Archive for the 'Republicans' Category

Bottom of the barrel

Monday, January 13th, 2014

We watched the bizarre awards show the other night, despite having seen none of the movies or the TV shows (except for part of the last episode of Breaking Bad). The only really interesting thing about it is that no one seems to care enough in these times to conceal their vulgarity or drunkenness.

600 million times a day

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

Compare this piece in the Onion (“600 million times a day”) with this one in the NYT. Newspaper of record indeed! Take a break, relax. Heck, we have a government that engages in the worst sort of leftism while terrible tragedies go unattended. The proles are useful when needed apparently. The less education the better, the politicians say, and the media don’t call them on anything, because they are accomplices. So take a break and live in the past for a moment. They used to have an excellent veal chop at Elaine’s…..

The usual

Saturday, January 11th, 2014

Roger Simon has a chart illustrating that there has been no decrease in unemployment in the last five years. TNR has a doubleplusgood piece telling us that we never really wanted to go to Cedars Sinai, and anyway it’s really bad. The author ought to team up with this government official — oh wait, they’re already on the same team. Depressing, boring, and idiotic, all at the same time!

Oo ee oo ah ah ting tang walla walla bing bang…

Friday, January 10th, 2014

US government:

If you’ve been hearing that extreme cold spells like the one that we’re having in the United States now disproves global warming, don’t believe it…a growing body of evidence suggests that the kind of extreme cold being experienced by much of the United States as we speak is a pattern that we can expect to see with increasing frequency as global warming continues…the far north, the Arctic, is warming roughly twice as rapidly as the mid-latitudes, such as the United States. That means that the temperature difference between the Arctic and the mid-latitudes is shrinking. And that temperature difference drives what is called the circumpolar vortex which is the great counter-clockwise swirling mass of cold air that hovers over the Arctic. As the temperature difference between the Arctic and the mid-latitudes declines, the polar vortex weakens and it becomes wavier. The waviness means that there can be increased larger excursions of cold air southward…we can expect as a result of global warming to see more of this pattern of extreme cold

Two points: (a) this sort of explanation reminds us of this; and (b) if global warming makes the US colder, isn’t global warming somebody else’s problem? Get the mukluks out of storage!

How countries die

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

DOJ:

intentional discrimination occurs when a school has a discipline policy that is neutral on its face (meaning the language of the policy does not explicitly differentiate between students based on their race), but the school administers the policy in a discriminatory manner or when a school permits the ad hoc and discriminatory discipline of students in areas that its policy does not fully address. Such intentional discrimination in the administration of student discipline can take many forms. The typical example is when similarly situated students of different races are disciplined differently for the same offense. Students are similarly situated when they are comparable, even if not identical, in relevant respects. For example, assume a group of Asian-American and Native-American students, none of whom had ever engaged in or previously been disciplined for misconduct, got into a fight, and the school conducted an investigation. If the school could not determine how the fight began and had no information demonstrating that students behaved differently during the fight, e.g., one group used weapons, then the school’s decision to discipline the Asian-American students more harshly than the Native-American students would raise an inference of intentional discrimination. Selective enforcement of a facially neutral policy against students of one race is also prohibited intentional discrimination. This can occur, for example, when a school official elects to overlook a violation of a policy committed by a student who is a member of one racial group, while strictly enforcing the policy against a student who is a member of another racial group. It can occur at the classroom level as well. The Departments often receive complaints from parents that a teacher only refers students of a particular race outside of the classroom for discipline, even though students of other races in that classroom commit the same infractions. Where this is true, there has been selective enforcement, even if an administrator issues the same consequence for all students referred for discipline. Intentional discrimination also occurs when a school adopts a facially neutral policy with the intent to target students of a particular race for invidious reasons. This is so even if the school punishes students of other races under the policy. For example, if school officials believed that students of a particular race were likely to wear a particular style of clothing, and then, as a means of penalizing students of that race (as opposed to as a means of advancing a legitimate school objective), adopted a policy that made wearing that style of clothing a violation of the dress code, the policy would constitute unlawful intentional discrimination.

Yes, we heard from Amy Chua that the fight above was about getting extra adderall so some could study a full 26 hours a day. Seriously, common sense is all but illegal in this country; Larry elder explains. HT: PL

Which do you prefer?

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Forbes:

Roquefort, The King Of All Cheese Towns…If you appreciate cheese that tastes like cheese, that punches you in the mouth like cheese, and demands a full-bodied red wine to cut its mind-altering strength in half…then a visit to the town for which the world-famous sheep’s milk cheese is named is a must. Not for nothing is it the second-most consumed cheese in France after Gruyère. Also known as “the king of cheeses”…it’s produced under a strict set of conditions and within the geographically-unique caves of the Combalou mountain in France’s midi-Pyrénées. Thanks to the collapse of the Combalou approximately a million years ago during the Quaternary Period, the area is thoroughly perforated with fleurines, a series of tunnels that run from the cheese caves through to the side of the mountain. These ubiquitous crevices allow for a steady replenishment of fresh air, which along with the efforts of the town’s master cheese-makers, keeps the caves at an almost-steady 50 degrees Fahrenheit – a temperature ideal for the maturation of this unique sheep’s-milk cheese…the very fungus that gives Roquefort its power is a product of this geographic magic – the cold and the humidity (an estimated 90 percent) allow for the growth of Penicillium roqueforti, which is injected into the milk during the mixing process. Over the course of three to twelve months, the mold produces the telltale veins that give Roquefort its characteristic bite and flavor. Back in the day, locals harvested the fungus from loaves of bread left in the caves…We took the road from Toulouse to the small town of Roquefort, perched on the mountainside, and the trip became part of the experience. Tight winding roads snake their way up the midi-Pyrénées, through hidden villages via two-way roads…The only thing better is the free cheese offered at the end of the tour of Société’s 11-story-high caves.

Which do you prefer, this cheese or this potato?

Couch potato

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

NYT:

he is drawn in his spare time to shows like HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and “Boardwalk Empire,” the kind of heavy, darkly rendered television that echoes the sadness and strife that make up so much of his workday…he is also keenly awaiting the new season of the Netflix show “House of Cards,” which starkly depicts a dysfunctional Washington — a theme that must seem all too familiar. At a meeting of technology executives last week, he jokingly lamented his own inability to maneuver in the way of Kevin Spacey’s character, Frank Underwood…“I wish things were that ruthlessly efficient,” he was overheard saying…he joked of the sleazy, congressman-murderer Mr. Underwood, “This guy’s getting a lot of stuff done”…he is working his way through the DVD box set of AMC’s “Breaking Bad,” the award-winning TV drama about a drug-dealing high school teacher. The show just ended after five seasons, but he is way behind and frequently reminds those around him not to give anything away…Breaking Bad” and “House of Cards” are hardly the exceptions to what has become a clear pattern. he is also a devotee of Showtime’s “Homeland,” which offers an eerily familiar mirror to foreign policy adventures: terrorism, Iranian nuclear negotiations, drone strikes, and an intelligence agency struggling for legitimacy…he is a big fan of “Game of Thrones,” a brutal imagining of the wars in medieval Europe. He has raved about “Boardwalk Empire” and ITV’s “Downton Abbey,” two period dramas that document the angst and difficulties that people faced during those times. And he has worked his way through the DVDs of AMC’s smoldering “Mad Men” series, telling friends that the character of Peggy Olson has given him insight…Then there is HBO’s “The Wire,” which he has repeatedly called one of the “greatest shows of all time.” The drama depicted the poverty-stricken projects in Baltimore and documented the drug war between worn-out cops and the city’s African-American residents. His favorite character: Omar Little, the stickup man who robs the drug dealers…He is a rabid sports fan, and friends and colleagues say he enjoys ESPN’s “SportsCenter.” He also once told TV Guide that he and his family watch ABC’s “Modern Family” and NBC’s “Parks and Recreation”

We liked the first season of Mad Men, but haven’t seen any of the others. We haven’t got the time. HT: Powerline

All is well, comrades

Sunday, January 5th, 2014

The NSA says that Congressmen are just as unsurveilled as any other American:

NSA’s authorities to collect signals intelligence data include procedures that protect the privacy of U.S. persons. Such protections are built into and cut across the entire process. Members of Congress have the same privacy protections as all U.S. persons

Comforting, yes? It’s nice when left and right can agree. Meanwhile, the author of the Looming Tower asks other disturbing questions about NSA surveillance and government competence. Our POV: if 4 of the 9-11 hijackers were in the US on expired visas, and even NPR notes that half of vias holders overstay their legal welcome, wazzup with collecting massive data on every American when there are so many people left to do illegal things on a daily basis?

One cancelled plan, thousands of wasted hours

Saturday, January 4th, 2014

Taranto:

Remember Edie Sundby? She is the stage 4 gallbladder-cancer survivor who wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed two months ago in which she revealed that “my affordable, lifesaving medical insurance policy has been canceled effective Dec. 31.” While we were vacationing in chilly Southern California, we went to see her in San Diego to get an update on her insurance situation.

Atop her injury Mrs. Sundby has endured insult–imposed not by the law but by the nasty politics of a desperate administration and its supporters. It took the form of a propaganda campaign–led by the Center for American Progress and, as we noted the day her op-ed ran, cheered on by the White House–aimed at discrediting her. (Last month the president tapped John Podesta, the center’s founder, to be White House counsel. Earlier, in an interview with Politico’s Glenn Thrush, Podesta described House Republicans as “a cult worthy of Jonestown.”)

Igor Volsky, who’d launched the attack with a post on the center’s ThinkProgress.org site the day the op-ed ran, published a follow-up a few days later titled “The Cancer Patient From The Wall Street Journal Will Likely Save Thousands Under Obamacare.” This time, he claimed, he had numbers to prove it. But those numbers were only a guess, and Volsky guessed wrong.

“Relying on [her existing insurer] PacifiCare’s base rate filings with the California Department of Insurance, ThinkProgress estimated how much Sundby and her husband (who is on the same plan) could be paying,” Volsky wrote. He inflated the “base rate filing” by a “conservative” 40% “to account for underwriting–the process by which insurers increase premiums to account for beneficiaries’ health.” He came up with a figure of $2,186 for the monthly premium, or $26,241 a year. (The arithmetic was off by $9, presumably because he was rounding the published numbers but not the ones used in his calculation.) He added $11,000–a $3,000 deductible and $8,000 maximum in-network copayment–to come up with a total expense of $37,241.

Volsky then “searched the California exchange for the most expensive and expansive health care plan in San Diego and found a Platinum-level ‘Ultimate PPO’ from Blue Cross.” The monthly premium is $1,919, or $23,028 a year, for a plan with an $8,000 out-of-pocket maximum. That’s a total of $31,028. If all this had been correct, the Sundbys would stand to save more than $6,000.

In November we set out to check Volsky’s figures. Mrs. Sundby gave her insurance broker permission to speak with us about her case, and the broker was able to confirm that Volsky’s figures for the platinum plan were accurate to within a few dollars.

But as to the canceled plan, Volsky turned out to be using the Yglesias Method of making stuff up. Mrs. Sundby supplied us with statements from PacifiCare, which show that the monthly 2013 premium was just $1,107–an increase of 27%, not 40%, from 2012. The deductible was $5,000 and the individual in-network copayment $4,000. It adds up to $22,284–nearly $9,000 less than Volsky’s figure for the Blue Cross platinum plan.

Two additional caveats are necessary: First, the Sundbys’ old plan was not for the couple alone but also covered two daughters, both of whom turn 26 this year and thus will no longer be eligible for the family plan. Second, individual out-of-pocket maximums are generally half the family total, so that the comparable figure for the platinum plan would have been $4,000 less than Volsky’s estimate, or $27,028. Thus the Blue Cross plan would have cost 21% more despite covering two people instead of four.

The Sundbys ended up purchasing a “silver” plan from Blue Shield with a monthly premium of $1,438 and an individual out-of-pocket maximum of $6,350. That’s an annual total of $23,606, not counting any out-of-pocket expenses Mr. Sundby (who is in excellent health) might incur–or a modest 6% increase over the equivalent 2013 PacifiCare costs.

To be sure, even if PacifiCare hadn’t canceled the Sundbys’ policy, it likely would have hiked their premiums. Given that the increase between 2012 and 2013 was 27%, the new plan sounds like an improvement. But remember that their adult daughters are no longer on the plan. If they take out insurance, the premiums are likely to be considerably higher than they would be absent ObamaCare price controls, which soak the young in order to benefit the middle-aged.

More important, the analysis of costs alone misses the central point. While Blue Shield is not charging a great deal more than PacifiCare would have under their old plan, it is for a vastly inferior product. As Mrs. Sundby wrote in her op-ed, she has received care from three hospitals. Her primary oncologist is at Stanford University’s Cancer Institute. She got less specialized treatment such as chemotherapy locally, at Moores Cancer Center, part of the University of California, San Diego. She has also been treated at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

No plan available in San Diego includes both UCSD and Stanford in its network, so the Sundbys were forced to choose between them. The Blue Shield plan covers care at Stanford, so that she will now have to get local care elsewhere.

Volsky did acknowledge in his penultimate paragraph that Mrs. Sundby “may need to find a different health care provider…If Sundby continues to see the non-participating doctors, she will incur additional out-of-pocket health care costs.” That is, he treated as an afterthought the actual injury ObamaCare inflicts on her. She was victimized twice by the president’s consumer fraud. She lost the plan she liked and doctors she liked.

We didn’t write about this in November because our conversation with the Sundbys’ broker left us confused. The broker believed that ObamaCare plans would cover out-of-network treatments, with higher copayments but the same limit on total out-of-pocket expenses. That called into question the premise of Mrs. Sundby’s op-ed: Had the broker been right, Mrs. Sundby would have been able to get the same care at only somewhat higher cost.

But the broker was misinformed. Mrs. Sundby confirmed with an administrator at UCSD that none of the plans that included Stanford in their networks would cover the full cost of treatment at Moores. Mrs. Sundby told us that her new plan covers out-of-network care only up to the (far lower) negotiated fees for equivalent treatment within the network; the difference must be paid out of pocket and does not count toward the annual limit on out-of-pocket expenses.

That makes the cost of care at UCSD prohibitive and forces Mrs. Sundby to go to a lower-quality facility. (The Moores website boasts that it “is one of just 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, and the only one in the San Diego region.”) Mrs. Sundby told this columnist she is uncertain whether she will be able to return to M.D. Anderson should she need care there.

As Investor’s Business Daily noted in an editorial last month, the potential consequences of the narrow networks are profound and widespread: “A prominent New York insurance broker pointed out that most of the policies offered on the ObamaCare exchanges are not national networks, so ‘if you need routine medical services, they will not be covered when you leave your local area,’ as they were before.”

Travel health insurance, unfortunately, only covers emergencies. So, the broker told [The American Thinker's Stella] Paul, “a large portion of the population will have their insurance as a consideration for their mobility, which they never had before.” Imagine having to take all this into account in making decisions about where in America you want to live.

That the Sundbys’ broker, a seasoned insurance professional, was unaware of all this more than a month after the ObamaCare exchanges opened for business (and more than 3½ years after the law was enacted) suggests yet another serious systemic problem with ObamaCare: The government appears to have done a woefully inadequate job of educating even professionals in the field, much less ordinary consumers, about the law’s complicated and often destructive provisions. And this is in California, the state ObamaCare apologists have touted as the great success story.

“The health exchanges are so confusing, and the policy provider network details are not available,” Mrs. Sundby wrote us in an email the day after we met. “None of us who lost our insurance plans really know what we have bought on the exchange until after Jan. 1, 2014, when we start finding new doctors or making appointments with our established doctors.”

Mrs. Sundby knows better than most. An intelligent woman with a longstanding and complicated medical condition, she is about as savvy, motivated and well-informed as a health-insurance customer can get. Most Americans who get sick in the future will be far less well-prepared

Mr. and Mrs. Sundby, the broker or brokers, the hospitals and doctors, the insurance companies and the endless line of ill-informed government bureaucrats (not to mention the commentariat’s time) — thousands of hours have been spent in the last 3 or 4 months on one cancelled policy. Admittedly it is for an unusual case. But consider that this might take additional months to sort out, and who knows what other problems might be unearthed?

What multiple of these thousands of senselessly wasted hours should be applied to this nightmare from on high? Times 1,000,000 Americans? Times 10,000,000 Americans? Massive lost productivity and possibly lost lives from our centralizing utopians. A (deeply flawed) market has been thrown into chaos. The sensible approach would have been to begin with allowing insurance carriers to compete across state lines, and to eliminate, as far as possible, all the things that put insurers in the middle of mundane consumer-producer transactions, like office visits and routine drugs (handling the latter is a huge task in itself). Alas, that moment has passed. Humpty Dumpty is teetering.

Insane and not easily fixable

Friday, January 3rd, 2014

Take the top 14 companies in the Fortune 500. These include such diverse names as GM, GE, Wal-Mart, AT&T, Exxon, McKesson, Fannie Mae, and CVS. Imagine that some government genius came up with a clever scheme that you can sign up online to access services from all these companies, and that the companies will be able to seamlessly communicate with each other, and that this will all be done through a centralized government hub linking diverse federal departments, and done all at once without beta testing. Yes, it’s an imperfect analogy to the ACA, but apt in that the combined sales of these corporate behemoths approximates the size of the broadly defined US healthcare industry.

So the insane scheme would be a gigantic disaster in the regular corporate world and its proponents would be run out of town on a rail, or more likely in prison for multiple frauds and other felonies. And it’s a disaster that naturally metastasizes as the initial screw-ups propagate much more complex screw-ups down the line, and the improvised attempts at fixes create the impossibility of stability and long-term planning that are critical to running any enterprise. So at the moment the tiny problems only include doctors with scalpels aready unable to get authorization to operate, people are leaving ER’s due to cost uncertainties, and babies that can’t be added to coverage in the simple old ways. (Note in the linked US pieces that the MSM are still covering for these idiots.)

Stay tuned for worse. The many errors and omissions will continue to propagate faster than they can be fixed, since (among other things) the whole edifice was built on the frauds that (a) the young will subsidize the old by buying illogical, expensive products; and (b) the thousands of errors in the Rube Goldberg machine will cease propagating new and novel errors that we can’t even imagine today. Centralization simply can not keep up with the billions or trillions of individual decisions made by hundreds of millions of people in a swiftly moving technology and IT environment.

Centralization can do some things well, as Cuba, the USSR, North Korea, Mao’s China, and so on have demonstrated over the last hundred years. It can grind things to a halt and create chaos, which is what is happening. The really bad news is that once all the existing, stable systems (as awful and imperfect as they have often been) are disabled, and professional routine and the collective knowledge of doing things according to habit have been lost, all you’ve got is Humpty Dumpty.

Blowing hot and cold

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

A new computer model says it will be 6 degrees hotter in 2114! Help! Meanwhile, those fellows from the Guardian look a little chilly. And Al Gore has laid off 270 of his 300 employees. Hmmmmm. BTW, where did that darn Medieval Warm Period go?

Bi-partisan idiocy

Wednesday, January 1st, 2014

We blame Bush. He signed the law banning the good old light bulb and replacing it with something much more expensive, less powerful, and deadlier to boot. BTW, here’s an interesting piece on AGW while we’re talking about BPI.

The incredible pace of decline

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

Rich Lowry says it well.

Don’t go to grad school

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

A professor at a university says this:

Far from being “the perfect food,” milk offers a narrative about progress and perfection that embodies “the politics of American identity over the last 150 years” argues DuPuis, linking “the perfect whiteness of this food and the white body genetically capable of digesting it”…

Animal studies scholarship includes the varying approaches of posthumanism, human–animal studies, and critical animal studies…A recent article in Society and Animals appears to invoke Donna Haraway’s post-humanist construction of factory-farmed animals as “workers” in its framing and discussion of dairy cows as collaborating with the dairy producer. Haraway refers to “laboratory working animals” and “working animals in the food and fiber industries” as if being the experimental animal or the animal whose body is confined within the structures of industrial animal production were a sustainable “job” that animals might willingly choose, or resign from.

From the more activist standpoint of critical animal studies, “Haraway’s work has become paradigmatic of a largely depoliticized approach within Animal Studies,” evincing a clear humanist interest in human–animal relations that maintains species dominance. To date, the majority of research on milk comes from food studies scholars, vegan feminist and ecofeminist scholars, and feminist environmental science sources such as Sandra Steingraber’s Having Faith (2001) and Maia Boswell-Penc’s Tainted Milk (2006).

Both science sources address the nutritional value of human breast milk for mother and child, the “body-burden” of environmental toxins transferred through that milk, and more specifically the environmental racism challenged by the Akwesasne Mothers’ Milk project. Advocacy groups such as Environmental Working Group and the MOMS and POPS project regularly monitor milk as an environmental indicator of health, and have found perchlorate (a rocket fuel) in every sample of California supermarket cows’ milk as well as fame retardants (PBDE), pesticides (lindane, endosulfan, DDT), and other POPS in human breast milk.

This movement in environmental science affirms Katsi Cook’s insight that the mother’s body is the first environment, an insight that links the concerns of feminism, environmental justice, and interspecies justice. Postcolonial studies offers another critical perspective, building on Alfred Crosby’s concept of “ecological imperialism” to describe both the ruthless appropriation of indigenous land — particularly violating indigenous women, queers, and animals — and the introduction of exotic livestock and European agricultural practices.

The ecofeminists Val Plumwood and Vandana Shiva have pointed out the ways dualistic thinking and instrumental reasoning of the “Master Model” have constructed nature, the indigenous, and the animal as “other” to meet human (elite male) needs, and biocolonization functions as a continued practice, patenting indigenous knowledges and genetics, all under cover of “progress” through Western science and agribusiness.

Environmental racism and classism exemplify additional contemporary colonial practices, linking the continued expropriation of resources and transfer of wastes to communities of color, and rural and impoverished communities around the world. Until the work of Graham Huggan and Helen Tiffin, postcolonial studies had yet to “resituate the species boundary and environmental concerns” at the center of its inquiry, examining the “interfaces between nature and culture, animal and human.”

In spite of herself, Gaard also notes that since 1970 “consumption of cows’ milk has increased 17 times in China and 2.4 times in India.” Must be all the elite white maleness, eh? What does such a person think about Keystone? AGW? Etc. They have lifetime employment and are teaching your kids. Beware!

Update: Roger Kimball has some thoughts on this as well.

Good riddance

Monday, December 30th, 2013

VDH takes a wrecking ball to 2013. Other large parts of the PJ crew do the same to the corrupt and poorly educated media. Meanwhile, Steyn demonstrates that we haven’t learned anything in the last dozen years. And, late breaking news: the Antarctic is really cold. Good riddance to 2013. Funny thing, 2014 doesn’t look any better in some respects.

CEO?

Sunday, December 29th, 2013

Thoughts from a Blue Cross veteran:

– Employers will be mandated to buy your policies for 2014
– (Oops, employers are angry)
– Employers won’t be mandated until 2015 – if then
– Small employers will give workers a choice of health plans through the SHOP program in 2014
– (Oops, we can’t get the web site ready in time)
– Small employers won’t have to offer a choice of plan until – sometime later
– You must cancel these individual policies
– (Oops, public backlash)
– You must reinstate these policies
– (Oops, many insurance commissioners won’t allow it)
– You must continue to cover providers and drugs even for cancelled policies
– The deadline for enrollment will be December 15, 2013
– (Oops, web site problems)
– The deadline for enrollment will be December 23, 2013
– (Oops, too much traffic)
– The deadline for enrollment will be December 24, 2013
– Never mind, there is no deadline
– First month’s premium must be received by December 31, 2013
– (Oops, back-end problems with the web site)
– First month’s premium must be received by January 8, 2014
– Make that January 10, 2014
– How can anyone run a business this way?

CEO = Chief Expletive Officer. Utter chaos.

Funny stuff

Friday, December 27th, 2013

Salon:

the world as we know it is ending, and no one can reasonably hope to avoid the constellation of catastrophic, ecological and social disasters that are all but certain to manifest, exacerbating one another’s horrific, deadly consequences. And yet our politicians can’t be bothered to care, a substantial portion of Americans aren’t convinced that it’s even happening (despite overwhelming, unimpeachable evidence to the contrary), and the enormity of the issue is downplayed basically everywhere…It’s strange, this deep indifference to the greatest threat the industrialized world has ever faced…By the middle of the century, the comfortable, wealthy, relatively-peaceful world as we know it simply won’t exist. The consequences of worldwide coastal devastation and the subsequent infrastructure damage from super-storms and storm surges combined with the “death” of the oceans – with ominous consequences beyond our current predictive capabilities — will ravage the world, our politics and our peace, preventing even the most insulated peoples and cultures from continuing their fat and happy early-21st-century lifestyles. And unlike every other time such apocalyptic predictions have been levied, these are based on extraordinarily well-researched, peer-reviewed studies and reports from hundreds of the world’s most well-respected scientist

Are we surprised to discover that the writer is in his 20′s and is vulgar? Hey so is Pajama Boy. The country is in the very best of hands.

Ho Ho Ho!

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Merry Christmas! We’re in an excellent frame of mind, in part because a complex business undertaking seems to be coming together nicely, and could yield some spectacular results. Not particularly Christmas-y perhaps, but what the heck. In fact, we’re in such a good mood that this essay by the Spengler of our time, Mark Steyn, couldn’t dampen our mood. For fun, we link to the droll piece from several years ago by T. Coddington Van Voorhees VII endorsing you know whom. And isn’t it precious that the Supreme Leader and all those other swell Iranian Poo-Bahs are wishing us all Merry Christmas. Gosh, things are great! Enjoy the day….

Madness and stunts

Tuesday, December 24th, 2013

Madness and stunts indeed! Here’s madness, since after all, whatever else Jesus was, he was a Jew. Here are some more ruminations on the madness theme. As for stunts, consider the timing of the GQ kerfuffle and the possibility that the whole thing was cooked up by A&E’s Mad Men to generate unlimited free advertising for their 25 hour DD marathon. Unbelievable luck, or a solid marketing plan? You decide.

The clown posse running your life: just a two trick pony

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

It’s amazing, in retrospect, just how superficial the clown posse was. They were able to fool the old people five years ago, in part because their crazy-grandiose promises were delivered so nicely, and people wanted to believe what seemed like a nice young man. We knew the fellow was a fad like the hula-hoop and not a messiah, but the media genuflected before him and bade us all do so as well, under penalty of being called nasty names.

So trick number one was a promise of utopia. Nice enough, but it has a short shelf life if utopia doesn’t arrive as promised. Which brings us to 2012. Many of the older people with eyes to see had figured out that the clown posse were congenital frauds and liars; so the path to victory lay with the young, particularly the females, to be wooed and wed to the government. But promises of bliss were no longer enough; so the posse and their media servants sought to transform this into this. And mirabile dictu, it worked! The posse won the Julias by 5.4 million votes, and that made all the difference.

So the posse had two tricks, but that’s all they had. They never did anything in the real world and don’t know anything about it. They’re the Pajama Boy crowd. They think they know things and are a new, superior sort, but all they know is the world of images. And it’s getting pathetic. The dumbest Julia and Julio out there may not know much, but they look at their paychecks and they watch their pennies. There is zero probability that they are going to pay a high price for something they don’t need, and therein lies the tale. They may even learn that it’s unpleasant to be lied to and treated as a sucker, and that would be an extra benefit.