Jefferson

Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties: 1. Those who fear and distrust the people, and wish to draw all powers from them into the hands of the higher classes. 2. Those who identify themselves with the people, have confidence in them, cherish and consider them as the most honest and safe, although not the most wise depositary of the public interests. In every country these two parties exist, and in every one where they are free to think, speak, and write, they will declare themselves. Call them, therefore, Liberals and Serviles, Jacobins and Ultras, Whigs and Tories, Republicans and Federalists, Aristocrats and Democrats, or by whatever name you please, they are the same parties still and pursue the same object. The last one of Aristocrats and Democrats is the true one expressing the essence of all." --Thomas Jefferson to Henry Lee, 1824. ME 16:73That.  

 

How Cliches Can Scratch Your Back

When I was three, a cat jumped off the roof of a screened deck onto my back as I was walking up the stairs to the deck. The cat shredded my shirt and turned my back to hamburger. I'll get back to that.

You know this cliché:  "What goes up must come down."

It's true. Even satellites and space stations crash back to earth. And the long distance probes like Voyager will eventually crash into some planet or start.

What goes up comes down. And it breaks apart on re-entry.

Here's another cliché: "The bigger they are, the harder they fall."

Also true. Most clichés are true. In fact, "cliché" means "undeniable truth."

I just made that up. I have no idea.

But if a cliché were totally wrong, it would stop being a cliché. So clichés have some truth in them. Especially about things that go up come down.

With that law of reality in mind, look a this chart from the Federal Reserve:

US Government Debt

 

I was born in 1963. October 5, to be exact. John F. Kennedy was President and would remain so for another 48 days. US government debt was, more or less, zero.

The debt line rose a bit through 60s, a bit more through 70s, especially during the Carter years. It grew a lot in the 1980s and 1990s, though it took a bit of dive in the late 1990s. Probably because I got out of the Navy in December 1994.  I'll take credit for that.

Then, after 9/11, debt skyrocketed. Until 2008.

In 2008, US government debt rose almost vertically. It went straight up. Straight up.

From 1955 to 2001, time moved faster than the debt moved up. Since 2001, debt moved up fast than time moved forward.

Since 2008, debt's rocket so fast time seemed to stand still.

So did the US GDP.

When people like Ted Cruz talk for 20 hours, they're not just talking about Obamacare. And they're not advancing their careers.

They're explaining clichés.

What goes up must come down.

The bigger they are, the harder they fall.

Those clichés are true. I learned how true the were in 1967 when that white cat jumped off Spook and Bev Rustige's covered deck onto my back. The cat fell about 20 feet. I still remember Bev rubbing alcohol on my back with a cotton ball. It burned like hell. My shirt was ruined. I was crying. Screaming.

Those clichés apply to people, countries, and economies. And white cats.

That vertical line won't go horizontal. It'll come back down.  At some point, it will fall swiftly back to meet the red line.

Not to be hyperbolic, but when that happens, people will die in big numbers. People will die of disease and starvation. They'll die of violence because government will collapse.

When the blue line meets the red line, Harvard professors won't survive--people with guns and food will.

 

That's what Ted Cruz and Mike Lee were talking about. They didn't use scary scenarios like people dying by the millions or white cats clawing the shit out of a 3-year-old's back, but that's what they were talking about.

No, we didn't win the shutdown. But no one noticed the shutdown. It didn't really affect anyone.

When the blue line crashes, everyone will shudder. And many will die.

And that's why the Tea Party exists.

Read Quote of Jim Durbin's answer to Tea Party (politics): What is it like to be a Tea Party Republican? on Quora

 

How Roy Blunt Failed Missouri Today

The Republican primary for US Senate in 2016 will actually be a battle for an empty seat. Roy Blunt effectively abdicated his throne today. This morning, I showed where Missouri stands on Obamacare.

I've called, written, and tweeted to Roy Blunt. So have thousands of other Missourians. And so have Americans across the country.

I'm not surprised that Roy Blunt failed to publicly join Ted Cruz's filibuster. That kind of daring commitment to principle just isn't in his character. He wouldn't get anything out of it.

I am a little shocked that Blunt became only the third Republican Senator to publicly side with Harry Reid.

No one should be shocked that Blunt shamefully talked like a weasel about his decision to oppose Ted Cruz's strategy to defund Obamacare. Here, Blunt plagiarizes his leader, Mitch McConnell:

This week, I'll continue that fight by supporting the House-passed continuing resolution, which defunds ObamaCare and keeps the government open without increasing federal spending. I will vote to begin debate on this bill and move to final passage on the House-passed CR.

Weasel words. Clever. Slick. Insincere. Weak.

Blunt knows, as do you, that his vote against the final Senate bill is worth less than his promises to do everything in his power to stop Obamacare. I'd have more respect for him if came out and said, "I stick my neck out for nobody."

Instead, Blunt said he would "oppose efforts" by Harry Reid to remove the defunding language from the bill.

Really, Senator? How will you oppose? With a terse statement from the floor? Maybe with some pithy, digging tweets in between calls to happy donors?

Blunt's post-cloture opposition to Reid's efforts will be about as meaningful as my opposition to tomorrow's weather.

  • By voting for cloture, Roy Blunt will vote to give Harry Reid the power to strip Obamacare defund language from the continuing resolution.
  • By voting for cloture, Roy Blunt will put Obamacare on the fast-track to wrecking the American healthcare system.
  • By voting for cloture, Roy Blunt will never again be able to say, "I did everything in my power as a citizen and a Senator to stop this monstrosity."

Now, along with Mitch McConnell and John Cornyn, Senator Roy Blunt forms a crusty club of warped old men who sit in the Senate and plot ways to increase their own power--even at the expense of yours.

At least, Roy has two friends.

 

What You Can Do:

How Ann Wagner Should Commit to Defunding Obamacare

The House GOP leadership has a problem. The conservative base wants Boehner to use the continuing resolution to force a showdown over Obamacare. Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, Sean Hannity, and millions of grassroots activists want the GOP to block passage of a continuing resolution because it funds the unpopular healthcare law.

Boehner doesn't want to. He's afraid that shutting down the government will hurt Republicans in the 2014 election.

Boehner could be right. If the House blocked the continuing resolution and later caved, voters would likely punish the GOP. But by committing now to defunding Obamacare, and following through on their commitment, the House would force Obama and the Democrats to negotiate.

Obama knows that politicians are fickle. They want the easy way out. We all do. Obama believes that the Republicans would cave before he'd be forced to negotiate. But Republicans like Representative Ann Wagner (R-MO) could change Obama's mind simply by signing the Mark Meadows letter vowing to vote against any bill that funds Obamacare.

By committing now, in writing, to blocking funding for Obamacare, the Democrats would know that reneging on an oath would be career suicide for Republicans. Sure, Wagner could sign the letter and later vote for funding bill. But she'd destroy her credibility. Voters would know even her sworn oath is meaningless. I know Ann. I like her. And I'm confident she wouldn't do that. She wouldn't renege on a signed commitment. I don't believe she'd renege on a verbal commitment, but words are flexible. Signatures aren't.

If a majority of House Republicans swear to stop Obamacare now, once they act on their promise, Obama will have to negotiate. Republicans can list 5 demands before funding the government. They can negotiate away two or three of them, so long as Obamacare isn't one.

Yes, it's brinkmanship. It's hardball. It's tough. Forcing a rival to negotiate always is.

It's also noble and courageous.

In 2014, voters will punish the loser. If the GOP caves in the face of danger, it will be the loser by default. If conservative voters believe the GOP House majority squandered its mandate, 2014 primaries could be difficult on incumbents.

Visit Rep. Wagner's Ballwin, MO office and politely ask her to sign the Meadows letter. Ask her to commit to forcing a negotiation and defunding Obamacare now. By taking your time to actually visit her office, you'll demonstrate your commitment.

Her office:

301 Sovereign Ct.
Suite 201
Ballwin, MO 63011

hours: M-F 9-5:00pm

San Francisco Is The Liberal Dream

I’m in San Francisco this week. I’m taking notes.

I just walked past a carbon-copy of my little doggy Stella guarding her homeless master who was sleeping on the stoop of a building at 8th and Mission.  They were the first two people on the street who weren't smoking dope.

March 2013 119

Then it dawned on me. In San Francisco, there is no opportunity for people at the bottom to climb up to the top. And there's little hope for anyone who reaches a certain age (say 18) and decides then they want to make something of themselves. 

So the Others get weed, and if they're lucky a fiercely loyal little dog to ward off predators. 

This is the liberal dream. Money, culture, and power for the elite; free drugs for the rest. 

In other words, this is the most depressing city I've ever seen up close. A bifurcated dissection of the American Dream. Two kinds of prices: super premium and free. Two kinds of cars: super luxury and salvage. Two kinds of people: Masters of the Universe and bums. 

The liberals here have climbed the ladder, dragged it up to the roof, and burned the sonofabitch. “Ain't nobody challengin’ my status!” They've eliminated competition from below. 

Yeah, I know there's other parts of town, but downtown defines a city. Downtown St. Louis is a study in denial. What was once America's largest small town is now America's smallest old industrial Big City.

San Francisco is the liberal dream. Super rich and gutter poor with nothing in between and no way to cross chasm.

Kind of like the old Soviet Union.

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Palm Sunday Snowstorm of 2013

Here's what Twitterdom is saying about the Palm Sunday Snowstorm:

 

 

 

Go Bills

SLU Billikens I'm not the biggest NCAA basketball fan in the world, but the SLU Billikens rev up my heart whenever they make a push in the tournament.

It's heartwarming to see all the love spilling over from Mizzou fans to the Bills, as Bernie Miklasz documents in a post today.

Anyway, I thought I'd present the Twitter responses to my question. There's a good mix here ... some humor, some bitterness and some harmless "hater" stuff too. As well as some anti-Kansas sentiment and a shot at Ole Miss hot dog Marshall Henderson. I even heard from a couple of Illinois fans, including the mayor of Jacksonville, Ill.

Wouldn't you love to see the Bills drive into the final four? And while I'm asking questions, if you're a Mizzou fan, have you adopted the Billikens?