Tuesday, June 29, 2010

St Louis Tea Party BUYcotts Cards v Arizona Game

The St Louis Tea Party showed up in force at Tuesday night's Cardinals vs Arizona Diamondbacks game. We were there to support Arizona—we waved Arizona state flags—while cheering for our Cards. Pujols was on fire. He homered twice and doubled driving in five runs in the 8-0 shutout.

Other bloggers and Tea Party supporters who were there include:
Thanks to KSDK Channel 5 for covering us! And a special thanks to Tony LaRussa for standing up for the first amendment and welcoming us.

We'll be doing similar events through the summer so let us know if you're interested!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Russ Carnahan's Door is Always Open

This past Saturday, Russ Carnahan (D-MO) spoke briefly at the St Louis County Library on Weber Rd before leaving through the back door in the middle of the meeting. He took no questions and offered only pablum and platitudes to his constituents.

There are alternatives to Carnahan. Ed Martin is the GOP favorite and Edward Crim is one of Carnahan's Democrat primary challengers. The Missouri primary election is August 3rd.

Update: Welcome Red Staters and thanks to Brian for link!

Gina Loudon's Radio Show Begins This Afternoon

Dr. Gina Loudon's drive time radio show on Truth Talk 630AM begins this afternoon at 4PM. Here's more from the press announcement:
Crawford Broadcasting Company announces the launch of a new Conservative Christian Talk Station hitting the airwaves on June 28, 2010. The Nationally acclaimed and most listenened to Christian Talk Radio Host in all of Michigan, Bob Dutko will head up the new talent at Truth Talk 630. Bob's show is M-F, 12-4 pm.

Dr. Gina Loudon will join Truth Talk as their new PM Drive host, M-F, 4-6. Her show will focus on politics, faith in action, life design, travel and effective Christian living. This will also be the new home of her always provocative "Political A-List". Bob and Gina join other greats to come in the all new line up for Truth Talk’s launch happening on June 28. The station has the largest daytime signal of any station in St. Louis, covering half of Missouri, half of Illinois, with the tips on Kentucky and Indiana (see Coverage Map).
If you're outside the listening area or would like to follow the show more closely, there's a Dr. Gina Show facebook page and a Twitter feed for The Dr. Gina Show. Congratulations, Gina!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pictures from Freedom Fights

I Heard the People Say sponsored a candidate forum in St Charles this afternoon. Freedom Fights saw politicians from across the state (though mainly those based in the St Louis area) take to a boxing ring for a political forum. Booths for candidates and causes lined the perimeter.

Cross Coverage:

May Candidate Forum and Today's Freedom Fights

In May I shot some video at a candidate forum for the four GOP candidates running for state rep in Missouri's 97th House District. Here are the opening statements from those candidate: Chris Brown, Gary Fuhr, Jerry Little, and Bill Zobrist. I will be posting more video from that event as time permits.

I believe that all four of these candidates will be at this afternoon's Freedom Fights in St. Charles, MO. The Freedom Fights start at high noon today. Candidates will face each other in a boxing ring; however, they are only expect to exchange verbal barbs and witticisms. ATraditionalLifeLived.com will be live streaming from the Freedom Fights.

Mankiw on Tax Cuts

Greg Mankiw on the crisis economic policies of the past couple years [emphasis added]:
The administration's second assumption, meanwhile, is a matter of academic theories about the sizes of the relevant economic multipliers. Textbook Keynesian economics tells us that government-purchases multipliers are larger than tax-cut multipliers. And, as we have seen, the Obama administration's economic team consulted these standard models in deciding that spending would be significantly more effective than tax cuts.

But a great deal of recent economic evidence calls that conclusion into question. In an ironic twist, one key piece comes from Christina Romer, who is now chair of Obama's Council of Economic Advisers. About six months before she took the job, Romer teamed up with her husband and fellow Berkeley economist David Romer to write a paper ("The Macroeconomic Effects of Tax Changes") that sought to measure the influence of tax policy on GDP. Crucial to the Romers' method was their effort to identify changes in tax policy made during times of relative economic stability, and driven by a desire to influence economic behavior or activity (to encourage growth, say, or reduce a deficit), rather than those changes made in response to a recession or crisis. By studying such "exogenous" tax-policy changes, the Romers could be more confident that they were in fact measuring the effects of taxes and not those of extraneous conditions.

The Romers' conclusion, which is at odds with most traditional Keynesian analysis, was that the tax multiplier was 3 — in other words, that every dollar spent on tax cuts would boost GDP by $3. This would mean that the tax multiplier is roughly three times larger than Obama's advisors assumed it was during their policy simulations.

Friday, June 25, 2010

A Case for Reprisal

The Wall Street Journal reports that Hugo Chavez's Venezuela has taken control of oil rigs owned by an American company:
Venezuela, which plans to nationalize 11 idled oil rigs owned by Helmerich & Payne Inc. (HP), said Friday it has seized control of the rigs and slammed the U.S.-based firm for refusing to renegotiate rates in 2009, when oil prices were falling.


The rigs in question have been sidelined for more than a year. Helmerich turned them off because PDVSA owes it some $43 million for work the Oklahoma firm already performed. Helmerich says it wants to be paid first before turning them back on because it doesn't aim to work for free.
An American company is owed a large sum of money by Venezuela's state run PDVSA and PDVSA decides to steal the American company's 11 oil rigs. The US Constitution provides a remedy in Article 1, Section 8:
The Congress shall have Power ... To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water
Letters of marque and reprisal have not been issued by the United States in over a hundred years. Their purpose is to right a wrong by empowering commercial vessels to capture or destroy assets owned by the party that committed the wrong. Often they've been used to create an auxiliary naval force during a war. Historically, ships operating under letters of marque have been called privateers by the country issuing the letters and pirates by those targeted.

Assuming an offshore oil rig cost about $150M, Helmerich has been wronged to the tune of about $1.7B. They may not have the resources and equipment to pursue letters of marque, but there may be an adventurous financier who does. The financier would secure letters of marque and reprisal and then offer a bounty contingent on the capture or destruction of $1.7B of Venezuelan assets (or the limits imposed by the Congress). Think of it as an X Prize for international justice.

I don't think the financier would have to be an individual. Perhaps a core group would start a non-profit which would solicit donations to fund its mission of peace through strength.

Wikipedia describes how to apply for letters of marque and reprisal; however, I think the process today would be a little different:
During the American Revolution first the state legislatures, then both the states and the Continental Congress, then after ratification of the Constitution, Congress authorized and the President signed Letters of Marque. A ship owner would send in an application stating the name, description, tonnage and force (armaments) of the vessel, the name and residence of the owner, the intended number of crew, and tendered a bond promising strict observance of the country's laws and treaties, and of international laws and customs. The commission was granted to the vessel, not to its captain, often for a limited time or specified area, and stated the enemy upon whom attacks were permitted.

What 2008 Event Caused This?

Gallup reports that conservatives hold the pole position: "Conservatives have maintained their leading position among U.S. ideological groups in the first half of 2010."

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Government Spending Kills Jobs

Rasmussen Reports that politicians and government spending cause downsizing:
Of all the myths helping to sustain the unsustainable status quo in Washington, D.C., among the most widely accepted is the belief that a politician’s seniority translates into tangible economic benefits for his or her district. In fact, this perception works hand-in-glove with another central government myth – the one about politicians being able to create private sector jobs with your tax dollars in the first place.
In fact, the research that could end up blowing these myths out of the water seems to have come about accidentally – or at least as an afterthought. Three professors at Harvard Business School – Lauren Cohen, Joshua Coval and Christopher Malloy – were examining the correlation between politically-connected firms and powerful legislative committee chairmen when they stumbled upon something “unexpected.”
What did they discover? Something free market advocates have known for years: Government spending kills jobs.
“It was an enormous surprise, at least to us, to learn that the average firm in the chairman’s state did not benefit at all from the increase in spending,” says Coval. “Indeed, the firms significantly cut physical and R&D spending, reduced employment, and experienced lower sales.”
This is only surprising if you're a Keynesian... if you do not see that paying one set of people to dig ditches and another set of people to fill them in is a variant on Bastiat's broken window fallacy.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Eminent Domain Abuse and the Kelo Decision Five Years On

The Institute for Justice takes a look at Kelo on the fifth anniversary of that Supreme Court Decision.

Petraeus to Succeed McChrystal

The AP reports: "...that President Barack Obama will name Gen. David Petraeus to succeed Gen. Stanley McChrystal as top war commander in Afghanistan." Gen. Stanley McChrystal was insubordinate. I do not think that he could command the respect of his own subordinates as needed in his leadership role if he were to remain in command, so I believe the decision to replace him was unavoidable.

Assuming the AP's source is correct, I applaud President Barack Obama's decision to replace McChrystal with Gen. David Patraeus. I've been impressed with Patraeus since reading Michael Yon's 2007 post Second Chances (note: two videos will auto-play at that link).

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Civil War? I Don't Think So

Jon Voight has penned a Dear Mr. President letter in the Washington Times:
You have brought to Arizona a civil war, once again defending the criminals and illegals, creating a meltdown for good, loyal, law-abiding citizens. Your destruction of this country may never be remedied, and we may never recover.
Arizona is being invaded, so I think "civil war" is both inaccurate and hyperbolic. The Federal Government needs to get onboard with border enforcement, but the dispute between Arizona and DC is an administrative, bureaucratic, and legal one. Let's hope and pray that it never includes gunfire or other violent exchanges and, towards that end, tone down the rhetoric.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Times Square Car Bomb Suspect Verbs "Revenge"

ABC News's report on Faisal Shahzad's guilty plea includes clear evidence that he intends to continue his war on our country by any and all means. In this quotation, he terrorizes our culture with an assault on our language by ruthlessly verbing "revenge":
'It's a war. I am part of the answer to the U.S. terrorizing the Muslim nations and the Muslim people,' he said. 'On behalf of that, I'm revenging the attack. Living in the United States, Americans only care about their people but they don't care about the people elsewhere in the world when they die.'
Yo, Faisal, go to India and learn our language! Oh, right, with multiple mandatory life sentences, your terrorism will be limited to setting the fork to the right of the plate in the prison mess hall.

Update: The AP story has been updated and "revenging" has been changed to "avenging".

Incendiary Remarks on U.S. 71

The Kansas City Star reports that an arsonist has attacked the first amendment:
He’s not the kind of guy who posts on Twitter or has a Facebook profile.
So when the 72-year-old Raytown man wanted to speak out politically, he used what he had handy: a 45-foot-long, semi-truck box trailer.
Are you a Producer or Parasite
Democrats - Party of the Parasites
He planted the trailer with its professionally painted message in his Bates County cornfield along heavily traveled U.S. 71 about an hour south of Kansas City. He wanted lots of people to see it.
They did. Including at least one with a good case of outrage, matches and a can of gas.
Don't they realize... that's libel to cause a prairie fire?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Centre Cannot Hold

Gerald Celente of TrendsResearch.com says "the entire system is collapsing."

Saturday, June 19, 2010

An Ed Martin-Russ Carnahan Debate?

Ed Martin, Republican candidate for Missouri's Third Congressional District, will accept an invitation next week to debate MO-03's current Congressman: Russ Carnahan (D-MO). Presumably, the debate is contingent on both Martin and Carnahan winning their party's primary on August 3rd.

The Rending of the European Union

Charles Moore in the Telegraph: The euro's inevitable failure will be horrendous for all of us:
The unthinkable idea that the eurozone might break up is now being thought. And the version of break up gathering ground in people's minds is not that the poor, indebted countries would fall out – they are prostrate and helpless – but that Germany would rise up like Gulliver, snap the insubstantial euro-ropes tied round its body, and walk away. Offering a foretaste, a German stockmarket website called Borsenews has now started pricing shares in Deutschmarks as well as euros.

An Empty Desk for an Empty Suit

If a cluttered desk signs a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?
— Albert Einstein

Photo credit: Getty Images via The Wall Street Journal

Persistence Pays Parasites

Cory Doctorow explains how he fell victim to a phishing scam:
Phishing isn’t (just) about finding a person who is technically naive. It’s about attacking the seemingly impregnable defenses of the technically sophisticated until you find a single, incredibly unlikely, short-lived crack in the wall.

If I hadn’t reinstalled my phone’s OS the day before. If I hadn’t been late to the cafe. If I hadn’t been primed to hear from old friends wondering if some press mention was me, having just published a lot of new work. If I hadn’t been using a browser that didn’t fully expose URLs. If I hadn’t used the same password for Twitter as I use for lots of other services. If I’d been ten minutes later to the cafe, late enough to get multiple copies of the scam at once – for the want of a nail, and so on.
Cory clicked through a shortened link from a tweet. Those are links that begin with: bit.ly, goo.gl, tinyurl.com, and too many others to list. Whenever you follow one of those, you have to confirm that the site you land on is legit before entering a username and password. Most of the time, you just end up at an interesting article and you're not prompted for your credentials, so it's not the sort of problem you run into regularly. Maybe the general solution is: alway check the link of a site before entering your username and password.

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Snakebit President

Peggy Noonan in The Wall Street Journal on ourSnakebit President:
But Mr. Obama is starting to look unlucky, and–file this under Mysteries of Leadership–that is dangerous for him because Americans get nervous when they have a snakebit president. They want presidents on whom the sun shines.

It isn't Mr. Obama's fault that an oil rig blew in the Gulf and a gusher resulted. He already had two wars and the great recession. But the lack of adequate federal government response appropriately redounds on him. In a Wall Street Journal investigation published Thursday, reporters Jeffrey Ball and Jonathan Weisman wrote the federal government at first moved quickly, but soon "faltered." "The federal government, which under the law is in charge of fighting large spills, had to make things up as it went along." It hadn't anticipated a spill this big. The first weekend in May, when water was rough, contractors hired by BP to lay boom "mostly stayed ashore," according to a local official. "Shrimpers took matters into their own hands, laying 18,000 feet of boom," compared to about 4,000 feet by BP's contractors.
The locals and those most effected by the spill brought the "can-do" attitude while the Coast Guard shutdown the crude oil sucking barges to check that they were properly equipped with life jackets and fire extinguishers. Again, it is important to understand the Practical Rules of Bureaucracy. The Federal government is employing all of them to thwart the BP oil cleanup effort in the Gulf.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

President Obama's War on Error

Alex Tabarrok comments on the President's oval office BP speech in the New York Times's Room for Debate Blog:
President Obama lost his cool last week when — sounding like the old president — he said he was looking for some “ass to kick.” He didn’t regain any lost cool in Tuesday’s oil speech, which also made him sound like his predecessor: “Make no mistake: we will fight this spill with everything we’ve got for as long it takes,” he said, emphasizing “We will make BP pay….” Call it President’s Obama’s war on error.

Chuck Purgason Interview: Full Video Coverage

I interviewed Chuck Purgason (R-MO) last Friday. We talked about his race for the US Senate in Missouri and what his campaign is doing to beat Roy Blunt (R-MO)--the favored candidate in the primary. The winner of the GOP primary will likely face Robin Carnahan (D-MO) in November. Purgason and I also talked about his experience and policies for small business, TARP and banking, bringing jobs back to the US and Missouri, education, healthcare, term limits, and regulatory reform. You can learn more about Chuck Purgason at his campaign website: www.purgasonforsenate.com.


St Louis Housewife Debra Carnahan attacks Working Mom Sarah Palin

Congressman Russ Carnahan's (D-MO) wife, Debra Carnahan, participated in a round table discussion on PBS's To the Contrary this past May (error ridden transcriptmp3 audio). In her opening remark, Mrs. Carnahan took a shot at Sarah Palin. Here's what she had to say about Palin's "frontier feminism":
I don't believe that Sarah Palin is the leader of frontier feminism. Frontier feminism was and is real. Sarah Palin is the leader of something. I'm not sure what, but I would call it snake oil.
At which point one of the other panelists politely laughs—perhaps in embarrassment at Mrs. Carnahan's odd suggestion that snake oil requires a leader. Maybe if the snake oil was spilled someone would need to lead the cleanup effort, but I digress.

If you support Sarah Palin or think Mrs. Carnahan is the one peddling snake oil, you can do your part to erode her political status by supporting either her husband's primary opponent, Edward Crim, or his likely Republican challenger come November, Ed Martin.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Ed Martin hosted a World Cup Watch Party

Ed Martin, a Republican candidate for Missouri's 3rd Congressional District, hosted a World Cup watch party this afternoon at Favazza's on The Hill.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Video Teams

The Other McCain in The American Spectator on so-called 'Hunter-Killer Teams' and the Etheridge Video:
The operative, who has been responsible for numerous undercover ('black ops') political projects, compared the two students to a military 'hunter-killer team' -- the tandem of a sniper and a spotter. The operative did not want to disclose the tactics and strategy of such projects, but said that we can expect to see more video confrontations during what Mike Flynn of BigGovernment.com predicts will be a 'long hot summer.'
Yes. It's always best to use the buddy system, but there are some videographers that fly solo.... or want you to believe they do.

Is There Enough Spending to be Cut?

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) had this great exchange with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Connolly asked the Fed Chairman: "Is there enough spending to be cut?" to which Bernanke replies: "Of course!"

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Americans Value Their First Amendment Press Freedom

Rasmussen reports that 85% Say Freedom of the Press More Important Than Helping Newspaper Industry:
Americans continues to oppose government-driven solutions for the newspaper industry’s problems in large part because of their concern that they threaten the press’ independence.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 85% of Adults believe that maintaining freedom of the press is more important than supporting the newspaper industry. Only six percent (6%) put supporting the newspaper business first.
Are the American people saying that freedom of the press should not only belong to those that own one or buy ink by the barrel, but also to each individual citizen? Now that would be truly amazing news, but the polls internals do not explore the idea of freedom of the press as an individual right.

Chuck Purgason Needs Volunteers

I've uploaded several segments from my interview with Chuck Purgason (R-MO) on Friday. Purgason is running against Roy Blunt (R-MO) in the Republican primary for the US Senate seat that is will be vacant after Kit Bond's (R-MO) retirement. Once all of the video from my interview is posted, I'll put all the segments in a YouTube playlist. Above, I've posted Purgason's response to my question about what he's doing to build his campaign for the August 3rd primary. You can find more of my interview at my YouTube channel.


Rule of the Sophists

Victor Davis Hanson at Pajama's Media on Government by the Faculty Lounge:
Ambiguity in speech, not clarity was preferred; the ability to adduce ten different points of view was always considered superior to deciding on one. Tantrums, the occasional obscenity, the knife-in-the-back memo always assumed a sort of rule that such rascality never earned a punch in the face; the art was to be as cruel as possible without resort to violence. Yet when gut-check time came to vote openly yes or no and take the consequences, most voted present by skipping out or abstaining.
Thus we are now ruled.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Chuck Purgason

I interviewed Chuck Purgason (R-MO) this afternoon at the Gateway Arch. Purgason is running for the US Senate seat that will be vacated by Kit Bond (R-MO). His main opponent in the primary is Roy Blunt (R-MO). Blunt's state-wide name recognition and leadership role in the House of Representatives (he's the Republican whip) make him the presumptive GOP nominee and a formidable opponent. There are other candidates; however, Purgason is the only candidate with significant legislative experience; therefore, he's the one best able to challenge Blunt for the nomination.

Purgason has criticized Blunt's votes in support of TARP, No Child Left Behind, and other expansions of the Federal government. State's rights (10th Amendment issues) are very important to him as is a balanced budget. Purgason said that if the Show Me State sends him to Washington, DC, he will not vote for a budget unless it is balanced.

I will be uploading video from my interview late this weekend.

What is a green job?

Washington Examiner reports billions for 'green jobs,' whatever they are:
The Labor Department is shoving money out the door for 'green jobs,' yet at the same time is admitting it doesn't know what a 'green job' is.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Overton Window

On his radio show today, Glenn Beck talked about the trailer (above) for his soon-to-be-released thriller, The Overton Window. The trailer is a dramatic reading of a poem that plays a critical part in Beck's new book. The poem is Rudyard Kipling's The Gods of the Copybook Headings:
As I pass through my incarnations in every age and race,
I make my proper prostrations to the Gods of the Market Place.
Peering through reverent fingers I watch them flourish and fall,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings, I notice, outlast them all.

We were living in trees when they met us. They showed us each in turn
That Water would certainly wet us, as Fire would certainly burn:
But we found them lacking in Uplift, Vision and Breadth of Mind,
So we left them to teach the Gorillas while we followed the March of Mankind.

We moved as the Spirit listed. They never altered their pace,
Being neither cloud nor wind-borne like the Gods of the Market Place,
But they always caught up with our progress, and presently word would come
That a tribe had been wiped off its icefield, or the lights had gone out in Rome.

With the Hopes that our World is built on they were utterly out of touch,
They denied that the Moon was Stilton; they denied she was even Dutch;
They denied that Wishes were Horses; they denied that a Pig had Wings;
So we worshipped the Gods of the Market Who promised these beautiful things.

When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "Stick to the Devil you know."

On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life
(Which started by loving our neighbour and ended by loving his wife)
Till our women had no more children and the men lost reason and faith,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "The Wages of Sin is Death."

In the Carboniferous Epoch we were promised abundance for all,
By robbing selected Peter to pay for collective Paul;
But, though we had plenty of money, there was nothing our money could buy,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: "If you don't work you die."

Then the Gods of the Market tumbled, and their smooth-tongued wizards withdrew
And the hearts of the meanest were humbled and began to believe it was true
That All is not Gold that Glitters, and Two and Two make Four
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings limped up to explain it once more.

As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man
There are only four things certain since Social Progress began.
That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire,
And the burnt Fool's bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire;

And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins,
As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn,
The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!

Glenn Beck and the Road to Serfdom

A day after Glenn Beck recommended Friedrich von Hayek's The Road to Serfdom, it's sold out (h/t: Instapundit). Luckily, there are a couple of alternatives available for those too impatient to wait. Sharp Elbows (a conservative blog for the A. D. D. generation) will be glad to know that there's a comic book edition (h/t: again Instapundit). Reader's Digest published a shortened version of Hayek's masterpiece and that version is available online as a PDF. Interestingly, Amazon not only has the "definitive edition" ranked #1 in books, but they have it in stock, in hardback, and downloadable for Kindle. I suppose they became the world's largest book store by squirreling away copies of what the people want before the people know they want it.

That said, I will caution readers eagerly awaiting the arrival of this great book, that it is not an easy read. I've read it twice. The first time, I didn't understand it. Hayek's formal arguments leverage a lot of classical philosophy that I was not familiar with. Before re-reading The Road to Serfdom, I discovered The Proceedings of the Friesian School. Friesian.com is a little difficult to navigate... I usually scroll down to "Topics and Essays" and poke around there for something to read. Between my two readings of The Road to Serfdom, I read the Friesian essays on Ancient Greek Philosophy and I believe this made Hayek's book much more accessible the second time. If you need a break from philosophy and economics, I recommend the essay on The Practical Rules of Bureaucracy.

As Glenn Beck would surely agree: Welcome to our autodidactic world!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Bill Corrigan calls out Charlie Dooley's Self-Dealing with Public Funds

KMOX reports that County Executive Ignores Questioning On Casino Poll:
St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley is ignoring questions about a poll, paid for with taxpayer dollars.

It asked about a potential casino along the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers in north county. The poll only included registered voters and divided their responses by political party.

The County Executive used the results to decide against supporting a new casino.

Republican challenger Bill Corrigan issued a news release, saying the poll 'breaches public trust' and calling on Dooley to 'immediately reimburse the citizens on St. Louis County for this political poll.'

Corrigan also cites the polling of the persuasiveness of messages and questions on the health of the economy.

KMOX attempted to ask Dooley about the poll after Tuesday's meeting of the County Council. He kept his head down and walked through the chambers, the hallway and to the elevator without responding to a KMOX reporter.

The survey's cost was $11,600.
The Post Dispatch's Political Fix has details about why Corrigan wants Dooley’s campaign to pay for county casino poll:
Corrigan’s statement called the poll political because it:

> Excluded non voters.

> Gave poll results by political party.

> Asked respondents their opinion of economic conditions.

> Asked for reaction to messages.

> Was conducted a few months before an election.


The poll found that 58 percent of the respondents opposed a casino along the Mississippi River north of Interstate 270 in Spanish Lake when first asked about it and 53 percent did after being asked about various issues relating the project. The poll said 37 percent favored the casino when first asked and 44 percent favored it hearing about the issues. Dooley cited the poll as a reason to oppose a Spanish Lake casino.
If you'd like to do something about the fiscal mismanagement of St Louis County government, please consider supporting Bill Corrigan's campaign.

Poetic Justice

Dorothy Rabinowitz opines in The Wall Street Journal about the alien in the White House:
A great part of America now understands that this president's sense of identification lies elsewhere, and is in profound ways unlike theirs. He is hard put to sound convincingly like the leader of the nation, because he is, at heart and by instinct, the voice mainly of his ideological class. He is the alien in the White House, a matter having nothing to do with delusions about his birthplace cherished by the demented fringe.
I've had this sense, too, and it reminds me of a poem that I had to memorize in the eighth grade. Here is Sir Walter Scott's The Patriot:
Breathes there the man, with soul so dead,
Who ne'er to himself hath said,
"This is my own, my native land!"
Whose heart hath ne'er within him burned,
As home his footsteps he hath turned,
From wandering on a foreign strand?
If such there breathe, go, mark him well;
For him no minstrel's raptures swell;
High though his titles, proud his name,
Boundless his wealth as wish could claim;
Despite these titles, power, and pelf,
The wretch, concentred all in self,
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down
To the vile dust, from whence he sprung,
Unwept, unhonoured, and unsung.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Congratulations Jim Hoft!!!

The Gateway Pundit, Jim Hoft is #2 in Right Wing News's 40 Best Conservative Blogs of 2010! I don't know how they overlooked this blog their rankings when the photographic evidence is clear: Jim Hoft takes direction from me.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Reflections on the First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Clearly, we have some more grievances that needed to be redressed.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Paul Curtman Literature Bomb

Saturday afternoon Paul Curtman organized a literature bomb in Missouri's 105th district. Curtman is the GOP candidate who will be facing Democrat incumbent Michael Frame in November's general election. Luckily the rain held-off and Curtman and his 60+ volunteers were able to distribute about 4,000 flyers in and around Pacific, MO.

The Second Verse

Friday, June 4, 2010

Remembering Marine Cpl. Jacob C. Leicht

The AP reported that the one thousandth KIA of the war in Afghanistan occurred a few days before Memorial Day:
The 1,000th American serviceman killed in Afghanistan was born on the Fourth of July. He died several days before Americans honor fallen troops on Memorial Day.

Marine Cpl. Jacob C. Leicht was killed Thursday when he stepped on a land mine in Helmand province that ripped off his right arm. It was the 24-year-old Texan's second deployment overseas.

Leicht had begged to return to the battlefield after a bomb took out his Humvee in Iraq. He spent two painful years recovering from face and leg injuries, all the while pining for combat in letters from his hospital bed.

He finally got back to the front lines, but was killed less than a month into the tour of duty he desperately wanted.

"He said he always wanted to die for his country and be remembered," said Jesse Leicht, his younger brother. "He didn't want to die having a heart attack or just being an old man. He wanted to die for something."
I paused there as I was reminded me of another man who wished to die in his boots: Robert Louis Stevenson. A few years ago I bought a copy of Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses. It's an amazing book for young children  learning to use their imagination as they also learn to read. Here's a poem to remember Marine Cpl. Jacob Leicht by:

Dear Uncle Jim, this garden ground,
That now you smoke your pipe around,
Has seen immortal actions done
And valiant battles lost and won.

Here we had best on tip-toe tread,
While I for safety march ahead,
For this is that enchanted ground
Where all who loiter slumber sound.

Here is the sea, here is the sand,
Here is simple Shepherd’s Land,
Here are the fairy hollyhocks,
And there are Ali Baba’s rocks.

But yonder, see! apart and high,
Frozen Siberia lies; where I,
With Robert Bruce and William Tell,
Was bound by an enchanter’s spell.

There, then, a while in chains we lay,
In wintry dungeons, far from day;
But ris’n at length, with might and main,
Our iron fetters burst in twain.

Then all the horns were blown in town;
And, to the ramparts clanging down,
All the giants leaped to horse
And charged behind us through the gorse.

On we rode, the others and I,
Over the mountains blue, and by
The Silver River, the sounding sea,
And the robber woods of Tartary.

A thousand miles we galloped fast,
And down the witches’ lane we passed,
And rode amain, with brandished sword,
Up to the middle, through the ford.

Last we drew rein—a weary three—
Upon the lawn, in time for tea,
And from our steeds alighted down
Before the gates of Babylon.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Public Debt Financing Requirements for 2010

Veronique de Rugy at the Mercatus Center produced the graph above of Advanced Economies' Gross Financing Needs in 2010 as a percentage of GDP. de Rugy also comments:
This amount of debt, approximately $5 trillion for the United States, is an important metric – our public financing needs represent a massive amount of credit that will not be available for use by private investors; it also quantifies our susceptibility to credit market volatility.
And that volatility is going to make for a wild ride. Wikipedia notes that the interest paid on US debt fell from almost 10% of all spending in 2008 to just 5% in 2009:
Budgeted net interest on the public debt was approximately $240 billion in fiscal years 2007 and 2008. This represented approximately 9.5% of government spending. Interest was the fourth largest single budgeted disbursement category, after defense, Social Security, and Medicare.[62] Despite higher debt levels, this declined to $189 billion in 2009 or approximately 5% of spending, due to lower interest rates. Average interest rates declined due to the crisis from 1.6% in 2008 to 0.3% in 2009.[63]
So the interest rate fell to one fifth its previous value (1.6% to 0.3%) and interest payments as a percentage of government spending were only cut in half (9.5% to 5%). While interest payments as a percentage of spending were only halved, the reduction in absolute terms (from $240B to $189B) means that interest payments only fell by 22%—spending rose so much in 2009 that it makes interest payments as a percentage of spending look remarkably better. When interest rates increase from 0.3%, expect huge chunks of federal spending to be devoted to servicing the debt.

Phil Hare (D-IL) Intimidates a Veteran

Phil Hare Intimidates Veteran

Rep Phil "I don't care about the Constitution" Hare (D-IL) didn't like the line of questioning he got from one of his veteran constituents, so he asked a member of his staff to tail that veteran, Ken Moffett, to his car and record Moffett's license plate number. Here are some key quotes from Moffett's letter to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct:
The purpose of this letter is to inform you of an incident which occurred between myself and Representative Phil Hare, on Monday, May 31, 2010.

Congressman Phil Hare, of the 17th Congressional District of Illinois, is misrepresenting his military service during the Vietnam War to attract the votes of veterans....

...Mr. Hare and I were engaged in a conversation concerning the statements he is making around the district about being a veteran. After I pointed out that according to the law he is not a veteran, he became very upset and demanded to know my name. I refused to tell him...
Mr. Hare then told one of his aids who was with him, to follow me to my car and get my license plate number so he could find out who I was. I have since been told that Mr. Hare's daughter works for the DMV.
I have long felt that citizens should be notified whenever a government employee accesses their information—just a simple email with the name of the employee, the date and time, and a reason for the access. Businesses, especially financial services and healthcare, would also benefit from an accountability system like this, too. Part of the vision of the Tea Party movements across this country is one of a government Accountable to the People.

Mr. Moffett: Thank you for your service and may you be blessed with better representation in the future!

Cross Coverage:

Congratulations Dana Loesch!!!

Dana Loesch is #1 again this year in Right Wing News's 20 Hottest Conservative Women in New Media. The photo set above is in chronological order starting with my very first picture of Dana at the February 27th, 2009, Tea Party under the Arch and continuing through the Jefferson County Tea Party this past April.


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Full Video Coverage: Faces of Freedom Rally

Here's complete video coverage of last Saturday's Faces of Freedom Rally in Macon, MO, organized by the Macon County Patriots. Organizers hope to make this an annual event honoring our fallen heroes, veterans, and those currently serving in the United States military. There were speeches from David Doctorian, Cathy Cochran, and Vern Bastian. Doctorian spoke about the sacrifices that the founders made to fight the Revolutionary War. Cochran spoke about the importance of re-reading the Declaration and US Constitution in the context of the sacrifices of the Greatest Generation. And Bastian talked about the motor cyclists that escort our fallen heroes: The Patriot Guard Riders. Live music was provided by the Nelson children, Keota, and Dale Wilson.

Video Playlist Index:
  1. Introduction, Invocation, and Pledge
  2. National Anthem as sung by Martina Miller
  3. Welcome and Recognition of Military
  4. Recognition of Fallen Heroes
  5. David Doctorian pt1
  6. David Doctorian pt2
  7. David Doctorian pt3
  8. Patriotic Medley sung by the Nelson Kids
  9. Keota performs Uncle Elijah
  10. Keota performs These Boots Are Made For Walking
  11. Keota performs Barrel Three
  12. Keota performs Dusty Boxcar Wall
  13. Keota performs Crazy Eyes
  14. Keota performs Past The Point Of Rescue
  15. Keota performs Little White Church
  16. Keota performs The Battle of New Orleans
  17. Keota performs Wagon Wheel
  18. Keota performs Ready for the Times to Get Better
  19. Keota performs 16 Tons
  20. Keota performs Jolene
  21. Keota performs Broken Wing
  22. Dale Wilson sings Cajun Baby
  23. Dale Wilson sings Bologna on White Bread
  24. Dale Wilson sings Where Were You
  25. Cathy Cochran pt1
  26. Cathy Cochran pt2
  27. Vern Bastian on the Patriot Guard Riders
  28. Closing Prayer
  29. Battle Hymn of the Republic
The pictures below were supplied by the Macon County Patriots.


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Music from the Faces of Freedom Rally

Keota performs Wagon Wheel at the Faces of Freedom Rally

I'm still uploading video from Saturday's Faces of Freedom Rally in Macon, MO. Most of the music is posted. The cutest twenty seconds of Saturday's event occurred during the Patriotic Medley sung by the Nelson Children. Watch the whole thing or just skip to 2:26 in the video below if you're in a hurry:

The Nelson Children sing a Patriotic Medley

Cross Coverage:
More to come...

Claire McCaskill's Time Problem

I got the following email Tuesday afternoon [emphasis in original]:
from:    senator@mccaskill.senate.gov
to:    me
date:    Tue, Jun 1, 2010 at 1:39 PM
subject:    Veterans town halls that are open to all
mailed-by    mccaskill.senate.gov
date:    1:39 PM June 1, 2010
Dear Mr. dsm,

As we honor those who have served our country this Memorial Day, U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill wants to hear from Missourians about what Washington can do to ensure our veterans receive the care and treatment they deserve. Next week, Senator McCaskill will travel across the state hosting a series of veterans town hall forums to gather input and listen to the concerns of our veterans and other Missourians.

Given the tremendous sacrifices our veterans made in defending this country, Senator McCaskill is committed to ensuring they receive the support and respect they have earned, including the best level of medical care possible, upon their return. Most recently, Senator McCaskill introduced the TRICARE Mental Health Care Access Act to help meet the growing demand for better access to mental health services for members of our military and their families. Senator McCaskill will be looking for input from Missourians on additional ways the government can continue to honor our veterans through quality care and programs designed to meet their needs.

Please join Senator McCaskill for a veterans town hall forum at:
Tuesday, June 1, 2010

9:15 AM

VFW Post 3944
10815 Midland Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63114

Visit our website to sign up to attend the St. Louis forum.

For additional information, please contact one of Senator McCaskill's five Missouri offices.

Constituents are highly encouraged to register for the events. Depending on the turn-out, there may be more people wishing to attend the event than there is capacity. Seating may be limited and will be first-come, first-served.

Individuals with disabilities who require auxiliary aids or services to participate in this event should contact Joeana Middleton at 314-367-0255.
I applaud Senator Claire McCaskill for inviting a tea partier like myself, but why send the invitation after the event? Perhaps her strategy to make the trains run on time is to notify all the passengers waiting on the platform that their train left without them four hours ago.