Monday, October 28, 2013

Sharks and Snow and Chicks in Bikinis - The Decline and Fall of the Film Industry

Avalanche Sharks?  

Really? I don't know what they were smoking when they came up with this abysmal idea for a movie, but it proves my point about drugs and brain damage.  The movie is directed by Scott Wheeler and written by Keith Shaw whose credits include such works of cinematograhy art as Sand Shark, Mega-Shark vs. Giant Octopus, Dracano, Dragon Wasps, Boa vs. Python, Mega Piranha, The Thing Below and Malibu Shark Attack.

Here's the scene:

Scott says, "What we gonna make a movie about?"
Keith says, "I dunno, how about sharks?"
Scott says, "Sharks is good, they could eat some chicks in bikinis or somethin'."
Keith says, "Yeah, but we need a twist cause cause just plain sharks eatin' chicks has already been done to death. After Malibu Shark Attack, I couldn't sell another plain shark script for nothin'"
Scott says, "Somebody did tornadoes and sharks already."
Keith says, "Yeah, Sharknado.  All the good shark ideas are gone.  Two-headed sharks, giant sharks and dinosaurs, dinosaur sharks...."
Scott says, "Giant sharks vs giant octopuses (I did the visuals on that one), Sharktopuses, sharks and crocodiles, sharks in lakes, sharks in sewers, sand sharks...."
Keith says, "Yeah that was a good one, the sharks like pop up out of the sand and eat chicks in bikinis..."
Bill says, "Yeah I did the visuals on that one.  Hey, I just realized. Nobody's done one with sharks and snow..."
Ted says, "Dude, I get it. The sharks swim around under the snow and pop up and eat chicks in bikinis."
Scott says, "How do we get bikinis into a movie about snow."
Keith says, "Easy dude. Haven't you ever been to a ski resort, man? They got hot tubs full of chicks in bikinis and even sometimes the chicks go skiing in bikinis.  Oh, wait...........skinny skiing!"
Scott says, "Brilliant Keith! We put in some danger, what's dangerous about snow?"
Scott and Keith together, "AVALANCHE!"
Scott claps his hands.  "We call it Avalanche Sharks. In the trailer we show these shark fins cutting through the snow and a couple of chicks in bikinis being chased on skis and eaten by giant sharks."
Keith says, "That's a hit there man. Pure cinematic genius!"
Scott says, "You gonna finish that joint?"
Keith says, "Naw. I got three more lines I'm workin' on here."

The really sad thing that I think signals the end of society as we know it is that the stupid thing will probably make money.

© 2013 by Tom King

Time to Change Tactics and Go Guerrilla

New look for conservatives.
I'm a big military history buff and when I think about conflict, even conflict of a philosophical nature, I tend to think in military terminology about a response to something I think is just plain wrong. Ellen White's landmark 1888 book, The Great Controversy, lays out the spiritual history of the world in terms of a momentous conflict between good and evil and it is hard this day and age not to see the great political world conflicts as a similar confrontation between good and evil.

In the past three decades, the political division in the United States of America between liberals and conservatives have become become more pronounced to the point that we haven't seen this level of political nastiness since 1859, right before the Civil War broke out.

Politically, conservatism is losing the battle for the hearts and minds of America in favor of a centrist, socialist bread and circuses dispensing entrenched left-wing government bureaucracy and its allies in the Democrat party. There's a reason we're losing the battle.

Bill Whittle pointed out in this week's Klavan and Whittle members-only episode on PJTV that when you look at the situation from a military standpoint, it's easy to see why we're losing.  The left has air-superiority. Over the past century, the conservatives in America have gradually allowed themselves to lose the battle for the airwaves. The left infiltrated journalism schools, bought up media outlets, TV, radio and newspaper outlets and learned from the communist party how to infiltrate and use music, films and other entertainment resources to sell their message. Conservatives allowed liberals to steal a march on us that wound up with an almost entirely leftist mainstream media by the end of the 1970s.

On the media front, there has been an insurgency led by guys like Rush Limbaugh who took a medium searching for a product and gave it one.  AM radio was dying in the 80s because FM stations did a better job of broadcasting music - less static and interference. Limbaugh proved that people would put up with a little static to hear conservative political talk while driving to and from work or taking a lunch break. Limbaugh tried a brief foray into television, but TV was too entrenched and he shut it down, sticking with what worked. Because of his success, other conservative talk shows took off and soon there were radio stations that were all talk. Then Fox News sprang up on the new cable TV alternative to over-the-air network programming and proved that conservatives preferred a more balanced news source by a rather wide margin.

Next the Internet offered independent, unsponsored writers an outlet in the form of weblogs and the new blogosphere suddenly began pouring forth information that had not been sanitized and politicized by the mainstream media. The contrast between information in the blogosphere and in the traditional news was startling. If we are to keep the conservative viewpoint any kind of force at all, we have to get that message out there in any form we can, using any media available. 

Bill Whittle's assertation that we've lost air superiority is true, but we have actually been fighting back nontraditional resources like the Internet. The blogger groups grew up and established a legitimate place for themselves in news media.  Conservative Internet-based media like PJTV, Breitbart and the Drudge Report have outstripped similar liberal net-based efforts, but the mainstream media still seems to have the power to shout down conservative opinion, at least with what Rush Limbaugh has dubbed "the low-information voter".

It's time we start thinking of the battle for the American soul as if it were a war. It is one.  So, what do you do when your enemy has air superiority?

You don't give them a target to shoot at. You have to feel bad about the public blitzkriegs people like Sarah Palin and Ted Cruz, Herman Cain and Michelle Bachmann have had to endure.  Every time a conservative moves to the leadership, the liberals call in air strikes.  And air strikes they are, because every time a conservative leader rears his or her head, liberal thought police like Media Matters assault the news media with talking points and they all dutifully repeat those talking points over and over and over until the American public is forced to look up from the latest episode of Jersey Shores or Dancing with the Stars and notice that the media is saying that Sarah Palin is stupid.

We are entering a phase in this conflict where a guerrilla war is what we're fighting - at least until (and if) we can take back the big guns. In reality, whether we admit it or not, it's been a guerrilla war for some time.  So how do you fight a guerrilla war.

The first thing we do is take off the brightly colored uniforms. We have to stop labeling ourselves as Tea Party or Conservative or Libertarian. We just have to lead with the awkward questions and avoid labeling the questions as "conservative".  Instead of addressing stupidity about global warming by wailing about how stupid liberals are, which identifies you immediately as one of those evil conservatives Diane Sawyer warned you about, know enough about the issue to ask questions like this one from Bill Whittle, "Oh, and which 'climate' are we protecting from change?"  The Earth has had climates that have ranged from so hot the Earth was covered with jungle to so cold the Earth was covered in ice.  Are we talking about the climate of 2013 or 1944 or 1912 or 1492 or 550 AD or even 1000 BC? Climates change. Who are we to decide which one is best.

George Carlin pointed out in one of his more spectacular rants that we can't save the planet and that it's impossibly arrogant to think we can. If mother nature doesn't like us, she'll just swat us like bugs and move on down the road. Send your friend who is concerned about global climate change, the youtube clip of that little speech of Carlin's without comment. They just love Carlin.

Whatever issue it is, the debt, the budget, entitlements or foreign policy, just stop waving the conservative, tea party or Republican flag. It only calls down the drones upon your head. Instead, use the stealth approach.  Simply make the logical argument or ask one of those questions that's hard for them to answer.  If we ask the unanswerable questions and let the public figure it out for themselves, we are harder to discredit.  The liberals are already trying to do that by posing as conservatives and trying to ask those killer questions that prove the left is right. Unfortunately, for them, what seems obvious from the perspective of their laptops perched on one of those little round tables at the university Starbuck's is not so obvious when you look at it from out in the real world. Logic, it turns out, is the conservative's friend.

Like a SEAL team working "in-country", we have to hold back on the machine gun fire and take the time to win the hearts and minds of the real people if we ever hope to at least come out ahead in all this. To do so, we may have to forgo the flags for a bit. We need to stop leading with labels and lead with logic. We have to approach with kindness and simple questions, not hostility. We have to treat those who do not understand what is going on as if they were our neighbors and share information with them in a neighborly fashion.  

It will likely come as a surprise, for some of our conservative, tea party, patriot, Republican, Libertarian compatriots that the folk we need to be reaching actually are our neighbors and that we need to treat them as we would have them treat us - with respect.
© 2013 by Tom King

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Misunderstanding Robin Hood

He robbed from the rich and gave to the poor.  Ergo, in an insupportable leap of what passes for logic on the liberal left, Robin Hood must have been a Progressive Socialist!

People - those in the media, college poli-sci courses, the acting profession and residents of California think of Robin Hood as the original champion of the idea of "redistribution of wealth". The fact is Robin o' the Hood was a Conservative of the worst sort. While you are reviving the liberals in the room who have fainted at hearing such blasphemy, hear me out.

To begin with, lets clarify who the interested parties were in this so-called "wealth redistribution" scheme of Mr. Hood's. First you have "the poor". Who were the poor? I can tell you who they were not. They weren't layabouts living on the dole and watching soap operas all day.  First there were no soap operas, save those sung by passing minstrels in the evening by the old communal bonfire.  The poor, in fact, were hard-working Englishmen who paid taxes and tried to eek out a living and feed their families on what was left after the Sheriff's men rounded them up at tax time. In short, just the sort of riff-raff that join the Tea Party, start their own businesses, become Republicans, read books written more than one year ago and do all kinds of other such subversive activities.

Now, then, let's take a look at the rich. First off, "the rich" of the time weren't corporate CEOs, doctors, lawyers, hedge-fund managers or bankers. Folks in those professions were pretty much middle class and in many cases "lower" middle-class. People we think of as poor live better off than most of these guys did.  

No, the "rich" were, in fact, the titled, landed-gentry - the nobles, the barons, dukes, earls and kings who lived off taxes they collected from "the poor". In other words, they were "the government". There was also a second wealthy class at the time - the church's upper-management. The great bishops, cardinals, monsignors and popes of the time collected vast sums from their poor parishioners and redistributed it largely to themselves.  You might consider them the uber-wealthy corporations of their day. They lived large off their "customers" and protected their markets by squeezing out any competition (with, of course, the help of the equally corrupt government). You might object to the analogy, but it fits.  Even though the clergy took vows of poverty, when it came down to living poorly , they simply redefined what poverty was. Sure all the jewels, rich clothing, expensive food and lavish apartments belonged to the church, but if you have a lifetime appointment and unlimited use of such stuff, then the jewel-encrusted hat you wear might as well be yours. Food prepared by the church appointed cooks eats just the same. AND when you get right down to it, the church leaders were a kind of spiritual government that was as important to life as the secular government and both worked together quite shamelessly to fleece the flocks of peasants of the product of their labors.

What Robin did was a kind of "undistribution of wealth".  Robin took the wealth back that the government and the apostate church took from the peasants through taxation and gave it back to the people from whom they had taken it. Robin's problem was not with "wealth", but with taxation. So he began his depredations on the clergy and the nobility as a kind of "tax relief" program - one that was inexpensive (his men hunted their own food, made their own clothes, weapons and shelter), efficient and effective.

So, as a conservative, I'm very pro-Robin Hood. To me he was always against heavy taxation, the privilege of the upper classes and in favor of freedom, life, liberty, property and the pursuit of happiness.

Just one man's opinion (which happens to be the correct one).

© 2013 by Tom King

Friday, October 25, 2013

A Public Service Announcement from the Coalition of Wealth Sharers (COWS)

British comedian Russell Brand recently spouted off on some talk show somewhere or other that he though there should be more spreading of the wealth. You hear this a lot from guilt ridden celebrities. They seem to hope that by doing this, the government will take a little from everybody to take care of all this wealth redistribution without actually taking some of theirs.

I have a proposal. Every time a rich celebrity talks about how we need to redistribute the wealth, send him or her an invoice like this one.   Just fill in the blanks on this puppy and mail it to said celebrity. Let him or her know that for a mere $164,999.25 you can offer said entertainer an easy way to redistribute his or her ill-gotten wealth to individuals who have had no opportunity to exploit the masses themselves. AND they can rid themselves of a great deal of unwanted guilt in the process.  They can start with me and you.

We've all surely bought enough tickets, watched enough commercials and bought enough promotional products to be able to claim to have contributed to the inordinately large amount of money they've earned and collected over the years.

I suspect that if every time a celebrity talked about redistribution of wealth, they got about a thousand or more bills from fans seeking a personal "redistribution" of their own wealth, the real consequences of wealth redistribution would, perhaps, sink in through the mental crack fog and nestle somewhere in some unused cognitive center in their brains.

One can only hope!

© 2013 by Tom King

Monday, October 21, 2013

Mother Nature Makes Suggestion for Fifth Head on Mt. Rushmore

Mt. Rushmore this past weekend (note the misty face to Lincoln's right).

A tourist couple snapped the photo above of Mt. Rushmore the day after the park re-opened after the big government shutdown If you look to the right of Lincoln, you'll see a shadowy face in the rocks that looks like a guy with a big nose and weak chin.

This mysterious fifth "head" looks surprisingly like John Tyler, the only American President who ever committed open treason against the United States.  In his twilight years Tyler supported secession and became a delegate to the provisional Confederate Congress. He was buried in a coffin draped with the Confederate flag. 

You can see the resemblance - especially around the nose and chin.

Tyler was also the first president to have an impeachment attempted against him. He also paid journalists and granted them favors for writing positive things about himself and his policies in an effort to improve his "legacy".

Oddly enough, Libertarian Ivan Eland, a crony of Ron Paul's, wrote a 2009 book "Recarving Rushmore" in which he rated Presidents in terms of peace, prosperity, and liberty. In his book, Eland ranked the hapless and inept, slave-holding John Tyler as the best President of all time. This was despite the fact that Tyler was instrumental in getting the Civil War going, both during his presidency and later when he refused to compromise over the extension of slavery into the Western territories (he was for it).

So now, apparently, his ghost shows up on Rushmore with 4 other presidents - none of whom made Eland's Top 5. Washington made #7 just one spot ahead of Jimmy Carter - mostly because Washington quit voluntarily after two terms.  Teddy Roosevelt made #21 - he did, after all, break off and start a third party.  Thomas Jefferson rated low on his "Jeffersonian ideals" with Eland and only made #26. Lincoln made #29 and would have been lower I think if Eland hadn't been afraid of being universally shouted down by readers and critics alike. Eland put Reagan, Kennedy and George W at 34, 35 and 36 respectively. He did put Woodrow Wilson last, a move with which I heartily agree.

John Tyler in his prime.
Perhaps Mother Nature decided to give Mt. Rushmore a "tramp stamp" tatoo, after the whole government shutdown debacle and the nasty way park rangers treated visitors. Perhaps John Tyler is all we deserve in the way of a president, given the dim-bulbitude of the American voter these days. Perhaps it's an omen that another Civil War is coming. Who knows!

Kinda spooky this close to Halloween, though, huh?

© 2013 by Tom King

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Crayon Drawings Hanging on the Fridge

How creative minds are busily building their own prison.

Artists, God love 'em, are wonderfully naive. They simply want to pursue their art, whether it be painting, music, the theater or whatever. Unfortunately, art isn't always a very good way to make money. You seem to have to die first before anyone is willing to pay for what you've produced.  Film and TV actors are probably the artistic exception to that rule - a few authors perhaps. 

What artists and would-be artists want more than anything is a patron - someone who will support them while they produce great art so they don't have to wait tables or operate a cash register at Walmart. They want a little dignity while they do their art - a little bread; a warm place to stay.

Now along comes a new "patron" that promises them freedom to pursue their art - government. A very progressive form of government it will be too. There will be bread and healthcare for all we are told. "affordable" housing, public transportation and all the food you need so that you may pursue your vision in perfect freedom.

And the artist in us loves the idea of such a sugar daddy. Finally, someone understands and appreciates us.  We begin producing art that supports this noble idea, that will surely create the utopian state we have so long dreamed about. Like those crayon drawings we hang on the fridge, their work is displayed in public museums, acted out on publicly paid for stages and on PBS. They sing the praises of the hope and change that is promised.

Their hearts swell with pride that they live in a nation with such wise leaders and visionary administrators. They ignore the discomforts that inevitably (as they are told) go along with such dramatic changes. Because we are all now equal in the sight of the government, we must try to be a little more the same. After all, an artist is not better than a plumber. Why should they receive such vastly disparate rewards if they have done well. All artists can be rewarded the same and only then will true creativity flourish.

Too late, the artist discovers that their patron has become their master and it is only as they are marched away to the gulags and the guillotines that they discover that their master really doesn't like criticism.

Too late they come to understand that if it is the government that makes everyone "the same" (a far different thing than allowing us all to be "equal"), then the government must inevitably stifle creativity and individualism and lop off the head of anyone who sticks it above the crowd. It is a sacrifice that must be made to save the utopia that has been created by the power of the great leaders.

Too late the artist discovers the true cost of his guarantee of bread and a warm place to stay.

Just one man's opinion,

Tom King
© 2013

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Who's Pulling the Trigger on Obamacare?

Obamacare rolls out!
One of my liberal friends says he feels sorry for his Republican friends because the party "...has been hijacked by the Tea Party and made to look ridiculous."  He says that the Republicans are holding a gun to the Democrats' heads and saying "Give me what I want or I'll pull the trigger." 

And, apparently, that's a bad thing to his progressive socialist way of thinking.

It looks to me like it's the Democrats holding the gun only they're saying, "Give me what I want. I've already pulled the trigger!"

The trouble is, that after the abysmal failure of the Obamacare rollout and the Gestapo tactics by government employees on orders from on high, the Democrats have alienated a lot of people:
  • People whose flights were needlessly canceled.
  • KIA soldiers' families who had to get their death benefits from a foundation rather than the US military.
  • People locked out of parks and fenced off from monuments that sit by public sidewalks.
  • Private business people forced to shutter their businesses because the government says their lease is null and void government workers don't get a paycheck.
  • Old people tossed out of their retirement homes because the rangers say it's unsafe to drive on a park road while the government is shut down even though it's being patrolled by more park rangers and cops than usual because they're afraid the old people mike sneak back to their homes.
  • Everybody who actually tried to sign up for Obamacare and got the blue error screen of death!
 I think the Dems must have used one of those "Wiley Coyote" cartoon guns with the "U" shaped barrel that always blasts you in the face when you shoot it.

Just sayin'

Tom King 
© 2013

*The title of this article in no way advocates the shooting of any political figure whatsoever. It is an ancient metaphor drawn from the misty origins of television and film. If you are from the NSA, FBI or CIA, please note that I am basically harmless and don't own any weapons more dangerous than an Eversharp kitchen night.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Little Democrat Who Cried "Wolf"

The Democrats have a tendency to exaggerate when it comes to the consequences of budget cutting. After repeatedly crying "wolf" they're reduced to barricading the WWII memorial and kicking old people out of their homes to make their point.  But we're catching on and it could bode ill for the president if he ever does need to tell us the truth about a looming crisis. We may not believe him.

If the government was shut down, the president assured us that little children will starve, old people will die and all that other stuff the Democrats tell us every time the GOP threatens to cut their budgets.  So far, other than some obviously staged problems, we're all still keeping on with our business.

This happened back in the 90s when Newt Gingrich and the House Republicans shut down the government twice. The Democrats predicted dire consequences. Meanwhile, the Republicans arm-twisted the president and his party into making real concessions and managed to pass 4 consecutive budgets and ended the decade with a 12% budget surplus under an unwilling Democrat president.  The government shutdown wasn't the end of the world and it accomplished a great deal toward kicking the economy into overdrive.

Anybody remember the sequester last year? The seas were supposed to rise, coastal cities inundated, children and grandmothers starved or rolled off cliffs in their wheelchairs, asteroids would rain down upon the earth and bubonic plague would sweep the land because the federal government only got a 1% raise in funding last year instead of 3%. The evil Republicans, we were told, wanted to kill us all, starve old people and run over little children with our power-chairs. 

Well, does anyone remember that we're still under sequestration? We still seem to be rolling along despite the deprivation the federal bureaucracy has had to endure. The Dems even say we're doing better. I thought the economy would collapse if the government didn't go farther into debt to get that 3% increase they were "supposed" to get. Are they saying sequestration helped the economy?

Me, I've gotten to the point I have to put on my hip waders every time this administration makes a speech.

© 2013 by Tom King

Friday, October 4, 2013

A Tale of Two Bridges

Is Obamacare the Democrat version of "A Bridge Too Far"?

Bernard Law Montgomery
In the Fall of 1944, Allied Command finally gave Monty his opportunity for glory on the continent of Europe. Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery had proposed an ambitious plan to capture four bridges in the Netherlands as part of an attempt to sweep around German defenses into the Reich itself. In deference to Churchill and British sensibilities, Eisenhower and the Allied command accepted Monty's plan and his assurances that the troops under his command would sweep over the old men and young boys who were all that was left defending German positions in Holland. 

Montgomery was wrong.  Operation Market Garden, Monty's complex and intricately timed battle plan began to go wrong almost as soon as it was launched.  As do most battle plans, Market Garden did not survive contact with the enemy.  A lot of men were killed or captured and when the dust settled the key Arnhem Bridge remained in German hands. Cornelius Ryan memorialized the incident in his 1974 book "A Bridge Too Far" which was later made into a surprisingly accurate movie three years later.  It is well worth watch as a cautionary tale of what happens when a leader's ego is greater than his ability.

The President's big plan for social change was appropriately named "Obamacare", tying President Barak Obama's "Hope and Change" legacy to his signature piece of legislation.  If you're going to "fix" healthcare, it was thought, then why not do it BIG.  Some legislators had doubts, but as with Montgomery, nobody wanted to tell Obama his plan had some problems.  Instead they buried it in 2000 pages of regulatory details and pushed it through, House Speaker Pelosi proclaiming, "You'll have to pass it to find out what's in it."

Tuesday was the big Obamacare launch.  Like Operation Market Garden, Obamacare did not do well when it came into contact with the ene......I mean, the American citizens who were supposed to rise up and shout for joy when they found out, "....what's in it."

Obamacare's Facebook page erupted in negativity following it's first bug-filled days of bringing healthcare to the ignorant masses.  Operated by Organizing for Action, a pro-Obama group supported by deep-pocketed members including billionaire investor George Soros and Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, Obamacare's Facebook page has a big banner that proclaims "Signed, Sealed and Delivering." As millions of Americans have discovered to their financial discomfort this week, Obamacare is delivering all right, but not anything like it promised to. 

Is Obamacare the president's "Progressive Socialist Program Too Far"?

Perhaps the Republican stand is not ill-advised after all - perhaps something on the order of Concord Bridge.  Hopefully it's nothing like Arnhem.  First the Germans were the bad guys and unfortunately, for our analogy, Montgomery still managed to fall back, recover and roll over them German defenders.  The Reich fell anyway, despite Monty's partial defeat.  That was a good thing for democracy, but I'm pretty sure if the Democrats manage to salvage this "government program too far", democracy is likely to lose big this time around.

© 2013 by Tom King

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Arguing with Bullies: The Phobia Gambit

I love all the people out there who get their pantaloons in a twist because conservatives and Christians don't believe homosexual behavior is a good thing. They inevitably issue an angry denouncement proclaiming us "homophobic" as though we are somehow "afraid" of gay people.  I've seen a recent call for a boycott of Orson Scott Card's books and the new movie "Ender's Game" because Scott is Mormon and believes homosexual behavior is a sin. They call Card homophobic, a bigot and loser.

That makes no sense. 

If people like Card and me were "afraid" of gay people, we'd all pretend we thought gay marriage and gay sex were okey-dokey with us so that the scary gay people wouldn't hurt us and would stop calling us hurtful names that might make people not like us anymore. 

What a load of piffle!

Look I don't like alcohol addiction either but it doesn't make me alcoholicphobic or addictphobiic. I think adultery is wrong, but I'm not adultererphobic or for that matter sinnerphobic, a term I could use to apply to the fear of any person whose behavior violates my personal moral code.  The use of "phobic" applied to a person who disagrees with you on some moral point is nothing more than playground taunting, "You're just afraid; that's why you won't do it!" I can't tell you how many times I heard that used by 7th grade bullies to try and force some frightened kid to submit to their will or to do something he didn't want to do. 

Sadly for the LGBT advocacy community, many of us have grown up since 7th grade and we don't respond well to bullying. Their favorite tactic is useless against anyone who has actually bothered to grow up.  I seriously doubt Orson Scott Card is worried about the gay community boycotting his books. They don't read them anyway. Scott is making a good living writing for the huge untapped conservative audience for sci-fi/fantasy novels out there. They buys up his books in hardcover every time a new Ender novel comes out.  I've got the whole set myself.  The Commandant of the Marines made "Ender's Game" required reading for officer candidates. 

I don't own a single volume by Virginia Woolf, Oscar Wilde or Gore Vidal, not because they are gay authors, but because I don't like their stuff. I'm not boycotting them, nor calling for a boycott of gay authors.  I'll not be making any "boycott these gay authors" list. I just don't have any interest in buying books based on someone's sexual orientation. If I don't like their stuff I pass it by.  If I do, I read it.  I hear that Vidal's "Lincoln", for instance, is quite good and it may get a read before I'm done.  His historical perspective on Lincoln is, I hear, really well crafted and unique in the Lincoln literature. 

The difference I have with they hystrionic homophobe-bashers is that I don't care what books you own or do not own.  I don't call my LGBT friends heterophobic or Christian-phobic or Conservative-phobic if they disagree with me. As a way to force people to accept your point of view, I find the "you're afraid of us" argument less than effective with people who are at all worth convincing - grownups for instance.

Convincing the herd beasts is easy. Make them feel left out of the group and they totter into line as directed by the current societal bully boys.  People with real character and independence of thought recognize the bully argument for what it is and ignore it.  Those folk have left 7th grade far behind them. We are no longer afraid of them - not phobic if you will.

There's nothing sadder or more pathetic than a 40 year-old bully still trying to bend people to his will - or to hers for that matter.

© by Tom King

Top Five Reasons Obamacare Won't Save Us From Big Pharma

"It'll save money. Yeah, lot's of money. It'll save, uh
TRILLIONS of dollars. Yeah, that's the ticket!"
Obamacare is supposed to save us from evil corporate medical corporations, Big Insurance and Big Pharma!  Here's why it won't.

  1. The Locus of Evil:  If big medical, big insurance and big pharmaceuticals are all evil, why is big government miraculously not evil.
  2. Depantsing the Consumer:  In one stroke Obamacare turns the consumer from a customer into a commodity. By removing free market forces the government takes away the only tool consumers have to control prices (voting with their feet) and replaces free markets with top down price controls.  Historically that never works. Nixon tried it and nearly killed the economy. Carter tried it and did!
  3. Empowering the Big Guys:  It is far easier to bribe government officials than it is to bribe 300 million consumers.  Now that we are being forced by the government to buy a product (medical insurance), the giant corporations that are supposed to be so evil don't have to do marketing studies or offer deals to attract customers.  They merely have to offer trips to Tahiti and all expense paid conferences in Las Vegas to the right government officials to get the price protections they want.
  4. DeCapitalizing Healthcare:  By killing free market forces altogether, medical providers no longer have to make their customers happy.  Their customers have to make the medical providers and their government handlers happy in order to get services.  This was explained to me once by a public transit official as the difference between private and public transportation. The same principle applies to "public" healthcare.
  5. A Falling Tide Sinks All Boats:  The idea that forcing everyone to pay for medical "insurance" will cover anecdotal problems like pre-existing conditions and unusual medical problems is simplistic and wrong.  Forcing everyone into the insurance market merely covers the cost of all that government supervision that will be added on to the cost of medical care.  The continued problem of unusual and expensive medical conditions will merely force reductions in the quality of care of all consumers.  Socialism's great strength is in its ability to share misery equally among everyone (except of course for the leaders who get a better deal because they are smarter and wiser and we couldn't get along without them or at least that's their story and they're sticking to it.
And like this post which promises ten reasons in the link, but delivers half what it promised, Obamacare is pretty well guaranteed to deliver far less than it promises too.
© 2013 by Tom King