Darius Rucker - True Believers
19 minutes ago
Washington (CNN) -- A program that allows airports to replace government screeners with private screeners is being brought to a standstill, just a month after the Transportation Security Administration said it was "neutral" on the program.There is no advantage to people doing a better job for less money from the perspective of a government bureaucrat, nor from the perspective of the TSA's union, which supports the decision for obvious reasons. But while not surprising, it does provide a rather insightful glimpse into how government takeovers work. First, government provides a 'voluntary' solution, no strings attached and anyone can opt out. Then it makes itself the arbiter of who can opt out. Then it decides no one can opt out*. It always works this way. What's amazing is that it works every time.
TSA chief John Pistole said Friday he has decided not to expand the program beyond the current 16 airports, saying he does not see any advantage to it.
Too many Americans are delusional in thinking we have a national education system that is fair. It isn't. We all know that you can go from community to community and see some elementary, middle and high school campuses that look like college campuses, while others look like prisons.I like Roland Martin. He's a pretty clear thinker who is not afraid to step outside the accepted boundaries when it comes to solutions - in this case, the problem he is addressing is the case of a woman who illegally registered her daughters in a school district they didn't reside in. She committed a fraud, but for the best of reasons. But Martin, who is absolutely correct in calling for a top-to-bottom redesign of the school system, including vouchers, single-sex schools, and ROTC options for parents, misses one very important point. A lot of inner-city districts suffer from having too many black students in them, and the only way to save them, in cold Machiavellian logic, is to destroy them utterly. Now before you call Reverend Jackson to boycott my blog, hear me out. It has no more to do with blackness than it has to do with money. It has everything to do with the kinds of students that attend those schools, the cultural attitudes toward learning that they bring, and their expectations of the value of education.
Those districts with money hire teachers with master's degrees and Ph.D.s; those with little money rely on those with only teacher certificates. Those with money can invest in iPads and laptops; those without are thankful just to have enough chalk, erasers and pencils....
Citing the need to keep Americans better informed about specific terror threats, President Barack Obama's top US security official announced Thursday an end to the color-coded alert system drafted in the wake of 9/11...I never saw that 'perpetual state of fear' caused by the government's scary thermometer. What I saw was people look at it twice, recognize its intrinsic worthlessness, and then completely ignore it. What is the terror level right now and when did it last change? I have no idea. No one has any idea*. Either you're so scared that your brain has locked away that knowledge to preserve your sanity, or you don't remember because it's not worth remembering.
"[The new alerts] may recommend certain actions... and they will have a specific end date. You can clap on that one, yes," [Napolitano] said in an apparent acknowledgement of the frustrations many Americans voiced over the constant state of heightened alert that critics of the system say left the country in a perpetual state of fear.
Authorities are worried a recent wave of police officer shootings may not be a coincidence.Really? That is odd. But what's the evidence that the relationship of these shootings in Idianapolis, Oregon, Washington, Florida, and Detroit may not be a coincidence?
In just 24 hours, at least 11 cops were shot around the country...
"It's not a fluke," Richard Roberts, a spokesman for the International Union of Police Associations, told MSNBC.com.
"There's nothing in this that makes sense at all," Police Chief Ralph Godbee told reporters during a briefing on the case.I see. The shootings don't appear to be connected, but they are not a coincidence, either. But what manner of mastermind would be able to (not) mastermind a series of shootings that are not coincidental and yet not connected?
While all the shootings don’t appear to be connected...
While all the shootings don’t appear to be connected, Roberts says they have one thing in common.Indeed. Well, that certainly explains a few things.
"We don't have any data, but there seems to be a type of criminal out there looking to thwart authority," he told the station.
HONOLULU – A privacy law that shields birth certificates has prompted Democratic Gov. Neil Abercrombie to abandon efforts to dispel claims that President Barack Obama was born outside Hawaii, his office says.Uh-huh. See, here's the funny thing: I already knew Hawaii law forbad the governor releasing the birth certificate, and I don't even live there. The governor and his staff had to know it, because in all the time Governor Dufus has spent talking about it he has been consistently asked about that fact. And yet they had to go making all this noise* which in the end just feeds into the suspicions and evidence** of those whom Abercrombie was trying to silence.
It has now been established that Sam Brownback, R-Kan is a member of the Family or C Street. It is a religious cult that many member of the US congress belong to...I very much enjoy the moonbat's lack of respect for the integrity of words.
As the Republican Party implodes the public is becoming aware of a secretive Christian society known as the Family or the Fellowship. The group was founded in 1935 in opposition to FDR's New Deal and its adherents subscribe to a far right Christian fundamentalist and free market ideology.
President Barack Obama Tuesday ordered a government-wide review of regulations with the goal of eliminating those that hurt job creation and make the U.S. economy less competitive...On the contrary, it is perfectly clear: it will have no effect whatsoever. None. Nada. Zilch. Those regulations that are based in law cannot be changed on the fly, and those created on the fly exist because someone, somewhere, in government thinks they are or were a good idea or that they are based on law. Sure, there may be repeals here and there of a few so 'progress' can be shown, but if anyone thinks an op-ed in the WSJ is going to change how the federal government actually operates, I would suggest that person has no idea how the federal government actually operates.
It was not immediately clear, however, how far-reaching Obama's new regulatory strategy would be in changing the way the federal government operates.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – President Barack Obama plans to loosen Cuban travel policy to allow students and church groups to go to the communist country, the administration announced Friday...Of course, Republicans are going nuts on this, saying things like "Loosening these regulations will not help ... the Cuban people free themselves from the tyranny that engulfs them."
Shortly afterward, the media reported that a 22-year-old male had been arrested in the shooting. His name had not yet been released. I believe your reaction to that piece of news depended greatly on your status in American society -- namely, whether you're a Muslim.I'm going to agree with Mr. Obeidallah that it's probably unfair that America's reaction might have been different*. But it's not because America has something against Muslims just because they're different or new or shiny. To illustrate, let's dial the clock back a couple decades to a time when the lily white Irish Republican Army was blowing up a lot of Brits. If some Irish-born American had shot a politician while screaming Irish Nationalist slogans, would it not be reasonable to tentatively conclude that he was a terrorist?
If you are a typical white person, I would imagine your initial response was relief the suspect was caught, and an attempt to make sense of why he committed this horrible crime.
But if you are Muslim or of Arab heritage, your reaction to the news of the arrest was likely: "Please don't let him be Arab ... please don't let him be Muslim." Believe me, that was my reaction...
But let's be brutally honest. If the suspect's name wasn't Jared but was Jamil or Mahmud instead, America's reaction might have been different. What if a Muslim-American had made anti-government statements and shot a U.S. congresswoman at a political event?
Three Republican cardinals on the House Appropriations Committee say they view the ban on earmarks as temporary and that lawmakers should retain the right to direct spending to their districts.Yes, as soon as the public has confidence in the new process, change it back to the old crooked one and hope they don't notice. Combine this with the fact that the non-tea party wing of the GOP has knitted a loophole into the House rules that makes it easy for money that is 'saved' in one place to merely be shifted elsewhere - most likely to an Appropriation Committee member's district - and it is becoming inarguable that the new more conservative house GOP is a whole lot like the old more conservative house GOP.
None of the three spending-subcommittee chairmen have a specific timeframe or plan in mind to resume earmarks, but they said earmarking should be restored once the public has more confidence in the process.
Over the past three decades, on average, about 20 mass shootings -- with at least four slain victims -- have occurred annually in the United States, claiming nearly 100 lives each year.That's 100 victims a year in a nation of 300 million people, and about one-seventh of the number of bicyclists who are killed by motorists every year. Now obviously, nothing can minimize the pain of the families involved - whether your mom or daughter is killed by a car or a gun or a fall on the ice, she is just as dead and it hurts just as bad. When a family member or a friend bemoans the loss of a loved one, you listen respectfully, offer what you can to help, and say a little prayer that somehow their pain might be eased.
Without minimizing the pain and suffering of these victims and their families, the risk of this type of crime is significantly less than a wide array of other catastrophes that we confront every day.
[Loughner's] political beliefs are also uncertain. One woman who claimed she knew Loughner as a teenager described him as a liberal, but Loughner more recently attempted to join the military, and was rejected for undisclosed reasons.Someone described Loughner as a liberal, but he tried to join the military - that fact is apparently now sufficient proof to liberals that you are not a liberal**. But John Kerry says that it is military service which is the final proof of patriotism.
In what education historian Diane Ravitch calls the "dominant narrative" of education reform today, buzzwords like "accountability" and "choice" are used as window dressing for a concerted effort to impose corporate management techniques and market-style competition on the education system. Teachers unions and anyone else who dares to disagree with this agenda are invariably accused of being "against reform" and "for the status quo."Let that sink in a bit. The dominant narrative in education reform is a change from the present central command techniques to corporate management techniques. The Socialist Workers Party has a problem with those who are against this reform being called "against reform," and with those are opposed to these proposed changes being called "for the status quo." What are you supposed to call it? A chocolate mocha? Seriously, that's what the words mean*.
The Corps of Engineers office at Lake O' the Pines says they are not exactly sure why [dead birds on the road] happens, but it appears likely the birds are walking or roosting or flying on and around the bridge and many of them probably get hit and killed by motor vehicles.Yes, I know it's only "probably," but I feel better anyway.
Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisers, said if Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling, the “impact on the economy would be catastrophic.”Actually, a failure to up the credit limit would not be a default at all: refusing to borrow more money does not in any sense mean that what you borrowed in the past will not be paid back. Nor do you damage your own "full faith and credit" by refusing to go deeper in debt*. As is often the case when government officials make scary announcements, their claims are not just incorrect, they are exactly backward.
“I don’t see why anybody’s playing chicken with the debt ceiling,” Goolsbee said today on ABC’s “This Week” program. “If we get to the point where we damage the full faith and credit of the United States, that would be the first default in history caused purely by insanity.”
"The necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude and perseverance."
-- Samuel Adams