From Pine View Farm

August, 2010 archive

“Running the Government Like a Business” Is a Silly Idea 0

Chris Satullo explains. A nugget:

Saying you want to run government more like a business is like saying you want to run your toaster oven more like a vacuum cleaner. The two appliances have a few similarities – they have electric cords- but they operate differently, to different ends.

Business exists to make a profit, for the benefit of a limited group of owners. It serves customers only so far as doing that furthers its primary goal.

Government’s goal is to break even, while promoting the public good . And in government, your shareholders – the voters – are the same people as your customers. That makes it a lot harder to please the boss by cutting costs.


Idol Threats 0


Via curv3ball.


Carlyfornication 0

Is “fewer governments” the same as “less government”:

City leaders have been using the “D” word (disincorporation–ed.) for a few weeks now as they try to persuade voters to pass Measure K, a one-cent sales tax increase that would help the city balance its budget with an extra infusion of $1.4 million per year for the next seven years.

Dissolving Half Moon Bay — handing the city’s budget, operations and services to San Mateo County — would be an absolute last resort, but the city may not have many other options left, City Councilman John Muller said.

I’ve never been to Half Moon Bay, though I have been to Santa Cruz, just down the coast from it (CA-17 is one scary road, especially in a rental car at dusk after a five-hour flight).

Nevertheless, I suspect Half Moon Bay needs more in the way services than do the mountain ranges that make up most of San Mateo County.

This is another result of taxpayers wanting to want without wanting to pay.

The days when you could go over the next ridge, build a cabin, and hitch up Old Dobbin to the plough, and be self-sufficient are long gone.


Promises To Keep 0

Or not.

Fred Clark cuts to the quick.


King: “I Have a Dream” 0

One more time.


“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

Children must be taught from a young age that politeness grows from the barrel of a gun.

(The police spokesman–ed.) apologized to me (the columnist–ed.) profusely. He swore he did not know why James Chavez put a loaded gun in his 4-year-old daughter’s school backpack.

It is the craziest of stories. The girl’s Molholm Elementary School pre-kindergarten teacher was gathering up the kids’ belongings Wednesday when she got to the backpack.

It was heavy. She looked inside. The cops were called.

Closer to home:

An 18-year-old woman is under arrest after, police say, her 3-year-old child fired a shotgun, hitting a firehouse.


Dream to Nightmare 0

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
I Have a Scheme
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Tea Party

See Steven M’s post on “L. Ron Beck.”

Via TPM.


Post Racial 0

I am shocked–shocked!–that stuff like this happens these days:

The Nettleton (Mississippi) Middle School elections are divided between offices pegged for black and white students, according to the memo, which was provided to TSG by a parent. The document was handed out to every student in the school’s sixth, seventh, and eighth grades, and it details the race requirements for each of four class officer spots (president, vice president, secretary-treasurer, and reporter).

Updates indicate that the policy is being changed.


Drink Silent, Drink Deep 0

No doubt they were bombed.

A PennDot archaeological team arrived at a dig under I-95 this morning to find two men drinking beer and sitting on a 20-foot-long torpedo they apparently had found hours earlier in the Delaware River.

The archaeologists called police and the Bomb Squad evacuated the immediate area at Richmond and Cumberland Streets, near I-95.


Buy the Book 0

More here.



P. J. O’Rourke:

The Democrats are the party that says government will make you smarter, taller, richer, and remove the crabgrass on your lawn. The Republicans are the party that says government doesn’t work and then they get elected and prove it.


Facebook Frolics 0

In the San Jose Mercury-News.


Socialists Here, There, and Everywhere 0

It is nothing new to charge crusaders for human rights with being socialists (emphasis added):

At the turn of the 20th century, many Americans believed the vote would make women more worldly, less feminine, and less able to play their primary roles: wife and mother. In fact, the National Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage called the suffragists “radicals bent on destroying American values and replacing them with socialism.”


Let’s Just Strip Search Everyone All the Time 0

Better still, let’s just all walk around naked.

From the ACLU:

Andy Greenberg at reported yesterday (Tuesday–ed.) that company representatives told him that backscatter X-rays mounted in vans that can be driven around the public streets have been sold to, and deployed by, domestic U.S. law enforcement agencies.

Backscatter X-rays are one of the technologies that are used in full body scanners at airports (over our strenuous objections). They can see through clothing and reveal the naked human form.

We don’t know exactly how government purchasers of these vans are using them, but if they are in fact being used on public streets, that would be a major violation of the Constitution. In fact, it’s hard to believe that any counsel at any government agency would sign off on allowing these vans to be used in that way.

Bob Cesca comments.


Bloomberg: “This Is Plain and Simple People Trying To Stir Up Things” 0

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Michael Bloomberg
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Tea Party

Via TPM.


Another Reason I’ve Lost Interest in College Sports 0

Exhibit Z-3.


How To Get Out of the Water 0

Get foreclosed:

The number of homeowners in Hampton Roads who owed more on their mortgages than their homes were worth slid to just below 70,000 at the end of June, according to a new report.

That’s still more than one in five local mortgage borrowers – 21 percent – who are “underwater” on the loans, according to CoreLogic, which is based in Santa Ana, Calif., and tracks mortgages across the country.

Although the number of underwater homes has fallen by about 2,000 since the end of 2009, the firm attributed the decline to lenders foreclosing on previously underwater properties rather than home values stabilizing or going up.

There. Problem solved.



Walt Kelly, from the Quotemaster (subscribe here):

We gotta make democracy safe for the world.


Happy Birthday to Me 0

Five years and over 7500 posts later . . . .

And the boast is yet to come.


The Fear Card 0

George Smith watches the tricks. A nugget:

Yes, stealth electromagnetic pulse attack certainly explains the spectacular growth in people applying for food stamps. They can’t buy groceries anymore after they were thrown out of work because Iran launched a surprise EMP attack and we didn’t notice.