Wednesday, February 29, 2012

- Catholics And Sex

For a group that’s supposed to be anti sex, Catholics seem to be awfully good at it. Even if you'd rather completely discount my experience as a young wolf rattling around Manhattan back in the day, the statistics confirm it as well. There are an awful lot of Catholics out there and more every year, so someone somewhere must want to have sex with them.

The truth is, the Catholic Church isn’t against sex at all – they’re strongly in favor of it. Ask anyone with authority in the church what the official position is and they’ll confirm that. The church has always gone to some lengths to promote sex in those circumstances that it thinks are morally appropriate for it. What the Catholic Church is really against is meaningless sex.

Look, you’re reading this in the 21st century. You know as well as I do that not all sex these days involves a deep meaningfully intimate connection between the parties involved. In some cases it doesn’t even involve knowing the other person’s name. These circumstances happen for both men and women. It’s happened to me… although not in a very long time. And it’s that empty, meaningless exercise – the kind of thing that leaves you feeling more lonely and depressed afterward – that the church is really against.

To the church, sex should be about intimacy and enriching the connection between a man and a woman. It can be about passion too – even that can help strengthen a relationship under the right circumstances. But what sex should not be about is your ego. It shouldn’t be about making notches in your bedpost or some equally shallow motivation. The church thinks that doing something like that cheapens both you and the person you’re with, and it leaves you worse off, not better. And the fact of the matter is, they’re right.

The church’s critics say that they’re against birth control, but that’s also not true. What they are against – and it’s a moral objection mind you, not a legal one – is “artificial birth control”. The church is an organization which holds moral authority only. It has no legal authority to tell people what to do. Their only means of persuasion is to tell people what they think right and wrong is, and let people decide as their individual conscience sees fit. They can ask, not command.

And if it comes down to deciding right from wrong, the line the church has drawn is not an unreasonable one. Artificial birth control lowers the risks of sex, but in the process takes away a portion of the meaning of it. It makes meaningless sex easier and much more common. There can be a debate about the intentions of making artificial birth control more widely available, but no reasonable person would debate the results of doing so. Whatever you think about the church’s motivation for this policy, the fact of the matter is, they’re absolutely right about what's come of it.

The same is true for the Church’s view on abortion. In fact, while the moral view on abortion is actually very clear, the science is still somewhat vague on the matter. Virtually everyone in America thinks it’s morally wrong to kill a baby after it’s been delivered. On this issue there really isn’t any reasonable debate. So if you’re strictly worried about right and wrong, would it be ‘wrong’ to kill that very same baby the day before it’s been delivered? Again, almost everyone think so. The moral question is pretty clear.

OK. What about the very same baby, healthy in all respects, but not due to be born for a month. I myself was born more than 8 weeks early and not only managed to survive it but have thrived. Even as middle age creeps up on me I continue to be one of the healthiest people I know. So surely it’s ‘wrong’ to kill a baby just because it isn’t due to be born for another month.

“When the baby can survive on its own!” says the abortion lobby, “Then it qualifies as a person.” OK, when is that exactly? The earliest a baby has ever survived delivery was after just 21 weeks of gestation – a hair over 5 months. Just about the time the mother is trading her old jeans in for actual maternity clothes. But thanks to modern medicine that number falls all the time. And what about the baby who has had only 20 weeks in the womb? Is there such a great difference in development between that baby and one with 21 weeks or is it just a matter of luck that one survived while the other didn’t?

The truth is, human lives don’t begin life the way that they end. There is no clear point at which you can say “prior to this moment it’s non viable, and after this moment it is.” All the scientific things we tend to think of as defining a life – a heartbeat, a brainwave etc, may all stop in a moment, but they all start in irregular fits and jerks. And for the record – both of those start WAY before 21 weeks.

So when trying to come up with a clear line between right and wrong, the church has decided to go with the clearest line that science can currently provide. And right now the clearest line is inception. It’s very clear to everyone that prior to inception, an egg and a sperm cell are not ‘a child’. No one (that I’ve ever heard of) claims otherwise. And afterward I think there is at least a reasonable debate with a strong philosophical position on the 'life' side. The more you think about it, assuming you aren't some kind of a monster, the more reasonable and thoughtful the church's position actually looks.

I wish the church was better at getting this message out, but it’s not entirely their fault. The mainstream media knows who they want to go to when it comes to talking about catholic morality and it’s certainly no one of authority in the Catholic Church. Instead they speak to Maureen Dowd or some other liberal mouthpiece who was once a practicing catholic. They talk about how most Catholics don’t actually hold to the moral standard the church sets (as if they expect the church to be a democratic institution when it comes to deciding right and wrong).

But when it comes down to this mandate - that they be required to pay for medical procedures which are directly contrary to Catholic morality - the church is absolutely right. It’s an issue of religious liberty. Even if they get their way on it, they won’t stop anyone from getting and using all the birth control they like. They can even get abortions if they so choose and the church will not stop them. But it won’t tell them it’s “OK” to do so. And it won’t be compelled to pay for something which it views as wrong.

Its times like this I wish the church spent more on public relations because I don’t think they are taking an unreasonable stance at all. In fact I think many people would probably see the wisdom of it from a moral perspective if they bothered to think about it at all. But the liberal media doesn’t want to report it that way because they think meaningless sex is a good thing. The more meaningless – the better. And you can’t convince anyone of how reasonable your view is if the other guy refuses to give you the microphone.

- Markets Anticipating Obama Victory ...??!!!

In a piece written by a nobody CNBC producer, we learn that unnamed 'market experts' have now begun to anticipate an Obama victory and (because of that) the market is rallying aggressively.

I'm a market expert. I'm not anticipating an Obama win yet, but those market expects that I talk to who are, are all dreading it. They're seeing an Obama win as 4 more years of regulatory and tax hell. They're all selling everything and pondering moving themselves and their businesses to Singapore. If you are a 'market expert' and you anticipate an Obama victory, the last thing in the world you would ever do is buy stocks because it's no secret how much Obama hates 'investment'.

Obama is head of the most economically illiterate administration in living memory. His ideas about how to steer the ship of state are designed by big labor (who own him outright) and his policies will lead to nothing except misery and hardship for Americans and their corporate interests. So ... believe me when I say this... if the markets were anticipating an Obama victory, they would be selling off hard.

This article is just some nobody at CNBC presenting his wishful thinking as if it were fact. At best it's correlation being presented as causality. But in reality I think it's nothing more than wildly slanted journalism from CNBC. You can expect this sort of nonsense from the left during an election year.

The real question will be ... how many leftist bloggers point to this (shamelessly BS) article as proof that Obama is great for the economy?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

- A Brief Dog Story

I don’t know if there is a trend to it, but like Jonah Goldberg and Mark Levin, I’m a big ‘Dog Guy”. Our present dog (pictured above) is a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel that my wife talked me into getting. From the photo I'm sure you can imagine how the conversation went. But I'm not sorry about it. She's a fine, clever team mate and tougher than she looks. She's certainly no powder puff - all appearances to the contrary.

I don’t know if you’ve ever seen these dogs, but they define adorable. They’re cuter even than a Cocker Spaniel, and even better with children. In fact, I can say without fear of contradiction that our dog is the single most affectionate creature that anyone who has ever seen her, has ever seen.

They’re a toy breed so they’re on the smallish side. But like most spaniels, our Maggie has no idea. She’ll charge (fully spaniel like - more courage than sense) at any creature that enters her path. But not to attack it, just to smell it from up close. She’s all about the love, not the fight. And using that spaniel’s nose for her is its own nirvana.

About half of our back yard is fenced. About a year ago, a fawn got inside the fence and wore itself out trying to get back out. Our 20lb dog pursued that thing as if she were the last lion in Africa and that deer the last gazelle. She ran at it full speed, without so much as a hair’s breath of hesitation. She’s totally and utterly fearless. Fear of running down an animal several times her size simply never occurred to her. But she never meant to harm the creature, only to get her nose close to it. She just wanted to get a really good whiff.

She’s awfully smart too – and not just trainable. I keep telling people that she would learn to do calculus if there were a piece of bacon in it for her. My wife has taught her to do several complicated tricks including jumping circus like through a pair of hula hoops. But more than that, she’s perceptive about people. She understands much of what we say as it pertains to her. “Stay”, “come here”, “lie down”, “rollover”, “hold still” these aren’t tricks that require formality; they’re words whose meaning she’s learned. And she can pick them out of regular conversation and respond to them. Nothing in the world makes her happier than "communicating" with us in that way – except maybe the aforementioned bacon.

This is an all but silent breed so they don’t make superlative guard dogs, but as a companion and friend I don’t think you could do better. Which is why I was so horrified yesterday to see this:

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: An adoptable dog in Old Bridge, NJ
Small • Young • Female

Donna Bella is a sweet 1 year old female king charles spaniel. She weighs 20 pounds. This poor girl was left tied to a fence with no food, shelter or water. A very kind police officer rescued her and surrendered her to our organization. She is a great dog that is very friendly and quite affectionate. Donna Bella has an issue with people trying to take something from her. She needs an experienced person that will take the time to train her and work with her on this issue. Donna Bella is current on her vaccines, is microchipped and hw negative. She has been spayed. If you are interested in adopting this gorgeous baby, please fill out an application on the following link: ADOPTION APPLICATION

That’s obviously a Cavalier mix with something else. But these dogs are the sweetest creatures god ever created. They have the most adorable disposition I’ve ever seen on any creature. And to treat one like that dog has been treated has just left my trembling with anger.

There is a special ring of hell for people who torture kids and dogs. I personally think a person that does that should be beaten in the street. Dogs end up in shelters and I can understand that. It’s not always out of malice. Owners die or circumstances occur that prevent people from keeping them. It's unfortunate, but it happens. To paraphrase a "Deadwood" quote: "Even in an eden like NJ, bad things do sometimes still occur." But only a truly evil creature could abuse a dog – particularly one with a disposition like a cavalier. To give one "an issue" at all must have involved unspeakable mindless cruelty.

Maybe you like bigger dogs, or maybe you're a cat person. But for being allergic to them, but I have no issue with cats like some dog people do. But if you can manage it, I'd highly recommend this breed for anyone with children. They are an "upside surprise". Follow the link for more info.

- Dharun Ravi & Middlesex County Justice

Remember Tyler Clementi, the Rutgers Freshman who jumped off the George Washington Bridge after a video of him having sex with a man was posted online? Well shock of shocks, it didn’t actually happen that way. In reality the press reports of the circumstances have been a case of gay lobbyist ‘telephone’ where the story was repeated and re-repeated and amplified and distorted every time. By the time it was comon knowledge, the story as told bore little resemblance to the truth.

In reality, Clementi’s roommate was only guilty of being an unsympathetic jerk – which if my memory serves, is a tag that can hang on roughly 30% of the Rutgers freshmen. Had he been inducted into a frat he’d have been celebrated for this tendency instead of being in court for it. But that’s not the way it went. Instead the roommate – Dharun Ravi is learning the worst possible lessons about how NJ works.

Last week I was in the Midwest and I was having a conversation with a man who lives in Michelle Bachman’s mostly rural Minnesota district. He’s a smart guy, but not overly so. And his conservative tendencies are more a product of habit than of cognitive reflection. He’s more of a Glenn Beck than a William F. Buckley. And he was wondering how much things have improved in NJ.

“So are things all better in NJ now that you have Christy?” he asked me? At first I didn’t know how to respond. “Well he’s better than Corzine of course, but the problems of NJ can’t really be fixed by one guy.” I said.

“Well he’s taking on the unions.” He said.

“That’s true, but the fact that they don’t own the state outright anymore doesn’t mean they don’t still control it. Liberal political machines have infested every aspect of life in NJ. They are involved when you get a parking ticket, or take your kids to school, or flush your toilet. Everything that happens in NJ only happens because someone in politics can make a buck off you when you do it. But for that, none of it would be allowed.”

We went on like that for a while, but I don’t think I was able to impress upon him how political life is here – how it dominates everything. I probably should have mentioned this case.

This kid is all but certainly going to jail. He’s in Middlesex County. Middlesex County has grown up as the baby boomer middle and upper middle class children of Union county blue collar workers fled the Newark riots and urban blight. These liberal boomers are the locusts of NJ fleeing the land that they themselves destroyed. Even the ones that aren't liberal in all aspects of their life are fully prepared to "go along to get along" in a liberal dominated world. They would never run the risk of incurring Leviathan's wrath by standing up to it.

These are people who have been trained since birth to keep their mouths shut and hand over their vig. Their parents paid the union bosses for their jobs on the line at GM, the docks, and Thomas & Betts. They were raised as serfs and they know no other life. They are comfortable with a government and political machine that serves it’s own interests rather than theirs, and have never really known anything else. Many of them have even convinced themselves that it’s how things should be.

In the meantime, this trial of Dharun Ravi too neatly fits the liberal fantasy of how the world works. There is a victim, so the liberal political machine must find a villain and then proclaim themselves the hero by utterly smashing him. It doesn’t matter to them that this kid is only guilty of being a jerk. (When do the facts EVER matter to liberals when they have their fantasy to cling to instead?) He’s caught up in the talons of the leviathan that controls all life in NJ. And if the liberals of Middlesex County are going to continue to think of themselves as virtuous, they’ve got to destroy this kid, and declare their fantasy about the facts as the truth.

It’s a tragic tale. But it’s not alone. When the gay lobby wants blood they’re going to have it. They will in NJ at any rate. The political machine is going to make sure of that – and justice or truth be damned.

And when they’re done with him, and they’ve written new laws that make it all but certain that 50% of the public school kids will accuse the other 50% of bullying; and law enforcement is spending hundreds of billions a year looking for 8 year old's who derisively called their classmate a “fag” on the school bus, they’ll call it a great triumph whose only problems can be solved by a little more intrusion into our lives. And the people of Middlesex county will nod, and hand over the vig. That’s how it’s done there. No justice - just law.

Government in Middlesex country doesn’t belong to the people there. It hasn’t for a long time – maybe ever. It belongs to the unions, and the lobbyists and the power players in Trenton and the County committee. The people are cowed and won’t argue. So the prosecutors and Judges and pols will continue to ride rough shod over them without a second thought. And woe unto the poor, dumb, obnoxious kids who get in the way.

Monday, February 27, 2012

- Congresswoman Boo'ed Over HHS Mandate

My feeling on this HHS mandate "accommodation" is that it's going to be very costly for Obama because it shows American voters what he and his people are really like.

"You don't want to pay for it?" They say "Fine... you can just pay the insurance company, and they'll pay for it." Then without asking how Catholics feel about it, they pronounce the issue settled, and try to move on.

But Catholics don't think it's settled - not at all. And the more often the Democrats go out there and tell us that we're all OK with it when we obviously are not, the more they will alienate us.

I say 'us' only in the strictest sense. I'm hardly a model Catholic - not even close. But I think I've defended the church enough both in my private life and on this blog, that I can call myself a member, even if the idea of membership in anything makes me uncomfortable.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

- Obama Plays The Battered Wife

"They only hit us when we deserve it!"
says our commandier (that's command-ee-ay) in chief.

I personally think our first female president is demonstrating a little battered wife syndrome. As anyone liberal could tell you, a few accidentally burned books is far worse than several thousand dead citizens - and certainly warrants an apology.

Friday, February 24, 2012

- IBM Safer that US Treasury Bonds

This is a great piece from the estimable Veronique De Rugy - that goes with the chart above. (It references this WSJ piece.)

The long and short of it is that there are companies whose debt is considered by the markets to be less risky than the government debt of the country where they are resident. This makes lots of sense. Multinational corporations have better balance sheets than the governments of most developed countries; certainly better than all those on the list above.

It used to be that the conventional wisdom was that the government can always use force to extract more revenue from the populace through taxation. And while violence (or the threat of violence) is still a very reliable method of getting money from citizens, the simple fact is that governments have promised to give away FAR FAR more than they could EVER possibly hope to collect.

The bond markets are very much aware that when it comes to government payouts, someone isn't going to get what they've been promised. Right now (in the US anyway) the assumption is that it's the taxpayers who will get screwed. They are the victims of government after all and have no choice in the matter. But the bond holders have a voluntary relationship with the government that they lend to, and therefore have more leverage.

Besides, as we're seeing in Greece, the laws can be changed on a whim by a government and arrangements can be made so that they don't have to honor their contracts after all. Not so for IBM or Apple.

In effect, the chart above is a reflection of the lack of character of the people we have running our governments. CEO's may be evil 1%'ers, but thanks to the financial markets, they all pay their debts or suffer the consequences. Markets have complete primacy over the actions of the private sector. To quote PJ O'Rourke, the market is a bathroom scale. You might not like what it says, but you can't just pass a law that says you only weight 170.

Politicians on the other hand, are doing their best to permanently suspend the concept of the markets being a reflection of 'consequences' for past actions. They're hoping that they can postpone those consequences long enough for the people in charge to retire from power. That's what the 'primacy of politics over the market's' actually means.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

- OWS Advocates An Armed Uprising

The OWS crowd are the ultimate cowardly liberals who can only act tough in a group. I'm not seriously worried about them, nor should anyone else be. If they had the courage to stand up to the world then they'd be out there making a living instead of living in their parent's basement and complaining.

But I thought the picture was so hysterical that I had to post something to go with it.

- Another Gay Marriage Protest

I think gay marriage is stupid. As I've said, sleep with who you like - so long as it's no one who lives under my roof, I couldn't care less. But don't command me to pretend that your relationship means more than it really does.

Marriage is about children, not sex or even love. Hopefully those things are a part of it too, but that's not the purpose of the institution. And it helps no one for a vocal minority to use the power of the state to make the majority pretend that sex means the same thing as parenting.

With all that said, this protest seems perfectly appropriate to me. The hairdresser in question has (in my opinion) an absolute right to refuse his services for any reason, including politics. He owes no one an apology for it. In fact, it's nice to see something like that, instead of death threats for a 14 year old girl.

- Liberals Are All Cowards Part: 3,844,736

I find this story completely consistent with my general “liberals are all cowards” meme. A 14 year old girl makes a public statement supporting a defense of marriage bill and in response, the liberal blogosphere goes wild with death threats and demands that the liberal bureaucracy remove the child from her parent’s home.

A 14 year old girl. How brave of them.

I continue to notice that no liberals are threatening me. I’ve gotten online death threats before because of my job, but they were all from conservatives. Liberal don’t have the courage. So if you’re a fit and healthy mid 40’s man who is a crack shot, no one on the liberal side will say boo to you. But if you’re a 14 year old girl … well then watch out.

I don’t care so much that they want to force me to pretend that they’re married just because they’re having sex. I continue to maintain that they’re sex life could not be of less concern to me, but I have no intention of pretending they’re married. I’d support a defense of marriage act in NJ if I get the chance, and I’ll urge as many others to do so as I can as well.

So all you heroic liberals who have been anonymously threatening the little girls on the web… here I am. Come get me.

You people really and truly are despicable human beings – as is anyone who threatens a child over something so stupid.

- NJ Charm

He's the most unapologetically anti-gun Republican governor in the country and is a squishy lefty in many other ways. But you've got to admit, the guy has style.

NJ folks are like that. I keep telling my friend from out of state that it's sort of a Mecca for rudeness. But that plan speaking tendency does have an upside. I think if it weren't for the TV cameras he might have told Buffett to F-off.

And how many of you have been dying to say that to the old coot.

- Small Business "Hot Air"

Now that my daughter is getting older, my wife has decided to go back to work part time. Since it wasn't a question of her salary being the most important issue, she took a job that offered a lot of flexibility and convenience. But she's vastly overqualified for it, and is making much less than she would in a role more suited to her experience. That's OK with her. No complaints.

But one thing she learned very quickly was that very often a small business is small because the person running it, isn't running it very well. Her boss is a very nice person, but is a relatively incompetent manager and is absolutely awful under pressure. She's owned her business for years and even though it's an industry which offers many economies of scale, she hasn't been able to make the firm grow beyond a few people.

Here then is the point. Sometimes, small businesses don't actually create many jobs even though politicians believe they should. In reality the only firms which do create lots of jobs are those that are new, and are being run by someone who will inevitably be in the 1%.

Haltiwanger and two other economists showed, in a study of 32,000 companies over 30 years, that small businesses no more than five years old - that's about 40 percent of them - are the only ones that create more jobs each year than they cut.

In 2005, for instance, more than 99 percent of the 2.5 million net new private-sector jobs in the United States came from these startups, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Which of course means that they only create jobs by being what Team Obama thinks, is a part of the problem.

Monday, February 20, 2012

- The Consequences Of Embracing Feminism

I haven't read Charles Murray's new book, but it's creating quite an uproar. I've heard him speak about it of course, and even linked the video of a few of his speeches on the topic here. I'm excited to get to it.

The basic premise of the book is that while the values of the lower income portion of America have rapidly degraded since the 60's, the values of upper income America really haven't. And it's had the effect of isolating us - each in our respective "classes". While single parenthood, abortion and divorce are all increasingly common in the lower income groups, it's much more rare and unusual in the upper income groups - more closely in line in fact with America prior to it's last "radical transformation".

And I think this post from the corner might play a part in that too, but it's tough to imagine Murray, data driven empiricist that he is, raises the issue in his book. Many of my friends have wives who do not work - mostly because we can afford to. When we went looking for wives we chose girls who had a 'traditional' view of the role of women in society. Being a full time mom was always their first choice.

None of us married hard hitting feminists like Maureen Dowd (or her much younger equivalent) because we didn't want that kind of a woman. Who would? We wanted women who were willing to be our partners, not eternally fight us us for dominance in the home. We would be willing to step up and take on all the responsibilities as sole bread winner, but in return we wanted a woman who would step up and take on the not inconsiderable burdens of being a full time mom. We didn't want that task ceded to some housekeeper or nanny that we couldn't trust. We wanted her to do it.

I think more men in the lower income brackets would probably do that too but to be frank, they can't afford to. Our tax system is structured to punish single income families, and the higher rates make it tougher than it used to be. And for some reason this argument used to be kicked around a lot, but you don't hear it much anymore. I guess it's just assumed that government should take roughly half of everything someone earns in order in order to fund all the "at work daycare programs and free federally funded abortions. Those things have done wonders for family cohesion and the standard of living in the black community, so why not apply it to the rest of American society too?

And people wonder why so many Wall Street guys are married to asian girls from more traditional family structures, or why I (and so many of my peers) are married to immigrant girls who never saw "Maude" when they were kids. They skipped (or ignored) the feminist brainwashing about the 'new role' for women, and the prize for at least some of them, was a man who would 'step up' too.


Heather Mac Donald and others noticing the same thing I have, from a slightly different perspective.

From frequent commenter Hell_is_like_Newark:

- The Road To OWS

The critics of the leftist progressive worldview claim that it's all driven by envy, and focused on entitlement. They claim it's a worldview which ends in destruction rather than creation; where the intent of a program is all that matters, and the actual result is considered secondary - where 'fairness' is determined by an arbitrary political process rather than by individual merit.

The standard bearers of progressivism are the teachers. Incapable of succeeding in the private sector, they retreat to their protected world where competition has been eliminated, and all you need to do to declare yourself a success is be more persuasive than the next guy. They don't have to 'accomplish' anything, and it's a good thing too. Because when in the real world where other people's competing interests are taken into account, they lack the capacity for achievement.

Those who can't... teach. And the only way they ever get anything done, is by banding together as a noisy minority, and using the government to force others to comply with their experimental ideas.

This story is a perfect example of the 'results' of liberal progressivism as compared to its intentions.
The 'occupy' movement took over a foreclosed house to the cheers of leftist politicians and the media. they intended to fix it up and cede (they don't own it so they can't give it) it to a homeless family.

But with all their master's degrees in puppetry and LGBT studies, the occupy movement can't actually 'do' anything. The tragic result was mayhem and destruction. They all but completely destroyed the house and left the world a worse place - exactly as their critics all said they would.

One of the unspoken goals of the OWS movement was to rebuild society in a way that the requirement of actually accomplishing things was eliminated as a means to success. They wanted politics and political power to be the only consideration, rather than actual productivity.

The thing to remember this next election season is that whatever the merit of their intentions, the reason the world doesn't already work the way that liberals wish it would, is because the world doesn't work the way that liberals wish it would.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

- Can't Liberals Tell Truth From Happy Fiction?

When you watch this video, isn't it clear who is actually talking about solutions and who is blowing smoke?

I get that the Democrat party likes to depict him as throwing Grandma off a cliff for political reasons. But isn't it obvious that Geithner is just shucking and jiving while Paul Ryan is speaking the truth?

I just don't get it.

At the end of the day the real fiscal problem of the United states is that the government has promised to pay all the medical bills of people who can't afford it. But the government can't afford it either. But liberals still seem to think that there will be some magic spell that some Democrat Pol with good enough intentions will be able to cast that divides the medical loaves and fishes and manages to feed the multitudes.

Even for a guy who believes in the occasional miracle, this is simply nuts.

Friday, February 17, 2012

- A Great New Hunting Opportunity!

PETA Drone Season...

A remote-controlled aircraft owned by an animal rights group was reportedly shot down near Broxton Bridge Plantation Sunday.

To a guy who is a big Wing shooting fan, this sounds like an exciting new way to address the issue of intrusive imbecile animal rights nuts. They probably don't cook up very well, but I'll be they make for exciting shooting. (It looks like you'd probably do best with about a #4 shot.)

And a Related Post:

I've looked around a lot for a video that shows how much fun sporting clays shooting is. This isn't technically sporting clays, but it's similar, and it does capture all the hoots and the fun of the sport. It's much the same when we do our annual gig in the spring.

- Never Do For Free...

...what people will pay you to do.

Record 19 reporters, media execs join Team Obama

It's nice that some of them actually got on the 'official' payroll. At least now they can really admit where they stand.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

- Our Retarded Cousin To The North

Some Good news from our retarded cousin to the north. Canada has officially ended it's poorly thought out Long Gun registry. The law required all firearms to be registered, but there was WIDESPREAD defiance of the law by people in rural communities.

The few times an effort was put into enforcement and someone went looking for the guns in question that farmers and sport shooters had failed to register, it turned out that they were mostly lost or damaged and then destroyed. But now that the law has been rescinded, I'm sure many of them will be found again. It's amazing the way the law can effect your memory.

the law involved lots of fees, paperwork, and bureaucracy, so it was everything liberal anti-gun Canadians had hoped for. And when it came to pass, like most things liberal, all it accomplished was collecting fees, adding to paperwork and expanding the bureaucracy. It saved not a single Canadian life - which is to say that it failed utterly in accomplishing it's goal.

It cost 1 Billion - so I'm sure the liberals will say that it failed from lack of funding.

- The Liberal Mythology Machine

The most discreet abuse I've seen by the mainstream media in recent years, apart from utterly foregoing their responsibility to vet candidate Obama, was their discussion of George Bush's proposed ban on stem cell research.

Ask any liberal and they'll explain the whole issue to you. Stem cell research held genuine promise for curing of everything from Alzheimer to Parkinson's, but since George Bush was a bible thumping christian who hated science, he tried to ban it. Thankfully, the brave Democrat congress prevented him from doing so.

But this storyline is an utter fabrication. It's a made up fantasy that never took place. George Bush never tried to ban stem cell research. He didn't even try to ban federal funding of stem cell research. He tried to prevent the federal funding of a particular kind of stem cell research that relied on material from aborted fetuses. Even if he had succeeded, no one would have been prevented from doing that research, they only would have been prevented from doing it on the taxpayer's dime.

Team Obama's position on the religious liberty land mine they've stepped on strikes me as a similar thing. I think they're hoping that the mainstream media, dolts that they are, will rush in and distort this story enough to make it a part of conventional liberal wisdom, like George Bush's fictitious stem cell research ban.

They're trying to get them to depict this as a story about the availability of birth control - which it obviously is not. People who work for Catholic institutions can still get and use all the birth control they want. If they are unconcerned about their souls they can even go and get abortions if they like. No one will stand in their way. The only issue is that the Catholic institutions they work for would rather not be obliged to pay for it for them.

And the liberal media will be only too happy to frame the issue in the way Team Obama wants. With the possible exception of the amalgam of evangelical 'Born Again Christian' sects, there is no organization who better represents everything the liberal intelligentsia are against than the Catholic church. And that's really only because the former has been so much more successful politically in the last few decades. The church of Rome could still use a really great press agent.

But here's the real issue. The Catholic church objects morally (morally mind you not legally ... they say it's wrong, not that it must be illegal) to have an abortion, or to practice artificial birth control. Maybe you share that moral view and maybe you don't - but either way, there isn't going to be a church guard showing up at your house to throw you in jail. It's a question of conscience not of law, and conscience is very much the domain of the church.

But because that's their position, they do not want to be compelled by the state to buy those services for anyone either. That's it. They want the liberty to act as their conscience dictates, and do not want any law (like the Obama driven health care mandate) to force them to do otherwise. Pretty straightforward.

Personally I think both Secularism and Environmentalism should be 'protected' under the religious liberty clause as well. Maybe some forward thinking right wing group will petition the state for protection of those groups and in the process, put an end to all this government sponsored nonsense.

- Teaching Union Pigs To Sing

Nicholas D. Kristof writing about the Teacher's unions in the NYTimes, sounds to me like a battered wife talking in the emergency room about how she really "deserved it."

"Teachers’ unions are here to stay, and the only way to achieve systematic improvement is with their buy-in. Moreover, the United States critically needs to attract talented young people into teaching."

He certainly sounds like Randi Weingarten's 'bitch' to me.

It's true, there may be a few union leaders who are media savvy enough to understand that they have gone too far and as these 'worst cases' hit the media it hurts them instead of helping them. But they would sooner see every child in America pushed out into the world as an illiterate than allow the kind of changes that are being proposed in New Haven to become mainstream. No tenured eternal job security?! Demands for actual "Results?!" Fat frickin chance.

If it's going to be like it is in the private sector, then what's the point of having a union in the first place? Insulating "Labor" from market forces is the whole point of a labor union. More pay for less work, and less work for more security is their entire raison d'etre.

So the simple fact is, so long as the unions retain political power, they will be a force operating against the interests of American students. They have no choice - their interests are diametrically opposed. The only people who say otherwise are the union leaders who are trying to fool America, and the imbecile teachers who yell utter nonsense at Chris Christy at his town hall meetings.

Randi Weingarten knows it. And I'm sure she's glad to have a mouthpiece as obedient as 'dumb as dirt' Nicholas Kristof, helping her sell it.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

- Be Careful What You Wish for...

Say the NRO-nicks to the fans of Obamacare:

Santorumcare could involve — say — a federally mandated, five-day waiting period before women could have abortions. This parallels the original five-day interlude that potential firearms buyers faced under the Brady Law. How could the Left object to that?

How about a requirement that every American who receives free condoms from any federally subsidized health center first must receive 30 minutes of mandatory abstinence counseling?

And why not a rule that those who visit Gay Men’s Health Crisis cannot accept any services until after completing a two-day course on gay conversion, so that they can be “cured” of their homosexuality?

They aren't serious about any of things of course, they're only trying to prove a point about how government run health care means the government is in charge 'WHOEVER' runs the government. It's really just highlighting the downside of surrendering your liberty to politics.

But it seems to me that even liberals are smart enough to see that sort of thing coming. And in the meantime by reminding them of it in this way, it will now become a Democrat election talking point. If Santorum gets the nod (which I doubt ... but is still possible) then there will be Democrat PAC ads and attack dog party spokespeople accusing him of proposing these very items. and they'll repeat it so often that by November, it will be the generally accepted Liberal mythology.

No thinking person would be stupid enough to believe it, but the know-nothing left will definitely take a break from watching "Keeping up with the Kardashian's" to run down to the polls on election day and vote against him because of it. And the attack dogs all know that.

So I personally don't know if it's a net positive thing to remind them that an all powerful government will make them slaves as well as us. I think it would be better to leave them disheartened by Obama's "betrayal of progressive principles" or whatever, and stay home on election day.

But what do I know.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

- That's A Bold Statement

Chicago Called Most Corrupt City In Nation

...obviously a man whose never been to Trenton...

or Newark.

- Reluctantly Emerging From The Shadows

CNN Money has an interesting (if somewhat personally misleading) article on my old boss, Louis Bacon, from Moore Capital Management.

If I owe my career to one guy, it's actually Bruce Kovner the Billionaire ex head of Caxton Associates, who took a flier on an ambitious research staffer who he felt showed some promise. It was he who assigned to me the first institutional money I ever managed and who in effect 'promoted' me from Quant/research analyst to PM. And although my gratitude to Bruce will be eternal, I've got to admit, I learned more in just a few years working at Moore capital than I had anywhere else.

A lot of that can be blamed on Elain Crocker, the eminently capable President of Moore. I don't know how it is now, but when I was working there, she had that place running like a well oiled machine - a machine that was designed and built from the ground up to absolutely maximize performance. She knew that when it comes to building a race car there are lots of things to worry about, but the mileage that it gets isn't one of them. In my humble opinion, I don't think there is another non-trading executive on Wall street who is her equal.

And in my personal case, the rest of the positive things that came from my experience at Moore could probably be blamed on Kevin Heerdt who was then the head of derivative trading, and was the guy from whom my little group took the vast majority of it's marching orders. He's a brilliant guy and he taught me more than I had leaned in all my time at JPMorgan or the other banks I worked for combined.

The work practice at Moore for people at my sort of senior 'worker bee' level, was to put us under 100% of the pressure we could stand, and when we stood it, turn the pressure up to 105%. After a few months my little team could produce studies and data in 90 seconds that would take days or weeks to produce elsewhere. But it was in keeping with the social hierarchy of the place that when we did, we'd apologize for it taking so long.

It was a brutal and incredibly demanding work environment, that a friend who left a bit before I did said "It takes you about a year to recover from." It was a great place to be the guy asking the questions, but a terrible one to have to be answering them. Or at least, it was difficult. Terrible is really too strong. Because with all that said, I was always paid well... very well. In fact, I was paid so well that it was worth all the demands of the job and then some. And that demanding environment made you much better at whatever you were doing.

I've since worked at Caxton Associates and Tudor Investments - which along with Moore, make up three of the top five hedge funds in the world. And while I have nothing but respect, and in many cases genuine affection for the people at both firms, neither of them could hold a candle to Moore Capital. It was a white hot crucible where things were hardened into something useful. At least that what it was for me.

The big multi-strategy macro hedge fund seems to be going the way of the dodo. I spoke to a very prominent hedge fund investor recently. They're based in Zurich and are a name industry insiders would know. He gave me the impression that they don't think the big managers are adding as much value to the PM selection process as they used to. And that means the smaller more focused firms will probably have an easier time marketing.

But guys like Louis Bacon will always be legends. And the thing about some of those guys is, a few of them even deserve it.

Monday, February 13, 2012

- Honestly, It Could Have Been Worse


You have to admit, it's unique. Do you think Bloomberg will insist on a seven day waiting period for fabric softener?

- Whitehouse Supports A Global Minimum Tax

This is some Whitehouse Economic adviser opening up the discussion of a global minimum tax. Thankfully it's never going to happen. But if you ever doubted what the left was about this should eliminate any question.

It's all about control.


For instance, in addition to the tax credits that already exist in the budget, the president proposes 7 tax credits or cuts for families and individuals (such as an exclusion for student-loan forgiveness after 25 years of income-based or income-contingent repayment), 5 protectionist tax incentives (for expanding manufacturing and insourcing jobs, such as a new “manufacturing communities” tax credit), and 6 tax-relief provisions or investments to create jobs and jump-start growth (inlcuding 3 new ones, such as a 10 percent tax credit for new jobs and wages, and a tax credit for energy-efficient commercial buildings).

And then there are the tax credits for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles that use alternative fuels, the energy incentives, the new-market tax credit, the designated growth zones, the tax-exempt bonds for Indian tribal governments, and much more.

In addition, the budget includes mandatory targeted initiatives such as the development of a national network of manufacturing-innovation institutes. It also creates a infrastructure bank for a total initial ten-year cost of $9.8 billion.

In a world where everyone is supposed to "Pay their fair share and play by the same rules", there seems to be an awfully lot of special cases to the rules. Maybe the rules that Obama want's us all to play by are "Donate to Democrat campaign causes and you get a carve out, otherwise ... screw you".

That certainly sounds like the rules Obama is talking about to me.

- A Word On Obama's Budget

To be a liberal in 20th century America there are a lot of subjects on which you have to have a healthy propensity for self delusion. The full list is very long and very deep and spans from man made global warming, to the crusades, to the effectiveness of socialism to the ugly intellectual history of the American progressive movement.

So in the grand scheme of things, I don't see Obama's new proposed budget - which includes a hair under 4 Trillion in spending, and 1.4 Trillion (with a T) in NEW taxes, as being such a big intellectual obstacle for them.

They will no doubt have themselves convinced that we'll all be better off if 100% the money 'earned' by Americans in the private sector was siphoned off for the unions to spend on Democrat election ads. Because as we all know, the new-speak generating political advertising industry is central to any healthy modern economy.

- What Ever Happened To Susan Roesgen?

Remember Susan Roesgen, the Chicago based CNN reporter who gained notoriety by berating a Tea Party protester?

Lots of people knew that CNN declined to renew her contract, but people like that are always welcome somewhere in the news media. So I took a look around, and it turns out that she's in New Orleans doing a program called News with a slant Twist. What do you want to bet that the 'Twist' is that Republicans are all racist scumbags who set puppies on fire for fun?

Just an FYI.

- Gaming The Legal System

From the WSJ:
To sum up: St. Paul has spent taxpayer money for almost a decade fighting a case to force slumlords to provide the poor—including minorities—with better housing. But just as it was on the cusp of what it claims would have been a victory at the Supreme Court, the city withdrew its appeal under pressure from the Obama Administration and liberals who feared they might lose a weapon of dubious legality that they want to use to tell banks how and to whom to lend.

The fundamental unfairness of America's 'racial grievance' industry is well known. It presents a bill for all sorts of special benefits to the wealthy, while reducing America's poor minorities to utter dependency, all to help people like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson maintain their strangle hold on the black community.

They and the Feds make the claim that it's really to 'help' minorities, but this is one of those examples where it's obviously hurting them. It's a shame they'll never really be help to account for any of it.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

- Obama And Genuine Racism

"I Voted for Obama because he's black."
Says Samuel L. Jackson.

Not only do I not have a problem with that, I can frankly understand it. It's probably what I'd do if I were black.

We all vote for people who (for whatever reason - not just their color) remind us of ourselves. This is the reason I like Paul Ryan. Tall, thin, 40's, Irish, geeky numbers guy who comes across as more smart than charming. If that doesn't remind others of me, it does remind me of me.

There's really nothing wrong with voting for someone who reminds you of you. But it would be nice if when the person you voted for turned out to be incompetent, that maybe you admit to yourself that you might not be great at running the country either. But I know that's not very likely.

There's a photoshopped sign wandering around out there that says "I voted for Obama to prove I'm not a racist, and I'll be voting for someone else next to prove I'm to retarded."

I hope Samuel L. Jackson see's it before the election.

Friday, February 10, 2012

- Do You Smell Somehting?

- Speaking As A Bitter Clinger

Speaking as a bitter clinger, I hope this religious freedom issue that the Obama administration has accidentally stepped in will cost them in the election. It’s no secret that the left in general and the Obama administration in particular, are profoundly dedicated to the destruction of Christian morality. I know they say otherwise but - and I know you’re going to be surprised by this – I think they’re lying.

What they want… what they really want… is control. They want control over every aspect of your lives. The government is their church. The law is their guardian of morality. And if you’re a bitter clinger they will ridicule you, berate you, sue you, prosecute you, fine you, harass you, and present you with no end of bureaucratic obstacles in order to wrench that power from you individually, and from any other institution that they don’t directly control.

This is the progressive dream. The omniscient mandarins in Washington will issue commands for the rest of us, and we will kowtow and obey. And nothing is going to stand in their way. Not the rule of law, not the constitution, not the archaic institutions that we religious troglodytes still adhere to… nothing. They will stop at absolutely nothing. Period.

It doesn’t matter if they’re wrong. It doesn’t matter if their plans make things worse not better. It doesn’t matter if ‘the people’ don’t want what they’re offering. There will be more, more, more, more, more! They will have absolute rule, and they don’t care if they have to burn it all down to get it. If they thought they could get away with it, they would have no problem herding these disobedient Catholics into re-education camps to purge them of their silly superstitions. These are the people to whom we’ve given the reigns of government.

It’s not just Obama or Pelosi – although they both surely want the same thing. It’s not just the press – although they will cheer it on the whole way. It’s the entire movement. And that movement is winning. They are incrementally peeling away the constraints on them and their brethren. And with every tick of the clock, the odds of ever taking back the power that they've seized diminishes. Eventually their control will be so pervasive and so complete, that we will never be able to unwind it. And that point of no return is awfully near. Once we cross it, individual liberty – that pernicious idea that they’ve struggled for over a century to shatter – will finally be a thing of the past.

I hope there are some young liberals somewhere who are seeing this, and realizing what they’ve done by voting for these people. I hope it’s a mistake that they don’t feel the need to repeat. the DC progressives may have come for the Catholics first, but they’ll be coming for everyone else too.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

- A Few Minutes With Jonah Goldberg

You know him, you love him. He's one of the wise-cracking standard bearers of the intellectual right and the founder of NR online. Jonah Goldberg is always worth listening to, but I particularly enjoyed his description of Charles Murray's work because it so accurately maps to my personal experience.

But listen to the whole thing... you won't regret it.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

- One For The Annals....

... of half baked and idiotic ideas.

Only the left could conceive of such a dim witted idea. Only the left could somehow convince themselves that this kind of shameless confiscation of wealth would somehow lead to greater 'fairness'. Its yet another 'teacher's lounge' discussion given credence in the pages of The New York Times as if the consequences of it were somehow uncertain. Really - this is evidence of something that I've maintained for ages. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but some opinions are simply stupider than others. This would be one of those.

I've been feeling frustration lately. There are so many liberals out there who continue in their determination to ignore the real world. Instead, they want to build a new world where acts have been detached from their consequences. Where 'fairness' isn't based on merit, but on political connections. And the surest way to have yourself declared a villain, is to succeed. This really just takes the cake though.

Worst of all was watching Squawk box this morning and the palpable glee that devout leftists Andrew Ross Sorkin demonstrated while he raised the issue. He used the "Jon Stewart" defense ("I'm just asking the question here.") but it was impossible for him to hide his delight at the possibility of looting cash from the rich even before the rich actually called it their own.

That's what CNBC calls serious business news.

My wife and I watched him this AM and shook our heads. Eventually she said that the fountainhead idea is probably right. Just burn it all to the ground and eliminate the host to their parasite. Then when they're back under control simply start from scratch. Today I feel like she has a point.

The New York Times praises "The Zuckerberg Tax" designed to tax unrealized capital gains.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

- Obama's Bizarro World Continues...

The OWS crowd attacked policemen, looted Oakland city hall, halted traffic at one of the world's largest ports and has made numerous public statements about their plans to launch widespread illegal activity to disrupt the lives of peaceful citizens.

Meanwhile the Tea Party cleaned up their own garbage.

So who do we imagine is the real threat to America?

Obama's (and Eric holder's) FBI says its... wait for know it's going to be a surprise.....

Saturday, February 4, 2012

- The Case For More QE

QE (quantitative easing) does not cause inflation. This is a fact. We’ve had a ton of QE ourselves - over a trillion dollars worth, and inflation continues to be quite low. The Japanese have had two decades of QE, with little or no inflation to speak of in any of that time. So it’s a hard and fast fact that QE does not cause inflation. We need economic growth to get real inflation, and until we get it we won’t see any, QE or no QE.

But what QE does do is make the onset of inflation much more likely. And when that inflation does begin, its rate of increase will be much higher than it would be with a smaller monetary base. Inflation comes like Hamlet’s sorrow, “not in single spies but in battalions”. It always arrives suddenly, and increases rapidly. And with a larger monetary base, it will go from 2% to 10% in the time it might have taken to go from 2% to 3%. This is what makes QE so dangerous.

How high the level of inflation will rise will be a function of how we react when it first pokes up its head. If the first signs of inflation are greeted with aggressive increases in interest rates, then it’s possible to not have runaway inflation at all – no matter what your monetary base. But raising rates is tough politically, and raising them a lot is even tougher. So with lots of QE around, it’s likely that we’ll end up with more inflation than we like, simply because we can’t do what we must, even if we know we have to.

In spite of what you may hear in the more populist circles, Ben Bernanke is not stupid. He’s not trying to destroy America. I don’t believe he’s after any more power than he currently has or that he cares about using his position to increase his personal wealth. At least – there is nothing in his behavior that would lead a rational man to believe so. But what I think he really wants is what many men in his position want. I think he wants to be the hero. I think he wants to be the guy who saved America from the “second great depression.” I think he’s worried about his intellectual legacy.

You may not like this, but with the way our system is currently designed, that’s exactly what he’s supposed to be worried about. His vanity is supposed to drive him toward making the right decision for the good of the country, even if it’s politically unpopular. Our political system has a very short term (one election) view. But the Fed is independent in order to encourage the chairman and the board to do what they know what’s right in spite of that. The current system is designed to encourage them to remain above the political fray and to do what history will most revere them for.

In that context, I think Bernanke is doing OK. There is a perfectly valid intellectual debate about what specifically he’s doing, and opinions will differ. But I don’t think there is anyone out there who understands the process, who believes that he’s that far out of line. He’s taking what amounts to the conventional economic wisdom – right or wrong – and doing his best to implement a plan which reflects that. Men fail all the time. But I don't think you can reasonably make the argument that he isn't trying his best.

We’ve seen a big uptick in payroll numbers – a substantial portion of which is a result of technical adjustments to the number. Bernanke knows that as well as anyone, so I don’t think the current ‘good news’ about unemployment will change his plans much. I think we will continue to see more QE – and that economic growth will be mitigated by increased input costs. This will keep the overall growth level low. That may sound bad, or at least worse than rapid growth. But it has the upside of preventing the fiscal bankruptcy of the nation that would come from rapidly increased interest cost.

In effect, I think QE with all its negative consequences, is really just buying us time. In the autumn we will likely get a more responsible congress and a change of administrations in the Whitehouse. We can then begin to dismantle some of the bureaucratic cholesterol that’s clogging the nation’s economic veins and putting the country on a more fiscally sustainable path. Until then, QE will keep the patient alive. It’s like an artificially induced coma, designed to give us enough time to heal. It’s dangerous, but I think it’s less dangerous than the alternative.

- The Forgotten Man

A compelling painting by Utah artist Jon McNaughton.

I particularly like the way the Roosevelt's, Clinton, and Wilson are all depicted applauding the way Obama is trampling the constitution (with Wilson skulking behind them) while the more 'conservative' presidents are equally upset by it.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

- A Note For A Friend...

In some ways, for the person who does it, winning is as bad as losing. But one day you're not in the club and the next day you're in. Don't feel bad about winning. You're gonna spend your whole life leaving people behind if things go the way you hope. And the people who are really your friends will cheer you the whole way. It doesn't make you an a**hole to get what you want.

Not all the guys that win, are bad guys.

(And get everything they promise, in writing.)

- Why I Really Don't Care About The Poor

When my father in law came to this country from a refugee camp in Europe, he did so in accordance with the law. At the time, all he had to his name was $460 dollars, two suitcases, and the clothes on his, his wife's, and his then tween daughter's back.

The year was 1976.

His English was never great, and is still heavily accented. He had only a third grade 'formal' education - enough to read and write Hungarian, and just a little English. But he worked hard, saved his money, bought his bosses business from him, worked even harder, and retired 18 years later in 1994, as a multi-millioniare.

He says there is no excuse for being poor in this country, and I think he's absolutely right. You may not end up a billionaire, but I'm absolutely convinced that no one is really poor in this country unless they choose to be.

Too harsh? Tell it to someone who came from the rich side of the tracks.

- Putting The 'Duh' Back In Florida

The title above is how my oldest friend, a long time resident of Sarasota, originally described the whole 'hanging chad' Bush Vs Gore recount debacle. I'm reminded of it today because it turns out the Newt Gingrich has all the class of St. Al.

Newt Gingrich’s campaign says it will challenge Florida’s delegation to the GOP national convention, and at least one member of the Republican National Committee thinks it has cause.

Cause or no, this seems petty and pointless to me. I know it's not the same thing, I know this is an intra-party issue that will be settled without the courts and won't involve calls for partial (Democrat counties only) recounts and partisan bickering. But I think the protest makes Gingrich look horribly petty and small... just like Al did.

- Size Matters

Count me among the ranks of 'Bigger is Better" when it comes to concealed carry pistol rounds. I don't necessarily feel that way about rifles, but with pistols, I truly believe that a larger round has a better chance of doing what you need it to... making the person on the receiving end stop in his tracks.

The .380 has the virtue of being completely concealable. That's particularly important in the greater NYC are where you're almost certainly breaking the law if you carry concealed. But in my opinion it just doesn't do the job... or rather... it will do the job with too low a probability, for me to be comfortable.

Thanks to modern engineering, there are new just a few 9mm pistols which can also be as well concealed as the .380's. I'm personally a fan of the Diamondback DB9, and Vinny my Transfer agent, carries a Rohrbaugh R9. Both are concealable in a hip pocket and will look like nothing more than a bulky wallet with the right holster.

The cops I know (who don't have to fear NY/NJ handgun laws like the rest of us) all carry .45 acp's. For some jobs, size does matter.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

- Not Completely Crazy

This is really for my buddy Gary the Physicist, who thinks that over the very long term, hedging our planetary risk should be one of humanity's biggest priorities. He's right of course (he usually is). There is little doubt that sooner or later something big is going to hit the earth and when it does, it's going to hurt. If we have a self sustaining human colony someplace else, we hedge our risk as a species in a very big way.

That's one of those college dorm room conversations. But thanks to the costs when you talk about actually doing it, it immediately becomes a 'not today' sort of endeavor. But this idea appeals to the investment manager in me. It's a way to bring the constraints which are immediately applied by the free market to the space program, which has never really benefited from them. It's the difference between the way that Solyndra was built and the way that was built. The incentives for growth are all different.

Even with our current financial issues I personally wouldn't object to seeing a 5 or 10 billion dollar prize for 'big efforts' like this one. This is really the best way for government to get involved if they're going to. Public funded, not publicly provided.

But I still don't think it's an issue to run for President on.