"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Friday, October 31, 2014

Top 10 Liberal Myths

From a terrific piece by Kate Bachelder in the Wall Street Journal entitled "The Top 10 Liberal Superstitions":
1. Spending more money improves education. 
The U.S. spent $12,608 per student in 2010—more than double the figure, in inflation-adjusted dollars, spent in 1970—and spending on public elementary and secondary schools has surpassed $600 billion. How’s that working out? Adjusted state SAT scores have declined on average 3% since the 1970s, as the Cato Institute’s Andrew Coulson found in a March report.  
No better news in the international rankings: The Program for International Student Assessment reports that in 2012 American 15-year-olds placed in the middle of the pack, alongside peers from Slovakia—which shells out half as much money as the U.S. per student.  
Someone might mention this to North Carolina Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, who is knocking State House Speaker Thom Tillis for cutting $500 million from schools. Per-pupil K-12 spending has increased every year since Mr. Tillis became speaker in 2011, and most of what Ms. Hagan is selling as “cuts” came from community colleges and universities, not the local middle school. Mr. Coulson’s Cato study notes that North Carolina has about doubled per-pupil education spending since 1972, which has done precisely nothing for the state’s adjusted SAT scores.

In case you were wondering, the rest of the top 10 liberal superstitions are:

2. Government spending stimulates the economy.
3. Republican candidates always have a big spending advantage over Democrats. 
4. Raising the minimum wage helps the poor. 
5. Global warming is causing increasingly violent weather.
6. Genetically modified food is dangerous.        
7. Voter ID laws suppress minority turnout. 
8. ObamaCare is gaining popularity.
9. The Keystone XL pipeline would increase oil spills.
10. Women are paid 77 cents on the dollar compared with men.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Ace is Killing Mary Burke on Twitter

Ace of the Ace of Spades HQ blog is hilariously spoofing Mary Burke and her "I wasn't fired from my family's bicycle business" position on Twitter:

Unbelievable - Project Veritas' Expose of Voter Fraud by Democrats in North Carolina

Now, maybe James O'Keefe's folks came across some Democratic Party representatives who thought twice about recommending to the undercover "illegal" what they had to know would be felonious non-citizen voting.   Maybe O'Keefe left those parts out.   But this is pretty damning stuff... Democrat after Democrat saying "no problem" when an illegal alien with a Spanish accent tells them she wants to vote.

Remember this next time you hear Democrats talk about how Republicans are trying to "disenfranchise" someone by demanding photo IDs for voting.   The reality is... every time an illegal alien votes, he cancels out the vote of an American citizen, effecitvely disenfranchising them.   In fact, I would argue that not having stringent photo ID (including identifying whether the voter is an American citizen) invariably dilutes the vote of citizens and is itself unconstitutional.  

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Very Good News About the Walker-Burke Race

From the Marquette poll:

Final pre-election Marquette Law School Poll finds Walker leading Burke in Wisconsin governor’s race

MILWAUKEE – A new Marquette Law School Poll finds Republican Gov. Scott Walker leading Democratic challenger Mary Burke 50 percent to 43 percent among likely voters in the Wisconsin governor’s race. Another 3 percent say that they are undecided or that they do not know whom they will support, while 1 percent say that they will vote for someone else. Likely voters are those who say that they are certain to vote in the November election.
Among registered voters in the poll, Walker receives 46 percent and Burke 45 percent, with 4 percent undecided and 1 percent saying that they will vote for someone else.
The poll interviewed 1,409 registered voters, including 1,164 likely voters, by landline and cell phone Oct. 23-26. For the full sample of 1,409 registered voters, the margin of error is +/- 2.7 percentage points. The margin of error for the sample of 1,164 likely voters is +/- 3.0 percentage points. This is the final Marquette Law School Poll before the Nov. 4 election.
The previous Marquette Law School Poll, conducted Oct. 9-12, found the race tied among likely voters, with the candidates holding 47 percent each, while 48 percent of registered voters supported Walker to Burke’s 45 percent support.


My thought... this has probably been the real race all along.   Burke is a nobody and a bad candidate... a trust fund kid with no accomplishments, no husband, no children.   Those last two things might make me sound mean, but it's simply reality... people like Burke who don't have children to me don't have skin in the game.   And they lack the life experience that parents have.   I think most people recognize that, and that the race has always been Walker's.   The MU poll is probably just catching up late to save its credibility... probably by adjusting how it screens for likely voters.   That's a very old gambit of pollsters.

The Lights Are Out Now

main image

They were on Tuesday night for Oscar Taveras' funeral.   I still can't talk about this and don't want to think about it.   I was trying to remember a similar situation in sports... maybe Len Bias in 1986?   I don't know.   But that wasn't one of my Cardinals.   Just a terrible, terrible thing.

Girl of the Day - Nazanin Boniadi

Iranian-born Nazanin Boniadi plays an analyst turned spy on Showtime's Homeland series.   On the show they appear to dowdy her up a little.   Here's what she looks like in real life:


Which leads me to the main problem with Homeland this year (among the myriad plot holes that the show has had every year)... the plot so far revolves around a young Pakistani med student who is related to a famous terrorist, and Carrie Matheson's attempt to turn him into a CIA assset by seducing him.   First she tries using Fara (the Nazanin Boniadi character), but he rejects her.   So Carrie has to do the seduction herself, ending up bedding the 21 year-old boy-man.   But, good gracious... what man in his right mind would reject this girl?   And certainly not for the schizo, 35 year-old spymaster who's just back from having a baby by a C-section (ickily noted during the show's love scene).  

Am I the only one who notices this?

"Worse than anything Nixon ever did."

Hard to even know what to say about this story about former CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson, and what happened to her when she was breaking the Benhazi cover-up story:

Next big moment: Attkisson gets her computer checked out by someone identified as “Number One,” who’s described as a “confidential source inside the government.” A climactic meeting takes place at a McDonald’s outlet at which Attkisson and “Number One” “look around” for possibly suspicious things. Finding nothing, they talk. “First just let me say again I’m shocked. Flabbergasted. All of us are. This is outrageous. Worse than anything Nixon ever did. I wouldn’t have believed something like this could happen in the United States of America.” That’s all coming from “Number One.” 
The breaches on Attkisson’s computer, says this source, are coming from a “sophisticated entity that used commercial, nonattributable spyware that’s proprietary to a government agency: either the CIA, FBI, the Defense Intelligence Agency, or the National Security Agency (NSA).” Attkisson learns from “Number One” that one intrusion was launched from the WiFi at a Ritz Carlton Hotel and the “intruders discovered my Skype account handle, stole the password, activated the audio, and made heavy use of it, presumably as a listening tool.” 
To round out the revelations of “Number One,” he informs Attkisson that he’d found three classified documents deep inside her operating system, such that she’d never know they were even there. “Why? To frame me?” Attkisson asks in the book. 
So CBS News hires an independent computer analyst whom Attkisson identifies as “Jerry Patel,” also a pseudonym. He finds a massive amount of suspicious activity in the computer, including the removal of all kinds of log messages. The author describes the scene as “Patel” does his work: “Now he’s breathing heavily. It alarms me because it alarms him and he’s not easily alarmed. His voice becomes more formal and he launches into what sounds like a speech for posterity. ‘In my professional opinion, someone has accessed this box … I see evidence that shows a deliberate and skilled attempt to clean the log files of activity.’” Intrusions of this caliber, concludes “Patel,” are “far beyond the the abilities of even the best nongovernment hackers.”

Too easy:   if this were a Republican administration, we'd already have impeachment articles drawn up.

Closer to the truth:  we are in the first moments of what will be a long war between citizens and the soft totalitarianism of the vast federal bureaucracy.  

Two Stories About Voting That Are Really the Same Story

Wisconsin, my home state, passed a voter ID bill years ago, but it has never been implemented due to legal challenges from Democratic Party groups.   They say it disenfranchises the poor citizen who may not have a photo ID.   Reading between the lines, what they mean is that it disenfranchises the poor black citizen and that Republican efforts to pass and enforce voter ID laws are racist attempts to "suppress" the black vote, which, of course, votes predominantly for Democrats.   Whether that is so (the huge black turnouts in 2008 and 2012 suggest that African-Americans don't have trouble getting to the polls), and whether it actually shows the racism of liberals (are black voters really too stupid to obtain photo IDs... I doubt it)... those are topics for another day.

But here are two stories that show that the issue of photo IDs isn't that having them disenfranchises American citizens, but that not having them enfranchises non-citizens.   Here's the first story, about a study of voting patterns in the past few elections:
But persuasive evidence that vote fraud is both real and consequential has appeared. A new academic paper published in the journal Electoral Studies provides evidence of voting by non-citizens that directly contradicts the Democrats’ “nothing to see here” mantra. Under the neutral headline “Do Non-Citizens Vote in U.S. Elections?” three professors from Virginia universities answer in the affirmative. Using an enormous database of voters nationwide (32,800 from 2008, and 55,400 in 2012), the authors find that about one-quarter of the non-citizens who participated in the survey were registered to vote. 
Studying survey responses, the authors judge that non-citizen voters tend to favor Democratic candidates by large margins. 
In many states, their participation wouldn’t be large enough to make a difference, but in North Carolina in 2008, the authors calculate, non-citizens may well have tipped the state into Obama’s column. “So what?” you may say. Even if John McCain had won that state, it wouldn’t have changed the outcome of the national election. True, but remember the presidential race in 2000? Remember “hanging chad” Florida? 
Several House seats, and one very significant Senate seat, were probably won by Democrats on the strength of illegal votes. In 2008, the authors note, Senator Al Franken won by just 312 votes in Minnesota. That seat was the sixtieth vote to give Democrats a filibuster-proof supermajority to pass major legislation such as Obamacare. “[Voting] participation by just 0.65 percent of non-citizens in Minnesota is sufficient to account for the entirety of Franken’s margin,” the authors write. “Our best guess is that nearly ten times as many voted.”
Now, if that's not chilling enough, here's today's story about how La Raza, the Hispanic immigration pro-amnesty group, is promoting a list of states where there are no requirements for photo ID to vote:
The pro-amnesty Hispanic activist organization the National Council of La Raza helpfully promoted a Washington Post article explaining which states people can vote in without having to use a photo ID. 
“Voter ID laws are at-issue across the country, with newly Republican-controlled legislatures having passed them in numerous states after the 2010 election,” explained The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake. “Most states still request some form of ID, but don’t require it. Another 20 states don’t require identification. In case you’re wondering where your state is at in all of this, a helpful (sic) graphic from the Post’s graphics team.” 
So who ended up using the Post’s helpful graphic? The country’s foremost pro-amnesty Hispanic immigrant organization.


This is why Republicans have to win outside the margin of cheating.   Because if the Democrats can steal a close election, they will steal a close election, with non-registered voters, felon voters, and non-citizen voters casting ballots for liberal Democratic candidates who, not incidentally, plan to enact more and more wealth transfer programs and less and less restrictions on immigration and, ultimately, amnesty for illegal immigrants.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

If You've Lost Jimmy Carter...

Oh, dear.

Carter said it was hard to figure out exactly what President Obama’s policy is in the Middle East. 
“It changes from time to time,” Carter said. “I noticed that two of his secretaries of defense, after they got out of office, were very critical of the lack of positive action on the part of the president.”

If Jimmy Carter thinks you are weak and vacillating in your foreign policy, maybe you should get out of the President business.  

Read more here: http://www.ledger-enquirer.com/2014/10/08/3344313_jimmy-carter-unhappy-with-obamas.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

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