My introduction to Thomas Sowell is simply from reading syndicated newspaper columns in the Lansing State Journal.
The man is so awesome in his past and present that I have neither time nor energy to fully explain the awesomeness on this birthday, perhaps the next one.
No one read this anyway.
SooperMexican explains why he is a Sowell Man here.
Now, if you want to buy some Thomas Sowell books.... do it through my Amazon store and not Sooper's, because I am greedy.
Sunday, June 30, 2013
US Senators Charles Schumer, Democrat, and John McCain, Republican are on Fox News Sunday. Right now Chuck Schumer looks like a cross between Frank Langella and an animatronic wax figure.
Thursday, June 27, 2013
from Jim MacQuarrie:
There is a species of human out there who thinks that conversations have to have winners, and more importantly, losers. They love political discussions because of the wealth of grist for the mill. They care passionately about their position, but they care a lot more about "shutting up the opposition." They don't want to discuss the subject, they want to defeat an opponent. What you call a conversation is to them a form of jousting. They don't want to convince you or share their views, they aren't interested in hearing other views or learning anything. They don't even want a rousing debate. They want to defeat an opponent. They will use logical fallacies, cherry-picked data, specious arguments, moving goalposts, distortions and misrepresentations, whatever it takes to make the other person concede defeat. Leaving the conversation is such a concession. Getting angry and insulting them is another. It's almost a form of trolling, except that they aren't trying to provoke you to anger. They really think they're engaging in political debate, but what they're really doing is what puppies do- starting a fake fight as a way to assert their dominance.
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Texas Filibuster: No matter whether you find the issue of abortion as foul and repulsive, or that it's a necessary medical procedure, I personally admire Wendy Davis for standing up for her abhorrent beliefs. That takes more Balls Than Boehner's Got all day long.
-- Rick Moore
TX Dems try to keep Kermit Gosnell-like abortion mills open using filibuster and mob rule. And they fail. Well done, TX GOP. #SB5
Right now on the Senate floor, Wendy Davis is filibustering a bill that, if passed, will protect those among us that cannot speak for themselves. Those that do not have a voice. The innocent. The unborn.
Wendy Davis is holding that bill hostage so that it does not pass. She wants the world to think she's doing this to stand for "women" and "families". That, my friends, is the height of hypocrisy. So typical of a politician - to use something like this for political gain.
I say... enough. Wendy Davis does NOT speak for me.
Pass it on.
“The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends,” Ser Jorah told her. “It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace.” He gave a shrug. “They never are.”
Martin, George R.R. (2011-03-22). A Game of Thrones 4-Book Bundle: A Song of Ice and Fire Series: A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, and A Feast for Crows (Song of Ice & Fire) (Kindle Locations 3915-3917). Random House Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
A Tribute to Margaret Thatcher
Larry P. Arnn
The following is adapted from remarks delivered at a ceremony in
honor of Margaret Thatcher sponsored by the Hillsdale chapter of Young
Americans for Freedom on April 22, 2013.
President, Hillsdale College
Margaret Thatcher was born in 1925, in October. Her father was a grocer. She was born in Lincolnshire, in the middle of England. She studied chemistry at Oxford. In 1959 she got elected to Parliament for Finchley, which she represented until she retired from the House of Commons in 1992. She’s one of the great prime ministers in British history, and one of the longest serving, at least in continuous times.
I happened to live in England when Mrs. Thatcher’s party won the 1979 election and she became prime minister— the first woman to do so. It was better than watching sports on television. There was nothing like it. Every day she would do something big, and every day she would not apologize for it, even when reporters would press her. You just never saw anyone so direct or clear of speech.
Mrs. Thatcher faced a situation in Britain that was devastating, much like the situation we have today in our own country. What she did was to make plain that situation and to place great faith in the people of her country, and then when they were asked to choose, they chose for her over and over again. Indeed, she never lost an election after she won the first one. She only lost her job as prime minister because her party got tired of her. They were not as strong as she was and they threw her out, and she left very nobly.
I’ll tell you two quick stories about her. The first concerns a coal strike led by a very left wing man named Arthur Scargill, who was the head of the coal miners union. That union was powerful because people got their heat from coal, and if the union didn’t mine coal in the winter, people got cold.
The major political party opposed to Mrs. Thatcher’s Conservative party, the Labor party, was basically controlled at that time in its governing structure by the labor unions, and the worst and most aggressive of them was the coal miners. So the Prime Minister stood largely alone, and great powers were arrayed against her. And what she did was store up a bunch of coal to get ready for a strike because she knew Mr. Scargill was going to call one, and he did call one. The coal mining regions of the country had thousands of people picketing, and parts of the country basically ceased to function.
This had happened many times in the past, and the government had capitulated. But this time there was Mrs. Thatcher at the head of the government, and there was something called the Battle of Orgreave, in which five thousand miners clashed with five thousand policemen. The policemen triumphed, and there were over 100 casualties. That was a battle for the soul of the country, and the Prime Minister was very clear about it. She explained that the stakes were enormous and that the government was going to stand up for the country. There was no wiggle in her. She didn’t budge. And what happened was that a large part of the membership of the miners union broke off, formed their own union, and made a deal that was in their interest but was not what Scargill had demanded. So Mrs. Thatcher basically broke that strike, and she broke that kind of unionism. The other kind—the kind where people act under laws that are fair, and where unions don’t take over parts of the country or the property of others—that kind of unionism thrives in Britain today. And so far there has not been an effort to bring back the destructive kind.
My second story concerns terrorism. You probably know that Mrs. Thatcher was almost killed when IRA terrorists put a bomb in her hotel during the annual Conservative Party Conference in 1984. They checked into that hotel months in advance and planted an explosive device set to go off near where the Prime Minister slept. It did go off, and it killed five people, but Mrs. Thatcher was working late and her life was spared.
IRA terrorists had previously killed one of her best friends, a man named Airey Neave, a distinguished soldier in World War II and one of the few men to escape the German POW camp at Colditz. He was very close to Mrs. Thatcher, and he was the Shadow Secretary for Northern Ireland. Shortly before she became prime minister, the terrorists placed a bomb in Neave’s car set to explode when the car was at a certain angle coming out of the parking lot underneath the House of Commons, and Airey Neave was killed, having survived the Nazis.
So Margaret Thatcher had strong reasons to oppose terrorism. And when it happened that several IRA terrorists, the key one being a man named Bobby Sands, went on a hunger strike in the Maze prison in Northern Ireland—they were demanding to be classified as political prisoners rather than as criminals—she stood firm as they starved themselves to death. Over and over, she stated her position forthrightly: “Crime is crime is crime. It is not political. It is crime.” And what that meant was that those terrorists had chosen the wrong time to go on a hunger strike.
I’ll tell you what I think all that means. I’ve thought about this most of my adult life, and much of what I think about it is informed by having watched Mrs. Thatcher. We live in an age when a new kind of government has been invented, and it’s not so much that it has different aims, although it does have many different aims, but that it proceeds by a different method—through rules made by so-called experts, who gather the forces of government over themselves.
There’s an agency that has been created recently in the United States, and that agency does not get its budget from the Congress of the United States, but from a percentage of the revenues of the Federal Reserve, which gets its revenues as a government monopoly bank. This new agency has regulatory power that may affect us as a college and will certainly affect each of us as individuals. And Congress is forbidden to hold hearings on the budget of that agency, and that agency routinely refuses inquiries from Congress about its operations. That means it is sealed off from popular control. And the weight and scale of the government run by this new method means that there’s some chance that the government is going to overwhelm the society. That is the very abnegation of liberal politics—liberal in the sense of a free people managing those who govern them because human beings are born equal, with equal rights.
The greatest defender and servant of this principle of liberal government that I have seen in my lifetime is Margaret Thatcher, and I pray that we will see the likes of her again, because the battle over this kind of government is upon us again. For making clear that the right way of government is to operate under a constitution, and under the control of free people, and for fighting for constitutionalism more effectively than anyone in our time, we today remember Baroness Thatcher of Kesteven.
Reprinted by permission from Imprimis, a publication of Hillsdale College.
Saturday, June 22, 2013
Monday, June 17, 2013
This is certainly why ideologues become problematic in an active and/or functional sociopolitical movement.
Tom Watkins did the explaining for the Lansing State Journal.
Go ahead tea party, sit on your hands. Toss your governor overboard. Help elect Democrat Mark Schauer to be the next Michigan governor. It certainly is an interesting tea party political strategy to help knock off a sitting moderate/conservative Republican only to replace him with a liberal/moderate Democrat. Democrats who are not laughing at you are certainly smiling.A fine metaphor for this would be to be murder a child if the child doesn't walk. I don't entirely endorse the metaphor. I am not a proponent of the "Medicaid expansion", which to an extent is the buzzphrase we're enduring now. Yet I would not use that as an artificial line marking when I would actively let Mark Schauer of all people be Governor.
Tom Watkins did the explaining for the Lansing State Journal.
Canadian National Review columnist Mark Steyn notes how the United States' security and intelligence infrastructure has grown in size, vague legal authority and power, eliminating limitations on who it can scan while simultaneously weakening itself simply by diminishing effectiveness.
It began by noting the observation of President Bush’s transportation secretary, Norman Mineta, that if “a 70-year-old white woman from Vero Beach, Florida” and “a Muslim young man” were in line to board a flight, he hoped there would be no difference in the scrutiny to which each would be subjected. The TSA was then barely a twinkle in Norm’s eye, and in that long-ago primitive era it would have seemed absurd to people that one day in America it would be entirely routine for wheelchair-bound nonagenarians to remove leg braces before boarding a plane or for kindergartners to stand patiently as three middle-aged latex-gloved officials poke around their genitals. Back then, the idea that everybody is a suspect still seemed slightly crazy. As I wrote in my column, “I’d love to see Norm get his own cop show:
“Captain Mineta, the witness says the serial rapist’s about 5′10″ with a thin mustache and a scar down his right cheek.”A decade on, it would be asking too much for the new Norm to be confined to the airport terminal. There are 300 million stories in the Naked Republic, and the NSA hears all of them, 24/7. Even in the wake of a four-figure death toll, with the burial pit still smoking, the formal, visible state could not be honest about the very particular threat it faced, and so in the shadows the unseen state grew remorselessly, the blades of the harvester whirring endlessly but, don’t worry, only for “metadata.” As I wrote in National Review in November 2001, “The bigger you make the government, the more you entrust to it, the more powers you give it to nose around the citizenry’s bank accounts, and phone calls, and e-mails, and favorite Internet porn sites, the more you’ll enfeeble it with the siren song of the soft target. The Mounties will no longer get their man, they’ll get you instead. Frankly, it’s a lot easier.” As the IRS scandal reminds us, you have to have a touchingly naïve view of government to believe that the 99.9999 percent of “metadata” entirely irrelevant to terrorism will not be put to some use, sooner or later... We’re told that universal surveillance has prevented all kinds of atrocities we can never hear about — an answer straight out of Orwell. Yet oddly, in the ones we do hear about, the perps are hiding in plain sight (Major Hasan with “Soldier of Allah” on his business card), the intelligence services do nothing (the Pantybomber known to the CIA but still permitted to board the plane), and the digital superstate is useless (the Tsarnaev photo rang no bells with the facial-recognition software, but was identified by friends who saw it on TV).
“Okay, Sergeant, I want you to pull everyone in.”
“Everyone. Men, women, children. We’ll start in the Bronx and work our way through to Staten Island. What matters here is that we not appear to be looking for people who appear to look like the appearance of the people we’re looking for. There are eight million stories in the Naked City, and I want to hear all of them.”
Friday, June 14, 2013
"Will you stand by and allow me to do as I would? You cannot confine me effectively, or stop me from committing whatever caprices I care to. Or will you kill me, good Superman?"
"You're talking nonsense."
"Nonsense?" She held up an open palm to the big Radio Corporation building across the plaza and a bolt of heat energy burst through the air in the building's direction. Superman met the bolt halfway with his chest and the force dissipated into the air. "Is this destructive power nonsense?"
"No," Superman said, "Your power is not nonsense. The idea that I would kill you simply because you misdirect it, however, is ridiculous."
"You prattling, idealistic fool. Do you expect me to stop of my own accord?"
"No, I don't. Unfortunately, I don't expect that at all."
"Then what do you expect to do about me?"
"Whatever I do with criminals and destructive forces like you. I'll follow you," Superman said, casually unshakable in his conviction that there was a good and an evil in the Universe, and determined to be a force for the good.
"You would follow me to the bowels of the Earth?"
"Certainly. Wherever you choose to vent your spleen I'll be there to stop you. It's as simple as that."
"To the rim of the Universe?"
"I think you're being melodramatic. I'll follow you to the ends of Creation. I look forward to seeing places where I've never been, and I don't suppose there could be a nobler mission for a Superman."
- Elliot S Maggin, "Miracle Monday" (1981)
Thursday, June 13, 2013
About half a week ago Glenn Greenwald wrote an article published in the UK Guardian presenting Edward Snowden as a recently-revealed historic figure, "the source" of the "security leaks", the "whistleblower", the magnificent Revelator of the government of the United States violating the privacy, individual security and liberty of each and every one of its citizens, and we find that Snowden does this for patriotic reasons.
I never even read the damn article.
I suppose I have to.
I dispute the significance of this human being.
I never even read the damn article.
I suppose I have to.
I dispute the significance of this human being.