TOTD 12/19: How Leftists Treat Women

About 15 years ago I had lunch with an environmental journalist, writer for LA Weekly among other publications. She wrote a book about Earth First!, the radical enviro-terrorists. That should tell you all you need to know about her political leanings. Besides writing for leftist publications, she also freelanced for outdoorsy mags like Field & Stream and Outdoor Life. Typically, these were run by more conservative or libertarian types.

She found two things:... [Read More]


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Book Review: Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition

“Last Call” by Daniel OkrentThe ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1919, prohibiting the “manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors” marked the transition of the U.S. Federal government into a nanny state, which occupied itself with the individual behaviour of its citizens. Now, certainly, attempts to legislate morality and regulate individual behaviour were commonplace in North America long before the United States came into being, but these were enacted at the state, county, or municipality level. When the U.S. Constitution was ratified, it exclusively constrained the actions of government, not of individual citizens, and with the sole exception of the Thirteenth Amendment, which abridged the “freedom” to hold people in slavery and involuntary servitude, this remained the case into the twentieth century. While bans on liquor were adopted in various jurisdictions as early as 1840, it simply never occurred to many champions of prohibition that a nationwide ban, written into the federal constitution, was either appropriate or feasible, especially since taxes on alcoholic beverages accounted for as much as forty percent of federal tax revenue in the years prior to the introduction of the income tax, and imposition of total prohibition would zero out the second largest source of federal income after the tariff.

As the Progressive movement gained power, with its ambitions of continental scale government and imposition of uniform standards by a strong, centralised regime, it found itself allied with an improbable coalition including the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union; the Methodist, Baptist and Presbyterian churches; advocates of women’s suffrage; the Anti-Saloon League; Henry Ford; and the Ku Klux Klan. Encouraged by the apparent success of “war socialism” during World War I and empowered by enactment of the Income Tax via the Sixteenth Amendment, providing another source of revenue to replace that of excise taxes on liquor, these players were motivated in the latter years of the 1910s to impose their agenda upon the entire country in as permanent a way as possible: by a constitutional amendment. Although the supermajorities required were daunting (two thirds in the House and Senate to submit, three quarters of state legislatures to ratify), if a prohibition amendment could be pushed over the bar (if you’ll excuse the term), opponents would face what was considered an insuperable task to reverse it, as it would only take 13 dry states to block repeal.... [Read More]


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What you used to be able to bring aboard a commercial flight

As some of you know, my Dad designed the Vanguard TV-3 satellite (and its sister, the oldest satellite still in orbit the Vanguard 1).  When TV-3 blew up on national TV. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JK6a6Hkp94o After it cooled down, Dad put in its wooden box and carried it on board a commercial flight back to DC.  It sat in our house and is now in the National Air and Space Museum (see above).... [Read More]

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TOTD 12/18: Forging Our Future

Progressives around the world are bound and determined to destroy the family as the core of society.  What they haven’t factored into their plans is that the future belongs to those who show up, and that means families.

The Next Generation

This photo from July includes my daughter-in-law, who was carrying my grandson at the time.  And recently arrived:... [Read More]


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Politico on Obama, the Iran Deal, and Hezbollah

It’s a long read, but worth the time. Hezbollah funneling cocaine into the US for cash, US attempts to end it, and how they got away with it because ending it interfered with Obama’s desire for the Iran nuclear deal. https://www.politico.com/interactives/2017/obama-hezbollah-drug-trafficking-investigation/


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Radical Transparency

Here is where I plan to take the Ratburger site in the near future.

Too many Web sites are based upon proprietary code or, even if they’re founded on 99% open source code, their developers foolishly keep the implementation of their sites secret.  Why?  Some believe in security through obscurity.  Others fear third parties critiquing their work.... [Read More]

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