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Statists… Doin’ it right!

Sorry, that headline is a bit of sarcasm.

In Greece, the statists wanted to get some tax revenue, and to protect the environment. Killing two birds with one stone, they quadrupled taxes on heating oil. Smart, right? But did it work?

…the smell of wood smoke lingers everywhere at night…few residents here can afford heating oil…Overnight, the price of heating a small apartment for the winter shot up to about $1,900 from $1,300…

…the government seems to be losing money on the measure…Many Greeks…are simply not buying any heating oil this year…[the government] appears to have lost…about $190 million…in revenue…Meanwhile, many Greeks are suffering from the cold.

Closer to home, Gov. Pat Quinn of IL thinks it’s time for a $10 minimum wage.

“It’s obvious the governor feels such an increase will be good for the economy and good for workers who drive our economic growth. So many people are struggling to make ends meet earning the basic minimum wage — and these ends never get met,” the source said.

Problem is: minimum wage hikes kill jobs. Illinois’ lower-wage workers are going to suffer (not gain), if the measure passes.

Will statists ever learn that government can’t simply decree good outcomes? Probably not: they don’t want to learn it.

Why doesn’t City of LA attend to its uneven sidewalks?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 7:28 pm - February 7, 2013.
Filed under: LA Stories

Just cause this on Instapundit:

REASON TV: LA’s New Crack Epidemic: Sidewalks. Have you noticed that the more time and energy cities put into things like banning big sodas or plastic grocery bags, the worse jobs they do at things that used to be considered basic functions of government?

They should have interviewed me.  In late November when it dark, walking from my gym to my car, parked on an adjacent side street — in the City of Los Angeles, I didn’t see a spot where a tree roots had pushed one square of the sidewalk up so that it was no longer level with the square next to it.

I tripped on the higher square and fell.  For a few days afterward, whenever I turned in a certain way, I felt a severe pain on the side where I had fallen.  The pain eased up after a week.

A friendly guy from the gym who had seen me fall — and rushed over to assist me — said he had seen such uneven sidewalks all over the city.

Should I have sued the city had I broken a rib?

Watcher of Weasels –1st Nominations of February 2013

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 7:18 pm - February 7, 2013.
Filed under: Blogging,Conservative Ideas

Council Submissions

Latest mass shooter: Basically Liberal

First, thoughts and prayers to Dorner’s victims and their families. This is an awful tragedy.

Next, mainstream media seem oddly silent about any possible political angle amongst his motivations. A Yahoo! / Atlantic Wire article, titled The Scariest Parts of the Chris Dorner Manifesto That Warned of LAPD Killings, does take the time to quote Dorner’s love of Ellen:

Ellen Degeneres, continue your excellent contribution to entertaining America and bringing the human factor to entertainment. You changed the perception of your gay community… I congratulate you on your success…

I don’t know why they found that quoteworthy; love of Ellen is hardly ‘scary’. And somehow, the article omits any mention of the fact that Dorner also loves liberal journalists, Obama, certain socially-liberal Republicans, Hillary and gun control.

Basic AP coverage is no better. To find out about Dorner’s politics, you must dig into his manifesto yourself. Letting Dorner speak:

If you had a well regulated AWB [ed: assault weapons ban], this would not happen. The time is now to reinstitute a ban that will save lives…Whether by executive order or thru a bi-partisan congress an assault weapons ban needs to be re-instituted. Period!!! Mia Farrow said it best. “Gun control is no longer debatable, it’s not a conversation, its a moral mandate.”…Sen. Feinstein, you are doing the right thing in leading the re-institution of a national AWB…


Droning on

Lots of talk lately about the Obama administration’s policy of drone strikes on terrorists.

“Bush did it too”, but Obama has escalated the number of these strikes, and also conducted the first strike ever against an American citizen (Anwar al-Awlaki).

I’m not sure yet if these strikes are right (i.e., legitimate combat / battlefield strikes), or wrong (i.e., more like extrajudicial killings; possibly war crimes, when they hit civilians on non-battlefields). But I do know that they provide a fascinating window into left-wing hypocrisy. I’ll tally some examples.

  • When Bush was President, these strikes were, to lefties, a sign of American darkness. But now that Obama is President, … ?
  • (more…)