Happy Reagan’s Birthday!

It’s Ronald Reagan’s birthday.  He’d be 105 if he were alive today.

I’ve been writing about Reagan – who, along with PJ O’Rourke, Solzhenitzyn, Dostoevskii and Paul Johnson is the reason I’m a conservative today – as long as this blog has been in existence, and long before.   He was the first Republican I ever voted for – growing up in the left-leaning household I did, Reagan was utterly trayf.

His eight years in the Presidency, like his two terms in California, were not perfect, and I don’t beatify my presidents, even if they’ve been out of office for two and a half decades.  His last term wasn’t as stellar as his first, and his last two years were very difficult.

Still and all, he was the greatest president of the second half of the 20th Century.  All it takes is one great accomplishment; he had two.

He caused the implosion of Communism.  Let no liberal bobblehead tell you otherwise.  They’ll say the USSR fell because of Mikhail Gorbachev; they ignore (or, more likely, never dig beyond the left’s chanting points to learn) that Gorbachev only became Premier as a reaction to Reagan.

And he not only saved the economy (for a couple decades), but thanks to the end of the Cold War, he ushered in the greatest period of unmitigated prosperity in history; Bill Clinton cashed the “peace dividend” (and the Gingrich congress prevented him from squandering it), to the benefit of everyone in the world who wasn’t living in complete tyranny.

Some hamsters say “Reagan could never get nominated today!”    It’s possible.  I have a copy of a George Will book from the middle of Reagan’s second term that hammers the President’s departures from conservative orthodoxy; I can imagine what today’s Mark Levins and Laura Ingrahams would say and do.

But on the other hand, listen to “A Time For Choosing”, his 1964 speech supporting Barry Goldwater, where he “came out” as a conservative.  Tell me that wouldn’t fit in at a Tea party meeting:

Anyway – have a safe and blessed Reagan’s Birthday.

 

The Hero Is Exposed When His Crimes Are Brought To The Light Of NARN

Today, the Northern Alliance Radio Network – America’s first grass-roots talk radio show – is on the air! I will be on live from 1-3PM today!

Today on the show, I’ll be out at “Holes for Heroes” with Brad Carlson!  Come on out to Medicine Lake and join us out on the ice!

Don’t forget – King Banaian is on from 9-11AM on AM1440, and Brad Carlson has “The Closer” edition of the NARN Sundays from 1-3PM.

So tune in the Northern Alliance! You have so many options:

Join us!

Well, That Snuck Up On Me

Today is this blog’s 14th Anniversary.

On February 5, 2002, I – a fairly recently divorced guy with a couple of kids and a fifteen-year-dead “career” as a pundit, working at a dotcom that was already circling the drain – read an article in Time magazine about “the new generation of conservative intellectuals”.  They directed me to, of all people, Andrew Sullivan – who was a conservative, at the time – and in a sidebar, explained what a “blog” was.

Starving for an outlet, I ran out to “Blogger.com”, signed up, and started writing.   And I’ve kept at it, most weekdays, ever since.

I got lucky – I got a couple of back to back Instalanches bright and early and, on one notable day back in 2004, simultaneous plugs from Instapundit, Hugh Hewitt and James Lileks – which pretty much put me on the map.

Blogs surged, of course, and then settled back into the social media pack behind Twitter and Facebook.  What was once a huge, bustling blogging scene in the Twin Cities is now a couple of blog superstars – Ed Morrissey, Lileks and the Powerline guys – and a small, hard core of people who just love to write; I’m one of them.

Up until that first couple of Instalanches, this blog got maybe 10 hits a day.  I’ve been holding steady around 1,000 visits every weekday for most of the past decade or so – not enough to make it a fulltime job, too many to be anything but thankful for the opportunity I’ve been given.

And it’s been an amazing opportunity.  It led, of course, to meeting a group of amazing friends; Brian, Chad and Atomizer from the Fraters (Brian emailed me back in 2002, the first person to tell me that there were other bloggers in the Twin Cities), John and Scott from Power Line, Lileks, King Banaian (blog is long gone), Brad, the Stroms and the Stewarts, the tireless Mr. D, Enge, Gary, Ryan, Foot, and too many others to mention.

And it led to the show, of which much more next month.

Anyway – thank you all for indulging my little outburst this past almost-decade-and-a-half.

Help Me Out Here

To:  Colgate
From:  Mitch Berg, Uppity Peasant
Re:  Your Super Bowl Ad

Colgate,

So I watched the teaser for your Super Bowl spot:

I get it.  There’s big money in appealing to the altruism of the soft-core social justice warrior.  There’s a whole generation of Millennials out there who are impressed by symbols.

And I am not one of the people who “wastes” water like the guy in the ad.  I’m way too frugal for that.

But I have a question.  Several, actually:

  1. If I did leave the faucet running, what do you think would happen (other than inflating my water bill)?   Would the water disappear from the face of the earth, never to be seen again?    Of course not; it runs down the drain, through the sanitary sewer, back to sewage plant and a holding pond, where it evaporates, turning into humidity, clouds, and eventually rain or snow, falling…somewhere in the world, usually to repeat the cycle over and over and over.
  2. For that matter, what do you think happens to the water I drink?  That it disappears from the earth for good?  No – it comes back out in one form or another; #1, #2, sweat, tears, spittle, whatever.  It eventually gets back to the environment, where it evaporates and becomes humidity, clouds, fog, snow, rain, ice, glaciers, or something.  And then repeats the cycle, over and over again.
  3. You end the ad with a young, ethnically-ambiguous girl (Asian? Central American?  Briilliant casting, actually) thirstily and heart-rendingly slurping up every drop of the “wasted” water she can get her hands, literally, around.  Now, I live in a part of the world blessed with a lot of water.  My city water comes from the Mississippi River.  And any water I don’t physically consume eventually probably gets back there, or seeps down into an aquifer, or evaporates back into the atmosphere to go heaven-only-knows where.  So please tell me; if I don’t use a gallon of water, how do you propose that it gets to that little girl in Myanmar or Honduras?  Can I pack it up in a jug and send it there, with Colgate paying the freight? Will you be holding a water drive?  How is my use of water – which, between nature and a government that handles basic services with some degree of competence, is plentiful where I live – related to the availability of water in a third-world hellhole beset by banana-republic socialists, corruption and incompetence?   Can the water I don’t use be re-purposed to drowning the successive waves of dictators that have managed to make places like the little girl’s hometown short of water, even though they’re by a freaking rain forest.

Thanks in advance.

Meet The DFL’s Praetorian Guard

The City Pages – the Twin Cities’ media’s aggressively dumb and mindlessly aggressive little brother – engages in “Trump-shaming”, in an article that asks the question that’s on every Minnesotan’s “mind”:

DFLMinistryofTruthLARGE

Who among us would give to Donald Trump? These people, that’s who.

The article then publishes the names of everyone (they could find) who’s donated to Trump, from the $1,000 donations down to $19.

Now, let nobody be under the delusion that the City Pages is anything but the low end of the DFL’s PR chain, covering the “dumb, entitled, self-impressed would-be hipster” market segment.

But this is part of a larger Democrat strategy – and it’s nothing new.  Back in 2010, the DFL used the media to help “shame” Tom Emmer’s corporate donors into acquiescence.   Newspapers around the country have been trying to “gun-shame” carry permit holders (in states that have less-effective protections for permittees than Minnesota law does, thankfully) ever since they could.  Even Minneapolis city councilwoman, Generalissima and Councilwoman for Life Alondra Cano, used/abused her position with the city to try to “shame” her critics by publicizing their personal contact information.

This is your Twin Cities media, doing its job.

No, I mean its real job.

Kim Norton: Minnesota’s Greatest Gun Salesperson

GOCRA notes that since Barack Obama and Kim Norton started their parallel offensives against guns (in the hands of the law-abiding citizen), Minnesota carry permits are flying off the shelves as fast as guns of all types.  January was a near-record month for permit applications:

The number of valid Minnesota carry permits is now 221,712, an increase of more than 6,000 in the last month, according to figures released by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

That’s the second-largest increase ever. The largest increase occurred in March 2013, in the wake of calls for increased gun control following the murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

Permittage-2-4-16

The sharp increase following the San Bernadino, California mass murder — and subsequent calls for more restrictions on firearms — was entirely predictable, according to GOCRA President Andrew Rothman. “Nothing gets people more interested in exercising their rights than the threat of having them taken away,” he said, noting a similar increase after Sandy Hook.

The people are generally smarter than their legislators:

GOCRA’s founder and chairman, Professor Joseph E. Olson, emphasized that although police arrived at the San Bernadino scene in under five minutes, the killers had already taken 14 lives and fled the scene.

“The only solution to a mass murder incident is instant counterfire,” he said. “It doesn’t matter who is shooting back: police, security, or an ordinary citizen. All that matters is that someone is. As history shows, after the first armed resistance, the murderer will almost always either give up, or run for cover — and often commit suicide. Either way, the presence of instant counterfire ends the murdering. Nothing else does.”

The next nine months are going to be intense.  And if Bernie or Hillary wins the election, look for the lines at gun stores to make the lines at Star Wars look like the lines outside Truth.

Almost Like A Sequel To “Trulbert”

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The Federal Reserve was formed in 1913 for one purpose: to give the nation a stable money supply.  That’s it, nothing fancy, just provide a safe, secure, stable supply of money that will hold its value.  We needed that, because the previous national money schemes all went bust and decades of economic chaos followed.

 

After WW II, things looked pretty good and people had forgotten the old lessons.  In the 1970’s, Congress passed the Community Reinvestment Act to force banks to lend to unqualified borrowers and also expanded the Federal Reserve’s mission to include social engineering through monetary policy: “ . . . effectively promote the goals of maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long-term interest rates . . . .”

 

Remember the recession under Nixon, WIN buttons and the malaise economy of the Carter years?  And the real estate crash we just had?  Social engineering gone awry.

 

The federal government still deficit spends but nobody will buy worthless US bonds so the Federal Reserve buys them with money that it prints up.  I suspect the reason that cash inflow isn’t showing as inflation is the rest of the economy is in deflation but the government changed the formula to hide the fact its borrowing only partly offsets the slow-motion crash.

 

Buyers have a fixed amount of money to spend on monthly house payments.  It doesn’t matter whether that $1,000 per month goes to interest or principal.  The Fed is keeping interest rates low to prop up home values to benefit Baby Boomers wanting to sell McMansions, but it’s killing retirees whose investment accounts earn nothing, cost management fees and are eroded by secret inflation.

 

I suspect the Fed will raise interest rates when more Baby Boomers have retired and need the investment money.  True, it’ll crush home values but retirees won’t care at that point.

 

They tinker with the money hoping to reward certain behavior but if it crashes the economy again – as the other systems did before it – then we’ll be standing around saying “What we need is a safe, secure, stable supply of money that will hold its value.”

 

Joe Doakes

“He who forgets his history…”

Lightning Fails To Strike

SCENE:  Mitch BERG is out running his snowblower down the block.  BILL GUNKEL, former Republican who is now chairmain of the Inver Grove Heights chapter of “Former Republicans for Ron Paul”, pulls up to the curb.  

GUNKEL:  Hey, Merg!

BERG:  Oh, hey, Bill.  What’s up?

GUNKEL:  Elections are a sham.  The best way to “participate” in elections is withdrawing your consent by refusing to vote.

BERG:  Huh.  Well, feel free to tell the Minnesota Department of Revenue “I have withdrawn my consent” when they come for your money and property after the DFL wins.

GUNKEL:  Hah.  So what?  Your participation makes absolutely no difference.  In fact, settled science has shown us that your chance of dying on your way to the polls is greater than your chance of affecting the outcome of an election.

BERG:  That’s absurd!

GUNKEL:   It’s science!  Why do you hate science?

BERG:  It’s not science.  It’s arithmetic.  The writer – apparently a barrista who contributes to “Forbes” – calculated your chance of being the single vote that decides an election versus your chance of dying in a car accident on the way to the polls.

GUNKEL:  So?

BERG:  So nothing.  Of course your chances of being the single vote that decides an election are small – although if you think they’re nonexistent, tell it to her.

GUNKEL:  Hah.  That’s just the religion you were taught in high school civics class.

BERG:  Right.  And all of you “libertarians” who sit resplendently above it all snarking at the commoners are so much better than that.  I get it. Look – it was a stupid article, and it reinforces an even dumber point.  It’s not about tipping elections yourself.  It’s about bringing a lot of people who believe the way you do to the polls to help you tip it.  Which, to be fair, is something your crowd has never been good at.

GUNKEL:  Pffft. That never happens.  If it did, you’d see election results change significantly.

BERG:  It most certainly does.  Thirty and forty years ago, support for gun control was extremely common at the state and federal levels.  Over the course of thirty years, Human Rights advocates in ones and twos voted, and convinced others to vote, for rather than against the Second Amendment.  Today, those regular schnooks voting by their ones and twos have flipped that issue 180 degrees.

And you “liberty” people could do it too, if you ever stopped purity-testing each other to a fine sheen and started trying to convince people, instead of bellowing about “principles” to rooms full of people just like you.

GUNKEL:  Oooh, look – a city snow plow!  (Forms a snowball, begins the stalk)

And SCENE

Why I Oppose The Death Penalty, Part MMMIX

Convictions gained through official misconduct; it’s not just for Manitowoc County Wisconsin any more.

Among those exonerated, 58 had been convicted of homicide, including five people who had been sentenced to death, it said. About three-quarters of the homicide exonerations included official misconduct, it said.

Another large group involved drug possession. Many times people held in custody falsely confessed to a crime to avoid a trial where they faced much longer sentences, the report said.

Texas was the top state for exonerations, propelled by conviction integrity units set up in its most populous counties. The state known for its tough approach on crime has also been a national leader in prosecutorial reform.

“For the integrity of the system, it is the right thing to do,” said Inger Chandler, head of the Harris County District Attorney’s Conviction Review Section, where there were 42 exonerations in 2015.

As long as prosecutors’ employment depends on politics, our “Justice” system will have a noxious layer of endemic injustice baked in.

The Scary Thing About Iowa

OK, conservatism had a good night, and the Trump bubble got deflated ever so slightly, maybe.

But the scariest thing to come out of Iowa is that a whole lot of people consider socialism an acceptable alternative.

Peggy Noonan:

A conservative of a certain age might say: “No, he’s a fad. Socialism is yesterday! Marx is dead, the American economic behemoth rolled over and flattened him. Socialism is an antique idea that rocks with age. America is about the future, not the past.”

I disagree. It’s back because it’s new again.

For so many, 2008 shattered faith in the system—in its fairness, usefulness and efficacy, even in its ability to endure.

As for the young, let’s say you’re 20 or 30, meaning you’ll be voting for a long time. What in your formative years would have taught you about the excellence of free markets, low taxes, “a friendly business climate”? A teacher in public high school? Maybe one—the faculty-lounge eccentric who boycotted the union meetings. And who in our colleges teaches the virtues of capitalism?

If you are 20 or 30 you probably see capitalism in terms of two dramatic themes. The first was the crash of ’08, in which heedless, irresponsible operators in business and government kited the system and scrammed. The second is income inequality. Why are some people richer than the richest kings and so many poor as serfs? Is that what capitalism gives you? Then maybe we should rethink this!

And Mr. Sanders makes it sound so easy. We’re rich, he says; we can do this with a few taxes. It is soft Marxism. And it’s not socialism now, it’s “democratic socialism” like they have in Europe. You’ve been to Europe. Aside from its refugee crisis and some EU problems, it’s a great place—a big welfare state that’s wealthy! The French take three-hour lunches.

I was about to say that younger Americans’ illiteracy about the history of socialism was a failure of the American educational system…

…but I stopped myself.  To the teachers unions and most of academia, it’s a feature, not a bug.

Liability

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

This seems like a sensible balancing of rights.

 

It’s already the law that a business owner owes his customers a duty of care (to make sure the floors aren’t slippery, for example).  If you, as the business owner, invite me to your place of business but prevent me from protecting myself therein, this proposed law says you have assumed an additional duty of care to protect me.

 

You could fulfill the additional duty through armed guards, for example, but you cannot neglect the additional duty that you voluntarily assumed, leaving me unprotected.  If you do neglect your additional duty and I get hurt when I could have defended myself, you should pay.

 

Naturally, the insurance company will have a say in setting your premiums . . . .

 

Joe Doakes

When liability insurance is allowed to account for all liability, we’ll see some sense come to that side of the debate.

Hint:  Joe’s right.

A High Floor And A Low Ceiling

Rand Paul has been on my short list for a long time.

And like the rest of my presidential short list as of four months ago – Walker and Jindal – Paul is out.  Apparently my short list is a kiss of death.

Anyway…:

Paul had become an increasingly marginal figure in the still-sprawling GOP field. He finished fifth in Iowa, with less than 5 percent of the vote, but is projected to do much worse in next week’s New Hampshire primary, with recent polls showing him in ninth place.

The Kentucky senator was facing a dismal money situation, and ended the fourth quarter with $1.3 million in the bank for his presidential campaign. He raised roughly $2.1 million in the quarter, while spending $2.9 million. His super PACs ended the year with a little more than $4 million in cash on hand.

He’s off to focus on his Senate re-election bid.

My two cents?  Paul had two major handicaps:

  1. He had the above-mentioned “high floor and low ceiling”; a fair number of people, many inherited from his father’s campaigns, others from the Tea Party, who supported him.  But their idea of ‘working for a candidate” seemed to involve mostly vigorous tweeting and taking online polls (which Paul, like his father, routinely swept).
  2. His followers shared many of his father’s followers’ worst traits; an almost personality-cultish focus on the candidate rather than the issues, and in all too many cases an entitled arrogance about their candidate’s superiority.   If I had a nickel for every Rand supporter I see online this morning claiming that “the electorate is just too stupid for us”, I could buy that Les Paul I’ve been eyeing.

Anyway – it’s a crummy world, where Rand Paul is out but Rick Santorum is still in.

A Little Trouble

I’m not sure a lot of people on the left really understand what the Hillary Clinton email scandal entails.

And I’m not sure reading this excellent synopsis by Deroy Murdock will help – because if there’s anything liberals “get” less than economics, it’s intelligence.

But for those with ears to hear, Murdock’s piece is pretty damning.  Some of the consequences of having a foreign power “out” a “Special Action Program”:

  1. Intel officers responsible for those programs must be alerted.
  2. Once alerted that SAP was mishandled and on a system that has been attacked, it is only prudent to end those programs.
  3. What does ending those programs mean? Depending on the SAP involved, it could mean redoing war plans, terminating ongoing covert actions, rethinking how the exposed covert actions must be done and executing on that new plan, or, if it reveals a source, removing that source from his environment.
  4. That has a significant impact. Presume, if you will, that it was a source. If that source were providing intel of such value that it rose to the SecState, now we’ve lost that source.
  5. Intel officers care about their sources, and for two reasons. One, we’re human beings. We don’t want those assisting us and our country to be hurt, even though we recognize the danger in which they are placing themselves. Two, the business model doesn’t work very well if sources think they’ll be outed. The US intel community already has so much trouble in that regard due to Edward Snowden and Bradley [now Chelsea] Manning. This just compounds it. Think about the next meeting between a prospective source and a CIA case officer trying to recruit that source to risk his/her life for the United States: “Are you sure a high-level official won’t out me?”

Read the whole thing.

And give it to your liberal friends.  See if the eyes glaze over with incomprehension.

Disparity

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Compare the green shaded areas on this map:

with the red circles on this map:

I know, I’m comparing apples to oranges but it’s the best available data to make my point.  The area of the state with the most shots fired has the fewest permits to carry.  Why is that?

Perhaps because criminals don’t obey laws?

Joe Doakes

Let’s ask Kim Norton.

This Is “Gun Safety”

Chicago has dragged their feet and obstructed the law-abiding gun citizen’s attempt to protect themselves ever since the day the Heller decisions was announced.

And the city’s murder rate is setting new records; January saw 51 homicides, the bloodiest January since the gory days of the ’90s.

Gang conflicts and retaliatory violence drove the “unacceptable” increase in homicides, the police department said in a statement. But the rise in violence also notably comes as the Chicago Police Department faces increased scrutiny following the court-ordered release of a police video showing a white police officer fatally shooting a black teenager 16 times, and as the department implements changes in how it monitors street stops by officers.

Chicago routinely records more homicides annually than any other American city, but the grim January violence toll marks a shocking spike in violence in a city that recorded 29 murders for the month of January last year and 20 murders for the month in 2014. In addition to the jump in killings, police department said that it recorded 241 shooting incidents for the month, more than double the 119 incidents recorded last January.

Some on the left – including, I suspect, Kim Norton – might think that the spike in violence is despite the city’s intransigence on guns in the hands of the law-abiding.

Some of us know better.

Promises, Promises

It’s become an election-year staple; celebrities – usually well past the tops of their career bell curves – promising to move to other countries if a Republican is elected or re-elected President.

Of course, I can’t recall a single one that ever did.

But here’s one such promise that, if true, could have a monumental impact on our society:

One in four federal workers would consider leaving their jobs if Trump were elected president, according to a new survey conducted by the Government Business Council, Government Executive Media Group’s research arm. About 14 percent of respondents said they would definitely consider leaving federal service under President Trump, while an additional 11 percent said they might.

 

The findings indicate those leaving government would come from agencies’ top ranks, as a majority of respondents were in General Schedule positions GS-13 and higher.

 

Nearly as many Democrats said they would consider leaving in a Trump administration as would definitely stay, the survey found. Among Democrats, 42 percent said they would consider leaving, while 48 percent would not. Just 8 percent of Republican feds would consider refusing to work in a Trump presidency.

Read on if you want to get even more disgusted with the Federal workforce.

Of course, just like our big-talking celeb class, it’ll never happen.  If Trump is elected, the morning after the inauguration every federal worker will look at that Trump picture on the wall, and then they’ll look at their pension prospectus, and then likely think about what it’d take for someone with no marketable skills in the private sector to get a job, and they’ll sit back down at those government-issued seats and go back to, um, “work“.

But we can dream.

When Out And About In Roseville Tonight

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Black Lives Matter Series Feb. 2, 9 and 16

A free, three-part series about the historical roots of the Black Lives Matter movement will be presented at the Ramsey County Library in Roseville on Tuesdays throughout February at 12:30 p.m. Macalester College professor Duchess Harris, author of the new book, Black Lives Matter, will conduct the series.

 

Series dates:

  • Feb. 2 – Part 1: Reconstruction to Brown v Board of Education
  • Feb. 9 – Part II: Civil Rights to the Clinton Administration
  • Feb. 16 – Part III: Black Lives Matter in the Age of Obama

Black History Month Programs Feb. 19 and 26

The Ramsey County and City of Saint Paul Employees Black History Month Planning Committee will host two programs in February. Additional details will be available in upcoming editions of Ramsey News.

 

Program schedule:

  • Friday, Feb. 19: The Dred Scott Decision and Minnesota’s Ties to the Underground Railroad, noon – 1 p.m., East Building
  • Friday, Feb. 26: Proclamations and program, noon – 1 p.m., City Hall-Courthouse (catered lunch available for purchase at 11:30 a.m.)

Joe Doakes

Interesting.

Unprecedented!

I’ve had some of my Democrat friends chuckling about the idea that the GOP might endorse Donald Trump for President.

And I can see why they’re so giggly. The idea that a major political party might endorse someone with almost no relevant experience, whose entire campaign is built on saying things people want to hear (sometimes contradictory things to different audiences)?  The product of cynical marketing aimed at a sincere but gullible and undiscriminating audience?  A product bolstered with breathless media hype from a bloated, entitled and leadenly incurious media – the same media that was intimately complicit with creating him as a public figure in the first place?

Why, that‘s just preposterous!  That’s almost like a bad movie!

(“Hey, Mitch – are you talking about Jesse Ventura?”  Why, no.  Very close, of course – but that was almost two decades ago).

Urban Liberal Privilege

For all the talk about “White Privilege”, there is a much bigger, much more powerful form of privilege in our society; the privilege of belonging to the urban liberal establishment.

Kevin Williamson has a dossier on the slice (and it’s a large, non-diet-friendly slice) of that sector that works for government, and government academia.  There’s far too much to quote.  The conclusion:

For all the talk about “privilege,” this is a much more familiar phenomenon: This is what it means to have a ruling class.

And it cannot be repeated often enough: We are ruled by criminals.

But read the whole thing.  You’re not angry enough yet.

The Franken Privilege

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Newest newsletter – grandson born.  Not something public funds should be spent to announce.  The Franking Privilege was meant to talk about legislative matters, not personal ones.  But it’s a small drop in an ocean of enormous Congressional waste, so ignore it.  Congratulations, Senator, on the newest family member.  No grade.

Senator Franken is working on legislation to make student loans more affordable.  But senator, you voted for Obamacare, which included a federal take-over of all student loans so the origination fees and interest payments would off-set the cost of providing health care to poor people.  If you cut those student fees and interest, you reduce funding for Obamacare.  Why does Al Franken hate poor children and want them to DIE?  Grade: F

Protecting student’s privacy is a great idea.  Could we expand it to everyone’s data?  Stop the federal government from intercepting all email, text and phone conversations?  Stop spying on Congress?  Just a thought. Grade D

Bringing an immigrant to the State of the Union is a fine piece of showmanship, but you brought the wrong one, senator.  Instead of the one entrepreneur who spent 20 years making something of his new life to contribute to the community, you should have brought some of the thousands of illegal immigrants who only take from the community, or who cause disruption with endless demands to convert Minnesota into Mogadishu.  Your guest is not a representative example of the immigrant community, he’s the exception that reinforces the stereotype.  And that’s why The Donald is riding a wave of populist support for restricting immigration: people see through your showmanship and recognize the underlying truth. Grade F
Joe Doakes

I think Franken is auditing the class.

Got A Whole Lotta NARN

I’m out on assignment today.  John Hinderaker will be filling in.

Don’t forget – King Banaian is on from 9-11AM on AM1440, and Brad Carlson has “The Closer” edition of the NARN Sundays from 2-3PM.

So tune in the Northern Alliance! You have so many options:

Join us!