Saturday, February 28, 2009

Obama Demands Satisfaction

The president has challenged lobbyists to a duel. I wonder if that includes any of the horde that infest his administration.

Kansas Governor Sibelius Tapped to Be Secretary of Health and Human Services

I don't know much about her, but her son was in the news a while back. His parents "are very proud of their son John's creativity and talent." Oh, I'll bet.

Anybody Up For A Million-Taxpayer March on Washington?

I know, I know. The productive people in our society don’t always have time to commit to something like this. They’re busy working, creating, meeting payrolls, planning for the future. But as Charles Krauthammer points out, Obama is now clearly leading the U.S. toward European-style socialism, and I believe that even the chronically “unengaged” (the 20 or 30 percent of voters who don’t know jack about politics, but nonetheless fell for the American-Idol-type hucksterism of Obama’s campaign) didn’t have this in mind. It is better to oppose the “Obamaist Manifesto” and the Democratic pillage of our wealth now rather than later, when the damage may have become irreparable. And don’t get me wrong: the Tea Party protests currently going on around the country are a great idea; but a million people descending on Washington would have greater impact.

Taxpayers of America, unite! You have nothing to lose but your "Change"!

And remember: we can march peacefully on Washington today, OR...


...we may have to sack it tomorrow. Which would you prefer? (Sigh. Yeah, me too. But "peaceful" is probably better).

Friday, February 27, 2009

Case Closed



Sure. There's plenty of anecdotal evidence. But now we have mathematical proof.

Maybe It’s Just Me



But Tim Geithner puts me in mind of an elf who just sold out Middle Earth to Sauron.

Is It Food Or Is It Legislation?

I don’t know for sure, but if it really is food, it sure isn’t going into the pantry of my Obamalypse bunker.

Competitors, Not Enemies

Obama and Pelosi may, indeed, be butting heads, but as far as I’m concerned it’s just Sweyn Forkbeard and Harald Bluetooth arguing over the spoils. They’re both eager to toss taxpayers back and forth on the tips of their spears.

By the way, anybody seen the stock market lately? Oh, there it is…

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Happy Feet Friday

A sprightly piece from the mid-1930’s, featuring Jimmy Dorsey on clarinet and a very rare glimpse of the great Bunny Berigan on trumpet.

It’s Big Brother

Rahm Emanuel’s big brother, that is. Ezekiel Emanuel, an oncologist who has long been involved with healthcare issues, is now “a top adviser to White House budget chief Peter Orszag.” Does anybody know where he stands on anything? Might be a good idea to find out since Obama’s carving out hundreds of billions of dollars for healthcare “reform.”

Let’s see now…Here’s an article from the Washington Post that summarizes some of Dr. Emanuel’s suggestions: “an independent National Health Board and regional boards modeled on the Federal Reserve System” (You know, so that our healthcare system can be run with the same eagle-eye vigilance and Prussian efficiency that characterizes our banking system)…a government-subsidized, universal “essential benefits package” (Like the insurance you’ve got now? Too bad!), that would be “financed by a dedicated tax that everyone pays”… “an independent Institute for Technology and Outcomes Assessment” (To determine whether your particular ailment should be allotted resources)…If it all sounds strangely like Hillary Care, that could be because Dr. Emanuel was a member of Hillary’s healthcare task force.

Contrary to the leftist mantra that “our healthcare system is broken,” health care in the U.S. is apparently good enough to attract patients from Canada, a country which has the kind of system over which Democrats routinely swoon in adoration. And the articles linked above do not mention some of the more sinister features of Hillary’s plan – most notoriously, the criminalization of healthcare provided outside the parameters of a government-run system. The key is to try to fix what doesn’t work rather than to implement a comprehensive, across-the-board overhaul that will likely reduce the average quality of healthcare.

Does Dr. Emanuel believe that a physician and a patient who privately contract for treatment outside of a government-subsidized program should be jailed? Does he believe that an ostensibly “independent” board should influence the allocation of resources for new research? (And does he truly think that the chances of politically-motivated funding would be zero?) Maybe someone should ask him – on the record.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Oh, We Don't, Don't We?

President Obama says, "You don't mess with Joe."

Hey, Barrie! I mess with Joe at will.

From the Shelves of the Paco Library



It’s Frontier Day here at the Paco Library, and today’s pick is Lone Star Justice: The First Century of the Texas Rangers, by one of our most imminent historians of the old west, Robert Utley (Mr. Utley has also completed the second volume in his history of the Rangers, Lone Star Lawmen, which I have not yet acquired).

The author takes us back to the origins of the Texas Ranger tradition, in the years following the struggle for independence from Mexico. The term “rangers” is used broadly to refer to the various groups of men whose principal duties originally involved fighting Mexicans and Indians. Sometimes they were paid soldiers of the state, sometimes volunteers who responded to sudden emergencies, but up until the 1870’s they generally served the military function of patrolling the border with Mexico and the thinly-settled regions of central and western Texas (it was not until the last quarter or so of the 19th century that they became chiefly involved in law enforcement).

All the legendary names of the Rangers are here: John Coffee Hays, Samuel Walker, Rip Ford, Ben McCulloch, John Hughes and others of perhaps lesser renown, but of great importance in the development of the tradition. Mr. Utley provides a comprehensive, factual history of the Texas Rangers that is objective and even-handed; he does not whitewash the failures, excesses and crimes of various individual Rangers, but succeeds, in my view, in placing everything in the proper context of a violent place and time.

And the Texas of which Mr. Utley writes was, indeed, the wild west at its wildest: simmering hatreds between Mexicans and Anglos, savage raids by Comanches and Kiowas, rampant cattle theft, violent feuds, the field of operations for notorious outlaws such as Sam Bass and John Wesley Hardin, and, in the wake of the Civil War, clashes between Radical Republicans and die-hard Confederates. Frequently underfunded and undermanned, occasionally caught up in the machinations of powerful state politicians, and frustrated by the lack of cooperation afforded by county sheriffs and other local law enforcement personnel, the Rangers in their first hundred years nevertheless established an enviable record, accomplishing a great deal with limited resources. Mr. Utley provides a fine, well-researched history, and has included many photographs, illustrations and maps that assist us in our understanding of the men and places described in the narrative.

Other books by Mr. Utley that you may find interesting are Frontier Regulars: The United States Army and the Indian, 1866-1890, High Noon in Lincoln: Violence on the Western Frontier (an account of the Lincoln County War in New Mexico), and The Lance and the Shield: The Life and Times of Sitting Bull.

Green is the New Black (or Perhaps the New Red)

Steven Hayward at The Claremont Institute has a fine article which discusses the nexus between environmental fanaticism and politics. The essay combines thoughtful analysis with deadly fisking. Here is David Shearman, co-author of The Climate Change Challenge and the Failure of Democracy:

"To retain an inhabitable earth we may have to compromise the eternal vicissitudes of democracy for an informed leadership that directs. There are countries that fall within this requirement and we should use them to initiate more active mitigation.... The People's Republic of China may hold the key to innovative measures that can both arrest the expected surge in emissions from developing countries and provide developed nations with the means to alternative energy. China curbs individual freedom in favour of communal need. The State will implement those measures seen to be in the common good." To which Hayward responds, "Perhaps the film version will be called An Inconvenient Democracy."

A cleaner, greener earth brought to you by the good people of the global police state.

Nothing is preordained, nothing is inevitable - it only seems that way once the cell door closes on you. Wake. Up.

Stimulus “Growth” Sectors

According to this Yahoo news story, the six fields that will benefit most from the stimulust™ bill are construction, the “green sector”, medical information technology, education, energy and utilities and – but of course! – the federal government. “A $787 billion package doesn't just administer itself. There will be openings for more lawyers, regulators, accountants, and administrators to ensure all of the dollars go where they're intended.” You know, to more lawyers, regulators, accountants, and administrators.

Our Chicken Coop is in Good Hands



Obama has chosen Chas Freeman to head up the National Intelligence Council. Would that be the same Chas Freeman who thinks that democracy is some kind of confidence game, that Israel is what’s wrong with the Middle East, and that Hezbollah is legit? Why, yes, yes it would.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Assortment

1) Friend and commenter KC has ventured into the world of blogdom with Pixie Place!

2) John Kerry hates himself.

3) One of the best takes on Eric Holder’s accusation of cowardice (H/T: The Other McCain).

4) Here’s a quick visual recap of Obama’s speech tonight:













Freedom Is Slavery

And war is peace and up is down. A newspaper headline in the Washington Times today perfectly captures the Orwellian spirit of the age: “Obama Pleads for Fiscal Responsibility.” How does one (or rather, The One) plan to square this call for belt-tightening with the pork-stuffed stimulus bill? Or, for that matter, with the earmark-laden omnibus spending bill?

Somewhere, the robber barons of old are spinning in their graves, bitterly reproaching themselves for not thinking up democracy and legislative government on their own. How paltry their thieving escapades seem in retrospect, compared to the wholesale looting being carried out by our elected representatives.

Update: O-Bingo! (via Ace of Spades)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Cabinet Meeting

Obama: Good morning everybody. Let’s get started. First off, I’d like to thank Joe Biden for taking on the task of implementing the stimulus bill. It’s a big job, Joe, figuring out how best to spend almost $800 billion, but I know you can do it.

Biden: Thank you, Mr. President.

Obama: By the way, those are some stylin’ gold chains you’re wearing. And unless I miss my guess, that's a new watch. Rolex, isn’t it?

Biden: That’s right, sir. Stimulus begins at home, I always say.

Obama: Quite right, too! Hillary, I also wanted to compliment you on the fine job you did in China. You sent exactly the message that this administration wants to get across: that human rights comes in a very close third on our list of concerns, right after begging China to continue financing our debt, and halting global warming. I thought that video of you walking around the slave labor camp with a CO2 detector was a nice touch.

Clinton: Thanks, Senator.

Obama: President.

Clinton: Yes, of course. Mr. P-p-p…

Obama: That’s ok, Hillary; work up to it slowly. Rahm, anything new in our congressional strategy?

Emanuel: Just the same &%$* buncha *&@# as last week, except that %$&* Roland Burris has stepped all over his @!$% and we may need to find some other *&!% to take his place.

Obama: Put with your customary eloquence. Thanks. Say, where’s Janet Napolitano? I had some Homeland Security questions for her.

Panetta: Sorry, Mr. President, but we haven’t heard from her since her last trip back to Phoenix. We got this note, though, asking for $100,000 for her safe return. It’s supposed to be delivered to the house of a man named Hector “El Machete” Villalobos in Ciudad Juarez.

Obama: Well, you’re the CIA guy; what’s it mean?

Panetta: Gosh, sir, I really don’t know. Maybe it’s some kind of request for a travel voucher?

Obama: Yeah, that’s probably it. Joe, think you could spare a little of that stimulus cash for Janet?

Biden: Well, I don’t know…I mean what with our infrastructure needs, the ailing automobile industry, my son’s down payment on the new house… I’ll have to check.

Obama: Good man, Joe. Way to watch those pennies. No need to overdo it, though. Anything else?

Hillary: Oh, there is one thing, Mr. P-p-p…sir. Jack Murtha is waiting for you in the Oval Office. He says he’s interested in giving up his congressional seat in order to pursue his lifelong ambition of being an ambassador.

Obama: To which country?

Hillary: To any country without an extradition treaty.

Obama: All right, I’ll see him. Well, that’s enough hope and change for today, folks. Say, Rahm, stop by and see the Secret Service boys, will you? Michelle and I are feeling a little stressed and we’d like to drive over to the kids’ school later.

Emanuel: #&*^!

Obama: Thanks. By the way, good luck at your Tourettes Syndrome Anonymous meeting tonight!

Will the Last Honest Democrat in Illinois Please Raise Your Hand?

Poor Roland Burris, Illinois’ newly-minted Democratic senator, may well find himself returned to private life due to certain, er, “mistakes” and “glitches” having to do with his testimony about the extent of his relationship with former-governor Rod Blagojevich. Patterico indicates that a possible replacement being floated has a few problems of his own. State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias has ties to Tony Rezko and perhaps to Chicago mob figures, as well.

I’m thinking that even the most optimistic political wildcatter looking for a clean Democrat in Illinois would have abandoned this hole long ago.

Update: Haw! Richard McEnroe makes a great point: "Let's lower the bar a bit. Will the FIRST honest Democrat in Illinois please raise your hand?"

Son of Porkulus

The Democrats are trying to slip another slab of big-spending legislation through the House, once again without giving anyone time to read it. If and when this thing goes to the Senate, I hope “Republican” senators Collins, Snow and Specter will summon up the gumption to vote against it.

My stepfather recently floated the idea of cutting the salaries of all federal government employees and eliminating paid annual leave until spending is brought under control. This would have minimal impact on the budget deficit, but would be important as a symbolic act (and I don’t think he even saw this article). In any event, it is probably better than my idea, which was to release a swarm of killer bees in the Capitol building (Hey, that’s what you call “satire”, Internet Police!)

Update: The Obama Administration: like some kind of slapstick natural disaster.

Update II: Another role for Biden? I dunno...



Photo gratefully swiped from Smash Mouth Politics

Sunday, February 22, 2009

G'Day, Brunhilde

This article's a little old, but it was linked by Gateway Pundit in a post on witchcraft in America.

A Woid to Da Wise



Hey, Rick Santelli, whatzamattafoyou, huh? Ya go on national TV and shoot off your mouth like some kinda prize goombah, knockin' the Chief's stimulus bill. What, you think the First Amendment's like a license to say whatever's on your mind or somethin'? Robert Gibbs tried to tell you like it is, and then ya mop up the floor with him, too.

Ok, wiseguy, we tried playin' nice; now you listen to me. We know where ya live, we know where ya work. We got our eyes on ya, see? I got two words for ya to think about: "Fairness Doctrine." Roll that up in your First Amendment and smoke it, pal.

South (and North) of the Border

The situation in Mexico continues to deteriorate as the army descends on Cancún, hauling the police chief and 36 police officers in for questioning in connection with the death of a former general who had recently taken over command of a special crime squad. The dramatic increase in drug-related violence is spreading into the U.S., too, and not just along the border (Sarah Palin, call your office).

Before President Obama gets too carried away with fantasies of halving the deficit by reducing our military expenditures in Iraq and Afghanistan, he'd better keep in mind the possibility that, even if he is able to cut back elsewhere, we're liable to need a rather substantial build-up of security along our border with Mexico. An uncontrollable influx of foreign workers who settle illegally in the U.S. is bad enough; roving bands of Mexican kidnappers and assassins is truly intolerable (or would be in the America I grew up in; of course, with all this "hope and change", maybe I'm just being culturally insensitive).

Sunday Funny

From Blue Crab Boulevard comes news of a contest I'd never heard of before: the Diagram Prize for Oddest Book Title of the Year. The article provides the name of the six finalists; Baboon Metaphysics looks like the favorite.

Totally unrelated: The only way I could ever be induced to embrace Obama.

Update: Here are some photos of the Brazilian Obamaphile (SFW).

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Go Figure

After substantially boosting the deficit, Obama plans to sharply reduce it over the next four years. I believe we're now getting into the realm of imaginary numbers and perhaps even non-Euclidian geometry.

Or maybe it isn't math at all; maybe it's magic!


"Abracadabra! Peace, wealth, universal health care!"


"But first...

I need to saw a few million taxpayers in half".

Books – Between the Covers

I’ve highlighted some book covers recently that I thought were interesting, but the innards of books are of even greater importance. I’m not talking narrative content, which is an aspect better reserved for the weekly reviews, but illustrations. Photographs, color plates, reproductions of paintings, all of these can enhance our enjoyment and understanding of a book. Here are a few items that appeal to me (click images to enlarge).

I had no earthly use for this book, but I’ve always been a sucker for maps and this one is practically nothing but. This is the 1908 Everyman’s edition of Atlas of the Ancient and Classical World, consisting of numerous fold-outs of maps ranging from biblical times to the Dark Ages.


We all like dinosaurs, right? Or at least we do when we’re kids. When I was nearing my eighth birthday I saw the Spring Books publication, Prehistoric Animals in a book store and pleaded with my mother to make that my birthday present. It was expensive (twenty dollars!), and my mom tried to deflect me to something cheaper, but she finally knuckled under and got me this one. I literally wore the cover off the book from continual reading over the next few years, and once I became a gainfully-employed adult I had the book rebound in leather (at several times the original price); I still peruse it from time to time. The book includes sixty plates, many in full color. Some were prepared specifically for this book, others are gorgeous reproductions of the classic illustrations of Zdeňek Burian (the text – which assumes a level of paleontological knowledge on the part of the reader which was certainly beyond my tender years – is by Dr. Joseph Augusta). The picture below portrays a Tyrannosaurus confronting two unfortunate duck-billed dinosaurs (I confess that I always hoped that the poor fellows dove into the creek and got away).


A Gap in Nature: Discovering the World’s Extinct Animals was authored by…well, by Tim Flannery, an Australian paleontologist who is also one of the more prominent chicken-littles of the global warming cult; however, in this book he sticks to the facts, and, in any event, it is the wonderful illustrations of Peter Schouten that I wish to point out, since this is as close as we’re likely to get to having an idea of what these creatures looked like. Pictured below is the Choiseul Crested-pigeon, late of the Solomon Islands (and probably wiped out by cats, which were introduced sometime in the early 20th century).


The Escorial, published by Newsweek Books as part of its “Wonders of Man” series, includes a photograph of the library in that famous palace, built by His Most Catholic Majesty, Philip II. I’ve always fancied having a library that looked like this one (if I had the space and money).

”Kick Me” Signs Stimulus Results to Have Impact By April 1st

President Obama says that the effects of the stimulus will be felt by April 1st. Very appropriate timing. I wonder what those results will be. An uptick in inflation? The Dow at 6,000? A revival of the Alien and Sedition Acts? Hazard a guess (while you can!) in the comments section.

Royal Family a Little Touchy

An Australian "writer" (I use the term advisedly, since only seven of the fifty printed copies of his novel ever sold), has been pardoned, after having been imprisoned in Thailand for a passage in his book that apparently "dishonored" the royal family. In related news, a a Swiss man, also imprisoned in Thailand (not for committing literature, but for defacing images of the monarch), has been pardoned, as well.

As ODS (Obama Deification Syndrome) becomes more prevalent in the U.S., perhaps we'll be seeing some of the same kind of thing.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Rookies

The Obama Administration - as opposed to the Obama campaign - strikes one as being startlingly amateurish. From the inadequate vetting of cabinet appointees to the clownish performance of the White House Press Secretary to the constant backing and filling on foreign policy, the executive branch of government is starting to look like a Burger King being run by a fumbling bunch of pimply teenage rookies during the temporary absence of the manager. The difference, of course, is that it looks increasingly doubtful that the lack of managerial competence within this administration is temporary. Perhaps a visual analogy of the Obama administration's performance to date would be helpful...

Assortment

1) Too bad, in a way. This, alone, probably would have gotten him thrown out in 2012.

2) Congressman Gohmert has an excellent idea that should be strongly nudged along.

3) At least one banker takes a bite out of TARP, turns to colleagues and asks “Does this taste funny to you?”

4) HuffPo falls prey to hoax, issues “Best. Correction. Ever.” (H/T: Are We Lumberjacks?)

5) Kathy Shaidle spots fertile ground for new converts to the ROP (Don’t like one Gitmo? How about scores of them?)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Happy Feet Friday

Trombonist Will Bradley and Drummer Ray McKinley headed up a swing band in the early 1940’s that specialized in boogie-woogie. Here’s a tune called “Boardwalk Boogie” (the opening piano work is performed by the great Freddie Slack).




Unfortunately, there is no video available of the outfit’s biggest hit, “Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar”, which they recorded in 1940; however, there is a curious little music video of the piece by Ondřej Havelka and His Melody Makers, a Czech swing band that follows the original arrangement very closely (note - Havelka looks and sounds like Wally Cox, so you’ll need to make some allowance for the vocals; but I’ll say this for him: he’s no slouch on the dance floor).

George Bush's Failed Coup Attempt


"It's a Jehovah's Witness. Let's just pretend we're not home, Laura, and eventually he'll go away."

Paco Enterprises Responds to the Mortgage Crisis

Are you one of those people who, through no fault of your own, purchased an overpriced house with no money down that you couldn’t afford, and are now facing foreclosure? Did you max out on your equity line under the spell of HGTV propaganda and pour tens of thousands of dollars into remodeling your kitchen in hopes of selling your house, only to find out that marble composites have replaced granite as the countertop du jour, and that the sheriff is not leaving your front porch until you accept the eviction papers? Then Paco Enterprises has good news for you!

Never behind time in grasping the handle on the gravy bowl of taxpayer largesse, Paco Enterprises is pleased to report that some of that stimulus cabbage has been earmarked to assist you in buying a new house: the Paco Cube. That’s right, a sprawling three square meters of sumptuous living space, with shower and toilet, and a pop-up lid for ventilation. Buy a second one and use it for a home office, where you can sit in complete peace and quiet while mulling over your next brilliant investment. And when it’s time to hand in your dinner pail, you can even be buried in it! (Also currently in development, a slightly smaller version called the Yes-We-CAN).

(H/T: Captain Heinrichs and Spot the Dog)

A Rare Treat

JP: Spurgeon, the Philippine quail that cook prepared last night was delicious. Do you know whether she has any more?

Spurgeon: Unfortunately, she does not, sir. It is apparently no longer available.

JP: Mm. Pity. Well, then, ask her to prepare the ivory-billed woodpecker, will you?

Spurgeon: Very good, sir.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

From the Shelves of the Paco Library




Today’s selections feature three fictional detectives, as different from one another as can be, but each possessing his own unique set of superior sleuthing skills that makes the stories highly entertaining.

Ernest Bramah Smith (he dropped the “Smith” from his name as a writer) was a bit of an odd bird, whose various careers included farming, journalism, and, late in life, editing a trade magazine for clergymen. He wrote fiction and non-fiction, including a futurist war novel and a collectors’ book on English coins. Very little is known about his life, but he has created a memorable detective in the person of Max Carrados, an amiable and patient man of penetrating vision – this last attribute made all the more remarkable by the fact that Carrados is blind. His disability only serves to sharpen his other senses, and to disarm both clients and malefactors in his quest for the truth. His friend and occasional partner is Louis Carlyle, a “private inquiry agent” and ex-solicitor who had been struck off the rolls – unjustly (he claims, at any rate) - for “falsifying a trust account.” Bramah wrote numerous short stories starring his blind sleuth, which were published in the Strand magazine (frequently getting top billing over another fictional detective you may have heard of: Sherlock Holmes). The stories present excellent puzzles and include much warmth and humor in the interplay between the cheerful Carrados and the somewhat prickly Carlyle, as they track down thieves and murderers in Victorian and Edwardian London.

E.C. Bentley published a highly-lauded mystery novel, Trent’s Last Case, in 1913. Probably too well-known for me to comment on, I would like, instead, to point out that the hero, Philip Trent – a painter who brings to the task of solving crimes the artist’s skill of seeing things in unique perspective – appeared in a dozen short stories, as well, published under the title, Trent Intervenes. Trent is well-served by his encyclopedic knowledge of everything from heraldry to wine, and his affable, but courageous, character sees him through some very ticklish situations. He seems to be known to everyone, and everyone knows his worth as a man of discriminating intelligence and good judgment, so you will find him spending most of his time solving mysteries instead of applying brush to canvas. These are elegantly-written little gems of the mystery genre for enthusiasts of the traditional English “who-done-it.”

We now enter another time and place, entirely: Southern California in the post-war years; a paradise marred by vice, where Ross MacDonald’s protagonist, Lew Archer, moves among alcoholic starlets, seasoned conmen and cold-hearted gunmen as the last of the old-school hard-boiled detectives. Although the name is taken from Sam Spade’s partner in The Maltese Falcon, Archer’s character was openly modeled on Raymond Chandler’s quintessential private eye, Philip Marlowe. The Name is Archer brings together seven short stories published between 1946 and 1955, in which the hero – tough, smart and true to his rigorous personal code of honor – solves a series of noir-style mysteries. MacDonald (the pen name of Kenneth Millar) also wrote 18 novels featuring Archer, two of which were made into movies starring Paul Newman (The Moving Target and The Drowning Pool; Newman’s character was named “Harper” in the movie versions). When I finally worked my way through Chandler’s short stories and novels, I was glad to discover that Ross MacDonald had essentially picked up his option on the classic American gumshoe. If you haven’t treated yourself before to an encounter with Lew Archer, there’s no time like the present.

Thanks, But I Believe I'll Steer Clear of Your Minefield of Planted Axioms

"In things racial we have always been and continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards." Thus spake our newly-minted Attorney General, Eric Holder.

Nice try Eric, but it'll take more than fightin' words to get your boss to fess up to being a lily-livered poltroon for sitting in the "Reverend" Jeremiah Wright's church for twenty years listening to all that race-hustling, anti-semitic BS without saying a word in protest (until, of course, it became necessary for "reasons of state"). You keep goadin' him, though, fella!

In other Obama news: Plan 9 million From Inner Space.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The View From Paco Tower



(Written transcript of Brad Smilo's taped interview with J.P.)

Hello, this is Brad Smilo of World News Tonight, and I’ve been given the opportunity to interview that extremely reclusive captain of industry, J. Packington Paco III, whose vast network of interlocking holding companies, far-flung affiliates and secretive joint ventures has played such an important role in the development of low-end consumer products and, not coincidentally, in boosting the frequency of yard sales where his companies’ products take on a second life (or even a third or fourth).

I am here high atop Paco Tower in the penthouse home of our host, and I am standing in the…let’s see… judging by the size, this would be the living room, wouldn’t it?

No, sir. This is the foyer.

The foyer! My, my! That was Spurgeon the butler, incidentally. This is an extremely large foyer, Spurgeon. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an entryway with a stuffed rhinoceros serving as a hat rack.

It is unique, sir.

Now, what’s the purpose of this stuffed baboon? Ow!

I beg your pardon, sir, but that was not a stuffed baboon. It was Matilda, the cook. Can I get you some ice for that bruise, sir?

No, no. I’ll be all right. She packs quite a wallop, doesn’t she?

Yes, sir. No doubt her many years on the pampas hauling cauldrons, iron grills and sides of beef among the gauchos significantly improved her musculature well above the feminine average. This is the library, sir. Mr. Paco is waiting for you in here.

I’m entering the library and I must say, it’s very impressive. I once saw the library of Philip II in the Escorial Palace, and this is very reminiscent of it – except on a much larger scale. Ah, here’s our host. Good afternoon, sir!

Come in, come in! Delighted to see you, Mr. Smilo. May I offer you some sherry, or perhaps a glass of Madeira?

Thank you, no. I’ve got to keep my head clear for the interview. You wouldn’t have a bottle of Yoo Hoo, by any chance?

Spurgeon, have we any Yoo Hoo on ice?

Yoo Hoo, sir?

Yes. That chocolate drink of which Mr. Wronwright is so fond.

No, sir. Mr. Wronwright took the unconsumed portion of what I believe is referred to as a “six-pack” with him when he departed.

Well, don’t worry about it. I’m not really thirsty, anyway. So, Mr. Paco, if we can get down to business…

By all means. I like a fellow who doesn’t beat around the bush.

First off, how is your corporate empire weathering the recession?

Mwaha! What recession, my boy? There’s still one born every minute, and they don’t stop buying during recessions. For example, perhaps you’re familiar with one of our subsidiaries, the Presidential Artifacts and Collectibles Organization?

Hmm. If you turned that into an acronym, it would spell…

Yes, it would, wouldn’t it? This company recently marketed the famous commemorative Obama coins.

Aren’t those the fifty-cent pieces that simply had a sticker of Obama glued on?

Gad, sir, you’re an observant chap! That was, indeed, one of our best-selling items. At $19.95 per coin, that’s a mark-up of over three thousand percent.

But it’s widely considered to have been a rip-off.

Nonsense, my boy! The marketing of these coins was a microcosm of the election itself, an object lesson in the negative returns that accrue to one who invests in empty rhetoric. At $19.95, I’d say the lesson came mighty cheap. By the way, perhaps you’d like to buy a pair of Teddy Roosevelt’s spats, or some custom-tailored long-johns that once belonged to William Howard Taft? You can use that item as a bedspread, you know.

No, thank you, sir. Tell me, Mr. Paco, what is your view on the economic outlook?

I fear that the body politic is infected with the socialist virus, Mr. Smilo.

Won’t that be bad for your business?

Oh, no, no. It just means that we’ll have to sell more products to the government. But since our target customers have always been…how can I put this?...people who are not greatly burdened with an excess of cognitive ability, I believe that our sales may continue to grow at an even faster pace since many of these same people either are, or will be, working for the state, and so will now be making purchasing decisions of a far larger order of magnitude. Mwaha! A fool and his money are soon parted, as they say; and a fool with access to a mountain of someone else’s money is parted from it at practically the speed of light. Let’s see, now…I’m thinking fleets of battery-operated cars…disposable battery-operated cars…I’m so sorry to cut our interview short, Mr. Smilo, but I feel a creative wave coming over me; you understand, of course? Spurgeon, please show Mr. Smilo to the door. Do come again, my boy.

No problem, Mr. Paco. Thanks very much for your time. And there you have it, folks; good times or bad, you can’t keep a captain of industry down.

Is Eight Years Enough?

Hell no! Obama may need the rest of his life to give us all that hopeychangitude he promised (H/T: Don Surber).

Lose 'Em

Friedrich Engels, Karl Marx’s straight man, wrote that “an ounce of action is worth a ton of theory.” And so it is, as Obama and the Democrats in congress have shot out of the blocks with their so-called “stimulus” bill, which has practically no transparent theoretical underpinning, but all the action that Democrat interest groups could possibly have asked for. Far worse than the mere pork, however, is the fact that the bill is an insidious attempt to inject socialism into our political economy. The stimulus bill is the smallpox-infected blanket by means of which the Democrats seek to weaken and, if possible, destroy the strong historical traditions of personal freedom and responsibility that have made America a great nation. It is a bridge to the “soft socialism” of Europe that has produced a teeming class of underemployed malcontents, a stagnant intellectual climate, and a vacuous culture that looks with impotent horror on the recrudescence of militant Islam. And it won’t do any good to say it can’t happen here. It can happen anywhere.

This is the main reason why I argue that Collins, Snow and Specter should be targeted for replacement. They have been given plenty of latitude to play at compromise and “aisle-spanning.” This was one occasion when it was essential for them to stand with the party, and they declined – and ignominiously so, since not one of the three could produce a single plausible reason for supporting the bill (I do not consider Collins’ leap off the ledge in response to her constituents shouting “Jump!” to be an acceptable excuse; nor was Specter’s maundering nonsense, which pretty much boiled down to “I didn’t know the thing was loaded!”, anything more than imbecilic rationalizing). No doubt the Republican Party needs to broaden its appeal, but not by continuing to support these cross-dressing Democrats. Take 'em off life support, I say. A smaller, but highly-principled, party may struggle in the short-term, but it will make of itself a beacon of genuine hope and change when the Obama Express runs off the tracks into the gorge.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Putin Thinks Obama Is Too Left-Wing

Hilarious! Putin is warning Obama about the dangers of excessive government interference in the economy. The CPUSA, however, thinks The One is on the right track (H/T: Seraphic Secret).

Meanwhile, Hugo the Prancing Ape succeeds in scrapping term limits in Venezuela - illustrating, once again, that the biggest long-term threats to democracy are ignorance and fear.


Let the Marxist Magic continue! "Is this your card?"

Update: Exciting discovery of a new element!

We Got A Deal for Yez



Listen up, Mr. Radio Station Owner. We tink it would absolutely be in yer best interest to start givin' time to liberal talk shows, see? Da public needs a choice, even if dey don't want one, know what I mean? It's good for 'em, like spinach.

Yeh, ya gotta nice little station here; lots'a fancy equipment, a classy building, plenty a' people on da payroll; must a' set you back a few hundred G's, right? It would be a real shame if somethin' were to happen to it all. Schedulin' some liberal talk shows is just about da best insurance youse could have right now.

See ya later, bub. I'll be listenin'.

An Important Birthday Notice

Miep Gies, the last surviving member of the group that protected Anne Frank and her family from the Nazis, celebrates her 100th birthday.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

You Said Milestone, Right?

It says here that "Obama Celebrates Major Milestone."

Hmm. Is that what it's called?



Update: A fine, wrathful look at Democratic theft from a "furriner." (H/T: Don Surber)

$1.6 Billion Dollars for "Science"

Gateway Pundit reveals that the stimu-lose bill includes $1.6 billion for a rather broad category designated simply as "Science."

Well, now, here are some worthy recipients for some of that science getus.

Update: Richard McEnroe discovers a not very surprising instance of indifference by the Obama administration to one particular group of health care recipients.

Sunday Funny

Some imaginative folks in India have hit upon the novel idea of making soda pop from cow urine. Can't wait to pour myself a nice, tall glass of sparkling Bossie soda (watch it fizz!)

Oh, and this is interesting: Joe Biden is going to lead a delegation to the Special Olympics (H/T: Exurban League).

Susan Jumps In

Senator Susan Collins - whose face, quite irrelevantly, reminds me vaguely of a gourd - had this to say about her vote for the stimulust package: "This crisis is extraordinary, and my constituents don’t expect me to stay on the sidelines. They expect me to jump in. People don’t want us to be the party that says no, just no.”

I hope your constituents will entertain the same sentiments the next time it's necessary to placate an angry volcano god. But before that happens, the least you can do is stop nurturing the myth that the Republican Party was only willing to say "no." There were, I believe, at least two separate Republican-sponsored proposals for a genuine, low-pork stimulus bill. But perhaps you were too busy with all those photo-ops featuring you and Harry Reid and your sister quisling from Maine, Olympia Snow, and Specter the Specious to find the time to read alternative proposals - although I'm sure you managed to wade through all thousand+ pages of the bill you wound up voting for...Right?

No Republican tent should be big enough to hold these three. When the chips are down, you can't count on them, and the most revolting thing is not that, without their help, the stimulus bill might not have passed. The thing that sets my teeth on edge is the cover (however thin) of bipartisanship that they've provided for the biggest Democratic raid on the treasury in history. It is an uncomfortable and ironic fact, I suppose, but the Republican Party is going to have to get a lot smaller before it has any chance of growing again.

Update: Hardened bunkers, anyone?

Update II: Say, how about some shamnesty? (H/T: Friend and commenter, Skeeter)

More Book Covers

A few more curious items from the Paco Library (click to enlarge).

Pictured below is a volume of plays and poetry by Oliver Goldsmith. It is bound in seal leather, which, I suppose, accounts for the extremely soft and “puffy” feel.


I like leather-bound books, when I can find them, and the Franklin Library and Easton Press have obliged by publishing classic works of literature and history between leather-covered boards, on acid-free paper, with gilt-edged pages. Unfortunately, the designs can run to the fairly gaudy. Here are a couple: the first is The Pilgrim’s Progress, and the second is The Brothers Karamazov. Elegant or over the top? You be the judge.




The Limited Editions Club also published deluxe editions, and, if anything, went even crazier with materials and design. When I saw this one, the first thing that occurred to me was that it must be a recipe book. But no, it is, in fact, On Conciliation with the Colonies, and Other Papers on the American Revolution, by Edmund Burke. A close look at the design reveals it to be something in the American colonial mode.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Assortment

1) Rodger Thomas says that Michael Moore would like to hear from us.

2) Judd Gregg: “Hey! This really is a a crap sandwich!”

3) Arts & Ammo can help you fortify yourself against the advent of a stimulus victory

4) Captain Heinrichs sends a link to the very appropriately-named Car Lust Blog; the piece featured in the link pertains to the classic Hudson Hornet. I saw one at an auto show in Richmond once – gleaming black with gold trim, souped-up engine, like new – and only the presence of Mrs. Paco prevented me from offering my house in exchange for it.

5) Tim Blair has an excellent column on the Victoria wildfires.

6) El Campeador has a plan for when they close Gitmo.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Feet Friday

Big Joe Turner was one of the giants of blues and R&B, and had an exceptionally long career, spanning nearly 60 years, from the 1920's, when he shouted out the blues from behind a bar in Kansas City, to the 1980's. He first achieved a level of national fame when he teamed up with boogie-woogie pianist Pete John Johnson - first for the 1938 "Spirituals to Swing" concert at Carnegie Hall, and subsequently at New York's Cafe Society.

This video is from the mid-50's and features Turner with a swingin' small group performing "Shake, Rattle and Roll".

Hey, Maybe Being an Enemy of the State Won't Be So Bad

Paco Enterprises wants to get way ahead of the curve as our country becomes a one-party state, so I’d like to get suggestions from you all now on where you think our gulags should be located. I’m thinking Florida or Arizona; at least, those are places where I’d like to do my time. With California, you’ve still got that earthquake business, and anyplace it snows is just too cold for my aging bones. I also figure that with a president whose economic stimulus plan is going to result in loads of people being out of work, there’s no point in making us do slave labor since we’d pretty much be competing with folks outside the gulags; so, we may be looking at kind of a “country club” gulag environment – golf, tennis, perhaps cleaning up the compound occasionally (for example, picking up discarded nicotine patches, ‘cause you know they’re gonna deny us smokes).

If we act now, we may be able to get what’s left of the Republican Party to negotiate a few prime spots where we conservatives can be incarcerated. This is my vision:


Camp Hope and Chains

Did George Soros Trigger the Banking Crisis?

Hey, I’m just askin’ (H/T: Protein Wisdom).

In any event, if there was an electronic bank run of $550 billion dollars, then someone in the government must know where it was going - but, interestingly, they’re not saying. If we’ve got to choke down a trillion dollar shitburger, in addition to the TARP money, we ought to at least demand some explanations. Transparency, anyone?

My own guess is that investment funds and other large holders of liquid assets – spooked by recent and likely failures of insurance companies, banks and Fannie Mae - saw a collapse of the financial system as imminent and, depending on your point of view, either (a) panicked, or (b) reacted in perfect accordance with market signals; however, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Soros helped to nudge things along (he stands to profit from the purchase of toxic assets), and he has sparked at least one financial crisis before.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Congratulations, Scott!

Via Ed Driscoll comes the news that Scott Ott - the comic genius behind Scappleface - has landed a regular gig at the DC Examiner.

Here's a recent Scrappleface scoop.

From the Shelves of the Paco Library



In this age of instant communication, and the coeval evolution of various forms of pidgin English, of which text messaging is perhaps the most prominent example, the epistolary art form, sadly, seems to be dying out. Fortunately, historical examples are abundant, and the Oxford University Press offers an excellent sampler in The Oxford Book of Letters, edited by Frank and Anita Kermode.

The wonderful thing about letter writing is that it imposes little in the way of thematic constraints: the same letter may combine discussions of great matters of state with a complaint about the weather, or mix lofty philosophy with dirty jokes. Instructive, gossipy, humorous, despairing, giddy – what we write to friends, family, or the editorial page of the local newspaper provides us with an opportunity to assert our personality in ways that are often forbidden us in face-to-face or telephone conversations because of shyness or propriety or simply the ping-pong pattern of conversational give-and-take, or which are simply not suited to the protocols of the increasingly omnipresent BlackBerry. I hope the excerpts below will give you a taste of what I mean.

Sydney Smith, an English clergyman whose life straddled the turn of the 19th century, was far better known for his wit than for his theological opinions. Here he discusses an exercise in matchmaking undertaken by him and his wife (to John Allen, November of 1826):

“You will be amused with John Murray’s marriage. It was concocted at Mr. Philips under the auspices of Mrs. Sydney and myself. The lady has £60,000, is a considerable Greek Scholar, a Senior Wrangler in Mathematics and the most perfect Instrumental Musician I ever heard. Ten days finished the matter; indeed she has no time to lose since she is 39. I never saw two longer fatter Lovers, for she is as big as Murray. They looked enormous as they were making love in the plantations. She is so fond of Murray that she pretends to love porridge, cold weather and metaphysics. Seriously speaking it is a very good marriage, and acting under the direction of medical men, with perseverance and the use of stimulating diet there may be an heir to the house of Henderland.”

Mark Twain, writing to W.D. Howells in July of 1885, describes some of the feelings I have experienced myself in occasionally diving into a disappointing book:

“You are really my only author; I am restricted to you; I wouldn’t give a damn for the rest. I bored through Middlemarch during the past week, with its labored & tedious analyses of feelings and motives, its paltry & tiresome people, its unexciting & uninteresting story, & its frequent blinding flashes of single-sentence poetry, philosophy, wit, & what-not, & nearly died from over-work. I wouldn’t read another of those books for a farm. I did try to read one other – Daniel Deronda. I dragged through three chapters, losing flesh all the time, & then was honest enough to quit, & confess to myself that I haven’t any romance-literature appetite, as far as I can see, except for your books.”

The novelist, Evelyn Waugh, was a prolific letter writer (there are at least three books out that consist of nothing but his letters and those of various correspondents). The following is from a letter he wrote to his wife Laura in February of 1940, during his stint in the Royal Marines:

“Yesterday was an alarming day. The Brigadier suddenly accosted Messer-Bennetts & me & said, ‘I hear you are staying in camp for the week-end. You will spend the day with me.’ So at 12.30 he picked us up in his motorcar and drove all over the road to his house which was the lowest type of stockbroker’s Tudor and I said in a jaggering way ‘Did you build this house, sir?’ and he said ‘Build it! It’s 400 years old!’ The Brigadier’s madam is kept very much in her place and ordered about with great shouts ‘Woman, go up to my cabin and get my boots’. More peculiar, she is subject to booby-traps. He told us with great relish how the night before she had had to get up several times in the night to look after a daughter who was ill and how, each time she returned, he had fixed up some new horror to injure her – a string across the door, a jug of water on top of it etc. However she seemed to thrive on this treatment & was very healthy & bright with countless children.”

The book includes well over 300 letters, and runs the gamut from the sublime (Sir Thomas More) to the ridiculous (Groucho Marx, whose hilarious letter to Warner Brothers involving a dispute over the use of the word “Casablanca” in a film title is, alone, worth the price of the book). Whether or not you’re a letter writer, there’s something here to please almost any reader.

Might As Well Be Democrats

I'm very much with Jeff Goldstein on this. All they had to do was vote no, and the Dems would have been forced to come up with a better bill (and of course, we already know that Specter was clueless about some of the bill's provisions, but doing something - anything - no matter how potentially stupid and dangerous is better than actually using your noodle to come up with something better). We need to have a smaller, united party that stands for something - which is the only way to persuade people to support it and ultimately make it a majority party again - rather than this loose ball of yarn that's come unraveled and is spread all over the place.

No Man (Least of All this One) is a Hero to His Valet

The president entered the Oval Office in an exuberant mood. The Senate had just passed its version of the stimulus bill, and the Democrats were on the verge of nationalizing the economy and strengthening their stranglehold on the public treasury. Obama was so excited he could hardly contain himself; he shadow-boxed for a few seconds with sheer glee (accidentally hitting the wall and bruising his knuckles), and then, while sucking his hand, did a touchdown dance of the sort performed by professional football players. There was a knock on the door.

“Enter! Ah! There you are!”

A silver tray glided through the air borne upon the massive palm of Obama’s personal gentleman’s gentleman, a Haitian immigrant by the name of Gustave Napoleon Toussaint D’Orleans – known to one and all as Gus. He was a tall, well-built man whose skin glistened like highly polished ebony, and his eyes shone with a sardonic intelligence that, truth to tell, frequently made his employer feel a bit uncomfortable.

“Your refreshment, monsieur le President.” Gus set the tray on the president’s desk, heaved an enormous sigh and turned on his heel to leave, when Obama called him back.

“Gus, the Senate passed the stimulus bill! Isn’t that great news?”

“If you say so, monsieur le President.”

Obama was not about to let anyone dampen his joy tonight, so he said to his retainer, “Why so gloomy, Gus? This is a historic victory.”

“If you will permit me, sir, there are une or deux little items that I fail to comprehend.”

“Such as?”

“Well…in some of your speeches, you have blamed our economic malaise on monsieur Bush’s excessive spending, no?”

“Yes, that’s right.”

“And yet, thees…how do you say…thees steemulus bill is énormément.”

“So?”

“Eef ze spending, she is bad under monsieur Bush when she is so big” (he held his large hands about six inches apart) “then, how can it be zat ze spending, she is good when she is so big?” (he now held his hands three feet apart).

Obama smiled somewhat condescendingly. “It’s all in who is doing the spending Gus. Bush spent a lot of money on two foreign wars which made him very unpopular.”

“Ah, but eet was to defend us from ze mussulmen terroristes, no?”

“Well, yes, but that’s not the way you build up a permanent constituency of dependant voters.”

“And yet, zere are zose pipples who say zat ze steemulus bill will cause more harm than good.”

“Gus, have you been watching Fox News again?”

“Eet is ze opinion of ze Congressional Budget Office, monsieur le President.”

“Listen, just ask any economist on the staff and they’ll tell you that this bill is the only way to avoid catastrophe.”

‘But zere are many economistes who deesagree.”

“Oh, sure, guys with bachelor’s degrees from some of those cow colleges in flyover country.”

“Ze leest includes at least trois Nobel laureates.”

“Well, then, ask Tim Geithner; he’ll tell you.”

“I took ze liberté of do-eeng zat ver’ theen, sir, when he was waiting to see you zis morning, but monsieur Geithner just gave me ze blank stare and said he did not have time to discuss ze matter because he was late for a rendezvous with H&R Block.”

Obama pursed his lips in frustration. Obviously, Gus was immune to logic. He decided to try the tack of raw self-interest.

“Look, Gus, consider this. Now, you’re an immigrant to this country, right? The bill even lets undocumented aliens benefit from its provisions.”

Gus drew himself up to his not inconsiderable height of six foot two. “Pardon, monsieur le President; I was an immigrant, but I am now a naturalized citoyen. I deed not come to zis country seemply to make ze monnaie, but because I am devoted to ze liberté. And I pay ze taxes, no?, so I why should I, who waited six years for ze privilége of becoming a citoyen of thees great conetree pay for ze benefits accorded to zose who brak ze law?”

“Come on, Gus! Now you’re just being a stuffed shirt. Take my word for it; this is a great piece of legislation.”

“Oui, monsieur le President…eef eet works.” Gus withdrew from the office, with something of the hauteur of an Austro-Hungarian ambassador who has just delivered an ultimatum to a Balkan princeling.

Obama’s cup of Hawaiian Isles Kona Coffee Mocha Latte Light stopped half way to his lips. “’If it works’”, he thought to himself. “What could Gus possibly have meant by that?” The beverage went down hot, but it did little to dissipate a sudden icy feeling that had arisen in his stomach and was spreading rapidly up the very elastic cord that constituted his spine.

Wonder Boy

Tell me again why Tim Geithner is the one man who can figure out the banking crisis.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Assortment

1) Well, I guess now that we’ve signed on to trillions of dollars in government funding, we’ve got all the bases covered. Right?

2) Guess who gets the blame when the stimulust fails? As if you didn’t know!

3) Hey, I didn’t know this was in the stimulus bill. But then, neither did Arlen Specter, and he voted for the thing (Putz!)

4) If we absolutely have to have Democrats, why can't they all look like this?

5) Confound it! I typed up a bit today featuring an interesting argument on the subject of the stimulus bill between Obama and his gentleman's gentleman (a Haitian immigrant whom I have named Gustave Napoleon Toussaint D'Orleans) and forgot to e:mail it to myself. Oh, well. Be sure to catch it tomorrow evening.

What is it Called When You Are Governed by the Imbecilariat?

Moronocracy? Duh-archy? Pelosi provides the stupid, ably assisted by an all-star cast of dunderheads, including Zero himself; you name the form of government.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Your Crap Sandwich is Ready!



What, no chips?

Droit de Seigneur



In pushing the $1,000,000,000,000 stimulus bill, Obama and the Democrats are arguing for the right to ravish our cash flow before we’ve had the enjoyment of it ourselves. Aside from the inestimable harm that the bill will do to the economy, there is the far greater tragedy that the bill, and the intellectual arguments that are being set forth to defend it, are laying the foundation for a genuinely socialist economy. Just imagine; twenty years ago socialism – and its ugly brother, communism - was on the run, not only intellectually but in practice, as leftist police states fell, one after the other, and even the “soft” socialism of western Europe began to show signs of giving way to the superior logic of Reaganomics. Now, we seem to be making a retrograde lurch back to the 1930’s, a decade when competing statist “isms” led to the Nazi death camps, the Soviet gulags and a world war (and, let’s not forget, to the worst economic depression in American history).

A man may learn the lessons of history, but Man seems destined not to. In 1992 Francis Fukuyama wrote what, in retrospect, seems to have been a fatuously optimistic essay called The End of History, which held that the fall of communism represented the final and permanent victory of western liberal democracy. Quite to the contrary, it strikes me that liberal democracy is a fragile thing that will always be under pressure from the enemies of personal freedom, and will always require a vigilant defense – even in the country where it has reached its highest level of development. I fear that we Americans may not yet have done with revolution, although I pray that the next one will take place only on the intellectual battlefield.

Hog-Drover-In-Chief



Gateway Pundit has posted a couple of fascinating pieces on the stimulus bill, which point out that, in the first place, the Congressional Budget Office has opined that the recession would end in the second half of 2009 without the bill, and in the second place, the bill is more than twelve times the size of the anticipated dip in GDP this year.

Is this the change you were voting for, Obama supporters? Were you really looking forward to ushering in European-style socialism?

Obama’s first big test as president, in my view, was to lead the way in devising a truly bipartisan bill that represented some mutually-agreeable compromise on stimulus that would benefit the economy over the short term (preferably one loaded with tax cuts). He has utterly failed to do that, by permitting Pelosi and Reid to construct the biggest slop trough in American history, and he has put himself in the forefront of this travesty by pushing the theme of “stimulus bill vs. collapse of civilization.”

Oh, and by the way; while it’s true that Republicans are currently going through a major spiritual struggle to define the party’s raison d’être, can we all at least agree that Collins, Snow and Specter are beyond the pale? I know, I know; it’s hard for skittish politicians to buck the raging ignorance of an increasingly large part of our population, but that’s what leadership is all about, folks.

“All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for congress to do something” - Anonymous

Detective Paco Demands a Bailout!



Where's the stimulus for gumshoes? I mean, besides Sheila... (H/T: Rebecca).

Wildfire

Our prayers go out for those who have suffered so horribly as a result of the wildfires in Australia (some of which may stem from arson, apparently). Let's hope it rains soon.

More from Dog Fight at Bankstown.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Next Vacation

Mike Pancier (who has his own blog and also posts as "Cigar Mike" at Babalu) has put together a video of his trip to Death Valley. As one who loves the desert places, I'll have to see if I can convince Mrs. Paco to go there later this year (or next).

Is this that "Better World Image" Barrie Was Talking About?

Yo, Preshizzle, look what you're doing, man; even the foreigners are beginning to notice (H/T: Dan Riehl).

Don Surber Needs Your Help

Having determined that attracting the ire of President Obama is good for conservatives working in the pundit racket, Don Surber has launched a petition that requests the O-Man to declare, "You cannot get anywhere if you just read Don Surber.”

Do Don a solid and sign his petition. Then, we have to think of ways to get Obama to start saying publicly things like "Paco must be destroyed!" or "I forbid you to read Paco Enterprises!"

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Sunday Funny

Mrs. Paco was out the other day walking Mabel - the official dog of Paco Enterprises - and saw a hearse in front of someone's house. Note the very appropriate license tag.



Update: What?!? An exposé on me? Lies, all lies!!

Update: Wait a minute. Wronwright's the one in the dress. Truth, all truth!

Stimulust



Republican senators Snow, Collins and Specter, pictured above, are expected to support the cloture vote on the pork gorge-a-palooza known as the "stimulus bill" on Monday. Let there be no mistake: this is not bipartisan legislation. The three liberal Republicans represent nothing more than the lipstick on a very Democratic pig.

Herding Voters



David Plouffe: Say, Mr. Axelrod, I hear dat da census is goin’ to be moved from da Department a’ Commerce to da White House under Mr. Emmanuel. Da census, now, dat’s like some kinda t’ermometer, ain’t it?

David Axelrod: Why, no, Mr. Plouffe, youse are tinkin’ a’ centipedes. Da census is like when every so often we do a head count of all da people in da country, mainly so’s we can tell where we ought to draw da lines for da congressional districts.

David Pluffe: Well, now, dat’s a shrewd move, Mr Axelrod!

David Axelrod: Oh, indubiously, Mr. Plouffe. Ya heard a’ Joe Stalin, ain’t ya?

David Plouffe: Yeh. He’s a bookie in Joliet, right? Got pinched in a federal sting last month.

David Axelrod: No, no, Mr. Plouffe. Joe Stalin used to be da top dog in Russia. He said what counts is not how many votes dere is, but who counts ‘em. And dere a lot easier to count when ya got yer own people bunched up in da same districts bein' counted by yer own boys, see? Dat also gives ya whaddaya call “concentrated fire power”. Ya spread da opposition out amongst a whole lotta yer own mugs an’ dere votes don’t do much damage.

David Plouffe: So, dat way, de Republicans get marginated, right, jus’ like Bugs Moran’s old mob?

David Axelrod: Yeh, dat’s right.

David Plouffe: Dat Stalin; he had quite a head on his shoulders!

David Axelrod: Hey, youse ain’t seen nuttin’, yet!

Porkulus

Swamp Woman provides a great analogy.

Update: Mark Steyn; read the article (you'll be glad you did!)

Friday, February 6, 2009

Assortment

Update: Incorrect link in # 4 fixed (thanks, Jeff!)

1) Harry Reid is still trying to seduce a few senators from the wuss contingent of the Republican Party to join the Democrats in turning the U.S. Government into the biggest receiver of stolen property in history. Not to worry, though; the Senate may shave a hundred billion or so off the stimulus bill - although, actually, that just means that it would be about the same size as the House version (quick recap: “Yo, I’ll have a crap sandwich, no mayo. Wait, let me have mayo. No, on second thought, hold the mayo.”) To put things in the proper perspective, think of Michael Moore washing down a half dozen whoppers with a diet Coke. Obviously the Democrats aren’t listening to Professor Mankiw (H/T: Currency Lad). Can we gamble our future in this liberal crap game? Yes, we can!

2) Richard McEnroe provides a great example of the Obama administration’s new policy of “opaque transparency” (or is it “transparent opaqueness”?)

3) Dirty Barrie? Jules Crittenden doesn’t think so.

4) A sub-assortment: quality links from The Shadowlands.

5) Today is Ronald Reagan’s Birthday! Robert Stacy McCain remembers.

Andrew Sullivan Continues To Cover Himself With…Well, Not With Glory, Exactly…

Not content with disgracing himself by obsessing over the identity of Trig Palin’s mother (shocking truth: Sarah Palin, as originally advertised), Sullivan now seems to be claiming that he was duped into supporting the Iraq war, “arguing that neoconservatives gulled him into supporting a war against the Saddam Hussein regime whose true, hidden, secret purpose was to create a permanent occupation of Iraq and a state of permanent war in the Middle East and Israel. And why? To benefit Israel and its most irredentist elements, a cause that is, by this analysis, more important to us neoconservatives than the fate of the United States.” (Note: the link is to a post at Contentions, the Commentary magazine blog, where John Podhoretz bats him around; you know I’d never send you to Sully’s place without a warning)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Happy Feet Friday

Eleanor Powell gives us a dose of "Fascinatin' Rhythm" (to a boogie beat!)

Let's Get this Pig Off the Road!



The so-called “stimulus bill” represents nothing more than 20 years of pent-up Democratic spending lust. This is one of the most irresponsible pieces of legislation I’ve seen in my lifetime, and the distortions to our (heretofore relatively) free-market economy will guarantee sluggish growth for years to come, further eroding our savings, the value of our retirement funds and our ability to compete in a global market. It’s being sold as legislation that will do our country good, when it is really nothing more than an avaricious grab for taxpayer money that will enable Democratic politicians to do well (or so they think). One has to be blind not to see that if fiscal malfeasance created the serious problems we are now facing, then the solution can’t possibly be more fiscal malfeasance. Democrats are wolves who wish to insinuate themselves among the livestock under the guise of shepherds, and in the end, they will create a wasteland that will not even sustain themselves. To succeed in this, of course, they must of necessity hold themselves out as good stewards of the national patrimony, and cloak their motives under the gaudy imposture of patriotism.

The notorious 18th century English thief, Jonathan Wild, who managed a well-organized army of robbers, cutpurses and housebreakers, was eventually brought to trial and was hanged in 1725. Shortly before his execution, he penned a document - Jonathan Wild’s Advice to His Successor - which was intended as a guide for future aspirants to the heights of successful criminal enterprise, but is not without value as a model for the hypocritical politician. These lines seem particularly apt:

“The public good, which has ever been the mask of self-interest and private avarice, must be always on the tip of your tongue. This notable phrase is swallowed down by the multitude with great approbation, and they turn their eyes with reverence upon the man who only makes use of the mean external show of it. They cannot be made to think ill of the person whose favorite topic is the welfare of the country, notwithstanding his more secret intentions are upon the most selfish principles in nature; for who can imagine that he who constantly brawls forth his good sentiments, his esteem and affection for his fellow creatures, and is at every juncture wracking his brains for schemes and plans for their benefit should have any such principle as his own interest at heart?”*

The Democratic Party – A Whole Lot More Than You Bargained For.

(* From the book, Con Men and Cutpurses: Scenes from the Hogarthian Underworld, edited by Lucy Moore; Penguin Books, 2001)