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Monthly Archives: December 2012

Even More of the New Normal

December 31st, 2012 - 1:14 pm

More on ObamaCare vs Jobs:

About a quarter of businesses surveyed by consulting firm Mercer don’t offer health coverage to employees who work at least 30 hours a week. Half of them plan to make changes so fewer employees work that many hours.

The health care law will particularly affect companies with 40 to 45 workers that plan to expand and hire. Many are holding off so they don’t cross the 50-employee threshold, says Christine Ippolito, principal at Compass Workforce Solutions, a human resource consulting firm in Melville, N.Y.

Keeping small businesses small is what got Big Business on board with ObamaCare.

The New Tyranny (Just Like the Old Tyranny)

December 31st, 2012 - 11:21 am

So the NYT thought it would be a good idea to smear this pile of feces on their op-ed page today:

AS the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions…

Our obsession with the Constitution has saddled us with a dysfunctional political system, kept us from debating the merits of divisive issues and inflamed our public discourse.

Want to know the kicker? The author of this feces, Louis Michael Seidman, is a professor of constitutional law. At Georgetown, no less. Which is why he really ought to know better than to try and (ahem) pass along (ahem) nuggets like these:

No sooner was the Constitution in place than our leaders began ignoring it. John Adams supported the Alien and Sedition Acts, which violated the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech. Thomas Jefferson thought every constitution should expire after a single generation. He believed the most consequential act of his presidency — the purchase of the Louisiana Territory — exceeded his constitutional powers.

We have a Constitution precisely because imperfect men — sometimes even well-intentioned ones — will trample on the liberties of others.

Seidman’s solution is to give those imperfect men, especially the ones with bad intentions, even more discretionary power. I dare anyone to look at Washington today and tell me honestly that’s a good idea.

The Other New Normal (Which Isn’t So New)

December 31st, 2012 - 10:36 am

Here’s where we stand on the fiscal cliff at the moment:

The deal in the works would return tax rates on families making over $450,000 to 39.6 percent. The tax on estates worth more than $5 million would increase to 40 percent. And unemployment benefits would continue for one year.

The officials say the White House and Republicans are at an impasse over what to do about automatic, across-the-board spending cuts set to begin taking effect on Jan. 1. Democrats want to put off the cuts for one year. [Emphasis added, but duh.]

The “one year” being 2000-never.

The New Normal

December 31st, 2012 - 10:07 am

Obamanomics isn’t working:

In November 1982, unemployment hit its postwar high of 10.8 percent, far higher than the current rate of 7.7 percent. But the total share of workers who are either unemployed or receiving disability payments from the government totals 12.6 percent today.

The steady rise in disability claims presents something of a puzzle. Medicine has improved substantially. Far fewer of us labor in dangerous industrial jobs like the ones that originally motivated disability insurance. The rate of deaths due to injuries has plummeted. Behavior that can cause disability, such as alcohol use and smoking, has declined substantially. American age-adjusted mortality rates are far lower than in the past.

The aging of the baby-boom generation is often cited as one explanation for the rise in disability insurance rolls. Yet the economists Mark Duggan and Scott Imberman estimate that “this factor can explain just 15.5 percent of the growth in the likelihood that a nonelderly adult male receives DI benefits.”

The two primary alternative hypotheses for the rise are that either work has become less attractive or that disability insurance has become more attractive and available.

Work has become “less attractive?” More like “less available.”

The Fiscal Cliff for Fun and Profit

December 30th, 2012 - 1:11 pm

Laws are made by men, not gods — but you’d never guess that from the talk coming out of (and about) Washington these days.

Democrats behave as though the Clinton tax rates were carved into stone by lightning on Mount Sinai. Republicans want you to believe the same thing about the tax rates enacted just a few years later under President Bush. And the Fiscal Cliff? “Why, that’s a geological formation — an act of God if there ever was one. It’s not our fault if we’re going over it!”

Right. And I’m the Pope of Siam.

Here’s what neither side wants you to remember: No matter what the rates are, our income tax code is a mess. It’s corrupt. And it will never raise enough revenue to pay for all the government we’ve saddled ourselves with.

Those Clinton tax rates the Democrats are so fond of only ever raised about two-thirds of the revenue the Democrats promised us would be collected. And that was during a perfect storm of tax collection. The 1992 recession was short, sharp, and extremely beneficial to our national economy. It set loose a wave of creative destruction which helped set the stage for the information revolution later in the decade. A GOP Congress in 1994 guaranteed enough gridlock (and, briefly, enough spending restraint) to keep things humming even louder. The Y2K bug — remember that? — and the dot com bubble further juiced capital expenditures while filling the Treasury’s coffers with capital gains.

Even so, those magical Clinton tax rates never fulfilled the Democrats’ promises of 1993. I’m repeating this point because I want you to remember it.

Bush and the GOP cut tax rates twice, in 2001 and 2003. Despite the 9/11 attacks, the bursting of the dot com bubble, and a pretty serious recession, tax revenues eventually surpassed those collected under the Clinton tax code. Everything must have been rosy, right?

Wrong.

There are things the Republicans want you to forget, too. The GOP tried to keep things goosed by going on an unprecedented spending spree. At the Fed, Alan Greenspan was happy to play along by keeping interest rates unprecedentedly low. (Both precedents would be very quickly surpassed by the Democrats and Ben Bernanke.) And Clinton’s Community Reinvestment Act added to the fun, by sweeping us all up into a happy, happy housing bubble. Tax revenues guttered when the bubble popped, and have stayed there since. Obamanomics, which consists of standing on the economy’s throat while pounding its face with a moneybag, hasn’t helped.

What neither side wants you to remember is the damage they’ve done to the once-beautiful tax code bequeathed to us by Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill. It wasn’t perfect — the AMT and too many deductions remained — but it was a big step in the right direction. The right direction being, if you want to collect taxes, make them simple and make them cheap. After the Tax Reform Act, collections briefly and barely dipped, then soared.

But, as Glen Reynolds likes to say, that didn’t present enough opportunities for graft. Clinton and Bush loaded up the tax code with deductions and credits and loopholes and incentives and subsidies and all the rest, until the giant wheezing beast interferes with every economic decision, big or small.

Politicians love this crap — little men doling out big favors. So do Big Business and their K Street cronies — entrenched interests squeezing out competitors via the tax code, like a boa constrictor smothers its prey. The rest of us? We’re the ones getting squeezed.

So Obama and Boehner can negotiate right down to the wire whether rates will go up on those making $250,000, or on those making $500,000, or maybe it’s on those making $400,000. Or $402,223 and 18 cents, but only if they were born on even-numbered Wednesdays, otherwise it’s $402,223 and 19 cents. It’s all nonsense.

Our problems remain threefold:

1. The promised taxes will not be collected.

2. No level of taxation will ever pay for our unfunded entitlements.

3. The system has become irresponsible and corrupt.

And if you think that #3 might have something kind of causal relationship with #1 and #2, please treat yourself to a well-deserved cookie. You have the kind of simple and honest insight that is as foreign to Washington as a pulled pork sandwich is to a mosque.

There are a few in the GOP who are willing to talk honestly about our spending problem. Their reward for what amounted to idle talk was to lose seats in both houses of Congress, and the reelection of the Six Trillion Dollar Man to the White House. The Democrats have a plan to just tax and spend the crap out of shit until prosperity returns, then blame the Republicans when it doesn’t. The Democrats are — and this just goes to show how corrupt the system has become — the good guys.

And the rest of us? The inside of that boa constrictor is stating to look pretty good. At the very least, it’s certainly close.

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Begun the Drone War Has

December 23rd, 2012 - 11:40 am

Trifecta: Are you ready for domestic counter-drone drones?

Your Sunday Morning Dose of… Stuff

December 23rd, 2012 - 9:32 am

It took almost ten years, but I finally contracted a bug as nasty as the Happy Fun Virus of 2003. As I sit here unshaven in my PJ bottoms, dirty t-shirt, and rumpled bathrobe — a look that says, “I’m not even trying hard enough today to give up” — please enjoy this classic post.

Here’s what the Happy Fun Virus is like.

You wake up one morning, and. . . scratch that. At no point during this Hell Bout are you ever fully awake. Instead, you feel as though every bit of cotton you’ve ever pulled from every bottle of aspirin you’ve ever opened has been re-packaged inside your mouth and nose and throat and lungs and brain.

Let’s start again.

At some point, later than you feel is decent but earlier than you know is right, you’ll stumble out of bed. Literally, stumble. Your legs aren’t as long as they once were, or maybe Evil Silent Contractors came in during the night and lowered the floor. They also made it uneven. And itchier. Put on a pair of socks or slippers before venturing anywhere, assuming you remembered to take them off your feet before getting into bed the night before. You’ll find you’re forgetting all sorts of stuff. One morning last week, I woke up with a toothbrush in my mouth. And wearing pants.

Once you have your feet properly protected from the Awfully Itchy Carpet Fibers of Doom (Or At Least of Mild-Yet-Maddening Discomfort), make your way to the kitchen and pour yourself a large glass of orange juice. Don’t worry about the brand, or even if it’s properly chilled. These things won’t matter, since everything you put in your mouth will seem to have the same flavor, texture, and temperature as warm bowl of phlegm. The OJ pulp may disgust you, but let me tell you right now: Don’t even think about scrambled eggs. Besides, the pulp might just convince your body that you’re giving it solid food more recently than a week ago Sunday.

Head downstairs to the office, where your supply of Dayquil, Benadryl, codeine cough syrup, Vitamin C Pills for Sickly Larger Breeds of Horses and Smaller Trained Elephants, Kleenex, baby wipes (flu-ridden Arafat only), warm Gatorade, emergency backup Kleenex, and Tylenol are – all the modern accouterments for the very modern flu. I hope you’ve remembered to put on your robe, because it’s a very long trip back up the stairs.

At some point after drinking your OJ, you’ll have to pee. Your urine will be of the exact same color, consistency, temperature and odor as last night’s chicken soup. Only more so. Do not be alarmed – but do turn on the fan and open the window.

After taking all your pills, you may be tempted to step outside to light a small cigar, just to see if you can taste something, anything at all. Don’t. Please don’t. First, you’ll get a chill so bad your entire body will actually convulse, since you lack the fine motor skills necessary for shivering. Second, it is strangely possible for the merest whiff of smoke to taste and feel like a mouthful of overheated phlegm. You’ll also trigger a coughing fit so violent as to be a tsunami risk in coastal areas, or cause avalanches if you live in the mountains. Pray with me for the skiers trapped under cubic hectares of snow in Aspen last week.

Now, go back to your office and sit down. Stare at the monitor for a bit, trying to make sense of the funny dancing words on your screen. At the precise moment you think you’ve reached that blissful time when you’ve put forth enough effort to give up being involved in the world and saved up enough energy to make it to the sofa, that’s when the real coughing will begin.

The really very quite real coughing.

It starts low in your body, far lower than your lungs reach. It might, in fact, be so low that it’s starting in the toes of any downstairs neighbor you might have. At the very least, Satan is pounding on his ceiling with the end of a broomstick, shouting for you to please turn down that racket.

Is it a coincidence that “racket” and “racking” have the same root? Hardly. Your coughs will seem to have the same, pleasing, predictable rhythm as simultaneous concerts of Wagner and the Sex Pistols, using the same music hall, and each using amplifiers provided by Spinal Tap’s road manager. This, my friend, is a racking cough. During a pause – probably sometime no sooner than a week from Monday – lift up that t-shirt you’ve been wearing all week, and examine the line between your belly and ribs. You’ll discover a line of eggplant-colored bruises there. Feel the burn?

But that’s nothing compared to what’s going on in your mouth. All that coughing has to bring up something, after all, and all those yummy somethings are going to end up in that most sensitive of organs called your mouth.

Warm somethings. Wet somethings. Fibrous somethings. Warm, wet, fibrous somethings the size of Junior Mints. If you’ve reached Day Three of the Hell Cold, you’ll have given up being polite and spitting into a Kleenex. You’ve used up three boxes so far, anyway, and making nice little packages of moistness just won’t seem worth the bother or expense. Instead, lean over and spit right into the trashcan – a trashcan which you’ve turned into a colony of warm, wet, fibrous somethings so alive and teeming that it makes Dr. Frankenstein’s fifth grade Petri dish Science Fair experiment seem positively wholesome in comparison – and that’s just the feeling emanating from in there.

Under no circumstance at all, not even if Gestapo interrogators armed with staple guns beg you to, are you to look into the trashcan.

Spend the rest of the day napping, coughing, spitting, wiping, blowing, napping again, and spitting, so that you might save up enough energy to be truly miserable at night when you’re trying to sleep in your actual bed. Repeat this process each day until you’re feeling a bit better, like the first touch of spring is in the air, as if there’s a soft Bossa Nova playing somewhere (maybe “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars”), something light in the feet and in your heart, a bit of the carefree energy of youth and promise, and that joy of simply living and breathing and doing – then eject a three-foot stream of sandy green goo from your left nostril and pass out again.

Two Outta Three…

December 18th, 2012 - 1:23 pm

Trifecta: John Boehner — man or mouse or even smaller mouse?

Pegging the Creepometer

December 18th, 2012 - 12:58 pm

Joe Manchin sounds a lot like Big Brother in this press release:

The President called me this afternoon. We agree that as Americans and parents, all of our children belong to all of us – and we must work together to keep our precious children safe.

Back. The F***. Off. Not one bit of my children belongs to you or to anybody in DC.

I can’t be the only one who sees it that way.

He’s Ba-ack

December 18th, 2012 - 12:26 pm

No, I’m not dead. Not even on vacation. I did burn up a couple spare vacation days over a long weekend, during which I managed to catch one extremely nasty cold or flu or something. Knew I was in trouble Sunday morning, when I coughed up what appeared to be an entire litter of live tadpoles. Monday was… worse.

Oh, well — at least I didn’t cough up Peach a la Frog.

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And now I have tons of year-end paperwork to fill out, so check in shortly for more updates.

Dude, You’re Not Getting a Dell

December 16th, 2012 - 3:02 pm

Dell is out of mobile:

Dell is definitely pulling the plug on the smartphone business, globally. A tough decision, leaving a market that is expected to reach $150.3 billion in 2014, according to MarketsandMarkets.

However, Jeff Clarke, the head of Dell’s consumer business, confirmed yesterday at the Dell World conference, that there’s no way they’ll jump back into the ring anytime soon. “It needs a lot of investments to really be successful,” told me Clark.

Mobile, of course, is where the growth is in computing and Dell isn’t even on the sidelines anymore. If I were Michael Dell, I’d shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders.

The Week in Blogs

December 15th, 2012 - 5:00 am
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Friday Night Videos

December 14th, 2012 - 10:05 pm
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It wasn’t easy turning me into a Madonna fan — and even then it never quite took. Her first hit, “Holiday,” was a third-rate ripoff of The Go-Go’s far superior “Vacation.” And as a Go-Go’s fan, I resented her for it. “Like A Virgin” didn’t do anything for me, either. I saw some promise in “Material Girl,” but the promise wasn’t kept very long, as it would be five more years before she was able to catch my ear again.

But then…

From 1989 to 1992, Madonna put out a series of albums and singles I still find myself listening to, sometimes even queuing them up on purpose. Like A Prayer was the first of the three albums, followed in pretty short order by I’m Breathless (“Music From and Inspired by the Film Dick Tracy“) and Erotica.

I don’t know who thought it would ever work, pairing Madonna with Broadway songwriter Stephen Sondheim for the Dick Tracy soundtrack, but it turned out to be an inspired bit of stunt-casting. Erotica was accompanied by Madonna’s notorious Sex coffee-table book, which signaled the start of her rapid descent into sad self-parody. Oh, well — I still got three pretty decent albums out of her.

So let’s start tonight with the single that caused a bunch of commotion when it came out. I didn’t understand the commotion then, and I don’t understand it now. But I know a good pop single when I hear one, and this is the one that turned me, very briefly, into something like a Madonna fan.

Google Maps Coming (Back) to iOS

December 13th, 2012 - 1:25 pm

A couple months ago, iOS 6 users lost Google’s wonderful Maps app, when Apple switched to its own homegrown solution. Te results were… not so good. Apple’s app is fine — excellent, even. But the data can be real crap, just like Google’s was when the debuted it all those years ago.

These things take time, and iOS users aren’t all that patient. To Apple’s credit, they’ve sacked those responsible and begun a crash program to fix what’s wrong.

So why did Apple ever give Google the boot in the first place?

In a word: Features.

Google refused to update its iOS Maps with things that people have come to expect, like turn-by-turn navigation. Siri integration wasn’t happening, either. Google was hoping, it seems, to drive iPhone users onto the Android platform by offering a much-better-than-iOS maps app.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but you can understand Apple’s rush to give users something better. Sure, maybe there was some Apple hubris involved, too — except maybe for the maybe part. But the fact remains that Apple remained at a competitive disadvantage on maps, as long as Google was in the driver’s seat.

Now here we are, just three months later, and Google has introduced a new Maps app for iPhone, with an iPad version to follow soon. Google’s new app features turn-by-turn and everything else they’d long denied to iOS users. By the few reports I’ve seen, it’s a better app than Apple’s, and it’s sure damn sure going to work better.

Two questions:

Why did Google do it?

Why did Apple approve it?

Let’s tackle the second question first.

Apple didn’t need to approve the new Google Maps for download in the App Store. Yet they did, even though it’s a better product than their own — and will generate revenue directly for Google, and not for Apple. The answer is easy: Apple is devoted to providing the best user experience possible. (Whether or not they always achieve it is subject to debate; their dedication to it is not.) When the scale of the iOS Maps app become obvious, Apple created an entirely new section of the App Store devoted just to third-party maps, and then promoted the heck out of it at their own expense. That’s a pretty massive mea culpa. To Apple, Google’s new app is just another third-party app.

But why did Google do it? Why, after years of foot-dragging on providing iOS users with a better app, did they suddenly and rapidly conjure one up? Two words: Revenue and data. Google earns its keep pushing targeted ads at your eyeballs, and it needs your search data to do it. Not having a Map app cut them off from hundreds of millions of search-hungry iOS users. If getting them back means providing a better app than Google provides for its own Android customers, that’s just business.

See, so long as Google was the default map option for iOS, Google held the strings. It seems almost paradoxical, but Apple doing their own app in-house fostered more competition for users’ eyeballs, not less.

All of this goes to the wisdom of Google ever getting into the mobile OS business in the first place. Android has been an expensive proposition for them. Google had to spend all the money developing (and continuing to develop) Android. Then they give it away for free. And then spent $12 billion buying Motorola to defend it. Then they went and got themselves kicked off of the most valuable mobile platform (iOS) in yet another attempt to defend Android. It’s been a huge money-loser for Google — so far.

Can they earn some of that money back? I dunno, but after I get a chance to put the new Google Maps through its paces, maybe I’ll have an answer to that one.

Somebody Has to be the Serfs

December 13th, 2012 - 12:09 pm

So Sarah Hoyt took my “progressivism is feudalism” thing and ran with it. It’s a must-read.

The Law of Totally Intended Consequences

December 13th, 2012 - 10:45 am

The ObamaCare hits just keep coming:

While subsidies in the law will shield some people, other consumers who make too much for assistance are in for “premium rate shock,” Mark Bertolini, who runs the third-biggest U.S. health-insurance company, told analysts yesterday at a conference in New York.

Remember, Obama is just spreadin’ the wealth around a little bit because it’s a good thing.

After you wipe away your tears, remember that this particular wealth transfer is on top of the increased payroll taxes and the increases on capital gains that “the rich” will begin paying on January 1.

Let me quote you one more line from the report:

The prospect has spurred discussion of having Congress delay or phase in parts of the law, he said.

It feels just a wee tiny bit like maybe this is a conversation lawmakers should have been having back in 2009, you think?

There’s a Chance He Means It

December 13th, 2012 - 9:40 am

I have no words:

“We’ve been disappointed that Obama has been a tepid regulator” in his first term, [OMB Watch regulatory director] Randy Rabinowitz said, adding that she hopes the administration “moves more vigorously to protect the public from harm” in a second term.

I suppose in the way that I’m a tepid drinker or Glenn Reynolds is a tepid blogger or Bill Whittle is a tepid talker or Nancy Pelosi is a tepid Botoxer or…

Feel free to finish up by adding your own.

Bailout Nation

December 13th, 2012 - 8:14 am

Blue Cross is sitting on a lot of cash — $3.9 billion or so. And that makes California regulators sad:

“Blue Shield is sitting on a huge surplus that is beyond what is required or necessary,” said Laurie Sobel, a senior attorney for Consumers Union in San Francisco. “It should be used to hold down rate increases when it hits these extraordinary levels.”

And what happens when the reserve runs out as ObamaCare kicks in and makes everything more expensive?

Shut up, racist.

It Isn’t a Rhetorical Question

December 13th, 2012 - 7:07 am

Trifecta: The debt, the spending, the regulations — is this Administration trying to destroy America on purpose?

Remember: It’s OK When They Do It

December 12th, 2012 - 3:38 pm

Ed Kilgore:

It’s kind of important to understand that this total hostility to the labor movement—the kind of thing that makes it unremarkable when a Nikki Haley flatly tells unions (who are still, so far as I know, legal everywhere) to stay out of her state as though they were crime rings—is relatively new, and very new outside the Deep South. No, Republicans as a whole were never big fans of labor, but you didn’t have to be a union-hater to call yourself a Republican, and a self-proclaimed “moderate” like Rick Snyder would have regarded the fanatics of Americans for Prosperity as troglodytes and political poison. Lest we forget, in 1976, The Sainted One Himself, Ronald Reagan, chose a man (Sen. Richard Schweiker of Pennsylvania) with a 91% voting rating from the AFL-CIO’s Committee on Political Education to be his pre-convention running-mate. Yes, this was an audacious move designed to create a mind-bending ideological coalition ticket between opposite wings of the GOP, but the point is there was a pro-labor wing of the GOP that people like Reagan not only had to respect but actually wanted to pull into their tent. All that is way gone, and Chait’s right, it’s why Republicans feel no compunction about picking up the nearest weapon and going for the kill.

Enough with the rhetorical violence, Ed. You’re going to get someone hurt.

The Fix is In

December 12th, 2012 - 2:20 pm

The key graf in the Menendez illegal-immigrant-sex-offender-intern story:

Authorities in Hudson County notified ICE agents in early October that they suspected Sanchez was an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender and who may be eligible to be deported. ICE agents in New Jersey notified superiors at the Homeland Security Department because they considered it a potentially high profile arrest, and DHS instructed them not to arrest Sanchez until after the November election, one U.S. official told the AP. ICE officials complained that the delay was inappropriate, but DHS directed them several times not to act, the official said.

Mustn’t embarrass members of the Inner Party.

The Truth is Quieter than Fiction

December 12th, 2012 - 1:00 pm

Patterico on one of the now-predictable responses to the Crowder assault:

So what does Marcy Wheeler of Empty Wheel do? Immediately accuse the accusers. She writes a post titled “Breitbart Folks Appear to Fake Violence in Lansing.” She immediately labels the destruction of a tent as a probable false flag, and then updates with: “Here’s a picture of Steve Crowder deliberately provoking peaceful union people from before he was claiming to have been attacked.” This update was made before video evidence emerged that proved Crowder was attacked.

Keep in mind: Crowder has actually been repeatedly punched at this point. But literally before any actual evidence is known, Wheeler is smearing Crowder, labeling him the aggressor, and turning it into a political issue that totally rewrites the narrative.

We used to think of this sort of thing as cute. Not cute-like-a-kitten cute, but in the vein of, “It’s cute how they actually seem to believe this stuff inside of their tiny circle of total wankers.”

But the wankers are in charge now. They’re in charge at the White House, they’re in charge on half of Capitol Hill, they’ll soon be in charge of the Supreme Court, and — most importantly — they’re in charge of the Mainstream Media.

So it’s no longer some insular circle of wankers peddling crap. The crap is now the narrative. It’s no longer enough to get the truth out. You’ve got to sell that truth like it’s the hottest new sitcom pilot. You’ve got to make that truth sing. It has to tell a story. You have to be louder and more entertaining and more truthful than the wankers.

Because otherwise, it doesn’t matter what really happened in Lansing yesterday. It doesn’t matter what happens in Washington tomorrow. The only thing that matters is what people believe, and how far along the road to ruin that will take us.

The New World Disorder

December 12th, 2012 - 11:20 am

Trifecta: Welcome to 2030 and the end of American hegemony.

Why Progs Are Inherently Vile Exhibit #1,000,006

December 12th, 2012 - 10:26 am

You might have caught Max Read’s screed over at Glenn’s or Michelle’s, but something about it caught my eye:

Good, serious progressives are supposed to condemn violence as a political tactic, because it’s wrong and in many cases counterproductive. But do we really need to condemn the union protestor who socked Fox News comedian Steven Crowder in the jaw?

“In many cases counterproductive.”

“In many cases.”

That’s an interesting choice of words.

What about the times when violence is politically productive? Is it OK then? Do we just need to up the violence to the point where people will cower at the bloody majesty of the vile Progressive agenda?

I think Read’s problem with the assault on Crowder is that it didn’t accomplish anything. It wasn’t productive. You have to wonder if he’d nuke Lansing and everyone in it, if it would result in single payer health insurance or free Head Start lunches for hungry Gawker editors.

Just breaking a few eggs is all.

Vile Progs Lie, But I Repeat Myself

December 12th, 2012 - 9:04 am

Yesterday “Carlito” commented on my post about the Federal government’s hiring frenzy:

Typical anti-Obama bullshit.

Duh . . . how many federal employees retired or otherwise left federal employment during the same time period?

You do know that you have to subtract those people from the equation, don’t you?
It’s called third grade math!

You want numbers, Carlito? OK, I have some numbers for you. This chart is rather illuminating.

Wow. And we can’t pin the blame on the military, as vile progs are wont to do, because military employment has been essentially flat since 2009 — and is slated to shrink. Minus the Post Office, which is supposedly a private entity, total federal employment is up almost a quarter million.

Which is just typical Obama bullshit, Carlito.

Make Them Own It

December 12th, 2012 - 6:50 am

Here’s Drudge below-the-fold this morning.

What’s it all about? Here’s the first story from the AP, courtesy of Hot Air:

Your medical plan is facing an unexpected expense, so you probably are, too. It’s a new, $63-per-head fee to cushion the cost of covering people with pre-existing conditions under President Obama’s health care overhaul.

The charge, buried in a recent regulation, works out to tens of millions of dollars for the largest companies, employers say. Most of that is likely to be passed on to workers.

Peanuts compared to what ObamaCare is already doing to your premiums, but it’s a far cry from the $2,500 a year Obama promised to save you and your family.

This next story is especially sweet:

In a letter to Majority Leader Harry Reid, 18 Democrat senators and senators-elect have asked for “a delay in the implementation” of the Obamacare medical device tax. Like most of the significant tax increases in Obamacare, the medical device tax is scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2013, conveniently after the 2012 presidential election.

Each of the 18 Democrat signatories voted for or supported Obamacare in the first place. And now they want a sweetheart exemption from one of its most onerous provisions.

Screw them. The Democrats wanted power over your health care, and they took it. Now they must bear the responsibility that power entails.

And He’s Off

December 11th, 2012 - 1:54 pm

Trifecta: Jim DeMint to Heritage — did he cash out or did he betray the cause?

An Open Memo

December 11th, 2012 - 1:17 pm

To: GOP House
From: VodkaPundit
Re: Failed negotiations

Pass a budget. Include a permanent extension of current tax rates. Go home.

That is all.

Growth Industry

December 11th, 2012 - 8:57 am

Cancerous growth industry:

In the 1,420 days since he took the oath of office, the federal government has daily hired on average 101 new employees. Every day. Seven days a week. All 202 weeks. That makes 143,000 more federal workers than when Obama talked forever on that cold day in January of 2009.

I don’t want to hear one more word about sustainability.