Friday, September 24, 2010

10th Amendment rally BUMPED & UPDATED

"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."

Date: Sunday October 10, 2010
1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Michigan State Capitol
100 N. Capitol
Lansing, MI 48933

If you are a small business owner wondering how you can afford to comply with new 1099 reporting requirements, you need to attend this rally. If you are an individual who objects to the federal mandate that you must purchase health insurance, you should attend this rally. If you are outraged by the federal government's unilateral abrogation of contracts, you need to attend this rally. If you are nervous about what the explosion of federal spending means for national security and the future freedoms of your offspring, you need to attend this rally. If you think federal government bureaucrats are more likely to destroy the health care industry, the automobile industry, the energy industry and the financial industry than to help them, you should attend this rally. If you think we should be less concerned about the enforcement of federal law by the states than the security of our borders, you should be at the Capitol grounds on October 10th.

If you want federal officials to know you are fed up with their arrogance, you need to tell them. Publicly. Attend this rally and be counted.

Your presence will help reinforce the message, to politicians of all parties, that the federal government's intrusion into the lives of its employers has become excessive. This message has to be delivered continuously. They have very short memories. They are only just beginning to be frightened.

The date, of course, is just 3 weeks prior to what is probably the most consequential election of your lifetime. It will be topped only by 2012.

In the long term, even more important for your children and grandchildren is the idea that the 10th Amendment matters.

Senate won't vote to stop the tax hike

...but they will vote on the so-called "Paycheck Fairness Act" before the elections: Another business tax hike, gift to trial lawyers and regulatory quagmire.

On September 14, TOC noted that the male/female "wage-gap" is non-existent. Christina Hoff Sommers also pointed this out on September 21 in the New York Times. Fair Pay Isn’t Always Equal Pay
... a 2009 analysis of wage-gap studies commissioned by the Labor Department evaluated more than 50 peer-reviewed papers and concluded that the aggregate wage gap “may be almost entirely the result of the individual choices being made by both male and female workers.”

...Universities, for example, typically pay professors in their business schools more than they pay those in the school of social work, citing market forces as the justification. But according to the gender theory that informs this bill, sexist attitudes led society to place a higher value on male-centered fields like business than on female-centered fields like social work.
These apparent choices, made by smart women, are actually forced on them by the patriarchal conspiracy:
And this is how those choices manifest themselves in the workplace:

The usual suspects support this legislation, because they think only their choices are the right choices. Call Senate Now for Paycheck Fairness 

And tell them to stop the Bill.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Arlen Specter in a dress?

A mental image everyone could do without, but a good question when Jonah Goldberg asks it about Lisa Murkowski - here. It's short, RTWT.

Seems like the GOP Establishment "big tent," is entirely too small to contain the egotistic sense of entitlement of a Mike Castle, Charlie Crist or Lisa Murkowski.

Arlen Specter (R2D2 - in Taranto's excellent classification) was the template.  To hell with Specter: Done.  To hell with Castle: Done.

And to hell with the rest of them:  In process.

Finally, it's tragic that RINO poster-child Lindsey Graham isn't up for a vote until 2014, but we have a long memory.

Bad link fixed. Sep-19 7:53. Sorry.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Who is electable?

Well, lots of people the establishment told us were not. And now, many establishment types are telling us Christine O'Donnell's victory was pyrrhic: An ill advised spasm of childish petulance. They rush to tell us that William F. Buckley would have disapproved.

Buckley suggested this rule: Support the most conservative candidate who is electable.

In light of d'Tocqueville's observation that a Democracy will tend toward statism, the Buckley rule can be a strategy of incremental retreat. The most conservative available candidate may drift leftward as the voters entitle themselves and Parties seek power rather than good governance. This consequence is quite evident today. 

Another problem: Taken as absolute by dedicated partisans, it will fail to take advantage of a period where the determination of who is "electable" is tremendously uncertain. The rule, therefore, tends to restrict the possible in favor of the "certain." Following it we should have ignored Scott Brown's candidacy, and Rand Paul's. We should have ceded Wisconsin to Russ Feingold. Chris Cristie should never have run. Mario Rubio, electable as a state Senator and not as a US Senator, should not have challenged the GOP favorite.

I do not think Mr. Buckley would be pleased with these references to his "rule." Mr. Buckley, after all, was a strong supporter of Barry Goldwater's presidential candidacy when Nelson Rockefeller was arguably more electable, and as far to Lyndon Johnson's right as is Castle to Coons'. I do not remember Mr. Buckley objecting to Goldwater's acceptance speech line: "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

Goldwater lost, but it is widely accepted that Ronald Reagan would never have been president if not for the work Goldwater did to prepare the way. It is a multi-year game and we accept the unprincipled, mediocre party hack at our peril. Electing a Mike Castle is an incremental defeat. It defines the deviancy from principle up.

Mr. Buckley never intended a refusal to test the limits of the possible. He certainly never believed electing Republicans was job one.

Go Green! a cheer for the MSU Spartans, not an economic policy.  

If government were capable of predicting which investments would produce jobs they would also be capable of predicting which tax regime would always produce a surplus without damage to economic growth.

“…Funny Numbers They Pull Out of Their Backside”

The fact that the numbers are bogus doesn't stop unions from whining, about stimulus-exported "green jobs" however: 'Green' jobs no longer golden in stimulus

The Department of Energy estimated that 82,000 [?] jobs have been created and has acknowledged that as much as 80 percent of some green programs, including $2.3 billion of manufacturing tax credits, went to foreign firms that employed workers primarily in countries including China, South Korea and Spain, rather than in the United States.

Peter Morici, a business professor at the University of Maryland, said much of the green stimulus funding was "squandered."

"Large grants to build green buildings don't generate many new jobs, except for a few architects," he said. "Subsidies for windmills and solar panels created lots of jobs in China," but few at home.

In one of several embarrassing disclosures for the administration, a report last fall by American University's Investigative Reporting Workshop found that 11 U.S. wind farms used their grants to purchase 695 out of 982 wind turbines from overseas suppliers...

In a trade complaint against China on Thursday, the United Steelworkers union charged that Beijing is trying to corner the market on green jobs by showering billions of dollars of subsidies on domestic producers and discriminating against foreign firms and goods.
The irony of this complaint, while we're subsidizing ethanol, windmills and batteries to the tune of billions, appears lost on the USW.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

10-10-10 tea party rally

10th Amendment Tea Party 10-10-10 In Lansing
Join your fellow Michigan patriots as we support our 10th Amendment Sovereignty rights against Unconstitutional Federal over reach such as ObamaCare, a prime example of national law that oversteps state jurisdiction and results in the loss of rights of Michigan’s citizens!
Date: Sunday October 10, 2010
1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Michigan State Capitol
100 N. Capitol
Lansing, MI 48933

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Message from Delaware

Christine O'Donnell's Delaware primary victory sent a strong message to the GOP establishment; the establishment we've all griped about. It will be on the mind of every pol for the next 2 years. We should endeavor to keep them focused on this message for the next 2 decades.

Yes, an O'Donnell loss could cost the GOP control of the senate next year, but it's a multi-decade game we can't win unless we insist on principle. We've been gradually losing for decades because we have failed to do that.

The odds seem long for an O'Donnell victory in November, but a year ago, you would have been considered delusional if you suggested the GOP could take back the senate. A year ago, Republican control of the the House was a pipe dream.

The message from Delaware, is: Look out. Look out, Lindsey Graham. Look out, Richard Lugar. Look out, Michael Steele. Look out, Olympia Snowe. Look out, John Dingel. Look out, Barbara Boxer. Look out, Harry Reid.

Given Bob Bennett, Lisa Murkowski, Charlie Crist (Rubio 43, Crist 27, Meek 21) and even Rick Lazio, the GOP establishment should be listening attentively. They're not. The NRSC and Mike Castle will not support O'Donnell in the general.

That makes it all the more important we do. Simply showing support is a strong message, a better than "establishment wisdom" showing in the general election would be a very strong message and a win would represent seismic shock.

I have made my small contribution to O'Donnell. You may wish to consider doing so also, if you'd like to see a GOP paying attention to principle over pragmatism.

Update, 1:15PM
Changed their minds on that one, anyway:
NRSC Chair Cornyn Commits to Backing O'Donnell

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wage gap trope, sigh...

You can search the Lansing State Journal's web site today for the phrase "gender wage gap," but you will get no results. This, despite the fact of the headline on page 3A: "Gender wage gap narrowing," a story by Dennis Cauchon of USA today, where it was titled "Gender pay gap is smallest on record."

Perhaps excluding this from local search is because the story appeared yesterday at USA Today, and the LSJ is embarrassed to be recycling it a day later. I can't think of another reason, because I seriously doubt the LSJ is at all discomfited by the continuing distortion of this supposed wage gap. It is not as if I have not pointed it out to them.

Letter to LSJ:

Regarding Susan Stock's article of November 16th, "Wage inequities persist for Michigan women"; this is the essentially the same story you published on April 20th.

The 20 year old anecdote about wage discrimination as the lead seems about the only change, but you definitely get points for consistency.

The same basic facts are missing that were missing in April. For example, this 'study' utterly ignores such useful variables as industry, occupation, continuous years in the workforce, level of education, field of study, experience, and number of hours worked.

The authors of the study are another far-left advocacy group, whose president, Heidi Hartmann, has said: "The marriage of Marxism and feminism has been like the marriage of husband and wife depicted in English common law: Marxism and feminism are one, and that one is Marxism."

A little research and skepticism on behalf of your readers would be appreciated.
They also published a 600 word OpEd I wrote on the same subject.

If you include the factors mentioned in the 3rd paragraph of the letter above, the "wage gap" disappeared long before 2004, if it ever existed. 

For example, men average 5.6 more hours work per week than women, or about 7 weeks a year. In 2008 there were 1,277 male work-related deaths for every 100 female work-related deaths. Maybe some danger pay is due.

Also, let us look at the educational preferences of the females (who outnumber men) in PhD programs, and then at why some of those PhD preferences are what they are. 

Earnings-wise these graphs speak for themselves (thanks to Carpe Diem).

To those who claim the difference in that last graph is due to an oppressive patriarchy, I refer you here. Keep reading after you get there.  

This SAT score difference says nothing about individual women, whose math skills may be every bit as good as any man's.  What it does reflect is that despite the fact that males disproportionately occupy the very lowest areas of SAT scores, they also occupy the vast majority of the very uppermost.

There is no wage gap.

Fed Spending

Leaving "transparency" to the government gets you what you would expect.

Clearspending has been added to the blogroll. Use the link, and then check out the Sunlight Foundation.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Fiddling on the edges of Statism

State Senate Finance Committee Chair Nancy Cassis (R-Novi) says, "Legislation needed to address MEGA audit findings

MEGA is the Michigan Economic Growth Authority, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC).  The Senator is concerned because:
A major finding by the state auditors was that the strategic fund's procedures were not sufficient to validate the summary information detailing job claim and wage data maintained by the companies. Auditors reported 10 of 15 of those sampled, or 67 percent, of companies failed to submit all requested information needed to verify the data for the tax credit and often relied on self-reporting for new jobs and payroll figures.
Inadequate procedures? That's what needs to be corrected? I don't think so. MEGA doesn't need new legislation and MEDC doesn't need reform. They need to be eliminated.
I am extremely concerned about the impression of MEDC inflating job creation numbers in press releases, especially with the strategic fund's failure to verify job and wage numbers before giving out a number of refundable tax credits. These actions over time could significantly erode the public's trust and result in an inability to measure the program's effectiveness to create jobs.
It's maddening that Senator Cassis accepts the idea that the State of Michigan should be picking economic winners and losers. It's laughable she's focused on "measuring the program's effectiveness to create jobs," when, in fact, no government agency has ever done so. 

Sadly, her views accord with those of GOP gubernatorial candidate Rick Snyder, who is calling for MEDC "reform." It's worth noting Snyder was MEDC's first Director, and after leaving that position was himself a beneficiary of $7.5 million in MEDC funds.  

The GOP message? If the right people are in charge, corporatism is a good idea.  Vote for us, we can do a better job of managing the corporate welfare state.