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April 18th, 2009

On News of the Week

April 15th was the U.S. tax deadline and also a day of protests. Some claimed this was top-down thing and pointed to a few folks at the supposed "top" pushing it, but it happened all over without that. The claim has been debunked a few times over, but it's funny to watch what could well be called Soros' Minions whine about their opposition being controlled from a single or very few points.

There were, no doubt, some off-message folks spouting nonsense at the tea party protests/demonstration, such as someone in Des Moines someone trying to bring the gay marriage thing (which ought to be a non-issue all around) into things. I did see a few good pictures of various parties/demonstrations. Two of the best were:

* A bi-(or non-)partisan sign noting that Bush's overspending was bad and Obama's is worse.

* A shirt with images of a tea bag and a of a pitcher of a reddish fluid, captioned, "Which one are you drinking?"

There was, supposedly, even a gathering in Fairmont. I didn't go. Due to my schedule, I slept through it and most of the silly reactions to whatever all went on. One fellow said he preferred to drink his tea rather than do anything else with it. I can certainly understand that. Dumping it is uneconomical, and a while after drinking it you can really express a truly appropriate opinion of the irresponsibility of the federal budget.

To those railing on about the protests, the promotion thereof, and a bit of crudeness in some of it I have a couple things to say: After the mudslinging of the last eight years, you do not hold any moral high ground here. And to hear you now whine about dissent after screaming about how it was patriotic for the last several years says quite a bit about you. Guess what? Dissent is still patriotic. Even if the timing, and alleged content, of an incredibly vague "intelligence" report is suspicious as all get out. At least that distraction didn't seem to work.

Meanwhile Texas has said that it'd be nice if the federal government followed that Constitution document thing, as amended... but several silly folks have now said that "Texas is threatening to leave the union. Har, har, let 'em!" No.* Texas said that the tenth amendment ought to be taken seriously and maybe they will force the issue somehow. I don't really see how, but the commerce clause of the Constitution has been long abused to control states with their money.

As for Texas going on its own, I don't see it as at all likely but I doubt it would be as "amusing" as some claim. First, more money flows out of Texas in the form of federal taxes than flows in as appropriations. So right off, Texans would have less of an economic drag on them. If you think Texas is just yahoos and rednecks, consider where NASA's mission control is. Also consider where, and what, Pantex is. And UT and A&M. It isn't just cattle and old oilfields, folks.

Even if it is just symbolic, it would be good to see more states point out that unfunded mandates and "We'll give you some of your own money back if you play our games" are not only wrong, but in violation of both the letter and spirit of the Bill of the Rights.

A few pirates lost. Not just to the USA, but some also lost to France. The pirates need to keep on losing, and badly. The claim of an "independent navy" is absurd. If it were so, it would be defending the territorial waters from the (European and African) fishing poachers and illegal dumpers. Instead of that, they attack relief ships and kidnap people from them.

Oh yeah, and a company that sells books got caught implementing a poorly thought out policy - that got a lot more attention to due to a clumsy systems implementation and some social monkey-wrenching that exploited that clumsiness.

* Gov. Perry did quip about seccession, but isn't it strange to hear an uproar about leaving the country... from folks who seem to have the market cornered on "If $PERSON is elected, I'm/we're leaving the country!"?

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