January 31, 2013 § Leave a comment
Karl Marx summed up Communism as “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.” This is a good, pithy saying, which, in practice, has succeeded in bringing, upon those under its sway, misery, poverty, rape, torture, slavery, and death.
For the saying implies but does not name the effective agency of its supposed utopia. The agency is called “The State,” and the motto, fleshed out, for the benefit of the easily confused must read “The State will take from each according to his ability: the State will give to each according to his needs.” “Needs and abilities” are, of course, subjective. So the operative statement may be reduced to “the State shall take, the State shall give.”via The Daily Beast.
This is an amazing piece. If you have not read you should.
Two more quotes:
Rule by bureaucrats and functionaries is an example of the first part of the Marxist equation: that the Government shall determine the individual’s abilities.
As rules by the Government are one-size-fits-all, any governmental determination of an individual’s abilities must be based on a bureaucratic assessment of the lowest possible denominator.
The Left loves a phantom statistic that a firearm in the hands of a citizen is X times more likely to cause accidental damage than to be used in the prevention of crime, but what is there about criminals that ensures that their gun use is accident-free? If, indeed, a firearm were more dangerous to its possessors than to potential aggressors, would it not make sense for the government to arm all criminals, and let them accidentally shoot themselves? Is this absurd? Yes, and yet the government, of course, is arming criminals.
Violence by firearms is most prevalent in big cities with the strictest gun laws. In Chicago and Washington, D.C., for example, it is only the criminals who have guns, the law-abiding populace having been disarmed, and so crime runs riot.
I wish I wrote that first paragraph there.
Thank you David Mamet.
January 31, 2013 § Leave a comment
Illinois was fifth in a ranking of extra wireless costs, the Tax Foundation said, with the user paying an average of about 21.8 percent in additional federal, state and local taxes and fees. Only callers in Nebraska, Washington, New York and Florida pay more.
via Chicago Tribune.
I was just talking to someone about this the other day. Ya know, if you move your “address” out of state you can avoid some of these fees. With paperless billing does it really matter where the company sends (or doesn’t send) your bill?
I’m sure people who live in Indiana or Wisconsin burn plenty of minutes across the border. Seems like a reasonably solution to me.
January 31, 2013 § 1 Comment
Gov. Pat Quinn’s administration delayed Wednesday’s planned sale of $500 million in construction bonds, saying a recent credit downgrade because of inaction on government worker pension reform left the market “unsettled.”
The decision was made after officials with the governor’s budget office spoke with potential bidders who indicated they would seek interest rates higher than what the state wanted to pay.”
In a bond market when there is uncertainly, you pay an extra premium, which we decided was imprudent to pay,” said John Sinsheimer, director of capital markets for the state. “So we pulled them, and will bring the back at a future date when everything has settled down.”
via Chicago Tribune.
The first thing to do when you’re in a hole is stop digging. Quinn has the right idea… now may not be the best time to issue more bonds. But because the finances are so bad pretty soon he will not have a choice. More debt — at higher interest rates — is our future.
More troubling however is note how the Gov’s office is not waiting until they actually fix anything. He’s not going to defuse the pension time-bomb. He and The Machine are not going to balance the budget or develop a long term spending plan to correct the state’s deficit. The plan is to merely wait until “everything has settled down.”
We deserve so much better than that.
So alas… people don’t like to hear bad news and will continue to vote for Santa Claus. We need not be real. Just keep voting for the guy who tells you it’s somebody else’s problem.
We’re so screwed.
January 31, 2013 § Leave a comment
An 8 minute history lesson about the power of an air rifle.
January 30, 2013 § Leave a comment
Medical malpractice lawyers are poised to make more money after Gov. Pat Quinn quietly signed a law allowing them to collect higher fees.
Doctors groups criticize the change, arguing that it will result in less money for injured patients who need it for costly health care and therapy. They also contend the measure was quickly pushed through the General Assembly in the waning days of a lame-duck session by ruling Democrats friendly to trial lawyers. …
The bill surfaced in the Senate on Jan. 2, tacked onto a measure that originally dealt with firearm ranges. A day later it passed the Senate mostly on Democratic votes. Over in the House, powerful Democratic Speaker Michael Madigan sponsored the bill. A few days later it went to the governor on a 67-46 vote, again with mostly Democratic support. Quinn signed the measure into law Jan. 18, disclosing his move on a Friday afternoon, when politicians often choose to bury controversial news.The law eliminates the sliding scale that spelled out how much attorneys could charge for bringing medical malpractice cases. Previously, attorneys could collect one-third of an award up to $150,000, 25 percent for awards ranging from $150,000 to $1 million and 20 percent for awards of more than $1 million. Attorneys also could petition the court for even higher fees, a practice the new law eliminated.
The new system will see attorneys collecting a flat one-third rate on all awards. The Medical Society contends that means a patient who was awarded $1 million would now pay $333,333 in attorney’s fees as opposed to $262,500 under the old standards — the first $150,000 of the award at the one-third rate and the rest at the 25 percent rate.
via Quincy Journal.
The Machine at it again.
If this was such a great law, so helpful to the general public, then why passed in the dead of night and signed on a Friday afternoon?
Just more corruption from Michael Madigan and his trial lawyer buddies.
January 29, 2013 § Leave a comment
In December, George and his young son were watching the horrific details of the Sandy Hook Elementary School murders on television and when he saw the fear in his son’s eyes, his engineering brain kicked in. He said to his son, “We can fix this. We have to do something.”
Very cool concept.
These are the kinds of ideas that I like. They ‘harden’ the target. We need to make schools safe for kids. We did it against fire; now it’s time to do it against the ‘active shooter’.
I quoted from this article before, but not this segment:
“How many kids have been killed by school fire in all of North America in the past 50 years? Kids killed… school fire… North America… 50 years… How many? Zero. That’s right. Not one single kid has been killed by school fire anywhere in North America in the past half a century. Now, how many kids have been killed by school violence?” …
“In 1999,” Grossman said, “school violence claimed what at the time was an all time record number of kids’ lives. In that year there were 35 dead and a quarter of a million serious injuries due to violence in the school. How many killed by fire that year? Zero. But we hear people say, ‘That’s the year Columbine happened, that’s an anomaly.’ Well, in 2004 we had a new all time record — 48 dead in the schools from violence. How many killed by fire that year? Zero. Let’s assign some grades. Put your teacher hat on and give out some grades. What kind of grade do you give the firefighter for keeping kids safe? An ‘A,’ right? Reluctantly, reluctantly, the cops give the firefighters an ‘A,’ right? Danged firefighters, they sleep ‘till they’re hungry and eat ‘till they’re tired. What grade do we get for keeping the kids safe from violence? Come on, what’s our grade? Needs improvement, right?”
“Why can’t we be like little Johnny Firefighter?” Grossman asked as he prowled the stage. “He’s our A+ student!”
He paused, briefly, and answered with a voice that blew through the hall like thunder, “Denial, denial, denial!”
Grossman commanded, “Look up at the ceiling! See all those sprinklers up there? They’re hard to spot — they’re painted black — but they’re there. While you’re looking, look at the material the ceiling is made of. You know that that stuff was selected because it’s fire-retardant. Hooah? Now look over there above the door — you see that fire exit sign? That’s not just any fire exit sign — that’s a ‘battery-backup-when-the-world-ends-it-will-still-be-lit’ fire exit sign. Hooah?”
Walking from the stage toward a nearby fire exit and exterior wall, Grossman slammed the palm of his hand against the wall and exclaimed, “Look at these wall boards! They were chosen because they’re what?! Fireproof or fire retardant, hooah? There is not one stinking thing in this room that will burn!”
Pointing around the room as he spoke, Grossman continued, “But you’ve still got those fire sprinklers, those fire exit signs, fire hydrants outside, and fire trucks nearby! Are these fire guys crazy? Are these fire guys paranoid? No! This fire guy is our A+ student! Because this fire guy has redundant, overlapping layers of protection, not a single kid has been killed by school fire in the last 50 years!
“But you try to prepare for violence — the thing much more likely to kill our kids in schools, the thing hundreds of times more likely to kill our kids in schools — and people think you’re paranoid. They think you’re crazy. …They’re in denial.”
via Police One.
We need to address this problem with a multi-layered solution.
Our school must be made safe.