Saturday, December 29, 2012

Sentimental Journey and Maid In the Shade Get Ready to Go Flying

I decided to drop in at the Commemorative Air Force Museum at Falcon Field in Mesa today and was rewarded by getting there just in time to see their Boeing B-17, Sentimental Journey, starting up prior to taxiing out for a flight. Here’s the video:

I just love the throaty rumble of those radial engines.

Shortly after Sentimental Journey taxied out it was the turn of the museum’s B-25J, Maid in the Shade to start up and taxi out. Here she is:

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Saturday, December 08, 2012

Who Costs More, True Royalty or the Obamas?

This is Mark Steyn in his weekly Orange County Register Column:

The cost to taxpayers of flying one man, his wife, two daughters and a dog to Hawaii is estimated at $3,639,622. For purposes of comparison, the total bill for flying the entire Royal Family (Queen, princes, dukes, the works) around the world for a year is £4.7 million – or about enough for two Obama vacations.

According to the USAF, in 2010 Air Force One cost American taxpayers $181,757 per flight hour. According to the Royal Canadian Air Force, in 2011 the CC-150 Polaris military transport that flew William and Kate from Vancouver to Los Angeles cost Her Majesty's Canadian subjects $15,505 per hour – or about 8/100ths of the cost.

[Snip]

As the Daily Mail in London reported, "High Fliers: Prince William and his wife Kate spend an incredible £52,000 on the one-way flight from L.A. to London for themselves and their seven-strong entourage." Incredible! For £52,000, you couldn't take the president from Washington to a state visit to an ice cream parlor in a Maryland suburb. Obama flew Air Force One from Washington to Williamsburg, Va., requiring a wide-bodied transatlantic jet that holds 500 people to ferry him a distance of a little over 100 miles. And, unlike their British and Canadian counterparts, the American media are entirely at ease with it.

Read the whole thing.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Democrat Duplicity–Will the GOP Fall For It Again

Milton Wolf has a must-read column over at The Washington Times in which he asks; “How many times does Lucy have to pull away the football before Charlie Brown finally wises up and quits playing her game?”

The Democrats do this to the Republicans again and again. They sucker them into agreeing to tax increases in exchange for vague assurances of spending cuts at some future date which, of course, never happen and it works. Every. Single. Time. Will the GOP finally wise up this time?

There’s more to the Democrats’ game than just this and this part of the column explains:

The Democrats’ lust for tax increases goes far beyond simple class warfare, as atrocious as that alone is. Democrats are fully aware that the rich already are paying more than their fair share. The wealthy (top 10 percent) may earn 50 percent of the income, but they pay 70 percent of the federal taxes. If that’s not fair, what is? Eighty percent? One hundred percent?

The Democrats’ long game is to push an ever-increasing tax burden onto fewer and fewer taxpayers. This grows a class of Americans who may or may not earn paychecks but certainly become beneficiaries of government largesse while remaining blissfully detached from its enormous cost. (What’s their fair share?) Economists would call this a recipe for disaster. Democrats would call it a voting base. Weak-kneed Republicans are poised to help them build it.

Read the whole thing.

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Took a break. Now, back to work.

It’s now just shy of a month after the election and I have to say the results left me in stunned disbelief. I am still having a hard time processing how Barack Obama could possibly get reelected with the record of the last four years. I suppose the answer is that he was able to do it because he didn’t have to run on his record. He just had to demonize and distract with phony issues like the supposed “war on women” while the MSM provided cover for him by playing along and studiously avoiding any subject that might make him look bad. That covers a lot of subjects too.

I am also disappointed in the turnout, or lack thereof, on our side. With the stakes for or country and the economy so high how could anyone possibly justify just staying home and not voting? Romney wasn’t your first choice of candidate (he wasn’t mine either) so you just decided not to play? As they say in the military, you go to war with the army you have, not the one you wish you had.

Well, let’s just hope the damage over the next four years isn’t as bad as we fear and that the GOP manages to get its act together in time for the 2014 midterms, though I’m not holding my breath on either count.

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Saturday, November 03, 2012

Where Socialism Leads, and Why You Should Vote Republican This Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The following video is from a man who has been there, done that (to him). Learn from his experience so that you don’t experience it yourself.

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Thursday, November 01, 2012

Are You Thinking About a “Protest Vote” On “Principle?”

Bill Whittle asks you to think twice. A final pre-election appeal to principle:

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Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Malignant, Failed President

I haven’t wanted to think of our president as an evil man, just a hopelessly na├»ve one too steeped in his leftist ideology that he is unable to recognize mistakes and change course when his policies turn out to be demonstrably wrong. In the wake of the Benghazi debacle I am now convinced that the man is evil to his core.

Barack Obama left four Americans to die and though he had the means to send help, help that was requested and denied three times. It may have already been too late for Ambassador Stevens and Sean Smith but Tyrone Woods and Glenn Doherty could have been saved as they fought a desperate rear-guard action that saved at least twenty more consulate personel in a battle that lasted nearly 7 hours.

Writing at Canada Free Press, Kelly O’Connell takes the same view, that Obama is evil, in a post entitled “Biopsy From a Malignant, Failed Presidency.” You should definitely read the whole thing but this section summarizes the sentiment quite well:

Third, Obama’s loss of nerve and decision to call off a military strike that could have taken out the Benghazi insurgents, and instead—just letting Americans die an agonizing, lonely death—is the most quintessential aspect of the story. This is because it reveals Barack as he truly is inside—an immoral, gutless, unfeeling, selfish, hypocritical, overly ambitious and hideously uncaring person. Obama ONLY cares about what he personally finds valuable, which obviously does not include individual Americans, or any random human beings.

  This man must be voted out of office and if not voted out, impeached. Such evil cannot be trusted with the levers of power.

 

Related: Mark Steyn calls for an “act of urgent political hygiene.”

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Bill Whittle – Glamour, Shape-Shifters, Etc.

Bill Whittle’s latest firewall. I’ll let him speak for himself.

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Obama Administration Is Lying About Afghanistan, The Taliban and al-Quaida – Lara Logan to Better Government Association

The Obama administration would like us to believe that the war in Afghanistan is winding down and all is well, that the Taliban and al-Quaida are mostly wiped out and ineffectual, so we can exit. CBS war correspondent Lara Logan says otherwise and she should know something about it because she was the correspondent that was gang-raped by a mob of Egyptians in Tahrir Square in Cairo last year. I haven’t watched any news programs on the alphabet soup networks ( I generally refer to CBS as See BS) in well over a decade because I don’t trust anything I hear on them, so I’ve not heard Lara Logan speak before. I’ve definitely missed something. She gets what’s at stake and says that the Obama administration is lying to us (what else is new?) on where things stand with the Taliban and al-Quaida. If anything, they’re even stronger than ever. In a keynote address in front of the Better Government Association she lays out the case.  Watch this:

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Why “You Didn’t Build That” Is So Offensive

There’s a great piece over at Tigerhawk on why Obama’s (and Elizabeth Warren’s) “you didn’t build that” argument is so offensive to the business community. You should definitely read the whole thing but here is a brief excerpt that takes on the typical leftist’s straw man argument that the rich don’t want to pay “their fair share” :

Anyway, I know a great many "successful" people, and not one of them believes that "successful" people should pay less tax, either in absolute terms or as a percentage of their income, than "unsuccessful" people. Further, I am unaware of anybody important who advocates that result. When politicians on the left argue otherwise, they are dishonest. Not only have "successful" people paid an ever higher proportion of direct taxes at all levels, but they are paying a higher proportion relative to their own share of national income. In 2010, I paid 42% of my income in direct taxes -- income, FICA, Medicare, and property -- divided by adjusted gross income. That is a higher proportion than any "unsuccessful" person would pay, and it obviously does not include sales taxes, gasoline taxes, excise taxes, "fees" paid to governments so I can do something I should be allowed to do anyway, taxes on my wages paid by my employer, and corporate taxes paid by companies in which I have invested. If the taxes I pay are not a high enough proportion of my income for Warren and Obama, how high should it be? President Obama believes it should be substantially more and it will be on January 1, 2013 unless Mitt Romney wins. Personally, I do not believe I am failing to pay my "fair share" by forking over more than 42% of everything I earn to the government. If you do, then please tell me how much of my time I "should" work for the benefit of the government? We need to understand what liberals believe.

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Bill Whittle Gives a Speech at Last Sunday’s Wake Up America Rally in LA

And what a barnburner it was. The following is just a highlights video, about 15 minutes long. Note the conspicuous absence of a teleprompter.

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Democrat Pollster Slams MSM Over Silence on Benghazi Atrocity

Democratic Pollster Pat Cadell rightly slams the MSM over its failure to report on the terrorist attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya in which a US ambassador and three other Americans were killed. Why would they neglect this? because they want to protect Barack Obama who made a few brief regretful noises before hopping on Air Force 1 to go to Las Vegas for a fundraiser and proceeded to lie about the attack for nine days (and counting), blaming it on a spontaneous reaction to an obscure YouTube video instead of what it really was; a planned and coordinated attack, most likely as a response to his repeated football spiking, end-zone dancing by Obama over the killing of Osama Bin Laden. They are letting us know they are not defeated.

This was a major foreign policy and security failure that because it reflects badly on the Won, must not be spoken of.

Here is the take-away portion of Pat Cadell’s remarks:

“The press’s job is to stand in the ramparts and protect the liberty and freedom of all of us from a government and from organized governmental power. When they desert those ramparts and decide that they will now become active participants, that their job is not simply to tell you who you may vote for, and who you may not, but, worse—and this is the danger of the last two weeks—what truth that you may know, as an American, and what truth you are not allowed to know, they have, then, made themselves a fundamental threat to the democracy, and, in my opinion, made themselves the enemy of the American people.

The following video captures the highlights.

The Fourth Estate is getting to look more like a Fifth Column. They cannot be trusted to tell us the truth.

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Friday, September 21, 2012

Romney Releases 2011 Tax Return, Pays More Than Required, Left Comes Unglued

Seriously. The commentariat on the left are upset because the Romney’s paid more tax than owed after only partially deducting charitable contributions amounting to 30% of their income in 2011. The TaxProf has the details here.

The MSM have been trying their damnable damnedest to portray Mitt Romney as some greedy, uncaring, evil man and once again the facts turn out to not fit The NarrativeTM . Regrettably, too many people still rely on the MSM to get their news and  don’t realize they are being told brazen lies.

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

#Logofail

The new Obama flag logo with Drudge-like juxtaposition of bloody hand prints:

flaghandprint

 

Update: Down the memory hole.

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Top 10 Percent of Earners Paid 71 Percent of Federal Income Taxes

Tell me again. Who is it that isn’t paying their “fair share?”

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Saturday, September 15, 2012

“Take the Goddamn Gloves Off,” Conservatives

That is what Zombie is saying over at PJ Media:

“Memo to non-leftist bloggers, reporters, and culture-shapers: TAKE THE GODDAMN GLOVES OFF.

This campaign just got real. From right now until election day, no holds are barred.

The mainstream media has dropped all pretense of impartiality. Their behavior in response to the latest Mideast crisis was blatant, outrageous — and effective. When the world erupted on September 11 and the Obama administration groveled at the feet of our barbarian attackers, the major news outlets — knowing that this was a disastrous turn of events for the Obama campaign which could not be spun in his favor — decided the only solution was to brazenly change the subject to a fabricated peripheral side issue: that Romney had committed some kind of “gaffe” by criticizing the government’s weak-kneed response.

As Obama’s dithering threatened to ignite a world war, a significant percentage of mainstream news outlets blared headlines like ROMNEY GAFFE DERAILS REPUBLICAN HOPES and ROMNEY WON’T BACK DOWN FROM FALSE CLAIM. Of course neither of these headlines (nor countless similar headlines over the past two days) was factually true: The only thing that transformed Romney’s rather mild criticism into a “gaffe” was that the media itself declared it to be so.

The MSM knows full well it manipulates The Narrative, and invariably does so to the benefit of Obama, the Democrats, and “progressivism” in general. And people like you and I know this full well too. But until now the media has at least feigned impartiality, not to trick us but in order to maintain credibility and influence over the Honey Boo Boos.

You’ll have to read the rest of it to see who the Honey Boo Boos are, and she’s absolutely right that unless we are as willing to get in the other side’s faces as much as they do ours we’ll never win the argument nor get the truth heard.

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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Words Matter–Obama’s Promises Versus Reality

Watch this video and then tell me again why anyone can seriously consider sending this guy back for a second term.

 

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Number Six- That Would Be the Sin of Envy

Bill Whittle’s latest Firewall Video deals with number six on the list of seven deadly sins, envy, and how the left uses it to promote class warfare. I had a few things to say about envy myself a few years back, as well as envy’s kissing-cousin, greed. You can read that here but meanwhile, here’s Bill:

 

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Monday, September 03, 2012

In Honor of Empty Chair Day, Ladies and Gentlemen, I Give You………..

 

The BarackaLounger:

BarackaLounger with Logo

If you aren’t going to accomplish anything you might as well do it in comfort.

(Update: added “O” logo)

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Sunday, September 02, 2012

A Difference in Outlook–Romney versus Obama

Theodore Dalrymple nails it":

“….one is focused on creating tomorrow’s prosperity while the other is focused on redistributing today’s.”

Guess which one is which.

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Media Madness, and the Reckoning – Clarice Feldman at American Thinker

Clarice Feldman has a great round up over at American Thinker about reactions to the shameful, but not unexpected, performance of the MSM during last week’s Republican National Convention.  It isn’t just the outright falsehoods they peddle but the numerous sins of omission they commit when telling the whole story doesn’t advance The Narrative.

A prime example is the failure to cover speeches by minority speakers such as Mia Love, Republican candidate for Congress from Utah, Former Democratic representative Artur Davis, who actually seconded the motion to nominate Barack Obama at the 2008 DNC convention, Ted Cruz, Hispanic candidate for one of Texas’ Senate seats or Jane  Edmonds, the liberal democrat former Massachusetts Secretary for Workforce Development under Mitt Romney when he was Governor of Massachusetts. These inspiring people and others put the lie to the Left’s portrayal of Republicans in general and Mitt Romney in particular as racist, misogynistic bigots, so they were essentially air-brushed out of the convention.  

Go and read Clarice’s post and when you’re done, here are just a few of the speeches the MSM doesn’t want you to see:

Mia Love

Artur Davis

(related: Artur Davis: I know my speech was a success because MSNBC blacked it out.)

Jane Edmonds

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The U.S. Tax System: Who Really Pays

Our math-challenged president needs to read and internalize this article by WSJ Senior Economics Writer Stephen Moore. It is a point-by-point debunking of some of the most common claims from the left about the fairness of taxes and who is paying what. It's too long to excerpt here, so just go and read the whole thing.

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Friday, August 10, 2012

Whole Foods CEO John Mackey on the Moral Case for Capitalism

In this Reason TV video Whole Foods CEO John Mackey says we need to change the narrative on capitalism and make the moral case for why it is the best system for bettering humanity. He says the narrative has been hijacked by intellectuals who depict capitalism as being solely focused on profits and self-interest while ignoring the value it creates for not only businesses but everyone that touches that business from suppliers to employees to customers.

Let’s not forget Milton Friedman as well.

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Thursday, August 02, 2012

“You Didn’t Build That” The Flip Side of the Coin

Writing over at PJ Media, Ukraine native Oleg Atbashian explains the flip side of the coin on which President Obama's famous "you didn't build that" speech was engraved. In short, by the same logic that all get credit for the achievements of a few, then all can be punished for the failures of a few also.
If the businessman “didn’t build that,” who did? Apparently, all of us did. And if the credit is equally shared, so must be the reward. Jackpot winners all, no more worries about paying the mortgage or filling the gas tank. This thrilled Obama’s voters during the 2008 election, as his speeches removed moral barriers protecting other people’s property, establishing a new morality of forced redistribution of wealth — previously known as looting.

But here’s the catch: everything in this world has a price. If all of us can be credited for someone else’s achievement, by the same logic, all of us can be punished for someone else’s failure. Just as all individual credit goes to the society as a whole, so does all the blame. And if the entire group, class, nation, or race can gain moral authority because some of its members did something right, the same standard grants the moral authority to blame any other group, class, nation, or race because some of its members did something wrong. In the history of collectivism this concept translated into wars, slavery, pogroms, terrorism, ethnic cleansing, expropriation of wealth, deportation, internment, resettlement, and genocide.

The two notions, collective achievement and collective punishment, are as inseparable as two sides of a coin.

But there’s more: if nothing is to your credit, then nothing is your fault. What is the cost of that bargain? In a seemingly fair trade-off, we lose our right to individual achievements but gain the right to blame others for our failures. Collectivism provides us with a sufficiently analgesic illusion of fairness. If you turn out to be a loser, it’s not because you are unqualified: on a whim, with objective standards removed, you can now self-righteously put the blame on those close to you, or on the unfair system, or even on the big wide (and deeply flawed) world.


Read the whole thing. .

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Friday, July 20, 2012

Somebody Else Did That For You, Barack

Barack Obama can't comprehend the idea of earned success, because all of his successes from admission to Columbia University and Harvard Law, election as Editor of the the Harvard Law Review, Illinois State and US Senate, US President and Nobel Peace Prize winner were completely unearned. Somebody Else made that happen. Bill Whittle explains:



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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Megan McArdle is Back

Same Megan, new venue. She's been on leave-of-absence for the last few months (writing a book?). I've been reading her since she was blogging from a trailer in the bottom of Ground Zero and she's always worth the time to read. Here's her take on the upcoming Supreme Court decision on Obamacare.
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Economic Illiteracy at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue

Barack Obama on the Romney campaign pointing out that there is a difference betweeen "outsourcing" and "offshoring": “Yesterday, his advisers tried to clear this up by telling us that there was a difference between ‘outsourcing’ and ‘offshoring.’ Seriously. You can’t make that up.”

Actually, you wouldn't need to "make this up," because there is a difference. This is not by any means the sole example of Barack Obama's economic illiteracy but he manages to make himself sound even smaller and more petty than usual. Kevin Williamson at National Review explains: 

“Outsourcing” happens when a firm contracts out its non-core functions to other vendors, e.g., a hotel decides to hire a cleaning service rather than keep maids on the hotel payroll. To take an extreme but illustrative case, consider that the firms that provide car-driving services do not manufacture their own automobiles or stitch their drivers’ uniforms, even though doing so would “create jobs.” They outsource those tasks to GM or Ford and to whomever makes their uniforms. Likewise, their communication systems are outsourced to Apple or Motorola or RIM.

But at least they should “buy American,” right? GM is an “American” company building “American” cars, but it too outsources many of its needs, sometimes to other U.S.-based companies, sometimes to companies overseas. Moving facilities overseas is what “offshoring” means; it is not synonymous with “outsourcing.” GM has decided that it can build cars without manufacturing brake pads or tires, much less manufacturing steel or rubber, and its production partners include facilities, workers, and investors from around the world. (This is, it should go without saying, a good thing. People who talk mistily about the virtues of “global cooperation” rarely recognize it when they see it.)
The belief that seems to be popular on the left is that the point of offshoring is to take advantage of cheap labor but in Williamson's article he points out that the offshored functions tend to go to high wage countries like Germany and Japan, not Haiti and Rwanda. Williamson:  "That is because low wages are not the goal of offshoring. High productivity is the goal of offshoring. There is a reason that BMW does not move all of its manufacturing operations to India, and patriotism is not it."

Read the whole thing. 

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Saturday, June 23, 2012

Daniel Henninger: A middle class is the result of growth, not its cause.

That is an important point made by Daniel Henninger in yesterday's Wonderland column in the Wall Street Journal in which he asserts that the coming election boils down to one issue: economic growth. Voters need to choose between two economic growth models, Barack Obama's class based growth model or one that actually works; a low-tax, regulatory certainty and no more than absolutely necessary. In other words, as close to a free market as possible.

Go read the whole thing.

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Fast & Furious: Botched Investigation, Or Something More Sinister?

If you don't know what Operation Fast & Furious or have only recently heard about it, it is probably because you rely on the mainstream media for your news and they have been very studiously ignoring it for over a year. Why would they do that? It isn't because it isn't news. It's because it's news that reflects very badly on their man, Barack Obama and his Attorney General, Eric Holder.

Bill Whittle's latest Afterburner will bring you up to speed on what it's all about:



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Friday, June 01, 2012

An Open Letter to "Mr." Obama

The incomparable Vodkapundit has written a letter to our Dear Leader, offering some good advice about what he should do if SCOTUS strikes down the healthcare law:

Mr. Obama, if the Supreme Court does strike down this law, you should get down on both knees and thank them.

And then you ought to stay there a while and beg us all for forgiveness.
 
We’re waiting.


Do go and read the whole thing.

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Monday, May 28, 2012

The US Budget Explained

I ran into this over at Samizdata while on my Daily Blog Patrol this morning. I believe it is quite self-explanatory so I will make no further comment.



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Thursday, May 17, 2012

"This Is Not How a Free Society Treats People"

There's a great guest post over at Zero Hedge by Simon Black . He is commenting on the proposal by Chuckie (don't get between me and that camera if you know what's good for you) Schumer to impose a punitive exit tax on Americans, natural born or naturalized, who renounce their citizenship. he was prompted to do this after hearing the news that Brazilian-born, naturalized US citizen and Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin had opted to renounce his US citizenship and that doing so might save him $65 million in capital gains taxes when Facebook completes its IPO. From the post:

But no. Saverin left behind a lot of value and decided to move on to greener pastures in Singapore. Now the do-gooders in Congress are cooking up new legislation (the EX-PATRIOT Act) designed to permanently bar ‘renunciants’ like Saverin from re-entering the United States.
It’s interesting that, rather than change their ways of doing business and introducing legislation that provides incentives for productive people to come here and stay here, they maintain policies that chase people away, and introduce new ones to lock the door after they’re gone.
The lesson here (especially for natural-born citizens) is this: simply by accident of birth, you are born with a lifelong obligation that you never signed up for to finance the corrupt misdealings of the political class. And if you choose to abandon this obligation, they will bar you from ever entering your homeland again.
Regardless of what the propaganda says, this is not how a free society treats people. It might look and feel like a representative democracy on the surface, but under the hood it’s the modern day equivalent of feudal serfdom.


Last year 1,800 American citizens opted to do the same thing as Eduardo Saverin. They did the analysis and decided that the burdens imposed by their citizenship outweighed the benefits. IRS overreach in requiring foreign banks to report on accounts held by US citizens are just making it hard for Americans to open bank accounts where they may be living overseas and the US is the only country on the planet that taxes its citizens on their income earned outside the country. 

Eduardo Saverin made a completely rational decision and he should not be vilified or punished for it.
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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Should You Need a Government License to Make an Honest Living?

It seems like in too many cases the answer has become yes. As the following Institute for Justice video will make clear there are far too many occupations that impose licensing requirements that really have nothing to do with public health and safety and everything to do with protecting the turf of incumbents. The video relates how in 1950 only 1 in 20 workers needed a license for any particular occupation. Now it's 1 in 3. The Institute looked at 102 low to mid-level occupations to see what barriers were thrown in front of people who might desire to make a living in those occupations.

In my state, Arizona, for example, to be able to cut and style hair it is necessary to get a license that requires 1,500 hours of instruction. Not usually one to look to federal government requirements as an example, the Federal Aviation Administration actually seems to have the right balance. To qualify for an Airline Transport Pilot's license, an ATP, the requirement is for a total minimum flight time of 1,500 hours. However, unlike the requirement of 1,500 hours to wield a pair of scissors and possibly do a bad haircut, the actual minimum legal requirement for instruction is roughly 55 to 75 hours spent with an instructor, depending on how you interpret Part 61 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR). The rest is minimum logged time in various buckets; total flight time, cross country, night, instrument, etc. Most of the time is individual practice. You move on to various license levels by FAA check rides your instructor signs you off for when you are ready.

To require so much instruction time to cut hair and so little to gain a license to fly an airlplane that is potentially carrying  hundreds of people is ridiculous on its face. 

Now, with that in mind, here is the video.


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Friday, April 27, 2012

The Train Set - Bill Whittle's Afterburner

An interersting piece on the "love of theory" and what evils it can lead to:



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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Video: "If I wanted America to Fail"

Yup. This is how I'd do it too.




(Via Instapundit)
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Monday, April 16, 2012

Is Your State Tax Withholding Actually Going to the State?

Maybe not.
Across the United States more than 2,700 companies are collecting state income taxes from hundreds of thousands of workers – and are keeping the money with the states’ approval, says an eye-opening report published on Thursday.
The report from Good Jobs First, a nonprofit taxpayer watchdog organization funded by Ford, Surdna and other major foundations, identifies 16 states that let companies divert some or all of the state income taxes deducted from workers’ paychecks. None of the states requires notifying the workers, whose withholdings are treated as taxes they paid.
This bribing companies to stay in or relocate to a particular state is galling enough but to use what employees believe are taxes they pay to the state to fund these bribes is immoral. No wonder state governments are always crying poverty and asking us to pay even more.
Read the whole thing.
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Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Diplomad Has Returned

The Diplomad is, was, a dormant blog that I used to read about 6-7 years ago. Well, it’s back. The author is a now-retired US Foreign Service officer whose last post was Indonesia and who was there at the time of the 2004 earthquake/tsunami off the coast of Sumatra. He is a very incisive writer with not a lot good to say about our current foreign policy, liberal elites, NGOs the UN, etc. I’ll be adding him to my blogroll under the Daily Blog Patrol section. Just for an example of his take-no-prisoners style, read this post from Friday. A sample:

I had the misfortune recently of visiting a major university campus. I parked in the faculty lot. My Corvette was the lone representative of American vehicular manufacturing in that lot. I was awash in a tide of cars made in Germany, Japan, and Korea, or by their factories in the US, Mexico, and Canada. That Corvette with its NRA sticker stood out as it was surrounded Alamo-style by these foreign invaders and their Obama and their Co-Exist stickers. Don't get me wrong. I am all for consumers having options, and Americans should have the option to buy foreign cars. I was struck, however, talking to faculty and students by their defense of the Obama bail-out of the car industry and their ostensible support for unionized labor. They could not see the clash between how they spend their own money and how they force taxpayers to spend ours. For whatever reasons, these "highly educated" faculty and students buy cars made overseas or by non-union labor in the US, but insist that the taxpayers subsidize the UAW, which to a large extend caused the near collapse of GM and Chrysler.

You should read the whole thing, of course.

 

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Friday, April 06, 2012

Slowly, Slowly – Bill Whittle

Everyone is familiar with the boiling frog metaphor. A frog tossed into a pot of boiling water will jump out but if you put it in a pot of cold water and turn  on the heat it will die before it realizes it is in trouble. In the video below, Bill Whittle explains how our freedom is gradually disappearing, slowly, slowly in the same way.

 

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Wednesday, April 04, 2012

The Sarah Inside the Liberals' Heads

Behold, the mighty Iowahawk. A sample:

Knockity knock!
 
Oh hi there! I was out shooting caribou on the Arctic Cat and saw your synapse lights on, and so I said to myself, "now, gosh darn it, Sarah, you've been living inside this nice person's cerebral cortex for, what is it, almost two years now? By golly, it's about time you dropped in at their frontal lobe with a plate of your famous homemade Alaska welcome wagon cookies and introduced yourself." So anyhoo, I sure hope you like 'em. Don't want to give out a family recipe, but the secret ingredient is baby seal. I clubbed 'em fresh this morning!
 
Oh my goodness... you look kind of confused. I get that a lot! You were probably thinking, "hey, I only wanted to move next door to Sarah Palin -- now what in the goshdarned heck is she doing inside my brain?" Well ya see, the deal is I'm not Sarah, but boy I gotta tell ya, we sure do get mistaken all the time! No, I'm just a plain ol' homunculus Sarah Palin that your own id created to sublimate your deep-seated psychosexual neuroses. Or so those egghead books say, anyway. But if you ask me that sure sounds like a lot of elite Anti-America liberal professor gobbledegook! By the way, your id says hi.
Read the whole thing.

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Thursday, March 08, 2012

Constrained vs Unconstrained Government - Bill Whittle

Bill Whittle's latest Firewall video is up an is a informative as usual:



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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

One More Reason to Avoid Meetings; They Make You Stupid

I've often felt like I've left meetings with fewer IQ points than when I went into them.  Apparently I'm not imagining it.
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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Steyn - Brokest Nation in History Fusses About Sex

Mark Steyn has an op-ed over at Investors Business Daily that asks the question; why are we having a debate about birth control when we have much bigger problems (try runaway debt growth) than whether people should be paying for their own birth control or whether their employers should be made to pay for it for them?


The received wisdom among media cynics is that Obama has engaged in an ingenious bit of misdirection by seizing on a pop-culture caricature of Republicans and inviting them to live up to it: Those uptight squares with the hang-ups about fornication have decided to force you to lead the same cheerless sex lives as them.

I notice that in their coverage NPR and the evening news shows generally refer to the controversy as being about "contraception," discreetly avoiding mention of sterilization and pharmacological abortion, as if the GOP have finally jumped the shark in order to prevent you jumping anything at all.
It may well be that the Democrats succeed in establishing this narrative. But anyone who falls for it is a sap. In fact, these two issues — the Obama condoms-for-clunkers giveaway and a debt-to-GDP ratio of 900% by 2075 — are not unconnected. 


Misdirection is exactly what it is and if you buy the nonsense that the Republicans are trying to ban birth control then yes, you are a sap. As Steyn points out, Glenn Reynolds has distilled the misdirection technique down perfectly:


 "It's as if we passed a law requiring mosques to sell bacon and then, when people objected, responded by saying 'What's wrong with bacon? You're trying to ban bacon!!!!'"


Indeed, as the man himself would say.  Read the whole thing (both).

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Government: Where Does the Money Come From and Where Does It Go?

In a new Firewall video entitled The Vote Pump, Bill Whittle explains where the funding for government comes from and where it goes. Actual government, incuding defense, is actually only around a third of all expenditures, The rest is entitlement spending. We can't solve the problem unless we address that.



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Wednesday, January 04, 2012

High Occupancy Vehicles

And they make their own HOV lanes too................





All taken in front of "Big C" department store, Nakhon Sawan, Thailand January 4, 2012/2555.
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