January 31, 2013

Jamaican accent racism

The new Volkswagon commercial has been deemed racist.  Comedian Jim Norton has a great take on it.  First, here's the commercial;

Some journalists have called the ad racist. Comedian Jim Norton has the perfect take on it on his Facebook page:
Once again, hypersensitive, politically correct frauds are 'outraged' over something they deem racist. There seems to be nothing these redundant bores enjoy more than the feeling of self-righteous indignation. This time, it's a Volkswagen commercial with a bunch of white people talking in Jamaican accents as part of the company's 'Get In, Get Happy' campaign. It's a silly commercial embracing the Jamaican attitude of just letting things roll off your back, no stress. (The commercial, of course, has been embraced by Jamaica). Who had a problem with it? Who else? Stupid, babyish Americans. So far, the two most vocal have been Charles Blow, a black, embarrassingly predictable New York Times reporter and Barbara Lippert,a 'pop-culture guru' and arguably the ugliest woman I've ever seen. (And that's saying something; I've slept with a LOT of borderline-disfigured disasters). When will people stop their dull, repetitive bellyaching that everything that deals with race, or parodies race, is racist? I tend to hate intellectually elitist idiots who think they 'see what the rest of us miss'. The commercial is harmless. And I guess if a white guy doing a Jamaican accent is racist, then EVERY black reporter in the United States is racist for taking on the 'whitest-guy-in-America accent', no matter where they are from. Oh, right, it doesn't work that way. Sorry.
Not much needs to be added to that. Great opinion piece Jim.

January 30, 2013

Poll: Top 10 issues facing America today?

What's troubling America most? Immigration, jobs, debt, gun rights, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, national debt, GDP, right to life, Supreme Court decisions, executive over-reach, energy, tax reform, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, China, a possible recession, housing, health care, environmentalism, or something else?

Take the poll. Your opinion might not count in Washington these days, but it does count here.  I'm interested in seeing if I'm on course with the direction of my blog.  There a lot of important issues and the primary focus of my blog can't be on all of theme, though I may touch on all of them at times (and others).

If you choose 'other' as your issue, please add your issue in the comments section.  Thanks for participating!

January 28, 2013

New Look

Unveiled the new blog look today.  It's still a bit of a work in progress, but it has more functionality and a more professional look than it used to have.  In addition, I'm hardly an html expert but I did get to pick up some new syntax and practice some coding skills along the way.

Don't get me wrong, I didn't write the code from scratch, I downloaded a template and modified it.  It required a lot of adjustments (which I still haven't finished).  Wordpress has a lot of themes and styles that Blogger doesn't have.  My blog is a hosted on blogger - at least for the time being, and the reality is that professional looking sites are often more Wordpress based, so I was looking for a Wordpress news theme.

There were a few that were more appropriate than this one but the coding was far too difficult for me to work with.

Nevertheless, the new looks is here, mostly.  If you have any feedback please comment.

January 27, 2013

Sunday Linkaround

Not much time to post this weekend, but here's some good reading in lieu of reading something here.

OpiniPundit: I bet a lot of you -even conservatives - didn't see this. I've been admittedly busy, but I didn't.

The Scratching Post:  We'll find the money somewhere.  Never mind the "of course it's this bad" reaction you'll have, the really question is how do we fix this mentality.

Capitalist Preservation captures the video of Hans-Hermann Hoppe on how to debate Paul Krugman.  I've featured Hans-Hermann Hoppe on the Saturday Learning Series here.

Bluegrass Pundit: a heartening story about the 4th Amendment that is only missing the happily-ever-after of the government learning a lesson from it.  This or something like it, will happen again.

Conservatives For Congress: Senator Ted Cruz on the rebirth of conservatism.

Right Wing News:  Information as a contaminant.

Blog de King Shamus: Republican governor Scott Walker is packing a big...budget surplus.


He doesn't post as much as he used to, but Mean Ol Meany is still worth reading.

Pundit Press - Bush mocking.

Commonsense and Wonder: Low info voters outed.

January 25, 2013

Why Obama won re-election

No rational, thinking person would give Obama a second chance, but he won re-election.  How is that possible?

Well, people like this are allowed to vote.  It's both amusing and sad that people can be this clued out and still be part of the group responsible for electing the leader of the free world.  I bet if Peter Griffin were running most of these people would for him - even though he's a cartoon.

Another Peter - Peter Schiff explains the voters here.  He also comments (too briefly - see below) on why Democracy represents a tyranny.

January 24, 2013

OMG Rand Paul should be in the news cycle!

OUT: Ron Paul - kooky. (Sorry libertarians, but he is.  Yes, he's right about a lot of stuff, but he's also wrong on some important things and he is indeed, kooky).

IN: Rand Paul - reasoned, intelligent and right.

This clip should not only be in the news cycle, it should BE the news cycle. This is the single most fundamental counterpoint to Obama's unilateral actions on gun control (in this case) and it is succinct, eloquent and hard (if not impossible) to deny or dismiss  as kooky or paranoid.

EXIT Question: Does this make him a front runner for 2016 or is it just a cogent argument that will fall on deaf ears?

Reagan was right as usual

Via The Comical Conservative:

Update rollback

Well, yesterday I tried to update the blog to the new look and it caused a bunch of problems.  Rolling back to the old layout has unexpectedly caused a couple of minor problems as well.  For example I've lost a bunch of my blogroll links that I will need to manually correct.  

Changes, corrections and enhancements are still in progress and you can expect to see a revamped blog look in the coming week or so.  HTML is not my forte but I'm getting through it slowly.  Keep an eye out for the new look.

Coming Soon.

January 23, 2013

Common Ground?

Not so big.
After the president came out and not-so-subtly bashed Republicans as name-callers rather than solution-oriented problem solvers, irony decided to remove itself from the English language in disgust.  But things still need to get done.  There are a lot of problems to be solved.  But with an ideological chasm so deep Republicans can either capitulate or stand firm, because there appears to be little in the way of common ground - at least as far as moving forward goes.  For example, the president reiterated some environmentalist points in his inaugural speech.  But since the election, the Keystone XL pipeline that had been benched by the president as an issue until after the election, has come back.  So does the president find common ground with conservatives and labor unions or does he break bread with environmentalists?  How do you find common ground when you aren't even always sure where the president stands?

January 22, 2013

Winter Doldrums

Just a reminder.
Yesterday was inauguration day. Perhaps it's because I've got a lot on my mind - work, personal life - that it wasn't exciting for me.  Maybe it's just the winter doldrums.  A lot of bloggers I talk to are not posting as much right now, and web traffic is down.  It just seems slower and less important right now.  I'm not suggesting it stays that way, just that right now everything is blah.

After the inauguration a lot of pundits on  Fox were all over the combative liberal nature of Obama's speech. It was liberal all right, but I don't know that it was reasonable to expect anything else like a conciliatory tone. That's based on what - history?  Maybe, but not Obama's history.  It was an unsurprising speech.  It was also pretty pedestrian.  There was no soaring rhetoric or vision statements, just a rehashing of previous speeches.  Bland, unexciting.  Enough to lull the right into inaction perhaps, in which case it was a brilliant effort.

January 19, 2013

Saturday Learning Series - The Feynman Lectures (Part 1)

If you watch the Big Bang Theory, you may recall they reference Richard Feynman a few times.  For example, here.

They also mention his lectures.  Richard Feynman was a theoretical physicist and he gave some lectures on physics that were simultaneously understandable while being not too general in nature to be uninformative.  This is one of part of those lectures in which Feynman focuses on the Law of Gravitation.

January 16, 2013

Getting around intrusive government

A video from Reason TV in an interview with author Jeffery Tucker on digital media on the idea of getting around intrusive government.

January 15, 2013

Executive overkill

Everyone knows to take anything that Joe Biden says with a large dose of salt.  He talks out of his posterior more often than not.  But there's no reason to believe that he pulled this number out of the ether and decided to run with it.
The White House has identified 19 executive actions for President Barack Obama to move unilaterally on gun control, Vice President Joe Biden told a group of House Democrats on Monday, the administration’s first definitive statements about its response to last month’s mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
19 executive orders on gun control.  Regardless of the constitutionality of the move, regardless of the lack of sensibility of the move, the telling thing is that number.  One executive order would't do? Executive overkill is expected from this batch of liberal miscreants. 2700 pages of health care bill has ballooned into tens of thousands of pages of bureaucratic overlay.  Why produce something simple when something convoluted, unnecessarily complicated and susceptible to easy manipulation and fraud is possible?

We should expect no less than 19 executive orders on guns from this president and his cabal of social engineers.

January 12, 2013

Saturday Learning Series - The Art of War

Sun Tsu's The Art of War as told by the History Channel. His treatise on battle are fundamental to not just war, but other areas of life as well.

January 10, 2013

Jack Lew is almost perfect for Treasury Secretary

President Obama has nominated Jack Lew as the replacement for Tim Geithner as the Secretary of the Treasury.  Jack Lew, an Obama appointee is bound to be a disappointment but for this administration, at this time, he's almost perfect for the job simply because of his grade-school signature that everyone is mocking.

The reason is simple.  As secretary, his name will go on the currency and as you can see in the photo, his name contains almost enough zeroes to represent the annual budget deficit. I count 9 zeroes.  Put a 1 in front of it and that's a billion.  Only three more zeroes and his name would look like the tail end of a trillion.

Almost perfect for the Obama deficits, but as in all things Obama, just a bit short of reality.

If it weren't so sad, it'd be funny.

January 9, 2013

Lesson: Obamacare exemptions applied selectively

Obamacare exemptions are granted by executive fiat apparently.  So the lesson is to um, be compliant and subservient to the executive branch, forever and always?

At 42 seconds into this video, it's mentioned that Obamacare only exempts religious organizations, which Hobby Lobby is clearly not. The selective application of who gets exempted based on friendliness to the administration is superseded by the glaring inaccuracy of the reporting.  Plenty of non-religious organizations have been given exemptions (Hat Tip via FreeRepublic).

January 8, 2013

I never got Frank Zappa, but...

Frank Zappa has some interesting takes on how the music business suffered from allowing hippies to be in charge, and then some advice on the entrepreneurial spirit. I never got Zappa's music despite the insistent attempts from my younger brother (we were around after Zappa's heyday).  But I now appreciate his business sense.

Warning on the first video - he gets a little out there towards the end when talking about de-programming kids and then a little vulgar about safe sex (it's bleeped out) but the first two-thirds are pretty much great, and the second video is pure gold.

January 7, 2013

President Tries To Divide the GOP using the GOP

Continuing the policy of trying to divide and conquer your political opposition, the president chose a Republican to steer the Department of Defense - a department he cares very little for.  But in doing so, he has managed to choose a Republican who has some shaky positions on foreign affairs that happen to align with the president, and ones that will not rest well with those in his own party.

By selecting Chuck Hagel the president is daring Republican to reject his nominee.  They either give him an ally on Israel and let him look bi-partisan or they reject him in look intransigent and stubbornly, blindly opposed to all that is Obama-driven to the point of being unreasonable and self-destructive in the eyes of the media, and therefore casual observers.

Well played, albeit cynical and destructive, Mr. President.

January 5, 2013

Saturday Learning Series - The Road To Serfdom

Many people on the right know who Friedrich Hayek is and have heard of his seminal book, The Road To Serfdom.  But far fewer have likely read it.  Knowing today's pace of society and work and family obligations by so many of us, reading can be difficult.  So here's an attempt to make Hayek's work more accessible.  In the spirit of books on tape, below is a reading, in four parts of that book, that everyone, conservative, libertarian, liberal, socialist, communist or whatever, should hear.  It's not the actual entire book on tape but the subsequent forward to the 1956 edition.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

January 4, 2013

Site Updates

I mentioned back in December that I was going to be making some changes to the design of this blog. As of today I have added some quick links to my Twitter Google+ and Facebook accounts as well as subscribing to my Site Feed and Youtube Account. I have also added an ARCHIVE page today to free up some space on the main page.

The archive only includes the last 500 or so posts, which means only about a year's worth of posting there. Adding more causes the page to load too slowly.

I've also changed my links into categories and have some more editing to do there.

Needless to say it's all a work in progress and more changes are coming.

Stay tuned for more.

January 3, 2013

We need minions!

The most important activity for conservatives right now is not putting pressure on Republicans to do the right thing.  It's not identifying candidates for 2014 or 2016.  It's much more grassroots than that.  Conservatives need to get organized at the grass roots level.  The various factions of the Tea Party have had at best, mixed results.  Not to denigrate the Tea Party factions, but they have varying agendas and operational effectiveness despite their common goals.  That does not imply that we need a centralized control of a movement that is founded on the notion that over-centralization is a bad thing.

But it does mean that efforts need to be smarter.  Some Tea Party groups have had greater success and their efforts and methods should be emulated wherever possible.  The problem with that is obvious.  Since the movement is so decentralized and so disparate, it's just hard to know whom should be emulated.    In that respect, we almost need a roll call of groups - Tea Party or not - of those we can number as allies. We need minions and we need a place to share that common knowledge.  We need a group of people to start aggregating and quantifying these things.  We can't leave it to the likes of Karl Rove.  He got a lot of stuff wrong on election night and whether he had good intelligence or not the use of it was clearly not effective.

January 2, 2013

Fiscal Cliff Deal Sucks. But Don't Blame Congress.

Happy New Year.  Welcome to the era of soak-the-rich, tax-and-spend out-of-control-debt liberalism.  Enjoy.

As a conservative, I view the deal reached and passed by the Senate and then Congress is abysmal in terms of how it approaches the deficit problem.  It focuses on tax increases instead of the real problem - overspending.  It doesn't go far enough towards solving the problem and it smacks of Democrat win.  But the bill that originated in the Senate and was just passed by Congress and will surely get president Obama's signature while folly, is not the fault of Republicans, it's the fault of conservatives.

Yep - it's our fault.  The public sent more Democrats to Congress, and kept the balance of power in the Senate and returned president Unemployment to the White House.  Voters are responsible for the elected representatives making these abysmal decisions.  It's the fault of voters.

But with four years of Obama, conservatives had every opportunity to come up with a viable alternative.  Don't blame Republicans for the host of ersatz candidates.  We lost momentum and we paid the price with a lackluster cast of players.  And as far as an ill-informed electorate, we are to blame.  Yest the media has gone over-the-top in it's biased support of the president and the liberal agenda.  But that makes it incumbent upon us not to insulate ourselves from liberals and become an echo chamber of thoughts and ideas only to ourselves.  We need, will need and have always need to reach out to reachable voters and convince them of the soundness of our positions and the weakness of the liberal positions.  We didn't do that or to be more fair, we didn't do it nearly enough.

As I said immediately after the 2008 election, there's a lot of work to be done, and we've no time to lose in getting them done.
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