Sunday, November 29, 2009

Private Sector Experience in the Obama Cabinet

Why am I not surprised that a pro-government anti-individual liberty person such as Obama would stack his cabinet with people with NO private sector experience.

This examination of Presidential cabinet members "includes secretaries of State, Commerce, Treasury, Agriculture, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Energy, and Housing & Urban Development, and excludes Postmaster General, Navy, War, Health, Education & Welfare, Veterans Affairs, and Homeland Security—432 cabinet members in all."

The Journal of the American Enterprise Institute

Unbelieveable, isn't it? In a time where the economy matters more than most; when the most important piece of legislation has tremendous private sector impact the man in charge of it all has no private sector experience and is surrounded by others with little to no private sector experience.

Is the Global Warming Hoax Finally Over?

This stupidity, building for close to two decades, might now be about dead with the leaked emails.

five frontbenchers from Australia’s opposition Liberal party have resigned their portfolios rather than follow their leader Malcolm Turnbull in voting with Kevin Rudd’s Government on a new Emissions Trading Scheme. ...

The ETS is Australia’s version of America’s proposed Cap and Trade and the EU’s various carbon reduction schemes...

Climategate: five Aussie MPs lead the way by resigning in disgust over carbon tax

Rifqa Bary needs your support.

Now, as an atheist, why should I care? Why would I bother spending my time promoting her cause? Because I believe in individual freedom. If one cannot express ones belief, especially in something as banal as professing a belief in Christ, then what is America? Where is the First Amendment?

To anyone who proclaims any love of individual liberty or even that bastardized concept "civil rights" (after all what rights do you have as being part of a group do you not have as an individual?) how could one not be outraged at the process and most disturbingly, the lack of media attention?

It is disturbing for the future of this country that this story is mainly found in the Christian media. It once again promotes the view that the Left can tolerate the intolerable from other religions but has nothing but disdain for Christianity. If ever there is to be a rise of a militant Christianity it will be exacerbated because of the disgusting behavior of the left, especially those fools in the media.

I promote this alternative story, that a girl from a fundamentalist Christian sect converted to Islam (or even better - denied the existence of God); that she left home because of fear of physical reprisal from her parents and people associated with her religion. Do you not think we would all know her name, the brave little girl who rejected an intolerant religion and just wanted to live in peace elsewhere? Do you not think that this story would be repeated over and over ad nauseum in the media?

If you haven't heard of this story before you can read about here

Muslim teen fears for life after changing religion

The Civilian Prosecution of KSM

We "all" agree that Miranda rights do not have to be followed by the US Army. So which others parts of the civilian protection established by the constitution will not have to be followed by the army?  Now that we have chosen to dispense with the Fifth Amendment which other parts of the Constitution will we dispense in our trial of KSM?

If an individual cannot be afforded all the rights and privileges of the US Constitution he should not be tried by a civilian court.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Girl Escorted to School: 1960 and 2009

This post circulated through the net so you may have seen it. I think it says a lot about race relations and how things have changed in barely one generation. I don't like President Obama's policies but I am very pleased with what his election means regarding America's Original Sin.

THEN: A Black girl escorted to school - 1960

On November 14, 1960, nearly 49 years ago, 6 year old Ruby Bridges faced hostile crowds, and had to be escorted by U.S. Marshalls , because she was the first black child to attend previously all-white William Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans , Louisiana . Ruby was 6 years old. (The Great Norman Rockwell created the painting above depicting that event.)

That morning, she had only been told by her mother that she was going to be attending a new school that day and 'had better behave.' Little did little Ruby know that she would be bombarded with jeers and even death threats; and that she would end up being the sole child in her first grade class because all the other children were kept home by their parents. All because Ruby was Black.

NOW:  A Black girl escorted to school - 2009

On January 5, 2009, nearly 49 years after Ruby attended her school, 7 year old Sasha Obama, faced cheering schoolmates as she is escorted by her Mother and U. S. Secret Service Agents to Sidwell Friends Elementary School in Washington , DC . Her Mother, the current First Lady of the United States of America , had Secret Service escort because Sasha's daddy is now the 44th President of the United States , Barack Obama

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Knowledgeable Mr. Gore

What follows is an excerpt of the exchange between Tonight Show host Conan O’Brien and The Knowledgeable Al Gore:

“O'BRIEN: Now, what about ... you talk in the book about geothermal energy...


O'BRIEN: ...and that is, as I understand it, using the heat that's generated from the core of the earth ...

GORE: Yeah.

O'BRIEN: create energy, and it sounds to me like an evil plan by Lex Luthor to defeat Superman. Can you, can you tell me, is this a viable solution, geothermal energy?

GORE: It definitely is, and it's a relatively new one. People think about geothermal energy - when they think about it at all - in terms of the hot water bubbling up in some places, but two kilometers or so down in most places there are these incredibly hot rocks, 'cause the interior of the earth is extremely hot, several million degrees, and the crust of the earth is hot …”

And people think that Palin and Bush are dumb?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Ditch-Digger's Fallacy

A few generations ago, in order to help during a job shortage our government felt that we could help solve this problem by giving people jobs. If we made jobs for people, they would spend money and make jobs for other people. What sort of work would be made. Well, we couldn't have them building bridges or tunnels as this would take away work from unemployed union members. It was decided that these unemployed men (our society was still sexist at the time) would be sent to work digging ditches. Many brilliant people showed that this was a brilliant idea. And, as one can't have ditches all over the place, other people were given jobs filling them back in. As many people were unemployed, many ditches were dug and filled.

It was a great success. Thousands of diggers and fillers were hired. Shovels, backhoes and dumptrucks were bought, thus giving jobs to shovel, backhoe and truck manufacturers. Supervisors, pension fund administrators and payroll people were hired. Buildings were raised for the new workforce. It was agreed among the consultants, and lauded by progressive academics and congressmen, that this was the best way to put people back to work. Huge circular ditches, miles in diameter, were dug, re-filled and paved before being dug-up again. Economists, academics and news personnel reported on the success of the new plan. Everyone knew that as each new digger was hired and paid, he spent his money on clothes, food and paid taxes. Society benefited greatly from this new public works program.

A few callous, unkind people, probably lackeys of the rich, questioned the value in digging ditches, arguing that the money used to pay for the diggers, fillers and administrators came from the taxpayers. They emphasized that this government program did not create wealth, but instead did nothing more than redistribute it. "What did the taxpayers get for their taxes," they asked? " Nothing but thrice emptied and filled ditches." In response to the criticism the digger's union, academics, administrators and politicians angrily replied that it was "cruel and mean-spirited to give tax-breaks to the rich and throw these good people out of work." "We must think of people first, before profits, before taxes," they said.

Anytime one mentions that a government department ought to be cut or eliminated, the final argument used to combat the cut is that by doing so we would throw people out of work. We would then have to pay unemployment benefits for people who moments before were income earning, tax-paying citizens. Thus we not only would be hurting them, but ourselves as well. This is a faulty argument. Anytime one eliminates a non-productive job one is helping, not hurting society. To argue that eliminating patronage and make-work jobs exacerbates the jobless situation, and injures society, is to fall into "The Ditch-Diggers Fallacy."

As ridiculous as it sounds, many people hold strongly to the Ditch-Diggers Fallacy. In doing so they make it nearly impossible to alter the status quo. Programs and old job descriptions become entrenched, even when better ways are available. There are many examples to choose from. A simple example concerns highway and bridge toll booths. We could raise money for our bridges and roads solely from a gas tax and eliminate toll booths, thus saving motorists time and headaches; saving truckers and consumers money; as well as reducing air pollution by eliminating congestion. In addition we would save taxpayers hundred of millions of dollars a year by eliminating toll booth collection.

One of the key reasons that we don't eliminate toll booths is that many people believe that by doing so we would cost toll collectors, supervisors, accountants, and auditors their jobs. "What about all those people being thrown out of work?" "We wouldn't save any money," people would say. "All the savings would go towards paying them unemployment and welfare." "Not only that," others would say, "but it would be cruel to throw good people out of work to save a few dollars." These people have fallen for The Ditch-Digger's Fallacy. If it makes sense to keep toll booth collectors and their supervisors, doing an unnecessary, wasteful job then it makes sense to give people jobs to dig and fill ditches.

There are only two ways of creating wealth: producing something or increasing the efficiency of the economic system: distribution, administration, and finance. Labor is not the source of wealth. If it was then digging huge ditches and filling them back in would be the panacea so many are looking for. All over the world people would be digging and filling ditches, and we would all have everything we need

Mr. BrewMaster

Imagine that you invent a process similar to the Mr. Coffeemaker that allows people to brew beer at home for pennies a glass. Who would benefit? You certainly would. I would, and so too would millions of other beer drinkers. It would save beer drinkers money, and save the environment. Cans and bottles wouldn't have to be transported (saving gas). Cans and bottles wouldn't have to be made (smoke stack pollution); and the aluminum wouldn't have to be mined and smelted. On the surface it kappears to be a great invention, helping the poor and middle class and saving the environment. Unfortunately that is not the case. Budweiser would lose most of its business and people would be laid off. Union brewers would have to be let go, so too would the workers making the aluminum cans. Teamsters would lose their jobs. All these people would have to go on unemployment, at the taxpayer's expense.

What seemed to have been a delightful invention, has turned out instead to throw people out of work and increase the inequity in America. You, and your investors, would become wealthy and great numbers of workers, ordinary Americans, would become poorer. Once again we would see capitalism in action -- the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer. America would have been better off if Mr. Brewmaster had not been invented.

The Mr. Brewmaster is a rhetorical device, but it is representative of the type of thinking common in America's universities and newsrooms. What should be realized is that society would be better off if a Mr. Brewmaster was invented. What was wrong with the objections presented against the Mr. Brewmaster? Why do so many people make those mistakes? The problem is that concrete bound minds focus upon the lost job, not realizing that new jobs have been created. The job to be is an abstraction. The job that exists in the here and now is concrete. New jobs would be created by the Mr. Brewmaster. Somebody would have to make these Brewmasters. While not every brewing, smelting, mining, and teamster job would be replaced by a job in the Brewmaster facility, the money saved by beer drinkers would be saved, thus lessening credit costs for everyone, or spent on clothes, car, travel, movies, buying a house. Thus creating new jobs and opportunities in those industries.

All inventions and processes aid some more than others, and rightly so. Should not those that invent a device, those that recognize its worth, benefit from their work and foresight? There are some who are offended by this proposition. It is this hostility to the products of the human mind and human effort, that has hamstrung mankind since the beginning of human society. They are the true conservatives. Keep things the same, is the unstated argument behind there ry slogans. Change brings problems.

Others fear that the new jobs are never as good as the previous. If this were correct then innovation, by and of itself, would be harmful to society. Society would be better off if it stayed the same, generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation after generation. However, many of these same people now consider education to be the key issue in America. It makes one wonder what they mean by education. Certainly it is not the absorption of empirical facts and concepts based upon these facts. If too many people become educated in such a manner who knows how many technological advances there will be. And technological advances leads to change, and that we can't have.

The unstated argument against change, against innovation, is that it leads away from the egalitarian ideal, where each person is materially, spiritually and politically equal. Education leads, by necessity, to innovation and change. The more highly educated the society the more new jobs will be created and old jobs be eliminated, the more innovative it will be, the more society will be unequal. This is considered evil, and the sign of a dysfunctional society. However we can easily picture the day that even the poorest among us will have a roof over his head, food in the cupboard, running water, electricity, and communication and entertainment opportunities unimaginable a generation ago. Egalitarians will not cheer and have inner happiness at the fact that all humans beings have achieved unprecedented prosperity. They will bemoan the fact that the gap between rich and poor has grown to historical levels.

I proclaim that an egalitarian society is not desirable. It is either a technologically stagnant society, or a repressive society. Live in an agriculturally based, pre-industrial commune if one wants. One may do so, quite easily, within the structure of a laissez-faire society. However, don't force egalitarian ideals upon those that don't subscribe to them. But egalitarians are not, for the most part, content in living a simple, egalitarian life, among people with a similar outlook on life. They want to ensure that all are equal. However, when one promotes a repressive, top-down society in which the government is used to enforce equality, not only is one making a lie of ones claim of ones love for freedom and education but it implies that one wants, or is deliberately ignoring, the only possible result of ones stated ideas -- dictatorship.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fort Hood Shooting

The question of the day seems to be: was this a political act or did this person snap. We can never know his true motivation, all we can do is to look at the evidence and make up our mind from that. Sometimes there is very little evidence and we really cannot formulate a strong opinion regarding a person's motivation; other times there is a fair deal of information. This time we have a fair deal of information.

First and foremost this was a political act. Shouting "Allah Akbar" and shooting military personnel is a political act. Communicating with radical imams (unless done undercover) certainly shows a particular mindset. In the same way if a white man lynches a black man and can be linked to a KKK recruiter it wouldn't be unreasonable to conclude that his actions were based out of racial hatred.

Secondly he did snap. It seems that he was conflicted about his role in the US military and his identity as a Muslim. This being the case, if he was a reasonable man, he should have resigned his commission. The fact that he did not -- and let's face it the military is not a place where one accrues riches -- shows that there is much more to the story.

Some people argue that there was no political component to this story that the poor man absorbed so many horror stories from his patients that when it was his turn to go abroad he simply couldn't take it. I don't buy this. He could have resigned his commission and taken a civilian job. Something compelled him to stay and I don't think it was duty to country and corps.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Obama is not pro Roe v Wade

Rush Limbaugh and many other political commentators are wrong. Obama is not pro-Roe v Wade. Roe v Wade clearly delimits the time in which a doctor may perform an abortion: that time limit is the first trimester. Partial birth abortions, which Obama supports, are far outside this time limit. Clearly then Obama is opposed to Roe v Wade. This is not a matter of semantics. I know that phrase Roe v Wade is often substituted for abortion but Roe v Wade has a definition. If you don’t like it, either because it allows limited abortion rights, or if you don’t like as it limits abortion rights then you are NOT pro-Roe v Wade.