"There are men, in all ages, who mean to exercise power usefully; but who mean to exercise it. They mean to govern well; but they mean to govern. They promise to be kind masters; but they mean to be masters." Daniel Webster

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Monday, March 29, 2010

Did John Lewis Smear Tea Partiers, Part II

Andrew Breitbart challenges him to prove his claims.

Meanwhile, video of the incident where a protestor spit on another congressman shows it was less a deliberate assault than it was a case of bad manners.

Dancing with the Stars, Week 2

Last week, before the first episode, I joked about Buzz Aldrin finishing second. Well, unless he really ups his performance tonight, the real question is whether he'll be the first or second person voted off.

The two front runners after the first episode were a Pussycat Doll and a figure skater. In other words, a couple of ringers.

Oh, and no Karina this year. Bummer.

Brad DeLong Is Still an Ethics Free Partisan Hack And a Clueless Idiot (Part of a Series)

Mario Rizzo has the latest. Steven Landsburg has more, with some interesting economics. The commentors on Landsburg's post, who've just discovered DeLong regularly deletes comments critical of himself on his blog, are precious.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

French Health Care

Mathieu Bedard sends Cafe Hayek some photos from his son's recent stay in a French hospital.

Mexico's Drug War

A column in the Wall Street Journal looks at how it's being fueled by prohibition in the United States.

Napolitano and Rockwell Discuss National ID

Monday, March 22, 2010

Japan's Internal Decay

A photographer documents the country's dying rural areas.

Dancing with the Stars

It premieres tonight. Buzz Aldrin is one of the contestants. Wouldn't it be ironic if he finished second?

Sorry. I had to say that. CNN has already taken my moonwalker line.

Erin Andrews will also be a contestant this season.

Smoke and Mirrors

Mercer Univesity economist Scott Beaulier looks at proposals to raise Georgia's cigarette tax.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Today's New York Times. Front Page, Above the Fold

Steve Sailer says it was dedicated to this story.

There Are No Rules Here

Did John Lewis Smear the Tea Partiers?

The Georgia congressman claims a bunch of them called him a nigger. The problem with making such charges these days is that video is often available that shows the incident. In this case ther's not just one but at least two different videos I can't hear any racial slurs.

Was Lewis just making it up? Did he just hear what he expected to hear? Or was there maybe one lone inddividual whose voice only he could hear? Politico reports that one indvidual did direct a homophobic slur against Barney Frank and was quickly shouted down by the rest of the crowd.

UPDATE: I read now that Lewis has compared the events of yesterday to what happened in Selma 45 years ago, back when he was beaten almost to death. The only question now is whether he is delusional or dishonest.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

All You Need to Know About the Democratic Party

If you attend the 2010 California Democratic Partyy Convention, it will cost you $60 to see Arianna Huffington but only $20 to see Los Lobos.

HT: Mickey Kaus

2010 Census: Are You American?

From Mark Krikorian at National Review's The Corner:

Fully one-quarter of the space on this year's form is taken up with questions of race and ethnicity, which are clearly illegitimate and none of the government's business (despite the New York Times' assurances to the contrary on today's editorial page). So until we succeed in building the needed wall of separation between race and state, I have a proposal. Question 9 on the census form asks "What is Person 1's race?" (and so on, for other members of the household). My initial impulse was simply to misidentify my race so as to throw a monkey wrench into the statistics; I had fun doing this on the personal-information form my college required every semester, where I was a Puerto Rican Muslim one semester, and a Samoan Buddhist the next. But lying in this constitutionally mandated process is wrong. Really — don't do it.

Instead, we should answer Question 9 by checking the last option — "Some other race" — and writing in "American." It's a truthful answer but at the same time is a way for ordinary citizens to express their rejection of unconstitutional racial classification schemes. In fact, "American" was the plurality ancestry selection for respondents to the 2000 census in four states and several hundred counties.

So remember: Question 9 — "Some other race" — "American". Pass it on.

Zimbabwe in Pictures

Aerial photographs show what damage Robert Mugabe's theft of farm land has done to the country.

Friday, March 19, 2010

How to Spot a Real Libertarian

With everyone from Glen Beck to Bill Maher claiming to be a libertarian, David Boaz offers some advice on how to distinguish a real libertarian from a conservative masquerading as one.

Neo-Cons Target Rand Paul

Matt Welch and Daniel McCarthy have the story.

Linda McMahon Leading Her Republican Rivals in the Polls

As if that isn't sad enough, Peter Schiff is in third place.

Happy Birthday, Moorfield Storey!

Don't know who he is? Damon Root tells you why you should.

How Cananda Avoided the Mortgage Meltdown

Less government.

Ron Paul on a National ID Card

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Republican Hindsight Is Golden

Rep. Dana Rohrbacher says most Republicans now agree that invading Iraq was a mistake. But don't worry they'll get it right with Iran.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

RIP Alex Chilton

I believe he was just 16 when he recorded this:

UPDATE: More from Brian Doherty.

Texas Two Step

Michael Moynihan looks at what happens when the government controls the school system.

Questions for Barack Obama

Paul Theroux has a few for the president.

Happy St. Patrick's Day

I'd never even heard of Celtic Woman until a few months ago, but it seems every time I flip by the PBS station they are on. They seem to have filled the void in pledge drives that used to be filled by Peter, Paul and Mary.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Are Some Races More Equal Than Others?

Abigail Thernstrom and Tim Fay look at black-on-Asian violence in Philadelphia schools and the government's reaction.

Monday, March 15, 2010

A Hall of Fame for Losers

Georgia has spent a lof of money over the last 20 years on various halls of fame. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that it doesn't have a lot to show for its efforts.

Hate Mail from Third Graders

That's what this guy gets.

HT: Tyler Cowen.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Saturday, March 13, 2010

RIP Heinz Stahlschmidt

He was a German naval demolitions expert ordered to blow up the port of Bourdeaux in the closing days of World War II. Instead, he blew up the Germans. Germany declared him a traitor and struck his name from naval records. That didn't stop the French resistance from claiming credit for the attack, nor the French government from trying to execute him after the war for his service with the German navy.

"Despite it all, in the same circumstances I'd do it all over again," Mr. Stahlschmidt told Reuters. "But to some people, I'm still just a 'boche' [a derogatory term in French for Germans]."


A little tag team action.

Friday, March 12, 2010

I Don't Want to Make Rio Lobo

Virginia Postrel points to an interview with Quentin Tarantino.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Iraq's Cosmetic Election

Daniel Pipes sounds a surprising Note of realism.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

"Ethnic" Violence

In The American Conservative, Philip Jenkins looks at the rapid growth of Christianity in traditionally Muslim areas and what it means for the future.

Monday, March 8, 2010

China's Coolest Man

Is he a mentally ill vagrant?

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Newspaper Photographer Fired for Altering Pictures

It's a tough job market out there, especially in journalism. I wish him luck.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Because They Are Russian?

Cathy Young asks why some Russians seem so concerned about the country's poor performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Me? I want to know how they found room for every halfway famous Canadian during the closing ceremonies but Gordon Lightfoot was nowhere to be found. Come on? They had William Shatner and Michael J. Fox doing lame standup, but they didn't have the time for Gord to perform "The Canadian Railroad Trilogy"?

Bring Back the Robber Barons

Daniel Henninger tells us how to get the economy back on track.

Federal Workers Make More Than the Rest of Us

A lot more. USA Today has the numbers.

HT: Katherine Mangu-Ward.

Why High-Speed Rail Will Go Nowhere Fast

The latest video from Reason.

Iraq's Election Off to Shaky Start

Violence? Fraud? I'm shocked.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Little People

The New York Times reports:

Chen Mingjing’s entrepreneurial instincts vaulted him from a peasant upbringing to undreamed-of wealth, acquired in ventures ranging from making electric meters to investing in real estate. But when he was 44, the allure of making money for money’s sake began to wane. He wanted to run a business that accomplished some good.

And so last September, Mr. Chen did what any socially aware entrepreneur might do: He opened a theme park of dwarfs, charging tourists about $9 a head to watch dozens of dwarfs in pink tutus perform a slapstick version of “Swan Lake” along with other skits.

Maybe I Should Move Back

Los Angeles has its lowest murder rate since 1957.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Lessons from the Greek Budget Debacle

My old pal Daniel Mitchell looks at the steps to ruin.

Popular Mechanics on Toyota

The magazine says the government and the media have give the company a undeserved beating.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Different Kind of Rebel

Will Admiral Ackbar become the Univesity of Mississippi's new mascot?

The Karate Kid

OK, they are remaking "The Karate Kid." I'm not really sure why except Will Smith is producing it, and it stars his son, so it looks like an attempt to make the kid a star.

I saw the trailer for it last night. It's apparently set in China and Jackie Chan plays the Mr. Miyagi character, so shouldn't it be called "The Kung Fu Kid"?

Anyway, Jaden Smith looks to be about 10 years old. And here's the really stupid part. The movie (and trailer) recreates the scene where Miyagi saves Daniel-san from the Cobra Kai kids. In the original, the kids were a bunch of high schoolers (played in Hollywood fashion by men in their early 20s), who were bigger than Miyagi. In the trailer, the kids attacking Jaden Smith look to be about his age. I repeat. Jackie Chan beats up a bunch of 10-year-old kids.

Did anyone think about that before they shot the scene, much less decided to include it in the trailer?

Shut Up and Read a Book

Ron Radosh looks at contemporary conservatism.

Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing

Monday, March 1, 2010

Pale Is the New Tan

Arrgh, my eyes.

Is Census Data Strictly Confidential?

Of course not.

Darn Those Latinos

The United Nations says Latin American countries are undermining the drug war by legaliizing drugs.

The Town That Tried to Ban a Bench

Yeah, it was in the South.

HT: Jesse Walker

Medicare and Obamacare

Here's another great letter from Don Boudreaux, one of my former grad school professors.

UPDATE: Link fixed.

Japan's Weirdest Museums

The parasite museum seems interesting.

Short on Coherence?

Arnold Kling takes issue with an article by Jonathan Rauch i linked to earlier.

Oh, Canada

Why is Canada's banking system much more resilient than that of the United States?