Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Battle Above

Well you've all had time to view it either live or on DVR.  Did you see the 60 minutes episode on Space Command and Satellite Defense?

And if so, what do you think?

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

GOP Unveils New Name, Symbol

Ball-less Plucked Chicken

GOP Rebranding

In a nod to the modern-day state of affairs, the GOP has ditched the elephant as its symbol.  Party Chairman Rancid Phlebitis also announced a name change.  The erstwhile Grand Old Party of Lincoln would forthwith be known as the Gutless Offensive Oaf Party, or GOOP for short.  The new GOOP symbol is the Capon.

 "Who were we kidding anyway," a baggy-eyed Senator Lindsay Graham sighed.  "A ball-less, plucked chicken is the perfect symbol, and GOOP is a pretty fair description of our party philosophy."

Conservatives React

Phyllis Schlafly, who at 216 years old is the party's most venerable and articulate spokesperson, condemned the move, as did female firebrand Sarah Palin, who was out camping with Ted Nugent when reporters tracked her down.

Upon hearing the news, Palin grabbed Uncle Ted's Luitpold-scoped .460 Weatherby and vowed to "shoot the balls off of every last lily-livered retreating RINO!"

Meanwhile, back in the District of Criminals, reaction varied.

When reporters tracked down Senator Orville Snatch of Utah, he looked skyward and opined, "What does the GOOP stand for? Does anybody know? Can any of my fellow GOOPers state our foundational principles?  We gained the House majority in 2010, and took over the Senate in 2014.  What's changed?"

We tracked down Doctor Phil, and he agreed with Senator Snatch.  "When the GOOPers do try to stand up for principles, they shoot themselves in the face with their own cannons. They are horribly inept at 21st Century communication strategy."

Reverend Billy Jim Holler, a Southern Baptist minister and conservative activist, shook his head at the "party I no longer know."

Rev. Billy Jim Holler
Then he scared away Fox News reporter Shepard Smith when he unleashed fire and brimstone on the "gutless, nutless wonders of GOOP." 

"GOOPers are weasels who allow themselves to be painted, defined, screwed, blued and tattooed by leftwing cultural kommisars in the press, political arena, popular culture and academia! GOOPers don't know whether to shit or go blind, dammit all, so they do the easy thing!  They fall in line!"

The Reverend paused, calmed himself, then grabbed a startled CNN reporter by the lapels, smashed him on the forehead with a meaty palm, and demanded Satan come out of him as the reporter stumbled backwards into a low hedge and sent the small contingent of MSNBC kids scrambling for safety.

The Reverend kicked at the abandoned lattes dropped on the sidewalk by the retreating MSNBC cowards and continued pacing and raving, his voice a condemnatory rasp:
"So in summary, my good friends, the GOOPers have no discernible foundational philosophy that differs in any way from America's Democrat Socialist Party."
He pointed a righteous finger at the capitol and dropped into his best televangelist cadence as he paced the sidewalk and glared at the crowd.
"The GOOP-uh is but one of two taloned batwings of that satanic, rapacious creature that surveils us-uh, stalks us-uh, spares nothing and no one from its evil and pornographic gaze-uh.  This creature-uh has done squozed the LIFE out of this nation!  It's CONSUMED us!  May Almighty GAWD in Heaven and his COHORTS of angels DAMN this beast to the fiery and sulfurous depths of hell!"
President Obama Issues Statement from Bed

President Obama perusing a GOOP brochure
President Obama, on a spiritual retreat in rural Kenya, was awakened by his manservant, and the president allowed in reporters and gave them a statement from his bed:

The few GOOPers who might actually believe in the hate-filled philosophies of conservatism and free market capitalism stand stupid and inarticulate in the town square, squinting and crouching under the harsh scrutiny of correct thinking people.  We're all progressives now, and the GOOP needs to get with the program.

They can run, but they can't hide.   Unlike me, GOOPers do not know how to state their beliefs with a kind face and defend them, so we will continue to mau mau those mothers, pillory their little pisant asses, and cow the conservatives into shutting up, recanting, apologizing and doing what a good little dhimmi-republican is supposed to be doing: Going along to get along.

The president ended with a chuckle.  "I may even throw a few ducats their way when I get back."

Chicken Picture credit:

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Fascism Comes to America

This apocryphal quote has been attributed to Sinclair Lewis:
"When Fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross"
Trouble is, he probably never said it. However, real-life events give it a ring of truth. Consider we've had a president who...
"explained that a "true leader" uses the masses like "tools." He must inflame their passions with little heed for the facts. "Men are as clay in the hands of the consummate leader."
 "Government does now whatever experience permits or the times demand."
Who was that president? George W. Bush? Richard Nixon? Ronald Reagan?

No.  Those quotes all come from Democrat and Proto-Progressive Woodrow Wilson, and he did wrap his actions in the flag and the Bible.  Democrat progressives have since burned the Bible and trampled the flag, but their truth still marches on.

Modern-Day Democrat Presidents Uphold the Progressive Tradition

President Obama is merely following in Wilson's footsteps when his IRS punishes conservatives and his federal agents raid guitar factories whose owners didn't pay a big enough political bribe.

Democrat Bill Clinton carried on the progressive tradition by murdering Randy Weaver's wife and child after coercing Weaver into the illegal act of sawing down the barrel of a shotgun.

Remember when Clinton sent Janet Reno to Waco where she burned up a compound full of religious cultists in a military-style siege?

How about when Clinton's militarized agents did Castro's bidding by storming the home of Elian Gonzalez's family to resolve an administrative matter? Clinton then sent the young boy back to the Cuban communist dictatorship, and this was after Elian's mother had died at sea bringing him to freedom in America.

The New Left Unmasked in Wisconsin

But wait!  There's more!  Have you heard of the John Doe raids in Wisconsin?  Democrats used local and federal law enforcement to punish supporters of Republican Governor Scott Walker.
When Vladimir Putin sends government thugs to raid opposition offices, the world clucks its tongue. But, after all, Putin's a corrupt dictator, so what do you expect?

But in Wisconsin, Democratic prosecutors were raiding political opponents' homes and, in a worse-than-Putin twist, they were making sure the world didn't even find out, by requiring their targets to keep quiet. (Glenn Harlan Reynolds)
Here are some quotes from David French's excellent article:
“People came pouring in. For a second I thought it was a home invasion. It was terrifying. They were yelling and running, into every room in the house. One of the men was in my face, yelling at me over and over and over.”

"They were carrying a battering ram."

"Don’t call your lawyer. Don’t tell anyone about this raid. Not even your mother, your father, or your closest friends."
These fascistic lawfare raids were initiated by rogue Democrat prosecutor John Chisolm, DA of Milwaukee County and conducted under unconstitutional secrecy laws...
"...secrecy orders, conservatives were left to suffer in silence as leaks ruined their reputations, as neighbors, looking through windows and dismayed at the massive police presence, the lights shining down on targets’ homes, wondered, no doubt, What on earth did that family do?"
Do Conservative Lives Matter?

Lawsuits are winding their way through the courts, so justice for the victims of an out of control Democrat police state may yet be served. Despite smashed-in doors of innocent citizens' homes, terrifying raids and threats from the state, not one person has been prosecuted, but many still live in fear, so in one sense, it's Mission Accomplished for progressive Democrats obeying President Obamas's admonishment to punish their enemies.

The New Left is not Liberal:  Progressivism = Neofascism

There is nothing liberal about progressives.  Their actions show them to be dictatorial, left-wing statists who will turn thuggish and even murderous when their agenda is threatened. No fraud is too great, no abuse of official power too grotesque to bend the nation to their will.

Scott Walker beat them fair and square in the political arena, but they could not stand him dismantling their dirty crime syndicate that systematically ripped off taxpayers, so they launched an unconstitional lawfare campaign against his supporters.

Leftwing Progressives are dangerous, and we should never trust them with any power at any level of government.  Wisconsin's Secret War
Even Salon Agrees

Monday, April 27, 2015

Towards a Winning Platform (1)

This wasn't it.  First, what the Republican Party needs is a broadsheet, the 2012 platform was a novella.  We declared our independence and the reasons thereof on a broadsheet... the Republican Party took 62 pages to define why they should be elected.

Let me give you an example:

First the Declaration of Independence: 

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

The 2012 GOP Platform:

Their adherence to the Constitution stands in stark contrast to the antipathy toward the Constitution demonstrated by the current Administration and its Senate allies by appointing "Czars" to evade the confirmation process, making unlawful "recess" appointments when the Senate is not in recess, using executive orders to bypass the separation of powers and its checks and balances, encouraging illegal actions by regulatory agencies from the NLRB to the EPA, openly and notoriously displaying contempt for Congress, the Judiciary, and the Constitutional prerogatives of the individual States, refusing to defend the nation's laws in federal courts or enforce them on the streets, ignoring the legal requirements for legislative enactment of an annual budget, gutting welfare reform by unilaterally removing its statutory work requirement, buying senatorial votes with special favors, and evading the legal requirement for congressional consultation regarding troop commitments overseas.

No kidding, that's one sentence! 

I am sure the author or authors thought themselves quite eloquent, what's the problem?  I am also sure that the majority of voters don't have a clue as to what antipathy is... as in "we went to a nice Italian restaurant and before the main course they served a nice antipathy with prosciutto, olives, artichokes hearts, and some mozzarella cheese". 

Rule #1: KISS, yes I said it... Keep It Simple Stupid. Talk to your audience in words they understand, lawyers and English literature professors aren't going to get you elected, if they guy who changes your oil can't understand it you're wasting your time.

Rule #2: KISS, no it's not a repeat... Keep It Short & Sweet.  Face it, no one is going to read your 62 page thesis on the Republican Party. If you need a forklift to move enough paper to educate 1,000 people as to what you stand for, you're not going to educate enough people to win an election.


On Gay Marriage:

It is an assault on the foundations of our society, challenging the institution which, for thousands of years in virtually every civilization, has been entrusted with the rearing of children and the transmission of cultural values.
Melodramatic much? Like abortion, America isn't going to rise or fall on Gay Marriage.  Compare to:

The Republican Party, born in opposition to the denial of liberty, stands for the rights of individuals, families, faith communities, institutions - and of the States which are their instruments of self-government.

Do the words internally inconsistent and self-contradictory mean anything to you?  I have bad news for you, like the proverbial cake you can't have your religious fundamentalists and libertarians too. A winning platform can not be a patchwork quilt of conflicting factional demands, there needs to be a unifying theme and all platform talking points must be consistent with that theme.  So, if the States are "instruments of self-government", why is the federal government involved in the definition of marriage? 

The Republican Party needs to stop allowing themselves to be defined by the other party's talking points.  The Defense of Marriage Act was a statist solution in response to a progressive statist talking point.  Abortion is the same, you're not going to repeal Roe v. Wade, why lie on your back and try to piss up the rope?  The party needs to control not appease faction.

What do you think? What would you change, add, or eliminate from the GOP platform?  Your answers will influence the direction of this... an intended series of posts on fixing the Republican Party platform, on generating broad appeal to the American people.  This series will pop up now and then to address specific issues with the platform on a variety of subjects; taxes, military action, economics, immigration.  What do you want to talk about?

Let's remake the Republican Party, even if it's just here on this blog.


Sunday, April 26, 2015

Precedent: All it takes is an idiot.

Photo: Kabir Bakie at the Cincinnati Zoo

This Monday past in NY Manhattan Supreme Court, Justice Barbara Jaffe granted a writ of Habeas Corpus to two chimpanzees.

This is after a NY Appellate Court rejected a similar attempt with the following ruling:

“[We] conclude that a chimpanzee is not a ‘person’ entitled to the rights and protections afforded by the writ of habeas corpus. Only people can have rights, because only people can be held legally accountable for their actions.  In our view, it is this incapability to bear any legal responsibilities and societal duties that renders it inappropriate to confer upon chimpanzees the legal rights … that have been afforded to human beings.”

Animals are not people, that doesn't mean we are free to abuse them, but it does mean that they are chattel, can be bought, sold, and otherwise dealt with by their owners within the confines of the law.

What do you think? 


Science Magazine 


Saturday, April 25, 2015

Saturday Sessions: Not good enough for the Hall of Fame

A prior post on Joan Jett led to a discussion of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and who is and who isn't in it.  Here are some bands that haven't been deemed good enough to be admitted, or have been simply overlooked.

And the lists go on and on... here are a few for reference:

Future Rock Legends

Rock Snubs

Consequence of Sound

Now we all have our favorite bands that we thing ought to be in the Hall of Fame as well as bands we despise that we think ought not, but there is no arguing, there are some serious holes in the history of Rock and Roll painted by the Hall of Fame.

What do you think?  Who's there that shouldn't be and who do you think was snubbed?

Friday, April 24, 2015

Flamethrowers, Street Skiing and Tree Fishing

* - Editor's Note:  This is a repeat from 2011, updated to celebrate Summer's anticipated arrival.  Time to put away the skis, get out the fishing gear and fire up the grill.

Colorado is one of the healthiest states in the nation.  We love the outdoors.

Sanders, my long-haired former-hippie neighbor turned libertarian, is one of those people who could look 50, or 25, depending on how you turned your head and what frame of mind you were in when you were looking at him. He acts like he’s 15 and sometimes wears funny hats or severe-looking heavy framed tortoise shell eyeglasses, which produces in me an odd combination of fear and amusement.

“Dude, you gotta get one of these!” he shouted as he cranked up the flamethrower he was wielding.

We were standing on his deck imbibing 471 Small Batch Double IPA's from Breckenridge Brewery, and when the blast hit his Weber kettle grill, I had to admit it did an admirable job catching the coals on fire. I also noted the singed branches overhanging the deck, and I made a mental note of the blackened portion of his guttering and soffits. He caught my casting glances and chuckled in spite of himself.

Of course I ignored his advice. I’ve got a gas grill anyway. The guy just ain’t all there. He’s got a medical marijuana prescription due to an injury he sustained when he hit a parked car while skiing. How did that happen? It wasn’t up at Monarch, where if you got really, really wild coming down Gunbarrel it could be technically feasible; it happened (appropriately) on Race Street here in town. His girlfriend (or ‘old lady’ as he refers to her), got him a nice pair or Rossignols for Christmas and he just couldn’t wait to try them out so he strapped on and headed down the street, in boxers, a ski jacket and WW II aviators goggles an uncle had given him.  

I can’t really knock him for it. I’ve done some dumb stuff myself. Every spring I test out my fishing rods by casting down the street with a one ounce weight attached. Almost put out a mail truck’s windshield once, and I accidentally tore a birdhouse out of a neighbor’s tree with my Eagle Claw open-face. I use the extra heavies to get the bale to completely unwind, but it can have negative and far reaching consequences.

My friends and I did some street skiing back when I lived in Denver. We were supposed to take a day trip up to Keystone, but ironically, a blizzard hit and all the snow closed I-70. I don’t remember anyone wracking themselves up like Sanders did, but I do remember us falling down laughing when Dave did a nice kick turn off of Jamaica Street onto Colfax and passed a snow plow that was diligently plodding along. Jim, a jolly black-bearded cable guy from next door came out with one of those huge bottles of Jack Daniels. After some generous chugging, one of us, can’t remember who, slid into a neighbor’s house, causing her to poke her head out the front door and threaten to call the police. That’s when we decided to go back inside.

If we aren't suppose to eat animals, how come they're made of meat?

Anyway, I started out wanting to post on grilling, and I guess I got sidetracked. If you enjoy grilling, smoking or BBQing, The Ugly Brothers have some pretty good tips on their web site. Their Grillosophy Page is a treasure trove of outdoor cooking wisdom. Whether you’re new to the grill or an old hand, you’ll find some worthwhile stuff there.

I’m looking forward to smoking pork ribs, beef ribs and brisket.  I'll be grilling beer butt chicken, hot wings,  marinated pork chops, lamb burgers and chicken sausages from Sprouts Market.  How about you?  What will you be cooking up this summer?

Will you be imbibing?  How about musical instruments to accompany your grilling?  Me?  I enjoy plinking out tunes on my banjo as I watch the smoke rise and I wait for the slabs of mean to reach juicy perfection.

What about you?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Obama's Cruelty to the Innocent

Law-abiding immigrants stand in line while Obama coddles people who came here illegally
While the administration struggles to move forward with its plan to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants, the list of foreigners trying to get into the United States legally has surged to 4.4 million, over 100,000 more than last year, according to the State Department.

Those on the list either have a family member who is a U.S. citizen or green card holder, sponsoring their entry, or an employer wants them.  (Washington Examiner)
Here's my favorite part:
And more than a quarter of them, 1,323,978, are Mexican.
The State Department should strike every one of those Mexicans from the list and tell them that fellow Mexicans who were smart enough to sneak over the border used up their quota.

Other thoughts...

* We The People should force government to decrement its immigration quota by every illegal they let in.

* If Mexico continues to facilitate illegal entry into the United States, we should deny their oligarchs entry visas.  If they want to shop here, get medical care or take the family to Disney World, let them sneak in like everybody else.  Same for other countries sending their people here illegally.

*  Who is for welcoming the illegal immigrants among us?  C'mon, raise your little paws!  That includes you, congresspeople and senators.  OK.  One, two, three...  Keep those hands up.  Good.  Every one of you who support welcoming illegal immigrants must sign up to take care of a family, house them in your home, teach them English and support them until they can get on their feet.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Vote Hillary, because She's Entitled, Damn You!

The GOP had their first group gaggle in New Hampshire this weekend, and nooze outlets like AP characterized their discussions of foreign policy as "bickering," but let's move on to more important topics.

What is it about Hillary that voters find so attractive?

Her status as faithful wife to a serial and flamboyant philanderer?

The Rose Law Firm billing records?

The purloined FBI files of the Clinton enemies?

Her skill at playing the futures market?

Her gross incompetence and callous disregard for human life as Secretary of State?

Perhaps it's her metallic voice, bereft of all human warmth that makes even a personal story sound like a cold, stern lecture?

Maybe it's her flat-eyed stare that looks like it belongs on the face of a space alien staring at you through the window of a flying saucer.

Or is her soulless stare more like that of a psychopathic stone-cold killer?

Could any Democrats out there in Blogistan explain it to me?

Here's some great sHrillary sound from The Savage Nation:

Do we really want eight years of this?  Can anyone defeat her?

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Hope Sinks

Ames News

A human tragedy has occurred in the Mediterranean
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Francis, speaking after some 700 migrants were feared dead in the Mediterranean, on Sunday appealed to the international community to take swift and decisive action to avoid more tragedies.


"I make a heartfelt appeal to the international community to react decisively and quickly to see to it that such tragedies are not repeated," he said, before asking the crowd to pray "for these brothers and sisters." (Yahoo News)
Our globe is pockmarked with cauldrons of human misery, oppression, criminality and despair. People there hope for a better life in clearly superior European and North American lands. What are we to do?

Bribery Works:
In 2008, the-then Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Gadhafi signed an historic friendship agreement in which Italy promised to invest $5 billion in Libyan infrastructure and Gadhafi promised to close what he described as a "spigot" of migrants. (CNN)
  Five billion was cheap compared to what Italy grapples with now.

Taking a hard line also slows the flow:
For a time, almost all migrant arrivals came from Tunisia, just 70 miles from the Italian island of Lampedusa. Because Italy sent most of those migrants who did not qualify for political asylum back to Tunisia, the flow eventually tapered off. And once a new Tunisian government was in place, after the Arab Spring, Italy signed an accord with Tunisia in which they promised to help patrol Tunisia's ports.(CNN)
Humanitarianism Abets Criminality
"Proactive Search and Rescue missions" by EU countries "were halted last October, despite saving an estimated 100,000 lives, amid fears that the operation was encouraging smugglers and migrants to organise more trips. (The Independent)
This highlights a sad irony that plays out on the Mexican border as well. Our humanitarian efforts end up supporting human traffickers and attracting more people to risk their lives to come here.

What else can Western Nations do?

* Punish the rich and the governing oligarchs by denying them travel visas. Trap them in their own nations with their teeming hordes and force them to make improvements. As it is now, the oligarchs of these stinking cesspools use the west as their safety valve.

* Return of Colonialism. Those miserable creatures cannot govern themselves, so perhaps its time to pick up the white man's burden once again.  (it's a literary reference, not a declaration of racial superiority, so spare us the mock outrage)

* Renew Western sponsorship of iron-fisted military regimes to restore order in these broken societies

* 100% return policy. No one caught sneaking in stays. Period.

What are your ideas?

The March of History

What will Western Nations do in response to the Pope's appeal? Dither and hold talks, and the flow will continue. This is part of a historical population shift that has played out many times in the past in different places around the globe. A society reaches its apex, becomes decadent, and is slowly taken over by more energetic people spilling out from less-prosperous areas seeking a better life. The west is clapped out and no longer willing to propagate itself, but nature abhors a vacuum, so others are moving in and they will eventually take over the project.

Related:  Sea of Sorrows

Monday, April 20, 2015

Joan Jett

Finally, Joan Jett has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

I was head over heels in love with her when I was a teen.  The highlight of my young life was standing at the edge of the stage as she played at the State Fair.  To top it off, she reached down and touched my outstretched hand while singing "Do you Want to Touch Me."  Yeah, she also touched everybody else's hand, but so what?  

Besides writing and performing her own awesome music, she also does some great covers. Little Drummer Boy is one of my many favorites, although it stirred in me some clashing, conflicted emotions to hear a Christmas song sung by a woman who caused such un-Christmas-like thoughts in my hormone-soaked, adolescent brain.

At her induction, she sang Chrimson and Clover with the writer and original singer of the song, Tommy James.  That is my absolute favorite Joan Jett song, and here is the original:

Sunday, April 19, 2015

New Hampshire GOP Gaggle

Did anyone see any of the GOP Cattle Call this weekend?

Who is your favorite and why?

Most importantly, can any of them beat Hillary?

New Hampshire GOP Summit:  Six Takeaways

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Saturday Sessions: Percy Sledge

Percy Sledge, known as the King of Slow Soul, died this past Tuesday at the age of 74.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Stone Temple Pilots, Denver, Colorado, 15 April 2015

 That’s right. Stone Temple Pilots!

Taxes safely filed, I headed to Denver with friends to see grunge gods the Stone Temple Pilots play at the Fillmore. I hadn't visited that venerable old auditorium for decades, and not much had changed. It still smelled slightly of stale cigarettes and booze ground into old carpeting, there's still only one official men’s bathroom (the other is tucked behind a bar and almost backstage) but all my love for the place came flooding back as I grooved with my friends to Vasoline.

Attending a concert at the Fillmore, a small venue on Colfax with mostly standing room, is like attending a house party at a venerable but slightly down in the heels mansion that has a huge ballroom with chandeliers and an old-fashioned high school-looking stage at one end.

The crowd was cool, and the music excellent. The band was in good humor and bantered with us all evening. A great feature of the Fillmore is that the band is just so close to you anywhere you happen to be standing, and you can literally walk up and put your hand on the stage.

I figured the crowd would consist of old fogies like me in tattered original concert t-shirts, but it was mostly younger people who could not have been adults when Grunge burst into our lives and brought us Alice in Chains, Nirvana, Pearl Jam and my favorites, Stone Temple Pilots. I shouldn’t have been surprised. Although my son informed me before I left for the concert that grunge was now considered classic rock, he also expressed how jealous he was that I had a ticket to the show.

For those not up to speed on such things, frontman Scott Weiland has been out of the Stone Temple Pilots since 2013, reportedly due to his drug use and inability to hit all the notes, and Chester Bennington of Linkin Park has stepped in. I was skeptical, but I can report after seeing them live that the energetic Bennington is a great fit. His voice doesn't have the bassiness of Weiland's but he owned the stage, and he brings an STP vibe to the band and it all just fits together.

You can judge for yourself from the YouTube clip I found of the concert I was at. You can't see Chester because he dove down into the crowd and sang from there.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Tell Me Lies

The "Gruber Doctrine"

“lack of transparency is a huge political advantage” the “basic exploitation of the lack of . . . understanding of the American voter” is “really, really critical” for enacting your preferred policies". Jonathan Gruber

Obama's Deceptions on Iran and Cuba  Washington Post

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Nuff Said?


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Welfare for the Rich

I've been blogging here at Western Hero since March, 2008.  Before that I blogged at a project that was going great for awhile but eventually fell through. 

I started out as a fire-breathing, rightwing defender of Bush and the GOP, but I ended up a skeptical, cynical libertarian.  I also came to accept some arguments of the left, principally, their criticism of crony crapitalism and political favors handed out to corporations and the rich (except when it's Obama doing it...  hypocrites...).

But anyway, lefty Emily Badger (what a name!) wrote an article in WaPo entitled, The Rich get Government Handouts just like the Poor.  Here are 10 of them, and there is not much there for me to disagree with.

Herewith, I list her 10 instances of welfare for the rich which she believes should be eliminated, with my opinion below each item:

1. The mortgage interest deduction for big houses and second homes.

I agree.  I think there should be no deduction whatsoever, but a good start would be to limit it to one home, and target it to people who need the tax break.

2. The yacht tax deduction.

Agreed.  Who, besides a 1%'er would disagree with this one?

3. Rental property.

Disagree. I don't own rental property, but I know people who do, and it is a business that provides a worthy service to others.

4. Fancy business meals.

I could go either way. This is such chump change, I don't see it as a burning issue

5. The capital gains tax rate.

Partially agree.  Where I disagree:  What lefties forget is that capital gains are an investor's reward for funding capital projects and loaning money to people producing goods and services in our economy.  If the government taxman sticks it to investors too hard, it will result in less money for new startups and other worthy economic endeavors.

I do believe some indexing should be done so that Joe Schlubb wage slave doesn't get slammed by the same rate as the big guys raking in millions.

6. The estate tax.

Totally and vehemently disagree. What gives government the right to feast upon the carcasses of the dead?  When a farmer passes on his operation to his children, the money is all wrapped up in land, equipment and livestock.  Many inheritors are too cash poor to pay the tax bill, and end up having to sell.  That's just wrong.

7. Gambling loss deductions.

Agreed.  You crap out, you eat it.  (that goes for Wall Street gamblers as well, but that's another topic)

8. The Social Security earnings limit.

I could go either way on this one.

9. Retirement plans. 

Disagree. Badger makes a very unprincipled argument of fairness and resentment of those who have retirement plans. I hate the way government micromanages and over-regulates individuals and their savings plans anyway. For the vast majority of us wage slaves, government should simply tax us when we make it and then leave us alone to grow or blow our accumulated wealth as we see fit.

10. Tax prep.

Agreed.  If you pay someone to do your taxes, that should not be a write-off.

* * *

That's my opinion.  More importantly, what's yours?

Monday, April 13, 2015

"America is the Real Terrorist"

Shrieking Islamo-bitch Zubeidat Tsarnaev
"America is the real terrorist and everyone knows that"

That hateful, deranged and disgusting statement came from the stinking, satanic gob of a shrieking harridan named Zubeidat Tsarnaev.  She made that statement as a naturalized US citizen standing on US soil.  We granted her and her family asylum.  They were in such fear of their life where they lived before, that they frequently traveled back there once we gave them their US passports.

The islamonazi shrike is Boston bomber Dhozkhar Tsarnaev's mother, and she insists he is innocent.  I say we immediately deport that flaming bitch back to where she came from.  Better yet, send her ugly ass to Isis.

What is wrong with our society?

What sickness causes us to so despise ourselves so that we let in haters, sneering ingrates, and people who have zero respect for our nation, our culture and our values?

And then we get American citizens writing self-loathing, dhimmi-apologetic crap like this:

How Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s Immigrant Path Explains his Guilty Verdict

I won't quote from the article.  It was written by a muslima apologist, but it is indistinguishable from the pablum-filled twaddle churned out by guilty white girls who check their Ivy League privilege by acting as willing propaganda vectors for a twisted misogynist white-man ideology that hates everything her lily white ass stands for, like gay rights, womens rights, peace, tolerance, diversity and all the other feel-good progressive bumper sticker phrases.

We are a Stupid Nation

We construct our own Trojan Horses, fill them with people who hate us or who care nothing for our values and our history.  We then roll these societal human time bombs through the gates and disperse them throughout the nation, in many cases overwhelming small communities and traditional neighborhoods.

Is this by design?

Or are we merely the victims of sincerely misguided and incompetent government?

Finally, finally!  a GOP politician is standing up and demanding answers.  Senator Jeff Session writes in the Washington Post, America needs to curb immigration flows.  He cites a shrinking middle class, and growing working class unemployment, as immigrants drive down wages.  He also details the pressures put on schools and communities by a federal government that unceremoniously dumps unassimilated immigrants in their midst.

Here is the money quote:
It is not mainstream, but extreme, to continue surging immigration beyond any historical precedent and to do so at a time when almost 1 in 4 Americans age 25 to 54 does not have a job. What we need now is immigration moderation: slowing the pace of new arrivals so that wages can rise, welfare rolls can shrink and the forces of assimilation can knit us all more closely together.

Unfortunately, nothing will be done, and the reason why is contained in his last paragraph:
But high immigration rates help the financial elite (and the political elite who receive their contributions) by keeping wages down and profits up. 
Will anyone in Congress demand answers from Obama's rogue regime?  I doubt it.  We have an imperial presidency now.  It didn't start with Obama, and it won't end with him.  So, libs, if a Republican ever sneaks into the White House again, I don't want to hear any of your whining.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

It's getting to be that time of year

Photo: Brian Chu

Doesn't that look good?  My mouth is watering already. Since I jealously guard all my barbeque recipes, secret techniques, and the like. I'll share this with you:

Every year when spring and summer time rolls around we decide on a drink to serve al fresco when we grill.  We've done Mojitos, Mint Juleps,  Watermelon Basil Margaritas, and I still have nightmares about the gin based mint-cucumber cooler. This year I offer you this simple concoction:

The New York Sour

2 oz Bourbon or Rye (I use Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select).
1 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice.
1 oz simple syrup

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake, shake, shake... you should get frost on the shaker. Or alternatively if you're one of those squirrelly types afraid of bruising your bourbon, you could stir.  I don't think it makes a difference if you use rye, personally I doubt it makes a difference to the bourbon either.  Pour into a Old Fashioned Glass (lowball or rocks glass) over ice.

Wait you say, that's a Whiskey Sour. Look, I'm not done yet.

Now... float (using an upside down tablespoon) anywhere from 1/2 to 1 oz of Malbec ( I use Ménage à Trois Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina) or Syrah (Shiraz for you Aussie types) wine on top.  There you have it, a New York Sour.

Now that you're finished making it there are two schools of thought on how to drink it; 1. Leave it alone and layered; 2. Stir. I prefer the former.

P.S. One can if one desires, add a raw egg white to the sour before shaking which yields a smoother, silkier drink.  Adding egg whites to sours was once a popular past time until the invention of Salmonella.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Saturday Sessions: The John Butler Trio

The John Butler Trio is an award winning Australian folk and jam band from Fremantle, southwest of Perth. Formed in 1998 by John Butler, Jason McGann, and Gavin Shoesmith. They will be touring in the US this summer including the Telluride Bluegrass Festival (June 18) and Belly Up Aspen (June 19).

And since this season of The Walking Dead is over and I need a Zombie fix...

Friday, April 10, 2015



Thursday, April 9, 2015

Things that make you go "Huh?"


The new 10-YR Swiss bond has an interest rate of -0.055%.  So let me see if I understand this.... I am going to lend you money and pay you for the right to do so?  That said, it is still a better deal than you'll get in a account since the Swiss National Bank cut the deposit rate to -0.75%.


For some reason I think the entire concept 
is full of holes. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

When does Cyber Warfare become Warfare?

I think most of us would agree that hackers sponsored, aided, or working directly for a foreign government hacking into a nuclear power plant and causing a meltdown would fall into the category of "Act of War".

What about disabling the power grid, say a week or two long outage in the northeast? Causing a commuter train crash or airplane crash?  

How about hacking into the White House

What constitutes cyber warfare and when does it cross the line into warranting a "kinetic" response.  For those of you unfamiliar with the term, a kinetic response is good old fashioned warfare, i.e. blowing shit up.

One could launch a missile from a submarine off the cost, striking a nuclear plant, breaching containment, and pretty much ruin a good day and we'd all agree that is an act of war.  Is there a difference between blowing up a centrifuge with an iron bomb or causing it to self-destruct with a virus?

Now hacking the White House probably doesn't rise to the level of an act of war, more like the old school espionage days of breaking in and rifling through the desks and file cabinets, but the lines between cyber activities and kinetic activities are blurry and ill defined.  Where do you think they ought to be?

On a lighter note, pictured above is a Control Data Cyber 170 Mainframe, a system I used to work on many years ago.  The woman is changing a multiple platter disk drive, today... the equivalent of those four large disk drives would easily fit unnoticed in your pocket. The guy in the pink shirt is standing before a bank of tape drives and every eight minutes someone had to get up and change a tape... each reel contained over a mile of magnetic tape.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Immigration for a New Millennium

People's Cube
We're a connected world, and that has changed the nature of immigration. Our laws should change as well.

The fires Middle Eastern Muslims escape from now follow them to their new homes via the internet and satellite TV. This plants their cultural bigotries and dysfunctions on new soil where they are nurtured by hate preachers and misogynist neighborhood gangs, self-appointed religious police, and community rabble rousers who leverage host nation ideals of liberty and freedom of worship to employ jutistu moves against those same liberties that offend their delicate religious sensibilities.

Why does someone who suffered persecution in the Middle East (which by UN standards probably describes the vast majority) have to jump over five countries and land in a strange, incompatible and offensive culture of Europe or the United States?

If we were smart, we'd bribe other Islamic countries to take our refugee quota. Send the Muslim refugees to Indonesia, or a stable islamic African country in exchange for a few billion in foreign aid. Australia practices a form of this right now. We are are foolish for importing radicalized Syrians and Somalis. Nothing good can come from it.

We are not Latin America... yet

Our interconnected world works against newcomers from the south integrating into our society. My Mexican friends pop on their TV to watch regional Futbol ligas. Not the bigger matches with other nations for Copa standings, but Jalisco v. Chihuahua. They travel back and forth, and older relatives have visas that allow them to come and go. In 2011, US citizens and permanent residents in Los Angeles waved Mexican flags and cheered for the Mexican team to beat the US team. The LA Times describes how fans of the Mexican National team comported themselves during the match with the US team:
Its (United States) fans were vastly outnumbered. Its goalkeeper was bathed in a chanted obscenity. Even its national anthem (The US National Anthem!) was filled with the blowing of air horns and bouncing of beach balls.
Trivial, I admit, but it supports my contention that an interconnected world combined with close proximity of the mother country and a host nation that demands nothing of you will produce squatters who harbor no fealty to the United States other than gratitude for employment and a place flop down.

This man describes perfectly a common sentiment:
"I love this country, it has given me everything that I have, and I'm proud to be part of it," said Victor Sanchez, a 37-year-old Monrovia resident wearing a Mexico jersey. "But yet, I didn't have a choice to come here, I was born in Mexico, and that is where my heart will always be."
For people from Latin America, I've changed my mind and I now believe we shouldn't give any of them citizenship. We're too close to the home of their hearts, and there is absolutely no incentive for anyone here to learn English, respect the culture, or understand our system of government and what it means to be a good citizen. We already have too many native-born Americans who fit that description.

Our policy for our neighbors to the south should mirror those of the nations they hail from:  With a few sensible limits, allow them free entry and exit, but no social services. If they can support themselves with employment, or get the Christian Churches who love them so much to support them, they can stay here. As a bonus, we'll also provide work visas based on the needs of the nation, and implement a robust employment verification system and harshly punish dirty employers who exploit foreign workers.

No More Anchor Babies

To make this work, we would have to put an end to granting citizenship to babies born here to foreigners.  Easy enough, since it is a matter of law, not a constitutional guarantee.

A Buffer Zone on the Border 

The next step is to outsource immigration enforcement to Mexico, or at least buy their cooperation.  We create a buffer zone between the US and Mexico, so that people detained there have no recourse to the US justice system and the ACLU shysters who infest it, since they are not on US soil.  We build detention facilities on the Mexican side.  We gain Mexico's cooperation by bribing them with 'foreign aid' and preferential treatment for Mexican citizens.  To keep it humane, we will give anyone detained an immediate plane ride home back home, gratis.

A Long Pre-Naturalization Trial Period 

No guarantees.  You and your progeny must establish a track record as law-abiding residents. In my world, the Tsarnaevs would  not have been granted citizenship until their children had all grown.  Once their little bastards bombed the Boston Marathon, I would have rounded up every single family member and deported them all back to Kazakhstan where they came from (and where, incidentally, Chechens are not persecuted.)  You can't do that once you've granted them citizenship. 

A Simple 6-Point Plan

1. No more anchor baby citizenship
2. No public aid for non-citizens--immediate medical aid only and a free ride home
3. Bribe Muslim countries to take our Muslim refugee quota
4. Bribe Mexico to cooperate in immigration enforcement
5. Freedom of movement, but no citizenship for those who can return home
6. A long trial period as permanent residents before gaining US citizenship

I don't want our nation filling up with people who feel no love or loyalty to it, or who are ignorant of our history, our greatness, our laws, our morals, and our system of government.  America's 1%, academic and Hollywood elites, corporate cronies, Wall Street global elitists and Silicon Valley world citizens already feel this way, and we don't need it trickling down to the normal people

Monday, April 6, 2015

Who's Fleecing Who and Who's Fleecing You?

For every $100 in sales for Walmart, the state/local governments get an average of $6.88 in sales taxes (and as much $9.44 in Tennessee and $9.16 in Arizona, while Walmart gets only $3.10 in profits.


What percent profit on each dollar of sales do you think the average manufacturer makes after taxes? Responses to that question in 9 different polls between 1971 and 1987 ranged from 28% to 37% and averaged 31.6%In a Reason-Rupe poll the average response was 36%.  The reality?  The median corporate profit margin is 6.5%.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Happy Easter!

“The most beautiful thing we can experience in life is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: for his eyes are closed.” -- Albert Einstein

* - Western Hero will be back to normal posts tomorrow.  Get off the internet and enjoy the day!

Pange Lingua

Sing, my tongue, the Savior's glory!

Pange Lingua Gloriosi Corporis Mysterium is a hymn written by St Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274) for the Feast of Corpus Christi . It is also sung on Maundy Thursday, during the procession from the church to the place where the Blessed Sacrament is kept until Good Friday. The last two stanzas, called separately Tantum Ergo, are sung at Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.  (Source)

In the 1970's, Spanish music group Mocedades recorded a popular but reverent adaptation of Pange Lingua

Pange Lingua Gloriosi, St. Thomas Aquinas
Sing, my tongue, the Saviour's glory,
of His Flesh, the mystery sing;
of the Blood, all price exceeding,
shed by our Immortal King,
destined, for the world's redemption,
from a noble Womb to spring.

Of a pure and spotless Virgin
born for us on earth below,
He, as Man, with man conversing,
stayed, the seeds of truth to sow;
then He closed in solemn order
wond'rously His Life of woe.

On the night of that Last Supper,
seated with His chosen band,
He, the Paschal Victim eating,
first fulfils the Law's command;
then as Food to His Apostles
gives Himself with His own Hand.

Word-made-Flesh, the bread of nature
by His Word to Flesh He turns;
wine into His Blood He changes;
what though sense no change discerns?
Only be the heart in earnest,
faith her lesson quickly learns.

Down in adoration falling,
This great Sacrament we hail,
O'er ancient forms of worship
Newer rites of grace prevail;
Faith will tell us Christ is present,
When our human senses fail.

To the Everlasting Father,
And the Son who made us free
And the Spirit, God proceeding
From them Each eternally,
Be salvation, honour, blessing,
Might and endless majesty.

Amen. Alleluia.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Good Friday

Dali's Christ of St John of the Cross

“We must dig deeply in Christ. He is like a rich mine with many pockets containing treasures: however deep we dig we will never find their end or their limit. Indeed, in every pocket new seams of fresh riches are discovered on all sides.” -- St. John of the Cross

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Religious Freedom and Leftwing Loons

The left is in hysterics again, this time over an Indiana law that essentially repeats at the state level what the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 does at the federal level. That federal law was shepherded through Congress by Democrat Charles Schumer and signed by Democrat President Bill Clinton. BTW, the Christian Coalition and the ACLU were in lockstep support of the law. The ACLU and people who falsely call themselves liberal have done a 180 now, and the cognitive dissonance is driving them dizzy and crazy, so they are flailing about and lashing out.

The only sane and cogent argument I've seen against this law comes from libertarian Constitutional Insurgent at his blog, Libertas and Latte.  Proof that it is cogent and sane?  The leftwingers attacked him over it, and he is on their side!

The left's raving, unhinged argumentation usually turns on tedious semantics as they stamp their feet and insist the Indiana law does not "mirror" the federal law or is not "substantially the same," and any rightwing meanie who says otherwise is a big fat liar liar pants on fire!

The screaming, purple-faced pouters on the left do have a minor, trivial point on two narrow differences between Indiana's law and the federal statute.  From The Atlantic:
" will find that the Indiana statute has two features the federal RFRA—and most state RFRAs—do not.

First, the Indiana law explicitly allows any for-profit business to assert a right to “the free exercise of religion.”


"The new Indiana statute also contains this odd language: “A person whose exercise of religion has been substantially burdened, or is likely to be substantially burdened, by a violation of this chapter may assert the violation or impending violation as a claim or defense in a judicial or administrative proceeding, regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.”"
The first difference is that Indiana, unlike the federal statute, covers for-profit businesses, such as the bakery or other business who's religious beliefs would prevent it from providing services to a satanic wedding or purchasing insurance coverage for employees that includes abortifacients.

This makes sense. A business is not just some free-standing building with merchandise and cash registers; it is owned by people who hold values, sometimes religious ones.  It has a reputation and an image.  More importantly, a business can be fined and shut down by the government, and it can be sued in civil court.

The second difference is that Indiana's law provides the same protection against civil lawsuits that it does against adverse government action. This is not "odd language" in an age of agitprop lawfare, agenda-driven outrage and 21st century slip-and-fall lawyering based not upon physical harm, but hurt feelings.

But it Legalizes Discrimination!!!

I've been out rambling across the countryside of Left and Right Blogistan, asking progressives to point out what part of the law allows discrimination, and I still haven't gotten an answer, just fever swamp rantings of crazy people hinting darkly at a dominionist take over of our country and a Reverend Fred Phelps behind every bakery counter.

Here is how the federal law (and the equivalent state laws) work:

Ms. Victim alleges discrimination at the hands of an individual or entity whom we will call Mr. Perp. The government steps in and compels Mr. Perp to correct the wrong. Mr. Perp claims religious exclusion, and the government must prove in a court of law that there is a compelling reason to violate his religious sensibilities. In a civil case, Mr. Perp may use the same legal argumentation.

In both instances, it comes down to a judge weighing Mr. Perp's religious beliefs against a broader government interest. Have Mr. Perp's religious beliefs been "unduly burdened?" The answer is no if the government/accuser can show that the claimed burden is "(1) in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest; and (2) is the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest."

That is the question a judge must decide.

So, if a restaurant owner decides to bar transgendered customers, it's gonna be a rough row to hoe for him. However, if he refuses to cater a transgendered convention, it will probably go in his favor, like it did in the Hobby Lobby Case where the Supreme Court ruled in favor of religious liberty.

It really is that simple.  Sure, some bigots will attempt to use the law to their advantage, and I wish them bad luck.  Their success is unlikely anyway, since they would have to gain a court ruling first.

The (barely) Hidden Agenda

The real leftwing agenda here is to shrink the sphere of religious liberty to within the walls of your bigoted church and prohibit any religiously-motivated activity in the public marketplace of ideas.  The agenda is also to force you to bow down to activities that you disagree with.  The Pink Mafia, who by no means represents all gay people, are not satisfied with toleration.  They want your obeisance.  They want you to bow down to them and validate their activities.  They've already rounded up dimwitted crowds to maumau you in public forums, but what they truly crave is a tyrannical government using the full weight of the law to force you to endorse their agenda.

Related Links:
All the lies told about an Indiana law
WSJ - Religious Freedom Restoration Act

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

March 32, 2015

Face it, Fools have been with us a long, long time

Precentor Stultorum
 Lord of Misrule

Festum Fatuorum
Feast of Fools

 While many of you may be familiar with common group names such as a pack of dogs, a clowder of cats, or a flock of birds, you may be unfamiliar with some of the rarer terms such as a parliament of owls, a conspiracy of lemurs, or a gang of elk.  It's a little known fact that a group of politicians is known as a feast of fools.