I found one guy who gets it, who understands liberals and uses Alinsky's rule about ridiculing your opponents to show them for the idiots they are.

This guy, Evan Sayet, brings up one of the questions that has been bothering me for quite some time, that being how is it that these liberal morons rise to the top considering they really don't know anything?

The answer: "Liberals reach the tops of their profession because they enter only those professions where you don't ever actually DO ANYTHING. When you don't do anything, what can go wrong?!"

When you think about it, he's right.

I could go on, but I'll let him explain it instead.


(H/T Instapundit)
Well, Glenn, it's more than an aversion to dating the guys (nerds) in those science, technology, engineering majors. It could be the wiring of the brain, made more manifest during puberty.

I experienced a "paradigm" shift in my thinking with the 1992 book Brain Sex by geneticist Anne Moirs and BBC writer David Jessel. A very competent review by Thomas Jackson who writes at American Renaissance can be found here.

If I were to give a college commencement speech, I'd jokingly tell the students how the girls who dated and copulated with the football players would be marrying the engineering nerds--they'd be the ones making the money. I just hope not all of them will have contracted STDs.
More than once over the years we have heard various members of the Left make the claim that the U.S. Constitution is a "living document", implying there was no need to amend that august document because it could merely be reinterpreted by the courts at all levels. But all that means is that they know they could never make the changes they demand because the amendment process is onerous, just as the Framers designed it to be. They understood the dangers of making our founding document, our Constitution, easy to change. Such ease would make it meaningless.

As Joseph Story, a Supreme Court Justice, wrote in his Coometaries on the Constitution in 1833:

Without justice being freely, fully, and impartially administered, neither our persons, nor our rights, nor our property, can be protected. And if these, or either of them, are regulated by no certain laws, and are subject to no certain principles, and are held by no certain tenure, and are redressed, when violated, by no certain remedies, society fails of all its value; and men may as well return to a state of savage and barbarous independence.

Or as Rob Schwarzwalder to put it in more colloquial terms:

...if justice is not grounded in dependably permanent laws that themselves are grounded in the Constitution, all of our rights become matters of any given jurist's, president's, or legislator's whim.

But that's exactly what those who are trying to push the idea of a "living document" Constitution want. They want our Constitution to become meaningless, and in doing so, make it easier to rule through law, meaning they can say a law means whatever they want it to mean at any given moment and penalize citizens, businesses, and organizations as they see fit. At that point our nation becomes an oppressive dictatorship because the laws can be used to silence dissent, either by imprisonment or death. No action will be forbidden by the state because it can reinterpret laws willy-nilly to suit its needs whenever it wants. Our rights disappear and the Constitution becomes nothing but a piece of old paper that is no longer of any significance.

Ironically the same folks who believe the "living document" line being sold by the Left really don't understand that the rigid Constitution and the laws derived from it are the only things protecting them from the Leftist dystopia. All the "living document" doctrine will do is slowly destroy everything our nation is and has stood for until we're no different from the very totalitarian nations we fought against and shed blood to defeat.
Judi McLeod writes in today's Canada Free Press:

Who ever would have thought that the road to America's destruction would be made a grim possibility through a host of Catholic priests and bishops?
She documents how the Catholic infrastructure came to the aid of Saul Alinsky and Barack Obama. Hmm. Needless to say, the Catholic church has been thoroughly taken over by left-liberalism. She is vocal for causes dear to the Left. The current bishop in the Diocese of Manchester has done so in his prominent plea to abolish the death penalty in NH, which was last done before WWII. Hardly a pressing issue. His predecessor used the bogus advocacy figure of 47 million uninsured Americans to promote Obama Care.

As the late blogger Larry Auster puts it so succinctly:
 
[T]he Catholic hierarchy was eager to deliver the rest of us into socialist slavery [with Obama Care], so long as the Church's own pet area of liberty [contraception/abortion] was protected.
Ouch! The church was extremely naive if she thought it would work this way. For leftists a woman's right to kill her unborn baby is, well, sacred to them.

And we know Obama stabbed the church in the back, prompting the well-publicized pushback. The U.S. bishops have behaved contemptibly in aiding socialism. I especially single out Cardinal Dolan, whom my conservative Lutheran father adores. The rot is in the top leadership of both the country and church.

Why the Al Smith Dinner would not be cancelled for Barack Obama when it had been cancelled in '96 (Bill Clinton) and 2004 (John Kerry) is clearly indicative of this. It was an outrageous decision according to this pro-life advocate.

Are You a Walker?

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I am. And walking purposelessly without a stupid smart phone attached to one's ear is increasingly rare. Cities are laid out for vehicular traffic, not pedestrian. Too bad. The quality of life and health suffers.

I truly enjoyed this BBC discussion on the topic this morning, avidly listening to it. The artistic temperament, which is to say the melancholic, gravitates toward this, seen in such figures as Charles Dickens, William Wordsworth, Henry David Thoreau--just to name a few.

I wish I'd walk more. There are areas on the busy highway, Route 25, that connects everything in town just about, where there isn't adequate space.

I'd consider walking around the small lake I live near that's just north of Lake Winnipesaukee, if there wasn't _another_ T-storm in progress as I type. It's about 8:30 at night dark and we've already had six inches of rain this month.

Thoughts On A Sunday

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This edition of Thoughts On A Sunday may be abbreviated due to a line of thunderstorms making their way across New Hampshire this morning with more due later some time in the afternoon.

I am loath to leave things like computers and other expensive electronic gear turned on or plugged in when weather like that is coming through considering the damage we had here at The Manse a little over a year ago when lightning struck a utility pole at the top of our driveway. I have no desire to have to replace our electronic appliances again.

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It seems the Obama Administration can learn a lesson after all.

The U.S. Embassy in Tripoli was evacuated due to the heavy fighting taking place around the city between rival militia groups trying to seize control. Unlike the debacle of the Benghazi consulate, the State Department decided enough was enough and made the arrangements to get the embassy staff and their families out of Libya rather than allowing a repeat of Benghazi.

The evacuation entailed a heavily guarded convoy driving through the streets of Tripoli. Air cover was provided by two F-16 fighters and a Predator drone and Marine rapid response teams carried by V-22 Ospreys were on alert should the convoy get into trouble during the evacuation.

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The News Junkie links to a Slate article and comments upon the question: Who are the poor?

As he states: "Everyone wants to 'help' the poor. But who are they?"

When one looks closely at the question , the poor aren't who most people think they are. It is that disconnect that is causing those who wish to help the poor get it wrong when it comes to aid.

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David Starr gives us an abbreviated lesson and some tips about electricity, specifically the electricity in your home, how it should be wired up, and reminders that if you don't know what you're doing it's best to call a professional.

Having helped to restore a number of older homes over the decades, I could tell you horror stories about the gerry-rigged electrics I've found over the years, many which had me wondering why the place hadn't burned to the ground years ago. Others were still using turn-of-the-century wiring and 60-amp fuse boxes that had been 'converted' to 100-amp fuse boxes by replacing the 10 and 15-amp fuses with 15 and 20-amp fuses along with the main 60-amp fuses being replaced with 100-amp fuses.

The original Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Manse had just such an electrical system and it made me nervous every time I turned on a light or used the microwave oven or TV or computer.

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Bogie took some much needed break time and mowed her lawn, washed her motorcycle, and got a nice picture of her cat Tory in the process.

Her description of Tory's habits, that being going out only now and then and sticking close to the house when doing so, reminded me a lot of our dear departed Bagheera the Magnificent. He rarely ventured far and preferred to hang out under one of the hostas in front of The Manse.

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This isn't news to me: The typical American household is worth a third less than it was 7 years ago.

That's certainly been true for us. Just the value of our home is about 35% less than it was then and 20% less than when we bought it in 2005. Our incomes haven't kept up with inflation, and by inflation I mean the real rate which includes food and fuel prices, not that piece-of-crap inflation rate the government has been peddling over the past 7 years.

About the only durable good purchases we've made over the past 7 years has been a new clothesdryer, bought just this past spring to replace the deceased one, and a new water heater bought three years ago to replace the one that was failing. We've purchased used vehicles rather than new because, quite frankly, we had better things to do with our money than making new car payments, like buying propane and cord wood to heat our home. (Those vehicles were bought to replace older vehicles that either wouldn't pass the state safety inspection without major repairs or required maintenance that would cost far more than the vehicle was worth to fix. One was starting to nickle-and-dime us to death, with monthly repairs costing twice what a car payment would even after figuring in the increased insurance cost.)

A lot of leisure activities we used to take part in are a thing of the past. The Official Weekend Pundit Lake Winnipesaukee Runabout, aka The Boat, hasn't been out on the lake for over four years because we couldn't justify the cost. We haven't taken a vacation in over 4 years because we just haven't had the extra cash we used to have back then.

So that the average American household is worth less than it was when The Won took office is not a surprise to me and my family.

(H/T Instapundit)

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Is it any surprise that young, uniformed Democrats support the Palestinian side in the present conflict with Israel?

Of course not. After all they have no historical context and easily buy into the MSM and Leftist online media hype.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the skies to the west are darkening, the wind is picking up, and where it's a good time to get off the lake and away from the beaches.
I wish I had competed in this delightful-looking Michigan "Warrior Dash" contest, sort of a scaled-down, more humane Tough Mudder (originally designed by British special forces), which has a bunch of interesting photos of the thousands of people running over and through obstacles, getting muddy, and simply having a great time, capping it off by eating turkey and drinking ale. That's so me, though I'm getting a little old at 47. Definitely my people--both in race, personality, and insanity--the people that made Michigan THE best state in the Union during the 1960s and 1970s and early 1980s. There's been an exodus of these people following jobs elsewhere. I'd just want to bring Sawyer, my one-year-old black lab, as I competed. A lot of hot babes, too. Surprising the number of brave ladies I must say.

Curiously, not a black person in the hundreds of photos, though Flint, which has a large black population, is just due south where the competition was held in Mt. Morris. Am I allowed to notice? Probably not.

It was things like this I have noticed over the decades but was told by the early version of the PC (politically correct) movement not to acknowledge that first prompted me to question conventional wisdom. PC is a Stalinized stink that I can smell a half mile away. It's a variant of bullshit.
In light of my previous post about the awakening of a Leftist mind to the hypocrisy of the Left's ideology, I thought it would be a good idea to link to Assistant Village Idiot's e-mail debate with his uncle on the differences between conservatives and liberals.

Liberalism is a religion.  Conservatism is a culture.  You might choose different terms for the distinction I am making, but there is a qualitative difference in how they go wrong.  Conservatives are notorious for mixing God, Country, Military, and Tradition, being unable to even perceive that these might be at odds in America at times.  Liberals are notorious for thinking that their values are simply Right, and that Jesus, Moses, Buddha, and Whoever taught those things, or would have if they had the benefit of modern wisdom.  (Alternatively, some liberals believe that those worthies were All Wrong, but we've got it right now, and those who disagree are some sort of phobe or bigot.)

I have seen both sides of this myself, though I must agree with one commenter who responded with:

While this [ - mixing God, Country, Military, and Tradition - ] may be true of some self-described conservatives and may be the general perception of non-conservatives it is at variance with the beliefs and inclinations of philosophical conservatives.

AVI does a pretty good job of delving into both the misconceptions liberals have of conservatives, but of the depth of the willful ignorance many on the Left embrace and the hard road those who end up leaving liberalism behind face.

This is why leaving liberalism is always a personal journey that requires painful self-observation.  It is not a set of intellectual principles, but a religious faith.  It is impossible to leave liberalism without personal struggle.

We certainly saw that in Danusha Goska's self-described journey from lock-step Leftism to free-thinking adult. Others that have made the same journey have also described how many of their deeply ingrained beliefs they had to leave behind in order to start seeing the world the way it is rather than the way the Left portrays it, to unlearn knee-jerk emotional reactions and to start really looking at what was happening and making up their own minds about what they observed.

idfinfographic.jpg


For most of my life, the United States was the best country on God's green earth. Now, I'm not so sure. There's maybe more hope for Israel than the U.S., as Diana West argues here. I would like to visit Israel, even now. The birthrate is 3.0 children per woman, far better than NH's measly 1.2. It's a beautiful country. I support Israel. Do you?
It is amazing to me, even after all this time, to see what happens when someone comes to realize that everything they've been taught to think, say, or feel since they were young adults has been a lie. Some are aghast at the realization that those they thought of as friends, mentors, or fellow believers are in truth close-minded bigots filled with hatred and capable of spewing invective towards those they see as the "other". They find that many of the actions they thought were "helping the downtrodden" were in fact keeping many of those same people trapped in a life poverty, ignorance, want, hopelessness, and oppression. And so it is with Danusha V. Goska.

How far left was I? So far left my beloved uncle was a card-carrying member of the Communist Party in a Communist country. When I returned to his Slovak village to buy him a mass card, the priest refused to sell me one. So far left that a self-identified terrorist proposed marriage to me. So far left I was a two-time Peace Corps volunteer and I have a degree from UC Berkeley. So far left that my Teamster mother used to tell anyone who would listen that she voted for Gus Hall, Communist Party chairman, for president. I wore a button saying "Eat the Rich." To me it wasn't a metaphor.

I voted Republican in the last presidential election.

What led to her change of viewpoint, one she'd held almost her entire life? One could say that reality finally intruded in her life and she was no longer able to deal with the cognitive dissonance that so many on the Left blissfully ignore every day.

Goska didn't make the change from idealistic leftist drone to free-thinking adult in one fell swoop. It took a series of events over a number of years that motivated her to question the path she'd been on, to cause her to analyze the basic assumptions about people that had been drummed into her since she'd been a child. Over time she found that almost every assumption she made were not just wrong, but egregious in the depths of their wrongness. She goes on to list ten reasons why she is no longer a Leftist and provides a lot of context behind each reason. It's well worth delving into as I found myself nodding in agreement with every point she brought up, every anecdote that led to her change of heart.

In descending order they are:

10. Huffiness
9. Selective Outrage
8. It's The Thought That Counts
7. Leftists Hate My People
6. I Believe In God
5. Straw Men
4. "In order to make an omelet you need break a few eggs"
3. It Doesn't Work
2. Other Approaches Work Better
1. Hate

It's not a real surprise to me that Hate is the number one reason Goska is no longer a Leftist. When you think about it, hate can be found to be a motivation behind the other nine reasons. They merely refine the hatred into specific categories and targets.

If hate were the only reason, I'd stop being a leftist for this reason alone.

I experienced powerful cognitive dissonance when I recognized the hate. The rightest of my right-wing acquaintances -- I had no right-wing friends -- expressed nothing like this. My right-wing acquaintances talked about loving: God, their family, their community. I'm not saying that the right-wingers I knew were better people; I don't know that they were. I'm speaking here, merely, about language.

But language defines thought, does it not? Otherwise why does the Left try so hard to impose politically correct speech? Their argument is that it's to prevent offending anyone. However it has nothing to do with preventing offensive language and everything to do with controlling thought. Control language long enough and it will become impossible to express dissatisfaction with, or worse, expose the corrupt motivations and totalitarian actions of those in power. Words have meaning. Words have power. Eliminate some words or phrases and dissent becomes nearly impossible. That is the aim of the Left - eliminate any dissent to the creation of their Socialist Utopia. (As one of my dearest friends once told me, "Politically correct speech is fascism!")

But as we have known for some time and what Goska has discovered on her own is that such utopias can only exist within the Leftist mind. The reality of such utopias is harsh, totalitarian, and bleak. There certainly are enough examples of this throughout history, and some few still cling to a miserable existence to act as modern day examples of why we don't want any part of such dystopic "utopias". If history nor some of the present day socialist havens aren't example enough, we have some right here in the US that give us a taste of just how effed up the Leftists are.

I went to hear David Horowitz speak in 2004. My intention was to heckle him. Horowitz said something that interrupted my flow of thought. He pointed out that Camden, Paterson, and Newark had decades of Democratic leadership.

Ouch.

I grew up among "Greatest Generation" Americans who had helped build these cities. One older woman told me, "As soon as I got my weekly paycheck, I rushed to Main Ave in Paterson, and my entire paycheck ended up on my back, in a new outfit." In the 1950s and 60s, my parents and my friends' parents fled deadly violence in Newark and Paterson.

Within a few short decades, Paterson, Camden, and Newark devolved into unlivable slums, with shooting deaths, drug deals, and garbage-strewn streets. The pain that New Jerseyans express about these failed cities is our state's open wound.

Once great cities have decayed into No Man's Lands, all under the governance of the Left, something Goska experienced first hand. To see that those of the same political bent, the so-called "Defenders of the Downtrodden", are the ones responsible for the downfall of those cities, as well as Detroit, a prime example of the effects of decades of Leftist leadership. Is it any wonder Goska now sees the folly of her earlier beliefs?

We can only hope others with the same close-minded belief system can find the wherewithal to closely examine themselves and the truth of their ideology to see it for what it is. To paraphrase Winston Churchill, it is a philosophy of failure, a creed of ignorance, and a gospel of envy whose only virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
If anyone is looking for an example of how not to regulate an economy, the the perfect example exists in South America.

Once a country with a bustling economy and rising per capita incomes, Venezuela has become an economic basket case as government control crippled wider swaths of the economy to the point where nothing works, prices are skyrocketing, goods are scarce and becoming more so, and where what few factories have managed to survive to this point are grinding to a halt because they have no way to pay for parts and other supplies needed to continue production.

The Socialist Utopia ushered in by the late dictator Hugo Chavez has finally reached its goal with the total destruction of the "capitalist hell" the Venezuelan people were forced to live in under previous governments. Now that everyone (except the elites) are equal, they know share equal amounts of misery, privation, poverty, lack of necessities, and lack of rights.

One has to wonder whether Chavez and his successor read Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged and mistook it for a manual rather than a warning. From what I've seen of the results of Chavismo in that once wealthy country, I'd have to say that's exactly what they've done. Considering Venezuela's oil reserves are huge, one would think there would be more than enough money coming in to support government spending. But oil production has plummeted as the country's oil infrastructure has started failing because those who knew how to keep it running were kicked out, cronies moved in, and hard cash needed to buy parts to keep it running has become scarce.

And to think our President admired Hugo Chavez.
This is an interesting and instructive coincidence of the likely collision course between prominent anti-common core advocate Jon DiPietro, a Manchester resident with four children, and Dave Ryan, newly hired Manchester assistant superintendent for something dubiously called curriculum and instruction, the obvious point guy for this wretched pile of steaming doo-doo called common core. Both are--like me--graduates of the BG class of 1986, the-then all-boys' college preparatory school run by the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic order, in Nashua, NH.

Dave, more of a personable bureaucratic operative, won't be heard from unless he absolutely has to be, judging from his underwhelming performance. Jon is more forthright, rigorous, and traditional.  The Plymouth State English major versus the University of Massachusetts at Lowell electrical engineer. Hmm. Who wins that? No contest.

Thoughts On A Sunday

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The weather has been a little schizo over the weekend, with sun, high clouds, borderline humidity (almost dry but not quite), and no wind. Not that it's affected any summer weekend activities with the exception of hanging out laundry to dry. Under those conditions it takes hours to dry. It certainly put a crimp in my usual laundry routine.

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It was 45 years ago today that man first landed on the Moon.

I remember watching it on my grandmother's big 25-inch console TV at her home on the Connecticut shoreline. Our whole family was supposed to have been well on our way home from there after having spent three weeks there. But because Armstrong and Aldrin were going to step out onto the Moon, we ended up staying to watch the whole thing.

I had always been a big fan of space exploration. I even had a model of the Saturn V rocket in my bedroom. The whole thing stood over three feet tall and the various stages could come apart just like the real thing. The Apollo could even dock with the LEM. I spent countless hours playing with that thing. But on this day back in 1969 I didn't have to imagine anything. I could see it all on TV and listen to the commentary of Walter Cronkite as everything unfolded.

The memory is as clear to me as the day it happened all those years ago.

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Russia's propaganda war over the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 continues. Russia still insists it was Ukraine that shot down the airliner even though that makes no sense.

Considering the flight was coming from the Netherlands and was on a East South Easterly course, there's no reason Ukrainian air defense would have engaged the airliner, particularly after it had already overflown most of the country. But if the Russian separatists saw an aircraft on that course coming from central Ukraine that might conclude it was a Ukrainian Air Force aircraft and shot it down.

More than one TV news report showed a Russian mobile SAM transporter leaving the area from where the missile that shot down the airliner had been launched. What made it unusual was that two of its missile were no longer on its launch rails. That implies the missiles had been expended, possibly with one or both of them having destroyed the airliner.

Frankly, it would have been better for Russia if Vladimir Putin admitted up front that the 'separatists' had shot it down in error and expressed dismay that such a horrible event took place. But by using the same old Cold War tactics of deny and accuse, it makes Russia appear to be complicit in the downing of MH17 and that they're covering it up.

One would think that Putin would learn from our history that the act itself may be bad, but the cover-up is even worse.

Of course this just backs up the impression that Russia has become dangerous again, just as Mitt Romney predicted.

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The Greens are at it again, this time setting their sights on New England and its electricity supply.

The delusion that all of the electricity that we need can be generated by 'green' means is just that, an illusion. A number of power plants have been shut down because they no longer meet the even stricter EPA regulations. The problem is that not much in the way of new capacity has been built to replace them even as demand for electricity grows. Natural gas-fired plants are in abundance now, but the problem is that there isn't a single pipeline that brings that gas into New England and plans to actually build one have been opposed by the Greens at every step. That makes the supply iffy at best. Wind and solar are a bust because they aren't always available when needed and they cost a hell of a lot more than traditional means of generating electricity. Wind also has a downside in that the turbines kill a lot of wildlife, specifically birds, including a number of endangered species, and the infrasound generated by the blades as they turn has deleterious health effects on animals and people.

An abundant supply of clean, renewable hydropower is available just over the border in Canada, but the Greens don't want anyone building the transmission lines needed to get it into New England.

Of course there is nuclear power, one of the greenest supplies of energy around, but the Greens have a hatred for nuclear that borders on the pathological.

No matter what, the Greens, and most particularly those "upper-educated elites snugly ensconced in the digital economy or sitting in Washington writing regulations telling everybody else what to do," are against anything that might actually bring reliable power to New England. They don't have to deal with the consequences of their actions. We do, which is why these idiots should be the last people making decisions that affect us negatively while they are safely insulated from damage they are causing.

(H/T Maggie's Farm)

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Remember how the claim that ObamaCare would drive up costs was called "a lie" by supporters? It turns out it was the truth, at least in Louisiana where health care premiums are expected to are expected to increase by between 15.5 and 24 percent.

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Gateway Pundit gives us a comparison between Elizabeth Warren's 11 Commandments of Progressivism and Adolph Hitler's 25 Points of the Nazi Party and points out the eerie similarity between the two.

Cap'n Teach has his own take on the matter.

(H/T Pirate's Cove)

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Eric the Viking offers a twofer in regards to the national debt and the nation's unsustainable deficit spending. He explains it with a simple three word phrase: "We're Going Broke."

You know the problem is getting bad when even the Washington Post is slamming Congress, the White House, and the rest of the Washington naysayers for not addressing the problem now before it becomes bad enough that it can no longer be ignored, or worse, it becomes to late to do anything about it and country goes bankrupt.

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Why do liberals think "profit" is a dirty word? They certainly seem to use it in their efforts to disparage or discredit people, corporations, and even court decisions. If a business isn't profitable how is it supposed to survive? Or do they think all businesses should lose money and become dependent upon government to survive? (That's my take on it.)

They are hinting that profit is different from other motivations. Less noble. Maybe even wicked.

As Glenn Reynolds so aptly put it, "A company that turns a profit is self-sufficient." Aye, and there's the rub. They don't need government to survive and can choose their own course.

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And that's the news from Lake Winnipesaukee, where the weather is going to get hotter and more humid, the sound of corporate jets leaving the local airport is building, and where yet again Monday has returned too soon.

Summer In The 603

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As Bogie writes: Money quote in my book: The Devil Went Down to Georgia because Daniel Webster kicked his ass!

Indeed.
As if we need even more evidence that socialism is a system of failure, ignorance, and envy, there's this experiment run by the University of Munich and Duke University to determine people's willingness to lie for personal gain.

Some 250 Berliners were randomly selected to take part in a game where they could win up to €6 ($8).

The game was simple enough. Each participant was asked to throw a die 40 times and record each roll on a piece of paper. A higher overall tally earned a bigger payoff. Before each roll, players had to commit themselves to write down the number that was on either the top or the bottom side of the die. However, they did not have to tell anyone which side they had chosen, which made it easy to cheat by rolling the die first and then pretending that they had selected the side with the highest number. If they picked the top and then rolled a two, for example, they would have an incentive to claim--falsely--that they had chosen the bottom, which would be a five.

Honest participants would be expected to roll ones, twos and threes as often as fours, fives and sixes. But that did not happen: the sheets handed in had a suspiciously large share of high numbers, suggesting many players had cheated.

The authors found that, on average, those who had East German roots cheated twice as much as those who had grown up in West Germany under capitalism.

All the same, when it comes to ethics, a capitalist upbringing appears to trump a socialist one.

None of that surprises me. I've known more than my share of dyed-in-the-wool European socialists, and very few of them displayed what I would consider ethical behavior, particularly in regards to those who might not be of the same political bent as they.

That also brings up the question: Would they lie for political gain? From my experience, the answer is 'Yes'.

(H/T Instapundit)

Tax-Eaters Cometh

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According to Wayne Allyn Root, a classmate of Barry Soetoro's at Columbia--the mysterious student he nor any one else remembers seeing--we have significantly more tax eaters than tax payers.

There are now 70 percent more Americans collecting entitlement checks than working in the private sector (148 million "takers" vs. 86 million "makers").
As Ben Stein's dad is famous for saying, what can't last, won't. We're doomed.

California Catch-22

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This could only happen in California.

Considering the once Golden State is in the midst of a severe drought, the drive to conserve water has been taken up by local municipalities and residents. But what happens when the actions homeowners are taking to conserve water under the direction of state government mandates conflict with local ordinances that require residential landscaping be kept looking healthy and green? They get stuck in a Catch-22 situation: no matter what they do they'll be fined $500 either by the state or their home town. The state will fine them for watering their lawns during the water restrictions and the town will fine them for not watering their lawns.

How is it that the folks running these towns and cities can think it's a good idea to use what little water is available to water lawns rather using it for drinking, cooking, bathing, or doing laundry? These nuts need to get a clue and focus on what's really important, and it ain't lawns.

Quote Of The Week

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There's nothing I can add to this:

immi.jpg
Indeed.
The only fact I feel is necessary to add to this wonderful contrast is that Vermont is the only state, with the possible exception of Alaska, where conceal carry is not licensed. So anyone, regardless whether he or she is from Vermont, can have a concealed handgun on his person.

In Chicago, a city of 2.7 million people, fewer than 8,000 people are licensed to own a gun - less than 0.3%. The city's gun-homicide rate is about 18 per 100,000. In Vermont, by contrast, where 42% of the population are gun owners, the rate of gun murders in 2010 was 0.3 per 100,000. So Chicago has a gun-homicide rate about 60 times Vermont's, despite Vermonters being 150 times as likely to own a gun. To put that another way, in Chicago the ratio of the gun-homicide rate to the percentage of citizens who legally own guns is nine thousand times higher than it is in Vermont.
So I once packed a full-service sidearm in Vermont that a mere empty casing in Massachusetts would likely cause me to be in legal trouble. States like California, Maryland, Massachusetts, and New Jersey are dreadful when it comes to the Second Amendment. See what I mean?
I first learned how a bill sponsored by then state senator Jeanne Shaheen, aka, "Pizza Mom," was a nuclear bomb in the NH health care insurers' market on a Free State forum only five or six years ago. She's gotten a free pass on being Godzilla to the NH health insurer market. Exaggeration? Read on.

Do the television journalists bother to do their homework in asking her when she will be presumably running for re-election what the deal was? They should when 21 health insurers left the state apparently in response to the disastrous SB 711,the legislation that drove off up to two dozen health insurers in the state, leaving NH with two and a half providers, according to Skip Murphy at Granite Grok.

Google it with her name, and there's actually a small list of sites attempting to hold her accountable: Granite Grok, the Union Leader (3 Dec 2011 editorial below the fold), Americans for Prosperity, a few others like Gleach, who writes:

The FACT is that when you force companies to lose money, they will stop doing business with you. That lack of competition (driven out with good intentions of a utopia where everyone has access to million dollar care even if they can't afford it) results in higher prices - that is economic FACT. Insurance is risk-mitigation and the companies who provide it are calculating gamblers; when they see a losing horse, they won't bet on it; SB711 branded NH a losing horse.

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