Archive for April 2009
Today, we watched Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania switch parties, after assuring folks over a month ago that he would stay in the Republican Party. This will push the Democrats up to that critical 60 vote mark that would make the Senate filibuster-proof.
Not that the Senate would listen to the GOP anyway, but I guess this means now they can tell the GOP to go pounds sand.
In a statement today, he stated that he would not stand by and let his 29 years of service be decided by the Republican Primary Electorate. Turns out, for captulating to the whims of that dork Harry Reid, he was going down in a 29-point strawman defeat against Pat Toomey, a conservative challenger.
Now Harry Reid has offered Specter something for his trouble – a nice fancy chair within the Democrat party, seniority, a nice office with a view, and more importantly, safety from being removed during a primary.
Of course, with that, he has become a traitor to his party and his own word, selling his soul for stability and survical. This is why politicians can’t be trusted. Specter re-emphasized that just today.
Hey Arlen, you don’t believe in the power of the electorate? Something wrong with democracy? Oh yes, it is for a liberal loser like you. And don’t give us that madness about how much of a moderate and what kinds of convictions you have – since you said just back around mid-March that you would never leave the GOP. I guess your word is worth as much as a tissue with swine flu on it. Good riddance, you pathetic loser. It’s good to see you switch yor party affiliation to what you truly are, a pathetic Democrat turncoat.
Now go caucus with your liberal friends and let the good people in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania elect a new senator, with conviction and principle. It will be so funny if you lost in the next general election and were sent back to Pennsylvania.
If I had my way, you’d be tarred and feathered. But I’m not bitter.
Hopefully more of thes turncoat moderates like Olympia Snowe will follow your lead. Get the RINO’s out. Let’s wash out the lukewarm moderates and get our party back to the party of small-government, low taxes and a strong national defense.
It’s not about how much money is spent, earned, or gained, but who ends up with the value in the end.
Check out this news story. Turns out, in honor of Earth Day (not really sure how this applies, but…) Popeye’s Chicken (which in my mind is far better than KFC!), offered a promotional special on national TV. Eight pieces of their awesome Cajun-cooked goodness, $4.99…in celebration of Earth Day. Again, missing the point here, but hey, I’ll eat Popeye’s and celebrate feel-good environmentalism. Just give me an extra helping of the dirty rice.
Well, it didn’t take long for the lines to go out the door, down the street, with swarms of hungry patrons wanting to take advantage of the deal.
The unfortunate part of this story is that the Minneapolis Popeye’s Chicken on Lake Street, the only one in the entire state of Minnesota, wasn’t participating in the national promotion. Since local proprietors can make the call of whether or not to participate in a national promotion, this Popeye’s declined.
Instead, they had homemade signs on the door that warded customers off, telling them, instead, the special was a nine-piece for $9.99, much to the chagrin of scores of hungry customers, ready to sink their teeth into that awesome Cajun-cooked goodness. (there is a theme developing here, I’m thinking). The customers came from miles around to
celebrate Earth Day feast on what was to be a great deal of yummy chicken priced at 62.5¢ a piece, but instead, were saddened by it being valued at $1.11 per piece. Some people were downright angry, requiring the police to be called in to settle the angry mob down.
Well, I’m not sure what the margins are there at Popeye’s but fast food places watch their margins very carefully. I once met a Taco Bell worker who told me that miniscule variances in how much cheese or beef that goes into your Meximelt or Burrito Supreme can be a big shock to overhead.
Yup, capitalism still works. All that’s required for it to get back on track is to find that price that people will pay because they think they are getting value for their money. What we learn here is that a piece of Popeye’s chicken is worth somewhere between $0.625 and $1.11.
We don’t need the government to keep bailing out companies. Companies just need to learn to make products that people want and will happily unload their wallets to get. It’s not about how much money is spent, earned, or gained, but who ends up with the value in the end. Find the value, and you’ll find the bottom of any recession and the balance point of any economy.
As I write this post, it’s dinner time. And while I’m eating a leftover piece of baked chicken (which is good stuff in its own right) from last night’s supper, I can only lament it’s not Popeye’s. Perhaps if the family goes through a drive-thru, I may have to conduct a night mission of my own.
I just read this article this morning and it got me thinking about something that has been a problem for warfighters for centuries – the changing conditions of people and how it relates to warfighting.
Sun Tzu wrote prolifically in The Art of War that whenever a government (what he labeled as “the sovereign”) gets involved in military decisions, usually that leads to military failure. Sun Tzu pointed out that the Sovereign gives the order to make war and it’s up to the Generals to fight that war, completely and fully. Sun Tzu frowned on the very notion of politicians getting involved in combat operations for one reason: when the time comes to take action, political pressure could cause that warfighter to waver and not do what, militarily, had to be done. This is how liberalism has led to the lack of military effectiveness for centuries.
So, the writer of the mentioned article had this to say:
Reducing risk, and casualties, is at the heart of the drive for more and better robots. Ultimately, that means "fully autonomous engagement without human intervention," according to an Army communication to robot designers. In other words, computer programs, not a remote human operator, would decide when to open fire. What worries some experts is that technology is running ahead of deliberations of ethical and legal questions.
While I’m not particularly ready to cede the launch codes of America’s nuke arsenal to a computer program or setting up SkyNet, it does represent the opposite end of Sun Tzu’s point about external influences into military operations. The point that I make here is that robots and computer programs deployed to take combat action will do so without injecting personal remorse or objection. As the writer of the above article clearly stated, robots don’t care or get demoralized (or energized) if they see a comrade fall. They don’t get tired, hungry, frustrated at failure or overconfident at success. They simply will obey the laws of the sovereign without question, exactly what Sun Tzu believed a soldier should be, carrying out their programming for as long as they are able.
(btw – no discussions here about situational ethics or complex situations governing the robot/program’s actions. The point in this post is very specific)
In a wildly theoretical sense, what would happen if we actually had a computer program set up to make combat decisions? The supports for these decisions would be based on a set of principles that don’t change based on how people are feeling at the time, such as the desire for retaliatory action on 9/12/2001 versus people’s thinking in March 2003 when we went into Iraq, to now, as people are growing more and more tired of war. The program would not tire nor would be prone to extreme ‘sledgehammer-to-swat-a-fly’ measures. The program would not care if the Code Pinkers protested on the front yard of the developer. It would just do as it is told. Personally, if something like that were ever put in place, it might actually change the scope of what warfighting was about and bring it in line with what Sun Tzu was saying.
Today, people can’t fight a war without having external pressures governing how that war is played out.
* As a side note about this, few will remember this one, but we had Mohammed Omar, also known as the “One-Eyed Mullah” in the cross-hairs during the early part of the war. Turns out a Predator drone came up on him getting into a vehicle. We had a clear shot, but our CENTCOM general at the time held fire because the Judge Advocate General (JAG – military lawyer) said he was “uncomfortable” with taking out Omar. Omar remains in hiding with a $10M bounty on his one-eyed head. I’m sure if Sun Tzu was presented with the possibility of taking out one of his key enemy leaders in one shot, he wouldn’t be uncomfortable with it at all.
And we wonder why the war has taken as long as it has…
I guess the TEA parties continue to irritate and annoy the left – and it’s been shy of a week now since they took place.
1) Previously reported here on TRC, Janeane Garofolo spewed her hate and vitriol, calling the TEA parties “racist” and those who attended “dysfunctional, brain-damaged, rednecks”.
2) CNN reporter Susan Roesgen calls them “Anti-CNN, Anti-Government, supported by FoxNews”.
3) David Axelrod said on Meet the Press this past Sunday they are ‘unhealthy’. He cited the 95% tax cut campaign promise (which is nothing more than a red herring for what happens to the net gain in taxes when Obama lets the Bush tax cuts expire.
4) Commentators like Keith Olbermann and Anderson Cooper cracking out the frat-house humor, referring to these events as ‘tea bagging’, not only showing their liberal bias yet again, but showing their contempt for the right standing up.
5) The New Hampshire Democrat Party leader, Ray Buckley, came out and called those that protested an ‘unhinged mob’, ‘looked like they had lost their minds’, and ‘didn’t know what they were protesting’.
What gets me about all of this is that liberals cannot stand someone who sits opposed to their view on things. Conservatives understand that there is room to disagree, and liberals will give lip service to this notion. When they run out of logical things to say (of which that is minimal), they get into spewing vitriol and hate, throwing ad hominem attacks. In fact, I’ve even had it thrown at me here on The Rabid Conservative.
Liberal arguments that I have seen always seem to be replete with logical fallacy, a high degree of emotionalism, and lacking in actual fact. I have to agree with what Rush Limbaugh said on his program today, that all of this hate and rhetoric comes not from logical reason, but feelings of attachment.
These people react in personal rage and anger when I say I hope Obama fails, because their emotional link to Obama tells them that I want them to fail, too, which is just the exact opposite. And they’re going to be hurt more every day now that Obama is revealing himself to be exactly as I have described and predicted, and it hasn’t been clairvoyance. My descriptions and predictions of Obama were based on his past and present statements, his affiliations. You see, what happened? I happened to flush out two kinds of people when I said I hope Obama fails: those who are emotionally invested in Obama (more so than they were invested in their own views and their own country) and I also flushed out those who share Obama and Bill Ayers and Jeremiah Wright’s views of the United States. – Rush Limbaugh, April 20, 2009
But to add to Mr. Limbaugh, what I also see as a driver to this liberal venom and hatred for those who dare criticize That One is the fact that these people have a belief centered in relativism and that adherence to God’s law and Jesus’ teachings is marginalized. While not everyone on the right is biblically-centered, spiritually active (I avoid the term, ‘religious’ since that is a human condition), few people on left demonstrate little care for the teachings of the Bible or anything definitive or absolute, but rather, think they know themselves what is right and wrong. In other words, I have never found a saved, Bible-loving and believing person yet who believes that abortion is a good thing, or that we should let the institution of marriage be thrown to the side.
So, adding these things together, you have someone who is diametrically opposed to true Biblical Christian worldview who can’t tolerate seeing one of their own criticized (even if it’s just). They hate all that oppose them and they aren’t afraid to show it.
And so we see the hate spewed our way, blinding people to the message that actually does bring hope and change.
Are we feeling the hate now? Or maybe we should wait until another liberal complains about how bad we brain-dead rednecks from flyover country are, ranting on about something about which we have no idea. I give it another day for someone else to crawl out of the woodwork
* Interestingly, though, I do think Carville was right in his comments when he said this is ‘damaging to Republicans’. The GOP has done very little in the last eight years to show its distinction for smaller government and lower taxes. The TEA parties were a non-partisan protest, aimed at tax and spend (mostly spending) policy and this is something over which the GOP is just as guilty as the Democrat Party.
The omnibus budget from The President (complete with 9,000 earmarks): $4,000,000,000,000.
The amount that the Cabinet has been asked to save: $100,000,000
If we scale it down, that’s $1 instead of $40,000. So, is it better to spend $39,999 or $40,000? Today, you can get a reasonably equipped Hummer H3 for $40,000. Would your buying decision be affected over the expense of one dollar? That’s like saying we won’t buy the Hummer because we didn’t get a complimentary cup of coffee from the dealer.
Big whoop, Mr. President. Zero impressiveness. How about taking out the 9,000 earmarks as a start?
Hey, Janeane Garofalo, come over here and call me a racist redneck to my face.
Turns out on The Countdown with Keith Olbermann on [P]MSNBC’, Garofalo went on a tirade about how those who went to the TEA parties throughout the nation were nothing more than Obama-hating, racist, rednecks. She told a head-nodding Olbermann how we’re all mentally dysfunctional and have no idea what the original Boston Tea Party was about.
It’s interesting that she spouted her hate-filled rhetoric on [P]MSNBC with Olbermann (a liberal hack in his own right), rather than having the guts to come over to Fox and tell Sean Hannity or Glenn Beck that they are right-wing racist rednecks. Instead, she chose the comfort of a liberal news show with a host who believes just like she does, a show that would actually have her on, like she had any credibility with her liberal nonsense.
Wednesday, I attended our local TEA party and while I did see a couple of rednecks there, I saw people of all walks of life standing next to me, all united on the subject of taxes. I saw white people, black people, hispanic, asians, old, young, poor, well-to-do, veterans, homemakers, students, professionals, transients, all sorts of people there. I saw zero evidence of racism there. Perhaps I’m blind, but when a former senator from our region, a man far darker skinned than Obama, with everyone in the crowd cheering his words, I don’t see racism.
If you want to call me a racist, fine, I’m a racist. I believe in the HUMAN race. After all, if Jesus died and bled for the sins of the human race, perhaps He believes that they are worth more then what liberals think we do. Even Janeane Garofalo.
Liberals like Garofalo are so full of hate and vitriol that they can’t see past their own darkness to understand why people would actually protest in disagreement against That One.
The one thing that I don’t get, how did Garofalo make the cut and get on 24? Does anyone like her character? She’s a terrible actor in her own right with so annoying a character that it makes me want to darn near start cursing the TV whenever she shows up.
Yes Janeane, God still loves you. But you are a still a pint-sized, tempest-in-a-teapot, doofus. And you’re a racist yourself, since you seem to keep forgetting that Obama is just as much white as he is black.
This is too good to pass up!
To sum up, when the French President calls the American President ‘weak’, something is wholly wrong with the forces of the universe. Yes, he’s *cough* my *cough* president, but getting sniped by a Frenchman for being weak is just downright disgraceful.
And makes for good ironic comedy.
Hopefully all of you had the opportunity and attended a TEA party yesterday. Today, I am reminded a number of things that President Reagan said on the subject of taxation and government spending. Rather than adding my own commentary, I would rather just sit and listen to words that have been said before and need to be repeated – over and over and over, until we understand them enough to excite us to action.
I think there are some people here who met a tax they didn’t hike.
Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.
The taxpayer; that’s someone who works for the federal government, but doesn´t have to take a civil service examination.
I just wanted to speak to you about something from the Internal Revenue Code. It is the last sentence of section 509A of the code and it reads: ‘For purposes of paragraph 3, an organization described in paragraph 2 shall be deemed to include an organization described in section 501C-4, 5, or 6, which would be described in paragraph 2 if it were an organization described in section 501C-3.’ And that’s just one sentence out of those fifty-seven feet of books.
Our federal tax system is, in short, utterly impossible, utterly unjust and completely counterproductive, [it] reeks with injustice and is fundamentally un-American… it has earned a rebellion and it’s time we rebelled.
The federal government has taken too much tax money from the people, too much authority from the states, and too much liberty with the Constitution.
We need true tax reform that will at least make a start toward restoring for our children the American Dream that wealth is denied to no one, that each individual has the right to fly as high as his strength and ability will take him. . . . But we cannot have such reform while our tax policy is engineered by people who view the tax as a means of achieving changes in our social structure.
Have we the courage and the will to face up to the immorality and discrimination of the progressive tax, and demand a return to traditional proportionate taxation? … Today in our country the tax collector’s share is 37 cents of every dollar earned. Freedom has never been so fragile, so close to slipping from our grasp.
Government does not tax to get the money it needs; government always finds a need for the money it gets.
Are you entitled to the fruits of your labor or does government have some presumptive right to spend and spend and spend?
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. – Amendment X, United States Constitution
The tenth amendment says very plainly:
- If a power is not explicitly granted to the Federal Government by the Constitution, it is reserved by the States and by the people.
- If a power of the Federal Government is prohibited by the States, it is reserved by the States.
The 10th Amendment is a very key amendment because by it, the states make the rules of what goes on in the states, not Washington DC. What it does is it enumerates who actually wears the pants in the US.
For example, take Alaska. Alaska has the Alaskan National Wildlife Reserve (ANWR) and they would love to bolster their economy by drilling for oil up there. But folks 5000 miles away are telling them that they can’t use the resources of their state for their own purpose. There is no provision in the Constitution telling Alaska they can’t drill for oil. If the Alaskan legislature wants to drill, they should be allowed. Washington can go pound sand.
Several states, such as Texas, South Carolina, and others have refused stimulus money because with that money, there are mandates from the Federal Government. Yet the Federal Government is trying to impose its will in saying that these states have to take the money. They do NOT! They can send that money right back to Washington and tell them what to do with their crazy regulations.
Many states have passed laws outlawing or allowing same-sex marriage. This is definitely not covered in the constitution and therefore a decision of the states. If Vermont wants gay marriage, let the voters and the state decide. If Iowa doesn’t want it, they should not be required to recognize it, even if a gay couple from Vermont comes to Iowa.
If the Dakotas want to pass laws outlawing abortion, they should be allowed to do just that. Remember, Roe v. Wade can be challenged when a state decides to answer the question of when life actually begins. (BTW – that was part of the decision back in 1973.)
Folks, we are the *United States*. That means we are a republic (not a democracy) of fifty sovereign states that have joined together to make a nation. We are one country, but we are fifty separate individual states.
We have appointed a federal government to handle matters that occur between states. The founders recognized that there would have to be a strong federal government to regulate interstate commerce, negotiate treaties on behalf of the United States, and raise a military. The Constitution clearly enumerates what the Federal Government is supposed to do. If it’s not enumerated in the constitution, it’s up to the States to decide for themselves.
If the Civil War taught us anything, it taught that states have the right to determine largely what goes on in their own borders. Washington DC has no right to impose its will upon the state.
Yet, ahead of all the Tea Parties that are going to be held tomorrow, protesting all the insane government spending that is going on in Washington, we now get a report from the Department of Homeland Security that warns of all us ‘Right Wing Radicals’ and wraps us up amongst those who would-be white supremacists and religious abortion-clinic bombing whackos, just because we’re getting sick and tired of the federal government sticking its fat nose where it doesn’t belong.
I wonder if DHS will start putting me on a watch list because I dare show that I am a patriot, a lover of the original constitution, and a protector of what the founders created, not what the so-called progressives have perverted.
Anyway, in the below video, Texas Governor Rick Perry has announced his support for HCR 50, a resolution in the Texas legislature does four things:
- Affirms Texas’ sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment of the Constitution
- Demands the Federal Government cease and desist any activity or mandate that is outside the scope of the constitutionally delegated powers.
- All compulsory federal legislation that directs states to comply under the threat of sanction or penalty from the federal government is prohibited and repealed
- The resolution be presented to the President Obama, Vice-President Biden, and Speaker Pelosi, as well as to the entire Texas delegation to Congress with instruction to enter it into the Congressional Record.
I’ve never lived in Texas and have only been there a few times. I’m going back in October on business. But the one thing you gotta appreciate is the Texas spirit. And I say with a hearty whoopie:
Don’t Mess With Texas!
Well, the Somali pirates have been taken care of – the way it should have been done and Captain Richard Phillips, as of 12:30pm today is a free man.
Turns out Captain Phillips took another jump out of the lifeboat on which he was being held while one of the four bad guys holding him was negotating his release. That pirate got put into jail after Navy SEAL’s dispatched the other three when they decided to try and cap Phillips.
Meanwhile, the White House sat back and monitored the situation. In fact, Obama avoided answering any questions regarding the situation numerous times.
While Obama had to give the order for any military action, it was the Navy SEAL’s who popped up and killed the pirates before they could pull their triggers. Go Navy! Up to that, Obama did nothing, avoiding the issue. But as soon as the approval rating was sinking, Obama did something about it, or more correctly, he let someone else get it done.
Well, since we’re talking about pirates and not doing anything, I am reminded of a song from VeggieTales that, with my near warped mind that I shall now share with you:
I am the President who won’t do anything
I just stay at home, with lies abound
And if you ask me to do anything, Ill just tell you
I won’t do anything.
Well I’ve never balanced a budget
and I’ve never fought a liberal
and I never have been ready for that 3AM call
I have never been supportive
of wholesome Godly values
But at least I’ve been to Boston in the fall.
(hat tip to the Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything, Big Idea Productions)