Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
Hat tip to blogger friend Rick.
Greg Plum has gotten hold of a memo from the DCCC leadership that says no. No matter how bad our product is, there’s no revolution coming.
Republicans will need to win 39 seats to take back the House. Democrats will win at least four Republican seats (the best opportunities include: LA-02, HI-01, IL-10, DE-AL, FL-25). As a result, the real number of seats Republicans will have to pick up to win a majority is at least 43. To win 43 seats, the NRCC would need to put 70 to 80 seats in play. The NRCC have simply not put that many Republicans seats in play and do not have the resources or caliber of candidates to do so.
They still have a lot to worry about, IMO. Exhibit A: They’re worried! Now, why are they worried? Supposedly we had a revolution back in ’08, and put some wise, benevolent spiritual leaders in place who have been toppling the old ways and erecting a government that works for “everybody.” The Death Star is all exploded and there’s nothing left to do but dance with the Ewoks on the Endor forest moon.
How could we ever back away from that? Who’d want to? If the policies are the best ones that work “for everybody.”
Well, it seems there is a feeling in the air that the Obama delivery is not equal to the Obama promise:
Last month Ben Bernanke, the chairman of the Fed, warned America that without more care being taken it could have a Greece-style debt problem. The president seemed to regard this warning as so self-evidently absurd that he quickly asked Congress for another $50 billion for various social projects. Last week, benefits for the long-term unemployed were extended for another six months at a cost of $34 billion. The health care programme is forecast to cost at least $863 billion. The total deficit this year is to be $1.47 trillion. America’s debt is likely to be $18.5 trillion by 2020, though it will be so low as that only if growth is maintained at 4 per cent: it is currently 3 per cent, and rocky.
Unemployment is 9.5 per cent and forecast to stay there for the time being. There are three million more jobless than when Mr Obama came to power, and unemployment among teenagers is around 25 per cent. The very constituencies to which he made his greatest appeal – the young and the disadvantaged – still suffer. This is despite the $787 billion stimulus programme last year, much of which was sucked into America’s corrupt and inefficient local government system, or did favours for congressmen and senators, or provided wonderful pay days for trade unionists, or in some cases all three at once. The President sought the stimulus on the grounds that it would stop unemployment rising above 8 per cent; so that has been an expensive failure. All Mr Obama appears to have done is wave the money goodbye. Last week, trying not to sound provoked, Mr Bernanke announced that there was “unusual uncertainty” about economic recovery. The dollar fell against sterling and even the euro.
Mr Bernanke wants a renewal of Bush-era tax cuts for people earning over $250,000 a year, which are due to expire on December 31. So do many Democrats, who fear that removing incentives and purchasing power from the better-off will harm recovery by reducing consumption and employment. These are arguments familiar from Britain, about the equally damaging and pointless 50 per cent rate. The response, by Timothy Geithner, the Treasury Secretary, is familiar too – the “rich” must take their share of the burden. It is equally specious here; the political importance of bashing the (presumably Republican) wealthy plainly exceeds what is good for the US economy.
What we’re seeing is not so much a discredit to liberal politics, or Mr. Obama, or Keynesian economics — but rather to the idea that government needs to be in the equalization business. Remember the comments to Joe the Plumber? “I just think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody”?
Government cannot do this because government doesn’t have an off switch. It inherently lacks the ability to say “Okay that’s it, you’re not a bad dude anymore because you’ve paid your fair share. You’re not rich anymore, you’re no longer evil, we’ve hired enough women that men no longer enjoy an opprobrious statistical advantage, we can stop subtracting test points from Asian students now.”
The task of equalizing something carries with it an implicit expectation of the ability to monitor; to measure. The story of “civilized” governments identifying specific demographics for a run of gettin’-even-with-em-ism, is much older than the American republic herself. This monitoring, spotting, declaring the equalization to be all fine & good mission-accomplished, is something that has never taken place. In short: All we’ve seen these governments do is identify good guys and bad guys. Assume a comfortable position and let the pummeling begin.
I remember from thirty-two years ago that this is how Carter lost his job. It wasn’t a fiery rage, and it isn’t that in the here & now, against Obama. At least, the feelings are not nearly as inflamed as they were four years ago against George Bush, on the other side.
Rather, there’s just a muted, but palpable, feeling of what can best be described as fatigue. The shopping spree is over. We can’t afford any more of it. And maybe the reason we can’t afford any more of it isn’t quite so much that it’s an overindulgence of a good thing…but that it was just a stupid idea from the very start. We’re waking up. Believing in ourselves. It’s always the first step to really solving a problem, you know.
And you can’t support Obama if you believe in yourself. He’s worked hard for a long time to make Himself the perfect walking incarnation of paternalistic government, the feeling of co-dependency that goes with it, helplessness, and truckloads and truckloads of guilt.
Time to move on.
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