First things first: Bill Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard, is a worthless fuck who doesn’t matter. Nonetheless, he does a pretty good — though inadvertent — job of framing the political battleground in the YouTube below. Here’s Kristol’s bet, in a nutshell: that you, dear reader, dear citizen, are too stupid to allow yourselves or anyone else the latitude to question or critically reflect on packages of “truth” handed down from decades past — handed down by people who had it handed down to them by people with no more divine authority to judge such matters than you have. Case in point: the notion that Lincoln was a great president is the biggest lie in all of American history; and Paul is precisely correct that a war between States was wholly unnecessary to overcome institutionalized slavery. In terms of sheer destruction, both in terms of American lives (650 thousand) and in relieving the federal government of most of its practical limitations from then on, Lincoln was the worst president by large measure. There is a very good reason why Lincoln is so celebrated by the State. While it wasn’t he who made the all-powerful, all-encompassing state possible, it’s he…
Archives for December 2007
Hey; let’s all sing along, folks. After that link, you know you want to. So c’mon! I’ll start; …O beautiful….here we go, everyone… O beautiful for spacious skies, For amber waves of grain, For purple mountain majesties Above the fruited plain! America! America! God shed His grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea! O beautiful for pilgrim feet Whose stern impassion’d stress A thoroughfare for freedom beat Across the wilderness. America! America! God mend thine ev’ry flaw, Confirm thy soul in self-control, Thy liberty in law. O beautiful for heroes prov’d In liberating strife, Who more than self their country loved, And mercy more than life. America! America! May God thy gold refine Till all success be nobleness, And ev’ry gain divine. O beautiful for patriot dream That sees beyond the years Thine alabaster cities gleam Undimmed by human tears. America! America! God shed His grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea. (Rockwell linked that)
The American Conservative cover. Excellent. By strange coincidence, I followed a lot of what this supreme mutherfucker was up to as a U.S. Attorney. You can look into it, and you can disagree, but this is the most dangerous candidate in the race. It’s not close. (Via Rockwell)
(Ron Paul tells Neil Cavuto to Fuck Off. Well, he might as well have. Lovely.)
John Derbyshire. Must read.
Yea, I’ve been neglecting the blog lately. Wait until next week when I’m at the cabin for the duration. I. Can. Not. Wait. Nonetheless, I must. By the way, does anyone else think that Cast Away with Tom Hanks is just a terrific film? I caught about the last 2/3 of it last night, just milling about the remote (I’ve seen the whole thing before). There are subtle things I like about it, which mostly reduce to Hanks’ skillful acting upon his return to the world. Without saying it, he artfully demonstrates the wondrous, unappreciated value of civilization in a material context; its many wonders. Did you get that? Those who’d like to send us back to caves ought to watch that about a dozen times. Well, I think it’s brilliant. Nods to Zemeckis as well. He did Contact, too. Another fave. Anyway, back to the subject at hand. Take particular note of the historical references to WWs I and II toward the end. In terms of depth, nobody is in Paul’s league. Not even close.
Can you imagine a better illustration?
Of the number of articles I’ve read on Ron Paul’s allure, this is by far (to me) the one that does the best job of it (Yea: I can nit & pick with the best of ’em). I’d call it rather pure and honest journalism. It’s sad in only one respect: It’s from Mother Jones. Good for them; shame on many, many others. It’s rather long, two pages, and worth every minute. Don’t miss the “libertarian Theology” in the sidebar on page two. If nothing else, it tells you that the author has some depth on this subject.
My vehicle happens to be registered to my company, which gets a lot of mail. And so, somehow the registration renewal got misplaced, and hence, didn’t get paid and renewed by the Oct 16 deadline. Alright; so I’m going to get smacked with a late fee. Fine. OK, this isn’t about the general illegitimacy of the state, but let’s just figure you’d pay something equivalent to an annual vehicle registration in some form or another anyway. But would you pay a 60% late charge, or would the company end up being burned to the ground by outraged customers? Yep, as if $383 for a year’s “registration” isn’t already ridiculous (get over it: it’s just another euphemism for a “tax,” itself an euphemism for robbery). Now they impose and additional $222 for a “late fee,” which is just an excuse to steal even more — at loan-shark rates that’d make Corleone blush. So, a late $383 “registration” is now a $605 “registration,” for a single year’s operation in this “great state.” You know, I might get a bit pissed at a 10% late fee, but it’d be mostly at myself for letting it slide: precisely the reasonable justification for a late…
Endorses Ron Paul.
Via Billy, this is just a roar and a half. It starts off quick. I have finally decided to take the plunge. Last night I upgraded my Vista desktop machine to Windows XP, and this afternoon I will be doing the same to my laptop. Good for him. I respect and admire Bill Gates; and what his productive efforts have done for the world should never be taken away or diminished — but goddammit! People are just not going to put up with this crap, and the more used to using computers people get, the less tolerant they are going to be with crap that doesn’t work right. I was discussing this last night with some very smart tech people at a Christmas party at the home of a hardware engineer who’s responsible for in excess of a dozen high-tech patents, mostly in the video space (he is largely responsible for the first mini high-res video screen on the iPod several years back). Think about it. Back in the late 80s and early 90s, everyone thought Apple was insane to not open up their hardware, or at least allow their OS to run on other open hardware. The “IBM” PC…
This one could go under the category of “‘Fair & Balanced'” (note the quote within quotes).
This would go under the category of “least surprising news item of the day,” if I had one.
As of now, about 2pm EST, donations are running at a rate that would bring in an excess of $6-7 million, today. I have two windows up, side-by-side, with today’s graphs (which will be current day and not 12/16 after today) on one, alongside Nov 5th’s graphs on another. Most of the comparisons should be visually straightforward. Currently, donations are running about $800,000 ahead of same time 11/5, and it’s still widening. Interestingly, once the donation slope was stable, by about 12pm on 11/5, the slope remained remarkably consistent. Today’s slope (so far) has established itself over the same period but is much steeper, as is plain to see. The most interesting chart to me is the “Donation Rate, in $1000 per hour.” On 11/5 it established a rate of 200 $1,000/hr donations (consolidated from however many individual donations it takes, of course) and danced back & forth around that level for the remainder of the day. Accounting for the dip in the early hours, it comes out to about 175 X $1,000 X 24 = $4.2 million, which is just about what was raised. For today, it seems to be stabilizing at around 300, so if we knock that…
It begins tonight. Standing now at a bit over $11.5 million for the quarter, you can follow along to see how that thermometer climbs throughout the day of December 16th. I still think $10 million is possible. I’ll be taking a part, as I did on November 5th. That said, believe it or not, I can’t really dispute Billy’s admonition that Ron Paul get out of government and find honest work. On the other hand, there’s a Danneskjoldesque element to this I can’t help but support. At any rate, I’d have to concede that if one were to commit to working within the system to try and change it, Paul has done an admirable job marked by integrity to his stated oaths. Perhaps others would do it differently but I’m convinced he’s always done as best as he could and his heart is clearly in the right place. Here’s something produced by a Dutch guy who’d like you to take a look at the Boston Tea Party.
Here’s another one for Billy’s oft referred to description of hell: the impossibility of reason. Note that it’s the concept of “impossibility” that’s operative. When something so elemental to the essential essence of humanity becomes impossible, well, he said it: that’s truly a description of hell. An elementary student in Marion County was arrested Thursday after school officials found her cutting food during lunch with a knife that she brought from home, police said. The 10-year-old girl, a student at Sunrise Elementary School in Ocala, was charged possession of a weapon on school property, which is a felony. “Police said.” Charged with a felony for, I guess, acting with the civility to cut her food in a modern, man-made manner; rather than, I suppose, acting in the inferior god-made manner of gnawing it off the bone with with claws & teeth. But, you know: the law’s the law, right? Isn’t that what you always say? Is that not what you mean, then? If the law is the law — “that simple” — doesn’t it mean that, ultimately, “when push comes to shove,” reason is impossible? Should you beat your way out of that logical wet paper sack to conclude that…
They did it. In the space of about a month, a bunch of folks completely independent of Ron Paul’s campaign raised the quarter million dollars start-up capital required to literally get “The Ron Paul Blimp” off the ground. You know, there’s very good reasons why there’s no similarly organized “National Health Care Blimp,” “Save Social Security Blimp,” “For Our Children’s Future Blimp,” or any other such Robin Hood spectacle. Can you extrapolate the premises of that contrast?
Alright, then. Over at the gym, after the workout, and every teevee is tuned into the newest steroid scare. Wall to wall. I call it that — “scare” — because, for one, I don’t care about it — so you’re welcome to count that in your assessment of my assessment. For another, it smells so much to me like any other pedestrian “crisis” that’s simply going through the routine they need to go through until people, en masse, call for regulatory oversight, which is what they wanted in the first place — of course. I don’t care about it, but I’m educated about it. And that’s real science and real critical analysis Art is enjoining to the hysteria. But let me summarize, and this would go under the category, if I had one, of “perception is reality.” First of all, we’re talking about massive selection bias and causality problems. Athletes win at stuff all the time — that’s kinda the point. When a winner is subsequently found to have used steroids, it’s fait accompli determined that the steroids were the cause. But of course, any rational, logical analysis demands a comparison against all the steroid users who lost. DUH! And…
One thing that may have become clear during those conflicts was that, if criminal prosecution was controlled by the crown, the King’s friends could get away with murder. – David D. Friedman, Law’s Order, chapter 17 It certainly seems intuitively clear, yet, “we the people” seem nevertheless to persist in the illusion that “officials” and “authorities” are somehow endowed with a special sense and practice of honesty, integrity, and objectivity that we ourselves don’t even imagine pertains to humanity in general. Even in the face of mounting evidence.
It’s sumthin’ when the world’s storyteller-in-chief has to come out against the telling of stories he apparently finds even more far fetched than the ones he tells. Pope Benedict XVI has launched a surprise attack on climate change prophets of doom, warning them that any solutions to global warming must be based on firm evidence and not on dubious ideology. The leader of more than a billion Roman Catholics suggested that fears over man-made emissions melting the ice caps and causing a wave of unprecedented disasters were nothing more than scare-mongering. Of course, it could be seen as just coming out against a competing faith. They both have all the essential elements: original sin, certain damnation, and a path to salvation. (link: rockwell)