Thankful Vittles

Over the years I have written many Thanksgiving posts, with two primary themes. The first being how the Pilgrims, initially believing that communism, a pooling of resources and labor, would best fit their needs. On the brink of starvation and ruination, they changed course and tried a little free market capitalism;

The most able and fit young men in Plymouth thought it an “injustice” that they were paid the same as those “not able to do a quarter the other could.” Women, meanwhile, viewed the communal chores they were required to perform for others as a form of “slavery.”

On the brink of extermination, the Colony’s leaders changed course and allotted a parcel of land to each settler, hoping the private ownership of farmland would encourage self-sufficiency and lead to the cultivation of more corn and other foodstuffs.

As Adam Smith would have predicted, this new system worked famously. “This had very good success,” Bradford reported, “for it made all hands very industrious.” In fact, “much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been” and productivity increased. “Women,” for example, “went willingly into the field, and took their little ones with them to set corn.”

And so it began.

The other theme had to do with George Washington’s Thanksgiving Proclamation, this symbiotic existence of religion and politics separates us as a nation and one of the things I believe make us great;

In setting aside a day for Thanksgiving, Washington established a non-sectarian tone for these devotions and stressed political, moral, and intellectual blessings that make self-government possible, in addition to personal and national repentance. Although the First Amendment prevents Congress from establishing a religion or prohibiting its free exercise, Presidents, as well as Congress, have always recognized the American regard for sacred practices and beliefs. Thus, throughout American history, Presidents have offered non-sectarian prayers for the victory of the military and in the wake of catastrophes. Transcending passionate quarrels over the proper role of religion in politics, the Thanksgiving Proclamation reminds us how natural their relationship has been. While church and state are separate, religion and politics, in their American refinement, prop each other up.

Today, although just as thankful for my good health, wealth, and prosperity, I want to focus on food and what’s on your dinner table.

If your family is like mine, certain foods are reserved for Thanksgiving that we don’t eat at other times, making them traditional. For the last 10 years or so I BBQ my turkey in a Weber. If the entire bird is covered in mayo, to sear the outside keeping in all the juices, it is just as juicy and tasty as the deep fried birds, another good way to cook it. I used to experiment with different smokes (fruit woods, hickory, pecan, even birch) I have found that the smokey taste of contained heat works just fine. I make a sausage stuffing, with an apple/hazelnut a close second. My wife makes a shredded potato dish with cheddar/chives/sour cream and a fruit salad straight out of hand written recipe book from my mom, stuff I have never seen anywhere, you should taste her Christmas cookies. And pies (pecan and mince meat) from a local bakery that has been around for about a hundred years. My uncle was raised in the same town as the Duck Dynasty family, his mom created her own recipe for Louisiana pecan pie, I was hooked and never looked back.

So that’s my Thanksgiving, you got anything to stand up to that?

What An Effing Mess

Bring up Syria, anywhere, and some predictable responses take place. If its a millennial, Syria is either that commune outside of Newfoundland, or a heavy metal band from Oslo, then a quick subject change as to why they are not going to pay back their student loans, so there. Some on the right want the B-1’s called in, while some on the left want open borders, a flower in one hand and a welfare check in the other. But most all folks will admit one thing, it’s complicated.

I found a short video over on Vox that sums up the whole mess quite nicely;

As if things were not bad enough, Turkey downs a Russian jet who it accuses of violating it’s sovereign air space (I thought borders and border enforcement was passe). Then the Syrian rebels down a rescue Russian helicopter with an American made TOW missile.

As much as I despise the bleeding heart leftest, those unwilling to even label Radical Islam as such, thinking either a big hug is what unhappy Muslims need, or attacking the real root cause-global warming, those bomb happy send in the Marines from the right are also annoying.

Although not be design, the chicken hearted world citizen of a president we have and his penchant for inaction down to a fine science is probably just what was needed in an area of the world where no one has the moral high ground. No, not the part about total retreat out of Iraq against the advise of ALL of his military advisers, or the phony bologna red line over chemical weapons, or even his watered down bombing campaign , but if the ME has taught us anything over the years, it is that rushing in before the dust settles in never a good idea.

Sunnis vs. Shia, Muslims vs. everyone else, then throwing in oil money to put the conflict on a world stage, not to mention a major player just getting permission to expand and export it’s nuclear technology, holy smokes, what a mess.

Maybe because I see no really good solutions I have little patience for those that project supreme confidence in solving the problem over night. Where before I had Pat Buchanan whispering in my ear ,”It’s their problem, stay away and don’t get sucked in”, now we have some major players involved and taking sides. So much for American leadership in the world projecting an image of justice for other nations too small to stand up for themselves.

Here is where I stand now. I am tired of reading stories about $50 million dollars spent to train 5 freedom fighters. I am tired of Russia telling us to stand down because they want to bomb some of our allies that particular day. I am tired of my president being so detached that 6 hours before the Paris attack he was patting himself on the back with statements of ISIS is contained. If somehow a coalition of the willing can be brought together (maybe the next president, this guy couldn’t organize a two-car parade) where many nations are 1) supplying troops and 2) fitting the bill, I am certainly interested. Holland, a side from being a socialist, seems like a stand up guy with stones enough to get it going. We know Obama will never lead, but maybe he can be persuaded to follow with others.

No Laughing Matter

A constant truism exhibited over the years by the left is their inability or unwillingness to deal with criticism. Probably from lack of practice, but when your megaphone, the bought and paid for MSM, suddenly forgets their lines and challenges previously held protocols for decorum, the flummoxed are at a loss, not knowing whether to scratch their watch or wind their ass. Ditto with that ever elusive concept known as free speech. “Free” seems to be a conditional term, like free for me but not for thee,”We will stand up and protect your right to express yourself, as long as we agree with that expression”. From calls to fire Rush to Obama’s war with Foxnews, the thin skinned absolutely refuse to tolerate that with they deem intolerant. Enter Miss Pantsuit;

In what appears to be a first for a serious presidential contender, Hillary Clinton’s campaign is going after five comedians who made fun of the former Secretary of State in standup skits at a popular Hollywood comedy club.

A video of the short performance, which is less than three minutes, is posted on the website of the renowned club, Laugh Factory, and the Clinton campaign has tried to censor it. Besides demanding that the video be taken down, the Clinton campaign has demanded the personal contact information of the performers that appear in the recording. This is no laughing matter for club owner Jamie Masada, a comedy guru who opened Laugh Factory more than three decades ago and has been instrumental in launching the careers of many famous comics. “They threatened me,” Masada told Judicial Watch. “I have received complains before but never a call like this, threatening to put me out of business if I don’t cut the video.”

No one should dismiss the reach and power of the Clintons (Vince Foster) or poo poo this guy’s concerns about his own personal safety.

We have seen Obama’s short fuse when it comes to the press not towing the party line. When Hollywood wanders off the reservation, even minutely, it can throw them for a loop. The left gets special reverence right up there with Muslims. Rip a Christian or a Jew, they can handle it, no worries on your end, but say something unflattering about a Muslim and those damn blasphemy laws kick in, and you better go into witness protection.

The ONLY Reason I Would Want Trump In The WH

Another GOP debate in the books, did we learn anything new, not really. We already knew that; leftest leaning networks should not moderate GOP debates, that both Kasich and Paul are dead men walking (but still don’t know it), and that Trump is still full of shit (and still too lazy to bone up on areas that he is weak) when it comes to things outside his business wheel house. His China tirade when asked about the TPP agreement, and Paul’s smack down about what is actually in the TPP was priceless. Equally priceless is Trump’s feud with the WSJ. They dared to critique his foreign policy acumen revealed so far, it was not flattering. So Trump, being Trump, goes all half cocked and petty, demanding apologies and resignations, from the most respected conservative periodical in the world. I mentioned this before, do we really want another petulant thin skinned crybaby in the WH? Not me.

But there is one crisis (yes, crisis) that has swallowed up Europe (they are lost, give them up for dead and be done with it), and threatens our shores. Obama would cut his own throat (OK, our throats) if given the chance, Trump would not. Reason enough to rally behind the issue challenged egomaniac? Probably.

This is a must watch video, weep for Europe but don’t emulate Europe;

I kinda get Germany rolling over in submission, but where the sentiment is laudatory, the execution is disastrous. The progressive politicians just gave their countries away, and put the lives of every ethnic European as risk, not to mention the women, who should all be packing some type of firearm.

You can bet the the only reason Obama has not done what Merkel did is that physical barriers commonly known as the oceans. But he is not going to let a little thing like geography hamper his desire to weaken this nation. Some form of refugee relocation is coming down the pike, NIMN.

Immigration/border enforcement was third on my list of urgent issues needing timely remedy, close behind fiscal resuscitation of the economy and reducing the size (and cost) of government. Given what I am seeing across the pond, it is now tops on my list.

Jihad is coming, ranging from violent attacks to even a more milder form, from population control, which would bring us Sharia and ultimately, the Caliphate. We must not follow them off the cliff.

Campus Life

What metaphor best describes the insanity going on at the University of Missouri? Some come readily to mind; “The tail wagging the dog”, “The inmates are running the asylum”, “The chickens have come home to roost” (given that the pointy headed academicians and their vile progressiveness created this environment of identity politics/ intolerance/victim-hood), or my personal favorite ,”Diversity is code for fascism to the perpetually aggrieved”

It matters not that the fake hate crimes either did not exist or were created by the so called victims themselves in order to perpetuate an agenda. It also does not matter that no one can verify or corroborate the “poop swastika“, the impetus for a certain minorities to toot their “racist” horn, the mere discussion regardless of the facts, can cause a mediocre football team to go on strike resulting in the resignation of the college president. Classes are hard (or should be) so when studying get you down, let’s all go out and dance around a bonfire chanting declarations of indignation over the racist country and it’s racist universities.

For those that have been out of school for awhile, this is what I’m talking about;

Another video from the same guy nails the “equality” nonsense.

It’s hard to feel sorry for these campus officials that are finally having to deal with the monsters they have themselves created, polluting the minds of the students, breeding a corrosive culture of left-wing self-victimization that will not serve their students well once they get out into the real world. I think most of the students know this as well, the special snowflakes that get their way (or stomp their feet when they don’t) knowing that school admins (like their parents before) will always expose their bellies when pushed. How easy life must be when everyone thinks and acts just like you, now that’s is real diversity.

We Are Still Pikers

Life would be so much easier if I could just check my brain at the door and become a progressive (for that matter life would be easier if I was gay, but that is grist for another mill). I live in the land of the heathen, the SF Bay Area, where Sanctuary is given to illegal alien criminals, where Hillary is breaking all kinds of donation records, where freedom of speech and expression is shunned-especially on college campuses, and where a conservative is rarer then a Bill Clinton female acquaintance who does not have rug burns on her back. The folks, the news media and the local academicians all walk in lock step of each other, eyes glossed over like the alien children in Village Of The Damned. To blend in I could just make that awful hissing sound like Donald Sutherland in Invasion of the Body Snatchers (OK, too many scary movie references, it was just Halloween) but I can’t do it. No cowards way out for me, and pointing out the obvious, even on a venue like MSNBC, should never be discouraged or avoided;

Morning Joe, probably the only show on MSNBC worth watching, is on too early for me, but I have always liked Joe Scarborough. Funny, but the right wing blogosphere routinely castigates Joe and his show, I guess because he does not walk lock step with their particular brand of conservatism. I would DVR it, but who has 3 extra hours in the day? I can only assume that Mika slept with Scarborough early on and is willing to spill if she is ever canned, now that’s job security.

But the bias in the MSM is a huge problem. Gone are the days when news was reported objectively, now it is filtered and dressed in commentary. So when the RNC told NBC to go f#ck themselves, I was nonplussed. It matters not a twit that the liberal media doesn’t like it, labels GOPers as whiners, and paints them as thin skinned prima donnas, they were never going to have anything nice to say anyway. When a candidate is ultimately chosen from each side, only then do we need to go on hostile networks. But right now these debates are to determine who will represent the GOP and is aimed at GOP voters, why in hell should dopey commentators (or networks) who never voted Republican in their lives, why should they got to ask these candidates anything? There are no Democratic debates scheduled to appear on Fox, what do they understand that we don’t?

Clearly, poking and prodding, lumbering through hoping not to run into any walls is still the order of the day with the GOP. The Democrats are still better at this than we are. In between their groping sessions, you never see Clinton or Sanders attack each other. They do class warfare better, they do racial animus better, they offer free stuff much better. Your college tuition? Let the rich pay for it. Open borders? Only those nasty Republicans stand in your way, vote for us and the champagne (and welfare for all) will flow.

What chance do we really have?

Unequal Prosperity

We talk a lot here about income inequality, so do the Democrats, but from an entirely different perspective. Listening to the last dem debate (where’s my medal?) they have revealed themselves to be 2 trick ponies; AGW and how they can screw over big business to assuage their unfounded guilt, and income inequality which is code for income redistribution and sticking it to those with a little bit of self respect who wanted to better themselves. That is it. Nothing about improving the economy,getting people off welfare roles and back to work, the national debt, protecting our civil liberties-including my right to own a gun if I want, even addressing the sad state of world affairs (where’s that global perspective they are so proud of?). Nope, their message is simple, soak the rich and those aspiring to be rich.

One of the regular writers over at Townhall, John Hawkins, wrote a great piece on income inequality, how here in America it is a smoke screen, a bumper sticker, with no validation except to garner more votes for those thieves willing to steal from you, it is very short and a great read.

The soup bone quote;

Because liberalism works obsessively to get different groups of people to hate each other and then offers to expand the power of government as a fix for the “problem” liberals created. It’s their standard operating procedure.

In this case, liberals are embracing envy, one of the seven deadly sins. Any time someone succeeds at ANYTHING, there will be people who resent it. They’ll feel like they deserved it more, like those who succeeded got lucky or they’ll just want what more successful people have.

It is an interesting dichotomy, where progressives loves taxes, are unfazed over mountainous debt, and rue income inequality, conservatives want lower taxation (understanding the the individual is a much better steward of his hard earned money), rue onerous national debt, and view income inequality as necessary in a free market system and a motivator to better one’s station in life.

I have commented before how free markets and entrepreneurship has lifted 400 million plus Chinese out of absolute poverty between 1981 and 2001, yes, there was less income inequality when every Chinese was poor and struggling to survive. But to the progressives, this was a much better system, equality for all, equal misery.

I have no doubt the other side knows their message is crap, but hey, it has worked over the years, so why change horses mid stream? To see the popularity of that ancient decrepit commie from Vermont, the guy who wants 90% taxation for the wealthy, clearly the almost 50% of folks that don’t pay any income taxes would like the gravy train to continue. But James Woods is probably right;

James Woods ✔ @RealJamesWoods
Basically Bernie is this commie scarecrow put up to make Hillary look palatable by comparison, right? There is no other rationale possible.
5:11 PM – 19 Oct 2015

Palatable, now there’s the word rarely associated with Hillary.

Trump’s Fence

I have been spending the last few days going back and forth with some Trump supporters over on another right leaning site. I keep asking for some qualifications or at least some positions beyond the fact that he is not a politician, has his own money thus eliminates the need to whore himself out, and does not give a damn what people think of him. Yes, I like all of those, but is there anything else in that suit of his? I keep listening to interviews (the latest on Sunday with Chris Wallace) but somehow answering various policy questions with ,”I want to be unpredictable” dazzles the believers as astute, compelling and insightful. They remind me of those 2008 Obama rallies where the teenage girls would get all wet in the loins from his mere appearance. Damn the qualification, I’m in love, leave me alone.

One of Trump’s biggest attention grabbers was his fence and how he was going to get Mexico to pay for it. Illegal immigration is a huge problem, but a fence is only part of the solution. Make no mistake, fences do work;

Hungary said Monday its shutdown of the border with Croatia had put a stop to the influx of migrants and refugees.

Only 41 people crossed into the EU member state on Sunday, the government said.

“The border closure is working, it has effectively stopped illegal border-crossing,” government spokesman Zoltan Kovacs told reporters in Nagykanizsa, close to the Croatian border.

“The Hungarian government is determined to keep the measures in place as long as is needed,” he said.

“We are continuously monitoring the situation at the Slovenian, Croatian and Serbian borders, and are ready to react to any situation which might develop.”

The figure of 41 represents a new daily record low in 2015 for Hungary, which witnessed up to 10,000 people stream across its borders daily since the summer.

In a bid to stem the influx, Hungary sealed its Croatian border with a razor-wire fence early Saturday, barely a month after it shut its frontier with Serbia.

Given the influx of Obama refuges over running Europe, this was a wise move. But here’s the deal, given that the Mexican/US border is about 2000 miles, is it really possible to have this kind of success and reduction in illegal border crossers with a fence that long?

Building an impregnable wall along the border would cost about $20 billion. That is over half of the entire 2015 DHS budget, $38.2 billion. Doable, but is it prudent? The initial cost does not include maintenance. Cameras, drones, beefed up border patrol, all part of the pie. But even that, if I believed it would shut down the illegal border crossings to a trickle, even then I might consider it doing it. Now factor in the millions (pick your number) of illegals already here, and the ridiculous interpretation of the 14 Amendment that gave us anchor babies, no matter what we do, when we zig, they will zag.

But back to Trump. I want him to want this job as much as Hillary does, to put in the hours of preparation that she is putting in, to learn about how the political world works and understand that being a CEO, where you can get your way just by stomping your feet, does not prepare you for the presidency, where the separation of powers makes foot stomping pretty ineffective.

An interesting article in Barron’s this week recounts how several years ago a low level analyst wrote a report describing how one of Trumps properties was poorly funded and poorly run, giving it a “sell” recommendation with a possible bankruptcy in it’s future. Trump went after him personally, ruining his reputation and getting him fired, all for doing his job as an analyst. Turns out the guy was right, Trump did bankrupt the property (1 of his 4 bankruptcies over the years), and analyst had the last laugh suing Trump, which they settled out of court. We already have a petulant thin skinned crybaby in the White House, do we really want another one?

Artsey Fartsey

There is a bold courageous trans formative new artist in Chicago, I hear Monet got his start the same way, pass the Chardonnay and brie;

And you thought it took talent to be an artist.

Have you ever seen a more punchable face than that mope Ti-Rock Moore? Funny but in looking at that exhibit, no where is that stolen box of cigars.

If the curator was half serious about his new art exhibit, he would station a 300lb black man close by to slug each patron in the face, you know, so they could get a feel for what Officer Wilson went through, a little authenticity thrown in.

And see, he didn’t have his hands up at all, I knew it.