2012-07-30

T.C. Likes Olympic Boxing

One sport I will be watching with interest is boxing.

For a number of reasons.

I love boxing. It's one of the first sports I ever watched live. Crammed in the old, smoke filled, Paul Sauve Arena and its collection of assorted characters, my father would take my brother and I to watch local fights. In these politically correct, health paranoia days, venues like Paul Sauve are sadly long gone.

Olympic boxing is one of the original sports. I tend to prefer watching the classics.

In London, boxing has an interesting plot in that the Cubans failed to win a gold medal (7 medals) in Beijing and the United States won just one medal. Olympic boxing as you should know, has been the net dominant domain of the United States, and since 1972 Cuba.

We talk a lot about pro teams and nations that dominate sports and Cuba's dominance of boxing is right up there with the best of them.

It will be interesting to see if both of these boxing powerhouses get back to their usual winning ways.

Here's a link to the all-time medals table. USA, Cuba and Italy lead in terms of gold medals.

Canada for its part, has a solid and proud boxing tradition at the Olympics. Let's see how they do.

Liberal Economics: It's All About Infrastructure

What is this obsession on the left with fricken roads and bridges? As if infrastructure is a means to an economic end.

That's not the worse of what this commercial attempts to sell.

Elizabeth "Paving Roads You Didn't Build With Wolves and Tears" Warren chooses to make her point by encouraging America to look to communist China.

Comparing the U.S. to China is like comparing Sweden to England during the Industrial Revolution. One country has a lot of  "catching up to do." It's only natural China, like Sweden before them, will open the purses for things America already has in place.

The U.S. should be looking elsewhere.

Why not, I don't know, propose shoving money in new technologies? Why always in old, mature (and sometimes failed or losing) industries where the benefit is usually a "one shot deal?"

It's stale stuff.

Not saying the government shouldn't be investing in infrastructure. Although I never bought into the notion "roads won't be built without them" logic.

Just wondering why this is a key to economic policy. Enough for them to make a commercial aired during the Olympics.



2012-07-29

WWII Seaplane Found In Quebec Waters

70 years later, mission discovered.

With video.

Hero Worship Can Have Its Bad Side

Scary stuff in NYC.

More On Obama

Boomer Musings offers this view on Obama's "you didn't build that...roads, blah, blah" comment.

Yes. I'm annoyed by what he said. I'm equally annoyed by people who defend it.

Made In Canada: London 2012 Cycling

Women's road race saw two Cervelo bikes place in the top three - 2nd and 3rd. Giant - American-Taiwanese - won the gold.

Nice Try Jonathan Chait

Chait (NY Magazine) chimes in claiming the response and reaction to Obama's "you didn't build that" is, surprise, racist.

No Mr. Chait. No. The President got the reaction he richly deserves.

He failed not because he's black but because it was a terrible and pointless speech.

His response available on youtube was even more outrageous because what he claims in the video was NOT mentioned in the speech. 

Why didn't he JUST SAY this? He's rearranging the message here:

2012-07-28

London 2012 Is Off To A Bad Start

Speaking strictly as a sports fan, the IOC dropped the ball when it refused a moment of silence for the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes in Munich in 1972.

The operative word being "athletes." As in these people were Olympians.

I suppose the request was a foregone conclusion, what with the games being held in a politically correct nation given to them by a politically correct organization of the IOC.

The President of the IOC Jacques Rogge did little to offer a valiant or acceptable reason for not doing so choosing instead to chicken out.

Sad.

The IOC is a corrupt political entity onto itself much like FIFA. Denying Israel's request was a sham and only further embeds the utter hypocrisy (very much like the UN) of this organization.

It's a shame really. It's not about politics but athletics. Or supposed to be anyway.

I don't want to believe it but it's hard not to think the reason they chose to was because it was Israel.

Heavy Hand Of Regulation Costs Us Dearly

The rate of regulation exceeds the rate of deregulation.

That's how I see it.

It's very surprising that it hasn't hit people in the head yet that crony capitalism is a direct result of heavy regulations designed by special interest and supported by the state.

The cost of that red tape is incalculable and goes under the title of "waste and corruption."

2012-07-27

The Big Bang Theory Of Building

So that's where Obama gets his ideas.

Nice.

Whoever this Lakoff guy is, I notice he's a linguist. Like Chomsky. What's up with these lefty polito-linguistics?

Before God, there was the government...Bang!

2012-07-26

Laval Needs To Rethink Its Rules

Kids should never, ever be ticketed for playing. Ever.

Dog owners managed to make their way into this particular soccer field. The dog's nails tears it all up and the dogs also defecate on the Astroturf and they don't pick it up. We've had complaints, we had to act and we did," said Laval police Const. Franco Di Genova.
So, fine the dog owners. Leave the kids alone.

Trademark Letter And Striking Joe Paterno

I'm not a trademark expert but this is an interesting lawyer's letter regarding Jack Daniel's via Volokh.

Trademark logos are trickier but when it comes to single words, it tends to get a little absurd. No one should have a trademark or patent on a word.

***

Sticking with Volokh, a legal angle here

What happened at Penn St. was awful and brings into picture about - among other things - our moral obligations in life, but striking Penn State's wins between 1998-2011 was to remove Joe Paterno from the record books.

Didn't  Paterno win those games fair and square? And what about the players who were a part of those wins?

I guess people are just plain disappointed in Paterno. When they discovered he was a mere mortal they reacted predictably.






Petty Tyrants In Big Towns

I'll be sure to have a Chick-Fil-A when I'm in the States.

What the Mayors of Chicago and Boston are doing is frightening. Not saying they're wrong in their opinions but that they would leverage their power against someone who holds a different view from them is intellectually heinous.

Once again from the top: Freedom of speech.

If I understand it correctly, Menino is preventing Wal-Mart from getting into Boston.

Meanwhile, Rahm Emanuel - you're gonna love this - enlists Louis Farrakhan's Army (noted anti-semite and anti-gay figure of the Nation of Islam) to police the streets of Chicago!

From one of the posters:

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. Their very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be ‘cured’ against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals. "—C. S. Lewis, God in the Dock

I see it everyday in my business.

2012-07-25

Sherman Hemsley Dead at 74

My father, an Italian immigrant, loved George Jefferson.

Movie Clip: Shawshank Redemption; All About Eve




I didn't see Shawshank Redemption until years after it was released in 1994. For over 10 years it was a movie I often heard praised by anyone and everyone. It's one of those "you just have to watch" movies if you're into this art form. I don't think I've ever met anyone who doesn't like this film which happens to be on the AFI 100 list. Shawshank simply resonated with people. I know I enjoyed it very much.

The opera duet you hear in the clip is a libretto called Sull'Aria from Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro. The libretto was written by the Venetian composer and poet Lorenzo da Ponte.

Although the duet is about exposing infidelity, it symbolizes freedom in this scene.

It's all about freedom.

***

Speaking of great masterpieces. My wife and I watched All About Eve the other night. Magnificent acting and script. It covers many themes from psychology and obsession of celebrity culture, succeeding at all costs, the intricacies of friendship both negative and positive, egotism, ambition, to name a few.

I can see why it was ranked 18th on the AFI.

Anne Baxter, Celeste Holm (who died this year) and Bette Davis were a thrill to watch.


Arm More Grandpas!



Love this. He's Bat-Man.

Merci, Mr. Skeptical Eye.

2012-07-24

A Small Piece Of Italiana-Americana

I love stories like the one I saw on History Detectives earlier. The detective went on a fact searching mission tracing back a KKK song from the early 1920s.

It eventually brought him to the company that recorded the song The Starr Piano Company of which Gennett Recording* was a subsidiary.

The Gennett Recording Company, turns out, was established by the Gannette's who were born in America with Italian ancestry. The company was the "cradle of recorded jazz" (as the link to Starr Piano discusses) having recorded King Oliver (I own a K.O. record - for the record) and one Louis Armstrong as History Detectives discovered.

As for the KKK song, it was a rip-off from a Protestant spiritual hymn.

Great little story. Actually, the entire episode was fantastic; loved watching musicians Dennis Coffey and James Jamerson jr and all the rich Motown history that came with it.

Question: If you owned a cultural and historical antique or relic of significance but discovered it had been stolen originally, would you return it to its rightful owners?

I know I would.

*Though I could have sworn the spelling on the abandoned building was 'Gennette' it's spelled Genett.

Eagles Are Awesome

This is crazy shit. Mongolians training eagles to hunt wolves.

ACL Watch

Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose blew his ACL in late April against (my) Philadelphia 76ers. Him going down helped the Sixers win the series no doubt about it.

There were murmurs he could be back at the start of the season which would put him in line with all the craziness of early returns following ACL surgeries we've been hearing lately.

However, reports are coming out that he'll likely be back in March of next year. This makes perfect sense since that's the traditional time frame for full recovery.

The question is, what do the Bulls do now that they don't have one of the league's best PG in the line-up?

2012-07-23

Quoting Is Not An Argument

I know Pat Buchanan is not exactly a popular figure but this article about his book in TPM is bush league.

If you're going to assert he's crazy then it's not enough to pull quotes from his book and just post them without a rebuttal. "Oh, look it's that nut job paleo-con!"

I don't see what's crazy or racist about what he's claiming. It's racey I'll give you that. It certainly raises an eyebrow among the politcally correct and it may indeed be up for easy refuting, so why not do so?

MLB Hall Of Fame: Larkin And Santo In

Barry Larkin (2nd baseman Cincinnati Reds) and Ron Santo (3rd baseman Chicago Cubs) were inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame this past week.

I'm not going to get into whether they each deserve to be but what I find bizarre is why did it take so long for Santo to get in?

Was Larkin that much "better" or "dominant" than Santo who needed to get in posthumously through the Veterans Committee?

Here's how each player stacks up against the 235 HOFamers in select categories:

Home runs:
Santo 35th (above HOF avg.)
Larkin 63rd

Runs:
Santo 103rd
Larkin 66th (above HOF avg.)

Batting average:
Santo: 126th
Larkin: 94th

Hits:
Santo: 89th
Larkin: 79th

OPS:
Santo: 82nd
Larkin: 93rd

WAR:
Santo: 48th (above HOF avg.)
Larkin: 47th (above HOF avg.)

Walks:
Santo: 33rd (above HOF avg.)
Larkin: 55th

Stolen Bases:
Santo: 143th
Larkin: 29th (above HOF avg.)

Have A Free Website

I haven't tried it but I will definitely be looking into Webstarts.

Blast From The Past: JFK Speech

From Convention Hall in Philadelphia, 1960.

It's interesting that some of his beliefs - on home ownership for example - is not that different from Clinton or even Obama as far as Democrats go. Whether he was willing to go as far as Clinton I don't know.

Where I do see a decided break between the three is Clinton and JFK weren't hostile to business. They understood business is the backbone - even the raison d'etre - of American enterprise. It's what Americans do best. I'm not so sure Obama is that into business - and it's beginning to show.

The Left's Love Of Government Internet

They kinda overplay the role of government. Fact is, it's private enterprise that made it the social phenomena that it is. Just don't tell Obama. Or Elizabeth Warren.

Somebody else did that. Without those roads...

2012-07-22

Appalling Quote Of The Day

Yes, Ms. Matthews. Canadians are appalled.

But not for this outrageous comment:

"I was appalled when I saw how many were making in excess of $1 million," Deb Matthews said, referring to a list that counted over 400 names in 2010.

"Some doctors are getting paid too much. We need to address the issue of relativity. Some doctors in some specialties are earning a fraction of what doctors in other specialties are earning."

More for this.

Slashing the budget by $338 million is a disgrace in lieu of how much the government has lost. A pure cynical move on the part of the Liberals.

It's not salaries or what people earn that's bad in society, it's the waste and corruption that costs society dearly. There's no greater sewer of corruption in this country than in health.

Be successful, but not too successful is Canada's motto, while in America it's an entrepreneur is only as strong as the state that backs it.

Like I've said, communistic thinking by other means.

Liberals Forget Art Of Arguing?

I often hear from liberals lamenting they don't fight like conservatives. They've taken, it seems, to presenting themselves as victims of a punishing conservative counter-punch in contemporary politics.

I don't know if it's true but if it is, I can only surmise that maybe this is so because liberals have wielded special influence over the public imagination for the better part of the post-war era. It is the triumph of liberal ideas that has led to a conservative push back.

The totality of their grip was such that their ideas no longer needed, or so they may have felt, defending since they became common. The prevailing default posture was to be liberal.

Since the 1960s, the conservative movement has mobilized and gone on the attack and this leaves liberals dazed and confused to the point their only rebuttal is "b-but, we have the monopoly on progress and therefore truth!"

They no longer articulate and debate as well as they think.

This perhaps, is why it's been claimed there's a liberal "bias" on college and university campuses and in the media?

As far as I can tell, both sides are well-represented on television, radio, magazine publications and newspapers. Maybe an argument can be made that the slight edge goes to the left because they've done so well mastering the art of intellectual seduction over the years.

Whether empirical evidence or science was ever in their favor is fast becoming a subject of debate on the right side of the equation.

Where conservatives have a net advantage, I think, is on the Internet with blogs in particular. Conservatives are ready to defend the cause using blogs.

If liberals are to remove the stench of smugness and loss of arguing skills, they have to first rediscover what they believe in. There are indeed liberal outlets that do believe in their cause but it has to find a way back into our collective imagination.

At the moment, personally, they have a lot of work to do. 

Merely using a subliminal "because we say so" message (liberals always act stunned when people don't support them) or arguing in a way that leads people to conclude all liberals thoughts and ideas conclude with tax hikes, government interference or state coercion is increasingly being questioned.

And those doing the questioning don't mind doing it online.

Rebranding time?

Two Canadian Companies Compete To Win Health Market Share

A lot is being said about the need to make healthy food choices in our lives. Unfortunately, as usual, proponents of the 'eat right' crowd seek to push their agenda through legislation.

Changing eating habits is not easy but that's something best left up to the consumer to decide. Not a politician.

Grocery stores now offer a wide array of healthy alternatives to various foods and they get to do that because companies often provide consumers with choice.

Don't like bread made with vegetable oil? No problem. Buy the one made with olive oil. Don't like white bread? Buy Spelt. Or whole wheat. Or Kamut. Or 14 ancient grains.

It's not just bread. Dairy has expanded its prouct line. Same with, of all things, chips. Baked chips, for example, in sunflower oil is a better choice for some. 

The same with meats and poultry. You know times are changing when Halal prepared meats are available.

Two companies seem to be really driving into healthy choise market. Maple Leaf Foods and Schneiders. Scheiders with their Country Naturals and Maple Leaf with their 'Nothing but the good stuff.' line.

I've tried their chicken, sausages, cold cuts, hot dogs (no mechanically separated stuff), and for the first time I bought bacon yesterday.

Outstanding quality and taste.

People have no excuse anymore. The choice is available. If they still choose to buy the cheaper option, then that's their business and their business alone.

We have the power to change our habits but not everyone cares. That's freedom.

The beauty in all this is these companies weren't coerced into this action. With the government imposing itself more and more on food (and they will eventually begin to compel grocery stores to sell certain items I am sure), here's an example of two companies following market trends and capitalizing on it free of any Bloombergian Fascism.

2012-07-21

Northern Spy Food Co. Invitation Against Irrationalism

I can't make it but I'm there in spirit!

I don't think opponents of the idiotic soda ban will win as the fascists in Albany - armed with the usual specious facts - will likely win but it's worth fighting.

All I can do is offer support from afar. If there's one thing I've learned in two years in a heavily regulated industry is that it's all arbitrary with little empirical evidence to justify have the rules we're compelled to follow.

It's just the way of things.

The prevailing attitude is captured perfectly by this ridiculous comment by a professor:

"One commenter, Rowan University Prof. Lawrence Weisberg, MD, claims the positive impact the ban will have will far outweigh“trivial issues of personal freedom” the ban raises."

Unfortunately, this is the norm I'm afraid. People just don't give a shit.

"Others supporting the ban include filmmaker Spike Lee (who argues, among other things, that “[c]hildren today in public schools across the country are not being taught art”), author Eric Schlosser (“Soda isn't food.”), and Jamie Oliver (“[W]e are way past the point where can trust people to make better choices. We have to help them make better choices.”)."

What point? What's his point of reference? Where's the proof? In England where they can barely tell the difference between a zucchini and a cucumber?

Pathetic. Just plain pathetic. And you're worse than pathetic for buying into this emotional travesty of nonsense.


40% Of Americans Un-American?

If Obama's ideas are "un-American" why then do 40-44% of Americans approve or support him?

That would mean 40% (or thereabouts) of them are Un-American.

My Life

T.C. has a new writer contributing to this blog. My kid. Why not? This blog can use all the help it can get.

Without further ad-oooo, here's, Johnny:

Hi, my name is lauren and I am 7. i have a too-too named Doggy. Woof, woof my name is Doggy. My frinds Karina, Jessica, and Emma made a club named The Pencil Club. You know the man who writes all the other blogs that's my father and I'm his daughter and he makes breakfast bashes.

***

There you have it. Better than anything I pimp out.

2012-07-20

How Muslim Athletes Deal With Ramadan

Muslim athletes and Ramadan.

Nothing Like It In Canada

I'm always struck at the level of quality and standards in American hospitals. Let's call a spade a spade: We have nothing like the University Medical Center in New Jersey.

America is littered with world-reknowned hospitals from burn centers to the Mayo Clinic.

I know Americans are in the middle of debating their medical system. I just hope this edge they hold doesn't get compromised.

Losers

It's right there for you to see.

Every single time. It never fails.

Losers.

Let The Politicizing Begin

I don't get it at all.

This is getting too predictable. It didn't take very long for MSM to speculate without facts. It's the same routine over and over and over.

If the left holds such a hatred for Fox News dubbing it Faux News, what to make of "liberal-leaning" media outlets like New York Times and ABC News?

I simply don't see the point of trying to attach the Colorado Theater killer to the Tea Party. It feels that journalists want to believe so much that their suspicion of the Tea Party being filled with "budding mass killers" they abandon all integrity regarding a story.

I don't care Brian Ross "qualified" that it was fact that James Holmes was a member of the Tea Party. Why run with it before A FACT IS VERIFIED?

What the heck happened to journalism? Worse, Stephanopolous actually said Ross was "investigating" it.

Man, talk about second-rate hack jobs.

The media clearly has an agenda - remember Loughner? Remember how we were led to believe that he was a right-wing nut?

All they have is shit on their hands.

BUT.

If the suspected shooter is potentially a Muslim-jihadist WHOA! All of a sudden they revert back to journalistic integrity. It really isn't all that hard to notice this behavior anymore because it's so overt and lazy.

No wonder blogs are taking over more and more.

Who can possibly take these people seriously anymore?

***

Like Loughner, yawn, this guy is probably just another disturbed individual. There won't be no "Libertarian Manifesto."

***

Thoughts and prayers to those who perished so violently. It's terrible.

2012-07-19

Who Else Indeed, Mr. President?

I couldn't agree more with John Kass.

I really fail to see what Obama was trying to accomplish with this. It's as sickle and hammer a message as you'll get.

And no, the charge of "taken out of context" is not applicable because his speech was crystal clear.

Really, what was the point? What does he see in America society that compels him to engage in paternalistic gibberish?

***

My buddy brought up a good point and someone on the comments thread did as well. The Italian mafia used to say the exact same thing when they would extort and coerce money out of immigrants back in the day. It's the same rhetoric.

***

Immigrants came to North America because of opportunity. The system in place gave them a chance. I don't know ANYONE that argues against this. WE the people created the "system" and we can just as easliy take it back.

Still, I fail to see how this became an intellectual position to take among American and Canadian liberals.

It should be neutralized, and neutered into nothingness.

Immediately.

2012-07-18

HOlD oN tHeRE, kObE; French Sports Ministers Indignant

nOTHING Like pOsting while Unnnder the iNNFLUENCE of Gin. I thanks the DUTCH!!!

Ok.

Kobe Bryant thinks it's a stupid idea that Commissioner Stern suggested limiting future Olympic rosters to 23 years and under. Is it that stupid?

From what I saw, most mainstream American pundits agree with Kobe without really offering a reason other that it should be up to the players. If you ask me, and you should, I don't think it's that stupid. Why? A couple of reasons.

One, I don't believe professional athletes should be at the Olympics to begin with. Sure, it's incredibly entertaining, but the Oylmpics is not about pro sports; it's about AMATEURISM. Two, if you're going to permit pro athletes, I think soccer limits rosters to 23 years and under so it's not a far fetched an idea as Bryant may lead you to believe.

***

Only in France. For now.

Following PSG's signing of AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahovich, the usual silly bureaucratic mumbo-jumbo followed expressing outrage over the cost:

"French sports minister Valerie Fourneyron called the terms "astronomical" and "unreasonable," and added that the deal shows "the absence of all regulation," a criticism also voiced by the previous sports minister, Roselyne Bachelot."

Sigh. The concept of the free market is dead in France for real.

Don't laugh. I see this sort of logic used here as well.

As if it's the government's business to get involved in pro sports.

Hey, while we're at it, let's get all huffy about how much money celebrities make! Let's arbitrarily start with Adam Sandler!
Amazing.

2012-07-17

Queen Of Country Kitty Wells Dies

Wells is one of the most successful female country artists in history.

Mariano's Ambitious Return Plan And USA Basketball

Yankees closer Mariano Rivera tore his ACL knee ligament back in early May. He's hoping for a return to action in September. That's five months (and I'm being generous because it's more like four) after an injury that used to automatically keep you away for one full year at the minimum. I don't know of any new techniques that cut the rehab down so much. It's something I've been detecting among ACL injuries.

I don't get it.

***

Just a couple of games into the pre-Olympic session and people are wondering if there's concern with USA basketball after "just" an 11 point win over a very, very good Brazil team.

Slow. News. Day.

USA is far and beyond, up and above any other team - and there are some excellent teams of solid quality. Basketball is simply not like hockey or soccer or even baseball where several nations are capable of winning a tournament. In basketball, there's USA and everybody else. The gap may have narrowed since the 1992 Dream Team but not that much.

The Americans will bull doze the competition.

Speaking of the Dream Team. No Kobe, USA 2012 is not as good as the Dream Team and I doubt you actually believe that. Jordan, Bird, Johnson, Ewing, Robinson, Drexler, Barkley, Stockton, Malone, Mullins even Laettner.

Come on.

Romney Plays With Obama's Words

I don't get the need to pull a quote out of context to make a point.

For example. In my last post, I did the best I could in refuting Obama's "we're all in this together" philosophy. But I did so using his exact words.

I don't know why Romney couldn't do the same when he attacked Obama by saying:

"He said this: ‘If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen,’” Romney said, quoting Obama from a campaign stop in Virginia last week. “That somebody else is government in his view.”

Not quite.

What Obama said was:

Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that.
Seems to me this assertion on its own is enough to question. There's really no need to edit it for political purposes.

That "somebody" of course is you, the taxpayer. So it's circular logic employed by Obama. I think.

2012-07-16

You Can't Hold That

It's against the law to not just talk on the phone but to hold a cell phone in your hands while you drive.

So if a cop apots you with a hand held device he or she (or it) will pinch you.

BUT.

They'll leave you alone if you're holding bottled water.

Poland Likes Reagan

I guess the American left has no use for Poland now. Can we expect a rebirth of Polish jokes from the like of Maher?

Obama: You're Never Alone

America. This is your President.
I addressed this position here.

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me -- because they want to give something back.

Ok. Who are these people and what do they want to give "back?" For every person who agree with him, how many don't?

They know they didn’t -- look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. 

Obama has been attempting to change the ownership narrative for a while now and people are beginning to jump on this.

And I'm struck by people who actually say this. I don't see the connection between "doing it on your own" and someone believing they're so smart.

There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something -- there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. (Applause.)

And very lazy ones too.

Sure, there are plenty of hardworking people. It's just that some work even harder. They have more on the line. There's a huuugggge difference between a hard worker who risked their own capital and one who doesn't. To me, you know, this is kinda an important distinction to make.

Empty, platitudes start...here. If they didn't get there on their own, who was with them exactly? You? Did you carry the debt?

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help.

Yes. It's called family (and maybe friends). There certainly wasn't any government official that helped me. They preferred to throw "batons" in my wheels for the "greater good."

There was a great teacher somewhere in your life.

And? So what? A great teacher doesn't necessarily correlate to a person's success.

I appreciated them and they play a key role in our lives but they still don't share in anything. People who invest do.

My wife is a teacher and she sure as hell doesn't think she helped that millionaire become who they are. Most of the time, such people are predisposed and driven enough to accomplish great things regardless of state propagandic self-aggrandizement.

Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive.

Yes. They're called the American people.

Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that.

Unless you're in the business of...building bridges...of course. But in Obama's Fable, only the government builds.

Moreover, that I didn't build a bridge is because I'm not an engineer or construction worker. Whatever public works were initiated (usually sub-contracted to private companies), were paid for through tax dollars to which I contributed in the first place.

I go buy my fruit at the local market. I get it because of a farmer. I compensate him or her for that. End of story. Obama is stating obvious human economic interactions.

Then there's the whole if I had a choice where would I put my money? In Quebec, I wouldn't invest in the STM. But I have to through taxes. I pay for transit public workers who tell me off for speaking English. So I choose to not use Montreal's public system but I still have to pay the taxes to pay for their salaries.

Somebody else made that happen.

Who is this person he keeps alluding to?!

 The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.

Now the President is just being silly. Whoever wrote that line should be fired. Immediately.

The government (the military specifically) created the internet for companies to make money off it.

At this point, Obama is just being obtuse and annoying.

The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.

Really? He believes that? He believes people would be Keystone Kops? Citation. Please.

It's astonishing. Lemme get this straight. If there's no state action we're aimless and disorganized?

So we say to ourselves, ever since the founding of this country, you know what, there are some things we do better together. That’s how we funded the GI Bill. That’s how we created the middle class. That’s how we built the Golden Gate Bridge or the Hoover Dam. That’s how we invented the Internet. That’s how we sent a man to the moon. We rise or fall together as one nation and as one people, and that’s the reason I’m running for President -- because I still believe in that idea. You’re not on your own, we’re in this together.

Read: The government is a warm gun.

This narrative of "we're in this together (by force of course) is curious. I've been hearing it on Canadian airwaves for some time now. One lady - a socialist - repeats this often as a panelist on a radio show.

Anyway, the founding of the nation was rooted in the power of the sovereign self with a focus on limited government all under a supreme God.

Obama asserts the GOP believe wealth is created from the top down. Perhaps. But his position is no better. He stakes the claim it all begins with the government and that it's the government who can best regulate and distribute the resulting success.

He's entitled to his opinion. Just don't tell me we're in this together since I know you'll come after me to redistribute things according to your ideological calculation.

2012-07-15

History Of Bleeding Kansas And Arkansas: Jayhawkers And Bushwhackers

The Kansas Jayhawks are of course one of the powerhouse college basketball programs. But what the heck is a Jayhawk?

I believe it's rooted in the term 'Jayhawker.'

More on Jayhawkers and Bushwhackers here:

“...Jayhawker” originated in Kansas, and according to some authorities, it came into use in the late 1840s. The name was inspired primarily by the predatory habits of the hawk, but it implied, too, the noisy, mischievous nature of the jay. The combination became the “jayhawk,” a bird unknown to ornithology. The name was widely accepted in Kansas by the late 1850s, when anti-slavery advocates intent on defending Kansas Territory against pro-slavery “border ruffians” from Missouri adopted it. Kansans liked the tough image it conveyed during those bloody days of pre-Civil War violence, and they continued to use it once the war began. Missourians applied the name to Kansans, too, but negatively. They thought it fit the destructive raiders who plundered and destroyed their property before and during the war."

"...The origins of “bushwhacker” also date to the late 1840s, when Washington Irving, the New York author, referred to “gallant bush-whackers and hunters of raccoons” in a story for Knickerbocker Magazine. Essentially, bushwhackers were woodsmen who knew how to fend for themselves in rugged terrain. The name was affixed to guerrillas who struck from ambush during the Civil War. It often implied a lone killer who prowled the hills, swamps, or forests and struck without warning, but it applied equally to whole gangs. Whatever the numbers involved, their slinking style put bushwhackers on the fringes of outlawry. They were deemed too cowardly to fight in open combat, and they drew no line between combatants and noncombatants. As with jayhawker, the word could also be used as a verb..."

I think I'm going to term myself a Jaywhacker or Bushhawker.

Worst History Books?

George Mason University asks "What is the least credible history book in print?" by way of Christopher Moore's history site (link in box).

I have not read any - and don't intend to - although I did read large snippets of Zinn. I could never really get over it for some reason.

However, the one about the Chinese discovering America, if I were to guess a choice, strikes me as ridiculous. There simply isn't any proof of this happening. It's pure speculation. History is filled with speculative readings and writings I'm afraid.

Do any of you have a book you'd add to the list?

Hey!

There world can handle ONE 'Commentator' and that's me, Bucko!

As for Noam Chomsky, I still can't believe people actually put weight in his political thoughts. Each time I listen or read Chomsky, the simplicity of his sophistry is blatantly apparent.

I don't get what people see in the guy.

2012-07-12

Bethune, China And The Conservatives

Interesting.

Not sure what to make of this.

Don't Attack Our Boy: NAACP

I don't know if this was by "design" as Pelosi claims, but the NAACP booing Mitt Romney was nevertheless rather unsporting.
I think the writer is on the mark here.

So much for civility.

A comment from the LA Times caught my eyes:

"Democrats have done such a good job of creating strong communities and a promising future for the black community -- how could they vote differently? Dependence on government has strengthened families, lowered crime, reduced poverty, and provided a model for the rest of the country. Go to Washington DC, Detroit, or Chicago and see the success of 40 years of liberal dominated politics. Without concern for Republicans thwarting their initiatives, the politicians who control the black community have created a near paradise. The community has been taught that class warfare, anti-business sentiment and more government will make things better. Given the obvious success of this strategy -- how could they open themselves up to other ideas?"




2012-07-11

The Commentator's New Goal

Life is all about settings targets and hitting them. Have an objective and meet it. So it is with this aimless blog.

Looking for an objective is tough. So I think I've found one. My goal is to simply outlast blogs that started around the same time I did. Even if it means posting about how to buy nail polish I'll do it.

I need a reason to live.

Tattoo You And Extra Help

My wife's cousin is an aspiring professional cake baker. Or is it cake maker? Whatever.

She was telling us how the store she works for - regarded as one of the best in the city - has a no tattoo policy. Or at least, a ban against visible tattoos.

As a business owner, I gotta say, I think that's a wise policy. Already I'm not that enamored with candidates that come in sporting tattoos and making it a point to show them whether they're behind their neck or lower back.

In this milieu I consider it best to be conservative.

That being said, I recognize having one doesn't and shouldn't detract from whether someone get do the job. I don't care or judge that people get tattoos - it's a fad even among my friends who are into their 40s now. All are professionals and having a tattoo doesn't equate to bad behavior.

However, in a work place environment I do feel it's one of the last places of decorum we should maintain.

***

Kids today are taught all things are relative. That they are unique and therefore all around them will appreciate this "reality."

Until they get into the real world...where bosses ask for more.

I can't take for granted that Gen Y or D or XYZ will do the extra things to earn them "points." Trust me, piece of advice, you want to get ahead?  Do something at work of value without being asked. THAT NEVER GOES UNNOTICED. I notice it ALL THE TIME. I bank that in the back of my head. A worker may not see immediate dividends but it will pay off.

Use this advice and watch your career move forward.



2012-07-10

More On California

I guess California isn't waiting for it to geographically break off from the continental USA. It's going to do it politically.

My Lord, what a queer jurisdiction California is. I don't know if it's worse than Massachusetts. Immigration will always be a part of North America.

I still don't see an important distinction that should be made: I have not read anywhere people are anti-immigration. What they are is anti-illegal immigration.

And really, if a sovereign state cannot enforce its own laws then it cedes its legitimacy to preserving the rule of law for its citizens.

Bill C-311 Scrapped

Sanity comes to Canada. Inter-provincial barriers are ridiculous. We sign a free-trade agreement with the U.S. and we can't even drink beer from Nova Scotia. Like I said, dumb.

With Bill C-311 gone, wine can freely move among the provinces now.

Wink to 'What Quebec Wants' blog. Link in tab.

2012-07-09

Universal Public Health Debate In The Internet Age

Watching the Obamacare debate down south makes me wonder what it could have been like if Canada had its debate on universal care during the internet age.

I doubt the full facts were ever disclosed when Canada decided to introduce and make mandatory public health. I still find it incredible that where people may have had a choice were weeded right out of the equation in search for an "egalitarian system."

I don't know if there was a vigorous debate since it happened decades ago. There are on-going debates for sure, but I want to know the origins and context that led to such a decision.

I've come across some periodicals that discussed it (physicians warning of out of control costs, shortages, rationing etc.) but never could find more detailed information. I would have to go dig up newspaper articles in library archives. Come to think of it, I'm somewhat curious enough to do that. I find it hard to believe it didn't have oppostion and if it did, were those apprehensions accurate or inaccurate?

I want to know what the conditions in Canada were like with a dispassionate, objective eye.

The Lethal Presidency

And his Nobel Peace Prize.

Bush or Obama or Romney. All expanded the power of the executive - and Americans have accepted it in exchange for security.

2012-07-08

Swimming To Survive Appeal To Emotion

Well, at least this:

"The decision comes as Quebec experiences a spike in drownings this year, that is prompting calls for mandatory water safety education for children.

"Swim to survive" will initially roll out on a voluntary basis at first, according to Education Minister Michelle Courchesne."

I appreciate the government offering it on a voluntary basis. This suggests to me they recognize the short comings of making it mandatory - for now.

It's especially appreciated considering the Liberals didn't campaign on this issue.

Personally, as important it is for kids to learn to swim, it usually has fallen under the family to take care of such things.

I also wonder about the relevance of this. Most of the deaths occur with kids under five years-old. It has more to do with lack of vigilance in terms of watching over children than anything. I'm not so sure you can fix this by legislation. Moreover, I'd like to see more statistics. The CBC's table is pathetic and incomplete. Numbers with no proper context.

For example, what's the ratio of deaths to the actual number of swimming pools in Quebec? To the size of the population? Yes, in brut numbers 80 kids in a season is a lot but we are 7.5 million people in the province.

I understand people will use the "at any cost for our kids" logic but I'm a citizen that's less inclined to be swayed by emotional tags like "swim to survive."

Then there's the whole "making arrangements" logistical problem. That's the first thing my wife - a school teacher - said. While it's good on one side, this means organized public outings and that's always a stress. Schools, who are already under duress with limited resources, will have to find time to fit this into an already packed curriculum.

Not to mention the possibility of taking the kids swimming in the dead of winter. That's a concern for some parents. I know it is for us.

We teach our child to swim. We take her to private lessons and we do it at our pace. More importantly, her pace. Forcing a person into the pool - no matter how important - is simply not a good idea. Millions of people don't know how to swim - and survive.

Once again, I fear emotions are getting the best of rational thought.

***

Heard a caller on the radio say on this subject "people forget that it's the government's job to regulate."

Of course, he didn't expand on what exactly he meant by this. It's their job to regulate what? Anything?

Where is the line drawn I wondered?

Gee. All this university education didn't once mention the notion that the stated purpose of a government is to regulate. To represent the people, uphold the rule of law, maintain law & order (by force), and preserve general peace and prosperity etc. I learned. But I don't recall any great political thinker suggesting an open-ended option to "regulate."

Then was the beaut I heard New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg pulled on Charlie Rose when he said, and I paraphrase, "of course it is the government's job to regulate health since we have access to better scientific research."

Bunch of paternalistic baloney.

Rather than entertain such gibberish I will just say that in my experience with the government regarding health and safety, they don't always have empirical evidence backing them up. A lot of it is plain made up out of thin air.

California Ponders Eminent Domain

It all comes down to this: Who compelled who to lend money to people who were not capable of covering a mortgage in the first place? Was it the government on the bank through various "everyone should own a home" initiative? If so, then invoking eminent domain is a bad idea. A repugnant one even. Or was it the banks on their own who chose to swindle people? Would banks be that cavalier?

California is a state that is essentially in default. Where is the money going to come from to purchase those assets (papers, notes) "under water?"

If enacted, watching the unintended consequences of this action will be interesting. 

They say there's child obesity in society today. There's also Bail-Out Obesity. There's always, it seems, someone or something being bailed-out. At some point, it has to end, no?

2012-07-06

Soccer Shoes: A Brief Memory

Back in my playing days I (well, my mother did) purchased a pair of soccer shoes. The Pantofola D'Oro brand remains the best soccer shoe I ever had. They were so comfortable I sometimes played without socks.

I loved those shoes. Enough to post about them 25 years later.

Piece of Baseball History

From Dodger Thoughts (for all things, you know, L.A. Dodgers).

Tommy Lasorda - who played for the Montreal Royals - fanning 25, while allowing 23 base runners. Now that's entertainment!

Love the archives.

'C' Is For Control

On seperate occasions, I heard two similar statements were made by two distinct individuals. One made by a caller on a talk show and the other a politician.

The caller proclaimed that people who resist the idea of the government teaching kids how to swim "forget the purpose of the government is to regulate."

Gee all that university "training" and that never came up.

The politician, in this case the poster-child for the nanny-state New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg who said on Charlie Rose (I paraphrase) that " the job of the government is to ensure the health of citizens because they have access to scientific research."

Whatever.

To me, it all amounts to less improving our lives and more controlling it.

Meh. Clearly I'm a minority on looking at things this way.

***

If people like Bloomberg had their way, they'd ban Cookie Monster for his role in childhood obestiy.
It's ok, CM, I got your back.


 

Where The Free Still Roam

I'm off to Northwest Kansas.

At least I'd like to.

I would too!

Olympian Pitstorius Deserves Attention

With the Olympics around the corner, those cheesey athlete profiles will be in overdrive. Saw one the other day about a Chinese table tennis player.

First of all, it's ping pong. I don't care what anyone says. And second, that ain't an Olympic sport. Yeah, it's cool to see their technique and speed, but really, that has little to do with athletics. Just like golf.

Do you believe?

No. I don't.

***

If there's one story that's worthy of attention it's South Africa track ahtlete Oscar Pistorius. Now that's interesting.

In The "I've Done Stupid Things Too" Category

Teenagers arrested for posting their 190 km/hr joyride.

Pft.

Been in a car that hit 223 km/hr (might have been 233 I think). Actually, went past that 190 figure a few times in my life. Even gone into the apex in a curve at speeds exceeding 100km/hr with a pro driver once. Crazy.

Plenty of people have done it. Motorcyclists in particular.

Yeah, I know...but what can you do?

2012-07-04

More On Detroit

Interesting politically incorrect black history of Detroit by one refreshing and honest Dr. Fleming.

It's fascinating actually how he describes the two, albeit different, waves of black immigration. I'm on record, as many others have also, as asserting men like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton plant the seeds of destruction and division. They're evil. How they're always hanging around to prey on a tragic event to further their own sad agendas.

This video traces back and explains how and why people like this exist in the black community. The "2nd wave" of black immigration as it were. He goes as far back as slavey and contends that the propensity for "natural" slaves to threaten to "burn down a plantation" as leverage to get more out of their masters. That thinking still prevails among the the blacks who have taken over Detroit.

Burning down a city that they didn't build comes natural to those who don't own anything. The productive and educated blacks who did build and own had long moved out of the city literally to avoid being murdered. It's a part of African-American history we're all not used to hearing about.

Dr. Fleming offers, if anything, an engaging journey into an oral account of what he believes to be the main source of Detroit's decadence. As for "the plan" he talks about. It's funny. I used to ask for a plan from separatists. I wanted to know exactly how they planned to secede from Canada.

None was forthcoming. I still haven't heard a viable plan and likely never will.

In any event, I wish him luck in ushering in a Detroit Renaissance.

Fall Of An American City

It's hard to fathom the fall and decay of a once mighty American city like Detroit. These photographs lend an idea. All that beautiful architecture. Dead. Likely never to return.

Is Detroit symbolic of what's in store for the future? Or is it unique?

I visited Detroit for a day in 1994. Went to see a World Cup match at the Silverdome. The place was pretty messed up. The city too.

How does the city continue support four major pro teams? It makes the Red Wings dynasty all the more remarkable.

Wednesday Night Canadiana

With The Guess Who!
Running back to Saskatoon has just gots to be one of the all-time good rock titles.

I would drop a penny to watch them live. Hands down. Their too classic to turn down.




What other band would find a way to fit Red Deer, Moose Jaw, Medicine Hat and Saskatoon in one cool song? Flin Flon didn't make the lyrics but that's ok. Hockey players factory places.

Moose Jaw saw a few, Moosomin too
Runnin' back to Saskatoon
Red Deer, Terrace and a Medicine Hat
Sing another prairie tune
Sing another prairie tune
I been hangin' around libraries
I been learnin' 'bout books
I been talkin' to playwriters
I been workin' on words, phrases



Italian Icon Pininfarina Dead

It's been a bad week for Italy, first an uncharacteristic loss to Spain in soccer and now the death of legendary - and I mean legendary - automobile designer Sergio Pininfarina. For those of you into cars, Pininfarina immediately invokes pure design genius. He is, of course, widely reknowned for his work with the iconic Ferrari - the greatest symbol of Italian engineering and design in the post-war era.

He indeed was a maestro (much like Zagato) giving his part to orchestrating Italy's economic and artistic spirit.

When my father purchased the 164 Alfa-Romeo it proudly came with the Pininfarina design logo.

Europe Discovers Subatomic Particle

The Higgs boson.

"We have reached a milestone in our understanding of nature," CERN director general Rolf Heuer told a gathering of scientists and the world's media near Geneva on Wednesday.

Happy 4th

of Jooo-lie!

Question

Do we treat the weak poorly?

How The Debt Crisis Works In Europe

A good, lucid explanation on how debt works. About 35 minutes.

Qualitative easing is absurd to the point of madness. It's pure money printing for its own sake.

Remember the Vietnam scene in The Deer Hunter?


2012-07-02

Quote-Comment

"University degrees are the new DEC's."

Me, 2012.

Spotlight Movie

Horror Express (Spain). Film review here.

A thawing ape that mauls people on a train by sucking their brains through their eyeballs?

I'm in.

How the SCOTUS ruling on Obamacare may impact Canada

Specifically the part where the justices ruled against the Federal government with regards to the States. A lesson for Federal-Provincial relations regarding health?

Boston Sports Writer Bob Ryan Is So 2010

PTI Guest host Bob Ryan chimed in on Spain's Euro 2012 victory over Italy:

"Spain did it without their two best players."

Referring to Villa and Puyol. I don't know who's feeding him information (probably the gosh awful, frighteningly poor Alexi Lalas) but that person is stuck in 2010. Spain's best players were in the line-up - Andres Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez. While Puyol was a staple on the Spanish defense he was replaced quite ably by Ramos and Pique in the back line. Keeper Casillas is another player that ranks ahead of Puyol and Villa.

Obviously, Ryan is not that into soccer. I don't think ESPN guys are in a position to determine whether Spain is the greatest team ever. Me? What do I think? Nice of you to ask.

Not that I'm into comparing teams of other eras, I would say they do merit being in the discussion but I don't think they're the best ever. Brazil 62-1970, Hungary c. 1950-57 and a couple of other teams were dominant longer. Spain is impressive no doubt about it, but win back to back World Cups and then let's see. As for their style, Argentina and Brazil have played this way for decades so I'm not sure Spain is reinventing the wheel here.

Where Spain is unique, I feel anyway, is its relentless "forecheck" as it's called in hockey, that is, their strong pursuit of the ball and are in excellent physical condition with a very good defense.

The defense was so good it beat the record for not conceding a goal last held by Italy back in 1980.

And of course, a fluid midfield led by the likes of Iniesta, Silva, Busquets, and Xavi.

Mr. Ryan, you can reach me at 555-...

***

Spain's 4-0 drubbing of Italy was the country's first win over the Azzurri in regular time in a competitive game since...1920 back at the Olympics.

That's, like, a long time.

Well worth the wait I reckon.

***

As for the Azzurri, them goes the breaks. It was weird Prandelli would start an injured Chiellini over Balzaretti who had a great game against Germany. As if that wasn't bad enough, he opted to substitute Montolivo for another player battling an injury in Thiago Motta. Nocerino would have been a better (scoring threat) option I suppose. Motta sealed Italy's fate after leaving in the 60th minute. By that time, coach Prandelli had used up all his options (Di Natale came in for another less than fit player in Cassano) and Italy was forced to play the last 30 minutes a man down.

With Bonucci also struggling with an injury, the Spanish looked to build on their 2-0. The scoreline was a tad misleading given all I described up here. Up until the 60th, Italy was hanging in but after that point, simply fell apart.

I'm not necessarily a fan of "sending a message" in sports but sometimes it's called for. After Fernando Torres scored the third goal, and with the game out of reach, and Italy laboring, Spain looked to pile on. As is the case in football or hockey, some guys don't like that and react in kind.

I was surprised the Italian defense didn't crack some slide tackles to make the Spanish second guess coming into the box. Instead, it was open season.

It's a shame really. Italy wasn't expected to go far in this tournament and managed to reach the finals. They clearly weren't ready for prime time but losing in this manner to a superior team was unfortunate.

2012-07-01

What's Going On At The New York Times?

And Fox is Faux?

Happy Canada Day

Or as it's known in the more hardcore parts of the country: Dominion Day.

Nice blog post here.

For you Americans especially.

***

Unfortunately, this is something that happens all too often: Sorry this video is not available in Canada (to go along with "Contest not open to Quebec residents). It's outrageous that someone in this day and age can block something for others. I feel East Germans sometimes in this country.



Nonetheless, if you're lucky enough to watch this episode from South Park about the Canadian Royal Wedding it's worth it. Hilarious.

Ike joins the Canadian army to save the princess. Beaut.