Tiananmen Square

Reason Morning Links: China's Economy Now Larger Than Japan's, the Border Crime Myth, Grim Month in Afghanistan



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  1. Hank Paulson: Housing policy must be set on sustainable basis
    …A significant root cause of the crisis was the combined weight of government policies promoting homeownership; these are apparent in the housing GSEs, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Federal Home Loan Banks, the federal tax deduction for mortgage interest and various state programs. Homeownership was overstimulated to the point that it was unsustainable and dangerous to the broader economy.

    The GSEs, now placed in conservatorship, and the FHA still provide a massive subsidy to our housing market, touching more than nine out of 10 new mortgages. …

    Dee Snider on The Wendy Williams Show (on Al and Tipper)

    1. But… But… TEH DIGNITY! Unemployment and impoverization apparently have no negative effects on dignity though.

  2. World population expected to hit 7 billion next year.

    Still #1 in the solar system! WOO!

    1. And of course the Times frames it all as just terrible terrible news.

      1. I saw an old movie in school predicting the population would collapse through starvation, but the prediction was a way lower number. Sad how nature does not follow the narrative of the “smart” people. Nature doesn’t even have a PhD!

        1. The Population Bomb Dud

          1. I think it was a movie that referenced Population Bomb, still can’t remember the title but I do remember PB.

        2. Neo-Malthusianism was big in the ’60s and ’70s. It comes back around every so often. Eventually — about the time they destroy the chemical fertilizer industry — they’ll be right.

          1. In some places, at least, you can obtain high yields with organic methods at a significant additional cost in moderately skilled (and uncomfortable and (in for instance Kansas) HOT) labor.

            Which is fine if you’re doing it out of love or some kind of “vocation”, or to prove a point, or ’cause corn syrup is evil, or with hopes of leading the way to a bright new future. But not so good for if imposed by governmental dictate.

            I mean we have lots of people employed in “unnecessary” positions, but they probably don’t want to take up farming, ‘ya know.

            On top of which those “unnecessary” jobs contribute the the social and economic fabric that we know and…well, know…in ways that Joe. Q Bureaucrat simply isn’t in a position to understand. Except for Congress of course–we can afford to pack them off to the fields.

            /Getting lots of winter squash from our allotment this year, but the tomatoes and chilies are struggling. Damnifiknow why.

      2. My junior high school science teacher assured the class that the world would end at 3 billion. Mass starvation. Plagues. Raining frogs. Oops.

        1. My junior high school science teacher assured us that we would live underground and have to survive off of canned dog food and sister rape because of the aliens drinking the ozone. He wasn’t there the next day. We were all kind of sad. Especially those that had their eyes on their sisters for a few years.

          Did they really expect us to believe the lock on the bathroom door broke all by itself?

          1. Even in KY, sister rape is crazy-talk, eh? Cousins, now, that’s just a cultural institution.

            1. No one has to rape their cousins in Kentucky.

              1. Good point.

          2. Reminds me of the cheesy early 1970’s movie “A Boy and His Dog.”

            1. “Well, at least you could say she had good taste.”

              1. + 1 billion

          3. Did he get promoted to school district science administrator?

          4. What about the zombies? Wouldn’t they be a leading indicator?

        2. I had the same one in Virginia. Wow, that was almost 20 years ago.

    2. Still #1 in the solar system! WOO!

      Been having these delusions for long?

      1. Bug, stay out of my kitchen or you shall inhale my wrath.

  3. Does that $1.7B include tax revenues?

    1. Does that $1.7B include tax revenues pulling numbers out of their butthole?

      Yes. Yes, it does.

  4. Randy’s linking to a Time/CNN story which in turn cites FBI data to support the narrative that life along the border with Mexico is among the safest areas in the country is not what one would call a committment to journalistic excellence.

    1. No,

      It’s what one would call the Reason Morning Links.

      And who is this “Randy” person?

      1. He’s Radley’s evil half-brother.

        1. Excellent. Evil twin would do too.

          1. How about evil half-twin?

            1. That could be, if his mom had two uteruses.

              1. So she gets to go through the fun you described on the “Chained childbirth” post twice?

                I have to imagine at least one of those will be Caesarian. I sure hope so.

              2. s/b “twice within 3 or 4 months…”

              3. How fun it must be to have two periods every month.

                I’ve seen pictures of the double vagina before. Frankly, I thought it looked kind of fun. But the relationship would never last… there’s no way I could keep from bragging about getting with a mutant girl.

                1. I’ve seen pictures of a woman with three tits.

        2. Maybe he’s Radley’s half-evil brother.

          1. Sounds like a tacofucker to me.

            1. Maybe you’re the tacofucker. What better way to throw suspicion off of your own taco fuckery than to accuse someone else?

              1. Look, you AIDS-dripping vermin, keep you and your thieving chalupa babies away from my country. Don’t touch my country. I said, DON’T TOUCH MY COUNTRY!

                1. Show us on the Rand McNally map where the tacofucker touched your country, RC…

                  1. Technically, the Rio Grande is America’s taint.

                    1. If one were to give this blog an enema, one would stick the catherter in a SugareFree post…

                    2. And I mean that in the best possible way.

                    3. i always thought America’s taint was Bayonne

                    4. If America’s wang is Florida (yes, I know they prefer to be called The Sunshine State,) then The Gulf is our missing balls, The Rio Grande is our taint, and Los Angeles is our asshole.

                    5. Rejoice, the Gulf has Tar Balls now.

                    6. If you go with the “if America’s wang is Florida” picture, then the Florida Keys are the last drops of piss being shaken off.

                    7. Bayonne is New Jersey’s armpit. Guess what that makes Camden.

              2. I don’t believe my opponent has ever fucked a taco. I just want him to have to deny it.

              3. Every last one of you are tea-fucking rat-baggers.

                1. TACO-fucking rat-bagger, tyvm.

                  1. You’re all a bunch of burrito fellators. You hear me!

            2. Wow you manhattanite douches really are out of touch.

              Taco is slang of pussy

              So you’re all taco fuckers, unless you cosmopolitan metro-sexuals have finished your metamorphasis.

              Then again, that would explain a lot.

              1. In one of Yasojiro Ozu’s movies, he has a woman’s boss ask her if she liked spring rolls. She replied no, and so he said “yes, I thought you would like clams instead”. I can’t imagine an American movie of the 1950’s trying that kind of double-entendre.

                The additional irony was that the actress (Setsuko Hara) was rumored to be a lesbian in real life.

                1. It took until 1960 for Spartacus, and slightly later for Lolita. I really love the amount of sexual deviancy portrayed in Lolita.

                2. It was the ’80s, but in an episode of Hill Street Blues, a character referred to one woman as “distempered tuna.” I nearly fell out of my chair. I still can’t believe they got that one by broadcast standards.

                  1. I remember an episode where one of the detective’s brother-in-law got busted in a prostitution sting. The detective askes, What did he ask for?” The reply? “Hot chocolate and whipped cream”. The detective says, “Book him.”

                    I saw that with my mom. Eeeeeww.

      2. Since when is citation to us government sources as support for one’s narrative consistent with the search for truth?

        1. Okay. What source would you like to use for historical violent crime statistics in US border states/cities?

          1. Ture Detective

            1. DOH! Also, “True Detective”

          2. Kilroy, don’t you know that vaccines don’t work either? Libertymike told me. If the govt says one thing then the opposite must be true, always. It’s why I freed myself from the dogma’s of gravity and radioactivity.

            1. Damn. I missed that. Suddenly I don’t feel well.

              I should sign up for his newsletter.

          3. If one aspires to be an intellectually honest, rugged individual upon whom other friends of liberty can depend for truth, one must recognize that data released by the state is unreliable-that is a fact of life.

            The state, including the united socialist states of amerika, has a history of prevaricating and skewing numbers. Thus, an intellectually honest individual should start from the premise that “statistics” released by the state are to be taken with a grain of salt.

            1. Okay, but is there any other source for crime statistic?

            2. What source was that again? I didn’t see a reference in your reply.

              IMO, if the US in general or FBI in particular were going to cook these numbers, they’d likely make the numbers worse. I would imagine they favor more police/military/federal agents along the border (and everywhere else).

              Don’t get me wrong, the government and the police state in the US is fucked up but I can’t see a logical motive for them skewing the border crime statistics to be lower.

              1. I can’t see a logical motive for them skewing the border crime statistics to be lower.

                You have to think like a conspiracy theorist: They want more illegal Latin immigrants because they vote for Democrats.

                1. You have to think like a conspiracy theorist: They want more illegal Latin immigrants because they vote for Democrats.

                  So do dead people, so do they want… oh wait, nevermind.

                2. Illegal immigrants can vote? That’s odd because even legal immigrants can’t vote.

                  1. They all will soon enough…

                  2. Illegal immigrants can vote?

                    Geez, Mo, how out of touch can you get? Of course illegal immigrants can vote.

                    You’re right, though, the legal ones can’t vote, they just get thousands of dollars every month in payments from the government.

                    Doesn’t everybody know that minorities and immigrants get more welfare than white Americans?

              2. I can’t see a logical motive for them skewing the border crime statistics to be lower.

                Because “diversity” is now a de facto religion, and elites of the left and right have decided that the US will become a multicultural country, not in the traditional “glorious stew” sense, but in the Yugoslavia / Quebec / Belgium sense. And crime committed by illegals runs counter to the narrative and is deeply un-PC.

            3. OK, Occam’s Razor time. Libertymike, what incentive does the “State” have to lie about crime statistics being lower than expected? Higher crime statistics, especially on border regions, justifies more police (FBI) and paramilitary-esque (ICE, BP, BATFE)agents. Lower crime means less agents, and therefore a smaller bureaucracy.

              So, why is the State not constantly ringing alarm bells in this manner? Could it be that they are being *gasp* honest?

              1. Damn you kilroy, and your quick fingers and nimble brain!

                1. My overarching point is that one cannot take data released by the state as the truth. As a general proposition, one would be a fool to take what a government agency releases, on its face, as the truth.

                  For example, take the unemployment numbers. Does anybody here really believe that the actual percentage of umemployed is what the Labor Dept. says it is on the first Friday of the month? Of course not. One of the reasons one does not, aside from malevolent motivations, is that the methodologies used are a joke.

                  One might argue that the state has a motivation to skewer the numbers to reflect a lessening in umemployment so as to justify its current economic policies. OTOH, one could argue that the state has a motivation to skewer the numbers to reflect an increase in unemployment in order to justify more “job creation” programs.

                  Thus, when it comes to releasing crime statistics and whether the same are to be taken seriously and as reliable, one must examine both the methodology employed in producing the data and the motivation of the state, and its factotums, to massage the data.

                  Applying the aforementioned principles to the present case, one should examine just what it is that is being reported. According to the linked story, the FBI says that, for cities of 500,000 or more, the 4 cities with the lowest violent crime rates are san Diego, Phoenix, El Paso and Austin. Assuming that data is true, can one then leap to the conclusion that “crime is down across the southwest” or “crime is down across the ENTIRETY OF THE US MEXICAN BORDER”?

                  The linked story asserts that violent crime is defined as “murder, rape, assault and robbery.” Who in their right mind would limit the definition of violent crime to such a definition? Note that attempted murder is not part of the definition. Ditto for breaking and entering. Ditto for arson, vandalism and kidnapping. Thus, the definition of violent crime is skewered.

                  As for motivation for skewering the numbers to reflect a downward trend of crime along the mexican-us border? How about making government BIGGER? More pressure to provide more welfare, including more Obamacare?

                  Thus, the argument, advanced by Kilroy, that the ONLY motiviation for the state would be to skewer the numbers upward is not in line with reality.

                  1. When one skewers the numbers, does one then grill the numbers to make them delicious?

                    1. no – you have to marinate the numbers. In LM’s case, he marinates in Crazy Sauce.

                    2. I see TAO has no interest in examining the recipe.

                    3. No – brining is the way to go.

                  2. “”As a general proposition, one would be a fool to take what a government agency releases, on its face, as the truth.”””

                    It would be foolish to take what you say as truth too.

                    Government without people is nothing. So it boils down to people that want to bullshit people. I think it’s good to have a healthy skeptisim of people in general.

                    1. The difference is that I am not a rent seeking parasite seeking to take your stuff.

                      As a general proposition, those who seek to take your stuff are less credible than those who do not seek to take your stuff.

                    2. “”The difference is that I am not a rent seeking parasite seeking to take your stuff.””


                      Is that your standard when seeking truth?

                    3. Its a pretty good guidepost. Ceteris paribus, I would tend to trust the word of one who does not want to take my stuff than the word of one who does.

                  3. So basically you’re saying that you have no idea whatsoever if the numbers are right or wrong. You have no information to refute or even taint (Rio Grande?) the credulous status of these figures other than your overblown paranoia.

                    I’ll be happy to concede that the government is full of shit a lot of the time, perhaps most of the time, but if you can’t offer any evidence whatsoever to condemn these numbers you shouldn’t be questioning another’s integrity on that basis.

                    Also, IMO means In My Opinion and I can’t see a logical motive also denotes personal opinion. I didn’t represent that I know all the motivations of the state.

                    In short, put up or STFU.

                  4. Shorter post, LM: Government lies like a sumbitch. Don’t trust their numbers.


                2. If the goal of the day is to show that they are doing something about border crime then it fits. They do it all the time with crude inventories, unemployment, crop progress, etc.

              2. Actually, lower crime statistics mean that the laws are working, and we can’t stop now, not when we’re so close to victory! See: War on Drugs

        2. So you’re also not buying the 3 million jobs “created/saved”…?

  5. July deadliest month in nine-year war in Afghanistan.

    They don’t like us yet? Better send them all an email about our new mongrel in chief’s re-purposing of NASA just for them.

    U.S.-Mexican border still among safest places in the country.

    Amazing what an injunction and a little creative reporting can do.

    1. I hear that sharing a bowl of opium is an excellent icebreaker – perhaps we should try it with the Afghanis.

      1. I thought they made that stuff just for us and prohibited their own from using it? It must be true, I read it from a reporter, not a government report.

        1. For a place where the men use painted boys for their bachelor parties, you would think the army would use the opposite of “don’t ask, don’t tell” to get some of the bad guys to surrender to our crack and nicely-dressed-and-taking-decent-shape-of-their-body troops.

    2. We know where the troubled areas are. Tactical nukes are the way to go. Drop a couple and folks will say, “Oh that’s right. America will take a good deal of shit, but when they’ve finally had enough, someone’s gonna get fucked up bad.”

      1. The willingness to kill a lot of foreigners with nuclear weapons has been shown to be much higher in brains too unsophisticated to look at other options besides blowin’ stuff up. Try not to think about things like foreign policy and just focus on sports, where nuclear weapons are never an option. Good luck with your retardation and making it in a complex world.

    3. I think you meant to post that on the Stormfront comment boards.

      1. No. She got it right.

    4. “mongrel in chief…”

      Stay classy, White Pride Brother!

      1. Self-identified, asslick.

        1. Bolded with no link. Unsurprising. Asslick? Keep your fantasies to yourself, please.

          1. Suck Pip’s dick:

            The president appeared on ABC’s morning talk show “The View” Thursday, where he talked about the forced resignation of Agriculture Department official Shirley Sherrod, his experience with race and his roots.

            When asked about his background, which includes a black father and white mother, Obama said of African-Americans: “We are sort of a mongrel people.”

            “I mean we’re all kinds of mixed up,” Obama said. “That’s actually true of white people as well, but we just know more about it.”


    5. Ooh, Mo’s was better.

  6. U.S.-Mexican border still among safest places in the country.

    Bite me.

    1. (Ssshhh!)

  7. U.S.-Mexican border still among safest places in the country.

    I didn’t RTFA, are they averaging in the totally uninhabited desert areas?

    1. No.

      According to the FBI, the four large U.S. cities (with populations of at least 500,000) with the lowest violent crime rates ? San Diego, Phoenix and the Texas cities of El Paso and Austin ? are all in border states.

      1. Austin is about two hundred miles away from the nearest part of the border. That’s like calling Las Vegas a border city.

      2. OK, I keep seeing Phoenix popping up in these conversations – just because a city is in a border state doesn’t make it near the border. The state is 400 miles north to south. Phoenix is 150 miles north of the border. May as well say Flagstaff is on the border.

        1. The article also cited Nogales.

  8. Where’s the Friday Funnies?
    It is Friday, right?

    1. You don’t find this funny?

    2. Why on earth would you request it?

  9. But in the really important news, CNN has devoted Friday and presumably the whole weekend to Chelsea’s Big Wedding.

    1. Chelsea who?

      1. Webb Hubbell’s daughter.

        1. Too bad I don’t know who Webb Hubbell is either.

          1. You don’t get out much, do you.

            1. You’re the only sunshine I’ve seen in months.

        2. + 1 bastard child.

          1. CNN is calling it “America’s Royal Wedding.”
            I’m going to be sick now.

    2. HEY!!

    3. Chelsea Handler’s getting married?

      1. +1. Treat yourself to some Belvedere on my tab.

    4. Take a guess who’s not invited to the big wedding. Here’s a clue: he’s Hillary’s boss and his name rhymes with “yo mama”.

      They really love each other, don’t they?

      1. It is a no mongrels allowed wedding.

      2. “Yo Momma,


        Has that picket sign shown up at a tea party yet? Sounds like picket gold to me.

        1. His mom’s a cracker, so it’s not racist.

    5. Considering how ugly she was as a kid, I can understand the fanfare.

    6. Liberals:

      Rich people suck, but it’s okay for the Clintons to blow five million on their daughter’s wedding, and for John Kerry to blow millions on a foreign-made yacht.

      1. Since when does liberal mean rich people suck? The Kennedys were not poor.

      2. Liberal douche: “No, corporations suck. Rich politicians are awesome because they say they agree with me that corporations suck.”

    7. Free advice to Sarah Palin: Make your own daughter’s wedding to that dirtbag as frugal as possible, and claim that “us simple folk don’t spend the GDP of a small African nation on our spawn’s nuptials”.

      1. They can make it BYOBF (Bring Your Own Boone’s Farm).

    1. As always your links are like a gift; something that I wouldn’t go to myself, but feel compelled to after reading your enigmatic hyper-link.

      The reward; comedy gold.

      You’ll see through her clothes,
      but at the end of the day,
      it’ll just be you alone with your skeletal hand.

      #555 $1.50

      1. The guy who does the comics always has a few lines I’d kill to have made up. “He thinks a three-way is fucking a two-faced ape.” is one of them.

        1. Reading the Every Women’s Magazine Ever article, very funny.

          Men are stupid. My first husband thought there was a cigarette machine inside all women for 35 years. It’s what I told him to explain why my vagina ate money and spat smoke.

    2. With a guest appearance by Dick Whiskey, drunk cop.

    3. On his own site, the article Seanbaby did on panda porn is the definitive ethics guide for the 21st century.

    1. Krugmaneratu!

      1. Krugthlhu!

        1. Krugerdammerung!

          1. Krugerrandpaul!

          2. Krugmiglione!

            1. Krugmanati

              1. Man of Krug Mancha.

                1. Krugmasutra.

                    1. Krugantua and Bernankegruel

                    2. And let us not neglect the anagrams.

                      First, the ones for Krugman:

                      Nag Murk
                      Mark Gnu
                      Mark Gun
                      Rank Gum
                      Rank Mug
                      Nark Gum
                      Nark Mug
                      Arm Gunk
                      Ram Gunk
                      Mar Gunk

                      Next, a sample for Paul Krugman

                      Karma Unplug
                      Alarm Gunk Up
                      Anal Pug Murk

                      I favor Rank Mug for vicious attacks on his person and Alarm Gunk Up for assaults on his opinions.

                    3. KrugManBearPig.

                  1. Krugmasturbate

            2. Krugmenstruation

              1. Krugaritaville.

                1. “Some people claim that there’s a woman to blame,
                  But we know… it’s his own damn fault.”

                  1. Don’t let the She-Krugman off the hook so easily.

                    1. Krugmanopause – when you lose the scales from your eyes and actually start to understand economics

                    2. Krugmanorrhea – the burning sensation you get after reading too many blog posts of a certain NY Times columnist.

  10. Friday Funnies: Imagination Edition

    First frame: the Obamas are flying AF1 low over NYC on their way to a champagne summit
    Second frame: Cash for Clunkers is happening
    Third frame: Robert Gibbs says something about bigger teleprompter screens
    Fourth frame: Rahm Emanuel is melting the Nobel medal to make more predator drones

    1. I can get behind this with one simple change:

      Make it 1 frame and have this frame be George Soros drawing the 4 you listed.

    2. +1 for “Cash for Clunkers is happening”

      I struggle to imagine how would get that information across visually in one panel and it’s funny to me.

  11. Police seize $1.7 billion in pot found in California mountains.

    Using their usual price estimating system, this must mean like four pounds.

    1. Hearing “mountains of California” and drug valuation, I can only think of Better Off Dead… “This is pure snow! Do you know what the street value of this is?!”

      1. From Tequila Sunrise

        “What street is that?”
        “You show me how to get there just once.”

      2. “somebody threw away a perfectly good white boy”

  12. Shat is getting confessions from mass murderers. George Takei needs to step up his game. I suggest he start reality show where he hunts down mass murderers and interviews them.

    Or he could interview Jimmy Carter.

    1. Takei needs to go on the Shat’s show. I mean, come on, it would be awesome.

      1. But, only if he brings a rapier with him.

        There can be only one.

    2. Red Onion State Prison?

  13. Is this through the looking glass or what ?

    From a Chinese official:

    “We must be modest and we still have to keep a low profile. If other people choose the yuan as a reserve currency, we won’t stop that as it is the demand of the market. However, we will not push hard to promote it,”

  14. China overtakes Japan, now world’s second-largest economy.

    Take heart, Japan. China’s economy is one gargantuan bubble. Once it pops, they’ll be where you were 2 decades ago. Then they get to go through 2 decades of Keynesian bullshit like you did!

    1. Re: Jordan,

      Then they get to go through 2 decades of Keynesian bullshit like you did!

      Or even worse, 50 years of Keynesian bullshit like the US did (and still does)!

      1. True. Really, I should have said 2 more decades. And still counting.

  15. Egyptian Journalist Describes ‘Absolute Prosperity’ in Gaza…


    1. That was a Vodka ad.

  16. It is a day etched firmly in the memories of Reasonoids – The Day They Stopped Posting Friday Funnies. As with the Kennedy assassination, everyone we spoke with remembers where they were and what they were doing that morning.

    “I was overcome with conflicting emotions…joy and happiness…at no longer having to experience the pain of Friday Funnies that weren’t, and forcing myself to say HAHAHAHAHAHA when I really didn’t mean it”, said sage.

    Warty reflected, “Bok and Payne – rot rest in hell, you autofelching humor vaccuums, have fun sucking troll balls with Steve Smith.”

    Suki offered that, “Friday Funnies were never the first thing posted – their lack of utility in allowing me to wish my colleagues at Reason ‘Good Morning’ contributes to my satisfaction with their demise. Plus, they weren’t funny.”

    The Gobbler offered succinctly, “Good bye, Shit Facktery!”

    July 30, 2010 – a treasured day in history, the day the humor was given its freedom.

    RIP Friday Funnies.

    1. They weren’t THAT funny to begin with. I found the FEE.org funnies to be funnier than Reason’s.

    2. You time traveled and took my post. I knew then, it would just be a few hours before I noticed there weren’t any FF yesterday 🙁

    3. Too funny! I’d kiss you on the lips. If you had lips.

  17. Reading further down in the $1.7 billion pot article:
    Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Gil Kerlikowske said “tremendous devastation” had been done by the industrial-sized fields.

    He said eradication teams removed thousands of pounds of toxic fertilizers and rubbish from the sites.

    That’s some beautific bureaucratic spin right there. “Devastation”, “Industrial-sized fields”, “toxic fertilizers” – the density of made up, bullshit terms is exceptional!

    Interpreting the spin: “we found a few acres of land that were cultivated like a normal farm and planted with marijuana.”

    Even scarier: when pot is legalized, this kind of devastation will be *legal*… The horror, the horror…..

    1. Still designing my “Go Monsanto” flag for the first day of legalization.

    2. Concur. All fertilizers are toxic by the ton, including animal shit. They just spun modern farming techniques like they were salting the earth. Its the perfect Gaia-worshipping-drug-warrior talking point. “We’ve got something for both types of Californian to hate.”

  18. “toxic fertilizers” is particullarly nice.

    Guess I’ve been devastating the hell outta my yard this summer, but the peppers are poppin out all over the place. DAMN YOU MIRACLE GROW! *tiny shaken fist*

    1. Doing my first round of hop harvesting this afternoon.

      This is my first year growing them, 3 plants, 2 are acting about like first year hops are supposed to, providing me with some, but fairly sparse (more coming later in the season though). The other plant has said “Screw it, Im flooding you with hops”.

  19. Wow, pretty scary stuff dude.


    1. Last time I was in Europe I stormed some French lady’s harry castle. I’m pretty sure moat water was infected with something, too.

  20. Does anyone else find measuring “economies” in total instead of per-capita to be complete BS?

    The average over a set of laws has some value, but the total has none.

    As guess it comes from a collectivist mindset, but I think of economies as being very individual.

    If all the African nations united into a loose confederation tomorrow, they would pass a lot of economies in total size, but so fucking what?

    1. It’s for the same reason why we have weight divisions in boxing. The small guy might be just as strong “per pound”, but that won’t help him as the big guy is beating him up.

  21. Does anyone else find measuring “economies” in total instead of per-capita to be complete BS?

    It’s better not to think of the kind of economic stats that make the news as information; most of them aren’t. Think of each one as a nudge.

    What does someone who tells you “China overtakes Japan” in some faulty measure want you to do? Don’t do it.

  22. Does anyone else find measuring “economies” in total instead of per-capita to be complete BS?

    Yes. However, a lot can get hidden in per-capita statistics, too. The per capita wealth of the UAE comes to mind.

    Incidentally, Japan and Cuba had the same per-capita GDP in 1959.

    1. However, a lot can get hidden in per-capita statistics, too. The per capita wealth of the UAE comes to mind.

      I agree. Im more interested in my GDP than the US average.

      But, the average does have some meaning, if my business primarily interacts within the US. Realistically, its mostly local, so the Louisville per capita GDP is more meaningful to me.

      1. The average has even more meaning if you can see the distribution. Also, the greater the population, the less likely aberrations will affect the information you’re trying to glean.

        Brunei, the UAE, Saudi Arabia all have massively distorted per-capita GDP because of their small populations. Nigeria’s & the Congo’s $300 / year gives you the right general idea, despite the immense mineral wealth of those countries.

        Not that I’m telling you anything you don’t know.

        1. And, per capita averages income over non-income producing children, so Utah would likely have a lower per capita than, say, Key West, since 6.0 kids versus 0.1 kids per family distorts the numbers.

          1. Is that a distortion? Yeah, a family of 8 doesnt have twice the costs of a family of 4, but its not far off. The big family is just being efficient, taking some advantage of economy of scale.

    2. Incidentally, Japan and Cuba had the same per-capita GDP in 1959.

      Angus Maddison disagrees – he had Japan at $3500 and Cuba at $2000. In 1951, they were both $2100 and change. Cuba peaked at $2400 in 1957.

      1. Japan was at $2800 from 39-43 then they fell thru the floor for some reason. Their economy bombed.

        1. I had nothing to do with that.

          1. The economy rebounded once you got there.

      2. Angus Maddison disagrees

        I got the numbers from an old World Almanac. I’m quoting from memory, so perhaps it was a couple years prior to the Cuban Revolution.

        1. The point is valid, regardless of what year in the 50s it was.

          1. I have the Maddison year 1-2008 GDP spreadsheet sitting on my PC looking for a use.

            Western Europe in Year 1 was richer than Niger today.

            1. One last thing from that data:

              The world 2008 per capita GDP was exceeded in the US in 1941.

  23. The new issue of Texas Monthly has a very interesting article on the border. Now, TM is pretty reliably lefty-liberal, but they were reporting

    (1) The drug gangs have been careful to keep their war on their side of the border, because they know Americans are heavily armed and batshit crazy.

    (2) The border communities are doing quite well, because of all the Mexicans (with money) fleeing Mexico, and all the new federales moving in to enforce border security.

    1. It’s our reputation for blowing shit up in spectacular ways that protects us. Kind of weird, when you think about it, because I don’t think most of us view ourselves that way.

      1. You can’t terrorize an armed community.

        1. “”You can’t terrorize an armed community.””

          If only. Maybe we wouldn’t have the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act.

      2. It’s our reputation for blowing shit up in spectacular ways that protects us.

        If you want peace, prepare for war. The drug gangs know the Americans are more than ready to throw down on the border. It would just be bad business to get into it with the Americans, so they don’t.

        Really, considering that they are depopulating parts of Mexico and have no qualms about attacking Mexican police and officials directly and in broad daylight, the discipline they have been able to enforce to keep it south of the Rio Grande has been impressive.

        1. In a way, it’s too bad the PRI lost the election. They were crooked as hell, and anti-market in a lot of ways, but their institutionalized graft at least kept the cartels in line and (apparently) kept a lot of people from dying.

    2. Don’t tell the Mexican drug gangs that the notion that all of us Americans are armed to the teeth is nothing but a journolistic myth.

      Most Americans today are unarmed and so passive that dangerous wild animals are now starting to show up again in heavily populated suburbs that they were driven out many years ago.

      1. I don’t know if it’s passivity. I think people are SO confident that they no longer view animals as dangerous.

        Bears walk in my neighborhood from time to time. If I ever seen one, I won’t say, “Git me gun, Junior!” I’ll say, “Oh shit where is the digital camera?”

        1. It’s not passivity, it’s legal strictures. Unless said critter is actively chewing on you or about to, you are enjoined by a host of laws against shooting it. These laws range from hunting laws to firearm discharge laws to endangered species laws. Pop a cap in a furry bastard in your backyard and you’d better have some scars to go with or you’ll get prosecuted.

          1. Those laws were written by morons just like Barack Obama who don’t know anything, and in many cases they should be ignored.

            Some of these wild animals are extremely dangerous to housepets and small children, and it’s very dangerous for the community if they’re so unafraid of people that they’re wandering in suburban back yards.

            If some dickhead wants to prosecute, you just say “my child was out there and I was protecting his life”. No jury is going to convict you for that.

        2. I think people are SO confident that they no longer view animals as dangerous.

          Littered campgrounds, folding chairs
          Feed Doritos to the bears
          Honey, quick, the polaroid…

    3. (1) The drug gangs have been careful to keep their war on their side of the border, because they know Americans Texans are heavily armed and batshit crazy.


      1. The reputation has been carefully cultivated and well earned.

      2. Not all of us are heavily armed, prolefeed, but batshit crazy is an undeniable fact of life down here.

        Remember the slogan? Texas: It’s like a whole other country. They weren’t lying.

        1. Mostly heavily armed and batshit crazy — feature or bug?

          1. Mostly a feature.

            It is a finely tuned kind of batshit crazy that (with the guns) has served them well for a long time.

            But when it manifest as a bug, it is a doozy. We’re talkin’ Mothra here.

  24. “Police seize $1.7 billion in pot found in California mountains. ”

    Just how big was that pot?

    1. Mebbe it’s the liquor talking, but I actually laughed at that.

    2. Me too.

  25. http://www.breitbart.tv/mexica…..-protests/

    In this video the news people refer to the Mexican flag, but they never even mention the other flag. That leftist Breitbart is a communist sympathizer.

    1. I don’t know if those protesters are trying to gain support for their cause or deliberately piss people off.

      If it’s the former, then waving giant Mexican and Che Guevara flags is a pretty stupid way to go about doing it.

      1. Large numbers of the protesters are leftists, or Mexicans who believe that the Southwest US is “theirs,” or both.

  26. Don’t tell the Mexican drug gangs that the notion that all of us Americans are armed to the teeth is nothing but a journolistic myth.

    I don’t think they’re worried about the citizenry. I think they’re worried about the swarms of heavily armed paramilitary police we have, not to mention the actual military backup that would materialize if the narcos tried to shoot back.

    1. There’s also probably a lingering fear that the U.S. will finish the job of annexing Mexico.

      1. What, in the U.S.?

  27. U.S.-Mexican border still among safest places in the country.

    That’s pretty dumb, even for TIME. Of course the cities are safe, it’s the relatively unpopulated areas (you know, where people could sneak in unseen) that are no-man’s-land.

    1. Another issue is that criminals coming over the border just don’t all stop the moment they hit US soil: they head for LA, SF, and other big cities with Hispanic gangs and sanctuary policies.

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