ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Friday, June 13, 2008

What is Jim Hightower Smoking?

Was recently listening to Democracy Now! on the local public radio station. Amy Goodman was interviewing Scott McClellan and it was a hoot. Anyway, immediately following the program, Jim Hightower provided this commentary propaganda to the listeners about why the war isn't a big story anymore:

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Posted by Jim Hightower
Listen to this Commentary

George W keeps telling us that America is at war. But if were at war, he wouldn’t need to tell us, for we’d be fully engaged in the national effort.

In fact, America is not at war. Oh, our troops and their families most certainly are deep in the hell of George W’s war, but 99 percent of us have no personal involvement in it. We are making no sacrifices whatsoever, not even being taxed to pay for it. We’re at beaches, bars and barbeques this summer – not at war.

Neither is America’s media establishment. Media monitor David Carr reports that coverage of the war has fallen to a mere three percent of print and broadcast news, down from 25 percent as recently as September. Collectively, network TV is now devoting only four minutes a week to a war that already has killed 4,100 of our soldiers and is draining $12 billion a month out of our national treasury.

Why this big media yawn? Some publishers and editors have decided that the “story” isn’t that interesting anymore (of course, if their families were the ones at war, they undoubtedly would find the story riveting). Also, conglomerate owners are cutting newsroom budgets to jack up their profits, so they have fewer reporters to bring us war news.

But perhaps the biggest reason for the drop in coverage is this: the government does not allow it. At White House insistence, the Pentagon has so severely restricted the movements and freedoms of reporters and photographers in Iraq that most can’t do their jobs. Frustrated, many media outlets have simply withdrawn, choosing not to pay for reporters who aren’t allowed to report. I can certainly appreciate their frustration – but, wait a minute, isn’t this government lockdown of our media a rather huge story in itself? Surly that’s worthy of intensive reporting?

Meanwhile, people keep dying in a war that practically no one supports.
I find this very interesting. I wonder if Michael Yon, Michael Totten, or any of the other numerous freedom loving reporters and bloggers who have been to Iraq post-Surge would say that the government restricted their ability to report the facts.

Jim - The more likely explanation is that the media isn't covering the Iraq War because they don't like the storyline anymore.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Thursday, June 12, 2008

No Shame - Global Warming Kool-Aid Drinkers and The Iowa Boy Scout Tragedy

The freaks have no shame. The latest burst of glabal warming idiocy comes from the ironically named The Center for American Progress:

June 12, 2008by Faiz Shakir, Amanda Terkel, Satyam Khanna, Matt Corley, Ali Frick, Benjamin Armbruster, and Brad Johnson
Global Boiling

The evidence for the consequences of global warming is appearing with alarming frequency. This morning's headlines are filled with tales of deadly weather: "At least four people were killed and about 40 injured when a tornado tore through a Boy Scout camp in western Iowa on Wednesday night"; "two people are dead in northern Kansas after tornadoes cut a diagonal path across the state"; "[t]wo Maryland men with heart conditions died this week" from the East Coast heat wave. These eight deaths come on top of reports earlier this week that the heat wave "claimed the lives of 17 people" and the wave of deadly storms killed 11 more: "six in Michigan, two in Indiana and one each in Iowa and Connecticut," as well as one man in New York. Tornadoes this year are being reported at record levels. States of emergency have been declared in Minnesota, California, Wisconsin, North Carolina and Michigan because of floods and wildfires. Counties in Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, South Dakota, and Wisconsin have been declared disaster areas due to the historic flooding that has breached dams, inundated towns, and caused major crop damage, sending commodity futures to new records. The flood waters are continuing down the Mississippi River, with "crests of 10 feet or more above flood level" for "at least the next two weeks."

Anybody who took high school general science and looks at a weather map would know the outburst of violent and wet weather in the middle of the country is caused by cold air which has taken up residence over the northwestern US (the ski resorts in The Cascades are still open in mid-June) which causes warm wet weather to be drawn up into the middle of the country from The Gulf. That cold air is the result of falling temperatures in the Pacific, the same phenomena causing the drought here in California.

So these global warming moonbats have it exactly backwards.

Idiots. This is not only stupid, it is pernicious. Un-informed folks buy this bilge, folks like the MSM.

Your Co-Conspirator,

Free Speech & Steyn

The New York Times covers the Mark Steyn Canadian Human Rights Tribunal and comes down on the correct side (ie, in support of free speech), but not without slamming conservatives:

June 12, 2008

American Exception
Unlike Others, U.S. Defends Freedom to Offend in Speech

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — A couple of years ago, a Canadian magazine published an article arguing that the rise of Islam threatened Western values. The article’s tone was mocking and biting, but it said nothing that conservative magazines and blogs in the United States do not say every day without fear of legal reprisal.

Things are different here. The magazine is on trial.

Two members of the Canadian Islamic Congress say the magazine, Maclean’s, Canada’s leading newsweekly, violated a provincial hate speech law by stirring up hatred against Muslims. They say the magazine should be forbidden from saying similar things, forced to publish a rebuttal and made to compensate Muslims for injuring their “dignity, feelings and self-respect.”

The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, which held five days of hearings on those questions here last week, will soon rule on whether Maclean’s violated the law. As spectators lined up for the afternoon session last week, an argument broke out.

“It’s hate speech!” yelled one man.

“It’s free speech!” yelled another.

In the United States, that debate has been settled. Under the First Amendment, newspapers and magazines can say what they like about minorities and religions — even false, provocative or hateful things — without legal consequence.

The Maclean’s article, “The Future Belongs to Islam,” was an excerpt from a book by Mark Steyn called “America Alone” (Regnery, 2006). The title was fitting: The United States, in its treatment of hate speech, as in so many other areas of the law, takes a distinctive legal path.

“In much of the developed world, one uses racial epithets at one’s legal peril, one displays Nazi regalia and the other trappings of ethnic hatred at significant legal risk, and one urges discrimination against religious minorities under threat of fine or imprisonment,” Frederick Schauer, a professor at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, wrote in a recent essay called “The Exceptional First Amendment.”

“But in the United States,” Professor Schauer continued, “all such speech remains constitutionally protected.”

So, you know... Mark Steyn / Conservatives = Nazi Regalia = Ethnic hatred.

It's also funny to listen to the author's empathy towards other, restrictive speech systems in the "Back Story" feature.

It's almost as if they find the Canadian restriction on speech as something they might like to try...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Sounds Like Something PJ O'Rourke Would Have Come up With (And Good for Them!)

Citizens fire back with carbon 'belch'
Americans pledge to boost emissions, wage war against proposed CO2 tax

Posted: June 02, 2008
9:32 pm Eastern

By Chelsea Schilling
© 2008 WorldNetDaily

Thousands of Americans are pledging to fire up their charcoal barbecue grills, bask in the infinite glow of numerous incandescent light bulbs, shun recycling of any kind and take spontaneous road trips in gas-guzzling vehicles to increase their personal carbon output – all in protest of the Senate debate over a bill calling for a "cap-and-trade" system.

Grassfire, one of the nation's fastest-growing grassroots organizations, has declared June 12 Carbon Belch Day and is enlisting citizens to expel more than 100 million pounds of CO2 to combat climate alarmist propaganda and to take a stand against a "$1.2 trillion carbon tax."

"We wanted to point out the absurdity of the climate alarmism of Al Gore and others who want to make us feel bad for just about everything we do and rally people for the battle over the carbon tax which is now under way in the Senate," Grassfire president Steve Elliott told WND. "We really plan to engage lots of citizens who have been under carbon-footprint guilt for far too long and give citizens an opportunity to make a statement that we reject climate alarmism. We're not going to stand for this carbon tax."

The Lieberman-Warner bill, named after sponsors Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and Sen. John Warner, R-Va., calls for imposed limits on U.S. greenhouse-gas emissions beginning in 2012. President Bush opposed the bill, saying it could create as much as $6 trillion in new costs on the American economy, though he has not threatened to veto it.

If I could afford the gasoline, I'd join them.

Your Co-Conspirator,

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Larry Kudlow on McCain's Energy Policy

Kudlow is bang on in this morning's post at The Corner on NRO.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

McCain Is Exactly Wrong on Energy [Larry Kudlow]

Sen. John McCain delivered a nearly pluperfect supply-side tax-cut plan yesterday, one that is worthy of conservative support, and frankly a real eye-opener showing just how good he can be. I wrote about it in my latest column.

But then he goes on NBC’s Today Show this morning and gets the whole energy story wrong. Oh my gosh.

When asked about gas prices at the pump, and whether they could go any lower, Sen. McCain said he didn’t think so because “You’ve got a finite supply, basically, and a cartel controlling it.”

This is exactly wrong. There is no finite supply, or if there is we are 100 years away from it. I don’t know who has put this thought into the senator’s mind, but it is a bad thought in terms of energy and a bad thought in terms of the politics of this campaign.

Look, we have the Bakken fields, the outer continental shelf and all the offshore drilling opportunities, ANWR, and so forth. There’s probably over a trillion barrels worth of reserves out there. And Republicans in the Senate are trying to move a deregulated drilling bill through the process. McCain should be backing this and talking about it.

Democrats are out there pushing cap-and-trade, which would jack up gasoline and oil energy prices, damage the economy, and create a massive central-planning exercise. The Democratic Congress has done nothing to alleviate the oil shortage. They’re captured by the greenies. They should be blamed.

This is a real turnaround issue for the Republicans and Mr. McCain. But McCain’s not going there.

Incidentally, in the Today Show interview, the senator takes a whack at oil-company profits, suggesting they should return some of these profits to consumers. And he would consider voting for a windfall profits tax. And then he used the phrase “obscene profits.” Make that two oh my goshes.

06/11 12:31 PM

Your Co-Conspirator,

Monday, June 09, 2008

There Ain't No Such Thing as a Free Lunch

Excellent question posed over at Seeking Alpha regarding the recent increase in the jobless rate:

Is the Minimum Wage Increase Behind the .50% Jobless Rate Jump?
Accoding to BLS data on unemployment rates by age, it looks like almost all of the .50% increase in May unemployment to 5.5% from 5% in April was due to increases in the jobless rates for young workers in the 16-24 year age group, especially the 16-19 year group (see chart above). For workers 25 years and over, the jobless rate has remained pretty stable at around 4%, compared to large increases from April for 16-19 year workers (+3.3% to 18.7%, the highest rate since 1993) and 20-24 year olds (+1.5%).
Although it apparently hasn't received much media attention, perhaps there is a link between the rising unemployment rate for teenagers and the pending 12% increase in the minimum wage next month. Since we have evidence that consumers respond to higher gas prices by driving less, wouldn't it also be the case that employers of unskilled workers would respond to 12% increases in wages for unskilled workers by hiring fewer unskilled workers?

Of course, any good Leftist would tell you that minimum wage increases don't result in unemployment because business just eats the additional costs.

Of course, any economist could've told everyone that this was going to be the result - and many did.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler