Saturday, July 10, 2004

Divide and Conquer

BostonHerald: Vets fume over Quincy smoke ban plan

Impressive strategery here: first get it banned in public spaces, such as bars and restaurants, then use the defeated as soldiers to attack private clubs. It reminds me of schoolyard bullies using their newly-vanquished toadies to torment the remaining victims.

Smoking bans, in both public and private places, are a bad idea. They're based on dubious statistics, and threaten basic liberties like freedom of association and control of private property. And when you scratch away the patina of the public health arguement, the real force behind the anti-smoking crusade is "aesthetic bigotry" - that fashionable, sophisticated people are entitled to a live in a world that caters exclusively to their tastes and prejudices.

Michigan's state senate is now considering a bill (S-186) to ban smoking in bars and restaurants. May it die a swift death.

Friday, July 09, 2004

The Mansions of the Lord

During the Gipper's funeral at the National Cathedral, there
was a moment - punctuated by this music by Nick Glennie-Smith - at which I really broke down and wept:

NPR : Reagan Services's 'Mansions of the Lord'

With the lyrics by Randall Wallace:

To fallen soldiers let us sing
Where no rockets fly nor bullets wing
Our broken brothers let us bring
To the Mansions of the Lord

No more bleeding, no more fight
No prayers pleading through the night
Just divine embrace, eternal light
To the Mansions of the Lord.

Where no mothers cry and no children weep
We will stand and guard though the angels sleep
Through the ages safely keep
The Mansions of the Lord.

I miss Ronald Reagan very, very much.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

A Wave of Flag Desecration?

Desecrated Flag slated to be burned; vandals strike again

We'll keep an eye on this over the next few weeks...
Hillary tells SF fans that those that have benefitted in excess from the tax cuts will have this benefit taken away for the "common good":

Yahoo! News - San Francisco Gives Clintons Warm Welcome

This is the Left's view of wealth: that the rich just hoard it, counting and recounting it like Scrooge McDuck. To paraphrase scripture, if we could show that just one righteous man used his tax cut to expand his business and give someone a job, would they spare all from their fire and brimstone?

I've got a better idea: how about a program where people could volunteer to increase their tax bracket to seventy or ninety percent? So, Hil, if you feel that passionate about it...

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Why a Francocentric world is good thing to avoid:

WSJ OpinionJournal - Sudan: The alternative to U.S. "unilateralism" and "hegemony" is catastrophe

To say nothing of the European neglect of Rwanda and Yugoslavia. What level of cataclysm does it take for the world to appreciate the cyncism of the old continental powers?
The "Yellowcake Story" turns out to a little more complicated than just a scam on the US intelligence services:

The New York Times > Intelligence backs claim Iraq tried to buy uranium

Combined with the little-publicized conclusion of the Kay report, namely that WMD programs were in place and active, the case against Iraq on WMD is stronger than the common folklore suggests.