Saturday, January 22, 2005

Gun Control Nazis

I wrote two blog entries earlier, but deleted them, because things just didn't add up. Glad I waited. JMPP didn't.

'Cause, there was this Fox News story about Michael Moore's bodyguard being arrested for trying to carry an unlicensed gun onto a plane.

That is not exactly what happened. Here appears to be the accurate story.

Some observations, now that I have thought about this.

1. Michael Moore thinks that we should not have guns. At least, not handguns. But he employs a guy who has a handgun. Does this mean that only people who are rich enough to have some caddy, who is also armed, should have access to the means of protecting themselves? This is actually a side issue, though, at least in my opinion.

2. The real deal is that...The security guard did NOTHING wrong, not a firetrucking thing. The gun is licensed and fully registered, and he is correctly documented for concealed carry. He just didn't happen to have a license in New York. But he was trying to leave New York, and anyway airports are now federal territory. The gun was locked, unloaded, and in his checked baggage, not carry on. Further, on presenting himself at the check-in counter, he immediately informed the agent (in accordance with the law) that he had the gun.

BOTTOM LINE: There is an excellent chance that some cop, after after asking some questions and finding out that the poor guard worked for Michael Moore SOMETIMES, decided to be a jerk and arrest him. Apparently this Dickhead Tracy (or someone) also immediately called Fox News, who equally immediately wrote a misleading and nearly libelous story.

This is what happens when you have laws that intrude on personal liberties, including those guaranteed by the 2nd Amendment. (And this wasn't even a private weapon. The guy is a professional security guard). Cops, with nothing to do and a sense of personal importance, get to pursue their own little political agendas (in this case, conservative: "Arrest him! Call Fox News!"). It's tempting to think that the real bad guy here is the cop, but in fact it is the law. End the increasingly sticky web of laws and rules that are designed to "help" us, but are really just mechanisms of discretionary and arbitrary social control. You may think you want gun control, and racial epithet control, and bugger all control, but police discretion will always be used to punish the least powerful in society. Life-arrangers always say, "Gosh, that is not what I meant to have happen," but that is what always happens. If you don't want to go to Chicago, don't get on that train.

Michael Moore should be embarrassed. Not because he employs a man with a gun; I'm sure there are actual threats against Moore, and he has every right to protect himself. No, Moore should be ashamed that a man with a legitimate need for a gun got jerked around by people enforcing regulations Moore avidly supports. It's not an accident, it's not an abuse, it is the thing itself.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Inauguration Highlights

On Bush 2.0...

Biggest Bush speech component:

Our country has accepted obligations that are difficult to fulfill, and would be dishonorable to abandon. Yet because we have acted in the great liberating tradition of this nation, tens of millions have achieved their freedom. And as hope kindles hope, millions more will find it. By our efforts, we have lit a fire as well - a fire in the minds of men. It warms those who feel its power, it burns those who fight its progress, and one day this untamed fire of freedom will reach the darkest corners of our world.

You know, I believe in the freedom thing, but that "burns those who fight its progress" thing... that's a little aggressive than I'm happy with. Fire is not always good. I'm not buying the Bush/Hiter comparison, I'm just saying that you shouldn't play with fire.

Best protest highlights:

Houston: We have an equation: W+Ahnold=disaster. I bet this guy thinks he supports democracy. The problem is that so many people are too stupid to hold the correct views. Democracy means, "Do what I say." My advice? Throw in an intercept, and some elasticities (what is the disaster responsiveness of W, compared to Ahnold? Surely not equal, right?) Should be something more like A+m1*W+m2*Ahnold=disaster; might need to use some MLE technique, since disaster is a qualitative variable, and the effects are likely to be nonlinear.

At least this guy knew what he was doing; trite, perhaps, but it's a real protest. I have always liked people who angrily burn the American flag, since they apparently hate the only country that allows this kind of protest, and support other nations where such a display would get them imprisoned. Here, they are having a little trouble with the flame of revolution. There are plenty of Sunnis who would be happy to help. Of course, then they'd burn YOU, and hang you from a bridge. That's not a problem, is it?

The upside down flags are a sign of distress. But then what does this upside down drum mean? Distressing music, and costumes? And what is going on with the dancers? Usually, when I see someone make that kind of move, it's a woman, and she's holding on to a pole. (I've actually NEVER seen that; Mrs. Kgrease would not approve).

Best smirk: GWB, for pretty much the whole day. I know, he can't help it, but good lord. When he smiles, he looks pretty good. But that crooked smirk is so obnoxious. It's an old problem; check this from 1999.

Best line: Overall, the best moment was when Paula Zahn, on CNN, summed up the atmosphere as she saw it: "So many balls, so little time." The other people on camera just stared at their shoes. In a way, she's right, of course. Hey, hey, Paula.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

What the Heck?

What is Shujaat on about with this?

Things I liked:
1. The most excellent soundtrack.
2. The butt cracks of the American soldiers. Very realistic.
3. The disembodied foot trying to vote. Very Fellini.

But, what is going on here? The poor guy trying to vote is killed by the Americans, showing their ass. They kill him twice. Then he gets nailed by the insurgents. After they cut him up, the foot goes to vote. Is democracy gaining a toehold?

Won't you help me? I'm a simple professional wrestler. I don't understand deep stuff.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Moonves Does NOT Rule Out Mungowitz to Replace Rather

CBS poobah Leslie Moonves apparently did not specifically rule out hiring Jon Stewart to replace Dan Rather. Drudge ran a picture, suggesting this means that Stewart might be hired.

But, here is something everyone appears to have missed. NOWHERE did Moonves specifically rule out hiring K. G. Mungowitz to replace Dan Rather. (See?) Coincidence? I think not. This means that I have about the same chance as that preening dickhead Stewart of getting Rather's chair. I can't wait.

Monday, January 17, 2005

I wanna be a cowboy, baby....

I don't read Dem Underground much, but (see #10) they did nail this.

Hard to tell that story from something on "The Onion." BTW: Today is Kid Rock's birthday. Martin would be so pleased.

Speaking of Democratic Underground--here is IMAO's description:
DU is actually a digital bulletin board and not a blog. It was started by Shannon Daughty of the University of Georgia as psychological experiment of what happens when a number of people suffering for diagnosable paranoid delusions interact online. So far, results are inconclusive.

Q-o'-d-w-III: Sophie's Choice...Not

"On the subway, Peter asked, 'Shouldn't we consider having triplets?' And I had this adverse reaction: 'This is why they say it's the woman's choice, because you think I could just carry triplets. That's easy for you to say, but I'd have to give up my life.' Not only would I have to be on bed rest at 20 weeks, I wouldn't be able to fly after 15. I was already at eight weeks. When I found out about the triplets, I felt like: It's not the back of a pickup at 16, but now I'm going to have to move to Staten Island. I'll never leave my house because I'll have to care for these children. I'll have to start shopping only at Costco and buying big jars of mayonnaise. Even in my moments of thinking about having three, I don't think that deep down I was ever considering it." -- Amy Richards, an abortion rights advocate, describes her decision to kill two of her babies, leaving her with a single baby, instead of having triplets

(From John Hawkins' quotelist)

I think when people talk about "the life of the mother" as a justification for abortion, they don't mean that going to Costco is the same as death. I don't often find Michelle Malkin interesting, but here is some follow-up.

BONUS: A new definition of liberal, from Steve Margolis, through Newmark's Door. That Steve...

Tough Act to Follow. Apparently.

Remembering MLK.

Jesse Jackson does the fire and brimstone thing.

Excerpt from the AP story:

"You can be out of slavery and out of segregation and have the right to vote and starve to death without access to capital and industry," Jackson said.

He added, "You got the birthday. But do you have the legacy? The legacy is to fight for jobs, justice, health care, education and end to war."

"It's easy to admire Dr. King," Jackson told the 650 people at the church. "It's a challenge to follow him."

Apparently actually following the good Dr. is in fact such a challenge that the Rev. gave up some time ago. Running a "Pay me or I'll call you racist" extortion racket is a full time job.

Bill Cosby, by contrast, is angry. Angry at Detroit.

Cosby urged Detroiters to "march against" the problems facing the city.
"Get up. Do something," urged the 67-year-old Cosby. "Get up. Remove this reputation. You've got a reputation and it stinks."


Cosby has been traveling across the country in the past few months, speaking to predominantly black audiences about the need for personal responsibility and better parenting skills in African-American homes.

"The poverty and victim pimps will tell you, you don't have time to go out to the schools" to demand a better education for your children, Cosby said.


"Poverty and victim pimps"? I think he means Jesse Jackson.

What is the legacy of Dr. King? What should we do?