Deadlining this week as well as doing my small bit to get The Zelman Partisans ready for its next big step (look for it mid-April, Lord willing and the crick don’t rise). So blogging is a bit slow. But got some links for ya …
Personally, I think if they can’t afford to pay for their own first-class travel, the whole scurvy bunch of ‘em ought to just hitchhike and stay in hostels. And what the heck is a “first lady,” anyhow, and why should any sane human being want one? She wouldn’t be worth it even if she cost only $1.98 in upkeep.
Fabulous opening line: “It’s spring, and just as the appearance of shoots and buds makes you optimistic that winter is departing, so too are there signs around the country that make you optimistic that our leviathan state is, if not departing, at least starting to retreat.” New Mexico abolishes asset forfeiture without criminal conviction.
The .sucks domain is almost here — and its price structure makes it look like a very clever shakedown scheme.
“Dark Leviathan.” A darkly cynical look at Ross Ulbricht, Silk Road, the Darknet, and what the author believes is the inevitable fate of libertarian ideals. Someone needs to give this article a great fisking.
F*c*b**k blocks a fundraiser to help a father reunite with his son. (Hint: the reason is G-U-N-S.)
The Lt. Gov. of Texas asked the Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System to weigh in on campus carry of firearms. Pretty good response (pdf) for a bureaucrat. He nails the central issue: trust. (H/T LarryA)
In Washington state and in Colorado, banks (caught between state opportunity and federal terror tactics) struggle to deal with new cannabis businesses.
Well, now those who won’t comply with the outrages of I-594 are not just “extremists” (per Gottlieb) but “a clique of gadflies” (per a Gottlieb henchman). Remember people: if you want a seat at the table so you can help Our Masters arrange the terms of our extermination, always comply-comply-comply with the law. Any law. We don’t care what law. It’s the LAW!
My apologies, all you people there on the upper east coast. I hear that the ghastly weather you’re having is our fault. Something to do with this monstrous ridge of high pressure plunging down on us; creates a monster low for you.
Believe me, I was thinking of you this afternoon while I contemplated whether or not I should wear the tee-shirt with a turtleneck or skip the turtleneck for a dog walk. I felt soooooo guilty.
The emergency room: a microcosm for misplaced priorities. We see this in animal rescue/welfare work, too, in the form people who can afford pricey tattoos, cigarettes, and weekly lotto tickets and scratch cards — but “can’t” come up with $25 to keep their pets from producing endless, unhealthy litters year after year.
Three more hopeful looks at Western-Islamic relations: An imam says Muslims must reject violence and governments must change course; Glenn Harlan Reynolds points out that Muslim leaders are finally realizing that their “brand” is tarnished by the acceptance of intolerance; author Irshad Manji is optimistic about the future between Islam and the West.
As I recall, you guys tend to be resolution-averse. Maybe a good hangover cure to share, then? Uh … your best tips for managing to stay awake until midnight? Your best tips to avoid having your beauty sleep interrupted next year by all those pesky merrymakers?
I didn’t make any resolutions this year, but I have an idea of dedicating each month of 2015 to some different pursuit or goal. In January my aim is to see how little money I can realistically live on. Barring an emergency (knock wood), I’ll spend only for the most basic basics. I’ve allotted myself a few dollars for a mocha now and then so I won’t feel like a totally pitiful orphan :-), but beyond that I’m just paying unavoidable expenses. Will buy some groceries (mostly perishables) but will also tap into my preparedness pantry a bit. Just a bit, though. The object isn’t to see how little I can spend for one isolated month, but what’s a realistic minimum budget for any month.
Not a resolution, but sometime in the next few days I’ll happily be bringing you an interview I did with Vin Suprynowicz on the publication of his beautiful new book The Testament of James. It’s good — as you already know if you’ve been reading the online excerpts.
As soon as everybody’s had a chance to recover from the enforced good cheer of the holidays, I’ll do a mini-review and run the Q&A. Meanwhile, you might want to purchase a hardbound copy (via ABE Books; NFI) or the Kindle edition.
And speaking of beautiful, the cover design is by a member of the Living Freedom Commentariat, Carl-Bear Bussjaeger. And if he’s made that classic painting look more than a little hallucinatory with those colors, you’ll understand when you read the book.
ADDED: Carl links to the “pre-review” by Tom Knapp. I agree with everything Tom wrote about The Testament of James. And I’m the proud owner of copy #15 of the limited first edition (Carl and Tom are 12 and 19). Mine is a review copy, which I didn’t pay for, but its freebieness will not affect anything I say. My policy with review copies of freedomista books is that I either give an honest positive opinion or if I don’t like the book, I keep my mouth shut about it. I may privately tell the author why I didn’t like a work, but I won’t do anything to undermine it.
Just a quick note to thank you all for hanging in there and keeping things going while I’ve been hermitting more and blogging less. The Commentariat is alive and well!
Thanks also for making up (big time) for lost time on Amazon. Seems everybody was just doing their Christmas shopping at the last minute this year. I was worried when November flopped, but you’ve made December very good, indeed.
I also owe somebody a thank you for a gift that arrived this morning, an Opinel No. 8 carbon-steel folding knife (Amazon link for it). Has an impressively sharp blade and a little collar that twists to lock it open or closed. Very clever, very smooth to the hand (unlike many folders), very French. The ID of the “Santa” remains a mystery; the only note in the package thanked “me” for my order. But the universe of people who have my address and know I like knives is a small one.
I might guess “Santa” more easily than I could ever guess last Fall’s “Rockefeller.” (In fact, since Rockefeller went to such remarkable lengths not to be known, I’ve been trying to respect his or her wishes by not trying to find out. But I remain astounded and grateful for R., the two Big Anons, Family A, D, PSM, and all the magnificent benefactors who’ve kept that nice, dry roof over my head during the wild pineapple express storms we’ve been having this season.)
But … onward.
Have a few happy links to start working up some good holiday cheer.
Dog swims 1.5 miles through a storm then figures out where to meet up with her lost person. Her human thought she had drowned.
You know how the Oxford Dictionary people always announce the new “words of the year” long about December? Well, the Canadians at The Syrup Trap are waaaay ahead of them. They’ve already announced the words of the year for 2015-2035. :-) (Tip o’ hat to Canadian MJR)
While this next item may not exactly be in the good cheer category, it’s something that might give you comfort while you listen to that drearily bombastic uncle hold forth at Christmas dinner: boredom can be good for you.
And over at The Zelman Partisans Y.B. ben Avraham and Sheila Stokes-Begley have been telling the Hannukah story in terms you don’t usually hear it. Check out their passionate, eloquent, and unfortunately cautionary tales. I would not call their stories happy, but they might be inspiring and are absolutely informative.
One Raymond, Washington, resident expresses his enthusiasm for the town’s new status:
Washington state’s new recreational cannabis law is known for being a little less “wild westy” than Colorado’s. The Rocky Mountain High state rushed its implementation and has had some problems. Washington (which only legalized private liquor sales shortly before it legalized pot) went about things more slowly and bureaucratically.