Archive for January, 2008

Superbike Racing

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

Really? Be sure to read the comments.

Quote of the Day

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

From Taranto:

But some conservatives still hope for a Romney comeback. Blogger Josh Treviño manfully makes a case that Romney actually won Florida, referring to exit-poll numbers (the CNN link didn’t work for us, so we’re going with MSNBC instead) that found the following:

Romney won pro-lifers.
Romney won the mainstream religious. (Huckabee won the very religious–less than one-fifth of the pool.)
Romney won the Protestants.
Romney tied Huckabee with Evangelicals.
Romney won the pro-GWB voters.
Romney is the primary second choice of Giuliani voters, Thompson voters . . . and McCain voters.
Romney won the immigration hard-liners.
Romney won the upper-middle class, earning between $100,000 and $200,000 annually.
Romney won the terrorism-oriented voters.
Romney won the self-identified conservatives and the self-identified very conservative.
Romney won the values-oriented voters.
Romney won the white voters.
Romney won the tax-cutting voters.

It seems the only group of voters McCain won was . . . the voters.

Since when is white, religious and rich conservative? Oh, yeah.

America’s Team

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

This is hilarious (I think) and expresses a lot of what Cowboys fans are feeling right now (note: I’m not one; but rewrite this to rant and rave about the Packers and you’ll have my emotions from the last week).



The clip, by the way, is taken from Der Untergang, which is an outstanding, if brutal, movie.

Don’t You Dare Criticize My Tax!

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Jeff Schnepper makes a good criticism of the Fair Tax. Boortz’s response?

First of all … he resorts to the childish 30% argument. I’m sorry, but if a person can’t understand the concept of replacing one embedded tax with another, and calculating those taxes in the same manner, then you have to wonder how much serious thought they’ve put into their criticism.

I have the next Fair Tax book on my to-buy list. But when you respond to an article that list both the benefits and drawbacks of the Fair Tax with “Waa! It’s not 30%!”, then you’re not even trying.

One of the biggest reasons to oppose the Fair Tax is the deception being practiced by its proponents. If their plan was so great, they would respond to the arguments that:

  • The Fair Tax is regressive since the rich do not spend 100% of their income while the poor do.
  • The Fair Tax will almost certainly cause a 30% inflation because of wage inflexibility.
  • The Fair Tax will be massively unfair to people who reside where the cost of living is high.
  • The Fair Tax will create the biggest entitlement in American history.
  • The Fair Tax will not be immune from political manipulation, insane complication and black or gray markets.
  • PS – Speaking of stupidity, Boortz outdoes himself with this:

    Remember the AIDS “epidemic?” Several years ago people were calling for my head because I repeatedly said that there was NO AIDS epidemic in the U.S. Now it seems that less than 1% of adults in the U.S. have HIV. Some epidemic, huh?

    So if a million people dropped dead of ebola, you wouldn’t think we have an epidemic on our hands?

    Limbaugh on McCain

    Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

    Was driving around today and heard both Boortz and Limbaugh yammering about about how McCain isn’t a conservative, McCain is a liberal, McCain is the media’s choice, McCain this, McCain that. Waa waa waa. Of course, it’s odd to hear a pro-life, pro-war, federalist fiscal conservative with a lifetime ACU rating of 83 called a liberal.

    There are two reasons talk radio is so harsh on McCain and neither has anything to do with “amnesty” or McCain-Feingold. Many of these guys worship Bush, who supports both policies. No, it comes down to this:

    1) If McCain is the nominee, it will be a huge blow to talk radio. When McCain’s numbers tanked last year, the talk radio show host boasted that they’d killed him. If he is the nominee now, that means they have a lot less influence than they think.

    2) They don’t like the company McCain keeps. He works with Democrats — although not to raise taxes or blow up spending, like the good conservative Bushes have. He is endorsed by the NYT. He appears on The Daily Show. As far as they’re concerned, that’s one step away from singing Koom Baya with Michael Moore. Conservatism is often defined more by the people conservatives don’t like (Hollywood celebrities, MSM, hippies) than what they do like.

    The Flag

    Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

    Last week, Christopher Hitchens had a great piece on the confederate flag controversy, pointing out that our lazy media hadn’t bothered to point out that (a) the confederate flag is not the official state flag of South Carolina; (b) it was flown purely as a defiant gesture against federally-ordered integration.

    When I was younger, I defended the flying of the confederate flag, a position I look back on with embarrassment. I supported it for a variety of reasons, mainly the idea that the Civil War “wasn’t about slavery” so why should black people be offended?

    What tipped me back was two realizations:

    (1) Even if the Civil War wasn’t “about” slavery, the issue was so entrenched with the war, the distinction is academic. Without slavery, there would have been no war.

    (2) It doesn’t matter if blacks’ offense at the Confederate flag is rational or not. The flag is supposed to represent all the people of the state. If some fraction finds the flag offensive — whether their offense is reasonable or not — it should be changed.

    Win A Date With Chad Sexington

    Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

    As much as I sometimes sound like a member of the Andrew Sullivan Fan Club For Straight Men both here and at RTLC, sometimes he gets on my nerves, such as when he approving links to an Elle article so vapid and self-centered, it drives me to blog.

    The article, by Min Lieskovsky, is all about how much she loves dating male models, how she’s like totally done like SIX of the top models, how she’s like soooo hot and went to like Harvard and so on.

    Good grief. The thing reads like a better-educated version of the head cheerleader’s diary. Are all women’s magazines this empty-headed?

    Part of this pattern could have to do with female empowerment and progress, but the rest simply has to do with the beautiful, half-naked men who emblazon city buses, subways, and billboards—the ones who I can point to and say, “Dated him,” or, “Made out with that one,” as I jog past in a tattered sweatsuit. Besides, the relationships I have in my midtwenties probably won’t pan out. Most of the time, when they end, I think, What an ass. If it’s going to turn out like that anyway, I’d rather it be a fine-looking ass.

    Well, Min, maybe if you weren’t such a vapid superficial self-centered twat, you’d be in better relationships.

    I’m not being sexist, here, I don’t think. If Scott Baio wrote an article about how much he loved dating Playboy models, I’d probably do a bit more than rant about it — I’d punch him in the face. I never understood this aspect of “feminism” — that somehow women being as vapid and superficial as men is “empowering”. I thought it was a bad thing when men dated women based soley on their breast size.

    But it’s that last line that gets me. Am I the only person in America who doesn’t hate his ex-girlfriends? The most I’ll do is look back at some woman I was interested in where it didn’t work out and say, “Boy, dodged a bullet there.” I asked my wife if this was a female thing and she said that she didn’t despise her ex’s either, she just didn’t want to see them anymore.

    Sunday Night Linkorama

    Sunday, January 27th, 2008
  • Scumbag of the Week: kill a kid with your car; sue his family for the damages to the vehilce. I’m just surprised this isn’t happening in America.
  • Citizens have been detecting toxic chemical in New York. The solution? Force them to get permits.
  • Ed Morrissey makes the case that the NYT is trying to undo McCain by endorsing him. I heard Herman Cain the other day saying that the NYT endorsement proves that McCain is a liberal. This is a senator whom the American Conservative Union rates a lifetime 83. But, apparently, because he doesn’t want to rip the heads off Democrats and drink from the stump, that makes him a “liberal”.
  • The latest from the Copyright Cowboys? Cease and desist letters are copyrighted.
  • Quantum of Solace

    Friday, January 25th, 2008

    Yes, that’s the official name of the next Bond flick. I like it. It’s the one Ian Fleming title I figured would never be used since, in my crude estimate, 83.6% of the movie-going public has no idea what a “quantum” or a “solace” are. I only know because a) I have a degree in physics and spent a lot of time trying to figure out what the hell my quantum mechanics books were talking about; and b) one of my favorite pianos pieces to play back in the day was Solace by Scott Joplin.

    Yeah, you didn’t see that coming, did you? I used to enjoy playing ragtime music.

    2008 may not be the biggest year in Hollywood history — in fact, many are predicting financial disaster. But with Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Prince Caspian, X-files 2, Get Smart, The Dark Knight and Quantum of Solace due to hit the screens between now and next Christmas, I’m expecting to enjoy the year. Some of those titles will stink but some will be great.

    I still predict the Star Trek movie will be an epic catastrophe.

    The Return of Linkorama

    Friday, January 25th, 2008
  • Your public schools at work. They’ve turned high school into a weekend with Netflix.
  • Your government at work. Public employees looking at porn. I do love the hysterical line about “including the Child and Family Services Agency” as though there is something hideous about children being looked after by people who — gasp! — like looking at naked women. If that’s a problem, 90% of the kids in this country need to taken away from their dads.
  • Your MSM at work. The cowardly NYT endorses the establishment candidate. I guess someone as divisive as Hillary will sell newspapers. The NYT is buying the Clinton spin on Obama’s candidacy.
  • Bill Clinton at work:

    I want to thank you for twice giving me the chance to serve as president. The 1990s were a time of prosperity. We created more than 22 million new jobs, moved eight million people out of poverty, and turned our economy around.

    It’s time for another comeback, time to make America great again. I know Hillary’s the one that can do it.

    Translation: do you want a third term of me? Please, Democrats. Please say “no”.

  • The Hillary machine at work, telling Jewish voters Obama is a Muslim. Come on, guys. We’re too smart to fall for this shit, no?
  • Fisking TMQ

    Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

    From TMQ today:

    Usually, stars change position in the night sky more rapidly than planets, a reason our primordial ancestors began to wonder whether the lights now known to be planets were different from the other lights.

    Um, it’s the exact opposite, Gregg. Planets change positions. This is why they were named planets.

    No HOF For Me

    Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

    I was a little annoyed when I heard a writer had refused to vote in baseball’s hall of fame balloting. But reading his statement he makes a great point:

    Anybody who has a HOF vote now was writing then. Also I recall that when I wrote about McGwire and andro, wondering why we celebrated him while crucifying Ben Johnson, the fan/public response I received was almost one hundred per cent negative. Leave McGwire alone, they said. Totally different thing. Don’t wreck a great story.

    So the same writers who were celebrating Big Mac back then, and pissing on the reporter who wrote the andro story, suddenly got religion last year. I got sick reading all of those ‘what will I tell my children if I vote for him’ columns.

    To my mind, baseball created the working conditions under which players felt comfortable using steroids, amphetamines, and god knows what else. There were ‘rules’ and there was a law — but with no testing and no enforcement, that was like posting speed limits with no radar.

    After the fact, I am not willing to stand in moral judgment, deciding who gets in to Cooperstown and who doesn’t. I didn’t sign up for that. And I think it’s wildly hypocritical for anyone else to do it, given how willfully blind they were, but that’s up to them. (The whole idea of sports writers standing in moral judgment of anyone is a bit hard to take.)

    So I opted out. Wrote a little note on my ballot saying I declined to participate, and sent it in. Don’t know if they’ll send me another one next year, but I can’t see getting back into the voting unless baseball somehow rules that alleged drug use should not be taken into account.

    The great irony is that had McGwire lied to that congressional kangaroo court rather than awkwardly taking the Fifth, he’d be in Cooperstown now. There’s a great moral lesson for the kids.

    Lightening Up

    Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

    Most of my political blogging, you may have noticed, has been absent in this space. Almost all of it is now taking place at Right Thinking From the Left Coast. (I’m in Austin, and that’s sort of the left coast of Texas). There are a variety of reasons — greater exposure, superior blog software and one of our bloggers has been silent for almost three weeks now.

    I’m reserving this site for unrelated sports and personal blogging as well as my longer essays.

    When Pundits Attack

    Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

    Stephen Bainbridge sums up the argument, from Right and Left, about why an “economic stimulus package” is a really dumb idea.

    Megan McCardle on Clinton’s tax plan:

    I don’t want to hear any more about how the Democrats are the party of fiscal responsibility; none of them are planning to close the current deficit, much less deal with the now-seriously-it-really-is-looming entitlement problem. Their tax code changes will claw back only a small fraction of the revenue lost in the Bush tax cut. If you are surprised, it is probably because the Democrats and the Republicans have a different definition of the tax cuts going “mostly to the rich”. If you mean, “which individuals got the biggest benefit from the tax cuts?”, rich people did, because they pay the most taxes; that is the definition Democrats use. But if you mean “which class of people got most of the money?”, then the answer is “the middle class”. There just aren’t that many rich people; it costs a lot more to hand out a modest amount of cash to 200 million than to hand out a lot of cash to 500,000. So when Democrats repeal only the tax cuts on the top one or two brackets, this may be symbolically rewarding, but it will not actually generate that much revenue for the treasury.

    Democrats are, of course, planning to spend every bit of the money from their tax increases on new spending, plus it looks like some more. You may now return to forgetting that you ever thought you cared about the budget deficit.