Reason Morning Links: From Cairo to Davos

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  1. New Hampshire reps propose approval voting

    As a chemical engineer, this makes my brain hurt: Helium disguised as hydrogen

    “A helium atom consists of a nucleus containing two positively charged protons and two neutrons, encircled by two orbiting electrons which carry a negative charge. A hydrogen atom has just one proton and one electron. Donald Fleming of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, and colleagues managed to disguise a helium atom as a hydrogen atom by replacing one of its orbiting electrons with a muon, which is far heavier than an electron.”

    1. The real question is whether or not you will still get a squeaky voice or just explode.

      1. Something similar happened to me. I realized the subterfuge when I reached between “her” legs.

        1. I believe you mean “centrifuge”.

        2. well in the last line of the article the researchers did describe these experiments as ‘very sexy chemistry’…

    2. By “disguise” do they mean it ends up with the same emission spectrum or just that the atomic mass becomes closer to that of He?

      Also, I always take issue with the idea of “orbiting” electrons. Why do we have to keep using 7th grade conventions when discussing chemistry? I guess the Bohr model is good enough for hydrogen, but there’s no reason high schoolers shouldn’t be able to learn basic quantum mechanics.

      I take that back; typical teachers and texts are a reason that high schoolers can’t learn QM, but not a good one. I just talked with my Mom (who’s) a teacher about this this weekend and she’s in agreement.

      1. Put that closing parenthesis wherever it makes sense. need more coffee.

      2. Just R’d TFA and it looks like the disguised He should have a very similar spectrum to regular H since the muon kicks one of He’s electrons. huh.

        1. Not only does the muon replace an electron, it “hides” a proton. I believe they are after reactive behavior. Other particles that would react with standard hydrogen should react to the muonated helium in the same way. This should allow scientists to tease out the effects of mass versus charge in reactions and energy release.

          So what are we going to call He(m)2O? Super heavy water?

          1. Yeah it says they were studying the effect of mass on reaction kinetics. Don’t know if they went as far as doing other tests on the “element.”

            I wonder if this stuff could be produced on a large enough scale in the future to use it to help push reactions toward favored products. Sort of an alternative form of catalysis where you slow down one reaction instead of speeding the other one up.

            1. Isn’t the lifetime for a muon incredibly short, around 2 microseconds or so for the longer lived ones? Clearly that’s long enough to look at its kinetics, and thereby prove a lot of QM-based physical chemistry, but I can’t imagine muonic matter’d have much economic utility.

              1. Yes, very short lifespans. I should have thought of that.

        2. Doesnt seem like very noble behavior.

          1. I see what you did here.

        3. Well, that’s what dark matter is then. Most of the H we see is really muon-enhanced He.

          One ticket to Sweden, please!

      3. I learned about orbitals in high school, and my first chemistry teacher was a moron.

        1. Echoing your sentiments, my 1980 high school chem teacher was a last minute replacement and had only had one chemistry class in her life. And a bit of a moron. And we covered orbitals and suborbitals. To death. We had to chart all of the orbitals for every element. That gets old fast. We couldn’t even use dittos for everything in the column that is identical. these are the things I hated about high school academics. She couldn’t have told you the first thing about what electron clouds really mean with respect to how electrons move between P suborbitals, but we covered it.

          1. My high schol chemistry teacher moonlighted as a bartender.

            And my calculus teacher ran a liquor stor on the side.

        2. My first chemistry teacher was a muon. Heavy. Dense.

      4. Also, I always take issue with the idea of “orbiting” electrons. Why do we have to keep using 7th grade conventions when discussing chemistry?

        If it’s good enough for Venus Flytrap, it’s good enough for our high school students.

    3. A move to range- or approval voting would be revolutionary in its impact.

      Unfortunately, the mere mention of the topic puts 95+% of Americans to sleep. (Scientific fact.)

      1. Notice the discussion difference in the links posted.

  2. Chinese claim to not only be building a space plane, but also a space carrier

    “Chinese military analysts clarify that a Space plane will definitely form the basis for a space combat platform. This space combat platform will be intended to attack targets on Earth or it could carry out counter-space combat missions. China is aggressively pursuing air-breathing hypersonic propulsion technologies, which will provide additional avenues to develop very rapid long-range ‘deep strike’ weapons.

    There are news stories about ;People’s Liberation Army Air craft carrier space program in 2000′ which claim that China is also building a Spacecraft Carrier.”

    Personally, I take this as a sign that Western sci-fi has completely penetrated the Great Wall. Baen should get some of these guys under contract.

    1. Don’t they know it’s already been done?

      http://yamato-movie.net/en/swf/index.swf

      1. Ooh! I used to love that show on TV. “Star Blazers” in the U.S.; “Yamato” in Japan.

        1. You say Yamato. I say Yamahto

          1. YaMAYto, YaMAHto, let’s call the whole fucking thing off.

          2. But it’s actually YAHmato.

      2. Yes, but the Japanese are faking it. Haven’t you seen the “Ladder to Heaven” episode of South Park?

      3. Hahaha it stars the lead singer for SMAP! There was a kid at the junior high school in Japan that I taught at who was obsessed with Yamato. Every writing assignment would work in Yamato either directly or in passing. Between him and the Laputa kid, grading became a lot less mundane.

  3. When Politico reporter Ken Vogel pointed out that Soros hosts similar “secret” confabs, CAP’s Fang responded on Twitter: “don’t you think there’s a very serious difference between donors who help the poor vs. donors who fund people to kill government, taxes on rich?”

    Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/…..z1CcUwmEPj

    IT is always okay when lefties do it.

    1. Jane Mayer wrote in the New Yorker magazine, for instance, that the Kochs’ anti-regulation, anti-bailout, low-tax agenda “dovetail[s] with the brothers’ corporate interest.” Of Soros, Mayer asserted flatly “none of his contributions are in the service of his own economic interests.”

      In other words, altruism and self-sacrifice are good; rational self-interest and making money are bad. Same old leftist song and dance.

      1. And of course Soros could never benefit from his agenda. Nope. It is impossible for anyone to game the government and regulatory system. Are these people that stupid or do they think we are? Or does it really matter?

        1. Some are honestly ignorant, others are hopelessly naive, many are hypocritical and malicious. It only matters if you think ideas matter.

      2. Not only what you said, but that last sentence is a bald-faced lie.

      3. People who dislike it say that Rand’s bad guys are 1D cardboard cut outs. Then reality keeps proving them wrong over and over again.

        Why do leftists steal their arguments directly from Rand?

        1. “it” was Atlas Shrugged at word 4. Not sure why I pronouned it.

          1. Rand’s bad guys are stylized representations of evil. At the time of publication they may have seemed a little over the top to some naive individuals. Today their real-life personifications in business and politics can be found doing and saying the same things as Rand’s “caricatures,” and nary anyone notices. Art has become reality.

        2. Weird, but true. I tell AS newbies to prepare to scream in recognition of the roman ? cl

      4. Of Soros, Mayer asserted flatly “none of his contributions are in the service of his own economic interests.”

        Spoken by somebody who probably doesn’t have a fucking clue what Soros’ interests are, or, if he did know, what would advance them.

        1. Me thinks the lady doth protest too much.

      5. “In other words, altruism and self-sacrifice are good; rational self-interest and making money are bad. Same old leftist song and dance.”

        Of course, trying to force OTHER PEOPLE to do something (or refrain from doing something) has nothing whatsoever to do with altruism and self-sacrifice.

    2. I’m pretty sure if their primary interest was helping the poor, they’d be doing charity work rather than political work. I don’t if Fang is that gullible, or just thinks other people are.

  4. EFF has uncovered widespread violations stemming from FBI intelligence investigations from 2001 – 2008. In a report released today, EFF documents alarming trends in the Bureau’s intelligence investigation practices, suggesting that FBI intelligence investigations have compromised the civil liberties of American citizens far more frequently, and to a greater extent, than was previously assumed.

    Fortunately all of these abuses ceased on 20 January, 2009.

    1. Actually, the investigation ended in 2008. Probably early in November.

  5. you guys are frickin nerds

    1. Yew shore do have a purty mouth…

  6. http://www.newsday.com/long-is…..-1.2645292

    Nearly half of Nassau County’s 2,400-member police force collected more than $150,000 last year, according to county records.

    1. They need that to cover their property tax. 😉

      The citizens of Nassau county don’t seem to care. Maybe they should pay cops what they pay their firefighters. The Nassau police is worth every penny of a firefighter’s pay.

      For those who don’t know, Nassau, and most of Long Island, uses volunteer firefighters.

  7. Daniel Domscheit-Berg plans to screw everyone equally. The Wikileaks vs. Openleaks rumble will be half the show-the founders, and former coworkers hate each other.

  8. Syria’s idiot son is apparently getting the message from the events in Egypt.

    “If you didn’t see the need of reform before what happened in Egypt and Tunisia, it’s too late to do any reform,” Mr. Assad said in Damascus, as Egyptian protesters swarmed the streets of Cairo pressing for the resignation of longtime President Hosni Mubarak.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/…..australian

    1. thanks for the tip john!

    2. His father certainly believed in reforming protesters. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hama_massacre

  9. Many believe it’s all part of an organized campaign by the regime to create lawlessness … in a last gasp attempt to maintain its grip on power.

    Is there no end to the paranoid rantings of the Teabaggers?

    1. I’m just dying with anticipation for Ron Bailey to post his favorite little chart in a few days so we can see what the so-called “global temperature anomaly” did in the month of January.

    1. So what you’re saying is that in practice, the US has the most progressive income tax scheme? I’m sure such a fact would be utterly lost on confiscationists.

      1. The beauty of it is that since the rich pay a majority of all taxes, anytime someone wants to cut taxes, it is, by its very nature, tax cuts for the rich.

        1. Yes but unfortunately you need a brain to understand that, which is why the media doesn’t understand. Unless they are shamelessly just trying to boost ratings, and why would they ever do that?

          1. There has been a lot of talk recently about the fact that revenue stays in the 15-19% of GDP range regardless of tweaks to tax policy. However, currently we are on the low side of that range.

            However, of those that want to raise taxes, they never point out that the primary reason we are on the low side was the creation of the 10% tax bracket.

            I dont know where the exact peak of the Laffer curve is, but it is possible that the group who went from 15%->10% as their marginal group are below it. Maybe even probable.

            And yet, their proposals never consist of reversing that change. If you wanted to boost revenue from 15% to 18% that would be the change to make. Not that I favor it.

    2. Not only that, but digging thru the actual report, while the US has one of the lowest rates of reducing income inequality thru transfer payments, we do it efficiently. The bang per buck of transfer payments is one of the highest.

      Ditto for efficiency of our taxation, although we are one of the leaders in reducing inequality thru taxation (hence the most progressive).

      So, as inefficient as the US government is, it is more efficient that most other western countries.

      1. “So, as inefficient as the US government is, it is more efficient that most other western countries.”

        Best mouse in a cat show.

    1. Why aren’t National Football League players protected by OSHA, by the way?

      Excellent.

      1. Because they’re not employees, and there is no OSHA standard for playing games.

        1. Did you RTFA?

          1. Did you RTFA?

            Wha? I thought that was against Reason commenting policy.

        2. Pro footballers == union labor.

  10. Wow, that actually makes a lot of sense dude.

    privacy-tools.au.tc

  11. This could be an interesting one to watch.

    Retired cop is in his house; sees a guy taking stuff out of his truck in the driveway and putting it into his (the guy’s) own truck. Cop leans out the window, points his gun at the guy and yells at the guy to stop. The guy jumps into the passenger side of his truck; the cop starts shooting at him. The guy later shows up at a hospital with a minor gunshot wound to the head.

    Virginia law does not allow the use of deadly force to protect property. You can use deadly force only to defend yourself against the threat of imminent serious physical injury or death.

    So any bets as to whether the cop will be charged?

    1. You can use deadly force only to defend yourself against the threat of imminent serious physical injury or death.

      I call bullshit.

      1. Um, wut?

        In Virginia, as in most states, you are not justified in using deadly force to protect property – only to defend life and limb.

        You come home and find someone in your shed stealing your lawnmower, you can wrestle with him, knock him down, take your lawnmower back, etc. But you can’t pull out your gun and start shooting at him.

        You come home and find a guy stealing your lawnmower and try to stop him and he pulls out a knife and charges you, slashing towards your face, then yeah, you can pull out your gun.

        This generally is the law in most states, or some variation of it.

        1. Ky is similar. If you catch a guy burgling inside your house though, he is fair game. Also, if sitting fire to your barn*.

          If he is running down your driveway with your tv, however, dont shoot him.

          *this is a recent change. Prior to the change, deadly force could only be applied to an arsonist if he was torching your domicile. Now any building on your property qualifies. But if he was burning your car, I think you are out of luck.

          1. But my car is my domicile.

          2. I think a couple of states have made the use of lethal force after a forcible entry reasonable as a matter of law. But even in those states, the justification is likely that you have reason to believe you and/or your family are in danger in such situations. You aren’t actually authorized to kill in defense of property so much as the circumstances warrant you assuming that the burglar is a present danger to life and limb.

            It’s a fact question elsewhere, but I doubt many juries look too hard when a burglar gets killed after breaking into an occupied home.

            1. Yes, that is the rationale in KY. Someone in your home is considered to be a threat to your life, without you having to figure out if they are actually a threat to your life.

              Which also explains the original arson law, the modified one is the only situation of defending property that justifies deadly force in KY, that I can think of.

            2. Have I mentioned I love Texas? You are justified in using deadly force to prevent imminent commission of arson, burglary, robbery, aggravated robbery. Or to prevent someone from fleeing after the commission of those offenses.

              So in Texas, this guy would get nol pros’d even if he wasn’t a cop.

            3. That is the law in GA–you can use deadly force to counter a “forcible home invasion” which would include a burglary. I agree that a person who would break into an occupied home by definition is prepared to use violence. I dont think a homeowner who shot an intruder in his home would be in trouble in this state.

        2. I think you need to read the name of the poster again.

          1. Ah.

        3. You come home and find someone in your shed stealing your lawnmower, you can wrestle with him…

          Once you wrestle with him and fear for your life, can you shoot him then?

          1. If there is a reasonable fear of imminent serious physical injury or death, quite likely yes. You can use force, but not deadly force, to protect your property. I bet there is a VA Supreme Court case on converting from a situation where you are justified in using force, but not deadly force, to one where you are justified in using deadly force – I would have to do a little research (which actually would be interesting, because the standards for legal self-defense is something I find interesting).

            I do know that if you initiate a fight, and then you start losing the fight and then pull your gun and shoot, you are not justified, even if you thought the guy was going to kick the crap out of you – because you started it. I don’t recall off the top of my head the specific language used, but there are a couple VA Supreme Court cases that explain the state’s law of self-defense, and basically you have to disengage and make it clear that you are done fighting and are no longer the aggressor. If the other guy keeps coming nevertheless, then you *might* be able to use self-defense as justification for deadly force. There is no duty to retreat, unless you were the initial aggressor.

            It is a question of fact as to whether you “reasonably” feared imminent serious physical injury or death, and whether you were in a position to be legally “justified” to use such force. You can’t pick a fight and then claim you were defending yourself from the guy you attacked when he fights back.

    1. Boo hoo.

    2. At the point when the marks get wise and say fuck it and stop paying their bills, we are all fucked.

    3. That has got to be the most boring story about anarchists that I have ever read. I mean a whole article about how these people can’t afford their golf course house and nary a trash can gets thrown through a Starbucks window, yawn.

      Seriously though, why do these people think that gated golf course communities are built if not to keep the riffraff like them out?

      1. Yeah but those people number in the millions. The whole economic system is based on the vast majority of people voluntarily paying their bills and not being crooks. If even a large minority of people decide to be crooks and game the system, the whole thing falls apart.

        1. Who will be the US’s Mohamed Bouazizi and set off the tax revolt?

        2. Breaching a contract on which you are losing money is not a crime, provided that you follow the contract’s provisions regarding remedies for breach. People who do this may be cold and calculating, but they are not crooks. Businesses (including mortgage banks) do it all the time.

          If I was 100K or more underwater, with no real hope of regaining that equity (and quite a few people are in that position, e.g. people in CA or AZ or NV who paid 500K for a cheaply built ranch house) I’d walk away in a heartbeat.

    4. G-R-E-T-Z-K-Y

  12. Important questions that need to be asked, Why are women’s breasts getting larger?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/fem…..turb-.html

    1. After all, women such as Terri do not appear to be ?carrying much excess fat ?elsewhere on their bodies. As Terri says: ‘The rest of my body is quite slim. Yet throughout my teens my boobs went up a couple of cup sizes every year.’

      Maybe rampant self-delusion makes your breasts bigger.

      1. The brunette in the picture doesn’t look fat. But her boobs are so unnaturally large, they make her unattractive. She should get a reduction. A good plastic surgeon could give her works of art.

        1. You can find her attractive if you like, but if she’s looking forward to an L-cup and her hips are proportional to her breasts (which is obvious even in angle-distorted picture they use) then she is not “slim” by any rational definition of the word.

          1. Look at her arms. If she were fat, her arms would be bigger. Yeah, she is not some size 0 anorexic, but I wouldn’t call her fat, especially if you did something about her boobs.

            1. Most of her arm is out of frame, and if she sucked her gut any harder, her lungs would pop.

              Once again, find whoever you wish attractive, but if they were trying to illustrate a slim girl with out-sized breasts as a estrogen-in-our-milk scare story, they got a 190 pounds of fail on their hands.

              1. Her boobs are at least 20 lbs too big. Take that away and she is 170. And I don’t think she is 190 to begin with. She is more like about five eight 170. Take away the boobs and she is five eight 150, which is not that big. You just think any women over a size 2 is fat. See the Toyota Mini Van chick thread for an example. Rachel Drummond is the actress. And she is listed at five eight 130 in IMB. Yet, she was called enormously fat on here.

                1. John,
                  That girl has shoulders like a linebacker, and her hips are well-proportioned to them. She may be cute, but she isn’t slim. Either that or she has a tiny head.

                  1. She is not fat either. You people act like she is Rosie O’Donnel or Oprah after a fried chicken binge with Stedmond.

            2. She’s pretty fucking big John. The camera angle they use is designed to de-emphasize it, but she’s a chunker. Give her a few more years of self-delusion about her body image and a kid or two and I’m sure she’ll be at full whale status.

              1. The camera generally adds weight. It is pretty much impossible to get it to make you look slimmer than you are.

                1. Wrong. Photographers have used camera angles, framing, lighting, and various other visual tricks to emphasize or de-emphasize their subjects since the dawn of photographic art. The “camera adds weight” is just some bullshit thing that fat people tell themselves to feel better.

              2. All I have to say about it is, “Brrrrrumsky”!

                1. Did someone call me?

        2. Re: John,

          The brunette in the picture doesn’t look fat. But her boobs are so unnaturally large, they make her unattractive. She should get a reduction. A good plastic surgeon could give her works of art.

          Speak for yourself. I think she’s gorgeous. I just would hate to see her again when she’s 40 and 400 pounds…

          1. I’m with you. The future doesn’t look good but the present looks great!

      2. She could spend a lot of time at Walmart – or whatever the British equivalent is. That will warp anyone’s body image.

      3. She’s fat, but her boobs are still way out of proportion for that level of fatness.

    2. Sometimes its better to just accept a good thing and not ask why.

  13. The last thing I have to say about Tiger Mothers I hope
    …And here the point has been made easier to make by the curious fact that Tiger Mom is a Yale Law School professor and as Professor Bainbridge has pointed out, it seems almost an epidemic among faculty parents in New Haven. My fear is that little tiger kittens are not being groomed to make things that you and I can buy if we feel like it. I’m afraid, call me paranoid if you like, that those little achievers will want to grow up to, well, rule. …

    …Then I worry that all this fierce intelligence, all this ambition, all this work are going toward the building of world in which my children will be mere, well, what do you call the people who support those who so intelligently manage things from on top. Not to mention the unbelievably well educated 35 year old who will tell me someday I didn’t score well enough in some algorithm I can’t even understand to get my arteries bypassed or my prostate cancer treated. …

    1. I liked that one. Amy Chua is a deeply silly women who has written a deeply silly book. The excerpts of the book I have read are (unintentionally hilarious). I love the part about how she wouldn’t let her daughters be anything but number one at whatever they did. I guess she is so blissfully un-self aware that it never occurred to her that only one kid in the class can be number one making such a dictate a little difficult for everyone to practice. The whole book is about her figuring out, after he one daughter finally rebels, that she can’t torture her kids to success. She apparently before that had the wisdom and empathy of a 12 year old.

      And I would love to know where the hell her husband was during all this. Is there a better example of the modern neutered male than the guy who lets his crazy bitch Chinese wife deny his daughters bathroom breaks during marathon piano practice?

      1. Re: John,

        Amy Chua is a deeply silly women [sic] who has written a deeply silly book. The excerpts of the book I have read are (unintentionally hilarious) [sic].

        John, let the morning coffee take effect first, man!

        1. The point still stands.

          1. Re: John,

            The point still stands.

            But it stands more beautifully after a few cuppas!

      2. And I would love to know where the hell her husband was during all this.

        He’s out banging his secretary.

        Wouldn’t you with a wife like that?

    2. Admiral Kirk, in my judgment, you simply have no alternative.

      1. KHAAAAAAAAN!

    3. From an Psychology Today article a few years ago:

      Plight of the Little Emperors

      The “glories” of Chinese parenting, in China:

      This culture of pressure and frustration has sparked a mental-health crisis for young Chinese. Many simmer in depression or unemployment, unwilling to take jobs they consider beneath them. Millions, afraid to face the real world, escape into video games, which the government considers a national epidemic. And a disturbing number decide to end it all; suicide is now China’s leading cause of death for those aged 20 to 35. “People in China?especially parents and college students?are suddenly becoming aware of huge depression and anxiety problems in young people,” says Yu Zeng, a 23-year-old from Sichuan province. “The media report on new campus suicides all the time.”

  14. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01……html?_r=1

    God look at that stupid face, I just want to punch it.

    1. I still think he looks like a paranoid schizophrenic.

      1. Yep, but photos just don’t do that notion justice. One needs to see video of those weird little beady lemur eyes darting about to be suitably creeped out by him.

        (Yes, I finally realized that it wasn’t just Amanpour that made me stop watching.)

  15. Take a breath, Johnny. Six is enough.

    1. Johnny’s clamoring for attention is only a problem if you click on the links.

      1. His links are usually pretty good. I don’t know why anyone would bitch.

        1. Because bitching about stuff that most people don’t even consider for a second has become a modern growth industry, and counts towards ‘jobs created or saved’ for political calculus.

          1. I only get to the morning threads early enough to bother posting a link about once a week nowadays, so I walk in w/ a bit of a backlog.

  16. CNBC girl reporter was just on, “LIve! from Egypt!” talking about how the country has fallen into chaos and anarchy, and armed groups of men protecting their homes and businesses is “what you get when there’s no army or police or rule of law.”

    We should never have overthrown Saddam, I guess. Come on, people, connect those dots!

    1. women love authoritah!

    2. How anyone can’t be excited for the people of Egypt is beyond me. So what if they have to resort to, Allah-forbid, taking care of themselves and each other.

      1. They’re afraid it will work. Then the Teabagging ratfuckers will be right about the 2nd Amendment. If they’re right about the 2nd Amendment, they might be right about other things, too. Like how worthless CNBC is.

  17. Egypt keeps quaking.

    The battle of Actium still hanging in the balance – can go either way.

    [Sorry, wrong AP cable… that one is a bit dated.]

  18. “I examined the contractor screening program and decided not to expand the program beyond the current 16 airports as I do not see any clear or substantial advantage to do so at this time,” [TSA chief John] Pistole said.


    I applaud this trend. It would be easier if, before attempting to do something, private enterprise were to first submit to the State how it would benefit citizens or, more importantly, government bureaucracy.

    WHAT’S IN IT FOR GOOD OL’ PISTOLE??? The TSA has to wet its beak, too, assholes.

    1. I do not see any clear or substantial advantage to do so at this time

      Tinhorn self-important aparatchicks always see threats to their petty empire building schemes as ‘lacking clear or substantial advantage’. Pistole likely walks around with a semi-permanent two inch priapism, dreaming of the power he can gain and control.

    2. And Tim said Anthem was “shady”.

  19. The ‘Rand on the Dole’ article raised alot of philisophical issues with libertarians but it is really just the preparation of the battlefield for the coming budget fights.

    See this post from a lefty alaskan:
    http://www.themudflats.net/201…..-ayn-rand/
    He connects crazy and hypocritical Ayn to Rep. Paul Ryan to Greespan. (bonus mention of ROADS!)

    All of this is to frame the coming budget debates as “the selfish/hypocritical/crazy people vs. the Good People.” This better than having a Randian “Looter and Parasites vs. Productive People” framing.

    At least if they are going to this much trouble to re-frame the debate, maybe they’ve realized that we’re “Out of Money.”

    1. They won’t realize that until inflation hits 1,000%.

  20. Billionaire-backed demonstrators protest the influence of billionaires.

    Must be part of those newly-found “market forces” that Balko suddenly became so fond of…

  21. A man with a checkered history is arrested for planning to blow up a Michigan mosque.

    “Loose ships sunk lips!”

    1. Loose lips have sunk many an Edmund Fitzgerald.

      1. Whoa now. That’s not how I see it.

  22. >>A program that allows airports to replace government screeners with private screeners is being brought to a standstill.
    TSA chief John Pistole said Friday he has decided not to expand the program…

    …he said, picking himself up after being trampled by airport administrators rushing to apply.

  23. A guaranteed hit to make all the do-gooder, do-only-what-I-allow types have a freakin cow. . .

    1. Geez, how long does it take to *completely* burn a human body? I mean, you don’t want any funky greasy bone shards ‘n stuff lying around the back yard, do ya?

    2. SLD…

      They make open-air cremation seem a lot more “sterile” than it is. It takes a body quite a while to burn to ashes, and you are going to see some nasty stuff during the whole process.

      And what do they do about the ashes?

    3. I’m having my friends put me in a johnboat with an outboard just strong enough to beat the currents, strap a couple blocks to me, and a scuttling charge with a timer. An hour after they set me heading over the horizon, I’m on the bottom. My loved ones can think of me every time they eat Gulf seafood.

      1. I have begged my children to float my body out into the Mississippi river. I can’t think of a better end than being catfish food.

        1. Precast bricks engraved with my name as memorial. The bricks have small indentations. My cremains mixed with glue fill the concavities. My friends through the bricks through the windows of the statehouse and city hall. My estate pays for a fund to bail them out.

            1. This is better. When my estate can afford to fund that kind of bail, I’m upgrading.

      2. As an old car guy, I’ve told my wife to cut me up for spare parts.

    4. I’m still agog that some putz threw a whole bag of weed on the pyre, instead of respectfully smoking it up in her memory during the ceremony. Dumb ass.

  24. The TSA stops allowing airports to replace federal screeners with private employees.

    Well, it took them long enough…

    1. Took this long for airports to realize that they had the option. (Which was partially because of John Mica reminding them.)

      Incidentally, interesting move by the TSA, announcing this right after the guy who wrote the provision that they’re ignoring, John Mica, takes back the chairmanship of the House Transportation Committee.

      1. Re: John Thacker,

        Incidentally, interesting move by the TSA, announcing this right after the guy who wrote the provision that they’re ignoring, John Mica, takes back the chairmanship of the House Transportation Committee.

        Bureaucrats work in mysterious ways, JT, which is why us, the stupid ones, are being governed by these sages and wisemen, just like Tony told me.

  25. John Barry, the composer of music for many of the James Bond movies and Academy Award winner, died.

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/blo…..76950.html

  26. The Electronic Frontier Foundation exposes FBI abuses.

    Too late for Charlie, though…

    http://www.paperlessarchives.com/chaplin.html

  27. Tiger Mom is a Yale Law School professor and as Professor Bainbridge has pointed out, it seems almost an epidemic among faculty parents in New Haven.
    -from Johnny Longtorso’s link

    The world of elite faculty parents is a zero-sum world. Their sdhriveled little college professor brains see the world as a desperate tooth-and-claw battle for a tiny number of jobs which may only become available once in any associate professor’s lifetime.

    And, of course, if the daughter of a Yale law professor (having failed to land one of those lofty sinecures) ended up as a Walmart regional manager, making a comfortable six figure income providing affordable merchandise to working class people, it would be worse than tragic, it would be shameful.

    1. I am telling you, that book is hysterical. If I made up a character like Chua, people would accuse me of making a gross stereotype of people like her. There are a ton of gems in the WSJ excerpt. She only allowed her children to play classical music. So I guess if one of her daughters is the next Winton Marsalis she will be disowned. They are only allowed to concentrate on math and science, never drama or art. The whole point of her life seemed to be to create mindless drones pursuing approved lifestyles and careers.

      1. China may manufacture a lot of iPhones, but they sure as hell didn’t invent it.

        1. I would say Bingo, but I don’t want to infringe on your name. That is exactly it for all Asian countries. Wow, big surprise that Sony, the company that invented the Walkman, wasn’t able to figure out the iPod after they made math and science the emphasis of education.

  28. And what do they do about the ashes?

    What do they do about the popping fat, and the smell?

    Does everybody stand around secretly thinking, “Fuck, as soon as I get outta here, I’m gotta git me some ribs!”

    1. Pork cracklins.

      1. Nah. Probably only tossing a single O on the pyre wasn’t enough to trigger mass munchies, which would have probably been bad timing, given the circumstance.

    2. Someone wisely dumped a bag of pot on the pyre, so the smell should be tolerable.

    3. Evidently you can partially dispose of a corpse using a barbecue grill…

      http://www.chron.com/disp/stor…..74022.html

      http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,429746,00.html

      I can’t find the quote, but I remember reading back then that the killer’s neighbor asked him what he was cooking and that it smelled great.

      1. Hog Boilin’ Time.

  29. My favorite part is not the authors’, asinine apologist boot-lickers as they are, but by the random Ameri-cattle commenter who’s lips is freshly froth from flaccid state-worship.

    What the TSA is doing is a good thing. Look at it this way; would you rather have some screener you will never see again “touch your junk” as that idiot said last year, or would you rather get blown out of the sky? Take your pick.

    Actually, yeah… blow me. At least I can die like a man rather then some groveling slave. Even dismissing the extremely unlikely odds of such an attack, fuck letting some high-school dropout who doesn’t mind sexually assaulting you, let alone watch your kids go through the porno-scanner while they’re video taping it with their cell phone(s), touch my junk.

    I swear there’s not a statist dick big enough for some Americans to swallow…

    1. We are unworthy of our freedoms.

    2. People like that are as much the problem as state agents themselves.

    3. would you rather have some screener you will never see again “touch your junk” as that idiot said last year, or would you rather get blown out of the sky?

      I choose…neither, oh ye of the false dilemma.

  30. “Do What I Say, Not What I Do” department…

    Teacher Who Advises Colleagues On How To Avoid Affairs With Students, Caught Having Sex With Student Herself.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new…..chool.html

    1. Hey when I was 16 I’d have tapped that

    2. The caption is complete bullshit.
      Mother of two: Bowles, who faces up to 10 year in jail if convicted, is on $50,000 bail – but cannot approach anyone under teh age of 18, including her own children

      I understand if the husband doesn’t want her around his kids, but this caption implies that it’s court ordered (which it probably is) and I just don’t see how the two are related. A 16 year old boy and her 3? and 5? year old daughters??

  31. would you rather have some screener you will never see again “touch your junk” as that idiot said last year, or would you rather get blown out of the sky? Take your pick.

    Two AND ONLY TWO possible outcomes.

    I fucking hate people.

  32. On the ‘Radley Balko’s kind of market forces’ front:

    “Responding to massive student protests, Washington University has uninvited Dancing with the Stars finalist Bristol Palin from speaking at their annual ‘Sexual Responsibility Week’ panel and speaking event.”

    Penny Nance, CEO of the Concerned Women for America, told the Daily Caller that Washington University has engaged in censorship by withdrawing Palin’s speaking invitation.

    “The fact that Bristol Palin’s perspective was censored by the proponents of abortion proves once again that tolerance only extends to the Left,” Nance told TheDC.

    Nance added that the university has now robbed students of a chance to hear an alternative perspective on abstinence.

    “They fear the marketplace of ideas. Bristol will be fine, but the students were deprived of thoughts and experience delivered from a new perspective,” Nance told TheDC.

    Nah, it’s all part of this new and improved ‘market force’ that supposedly helps to end bigotry through massive protest (i.e. BULLYING), according to Balko…

  33. Nance added that the university has now robbed students of a chance to hear an alternative perspective on abstinence.

    Without State Universities, there can be no ideas!!!!!!!!111

    Don’t you see?!?!

    1. Re: P Brooks,

      Well, the point is that the argument favoring student protests to change supposedly bigoted views of an institution of higher learning should work both ways. Since the results I mention above would not jive with this newly-found ‘market forces against bigotry’ argument, then it is clear Balko jumped the gun on that one.

      The subsequent comments on that post where even more absurd, basically coming down to “tradition trumps property rights.”

    2. Actually, Washington University of St Louis is a private institution, IIANM.

      Funny how neither side in the culture wars recognizes the fact that an action like this by a private institution is not censorship. No one has forcibly silenced Bristol Palin.

      I must confess that I do find it hilarious that Bristol Palin is the Teen Abstinence Ambassador for the Candie’s Foundation fighting teen pregnancy.

      Doesn’t seem like she fought too hard herself. 🙂

      1. Re: Kreel Sarloo,

        Funny how neither side in the culture wars recognizes the fact that an action like this by a private institution is not censorship. No one has forcibly silenced Bristol Palin.

        Granted; however, that was not the point. Radley Balko posted last week how a demonstration of solidarity by students for an openly lesbian teacher, dismissed from her job from a private, conservative college, was an example of how ‘market forces’ could stem bigotry. Well, the argument should work both ways, and thus the anti-Bristol demonstration should be viewed as ‘market forces’ in action… but in this case, in FAVOR of wholesale bigotry against a girl who happens to be the daughter of a hated politician.

        Instead, I argue both protests were examples of BULLYING by an angry mob, no matter if against ‘bigotry’ or in favor. You cannot call them examples of ‘market forces.’

        The counterargument given by a few of the clueless went from an argument from tradition (as in “tradition trumps property rights”) and that the students have each less economic power than the institution SO their only recourse was protest(???), a very clumsy question-begging assertion. Oh, that one came from one of the run-of-the-mill statists that posts here from time to time.

  34. So, is the word PIGFORD worth looking into? Corruption? Beauracratic buffoonery? ‘Progressive’ malfeasance? Race baiting chicanery?

    Yeah, just print ‘Juicy’ on the rump of the whole thing.

  35. Balko jumped the gun on that one.

    I’m not sure what you are specifically referring to.

    I’m tired of the seemingly interminable whining about how, if “they” don’t allow “me” to speak in their forum/venue, I’m being censored.

    I couldn’t actually give a shit about Bristol Palin, or her “message”.

    Tax money, free exchange of ideas, oppression, blarglleblaaaaarghwaaaaaaaahblahblahblah

    Life is not fair.

    1. Re: P Brooks,

      I’m tired of the seemingly interminable whining about how, if “they” don’t allow “me” to speak in their forum/venue, I’m being censored.

      No argument from me, nobody is entitled to someone else’s soapbox. However, the point is that student protest is NOT a form of ‘market approach’, like Balko was so gleeful to point out when the protest server to reinstante an openly lesbian gym teacher in a conservative, religious college. The argument should work both ways: It protest is good when supposedly serving to change so-called the bigoted views of an intitution, it should be EQUALLY laudable when IMPOSING such bigoted views on another, as both cases ARE examples of IMPOSITION.

      1. Sorry: when the protest served

      2. The idea is that the “imposition” is not one in which force is used. I thought libertarians were ok with social pressure as long as force is not used?

        1. Re: MNG,

          The idea is that the “imposition” is not one in which force is used.

          Which basically tells me you think a mob is not force in itself.

          I thought libertarians were ok with social pressure as long as force is not used?

          Bullying a private institution by “protesting” in its own property is NOT simply social pressure.

          “When in doubt, equivocate.”
          Old Statist proverb.

          1. Is protesting on their property the problem you have? I agree they should have to leave if asked. But the fact that people may assemble to discourage some practice of another seems unproblematic to me.

            1. Re: MNG,

              Is protesting on their property the problem you have?

              How quaint – you question my motives.

              “When in doubt, question their motives.”
              Old Statist proverb.

              I agree they should have to leave if asked.

              As long as you agree, they have nothing to fear!

              But the fact that people may assemble to discourage some practice of another seems unproblematic to me.

              Surprise!

      3. “It (sic) protest is good when supposedly serving to change so-called the bigoted views of an intitution, it should be EQUALLY laudable when IMPOSING such bigoted views on another”

        Er, unless you’d like to see, well, less bigotry…

        1. Re: MNG,

          Er, unless you’d like to see, well, less bigotry…

          My personal feelings are irrelevant, and so are yours. What I construe as “bigotry” may or may not agree with you, thus OPINIONS should not be the basis for public POLICY, as they stem from SUBJECTIVE VALUATIONS.

          1. Like your opinions about private property, autonomy and the like?

            1. Re: MNG,

              Like your opinions about private property, autonomy and the like?

              Only if YOU believe YOUR property rights are contingent to someone’s OPINION on them.

              If not, then FUCK OFF!!!!

  36. BTW- Since the CNN airport screener story doesn’t mention it, Rep. Bennie Thompson is a Democrat. Shocker – he is against the privatization program.

    1. If party affiliation isn’t mentioned, its an implied ‘D’. Always.

  37. ps- anybody associated in any way with a group calling itself Concerned Women for America can fuck right off.

    1. Re: P Brooks,

      No argument from here, but that was not the point of the post.

  38. Mr. Lugar said at a breakfast with reporters this month that he believed that many Tea Party supporters were motivated by anger “about how things have turned out for them.” They want to express themselves, but their complaints often boil down to nothing more specific, he said, than “we want this or that stopped, or there is spending, big government.”

    “These are all, we would say, sort of large clich? titles,” he said, “but they are not able to articulate all the specifics.”
    NYT

    In other words, “STFU you sorry hicks. Teh Grownups are talking.”

    1. Well, if they keep voting for him, he can keep on talking that way.

    2. This makes me angrier the more I think about it.

      If his constituents were coming up to him saying “we need more jobs” or “we need affordable X” or “save us from terrorism” or “stop sending jobs to India”, he would have NO PROBLEM churning out some bills to that effect.

      But someone says “cut back spending” and he’s like “WHAAAAAAAAA? How can I take seriously such a vague suggestion? I have no idea how to translate that into reality.”

      1. Neither do the tea partiers. Correct me if Im wrong, but has a TP spokesperson advocated for cutting or eliminating a single specific program?

        1. Well, I believe Rand Paul advocated eliminating some programs as part of his proposed $500BB cuts.

    3. As nebulous and cliche as “social justice”?

      Dear Dick,

      DIAF

      Sincerely,
      A. Teabagger

  39. Krugabe makes my head hurt. Again.

    First of all, inflation in China is China’s problem, not ours. It’s true that right now China’s currency is pegged to the dollar. But that’s China’s choice; if China doesn’t like U.S. monetary policy, it’s free to let its currency rise. Neither China nor anyone else has the right to demand that America strangle its nascent economic recovery just because Chinese exporters want to keep the renminbi undervalued.

    Ummm, Paul- what about the people who borrow cheaply at Fed-induced ZIRP, in order to chase returns in the Chinese market?

    And- there is no inflation!

    Why? Because the Fed chooses to ignore it.

    1. First of all, inflation in China is China’s problem, not ours.

      Right. Inflation in one of our biggest trading partners, and on of the biggest exporters on the planet, couldn’t possibly have any impact on us.

      Neither China nor anyone else has the right to demand that America strangle its nascent economic recovery just because Chinese exporters want to keep the renminbi undervalued.

      The nerve of those foreigners, complaining because relentless money printing by the US to fund its budget is driving double digit inflation in their countries! Stupid wogs. They don’t understand that we have to paper over our economic failures to keep the 8-figure bonuses flowing at the too-big-to-fail banks, and keep our ruling class entrenched, for just a little longer.

  40. How Greeks Treat Entrepenuers worse than Sisyphus

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01…..greek.html

    For decades, Greece has been a wonderful place to be a lawyer, a pharmacist, an architect, a university president or even a truck driver? all occupations protected by an array of laws that have shielded them from local and foreign competitors. Greek pharmacists are guaranteed a minimum profit on their sales and charge some of the highest prices in Europe. And because they have fixed minimum fees, the 40,000 or so lawyers in Greece receive more for their time than their peers in many other European countries.

    The Greek economy is riddled with distortions ? the number of trucking licenses has remained unchanged in Greece since 1971, for example, and the country is among the world’s leaders in lawyers per capita. It has one lawyer for every 250 people, compared with about one for 272 in the United States.

    The effect on Greek competitiveness could not be more pernicious.

  41. And since SF elections are so one-sided, you can be sure all this dough will end up in the hands of challengers, right?

    “…the city will subsidize mayoral candidates to the tune of $6 million to $8 million…”

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/…..z1CdTCEaFd

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