Saturday, June 11, 2011

Go plank yourself.

You know I've been blogging almost as long as and it's gotten me nowhere. Not that I really want that kind of attention, because I often reread my posts and find egregious typos and grammatical errors. But it's nice to know that has opening for new bloggers.
We have a plan to make sure that the truth gets out online, but we need smart people to help us make it happen. The effort is led by former senior staff at MoveOn and The Onion; by coming in on the ground floor, you can also help shape it from the beginning.
The problem I would have with this is that their idea of truth would vary from mine and I think it's already getting out quite well, except for the medias' Ancien RĂ©gime and their goal seems to be to shout it down.

Besides, you'll note nothing is said about payment. Ariana Huffington has already pulled that one.

Steven F. Hayward commented here and here critiquing Mitt Romney's statements on global warming and energy efficiency. He makes a good case that Americans needed feel like the energy hogs of the world, but if the main goal is to achieve energy independence, more efficiency in our use of energy would seem to be one of the easier things we can do.

Romney spent his LDS mission in France. I spent mine in Germany, and he must know that those nations can be more efficient in transportation because their populations are more dense and public transit can be provided more efficiently. I never needed a car because we could either ride bicycles or take street cars to anywhere we needed to go.

Hayward quotes Romney, "We could do a lot better. I'd like to see our vehicles, and our homes, and our systems of insulation and so forth become far more efficient. I believe that we have a role in trying to encourage that to happen." I don't get the feeling that Romney favors a tough top-down control model. Certainly, that is the opposite of his views on health care. "Trying to encourage" things through market principles is more his style.

Friday, June 10, 2011

What the . . . ?

What are they thinking? Major media outlets are asking readers to help them go through Sarah Palin's official emails during her term as the governor. What are the instructions? What are readers supposed to report? I guess we'll know it when we see it.

The most sinister thing from the standpoint of the media is that many of them were redacted, i.e. parts blacked out.

I picture the boy who receives a huge box of manure for Christmas sifting through it gleefully and saying "There's a pony in here somewhere!"

Or the New York Times with a masthead reading "Pequod".

Ed Morrissey has been writing some interesting comments on problems at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission where, quelle surprise, politics have raised barriers to activated a national nuclear waste repository and reprocessing facility in Nevada. I've never thought that it would be a significant danger, but people are frightened irrationally but anything involving the word "nuclear," despite nuclear generation and nuclear medicine. I'm not particularly well informed about nuclear physics, but I do know that there's no reason for the fear. If France can do it, why can't we?

Beauty and creativity in unexpected forms.

Peggy Noonan says that Mitt Romney had a good week. Largely because the field has narrowed and he stood out in the ABC/Washington Post poll as the only Republican polling ahead of Barack Obama. She analyzes his negatives, but leaves you with the feeling that he may be "a sound choice."
His seamless happiness can be grating. People like to root for the little guy, and he's never been the little guy. His family has never in his lifetime known financial ill fortune, and his personal wealth is of the self-made kind, the most grating because it means you can't even patronize him. He has in him that way of people who are chipper about each day in large part because each day has been very nice to them. This makes some people want to punch him in the nose. I said once he's like an account executive on "Mad Men," stepping from the shower and asking George the valet to bring him the blue shirt with the white collar. But this year he looks slightly older, maybe wiser, maybe a little more frayed than in 2008. Which is good. Since 2008 everyone else is more frayed, too.. . .

The common wisdom has been that health care is the huge weak spot in his candidacy. Maybe, but maybe not. The base hates ObamaCare, as we know, and Mr. Romney devised a similar plan as governor of Massachusetts. But he can talk earnestly about it on the hustings until voters' eyes glaze over and they plead to change the subject, which he will. And there are a lot of other subjects. If he gets through the primaries, his position on health care will become a plus: The Democrats this year will try to paint the Republican candidate as radical on health spending. It would be harder to do that to Mr. Romney.

Has enough time passed since his famous flip-flops on issues like abortion to make them old news? Four years ago it colored his candidacy. We'll find out if people decide it's yesterday's story, and give him a second look.

The real problem for Romney is: Does he mean it? Is he serious when he takes a stand? Has he thought it through or merely adopted it? And there is of course religion. In a silly and baiting interview with Piers Morgan on CNN, Mr. Romney swatted away an insistence that he delve into Mormonism and, by implication, defend it. It was like seeing some Brit in 1960 trying to make John F. Kennedy explain and defend Catholicism. It's not something we do in America. Because we still have a little class.
My impression of my fellow Mormon, who attended BYU a few years ahead of me, is that he has made the decision to be true to himself and state his true opinions, whether conservatives like them all or not. I could feel the difference in his speech about the Massachusetts health care bill he designed. In fairness, many other conservatives thought an individual mandate was pretty attractive, but he was the only one who went through with it.

What is it we hate about Obamacare? First, it's a wholesale imposition of federal government. Second, it raises the tab we pay for government and adds new bureaucracy. Third, it was passed practically in the dark with no chance to debate it or even read it. None of those things applied in Massachusetts. Now we hear that it will result not in being able to keep our current plans, but probably will result in a federal single payer system where the feds become the insurer or HMO. Who wouldn't love that? Also not in Massachusetts.

The common thing between Obamacare and Romney care is the mandate to buy health insurance, which nobody likes. But the government is now arguing that it's not a mandate outside of the commerce clause, but a tax which is allowed, whether one likes it or not, by federal jurisprudence. The reason for the mandate is to keep people without insurance showing up for expensive care and leaving the doctors and hospitals holding the bag. There has to be some answer for that.

Listening to David Mamet on Hugh Hewitt's show about his new book The Secret Knowledge, I searched the internet for commentary about this assault on the liberal establishment and the flaws in thinking, I found this non-review by Justin Moyer which summarily dismisses the book as "a political screed," and with the sarcastic headline "We read so you don't have to." Moyer is a critic for the Post and the Washington City Paper, and a performer in drag in a band called "Edie Sedgewick," and his review resembles a truculent essay by a student who doesn't like the assigned topic. He obviously has insulated himself from considering the points made in the book and so he summarizes it at arm's length as if it were radioactive.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

The economy is worse than you think, and worse than Obama wants you to think.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Jim Treacher is right.

Barbara Walter is a crazy old bat.

Obamacare is worse than expected. HHS never had power to grant waivers.


Chilean Volcano Erupts