Siding with J.T.P.. Specter’s comeuppance. Overpaid and out of business. Plus more.
ORDINARY FOLKS LIKE US
Re: Robert Stacy McCain’s The Ordinary American:
Common sense ain’ t common, and “ordinary,” as it certainly
applies to Joe Wurzelbacher, sure ain’t ordinary. I’m 64,
conservative and Christian, and I aspire to be as “ordinary” as
Joe. Thank God for him.
— Mike Smith
Welcome back to the 1770s. The LibTories want to control hoi polloi, who exist to finance zany academic schemes devised by those more inclined to think than to observe.
What is needed now is what was needed then: Revolution. Only
force will end the farce.
— David Govett
PRIDE BEFORE A FALL
Re: Thirsty McWormwood’s Dear Arlen:
I’ve been wondering how ol’ Arlen must be feeling about the Democrat “Big Tent” and this piece renders a nice summary. In the world of “hard hardball” the (now) junior senator from PA seems to have plunked himself on the posterior, which, I must admit, is a very impressive feat.
Hubris can deliver awesome and fascinating lessons. I hope that the RNC leadership understands the lessons here, but I’m not so sure. Hint: look beyond the spectacle of ol’ Arlen himself to the lesson about trifling with this bunch of Dems. It’s a lesson neither President Bush could master.
As to the (now) junior Senator from PA, this is what “just
desserts” looks like, right?
— Reid Bogie
POOR MEANS NO CHOICES
Re: Joseph Lawler’s No One Vouching for Them:
I believe that Joseph Lawler is mistaken when he writes, “Furthermore, neither he (Obama) nor Arne Duncan entrusted their own children to the D.C. public school system, sending them to prestigious private schools instead.”
It is true that the Obama girls study at a prestigious private
school, but I think Duncan lives in the Alexandria public school
district, and sends his children to public school. But this
explains the resistance of white suburbia to vouchers and school
choice. Professionals like Duncan work hard so that they can
choose their neighborhood. The primary factor in the choice of
neighborhood is the quality of the school district. White
upper-middle class America already has “school choice,” because
they can choose where to live. Of course, this is true of Black
upper-middle class America. Happily, prosperous white people
generally have no problems with prosperous Black people living in
their school district. They may be concerned, however, should
families like Fields, or Shavazz, with average incomes of $24,300
per year, have a school choice that includes their suburban
— Dan Martin
All good socialists remember (if not truly understand) the
teachings of Hegel, Marx and Lenin. Hegel wrote, “The true
courage of civilized nations is readiness for sacrifice in the
service of the state, so that the individual counts as only one
amongst many. The important thing here is not personal mettle but
aligning oneself with the universal.” So, where is the surprise
that Obama, his acolytes and the Democratic s are quickly willing
to “consign these 1700 kids to mediocrity”? The NEA, like
all unions no matter what the level, has a fiduciary
responsibility to its members, to protect its membership; the
relationship between member and union is based on tshis
assumption of mutual self-interests, but experienced members of
unions have learned that the numerous person in position of
power, much like many members of Congress, choose to supersede
their interest above all others. This is certainly the case
in Washington D.C. and the strangulation of it voucher
programs. The problems with the school system
are myriad, and choice is but one answer. Quality teachers want
to teach. We do not fear school choice vouchers. No one tool is
going to fix our nation’s schools. Choice does not address the
choking levels of bureaucracy that kill both innovation and
initiative. Privatizing schools, charter schools and alternative
schools are a great place to start, but what is called for is
more than just rhetoric about vouchers.
What can be more revolutionary in today’s climate than going against the growing momentum of federalism? The radical (though most) logical solution is block grants to the states. If the federal government must be involved at all, let it set standards (and set them high, for American schools still produces some of the greatest minds in the world), otherwise, let the federal government get out of the way. States have proven to be hot houses of innovation in many areas, including health care and welfare reform. A one size fits all, such as NCLB, is a formula for waste, bureaucracy and inefficiency. Fifty experiments in fifty states not only increases the probability of finding many solid solutions at lower costs, but it also returns authority and responsibility to where it belongs: with the people. Letting go of power is antithetical to Washington’s ethos, but this is, at least for now, the government of the people for the people. Teachers are not the problem. Teachers are part of the solution. And if you are reading this, please remember to thank a teacher.
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York
Re: Ralph R. Reiland’s The Collectivist Fix Is In:
Having bought my first and last American-designed vehicle in 1973, normally I wouldn’t have a dog in this fight. I wouldn’t buy an American design if the Government gave me the money. The present situation bears on part of the reason I wouldn’t own one. That doesn’t mean I think the current situation is the least bit desirable nor do I think those that want American designs are going to like the outcome of Government Motors when all is said and done.
When I bought that ‘73 Ford Pinto, UAW labor cost (wage and benefit) was something like $22.00 an hour. Not long after this Chrysler was headed to its first bankruptcy. I was making less than $3.00 so my wages and benefits cost to my employer was around $4-4.50 an hour. I had a two year degree at that time. By the time Chrysler did go bankrupt I was well into my four year degree and my cost had risen to around $7-8.00 an hour. It wasn’t until around 2000 that I actually matched the hourly rate of the average UAW worker who needs but a high school diploma to start out at $28.00 an hour. Most people with an undergraduate degree can relate to where I’m coming from here. To add insult to injury here, the people who made my current car 20 years ago make essentially the same hourly rate as their brothers in the UAW but their cost is similar to my cost after 37 years in my profession. Doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the UAW’s 50% higher wages and benefits cost makes everything they make cost at least $2000.00 more expensive than their non-union competitors. I used to work with rocket scientists so I’ve confirmed this with them. Why do you think Chevy is pushing the $40,000 Volt rather than a direct competitor to what is now a $21,000 Toyota Prius? How many people in this country do you think can really afford a $40,000 vehicle?
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?