Monday, February 28, 2011

Not much is being said from the Obama Administration after a pirate attack on an American yacht left 4 Americans dead.

Now, I don't think we need as big a military budget as we have, and certainly not spending the money on the things we spend money on, but when it comes to American might, that is the point.

It was once said that a Roman citizen could walk from one end of the Roman Empire to the other without fear of molestation, because should a Roman citizen be accosted, woe be unto the criminal for the entire might of the Roman Army would come crashing down on their head. When outsides could harass Roman Citizens, it was the beginning of the end of the Roman Empire.

Much could be said about America under Obama. People don't respect Americans anymore and not because Americans aren't worthy of respect, but because no one fears that President Obama would send a SEAL Team or Delta Force to come knocking on the door of the pirates. Swift reaction, immediate consequences and deadly results will ensure that Americans can travel abroad without fear. The fact that we hear nothing is simply a sign that the Obama Administration does not believe in the superiority of America.

Friday, February 18, 2011


From the so stupid you can't make this up files

Woman Protests Cleavage By Showing Her Own Breasts

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Perry the Platypus Would Eat Arthur and Binky for Lunch

Instapundit notes that PBS is politicizing the cartoon character Arthur, the oversized aardvark. An Instapundit reader responds:

Having 8 year old triplets, I have watched my share of children’s programing. And for the record, Phineas and Ferb kick Arthur’s ass. The theme of the show is that kids can accomplish cool things with quiet confidence. The stars are NEVER mean, and they constantly foil their controlling would be nanny of a big sister. Oh, and the music is killer.

All the product of two guys pitching the idea for 16 years before production and without a nickel of tax payer assistance.

Perry the Platypus would eat Arthur and Binky for lunch. Don’t get me started on DW.

I couldn't agree more--Phineas and Ferb is my absolute favorite animated show after the Simpsons. These two kids and the entire show are brilliant. I can't say enough about the mindset of P & F, the notion that they can do anything they want. Even the so-called bully in the show is a good friend to "his nerd." Say waht you want, P&F is a great show and it is not even subsidized.

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Obamanomics 101: Borrowing to pay debt isn’t debt-debt

I love this story,Obamanomics 101: Borrowing to pay debt isn’t debt-debt. So what is it? White House Press Secretary Jay Carney seems to think that it is something else--one of those "investments" the President is always talking about.

ABC's Jake Tapper needs a medal for this question.
TAPPER: If I borrow money from you — to pay — to pay off the interest for -

CARNEY: You may owe me.

TAPPER: Ten-year rule. If I borrow money from you to pay off the interest for the debt I owe to Geoff, am I not adding to my debt?

CARNEY: Well, without dealing with hypotheticals, why don’t you — why don’t you –

TAPPER: The president seems to think that that borrowing money to pay the interest on the debt is not adding to the debt. I don’t understand that math.

I don't understand it either. If I borrow money from a bank to pay off my credit card interest, I have not eliminated the debt that was generating the interest and I have added to my debt. I still owe the same amount in debt to the credit cards--and have now added more debt AND interest to my burden. I have increased my debt load. How is it the government is different than me? That is why people are getting fed up with government--this Administration thinks that the economic realities that apply to everyday life don't apply to them. They are wrong and they are screwing over my kids and grandkids.

But the thing that really got me was this one: The Obama Administration is still blaming President Bush. From Carney:
Well, the debt is — has been created over a number of years, as you know. And we came in here with an economic crisis, the likes of which, I daresay, I think nobody in this room has ever seen, and which threatened to head straight into a depression if we didn’t act.

But I also remind you that we inherited, when this administration came into office, this president came into office, an enormous debt that had been piled up in the previous eight years. And that is part of the problem. And the interest that you’re talking about is on that debt as well.
It seems like the default position for any Obama Administration spokesman in trouble is to blame President Bush. Note to Mr. Carney--your boss has been in office for over two years--time for him to start owning up to things. The Obama Administration is like a five year old--blaming someone else for the messes. The trouble is, a five year old eventually can be forced to admit their mistakes--I just don't see it from this Administration. God forbid Obama gets another term, but I can see Obama in December 2016 still blaming President Bush for all that's wrong in the country.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Surf's Up

Well, it's time for "feminists" to break out their annual, Bash Sports Illustrated columns as the sports mag's annual Swimsuit Issue is hitting the newstands now.  The Daily Caller looks back at some recent cover photos.  I must say it is nice to look at, but I have to say that some of the female athletes in the ESPN the Body Issue are just as delightful to look at.

Lots of talk today about President Obama's budget and everyone is talking about the fact that the debt is as much as the GDP.  But these charts from Doug Ross showing just how bad the budget picture under President Obama really is, should also get news.

As the budget battle gets started in force, the seemingly annual issue of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Public Radio gets started.  Jill Lawrence, an admitted fan of CPB and NPR, thinks that it is time to phase them out of the federal budget.  I couldn't agree more, largely because the reason for CPB and NPR no longer exist.  the entities were created at a time when television and radio options were very small.  There is no longer a need for it.

Onto something else, there are some doctors who require a man to get his wife's consent to get a vasectomy.  Huh?  How does that work on a legal basis?

Finally, as a veteran, and one who voted in two elections while in the service, the voting rights of overseas service members and civilians concerns me.  Today there was testimony about the Department of Justice's actions to protect (or not protect) the voting rights of our overseas citizens.
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New drilling method opens vast oil fields in US

New drilling method opens vast oil fields in US

Cool on the technology front, but you can rest assured that the environmentalists are going to get all up in arms and prevent this kind of oil field recovery.

States Rely More and More on Federal Funds

Even as states attempt to assert more political independence from the federal government (or at least some states are), the fact is that states are becoming more and more dependent upon federal funds for their own budgets. The  Mercatus Center has a great chart showing how, in the past 22 years, states have come to rely more on federal funds.

While political independence is all well and good, how can a state be an sovereign entity in our federal system if it relies so heavily upon monies from the federal government?

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Monday, February 14, 2011

ObamaCare has so Many Myths, It's Hard to Know Where to Begin

Cory L. Andrews started with the litigation side of matters, debunking the leading Obamacare litigation myths:

My favorite:

Myth #5: “Judge Vinson declared not just the individual mandate, but the entire ObamaCare law unconstitutional. That shows how radical he is.”This is the myth that will not die. Following Judge Vinson’s ruling in Florida, defenders of ObamaCare seized on the supposed “fact” that he declared the entire law unconstitutional as further evidence that Vinson was an unhinged jurist whose ruling placed him “outside the mainstream.”
Similar reports followed from virtually every media outlet in the country (see herehere, and here). But nowhere did Judge Vinson hold that the entire law was unconstitutional. Rather, he found that only the individual mandate was unconstitutional; yet, because Congress hadn’t bothered to include a severability clause, the entire law was void.
This is an important distinction. Other than the individual mandate, Judge Vinson impugned no portion of ObamaCare on constitutional grounds, nor did he overstep his judicial duty.

Check it out. (Links in original)

Judge Vinson's decision was handcuffed upon him by Congress' failure to include a severability clause so that even if Judge Vinson found every other provision constitutional, the fact that one feature is unconstitutional invalidates the whole 2200 page think.

Read more at the Washington Examiner:

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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Betsy's Page: Are waivers from Obamacare constitutional?

Betsy Newmark brings to the fore an interesting argument about the Obamacare waivers that are being handed out like Valentine's Day candy. Pointing to a an article by Columbia Law School professor Philip Hamburger,  Newmark notes that not very many people are questioning whether the waivers themselves are permissible.

Professor Hamburger writes:
More seriously, it raises questions about whether we live under a government of laws. Congress can pass statutes that apply to some businesses and not others, but once a law has passed — and therefore is binding — how can the executive branch relieve some Americans of their obligation to obey it? 
The dangers of inequity are obvious. Will only corporations and unions get waivers, or can individuals also get them? For example, if a family physician feels financial pressure under the health-care law to fire one of his employees, will he get a waiver to avoid adding to unemployment? 
Indeed, can even a small corporation get a waiver? Small businesses provide most new jobs, but the answer is obvious: Waivers are mostly, if not entirely, for politically significant businesses and unions that get the special attention of HHS or the White House. The rest of us must obey the laws. 

The dangers of inequity are real because of the discretion inherent in the waivers themselves.  Employers and unions can apply for the waiver (which in and of itself is an expensive proposition) and the Obama Administration through the department of Health and Human Services can then determine whether the waiver should be granted.  Jonathan Adler questions whether, as Prof. Hamburger asserts, the waivers themselves are unconstitutional?
An argument that any executive waiver authority is unconstitutional is a hard sell, particularly given the extent to which Congress may delegate legislative-like authority.   But the concerns that motivate such arguments, particularly that such power is prone to abuse and can undermine the rule of law, are serious.  What to do?  I think such concerns can be addressed through the creation of administrative procedures designed to ensure greater transparency, consistency, and accountability.
Adler brings up the best argument regarding the waivers themselves.  What is unclear is what are the criteria for the granting or denying a waiver?  As Adler pointed out, waivers are not uncommon in the executive branch, but what those waiver provisions include, for example with the Federal Communications Commission,  is a lengthy procedure, including notice and comment periods. Such provisions, Adler contends, allow for a clearer judicial review if that becomes necessary.  Such features are absent in the health care waiver process.

But returning to Betsy Newmark, there is a practical question,

There definitely seems to be something fishy about members of the executive branch to have the power to pick and choose whom a given law should apply to. Take the question away from Obamacare and imagine that it was some other law such as the Civil Rights Act and businesses argued that they could not afford to implement the law. Can you imagine the uproar if any presidential administration tried to pick out which organizations would get waivers from the law? Or pick any law that imposes some sort of burden on organizations - collecting payroll taxes, paying the minimum wage, or following environmental regulations? 

The greater problem with the healthcare waiver provisions is the lack of foresight exhibited by Congress.  They clearly recognized that there maybe problems, hence the waiver provision themselves.  Congress also stretched compliance out a fair distance, which seems admirable, but the confluence of the two means that a great many companies and unions, are failing to take an adequate effort at compliance rather than simply going for the waiver.  This is not an unreasonable position to take for the party seeking the waiver.  Getting the waiver now means they don't have to expend the efforts to comply first and then seek the waiver on the expedited basis.  So the economic rationale makes sense.

Congress is generally very bad at legislating for the future and makes serious mistakes when trying to legislate future behavior, particularly economic behavior.  So given their very poor track record, being a bit more deliberative would have gone a long way to preventing the problems we see today.

What doesn't make sense is that Congress allowed the waivers so far in advance (three and four years) before compliance was mandated.  What also seems odd is the criteria that Congress laid out to be considered for a waiver were particularly fuzzy.  Impact on unemployment seems particularly bad.  A businessman just needs to argue that changing the healthcare plan will lead to unemployment?  Given that there are so many factors lead to unemployment it seems difficult to understand.

Still, it is a good question to ask, is it proper for Congress to delegate the waiver activity?  Yes, I believe it is. Do I think it is unconstitutional to operate that waiver program without well-defined criteria issued by Congress?  Yes, because Congress is abdicating its responsibility?

To ask the question differently?  Would a Democratic Congress have delegated the waiver authority under ObamaCare to a Republican Presidency?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Military May Be the Most "Democratic" Egyptian Institution

The historic and fascinating events unfolding in Egypt, the birth of more freeedom and perhaps even a fledgling democracy created not by an outside agent, but through internal pressure, are things to behold.  What has been more impressive has been the role of the military, one of the most respected institutions in that country.  The military has been a model of professionalism in a region of the world where the military is often as corrupt as the civilian leadership.  Instead of cracking down violently on protesters, the military did what they should do, make sure everyone is safe and otherwise stay out of the way.  In many way, the professional Egyptian military may be the most democratic institution in that nation in transition.

Of course, no military is in any way a "democratic" institution in that there is very much a top-down command style that cannot and does not tolerate dissent toward orders.  But the manner in which the Egyptian military leadership, both its office corps and its non-commissioned officers, are trained--through America and other Western nations, is an important factor in a nation that is inherently unstable right now. 

One of the most fascinating aspects of the events in Egypt has been the military--who appears to have if not cooperated in the protests at least approved of them in many ways, both express and tacit.  Such participation may have to do largely with the manner in which the Egyptian officer corps is trained--in America. 

America’s best hope for democracy in Egypt and the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak may not be the protesters in the streets. It could be mid-level officers in Egypt’s Army.

Thousands of them have received official training and education in the United States, where they were exposed to the values of a democratic society, such as human rights and civilian rule over the military.
That last is an important relation that is important at this critical juncture.  Civilian control of the military is a facet of American government and military that we often don't think of as particularly important, given that it has been a hallmark of our political system since the Declaration of Independence.  But such a feature is not the norm outside of modern democratic states.  But Egypt, despite its trappings under Hosni Mubarak, was not a democracy.  Yet the Egyptian officer corps and its senior non-commissioned officers have been trained, through the deep exposure to the American political-military relationship, to accept the notion of civilian control of the military--a true feature of a western democracy and one that is part and parcel of the mindset among the Egyptian military--I hope.

Combined with strict but orderly control of the junior enlisted personnel, the middle grade officers and non-coms have the respect of the people AND control of the military hardward that could be used to brutally put down a protest that might scare senior leadership.  The combination of control and training to accept civilian authority holds the best hope for a peaceful transition to true democracy.  The fears of a take over by the Muslim Brotherhood is real and should not be discounted, but given the respect that the Egyptian people have for the military might lead some of those middle grade officers to run for elective office and carry the discipline they have learned (and earned) into the civilan leadership side. 

Having been trained through formal American contacts and the informal contacts that result with American officers, The Egyptian military has the most exposure of any facet of Egypian society to the practical functioning of a Democracy.  The training may be the best hope for a true Democracy in the Muslim world. 

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Friday, February 11, 2011

Surf's Up

There is a great buzz about James Clapper (Clap on! Clap off!) who's recent testimony is getting savaged. Andrew McCarthy of National Review Online couches in bianary form: There’s Willful Blindness, and Then There’s Willful Stupidity. Judith Levy summarizes about Clapper's testimony:
There are two possibilities, and they're both appalling. One is that Clapper knew everything he was saying was a gross distortion of reality but said it anyway, thereby deliberately misleading the American people and giving aid and comfort to a group whose interests are completely antithetical to those of the United States. The other is that Clapper is genuinely ignorant of the agenda of the Muslim Brotherhood, a thought that is just about as unnerving as can be imagined.
I get that Egypt has been a fluid situation, but when the Director of Intelligence gets something wrong that is publicly and provably wrong, what does that say about of government. We aren't talking about blowing a prediction about what Mubarak would do, we are talking about the characterization as secular an organization who has publicly proclaimed a non-secular foundation.

More government incompetence: the IRS cannot get the Earned Income Tax Credit right and actually fails 1 out of 4 times. Simply criminal.
The IRS continues to report that 23% - 28% of EITC payments are issued improperly each year. In Fiscal Year 2009, this equated to $11 billion to $13 billion in EITC improper payments.
Now the question becomes, why can't they fix that?

One of Prof. Don Boudreaux's almost patented letters to the New York Times takes on an interesting note, the Supreme Court in the New Deal Era effectively amended the Constitution in an improper manner. The note is short, but certainly on point.

Of course there is much praise for the happenings in Egypt and I will have a more positive outlook on things in a later post--my thinking spawned by this post from Ann Althouse.

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Death Knell For Multiculturalism?

Power Line quotes French President Nicolas Sarkozy:

French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Thursday declared that multiculturalism had failed, joining a growing number of world leaders or ex-leaders who have condemned it.

"We have been too concerned about the identity of the person who was arriving and not enough about the identity of the country that was receiving him," he said in a television interview in which he declared the concept a "failure."

Identity politics waning in Europe but still strong in this country.

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Nice: IRS is adding to Deficit.

TaxProf Blog: TIGTA: The IRS Pays $12 Billion/Year in Phony EITC Claims -- A 25% Error Rate

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Front-Row Seat to Revolution

Tulane University - Front-Row Seat to Revolution An account from an American student in Cairo.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Political "Scandal" Du Jour--Elected Official Often Have a Past

I will admit, until today I had never hear of Tennessee State Rep. Julia Hurley and normally wouldn't give a toss about a freshman, 29-year-old state legislator in a state where I don't live and so far as I know, probably won't live anytime soon. But apparently, there is a brouhaha because she once worked at Hooter's. Ohh-the horror!.

Now, I find this particularly funny because about a month and a half ago, I posted a bit on the National Organization for Women's new crusade against Hooters. Hooters has built a great business on not particularly great food, not great beer and a sexy wait staff of beautiful women in tight t-shirts, short orange shorts and panty-hose.  It is a business built in part on attractive, sexy women.  Rep. Julia Hurley used to be one of those women and unlike most politicans, she is not afraid to say that she worked there.  As most people know by now Hurley worked at Hooters and has been profiled in the company's in-house magazine in which Hurley credits her time as a server at the restaurant chain for helping her find the self-confidence to move forward with her life, in light of being a young single mother. Hurley has since left Hooters and started her own company and now run for office, defeating a nine-term incumbent in the Volunteer State.

The debate seems to be that Hurley appears to take pride in her past and instead of trying to run away from her past, she embraces her past or at least is not trying to hide it. As writer Sarah Rufca said:

The latest female politician to earn the scorn of the Internet for violating these rules is Julia Hurley, a first-term state representative in Tennessee. Hurley's crime is two-fold — having worked in her youth at a Hooter's restaurant and having the gall to not completely disown such a scandalous past, and instead try to inspire other Hooters girls with her success.

So here we have a politician, who like lots people when they were young, waited tables to make ends meet.  So what makes Hurley any different, other than she worked at Hooters and then dared to run for office with Hooters Girl on her resume?  The scorn being heaped upon her for not hiding or denouncing her past seems to be related to her being a, gasp, Republican!.   Would this outcry be different if Hurley were a Democrat?  I tend to think not because there is a perverse thrill that seems to capture the media's attention when it turns out that an attractive young Republican woman turns out to have a past.  This process, what Rufca calls "slut shaming" happens immediately when a young attractive woman politician is NOT a Democrat.  Would the media give a toss if Hurley were a Democrat?  That is the question.

Rufca points out a couple of rules that she has learned about being female, single, attractive, a mother and a former model and Hooters girl who is interested in politics--don't do it.   In fact, if you are a woman, here are the rules you  need to know about running for office:

1. Don't be too qualified, serious or ugly or everyone will call you a bitch (or maybe a lesbian) and complain that your shrill voice reminds people of their nagging wives and mothers.

2. Don't be too young, too pretty or too blonde or no one will take you seriously.

3. Don't run if you're single, because how can you succeed in office if you can't even succeed at getting a husband?!

4. Don't run if your husband has ever done anything wrong (like cheat on you) because that is a stain on your character.

5. Don't run if you have non-grownup children, because that makes you a bad mother.

6. Don't run if there's any evidence that you have ever had or desire to have a sex life or might allow yourself to be a sexual being — except for the purpose of having a brood of children, of course.

As the father of two young girls, who I very much want to be happy, successful and assertive, this kind of attention is troubling. I don't want my daughters in their older, more mature lives to fear their past.  This "slut shaming" is such that if my daughters ever want to be a political leader, it would seem that they can't have a past at all. The slut shaming seems to cry out for their entry into a convent only to emerge when they are old enough to run for office. Of course, that won't work either because they will be called Catholic Zealots and therefore unable to hold office lest they be the handmaidens of the Pope.

But is it realistic to believe and expect our leaders, in or out of politics, Republican or Democrat, male or female, young or old, to have nothing in their past?  Can we really expect leaders to be a blank slate arriving on the scene as if fully formed?  But it is not just that Julia Hurley has a past, it is that her past includes a stint in a sexualized atmosphere.  This stint at Hooters does not make Hurley a slut nor does it necessarily imply that she was promiscuous although that seems to be the intention of some people bent on shaming her.  I obviously don't know Hurley's past, but for a woman at her age, it is not unreasonable to believe she has a sexual past (and with a child we know she had sex at least once).  I am not suggesting that Hurley has attempted to sexualize herself, but those who are attempting to shame her seem bent on sexualizing her.

It seems to me that we as a nation have a hard time accepting that people can be good at some aspect of their life and still have other facets to their life--including a sex life.  We don't need to sexualize them and just because that person chooses to sexualize themselves (by choice) it doesn't make them a bad person or means they have sold out the other aspects of their life.

I have commented in the past about women like Amanda Beard, a woman who has been amazingly successful in her chosen field of swimming, who chose to appear nude in Playboy. I questioned why it was such a bad thing for either Beard, swimming or women. In another post about female athletes and the sexualization of female athletes, I noted:

What we forget, often times, when thinking about female athletes, particularly those like Beard, [race car driver Danica] Patrick, [Anna] Kournikova and others who are at least adults, is that these women, in addition to being athletes are themselves sexual beings. One presumes they have and in some cases we know, that they have romantic and presumably sexual relationships. These women are not nuns who wait in a convent until it is time to compete and retreat to the cloistered halls after the competition. If these women choose to express their sexuality in teh pages of Playboy or FHM or any other magazine, why should we as a society get our collective underwear in a twist?

We don't put the same standards upon men? Male athletes are assumed to be sexual creatures and no one questions their attendance at a strip club. But for women athletes to express a sexuality, that becomes something to be feared or criticized. And men who partake in the celebration of the female form in the shape of an athlete in a magazine are some how misogynistic for their enjoyment.

Now, in addition to the sexualization of female athletes, we have a new concern about the sexualization of female politicians. Julia Hurley or Sarah Palin or any other attractive female politician should not have to worry about the fact that they have a past where, potentially, they engaged in sexual behavior outside of having children or even (horrors) outside of wedlock. They should not have their past dragged out before the public and held up as something bad.  Hurley is not showing upon the floor of the Tennessee State House in her Hooters uniform, but we shouldn't dimiss her simply because she is attractive.

Who among us over the age of 18 doesn't have a past? I personally know doctors, lawyers, accountant, teachers and academics who have a past that included drinking beer from a oversizes glass fish, being known as a "toxic twin" for their drinking exploits, had multiple sexual partners and engaged in some behavior that was less than publicly approved. Its doesn't make them a lesser person, unskilled doctor, lawyers, accountant, teacher, academic or any other professional. It makes them human.

Our politicians are humans, they have a past. Instead of scandalizing the past, we should acknowledge that they have a past, from which we hoped they, like Hurley, learned lessons. I like the fact that Hurley has not chosen to hide behind a defense of "I was desperate, poor, unskilled and a single mother." She may have been all of those things at the time, but she has made no excuse or attempted to hide for her past. Years later she says she has taken lessons from her experience that made her who she is today. That is what leadership is about.

Does Hurley have a long career as a political leader ahead of her? Who knows, but I do know this: the sooner we as a public and a media get past the fact that our political leaders have a past, have made mistakes and are human beings, with (usually) a sexual past, the better off we as a country are going to be.

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Surf's Up

Wow, work has been crazy so I have been slow on the posting.

Here are some stories I find interesting today:

The Budget Battle as it is being called is coming to the House of Representatives.  I have to admit, the GOP leadership is faced with a problem--the tea-party freshman are a big enough block to be reckoned with.  The tea party freshmen are holding the mirror up and trying to get serious cuts to the budget.  The schism on spending has been behind closed doors, but it is becoming public.  The freshman could become a real pain for Speaker John Boehner.

A couple of teacher stories.  First a high school English teacher in the Philadelphia area blogged about her students and it has gotten her in trouble.  The story is not clear if the teacher actually named her students and the blog has since been deleted.  But the teacher apparently wanted to write on student reports the truth as she saw rather than the canned resonses urged by her employer.  Parents want the teacher fired.  Do you think that is bad, try a teacher in Silver Spring, MD who has been arrested and held in jail for physically assaulting her students.  This is bad, very bad.  It is made worse by the fact that her students are 6 and 7 years old.  Not teenagers--kids--first graders.  The galling thing to me--the teacher who is in jail--has been place on administrative leave.

As NASA is planning their final shuttle mission, there is a wonder about the future of space flight in the U.S.   I think the idea of privatized space flight is a good idea.  If you don't think so, take a look at the Star Trek: First Contact movie, the man who invented warp drive for humans in that film was revered by Capt. Picard and his contemporaries in their own time.  But when they travel back in time (it is not as bad as you think) that same "hero" turned out to be a guy looking to make a buck.  It is not so bad to be interested in making a dollar and inventing something that benefits everyone in the long run.

Glenn Reynolds has a bit on being a conservative in academia.   Are academic conservatives the gays of 2010?

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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Bristol Palin to release memoir this summer


This woman is barely in her 20's.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Left Needs a New Target--Chick-fil-A

The Weekly Standard takes a look at the college campus movement to ban Chick-fil-A from campuses.  Why?

A Pennsylvania outlet’s sponsorship of a February marriage seminar by one of that state’s most outspoken groups against homosexuality lit up gay blogs around the country. Students at some universities have also begun trying to get the chain removed from campuses.
“If you’re eating Chick-fil-A, you’re eating anti-gay,” one headline read. The issue spread into Christian media circles, too.

Now  you have to look at a couple of things in this matter.  First, it is not Corporate Chick-fil-A that has sponsored the "offending" seminar, but it is a franchisee.  Like most fast food chains, individual stores are owned by franchisees, that is local businessmen who have a certain amount of discretion in their public face.  That is not to say the corporate Chick-fil-A would not endorse the seminar, but I point out the difference because there is no proof that Chick-fil-A as a national corporation sponsored the seminar.

Second, why does a sponsorship necessarily equate to being anti-gay. It is true that the corporate ethos of Chick-fil-A has a distinctive Christian overtone and is that such a bad thing?  The last time I checked, Chick-fil-A is a privately held corporation and not a government entity, they can sponsor who they want, for what ever reason they want.  But if Chick-fil-A sponsors a debate between gay rights supporters and anti-gay right supporters, is that anti-gay?  What if the company or a franchisee sponsors a gay pride parade?  Chick-fil-A franchises sponsor a great many local charities and events.

So the problem is what?  According to Peter Wood, the problem is that those on the left believe in free speech only for those who agree with them:

So far as I can tell, no one has accused Chick-fil-A of discriminating against gays and lesbians in its employment practices or its customer service. The incident that sparked the boycott campaign was a Pennsylvania Chick-fil-A restaurant’s provision of sandwiches and brownies to a marriage seminar put on by the Pennsylvania Family Institute—a group that opposes gay marriage and has been characterized by activists as anti-gay. The seminar in Harrisburg is “The Art of Marriage:  Getting to the Heart of God’s Design.” Presumably Chick-fil-A contributes to other groups that hold similar views. Does that really provide a sound reason to those who favor gay marriage to drive Chick-fil-A off campus?
I think not. The campaign is unwise because it seeks to punish and stigmatize those with whom the protesters disagree. The ideal of the campus as a place where people debate their differences by means of rational arguments and well-vetted evidence has been on a downward trajectory for decades. Kicking Chick-fil-A off campus is a reductio ad absurdum of the now-common tactic of roaring at your supposed opponents. The company, after all, isn’t busy on campus promoting an anti-gay marriage agenda. It’s just selling chicken sandwiches.
Protests like the one aimed at Chick-fil-A are partly or even mostly attempts to exhibit the power of the protesters. That aim has nothing to do with winning the argument—is gay marriage a good social policy or a mistaken one?—and everything to do with controlling the narrative. Only those who agree with the protesters are granted a legitimate voice hereafter. Roar loud enough and you may intimidate the target, but that’s of less importance than pumping up excitement among followers and creating a secondary wave of self-censorship among others who correctly surmise that it is dangerous to disagree.

That is the agenda.  And I think Chick-fil-A should do the Christian thing--turn the other cheek and continue with their business practice.  Since their campus presence is no doubt due to a contract with the school, I suggest that Chick-fil-A continue those contracts and dare the schools to cancel the contract.  If at the end of the contract period, the franchise wishes to terminate the presence, they can do so pursuant to the contract.  I dare say that the quality of Chick-fil-A's food and service (they end every interaction with "My Pleasure" which I love) will keep the franchise on campus.

Protests like this one are silly and serve no actual purpose but harden the lines of debate.  The left does give a toss about legitimate debate--they care only that they get heard and any opponents are silenced.  They are like a 4 year-old child who has learned that if you cry long enough and loud enough you will get what you want.  What it takes is good parenting to end that notion and it takes good people who despise the tactic punish the whiny 4 year old left.

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