Friday, May 28, 2010

Chris Matthew's Swan Song

With apologies to Don McLean

(Sung to the tune of American Pie)

Long. long time ago,
He made a tingle run up my thigh
and I had the man who made me sigh
For I knew if he had the chance,
He would make the politicos dance
and America would be happy for awhile.

But he really isn’t that great
the destiny will have to wait
he broke my heart with health care
and so many things he wouldn’t dare.

Them good old boys tried to cover his lies
Hoping that the faith in him could never die
but I feel so lonely in my pants
saying give the homeboy one more chance.
Let’s give the homeboy one more chance.

So it’s bye, bye my tingling thigh
with the oils in the levy and I can only sigh
He had the House and Senate ooh,
But there was nothing real that he could do.
There is nothing real that he can do,

When he gave a speech, he spoke so well
at least until the prompter fell
His use of language with elan
hit a snag at the word “corpseman”

I don’t remember if I cried
when I realized my faith had died
but nothing stopped the steep steep slide
of people who lost trust in him
Of people who lost trust in him.

So it’s bye, bye my tingling thigh
with Obama owning Chevy and I only can cry.
He had the House and Senate ooh,
But there was nothing real that he could do.
There is nothing real that he can do,

I knew a girl who sang the blues
saying why did I ever have to choose
the one guy who couldn’t get it done
If I had my chance again
my vote for him I would not spend
but maybe go with Hllary for a while

But this November is just the start
Come 2012 we’ll have a part
In tossing Obama to the side
With comments from me oh so snide.

I’m for anyone who is not him
I’ve had it with picking on a whim
And the next time my leg twitches or tingles
I'll see the Doctor for treatment of shingles
So it’s bye, bye my tingling thigh
with the oils in the levy and I can only cry.
He had the House and Senate ooh,
But there was nothing real that he could do.
There is nothing real that he can do,

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

New and Improved Access

Cong. Rehberg has a post up at Electric City Weblog where he is introducing America Speaks Out.  I have already added it to the Blogroll, and have just begun to investigate its potential.  What I like about it so far, is that it seems to allow interaction from constituents with their elected representatives and each other.
While Obama did great things with the Intertubes during his campaign, (although most of it seemed to be a way to bypass campaign finance limits) and his Organizing for America is still extant, that site seems to be more of the directive nature.  This new site may actually make the truly national public square with kiosks oriented to interests.

Could be interesting.

An Example of How Not to Write

I have given up on Left in the West ever since Matt Singer moved on.  I really do wonder sometimes if he regrets passing it on to Jay Stevens (who is no longer in Montana) or now, Montana Cowgirl.  But like a bad car wreck, every once in a while, I will look at what they are writing.  Most of the time, it is innocuous partisan, unthinking tripe.  Red meat for the masses who have decided that they are the self appointed elites of the State.But then, we have the clearest example of crap writing I have seen in a long time.

To begin with: Even Montana's small conservative papers have acknowledged that the drunken boat wreck in which Montana's lone Congressman Dennis Rehberg got wasted, let a friend drive drunk, and ran up an estimated $1.5 million tab for health care and work comp claims for himself and his staff is a campaign issue.(Emphasis added)
So, let's try this a little at a time.  Cong. Rehberg got wasted?  And your evidence would be . . . ?  'Let a friend drive drunk?'  Feeling a little passive aggressive are we? At least you do put "estimated" in front of the bill.  Not that it really matters. Why not say an estimated $15 Billion?  It would certainly be based on the same amount of facts as the author used here.

In the next paragraphs, the author used the old strawman argument.  Specifically:

So, Montanans don't want us to do anything about drunk driving and boating?  I beg to differ.

Actually, if you look at what Denny said:
I believe that folks should be held accountable for their own actions, and not punished for the actions of others. That's the Western style of individual responsibility that has made Montana such a special place to live.
 Again, there is nothing there, but Cowgirl marches blindly forward into the machineguns of facts.  You could admire it if it weren't so pathetic.   Next, Cowgirl used pseudo-science to try and extrapolate what Rehberg's blood alcohol was at the time of the accident.  Aside from the fact that retrograde extrapolation is perfectly useless for substantive information, she proceeds forward nonetheless.  But she forgets one important point:  Even assuming that she is correct, what is the legal limit of being a passenger? 

Finally, Cowgirl closes with this:

Rehberg is telling us here that if we don't believe his version of the story, that we aren't smart enough to know better.  We deserve better than a Congressman who can't take responsibility for his actions when responsibility is called for, or even own up to his mistakes afterword.
Trying to count the logical fallacies would certainly consume more time and effort than I wish to expend here.  But once again, I appreciate that she has reminded me of why I don't spend any time at her site.

Monday, May 24, 2010

These Guys Are Something Else

Bill Clinton is ripping on the "Birthers" and is claiming some sort of moral superiority, which is really just pure old partisanship.  While I believe that the main objective of the Birthers is to deligitamize the Obama administration more than anything else, I wonder where Ol' Bill was during the 2000 election, when Bush was accused of stealing the election.  No, then Bill Clinton remained quiet, because it was in his Party's interest to do so. As an example of his perfidy, consider this:
“But 45 percent of registered Republicans still believe that he is serving unconstitutionally,” Clinton insisted, though he did not identify the poll.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Foolish Writings

When you are drafting a contract or just about any legal document that could be challenged, it is customary to put in what is called a "severability clause."  This magic clause says that if any part of the contract or document are found to be legally inoperable, then those parts that remain will still be in force.  It is one of the first things that a law student learns in contract law.

Guess who must not have gone to law school?

That's right, the folks that brought you the monumental health care bill apparently didn't bother with that saving clause.  This is truly stupefying, and explainable only in that they were in such a rush to get it through after the Scott Brown election, that they didn't do their homework.

The Democrat Party has long been advancing the idea that passing ObamaCare would be the same benefit to them as Social Security and Medicare.  It is instead becoming a laughing stock of legislation, proof positive that government is inept at the least and incompetent the more likely explanation.

Monday, May 17, 2010

What in the Hell?

The Supreme Court now says that if you are sentenced to a certain amount of time, and if you are designated a "sexually dangerous offender" then you may be held without bail, or without punishment after your sentence is over if the court wants.
Setting aside the dangerous sexual offender aspect, how in the world do we justify keeping someone locked up?  Seems to me the courts should just do what our state court does, and give them 100 years without parole.
Might be easier for you if you are a terrorist, and trying to kill Americans.  At least then you would be presumed to be eligible to be released.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Democrat's Conundrum

It's too long to paste the entire comic here, but if you follow this link to Day by Day, it does stimulate discussion on how much the government is involved in our lives. But it raises the problems in the Democrat's message:
"You have to be smart to vote for us, but too stupid to take care of yourself, so we will do it for you."

Heckuva job Barry!

Heckuva Job Barry!

While I have long felt that Barak Obama is nothing more than an empty suit who can read a teleprompter, it seems as though some on the Left are starting to feel the same thing.  Chuck Green who is reported to be of a Leftist bent, has the following to say about the job that the President is doing.
It’s all George Bush’s fault.

George Bush, who doesn’t have a vote in Congress and who no longer occupies the White House, is to blame for it all.
He broke Obama’s promise to put all bills on the White House web site for five days before signing them.

He broke Obama’s promise to have the congressional health care negotiations broadcast live on C-SPAN.

He broke Obama’s promise to end earmarks.

He broke Obama’s promise to keep unemployment from rising above 8 percent.

He broke Obama’s promise to close the detention center at Guantanamo in the first year.

He broke Obama’s promise to make peace with direct, no pre-condition talks with America’s most hate-filled enemies during his first year in office, ushering in a new era of global cooperation.

He broke Obama’s promise to end the hiring of former lobbyists into high White House jobs.

He broke Obama’s promise to end no-compete contracts with the government.

He broke Obama’s promise to disclose the names of all attendees at closed White House meetings.

He broke Obama’s promise for a new era of bipartisan cooperation in all matters.

He broke Obama’s promise to have chosen a home church to attend Sunday services with his family by Easter of last year.

Yes, it’s all George Bush’s fault. President Obama is nothing more than a puppet in the never-ending, failed Bush administration.

If only George Bush wasn’t still in charge, all of President Obama’s problems would be solved. His promises would have been kept, the economy would be back on track, Iran would have stopped its work on developing a nuclear bomb and would be negotiating a peace treaty with Israel, North Korea would have ended its tyrannical regime, and integrity would have been restored to the federal government.
I find this particularly amusing since Obama has now decided that the Gulf Oil Spill Disaster is also Bush's fault.  Never mind that it was his department that was permitting without appropriate review.
I also know that there are those who believe that all of the above is true, or at least are willing to mouth the assertions even if they don't believe it.  Obama can do no wrong.  It has to be something or someone else who is obstructing him from bringing Hope and Change.
I feel sorry for them.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

My Condolences

Greg Smith of Electric City Weblog has announced the death of his father.  He has also turned off comments so I couldn't offer my sympathies directly.  But Greg, our thoughts and prayers are with you, especially now in your time of grief.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Even The Stupid Can Get Lucky

Rep. Alan Grayson, (Clown -FL) is usually a blowhard partisan without anything useful to offer.  And then he goes and does this:

I am not big on conspiracy like some are about the Fed, but I don't think it would be a bad idea to audit it anyway.

TheWorld Turned Upside Down

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Senator Robert Bennett has been denied renomination for his senatorial seat from Utah.  The culprits in this theft seem to be members of the Tea Party:  Some may see this as the purging of the impure, much like the Democrats did to Joe Liebermann.  But I think that those who argue this are missing the real truth of the matter.
The Tea Partiers are not solely Republican.  But what they are could be fairly considered as small government activists.  While Liebermann was chased out of the Democrat Party for consorting with Republicans, it was done by the followers of Markos Moulitas, a committed and fervent "progressive."  Members of the Tea Party are just as likely to be Independents as Republicans, and there are even some thinking former Democrats thrown in.  This difference is the reason why the Tea Party will have a much longer lasting impact on politics then the "Friends of Ned."
Senator Bennett may feel that he has been treated unfairly, just because he voted for TARP and other expansion of the state without the ability to pay for it.  But he is just the first, and if the Republican Party is smart (not a given in any event) they will recognize that this group will have more influence than the usual get out the vote of the base in coming elections.  In fact, it is probably worse for the Republicans, because their base is more likely to sympathize with the goals of the Tea Party.
But the secret power of the Tea Party is that we are broke.  Not just overspent, but flat busted, make Greece look like Scrooge McDuck broke.  Some may cavil that the Tea Party never complained when Bush was spending, but they are absolutely wrong.  In fact, it was the general disgust with his overspending that led to the Democrats gaining control in 2006, and increasing their margin in 2008, as they cited their "fiscal responsibility bona fides.  Unfortunately, it was all just a lie.
The country is at a crossroads.  On the one path, we increase taxes in order to maintain what is now considered to be the minimal level of government.  This path will lead to higher unemployment, stagnating wages, and zero growth or innovation.  People will recognize that it is in their interests to not produce, but to relax and enjoy the results of those who do produce.  A sort of reverse Marxism, where the productive have their wealth stolen, only not by the capitalists, but by the non-productive. 
The other path is no more comfortable either.  It will demand a complete reodering of what we are to expect from the government:  National Defense, secure borders and a court system.  Everything else is going to be off the table until we get our debt under control. 
But if we do get our debt under control, we have the potential to unleash human productivity like the workd has never seen before.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

The Real Problem With Immigration Reform

Apparently, wearing an American flag in a high school in California is now considered to be inflammatory.  I guess this makes sense only if you think that California is a part of Mexico and not one of these United States.  Maybe that is why all of the ruckus about illegals.  They are the legals, it's just those people who call themselves American who are illegal.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

There He Goes Again

President Obama gave the graduation address at the University of Michigan.  In spite of his flaming rhetoric, luckily no one was moved to violence.  Yet.
Some of his lies cannot go unanswered.  For instance, he said
But what troubles me is when I hear people say that all of government is inherently bad.
Why is it troubling? Government, as presently constituted is immensely powerful, and to ignore that power, or to believe that it will only be used for good is delusional,  Waco Ruby Ridge, and others being just a small sampling of the government using force against their citizens.  But maybe worse than government being bad, is that government is incompetent.  It's not that they mean to destroy your life, they do it without thinking or meaning to.  While there is a difference in motivation, there is no difference in results.
Government, he said, is the roads we drive on and the speed limits that keep us safe. It's the men and women in the military, the inspectors in our mines, the pioneering researchers in public universities.
Okay, but it is also the DEA, NSA, IRS, Border Patrol, Forest Service rangers who are armed and so many others.  It is the petty tyranny of anyone with a badge and a gun telling me what to do. And that's not even counting the bureaucrats who make your life miserable, all the while proclaiming they are doing it for your own good.

The financial meltdown dramatically showed the dangers of too little government, he said, "when a lack of accountability on Wall Street nearly led to the collapse of our entire economy."

What he fails to mention is that the financial meltdown already had layers of laws and bureaucrats to prevent the meltdown, and yet, they still failed.  Why is the answer to all government failures, more government.  "We didn't do it right before, but with more money we will do it right. Just like before, um, er, I mean, I am sure there must have been at least one time."
Obama urged both sides in the political debate to tone it down. "Throwing around phrases like 'socialists' and 'Soviet-style takeover,' 'fascists' and 'right-wing nut' -- that may grab headlines," he said. But it also "closes the door to the possibility of compromise...
So, saying that Bush is a liar and a terrorist is okay, but don't use the S word?  Don't get me wrong, I admire that he has finally come to realize that a level of civility is necessary.  Better late than never.  Just would be a lot more effective if he acknowledged the past.

"At its worst, it can send signals to the most extreme elements of our society that perhaps violence is a justifiable response."
Passionate rhetoric isn't new, he acknowledged. Politics in America, he said, "has never been for the thin-skinned or the faint of heart. ... If you enter the arena, you should expect to get roughed up."

Okay, another example might be that suppressing dissent is more likely to lead to violence, since the mentally unbalanced are less likely to think that it is their only venue.  Just like the Left did to Bush for eight years.
Sorry, but Obama has become a parody, even when he doesn't mean to be.

Understanding Proof

Gregg has an interesting discussion going on about illegal immigration, and one of the problems is that so many people don;t understand the differing levels of proof.  Here is something that I cobbled together, and hope that it will fit as formatted:

Presumption of innocence only exists in the courtroom.  The State is allowed to proceed on the basis of probable cause, which is enough to get you into the court.  I try to demonstrate it graphically using the jury bar, and I will try to do it here starting with unknown and going to known.  This is not strictly linear, except that preponderance of the evidence is considered to be 50% plus a smidge.

---  Total Unknown  Don't know, never can know.
--- Particularized suspicion, Enough for a cop to ask for your ID, look into something that could be suspicious.
--- Probable Cause, enough to arrest, get into court.  All that the state has proven prior to trial
---  Preponderance of the evidence - more likely than not.  Enough to take your money
--- Clear and Convincing - Amount of evidence for DPHHS to take your kids away.
--- Beyond a reasonable doubt - Enough to take your freedom, or your life in a capital case.
--- Total known  No question, no doubt, no way, no how.