July 21, 2011

Quick Takes, July 21, 2011

ITEM: Iran Has Already Tested Long Range, Nuclear-Capable Missiles? Oh goody. Go here for the story. Unfortunately, it’s true, and it’s likely that Iran is closer to nuclear capability than our emasculated, politicized intelligence apparatus imagines. They will use nucs against Israel and us when they have them, and Mr. Obama is busy threatening to take away our elder’s social security checks and is focused like a laser on raising taxes. We live in a very dangerous world, a world made more dangerous by the incompetence of our own president who ignores those who represent the most credible threat to our nation.

ITEM: Adventures In Time Travel: Go here for a fascinating but brief story about Cornell scientists who have actually altered time. It was for only 110 nanoseconds, but it's real. The line between reality and science fiction becomes more blurred all the time.

ITEM: Full Faith and Credit: Go here for a brief article by Mark Steyn. An excerpt:

"We are sending a consistent message to the world that the political structures of the United States do not allow for meaningful course correction. That does far more damage to the “full faith and credit” of America than failing to hike the debt ceiling."

Read the entire article to get the full context. It's now clearer than ever that our representatives in DC really do think we're stupid.

ITEM: Miss Me Yet? Joy Nordlinger has a nice essay about Nobels awarded as political weapons (here). He notes, in part:

"These days, you hardly ever hear a good word about Bush 43. The Left has always hated him, of course, and the Right habitually snorts at him. I have a feeling that Bush’s time will come. And that the haters and the snorters will look pretty small."

With Barack Obama in the White House, they already do Mr. Nordlinger, they already do.

ITEM: Perry Is In? It appears, according to Hot Air (go here), that he may enter the Presidential race. We have commented in past QTs about the very obvious shortcomings of Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich. In fact, it will be worth your time to visit an interesting article by Clayton Cramer (here) on why Mr. Romney will almost certainly be a losing nominee. As Mr. Perry is my Governor, a few thoughts: (1) I'm always a little worried about anyone who, if they fall down, is at risk of shattering their hair. (2) He's likely to be the most genuinely conservative (electable) candidate Republicans will have this year. (3) He has a real record of solid governance and economic accomplishment. (4) He's nothing at all like Barack Obama. (5) He actually shot an attacking coyote with a concealed handgun while out running (name any other politician who has actually carried and fired a gun so effectively, and even though Dick Cheney did shoot a lawyer, that doesn't count). (6) This year, all of that is pretty darned important.

ITEM: I Was Wrong. A refreshing thing to hear and a character revealing and building thing to say, particularly when you're Cynthia Tucker, a columnist with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a black columnist who previously editorialized in favor of racial jerrymandering to further black causes, a liberal columnist. Go here to read her essay embracing democracy. Congratulations to Ms. Tucker, not for being "white," and not for embracing conservative ideals, but democratic ideals that will help Blacks, not consign them to being eternally adolescent wards of the Democrat Party.

ITEM: Well, I Can't Think Of A Better Use For Taxpayer Money! Let's say you're a federal National Institutes of Health bureaucrat with just loads of grant money to hand out for worthy projects (Deficit? We don' got no stinkin' deficit!). You find an intriguing grant proposal, one for research, which if successful, will answer one of mankind's most vexing and pressing public health questions, so of course you funnel $889,769 (in 2006) into the research. What was the research? What effect a gay man's penis size has on his sex life and general well-being. I'm not kidding. Go here for the story. It ought to get a rise out of you. I am soooo ashamed of myself...

ITEM: A Child Molester Facing Years in Jail Walks Into A Bar And Says…There is actually no punch line to this one, except that the child molester gets to view the video he made of his victim as part of his defense. This is an issue outraging many in the Pacific Northwest. Go here to PACNW Righty for the story and comment. If we want the presumption of innocence for ourselves…

ITEM: The Government Love You So Much Your Children Are Ours! Go here to Fox News for an interesting discussion about the proposal in the July American Medical Association Journal by Dr. David Ludwig advocating that obese children be taken from their parents and forced to meet government weight standards. Hey, if they can tell you which light bulbs to buy and force you to buy the insurance they approve, why not? It’s for the good of the children!

ITEM: Everything Old Is New Again! It has often bandied about that Barack Obama is, if anything, even worse than Jimmy Carter, whose photograph you will find if you look in the dictionary under "truly wretched and incompetent president." On the anniversary of Mr. Carter's famous and fatuous "malaise" speech (I actually heard it when he gave it! I'm still recovering; I have these nightmares…) The bright and beautiful Laura Ingraham put together a montage of Mr. Carter's comments interspersed with Mr. Obama's. Talk about separated at birth! Actually, it's rather scary. Mr. Carter's photo in the dictionary is not destined for a long life, I'm afraid. Go here to Michelle Malkin for the audio.

ITEM: Goods Versus Rights: Go here to the Weekly Standard for an intriguing essay by Noemie Emery about the difference between calling having free health care a right, and having the money to pay for that good (as in a consumer good). Her conclusion? The welfare state as we have known it is quite dead. Some people are just refusing to view the body. Good stuff.

ITEM: Hey, Have You Noticed…? Department: Hey have you noticed how much gasoline prices have come down since Mr. Obama saved us all by releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve? Yeah. Me neither. Aren't you glad he had the brilliance and foresight to do that? Yeah. Me neither. Discuss.

ITEM: Louis Renault Award of the Week, Lamestream Media Edition: According to Presidential mouthpiece Jay Carney, the media is being excluded from debt-ceiling meeting because they dared to ask questions of President Obama. Apparently The One was annoyed with their manner of asking questions. Go here for the story. I’m shocked, shocked! Actually, you have to wonder if the mental midgets of the press will ever awaken to the reality that Barack Obama considers them, at best, to be useful idiots. Dear Press: Barack Obama is not America’s friend, and he is certainly not your friend.

ITEM: Don’t Tax You, Don’t Tax Me; Tax That Cat Behind The Tree! That’s the old saying, isn’t it? Well, it certainly is in San Diego which is now proposing a cat “registration” fee, so of course, its not really a tax, except you have to pay it to the government. How would you enforce that sort of thing? Kitty SWAT teams making no-knock raids and shooting citizens whose cats stared menacingly at them? As goes California, so goes the nation? Not unless we all want to descend into economic and moral oblivion. Go here to see our feline future.

ITEM: It’s Official: When his lips are moving, he really is lying. At his call-their-bluff, takin’-it-to-the-people speech on July 15, Mr. Obama said that 80% of the American people are “sold” on his “balanced” approach. That’s right: 80% of the public not only wants higher taxes, they’re virtually begging for them. Go here for the story and video. Funny, I don’t recall getting a polling call on that topic…

ITEM: The Wages of Rhetoric: In the Age of Obama, talk has never been cheaper. Mr. Obama is infamous for saying that he supports X or Y and then either doing nothing at all to support X or Y or doing everything possible to destroy X or Y. Well, now Mr. Obama is absolutely ready to make big cuts in entitlements. Well, except ObamaCare, the biggest entitlement of all time, of course. Go here for an explication of that, and other Obama lunacies by the estimable Charles Krauthammer.

ITEM: I Absolutely Did Not Say That I Did The Auto Company Bailout For The Unions—except maybe I did, but I didn’t really mean it, and it was a sort of joke, if I said it, which I’m not sure I didn’t, and anyway, this is all a distraction. Go here for the story. Last week in QTs we wrote of Ron Bloom, the White House auto company bailout honcho who once said that he did the auto bailouts for the unions, then vehemently denied it in testimony before Congress. Now it seems he’s backpedaling. I’m shocked, shocked! Where’s Louis Renault when you need him?

ITEM: We’re AAA! Maybe not so much. America stands on the precipice of losing its AAA bond rating, which would make it much more expensive for the nation to borrow money and would almost certainly send consumer and bank interest rates into the skyrocketing energy territory so beloved of Mr. Obama and his Socialistic Energy Secretary Chu. Go here for the Wall Street Journal story on exactly why we could lose the favorable rating we’ve enjoyed since 1917. Nobody looks good, but Obama and the Democrats are leading the political lemmings right off the fiscal cliff, band playing and flags flying.

ITEM: But Smart Diplomacy Is So, So…Smart! When your foreign policy consists of billions of cubic feet of noxious rhetoric, serial insults of your allies and base spaniel fawning appeasement of your most deadly and determined enemies, it’s rather hard to apply the adjective “smart” to anything you’ve done. Go here for a brief New Republic piece about the wages of Mr. Obama’s foreign policy fecklessness. We will be lucky to survive him.

ITEM: Blast From The Not So Distant Past: Go here for a great story—in the NYT of all places—from Gretchen Morgenson about GM's blatant public lie about paying off its government loans. Some will remember that it turns out they took money from one government account and used that to pay off the loan about which they crowed. Did you know, by the way, that we still own $2.1 billion of preferred G.M. stock and 61% of its common equity? By all means, read the whole thing.

ITEM: Feel Good Story Of The Week. Go here for the Fox News video of an Iraq War veteran who caught a burglar in his home and held him at gunpoint for police. If you ever wanted to find a poster person for responsible, calm use of firearms by a citizen, this is the guy. Special Bonus: He makes the point that his home state, Illinois, won't allow citizens to protect themselves, but Indiana, where he now lives, does.

ITEM: Thank God For the Police In Midway, GA. Go here for another Fox News video about three young girls in Midway, GA who opened a front yard lemonade stand and were shut down by the police for not having a business license.

Note to The Police in Midway, GA (and elsewhere): You have discretion. Even though you were legitimately enforcing the law, it's hard to imagine anything that would make you look more like dim-witted bullies than symbolically beating up on a few little girls selling lemonade in their front yard. Kicking puppies on the front steps of a church, maybe, but this one should be a no brainer. Way to shoot yourselves in the foot guys!

ITEM: What The Hell Is He Talking About? Department: In his Saturday radio speech, Mr. Obama spoke, as he so often does, about the rich "paying their fair share." Let's see if I have this straight: Nearly 50% of Americans pay no income tax at all, and the top 5% of wage earners pay nearly 60% of all income taxes. Is that right? Why yes, it is. So from whom, exactly, is Mr. Obama going to get an additional "fair share," and at what rate will they have to be taxed? Would 500% do it? Isn't it true that even if we taxed every millionaire and billionaire in the US at 100%, the revenues generated wouldn't come close to covering even one year of the national debt at Obama levels of increase? Why yes, it is. So what the hell is he talking about? Discuss.

ITEM: Run For Your Life! It's Global Warming! Well, not for the last 15 years anyway. Remember one of the Climategate E-mails wherein the deceptive scientists involved were quite annoyed that they had no explanation at all for why there had been no increase in warming in the last 15 years? Remember the hilarity that ensued when they said that this lack of an explanation put at risk the entire AGW racket? Ha ha ha! I certainly do. Go here for the story and re-live the humor.

ITEM: How To Sell Through Sex: Go here to the Daily Mail (love those Brits!) for a fascinating article on how men and women see sexy ads differently. I know you're not surprised that they do see things differently (if you are, we need to have a chat after class; I'm worried about your continuing survival), but you'll be surprised about the specifics. Neat article; neat photographs, neat graphics. Who said all they care about over there are fish and chips?

ITEM: Helping the Troops: Go here for an interesting NIMH video about how to be helpful to our returning combat veterans. It's about five minutes of your time that may make a difference for one of our truly best and brightest (they're not in DC—unless they're in uniform, that is).

ITEM: It'll Replace The Gasoline Engine! Is it the Chevy Volt? The Nissan Leaf? Nah. As a matter of fact, there is no technology that is even close to being as efficient, convenient and affordable as the internal combustion engine. However, one possibility is using a flywheel in a sort of gas/flywheel hybrid. It has some promise, but as with electric cars, there is no free lunch. Read this article to see what I mean. Don't sell your stock in Exxon-Mobile just yet.

ITEM: Arguing For Death Panels: Remember when Sarah Palin talked about government death panels under ObamaCare and was roundly criticized—until it was passed so that Nancy Pelosi could find out what was in it, and there is a death panel under ObamaCare? Remember the apologies Sarah Palin received? Me neither. Remember New York Times token conservative David Brooks? You know, the guy who thought that Barack Obama would be a magnificent president because his pants had spiffy creases? I'm not making that up. Well, Mr. Brooks has an essay in the Times basically arguing that when you get old and sick, why, life just isn't worth living, so you should give the right to kill you to government so that you aren't burdened with your life, because rationing is good because health care is expensive and old people are inconvenient and icky and all. The invaluable Jennifer Rubin (here) opens a can of pants crease remover on Brooks. There is a link to Brooks' article in hers. Should a guy who thinks he can read presidential success in pants creases even be allowed to write in public?

ITEM: Reckless Endangerment: That's the name of a new book by Gretchen Morgenson and Joshua Rosner on why we're in such a financial mess. Go here for a solid article by Rex Murphy of Canada's National Post, which profiles the book and names names. Barney Frank, by the way, is a primary villain. I know: You're shocked, shocked? Where's Louis Renault when you really need him?

ITEM: Here's How You Do It. Any Questions? Go here to Power Line for a great, brief video of Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) on Face the Nation. The execrable Robert Schieffer tries to open a can of Democrat talking points on Rubio, who deftly replies with logic and rational thought. Schieffer, of course, has no idea how to respond. I know what you're thinking: Leftist partisanship? Surely not on CBS, the home of Rathergate! Yes, leftist partisanship, and quit calling me Shirley.

ITEM: Louis Renault Award, Global Warming Division: So, Global Warming isn't really science? I'm shocked, shocked! Yeah. Right. Go here for a fascinating explanation of precisely why it fails to be—you know—science and is instead a sort of carnival barker's pseudo-religious something or other. The article contains real science stuff such as you shouldn't ignore contrary data and projections from unverified sources, and untested computer models aren't actual knowledge. I know: crazed right wing thinking, right? Gad, I hope so. It begins with "Philosophical Basis for Challenging the IPCC."

ITEM: Chevy Volt? Forget That: Gimme A Flying Car! Go here for a fascinating story about an actual, practical flying car that may be driving—and flying above—American highways within a year. This is the real thing, gentle readers. Major league cool, but I wouldn't put the family car up for sale just yet.

ITEM: Louis Renault Award Of The Day, MSNBC Division: Rachel Maddow, misleading the public? I'm shocked, shocked! Yeah, not so much. Go here to discover how Ms. Maddow recently misrepresented the Texas Voter ID law while combining the self-evident (to her) evil of actually forcing people who want to vote to identify themselves with the evil of people who hold concealed carry licenses. Is there no evil to which these Republicans will not stoop? Not in Maddow World. Good thing it doesn't actually exist.

ITEM: The Economy: Democrats and Strippers Hardest Hit! Go here for a fascinating interview by Susannah Breslin about the business of stripping and the economy. Did you know that 9/11 hit the stripping industry very hard? The story has links to several other worthwhile Breslin articles.

ITEM: So The Vacation Cottage is up to $50,000 Per Week? Book That Sucker! And you too could say that if you were Barack Obama, who, according to Hot Air (here) ABC, and other news outlets, will be vacationing at pricey Blue Heron Cottage on Martha's Vinyard this coming week. A guy deserves a bit of vacation now and then, but gad, talk about awful timing and choices! I seem to recall a past president who gave up golf because it might look frivolous when the nation was at war, and whose vacations consisted of a bit of infrequent time on his ranch in the international garden spot of Crawford, TX. Can't quite seem to recall his name, but I know he gets blamed for everything…

ITEM: It's The Cops! And this time, they're behaving like pros. What is all the more remarkable is that a citizen openly carrying a gun is involved. I know that some people might get the impression that we here at CY are anti-police. The truth is, we're anti incompetent and abusive police, which are—thank goodness--a small percentage of all officers. Go here to see a video of one of the real good guys.

ITEM: Paco To The Rescue! Go here for a great video about Paco the Chihuahua who chased off two armed robbers, preventing them from taking more than a small amount of cash from his owner. If Paco can do it, how can anyone claim with a straight face that we should submit to criminals and give them what they want?

And with that great little story, I must thank you for stopping by, say a fond farewell and invite you, once again, to return next Thursday for another edition of Quick Takes! Woof! Get 'em Paco! Aiieeeee!

Posted by MikeM at July 21, 2011 12:16 AM

Sorry, my friend, but in fact, GWB was dead-on in foreign policy (with a few small reservations) and absolutely wrong on damn near everything domestic.

He will have legitimately earned a Peace Prize, should that ever occur. Not so much for Economics.

Posted by: dad29 at July 21, 2011 08:53 AM

Dear dad29:

Thanks for taking the time to read and comment! I think GWB did a bit better than that domestically, but I appreciate him--particularly these days--for one thing above all: there is no doubt he loved his country and tried to do what was right for it, however misguided he might have been in some particulars. It's tragic indeed that we can't say that about the current President.

Posted by: Mike Mc at July 21, 2011 10:44 AM

Once again great moments in weekly news with "Quick Takes"! What a joy it is to read so many stories, both serious and funny. A truly lovely way to start OR end the day! My husband and I are spreading the news about CY and Quick Takes. Thank you!

Posted by: carol at July 21, 2011 11:10 AM

I agree with carol. A truly lovely way to start OR end the day!

Posted by: donne at July 21, 2011 12:26 PM