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Archive for October, 2008

A confession

October 29, 2008 5 comments

You may have heard the news that Kay Hagan has been accused of accepting godless money.

Everyone is truly shocked, but I find myself having to make a confession. I have, on numerous occasions, given entities godless money without informing them that it was anything other than good Christian money.

I’ll wait for the shock to wear off before continuing.

Since this is an important issue to all Americans, I thought I would help you out. Here’s a list of those entities to which I have funneled godless cash:

Albertson’s
Rosauers
Hastings
Barnes and Noble
Gamestop
Barack Obama & Joe Biden
Jon Tester
Apple
Amazon
Allstate
Valve
Netflix
Domino’s
Bresnan
Red Cross
Target
Borders
Subway
Northwest Energy
Verizon

That’s not a complete list. I’ll try to get it up to date and accurate. Also, Zoot Enterprises and Montana State University have been implicated in a scheme to launder money through me over the past several years, taking good American money and turning it into godless money. No doubt investigations will follow this bombshell.

Categories: 2008 elections, Religion

I think they're on to something

October 29, 2008 1 comment

I vote that the GOP use this strategy from now on. Stop campaigning and just think happy thoughts.

Incidentally, this would be a novel interpretation of election fraud. Oh my, that touchscreen voting machine just switched my vote from Obama to McCain! It’s a miracle! God has revealed his choice.

Damn

October 27, 2008 Leave a comment

Biden says Obama isn’t going to turn the U.S. into Sweden.

Everyone put away your lederhosen, we’ll have to wait for the next election.

Categories: 2008 elections, Silliness

Fraud!

October 23, 2008 Leave a comment

Over at The Corner:

Number of posts regarding the lack of security on Obama’s online donation page today: 10.
Number of Corner readers who made fraudulent donations to Obama: 5+.
The fact that it took 9 posts on the subject before Cornerites realized they were encouraging illegal activity: priceless.

So today’s major accomplishments were that they donated an unspecified amount of money to a Democrat’s campaign and successfully violated federal election laws. Gee, I wonder why their side isn’t winning?

Categories: 2008 elections

Blinkered

October 21, 2008 1 comment

The reaction to Colin Powell’s endorsement of Obama is amusing. You’ve all seen Limbaugh’s reaction. Here’s Buchanan’s similar reaction:

Gen. Powell does not deny it, contending only that race was not the only or decisive factor. “If I had only that fact in mind,” he told Tom Brokaw, “I could have done this six, eight, ten months ago.”

Yet, in hailing Barack as a “transformational figure” whose election would “electrify our country … (and) the world,” Powell seems to testify to the centrality of Barack’s ethnicity to his decision.

For what else is there about this freshman senator, who has no significant legislative accomplishment, to transform our politics and to electrify the world, other than the fact that he would be the nation’s first African-American president?

It’s almost as if Buchanan didn’t hear Powell credit Obama’s ability to inspire people, the quality of intellect, and the inclusiveness of his campaign. But I’m sure he did, given that he said that just before the quote about him being transformational figure. Now it’s one thing for him to disagree with Powell’s assessment of Obama. It’s another for him to believe that he’s not arguing in good faith, that’s it’s not possible for him to honestly believe that those qualities, in addition to Obama’s race, drove that conclusion.

Buchanan’s not an idiot, but he didn’t even try to discount Powell’s explanation of his decision. Given the other prominent conservatives endorsing Obama, he’d really have to work to come up with a plausible argument. He and other Republicans are simply smearing Powell using the same identity politics they’re ostensibly condemning. It’s not pretty.

Categories: 2008 elections

Underestimated

October 13, 2008 1 comment

I made a lot over Congress not being able to pass anything better than the bailout bill we got. It seems that world events have conspired to push Paulson towards what looks like the favored solution of most economists (partial nationalization and recapitalization) sans Congressional sign-off. So, hurdle cleared, I guess. I didn’t see that one coming; he is a Bush administration official, after all (ambiguity completely intended).

This is pretty seriously over my head, but…good…I think.

Categories: Economy

Was "liberty" ever here?

October 13, 2008 3 comments

I must say, there’s something I don’t get about sentiments like this.

Libertarians dislike coercion, meaning government compelling them to do something they don’t want to do. This typically involves taxes paying for various facets of the welfare state. And while most of our political discourse is pragmatic – involving solutions to problems and debating their effectiveness – this view includes philosophical arguments about how big government should be (using government as proxy for coercion, that is).

Here’s what I don’t understand. A society with rules acceptable (generally, not absolutely) to libertarians has never existed. Not only has it never existed, I don’t believe it’s even been attempted. Even if you regard this country at its inception as close, the current welfare state (or even a more minimal version of it) is hardly unconstitutional. Yes, I know people make those arguments, but I haven’t seen a convincing one.

Further, the prospect that such a society could exist seems dismal. We’re social creatures. We are equipped to exist in a society with inter-dependencies and rules of conduct for the benefit of as many members of that as possible. Put crudely, Doug may be annoyed that he’s coerced into supporting certain policies, but they don’t threaten his livelihood. Removing welfare state policies will threaten the livelihoods of people (whether you think that’s morally correct situation or not). A libertarian would probably take issue with that, but remember that all I really need for that argument is the perception or short term realization of a threat. And does anyone really think libertarians could win an election on a platform of abolishing medicare and social security? They’d be demagogued right out the door.

With that state of affairs, how can we get very far from the welfare state? There’s an upper limit (which is far from where we are, given that Europe is still rolling along) and there’s a lower limit (perhaps closer to our current state), but a libertarian society is not within that range.

So given that this is an exercise in futility, why the complaining? If your preferred model of society is simply an impossibility, doesn’t that suggest a problem with your preference? The end result of communism sounds wonderful, but given that it’s an unworkable model of society, why would you advocate for it?

It’s not like I’m saying libertarianism should be ejected from the public sphere. Arguing for smaller government policies will always be one side of an argument and it will be right sometimes (how often you think so would be a determinant of your political worldview). You could get fairly close to a libertarian model regarding social and cultural issues, given that there’s less in the way of direct negative consequences for removing coercion and the arguments seem generally fuzzier.

I’m just saying, if your philosophical starting point for a model of society is “get the hell out of my business,” you’re doomed to failure. It’s simply not workable.

Categories: Domestic Policy

Nerd hype

October 13, 2008 Leave a comment

I’ve been thinking about buying a MacBook for the last couple months. I’ve been wanting a laptop and to mess around with OS X and some apps for it for quite a while now. So I started doing some research and found that MacBooks were due for an update in the near future. Since I don’t really need one, I decided to wait for those updates, deciding to browse sites like Mac Rumors (and its forum) for news about any updates.

All I can say is, those people are a little nuts. I know Apple fanboys have a reputation and Apple’s good at hyping their releases, but this is pretty impressive. I mean, there’s over 1500 comments on an item with alleged pictures of the new MacBook case. Not the actually notebook, but the case. And let’s face it, besides the fact that it’s aluminum, it’s not that interesting. I can’t say I’ve kept above it; I’ve been reading that site regularly for a month or two and I don’t really care about Apple otherwise. The rumored updates are being announced tomorrow, so it’s finally coming to an end.

I would guess this isn’t surprising to a lot of other people, but it’s fascinating to me. Apple makes decent products, but they’re not that impressive.

Categories: Tech

Hitchens endorses Obama

October 13, 2008 Leave a comment

Didn’t see that coming:

It therefore seems to me that the Republican Party has invited not just defeat but discredit this year, and that both its nominees for the highest offices in the land should be decisively repudiated, along with any senators, congressmen, and governors who endorse them.

I used to call myself a single-issue voter on the essential question of defending civilization against its terrorist enemies and their totalitarian protectors, and on that “issue” I hope I can continue to expose and oppose any ambiguity. Obama is greatly overrated in my opinion, but the Obama-Biden ticket is not a capitulationist one, even if it does accept the support of the surrender faction, and it does show some signs of being able and willing to profit from experience. With McCain, the “experience” is subject to sharply diminishing returns, as is the rest of him, and with Palin the very word itself is a sick joke. One only wishes that the election could be over now and a proper and dignified verdict rendered, so as to spare democracy and civility the degradation to which they look like being subjected in the remaining days of a low, dishonest campaign.

Hitchens is still frustratingly obtuse regarding terrorism, but he can’t stomach McCain and Palin. Which is the rational reaction to them.

Categories: 2008 elections

The crucial Domino's vote

October 9, 2008 3 comments

I would just like to inform you that of those who have ordered Domino’s pizza recently and completed their inexplicable election survey, 44% support Obama and 34% support McCain. This is roughly in line with Obama’s leads in the national tracking polls.

So, while some liberals may like upscale, elitist, arugula-using fine dining establishments, some of us enjoy crappy pizza.

I think we need to petition to include this survey in Nate Silver’s model. I mean, can it really be worse than Zogby Interactive?

Categories: 2008 elections, Silliness
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