Saturday, July 31, 2010

Sunday Funny

True AND funny.

Update: Ed Driscoll has a funny take on the Prince of Wales.

Bumbling Barry's Super-Competent Research Team

The president commiserates with unemployed woman, and holds her up as an example of the need for more government props. Turns out, though, that she had been fired by her company about a month after she had been charged with prescription drug fraud. She had also previously been charged with grand (later reduced to petit) larceny.

A perfectly understandable mistake

MSNBC gets Democrat "Screamin'" Anthony Weiner mixed up with an angry bear.

Blogger down...

...but not out. Stacy McCain has sent out an appeal on behalf of Stogie at Saber Point who is facing foreclosure. All donations appreciated.

Friday, July 30, 2010

And to think I used to believe that Barney was the stupid one

Andy Griffith is now peddling ObamaCare.

Rule 5 Saturday

Betty Hutton and sister Marion sing “Basin Street Blues”.

Dang!

I completed a new J. Packington Paco story on my lunch break at work today and forgot to send it to my home email. Watch for it Monday!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Happy Feet Friday

The Mills Brothers say, swing it, sister!

Water-boarding’s too good for him

How about an anthill?

Perhaps the worst thing to emerge from the release of thousands of classified documents on the war in Afghanistan by the execrable Julian Assange is the names of hundreds of Afghan citizens who have co-operated with the allied forces.

Tunku Varadarajan – most decidedly a non-word-mincer – rips Assange a new one. And even though this Assange vermin is a self-described anti-American and anti-capitalist gadfly, I tend to agree with Varadarajan that his motives are rooted in a pathological need for attention:
What does Assange want? Does he really want the free world to cringe under constant threat from al Qaeda? If we fail to defeat this threat, what does Assange think will happen? Do we have any sense that he cares? Or is it the case, frighteningly, that Assange doesn’t really “want” anything, in a programmatic, civilizational sense, and that these explosive episodes of “gotcha” leaks are an end in themselves, a personal moral terminus, a sort of self-righteous, self-congratulatory onanism?
Sounds about right to me – although, at this stage, I’m not so much concerned with what Assange “wants” as with what he ultimately “gets”, which I hope will be something that comes under the heading of justice (however rough).

Why Australians should vote Labor

It’s all right here, in this instructive video.

(H/T: M.P.)

Denatured conservatism

I don’t remember who it was – David Frum, perhaps? David Brooks? – but someone not long ago said that American conservatives should be more like the British Tories.

Really? You mean like David Cameron, British PM? As far as I’m concerned, he has already been weighed and found wanting with his idiotic pronouncements on Gaza (apparently the world’s first prison camp with a shopping mall).

The Tory brand seems to have suffered a considerable decline since the Thatcher years. There may be an object lesson in here somewhere for the Republican Party: if you’re nothing but Non-Democrats – or worse, a cheap Democrat substitute – then you’ll never be anything but a kind of rebound date for voters who occasionally have a spat with the majority party, but nonetheless consider it as their main squeeze, always one step away from hugs, tears and reconciliation. Get on board with your idea guys – people like Paul Ryan – and let’s start winning some hearts and minds, let’s get the peaceful revolution underway (‘cause there’s gonna be a revolution, peaceful or otherwise).

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Time for Teresa Heinz Kerry to whip out her checkbook (again)

John Kerry has, er, "voluntarily" agreed to pay some $500,000 in taxes to Massachusetts in connection with that yacht he's been docking over in Rhode Island.

Being married to a rich woman means never having to say "my bad!"

From the shelves of the Paco library



The apotheosis of Ernesto Che Guevara is arguably the biggest historical scam of the 20th century. Aided and abetted by a gaggle of journalists and academics, this swaggering, narcissistic opportunist, devoid of genuine accomplishments, and so utterly incompetent at practically everything he set his hand to that Fidel Castro finally had to find a way to get rid of him, was magically transformed into a courageous and inspiring warrior, a Christ-like revolutionary hero. Humberto Fontova’s superb demythologization, Exposing the Real Che Guevara and the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him, is a large bucket of cold water thrown into the rapturous faces of Guevara’s unthinking admirers.

This is an angry book, but righteously so. Fontova’s cousin was beaten and murdered by the secret police, and his own father was arrested just as the family was about to board a plane to Miami (that particular story had a happy ending). Yet the personal animosity is always under control, and typically finds expression in the sardonic recounting of the absurd ironies of Che’s life.

Of which there were many. Born in Argentina to a family of the decayed aristocracy, Guevara originally left the country with the aim of making his way to the United States because he was interested in the money-making opportunities that abounded here. Although he studied medicine, there is no evidence that he ever actually acquired a medical degree. A certified hero of the Cuban revolution, he despised Cubans (and was despised by them). Author of a celebrated treatise on guerilla warfare, his ineptitude at managing guerilla operations in the Congo and Bolivia (and even in Cuba) was so vast that it is difficult to parody (although faithful readers of this blog know that I have tried!)

Che was a brutal sadist when he was dealing with helpless prisoners, but an anxious, eager-to-please lapdog in his dealings with Fidel; he even composed a poem celebrating the Maximum Leader (and you will be hard-pressed to find anything more nauseatingly unctuous in the by-ways of attempted literature). In the end, he wound up fatally alienating Castro and his Soviet masters, and was whisked away to his doom in the ill-fated Bolivian adventure, where, after months of wandering around the countryside and through the jungle, frequently lost, he disregarded the orders he had given to his comrades to fight to the last man, and surrendered to a unit of Bolivian soldiers -
with a full (unfired) clip in his pistol.

It is maddening (albeit highly instructive) to see how this bumbling psychopath garnered the unearned plaudits of a fawning press. The New York Times, as one suspects, was especially prominent among Che’s admirers, featuring the sometimes idolatrous communiqués of Herbert Matthews; however, the media bamboozlement extended far and wide. Jon Lee Anderson, a writer for the New Yorker delivered himself of the following paean: “Bravery, fearlessness, honesty and absolute conviction…Che lived it.” Time Magazine offered up this valentine: “Wearing a smile of melancholy that many women find devastating, Che Guevara guides Cuba with icy calculation, vast competence, high intelligence and a perceptive sense of humor.”

The prisoners at La Cabaña fortress might have been forgiven for overlooking these qualities. Let the following example, provided by one of the author’s sources, suffice:
”One morning the horrible sound of that rusty steel door swinging open startled us awake and Che’s guards shoved a new prisoner into our cell. He was a boy, maybe fourteen years old. His face was bruised and smeared with blood. ‘What did you do?’ we asked, horrified. ‘I tried to defend my papa,’ gasped the bloodied boy. ‘But they sent him to the firing squad.’”

Soon Che’s guards returned. The rusty steel door opened and they yanked the boy out of the cell. “We all rushed to the cell’s window that faced the execution pit,” recalls San Martin. “We simply couldn’t believe they’d murder him.”

“Then we spotted him, strutting around the blood-drenched execution yard with his hands on his waist and barking orders – Che Guevara himself. ‘Kneel down!’ Che barked at the boy.

“ ‘Assassins!’ we screamed from our window.

“ ‘I said: KNEEL DOWN!’ Che barked again.

“The boy stared Che resolutely in the face. ‘If you’re going to kill me,’ he yelled, ‘you’ll have to do it while I’m standing! Men die standing!’”

“Murderers!” the men yelled desperately from their cells. “Then we saw Che unholstering his pistol. He put the barrel to the back of the boy’s neck and blasted. The shot almost decapitated the young boy.
Fontova’s book is a fine corrective to the hagiographical pap that has flowed from the pens of ignorant and dishonest admirers of one of history’s biggest revolutionary poseurs. Highly recommended.

Update: Linked by the great Bob Belvedere.

Safety tip for men

Stacy McCain highlights the importance of men maintaining their Crazy Woman Early Warning Systems in top condition at all times.

By the way, here's a photo of the femme fatale in Stacy's story (Sheesh! She looks like she just ate a wine glass).



And gals, you need to be careful of the low cunning of the narcissistic male (H/T: Ace of Spades).

“An antique nightmare”

Robert Fullford at the National Post writes about the (sadly) enduring hell of North Korea. Imagine getting a visit from the “Public Standards Police”:
Refugees described Public Standards Police who would often visit private homes to be sure that the mandatory glass-framed portraits of Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il were kept clean. Each household was provided with a white cloth, to be used exclusively for cleaning the portraits.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

Revolution Day pretty much cancelled for lack of interest

Historically, Revolution Day in Cuba has been a big commie party, featuring long-winded speeches by Fidel and his brother Raul, plus cameo appearances by other well-known Marxist no-accounts.

Looks like this year, though, nobody wanted to bother.

Another antipodal dog story

First we had the case of a dog in New Zealand that shot his master in the buttocks with a rifle.

Now we've got a dog in Australia that was denied entrance to a restaurant because he was gay.

Spencer Ackerman, JournoList enforcer

It's Matt Labash vs. Spencer Ackerman! (That pile of shredded, pimply flesh on the sidewalk is Ackerman).

Obama's brilliant mid-term election strategy

Hey, things could be worse.

They sure could be, Barry! We might have been invaded by space aliens, or our livestock could have been ravaged by an outbreak of the West Indian dry gripes, or Disney could have made a G-rated cartoon version of Chinatown. All kinds of disasters might have befallen us that didn't.

Of course, what Obama's really talking about is how - you got it - the Republicans messed things up and the Democrats are doing their darnedest to make everything right. You know, with astronomical deficits, high taxes and incompetent government meddling in the economy. Oh, and endless, amateurish floundering in foreign policy.

Mark my word: George Bush will be more popular than Obama by the end of the year.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Summertime

We've had some record high temperatures here at the Paco Command Center, along with occasional heavy storms. That's probably why the place is starting to resemble a jungle; although it's a colorful jungle.

The petunias seem to love the heat.



So do the cannas (which I like to refer to as the Virginia Tech lilies, because of the weird color combination: orange and purple).



There's a reason these plants are called butterfly bushes: I counted a dozen or so butterflies, representing three species. The flowers also attract bees and humming birds.



This is a spider flower. I don't know why it is, but the pink flowers don't open up until the early afternoon; the white ones stay open all the time.



The Texas stars are coming in like weeds (which I suspect they may actually be; pretty ones, though).



This thing looks very unprepossessing; however, it's one of the most useful plants we have. It's called lemon-balm (smells exactly like lemon), and if you crush the leaves and rub the oil on your skin, it keeps the mosquitoes away (tested by Mrs. Paco, herself, who has always been, for reasons unknown, one of nature's leading mosquito magnets).

Australian Politics explained for American readers (Part II)

Following up on my earlier installment, I have put another two or three minutes of exhaustive research into this subject in order to round out the course of instruction.

Although Australia is a parliamentary democracy, the Prime Minister is only the head of government; the head of state is the British monarch (currently Elizabeth the Second, who was named after a famous cruise ship). This arrangement stems from Australia's membership in the "British Commonwealth", an organization of independent countries that were formerly British colonies ("commonwealth" is a term that refers to the tendency of those countries to treat private wealth as if it were the property of the state).

The issue of monarchy has generated controversy in recent years, as there are those who have argued that the Governor-General – the Queen’s representative – is actually the head of state. This matter is yet to be fully resolved; however, it is anticipated that the Queen and the Governor-General will eventually settle the argument through the legal procedure known as “trial by combat”, a sort of duel in which two combatants would traditionally don armor and wallop each other with swords or maces until they ultimately wound up looking like a couple of aluminum garbage cans that had been handled for six months by unionized trash haulers. Over time, trial by combat has been substantially watered down, so that in this instance it will most likely feature a cucumber-sandwich-eating contest.

There is a movement in Australia to do away with the constitutional monarchy, led by Republicans; however, like their American counterparts, they are largely marginalized and ineffectual. Nonetheless, it has been noted that every time Queen Elizabeth gets a head cold, the fortunes of the Republicans begin to look up (this is known as the "Prince Charles" phenomenon).

There is also a “Green Party" which is best known for using insulation to burn down private residences. Contrary to the party’s hopes, this policy has not led to increased support for its platform.

An interesting sidebar to a discussion of the Australian political system is the country's efforts to lead the way in developing an official information technology program; Australia even operates a blog known as Tim Blair (this is probably either some kind of acronym, or perhaps the name of a well-known figure in Australian history; unfortunately I don’t have time right now to look it up).

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Sunday Funny

Since time immemorial, people have wondered which came first, the chicken or the egg.

Well, we're about to find out...



Hey, important safety tip. Always lock the doors of your car; otherwise it might get hijacked by a bear who takes it for a joyride and keeps the neighbors up all night beeping the horn.

We are responsible for protecting ourselves

Kathy Shaidle links to a very interesting piece by Marcus Cole on the subject of gun ownership.

New Blog

Anita Moncrief has started a new blog - Emerging Corruption - the purpose of which is self-explanatory. She's got her work cut out for her.

Rule 5 Saturday

The peerless Eleanor Powell performing a dance number with a Spanish theme.



Bonus! Fishersville Mike has a video of Kellie Pickler in retro-mode.

A corpse flower by any other name...

...would smell as rotten.

It's science-time here at Paco Enterprises. Check out this real time video of a blossoming corpse flower (notice the "stink-o-meter").

(H/T: Mrs. Paco)

Friday, July 23, 2010

One, many Eric Holders

The Competitive Enterprise Institute has compiled a list of the nation’s worst state attorneys general (pdf document).

It’s a thirty-page report, but well worth reading. Not surprisingly, California’s Jerry Brown heads the list. Just a taste:
Modernization of America’s refineries is critically needed to maintain a secure supply of fuel. The nation has a significant shortfall in refining capacity, which unnecessarily forces over-reliance on uncertain foreign supplies. Despite this need, in 2008, Brown used the threat of litigation to delay modernization of a refinery by Chevron. This represented a conflict of interest. Brown’s personal fortune came from the “family oil business,” which received a “fee for each barrel” of oil exported from Indonesia, in a concession granted by that country’s former military dictatorship. Chevron’s oil refineries in California are designed to process Alaskan crude, to compete against oil from Indonesia in California’s power plant market. Brown has also meddled beyond his own jurisdiction by pressuring other states to block new power plants within their own borders.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Happy Feet Friday

Jimmy Dorsey and his orchestra performing one of their biggest hits, “Long John Silver”.

Of context and apologies

With a symphony of chirping crickets as background music, Professor Jacobson waits for those apologies to come rolling in from the left.

Australian politics explained for American readers

The political system down under can be a confusing thing to get a handle on for Americans. Having studied the issue extensively for a couple of minutes during my lunch break today, I believe I have figured out the basics.

Australia has what is known as a “parliamentary system” of government, which it inherited from England, which is a country inhabited by “poms” – or, as they are sometimes affectionately called, “pommy bastards”. Parliamentary government in Australia, however, has undergone significant changes from the original template. The government is headed by a “Prime Minister”, who is selected from among the members of the majority party of the House of Representatives. This is accomplished in the following fashion:

All of the majority party representatives climb into the beds of a convoy of Holden Utes, which are driven at high speed down a bumpy dry-wash. The convoy proceeds back and forth until all of the representatives, save one, have fallen off of the vehicles. The person who has succeeded in clinging on to the end becomes Prime Minister.

The last Prime Minister was Kevin Rudd, whose experience living in a car during his youth is thought to have given him an advantage in the selection process. He was best known as an avid consumer of his own earwax. One day, he had finally eaten so much earwax that he regained his hearing. But his happiness was short-lived, because, by the time he could hear again, practically the first thing he heard was the clamoring of his fellow party members for his removal. This was accomplished by means of a “deal” (not, as one would expect, as the result of the Ute selection process) under which Julia Gillard – chosen by her colleagues because of her ability to distract voters from noticing her Party’s mistakes by virtue of her mesmerizing red hair and peculiar accent – replaced Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister. She has, I believe, called for an “election” (which involves two Ute convoys – one filled fill with Labor Party candidates, one filled with Liberal Party candidates – playing a mass game of chicken).

Cricket and bandicoots figure into the business somewhere, but I haven’t quite worked that out yet.

JournoBust II

Iowahawk has some hilarious tweets about the latest Journolist revelations (from Jim Treacher via Captain Heinrichs).

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

New Black Panther Party and Ku Klux Klan Announce Merger Plans

Paco World News Daily (PWN’D)

In a move that rocked the political world, the New Black Panther Party and the Ku Klux Klan announced at a joint press conference today in Washington, D.C. that the two organizations are going to join forces. In what is being heralded as a merger of separate-but-equals, the two groups have pledged to create a consolidated corporate entity. Although the new organization will continue to maintain independent executive structures, there will be an interlocking directorate co-chaired by representatives of the two original firms.

New Black Panther Party Minister of Propaganda, Emperor Shabazz Ono Wambezi (f/k/a Clarence Jackson) stated that “This combination, even allowing for the need to create separate washroom facilities, will permit our two groups to reduce overhead through the sharing of office space and information technology management services. It’s a win-win situation.”

Asked how two groups that obviously loathe each other could work together effectively, KKK Exalted Grand Dragon, Otis Suggins, dismissed the problem as immaterial. “This is a revolutionary breakthrough in marketing. The merger of our organizations will enable us to develop what we like to call ‘synergistic polarities’ which will allow us to assemble a very diverse customer base and achieve dominant market share in the racism sector. Our ultimate goal is to create a one-stop hate shop.”

The new entity is already contemplating potential acquisitions, and has initiated discussions with Goldman Sachs about the possibility of floating a variable-rate Mexican-peso bond to fund the purchase of a controlling interest in MEChA, as well as structuring leveraged buy-outs of Aryan Nation and Nation of Islam.

Although the NBPP and the KKK anticipate finalizing the merger by the end of August, there is at least one legal hurdle to overcome. Both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Interstate Commerce Commission are evaluating the merger in order to determine whether the proposed consolidation will result in a monopoly in the racism industry. PWN’D contacted Marvin Adler, spokesman for the ICC, who said the issue was very much in play. “We’re still in the preliminary stages of assessing the proposed merger,” Adler stated. “It’s important to maintain a level playing field, even in the area of mindless bigotry.”

The joint press conference broke up unexpectedly when law enforcement officers from the ATF stormed the dais and arrested both Emperor Shabazz and Exalted Grand Dragon Suggins on outstanding illegal-weapons charges. As the two men were led away in handcuffs, a smiling Emperor Shabazz told reporters, “This is just a temporary setback. You can’t fight Blair’s Law.”

What’s the rush?

Powerline has a post featuring some intriguing speculation by former CIA deep-cover agent “Ishmael Jones” on the unusual speed with which a swap was arranged for the recently arrested Russian agents.

Journobust

Stacy McCain has an interesting follow-up post on the Journolist affair (the original Daily Caller story is here).

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A harrowing escape, a tragic love story

A Catholic prisoner and his Jewish girlfriend escape from Auschwitz, are accidentally separated, and briefly reunited decades later.

Who do you say that I am?

Ed Driscoll has some fun with Richard Cohen’s Obamyopia. Washington Post columnist Cohen, while giving signs of increasing frustration with our president, is still bafflingly baffled by who he really is. Ed says:
Who indeed. If only Cohen worked for an organization that had people paid to gather facts and…what’s the word I’m looking for — reported them to the public — yes, that’s it! — before going all in on a candidate. Perhaps someone should invent such a business. It could combine a mass audience with a veneer of… hmmm, what’s a word that rhymes with mass? Class! Yes, that’s it.
You could print it on paper for a retro vibe and call it news on paper, a paper of news, something like that. I’m sure there’s got to be a catchier name for it, and it’ll come to me eventually. But in these days of media experimentation, such a venture could really catch on with elitist readers, particularly inside the Washington Beltway.
Obama is an arrogant, inexperienced ideologue whose climb up the political career ladder has been assisted by the Democratic machine at every step. He has been insulated from the vetting process of our rough-and-tumble political system by a host of cronies and operators, in an environment (Chicago) where, with the endorsement of the permanent ruling class, failure is almost impossible. He grasped the brass ring of the presidency, lifted up by an adoring media, for which his candidacy and ultimate victory represented the happy ending to the gloomy narrative of the Bush years (and if the honor of objective journalism – always something of a myth – became hopelessly compromised, then it was surely a small price to pay for the pleasure of seeing, and for the prestige of helping to engineer, the desired conclusion to the great liberal fairytale). An easy victory in the presidential election, on top of his charmed (albeit short) previous string of political successes, gave Obama an exalted sense of his own intelligence, wisdom and competence, as well as a peevish disdain for those who disagreed with him, which congeries of vanity, alienation and obliviousness to public opinion impelled this advocate of statism – bred in the cocoon of big-city machine politics, steeped in anti-American radicalism - quite naturally to expand the reach of the state in all directions. His imperviousness to the empirical proofs of the falseness of his worldview has permitted him to lay the groundwork for social and economic ruin – a prospect that, not surprisingly, has alarmed a majority of America’s voters, whose grave misgivings have already begun to be felt at the ballot-box, and will, in all likelihood, only grow stronger and more widespread in November.

Whatever else he is, Obama is not an enigma.

George Woolf Honored

Canadian-born George Woolf, the jockey who rode the glorious Seabiscuit to victory against War Admiral in one of the most famous match races in history, has been honored by his home town with a statue, featuring Woolf atop his illustrious steed. Small Dead Animals has a photo and a link to the story (H/T: Captain Heinrichs).

Here’s a video of the 1938 race.



And if you haven’t read Laura Hillebrand’s book on Seabiscuit…well, what are you waiting for?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hugo Chavez, Cold Case Investigator

President Bozo, ruler of the Evil-Clownocracy of Venezuela, recently had the remains of Simon Bolivar exhumed, based on his hunch that the Liberator had been assassinated (the historical record says that he died of tuberculosis).

Chavez went into ecstasies after the corpse was dug up.
Chavez opened Bolivar's tomb unannounced, spreading the news on Twitter: "What impressive moments we have lived tonight!! We have seen the remains of the Great Bolivar!"

"Our father who is in the earth, the water and the air ... You awake every hundred years when the people awaken," Chavez continued. "I confess that we have cried, we have sworn allegiance."[I guess the benchmark for eloquence in Venezuela is pretty low - Paco]
In the first place, I hadn't heard that the revolution would be tweeted, but there it is. More importantly, I'm sure all sane people look forward to the day when Chavez joins Bolivar "on the other side".

Virginia

I get a lot of junk mail - who doesn't? - but occasionally a letter or flier will include something interesting.

Today I received a brochure listing local businesses and their services and wares, but on the front was a list of official Virginia stuff.

The state beverage is milk (Sure. Try ordering a glass of that at Phat Boyz in Hopewell).

The state bird is the cardinal (it's also the official bird of, I believe, a half dozen other states).

The state boat is the Chesapeake Bay Deadrise (State boat? Well, here's ours, at any rate).

The state dance is the square dance.

The state dog is the American fox hound.

The state fish is the brook trout.

The state flower is the American dogwood.

The state fossil is the Chesapecten jeffersonius (a mussel shell; I guess you have to live out west to have a cool state fossil like Triceratops or Allosaurus).

The state insect is the tiger swallowtail butterfly.

The state shell is the oyster.

The state tree is the flowering dogwood.

The state Chuck Norris fact is: "Chuck Norris sleeps with a pillow under his gun".

Ok, ok, that last one isn't actually official, but it ought to be.

Palin's typo makes her laughingstock in all 57 states

When conservatives do it, they're just exhibiting the typical stupidity all right-thinking people have come to expect. When liberals do it, it never really happens at all.

By the way, where is Bob Schieffer on this? Or was he out of town when she tweeted?

Signs that the stimulus spending is having an impact

No, no, no. I'm not talking about data proving the success of the stimulus spending bill; there isn't any.

I'm talking about the signs going up all over the country to mark specific projects as beneficiaries of the stimulus money, those green road signs heralding the taxpayer-supported munificence of your federal government. I Hate the Media reports that some $20 million has been spent on these things - which is probably a boon to sign manufacturers, but of no practical use to anyone else.

Very...FDR-ish, wouldn't you say? Brings to mind the old National Recovery Act, the logo of which appeared everywhere during the early years of the Roosevelt administration.


Oh, and incidentally, the National Recovery Act was eventually struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Republican invertebrates

As Dan Riehl points out, we've got a long row to hoe while people like Mitch McConnell are in charge of the Republican Party. More from Dan on the Republican Party's Permanent Committee of Not Getting It here.

On the subject of the Tea Party and the malicious charges of racism launched by Democratic shill groups like the NAACP, I would urge Tea Partiers to denounce the charges as baseless and move on. Part of the Democratic strategy is surely to put the Tea Party on the defensive and change the public focus from its comprehensive criticism of the hard-left policies of the Obama administration to an endless round of speculation on a spurious racial agenda.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Assortment

Washington Rebel has two good posts on film noir, here and here.

Middle Coast highlights some Republican opportunities in Wisconsin, Missouri and Illinois.

If you’re thinking of dropping by to see Steve Burri, you might want to call first.

If you’ve tried talking to a liberal lately, it probably went something like this.

As the Blogprof shows, sometimes you have to keep hammering on the obvious (or, of course ObamaCare penalties represent a tax).

Nice Deb has a nice selection of stuff, including more on Donald Berwick (NHS fan-boy), and a video of the always enjoyable Andrew Klavan.

Australia is wrestling with its own immigration problems, as bingbing points out in this post.

Nobody takes it to the street like Richard McEnroe.

Moonbattery has a look at New Black Pampers.

The pursuit of happiness

Dad29 has some pertinent observations on Jefferson's concept of the pursuit of happiness, which was definitely not a call for equality of outcomes.

Meg Ryan, foreign policy genius

Is anybody maintaining a list of Hollywood's "useful idiots"? I'd do it myself, but the project is so vast in scope that I don't have the time.

According to Elena Ives at David Horowitz's News Real Blog, actress Meg Ryan has become a member in good standing of the anti-Israel crowd. She's giving the Jerusalem Film Festival a miss, apparently because of Israel's blockade of Gaza, and the recent flotilla incident in which peace-loving blockade-runners attempted to kill Israeli defense force personnel.
Ryan reneged on her commitment to appear at the festival last May after Israeli Commandos were ambushed on a sham “Freedom Flotilla” ship by Turkish terrorists concealing mayhem under a thin veil of phony altruism.
Oh, and you can add Dustin Hoffman to the list, as well (if you haven't already).

Update: Correction. According to one source, Hoffman had never been scheduled to attend.

Hey, you know who's responsible for the failure of Obamanomics?

Republicans, of course. Stacy McCain has the video of Joe "Plugs" Biden ladling out the usual soupe à la merde.

Best wishes to the Captain

Friend, commenter, correspondent and tireless internet detective Captain Heinrichs is due for a spot of surgery, so let's offer up those prayers for a quick and complete recovery.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Who is lying about North Korea?

WHO, that's who.
Amnesty's report on Thursday described North Korea's health care system in shambles, with doctors sometimes performing amputations without anesthesia and working by candlelight in hospitals lacking essential medicine, heat and power. It also raised questions about whether coverage is universal as it — and WHO — claimed, noting most interviewees said they or a family member had given doctors cigarettes, alcohol or money to receive medical care. And those without any of these reported that they could get no health assistance at all.

Garwood said Thursday's report by Amnesty was mainly anecdotal, with stories dating back to 2001, and not up to the U.N. agency's scientific approach to evaluating health care.

"All the facts are from people who aren't in the country," Garwood told reporters in Geneva. "There's no science in the research."

The issue is sensitive for WHO because its director-general, Margaret Chan, praised the communist country after a visit in April and described its health care as the "envy" of most developing nations. [Emphasis mine]
Here's the full report from Amnesty International.

Sunday Funny

Great idea! Feed the kids and reduce the clown population at the same time.

Presidential Grimace

Lance Burri recently invited readers to make their own Obama motivational posters using a photo that he provided. See the results here (including one by yours truly).

Thinly veiled crowing over the events of 9/11

Jules Crittenden has some interesting thoughts, and an excellent suggestion, concerning the planned high-rise mosque in New York.
If anyone is sincerely interested in fostering better relations with their Christian and Jewish brothers, how about a 15-story Islamic contrition and anti-terrorism center? Devoted, among other things, to Middle East democracy and free speech.
Meanwhile, Ace takes a look at the main backers of the project.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Rule 5 Saturday

The delightful Martha Raye says “Watch the Birdie.”

Some people never learn

And I mean never. According to this WSJ article, some of the same financial institutions that got burned in the economic melt-down are boosting their loans to subprime borrowers.
Even as lenders struggle to pull themselves out of the credit crisis, signs of a new and potentially dangerous infatuation with risky borrowers are emerging. From credit cards to auto loans to mortgages, the hunger for new business as the crisis ebbs is causing some financial institutions to weaken lending standards and woo borrowers who mightn't be able to pay.
What particularly galls me is that Fannie Mae may be throwing caution to the wind - again.
Fannie Mae, seized by the U.S. government in 2008 to avert the mortgage company's failure, launched an initiative in January that allows some first-time home buyers to get a loan with a down payment of as little as $1,000.
This situation is going to be further exacerbated by the passage of the new financial institution regulation bill, which is frontloaded with requirements that will have the effect of shifting more taxpayer-subsidized money toward poor credit risks (hey, thanks Scott Brown!)

This is the kind of thing that pushes the needle on my pessimism-meter into red-line territory. Not so much the boom-and-bust credit cycles; they are inevitable due to that indefatigable vice, human greed. But those generally sort themselves out without the costly and permanent intervention of the state. The government under Obama and the Democrats (and under Bush, too, to some extent) has created an organic intervention, a living thing that keeps growing in quantum leaps and bounds and threatens to ruin not only the impecunious, but the prudent, as well.

As citizens, we can no longer afford to act like lazy or uninterested members of a corporate board, delegating everything to the chief executive officer and his staff. We have to stay informed and, when necessary, throw the rascals out. So let’s prepare to do some serious lifting and heaving this November.

Update: Jeff S. sent a link to this related story. Scary stuff.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Arlen Specter, tape worm in the body politic

Arlen Specter, who, for a brief moment, signaled opposition to the Kagan Supreme Court nomination, now says he'll vote for her and, by the way, he could really use a job in the executive branch of government.

The 2012 elections, folks. They're all about getting rid of parasites.

A government as smart as its people

I was afraid of this. We must all be morons.

Captain Kick-A$$...

... getting his ass kicked.

Happy Feet Friday

Al Donahue and his band go Jumpin’ at the Juke Box.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Dog bites man, not newsworthy

Dog shoots man in the buttocks...awesomely newsworthy.

(H/T: Confederate Yankee)

Post title of the week

From Weasel Zippers.

Bonus Chuck Norris fact: When Bruce Banner gets mad, he turns into the Hulk. When the Hulk gets mad, he turns into Chuck Norris.

Arizona being sued by the government...of Mexico

The government of Mexico is trying to conduct foreign policy through litigation, as it joins in a suit filed by - who else? - the ACLU.

I was listening to Mark Levin on the radio during the drive home this evening, and heard him mention that the Landmark Legal Foundation has filed a brief against the Mexican action. Here's the brief filed by Landmark.

One of the reasons Mexico is horning in so vigorously is because illegal immigration to the U.S. from that country accomplishes two things: (1) illegals in the U.S. send a ton of money back home, and (2) the flow of people into the U.S. serves as a safety valve, permitting a long succession of corrupt regimes to avoid implementing changes that would improve the lives of the population in general, and the poor in particular.

Where will our president come down on all of this?


C'mon. You knew the answer, didn't you?

(Photo gleefully lifted from Moonbattery)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lead shoes now available from Paco Enterprises!

You don't want to float away, do you?

Turning the Tables in Maryland

Cynthia Yockey says, "Go, Jim Rutledge!"



"Listen up, you hicks! It's time to stand up to the machine!"

Farrakhan sends ransom note to Jews

Louis Farrakhan (f/k/a Louis Eugene Walcott) has sent a letter to numerous Jewish organizations in an attempt to shake them down for "reparations". This bizarre epistle is expressed in the form of a request, but there's an "or else" quality to the conclusion:
should you choose to make our struggle to our people more difficult, then I respectfully warn you . . . that the more you fight and oppose me rather than help me to lift my people from their degraded state, Allah (God) and His Messiah will bring you and your people to disgrace and ruin and destroy your power and influence here and throughout the world.
I trust that Jews everywhere will respond with a horselaugh to the braying of this jackass.

Bronco Bustin’, Aussie Style

For Australia, I imagine this is just a garden variety dog-bites-man story – so to speak – the kind of thing Skeeter or Robert Blair (or even Tim Blair) might do perfectly sober, just for a lark. But I found it pretty…extraordinary.

Actually, though, the strangest thing in the story, to me, was this line:
[The man] had been chucked out of a pub in the town of Broome for being too drunk.

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Cold War is Back, Baby!

At least, on the silver screen. Jason Apuzzo at Libertas discusses the new film, Farewell, which looks to be an intelligent depiction of some of the events leading up to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

The Road Map

Why Paul Ryan is rapidly becoming one of my favorite Republicans.

Were the “stolen generations” really stolen?

Keith Windschuttle says “no”. Roger Sandall reviews the third volume in Windschuttle’s The Fabrication of Aboriginal History. Sandall indicates one of the reasons why it is important to know the truth:
It is disagreeable reading about frontier conditions on the outskirts of ranches and remote country towns, about the alcoholism and violence, the promiscuity and disease, the child abuse. But it is essential to set down these things, precisely because the regiment of academics who created the myth of Australia’s Stolen Children try hard not to mention them. In their eyes it is tasteless and insensitive to do so—and no doubt much else besides. Yet these pathologies are the blindingly obvious reason for child removal. Not racism. Not cultural genocide. These horrors constitute the suppressio veri that requires the complementary suggestio falsi of “racism” to explain why children were separated from their parents. Their suppression also constitutes the lie at the heart of the so-called Stolen Generations.

BP spills a cup of coffee

Funny video at Confederate Yankee.

Al Franken, the Felons' Choice

Al Franken - Minnesota senator and angry clown - may have won election with a boost from his jailhouse supporters.

Race-Based Justice (Eric Holder Strikes Again!)

J. Christian Adams writes at Pajamas Media about a voter-intimidation (and voter-fraud) case in Mississippi that makes the New Black Panthers look like milquetoasts (H/T: Instapundit).

Also, don't miss Michelle Malkin's terrific roundup of Eric Holder's many miscarriages of justice (How do we impeach thee, let me count the ways...)

Update: Maggie's Notebook draws attention to CBS talking head Bob Schieffer and his interview with Holder, in which Schieffer is revealed as the world's least curious newsman.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Pretty much says it all



(Found at Moonbattery)

Question for the PE Comment Academy

Is the drill sergeant/therapist in this GEICO commercial the same guy who appeared in Full Metal Jacket? I never saw the movie, only a clip from it, but this sure looks like him. Hilarious ad, incidentally.



Update: "No, Einstein, that is not a tank."

Friend and commenter Mojo honored

I wish I could get a dinosaur named after me!

At least the border with Canada is secure

Or at least, it seems to be secure against the return of U.S. citizen Sylvie Nelson.
Sylvie Nelson's border crossings are anything but routine. Customs agents sometimes order her out of her car. Twice, they handcuffed her in front of her young children. Once, agents swarmed her car and handcuffed her husband, too.

She tells them: It's not me you want, it's a man with the same birth date and a similar name. Agents always confirm that and let her go.

Then it happens again. And again.

"I can understand one missed identification," Nelson said. "But over and over and over again?"

Nelson, a 44-year-old white woman, keeps getting snared at the Canadian border because she apparently shares some key identifying information with a black man, possibly from Georgia, who is in trouble with the law. While such cases of mistaken identity at border points and airports are not unique, Nelson's case is unusual in that only some of her crossings set off an alarm and because federal officials have not fixed the problem after almost two years.
(H/T: Mrs. Paco)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Taxpayers to take another blow to the solar plexus?

John McCormack at Hot Air has the details on a $400 million loan guarantee being floated by the Department of Energy to Abound Solar to finance "solar energy". One of the executive officers, Russell Kanjorski, was a principal in a now-defunct company that has already left the government holding the bag on $9 million in federal grants (Russell Kanjorski, incidentally, is the nephew of Democratic Rep. Paul Kanjorski of Pennsylvania).

Be sure to watch the video at the site linked. Paul Kanjorski is the perfect example of a congressional robber-baron. Why is he not being investigated? (Rhetorical question, of course.)

Sunday Funny

How to keep pigeons away from your pool.

Today's Chuck Norris fact: We live in an expanding universe. All of it is trying to get away from Chuck Norris.

When cops go bad

Or, in this case, when the leadership of our top law enforcement agency goes bad.

Ed Morrissey has more from former DOJ attorney, J. Christian Adams, this time on the subject of possible voter fraud in Minnesota, and the flat refusal of Justice to investigate.

John Steele Gordon at Contentions has a post underscoring Adams’ charges of nonfeasance by the DOJ in connection with the Motor Voter Law.

All of this is, of course, on top of Eric Holder’s outrageous attempts to protect the two New Black Panther Party thugs (who have become our country’s most infamous voter-intimidators) from facing their just desserts. The refusal of Holder to investigate evidence of crime and to prosecute wrongdoers, in order to protect members of favored constituencies in accordance with an ideology that supports the concept of “payback”, makes an absolute mockery of justice. Equality before the law is only secure so long as the majority accepts the concept of liberty and justice for all. As bad as previous institutionalized bigotry and oppression have been, our nation has come a long way toward expunging these evils, primarily because the majority has adopted the humane and moral position that society should not make legal distinctions based on race or ethnicity or religion. Does Holder really believe that the white majority, having done the right thing in abandoning institutional and statutory bigotry, including fighting a bloody civil war to effect these ends, is now going to sit back listlessly while he and his minions turn that same majority into second-class citizens in order to assuage the trumped-up “grievances” of Democrat-approved professional victim classes?

Corruption of the justice system by its supposed guardians undermines the people’s faith in the whole concept of the rule of law. The surest way to undo generations of progress in the area of race relations is to inject an element of revenge into the application of the law. For this, alone, Eric Holder may one day have much to answer for.

More on NASA's outreach program

First, from Nate Beeler, Washington Examiner cartoonist:



Secondly, Smitty has the lowdown on the proposed orbiting mosque.

Update: Here's a cartoon from Michael Ramirez on the same subject (via Powerline).

Taliban seeking smarter recruits

Monkeys, for example.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Rule 5 Saturday

Florence Hill and Bessie Dudley hoof it, backed by the great Duke Ellington.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Another guitar-strumming fool for Obama

Jimmy Buffett this time. Slublog over at Ace of Spades has rewritten Buffet's "Margaritaville" to mark the occasion.

Update: Bob Belvedere in the comments: "I'm reminded of something Alice Cooper said a few years ago: If you’re listening to a rock star in order to get your information on who to vote for, you’re a bigger moron than they are. Why are we rock stars? Because we’re morons. We sleep all day, we play music at night and very rarely do we sit around reading the Washington Journal."

What hath Eric Holder wrought?

The nation's chief law enforcement officer, Attorney General Eric Holder, let a couple of hoods off the hook in a voter-intimidation case, which act of malfeasance seems to have emboldened their fellows. Kathy Shaidle has a video of the New Black Panther Party's Minister of Stupid, Malik Zulu Shabazz, making perhaps not-so-idle threats against Glenn Beck and the Tea Partiers.

Malik Zulu Shabazz.

Right. And I'm Thorfinn Raven-Feeder.

Update: Shabazz, incidentally, was born Paris Lewis.

How about "reaching out" to these folks?

With the U.S. Air Force or something? Ed Morrissey has the horrible details on Sakineh Mohammadie Ashtiani, an Iranian mother of two who has been sentenced to death by stoning.

Is this one of those Great Moments in Muslim Science we're supposed to be celebrating? If there were ever to be a Paco administration, the extirpation of the Iranian regime would be foreign policy item #1.

Happy Feet Friday

One of the original “Big Three” of boogie-woogie (the other two being Albert Ammons and Pete Johnson), Meade Lux Lewis knocks out some hot eight-to-the bar.

Barack Obama: guilty as charged

As any professional investigator will tell you, if you’ve got overwhelming forensic evidence, you don’t need to demonstrate motive. I no longer care whether Obama is a closet advocate of the Cloward-Piven strategy, knowingly creating crises in order to expand the reach of the state, or whether he’s just a monumental idiot whose dreams of big government are immune to empirical analysis. His DNA and fingerprints are all over our nation’s current economic and foreign policy mess, and he needs to go.

The bill of indictment is long; here are just a handful of material items:

1) Obama has encouraged and signed into law several measures that have taken the deficit to astronomical and unsustainable levels. Health care, stimulus, “jobs” bills – you name it, he has demonstrated complete fiscal irresponsibility, and has shown a total disregard for the burden that this level of spending imposes on this and future generations. Throw in the big tax increase scheduled for next year, and we’re definitely seeing the private sector under siege.

2) He has refused to permit the federal government to do the one thing that – theoretically, at least – it ought to be good at: protecting our borders. There are now areas in the southwest where official warning signs have been posted to discourage travel by U.S. citizens, due to the violence resulting from drug and human trafficking spilling over from Mexico. The president’s response? To promise, and fail to deliver, additional resources to the border states, and to sue Arizona for passing a law that gives state and local authorities the right to merely request evidence of legal residency from persons who have been lawfully arrested or detained.

3) He has, with obvious malice, attempted to damage the long-standing, traditional bonds between the U.S. and Israel (and between the U.S. and the UK), in order to ingratiate himself with the corrupt regimes of the Middle East, and with anti-American tyrants in “emerging” countries.

4) He has abandoned any pretense of supporting civil rights by permitting his attorney general to adopt a program of overlooking civil wrongs committed by favored minorities (vide the charges made by J. Christian Adams in connection with the notorious case of the New Black Panther thugs).

5) He has demonstrated monumental incompetence in connection with the oil-spill in the Gulf, through inaction, submissiveness to union rules that have hampered both domestic and foreign assistance, and a refusal to cut through bureaucratic red tape.

6) He has nominated one of the most unqualified people in our history to serve on the Supreme Court (two, if you include Sotomayor), a person - Elena Kagan - who may lack experience, but apparently has all the proper left-wing ideological credentials.

Obama is the worst president in my lifetime – not even barring the hapless Jimmy Carter. I just hope we make it to 2012.

Update: Oh, and by the way, we don't want him for King, either.

From the shelves of the Paco library


In the preface to his collection of travel writings, When The Going Was Good, Evelyn Waugh wrote (the year was 1945), “My own traveling days are over, and I do not expect to see many travel books in the near future…There is no room for tourists in a world of ‘displaced persons’. Never again, I suppose, shall we land on foreign soil with letter of credit and passport (itself the first faint shadow of the great cloud that envelops us) and feel the world wide open before us.”

The world has, indeed, become in so many ways a crazy quilt of armed camps and bureaucratic obstacles, and the advances in communications technology over the last seventy-five years have perhaps watered down much of the “otherness” that once distinguished the far places from the cozy hearths of our own homes. But we can still savor the recorded experiences of those curiosity seekers who gallivanted about the globe before the advent of monolithic ideologies - and (now) religious extremism – began to knit certain countries and regions into outposts of hostile paranoia, unappreciative of the vagabond spirit (and always on the lookout for western hostages).

Richard Halliburton, in 1925, published his first travel book, The Royal Road to Romance, a best-seller that recounted his submission to wanderlust, and a description of the adventures that befell him in the vast territories he ranged, from Europe to China, and many points in between. Halliburton was in his mid-twenties when he embarked on his travels, and the work contains both the virtues and flaws of a “young man’s” book; however, the boundless enthusiasm and iron determination found in these pages – in addition to the variety and interest of incidents - more than compensate for the occasionally purple prose.

Halliburton climbed the Matterhorn and Fujiyama, visited the hauntingly beautiful site of Ankgor Wat, slipped past the sentries at Gibraltar to take photos (strictly forbidden by the British) from the summit of the Rock, carried on a running battle with train conductors on three continents, and was robbed by pirates after a day of gambling at Macao (the gang having been led by a young woman). The stories are replete with the author’s self-deprecating acknowledgement of his many inadequacies, as indicated in this account of a panther hunt in India:
Several days after I reached Dhamtari, Doctor Lapp had left the mission on one of his rounds of medical inspection…That very twilight a panther dared to come within a stone’s throw of our house, slaughter a calf and drag it into a glade half a mile away…Here was my chance to assume the rôle of a great defender of the weak, even though I had never before wielded any firearm more deadly than a bow and arrow. Not knowing one from the other I chose Dr. Lapp’s elephant-gun, since it was the most ferocious-looking in the collection, and accompanied by the owner of the calf, about eight o’clock staggered under my weapon’s weight to a tree that stood some three hundred feet from the carcass…The cramped position in the tree was becoming unendurable, and I was just on the point of abandoning the hunt when the bearer seized my arm and stared into the jungle. A shapeless black form emerged, and slinking close to the ground moved serpent-like toward the bait…Once beside the body he paused to reconnoiter, and I fired. One could have heard the rifle’s roar in Calcutta. The recoil knocked me completely – along with the native – out of the tree. I thudded to the ground on one side, the bearer on another, and the elephant-gun on a third. In three terrified leaps the panther was back in the jungle. I had not killed him, and my self-condemnation knew no bounds. To investigate the possibility of a blood-trail the bearer and I walked over to the carcass, and found that instead of slaying the panther in the best accredited Daniel Boone style, I had shot a large hole straight through the ample side of the dead calf.
Halliburton wrote several more travel books and – sadly, but perhaps fittingly – vanished at sea during an attempt to sail a Chinese junk from Kowloon to San Francisco in 1939.

Fidel Castro to release 52 of his nonexistent political prisoners

Babalu has the list. And technically, the Maximum Murderer isn't just releasing the prisoners, he's deporting them. Still, I can think of few regimes I'd rather be deported from.

Let Me In, Immigration Man

Say, why isn't Eric Holder's "Justice" Department suing Rhode Island? Or, for that matter, California?

And speaking of California, it's good to see that the state, in spite of its many fiscal problems, is keeping its priorities straight.

Update: Border security is also about protecting illegal aliens from the depredations of those who traffic in them. American Freedom explains.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

When outreach exceeds one's grasp

The Oval Office. Charles Bolden, NASA administrator, is meeting with the President

Obama: Charles, I saw you on Al-Jazeera the other day. Good work! You did an excellent job explaining how we plan to use NASA for Muslim outreach. By the way, how was this idea received in your focus groups?

Bolden: Well, initially, very well. There was support for the policy across a wide spectrum. Then, when everybody figured out that we weren’t talking about putting Islamic terrorists on a rocket and firing it off toward the sun, the enthusiasm died down quite a bit. I think people are having a hard time grasping what the relevance of NASA is to our efforts to build up Muslim self-esteem.

Obama: Huh. Go figure. Some folks have a strange inability to understand simple logic.

Bolden: To proceed from point A to point 3.

Obama: Exactly. Anyhow, I think this policy needs to be nudged along. I wasn’t planning on having NASA do any more space missions…

Bolden: Hey, not my job, right?

Obama: Right. But we may find it useful to make an exception in this case. I’m thinking we build another space station - add some minarets, a gold dome, maybe install a foot bath or two – put a few Muslim astronauts on it and then send the thing into orbit.

Bolden: An excellent idea, Mr. President. But there’s one small problem; if anything goes wrong, the Muslims on the ground will say that we conspired to put their space-dwelling co-religionists at risk. You know how suspicious those people are. Er, with good reason, of course.

Obama: Of course. So, no Islamanauts, eh? Well, what do you say that we keep the design of the space station, and send up our own guys? We can stock the ship with food that’s strictly halal. That ought to be a hit with the Muslim world.

Bolden: Sounds fine to me. What could possibly go wrong?

* * *

The space-station monitoring unit in Houston. Employees are rushing frantically to and fro in response to the unexpected approach of the return vehicle from space station Mohammed I.

Ground Control: Mohammed I, Mohammed I…this is the Houston monitoring unit…The return vehicle has detached from the station…What is going on? Over.

Commander: Houston, this is Commander Wingate. The return vehicle has detached from Mohammed I because we’re all, you know, returning. Over.

Ground control: You haven’t been authorized to return, Commander. Over.

Commander: Well, that’s just too damn bad, sonny! This is an emergency. Over.

Ground control: Commander, I don’t understand. What is the nature of the emergency? Over.

Commander: We’re all willing to put our lives on the line to serve our country, but we’ll be damned if we’re going to do it on a steady diet of falafel and lentil soup. Over and OUT!

ObamaCare: Still there, still needs to be undone

While the Great Obama Carnival of Incompetence continues to provide scores of freak shows, strange animals and other hair-raising forms of entertainment for us to goggle at, let’s not forget the main exhibit: the disastrous Democrat health care plan.

The latest development is Obama’s recess appointment of Donald Berwick as head of Medicare and Medicaid. Berwick is such an astoundingly bad choice that even the most arrogant president in U.S. history didn’t dare to turn him loose before a Senate confirmation hearing. Dr. Milton Wolf ( a second cousin of Obama, incidentally) has a rundown on some of Berwick’s more “interesting” views, including his lust for a UK-type government-run health scheme:
I am romantic about the [British] National Health Service; I love it.
Of all the decrepit, callous, death-dealing bureaucratic monstrosities in the world, Berwick’s affections have been drawn to the execrable National Health Service, at which he shamelessly, and publicly, pitches woo.

You are looking into your future, my fellow Americans. It does not have to turn out this way. It is not inevitable, however, that it won’t turn out this way, so vote this fall like your life depended on it (which may very well be the case).

Update: CK in the comments raises an intriguing issue: What is it about Obama? Is it incompetence or evil? Or (which would be my point), is the incompetence impeding the full flowering of evil? Steven Den Beste touched on the matter the other day, providing what he referred to as the "sane" and the "paranoid" answers to the "why" of Obama's policy choices (I don't know whether the labeling - sane vs. paranoid - actually represents his view, or whether he was merely being provocative; frankly, in at least some of the instances he mentions, I'm not sure there's a whole lot of difference. Remember the adage: just because you're paranoid doesn't mean everybody's not out to get you).

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

"High Tea" Party?

What ho!

Marc Thiessen reports that the new Tory government in England is adopting some of the key policies advocated by American Tea Partiers: slashes in government spending, wage freezes for government workers, and significant cuts in welfare spending.

C'mon, America! If the Brits can do it, we sure can!

Paco’s Diary

Last week, one of my agency’s highly-placed executive officers – an Obama appointee – wanted to schedule a meeting to discuss a particular issue (the issue in question isn’t really important to the story, except insofar as it was something very basic of which she was still in ignorance after being here for more than a year). She scheduled a meeting, and then rescheduled it three more times over two days. When we finally nailed down a time, I trooped up to her office with a couple of other interested parties. We all sat down, and I had not completed my first sentence when she abruptly turned to her flunkey and asked, “Wait. Isn’t the President giving his speech now?” The flunkey informed her that he was. She then turned to us as she rose from her chair and said, “Sorry to have to cut you off, but I really should watch this on TV. I’ll call you later to reschedule.” At least I wasn’t preempted by an old rerun of Law and Order.

* * * *

For most of the day, sitting in my office catty-cornered from the White House, I have been distracted by loud and emotional speeches emanating from Lafayette Park. Investigation revealed that the commotion was due to a large group of Orthodox Jews protesting against Israel, of all things. I was vaguely aware that certain Orthodox groups opposed Zionism, but had to look into the matter a little further to ascertain why. Apparently, some (surely not all?) Orthodox Jews disavow Zionism, at least as manifested in the idea of the modern Israeli state, on theological grounds; they believe that Zionism is forcing God’s hand or something. Informed readers please feel free to enlighten me further on this matter. As for my own beliefs, I continue to be a Catholic Zionist, steadfast in my support of Israel and committed to the idea that America and Israel should maintain a strong alliance. If this means a new U.S. president in 2012…well, I, for one, am certainly willing to make the “sacrifice”.

* * * *

Today’s Chuck Norris fact: Chuck Norris enjoys a good practical joke. His favorite is where he removes your lower intestine and makes a balloon animal out of it.

Maybe this is one of those things it would have been better not to know

Jim Fallon is a neuroscientist who has studied the brains of psychopaths for 20 years. His mother revealed to him that he had some pretty kooky relatives, himself, including a blood-tie to suspected axe-murderess, Lizzie Borden. So, Dr. Fallon began doing scans of his family’s brains, including his own. Whoops! (Parts 2 and 3 here and here).

Monday, July 5, 2010

What this country needs is another Calvin Coolidge

Gregory Kane has a few examples of the wit and wisdom of Silent Cal.

Whither the NRA?

The NRA is apparently flirting with the idea of endorsing Harry Reid.

Yes, I understand that there's some "inside baseball" going on. The theory is that if the Democrats retain control of the Senate, it would be better to have Reid in charge than Chuck Schumer.

But is Reid really a big Second Amendment supporter? 84 rules has a rundown on Reid's votes over the years on gun control legislation. You make the call.

Richard McEnroe in the comments: "Hard enough to keep RINO's in your sights without using them as your gunbearers."

Paco feeling left out

Dan Riehl links to Lisa Grass' list of manly blogs.

Through some horrible error, I see that Paco Enterprises isn't included. C'mon, Lisa. How can you forget...Acapulco?

One of these days, Osama - Pow! - Straight to the moon!

In one of the more bizarre policy initiatives of an increasingly bizarre administration, President Obama's NASA administrator, Charles Bolden, indicated that one of his principal objectives is to "reach out to Muslims":
NASA administrator Charles Bolden says President Obama has ordered him to pursue three new objectives: to “re-inspire children” to study science and math, to “expand our international relationships,” and to “reach out to the Muslim world.” Of those three goals, Bolden said in a recent interview with al-Jazeera, the mission to reach out to Muslims is “perhaps foremost,” because it will help Islamic nations “feel good” about their scientific accomplishments [emphasis mine].
Now, unless this is part of a devious, super-secret plan to lure Muslim terrorists onto a rocket for a one-way trip to the moon (Operation Ralph Kramden?), it's difficult to see the sense of the proposal. In the first place, Muslim countries will most likely view this outreach as another of the administration's acts of cringing ingratiation that so thoroughly smack of weakness. Secondly, it seems like a move of unwitting condescension, in which the U.S. pats the Muslims on the head and tells them what splendid fellows they are for having had ancestors who made important contributions to math and science, oh, some four or five hundred years ago.

This is an administration that manages to get everything wrong, from the big policies to the small gestures. Obama is like, I dunno, Hulk-Carter, smashing our society with brute, super-strong incompetence. Hurry 2012!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Two from down under

First, that inimitable stylist, Boy on a Bike, remarks on the collective sigh of relief that is going around the ministries as a result of Kevin Rudd not having been given a cabinet post (not yet, anyway).

On an ominous note, Weasel Zippers has the goods on Hizb ut-Tahrir leader Burhan Hanif, who has advised Australian Muslims to eschew democracy.

Just the facts, ma'am

Jeffrey Lord, in responding to an e-mail from a miffed Portland Tribune editor, lays out, in detail, the information in the police report filed in Portland, Oregon, in connection with the charges made by a masseuse against Al Gore. The thing that really gave me a chuckle is this bit listed under "Person of Interest":
"Mr. STONE"
Aka: GORE, AL
Former Vice President of United States of America
The only thing it needed to make it absolutely perfect was the notation, "Winner, Nobel Peace Prize".

Theodore Dalrymple is such a fine writer...

...that he can even make soccer sound interesting.

I tend to endorse his opinion of the game:
On the subject of football, I am a snob. I do not detest the game as such, for I accept that it can be played with skill and achieve a kind of beauty, but rather the excessive importance attached to it by millions and hundreds of millions of my fellow beings. Try as I might to expunge the thought from my mind that this enthusiasm is a manifestation of human stupidity, I cannot.

Think border security is a non-issue?

Then check out this story at the Sipsey Street Irregulars about what is, in fact, a civil war going on in Mexico (H/T: ricketyclick).

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Happy 4th of July!



In keeping with the tradition of Paco Enterprises - to the extent that two years counts as a tradition - I am linking to the text of the Declaration of Independence, a document that we should all take the time to re-familiarize ourselves with, particularly during times such as these when it is folly to take our hard-won liberty for granted.

In my entire 55 years, I have not seen an administration, aided and abetted by its allies in the Senate and in Congress, and in state and local governments around the country, striking out with such arrogant self-assurance against the principles upon which our nation was founded. Over the last decade, each election seems to be more important than the one that preceded it, and the interim elections this year will likely indicate whether or not we have reached a tipping point in our advance toward a dreary, soul-destroying statism, presided over and implemented by hell-bent fools.

2010. Roll-back.

Update: Andrew Breitbart marks the 4th by unveiling another blog in his "Big" series: Big Peace. Check it out!

Update II: American Power has some great photos of the Tea Party protest Saturday in San Juan Capistrano.

Update III: Bob Belvedere mixes patriotism with Rule 5 action to create a potent combination.

Update IV: Ziva Sahl over at Babalu reflects on a very different society some 90 miles from Florida, and places the concept of being a so-called "hardliner" in the context of the ideals that gave rise to our own revolution.

Update V: Be careful with the pyrotechnics!

demotivational posters - FIREWORKS
see more

Sunday Funny

C'mon, cat lovers, you know it's true!

The Great Reunion

The biggest-ever reunion of Civil War veterans occurred in 1913, on the 50th anniversary of the Battle Of Gettysburg. Check out this site, especially for the slide show (that first picture of two old enemies siting on a bench, shaking hands has always been a favorite of mine). Here is some more history of the reunion.

Warning to Australian Internet Users!

From friend and commenter Old Sailor Man comes this special alert:

Attention all Aussies...INTERNET WARNING!!!
If you get an e-mail titled:-
NUDE PHOTO OF OUR NEW PRIME MINISTER

Don't open it

It encloses a nude photo of our new PM

Assortment

"2010 is America's Thermopylae" (H/T: Babalu).

Hey, Obama's not one of us! No, really! Bluegrass Pundit reports that the Socialist Party refuses to claim Barry as one of their own (they're probably upset that he has been prematurely outed).

"Elena Kagan...is to the SCOTUS what BHO is to the Presidency." So saith Smitty, spot on, as usual.

The ever-vigilant Eye of Polyphemus has a link to P.J. O'Rourke, who says that, with General McChrystal, the hippies finally scored.

Dan Collins uncovers a union tax scam.

Richard McEnroe whacks Nancy Pelosi with a clue-by-four.

The Blogprof does the same to Rep. John Dingell.

Kim Jong Il must have the world's biggest business card.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Rule 5 Saturday

The Dandridge sisters show how yodeling’s done up in Harlem.

Sadly, stupidity does not disqualify one from holding high public office

Hardly an original observation. But it seems that, these days, far from being an obstacle, obtuseness is not only not a disqualification, but a positive asset.

House Squeaker Nancy Pelosi, for example, seems to think that unemployment checks create jobs (Stacy McCain has the video).

Well, yeah, maybe for outfits like this, but not in the economy as a whole.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Come to think of it, how much do we really know about Mark Steyn?

Hugh Hewitt may be on to something.

Hizzoner gives the raspberry to the Supreme Court

Mayor Daley of Chicago really doesn't like the Supreme court decision striking down his gun control laws:
After spending two years fighting a legal battle that was clearly futile from the start, he didn't take the defeat graciously. He resentfully acknowledged his obligation to abide by the Second Amendment while pledging new shackles for those unwilling to depend entirely on 911 for home security.

The mayor is expected to demand registration of all handguns, mandatory training for gun owners and a limit of one handgun per person. This last novel idea comes from Corporation Counsel Mara Georges, who according to the Associated Press "says the court ruled people can have a gun for protection, but didn't say they're allowed more than one."
I suppose Daley and the other Democratic machine-politicians who run Chicago aren't going to be happy until the place looks like Detroit.


"Youse lawr-abidin' citizens don't need no guns; just make like dis and say 'boom!'"