Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Birds of a Feather

Remember. He's not a socialist!

Cartoon at IBD today:

Related - Mary Anastasia O'Grady - ultimate expert on Central and South American communist movements - wrote in yesterday's WSJ, Honduras Defends Its Democracy. A MUST read to get the facts straight before venturing further into this story of constitutional government and freedom.

Hugo Chávez's coalition-building efforts suffered a setback yesterday when the Honduran military sent its president packing for abusing the nation's constitution.
Yesterday the Central American country was being pressured to restore the authoritarian Mr. Zelaya by the likes of Fidel Castro, Daniel Ortega, Hillary Clinton and, of course, Hugo himself. The Organization of American States, having ignored Mr. Zelaya's abuses, also wants him back in power. It will be a miracle if Honduran patriots can hold their ground.

The MSM is reporting this as a coup rather than a Supreme Court and military command acting as their constitution requires. Our thanks to O'Grady for the real story!

The Honduran Supreme Court and Military Command are the heroes of 2009. For us - the envy is strong within...

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sunday Evening Cigar

85 degrees, clear, breezy. Perfect. We celebrated the rare mild weather with another Santa Damiana.

We're half way through George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, a book soon to be confiscated by Obama's Thought Police! Just $10.37 at Amazon - Link

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Karl's Weekend Reading

Iran, and Neda Agha Soltan were in the news this week. Here are some comments on our Dear Leader's reaction to a fraudulent election and subsequent crack-down, abuse and murder of freedom-loving people.

Mark Steyn, Neutrality Isn't an Option:

...when the analysts had finished combing [Obama's] speech, they would have concluded that the meta-message of his “equidistance” was a prostration before “stability” — an acceptance of the region’s worst pathologies as a permanent feature of life.

The mullahs stole this election on a grander scale than ever before primarily for reasons of internal security and regional strategy. But Obama’s speech told them that, in the “post-American world,” they could do so with impunity. Blaming his “agents” for the protests is merely a bonus: Offered the world’s biggest carrot, Khamenei took it and used it as a stick.

Alexander Benard, How to Handle a Tyrant:

"To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”

These words, spoken by President Obama in his inaugural address, marked the beginning of what has been a concerted effort to reach out to tyrants from Pyongyang to Tehran. A dozen missile launches, a nuclear detonation, a rigged election, and countless crackdowns on individual liberties later, it is safe to say this effort has had the opposite of its intended effect.

Victor Davis Hanson, Obama's New Liberal Realism:

Then, of course, there is Obama and his quest for a global messianic rather than an American presidential role. So far it pays to be Hamas and the Palestine Authority rather than Israel, Chávez rather than Uribe, Ahmadinejad rather than Maliki, Putin rather than an Eastern European elected prime minister, a Turkish Islamist rather than a Greek elected prime minister. The former all gain attention by their hostility, the latter earn neglect by their moderation and generally pro-American views. Praising Islam abroad is a lot more catchy than praising democracy — one boldly inspires Bush’s critics, the other sheepishly dovetails with Bush’s agenda. All that, in varying degrees, also explains the troubling neglect of the Iranians in the street.

One mystery remains: Does Obama do this because the squeaky problem gets the attention, or does he really empathize with the tired anti-colonial, anti-imperialist, and anti-capitalist refrain of those who used to be considered hostile?

Rich Lowry, Obama's Fantastical Realism:

If only the Obama administration considered motorcycle-riding thugs beating demonstrators in Iran an offense on par with Israel’s West Bank settlements.

Then it could speak with moral passion. It could unmistakably denounce the killings, and relieve its State Department spokesman of the trouble of dancing around the word “condemn.” It could say that our relationship with the Iranian government depends on the unconditional end of its thuggery. It could explain that only if Iran stops the crackdown can we “move forward” in the Middle East.

But Iran is not an ally of the United States. Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei gets a rhetorical pass that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu doesn’t. As hundreds of thousands of Iranian protesters march for democracy, in defiance of a government that is our committed enemy, Pres. Barack Obama resorts to lawyerly equivocations. He labors to avoid saying anything denoting untoward disapproval of the baton-wielding shock troops of Iran’s theocracy.

James Taranto, Their Name is Basij:

The Iranian regime is using nonuniformed thugs to impose its will on the population. These are the tactics of a terrorist organization, not a legitimate government.
During his press conference today, President Obama declared that "we have provided a path whereby Iran can reach out to the international community, engage, and become a part of international norms":

"It is up to them to make a decision as to whether they choose that path. What we've been saying over the last several days, the last couple of weeks, obviously is not encouraging in terms of the path that this regime may choose to take."

The truth is, what we've seen over the past 30 years is not encouraging. A regime that takes foreign diplomats hostage, uses children in combat, threatens to wipe another country off the map, and uses terrorist tactics against its countrymen has shown its determination to flout international norms.

"We must . . . bear witness," says Obama. This entails acknowledging evil as well as celebrating the courage of genuine martyrs like Neda. Obama could do a lot of good simply by giving a speech describing the Iranian regime's departures from international norms starting in 1979. In the process, he might even learn something himself.

Michael Barone, The Adolescent Angst of Barack Obama:

Back in July 2007, Obama said that he would meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other tyrants without preconditions. Grownup squares like George W. Bush wouldn't talk to these guys, so as the avatar of the generation of hope and change, Obama would. Obama figured he was cool enough to get the mullahs to agree to renounce nuclear weapons and all that hate stuff.

Obama has held to this ever since. Before June 12, he said he would give the Iranian leaders till the end of the year to be enchanted. When millions of Iranians started demonstrating in the streets, denouncing the obvious election fraud and in some cases calling for an end to the regime, his initial responses verged on stony indifference.

He expressed "deep concern" but said he didn't want to "meddle." He issued a statement on June 20 calling on the Iranian government "to stop all violent and unjust actions." Finally, in a hastily called news conference Tuesday, he for the first time uttered the verb "condemn"
and said he was moved by the video of YouTube martyr Neda Soltan being shot down by the mullahs' gunmen.

But he clearly hasn't abandoned his policy of seeking the good opinion of tyrants.

Jonah Goldberg, Obama's Iran Policy Is a Bomb:

Here is the one immutable fact of Barack Obama’s foreign-policy agenda as it relates to Iran: It’s over. The rule book he came in with is as irrelevant as a tourist guide to the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

If the forces of reform and democracy win, Obama’s plan to negotiate with the regime is moot, for the regime will be gone. And if the forces of reform are crushed into submission by the regime, Obama’s plan is moot, because the regime will still be there.
In his press conference Tuesday, the president finally condemned the outrages in Iran in terms he should have used a week ago. But he also kept alive the idea that the current Iranian regime could be a fruitful negotiation partner, despite what has already happened in that country. “It’s not too late,” Obama explained, for the regime to negotiate with the international community. He wouldn’t even cancel plans to invite Iranian officials to Fourth of July barbecues at American embassies.

That amounts to tacit approval of the bloodshed and fraud that we’ve already seen and acceptance of the ultimate triumph of the regime. And it won’t work.

Monday, June 22, 2009

This Week - In Related News...

NV Senator John Ensign admits to an affair:

It is the first time Mr. Ensign’s office has commented on various reports that the husband, Doug Hampton, had demanded cash from the senator after learning of Mr. Ensign’s relationship with his wife, Cindy Hampton. Both Hamptons, and even their son Brandon, had worked at the Senate and political offices of Mr. Ensign, who came forward to admit the relationship on Tuesday.

In Huntington, West Virginia:

A Tuesday evening prostitution sting led police to file an arrest warrant against the husband of suspected prostitute Amber Nicole Billups of Huntington. She was one of three women arrested.

The 23-year-old woman told police her husband, Kevin Glen Billups, was her pimp.

Sweetness & Light discovery: the New York Times releases a poll on national socialized health care. To get the message they prefer, they polled those that voted 48% for Obama and 25% for McCain.

Also at Sweetness & Light: Iran's Numbers Don't Add Up. Quoting from a Chatham House report - here:

In two Conservative provinces, Mazandaran and Yazd, a turnout of more than 100% was recorded.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Karl's Weekend Reading

WalpinGate is what they are calling it. You wouldn't know this, as the MSM is covering it all up. The firing of federal Inspector General Gerald Walpin. The WSJ offers the best summary on the topic: The White House Fires a Watchdog.In adition to the obligatory quote, we'll post the names of some losers mentioned in the article. Nothing like having your name in lights!

...Mr. Walpin wrote a 29-page report, signed by two other senior members of his office, and submitted it in April to Congress. Last Wednesday, he got a phone call from a White House lawyer telling him to resign within an hour or be fired.
President Obama.
NBA star Kevin Johnson.
Career prosecutor with US Attorney's office, Lawrence Brown.
Obama fundraiser, Alan Solomont.
Special counsel for the President, Norman Eisen.
White House Council, Gregory Craig.
First Lady, Michelle Obama.
Americorp's senior advisor, Jackie Norris.
...the evidence suggests that his White House fired a public official who refused to roll over to protect a Presidential crony.

Editors at the State Media offices of the Washington Post published an unauthorized and hateful editorial on healthcare reform, The President's Health Care Promises. Whoops!

The government is good at "saving" money by simply reimbursing Medicare and Medicaid providers for less than their cost. It is essentially a tax that the government imposes - a tax that doctors and hospitals pay for staying in business. But this tax raises doctors' and hospitals' costs, forcing them to charge private patients more to compensate for the lost Medicare and Medicaid revenue.

In the short run, these higher costs will force more people out of private insurance and into Mr. Obama's proposed government-provided insurance. In the longer run, as fewer people carry private insurance, it disappears and there is no one to pay this tax. With the profit motive removed, there will be fewer hospitals and fewer doctors practicing medicine. That means less health care to go around.

One of our favorite Townhall columnists, Laura Hollis, writes Governance By Destruction. Read it all - click here. Her clarity is both rare and refreshing. One question: Is it hateful to discuss the things liberals progressives communists hate?

Liberals profess to “love” all kinds of things: whales, polar bears, snail darters, the planet. Strangely, few of them are human. Or anything that makes humans’ lives better. What seems to drive most liberals is hatred and a need for control. What they control, they destroy. And there are few things they hate as much as American business.
We should not be surprised that liberalism’s approaches to business are failures. Consider its 40-year reign over our social policies, and witness the legacy:

Liberals wanted to redefine marriage and remake the family. The result? A divorce rate that now hovers between 45 – 50%, a precipitous decline in the number of two-parent households (a primary indicator of poverty), a birthrate that barely replaces the population (with corresponding devastating consequences for Social Security) and an illegitimacy rate of close to 40% (among African-Americans it is over 70%). Need we mention welfare’s role in all of this?
Liberals have hated the internal combustion engine...
They hate farming.
They hate pharmaceutical companies.
They hate power companies.
They hate the military.
...they hate guns and ammunition...
They hate the Judeo-Christian tradition.
For decades, liberalism has crept surreptitiously through our courts, our educational system and our media. Now, with the election of Barack Obama and a Democrat-controlled Congress, liberalism is in full glory and ascendant. All the things they have loathed in private, they can now assail in public. And American businesses are at the top of the list.

Adding to the topic two posts down - Operation Vigilent Eagle - James Taranto responds to Bonnie Erbe's call for "ridding the Internet and the public dialouge of hate speech".

This is not Islamist Iran or communist Cuba or some tin-pot military dictatorship. Our government does not simply round people up. It cannot deprive people of their liberty without a legal basis to do so, and it has no authority to punish people merely for expressing political views, no matter how odious.

Link to Taranto's video on this subject.

Monday Afternoon Cigar

Sorry for the lack of posts this week. Busy at work. Here is our pic from Monday's Santa Damiana.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Operation Vigilant Eagle

From today's WSJ: FBI Seeks to Target Lone Extremists. It appears the FBI has some extra time on its hands, so why not pursue non-criminals that may do something bad based on little to no common traits or behavior? Or, are the traits known, but not acknowledged?

The FBI is "trying to identify a potential lone wolf before he or she would act out violently," Michael Ward, the bureau's deputy assistant director for counterterrorism, said in an interview earlier this year.

The lone-wolf initiative is one element of a broader strategy to fight domestic terrorism, dubbed "Operation Vigilant Eagle," launched late last year in response to what the memo identified as "an increase in recruitment, threatening communications, and weapons procurement by white supremacy extremist and militia/sovereign citizen extremist groups."

Some questions come to mind:

If there is recruitment, how can it be lone-wolf?

Threatening communication should be taken seriously, and we think it is today. Will the FBI change how it responds to these messages today?

Last, don't white supremists already own weapons? Why should the FBI worry about someone buying his 2nd, or 50th, gun?

Neither man appears to have been active in groups that might have tipped off authorities to the danger. In the search for potentially violent individual extremists, "an emphasis should be placed on the identification of individuals who have been ostracized from a group for their radical beliefs," the FBI memo said.

Would that include bloggers that call Obama a "Socialist" or "Communist"? We've been called "Right Wing Nut" and "Stupid" by so-called 'conservative' thinkers (link to posts).

The stepped-up attention to the issue in recent months is part of a broader worry about rising threats and violence from political extremists.
... recent lone-wolf cases include the killing of a soldier in Little Rock, Ark., last month, allegedly by a converted Muslim extremist, Abdulhakim Muhammad.

Should we take offense to the "political extremists" label?

Speaking of political extremism, here is today's snapshot of our current Ushanka.us Comrade Survey:

James Taranto comments on lib Paul Krugman's recent warning of right-wing extremists in his NYT column:

There is a bit of truth to what Krugman is saying: The right is generally out of sorts these days, and crackpot conspiracy theories are more prominent than they used to be on the right, just as they were more prominent on the left--often promoted by Krugman himself--during the Bush years. Such crackpottery is baneful, but it is characteristic of parties and political movements when they are out of power.
We can think of someone else whose published rants included attacks on "neocons." We won't name names, but the guy is a former Enron adviser. The Washington Post quotes a von Brunn scribbling: "Obama does what his Jew owners tell him to do." That sounds a lot like left-wing extremist Jeremiah Wright the other day, although the Associated Press reports that Wright now says he meant to say "Zionists" rather than "Jews." (Had he consulted the Anti-Semitic Manual of Style, he would have known that "Zionist" is the preferred term when trying to sound respectable.)

Yes, there is a sense in which von Brunn appears to be a man of the "right." But as we've noted, political space is non-Euclidean, so that the extremes on one side tend to converge with the extremes on the other side. Linking von Brunn to mainstream conservatives--even to comparatively truculent ones--is a real stretch.

And Jonah Goldberg comments in his NRO article, A Silly Game of Connect-The-Dots:

But, of course, we have Sarah Palin to thank for von Brunn. So says some genius at the Daily Kos. A competing braniac at the Huffington Post says, “Thank you very much Karl Rove and your minions.” Pretty much the entire media establishment is comfortable labeling von Brunn as a member of the “far right.” Putting aside other objections to that nomenclature, if von Brunn is a member of the far right, then it would be helpful and journalistically responsible if the press would start calling Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich, Sean Hannity, et al., moderates and centrists.

That won’t happen, because the whole point of these exercises is to paint the Right as an undifferentiated blob of evil.

Photos - top to bottom:

Theodore Kacynski - Unabomber, Berkeley Professor, Political: probably liberal
James von Brunn - Holocaust Museum shooter, 9-11 Truther, Jew-Hater, Political: probably liberal
Scott Roeder - Dr. Tiller shooter, Pro-Life except when shooting people, Jew-hater, Neocon-hater, Political: Kusinich supporter?
Abdulhakin Muhammad - Shooter of Army recruiters, convicted criminal, muslim convert, Political: probably liberal

Maybe the FBI could find some commonality among the previous nuts to help them narrow their search for the next nuts.

Just because a blind squirrel finds a nut now and then, doesn't mean our tax dollars should be used paying blind squirrels to find the random nut.

And the real worry, the motivation behind this post: those blind squirrels may find others that feel, smell or taste like nuts, and therefore infringe on those non-nuts' freedom. Been known to happen...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

N. Korea

We can summarize options into three possible strategies for dealing with North Korea - all with the intent of precipitating a collapse and peninsula re-unification:

1) Direct Diplomatic Engagement. Bring pressure on the criminal regime by freezing or seizing assets when/where possible, stifling missile and counterfeit currency exports, and through consistent international condemnation of human rights abuses and illicit activities.

2) Do Nothing. Do not comment on or act on any North Korean action. Ignore the missile and nuclear tests, and all their bluster.

3) Quarantine & Forced Collapse. Saturate their coast and airspace with intent to trigger a military response or regime implosion. This includes shooting down all future missile tests, boarding all vessels that leave N. Korean waters and confiscating all weapons and weapons-related materials. Announce US intentions and preparations to use tactical nuclear weapons along the DMZ and missile sites in order to protect both Seoul from artillery attack or invasion, and neighbors from missile attack.

We have advocated the Do Nothing strategy in a previous post - here. We thought this was the Administration's 'strategy' by default, as previous actions have demonstrated, plus our belief that Obama and his team do not have the discipline, values, nor courage to pursue either of the other two options.

We also question Obama's alignment to our premise above: that the collapse of the commie regime is preferred to continued threatening behavior. Maybe an ongoing international crisis is preferred?

The missile and nuke tests of last month were followed by Obama's 'Do Nothing' approach. If those actions cannot trigger concern, then we assumed nothing would.

Now, weeks later, Secretary Clinton is sending signals that the US will react in a harsh manner if tests continue. A shift to strategy #1 above?

Bottom line: today's Democrats suck at national security. It is not strategy to let a tyrant's actions dictate your supposed 'leadership'... after the fact. Nor is it 'leadership' to pick a strategy (#2), then shift to another strategy (#1) on a whim, only to shift back to the original strategy once the Communist has settled down been paid off.

We think the risks have gone up since the Administration's recent posturing. They, and the world, had a good thing going when they tried to ignore this problem.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

An Open Letter to Our President

Written by Lou Prichett. Posted, in full, at Snopes blog - here.

Dear President Obama:

You are the thirteenth President under whom I have lived and unlike any of the others, you truly scare me.

You scare me because after months of exposure, I know nothing about you.
You scare me because you have never run a company or met a payroll.

You scare me because you have never had military experience, thus don't understand it at its core.

You scare me because you lack humility and 'class', always blaming others.

You scare me because you are a cheerleader for the 'blame America' crowd and deliver this message abroad.

300 million Americans. One who can summarize everything in a simple letter.

Blogging Reminder

Do not convey strong feelings about your freedoms, or love for freedom, in your blog.

Do not encourage your blog readers to share your strong feelings about freedom.

Do not hold elected officials accountable to their oath, or their actions in office.

Especially if you fall right-of-center on the political spectrum.

HARTFORD, Conn. - A New Jersey blogger who urged readers to "take up arms" against Connecticut lawmakers and who suggested government officials should "obey the Constitution or die" surrendered Thursday on a charge of inciting violence.

Harold "Hal" Turner, a former radio talk show host from North Bergen who broadcasts commentary on his Web site, was angry over legislation that would have given lay members of Roman Catholic churches in Connecticut more control over their parish's finances.

His blog is offline, now a permanent entry on Google's hate-site list, no doubt. Of course, islamo-facist videos celebrating actual murders of US citizens still circulate on YouTube...

His offending statements:

It is our intent to forment direct action against these individuals personally.
These beastly government officials should be made an example of as a warning to others in government: Obey the Constitution or die.

He also threatened to post the home addresses of the politicians on his site, like they were greedy AIG executives. As if!!

Ok, Turner's musings may be a bit strong. You won't hear language like that at Ushanka.us.

Unless we're talking about Islamic terrorists.

Or, any terrorists.

Or commie leaders in Cuba, N. Korea or China that put the state over human rights and liberty.

Or anybody that wants to kill or oppress one or more freedom-loving persons.

We hope the authorities will let us wear our Commie Obama Rally Cap in our mug shot.

Link - MSNBC story

Friday, June 12, 2009

Karl's Weekend Reading

As we continue to write the last chapter in US History here at Ushanka.us, two items deserve attention as two of the main components of Obama's destruction of the US as it was intended: monetary policy and entrepreneurship.

Arthur B. Laffer writes in the WSJ, Get Ready for Inflation and Higher Interest Rates: The unprecedented expansion of the money supply could make the '70s look benign.

But as bad as the fiscal picture is, panic-driven monetary policies portend to have even more dire consequences. We can expect rapidly rising prices and much, much higher interest rates over the next four or five years, and a concomitant deleterious impact on output and employment not unlike the late 1970s.
Reduced demand for money combined with rapid growth in money is a surefire recipe for inflation and higher interest rates. The higher interest rates themselves will also further reduce the demand for money, thereby exacerbating inflationary pressures. It's a catch-22.
Alas, I doubt very much that the Fed will do what is necessary to guard against future inflation and higher interest rates. If the Fed were to reduce the monetary base by $1 trillion, it would need to sell a net $1 trillion in bonds. This would put the Fed in direct competition with Treasury's planned issuance of about $2 trillion worth of bonds over the coming 12 months. Failed auctions would become the norm and bond prices would tumble, reflecting a massive oversupply of government bonds.

If we weren't on the same boat as the current generation of corporate liberal elites that voted for this administration, we'd be laughing ourselves silly. They fell for the liberal trick: Vote for us because what you have today under Republican leadership - we can make better! Well, we're less than 6 months into that plan. How's it working for you?

There are two reasons why the top rungs in corporate America have been traditionally Republican - 1) to preserve the environment that allowed their success, and 2) to give future leaders the same fair shot they had. Well, idiots that run most of the businesses in Silicon Valley chose to differentiate themselves from their predecessors last November, and it will not surprise us to see the pendulum jolt back, assuming there is still such thing as private business in 2012.

Michael S. Malone warns "Be careful what you wish for" in his Pajamas Media post, The Obama Surprise:

The first surprise to many Valleyites is how innately anti-entrepreneurial the new Administration has turned out to be. Candidate Obama looked like a high tech executive - smart, hip, a gadget freak - and he certainly talked pro-entrepreneur. But the reality of the last six months has been very different. One might have predicted that he would use the best tool in his economic arsenal - new company creation and the millions of new jobs those firms in turn create - to fight this recession. But President Obama has instead appeared to be almost exclusively interested in Big Business as the key to economy recovery.
...the tech giants are now discovering they may have made a devil’s bargain. The Administration’s brute force handling of the Chrysler and GM take-overs, seemingly violating contract law in the process; its mutterings about managing executive bonuses; its creation of industry czars without the need for Congressional approval; and the prospect of endless debt, economic stagnation and runaway inflation waiting in the wings - all have to be making the same CEOs pretty darn nervous these days . . . and asking themselves if they’ve made a terrible mistake.

Gun Control via EPA?

Ruger to be fined $250,000.

We heard a rumor lately regarding the current ammo shortage: The EPA has restricted production to only the amount needed for military and law enforcement needs, and the manufacturers will be fined or have operations halted if production exceeds those levels.

We got a chuckle out of that, as we fully believe the shortages are due to higher demand - military, law enforcement and civilian.

Then we read this at Say Uncle, quoting an AP article:

The federal government has proposed over $255,000 in fines against a New Hampshire firearms manufacturing center alleging 60 safety and health violations between November and May.

Gun Control doesn't have the votes in Congress.
Clinton's threats of law suits failed spectacularly.
And citizens aren't lining up to turn-in their firearms.

Is there any other way to disarm those hateful proletarians?

NYT - "Aged News"

A funny Daily Show clip:

Jason Jones: What is black, white, and red all over?
Bill Keller (NYT Editor): A newspaper.
Jason Jones: No. Your balance sheet.

UT: TechCrunch

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Note to MSM

Keep well-spoken conservatives off of your networks. MSNBC re-learned this little lesson yesterday when they invited John Ziegler:


And not to just knock the government run media. Let's see how the libs behave on the other side of the equation:

Those darn conservatives - getting in the way of the proletarian dictatorship...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Anonymous Bloggers

We dedicate this post to bloggers Ed Morrisey and SondraK, both owners of the 'fascionable' Commie Obama Rally Cap and ardent defenders of the anonymous blogger.

Morrisey started the poll above at HotAir, and discussed the recent outing of an anonymous blogger. He comments on his early anonimity:

When I first began blogging, I used a semi-pseudonym, a nickname I’d had for two decades before blogging, for much the same reason as Publius. I worked in the corporate world and not academia, but I didn’t want my firm’s customers or my staff to get uncomfortable working with me. My family already knew about the blogging, so that wasn’t a motivation for me, but otherwise I completely understand why Publius wanted to retain his anonymity. My success eventually outed me, and it did cause me some problems — most of which were self-inflicted — but I’m happy about how it worked out since, for obvious reasons. Had someone else outed me instead, I would have been furious, and for good reasons.

SondraK chimes in at KnowledgeIsPower:

Bloggers should worry less about the anonymity of bloggers (which isn’t a “bane” at all) and respond to the arguments instead — or ignore them.

Our motivation: we don't want a Google search to show a future employer 3000 hits of partisan babble. It would be relatively easy to find our identity and liberals are encouraged to try since their instinct is to find any reason to avoid debating our positions. 640 posts in three years and not one retraction or correction, just a couple naive predictions and one very cool hat.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Longer Lines, More Hope

Watch for these new posters at your local Post Office and GM dealership!

U/T: Michelle

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Friday, June 05, 2009

Found on the Web Today

Obama's first directive to his employees at GM - "Stop making cars, and start making t-shirts!". Even less profitable than washing machines, which the Soviets made in their military factories. $19.99. Oh, and remember, Obama is not a socialist! UT: Drudge

Steve Gilbert at Sweetness & Light gives us the unemployment graph. Imagine what this will look like in a year... Click here to read his write-up.

Say Uncle reports that some Tennessee restaurants do not like the new law that allows concealed carry licensees to carry heat in their restaurants, and that they've posted signs barring those with background checks and clean criminal histories. He is starting a list of the gun-free-zone restaurants - here.

Karl's Weekend Reading

Two big events this week: GM's bankruptcy & nationalization, and Obama's speed in Cairo. Plus the Sotomayer nomination is gaining speed.

Obama Cairo Speech - Hanson at NRO, The Age of Middle East Atonement:

His speech essentially amounted to: “We did that, you did this, tit-for-tat, now we’re even, and can’t we all just get along?” He should be congratulated for expressing a desire for peace and for gently reminding the Muslim world of the way to reform, even if he did so while inflating Western sins.

Obama Cairo Speech - Krauthammer at Townhall, The Settlements Canard:

In his much-heralded "Muslim world" address in Cairo Thursday, Obama declared that the Palestinian people's "situation" is "intolerable." Indeed it is, the result of 60 years of Palestinian leadership that gave its people corruption, tyranny, religious intolerance and forced militarization; leadership that for three generations -- Haj Amin al-Husseini in 1947, Yasser Arafat in 2000, Abbas in December 2008 -- rejected every offer of independence and dignity, choosing destitution and despair rather than accept any settlement not accompanied by the extinction of Israel.

In the 16 years since the Oslo accords turned the West Bank and Gaza over to the Palestinians, their leaders -- Fatah and Hamas alike -- built no schools, no roads, no courthouses, no hospitals, no institutions that would relieve their people's suffering. Instead they poured everything into an infrastructure of war and terror, all the while depositing billions (from gullible Western donors) into their Swiss bank accounts.

Obama says he came to Cairo to tell the truth. But he uttered not a word of that.

GM Nationalization - Hewitt at Townhall, Stopping Government Motors:

President Obama's decision to seize General Motors and convert it into Government Motors is as shocking as it is unpopular. Polling shows, like the president's stubborn insistence that Gitmo be closed and its terrorist prisoners brought stateside, the president's insistence that GM be nationalized is appalling to large majorities of Americans. The socialization of America's biggest brand is not the sort of decision that can be cloaked in head-faking rhetoric. What had been a private company on the verge of bankruptcy is now a government actor competing against private sector companies and using the federal treasury as an enormous unfair advantage in the marketplace. Even if the cost itself was not so staggering, the idea of the federal government declaring itself on the side of one of many competitors is as distasteful as it is unprecedented. It must be reversed.

Sotomayer - Sowell at NRO, Harlem, Then and Now:

There were standards for getting into the projects of those days and, if you didn’t live up to those standards, they put you out. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was quoted as saying, “When kids played on the grass, their parents would get a warning.” That seems almost quaint when you think of what has gone on in the housing projects of a later era.

Since there has been so much talk of putting some of Sonia Sotomayor’s inflammatory words “in context,” perhaps we should put her personal life in context, if the media insist on making her personal life a factor in her nomination to the Supreme Court. While she grew up in a public housing project, the words “housing project” in that era did not mean anything like the housing projects of today.

Sotomayer - Hanson at NRO, Sotomayor's Mistake:

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has scolded Americans for being “cowards” and not talking more about race. Now, Holder is getting that “dialogue” with the recent controversy surrounding President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Sonia Sotomayor.
Aside from Sotomayor’s notion that federal jobs should be parceled out on the basis of race, what exactly does she mean in an America that is intermarrying, integrating, and assimilating as never before?

And why were the same people who now hold up Sotomayor’s background as a qualification for the Supreme Court so quick, when George W. Bush was president, to rally to deny Miguel Estrada a court-of-appeals judgeship?

Have a great weekend!

Dr. Tiller

Our opinion of Dr. Tiller is captured somewhere within these five links. Two from the wacky left, Daily Kos and Democrat Underground, and two from right wing nuts, Ann Coulter and Wizbang. The last from one of the Doctor's patients. Are we objective, or what?!


Democrat Underground:

The murder of Dr. Tiller was an act of terror. Although its immediate victim was a man, it was aimed at women's hearts and minds, designed to shatter our oneness and assert control. And it is part of a larger campaign of terror—if we must throw that word around then let us use it where it truly applies. When the murderer squeezes the trigger, when Bill O’Reilly thunders on Fox News or Randall Terry pontificates, they are sending the same message to women, “Your bodies, your fertility, your sexuality must remain under our control, or you will die, along with anyone who helps you.”

Ann Coulter, owner of our Commie Obama hat:

...the killing of about one abortionist per decade leads liberals to condemn the entire pro-life movement as "domestic terrorists." At least liberals have finally found some terrorists they'd like to send to Guantanamo.

Tiller bragged about performing 60,000 abortions, including abortions of viable babies, able to survive outside the mother's womb. He made millions of dollars performing late-term abortions so gruesome that only two other abortionists -- not a squeamish bunch -- in the entire country would perform them.

And Wizbang (graphic images):

Wichita abortionist George Tiller offers a memorial service in his facility after he performs a partial-birth abortion. The mom and the dad in the pictures below paid Tiller a few thousand dollars to kill Tess, their baby girl.

Kelly, former Tiller patient:

And about the third or fourth day Dr. Tiller came in and injected into the amniotic sack a saline solution, which suffocated and burned my baby to death. And on the last day they put you in a room with other women — there's, like, maybe six to 10 beds in a big room. And every woman is lying there. And they kind of go down the line and whatever's ready, you know, they decide that you're dilated enough and they put you in wheelchair and wheel you out to another room.

And in this other room there's basically a toilet, and they told me to sit on the toilet, lean on the nurse, and push, push my baby into a toilet.
I'm disgusted that women are told that they have a choice, yet no one tells us what that choice is or what that choice is going to do to us or to the baby, for that matter.

Communism: Multiple countries, 92 years, 100 million and counting
Abortion: Within the US, 37 years, 49 million and counting

But really. Who's counting?

Cairo Speech, and Moral Equivalency

Obama gave a speech this week in Cairo. Charles Krauthammer opines:

...the speech was so abstract, and vapid, and self-absorbed...

U/T: HotAir

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

The "S" Word

as reviewed by blogger, Eric, at Classical Values:

In theory, "socialism" is still a perfectly legitimate word, but I worry that it is becoming delegitimized. As it is, the responsible critics of Barack Obama's economic programs are very, very careful not to use the word "socialist," and if they do, it is only to distance themselves from those who call Barack Obama a socialist.

Even as it excoriated his policies, The Economist recently defended Barack Obama against the charge that he's a socialist, because

"No true leftist would be as allergic as he has been to nationalising tottering banks, nor as coldly calculating in letting Chrysler, and probably General Motors, end up in bankruptcy court."

Sorry, but this avoids an important issue. At what point can nationalization be said to have taken place? By what standard is government ownership of 72% of a company less than "true" socialism?

Legitimate questions from an objective thinker, or just more rancid words from another "stupid" "right wing nut"?

Monday, June 01, 2009

GM, Obligatory Post

Ahh, peace and quiet. Albeit for a short time. The loud mouths screaming "Obama is not a socialist" are sleeping in today. Why strain the ol vocal cords on the day Obama takes a 70% stake in a major American corporation?

Ion Mihai Pacepa, former Communist and Romanian Chief of Intelligence, and only author with two books in our library to your left, writes in today's WSJ, What I learned as a Car Czar:

They say history repeats itself. If you are like me and have lived two lives, you have a good chance of seeing the re-enactment with your own eyes. The current takeover of General Motors by the U.S. government and United Auto Workers makes me think back to Romania's catastrophic mismanagement of the car factories it built jointly with the French companies Renault and Citroen. I was Romania's car czar.

When the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu decided in the mid-1960s that he wanted to have a car industry, he chose me to start the project rolling. In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. I knew nothing about manufacturing cars, but neither did anyone else among Ceausescu's top men.
In 1945, the British voters, tired of four years of war, kicked out Winston Churchill and elected a leftist parliament led by Labour's Clement Attlee. Attlee nationalized the automobile, trucking and coal industries, as well as communication facilities, civil aviation, electricity and steel. Britain was already saddled by crushing war debts. Now it was sapped of economic vigor. The old empire quickly passed into history. It would take decades until Margaret Thatcher's privatization reforms restored Britain's place among the world's top-tier economies.

The United States is far more powerful than Great Britain was then, and no American Attlee should be capable of destroying its solid economic and political base. I hope that the U.S. administration, Congress and the American voters will take a closer look at history and prevent our automotive industry from following down the Dacia [picture below], Oltcit or Jaguar path.

From today's WSJ Editorial, The Obama Motor Co.:

GM, we are told, will now be able to make a profit and some day even return money to taxpayers. If you close your eyes and imagine that GM's private managers would be able to make decisions based solely on business judgment, you can even start to believe.

But then you snap out of it.
[From the print edition, but missing from the online version. Why?] Now that the government owns GM, it's only a matter of time before Congress starts to micromanage its business judgements. Every decision to close a plant will be second-guessed, much like a military base-closing. And what about buying parts from foreign suppliers? Will those also be banned when Mr. Gettelfinger [UAW head] demands it, even if the costs are lower? GM's managers and directors will have one eye on enhancing shareholder value, but the other on maintaining their political viability in Washington.
The larger corruption will be when government tries to vindicate its ownership by favoring GM over Ford and the other auto makers that aren't wards of the state. The TARP legislation contained one blatant example in the form of a $7,500 tax credit for consumers who buy GM's new electric car, the Chevy Volt. Expect more such favoritism, including huge new subsidies for green cars if consumers prove resistant to their charms.

Mr. Obama likes to say he's a pragmatist who only prefers a government solution when it will work. But in resurrecting an industrial auto policy that even the French long ago abandoned, the President has made himself GM's de facto CEO. Our guess is that he'll come to regret it as much as taxpayers will.

A picture of the East German Trabi:

None of this would have happened if we had had National Health Care this past decade.

Our question: Who will buy a 2010 Corvette?