Archives for April 2012
Last week, Sen. Dick Lugar (R-IN) squared off against his primary opponent, Richard Mourdock, in the only debate before voters head to the polls on Tuesday, May 8th.
Since the primary is hotly contested with establishment Republicans going to bat for Lugar and conservative and Tea Party groups backing Mourdock, you’d think that the debate would be contentious. But press reports indicate that the debate was relatively mild with Lugar unable to make any headway against Mourdock, who did well against the incumbent Senator.
In case you missed it, you can watch the debate below. You can also checkout some takeaways the debate between Lugar and Mourdock via Politico:
District B-13 is not an alien movie like District 9. Instead it is a 2004 French Film which reminds us that any government today against its own citizens just like the Nazis perpetrated agaisnt the Jews during WWII.
I give District B-13 ”3.5 beacons of Liberty out of five”. It has a great message about the evil that government will perpetrate against its own people. And that by exposing the dastardly plans of the politicians lives can be saved.
District B-13 is the name of the inner city slum near Paris that has been walled off by the French Government. It is an inner city war zone, where the drug dealers have taken over and all government presence has fled including the police. The innocent civilians are left in there with the drug dealers to fend for themselves.
One Resident Leito, played by one of the founders of Parkour, is a vigilante defending his building in District B-13 against Taha the local drug kingpin. The movie starts with Leito flushing down 2o kilos of Taha’s coke. Needless to say Taha doesn’t take too kindly to the destruction of his property and kidnaps Leito’s sister in retaliation.
Using awesome Parkour moves Leito infiltrates Taha’s lair, rescues his sister and escapes with Taha’s men in hot pursuit. Leito and his sister make it to the police station in the wall separating B-13 from the rest of Paris. There they hope to have the cops arrest Taha. But instead the cop in charge arrests Leito and allows Taha to take his sister back into District B-13.
Netflix fascinates me. How a company that has done such a great job of delivering a quality product to customers in an array of methods can get into so much trouble with its customer base is mind boggling.
Remember last year when Netflix raised prices and infuriated their customer base? Customers got furious. Then Netflix announced that DVD rentals would be going to a new service Qwikster. Separate web site, separate queues, separate credit card charges, incredibly stupid name…yeah, that sounds like a good idea. So Netflix announced Quikster. Then after customers responded in ways that could only be described as blowback, it backed off of the idea in a poorly written blog post from Reed Hastings, the Netflix CEO.
Somehow after demonstrating amazing levels of stupidity time after time, Netflix has managed to keep customers. Sure, it lost some customers in the midst of that price change chaos, but the company is still doing just fine. This is probably because despite a history of poor decisions, the company really does deliver a quality product. So these poor decisions don’t really have too much of an impact on revenue.
But you can only go to that well so many times before it runs dry.
This week it was announced that Netflix had formed a political action committee (PAC). Immediately people all over the Internet were (rightfully) concerned that this company that supported that horrid SOPA/PIPA legislation was going to be pushing for its passage again.
At some point today, the Senate will take up the so-called “Buffett Rule,” the proposed tax on higher-income earners that President Barack Obama and Democrats say is a matter of “fairness” in the tax code. No one expects that the proposal will pass, and even if it did, the House wouldn’t take it up.
President Obama has been discussing the Buffett Rule on the campaign trail, backing off earlier assertions that it would help raise revenue in a significant way. Recently, he claimed that Ronald Reagan, an iconic figure in the conservative movement, would have supported the proposal:
President Barack Obama said the White House proposed “Buffet Rule” could be named the “Reagan Rule,” referring to former Republican President Ronald Reagan as a “wild-eyed, Socialist, tax hiking class warrior.”
“This president gave another speech where he said it was ‘crazy’ — that’s a quote — that certain tax loopholes make it possible for multimillionaires to pay nothing, while a bus driver was paying 10 percent of his salary,” Obama said at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building Wednesday. “That wild-eyed, socialist, tax-hiking class warrior was Ronald Reagan.”
Obama floated the idea of renaming the “Buffet Rule,” which would require individuals making over $1 million annually to pay at least 30 percent in federal income taxes.
“If it’ll help convince folks in Congress to make the right choice, we could call it the ‘Reagan Rule’ instead of the ‘Buffett Rule,’” Obama said.
While we’ve been focusing a lot lately on ObamaCare thanks to the recent Supreme Court hearing and new studies from the Congressional Budget Office and Charles Blahous, April is the sixth anniversary of the passage of RomneyCare — the plan pushed by then-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, which later became the blueprint for ObamaCare.
Over at Reason on Friday, Peter Suderman marked RomneyCare’s birthday by explaining how the law has been a fiscal nightmare for the Bay State:
Over the last several months, libertarians have taken shots from all sides. During the Republican primary, Rick Santorum made it clear that he wasn’t fond of the libertarian viewpoint on nearly any matter in public policy and expressed concern about the philosophical influence in the Tea Party movement. Santorum even as far as knocking the Goldwater view of limited government.
More recently, libertarians have been wrongly attacked by Van Jones, a self-described communist and former Obama Administration appointee. During an Occupy Wall Street event, Jones called libertarians “bigots” and claimed that we are anti-gay rights; accusations that are completely false.
Now Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) is getting in his shots.
Facing a fate similar to that of his former colleague, Bob Bennett, Hatch recently told NPR that he is “doggone offended” by “radical libertarians” that have gotten involved in the Senate primary in Utah:
This year, major conservative groups announced their intention of defeating Hatch — who they deemed too moderate. FreedomWorks has reportedly spent at least $670,000 attacking Hatch this cycle.
But the long-time senator isn’t sitting on his hands. Hatch told NPR’s Howard Berkes, “These people are not conservatives. They’re not Republicans.”
You have to hand to it to Ron Paul. He virtually no shot at the nomination now that Rick Santorum has dropped out, making Mitt Romney the presumptive nominee. Nevertheless, Paul continues to push on, being greeted by dedicated supporters nearly everywhere he goes.
And while Paul, like Newt Gingrich, will stick around for the time being, his supporters aren’t going anywhere. In fact, one backer has decided to take his support for Paul to the video game console:
H/T: Buzz Feed
I didn’t start the night by discussing the negative social and economic impacts of prohibition with my 11 year old daughter, but something she said sparked my memory, and that’s where we ended up. It’s a fun story – one that even my parents, who still work at the school I attended, have probably never heard.
I was in 5th grade, and my best friend Chris learned from the kids in his neighborhood how to make some really nifty little paper gliders. I looked online for a picture of one last night, but Google failed me. They looked like a cross between a paper sports car and a Star Wars pod racer. Yeah, they were pretty cool.
Chris taught me how to make them, and we were the envy of that 5th grade classroom. We gave a few away, keeping the secret paper folding recipe to ourselves. Fortunately for us, our classmates weren’t able to (or weren’t smart enough) to reverse engineer the design.
Being the clever little entrepreneurs that we were, we started selling them for a quarter each. Demand grew, so we would devote our spare lunch time to making them – in secret, of course, to preserve our intellectual property – and then each night we would color them with special designs or patterns to make each one unique. As demand and popularity grew, the price rose to fifty cents.
We were happy with our extra spending money, and our classmates were happy with their purchases. It was win/win for everyone, but our teacher found out about our business venture and decided we shouldn’t be selling our goods to our classmates. She shut down our production, and an interesting thing happened: their popularity and demand were higher than ever.
As polls show President Barack Obama to be vulnerable on gas prices, someone is finally getting the message and hitting him on the issues. American Crossroads released an ad this week hitting Obama for blaming others and doing nothing to easy the pain Americans are feeling at the pump:
And now that gas prices are rising faster under Obama than they did under Jimmy Carter, expect to see more ads like this during the summer.
It’s been a rough go at the Republican nomination for Newt Gingrich. He enjoyed a bump in the polls back in the December as conservatives were still trying to find a viable alternative to Mitt Romney. But when Rick Santorum was able to gain traction in the race, Gingrich struggled mightily, winning only his home state of Georgia and neighboring South Carolina to date.
Now that Santorum is out of the race, Gingrich is again trying to convince Republicans to back him. Not long after sending an e-mail claiming to be the “last conservative standing,” it was reported that Gingrich’s campaign bounced a $500 check to get on the primary ballot in Utah:
GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich might fail to appear on the Utah primary ballot after a check for the required filing fee bounced, according to media reports.
The check for $500 bounced on March 27, Utah state election director Mark Thomas told ABC News, which first reported the story.
“Our office immediately attempted to contact the campaign and the designated agent, but no phone calls were returned,” Thomas said, according to ABC.
“We also asked the state Republican Party to assist us, but they also could not get into communication with them, although I do not know how they attempted to contact them,” he added.
According to Bloomberg, Gingrich’s campaign has had severe fundraising woes and is $4.5 million in debt. However, Gingrich insists that he is going to take his campaign to the Republican National Convention in August where he hopes to influence the party’s 2012 platform. After all, that’s about the only thing he can hope to do at this point.