URLs du Jour

2017-03-30

■ Let's spin the wheel on Proverbs 28:24:

Whoever robs their father or mother and says, "It's not wrong," is partner to one who destroys.

Ah. I'm looking at you, Frank Guinta:

U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta’s mother and sister contradict his claim that $355,000 given to his 2010 campaign was his own money, newly released Federal Election Commission documents show.

Leading to this classic Union Leader editorial (in its entirety):

Frank Guinta is a damned liar.

As for being "partner to one who destroys": this paved the way for Carol Shea-Porter squeak (44.2% to 42.9%) to victory over Guinta last November. Right on, Proverbian!

■ Nick Gillespie of Reason has been looking for many years, but he's finally ended his quest: Finally, the WORST Argument for Public Funding of the Arts. I believe it's this, from AEI's Norman Ornstein:

Absurdity, thy name is Ornstein. A sample of Nick's rant:

For the people who work there and the people who get money from the endowments, killing the two agencies would be at least a minor irritation, sure. But to the extent that their work mattered, folks would step in to keep it going or, same thing, they would reduce their asking price to keep them going. Donald Trump is widely and probably accurately described as a brute with no interest in art and culture. This is a guy who relaxes by watching Fox News, not listening to Philip Glass or probably even watching HBO. But however vulgar Trump may be, he doesn't come close to the primitivism embodied in the idea that a country can only be great when it forces taxpayers to pay for shit they don't want. That's not artistic, it's despotic. And it betrays no understanding of how the creative world works anyway.

Probably the NEA and NEH will sputter along, but very few people would actually notice if they didn't.

■ Kevin D. Williamson (at NR, of course) debunks arguments for a specific tax increase: Bad Medicine on ‘Carried Interest’. It's not short, and not simple, but the bottom line is worth quoting:

The broader discussion about taxes and fairness and — odious phrase — “social justice” is a waste of time. Taxes are not an instrument of justice: They are an instrument of revenue. The federal government requires x dollars to do the things we demand of it, and the only end of tax policy should be raising those dollars in a way that causes as little economic disruption as possible and invades our privacy as little as possible. At the moment, our model is lots of disruption and maximal invasion of privacy — and all of it handled by the incompetent, corrupt, politicized agents of the Internal Revenue Service.

Those are the tax-code problems we should be addressing. Instead, we are addressing some unhappy Americans’ envy and resentment. That isn’t tax policy — it’s psychotherapy.

And isn't that true about other major issues du jour?

■ Virginal Postrel writes at Bloomberg: How to Save Twitter Two Pennies at a Time.

Well, first, I think that needs a comma: "How to Save Twitter, Two Pennies at a Time". Quibble aside, the problem is that Twitter lacks what the businessfolk call a "viable business model" (in which it resembles Pun Salad, but never mind):

So why not try something drastic? Charge for Twitter’s true value: the opportunity to tweet.

Give everyone a small ration of free tweets, say five a week. After that, charge a few cents each. The motto could be, “Give the world your two cents’ worth.” To kick things off, the company could give everyone a dollar or two in credit.

It's crazy, but it just might work. But I average maybe 0.5 tweets/week, so maybe I'm not the best judge of that.

■ And, speaking of business models, just as a reminder, the unobtrusive, tasteful links over there on the right (no, your right), which you should not adblock, will take you to Amazon, where you should buy lots of stuff.

■ The NR editors offer a primer in how to respond to the distortions of Neil Gorsuch's judicial record: The Democrats v. Gorsuch.

And they have complained, oh have they complained, about the Republicans’ refusal to allow President Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, to sit on the Supreme Court. The Constitution gave the Republicans the right not to schedule hearings for Garland. It gives the Democrats the right to complain about it, and even to filibuster Gorsuch’s nomination in response. It also gives the Senate Republicans the power to end filibusters of Supreme Court nominees. Gorsuch is a good enough nominee, and the cause of getting judges committed to the rule of law is sufficiently important, that Republicans should exercise that power should it prove necessary.

Downside: Mrs. Salad will have to endure me saying "nuclear option" over and over, which I both (a) mispronounce and (b) accompany with sound effects (usually, just "BOOM"; occasionally "ka-PLOOie" or "baROOM".)

■ And, Mr. Ramirez, will you please:

Clowns


Last Modified 2017-03-30 9:59 AM EST