Archive for December, 2010

Bottom feeders at the National Review

Dec 30, 2010 in Clueless Conservatives

Intellectual gods:

The blizzard is definitely a force for conservatism, and not only because it has had the global-warming crowd scrambling for explanations.

No, we’ve always had the same standard explanation that anybody with the slightest knowledge of statistics can understand, and you’re an idiot Charlotte Hays. For further evidence, refer back to the first half of your sentence, “The blizzard is definitely a force for conservatism.” As an Iowan I can surely attest that it was always so horrible when the street sweepers cleared and salted our roads after a blizzard. Sometimes it took them an extra day. The horror.

The main point is that anybody, and I mean anybody, who makes a global warming crack during a blizzard is nothing more than a smartass, and likely a scientifically illiterate one as well. Nothing in global warming theory says there will be no more blizzards. Nothing. Nowhere. Never. Nobody said it, nobody ever will. If Charlotte Hays is intelligent enough to understand that, then she’s a pathological panderer. Not that being such keeps one out of the National Review.

-hw

The genius of the market.

Dec 22, 2010 in Environment

They’ll do the right thing of their own accord. Just kidding:

Subsequently, a 2005 Wall Street Journal investigation and a separate EWG report based on court documents and depositions from a similar lawsuit in Kettleman City, Calif. revealed that PG&E had hired consultants to publish a fraudulent analysis of cancer mortality in Chinese villagers exposed to hexavalent chromium, in an attempt to disprove the link between the chemical and cancer. The study was published in the respected Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, and scientists and regulators — including the EPA — cited the fraudulent article in research and safety assessments. The journal retracted the paper in 2006 in response to EWG’s request for corrective action.

California officials then conducted a rigorous re-assessment of the study data, finding a statistically significant increase in stomach cancer among the exposed. Their analysis is consistent with laboratory evidence from the National Toxicology Program and others showing that hexavalent chromium in tap water causes gastrointestinal tumors in multiple species.

Industry has sought for more than six years to delay state-mandated regulation of hexavalent chromium in tap water in California. Aerospace giant Honeywell International Inc. and others have stalled the adoption of the advisory public health goal by pressing for additional external scientific peer review. California’s Department of Public Health can neither set nor enforce a mandatory tap water standard for hexavalent chromium until the goal is finalized.

Dirty hippie liberals try to keep the cancer out of your water. But, you know, letting them do that surely means Mao has won.

-hw

The mandate is constitutional, this is a distraction.

Dec 18, 2010 in Clueless Conservatives, Constitution

Gee, a Republican judge not actually heeding the Constitution, I didn’t think that was possible.

As Orin Kerr pointed out, Judge Hudson made a significant error in his reading of the Commerce Clause when he wrote “if a person’s decision not to purchase health insurance at a particular point in time does not constitute the type of economic activity subject to regulation under the Commerce Clause, then logically an attempt to enforce such provision under the Necessary and Proper Clause is equally offensive to the Constitution.” As Kerr notes, “the point of the Necessary and Proper clause is that it grants Congress the power to use means outside the enumerated list of of Article I powers to achieve the ends listed in Article I” (or as Justice Marshall famously put it “Let the end be legitimate, let it be within the scope of the constitution, and all means which are appropriate, which are plainly adapted to that end, which are not prohibited, but consist with the letter and spirit of the constitution, are constitutional.”)

The Commerce clause is not what the government is claiming as authority for a mandate. The Necessary and Proper Clause is. And there is a long history and fairly well developed tests for determining what is necessary and proper. If critics want to bemoan this perceived expansion of federal power, they need to consider the necessary and proper clause and its associated tests (rational relationship basis) used to assess the constitutionality of any federal action claiming it as a source of authority.

Look, all this business with Republicans and the Constitution is, much like everything else, a bumper-sticker not an actual position. These are the same people who have been attacking liberties for years treating the Constitution as a complete list of our rights when the Ninth Amendment specifically forbids reading the Constitution this way. If they don’t like something they call it unconstitutional, and being a judge doesn’t make any difference.

-hw

Better than Clinton.

Dec 18, 2010 in teh gay

1. Clinton couldn’t pass Health Care Reform, Obama did.
2. Clinton euthanized the regulatory dogs, while Obama passed financial reform.
3. Clinton signed DADT, Obama is going to sign its repeal within days.

Of course, Clinton raised taxes, presided over an era of prosperity, and put the country on the road to paying down the deficit and shoring up Social Security. I’m betting that with eight years Obama will be able to say that and a lot more.

But right now, let’s hail this great day of freedom, the day a Republican filibuster was broken in a victory for liberty and the honor of those who have served this country proudly, regardless of their orientation.

Greatest lame duck Congress ever, even with the tax deal and all the other things Republicans are killing, like the excellent DREAM act for immigrants. Somehow, they got the courage to act after they lost the election, and they did so on an issue that seemed insurmountable just years ago. This is huge. This is a big fucking deal. Marriage rights remain, but some places in America gays can get married already. Now every soldier in the Armed Forces can set this false division behind and achieve true unit cohesion. The purges can end. The best and brightest will prosper. And America finally joins the rest of the civilized world on this one.

This is just plain huge.

-hw

Always love this.

Dec 15, 2010 in Disappointing Dems, teh gay

Gay rights groups and leading commentators on the left will expect Reid to make this happen, and will be very reluctant to tolerate any efforts to blame Republican obstructionism if it fails.

Even though Republican obstruction is the only possible way it could fail. The beauty is that Republicans can kill whatever they want, and those who support the bill will blame Democrats. It’s a double win.

The good news is that I think DADT has pretty good chances of being repealed in the Senate. The Republican filibuster opposing the wishes of most Americans, most servicemen, the Secretary of Defense, and most of the military leadership may just be overcome. You don’t hear Mitch McConnell talking about “the people” much on this one, do you?

-hw

UPDATE: Must still be asleep and dreaming. News says we won. There must be a catch. What’s the catch? We don’t just win without a catch! WTF, is this real? I won’t be able to bear it if it isn’t, and I don’t know if I can bear it that it is…the Senate Republicans block health care for 9/11 responders, and they let this pass?

Eh, can’t be real. I’m going back to sleep. Can’t process…

Finished Product

Dec 11, 2010 in Politics

A little bit of video showing the finished product of some of the home improvement work we’ve been doing on the new edition.

-mg

Let the Bush tax cuts expire in their entirety.

Dec 11, 2010 in Economy, Politics

Yeah, I said it. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: The Bush tax cuts were a bad idea ten years ago, they’ve bankrupted us for ten years straight with nothing to show for it with the worst market crash since the Great Depression, and they’ll keep sapping us every day down the road they’re in place.

I am only talking about returning to the tax rates of the prosperous nineties and having a decent shot at paying down our debt before interest payments spiral up out of control. That this is now thought of as some extremist lefty position, and that lefty ire over the bill satisfies the “if it pisses off liberals, it must be a good idea!” quotient for Krauthammer and Sullivan (oh, it means Obama will have an easier time in 2012, so it’s automatically good and I should shut up, you see…), does not strengthen my faith in American discourse. Once again, any rational position held by the left and supported by the public must be written off as beyond the pale.

I’m not immune to the suggestion that this constitutes a second stimulus. Indeed, I desperately hope so, if it passes. I just don’t have any faith that anything beyond the unemployment benefits are going to create decent returns. The Bush tax cuts didn’t get us anywhere but ten feet out from the ledge of a cliff doing bicycle kicks, so why would two more years do anything? The richest Americans are already sitting on their cash and not investing because there’s no demand, so why would more cash change their mind? Right now, tax cuts are the only way they’ll get more cash, not through investing. “Hey, I’ll go build a factory to make stuff nobody wants!” isn’t any more likely to happen now.

I have almost no hope that the deal will be held off or altered acceptably, so my hope that it will actually do some good is slightly higher. That’s not an endorsement, but I’ll be willing to say my reservations were wrong if I am so proven, ala TARP. But if this thing doesn’t pay off and provide enough inertia to the economy to get us over the hump, we’re gonna get screwed like Sasha Grey in prison.

-hw

Quick one.

Dec 08, 2010 in Politics

The wildly irresponsible tax cut deal can go to hell.

Two years of OOOOH NO THE DEFICIT! and we get this budget-buster from Republicans. And then Obama is so goddamned stupid he agrees to let the Bush tax cuts get punted to the next election?

Gosh, I bet in two years we agree to extend them two more years! Or four! Or permanent!

If there are any Democrats with balls left, they know what to do.

More fake Republican outrage.

Dec 03, 2010 in Politics

So the guys who spent the past two years filibustering everything they could are outraged Democrats used the rules to use their majority to pass the middle class tax cut.

You know, that middle class tax cut Republicans plan on killing in the Senate. With their minority vote.

Of course, the librul media will totally call them on this blatant bullshit (not really). I just wonder how many drinks Boehner has to down to pipe off a whopper of a hypocritical whine like that.

-hw