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Archive for January, 2011

Packers vs Bears

January 23, 2011 Leave a comment

In January. 

The NFC Championship Game.

This is the only tune that fits:

Go Pack!

Be wary of politicians bearing committees

January 20, 2011 Leave a comment

So Europe sets up an oversight committee called the ESRB to make recommendations and assess the financial markets in order to prevent the next financial crisis.  What a brilliant idea!  It’s a shame nobody ever came up with that idea before.

Too bad though, as the ESRB, like most bureaucratic self-congratulating committees will probably do nothing to stop whatever it is it was created to prevent.

Bloomberg:

The European Systemic Risk Board, which aims to identify and warn of brewing risks in the financial system, may fail to prevent future imbalances as it doesn’t have any legal power to enforce action, according to economists at ING Group,Barclays Capital and ABN Amro. […]

“The problem is that these bodies are set up to solve yesterday’s problems,” said Peter Hahn, a former Citigroup Inc. banker who lectures on finance at Cass Business School in London. “They can never do more than flagging any issues,” and whether they can stop a crisis “is questionable.”

The European Union is trying to avoid a repeat of the financial crisis that followed the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and resulted in European governments setting aside more than $5 trillion to support banks. Part of a wider regulatory overhaul, the ESRB is similar to the Financial Stability Oversight Council in the U.S.

“The idea is excellent, but if the thing is not going to have any teeth, it is not going to be good enough,” said Nick Kounis, an economist at ABN Amro Bank NV in Amsterdam.

The piece is talking about financial markets, but you can substitute any other issue–healthcare reform, the housing market, whatever.  The point is that politicians and bureaucrats will always make themselves seem more important than they really are.  They do that by forming “committees” to oversee this or that emergency to make it appear as if they’re on the case and working to protect you–the citizen.  Meanwhile, they do it only to justify their political existence.

Like the article suggests, more likely than not, their actions will do little if anything to prevent said problems.  In fact, they can make it worse.  So remember that the next time politicians (Republican or Democrat) tell us not to worry, that they’re on top of things and forming committees and whatnot.

ND-Sen: Kent Conrad not seeking reelection (UPDATE)

January 18, 2011 Leave a comment

It’s been about a year and two weeks since Byron Dorgan called it quits in North Dakota.  Today, the now-senior Senator Conrad does the same:

North Dakota Democratic Sen. Kent Conrad announced today that he will not seek reelection, creating a potentially prime pickup opportunity for Republicans in a GOP-leaning state.

“After months of consideration, I have decided not to seek reelection in 2012,” Conrad said in a letter to constituents. “There are serious challenges facing our state and nation, like a $14 trillion debt and America’s dependence on foreign oil. It is more important I spend my time and energy trying to solve these problems than to be distracted by a campaign for reelection.”

[Hat Tip: Memeorandum]

UPDATE.  Lieberman’s out too.

Ryan Grant talking smack?

January 18, 2011 Leave a comment

I could do without this:

Ryan Grant hasn’t played since suffering a season-ending ankle injury in Week 1, but the Packers running back still could end up having an impact on Sunday’s NFC title-game showdown against the Bears.

As if being three-point underdogs (despite being the higher seed and playing on their home field) isn’t enough to feed the Bears’ eternal appetite for motivation through disrespect, they can use this Twitter post from Grant, sent Saturday night after Green Bay’s blowout win in Atlanta:

“1st n last tweet .Pack Fans might want 2 start booking flights 4 feb. Not looking ahead but u c we just have better players than other teams.”

That’s right, as if the Bears need more motivation.  They’re 3 point underdogs on their home field to their most hated rival.  Now they have to deal with Ryan Grant, who hasn’t played since September, making asinine comments.

Not for nothing, but seriously Grant, shut the hell  up.

Speaking for me as well

January 16, 2011 Leave a comment

A single post by Don Surber encapsulates what I’ve been feeling about the Left’s reaction to the Tuscon massacre:

Last week, the left quickly blamed the right for the national tragedy of a shooting spree by a madman who never watched Fox News, never listened to Rush Limbaugh and likely did not know who Sarah Palin is.

Fortunately, the American public rejected out of hand that idiotic notion that the right was responsible.

Rather than apologize, the left wants to change the tone of the political debate.

The left suddenly wants civil discourse.

Bite me.

The left wants to play games of semantics.

Bite me.

The left wants us to be civil — after being so uncivil for a decade.

Bite me.

Be sure to read the entire post.

[Hat Tip: Memeorandum]

Wow!

January 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Last night, Aaron Rodgers gave one of the most unbelievable and dominating performances by an NFL quarterback that I’ve ever seen in my lifetime.  And I’m saying this as a guy who’s been a Packer fan since 1990, and all throughout the Brett Favre years.   Just absolute domination with the football, and he tore apart the Falcons secondary.

And now we’re going to the NFC Championship game!

Go Pack!

BREAKING: Senate making progress on meaningless gestures

January 16, 2011 1 comment

This is an actual story at Politico.  When the pundits scratch their heads as to why Congressional approval ratings are at all-time lows, its partially due to things like this:

Momentum is building to mix the traditionally partisan seating arrangements at the State of the Union later this month, even though there’s no clear plan for how to actually make that happen.

Several Senate Republicans have signed on to the effort, along with a few key House leaders, who have endorsed Democratic Sen. Mark Udall’s proposal to head across the aisle – literally – and sit with members of the opposite party during the annual address on Jan. 25.

All told, more than two dozen members of Congress have publicly endorsed the idea.

Congressional seating is open at the State of the Union on a first-come basis, so anyone can sit anywhere — outside of the first few rows reserved for cabinet officials, Supreme Court justices and certain congressional leaders.

The real test will come the evening of the address, when members will choose to sit with their parties or mix it up. But at least on paper, Udall’s request for a “symbolic gesture of unity” is gaining support.

Unemployment is over 9%.  Economic growth is anemic, and the housing market is in a double-dip.  But Americans should be comforted in the fact that our elected overlords are making progress on Congressional comity and seating arrangements all in the name of bogus “unity”.

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