March 31, 2008

Sure, If You Ignore Inflation

Can America ever break its addiction to oil statistics that are worse than meaningless when taken out of context?

The U.S. retail price for gasoline set a new high of $3.29 a gallon after rising 3.1 cents over the last week, the federal Energy Information Administration said on Monday.

Maybe we should eliminate the Energy Information Administration and use the money we save to drill for oil in ANWR.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:33 PM | Comments (0)

Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

Some Truckers Plan Strike Over Diesel Costs

The funny thing is nothing will reduce prices quite like a drop in demand.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:29 PM | Comments (0)

Babble On, Sister

More precious pretensions, purple prose™ as Alice Walker writes on ..., wait for it ..., Obama:

On any given day we, collectively, become the goddess of the three directions and can look back into the past, look at ourselves just where we are, and take a glance, as well, into the future.

This is the second sentence of her paean to the Senator Obama.

By the way, this my official entry into the Steely Dan lyric competition. I patiently await the Instalanche. Note, rejected alternate titles included "I Wanna Be Your Holy Man." That ought to answer this.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:16 PM | Comments (0)

Big Click

Meanwhile, in other eco-friendly public relations corporate news, Sergey Brin and Larry Page do not sell their personal Boeing 767:

Google steps up eco-activism, will help flood Capitol switchboard

Because the only thing that says "I care" more than a computer generated phone call is a million computer generated phone calls.

Maybe I should file this as yet another argument for limited government.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:35 PM | Comments (0)

Attention K-Mart Shoppers

Blue state light in aisle three:

50 Cent Flip-Flops: From Hillary To Obama To 'Don't Know'

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:22 PM | Comments (0)

Mr. Cub

About time:


Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks, stands in front of the statue that commemorates his career that was highlighted by two MVP awards, 14 All-Star appearances and a bust in the Hall of Fame.

AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:06 PM | Comments (0)

Less Than Zero

When I saw this my first question was whether or not this guy was related to Oswald Mosely:

Formula One's governing body is keeping its distance from sexual allegations in a British tabloid newspaper about its president, Max Mosley.

"This is a matter between Mr. Mosley and the paper in question," an International Automobile Federation (FIA) spokesman said.

"We understand that Mr. Mosley's lawyers are now in contact with that newspaper and the FIA has no comment."

The News of the World reported in a front page story that FIA president Mosley, 67, had taken part in a "sadomasochistic orgy" with five prostitutes that reportedly involved Nazi role-playing.

Ohmigod, he is:

Mosley is the son of the late Oswald Mosley, founder of the pre-war British Union of Fascists.

Sometimes, my free word association football skills amaze me. Extra bonus points if you know where the post title comes from. For you Spleenville fans, Tim Blair is more the go to guy for Formula One.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:01 PM | Comments (0)

March 30, 2008

Masters of the Universe

The same sort of hubris that leads some to think mankind can save the world is what drives others to think mankind can destroy it:

... if two men pursuing a lawsuit in federal court in Hawaii turn out to be right. They think a giant particle accelerator that will begin smashing protons together outside Geneva this summer might produce a black hole or something else that will spell the end of the Earth — and maybe the universe.

... The world’s physicists have spent 14 years and $8 billion building the Large Hadron Collider, in which the colliding protons will recreate energies and conditions last seen a trillionth of a second after the Big Bang. Researchers will sift the debris from these primordial recreations for clues to the nature of mass and new forces and symmetries of nature.

... The lawsuit, filed March 21 in Federal District Court, in Honolulu, seeks a temporary restraining order prohibiting CERN from proceeding with the accelerator until it has produced a safety report and an environmental assessment. It names the federal Department of Energy, the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, the National Science Foundation and CERN as defendants.

For extra bonus curmudgeon points, read the article and note how the flippant attempt at humor in the first paragraph of the article. Dead, dying, and broke people are such a hoot. This is especially poignant since I'm willing to bet dollars to doughnuts the authors of this piece wouldn't know a Feynman diagram if it bit them in the ass.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:14 PM | Comments (2)

A Senior Moment

Senior Democrats mull Al Gore's nomination

This is perhaps the most wretched development in American politics since I reached the age of majority. I don't mean Al Gore as a candidate, however detestable that may be, but the idea that he will ride to the rescue of the aristocrats like some postmodern Scarlet Pimpernel. Let us never hear again of stolen or miscounted votes from people whose sense of entitlement has become so ingrained they now deem votes (and apparently voters) unnecessary and too unreliable.

Speaking of le Pimpernel Scarlette, this situation reminds me of this excerpt from a great tome of British history, wherein Edmund Blackadder is interviewing the Comte de Frou Frou in Mrs. Miggin's pie shop. The Comte de Frou Frou is secretly the Scarlet Pimpernel, though this fact is unknown to Edmund at the time:

Edmund: "...Now, listen, Frou Frou, would you like to earn some money?"

Comte de Frou Frou: "No, I wouldn't. I would like other people to earn it and then give it to me..."

Dude, this applies on so many levels it is scary.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:51 AM | Comments (0)

March 28, 2008

There Will Be Floods, of Oil That Is

Can we develop our own energy resources and not be held captive to the pariahs of the Middle East? Yes we can!

America is sitting on top of a super massive 200 billion barrel Oil Field that could potentially make America Energy Independent and until now has largely gone unnoticed. Thanks to new technology the Bakken Formation in North Dakota could boost America’s Oil reserves by an incredible 10 times, giving western economies the trump card against OPEC’s short squeeze on oil supply and making Iranian and Venezuelan threats of disrupted supply irrelevant.

In the next 30 days the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey) will release a new report giving an accurate resource assessment of the Bakken Oil Formation that covers North Dakota and portions of South Dakota and Montana. With new horizontal drilling technology it is believed that from 175 to 500 billion barrels of recoverable oil are held in this 200,000 square mile reserve that was initially discovered in 1951. The USGS did an initial study back in 1999 that estimated 400 billion recoverable barrels were present but with prices bottoming out at $10 a barrel back then the report was dismissed because of the higher cost of horizontal drilling techniques that would be needed, estimated at $20-$40 a barrel.

It was not until 2007, when EOG Resources of Texas started a frenzy when they drilled a single well in Parshal N.D. that is expected to yield 700,000 barrels of oil that real excitement and money started to flow in North Dakota. Marathon Oil is investing $1.5 billion and drilling 300 new wells in what is expected to be one of the greatest booms in Oil discovery since Oil was discovered in Saudi Arabia in 1938.

Just freakin' wow. Of course there's also the oil sands in Canada and the oil shale in Colorado if we ever really decide to get serious, not to mention nuclear power. Peak oil becomes freak oil.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:46 PM | Comments (0)

Ban the Ban, Ban

Can we leave the UN now?

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday condemned as "offensively anti-Islamic" a Dutch lawmaker's film that accuses the Koran of inciting violence.

Ban acknowledged efforts by the government of the Netherlands to stop the broadcast of the film, which was launched by Islam critic Geert Wilders over the Internet, and appealed for calm to those "understandably offended by it."

"There is no justification for hate speech or incitement to violence," Ban said in a statement. "The right of free expression is not at stake here."

Uh ok, so what is at stake?

"Freedom must always be accompanied by social responsibility," Ban said.

Uh huh, and let me guess, the UN is going to define "social responsibility" for us?

DOWNDATE: Maybe The One can help:

"Part of what my role in my politics is to get people who don't normally listen to each other to talk to each other, who [say] crazy things, who are offended by each other, for me to understand them and to maybe help them understand each other."

I guess a groundbreaking speech to heal the rift between Islamists and the rest of the world will be forthcoming any day.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Better Doesn't Mean Good

Chelsea Says Hillary Would Make ‘Better’ President Than Father

Although why her judgment means anything here is beyond me.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:32 PM | Comments (0)

The Force Is Strong in This One

Is it just me or does it seem to anyone else as though Senator Obama can stand before the representatives of Big Media, put on his best Alec Guinness voice and say, "these aren't the issues you're looking for." Dutiful representatives of Big Media stare at him for a couple of seconds and then say, "these aren't the issues we're looking for," before turning and suddenly discovering that Senator McCain is old and Senator Clinton is, well, Senator Clinton.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:26 PM | Comments (0)

... That'll Be the Day I Go Back to Annandale

I wish I could write like this:

Ever see one of those creepy Eastern European films where the inmates take over the asylum and make grotesque faces at the camera while a sinister oom-pah band plays in the background? No? Well, now you have.

By all means, do watch the videos. Link via Tim Blair.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:01 AM | Comments (0)

March 27, 2008

On Second Thought, Let's Not Go There, 'Tis A Silly Place

I found few things that better illutstrate what's wrong with the media when it comes to our national elections than this.

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:24 PM | Comments (0)

Hillary Resigns from Race!

Not really, at least not that I know of. Just checking to see if anyone is actually reading this.

Posted by Charles Austin at 01:35 PM | Comments (1)

March 26, 2008

Counting Roosting Chickens at Home Before They Hatch, Or Something

With the nonsense going on with the Democrat's nominating process and the potential defection of a lot of sore losers if their candidate doesn't win, I'm beginning to wonder if the Democrat majority in Congress is as safe and secure as vrtually everyone assumes it to be. Of course there are a lot of retiring Republicans and a lot more secure Democrat seats, but a 5% swing in many races could be tsunamic in its effect on the balance of power. Pendulums swing both ways. Everyone remembers the swing to the left in 2006, but the swing to the right in 1994 that took down a sitting Speaker of the House, not so much.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:05 PM | Comments (0)


Chavez says U.S. relations could worsen with McCain

To be fair though, what couldn't?

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)

Was There a Doubt?

Hillary owns up to one of her fibs, by claiming she is human.

Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday she made a mistake in claiming that she came under hostile fire in Bosnia 12 years ago, as rival Barack Obama's campaign continued to challenge her credibility.

In a recent speech and interviews, the New York senator described a harrowing scene in Tuzla, Bosnia, in which she and her daughter, Chelsea, had to run for cover as soon as they landed for a visit in But video footage of the day showed a peaceful reception in which a young girl greeted the first lady on the tarmac.

Clinton told reporters in Pennsylvania on Tuesday that she erred in describing the scene, which she now realizes after talking with aides and others.

"So I made a mistake," she said. "That happens. It proves I'm human, which you know, for some people, is a revelation."

Revelation? I'd be a little less hasty with the "end times" allusions if I were in her shoes.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:37 AM | Comments (0)



With eight months to go before the U.S. presidential election, the candidates have raised almost $1 billion to fund their campaigns -- more than the size of the economies of several African countries.

Sounds like a lot, especially given that the race for president dominates news coverage. Must be a big deal, right? Not so much:

Wall Street banks, brokerages and hedge funds may report $460 billion in credit losses from the collapse of the subprime mortgage market, or almost four times the amount already disclosed, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Hmm..., I bet that's bigger than the economy of any African country, if not the economy of every African country. Combined. Though why the economies of the most derelict African countries is a measuring stick still remains beyond me. I guess we can thank Robert Mugabe for making our elections look frivolous and expensive.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:32 AM | Comments (0)

March 24, 2008

Mayeb Obama Can Ask Ahmadinejad About This

Gee, who knew?

The most senior US general in Iraq has said he has evidence that Iran was behind Sunday's bombardment of Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone.

Obviously part of Bush's march to war with Iran!

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:59 PM | Comments (0)

Nice Try

Remember, the NY Times reports the news and makes no effort to drive it:

Two McCain Moments, Rarely Mentioned

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:55 PM | Comments (0)

From the Garden of Hedonism...

The serpent's head speaks:

The reaction of some of Mr. Clinton’s allies suggests that might have been a wise decision. “An act of betrayal,” said James Carville, an adviser to Mrs. Clinton and a friend of Mr. Clinton.

“Mr. Richardson’s endorsement came right around the anniversary of the day when Judas sold out for 30 pieces of silver, so I think the timing is appropriate, if ironic,” Mr. Carville said, referring to Holy Week.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:46 PM | Comments (0)

China Gets An Abject Lesson In Getting What They Asked For

While we can shake our head at headlines like this:

Dalai Lama and his allies are out to destroy Olympics, says China

... it remains utterly unfunny that so many one party "states" with roughly the same mentality caused by a complete lack of political competition exist all over this country. Take St. Louis for instance, where there is no one alive who has ever been elected to public office as a Republican.

China's ascent is not going to be very smooth over the next twenty years. Any guesses as to who they will blame after the Dalai Lama assumes room temperature?

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:41 PM | Comments (0)

About Time

Sirius-XM deal clears big regulatory hurdle

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:31 PM | Comments (0)

Simple Economics

The first part of this makes sense, but the latter displays a breathtaking ignorance of supply and demand:

Sales of existing homes in the U.S. unexpectedly rose in February for the first time in seven months, easing concern credit restrictions and falling prices would hurt demand.

You'd think someone writing for Bloomberg would be embarrassed to type something this silly.

Link via Instapundit.

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:20 PM | Comments (0)

March 21, 2008

If You Can't Be Trusted With the Little Stuff, How Do We Trust With the Big Stuff?

When you get so used to lying that you can no longer tell the difference between a lie and the truth, maybe it's time to rethink a misspent life:

Hillary Clinton has been regaling supporters on the campaign trail with hair-raising tales of a trip she made to Bosnia in March 1996. In her retelling, she was sent to places that her husband, President Clinton, could not go because they were "too dangerous." When her account was challenged by one of her traveling companions, the comedian Sinbad, she upped the ante and injected even more drama into the story. In a speech earlier this week, she talked about "landing under sniper fire" and running for safety with "our heads down."

There are numerous problems with Clinton's version of events.

As a reporter who visited Bosnia soon after the December 1995 Dayton Peace agreement, I can attest that the physical risks were minimal during this period, particularly at a heavily fortified U.S. Air Force base, such as Tuzla. Contrary to the claims of Hillary Clinton and former Army secretary Togo West, Bosnia was not "too dangerous" a place for President Clinton to visit in early 1996. In fact, the first Clinton to visit the Tuzla Air Force base was not Hillary, but Bill, on January 13, 1996.

I only posted this for the response by Sinbad:

According to Sinbad, who provided entertainment on the trip along with the singer Sheryl Crow, the "scariest" part was deciding where to eat. As he told Mary Ann Akers of The Post, "I think the only 'red-phone' moment was: 'Do we eat here or at the next place.'" Sinbad questioned the premise behind the Clinton version of events. "What kind of president would say 'Hey man, I can't go 'cause I might get shot so I'm going to send my wife. Oh, and take a guitar player and a comedian with you."

In even a substantitally less-than-perfect world, Senator Clinton couldn't show her face in public, much less aspire to the highest elected office in the land.

Link via Instapundit.

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:27 PM | Comments (0)

Gunga Galunga... Gunga, Gunga-Galunga

The Dalai Lama says:

"I will go to Beijing."

Say hi to Nixon's shade for me.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:55 AM | Comments (2)

Cui Bono?

Why some of us are suspicious of an ever-expanding government:

The State Department says it is trying to determine whether three contract workers had a political motive for looking at Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's passport file.

This is appalling, yet utterly predictable. My first thought was Hillary Clinton, what with the FBI files and whatnot, but then my mind works differently than others:

Bill Burton, a spokesman for Obama's presidential campaign, called for a complete investigation. "This is an outrageous breach of security and privacy, even from an administration that has shown little regard for either over the last eight years," Burton said. "Our government's duty is to protect the private information of the American people, not use it for political purposes."

Yeah, evil Bush! What, you think Karl Rove isn't still calling the shots? We need some changy hopiness that will give this paranoid freak more power.

DOWNDATE: Not wanting to be left out:

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has told Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton that her passport file was breached in 2007. In a statement from her Senate office, Clinton said she had been contacted by Rice. The State Department plans to brief Clinton's staff Friday about the unauthorized breach.

DOWNDATE: Bartender, a round of parity and bipartisanship for everybody:

The passport files of presidential candidates Sen. Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, and Sen. John McCain, a Republican, were improperly accessed by State Department workers, a U.S. official said on Friday.

Why anyone thinks this doesn't happen with any government records whenever someone with suction wants to find out something about somebody is what I can't figure out.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:46 AM | Comments (0)

Attention Rich Bastards

Allow me to make you happy:

Money can buy happiness, but only if you spend it on someone else, researchers reported on Thursday.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:36 AM | Comments (0)


Powerline's post on Senator Obama saying "typical white people" includes a video of his speech, but the freeze frame there looks awfully familiar:


Where have I seen that before? Oh, yeah:


Do you think this was done intentionally, subconciously, or is it merely sheer coincidence?

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2008

What Does It Mean?

The NCAA Tournament started seven and one-half hours ago and I haven't even checked for a score yet. The times, they are a-changin'.

Today's mashup...

Joe Jackson video of It's Different for Girls

Peter Gabriel video of Shock the Monkey

Big Audio Dynamite video of Medicine Show

Foo Fighters cover Baker Street

Jethro Tull video of Too Old to Rock & Roll

The Rolling Stones doing Far Away Eyes

Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers video of Don't Come Around Here No More

Steve Goodman's autobiographical A Dying Cubs Fan's Last Request

Posted by Charles Austin at 07:29 PM | Comments (2)

Believe It Or Not, Not All the News Out of Zimbabwe Is Bad

Instapundit writes:

ALEX SINGLETON: "People say that the market promotes selfishness, but it turns out that it is when things are owned collectively that greed thrives."

Before opening his hyperlink, this seems obvious as the tragedy of the commons writ large. After opening the link, well, this is a poor example to illustrate the point as the example offered suffers a bit from implying correlation equals causation.

Posted by Charles Austin at 07:07 PM | Comments (0)

March 19, 2008

Whatever You Do, Don't Mention the Warmening

No one has seen Al Gore lately. Perhaps he's been hiding in his underwater lair:

Some 3,000 scientific robots that are plying the ocean have sent home a puzzling message.

It's only puzzling if you think you already know the answer.

These diving instruments suggest that the oceans have not warmed up at all over the past four or five years.

And if the observable data doesn't fit the theory, well... blame the observers!

That could mean global warming has taken a breather. Or it could mean scientists aren't quite understanding what their robots are telling them.

Aw, to hell with it. Read the article if you like and see if you can find anywhere that the possibility that global warming isn't happening is even for the briefest moment considered. Note carefully how the authors and the experts start generating theories to explain the anomalies rather than questioning their assumptions. Ever heard of Occam's Razor?

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:53 PM | Comments (0)

Luxuries Become Necessities Become Luxuries

I've often said that as long as Americans are buying $4 cups of coffee, I think the economy is doing just fine. Of course, when the economy starts to catch a cold, the first thing to go are $4 cups of coffee:

Warning of an economic "tailspin," Starbucks Corp outlined long-awaited plans to turn around its U.S. business on Wednesday, but details from new coffee machines to a rewards program for frequent customers failed to excite investors, who sent shares down 4 percent.

Time to do some research on recession and inflation proof industries.

DOWNDATE: I don't think I'll be tipping at Starbuck's any more.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:12 PM | Comments (0)

Killin' Heller

After Kelo and McCain-Feingold, I no longer take anything involving the Supreme Court for granted. As I think more and more about Heller and SCOTUS, I worry that early media reports are all a setup and that individual rights advocates are going to be sorely disappointed in what comes forth, especially if Chief Justice Roberts compromises to get something better than a 5-4 result. Here's hoping Mr. Heller's plea to be able to have a firearm to defend himself and not just our public, ahem, servants gets a fair and equitable hearing and result. Justice should indeed be blind, but there's no reason for her to be deaf and dumb as well.

If my worst fears are realized, spoons (and spoonerisms) may be all we are left with to defend ourselves.

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:38 PM | Comments (0)

The Ninth Circle of Heller

More on the SCOTUS review of the Second Amendment:

Justice Stephen Breyer appeared reluctant to second-guess local officials.

That's something to be filed away for future reference on something less, shall we say, progressive. But here's what you really gotta love about a progressive mindset:

Is it "unreasonable for a city with a very high crime rate ... to say no handguns here?" Breyer asked.

Does Justive Breyer really think that an executive edict actually got rid of all the handguns in the Disctrict? Of course, the fact that the handgun ban has been in place for thirty years in Washington, D.C., with crime steadily rising during all that time ought to plant a seed of doubt in an open-minded, thinking individual, unless, of course, you never actually worry about having to account for the results of your good intentions. Personally, I expect a little more penetrating thought and insight from someone wearing these robes. But I digress.

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:26 PM | Comments (0)

March 18, 2008


His Zenness better be careful about incentivizing the Chinese government in ways other than he intended:

The Dalai Lama responded to charges from China that he orchestrated deadly riots in Lhasa to sabotage the Olympics with a pledge to resign as temporal leader of Tibet’s Buddhist people if the violence — on both sides — did not stop.

This sounds like he thinks he has Master of the Universe type power.

Technically, the Dalai Lama cannot resign because he is revered as the reincarnation of his predecessor but he has often suggested that he will not return again.

Gee, what will Carl Spackler do on his deathbed now?

Posted by Charles Austin at 07:41 PM | Comments (0)

What a Maroon

Lynndie England Blames Media for Photos

Of course, we don't condone this:

Eleven U.S. soldiers were convicted of crimes at the prison near Baghdad.

Not that Errol Morris is aware of this or he might have felt just a little silly calling his movie about the Abu Ghraib abuses Standard Operating Procedure.

Posted by Charles Austin at 07:26 PM | Comments (0)

The Wright Stuff

Good speech, good man. Not a great speech, not a great man. But this is all a sideshow to the fact that Senator Obama is an illiberal utopian statist. I'll never vote for him, but my choice has nothing to do with his relationship to Rev. Wright or how he spins it.

Not that anyone will listen to me, but, sadly, I believe it was a strategic error to try and get serious at this point in the campaign, regardless of the specific merits or demerits of what he said. Most of the country isn't paying attention to the election and for many of them this controversy will now be the first time they have paid more than a passing thought to Senator Obama. However good a politician Senator Obama may or may not be, he seems to lack the killer instinct you have to have to succeed on this particular field of battle. Though the analogy is a bit strained, Senator Clinton (and her enablers) just succeeded in convincing Senator Obama to fling her into the briar patch. He's going to have a hard time catching her again and even if he does it won't be without pain and loss.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:13 PM | Comments (1)

Heller On Earth, Or the Road to Heller Is Paved With Good Intentions

The Supreme Court seems ready to validate the, in my humble opinion, rather clear language of the Second Amendment concerning an individual's right to bear arms. But hey, I thought the same thing about the right to free speech too, so what do I know? Anyway, the usual suspects are running scared.

Personally, I'd like everyone to have to sit and listen to the audio clip I heard over lunch of Justice Stevens saying there was no right to self defense in the US Constitution. Folks need to know just how far from common sense some of our betters have strayed.

For posterity, here is the actual text of the Second Amendment:

"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."

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:08 PM | Comments (0)

Precious Pretensions, Purple Prose

Via Amazon's Omnivaracious via Instapundit, here's Paul Wilner on Jackalope Dreams by Mary Clearman Blew:

Sentences seethe with urgent, unhurried energy, ...

No, they don't. But if they did, would that be good or bad?

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:59 PM | Comments (1)

March 17, 2008

If You Give Into Them Every Time They Cry, They Will Become Little Tyrants But They Won't Remember Why

See if you can guess which one is from the news and which one is a lyric by Robyn Hitchcock:

"British police want to collect DNA samples from children as young as five who 'exhibit behavior indicating they may become criminals in later life'. A spokesman for the Association of Chief Police Officers argued that since some schools already take pupils' fingerprints, the collection and permanent storage of DNA samples was the logical next step. And of course, if anyone argues that branding naughty five-year-olds as lifelong criminals will stigmatize them, the proposed solution will be to take samples from all children."

... and ...

Uncorrected personality traits that seem whimsical in a child may prove to be ugly in a fully grown adult. Lack of involvement with the father, or over-involvement with the mother, can result in lack of ability to relate to sexual fears, and in homosexual leanings, narcissism, transexuality (girls from the waist up/men from the waist down), attempts to be your own love object. Reconcile your parents to you by becoming both at once! Even Marilyn Monroe was a man, but this tends to get overlooked by ourmother-fixated, overweight, sexist media. So, uncorrected personality traits that seem whimsical in a child may prove to be ugly in a fully grown adult. If you give in to them every time they cry, they will become little tyrants but they won't remember why. Then when they are thwarted by people in later life, they will become psychotic and they won't make an ideal husband or wife. The spoiled baby grows into the escapist teenager who's the adult alcoholic who's the middle-aged suicide. So, uncorrected personality traits that seem whimsical in a child may prove to be ugly in a fully grown adult.

Extra credit for determining whether Robyn's lyric is more applicable to the kids or the police. I admit it, I just love anything with the word "thwarted" in it. Aw heck, while I'm at it, here's more Robyn and still more. Sadly, I couldn't find My Wife and My Dead Wife.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:46 PM | Comments (1)

Don't Sell Youself Short

As Ty once said, "you're a tremendous slouch":

The conventional narrative for 2008 is that the Democrats would have to try really hard not to win the White House.

Gotta give an A for effort.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:28 PM | Comments (0)

Isn't that Special?

Well, no:

The term "special relationship" is no longer in use at Britain's Washington Embassy. One British diplomat told Sunday Telegraph journalist Tim Shipman that the term wasn't much of a career enhancer.

The new British Ambassador to the USA "frowns on the phrase". Meanwhile Gordon Brown hasn't had dinner with America's Ambassador to Britain since becoming Prime Minister.

Gordon Brown (who hasn't spoken regularly to George W Bush) prefers to work with EU allies rather than focus on the transatlantic relationship.

Churchill must be rolling in his grave.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:20 PM | Comments (1)

Don't Tase Me Bro

Clintons Prod Dems on Delegate Strength

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:13 PM | Comments (0)

Don't Be Weevil

Or something:

Google says Microsoft's Yahoo buy might hurt Internet

Microsoft couldn't hurt the Internet if it tried. Such blatant rent seeking should help disabuse anyone of the "special" nature of Google though.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:07 PM | Comments (0)

Free Tibet

Great bumper sticker, man. Really let's me know you care, you know, like, in theory, anyway. In real life, not so much.

Hundreds of Tibetans have died in unrest in Lhasa and elsewhere in the Chinese-ruled Himalayan region, the India-based Tibetan parliament-in-exile said in a statement Monday.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:05 PM | Comments (0)

His Money Isn't Fungible

Unlike his, well, you know:

Gov. Paterson denies using state or campaign money to pay for liaisons with another woman during a rocky patch in his marriage.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:00 PM | Comments (0)

March 16, 2008

Freedom Is Slavery, Yada, Yada, Yada

"There can be no freedom without limits." -- Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:19 PM | Comments (0)


Via Drezner via Instapundit, notes from the 2008 Brussels Forum, specifically two items within item 7 of 10:

7) The most potent symbol of waning American power at this conference: the entire U.S. Congressional delegation didn't make it because their DC-9 had to make a fueling stop in Newfoundland, and failed to re-start.

Meanwhile, the dollar sunk to a new low against the euro, which means that the EU economy is now larger than the American economy.

With respect to the former, methinks this is reading a bit too much into one data point. I wonder what finished second in the America in deline metaphor competition? With respect to the latter, I look forward to the economically larger Europe paying for our defense for the next 60 years.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:11 PM | Comments (0)


In his story with respect to Rezko and Wright, and Hope! you will buy it. Mostly though, he just seems sorry that people are noticing.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:57 PM | Comments (0)

March 15, 2008

What Would Muhammad Do?

Muhammad Ali, that is. Is Obama just laying against the ropes letting Hillary throw everything she can until she's exhausted, emotionally, mentally, and, most importantly, financially? We can call it the hope-a-dope strategery.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:23 PM | Comments (0)

Roger Simons Asks, So I'll Answer

With Obama Wounded and Hillary Unappealing, Will Gore Finally Surface?


Posted by Charles Austin at 05:15 PM | Comments (0)

Ends, Means and All That

Via Joe Gandleman via Instapundit, we get this gem from Daily Kos:

"Would Obama encourage that sort of anger, bullying, intimidation and hate from his followers toward another Democrat and her supporters? Do those followers of his help his cause at the end of the day?"

Because, of course, the cause permits anger, bullying, intimidation and hate if your opponents aren't Democrats.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:58 PM | Comments (0)

March 14, 2008

A Baker's Dozen

Too much whine, too much wine... goodnight.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:35 PM | Comments (0)

Words Fail Me

Gere sees Olympics boycott if China mishandles Tibet

Because, of course, they've handled it so well thus far.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:31 PM | Comments (0)

Liberal Fascism

I haven't read Jonah Goldberg's book and probably won't. Nonetheless, the impression I get from reading his National Review Liberal Facism blog is that Mr. Goldberg is dancing on the head of a pin a la medieval theologians, and bitching whenever anyone tries to point that out. He's probably correct insofar as it goes, but he's defined his thesis so narrowly that it is of little interest to those not engaged in hyper-partisan psuedo-intellectual pissing matches.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:28 PM | Comments (1)


Barack Obama has always been a tabulas rosa on which people project their progressive fantasies. Now that the lights have been turned up a bit, it is unsurprising, to me at least, that people are finding the same sort of blemishes in the reflection they have admired that exist on their own selves.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:22 PM | Comments (0)

The Bastards Say, "Welcome"

I stole the title from Tracy Kidder's The Soul of a New Machine, but it fits my feelings for this piece by David Mamet. I suppose I should be more gracious and thankful that he's seen the light, but I struggle with this a bit since, until last week, he's obviously thought I was a moron from before I reached the age of maturity for thinking these very same things things.

To be honest though, there's a PhD thesis in responding to the lunatic comment thread his little piece generated.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:17 PM | Comments (0)

No Country for Old Men

By chance, I wandered in to see this movie on New Year's Eve in Santa Monica. It deserved the Oscar for Best Picture and then some. Since then, I've read a couple of Cormac McCarthy novels and come to appreciate him a lot. You should too.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:07 PM | Comments (0)

When You Walk Through the Garden...

The Wire is probably the best thing on TV since Ken Burns' epic on The Civil War. Lack of posting has inhibited much commentary, but here's a few thoughts outside what I've seen posted elsewhere.

When Hamsterdam had to be covered up, its amazing how much manpower and machinery could be brought to bear virtually overnight compared to the challenges of fighting real crime on the streets.

Throughout the series there are parallels everywhere between what happens on the street and what happens in the "legitimate" world. When I have about 120 hours, I''ll write an essay on this. Anything less and the brilliance and depth cannot even be scatched upon.

Marla Daniels is truly evil. I'm almost thinking she was the driving force behind Cedric's early Narcotic's thieving. Other than that, he's about the cleanest guy in the show. His only real fault seems to be a sense of loyalty that blinds him to those he holds closest.

One of the more perceptive comments over at The House Next Door is that the penultimate episode of each season is almost always the bets. It really is true, but now you'll have to buy the DVDs (or Blu-Rays) to know why.

Season Five has too much "insider baseball" to be as compelling as the previous years. For instance, I've never watched HBO's Entourage because I'm quite certain I could never bring myslef to like or empathize with anyone who makes a living in Hollywood. The newsroom comes close, but at least their level of pretension is at least tolerable since they only think they're smarter, not better, than everyone around them.

To pile on a little on Season Five the fake serial killer and illegal wiretap are a little over the top. Not to mention the coincidence of the fake Pulitzer and Mayor Governor Carcetti all being intrically interwoven into the story line.

It's a tragedy that so few people have seen this. Yes, it's profane and gritty, but it is more real than anything on commercial TV and most everything on cable.

Finally, a few too many happy endings in the final season to fit in with the rest of the series, especially considering the almost total lack of happy endings in the previous seasons.

Far, far too much to do justice to now, but more later.

Posted by Charles Austin at 11:04 PM | Comments (0)

It's A Comedy

I watched a couple of episodes of HBO's In Treatment prior to The Wire. Funniest thing I've seen in a long time with pathetic people trying to outpathetic each other.

What do you mean I'm not supposed to laugh?

P.S. Apologies to The Fat Guy since I posted this in a comment there.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:40 PM | Comments (0)

Props to Andrea

A side note and hat tip to my webmistress Andrea. I was in Orlando recently and had a chance to have dinner with her and then got sick. Highest fever since my appendix burst 35 years years ago, but that's a whole 'nother story. Given the three abdominal surgeries that generated, I think I can almost hang with Mr. Blair.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:33 PM | Comments (0)

How 'Bout Those Illini

A 14-18 Illinois team knocks off Purdue to reach the semi-finals of the Big 10 Tournament for the tenth time in eleven tries.

Oh, and did I mention that I had an ESPN Press Pass at the Rose Bowl this year? If you ask nice, maybe I'll tell you about it.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:29 PM | Comments (2)

Red, Red Whine

When I've finished a bottle of wine before 9:00 PM on a Friday night, odds are good you get a dose of blogging.

DOWNDATE: I just noticed it is a month and a day since my last post. Bu then again, it is a leap year, so don't read too much into it.

Posted by Charles Austin at 10:06 PM | Comments (0)

Now, Even Investment Bankers Are Victims To Be Made Whole By the Gummint

Fed Races to Rescue Bear Stearns In Bid to Steady Financial System

Yeah that's it, to, um, steady the financial system. Do the people doing this or those reading this have any idea how utterly obscene this is? Big Media and Big Politics have been discouting risk for so long they've forgotten that it exists in all investments. Tell me again about how the government needs to be bigger. Especially since I've made all my mortgage payments on a house I bought for under $200K eight years ago, but will be taxed to pay for folks that can't make their $5,000 house payments. And I don't even get one of those "rebates" being offered up to he'p the economy.

Posted by Charles Austin at 09:58 PM | Comments (0)