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Archive for May 7th, 2010

Nobody’s listening to the mainstream media anymore

All the negative spin and disinformation by the mainstream media regarding the Arizona immigration law has resulted in…growing support for it:

What this poll says is that despite weeks of national-media coverage that was unrelentingly negative, calling the bill racist, drawing Nazi analogies, etc. — only 15 percent are really against it. Sorry guys — you’re still talking, but people aren’t listening.

Of course those “This is Our Continent” banners and Mexican students offended by the American flag on Cinco de Mayo may be having something to do with it, too.

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Political correctness is a one-way street to societal suicide

On the one hand we tell high school kids they can’t wear the American flag on a t-shirt on a completely non-American pseudo holiday because it might offend Mexicans or Mexican-Americans. But on the other we have to accede without protest to the truly obscene proposal to build a 13-story mosque adjacent to Ground Zero, as if there were no other location that would do.

In both of these cases those designated aggrieved minorities by the insanity of political correctness are pushing their demands to the limit just to antagonize the majority. The high school kids were called insensitive for wearing their shirts, but the Muslims are not insensitive to the memory of 9/11, nor the Mexican kids who said the American flag is offensive. Political correctness goes only one way. It demands things from anyone too successful, too conservative, or too Caucasian, that it doesn’t demand from anyone else.

At some point a society that wants to survive needs to to finally say, “Enough!”

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The difference between here and there

A friend (well, an acquaintance, really) recently asserted that Europe is no more socialist than we are here in the United States, and that citizens there have no less freedom than we. “They’ve got capitalism, don’t they?” he asked. This particular person has never lived in Europe, so all he sees are the Mercedes and Ferraris that we import and assume it’s just like it is here.

Well, I’ve lived in Europe for at total of 10 years, and while I love it, I would never want to live there permanently. An American blogger who is leaving Germany after 15 years explains what rubs Americans the wrong way about Europe (this applies not just to Germany, by the way) when they have to live there for any length of time:

The rules. Frankly, there are about forty thousand rules to living your life in Germany. Don’t wash your car on Sundays. Don’t mow grass between 1400 and 1600. Walk your dog only in these locations. I could go on and on. I’m surprised the base doesn’t have a 4-hour lecture on German rules to keep guys out of trouble as they arrive for the first time. I came to hate the massive list of rules. Some did make sense….the other fifty percent….didn’t. I won’t miss this kind of atmosphere.

It sounds a bit like Chapel Hill.

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President Obama wants Americans to believe that an increase in the unemployment rate is good news. I wonder how my unemployed friend is going to react when I tell him that, despite the really tough time his family is enduring right now, his continued unemployment is actually good news.

The president’s predictable spin aside, check out these presidential comments courtesy of politico.com:

Still, state and local governments with “huge budget caps” that have been forced to lay off “essential public servants” have harmed communities as well as “the economy as a whole,” he said. “We are working with Congress to find ways to keep our teachers in the classrooms, the police officers on the beat, and firefighters on call,” he said.

“We’re not going to rest until we’ve put this difficult chapter behind us,” he said.

Hmm. So we will dive even further into deficit and astronomical debt, and that is going to get this country out of this fiscal mess? If that’s the case, then let’s hand over the federal budget to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger since he’s doing such as an outstanding job putting California’s difficult chapter behind them. Or maybe we should look to Greece for tips.

Actually, we should look to Steve Forbes for guidance.

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13th Dist. Runoff Debate: Bill Randall vs. Bernie Reeves

The fascinating 13th District runoff for U.S. Congress will include a May 13 debate between Bill Randall and Bernie Reeves, who finished neck in neck in Thursday’s GOP primary. The News and Observer reports that the debate is sponsored by the Northern Wake Republican Club.

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Libertarians: The Rodney Dangerfields of Tuesday’s Vote

Here’s another laugh-out-loud funny blog from Mike Munger, the most well known Libertarian in North Carolina. Mike, of course, garnered more than 2 percent of the vote in the 2008 gubernatorial election and is a renowned professor at Duke University. Well, guess what happened when Munger went to vote Tuesday? The headline of his blog gives you a hint. Enjoy.

Libertarians Dissed, and I Commit Election Fraud

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Behavioral Econ Prof: Calorie Labeling Regulations Useless

The nanny-staters are feeling really good about themselves, now that restaurants will be required to post calorie counts, thanks to the federal health insurance law. The regulation applies to vending machines as well.

As with all regulations, the impacted businesses will incur new costs to comply with the regulations — and guess who will end up paying those? This is why regulations are, in essence, a hidden tax on business and consumers.

The bigger problem, however, is that posting calories has little or no effect on what people consume. Duke University behavioral economics professor Dan Airely explains in an interview with Marketplace. (emphasis is mine)

RYSSDAL: All right, so let’s cut to the chase. These calorie labels that we are seeing in some places, and now we’ll see in way more places, do they work?

ARIELY: So far the evidence is no. You put them up, and you would think that they would be very helpful, right? You tell people what the calories are, but all the research done so far, ours and other people, show that this doesn’t work. Basically we got the help of one fast-food Chinese place, we had them holed off for a while, so we could track what people were doing. Then they put calorie labeling, we tracked what people were doing. Turns out the effect is very, very close to zero.

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