Visit this site for verifiably accurate opinions on all things political - in contradistinction to the INcorrect opinions you are likely to find elsewhere. I'm an American Libertarian Nationalist Republican. Ponder that one a while. Almost all are welcome, but at the request of management: no vegetarians or soccer fans, please. We have our reasons. Thank you and welcome to: Revealed Truth.
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Saturday, January 11, 2003
Senator Schumer is a Liar
It's just that simple. His Fraudulency went in front of microphones and said this about Judge Charles Pickering:
"Why anyone would go the whole nine yards and then some to get a lighter sentence for a convicted cross burner is beyond me. Why anyone would do that — in 1994 and in a state with Mississippi's history — is simply mind-boggling."
The Democrats have a clear strategy on judicial nominations. They used it against Robert Bork. They used it against Clarence Thomas. And now they're using it against Charles Pickering. The Big Lie.
They take a situation and twist the facts to justify slandering their target - usually so as to call him a racist. They know that the defense against the charge, which will inevitably involve the recitation of a long list of actual facts, will make much less impression than their original charge. Which in this case is: "Charles Pickering is a Racist!"
Here's the truth about the cross-burning case to which Schumer refers. Read it, and you'll see what I mean. He isn't just shading facts, or being disingenuous. Look at the facts of the case, then look at what Schumer said, and you will come to the same conclusion.
Charles Schumer is a liar.
Friday, January 10, 2003
Remember the TV show Green Acres? It was always one of my favorites. The utter absurdity of Ivy League lawyer Oliver Wendell Douglas, plowing his fields in a three piece suit...and his Hungarian wife Lisa (played by Eva Gabor) gathering eggs in an evening gown. That's priceless stuff.
Can you visualize Lisa Douglas? Close your eyes. Ooops. Now you can't read this. Never mind. Open your eyes.
Now pretend she has red hair. That's right. Now crank her IQ down about 20 points. Slowly...slowly.....there!
Now. Have her say something like: "I once wrote a FANTASTICALLY successful biography of Pablo Picasso!"
Voila! Ariana Huffington!
This imbecilic blight on America via Greece and Cambridge has taken a break from writing books no one buys and columns no one reads to launch an advertising camgaign against SUV's. It annoys her no end that Americans LIKE them and buy them in large numbers. People are spending their money in ways of which Ms. Huffington disapproves and, like busybodies everywhere, she is intent on making people do what's good them as only SHE knows it.
Listen to this economically illiterate babble:
"For a good indication of Detroit's real plans, we need look no further than this week's L.A. Auto Show. (Yes, I'm a regular on the auto show circuit.) There were as many hybrid cars on display as there were rickshaws. And in full page newspaper ads headlined 'What's Up At GM?' the auto giant bragged about having "once again shattered the record for SUV sales, topping the million mark for the second consecutive year – propelled by breakout vehicles like the one-of-a-kind Hummer H2.
"The sales deck is clearly stacked in favor of Detroit's beloved behemoths, with billions being spent on SUV advertising and ever-more tempting marketing come-ons, like GM's 'Zero, Zero, Zero' program which was introduced in December and offered no-interest financing on 13 of its SUVs for up to 60 months – very tempting in these tough times."
Imagine a company bragging about how much of its product it sells. Positively Scandalous!
It never occurs to Lisa....err....Ariana that GM is able to offer "zero, zero, zero" programs because there's enough margin in the cars that they can do so profitably. Just as it never occurs to her that if the public had any desire to purchase her beloved "hybrid" cars, Detroit would crank them out in whatever volume the public desired. That's the way markets work. Companies try to offer products people want, and people vote with their pocketbooks to determine whether or not those companies succeed.
Like Lisa gathering the eggs in her nightgown, Ariana is grossly out of place commenting on things economic. Here's another taste of her "thinking:"
"There seems to be no shortage of Americans who think that consuming 25 percent of the world's oil just isn't enough. Maybe the next model, the H3, will need to be connected to an intravenous gas-pump hose all the time. And there would still be people eager to buy it.
It doesn't occur to her that the people who buy the Hummers (a particular object of her disgust) are making rational decisions that have nothing whatever to do with "Americans" consuming anything. INDIVIDUALS buy Hummers knowing that they have poor gas mileage bacause they're willing to pay the price. That's called freedom, Ms. Huffington. That's called economic liberty. That's called the price mechanism as an allocator of resources.
But Huffington doesn't give a damned about individual liberty. And she doesn't know a thing about economics. In fact she doesn't know much about much. Beyond the aforementioned biography of Picasso and other less successful books, she seems to be one of those people who is "famous for being famous." She came into the pubic view as the wife of former Congressman Michael Huffington. Huffington ran for Senate after serving just one term in the House, lost, decided that he was gay, and divorced Ariana.
Before Michael gave her the axe, though, she began appearing on such shows as Politically Incorrect and various other TV talkfests. And like a bad penny, she keeps coming back though nobody really wants her.
Here's her latest babbling, in case you're interested.
Here's what I'd like to see. Everyone who buys an SUV ought to take a picture of his new vehicle as he drives it out of the showroom and then send Ariana a picture. It'll drive her to distraction.
Maybe it'll even be enough to drive her back to Greece.
According to John Ray, China is now blocking blogspot. If this stays the case, it is more evidence (for those of us who need it) that the PRC East (for the uninitiated, California is PRC West) still warrants considerable scrutiny and skepticism. Between its attitude toward Taiwan, its persistent violation of intellectual property rights, and its still-too-cozy relationship with such unsavory govenments as that of North Korea, there's plenty to be skeptical of.
It also demonstrates what a tin ear its leaders have - or else just how extremely arrogant they are. On-line blathering poses no serious near-term threat to the Chinese gerontocracy, and heavy-handed actions like this just arouse the ire of a class of people outside the country who would be otherwise disinclined to pay them much attention.
Thursday, January 09, 2003
"It was a tough Christmas in Libby, Montana. In late October, the town of 8,000 in extreme northwestern Montana got news that Stimson Lumber Company would close its mill; by year’s end, 300 jobs would be gone. The reason was simple but hardly new: not enough timber was allowed to be harvested from the Kootenai National Forest, which makes up 78 percent of Lincoln County where Libby is located. Plus, the price of the logs that are allowed to be harvested has been driven up by endless appeals and lawsuits by environmental groups and thus rendered uneconomic in the world marketplace. This was the second of the double barrel shot that Lincoln County’s job market absorbed: environmental opposition helped kill a world class mine that was to open with hundreds of high paying jobs....
But of course the left loves "the little guy," right? Not when he's interfering with their grand plans to control as much of our lives as possible, apparently. According to the article, many of the displaced workers were hoping to be hired by the EPA, which is hiring 200 people locally or the U.S. Forestry Service, which is hiring about a hundred. No such luck, though. Why?
"The men and women who have reported to the EPA’s local office have been turned away as unqualified; the EPA is looking, they were told, for bilingual employees, specifically those who can speak Spanish. One local quipped that the only truly qualified individual was the high school Spanish teacher and he already had a job."
This would be funny if it weren't so sickening.
The rest of the article is here
CBS = "Criticizing Bush Sleazily"
CBS ran a story on its evening news show Monday night spouting the DNC party line about the Bush tax cuts being a sop to the rich. To add a dash of credibility, they found an accountant who prattled the same class-warfare talking points the left has been pushing since before the plan was even announced.
Specifically, they discovered one Avery Neumark, who opined: "If you went to summarize this tax proposal as we see it today, the winners are the wealthy." Funny how CBS couldn't find a CPA who could tell tham how eliminating dividend taxation would benefit investors or the market as a whole. Funny too how in all their prattling about how all the tax breaks go to the "rich," none of the ace journalists at CBS found time to point out that "the rich" pay a wildly disproportionate share of the income tax burden.
Just to remind you, here's the latest breakdown:
The Top 1%: Adjusted Gross Income of more than $313,469, pays 37.42 percent of all income tax collected
Top 5%: $128,336, pays 56.47 percent
Top 10%: $92,144, pays 67.33 percent
Top 25%: $55,225, pays 84.01 percent
Top 50%: $27,682, pays 96.09 percent
Bottom 50%: less than $27,682, pays a mere 3.91 percent
But you know what's funniest of all? That the guy who they chose to provide his objective expertise - the aformentioned Mr. Neumark - turns out to be a Democratic party activist who twice made $1000 contributions to the DNC and twice make $500 contributions to ultraleft congressman Jerrold Nadler.
Given that Dan Rather, the host of the CBS Evening News, appeared at an Al Gore fundraiser in the last election, I guess this shouldn't come as a surprise.
Wednesday, January 08, 2003
The Next Big Thing
I've always thought that besides being morally bankrupt, the main problem with socialism is its awful, dreary monotony. The guiding principle of socialism is "nothing risked, nothing lost." Capitalism might be full of risk, and I realize that frightens lots of folks. But it's never dull, and more importantly, it's always future-looking. There are always plenty of people, justifiably or not, convinced that they can be part of The Next Big Thing; and it's their willingess to make big gambles on their hunches that gives capitalism its energy.
Don't look now, but the Next Big Thing is here.
Five years from now - or even sooner - there's a good chance you'll access your internet connection through the magic of radio. "Wi-Fi," also known as "802.11b", is a fast-growing standard for wireless internet that transmits data at really fast speeds - as in up to 11 million bits per second. A new version, "802.11g" is just completing the standards setting process and promises data rates up to 54Mbps - fast enough for streaming video.
There are drawbacks, most notably limited range (a few hundred feet), but the implementation is starting hot and heavy, with lots of big firms throwing money at Wi-Fi, even in the present depressed state of hi-tech world. And firms like Boingo, funded by venture capitalists have already set up hundreds of "hotspots" (in Boingo's case about 800, and have plans for thousands more.
The initial hotspots are in places like Starbucks and airports. Several hotel chains have also announced plans to install hotspots system-wide. And as with most such cutting-edge technological phenomenon there are plenty of hobbyist/technerd/early adopter types that have installed systems in their homes. The infrastructure is pretty cheap (a couple of hundred bucks) and the card that goes into your pc is less than a hundred.
Here's a link to a pretty comprehensive blog that has some nice basic info about Wi-Fi.
And here are links to a few articles that discuss the phenomenon in layman's terms. I know they're in layman's terms or I never would have understood them:
Wi-Fi's Widening World
Truckers Shift Into High Speed
The Big Boys' Mad Dash into Wi-Fi
Bush to Renominate Pickering, Owens
I swear if this keeps up I might start liking Bush almost as much as Reagan. Well, OK, he has a ways to go for that. But the guy's got cojones, that's for sure. I'll bet he's a hell of a poker player.
He's going to renominate Charles Pickering and Priscilla Owen for Apellate Court judgeships. Pickering's treatment, in particular, at the hand of Tom Daschle and his minions was nothing short of despicable.
Pickering had the head of the Mississippi NAACP speak on his behalf - but still the Democrats insisted on slandering his as a racist. With no evidence other than statements he made when he switched to the GOP in 1964 (such as saying that the "Republican party was the only hope for rescuing Mississippi from socialism"), the Democrats did what they always do when push comes to shove: brand an opponent with The Scarlet R. It seems to be the only play left in their playbook. Well, that and abortion. They threw some abortion mud at Pickering too.
Given the recent Lott fiasco, it would be incredibly easy - and understandable - for Bush to want to avoid fighting this battle again. But he once again proves that he isn't one to back down from a fight when a principle is at stake. Here that principle is that the Democrat party must not be allowed to continue its pattern of conducting character assassination campaigns against every conservative nominee for the federal judiciary. They kept Pickering's nomination bottled up in committee, refusing to bring his nomination to the Senate floor when it was widely known that he had the votes there for confirmation.
By this move, Bush says that such obstructionism will not be rewarded.
Here's the entire article, by the way. Registration for the Dallas Morning News site is required to access the link above.
WASHINGTON – President Bush renominated Texas Supreme Court Justice Priscilla Owen and Mississippi Judge Charles Pickering on Tuesday for seats on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, rekindling a dispute with Senate Democrats, who rejected the nominees last year.
Justice Owen and Judge Pickering were among 31 judicial candidates submitted on the first day of the new Congress.
While Justice Owen's defenders had vowed her name would be swiftly re-offered, Judge Pickering's future had appeared less certain.
Some had speculated that the White House would shy away from the Mississippi judge, accused by civil rights groups of being racially insensitive, so soon after the controversy over Mississippi Sen. Trent Lott's remarks on segregation. Sen. Lott, Judge Pickering's friend, recently ceded his Senate leadership post amid the furor over his comments.
Senate Democrats pledged to do whatever they could to keep Judge Pickering off the 5th Circuit, which covers Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi.
"Unfortunately, they have not learned from the Trent Lott episodes, and I am going to do everything I can to stop the Pickering nomination from going forward," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y.
Supporters of Justice Owen, whose nomination foundered on charges she was a judicial activist with an anti-consumer, anti-abortion record, predicted she'd have a different fate now that Republicans control the Senate.
"I am confident that this outstanding jurist will be approved overwhelmingly," said Texas Sen. John Cornyn, who will help his one-time Supreme Court colleague from his new seat on the Judiciary Committee.
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, also welcomed the president's action. "Her qualifications are indisputable," Ms. Hutchison said.
The Alliance for Justice, a liberal advocacy group that led the charge against the Owen and Pickering nominations, expressed dismay at the president's action.
"It is hard to believe that the administration wishes to re-fight the Pickering and Owen battles, which will revive such problematic issues for the administration as civil rights and corporate cronyism," group president Nan Aron said.
Tuesday, January 07, 2003
Oh blechhh, blechhh, blechhh and blechhh yet again.
Damian Penny's Daimnation!, a new entry to the blogroll from Canada, alerts us to some new official prayers from the Church of England concerning Iraq. Try this one on for size:
Prayer for Epiphany: For the peoples of Iraq
Lord, we pray fervently for the people of Iraq
facing the horror of a full-scale war,
and for those people who may be called upon to fight.
Help us to persuade world leaders to continue negotiations.
Help all of us: individuals, nations, governments and world leaders
to remember -
the unnecessary loss of life for millions of innocent people,
the scale of human suffering that war brings,
the right of Iraqi people to determine their own future,
the gross violations of human rights and crimes against humanity that are committed in the name of war,
nobody has total power over any country or its people but God alone.
Let us be open to God’s words in our forthcoming decisions and try not to be God ourselves.
Damian cites this as reason number 358 why he is no longer an Anglican. Personally, it makes me wish I WAS an Anglican, so I could have the satisfaction of quitting.
He's got links to this and another similarly neauseating "prayer" on his blog.
The People's Republic of California continues its long, slow descent
In 1975, I think it was, the Jehovahs Witnesses were convinced that the end was near. Thousands of them sold or gave away their earthly possessions and quit their jobs in anticipation of God's (and their) impending earthly reign. This was one of two tragic false prophesies of our time.
The second - and the one that has personally impacted my life - was that prediction about California falling into the ocean.
It's positively cruel to raise peoples' hopes like that.
PRC West (in contradistinction to the original PRC - the Peoples Republic of China - which shall hereinafter be referred to as "PRC East") has passed a statewide ban on OUTDOOR smoking within 25 feet of a playground.
"(American Lung Association of California Spokesman and noted Silly Person Paul) Knepprath said there is no known safe level of secondhand smoke. Adults smoking near playgrounds also set a bad example, he said.
'We should not expose kids to tobacco use,' he said. 'They're bombarded every day with tobacco industry advertising. ... The playground should be a place where kids can play.'
"Knepprath has three young children and said that he sees plenty of evidence of smoking on his frequent visits to swings and slides.
"Repace said that research is beginning on the effects of secondhand smoke outside. At outdoor cafes and bars where customers are allowed to smoke, he said, servers may be exposed to significant amounts.
"Another growing concern, he said, is multifamily dwellings, where smoke can waft between apartments through shafts and cracks in the walls...."
Proving that professional busybodies like Paul Knepprath must be fought at every turn irrespective of the seeming harmlessness of any particular cause they might take up. Of COURSE he has a new object of "growing concern." If he didn't, he would have to go get a job - and the job market for Chicken Littles is pretty much limited to the Democratic National Committee right now. And they're laying off.
Though I suspect Mr. Kneppath could probably qualify as an Anglican clergyman. Or perhaps he could become the sheriff of Lake County, Indiana.
Michael J. Hurd has written a perceptive piece about the psychology of the originator of the notion of the "Vast Right Wing Conspiracy," Hillary Clinton. I really like his three concluding paragraphs:
"One of the reasons people like Hillary Clinton come across as so bitter is that they have nothing to offer, and they’re smart enough to know it. For a woman like Hillary Clinton, whom I suspect craves power like you or I could never begin to imagine, it’s particularly frustrating. Her life has been one huge compromise – against feminism (by defending her sexually predatory husband); against welfare statism (by allowing her husband to sign off on welfare reform and capital gains tax cuts); and even against her youthful inclinations as a limited government/Barry Goldwater/Ayn Rand fan.
"All this compromise has been in the pursuit of one thing only: power. She wants power from the people and over the people, but there’s only one problem: the people keep demanding ideas. She’s afraid to articulate her real ideas, of course, because if she did she would end up like she did after her infamous 1994 health care debacle. So Hillary, like her supporters throughout the country, are left with a single emotion and a single policy: bitterness.
"What happens if someone like this ever gains real power?"
Monday, January 06, 2003
The Road to Buchananism
There are so many levels of irony connected with Patrick Buchanan's latest column that I hardly know where to start.
John Ray correctly points out that Buchanan's undeniably accurate recitation of facts about the Nixon administration puts the lie to the claim that the GOP has been historically deficient in putting forth programs designed to help blacks. That Buchanan would ascribe virtue to the willingness to grow and nurture such programs, though, says more about how far Buchanan has slid than it does about Nixon, the GOP, or the "neoconservatives" against whom he rails.
Buchanan is upset at the apostacy he perceives emanating from the prominent neocons who pummeled Trent Lott into submission. And on this point, I concur. Bucahan writes thusly on the subject:
"Whether Lott may have been innocent of any hate crime, or whether they might have had a moral duty to step in to stop a lynching of one of their own--even had Lott blundered--seem to be thoughts that never once intruded upon these tiny minds. Yet their collusion in ruining Lott, and their relish in the pats on the head they are receiving from the Left, confirm the suspicion. Neoconservatives are the useful idiots of the liberal establishment.
Fair enough. I've said as much on this forum - sans neocon bashing.
But how does Buchanan defend the GOP against charges of historical racial insensitivity? By citing a laundry list of paternalistic ventures of the Nixon administration. To wit: raising the civil rights enforcement budget eight-fold, doubling the budget for black colleges, creating the Office of Minority Business Enterprise, etc., etc.. There was a time when conservatives - Buchanan among them, I imagine - dismissed such stuff as the "Dime Store New Deal." Now he expects principled conservatives to use such statism as a defense against trumped-up charges of racism? Where does that road lead?
For an answer to that question, we can look to other of Buchanan's recent positions. He wants 15% taxes (at least) on all imported goods. He opposes Social Security privatization. He wants racial quotas for "ethnic catholics and christians" at Ivy League universities. And of course, he supports John McCain-style speech rationing ("campaign finance reform"). With friends like these....
So where does Buchanan's road lead? The answer lies in the title of the book by F.A. Hayek containing these words:
"It is important to be quite clear about this: the modern movement for planning is a movement against competition as such, a new flag under which all the old enemies of competition have rallied. And although all sorts of interests are now trying to reestablish privileges which the liberal era swept away, it is socialist propaganda for planning which has restored to respectability among liberal-minded people opposition to competition and which has effectively lulled the healthy suspicion which any attempt to smother competition used to arouse. What in effect unites the socialists of the Left and the Right is this common hostility to competition and their common desire to replace it by a directed economy."
The name of this book, of course, is The Road to Serfdom.
Finally, Buchanan asks: "And where were the necons when Goldwaterites and Nixonites were building the New Majority?" The answer is that they were advocating positions very similar to those Buchanan advocates now.
But at least the neocons have seen the error of their ways.
America's Dumbest Criminal Catchers
A gun originally used by John Dillinger, thought to be worth about $1 million, might be melted down if Lake County, Indiana Sheriff Roy Dominguez has his way.
"I see no sense in glorifying him or that gun . . . [the Tommy gun] was used in the commission of a felony. I would consider melting it down or find another way to properly dispose of it."
There's a German U Boat on display at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry. I think we can all agree the Nazis were nastier, even, than John Dillinger. Maybe we should melt the U Boat too.
Sunday, January 05, 2003
Castro's Inspirational Genius
Useful Idiotarianism isn’t the exclusive province of Sean Penn. No, here are some recent gems uttered by various other Hollywood cretin concerning that bastion of progressivism and enlightenment: Fidel Castro.
-Steven Spielberg, on dining and discussing the meaning of life with Castro until the wee hours of the morning: “(It) was the eight most important hours of my life.”
-Jack Nicholson, following a 1998 meeting with Castro: “He is a genius. We spoke about everything.”
-Model Naomi Campbell: “(Castro) is a source of inspiration to the world.”
-Campbell again: “I'm so nervous and flustered because I can't believe I have met him. He said that seeing us (Campbell and model Kate Moss) in person was very spiritual.”
-Filmmaker Saul Landau: "I have not seen any evidence that he is a sadistic monster or a brutal dictator....Cuban human rights violations take the form of procedural violations. They involve legal and political rights rather than economic and social rights.”
At some point shouldn’t SOMEONE stand up and point out that these vile people are giving aid and comfort to a butcher, despot and madman? Why do our celebrities-cum-“Human Rights” causemongers not only give Fidel a pass, but actively praise him?
While the American left was falling all over itself to get Marxist Soviet-sympathizer Nelson Mandela freed from a South African prison; why was it completely silent about the plight of Mario Chanes and the thousands like him who endured torture, starvation, neglect, and execution in Castro’s prisons? Chanes endured Castro’s brutality for 30 years - longer than Mandela. Have you ever heard of him? If not, ask yourself why that is.
Have you ever heard of Heriberto Mederos? Again, it is certainly understandable if you haven’t. But given his background, it might be worth asking the question: “why have I never heard about this guy?”
Mederos’ contribution to the inspiration of the world’s supermodels was as a torturer/”nurse” in Cuba’s Mazorra Psychiatry Hospital. Among his other duties, Mederos administered electric shocks to political prisoners. This is how anti-Castro activist Eugenio de Sosa Chabau describes the “procedural violations” he received at the hand of Mederos in a 2001 article in the Miami Herald:
“He applied the electroshock after soaking the electrodes in water to heighten their power. He was always very serious when he applied the electroshock on people who then kicked and writhed on the floor. He gave me 14 electroshocks, 10 in the testicles and four on the head.''
It's truly infuriating. One can usually forgive Hollywood types for their fatuous political proclamations. Their craft doesn’t exactly require a comprehensive grounding in political theory. Or logic for that matter.
But willful ignorance in the service of such grotesquely illiberal despotism is nothing short of evil. I have no clue what sort of motivations might underlie such stuff. And truth be told - I’m not sure that I really want to know.
I DO know this, though. The following few sentences from this article about Castro's use of psychiatric torture against political dissidents apply not only to the left's enfatuation with Castro's Cuba, but to countless other areas as well:
"Americans will hear nothing from Dan Rather or Peter Jennings nor see anything on "60 Minutes," "20/20," "Dateline" or any other television show about psychiatric abuse of political prisoners in Castro's Cuba, even with many surviving victims living on U.S. soil. Americans will not see a report about the book "The Politics of Psychiatry in Revolutionary Cuba" by Charles J. Brown and Armando M. Lago.
This unchecked control and manipulation of information to satisfy the agenda of a left-dominated media, far from helping the cause of freedom and democracy in Cuba, is perpetuating Castro's tyranny. It is also fostering a profound misunderstanding and division between Americans and Cuban Americans.
How many Americans know who Heriberto Mederos was and what he did? Who were his victims and why did they have to suffer?
The very compassionate Americans would most certainly care if the information is given to them and the U.S. media would make an issue of it, as they normally do with issues they want the American people to care about.
But they are not in the business of informing. They are in the business of manipulating the American people."