[star]The American Mind[star]

June 28, 2001

The first leg of my

The first leg of my journey went smoothly. I'm writing this post from Newark International Airport. Now, I suffer through the waiting game for another 3 hours until my flight to Paris leaves. I flew on Continental here and a nice thing about their terminal is the vast offering of free magazines. I will be stocking up on the latest issues of The Weekly Standard and National Review for the 7 hour flight. In order to pass the time I packed Toqueville's Democracy in America. Maybe after this trip I should write Democracy in France. Oh, I love the irony.

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:52 PM | Comments (0)

No, the altered logo at

No, the altered logo at the top is not some bit of wishful thinking. Today, I am off on a trans-Atlantic flight to France.

I have my passport, so they'll let me leave the country, but will they let me return? Will TAM become TAMTF (The American Mind Trapped in France)?

Me and my passport.

My mother has threatened to make a phone call to the State Department. Secretary Powell, don't listen to her. I'm a nice guy and liked your book. I also promise to vote for your boss again in 2004.

My itinerary includes a few days in Paris, then going south on the TGV to Dax to attend the World Conference of the International Society for Individual Liberty. This year's conference is entitled "2001, Bastiat's Odyssey" in honor of the 200th birthday of the French economist, Frederic Bastiat.


Frederic Bastiat's mug

To learn more about Bastiat, Sheldon Richman has an annotated bibliography that also provides a bit of biography. Bastiat is quite an accessible writer. He uses sound logic and many examples to hammer down his point. His best essay is "That Which is Seen, and That Which is Not Seen," where he shoots down economic fallacies and sees the importance of unintended consequences when analyzing policies.

My plan with TAM is to keep you updated on my little adventure in the land of fine wine and hairy women, but I'm not certain of easy access to the web. I know of one Internet cafe in Paris, and there should be some terminals at Newark Airport and Charles De Gaulle Airport. As to the extent of Net access in Dax, I'm clueless.

Wish me luck battling evil airline service, jetlag, and American-hating Europeans. One more thing, how do you say "We surrender!" in French?

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:43 AM | Comments (0)

Continuing with my facination with

Continuing with my facination with President Bush and the Hispanic community, The Washington Times interviewed Bush's top political strategist, Karl Rove. Rove's answer to Bush's popularity in the Hispanic community is because "we take our policies to the Hispanic community in a way that it hears and retains, and it knows that we're making a special effort to talk to them." The White House has emphasised communicating to Hispanics. Many Cabinet offices now have Spanish-speaking press aids.

Rove's strategy is working so far. He pointed out that a recent poll gave Bush a 59% approval rating with Hispanics. But what really matters is how all this outreach helps Bush in 2004.

"Rove's Strategies to Woo Hispanics Working for Bush"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:55 AM | Comments (0)

June 27, 2001

Looking for a new job?

Looking for a new job? Here's your chance to have fun and adventure while defending the American Way. The search is still on for a new FBI chief. Some qualifications include working well with others, computer skills, and the ability to sniff out spies.

"New Search Launched for FBI Chief" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 08:58 PM | Comments (0)

If Transgenic Pets has its

If Transgenic Pets has its way, people allergic to cats will be able to play with Fluffy without sneezing or popping pills. TP's founder Dr. David Avner wants to genetically engineer an allergen-free cat. If Dr. Avner gets his much-needed investment and actually pulls it off, will that mean their will be more awful cat web pages to endure?

"Entrepreneur Envisions a Cat That Doesn't Cause Allergies"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:43 AM | Comments (0)

Brooke Allen defends super bookstore

Brooke Allen defends super bookstore chains like Borders and Barnes & Noble (my employer). Allen points out that the superstores have brought vast amounts of culture beyond the confines of urban America. One of the reasons some people attack the superstores is because their elitist mentality can't accept such wide access to so many books.

The response to the article at Metafilter is surprising. Instead of the knee-jerk "corporations are evil" mantra I expected, many people acknowledge the cultural good the chains brought to society.

"Two—Make That Three—Cheers for the Chain Bookstores" [via Robot Wisdom]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:05 AM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2001

The U.S. is at risk

The U.S. is at risk from possible space attack. No, not from little green men, but from other nations who see our vulnerabilities. Jack Spenser notes:


America's commercial, civil, and military reliance on space inevitably will draw attacks from hostile powers that see its undefended capability as an Achilles heel, as Chinese military writings make clear. Adversaries will target America's military satellites to destroy critical infrastructure, and civilian systems to disrupt American life. Exploding a nuclear warhead in space would obliterate satellites nearby and release enough radiation to destroy other satellites in low-Earth orbit within months. Hostile nations that have ballistic missiles could explode warheads filled with pellets, sand, or shrapnel within 100 meters of a satellite, destroying it on impact. Currently, over 20 nations possess or are developing ground-based lasers capable of disrupting satellite signals. Reportedly, a British satellite was thrown out of orbit by invading computer hackers (the British government denies this account).

Spencer's recommendation is to develop a next-generation space lauch vehicle to quickly send up needed payloads. Instead of depending so much on the federal government, Spencer should have also recommended relaxed regulatory rules to allow private interests to have a shot at low cost rockets.

"America Needs a New Space Launch Vehicle"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 02:05 AM | Comments (0)

Are you a "minder" or

Are you a "minder" or a "brainer"?

"No Brainer"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:33 AM | Comments (0)

For the sake of the

For the sake of the oppress Cuban people, I hope last Saturday's fainting spell is a sign that Fidel Castro's days as a brutal thug are numbered.

"Castro Falters, Recovers

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:02 AM | Comments (0)

June 25, 2001

Slate got Glassed. A story

Slate got Glassed. A story posted on the magazine site describes an afternoon of monkey fishing. Supposedly fruit was baited to a hook and tossed onto an island off Florida's coast inhabited by rhesus monkeys. OpinionJournal.com didn't buy the story for a minute. Now, the NY Times reports that the story is a hoax. Even Slate publisher Michael Kinsley admits he was fooled.

One lesson to learn: think twice before believing anything written by Jay Forman. Another lesson: if a story seems to be way too-out-there, it probably is.

"Tortured Tale of Journalism and Monkeys"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:53 PM | Comments (0)

Stephen Moore wants President Bush's

Stephen Moore wants President Bush's picture on the tax rebate checks to be sent out later this year. He calls them "G. W. Checks." The picture's great, but the name is awful. Since the checks would have a President on it just like our currency, they should be called "Bush Bucks." That rolls off the tongue better.

"G. W. Checks" [via Reductio]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:33 PM | Comments (0)

No matter how much Sen.

No matter how much Sen. Jeffords (I-VT) and Northeast socialists crow, price controls on milk don't help family farmers and force everyone else to pay more at the store. The Northeast Dairy Compact should be scrapped along with the socialized milk pricing formula that sets prices based on how far the producer is from Eau Claire, WI. I demand a free market in milk now!

"The OPEC of Milk"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:42 AM | Comments (0)

P.J. O'Rourke notices that California's

P.J. O'Rourke notices that California's energy problems are an excuse for some to attack capitalism:


The world is full of mental Californians who, despite a century of socialist catastrophes, are willing to blame the free market for things like the California energy crisis.

"Stupidity in the Golden State" [via ETWOF]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:36 AM | Comments (0)

Yeah!!!! John's getting hitched!

Yeah!!!! John's getting hitched!

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:17 AM | Comments (0)

June 24, 2001

Who says crime doesn't pay.

Who says crime doesn't pay. In England, two teenagers will be released after eight years in custody. Robert Thompson and Jon Venables were 10 when they killed James Bulger. Now, with their release Thompson, Venables, and their families will be given new identities to protect them from vilgilante attack. But not only will they get new identities, but the Sun reports


Both teenagers and their families have been given new names, birth certificates, passports and National Insurance numbers. They will also get fully-fitted £65,000 homes with the £270-a-week rent paid.

On top of that they are in line for free cars, credit cards, police protection and cash handouts for the rest of their lives - all paid for by taxpayers.


They get all this because these two creeps brutally killed a little boy. I wonder what goodies Tim McVeigh would have got if he blew up a building in London rather than Oklahoma City?

"Bulger Killers Go on Hols"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:06 AM | Comments (0)

June 23, 2001

The Associated Press provides more

The Associated Press provides more on Sergio Bendixen and the Hispanic vote.

"He's romancing them and appealing to them at a personal level and the Democrats are doing nothing," said Bendixen in an interview.

The story also reported that 60% of Hispanics approve the way President Bush is doing his job.

The Democrats' response is denial. "We carried the Hispanic vote 2-to-1 ... they have a problem and we don't," said Democratic strategist Michael Meehan.

"Pollster Warns Dems: Bush and Hispanics Connecting"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:36 PM | Comments (0)

June 21, 2001

I will be expecting my

I will be expecting my tax refund check in early September. I would like it now so I can convert it into francs. $300 equals 2,305.89 francs.

When Should You Expect Your Refund Check?

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:08 PM | Comments (0)

The Texas legislature wants the

The Texas legislature wants the U.S. to end its embargo with Cuba. The purpose of the embargo is to force Fidel Castro from power and return freedom to all Cubans. It's now been over 40 years since the embargo started, and there is no end in sight for Castro's brutal regime. A new policy is in order. Isolating Cuba from the U.S. hasn't brought freedom to Cuba. Maybe a healthy dose of American capitalism will.

"Texas Calls for End of Cuba Embargo"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

William F. Buckley's search for

William F. Buckley's search for pants with a special cell phone pocket caused him to discover Abercrombie & Fitch's catalog with it's wanton displays of youthful flesh. Some odd thoughts popped into my head after reading the column: I can't imaging Buckley with a cell phone. My mind can't grasp the founder of the magazine who's motto is "Standing athwart history yelling, stop!" yapping away on a Nokia 5120. I also can't imagine staid Buckley entering an Abercrombie & Fitch with its booming music echoing throughout the store. I would think Buckley would arrive at the entrance, hear the thumping bass from some dance track, turn around to leave, and ask one of his grandchildren to help him buy his pants through their website.

What Buckley does offer in his column is a description of America's continued loss of innocence and mystery. Sex and human sexuality are truly beautiful, but such candid displays of sexuality desensitize us from appreciating that beauty. It's been said that 99% of sexuality is between our ears. Such direct sexual exposure lessens the need to employ our brains.

"Show Your ID Before Reading"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:26 PM | Comments (0)

Convential wisdom says Democrats are

Convential wisdom says Democrats are more in tune with minority voters. But Sergio Bendixen thinks the Democrats have a problem with Hispanics...a big problem. "My message is that Democrats are in deep trouble with Hispanics," Bendixen told The Washington Times. He thinks President Bush is making strong inroads with that growing voting bloc. Bendixen goes so far as to see the possiblity of Bush getting 50% of the Hispanic vote in the next election. Bendixen's counterattack for Democrats is to tell this constituency that "'W´ is not a good friend." It's not the wisest strategy to go negative and bash the opposition while admitting that the target of the attack "truly connects with Hispanics."

You'll notice that this isn't a positive, issue-oriented agenda. Sure Bendixen mentions public education and the minimum wage, but he positions them as something President Bush opposes (which he doesn't). Nowhere does Bendixen or Donna Brazile (AlGore's 2000 campaign manager) offer a pro-active agenda. To them, Bush is just fooling Hispanics with his outreach. Such ignorance could prove costly in future elections.

"Democrats Told to Woo Hispanics"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 02:47 AM | Comments (0)

June 20, 2001

Please vote for Blogger in

Please vote for Blogger in the Personal catagory of the Webby Awards People's Voice. Without that nifty service TAM wouldn't be quite the same, interesting, highly judgemental weblog you've come to love. Blogger deserves to win, so I'm asking for your support.

Also write in National Review for the Print Ezine catagory. There is no conservative/libertarian voice in that catagory. Let the world know that the Right has a loud voice on the Web.

Thanks.

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 09:28 PM | Comments (0)

June 19, 2001

The Centers for Disease Control

The Centers for Disease Control can't find evidence that people got sick from an allergic reaction to genetically modified Starlink corn. Too bad this fact hasn't stopped the environmentalists who want genetically modified food banned from human consumption.

"Genetically Engineered Corn Cleared in 17 Food Reactions"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 02:04 AM | Comments (0)

A KISS coffin is only

A KISS coffin is only for the true "die"-hard fan. It also doubles as a really big cooler until Death's dark hand rips you from this world.

"Simmons Offers One Last Kiss"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:49 AM | Comments (0)

With this latest attack by

With this latest attack by a knife-wielding criminal will Sarah Brady call for a 5-day waiting period before a Japanese can buy a knife?

"New Attack in Japan Raises Alarm on Violent Crime"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:42 AM | Comments (0)

June 18, 2001

India's infamous monkeyman scare was

India's infamous monkeyman scare was caused by "emotionally-weak" people.

"Mass Hysteria Manufactured Monkeyman"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 02:14 PM | Comments (0)

This was the weirdest ending

This was the weirdest ending to a final U.S. Open round I've ever seen, but it provide this funky quote from South African choker--I mean golfer--Retief Goosen: "Obviously, I'm not happy, but what can I do? I'm not going to jump out of my hotel room tonight. It's golf, and things happen."

"Disasters at 18 Force Playoff"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:21 PM | Comments (0)

It wasn't a good weekend

It wasn't a good weekend at Milwaukee's Miller Park. The Brewers lost 2 of 3 from the Kansas City Royals. Friday night's game was canceled because of a power outage. Then yesterday, an elevator trapped 13 or 19 people including Brewers' radio announcer Jim Powell. "It's a good story to tell, definitely a first for me," said Powell.

"People Trapped in Elevator at Miller Park"

"Group Rescued from Elevator at Miller Park"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:17 PM | Comments (0)

June 17, 2001

Milwaukee has its first oxygen

Milwaukee has its first oxygen bar. I can imagine this goofy West Coast craze coming to Madison, but not the more down-to-earth Milwaukee.

"It's Okay to Inhale!"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:30 AM | Comments (0)

Professor Robert Essenhigh doesn't think

Professor Robert Essenhigh doesn't think global warming is man-made. He's quoted as saying,

At 6 billion tons, humans are then responsible for a comparatively small amount - less than 5 percent - of atmospheric carbon dioxide. And if nature is the source of the rest of the carbon dioxide, then it is difficult to see that man-made carbon dioxide can be driving the rising temperatures. In fact, I don't believe it does.

Essenhigh thinks global warming is just a natural climate cycle. Increased carbon dioxide in the atmophere is a symptom of the cycle and not its cause.

This would put a damper on environmentalists' desire to regulate the economy in order to "save the planet," but facts won't get in the way of extending government's power.

"Global Warming Natural, May End Within 20 Years, Says Ohio State University Researcher" [via Robot Wisdom]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:07 AM | Comments (0)

June 16, 2001

A Trotskyist group of screamers

A Trotskyist group of screamers is trying to take over the Oakland, CA teachers' union. What teachers' union president Sheila Quintana doesn't realize is that her radical opponents are just taking ideas and values she subscribes to to their logical conclusion.

"Class Struggle" [via Metafilter]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:27 PM | Comments (0)

Bret Stephens finds little real

Bret Stephens finds little real anti-American opposition in Europe. All the anger is from a small group of protesters, Leftist politicians, and publicity-seekers.

So, while the average European isn't filled with rage toward Bush and the U.S., European Union propellerheads fear General Electric and oppose its merger with Honeywell.

"GE/Honeywell Merger at La Mort's Door?"

"Europe Doesn't Hate Bush"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:55 PM | Comments (0)

Jesse Helms: staunch conservative Senator

Jesse Helms: staunch conservative Senator and U2 fan.

"Sen. Helms Takes in U2 Concert" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 03:50 PM | Comments (0)

June 14, 2001

Labeling egg cartons won't stop

Labeling egg cartons won't stop free-wheeling lawyers from filing lawsuits. Look at the tobacco industry. Waiter, make mine over-easy. I like to dunk my toast into the yummy gooey goodness.

"Beware of Danger by the Dozens"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

The next thing we'll find

The next thing we'll find out is that breathing (exhaling to be exact) causes pollution. It's all that carbon dioxide we expel.

"Candles Now Blamed for Earth's Pollution" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:02 PM | Comments (0)

Professional athletes seem to be

Professional athletes seem to be overwhelmingly conservative. John Solomon wonders why. Some of the great quotes he got include Charles Barkley explaining to his grandmother why he's for the GOP ("Grandma, we are rich.") and Arturs Irbe from formerly communist Latvia ("The Democrats are for big government. I experienced that, and I didn't like it.").

"Sweep Right" [via Metafilter]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 09:57 PM | Comments (0)

Andrew Solomon's The Noonday Demon

Andrew Solomon's The Noonday Demon radiates with knowledge and understanding. Combining detailed horrendous experiences of his own depression with science, medicine, history, and anecdote, he offers a very human picture of this debilitating mental illness. If it's self-help you want, this book isn't for you. It's self-reflection because The Noonday Demon provides a broader understanding for those suffering from depression (or "The Blues" as I like to call it). Solomon's personal reflections can offer sufferers a vocabulary for explaining and dealing with own demons.

For those who don't suffer from depression, the book offers insight into the irrational dispair the depressed suffer. From that, a greater empathy can be realized.

At the end of the book, Solomon finds his daily choice to live to be invigorating. He knows his demon will never leave, but he draws strength from it to appreciate his own life.

"Down but Never Out"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:46 AM | Comments (0)

June 13, 2001

With the most powerful politician

With the most powerful politician in Wisconsin history off in Washington, D.C., state Democrats are going after one of Tommy Thompson's most important legacies: school choice. The Democratic-controlled State Senate slashed the voucher amount in half and capped the total number of kids who can take advantage of educational competition. The Democrats can crow all they want about how they want to protect public schools "for the children," but they neglect to help those kids who's lives could be seriously changed if they were allowed to escape shameful public schools. They don't care about the children; they care about the teachers' union that opposes any competition to the monopoly they control.

"Senate Democrats Cut Choice Payments in Half"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:47 PM | Comments (0)

In one of the worst

In one of the worst ideas I've heard in years, Eric Hufschmid, wants nationalized software development.


We could admit that free enterprise is not practical with desktop operating systems, so we could put desktop operating systems in the same category as public water supplies or airlines. Specifically, our government could release the Windows source code to the public domain, and any company that wanted to develop it would be allowed to work on it and sell copies. The government would supervise this in the same manner that they supervise the public water supply.

I want to make two points. First, there isn't a serious problem with desktop operating systems. Sure, I wish Windows was more stable, and it could use more features. But software is a complex creature. While Moore's Law pushes processor performance to higher levels all the time, software development lags because it's hard dealing with a very complex end user--us. Better software development tools are needed to more quickly and effectively make complex programs.

Nationalizing Windows source code would not bring about the torrent of new developers Hufschmid. After seeing Microsoft's crown jewels ripped away from them, what developer would want to create a popular program used by millions. There would be a legitimate fear that the government would steal it in the name of the "public good."

Second, Hufschmid doesn't seem to acknowledge that analogous to "market failure" ("free enterprise is not practical with desktop operating systems") there is "government failure." In Hufschmid's limited model, the public sector can do no wrong. But how I wish that weren't the case. Government schools are pumping out uneducated children across the country; municipal water utilities dump raw sewage into lakes; over $5 trillion has been spent on the war on poverty since 1964, yet the poverty rate is about the same. Government failure exists, and to think such failure wouldn't happen with administrating Windows source code is beyond naïveté.

If you really want to see a screwed up software industry, ask the same institution that runs the IRS to manage software development. I'll trust Bill Gates over any burearcrat or politician any day of the week.

"GPL vs. Linux"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:39 PM | Comments (0)

June 12, 2001

In the world of Leslie

In the world of Leslie James Pickering "property is not human. It is not violent to destroy property." So destroying research labs is justified to protect the planet from those "making a profit off the destruction of the natural environment."

"Eco-Terrorist Attacks Prompt Federal Action"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:56 PM | Comments (0)

June 11, 2001

Art should be about examining

Art should be about examining the human condition. This piece of bad black humor only makes me want to examine the artist's anti-Catholic sentiments.

[via Robot Wisdom]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 02:06 AM | Comments (0)

The Christian Science Monitor is

The Christian Science Monitor is right when they mention that President Bush will have a tough time convincing the Europeans that he is a free-trader while backing possible imported steel sanctions. But remember, his European counterparts who love to subsidize domestic industries aren't pure free-traders either.

"Protectionist Bush?"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:01 AM

June 10, 2001

I joked to a friend

I joked to a friend who is spending the week in Washington State to watch out for earthquakes. Me and my big mouth.

"Moderate Quake Hits Western Washington"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:32 PM | Comments (0)

Janet Reno has announced that

Janet Reno has announced that she will run for governor in Florida. Ooops! Maybe not.

"Janet Reno to Run in Florida Governor's Race in 2002"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:27 PM | Comments (0)

June 09, 2001

Yeah, biotech food will win

Yeah, biotech food will win by default. With so much of it present already and the near impossiblity of preventing contamination, genetically modified food is here to stay. As Professor Jeanne Romero-Severson said, "If your standard is 100 percent pure, you better stop eating right now."

"As Biotech Crops Multiply, Consumers Get Little Choice"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 06:52 PM | Comments (0)

National Review covers Bobby Flay's

National Review covers Bobby Flay's recent Iron Chef victory. Food Network has just arrived on my cable service, and I'm already hooked.

"Grading Bobby Flay"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:21 AM | Comments (0)

June 08, 2001

Web content update: Salon's doomed

Web content update: Salon's doomed too. Bummer...Not!

"Support San Francisco's Finest"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:50 PM | Comments (0)

One half of the biggest

One half of the biggest governor's race in 2002 has announced his candidacy. Jeb Bush wants another term running Florida's government. Now, we wait for Janet "The Child Hater" Reno to shake and quake her way into the race.

"Jeb Bush Says Will Seek Re-Election in Florida"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:33 PM | Comments (0)

Oh the injustice! Suck.com, the

Oh the injustice! Suck.com, the web's roving balloon-popping needle, has shut down. Feed (or FEED) is also "on ice." While both sites were permeated with liberals and lefties, they still had intellectual honesty. Feed in particular offered unique examinations of the future of science, technology, and media. Now, they're gone, but Salon.com, the reigning liberal propaganda machine continues to churn out uninteresting blather.

"Web's Longest Running Daily Column Shuts Down"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:29 PM | Comments (0)

The latest tragedy in Japan

The latest tragedy in Japan proves a gun isn't required for mass murder.

"Man Kills 7 Students at Japan School" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:40 AM | Comments (0)

Amazon.com is invading the space

Amazon.com is invading the space of MP3.com. There are quite a large number of free (legal) music downloads available. I've been finding some nice dance tracks like D:Fuse's "Bodyshock" and Jondi & Spesh's truly transcendent "We Are Connected."

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 12:39 AM | Comments (0)

June 07, 2001

The media orgy over Monday's

The media orgy over Monday's exectution of Timothy McVeigh makes me sick. First, the death penalty is an immoral, blood-thirsty form of justice. The only justifiable reason to kill another human being is self-defense. McVeigh won't be a threat to anyone if he remains locked up in a prison cell for the rest of his life.

Second, the news companies do not need to feed the seemingly insatiable appetite for death. Our culture is enough of a culture of death. Millions of defenseless unborn children are killed every year because they're unwanted. Newborns are abandoned in dumpsters and toilets because raising them would be inconvienent. Kids shoot each other on the streets and in schools. Radical environmental terrorists attack animal research laboratories where work in done to improve human life. Princeton University hired Professor Peter Singer who advocates killing children and the elderly if it will "increase overall happiness." Respect for human life is decreasing at an alarming rate. The networks don't have to add to this obsession with human killing.

"Networks Ready for McVeigh Execution" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 11:54 PM | Comments (0)

If Microsoft president Steve Ballmer

If Microsoft president Steve Ballmer had his way, he wouldn't get Microsoft into the media business. That doesn't mean MS is getting out of MSNBC anytime soon. It does mean we won't be seeing MS turning itself into another AOL Time Warner.

Ballmer's comment does point out the two different paths MS and AOLTW are taking. MS mostly focuses on the technology while AOLTW takes the duel technology/content path. Comparing the two companies' stocks neither MS nor AOLTW have been lighting up the market.

"Ballmer: Would Not Launch MSNBC Again"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:56 PM | Comments (0)

President Bush should stick to

President Bush should stick to his free market gut instincts. In a move that could lead to trade restrictions that would have wide-ranging economic implications, Bush is asking the International Trade Commission to look into possible "unfair" trade practices by foreign steel producers.

Ironically, Bush may be doing this to get the steel industry on his side to push a future free trade pact--expanded NAFTA.

Or is he doing it to appear more "moderate" to liberal Senate Republicans? Isn't a little bit of protection for the steel industry all right as opposed to such an extreme stance as free trade? ;-)

"Bush Takes Protectionist Step For Steel Industry"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:11 AM | Comments (0)

June 05, 2001

John Fund provides another comparison

John Fund provides another comparison of Sen. John McCain to Teddy Roosevelt. Fund guesses that if McCain ran for President as an independent, the best he could do is throw the election into the House of Representatives where party allegiance would stop him from claiming the Presidency.

Fund concludes:


So McCain allies who back an independent candidacy, such as Marshall Wittmann of the Hudson Institute, are faced with a stark reality. Such a race would garner scads of media attention, the oxygen on which Mr. McCain thrives. In bad economic times it could throw the election to a Democrat by crippling the GOP incumbent, as TR did to President Taft in 1912. But such a last hurrah for Mr. McCain would have no realistic chance of winning the White House.

"The McCain Mutiny"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 10:14 PM | Comments (0)

The arrests of President Bush's

The arrests of President Bush's daughters for underage drinking stinks. Here's how John Williams put it:


It may be the first time a restaurant has considered underage drinking worthy of an emergency call in the home of the state's biggest university, said Becky Stewart, emergency services director for the Capital Area Planning Council.

Here are two possibilites. Either the person who made the 911 call did it to get some easy publicity for the resturant, or the person has such indignation toward the President that embarassing Bush's daughters nationally as a way to attack him seems justified.

"The 411 on Chuy's Decision to Call 911"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 08:38 PM | Comments (0)

George Melloan offers this international

George Melloan offers this international perspective:


British Columbia and Italy are but two recent examples of how socialism, a powerful force in the world only 10 years ago, continues to lose appeal with voters. That old black magic of promised free lunches is shedding its power, mainly because voters are beginning to realize that the price of those free lunches is actually rather high.

"Socialists Lose Out"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 08:22 PM | Comments (0)

With churches getting more involved

With churches getting more involved in environmental issues, will Left-wing, anti-religion bigots spew hyperbole that those activists should stop forcing religion into peoples' garages? Or will they only cry out when conservative Christians get involved in public policy (i.e. the now dying Christian Coalition)?

"What Would Jesus Drive?"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 08:16 PM | Comments (0)

June 02, 2001

Sen. John McCain's Left-ward drift

Sen. John McCain's Left-ward drift is inspiring many to make the McCain-Teddy Roosevelt comparison. Both men challenge their party with a progessive mix of creeping government and patriotism. In both cases, the end result is bigger, more instrusive government. Teddy had a blood-thirsty love for war (a historic expander of government) and despised the rich industrialists (thus justifing antitrust laws) who were building the United States into an economic superpower. McCain sees conspiracies of lobbyists on K Street in Washington, D.C. (thus justifing his First Amendment-stomping campaign finance legislation) and wants to reinstitute the draft, but in this case it would be in the lofty name of "national service."

It's time that conservatives re-examine Teddy Roosevelt's record. He wasn't a conservative, and, in fact, ran for President against the conservative Taft that allowed Woodrow Wilson to win the three-way election. Antitrust laws, the nationalization of land (i.e. the national park system), and many new federal regulations (i.e. FDA) are all a part of Teddy's record. An advocate of limited government, he was not. McCain should be free to go around comparing himself to Roosevelt. He just shouldn't try to claim that he's part of a long line of conservative leaders going back to the Bull Moose.

"McCain Is Considering Leaving GOP" [via Drudge]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:59 PM | Comments (2)

Supermodels will try to boost

Supermodels will try to boost up Bible reading like their Wonderbras boost up their bosoms. At least that's the theory behind the Illuminated Bible.

"'Erotic' Pictures to Bring Bible Back into Fashion" [via Off on a Tangent]

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 01:36 PM | Comments (0)