Sunday, September 5, 2010

Progressives and Progressivism

It's always a good thing to remember that "progress", in an egg, is what we call "rotting".

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Definition of 'Meaningless'

The NAACP's recently-passed resolution decrying 'tea party' racism is meaningless because, first and foremost, there IS NO 'tea party'.
"Tea Party" (capital letters) is a philosophy -- like, you know, Liberal, Conservative, Socialist, Communist -- not a political entity. Liberal, Conservative, Socialist and Communist movements also contain racists. Ask the DOJ's chief racist, Eric Holder (no, wait, don't ask him -- he doesn't recognize racism against anyone not black).
The 'tea party' movement is sick and tired of ever-more government, pure and simple! How hard is that to understand? Governments want ever more money. Bigger governments want even more than that! Governments who kill incentive to earn income and STILL demand more tax proceeds are tightening the noose around their own necks, as Greece, Spain, Portugal, et al, are discovering. The good 'ol U.S.A. is late to that table, but seemingly unabashed by its tardiness.
If a larger percentage of blacks than whites seem willing to accept government intrusion into heretofore private spheres, then I guess the 'racist' label applies -- accept it doesn't, if it's true!
Racism is the imputation of UNJUST stereotypes on groups based on racial or ethnic makeup. If the attitudes are borne out it's, well, description! For example, it's NOT unjust to call most of today's terrorism "Islamic Terror" if virtually all of its practitioners ARE radical Islamists!
Personally, I leave it to others to define the descriptions. But, the NAACP is NOT an impartial adjudicator.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The End of Histor(ical Memory)

Bill Clinton Back In White House...
...ostensibly to advise President Obama on economic policy.
I always chuckle at Bill Clinton's good luck, or maybe good politicking: he, at least, knew when to declare victory while losing, and take the credit!
The much-praised (-belabored?) Clinton budget surpluses resulted most directly from the GOP's 1994 electoral success and subsequent welfare reform -- which Clinton vetoed twice before succumbing to overwhelming numbers. The less-popular, and effective, leg of the '90s budget boom was significant (some would say "disastrous") cuts in defense spending.
So far, the only thing Obama has pretended to match is the defense reductions, at great cost to future preparedness (note the likely suspension in the near future of the C-17 heavy-lift aircraft production as an example). Unlike Clinton, he's spent like a drunken sailor (if only he were one, God bless 'em!, he'd know what they're good for) instead of accepting reduced spending (or, at least, reduced spending increases), which Clinton did.
If Obama REALLY wants to attend to Clinton's advice, here's what'll happen next month: the president will allow unused stimulus funds to pay for the extended unemployment (and other) benefits stalled in Congress; he'll suggest the means testing of future Social Security benefits via a regime than limits high-income individuals to the CPI, and 'castes' to increases equal to wage enhancements;...and a host of other budget cost-savings.
He won't, of course, because -- unlike Clinton -- Obama is more certain of his rectitude and less concerned about his reelection (that happens when you didn't expect to get elected in the first place, I guess). Most Americans think the president is wrong about what he's right about, and don't plan to reelect him, currently -- so we're talking (again) about assuaging Narcissism. Bill Clinton might have been/be a Hedonist, but he understood his Narcissistic limitations, and its non-attraction to others.
No need to expect smartest-man-in-the-world Obama to listen to a damn thing this (reputedly successful) impeached former president says, I'd think.

Maker's Mark 46

I got a taste of the new Maker's Mark 46 today, making its debut in Middle Tennessee. I liked it.
At 94 proof, it is only slightly more spirity than the standard, healthy 90-proof Maker's Mark. But, the somewhat longer aging and the inserted new-charred staves into the pre-dump barrels add a suggestion of oakiness to the finish -- which is the first time I've EVER mentioned "finish" in a positive light regarding MM.
I like standard Maker's, except for its too-dear pricing -- a la, Jack Daniel's (Jim Beam ownership seems to have detached the linked pricing to JD Maker's management used to insist upon), as far as it goes. But, it goes -- or ends, anyway -- without any sort of finish. It's just good-tasting, then over.
Is this the best thing since sliced bread, or Very Old Fitzgerald BIB 8yo? Nope. But, it IS the better thing in Maker's Mark's so-far, two-label stable.
At $34.99 retail locally, it's at the top of its reasonable price range, but not so exorbitant not to splurge on a bottle once in a while.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Was "The Greatest Generation's" Greatest Fault Its Progeny?

(NOTE: I AM a baby-boomer, mid-cycle. I was born in 1957 to a WWII North Africa and Europe veteran who won a unit bronze star driving in blackout conditions against the Nazis, a 'better day's work than I have ever done'. The latter quote is from one Christopher Hitchens, heretofore famed as a liberal-turned-(well!)-non-liberal on security matters, whose own father sank German convoy raiders.)

For some time, I have suffered the burden of believing that my generation -- now regnant, but retiring, from university chairs and Congressional chairmanships, or being voted into retirement! -- has been the 'worst generation' of Americans, regarding its exceptionalism and existential goodness.
The military draft ended the spring of my high-school senior year, but I've always respected those who served in Vietnam. I rooted against Nixon, but regretted my only presidential vote for a Democrat, Jimmy Carter. I voted 'present' (actually, Libertarian, via Ed Clark) in 1980 before acknowledging Ronald Reagan in 1984. My big-L Liberalism lasted much less time than that of many.
Thus, it is notable to me that a pair of former Leftists who have left 'the cause' are in the news these days: David Horowitz and Hitchens, recently diagnosed with serious cancer.
Horowitz has penned a thoughtful and reasoned description of his long-term interactions with Hitchens, which may not serve to ingratiate either with today's Democrat/Liberal complex, but instructs us about it origins and progressions, nonetheless:
Second Thoughts, Part 1
Second Thoughts, Part 2
They do not make us Baby-Boomers proud, but rather the self-proclaimed, privileged progeny of generations better than ourselves.
Two of the last three U.S. presidents -- Clinton and Obama -- have been of this caustic tradition, and have done much to destroy the moral fabric of the Founders' well-grounded national prescriptions.
While there remains hope that subsequent generations have not succumbed to the national suicide that Sixties' Leftists began adopting, Horowitz and Hitchens lay plain what motivates and results from adherence to their philosophies: destruction of the only truly liberal and generous government that has achieved international prominence during man's history.
The time is short to renew an American path to future world harmony. There is, at present, no other path that espouses and allows personal freedom.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Conservative Technorati

There are, to date, two indisputable geniuses -- and I use the term literally, as they have transformed forever thinking and use of the online media -- on the Conservative/Libertarian side of the political spectrum -- godfather Glenn Harlan Reynolds, the InstaPundit, and consigliere Andrew Brietbart (,,, and now, contravertibly,
Also noted is how much humor is contained in the Right side of the ether, as opposed to the stultifying Left.

War As Economic Stimulus

American history knowledge is in such short supply that most modern Americans don't realize that after 7+ years of FDR's 'New Deal', the Great Depression economy was as bad or worse than it was when he took office in 1933. So, what brought the U.S. economy out of that depression?
As it happens, we're fighting one right now, arguably with one hand tied behind our back. While it might only take 6-12 months of serious, full production to subdue the Taliban and al-Qaida if we were to assay the task with serious dedication, imagine what the 'economic stimulus' of building aircraft, artillery, ammunition and support vehicles would do for the spirit of the American manufacturing worker! It might also do wonders for the understanding of today's political establishment: pretty much, the only reliable job-creating function the federal government has is defense manufacturing, which actually requires things be built by real workers. Virtually every other exchange of funds orchestrated by the federal government amounts to sleight-of-hand graft and/or vote-buying.
Of course, all the better, such a strident military effort and victory would change the attitudes of a majority of the world's governments and leaders toward the U.S., too -- in altogether positive (to us, anyway) ways.
We need a solid win in Afghanistan -- both for the Afghans and ourselves -- and we need jobs created ASAP. Building the machinery and equipment to secure the former will provide the latter. In the inimitable words of Michael Ledeen, "Faster please!".