Week in review

Quote of the week

“A popular government without popular information or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce, or a tragedy, or perhaps both.” – James Madison

In Defense of Tea Parties

by Tunku Varadarajan

“Yes, the populists fear and hate the big businesses and Wall Street; but—and this is the heartening thing—they have not let this turn them against capitalism and the free market. They seem truly to have taken in the point, long emphasized by libertarians and others, that big business is not the same thing as capitalism or the free market, that it is in fact often their enemy. Perhaps the Obama administration has finally driven this point home, as it has been an object lesson in how the party of big government is really in bed with big business, giving it all the bailouts and favors. So by this reckoning, the Tea Parties would be a very serious development in which anti-big business forces would finally join with anti-big government forces to create a genuine free-market party that would maximize the opportunities of the little guy.” more…

Third party talk among conservatives is a waste

by Drew McKissick

“The dirty little secret among party insiders (of either party) is that the number of people that participate in the actual organizational meetings where leadership is elected is incredibly low. Far lower even than the small percentage that participates in primary elections.” more…

The Drug War vs the Bill of Rights

by Anthony Gregory

“In America, our liberties our ostensibly protected by the U.S. Constitution and particularly the Bill of Rights. How much has the drug war compromised our Constitutional rights? Let us consider a countdown, starting with the Tenth Amendment and moving to First.” more…

Unreliable evidence? Time to open up DNA databases

by Linda Geddes

“When a defendant’s DNA appears to match DNA found at a crime scene, the probability that this is an unfortunate coincidence can be central to whether the suspect is found guilty. The assumptions used to calculate the likelihood of such a fluke – the “random match probability” – are now being questioned by a group of 41 scientists and lawyers based in the US and the UK.” more…

Politics Gets in the Way of Obama’s Perceptiveness

by Ivan Eland

“President Barack Obama recently expressed a reluctance to send U.S. forces to Yemen and Somalia, two “failed states” where al-Qaeda is active. Obama seemed to realize that such a U.S. military presence might make the terrorism problem worse. If he understands this effect in these two nations, why doesn’t the same principle apply to the war in Afghanistan?” more…


  • All of the mises.org multimedia content can be accessed on iTunes U.
  • Infra-guard is a public-private organization that allows for intelligence sharing between the FBI and the private sector.
  • Download various army field manuals.


Politics and Such

  • Hugo Chavez devalued the Venezuela currency by 1/2 against the dollar. Here’s some lessons one might learn from that.
  • The 100 most influential conservatives in the United States – according to the Daily Telegraph. Ron Paul is #41. Dick Cheney is #1. Glen Beck is #6. Blah blah blah.
  • Maybe just maybe a Republican could win Ted Kennedy’s old Senate seat. Gridlock is your friend!
  • Why does he *always* look so damn arrogant?
  • Amerikans want to be panty scanned.
  • Danny Glover blames Haitian earthquake on… wait for it … global warming. Or was that climate change Danny? Ha!
  • Take a look at this graph and try to make a sound argument that government intervention hasn’t already made healthcare more expensive than it ought to be.
  • Obama appointee would infiltrate “conspiracy” groups. So you might ask “With Friends like These who the F**k needs COINTELPRO?” Lyrics.
  • Secure your checked bags from TSA thieves. Check a starter pistol. Heh.

Videos (it’s all music videos today)

  • Ten Foot Pole – “Racer X” to a Bleach video. Nice…
  • Given “Racer X” one must hear “Broken Bones“.
  • Oh hell, while we’re at it why not another Ten Foot Pole song? Final Hours. Here’s the lyrics
  • Oh, you say you want to hear “Muffled” as well. It’s the song that comes after Final Hours on Rev. Okay here’s the lyrics.
  • Or maybe none of that loud obnoxious stuff works for you, then how about some CCR?
  • Or maybe some Anime Hip Hop. Battle Cry from Samurai Champloo.
  • Or maybe if you’re a fan of Hellsing – The World Without Logos. Vampire Anime is fun.
  • Okay, you’re sick of music videos. One last one. The Bleach intro song – Asterisk. Japanese lyrics sound cool, but who knows what they’re saying…

And now the numbers…

DOW Jones Industrials – 10,609.65 (-8.54/-0.08%)
S&P 500 – 1,136.03 (-8.95/-0.78%)
VIX – 17.91 (-0.22/-1.21%)
CSI 300 (China) – 3,482.738 (+2.608/0.07%)
BSE 500 (India) – 7,005.27 (+47.95/0.69%)
MICEX (Russia) – 1,452.67 (+82.66/6.03%)
BOVESPA (Brazil) – 68,978.297 (-1,284.406/-1.83%)
RICI – 3,228.89 (-140.15/-4.16%)
Gold/oz – 1,130.50 (-8.40/-0.74%)
Silver/oz – 18.427 (-0.043/-0.23%)
Copper/lb – 336.60 (-3.45/-1.01%)
Oil/bbl (Brent) – 77.11 (-4.26/-5.24%)
Wheat/bu (CBT) – 512.00 (-56.50/-9.94%)
Corn/bu – 371.50 (-51.50/-12.17%)
EUR-USD – 1.4387 (-0.0023/-0.16%)
USD-JPY – 90.77 (-1.886/-2.04%)
USD-BRL – 1.7723 (+0.0459/2.66%)
3 Month Treasury – 0.05 (+0.01/25.00%)
2 Year Treasury – 0.86 (-0.12/-12.24%)
10 Year Treasury – 3.67 (-0.16/-4.18%)
30 Year Treasury – 4.58 (-0.14/-2.97%)
U.S. Public Debt (official) – 12,258,545,028,915.20 (-22,300,252,602.40/-0.18%)
Baltic Dry Index (BDIY:IND) – 3,299.00 (+159.00/5.06%)

Lots o’ music today. I just got on a roll and before I knew it I had racked up over a 1/2 dozen music videos. Maybe someone will enjoy them. I did…

Whew! I’ve been busy. Just finished reading The Path of Daggers.  Finished Starving the Monkeys too. Of the 400 or so pages that encompassed that book only about 30 are worth reading if you already have read Atlas Shrugged, and understand real economics as laid out by Mises, Rothbard, or Hazlitt. He just talks around that. The basicness of the book is “be John Galt” with a sort of sinister twist.

As for The Wheel of Time, I am a big fan. The Path of Daggers is book #8. The first book is the Eye of the World. Each of these things is like 600+ pages though. Nonetheless you won’t want to put them down. The 12th book in the series was just released and two more are to come before it’s finished. Good stuff.

I’m figuring to read Isaac Asimov next. It’s been highly recommended by some good friends.

In any case that’s the future. For now it’s all linear algebra and statistics. That’s fun stuff too!

Meanwhile on the political front I still think the key is in electing the right people to the governments of the various states. And so there will be more on that later this spring and summer. I will be doing some polling for a number of elections in August/November in Michigan.

Breakfast tomorrow at Classic Cup Cafe on Jackson Road in Ann Arbor. Hope to see some of you there.

Have a great weekend!

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