Archive for the ‘Neighborhoods, Boroughs, Cities, States’ Category.

Kermit Gosnell, mass murderer. The movie.

Kermit Gosnell, mass murderer.

“Abortion” in sign language:

Abortion in sign language

Late last week the filmmaker team of Phelim McAleer and Ann McElhinney announced a crowdfunding project for a new, dramatic film about abortionist and convicted murderer Kermit Gosnell. The team had previously used Kickstarter to fund FrackNation, a sort of riposte to Josh Fox’s Oscar-nominated Gasland. The Gosnell movie would get into similiar territory, charging a biased media with covering up facts—in this case, an unimaginably gruesome series of murders—in order to further an agenda. (Irin Carmon has pointed out that feminist writers covered Gosnell when he was arrested, in 2011—the “blackout” charge is directed at the mainstream media, which didn’t initially cover Gosnell’s 2013 trial.)

So a fundrising page went up at Indiegogo. Nothing unusual about that, as the site plays the same crowdfunding middleman role as Kickstarter. But according to McAleer, the filmmakers had initially tried to work through Kickstarter again, turning tail after the site wanted them to tone down their pitch language. The abortion mentions were just too gruesome.

Anti-Abortion Filmmakers Say They Were Censored by Kickstarter

Want to help fund this movie about Kermit Gosnell, mass murderer? Then go to Indiegogo and contribute.

Fecundophobia – Abortion as a Sacrament

Rabid support for abortion on demand is a sign of a very sick society. Abortion is part of the culture of death.

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College Layoffs and the Standard BS from “academics”

Having tenure seems to mean reality need not intrude on your world. According to a sociology “professor” financial reality is “Social Darwinism” Ai yi yi, stop with the cant when you, the president of the local chapter of your union, can’t even figure out your own union is responsible. Sheesh. A PhD in stupid.

“They are really pitting old against new in a kind of social Darwinism,” said Christy Hammer, a sociology professor and president of the local chapter of the Associated Faculties of the University of Maine, an affiliate of the National Education Association.

Hammer said the method prompted infighting to break out within departments.

The “last hired, first fired” method is nothing new, but the faculty said that sort of thinking did not belong in nonprofit higher education.

“To my way of thinking, the administration is assaulting the whole institution of tenure,” said Rachel Bouvier, an economics professor who was laid off Friday.

Caswell, the university spokesman, said the order of layoffs was actually a product of the system’s faculty contracts. Those contracts are negotiated by the union.

“Under terms of the faculty contract, those with less seniority are terminated before those with more seniority,” he said in an email.

Exiled in Maine

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Premodern, Postmodern, Tailgating Winnebagos

While Putin was making a premodern fool out of himself, blustering and bullying, and lying on the global stage, Barack Obama confirmed most of the Russian stereotypes that he was a postmodern metrosexual. Putin gets up every morning to annoy Barack Obama, piqued not just that he is weak, but that he is sanctimonious and weak. Obama tries to ignore Putin, who grates on him like some Russian version of the folks who tailgate with their Winnebagos at a NASCAR race.

Rarely on the world stage have we suffered through two such extremes as an erstwhile community organizer theorizing against a former KGB agent. If only Putin were a run-of-the-mill college president, then Obama might order a takeover of the faculty lounge. Or if Putin were a local bank president, Obama, the SEIU, and Acorn might yell on his lawn about lending more money to the inner city. Alas, even Chicago is not Russia.

Of Pre- and Postmodern Poseurs

President Finger Wagger just can’t believe Putin is ignoring him. Oh, the humanity!

Forward!

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Never Hire or Vote For Brilliant Men

These are quite simple rules. They eliminate the genius quite as surely as they eliminate the unfit. No Edison could ever qualify; no Lincoln, either, with his soiled linen duster and his habit of interrupting important business with funny stories. I am sorry to forego the companionship of such men in my rather dingy building here in the wholesale grocery district. But I comfort myself with the thought that Cromwell built the finest army in Europe out of dull but enthusiastic yeomen; and that the greatest organization in human history was twelve humble men, picked up along the shores of an inland lake.

Why I Never Hire Brilliant Men

Obama is a political dilettante whose skills are entirely people skills. Valerie Jarrett’s people skills are negligible and concentrated on only one person, but unlike her boss, protégé and adopted son, she has the endurance and drive to pursue an issue indefinitely.

Barack Obama isn’t driven. Throughout his entire adult life there have been people there to open doors for him. It seemed natural for him to let Valerie Jarrett drive his political career and his administration to do the things that he lacks the attention span or the focus to do.

Valerie Jarrett, the CEO of Obama Inc.

Obama has become a door-to-door insurance salesman. His appearance on “Between Two Ferns” was humiliating not because the leader of the free world was taking part in a lame comedy routine, but because Obama was doing it to sell a product. Presidents have gone on Leno, Letterman and Saturday Night Live, but they have never sat awkwardly cracking jokes in the hopes that a few young people would stop by their website and bail them out by buying some of what they’re selling.

The Insurance Salesman-in-Chief

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Mockery, Truculence, and Minimalist Living = Irish Democracy

President Blah Blah Blah, President Poofter

There are many who have expressed the opinion over the years that the United States should go down some sort of “revolutionary” road. The topic has come up repeatedly in various areas of what was Tickerforum and I have repeatedly slapped it down, noting that only a fool who pays no attention to history pines for such a thing irrespective of how bad you may think the situation is.
. . .
Folks, the simple fact is that odds are 100:1 you’re going to get a bad result when you go down the road of violence. There are far too many people who think that when you take such a path you get a Thomas Jefferson moment.

The fact is that most of the time what you actually get is a Pinochet moment.

There are many means of non-violent action, including but not limited to withdrawing your consent by working less and reducing your footprint — and thus the ability of government to sustain its own size.

That’s lawful, by the way.

What raises my eyebrows are those who argue that this sort of perfectly-lawful choice will never work because the people won’t do it, yet at the same time they want to make noise about committing violence. Well, not only will most people not go along with that, but in addition the odds of a good outcome from getting involved in violence are much smaller than the odds from taking lawful and peaceful action instead!

Ukraine: A Warning To Those Who Are Fools

Irish Democracy

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Dunbar Number, Reason Video Awards, George Washington, Rent Seeking, Fascism

The answer isn’t 42. It is 150.


Meet Puddles: The Giant Sad Clown with the Golden Voice
Walking Tall With Atlanta’s Big Mike Geier
Mike Geier
Dames Aflame!
King-sized Mike Geier continues to follow his ever-growing, ever-eclectic muse
Interview at Teatro ZinZanni

Working with the anthropologist Russell Hill, [ evolutionary psychologist Robin] Dunbar pieced together the average English household’s network of yuletide cheer. The researchers were able to report, for example, that about a quarter of cards went to relatives, nearly two-thirds to friends, and 8 percent to colleagues. The primary finding of the study, however, was a single number: the total population of the households each set of cards went out to. That number was 153.5, or roughly 150.

This was exactly the number that Dunbar expected. Over the past two decades, he and other like-minded researchers have discovered groupings of 150 nearly everywhere they looked. Anthropologists studying the world’s remaining hunter-gatherer societies have found that clans tend to have 150 members. Throughout Western military history, the size of the company—the smallest autonomous military unit—has hovered around 150. The self-governing communes of the Hutterites, an Anabaptist sect similar to the Amish and the Mennonites, always split when they grow larger than 150. So do the offices of W.L. Gore & Associates, the materials firm famous for innovative products such as Gore-Tex and for its radically nonhierarchical management structure. When a branch exceeds 150 employees, the company breaks it in two and builds a new office.

The Dunbar Number, From the Guru of Social Networks

It is also the answer to “How Many People ‘Should’ You Invite To Your Wedding?

It is impossible for Americans to accept the extent to which the Colonial period—including our most sacred political events—was suffused with alcohol. Protestant churches had wine with communion, the standard beverage at meals was beer or cider, and alcohol was served even at political gatherings. Alcohol was consumed at meetings of the Virginian and other state legislatures and, most of all, at the Constitutional Convention.

Indeed, we still have available the list of beverages served at a 1787 farewell party in Philadelphia for George Washington just days before the framers signed off on the Constitution. According to the bill preserved from the evening, the 55 attendees drank 54 bottles of Madeira, 60 bottles of claret, eight of whiskey, 22 of porter, eight of hard cider, 12 of beer, and seven bowls of alcoholic punch.

George Washington: Boozehound. Prodigious alcohol consumption by Washington and his fellow founding fathers has been whitewashed from American history.

More after the jump.

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Misc Stuff

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President Asterisk Expands the Imperial Presidency

It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged.

G.K. Chesterton

Benghazi, IRS, AP, Fast and Furious, NSA, Obamacare.

Mockery and truculence are called for to properly honor the Moral Preener in Chief.

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Imagine

Imagine there’s no gubment
It ain’t easy but please try
No 99% below us
Above us no gubment spy
Imagine all poor people
Living like ours do today…

Imagine there’s no politicians
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to vote or Idle for
And no redistribution too
Imagine all the people
Buying stuff in peace…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be out of many one

Imagine no recessions
I wonder if you can
No need for rent or subsidy
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Wandering all the world…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be out of many one

Hat tip: EclectEcon: Imagine – a Libertarian Version

I offer no apologies to John Lennon, another moral preener.

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Libertarian, Classical Liberal: Richard Epstein

Libertarians fall into two distinct groups: strict libertarians like Rand Paul and classical liberals such as myself. “Classical liberal” is not a term that rolls off of the tongue. Consequently, “libertarian” is the choice term in popular discourse when discussing policies that favor limited government. Libertarians of all stripes oppose President Obama’s endless attacks on market institutions and the rich. The umbrella term comfortably embraces both strands of libertarian theory vis-à-vis a common intellectual foe.

It is important to understand the differences in views between the strong libertarian and classical liberal position. Serious hard-line libertarian thinkers include Murray Rothbard and Karl Hess. Rothbard believes nonaggression is the sole requirement of a just social order. For Hess, “libertarianism is the view that each man is the absolute owner of his life, to use and dispose of as he sees fit.” There are large kernels of truth in both propositions. It is quite impossible to see how any social order could be maintained if there were no limitations against the use, or threatened use, of force to enslave or butcher other people, which Hess’s proposition of absolute self-ownership strongly counteracts.

Yet the overarching question is how does a group of people move from the Hobbesian “war of all against all” toward a peaceful society? Hess claims that stable institutions are created by “voluntary association and cooperation.” Again, strong libertarians are on solid ground in defending (most) private contracts against government interference, which is why Lochner v. New York (1905), reviled as it is by most constitutional thinkers, was right in striking down New York’s sixty hours per week maximum labor statute. Yet the hard-line libertarian position badly misfires in assuming that any set of voluntary contracts can solve the far larger problem of social order, which, as Rothbard notes, in practice requires each and every citizen to relinquish the use force against all others. Voluntary cooperation cannot secure unanimous consent, because the one violent holdout could upset the peace and tranquility of all others.

The sad experience of history is that high transaction costs and nonstop opportunism wreck the widespread voluntary effort to create a grand social alliance to limit the use of force. Society needs a coercive mechanism strong enough to keep defectors in line, but fair enough to command the allegiance of individuals, who must share the costs of creating that larger and mutually beneficial social order. The social contract that Locke said brought individuals out of the state of nature was one such device. The want of individual consent was displaced by a consciously designed substantive program to protect both liberty and property in ways that left all members of society better off than they were in the state of nature. Only constrained coercion can overcome the holdout problems needed to implement any principle of nonaggression.

The flat tax is preferred because it reduces private incentives to game the tax system and, likewise, the ability of government officials to unfairly target their opponents. The optimal theory of taxation minimizes the distortions created by the need to fund the government activities that maintain public order and supply infrastructure. The classical liberal thus agrees with the hard-line libertarian that progressive taxation, with its endless loopholes, is unsustainable in the long run. At the same time, the classical liberal finds it incomprehensible that anyone would want to condemn all taxes as government theft from a hapless citizenry. The hard-line libertarian’s blanket condemnation of taxes as theft means that he can add nothing to the discussion of which tax should be preferred and why. The classical liberal has a lot to say on that subject against both the hard-line libertarian and the modern progressive.

My Rand Paul Problem: Why classical liberalism is superior to hard-core libertarianism.

Acton Institute, Cato Institute

Wikipedia: Libertarianism | Classical Liberalism | Christian Libertarianism

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