Contributed by: filbert Wednesday, January 27 2010 @ 08:30 AM CST
I surf the Web, so you don’t have to!
Section One: The Word:
An occasional comment, rant, or snark, brought on by the flow of events:
Good Government Plan–the Medary/Filbert State of the Union Plan For The Future (it’s a bit choppy–sorry about that . . . it’s not a speech, after all, it’s more of a rant . . .):
Government has served us badly. The sector of American society which is most out of control is government–it has failed to govern well, it has failed to govern efficiently, it has failed to govern responsibly, it has failed to govern humanely, it has failed to govern–period. Government can not make us happy. The best government can do is to enforce the laws. We have forgotten these simple facts. We must re-remember them. We must recognize is that THE ONLY ENTITLEMENT we have from government is the entitlement of the fair, impartial execution of the rule of law. The government is not an instrument of “social justice” but an instrument of REAL justice. Justice must mean one thing to all people–justice must once again become blind to all of the differences which separate us–wealth, race, class, gender, or anything else. No person is entitled to the life, liberty, or property of another person–not in this country, the United States of America. The rich are not entitled to the property of the poor any more than the poor are entitled to the property of the rich. The sick are not entitled to the time of the healer, just as the healer is not entitled to an unearned income from his or her charges. For too long, government has been the instrument of the rich against the poor, or the poor against the rich; the elites against the masses, and occasionally the masses against the elites.
These are symptoms–symptoms of a government which has grown too powerful–“too big to fail” in the current vernacular. But a government which is too big to fail has already failed in its fundamental duty–the duty to fairly and impartially enforce the rule of law.
Time is short. We must not fail to deal with these problems now–and deal with them properly and rationally this time, not wildly and emotionally, as we have done in the past.
Here’s part of what we need to do:
Our only hope to avoid the economic ruin of national bankruptcy is to grow our economy fast enough to avoid the utter, complete, total disaster we are facing. Government programs can’t do that. The only thing we know of that CAN do that is the power, the ingenuity and the enterprise of the American people, unleashed from the shackles of government interference and intervention. We have seen, over and over and over again, that government does not produce anything except more government. Government is indeed the major reason why we now have the problems we have. Government is not the solution. Government has no solution to the problems we face. The people, acting as a free people in a free market, are the solution.
The area where government has failed the most tragically is by stupidly obligating us to pay for an ever-increasing number of “entitlements” which we simply can not afford. We must address the “entitlement” question–Social Security, Medicare–or we will fail and fall.
We can not afford to be the world’s policeman, and we can not afford to be the world’s emergency response squad. We must defend America and Americans–that is the purpose of our military and our national defense infrastructure. Everything we do in foreign affairs and in military affairs must be with this in mind–America and Americans First.
Immediate, across-the-board, 10% cut in all non-defense government spending. The ENTIRE proceeds of which is returned to the American taxpayers–Oh, wait. It gets better . . .
Complete, independent, third-party audits of every, single, solitary entity which exerts in any way power authorized by or delegated from the Federal Government, including and especially the Federal Reserve. Results of the audits are not only public, but posted online as soon as they are completed. Agencies that fail the audit are subject to elimination and consolidation with more responsible governmental organizations.
Enact a flat income tax–a single percentage tax on all personal income, from whatever source derived. The first . . . oh . . . say . . . $20,000 of income for singles, $40,000 for married couples, plus $10,000 for each minor child . . . is totally exempt from tax. Capital Gains taxes are abolished (capital gains now considered as regular personal income); corporate income taxes are abolished (we all know that they just get passed through to consumers anyway). Propose a Constitutional Amendment that a national personal income tax and a national sales or VAT tax may not be levied in the same year–to eliminate the inevitable temptation to do both–keeping the politician’s hands out of the cookie jar, so to speak.
Make Social Security/Medicare actuarially sound. The only way to achieve this, I’m afraid, is to shut it down and re-build it from scratch. We are on the hook for everyone who is alive at the time that this reform is enacted, I’m afraid. But the obscenity of using the Social Security Trust Fund as a Ponzi scheme to fund the Federal government through the back door must end. Close down the existing Social Security–don’t allow new people to enter that corrupt, broken system–and pay the damn thing off out of general revenues. Create a diversified and robust National Retirement System based primarily on private funds, but augmented to ensure a basic sustenance level for all Americans who have responsibly paid into the system. No pay, no play, however. Separate health care from National Retirement–they are two different things.
Open the national market for medical insurance. Make medical spending accounts easier to open and fund for normal, working-class citizens. Exempt MSA funding from income taxation up to some nominal amount ($10,000 a year?). Exempt MSA interest earned from income taxation if the money stays in the MSA. Allow the same income tax exemption for one person to fund another person’s MSA (promoting person-to-person charity.)
Begin bringing American troops home from Japan and from Europe, especially Germany. We won World War II sixty-five years ago. We don’t need to continue to occupy Japan and Germany, let alone Iraq. We also don’t need to base our troops in other European countries who don’t think they need to pay for their defense because that’s what Americans are for. Wrong. American military forces are to defend America and Americans, not to defend British, Spanish, Italians, or anybody else. We are not your mercenaries. We are, if you are still willing, your allies–which means that you have responsibilities to uphold, too–responsibilities you have been shirking for far too long.
Abolish by Executive Order all violations of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments currently in law or regulation of the Federal Government. The President, and each and every member of Congress, is sworn to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution. It isn’t just the Judicial Branch which is tasked with protecting the Constitution–it’s all three branches of the Federal Government. It’s far past time for Congress and the President to start taking that oath seriously, to serve the American People.
Enact a rational energy policy: Exploit the national reserves of gas and oil to the maximum extent, and accelerate research into alternative energies–especially fusion. Eliminate unnecessary red tape hindering construction of power plants, especially nuclear power plants. End the disastrous, Quixotic tilt at “climate change,” redirecting research funds to research into adaptation strategies.
Vigorously, aggressively investigate and prosecute all instances of voter intimidation and vote fraud.
Simplify, Streamline, and Strengthen U.S. Immigration procedures and Border protection. Make it easier for good people to come to the U.S. and harder for bad people to get into the U.S.
Immediately sell off GM, Chrysler, and any other private company wholly or partially owned by the U.S. Government. If they fail, they fail. The government’s job is to enforce the laws, not to ensure that specific companies continue to wheeze along.
Oh, there’s much, much more, (abolish the Department of Education, terminate Federal funding for the NEA/NEH/PBS/NPR, eliminate the ICC, rein in and downsize the FCC, etc., etc.) but that’s just fifteen minutes, off the top of my head . . .
More, including the nearly daily link extravaganza, after the “Read More” . . . Section Two: Things That Amuse Me:
Rare rhinos de-horned to frustrate poachers [*1] — Not simians, but happy about a story of rhinos that isn’t about American politics. Sad and a bit angry that people felt the need to saw the rhinos’ horns off to keep them safe from poachers. What is wrong with some people!
Is That 44 Geckos in Your Pants, Or Are You Just Happy to See Me? [*2] — Geckos. Not simians. Not insurance salesmen, either, although from the title, you may wonder about that . . .
Why Humans Outlive Apes [*3]
No travel today. As such, anyway.
Jacks second half starts on the road [*4]
Watch the men’s basketball game at ORU live on FCS [*5]
Royals 2010 schedule [*6]
No defense for UMKC in loss to NDSU [*7]
Tennessee counters scoring woes with defense [*8]
2.4: Science Fiction and Writing:
Avatar and Individual Rights [*9] — Hmm. Has much of the right utterly missed the point of Avatar?
No miscellany. Odd, innit?
2.6: Science, technology, and space:
Low-carb diet best for lowering blood pressure [*10]
A New Theory Of Electrodynamics [*11] — Stunning breakthrough in physics, or utter bull-doodoo? Hell, I don’t know . . . they use lots of big words, though . . .
Apple tablet can’t save print on its own: analysts [*12] — “print” in this context meaning books, newspapers, magazines, all that traditionally dead-tree stuff with words printed on them–that kind of thing . . .
Facebook may “lock in” its Internet dominance [*13] — I’m not sure “Internet dominance” is EVER “locked in” . . .
Section Three: The News, featuring Liberty And Its Enemies:
3.1: Strategy and tactics for defending human freedom and liberty:
The truth behind the tea parties [*14] — “With her retirement plans shattered by the economic collapse of 2008, Reimer became a local leader in the cause because she felt helpless watching Washington make a bad situation even worse. “It’s not that President Obama caused all of this,” she tells me. “It’s just that things are getting worse, and they don’t listen to anyone. Talking to my senators — to Casey and Specter — is like talking to this wall.”” — If politicians of both parties don’t listen and react appropriately to the anger, they–in both parties–will feel it very personally and intimately this November.
The Blue Assumptions [*15] — Four erroneous assumptions often made by “liberals” . . .
one ring to rule them all [*16] — LOTR is nothing if it is not a parable about the dangerous corrupting influence of power–ANY power–on us normal “little people” . . .
Ninth Configurations: Rights “retained by the people” make a comeback [*17] — Once again, if you have to depend on someone else to give it to you, it can’t be a “right.” Thus, you have the right to life, because you don’t need anybody else to give it to you. You do not, however, have the right to demand that somebody else give you “health care.” This is a blatant violation of that other person’s rights to their own life. Now, you can negotiate to purchase health care services, just like you can negotiate to purchase any other good or service. But goods and services are not, CAN NOT be “rights” without completely eviscerating the very concept of “right.”
GOP “Purity Test”[*18]
Laffer on Bernanke[*19] — So, we’ll put Laffer down as ‘Not A Fan of Bernanke’ . . .
Doctors Frank and Stein [*20]
Fighting IP Absurdity: The South Butt Strikes Back [*21]
Was Glenn Beck’s History Correct? [*22]
Advice to Barack Obama by Two People Who Didn’t Vote for Him (or John McCain)–But just might if he ever got serious about governing. [*23] — “This year, the SOTU can, should, and won’t be remarkably brief, sparing us the Castro-length perorations of the Clinton years and the rhetorical mediocrity of the Bush era.” They might be on to something here. For every minute under 30 Obama shaves off the speech, I bet he gains at least one percentage point of popularity–from the vast majority who just want him to just Shut The Hell Up and Go Away For A While–And Take Nancy Pelosi And Harry Reid With You, Pretty-Please.
TRAILER: Tea Party: The Documentary Film[*24]
Thank You All For Your Support [*25] — The Hillbuzz guys from Boystown fight the good fight–a fight they didn’t deserve–against the usual forces of darkness on the Left . . . If you have voted for Democrats recently, this is what you have brought politics to–with your perhaps unthinking devotion to what the Democratic Party used to be while being oblivious to what it has become in the Age of Obama. . . This is NOT the Democratic Party of Harry Truman or of John F. Kennedy–far, far, far from it . . .
Poll Shows Scott Brown Would Top Obama In Presidential Run [*26]
3 in 10 Californians identify with the Tea Party; a third still don’t believe Obama’s birth certificate [*27]
Dems’ new midterm strategy: Make the election about … Birtherism [*28] — I have this mental image of one of those cartoon exploding cigars, and the Democrats smugly lighting it up, saying “This time we’re sure to win!” BANG!!!
Reinforcements are arriving [*29] — Sometimes, the best way to defeat the truly evil among us is to simply stand up to them . . .
Too tired, but never tired enough! [*30]
3.2: The reality of Obama and the Democrat leadership as blithering idiots:
Magical Thinking [*31]
Breaking: Senate says no to bipartisan deficit commission [*32]
Rasmussen Generic Congressional: 46% to 37%, Republican Advantage [*33] — When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging . . . will the Democrats obey the First Rule of Holes?
All Out Attack By The Left On The Filibuster [*34] — Considering that Democrats may find themselves in the minority soon, and possibly for a very, very, very long time, they may want to re-think this . . .
Obama the next Herbert Hoover? [*35] — Actually, he appears to combine the worst tendencies of Hoover AND FDR . . .
Jon Stewart: You didn’t really use a teleprompter inside a classroom, did you, champ? [*36]
Democratic Senate Campaign Committee Officially Out Of Ideas, Suggests Turning Campaigns Into Blog Comment Fights [*37] — No, no, no, Senators . . . leave the cheap snark to US. thank you very much. We’re better at it than you could ever hope to be, anyway . . . and you will always, ALWAYS be better snark-targets than we, the People. This is a battle you will not win. Trust me here.
Obama: Hey, maybe this ObamaCare process should have been more transparent [*38] — On the other hand, it does eventually get to the point where you just sigh and shake your head sadly . . .
Obama Dithered as Economic War Raged [*39]
Obama’s Latest Concession to the Gipper’s Ideology [*40] — This is called Losing The Argument Before You Even Start . . . Save us all much trouble and grief, Barry . . . just give up now and walk away . . . you will be remembered better by history if you do . . .
Obama Refers to Himself 132 Times In One Speech (Video) [*41]
None dare call it Stimulus II [*42] — “It’s Return of the Crap Sandwich.”
Is Obama “undervalued”? [*43] — I tend to be a contrarian, but no, I don’t think Obama has quite hit bottom yet . . . he’s got some long ways to fall still . . .
Report: ‘Thin-Skinned’ Obama Says ‘Press Is Against Me’… [*44] — Obama obviously wouldn’t have lasted five minutes against the vitriol thrown at George W. Bush . . .
President Obama Flunks Campaign Finance 101 [*45]
Guaranteed to piss tons of people off today: we now want every last Democrat in elected office to lose in 2010 [*46] — I’d say taking a couple of young gay activist Chicago Democrats and turning them completely, utterly, totally against everything the Democratic Party stands for now qualifies the leadership of that same Democratic Party as “blithering idiots,” wouldn’t you?
Dem Rep Admits: “We’re Told to Call It a Jobs Bill Not a Stimulus Bill” [*47] — Another reason the now dominant species of Democrat deserves derision–their really, really stupid word games . . .
Only 30% of Voters Would Re-elect Obama [*48] — . . . and guess what? Derision is what they’re getting . . .
Cover Your Ears: Protecting democracy by protecting voters from clashing opinions [*49] — And when the Democratic National Socialists aren’t raping the English Language to score cheap political points, they’re trying to muzzle anyone who might speak against them. Nice people, our friends, the collectivists . . .
3.3: The reality of the Republican leadership as blithering idiots–SPECIAL Can James O’Keefe Be That Stupid Edition:
Ruh-Roh [*50] — Could O’Keefe really be that stupid? Sure, he could, but then we have the New Orleans/Louisiana corruption factor, the echo of Watergate, the participation of the son of a DA (?!?!?) — the WTF factor on this is totally off the charts. There’s a really, really interesting story, here. I hope we hear ALL of it . . .
Ugh: ACORN-buster busted at Sen. Landrieu’s office in alleged bugging plot; affidavit link added; Update: “Veritas”? [*51]
James O’Keefe arrested for trying to tap Mary Landrieu’s phones [*52] — Yeah, they’re not exactly the Republican Leadership, or even the Watergate Plumbers, but you’d think that Republicans of all people would have more sense than to even look like they were trying to bug an opponent politican’s offices . . . don’t they teach history any more–even recent history?
The Chuck Colson of His Generation? UPDATE: Big Government Editor Mike Flynn Talks to Reason [*53]
James O’Keefe Arrested in New Orleans [*54]
Bayou Watergate [*55] — “I guess every generation or so someone has to learn that trying to tap telephones for political gain rarely ends well.”
MSM Leaping to Conclusions — While Big Government Waits for Facts [*56] — It’s true, there are large elements of high strangeness to this story . . .
3.4: Opposition Research: The enemies of human freedom and liberty:
2010 Democrat Stategy: Divide and Conquer [*57] — That’s pretty much always the strategy, isn’t it? “Those evil (fill in the blank) need to be stopped, and only we virtuous Democrats can stop them!” Now, to be honest, the Republicans use that too, far too often, rather than simply promoting human freedom and liberty . . .
Revealed: Ellie Light is a Nurse Named Barbara Brooks [*58]
A good walk spoiled [*59] — No, no, we mean those OTHER evil special interests, not the ones backing our cynical powerplay! The ones opposed to our cynical powerplay!
Director Adam McKay: SCOTUS Ruling in Favor of Free Speech is ‘Treason’ [*60] — “I do not think the word means what you think it means . . .”
“Ellie Light” story turns a little bit freaky and a whole lot deaky [*61]
Left in full freakout mode over Obama’s spending freeze [*62]
Good news: “Ellie Light” comes clean, admits she’s a guy [*63] — By the way, collectivist/”progressives” lie. Where have you heard that before?
Moody Blues: Barack Obama, the Angry Left and the politics of intellectual contempt. [*64]
Guessing What President Obama Might Say in His State of the Union [*65] — I think we should all invite Obama to come to the center of American Politics, where he claimed to be running all along–from the far, far, far, far, far left where he has been governing. If he does this, he just might save his Presidency. If he doesn’t, he won’t. Simple as that.
DSCC Proposes Taking Coakley Strategy nationwide [*66] — Meanwhile, The Band Plays On . . .
Sarah Palin Clobbbers Radical Women’s Group Over Tim Tebow Super Bowl Ad [*67] — i’ve never understood the attitude where to be opposed to abortion is Simply Not Allowed–not just something you disagree with, but something that Must Not Be Discussed . . .
3.5: Media bias–and incompetence:
A Word About Campaign Finance Laws [*68]
PPP poll: Fox really is the most trusted name in TV news [*69] — A brief ray of unbiased sunshine in the otherwise dismal fever swamp which is the Old Media . . . and PPP are Democratic pollsters, by the way . . .
Number of Subscribers for Newsday’s Online-Only Content? Take a Guess (Guess Low) [*70]
Looks like CNN will have to change its motto [*71] — CNN, the SECOND Most Trusted Name In News (only because MSNBC is really, truly, THAT pathetic) . . .
3.6: Fear The ‘Cuda–A spotlight on Citizen Palin, who really needs to find a better phrase than “Common-sense conservatism” to describe her philosophy:
Conservatives 4 Palin [*72] –Semi-permanent link for Palinmania . . .
3.7: “Global warming” aka “Climate change” — or should that be “Climate Reform?”:
Catastrophe Denied: The Science of the Skeptic’s Position[*73]
More bogus AGW information in IPCC report? [*74]
3.8: Health care “reform” aka health insurance “reform” — or should that be health care “change?” Perhaps “Global healthing?:
GOP threatens Dems: If you try reconciliation, we’ll go nuclear with amendments; Breaking from NYT: Dems “slam the brakes” on ObamaCare [*75] — I think, this time, it might be really dead, but Jeez, this damn thing has more lives than the villain of a particularly bad horror movie . . .
Has It Finally Gone Where the Goblins Go? [*76] — I expect at least one more last-second resurrection–the bill, clutching its menacing surgical scalpel, emerges from the fresh burial soil, seeking to once again plunge its filthy blade into the pure flesh of the American Public–and I don’t even watch that kind of horror movie (I tend to laugh at inappropriate times, don’t cha know) . . .
Health Care: It’s Not Just Resting, It’s Dead [*77] — I still dunno . . . Never Trust A Politician, especially when He’s Talking About Your Money (I originally typed “Democrat” but no, it’s much more widespread than that) . . .
3.9: The Economy:
CBO Gently Reminds America of Coming Budgepocalypse [*78] — Oh, by the way, WE ARE SO SCREWED, and we did it to ourselves . . .
3.10: Foreign affairs and National Security:
Why They Hate Us: Middle Eastern Politics and the Principle of the Strong Horse [*79]
Question: How can Port-au-Prince be rebuilt? [*80] — It would almost be funny if it didn’t quite bitterly highlight the rank hypocrisy of the Green Left: “We’d like to issue a challenge to Liberals, one they failed to live up to in New Orleans: rebuild Port-au-Prince as the Green Utopia you insist is possible.” So, instead of installing the true rule of law and promoting human freedom and liberty, the Leftists will merrily go into Haiti and build frickin’ windmills. And nothing will change–Haiti will still be a festering shithole. Because it’s not about the energy-efficient buildings. It’s The Liberty, Stupid.