November 30, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 27, 2009
But consider this - the Democrats could be staging this whole process to make it look like vigorous debate is occurring.
That makes 2 of the top 3 speeches so far, and 3 of the top 10, British. Number one will be revealed tomorrow.
November 26, 2009
November 25, 2009
November 24, 2009
November 23, 2009
It could pay for the entire Gross Domestic Product of Russia, with the Omnibus bill left over to spare.
China is building a high speed rail system (bullet trains) with a total length of track of 16,000 miles, for a cost of $300 billion. For that price the President could have built 117,333 miles of track for high speed trains. In China the project created 110,000 construction jobs - the U.S. job would create over 800,000 jobs.
Pay for NASA at it's historical budget rate, for the next 146 years.
Pay off (if that were possible) 38% of the public portion of the national debt as it stood in 2008
China's Three Gorges Dam cost anywhere from $25 billion (officially) to $75 billion (estimated). The dam generates 18.2 million kilowatts of power. At an average of $50 billion For the money Obama has spent, the United States could have built 44 of these dams, providing over 800 million kilowatts of power for the country. That is, assuming there were enough rivers to dam up like that.
Alternatively, a nuclear power plant costs anywhere from $3 to $10 billion to build (estimates vary). At the highest end of that scale, the country could build 220 nuclear power plants that generate say 837 MegaWatts (as in the case of Three Mile Island) each. That represents 184,140 new Megawatts of power. If a small city of 50,000 needs 3 MegaWatts per day, and the U.S. population is 306 million, the country apparently requires roughly 18,360 MW of power per day. That's one tenth of what could be produced by adding new nuclear power.
Based on Market Capitlization as at September 2008, the U.S. government could buy up 5.5% of all publicly traded companies in the world
Based on 2006 census data, purchase 10.8% of all real estate in the entire United States or 94% of all real estate in China.
There are plenty to choose from. I've included this one because I remember watching this as a young teenager and it being part of a personal awakening to politics in general, but also that he was articulating things I felt but had never before considered.
Here's Ronald Reagan, at the Republican Convention in 1980. Words of wisdom.
November 22, 2009
November 21, 2009
Already my face is turning blue.
The fact of the matter is that health care reform as espoused by Democrats, and Cap and Trade and the ARRA stimulus and the omnibus bill ALL are financial, simply indefensible.
The country is being drained of it's lifeblood and IT CAN DIE. IT WILL at this rate.
The Wall Street Journal describes it as a coming disaster.
Peter Schiff sees it too, just as he saw the housing bubble burst.
As an aside, word is Schiff is going to run against Dodd in Connecticut: (in which he uses the word 'distaster')
That's trading up, big time - Dodd is at least negligent and at worst criminal on the housing problems. Schiff deserves support.
Charles Gasparino from CNBC gets it too;
The examples could go on forever. The fact is that there are so many people who see the gaping holes in the Obama Titanic that to continue without even stopping for a breath is also, simply indefensible.
If this economic folly is not halted soon, it has only two possible outcomes - collapse and/or violence. Either way, this does not end well. I know it sounds like the equivalent of conspiracy nutjob stuff but we're talking about trillion dollar debts for a decade, in a best case CBO scenario. The best case is never the way reality turns out.
If these people are wrong, then delaying Obama health care a few years is merely a delay. If they are right, or even partly right, then we are facing an even bigger change than Obama planned - irreversible decay of America's financial power and global influence. We're talking about the greatest country in the history of the world turning into an also-ran. Rome fell; in it's heyday it was the current version of America as far as geopolitical and economic power. There are more disturbingly similar parallels too. That means America is not too big to fail. Do you really want to chance that for free health care paid by higher taxes, and money borrowed from China and/or stolen from your children?
It really is indefensible.
Despite the the scary sounding nature of a society 'tolerant of all views' and constantly changing, it is after all what made America great in the first place. The idea that radical thinking is a bad thing for America is nonsense. In the free market of ideas, good radical ideas will thrive and silly ones will go nowhere.
Radical thinking has created and helped sustain scientific progress. Radical thinking in a political world is something entirely different. Certain concepts like liberty and justice are timeless and will hold strong despite a potential for radical ideas.
Where Burke misses the mark on the free thinking concept is the idea that all societies will allow unfettered access to free thought. China, Russia, Venezuela, Iran and North Korea are great examples of this. He's talking about an almost de-nationalized world where ideas supersede national identity. Reaching that point may still be centuries off.
However, in Burke's defence is that fact that while those totalitarian societies can thrive over a short period of time (China being the most recent example of a societal surge in geo-political power), they cannot sustain the rate of progress that a free society can muster. Free societies like Great Britain and the United States have had a distinct advantage in that regard and it is reason for their success in recent centuries.
Any move away from that freedom, whether by the likes of the Obama administration or by racism, or religious intolerance under any guise, is a danger to the continued success of America. That is not to say that the U.S. should be any less vigilant in defending it's national interests. There are those like the Taliban for example, or radical environmentalists, who would gladly see free societies turned back to the stone age to suit their own agendas.
There's nothing wrong with a utopia, other than the fact that it's pretty much impossible to reach. But if there were ever an opportunity to get there, where logical thought, religious tolerance, and individual liberty are all prized, then the liberties enshrined in the United States Constitution must be defended from abuse, theft and vandalism in the supposed name of social justice that includes rights not granted by the Constitution or God. President Obama refers to them as 'negative rights', because they don't go far enough to guarantee things for people.
Only socialist societies do that. Free health care. Free medicine. A right to a post-secondary education. What's next? A right to free television?
Freedom from stupidity? There are certain things the government simply cannot guarantee. Nor should it. If it tries to guarantee them, recognize that you are being sold a bill of goods.
November 20, 2009
November 19, 2009
November 18, 2009
Despite that, and despite the fact there are more people who who oppose health care reform than support it, it still might just happen. Go figure.
November 17, 2009
Gateway Pundit has a great summary on the weird timing of the rationing of mammograms – according to a federal task force recommendation, saying women shouldn’t screen for breast cancer in their 40’s but rather start in their 50’s.
Oddly, as Gateway Pundit points out the U.S. breast cancer survival rate exceeds that of the socialized medicine of Great Britain.
Here’s an idea; how about a nice… wait that’s the last two posts.
Here’s an idea; how about playing up that story for all it’s worth because it telegraphs the future state of health care in America under the O (and that’s not a BINGO reference).
Hey, people who ran the campaign for the supposed polite elder statesman, here’s an idea; how about a simple ‘no comment’? The McCain camp continues to get even the little relevance it still has wrong. Way to go guys. Now go away.
Regardless of what you might think of Palin, the McCain camp pooched his campaign royally, including the handling of Palin. They should deal with it by shutting up and sucking it up for the Republican team. But they continue to be self-serving, even though their time has passed. It’s disgraceful. Not Newsweek disgraceful, but still bad.
The White House had a case of premature denigration when it denied the Drudge Report story that they would have an Obama interview on Fox – it later turned out the story was true.
Hey, here’s an idea; how about a simple ‘no comment’? The White House continues to get even the little things wrong. Way to go guys.
November 16, 2009
*Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears;
I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him;
The evil that men do lives after them,
The good is oft interred with their bones,
So let it be with Caesar ... The noble Brutus
Hath told you Caesar was ambitious:
If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
And grievously hath Caesar answered it ...
Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest,
(For Brutus is an honourable man;
So are they all; all honourable men)
Come I to speak in Caesar's funeral ...
Remember, After new Coke, Coca Cola was able to rebrand itself with its original formula and people re-acquired a nostalgia for it. Palin's initial brand, as it were, was exemplified by her first speech to the Republican Convention last fall. This could go as well as that if she manages to handle the interview well.
Oprah seems to be going into the dragon's den in a sense for Palin. Despite Oprah's image a nice, Oxygen loving, friend to women, she did schill for Obama. Palin will be treated politely but Oprah would be quite happy to see Palin trip up and is more than willing to create a situation favorable to that outcome, even if she doesn't do the tripping herself.
Then again, Palin has had time to prep herself for that sort of situation and should expect it to be coming, and be prepared for it. This should prove to be an interesting, and hopefully not predictable week.
November 14, 2009
This particular example highlights the underlying notion that terrorists should be privy to the same rights as United States citizens. In this instance, President Obama did in fact exercise his discretion (if you can call it that) by allowing the trial to take place in civilian court. Attorney Brian Levi serves as the Director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University. As Levi noted today, “As a legal matter President Obama could very well also have tried these five detainees before military tribunals, as five others are…”
There is longstanding precedent for the use of military tribunals to deal with the difficult situation of unlawful combatants captured in a time of war. As Arthur Herman wrote in Commentary, this is the original path the Department of Justice and the Bush administration sought:
The rules on Gitmo detention and on interrogation constituted a valiant attempt to deal with an unprecedented legal situation. The same was true of the system of military “commissions” or tribunals for trying suspects at Gitmo. Here the Justice Department largely followed the precedent of tribunals used by the American military during World War II, and upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in its 1942 decision Ex Parte Quirin.
As 9/11 victim relatives Debra Burlingame and Tim Sumner lay out in a letter and petition to President Obama, and as anyone who has watched an episode of Law and Order can surmise, there are a host of thorny issues that could arise in the civilian trial of an unlawful military combatant. These detainees weren’t Mirandized. Secondly, their extended detention, a defense attorney could claim, was in violation of the assurance of a swift and speedy trial. Furthermore, given that they were caught on a battlefield, the chain of evidence is not up to par with the (rightly) strict standards of our civilian courts. Could their cases be dismissed outright? These are legitimate legal concerns raised with these cases.
Bribery? Fact check needed on the specific charge.
I haven't seen much play on it yet anywhere yet.
*I'm not usually a Savage listener but I was surfing the AM dial while driving at night, picking up a lot of stations from the midwest and also the Atlantic coast. I heard him from I think it was Missouri.
It's a fascinating history of science, society and culture.
November 13, 2009
The Clash's iconic album Combat Rock featured a lesser known track called Straight To Hell. Proof positive that older music, even those songs not destined for big notoriety in their day, still provide the shoulders of giants that so many of today's musical artists seem uninterested in learning from (preferring instead to ignore or merely sample). That's not a knock against today's artists, just a lament about the...wait, it is a knock. Quality today is much fewer and farther between, and there's no need for it.
The Clash. Sounds familiar.
November 12, 2009
- 8 million jobs lost in the current recession
- 3.3 million (55%) more working part-time (9 million total) than the high water mark of previous recessions
- The equivalent of another 2.4 million jobs lost due to work week hour reductions
- Previous recessions unemployment rates have peaked almost a percentage point higher and a year after the official end
- Youth unemployment nearing 20%
- 2.89 million people will reach retirement age starting this year and each year for the next 20 years.
- In 2005, there was a projected 3.9 million people reaching age 22, 1.2 million of which would graduate from college