Saturday, July 4, 2015

Gov. Tom Wolf wins the buffoon of the day award

Yesterday Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed a bill that would have privatized the sale of wine and liquor while liberalizing the rules for selling beer in the Keystone State. Wolf counterintutively argues that replacing the state monopoly with private businesses would be bad for consumers. "During consideration of this legislation," he says, "it became abundantly clear that this plan would result in higher prices for consumers." He also worries that letting private businesses sell beer and wine would result in "less selection for consumers."...
Why limit things to wine and liquor stores? If one follows this buffoons' reasoning to its logical conclusion Pennsylvannia should take over all retailers...

For more go here

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Is Obama sexist or a liar?


Mark Perry skewers the craven hypocrisy of politicians and gender pay differences:
President Obama can’t have it both ways, either: a) there are gender pay differences throughout the economy and in any organization including at the White House, which can be explained by factors other than gender discrimination including age, years of continuous work experience, education, differences in positions, hours worked, marital status, number of children, workplace environment and safety, industry differences, etc., or b) any gender pay gap in aggregate, unadjusted salaries automatically exposes gender discrimination – including the White House – and Obama needs to explain why he is “waging a war on his women staffers” by paying them less than men on average.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Pelosi hates inequality as long as she is more unequal than 99.9% of the population

The New York Times does a hit piece on Rubio for making $800k on a book and how he spent it, but is silent on the Pelosi millions?  I am shocked.

The National Review updates the enormous wealth of the woman who rails against inequality:
Nancy Pelosi may be one of the most liberal members of the U.S. House, where she runs the Democratic caucus, railing against income inequality and the avarice of the 1 percent. But she also happens to be one of the body’s wealthiest members: In Washington, she lives in a multimillion-dollar Georgetown condo; she owns a 16-acre vineyard in Napa Valley and a 3,700 square-foot house in San Francisco’s tony Pacific Heights, according to her May 2015 financial disclosure statements. 
Her May 2015 financial-disclosure statements,showing income that places her in the top one-tenth of the 1 percent of Americans, may surprise some in light of the concern she’s expressed about income equality and the distribution of wealth. 
“We’re talking about addressing the disparity in our country of income, where the wealthy people continue to get wealthier,” Pelosi said in 2010 at a United Steelworkers’ event. “That disparity is not just about wages alone,” she added. “That disparity is about ownership and equity. It’s all about fairness in our country.” 
But even as she’s publicly bemoaned the rich getting richer, Pelosi’s fortune has grown...
...Though financial-disclosure forms list only ranges of assets and liabilities, Pelosi listed between $42.4 million and $199.5 million in assets in 2013, which was enough for Bloomberg Business to deem her the richest member of House leadership from either party. By 2014, she and her husband, investment banker Paul Pelosi, were doing even better: She reported between $43.4 million and $202 million in assets...
Read the whole thing here 

The Greece situation explained in one chart

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The NY Times thinks its OK to make fun of religious leaders as long as they are white and don't have adherents that may kill you

The New York Times executive editor said the following regarding his decision not to publish the Charlie Hebdo cartoons:
...depictions of the prophet Muhammad are sacrilegious; those that are meant to mock even more so. “We have a standard that is long held and that serves us well: that there is a line between gratuitous insult and satire. Most of these are gratuitous insult.”...
That said it is hard to reconcile this position with the New York Times decision to print a  photo of a depiction of  Pope John Paul made entirely from condoms:


Of course the reality is they are progressive cowards whose adherence to political correctness eliminates their ability to be impartial on virtually any subject.  

Monday, June 29, 2015

As Maggie said eventually socialists run out of other peoples money to spend

The problem in Greece is not really that complicated.  They don't want to run out of other peoples money to spend:

Alexis Tsipras says the deal his European partners, principally Germany, and the IMF want Athens to agree to is “humiliating” and “undemocratic”. To “prove” his point, the Greek Prime Minister is organising a referendum on it fully four days after the latest repayment to the IMF falls due. By then, with a run on the Greek banks already well under way, it may be too late anyway.

If being asked to pay your debts on time is being humiliated then pretty much every nation on earth has been thus humbled, including Britain. Of course you have to feel sympathy for the average Greek pensioner or teacher, who has no great personal responsibility for the crisis. Yet the Greek nation as a whole does have such responsibility. They got into the euro by publishing some massaged statistics on the health of their economy. Athens borrowed – public and private sector – vast sums at “German” low interest rates that had previously been unavailable.

Then they had a decade-long party on the proceeds, failing to invest in the productive capacity of the Greek economy, spending instead on cushy early retirement deals in the public sector and German cars – with widespread failure to pay taxes. Hence the mess Greece, Europe and the IMF find themselves in now.

Undemocratic? What Greece seems to be telling the world is that it should be relieved of its debt obligations because that’s what the Greek people voted for. Even if the referendum was not too late it would be an irrelevance, and certainly not the product of a mature democracy, which Greece, above all others, really ought to be...

The Independent

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Heroic hotel workers in Tunisia are real Muslims

Gunman Seifeddine Rezgui can be seen wandering away from a group of local men who have formed a human chain to protect tourists on a neighbouring beach

The horrific massacre in Tunisia would have been much worse if not for the bravery of local workers who risked their lives to protect western tourists targeted by a lone gunman.  As per the Daily Mail:
A survivor of the massacre in Tunisia has revealed local hotel staff members formed a human shield on the beach in a heroic bid to protect tourists from the rampaging gunman. 
John Yeoman, 46, said Muslim staff members from the Bellevue Hotel told the gunman he would have to kill them first as they formed a human barricade between the shooter and Western tourists. 
The chain of bodies can be seen in images taken of killer Seifeddine Rezgui which emerged yesterday - about a dozen men stand side-by-side as the gunman, pictured in the foreground, marches away from them carrying his Kalashnikov... 
...The gunman, who openly declared he was targeting Western tourists during the killing spree, was also told: 'You will have to get past us, but we're Muslim...

CNN confuses butt plugs for ISIS flag

24 hour news at its very best...

Saturday, June 27, 2015

"Trigger warning" idiocy has reached warp speed

A feminist website has determined that the term "trigger warning" is itself a trigger and thus should not be used:
...Everyday Feminism definitely believes in giving people a heads up about material that might provoke our reader’s trauma. However, we use the phrase “content warning” instead of “trigger warning,” as the word “trigger” relies on and evokes violent weaponry imagery. This could be re-traumatizing for folks who have suffered military, police, and other forms of violence. So, while warnings are so necessary and the points in this article are right on, we strongly encourage the term “content warning” instead of “trigger warning.”...

For more go here 

Friday, June 26, 2015

Uber problem in Paris: Bastiat must be rolling in his grave

CNN reports on the dismal state of taxis in Paris:
...Paris has about 2,000 more cab licenses than New York, which has a much bigger population, but New York has a vast fleet of cars for hire to supplement medallion cabs -- and except for the luxury market, car services are illegal in Paris...
...Back in 1937, Paris capped the number of taxi permits at 14,000. Now, 75 years later, a bigger and vastly richer Paris receives some 27 million tourist visits per year -- and the number of cabs has edged up less than 14%, to 15,900. Result: In wind and rain and baking sun, Parisians must stand in long lines at taxi stands for cabs that never come... 
Millions of Parisians and visitors alike are inconvenienced for the benefit of 15,900 taxi permit holders. If only the French and their politicians could listen to the enduring wisdom of their esteemed countryman Frederic Bastiat:
 "Treat all economic questions from the viewpoint of the consumer, for the interests of the consumer are the interests of the human race."
In France, and elsewhere,  the reality is that a service, such as Uber, providing a convenient, pleasant and inexpensive service to the masses is secondary to the interests of the few.

Neil Young: Celebrity hypocrite of the day award

Neil Young was less than happy to be publicly associated with the Donald, who played one of his songs during his recent presidential announcement, but apparently was totally comfortable with asking him to invest in his latest venture...

Buffoon of the day: Gillibrand vs due process and indeed common sense

Image result for gillibrand

Kirsten Gillibrand, pictured above with an actual sexual predator, continues her campaign against due process:

...Capitalizing on this new wave of calls for draconian responses to an overstated problem is Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, the Senate's resident campus sexual assault alarmist. She's been making the rounds over the past week stoking the flames of bias against accused students and bemoaning due process as an impediment to justice.

Last Wednesday Gillibrand appeared on a panel hosted by the Washington Post, where she complained about how long criminal trials take. She made a similar claim Monday night on MSNBC, saying: "So the reason why there is a dual system is so that you can have a way to handle this case if the survivor doesn't feel comfortable going through a criminal trial — that could take a year or two or two or three."

Curse those long, thorough investigations with facts and evidence! We demand mob justice NOW!

Gillibrand was also interviewed for Sunday night's "Dateline," where she acknowledged that rape is a felony: "We're talking about rape. We're talking about a felony offense, a dangerous crime — and dangerous criminals on these campuses."

Yet Gillibrand's solution for this supposedly pervasive problem is not to treat sexual assault like it's a felony, but to treat it as a mere campus disciplinary matter. During the Post panel, Gillibrand said the reason schools could use a low standard of proof (just 50.01 percent sure the accused is telling the truth) and deny due process was "Because you're not throwing someone in jail."

So on the one hand she's saying that this is a serious issue and that we need to protect victims, and on the other hand she is saying "don't worry, accused students, the punishment isn't that bad."

To treat sexual assault seriously, it needs to be treated like the felony that it is. But that would mean requiring due process and sworn statements, something that would reduce the number of "victims" Gillibrand can claim to support.

For more go here


Justice Scalia dissents:
“Words no longer have meaning if an Exchange that is not established by a State is ‘established by the State." 
“Under all the usual rules of interpretation, in short, the Government should lose this case. But normal rules of interpretation seem always to yield to the overriding principle of the present Court: The Affordable Care Act must be saved.” 
“Today’s interpretation is not merely unnatural; it is unheard of. Who would ever have dreamt that ‘Exchange established by the State’ means ‘Exchange established by the State or the Federal Government’?” 
“It is bad enough for a court to cross out ‘by the State’ once. But seven times?” 
“More importantly, the Court forgets that ours is a government of laws and not of men. That means we are governed by the terms of our laws, not by the unenacted will of our lawmakers.”
For more go here

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Gay student found guilty of sexual assault for staring at his lover's penis in the shower (among other heinous acts)

Just when you thought the current state of politically correct idiocy on campus could not get any more insane Brandeis University has stepped into the sexual assault fray with a fresh example of stunning stupidity.

Yes another tale of boy meets, in this case, boy, a falling out after a lengthy relationship and the accused having his record tarnished for life by charges that are unproven and seemingly laughable.

All the sordid details can be found here but here is a slice:
... one infraction determined by the investigator...was an alleged unwanted advance by the accused (at that point a closeted gay man) toward the accuser (at that point openly gay)—just before the two commenced their long-term relationship. Both sides agree the advance occurred. If the two didn’t have a 21-month relationship that began just after the alleged unwanted advance, perhaps the accuser’s tale might have some credibility. ...if the advance was unwanted, why did the accuser, who was open about his sexuality, decide nonetheless to initiate and maintain a long-term relationship with his alleged assaulter?

Similarly, Brandeis defends its investigator’s “balanced” conclusion that the accused student committed sexual misconduct by: (a) sometimes waking up his sleeping boyfriend with kisses; (b) sometimes staring at his long-term boyfriend’s nude body in the communal showers; and (c) sometimes getting “sulky” when the two didn’t have sex. 

Even if true, by those standards one or both partners of virtually any long-term couple at Brandeis (or anyplace else) could be deemed a rapist by the college. By describing behavior customary to many long-term relationships as sexual assault, Brandeis trivializes actual sexual assault...

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Two concepts now considered hurtful: Personal responsibility and free will.

The Washington Post reports that America is getting even fatter:
An analysis published in JAMA Internal Medicine on Monday found that 75 percent of men and 67 percent of women ages 25 and older are now overweight or obese. That's a startling shift from 20 years ago when 63 percent of men and 55 percent of women were overweight or obese and a depressing sign that campaigns to get Americans to eat healthier and exercise more may be failing....
However, the LA Times identifies a possible solution:
Are conservatives more likely to stick to a diet than liberals? The answer might be yes.

In a paper published Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers say there is a link between political ideology and the ability to exert self-control. In a series of three studies with more than 300 participants, the authors found that people who identify as conservative perform better on tests of self-control than those who identify as liberal regardless of race, socioeconomic status and gender.

They also report that participants' performance on the tests was influenced by how much they believed in the idea of free will, which the researchers define as the belief that a person is largely responsible for his or her own outcomes...
 No, I am not suggesting that everyone become conservative, but these researchers may be onto something with this old fashioned and out of favor concept of personal  responsibility.  It could even apply to aspects of one's life other than morbid obesity. Yes really!

I know.  A really radical unreasonable concept.  People are generally much more comfortable telling other people to stop engaging in what they believe to be collectively damaging behaviors (global warming climate change for example)  than they are actually taking responsibility for their own behavior.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Apparently many appendectomies are not necessary

For more than 100 years, the standard treatment for appendicitis has been surgery. Now a large Finnish study provides the best evidence to date that most patients can be treated with antibiotics alone.
The study, published Tuesday in JAMA, involved 530 patients aged 18 to 60 who agreed to have their treatment — antibiotics or surgery — decided at random.
Three out of four who took antibiotics recovered easily, the researchers found. And none who had surgery after taking antibiotics were worse off for having waited.
“The time has come to consider abandoning routine appendectomy for patients with uncomplicated appendicitis...
Shockingly when the Times interviewed a surgeon, who makes a living cutting peoples appendix out,  he was less than impressed with the idea of limiting his income avoiding surgery:
 ...Dr. Philip S. Barie, a surgeon at Weill Cornell Medical College, noted that antibiotics were not sufficient for more than a quarter of the patients in the new study and said the failure rate was unacceptable.
 Even worse for those making money from treating appendicitis it appears that maybe neither surgery nor antibiotics are required in many cases:
Accumulating data has led other experts to raise an even more controversial idea: Perhaps antibiotics aren’t always necessary, either. It is possible, some researchers say, that most people with appendicitis would get better on their own if doctors did nothing.
The Finnish team is now planning a clinical trial to test that theory.
 For more go here

I know we expect politicians to lie but does Hillary ever tell the truth?

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used her personal email account to handle high level negotiations in 2011 for a no-fly zone to help topple Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi, according to a series of emails obtained by Fox News, challenging her claim the private server did not hold classified information. 
The emails, linked here, conflict with Clinton's statement that she did not put national security at risk by using a personal account...
Of course Hillary claims:
 "I did not email any classified material to anyone on my email. There is no classified material,"  Clinton, now a candidate for president, told reporters in March. "I'm certainly well-aware of the classification requirements and did not send classified material."

For more go here

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Good point

The average CEO earns less than the average dentist. One hurts you and the other creates jobs and products that people want


 Mark Perry asks an obvious question:
Why don’t we ever hear about “excessive” or “obscene” dentist/family practice MD/internist/psychiatrist wages? Or about objectionable “Dentist-to-Average Worker Pay” ratios?
Of course, there are some CEOs who earn multimillion dollar pay packages, while there are probably no dentists making millions of dollars per year, so it’s the “excessive” pay of a few hundred outlier CEOs that gets all of the media and union attention. But it’s an important point that gets completely lost in the discussion of “obscene” CEO pay – the average CEO earns just slightly more than the average dentist and less on average than nine medical occupations that are listed above.

Carpe Diem