Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bonnie Proudfoot, Glass Artist, on NEA Funding....

"Cudos to those who stand up for the arts as a way to create community identity, tourism, local-level revitalization for communities suffering the loss of local industry. The NEA serves to bring arts to underserved communities, which allows performers, exhibits, etc, to tour and to touch the hearts of Americans across the spectrum. Each time the endowment provides funds for public sculpture, or helps out with grants for the operations of a local arts organization, it is providing economic stimulation and community stimulation-- not the least of all by keeping pride in local communities.

Arts feed more than just the artist; they feed the mind, the spirit, and the soul. Hospitals recognize the healing power of art. As a glass artist, I'm proud to tell anyone who will listen that my equipment and my raw materials are made in America."

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A couple notes on Barack Obama and "Middle East Peace"....

"... The Islamic world isn’t going to suddenly, or even eventually start liking the USA even if the Zionist supporters of the "Religious Right" and the AIPAC supporting Neocons stop trying to influence US policy, or the Israelis stop fighting back.

For one thing, Muslims consider ALL of Israel to be “occupied territory”, not just Gaza and the West Bank. And Barack Obama isn't going to talk anyone into changing that fact.

Secondly, Muslims do not get along with their neighbors anywhere in the world -- not Jews, not Christians, Hindus, or even other Muslims. For centuries, despotic Muslim leaders have used hatred of The Other to keep their people oppressed and divert them from revolt. This is not going to change peacefully...."

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Village Storefront Church....

I like old-time country stores, old hardware stores, old barbershops and old-time bars with tin ceilings. If I had my choice, a large portion of my time would be spent in those sacred places. And when one of them vanishes into the shadows of our past, our beautiful country dies a little more... along with what is left of a people's heritage.

A couple months ago I was driving through a little Ohio town and saw that one of my favorite country stores was gone. In the window was a sign advertising the space as the meeting place for a church.

Have you noticed, how in tough times, the small town stores vanish and many are replaced by the common but still strange phenomenon of the Non-denominational storefront Church -- you know, the ones with the full sentence-length names?

Well, whether it's a foxhole or Main Street USA, human nature doesn't change much, do it....

Who or what do you put your faith in? The power of the US economy? The government as an extension of the "good" in humanity? Your neighbors? A smooth, but untested politico with big plans and promises and designs on your wallet? Your pitifully frail and fatally flawed human self? Or the God so big that he holds universes in His hand and so artful that He designed every strand of your DNA - and knows your every thought.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Common Fallacy....

Crossposted from Old Hop's Hideout - by Chuck Icks

I couldn’t resist. This softball was tossed into the air and needed to be hit out of the park.

The other day my sales analyst sent a note around to the staff that opened with this statement:

Manufacturing activity fell to its lowest point in 28 years as factories are slashing capacity in the face of weakening demand.

Can you guess where the fallacy in that statement is located? “…in the face of weakening demand.”

This illustrates an illusion we operate under, taught us by the Keynesian economists who dominate our media outlets and public schools. Demand is the problem, i.e. people just aren’t buying enough stuff. “If all those unpatriotic tightwads would get out there and spend, the economy would recover.” Thus, the messianic State (I’m going to henceforth avoid using the term “government” generically, since government does have a legitimate purpose and function according to Scripture) proposes new “stimulus” packages to instigate more consumption by the public.

Declining demand is not the cause of our current economic distress; it is rather the effect. Contrary to conventional wisdom, a “recession” (or depression) is the corrective response of producers to mistakes made in productive capacity. In other words, it is a “supply side” phenomenon. How is this so?

During periods of “easy credit,” i.e. when interest rates are artificially suppressed by the unauthorized and unconstitutional Federal Reserve system, producers get false signals from a distorted (as opposed to free) market. The perception is that the economy is robust; therefore, demand for goods and services must be strong. In reality, the demand for certain goods and services is nowhere near what some producers believe it to be. Meanwhile, they ramp up production, order more material and capital, and employ more labor. When they discover their mistake (and different sectors of the general economy make this discovery at different stages) they pull in the reins, cutting production and laying off workers.

As unemployment and uncertainty rise we find individuals behaving rationally, cutting back on frivolous expenditures.

Now, here comes the State, pushing folk to take more risks, assume more debt, and spend borrowed money (including “stimulus” money printed out of thin air).

Tell me, what is remotely biblical or morally sound about that?

Friday, January 9, 2009


A One Trillion Dollar Hug -- from Roosh at Mitch Berg's "Shot In the Dark" Blog....

January 9th, 2009 by Johnny Roosh

Obama gave a speech yesterday. Word has it (I didn’t watch or listen) he discussed the economy in no uncertain terms.

Let me guess though, I’ll bet he used the words “crisis” numerous times; I’ll bet he furrowed his eyebrows real good like and probably had a real ominous look on his face too.

Were ya scared?

Did he make you think you need him to save you? …that this crisis is too severe for you to solve it on your own? Did he speak of sweeping, decisive, massive and immediate action being required on the part of the federal government? Did you need a hug? A big government hug?

These days it seems like it is our patriotic duty to consume more. And if we don’t choose to spend more money ourselves, the government will do it for us.

Obama is building his case: You need big government. You need guys like him; guys that are smarter than you cuz they read more books, went to better schools and have more letters after their name. Guys that aren’t afraid to take massive, decisive action; to write big checks with someone else’s money.

These problems, despite being undeniably caused by liberal policies in the first place, must be solved by the government. The government must “create” three million “jobs.” The government is the answer, no matter what the question, when you’re a liberal.

Liberals can’t do anything if it doesn’t justify government’s growth and influence in our lives.

But wait a minute. Isn’t it excessive spending that got us into this mess in the first place? Spending more now seems like drinking Scotch to cure a hangover.

But what if the right thing to do right now is nothing? ....

(Continue Reading at Shot In the Dark.)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Hey Hey, My My -- It's the New Global Order....

Yeppers. It's the NEW GLOBAL ORDER.

Look for the downfall of the US to continue at a faster pace, and the rise of the EU (Or check out The Book of Revelations and the Revived Roman Empire, why doncha?)

I may not be standing on the curb with a "Prepare 4 Judgment" sign, but....

Friday, January 2, 2009

Donald Westlake, Goodbye - Dortmunder is off parole for good....

Donald Westlake has passed.

The best obit is at Do The Math Blog.

"This is the life of a writer. You will touch the lives of those you have never met. You will help them through their own private hells and they will weep, someday, when you are gone."

I've been reading his books since I was in grade school - and I'm forty-seven.

One of my favorite authors, he and his buddies Lawrence Block and Bill Pronzini have provided me with tons of fun and wonderfully enlightening entertainment down the years.

One of the most prolific writers in modern times, he published 104 books (so far - this is up for revision) under multiple pseudonyms, the most famous being "Richard Stark" (the Parker novels).

Other Westlake pseudonyms:

  • John B. Allan (Elizabeth Taylor: A Fascinating Story of America's Most Talented Actress and the World's Most Beautiful Woman, 1961, biography);
  • Judson Jack Carmichael (The Scared Stiff, 2002, mystery; U.K. editions dropped the pseudonym);
  • Curt Clark (Anarchaos, 1967, science fiction);
  • Tucker Coe (mysteries featuring the character of Mitch Tobin: Kinds of Love, Kinds of Death, 1966; Murder Among Children, 1967; Wax Apple and A Jade in Aries, both 1970; Don't Lie to Me, 1972);
  • Timothy J. Culver (Ex Officio, 1970, thriller);
  • J. Morgan Cunningham (Comfort Station, 1971, humor);
  • Samuel Holt (mysteries featuring the character of Sam Holt: One of Us is Wrong and I Know a Trick Worth Two of That, both 1986; What I Tell You Three Times is False, 1987; The Fourth Dimension is Death, 1989);
  • Several other names, under which he wrote paperback porn, in the 50's and 60's.

I am sure the weekly writer's poker game will not be the same.

When this happens, you feel as if part of your own existence has been cut off. The characters are still there, but you know there won't be any more... and simply because they won't continue to grow - they have died too.

As a fan - an avid reader - you don't really know the author, but you do.

His best books?

Apart from the Dortmunder Series, I highly recommend "Dancing Aztecs" and "Trust Me On This" as well as all of the Richard Stark and Tucker Coe books.

I'll be moseying down to the OJ Bar and Grill sometime this evening.

Looks like a half-bottle of Old Amsterdam Liquor Store "Our Own Brand" Bourbon night

Don't wait up.

Hey there Rollo....