Free Markets, Free People

Monthly Archives: January 2009

Special Friends Get Special Breaks (Repost)

All in the name of bread and circuses I suppose:

National Journal reported this week that the Senate’s economic stimulus bill includes a provision that would make Hollywood studios eligible for a special 50% write-off of equipment purchases. According to the report, “the provision is backed by firms like the Walt Disney Co., and the industry trade group the Motion Picture Association of America.”

About those “special interests” which “control Washington” and the promise of “no more!”

Uh, yeah.

So let’s see: Democrats object to cutting the U.S. 35% corporate tax rate — which is higher than in all of Europe, undermines economic growth and discourages job creation — for all companies on grounds that it favors the rich and powerful. But Democrats will carve out tax loopholes for businesses they like and that write them campaign checks.

Hope and change.


The Ayers Resurrection Tour (Repost)

Ed. note: This post was originally saved on the old template. I reposted it here simply to avoid readers having to click over to the prior site

William Ayers showing his love for his country

William Ayers showing his love for his country

If Obama is the messiah, does that make Bill Ayers Lazarus? By that I mean, is there any doubt Ayers would be wasting away in obscurity without Barack Obama? Instead, the unrepentant terrorist turned ill-qualified college professor has regained whatever notoriety he had lost:

Ayers, co-founder of the ’60s Weather Underground radical anti-war group, drew an angry and vocal group of protesters who condemned his appearance at St. Mary’s Soda Center, where he drew cheers and boos from the crowd of about 500.

The controversial author and education professor at the University of Illinois was repeatedly characterized as an “unrepentant terrorist” by GOP vice presidential candidate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin during the presidential campaign.

“I was going to propose that Sarah Palin and I have a talk show called ‘Pallin’ Around,’ ” Ayers said in his opening comments, which got laughs. Then, looking around at the standing-room-only crowd, he added: “Had it not been for the recent presidential campaign, there would be 22 of you here.”

That may actually be a little high. Even in Berkeley I doubt he would have generated more interest beyond a few professors who remembered him from the glory days.

Ayers is in California on a tour to promote a new book on race relations that he wrote with his wife, Bernardine Dohrn, a fellow former leader in the underground movement who is now a Chicago lawyer and law professor. Ayers said he plans to return to the Bay Area with Dohrn later this month to speak before the Middle East Children’s Alliance in Berkeley.

His appearance at St. Mary’s “Against the Grain” lecture series to explore the topic of “Trudging Toward Freedom” drew sharp criticism from conservative and religious groups.

According to the report, some of those angered by Ayers’ appearance adopted the typical lefty tactic of disrupting his speech. It’s stupid when lefties do it and stupid here as well, regardless of how odious the speaker is.

Ayers delivered a wide-ranging address on social justice and education, but his effort outraged some 150 protesters – most marched outside, and others sat in the audience and occasionally disrupted his speech with yelling before they were escorted away.

“I don’t know what they’re protesting actually, but if the last few months are any indication, they’re protesting a cartoon character that shares my name and likeness, but it’s not me,” he told The Chronicle before his speech, adding that the McCain-Palin campaign had attempted to turn him into a “monster.”

Historical revisionism at its best. Whatever. Ayers will always be able to fool the useful idiots who simply want to believe the worst about America. Generally these are the ones who believe that capitalism is the literal incarnation of evil and hate America for being the nation most identified with it. To these people, Ayers is a hero for attacking the heart (as they see it) of the hated enemy.

To those who live in reality, however, Ayers is nothing more than a petty man of little worth and even less integrity. He is the egotistical embodiment of the Boomers’ worst aspects, and a failed terrorist to boot. He may enjoy some renewed interest amongst the useful idiots, but he’ll never have any political worth other than being a liability.

Certainly Bill Ayers should worship the ground that Obama treads upon. Absent his Presidency, Ayers would have no public life whatsoever.

And We’re Live

Bear with us the next few days as we get this beauty up to speed.

We’ll be doing comment moderation for a couple of days.  It’s obviously something I don’t want to do for more than that.  It slows and kills discussion.

We’ll also be trying different colors, themes,  etc. as we go along.  The one thing that you can count on is us fiddling with it until we get it just right.

Your comments, critiques and suggestions are welcomed and appreciated.

I’m excited about this and look forward to playing with it.

The old QandO blog is found at the sidebar under “previous version” if you’re still having a conversation there.


Style Evolves

Don’t panic.

I know that many of you are frightened and confused by change, or by The New.  But, the old software I wrote back in 2004 to run QandO has run its course.


Like this motorcyclist's stoppie, the old QandO software is about to come to a sudden end. Hopefully with less road rash.

I wouldn’t rate it a FAIL, like the poor lad’s stoppie FAIL picture here, but, while it may have been OK at the time, the world has moved along, and frankly, I’ve never had time to really keep the software up to date.  Oh, I had plans, but I never had the time to carry them out.

So, in honor of the Obama Era of Change, we’re implementing Change at QandO.  We’re switching over to WordPress as the platform for the Blog.

Now, I’m not sure it will look like this for long.  I basically stole the template I built for my motorcycle blog and transferred it over.  I’m fiddling around with Artisteer for a new template for QandO, but this should at least get us started.

Unlike me, WordPress has hundreds of people all over the world tweaking it, building plugins for it and whatnot, so it has some advanced features.

You won’t notice much of a difference, except that the incidence of comment spam will pretty much disappear.  You will need to have your first comment approved, after which you can comment all you want, but this is another anti-spam measure, to keep the riff-raff out.

You can also subscribe to the blog by creating a subscriber account on the comment pages, and get updated whenever the blog is updated.

I think the move to WordPress will have a lot of advantages for everyone, and I hope you enjoy the new features, such as a WYSIWYG comment editor, with spell checking.

Soon, you’ll forget about the old site.  Which, by the way, is still going to be here, so the old content will not disappear.  You can access the previous version via the link on the sidebar.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the new QandO.