Monday, April 26, 2010

Elton John--"Levon" (Live 1971)

Great song, great performance. A quintessential paring of songwriting and performance.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Brilliant Onion Article

All hail, The Onion!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Old Crow Medicine Show: "My Next Go Round"

A selection for your enjoyment. It's probably nothing that you've heard, but give it a shot if you trust me.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Murdock Hits the Jackpot

Over at Murdock's blog, he found some solid gold. Check out the two videos for a good laugh.

"Iran Strives for a Nuke Free World," and I've Got Some Oceanfront Property in Arizona for Sale

The headline reads Iran "Strives" for a Nuke Free World.

Yeah, maybe, but definitely not until its desire for an Israel Free World policy is complete.

C'mon, Iran. Seriously, who in the heck do think is going to buy this? Do you take us for morons, as if we're the kind of people who will hear and believe any given line of BS (e.g. Obamacare will decrease costs and improve health care; Iraq had weapons of mass-destruction; it's the Internal Revenue Service; Scientology is a religion; etc)?

On second thought, well played, Iran. Well played.

Cartoon posted from here.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Watergate Had Its Cover Up, Why Shouldn't Climategate?

Somewhere, behind closed doors, when the truth started to leak out in Climategate, a group of big wigs realized that they'd have to admit to something. They decided that they'd have to admit the most obvious problems with their so-called "science," so now they're conceding that the hockey-stick graph depicting the rise in global temperatures and threat regarding Himalayan glaciers are wrong.

But that's it. Everything else is kosher, right? We're good. Seriously, you can trust us.

So what have they really learned? Nothing. They knew that this garbage was false all along, and only now admit it because they have to do so. Do not expect a mea culpa. They don't think that you deserve one. They think that you're an idiot, and they're your knights in shining armor.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Imagine if our federal taxes weren't withheld from paycheck to paycheck, and we instead had to "pay up" on April 15. You can bet that most people would be horrified by how much the government extorts.

Instead, as if by slight of hand, the feds make many grateful for this time of year: the season of the tax refund. As if it was some kind of gift and not your own damn money being returned because the grubbers took to much.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Link to Free Advice Post: Obama on the Pesky Constitution

Head on over to Free Advice and take a gander at Obama on the Pesky Constitution.

From the Mouths of "Terrorists"

According to Roland S. Martin, Confederates argued in the exact same words as Muslim terrorists. Let's see.

Here's how a former Confederate officer, Gen. John Gordon, framed the debate:

During the entire life of the Republic the respective rights and powers of the States and general government had furnished a question for endless controversy. In process of time this controversy assumed a somewhat sectional phase. The dominating thought of the North and of the South may be summarized in a few sentences.
The South maintained with the depth of religious conviction that the Union formed under the Constitution was a Union of consent and not of force; that the original States were not the creatures but the creators of the Union; that these States had gained their independence, their freedom, and their sovereignty from the mother country, and had not surrendered these on entering the Union; that by the express terms of the Constitution all rights and powers not delegated were reserved to the States; and the South challenged the North to find one trace of authority in that Constitution for invading and coercing a sovereign State.
The North, on the other hand, maintained with the utmost confidence in the correctness of her position that the Union formed under the Constitution was intended to be perpetual; that sovereignty was a unit and could not be divided; that whether or not there was any express power granted in the Constitution for invading a State, the right of self-preservation was inherent in all governments; that the life of the Union was essential to the life of liberty; or, in the words of Webster, "liberty and union are one and inseparable."
Or from the Virginian, Robert Mercer Taliaferro Hunter:
When this Union was originally formed, the United States embraced too many degrees of latitude and longitude, and too many varieties of climate and production, to make it practicable to establish and administer justly one common government which should take charge of all the interests of society. To the wise men who were entrusted with the formation of that union and common government, it was obvious enough that each separate society should be entrusted with the management of its own peculiar interests, and that the united government should take charge only of those interests which were common and general. To enforce this necessary distinction, it was provided that all powers, not specially granted, should be reserved to the people and the States, and a list of the granted powers was carefully and specifically made. But two parties soon arose in regard to these limitations. Those who wielded the powers thus granted became interested to remove these limitations as far as possible, whilst the minority, who belonged to the governed rather than the governing party, early learned to regard these limitations as the best and surest defences against the abuses and oppressions of a despotic majority. . . .
The contest between the two sections over the limitations in the constitution upon the governing party under it began with the commencement of its history, and ended only, as I shall presently show, with the revolution which destroyed the old form and established the despotism of a majority of numbers. It is in the history of this context we must look for the true causes of the war, and the use made of the victory by the winning party will show the object and nature of that contest. When it became obvious that the only protection of the rights of the minority against the encroachments of the majority was to be found in the limitations upon the power of the governing party, a death struggle arose between the two parties over the constitutional restraints upon this power. The struggle between the two parties commenced at the beginning of the government. These were respectively led by Hamilton and Jefferson, the one with an avowed preference for monarchy, the other the great apostle of democracy, men of signal abilities, and each conscious of what would be the consequence of complete and perfect victory on either side. The party of power showed a constant tendency to draw all important subjects of jurisdiction within the vortex of Federal control, and an equally persevering effort on the other to limit that control to the strict necessities of a common government.
Yep, sounds to me exactly like bin Laden and the ilk.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

On an Utterly Asinine, Dishonest, Idiotic Article From

I know. I know. That title covers an awful lot and has you asking, "Which one?"

But when a friend of mine decided to forward me this article--one of the worst (as in dumbest) interpretations/analyses of the Civil War--he had to know that it would get my goat. Way to go, Dan.

The author's thesis is that the secessionist movement in the South was pretty much the same as militant Islam today, and the Confederacy as an organization was akin to Al Quaeda.

The argument is one based entirely on analogy with such gems as

When you make the argument that the South was angry with the North for "invading" its "homeland," Osama bin Laden has said the same about U.S. soldiers being on Arab soil.
I guess this means that any people who resist an aggressive neighbor's unprovoked invasion are as vile as Al Queda.

Charles De Gaulle and the Free French resistance? They were a bunch of religious fanatics who unjustly opposed Nazi occupation.

Metacomet, Pontiac, Tecumseh, Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse--they had no reason whatsoever to resist the invasion of their homeland.

But the author is not being merely hyperbolic. "Same language; same cause; same effect," he says.

If a Confederate soldier was merely doing his job in defending his homeland, honor and heritage, what are we to say about young Muslim radicals who say the exact same thing as their rationale for strapping bombs on their bodies and blowing up cafes and buildings?
Did you catch that? The author actually claimed that Confederates and Al Quaeda's terrorists "say the exact same thing as their rationale." His exact words include "say the exact same thing." Remember Pickett's speech just before the charge at Gettysburg: "Up men, and to your posts. And let none of you forget that you are humble servants of Allah!"

The only analogy that can honestly be built here is that both Confederates and Muslim terrorists who have committed atrocities had grievances. This does not make them one and the same.

And then there's this bit of absurdity:

Just as radical Muslims have a warped sense of religion, Confederate supporters have a delusional view of what is honorable. The terrorists are willing to kill their own to prove their point, and the Confederates were just as willing in the Civil War to take up arms against their fellow Americans to justify their point.

This whole article is worse than an exaggeration. It is one of the most dishonest analogies that I have ever seen a serious so-called journalist make. If you want to know the Confederate rationale, take a look at each Confederate State's Declaration of Secession. You'll find that they are remarkably like the United States' Declaration of Independence. You know, the document written by Thomas "Osama bin" Jefferson.

Confederate soldiers were not taking arms against their fellow Americans to justify their point. Confederate soldiers were taking arms against an aggressive foreign power that was hell bent on conquest. In this respect they were (if we want to draw an analogy) most like the colonists who, under Yassir Washington, seceded from and fought Great Britain.

Reading this article from makes me angry, baffled, and sad. Then again, it is CNN. Perhaps they're so desperate for ratings that they really are unabashedly "jumping the shark."

Next week on Parents who insist on good hygiene for their children are like Nazis.

(Hint: Both forced reluctant people into the showers).

Friday, April 09, 2010

Stupak Out; Fool TBD In

It's great to hear that swindlers and scoundrels such as Bart Stupak are being run out of office (in the sense that they no longer entertain themselves with delusions of re-election). It's be even better if we could run them out immediately.

However, the historian in me reminds me that running the bad guys out doesn't always bring the good guys in.

Russia traded an inept Tsar for a sociopathic Bolshevik (yeah, I thought about it, but "sociopathic socialist" didn't seem right--especially to my readers whose inner voice has a lisp).

Germany traded a pathetic Wiemar regime for Hitler's Third Reich.

Adios, Batista; hola Castro.

See you later, Friends. Welcome, Joey.

Yeah, I just have this nagging suspicion that after the elections in November we'll be reminded again of the old adage: "The more things change, the more they stay the same."

The Onion: Freakonomist Keeps Close Eye On GE Stock Versus Height Of Mexican Weightlifters

This article from The Onion will probably amuse only those among you who have read Freakonomics.

Quick Question

Why is it that people still seem shocked that mining is a dangerous job, and bad things often happen to people employed in dangerous work?

Classic Parking Ticket Dispute.

This is just too funny.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Tea Parties

Of the Tea Party movement, the AP dismissively says
It has no single issue around which people rally. It has no clear leader who drives the organization's message, motivates followers and raises money. Indeed, the hundreds of tea party chapters and tens of thousands of its activists cannot agree on the most basic strategic goal: whether to influence the current political system or dismantle it.
Kinda reminds me of those fellows most active in Boston, say in the early 1700s.

Later in the article:
"Lot of noise," says one senior Republican consultant, "no muscle." But plenty of ability to make a scene: The consultant, who is directly involved in plotting the party's Senate elections strategy, insisted his name not be attached to that quote, concerned about alienating activists. [Can you believe this last part? What a douche!]
Lot of noise? Like that group--what the hell was its name? It had those James Otis, Sam Adams, and Paul Revere dudes... The Sons of Liberty. That's right.

Sure, they never did anything of importance.

Now I'm not saying that the Tea Party movement is in fact going to bring about real change. What I'm hoping to point out is how dismissive the press and politicos are of anyone who questions the status quo.

And when the Tea Party does cohere around a firm set of principles and center around a leader, I think that I can guess what the politicos will say then:

"The die is cast."

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Where Are They

I recently finished watching HBO's series Rome. (I don't have HBO, but I do have Netflix).

In Season One's finale, Caesar dies like a dog, stabbed to death by Senators whom he thought he controlled.

Yes, there was once a time when a republic guarded itself against usurpation.

Bill of Rights