Melanie Morgan – week’s dumbest remark..

“You’d look great in a burqa,”

Melanie Morgan, who suggested that a New York Times editor be killed in a gaschamber for treason for reporting on the US government spying on Americans — to Naomi Wolf, on Chris Matthews Hardball, when Wolf suggested that the Iraq war had nothing to do with terrorism and more to do with the political agenda of the Bush administration and its desire to dismantle the constitution….

Tip to Naomi: In a crude forum, crude people win.

Police State Chronicles: the great conman in charge…

James Bovard at the Future of Freedom Foundation asks, do we owe the government anything?

“Police protection

Do citizens owe a vast debt to the state for keeping the peace? Many big-city police departments have effectively abandoned serious efforts to solve robberies and other cases of nonlethal violence; the District of Columbia police, for instance, make arrests in fewer than 10 percent of burglaries and robberies. But D.C. police have set records for arresting citizens detected drinking alcohol on their front porches. They have also been valiant in cracking down on drivers with unfastened seatbelts.

Insofar as government prohibits people from owning or carrying weapons for self-defense, it is scant consolation that a policeman arrives after the crime to chalk off the body. There are more than twice as many private security guards as uniformed policemen in the United States. More citizens than ever before are living in gated communities or relying on home alarm systems. Private citizens use guns to defend themselves more than 2 million times a year, according to Florida State University criminologist Gary Kleck. After comparing the effects of more people carrying guns with other popular reforms, economist John Lott concluded that “of all the methods studied so far by economists, the carrying of concealed handguns appears to be the most cost-effective method for reducing crime.”


Military defense
The one area in which it is most plausible that government could provide a unique service is national defense. However, if a government busies itself making enemies, and then praises itself for pledging to protect citizens from the enemies it makes, there is less than a transcendent benefit. The war in Iraq will very likely cost Americans more than a trillion dollars — a high price for Bush’s May 1, 2003, victory strut aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln.

What have politicians given to the citizenry that they did not originally take from them? This is the bottom line that must permeate all thinking about the “goods” or “services” that government “provides” to the citizenry. In reality, in the vast majority of cases, politicians give back far less in value than they take. The more the government takes, the less the citizen owes to the government.

Insofar as the government takes from the citizen more than it renders to the citizen, the citizen owes the state the same contempt that he would have for any other con artist….”

Housing bubble trouble….

Thanks to Rob Dawg at Exurban Nation for this:

DEED TRADE MY HOUSE NOW

Reply to: hous-393348572@craigslist.org
Date: 2007-08-09, 6:38PM PDT

TERMS WOULD BE:
If you have real estate that appraises today for $90,000 to $105,000. You give me your real estate straight out withOUT me owing you or anyone any cash at anytime. Your Deed would be an even exchange for my Deed.
IN TRADE My house:
The current assumable loan on my home is $298,000 and it is a neg am. loan @ 7%. It’s appraised value today according to the county tax assessor is $280,000. This house appraised at $383,000.00 when I bought it brand new 2 years ago this month. Plus, There is a 2nd on this house for $36,000. not assumable. Or you could negoiate a short sale with my lender. This house will easliy be a million dollar home in 20 years! In 7 years it should come back at $450 $500 when they complete building the stores gas stations and freeway access! I lost my job a year into it and can’t make the payments …… TRADE NOW! See pics of home below.

992 LAKEPORT WAY at Hyway 70 google map yahoo map
Location: 992 lakeport way 95961 plumas lake ca
it’s NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID: 393348572
—–

Insane. To think this idjit spent the time to make the add. He’ll trade his $280k house for $105k if you assume his $298k loan and pay off his $36k loan. That’s $141,000 upfront and $298,000 in debt, $439,000 for something worth maybe $220,000 and eventually $160,000.
—–
Comment:

And you think our problems are all about who is in power….

Sure – there’s the larcenous bunch at the top who’ve turned the economy into a gambling den…but look at what they’re working with…

Lila, the demon

Protoplasm (a dominionist for Tom Tancredo)

has me listed both under Demon Alert and Terrorist Watch. I add them to my list of epithets — nothing compares, of course, to the endearments I’ve got from my former countrymen — mostly unprintable, but I forgive them, since I know they are trying to make themselves more acceptable to society at large by pasting Bush-Cheney stickers on their windshields and telling themselves, well those Muslims had it coming to them anyway, what with Musharraf, the LOC and what not…….

“Barely readable” and “borderline hysteric” are the milder ones.

People like ideological purity and camp following. Anyone who just tries to call it as she sees it makes them uncomfortable because no one is willing to relinquish the security of a predetermined party line. If they did, even for a moment, they might see something right in the enemy. And something wrong in themselves. They might find their friends more dangerous than their foes. They might – goddess forbid – change their mind about something…..or their hearts. And there is nothing people resist more than change….

Libertarian Revolution: Seceding from the American Empire….

From “Bye, Bye Miss American Empire,” by Bill Kauffman at Orion Magazine

“THE CRIMES AND FOLLIES OF THE Bush-Cheney administration have boosted secessionists’ fortunes, but when Bush-Cheney, like all things, passes, the case for radical devolution loses none of its cogency. The problem with the U.S. is one of scale, and it cannot be solved by electing new or different or better people to public offices. As Donald Livingston says, “The public corporation known as the United States has simply grown too large for the purposes of self-government, in the same way that a committee of three hundred people would be too large for the purposes of a committee. There needs to be a public debate on the out-of-scale character of the regime and what can be done about it.”

The average congressional district now contains 647,000 persons. And this is the “people’s house,” thought by the Founders to be the most responsive and grassroots of federal institutions. How is anything like representative government possible on such an enormous and impersonal scale?

Decentralizing power would have the additional virtue of localizing those coalition-splitters known as “social issues.” Case in point: When one of the southern delegates at the Burlington convention calls abortion a heinous crime, I sit back to watch the fireworks. They are doused in the fresh waters of federalism. There is general agreement on a mind-your-own-damn-business principle. If Marin County wants to serve joints with school lunches and Tupelo, Mississippi, wants the Ten Commandments in the classroom, well, that’s up to the people of Marin and Tupelo. Ain’t none of my business. Yours, either.

Let Utah be Utah, and let San Francisco be San Francisco. The policy will drive busybodies mad with frustration, but for the rest of us, it just might be the beginning of tolerance.

There is no reason why this kind of hands-off mutuality requires secession—they didn’t used to call the U.S. system “federalism” for nothing—but the urge to intervene is so irresistible to Dobsonian conservatives and Clintonian liberals that states and cities and towns have been deprived of the right to make their own laws, shaped by local circumstances, on such matters as the legality of marijuana and abortion and the proper way (if any) to define marriage. Does anyone really think that the Christian Right or feminist left will ever agree to denationalize such issues and trust local people to make their own laws?

Trust local people. That, really, is the soul of the case for secession. Bringing it all back home, as a small-town Minnesota boy who took the name Bob Dylan once wrote. For home is where secession must be rooted. Ideology of any sort is not so much a dead end as it is a road without end that carries the enthusiast far from any place resembling home. It unmoors him, it leaves her without anchorage, quick to blame societal ills on outsiders, on dark alien forces. I know: we live in the seventh year of the bloody and imperial Bush Octennium. If Dick Cheney isn’t a dark alien force I don’t know what is. But a healthy secessionist movement must be founded in love: love of a particular place, its people (of all ethnicities and colors), its culture, its language and books and music and baseball teams and, yes, its beer and flowers and punk rock clubs.

Maybe the Burlington conference was a sideshow, an amusing tour of the more outré precincts of American politics. Or maybe it was a harbinger.

Think what you will. This is radicalism deep-dyed in the American grain. “The military-industrial-energy-media complex is running an empire on the ruins of the republic,” says Rob Williams, who does not think that merely putting Democratic hands on the levers of power will solve anything. It’s the levers themselves that have to be removed.

Would the union miss Vermont? Sure. But as a young John Quincy Adams said, “I love the Union as I love my wife. But if my wife should ask for and insist upon a separation, she should have it, though it broke my heart.”

Besides, Vermont’s not going anywhere. Even if she were to secede, the Green Mountains will not be moved, the sap will still flow, the novels of Howard Frank Mosher and Dorothy Canfield Fisher will remain; hell, even Ben & Jerry’s will keep dishing it out. But why shouldn’t Vermonters run Vermont? Why should, say, Senator Hillary Clinton or Senator John McCain or Speaker Nancy Pelosi or President George W. Bush have even a whisper of a say in how Vermont orders her affairs?

“I want to leave my country,” says Kirk Sale, “without leaving my home.” That line packs a jolt, at least for this Little American. My home comes first. Yet I also want my country. I’m not sure what I think about leaving the U.S.A. But isn’t it time that we gave the matter some thought?”