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Government shutdown

And this would be a bad thing how?

I know what CNN is saying.

But realistically, why would a government shutdown be bad?

We know what Milton Friedman said.
Pretty much everything else could be done better by the states or the private sector.

If your local grocery store closed because they forgot to order, you'd go somewhere else. If the plumber you called couldn't come because his truck got repossessed, you'd call another. If your favorite coffee place had no one to work and was closed, well, there are other options.

But with government services, there aren't options.

Government doesn't like competition.

Every year, statists tell you How Important Government Is and how the "other party" is about to screw up your life.

It's political theater.

There isn't even a budget.

The last time there was officially a budget was 2009. But it was pretty much a budget in name only. Even if there was a budget, it would be several thousand pages long, incredibly detailed on some things and disturbingly vague on others. It's meant to be abused. I don't want to examine the Federal budget process here but I will tell you that even if Congress makes no changes, each agency gets the same amount it had the previous year plus an automatic increase. This is the so-called discretionary spending.

That's right. It takes an act of Congress to keep spending at the same level it was in the previous year.

The default setting is more government and more spending.

Then there is the mandatory spending which isn't part of the budget process. Congress may revisit the rules every few years on mandatory spending qualifications, but it usually rolls along on it's own. Mandatory spending is about two-thirds of the budget, Social Security alone is about one-third.

And I haven't even gotten to earmarks.

Government doesn't like competition so it locks private interests out of the services it provides. It manipulates you into blaming the other party so it can tax and spend more of your money. And it expects thanks for it's hard work.

Government shutdown.

This would be a bad thing how?



The Bad Manners of the Campus Left

What the hooligans last Thursday at my lecture in Colorado were objecting to was a very different kind of invasion—a peaceful, voluntary offering of ideas they were unaware of, didn’t want to hear, and thought it was their right to prevent others from hearing. Their intent was to intimidate, to harass, to silence, to dominate. This is not conduct that a citadel of education should tolerate for an instant.

Interesting, isn’t it, that what some go to college for, others find “offensive.” As I watched the incident occur, I thought to myself, “I’m standing in a taxpayer-funded institution of supposedly ‘higher’ education, not a Khmer Rouge re-education camp, for crying out loud!”
     — Lawrence W. Reed


“Why They Attack Us & Why We Let Them” by Roaming Millennial


Newspeak devours free speech

What ‘Snowflakes’ Get Right About Free Speech

Instead of defining freedom of expression as guaranteeing the robust debate from which the truth emerges, Lyotard focused on the asymmetry of different positions when personal experience is challenged by abstract arguments. His extreme example was Holocaust denial, where invidious but often well-publicized cranks confronted survivors with the absurd challenge to produce incontrovertible eyewitness evidence of their experience of the killing machines set up by the Nazis to exterminate the Jews of Europe. Not only was such evidence unavailable, but it also challenged the Jewish survivors to produce evidence of their own legitimacy in a discourse that had systematically denied their humanity.

Lyotard shifted attention away from the content of free speech to the way certain topics restrict speech as a public good. Some things are unmentionable and undebatable, but not because they offend the sensibilities of the sheltered young. Some topics, such as claims that some human beings are by definition inferior to others, or illegal or unworthy of legal standing, are not open to debate because such people cannot debate them on the same terms.

The recent student demonstrations at Auburn against Spencer’s visit — as well as protests on other campuses against Charles Murray, Milo Yiannopoulos and others — should be understood as an attempt to ensure the conditions of free speech for a greater group of people, rather than censorship. Liberal free-speech advocates rush to point out that the views of these individuals must be heard first to be rejected. But this is not the case. Universities invite speakers not chiefly to present otherwise unavailable discoveries, but to present to the public views they have presented elsewhere. When those views invalidate the humanity of some people, they restrict speech as a public good.
     — Ulrich Baer

h/t Bookworm Room



propagandistic language marked by euphemism, circumlocution, and the inversion of customary meanings
     — Merriam-Webster

Newspeak is the language of Oceania, a fictional totalitarian state ruled by the Party, who created the language to meet the ideological requirements of English Socialism (Ingsoc).In George Orwell's world of Nineteen Eighty-Four, Newspeak is a controlled language, of restricted grammar and limited vocabulary, a linguistic design meant to limit the freedom of thought—personal identity, self-expression, free will—that ideologically threatens the régime of Big Brother and the Party, who thus criminalised such concepts as thoughtcrime, contradictions of Ingsoc orthodoxy.
     — Wikipedia


NeoNotes - “Adding CO2 to the atmosphere is bad” - updated

Pardon, but we don't know that. What we do know is that I breath out CO2, the lizard hiding in my garden wall breaths out CO2, and so does the raven that I shared my breakfast blueberries with. We know that every animal on the planet puts out CO2 and has for billions of years. We know the World has systems that we don't begin to understand.

We know that atmospheric CO2 may influence weather (not climate) in combination with the amount of water in the atmosphere, the altitude of clouds, the amount of absorbent and reflective surfaces (and how much they reflect or absorb), the amount of particulates, and many other factors. All of which constantly change.

We know that most climate models use a "carbon cascade effect" that has never been measured or even observed. We know that the climate models are notoriously inaccurate. We know that in any other field of science and technology, models that can't predict means that the models get junked.

Pardon, but is anything I said about CO2 wrong?

Doesn't CO2's effect on atmospheric warming depend on the other variables I listed?

Do you really want me to list all the times this planet's climate has shifted before humanity could make any measurable impact on the planet? Climate shifts, that's what it does.

Do you really want me to point out the differences between ice at the polar interiors and ice at the edges? Do you really want me to point out that ice shreds all the time, that's why we have icebergs?

The model you cited can predict and explain, that's why it got tweaked. The climate models can't predict.

No, it's thinking before taking action.

Given that laws can have bad effects, last a while once passed, and can be very hard to get rid of, ask yourself if a law is the best way to get things done.

I'm not standing against change.

I'm standing against using to law to force change on everyone.

We live on a planet that has creatures that consume carbon dioxide by the metric ton. Yet no one talks about planting. Did you know that Arbor Day is coming up?

Do you remember reading about the Ice Ages? How sheets of ice moved over the continents? Do you remember how in the 1970s the environmental fear was global freezing?

I think I've taken this topic about as far as it's worth and probably a bit beyond. I started talking about how Earth Day was hijacked for a political agenda. No one here denied that, everyone just kept telling me how that was a Good Thing because you know, climate change. Which might or might not happen if the wrong butterfly flaps it's wings while I open my refrigerator door.

What everyone seems to forget is that Gaia is a living thing. She's been regulating herself for longer than there have been mammals on the planet. She'll be doing it long after we're dust.

NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.


Official Solution®

Once there is an Official Solution® even if it's a really really bad one, government will resist any attempt to make it better.
     — NeoWayland

What a liberal university used to mean

In defense of the offensive

I recall my elementary school science teacher’s story of when a Neo-Nazi gave a speech at UC Berkeley in the mid-60s. It was her first year there, and she was unsure what to make of the atmosphere. Around 250 Berkeley students and community members listened carefully as the Nazi spoke. As a Jew whose family had recently fled Europe because of anti-Semitism, the talk was shocking. But she stayed and listened politely like the other students. After the talk was over, the audience did not rush the stage, chant or even call the man names. They were even more devastating. They asked questions using logic and history, confusing and confounding the unabashed racist. They made him look like a fool. Somewhere along the way, the bulk of college progressives abandoned this method of dealing with people with whom we disagree.

I know my example is extreme. You may justifiably say it’s unreasonable to expect students to be respectful of those promoting genocide, but the targets of political censorship in 2017 are not limited to Neo-Nazis, or even alt-right trolls. Middlebury students silenced social scientist Charles Murray by shouting “Racist, sexist, anti-gay. Charles Murray, go away” before destroying his car. Berkeley students attempted to cancel a speech by liberal comedian Bill Maher because of his comments criticizing radical Islam. If we have the intellectual tools to debate these people on a level ground, it should be unnecessary to silence them. Macalester students have the privilege of getting one of the greatest educations in the history of mankind. It is counterproductive to deprive ourselves of conversations that might make us uncomfortable. These conversations are as rewarding as they are difficult, but they require us to talk to those who offend us, instead of isolating and humiliating them. As Victorian novelist Goerge Eliot put it, “the last refuge of intolerance is in not tolerating the intolerant.”
     — Jacob Hill

A microcosm of the maddening mix of Progressive hate, ignorance, and nonsense at an American college

Unlike those other American colleges, however, Macalester is never in the news. I suspect this is because no student or faculty member would ever dream of inviting to the campus someone who doesn’t meet the Progressive purity scale. Without any opposing views, there is no call for violence.

It was therefore a great and pleasant surprise to discover that one young man is defending the free exchange of ideas. What moved Jacob Hill to write was the fact that the staff of the college radio station, perfectly emulating a Maoist re-education camp, grouped together to castigate a fellow employee for having dared to place on the college Facebook page a meme that “satirized the prevalence of white Adidas sneakers among women who claim not to conform to societal norms.” I’m having trouble envisioning how offensive such a meme could be but for the student’s cohorts at the radio station, it was a bridge too far.
     — Bookworm


“American Indians Are Still Getting a Raw Deal”

“American Indians are the poorest of all of America's ethnic groups. Why?”


NeoNotes - Best intentions - updated

The problem is that the best intentions can lead to the worst results.


“Your Brain On Drug Policy” featuring Rachael Leigh Cook

“Rachael Leigh Cook explains that the war on drugs is a war on people in a remake of her iconic spot”


Somebody KNEW

“Feds knew of 700 Wells Fargo whistleblower cases in 2010”


Roaming Millennial on Berkeley Lies!

“DaddyOFive Faking It? + Berkeley Lies!”