Tuesday, January 13, 2004
He Who Hesitates is Lost
The title to this post is something my dad used to say to me, probably most often when confronting a yellow light. The statement, an evidently unattributable folk wisdom, came to mind when I read this post at Marginal Revolution. The post, written by Tyler Cowen, looks at new research that seems to suggest that undue caution can actually kill you. The condition is called neophobia and Cowen located the article at Slate.
Tell Me Again Why the State Should Have Any Say
Emperor Darth Misha I, at The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweilor, eviscerates, rightfully, the state of Indiana’s child protective services, which, in their supposed infinite wisdom, took a four year old from a loving foster home and placed the four year old in a not so foster loving home. How not so loving? So not loving that the new guardians starved and beat the four year old to death over a ten month period. Misha’s evisceration of this madness. Of course, no disciplinary action is being considered for the case worker, Denise Moore, because, well because the state of Indiana says it is none of our business. Of course, according to Cheryl Sullivan, secretary of the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration, the administration is the real victim.
Misha has the links to the articles which review this travesty.
Existing For Their Own Sake, Evidently
University of Melbourne physicists have discovered a new state of matter, according to this article in Science Daily. The physicists “believe,” according to the article, the sub-atomic particle could be a meson. One of the members of the team that is delving into this mystery, a doctoral student named Craig Everton, states this about the meson.
Mesons have little direct bearing on life itself. They exist because they can,...
A statement which is very similar to this statement about lichens, uttered by David Attenborough.
They simply exist, testifying to the fact that life even at its simplest level occurs, apparently, just for its own sake.
Attenborough quote taken from Bill Bryson’s book A Short History of Nearly Everything, pg. 336.
Science Daily link via J. Orlin Grabbe.
First the government sued big tobacco, under the guise of altruism of course, since they promised to use the settlement monies to help smokers quit, run more anti-smoking campaigns and what not. Though I think the real reason was because the government figured that this would be a nice way to pad their tax receipts from tobacco.
Today I read that the government is now working with big tobacco to sue little tobacco. Meaning, small, independent cigarette makers, who came in and filled a niche that big tobacco left void, are now being sued by the government and big tobacco because, well, because little tobacco is successful and making some serious money.
Via Skip Oliva at The Rule of Reason.
Monday, January 12, 2004
Getting to Know Hayek
Virginia Postrel has an article published in the Boston Globe on Friedrich Hayek. The piece is titled Friedrich the Great. If you are unaware of Hayek, or have a limited knowledge of Hayek, like myself, the piece will fill in some gaps. Another man’s ideas I must find time to explore more indepth.
Via Greg Ransom at PrestoPundit.
Be Free - Assert Your Individual Sovereignty
The online magazine Liberty For All posts a piece titled Republic or Democracy that is worth taking a moment or two to read. From the article, a portion discussing sovereignty.
Why the emphasis on the “sovereignty” or the people each being sovereign to each other and any political creations of the People. Sovereign means the “supreme or highest authority,” and this places all men/women above the orders of governments and other artificial (man made) creations.
Also, from within the article, a quote from Thomas Jefferson.
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add ‘within the limits of the law,’ because law is often but the tyrant’s will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.
This Little Piggy Went to Market
Richard Nikoley, posting at Uncommon Sense, pens a piece titled The Market vs. God. Richard discusses government intervention in the market, the power of the market, efficiency of the market and God and the market.
Sunday, January 11, 2004
How many wars is the U.S. currently fighting?
War on Drugs.” Ongoing.
War on Smoking. Ongoing.
War on Obesity Ongoing.
War on Poverty Ongoing.
Emissions War. Ongoing.
War on Illiteracy Ongoing.
War on Terrorism. Ongoing.
War Against Disabled Veterans. Ongoing.
The AIDS War. Ongoing.
The War on Cancer. Ongoing.
Culture War. Ongoing.
I’m sure there are many others. I’m stopping here.
If I Build a Cabin, Will I Still be Able to Chink the Logs?
I used to live outside Philly, in Havertown, PA to be exact, but I don’t recall the restaurant “Chink’s Steaks.” If Susannah Park has her way, in five years or so no one will recall that there was once a Chink’s Steaks. You see, Ms. Park is offended that there is a restaurant named Chink’s Steaks. Nevermind that the restaurant has been in Philly since 1949 and was founded by Samuel “Chink” Sherman, who has since passed away. And probably a good thing too since Ms. Park would, in all likelihood, pitch a fit because Samuel’s nickname is Chink.
I could go for a good Philly cheesesteak right about now, and if I was in Philly, I’d head to Chink’s.
It’s All About the Power and Prestige, Not Faith
Why, one might ask, should Italy hope for an Italian pope, given the almost universal praise for the pontificate of Karol Wojtyla?,
asked by Roberto Pazzi in a New York Times op-ed entitled Why the Next Pope Needs to Be Italian.
The short answer, according to Pazzi.
The origins of this question go back in time and deserve examination. I was watching on that unforgettable Roman evening of Oct. 16, 1978, when, on the state television network, RAI, which was still broadcasting in black and white, the newly elected pope appeared: a foreigner, Polish. I confess that, once I’d got over my surprise, like many of my fellow Italians I felt a certain bitterness, because my country had lost its last universal sign of power.
Read that last sentence again. It is bemoaning a loss of “power,” even if it is simply a “universal sign of power.” Pazzi isn’t hoping for an Italian pope to benefit the salvation of his fellow Catholics, he is hoping for an Italian pope to wield power.
Think about that.
Saturday, January 10, 2004
“The False Idol of Equality”
Clearly, then, the concept of equality is only tangentially related to the prosperity or well-being, let alone the freedom, of those who fall under its scope. It concerns itself only with the sameness or equivalence between people, and only a jealous soul could hope for that.
Mars or Bust
Bush has proposed getting men to Mars and a permanent base on the moon. Lovely idea, by why should the cost burden of such an endeavor be borne by individuals living in America through taxation? If there is such an overwhelming desire to settle the moon, or get men to Mars, the cost of such an endeavor should be borne by the private sector. I tend to agree with the following statement, by Bruce Sterling, posted at Hit & Run.
I’ll believe in people settling Mars at about the same time I see people settling the Gobi Desert. The Gobi Desert is about a thousand times as hospitable as Mars and five hundred times cheaper and easier to reach. Nobody ever writes “Gobi Desert Opera” because, well, it’s just kind of plonkingly obvious that there’s no good reason to go there and live. It’s ugly, it’s inhospitable and there’s no way to make it pay. Mars is just the same, really. We just romanticize it because it’s so hard to reach.
On the other hand, there might really be some way to make living in the Gobi Desert pay. And if that were the case, and you really had communities making a nice cheerful go of daily life on arid, freezing, barren rock and sand, then a cultural transfer to Mars might make a certain sense.
Whether it be the Gobi Desert, the moon, or Mars, private enterprise should fund exploration and/or settlement, not government.
Friday, January 09, 2004
I Thought Canada Was “Progressive” on Sexuality
Daniel Medley says this,
Two 12 year old Canadian girls have been expelled from school for a blatant act of capitalism.
Two Grade 7 girls were encouraged to leave their school after they were caught in a public make out session in the school cafeteria.
The 12-year-olds charged boys $5 to watch the lunch-hour show late last year.
which was reported here.
Colby, can you verify this?
Republicans Still Selling “Honorifics for Dollars”
Back on November 3rd, 2003, at my old Blogger site, I posted Honorifics for Dollars. In the post, I wrote of one of the ploys the Republican party is using to raise cash. Specifically, I had received notification that I had been selected as a “honorary chairman” for the Business Advisory Council, and, if I would just contribute five hundred dollars or so, I could have my name published in the Wall Street Journal, with other illuminaries. For the details on this, click the link.
Interestingly, I just received another call from DeLay’s call center, which I can just about picture in my mind as a bunch of drones with headsets on hoping to score the “big one,” informing me that I am still being considered as a honorary chairman of previously mentioned council, and, that I would be receiving an invite to DC for a March meeting on business taxes, so could I contribute five hundred dollars. I said no. How about two hundred dollars, the caller asked. I said no. How about one hundred dollars? I said no.
What is up with this? I don’t contribute to any political party, and, I have also given up on voting. I wonder how far it will go?
Senate Resolution 1993
Eric Peters, writing in The American Spectator, brings to our attention Hillary Clinton’s latest atrocity, co-sponsored by John Warner, Senate Resolution 1993. Peters’ piece, entitled Buckle Up for Hillary, bitch slaps Hillary and Warner for attempting to constrict your personal responsibility with “primary enforcement,” nationally, regarding seatbelt use. From Peters’ article.
Hillary Clinton wants you to buckle up for safety—and she’s ready to crack her whip to make sure that you do. Along with co-sponsoring Virginia Republican Sen. John Warner, Sen. Clinton is pushing strong-arm federal legislation, Senate Resolution 1993, that would all but require every state in the country to pass “primary enforcement” seat belt laws.
Primary enforcement means the police can screech out of alleyways, turn on their sirens and pull you over, hands on their guns, spotlight in your face—simply for failing to wear your seat belt. (Primary enforcement also gives police officers legal pretext to demand that you produce ID, answer questions—and enables them to give you and your vehicle a thorough “once over”—again, solely for failing to buckle up.)
Yep, this is the land of the free and home of the brave.
Via Gene Healy at Liberty & Power: Group Blog.