TX Sen. John Cornyn Joins Forces with Chief Senate Scold in Fearmongering

Citing the usual fear-mongering trifecta of terrorists, drug dealers and gang members, Cornyn has joined Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. — a man who can’t name a single aspect of American life that is off-limits to the federal government — in a campaign against pre-paid cell phones.

Despite there being absolutely no constitutional grounds, Cornyn and Schumer would require buyers of prepaid cell phones to present identification and require phone companies to keep that information on file, similar to what they have to do with users of landline phones and subscription-based cell phones.

This, of course, would be the end of that industry. The three selling points of pre-paids: they are cheaper since they don’t have a whole records infrastructure to maintain, they are convenient since they require no contracts and even ID, and they are secure your privacy.

Cornyn and Schumer are partners in selling fear and expanding the reach of government. At least Schumer is honest; Cornyn pretends he’s for limited government.

Both are selling freedom so that you’ll buy fear.

Reason #312 No One Takes the New York Times Seriously

Just, damn.

In a Q&A with U.S. Senate candidate Rand Paul, the New York Times interviewer actually nags Paul.

NYT: But in light of your distrust of the federal government, where are you on an issue like seat belts? Federal legislation requiring people to wear seat belts could obviously save lives.
Paul: I think the federal government shouldn’t be involved. I don’t want to live in a nanny state where people are telling me where I can go and what I can do.

NYT: You shouldn’t trivialize issues of health and safety by calling them nanny issues.
Paul: The question is, do you want to live in a nanny state where the government tells you what you can eat, where you can smoke, where you can live, what you can do, or would you rather have some freedom, and freedom means that things aren’t perfect?

Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You, Dallas

Last year I told you that the People’s Hotel — the planned half a billion dollar city-owned convention center hotel — was a financial quagmire in the making, supported by people who don’t know the first thing about business and don’t care how much money they waste since it’s not their money.

The convention center hotel is a project for which there is no demand, and it’s the taxpayers of Dallas who will be on the hook when it tanks. Meanwhile, Convention & Visitors Bureau Philip Jones will be cashing his checks and skipping on out of town like Robert Preston.

Guess what? The house of cards is beginning to tumble.

In January the U.S. Treasurer, Rosie Rios, traveled to Dallas to join local officials at the construction site of a new convention hotel being built with money raised through Build America Bonds. The purpose was to celebrate the success of the so-called BABs, which are federally-subsidized bonds created by the 2009 stimulus package.

Of course, what no one at the Dallas “celebration” pointed out is that the $388 million in BABs that the city floated with federal aid were necessary because no private developer would cough up the money for the risky project. In fact, local officials wanted to build the controversial hotel because years of frenetic, publicly financed convention center construction by cities had saddled the country with much more meeting space than it needs, and now meeting planners are telling cities they must to ante up money for additional amenities, like new subsidized hotels, or risk losing business.

This is what passes for success in Washington these days, where apparently any level and manner of publicly subsidized debt for any kind of dubious project is considered a home run.

Full piece here.

This is a Candidate I Can Get Behind

KristinDavis3A sexed up modern version of Ayn Rand

Libertarian and Personal Freedom Party candidate for New York Governor Kristin Davis spoke to a gathering of 25 generally libertarian supporters at a breakfast on March 1, and made the following comment:

“I advocate returning to limited government, accompanied by a minimal amount of confiscatory taxation to support only essential services along with Pay as Go budgeting; means testing for all government assistance programs; abolition of all member item pork barrel spending, balanced budgets; actual surpluses and payments to reduce long term state debt”Davis is regarded as merely a “celebrity candidate,” however, she takes economic issues and budgetary matters quite seriously.

The former Manhattan Madame spent 4 months in an upstate prison in 2008, convicted of running an illegal escort service. Her clients included former NY Gov. Eliot Spitzer. But she used that time productively. On her reading list during her stay, included economic texts by free market illuminaries Frederich Hayek, Milton Friedman, and Ludvig von Mises. She’s also reportedly a big fan of the writings of capitalist philosopher and one-time New Yorker Ayn Rand.

It’s a given that politicians are going to screw us, so…

Craig Watkins Even Gets on the Last Nerve of His Supporters

Dallas District Attorney Craig Watkins, let’s never forget, should be praised for his work in exonerating the wrongly convicted. No one can take that away from him.

But that’s not a “Get Out of Jail Free” card on all the apparently dirty stuff he’s up to — cover ups, misappropriation of campaign funds, vendettas against the Dallas County Republican chair, and so on.

Worst of all, he’s engaging in one of the great crimes on teh Internets: sock puppetry.

Use your eyes to read my Internet crush Bethany Anderson’s take on the whole thing plus some election commentary here.

The Fix Is In: Toyota To Get Kangaroo Court

So whatever legitimate problems that Toyota models have, they’re about to get the union thug treatment, courtesy the majority owner of General Motors, also known as the Federal Government.

The U.S. House has issued its conclusions in advance of hearings – saying here’s the verdict, now let’s have the trial.

WASHINGTON — Leading Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee said Monday that Toyota relied on a flawed study in dismissing the notion that computer issues could be at fault for sticking accelerator pedals, and then made misleading statements about the repairs.

The comments, from Henry A. Waxman, chairman of the committee, and Bart Stupak, a subcommittee chairman, were made in an 11-page letter to James E. Lentz III, the president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. The letter was released Monday on the eve of the committee’s hearing on the Toyota recalls, one of three scheduled.

Kowtowing to union lobbyists, their own vested interest in GM outperforming Toyota, and the fact that Toyota has spent only $24.9 million lobbying versus GM’s $50 million over the last five years — it’s not hard to see why key members of the House committee would embark on a smear campaign. And I’m sorry, but that’s the only way to describe what you’re going to get when you issue your conclusions before you have hearings.

Here’s the best part — even if Toyota presents evidence that vindicates itself, and that shows they were targeted for a public tarring despite the fact that other manufacturers have as many as 10 times as many safety complaints — they won’t be able to do jack or squat about it.

The damage to their reputation among buyers will be done.

Why no recourse? Sovereign immunity.

Seriously — I know American history inside and out, and we’re approaching a level of federal corruption and crony capitalism that eclipses anything short of Tammany Hall. No, this is worse. Boss Tweed was a piker compared to this lot.

When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators. -P.J. O’Rourke

Thursday Roundup: See how I’m not punching him?

  • What’s that word? Oh yeah, irony. The first school named in this story of how high school seniors are so indoctrinated to fear the humorless Powers That Be that they don’t play senior pranks anymore is Liberty High School in Frisco. Sorta surprised they didn’t quote the principal at Oceania High School.
  • And speaking of Oceania schools — DISD is ensuring equality in education by bringing every school down to the lowest common denominator. Viva égalité!
  • Something smells seriously fishy here. Who needs seven night vision scopes for hunting? Who needs one night vision scope for hunting anything but the most dangerous game? And who spends an average of $7,000 on a night vision scope in the first place? Even the most advanced ones don’t run that much.
  • You know, it’s stupid enough that anyone would deny that the email has a racist tinge – referring to the White House as the black house. But I’m even more offended at the stupidity of thinking a proposed state bill in Austin originated with Mr. Obama, and with the idea of a $50 tax on gun purchases.

Monday Roundup: Can I Borrow Your Towel? Just Hit a Water Buffalo

  • When most Democrats, Republicans, the media, and right-thinking people are behind something big, expensive and grand — like they are the commuter rail scheme (or the hotel, or the Trinity Parkway) — you just know it’s probably a bad idea. I’m just going to sit here maturely and sup upon the bitter disappointment from everyone who wants to tax drivers for the benefit of a single digit percentage who feel good about themselves for taking public transportation. Muhahaha.

Monday Roundup: Do They Have Jokes in Your Country?

  • “If they ban smoking what’s next? Fatty foods?”
    “Oh, don’t be ridiculous. That’s a stupid slippery slope argument.”
    Guess what.
  • Good God. Almost three months for skipping jury duty? Which banana republic is this? Oh, it’s Collin County. That’s some fine police work, Lou.
  • picture-2And of course, a congratulations to the Mayor Tom Leppert, James Taggart, Phillip Jones, and Wesley Mouch on a sweeping win Saturday.

Friday Roundup: If This Lasts More than Four Hours…

  • Today’s DMN Opinion home has a roundup of all the recent op-eds for and against glorious People’s Hotel. Notice the pro-hotel folks don’t make a business case for the hotel, and in fact Mayor Leppert spends most of his op-ed attacking Harlan Crow. Pretty telling.
  • Southlake resident Phillip Jones, president of the Dallas CVB, released a list of four organizations that have “committed” to having their conventions if the People’s Hotel is built. But none have signed any contracts, and none have put down a deposit, which is the bar other CVB’s require to consider a convention booked.