johngalt at April 13, 2011 3:35 PM

April 11, 2011

Quote of the Day

Paul Krugman responded to my reply (March 31) to his two critiques (afternoon and evening of March 30) of my post (January 14) on the negative correlation between investment and unemployment. He now says that Taylor "professes himself baffled." Of course I didn't profess any such thing. I simply showed that Krugman was wrong. -- John Taylor
Hat-tip: The Everyday Economist Yeah, I stole his Quote of the Day. So what?
Posted by John Kranz at 5:42 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Better hope he's not a [shameless legal harrasser of poor blokes who link copyrighted articles] (righthaven?) client!

Awesome quote though.

Posted by: johngalt at April 11, 2011 7:38 PM

April 10, 2011

Good Blog Categories

The ThreeSources blog categories (this one filed under "Media and Blogging") suffer from both benign neglect and a sort of commons problem. Every now and then I see one of my esteemed colleagues has added to or organized the list. I am not a heavy user but admit they are very valuable to find older items and are useful pari passu with the seriousness of their use and maintenance. I'll try to improve, but this post has the best I have ever seen. I dare not even aspire to this:

tyler_durden110405.gif

The post is well worth a read as well. Instapundit highlighted it for its keen insight: "Demand is slack because everyone who could afford more crap already owns more crap than they need or even want." US Consumer growth will not be fed from old sectors. The flat screen TV craze is gone. Nor will it come from green energy appliances. The US Consumer will not recover until the next big thing lifts it up. And, pace Durden, it will have to be cool enough to overcome a newfound frugality.

The good news is that feeding China and India with middle class items might keep us solvent until then.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:10 AM | Comments (0)

April 1, 2011

All Sail Harsanyi

Those of us who have hailed Denver Post columnist David Harsayi over the past several years are saddened to see him moving on. However, there are some upsides. This, from The Refugee's brother-in-law:

Dave got a job with Glenn Beck as managing editor of his books division, Mercury. He will be responsible for selecting five to 10 books a year. His first project is a version of the Federalist Papers in updated language for all the poor folks like me who went to public schools. Dave will continue to syndicate his column for Creators Syndicate, and The Denver Post will carry it.

Sounds like an awesome project that The Refugee will have to pick up. Moreover, we will still be able to obtain the occassional Harsanyi pearl of wisdom.

Godspeed, David. Oh, wait, you're an atheist... best wishes!

Hattip: The Refugee's Brother-in-Law

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 11:41 AM | Comments (0)

TV Worth Watching

Brother ac shares some news over at PAH20dS/dt>0

Posted by John Kranz at 11:29 AM | Comments (3)
But AlexC thinks:

They're counting on me to double their audience.

7 is a worthy goal.

Posted by: AlexC at April 1, 2011 12:23 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Had me goin' until I read the comments. I admit it - I am a rube.

Posted by: johngalt at April 4, 2011 2:50 PM
But jk thinks:

The posted date might be factored in...

Posted by: jk at April 4, 2011 2:52 PM

March 30, 2011

Gambling at Rick's?

The big news here is the source: ABC News with Diane Sawyer has recognized crony capitalism:

When the White House announced the federal government would loan $465 million to Tesla, a California start-up company with plans to develop an all-electric sedan, President Obama called it an "historic opportunity to ensure that the next generation of fuel-efficient cars and trucks are made in America."

The loan also represented a lucrative opportunity for Steve Westly, a major investor in the car company who had raised more than $500,000 for the president's campaign. Since President Obama took office, the U.S. Department of Energy has given more than half a billion dollars to companies backed by Westly's California venture capital firm.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:35 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Peabody! Give her the Peabody! I haven't seen such an expose since Woodward and Bernstein!

S'pose they finally got internet access over there at ABC?

Oh wait - it looks like an internet-only story by blogger Brian Ross. Keep us posted if Dianne actually covers this on-air. (And did anybody watch the sheepish attempt at "ambush journalism" on the part of ABC? "Excuse me. Mister Westly? If I could just ask ..." Fade to white noise.)

Posted by: johngalt at March 30, 2011 3:04 PM

March 24, 2011

Toxic Levels of Smug in the water supply

I happily condemned James O'Keefe's guerilla videos. Interesting that he has collected the scalps he has, but I am still not ready to sign on with his tactics. Both the ACORN and npr stings included outrageous comments, but I am not ready to fire someone because they failed to confront an objectionable loony.

BUT...

I have to applaud his choice of targets. ACORN is an execrable organized crime organization. And npr...well, npr is an execrable but damned fine news and entertainment organization. Calm, reasoned, stentorian morning voice Steve Inskeep takes to the WSJ Ed Page today to defend his employer. He opens with the classic we're really swell and your mother wears Army boots tactic:

Emails show that NPR refused the money, and the conservative website The Blaze discovered that the executive's remarks were repeatedly lifted out of context. Nevertheless, the executive and his CEO were dismissed.

I congratulate Mr. O'Keefe for upholding his values: faith in the power of video to mislead. As columnist Michael Gerson noted in the Washington Post, by selectively misquoting the executive's words, rearranging events, and other devices, Mr. O'Keefe made him sound sympathetic to Islamic radicals and unfairly tarnished NPR with "an elaborate, alluring lie."


Liberal? Us? NO -- conservatives listen for chrissakes! His boys are risking their lives to bring you the facts in Libya!

Sorry to make light, but his defense is completely devoid of facts. I'd suggest his discrediting remarks are more out of context than anything Mister O'Keefe presented. His audience at the WSJ Ed Page was likely far more interested in the appropriateness of federal funding than Inskeep's assertions of swellness.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:26 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

If they're a "damned fine news and entertainment organization," then they'll have no difficulty prospering in a free-market environment, competing for both listeners and revenues, and have no further need of living on the dole.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at March 24, 2011 1:06 PM
But jk thinks:

Amen. And Mister Inskeep could be as smug as he wants if I am not paying his salary.

Posted by: jk at March 24, 2011 1:16 PM
But AlexC thinks:

James O'Keefe is simply using the Saul Alinsky playbook against the left. Taking the battle to them, and humiliating people up and down the liberal intelligencia with their own words.

Almost nothing is worse to someone's "value" as repeated and persistant humiliation. The needling lowers your respect, and ultimately drives you to irrelevance.

Posted by: AlexC at March 24, 2011 1:32 PM

March 15, 2011

Quote of the Day

It is possible to fight a forest fire and not be distracted by how the calamity was caused, and whether the cause taints the integrity of the people who deal with it. But oil spills are saturated in blame and political confusion--and opportunity. There is a sense that they are not accidents but accidents waiting to happen, and thus acts of greed. As a result, oil-soaked birds and fish come to symbolize a reviled industry's heedless behavior. Every year, as many as four hundred thousand birds are killed in America by electricity-generating wind turbines, but they do not make the cover of Time. -- Raffi Khatchadourian on the BP oil spill in the New Yorker, March 14
Courtesy of WSJ Notable & Quotable
Posted by John Kranz at 12:35 PM | Comments (0)

March 11, 2011

He's Baaaaaaack!

For all who were worried about James Taranto:

taranto110311.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 4:37 PM | Comments (2)
But Lisa M thinks:

Glad you saw this. I was going to link it for you.

Posted by: Lisa M at March 11, 2011 5:56 PM
But jk thinks:

I was gonna call 9-1-1.

Posted by: jk at March 11, 2011 6:08 PM

Great Juxtaposition

While perusing RealClearPolitics.com this morning, The Refugee saw this headline:

"We can't afford dramatic, ideological cuts," by Sens. Feinstein and Boxer
followed immediately by this one:
"Strange logic in planet Washington," by Jonah Goldberg

Memo to the honorable Senators from California ("May I call you Senator, ma'am?"): It's the dramatic, ideological spending that we cannot afford.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 12:45 PM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Well THERE's the PROBLEM. Congressional Democrats think that spending cuts cost money. (No ma'am, I think you mean tax cuts "cost" money. BOTH, you say?)

Posted by: johngalt at March 11, 2011 2:56 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

By the Democrat's logic, everytime I don't buy something, I lose money. If I just max out my credit cards I'll be rich!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at March 11, 2011 3:41 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Dagny reminds me that I haven't mentioned in a while that RCP's Tom Bevan played high school football with her brother. (That and three bucks will get me a cup of coffee.)

Posted by: johngalt at March 11, 2011 9:28 PM

March 10, 2011

Fair and Balanced

Nope, that is not the WaPo motto:

Wisconsin Assembly approves bill to slash union rights for public workers [...] Earlier Thursday, the Democratic senators who fled Wisconsin last month to try to stall a vote on the measure said they were preparing to return to the state capital and fight back against what one of them called "political thuggery in its worst form."

State Sen. Robert Jauch said the Democrats are discussing ways to overturn the legislation.


Slashing rights! Political thuggery in its worst form! Dang, maybe they should start having elections in the Badger State, and allow people to choose their representatives and leaders.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:05 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

In contrast: WSJ - Taxpayers Win in Wisconsin

"Mr. Walker and his allies have won a rare victory for taxpayers, one which should be a lesson for other states and Governors. The monopoly power of government unions can be broken."
Posted by: johngalt at March 11, 2011 3:03 PM

You Can't Fight in Here -- This is the War Room!

Tears, shouts as terror hearing becomes political

Ummm, a Congressional hearing?

Posted by John Kranz at 4:26 PM | Comments (0)

March 8, 2011

Yawn!

The EXPLOSIVE NPR vid is roiling the world!

Really, without Ms. Giles in the microskirt, I find it difficult to watch a James O'Keefe video all the way through.

Is the (former) NPR exec "condescending and arrogant?" Well, yeah -- stop the presses! He seems to hold a low opinion of tea party folk and Republicans. Captain Renault was never as shocked as me.

I'm sorry, these are not fair. Posing as big donors, I think they can expect politeness from the folks in front of whom they are dangling $5 million. Mister Schiller doesn't come off well, but his interlocutors are operating under pretense and seeding the discussion with far more outrageous comments than anything their mark says. Most folks at NPR do feel that the "Muslim voice is not heard" and that "Zionists have too much influence in American Media." And that Republicans are stoopid.

Ann Althouse makes a fair comparison that the Koch Brothers spoof of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker was overly enjoyed on the left. But if they feel intellectually superior, I can feel morally superior. Don't feed the O'Keefe's...

UPDATE: Yet he has a scalp. I have to give props for that. The solution is so obvious that the weasel in the video states it. Yank government funding and let them behave as they want. There, that was easy -- feel free to email your other intractable problems as they arise...

UPDATE II: Two scalps.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:50 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Brother PLEASE! One really doesn't have to give such deference to the opinions of eunuchs at National Progressive Radio in order to be worldly and erudite. You know they are racist, sexist libtards with no awareness or understanding of anything that can't be reached via subway line but everyday Americans, out of similar deference and just plain-old goodwill, consider them to be, well, intelligent and informed.

A government-hating co-worker of mine doesn't even know who Chris Christie is, much less Ron Schiller. More and more of this stuff needs to hit the dominant media - the more, and the sooner, the better.

Beside that, look what it has elicited from NPR [see "Update"] - A veiled defense of the "tea party movement:"

"The comments contained in the video released today are contrary to everything we stand for [publicly], and we completely disavow the views expressed. [Which should have been kept private.] NPR is fair and open minded about the people we cover. [Including the "seriously, seriously racist people."] Our reporting reflects those values every single day ‚ÄĒ in the civility of our programming, the range of [left-wing] opinions we reflect and the diversity of stories we tell. [And the obvious biases that guide which stories we refuse to tell.]"

This is PROGRESS, brother. PROGRESS! Thank you Mister O'Keefe.

Posted by: johngalt at March 9, 2011 2:48 PM

March 7, 2011

Merle Sold Out!

I have posted several "Merle Hazard" videos. Mr. Hazard has not been a dedicated disciple of freedom, but his stuff is funny -- and he once had Art Laffer do a cameo.

But his current release is a stunt done with PBS: Hazard performs a song written by and chosen among PBS listeners. Is anybody else getting a little nervous?

You can watch it on YouTube or at Professor Mankiw's. I'm not above embedding, but I think I'll pass.

PBS NewsHour viewer "David the Writer" (if I hear it correctly) pens alternate lyrics for Simon & Garfunkel's 47th Street Bridge Song. Instead of "Feelin' Groovy," the lads are "Feelin' Lousy."

I'm not surprised the PBS viewer chose a 60s song, and I'm not surprised he lays every imaginable problem at the foot of Greedy Wall Street. I am surprised that the prizewinning song is so unclever. A dark day for the geniuses of Public Television.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:12 PM | Comments (0)

February 21, 2011

My First Tipjar

I'm a BIG tipper. My hero is the Steve Martin mobster character in "My Blue Heaven" who tips the flight attendant $100 for a drink. Rick Moranis (FBI character) asks him why he is so intent on tipping. He says "I'm not -- I believe in over-tipping."

I'm not that good, but I'm a good tipper, and a big believer in supporting those things in which I believe. Yet I have never once, I don't think, hit a blogger's "tip jar." I consider it a bad business model and am reluctant to support it. I did give Andrew Sullivan money in his first couple pledge drives -- and look at how that investment came out. I bought some blogads on Day By Day for the band and the blog and the coffeehouse that were not 100% media buys.

But "please hit my tip jar?" Never.

Until today. I don't know that a big time Law Professor in the famously generous Wisconsin public sector needs my $20, but I remain impressed at Ann Althouse's on the street reporting and promotion of an important local story with huge national implications. I posit that this would have gone nowhere without her. A commenter led the charge to reward her for doing "what the MSM won't." I could not agree more. There is a PayPal button and an Amazon search on her home page.

UPDATE: Professor Althouse emails "Your contribution is appreciated and encouraging." Now Mom can get that operation, I suppose...

Posted by John Kranz at 10:42 AM | Comments (4)
But nanobrewer thinks:


Hi TS'ers,

I've read that PayPal is anti-military. Are there suitably reputable alternatives?

nb

Posted by: nanobrewer at February 23, 2011 9:04 AM
But jk thinks:

At last -- a good reason to dislike them. I fundamentally dislike their service. I live online and have little compunction about most online purchases but PayPal seems so cheesy that I do not trust them with my info.

Yet, as you say, they remain the only game in their space. There are others but none has the critical mass to displace big ugly.

Posted by: jk at February 23, 2011 10:05 AM
But nanobrewer thinks:

I've been reading about Gearpay; www.gearpay.com. I might give them a whirl, as I've barely begun with PP, and my first few months will see low values.

Posted by: nanobrewer at February 24, 2011 9:12 AM
But nanobrewer thinks:

Oh, and for full disclosure; PP isn't anti-military per se, the main stink is they are anti-gun.

http://smallestminority.blogspot.com/2009/07/no-good-deed-goes-unpunished.html

It apparently became obnoxious after the eBay buyout.

nb

Posted by: nanobrewer at February 24, 2011 9:14 AM

February 18, 2011

Paragraph of the Day

From Walter Russell Mead's blog about the events in Madison:

We might be able to stave off collapse for a little while if we retreated to protectionism and fortress America: ban cheap imports from overseas and otherwise cut ourselves off from the global system we have done so much to build. I will save the case against this strategy for another series of posts; suffice it to say for now that it is harder to imagine a surer road to misery, poverty and global wars on an unprecedented scale than for the US to take this dangerous path. It is probably the most destructive as well as the most evil and unjust thing that we could do. The results would be devastating on a scale that could eclipse the horrors of World War Two ó both for us and for all the people around the world who rely on American power and economic health to preserve what fragile stability and prosperity human beings have managed to achieve.
Posted by Boulder Refugee at 5:21 PM | Comments (0)

February 12, 2011

Fictional 'Atlas Shrugged' Becomes America's Reality

With the 'Atlas Shrugged' movie [thanks for the link KA] set to open in just two months it is nice to see favorable treatment of the book in the press. This short column by Michael Smith of the Panama City News Herald includes one of the most objective summaries of the plot that I've ever read. But the main point is to show how the 1957 fictional plot so closely mirrors 21st century current events.

Hayek and Rand provide examples that are simplified views of our current times and the evolution of governmental control using collectivist policies in a "crisis" as an effective approach to problem resolution. A similar march toward a predictable endgame pitting the "looters" against the "producers" of value is clearly visible today.

And yes, he does also quote Hayek. (Now you can't resist clicking through, can you!)

Posted by JohnGalt at 5:23 PM | Comments (0)

February 9, 2011

Valuing AOL

Insty brings the comical news that AOL's market cap dropped almost the exact value of their Huffington Post purchase.

Thought one: the share price plummeted because thousands of stockholders said "holy cow. AOL is still alive?" They then checked their portfolio and liquidated their remaining positions.

Thought two: I think it actually is worth $315 Million. I may not agree with them too frequently but it is a good traffic magnet. If you're AOL, you need something.

UPDATE: Where else do you go to find that no, 30,000 pigs are not flowing down the Dawson river.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:39 PM | Comments (0)

January 31, 2011

Why are We Paying for This Again?

Professor Mankiw embeds a ten minute PBS Religion and Ethics video in which he appears. And, yes, he looks dashing, Had I been interviewed, you can bet I'd've posted it.

But the topic is tax fairness. And it examines religious values vis-a-vis taxation. It's tedious and awful, though I should credit them for putting Mankiw and Pete Werner on to present the non Communist side of the argument.

But the Elephant in the room is all the tax money they have taken from the rich, not to spend on the poor, but to produce this ten minutes of drivel. The free market is clearly capable of producing more and better drivel without subsidy. And without seething contempt for the state of Alabama.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:29 PM | Comments (0)

January 25, 2011

How did they know, before there was any evidence?

...That the Arizona shooting was the TEA party's fault? "I wouldn't want to jump to conclusions by not accusing them."

I'll be a lazy blogger today and just share this pointed and incredibly sarcastic xtranormal vid.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:46 PM | Comments (1)
But AlexC thinks:

This is brilliant. Thanks for sharing.

Posted by: AlexC at January 25, 2011 4:00 PM

Quote of the Day

Bret Stephens, giving props to Keith Olberman:

All this matters in an era in which the greatest threat to public discourse isn't "incivility," as was so preposterously claimed after Tucson. Just compare the tedium of U.S. congressional debate with the rapier exchanges in Britain's House of Commons, the catcalling in Israel's Knesset, or the fist-fights in Taiwan's parliament.

Rather, the real threat is Good Morning America-style niceness, USA Today-style consensus-seeking, all-round squeamishness when it comes to words like "Islam," the political masquerade of "news analysis" from papers like the New York Times, and so on. In today's media landscape, audiences are being presented with a choice between voices who are honest (at least about their biases) but not objective, and those who claim to be objective but are rarely honest. Not surprisingly, Americans increasingly prefer the former.


Posted by John Kranz at 10:27 AM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Interesting take on this: niceness gets you killed, but on the other hand, Cloward-Piven (Piven being in the news this week for favoring violent uprisings of the indolent class) is pragmatically effective. That old football saw about "the best defense is a strong offense" brought to life, as it were.

Yes, I'm aware the quotation is about offensive words rather than offensive action, but just carrying that out to its logical extreme. How about a bumper sticker that says "Niceness Kills"?

Posted by: Keith Arnold at January 25, 2011 12:49 PM
But jk thinks:

...then ThreeSourcers will all live a long and healthy life!

Put me down as a No for the new civility. We differ. We have a Constitution that allows us to differ. Let us disagree without being disagreeable. I dread the SOTU more than usual tonight (I might go fishing with Justice Scalia).

Let them sit in opposition to collective ideas. I got no problem with that.

Posted by: jk at January 25, 2011 1:13 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Would it be uncivil of me to refer to it this year, as I did last year, as the STFU address?

Posted by: Keith Arnold at January 25, 2011 7:54 PM

January 7, 2011

"Quite a contrast to they way they treated me."

If you have six minutes, watch Juan Williams's interview (on FOX) about the firing of Ellen Weiss, who fired him.

If you don't, read Ann Althouse's summary.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:44 AM | Comments (0)

December 30, 2010

Ridicule Them!

I have not been sure how to respond to Ezra Klein. He is on video and in the WaPo promulgating his gravely mistaken views of Constitutional principles.

Blog friend SugarChuck comes to my aid, emailing this link from Iowahawk.

Sometimes, ridicule is the only valid response.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:45 PM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Klein does have one good point. One that I wondered all by my poor little ol' 2.97 GPA engineering school self: What difference does the GOP think a Constitutionality citation will make? The clause from Obamacare will just be applied to everything: "It's the commerce clause, stupid!"

Posted by: johngalt at January 1, 2011 6:02 PM
But jk thinks:

Not to say Klein lacks any good points. People do tend to us the Constitution when it suits and look aside when it does not (Louisiana Purchase anybody? Bueller?)

But I disagree vociferously (as would a vociferous) that the citation requirement is not a big deal. First, it will remind the 535 folks most in need of reminding that their powers are limited. Secondly, it will force a discussion.

Sure they will trot out the perfunctory (like a perfunctor) Commerce Clause, and Gouverneur Morris's preamble will be twisted into silly shapes. But opponents can cite Lopez and Madison's interpretation of "general welfare," and if the individual mandate ObamaCare® is overturned, the opinions can be mined for substantive retorts.

Not a silver bullet, but I think it is a very big deal.

Posted by: jk at January 2, 2011 10:54 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Your positive spin is appreciated. I'd rather have it than not, and the "reminder" bit is worthwhile. You'll have to excuse that my pessimistic pragmatism was showing.

Posted by: johngalt at January 2, 2011 12:04 PM

December 22, 2010

Layers and Layers of Fact Checking

CBS News airs phony cover to President Bush's book.

desision_points.jpg Whether or not it was intentional, CBS News made a poor "desision" on Sunday when it broadcast a fake cover of former President George W. Bush's new memoir, "Decision Points," during a book special.

The legacy of Murrow & Cronkite have a perfectly valid explanation: we just pull stuff off the Internet and put it up as news. Stunning.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:22 PM | Comments (0)

December 16, 2010

Say, Wha...?

This morning's Denver Post reprinted a WaPo story by Paul Farhi in which the liberal Media Matters group alleged that Fox News is biased in the matter of global warming. Apparently, Media Matters obtained a memo from Fox's Washington bureau chief, Bill Sammon, in which he directed reporters to "refrain from asserting that the planet has warmed (or cooled) in any given period without IMMEDIATELY pointing out that such theories are based upon data that critics have called into question. It is not our place as journalists to assert such notions as facts, especially as this debate intensifies."

Ari Rabin-Havt, Media Matters' head of research, said the latest e-mail showed that Fox News was attempting to create a false impression of the climate issue by giving a "fringe" minority of global-warming skeptics equal weight with those who have concluded the planet is growing warmer.


So, according to Media Matters, if you present both sides of a debate, then you're biased.

"Paging Mr. Orwell, Mr. George Orwell. Please call your office."

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 11:41 AM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

That made the WaPo afternoon political email yesterday. They truly thought this was some great smoking gun. I thought "call me when they tell their people to say something that is not true."

Posted by: jk at December 16, 2010 2:04 PM
But jk thinks:

Taranto's all-in:

What Gore and MediaMutters characterize as "bias" is precisely the opposite: a determination to be fair to all sides of a complicated controversy. That's what journalists are supposed to do. Gore and the MediaMutters munchkins aren't journalists and thus are free to be as unfair and unbalanced as they want. But as media critics, they are utterly inept, lacking the most basic understanding of the newsman's job.

Posted by: jk at December 16, 2010 3:42 PM

December 10, 2010

They did not poll ThreeSourcers...

Time Magazine. I get less upset reading The Nation or Mother Jones. Who are these people who still read it? I know they're fewer every year, but probably still 100 times Reason's circulation.

A Facebook friend is pretty proud to be in Times' smartest city:

Colorado was the only state to take two spots in the top 10. The smartest city, Boulder, is home to the University of Colorado, which probably explains the high proportion of degree holders. Five out of every six people in Boulder have attended college. Many other top-ranked schools are college towns; Ann Arbor, Mich. is home to the University of Michigan, Durham, N.C. is home to Duke, and Washington has a handful of universities within city limits.

The criterion, for those stupidheads outside of Boulder and Larimer Counties who have not guessed by now, is education: "Portfolio.com took education data from America's 200 largest cities before ranking them by intelligence. The main criteria? The "collective brainpower" of the citizenry -- from those who dropped out before high-school graduation to those who attained a graduate or professional degree."

So, none but the largest 200 cities can play, and education equals smartz. And you add it all up and it's news. The next article down was "TIME Technology: Chatroulette, Justin Bieber and Haiti: Google's 2010 Year in Search." Somehow catches the whole thing.

But for those of us who've met people from Boulder...

Posted by John Kranz at 12:37 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Don't fret over Time Mag's circulation. Ninety percent of the copies are on autosubscribe for decorating waiting rooms across the nation. Readers probably average about 90 seconds between the covers, thus explaining the need for headlines like "Where are America's Smartest Cities" and "Where do America's Most Attractive People Live." It's eye candy for the easily amused.

Posted by: johngalt at December 10, 2010 2:30 PM

December 8, 2010

Great Use for XtraNormal

Matt Welch of Reason wondered whether the second paragraph of Thomas Friedman's column would sound better if he made an animated robot say it:

Nope.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:06 PM | Comments (0)

December 6, 2010

Quote of the Day

The Seattle Times is somehow telling me with great authority that 128 millenia ago the oceans were 1.7 degrees warmer than they are today and they can't investigate voter fraud in King County? -- Matt Holzmann
Posted by John Kranz at 11:05 PM | Comments (0)

December 2, 2010

It's called Article V

Professor Reynolds does a fine job whacking Dana Milbank today. Milbank owhines:

Republicans gained control of the House last month on a promise to "restore the Constitution." So it is no small irony that one of their first orders of business is an attempt to rewrite the Constitution.

Egads! Like when they "Rewrote the Constitution" to provide for freedom of the press!, or end slavery! Or Inaugurate the President in January! Reactionaries! Like Eric Cantor (R - VA):
But it is another Virginia Republican who has the power to turn the Repeal Amendment into a serious issue - and that is the man who holds a seat in Congress that once would have belonged to the author of the Constitution. "James Madison IS the U.S. Constitution, and he provides such a role model," Cantor said at a Constitution Day event at Montpelier a couple of years ago. "Many days, probably most, I walk by the portrait of James Madison in the hall just outside the chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives, pinching myself, wondering what I'm doing here."

Now he knows: He wants to be Madison's editor.


I'm just sore because the first Ken Buck attack ads were "he wants to rewrite the Constitution!" for a Chamber of Commerce speech two years ago. I wish he had campaigned on repealing the 17th Amendment.

I'm sure it focus-group-tested well for the campaign ads, but one might expect a little better in a WaPo editorial. Maybe?


Posted by John Kranz at 10:50 AM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

The 10th Amendment: 28 words that that bleeping moron Milbank never understood. What a goddamn tool.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at December 2, 2010 1:35 PM

November 27, 2010

Quote of the Day

U.S. / SOUTH KOREA RELATIONS: Michael Yon just got there. If I were Korean, I'd consider that a bad portent. . . . -- Glenn Reynolds
Posted by John Kranz at 10:46 AM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I hope this situation will not lead to a shooting war. That being said, it seems to me that the South Koreans are facing an ugly choice. In North Korea, you have a very hungry northern aggressor, led by a poofy-haired, mentally defective madman, who is pushing an unprovoked assault on their peaceful nation; said madman has probably a six-pack of working nukes, and is nuts enough to pull the trigger. If this conflict goes hot, the South Koreans have no reason to believe America and the Obama administration will honor our national commitments to aid in their defense, and the Red Chinese are doing nothing to rein in their proxies. Their choices may come down to (A) facing the Norks alone, or (B) becoming their vassals.

It says something when nearly three-quarters of their population is prepared to go to war if there is another unprovoked attack, in light of this reality.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 27, 2010 6:07 PM
But jk thinks:

One again, we find ourselves missing President Clinton who suggested wiping the country off the map.

Sorry to take it lightly, but I expect we will once again buy them off, and the poor North Koreans can go back to privation and darkness until Junior abdicates.

Posted by: jk at November 28, 2010 10:20 AM

November 23, 2010

Leon Kass, Call Your Office!

A Sponsored link on Facebook:

pet_pacemaker.gif

Excuse me? The link goes to Denver Channel 7 news, which (so far) says "This is a placeholder for Pet Pacemaker."

Yeah, I gave Rover a Kidney -- he's a good boy!

Posted by John Kranz at 5:09 PM | Comments (5)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Kidney? My dogs prefer giblets.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 23, 2010 5:24 PM
But Terri thinks:

If I didn't know you better I'd this sounded a little snarky about where people are choosing to spend their money and um parts.....But I know you better.

Posted by: Terri at November 24, 2010 12:12 PM
But jk thinks:

They still have not posted this story. I am genuinely intrigued. If it is an expensive human pacemaker, I am all for it (they'll probably start making them for 69.99 if this transpires). If it is actually transplanting human tissue, even I'm a bit queasy.

Posted by: jk at November 24, 2010 1:04 PM
But Terri thinks:

Here you go. I heard the teaser about it for the news last night.
They've been doing these for awhile now.

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/25610263/detail.html

Posted by: Terri at November 24, 2010 5:44 PM
But jk thinks:

Yup, cool. And as advertised.

Posted by: jk at November 24, 2010 6:55 PM

November 19, 2010

The Online News War

The newspaper business is clearly caught in a conundrum between providing free online content and making enough money to operate a business. That is ostensibly why the Denver Post and other Colorado newspapers recently threatened a local political blog with "injunctive relief" action if they fail to "cease and desist from any and all unauthorized literal copying..."

It seems the blog had a "gentlemen's agreement" not to exerpt more than two paragraphs from a story it linked, but routinely lifted as many as eight paragraphs.

A ThreeSources post this brazen is indeed rare. If you wanted to "whole thing, read, now" you'd click through, right?

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:01 PM | Comments (5)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

This is like the Righthaven shakedown. At what point did newspapers discover there was more money to be had in copyright lawsuits than in publishing a newspaper?

In the movie "Get Shorty," Harry Zimm (Gene Hackman) says "I once asked this literary agent what kind of writing paid the best. He said, 'Ransom notes.'" Clearly, he wasn't far wrong; extortion letters from lawyers are probably closely related.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 19, 2010 5:37 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Consider these famous words: "This telecast is copyrighted by the NFL for the private use of our audience. Any other use of this telecast or of any pictures, descriptions, or accounts of the game without the NFL's consent, is prohibited."

So I'm standing at the water cooler Tuesday morning with my partner who missed the previous night's Chargers game, and I am telling him about the game. Suddenly, out of nowhere, this process server appears...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 19, 2010 5:45 PM
But jk thinks:

Righthaven. You can ruin my day with one word. I got the forms all filled and am ready to send my $105 Goram dollars in. I can list other sites for $30 each -- anybody want in for their blogs?

Posted by: jk at November 20, 2010 11:07 AM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

JK: There's an add-on for the Firefox browser called BlockSite that I've installed, and set it up to prevent me from accidentally visiting any Righthaven websites. Cheap insurance. You can't quote what you don't see.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 20, 2010 11:38 AM
But jk thinks:

And I might be able to avoid their high quality media sites as well, ka. The scary part to me is the comments.

Posted by: jk at November 21, 2010 11:36 AM

November 8, 2010

Christine O'Donnell

Chris Chillizza joins Senator Jim DeMint (R - SC) in speculating that Christine O'Donnell could have won her Delaware Senate race, "had she not been so 'maligned' by the national GOP."

I'll let the pollsters slice and dice the exit polls. But I must comment on media treatment in the very post discussing her chances. The lead paragraph starts "Over the weekend South Carolina Republican Sen. Jim DeMint suggested that marketing consultant Christine O'Donnell..."

Now. I've worked as a "Marketing Consultant" and hate to come across as maligning that important field of industry BUT, clearly Chillizza is denigrating her achievements. The modifier "political newcomer" could have communicated the idea less pejoratively.

And here is the photo his editors chose to decorate the post. After a lengthy Senatorial campaign, our nation's primary political newspaper does not have a less candid image in its photo files?

odonnell.jpg

I'll answer Chillizza: yes, she could have won but it would have required a moderately balanced press. So, no, she didn't have a chance.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:29 PM | Comments (0)

November 1, 2010

Quote of the Day

To be fair, it wasn't all one-sided. Stewart & Colbert did mock both sides: conservatives and Republicans! -- Jim Treacher
Posted by John Kranz at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)

October 26, 2010

Headline of the Day

Set Tivos to Stun: Nick Gillespie on Fox News' Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld Tonight! -- Reason.com
Posted by John Kranz at 1:38 PM | Comments (0)

October 24, 2010

Response to Message #127368:

Response to Message #127368 (npr_response@npr.org):

Dear John,
Late Wednesday evening we gave Juan Williams notice that we've terminated his contract as a Senior News Analyst for NPR News. We didn't make this decision lightly or without regret. Juan has been a valuable contributor to NPR and public radio for many years.

However, his remarks on The O'Reilly Factor this past Monday violated our ethics guidelines. Unfortunately, this has occurred several times in other media. Our decision to end our contractual relationship with Juan has come after repeated conversations and warnings about some of his public comments. This was a difficult, but principled decision.

We've been contacted by listeners who have passionately agreed with our decision, as well as those who have disagreed with it, with equal conviction. We hear you both and respect your perspectives. At the same time, we believe that the public is better served by NPR holding firm to the values and standards that have guided us for many years.

As some listeners have also asked for more details about our funding, you can find a detailed overview of our funding on our website in our "About" section: http://www.npr.org/about/aboutnpr/ Of note, and as is explained in that site, NPR, Inc. has received no direct operating support from the federal government since 1983.

I recognize that this decision has sparked a strong debate in the blogosphere and elsewhere, and that you have a firm position on the matter. While we stand by our policy, we also regret that we were compelled to take the actions that we did.

Sincerely
Dana Davis Rehm
Senior Vice President, Marketing, Communications, and External Relations


Posted by John Kranz at 5:51 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

(1) No *direct" operating support from the Federal government. Technically true. See: http://www.npr.org/about/support/ Money quote: "The greatest portion of our funding comes from our stations, who in turn rely on support from their local corporate sponsors, CPB, their licensees, and others." So tax dollars go to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting first, who launders the money for NPR.

(2) Didn't make the decision without regret? Yeah, that psychiatrist-or-publicist comment was just oozing regret.

(3) NPR ethics guidelines? I'd love to see those in print. Assuming for a moment they actually exist, I'd love even more to see them applied equitably on the remainder of their on-air "talent," and I use that word very, very loosely.

(4) "Principled"? To quote Inigo Montoya: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Overall? Bloviating.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at October 25, 2010 12:20 AM
But jk thinks:

Yup, proud to be on "Team Red" this week (it's been a while since that was true).

RE: #3, I b'lieve they have volumes of Ethics Guidelines at NPR. Probably seven to ten indirectly funded workers maintain them. The problem is prosecutorial discretion -- the blogosphere is loaded with YouTube clips of outrageous comments from his peers, most of whom seem to have escaped the great ethics purge of 2010.

I got a little verklempt-in-the-gennuctozoink watching Williams on FOX News Sunday (even before your curs-ed Raiders shellacked my Broncos).

It was sad to see how truly hurt he was at the defamation and touching to see the respect and affection he engenders from the wicked, evil, child-munching, puppy-snuffing analysts at Fox.

Posted by: jk at October 25, 2010 11:09 AM
But dagny thinks:

P.S. Mostly non-sequitor: Josh McDaniels is a pinhead.

Posted by: dagny at October 25, 2010 7:06 PM

October 23, 2010

Quote of the Day

Instead, this latest incident with Williams centers around a collision of values: NPRís values emphasizing fact-based, objective journalism versus the tendency in some parts of the news media, notably Fox News, to promote only one side of the ideological spectrum. -- NPR ombudsman
Your tax dollars at work! Hat-tip: Frank J. Fleming
Posted by John Kranz at 11:11 AM | Comments (0)

October 22, 2010

Dear NPR

Blog friend SugarChuck shares his letter to NPR and asks "overly harsh?" Like I'm going to counsel caution? I asked permission to post.

Way to go NPR! Thanks for getting rid of that uber nazi Juan Williams. I knew he was a racist the second he popped up on Fox Noise. I know, those facists are all claiming that Fox Noise viewers are more tolerant of diversity than we are but why should we tolerate the wrong opinions when they are so dangerous and so un-american. Now if you could just find a reason to get rid of Maura Lyingson we could go back to have a clean, listenable network. I don't pay my tax dollars to hear people from my network jumping the fence and saying any darn thing they want to. If they aren't going to represent me and my opinions then why am I getting taxed for NPR in the first place. Kudos to your CEO for holding her fire until she saw the WHITES of Williams eyes and then letting him have it. I know she's been wanting to boot him all along. Thank the Goddess she finally found an opportunity. You NPR, are my rock, my monolith and my mirror. You are where I can go to see myself, and nothing but myself. Thank you NPR. Thank you. Now get rid of that other Fox whore.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:38 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

I just hope he included the disclaimer "sarcasm" else they'll put it in the "approve" pile. I'm sure it's tame by comparison to the rest of the love letters.

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2010 11:26 PM

Quote of the Day

Reading between the lines of Juanís statement and those of NPR officials, itís apparent that NPR was moved to fire Juan because he irritates so many people in its audience. An interesting contrast: while many NPR listeners apparently could not stomach that Williams also appeared on Fox News. But it doesnít seem that any perceptible number of Fox News viewers had any complaints that Williams also worked for NPR. The Fox audience seems to be more tolerant of diversity than the NPR audience. -- Michael Barone
Posted by John Kranz at 1:34 PM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2010

jk's Thought for the Day

Oh thank NED! I can go back to listening to NPR now that they have that bigoted Juan Williams off it. Catch you on Saturday, Garrison...
I went to the NPR website to complain (if Prof Reynolds is right and 538 angry emails can get somebody fired, I suggest firing the person who fired Williams) and saw this jewel:
Update at 3:30 p.m. ET. NPR CEO Vivian Schiller just released this statement:

"I spoke hastily and I apologize to Juan and others for my thoughtless remark."

That follows, as you'll see below, her comment earlier today that now-former NPR news analyst Juan Williams should have kept his feelings about Muslims between himself and "his psychiatrist or his publicist."

Our original post:

Fired NPR news analyst Juan Williams should have kept his feeling about Muslims between himself and "his psychiatrist or his publicist," the network's CEO told an audience at the Atlanta Press Club earlier today.


Your tax dollars at work, America!


Posted by John Kranz at 5:18 PM | Comments (0)

October 19, 2010

How Much for Your Vote?

I'm putting this under "Media and Blogging" because even the Associated Press leads with what a transparent vote buying attempt this is:

WASHINGTON Ė Democrats are making a pre-election pitch to give Social Security recipients a one-time payment of $250, part of a larger effort to convince senior voters that their party, and not Republicans, will best look out for the 58 million people who get the government retirement and disability benefits.

Maybe if they throw in a pack of cigarettes...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)

October 2, 2010

Get Outta Town!

Post formally endorses Hickenlooper for Governor.

Damn, who could've seen that coming?

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:10 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

I didn't see Intrade numbers on it...

Posted by: jk at October 2, 2010 11:08 AM

October 1, 2010

Great Posts I Missed Working

Not gonna spoil it. If you missed this one from blog friend Terri this week (as I did), click here.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:44 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Damn, do I miss Firefly...

Posted by: johngalt at October 2, 2010 9:17 AM
But terri thinks:

I haven't ordered it myself yet, but this fan movie has Joss's seal of approval.
http://browncoatsmovie.com/

Posted by: terri at October 3, 2010 9:19 AM

September 20, 2010

The end of a perncious lie and completion of a poem

The jewel of the Internets as I see it today is Eric Scheie's clarification of Isaac Asimov's "All Four Stanzas." I remain a big fan of Asimov and Francis Scott Key ("Frank" was Chief Justice Taney's brother-in-law and childhood friend, and was auditioning in my head for narrating my historical fiction novel on Dred Scott v Sandford).

Nick Gillespie trawls the Tea Parties trying to make a patriot admit that "Our National Anthem is a terrible song." Fie on those Libertoids I say! Libertario Delenda Est!

And yet (easy cowboy), Scheie was not ready to sign onto the jingoistic chain emails that misrepresented Asimov's far-more-nuanced nationalism. If I can give away the punch line of Scheie's piece, he coughs up six bucks for a copy of the magazine with Asimov's "All Four Stanzas." And he provides scans and OCR.

Here is the famed fourth as Asimov sings it:

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven-rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, while our cause it is just.
And this he our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner forever shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Play Ball!

Posted by John Kranz at 11:04 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Excellent! The linked article is a good read.

I'd like to see it permalinked in the sidebar. Maybe under "Documents."

Posted by: johngalt at September 20, 2010 3:50 PM

September 1, 2010

Quote of the Day

It's early but I'm going to give it to my favorite blogger (present company excepted):

What the press found superlative about its Katrina reporting was the realization ó very comforting post-RatherGate ó that if they all agreed on a storyline and pushed it, they could still move the polls despite the alternative media. That the reporting was crap didnít matter at all. -- Glenn Reynolds

Posted by John Kranz at 10:03 AM | Comments (0)

August 26, 2010

A Once Proud Newspaper

I get the WaPo Afternoon political fix email every day (all the cool kids do!) I have seen the "Palin Tracker" on there for some time. Well, it seemed that Her Grizzliness had a pretty good week, so I clicked -- for the first time.

What an odd thing it is. There's nothing offensive, or negative.

Sarah Palin has thrown her support behind more than two dozen candidates, a mixture of Tea Party favorites and more established Republican types. Use this graphic to explore her endorsements, and see how they fare.
(Updated Aug. 25)

But how odd is it that it exists? If Jon Stewart did it, I could see it. But it seems beneath the Washington Post. (I know, I date myself.)

Posted by John Kranz at 5:47 PM | Comments (1)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

That's OK, JK, I date myself as well. That way, I never get turned down.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at August 27, 2010 10:25 AM

August 14, 2010

Journalism Warning Labels

Mondo Heh. Hat-tip: Boingboing, via Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 11:18 AM | Comments (0)

August 10, 2010

Small, Petty Men

Small, petty men go around yelling "I told you so!" at TV stars and journalists.

Did I ever claim to anything larger?

STUDY: Driver Error in Most Toyota Crashes

Five months into an investigation of safety issues involving Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles, U.S. safety officials have yet to identify any new defects beyond those reported by the car maker itself.

And in more than half of the crashes blamed on sudden acceleration analyzed by the government, data from the vehicles' "black boxes" show the driver was not stepping on the brake at the time of the accident--indicating that driver error may have been at fault.

Those were the findings that U.S. Transportation Department officials disclosed Tuesday to members of Congress, offering the first significant details of the government's ongoing investigation into Toyota's recall of more than 8.5 million vehicles globally since last fall.


Huh. Who saw that coming? (Links would be unseemly...)

Posted by John Kranz at 7:00 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

Who saw this coming? Well, if links are declared unseemly by fiat*, then I will refrain - and instead, I'll just say this blog and everyone on it, July 13-15 of this year.

* (Not to be taken as an accusation that an Italian automaker is somehow interfering with a discussion of a Japanese automaker's products.)

Posted by: Keith Arnold at August 10, 2010 8:31 PM
But jk thinks:

Prof Reynolds offers a link to my man, PJ O'Rourke.

Posted by: jk at August 10, 2010 11:53 PM

August 8, 2010

Dear Instapundit

Elvis Costello released a great album where he composed songs around letters to Juliet. Lovelorn types mail passionate missives to the city of Verona. Costello acquired some and made a very good record.

I wondered about the potential deracination of a human being mailing a letter to a character in a 500 year old play. I'm romantic enough to write one but putting postage on it? Mailing it to Verona?

Then again, I email Instapundit probably once a month. Today's was inspired by his link, and lengthy excerpt, to a Nick Gillespie rant on debt and subsidies:

Professor Reynolds:

I am a long time Reason subscriber and a huge fan of His Jacketedness, Nick Gillespie.

But everytime you link to one of Reason's "OMG Obama is not a free marketer" posts, I wonder how you can avoid a little bit of "who the rubes are."

Reason went all in against Senator McCain (which is fair and appropriate) but they went very very easy on then Senator Obama. Folks who were paying attention -- and I put you in the camp -- saw about everything we bought last November. Last August.

Reason's great but I don't think they deserve to be let of the hook so easily.

Thanks fer listenin' and keep up the awesome work.

jk


Posted by John Kranz at 10:56 AM | Comments (0)

August 2, 2010

Quote of the Day

And I thought I was hard on "Our Margeret:"

Oh Peggy, Peggy. What is to be done with her? She writes in the WSJ to distance herself from the Tea Party, those enthusiastic women with large breasts in tight T-shirts and more alarmingly those men with large breasts in tight T-shirts, waving signs that say "Taxed Enuf!" or "We The People!" America is such a hard place to be an aspiring to be upper class Republican. If you were really upper class, you would be living off your great grandfather's buttonhook fortune and working on remodeling your barn for your darling Arabians. But poor Peggy like so many of us was not to the manor born and so has to convince her true audience that she is absolutely nothing like those white people waving signs. This is not all bad. The ferocious desire of the upper middle class to be truly upper class is one of the engines of American greatness. It's just too bad we don't have a Queen who could make her Lady Patricia of Potomac so she could just go away and be quiet and stop troubling us with her confusions. Peggy, my advice is, just give yourself permission to be a Democrat. It's OK. We understand. You think we're grubby, noisy, ill educated and don't know our place, and we think you're a pompous, posing RINO who wishes she were Patricia Harriman and isn't. So let's just agree to disagree. -- Tom Smith

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 10:42 AM | Comments (0)

July 29, 2010

That Wouldn't Be a Keynesian Multiplier...

Deepest congrats to ThreeSources friend The Everyday Economist:

Blogging will be light of the next couple of days as Mrs. Economist and I welcomed our second little boy into the world yesterday. Baby and mom are doing great.

Five days later, however, he posts an awesome and highly recommended exegesis on whether unemployment benefits are stimulative

Posted by John Kranz at 5:08 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

One more free-market protege. Keep 'em comin'!

Posted by: johngalt at July 30, 2010 12:44 AM
But mdmhvonpa thinks:

CONGRATS!

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at July 30, 2010 11:02 AM

July 28, 2010

The Sire's new digs

I mentioned it in a hat-tip, but this is post-worthy!

The Galley Slaves is now Jonathan Last Online

Looks good. I will update the blogroll.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:55 PM | Comments (0)

Metaphorical Defenestration

Matt Labash metaphorically puts JournoLister Spencer Ackerman through a metaphoric plate glass window.

WAIT! If, like me, you know Ackerman only through his loony ravings on paper, prep yourself by getting to know the real man himself. Click on over to my sire's new digs and view a not-quite-brief-enough encounter with the real Spense.

Now, onto La Bash

The glass alley symbolizes what Hackerman will put your head through, just as soon as heís done tweeting about one of his favorite bands, Burzum, because they are BAD ASS. Theyíre kind of like the Attackermans of Norweigan black metal, showing early Tolkien influences since as their Facebook page stipulates, ďBurzumĒ means ďdarknessĒ in the black speech of Mordor. The fact that Attackerman is pants-less means heís flashing you his knob. Because thatís what knobs do: put their dickhood on display.

Iím not a dream interpretation expert, of course. You might want to run this by Hackerman himself. Though he doesnít seem to be answering many questions lately, not since his Journolist bleatings were released.


Ow. That has gotta hurt.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:43 PM | Comments (0)

Change the Blog Name?

I hate to abandon Sharansky, but look what is available:

nascarretardsdotcom.jpg

UPDATE: I bought it. I am not certain what to do with it (I will point it toward ThreeSources for now) but I can see some great logo designs... Anybody wants an email account let me know.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:56 PM | Comments (6)
But T. Greer thinks:

I am curious as to how you came across the domain name in the first place.

Posted by: T. Greer at July 28, 2010 7:11 PM
But jk thinks:

From the JournoList archives:
-------------------
LAURA ROZEN: People we no longer have to listen to: would it be unwise to start a thread of people we are grateful we no longer have to listen to? If not, I’ll start off: Michael Rubin.

MICHAEL COHEN, NEW AMERICA FOUNDATION: Mark Penn and Bob Shrum. Anyone who uses the expression ‚ÄúReal America.‚ÄĚ We should send there ass to Gitmo!

JESSE TAYLOR, PANDAGON.NET: Michael Barone? Please?

LAURA ROZEN: Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich (afraid it’s not true), Drill Here Drill Now, And David Addington, John Yoo, we’ll see you in court?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, THE NEW YORKER: As a side note, does anyone know what prompted Michael Barone to go insane?

MATT DUSS: LEDEEN.

SPENCER ACKERMAN: Let’s just throw Ledeen against a wall. Or, pace Dr. Alterman, throw him through a plate glass window. I’ll bet a little spot of violence would shut him right the fuck up, as with most bullies.

JOE KLEIN, TIME: Pete Wehner…these sort of things always end badly.

ERIC ALTERMAN, AUTHOR, WHAT LIBERAL MEDIA: Fucking Nascar retards…
----------------------
I just thought it would be a good blog name. Maybe I hould get out more...

Posted by: jk at July 28, 2010 7:22 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Y not "f******nascarretards.com?" Hey, if respected journalists can say it...

Can you even imagine the self loathing it requires to define your intelligence by how stupid you think "the other" is?

Posted by: johngalt at July 29, 2010 10:31 AM
But jk thinks:

I think all those stars would mess up DNS, jg.

Is this a lot worse than Ann Coulter or Glenn Beck?

Posted by: jk at July 29, 2010 12:10 PM
But jk thinks:

Or me going after the Dalai Lama?

Posted by: jk at July 29, 2010 12:12 PM
But johngalt thinks:

In public discourse (yes, even in limited distribution like 'Journolist') using the F-bomb is the equivalent of invoking Hitler - your argument is lost.(IMHO)

I don't recall hearing or reading a single F-bomb from Beck or Coulter (or you.)

Posted by: johngalt at July 29, 2010 12:46 PM

July 21, 2010

Quote of the Day

so many of you still seem tied down to your old ideological moorings. on the early evidence obama is not similarly tied down on any level, whether diplomatically or economically (or politically: note his big-tent approach to joe lieberman). a post-ideological presidency ó what a novelty, and what a relief! but this new obamian world view, i fear, also puts many of you who are part of this group in danger of imminent irrelevance. cheers, mike hirsh -- Michael Hirsh, Newsweek

Journolist -- Christmas pales in comparison...

Posted by John Kranz at 8:47 PM | Comments (0)

July 20, 2010

Quote of the Day


I do not endorse a Popular Front, nor do I think you need to. Itís not necessary to jump to Wright-qua-Wrightís defense. What is necessary is to raise the cost on the right of going after the left. In other words, find a rightwingerís [sic] and smash it through a plate-glass window. Take a snapshot of the bleeding mess and send it out in a Christmas card to let the right know that it needs to live in a state of constant fear. Obviously I mean this rhetorically. -- Spencer Ackerman, then of the Washington Independent

This from a stunning expose of JournoList's complicity in orchestrating an Obama victory in 2008 that runs in The Daily Caller today.

Hat-tip: Andrew Breitbart who says "American journalism died a long time ago; today Tucker Carlson got around to running the obituary."


Posted by John Kranz at 10:33 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

So this is how we got "Hope and Change" -

‚ÄúPart of me doesn‚Äôt like this shit either,‚ÄĚ agreed Spencer Ackerman, then of the Washington Independent. ‚ÄúBut what I like less is being governed by racists and warmongers and criminals.‚ÄĚ

It's hard to imagine a bone-fide racist actually managing to survive in today's GOP, but their ranks in the Democrat party are legion. "Warmongers and criminals?" Both parties are pretty much guilty on those.

I also liked Kevin Drum's [Washington Monthly] observation on attacking the right as "racists:"

"After all, why vote for him if it turns out he’s not going change the way politics works?"

Posted by: johngalt at July 21, 2010 2:53 PM

July 8, 2010

Awesome piece in HuffPo Today

Holy two day performance seminar, Batman! I'm gone for 48 hours and the world has gotten all catawampus.

Prof Reynolds links to a superb piece in the Huffing Post today. Based on the lede paragraph, I'm guessing Matt Ridley is about my age:

When I was a student, in the 1970s, the world was coming to an end. The adults told me so. They said the population explosion was unstoppable, mass famine was imminent, a cancer epidemic caused by chemicals in the environment was beginning, the Sahara desert was advancing by a mile a year, the ice age was retuning, oil was running out, air pollution was choking us and nuclear winter would finish us off. There did not seem to be much point in planning for the future. I remember a fantasy I had - that I would make my way to the Hebrides, off the west coast of Scotland, and live off the land so I could survive these holocausts at least till the cancer got me.

Ridley has written a book suggesting that if 180 years of gloom and doomers have not been right, perhaps today's crew might be mistaken as well:
I got back to 1830 and still the sentiment was being used. In fact, the poet and historian Thomas Macaulay was already sick of it then: `We cannot absolutely prove that those are in error who tell us that society has reached a turning point, that we have seen our best days. But so said all before us, and with just as much apparent reason.' He continued: `On what principle is it that, when we see nothing but improvement behind us, we are to expect nothing but deterioration before us.'

Indeed.


I guess I will go read the Nation and Utne Reader now. I'll get back to you with all their keen insights.

UPDATE: Linkee fixee much patience for appreciation.is.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:57 AM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Broken is link. Please is to be fixed it.

Posted by: johngalt at July 8, 2010 2:09 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:

Oh, thankyouThankYouTHXU!! I've been trying to state this for years... now if I can just remember to whom.... hmmm...

nb

Posted by: nanobrewer at July 11, 2010 10:56 AM
But jk thinks:

Yes, nb, The Huffington Post is just chock full'o keen isights...

Posted by: jk at July 12, 2010 8:20 PM

June 30, 2010

Caption of the Day

The Photo:
greek_debtors.jpg

The Caption:
Greek debtors discussing repayment terms.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:44 AM | Comments (4)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

That police officer in the foreground - the one preparing to exit, stage left - has a good counteroffer to the bid that the debtors have put on the table. For some unknown reason, the officer has chosen to leave that counteroffer, unused, in its holster.

In my experience, it's a take-it-or-leave-it kind of counteroffer, but it IS usually persuasive.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at June 30, 2010 11:38 AM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Clearly the protestors are intolerant of anyone, especially public employees on duty, doing The Robot so badly.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 30, 2010 12:31 PM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I don't get it. Here we have a police officer with a riot helmet, a face shield, heavy boots, shin guards, tactical gloves, what I'm assuming is at least a 9mm on his right hip, and whatever else is in his various and sundry pockets and belt clips - fleeing in terror from two unprotected, skinny emos armed with nothing more than what looks like a wooden closet rod (tied with a pretty lavender bow!) and a flag from my junior-high cheerleading squad. At the very least, taze them, bro.

Unless the constable has just realized he's standing in the field of fire of a partner off-camera who's about to open a can of full-auto whoopass on the emos, I'm revoking his man card.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at June 30, 2010 1:31 PM
But johngalt thinks:

No way man, he's just bucking for a medal!

Posted by: johngalt at June 30, 2010 2:44 PM

June 25, 2010

Clearly, I Was Wrong

Mea Maxima Culpa and all that, I suggested that:

Media Rushes To The Defense Of Nobel Prize-Winning Sex Poodle
Would enjoy a spot of Headline for the Day for "a few days." Then, I look at my Yahoo Page and see:
Naked gunman on I-80 causes chaos in Wyoming

Prediction is such a suckers' game.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:05 PM | Comments (0)

Dramatization

Our Taiwanese friends turn to animation to explain the allegations against VP Gore.

My word... HT: @bdomenech

Posted by John Kranz at 2:45 PM | Comments (1)
But Keith Arnold thinks:

My gosh, I will never be able to get those images off my cortex - not without a paint scraper and a good heat gun, anyway.

As an aside, I would never in my life have described Gore as "animated." He was always as wooden as a hitching post. The joke always was that he made his Secret Service detail look lively by comparison. At long last - the ManBearPig episode of South Park notwithstanding - Gore is, in fact, animated.

If you need me, I'll be at the hardware store, in search of two gallons of brain bleach.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at June 25, 2010 4:17 PM

June 19, 2010

Enjoy the view, Governor

I am not going to post the picture. Y'all have seen it. Governor Crist is walking down the beach in Gubernatorial slacks and shoes, and the camera catches him glancing at a young woman in a thong bikini.

I accept that he is the antichrist to Tea Partiers and I offer my most fulsome endorsement for his opponent, Marco Rubio. But the right wing blogosphere has turned into the Christian Temperance Union. I think what started as gentle ribbing (you're not looking for baby oil, gov!) is turning into serious criticism. I say let the left and the Taliban do righteous indignation when man dare to look at woman.

The boys at Powerline look real hard to see if the photo was really taken the same day. No problem with being investigative, I suppose. To be honest, I hadn't noticed that the Governor was wearing pants, much less the color.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:20 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Agreed. For my money the more damning images of Governor Charlie Anti-Crist are the ones of him walking on the beach with President Obama. Slightly behind, in proper deference, Barack waves to the press... Charlie waves to the press. You could almost see his nose up the president's a$$.

Posted by: johngalt at June 19, 2010 11:53 AM
But Keith Arnold thinks:

I'll second that motion. Crist as Obama's sycophant, sucking up to the man whose policies are hard at work destroying America's economy, would be the more damning image - if the issue were reason and policy.

But reason is hardly the best weapon - consider the 52% on America that voted for Obama in the first place. Too many voters decide based on feeling and emotion rather than reason. The opportunists in the media - old and new - will fan whatever flames will agitate voters on their side. If an image of a leering Crist will spur outrage where they want outrage, they will use it. It would be wise for people to remember that there are plenty of players on both sides of the aisle who, as Jimmy Carter so famously put it, have lust in their hearts. It's not the most important issue.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at June 20, 2010 9:50 PM

June 18, 2010

Putting the Vanity in Vanity Fair

Penn Jillette tweets "I did this interview for Vanity Fair. He attacked me on a lot of uncomfortable stuff, but . . . I really liked him "

I'm glad he did, because I find the VF author, Eric Spitznagel, to be one of the smarmiest cats I have read in a long time. But the article is worth it because a) Penn is awesome, b) it's good to be reminded that lefties have a rightful claim to overlap on Penn and libertarianism in general. Spitznagel opens the article by sharing how upset he is at Jillette's appearance on -- wait for it -- Glenn Beck.

But oh no, my liberal friends assured me, it was nothing like that. Jillette drank the Kool-Aid and joined the Dark Side. He and Beck were like old chums, giggling about Obama's attempts at health care reform and envisioning a world where guns are available to anybody with an itchy trigger finger. As if that wasn't horrific enough, he'd also gone on Larry King to defend the Tea Party from accusations of racism. It felt weirdly like a betrayal.

I don't up my Lithium when Jillette goes on Bill Maher, but he's up to the task of intellectual battle with a VF writer. He relates the story of his fight with Tommy Smothers (but it's better to watch the PennSays video). He isn't a big fan of Beck or Keith Olbermann, but makes a nice riff on it:
But I think itís important. I may be the only person who goes on Keith Olbermann and Glenn Beck and says the exact same shit. I am so much more socially liberal than Olbermann will ever be. You canít believe how pro gay and pro freedom of speech I am. Iím way out beyond anyone on the Left. And as for fiscal conservatism and small government, Iím so much further to the right than Glenn Beck. Nobody is further left and further right than me. As Iím fond of saying, if you want to find utopia, take a sharp right on money and a sharp left on sex and itís straight ahead.

Vanity Fair has a great track record of great writers. Christopher Hitchens called it home for many years, as did Tony Blankley. Reading this guy, I think I'll pass.

UPDATE: Here's a link to the video I mentioned And this follow up I had not seen until I went hunting for the first one.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:59 PM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Wow, that's some damn vulgar discourse there. That makes it more genuine and heartfelt and "with it" right? Lost count at 6 or 7 f-bombs.

But I did agree with most of what Penn said. Except I don't agree that Glenn Beck is a "hardcore Christian show." It's hardcore Constitutionism, but the Christianity is pretty low-key. (And that's coming from a fellow atheist, Penn.) And I wouldn't believe in the kind of change Penn closed with.

Posted by: johngalt at June 18, 2010 10:06 PM
But jk thinks:

I'm with you. I'd certainly settle for heartfelt apology myself.

The second PennSays I linked to interested me. These lefties are so fragile, if we all yelled "boo!" they'd hide in their basements and we could eliminate the capital gains tax.

If I "got sick" everytime somebody I liked was on Bill Maher or Jon Stewart I'd weigh 145 pounds. Yet these folks can afford to throw their friends over the side (under the bus?) if they dare to appear on FOX. Startling.

Posted by: jk at June 19, 2010 10:08 AM
But johngalt thinks:

The second the angry left accedes any legitimacy to FNC their entire house of "consider the source" cards falls apart. Then they'd have to start debating issues with logic and reason, unless they could invent something else to replace their old stand by, ad hominem.

Posted by: johngalt at June 19, 2010 12:01 PM

Missing John Stossel

-- or, probably not.

I signed up for the ABC 20/20 weekly email spam when Stossel was on to see what libertarianism he could sneak in between celebrity sex scandals.

He, of course, has moved on to FOX Business. I should unsubscribe to the email, but it is a weekly reminder of what some people are watching to "stay caught up on current events." This week, why of course it's The Mind of Joran van der Sloot


  • Exclusive: Van der Sloot's Ex-Girlfriend on Dutch Playboy's Other Side

  • Joran's Mom Speaks

  • What Awaits Joran Van der Sloot in Jail?

  • Alexa Ray Joel Opens New Chapter With New Album


Nobody notices that the guy with the moustache who used to actually think is gone.

Hey, I just unsubscribed and it asked for a reason. "I miss John Stossel," sez I. Power to the people!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:56 PM | Comments (0)

June 17, 2010

The Road Is Uphill

Time for a good right wingnut crank rant about media bias? Good, I thought so too.

I saw this story on -- mirabile dictu -- Facebook.

WASHINGTON (AFP) Ė A senior US lawmaker apologized Wednesday to BP chief Tony Hayward for what he described as a White House "shakedown" that led the firm to create a 20-billion-dollar Gulf of Mexico oil spill fund.

"I'm ashamed of what happened in the White House yesterday," Republican Representative Joe Barton told Hayward as the embattled energy giant's top executive faced his first public grilling by angry US lawmakers.

"I apologize," said the Texas representative. "It is a tragedy of the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown, in this case, a 20-billion-dollar shakedown."


The poster says "OMG. Actually holding someone accountable and this idiot is apologizing for it? What a pussy... You can tell where he gets his campaign contributions from!!"

I followed his link to a local news site report. and was pretty unsurprised to see no context, nuance, or clarification. The AP story I excerpted just hit my Yahoo/AP feed. Surely they would do better. Yeah right.

The poster is not interested in clarification so I won't bother. But how are the forces of light going to get their message out when the forces of darkness own the airwaves?

Posted by John Kranz at 2:43 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

This deserves its own post but time is money...

Chicago Tribune's Steve Chapman says "As the Spill Expands, So Does Presidential Power."

David Pettit of the Natural Resources Defense Council, which is not exactly an apologist for polluters, says the pitch from Senate Democrats to BP is: "We'd like you to escrow $20 billion, with a 'b', and we'll take over claims processing. So we'll write the checks, and it will be your money that backs them up, and you're out of the loop. If I were BP, I'd have some problems with that."

Bypass longstanding legal procedures that protect everyone in favor of granting unchecked discretion to the president? BP is not the only one that should have some problems with that.

Posted by: johngalt at June 17, 2010 3:27 PM
But jk thinks:

Nice link. I always thought of Chapman as "a Reason guy" but it's the same dude.

The WSJ had a perfect editorial on it a few days ago as well as a Holman Jenkins column.

But who's gonna read that p***y stuff? The AP and the TeeVee news have spoken: some mean old Republican doesn't think BP should pay the "little people

Posted by: jk at June 17, 2010 4:03 PM

June 10, 2010

jk [Heart] Glenn Beck II

SOLD OUT OF HAYEK: ďI just got off the phone with Stephanie Hlywak of the U. of Chicago Press and itís official ó the U. of Chicago Press is SOLD OUT of copies of Friedrich Hayekís classic The Road to Serfdom after selling over 13,000 copies in less than 24 hours, after the broadcast of Glenn Beckís show on Hayek and his timeless book.Ē -- Glenn Reynolds
My Brother-in-law called and told me to watch (I didn't). Both John Stossel and Gregory Mankiw have also highlighted the effect on sales. Still not my cup of tea, but I can't say anything bad about a guy who puts Hayek on top of the charts.
Posted by John Kranz at 5:45 PM | Comments (1)
But nanobrewer thinks:


His show on the progressives was a bit over the top, but extremely well researched and historically accurate (major kudos, in this day & age).

I cannot recommend his _Common Sense_ however, to 3S'ers: it's not bad, but the word banal comes to mind. It did not grab me at all, unlike Hayek and even Levin's _Freedom & Tyranny_.

Posted by: nanobrewer at June 13, 2010 10:40 PM

June 7, 2010

All Hail Taranto!

Genius:

buffet_taranto.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 1:02 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Then again, I posted this before i saw the closing pun. Call us even, James...

Posted by: jk at June 7, 2010 1:38 PM

June 5, 2010

jk [heart] Glenn Beck

Oh that one will be turned against me very soon.

But there is one thing I like about the bellicose host, and that is his call for his viewers to learn history and technical details of the Constitution. To be honest, I have not quite squared that with the personality's personality. But there is much of show business that has always escaped me.

Amity Shlaes has a special place in my heart for her magisterial The Forgotten Man and the very nice email she sent me in thanks for a good review on ThreeSources. She has a great and important piece today in RealClearPolitics comparing University professors to medieval guilds and the opprobrium they direct at Beck to the threat to their legitimacy.

The second explanation for Beck rage however involves the guild. For unlike other hosts, who tend to pick up and drop topics, Mr. Beck has begun to develop a new canon for adults. And unlike other hosts, but indeed like a professor, Mr. Beck tends to demand a lot of his viewers. For example, he recently devoted the better part of an hour to a biography of Samuel Adams by a historian without a Ph.D., Ira Stoll, whose book highlights the revolutionary firebrand's piety. Mr. Beck breaks other tv rules. He insists viewers read books by dead men - W. Cleon Skousen's work on the Constitution, the ``5000 Year Leap." It is all a long way from "Oprah," "The Newshour" or even much of public television. Mr. Beck's broadcast was barely over when Mr. Stoll's book shot up to the highest heights of the Amazon list, where it has resided ever since. Beck-recommended books sometimes sell as well as, heaven forfend, textbooks. I had the good fortune to experience some of this after Mr. Beck talked about my Great Depression history.

You'll want to read this coast-to-coast. She airs her own problems with Beck's style, but I think she is dead on with her comparison.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:35 AM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Agreed!

And as a special bonus I read one of the most hopeful and optimistic opinions I've seen since 9?11: "They [viewers] want a coherent vision, a competing canon that the regulated airwaves and academy have denied them."

Coherent. Consistent. Knowable.

A is A. Everything is something.

She's right, but the question which remains is ... do enough voters want it.

Posted by: johngalt at June 8, 2010 3:30 PM
But johngalt thinks:

As you know, I'm re-reading Atlas Shrugged (on tape.) In this morning's reading (chapter 7 I believe) Dagny went to see Dr. Robert Stadler, once a gifted scientist and professor at the Patrick Henry University but now, titular head of the State Science Institute. She wanted to know why Stadler had allowed the Institute to promote fictitious fears about Reardon Metal.

He said, in essence, after 13 years of work at the cost of $20 million in government funding with nothing of consequence to show for it the department of metalurgical science could not allow some private individual to "revolutionize the science of metalurgy. What will the public think?" He then said, "What then shall we sacrifice? An excellent piece of smelting or the last center of science left on earth, and the whole future of human knowledge? That is the alternative!"

The prospect of Mr. Beck's success is an existential threat to "the guild" of established academia, which in great measure rests upon a single logical fallacy: Argumentum ad verecundiam."

Whole future of human knowledge? Let's make it the whole future of human prosperity, for that is what is at stake.

Posted by: johngalt at June 8, 2010 3:59 PM

June 4, 2010

Our Margaret

Read Peggy Noonan today and remember how sweet it was to read her column each week. She relates -- in the way only she can -- the story of a no-hotter she witnessed in 1983. The she finds the silver in the Galarraga--Joyce contretemps:

What was sweet and surprising was that all the principals in the story comported themselves as fully formed adults, with patience, grace and dignity. And in doing so, Galarraga and Joyce showed kids How to Do It.

Perfect.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:01 PM | Comments (0)

May 29, 2010

Nashville

Interesting footage of the Nashville flood, interspersed with quotes about the lack of media coverage and crime.

Hat-tip my (biological) brother via email. The guy who sent it to him said "it is not about 'halves' and 'have-nots', it is about 'wills' and 'will-nots.'"

Posted by John Kranz at 11:03 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

But we hear about every upper midwest flood like it's the end of days. They handle the disaster themselves as well. I 'spect it has more to do with what else is in the news cycle than with ideological bias.

Posted by: johngalt at May 30, 2010 11:18 AM

May 25, 2010

Scare Worthy

Amazing non-reaction to the 500 SEIU Thugs story.

One thing in the back of my mind was expecting this "teenage boy" was perhaps getting a little guff in the classroom for a published magazine story that he was at home "frightened." I don't know his exact age, but suspected that his friends (and enemies) likely made a few references.

Then, today, I see this picture:

banker_protest.top.jpg

Holy Union Meeting, Batman! A good friend of this blog used to remind me that intimidation is violence when Russell Means & Co. shut down Columbus Day Parades in Denver with threats.

These guys go into every bond issue with tearful stories of "teachers and firemen." But clip this photo -- this is the face of the Public Sector unions.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:31 AM | Comments (0)

May 18, 2010

Barone Wins Bradley Prize

Congratulations to AEIís Michael Barone, who has just been named a winner of the 2010 Bradley Prize. This prestigious prize is awarded by the Bradley Foundation to individuals who exemplify the foundationís core values: ďpromotion of liberal democracy, democratic capitalism, and a vigorous defense of American institutions.Ē -- American
Posted by John Kranz at 4:22 PM | Comments (0)

May 10, 2010

Headline of the Day

Obama taps Kagan to give court historic 3rd female -- AP
Historic! Three! All at the same time! What a visionary! Where did I put that AP Barf Bag?
Posted by John Kranz at 6:04 PM | Comments (0)

May 7, 2010

Picture of the Day

Larry Kudlow showed a clip this week of Pacific Investment Management Co.ís Mohamed El-Erian and all of Kudlow's guests thought he was too pessimistic about contagion. Of course, that was before:

The Markit iTraxx Financial Index of credit-default swaps on 25 banks and insurers soared as much as 40 basis points to 223, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. The index closed at 212 basis points March 9, 2009. Swaps on Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy rose to or near all-time high levels.

Interesting and concerning. But the accompanying picture of El-Erian in the Bloomberg story was worth a thousand words or two:

elArian.gif

Posted by John Kranz at 1:29 PM | Comments (0)

May 6, 2010

Quote of the Day

But not in her circle. To Ms. [Contessa] Brewer, these are simply the sentiments of a thinking, caring, decent, fair-minded person. If you react otherwise, youíre a squinty-eyed Bubba who thinks this here country started goiní downhill (spit) since we started lettiní Veetner-mesians (spit) come in and run restaurants. Not saying they donít make good rice because they do Ďn all, but this all hereís a Christian nation. And ah say that in full reee-cog-nition of the Deism of some Founders, inasmuch you can place Deism outside of the boundíry of angnostercism and link it to yer monotheistic assumptions. -- James Lileks
"Veetner-mesians" only Lileks. Hat-tip: Instapundit
Posted by John Kranz at 10:18 AM | Comments (0)

April 22, 2010

Paraphrase of the Day

The actual quote from Jonah Goldberg's column in yesterday's NRO piece is too long and buries the money phrase. To paraphrase:

...dissent has gone from being the highest form of patriotism under George W. Bush to the most common form of racism under Barack Obama.

Gordon Glantz, please call your office.

To see the full quote in context, go here.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 3:40 PM | Comments (3)
But jk thinks:

Okay, I'll bite: Gordon Glantz?

Posted by: jk at April 22, 2010 4:09 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Gordon Glantz is the managing editor of The Times Herald that LM refered to, and smacked down, in the "Teabaggers Explained" post below. Worth the read and here's the link: http://www.timesherald.com/articles/2010/04/18/opinion/columnists/doc4bca8357242a0745728550.txt

You really have to sit up and pay attention in Three Sources country!

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at April 22, 2010 4:16 PM
But jk thinks:

Hockey Man -- gotchya!

Posted by: jk at April 22, 2010 4:36 PM

April 20, 2010

Truth in Media (no, REALLY)

Just when you thought it wasn't safe to consume any establishment media news product comes this in US News and World Report: Global Warming, Ethanol, DDT and Environmentalismís Dark Side

Those who question global warming alarmistsí claims and policy prescriptions have been compared to holocaust deniers. Yet what are we to call environmentalists whose policies have resulted in the deaths of millions and could exacerbate poverty and hunger? The movie title Not Evil, Just Wrong may be too charitable.

Snap! Now that's what I call 'Hope and Change' in the news business. How did this happen? The story was written by Carrie Lukas, VP of Policy and Economics at the Independent Women's Forum (because "All issues are women's issues.") Their mission:

The Independent Women's Forum is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and educational institution. Founded in 1992, IWF focuses on issues of concern to women, men, and families. Our mission is to rebuild civil society by advancing economic liberty, personal responsibility, and political freedom. IWF builds support for a greater respect for limited government, equality under the law, property rights, free markets, strong families, and a powerful and effective national defense and foreign policy. IWF is home to some of the nation's most influential scholarsówomen who are committed to promoting and defending economic opportunity and political freedom.

OK, sounds good so far. They may have been founded in 1992 but it's hard to believe this has been their mission all along. I think JK'd have linked 'em by now! ;) Better late than never though.

UPDATE: Here's the link to the entire US N&WR entry and not just the excerpt on balanced-ed.org. It's an editorial. Oh well, the flicker of hope felt really good for those few minutes. Still check out iwf.org though.

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:16 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

In my defense, I have linked to the filmmakers several times.

Posted by: jk at April 20, 2010 4:07 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I don't think iwf.org is affiliated with 'Not Evil, Just Wrong' but I could be wrong, not evil too.

Posted by: johngalt at April 20, 2010 5:23 PM

April 11, 2010

"Capitalism is the only truth that keeps the nation healthy and fed."

I happened upon this on FNC's Huckabee show yesterday and have to share it, now and for posterity.

Actor Jon Voight, one year the junior of my 'mad-as-hell over the state of American governance father' uses his interview on the show as a platform for a ranting expose against the sitting President of the United States, except that he isn't ranting - he's sober as a judge and serious as a heart attack.


Hat Tip: Marc Schenker at Associated Content who gives a thorough review of the letter and its presentation. Special recognition for the word "Bailoutpalooza."

UPDATE: [12APR 12:38 MDT] I checked google news to see if any other media outlets were talking about the Voight letter. You can see all four related stories here. But you can't see the original story that I HT'ed anymore. Apparently AssociatedContent.com has blackballed it. And earlier today the original author, Marc Schenker, posted another story revealing the censorship. Of course that posting gets "The content you're looking for has been removed" treatment as well. But google saw it before it was yanked.

Associated Content Censored My Accurate Reporting on Voight's Criticism of Obama Associated Content - Marc Schenker - ‎19 hours ago‎ today. As some of you have read, my article of today ACCURATELY REPORTED on Jon Voight's criticism of Barack Obama, which was delivered on Mike Huckabee's ...

Is this a genuine case of internet censorship? Anyone know how to access the google cache pages?

AssociatedContent.com "is an open content network. AC's platform enables anyone to participate in the new content economy by publishing content on any topic, in any format (text, video, audio and images), and connects that content to consumers, partners and advertisers."

Apparently some content is less equal than others.

Mega hat tip: The patriot who youtubed the Huckabee appearance - "DouggieJ." It may only be a matter of hours before youtube blows him away too.

Note: As of this UPDATE, the video has 18,458 views (compared to 196,251 who viewed 'Obama can't name any ChiSox players?')

Posted by JohnGalt at 12:34 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

I dunno man. It's nice to hear a Hollywood cat talk up capitalism, but I think rape and poison are over the top.

Posted by: jk at April 11, 2010 3:27 PM
But johngalt thinks:

A more appropriate word may be found than rape but poison is precisely correct: "Giving them the idea that they are entitled to take from the wealthier who have lived and worked in a democracy that understands that capitalism is the only truth that keeps a nation healthy and fed." [pointed glare]

Keep swallowing that and, when you run out of the wealthy, you're dead.

Posted by: johngalt at April 11, 2010 6:00 PM

April 7, 2010

Must See TV!

Taranto on Kudlow. You have 11 minutes. Wait a minute, you don't have Kudlow set to TiVo? Huh waa?

Posted by John Kranz at 6:47 PM | Comments (0)

March 28, 2010

Missing the Point

Roughly a year after inauguration of America's most radically leftist president in history, in the wake of a year of grassroots outrage popularly monikered TEA Parties, a pair of "documentary filmmakers and political activists" formed "an alternative to the Tea Party Movement" - the "Coffee Party USA."

By failing to notice the capitalization of all three letters in the word TEA the authors of the linked Wikipedia entry, and likely the Coffee Party USA organizers themselves, fail to recognize that the TEA Party phenomenon is not just about dumping tea into a metaphorical government harbor - it's about being Taxed Enough, Already!

But it isn't just the name that Coffee Statists have wrong, it's the philosophy.

Its mission states that it is based on the underlying principle that the government is "not the enemy of the people, but the expression of our collective will, and that we must participate in the democratic process in order to address the challenges we face as Americans."

TEA Partiers participate in the democratic process but since there is no such thing as "collective will" outside the writings of Karl Marx they seek to address the challenges we face as individual Americans. Today, more than ever before, productive Americans are challenged by a government that forcibly confiscates individual earnings in the name of "helping the people." Unfortunately, they do the former much more efficiently than the latter.

So what does COFFEE stand for? While waiting for the founders to enlighten us we can at least offer our own interpretations. Mine is 'Confiscate Ownership Freedom From Every Entrepreneur.'

Posted by JohnGalt at 12:07 PM | Comments (5)
But terri thinks:

Funny how that philosophy is only official when the new coffee party's side is in office.

Posted by: terri at March 29, 2010 9:12 AM
But HB thinks:

I couldn't help but to be reminded of the introduction of Milton Friedman's Capitalism and Freedom:

"In a much quote passage in his inaugural address, President Kennedy said, 'Ask not what your country can do for you -- ask what you can do for your country.' It is a striking sign of the temper of our times that the controversy about this passage centered on it origin and not on its content. Neither half of the statement expresses a relation between the citizen and his government that is worthy of the ideals of free men in a free society. The paternalistic 'what your country can do for you' implies that government is the patron, the citizen the ward, a view that is at odds with the free man's belief in his own responsibility for his own destiny. The organismic, 'what you can do for your country' implies that government is the master or the deity, the citizen, the servant or the votary. To the free man, the country is the collection of individuals who compose it, not something over and above them. He is proud of a common heritage and loyal to common traditions. But he regards government as a means, an instrumentality, neither a grantor of favor and gifts, nor a master or god to be blindly worshipped and served....

...He will ask rather 'What can I and my compatriots do through government' to help us discharge our individual responsibilities, to achieve our several goals and purposes, and above all, to protect our freedom?"

THIS is the issue that divides the two groups.

Posted by: HB at March 29, 2010 1:21 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Well said, Milton, and excellent segue HB.

A contemporary free-market reprise of the JFK line might be: "Ask not what your country can do for you -- ask how your country can leave you alone."

I repeatedly lament a "progressive" public education establishment shaped by John Dewey and others that gave us the baby boomer do gooders who now claim to run things "for the public good." This Kennedy quote is a reminder that the collectivist ethos has infected all of civil society for a very long time.

Posted by: johngalt at March 29, 2010 2:59 PM
But T. Greer thinks:

A bit late on this one, but here it goes.

My problem with Friedman's piece is that he makes an assumption I am uncomfortable with - the automatic jump from "country" to "government".

This does not make much sense to me. A country is much, much more than the state that governs it. It is a group of people, a stake of land, a collection of traditions, and the state that tries to govern it all. Thus where Friedman reads, "Ask not what your government can do for you - as what you can do for your government", I read "Ask not what your society can do for you - ask what you can do for your society". Or perhaps "your community". Even "your civilization".

And to be honest, I do not think those latter sentences are half so bad. Then again, I a am bit more on the communitarian side than most you folks...

Posted by: T. Greer at March 31, 2010 8:00 AM
But jk thinks:

We're working tg like a blogging dog today.

Were we France or Germany, I'd agree. Ein Volk and all. But I object to your objection. America is not a race or a people or a piece of dirt, it's an idea and that idea is expressed in *gasp* a free government.

Yup, letters == bad...

Posted by: jk at March 31, 2010 11:26 AM

March 25, 2010

Yay!

Yahoo/AP:

WASHINGTON Ė Once again, a stubborn Senate Republican is blocking speedy passage of a stopgap bill to extend jobless benefits, saying its $9 billion cost should not be added to the national debt.

They say it like it's a bad thing...

Posted by John Kranz at 7:24 PM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2010

CODE RED Rally in D.C. via Cell Phone Vid

This is cool! Tania Gail of PAWaterCooler.com is going to the Capitol rally today and she's posting live video clips to her website via cell phone. If you click on the image it links to her qik.com page which shows a google map of her location when the video was recorded.

11 minutes ago she posted this clip. "Holy cow, people are coming!"

Posted by JohnGalt at 11:48 AM | Comments (0)

March 8, 2010

Errata

NYTimes Corrections, courtesy of Gregg Easterbrook

New York Times Corrections on Fast-Forward: In the past six months, the Times has, according to its own corrections page, said Arizona borders Wisconsin; confused 12.7-millimeter rifle ammunition with 12.7 caliber (the latter would be a sizeable naval cannon); said a pot of ratatouille should contain 25 cloves of garlic (two tablespoons will do nicely); on at least five occasions, confused a million with a billion (note to the reporters responsible -- there are jobs waiting for you at the House Ways and Means Committee); understated the national debt by $4.2 trillion (note to the reporter responsible -- there's a job waiting for you at the Office of Management and Budget); confused $1 billion with $1 trillion (note to the reporter responsible -- would you like to be CEO of AIG?); admitted numerical flaws in a story "about the ability of nonsense to sharpen the mind;" used "idiomatic deficiency" as an engineering term (correct was "adiabatic efficiency"); said Paul Revere's Midnight Ride occurred in 1776 (it was in 1775 -- by 1776, everybody knew the British were coming); "misstated the status of the United States in 1783 -- it was a country, not a collection of colonies" (dear Times, please Google "Declaration of Independence").

The Times also "misidentified the song Pink was singing while suspended on a sling-like trapeze;" confused the past 130 years with the entire 4.5 billion-year history of Earth (see appended correction here); misused statistics in the course of an article complaining that public school standards aren't high enough (see appended correction here); said Citigroup handed its executives $11 million in taxpayer-funded bonuses, when the actual amount was $1.1 billion (in the Citigroup executive suite, being off by a mere two zeroes would be considered incredible financial acumen); said a column lauding actress Terri White "overstated her professional achievements, based on information provided by Ms. White;" identified a woman as a man (it's so hard to tell these days); reported men landed on Mars in the 1970s ("there was in fact no Mars mission," the Times primly corrected).

This is the New York Times photo referred to in the correction -- that's a Plymouth Barracuda she's on -- and also, possibly, the greatest photograph of all time. The Times also gave compass coordinates that placed Manhattan in the South Pacific Ocean near the coastline of Chile (see appended correction here); said you need eight ladies dancing to enact the famous Christmas song when nine are needed; said Iraq is majority Sunni, though the majority there is Shiite (hey, we invaded Iraq without the CIA knowing this kind of thing); got the wrong name for a dog that lives near President Obama's house ("An article about the sale of a house next door to President Obama's home in Chicago misstated the name of a dog that lives there. She is Rosie, not Roxy" -- did Rosie's agent complain?); elaborately apologized in an "editor's note," a higher-level confession than a standard correction, for printing "outdated" information about the health of a wealthy woman's Lhasa apso; incorrectly described an intelligence report about whether the North Korean military is using Twitter; called Tandil, Argentina, home of Juan MartŪn del Potro, a "tiny village" (its population is 110,000); inflicted upon unsuspecting readers a web of imprecision about the Frisians, the Hapsburg Empire, the geographic extent of terps, and whether Friesland was "autonomous and proud" throughout the Middle Ages or merely until 1500; inexactly characterized a nuance of a position taken by the French Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress (philosophy majors must have marched in the streets of Paris over this); confused coal with methane (don't make that mistake in a mine shaft!); on at least three occasions, published a correction of a correction; "misstated the year of the Plymouth Barracuda on which a model dressed as a mermaid was posed;" "mischaracterized the date when New York City first hired a bicycle consultant" and "misidentified the location of a pile of slush in the Bronx."


Too much fun. Other than that, as Taranto might say, "The Stor[ies were] accurate."

Hat-tip: Jim Glass at scrivener.net If you click, you get the "When was the mermaid on the Barracuda?" referenced...


Posted by John Kranz at 5:29 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

You knew I'd bite on the Barracuda reference...

It's either a '67 or '68. I recognize the headlight bezels. That design was used on 67-69 models but their shape, and that of the front-center area of the hood, changed in '69. AND, it's a convertible! (Them's what don't know, my '68 Barracuda convertible is red.)

But in the big picture, you don't really expect the NY Times to be expert authorities on everything do you? That would require a super-human intelligence and omniscience on a par with government central-planners.

Posted by: johngalt at March 8, 2010 8:39 PM
But johngalt thinks:

On closer inspection it looks like it is the '69. The ridge down the center of the hood is what that thin cushion is protecting the mermaid's "tail fin" from.

See, even someone who's always right sometimes has to make corrections! ;)

Posted by: johngalt at March 8, 2010 8:42 PM

March 2, 2010

Racism!

WaPo:

But in Washington Post-ABC News polls during his tenure, residents of the nation's southern states -- particularly whites -- have expressed broad doubts about the effectiveness of the stimulus package and Obama's leadership.

Peckerwoods! Support for the stimulus has fallen from 43 to 35% in six months.

In the South.

With a lot of white people.

Clearly, they can't handle the idea of an African American wasting a trillion dollars of their money. I'm frankly embarrassed.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:24 PM | Comments (4)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Exactly the argument being made by the likes of Leonard Pitts, Jr. http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/02/27/1503251/tea-party-fears-a-matter-of-race.html

If you want an exercise in contorted logic, this is a pretty good read.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at March 2, 2010 3:16 PM
But jk thinks:

Mmmmkay. But I defend the Miami Herald and Pitts as they are clearly presenting an editorial. My WaPo email leads today with this paragraph:

"In Washington Post-ABC News polls during his tenure, residents of the nation's southern states -- particularly whites -- have expressed broad doubts about the effectiveness of the stimulus package and Obama's leadership.."

I don't understand the phrase "particularly whites." The data displayed are not broken down by ethnicity. The WaPo story the WaPo blog post links to not only doesn't highlight race -- it says:
Republicans have significantly narrowed the gap with Democrats on who is trusted to deal with the country's problems and have sharply reduced several of President Obama's main political advantages, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

There is no justification for the racial remark except a lazy pathological bias on the part of the writer.

I mean, what other events could have precipitated a dip in the President's poll numbers? I can't think of anything.


Posted by: jk at March 2, 2010 3:47 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Sure, but that's simply the narrative of the liberal left. Whether in news reporting or in opinion, they simply can't think of another logical reason, either.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at March 2, 2010 5:23 PM
But johngalt thinks:

It's refreshing to read that the establishment press version was predominantly bias-free. The honkey-bashing came from their blog, but what do you expect from a bunch of @#$*-ing bloggers?

Posted by: johngalt at March 2, 2010 6:35 PM

February 22, 2010

Pollywood on the Olympics

Very very interesting take on the Olympic coverage (which matches my views pretty closely).

Posted by John Kranz at 3:30 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

A pretty fair take but I disagree on the figure skating judges. It does appear to the viewer that the outcome is preordained but I think that's attributable to NBC's ham-handed editing of the tape-delayed coverage. Last night while the Russians ice dancers were waiting for their scores the graphic read "96.whatever needed to medal" and not "109.whatever needed for gold." It was clear that the Russians were going to get the bronze.

Dagny and I have had no quarrel with the ranking of any of the skating competition results. And when has anyone ever been able to say that before!

Posted by: johngalt at February 23, 2010 11:38 AM

Glenn Beck: Denyin' Deniers?

'Nother datum for those asessing Glen Beck. Yet another vicious attack from the l -- I mean right.

Anointed Leader Of Conservative Movement Glenn Beck Now Believes In Global Warming

The stunning duplicity of Fox News host Glenn Beck has been exposed once again after the talk show host told USA Weekend magazine that he now believes in man-made global warming, after years of assuring his viewers that he was on the side of skeptics who questioned the science behind AGW claims.

In an article entitled Don't judge Beck by his cover, Beck tells interviewer Dennis McCafferty, "You'd be an idiot not to notice the temperature change."


Hat-tip: The ClimateGate Facebook page.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:49 PM | Comments (6)
But jk thinks:

As the last guy on the planet without a solid opinion, how do I score this?

+5 points for heterodoxy and willingness to assert independence

-15 for calling those who disagree with him "idiots."

Sorry gang, after a nice bump for his speech yesterday, I think I am ready to come out as anti-Beck. Ann Coulter is very bright too and far better looking. Yet I tired of defending her bombast. I'm not seeing where I'll appreciate Mister Beck more.

There’s a surfeit of punditry and one can afford to be particular.

Posted by: jk at February 22, 2010 2:10 PM
But johngalt thinks:

A lie will travel halfway around the world before the truth gets its shoes on.

Let's do some more: "Seruh Paylyn's son Twig is Gwyn Bekk's secret love child!" Now, watch for this on HuffPo before the dinner hour.

Posted by: johngalt at February 22, 2010 2:41 PM
But jk thinks:

No, it's true -- I read it on the Internet!

I'll be the first to concede that it is not the most credible of sources (their profile picture is the Kool-Aid man). But do you have substantive proof for impugning their probity?

Posted by: jk at February 22, 2010 4:31 PM
But johngalt thinks:

So far ... only my good sense.

Posted by: johngalt at February 22, 2010 8:36 PM
But jk thinks:

o.

Here's another link and a critical whack at Beck from Mark Levin (whom I don't know either -- I really do need to get out more).

Posted by: jk at February 23, 2010 12:45 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I'll believe Beck "believes in global warming" when I hear him say it himself. Instead, I've consistently heard the contrary. I read in the comments to the original link that the author making the claim had made the assertion himself based on various answers from Beck, i.e. if he doesn't deny that the average global temperature may have increased then, Q.E.D, he "believes in global warming."

Mark Levin (Rush calls him "F. Lee Levin") is a social conservative lawyer and Constitutionalist. I generally agree with him except when he insists that the Founders were all (or predominantly) true-believin' Christians and that America is a Christian nation.

Posted by: johngalt at February 24, 2010 2:47 PM

February 21, 2010

"Progressing Past" Glenn Beck

Here's how Salon.com chose to dismiss Glenn Beck's CPAC speech.

The recitation, and the whole speech, was captivating, it was a little scary, it was almost completely incomprehensible. It was, in other words, pure Glenn Beck. Watching him walk the audience through his absurd fantasies and his melodramatic bluster, you had to wonder what would have happened if he'd been on the CPAC straw poll ballot with the GOP's list of would-be presidents. All weekend long, there wasn't anyone else who held the stage with the presence -- or the craziness -- Beck did.

Pay no attention to the scary, crazy man. You can't understand him anyway. Just move along.

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:44 AM | Comments (5)
But jk thinks:

Incomprehensible to whom? The Salons at Salon (SaS)? (I've waited all my life for that joke...)

Beck is a Palinesue character (Gov. Sarah, not Michael) in that no shades of grey are allowed. You have to be willing to crawl over broken glass to obey his orders or contrive a time machine to prevent his grandparents' being born.

I thank you for posting the clip, it was helpful in my deciding which camp I am in.

I'd call the speech interesting and comprehensible. He's a captivating speaker and I appreciate his appreciation of history. I guess it is incomprehensible to the SaS to blame the Progressives and toast President Coolidge, but I do that 'round here every week.

I would subtract points for two stylistic flaws. A) Starting the speech with "I hate Woodrow Wilson!" I object to defining oneself as what you oppose. (Hilarity ensued on the FOXNewSunday panel yesterday when Juan Williams claimed that [CPAC? the GOP? I forget who] was "just anti-Obama, they don't stand for anything!" when Candidate Obama was never anything but the anti-Bush, but I digress...) B) I am guessing from the applause that the chalkboard is part of his show, but it subtracted from the speech rather than adding to it. He can't say the word "Progressivism?" He did not chart the p-shell of a carbon atom's tetravalence or draw a supply and demand curve. It made me feel talked-down-to. Professor Beck is telling you dumb kids a lot of stuff you don't know.

At the end of the day, though, I cannot disappoint my fans. I must respond to the attack on the big-tent and pragmatism. It's a great applause line to tell the true believers that ev'ybody gotta be true believers.

But the Constitution he and I so cherish is not conducive to the purity he demands. I respect his appreciation for history, but maybe he missed the bit where we've been evenly divided about something or another since 1800. Opposition to slavery could not attain electoral majority without appeals to other issues, Grover Cleveland and Benjamin Harrison traded elections over tariffs.

I'd think at least the Boulder ex-pats around here would respect the philosophical and electoral success progressivism enjoys. I am distinctly an outlier everywhere I go but ThreeSources. The idea that I am going to assemble a plurality of folks who think like me is pretty laughable.

I think Beck, and ThreeSourcers need to reach the party leaders and I think that TEA partiers need to hold leaders of both parties to Constitutional standards. But when you start throwin' guys out of the tent, you have fewer guys.

Posted by: jk at February 22, 2010 11:25 AM
But johngalt thinks:

If this was the first time you've watched Beck it may have been a bit like drinking a bottle of Tabasco without tasting it first. Sorry.

I've watched him off and on throughout the TEA Party era and I'll submit the only thing he "demands purity" on is doing our best to comply with the Constitution.

And he doesn't want to throw people out of the party, just some ideas that are incompatible with a)liberty, b)capitalism, c)the Constitution. What's not to like (other than the bombast?) He sounded like a cross between Mike Rosen and the late great Billy Mays.) He's (slightly) more reserved on his TV show. I think he got carried away with the passion of the moment, having a face-to-face chance to tell the GOP to stop being Democrat Lite.

Posted by: johngalt at February 22, 2010 3:14 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

"...but it's not enough just to not suck as much as the other side."

Isn't this the sort of talk that frightens liberals? And it frightens a lot of GOP officials also: the idea that it's not enough for them to be "less bad" than Democrats.

For once, Beck said something I can applaud. Whether he really means it, well...but at least it's the very thing I have been pounding on for a good while now. Given the choice between the lesser of two evils, I choose neither. I'm not "letting the perfect be the enemy of the good" -- quite the contrary. I'm demanding that "the good" be worthy of the name, that it's not some watered-down "compromise" that leaves me only partially violated.

"Less bad" should never, ever be mistaken as "good," particularly when we're talking about the rights of the individual. That's why, JK, I no longer can excuse the Constitution for giving permission to slavery just so we could assemble as a nation. It betrayed the whole thing Jefferson had written 11 years earlier about "all men are created equal." If we hadn't ratified the Constitution, what would have happened? Would the British have really said to themselves, "Oh look, they still have no strong central government" and invaded us again?

Once your opponents know you're at all willing to compromise, they have you. "In any compromise between food and poison, it is only death that can win. In any compromise between good and evil, it is only evil that can profit." You are accepting some bad because you aren't willing to fight for what is good. Look at what we did to Eastern Europeans, betraying them to decades of Soviet rule. Supposedly we needed Soviets on our side in World War II, and millions of slaves were supposedly price. But what were the Soviets going to do, not fight Germany?

If Republicans don't "compromise" with Democrats on health care, what options do Democrats really have? What will they do, force single-payer medicine on the country if Republicans don't go with a public option?

Children have been socially engineered for decades in public schools to think that "we compromise so that everyone gets part of what he wants," and they grow up to think that if a politician doesn't, he's "selfish" or "an extremist." Yes, I'm selfish, and I'm an extremist: I'm selfish about my personal liberty, because it's something no one else should have, and I'm an extremist in that I refuse to compromise on that.

Now on the "big tent" stuff: what good is having a plurality when you become the party of "Whatever"? As in, "Whatever you believe, join us." If the Republicans finally wise up and start throwing people out, why should the latter be missed?

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 22, 2010 10:03 PM
But jk thinks:

Perry, you bring up one of my favorite counterfactuals. We all venerate the founders, but would it have sucked so bad to be Canada South? I'd say in the 18h and 19th centuries, we may have been better off. I'm glad we escaped the post WWI Fabian Socialism, but it's an interesting position.

But let me go back to the alliance that ended slavery. This was not a collection of starry-eyed dreamers who hummed John Lennon songs and dreamt of a world without racism. It was a motley collection of corporate interests, unionists, and northern imperialists that teamed up with the abolitionists. If the impure were kicked out of that group, they'd have never raised a battalion.

Not sure if anybody believes I actually have any principles, but I do, I would NOT compromise on health care or Cap'n Trade or advise any GOP legislator so to do. I love the Goldwater quote "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

But Sen. Scott Brown voted for the jobs bill and posted a defense of the vote on his Facebook page. Are we going to kick the guy who saved heath care out of the GOP?

Posted by: jk at February 23, 2010 11:26 AM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:
Perry, you bring up one of my favorite counterfactuals. We all venerate the founders, but would it have sucked so bad to be Canada South? I'd say in the 18h and 19th centuries, we may have been better off. I'm glad we escaped the post WWI Fabian Socialism, but it's an interesting position.
I don't doubt for a second that we were better off seceding from British rule.

Several years ago, I posited that in an alternate timeline where the colonies failed to secede, Germany eventually ruled the world. The British had no interest in expanding west of the Appalachians, and it was the achievement of independence that allowed American innovation and ingenuity to flourish, so you wouldn't have had an industrial power called the United States capable of stopping Germany.

But let me go back to the alliance that ended slavery. This was not a collection of starry-eyed dreamers who hummed John Lennon songs and dreamt of a world without racism. It was a motley collection of corporate interests, unionists, and northern imperialists that teamed up with the abolitionists. If the impure were kicked out of that group, they'd have never raised a battalion.
Well, I was talking about the fact that the federal government from the start gave sanction to owning other human beings, as "compromise," not how to end slavery. But on this topic, what happened with the colonials? Only a third of them wanted to be free from England: some were smugglers (certainly NOT a crime), some were businessmen, some were farmers. The one thing that united them was a desire for freedom, and they found a way to be strong enough to win.

If you never read it, Thomas DiLorenzo wrote a spectacular book on Lincoln in which he pointed out that slavery was kept alive only because it was supported by the government. In a free market, it would have died out because it wasn't as profitable as paid labor.

Not sure if anybody believes I actually have any principles, but I do, I would NOT compromise on health care or Cap'n Trade or advise any GOP legislator so to do. I love the Goldwater quote "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."
But you routinely talk about pragmatism and compromise. Sticking to a couple of things isn't enough. I'm not trying to be a jerk about it, you know, but you're one of several friends I'm trying to nudge toward that real extreme of pure liberty.
But Sen. Scott Brown voted for the jobs bill and posted a defense of the vote on his Facebook page. Are we going to kick the guy who saved heath care out of the GOP?
Considering the GOP has its own brand of big government, he's a perfect fit for that political party. He didn't save health care, he just postponed things a little until a "compromise" that moves us further along on the road to hell.

The people who need to dismiss him are not Republicans, but anyone who values true liberty. Were you really surprised that he did this? I figured the honeymoon would end badly for Republicans striving for limited government, just not quite so soon. The clock just hit midnight, and the joke is on the people who thought Brown was their Cinderella.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 23, 2010 10:47 PM

February 12, 2010

Calling All Pedants!

Ed Morrissey at HotAir: "More 'unexpected' economic news"

Reuters breaks out its favorite economic adverb again today, this time in its headline on consumer confidence. American consumers turned more pessimistic than forecasters predicted, which has been more or less the ďunexpectedĒ norm in economic reporting

I agree and cheer the ridicule of "unexpected" preceding bad economic news.

But I say "unexpected" modifies the noun news, not the adjective economic, and ergo, ipse dixit, res ipsa loquitor, quod erat demostratum, it be an adjective.

Smarter folks are encouraged to wade in.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:18 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

You don't think Reuters considers "news" to be a verb?

Posted by: johngalt at February 13, 2010 1:44 PM
But jk thinks:

Hahahahaha! I'm sure you're tight! Yet the quote is from Ed Morrissey...

Posted by: jk at February 13, 2010 3:59 PM

February 11, 2010

Book Title of the Year

fly_fish_vader.jpg Fly Fishing with Darth Vader by Matt Lebash

Amazon link

Oh man, I love his Weekly Standard stuff -- and they have it for Kindle®. I veered of the Presidents to read (the superb) The Invisible Hook: The Hidden Economics of Pirates.

Hat-tip: Galley Slaves


Posted by John Kranz at 4:14 PM | Comments (0)

Klavan: Liberal Fantasies v. Reality

Andrew Klavan explains how culture in America has become an enchanted place where the conservative facts of life are magically turned into liberal fantasies. From JFK conspiracy theories to murderous evangelical Christians, can you spot the difference between "culture" and reality? Watch & comment here: http://pjtv.com/v/3008

Posted by JohnGalt at 4:05 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Now that I have a moment to excerpt, here's my favorite line (other than calling intellectuals and entertainers "ass hats"):

"And speaking of Avatar, it not only celebrates being at one with the sacred earth but portrays U.S. soldiers as evil sadists out to destroy native peoples. Can you spot the difference between Avatar and, say, Haiti? Where our old pal the sacred earth slaughtered innocent people in the thousands and the U.S. military turned out in a massive rescue effort."

This is a good one to forward to your liberal friends.

Posted by: johngalt at February 12, 2010 3:25 PM

February 5, 2010

Et tu, AP?

If he's lost the Associated Press, he's lost America!

AP - No, maybe he can't. President Barack Obama, who insisted he would succeed where other presidents had failed to fix the nation's health care system, now concedes the effort may die in Congress.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:04 PM | Comments (0)

February 4, 2010

Y're Breakin' My Balls, Murdoch!

Sorry, I've been watching way too much South Park lately...

Wow, the Wall Street Journal has really tightened up what it gives away. I subscribed for many years, and then dropped it, honestly, when they started giving away all my favorite parts for free.

Rupert has turned the thumbscrews down and I cannot live without the only source of information I actually believe. I got a nice "Come home, jk, we miss you" offer for a $79 One year subscription.

Uncle!

Posted by John Kranz at 11:16 AM | Comments (0)

February 3, 2010

Blog Post Heading of the Day

Martians and Bill O'Reilly -- John Stossel

The rest of the post is good, too. Captures my thoughts on Citizens United v FEC perfectly.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:36 PM | Comments (0)

January 27, 2010

Divided We Stand!

Curious lede:

AP - Facing a divided Congress and a dissatisfied nation, President Barack Obama will unveil a jobs-heavy agenda in his State of the Union address Wednesday, retooling his message more than his mission...

Divided? Almost historic majorities? A filibuster-proof Senate for the first year?

Posted by John Kranz at 12:48 PM | Comments (0)

January 20, 2010

Editorials I Never Started Reading

Thomas Frank today: "Cross of Gold: How the government could get even with right-wing cranks"

Not gonna click. Not gonna link. It's on the WSJ Ed Page if you have the stomach.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:04 PM | Comments (0)

January 15, 2010

Democrats for Brown

No posts here on the MA senate race in 4 days... shameful! (Brown by 15 points?)

Public Policy Polling, the first to notice that Coakley was croaking, has some inside baseball on registered Democrats and their attitudes about healthcare reform.

In Massachusetts it's a similar story with Scott Brown up 61-24 with those folks, [Democrats who opposed the health care plan] which based on our current projection of likely voters accounts for 20% of Massachusetts Democrats. One of the keys to Democratic success in 2008, for all the bluster about the PUMA crowd, was a high level of party unity. Barack Obama held onto 89% of his party's voters. If health care creates bigger divisions within the party ranks than that this year it's just going to be one more strike against Democratic candidates in close races.

We voters are repeatedly chided that "elections have consequences." Looks like Democrats should have heeded the corollary: "Pissing on taxpayers has consequences."


UPDATE: From the "Pajamas Media/Cross Target" poll taken yesterday that shows Brown at 15%, a couple of choice questions:

1. Thinking about next Tuesdayís special election for US Senate. The candidates are Republican Scott Brown and Democrat Martha Coakley. If the election were today, who would you vote for? If Scott Brown press 1, if Martha Coakley press 2. If you are undecided press 3. 1. Scott Brown 53.9% 2. Martha Coakley 38.5% 3. Undecided 7.6%

6. Thank you. Now for the last question. Do you consider yourself a Republican, a Democrat or something else. If a Republican press 1. If a Democrat press 2. If something else press 3.
1. Republican 20.3%
2. Democrat 36.6%
3. Something else 43.1%

Registration may be 3:1 Dem but "consider yourself" is running closer than that.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:44 PM | Comments (3)
But jk thinks:

They're sending in President Obama to campaign for Croakley. Brown should start measuring for draperies.

Posted by: jk at January 15, 2010 3:12 PM
But jk thinks:

Seriously, I worry that he is peaking too soon. Presidents Clinton and Obama are airlifted in this weekend, the ACORN-brigades will fire up, the national Democratic fund-raising machine has kicked in. I'm glad it's a race but it is too soon to gloat over a GOP win in "The Commonwealth."

Posted by: jk at January 16, 2010 11:46 AM
But johngalt thinks:

My brother still expects Croakley to win but that a close contest there will make Dems nationwide back off from the O-genda. That's all I'm gloating over - for now.

Interesting that none of the TV talking heads or even Jason Lewis talked about the +15 poll last night. Do they not read RCP or do they think it's a junk poll?

Posted by: johngalt at January 16, 2010 12:26 PM

January 11, 2010

Boston Herald Endorses Scott Brown

Aah, you know those right wing nutjobs at the Boston Herald Editorial Page.No surprise here:

Massachusetts voters have to ask themselves a serious question before they head to the polls next week: Are they content with the current state of affairs in Washington?

Are they content with a sweeping health care bill, now being negotiated behind closed doors by principals from only one political party? (So much for a new era of bipartisanship promised by our president.)

And are they prepared for the impact that bill will have on the health care industry in our own state, where we already insure 97 percent of our population?


Amazing! Hat-tip: Instapundit

UPDATE: He's having a special fundraising day with a $500K goal and it's now pushing 750. I gave another $35. You guys have seen how I dress, I'm not a wealthy man. What's it worth to stop ObamaCare? Donate

UPDATE II: $1.3 Million -- I am going to share this information with Senator Michael Bennet today. Y'know it is almost like people hate socialized medicine and will mobilize against those candidates who support it...

UPDATE III:

Senator Bennet

I don't have a lot of money, but I did give $85 yesterday to Scott Brown in Massachusetts -- in hopes that we might stop this monstrous health care bill. I will donate $1000 to your opponent if you continue to vote for it.

I suggest you save me $1000 and save your Senate seat. You could still vote against this, citing the non-democratic methods used in the reconciliation process.

How 'bout it Senator? I've got much better things to spend $1000 on.

Respectfully yours,
John Kranz


Posted by John Kranz at 5:33 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Does the nation's 53rd largest newspaper, with a circulation smaller than the Nashville Tennessean, count as a mainstream media outlet? The other paper in town has nearly three times as many readers but the legitimacy conferred by this endorsement is inestimable.

And this big-media desertion of the Obama agenda comes just 8 days before the anniversary of his first year in office. Who'da thunk?

P.S. Have I told you I'll be running against Michael Bennet for the US Senate? ;)

Posted by: johngalt at January 12, 2010 3:21 PM
But jk thinks:

I conflated the Herald with the NYTimes-owned Globe. Still cool but not quite the earthquake I'd thought.

RE JG2k10: I wish, brother. You go and I'll support. In the meantime: heh.

Posted by: jk at January 12, 2010 3:52 PM

January 6, 2010

Score One for the Internets!

I read and recommend Don Luskin's co-authored guest editorial in the WSJ today. I guess Democrats are in charge -- a tax on trading?

If you have not settled in yet, I suggest you read it on Luskin's site. WIthout the legacy requirements of paper, his version features several links to sources and additional information.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:34 PM | Comments (0)

January 5, 2010

Bless the Blogosphere

Sure, I could spend an hour and crank out a second-rate blog post ridiculing David Brooks's elitism. But why? Will Collier hits it out of the park -- and I just gotta link!

Read the whole merciless pounding, but here's a taste:

First, David, until you can explain--without consulting Google--say, Bernoulli's theorem and how it relates to flight, don't bother passing yourself and your like-minded NYDC pals off as the country's sole "educated class." Out here in the hinterlands, we're well aware that you and your Ivy League buddies believe that you are the only actual educated people on the planet, but you ought to have learned somewhere along the way that belief in an idea does turn that idea into reality. Asserting as much, to borrow a line from the late John Hughes, just makes you look like an ass.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

UPDATE: Plus, a Title of the Day for "More Arugula From David Brooks"

Posted by John Kranz at 3:21 PM | Comments (1)
But Silence Dogood thinks:

Ah,how I long for the days of President Bush who would never have been caught in an Ivy League institution, or professionals like Michael Brown.

Posted by: Silence Dogood at January 10, 2010 12:26 PM

January 2, 2010

Naked Emporer Alert

I read this yesterday and did not think it was too big a deal. But Mark Tapscott says it is, and I am starting to see his side.

[Personal Democracy Forum's Tech President Micah] Sifry summarizes the difference between the truth and the myth at the outset of his post, noting "the truth is that Obama was never nearly as free of dependence on big money donors as the reporting suggested, nor was his movement as bottom-up or people-centric as his marketing implied.
"And this is the big story of 2009, if you ask me, the meta-story of what did, and didn't happen, in the first year of Obama's administration. The people who voted for him weren't organized in any kind of new or powerful way, and the special interests--banks, energy companies, health interests, car-makers, the military-industrial complex--sat first at the table and wrote the menu. Myth met reality, and came up wanting."

I did not believe anything else from the Obama campaign, but I must admit that I did buy in to grassroots, little-guy, small donation fundraising story. NaÔf.

UPDATE: Link! (Thanks, jg!)

Posted by John Kranz at 12:20 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Did you mean to link?

So where did the big money come from? Let me guess:

Unions
George Soros
Trial lawyers
General Electric
Duke Energy
Pharmaceutical lobbyists
Environmental groups

Did I miss anybody?

Posted by: johngalt at January 2, 2010 1:10 PM

December 9, 2009

I Do Love This Country

The subject line of the NYTimes wrap up today:

@Times: Top 5, Taylor Swift, Hanukkah Recipes and More

All that's fit to print!

Posted by John Kranz at 2:21 PM | Comments (0)

November 30, 2009

May Need Cable After All...

Dear John,

On December 8, Fox Business News' John Stossel will start taping Stossel, his new weekly show on libertarianism and economic freedom. John is a longtime Reason reader and friend, and we were thrilled when he tapped Reason's Nick Gillespie to appear on the very first edition of Stossel to discuss Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugged. The following week, John will draw from Reason.tv's award-winning video content as he takes on the healthcare debate.

If you will be in New York and would like to be part of the Stossel studio audience, please send an email to stosseltix@foxnews.com or call Fox News directly at (877) 369-8587. The shows will be taped at Fox Studios, 133 W. 47th Street (between 6th and 7th Avenues). Please be sure to include your name, the number of seats you need and an email address and phone number where you can be reached for confirmation. The following programs are scheduled:

WHEN: Tuesday, December 8th
SUBJECT: Atlas Shrugged and its meaning today
ARRIVAL TIME: 1:00 PM

WHEN: Thursday, December 10th
SUBJECT: Global warming and the environment
ARRIVAL TIME: 10:00 AM

WHEN: Thursday, December 17th
SUBJECT: Healthcare
ARRIVAL TIME: 10:00 AM

Thanks again for your support of Reason.
David Nott
President, Reason Foundation

Posted by John Kranz at 7:11 PM | Comments (0)

November 24, 2009

ThreeSources Spin Meter Spin Meter

Gotta love the AP! There's a 2,000+ page healthcare bill out, it "reduces the deficit" by applying 10 years of revenue to six years of expenses, and by claiming Medicare reductions that no sentient being expects will not be rescinded by this or a future Congress.

Thankfully, the Associated Press has pulled a few resources off the Sarah Palin book to expose the disingenuousness of -- wait for it -- the GOP opposition:

WASHINGTON -- Republicans love to get their hands on the Democrats' health care legislation. They show it to the cameras at every opportunity, even piling one version on top of another to make a big pile look even bigger.

Although they complain they don't have time to read all of it, they found the time to tape it together, page by page, so they could roll it up the steps of the Capitol like super-sized toilet paper and show how very long it is.

It surely is long. But, no, not longer than "War and Peace," as they claim.


Those wacky Republicans! What stunt will they dare try next?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:06 AM | Comments (2)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

This is perhaps the biggest pile of cow excrement I've ever read from the AP. Calvin Woodward evidently can be a little critical of Democrats to show "balance," but he's showing his true colors. Besides, he must ensure he won't be sent off to a future re-education gulag.

This deserves an Eidelbus fisking:

WASHINGTON ‚Äď Republicans love to get their hands on the Democrats' health care legislation. They show it to the cameras at every opportunity, even piling one version on top of another to make a big pile look even bigger.
If you didn't see the AP logo, you'd think you were reading the Huffington Post, Think Progress or Talking Points Memo. Sheesh.
Although they complain they don't have time to read all of it, they found the time to tape it together, page by page, so they could roll it up the steps of the Capitol like super-sized toilet paper and show how very long it is.
Gee, how professionally written, and how absurd. Which takes more time and effort, to heft a single tome or to read through its thousands of pages?
It surely is long. But, no, not longer than "War and Peace," as they claim.
No one really expects brevity when reinventing something as complex and huge as the nation's health insurance system, which accounts for one-sixth of the economy. Indeed, legislation of comparable size was used to redefine an area of much more limited federal responsibility, education. That was the No Child Left Behind Act from the agenda of Republican President George W. Bush.
See, see, that evil McChimpyBooshHitler did it, so it's ok for Democrats to do it even bigger!
Size only matters in the health care debate because Republicans have turned the length of the legislation into a symbol: Big, unwieldy bill means big, overreaching government. Even bigger when you display double-spaced copies with double-wide margins and large print.
So if Republicans didn't oppose it, it didn't matter that it's a big bill by big, overreaching government to control a sixth of our economy.
As if he risked a hernia carrying it any other way, Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa was seen hoisting such a copy of the House Democratic bill on his shoulder, the package trussed in a sturdy rope. GOP Rep. John Culberson of Texas brought a copy to a Capitol Hill rally and threw its loose pages to the crowd, like meat to lions.
See what I wrote above about the comparison to HuffPo et al.
During the weekend vote to bring the Senate health bill to full debate, five Republican senators displayed the massive legislation on their desks and one of them, Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, piled the House and Senate bills together to represent a nightmarishly bureaucratic double-whammy.
So more irrelevancy, when the point is that it's absurd for the two halves of Congress to come up with such monstrosities.
The actual bill, which Senate Majority Leader Harry introduced last week, came in at 2,074 double-spaced pages, 84 more pages than the House version, which was already being ridiculed for its size.
"That's larger than the novel 'War and Peace,'" Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah said of the Senate bill.
"Exceeding even 'War and Peace' in length," Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., said of the House bill.
Said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas: "'War and Peace' ‚ÄĒ some people consider it the greatest book ever written, but most people recognize the novel because at 1,284 pages its length is often the butt of jokes. Now imagine trying to read something that long overnight."
Mainstream media apologism in three, two, one...
Actually, Leo Tolstoy's tome is longer than either bill. Full translated versions are nearly twice as long.

The bill passed by the House is 319,145 words. The Senate bill is 318,512 words, shorter than the House version despite consuming more paper. Various versions of Tolstoy's novel are 560,000 to 670,000 words. Bush's education act tallied more than 280,000 words.Oh, that should make us feel so much better. Counting words, the two versions are "only" 57% as long as "War and Peace"...so let's see which members of Congress read 57% of the book overnight. Or in five days? That's how long Obama said he'll make a bill available for public view before he signs it, a promise he has routinely broken.

Another point of comparision: the bills, again counting words, are 40% as long as the King James Bible. No doubt, the very middle of each commendeth us to say, "Bless the Lord Obama, o my soul, and all that is prosperous within me, may he take away."

By now, the full draft of Reid's bill that had circulated in the corridors and landed so prominently on Republican desks has been published in the Congressional Record in the official and conventional manner.
The type is small and tight. No hernias will be caused by moving this rendering of the bill around. Unfurling it on the Capitol steps would not be much of a spectacle.
"The type is small and tight." Yes, and you can laser-etch the Declaration of Independence on the head of a pin. I routinely fiddle with font size and margins so that a memo can fit on a single page, so when it comes to Reid's feat, so f******** what?

Think about it: a single-spaced typed page is roughly 500 words, so if you somehow put the absurd quantity of 1000 words on each page, you'd still need well over 300 pages for either version. That's over 150 double-sided pages of fine print.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at November 24, 2009 12:00 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

For Obama commendeth his love toward us in that, while we are yet greedy capitalists or the uninsured and oppressed, we can die for him.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at November 24, 2009 12:03 PM

November 22, 2009

Al Gore Wishes he Never Invented the Internet

This whole post at Minnesotans for Global Warming is hilarious and biting, but here is the part I find most relevant to prior posts of my own:

The Global Warming Extremists controlled the argument for years by saying, it's only legitimate science if it's published in certain journals and peer reviewed, and if you control the Journals you control the science. But sadly with Al Gore's invention, the anointed few are losing control, much like the medieval church did with the invention of the printing press.
Posted by JohnGalt at 12:05 PM | Comments (0)

Cloture

The Associated Press spells it out for those for those who don't understand the arcane procedures of the US Senate:

WASHINGTON Ė A bruising debate on health care awaits the Senate after Thanksgiving now that the historic legislation has cleared a key hurdle over the opposition of Republicans eager to inflict a punishing defeat on President Barack Obama.

The bill would extend coverage to roughly 31 million who lack it, crack down on insurance company practices that deny or dilute benefits and curtail the growth of spending on medical care nationally.


To be more fair than they, the fourth paragraph quotes Leader McConnell with some decent opposition, but he comes off sounding political now that we have laid down the facts: Democrats want to "pass historic legislation" that "extend[s] coverage to roughly 31 million who lack it," "crack[s] down on insurance company practices that deny or dilute benefits" and "curtail[s] the growth of spending on medical care nationally"

Republicans are "eager to inflict a punishing defeat on President Barack Obama."

Posted by John Kranz at 11:19 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

"APObama" is in fine form.

As for the "historic legislation" it is so much so that it wasn't even mentioned in an email update from one of my Colorado senators, Mark Udall.
Sent: Saturday, November 11, 2009 7:14 am.
Subject: "Mark's Newsletter Update: Helping Small Businesses Grow, Honoring Our Veterans, Expanding Wilderness in the San Juan Mountains"

Worse than not even mentioning the health care bill he was poised to vote AYE on later the same day, he trumpeted a letter he wrote to the president because he's "looking out for Main Street - not just Wall Street." His arrogant self-deception disgusts me.

Posted by: johngalt at November 22, 2009 1:03 PM

November 21, 2009

The "Prestige Press"

Sarah Palin calls them the "Lamestream Media."

Mike Rosen calls them the "Dominant Liberal Establishment Media."

Brother jk calls them <heavenly music>The New York Times.</heavenly music>

Climate change conspirast Michael Mann, of "hockey stick" fame, calls them the "Prestige Press." This excerpt from one of the email thread archives that comprise Climategate definitely is one of the "things that make you go HMMMM."

Andrew Revkin to Michael Mann, Sep 29, 2009, 4:30 pm:

needless to say, seems the 2008 pnas paper showing that without tree rings still solid picture of unusual recent warmth, but McIntyre is getting wide play for his statements about Yamal data-set selectivity. Has he communicated directly to you on this and/or is there any indication he's seeking journal publication for his deconstruct?

Michael Mann replies, Sep 29, 2009, 5:08 pm:

Hi Andy,

I'm fairly certain Keith is out of contact right now recovering from an operation, and is not in a position to respond to these attacks. However, the preliminary information I have from others familiar with these data is that the attacks are bogus.

It is unclear that this particular series was used in any of our reconstructions (some of the underlying chronologies may be the same, but I'm fairly certain the versions of these data we have used are based on a different composite and standardization method), let alone any of the dozen other reconstructions of Northern Hemisphere mean temperature shown in the most recent IPCC report, which come to the conclusion that recent warming is anomalous in a long-term context.

So, even if there were a problem w/ these data, it wouldn't matter as far as the key conclusions regarding past warmth are concerned. But I don't think there is any problem with these data, rather it appears that McIntyre has greatly distorted the actual information content of these data. It will take folks a few days to get to the bottom of this, in Keith's absence.

if McIntyre had a legitimate point, he would submit a comment to the journal in question. of course, the last time he tried that (w/ our '98 article in Nature), his comment was rejected. For all of the noise and bluster about the Steig et al Antarctic warming, its now nearing a year and nothing has been submitted. So more likely he won't submit for peer-reviewed scrutiny, or if it does get his criticism "published" it will be in the discredited contrarian home journal "Energy and Environment". I'm sure you are aware that McIntyre and his ilk realize they no longer need to get their crap published in legitimate journals. All they have to do is put it up on their blog, and the contrarian noise machine kicks into gear, pretty soon Druge, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and their ilk (in this case, The Telegraph were already on it this morning) are parroting the claims. And based on what? some guy w/ no credentials, dubious connections with the energy industry, and who hasn't submitted his claims to the scrutiny of peer review.

Fortunately, the prestige press doesn't fall for this sort of stuff, right?

mike

Revkin again, Sep 29, 2009, 5:18 pm:

thanks heaps.

tom crowley has sent me a direct challenge to mcintyre to start contributing to the reviewed lit or shut up. i'm going to post that soon. just want to be sure that what is spliced below is from YOU ... a little unclear . ?

I'm copying this to Tim, in hopes that he can shed light on the specific data assertions made over at climateaudit.org.....

I'm going to blog on this as it relates to the value of the peer review process and not on the merits of the mcintyre et al attacks. peer review, for all its imperfections, is where the herky-jerky process of knowledge building happens, would you agree?

One can almost see the "wink, wink" between the lines when Mann says, "...the prestige press doesn't fall for this sort of stuff, RIGHT?"

The two of them certainly appear to be defending the standing of their sycophantic collection of science journals against any dissent - even from other peer-reviewed journals which may happen to be "discredited."

Posted by JohnGalt at 3:56 PM | Comments (8)
But jk thinks:

Well played, lads.

I think the "bombshell" of the "Climategate" emails is to underscore what I have bored y'all with for years: the pro-AWG side may not be evil, but they are not participating in the scientific process. You don't have to get a paper published to contradict a paper. Science moves along as gruesomely as the NFL playoffs. If you publish, your work will be attacked fairly and unfairly and you are expected to defend it.

I posted a link last September about this mentality:

Now begins the fun. Warwick Hughes, an Australian scientist, wondered where that +/- came from, so he politely wrote Phil Jones in early 2005, asking for the original data. Jones's response to a fellow scientist attempting to replicate his work was, "We have 25 years or so invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?"

Reread that statement, for it is breathtaking in its anti-scientific thrust. In fact, the entire purpose of replication is to "try and find something wrong." The ultimate objective of science is to do things so well that, indeed, nothing is wrong.

The leaked emails highlight this contempt for Popperian discovery. At the end of the day, whether in the sainted NYT or lowly Australian Sun, I don't think they'll change anybody's mind. They'll feed the deniers' case but the process is too abstract and arcane to dissuade believers.

Posted by: jk at November 22, 2009 11:47 AM
But nanobrewer thinks:


TG has a point: there is no smoking gun here of Dr. Hockey Stick or the NYT reporter trying to extort or directly kneecap a critic. However, I only see a trace of scientific curiosity. I see two professionals spending most of their time spinning, packaging and smearing by association.

This upholds my main criticism of the 'science' arm of the AGW movement from nearly the very beginning. They long ago shucked science for politics, notoriety, and ideology. I feel vindicated in this at the Royal Danish Society's response to the attempt at - in effect - defenestrating Dr. Lomborg by several hundred Danish scientists, whose terse judgment upholding Dr. Lomborg's status and ideas, essentially said "you all say you have degrees?"

I've spent years in academic review settings, and never seen anything quite like this, nor any scientist so worried about what the press may or may not "fall for." If Dr. Mann were truly confident in his findings, surely he'd have the confidence that that the truth would out, yes?

I'm also quite shocked that Dr. Hockey Stick is still listened to by any institution that regards itself reputable in a scientific sense, as much as if I saw some institute still giving prominence to Drs. Pons or Fleischmann.

Posted by: nanobrewer at November 22, 2009 5:53 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

For what it's worth, "Lamestream media" was coined by Bernie Goldberg.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at November 23, 2009 1:04 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Thanks for that br. I knew Palin wasn't the first but I couldn't remember who was.

My favorite is still "Drive-By Media." It's such a perfect description of how they race in to shoot up a story however they like and leave it for others to come in later with the ambulance full of facts. Trouble is, the patient - in this case, objective reporting of the news - often dies anyway.

Posted by: johngalt at November 23, 2009 3:05 PM
But jk thinks:

Any Bernie fans around here? To be fair, I think of him as "our Andrew Sullivan." His two books "Bias" and "Arrogance" were incredible for their seriousness, quality, and explosiveness. Game changing admissions from an inside whistleblower.

Like Sullivan, it probably hurts to lose all your friends. His hyper-partisan screeds that have followed tarnish the reputation and seriousness of the two masterpieces.

Too harsh me?

Posted by: jk at November 23, 2009 4:09 PM
But Fran Manns thinks:

Climategate Foretold...
‚Äú‚ÄĘ What is the current scientific consensus on the conclusions reached by Drs. Mann, Bradley and Hughes? [Referring to the hockey stick propagated in UN IPCC 2001 by Michael Mann.]
Ans: Based on the literature we have reviewed, there is no overarching consensus on MBH98/99. As analyzed in our social network, there is a tightly knit group of individuals who passionately believe in their thesis. However, our perception is that this group has a self-reinforcing feedback mechanism and, moreover, the work has been sufficiently politicized that they can hardly reassess their public positions without losing credibility.‚ÄĚ
AD HOC COMMITTEE REPORT ON THE ‚ÄėHOCKEY STICK‚Äô GLOBAL CLIMATE RECONSTRUCTION, also known as The Wegman report was authored by Edward J. Wegman, George Mason University, David W. Scott, Rice University, and Yasmin H. Said, The Johns Hopkins University with the contributions of John T. Rigsby, III, Naval Surface Warfare Center, and Denise M. Reeves, MITRE Corporation.

Posted by: Fran Manns at November 28, 2009 11:16 PM

I guess that's why they're called "lamestream"

Andrew Revkin of the New York Times reports on environmental issues, "in print and on his blog, Dot Earth." At least, that's what his NYT bio page says. The day after Climategate exploded on the internet, Revkin wrote about it today.

The evidence pointing to a growing human contribution to global warming is so widely accepted that the hacked material is unlikely to erode the overall argument. However, the documents will undoubtedly raise questions about the quality of research on some specific questions and the actions of some scientists.

As one of the leading lamestream media voices, Revkin's seems to be spinning: Yeah, these guys were doing bad science but we're only talking about a handful of scientists. Well we're also only talking about a handful of reporters who tell us that the science is settled, and Revkin is one of them.

It turns out his name appears in the FOIA data dump emails. According to Dr. Tim Ball in the story linked as UPDATE 2 on yesterday's post,

They also had a left wing conduit to the New York Times. The emails between Andy Revkin and the community are very revealing and must place his journalistic integrity in serious jeopardy.

Paul Chesser at American Spectator wasn't so delicate:

Revkin has authored two global warming books and so has a lot to lose himself from this controversy, as his reputation is just as much at stake as the scientists.' Therefore his defense mechanisms are fully engaged. In his blog post yesterday about the revelations, he states that repercussions "continue to unfold" and "thereís much more to explore," but do you really think he can be counted on for follow-up stories about it this week?

For my part I have to ask, is Revkin a reporter, a blogger, or a co-conspirator?

Posted by JohnGalt at 12:47 PM | Comments (3)
But jk thinks:

I did chuckle at the 'graph you excerpted -- but that was pretty far down the post and I thought what came before it was pretty damning. Most significant was the jump from anti-DAWG organs and blogs to <heavenly music>The New York Times</heavenly musc>.

Not on the cover of The Nation yet, but it took a couple steps up with this admission.

Posted by: jk at November 21, 2009 3:15 PM
But nanobrewer thinks:


Really JK,
do you need to ask I have to ask, is Revkin a reporter, a blogger, or a co-conspirator

His comment that "evidence pointing to a growing human contribution to global warming is so widely accepted" clearly points to him being a reporter (such as it is these days)!!

I think I'm right in stating that the majority Vox Populi is now against what Revkin has bought into, and the scientific community will continue to defy quantification.

Posted by: nanobrewer at November 22, 2009 6:46 PM
But jk thinks:

Point of order: actually nb, this post is jg and not jk. I'm the attractive one, he's the good spellor.

Posted by: jk at November 23, 2009 10:46 AM

November 11, 2009

Amazin'

Thomas "What's the Matter with Frank?" Kansas tries to fill Al Hunt's seat on the WSJ Editorial Page. As I've said, I have found him not quite up to the task, but I bet Al would be right with him on today's. Click on"

The Real Danger of 'One Big Regulator'

And read the subhead: "What if those in control don't believe in oversight?"

Yup, that's the problem, Mister Frank -- you put one guy in charge of the whole world and he might just sit around and never exercise his power. Clearly, thatís why Monroe fought for tripartite government and a bicameral legislature: to make sure somebody got off their ass and told somebody else how/what to do.

UPDATE: Don Boudreaux answers more substantively that I did.

Even if we can imagine a super-regulator operating in ways that increase the efficiency and stability of financial markets, the prospect that he or she will be either inept or dishonest is far too great to risk concentrating such enormous power in a single person or agency. In practice we must reckon on realities and not on fantasies.

So in fact we must reckon on the allure of power to those who greedily crave authority over others; we must reckon on powerís corrupting influence; and we must reckon on the imperfections that mar even the finest individualís knowledge and judgment. These unavoidable realities of the human condition will result in this ďOne Big RegulatorĒ Ė whose hands, at best only loosely tied, will be on all of the nationís financial levers Ė injecting into financial markets systematic risks far greater than those that already exist.


Hat-tip; John Stossel

Posted by John Kranz at 1:39 PM | Comments (0)

October 30, 2009

Our Margaret

I stopped reading Peggy Noonan many moons ago, but the new WSJ navigation makes it difficult. Sometimes you click and it's too late:.

The biggest threat to America right now is not government spending, huge deficits, foreign ownership of our debt, world terrorism, two wars, potential epidemics or nuts with nukes. The biggest long-term threat is that people are becoming and have become disheartened, that this condition is reaching critical mass, and that it afflicts most broadly and deeply those members of the American leadership class who are not in Washington, most especially those in business.

What happened to this woman? I don't mind a bit of twaddle on the Internet, but this if from somebody who was one of the great voices her generation.

UPDATE: Funny, Professor Reynolds links positively, highlighting a "going John Galt" angle to the story. If people "go John Galt" (or even "go JK") because they are disheartened, that is not it. People go John Galt because they are, or obviously will be, subject to public usufruct.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:10 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

I won't endure any more by clicking the link but judging by your excerpt I can only describe her "insights" as insipid blathering.

The only connection between Noonan and Galt is that she's the type who would ask, "Who is John Galt?"

Posted by: johngalt at October 31, 2009 3:21 PM

October 28, 2009

Murdochavellian

Sturm and drang reigned when Rupert Murdoch bought the Wall Street Journal. The guy whose cable TV network is not really even a news organization was buying a flagship national paper.

I think the results have been pretty uneventful. The news pages have not gone FOXNews. But I do claim that the editorial page photographs have gone a little NY Post. Gone are the romantic retro woodcut illustrations. They have been replaced by full color photos. And if the photo editor likes you, you do okay, Speaker Pelosi has a Nightmare-on-K-Street photo that repeats frequently, and a common photo of the President makes him look a little hectoring.

Today's photo of Pay Czar, however, is my new favorite. This is the guy who is telling you how much money you can make! Here he is seemingly caught in the act:

feinberg.jpg

Now anybody who appoints, approves, or accepts a position of Pay Czar in the United States certainly deserves this and worse. I just find it funny. Less humor abounds in the attached Homan Jenkins, Jr. editorial:

Mr. Feinberg is an apt symbol indeed, for this gamble is built on the conceit that Washington can hector the recipients, whether auto companies, banks or homeowners, into behaving in ways that are "responsible." So far, however, human nature is proving a disappointment: Take the outbreak of tax fraud related to the government's emergency home-buyer's credit.

Nor is the larger gamble looking so good either. Banks continue to fail at an alarming rate, the dollar is under assault, and Washington is looking at a future of trillion-dollar deficits. One might have guessed it would take a decade of Obamanomics to produce European welfare state levels of youth unemployment, but at 18.5% we're there.


But the picture is great.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:07 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith thinks:

I do miss those classy woodcuts. Much more gravitas than USA Today-style color photos.

Posted by: Keith at October 28, 2009 3:59 PM
But jk thinks:

Really questionable from a branding perspective: you could recognize the WSJ from across the airport terminal thanks to those.

Posted by: jk at October 29, 2009 2:00 PM

October 26, 2009

Come Home John, We Need You!

John Stossel, who used to work for an Executive Branch Certified Media Organization (look for the Obama -- FairNews® label!) hits an important point today that needs to be made to his old audience. And he quoted Milton Friedman to boot:

There are people going to jail for insider trading and I think it has been a great mistake. You should want more insider trading, not less. You want to give the people most likely to have knowledge about deficiencies of the company an incentive to make the public aware of that.

Only the government could think it's a good idea to chase information out of capital markets. The market is there to direct capital to its best uses.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:11 PM | Comments (9)
But Silence Dogood thinks:

I can't begin to know what or how much regulation we should have because truth be told I just don't understand it enough. Unfortunately I think the same could be said for those in public office who are creating the regulations. Enron it seems to me (see caveat in first sentence) was more about simply keeping a fake set of books. Any insider trading may have profited the execs but had little effect on the overall loss of value.

Where I part ways with Gordon Gekko is the shift toward "greed is good". I may get hammered here for this, but I completely disagree. Greed tends to be a short term view, and here is where I see investors and the company they are investing in as not sharing the same goals. You can say that the investors are technically the company, but companies get swallowed up, sold off, and broken up, all of which can be very good for the investors and very bad for the company. The current mortgage mess has awoken people to the pyramid scheme style of complex market derivatives, but I contend that any time you make money without providing a good or a service it is deep down a house of cards just waiting to tumble. Is this where regulation steps in, or could you have prosecuted many in the industry with fraud if the right people had been paying attention? More regulators and less regulation, so we keep the regulation light and simple, but scrutinize the transactions closely for compliance with existing law? I think the complexity of the system overwhelmed not only the regulators, but many inside the system as well. But again with pressure for short term gains, long term prudence flies out the window.

Posted by: Silence Dogood at October 26, 2009 7:52 PM
But jk thinks:

Silence, I would have to blame government meddling both for the short-term greed vs. long-term investment you oppose and the hypervolatility in derivatives.

Austrian Business Cycle Theory is based in large part upon the tradeoff of current production for future gains. Rational actors could make intelligent decisions about this but are forced to adapt to government regulation, GAAP accounting rules (and, let me say it for the others around here, fiat currency). I think you might agree that a good balance of short-term and long-term thinking is required. I think regulation forces short-term thinking more than evil ol' greed.

I may misread you, but I have to reject any suggestion that manufacturing a tire is fundamentally different from creating or investing in derivatives. Derivatives are useful for price discovery and invaluable for getting the risk in the hands of those best equipped to handle it. If you make cookies and sell them in Europe, you can hedge your positions on commodities and currency so that you are not wiped out when sugar rises or the dollar falls.

That has value and is no worse than betting your life insurance company that you're going to die. The derivatives you're concerned with were a problem because the asset behind them fell precipitously. Here I suggest mortgage backed securities and derivatives based on them were more volatile because of -- not in spire of -- government regulation.

Posted by: jk at October 26, 2009 8:52 PM
But Silence Dogood thinks:

But somebody has to make cookies. It's not the folks buying the sugar derivatives.

"because the asset behind them fell precipitously." That I have to disagree with. It was not the drop in housing values that caused the crash, but the crash that caused a drop in housing values. The derivative market had run through so many levels that no one knew the value of what they were buying. Once they hit the point where there was no one farther down the pyramid willing to purchase the debt (or insure against its default) the notes came due and the paper mountain crumbled. Once this happened the state your income easy credit vanished in a heartbeat and the mortgage takers couldn't keep refinancing to stave off balloon payments and high interest. Those folks were just as complicit in the whole scam, but it was the collapse of the financing system that caused foreclosures and fire sales that resulted in the big drop in value. I chicken your egg!

I will readily agree that the government's belief that everyone should be a homeowner and that owning a home automatically built wealth was the first push that got the ball rolling. I will also contend though that the ability to bundle and sell a mortgage, then sell derivatives of those bundles and on down the line effectively created a pyramid whose only value lay in the ability to add a layer underneath you. A lot of money changed hands without any good produced or real value service provided, thus the bailout required to put money back in the system.

Posted by: Silence Dogood at October 27, 2009 12:55 AM
But jk thinks:

You should have voted for my Buddy, Senator John McCain, last year -- he sees the crisis exactly like you.

I cannot prove mine but will point out that you are omitting the 800 lb. gorilla from yours: Fan & Fred. Imagine either of our scenarios without a government backed purchaser/securitizer of the mortgages, and poof! no more crisis. The government push for home ownership you speak of, and a negative real interest rate.

All three have the common thread of government and I would rank all of them as being significantly more important that "greed and corruption on Wall Street" (Send McCain in because "he's faced tougher guys than this..." I have to stop now, I'm getting ill.)

More importantly, I am not giving ground on the derivative versus the cookie lady. No she makes the sumptuous morsels, but she cannot stay in business without hedging her commodities or currency risk -- just like a store cannot continue without fire insurance. I disagree madly with the mercantilist mentality. To hit home, it places the manufacturer above the engineer -- you don't make nothin', pal, it's those salt of the earth guys who bolt your designs together.

Posted by: jk at October 27, 2009 12:36 PM
But Silence Dogood thinks:

True enough JK, at least you can compile your own code, without someone to produce my designs they are worth the paper they're printed on. Heck, I am even a manager now so I am even more a drain on society.

I do have to give you the 800lb gorilla - I kinda fessed up and hinted at it already. But, (you just knew there was another but didn't you?) Mr. Banker could have kept his ethics high and required proof of ability to pay to secure a loan. The mortgage industry has a right to complain about Uncle Sam's heavy hand, but once the game was afoot they were more than happy to create a method to enrich themselves along the path to destruction.

Posted by: Silence Dogood at October 28, 2009 12:02 AM
But jk thinks:

Kumbaya, Silence, we are near complete agreement. AN economics professor offers an A to any student in his 101 class who can find a pro-business sentence in Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations.

I love freedom and free enterprise -- those louts who profit from it tend to be rent seekers and price fixers -- just as Smith told us in 1776. Look at them lining up to be the last eaten in ObamaCare.

No, I don't love the banker (except for Perry) but I love the idea of derivatives: getting risk in the hands of those who can best handle it.

Posted by: jk at October 28, 2009 12:53 PM

October 23, 2009

Quote of the Day

The role of Obama courtier may suit Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow just fine, but for any real journalist, being blessed as "legitimate" by a powerful politician is a challenge to prove one's independence. -- James Taranto
Posted by John Kranz at 4:45 PM | Comments (0)

October 20, 2009

Quote of the Day

And yeah, it is also odd for Weisberg to denounce Fox's shrill tone while accusing them of trying to kill people because they hate America. -- Michael C. Moynihan
Posted by John Kranz at 1:02 PM | Comments (0)

October 19, 2009

John Stossel's New Blog Home

And welcome to the blogroll:

http://stossel.blogs.foxbusiness.com/

Posted by John Kranz at 8:03 PM | Comments (2)
But DevilDogBrew thinks:

JK,

Just popping in this morning to say hola.

Three Sources = interesting mettle

Glad to see that John Stossel has a new blog home, I'll be checking it out.

And a bit off topic:

1) Afghanistan - Operation MRE is in hand and being enjoyed by all. Thanks for your generosity!

2) Just bought your CD and am looking forward to its arrival. We'll call it an early Christmas present. Just so happens that my wife and I share zero musical talent but love to dance (salsa/merengue) fortunately our three man cubs avoided the gene deficiency and are into music, the oldest is off to college and otherwise occupied though his fiancee is a nightingale, my 16 year old plays piano daily & my youngest is an accomplished, standout singer with multiple solo performances under his belt, he's now a part of a barber shop group...

Hope the stop over isn't an intrusion.

With Utmost Respect ~ Semper Fi, Hank

and may I ask? How did you first come across Devil Dog Brew?

p.s. Another common thread, my mother has MS, strange series of coincidences

Posted by: DevilDogBrew at October 20, 2009 11:54 AM
But jk thinks:

Devil Dog Brew,

Five minutes later and you could have commented on your own post above.

We are honored by your presence and would love your thoughts on any topic.

I am glad for Stossel, but commented when he went to FOX that he is now preaching to the choir and the world lost one of it best voices for liberty. People would tune in to hear Barbara Walters interview some pop star and would be confronted by real thought and reason. Happy for Mr. Stossel, but sad that his voice is off ABC.

Cancel that PayPal order! That is an old out-of-print CD and I would be happy to send you a copy. I'd also encourage you to drop by the coffeehouse both to see my stuff and to encourage your kids to do guest videos.

Best to your Mom. It is tough sometimes, but I always feel there are "worse cards in the deck."

Posted by: jk at October 20, 2009 12:07 PM

September 23, 2009

Missing Al Hunt

I appreciate The Wall Street Journal's efforts to allow contrary views on its editorial page. Al Hunt used to exasperate me, but his columns were generally worth a read and some serious thought.

Thomas "Whassa Matta Wif Kansas?" Frank, conversely, leaves me completely cold. He seems separated from facts and reason. One might as well wander over to the Huffington Post -- the humor is much better. Today, he pens a column about those nutty Tea Party protesters who don't realize how great more government is. He actually calls for Democrats to engage, for which he deserves props. But the column is pretty pedestrian and adds little to the debate.

Why do I link, then? Rupert's revenge -- the article is accompanied by THE WORST, MOST HORRIBLY AWFUL picture of Speaker Pelosi that you will ever see. (Warning: don't let the kids see this, they won't sleep for weeks!)

Posted by John Kranz at 3:52 PM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

What horror movie was that taken from?!

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at September 24, 2009 9:15 AM

All Hail Harsanyi!

Well, we lost John Stossel to FOX, but at least Colorado has David Harsanyi. He's not any more impressed with our Science Czar's paternalism than I. I excerpt 'cause I do, but you have to read this one all the way through.

There is one question we all have to answer: What's more important? Negligibly reducing "carbon pollution" through coercive policies or protecting personal freedom and allowing real markets to work? That's the tradeoff. Parenting won't change the question.

Remember when George W. Bush's chief of staff, Andrew Card, claimed that the president saw the American people "as we think about a 10-year- old child"? His comment, understandably, caused much mockery and disdain.

The problem, apparently, wasn't the paternalist sentiment ó it was the parent offering it. What we needed was a brainy, grown-up administration to harangue and regulate us into submission.


Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 3:09 PM | Comments (0)

September 17, 2009

When Cops Call 911


Posted by John Kranz at 4:31 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith thinks:

A police officer and Alice B. Toklas brownies? I'm thinking the real irony would have had something to do with pot-laden doughnuts.

The newsreader's facial expressions, by the way? Priceless.

Posted by: Keith at September 18, 2009 2:56 PM
But jk thinks:

Yup, her reaction is what makes it worth posting.

Forgot to hat-tip @michellebranch, one of two celebrity types I follow on Twitter.

Posted by: jk at September 18, 2009 3:36 PM

September 11, 2009

John Stossel

I am still on the 20/20 email list so that I can keep up with John Stossel.

ABC viewers may miss his masterful explanations of liberty and free markets, but they're still in good hands:

In her first in-depth interview since the death of her brother Michael Jackson, La Toya Jackson opened up exclusively to Barbara Walters about the family's grief.

The Republic weeps.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:46 PM | Comments (0)

September 10, 2009

The last MSM liberty lover has turned out the lights

I wish a bright fellow good luck on his new gig, but the Republic weeps:

First on TVNewser: John Stossel, the longtime ABC News correspondent and co-anchor of "20/20," is leaving ABC to join Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network. TVNewser has learned Stossel will host a weekly, one-hour program for the 2-year-old business channel. He's expected to signed a multi-year deal with Fox which will include regular appearances on Fox News Channel during daytime and primetime. He'll also host four, hour-long specials on Fox News, much like the business/consumer specials he'd hosted for years on ABC.

Much like the ABC specials, except he'll be preaching to a much smaller choir and typical TV viewers will lose their last place to hear the benefits of Capitalism and liberty.

Hat-tip: @mkhammer

Posted by John Kranz at 1:41 PM | Comments (2)
But T. Greer thinks:

Sad day for America! Now the public sphere is polarized in toto. Am I the only one not scared by this?

Posted by: T. Greer at September 10, 2009 8:31 PM
But jk thinks:

I was serious, if a touch overwrought with "the Republic weeps." Professor Reynolds echoed similar sentiments (well after ThreeSources...) and updates:

"A couple of readers wonder why I think the move is ‚Äútoo bad.‚ÄĚ It‚Äôs because with Stossel at ABC, some viewers might be exposed to non-conventional (at ABC) views. I very much doubt that ABC will replace Stossel with someone of similar libertarian inclination, though I‚Äôd love to be proven wrong. Fox viewers, on the other hand, will appreciate the quality of his work, but it‚Äôs not likely to be the same kind of wake-up call it is to the Barbara Walters crowd . . . .
Posted by: jk at September 11, 2009 12:42 PM

September 3, 2009

Good News / Bad News

GOOD NEWS: You're rich!

BBC: Online Politics Reserved for Rich
According to the report 35% of US adults on incomes of at least $100,000 (£62,000) participate in two or more online political activities compared to just 8% of adults on incomes of less than $20,000 (£12,000).

BAD NEWS:
Instapundit
ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Eric Thompson writes: ďSince when is 100 grand a year Ďrich?í How about: Since Obama promised to only raise taxes on the Ďrichí.Ē Got it in one, Eric . . . .

Folks are focusing on the $100K == rich question, but I am more interested in the exact level of "Duuuuh!" (I suggest it's up to four u's and an exclamation point.) Those with more money have more interest, more time, and most importantly, more to lose in the political process. The good people at the Beeb show this as a digital divide scenario, but I would suggest all of politics is focused on higher activity at higher income levels.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:55 PM | Comments (0)

August 25, 2009

Media and Blogging

Many serious journalists like to make light of bloggers. They like to compare the most marginal bloggers to the best professionals.

I can see both sides, but I don't see anybody in the MSM who did the work of Michael Yon or Michael Totten. Nor do they look at the bottom of the media. But I am.

Channel 31 is reporting the vandalism of a Denver Democratic Office, unapologetically giving the Democratic line, interviewing the office manager, who talked about heath care reform opponents and the quality of debate and yadda yadda...

I had my netbook out and Insty is already debunking it. Gateway Pundit reports that all is not as it appears,.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:11 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Saw the girly man's photo at JK's Gateway Pundit link. Reminds me of the Steve Miller lyric from The Joker:

"Some people call me Moe-reese"

And just what is "the pompitous of love anyway?"

Cool!

Posted by: johngalt at August 26, 2009 3:44 PM

Blog Label of the Day

I'm thinking this is a new Award, but Ann Althouse grabs it. Call them Tags, Labels, Categories, whatever, this one is pretty good:

Labels: genitalia, Rush Limbaugh
Posted by John Kranz at 6:25 PM | Comments (0)

August 6, 2009

The AP Again

Should move on, should move on, But

Acting with unusual haste, the Senate readied a $2 billion fill-up Thursday night for "cash for clunkers," the economy-boosting program that caught the fancy of car buyers and instantly increased sale...

Whiter whites and brighter colors!

Posted by John Kranz at 8:01 PM | Comments (0)

I Withdraw

Nope, I could never write for the AP. I just don't have it in me:

WASHINGTON Ė Sonia Sotomayor stands on the verge of making history as the Supreme Court's first Hispanic justice, despite staunch opposition from Republicans who call her ill-suited for the bench.

See, I'd've said "racist Republican bastards;" that would have ruined the integrity of the piece.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:00 PM | Comments (2)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

It just frosts me everytime the MSM trumpets Sotomayor as historic, while failing to mention that the Democrats filibustered Miguel Estrada. But that was the game plan with Estrada all along. The Dems simply could not allow Republicans to have a "first" with Hispanics. Politics over country.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at August 7, 2009 12:09 PM
But jk thinks:

Here's history for ya: Justice Alito will be the last white male to ever be appointed to the Supreme Court. The pull toward the next historic "first" will be too great. President Bush will go down in history for his "historic last."

Posted by: jk at August 7, 2009 12:35 PM

August 4, 2009

Trenchant as Hell!


Posted by John Kranz at 2:52 PM | Comments (0)

July 31, 2009

Bias?

Call me a partisan hack, but I don't remember stories like this when that feller from Texas was living in the White House:

Recession eases; GDP dip smaller than expected

WASHINGTON Ė The economy sank at a pace of just 1 percent in the second quarter of the year, a new government report shows. It was a better-than-expected showing that provided the strongest signal yet that the longest recession since World War II is finally winding down.


Happy Days are freakin' here again, eh?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:09 AM | Comments (3)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Yup, you may recall that I've been pointing out that Aversa and Crutsinger are the AP's perma-bears...but only if a Republican is president. While Bush was in office, the AP's editors would whitewash stories that originally weren't pessimistic.

If this were a year ago, and especially during an election year, the story would have been:

No end in sight to recession
U.S. GDP declined by less than expected in the second quarter, marking just the latest quarter of the longest recession in seven decades...

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at July 31, 2009 12:51 PM
But jk thinks:

Amen -- plus some casualty figures from Iraq.

Posted by: jk at July 31, 2009 3:15 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

That reminds me -- the military, I was reading somewhere, has a new policy of not reporting Afghani enemy deaths?

Some days you just can't win, even if you really are.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at July 31, 2009 4:48 PM

July 22, 2009

Quote of the Day

And so early:

It is, of course, not outside the realm of possibility that Ezra [Klein], Young Turk, is possessed of a keener analytic mind than Greg Mankiw; I'm not opining here on substance, but only on the seemliness of career track. It's the realm of possibility, however, in which Spock has a goatee. -- Kenneth Anderson @ The Volkh Conspiracy

UPDATE: The professor seems to be tking things in stride: Whatever

Posted by John Kranz at 10:49 AM | Comments (0)

July 18, 2009

Props for Facebook

It's increasingly popular for the media to run down Twitter and bloggers to run down Facebook. I remain a fan (as many of you know) for several reasons.

I follow mostly real friends on Facebook. Some are bloggers but I relate to them in that venue as friends and it is very unusual for me to post anything remotely political in that forum. On Twitter, I follow mostly political people. The few celebrities seem pretty vapid against a sea of journalists and bloggers and politicians.

An exception is that I became a fan of Lance Armstrong on Facebook. I am again glued to Le Tour and it is interesting to get an extra inside look at each stage. If you have not checked out his livestrong.com -- I highly recommend that as well.

The point is, and I don't know how many are following, in today's stage Lance's loyal lieutenant for all his stage victories, George Hincape, had a chance to lead the race and wear the yellow jersey for himself. Armstrong and Hincape are on different teams now, but -- as I wrote last year --- the race features a lot of cooperation among different teams to advance goals that they may share.

Hincape got out on a break. Armstrong's team, Astana, wanted to make sure that Hincape did not run up a big lead, AG2R needed to defend the yellow jersey but lacked the power to do it solo. Columbia wanted to get Hincape the yellow but had a second goal to keep Mark Cavendish close enough to get involved in any sprint at the end. Garmin and Columbia have a rivalry that extends into bad blood.

Enough pacing from the peloton kept Hincape's lead down to where he missed the yellow by five seconds. He was visibly shaken in an interview. A bit of gentlemanliness remains in the sport and he felt that Astana had paced the peloton too hard -- that his old buddy Lance Armstrong had churlishly deprived him of a great honor for no real purpose.

In Armstrong's interview, Lance blamed Gamin but it was unsettled.

The point, jk? You mentioned something about a point? Armstrong wrote on his Facebook page, to his 875,878 fans, that: "St14 done. Sounds like there's a bit of confusion over this one. No one and i mean no one, wanted George in yellow more than me." The point is that pre-FB and Twitter, there would be no way for an athlete or celebrity to get a message out like that.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:05 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Fair point, and other than stalking fears I've never had a bad opinion of Facebook.

I had a sports observation of my own today - Watching Fox Saturday Baseball coverage of Angels @ Athletics today we saw former Rockie Matt Holliday go 2 for 3 with a walk, 2 RBI, 2 stolen bases and a run scored through 6 innings after which his A's trailed 8-5. In the Angels half of the third inning, however, he caught a fly ball for the 2nd out and threw a pea to catcher Landon Powell that beat the tagged runner from third by 10 feet. Powell dropped it, leading to that plus 2 more runs scored in the inning. Making matters worse, Holliday recorded the 3rd out on a shallow fly ball to left, surviving a collision with shortstop Orlando Cabrera in the process. Oh, and Holliday is the subject of trade rumors approaching the deadline.

The point this time? I had to wonder if Matt wishes he'd signed the multi-year, multi-million dollar contract offer from the Rockies (49-41) instead of forcing a trade to the A's(38-50).

Posted by: johngalt at July 18, 2009 6:57 PM

July 12, 2009

Was that not unprecedented?

Don't watch this more than 11 times:



From The Virgunian via Instapundt

Posted by John Kranz at 11:14 AM | Comments (6)
But jaafar thinks:

I watched it 12 times. Now do I get 100 lashes with a wet noodle?

Posted by: jaafar at July 12, 2009 1:05 PM
But jk thinks:

I think you're safe, jaafar, our enforcement division around here is pretty lax...

Posted by: jk at July 13, 2009 11:11 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Besides, a guy can't really be blamed for finding this lamestream media faceplant so compelling as to watch it an unhealthy number of times.

Posted by: johngalt at July 14, 2009 11:24 PM
But jk thinks:

But-but-but, wasn't it unprecedented in its awesomeness?

Posted by: jk at July 15, 2009 10:33 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Pardon me: "unprecedented lamestream media faceplant..."

Posted by: johngalt at July 15, 2009 3:50 PM
But jk thinks:

Heh. We are having too much fun now. That was a suggested quote for CNN's Don Lemon. But it works pretty well as you inferred as well!

Posted by: jk at July 15, 2009 4:27 PM

July 9, 2009

HOPE AND CHANGE!

I'm not sure Professor Reynolds has been fair, highlighting bad economic data with "Hope and Change." No doubt they'd take a victory lap on good news -- and no doubt they're hurting, not helping, the economy. But, we are in a complicated global contraction and I don't think you can pin everything on President Obama.

That said, you have got to appreciate this AP story:

565K new jobless claims, lowest level since Jan.

WASHINGTON Ė The number of newly laid-off workers filing initial claims for jobless benefits last week fell to lowest level since early January, largely due to changes in the timing of auto industry layoffs.

Continuing claims, meanwhile, unexpectedly jumped to a record-high.


Happy days are freakin' here again, huh AP? I'm not sure I remember this rosy coverage when that Texas guy was living at 1600 Penn.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:30 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

Limbaugh likes to say that bringing us hope for change is the only campaign promise Obama has delivered on. In the meantime, day by day, he lowers the bar for his 2012 opponent.

Posted by: johngalt at July 9, 2009 11:42 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Back in 2001, every week it was pointed out that jobless claims over 400K meant a contracting economy.

Where is the same point made today? It's the same AP, Reuters and CNN "economics" writers.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at July 9, 2009 11:43 PM

June 23, 2009

Can't Handle Netflix

Ezra Klein, the President's economy-apologist-in-chief at the WaPO, cannot quite handle the complexities of movies by mail:

My Horrible Relationship With Netflix

Matt Yglesias has a quick post on the Netflix movies he rented this weekend. I don't. Because I've had the same three sitting in my drawer for almost two years now. That's literally hundreds of dollars I've donated to Netflix to help subsidize the fees of people who actually use the service. Meanwhile, one of the movies is cracked and I can't find the envelopes for the other two. So I continue my philanthropic donations to the Netflix Fund for the Needy. And every month, I loathe myself just a little bit more.


All pretty handleable at the website, Mister K. I've got my things I put off, too. But you could have fixed this faster than blogging it.

Via @mkhammer who says "Isn't this same relationship @ezraklein wants lots of young, healthy people to have with insurance?"

Posted by John Kranz at 6:16 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith thinks:

Dang. Whaddaya think will be next? A car czar who knows nothing about cars? A treasurer who doesn't pay his taxes? An attorney general who doesn't understand the law? A Supreme Court Justice who doesn't feel constrained to pay attention to the law?

Oh, wait. Nevermind.

Posted by: Keith at June 23, 2009 6:27 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

There are insufficient profanities to preface "idiot" when describing this waste of DNA. Just when you thought Ezra Klein was only one of the stupidest people alive, he had to do this in an attempt to lock the top spot.

Keith, you forgot: a CIA head who's just a PR spokesman, not someone actually capable of directing intelligence.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 24, 2009 10:48 AM
But Keith thinks:

Perry, I'm from California; hearing ANY reference to Leon Panetta that includes the word "intelligence" is simultaneously laughable and scary.

Can we all agree that the words "Czar" and "Idiot" have become synonyms?

Posted by: Keith at June 24, 2009 11:58 AM

Vox Populi

Scrivrner.net posts:

Ezra Klein says that the latest poll results find that national health care is very popular with the public, so failing to enact it would be "resolutely, aggressively, anti-democratic" -- a denial of our responsibility in a democracy.

Paul Krugman says that the latest poll results find that the public prefers reducing the deficit over increasing government spending. But the voters "don't know much" about policy, "So the moral for Obama is, of course, to ignore this poll" -- anything else would be a denial of our responsibility in a democracy.

Discuss.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:38 PM | Comments (5)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Heh - great juxtaposition.

Though the original post does not say, I suspect that Klein is refering to a recent NYT poll. As it turns out, that poll showing strong support for a national healthcare system was taken from a sample comprised fo 46% Democrats and 24% Republicans (or thereabouts). There are two ways to monkey with a poll: jimmy the sample or jimmy the question. Of course, you always have the option of ignoring the result in either case, as Krugman suggests, by deeming the sample to be idiots.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at June 23, 2009 3:09 PM
But jk thinks:

Versus 46% idiots?

I didn't just say that, did I?

Posted by: jk at June 23, 2009 3:45 PM
But Terri thinks:

Do you all remember this poll out of the NYtimes saying we all wanted guaranteed health care and would be happy to pay as much as $500 more per year for it.
Sheesh.
Idiots. You're right.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/02/washington/02poll.html?_r=2&hp&oref=slogin

Posted by: Terri at June 23, 2009 4:11 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Who wouldn't be happy paying $500 per year for healthcare? That's about half of the monthly premium for a family. But then you have to ask yourself, "How much care could any system afford to give me for $500 per year?" Idiots indeed.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at June 23, 2009 4:52 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

My wife and I have a high-deductible plan that costs a hair under $10,000 a year. The bulk is paid for by my employer.

Basically, we pay the first $2300 per calendar year, and above that, 20% up to $2300 per calendar year. It's a good plan for us, just in case something happens. People just don't realize how expensive a fully comprehensive plan is. We have a legally binding agreement that if either of us gets cancer, needs a heart operation, etc., our insurer is going to pay for it.

The plan would be less expensive if, first, we could buy the policy from someone out of state, and second, if insurers started rating policyholders on risk. They can do that now, I think since 2006, but it hasn't caught on. Previously, smokers, non-smokers, people with family histories of heart disease and/or cancer, were lumped into the same category.

But hey, this is the age where Obama will help us pay for our mortgages and put gas in our cars.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 25, 2009 12:54 PM

June 10, 2009

JK Defends David Letterman from Swift Boaters

Sort of. He's an irrelevant, not-funny, non-entity. And the YouTube clip of his attacking Governor Palin's daughter certainly yells "creepy old man" more than "hip, sophisticated cultural icon." (Aren't you glad I am not "defending" you?)

But conservatives are over-reacting when they paraphrase it as a joke about rape. Even without it, the joke is out of bounds. And I will join with my social conservative buddies in the big GOP tent to ask why the feminist left is so silent because the Palins are Republicans.

But my Twitter is atwitter and they all use the word rape which Letterman did not imply. The joke plays off the family's fecundity and supposed promiscuity. Any allegation of coercion works against the joke, not for it.

I'm not defending the humor value or appropriateness of the joke. But I do think that a lot of conservatives are overreaching. I call it "Swift Boating" because the Swift Boat Veterans had legitimate, verifiable complaints about Senator Kerry's character and service record. Because they overreached and claimed things which could not be proven, their legitimate points were dismissed.

Mary Katherine Ham and Jim Treacher have been guilty of this. It has been a huge twitter topic for days, and Treacher links today to a Doctor Zero post on Hotair. It's overwrought.

Posted by John Kranz at 8:07 PM | Comments (12)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

I'd in fact like to hear about this 10% not true. Perhaps I didn't hear them all, or if I did hear that 10%, the other 90% was so slam-dunk that the 10% didn't surprise me.

Letterman made a stupid attempt at a joke, which turned out to be about statutory rape. The Palin daughter at the ballgame was her 14-year-old, not Bristol. Even if he referred to her non-adult daughter, at minimum it was tasteless and stupid, and any man with a shred of decency would offer a genuine apology.

Letterman, though, offered a non-apology designed only to boost his show's ratings. Were I the father of a girl so insulted, I'd appear on Letterman's show only to make him apologize through newly broken teeth.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 11, 2009 4:19 PM
But Terri thinks:

JK,
That's why I'm only halfway agreeing with you. Letterman surely didn't MEAN to make a joke about rape.
Or slutty Latino ball players for that matter.

But you're asking the conservative blogosphere to back off.
Why?

Shame is what's needed here and Letterman is getting a good dose. People may well be tuning in to see what it's all about but they surely aren't finding him edgy and hip.

Some bloggers go ballistic about a lot of things and this is just one more. I don't believe that having your standard ranters adding this to their rants is going to bring a black eye onto conservatives in general.

That just circles you back to "Attention, all conservatives. Behave as civil adults and you'll get ahead".
No - they stay above the fray and soon are tarred and feathered as racist, uncaring, old white guys.

Feminists are not going to hold Letterman accountable for bad taste, so let those who care do so without worrying about how the conservative movement might be seen by liberals.

Posted by: Terri at June 11, 2009 4:40 PM
But jk thinks:

I'm asking the conservative blogosphere (which has a pretty poor record of listening to me) to keep their complaints responsible. You can say it was tasteless, out-of-bounds and not funny. You can even go on the show and, responsibly, break some teeth.

My objections are:
-- that they are objecting to a joke he did not make;
-- that we are hurtling into socialism and allowing 31-year old Yale dropout Hillary Clinton campaign managers to "rewrite the rules of Capitalism" and some bloggers itch for a culture war.

Posted by: jk at June 11, 2009 7:13 PM
But Lisa M thinks:

Terri, they ARE finding it edgy and hip. Letterman is cool again. People who haven't given him a passing thought in years are now all buzzing about him. Read some of the liberal blogs--they're saying Palin brought this on herself, she put her family in the spotlight and therefore had it coming. A self described liberal feminist woman called in to Hannity today saying this very thing, and writing it off as the price of being in the public eye.

Palin is a joke to these people--an incompetent naif who can see Alaska from her house. That's how they will always think of her, just like Dan Quayle will forever be known as the man who couldn't spell potato. That liberals are not held to these same exacting standards is well known and frustrating, but if you think we have even a fraction of the power necessary to "shame" them into decent behavior, then you have not been paying attention.

Liberals are the hypersensitive jackasses who find offense at every little thing. Not conservatives. Sticks and stones; ultimately Letterman's joke says more about Letterman than it does about the Palin family. Let that be what people remember, not the wounded sensibilities of conservatives.

jk--I've been a lurker for a long time. Three Sources is one of my favorite daily reads. Thanks for the linky love.

Posted by: Lisa M at June 11, 2009 7:14 PM
But Terri thinks:

Sorry - 1 more comment.

JK, the joke was made and it can only be assumed it was about the 14yo - hence, rape. Technically. He owns it. If people want to call him on it - I say go for it. Someone ought to say something and they are. Good for them.

Most people don't understand the rush towards socialism. They want their "free" health care.

Lisa,
Liberals always find themselves hip and edgy. This isn't new.

Posted by: Terri at June 11, 2009 9:55 PM
But Jeff H thinks:

At least Letterman didn't call Sasha and Malia little nappy headed ho's.

Posted by: Jeff H at June 12, 2009 5:33 PM

June 8, 2009

Et Tu, AP?

This Associated Press article does not read like an Administration press release. Anomoly or sign of the times?

Obama repackages stimulus plans with old promises

[...]

By now, according to earlier White House economic models, the nation's unemployment rate should be on the decline. The forecasts used to drum up support for the plan projected today's unemployment would be about 8 percent. Instead, it sits at 9.4 percent, the highest in more than 25 years.

Some analysts believe the White House is still not being realistic, that Obama will be lucky if any real job creation from his recovery effort is seen by the end of the year, let alone the employment explosion he predicts.

"I think these estimates are overly optimistic," said Arpitha Bykere, a senior analyst with RGE Monitor.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:08 PM | Comments (2)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

"Overly optimistic"?!? The figures of "jobs created or saved" are pure fiction unsupportable by any evidence or objective analysis.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at June 8, 2009 7:19 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Remember your Bastiat. Any jobs created by the stimulus have an equal offset in economic production lost to other jobs in the economy.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 8, 2009 10:36 PM

June 5, 2009

Hollywood and Media Leftism

Here is a 31 minute video that I highly recommend. Peter Robinson provides a very thoughtful interview with Andrew Brietbart.

There's no foaming at the mouth, but it is a very reflective and serious discussion of the severity and effects of a left-controlled entertainment sector. I know that's long -- it is worth it.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

UPDATE: Link fixed, sorry!

Posted by John Kranz at 5:13 PM | Comments (2)
But T. Greer thinks:

JK, while I have no ill thoughts regarding your musical talent, I think you might just have provided us with a different link than you meant to.

Posted by: T. Greer at June 9, 2009 12:55 AM
But jk thinks:

Dangit! Link fixed.

I really wanted you to see it tg. You had posted an interview segment where you rightfully praised Al Jazeera's Riz Khan for providing an uplifting and informative view of the Indian Elections. This segment does not provide a diversity of opinion, but it shines a lot of light.

Posted by: jk at June 9, 2009 11:54 AM

June 1, 2009

Reagan's Fault!

Both Don Luskin and the Heritage Foundry Blog have a little sport with Paul Krugman's column today. The Foundry says "We Didnít Know Krugmanís Nobel was for Fiction" and Luskin calls it "One of Paul Krugman's most evil columns yet, this morning, in which he blames Ronald Reagan for today's financial crisis, thanks to his signing of the in 1982,"

Clearly, everything was going along just fine, until that no-good B actor deregulated the banking system. We'd have been fine with Freddie and Fannie, we could handle the CRA, monetary policy is pretty much irrelevant. But the Garn-St. Germain Act set the stage...

Posted by John Kranz at 4:45 PM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Hey now, I find that unfair. Reagan was a decent actor IMO, above the B-movie norm. So I'd have phrased it that he was an actor who happened to be in B-movies.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 2, 2009 12:59 PM

May 19, 2009

May have to get cable back...

I remember not thinking too much of this guy's FOXNews show, but watching his ReasonTV interview, I will give it another shot.





He makes the Penn Gilette error of promoting libertine as much as liberty, but he is dead on on DAWG, media, and Bill Maher. Woo Hoo.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

UPDATE: By the way, I can watch FOXNews (and Kudlow and ESPN and..) on my wife's cell phone. Not a bad deal.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:38 PM | Comments (1)
But AlexC thinks:

Gutfield & Red Eye are the only thing I watch on Fox.

I DVR it, it's a really fun show...

Posted by: AlexC at May 21, 2009 1:00 PM

May 14, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Think Anti-Stosselian Thoughts

I am a big fan of The Speculist blog. But I think Phil Bowermaster uncharacteristically misses today on an Insty-linked whack at John Stossel.

I'll sit still for a few criticisms of Stossel, even though he is the only light of liberty on network TV. I thought his flagship efforts to get daredevils to foot the cost of their rescues was, if not wrong, the wrong place to put emphasis. We are talking small beans and local control; I cannot get really worked up over it and realize that I might very well do something stupid someday...maybe...

But Bowermaster goes after Stossel's assertion that "America Needs to Do Less for Its Senior Citizens." He parses a paragraph pretty closely to make his point that end-of-life health care is extremely expensive and having just had his father rescued from Cancer, that we might look for ways to provide it instead of vilifying geezerdom.

Fair point, but his argument gets pretty personal. Stossel is painting Seniors as "The Other" (oh jeez, we're doing LitCrit on 20/20 now?) And his comparison of 6:1 spending on seniors vs. children is some Pelosiesque attempt to accuse them of stealing from children.

I will quote that great champion of the Right Wing, Garrison Keillor. Even he lambasted the AARP once as a group of folks who lobby kids to provide more than we'd ever agree to give even our own parents. I think you could suggest that Stossel took the wrong track on Medicare but you cannot look me in the say that his premise is wrong. We are set to bankrupt the country and strangle wealth creation because no legislator dares ask that maybe Warren Buffet could pay for his own doctor or that some of us might have to gasp! consider working past 62.

It is intergenerational theft through state coercion. Nice that it makes Bowermaster feel good, but I am going to have to go with Stossel on this one.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:38 PM | Comments (2)
But mdmhvonpa thinks:

Garrison Keillor ... Right Wing? SIR! You jest!
http://www.intellectualconservative.com/article3671.html

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at May 15, 2009 12:00 PM
But jk thinks:

Jest I do, mdmh. My point was that even a loony lefty like Keillor saw the AARP agenda as a step too far.

In fairness, I must admit that I went on an internet search for the exact quote. Searches for Garrison Keillor and AARP turn up many many links to fawning articles in the AARP magazine and no links that I could find to his disapprobation.

It seems we have always been at war with Eurasia...

Posted by: jk at May 15, 2009 12:48 PM

May 7, 2009

John Stossel

The MSM's one voice of sanity has a special this week: You Can't Even Talk About It!" Taboos include:

AMERICA NEEDS TO DO LESS FOR ITS SENIOR CITIZENS. You thought Bernie Madoff ran a Ponzi scheme? Medicare makes Madoff's look small. Maybe we should call Medicare: "Bernie Madoffcare." ...

PREGNANCY DISCRIMINATION LAWSUITS. "Sometimes the laws that are intended to help women like me actually end up hurting women like me. All of a sudden, a potential employer is looking at me and thinking ... 'she just might turn around and sue us. That makes it less likely that I'm going to get hired.'"

THE BEST WAY TO SAVE MANY ENDANGERED SPECIES IS TO EAT THEM.
International bans on the trade of rare animal parts (tiger organs, elephant tusks, rhino horns) have been about as successful as the international war on drugs...

RESCUING IDIOTS. Thrill-seekers hoping to surf the most difficult ocean wave, bushwhack through treacherous back-country terrain or catch the biggest ice-water fish Ö sometimes take unnecessary risks, disregarding weather forecasts or warning signs. If they need to be rescued, let's bill them for the cost of the rescue. New Hampshire does that. I confront the rescued, who say "no!" tax dollars should pay.

LET THEM DO STEROIDS. After years of hand-wringing over 'roids in baseball, the Olympics, and other sports, isn't it time to acknowledge that athletes will always look for ways to get a competitive edge ... and instead of treating them like children, let them go ahead and JUST DO IT? ...

RADIATING FOOD MAKES IT SAFE TO EAT. The CDC says that every year, millions of Americans get food poisoning. 5,000 die. Last month President Obama told us the fact that 95 percent of food is NOT inspected by the FDA, is "Ö a hazard to the public health Ö " But he didn't mention that there is one way to make food safe: irradiate it.


Posted by John Kranz at 11:31 AM | Comments (0)

April 30, 2009

Longmont Times-Call Auditions for MSM

Blog friend Terri takes some humorous and effective whacks at the small Longmont Times-Call, hyping a front page story about recession-fueled military recruitment.

Nice caveat..."some". So youíd think they'd have one example anyway, right??
Sadly, no.

Small town papers are certainly not immune from MSMism. There are some microscopic papers in Lafayette and Louisville that are slightly to the left of Pravda.

Read the whole thing -- sorry it took me three days to link it.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:22 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Good catch Terri. As much as I prefer reading a hardcopy newspaper to hyperlinked virtual stories I just can't bring myself to subscribe to any of them. This is a perfect example of why that is so.

Posted by: johngalt at May 1, 2009 3:33 PM

April 6, 2009

So Goes the Nation

There might be some hope. The generation that gets its news from comedy shows was treated to a satire of corporatism!


Hat-tip: Professor Mankiw

Posted by John Kranz at 7:55 PM | Comments (0)

April 2, 2009

Media Health a Leading Indicator of Societal Change?

It probably has not escaped anyone's attention that traditional liberal media outlets are falling off the financial cliff while more centrist or right-leaning sources are doing OK (WSJ, Fox News, Limbaugh). This link has an excellent summary of the situation.

At first, The Refugee speculated that this was because more conservative readers understand the need for businesses to make money and are therefore more likely to pony up for a subscription. Liberals have a greater penchant for an entitlement mentality and therefore expect things for free or to be provided by the government. But, he concluded that this was an unfair, snarky little remark. (Go ahead, LatteSipper, let him have it!)

However, could it be that the health of media outlets is a leading indicator of societal change? In the stock market, transportation activity is a leading indicator of economic activity, whereas employment is a lagging indicator. The Refugee is no media scholar, but the current long-term drift to the left seems to have started in the 20's and 30's when socialism/communism came into vogue and the media started moving left.

In the above-referenced piece, only 20% of Americans believe "all or most" media reporting. Perhaps the current trend in the media indicates that national mentality is moving back more toward the middle. Wishful thinking by The Refugee? Hopefully not.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 4:41 PM | Comments (0)

March 31, 2009

Quote of the Day

So let's recap - Krugman was wrong about the previous strategy having been "always bonds", wrong about the switch to equities being executed at the market peak, and wrong about possible losses amounting to "hundreds of billions" of dollars, we presume. He also misspelled "Guaranty". But he did find an opportunity to explain how stupid conservatives are. Mission Accomplished! -- Tom Maguire
Posted by John Kranz at 7:42 PM | Comments (0)

March 25, 2009

Newspapers: Who Cares?

If your face is too ugly to be on TV or your voice too gravelly to be on the radio, you can still write copy for them or the teleprompter (hell, be a Presidential speechwriter even!)... because those media models seem to be surviving.

Reuters:

With many U.S. newspapers struggling to survive, a Democratic senator on Tuesday introduced a bill to help them by allowing newspaper companies to restructure as nonprofits with a variety of tax breaks.

"This may not be the optimal choice for some major newspapers or corporate media chains but it should be an option for many newspapers that are struggling to stay afloat," said Senator Benjamin Cardin.

A Cardin spokesman said the bill had yet to attract any co-sponsors, but had sparked plenty of interest within the media, which has seen plunging revenues and many journalist layoffs.

Cardin's Newspaper Revitalization Act would allow newspapers to operate as nonprofits for educational purposes under the U.S. tax code, giving them a similar status to public broadcasting companies.

Under this arrangement, newspapers would still be free to report on all issues, including political campaigns. But they would be prohibited from making political endorsements.


So a newspaper's liberal bias becomes more important in the articles.

Does anyone else remember the Candlestickmaker and Whale Oil Distillers Revitalization Acts of 1880 and 1894? The Telegrapher and Railroad Brakeman's Relief Act of 1902?

Yeah, I don't either.

Posted by AlexC at 1:57 AM | Comments (3)
But T. Greer thinks:

Zen Pundit (and commentators) called it first.

Posted by: T. Greer at March 25, 2009 7:06 PM
But jk thinks:

Taranto had a nice riff as well.

Posted by: jk at March 25, 2009 7:55 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Erm, I've only been using the example of horses and buggies for...47 months now.

Let Amtrak Die

"A century ago, would we have subsidized horse carriage manufacturers, or whip-makers, because they couldn't compete against the new automobiles?"

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at March 26, 2009 11:04 PM

March 24, 2009

Quote of the Day

Commenter V the K (don't know, don't want to know) at GayPatriot on the paucity of MSM coverage for Tea Party protests:

You know what would be a fun experiment though? Call the media and let them know thereís going to be a big protest against the War in Afghanistan, or against ďBig Oil,Ē or against ďfat cat executives.Ē Something like that. Then, when the media shows up, all the protesters drop their left-wing cause signs and pick-up their tea party signs.


Posted by John Kranz at 4:06 PM | Comments (0)

March 10, 2009

Freeman Pulls Appointment

I don't like to overestimate the influence of bloggers and new media -- but I think they can claim credit for this:

Director of National Intelligence Dennis C. Blair announced today that Ambassador Charles W. Freeman Jr. has requested that his selection to be Chairman of the National Intelligence Council not proceed. Director Blair accepted Ambassador Freemanís decision with regret.

Obama's Jew-hatin' pick will not head the NIC. Conventional MSM took no interest in this story at all. I think it was kept alive by blogs, (and perhaps talk radio). Bret Stephens had a devastating piece in the WSJ Ed Page today that Chinese dissidents disapproved the pick and can hardly be considered part of the all powerful Israeli lobby.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:56 PM | Comments (0)

March 3, 2009

Reason 147 not to read the articles

The good folks at Playboy have the scoop of the century. Rick Santelli? The Tea party? Protests? All a big plot -- a shadowy, nefarious conspiracy to take down The One:

As you read this, Big Business is pouring tens of millions of dollars into their media machines in order to destroy just about every economic campaign promise Obama has made, as reported recently in the Wall Street Journal. At stake isn't the little guy's fight against big government, as Santelli and his bot-supporters claim, but rather the "upper 2 percent"'s war to protect their wealth from the Obama Adminstration's economic plans. When this Santelli "grassroots" campaign is peeled open, what's revealed is a glimpse of what is ahead and what is bound to be a hallmark of his presidency.

Don't rush out to buy the next issue so you can drown yourself in all this lascivious content. It seems they have airbrushed the story out of existence. But Megan McArdle had a copy open in a browser...

Hat-tip: Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 12:47 PM | Comments (1)
But Keith thinks:

I read a similar story yesterday at Michelle's:

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/03/02/the-tea-party-bashers-clueless-bitter-and-wrapped-in-tinfoil/

The efforts to discredit the Tea Party movement is in full force. I think what we're seeing is efforts to turn a lie into accepted truth by frequent repetition.

Posted by: Keith at March 3, 2009 1:06 PM

February 26, 2009

Schadenfreude Free zone

I love Journalism qua Journalism, and I was conditioned to appreciate growing up in a two-paper town. The Post and Rocky collapsed ownership a few years ago and became less competitive with each other. Yet it was still a two paper town.

On the other hand, Mister Truman, I'm a new media guy and think the dailies have dug their own grave with lousy, biased content and pursuit of a broken business model. When a paper closes down in San Francisco, Honolulu, or Ash Debula I say "Viva Schumpeter, the lying, lazy weasels reaped what they sowed!"

In the end, I'll admit to being saddened by the news that Denver's worse paper is shutting down after 150 years (Colorado has only been a State since 1876).

The Rocky Mountain News publishes its last paper tomorrow.

Rich Boehne, chief executive officer of Rocky-owner Scripps, broke the news to the staff at noon today, ending nearly three months of speculation over the paper's future.

"People are in grief," Editor John Temple said at a news conference later.


Posted by John Kranz at 5:53 PM | Comments (3)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

The Refugee will admit some sadness at the demise of the The Rocky. With better-balanced news coverage and a more reasoned editorial board (Vincent Carroll), The Rocky is far preferable to The Post. Moreover, The Refugee still likes to spread out the paper in front of his breakfast and peruse the news before starting the day in earnest. It's an ambiance that you just can't get with a computer screen.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 27, 2009 10:32 AM
But jk thinks:

I have not subscribed to either of the dailies in a decade. I thought I remembered The Post being less biased -- holy cow, they employ David Harsanyi!

For spreading out, you can't beat a broadsheet. I read the Wall Street Journal online but always love to grab a paper copy in the airport or Starbucks.

On the serous side. I do love to whack the lazy, biased, groupthink MSM but I think the business model is so flawed and the competition is so severe that I cannot imagine Denver supporting two local papers. It's more about Joseph Schumpeter than Bernie Goldberg -- is it not?


Posted by: jk at February 27, 2009 11:53 AM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Yes, the print media has never figured out how to give away content and make money, if you catch my drift. Craig's List has probably done more to kill newspapers than anything else, however. In The Rocky's case, they had a $22 million news room and a $22 million loss last year... hmmm.

On the Schadenfreude side, it's nice to see the San Francisco Chronicle take a digger, perhaps soon to joined by the LA Times.

As good as Harsanyi is, he is a token at The Post.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at February 27, 2009 2:27 PM

February 20, 2009

Corrections

ALG News reported, mistakenly, that the new CIA Director, Leon Panetta, had a daughter that was associated with the dictators of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, and of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega. In fact, as reported by Accuracy in Media, Mr. Panetta has no daughter. ALG News would like to apologize to Mr. Panetta for erroneously reporting this in error. -- Americans for Limited Government
And:
John Gibson Did Not Compare Eric Holder To Monkey With Bright Blue Scrotum -- HuffPo
Any more questions?


Posted by John Kranz at 7:29 PM | Comments (0)

February 13, 2009

"Our Margaret"

SugarChuck and I used to exchange emails about "Our Margaret," by which we meant Peggy Noonan, years ago when I only feared that she was going off the deep end. I've said it 100 times, but her book on Reagan "What I Saw at the Revolution" is one of the greatest political books ever. Her lyrical columns on post-9-11 America still stand strong. Her writings on Catholicism, the Pope, and the miracle of Guadalupe got me as close to "my childhood's faith" as anything.

But she has become the Wall Street Journal's Helen Thomas! I usually avoid her column entirely, but the new Murdoch-approved format makes it more difficult. Today, she opens with the savage, atavistic elitism which first alerted me to a problem:

A moment last Monday, just after noon, in Manhattan. It's slightly overcast, not cold, a good day for walking. I'm in the 90s on Fifth heading south, enjoying the broad avenue, the trees, the wide cobblestone walkway that rings Central Park. Suddenly I realize: Something's odd here. Something's strange. It's quiet. I can hear each car go by. The traffic's not an indistinct roar. The sidewalks aren't full, as they normally are. It's like a holiday, but it's not, it's the middle of a business day in February. I thought back to two weeks before when a friend and I zoomed down Park Avenue at evening rush hour in what should have been bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Now admit it -- if you heard such Upper-West-Side blather on NPR you'd grab for a barf bag. Decades-old Reagan cred does not make it okay. Then, the heart of the story is how that horrible woman who had all those damned kids!
What we fear we're making more of these days is Nadya Suleman. The dizzy, selfish, self-dramatizing 33-year-old mother who had six small children and then a week ago eight more because, well, she always wanted a big family. "Suley" doubletalks with the best of them, she doubletalks with profound ease. She is like Blago without the charm. She had needs and took proactive steps to meet them, and those who don't approve are limited, which must be sad for them. She leaves anchorwomen slack-jawed: How do you rough up a woman who's still lactating? She seems aware of their predicament.

I have not encountered "The Octomom." I do find it very easy to avoid things like that (are we into blue-horse territory here?) but Noonan's revulsions speaks more about Noonan than Suleman. Like Governor Palin, this is a woman who is on television and yet is completely unknown at fasionable cocktail parties. Quel Horror!

Taking about the same amount of virtual newsprint, as usual on Fridays, is Kim Strassel's smart, well reasoned piece on the politics of the stimulus. It should embarrass somebody to publish them side by side.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:47 PM | Comments (2)
But nanobrewer thinks:


I've felt the same for several years now, nearly to a T. Her past columns were tremendous and moving, esp. right after the passing of Reagan. Her post 9-11 posts were chilling and bracing with barely-contained rage and resolve.

I've just stopped reading her. I hope she improves, or she'll be consigned to a bad-poetry-on-NPR-weekends gig. I'm getting the feeling at times from Mr. Will as well, and generally don't read him either. Young guns, as Hugh Hewitt suggests, is where we need to spend our time and effort.

I don't know if you guys are young or not, but you make me feel like I am!

Posted by: nanobrewer at February 13, 2009 4:44 PM
But jk thinks:

Yup. Mister Will is many furlongs down that road as well.

Thanks for the kind words and welcome to ThreeSources (love the handle!) I think I am the oldest around here and I graduated high school when Jimmy Carter was President.

Posted by: jk at February 13, 2009 4:57 PM

February 9, 2009

Editing

Russ Roberts (who I recently discovered is a former professor and friend of a friend) takes an AP story about the staggering economic depredation recent job losses. and edits it, as a real editor would if they had any left at the Associated Press.

Too good to excerpt -- read the whole thing.

Hat-tip: Everyday Economist

Posted by John Kranz at 6:40 PM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Already been there; check out my own editing.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 11, 2009 11:29 AM

January 26, 2009

Pretty Fair AP Coverage

Taranto gives the folks at AP some pretty good and well deserved whacks today for Pliability Journalism.

But I have to say, this lead is clear and accurate:

WASHINGTON Ė President Barack Obama wants automakers to make greener cars at a time when General Motors and Chrysler are hanging by the thread of a massive government loan and auto sales have plummeted to their lowest levels in more than two decades.

Obama's plans could bring smaller cars, more hybrids and advanced fuel-saving technologies to showrooms, but car shoppers will probably pay more upfront because the new rules are expected to cost the hamstrung industry billions of dollars.


Tell it like it is! I thought I was reading the Washington Times...

Posted by John Kranz at 6:49 PM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Dayum. These two reporters won't last long if they keep writing like that...

The new first commandment of journalism, after all, is "Thou shalt not question The One."

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at January 27, 2009 4:01 PM

January 24, 2009

Greener Pastures

For ThreeSources friend Howard "Extreme" Mortman. He'll be missed but I congratulate him for his new gig: C-SPAN. Director of Communications.

Big time, Bill, big time.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:41 PM | Comments (2)
But Howard Mortman thinks:

very, very kind.
thank you!
let's stay in touch.
-- Howard

Posted by: Howard Mortman at January 24, 2009 6:32 PM
But AlexC thinks:

Amen!

Posted by: AlexC at January 25, 2009 11:32 AM

January 9, 2009

Sad News

Attila @ PillageIdiot has decided to hang up his blogging shoes. He goes out with the self-deprecating humor I enjoyed:

I've enjoyed writing at Pillage Idiot, but four years is a long time, and I feel I've run out of things to say. Some might suggest I ran out of things to say over four years ago. Maybe they're right.

In addition, writing under a pseudonym turns out to be more stressful than I'd anticipated. It's sort of like being a spy, but without the glamor, without the money, and without the treason. On the other hand, if I'd used my real name, people would have known I was a total idiot instead of merely suspecting it.


He'll be missed!


Posted by John Kranz at 5:50 PM | Comments (0)

January 8, 2009

Media Elites vs Regular Joes

Always good to see the media elites lash out when regular joes (no pun intended) try to do reporting.

"How dare he! We went to journalism school!"

Joe the Plumber, whose pronouncements during the campaign established him as the most influential political pundit since Bart Simpson, plans to save journalism - from itself. London's Guardian says Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher is "dropping his unlicensed plunger and picking up a reporter's notebook" to cover the latest eruption of violence in the Gaza strip for conservative Web site pjtv.com. Joe the War Correspondent, who will immerse himself in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for 10 whole days, promises to report "without a politically correct filter." Joe, who became a mascot for John McCain's campaign when he challenged Barack Obama's economic plan, tells NBC News he will try to explain Israel's reason for the offensive against Hamas. "I get to go over there and let their 'average Joes' share their story, what they think, how they feel, especially with world opinion," he said. "It's very tragic," he said of the rising death toll. "But at the same time what are the Israeli people supposed to do?"

Thanks for the reporting Tirdad Derakhshani.

Paragraphs and carriage returns.

We could have used two or three of them.

He must have missed that day in J-school.

Posted by AlexC at 4:55 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

I see from the same link that:

Jennifer Garner and husband Ben Affleck, both 36, welcomed their second daughter on Tuesday, People mag reports. The baby, who was born in Los Angeles at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, has yet to be identified to the masses by name.

These are professional journalists, kids, don't try this at home!

Posted by: jk at January 8, 2009 6:13 PM

January 5, 2009

In the lap of Big Corn

Instapundit links to a Popular Science post discussing "If You Dropped a Corn Kernel From Space, Would it Pop During Re-Entry?" I love that the page has banner ads for popcorn from shopping.com.

I'm sensing a cabal...Professor Reynolds, Senator Grassley, some guy named Orville....

Posted by John Kranz at 6:17 PM | Comments (0)

December 23, 2008

You Read Blogs Too Much

If you get this, you need a life: Jeffry Goldberg in his Atlantic blog:

This is James Bennet, editor of The Atlantic.

Most readers know that the views expressed on Jeffrey's blog are his own and don't always reflect the views of The Atlantic. Such is the case with regard to Jeffrey's comments on the relative merits of hummus and baba ghanoush. Our institution has partnered with the makers of baba ganoush, as well as tabouleh and fattoush, on a number of projects, and we have a great deal of respect for their excellent work product, including the entire spectrum of Middle Eastern salads and paste-like foods, with the exception of halvah. We at The Atlantic do not take sides in the ongoing dispute between partisans of hummus and partisans of baba ghanoush. These food products are key leaders in the Middle East food products industry, and we look forward to eating them in the future.


Yes, I read blogs too much, I think it is hilarious. Backstory.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:09 PM | Comments (0)

December 20, 2008

Post-Partisan

The headline caught my eye: Obama signals new approach to science Popperian epistemology is out? Huh, what?

It turns out that President-elect Obama is -- well, let the AP tell you:

WASHINGTON ó President-elect Barack Obama today named a Harvard physicist and a marine biologist to science posts, signaling a change from Bush administration policies on global warming that were criticized for putting politics over science.

Both John Holdren and Jane Lubchenco are leading experts on climate change who have advocated forceful government response.


The Bush science people were political, but Holdren is a scientist!
Colleagues say the post is well-suited for Holdren, who at Harvard went from battling the spread of nuclear weapons to tackling the threat of global warming. He's an award-laden scientist comfortable in many different fields.

The hopelessly-pro-Bush partisans at the New York Times, however, may not be so keen on the pick. John Tierney asks "Does being spectacularly wrong about a major issue in your field of expertise hurt your chances of becoming the presidential science advisor? Apparently not..." Tierney mentions -- and the AP and Denver Post omit -- Holdren's experience in scare-mongering and junk science:
Dr. Holdren, now a physicist at Harvard, was one of the experts in natural resources whom Paul Ehrlich enlisted in his famous bet against the economist Julian Simon during the ďenergy crisisĒ of the 1980s. Dr. Simon, who disagreed with environmentalistsí predictions of a new ďage of scarcityĒ of natural resources, offered to bet that any natural resource would be cheaper at any date in the future. Dr. Ehrlich accepted the challenge and asked Dr. Holdren, then the co-director of the graduate program in energy and resources at the University of California, Berkeley, and another Berkeley professor, John Harte, for help in choosing which resources would become scarce.

In 1980 Dr. Holdren helped select five metals ó chrome, copper, nickel, tin and tungsten ó and joined Dr. Ehrlich and Dr. Harte in betting $1,000 that those metals would be more expensive ten years later. They turned out to be wrong on all five metals, and had to pay up when the bet came due in 1990.


This is great because I love to bring up Paul Ehrlich to fervent DAWG believers and you know I love a good segue. Ehrlich's catastrophic and catastrophically wrong predictions seem comical today. It's not about the strike price of Tungsten. Ehrlich thought we'd all starve to death in the 1990s.

It seems fitting and proper that an Ehrlich associate would be promoted to science advisor in an Obama Administration (where's that in the Constitution again?) but absurd that we have to read about his appointment as a triumph of science over politics.

Read the whole Tierney piece just as much as you can stand of Hope Yen's AP story.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:47 PM | Comments (0)

December 18, 2008

Lexus, Schmexus...

At at loss for what to get the Spousal Unit for Christmas, The Refugee chanced upon a small ad in the WSJ from Avantair. "Give the gift of travel," it says. Fifteen hours of private jet travel for just $72,750 all with the convenience of a card. Sure. He'll slip one of those little beauties into The Mrs.' stocking. Won't she be surprised.

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 6:06 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

If Mrs. Refugee gets 15, I suppose the blog brothers will be settling for the 10 cards this year. Sigh, I guess we are in a recession.

Posted by: jk at December 18, 2008 6:18 PM

December 17, 2008

Bush's Fault

I read about Lou Dobbs all the time, but I never watch him. Here, the doyen of domestic border security calls for the impeachment of President Bush -- over tomatoes!

This earns the populist a #4 in The Media's Top 10 Worst Economic Myths of 2008. Great stuff! Hat-tip: Samizdat Jonathan Pearce

Posted by John Kranz at 5:41 PM | Comments (2)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Apparently the guy really is a dumb as they say. Of the millions of pounds of fruits and vegetables that come over the border, he wants to impeach Bush for not finding the few pounds tainted with a microscopic organism. The Refugee suspects, however, that Dobbs views Mexican-grown tomatoes in the same light as illegal aliens.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at December 17, 2008 7:25 PM
But jk thinks:

Was it Federalist #10 or #69 where the Executive was charged with making sure nobody ever eats anything bad? I get all those mixed up.

With the new guard, I suppose we'll have the department of bad cheese stationed in our homes to sniff the milk and check the sell-by dates.

Posted by: jk at December 18, 2008 12:05 PM

December 16, 2008

The Telegraph Imitates ThreeSources!

You wait long enough, you see everything. Toby Harnden gives our President props for his handling of flying footwear:

Barack Obama may be the new Mr Cool on the block but you have to give President George W. Bush his due for a supremely self-composed and dignified reaction to the Baghdad shoe thrower.

Not only did he duck two fast-moving and pretty well aimed pieces of footwear but he discreetly waved away his lead Secret Service agent, who was ready to bundle him out of the room. Bush then quipped: "That was a size 10 shoe he threw at me you may want to know."


Then, Harnden picks up a couple of points I thought would be limited to the wingnuts at ThreeSources:
No doubt much will be made of the irony of the Iraqis hitting the downed statue of Saddam Hussein with their shoes when Baghdad fell to US forces on April 9th 2003 and then, five years and eight months later, shoes being hurled at Bush.

But ask yourself this question: How would al-Zaidi have fared if he'd hurled a pair of shoes at Saddam?


Yeah, it's the Telegraph, but we're still talking British press. Then, the website offers the video of Shoeless Joe al-Zaidi juxtaposed with the American military reception I posted.

Merciful Zeus! Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 1:12 PM | Comments (0)

December 10, 2008

The American Magazine

I have bored ThreeSourcers for a few years with suggestions to subscribe to and read The American Magazine (formerly The American Enterprise). I laughed when Johngalt and Dagny talked it up a few months ago.

But it pains me to say that editorial quality is slipping. Nick Schultz took over as editor several issues ago, and I have a world of respect for Schultz from his TCS days. But the last issue disappointed and today's featured email story shows why.

Desmond Lachman states "Now is the time for a bold new economic strategy. Let's hope that Team Obama delivers one." Lachman is a Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, suggesting he has an IQ way above mine and a more serious education. (To be fair, there are some better educated squirrels, but you see what I'm saying.)

Turning to the article to see Lachman's "bold new economic strategy" one finds it missing. He offers a three point strategy for new SecTreas Timothy Geithner. The first I disagree with:

First, there must be a large fiscal stimulus package, worth at least $500 billion, designed to boost consumer spending and aggregate demand in the short run.

I guess we're all Keynesians now, President Nixon. This is the AEI? The second and third points are not worked out in much detail. Or any:
Second, the strategy must include clear prescriptions for unclogging the credit markets and rejuvenating bank lending. This will entail a wholesale rethinking of the Treasury Department's Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP), which has failed to deliver its intended results.

Third, the strategy must include a plan to curb the sharp decline in U.S. home prices that continues to erode consumer confidence and compound bank losses.


After we throw half a trillion out of the sky, we'll have to rethink TARP and fix falling home prices. Are you getting this down, Mr. Geithner?

I don't mean to beat up on Lachman. But this briefly awesome magazine now reads like a sequence of blog posts. This story I complain about is 640 words counting the pull-out quote twice. I read blogs all the time and look forward to a magazine to get a little more depth on a story. The subject certainly deserves it.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:18 PM | Comments (0)

November 21, 2008

Post Cable

I'll put this under "Media" but it may belong more to technology (or personal economics).

My introductory rate on cable-TV expires next week (have I really lived here six months?) and I could not find a replacement at a price point that I like. So it is goodbye to Larry Kudlow. I ordered an antenna on Amazon and I intend to live on broadcast, internet and purchased programming.

I debated getting the AppleTV box when I moved but found the TiVo handles that task and plays well with cable. So I'm keeping the TiVo, which gets me access to YouTube and a bunch of Internet video (The Onion, NYTimes Politics, &c), plus paid downloads from Amazon Video-on-Demand. I figure I can buy a lot for the $65 I won't be sending Comcast.

I will miss Kudlow, big time. I'll haunt CNBC.com for clips and will of course read his blogs. There are a couple shows on FOXNews that I like but I don't think I'll die without The Beltway Boys. The Journal Editorial Report will be missed, but they put a lot of video online.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb suggests in The Black Swan that we should read less newspapers and more books. My cable bill will buy a new book each week and more time to read.

Unless the Avs make a run for the Cup this year, I think I am cool. You can place your bets on how many Kudlowless days jk can take.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:15 PM | Comments (0)

November 20, 2008

Welcome to the Blogroll

I've been enjoying the thoughtful comments from Keith and am adding his blog, STAND, to the blogroll. I also encourage ThreeSourcers to check out the blog of Alhambra Bible Fellowship, where he is Pastor (that's right, guys, let's show a little decorum around here...)

Posted by John Kranz at 2:38 PM | Comments (2)
But Keith thinks:

I'm humbled, and thank you - but don't feel obliged to worry about the decorum on account of me. The ambience here is great just the way it is, and I wouldn't spoil it for the world. Besides, I also frequent some pretty harsh blogs; I'm not as fragile as the job title conveys.

Besides, you've read my comments here - you've let me shoot my mouth off without banning me...

Posted by: Keith at November 20, 2008 4:14 PM
But jk thinks:

Fear not. I'm pretty sure there won't be any more decorous behavior around here than usual. Our heroes are the Flyers fans who boo Santa Claus.

Posted by: jk at November 20, 2008 4:36 PM

November 19, 2008

The Doctor is In

Professor Mankiw links to a site that analyzes your blog and you. Here's what they think of ThreeSources:

INTP - The Thinkers

The logical and analytical type. They are especialy [sic] attuned to difficult creative and intellectual challenges and always look for something more complex to dig into. They are great at finding subtle connections between things and imagine far-reaching implications.

They enjoy working with complex things using a lot of concepts and imaginative models of reality. Since they are not very good at seeing and understanding the needs of other people, they might come across as arrogant, impatient and insensitive to people that need some time to understand what they are talking about.


We really only seem arrogant, impatient and insensitive to morons who don't understand what we are talking about. I ain't too worried.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:50 PM | Comments (3)
But Keith thinks:

Great minds obviously think alike - both mine, stand.townhall.com and alhbible.wordpress.com, also score as INTP (though the graphical charts come out very different.

I'm going to waste the whole night testing sites I read...

Posted by: Keith at November 19, 2008 7:36 PM
But jk thinks:

It seems pretty interesting. My first thought was that it's like Astrology: tell people how swell they are and they think "wow, this really works." I ran it on my lovely wife's blog and it seemed 3 for 3 (Mankiw, 3Sources, tatergosum).

I'm not sure about the next two but I don't know the people that well. Of course, we Geminis are pretty naturally skeptical...

Posted by: jk at November 20, 2008 11:10 AM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

I'm not so sure the analysis of my Eidelblog is completely right. It's true a lot of my posts can be economically "theoretical" and "abstract," but I apply principles to the real world all the time.

INTJ - The Scientists

The long-range thinking and individualistic type. They are especially good at looking at almost anything and figuring out a way of improving it - often with a highly creative and imaginative touch. They are intellectually curious and daring, but might be pshysically hesitant to try new things.

The Scientists enjoy theoretical work that allows them to use their strong minds and bold creativity. Since they tend to be so abstract and theoretical in their communication they often have a problem communcating their visions to other people and need to learn patience and use conrete examples. Since they are extremly good at concentrating they often have no trouble working alone.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at November 20, 2008 1:57 PM

November 14, 2008

Now They Tell Us!

Reason's Brian Dougherty is creeped out by Obama worship:

I've watched with growing distress this past week as many interesting cultural iconoclasts I admire for various reasons who can usually be counted on to be aware and skeptical of government power to at least some degree, from John Perry Barlow to Adam Parfrey to Oliver Stone, have swooned over the mighty Obama and his world-changing powers (my misery over this is maximized by many friends and acquaintances who are not public figures as well).

Being surrounded by a creepy-happy adoring Cult of the Great Leader makes me...uncomfortable, to be sure. Via Will Wilkinson comes a particularly awful example of Obamania, in which we are advised via Beatles lyrics both of our responsibility to not let Obama down, and also showered with the adoring love we must express for him.


I hear you, bud. What really grabbed were several reader comments. The second:
Now they tell us! I vaguely seem to recall Reason pretty much pulling out all the stops to oppose McCain and support BHO.

What Reason could have done - but did not - is illustrated in the graphic here in a post relating to Weigel's thread of today.


Number three:
Honestly, the writers and editors of Reason should have seen this coming. Do any of them seriously believe a cult of personality of this sort would have grown up around McCain?

It was OBVIOUS this would happen. There's more to come too.

I feel sorry for everyone except those who work for Reason. Reason is guilty of criminal negligence with regard to BO.


I was disgusted by about every issue of Reason through the election. I enjoyed the latest issue last weekend now that the election is over. I guess I don't hold a grudge. But the commenters are 100% spot on. Matt Welch has written an anti-McCain book, Rep. Bob Barr was targeting GOP voters, and the LP expressly voiced intent to tip the election to Senator Obama to demonstrate their power.

There was the occasional soft criticism of Senator O, but this was juxtaposed with feature-length jeremiads against the "Mythy Maverick." I can see MSNBC being in the tank for Obama -- they believe in government control -- but I was astounded that Reason would do so much to elect a (sorry, Latte and Heretic, I need a wide brush here) socialist.

Yesterday they were upset that his chief of staff is a drug warrior. Now, they have just discovered the cult of personality? Reason remains a great read, but its editorial staff, like the LP, is not to be taken seriously.

Libertario Delenda Est! (If anybody can help me with the grammar -- how many Romans?-- before I make that a category, I'd appreciate it)

Posted by John Kranz at 12:26 PM | Comments (1)
But T. Greer thinks:

I agree completely. While I have never been Reason's biggest fan, they lost me utterly this year. Underlying their support for Obama was this quaint idea that the GOP needed to be "punished" for straying too far off the free market track. Sadly, this is utter nonsense- a quick history review shows us that this has never worked. Heck, you need only to look at the most recent electoral crashes to see what happens to the losing party. Following the Reagan glory days, we find the Democratic presidential candidate stating he was for small government. Following the Republican washout of '06, the Republicans vote for John McCain, the most moderate of all the GOP primary candidates.

Seriously, what are those folks over at Reason thinking? Parties look at the results of an election in order to understand what the public wants from them. When it comes time to write planks in 2012, they will be paying one hell of a lot more attention to America's new progressive majority than they will to the few thousand libertarians who voted against them in order to make a point.

~T. Greer, reading tea leaves

Posted by: T. Greer at November 14, 2008 5:04 PM

November 13, 2008

Mr. Eisenstadt, Please Call Your Office...

It would appear that all of the "leaks" regarding the McCain campaign were part of very clever hoax. It is interesting to note how quickly the MSM pounced on negative reports about Palin, even though they seemed unbelievable. But the right, including your Humble Refugee, are not without blame either, as we just as quickly believed that someone could be out there saying such things from the McCain camp.

Beyond the obvious lesson of "fact checking," this episode teaches how damaging a false story can be and why the MSM watchdog needs a watchdog of its own.

Unless of course, this is a hoax...

Posted by Boulder Refugee at 10:57 AM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Wow! I loved this:

An MSNBC spokesman, Jeremy Gaines, explained the network’s misstep by saying someone in the newsroom received the Palin item in an e-mail message from a colleague and assumed it had been checked out. "It had not been vetted," he said. "It should not have made air."

I'm sure they would have rushed just as quickly to air a negative comment abound Senator Obama. News is a fast business. 24 by frickken' 7.

Posted by: jk at November 13, 2008 11:55 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Is that for real? "Someone received an email from a colleague" is about as reliable as "I read it on the internet." Are these people journalists or "just" bloggers?

And no mention that "someone in the newsroom" has been fired? WTF? Are these guys UAW members or something?

Posted by: johngalt at November 13, 2008 2:10 PM

November 9, 2008

Okay, we sucked!

Wow, I saw a little of this on the FOXNews crawl, and now Insty links. The WaPo Ombudsperson, Deborah Howell:

The Post provided a lot of good campaign coverage, but readers have been consistently critical of the lack of probing issues coverage and what they saw as a tilt toward Democrat Barack Obama. My surveys, which ended on Election Day, show that they are right on both counts.

Whole thing, trust me.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:32 PM | Comments (0)

November 5, 2008

Good Vibes Have a Short Shelf Life

The Boston Herald reports on bitter clingers for McCain who just can't accept this brave new world:

Some stood with arms crossed, anger etched on their faces. Others expressed disappointment, even fear. Still others wiped away tears and grumbled when John McCain congratulated his opponent, America's first black president, for making history.

Wow! Crossed arms! Those Republicans are really really mean. As we were promised riots in the event of a McCain upset, I'm thinking I can handle some -- even severely -- crossed arms.

I will say that McCain's concession speech was perfect and classy. He was stunned when the crowd booed President-elect Obama. I have my gripes with Senator McCain as a candidate and as a Senator. But he proved himself to be a classy guy and a true patriot.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:48 AM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

"Still others wiped away tears and grumbled when John McCain congratulated his opponent, America's first black president, for making history."

Once more, Obama's supporters, especially the mainstream media, always have to bring race into it. What a spin to imply "racism" on the part of McCain's grumbling supporters!

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at November 5, 2008 4:55 PM

October 31, 2008

Give Light

I can't stop wondering how the Obama-Khalidi videotape situation would be handled if it were in the possession of a Scripps newspaper rather than the Los Angeles Times. Growing up in Denver I became accustomed to the phrase "Give light and the people will find their own way" printed in the masthead of the Rocky Mountain News. Naive youth that I was, I believed for many years that ALL newspapers adhered to this ideal. Silly me.

So today I sought out the LA Times motto. I couldn't easily find it on the paper's own website but here I found it quoted as, "Largest circulation in the west." Not quite as inspirational is it?

In this jaded era I found it refreshing to read the story of the Scripps motto:

Words are so often turned to such shabby or trivial ends that it's sometimes worth celebrating those with substance and a pedigree. Consider the Scripps motto: Give light and the people will find their own way.

Those words first appeared on a newspaper masthead June 22, 1922. They were placed there by a New Mexico editor who refused to damp down truth even when the mighty threatened to smash the lantern.

As the story goes, Carl Magee first attacked U.S. Sen. Albert B. Fall in his Albuquerque newspaper over the Fall machine's misuse of water rights to wrest the votes of New Mexico farmers. When Fall became interior secretary, he leaned on banks to call-in their loans to the paper.

(...)

"Scripps saw a man in New Mexico making a tough fight for the people of New Mexico, for principles in which the organization believed. They asked him orally about terms. He wrote a letter and Roy Howard scribbled 'OK.' Then they wired money to his paper. Sounds suspiciously like idealism."

(...)

Years later, Dante scholar H.D. Austin from the University of Southern California attributed the line to the following passage in Purgatory XXII67-69: "Facesti come quei che va di notte che porta il lume dietro e.a se non giova ma dopo se fa le persone dott." A literal translation of this would read: "Thou didst as one who passing through the night bears a light behind, that profits not himself but makes those who follow wise."

It is speculated that Carl Magee had read and liked the passage but might have forgotten its source, author and exact wording. Or, being an editor, he may have streamlined it for his editorial purposes.

In any event, the "give light" motto served Carl Magee's purposes and Ė more than 80 years later Ė continues to do so today for The E. W. Scripps Company.

So the natural question to the LA Times is, "What don't you want the people to see?"

Posted by JohnGalt at 12:15 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

I stopped reading the Rocky awhile back. I see web articles and my relatives mail me clippings. Do you think they would hold to their motto?

Even in my 20s, working in media and spending a lot of time in Newspapers (as a flack) I was always taken by the inscription over the door of the Denver Post's old downtown building:

O Justice, when expelled from other habitations, make this thy dwelling place.

Sadly, I have little hope that either paper would live up its lofty ideals.

Posted by: jk at October 31, 2008 2:15 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Well, that one from the Post depends on one's definition of "justice." Barry Obama claims to fight for "social and economic justice" by "spreading the wealth around."

Conversely, the Scripps motto is more like the old Fox News "you decide" slogan. All they have to do is "give light."

Posted by: johngalt at November 1, 2008 11:50 PM

October 24, 2008

Ees Not My Yob!

Megan McArdle, my favorite libertarian Democratic Obama supporter, is not in the tank.

I was at a friend's birthday party last night, and another financial/political journalist and I were marvelling at the way that Obama has been able to get away with complaining about deregulation while sharing a ticket with The Man from MBNA. Why haven't journalists pointed this out? I asked. He shrugged, and then said it's really McCain's fault--it's his job to make that case, and he hasn't.

That would be funny were it not so sad. The Tanning Bed Media (don't say I ain't hip to the memes) can send 30 reporters to Alaska to see if Bristol's ex-boyfriend's mother-in-law's cousin's landlord once swore in front of a child, but it's somehow Senator McCain's job to point out the startling differences between his opponent's rhetoric and actions.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:23 PM | Comments (3)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

No. There is still no such thing as a "libertarian Democratic Obama supporter," no matter how much McArdle screams it at the top of her lungs.

Now I know for sure what my friend Billy Beck has said all this time: she's an idiot. Especially now, with Obama having unveiled his "soak the rich" tax plan that actually means "soak the PRODUCERS and INVESTORS," no one, NO ONE who claims to believe in individual liberty could possibly think Obama will be AT ALL good for this country, let alone vote for that socialist.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at October 24, 2008 1:14 PM
But jk thinks:

I find it hard to get my head wrapped around it as well, Perry. But I will defend Ms. McArdle as filling a necessary position in my new world order. I posted awhile back that "The Libertarian Party Must Be Destroyed." (Why did I not think to title it Libertaro Delenda Est" I was snoozing.)

I want big-L libs to return to the major parties. I find it more natural to be a little-l-big-R, but I cede that McArdle (or somebody else, I am unfairly putting words in her mouth) could feel that abortion rights, civil liberties, church-state separation, gay rights and the like are more important than economic destruct--I mean issues. Those people should join the Democrats and push them to embrace market principles as I push the GOP to support liberalized immigration, gay rights and back off the drug war.

Posted by: jk at October 24, 2008 2:22 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Absurd. Like before, as I recall, you're enumerating perfectly liberal issues, but not libertarian. Libertarianism is not just about social freedom. If there's no economic libertarianism, it isn't libertarianism at all.

Both parties are so committed to raping the taxpayer and redistributing the wealth that there's no way true libertarians can rely on either.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at October 25, 2008 11:54 AM

October 22, 2008

American Journalism Dismantled by ... a Democrat

If John McCain is going to win this election it will be with the help of great Americans like Orson Scott Card. A science fiction writer (who's work dagny likes) he's also a Democrat and a newspaper columnist published in North Carolina. And according to Rush Limbaugh (where I first heard this) he's far enough left to be pro gun control. And yet, he takes American newspapers apart:

I remember reading All the President's Men and thinking: That's journalism. You do what it takes to get the truth and you lay it before the public, because the public has a right to know.

This housing crisis didn't come out of nowhere. It was not a vague emanation of the evil Bush administration.

(...)

This was completely foreseeable and in fact many people did foresee it. One political party, in Congress and in the executive branch, tried repeatedly to tighten up the rules. The other party blocked every such attempt and tried to loosen them.

(...)

Isn't there a story here? Doesn't journalism require that you who produce our daily paper tell the truth about who brought us to a position where the only way to keep confidence in our economy was a $700 billion bailout? Aren't you supposed to follow the money and see which politicians were benefiting personally from the deregulation of mortgage lending?

I have no doubt that if these facts had pointed to the Republican Party or to John McCain as the guilty parties, you would be treating it as a vast scandal. "Housing-gate," no doubt. Or "Fannie-gate."

(...)

But right now, you are consenting to or actively promoting a big fat lie ó that the housing crisis should somehow be blamed on Bush, McCain, and the Republicans. You have trained the American people to blame everything bad ó even bad weather ó on Bush, and they are responding as you have taught them to.

(...)

If you at our local daily newspaper continue to let Americans believe ó and vote as if ó President Bush and the Republicans caused the crisis, then you are joining in that lie.

If you do not tell the truth about the Democrats ó including Barack Obama ó and do so with the same energy you would use if the miscreants were Republicans ó then you are not journalists by any standard.

You're just the public relations machine of the Democratic Party, and it's time you were all fired and real journalists brought in, so that we can actually have a news paper in our city.

Every blogger should link this column.

Every American should send it to his local newspaper.

Posted by JohnGalt at 10:35 PM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2008

Ethical Conundrum Solved

Bloggers -- and I am not immune -- love to celebrate the missteps and economic failures of traditional media. The New York Times Stock Chart is a better laugh to me than all the comics the paper lacks. The disappearance of any viewers younger than 90 for the evening network snooze fests from Brokaw and Couric and Williams are chocolate covered frozen schadenfreude on a stick.

Yet, as news consumers and specifically as bloggers, we require a robust hard news reporting segment and would revel in moderately objective and accurate news gathering from the major dailies and networks.

I've got your ethical prescription: enjoy the demise of the Associated Press! Glenn Reynolds links to another daily dropping its subscription:

Unhappy with both the A.P. service and its price ó more than $800,000 a year at a time when The [Columbus] Dispatchís finances are severely pinched ó the paper on Friday took the once-unthinkable step of saying it would drop the service.

The AP had led the way in bias and groupthink. Indeed, its very existence is anti-Hayekian, giving a few individuals massive control of the voice and direction of national newscasting. Papers could replace the AP's homogeneous, biased garbage with original reporting. And there are moves afoot to syndicate these features from the bottom-up instead of the top-down.

So feel free to cheer as the AP goes down in flames. Coverage won't get any worse -- and may well get better. Tell 'em jk says it's okay.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:29 PM | Comments (0)

October 16, 2008

The Associated Press

I don't think they're still teaching the "inverted pyramid" in J-school. Here's the AP lead paragraph:

WASHINGTON - The Secret Service is looking into a second allegation that a participant at a Republican political rally shouted "kill him," referring to Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.

Paragraph #9:
So far, the Secret Service has not found anyone else who heard "kill him" Tuesday except for the Times-Tribune reporter.

In other news: JENNIFER LOPEZ HAS BEEN SHOT!
UPDATE!
Jennifer Lopez has NOT been shot, not even slightly. I was confusing her with President McKinley. I apologise for any distress this caused.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:52 PM | Comments (0)

October 13, 2008

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!

Suddenly, "President Obama" is not the worst thing imaginable. This is:

Columnist Paul Krugman wins Nobel economics prize

UPDATE: I had to see Don Luskin's take. He does not disappoint:

And even as a public intellectual, the prize is inappropriate, because never before has a scientist operating in the capacity of a public intellectual so abused and debased the science he purports to represent. Krugman's New York Times column drawing on economics is the equivalent of 2006's Nobelists in Physics, astromers Mather and Smoot, doing a column on astrology -- and then, in that column, telling lies about astronomy.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:55 AM | Comments (6)
But Keith thinks:

jk: It just goes to show that the other Nobel prize categories are going the route of the peace prize. Arafat? Carter? Puh-leeze. Winning a Nobel prize is something akin to a movie winning the Cannes film festival, or Sundance. Extra points seem to be given for being counter-culture, anti-American, or simply wrong-headed.

I've come to the conclusion that these prizes are the elitist version of the Project Runway or Top Chef "reality" shows - every season, three quarters of the viewer are left screaming at their televisions "how could you people pick that moron? I'll never watch your show again!" - and then come back next season to do it all over again.

Posted by: Keith at October 13, 2008 11:42 AM
But jk thinks:

I'm just glad poor Yasser Arafat is not alive to see his honor debased so...

I should be more serious. Krugman was once a serious economist and his contributions on trade are well regarded and needed as we fly into protectionism. But does anybody believe for one second that he was honored for his academic contributions and not for his Anti-Bush rants in the New York Times? Bueller?

Posted by: jk at October 13, 2008 12:40 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

JK, it's scary how we shared nearly the exact wording. I wrote Luskin this morning, "Or is the economics prize going the way of the peace prize, i.e. having no credibility because it invariably goes to some leftist schmuck?"

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at October 13, 2008 1:40 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Something to add. I was telling a friend at lunchtime, when he called to see if I'd heard Krugman got the econ prize, that Krugman's "real" economics work never impressed me. Yes, he did a lot of analysis and a bit of modeling that bolsters the concept of free trade, but that's only empirically proving what is conceptually obvious.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at October 13, 2008 1:47 PM
But T. Greer thinks:

Hey, lets look at the bright side- a blogger has won the Nobel Prize for Economics! Talk about glass ceilings- We are all that much closer to a Nobel Prize!


~T. Greer, ignoring Krugman's NYT days.

Posted by: T. Greer at October 13, 2008 2:24 PM
But T. Greer thinks:

Oops. Meant to say pre-NYT days.

~T. Greer, typing to fast for his own good.

Posted by: T. Greer at October 13, 2008 2:26 PM

October 2, 2008

I Was Racist. And I am Sorry

Another ThreeSources friend (a powerful blog like this can have three of four) sends a link to Ifill's defending her impartiality:

"Do you think they made the same assumptions about Lou Cannon (who is white) when he wrote his book about Reagan?" said Ifill, who is black. Asked if there were racial motives at play, she said, "I don't know what it is. I find it curious."

Be curious no more, Ms. Ifill. As part of the "one-day blog chatter [...] to destroy [your] reputation," I'll admit it was racism, pure and simple.

Were a white man moderating the debate with a book on "Great War Heroes in 21st Century Politics" slated for release on Inauguration Day, you wouldn't hear a peep out of me. Or, certainly, the New York Times. Or the Obama campaign.

Call me The Man. I'm just here to keep the sisters down.

UPDATE: I've received permission to include the emailer's letter:

This is Gwen Ifill's response to criticism over her conflict of interest in tonight's debate? She was aware enough of the appearance of impropriety to skip mentioning her forthcoming book to the Commission on Presidential Debates, what our mothers would have called dishonesty by omission, and when she is confronted with her duplicity she wonders "if it's because I'm black." This should be stunning, but it is not. She should be scorned and removed from the debate but she will remain. The malignant MSM should finally be recognized for threat it is, but it will continue to flourish, continue to push centralization, and continue shilling for the consolidation of power and "some pigs are more equal than others" elitism. The Gregorys and the Greenspans will enjoy Washington society with the Brokaws and the Rathers and those of us who would like to see just a bit of fair play are stuck with the Three Stooges on Fox and Friends to point out the emperor's nakedness. God help us.

On a separate rant, as disturbing as Sarah's Supreme Court response to Katie Couric was (don't you think a former mayor and sitting governor should have shouted Kelo at the top of her lungs?) Joe Biden's response to the same question was far more disturbing and she didn't bat an eye, or follow his response with further questioning as to why the issue of violence against women needs to be Federalized in the first place or how it could possibly be piggybacked on interstate commerce. Frankly I doubt she even understood what he was suggesting.


Posted by John Kranz at 10:28 AM | Comments (0)

October 1, 2008

Gewn Ifill -- Unsuitable Moderator

My heart sank when I first heard that PBS's Gwen Ifill was to host the VP Debate. I don't know if many ThreeSourcers subject themselves to politics on PBS, but Ifill is the worst of the worst for liberal bias.

I have fought with "talk radio Republicans" over immigration and, now, the Paulson Plan. But I understand there is a groundswell to oust Ifill; Rush and Hugh can sign me up for this. FOX & Friends (yes, I was concerned enough about overseas markets to flip on the perky three this morning) highlighted that she has written a book subtitled "Politics and Race in the Age of Obama." The book is about successes by African-American politicians, which is fair enough.

But the book (to be released on Inauguration Day) calls Senator Obama "a transformative figure." Well, I am sure he is. But I am not sure that Ifill, with a demonstrable financial and emotional interest in his election is a good choice to moderate a debate.

I guess Kos was busy, though now that I make that joke, I'd suspect he would be better.

UPDATE: Enumerating my new found friends, I forgot Michelle.

UPDATE II: Un. Be. Leave. Able.



Hat-tip: Gateway Pundit

UPDATE III: New found friend Greta Van Susteren: "in law, this would create a mistrial."

UPDATE IV: James Taranto differs. In "Some conservatives see injustice in the pursuit of moderation," Taranto concedes most of the points but claims that the concern is overwrought , based mostly on the lack of importance for a debate moderator.

A little perspective is in order, however. The analogy between a debate moderator and a judge is overwrought. Unlike a judge, a moderator decides nothing beyond what questions to ask and how to keep the debate flowing. To put it another way, voters, unlike jurors, can make their decision on whatever basis they choose. They are not subject to instructions from the bench.

I yield to no one in my appreciation for Mr. Taranto but am not swayed. Even he concedes "If you're a stickler about journalistic conflicts of interest, you can make a good case that Ifill was not the ideal choice of moderator." Put me down as a stickler, James.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:18 AM | Comments (0)

September 28, 2008

Yet Another Huck-a-Whack

The Parsin' Parson is much better suited to hosting a talk show than governing, I should be glad.

But my TiVo recordings of "The Beltway Boys" and "Journal Editorial Report" this weekend all came up Huck. There are only three* good shows on FOXNews, are you telling me that two of them have been cancelled?

* Beltway Boys, Journal Editorial Report and Special Report with Brit Hume. FOX News Sunday is broadcast on the FOX Network

Posted by John Kranz at 12:01 PM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2008

Media Bias



obama_ears.jpg Those Right wing nutjobs at the Wall Street Journal Editorial Page have gone too far. The Murdoch takeover has become all too apparent.

Today's lead editorial has a trademark woodcut illustration of Senator Obama. Yet the forces of Murdoch bleed the illo into the text to highlight the Senator's large ears. This is why the founders fought against factionalism.


Posted by John Kranz at 11:55 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

"All the better to listen to Ahmandinejad with, my dear."

Posted by: johngalt at September 28, 2008 2:31 AM

September 18, 2008

Other Than That, He's a Big Obama Fan

I have had some harsh words about FOXNews, but I cannot tell a lie -- I enjoyed this commentary

Hat-tip: Cap'n Ed Morrissey

Posted by John Kranz at 2:35 PM | Comments (0)

September 12, 2008

Mainstreaming It

Mike Rappaport on the Gibson Palin interview:

So, according to Wikipedia at least, I had been right. It was associated with several different notions. And more importantly, Sarah Palin was correct to ask Gibson, which aspect of the doctrine? If Wikipedia is correct, Gibson owes Palin another apology.

What is going on with Gibson? My guess is that there are at least two reasons for his hostility. First, he cares about his peers in the MSM and they want him to be harsh to Palin. He is trying his best, and that involves some inaccurate and unfair questioning. Second, he was chosen to interview Palin, and that makes him suspect with the others. To show that he really is no pushover, he needs to be harsher than he should be.

Of course, there are boobs out there who don't realize the tricks that are being played. For example, Andrew Sullivan thinks Palin should have known what the Bush Doctrine was, but doesn't that suggest he is misinformed about it? The rest of Sullivan's post has similarly weak points, including his claim that she doesn't know what the presidential oath says.


I suppose one would be wrong to expect an ABC anchor to be as authoritative and factual as Wikipedia.

Everybody is talking about the Gibson interview, which I did not see, and I have not heard a word about the 9/11 Presidential Forum, which I might have been the only American to watch. Juan Williams called it a snore-fest. Brit Hume, when told the campaigns were striving for comity and avoiding controversy, asked his correspondent "well, can't you drum some up?"

Too nicey-nice I suppose. I'll suggest both candidates di pretty well. Perhaps Senator Obama was able to recapture some of his "cool" in the non-combative venue. He was pretty charming in front of a self-described "home crowd" at Columbia.

Yet, I was astonished at the cluelessness of the media moderators. PBS NewsHour anchor Judy Woodruff and Richard Stengel, editor of TIME magazine were clearly both auditioning for the role of Ellsworth Toohey when Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie get around to filming "The Fountainhead." It was a great example of bias in that it was not intentional, but they clearly don't think anything ever gets done unless there is a government program. Woodruff could not accept Senator McCain's assertion that America was "exceptional" as not "you're saying we're better than other countries."

People really do get their news from Time and NPR and feel that they're informed. But their leading lights were pretty dim last night.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:27 PM | Comments (1)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Count The Refugee as the other person to watch the snore-fest. Obama did well, as jk noted, but the moderators seemed more pointed toward McCain and more conversational with Obama. They read McCain's responses on a couple of questions to Obama before he answered, which seemed to be a very unfair advantage.

McCain articulated some populist positions that made The Refugee cringe (i.e., elevating the "Office of Volunteerism" [or whatever the names is] to a position 'just down the hall.')

The Refugee had to chuckle when Obama seemed to suggest that the way to improve volunteerism is to pay 'em more...hopefully, it was just a misunderstanding...

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at September 12, 2008 2:23 PM

September 7, 2008

NYTimes Gets It Right

We beat up on the Gray Lady around here, but Don Luskin points out that they got it right with this editorial:

Where is it written that only senators are qualified to become President? Surely Ronald Reagan does not subscribe to that maxim. Or where is it written that mere representatives aren't qualified, like Geraldine Ferraro of Queens?
...Where is it written that governors and mayors, like Dianne Feinstein of San Francisco, are too local, too provincial? That didn't stop Richard Nixon from picking Spiro Agnew, a suburban politician who became Governor of Maryland. Remember the main foreign affairs credential of Georgia's Governor Carter: He was a member of the Trilateral Commission.

...What a splendid system, we say to ourselves, that takes little-known men, tests them in high office and permits them to grow into statesmen. This rationale may even be right, but then let it also be fair. Why shouldn't a little-known woman have the same opportunity to grow?


Sadly, they published this in July 1984...

Posted by John Kranz at 2:50 PM | Comments (0)

September 2, 2008

Kicking Ass And Taking Names

I'm going to shut up a little this week and enjoy the pictures and insights of "our brother in St. Paul," AlexC. Well done, sir.

UPDATE: Brother ac politely declines my offer to let him do all the work...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:13 AM | Comments (0)

August 20, 2008

Vote Charlie for Hot Blogger!

ThreeSources friend Charlie "Tecumseh" on the PA turnpike has been nominated for the HotBloggerCalendar.

Vote for him if you can -- I could not figure out the site (perhaps voting is not open yet?) We'll keep you informed...

Posted by John Kranz at 3:45 PM | Comments (0)

August 4, 2008

WaPo Headline

Y'know, I almost hate to beat up on the venerable Washington Post. They have provided more honest coverage of post-surge Iraq and the Obama campaign than most other media outlets.

But today, a Rasmussen Poll shows Senator McCain with his first lead, and my WaPo email leads with the headline: Obama Leads, Pessimism Reigns Among Key Group. It seems -- can I get a "mirabile dictu?" -- that the überliberal, collectivist Senator has a lot of support from "low wage" workers.

Obama's advantage is attributable largely to overwhelming support from two traditional Democratic constituencies: African Americans and Hispanics. But even among white workers -- a group of voters that has been targeted by both parties as a key to victory in November -- Obama leads McCain by 10 percentage points, 47 percent to 37 percent, and has the advantage as the more empathetic candidate.

There wouldn't be, I don't know, the slightest chance that a lot of these people are on the government teat programs and might have a fiduciary interest in some of Senator Obama's proposals?
The new poll included interviews with 1,350 randomly selected workers 18 to 64 years old who put in at least 30 hours a week but earned $27,000 or less last year. As a group, they are somewhat less likely to be Republicans than all adults under age 65 and are also less likely to be registered to vote. As many call themselves conservatives as liberal, and nearly four in 10 said their views on most political matters are "moderate."

Quite a scoop, WaPo, quite a scoop!

Posted by John Kranz at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)

July 20, 2008

The New Graeme Frosts II

(This is a long update to the post below, "The New Graeme Frosts.")

I wondered how long it would take to see the "bloggers are mean to the overweight" meme. Eidelblog links to a Kevin Hayden post dated 7:16 last night.

In the process, they neglect to consider the high percentages of Ohio families reporting similar financial difficulties, even those with family incomes between $40K and $79K. Paying for gas, getting a good job or getting a raise, paying for healthcare or insurance has grown difficult for between 1 and 4 and 1 in 2 Ohioans in that middle class income range.

They neglect to mention that the daughter seems motivated to work and to educate herself, while refusing to get pregnant to gain more assistance.

Leaving aside the unclaimed abstinence medal, there really are two stories here. Perry is right to focus on "state worship" as enabling these people to make bad decisions with little or no consequence. I'm equally interested as a media story. NPR wanted to run this story so very badly. I'm sure they advertised for someone to feature. And I am sure they were delighted to get Angelica and Gloria.

I am pretty uncomfortable piling on those two women, because -- unlike the Frosts -- they didn't put themselves up (Does NPR pay? I hope so in this instance.) And their plight is pretty sad. I will not agree with the commenters on Gateway Pundit who claim these two live a princely life because their percentage of fixed payments to income is low. I flatly condemn the cruel sexual comments.

My complaint is with NPR. Hayden has a point that it is more difficult to assemble a healthy diet on less money. They can't really afford a health club and personal trainer, and starchy, high carbohydrate foods are the cheapest. BUT THAT WASN'T THE STORY! Had NPR done a feature on those who find it hard to eat healthfully in Bush's Amerikkka, that would have been an option, and Ms. Nunez and Ms. Hernandez would have been great "gets."

But NPR was sworn to show starvation. That supports their call for more government help and puts the current administrationís policies in a bad light. So they comb the Buckeye State for a family to feature and these are the best they can find. Hayden tells us that a quarter of Ohio families are in that predicament -- so why did NPR choose Nunez and Hernandez?

I suggest that perhaps there are not millions of starving families in Ohio and that NPR had to scrape pretty far down the barrel.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:45 AM | Comments (0)

May 5, 2008

Dumbest. Idea. All. Week.

Don Luskin ups the ante. In a rare display of Internet understatement, he thinks this qualifies only for worst idea of the week:

The time has come for the nation's wealthiest colleges and universities to rescue its leading newspapers ó resources almost as vital to higher education's purpose as libraries, laboratories, classrooms, and concert halls. The plan I have in mind would call upon the richest institutions to set aside 3 percent of their endowments to buy The New York Times. That's for a start. Additional purchases of other newspapers by other endowments should follow.

Man, why didn't we think of that?

Posted by John Kranz at 3:57 PM

May 1, 2008

Huh? What?

AP: Consumer spending up but much of gain reflects higher prices

WASHINGTON - Soaring prices for food, gas and other everyday needs pushed consumer spending to a faster pace than expected in March.

The Commerce Department reported Thursday that consumer spending was up 0.4 percent, double the increase that economists had forecast.


NYTimes: Low Spending Is Taking Toll on Economy
For months, beleaguered American consumers have defied expert forecasts that they would soon succumb to the pressures of falling home prices, fewer jobs and shrinking paychecks. Now, they appear to have given in.

On Wednesday, the Commerce Department reported that the economy continued to stagnate during the first three months of the year, with a sharp pullback


UPDATE: The Associated Press has changed the headline to "Soaring prices for food, gas push consumer spending higher" I'm sure they apologize for any implied optimism.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:29 AM

Headline of the Week

Larry Kudlow mentioned it on his show last night, and Instapundit links today:

Jimmy P: Dude, Where's My Recession?

Remember, the shorthand rule for declaring a recession is back-to-back quarters of negative growth. The semiofficial recession judge, the National Bureau of Economic Research, has a more complex formula, but I am not sure it has ever declared a recession when the economy never actually shrank. And consider this: The Intrade online betting market now says there is a meager 25 percent chance of a recessionóusing the negative-back-to-back-quarters definitionóin 2008.


Of course, even the +0.6 growth didn't stop Kudlow's permabears from asserting recession on the show last night.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:24 AM

April 21, 2008

Best Blogger Ever

It really may be Jeff Goldstein. He explains his site and ties it into my favorite novel:

If youíve ever read, say, Gravityís Rainbow or Foucaultís Pendulum, youíll note that the first fifty or so pages are incredibly slow going and, from a purely passive reading level, difficult to get through. The reason is, I think, that both Pynchon and Eco are actually taking that opportunity not only to provide narrative exposition, but instead are interested in teaching you how to read the text: they are introducing you to the peculiar grammar of the work ó the way it operates linguistically, the way connections are made in that narrative universe, the way temporality will be approached and approximated, the way movement in point of view will be signaled, etc.
[...]
I try to attract those readers willing to take the leap or invest the time.

And of course, I in turn reward your loyalty and determination by disappearing for months at a time.


Hat-tip: Instapundit (who's not too bad either).

Posted by John Kranz at 11:33 AM | Comments (2)
But Ardsgaine thinks:

Well... I'm at his site enough to qualify as a stalker, but as Gomer once said, "I like him. I don't love him, but I like him."

Posted by: Ardsgaine at April 21, 2008 1:18 PM
But jk thinks:

Still no "thrills up my leg," Ardsgaine, but I have really enjoyed his stuff over the years, and the Gravity's Rainbow riff is well done.

Posted by: jk at April 21, 2008 3:42 PM

April 11, 2008

Sunny Optimism

The WaPo highlights "A Weekend to Start Fixing the World"

Financial markets are tumbling. The world economy is starting to sputter. Food prices have shot up so far, so fast, that there are riots in the streets of many poor nations.

It's a hard time to be one of the masters of the global economy.

Those leaders -- finance ministers from all over the world -- are gathering in Washington this weekend to sort out their reactions to the most profound global economic crises in at least a decade. The situation could reveal the limitations that international economic institutions face in dealing with the risks inherent to global capitalism.


Don't buy any green bananas, kids, this old world is not gonna be around much longer.

Sadly, the real threat is that our 535 world fixers in Washington (before the guests arrive) will read the WaPo and feel compelled to do more fixing. Starbucks has capitulated to Lassez Faire, lets think about calming down and giving markets a chance to work.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:56 AM

April 7, 2008

Kudos to CBS News!

I am serious as a heart attack. This is a superb bit of reporting:





Ow! It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

I'm always good for a segue, this made me think of Arnold Kling's awesome piece on Inequality and Excess (of political power).

Can you name the members of the County Council in Montgomery County, Maryland? I can't name very many of them, and I live there. Still, getting elected to the County Council in Montgomery County, which is pretty far down the ladder in terms of political power in the United States, enables you to control more annual spending than the wealth of Donald Trump or Steven Jobs.

At the Federal level, the Budget is $3 trillion. If you divide that by 535 (the number of Senators and Congressmen), then on average each legislator controls over $5 billion in spending per year. That is more than even the world's richest person could spend annually.


Kling starts with the Clinton's $109 Million income between 2000-2007. This generates a lot of ink, but the CBS story -- and would I ever doubt a CBS story? -- says Rep. Murtha brought $159.1M to PA-13 in earmarks in one year.

Those Clinton speeches start to look like good value. Hat-tip: Greyhawk via Insty

Posted by John Kranz at 7:28 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Grand larceny in broad daylight - and all we can do about it is run 3-minute news segments and blog like madmen.

The founders rolled over in their collective graves upon passage of the 16th Amendment. How much longer until Americans roll over on Congress?

Posted by: johngalt at April 12, 2008 12:41 PM

April 6, 2008

Quote of the Day

Every four years, we are assured that "this will be the dirtiest campaign ever" when history is always full of more acrimony and more biting invective. We get Scarlett O'Hara-esque vapors if McCain is called a warmonger, or Senator Clinton is accused of "misspeaking" or if we claim that perhaps, Senator Obama might not actually walk on water.

Too bad they did not have blogs in 1856 -- this should have received more currency:

"No greater service could be rendered to the cause of truth than by putting Greeley where he ought to be. He is a liar and the truth is not in him. He is a mush toad spotted traitor to the Constitution. And he is a knave beyond the lowest reach of any comparison I can make. Shall this political turkey buzzard be permitted to vomit the filthy contents of his stomach on every decent man in the country without having his neck twisted?" -- Judge Jeremiah S. Black of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court defending his friend and Democratic nominee, James Buchannan from attacks by Horace Greeley.

From J.S. Black to J. Reynolds, June 9, 1856, Black MSS, Library of Congress. Quoted in Carl B. Swisher's "Roger B. Taney" Macmillan Company, 1935.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:15 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Nice!

Reminds me of one of my favorite insults:

"No one can have a greater opinion of him than I, and I think he's a filthy little beast."

Posted by: johngalt at April 6, 2008 2:22 PM

March 27, 2008

AP Economic Wisdom

The Republic is truly doomed. I was with some relatives yesterday who are pretty well informed. Not news junkies or blog fiends, but good, average-American, read-the-papers-watch-the-news types. They discussed how bad the economy is and the evils of predatory lending.

The lead Yahoo/AP headline today is pretty instructive: "Economy sputters with 0.6 percent growth"

I suppose you can call < 1% sputtering -- but I read it and thought "well, that's not recession." And when you get to the fourth paragraph, the AP confirms:

Under one rough rule, the economy needs to contract for six straight months to be considered in a recession. The government will release its estimate for first-quarter GDP in late April.

Under another rough rule, Zero degrees Celsius is considered "freezing," and 4 + 7 is generally considered to be around 11.

An instructive article would have pointed that out in the lede. 0.6 is sluggish but a recession is two consecutive quarters of negative growth. Instead we get speculation:

WASHINGTON - The economy nearly sputtered out at the end of the year and is probably faring even worse now amid continuing housing, credit and financial crises.

We speculate in the lede, provide a poor definition of recession in paragraph four, and put a negative headline on it -- yup, it's an AP story. Kind of surprising they didn't mention Abu Ghraib...

Posted by John Kranz at 10:44 AM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

In France, 0.4% economic growth per quarter is called something else: normal.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at March 27, 2008 1:22 PM

March 15, 2008

Words Matter

Blogging sucks. Every time I procrastinate in writing something, I always find it more thought out and better written (or is that ďwritten better?Ē).

BeldarBlog says "Lies about "the George W. Bush Recessionô of 2008" are well underway." I link not to promote a rosy economic scenario, but to highlight something that disturbs me. Take it away, Beldar:

The word "recession" has a very, very specific meaning in classical economics. In fact, this same article admits that (emphasis mine), just before it starts to lie: "Although the classic definition of recession is two consecutive quarters of declines in the gross domestic product ...." If these people were being candid, they would complete this sentence by saying, "... but in this article we're using that same word, 'recession,' to mean something different, something poorly defined, something vague, and something ominous, all because it suits our purposes better and we don't mind being liars."

I read the same story in the Wall Street Journal and had the same thought. Even on Kudlow and Company, where I expect a little better, they are pretty cavalier about the technical and the casual use of the R word.

The thesis of the WSJ article is that "a majority of economists" in a forecasting survey say that the US is already in recession. Aggregate Economic predictions, huh. Insert joke here.

UPDATE: Steve Horwitz at the Austrian Economics Blog asks if we'd expect the following headlines:

"Three-quarters think Swayze X-ray shows pancreatic cancer"

"Three-quarters think the barometric pressure is falling"


Good stuff (HT: Everyday Economist)

Posted by John Kranz at 11:09 AM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

There you have it - "The economic analysis is settled." (At least until January 20th, when it MIGHT be "re-evaluated.")

Posted by: johngalt at March 15, 2008 2:55 PM
But HB thinks:

This reminds me of Warren Buffett's comments from a few weeks back where he argued that we were in a recession even if the technical definition wasn't satisfied. If I was the reporter on the Buffett story, the headline would have read:

'Buffett: If we redefine recession, we are currently in a recession.'

Posted by: HB at March 16, 2008 2:54 PM
But jk thinks:

Heh. And if we redefine "hurricane" to mean four inches of spring snow, Colorado is having its first hurricane.

Posted by: jk at March 17, 2008 10:27 AM

February 7, 2008

Hooray for Hugh!

I was going to post this yesterday but it is more germane today. Even before Governor Romney left the race, his übersupporter, Hugh Hewitt, was reminding his readers about the stakes. Hugh gives seven reasons to support the nominee, I'll excerpt one:

Folks who want to take their ball and go home have to realize that even three SCOTUS appointments could revolutionize the way elections are handled in this country in a stroke, mandating the submission of redistricting lines to court scrutiny for "fairness."

Posted by John Kranz at 2:06 PM | Comments (3)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Dale Franks at Q&O again asks how Hewitt can switch so quickly.

http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?Entry=7824

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 8, 2008 1:35 PM
But jk thinks:

I'm a pretty unlikely Hugh defender, but it does not surprise me at all. Your candidate drops out, a clear front-runner is created, and you choose to support the front-runner.

It is very consistent with his "Painting the Map Red" book he penned before the previous election. Hewitt, like me, sees a lot of danger in electing a Democrat in 2008. He wanted Romney, I wanted Giuliani, but we are both prepared to support McCain. So as to avoid Clinton or Obama.


Nope, no whiplash here -- and I am not even a lawyer.

Posted by: jk at February 8, 2008 1:48 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Well, as I've been saying, optimism must be tempered by reality.

Perhaps Hewitt did realize the inevitable, but he's always been a bit of a shill anyway. What gets me, and I've said this before, is that a self-professed staunch conservative will support a moral conservative who governs like a socialist. Romney's economic record is undesirable, but maybe he can just flop again on abortion and social issues, and become Hillary's running mate since they have the same "health insurance" vision.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 11, 2008 1:52 PM

February 6, 2008

Headlines Headlines Headlines

You don't say?

Police: Crack Found in Man's Buttocks

(tip to JJP)

Posted by AlexC at 11:32 PM | Comments (3)
But jk thinks:

Sorry, buddy, I posted this a few days ago...

Posted by: jk at February 7, 2008 11:55 AM
But AlexC thinks:

Gah! How embarassing!

Posted by: AlexC at February 7, 2008 12:45 PM
But jk thinks:

You can tell who the two intellectuals are around here, huh?

Posted by: jk at February 7, 2008 1:58 PM

February 4, 2008

How Not to Smuggle Cocaine

Mr. Taranto finds the funniest of his headlines ever:

Police: Crack Found in Man's Buttocks

Somewhere, Mencken is smiling...

Posted by John Kranz at 5:24 PM | Comments (2)
But mdmhvonpa thinks:

Nancy Reagan was right!

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at February 5, 2008 10:00 AM
But jk thinks:

She usually was, man, she usually was.

Posted by: jk at February 5, 2008 12:19 PM

January 15, 2008

Who Let This Guy on the NYTimes Ed Page?

That weird, swishing sound you hear is the entire population of West Manhattan spewing coffee out on their [Perry E, can you help me out -- what would they eat for breakfast?].

Imagine, you open your New York Times to catch up on the latest foreign policy truths from Thomas Friedman, get the state of the economy from Paul Krugman, see who MoDo is shredding today, and -- wait a minute! What is this? Bill Kristol?

Last yearís success, in Anbar and elsewhere, was made possible by confidence among Iraqis that U.S. troops would stay and help protect them, that the U.S. would not abandon them to their enemies. Because the U.S. sent more troops instead of withdrawing ó because, in other words, President Bush won his battles in 2007 with the Democratic Congress ó we have been able to turn around the situation in Iraq.

And now Iraqís Parliament has passed a de-Baathification law ó one of the so-called benchmarks Congress established for political reconciliation. For much of 2007, Democrats were able to deprecate the military progress and political reconciliation taking place on the ground by harping on the failure of the Iraqi government to pass the benchmark legislation. They are being deprived of even that talking point.

Yesterday, on ďMeet the Press,Ē Hillary Clinton claimed that the Iraqis are changing their ways in part because of the Democratic candidatesí ďcommitment to begin withdrawing our troops in January of 2009.Ē So the Democratic Party, having proclaimed that the war is lost and having sought to withdraw U.S. troops, deserves credit for any progress that may have been achieved in Iraq.

That is truly a fairy tale. And it is driven by a refusal to admit real success because that success has been achieved under the leadership of ... George W. Bush. The horror!


Hat-tip: Larry Kudlow

Posted by John Kranz at 11:42 AM

January 10, 2008

Merry Christmas, From Rupert

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Page has a new look and a new price.

We're rolling out a new Web site for the Journal editorial page, offering all of our editorials and op-eds, video interviews and commentary. Please enjoy our message of free people and free markets -- for free.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:36 AM

January 4, 2008

Jonathan Last Blogging at Standard

Galley Slave, Weekly Standard writer, and jk-Buffy-sire, Jonathan V. Last, is slumming. The Weekly Standard's Campaign Standard blog has made some arrangement to get Last doing some political blogging. I'm rather glad. Here he is on Obama Triumphant:

Portsmouth, N.H.
It's 5 degrees outside, the intersections near the Pan-Am hangar where Obama's first event is this morning are plastered with placards urging us to "Stop Global Warming," and I'm parked next to two Priuses. Welcome to Obama Nation.

A lot's being said about Obama's youth bulge in Iowa last night. He took 57 percent of the under-30 vote while Hillary Clinton took just about 50 percent of the over-65 vote. (Including, one assumes, a monster margin in the 100-and-over vote.)


Great stuff, I hope they keep him throughout the campaign.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:44 PM

January 3, 2008

Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair magazine introduces Karl Rove as follows:

A principal architect of the disastrous presidency of George W. Bush, Karl Rove, 57, has charted a long course from the internship he landed with the Republican Party in Utah almost four decades ago. Here, the presidentís former deputy chief of staff reflects on his fear of going broke, his impatience, and his voracious reading habit.

Rove's answers to the questionnaire are pretty interesting. At least they were fair, huh Karl?

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 8:08 PM

December 28, 2007

I Agree With Glenn Greenwald

Stop the presses! Moonbat lefty, Glenn Greenwald, has penned a paragraph with which I cannot disagree. I was going to attack Peggy Noonan's insane WSJ Editorial this morning. Maybe after a few cups of coffee, I might have said something like:

What a stupid and vapid woman this is, but respected and admired by our media class because she fits right in with them ó endlessly impressed by her own sophistication, maturity and insight while drooling out platitudes one never hears except in seventh-grade cafeterias and on our political talk shows. As always, this isnít worth noting because the adolescent stupidity on display here is unique to Noonan, but precisely because it isnít. This is how our national elections are decided: by people like her, spewing things like this.

That's Greenwald, quoted in a Protein Wisdom post which is concerned with whether (as Greenwald charges) Noonan used a pejorative term when she said John Edwards was "poofing" his hair on YouTube.

Without delving into poof etymology (Rule #2, No Poofters!) I can't fault Grunewaldís distain for today's column. It's a crowning achievement in years of decline for Noonan. Look at my posts from three or four years ago, and you'll see she was one of my favorite writers.

Now I think she is becoming the Republicans' Helen Thomas. Today she enumerates which Presidential candidates are "reasonable" enough to be President. Biden: yes, Dodd: yes, Clinton: yes but no... She dismisses Edwards for the famous YouTube hair care tutorial, but not policy.

I've made the comparison before, but again, read Noonan. then compare to a typically smart column from Kim Strassel comparing Senator Obama's "New Ideas" to classic, boilerplate liberalism.

The torch has been passed, the runner has left the county, the tables have been picked up and the spectators have gone home. Strassel is the political voice of the WSJ Ed page.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:35 PM

December 21, 2007

Putting the But First

No, I'm not offering a lesson on skating backwards, just giving some props to AP Economics Writer Martin Crutsinger. Most AP writers will provide some good economic news, followed by but, as in "GDP growth was revised up to 7.9% today, but concerns about Abu Ghraib, global warming, and lead paint in Chinese toys still rattled consumers."

That's child's play. Crutsinger provides some good news, but he goes butt first, to prevent your giddy enthusiasm from making you drop the paper and missing the dark cloud behind the silver lining:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Consumers put aside worries about slumping home sales and soaring gasoline prices and headed to the malls in November, pushing spending up by the largest amount in 3 1/2 years. The better-than-expected surge lessened fears of an imminent recession.

I'd comment further, but I am so worried about slumping home sales and soaring gas prices (in my neighborhood, they have "soared" from $3.09 to $2.89), I can't really continue. Have a good weekend, y'all!

Posted by John Kranz at 6:55 PM

November 15, 2007

VDH

Professor Hanson points out that the gains in Iraq are not getting the press that Abu Ghraib did. Ever cautious, he wonders if we have indeed passed a turning point:

Nevertheless, we may be witnessing one of those radical, unforeseen reversals in America's wars that have often changed our history.

The White House was burned by British forces in late August 1814; a little more than four months later, the British were routed at New Orleans. During the Civil War, the Union army was on the ropes in July 1864 yet outside Atlanta by September. The Germans were driving through France in March 1918, but fleeing toward the Rhine by August. The communists took Seoul in early January 1951, yet were pushed back across the Demilitarized Zone a little more than three months later.

Of course, we don't know the final outcome in Iraq, given the remaining problems of Shiite militias and diehard al-Qaidists - and the question of our own remaining resolve.


Hat-tip: Hugh

Posted by John Kranz at 6:59 PM

November 14, 2007

Layers

This is an effect of the layers upon layers of editorial oversight in the mainstream media.

In a Nov. 13 story, The Associated Press incorrectly reported that Paris Hilton was praised by conservationists for highlighting the problem of binge-drinking elephants in northeastern India. Lori Berk, a publicist for Hilton, said she never made any comments about helping drunken elephants in India.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say there isn't a binge-drinking elephant problem in India.

Just a hunch.

Posted by AlexC at 1:22 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Don Luskin tells about the New York Times reporting that VP Al Gore will be donating his salary to charity, but not mentioning that it is his charity. Layers and layers.

Posted by: jk at November 14, 2007 1:38 PM

October 25, 2007

Beauchamp Rapprochement?

I will still spew a few angry words at the cowardice of Franklin Foer and the mendacity of the once proud "The New Republic."

But this Michael Yon piece on Private Beauchamp has silenced me forever on his score. Read the whole thing -- and send him $50 -- but the short version is that his commander gave him the chance to go or stay. And he chose, another time, to stay in Iraq and continue a difficult mission in our nation's uniform:

Lapses of judgment are bound to happen, and accountability is critical, but thatís not the same thing as pulling out the hanging rope every time a soldier makes a mistake.

Beauchamp is young; under pressure he made a dumb mistake. In fact, he has not always been an ideal soldier. But to his credit, the young soldier decided to stay, and he is serving tonight in a dangerous part of Baghdad. He might well be seriously injured or killed here, and he knows it. He could have quit, but he did not. He faced his peers. I can only imagine the cold shoulders, and worse, he must have gotten. He could have left the unit, but LTC Glaze told me that Beauchamp wanted to stay and make it right. Whatever price he has to pay, he is paying it.


You shut up one blogger, soldier. Thank you for your service.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 2:14 PM

October 24, 2007

It's True! I Read It In TNR!

Drudge says he's got the goods on TNR's latest fabulist.

I love this story. I'll never tire of it.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 2:15 PM

October 13, 2007

An MSM Moment

Kind of like a "Senior Moment," I suppose -- I had an MSM moment this morning.

My recording of the Rockies game ended with two outs and two strikes on the last batter in the bottom of the 11th. I first ensured that our incredible team prevailed and they did.

Then I saw the lead Yahoo head: Ex-general: 'No end in sight' in Iraq Wesley Clark? No, General Sanchez.

Retired Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, who commanded coalition troops for a year beginning June 2003, cast a wide net of blame for both political and military shortcomings in Iraq that helped open the way for the insurgency ó such as disbanding the Saddam-era military and failing to cement ties with tribal leaders and quickly establish civilian government after Saddam was toppled.

I certainly respect the General and his service but this was a disappointing attack on the administration. Or was it? Terri @ I Think ^(Link) Therefore I Err links to two stories which say the General attacked first-- and most vocally -- the press. Funny how that gets left out. Powerline:
The Washington Post's headline was typical: "Former Iraq Commander Faults Bush."

Actually, I don't believe Sanchez ever mentioned Bush by name, although, as I say, he was critical of just about everybody. But it would be hard to tell from press accounts of Sanchez's speech that he was mostly critical of...the press.


John Hinderacker provides much of the text of the speech, and General Sanchez did start on the press.

It is still a disappointment to read this story when General Petraeusís efforts seem to be bearing fruit. McClellan - Grant?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:53 AM

October 11, 2007

You live long enough...

You see everything!

Mickey Kaus lectures National Review for not being tough enough on Senator McCain vis-ŗ-vis immigration:

I think they're cheap dates. McCain obviously still believes his semi-amnesty is the essence of "real immigration reform." Is he saying it will have to wait until the border are actually secured? No. He only requires "trust" that the borders "will" be secured, trust that will be accomplished by any number of government confidence-building measures (success in Iraq, cutting spending, better FEMA disaster response) that have nothing to do with actually securing the border. ... I don't trust his definition of "trust," and he seems willfully oblivious to the difficulties facing any successful enforcement attempt--including a half-decade of lawsuits from many of McCain's pro-comprehensive allies. ..

Yeah! And the cut-and-run crowd at The Weekly Standard is just not committed to the war! How about those right-wing capitalist kooks at The Nation?...

I'm going back to bed.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:32 PM

October 1, 2007

Good News Leads the AP

I chide them when they bury it, I have to give props when they do it right. The top Yahoo/AP Headline as I post is: US, Iraqi Civilian Deaths Fall Sharply.

BAGHDAD - Deaths among American forces and Iraqi civilians fell dramatically last month to their lowest levels in more than a year, according to figures compiled by the U.S. military, the Iraqi government and The Associated Press.

The decline signaled a U.S. success in bringing down violence in Baghdad and surrounding regions since Washington completed its infusion of 30,000 more troops on June 15.

A total of 64 American forces died in September ó the lowest monthly toll since July 2006.

The decline in Iraqi civilian deaths was even more dramatic, falling from 1,975 in August to 922 last month, a decline of 53.3 percent. The breakdown in September was 844 civilians and 78 police and Iraqi soldiers, according to Iraq's ministries of Health, Interior and Defense.


Memphis, however, is a quagmire.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:47 AM

September 23, 2007

NYTimes: "We made a mistake"

As Instapundit says "Oops." As The NY Daily News says The old gray lady has some explaining to do.

Officials at the New York Times have admitted a liberal activist group was permitted to pay half the rate it should have for a provocative ad condemning U.S. Iraq commander Gen. David Petraeus.

The MoveOn ad, which cast Petraeus as "General Betray Us" and attacked his truthfulness, ran on the same day the commander made a highly anticipated appearance before Congress.

But since the liberal group paid the standby rate of $64,575 for the full-page ad, it should not have been guaranteed to run on Sept. 10, the day Petraeus warned Congress against a rapid withdrawal of troops from Iraq, Times personnel said.

"We made a mistake," Catherine Mathis, vice president of corporate communications for The Times, told the newspaper's public editor.


Hey these things happen. I'm just extremely certain they do not happen too frequently to an advocacy group that disagrees with the NYTimes Ed Page.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:11 AM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Added to the price discount controversy is this observation by the Times' own Clark Hoyt "that the ad appears to fly in the face of an internal advertising acceptability manual that says, "We do not accept opinion advertisements that are attacks of a personal nature."

Posted by: johngalt at September 24, 2007 3:12 PM

August 22, 2007

T-N-RRRRRRRRR!

TNR has broken its silence on the Scott Beauchamp contretemps. Jonathan Chait writes a hit piece on William Kristol:

Kristol's sensibility is perfectly summed up in one representative passage from a recent issue. The topic was The New Republic's decision to publish an essay by Scott Beauchamp, an American soldier serving in Iraq, detailing some repugnant acts he said he and his comrades committed. Legitimate questions have been raised about this essay's veracity. (We've been publishing updates on our continuing efforts to get answers to them at tnr.com.) But Kristol rushed past these questions, immediately declaring the piece a "fiction." Offering up his interpretation of why tnr would publish such slanders, he concluded, in an editorial titled, "They Don't Really Support the Troops":

How dare he expose our making s**t up to advance our political agenda! Read the whole thing, if you can. It seems they were just "edifying their readers."

Posted by John Kranz at 1:43 PM

August 21, 2007

T-N-AAAAAAAAARGH!

False Dawn.
by the Editors.
Why the U.S. Must act in Darfur -- right now!

Well, something sure is false. Say, when TNR supported the liberation of Iraq.

I have complained before that it is disingenuous for them to demand action in Sudan when they have abandoned the effort in Iraq. That's old news and seeking consistency of reason from the left is a loser's game.

BUT! After l'Affaire Beauchamp, you'd think they'd be concerned about another brave generation of idealistic American soldiers, marines and airmen becoming ensconced in the depravity that is war. Why Beauchamp turned into a complete asshole in a staging base. Surely we can't subject innocent troops to this.

I linked to The Nation this morning and told my emailer that at least they were honestly whacked. TNR's fall defies description.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:57 PM

August 8, 2007

Happy Birthday, Insty!

As the breast blogger said (I cannot quite find the link, sorry) "Glenn wouldn't link to me if I were on fire and was liveblogging it." AlexC has scored the coveted Instalanche on both ThreeSources and Pstupidonymous.

But I come to praise Glenn, not spam him in link-whoring messages. Seriously, his six years of prolific and intelligent production on Instapundit has altered our world as significantly as most politicians, media figures and business leaders.

He has kept his edge and his cool. I disagreed with him violently on immigration, but on about everything else he either hits me where I live, or gives me a new way to think it. I started reading Andrew Sullivan more than Professor Reynolds, but I think I've read every post of his for the last four years at least.

Well done, sir.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:08 PM

August 7, 2007

We've Always been at War with Eurasia!

LGF:

A search on The New Republic for ďShock TroopsĒ turns up no results; theyíve apparently removed Scott Beauchampís articles without a word.

A once proud magazine. Marty Peretz, come home, we need you.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:12 PM | Comments (2)
But mdmhvonpa thinks:

Who is this Scott Thomas fellow you speak of?

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at August 7, 2007 8:39 PM
But jk thinks:

It must've been a dream. I thought TNR hired the husband of one of its writers to do dispatches from Baghdad. He went all John Kerry and wrote of atrocities that were disproved.

I have to stop eating Thai food beofre bed...

Posted by: jk at August 8, 2007 10:39 AM

August 6, 2007

White Kossaks

Trouble in Kos land: A By-lined story in the WaPo reports "A Diversity of Opinion, if Not Opinionators"

"It's mostly white. More male than female," says the former high school math and science teacher turned activist. "It's not very diverse."

There goes the open secret of the netroots, or those who make up the community of the Internet grass-roots movement.

For all the talk about the increasing influence of this growing group -- "We are a community . . . a movement . . . an institution," Cooper said in a speech Saturday night -- what gets scant attention is its demography.


I am not ready to concede that they have such great diversity of opinions either. Some think Bush is a fascist, some think he is the antichrist?

Posted by John Kranz at 11:40 AM

Will Somebody Please Tell Ann and me

(And I'm totally surprised to read that there was another debate. I am constantly paying attention to the news and want to watch all the debates, yet I knew nothing of this one. How do they expect normal people to notice?)
That's Ann Althouse, after celebrating a few good GOP lines from yesterday's debate.

I, too, found out there was a debate ex post facto, as it were. I have missed two Democratic debates and one Republican. Like Althouse, I consider myself pretty well tuned into politics. Can't they put ads on beer cans or something?

Posted by John Kranz at 10:11 AM

NYTimes Headline

Bush Signs Law to Widen Legal Reach for Wiretapping

I suppose that's accurate, it seems it could have been worded differently.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:00 AM | Comments (1)
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

At least they acknowledge that its a LEGAL reach for a change.

Usual NYT stuff is "W=1984"

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at August 7, 2007 9:59 AM

August 5, 2007

The Blame Game

Terri at I Think ^(Link) Therefore I Err, gets the segue prize today (It is unfortunately not a Segue) for her post The Blame Game: She ties the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Mark Steyn, Senator John McCain, a reporter for the Arab News, and Senator John Edwards into a single post. Kids, don't try this at home.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:43 AM | Comments (1)
But Terri thinks:

Truly - it's an honor!
I'd like to thank today's news sources for making the post so easy to write that I actually posted on a Sunday!
And thank you of course to the academy at Three Sources without which I would still be humble.

Posted by: Terri at August 5, 2007 12:03 PM

August 2, 2007

TNR Stands by Story

"Kuwait, Iraq -- one of those sandy, hot countries..."

The New Republic has completed its review of the "Scott Thomas: Shock Troops" story and has found only one error. The mess hall where the diarist claims to have personally mocked a woman who was disfigured with war wounds was in Kuwait, not in Iraq. "We sincerely regret this mistake."

The manufacturer of the Bradley vehicle says it is agile enough to hit a dog, so the story of a US military professional who routinely risks his life, civilians and the crew for sadism stands.

No doubt it could be true. I still find it instructive that TNR can find little space for military victories, heroic exploits, or the overwhelming kindness shown by soldiers and contractors, yet they can make space for a column disparaging the troops. At least the story has a happy ending:

Although we place great weight on the corroborations we have received, we wished to know more. But, late last week, the Army began its own investigation, short-circuiting our efforts. Beauchamp had his cell-phone and computer taken away and is currently unable to speak to even his family. His fellow soldiers no longer feel comfortable communicating with reporters. If further substantive information comes to light, TNR will, of course, share it with you.

Couldn't happen to a nicer guy...

UPDATE: Dean Barnett, who has really owned this story, provides a more thorough and harsher reaction to the TNR defense.

UPDATE II: ThreeSources friend Perry is not buying it.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:23 PM

July 30, 2007

Long Tail in Accuracy

Mickey Kaus makes an interesting point. Print editors introduce ambiguity and error when they edit a piece to fit in a restricted space.

We don't kill no widows in these parts: Note to NYT's Andrew Adam Newman: That's my quote, buddy--which explains why Steven den Beste, to whom you attribute it, had those two little marks on either end.... P.S. This is the classic sort of error usually introduced by an editor trying to save space. Print editors do have to save space. But web editors don't. That's a major, unremarked virtue of blogs over newspapers when it comes to the newspaper's alleged unique selling proposition: accuracy. In fact, the need to fit copy to a limited space is a powerful error-creating machine in both dailies and magazines. Harried print editors compress, and get it wrong. Or they fool around trying to simplify attribution and get it wrong. Or they guiltlessly edit quotes within quotation marks and (by definition) get them wrong. ... In cyberspace,, if it takes one more line to get it right, you can take one more line. I haven't killed a widow in so long I've forgotten what it feels like.

People look at the "demand-side" of The Long Tail. Maybe it is the business I am in, but I am more intrigued by what enables it.

The move from scarcity to abundance is the foundation of Long Tail businesses. Wal*Mart has to fight scarcity of shelf space, as does the video store. Amazon, iTunes, and Netflix have an abundance of (virtual) shelf space and can pursue long tail strategies. The blogger likewise has an abundance of column inches.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:40 PM

July 26, 2007

I Can't Even Cancel

Sadly, I let my TNR digital subscription lapse a few months ago. They booted the price up a bit and I was going back and forth whether I would renew. It has lost some of its luster after Peter Beinart left, and the loonies are getting many more column inches than they used to.

Now that "Scott Thomas" has outed himself, I wish my subscription were current. I would love to cancel in high dudgeon. We have not discussed it at ThreeSources, but I bet you've all followed the story. The pseudonymous Thomas wrote "anecdotal diaries" of life in Iraq as an American soldier. In his stories, he and his compatriots disrespected Iraqis and acted dishonorably and unprofessionally. He claimed that he himself had cruelly insulted a woman who had been disfigured by an IED. His friends destroyed infrastructure in their Bradley fighting vehicles and always swerved to kill dogs. He didn't get to "Gengis Khan," but it was only a matter of time.

Now that many military bloggers have disputed his tales, he takes to the TNR blog to out himself and defend his fellow soldiers against charges that they are -- it gets pretty weird here -- charges that they are honorable and decent. It seems those who say the military is not loaded with psychopaths and sadists are chickenhawks.

It's been maddening, to say the least, to see the plausibility of events that I witnessed questioned by people who have never served in Iraq. I was initially reluctant to take the time out of my already insane schedule fighting an actual war in order to play some role in an ideological battle that I never wanted to join. That being said, my character, my experiences, and those of my comrades in arms have been called into question, and I believe that it is important to stand by my writing under my real name.

We are too psychotic sadists, dammit! How dare you question my lack of patriotism!

Beauchamp/Thomas is a Private and he may have actually done or seen some of the unprofessional incidents he describes, though I suspect some serious hyperbole. Most telling is that TNR -- the least moonbatty of Democratic mags -- chooses to represent our brave men and women by this cowardly example. The commenters on The Plank are all rallying around Beauchamp and ridiculing those who have dared question his perfidy.

UPDATE: Hugh Hewitt and Dean Barnett have covered this well. Hugh links to a Wikipedia entry on TNR "controversies."

Posted by John Kranz at 1:21 PM | Comments (2)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

All right, now that he's outed himself...

Court-martial the little **** for whatever he claimed to do, which is what should have been done to John Kerry after his Congressional testimony in the 1970s.

If his claims are not true, then he's lying, and worse, lying about his fellow soldiers. That's "conduct unbecoming." A CO will take issue either way with troops insulting a disfigured contractor, or one of his troops lying about the others doing it.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at July 26, 2007 5:10 PM
But jk thinks:

Absolutely right.

Posted by: jk at July 26, 2007 5:13 PM

July 18, 2007

Bias?

Bias? At the A.P.?

It was good to, finally, see an announcement of the captured al Qaida leader. In a bylined story for the AP, Robert Reid opens right out of Journalism 101:

BAGHDAD - The U.S. command announced on Wednesday the arrest of an al-Qaida leader it said served as the link between the organization's command in Iraq and Osama bin Laden's inner circle, enabling it to wield considerable influence over the Iraqi group.

Okay, enough news. Let's get to the real story -- the perfidy of the Bush Administration:
The announcement was made as the White House steps up efforts to link the war in Iraq to the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks, with a growing number of Americans opposing the Iraq conflict. Some independent analysts question the extent of al-Qaida's role in Iraq.

I think these guys are just having these military successes to fuel their propaganda machine. Good thing the AP is not going to let them get away with it!

Posted by John Kranz at 4:59 PM

July 13, 2007

The Torch Has Been Passed

I made a formal and overly dramatic dissolution of my punditry ties with Peggy Noonan on June 1.

One of the things I meant to say in that post was that a reasonable comparison of Peggy Noonan with "Potomac Watch" author Kimberly Strassel would show that the torch has been passed. Peggy Noonan's "What I Saw at the Revolution" had a profound effect on me and did much to make me the partisan hack that I am today. After 9/11, her columns, collected in "A Heart, a Cross, and a Flag," were a good forum for her powerful and romantic writing.

But I dare you to compare the two today (is it sexist for me to single out two blonde women writers?) and make a credible claim that they belong on the same ed page. Both are on the free site today, letís compare.

Kim writes a tightly thought and constructed column about campaign finance reform, and the irony of its deleterious effect on Senator McCain's Presidential campaign. I'd use it as a textbook example of a great column.
State your premise:

John McCain's campaign fell into disarray this week, kicked off by the news it had raised a scant $24 million so far. Mark these money woes down to any number of problems, but don't entirely discount the McCain-Feingold effect.

Acknowledge contrary indicators:
Let's stipulate that most of the good senator's troubles stem from high-profile policy disagreements he's had with his own base. He's tweaked noses on global warming and slapped faces on immigration. His admirable decision to stand strong on Iraq has been undermined by his tendency to stand weak on national security issues such as interrogations and enemy combatants. And economic conservatives just don't trust a guy who won't admit that cutting taxes is good.

She then seriously discusses the importance of the topic to key constituent groups and the political implications. Then, she compares beliefs of McCain Feingold from other top tier candidates, before a strong conclusion:
Whatever the effect, Mr. McCain must surely be considering the irony of his current situation. Mitt Romney has also burned through money quickly, and in theory should be looking at a low bank balance. But Mr. Romney can write himself a check at any time--one of the few things McCain-Feingold allows.

Mr. McCain might well have some billionaire supporters who'd be only too happy to give him a big financial boost at this crucial time, though they won't be allowed to thanks to finance restrictions. The senator has family money, though it's not clear he'd tap that to keep his bid running. For now, he's stuck raising it the hard way, under a system that much of the GOP hates.


Succinct, informative, cohesive. If I taught a class, I'd bring this in as an example.

Our Margaret, on the other hand, has a good little cry, because that mean old President Bush has the temerity to be jocular in a press conference when SHE IS STILL SO ANGRY AT HIM! MEN!!!!

His stock answer is that of course he feels the sadness of the families who've lost someone in Iraq. And of course he must. Beyond that his good humor seems to me disorienting, and strange.

In arguing for the right path as he sees it, the president more and more claims for himself virtues that the other side, by inference, lacks. He is "idealistic"; those who oppose him are, apparently, lacking in ideals. He makes his decisions "based on principle," unlike his critics, who are ever watchful of the polls. He is steadfast, brave, he believes "freedom isn't just for Americans" but has "universal . . . applications," unlike those selfish, isolationist types who oppose him.


Noonan points out that we cannot fire the President right now (a point Cindy Sheehan made on Kudlow & Company last night) but she knows we all want to. She talks to a rock-ribbed-republican in Georgia who doesn't believe the President. A Rock ribbed republican! She and Mrs. Rock Rib both grit their teeth when the President is on.
Americans can't fire the president right now, so they're waiting it out. They can tell a pollster how they feel, and they do, and they can tell friends, and they do that too. They also watch the news conference, and grit their teeth a bit.

Methinks it is time to, perhaps, fire Ms. Noonan.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:01 PM

July 6, 2007

Wage growth falls 0.1%; poor, minorities hardest hit

Some pretty good jobs numbers today -- that is, unless you are reading them in the New York Times:

Wage gains for most Americans last month were slow, and are most likely still trailing inflation. Compared with June 2006, average hourly earnings for workers in nonmanagement jobs increased 3.9 percent, to $17.38, less than the 4 percent advance in May.

Ahh yes, the heady, halcyon days of last monthwhen wage growth was 4.0% instead of 3.9 -- you can just feel the stagnation in the air.

Hat-tip: Don Luskin, who points out "according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, inflation is running at 2.7%. How is it that a 3.9% wage increase is "trailing" 2.7% inflation?"

Posted by John Kranz at 3:26 PM

June 25, 2007

Media Complicity

Roger Simon has a superb post on the media's deafening silence when their time came to defend Salman Rushdie against what Simon calls "enemies of the Enlightenment." Simon refers to a quote from Glenn Reynolds that bothered me in the same and a different way. Over the weekend Professor Reynolds said:

"Frankly, I think the best argument for electing a Democrat as President is that as long as a Republican is in office the media powers-that-be will refuse to condemn even the worst atrocities on the part of Islamists, for fear of helping the real enemy in the White House."

That upset Simon and me as lovers of freedom -- and further upset me as a partisan hack. Must we really put Senator Obama in the White House to nationalize medicine in the name of freedom? That's a level of Pragmatism I'm not ready to try.

Simon continues to darkly -- but not unconvincingly -- claim that the Iraq War was doomed because of media bias, exacerbated by administration partisanship.

The same prejudices that Rutten describes in his Rushdie article are the ones that have seriously undermined the possibility of victory for democracy in Iraq. A media that could call obvious fascists and religious fascists "insurgents" (a term once reserved for Pancho Villa) in the interest of "objectivity" encouraged a specious atmosphere of moral equivalence to democracy from the start. Whether this was conscious or unconscious is beside the point. Whatever it was, our enemies, the enemies of the Enlightenment, seized on it for propaganda purposes and continue to do so. (Note that in the new Daniel Pearl movie, Pearl's beheading is not even shown - that was praised as tasteful by Roger Ebert.) And, as everyone knows, the playing field of asymmetrical war is the media, far more than the battlefield. Only in the world of public opinion can we be defeated.

Dark days. Simon quotes Arthur Miller and it's not out of place.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:55 AM

Banned by PBS, Bumped by FOX

Warning: an angry rant follows. Those seeking polite, well reasoned commentary should click over to Michelle Malkin or Anne Coulter or something.

Will somebody please tell me what lottery we lost? Right of center folk get the likes of Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh; the crown jewel is FOXNews. My Boulder County compatriots get NPR, PBS and, well, everything else.

I HATE FOX NEWS! I like Brit Hume's show; I record it every day and watch it three or four times a week. I watch "Beltway Boys" and the "Journal Editorial Report" every week, and I watch Chris Wallace's Fox New Sunday every week. It runs on FOX Network but it seems fair to credit FOXNews with its production.

EVERY OTHER MINUTE IS PURE CRAP.

I accepted this Faustian bargain and chose to watch the shows I like. That's the deal with television. I don't have to watch "Two and a Half Men" because the same network shows the Broncos. I always chuckle that the most "conservative" show on TV has got to be Larry Kudlow's "Kudlow & Company" on CNBC. But FOX pre-empted all my shows this weekend, because 23 hours of tabloid news is not enough for them some days.

My heart goes out to the friends and the family of the pregnant woman in Ohio who was abducted and killed. I don't mean to minimize the tragedy in any way. It's a horrible crime; I certainly hope the perpetrators are found and punished. Beyond that, I don't need to know or care to know the names and the details. I cannot believe the family wants Geraldo, Greta, and me in their living room.

Beltway Boys was pre-empted at 4PM Mountain. I'm used to this and know I can try to record it again at 9:30 after WSJ Editorial Report. Surprise! They were still yapping through both of those. I found and recorded another replay at 4AM and, mirabile dictu, it ran.

I am ranting. It's only a TV show. What really got me was that I had also recorded "Muslims Against Jihad," which PBS had spiked for reasons many thought were PC and appeasement of victim groups. FOX didn't mind hyping the show:

Tune in this weekend, as FOX News Channel presents the documentary the Public Broadcasting System didn't want you to see.

It's a film about the difference between moderate Muslims and the radicals who want to kill us. It asks where are the moderate Muslims and why aren't they speaking out against the jihadists? And it was financed with $675,000 of taxpayers' money.


Of course, that would have meant that FOX would have HAD TO STOP TALKING ABOUT THE ATTRACTIVE, WHITE, MURDER VICTIM FOR 90 MINUTES. Even at one in the morning (three Eastern), we couldn't have that. So I recorded an hour and a half of "Breaking News" that was at least 12 hours old.

FOX.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:00 AM | Comments (4)
But AlexC thinks:

Congratulations, you too have discovered that FoxNews is crap.

Not for it's "conservative" bias, but for the same reason all 24 hour news is crap.

They have a day to fill... and sometimes there isn't that much going on.

... that and they program based on people tuning in and out throughout the day... not actually watching it all day long. (though some do)

Posted by: AlexC at June 25, 2007 1:46 PM
But jk thinks:

A good friend of this blog has assured me in private that Greta Van Susteren has all those women locked up in her basement.

In FOX's defense, I like the headline on the SCOTUS free speach decision: "Court Snuffs Out 'Bong Hits'"

Posted by: jk at June 25, 2007 2:47 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Would you believe that when I tuned in to FNC this morning I was surprised to learn that the woman's body had been found - on SATURDAY? Yes, I actually managed to avoid the breaking news. I spent Friday through Sunday baling and stacking 1500 bales of hay. The only news I got was between innings of Rockies games on the radio. (Speaking of which, can we have the Yankees back? Those Blue Jays and their plastic grass and plastic dirt really jacked with the Rox.)

I watched FNC when it was new. It was fresh. It was awesome. Now, it's CNN with a slightly traditional tone, although Bill Hemmer's arrival from CNN was an ominous sign. I still think he's a plant.

Posted by: johngalt at June 25, 2007 3:24 PM
But Terri thinks:

I'm with AlexC. 24 hours of news shows for maybe 2 hours of actual "Headline News" is too much!
I think the last time I watched news on TV was to get pictures during Katrina.

Posted by: Terri at June 26, 2007 12:06 AM

June 21, 2007

How About a Short Krugman ETF

I'm not making fun of Paul Krugman's height (blog friend Perry Eidlebus tells Don Luskin that he is lying when he claims to be 5' 7"). I am making fun of his poor predictions. Both Luskin and Larry Kudlow celebrate the four year anniversary of his claim that "In short, the current surge in stocks looks like another bubble, one that will eventually burst."

Luskin's reply is more colorful, so I will use it:

Brilliant. Just f***ing brilliant. The total return to the S&P 500 since then has been about 66%, including dividends. Gee -- I sure wish I'd sold everything four years ago like Krugman said to do.

He seems wrong with sufficient frequency that I'd like to start a fund that would do the opposite of what he says. Users could short Krugman easily and I could deduct TimesSelect from my taxes.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:06 PM | Comments (3)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

"You lied."

"I exaggerated."

I didn't exactly say he lied, or did I, but standing on the same stage, I definitely seemed taller. Still, isn't Krugman a bit old to be thinking so childishly about it? Short stature is something you can't do anything about, but your weight is completely under your control except in exceptional medical circumstances.

BTW, the night I met Krugman was when I got him to autograph a copy of his book, my gift to a good friend. Oh, the relish in my reply, after he asked my friend's name. "Don Luskin."

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at June 22, 2007 2:58 PM
But jk thinks:

ROFLMAO -- I would've loved to have seen that.

Posted by: jk at June 22, 2007 3:37 PM
But jk thinks:

"Lied" might be a little strong. Luskin quotes your letter as:

You're right, that has to be with elevator shoes. When I met him at that Social Security debate, he definitely seemed shorter than I, and I'm 5'5". Granted, I don't know for certain, but like with all things Krugman, we should automatically be skeptical. His track record is all about purporting things to be true, which the rest of us counter with actual facts.

Exactly. Now, MoDo would've gotten the benefit of the doubt.

Posted by: jk at June 22, 2007 3:54 PM

June 11, 2007

Arlen Specter is now "Top Republican"

The AP Headline reads "Top Republican to vote against Gonzales"

Leader McConnell? No, following the link I found out that Senator Arlen Specter is the top Republican. Well, he is the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee. I fear it's gone to his head. He talks about himself in the third person now:

"If you ask Arlen Specter, do I have confidence in Attorney General Gonzales, the answer is a resounding no," Specter said during a news conference in Philadelphia. "I'm going to vote that I have no confidence in Attorney General Gonzales."

If you ask jk, that's never a good sign.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:23 PM | Comments (1)
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

He's a "Top Republican" to the MSM world because that godd***ed RINO thinks like a good little Demo-Socialist!

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at June 11, 2007 8:31 PM

May 31, 2007

Dueling Headlines

AP goes with "Economy has worst growth since 2002"

WASHINGTON - The economy nearly stalled in the first quarter with growth slowing to a pace of just 0.6 percent. That was the worst three-month showing in over four years.

But I'm tempted to go with "Economy Grows for 23 consecutive Quarters." Yeah, that's Pollyanna on steroids, but once you get past the lede, the news is not so bad:
[..] fewer people signed up for unemployment benefits last week. New filings dropped by 4,000 to 310,000. That suggests the employment climate is weathering well the economy's sluggish spell.

[...] construction spending edged up by 0.1 percent in April, down from a 0.6 percent gain in the previous month. Spending by private builders on nonresidential projects and spending by the government on big projects each climbed to all time highs in April but that strength was tempered by continued weakness in residential construction.

In the GDP report, many economists believe the first quarter will be the low point for this year. They expect growth will improve but still be sluggish.

[...] Investment in home building was cut by 15.4 percent, on an annualized basis, in the first quarter. However, that wasn't as deep a cut as the 17 percent annualized drop initally [sic] estimated. And, it wasn't as severe as the 19.8 percent annualized drop seen in the final quarter of last year.

[...] Consumers boosted their spending by a 4.4 percent growth rate in the first quarter, the most in a year. Consumer spending accounts for a major chunk of economic activity.

[...] Companies profits gained a bit of ground in the first quarter. One measure showed after tax profits rising by 1 percent, up from 0.8 percent in the fourth quarter.


Not mentioned were the record closes for the DJIA, S&P 500 and Russel2K.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:31 AM

May 22, 2007

NYTimes: Right on Gouging

Surprised?

The Grey Lady gets bashed enough around here, one must remember that it really is a great newspaper. Today, they're correct on "price gouging" and appropriately dismissive of anti-gouging legislation.

It goes without saying that gasoline retailers and oil companies will seek to maximize their profit, which usually means charging the highest price markets can bear.

But is that price gouging?

Because the demand for gasoline is what economists call inelastic, which means that people cannot quickly reduce their consumption when prices rise sharply, abrupt supply shortages lead to steep price increases without any immediate decline in sales.

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