We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Friday, March 6. 2015
Home for Purim - Review: Robert Alter’s ‘Strong as Death is Love’
Scientists say jaw bone fragment dating back 2.8 million years evidence of earlier evolution
The Misguided War on Rice - That box of Uncle Ben’s in your pantry is likely a lot safer than Consumer Reports would lead you to believe.
We like Basmati rice
US food sales: Restaurants now equal to stores
What is Red Velvet Cake? Just a mildly-flavored chocolate cake with food coloring and buttermilk instead of milk
Kipnis: Sexual Paranoia Strikes Academe:
People, Justice, Common Sense Prevail in Capitol Hill Sledding - Despite efforts by police to crack down on fun, much sledding happened in D.C. on Thursday
Who Wants to Live in Detroit? Four decades after 'white flight' began, tens of thousands of African-Americans have now left as well. What does that mean for the city's future?
Kotkin: Plutocrats run Washington
Harry Reid Secured Subsidies for Aides’ Donors
Charles Koch, Liberal Crusader? He’s one of the left’s biggest bogeymen. Now he’s teaming up with George Soros
The Era of the Drama Queens: Every Crisis Is a Triumph
The right to be comfortable? - Condell below.
Clinton reportedly told State Dept. personnel not to use private email
Clintons think they are royalty, above all rules. Fact is, they are sleazy low-lifes. For lefties, give me Bernie Sanders who at least is honest.
Image below from Why Hillary Will Abandon Her Run for the Presidency
Justice Ginsburg, Concurring in the Administration's Judgment
Ginsberg and Breyer care more about leftist policy than about the Constitution. They are rather open about that, but it's not their job. Thus I have no respect for them.
World has always been dangerous. Stability is not always the best thing anyway.
From honor to shame - 8 YEARS AGO, THEY WERE ACCUSED OF KILLING INNOCENT AFGHANS. CLEARED OF WRONGDOING, THE FIGHT TO CLEAR THEIR NAMES GOES ON
Thursday, March 5. 2015
Welcome but rare - a day without snow tomorrow. But it's snowing now, and will be 6 degrees F tonite. In Yankeeland, it just doesn't quit. Cold, too. I heard a lady on the radio today explaining how the cold and snow are proof of global warming. I won't complain, but we're running out of places to pile the snow. Lovely especially when falling hard and you have a fireplace and central heat indoors. Maybe I am nuts, but I love a good winter. I hate wimpy winters even though we must all pray for global warming for the long-term benefit of humanity.
The HQ today:
Good grief. Surely the lefties must have a decent candidate somewhere.
I'm sure important lefty big donors are already looking for a candidate with at least some honor and integrity.
"Emotion" is sort-of an artificial construct, is it not? It - whatever it is - can rarely be separated from cognition, perception, ideas, and all other mental processes and biological instincts. We easily can identify, in ourselves, lustful desire ("urge to merge"), rage, despair, joy, fear and anxiety - but these extremes are rare and still more expressible by poets and musicians than by scientists.
Dear Foolish and Gullible Americans, Net Neutrality is Not Your Friend
Why I love my Leica
What Depression Does to Our Minds When It Attacks
Doctor shortage: With regard to health care the majority of the managerial class is locked into 19th century ideas about how to micromanage an economy
The Sage of Omaha Emerges Over 50 Years As Sometimes Clueless
One of the most annoying traits of left-wingers is their tendency to assume that you, too, must share their political views.
Robots are hurting middle class workers, and education won’t solve the problem, Larry Summers says
Redstate: The Constitution has Failed
The Latest Clinton Scandal Is Quintessentially Hillary
Media Liberals Struggle to Spin Hillary’s Email Scandal
The Untouchables: Government Employee Can't Be Fired Despite Watching 6 Hours Of Porn A Day At Work
Putin’s Desire for Failure
Wednesday, March 4. 2015
Kevin Williamson has the ability to take on any topic and go straight to the heart of the matter. A guote from his piece about government roads:
Partly because of our temperamental skepticism, and partly from knowing the history of science (consisting of one discarded theory after another), we are interested in thinking about the idea (or is it a religion) of Scientism.
This is a challenging essay, The Folly of Scientism, but worth two or three readings. It begins:
One more quote:
When I was young, Sweet Briar had already evolved from an elite finishing school to a serious college for female children of the gentry, and especially those with horses. Skidmore used to do the same. Their goal had been to produce excellent young wives for gentry men; literate, infused with a dose of southern charm, graciousness and manners (even though at least half were from the north), prepared to help any kids with homework, to pour tea, to read a book each week, to go on fox hunts, to shoot shotguns and rifles, to throw a dinner party, to be equipped to run family affairs and to handle social relations delicately, to run Junior Leagues, church organizations, and garden clubs - and to discuss any topic intelligently with a hubby, from the sciences to art history to international issues.
Women well-equipped to create beautiful family lives for the gentry class and to raise lots of fine kids and future good citizens and future good parents.
The lovely college mostly kept to that mission until they responsibly recognized that the market was running against them. Sad. Many families over the past 100 years are grateful for their mission. Charming campus, with sweet, genteel and refined young women. It all fades into history and fond memory.
I admit I am old-fashioned. I married an extremely-bright Randolph-Macon girl. Lucky me to catch a southern gal from the horsey set. She is still ticked off about the War Between the States, but, thank God, she likes me and my friends up here in Yankeeland. Hostess of the Century, I think. I just show up, and there's a fun party with interesting folks. I pour, and enjoy the bright, interesting people she collects and who are drawn to her sparkling self.
3 to 5 Cups of Coffee a Day May Lower Risk of Heart Attacks
The New York Times On Pain Drugs - Wrong, Naive Or Misleading?
Many consider pain meds to be the greatest contribution of modern medicine
Far from proving that gluten sensitivity is real, at best, what the current study tells us is that only a small fraction of people who think they have NCGS may actually have the condition, if indeed it exists at all.
As skeptics, we doubt that NCGS exists except in imagination
Proper English Grammar Is Now Racist -fixed
Yesterday math was racist, today English too. What next?
The Great Pat Condell Confronts Progressive Universities - "This right to be comfortable is very selective, and only extends to those who hold the correct opinion."
"the immigration fiasco raises the larger question of whether House Republicans can even function as a majority."
Perpetual Grievance - The latest advancement in victimhood links “queer theory” with illegal immigration.
Jezebel Reporter Reluctantly Apologizes for Scott Walker Accusation
What Was Hillary Trying to Hide in Her Personal Email Account?
Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail address at State reinforces everything people don’t like about her
Hillary Clinton hasn’t even announced her bid for president next year, and already scandals are erupting around her.
Would you invest in a Cuba fund?
Egyptian Government Closes 27,000 MOSQUES in Move to Fight Terrorism
Tuesday, March 3. 2015
Bigger than ISIS? Maybe or maybe not, but not as hair-raising. Bigger than Hillary using her personal email? Absolutely, but not as top-of-mind or intriguing. Bigger than Immigration Reform? Probably not, but interestingly the topics which are involved would play a role in hopefully reducing the influx of illegals by opening up markets more.
We are smarter than you, and we know what's best for you. Don't worry that you never voted for us, or that we are completely unaccountable. It's in your best interest.
Ultimately, it's a kind of boring topic. Which is why I like it, because it involves politics, law and economics. Economics being 'the dismal science', Net Neutrality has often been misconstrued and misunderstood in the media because it doesn't attract much thought beyond a populist angle. After all, most reporters and bloviators who comment on the topic work for companies that will benefit from Net Neutrality. Of course, they were never harmed without it, but hey, these populists are busy looking out for your best interests. Because, of course, nobody else will and you're simply not smart enough to know better. I'll be clear, I work for a company that supports Net Neutrality and conceivably benefits from it. Which is one reason the small level of anonymity which blogging provides is beneficial when writing pieces like this.
The passage, last week, by the FCC of a policy which treats broadband providers as "common carriers" under Title II of the Telecommunications Act basically means they are now utilities. Not completely, but close enough to make that claim without much disagreement. But what sparked this vote, why is it needed (or why do populists feel it is needed), and what does it potentially do?
Continue reading "Net Neutrality"
When people lose family bonds and family help, they pathetically turn to government, and government is always happy to make you dependent on them. It is a sick and sickening cycle of money and power, and weakens human spirit and integrity. Where's my money?
I am fortunate that my clan is tight, and from immigrant cultures (Poland + Italy), too proud and grateful to to America to look to government for anything. We were taught that freedom is our precious gift, and nothing more can or should be asked for. It's an American thing which relatively-recent immigrant (1920s) families appreciate best.
Today? I am not sure. We have a decadent gimme culture, it seems.
Posted by The News Junkie in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 17:30 | Comments (2) | Trackbacks (0)
We've had a few good times in Mexico, visiting ruins as ancient as Egypt's and fishing in Cabo. And great food, especially seafood, but I think we have checked it off our bucket list for now. Is Mexico (outside of the bad neighborhoods of Mexico City and the border towns) safe for travelers? Completely safe, and the people are wonderful, friendly, warm, full of life and good cheer. The opposite of Yankees.
Today, a thanks to the excellent (English-speaking) doctors in Cabo San Lucas who saved my father-in-law's life this week from an unfortunate cardiac event. The in-laws have liked to escape the northeast to Cabo for a couple of months each winter for many years, with all of their retired pals and new friends. Puerto Vallarta right across the Gulf is good, too, and more antique. Many Americans have houses there.
Also, thanks to the cousins from Boston who had been luckily visiting them with kids at the time, and managed everything with us via phone and email.
He is stable and on a chartered medical plane at this moment up to the amazing Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center at UC San Diego Medical Center, and Mrs. BD just hopped a plane from a snowy NY to beautiful SD to keep my mother-in-law company. I am sure the tough old guy will be fine and back up here to fight the snow fairly soon.
Thank God for family. We'd all be lost in this world without them. Who else do we turn to first?
Pic is a crowded Pacific beach in Cabo from one of our beach hikes
I was thrilled and surprised to see one pass by this week, low over my garden. Must be cold up north. I am sure he or she is hurrying north to nest in the snow.
The Snowy Owl breeds around the world at the northern edge of the tundra. Depending on food supply (lemmings and similar rodents), they regularly migrate further south during the winter.
I have only seen a handful of them in New England although they are regular visitors to tundra-like, wide-open places in New England and other areas of the northern US: golf courses, marshes, beaches, large fields and meadows. The last one I saw was sitting on a snow-covered sand dune in Montauk, L.I., but I have seen them perched on farmhouse roofs. They are diurnal owls, and usually perch on a high spot to watch for the movement of little critters.
You can read more about the Snowy Owl here.
Boola Boola. College sure has changed:
Wesleyan: With so many marginalized groups on campus, one wonders who is left to do the discriminating and oppressing.
Are there no normal, balanced, wholesome, smart white males there who play sports, dig cute chicks, and like beer? They can be assigned the oppressor job.
Where in the US can you buy alcohol in grocery stores?
Jobs Data Don’t Prove College Is Worth the Cost
The Pathetic Man-Boys of Lena Dunham’s Girls - Mark Judge at Acculturated pinpoints the popular HBO show's fatal flaw.
WHY DO WOMEN PREFER TO DATE MEN WITH TWICE THEIR INCOME?
Why do men find billionaire heiresses attractive?
Should Athletes Eat Fat or Carbs?
Want to Sell Your House? Don’t Do These 4 Things
Don't Defund, Just Dismantle the Department of Homeland Security
Upset about inequality? How about thanking Fred Smith instead
Related: Breaking Bad (Debt)
Man, do I agree with that. When do government fixes ever work?
Hillary Clinton Used Personal Email at State Dept., Possibly Breaking Rules
Turmoil at Clinton Foundation
Douthat: Hillary and the Machine
Seven Reasons Why Marco Rubio Should Not Run for President - Stay in the Senate, Marco, your country needs you
Erickson: My Candid Candidate Thoughts After CPAC
Zimbabwe’s Mugabe condemns ‘white’ safaris, eats baby elephant at birthday bash
Despite Russian Warnings, US Will Deploy A Battalion To Ukraine By The End Of The Week
Insane. I see no compelling national interest there.
THE PLOT TO FREE NORTH KOREA WITH SMUGGLED EPISODES OF ‘FRIENDS
Monday, March 2. 2015
From the article:
Indeed. How long did many gullible people avoided eating eggs and beef when it's been clear for over a decade that the idea was nonsense? People didn't get the message that the cholesterol fuss was just myth.
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:29 | Comments (4) | Trackbacks (0)
Climatic Jihad? February 28, 20Climate Crisis extremists attack experts who challenge claims of imminent climate Armageddon
We may be skeptical most of the time about most things, but we do pray for a return to the climate of the 1300s when Greenland was green and there were vineyards all over England
Concentrated solar does set birds on fire and Wind turbines club birds so Environmentalists make stuff up about nuclear energy
We warm them up so they are comfortable to get into - and to make sure the battery is working
Albert Berry. First parachutist
Since ancient times philosophy has tried to cure us of anxiety. But worry is an important part of being a moral person
Cost of apparel has not risen since 1990
Private Bank Survey: Where to Invest Cash Now
So it seems that an autistic boy in Florida was about to turn six...
Campus sex assaults should be handled by police
The Media: When You Attack Obama, You’re Attacking Them
Politics and $: There are far more significant payoffs happening than the McDonnells’.
CPAC Panel on Family: ‘Father’s Day Will Be Hate Speech’
Trigonometry Is Racist!
How’s this for a working definition of a “libertarian”?
It's sort-of OK, but I'd simplify it to something like "Somebody who insists on individual freedom being the major factor in any policy equation."
Jeb Bush’s America needs immigrants with computer skills and as domestic workers?
Jeb Bush Tries, Fails to Explain American Exceptionalism at CPAC - And then he waded into really awkward territory.
And that of the free individual, small - and handcuffed, ignorant, dependent, and in fear of government
A World Transforming - As China and the United States contemplate how to shape their mutual relations, each is bound to learn something discomfiting about itself.
Sunday, March 1. 2015
That's why we use only Vanguard Funds and ETFs, just as Buffet does with his funds for his family (he gives away most of his wealth to charity and is extremely stingy with his kids). Very cheap funds and ETFs. Only rarely do we purchase individual equities or bonds, and we do not have the wealth for venture funds or hedge funds.
Vanguard can help you with rational planning. They are not trying to get rich from you, and I almost consider them to be a public service.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 18:01 | Comments (2) | Trackbacks (0)
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