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Showing posts from November, 2009

So long, and thanks for all the fish

The absence of new content here for the past few days has not been the result of any tragedy or work implosion. I have been thinking seriously about multiple commitments and where in my life I can make the most difference. Two years ago I started this blog on something of a lark, primarily to see what would happen, and to inject some of my own ideas into that whirlwind we all call the blogosphere. Several thousand posts later, I came to the realization that ... I'm done. Not that it hasn't been fun, intellectually challenging, or even may have changed the minds of a few people on a few select issues... it has. But as a whole, I've recently discovered, it's a never-ending personal commitment to an enterprise that neither pays the bills nor makes a significant enough change [as compared to other venues in which I work] to be worth continuing. I only have a certain amount of time and energy available, and here's where it will be going in the near future: 1. To

... and thinking about all those queers would be too distracting right now

So--not surprisingly-- the US Senate cancels scheduled hearings on repealing DADT : WASHINGTON (AFP) – A planned November hearing by the US Senate Armed Services Committee to consider ending a ban on gays serving openly in the US military will be postponed, a spokeswoman indicated Friday. "We do not have a date" for the hearing, said the aide, Tara Andringa. Note to America's LGBQT community: like free lunch, there will be equality tomorrow.

Breaking! DSU Trustees select Dr Harry Williams as next President

No details on the maneuverings, but I have it confirmed that current Provost and Academic VP of DSU, Dr Harry Williams, has been announced as DSU's next President. In my (always humble) opinion, the best choice available to them. Good luck, Dr Williams. I look forward to working with you in your new role.

Tom Englehardt's seven reasons to get out of Afghanistan now

... which he cast as if given in a speech by President Obama : 1. We have no partner in Afghanistan. The control of the government of Afghan President Hamid Karzai hardly extends beyond the embattled capital of Kabul. He himself has just been returned to office in a presidential election in which voting fraud on an almost unimaginably large scale was the order of the day. His administration is believed to have lost all credibility with the Afghan people. 2. Afghanistan floats in a culture of corruption. This includes President Karzai’s administration up to its highest levels and also the warlords who control various areas and, like the Taliban insurgency, are to some degree dependent for their financing on opium, which the country produces in staggering quantities. Afghanistan, in fact, is not only a narco-state, but the leading narco-state on the planet. 3. Despite billions of dollars of American money poured into training the Afghan security forces, the army is notoriously underst

In which I announce my candidacy for Congress in Delaware's Second Congressional District

... because I think that I might actually have a shot there . The incumbent has been so ineffective as to be virtually invisible on the issues that matter to Delaware. He (or she, I could never tell) needs to go. My platform is simple: 1) I promise to triple the number of jobs created or saved in the district under the current stimulus programs. 2) I promise to double the number of people in the district receiving Medicaid benefits, even if that means providing completely free health insurance to some people now paying for it, just to hit my targets. 3) I am calling for the dsitrict to receive three times as much beach replenishment funding as it received last year. 4) I am not Mike Protack. 5) I am a firm believer in term limits, so I will pledge not to serve any more terms in the House of Representatives that necessary for me to supplement my State retirement with a Federal plan of equal or greater value. 6) Oh, and I'm not Colin Bonini, either. and, finally: 7) I have

A bumper sticker, a Bible, and--oops--some Jews! Let's throw the whole thing out!?

OK, it's tacky, and not really funny (neither were those T-shirts proclaiming that GHW Bush had wished that his wife had had an abortion before the nationa had an abortion for president), but is it really a reason to throw out the Old Testament? Delawaredem thinks so , first noting that the significance of the Psalm is in Psalm 109:9--the next verse: “Religious” conservatives have a new slogan that they are putting on bumper stickers and t-shirts. “Pray for Obama: Psalm 109:8″ What does Psalm 109:8 say? “Let his days be few; and let another take his office.” Well, that’s not bad. They are just praying for Obama to be replaced as President. Hey, I wanted Bush gone as President too, through his impeachment for war crimes. But let’s read the next verse that follows Psalm 109:8 which “religious” conservatives all so cleverly leave off the t-shirts and bumper stickers. “Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow.” So, it is pretty obvious that anyone repeating, wearin

Leviathans

There appears to be some sort of basic human compulsion that urges us to (a) amass wealth; (b) build larger and larger, increasingly hierarchical organizations; and (c) control other people's behavior even when said behaviors do not represent a threat to us. Otherwise I am at a loss to explain the reality of modern society that corporations spend their time attempting to emulate the worst abuses of the State, while simultaneously courting the State to provide them with special status and structural advantages over their smaller competitors. It intrigues me--and, quite frankly, disappoints me--that many if not most libertarians fail to see the reality that corporations do not represent the free market in action, but actually represent the overt use of anti-competitive State powers to distort the markets in their favor. Corporate owners enjoy State protection from personal liability for the use of force or fraud. Corporations enjoy due process rights as artificial persons equal

More Like This, PLEASE!

Judge Andrew Napolitano is one of the most passionate, articulate, and unflappable advocates of liberty and limited government around today... He is the author of 2007's A Nation of Sheep , as well as The Constitution in Exile: How the Federal Government Has Seized Power by Rewriting the Supreme Law of the Land. Kiss Your Freedoms Goodbye If Health Care Passes Why we cannot afford to sit out this fight Andrew Napolitano November 16, 2009 Congress recognizes no limits on its power. It doesn't care about the Constitution, it doesn't care about your inalienable rights. If this health care bill becomes law, America, life as you have known it, freedom as you have exercised it, and privacy as you have enjoyed it will cease to be. Last week the House of Representatives voted on a 2,000 page bill to give the federal government the power to micromanage the health care of every single American. The bill will raise your taxes, steal your freedom, invade your privacy, and ration yo

And we still don't know what the mission is

Sometimes it doesn't take paragraphs of analysis to get the point across. From Politics Daily : Half a million Americans have served two 12-month tours in Iraq or Afghanistan; 70,000 have served three combat tours; and 20,000 have served five or more deployments, according to Defense Department data. That's one out of every 600 American citizens.

A two-day hiatus followed by some quick hits

Soccer-induced fatigue rendered me incapable of producing any posts for nearly two days. No, not me: my daughter's team, the Western Family YMCA Bandits, won the statewide Kohl's Cup Tournament for rec leagues on Sunday, going 4-0-2. My daughter (who would like you all to know that she has not been infected with that libertarian thing ) plays goal and allowed exactly zero goals in six games. [The Bandits also won the regular season in their league, due in no small part to her .33 goals against average.] The weather was wonderful this year, but then--moments after winning--we had to rush out to the Charter School of Wilmington open house [for both of the twins]. This is high-school shopping season in Delaware, where choice and charter combine to produce a cross between selecting a college and a sorority/fraternity rush experience. It's kind of like speed-dating with high-school teachers. So I've been a bit behind in everything, and--frankly--I'm still exhaus

The wrong conclusions: American liberals are not Nazis (and I am amazed I have to say this)

As much as I like Jeff, who blogs at Alphecca , he's way off the deep in with this obvious comparison of the Obama administration's initiatives and Hitler's Nazis in Austria and Germany, as presented by Kitty Werthmann in North Dakota. Werthmann, who lived in Austria during the Nazi regime, delivered a blistering comparison between what happened under the Nazis and what is supposedly happening today under the current administration. Here are a few excerpts: Once the Nazis took control, the people no longer voted for government positions anymore; all positions down to the local level were filled by appointment. In the interest of a supposedly more efficient government, the Nazis decided to centralize all government between Germany and Austria. Hitler nationalized (socialized) the banks, health care, automobile production, education, and more.... Werthmann said Hitler expanded “equal rights” for women, which resulted in far more women going out into the work force. The

Terrorism and hate crimes: rethinking a position

One of the hallmarks of the current American political discourse is ossification: you can no longer seriously grapple with issues, because to be seen even considering a possible change in thinking is a sign of weakness and betrayal. The initial responses to my last post on the radicalization of American politics in response to the Fort Hood massacre is a case in point: an anti-abortion proponent jumped right in to essentially disavow the existentance of radicalized anti-abortion groups, implying that I had said there were only radicalized anti-abortion groups. The comment cites the case of Abby Johnson as a non-violent anti-abortion activist who is being harassed by a Planned Parenthood gag order , leaving out two salient facts made clear with the link provided in the comment : (1) Johnson is not prohibited from protesting, just talking about confidential medical and staff information; and (2) it would be illegal for her to share confidential patient health information in the

Of course Major Hasan qualifies as a terrorist--but that is the beginning rather than the end of the question

To note: despite Hube's characterization, in the only post I have written about Fort Hood, I described Major Hasan as a lone-wolf terrorist . By lone wolf I mean that there is currently no evidence that his massacre at Fort Hood was ordered by, directly supported by, or part of the specific agenda of any given group. He attended a radical mosque, he attempted contact with Al Qaeda, he became more overtly radical--but there still seem to be the primary characteristics of a lone wolf about him. Obviously, new data could change that interpretation. By terrorist I mean that he committed violence for a specific political/religious/ideological reason, at the very least to encourage other Muslims to do so, and to instill a sense of fear in Americans--especially American soldiers--that they can never be safe from retribution. Those are avowedly political objectives for murdering people who have done nothing except belong to a specific population, and that is the classic definition of

President Obama's gay-bashing Christian problem

I am reminded by the abrupt re-appearance of Pastor Donnie McClurkin, the rabidly anti-gay minister and early Barack Obama supporter , in a series of You-Tube videos chronicling his opinon that gay people are vampires that there is a specific reason why the President does not take any serious action on the issue of civil rights for gay Americans. [We've covered the Obama-McClurkin links here before.] It's against his religion. Aside from McClurkin (whose views then-Senator Obama distanced himself from, but whose support he has continued to court and enjoy in a back-channel wa) and anti-gay zealot Rick Warren (to whom the President gave a national platform at his inauguration), there is also the Circle of Five. NYT : President Obama has been without a pastor or a home church ever since he cut his ties to the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. in the heat of the presidential campaign. But he has quietly cultivated a handful of evangelical pastors for private prayer sessions on th

In which I prefer the Mormons to the idiots apparently running the Diocese of Washington DC

But, you know what? Individual subdivisions of the Catholic Church are entitled to whatever policy positions they like, as long as they get out of the business of taking the government's money. From WaPo : The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington said Wednesday that it will be unable to continue the social service programs it runs for the District if the city doesn't change a proposed same-sex marriage law, a threat that could affect tens of thousands of people the church helps with adoption, homelessness and health care. Under the bill, headed for a D.C. Council vote next month, religious organizations would not be required to perform or make space available for same-sex weddings. But they would have to obey city laws prohibiting discrimination against gay men and lesbians. Fearful that they could be forced, among other things, to extend employee benefits to same-sex married couples, church officials said they would have no choice but to abandon their contracts with the cit

Organizations to which I belong that promote genocide or homophobia...

... because some of our commenters have the strange idea that belonging to any organization whatever makes you responsible for any sins ever committed by that organization or removes all credibility from your views. They also seem to believe that belonging to any organization represents a blanket public statement that you endorse every single idea ever put forth by that organization. So I thought it would be important to list for my readers those organizations with which I have been involved that engage in genocide, oppression, homophobia, or discrimination, so that everyone can understand why my views on virtually any subject are completely worthless. 1) I spent twenty-one years of my adult life as a member of an organization that engaged in relentless genocidal wars across the North American continent, has on many occasions bombarded innocent civilians, has used nuclear weapons against undefended cities, and which has engaged in personnel management policies which have (or, in sev

Mmmm. Mmmm. Nothing like "reality-based" Government (from the "reality-based" left)

It is just so much easier to lie and fabricate than to live up to all that hope/change with some honesty and accountability, admitting that the Obamaleft's hyper-government solutions are a big honkin' epic FAIL, arguably prolonging the pain and joblessness (just as FDR did through the Depression), except for those few (and some purely fictitious) blessed with Obama stimulus patronage . And when your plans (predictably) FAIL, what better to cover up your FAIL than to double down on your economy-killing Keynesian pipe-dream with..... yet MORE of the same. Of course, the endlessly Orwellian lexicon-manipulating Obamamob, who are beginning to make the Bush II administration sound like straight talkers, are at least clever enough not to use the same terminology as their first and ongoing epic fail. This time it will be "additional investments". Blech, what a transparent charlatan, that one. Stimulus dishonesty Job numbers keep proving to be exaggerated Wednesday,

Did you ever wonder....

... that given our government's apparently insatiable appetite for our money, why it is we don't have universal health care already? Some folks suggest profits for Big Insurance and Big Pharma, but the thought occurs to me that even the most economically successful country in the world can only be plundered to a certain extent before it collapses, which means that our leaders have consistently had to make choices. Shorter: the government has enough tax revenue either to institute a welfare state or a warfare state , but not both at the same time. Gee. Guess which one our leaders have picked, and continue to pick, despite all high-sounding pretenses to the contrary.

Mormon Church supports what many Delaware conservatives don't: equal rights for LGBQT Americans in terms of housing and employment

Still trying to figure out what this means after they helped bankroll the attack against same-sex marriage in California, but it's progress. From Joe My God : Hours after the LDS Church announced its support Tuesday night of proposed Salt Lake City ordinances aimed at protecting gay and transgender residents from discrimination in housing and employment, the City Council unanimously approved the measures. "The church supports these ordinances," spokesman Michael Otterson told the council, "because they are fair and reasonable and do not do violence to the institution of marriage." They also are consistent with Mormon teachings, he said. "I believe in a church that believes in human dignity, in treating people with respect even when we disagree -- in fact, especially when we disagree." Normally more deliberate, the council opted to vote after dozens of residents in the overflowing crowd expressed their support. "Guaranteeing a right to fair hou

Because only the government can truly institutionalize discrimination....

We visit Phoenix AZ where the government has ruled that middle-class communities have the right to prevent the feeding of homeless people there. From Coyote [via AZ Republic ] A Phoenix ordinance banning charity dining halls in residential neighborhoods withstood a challenge by a north-central Phoenix church. Retired Arizona Supreme Court Justice Robert Corcoran, serving as a hearing officer, ruled Monday that feeding the homeless at a place of worship can be banned by city ordinance. The decision affects all Phoenix churches with underlying residential zoning. Over the summer, city officials maintained that CrossRoads United Methodist Church, 7901 N. Central Ave., violated Phoenix zoning code by feeding the poor and homeless on its property, a use that can only occur in commercial or industrial zones. Fortunately, we can assure Anonone [who worries that a Libertarian society would enshrine colored only signs] that the motive behind the people who do not want to allow homeless

Anita Done

In case you missed it, Mao-loving Obama WH uppity-up Anita Dunn has been tossed overboard , err...she wants "to spend more time with her teenage son." Reason's Tim Cavanaugh sends it up : Jake Tapper reports that Anita Dunn, tongue-chewing White House communications director, acolyte of Mao Zedong and Mother Theresa, and a frequent surprise guest in the Hit & Run comment threads, has been ousted by counterrevolutionary enemies of the people. Tapper, a running dog of the American Imperialist Broadcasting Company, says that Dunn was not made a non-person by capitalist stooges, but rather is leaving voluntarily. Dunn Pictured With Her Husband, Holding Their Cat "Chairman Meow"* *h/t - hilarious pseudonymous Reason blog commenter.

And, as usual, the Libertarian Party will miss this boat as well

Thanks to the underlying homophobia evidenced by the likes of Bob Barr and Wayne Root (both of whom conveniently believe that States have rights when it comes to policies like same-sex marriage), the Libertarian Party is missing its opportunity to pick up the undying loyalty of one of the most activist segments of the electorate: the LGBQT community. As Waldo puts it: Waldo admits: he got suckered by the Traditional Democratic Party Approach to gay rights: do the dinners, promise the moon, and kick the can down the road to the election cycle that, like Godot, never comes. We hang one simply because indifference is better than the active hate the GOP would be pursuing if they were in power.Time to, as Pam Spaulding says, cut off the gayTM. Waldo then goes on to cite Americablog's well-documented list of nearly forty Obama administration slights and broken promises to the gay community, including such winners as Asking a religious right activist who claims to have been “cur

Leslie Gelb exposes the truth about Afghanistan and General McChrystal's numbers game

It's in today's Daily Beast , and even though it has been said here and elsewhere before, reaching the MSM with this story is a good thing. General McChrystal is being not just disingenuous but damn near dishonest, as Leslie Gelb details: The key for McChrystal is getting the 44,000 troops in battle within the next 12 months. But that just can’t be done. The most optimistic assessment comes from Kimberly Kagan of the ever-optimistic, fighting Kagans (the others being Bob and Fred). According to The Wall Street Journal, her recent study for the Institute for the Study of War assessed that “it would be difficult to move enough troops from other posts to deploy anywhere close to 40,000 troops before next summer at the earliest." U.S. armed forces are so thinned out and ill-prepared from having to fight two wars and stay ready for a slew of other conflicts that it is indeed “difficult,” if not outright impossible, to deploy the requested troops in time to head off McChrysta