Rants, Recipes and Ramblings

Political Rants

Opening bet on 2010

I’m thinking of betting that BHO circa 2012 will pull an LBJ circa 1968 (who actually just quoted Sherman circa 1884).

Wonder what odds a British bookmaker would give me this far out? Think Vegas or Atlantic City would take that action?

PayGo. Just another Man behind the curtain

I’m so tired of hearing and reading about the Democrat passed “PayGo” legislation this past session.  They trot it out as if it is the long awaited salvation to the spending binge that is Congress.

PayGo (if they actually honored it – and they have suspended the rule numerous times since passing it) is just treading water on a rising tide of red ink.  The financing on those borrowed dollars still has to be paid.  What difference does it make if you’re paying for bloated Budget item X out of Pocket A out of money “saved” because you stopped funding Project Y out of Pocket B.

It’s POINTLESS!  Stop the bloody spending!

My friend Matthias Shapiro who runs the Political Math blog has put together some of the best visuals to show what a farce the budget is.  The ONLY way to address the issue is to cut the “entitlement” spending.

This was his first video and the word iconic certainly fits.

[media id=31 width=320 height=240]

Think about that word.  Entitlement.  Now think about that word in relation to the oft quoted JFK:

And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.

An ironic death threat delivered on Facebook


I was having a nice polite discussion on a friend’s Facebook posting today dealing with the First Amendment.  A guy that used to be a FB friend of mine (and a Fraternity Brother in real life) chimed in that FB was not the place to have political discussions.  I politely pointed out that the posting was on someone else’s wall that obviously believed differently and that he was of course free to not read those posts or comments.

I and the other person carried on with our respectful discussion.  I left my computer to watch a movie with my wife.  After the movie I logged back in and low and behold my old “friend” and posted another comment, rather than ignore us as I had pointed out he was free to do.

In addition to the comment he sent a Message to me.

The night is filled with irony.

1. The movie we were watching? Unthinkable.  It’s about the lengths you would  go to in a “ticking timebomb” scenario if faced with Nuke’s planted in American cities and set to explode in three days.

2. The discussion on the FB Wall was about First Amendment Rights.  One of the points I had made in that discussion was:

“I don’t want ANYONE telling me, you or anyone else who they can associate with or how they can express individually or collectively what they want to say. I want there to be the free flow of ideas. Those I agree with and those I don’t.”

3. The message he sent to me:

“Look Dave. If you keep on posting your ridiculous right wing shit, you’re going to get some lead in your throat. You decide fuckbag.”

Trying to decide if I should contact Facebook and report his abuse (at a minimum) or should I also contact the FBI since he lives in another state and has now made a death threat via electronic means.

I have attached a PDF copy of the original discussion thread as well as a PDF of his death threat directed to me.

Discussion on Joe Barnetts Facebook Wall

Death Threat from Joe Hunt

Once again proves the point that those that scream for tolerance extend none to others that beleieve different from them. Sad that there are people walking around so filled with hate and rage.

Joe is now posting outright threats to put a bullet in my head.  Also love his comment that he just bought an AK-47 on line.  Wonder how Mayor Daley in the fine city of Chicago will appreaciate one of his fine folks exercising his 2nd Amendment Rights to stop someone else from exercising their First Amendment Rights.

Public Threat

Joes Profile

Just sent a note to his place of employment to warn them of their unstable employee.  Will be sending them screen grabs of his postings.  Hope he gets the help he needs before he hurts someone.

Update: Joe basically issued an apology this morning (8/22).  Appreaciate it. 

…I said it and it was absolutely wrong of me. Despite the fact that Dave and I have nothing in common, I’ve always considered him to be an extremely honorable person.

Update: Joe followed up with a more formal apology (8/23).  This one is much appreciated since it was actually addressed to me.

Dear Dave,

I really don’t know the proper way to apologize for the ridiculous things that I wrote to you on Facebook the other night. I have no excuse and you most certainly did not deserve it. I had a really bad weekend, and to make it even worse I had more than a few beers in me. The political stuff on Facebook has always bothered me and I’ve had to get rid of several friends on both sides of the political spectrum because of the incessant cut and paste articles and rants. But that is my problem, not your’s or Joe Barnett’s. I am ashamed of the things I wrote and I am extremely sorry.

For the record, I have never owned a gun nor do I ever intend to. I don’t even think I’ve been in a fist fight since around the 7th grade. The stuff I wrote was simply a bunch of nonsense, but I fully understand the seriousness of making those kinds of threats. I have a family that I love more than anything in the world and if someone made threats to me like that, I know I wouldn’t take it lightly.

I hope you will forgive me.

Sincerely, Joe

Misplaced Compassion or “how to shovel a load of crap”

Over on Religion Dispatches one of the bloggers (a Mormon) that inhabits that space poo-poos Arizona SB1070 bill with their article “Immigration Issue Divides Arizona Mormons” and one of it’s authors, Russell Pearce (also a Mormon), as being the antithesis of what the Mormon Church teaches since the law is “…contradictory to fundamental principles of Christian charity, compassion, tolerance, and kindness.”

On many topics I have issues with Russell Pearce’s tenor and approach to issues but on this subject the “lefties” are shoveling a load of crap.

I posted the following comment to the site:

I live in AZ and unlike MOST people debating this issue I’ve actually read SB1070 as approved by the House, signed by the Governor and then later amended.

However since most of the comments above have ZERO to do with the actual law – which is MORE restrictive on Police and State authorities than Federal law is – and more on about the commentators feelings and their self proclaimed compassion consider this FACT (especially the LDS commentators).  Do you need “papers” to enter the Temple?  Can just anyone enter the Temple?  Of course there will be the ridiculous assumption by the “lefties” that want to think I’m equating the US to the Temple.  Get a clue.  I’m just showing that your arguments that the “Church” should be compassionate are mired in contradictions.  Of course there are rules.  Rules to be followed.  Rules have consequences.

If a person converts to the Church to marry and obtains a Temple recommend for that marriage does the Church say “Hey, that’s cool you can bring your non-member friends and family to the wedding?”  Of course not.

For those that say the Illegal immigrant is “doing a job that American’s won’t do”  consider this.  Maybe the illegal’s presence is causing wages to be artificaly depressed.  If I steal a car can I resell that car for less then what the manufacturer would need to sell it for on the legal market?  Of course.

I personally think that those who put forward the argument about “Doing jobs Americans won’t” are hypocrites.  Why?  Because they are actually in favor of the creation of a second class of human.  One that will merely be a servant by another name since they are working for depressed wages resulting in their living in squalor.  Ever taken a drive through the sections of town where illegals can find rooms they can afford?  I’ll bet not.

I’m in favor of “Higher Fences with Wider gates”.  The current quotas for legal immigration are currently too restrictive.  Well, fixing that issue IS job of the Federal Government as per Congress’s Article 1 powers as those that correctly argue that the States have no ability to control immigration into the US but they are incorrect when they try to argue that the State cannot legislate what happens when the illegal is here.  For example see the 9th Circuit upholding the AZ Employer Sanctions law, etc…

However, we continually see that Politicians always want to take the easy way or the way that will bring them more votes rather then do the hard thing.  For example in the health care legislation they front loaded the “benefits” and put off the taxes to pay for them to another Congress +ten years out.  Why?  So they could say see what I got you (the “benefit”) but they are not doing the hard part of making you pay for them.  We have already been down the road of Border enforcement and Amnesty.  The Politicians did the Amnesty but never got around to the Enforcement.  Therefore we find ourselves facing the same problem yet again becasue the Politicians never fixed the ailment they only treated one of the symptoms.

SB 1070 has a “Get Out of Immigration Trouble Card”

Did you know that the new Arizona Immigration Law has a “Get Out of Immigration Trouble Card” included in it?  Yep.  It is right there in the third paragraph of the Bill.  Unfortunately the opponents of the Bill are to busy criticizing it to bother with reading it (let alone reading the correct version – Hint: It’s the House version and not the first copy that pops up on a Google Search for SB 1070 which is the Senate Version).

For those too busy here is the paragraph that lays it ALL out with the important words highlighted in BOLD.  Section 2, Paragraph B


What does this mean you ask?

The 4th Amendment to the Constitution protects us (and an illegal Immigrant) from “unreasonable search and seizure

unreasonable search and seizure n. search of an individual or his/her premises (including an automobile) and/or seizure of evidence found in such a search by a law enforcement officer without a search warrant and without “probable cause” to believe evidence of a crime is present. Such a search and/or seizure is unconstitutional under the 4th Amendment (applied to the states by the 14th Amendment), and evidence obtained thereby may not be introduced in court

This law allows for a “reasonable suspicion” standard

Reasonable suspicion is a legal standard in United States law that a person has been, is, or is about to be engaged in criminal activity based on specific and articulable facts and inferences. It is the basis for an investigatory or Terry stop by the police and requires less evidence than probable cause, the legal requirement for arrests and warrants. Reasonable suspicion is evaluated using the “reasonable person” or “reasonable officer” standard, in which said person in the same circumstances could reasonably believe a person has been, is, or is about to be, engaged in criminal activity; such suspicion is not a mere hunch. Police may also, based solely on reasonable suspicion of a threat to safety, frisk a suspect for weapons, but not for contraband like drugs. A combination of particular facts, even if each is individually innocuous, can form the basis of reasonable suspicion


In Terry v. Ohio, the Supreme Court ruled that a person can be stopped and frisked by a police officer based on a reasonable suspicion. Such a detention does not violate the Fourth Amendment prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizure. In Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada the court further established that a state may require, by law, that a person identify himself or herself to an officer during a stop. An arrest is not permitted based on reasonable suspicion; probable cause is required for an arrest. Further, a person is not required to answer any other questions during a Terry stop, and the detention must be brief.

But then the law is even further restrictive on the Officer.  The “Reasonable Suspicion” standard established by the Supreme Court already mandated that the time that you are confronted by an Officer must be “brief”.  If you are pulled over by an Officer  for cause (tail light out, speeding, illegal lane change, etc…) and he develops a “Reasonable Suspicion” during his interaction with you “might be illegal” (no drivers license, no insurance, barely speak English, evasive, Van full of people who’s names you as the driver don’t know, etc…) he must make an attempt to determine your immigration status.  However, that is tempered by the very next phrase “WHEN PRACTICABLE”.  If it’s along I-10, I-17, US 60, etc… through the heart of Phoenix at Rush Hour it’s probably not “Practicable” to be spending the amount of time it will take to contact the Feds to determine your Immigration Status.

Some really dishonest opponents say that the Police could pull you over or accost you simply because your Brown and traveling in a group and that therefore you must be illegal’s.  Note the line bolded above that says that race, color, etc… MAY NOT be a reason.

But you say where is this miracle “Get Out of Immigration Trouble Card”.  See the line that says “EXCEPT IF THE DETERMINATION MAY HINDER OR OBSTRUCT AN INVESTIGATION”.  There ya go!  If you are a witness or a victim of a crime the Police are instructed to NOT spend any time examining your immigration status.

The vaunted Community Organizers to the illegal alien population (well, vaunted at least since President Obama rose from their ranks – community organizer that is and not illegal alien.  I, like President Obama was born in Hawaii) should be shouting these facts from the rooftops in their Communities.  If your a victim or a witness help the Police with their investigation and they won’t bother you.

Is it still the 19th Century?

I look at those that want the cheap labor from Mexico as being enablers to the real criminals in the immigration farce.  They are just looking to continue the exploitation of those poor people that their own country with all of it’s tremendous resources – Ports on both the Pacific and Atlantic (by way of the Caribbean), extensive natural resources (oil, agriculture) has abandoned in favor of supporting drug dealers and human smugglers and lining their own corrupt kleptomaniac pockets as they continue to loot that country.

This “cheap” labor is just one more exploration of those poor people since their labor generates Mexico’s second largest source of hard currency when they send their money back to their poor families in that hell hole that Spring breakers go to party in.

There is a huge demand when we are at full employment and then it’s easy to look the other way as those people are exploted for others benefit.

In also allows American business to keep wages artificially low thereby by their use of that illegal labor.

Put that visual in your mind next time you think that Amnesty is about helping those that are down.  Want to help them?  Help them take back their own country so that they can provide for their families without being our indentured servants.

Does the current immigration system need to be fixed.  Sure.  Is opening the borders the answer?  I don’t think so.  We would probably see a number of countries depopulated if we did that.  Currently “legal” immigration allows for almost 1 million per year to obtain residency.

I’m not “opposed” to Amnesty.  I just don’t want to see repeat of 1986 where the weak politicians say amnesty now and will do enforcement later.  The amnesty did happen but as usual the Politicians kicked the can down the road and the enforcement. Well, they never got around to it.

Close the damn door to ILLEGAL immigration, liberalize the immigration quotas and THEN we can talk about Amnesty.  I was at a clients office today.  He is a very prominent Immigration Attorney here in Phoenix.  While he is decidedly not happy about 1070 he did say it will do what it’s drafters intended.  Attrition Through Enforcement.  That concept will result in there needing to be few amnesties handed out.

Arizona has already seen a huge decline in the illegal population to do the stepped up immigration sweeps and the downturn in the economy.  Many have returned to Mexico as well as moved to other surrounding states.

The idea of the “white mans burden” is so 19th Century.  I guess the Democrats are still pursuing their goal of Manifest Destiny.  Last seen when that party was pursuing a war with what Country?  Oh that’s right Mexico.

The more things change…

My take on SB1070

Since useless Washington Politians WON’T even begin to address the issues and costs borne by Arizona tax payers due to their inaction AND the fact that some Cities in Arizona have turned a blind eye to illegal immigrants estabilishing defacto “sancturay cities” the State was left with the option of picking up that slack.
I would like to see a Guest Worker program.  But one not suseptible to the problems of the old Bracero system that resulted in abuses of those migrant workers.  A functioning guest worker program would provide jobs for migrant workers that “Americans” won’t do but would still allow for those workers to freely move back and forth across the border so that they don’t feel forced to smuggle themselves and their familes across.
It would also reduce the business model for the Coyotes who kidnap, rape and really abuse the illiegal immigrant.
Washington Pols have wanted to do the same thing they did in 1986.  That is, provide Amnesty to those here now with some nebulus promise of border enforcement later.  Problem is that while later comes the enforcement never follows.  This is the standrd MO for a politian.  Do the easy thing today and promise to do the heavy lifiting later.  Sorry, I’m not buying that soap.
Those Pols don’t want to fix the problem because the illegal working on someone elses SSN (resturant, farm, construction, etc…) is paying into the SSN system through withhldings but will never collect.  It’s found money for Washington.
Attrition through enforcement does work.  Dry up the jobs and the illegals leave.  We are seeing that here in the state right now through the downturn in the ecomomy.
Mexico is pissed because the export of their underclass to work here in the US is the second largest source of revenue to the country (behind Oil) and it means that Mexico does not have to produce jobs for them.
I’m no fan of either JD Hayworth or Russell Pearce.  I also can’t stand John McCain.  But to say that this new law is all about racial profiling is just wrong.  For the Police to ask about your immigration status they have to have a reasonable suspicion.  Just seeing someone walking down the street while being “brown” is not reasonable.  Today if an illegal is picked up the Police can’t ask.  So they cite and release.  The illegal of course never shows up in court.  Being able to ask – if they have a reasonable suspicion would allow them to now detain and hand the illegal over to ICE.
Here is an old article from the Center for Immigrant Studies that outlines how Attrition through enforcement works.
I’ve worked overseas on a visa so I know what it means to have gone through the proper channels to work in a country legally – even if some of the things I was doing was illegal.  A proper functioning system would also help address the issues expressed by those native born Americans of Hispanic background who say they will be “profiled”

Who’s Captive to the Insurers?

Let me get this straight:

Which side wanted to try to LOWER cost by eliminating the antitrust excemption that protects Health Insurers from competition?  Rep

Which side wanted to FORCE every person in the country to have to buy insurance from the Health Insurers thereby bring MORE business to those same Health Insurers? Dem

With the passage last night of Obamacare I’m reading this morning that the Dems are going to try to push back against the Reps between now and November with the claim that it’s the Reps that are in the pocket of the Health Insurers when the Reps try to slow/repeal/change the Legislation.  Sorry that dog don’t hunt.

Competetition is what drives down cost.  Not forced purchasing.  You don’t see Health Insurers advertising on TV because they have no need to.  They get an employer to offer their service to their employees and the employee has the option – once a year – of signing up.  Once signed up the employee is trapped with that insurer and that employer because the insurance is “owned” by the employer and there is always the threat of an illness, etc… making it difficult or impossible to get coverage with another insurer due to a “pre-existing condition.  This makes the employee little more that an indenturered slave to both the employer and the insurer.  The Dem’s legislation only solves one aspect of this but does so only through force.

Here is a better solution.

1. Eliminate the anti-trust excemption to open the Health Insurance market to competition.  In some states (like Alabama) this ban on competition has led to a single company (Blue Cross) controlling 91% of the market!  That is not competition that is monoploy.

2. Eliminate the minimum required policy options.  The other side likes to make the bogus comparison of the  (state) requirement to have car insurance as why the (fed’s) will make you get Health Insurnance.  For the sake of argument let’s say fine, you have to have Health Insurance.  What’s different?  With car insurance I can buy buy either a liability policy or a comprehensive policy.  Additionaly I can add various riders to the policy as a need (glass, towing, etc…)  With Health Insurance no such luck.  The Fed are making me buy a comprehensive policy.  I would rather have an Insurer offer me a low cost no frills high deductiable catestrophic policy coupled to a tax exempt HSA.

(Indiana is doing this to great effect: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704231304575091600470293066.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEFTTopOpinion)

This would allow me to use buy a policy to protect me if things really got bad while setting aside pre-tax dollars to cover the basic lower dollar cost things like wellness visits and checkups.  At the end of the year if I have money left in my HSA account I can use that money for whatever I want.  Leave it in the HSA, use it to pay the premimum on my catestrophic policy or spend it on a new flat screen TV.  What ever.  I don’t even have a problem on having to pay tax on that money if I pull it out of the HSA to spend on something not health related.  However, if an elective health procedure like an abortion or botox is allowed I think I could make the argument that a flat screen TV would be good for both my eyes and my mental health 🙂

If a private individual is able to purchace their own health care with pretax dollars like a business can you break the indenturered servitude between the employee and the employer.  If the employee now has no obsticle to changing jobs and since it is their own policy and not the employers policy the policy is portable.  That helps address the issue of pre-existing conditions.

Plus, if the policy was owned by the Individual and not business the health insurers woudl be having to advertise just like the car insureres do.  You can’t go an hour without seeing Geico, Progressive, State Farm, Allstate, General, etc… trying to get your business by talkiing about how much money that can save you if you give them your business.  They offer you additional discounts if you expand your relationship with them. Car, House, Property, etc…  If competition was allowed in the Health insurance market we would soon see those same broad base insurnace companies offering health policies to compete against the verticle market insurers like  Blue Cross, Humana, etc…  Because you could carry multiple policies with them you are spreading the risk which helps bring down the cost too since they would offer discounts if you added a health insurnace policy to go along with your car, boat, house, etc…

Competition is the key.  Not force.

“Deeming” a bill passed is Unconstitutional

If Nancy, Harry and Obama try to jump over the “Health Care Reform” net by having the House vote on some language to modify the Senates version of the bill while “deeming” to pass it without actually voting on that same Senate bill there will be a lawsuit.  Nancy and Co. will lose that suit on Presentment Clause grounds.

The deliciousness of them losing will be flavored by the fact that a recent and unanimous Supreme Court ruling established this precedent with the most liberal Justice of the Court (Stevens) writing the opinion in Clinton v. City of New York.

“…The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 is a 500-page document that became “Public Law 105—33” after three procedural steps were taken: (1) a bill containing its exact text was approved by a majority of the Members of the House of Representatives; (2) the Senate approved precisely the same text; and (3) that text was signed into law by the President. The Constitution explicitly requires that each of those three steps be taken before a bill may “become a law.”…”

Justice Stevens wrote the opinion and was joined by Rehnquist, Kennedy, Souter, Thomas, and Ginsburg
Scalia wrote a separate opinion that agreed with Part III and he was joined in that opinion by O’Connor and Breyer
Breyer did write a separate dissent to the case however but not in disagreement to Part III

That means on the critical aspect of the case – the steps required for a bill to become law – the Court spoke with one voice.

Real “Meaningful” Reform

Until these four options are tried/included in any “reform” of the US Health care “payment system” then any such reform is really a sop for special interest.

An comment exchange on FB re: Health care reform prompted me to make this post

Want to bring down Insurance premiums and see Insurance companies respond to the marketplace?

1. Allow selling across state lines.
This will open up real competition. How many ads to you see on TV for Health Insurance?  ZERO.  How many ads do you see in a single hour on TV for Car insurance?  To many to count.  This allows for the creation of a national-wide pool of individuals (and even businesses) and brings competition for those new customers to the Insurance market.

2. Ban Insurance enrollment periods… unless the annual enrollment includes a discount.
If you can change Health Insurance companies at will any time you want they will be forced to treat their customers better or risk losing them to competitors. The “Open Enrollment” period just allows them to lock you in.

3. Encourge people to obtain high deductable catastrophic coverage and pay for routine Dr checkups etc.. out of pocket.
That’s what I do now. Had a son break a bone in his foot. Trip to the ER with x-rays and a walking cast only cost $350 when paying cash. If it had been billed through insurance it would have been thousands. The financial clerk did not know what to do when I said I was paying cash.
This will also bring down cost as a National policy of allowing the selling across statelines would usurp (and actually be in line with the purpose of the Commerce clause) the hodgepodge of protected State run Monopolies on Health Insurance through the +50 different regulations by allowing you to actually build a policy of what you want to have covered.
For example: if your local Cable/Dish company allowed you to just subscribe to the Channels you wanted to get you would have fewer to have to wade through (that you are paying for but not watching). Your bill would then be lower or the Company would be offering steep discounts on the addtional channels to get your to take them too.  This same logic would help lower Health Costs.

4. Allow individuals the same tax breaks for buying insurnace on their own as that enjoyed by businesses buying for employees.
That way your insurance is YOURS not merely a “benefit” to keep you endentued at a job.

These are just a few common sense solutions to say nothing of Tort reform, etc… Of course the corrupt Pols won’t do any of those simple fixes.

Let’s try to lower costs before adding more Government layers of control which only increase cost.

Who are they kidding?

I am sick of hearing all this talk about the Senate pushing for “reconciliation” of their bill.

Take a minute for some elementary school level understanding of how the political process works.


  1. The House passes a bill
  2. The Senate passes a bill
  3. If the bills are different they have a conference to iron out the differences then…
  4. Each Chamber again votes on the new language
  5. If the Legislation passes both Chambers it goes to the President for his signature

Now let’s look at how this plays with ObamaCare 

  1. The House passed a bill
  2. The Senate passed a bill
  3. They are NOT having a conference to iron out the differences
  4. They are telling the House to pass the Senate’s bill and THEN Reid and Pelosi say they will
  5. Remove the items the House does not like (Cornhusker kickback, etc…) and put in things they do want (no funding of abortion language, etc…) from the bill they just passed and the Senate will then vote again on this “reconciled” bill.  Presupposing that the Senate Parliamentarian allows these changes as part of this reconciliation.
  6. Then the House would have to vote again on this new Senate bill to replace the bill they just voted for.

Here is what I predict will happen IF the House does indeed pass the Senate’s rushed through bill from December.

There will be too many items that the Parliamentarian will rule impermissible for budget reconciliation and the Senate will be unable to then actually pass a “reconciliation” bill that could also pass in the House.  Then Nancy, Harry and Barack will say well we tried and just could not iron out the differences and it’s all the Republicans fault.  Therefore, Barack will “reluctantly” sign the House approved Senate bill because they “have” to pass something.

Liberal mindset is so twisted

Read this article on RCP this morning.


The comments were the best part (click the link to comments at the bottom of the article) .  The third one summed it up nicely:

Good illustration of the emotion-based thinking of the liberal mind. Not to mention the female cattiness. Sorry Jill, if you think like a highschool girl and vote like one, this is what you get. Apology not accepted.


Senator Roland Burris (D-IL) and I probably could not agree on the time of day.  But we both agree with Ghandi.

With a dramatic flourish, Mr. Burris said: “As Mohandas Gandhi once famously said, ‘All compromise is based on give and take, but there can be no give and take on fundamentals. Any compromise on mere fundamentals is a surrender.’”

For different reason we could both be saying. “Kill the Bill”.

Pulp Western as Power Politics primer

In a PoliSci class I took my Freshman Year at BYU the Professor had the Louis L’Amour book “The Empty Land” on the assigned reading list.  We all thought that was odd.  Why would we be reading a pulp Western?

Well this morning as I was browsing the various news sites that I check I came across this article in Der Speigel which if you’ve read the “Empty Land” you completely understand. (In case the artricle no longer exists I grabbed a PDF copy: Der Spiegel-Obama-PowerPolitics

L’Amour may have used the renegade Frontier American West as a backdrop but the story is a primer on the use of Power Politics and how being a nice guy (the title of the Der Spiegel article is “Obama’s Nice Guy Act Gets Him Nowhere on the World Stage”) in the face of  of others self interest will get you no where.

Political Math does a MMA-type take down on Paul Krugman

One of my favorite bloggers rips apart Paul Krugman’s nonsense defending the Obama budget busters


Key graphs…

“…If you look at the 1945 budget with the single question �How are we going to reduce our debt?� you can identify the major problem. It�s the defense budget, which is almost 90% of the budget. Interestingly, reducing the defense budget is exactly what we did in order to reduce the debt, cutting it over 80% in 3 years (it helped that we won the war).

As a contrast, President Obama�s solution to reducing overall spending is� well, I don�t think he really has a plan. His projected budget in 2016 has reduced the defense budget as a percentage of the overall budget from 20% to 14%, but military spending isn�t what is killing us. The president has no plans to reduce mandatory spending whatsoever. In fact, his only change to entitlement spending is to increase it…

…(By the way� if you would like to blame the debt load on the Iraq war, you should know that those costs have raised our debt by 5% of the GDP. Comparing this to WWII, which raised our debt by 70% of the GDP, is a pretty weak argument.)”

Political Math could also has discussed how the US Industrial base was intact and functioning compared to the most of the rest of the World.  We could make things and sell them to ourselves (pent up demand from the Depression and WWII) as well as the rest of the rebuilding world.