I really do like the cut of this fellow's jib.
Really quite a lot.
Ted Cruz, the rock-ribbed conservative Texas Senator who figures to be a factor in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, told thousands of conservatives Thursday morning that the IRS should go the way of the dodo.
'We need to abolish the IRS,' he said, calling instead for a flat income tax rate and a user-friendly tax return that can be filed on a postcard.
That verbal gauntlet, thrown as much at a near-century of tax collection as at the Obama administration, was Cruz's biggest applause line.
'By virtue of your being here today,' he jokingly cautioned the nation's largest annual gathering of politically conservative activists, 'tomorrow each and every one of you is going to be audited by the IRS.'
Nobody saw that coming.
Apparently Colorado's "Yay! Pot!" revolution is having a few unintended consequences.
As medical marijuana sales expanded into 20 states, legal weed was detected in the bodies of dead drivers three times more often during 2010 when compared to those who died behind the wheel in 1999, according to a new study from Columbia University published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.
“The trend suggests that marijuana is playing an increased role in fatal crashes,” said Dr. Guohua Li, a co-author and director of the Center for Injury Epidemiology and Prevention at Columbia University Medical Center. The researchers examined data from the federal Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), spanning more than 23,000 drivers killed during that 11-year period.
Audio streaming from OS X to an AppleTV is an extremely handy thing. It's something I've been waiting for a proper implementation of for some time.
However, it would be nice if CoreAudio didn't crap itself every 30 minutes when using it.
posted by Mr. Lion @ 17:01 EST | comments (0)
Cars and the Internet: Making idiots for 20+ years.
There was a time, not that long ago, when one needed to at least understand the basic concepts of how an automobile worked in order to operate one. While driving has been hilariously easy for at least fifty years, not that long ago the average joe would be able to operate a vehicle with a few manual systems, perform simple diagnostics and comprehend potentially “bad” noises, and in short be able to run the thing with a reasonable degree of competency.
Likewise, not that long ago, in order to create and consume information on the internet, one needed at least a reasonably basic understanding of how a computer works, how to interact with HTML and other technologies, and how to diagnose simple problems.
This gave us, in both cases, a relatively low signal to noise ratio. While there were some morons who couldn’t drive a car to save their lives, most of us could. While there were some idiots on AOL and other moron-centric net services, most of us could conduct ourselves with at least a passing stab at intelligence and civility. While there will always be some barrier to entry for both, it was at least significant enough to ensure the relatively sane and rational behavior of all.
The last dozen years or so have brought about the complete removal of any such skill set as a prerequisite, and the results speak for themselves. The average motorist these days barely knows the difference between “D” and “R”, and their Maytag on wheels is either “working” or “not working”. Likewise, the internet seems to happen via magic for most, who feel their duty in life is to prove just how large a confederacy of dunces it is possible to create in one place at one time. Youtube, call your office.
The purists, or at least those who could be bothered to cultivate a basic understanding of the things that affect their lives every day, find it hard to understand how the average motorist would describe an accident to a cop as: “Well, I was going, and then I answered my phone, and bang.. the car just went off the road!” Equally alien is the almost hilarious paranoia spawned of the technically uninformed, who seem to think it’s possible for the NSA to be taking photos of them from a webcam located in an adjacent room, sitting in a box, devoid of power and network connectivity.
I’m honestly at a bit of a loss for how to deal with this outbreak of Global Stupidity. On one hand, well, the idiots who can’t drive are likely to crash into a tree and off themselves, and I’m content to leave them to it. On the other, it may well be me they crash in to. Likewise, I could happily ignore people with the technical aptitude of a diced carrot, though put enough of them together and the hype and paranoia they manage to create actually starts to detract from the real issues of the day.
Ultimately, it would appear the solution to both of these problems is to reverse the plague of that which spawned them: Progressivism, the Nanny State and the utter destruction of the public education system. Though as is more and more frequent these days, I find myself wondering if it’s even worth bothering anymore. On one hand, I desire a relatively united country who looks to the stars and holds scientific achievement in the esteem it is due. On the other, with all the pet-issue blithering idiocy I come across each and ever day, I wonder if it’s not perhaps better to say eff it and look forward to going out like a more honest Jordan Belfort.
posted by Mr. Lion @ 16:13 EST | comments (0)
Apparently NY state is so hard up trying to retain business that is fleeing en masse, they're trying out a new
ponzi scheme bribe initiative in which startup businesses pay no tax for ten years. Assuming you're a tech startup. And assuming you're willing to prop up.. ur.. "support" local academia by filling abandoned "unused" space on their campuses. Subject to eleventy billion restrictions, of course, just like a good scam.. ur.. initiative.
No doubt they'll find a few suckers to take them up on it. And if they run those business for 20 years, they'll end up paying several times more in tax than they would have starting their business in a sane state.
But hey, at least they get to blow tax dollars on TV commercials advertising this idiocy. Party on!
Now, maybe if Cuomo had half a frickin' clue, he'd try and roll back the half dozen taxes business owners are saddled with, and perhaps the half dozen taxes on those taxes. Maybe, just maybe, some of said businesses would be willing to stick around.
Nope! That would mean less "revenue" to shovel into the usual tar pits of stupidity. Instead, we'll just have tax-break theater.
I maintain that this state is run by retarded children, forever leaning as hard as they can against a door marked "pull".
posted by Mr. Lion @ 19:02 EST | comments (0)
Still some left.
I often say particularly unappealing things about Europe, because, well, most of Europe is particularly unappealing. An exception, of course, needs to be made for Norway.
Ylvis discovers New York:
posted by Mr. Lion @ 19:02 EST | comments (0)
It's time to play: How much does Obama suck?
Enough to cause me to say nice things about Vladimir Fucking Putin.
Vladimir Putin has vowed to pursue terrorists to their “total annihilation”, in his first public comments since the Volgograd suicide bombings.
In his traditional New Year's Eve address, which was broadcast at midnight from the Far Eastern city of Khabarovsk, (5pm in Moscow), he praised Russia’s unity in the face of both terrorism and natural disasters and promised to continue an unrelenting fight against the bombers.
“In the past year we have faced problems and serious challenges including the inhuman terror attacks in Volgograd and unprecedented disasters in the Far East,” he said.
“Dear friends, we bow our heads in memory of the victims of these terrible attacks. We will strongly and decisively continue the battle against terrorists until their total annihilation,” he said.
That about covers it.