Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Barney's footprints are all over the housing collapse and bank bailouts


Could you write a novel featuring hilarious, but pathetic characters?

A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole, is a book filled with marvelously hilarious characters in New Orleans. The characters are well-developed, and continue to be integral to the story all the way to the end.

One of my favorite characters is a policeman named Mancuso. Mancuso's sergeant seems to enjoy abusing Mancuso. He demands that Mancuso bring in "suspicious characters." Mancuso tries his best, but continually fails in this endeavor. The sergeant makes Mancuso dress up in various costumes designed to attract suspicious characters. Finally, the frustrated sergeant requires Mancuso to sequester himself in a toilet stall in the bus depot bathroom until he makes an arrest of a suspicious character. While he does not succeed in catching anything but pneumonia in his days in the toilet stall, Mancuso does succeed in becoming the hero of the story by, well, I guess I won't reveal this in case you want to read the book.

I wonder what it would be like to try to write a book like that one. Today I met a guy who was purchasing nicotine gum or tablets. I remarked to him how expensive they were. He agreed and said he was trying to calculate whether to buy the package with 50 tablets or the one with 100. He decided on the latter, because he said that he was about "to go off the wagon." He then went on to tell me that he had not slept in 14 nights. When I asked him what line of work he is in, he said he does not work, because he had recently been in a car accident in which his car hit three other cars, one of which was being carjacked, and "you can't trust the police."

This remark caused me to look at the man more carefully. He wore dark sunglasses, was about 6'3" and skinny as a rail. His Adam's apple protruded significantly from his neck. The more we talked, the more I realized I had my first character for my own version of The Confederacy of Dunces. Apparently the police investigation of the car accident did not go well for our man in the sunglasses. "The police are only in it for the money," he informed me. "It's your word against theirs."

Actually, I don't think I could write a novel featuring pathetic characters, because I feel a sadness when I realize fellow human beings are messing up their lives. That doesn't preclude me from realizing the humor and tremendous writing talent of an author such as John Kennedy Toole. But the fact remains that God gave each of us unique talents and is available to help each of us to realize those talents. I don't like to give up on fellow humans, even when they devolve to absurd levels.

One standard for them; another for the rest of us!

Yesterday the Denver Post ran a story by three reporters for Bloomberg News. The story is that Bloomberg News won a Freedom of Information lawsuit against the Federal Reserve and the biggest banks, and obtained 29,000 pages of Fed documents and records of more than 21,000 bank transactions. The Fed never disclosed to lawmakers these transactions. The six biggest U.S. banks secretly borrowed $460 billion dollars from the Fed. This does not include the $160 billion dollars these same banks got from TARP funds. The bankers also did not disclose the loans to their shareholders. The banks reaped an estimated $13 billion dollars in income from the Fed's below-market interest rates. Read more here:

Now let's go to this story. Chase Bank in Atlanta tried to throw out of her house a 103-year-old woman and her 83-year-old daughter this week. Kudos to the Sheriff Deputies, who refused to move the frail woman out on the street. Video and story here:

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Explosions rocking Iran

Several blogs are reporting more explosions rocking Iran. Here is one:

Ayers outs Obama

Did domestic terrorist Bill Ayers launch Barack Obama's political career with a fundraiser at Ayers' house? The Obama campaign said no three years ago. Last month Ayres said, yes. The October, 2011 video of Ayers is here:

Now the question is: will the Republicans run this video against candidate Obama in the 2012 election season?

Goodbye, Herman Cain

So the news tonight is that a woman in Georgia has announced that she had a thirteen year affair with Herman Cain. Goodbye, Herman. Now what? Anyone know what Sarah Palin is doing?

Don't say it, if it's a lie!"

Tonight I stopped at the grocery store and the library before heading home. At both of those places there were petition-gatherers hawking legalization of marijuana. At the library I decided to talk to the man hawking the petition. I told him I was not in favor of giving our citizens another legal way to be dependent on a drug, like we have done with cigarettes and alcohol. I just don't want to lend them a hand in this particular cause. The man said, "People are going to do it anyway, so we might as well collect the taxes. It's better than throwing them in jail." I challenged him on that one, asking if jailing people for marijuana use is really happening in Colorado. He said, "No, not in Colorado." I told him, "Then don't use that lie in your argument!"

Monday, November 28, 2011

Let's get on with it!

No sooner had we heard about hydraulic fracturing, than now we hear about the use of propane gel instead of water to crack open rocks and release the oil reserves in North America:

Givng up on white voters who lack college brainwashing

Thomas B. Edsall writes in the New York Times an interesting analysis of Democratic strategy for the 2012 election. Realizing that they have lost the Reagan Democrats, white voters without a college brainwashing, the push now will be to form a coalition of Hispanics, Blacks, and college educated whites, "professors, artists, designers, editors, human resources managers, lawyers, librarians, social workers, teachers and therapists." Also, throw in single women according to James Carville. In 2010 Democrats lost working class whites 63 to 33.
The link:

They are the disease of which they proclaim themselves the cure."

Matthew Kaminski interviews economic historian Fred Siegel in today's Wall Street Journal. Siegel has been spending time in New York interviewing bankers and Occupiers. He finds the theater of the Occupy movement ironic in that the bankers and the Occupiers are "on the same side of the street politically. They're both in favor of big government!"
He links the liberalism of the 1960s, not any excess of the free market, to today's crisis. The Great Society put the state on growth hormones. Less widely appreciated, the era gave birth to a powerful new political force, the public-sector union. For the first time in American history there was an interest dedicated wholly to lobbying for a larger government and the taxes and debt to pay for it. "Wall Street makes money off the bonds that have to be floated to pay the public sector workers in New York."
In Mr. Siegel's estimation, only Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has tried the needed fix after last year's elections. "Part of the reason Walker has become such a lightning rod" is that he pushed "straight up, unambiguous structural reform." His move to restrict collective bargaining for state employees isn't as important, says Mr. Siegel, as ending the requirement that state workers pay union dues.

During the presidency of George W. Bush, the number of government workers who belong to a union surpassed the number of unionized private workers.
Government workers make up a growing share of the middle class. And perversely, says Mr. Siegel, unions can justifiably claim to defend the interests of the middle-class worker. "That's because the costs that they've imposed have driven out the private-sector middle class. They are the disease of which they proclaim themselves the cure."

The link:

"Noble intentions"

Is Barack Obama a good man? Here is what my fellow Coloradan Jeff Goldstein said on the day after Obama defeated McCain:
This “good man” was involved in ACORN blackmail schemes. With an attempt to fraudulently undermine the Second Amendment by gaming court rulings. He got rich off of schemes that led to the mortgage crisis — then stood by and let others fix it in order to keep his hands clean during the final stages of an election. He has thrown in with race hustlers,”reformers” who believe that domestic terrorism was a valid form of expression, odious foreign potentates –

There is nothing at all noble about praising a man and a party who reviles you simply because in doing so you appear noble. Jews have tried that. And it’s often ended with skeletons and ash, or the twisted wreckage of a bus in Tel Aviv.

In this case, it will end with more McCains — and so more Obamas and Reids and Pelosis and Olbermanns.

If that’s nobility, I’m not interested. Yes, Obama is my President. But that doesn’t mean I’m forced to forget all he’s done to get there — and all that’s been done on his behalf, either by the savage supporters who went after Joe the Plumber and Sarah Palin, or by the “objective media” that sold its soul for a shot at establishing the government it desired.

A good man?

A good politician, sure. A dedicated husband and father, yes. But a good man?

Sorry. But good men don’t lie, cheat, steal, and throw longtime supporters by the wayside just so they can rise to power — even if they’ve convinced themselves they’re doing so for some Greater Good.

Because the fact is, in this country, they’re not supposed to get to decide what that is. We are.

The rest is hubris.

Here is part of what Jeff said today about Obama and his EPA administrator Lisa Jackson:
A narcissistic, fiat-driven bureaucratic state relying on post-constitutional and ethos-driven emotive court rulings to re-structure the entire system of separation of powers and checks and balances in order to “fundamentally transform” a free market system into a command-and-control economy run by self-appointed technocrats, unelected “czars”, and would-be authoritarians willing to grant themselves dictatorial powers so long as they can cite their noble intentions

The link once again to Protein Wisdom, where you can find such superb writing every day:

Newt wins key New Hampshire endorsement, and praise from Bill Clinton

Newt Gingrich wins the endorsement of New Hampshire's largest newspaper, and challenges Obama to a series of unmoderated debates, telling Obama that he can even bring his teleprompters! One problem, though, Gingrich is winning praise from Bill Clinton, who says Gingrich is doing well, because he is "thinking!"
The link:

Egyptians voting today

Egyptians are turning out in large numbers today in the first day of voting on a new parliament. Here is an informative video.

A very scary scenario

Do you know about an electromagnetic pulse EMP attack? There is a good discussion of it, and how to defend against it, at The Foundry, the blog of The Heritage Foundation. The link is here:
The Protein Wisdom blog linked to it today:

Newt would be more "aggressive" in fighting the drug war

Classical Values is a blog written by a Republican who wishes marijuana were legal. The blogger there laments the fact that Newt Gingrich has risen to the top of the Republican presidential candidates, because Newt is for ramping up the war on drugs.

I think it is very sad that so many Americans are hooked on legal cigarettes and alcohol. Is it really in America's best interest to add more substances on which Americans can become legally dependent?

The link to Classical Values:

Freddy Mac, or Fannie Mae?

Barney Frank is resigning from Congress. Dennis Miller joked today that when people called in to the brothel operated in Barney Frank's house they used code words to indicate what kind of sex they wished to engage in. The code words were "Freddy Mac" and "Fannie Mae."
Read more here, if you care:
Update: Jeffro from the Poor Farm made a good correction to this post in the comments section: Barney boy is not resigning; he has just announced that he is not running for reelection. Either way, the country will be better off.
Update two: Jeff Goldstein notes that improperly-zoned gay brothels and those getting rich off of market collapses engineered by government, hardest hit:

Saturday, November 26, 2011

"Beyond human comprehension"


Update: In today's Denver Post Ed Quillen calls people who say birth begins at conception "zygote zealots:"

Globull warmists and Greenpeace

Here is another Ezra levant video. This time he skewers the global warmists and Greenpeace.


No pussy-footing with these two!

Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn discuss freedom of speech in Canada and President Obama's decision to keep us dependent on Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, instead of Canada and the U.S., for oil and natural gas.

Pakistan gets tough with the U.S.

Pakistan is not allowing these supply trucks to go into Afghanistan, and has demanded that the United States abandon an airbase within fifteen days, after a NATO strike killed Pakistanis.

Story and photo found here:

Update: Boinky posts this excerpt from a Strategy Page post on this story:
Since the border guards and paramilitary police in the tribal territory are recruited from the tribes, the Taliban can also recruit, bribe or coerce these troops to fire on NATO and Afghan forces. Border patrol bases are often used for this, and NATO air strikes and artillery will be used to support the NATO and Afghan ground troops that are under attack. Since Pakistan officially denies that their paramilitary forces often work for the Taliban, they declare that the casualties from NATO forces defending themselves are "unprovoked attacks on Pakistan." That fiction works for a while in the Pakistani media, but most Pakistanis know better.

The link:

Outer space versus deepest oceans

For many reasons I would rather explore outer space than the deepest ocean. Think of how cool it would be to dump a bag of chips in space and then float around eating them! If you tried doing that in water, the chips would get all soggy! Also, I'd like to play a game of baseball on the moon. The whole game would be in slow motion! Doesn't this sound better than looking at weird fish and being splashed by giant tsunamis?
By Greg Agard, age ten

Thursday, November 24, 2011

"It is requested that everyone maintains a level of silence... and respect!"

Via Jeffro at The Poor Farm:


The commenters on Roger L. Simon's post about flip-flopping got into a discussion of leftism and leftists. Here are some that I liked:
In the current economic crisis, they are not rooting for capitalism to recover, they are rooting for it to be destroyed.

They are not rooting for peace in Israel, they are rooting for her to be eradicated.

They are not adherents to science and rigorous testing of hypotheses over religion and faith…they are abusers of science to promote the cult/faith of leftism.

They are not for “green” energy, or reduction of global warming…they are for “red” redistribution and global domination.

And this:
You shouldn’t feel so bad about once being a leftist. The leftist have a neat little trick: they are ALWAYS AGAINST EVERYTHING BAD in our society, our economy, our government. Don’t like racism? The left has got you covered. Hate war? So does the left. Can’t pay your student loan? The left is on your side. The left sustains itself on people’s discontent, and it sustains discontented people with promises of Utopia. To a young person with no experience of How Things Really Work, leftism seems like a perfect fit.

On Black Friday

A friend of mine at work wrote the following about tomorrow, Black Friday. I think maybe he has been in retail a tad too long:
Black Friday is coming, deals are so stunning, they'll have people running and gunning down homies and kids. They'll be tearing off their eye lids so they don't miss an ad-listed price. Hey, take my advice........ Kill Yourself.

By Bre

What is a flip-flop?

Roger L. Simon has written a brilliant essay entitled Confessions of a Flip-Flopper. Here is an excerpt from the closing sentences of his post:
In fact, there is reason to be suspicious of those that don’t ever change their views. Besides often being rigid personalities, they may have difficulty responding to the constant unpredictability of the world. (John Lennon, wrong on a number of things, surely was onto something when he said: “Life is what happens when you’re making other plans.”)

So flip-flopping may be closer to the natural state of things than not.

Which now leads us to the key question in this election season. Since it can be argued that most of us have flipped or flopped one time or another in our lives – except, of course, for those “saintly” or “brilliant” few who realized the truth from birth and have been, ahem, unwavering in its pursuit ever since – how do we determine if a candidate is a flip-flopper or a FLIP-FLOPPER, if you know what I mean?

Many, as we know, have been accused of this crime: Romney, Gingrich, Kerry (and how), Clinton (he and she), Gore, Cain, Obama (of course)… I could go on, but you get the point. And I’m not sure there would be room for all the names on the website anyway. If you examined it closely you could probably find that everyone running for office from POTUS to dog catcher has flip-flopped at one time or other.

So what do we do? A solution to this conundrum might ironically be found in a wise and cynical quote attributed to Holy Roman Emperor Franz II, which inspired the title of a famous John Osborne play. When assured that a certain Austrian was a patriot, the Emperor is said to have replied: “But is he a patriot for me?”

If we replace “patriot” with “flip-flopper” we get: This man is a flip-flopper, but “is he a flip-flopper for me?” Or, more simply, is he basically going my way?

As a graduate student in social work in the 1960s, I was a fan of Saul Alinsky. Now I am a fan of Victor Davis Hanson.

One of the signs of a good post is the number of people commenting. Last I looked he had over 125. Here are some I liked.
Much as you described yourself, well, that is the American electorate. People can switch on a dime. That’s our human nature and it’s a GOOD part of our human nature because it means we don’t want to be SUCKERS. We can CHANGE our minds because we OWN our own minds.

People who are stodgy and set in their ways worry me far more than people who can roll with the punches and adapt.

Or, this one:
A flip-flopper is like a willow that bends with every breeze of the popular whim, and a changing of mind is more like the sturdy oak tree that gets broken by the storm-force of reason.
Usually, when one changes one’s mind, it stays changed. The flip-flopper, however, can flip, then flop, then flip, and when called on it, can equivocate, change the subject, project, or speak fluent jibberish. The one reason the flip-flopper never gives for flip-flopping is that he flips when public opinion flips and flops when public opinion flops. That kind of sooth-saying would cause people to think he was unprincipled and not honest.

Or, this one:
The flip requires a flop to make the flip-flop. This is so elementary, I cannot help but think you are being purposely obtuse, so you can downplay what Romney and Gingrich do.

Mandates are good. No, bad. No good.

AGW is real. No, it’s not. Yes, it is.

I recommend you read the whole thing, including the comments:

Can you find seven things wrong with this riddle?

Seven things are wrong with this riddle. Can you figure them out? The author is Jacob, a friend of eleven-year-old Jon.

One dark morning in the middle of the night, two dead boys got up to fight. Back-to-back they faced each other, drew their swords and shot each other. The deaf policeman heard the noise, and came over and killed the boys. If you think this tale is tall, ask the blind man; he saw it all.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Gingrich and Paul debate the Patriot Act

I agree with Gingrich.

"Not Hiring Until Obama Is Gone"

A Marine who owns a business in Georgia regrets that he will not be hiring new employees "until Obama is gone." Read more here:

CIA agents captured in Iran and Lebanon

Over a dozen CIA agents have been captured in Iran and Lebanon. Read more here:

Happy Thanksgiving!

Ten-year-old Greg wishes you a Happy Thanksgiving!

Turkey is giving the house a welcome smell.
Happy faces spread across all.
All the family eating and drinking
Nothing to worry about at all
Kicking my brother a Thanksgiving kick
Sara's had seconds, thirds, fourths.
Gone is the food when I come by.
Ice cream and stuffing fill my stomach.
Various food all across the table
I'm going to be sick after all this.
Nature seems to be leaves upon leaves.
Gone is the food when I come by.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Plain-speaking New Englanders

With all the news about the Republican primary candidates, we forget that states will also be having Democratic primaries.
New Hampshire Union Leader) Page One Editorial: Primary voters rejected Obama

These students, their generation and all Americans are facing an uncertain, perilous future. In large part, it is because we have a nice-talking, but unprepared man in charge.

Listen to President Obama today and he will lay blame on everyone but himself. His only plan will be to spend more money that we don’t have.

Four years ago, primary voters here tried to tell the nation that this wet-behind-the-ears socialist wannabe was the wrong man. (They picked Hillary Clinton in the primary.)

Here is hoping that seven weeks from today, primary voters here will put the nation on a path to unseating this glib, clueless disaster of a President.

The link:

"It's just the right thing to do."

The Onion features a story about a man who will never be financially well-off, because he just keeps on doing the right things (It is The Onion, so, unfortunately, some rough language is used):,26639/

She worked with Cain for ten years and says he was always a perfect gentleman

Here is a link to an article in which the receptionist for Godfather's Pizza for the entire decade Cain worked there comes forward to say that she does not believe a word his accusers are alleging:

Cover those eyes!

"Women with attractive eyes may be forced to cover them up under Saudi Arabia's latest repressive measure, it was reported yesterday.

The ultra-conservative Islamic state has said it has the right to stop women revealing 'tempting' eyes in public.

A spokesperson for Saudi Arabia's Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, Sheikh Motlab al Nabet, said a proposal to enshrine the measure in law has been tabled."

Read more:

Perry rising?

Ace of Spades has this to say about Governor Perry, Newt Gingrich, and Mitt Romney:
Perry was in the Center Seat on Bret Bair's Special Report last night. As usual, he sounded prepared and fluent in an interview setting, even with several questioners. He also apologized again -- and castigated himself -- for that "you don't have a heart" line.

It does seem that Perry has a particular problem with debates, not a general problem with speaking.

Yeah, I know, the polls show him out of it. But I think that's partly due to preference falsification, as people don't support him because they guess that most other people don't support him.

All I know is that, despite Newt Gingrich's verbal agility, if he's our nominee, we cannot talk about the central role that the Democratic client-organizations Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae played in the destruction of our economy. We can't point out that it was not a lack of government intervention that caused the meltdown, but rather it was government intervention itself which created, and then overfilled, the bubble, with all sorts of ridiculous mortgages.

We also can't talk too much about Obama's individual mandate, as Gingrich was an early champion of it. (As Mitt Romney claimed in one debate -- "I got it from you.")

And if we nominate Romney, of course we cannot talk about ObamaCare at all.

I think these are central issues. If our nominee has to soft-pedal them due to the fact he's compromised on them as well, we're ceding an awful lot to Obama.

My belief is that while it's possible, albeit unlikely, that Perry will become better in debates, it is not possible for Gingrich to go back in time and refuse to consult with Freddie Mac (consult? okay), and it is not possible for Romney to go back in time and undo RomneyCare.

I gotta admit I'd really like a candidate whom the media cannot brand "dumb." I gotta admit that -- I'll be happy with Gingrich or Romney, if only for that reason.

Let's face it, Obama's not particularly smart and both Gingrich and Romney are. What a wonderful change of pace for the Republican to be demonstrably more intelligent than his Democratic opponent.

But still, as nice as that is (and it is pretty sweet, I admit), I think I'd rather have the issues.

I'd also like to have that tiny little apparently-inconsequential point that Perry's Texas has created half the country's jobs in the past two years.

I sort of think the election will be fought and won on that issue. And not so much on anything else.

Ace also notes that Perry has written an op-ed piece for the Washington Times in which he says Eric Holder should be fired by Obama for Fast and Furious. I agree. I also watched the Fox News program referred to above, and was impressed with Perry. One thing he said was that he would not fund foreign aid to China, because they are forcing 35,000 abortions a day!

The link to Ace:

Why didn't I write this post?

This comes under the heading Why didn't I write this post? Tommy De Seno asks, What answer should have Herman Cain given about Libya? The media has excoriated him for his brain freeze on the subject, but I recall from watching the video that he did go on to give a thoughtful and persuasive answer.
The link:

Politics and message coordination; not science

What do you get when you mix science with politics? Politics! Message coordination! Ace of Spades tells it like it is in a post entitled New Round of ClimateGate Emails Reveal "Scientists" Extremely Interested In "The Cause," Public Relations

Read more here:

While we live in comfort...

The Army is banning the anti-malaria drug. This piece describes why, and lets us know some of the hardships our troops are experiencing:

A world of its own

On Michael J. Totten's website guest writer Kyle B. Smith writes and shows photos of his recent visit to North Korea. The hotel in the photo above is 105 stories high, and has been under construction since the 1980s. It will be "finished soon." 100,000 people perform artistic dances and acrobatics every night from August to October, and Smith sprinkles many photos of these celebrations in his article.

It's a different place, for sure:

Quack quack!

Why can't we nominate Victor Davis Hanson for President? Week after week he nails it. His latest is on Obama's economic quackery.
Read the whole thing here:

Core Convictions

Michelle Bachmann calls out Obama on his absence from discussions on solving the nation's debt problem. Bachmann just keeps plugging away, and she has beautiful blue eyes. Just sayin'.

Read more here:

Update: When Michelle Bachmann appeared recently on the Jimmy Fallon show, the house band played Lyin' Ass Bitch. No hostility there, is there?
The link:
Via Ace of Spades

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Confederacy of Dunces

You might think I am a little strange and unpredictable. One minute I am extolling the virtues of an inspirational work of non-fiction like Breaking Night, and the next minute I am extolling the virtues of a humorous, satirical work of fiction, like A Confederacy of Dunces, which is an outrageous depiction of some colorful characters in New Orleans.

Deceased author John Kennedy Toole pulls no punches in his depictions of the characters in A Confederacy of Dunces
The main character is a grotesquely obese man named Ignatius J. Reilly. He is thirty years old, and has spent his life mooching off his mother, a sweet alcoholic woman with maroon hair. With encouragement from a police officer who befriends her after investigating an auto accident caused by her driving while intoxicated, Mr. Reilly's mother finally makes her son go out and apply for a job. He gets the job as a filing clerk for a firm that makes pants. His filing method consists of tossing files in the trash when the hapless office manager is not looking. The office manager is impressed at Reilly's speed and efficiency in moving the mounds of paperwork.

A black man named Jones barely avoids a vagrancy charge by taking a job cleaning up a bar owned by a woman who makes money from scamming orphans. He plans on keeping the job, even though the pay is outrageously low, because he wants to gather evidence against the bar owner on the orphan scam.

Ignatius fancies himself superior to all other humans; in other words, he is an elitist liberal. As such, he believes he is a champion of "social justice," and he decides to visit the sweatshop owned by the pants-making company. There he finds poor blacks supposedly toiling making pants. That is where I am in the reading of the book.

Newt rising?

Is this an example of why Newt is rising in the polls?

Is Newt Gingrich to the left of Mitt Romney? His alliance with Hillary Clinton on healthcare and Nancy Pelosi on global warming would seem to indicate that he is. Fred Barnes analyzes Newt's chances to win the Republican nomination against the more disciplined and careful Romney here:

Update: Timothy Carney argues that Newt is lying when he says he was never a lobbyist. He met with Republican legislators in 2003 to urge them to vote for the prescription drug Medicare program, while he was being paid as a "consultant" for big drug companies. Read more here:

Update two: George Will calls Gingrich a "rental politician," who serves the ethanol lobby and claims that the reason he was paid over seven figures by Freddy Mac was because he is an "historian." Read more here:

Update three: Jennifer Rubin describes Newt as "a font of loony ideas." The link:

Saturday, November 19, 2011

"Meant to be"

The man in this picture is Ryan Bomberger. His birthmother gave birth to him even though her pregnancy was the result of a rape. His adoptive mother's father renounced her, but she had already made her decision. “Losing a father to gain a son. I’m glad she went with the right one,” says Ryan. His adoptive parents went on to adopt ten children in addition to three "natural" children. Ryan is himself a leading advocate for transracial adoptions, and has adopted children himself.

Read much more here:

Perot, Nader, and now Ron Paul?

Ron Paul is refusing to rule out a third party run in 2012. Like Perot giving the election to Clinton and Nader giving it to George W. Bush, Paul could give the White House back to Barack Obama.

Read more here:

Outrageous government and crony capitalism interference in our lives

Belladonna Rogers expects Home Depot to have more people in it than Times Square will have on New Year's Eve 2011. Why? Because that will be the last day 100 watt incandescent light bulbs can legally be sold. The photo above is of bulbs the author has personally purchased recently at Home Depot, and she is not finished!

Read more here:

"Just wishing and saying something can wonderfully make it so."

Every time I read a new essay by Victor Davis Hanson I say, "This is his best one yet." Well, he has done it again this week with a post about the Obama "imaginarium," in which Obama imagines something, and it automatically becomes true, even though Obama's actions are in complete contradiction to his words.

Read more here:

Cain would let states decide if they want to allow medical marijuana

"At a campaign stop in Urbandale, Iowa, Tuesday, Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said he supports letting states establish their own laws regarding medical marijuana."

Read more:

"It’s the Foreign Policy, Stupid!"

James Carville famously said during one of Bill Clinton's campaigns for the White House, "It's the economy, stupid!" Well, Roger L. Simon has a post at PJ Media in which he argues that It’s the Foreign Policy, Stupid!
I think he makes many good points here:

Friday, November 18, 2011

Blame the videotape!

Herman Cain's campaign will no longer allow his meetings with editorial boards to be videotaped. It is not the videotape, Mr. Cain, it is whom is being videotaped!

The link:

Here is the link to the video showing Cain's memory lapse on Libya:


Here are the latest numbers on unmarried births: "More than 7 out of 10 African Americans (72.5 percent) are born out of wedlock, along with more than 6 out of 10 American Indians and Alaska Natives (65.6 percent), and more than 5 out of 10 Hispanics (53.3 percent) — versus fewer than 3 out of 10 whites (29.0 percent) and fewer than 2 out of 10 Asians."

Roger Clegg asks in a blog post at The Corner: "Do you notice any connection between these demographic-by-demographic numbers and how each group is doing educationally, economically, criminally, etc.?"

The link:

Things to be thankful for

A Toronto school has banned soccer balls, footballs, baseballs, and even tennis balls, after a parent was hit on the head with a soccer ball. Well, at least my kids can be thankful they do not attend that school!

The link:

Follow these tips!

Hey guys, it may be too late for Herman Cain to avoid allegations of sexual harrassment, but, thanks to Saturday Night Live, it may not be too late for us!
Via Dr. Sanity, who has temporarily stopped blogging, but apparently could not resist passing the SNL video along to us:

"Life takes on the meaning that you give it."

I finally finished Liz Murray's book Breaking Night, which I heartily recommend as very inspirational. Above is a picture of her (third from the right) with people in her community of friends now in New York City. Here is a link to what she is doing nowadays:

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Who is the biggest "fat cat" of them all?

Frank J. Fleming writes in the New York Post: "It wouldn’t be so bad if Uncle Sam earned his money, but he doesn’t. He’s never produced anything — he gets all his money through deception.

For instance, he said he was going to provide retirement savings for everyone, but the whole thing is a Ponzi scheme in which Uncle Sam constantly raids the funds while giving people a horrible return on their investments. He’s bilked people out of trillions with that scam; Bernie Madoff is a shoplifter by comparison.

He’s always looking for more ways to scam people, hiding fees everywhere. He even grabs money out of our paychecks and then gives us a small fraction back once a year as a “rebate” and expects us to be grateful.

You almost have to admire his shamelessness; he mugs you and expects you to thank him because he gave you back a dollar.

Uncle Sam has absolutely no appreciation for his unearned wealth and just spends it lavishly and pointlessly. A while back, people were criticizing how much he was spending on public-radio stations no one listens to, and his defense was that it was only $100 million. Only $100 million. Can you even imagine being so wealthy that $100 million is an inconsequential sum?

This guy is completely disconnected from the financial reality we’re all in. Unlike responsible rich people who have savings and investments, Uncle Sam is hugely in debt. No matter how much money he has, Princess Sam thinks he deserves to spend more."
Read more here:

Via Instapundit:

An honest answer


Today when I asked Greg what he learned in school, he thought a bit, then said, "I learned that if you make too much noise in science class the teacher will send you outside. It was a really nice day, so I was actually glad to get to go outside. I'll have to remember, though, not to make too much noise on days when the weather is bad."

(Whose kid is he, anyway?) The photo above is one I took of Greg this summer at the Elitch Amusement Park in Denver.

Mice have new pituitary glands!

New gland: After 13 days in culture, mouse embryonic stem cells had self-assembled the precursor pouch, shown here, that gives rise to the pituitary gland.

"Last spring, a research team at Japan's RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology created retina-like structures from cultured mouse embryonic stem cells. This week, the same group reports that it's achieved an even more complicated feat—synthesizing a stem-cell-derived pituitary gland."

Read more here:

As Obama says, the occupiers and tea partyers are alike

John at the Verum Serum blog has compiled a list of mayhem caused by the occupiers, sorted by type of mayhem. The list includes numerous examples of arson, assault/threats, drugs/dealing, fraud, illness/death, murder, public disturbance, rape/sexual assault, sedition, suicide/overdose, theft, and vandalism.

Read more here:


Solyandra's corrupt ties to Obama's White House have been in the news for weeks. Now we learn about another "connected" firm that went under. BrightSource, run by R.F.K. Jr, that received $1.4 billion in loans. Yesterday Obama decried the "connected" in a speech in Hawaii, which he referred to as "here in Asia."

Read more here:

"No one truly knows what is possible until they go and do it!"

To ensure that she would not miss more than one day of school, Liz Murray scheduled three interviews in one day: the welfare office, Harvard, and The New York Times! The only one of these interviews that did not go well? You guessed it: the welfare office. The surly welfare caseworker mocked her and told her she was not eligible.

But, as the day progressed, so did her luck in interviews. The interview for admission into Harvard, and the interview for a scholarship from The New York Times went extremely well. As Liz writes in her memoir Breaking Night, "No one truly knows what is possible, until they go and do it!"

A week later she received a phone call from The New York Times telling her she was one of six scholarship winners. When her picture and story appeared in the paper, she received generous support from many people. One group of people paid the back rent owed by Liz, her friend Samantha, and her sister Lisa. Liz had used all her savings from a summer job to pay the deposit on the apartment, and things needed for living in the apartment, and the agreement was that Lisa would pay the rent from her job at The Gap. However, the day after they moved in, Lisa lost her job! Thus, the appointment at the welfare office.

After the outpouring of support engendered by the Times story, Liz Murray never again spent a night homeless.

10 things not to do if you are raising a toddler

Are you raising a toddler? writes a humorous post listing some things you would be well-advised not to do. For example:
. DON'T let a boy shorter than the toilet try to pee standing up. Too late for that? Try not yelling helpful tips like, "Point your penis up!" Too late for that? Wipe your chin.

Read more here:

Mullahs' woes

Michael Ledeen, who I believe is the most knowledgeable writer about Iran, says there were two major explosions at two different military zones in Iran this past weekend. Those, coupled with explosions at refineries and pipelines, suggest to Ledeen that the opposition movement is no longer non-violent. Adding to the Mullahs' woes are computer viruses. I wonder where those are coming from!

Read more here:

Protesters occupy cops' time, budget

The headline for this post was lifted from the front page above-the-fold of today's Denver Post. The story says that the Occupiers have cost the 99% of the rest of Denver's citizens hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the police department is asking for a $6,000,000 budget increase. Overtime costs for various departments of the city were $365,000 for just the last five days of October! Of course, police response times to other non-occupier calls has slowed. I assume it is a great time to be a batterer or a thief.

Obama: in bed with big labor, big business, big government, and big green

It is interesting to hear Obama portray himself as the champion of little guys, yet do so by allying himself with big government, big labor unions, and big corporations. Fred Barnes quotes consultant David Smick:
“What an irony for an administration that claims populist roots,” Smick says. “Policy prescriptions for the most part use the top-down approach. Bring out the GE guy and various big labor bosses to deal with the jobless nightmare when the bulk of the solution involves fostering small business start-ups.”

More from Barnes:
Jeffrey Immelt, General Electric’s CEO, happens to be chairman of Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. GE is famous for having paid no corporate income taxes in 2009 and 2010 and shipping thousands of jobs overseas. The council’s membership consists of 23 corporate chiefs, two labor leaders, one economist, one biologist, and zero representatives of small business.

For contributions to his reelection campaign, Obama has tapped the segment of big business he’s referred to as “fat cat bankers”: Wall Street. According to the Washington Post, he has raised more from financiers and bankers than all of the Republican presidential candidates combined. He’s raised more at Bain Capital than Mitt Romney, who co-founded the firm.

Wall Street has reason to be grateful. “During Obama’s tenure, Wall Street has roared back, even as the broader economy has struggled,” Zachary Goldfarb of the Washington Post wrote last week. “Wall Street firms .  .  . earned more in the first two and a half years of the Obama administration than they did during the eight years of the George W. Bush administration.”

Barnes goes on to document the rise of big unions and big government. Then, he finishes his essay with one more big:
Last week, Obama veered from his top priority with unemployment at 9 percent: more jobs. A Canadian company plans to hire as many as 20,000 workers to build an oil pipeline from the province of Alberta to Texas. Its application, pending since 2008, has sparked growing protests by environmental activists. Obama promises to decide personally whether to approve the pipeline. And last week, he took a preliminary step, delaying the decision until after the 2012 election. So for now, the little guy lost. The winner: big green.

Read more here:


Forgiveness. Is it more important to you to forgive a loved one, and thereby keep the connection with that person, or to see yourself as a victim, hold on to a grudge, and become estranged from that person? In her memoir, Breaking Night, Liz Murray, a victim of neglectful parents, tells how she chose to let go of feelings of victimhood, like releasing helium balloons into the air. It was more important to her to remain connected with those whom she loved. That is a rare attribute, isn't it? It is the essence of Jesus Christ, yet, few of us who proclaim Him to be our Lord practice forgiveness.

Ironically, school became Liz's refuge. I say ironically, because she did not see the value of school until she was seventeen. If we practice forgiveness, does God give us refuge, lead us in a direction where we can find outlets for our God-given talents? Does He give us angels, and/or the Holy Spirit, to help us develop the work ethic needed to persevere on the path He is leading us? Is forgiveness the highest form of mental health?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Perry's new ad

Via Gateway Pundit:

Update: Here is an analysis of what Perry is doing with his new ad campaign, and how the liberal media is responding:

Sock it to him!

Bill Maher gets some of what he deserves from Elizabeth Hasselbeck.

The link:

Feeling depressed?

If you're lucky, this might happen to you: Hat tip to Julie at A Work in Progress:

or, this:


Jayde Vernoy is the daughter of Rita Vernoy, a missionary in Paraguay, who writes a blog I have been following for years: The Jungle Hut.
I don't follow the Spanish, but I know talent when I see it and hear it. Rita must be very, very proud. Get caught up in the joy of this song!

The link to The Jungle Hut:

Self defense

Once again Jeffro at The Poor Farm comes through with something powerful to get our attention.

The link:

Saved by dilation

Today I had an appointment with an eye doctor. He is a groovy guy, so it didn't surprise me that included among his magazines was the ultra-leftist Rolling Stone. I grabbed the one that announced on its cover that inside it had an expose on how the Republicans became the party of the rich. If you are like me, and read more conservative stuff than leftist trash, perhaps you would like to expand your horizon by reading this fair-and-balanced (ha!) article. Luckily, my eyes had been dilated by the good doctor before I could finish reading the hit piece.

Here it is:

Secret Service searches Occupiers' tents for man who fired bullets at the White House

This is the first I have heard of one of the Occupiers shooting bullets at the White House. The link:

Update: They have the suspect:

The shooting happened Friday night, and we are just hearing about it? You don't suppose it was covered up by the media because of White House support for the Occupiers?

Amazing story

In the wonderful video by Bill Whittle several posts below this one, Bill lists imagination, ambition, skill, work ethic, and perseverance as the attributes we can follow to be successful in our endeavors. Breaking Night by Liz Murray is a story about a young person who wrapped all those attributes around herself as she was homeless at age 17, imagined she could start going to school(s) for the first time at age 17, get straight A's, and finish one year of high school per semester, while doing homework, then sleeping for a few hours a night at the top landing on marble floors in hallways of buildings in New York City, using her backpack as a pillow.

You're next, Newt!

Like clockwork, the White House and the media work together to gather dirt on GOP candidates, but they don't release the dirt until and unless the candidate is rising in the polls. It is as predictable as the sun coming up in the east and setting in the west. Today they are going after Newt Gingrich, who has done well in the debates and is, therefore, rising in the polls. Here is a story noting that he made a lot of money consulting for Freddy Mac, the politically connected mortgage giant, whose practices contributed mightily to the 2008 recession:

and there is this:

and this:

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Blurry vision guaranteed after you watch this video


Things I don't understand

The National Enquirer this week quotes the husband of Kim Kardashian saying Kim's butt is fake, and he has photos to prove it! How do you get a fake butt? Why would you want one? Why would you want a husband who tells the world your butt is fake?

Why does he want the world to know her butt is fake? Why does he think anyone in the world would want to know? Some guys just don't know when to keep their mouths shut!

"Antidote to the obsolete media"

Imagination, ambition, skill, work ethic, perseverance

Monday, November 14, 2011

Parenting: "a wonderful education all on its own"

Want to know about The Parental School of Selective Properties?

Lemon Stand has the complete curriculum here:

The "Zombies of the Cosmos"

Have you heard of Neutron stars? Here is some information about them:
Neutron stars have been called the zombies of the cosmos, shining on even though they're technically dead, and occasionally feeding on a neighboring star if it gets too close.

They are born when a massive star runs out of fuel and collapses under its own gravity, crushing the matter in its core and blasting away its outer layers in a supernova explosion that can outshine a billion suns.

The core, compressed by gravity to inconceivable density – one teaspoon would weigh about a billion tons on Earth – lives on as a neutron star. Although the nuclear fusion fires that sustained its parent star are extinguished, it still shines with heat left over from its explosive formation, and from radiation generated by its magnetic field, which became intensely concentrated as the core collapsed, and can be over a trillion times stronger than Earth

The link:


When Liz Murray's mother finally died of AIDS, Liz wrote her mother, comparing their relationship to pearls from an oyster. Liz writes in Breaking Night, "People think of pearls as beautiful gems, but they do not realize that those pearls actually come from pain; from something hard or dangerous getting trapped where it doesn't belong." Liz actually "oystered" the family's pain until pearls were born: "thousands of tiny losses to withhold." In the end, though, Liz questions whether her silence did any good, for her, or for her mother.

Not wanting to hurt her mother, or push her away, Liz became her mother's caretaker. It is supposed to be the other way around. When children become their parent's caretaker, they are forced to swallow their own feelings, afraid that they will hurt their fragile parent, or push her away. Like the oyster's pearls, the child is trapped.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Victor Davis Hanson advises us: "take the castor oil!"

"The enemy of your enemy is not your friend!"

TL in Exile tries to wake up feminists. Good luck with that, TL!
"Now that the Iran-backed movements of the Muslim Brotherhood have flexed their muscles I would look toward Iran and Yemen to see the rights women will have in the future."

The link:

Not everybody likes "Sugarcane"

Daphne at Jaded Haven has some warnings for conservatives who are supporting Herman Cain.
Unfortunately, the growing epistemic closure among politically engaged conservatives creates an unintended cul-de-sac of partisan fury that blindly ignores the harsh facts of reality on a regular basis.

Read more here:

"Grow Up!"

Bill Whittle has some ideas for the Occupiers:

The link:

CBS anchor gets his lunch handed to him

Romney and Gingrich shine in this video (and Gingrich socks it to CBS anchor Scott Pelley)

The link:

Update: Ann Althouse has a good discussion of this clip here:

"I know they're liars"

The link:

This week: Mrs. Cain to be interviewed on Fox

"The public will soon get a chance to see the woman behind GOP frontrunner Herman Cain. His wife Gloria is accompanying him on his current trip to Washington, and plans to sit down for an interview with FOX News’ “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren” this Friday night," reports Susan Archer of ABC News. Herman and Gloria have been married for 43 years.
Update: I should have known better than to quote ABC News. The interview with Greta will air Monday night, according to The Blaze:

Who is more impatient and irritable, men, or women?

Are men more impatient than women? They are in the supermarket, especially in the self-checkout lanes. When the (female) automated voice comes on, telling them to place their items in the bagging area, or telling them that their card has been declined, they are more likely than women shoppers to become irritated. Women, on the other hand, are more likely to react anxiously, especially when the automated voice tells them their card is being declined. They worry that they have been spending too much money, and how will the husband react when he finds out?

Maybe it depends on the setting. At the trout stream, where the man is casting a fly over and over, and the trout are not biting, he will just aim it in a different area of the stream, or go to his tackle box and try another type of fly. This might go on for hours, with no sign of annoyance or impatience on the part of the guy.

Unless the woman is Webutante, she is more likely to be sitting under a shade tree near the stream reading the latest vampire book or romance novel, or watching the kids play.

Link to Webutante:

Using candidates' own words to discredit them

Never lacking creative ways to discredit popular conservatives, the Associated Press and liberal newspapers did a superb job ridiculing Herman Cain and Rick Perry Sunday. The A.P. writer's technique was particularly effective because he used the candidate's own words, or, in the case of Rick Perry, the words of his spouse. To draw the attention of as many readers as possible, The Denver Post put the teaser for the story at the top left corner of the front page of the paper: Cain: God told me to run for President.

"The Georgia business executive played up his faith Saturday after battling sexual harassment allegations for two weeks, trying to shift the conversation to religion, an issue vital to conservative Republicans, especially in the South." "Cain isn't the first to say God prodded him toward a campaign. Texas Gov. Rick Perry's wife, Anita, has said she felt God was speaking to her about the race, adding that her husband needed to see a "burning bush," a Biblical reference to God's first appearance to Moses."

But, wait! Has the A.P. writer "misunderestimated" the American people? Are we really turned off by politicians who talk openly about their religious faith? I'll admit it makes me uneasy when people tell me God spoke directly to them, because I have never experienced that phenomena myself. Furthermore, the A.P. writer clearly infers that Cain's religious talk is only an effort to change the subject away from allegations that he may have acted sexually inappropriately in the past.

Obama ridiculed the voters of rural Pennsylvania in 2008, telling some "one percenters" in San Francisco that the voters in rural Pennsylvania were bitterly clinging to their guns and religion. Someone in the group, probably not one of the one percenters, had a tape recorder, and Obama's words were soon all over talk radio. The result? Obama won Pennsylvania!

So, Americans, where do you stand on candidates talking about their religious faith? Have the mental health industry and liberal newspapers convinced you that talking to God and God talking to you is a form of schizophrenia? Would you feel better about the candidate if he started talking to God, but then realized all he really needed to do was pop an anti-psychotic med? I think the A.P. and Obama are betting on the med.

Read more:

Update: The Lonely Conservative has this comment: "Ugh. We already have a president who believes he’s the Messiah. We certainly don’t need another one."

Read more:

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Hollywood tweeters support the Occupiers

Many Hollywood stars have been making sacrifices to show their support for the Occupiers. don't miss this hilarious post by Manhatten Infidel:

"Don't sleep! Dream, but don't sleep!"

Those were the words of Liz Murray's first boyfriend, whom Liz writes about in Breaking Night. Like Liz, he was also the child of neglectful parents, learning to fend for himself on the streets of the Bronx. She was attracted to him because of his incredible sense of humor and bold assertiveness, a quality that her best female friend, Sam, also possessed. When she saw how sweet Carlos was to her AIDS-stricken mother, because of his love for Liz, she was hooked on her love for him.

Liz and Sam finally became officially homeless when Liz was fifteen. Her boyfriend, Carlos, told Liz to "enjoy the freedom; make it work for you!"

Friday, November 11, 2011

Asking questions about our legacy of racism

Shannon Love writes a blog post about Herman Cain and the Hyper-Male Stereotype.

Read the whole thing here:

Is Obama unbound?

Here's another essay by Victor Davis Hanson. this time he writes about the "weird paradoxes of American presidential politics."
Richard Nixon went to Red China with political impunity. Had a Democrat tried that, he would have been branded a commie appeaser.

To this day, liberals cannot conceive that during the two world wars, progressives like Woodrow Wilson, Earl Warren and Franklin Delano Roosevelt trampled on civil liberties in a way unimagined by Dick Cheney.

Ronald Reagan signed the most liberal illegal immigration amnesty bill in history, and ran larger yearly deficits than had Jimmy Carter. “Read my lips” George H.W. Bush agreed to huge tax increases. And George W. Bush ran up the largest debt of any eight-year president, outspending Bill Clinton by more than fivefold. The latter, remember, bombed Belgrade without either congressional or United Nations approval — and without antiwar protests.

Without an opposition, almost anything goes. The result is that for the next year or so, Obama can more or less do whatever he wishes abroad. If he chooses to bomb a country that poses no direct threat to the U.S. without congressional authority, like Libya, or to assassinate a U.S. citizen-terrorist, like Anwar al-Awlaki, the Left will keep mum. And the Right, for different reasons, probably will, too.

The link:

Hanson: Paterno, Cain, Blue Wall Street, and illegal immigration

Victor Davis Hanson is at it again. Commenting first on Joe Paterno and Penn State, then on Herman Cain, he saves his best for "Blue Wall Street" and Barack Obama:
We live in an age where the biggest recipient of Goldman Sachs and BP cash, indeed the most successful Wall Street fundraiser in presidential history, who alone renounced public financing of presidential general election campaigns, can himself politick as an anti-Wall Street, anti-corporate jet, anti-“millionaires and billionaires” man of the people. What does Barack Obama do when he meets his own targets at the back nine on Martha’s Vineyard? Smile and say, “Nothing personal,” as he invites them over to a $50,000 a plate fundraiser?

The charge that many financial institutions are amoral may be true, but the charge that they are logical reflections of conservative greed is often a lie. Indeed, Wall Street is more deeply embedded within the Ivy League, and within the New York-Washington liberal nexus, than among the sorts who show up at a Tea Party rally. Exactly what financial brilliance earned Jamie Gorelick, a Clinton apparatchik, a $26 million take at Fannie Mae, as it imploded and nearly wrecked the country? Did she give back to the Fed any of her lucre? What sort of populist was a Sen. Chris Dodd (of Dodd-Frank reform fame) who used his office for low-interest personal loans? How in the world did Rahm Emanuel end up making $16 million as a “banker”—what financial genius had he previously shown, what Harvard MBA did he earn? How did Barney Frank go from a demagogue demanding no-background loans for the supposedly underprivileged overnight to a concerned legislator pontificating, after the fall, that renting for some might be preferable?

So until I see posters of a Gorelick or Rains in Oakland, I don’t put much stock in the Occupy protests.

Hanson finishes this week's superb essay by focusing on illegal immigration:
“Illegal immigration” is not about illegal immigration. I would have thought the issue was only about poverty, until realizing that $40-50 billion a year leave the U.S. in remittances to Latin America, in many cases from those who use American subsidies to free up cash to send home. It is not quite about moral justice, given that the U.S. is in near recession with millions of citizens out of work and whose earning power in the Southwest was eroded by cheaper workers here illegally. Nor is Mexico innocent, but by design seeks to export its own impoverished to win remittances, ease the burden of paying for social services, and build an expatriate community more sympathetic to Mexico the longer and farther it is away from it.

Read the whole thing here:

Smart, or stoopid?

Are you smart, or stoopid? Go here to take a test and find out:


Today was an emotional day at work. American flags were flying. Veterans were proudly wearing hats that told what branch of the military they had served in. I engaged them in conversations whenever I could.

One veteran had served 33 years as a nurse in the Navy. He felt particularly concerned about the troops who are serving now in Iraq and Afghanistan. Numerous tours of duty, getting ambushed or blown-up by I.E.Ds, coming home for brief visits with family and then getting jerked back to Afghanistan; all of that is taking a toll on these troops and their families.

Another man had served in the Navy during the Korean "police action." when I remarked that we should have finished the job in North Korea, he reminded me that General McCarthur had been fired by Harry Truman for recommending just that. Harry Truman did a lot of good things (Rumsfeld is an admirer), but that was certainly not one of his most popular decisions.

Making human connections

Liz Murray writes in Breaking Night about being in the "system:" the juvenile system (truancy), the welfare system, the child protection system. Because her parents were addicts, she was left to fend for herself throughout her childhood. Various officials from the "system" paraded in and out of her life; some were well-meaning, some were not.

I'm halfway through the book. She is now in the eighth grade, and so far not a single official has had the skill or commitment to connect with her, human-to-human. What a damning indictment of the social work profession.

How do you make a human-to-human connection and still be professional? How do you overcome the resistance from a child who knows you have the power to take her away from the only parents she has ever known? It's not going to happen in one visit. She has to become convinced over time that you really are there for her, no matter what; that it is not just a job to you, but a real commitment to her long-term well-being.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Perry's three agencies of government

Sarah Palin on Crony Capitalism

From one of Sarah's recent speeches:
"We sent a new class of leaders to D.C., but immediately the permanent political class tried to co-opt them – because the reality is we are governed by a permanent political class, until we change that. They talk endlessly about cutting government spending, and yet they keep spending more. They talk about massive unsustainable debt, and yet they keep incurring more. They spend, they print, they borrow, they spend more, and then they stick us with the bill. Then they pat their own backs, and they claim that they faced and “solved” the debt crisis that they got us in, but when we were humiliated in front of the world with our country’s first credit downgrade, they promptly went on vacation.

No, they don’t feel the same urgency that we do. But why should they? For them business is good; business is very good. Seven of the ten wealthiest counties are suburbs of Washington, D.C. Polls there actually – and usually I say polls, eh, they’re for strippers and cross country skiers – but polls in those parts show that some people there believe that the economy has actually improved. See, there may not be a recession in Georgetown, but there is in the rest of America.

Yeah, the permanent political class – they’re doing just fine. Ever notice how so many of them arrive in Washington, D.C. of modest means and then miraculously throughout the years they end up becoming very, very wealthy? Well, it’s because they derive power and their wealth from their access to our money – to taxpayer dollars. They use it to bail out their friends on Wall Street and their corporate cronies, and to reward campaign contributors, and to buy votes via earmarks. There is so much waste. And there is a name for this: It’s called corporate crony capitalism. This is not the capitalism of free men and free markets, of innovation and hard work and ethics, of sacrifice and of risk. No, this is the capitalism of connections and government bailouts and handouts, of waste and influence peddling and corporate welfare. This is the crony capitalism that destroyed Europe’s economies. It’s the collusion of big government and big business and big finance to the detriment of all the rest – to the little guys. It’s a slap in the face to our small business owners – the true entrepreneurs, the job creators accounting for 70% of the jobs in America, it’s you who own these small businesses, you’re the economic engine, but you don’t grease the wheels of government power.

So, do you want to know why the permanent political class doesn’t really want to cut any spending? Do you want to know why nothing ever really gets done? It’s because there’s nothing in it for them. They’ve got a lot of mouths to feed – a lot of corporate lobbyists and a lot of special interests that are counting on them to keep the good times and the money rolling along."

And she is out of the Republican primaries because why?

the link:

Different versions of ourselves

How many versions of you are there? In her magnificent book Breaking Night, author Liz Murray identifies five versions of her "ma."
1. Crazy Ma
2. Drugged and drunken Ma
3. Sober and nice Ma
4. "Check day" happy Ma
5. Pleasant, fresh-out-of-the-hospital Ma
Her favorite version of her ma was number five. She was her ma's caretaker. She was her ma's "punkin." It got me to thinking about how we all have different versions of ourselves, depending on the setting, or on who and what we are dealing with.

At age nine Liz realized that she could do something about her family's severe poverty. Unauthorized, she pumped gas at self-serve gas stations for tips. Then, at the same age, she bagged groceries for tips. She soon realized she could buy anything on the McDonald's menu, and support her family until the next disability check arrived. Her ma was legally blind, as well as being an addict.

If there is a better writer in America right now than Liz Murray, I don't know who it would be.

Thomas Sowell writes about "the real scandal"

Thomas Sowell joins the chorus of conservatives who are speaking out against the attempt to silence Herman Cain. He asserts that
The real scandal in the accusations against Herman Cain​ is the corruption of the law, the media and politics.

He finishes his post with this:
"The same mainstream media whose responses to proven charges against Bill Clinton​ was, "Let's move on," is not about to move on from unproven charges against Herman Cain.

What role does race play in all this?

It is probably not racism, as such, that motivates these attacks on Herman Cain. The motivation is far more likely to be politics, but politics makes a prominent black conservative like Clarence Thomas​ or Herman Cain far more dangerous to the Democrats than an equally prominent white conservative.

The 90 percent black vote for Democrats is like money in the bank on election day. A prominent black conservative who offers an alternative view of the world is a serious danger politically, because if that alternative view has the net effect of reducing the black vote for Democrats just to 75 percent, the Democrats are in big trouble at election time.

In this political context, merely defeating a black conservative at the polls or at confirmation hearings is not enough. He must be destroyed as an influence in the future -- and character assassination is the most obvious way to do it."

Read the whole thing here:

Is Ann Coulter onto something?

Ann Coulter has written a post entitled David Axelrod's Pattern of Sexual Misbehavior. She shows how Axelrod has helped Obama win elections by digging up divorce records and destroying every Obama opponent with the allegations in them (except the election Obama lost to Bobby Rush, who was not divorced). Obama's opponents spend precious time defending themselves against allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior. Remember the New York Times allegations against John McCain?

Here is how Ann begins her piece:
"Herman Cain has spent his life living and working all over the country -- Indiana, Georgia, Minnesota, Nebraska, Kansas, Washington, D.C. -- but never in Chicago.

So it's curious that all the sexual harassment allegations against Cain emanate from Chicago: home of the Daley machine and Obama consigliere David Axelrod."

Is Ann onto something?

Read the whole thing here:
Hat tip to my friend Cliff for telling me about this piece.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Role reversal

Bill Kurtis of CBS knows some things about Cain sexual assault accuser Sharon Bialek. He says she has a "history," and that when they were in the car, what actually happened may be a complete role reversal of what she alleges! Bill Kurtis has been around for a long time. I remember watching him on television when I was a boy!

The link:

Feeling a chill today?

The link:

"Put it in writing"

The link:

"Modesto ain't New York"

A man tries to go home from a day of work. A hippie Occupier harasses him and other drivers. The hippie puts his hands on the man's truck. The man gasses the hippie with pepper spray, and drives home. The man blogs about his experience.

The link (with colorful language):

Getting away with 9-11?

Do we have the full story of 9-11-2001? Was Iran involved? How about Hezbollah? How about members of the Saudi royal family? This blog post explores these and other questions:

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

"Prudence and truth"

The Market Ticker blog warns that Italy is the next European country we are going to be hearing about financially. Some quotes from the post:
"The world is being dragged kicking and screaming into recognition of two fundamental facts:

You cannot borrow your way to prosperity.

You have to pay for what you demand from the government."
"This crap has to stop and stop now. We cannot have the government spending more than it takes in via taxes. It's that simple. Nor can any other nation. If you want to call this names ("austerity") that's fine; I call it prudence and truth, because it is.

The so-called "supercommittee" isn't going to do jack and squat in this regard. They'll pull some dog and pony show, but this much I assure you: When, not if, Europe comes apart if we have not erected the walls necessary to withstand that financial tsunami first we're all going to be 500' below sea level."

The link:

Iranian Payload

What does the International Atomic Energy report say about Iran's weapon payload?
The blogger at Market ticker adds this explanatory note: Ps: An EMP weapon is a special sort of nuclear device in that it is optimized to interact with the earth's magnetic field so as to produce a huge coupled electrical pulse into any metallic thing that is long enough to work as an antenna. It thus is intended to destroy electrical and electronic infrastructure rather than blow things on the ground to bits or kill people with the direct and indirect blast effects and is a nasty weapon as it should not produce a material amount of fallout and physical destruction.

The link:

Burying Herman Cain

One conservative blogger says Herman Cain is unelectable because of "the four 'Cs': competency, consistency, character, crisis management.

The link:

Thomas Sowell on the numbers game

"The Internal Revenue Service can follow individual people over the years because they can identify individuals from their Social Security numbers. During recent years, when “the top one percent” as an income category has been getting a growing share of the nation’s income, IRS data show that actual flesh and blood people who were in the top one percent in 1996 had their incomes go down — repeat, DOWN — by a whopping 26 percent by 2005.

How can both sets of statistics be true at the same time? Because most people who are in the top one percent in a given year do not stay in that bracket over the years.

If we are being serious — as distinguished from being political — then our concern should be with what is happening to actual flesh and blood human beings, not what is happening to abstract income brackets.

f we are being serious — as distinguished from being political — then our concern should be with what is happening to actual flesh and blood human beings, not what is happening to abstract income brackets.

There is the same statistical problem when talking about “the poor” as there is when talking about “the rich.”

A University of Michigan study showed that most of the working people who were in the bottom 20 percent of income earners in 1975 were also in the top 40 percent at some point by 1991. Only 5 percent of those in the bottom quintile in 1975 were still there in 1991, while 29 percent of them were now in the top quintile.

People in the media and in politics choose statistics that seem to prove what they want to prove. But the rest of us should become aware of what games are being played with numbers."

The link:

The Democratic National Convention lays off workers in Charlotte

The Sister Toldjah blog has a post showing how the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina next year is laying off non-union employees at the Ritz Carlton, where Obama is expected to stay, and hiring out-of-state union workers instead of Charlotte-area workers.

The link:

This story was actually broken on Nov 4 by this blog:

The Democratic Party and Civil Rights

The Sister Toldjah blog adds: "One can argue that the large blocs in Congress opposing civil rights legislation were “less Democrat” than they were Southern, the legacy of both the region’s history with slavery and the place where Jim Crow originated and was most strongly in force. (Though Jim Crow was not limited to the South, to be sure.) This line of argument also would point out that they were Democratic politicians because of the Civil War, in which a Republican administration first crushed the Confederacy and then imposed the hated Reconstruction. And that would be a fair observation. BUT… it is also fair to note that Northern and Western Democrats continually allied with racist Southern Democrats to win national elections and get legislation passed, each giving the other what it wanted. Which means there is no way around it: the Democratic Party as a whole owns that dirty history."

The link:


Hi! My name is Sara, and I am going to be eight-years-old next Sunday. Today I want to write about making friends. If someone is not your friend, but you want her to be your friend, come up to her and say, "I want you to be my friend. Please stop being mean to me." If she says no, ask her why. If she explains what you did that made her angry, tell her you are sorry. If she says, "Do you mean it?" Say "Yes, I do mean it!" If she forgives you, then you can go outside and play with her at recess!

I started in a new school in the middle of the fall semester this year, and so far, I don't have any friends there.

One t.v. is enough!

Hi! My name is Sara. I will be eight-years-old Sunday. Today I am writing about why we don't have five t.v.s and our neighbors do have five t.v.s. When you watch too much t.v., your eyes can hurt, you don't get enough exercise, you don't go outside, and you don't use your imagination. If you have one or more computers, you only need one t.v.

"There is bad, and there is worse."

Grim writes:
"We shall face the next four years with some sort of crony capitalist in office; we must decide which kind. Those of us who would prefer to build a citizenry rather than a workforce, or an economy built around small businesses and farms -- that Jeffersonian model favoring the private ownership of individual means of production -- we will not see any joy out of the next President. Still, there is bad and there is worse, and it may be that the bad is not entirely without its silver lining."

He links to a post by Walter Russell Mead about the symbiosis between Blue Wall Street and the state. But, what about crony capitalism?. Will we get the Red Model, which uses government to favor corporate interests (Perry), or the Blue Model (Romney)?
The link to Grim:
The link to Mead:

Breaking Night

I am about one-fourth of the way into a book entitled Breaking Night. When I go to the library, I usually hurriedly pick up several books that look interesting, but I usually read only one or two of the pile I pick up and take home. I didn't think I would read this one, because it is about a girl who is the daughter of drug addicts in New York City. After a career in child protection, the last thing I want to do is open up all those memories.

Yet, I did begin to read the book. The writer is the younger of two daughters. Her older sister was temporarily removed from the home when the mother was pregnant with the writer. That period in foster care was enough to show the older sister that there are families who actually provide for their children on a consistent basis. Upon being returned to her mother, the older sister felt cheated, victimized, and was always angry at being neglected.

The author, Liz Murray, on the other hand, was her parents' caretaker, wanting their love and attention more than anything else in the world. She never blamed them for their horrendous addictions. She knew they loved her and needed her. And, she knew how to maximize opportunities for her to assist her parents.

Liz is a wonderful writer.