Friday, December 19, 2008

Hardly a surprise

Bush caves, TARP funds get raided for a use that was never discussed during the legislative process, and the UAW gets its bailout. Of course, the market has been losing ground again lately; something had to be done to perk it up, and as bailouts go, this one isn't so expensive. Happy Friday, everyone.

GM and Chrysler to Receive Up to $17.4 Billion in Loans

I was taught that when you find you have dug yourself into a hole, the first thing to do was stop digging. I guess no one in either Detroit or Washington has learned that--yet.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Oh look, more of the Chicago Mafia coming to Washington

A few weeks ago, many looked at the Big O's appointments (most Clinton administration retreads) and said "It looks like 4 more years of the Clintons". After the latest appointment, Arne Duncan to be the Secretary of Education, I'm starting to wonder if Obama isn't channeling Jimmy Carter instead. After all, it seems that he's bringing many his old cronies friends from back home with him, just like Carter did. Let's hope for the same result--4 years and out.

Perhaps he'll find a job for Gov. Blagojevich in the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and Bill Ayers in Homeland Security. But for the life of me, I can't figure out where to put Rev. Wright.

Is this "Change we can believe in"?

The U.S. Treasury may adopt a plan that would let a car czar or the Treasury secretary force General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC into bankruptcy if the automakers don’t show they can survive without government aid, a U.S. senator said.

Now that US senator is Carl Levin (Asshat-MI), so I do take this statement as something of an exercise in trial balloning. Or perhaps as a threat to GM and Chrysler (and by extension, the UAW) that they had better play along with the new administration--or else. Or both, perhaps.

I find it troubling that the US government is even considering choosing who wins and who loses in the marketplace. This is the red flag warning that our capitalist system is being overthrown in favor of a socialist-inspired command-and-control system. While I have no problem with creditors forcing a company into bankruptcy, I have a big problem with the government doing it.

As a nation, we face dark days ahead if these sorts of things are allowed to happen.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Almost missed it

Today is Bill of Rights Day.

Resolved, by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two-thirds of both Houses concurring, that the following articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as amendments to the Constitution of the United States; all or any of which articles, when ratified by three-fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes as part of the said Constitution, namely:

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment II

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment III

No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

Amendment VII

In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
These ten amendments were adopted after a number of states became concerned that the Constitution could be misconstrued on these issues. They also viewed it as a bit of added emphasis. "Hey, we're not joking--these things are important!"

It's also worth noting that they are a package deal--you have to accept them all. None of this "I like the First, but the Second sucks" business.

Some people have asked the rhetorical question "What is worth fighting for?" I'd say that these are as deserving of our "life, liberty and sacred honor" just as much now as they were then. And we'd better start getting ready to fight for them again.

The logic of the left

(Via the Drudge Report)

It's OK to laugh and point if you happen to run into Seth Borenstein, AP "writer":

Mother Nature, of course, is oblivious to the federal government's machinations. Ironically, 2008 is on pace to be a slightly cooler year in a steadily rising temperature trend line. Experts say it's thanks to a La Nina weather variation. While skeptics are already using it as evidence of some kind of cooling trend, it actually illustrates how fast the world is warming.

Just remember, Seth (you tool), we're laughing at you, not with you.

"...the U.S. should probably declare bankruptcy."

Yeah, you know it's going to be a warm and fuzzy day when you see a remark like that in the traditional press, even if they do specialize in financial sector news.

The US government is engaging in a race to the bottom--zero interest rates, deficit spending on an epic scale, bailouts of everyone who can hire a lobbyist and printing presses running 24x7. Would you care to guess who is guaranteed to come in last place in that race?

If you guessed the folks who have been conservative with their spending over the past 25 years--the kind of folks who bought a home they could afford on a 30 year fixed note with payments they could handle--the kind of folks who are driving 10 year-old cars that they bought new--the sort of folks who actually work for a living--then you, my friend, win a cookie.

Stop the spending, stop the bailouts and stop the presses. The faster we get this over with, the less it will hurt.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Thomasville High School--NC 1AA Football Champions!

For the 4th time in 5 years. Way to go Bulldogs!

Pictures of the game are here.

The way things used to be

Sure, it's convenient to make one stop at Walmart and get everything from groceries to an oil change. But we've given up something special for that.

Google News...news

(Via the Drudge Report)

If Google News is one of your information sources, you might want to read this piece from The Register. Short version--the placement of stories is no longer determined by a computer algorithm, but by Google staff members. While it's possible that the original method was skewed, it's certain that this one will be.