Quote of the Day – “What if He’s Lying?” Edition

Via Instapundit, this comes from a Dana Milbank op-ed in the WaPo, The price Gina Gray paid for whistleblowing:

Obama came into office pledging transparency and professing admiration for government workers who expose abuses. But his administration has pursued more cases under the 1917 Espionage Act than all previous administrations combined (including the prosecution of National Security Agency workers who tried to register their objections through “proper” channels). And the alleged intimidation of would-be whistleblowers goes beyond those involved in sensitive intelligence. For example, diplomat Gregory Hicks told a House committee that he was demoted because he gave congressional investigators a description of the attack on Americans in Benghazi, Libya, that was at odds with the official version of events.

A lot of people, not just David Sirota, are beginning to ask if they’re being lied to. Even Noam Chomsky is admitting it.

Too little, too late, but it’s at least a little rewarding to be able to say “Told you so.” 


A United Auto Workers Fairy Tale by Mike Patterson:

Once upon a time, in Chattanooga a young girl made her way to work, picking flowers to add to her basket of posies which she plucked with fingers and cheeks so rosy.

“Where are you going,” came a sudden voice from the shadows, “on such a bright day as this?”

“Just to work, kind sir,” she answered, “and off I must go or my shift I will miss.”

“You don’t want to go there,” said the voice with a growl. “Not without my help.” And he stepped from the bush as she let out a yelp. “So you work at the factory,” said the half beast/half man, “toiling on the line of assembly for the company plan.”

“That is my job,” said she. “Which I do every day, and for which I’m rewarded with benefits and pay.”

“So you believe,” said he, “a bill you’ve been sold, bundled in a bow with the lies you’ve been told. The truth is your superiors design to oppress, to use and abuse, which crimes I can redress.
Bring you with me to your factory, and I can bargain for you collectively.” He squinted his red eyes at her. “More pay you will see and benefits too, will be your reward for paying my due.”

“Actually,” said Volksmaiden, “entry-level workers at Volkswagen AG make almost exactly what comparable workers get at unionized General Motors.”

“In addition,” she continued, “the President’s signature health care law has undermined your argument to be able to provide me with superior health benefits. In fact, three major labor bosses have written a letter to Congressional leaders complaining that the legislation they supported has now made the type of health plans that unions negotiate ‘unsustainable.’”

“Well,” stuttered the beast, “what I can promise to thee for accompanying me is peace of mind and job security.”

“Uh, I don’t think so,” replied Volksmaiden. “According to WorkplaceChoice.org, the unionized Big Three Detroit auto companies have shed hundreds of thousands of jobs in the last dozen years, in large part because of burdensome union work rules, while non-union factories like we have here in Chattanooga have created thousands of jobs throughout the South.”

“Uh, uh … OK, it’s true,” growled the beast. “It’s not for your benefit I am here, you see. It’s the King, the King! Who’s hungry for fees!”

“Tell Bob, no thanks,” said Volksmaiden. “Now if you’ll excuse me,” she said, “my ride is here; it’s a Passat, driven by my grandmother. It was Car of the Year, you know, according to Motor Trend. A success, Mr. Wolf, that for you spells…

…The End.”

Last weekend I watched the documentary Detropia, about the downfall and decay of the city of Detroit. Very early on the statistic that Detroit’s population has dropped from 1.8 million to under 700,000 over the last two decades was presented.  We were introduced to George McGregor, president of UAW Local 22, who takes us on a driving tour of multiple closed auto plants, and one that is still open – an American Axle Manufacturing plant that, we’re told, is one of the few that hasn’t been moved out of the country. A bit later, McGregor, in a meeting with (I assume) UAW stewards, presents AAM’s last proposal for a contract in which there are substantial pay cuts to workers. The unanimous response: send it back without voting on it.

The plant closed.

So no pay is better than less pay. Check.

And people wonder why unions in this country (with the exception of public-sector unions) are dying?

Two Weeks

…until Gun Blogger Rendezvous v8.0!

If you haven’t made your plans yet, you’re running out of time!  Once again, here’s the schedule of events from Mr. Completely:

Wednesday, September 4th

6:15 PM. For those arriving on Wednesday, KeeWee and I and some of the other early arrivers are planning on having dinner at the El Dorado Buffet Restaurant. The El Dorado is part of the same giant casino complex as the Silver Legacy and the Circus Circus. The El Dorado Buffet is at one end of the complex. The Silver Legacy is in the middle, and the Circus Circus is on the opposite end.

Thursday, September 5th

8:30 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality Room for one of the restaurants for breakfast.
1:15 PM. Leave the Hospitality Room to car pool to Cabela’s.
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM. Guided tour Cabela’s and browsing/shopping. Buy ammo? Pick up munchies and soft drinks on way back to hotel.
6:00 PM. Leave the Hospitality Room to go to dinner. Location to be determined later.
Thursday Evening until midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.

Friday, September 6th

8:00 AM. NRA Sponsored breakfast in our Hospitality room. NRA representative will be speaking to us over breakfast.
9:00 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, the Pyramid range for rifle and pistol target shooting out to 900 yards.
9:45 AM – 2:00 PM. At the range.
4:00 PM – 5:45 PM. Show-N-Tell at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Manufacturers and show new stuff, and attendees show neat things too!
6:00 PM Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to go to Dos Gecko’s Mexican Restaurant for dinner sponsored by Gunlawsbystate.com and Brian Ciyou.
7:15 PM (Approx) Ray Carter from the Second Amendment Foundation and Brian Ciyou from Gunlawsbystate.com, will talk to us, and other industry, shooting sports, and legal aspect folks will follow.
7:45 PM Double Elimination Pistol competition in Hospitality Room using the Optical Computer Aided Training Simulator from Outwest systems, using real guns shooting lasers instead of bullets. An OCAT System will be awarded to one of the competitors by random drawing!
Friday Evening until midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.

Saturday, September 7th

8:00 AM Gunauctions.com sponsored Breakfast in the Silver Legacy Hospitality room.
9:00 AM Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, Western Nevada Pistol League Action Pistol bays at the Pyramid range for an introduction to Steel Challenge Action Pistol shooting, a demonstration of the live fire version of the OCAT system, and more.
9:45 AM – 2:00 PM At the range.
5:00 PM – 6 PM Short presentation by the National Shooting Sports Foundation.
6:00 PM NSSF all you can eat pizza feed at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. After dinner will be the fund raiser raffle for Project Valour-IT and the drawings for the door prizes.
Saturday Evening until Midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.

Sunday, September 8th

8:00 AM Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room for one of the restaurants for breakfast
9:00 AM Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, Western Nevada Pistol League Action Pistol bays at the Pyramid range for some fun with the Black Powder bowling Ball Mortar from Gunauctions.com, and some other surprises you won’t want to miss!
9:45 AM – 1:00PM At the range.

I’ve been every year and enjoyed myself immensely, mostly by getting to hang around with people who like what I like and want to talk about it. All the shooting is great, but the BS sessions in the Hospitality Room are the reason I go.

Hope to see you there!

Obama Lied, Privacy Died

Well, it looks like there are cracks starting to form in the media dike.  David Sirota writes in Salon:

I guess it’s possible Obama has merely been “wrong” but has not been lying. But the implications of that would be just as bad — albeit in a different way — as if he were deliberately lying. It would mean that he is making sweeping and wildly inaccurate statements without bothering to find out if they are actually true. Worse, for him merely to be wrong but not deliberately lying, it would mean that he didn’t know the most basic facts about how his own administration runs. It would, in other words, mean he is so totally out of the loop on absolutely everything — even the public news cycle — that he has no idea what’s going on.

I, of course, don’t buy that at all. I don’t buy that a constitutional lawyer and legal scholar didn’t know that the FISA court is secret — aka the opposite of “transparent.” I don’t buy that he simply didn’t see any of the news showing that spying is happening in the United States. And I don’t buy that he didn’t know that there is evidence — both public and inside his own administration — of the NSA “actually abusing” its power.

I don’t buy any of that because, to say the least, it makes no sense. I just don’t buy that he’s so unaware of the world around him that he made such statements from a position of pure ignorance. On top of that, he has a motive. Yes, Obama has an obvious political interest in trying to hide as much of his administration’s potentially illegal behavior as possible, which means he has an incentive to calculatedly lie. For all of these reasons, it seems safe to suggest that when it comes to the NSA situation, the president seems to be lying.

Still, this is just Salon.com. Now, if the New York Times publishes something like this, the remainder of The Won’s term would be interesting – in the Chinese curse meaning of the word.

Quote of the Day – Samizdata Edition

(N)ever in human history has there been a smaller percentage of humanity living one failed harvest away from communal starvation. Is the divide between rich and poor actually increasing and more extreme than, say, in the eighteenth century? Or any time before then actually? In reality never has a larger percentage of humanity been, by any reasonable definition, middle class, than right now.

The fact large areas of poverty exists at all in our technologically advanced age is a dark miracle wrought largely by state imposed impediments to trade, disincentives to employ, insecurity of private property title and many other government policies of the sort Matt Damon (that tireless supporter of state education whose children are in a private school) strongly approves of.

Perry de Havilland, Neill Blomkamp must be living in some parallel universe