22 March 2010
The Dumbocrats in the House of Reprehensives chose not to pass the Senate's version of ObamaCareless using an underhanded method; not, of course, because they had qualms about again violating the promise of Nancy Pilosi (see the list of domanisms) that this would be "the most ethical Congress ever," but simply because she and the bizarrely-named Steny Hoyer felt confident that they had the votes to further the Left's anti-crusade for bureaucratized medicine without resorting here to something Democratic but undemocratic, and that to forego violating the spirit of the US Constitution in this instance would somehow be a "public-relations coup." I'm disappointed with the leftists; since one of the chief objections to adoption of the Senate bill was its provision for federal funding of foeticide (induced abortion), I thought that it would be verbally appropriate for them to overcome that obstacle by means of the "Slaughter rule."
I've just found out that Emperor Nerobama actually did get one thing right in 2009; he picked the Tar Heels to win that year's NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. This does not, however, mean that he's a whiz in that respect any more than in any other, since he may have picked them only because he's a fellow heel.
15 March 2010
Even a mediocre film from the golden era of cinema (which came to an end ca. 1966) is usually more entertaining than a critically acclaimed one made nowadays.
08 March 2010
As an historian, I think one can argue that the purchase of Alaska was indeed "Seward's folly." The investment has repaid itself many times over, thanks to the discovery there of both gold and petroleum (and Sarah Palin), but in 1867 no one knew that the future State contained those resources; furthermore, this transaction meant that the USA, still under a century old, gobbled up thousands-more square miles of faraway territory without having the resources to defend or even adequately govern the area.
02 March 2010
The election of a Republican to the US Senate from Massachusetts is rightly being heralded as an indication of the turn of the political tide—I can't help observing that it's been eight years since the most recent Republican landslide (2002, for those of you educated in a public school) and that the previous one occurred eight years before then (1994)—but those of us who yearn for good government ought not to become so euphoric as those who term the vote a "revolution." The rapid reversal of Democratic fortunes is another of the wild oscillations between the major parties that we've seen over the past two decades, and it may not be the last. Anyway, the current economic improvement (which will probably end next year), in conjunction with the short memories of the voters, means that there may not be a landslide this fall.
Furthermore, although I'd like to see Republicans retake both chambers of the Congress, I don't want it to happen in the upcoming round of elections, which unlikely to happen anyway because of the 18-seat disparity in the Senate. Recall what happened in the 1990's. The best thing that could have happened was for Republicans to control the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the Oval Office simultaneously for at least four years. The second-best thing was that the Democrats would control all three for the same period, and inevitably discredit themselves through their inability or unwillingness to govern capably. The worst that could have happened is what did happen: Republicans gained a majority in each house of the Congress, and made improvements that included the only kind about which people ultimately care (viz., strengthening of the economy), but, because the average voter is unable to distinguish between something effected by the President and something that merely happens during his term in office, a Democrat usurped the credit. (The circumstances are somewhat different now; Obama is a stronger, though no better, leader than Clinton, whose very status as a political cipher facilitated the Republican legislative dynamism to which I referred in the previous sentence.)
Finally, it ought to be admitted that this is no occasion to go sing Yankee Doodle Dandy. If it's true that, to quote Sen. Scott Brown, "people aren't stupid" (I would say "benighted"), why did they elect Obama and so forth to begin with?