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Monthly Archives: April 2011

Anti-Walmart groups in D.C. and New York use their bully pulpit and their shallow understanding of the American economy to spread fear among the residents by claiming Walmart employees don’t make decent wages, and Walmart destroys competition.  Both of these ideas (and others) are not fact-based, but these union-backed efforts don’t really care about facts, they’re concerned with maintaining control and perpetuating the cozy quid-pro-quo relationship that they have with elected officials in these cities. Never mind that shoppers will save 20% on their grocery purchases in an average year, or that localities with Walmart stores end up with more small businesses than they had before; those facts don’t fit the narrative.

Here’s a good Reason TV presentation about the effort to keep Walmart out of big cities. See how silly some of these people look, spouting their blatant falsehoods or total ignorance. It’s sad that power-hungry demagogues want to keep citizens from realizing the benefits of having a Walmart in their city. Walmart, you see, isn’t unionized like a big percentage of the rest of the grocery industry. This is one of the reasons they’re able to run their business so effectively; they don’t have unions imposing ridiculously high salary and benefit burdens and restrictive work rules that have nearly crippled the automobile industry in America. The unions don’t care about the people or their employees; they only care about power and control. Having Walmart infiltrate their strongholds in D.C. and New York means loss of power and influence.

Don’t you just love how pointy-headed liberal academics who couldn’t find their way around the local grocery come up with complex theories and postulations for why nobody can understand the enigmatic Barack Obama (*DfOaLG) as president? We’ve been told ever since Obama hit the scene what a friggin’ genius this guy is. That’s geeeeeenius, of the Wile E. Coyote variety. Waaaaay too smart for the likes of you and me, Mr. and Mrs. Benighted Knuckledragging Clodhopper, to understand. This is what Dana Milbank of the Washington Post thinks of Our Dear Leader:

Seeking a template to understand the enigmatic president, I consulted three leading academics in the fields of psychology and behavior. With their help, I put Obama on the couch and came away with a reasonably coherent diagnosis: There’s too much going on in the poor guy’s head.

“What distinguishes Obama particularly is the depth and carefulness of his thinking, which renders him somewhat unfit for politics,” said Jonathan Haidt, a professor of social psychology at the University of Virginia. “He is a brilliant social and political analyst, which makes it harder for him to play hardball or to bluff.”

Obama’s strengths and weaknesses come from his high degree of “integrative complexity” — his ability to keep multiple variables and trade-offs in mind simultaneously. The integratively simple thinker — say, George W. Bush — has one universal organizing principle that dominates all others, while the integratively complex thinker — Obama — balances many competing goals.

Philip Tetlock, a professor of psychology with the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, found that politicians on the center-left (where Obama dwells) tend to have the highest degree of integrative complexity, followed by politicians on the center-right. Politicians on the far left and far right are the most simple.

Though Tetlock hasn’t applied his methodology to Obama, the 44th president would seem to be the very model of the complex thinker. Among the complex thinker’s advantages, says Tetlock, is the ability to see quickly the trade-offs among policy options, to update his beliefs after finding evidence that disproves his preconceptions, and to predict probable outcomes with accuracy. Among the disadvantages: The complex thinker can suffer from “analysis paralysis” and confusion; he can be perceived as unprincipled or disloyal to the values that elevated him to power; and he can be seen as too willing to make trade-offs.

I didn’t buy it then, and I don’t buy it now. We’ve not seen one shred of evidence of the guy’s intellect. No college transcripts, no published scholarly writings (he was the editor of the law review, and a college law professor, and there’s not one extant example of his writing), no evidence that he wrote his best-selling Dreams from My Father on his own, nothing. Yet, we’re supposed to believe this guy is sooooo smart, he can’t even come far enough down the intellect scale to communicate his lofty thoughts to mere mortals. I noticed they didn’t miss the chance to try and insult the intelligence of George W. Bush.

I love Tetlock’s description of Obama as “center-left” in the political spectrum. He must be a flaming liberal, too; only a liberal could believe Obama is anywhere in the same universe as the “center” of politics.

Obama reminds me of Chance, the gardener in Being There; everything he says is just parroting someone else, but all the pointy-headed intellectuals mistake his utterances for profundity. Interesting that, since most of his public utterances come from a teleprompter.

It makes me think -once again- of a famous quote that perfectly describes the situation:

One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.

George Orwell

 

*Descended from Olympus and Lightworker Genius, on the order of Wile E. Coyote

Go see this video. It explains what the President and his administration can do RIGHT NOW to start decreasing the price of gasoline. Don’t believe him when he says “there’s nothing we can do tomorrow – there’s nothing we can do in two weeks.” There is something that can be done.

Pajamas TV

And while you’re at it, download some gas pump stickers (right click, and ‘save link as’)

I posted yesterday about a great idea for reminding people who shoulders part of the blame for skyrocketing gas prices. Folks commenting at Disrupt the Narrative had developed stickers that could be printed on standard label sheets. You could place these on sticky notes, and leave one at the gas pump every time you filled up (or added any gas – who can afford to fill up anymore?), thanking our Prevaricator in Chief for all his help.

Now, that “sticky note activism” has spread to grocery stores. Higher energy prices means higher food prices, as the costs are passed along to companies that produce, transport, and sell our food.  From Your Daddy, via Doug Ross. Now, some folks will argue that “the president doesn’t set gas prices.” Yes, that’s true, but he is making a lot of decisions that are impacting the cost of energy: banning oil exploration and drilling (when the U.S. has the world’s largest supply of exploitable energy resources), pushing funding toward “green” energy development (which Spain has already proven won’t work), and directing U.S. energy development funding to Columbia and Venezuela.

How about we do some drilling here in the U. S.? How about we stop wasting taxpayer funding on Utopian schemes to create a “green energy” economy? Makes to much sense for eggheads like Obama (*DfOaLG), and his ilk. Now, go here (right click, and click ‘save link as’), and print off your supply of stickers.

 

 

*Descended from Olympus and Lightworker Genius, on the order of Wile E. Coyote

Disrupt the Narrative has a great post about the price of gas, and how we can do something about it. Not directly, mind you, but we can target one of the major contributors for a 2012 exit from office. After all, it was Obama (*DfOaLG) who crowed back in 2008: “energy prices will necessarily skyrocket during my administration.”

The sooner we end “his administration” the sooner we can start aggressively pursuing the vast energy resources that are available to us. What’s great about his post on gas pump activism is in the comments an ingenious fellow by the name of “the botnet” came up with this idea: print the pdf shown below on label sheets, and leave one on every gas pump you hit between now and November 2012. I’m printing off a sheet of them today, since my tank is nearly empty, and I’ll be heading to the station for another $100 fill-up.

fuelpricesstickers (right click on the link, and choose “Save File As”) I think they work an an Avery 5160 label (I haven’t printed it yet, so I’m not sure). There was a suggestion from some cautious reader on DTN that you should affix these labels to the pump on a Post-It Note, so you can’t be accused of vandalism – I’ll leave that up to you. The pic in this post is of a portion of the label sheet.

Use the Comments section to send in a picture of your posted sticker. As soon as I have a chance, I’ll post mine here.

*Descended from Olympus and Lightworker Genius, on the order of Wile E. Coyote