Friday, October 24, 2014

Hunting Season

For John, BLUFWe are a diverse nation, with diverse interests, as it should be.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

On City Life this AM the "Guest" was US Senate Candidate Brian Herr.  One person Texted in asking about the Second Amendment.  Another contacted the Producer [Mr John McDonough] to ask about hunting.

I thought the Hunting question was interesting.  It touched on a cultural nuance, a segment of our society.  It brought to mind the book on how the Democrat Party had lost its roots and lost many rural voters, Dear Hunting With Jesus.  Both Brian Herr and I are originally from Western Pennsylvania and hunting is a big deal there.  Brian talked about how the first day of hunting season the local schools closed, as high schoolers went off with their Dads to hunt meat for the winter.  I am a couple of decades older than Brian, and I remember my Father telling me about how the Steel Mills in Johnstown shut down for the first day of bear season.

I am not sure what the person who asked the question was looking for, unless it was to make the point that in large parts of our nation hunting is a big deal and restrictions on Second Amendment rights can crush that part of our culture.

Frankly, I have never hunted, but I owned a 22 Rifle in High School (Rifle Team) and have shot skeet.  When I was young my Father took me out on the Atlantic for fishing.

I know a local woman with a Concealed Carry Permit, because sometimes she carries money and wants protection.  I know a local man who does competitive shooting as a sport.  There are many reasons to own a gun.  But, as Mr Herr noted, the Second Amendment is not about the right of every citizen to own a nuclear weapon.

That said, in my mind the Second Amendment is a sort of weapon of last resort in the event the Government goes off the rails.  I doubt there will be a need any time in the future.

Regards  —  Cliff

  Mr Herr, pronounced "her" told me that while his parents came to the US from Ireland, and thus they were Irish, at some point his forefathers, or some of them, had come from Germany and the "Herr Schmidt" type name had been contracted to "Herr".  Like my late friend, Bill Tuel, who was really Bill Toole, but his family had gone to France during the "Flight of the Wild Geese" and his name had taken on a French spelling.
  For the person in NSA who is looking at the print outs, I am not some sort of a gun cult person seeing tyranny just around the corner.  I don't see any threat from the US Government, now or in the foreseeable future.  On the other hand, if we lived in Mexico there might be some need of one kind or another.  For example the villagers who have armed themselves to fight the Cartels.  And in the last Century rebellion against dictatorship.  And in the Century before that the fight against the French, who had invaded and taken over the Government of Mexico.

The Political Woman Gap

For John, BLUFNot everything the Democrats tell us about women voters is well centered.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Reporter and opinionator Ms Mona Charen talks about "What women want", in an article in The Washington Examiner.

Here is the paragraph out of the article that is most interesting:

If Americans were marrying at the same rate as they did in the past, this increase in the percentage of women voters wouldn’t help Democrats, because married women tend to vote Republican. Fifty-three percent of married women voted for Mitt Romney, for example, and 51 percent supported Ken Cuccinelli in the 2013 Virginia governor’s race. But marriage is declining. Whereas 65 percent of American adults were married in 1980, just 51 percent of adults were married in 2012. Among the 20- to 34-year-old cohort, 57 percent never married.
I wonder what local Lawyer Renee Aste would make of this?

Hat tip to the Instapundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Potential Ebola Growth Cureves

For John, BLUFContainment of Ebola is important or it could grow out of control.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is a set of charts by The International New York Times on the spread of Ebola.  Below is an interesting section of the article.  The accompanying graphic is at the link.  Nice example of exponential growth in the right hand chart.
How many people could become infected?
The W.H.O. reported on Oct. 14 that the number of new Ebola cases could reach 10,000 per week by December.  The C.D.C. published a report in September that outlined a worst-case situation, in which the total number of cases could reach 1.4 million in four months.  The C.D.C.’s model is based on data from August and includes cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone, but not Guinea (where counts have been unreliable).  It also projects further into the future and adds ranges to account for underreporting of cases.
Ebola can be stopped.  Nigeria has been declared Ebola-free by the World Health Organization, in large measure thanks to a heroic physician, Ms Stella Ameyo Adadevoh, RIP.

Regards  —  Cliff

CNN News Coverage Error

For John, BLUFDouble standards.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Carol Costello apologizes.

It is a step in the proper direction.

Regards  —  Cliff

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Beware the DA

For John, BLUFGood idea, needs to be thought through.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

On City Life this morning there was a discussion of fighting crime and one of the issues was getting the District Attorneys to actually fight to put convicted criminals in jail.  This issue has evolved over the last few weeks, from what the police are doing to what are the judges are doing to, finally, what the DAs are doing.

That is the real locus of the problem.  The District Attorneys make the decisions to make the deals.  They often view these things through the lens of what is good for their office.  At the same time we find that with the continuing proliferation of laws we have truly become a "Ham Sandwich Nation", a nation in which Federal and Local Government Attorneys can indict just about anybody for this or that infraction of some obscure law.

Back to City Life, the suggestion was made that since other efforts are not getting the attention of the DAs, we need to talk to our Representatives on Beacon Hill and have them cut budgets.  At the end of the day money talks and mere rhetoric walks.  I think this is an excellent proposal, but we really do need to talk seriously with our Representatives, because often we just get MOTS, more of the same.

I would add a note of caution.  Way out in Texas the Governor, Rick Perry, used his line item veto to deal with a DA who had become a fairly notorious public drunk, Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.  For that Governor Perry has been indicted on two felony counts of abuse of power.

Regards  —  Cliff

US Rep Debate, MA 3rd CD

For John, BLUFWe are getting a second debate, helping to explicate issues for the voters.  Good.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

There will be at least one more debate between our US Representative, Niki Tsongas, and her challenger, Ann Wofford.  This debate has been set up by The [Lowell] Sun (thank you Sun editors).

The date and time is Tuesday, the 28th, at 10:00 AM.

The venue is the Conference Center on Fort Devens.

31 Andrews Parkway
Devens, MA 01434

More details when I get them.

Regards  —  Cliff

Taxing the Internet By the Ignorant

For John, BLUFTaxes should be used to encourage new economic areas, not to freeload off them.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Over at the blog site Samizdata blogger Perry de Havilland wants to know, "How do you say “astounding stupidity” in Hungarian?".  The cause of Mr de Havilland's outrage is the fact that the Hungarian Parliament has just voted to put a tax on the transfer of data on the Internet.

As the blog post points out, this is a way of stifling high tech industry and the creation of new ideas.  But, Hungary is drifting away from the ideal of a Liberal Democracy (not a Progressive Government, but a Liberal Democracy).

The reality is that taxes create social policy.  They can encourage or discourage economic growth in certain areas.  Taxes must be thoughtfully applied.  And, of course, they should not be so complex the rules and rulings take up a bookshelf of space in some lawyer's or accountant's office.

Yes, we absolutely need taxes, to pay for our government's actions, but we need to think about the impact of our taxes.

Hat tip to Samizdata.

Regards  —  Cliff