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In my estimation, the failure of our publicly-run education system is a devastating rebuke of the model.  I do not think progressives should be taken seriously until they come to terms with the widespread scale of this failure, stop trying to patch up or throw more money at our broken system, reverse course and support ending the monopoly on public funds for education.

It seems to me that a quality education system is way more important for this country’s future than other issues that get more sensationalist attention–like say, climate change.  Yet progressives and their government-run schools continue to fail us badly. And because their politics is beholden to the public school teacher’s unions, they continue to resist sane market-based reforms that are our only sure way out of this.

So I ask you: what will it take? How badly must our publicly-run schools fail and how much money must we continue to waste on them before we reintroduce competition and end the mad monopoly on public funds?

Gherald filed this under: , ,  


LONDON—Embattled BP officials assured the public Thursday that despite the setbacks of the past month, the company was still “fiercely committed” to remaining an enormously powerful moneymaking industrial conglomerate. “We promise the good people of Louisiana or Texas or wherever that this horrific oil spill will not, even for a moment, stop us from pursuing unspeakably massive profits,” BP spokesman Reginald Clacton-Thorpe told reporters. “We are even now working around the clock to make this historic PR disaster as painless for us as possible.” Clacton-Thorpe stressed that “neither the terrible errors of our past nor the inevitably worse ones of our future” would affect that ultimate mission.
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Gherald filed this under: ,  

Some classic Al Giordano – and he makes a very good point:

I don’t know how to cap the big oil leak in the Gulf and truth is neither do you. And even if it is capped in five minutes from now, the damage is already done.

That said, as a longtime vocal opponent of off shore oil drilling, and proponent of renewable energy, I wish to publicly disassociate myself from all the newly concerned voices screaming at the top of their lungs that the government must “do something” if they don’t come with concrete suggestions for what exactly can be done. They do not represent me and please don’t ever confuse me with them, okay?

Without an easy solution in sight, and with the knowledge sinking in of just how harmful this oil gusher will be to the Gulf of Mexico, its shores, its fishing and tourism and quality of life, a lot of people seem to be screaming that somebody should yell louder and point their fingers harder.

Okay, just this once, I will point fingers. You know who is to blame in addition to BP and the government that allowed this oil rig to be built? Every single one of us that ever drove a car, got in an airplane, or drank from a plastic bottle (they’re made from petroleum, too). The heavier our “carbon footprints” the greater each of us is to blame. Go yell at yourself now. [...]

But you know what? Even though I would be somewhat justified in yelling and pointing fingers at you, I’m only being tongue in cheek about it here to make a point. Yelling doesn’t solve anything. And it sure won’t plug the leak or make anyone else do it faster, because nobody has yet figured out a surefire way to do it. But they sure ain’t gonna think faster with you yelling in their ears.

Yelling is for panic, and panic is for losers. In the movies, you know, the scary ones where soldiers or zombies or aliens come and kill whomever they find in their path, don’t you remember who always gets eaten first? The idiot who screams hysterically! That’s who you are behaving like today. And if you keep thinking that screaming at others to yell louder and share your misery aloud is going to save the earth, you and the rest of your pestilent species are already doomed. The earth will carry on. It’s you who won’t. And at least it’ll be a lot quieter around here, then.

I would just like to go on the record and say that it’s pretty amazing that Sarah Palin and Keith Olbermann both seem to agree on one point: “ZOMG, the government ISN’t Doing enufffff!!!1111!!!!!

Yes, all of you kvetchers, please do tell me how the government could be doing much of anything to, you know, plug the fucking leak?

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I thought so.

Metavirus filed this under: , , , ,  

By my headline, I’m not suggesting that liberals are more prone to agree with libertarianism, it’s just that I have generally found my liberal friends and favorite liberal bloggers to be much more capable of at least understanding what true libertarianism really, you know, means.

See, e.g., my favorite former Bush-lover turned libtard John Cole today:

I still don’t understand why there are caps at all:
Republican Senator James Inhofe has stepped up to the plate yet again for big oil, pledging a Republican filibuster against legislation offered by New Jersey’s Robert Menendez that would completely lift the $75 million liability cap currently protecting big oil companies from claims of economic damage from oil spills.
Again, it would seem to me the free market solution is to lift the caps, and if it becomes more pricey to drill oil safely, then companies will just have to pass that cost on to the public, who will, as they did when prices for fuel skyrocketed during the Bush years, adjust their behaviors and purchases accordingly. Additionally, auto companies who have made advances in fuel efficient cars and companies which have already worked to lower their fuel consumption will reap the competitive advantage they deserve. And should deepwater drilling become prohibitively expensive, oil companies will re-examine fields they before thought were too expensive, but now are, by comparison, cost-effective.
I really don’t understand why anyone thinks the current Republican Party and libertarianism have anything of true substance in common — they don’t.

And, for no particular reason:


A brief rant. I am generally loathe to link to that fetid abyss of Washington media insider-ism known as Politico, but this article really appalled me more than usual and my object of derision isn’t the reporter so much as the whole point of this event and the White House staff/president that orchestrated it.

President Barack Obama battled with Senate Republicans in a tense closed-door meeting Tuesday, facing tough criticism from his GOP adversaries — including John McCain — on issues ranging from health care to border security.

Senators and other sources inside the meeting described the gathering as “testy” and “direct” — and Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) accused Obama of acting two-faced by asking for GOP support on regulatory reform only to push forward with a bill supported mainly by Democrats. Others felt that the meeting may have made already tense relations between the two parties even worse.

“The more he talked, the more he got upset,” Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) said. “He needs to take a valium before he comes in and talks to Republicans and just calm down, and don’t take anything so seriously. If you disagree with someone, it doesn’t mean you’re attacking their motives — and he takes it that way and tends then to lecture and then gets upset.”

The White House said that Obama made a plea for bipartisanship on some of the country’s most pressing issues — and he urged Republicans to stand up to their base and compromise with the Democratic Party.

Assuming the president’s time is valuable, what is the point of attending an off-the-record, or at least media-excluded publicity event with your political opponents in an election year? Honestly, I’m looking for answers here. Does it help Obama? It’s not televised, so we don’t get to see him dissect his opponents as he did the House Republicans previously or even have a substantive public debate as was done (at times) at the Health Care Summit in February (or as is done almost daily with members of Congress inside the White House). Does it allow Republicans to leak to their media accomplices like Politico who write stories about how testy and “thin-skinned” Obama was? Check. Does it let John McCain pretend he’s still running for president? Check. Even McConnell, while he seemed to enjoy lunch and appreciated that the head of the executive branch had to trundle down to the Senate to visit the minority caucus on their own turf, admitted nothing was agreed to or could be agreed to at this meeting. Will it stop Republicans or creatures of the Washington media from saying Obama isn’t trying hard enough to work with Republicans? You are hilarious.

Look, I’m not against the parties having dialogue and as I mentioned they do so every day, but in an election year where the benefits of compromise for your opponents are near zero and the opposing party’s base thinks you are the Anti-Christ, it would seem one could find a more productive use of the president’s time. Instead of trying to make Republicans comfortable with you, why not spend more time trying to get your base excited about voting in November?

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Every press release I read that comes from House Minority Leader John Boehner that is related to an Obama initiative vis a vis the economy effectively says the same thing. As a public service, I hereby provide to Mr. Boehner’s press secretary a handy fill-in-the-blank money quote:

Unfortunately, the administration’s call for another $[Insert real or imagined number here] billion to pad the coffers of [Insert name of the recipient, which you would have supported giving money to had there been a Republican in the White House] will only make [Repeat name] more dependent on the federal government and more vulnerable when the federal funding explosion disappears. This latest bailout proposal promotes the same flawed logic as the failed ‘stimulus’ bill that has contributed to a record $1.5 trillion deficit and left one in every 10 Americans from our workforce out of work.”
Civic duty!

P.S. The quote above was adapted from a release in response to a Democratic proposal to avert a crisis in state and local budgets that would otherwise result in the layoffs of tens of thousands of teachers nationwide. Damn fat-cat teachers; always suckling on the gubment teat!!

Metavirus filed this under: , , ,  

Here’s a super-cute picture of my new nephew Kai in the arms of my adorable niece Maddy: