Sep 29, 2014

The Other Iowa Hustle (or) The Republicans are Coming! The Republicans are Coming!

Every four years we in Heartland Center get pestered to death by He or She Who Would Be The Ruler, but at least it is a bipartisan contagion. You know, like Ebola.

You have the left-wing authoritarians in the previous post. Herewith the right-wing authoritarians, making due allowance for Dr. Paul. He has inherited a certain amount of respect for the ability of  people to govern their own private affairs without undue armed supervision from social misfits with  government credentials.

As with the Democrats, the Republican list of Iowa Caucus annoyances is offered with no -- or at least  minimal -- editorial comment.


Josh Ellis BUSH, born Feb. 11, 1953, in Midland, Texas; banker, real estate promoter,  entrepreneur, former governor of Florida.

Christopher James  CHRISTIE, born Sept. 6, 1962 in Newark, New Jersey; lawyer, governor of NJ.

Rafael Edward CRUZ, born Dec. 22, 1970, in Calgary, Canada; lawyer, U.S. senator (TX).

Michael Dale HUCKABEE, born Aug. 25, 1955 in Hope, Arkansas; Baptist preacher, televangelist, teevee personality, former governor of Arkansas

Plyush JINDAL, Born June 10, 1971, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; biologist, politician, governor of Louisiana.

Randal Howard PAUL, born January 7, 1963 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; ophthalmologist, U.S. senator for Kentucky.

James Richard PERRY born March 4, 1950 in Paint Creek, Texas; USAF C-130 pilot, salesman, politician, governor of Texas.

Marco Antonio RUBIO, born May 28 in Miami, Florida; lawyer, politician, U.SW. senator for Florida.      

Paul Davis RYAN, born January 29, 1970 in Janesville, Wisconsin; politician, U.S. congressman (WI - Dist. 1)

Richard John SANTORUM, born May 10, 1958 in Great Falls, Virginia; lawyer, politician, former congressman (PA-Dist. 18),  former U.S. senator (PA).

Scott Kevin WALKER, born November 2, 1967 in Colorado Springs, Colorado; salesman, fundraiser, politician, governor of Wisconsin.

Hustling Iowa -- The Democrats

So far, it is simple. No one is officially running for the Iowa caucuses nod to be a White House candidate. Then again, it is complicated, because every self-styled political celebrity who ever looked in a mirror and said "Hi Mr. (Ms.) President" is sniffing around, looking for a hay bale to sit on and go "Aww Shucks" to us.

The TMR contribution to this operation begins with a baby step.   Six Democrats score a point or better in the major polls. They're listed below, just the facts ma'am.  Changes galore can be expected.

I'm starting with Democrats because they are usually the major enemy of liberty. I'll get around to the Republicans before long. Know thy most important enemy.

Of the six,  all have either been here recently or have organizations in place. They do a little retail demagoguery, but the immediate goals is to endorse and throw money at state-level politicians  in hopes of getting a helping hand when the caucus campaigns take off.


Joseph Robinette BIDEN;  born Nov. 2, 1942 in Scranton, Pennsylvania; lawyer, former Delaware senator, vice president.

Hillary Rodham CLINTON; born Oct. 26, 1947 in Chicago;  lawyer, former "first" lady; former New York senator,  former secretary of state.

Andrew Mark CUOMO, born Dec. 6, 1957 in Queens, New York; lawyer, governor of New York.

Martin O'MALLEY: born Jan. 18, 1963 in Boston: lawyer, former Baltimore mayor, Maryland governor.

Bernard SAUNDERS; born Sept. 8, 1941 in Brooklyn, New York; former congressman, mayor, student activist.  (Sanders calls himself an independent but caucuses with Democrats.)

Elizabeth Ann WARREN;  born June 22, 1949 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; lawyer, Massachusetts senator, former Obama consumer  "protection" official.

Sep 27, 2014

Blog beg, especially for vintage Apple experts

Being a packrat is fun and sometimes useful. But there comes a time...

So you wouldn't believe the amount of Jim-stuff heading for the landfill, including my first iMac  (eMac?), a desktop from the 90s, big heavy old brute running something like OS8.

It served me well, and there is a lot of stuff on the hard drive. I will probably never look at it again, but I might want to.
So, you experts among  my readers, supposing I pull the hard drive.

Is there a process for retrieving the information from the old drive alone if I ever want to?

Or do I need some sort of separate hard drive to download the old stuff to before I junk the computer?

Or what?



(A nod here to all my old friends, acquaintances, and enemies from Over Yonder.)

Sep 23, 2014

Nautical distractions (4)

If I am not mistaken, today will go down in the history of a small Iowa city as the Day the Beard Got Flushed

Tomorrow the freshly shaven takes his departure, and I like to imagine that  he glances at the Mississippi River on his childhood doorstep and thinks: "See ya. I leave you now to master waters far greater than your little peetrickle flow." 

I look forward to having him here again on one of his early leaves so that he may confirm his suspicion that his new employer will never equip him with arms so fine as those he knew in his extreme youth.

Godspeed, Son.

Thanks a lot, Charlo, and fork you, too

Eventually I got around to reading the Reason take on Charlo Greene's  "F--- it. I quit"  skit and even scanned a few dozen reader comments.  Disheartening.

Of course television journalists aren't. They get paid to draw audiences to commercials for gunk to make your underarms smell better. That makes them  shills. But they pretend to be journalists, and most of the public goes along with the gag. They have contracts with their stations to maintain that pretense. Part of the ruse is to appear objective. A big part is promising not to say
"f--k" on camera.

Charlo broke her contract and became an instant "libertarian" hero -- if the bulk of  the Reason comments is any guide --  because she vulgarly pimped  a personal political opinion on her employer's time, employer' property, employer's  spectrum, and likely as not wearing her employer's clothing.

It was about pot, of course, and it's irrelevant that her personal opinion and (most of) ours are identical.  The war on some drugs is illogical, expensive, stupidly waged, and very often downright cruel and immoral. (Hey, toss a grenade trew that there door Rambo; there probably ain't no little girl sleeping in da crib.)

The remnants of journalistic integrity need to be preserved. When a reporter outs a crooked or stupid or venal politician, we should be moved to an initial presumption of accuracy. When she reports a failed policy we should be able to assume that something needs quite a little more thought.

That happens only when the profession creates its own reputation for reportorial virtue, and that is the opposite of attention-whoring.

Why yes, Charlo, I do mean you.

There's nothing new about mulish tyranny

In late autumn,  510 years ago, seaman Christopher Columbus was in a painful bed in his rented house near Seville. After four voyages of discovery he was still "Admiral of the Ocean Sea"  by royal decree of Ferdinand and the dying Isabella, but  the title was becoming hollow.

The exhausted, gouty old Italian sailor was ending his days at the mercy of conspirators at the Spanish  court, sitting that winter in Segovia, nearly 400 miles of barely passable roads and ruts to his north. He needed to get there to plead in person for what he had been promised in 1492.

Three possibilities existed. One was a coach, for some reason not available to him. Another was the high-stepping Spanish horse, too fidgety for his racked old body.  Finally, the mule.

And here we get to the parallel ideas of 1504 and  2014, crony capitalism department. Samuel Eliot Morison  explains:

Columbus ... requested royal permission to ride a mule. The Andalusian horse-raising interests, it appears, had become so alarmed at the increasing employment of mules as saddle animals that a law had been passed forbidding their use for such a purpose. Columbus believed he could endure the gentle gaits of a mule but not the somewhat jittery paces of an Andalusian horse; so he applied to the King for a mule permit, and it was granted. (emphasis mine).

Columbus' remaining six months of life are interesting, perhaps poignant, but beyond the point here, which is that government was, then as now, in the hands of the greedy market perverts who will, for a price, decide who can sell what to whom and for how much.

It has become a little more subtle these days. Who can doubt the mule-ban followed direct bribes from horse breeders to someone privileged to whisper into royal ears.  In our democratic times,  the bribe takes another form, and the political payoff comes in votes. Voting blocs, actually.  For the thoughtless greens there is Solyndra, for instance. For the war hawk industry there are Halliburton and Blackwater, for instance. For general welfare-statist lobby there is Acorn, for instance.

I guess that is one reason I rarely give full voice to the contempt I have for the Obama clique and all its predecessors back though Wilson, at least. The enemy is not so much the men and women of the statist left and the statist right. It is the corrupted idea they serve.

These elected royals didn't invent oligarchy, crony capitalism. They are simply its latter-day minions, tools of the thoughtless notion that they -- like all politicians -- have the right to dictate your every decision and reap the rewards from grateful winners in a government-controlled marketplace..

Jackasses, you might say. Not totally responsible for their actions, but surely in need of the greatest discipline.


The quoted passage is in the one-volume edition of Morison's "Admiral of the Ocean Sea," the Little-Brown 1942 edition, p. 664.

Sep 17, 2014' I'll take the low road

A romantic impulse commands me to cheer the Scot "Yes" forces,  and  I dream of Highland independence -- at long last -- from the English usurpers.

It is not only my image of a hundred thousand kilted stalwarts flashing their Claymores at Hadrian's Wall, chorusing out the newest Presbyterian hymn. (Still unwritten but to be titled Thus Far and no Further Ye English Bawjaw Dobber.)

It could be the beginning of world-wide ascent of the Celts. Ireland would welcome the Caledonia clans as brother and sisters. Together they open their arms to the Welsh. Together they ally their stout hearts to free all Ulster still enslaved under Cross St. George.  The sons of The Wild Geese would return to ancestral homes. Likewise the rest of the Celtic diaspora excepting only those inferiors any race produces. (I am thinking here of such things as the Massachusetts Kennedys. )

On close examination, however, my fantasy of tomorrow's vote as the harbinger of Celtic world rule crumbles.

You know why those gobshite yessers north of the big firths are pissed and want to run away? It is because London is not liberal enough for them. Their campaign slogan could just as well be a resounding "MORE DOLE."  No such group, no matter how noble its ancestry, should be entrusted with operating a nation or other adult responsibility.

Sep 9, 2014

Shades of Checkpoint Charlie

Flash bang and smoke as Putin shows that wimp Obama that Russian leaders have the bigger balls.

We are getting used to that kind of neo-tsarist theatre, but I'm especially unhappy with his latest Speedo pose because it is upsetting folks in one of my favorite countries-I've-never-visited.

...according to several Estonian accounts, smoke grenades detonated at an Estonian customs post, and all radio and telephone signals were jammed as armed Russian men suddenly materialized and dragged away ... Eston Kohver. 

Kohver is identified as a counter-intelligence  official, but his main job seems to have been keeping an eye out for smugglers at the  Luhamaa crossing to Russia. It could therefore look like one of those small-potatoes border squabbles dreamed up by bored local poobahs, more to relieve bureaucratic tedium than anything else.

Probably, though, it is more geopolitically significant. Or at least a credible plot  line for whomever is doing Eric Ambler's work nowadays.

...Kohver's fate has now become entangled in a much bigger issue: the question of just how far Vladimir Putin's Russia is prepared to go to goad the Nato allies on its doorstep.

That is, Putin and his capos are getting their kicks humiliating the West in general and our president in particular  by proving they can be utter nuisances -- and dangerous to boot, sometimes -- all the way from the Ukraine, where everyone is watching, to the Baltic, where hardly anyone is*.

As the Guardian has it:

The capture has been seen as particularly provocative because it came two days after the US president, Barack Obama, visited Estonia, a trip aimed at reassuring the Baltic states of the US commitment to the security of its Nato allies in the face of Russia's role in the Ukraine crisis. It followed the announcement of the creation of a "spearhead force" – a Nato unit of 4,000 soldiers to be tasked with defending Baltic countries including Estonia.

Putin had to grin when he heard that. Four thousand NATOians to defend  Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania? "I mean, Hell, Barack,  I purge more soldiers than that every couple of weeks or so. Wanna arm wrestle?"


*Except of course for the Estonians, including a smart and pretty lady named Kristin who keeps her Face book friends updated and rates a hat tip for this report.

Sep 6, 2014

A little car porn while I'm warming up

My dad certainly saw this car, and may have been in it. Assigned to the staff of the Algona POW camp, it was in service during the years when he drove German prisoners from Algona to the marijuana factory hemp plant  in Humboldt.

There was a Ford of his own in his future. The Terraplane by Hudson blew up...

(That's not Mom.) we made do with Model A for a year or so.

Warming up for what? A couple of breathless anti-government tirades, that's what.    

But first, I note that the family transportation tastes seem to have regressed.

I again warn her that they're easy to lose in even small snow drifts. New Dog Libby moonfully concurs, I think.

But maybe it is a Minisootie Special,  computer chipped for easy location in the snowiest months,  September through June. 

Pip-pip and cheerio.