March 28, 2001
Human cloning per se isn't
Human cloning per se isn't wrong. Twins are natural clones. The problem is treating embryos as material just to satisfy people's desires. When the unborn are not treated with the respect they deserve as human beings massive defects and miscarriages are ignored. Famed cloning scientist Dr. Ian Wilmut is even opposed to human cloning.
"Dolly's Creator Says No to Human Cloning"
March 27, 2001
I'm the Cult of Personality.
I'm the Cult of Personality.
"Living Colour Reunite"
Old-school country star Charlie Pride's
Old-school country star Charlie Pride's newest CD will be on the technological cutting edge. The tracks are supposedly copy-proof. That means they can't be ripped and "shared" on Napster.
Will this work? Only in the short-run until the gang over at Slashdot develops a work around.
California utility regulators are taking
California utility regulators are taking a progressive step by letting the two utilities awash in $13 billion of debt raise their electricity rates. While so-called consumer advocacy groups are saying it's a rip-off, the fact is Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and Southern California Edison Co. are losing a fortune by selling electricity below what it costs them to buy it on the wholesale market. Practically giving away electricity isn't exactly what I would call a "rip-off."
What the rate hike does is tell consumers that electricity is scarce and they must limit their use or pay higher electricity bills. Instead of crazy schemes by Gov. Gray Davis (D-CA) to have state government buy power production, the PUC is taking advantage of the Law of Demand.
"Calif. Regulators OK Rate Increases"
The Vancouver Grizzlies (a horrible,
The Vancouver Grizzlies (a horrible, truly awful name for a team) wants to move to Memphis. The rumor is that Federal Express is interested not only in buying naming rights to the arena, but in buying naming rights to the team and calling them the Memphis Express.
The idea works well in this case because Memphis Express does sound authentic. Names like the Memphis Swooshes or the Memphis Yahoos! wouldn't cut it even with media-savy fans.
The biggest obstacle isn't possible public outcry. It's marketing conflicts with the NBA. If this deal happens, it could become like the Jerry Jones/NFL battles from a few years ago.
"Heisley Taps Last Mother Lode of Revenue Streams"
March 26, 2001
Like Sen. Lieberman (D-CT), Larry
Like Sen. Lieberman (D-CT), Larry Kudlow wants immediate tax relief, but like me, he wants a tax rate cut.
The problem isn't a lack of consumer spending. The returns on investment need to be better so more investment and innovation can occur. Lower tax rates provide that incentive. The demand side isn't the problem, it's the supply side.
"Rethink the Rebate"
Tunku Varadarajan chastizes the Murdochs
Tunku Varadarajan chastizes the Murdochs for toting water for the Chinese communists. He also thinks the Chinese are playing the Murdochs and not vice versa:
More great news for my
More great news for my stock portfolio: Cisco CEO John Chambers sees a U.S. economic downturn lasting at least three quarters.
A tax cut would be nice. I'd even accept the $300 per worker rebate Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) is proposing, but an across-the-board tax rate cut would still be needed. That would offer the best incentive for people to invest, innovate, and grow their businesses.
"Cisco Sees US Downturn Continuing, Spreading"
March 25, 2001
President Bush is a true
President Bush is a true believer in partial privatization of Social Security.
Notice no reports of requests for polling data or reaction from focus groups? This man has solid conservative instincts.
"Inside Report: Florida Retribution"
If News Corp's future lies
If News Corp's future lies with a lap dog like James Murdoch, then don't ever count me as a future stockholder. It's just another example of a businessman giving capitalism a bad name.
U2's Elevation Tour kicked off
U2's Elevation Tour kicked off last night. I'm still looking for reasonably priced tickets to the 5.9.01 show in Milwaukee.
March 24, 2001
A free trade deal with
A free trade deal with Australia would be great, but forget about what Collin Powell said that "it takes quite a while to put such an agreement together and then to present it to our respective legislatures." The U.S. Congress should pass a bill unilaterally removing all tariffs with Austrialia and President Bush should sign it. That would be the best idea for U.S. consumers. If Australia wants to do likewise, then more power to them.
March 23, 2001
David Horowitz has certainly stirred
David Horowitz has certainly stirred up lots of free publicity and inspired many inches in op-ed pages over his ad opposing slavery reparations. He has also exposed the thought police on some college campuses who can't tolerate opposing opinions. Yes, Political Correctness is alive and well at some universities. The editor of the Daily Californian apologized for printing the ad, ticking off defenders of journalistic freedom.
Unfortunately, the campus radicalism took away from Horowitz's arguments against reparations. The most salient one is that justice can't be served because the victims (Black slaves) are dead along with their perpetrators (White slave holders). To expect compensation from those not responsible to those undeserving is absurd. Reparation proponents also ignore the tremendous achievments of the Black community in the 150+ years since slavery was outlawed. The Black middle-class is now larger than the under-class. Blacks are some of the most recognized and respected people (Michael Jordan, Collin Powell, Clarence Thomas) in the country. Reparations would only engulf this nation in harsh racial conflict.
"Storm Troopers vs. Free Speech"
March 22, 2001
Musicians on tour are feeling
Musicians on tour are feeling the Napster effect and are hesitant from playing new songs live.
"(Don't) Love You Live: Napster Fears Keep Bands From Playing New Songs"
Singer Carl Thomas wants "to
Singer Carl Thomas wants "to be in on the hustle" with Napster.
"Carl Thomas Discusses Napster, Mase, and Mary J. Blige"
Kudos to Bill for his
Kudos to Bill for his fine letter to the editor on the uselessness of more gun control laws. I especially like the part where he wrote, "All the laws in the world won't stop a crazy person intent on hurting my kids, but one man or woman equipped with training, determination and a single gun can stop that killer in a second."
"More Gun Laws Won't Stop School Shootings"
If any storms of scandal
If any storms of scandal that plagued the Clinton administration come up on President Bush, Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Judiciary Committee Chairman (and my representative) will be there to investigate. Don't expect a free ride from him.
I told both Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI Director Louis Freeh that just because I'm the chairman and the administration is of my party, they don't get a pass on oversight.
March 21, 2001
Larry Kudlow thinks the S&P
Larry Kudlow thinks the S&P will reach 4640 by 2010. It's around 1100 right now. He bases this prediction on growing economic freedom: low inflation, a tax cut, expanded free trade, and reduced government regulations. For Kudlow, "It’s a good time for long-run investing."
"Invest for the Long Run"
Salon is trying a new
Salon is trying a new subscription service. If you pay, you won't see ads. They're also adding a "new download feature enabling users to read Salon when not connected to the Internet and to conveniently print out multiple articles for offline reading." Doesn't that sound a little like the subscription incarnation of Slate? And we know how well that worked.
I've rediscovered B&L&F&R. Snazzy new
I've rediscovered B&L&F&R. Snazzy new look and Dreama's rejected the local GOP.
President Bush will be in
President Bush will be in Milwaukee next month to help open Miller Park.
"George W. to Throw Out First Pitch at Miller Park"
March 20, 2001
In the end, this is
In the end, this is a losing battle, but a man in England is fighting to save his unborn child from a legal kill. I wish him the best of luck.
Pages like this one via
Pages like this one via ETWOF make me seriously question the criminalization of marijuana. I have no desire to ever smoke a doobie, but is the stuff any worse than alcohol?
10 Things You Should Know about Marijuana
March 18, 2001
Pat Robertson rightly sees President
Pat Robertson rightly sees President Bush's faith-based social service plan as a possible intrusion into the defining characteristic of those services: an emphasis on faith. This is Robertson's proposed modification to Bush's plan:
Wouldn't it be easier to just boost the tax deductibility of charitable donations? No Office of Faith-Based Initiatives would be needed.
"What's Wrong With The Faith-Based Initiative"
March 17, 2001
In academic economic thought, I
In academic economic thought, I ally myself most closely with the Austrian School of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek. I firmly believe that Hayek's essay "The Use of Knowledge in Society" is the greatest contribution to economics in the 20th Century. As opposed to those economists who show off their mathmatical skill (and physics envy) with their razzle-dazzle models that make heroic assumptions, Austrians focus squarely on the individual in their economic analysis. Peter Boetke has a nice, simple introduction to Austrian economic thinking.
"An Essay on Austrian Economics"
Jim Glassman sees software companies
Jim Glassman sees software companies like Microsoft, Adobe, and Symantec as defensive tech stocks in this bear market.
He likes software companies because "Software is like the computer chip industry except you don’t have to build a factory. It’s like the pharmaceutical industry except you don’t need FDA approval. It’s like Hollywood without the $20 million salaries."
In other words, software companies have low capital costs; they rely on "gathering a bunch of really smart people together to create something new and special." The downside is that low capital costs allow some other company to gather their own bunch of smart people and make something better.
"'Defensive' Stocks in the NASDAQ"
March 16, 2001
I'm losing more money.
I'm losing more money.
March 15, 2001
Rush Limbaugh has watched the
Rush Limbaugh has watched the dot-coms become dot-bombs and learned from their mistakes. Limbaugh is now offering a subscription service where subscribers can listen to 2-week archives of his radio show, get links to his famous "stack of stuff," and recieve occasional "audio blasts" on current events. Rush waited for the free-for-all Internet business to demonstrate its unprofitability and has a shot at making some serious dough. He offers a specialized product that can't be commoditized to a niche audience. It's a second generation Internet business model that many will watch to see if it succeeds.
March 14, 2001
America's favorite bow hunter/rock star
America's favorite bow hunter/rock star says Napster is "un-American."
But could the record companies please realize the demand for easy-to-use music downloads?
"Cat Scratch Thiever"
With St. Patrick's Day arriving
With St. Patrick's Day arriving this weekend, I re-read Thomas Cahill's How the Irish Saved Civilization. This delightful book tells the story of Christianity coming to Ireland and vital knowledge returning to Europe from the Emerald Isle. The Celtic barbarians take up the faith through the determined missionary work of St. Patrick. These new high-strung Christians then took to copying books--any and all they could get their hands on. So, while Rome was sacked and continential European church leaders fled to the confines of their cities, literacy deteriorated and books were lost. A few centuries later, like St. Patrick, Irish monks set off on their own missionary journeys taking their copies of Greek and Latin classics with them. That is, in Cahill's words, "how the Irish saved civilization."
The prose is lyrical. Cahill obviously loved writing about the Irish. Pre-Christian Ireland is displayed in all its (sometimes) grandiose harshness. The book is a great example of good popular history: it's short, focused, learned, and the reader is never looked down upon.
"Who Saved Civilization? The Irish, That's Who!"
Angus has gone for the
Angus has gone for the ADD look on his home page.
The free market strikes again!
The free market strikes again! Disposable cell phones and pre-paid credit cards offer privacy-seeking people some relief.
"Prepaid Phones and Privacy, Too"
March 13, 2001
Wired News has a great
Wired News has a great article on the Russian hacker/cracker culture. I liked one computer guru's bravado: "We call Russia the Hackzone because there are so many of us here, and we are so good at what we do."
"Inside Russia's Hacking Culture"
The Nasdaq is below 2000
The Nasdaq is below 2000 for the first time in over 2 years. Along with that, Cisco's stock is at its lowest level since December 1998. I guess last summer wasn't such a good time to jump into QQQ and CSCO. But I'm looking at the long-term. John Chambers' company is still numero uno in networking equipment. People are still thinking of new ways to connect and use the network everyday. Technology isn't going away. The router king will just have to wait until telecom spending picks up.
"Tech Stocks Drag Nasdaq to More Than 2-Year Low"
March 12, 2001
Sonicnet interviewed DJ John Digweed
Sonicnet interviewed DJ John Digweed on the release of his latest mix CD Global Underground: Los Angeles.
John Digweed's Global Foundations"
The Palm Beach Post thinks
The Palm Beach Post thinks Al Gore won the election because of the all the overvotes from the infamous butterfly ballot. This is just pure speculation. Former Montana governor, now private citizen, Marc Racicot put it simply, "You're [Palm Beach Post] trying too hard to find a correlation here. You don't know these people, you don't know what they intended."
"Over-votes cost Gore the election in FL"
March 10, 2001
Can we please privatize Amtrak?
Can we please privatize Amtrak? On their most profitable train, it only makes $38 per passenger. Now, they want $30 billion over 20 years to build a high speed rail service. Let me concur with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ): "Now it's clear it's not going to be self-sufficient–and we need a national debate over what to do about it."
"The Train is Leaving the Depot"
The most backward nation on
The most backward nation on earth is almost finished destroying two of the largest Buddhas in existence.
March 08, 2001
While Mike is away, Kevin
Christian bigot and billionaire, Ted
Christian bigot and billionaire, Ted Turner insulted a number of CNN staffers who attended Ash Wednesday services by saying, "I realized you're just Jesus freaks. Shouldn't you guys be working for Fox?"
Will the Mouth from the South's comment get as much deserved criticism as Jerry Fallwell's?
"Turner's Rep is in Ashes"
Stephen Moore offers the essence
Stephen Moore offers the essence of supply-side economics:
Howard Kurtz reports on Rich
Howard Kurtz reports on Rich Lowry's possible NYC mayoral bid.
Why would Lowry run in a race he'll probably lose?
Go, Rich, go!
"Rich Lowry's Unlikely Manhattan Project"
In response to Angus' gun-control
In response to Angus' gun-control argument:
Angus, you forget the point I made about the "countless negative influences, and parents who would rather be their child's best friend than their disciplinarian." It's not as simple as banning guns. While gun control may work in Australia (at least with homicides, but what about property crimes?), it hasn't work in the U.S. American society is suffering from a culture of death. Women are allowed to kill their unborn children because they're inconvienent. Government kills murderers in the name of justice (more like revenge). Kids listen to Eminem rap about raping his mother. Death and violence seem to be the solution to life's problems. Many cultural influences desensitize us to violence or even encourage it. Add in an huge dose of cynicism toward many institutions, whether deserved or not, and a pinch of hopelessness from eco-nuts who think Mankind is the scourge of the earth and I can see how a kid picked on by others could resort to shooting fellow students.
Before banning guns, teachers should be armed. Mr. Williams might have thought twice about going on his illegal escapade if he thought there was a chance of encountering someone armed and with the will to fight back.
"Firearms Training School Is Offering Free Instruction For Teachers"
That damn Mike! He beat
That damn Mike! He beat me to this Onion story. What I want to see is a steel cage match between Majority Whip Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) and Rep. Charles "I brought Bill Clinton to Harlem" Rangel (D-NY). Or how about a hardcore match between Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN) with the winner getting the Government Reform Chairmanship?
Is the federal income tax
Is the federal income tax legal? The We the People Foundation for Constitutional Education doesn't think so and paid for an ad stating just that. But tax reform advocates think they don't know what they're talking about.
Since the income tax has existed since 1913, one would think it's gone through many legal challenges already. It's continued existence seems to back the notion of its legality.
"Tax Season Triggers Debate Over Legality of Income Tax"
March 07, 2001
Rush on yesterday's Napster news:
Rush on yesterday's Napster news:
While agreeing that Napster is allowing the theft of copyrighted material, I do think the record companies are being really stupid in not working with Napster to develop a legal digital music distribution system. I've played around with Napster myself and know how seductively simple it is to use. Search for songs you haven't heard in years, find the songs you only heard the last few seconds of on the radio, download them and burn them on a CD. It's that simple. I've seen the future of music distribution. Hopefully, the record companies have too.
"Listen Like Thieves"
A post on Metafilter offers
A post on Metafilter offers this comment on Napster and Net culture:
Gary Becker on the results
Gary Becker on the results of tougher law enforcement:
"Tough Justice Is Saving Our Inner Cities"
March 06, 2001
Jim Powell's sample chapter from
Jim Powell's sample chapter from his book The Triumph of Liberty is a great introduction to the Nobel Prize-winning economist F. A. Hayek.
The life and times of F.A. Hayek, who explained why political liberty is impossible without economic liberty
Will the 2002 New York
Will the 2002 New York City mayoral race be 1965 all over again? Will another National Review editor carry the conservative flag to counter a mediocre Republican?
Gene Callahan reviewed Thomas Sowell's
Gene Callahan reviewed Thomas Sowell's Basic Economics.
This is because "the flaws in the book are, from an Austrian perspective, significant, and undermine many of its strong points."
I'm reading the book right now and can understand why Callahan finds flaws "from an Austrian perspective." Sowell isn't an economist of the Austrian School. He's a Hayekian greatly influenced by the University of Chicago where he earned his doctorate.
While lacking in Austrian purity (whatever that means), Sowell's book is a good economics lesson or a refresher course. He emphasises the roles of prices and profits (or losses) and knocks down many economic fallacies.
After all the time and
After all the time and money the King of Pop spent to make himself look like a pasty alien from the Roswell UFO crash, I have new-found respect for him. All that surgery has got to hurt. His pain tolerance must be incredible.
Rich Galen, a politico with
Rich Galen, a politico with his own heart problems, commented on Vice President Dick Cheney's hospitalization:
Maybe I should re-evaluate my comments from yesterday.
Moratorium 2000 advocates a death
Moratorium 2000 advocates a death penalty cease-fire. I've signed the petition, how about you?
President Bush should seriously consider
President Bush should seriously consider a replacement for Vice President Dick Cheney. Cheney's taking an extreme amount of responsiblity in running the administration. For all practical purposes, he's the chief of staff (sorry, Andrew Card). That work load requires a person healthy enough to handle the stress. Cheney's hospitalization puts some serious doubts in his ability to finish his term. He's a good conservative, but I don't want to see him die in office.
How about Jack Kemp as a replacement? He would be the biggest tax-cutting cheer leader Bush could find.
"Cheney has 'Non-Emergency' Procedure After Chest Twinge"
What will come from the
What will come from the tragedy in Santee yesterday is an extremely heightened alertness to any possible threat of violence from kids no matter how tiny that threat is. Parents will yank the toy guns and Star Wars action figures out of their children's hands. If a kid does something innocuous like draw a gun on paper during art class or shape their hand into a gun and point it at another classmate, they will be instantly suspended. Any mention of bringing a gun to school no matter how much of a joke it is will be called in to the police. Governments will pour money into profiling software to try to predict who will be a killer. It'll all be done "for the children," but it's just an unthinking, knee-jerk response to the unexplainable.
With a population of 270 million, countless negative influences, and parents who would rather be their child's best friend than their disciplinarian, horrible instances like the Santee and Columbine will happen again.
Forget more gun control. Mr. Williams broke lots of laws doing what he did. More words passed by legislators wouldn't have stopped him.
"Boasts to Friends Went Unbelieved"
March 05, 2001
Curt Brown was all psyched
Curt Brown was all psyched about helping his brother on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" His reference books were within arms reach on his desk and his computer was just begging for him to enter a search term and take advantage of a fast Net connection. Then he got a question about Vincent LaGuardia Gambini.
"When Regis Calls: Confessions of a Phone-a-Friend"
Harold Stassen, former Minnesota governor,
Harold Stassen, former Minnesota governor, liberal Republican, World War II veteran, and perpetual Presidential candidate died yesterday. While seldom agreeing with him on politics, Stassen lightened up the super-seriousness that ensnares politics too often. Godspeed, Harold.
"`He was Smart and He was Brave'"
"Former Gov. Harold Stassen Dies; He was 93"
AFL-CIO (and Democratic Socialists of
AFL-CIO (and Democratic Socialists of America member) President John Sweeney must have been ignoring the news in the past few weeks:
Mr. Sweeney seems to have lost touch with reality.
"Progressives, Democratic-Socialists Insist Bush 'Did Not Win the Election'"
Mike didn't get dumped. There
Mike didn't get dumped. There goes my future career as a weatherman.
March 03, 2001
Mike and the D.C. area
Mike and the D.C. area are going to get dumped.
"We're still watching the models grapple with exactly how it's going to come together," said Ressler. "We're looking for over a foot from southern New England through northern Virginia."
"Nor'easter threatens Eastern Seaboard"
President Bush is taking full
President Bush is taking full advantage of the office's bully pulpit. Personal events, television speeches, radio addresses, one-on-one conversations, all are used by Bush to build support for his tax cut plan.
Some may compare this campaign atmosphere to Bill Clinton's perpetual campaign he ran while in office for eight years. But the decided difference is the focus. Bill was always focused on the one person he always cared about--Bill. Focus groups and opinion polls were constantly employed to see how Bill could always remain in the public's good graces and how to massage public sentiment. Bush, on the other hand, is advocating a set of ideas. Sure, it's in Bush's long term political interests to win the budget/tax battle, but it's really refreshing to see the emphasis on ideas rather than personality.
"Bush Takes to Radio Waves to Push Tax Cut"
March 02, 2001
Kausfiles has slapped an Amazon.com
Kausfiles has slapped an Amazon.com cash box and a mini-portal to the bottom of the site.
Afghanistan, the most backward nation
Afghanistan, the most backward nation on earth, is destroying its cultural past.
"Afghanistan's Antiquities Under Assault"
A great ship named after
A great ship named after a great President, the USS Ronald Reagan wil be christened Sunday.
"Navy, Shipbuilders Prepare Reagan Carrier for Christening"
March 01, 2001
Zannah has a first-hand account
Zannah has a first-hand account of living through the Seattle earthquake.
Professor Bart Beaty says the
Professor Bart Beaty says the difficulty of securing copyright permission is "absolutely the most serious problem facing comic-book scholarship."
There's actually comic book scholarship?!? The possible homoeroticism in Batman comics doesn't surprise me as much as the small industry of comic book scholarship. There's an International Journal of Comic Art and an International Encyclopedia of Comics soon to be published. Ah, the power of tenure.
"Pow! Wham! Permission Denied!"
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette editorial page editor
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette editorial page editor Paul Greenberg went from being a commentator blocked from a local public radio station because of his conservative views to a commentator defended by his liberal counterpart who will share air time with him.
Kudos go out to Kevin for the tip.
The New York Observer wants
The New York Observer wants Hillary Clinton booted out of her Senate seat:
It is clear now that we have made a terrible mistake, for Hillary Rodham Clinton is unfit for elective office. Had she any shame, she would resign. If federal officeholders were subject to popular recall, she’d be thrown out of office by springtime, the season of renewal.
"Clinton Corruption Plays Us for Fools—We Won’t Forget"