Saturday, April 30, 2011

Quickies: the birth certificate (long form) edition




A round-up of news items, articles, columns and blog posts that caught our eye this past week.




“We don’t have time for such silliness,” the President said this morning. And then he flew off to Chicago to be on The Oprah Winfrey Show.



John Podhoretz on the President's lack of birth control:

Since Trump was right there in front of the media's microphones talking about the birth certificate before Obama got to microphones in the White House, we were subjected to the dumbfounding sight of the press room at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. standing empty as the president found himself forced to wait out a reality-TV performer and real-estate brand-name sleazing slanderous nonsense about him and his college grades through the airwaves.

Finally, Obama must've had enough and came out to speak anyway. Then he began by complaining about how, if he had come to talk about foreign policy, the networks wouldn't have given him the time.

True -- but the reason the networks went live with his comments about his own birth certificate was that he had lowered himself to Donald Trump's level.



B-Daddy on the odd bird currently residing in the Oval Office:
But the other thing it shows is that the President is a bit odd and will fold under pressure. As long as the birth certificate could be used to allege that Republicans and Tea Partyers were kooks, playing hide the document seemed to be a good strategy. But when Trump got aggressive Team Obama folded like a lawn chair. Interestingly enough, it was Trump's aggressive moves that put Obama in a no-win situation. With the Donald calling him out, his continued refusal to publish the document looked odd, at the very least exhibiting poor judgment. But its release makes Obama look even odder and weaker. The timing is just off and awful. It looks like he caved on a matter of principle, just because he was bullied into it. To steal Dennis Miller's baseball analogy from today's O'Reilly Factor; Obama's the baseball player with "rabbit ears" and Trump's the bench rider assigned to heckle him to get him off his game.

Bizarre. Count us among those that are baffled as to why the President chose to reveal his birth certificate at this time and especially in this manner. By not revealing it, this whole thing could remain a distraction from what is really ailing this country and the President could look, you know, Presidential by not allowing himself to be dragged down into this huckster Trump's three-ring circus.

Oh well. As we're sure he's figured out by now, he ain't in Chicago anymore.





Awesome. One of the most heavily regualted economies in the world has themselves another tainted food scandal.

Three years after China was rocked by a massive tainted-milk scandal, the country has again been hit by a wave of food scares in recent weeks.

The list includes diseased pigs used for bacon; noodles made of corn, ink and paraffin; rice contaminated with heavy metals, sausages made of rotten meat and fertilizer; and pork described as "Tron blue" because it glowed in the dark from bacteria.

That so many new scandals have emerged even after the central government implemented a sweeping food-safety law in 2009 speaks to the depth of the regulation's ineffectiveness, experts say.



OK. OK. They've got poisonous food and make lead-based painted children's toys but they're so totally over us on hi-speed choo-choos, right?

Today the reality is somewhat different. In February, Liu Zhijun, minister of railways in the People's Republic of China, was arrested after investigations into cost overruns and poor performance of the ministry's showcase bullet trains, with a dash of corruption thrown in.

The modern marvel he oversaw has caused his ministry to run up some $276 billion in debt, roughly five times the amount that bankrupted General Motors. The money was mostly borrowed, ironically from the same Chinese banks that are financing our debt. And the trains aren't running safely or on time.

On April 13, the government announced train speeds would be reduced from a maximum 216 miles per hour to 186 as a result of concerns about safety, energy efficiency and affordability.

Of course, cost overruns and kickbacks could never happen here, and we all know how safe, efficient and profitable Amtrak has been. Build it and they will ride, we are told. Except that it hasn't quite worked out that way in China.

The Beijing-Tianjin line, built at a cost of $46 million per mile, is losing more than $100 million a year. Ticket prices are high for a Chinese citizenry with an estimated per-capita income of $4,300, still below the world average despite China's touted economic boom. People still prefer riding buses over these government-mandated bullet trains.
Paging Thomas Friedman. Paging Thomas Friedman.





Standing on principal: Democratic fundraising groups will take undisclosed donations, too.





Dana Milbank on partying with the ruling class:

How the journalist prom got out of control

We commend Milbank for not attending the White House Correspondants' Dinner and now we will ask him and the rest of the press corps to start asking this administration what the hell it is we are doing in Libya and to start calling out the President for his rank hypocrisy on such matters as signing statements, just for starters.





Here's some more of that new civility everyone is talking about:


Labor lefties target Walker supporters for boycotts and vandalism.





And finally... The Hammer on leading from behind:
To be precise, leading from behind is a style, not a doctrine. Doctrines involve ideas, but since there are no discernible ones that make sense of Obama foreign policy — Lizza’s painstaking two-year chronicle shows it to be as ad hoc, erratic and confused as it appears — this will have to do.

And it surely is an accurate description, from President Obama’s shocking passivity during Iran’s 2009 Green Revolution to his dithering on Libya, acting at the very last moment, then handing off to a bickering coalition, yielding the current bloody stalemate. It’s been a foreign policy of hesitation, delay and indecision, marked by plaintive appeals to the (fictional) “international community” to do what only America can.

Yep. We're in the best of hands.

Entitlements vs. Rights

Give us a chance so we can dicover the most valuable ways to serve one another.


Dennis Prager from NRO on entitlements vs. rights and free markets vs. the welfare state:

What handouts do, and what the transformation of handouts into rights does, is create a citizenry that increasingly lacks the most important character trait — gratitude. Of all the characteristics needed for both a happy and morally decent life, none surpasses gratitude. Grateful people are happier, and grateful people are more morally decent. That is why we teach our children to say “thank you.” But the welfare state undoes that. One does not express thanks for a right. So, instead of “thank you,” the citizen of the welfare state is taught to say, “What more can I get?”

Yet, while producing increasingly selfish people, the mantra of the Left, and therefore of the universities and the media, has been for generations that capitalism and the free market, not the welfare state, produces selfish people.



John Stossel was on O'Reilly the other night and claimed that private charity would step in and replace the broader government-sponsored and managed social safety net were it ever dismantled. We tend to agree with him but we wonder if we've passed the point of no return in that our desire and incentive to voluntarily give our time, talent and treasure to helping those less fortunate than us has been blunted to the point that our belief is no longer true.

When one starts claiming that a job, a house and health care are "rights", how is anything then not on the table to be provided and which results in the involuntary confiscation of those that create, build and provide those assumed rights?

We're seeing some positive signs particularly at the state level where steps are being taken to curtail the collective bargaining "rights" of government employee unions and also to prevent the automatic deduction (see also, confiscation) of tax-payer-funded salaries which go directly to political causes, most notably those that involve the further expansion of union "rights".

Rights supported by the confiscation of goods and services are not right at all and that's why we love that quote above that was taken from the Keynes v Hayek smackdown in the previous post.


Give us a chance = Free will not top down/command and control decision-making will allow...

So we can discover = our God-given talents, intellect and ability to figure out...

the most valuable ways = achieving the most efficient means...

to serve one another = of being a positive force in society whether in the market place or charity.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Radio KBwD is on the air




Going in a slightly different direction today but its one we think you will enjoy.


Who's up for a little macro-economics, freedom and liberty smackdown?



Ladies and Gentelmen, it's John Maynard Keynes vs. F.A. Hayek!


Give us a chance so we can discover the most valuable ways to serve one another.






Yeah, we should've figured: Hayek who has been dead for nearly 20 years has been digitally resurrected and has his own Facebook page, here.

Follower blog post of the day

It could never happen here, could it?


One of the criticisms we've heard through the years regarding Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is that its portrayal of the government as oppressor was too overbearing and exaggerated.

Ya think?

Just last week brought news that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) was attempting to dictate where it was a private enterprise could and could not do business.

Straight out of the pages of Atlas Shrugged Obama-appointed Lafe Solomon has filed a complaint on behalf of the NLRB contending that Boeing must manufacture 787 Dreamliner airplanes in Washington, a non-right-to-work state, rather than completing a new plant in South Carolina, a right-to-work state. Thus by regulatory fiat the NLRB might soon declare that its illegal to move to a freer state to do business. Can you hear the shackles clicking closed on your legs? By what right? By what right does a government bureaucrat dictate where we can work?

Please check out Shane Atwell's outstanding post on this matter, here.

Getting max value for your dollar?




Awww...


Hollywood has sort of lost that loving feeling.




Still, Obama isn’t exactly a darling of the stars anymore.


Actor Matt Damon, who stumped for Obama in Florida in ’08, publicly slammed the president last month, telling Piers Morgan that he believes the president has “misinterpreted his mandate.”


Damon isn’t the only one grumbling. Other celebs who took active roles in Obama’s 2008 campaign have since knocked his performance as president.


Hip-hop mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs told The Source magazine earlier this year that “I'd rather have a black president that was man enough to say that he was doing something for black people have one term than a president who played the politics game have two terms.”


Barbra Streisand, who crooned her support for Obama in ’08, admitted in December that she was “a little” disappointed in his leadership on the issue of “don’t ask, don’t tell” in the military. (Streisand won’t participate in any of the fundraising events on Thursday because of scheduling conflicts, said a rep.)


Even Black Eyed Peas frontman wil.i.am, the force behind the incredibly popular “Yes We Can” video tribute to Obama, has expressed his frustration. “I don’t want to hope anymore. I don’t think we should hope anymore. We hoped enough. Now we have to do,” the artist said in a January interview with The New York Times.


Despite all that apparent gloominess, the President was out here in SoCal last week doing some fund-raising and was still able to charge $33,000 a plate at one particular event in L.A. So, as we are wont to do from time to time, let's see what those folks were getting for their hard-earned scratch.



Closing Keeping open Gitmo.

Ending Formalizing the indefinite detention of suspected terrorists.

Ending Maintaining military tribunals.

Not letting unemployment get above 8 10.5 percent with a $800 billion stimulus package.

Discontinuing Continuing other Bush-era policies like rendition, Project Gunrunner and TARP.

Ending Throwing into warp drive the politicization of the Justice Department under the leadership of the biggest hack in the administration.

Engineering a bankruptcy cramdown of domestic auto companies that will most likely cost the U.S. tax-payers tens of billions of dollars.

Engaging in an act of war against a country that posed no threat whatsoever to the U.S. with without the consent of Congress.

Swift Painfully slow response to national disasters.

Ending Maintaining the practice of signing statements.

Signing off on predator drone strikes for the ostensible purpose of assassinating a foreign head of state.


We'll stop here but suffice to say, those Obamaites are indeed getting quite a bang for their buck, wouldn't you say?

Thursday, April 28, 2011

MAXED OUT: If you tap it they will come


Despite the awesome weather we seem to enjoy here in SD, why take any chances... stay inside!
Our resident safety expert, Max, will give us the low down on the best places for this.




Is it just me or does San Diego have the best weather in the world? Yes, it’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood and I’m here to tell you where to go drinking in the city kiddos, so strap on your tennies and get ready to get your drink on. Let’s do this!


As you may know I like to drink beer, but what you may not know is that I prefer to drink it outside my humble abode. So today I’m going to give you a list of my favorite places to drink the fizzy deliciousness in the lovely city of San Diego, when to go, and who to look for. The criteria for these havens of hops include tap line-up, service, food and ambiance. Yup, let’s do this!


HOFFER’S – 8282 La Mesa Blvd.

Of course I’m going to start this little ditty off with my place of employment, are you kidding? Let’s see, 24 beers on draft (hand-picked by yours truly and Mr. Michael Craig) a fairly compelling bottle line-up, 20 wines by the glass, 8 ports and over 500 cigars to choose from - my little joint is the best beer bar this side of the I-15 if I do say so myself. Several local restaurants deliver directly to this La Mesa diamond in the rough, my personal favorite being La Torta. Very chill, low key environment, only issue being that if you sit at the bar you are bound to bump your knees once or twice. Service? Duh! I’m the freakin’ barkeep, of course the service is off the hook, dummy! Why do I work here? I LOVE THIS PLACE! Oh, one other problem is that it is in LA MESA! Good news is no flat-billed idiots are picking fights cuz it just ain’t that kinda place. COME VISIT! Sundays are my day there, never too busy, and did I mention, I’m there?


TORONADO – 4026 30th Street

At around 40 beers on draft and around 100 in the bottle this is my personal favorite beer bar in San Diego. Toronado came to San Diego some 5 or 6 years ago and brought with it its San Francisco mind set, as its big brother is in the Lower Haight of the City by the Bay. Their draft list is brilliant, with a wide array of local beers and craft ales from all over the world.


If you don’t like the draft list (which would surprise me) their bottle list has vintage ales that can typically only be found at the breweries themselves. They have three areas in which improvement would be nice. The ambiance is mediocre at best, feeling rather stale and placid at times. The food, made fresh in their kitchen, is slightly over-priced and rather unfulfilling (their mac-n-queso is actually not so shabby, but don’t do the pulled-pork sammy.) And their beer board is rather pretentious with its lack of description on any level. Look for my girl, Brandy, who also happens to be the bar manager and knows what she’s talking about when it comes to the beers. Mondays tend to be the best when it comes to frugality because from 6-close all local beers are $3. Oh, and the outdoor smoking patio is definitely a bonus for this humble patron.


HAMILTON’S TAVERN – 1521 30th Street

The most overrated beer bar in San Diego? Why yes, yes, you are. Nestled in the heart of South Park, this bar is a San Diego must, but you must only go there once to understand why once is enough. The tap list is so pretentious its crazy, featuring Belgian ales and lacking in the San Diego beer scene. You’ll be lucky to find a decent West Coast IPA on draft which simply baffles this old boy’s brain, seeing as though it happens to be located in the capitol of the WCIPA. The food is actually pretty damn good, featuring pub fare that includes great burgers and an amazingly extensive grilled cheese line-up. SIGN ME UP!


If you can find a seat, do yourself a favor, hold on to that with your life cuz it’s going fast. And yes, they allow dogs inside. If you have a dog, cool, but why the hell would you bring your pitbull to a bar? Just doesn’t compute. I don’t know which bartender to go see because I don’t go there very often anymore and the night doesn’t matter because it’s always too loud and crowded. They have a couple of subsidiary bars including Small Bar and Bar Eleven. Small bar is a cool bar during the day but is way too loud and crowded for me at night. I’ve only been to Bar Eleven a few times but I hear that their live music is pretty good. While it is a small venue it sells out fast and can be too crowded, so I hear.


O’BRIEN’S – 4646 Convoy Street

Known as the original beer bar in San Diego, O’Brien’s is a San Diego main stay. While short, its tap list is sweet, the food is good, and the service is better than terrible. Smoking patio: Check. Honestly though, this place is very unassuming, with about 15 beers on draft, but the line-up tends to favor the San Diego scene and leans toward the hoppy side. My favorite! I cannot tell you the best day to go, but as it is more of an Irish pub, I can tell you to avoid any major soccer matches. Don’t really know the bar staff all that well but I can tell you that they tend to be cute and female, so does it really matter? Standard pub fare is offered, good burgers, and great french fries are available. Oh, and the ambiance? Have you ever been to an Irish pub? Ya, feels pretty much like that.


THE NEIGHBORHOOD – 777 G Street

Petco Park is a newer stadium located in the new and improved East Village of downtown San Diego and The Neighborhood is just on the outskirts, and apparently the criteria for working here is either a mustache or a pretty face. While slightly douchey and pretentious, this joint has a tap and bottle list only paralleled in San Diego by Toronado, even breaking down the different categories for you. Their beer menu dismantles the beer world into several categories making it very easy to pick out the beer for the mood that you’re in at any given time. Outdoor smoking patio: Check. I will say that the food is mediocre and over-priced, seeing as though they don’t even offer KETCHUP! I know, right? Try to avoid days when the Padres are playing a home game because those tend to be the days when all of the rejects from La Jolla show up in their polos and loafers and try to avoid the lunch crowd of the downtown cubical-ers. And if you show up on a random Friday afternoon you may run into a couple of handsome fellows on the patio talking sports and crushing several IPAs (Hint: I’m one of those guys.) And if Sarah is there, please say ‘hi’ from Friday Max. And if Liza is there say ‘hi’ from Friday Dean. And if the owner shows up, tell him to shave his silly little mustache!


Alright, you crazy kids, while there are several other “beer bars” in San Diego, those are the only ones that I can really give you a good ear bending on. Feel free to check out some others here in the city and tell me what you think. Maybe your beautiful self can teach me a thing or two. But until next time, and thanks as always for checkin’ out my post, feel free to comment in the section below, on Facebook, or at maxamilliondollars@gmail.com.

And until next time my beer loving brethren, have a beer for me.



(ed. note: Max said, "... while there are several other “beer bars” in San Diego, those are the only ones that I can really give you a good ear bending on." He lies but we'll let him get around to admitting that, himself.)

You were expecting...?

From The Feed:

In a fashion statement only the French would make, a Parisian designer is selling a $1,395 tank top made to look like a tattered American flag marred by cigarette-burn holes and held together by safety pins. And it’s turning into one of spring’s hottest sellers.

The top, part of Balmain’s spring collection, sold out in minutes on luxury-fashion Web site Net-a-Porter.

Forever 21 and Topshop designed knockoffs of the protest-chic tank, which model Gisele Bundchen wore in a Chinese Vogue spread. But neither tear up Old Glory as much as Balmain’s original, designed by Christophe DeCarnin, who recently left the fashion house after reportedly checking into a mental hospital for exhaustion and depression. .




Two intitial thoughts: 1) Frankly, we'd be a little worried if the French weren't pulling something asinine like this, and 2) just one more reason to hate Tom Brady.

(Insert clever Pink Floyd reference here)

As we were really good students all through our formal cirricula, people are sometimes taken aback to hear that we did not like school and, in fact, somewhat dreaded the rigid structure and numbing monotony of the K-12 school life. And it wasn't like we were any fire-breathing Objectivist carrying around a copy of The Fountainhead
in our backpack - it just seemed that there should've been a more effective and efficient way of education. At the end of the day, asking a 12-year old kid to sit still for 5 or 6 individual 50-minute sessions seems patently ridiculous.

So, some years on, we're wondering, where the heck was this guy when we were growing up?


"Schools by their very structure are preparing kids for some sort of authoritarian lifesytle."





"For all the arts we have to allow for trial and error, experimentation, complete liberty and even caprice."

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Greatest play in baseball history*



We're a little late to the party but better late than never especially when it's something this cool. Monday marked the 35th anniversary of the greatest play in baseball history when at Dodger Stadium, Chicago Cub outfielder, Rick Monday, saved the American flag from getting set on fire by William Thomas and his 11 year-old son.

Growing up as Dodger fans, we have a vague recollection of this incident. Ironically enough, Monday was traded to the Dodgers following the '76 season. Monday currently handles play-by-play duties for the Dodgers on the radio. On August 25, 2008, Monday was presented with an American flag flown over Valley Forge National Historical Park in honor of his 1976 rescue.




Here's the story:








* We essentially recycle this post every year. Deal with it.

Stow it! (UPDATED)



(please scroll down for update)



Once again, it's the ladies that look to be displaying the most sense in the GOP.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer came out in opposition to the “birther” movement in stronger terms than ever, saying Monday that doubts about President Barack Obama’s citizenship are leading the country toward “destruction.”

Just as birtherism has been re-energized by potential presidential candidate Donald Trump’s media blitz, questioning Obama’s birthplace, the Republican governor has moved in the opposite direction.

“It’s become such a huge distraction,” Brewer said Monday night on CNN. “I, for one — I believe that from what I have seen and after speaking with … the prior governor of Hawaii that indeed he was born in Hawaii. It’s just something that I think is leading our country down a path of destruction, and it just is not serving any good purpose.”

Last week, Brewer vetoed a bill passed by the Arizona state Legislature that would have required presidential candidates to provide documentation showing that they were born in the United States to get on the state’s presidential ballot. The bill, she said in a letter about her veto, was a “distraction” and “a bridge too far” that would have created “significant new problems while failing to do anything constructive for Arizona.”

Amen to that, sister.

We're beginning to think that Donald Trump is actually a Democratic plant. Funny how he just explodes onto the scene at the same time we lose interest in that other overseas distraction in Libya.

Those prices at the pump got you a little chapped? Fugheddaboutit - who's up for some more birtherism?


Of all the legitimate issues for which we can and do take this administration to task and this is the one that has everybody's attention right now? Congratulations, David Axelrod.

O.K. New rule: In winnowing down the field of GOP contenders (we're still not sure if we are actually going to endorse anybody, regardless) you're out if you support ethanol subsidies and now you're automatically DQed for flirtation in any way shape or form with birtherism. In fact, condemnation in the strongest terms a' la Governor Brewer wins you bonus points.

Talk about taking your eye off the ball.



(UPDATE #1): Surprise! The President held a birth certificate news conference early this morning causing us to nearly swerve off the road on our way into work.

Our first reaction was "why?" The administration has now taken off the table a perfect opportunity to paint birthers and anyone within arms-length of them as wackos.

Amazingly, the President said that the reason for holding this press conference was that the whole birther thing had become a distraction. Well, no kidding. Wasn't that the point for the administration in keeping this thing alive in the first place? Now, all the President has left for distractions is Libya and the waste, fraud and abuse hotline set up by the Justice Department to help investigate why gas prices are so high.

For a phenomena that was, ahem, birthed by Clinton Inc. during the Democratic primaries 3 - 3-1/2 years ago and had achieved gale force cultural impact thanks to the relentless pounding by Donald Trump, the ending proved to be rather unceremonious.

And proving that it was indeed time to get down to addressing and solving real issues, the President promptly left after his remarks refusing to field any questions from the press, the first being about General Patraeus moving to the CIA... you know, a real issue.

So, the President took the opportunity to make some political hay. Terrific. Now that we've got all this out of the way, how about that deficit reduction plan, Mr. President?

Rejoice...






... because it's America here, every day of the year.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

More energy "policy" lunacy




The talking points have come out for changing the conversation on why it is we have such high gas prices. Joining evil speculators and the waste, fraud and abuse hotline being set up by the Justice Department is ending subsidies for Big Oil.

B-Daddy has some thoughts, here on the subject.

Here are the two paragraphs that caught our eye as it summarizes the double-standard and hypocrisy inherent to whatever coherency their is to this administration's energy policy.


* In addition to eliminating wasteful subsidies for the oil and gas industry, we have to work toward a longer-term goal of reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil and making ourselves less vulnerable to an always-changing oil market.

* We should all be able to agree that rather than continuing to subsidize 20th century energy sources, we need to invest in 21st century energy sources. Instead of cutting funding for clean energy by 70 percent, as some in Congress have suggested, we need to make smart investments in a 21st century clean energy economy that will keep us competitive, support job creation, and help us to win the future.

Of course, you see what's going on here, right? "Subsidies" are for the oil industry, yet we "invest" in green energy. Subsidies, bad. Investments, good. Wash, rinse and repeat.

Look, you want to eliminate tax breaks and depreciation write-offs for the oil and gas industry? Fine by us but don't double down on stupid and insult our intelligence at the same time by taking this estimated $4 billion that Big Oil gets and pour it into the not-yet-ready-for-primetime green energy sector that also happens to be a mosh pit of crony capitalism and picking winners and losers.

Whether it's oil and gas, wind turbines, solar panels, choo-choo trains or corn and milk, we're not really sure what the government is doing in the subsidies business in the first place.

Video clip of the day

Here's some more of that new civility everyone is talking about...


Missourians curious as to what their higher education tax dollars are teaching the kids these day? How about a little union thug tactics 101?

Courtesy Big Government, professors Judy Ancel and David Giljam give instructions on intimidation, fear and industrial sabotage in the context of labor negotiations in a jointly-taught online course at University of Missouri- St. Louis and the University of Missouri - Kansas City.




What blows us away as we cannot wrap our head around but how does equipment lying idle or plant stoppages help the union worker in the long run? It is the revenue generated by the business that pays the salaries and benefits of the workers. If the plant is idled by sabotage or even the implied threat of sabotage then where is the revenue that will cover the new concessions that the union is seeking?

And better yet, how about when those union members start getting laid off because their company has been passed by the competition because of work stoppages and idle plant time?

But, nope... intimidation tactics, inciting riots, animal cruelty and destroying police cars are one big laugh-riot to these ass-hats.

Our tax dollars at work.

The Friday evening dump

One in a series that takes a look at unsavory news being jettisoned from Washington D.C. right in front of the weekend in the hopes that no one will notice.


Finally... an Obama supporter who wonders, "Gee, why isn't anyone calling out the Prez for what we're doing over in Libya?"

Via Radio Equalizer, here's Bill Press on Libya, Obama, Bush and glaring double-standards during his syndicated program this past Friday.






Welcome to the party, Bill.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Follower blog post of the day




Gettin' out and about and bringing it all back home.




“Part of the wisdom of the Elders is to remind the world that we actually have universal values that are accepted by every government in the world and yet they are not being implemented.”




The Khmer Rouge totally approves of this message.




A carefully ethnic and gender-balanced group of international and U.N.-style hacks, has-beens and smartest-person-in-the-room types having about as much success and making about as much sense as you would expect.

KT has the details here.

Big Media narrative fail

The L.A. Times would like you to know that things are so quiet along the Mexican border that, doggone it, our border patrol agents are having a tough time staying awake on the job.

The border fence ran right in front of Jeff Byerly's post, a straight line of steel that stretched beyond town and deep into the desert. As a U.S. Border Patrol agent on America's front line, Byerly's job was to stop anyone from scaling the barrier. Hours into his midnight shift, his stare was still fixed, but all was quiet.

He pounded energy drinks. He walked around his government vehicle. On the other side of the fence, the bars in the Mexican town of San Luis Rio Colorado closed, and only the sound of a passing car broke the silence. Byerly, 31, switched on his DVD player. Minutes later, a supervisor knocked on the window: The slapstick comedy "Johnny English" was on; Byerly was fast asleep.

Wild foot chases and dust-swirling car pursuits may be the adrenaline-pumping stuff of recruitment efforts, but agents on the U.S.-Mexico border these days have to deal with a more mundane occupational reality: the boredom of guarding a frontier where illegal crossings have dipped to record low levels.

Porous corridors along the 2,000-mile border do remain, mostly in the Tucson area, requiring constant vigilance. But beefed-up enforcement and the job-killing effects of the great recession have combined to reduce the flood of immigrants in many former hot spots to a trickle.


Let's now take a break from the narrative and check back in with reality.


The federal government’s failure to protect Americans from foreign drug cartels, human smugglers, and potential terrorists was echoed by Richard M. Stana, the Government Accountability Office’s director of homeland security and justice issues, who told the Senate Homeland Security Committee last month that the federal government has operational control of only 129 miles of the southern border, which presumably includes the extra five miles that took federal bureaucrats the last two years to negotiate.


“The difficulties encountered by the Border Patrol to gain operational control are not the result of poor management or lack of resources,” Gene Wood, former deputy chief patrol agent in the Tucson Sector, told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the Natural Resources Committee last week. “It is simply an issue of denied access” by the Interior Department - which is clearly more interested in antelope than in national security.

“Environmental policies cannot take precedent over the safety and security of all Americans and that is exactly what is occurring today,” said Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, chairman of the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands.

Rep. Bishop has introduced a bill that would prohibit Interior from using environmental regulations to prevent the Border Patrol from doing its job.

As our border with Mexico runs 1,954 miles that would be approximately 7 percent of that border of which we have control.




And as far as the environment goes...






...perhaps allowing the Border Patrol to do their job might be of some actual value to the Department of the Interior. Just a thought.

On top of it




Via Hot Air


Finally... Looks like we're going to be getting to the bottom of the cause for these high gas prices.


President Barack Obama said Thursday that the Justice Department will try to "root out" cases of fraud or manipulation in oil markets, even as Attorney General Eric Holder suggested a variety of legal reasons may be behind gasoline's surge to $4 a gallon.

"We are going to make sure that no one is taking advantage of the American people for their own short-term gain," Obama said at a town-hall style meeting at a renewable energy plant in Reno.

The national average price for a gallon of regular gasoline was $3.84 on Thursday, about 30 cents higher than a month ago and almost a dollar higher than a year ago.

Obama, decrying such levels as yet another hardship "at a time when things were already pretty tough," said Holder was forming the Financial Fraud Enforcement Working Group.

The task force will focus some of its investigation on "the role of traders and speculators" in the oil-price surge Obama said. The group will include several Cabinet department officials, federal regulators and the National Association of Attorneys General.

In Washington, Holder said he would press ahead with the investigation, even though he did not cite any current evidence of intentional manipulation of oil and gas prices or fraud.


So, it's waste, fraud and abuse, huh?


If you are skeptical as to that being the real reason, perhaps it's because you've been listening to the admonitions of another Washington power player who had this to say just short of two weeks ago:


So because all this spending is popular with both Republicans and Democrats alike, and because nobody wants to pay higher taxes, politicians are often eager to feed the impression that solving the problem is just a matter of eliminating waste and abuse – you’ll hear that phrase a lot. “We just need to eliminate waste and abuse!” The implication is that that tackling the deficit issue won’t require tough choices.

(italics, ours)








The level of unseriousness here is shocking.


We're in the very best of hands.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter 2011



Happy Easter, everybody.


We may be back later today but to be on the safe side, consider the remaining hours on this particular Sunday to be spent with family and friends.


Pax.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Greening us back to the dark ages



The newly-mandated CFL bulbs are difficult enough to dispose of let alone clean up should you break one (more on that later), it turns out the Curly Fry Lights may not even be safe to turn on.

(via Doo Doo Economics):

Energy saving light bulbs 'contain cancer causing chemicals'


Fears have been reignited about the safety of energy saving light bulbs after a group of scientists warned that they contain cancer causing chemicals.

Their report advises that the bulbs should not be left on for extended periods, particularly near someone’s head, as they emit poisonous materials when switched on.

Peter Braun, who carried out the tests at the Berlin's Alab Laboratory, said: “For such carcinogenic substances it is important they are kept as far away as possible from the human environment.”

The bulbs are already widely used in the UK following EU direction to phase out traditional incandescent lighting by the end of this year.

But the German scientists claimed that several carcinogenic chemicals and toxins were released when the environmentally-friendly compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) were switched on, including phenol, naphthalene and styrene.

Andreas Kirchner, of the Federation of German Engineers, said: “Electrical smog develops around these lamps.

“I, therefore, use them only very economically. They should not be used in unventilated areas and definitely not in the proximity of the head.”

British experts insisted that more research was needed and urged consumers not to panic.

Don't panic? That's funny because we have a different way of doing things over here, especially in California where we promptly enact carbon emissions legislation based upon a highly-dubious study authored by a hack who received his "doctorate" from a diploma mill back in New York.

So, just to be on the safe side, it appears that it is simpler to just keep the damn things turned off.



Now, while you are busy not turning on your CFL and waiting hopefully in the dark for an incandescent bulb black market to emerge and you happen to break one of your CFLs, what to do?

As a public service, BwD has provided not just the link but the full text of clean-up procedures as outlined by the federal Environmental Protection Agency:


Before Cleanup


•Have people and pets leave the room, and avoid the breakage area on the way out.
•Open a window or door to the outdoors and leave the room for 5-10 minutes.
•Shut off the central forced-air heating/air conditioning (H&AC) system, if you have one.
•Collect materials you will need to clean up the broken bulb:
◦Stiff paper or cardboard
◦Sticky tape (e.g., duct tape)
◦Damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes (for hard surfaces)
◦Glass jar with a metal lid (such as a canning jar) or a sealable plastic bag(s)


Cleanup Steps for Hard Surfaces


•Carefully scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard and place debris and paper/cardboard in a glass jar with a metal lid. If a glass jar is not available, use a sealable plastic bag. (NOTE: Since a plastic bag will not prevent the mercury vapor from escaping, remove the plastic bag(s) from the home after cleanup.)
•Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag.
•Wipe the area clean with damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes. Place the towels in the glass jar or plastic bag.
•Vacuuming of hard surfaces during cleanup is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken. [NOTE: It is possible that vacuuming could spread mercury-containing powder or mercury vapor, although available information on this problem is limited.] If vacuuming is needed to ensure removal of all broken glass, keep the following tips in mind:
◦Keep a window or door to the outdoors open;
◦Vacuum the area where the bulb was broken using the vacuum hose, if available; and
◦Remove the vacuum bag (or empty and wipe the canister) and seal the bag/vacuum debris, and any materials used to clean the vacuum, in a plastic bag.
•Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of properly.
◦Check with your local or state government about disposal requirements in your area. Some states and communities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center.
•Wash your hands with soap and water after disposing of the jars or plastic bags containing bulb debris and cleanup materials.
•Continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the H&AC system shut off, as practical, for several hours.


Cleanup Steps for Carpeting or Rugs


•Carefully scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard and place debris and paper/cardboard in a glass jar with a metal lid. If a glass jar is not available, use a sealable plastic bag. (NOTE: Since a plastic bag will not prevent the mercury vapor from escaping, remove the plastic bag(s) from the home after cleanup.)
•Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag.
•Vacuuming of carpeting or rugs during cleanup is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken. [NOTE: It is possible that vacuuming could spread mercury-containing powder or mercury vapor, although available information on this problem is limited.] If vacuuming is needed to ensure removal of all broken glass, keep the following tips in mind:

◦Keep a window or door to the outdoors open;
◦Vacuum the area where the bulb was broken using the vacuum hose, if available, and
◦Remove the vacuum bag (or empty and wipe the canister) and seal the bag/vacuum debris, and any materials used to clean the vacuum, in a plastic bag.
•Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of properly.
◦Check with your local or state government about disposal requirements in your area. Some states and communities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center.
•Wash your hands with soap and water after disposing of the jars or plastic bags containing bulb debris and cleanup materials.
•Continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the H&AC system shut off, as practical, for several hours.


Future Cleaning of Carpeting or Rugs: Air Out the Room During and After Vacuuming


•The next several times you vacuum the rug or carpet, shut off the H&AC system if you have one, close the doors to other rooms, and open a window or door to the outside before vacuuming. Change the vacuum bag after each use in this area.
•After vacuuming is completed, keep the H&AC system shut off and the window or door to the outside open, as practical, for several hours.

Wham-Bam, thank you, Ma'am!



Exit question: Is is just us or is the reality of compact fluorescent lightbulbs approaching that of ethanol in its completely economical, environmental and effectiveness counter-intuitivity?

This is apparently the week to get stuff off your chest

In keeping with the Easter Earth Day spirit, T.J. Holmes of CNN confesses his sins against Gaia or something...






"I have a number of TVs in my high house and leave them on just about all day, every day."


That's not sinful nor even wasteful (well, it is but...), that's just plain stupid. But thanks for sharing, T.J.

Radio KBwD is on the air



We were having so much Earth Day fun yesterday, we never got around to our KBwD feature that usually runs on Friday afternoon/evening.


We'll probably be stretching this out and treating you to some Earth Weekend fun but having said all that, let's get right to it.


Ladies and Gentlemen, from Woking, Surrey, England it's The Jam performing, "A Town Called Malice".



Friday, April 22, 2011

More wacky Earth Day fun

A headline and sub-headline we don't recall seeing when ol' you know who was in office:


Why You Should Love $5 Gas


Stop grousing about the numbers on the pump. All of this could be good for you and good for America.

Because, doggone it, what's more patriotic than higher food and energy prices?




And how do you say "Drill, baby, drill!" in Portugese?


Or as Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff put it, “which other country in the world has the oil reserves that Brazil has, that is not at war, that does not have an ethnic conflict, which respects contracts, has clear democratic principles and vision, is generous and in favour of peace?”

The answer to that question used to be pretty easy but, hell, maybe she's got a point.

Urban Dictionary word of the day

Googleheimer's


The condition where you think of something you want to Google, but by the time you get to your computer, you have forgotten what it was. Very prevalent in the 420 community.


I've got Googleheimer's so bad that between the garage and the office, I forgot what I was going to look up.

Video clip of the day

It's Earth Day, everybody and in order to best celebrate Mother Gaia, the ultimate MILF, we're presenting the video below that salutes some of the greatest fear-mongering, doomsaying and chicken-littling of the past 40 years and the people behind them.


From ReasonTV, it's "The Top 5 Environmental Disasters That Didn't Happen"





Words cannot describe how giddy we are that Paul Ehrlich, whom we actually remember from grade school some 35 years ago when he was trying to scare our 3rd grade britches off, takes the top prize for his book Population Bomb and his utterly failed Malthusian Famine prediction.

Congratulations, Paul!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Escalation




The latest kinetic in our unauthorized adventure in Libya.


President Barack Obama has approved the use of armed drones in Libya, authorizing U.S. airstrikes on ground forces for the first time since America turned control of the operation over to NATO on April 4.

It also is the first time that drones will be used for airstrikes since the conflict began on March 19, although they have routinely been flying surveillance missions, Defense Secretary Robert Gates told reporters at a Pentagon briefing Thursday.

He said the U.S. will provide up to two 24-hour combat air patrols each day by the unmanned Predators.

The Commander-in-Chief does love him his drones, doesn't he?

If he didn't want to get ripped by our European allies for backing out completely but he remains committed to not committing boots on the ground, we suppose this was the next logical step in this stalemate.

Again, this is all about appearances and not actual results. If we can appear to be acting in a multi-lateral manner without doing too much heavy lifting and Congress doesn't make too much of a stink of it then that's just the way it's going to be.

But given the way this whole thing has played out, when we heard about this decision, we couldn't help but think if there were going to be some crappy jobs numbers report or another bummer Standard and Poor's-like announcement coming out tomorrow.

MAXED OUT: Delirious!




It's a Wednesday Thursday afternoon, so let's get to it, shall we?




Welcome back to the Thunder Dome my gaggle of guzzlers, and boy are you in for a treat, for today I return to my Top 10 favorite beers. So far I have introduced you to Hitachino’s Strong Belgian Style Brown Ale aged in sake barrels, the XH, as well as Jolly Pumpkin’s Artisan Golden Ale aged in oak barrels, the Oro de Calabaza. No barrel aging is necessary for this beauty, as Delirium Tremmens (which I have talked briefly about before) is a tried and true, perfect example of a Belgian Tripel.

So, do you all remember what the difference between a Simple, Dubbel, Tripel, and a Quadrupel? Like I always say, of course you do, you’re all so smart! It’s the amount of malts that the brewers throw into the batch. While Delirium is technically a Belgian Strong Pale Ale, I think that’s a dump truck full of horse apples. Delirium is a perfectly shining example of a Belgian-style Tripel in this lowly barkeep’s humble opinion. If you look at what makes a Tripel - color, consistency, flavor, ABV and IBUs - Delirium meets all of the requirements to a T.

I know some of you are beer-o-philes and some of you couldn’t tell me the difference between a Stout and a Lager (which I hope I have helped to remedy in some small way) but have any of you had a beer that tingles your tongue? I mean like a 9 volt battery on the tongue kinda tingle? I know that this may not sound like a particularly delightful experience but when it’s in the form of coriander, slight cinnamon, nutmeg and wonderfulness, I can tell you, it’s something else. Even the smell is rich with spice, tingling your nose hairs to the point of bliss. The color is a beautiful golden with about three to four streams of bubbles that grace the sides of your tulip shaped glass in perfect synchronicity. And at 8.5% ABV, it does the trick my lovelies… it does the trick.

Delirium is brewed by the Brouwerij Huyghe (Dutch for Huyghe Brewery) in Melle, Belgium which is located on one of the oldest brewery sites in the entire world, with the first brewery on that site coming to fruition in 1654. As some of you may know, Belgium is rich in the tradition of brewing and beer is still one of the country's primary forms of export. I have a few friends that have actually been to The Huyghe’s Brew Pub in Belgium, the Delirium CafĂ©, and with over 1,000 beers on draft and in bottle, it still holds the world record for the most beers in a single location. Yes, I will be going there in September of 2012. Be jealous.

Side note: Grab a fillet of salmon, some jasmine rice, broccoli and a small mixed green salad, a four pack of these bad boys and you have yourself a perfect night in front of the fire with a special someone. It’s a guarantee, and you’re welcome. This is a gateway beer as many that tend to drink wine will still enjoy this tasty treat. Let me repeat, you’re welcome.

Well, I am going to go have another Delirium Tremmens, so I’m off like a prom dress. Thanks for stopping by and please feel free to shoot me ideas for topics, comment or ask questions in the comment section below, on Facebook or at maxamilliondollars@gmail.com.

Until the next time my beer loving brethren, have a beer for me.

Great moments in the history of the ruling class vs. the country class




Alternate blog post title: "Great moments in the history of the ruling class and their miserable sock puppet mascots vs. country class.



Drive behind the Geffen Contemporary, an art museum in downtown Los Angeles, and you will notice that it has painted over the graffiti scrawled on its back wall. Ordinarily, that wouldn’t be surprising; the Geffen’s neighbors also maintain constant vigilance against graffiti vandalism. But beginning in April, the Geffen—a satellite of L.A.’s Museum of Contemporary Art—will host what MOCA proudly bills as America’s first major museum survey of “street art,” a euphemism for graffiti. Graffiti, it turns out, is something that MOCA celebrates only on other people’s property, not on its own.



MOCA's (Museum of Contemporary Art) board of directors and patrons read like a who's-who of Los Angeles's power elite so the truly maddening and disgusting thing about this is that graffiti affects disproportionately the citizens in working-class and poor neighborhoods - the very people these elites claim to champion.

As one would expect, the concepts of property rights and anti-social behavior are rationalized by the benefactors (again, the soft bigotry of low expectations held by the liberal-Left rears its ugly head) and explained away in contradictory leftist tropes by the "artists" themselves who will, naturally, spring at the opportunity to turn a buck for their "art".

As ones who continue to struggle against the blight-inducing effects of graffiti in our own neighborhood, we find MOCAs celebration of graffiti to be insulting and enraging.

And now for the movie review we've all been waiting for...



P.J. O'Rourke weighs in on Atlas Shrugged and though he didn't particularly care for it, he isn't going to pan it, either.

“Atlas Shrugged–Part I” has to be praised just for existing, for keeping the premise available. Perhaps Hollywood progressives — inveterate takers — will take it. Many another movie could be made about a labor action by those who perform life’s actual labors. Maybe it’s a slacker comedy where Zach Galifianakis shaves, loses weight and refuses to speak in non sequiturs. Maybe it’s a sci-fi thriller where the Internet has gone on strike and mankind must face a post-apocalyptic world without Twitter. Or maybe it’s a horror film set at my house, “Wife on Strike!”


Though we have yet to see the film, O'Rourke's point is well taken. The one about the mere existence of Atlas Shrugged, the movie, that is.

When we heard the buzz a few years ago that Angelina Jolie was rumored to play Dagny Taggart, we thought there was no way in hell that she'd take the part because there was no way in hell that movie was ever going to get made. But here we are, in the year of our Lord, 2011 and Atlas Shrugged is a god-forsaken multi-plex reality.

O'Rourke obviously pens our sentiments better than we as win, lose or draw, how can you not admire a movie and the folks who made it for running directly counter to the over-bearing maternalistic and collectivist impulses of Hollywood and the culture of this nation's political class, in general?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Follower blog post of the day

We've been slacking of late on getting out on the interwebs and seeing what our much-appreciated followers have been up to.


That was the end stage of socialist compassion. That was what "collapse the country’s pensions system" looked like once it had happened. There was nothing kind or charitable about it and the only thing it's proponents had left was their smug self-assurance that they had been "compassionate."


Socialists are notoriously bad at math. Always have been and because it's engrained in their DNA, they probably always will be. Too bad because math wins. Math always wins.


KT talks more about math and true compassion here.

Tales from Bailout Nation (cont.)




Like rats leaving a sinking ship...


The U.S. government plans to sell a significant share of its remaining stake in General Motors Co. this summer despite the disappointing performance of the auto maker's stock, people familiar with the matter said.

A sale within the next several months would almost certainly mean U.S. taxpayers will take a loss on their $50 billion rescue of the Detroit auto maker in 2009.

To break even, the U.S. Treasury would need to sell its remaining stake—about 500 million shares—at $53 apiece. GM closed off 27 cents a share at $29.97 in 4 p.m. trading Monday on the New York Stock Exchange, hitting a new low since its $33-a-share November initial public offering.

At current share prices, the American tax-payer would take an $11 billion dollar loss if the remaining government-owned shares were put up for sale today.

So, why are the feds so eager to dump this turkey?

Government officials are willing to take the loss because the Obama administration would like to sever its last ties to the auto maker, the people familiar with the matter said. A summer sale makes it more likely Treasury could sell all of its stake in GM by year's end, avoiding a potentially controversial sale in the 2012 presidential election year.

A summer sale when, hopefully, no one is paying attention. And good to know the calculus for selling GM stock is now purely political instead of based-upon any economic rationale. Perhaps, Team O can divert some of their campaign warchest funds to this IPO because, at this point, they really would serve the same purpose.

So, if you are scoring at home you have a) a bankruptcy cramdown where unions were shoved to the head of the line before secured creditors, b) a pack of blatant public lies regarding the payback of the TARP loan, c) a $9 billion loss on the first IPO last November and now this... a massive stock dump in order to clear the books ahead of the 2012 presidential elections.

Yep, this public-private partnership has been a smashing success all the way around.


Just to repeat... we will never... never buy a GM product for as long as we live.

More government = more violence



Bad for your health in more ways than you may realize.



As predictably as the Sun rises in the East, cash-strapped states who are strangling the golden goose have found that slippery golden goose has gone underground.


Larry Penninger, acting director of the tobacco diversion unit of theBureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), says investigations and prosecutions involving tobacco trafficking have been increasing as smugglers flood high-tax states with cigarettes from low-tax states.

From 2007 to last year, 27 states raised their cigarette taxes, according to Michigan’s Mackinac Center for Public Policy, which closely tracks tobacco tax rates across the country. Mackinac describes tobacco smuggling as an “unintended consequence of high cigarette taxes.”


There is so much illicit money to be made, Penninger says, that some drug and weapon trafficking organizations are adding tobacco to their product lines to boost profits. For example, in low-tax states such as Virginia, where cigarettes cost about $4.50 a pack, smugglers can sell a truckload (typically 800 cases) in New York at $13 a pack. New York is the highest tobacco taxing jurisdiction in the country.

Smuggling costs states and the federal government about $5 billion, according to U.S. government estimates. “Everybody out there (involved in illegal trafficking operations) is tapping into tobacco,’’ Penninger says.
(italics, ours)

Bless their hearts... it's as if Mackinac stumbled, quite accidentally, upon this phenomena.

Seriously, just what did the states think was going to happen when they started jacking up the price of cigarettes via higher taxes?

The statist just doesn't get it - he thinks that if you add a 75 cent sin tax on a pack of cigarettes, he is going to get that extra 75 cents x the amount of packs of cigarettes sold before that tax was added. It just doesn't work that way. Of course, people will seek the cheaper alternative and if that means purchasing cigarettes that were brought over state lines, that is exactly what they are going to do.

This is just a perfect illustration of how taxes alter people's behavior.

Terrific. Now states are out that projected revenue putting themselves in an even deeper whole and the feds have yet another potentially violent crime product they have to deal with all because of extremely short-sighted policy made by state law-makers that are economic dunces and who cannot see beyond their own noses as to the ill-effects down the immediate road brought about by their legislation.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

There's just something we've got to get off our chest

The following is a very strongly-worded and passionate editorial regarding pending legislation in California where the teaching of gay history would be mandatory in the state's public schools. It's something we've chewed on, processed and given a great deal of thought as we don't want to be accused of blogging-while-angry. As such, with this blog post, it is not our intent to anger or offend anybody but to simply express some firm convictions with respect to this subject. Here goes:











Wait. They're still teaching history in California's public schools? Wow.

We suppose this would be one way to close the deficit




We're almost positive the following has neglected to mention some sort of detail that would justify exactly why this is, but generally speaking, we think this is a pretty good leading indicator of the level of seriousness our state elders possess when it comes to getting California's house in order.

On a straight party-line vote California lawmakers gave the green light for welfare recipients to purchase alcohol and tobacco products using taxpayer money. The insanity in the Golden State continues despite the state’s $23 billion deficit and double-digit unemployment.

Recently California changed the way it disperses food stamps. In an effort to take the stigma away from food stamps the state issues welfare beneficiaries with an Electronic Benefits Card which look and work like an ATM card.

The Golden State doles out welfare benefits through the CalWORKS program. In the past welfare recipients were not allowed to buy beer and cigarettes, but compassionate state lawmakers decided it wasn’t fair to stop TAXPAYER money from being used to subsidize non-essential bad habits.

“You would think a simple common sense reform like trying to make sure taxpayer money is not used for the purchase of alcohol and tobacco would find bi-partisan support,” said GOP State Senator Bob Dutton.

Mr. Dutton should know better than to use "common sense" when referencing Sacramento politics.

California shells out $100 million a year to the 600,000 families that are on the dole. But far from lunacy as the primary motivating factor in allowing the poor and/or unemployed to get likker'd-up, we think it may be sheer pragmatism as the Sacramento pols hope to get as much of that money back in the form of revenue from the heavily-taxed tobacco and alcohol products that are sold as a result of this.


Creating a businees-friendly climate? Easing back on excessive regulation? Uh-uh, that's just not the Cali way, man.

Closing the state budget deficit via alcoholism and lung cancer inflicted upon the poor.


Now we're talkin'!

Here's some more of that new civility everyone is talking about

A tea party rally in Madison, Wisconsin over the weekend and pro-union counter-protesters booing during the national anthem?





To be all fair and balanced, here's Ann Althouse who has been doing great work covering all that has been happening on the ground in Madison over the past couple of months:

I'm seeing some assertions about this on blogs and in YouTube videos, and it's wrong if not unfair and deceptive. I don't have my own video, because I mishandled the button on my camera, but I was right behind the Tea Party crowd amid anti-Tea Party protesters who were making a lot of noise trying to drown out whatever was coming from the podium. They were, in fact, succeeding in their purpose so well that they could not hear when the national anthem began.

I started walking forward and it took a while for me to recognize the anthem. My observation was that those who could hear it were not booing. The "rockets red glare" line seemed louder, and there was a noticeable hushing that extended back into the anti-Tea Party areas of the crowd.


Perhaps. In the video, however, we're hearing plenty of the national anthem, loud and clear, as well as plenty of booing and cat calls until the towards the end of the anthem when the pro-union types seem to get a clue.




Oh, and check this out (via Lee Stranahan):





That's not "I strongly object to your political values and principles" - that shrieking, caterwauling, that ululating... that's just pure hatred.


But it's all good because Paul Krugman has now come out and said that being uncivil is like patriotic or something. Good to know because whatever thin veneer of post-partisanship still claimed by the back-bencher currently residing in the White House, the same post-partisanship he campaigned upon, has officially been laid to rest by the grand poobah of statist punditry.

We're glad it's over. All that new civility balderdash was really crimping our style.

Shruggin'

Timing is everything...


When copies of Atlas Shrugged started flying off the shelf at the outset of Bailout Nation, there was buzz that a film adaptation of the book would soon follow. That time is now as it opened this past weekend, appropriately right before the day taxes are due.

And how appropriate as Freedom Works presents this mash-up of scenes from the movie intermixed with recent proclamations from our overseers regarding just how it is they felt about our money, property and freedom.






Shane was the first of the SLOBs (San Diego Local Order of Bloggers) to see the movie and his review can be found, here.


Shane was also kind enough to list the theaters in the San Diego area at which the movie is playing and show times, here.


After being initially skeptical about going to see the movie, we think we're all in and we'll probably hit it up this weekend.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Radio KBwD is on the air: the tax day edition



And for a night cap...



In the past, we've always played The Beatles' "Tax Man" for obvious reasons but this time we thought we'd mix it up a little and play a just-as-appropriate tune concerning the erosion of our liberties and freedoms.

Local legends, The Beat Farmers, absolutely killed with this song live as they were huge fans of the band.

Ladies and Gentlemen, from England, its The Kinks displaying the conservative chops of their fellow countryman, Sir Edmund Burke, and performing "20th Century Man."



"I was born in a welfare state

Ruled by bureaucracy

Controlled by civil servants

And people dressed in grey

Got no privacy, got no liberty

Cos the twentieth century people

Took it all away from me."



A few words regarding the statists' favorite day of the year





Some tax day red meat for you featuring our favorite Obama regime cabinet member: that miserable hack that runs the Justice Department.


The hits, they just keep on coming...


US Attorney General Eric Holder and his brother failed to pay the property taxes on their childhood home in Queens, which they inherited last August after their mother died, The Post has learned.

And because their ailing mom, Miriam, was already behind on two quarterly tax bills when she succumbed to illness on Aug. 13, the charges went unpaid for more than a year -- growing to $4,146.

It wasn't until The Post confronted Holder last week about the delinquency that he and younger brother William Holder finally paid up Friday, including $73.14 in interest.

The siblings "weren't aware of the initial missed payments, which happened in the last months of their mother's life when she was battling illness," said a Holder spokesman.

The subsequent unpaid bills "occurred during a time period in which the disposition of the estate is still being resolved," said Department of Justice spokesman Matthew Miller.

With the egg-in-the-face embarrasment caused by Tom Daschle and then the Treasury head, Timothy Geithner, over unpaid taxes, wouldn't it be reasonable to assume that every other top Obama aide, advisor and cabinet member might've paused for a moment and said, "You know, perhaps I should take a round turn on my own tax situation to save the boss anymore grief"? Would it really be expecting too much to have that rhetorical conversation?

Then again, it's become blatantly obvious why it's so easy for the liberal-Left to talk about raising taxes on "the rich" - paying taxes is for chumps.



But a little bit more on the President's, after extending the Bush-era tax cuts at the end of last year, new found vigor in wanting to raise the tax rate for those making over $250,000 in order to close the budget deficit or something.

It has never been adequately explained to us how taking money out of the private sector, out of the hands of those job-creators and wealth generators - you know, the rich - and putting it into the public sector, into the hands of the government, is going to do a better at job creation and wealth generating. No one has because it's all a big fat lie. This isn't taxing the the rich to close the deficit, this is about envy and class warfare, pure and simple.

You can dress up that pig any way you want with the fineries of "paying their fair share", "social justice" and even the pathetically lame "paying taxes is patriotic" (paying taxes is not patriotic, it's the law) but at the end of the day, it all amounts to income redistribution. Taking away wealth from the producers in society and giving to those who don't even pay personal income tax for the services we all use. Does that sound "fair" to you?

Video clip of the day

Alternate title: "How to eat your Smart phone"


Via W.C. Varones

We've really enjoyed this series of mono-toned cartoons breaking down the economic news of the day and we hope you will also.





Is it just us or does it seem the theme of crony capitalism, in some shape or form, runs through all that ails our economy?

Rejoice...!






... because it's America here, every day of the year.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Friday evening dump

One in a series that takes a look at some unsavory news being jettisoned from D.C. right before the weekend in the hopes that no one will notice.




Do you remember when they told us that if we voted for McCain it would mean 4 more years of signing statements that violated the will of Congress and the law? Well, they were right.



No Czar left behind!



In a statement issued Friday night, President Obama took issue with some provisions in the budget bill – and in one case simply says he will not abide by it.

Last week the White House and congressional Democrats and Republicans were involved in intense negotiations over not only the size of the budget for the remainder of the FY2011 budget, and spending cuts within that budget, but also several GOP “riders,” or policy provisions attached to the bill.

One rider – Section 2262 -- de-funds certain White House adviser positions – or “czars.” The president in his signing statement declares that he will not abide by it.

“The President has well-established authority to supervise and oversee the executive branch, and to obtain advice in furtherance of this supervisory authority,” he wrote. “The President also has the prerogative to obtain advice that will assist him in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities, and do so not only from executive branch officials and employees outside the White House, but also from advisers within it. Legislative efforts that significantly impede the President's ability to exercise his supervisory and coordinating authorities or to obtain the views of the appropriate senior advisers violate the separation of powers by undermining the President's ability to exercise his constitutional responsibilities and take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”


Or as Jack Tapper helpfully summarizes: We know what you want that provision in the law to do but we don't think it's constitutional and more importantly we really don't feel like abiding by it. Czars are, like, constitutional.



It's been quite a run for the Prez these past 2-3 weeks: keeping Gitmo open for business, formalizing open-ended detentions of suspected terrorists, removing us from that quagmire in Libya and now continuing a policy of his predecessor of which Obama the candidate had this to say:

the “problem” with the Bush administration “is that it has attached signing statements to legislation in an effort to change the meaning of the legislation, to avoid enforcing certain provisions of the legislation that the President does not like, and to raise implausible or dubious constitutional objections to the legislation.”

The back bencher said at the time, as President, he would not use signing statements.

We should be hearing the howls of outrage and betrayal from his base any minute now.

Any minute....