Nov 30, 2010

High-Plains Ugliness

Alternate title: "Just Bitching and Moaning"

From the official gummint guessers:

Today: Scattered flurries before noon. Cloudy, with a high near 22. Blustery, with a northwest wind between 23 and 29 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph. 

Tonight: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 8. Blustery, with a west northwest wind between 15 and 21 mph, with gusts as high as 29 mph. 

D.C. al fine. And there is no "fine" in the forecast furs the eye kin see. 

To Hell with winter.

The Great Princeton Hummus War

Will you join me in a great cause?  Hummus eaters at Princeton are being exploited, and a mass protest is necessary.

The problem:  Grocery stores operated by Princeton offer only one brand of hummus. It is owned by Pepsi Cola and a  subsidiary. A Palestinian student group accuses Pepsi of donating money to support Israeli human-right violations.

The Palestinian kids collected enough signatures to force a student  referendum. If it passes the university will be asked to stock its hummus shelves with competing brands which do not contribute to Israeli human rights horrors.

(1) What in holy Hell is a university doing running grocery stores?

(2) If we can find a way to send the complaining kids home when they've finished matriculating, they'll become the rulers of whatever sort of nuisance the Palestinians next establish to misgovern themselves.   That is, they stand a good chance of becoming Gaza warloards in L.L. Bean button-downs who can quote Norman Thomas. (Princeton gives great credentials for aspiring rulers, foreign and domestic.)

(3) What in holy Hell do the P-kids kids think they're at Princeton to accomplish, anyway? If one of their goals is to learn to draft carefully thought-out proposals, mark down a failing grade:

"The referendum was originally scheduled for last week but was canceled then because of a goof: The wording called for Sabra hummus not to be offered at university stores rather than for additional products to be sold, too."


Hummus: A sort of sandbox  salsa of chickpeas, sesame seed paste, olive oil and whatever spices do not violate camel country dietary laws. Suspicions that it diminishes mental capacity are so far unproven.

Nov 29, 2010

Death in the North Country

The Mossberg 500 had never seen field duty. It serves as one of the local security tools since having the "turkey" (20-inch) barrel installed for purposes of launching magic cones of certain death at intruders, along with, of course, the fearsome Clickety-Clack Chorus. (by Anton Dvorak, I think, or maybe Bill Haley.) On a lark I took it to the game farm near Avon, Minnesota this weekend for a morning of shooting at ringnecks. It turns out that the cone of death is real when the gun is  loaded with lead No. 6s and properly pointed. Modesty be damned, I estimated the range at 40 yards. My hunting buddy called it 40 to 50, but he is an extremely generous fellow. (The 3-inch double ought-buck in the stock band was set aside for the duration of the hunt.) 


The breast is preserved for an evening when I am absolutely certain to be dining alone. It will soak in salt water -- perhaps with a pinch of cumin? -- and be severely seared before hitting the oven. The legs will become part of a slow-cook stew, company welcome.  And anyone who isn't jealous gets a lot more pheasants than I do. Or has never tasted one.



With melancholy,  I record the passing of Clyde. She kept to herself when outsiders --- meaning everyone but her mistress and master --  were around, so I knew her only as Mencken knew Coolidge.  " ideas and ... not a nuisance."

She lived a fullness of cat years in a loving home.

Nov 24, 2010

Physics for Greens and Other Beginners

Iowans would have saved $3 million — or $12 a family — this Thanksgiving weekend on gasoline if the federal government already had required vehicles to get 60 miles per gallon, an environmental group said Tuesday.

What a limited world-view these guys have. If Mommy Dotguv required vehicles to get 120 miles per gallon, that same poor family would have saved $24.  Further, imagine how rich we'd all be if His Obamaness told Detroit to make 'em go 1,000 miles on a gallon.

Not to mention the joy of having Washington mandate on-board, on-demand force fields fueled by unicorn farts.

Nov 23, 2010

The Only Ones

AP corrections are more fun than the original stories.  In this one, intense editorial oversight and multiple layers of fact checking revealed that revolvers don't use clips.

(This version CORRECTS Corrects to say ammunition clip was from officer's service weapon instead of revolver),  reads the appended editorial note. 

Sure, it was actually a magazine, but why get pedantic?

Officer Friendly lost his ammo on a previous flight.  He either didn't notice or decided to brazen it out to avoid crude locker room cop jokes. "Got your ammo, Sam Spade?"

The air line security biffs, who carefully sweep the jets between flights for dangerous objects, didn't find it either.

Let us hoist a glass to the Only Ones.

To Grandmother's House We Go

If you believe your government and the national news media, the pornscan opt-out is so far a bust. Only a few American fliers are crotchety enough to object to  displaying their junk to total strangers. When an intimate grope is the alternative, I suppose that's understandable.

If we paid attention, we saw it coming. Various polls have shown 70 to 80 per cent of us are willing to trade our Fourth Amendment protections for the illusion of security.

I live mostly rural these days and fly seldom, but I remain an American citizen who understands that what happens to my fellows in mobbed airports will, in due course, happen to all of us somewhere.

Do you doubt that the bureaucratic imperative of mission creep will eventually strip your mother naked during rush hour in the D.C.Metro system, at the AmTrak depot,  and before she's allowed to enter a crowded theatre?

North Korea

Wait a minute. Didn't we pay up when Kim demanded a bribe a year or so ago?

Maybe it would be easier just to put him on our MasterCard. Automatic pay the first of every month.


Nov 22, 2010


The new BATF boss-designate likes to crow  about his achievement in arresting "18 people who bought and traded 'illegal' guns at a shop in Rockford, Ill."  He extrapolates; "Every illegal firearm removed from the hands of an unlawful possessor represents one or more potential violent crimes that was not and will not be committed..."

"Was not?" So, if you seize a gun at midnight there will not be a violent crime committed with it the previous noon? (Do you happen to drive a DeLorean?)

Look, Traver, we can create a better dialogue here if you familiarize yourself with some simple tenets of logic. Among other things, if  the firearm is "illegal" then its owner is by definition "unlawful," and there's no need for the repetition  -- beyond the euphonic requirement of cheap and redundant  rhetoric.

Never mind your reliance again on "potential" for violence.  We've all had enough of our Masters' protecting us from potential by any means their propaganda arms can shove down our throats.  Two ounces of apple juice in a baby's sippy-cup is a potential  911 replay.   Driving my pickup to the lumber yard creates a potentially tropical antarctic.  Every Viagra tab is a potential geriatric rapist.


As you might expect, Paul Helmke is conducting the Traver-As-Second-Coming Hallelujah Chorus:

"Apparently the gun guys are upset that Traver did a TV interview where he helped demonstrate the lethality of an AK-47, while explaining, 'Pull the trigger and you can mow down people'.” 

Get an Escalade. Push the accelerator and you can mow down people.

Then Traver added that, “the growing frequency of gang members and drug dealers using heavy caliber military-type weapons” is a problem we should be concerned about.

I don't know if the tendency is growing or not, and neither do you.  Point 1: We don't know how many "gang members and drug dealers"  exist. Point 2: We don't now how many of them use "heavy caliber military-type weapons." and neither do you. As a matter of fact, when  objective and hard-working scholars who have investigated for years  are asked about the the total number of guns in the country they reply, "Uhh, we really don;t know. We think about 200 million, or maybe 290 million, possibly 300 million but, but, but...".

So forgive us, Messrs. Helmke and Traver if we pee on your colongenic data about  trends in tiny unknown subsets of an uncertain total number.


Just one more thing. You guys keep whining about "heavy caliber military-type weapons"in civilian hands, and you like to use the AK47 round -- 7.62 x 39 -- as an example.

Ballistic charts are free. They're on the internet. You can use them without applying for a big research appropriation.  If you do, you'll discover that the AK47's heavy caliber is about the same as my great-grandpa's .30-30 lever gun.

(H/T Tam)

Nov 21, 2010

Trevanian's Pig Weather

Questions arrive here about  the meaning of "pig weather."

It denotes a land saturated with unpleasantness from the skies.  Mist, chill, sporadic rain accumulating as filthy slush. Low grey clouds portending not storms but a long siege of wet and boring discontent with the world outside your window, neither the balminess of a good spring and summer, nor the crispness of autumn, nor the challenge of winter's worst.  Neither one thing nor another, merely enervation.

The phrase comes to me from Trevanian's great and gentle novel, "The Main,"  set in Montreal and  following an adventure of aging detective Claude LaPointe.   Trevanian called it a roman policier. Most Americans would probably refer to is as a police procedural, but that shorthand connotes too much of the mindless whodunit.

It is certainly possible that some better novel has been written about culture clash and human frailty and the innate compassion of the best police officers seeking to temper human violence. I haven't found it, and that is not for a lack of looking.

My Cup Runneth Over

I've mentioned the big lead stash and the barrel leading from the first batch of c. 230-grain round-nose bullets. Pan lubrication solved that problem, but a delightful auction has made it nearly moot.  I cannot explain why the gunny crowd let me  buy 1,500 commercial   .452 SWC 200-grainers at exactly one and one-half cents per round.

Geeking it out: A cent and a half for the bullet, three cents each  for the primer and case, just under two cents for the Unique.  I'll be shooting Mister Browning's (PBUH)  big pistol for about  twice the cost of the cheapest  .22 rimfires.

My oracle foresees more and louder bangs in the Camp J vicinity for the next year or so.

Social Networking Tools

The final 200 commercial cases on hand  are in the tumbler. Loaded with excellent 200-grain SWCs today they'll bring the Colts' fodder inventory up to the strategic reserve target.

(Pig weather rules out pleasant outdoor work.)

Nov 20, 2010

Al Sharpton

The Rev. Mr. Sharpton continues his career of missing the point. He and New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly are holding hands, skip to my Lou, to  get guns off the streets.

A careful reading of the wire story suggests Sharpton is close to concluding that thuggery, with and without guns, is a problem most highly concentrated in a tiny portion of his admiring hordes in Bloombergistan, but he just can't bring himself to say so.

Nov 19, 2010


I try not to discuss abortion because its spiritual dimension is unrevealed to me.

I will observe that it seems to me to be a particularly cruel and emotionally draining form of birth control. I will make what I think is a practical observation. Laws forbidding abortion create two classes of affected women. Rich girls fly off to Switzerland. Poor girls are found in the  alleys.

Thailand is not the United States, but a grisly report illustrates the problem.  

In Search of Class

TMR tends toward the rustic. Guns made of steel and walnut.  Dead oak trees turned  into fuel. Barely sentient critters such as politicians and leopard frogs.

This sometimes shames me, and I yield to the urge to offer urbane content.


Lauren Bacall

Nov 17, 2010

Government Gropers

An idle thought: Once in a while you'll still see a woman tastefully dressed in tightish skirt. So, when she opts out of pornscan, how does the TSA manage its 360-degree grope of each leg?

The Sentient Pistol

Tam has a piece on a Virginia nincompoop who shot himself while groping in his pocket for beer money. The judge rapped him and ordered his Glock destroyed.

Punish the gun. Fine idea. Damned guns can get willful.

I recall, but can't find, a  c. 1968 Chicago Tribune cartoon by St. Bill Mauldin. An enraged mob is watching a handgun in a noose, hanging from a gallows or lamp post. The thug in the foreground chuckles, "They decided to let me go and lynch my gun."

Nov 16, 2010

The Great Pheasant Shoot-At (AAR)

The clan and friends have dispersed, and I am recovering from sensory overload, a happy man to have had the fun again.

The worst imaginable hunting weather closed us down Saturday, so consumption began earlier than usual, culminating in a birthday party for my daughter which strained the capacity of my small quarters.

The grandpa gave the lad a plain-Jane pump 20 gauge as a belated birthday gift.  It is meant as a spare for days when he doesn't care to take his nice double afield. He  graciously acknowledged it on Facebook, and I can hear the shrieks of my lefty friends now. OMG, you gave a GUN to a CHILD?  (The last I saw of the child, he was nonchalantly at the wheel of a Suburban while my child relaxed in the passenger seat.)

The end of the fest pleased the pheasants, I'm sure. The noise of being shot at must be terribly annoying.


The gloom in the financial markets echos the pig weather around here. The experts are blaming my Irish kin today. Seems as though my beloved Celtic brothers have discovered that they are broke, just like the Greeks,

Funny thing about that. You expect the ordinary Greeks to lay around doing Greek stuff while their big banks burn and their intellectual betters are still yakking about men of gold and philosopher kings and suchlike. But we expect the Irish to be Paddy on the Spot and start shooting each other. That's always been their version of an economic stimulus.

Nov 12, 2010

The Shoot-At

In the great pheasant plains of the semi-west this morning,  22 legs are stalking through soaked fields of corn stubble,  brome, and native weeds. Ten shanks are accounted for by son, grandson, son-in-law and friends. The other 12 are distributed among the shorthair, the vizla, and the yellow-ish lab. I am keeping camp. I am hoping the boys' Filson  gear is keeping them comfortable.

It is the Great Annual Clan Pheasant Shoot-At and Group Dog Hug which is headquartered at Camp J, a tradition I cherish. It is also a tradition in which I do not  participate totally due to the approach of the time when I must concede that I nearing my mature years. Breaking through dense cover for hours is a fine way to stay young, or to remind yourself that you no longer quite are.

Although I did enjoy yesterday morning in the field. One of the  dogs treated us to a classic point and flush. She also had the manners to remain straight of face when the ringneck continued his impromptu flight to Terril, several miles to the south. My lads policed up the three expended 12-gauge rounds. I was on the far end of the search and destroy line, too far away to justify a shot. This prevented the need to dream up a creative excuse for missing. We never saw another bird.


In fact, I own marksman-of day honors. It happened like this:

I was carrying one of my spare shotguns, just because I had never shot it and decided it was time to blood it.  On the first rest break it occurred to me that I should see if it would go bang. One of the boys tossed a can for me. Boom. Can reveals a cluster of No. 6 holes. This means that I have +never+ missed with this gun, and I'm tempted to carve "Ol' Sure Shot" on the stock and retire her to pegs on the wall.

The bird dearth didn't seem to dampen the evening of food, beer, and stories which were, in nearly every case, at least nearly true.


If the next rain holds off, I'll be out again this afternoon. If a pheasant jumps in my zone, I'll try to remember to lead him.

Nov 11, 2010

George Will at the Cato Institute

Just go read it.

EDIT: The link takes you to "The Smallest Minority." Scroll down a few entries to those for Nov. 5.  It is  a transcript of the podcast. (And, by the way, welcome, TSM, to my little blog roll.)

Sample: "(James) Madison said rights pre-exist government.  (President Woodrow) Wilson said government exists to dispense whatever agenda of rights suits its fancy, and to annihilate, regulate or attenuate or dilute those others. Madison said the rights we are owed are those that are necessary for the individual pursuit of happiness. Wilson and the progressives said the rights you deserve are those that will deliver material happiness to you and spare you the strain and terror of striving." (Emphasis mine.)

Nov 10, 2010

Flash! Iowa Lawmen Decide to Obey Law on CCW Permits

Even the sheriffs who don't like the new shall-issue law have agreed to comply with it, according the the Newspaper All Iowa Used to Depend On. 

The laugh here probably results more from the journalistic emphasis than from the sheriffs themselves.

The Headline:

Iowa sheriffs will issue new gun permits despite worries about consequences, association says.

No shit Sam Spade?


Despite the sniff of reportorial disapproval, it is not a terribly bad explanation of the law that goes into effect in January.

Jennifer does seem to get a little damp because sheriffs can deny permits for a "short" list of state and federal disqualifiers. If she wants to have a beer with me, I'll be glad to explain why the list of things that cancel Constitutionally recognized  rights is supposed to be short.

In fact, it probably isn't short enough.

Nov 9, 2010

I was just talking with Diogenes and...

he told me that there is no hope for honesty in the nation until a two-by-four measures two inches by four inches.

I rang him him up after finding an ancient piece of dimension lumber in the shed. It measured two inches by four inches.  I have offered it to the Smithsonian. If they decline, I'll try the Cato Institute.

Meanwhile, the project progresses, using  three and one-half (barely, these days) by one and one-halfs.

Golden Fleece

Working for modern politicians, Jason wouldn't have had to steal much fleece to renew his fleet.  A couple of the ram's nose hairs would probably cover a shiny new trireme.

Courtesy of AFP we learn that  Ben and Barry and all their recent predecessors and current pals have pushed gold through  $1,400 per ounce.

Making those who worked hard and saved their money look like a bunch of stupes. We're on a path to the day when lighting your smoke with a C-note will not be thought remarkable.

I think I'll keep hieing myself to the WalMart to invest a little more in value-added lead, copper, and zinc. Which are, of course, following gold up at $1.14, $3.96, and $1.13. respectively.

Nov 7, 2010

No you can't, Mr. President

We're all getting a little sick of your self-portrait as a brilliant policy maker but a poor salesman for your ideas.

Barack Obama as Willy Loman? My butt.

Mr. President,  if there's one thing you have it is the huckster talent. You could sell horse apples at a rodeo. That's how you came to be president.


We called this a good Saturday morning's work. The old burr oak on the property line was long dead and leaning over the storage shed and the house.

Choice: Drop several hundred into the pocket of a tree pro or unleash my inner Paul Bunyan.

The latter, of course. Economics aside, neither the other Paul, my neighbor,  nor I concede one damned thing to the woods. If it has leaves we can handle it.

It took an hour to lay her down, also two pickups in 4WD low range, three hundred feet of 5/8 nylon,  a 10-inch  pulley,   plus the usual saws, wedges,and unfortunate language.

The notch  and straight cut were in the right places. We had no trouble pulling her on the hinge to get the new center of gravity  where we wanted it.  Then came the hangups  in the high branches of the nearby trees.  A few more judicious cuts almost  got her falling. This is where the injudicious language came into play, culminated by my stentorian voice at the tree, to Paul in his pickup,  "Hit it. Give that  *X%$(*&@ all you got."   

The 5/8 nylon line instantly  became nearer to 3/8. There was a certain amount of noise as Paul revved his half-ton up to 3500 or so and the object tree tore widow makers from its neighbors on its way to the deck.

I'm actually burning some of the small, high branches this morning. I feel quite smug about it all, knowing that success resulted from clever planning, careful selection of equipment,  and great finesse of execution. There are those who will sniff about brute force and blind luck. I thumb my nose at them.

Nov 6, 2010

Speaking of Voodoo Money

All the president's flack men were breathless in announcing the $10 billion deal with India. Bomba will buy airplanes and stuff from us to support about 54,000 U.S. jobs.*


Let's play pretend. Pretend the deals actually occur as advertised. Pretend India actually pays the bill.**  That's $10 billion injected into the national economy.


On Wednesday, when a majority of us were taking the victory lap and most of the rest were crying in their Chablis, the  Federal Reserve Board launched  "QE2," a barbaric misuse of the English language to denote creating, out of thin air, 600 billion new dollars by buying American government bonds with money that doesn't exist.

If and when  the  the nation of OOHHMMM reaches into the pocket of its bed sheet and forks over our $10 billion in productively earned money, it will represent 1.6 per cent -- one-decimal-six -- of the the $600 billion imaginary greenbacks. Ben and the rest of the Washington monetarist geese see this as shrewd Yankee trading.


Top of my head, I can identify at least eight or ten objections to my analysis,  and a good Keynes/Samuelson-trained economist will open the action by hollering "Multiplier effect, you moron. Multiplier effect!"

Absolutely. The airplane makers makers of American will collect the Indian cash via their Boeing and GE bosses. They'll take it to the WalMart and buy crap made in China.

I have no immediate  plan to contract something incurable, but if I do I'll be proud to proclaim myself sound as a dollar.


* Never mind that (a) the deals had been under discussion for months or years and (b) these aren't necessarily new jobs.

** I have dealt with the Third World, up close and personal. Rule One is that if you don't get your money up front, you stand a very good chance of not getting it at all.
A small post about a small story:

Someone mailed three skulls to Brigham Young University. Professors determined they were human skulls from about 1200 AD. The Associated Press informs us:

That fits with the early suspicions of investigators that the skulls might be ancient artifacts.

One is tempted to make some wise crack about multiple layers of vocabulary study, but, out of compassion, I decline.

Nov 5, 2010

His Obamaness

I am reading "The Autobiography of William Allen White"  and find it  timely that the Sage of Emporia opens with a line from Ralph Waldo Emerson:

All that Shakespeare says of a King,  yonder slip of a boy that reads in a corner feels to be true of himself. 

The  Boy Barack strolls Hotel Street, dreaming of being a sailor, then a captain, an admiral, a commander of admirals until that ultimate day when a spray of Rembrandt light engulfs him and all the world chants his name. Adoringly.

Econ 101

If you cut economics class to play the pinball machine and still don't quite understand what all those  grouchy Austrian economists are talking about, the Random Patriot provides a near-perfect explanation. 

Nov 4, 2010

Horse WHAT?

This English guy walks under a conker tree.  A nut falls and conks his head.

Being English, he seeks the assistance of the Authorities. Being English Authorities, they leap into action.

The notice put on the tree in the Abbey Gardens in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, reads: "Beware. Falling Conkers. Please proceed with care."

One resident -- a 77-year-old woman who presumably remembers Britain as a nation rather than a theme park -- ridiculed the Elected Few. The council huffed back that it was simply responding to the legitimate complaint of a concerned conked citizen. 

The final paragraph of  another report says of the village:"Tourism is also a major part of the economy, plus local government.

No doubt.
Conker? That's English for the perilous horse chestnut.

Raise a glass to Roberta X this morning for,  among other things, her reminder that we still  live with Kelo.  You'll recall that SCOTUS decision allowing governments to snatch your home or other  property for a "public purpose."

The "public purpose" as defined by the the court includes the desire of a city council to confiscate your home and give it to someone else, like Pfizer.

(Meanwhile, in New London, the Fort Trumbull project has been a dismal failure.  After spending close to 80 million in taxpayer money, there has been no new construction whatsoever and the neighborhood is now a barren field.  In 2009, Pfizer, the lynchpin of the disastrous economic development plan, announced that it was leaving New London for good, just as its tax breaks are set to expire.)  

The European Socialists love that sort thing. It is why their brie and haggis are so tear-stained since Tuesday night, and  Ms. X nicely skewers their sky-is-falling caterwauls at our rejection of His Obamaness as their untouchable  "President of the World."

Adventures in Investing

I try to protect myself against Washington, especially Ben's toy printing kit, with little forays into the stock market. Over the years,  cautious day trading has financed a gun or two and kept me independent of the Food Stamp program. Some times the results are braggable, some times the opposite. Some times you kiss your sister.

Last week my razor-sharp financial acumen said Lee Enterprises was a buy at $1.89 for a  two-day recovery to $2.10. I popped for a thousand and immediately, I mean right now, watched it sink to $1.70. Oh Hell. I just lost a Ruger 10-22 and a brick of .22s.

Monday the world decided  something nice was happening to  Lee (LEE, NYSE). It recovered. No fool, I got out at $1.91 for a  whopping total net profit of $1.96.

What color  cars do you girls want?

Nov 3, 2010

Goodthinkful Iowa

Real life is making some immediate demands on me this morning, so I'll let part of a letter to a buddy stand for my first reaction to yesterday's events.


...All three Iowa Supreme Court justices subject to retention votes this year were tossed out. (Due the court's unanimous decision that gay marriage is a constitutionally protected right.)  I feel personally bad about it because I routinely vote "no"on all retentions -- magistrates through the high court.  Since, up until the homo crisis,  they were routinely approved by lopsided margins, I felt it was important to let them know someone was watching, to keep them humble as befits anyone slurping at the public trough. If I had thought it through I would have voted to retain the Supreme Court justices, not because I particularly like the idea of state regulation of marriage, straight or gay, but  because (a) their decision was in accord with the Iowa Constitution and (b) it's quite dangerous  to over-politicize the courts. That's just what we have done.

One result will be a tendentious and ultimately trivial (in purpose) waste of legislative time in  examining the moral bent of every justice nominated.  It will draw attention from our fiscal problems and refocus it on the vast potential for sin in Iowa's one million bedrooms.

The guy mostly responsible is a creep named Bob Vander Platts  who has lost two or three bids for the governor's office on a platform of  holiness. He's crowing about his victory this morning, and he's young enough to be a pain in the ass around here for a very long time. For that matter, he may give you some trouble, too.  He had a lot of non-Iowa religious money to spend, and the  nutty wing ... intends to take his business plan national.

It's relevant that the GOP recaptured the Iowa House and closed the Senate gap to a few votes.  This is likely to lead to another emotion-fest about amending the state Constitution to forbid gay marriage. While they're at it the may also draft an official bedtime prayer and require its utterance once in each 24 hours.

The nation? Well, at least we've slowed the Obama statists of the left a little. I am not one of the Tea Party worshippers, suspecting that they harbor a full share of statists of the right.   Most of what I have to say about it on the blog:

Oh Hell yes, I overstate the case. The devil makes me do it. ...

Nov 2, 2010

Rand Paul

It didn't take MSNBC long to start having its nervous breakdown. Paul's victory is strictly the product of secret outside campaign contributions. Uberfartz did not see fit to comment on the contributions of SEIU, NEA, AFSCME and/or George Soros.

I may stay with MSNBC tonight for the same reason the London nobility used to plan a social evening around a visit to Bedlam.

Voting AAR

Five Wookies, one Republican of known hairy tendencies,  two Democrats,  and three write-ins in local races. "No" on all judge retentions. "No" on a con-con. "No" on a  very expensive sales-tax hike to hire more bureaucrats to say nice things about "protecting the environment."


Voting around here is a pleasant experience. The level of cordiality and civility makes the campaign  bullshit seem even slimier by comparison.   Folks smile and say, "How ya doin'?" They come closer to meaning it than any  professional pol I ever met.

P.J.: "Don't vote. It just encourages the bastards."

Yeah, Mr. O'Rourke, but I gotta do it anyway, even though someone else recently noted that if voting made a difference, it would be illegal.

So I'm off to my polling place.  The little gasoline-soaked rag under my nose helps deaden the stench.

Nov 1, 2010

Alaska's Corrupt Television Bastards

They're probably no more corrupt than your average Joe Sixpack. What they probably are is a gaggle of rather young teevee journalists who got only a quick steep in the tea of of journalism ethics. (Sardonic comments on oxymorons are duly noted.)

Moreover, they cling bitterly to  that notion that drama is good for the ratings, and ratings are everything, so what's a little fomenting among friends? In the newspaper business it would be called something like reaching for a headline. "Miller Pulls a Rand, Stomps Defenseless Girl at Far Right Rally."

Good news rooms recognize the reporter's  lust  to be above the fold, or lead the Six O'clock News. They hire dictatorial editors (the only kind worth having)  to stomp down hard on the over-reaching field man.

We don't really know the full context of that telephone conversation about KTVA  helping instigate some skulduggery at a Miller rally, and perhaps it was partially or mostly  joking banter.  

Nevertheless, I do not criticize Ms. Palin's characterization. Plain language tends to bring important questions into sharper focus, and the media have their  full,  fair share of corrupt bastards.*  All that remains is the need to get our political celebrities to apply the term to, for instance,  about seven out of ten bureaucrats and politicians, teevee preachers, lobbyists, and mortgage brokers. 


*Along with some sterling exceptions.