Seventy-five years ago this weekend, polar bears first came down from the melting icebergs of the north and invaded New England, toppling buildings, tossing boats onto busy downtown streets and setting the stage for a new religion that would sweep across western society in the decades to come.
Daily Archives: September 22, 2013
Three quarters of Irish prostitutes have gone to college. I suppose it’s that portion between the second and fourth of their quarters that counts, so no fear of having to suffer through a co-ed’s interpretation of Yeats.
If they’ll travel to Kenya to do their filthy work, how soon before they decide to save on travel costs?
Al-Shabaab is claiming that there are American gunmen among those still holed up in the Westgate mall in a standoff with Kenyan and Israeli special forces.
The Somali al-Qaeda affiliate tweeted a series of names on its latest account before Twitter against suspended the group. Al-Shabaab has been creating new accounts each time they get shut down but a movement of pro-Kenyan tweeters has been tracking down the new accounts and complaining to Twitter.
“We received permission to disclose the names of our mujahideen inside #Westgate,” their latest account tweeted.
They proceeded to tweet the names one by one, including Ahmed Mohamed Isse, 22, “native” of St. Paul, Minn., Abdifatah Osman Keenadiid, 24, of Minneapolis, and Gen Mustafe Noorudiin, 27, of Kansas City, Mo.
The claim could be as bogus as their claim to be representatives of Allah, but I’d guess it’s true: they’ve been recruiting here since 2001.
Aha! Refocus like a laser on meaningless anti-gun propaganda! Obama proposes tougher background checks for gun owners after gang members in Chicago shoot 13, gunman with security clearance shoots 12.
He doesn’t even bother to explain how background checks would have prevented either of these crimes, and he doesn’t have to: anything that feeds into the hysteria is fine with his base and, sadly, many otherwise rational Americans.
Syria was so, like, yesterday.
As sex-selective abortions increase, liberals face a dilemma: support a woman’s unfettered right to abort, or protect unborn female fetuses? As InstaPundit observes, “this wouldn’t be a problem if people were selectively aborting boys”.
According to this Actuarial report on the town’s retirement system, dated December 14, 2012, nothing good. I won’t pretend to be the least bit qualified to argue with actuaries, but I can read charts and do some basic math, and the study’s charts look alarming to me.
First, let’s see what we’re basing our pension liability on: An assumed return on investment rate of, as of next year, 7%. This is a better step toward solvency than the 7.75 % we were pretending to earn just a few years ago, but it’s still smoke and mirrors. At best, bonds will return 5%, and equities would have to earn more than what: 9%? To make up the shortfall.
So how are we actually doing? 1.2%. Oops!
And what’s the trend for our funding? Oops again. From a surplus to a gaping deficit in just one decade. Certainly the Democrats would do no better in addressing the issue, but for a party that prides itself on its fiscal responsibility, the Republicans are screwing it up.
And for that, I blame Tesei.
CRONY CAPITALISM: In government-created market, Wall Street wins.
When you drag commerce into the arena of government, it’s always a home game for the big guys.
When Congress created an ethanol mandate in 2005 and expanded it in 2007, this was widely, and correctly, derided as a political gift to the ethanol industry. But it’s worth noting that big Wall Street players were also pushing for the ethanol mandate.
In fact, Goldman Sachs lobbyist Mark Patterson was lobbying on ethanol within a year of becoming Treasury Department chief of staff in the Obama administration.
When I write about the big guys lobbying for and profiting from big-government, some liberal bloggers yawn and ask “who cares if someone’s getting rich?” (See, for instance, Brad Plumer, Matt Yglesias, Ezra Klein.)
But figuring out who believes they will profit off of a law can help us detect flaws in the law we may not have previously detected. In other words, we should ask “what are these lobbyists seeing that we’re not?”
In the case of the ethanol mandate, that flaw may be the ability of big banks to rig the market in ethanol credits.
Ethanol is a scam, and it’s also starving poor people.
According to an internal town report, the Greenwich Fire Marshal’s office for years did not inspect any multi-family building, even though state fire code mandates annual inspections. Thousands of lives were put at risk as a result of this negligence.
“The Town has never inspected these properties until 52 such properties were inspected during December, 2012. The risk profile for the Town before the current Fire Marshal’s directives was so substantial as to be unacceptable.” That is just one of the startling findings in the 28-page audit of the Greenwich fire marshal’s office conducted at the request of the Board of Estimate and Taxation’s audit committee.
The report paints a frightening picture of a critical town safety function run for years by a fire marshal who was a chronic disciplinary problem. That employee, Joseph Benoit, was “allowed to retire” last year, but the department is still significantly hindered by outdated technology and little support from the town Information Technology Department, according to the audit.
For years, Benoit was the subject of rumors that he was extorting payments from Greenwich Avenue shopkeepers. First Selectman Jim Lash was finally able to get rid of him in 2007, but Tesei’s first public act upon taking office in 2008 was to reinstate him and let him stick round four more years so he could qualify for a full, taxpayer-funded pennon.
“Hey,” Tesei told FWIW, “he holds the mortgage on my house – whatcha want me to do?”