Monday, June 28, 2010

Cruising the Web

California Democrats are worried that their guy, Jerry Brown, might just not be up to the task of taking on Meg Whitman and all her millions. How about worrying that they've nominated a retread from three decades ago to take on the calamity that they themselves have created.

Meanwhile, back in the states, liberal efforts to bypass the Electoral College are gaining momentum.

Jason Rantz lists
his choices for the eight most irritating liberal celebrities. All annoying people, but I can't rank Roger Ebert up there. His diatribes appear mostly on Twitter. If you don't like him, don't read his tweets.

The Democrats' blatant effort to stifle political speech that they don't agree with, while giving exemptions to groups that support them such as the labor unions demonstrates once again the wisdom of the founders in guaranteeing freedom of speech, particularly for political speech. You can't trust politicians when they get a majority to decide who should be able to speak and who shouldn't.

Jay Ambrose contrasts Bobby Jindal's leadership
in the Gulf oil spill and Barack Obama's. Now admittedly, a governor has a different role than a president does. But just picture if the roles were reversed. Can you imagine Bobby Jindal displaying the type of disengaged posture that Obama has taken and just jetting in for a some photo ops and a speech or two while letting his appointees on the ground muddle through? I just can't picture Jindal acting that way. That wasn't how he acted when Katrina hit his district when he was a congressman. He was the one politician who came out of Katrina with strengthened public confidence. And conversely, can you imagine Barack Obama as a governor being down there every day coming up with ideas and holding daily press conferences? Perhaps he would, but he's never displayed that sort of energy and dedication before unless you count the energy and dedication he put into running for president.

Jonah Goldberg examines how much better and cheaper things have become over the past fifty years. We can buy a whole lot of really cool stuff today that is much better than the stuff we could buy earlier. And we can get it cheaper. But some sectors of the economy have gotten more expensive: housing, cars, higher education, and medical care. And what do they have in common? The government's interference in the market place. Coincidence?

Ed Morrissey has posted a very funny caption contest. See what you have to contribute.

Moe Lane marvels
that Kevin Costner's investment in spill clean up technology seems to work. Unfortunately, government once again has gotten in the way.

This is just peachy. The Obama administration has picked someone who has been quite vocal in his criticism of immigration enforcement done on the local level to coordinate between the federal and local officials on their enforcement efforts. Yeah, that's going to work.

Michael Kinsley is quite funny as he ridicules CNN's efforts to create a Crossfire-type show without calling it Crossfire and with hiring two people, Eliot Spitzer and Kathleen Parker, who seem to agree with each other more often than not. Ya think he's a bit bitter over CNN President's sanctimonious breast-beating over canning the show he helped inaugurate after Jon Stewart made fun of it? I usually don't enjoy these sorts of partisan shoutfests, but Kinsley was the best guy on the left that Crossfire had.

Mona Charen decries
the sexual double standard on how Peter Orszag's complicated sex life has been regarded and how it would be regarded if he were a woman.


Rick Caird said...

The liberal agreement to attempt to elect the winner of the popular vote the winner of the electoral vote will not work the way the backers hope.

First, there is no honor among thieves. But, this law depends on that honor. For example, say we have another Bush - Gore election and it come down a state, Florida, which has voted for a different guy that the national vote winner. Further, suppose the legislature and the governor are of the same party as the states winner. Even now, we see furious attempts to change the vote of pledged electors in a close election. How will that work out in the case of a state like Florida with 27 electoral votes which, just by honoring the choice of its states voters, can change the election.

There is just no way this nutty compact can hold. Someone will soon be sorely disappointed if they think this is any kind of an agreement.

Just for fun, which way would a guy like Stupak vote if it came down to his decision? Would he honor the agreement to vote for the vote leader, or would he honor Pelosi? How many Stupak's would we have?

Never.Gonna.Work. Even if they do get it nominally passed.

tfhr said...

Regarding the article on bypassing the Electoral College:

The money quote is, "One fundamental flaw is NPV’s refusal to seek change through a constitutional amendment".

National Popular Vote, the California-based organization behind this effort is attempting to subvert The Constitution.

Agree or disagree with the merits of the process designed by the Founding Fathers, ANY attempt at redress must come by way of a Constitutional Convention.

Rick Caird said...


That is because the NPV legislation is non enforceable. If a state refuses to honor its agreement, who are they going to turn to? SCOTUS? They would be laughed out of court.

tfhr said...

The Goldberg article is excellent. I've often felt the same way and share a similar experience as
Rep. Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) regarding his Lasik eye surgery in 2000.

Goldberg adds that Ryan paid cash, ($2,000 an eye) and follows with a WaPo quote of Ryan saying,“Since then,’s been revolutionized three times and now costs $800 an eye. This sector isn’t immune from free-market principles.”

My vision was once 20-400. Yes, that's why I went for tanks because I was lucky to even get a ride on a helicopter with those eyes. After wearing soft contacts for more than 18 year, the doctors told me I would have to stop wearing any type of contacts due to capillary infiltration, a serious threat to the health of my eyes. It forced my hand to seek corrective surgery but RK was worthless to and Lasik was not yet available anywhere in the United States with the exception of a few government studies being conducted.

Fortunately I was living in Panama at the time and the very latest German equipment was being used to great satisfaction of the patients of two American-trained Panamanian ophthalmologists. These two doctors had done thousands of surgeries, including the eyes of Panama's current president.

I talked to an old college roommate who is an eye doctor and he gave me a list of questions to ask the Panamanian doctors and also gave me his opinion that countries like Germany and Colombia were years ahead with Lasik because they did not have to deal with FDA impediments as well as other US Government bureaucratic interference.

Got my Lasik done in Panama for $1000 - both eyes - in 1996 and enjoy 20-15 vision today. The impact of government bureaucracy on health care can be blinding at times, particularly for those that refuse to open their eyes to it.

Skay said...

Another difference between Obama and Jindal--

Jindal loves this country.

Rick Caird said...


That is a good anecdote. We have a number of built in costs on our health care system that do little or no good. The FDA is major hinderence. If jumping through all the FDA hoops provided some legal protection to the companies, the FDA would have some merit. But, as it stands companies do whatever they have to do to get past the FDA, but they are fully liable anyway.

Your experience brings me back to wondering why the FDA has an authority over medical devices anyway. They define the category very broadly. The FDA is a very expensive, feel good, department that, like a vampire, can never die.

tfhr said...

Rick Caird,

The FDA, like many agencies and organizations within the Federal Government, start with a valid mission and do perform some good but over time they expand well beyond their original intended purpose. Bloated bureaucracies are too big to be agile enough to respond to fast moving advances in technology, to serve the needs of people outside the Beltway, and eventually become most adept at preserving their own existence and ever growing budgets.

Throw that in with our litigious culture and the end result is, well, what we have today. Your vampire analogy is too true. While I'm thinking of that I have to wonder why the networks, which each seem to have at least one vampire-themed TV show and one show based on lawyers, has not taken the next step: Vampire Lawyers!

I guess even the networks know when to stop though CSPAN still draws an audience in this town.