■ Proverbs 20:21 (I think) discourages mooching off Mom and Dad until they're safely pushing up daisies:
21 An inheritance claimed too soon
will not be blessed at the end.
… on the other hand, it might be a smart way to avoid death taxes.
No, I don't know what the story is with that little Asian girl in our image du jour. She came up when I searched Getty Images for "inheritance", and she was too cute to pass over. You're welcome.
■ Meredith Dake-O'Connor, at the Federalist speaks to her gun-grabbing buddies, listing 6 Reasons Your Right-Wing Friend Isn’t Coming To Your Side On Gun Control.
So many gun control advocates are begging for a conversation on this issue, and it’s unfortunate they don’t see the Second Amendment advocates as willing to engage. I find it hard to have an honest and vulnerable conversation about a deeply held right when the starting point is often challenging my motives while coming from a place of ignorance on firearms. If you’re really looking to win over your gun-loving friend, try reading up on firearms, dumping anti-NRA talking points, and assume her or she is equally committed to preventing these evil acts.
As always, when a Progressive demands a "conversation", the underlying subtext is invariably: "shut up and listen to me hector you."
■ At Reason, Peter Suderman notes the big problem with "tax reform": Republicans Want to Cut Taxes, But Not the Size of Government.
The Republican party, in other words, has chosen to deal with the fiscal consequences of its tax policies by pretending those consequences do not exist. The GOP's mistaken yet persistent belief in the overwhelming power of dynamic effects is politically convenient. But their stubborn fantasy presents a barrier to more stable fiscal policy, to a more streamlined tax code, and to more effective limits on government, because it hides the cost from view. It turns out that what Republicans really want is to cut taxes, but not the size of government.
The GOP proposal offered some good ideas (eliminate state/local tax deductions, kill the death tax) but it's those good ideas that seem most likely to be sacrificed to come up with a deal.
The Times has been running a series on Communism called “The Red Century.” It’s really, really weird. At times, it feels like the greatest high-brow trolling effort in recorded history. Some of the headlines read like they were plucked from the reject pile at The Onion. I particularly enjoyed “Why Women Had Better Sex Under Socialism.” One wonders what all the women who had to service their prison guards for a crust of bread would think about that. With the exception of one essay by Harvey Klehr, the upshot seems to be an effort to rehabilitate Communism for a certain kind of New York Times liberal who desperately needs to cling to the belief that he was on the right side of an argument he lost.
■ One of my lefty Facebook friends has been mulling that Puerto Ricans should be encouraged to move to Florida and turn it Democrat. Megan McArdle notes that won't do PR much good: Debt Alone Won't Crush Puerto Rico. Depopulation Is the Curse. The woes are many-factored, but here's one thing:
[PR's unfunded pension liabilities] will only grow, because the biggest problem of all is Puerto Rico’s rapid demographic decline. There has long been a steady migration from Puerto Rico to the mainland. By 2008, there were more Puerto Ricans in the rest of the U.S. than there were in Puerto Rico. But the economic crisis has accelerated that flow to staggering levels. Worse still, the flow is selective: young families, professionals and skilled workers migrate in search of better opportunity, while the old and the dependent stay home. In just one year, 2014, almost 3.5 percent of the young adult population migrated.
So I suppose where you stand on this depends on how much you value the health of your political tribe with the economic well-being of an American territory. (But, honestly, PR sounds like an economic disaster no matter what.)
■ And finally, the Google LFOD alert was set off by (of all places) an article in the Arab American News Muslims March Against Injustice in Dearborn.
Many participants held signs that said "Labayka ya Hussein" (I'm at your service, Oh Hussain) and one of the imam's central messages, "Live free or die with dignity."
"Huss(a|e)in" refers to Husayn ibn Ali (Wikipedia spelling) who lived from 625-680; if he really did say that as claimed, it would considerably predate our General Stark. (We won't quibble with the "with dignity" add-on; if you're giving up your life for your liberty, your dignity is strongly implied.)