Friday, November 30, 2012

Big Fat Friday Free For All

What's on your mind, Bub?  Wishing you were getting that 10 dollars in spending for every 1 dollar in tax hikes deal they teased you with?  Wishing you could wring little Timmy Geithner's neck across the negotiating table?  Pissed you didn't pick up $500M in Powerball?  Well then, share with your friends!

Let it out, don't keep it in. 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

A Leopard Can't Change His Stripes

I don't know what Geithner is saying but "hang on fellows, I'm just the messenger" would seem appropriate. Anyhoo, what did I tell you? There is no way on Heaven or Earth the Democrats are going to cut spending. Not a chance.

The Dems sent their economic point man out today to present their "balanced approach". Let's see, $1.6 tril in new taxes, a $50 billion new stimulus (just this year) to be replicated over the next several years and a promise to cut spending later. Yeah right, and I promise to quit drinking and to lay off the stogies.

Even the venerable Washington Post was appalled. By golly they supported Obama's re-election precisely because of his "balanced approach" to the "fiscal cliff". Yeah right, and I promise to quit my Girls Gone Wild Emperor's Club membership and cancel my Russian credit card.

Let's get real and come to terms with the fact that the Republicans will get blamed regardless, but only in the short term. Another recession is inevitable regardless what they monkey together two days before everybody sings winter solstice songs around the Holiday Tree. But long term, and I'm talking a year, maybe two, the folks are going to turn on the Democrats. They screamed another term, we can do it, we just need more time. They pulled a Harry Reid and made Romney unacceptable to enough of the ideocracy to get another go. But there'll be hell to pay if they don't come through, and the hell of it is, that dog won't hunt. They may not know it now, they're not smart enough to be scared, but the Democrats are in deep do do. And our job is to just get out of the way.

A Shame That I Did Not Win Powerball

For those concerned, I wanted to let you know that I was not a holder of one of the two winning tickets for last night's Powerball drawing.

I think this is unfortunate, for many reasons.

The first is that all things considered, I'd be a pretty darn good rich guy.  I like cigars.  I like nice cars.  I like nice meals.  I wear classic, well-made (but not flashy or expensive) suits. I am not a profligate spender, and since I turned 35, I've done a pretty good job saving money.  Before that, I lived by the English soccer star George Best's motto "I spent half my money on women and alcohol, and the rest I wasted."  I'm also not an idiot when it comes to investing, so the money would probably be pretty well stewarded.

Next, my family is all in pretty decent shape.  Therefore, you wouldn't have to be treated to those ridiculous, syrupy stories of me putting all my nieces and nephews through college, or paying off  their parents' mortgages.  Nothing like that.  Not that I wouldn't be generous, mind you.  No sir...those nieces and nephews would see their annual Christmas gift card go from $50 to $75 in a New York minute!  Next time, maybe.

Mom and Dad are in good shape too, so no reason to siphon off any of the money for their well-being.  Though, Dad needs to cut back on the yard work....maybe I'll buy him a leaf blower.

Some of you might think, "hey CW, you live on the water--bet you'd waste a bunch of that cash on a nice new boat."  Not so fast.  Truth is, I'm a pretty bad boat handler.  In fact, the Kitten does all the pier-work in our Whaler, and she does most of the inner-tube pulling, and she does most of the transits to St. Michaels for meals.....she pretty much does all the driving.  I bet she'd buy a new boat if she won the lottery.  Not this guy.

Speaking of the Kitten, one of the wonderful things about her is she's not a jewelery or clothes-horse.  So I wouldn't waste any of the loot there.

As for travel, I'd do it right.  You'd be proud of me.  I would pay someone to travel with the Kitten and the Kittens to meet me wherever we were going.  This person would schlep bags, wait at security, look at shiny things in stores, and help them stow the bags they should have checked in the overhead compartment.  After take-off, I'd go back to coach every now and then to say hello to them, and then I'd have the hotel room all ready for them once they collected all their stuff.

Where I might get a little crazy is in buying a second house.  Probably be in Charlottesville; my "September-March" house.  I'd watch football and basketball games.  Buy myself a spot on the Board of Visitors at UVA and cause a ruckus now and then.

But alas, none of this is going to happen.  Instead, some retiree from Missoula will win $500M and buy a Winnebago to drive their grandchildren around in.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Where $200,000 = $1,000,000

Math-challenged Press Secretary
I spent a few minutes yesterday listening to the President's Press Secretary Jay Carney deliver his briefing to the assembled sheep members of the White House Press Corps.  It was mostly boilerplate stuff and largely uninteresting.  There was however, one thing that I found interesting.

The talking points we've heard for years now from the Obama Administration is how their plan to raise taxes on the "top 2%" is a tax on "millionaires and billionaires", in order for them to pay their "fair share".  I must have heard Carney use the phrase "millionaires and billionaires" three times yesterday.

Yet not once did even one member of the press corps remind Mr. Carney that the President's proposal does NOT raise taxes beginning with "millionaires and billionaires".  It begins at $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for families.  While these are both comfortable figures, and to some, may constitute being "rich"--there is no world in which $200K equals $1M.  Period. End of story.  Yet day in and day out, the President and his henchmen are allowed to get away with this incredible fudging. 

I am prepared to be termed a "millionaire" if Mr. Obama is prepared to multiply my tax refund by a factor of 5.  Seems fair, no?

I realize it is too much to hope for that the press would hold these people responsible for what they say. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Problem is the Rednecks

As you may know, by virtue of the fact that I am a Southern white male, I'm a bigoted, racist, cracker redneck. I will never get with the program because I am too stupid, too set in my ways and too resistant to education (indoctrination). What I have achieved in life has not been through my own efforts and hard work, but through the exploitation of a permanent minority underclass created by me and my kind for this very purpose. From this country's inception I have been practicing class warfare against minorities, women, homosexuals and anyone who dared challenge my privileged status. Therefore it is only just that I be ridiculed, taxed, vilified and continually slandered, with impunity, until I either die or succumb to the new political realities and accept the progressive agenda. I will made an example of so as to deter any independent thoughts of so-called liberty and freedom by others who may still cling to the antiquated idea of Constitutional government. I and my culture will be relentlessly mocked, laughed at and libeled in every media outlet be it news, entertainment or sports. I will be destroyed, so that others may be free.

Now before you go off on me about how this is just a paranoid, self-pitying diatribe with no basis in reality, I beg you to look at the evidence. White males in general and Southern white males specifically are under attack. We are the new underclass. But there's a more subtle and insidious purpose here. Let me explain so bear with me.

Let's head North, and I mean really North, to Canada. In the seventies a guy named Rene Levesque started getting a lot of attention calling for Quebec, through a referendum, to leave Canada and form its own country. Quebec is about 80-90% French speaking with their own unique culture as opposed to the rest of Canada which is about 90% English speaking (some provinces more some less). As you might imagine this was a source of lots of consternation but many felt that the French-Canadians (or is it  Canadiens?) had a point so what the heck, let them go. Now something like this can take decades to run it's course with fits and starts but in 1990 something happened, there was a Time Magazine cover:

Separatism, Is Canada Coming Apart?

The gist of the article was yes indeed, Quebec could go its on way but what then happens to Canada? Time's answer was they would eventually be absorbed by the United States of course. WELL! That didn't go over too good in Canuckland. The issue was no longer independence for a culturally different and frankly pain-in-the-ass provence but the very survival of Canada. And one thing every Canadian can agree on is they want no part of the U.S. So, that was the end of that and the separatist movement in Quebec is now a back-burner issue. nevermind that the whole Time story was completely fabricated BS planted by the English speaking Canadian establishment. It served it's purpose and if you want to get something passed in Canada to this very day all you need do is position the issue as Canadian vs. American and shazam, you got yourself a winner.

And so it goes with American politics. Sometimes we are defined by what we are not rather than what we are. In America today there's a lot to be gained by associating conservatism to (supposed) Southern intolerance and backwardness. The South has always been America's whipping boy. Some of the most outrageously ignorant bullshit is spouted from the mouths of people who have never been anywhere close to the South. I myself, as obviously sophisticated and erudite as I may be, have often times been dismissed as a loutish, redneck hick by Northerners only marginally as well educated and worldly as yours truly. But there's a movement afoot to instigate an us against them mentality that transcends issues and is more tribalism than politics. If progressives are successful and can equate conservatism to a Southern racist ideology rooted in bigotry and backwardness long since dead, then it's over. Nobody wants to be called a redneck, unless you already are a redneck.    

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanks for Your Interest, Now Please Go Away

Rick Santorum is open to a 2016 run. Great!  Because what the Republican Party needs right now as it bleeds support from women is an intolerant scold on social issues

Sunday, November 25, 2012

WaPost Shills for Obama on Income Inequality

This is a remarkable article, written  by the Washington Post "White House economics reporter."  It could not have been more favorably written by Mr. Obama's own team.  In it, the "reporter" (and yes, I use those quotes to separate him in this instance from those who at least feign reporting vice advocacy) takes us on Barack Obama's political journey with respect to that demon "income inequality".  You remember, Barack Obama, right?  The man less concerned with the debt and deficit than in chasing his elusive vision of "fairness"?  The man who won't work with Republicans on revenue positive closures of loopholes and credits that would assuredly bring in more revenue (though revenue is earned, taxes are confiscated), focusing instead on making the world's most progressive tax system even more progressive, so that "the rich" pay more of their "fair share"?  The man who told a debate moderator during the 2008 race that even though two successive Presidents had lowered the capital gains rate AND RAISED MORE REVENUE from it, he would consider raising it as an issue of "fairness"?  Yes.  That Barack Obama.

In this article, the reporter does what most mainstream media reporters does.  He simply states that income inequality is a bad thing, without spending even a single sentence in explanation for WHY it is a bad thing.  There are a few lame attempts.  Here's one:  "As Obama did in legislative fights during his first term, he also will be striving to reduce a three-decades-long wave of rising income inequality that has meant that fewer Americans have prospered while more struggle to get by."  Clearly, by reading this, one would surmise that there was a cause and effect relationship between income inequality and "fewer" Americans prospering.  Well--I'm waiting....what is it.  Worse yet, his statement is seriously open to interpretation.  If by prospering and struggling to get by, we consider the lot of the bottom of the economic scale, the statement is simply incorrect as this Heritage paper does a good job of describing. 

Here's another example of the laziness--or perhaps the downright bias--of the reporter.  "Among 35 of the world’s most developed countries, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, only a handful of national tax systems do less than the U.S. code to reduce income inequality."  While this may be true (again though, I have no opinion on whether we should focus on income inequality until I can be convinced that there is something wrong with it, or at least that we can identify WHY and HOW it is wrong, and why something that has ALWAYS existed to some degree is suddenly so determinative), the same report tells us that the US tax code is THE MOST PROGRESSIVE code among the same countries.  Read this unusually well written column from The Atlantic that gives convincing evidence of this.  Here's a wonderful line from the piece, one by which  I imagine many Americans (and most Democrats) would be surprised: "Why, according to the OECD, is the US system so progressive? Not because the rich face unusually high average tax rates, but because middle-income US households face unusually low tax rates--an important point which de Rugy mentions and Chait ignores."

So what we have in this piece is a "reporter" who obviously believes income inequality to be the primary bugaboo in our system, identifying the President's acceptance of the reporter's primary bugaboo as a positive development within a hagiography of the President.  Nowhere does the reporter attempt to investigate the studies that either 1) challenge the degree of "income inequality" others cite 2) challenge the notion of inequality as relevant measure or 3) assign policy blame to the level of inequality that does in fact, exist--specifically, the transfer of wealth from young to old.  None of this is covered. 

We will hear about this non-stop for the next four years.  Mr. Obama and his friends in Congress are not interested in righting our economic ship; they are interested in a vision of "fairness" in which yes--the rich get poorer....but then so do the poor.  Income inequality is a measure of envy, not of fairness.

The Hammer's College Football Review: Week 13

Does the ACC suck or what? We had Mary-Land bolt on us this week for the Big Ten (why they would even want them is beyond me), and adding insult to injury our best can't even beat other conference's middling teams. Pacifically the S.E.C.

10-1 Flawda State took on instate rival Florida at home, on Bobby Bowden Field in Doak Campbell Stadium before a sellout crowd of 85,000 screaming rednecks, and gave up 24 points in the 4th. quarter. How does a quality team just fold up like that? At home? In front of all that hot, ditzy, Seminole coed nevermind (lost my train of thought).  Now admittedly the Gators are a damn fine football team, and two years from now they'd be in the playoff for the big prize, but still FSU was embarrassing in the fourth quarter.

Then we had Clemson at home against their hated foe the South Carolina Gamecocks coached by Mr. Personality himself, Steve Spurrier. Clemson led 14-10 at halftime but decided to sit out the second half scoring only three points to S.C.'s 17. And that's with the Cocks starting a second string quarterback and their hoss in the backfield Marcus Lattimore out with injury. Clemson just couldn't stop them on third down and Carolina played brilliant ball control offense getting 50+ snaps in the second half compared to Clemson's 19. It's hard to score if you ain't got the ball.

In other ACC action Georgia owned Georgia Tech, no big surprise there. UVA played Va. Tech tough but couldn't get it done. And just to illustrate how Commissioner Swofford has screwed this league up, this was rivalry week right? Well not so much in the rest of the ACC. NCSU played Boston College. UNC played Maryland. Wake Forest played Vanderbilt and Duke played Miami. Yeah buddy, when I think NC State and our biggest rival I always think Boston College. I'm sure Carolina, Duke and Wake are thinking the same thing. Jaysus, if somebody has to have a heart attack this week let it be somebody like Swofford!

So, now that I've bitched about the ACC let's move on to the national picture. Alabama mopped the floor with Auburn, scoring on their first seven possessions. Two years ago Auburn was top of the heap, now they couldn't play dead in a cowboy movie. They might would even suck in our, maybe. Oregon which was riding high before losing to Stanford last week took it to in-state rival Oregon State all day long; they licked that Beaver cross-eyed. But guess who's playing in the PAC 12 championship game? Stanford and UCLA. And yes they just played yesterday with the Bruins losing 35-17 in Pasadena. Ohio State beat a good Michigan squad in the shoe finishing 12-0. Now they can sit back, pop open a sudweiser and watch Alabama/ Notre Dame for the big enchilada.

The Hammer's Heisman watch has the Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel as the strong favorite. He's a redshirt freshman and no freshman has ever won but his closest competition is Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o. To begin with a defensive player has only ever won one Heisman in the history of the award, and furthermore nobody can pronounce Mr. Te'o name properly. The K-State QB is great but they lost and Ohio State's QB is excellent but he's damaged goods. There are some good players out there but nobody sticks out like Manziel, and the media loves this guy. I suppose beating 'Bama does have its rewards.

So, there you go. Not much shaking the next few weeks. Ah we have the odd game (Army/Navy...yawn) but not much so I may not crank it up again until the bowls. I'm sure you're heartbroken. So, I won't let the door hit me where the good Lord split me. C-ya, wouldn't want to be ya.

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Day After

The Kitten will likely not read this post, as she is uninterested in my scribblings here unless they reveal dark family secrets or unauthorized photos of The Kittens.  So she will not get to read the high praise I bestow upon her here for a truly magnificent Thanksgiving, having instead to content herself with my tryptophan-laced mutterings from the kitchen couch last night before slouching off to bed at 9PM.  The house was beautiful, the food was tasty, and the sanctity of the holiday was well-maintained.  We made a deal that she would wash the delicate stuff (china, stemware, etc) and I would do the more hearty stuff--but I insisted that I would not undertake my responsibilities until this morning.  For any of you who know me well, you know the words "The meal's not over 'til the dishes are done" escape my mouth only about three hundred days a you know I was laid low by yesterday's bounty.  She put a movie in the DVD player and washed dishes, while I was snuggled in bed.

We had--like many of you I am sure--a ridiculous bounty.  I was given the task of preparing the turkey, and the reviews indicated that I got it right.  In addition, we had The Kitten's famous mashed potatoes (really--the best MP I've ever eaten--perhaps made so by the work I put in to wash, peel and mash), two kinds of stuffing, an amazing oyster casserole, a sweet potato dish (which I avoid--don't like sweet potatoes), a stuffing like creation of chestnuts, mushrooms and celery, a wonderful salad, pumpkin bread, dinner rolls--topped off with a very tasty gravy.  Afterward there were four different pies offered (a lemon meringue, a traditional pumpkin, and two pimped-out pumpkin pies), and I stayed with the traditional (natch).

We were a group of eleven; we four, the Kitten's aunt and uncle, their daughter and husband plus two kids, and the Kitten's mother.  It was a jolly occasion, save for the morose discussion among the older folks (plus me) of the future of the country in the age of Obama.  We were however, charitable in the spirit of the day.

I offered the following pre-meal blessing, which I think is verbatim.  "Lord, we thank you for this day... this feast... this family... and this Earth.  We are grateful for the blessings you provide and we enjoy.  We are mindful that there are those tonight who are lonely....sick....cold....hungry.  We ask that you be with them, as you are with us.  Amen."  Short and sweet, the way I like 'em. 

I am particularly glad that today is the day after Thanksgiving.  Again--some of you know that I am particularly enthusiastic about the Christmas season.  In college, Christmas music began on the day after Halloween for me.  Well, the commissars here at Ferry Bridge Farm do not allow Christmas music until Thanksgiving is in the can, and they react with some alacrity when I violate this prohibition.  I've been listening to Christmas music in the car, as a solitary act of resistance.  Yesterday, during one of my trips to the store to buy stuff we should have bought the day before, I did buy a Christmas Wreath to hang on the door to the ManCave.  I hung it proudly and defied the Screws to take it down.  They demurred.

My trumpet sits in its case beside me in the Cave, badly in need of a little holiday maintenance before I begin my annual Christmas Carol jamboree.  By the Big Day, I'll actually be a passable bugler again.  In the meantime, it is well that my rehearsals are here in the hermetically sealed ManCave.

There will be no shopping today for me, nor was there any last night.  To do so is the height of ridiculosity.   I know that I have family members who indulge in this execrable practice, and though I love them dearly, I fear for their stability.  God (and Al Gore) invented the internet to make Christmas shopping efficient and cheap.

I am all liquored up to go and buy (tomorrow, that is) some of those battery-operated window candles that work on a timer.  If any of you have experience with them, please let me know.  I think they'll look good as one turns the corner and approaches our house, what with all the windows we have now, post-renovation.

I thought yesterday of the Thanksgivings spent at sea or on duty while I was in the Navy.  I thought of those who stand that watch now.  It is never as good as it is when one is surrounded by loved ones--but here's a little isn't too bad to be surrounded by shipmates.  You make do, you tell stories about the funny stuff that happens around your family table, and the cooks go out of their way to make sure you get a great turkey dinner.

I hear a number of thunderous reports from the fields around me; I don't rightly know what season it is here in Maryland, but I suppose I ought to get my act together and figure it out. The Kitten's brother is coming to visit next week for some deer hunting, so I may tag along with him at least one day.  I still hope to receive a much coveted invitation to join Mudge on one of his Eastern Shore properties (the man really is a rural slum lord) in the weeks to come.  Mudge has lots of pictures of deer on his properties, but after three trips to  "my stand", I have yet to see one.  I have this vision of Mudge sitting around the barrel with his Eastern Shore of Virginia buddies cracking wise about the "slicker" they put up in the "deer don't go there" stand.  Be aware friends, it is within him to do so.

Enough of this.  I must to the house for another cup of coffee.  I wish all of you a great Friday and start of the Christmas Carol Season.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

CW on Bloggingheads!

For those with an hour to kill, here's my recent installment of Bloggingheads TV in which I speak with Dr. Robert Farley of the University of Kentucky about the election and things naval.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Looking For A Jerk of the Week? Found One!

This of course is John Swofford the commissioner of the Atlantic Coast Conference and graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (figures). Swofford has been on a quest to turn arguably the best basketball league in the country (year in and year out) into a football league, because presumably that's where the big bucks are. However, all he seems to have accomplished is talking some of the nations best football programs into joining the league and then dragging said programs down to ACC levels of mediocrity. Florida State, Virginia Tech, Miami and Georgia Tech all went from playing college football at the highest level with many national championships among them, to also rans in the league and nation. And he's not done yet.

What was basically a Southern basketball league has turned into the Big East with the addition of Boston College, Pitt and probably UConn real soon. And what the hell is up with Notre Dame? I have nothing against expansion, but the character of the league must be maintained. I fail to see what bringing in a bunch of New England teams will accomplish. BC brings nothing to the table and neither will Pitt. And besides, I don't want to be sitting beside a bunch of Yankee bastards when I'm trying to enjoy a sporting event. They're losers and they'll eventually want everybody to get a trophy.

Now we've lost one of the original members, Maryland. I don't know what to say, this is nuts. This great league is being diminished and diluted by this ass-clown (and the bankers). Here's what the old left-handed one had to say... ”I think it’s a sad day.  You know, I played in the first ACC tournament when I was playing at Duke and I’ve always loved the ACC.  I coached in it for 17 years, did announcing in it for two years.  It’s a great league. … I think it’s a terrible decision [to move].  You tell me one thing that’s good about it.  Besides money, what’s one thing? … I’m an old timer.  I’m 80 years old.  College athletics used to be for the students, not for the business people.” Lefty Driesell: 
My thoughts exactly.

Cry Havoc, Let Slip the Dogs of War

This is an immoderate post.  It will not go down in history as the most erudite thing I've written, but I'm not terribly interested in erudition this morning.  My Irish is up, and I have something to say.  I realize that what I will write has already been eloquently stated by The Hammer, but I feel the need to associate myself with his general approach.

It is time for Messrs Boehner and McConnell to pull up the drawbridge behind them and stop negotiating with the President.  Marc Thiessen's op-ed in the WaPost yesterday nicely frames the issue:  "Americans had a choice this November, and they voted for bigger government. Rather than shielding voters from the consequences of their decisions, let them pay for it."

If you think this sounds churlish and vindictive, I'm sorry.  Each of us with children understands the concept of actions and consequences.   Collectively, America took an action on November 6th, in effect repudiating fiscal discipline, debt reduction, and the free market in favor of bigger government, more spending, and an increasingly active state.  Republican leaders should now let the consequences of that action take over.

Yes, taxes on the "rich" will go up; but so will taxes on everyone else, and many who now pay no taxes will find themselves back on the taxpaying rolls.  Yes, spending on domestic programs will be cut, including ones that are dear to the hearts of conservatives and liberals alike.  And yes, defense spending will take a big cut, which will result in a weaker military, federal and private sector layoffs, and a continuing decline of the US as a world power.

Perhaps the economy will slip back into recession.  Perhaps unemployment will rise. Worse things have happened.  We will survive.

But our tax system will be "fairer" with the rich paying more of "their share".  We will cut "wasteful" defense spending and spending on other "wasteful social programs". 

We will have voted to federalize 1/6th of our economy in the vainglorious pursuit of "healthcare reform".

We will, in effect, hit bottom--or near bottom--the event I believe will be necessary to create the conditions for real political change.  America returned to office a failed President, because it has ceased to know what failure is.  And so, we probably have to fail.

We cannot continue on the path we are now. 

Reset the board, John and Mitch.  Step back, let the machine do what it is going to do, let a new "normal" be established, and then step back in and work to shape the result. 

To borrow an unfortunate phrase from my Navy days, "this turd cannot be polished any shinier".

Sunday, November 18, 2012

College Football Review Week 12: BCS Gets Stood on its Head

Wow! What a difference a day makes. The mighty Crimson Tide of Alabama went down in an upset last week and lo and behold both one and two in the all important (at least for now) BCS rankings bite the dust this week. As you all know dear readers, in the beauty contest that is the current system a team may survive an early loss but rarely a late one. And the powers that be would much prefer traditional national powers Alabama and Notre Dame as opposed to Kansas State and Oregon playing for the big'un. So not many tears are being shed by the money guys.

I'm not all that surprised Oregon lost to Stanford. The Cardinal has a history of upsets and they're a pretty good football team. With 'Bama's loss Oregon must be feeling the pressure and they may have been looking ahead to next week's game with Oregon State, which of course is their big rival and also a pretty good football team (ranked 14th. or 15th.). So from a psychological perspective this was a dangerous game for the Ducks. And how many times have we seen this kind of thing?

And I'm not all that shocked Kansas State lost to Baylor either. Their Heisman candidate Colin Klein has been battling an undisclosed injury (whatever the hell that's about, what happened his dick fall off?) since their win over Ok. State. I've been expecting him to sit out a game or two, but he didn't. Regardless the guy hasn't been 100% for a while and he threw three picks yesterday. Plus Baylor's defensive coordinator held the same job at K-St., so he know that offense. Waco hasn't seen this much excitement since Janet Reno incinerated 75 men, women and children for watching too much Jimmy Swaggart.  

In other action Oklahoma and West Virginia had a shoot-out with the Sooners winning 50-49. I don't like either one of these teams, they're all hat and no cattle.
Some dude named Montel Harris for Temple ran up 351 rushing yards against Army and I would guess that's the most they've given up since Thomas Jackson's performance at Manassas Junction some years back. By the way, to my knowledge Jackson never sodomized anybody. I just thought I should mention that.
Clemson ran up 754 yards of total offense in Death Valley against some donkey team which shall remain nameless.
And after a mediocre Georgia Tech squad hung 68 points on those cheating, semi-literate mercenaries in Chapel Hill last week (, the best the University of Virginia could muster Thursday night was a lousy 13 points, AT HOME, against the Tar Heels. Oh but they're a young team. That makes it all better.

Oh yeah, let's say a word about Ohio State. Of course they're on double not so secret probation so they're off everybody's radar, but Urban Meyer has one hell of a football team. They're 11-0 and have been quietly kicking ass. Look for these guys next year. And also look for Meyer to go bi-polar schizoid after a few seasons and end up at Slippery Rock.      

Well that's it sports fans, next week is rivalry week. South Carolina at Clemson, Ga. Tech at Georgia,  Florida at Flawda St. and Virginia at VPI. And of course Alabama/Auburn and Notre Dame/USC.
C-ya, wouldn't wanna be ya.  

Friday, November 16, 2012

Dispatch #2 From Hawaii

I sit, as is my custom, in the hermetically sealed comfort of the United Club here in Honolulu, a few gates down from there my flight will leave in just over five hours.  My youthful associate Tim decided to part company after our last meeting today and head to the beach to get a little surfing in.  I remain somewhat under the weather, and so decamped to the airport where I sit in relative comfort, considering all that has happened this week while I spent most of it in bed or in meetings.

This particular lounge is less "clubby" than most, with the furniture taking a Polynesian pose like much of everything else in here in our 50th State.  There are no big leather seats in which to ponder the universe, only these rattan-ish things that are passably comfortable, but now substitute for a nice club chair.

Additionally, the trail mix is sub par.  Mostly Goldfish.  There is a Gordon Biersch somewhere in this airport, and I will fill my maul there before getting on the plane. 

It is somewhat ironic that in a week in which I was most-ill prepared to speak publicly--what with my throat on fire and all--I had to talk more than I have in a long time.  Lots of meetings, lots of presentations, lots of Q and A....I think this was some kind of cosmic payback for my soft life.  I look forward to arriving back in Easton tomorrow, spending a little time with the Kittens, and then taking to bed as soon as I can do so without bringing disrepute upon myself.

Thanksgiving has snuck up on me.  It was only yesterday that I realized Thanksgiving is next week--rather than the week after--and the folks at the hotel wished me a "happy holidays" as I checked out.  I was glad to hear it.  I hope I can find a radio station in the drive home from the airport tomorrow that is playing Christmas music....maybe satellite has started already.  The arrival of the holidays is helping to cut through the stench of this week (and last). 

Because of the location of this airport (in the middle of the Pacific) , it appears that it does almost no business during the day, but is heavily trafficked in the morning and the evening.   I arrived here at around 1545 and it was ghostly--but now it is beginning to fill up a bit (as I write, it is nearly 1700 Hawaii time). 

Democrats and Democratic politics are BIG out here.  I don't really know why.  Every now and then a Republican slips by, but it isn't often.  Apparently a Republican won the mayoral race in Honolulu.  It was big news.

I would dearly like to take a little nap here in the lounge, and I'm quite sure I could if I put my mind to it.  But I would do so only at the cost of some sleep time while on the plane--and that is something I have no wish to do.  The plane is a 2-3-2 across seating configuration, and I am in a rightside aisle seat.  I hope the person sitting next to me is a tiny little human with a bladder encompassing half their body mass.

I once wrote of my "be-tracksuited" corpulence while traveling, a line that got a few emails of congratulation.  I am wearing said tracksuit (pants), shiny Addidas if you will--but I am far less corpulent than when I wore them last on a long trip. My traveling rig is somewhat deshabille, what with the track pants, a white T-shirt, UVA ball cap and blue-blazer with white tennis shoes.  Wearing the blazer keeps it from having to be packed, and the multiplicity of pockets do come in handy working one's way through security. 

Well folks--I think I'll find a nice movie on Netflix and zone out for a while.  I don't imagine I'll be back to the blog until Sunday, so in the meantime, be well.  And thanks to the other bloggers for carrying the load!

Let's Try a Little Darwinism

I read an article last week on JWR and the author made the argument that hey, we're going off the financial cliff one way or the other so we may as well get out of the way. He advised Republicans to do as Obama did so many times as a legislator, just vote present. He said just like the addict or alcoholic, sometimes you have to let them hit rock bottom before they see the error of their ways. And plus, if we try to participate and actually affect policy, with the help of the press we'll just get blamed when things eventually and inevitably go belly up. There's a lot of truth there.

I initially thought this unwise advise. I've never been a big proponent of taking my toys and going home because that's exactly what I want the other side to do. But the American people (at least half) voted for ever bigger government. Half thought Obama was not the cause of our economic mess, they still blamed George Bush. California voted to raise taxes on itself based on a promise from Jerry Brown that this would absolutely positively be the last time oh please please please, just one more time! Clearly our view is not popular.

So what's the problem, are folks just stupid or what? Well the answer is yes they are stupid, and ignorant, and demanding and all kinds of unpleasant things. But what they aren't is inconvenienced. So far they haven't been made to pay for the consequences of their actions. The checks aren't bouncing.

Therefore I say what I said ten days ago in a fit of rage, but this time a little more thoughtfully. Let's just get out of the way. Let the Democrats run the economy. If they want tax hikes don't stand in their way, after all, half voted for Obama. If they want to increase social spending, fine. If they want a second stimulus (900 billion wasn't nearly enough!) then let 'em have at it. But let the American people know that although we don't agree we will not be obstructionists.  However, we will accept no blame for the outcome because that's what elections are for. And as painful as I'm sure it will be, just keep in mind your greatest asset isn't your house or 401K, your greatest asset is you and your loved ones, and the cream always rises to the top. The producers will survive, the dependents for the most part won't. But the ones that do will get the education of a lifetime and won't be voting for an Obama anytime soon.

Suzy Q=Cinnamon Babka

Union greed has sadly brought Hostess Brands to its knees today.  While we're hearing much about the demise of the Twinkie, the greatest treat Hostess offered us was the fabulous Suzy Q.
On those rare occasions as a youth when Mom packed my lunch instead of giving me lunch money, there was no greater treat to discover alongside my PB&J than a Suzy Q.   A Suzy Q meant love.  And it takes a back seat to no Twinkie! 


Heaping More Honor on the Jackson Family Name

This story has 1000 degrees of sheer awesomeness.   Jesse Jackson Jr. is the Illinois Congressman who is rapidly becoming the most shameful Jesse Jackson in the family.  He was hospitalized in the spring for depression and bipolar disorder, and has been absent from the House since that time.  That did not stop him from handily winning reelection to his House seat.  (And really, why would it?  To suggest he shouldn't have run, even though he's clearly incapable of showing up for the job, would be raaaaacist).  

Since his hospitalization, he has come under scrutiny for using $20,000 of campaign funds to renovate his house.   There are also questions regarding the source of funds for a $42,000 Rolex the married Jackson purchased for his girlfriend.

But we're not done!  Jackson is now saying he's willing to give up his Congressional long as he receives disability pay.   That pay will be (choke back sob) his only income if he gives up the seat.   No idea why he couldn't get another job (unless a prospective employer might be bothered by his mental disorders, financial chicanery or possible eight-month absences from the job). 

I'd love to be a fly on the wall in the room when the decision makers mull over his disability pay request. 

Big Fat Friday Free for All

A victim of Thanksgiving overindulgence

What's on your mind, people?  Getting ready to overindulge yourselves next week?  Having trouble understanding all the fuss over the 'gifts' comment?   Ecstatic the NBA season is underway?   Let it out! 

Israel Under Siege

Hamas decided to begin its bombardment again; Israel took out their military commander and then some.  If you find yourself with admiration for Israel, what it represents and who it pisses off, join me in sending pizza to Israeli soldiers. I do it every time things heat up over there, just doin' my part.

Dispatch From Hawaii

I have been, lo these past five days, residing in a hotel in downtown Honolulu while I do some work for a valued client.  It is a trip that I had intended to make a few weeks ago, but Superstorm Sandy got in the way.  I arrived here Sunday evening, and I fly out tomorrow (Friday) night.

As I prepared for the trip, folks would wink and nudge at me, convinced that a "business" trip to Hawaii could not possibly be mostly or all business, and that a fellow like me would necessarily find his way into some off-hours fun.  They could not have been more wrong.  As I sat in the airport last Sunday, I began to feel the tell-tale signs of a little scratch in the back of the throat.  By the time I landed in Hawaii, I knew I had a cold.  By Monday morning, I was full-bore into the worst sinus infection of my life.  I've spent the last four days slogging through daylight hours with a pounding head and a throat on fire, before heading to bed at somewhere between 4 and 5 PM for 13 hours of sleep in two hour increments.  It seems that was about as much sleep as I could get before I had to roll over and find some new position from which oozy stuff could find its way down from my sinuses. 

It is now Thursday night, and I am finally feeling human.  And so, I give you this brief dispatch.

1.  Hawaii has a bit of a third world feel to it, or at least this part of Hawaii does.  There are pockets of staggering wealth and beauty, interspersed with serious poverty.  In fact, it appears that Honolulu has no planning/zoning commission to speak of.  Great architectural marvels reside next to extensive parking lot/bar zones.  Car lots dot the Nimitz highway along the water.  Sorta strange.

2.  As I walked through the Mall adjoining my hotel tonight, I kept walking past stores replete with extensive collections of winter clothing.  I couldn't figure it out.  Ain't no cold weather here.  But then.....I remembered...there's LOTS of cold weather in Japan.  And it appears that Hawaii is just about the most favorite place for Japanese folks to vacation.  Everything in my hotel is in English and Japanese.  Folks that look like me are very much in the minority.  Hence, the winter clothes.

3.  Hawaii is really, really far away from the East Coast.  Ten and a half hours from Newark.  If I flew in the other direction from Newark for ten and a half hours, I think I'd be somewhere in Turkey.  That's a long way away.

4.  I have a little chip on my shoulder about this place.  It has a lot to do with it having been Barack Obama's home.  It also has to do with how overwhelmingly this place votes for him.  I know, not a good reason to not like a place, but good enough for me.

5.  I made use of a "Doc in a Box" operation the other day to treat my ague.  I started to avail myself of the splendors of the military retirement health care system, the one I spent 21 years qualifying for, but then decided to use the convenient Urgent Care facility down the street rather than deal with the bureaucracy of the Tricare system and getting care "out of area".  For $164 I was seen by a wonderful old (Japanese) physician who spent time with me, asked me lots of questions, diagnosed my condition and handed me meds.  It put me in the mind of how fee for service medicine isn't such a bad idea, with insurance used for mostly the big stuff.  Perhaps we'll get these options out of healthcare reform, someday.

6.  I will be flying the "red-eye" tomorrow night.  Generally, this is a good experience, as I am a good sleeper on planes.  Last time I did this however, flying back from California, I was surrounded by a legion of teenaged Washington-bound school trip tourists whose hormones did not allow them to shut up throughout the trip. 

Ok, that's enough for now.  Carry on.

Their Man Safely Re-Elected, WaPost Editors Discover Entitlement Reform Necessity

This is rich.  Our friends at the Washington Post--their man safely ensconced in the White House for four more years, claiming a mandate to raise taxes--have finally discovered the need for entitlement reform.  Just in time.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My Goodness, Does the Press Like to Cover Itself!

How about this fawning profile of the new boss at the Washington Post?  It occurs to me that the story is written for exactly two kinds of reader--the first is other members of the Press, and the second is cranks like me who write about it.  Really, no one else gives a damn who the editor of the Washington Post is.

Ponnuru Sees The Problem with the GOP

Ramesh Ponnuru diagnoses the GOP's problems as well as anyone here.  Worth reading.

Press Corps Chuckles at Headline

Politico's lead story today:

Hard questions await Obama at news conference

They certainly do await him.  But does anyone think they'll actually be ASKED of him?  

For Crying Out Loud

Hillary, in desperate need of a visit to the hairdresser.
The Buffalo News, for reasons unfathomable unless they were desperate to not talk about the Bills, has made a 2016 presidential endorsement.  Their love letter to Hillary is here.

A quick check of the calendar reveals it is November 14, 2012.   This is probably an early omen that if she runs, we can expect glowing press coverage similar to O's in '08.  

Monday, November 12, 2012

Opportunity Knocks; Will the Old Dominion Answer?

The 2013 race for governor of Virginia will take center stage in the coming months as the press grasps for political news post-Presidential election (and because the press, with a hands-off policy regarding the Obama administration, has nothing else to cover).    The eternal tool Terry McAuliffe will almost certainly be the Democrats' nomineee. 

So the GOP has a real opportunity here.   In one corner for the nomination, we have Lt Gov Bill Bolling, a common-sense, practical Republican with a mild & pleasant demeanor.    In the other corner we have Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, a Tea Party firebrand who has opted to spend his time as attorney general advising state colleges and universities they lack the legal authority to protect gay employees from discrimination, fighting UVA over a climate change study, and passing out lapel pins to his staff with a doctored state seal, covering the bare breast of the Roman goddess to make it 'family friendly.'  The odds of Cuccinelli uttering an Akin-esque comment, whether it relate to abortion, gay rights or illegals are approximately 80%, and the odds of him fulfilling the worst caricature, the worst stereotype of a national Republican are 100%.

So here we stand.  A golden opportunity to reinforce a negative image of the Republican Party, or an opportunity to give people a second look at the party.  Remember, this isn't a midterm where there's lots of other races to cover--many eyes will be on this race.  I'm not terribly confident things will go the right way.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Hammer's College Football Review: Week 11

I have to tell you, after this week I'm not really into reviewing college football or anything else. I can't eat, I'm drinking too much, not doing my homework with the wife (and I ain't talking math), it's just been a crappy week. Like everybody else I was watching the tube Tuesday night and it wasn't looking good, so I just changed the channel to watch something else. But then they broke in to report what in my heart of hearts I already knew, Justin Bieber had just broken up with Selena Gomez. People Magazine had just confirmed it! My God, I was apoplectic. I couldn't watch another second of Housewives of New York. I took a pill and went straight to bed.

But life goes on so let's get started. Above is a photo at last night's Auburn/Georgia game in which the Tigers lost 38 zip. You know how it is, some teams you just like, others not so much. I'm not really an Auburn fan but I feel their pain. And boy they are painful to watch.

Speaking of losers, Tennessee, which by the way owned NC State first game of the year, lost to the Missouri Tigers in 4 overtimes. Mizzou was down 2 td's at halftime and tied the game with seconds to go. In the 4th OT, Tenn had the ball  4th and 3 on the Missouri 18 yd. line and elected to go for it. WRONG! The Tigers took over, kicked a field goal, game over.  UVA grad, lawyer and Volunteer Coach Derek Dooley (son of Vince, nephew of Bill...I feel like I'm talking about a Crusader) was on the hot seat prior to the game. Look for him at Edinboro College next year.

But the big news was the mighty Alabama Crimson Tide getting their asses handed to them by Texas A&M. The Aggies freshman quarterback looked like Fran Tarkenton and frustrated the vaunted Bama defense repeatedly. But in my view the game was lost in the trenches. A&M controlled the line of scrimmage all day. The Tide had first down goal to go and couldn't get it in (sorta like me when I drink vodka). Tough loss, goodbye national championship, hello Meineke Car Care Bowl.

Texas Tech had a double overtime win over KU and that's no biggie, but Red Raiders coach Tommy Tuberville got pissed and slapped hell out of an assistant coach. Not WWF slap but he did knock his hat and headset sideways. Not too cool brotherman. Coach is going get some constructive criticism for this.

Louisville lost convincingly to Syracuse but nobody really thought these guys were all that anyway, good team but come on. UVA looked good against Miami and it was an exciting game to watch. Coach Mike  London came out dressed in military fatigues in honor of our veterans, which was a nice touch. I'm sure they were Army fatigues as Marine fatigues have the zipper in the back. State beat Wake (as if you give a shit), Ga. Tech had a shootout win over The Baby Blues 68-50 and Southern Miss is 0-10 (I guess they miss Larry Fedora).

Well, it's shaping up as Oregon vs. either Kansas State or Notre Dame for the big one. Everybody is saying Kansas State but the Irish ring the cash register so I ain't so sure. Regardless, the Quack Attack will be tough to beat. So, as the famous DJ Charlie Tuna use to say "Stay Tuna", and have a better week than last.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Petraeus Affair

I like a good conspiracy as much as the next guy...but I don't think the conspiracy theories going around about the Petraeus Affair are on the mark.  I don't think this has anything to do with the Benghazi hearings, and I don't think that there was some conspiracy to hold this news out until after the election.

Still, something simply doesn't add up here.

Let's face it; both Petraeus and his inamorata were married; neither had any real interest in the story becoming public.

If what we hear is true, and the FBI stumbled across this in an investigation of the email habits of Petraeus' sweetie, it still seems to me that this could have been handled quietly and without a firing.

Why couldn't the FBI do a short investigation to determine if there were any national security implications?  If there weren't, then why couldn't Petraeus and Mueller (FBI) go to the President, lay out the story, and let the President make the decision.

Instead, Petraeus offered his resignation.  Even the Chair of the Senate Committee on Intelligence (the great feminist Diane Feinstein) said that an affair wasn't enough to resign over.

There's something else here--either something very salacious, or there was some kind of national security link.

Random Rants with 20/20 Hindsight

Ok we just lost an important come? After hearing the postmortems from the pundits and professionals, and there's a lot of opinions out there,  I'm going to put my two cents in.

Overall Romney ran a good, positive campaign. He certainly passed the threshold of competence and character important to most voters. But he did make some fundamental and in my view fatal errors that I think cost him the election. Romney left a lot of votes on the table. With such a target rich, incompetent individual like Barack Obama I think the mistakes were with messaging and tactics. Look I know the Democrats would have us believe it's demographics and believe me, I don't discount that argument. But Romney lost the white working class all through the Mid-West and three million conservative voters stayed home. Those are votes that should have been in the bag, votes that would have won him the election. So there's obviously more to it than just demographics. I've got a few ideas as to why and you can agree or disagree.

First and foremost was Romney's failure to hit Obamacare in the debates. Candidate Romney knew how Obama would counter; he would have said but Gov. Romney, the Affordable Care Act was much the same as Romneycare, a program you instituted in your home State of Massachusetts. You must have liked it then? To which Romney should have stared straight into the camera and said "look, the people of my state wanted this. I felt an obligation to give it our best shot and to do everything in my power to make it work. We had a bi-partisan consensus for the program, we had bi-partisan cooperation on creating the program and the final bill passed with bi-partisan support. We ALL tried to make it work, it didn't and it doesn't. But the point is the States are where grand experiments like Romneycare (don't run from the word) should be tried, NOT AT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT LEVEL! If we make a mistake like this in Boston it's a lot easier to pull back than if you do the same in Washington. There is no exit strategy from Obamacare. Go down this road and there's no turning back because you're burning every bridge, the infrastructure of the whole health-care system. But I guess that's the point for you isn't it Mr. President? But let me get back to the differences in the programs themselves. Mr. President, you and your party rammed through that bill. You had no bi-partisan anything. You had no input from anybody apart from the Democrats in Congress. No public input, no Republican input, no input from any outside group or think tank. Republicans weren't allowed to amend the bill, offer suggestions, they were not allowed to even read the bill before it was voted on and passed. This is the kind thing Hugo Chavez or Vladimir Putin does. This is not how legislation is crafted in a democracy. What you did was use authoritarian tactics to push through unpopular legislation and now you want to blame our side for not cooperating? And if Obamacare fails, which it is doing now with the increase in insurance premiums, I'm sure you'll blame that on Republicans as well. Mr. President, this is foolish and naive behavior and worse still is the fact that Obamacare is a bad, in fact dangerous takeover of our healthcare system and as President I will work aggressively to repeal it. Then we can get to work on REAL health-care reform. And who would know better than I that it's bad legislation that won't do what you claim it will, as you've said many times, it's based on RomneyCare."

Secondly Benghazi. In the third debate Romney should have stared straight at Obama and asked, "Mr. President what is going on? We had an Ambassador killed and your State Department sends out Ambassadress Susan Rice out with some story about a video on YouTube? You blamed the video in front of the UN delegation for all the world to see. Now you say it's terrorism and that you described it as such from the beginning. Just tell us what happened Sir? And please none of this, it's under investigation nonsense, that's a lawyer's trick. You've had ample time to to gather the facts. But you won't tell us, the American people what happened. You have stonewalled and obfuscated, with the help of the media I might add. What are the facts? What do you know now, what did you know at the time and when did you know it? How did we fail to protect our ambassador and four other Americans? Please, we want to know." An exchange like that would have nailed Obama to the wall. The media would have no longer been able to run interference and Obama would not have been able to run out the clock. This was a big opportunity missed by Romney.

Thirdly, we lost the white working-class vote in the Mid-West. Not all that surprising really. Since George Sr., through Bill Clinton and GWB every free trade bill that came down the pike, and there are more than you can imagine, have had bi-partisan support, especially NAFTA. And they all have something else in common, they screw the working class. Romney touched on this a bit with China but he didn't come anywhere close to hitting it as hard as he should have. And with Team Obama running ads in Ohio since last winter positioning Romney as an out of touch, rich guy outsourcer, it's no surprise Romney couldn't close the sale. In twenty five years we've lost 55,000 factories, not jobs, manufacturing facilities. Chew on that a while before you complain about how stupid folks in Ohio are.

Fourth, we had huge gender gap...again. With married women we did ok, not great but ok. With single women we got slaughtered. How do we attract young females? This will be a tough one. Typically with the unmarried female you've got a combination of youth, inexperience and naivete; highly susceptible to an emotional appeal like denying birth control. Or a young single mom highly dependent on the social safety net. And then there's the older, embittered, childless female (most of CW's ex-girlfriends probably fall into this category) who has had some man problems and can't stop eating cookie dough ice-cream. Ok Ok, just kidding, well sorta. If it makes you feel any better young males are far worse, far more stupid and far more malleable than women in terms of manipulation. How the hell do you think we get them to fight wars? But again the question is how do we attract unmarried women? I really don't know. We can parse the abortion argument but I'm not sure how much would get through the Democrat controlled media propaganda machine. My guess is it probably can't be done. This is Julia we're talking about, and Julia likes her free stuff.        

And lastly, we lost bad with Hispanics. We got nearly 30% but those are the ones who have been here a while and built a life, i.e. the Cubans. Heather MacDonald with the Manhattan Institute has studied immigrants and immigration issues for years and she claims border issues or amnesty have little to do with Hispanic support for Democrats. For them it's all about wealth transfer. For the last two years Obama has advertised ON MEXICAN RADIO advising to potential illegals that food-stamps and other social services were available to them if they should ever find themselves in the US. How's that for going after the Hispanic vote? As Rush Limbaugh says, it's hard to compete with Santa Claus. Republicans will never get this vote until these folks have something to protect.

At this moment in American history the electorate is split 50/50. The 50% who vote Republican do so in part to protect their hard earned assets from the 25% who want to take those assets and give them to the 25% who want those assets, for free. Admittedly long term we conservatives are in bad trouble (read anything written by Pat Buchanan in the last ten years) but this election could have been won. Unlike McCain Romney certainly had the resources to go toe to toe with Obama. He was just not willing to get down in the mud and fight Axelrod, Messina, Cutler and Plouffe on their own terms. I've said it before, Romney needed a Lee Atwater.


Friday, November 9, 2012

A Distinction Without a Difference

Ok we lost. We've got some work to do. We need to figure why we can't attract minority voters, women, gays and the idiocracy demographic. We need to accept amnesty, open borders and take anyone and everyone into the bosom of Abraham (Obama). We need to embrace the welfare state, gay marriage and abortion. Right now we are too old, too white and too male. Simply put, we need to adjust our values and ideology if we are to survive as a viable political party.

What's that? You don't agree? Neither do I, but that is exactly what folks like David Frum, David Brooks and Steve Schmidt will be advising. There are a few problems with this argument, and the one thing that really jumps out at me is... THEY ARE DEAD WRONG! I'll say from the outset, I don't care about the Republican Party. Any political party is just an organizing vehicle, no more no less. What I care about is the conservative/libertarian movement and a government that actually respects the Constitution. But the Republicans just turning into Democrat-lite would be a distinction without a difference, and doomed to fail. This kind of advise is like telling a rape victim to just lay back and enjoy it, can't do anything about it anyway.

To begin with, we are inclusive. We have many accomplished, brilliant people of all ethnicities and backgrounds and they are universally and continually harassed and vilified by a corrupt media. We live in a world where a guy like Clarence Thomas who scratched his way up, in a time and a place under some horrific circumstances most of us cannot imagine, a good brilliant man like this can have his name and reputation impugned unmercifully with no evidence whatsoever apart from the word of a liberal academic. But Bill Clinton, a guy with a well known sordid reputation, with tons of physical evidence, witnesses, victims etc., a guy like him gets a pass. And that was years ago, media corruption has only gotten worse since. So again, we are inclusive but it means nothing because the trouble we're in has nothing to do with inclusion.

No, we should not compromise our core values and principles. How could we? We are who we are. We don't run as this and rule as that. We don't hide our love of freedom or our insistence on personal responsibility. We are generous to a fault with our own money but refuse to voluntarily pay tribute to anyone based on past historical grievances that we had nothing to do with. We don't subvert the Constitution to appease ethnicity or gender or any arbitrary group/attribute simply because they are a voting bloc.  

This may indeed relegate us to permanent minority status, at least at this point in history. But truth is truth no matter if only one person says it, and a lie is lie if everybody says it. We must continue to speak the truth at every opportunity. Remember what Orwell said: "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." Make no mistake, that's what we are now, revolutionaries. We can choose the path of the coward and be serfs, or we can stick to our guns and eventually take back what is ours.

You may think I'm being hysterical, just talking a lot of nonsense, but I'm telling you now, hard times are coming. The system is weak and getting weaker. Sooner or later it will crash, I don't know when and I don't know how, but when that day finally arrives and the wealth runs out, this coalition of dependents, leftists and morons will be tearing each other's eyes out fighting over the crumbs. That will be our moment of opportunity. I'm telling you now, be ready, prepare, button up and protect yourself, resist when you can and wait for the inevitable. Do the best you can and remember, this place is ours and God wants us to win. Everything depends on us because we are the last hope for liberty on this planet. We are the last rampart before a new dark age, and keep on thinking free.


Nobel Prize Winning Economist on the Fiscal Cliff

Of course I mean Paul Krugman.

I've written here before about one path a newly elected President Obama might take--that is, doing nothing.  He could let ALL current tax rates go up in a way that would ON ITS OWN bring in something in the neighborhood of $4T in revenue.  He could let the sequester cuts go on as scheduled and cut $1.2T in spending.  (These are ten year figures).  He could let the payroll tax go back to its previous rate.  In some cases he simply does nothing, in other cases he wields an over-ride proof veto pen.

It is possible that doing so would take the economy into a recession.  But that's what Ronald Reagan did--on purpose--in his Administration.  When the economy emerged, it was in a different place and ready to grow.  Besides--he has no more elections to stand for.  This is all about legacy, and if he feels he can pull this off, he will.

If PBO does this, he winds up dramatically cutting the deficit/debt, he establishes a new baseline of revenue, and he achieves the Valhalla of Democratic policy by cutting the defense budget.  As Krugman points out, Obama holds all the cards here.

What's interesting isn't that Krugman seems to be advocating this path because he thinks it makes fiscal sense--he's doing it because he wants to see payback; naked political power exercised in the service of rubbing the Right's nose in it.

As a bit of a Machiavellian, I find myself thinking there is something to this approach.  The difference between Krugman and me is that only one of us has won a Nobel Prize in Economics.

The Fox News Obsession

I realize a small portion of readers of this blog will read the title of this piece and think "ah, yes.  CW's going to talk about the obsession that Fox News has with ......".  They would however, be incorrect.

This is a piece about the left's obsession with Fox News.  Here's how it plays out.  I have a group of friends--carefully managed and cultivated--who are left of center.  I follow them on Facebook, and they appear to follow me.  I say "appear", because Facebook (thankfully) allows you to meter the exposure one has to the rantings of one's Friends.  I would be shocked if most of the folks with whom I am friendly in the real world have not activated filters against my mumblings. 

The thing about these folks is their obsession with Fox News.  Any opportunity to criticize FNC, any opportunity to make light of something said or done there (Karl Rove's meltdown election night being the latest example), and any opportunity to tie FNC to the most extreme lunacy on the right--is gleefully taken.  These are very smart people, in the main.  I mean VERY smart.  Yet they fail to see the irony (I hope I'm using irony correction--you get what I mean.  These folks are so smart that they will correct me if I am not) in their own actions. 

You see, it is the very existence of a singular target--Fox News--that enables their ranting.  Fox News sticks out--not because it is right of center--which it is--but because EVERY OTHER MAJOR TELEVISION MEDIA OUTLET is left of center.  Every single one.  Luke 6:42 spoke of this 2000 years ago..."Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye."

The hypocrisy of these folks is simply hard to believe.  They subsist from a steady diet of lefty news/information/entertainment without questioning it, yet take to their sedan chairs with the vapors at the existence of a media source that is incongruous with their tastes. 

President Obama won this election fair and square--his smart guys were better than our smart guys.  But the aid and comfort rendered his re-election effort by the Bought and Paid For Media was obvious and unrelenting.  That one major media outlet was on the job is something good about our modern world.  Something has to challenge the government's propaganda ministry.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

This Election Was Lost in 1986

There's a good line in an old movie where the protagonist (a football player) is talking about getting to the Super Bowl: "And when we get there, let's already have won!" It's a great line and for me it conjures up images of hard work, preparation and attention to the fundamentals. As conservatives that is exactly what we have not be doing.

Romney ran a good campaign, not great but good. If he would have done this or that differently and gotten a break at the right time, he may have even pulled it off. But I'm certain that the American people, at least those interested, had enough information about the man to make a decision.

No, the problem is, be it this election or the next, what happened Tuesday was baked into the cake starting in 1986. That was the year Ronald Reagan signed a sweeping immigration law worked out with Congressional Democrats Tip O'Neal and Jim Wright giving amnesty to 3 million illegal aliens (those were the days!). It was sold to the American people as a prudent compromise that gave illegals already here resident status but there would be much tighter border security and employers would face tough penalties for hiring illegals. Well we got the amnesty part, but not much else. The Democrats double crossed us as usual.

Since then we've had a steady influx of immigrants both legal and illegal. The illegals are typically poorly educated peasants from Mexico and Central America and the legals are typically poorly educated peasants from every third-world shit-hole this side of the slums of Calcutta. When they arrive their poverty rates are off the scale and they require (and get) much more government services (in percentage terms) than our own indigenous poor. As you might imagine they vote solidly Democrat.

The beneficiaries of Reagan's amnesty now have sons, daughters and grandchildren who are of course US citizens. Forget about legal immigration's impact on the election, just take away Tuesday's Hispanic vote and Romney wins in a landslide much like Reagan. And the Hispanic vote isn't going anywhere but up. This is the new reality. We have a lot of people who are hostile to what they see as the white power structure. They often times come from countries that don't value freedom, liberty or anything resembling American values. They are here to take, and with the help and encouragement of the Democratic Party they have elected a President. This situation will not change in our lifetime.

So, in the immortal word of Lenin, what is to be done? I'm not sure but I'm open to suggestions. There are a good few options I can think of off the top of my head, all of them bloody. But unfortunately for we conservatives electoral politics is not one of them. The Democrats have already won.

And it Begins...

Story here of a Vegas business owner who made it clear to his 114 employees that if Obama were reelected,  he'd be forced to let go of 22 of them.  He made good on his promise yesterday.

He didn't tell his folks who to vote for, but did clearly outline what they'd be in store for if he was forced to implement Obamacare's burdens. 

I'm guessing this guy is not alone. 

Thanks Chris Christie!

Contrary to what some believe, I don't think Chris Christie cost Romney the election, but he certainly didn't help.  From Daniel Henninger's WSJ column today:

'Exit polls show that 9% of the electorate decided who to vote for just days before Tuesday, and among all voters, 42% said Mr. Obama's Hurricane Sandy response-the Christie photo op-was an important factor.  Of those, more than 65% voted for Mr. Obama.'

He's finished on the national stage.  His claims of 'I should be able to praise someone for doing a good job' would be true in a different world, but not six days from an election in the political world we live in.   And besides that, what exactly has O done in regards to the storm?  At this point in 2005, post-Katrina, people were screaming that George Bush hated black people.  Now people are freezing, starving and looting.  As Bob Dole might say...where's the outrage? 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The (Other) People Have Spoken

Well it's done. The coalition of idiots, leftists and racists has spoken. It seems we are outnumbered. This is reality and we may as well get on board. There's no use crying over spilled milk so we must move forward (somehow that rings familiar). It is perfectly obvious a majority of Americans are desirous of tax increases. As a nation we will very, VERY soon be faced with a debt crisis that will make the financial crisis of four years ago look mild by comparison. We must do something immediately to generate revenues, and I think our esteemed President recognizes this fact (after all, who would know more about debt than Barack Obama).

Therefore I propose an immediate 78% income tax on those making 1 million dollars a year or more starting immediately with no deductions and no exceptions. This will be an across the board tax without regard to how the income is made be it salary, investments, inheritance or gifts. If you get the money anything over and above one million dollars will be taxed at 78%. Unless of course you happen to reach the threshold of 1.2 million dollars, in which case it will graduate up 5% for every 200,000 thousand dollars additional income so on and so forth. There will be no tax tricks allowed;  no delayed compensation or deferred percentage based on market indexes in a year to be named later. No offshore shenanigans, tax attorney parlor tricks or trust fund dodges. The rich must be made to pay "a little more".

For example, let's say a Mr. George Timothy Clooney from Lexington, Kentucky were to hit it big and receive a 20 million dollar windfall. Mr. Clooney's income would be taxed at today's rates with normal deductions up to the first million. After that the next 200k would be taxed at 78%, the next 200k 83% (or 5% more) until we reach a maximum of 98%. Now I'll let you do the math but I can tell you, this will go a long way towards addressing our budget problems. If Mr. Clooney were to say take up residence in a foreign country, and he were to generate income is said country, he would be required to pay his tax as per any citizen of the United States in the tax year it was earned or upon re-entry to the US, in full with interest, otherwise be immediately jailed as a tax scofflaw (I hope that's sufficiently confusing, we are talking taxes after all).

I can hear the cries now. This is insane, crazy, outrageous! No it isn't. The tax rate for the highest incomes in 1944 was 94% with a much lower threshold than I'm proposing and somehow that all worked out for the best. Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures and I think we can all agree these are not normal times. Now I'm sure you think this is all tongue in cheek, let's have a little fun and games. It's not. I am absolutely serious and I will make my thoughts known to my Congressman Mike McIntyre (D-NC). How could he say no?

More Depressing News from Last Night

-Alan "Republicans want you to die" Grayson is going back to the House.
-Allen West is not
-Mia Love isn't either
-Elizabeth Warren.  No explanation required.

But there is some good news:
-If John Kerry becomes Secretary of State, there'll be a special election for his seat...Scott Brown may find his way back in, if he has the stomach for it.
-Democrats will have to defend 20 Senate seats in 2014, Republicans only 13.  I recommend any Senate candidate or anyone even thinking about becoming a Senate candidate never mention the word abortion.  Ever.
-The entire country hasn't lost their mind.  A ballot measure in Oklahoma banning affirmative action passed 59-41.  Montana had a ballot measure denying services to passed 79-21.

We've got to cling to something.

An Idea to Kick Around

The President wants to raise taxes on "the rich".  Republicans reject this because of the impact on small business proprietors.

Why not create a tax bracket for sole proprietors?   Or actually, a bracket within existing brackets.  Here's the idea....

If you are a sole proprietor (or whatever other corporate or quasi-corporate entity that represents a small business), you get locked in at existing rates...or even better, you get the current rate - 1%. 

If you are not a small business owner, your income is taxed at the new (presumably higher in some cases) rate.

Job creators get a break, and those with higher incomes not directly creating other jobs pay the new tax.

Anything wrong with my thinking on this?

Some Random Political Thoughts

So, I'm ensconced at my post-election depression hideaway, mostly reading the various Conservative pundits talk about why Romney lost.   I had a nice massage a couple of hours ago, and while it worked a few knots out of my back, there's one still in the middle of my chest. 

Many thanks to the folks who have called today to buck up my's good to have friends.  Don't feel bad if you haven't called (Sally), 'cause I know you feel as bad as I do.

Here's perhaps the best piece I've seen all day on why Obama won.

Apparently, John Boehner feels free of the sea anchor of the Tea Party, and he's going to seize the moment to start working on a deal with the President.  Good on him.  I'd love to see him cut a deal on revenue and spending, for the good of the country.  And then I'd like to see it cost him his job.  Not because I have any particular animus toward him, but I want to start pushing the "Ryan/Rubio" leadership team.  I want Ryan as Speaker of the House and Rubio to replace that fellow from Kentucky...what's his Minority Leader.

I have a feeling both Boehner and Obama feel empowered.  Obama had to walk away from the previous deal because it wasn't enough in revenue for the libs on his team.  He doesn't need them anymore.  Boehner couldn't take Obama's change to the deal (increasing revenue by 50%) b/c of his fear that the caucus might abandon him.  I don't think they would now--his position is strengthened.  I think it is time for a golf game between the Speaker and the President.

You can tell probably that I'm in a mood to solve some problems.  That's one of the reasons i supported Romney--I saw him as a problem solver.  He can't solve them now, so someone is going to have to.  Why not John Boehner?

I talked to my Mom earlier, and she had some incredible perspective.  She was being very gentle and loving with me about my disappointment, and then she said, "can you imagine how Romney feels?"  No, I can't.  But if anyone is grounded enough to get on with life, it is he.

Dems are licking their chops at the prospect of a Republican civil war....I'm not sure they won't get one.

Folks are writing that the D's felt this way after 2004, and then four years later they had Obama.  Good point.  But they also had a party that was in tune with the changing demographics of the country.  We don't.

Up Early and Reflecting

My body's clock did not concur with its brain's decision to sleep in this morning, so I find myself here at the computer earlier than I'd hoped to be, muddling through the postmortems on last night's election.  I find myself in disagreement with The Hammer's analysis of the election, primarily because I always considered this to be Obama's race to lose, rather than Romney's to win.  It is indeed difficult to unhorse a President.  Much as I would LOVE to comfort myself with notions and "if only's", I come back to a fundamental sense that as a Party, we are in deep kimchee.  Yes, the popular vote was close, and yes, the House remains firmly Republican and yes, we won some governor's races and yes, Obama was less popular this time around than last.....but the truth is we got our asses kicked last night and it is time to do some serious soul-searching.

Mitt Romney did not lose last night because he was a flawed candidate--in my view, Romney was splendidly qualified for the job.  He lost because his ideas were less popular. Our ideas were less popular.  I know it is hard to hear folks, but the center-right approach to governing is decidedly less popular than it used to be, and while we are doing just fine with white people, the part of our population that is growing does not see government as the bogeyman that we believe it to be.  An increasing percentage of our fellow citizens sees government as a force for good, and they voted in numbers last night.

So what do we do? .

Well, we could double down and move even farther to the right.  This is the "we lost last night because we weren't Conservative enough, because we didn't hew to our beliefs, because we nominated the timid, moderate rather than a fire breathing Conservative."  I am unsure how the logic of this argument works, but I am certain we'll hear it loudly and relentlessly applied.  I believe that this is the quickest route to ignominy, and either the rise of a third party or the relegation of the Republican Party to minority status for decades.

Or we can change.  Doesn't mean that the have to repudiate what we believe, just means that we have to modulate our approach.

And we need to start on immigration reform.  According to exit polls, the part of our society that is growing fastest voted 70-30 for President Obama.  The voting bloc that has developed among Latinos, Blacks and liberal whites is formidable, and it will become more so if we ignore it.  We must be the party of comprehensive immigration reform, reform that shows both justice and mercy.  We have to offer hope to those here illegally--because their well-spring of support among the Latino community holds our intransigence on this issue against us.  Yes of course, we should patrol our borders more aggressively.  But the failure of our logic and our compassion on how best to deal with those already here is an albatross around our collective necks.

Additionally, we have to become downright missionary about our outreach to Black America.  It doesn't mean that we have to go into the neighborhood and try to convert multi-generational families of those dependent on government.  It does mean that we have to practice a little bit of class warfare of our own as we work like hell to gain more of the growing black middle class vote.  Like our effort among Latinos, we get nowhere with middle class blacks by culturally denigrating blacks in poverty.

Finally, white males have to man up.

What do I mean by that?  Obama took single women by the same 70-30 margin that he took Hispanics.  Why?  Because an increasing number of single women view the government--rather than marriage--as the new safety net. Think Julia--we all made fun of it when the Obama team put it out, but they weren't stupid.  Statistics are likely to show that the "gender gap" isn't really a gender gap at all; rather it is a "marriage" gap.  And the marriage gap exists because white males are increasingly happy to play the field for as long as they can, enjoying the fruits of the sexual revolution even as they contribute to marginalization of center-right governing strategies.  I can hear the howls now..."McGrath advocates marriage as a way of attracting women to the Republican Party."  Well, yes.  That's how it works.  Marriage and family appears to be correlated with our governing approach--seems sensible to me.  More married people means more Republicans in office.

Much more to come on this as we lick our wounds, but I wanted to get something out there for folks to chew on.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

President Obama is Re-Elected

I just finished typing the title to this blog, and I assure you, it was not easy.  In the past week, one part of my brain was telling me that President Obama would win--the polls in the battleground states primarily.  The other part of my brain--and maybe my heart--kept telling me that the margins of Democrat voters that were projected were just too darn high.  Republicans were going to be energized!  There was no way there would be the Dem turnout of 2008.  The polls had to be wrong.

Well, they weren't. The national polls that had Romney ahead were right--at least at the writing of this blog entry, Romney is ahead in the popular vote.  But that's not where we elect Presidents, and the swing states took a swing at Romney.  I was certain Florida and Virginia were ours--but again, as I write this, they still are not settled.

No other Presidential election has meant as much to me personally.  I do not believe that the President is leading the nation in the right direction, and I believe we have doubled down on decline with his victory.  I suspected that we had made a great mistake in 2008, and I am certain of it tonight.

I am so incredibly proud to have had the opportunity to help on Mitt Romney's campaign.  I started out supporting him because I thought he could beat the President, and I ended up hoping that he would be elected because I thought he would be a great President. I would do it all again without reservation.  He is an elementally good man, and our nation is worse off for not electing him.

I am also eternally grateful to everyone who contributed to my CW for Romney fundraising drive.  It felt so good to wake up each morning and see new donations that had come in over night, mostly from people I knew very well, but sometimes from folks I had never heard of.

I cannot bear to watch Mitt's concession speech or President Obama's victory speech.  My heart is in my stomach, and I suspect it might stay there for a few days.  I'm headed down the Shore to a resort spot for a few days to lick my wounds and be away from people I love--mostly because I think I might not be the most fun to be around while I reconcile all this.

The good news in all of this?  The blog will continue.  Had Mitt won, I likely would have had to put an end to it, if I had been asked to take a position in government.  There's no chance of that for a few years, and so I'd be happy if you kept coming round to the site every now and then to see if we've posted anything worth reading. 

Also, I'll have a little more time on my I'm hoping to join Mudge in the not-too-distant future to sit in his tree stand and think about all the deer who pass by when I'm not sitting there.

Chin up, friends.  This is a great country, and one man's eight years will not be enough to change that.  We'll have to begin thinking about what this election means for the Republican Party, and hopefully we'll generate some answers here.

God Bless America. 

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