Different River

”You can never step in the same river twice.” –Heraclitus

October 31, 2005

MoveOn.Org as Self-Parody

Filed under: — Different River @ 11:40 pm

Earlier today MoveOn.Org sent an e-mail to its members which began as follows:

Dear MoveOn member,

This morning, with his administration growing weaker by the day, President Bush caved to pressure from the radical fringe of the Republican Party and nominated Samuel Alito to replace Sandra Day O’Connor on the Supreme Court. Alito is a notoriously right-wing judge on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. He has consistently ruled to strip basic protections from workers, women, minorities and the disabled in favor of unchecked power for corporations and special interests.

Yup, that’s it — the guy sits at home at night thinking, “How can I make working black female wheelchair riders as unprotected as possible? That’s the way to a stronger America! Bwaaaahhahahaha!!!!!”

As time goes on, MoveOn.Org looks more and more like the Right’s parody of the Left, rather than the actual Left. The trouble is, it is the actual Left! But if I had set out to write a parody of the left for The Onion, I could not have done better than MoveOn.Org’s actual publications.

Until liberals start to come up with actual arguments for their positions, instead of just hurling insults, they are not going to have any credibility with the general public.

UPDATE: (11/2/2005):

As it happens MoveOn.org’s charge is pretty much the opposite of the facts.

Economics of October 31

Filed under: — Different River @ 10:48 pm

Jamie Jeffords has some thoughts on the day:

My sister just left to take my neice trick or treating. Every year at this time, I make the same observatio: we spend 364 days a year telling our kids there is no such thing as a free lunch, then comes Halloween where they learn there is a free lunch, and it is 95% sugar.

He also links to a great cartoon. Click here.

Closing the Loop

Filed under: — Different River @ 9:55 pm

If you remember the news from the late 1980s, especially if you lived in Southern California, you probably remember the McMartin Preschool child molestation case, in which several pre-school teachers were accused of sexually abusing children in satanic rituals that included flying around the city (no airplane), drinking the blood of a beheaded baby (though no headless babies were found and no babies were missing), and of using a room full of lions to scare children to do what they were told. (More examples at the end of this page.)

When the case came to trial, a survey commissioned by the defense found that 97.5% of people in the area believed the defendants were guilty, but their motion for a change of venue was denied. Nevertheless, all defendants were found not guilty of all charges except one, who deadlocked two juries before the charges were dismissed — after he spent five years in jail during the investigation, preliminary hearing, and two trials, and was financially ruined by the cost of his defense.

The loop is now starting to close — one of the children, now 30 years old, has told the Los Angeles Times what happened: how he was induced to lie, how not even his mother believed him when he tried to take it back.

Anytime I would give them an answer that they didn’t like, they would ask again and encourage me to give them the answer they were looking for. It was really obvious what they wanted. I know the types of language they used on me: things like I was smart, or I could help the other kids who were scared.

I felt uncomfortable and a little ashamed that I was being dishonest. But at the same time, being the type of person I was, whatever my parents wanted me to do, I would do. And I thought they wanted me to help protect my little brother and sister who went to McMartin.

But the lying really bothered me. One particular night stands out in my mind. I was maybe 10 years old and I tried to tell my mom that nothing had happened. I lay on the bed crying hysterically—I wanted to get it off my chest, to tell her the truth. My mother kept asking me to please tell her what was the matter. I said she would never believe me. She persisted: “I promise I’ll believe you! I love you so much! Tell me what’s bothering you!” This went on for a long time: I told her she wouldn’t believe me, and she kept assuring me she would. I remember finally telling her, “Nothing happened! Nothing ever happened to me at that school.”

She didn’t believe me.

Is ‘Getting Drunk’ Australian?

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:50 pm

Different Brother writes:

Yet again, a story that works equally well in both a real news site article and in The Onion.

Getting drunk part of Australian identity, study finds

Mon Oct 31, 9:13 AM ET

SYDNEY, (AFP) – Occasionally getting drunk is a core part of national identity for most Australians, according to new research.

The National Drug and Alcohol Research Council study of 1,500 Australians found that some 58 percent of people agreed that sometimes having too much to drink was “simply part of the Australian way of life.”

Here’s a story that’s actually from The Onion at about the same intellectual level.

Yes, Competition Really Exists

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:35 pm

One of the main assertions of economics that people find hard to accept is that markets, not sellers, set prices. In other words, economists often assume that “the market” sets the price, and companies sell at the market price, choosing how much to sell, but not what price to charge. People — including, people taking an introductory course in economics, and journalists — find this hard to believe, probably because when they want to buy something, they walk into a store and see prices on tags, or call up a company and ask what the price is and get an answer.

The problem is, when economists say “the market not the seller sets the price,” we don’t mean “the market comes to the grocery and attaches a pricetag to a box of crackers,” but rather, if the seller sets a price that’s too high, no one will buy — and if they set a price that’s too low, they’ll be out of business, or at least out of stock in rather short order.

Joshua Sharf points out a recent example of how this works, in what is called in the airline industry “the Southwest effect” — that is, Southwest Airlines enters a market, uses its lower costs to set lower prices than other airlines, and those other airlines have to reduce their prices to Southwest’s.

October 27, 2005: The Southwest Effect?

Southwest Airlines finally announced its initial routes and fares from Denver, and as promised, it’s a small start. With 13 daily departures, they’ll have more than jetBlue and Airtran, but fewer than such titans as United (309), Frontier (153), and Great Lakes (66). (Hey, don’t laugh. Great Lakes can get you from Denver to Kingman, AZ in just five easy hops.)

They’ll fly to Chicago ($79 one-way), Las Vegas, and Phonenix ($59 one-way, each), starting on January 3, with a 21-day advance purchase. Just for fun, I looked up the current low airfares from Denver to each of those cities, roundtrip, January 5, returning January 8. They are, Chicago: $252, Las Vegas, $206, and Phoenix, $178. (Source: Orbitz)

Now, of course, I’ll have to track those numbers daily until service starts, to see if there really is going to be a Southwest effect.

October 28, 2005: Southwest Effect II

Well, that sure didn’t take long. Next year’s fares from DIA to Chicago, Vegas, and Phoenix drop to match Southwest’s. So far, not all the carriers who had been low-fare have moved to match, and for some reason United it still $40 higher on the Las Vegas route. It’ll be interesting to see which airlines try to maintain higher fares, and for how long.

In other words, those other airlines don’t get to set their prices. At most, the lowest cost producer gets to set the price for the entire market. (But even that price is constrained by what buyers are willing to pay.)

Do “suitcase nukes” exist?

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:20 pm

Richard Miniter says no. Or at least, highly unlikely.

October 30, 2005

Peace and Opportunities

Filed under: — Different River @ 1:51 pm

A reader writes:

Somehow, I think the headline to this article is over-hopeful:

“Israelis, Palestinians to Cease Fighting”

By IBRAHIM BARZAK, Associated Press Writer

Not only is it over-hopeful, but it underscores the futility of Sharon’s withdrawal from Gaza:

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to halt nearly a week of fighting after militant groups pledged to halt rocket fire on southern Israeli towns, Palestinian officials said Sunday.

The deal, which Israeli officials refused to confirm, would bring an end to the second serious round of violence since Israel completed its withdrawal from the Gaza Strip last month.

Remember the whole point of the withdrawal from Gaza was that it was supposed to reduce violence. Palestinians in Gaza were attacking and killing Jews with rockets, suicide bombers, and sniper attacks, and the “solution” was clear — get the Jews out, and the Palestinians will stop fighting, because they are jusdt upset that Jews live among them.

Turns out, of course, that they are upset Jews live anywhere, and they’ll attack Jews anytime they can get within rocket range of them. And it’s a lot easier for them to obtain, set up, and use the rockets, now that they have Gaza all to themselves.

Of course, the article has yet another example of how the media can use the pretense of objectivity to mislead people as to what’s going on:

While many had expected the withdrawal to restart peace efforts, the two sides have so far failed to capitalize on the opportunity.

The “two sides”? Read that carefully: one side withdraws from an area and expels their own citizens for the sake of peace, and the other side responds by shooting rockets into the other side’s residential neighborhoods. But “the two sides” have “failed to capitalize on the opportunity”? One of them created the opportunity! It was the other side that failed to capitalize on the opportunity — or more precisely, they capitalized an the opportunity: the opportunity to shoot more rockets and kill more Jews, not the opportunity for peace.

Peace which, apparently, is not their objective. Any policy predicated on the assumption — contrary to all evidence — that peace is their objective is doomed to failure.

Free Trade and Trinkets

Filed under: — Different River @ 12:50 pm

Don Boudreaux of Cafe Hayek notes that one popular argument against free trade is not only in error from an economic standpoint, but it doesn’t even make any sense:

A rhetoric strategy used by opponents of free trade is to describe the things that domestic consumers buy from abroad as superfluities — cheap, pathetic, contemptible indulgences that consumers selfishly gobble up from foreign producers and, in the process, damage the domestic economy.

I first noticed this strategy in early 2001 when I heard Patrick Buchanan speak at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Buchanan criticized free traders who, in his view, are content to see the U.S. economy destroyed by policies whose only ‘benefit’ is to allow American consumers to buy self-indulgent, unnecessary gadgets “down at the mall.”

[Two other similar examples]

If it were true that American imports indeed are mostly low-value, insignificant, contemptible knick-knacks, then this fact would imply that the American industries destroyed by foreign competition are those that compete with such foreign producers — that is, American industries that produce baubles, trinkets, and T-shirts.

If protectionists such as Patrick Buchanan and Lou Dobbs dismiss as worthless the things that American consumers buy from foreigners, consistency demands that these pundits also dismiss as worthless the things that American industry would be prompted to produce by higher tariffs and other protectionist measures.

These protectionists certainly should not be permitted to get away with suggesting that protectionism would create domestic industries and jobs that produce worthwhile, cutting-edge goods and services. Instead, these protectionists should be forced to admit explicitly that the American industries they seek to reinvigorate are those that produce worthless baubles, trinkets, and T-shirts.

I sometimes wonder if opponents of free trade really want to prevent foreigners from having jobs so intensely that they are willing to impoverish Americans to accomplish that goal — or if they’re just really, really ignorant.

A Datum for Thought

Filed under: — Different River @ 2:43 am

Percent of all births in the U.S. which are to single mothers: 35.7%.

October 28, 2005

History of Segregation

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:25 pm

Clayton Cramer takes issue with my characterization of the roots of segregation:

Different River asks how segregation could have collapsed so quickly:

how else could a centuries-old system have collapsed in less than two decades?

The problem with this question is that segregation was not a centuries-old system. Segregation was largely a post-Civil War phenomenon. De Tocqueville (among others) noticed that in the South, blacks and whites socialized and engaged in public amusements together in a way that simply did not happen in the North. Under slavery, there was no practical way to segregate housing, because slaves lived on the owner’s plantation (with a few exceptions for absentee owners and some urban slaves), and of course, schooling wasn’t an issue: most slave states made it unlawful to educate a slave, and many of the Southern states didn’t even have public schools until just before (and in some cases, just after) the Civil War.

Allow me to clarify:

By “a centuries-old system” I did not mean “segregated facilities,” but rather, “a system in which blacks retain rights inferior to those retained by whites.”

As such, the period of slavery is included because most blacks were slaves and no whites were (i.e., whites had the inherent right not to be enslaved), and even free blacks did not,in general, have the same rights as whites. Racial segregation was simply not necessary when everyone could assume that any blacks they saw were slaves, and be right almost all the time. It’s true that schools were not segregated — but as Mr. Cramer points out, that’s because it was illegal to educate slaves (and I believe in some states, free blacks as well). I consider that a rather extreme form of segregated schooling, not the absence of segregation. As for housing, physical separation was simply moot when when everyone could assume that any blacks they saw were slaves, and be right almost all the time.

Racism — by which in this case I mean not how people feel but how people act — was quite old, probably occasioned by the interaction between the psychological need to justify slavery when the conscience knows it’s wrong, and the fact that nearly all blacks were slaves and (nearly?) all slaves were black.

The Economics of Segregation

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:02 pm

Clayton Cramer points to an article by Thomas Sowell, in which we learn the original of segregated public transit. Libertarians opposed to desegregation on “not the government’s business” grounds, take note:

Far from existing from time immemorial, as many have assumed, racially segregated seating in public transportation began in the South in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Those who see government as the solution to social problems may be surprised to learn that it was government which created this problem. Many, if not most, municipal transit systems were privately owned in the 19th century and the private owners of these systems had no incentive to segregate the races.

These owners may have been racists themselves [or not -- who knows? --DR] but they were in business to make a profit — and you don’t make a profit by alienating a lot of your customers. There was not enough market demand for Jim Crow seating on municipal transit to bring it about.

It was politics that segregated the races because the incentives of the political process are different from the incentives of the economic process. Both blacks and whites spent money to ride the buses but, after the disenfranchisement of black voters in the late 19th and early 20th century, only whites counted in the political process.

The incentives of the economic system and the incentives of the political system were not only different, they clashed. Private owners of streetcar, bus, and railroad companies in the South lobbied against the Jim Crow laws while these laws were being written, challenged them in the courts after the laws were passed, and then dragged their feet in enforcing those laws after they were upheld by the courts.

These tactics delayed the enforcement of Jim Crow seating laws for years in some places. Then company employees began to be arrested for not enforcing such laws and at least one president of a streetcar company was threatened with jail if he didn’t comply.

Imagine that — if the (white?) bus driver had allowed Rosa Parks to keep her seat, he would have been arrested!

Initially, segregation meant that whites could not sit in the black section of a bus any more than blacks could sit in the white section. But whites who were forced to stand when there were still empty seats in the black section objected. That’s when the rule was imposed that blacks had to give up their seats to whites.

And he makes the same point I was trying to make earlier:

It was not necessary for an overwhelming majority of the white voters to demand racial segregation. If some did and the others didn’t care, that was sufficient politically, because what blacks wanted did not count politically after they lost the vote.

Just as it was not necessary for an overwhelming majority of whites to demand racial segregation through the political system to bring it about, so it was not necessary for an overwhelming majority of blacks to stop riding the streetcars, buses and trains in order to provide incentives for the owners of these transportation systems to feel the loss of money if some blacks used public transportation less than they would have otherwise.

And the economic bottom line:

People who decry the fact that businesses are in business “just to make money” seldom understand the implications of what they are saying. You make money by doing what other people want, not what you want.

And a warning for liberal supporters of judicial activism:

Legal sophistries by judges “interpreted” the 14th Amendment’s requirement of equal treatment out of existence. Judicial activism can go in any direction.

UPDATE: (10/30/2004):

Don Boudreaux has more.

An Anti-War Employer?

Filed under: — Different River @ 1:13 pm

There’s a fine line between evil, and just plain mean:

Woman Fired For Missing Work After Seeing Husband Off To War

POSTED: 9:57 am EDT October 27, 2005
UPDATED: 10:04 am EDT October 27, 2005

CALEDONIA, Mich. — A woman who took an unpaid leave of absence from work to see her husband off to war has been fired after failing to show up for her part-time receptionist job the day following his departure [to Iraq].

“It was a shock,” said Suzette Boler, a 40-year-old mother of three and grandmother of three. “I was hurt. I felt abandoned by people I thought cared for me. I sat down on the floor and cried for probably two hours.”

Officials at her former workplace, Benefit Management Administrators Inc., confirmed that Boler was dismissed when she didn’t report to work the day after she said goodbye to her husband of 22 years.

Suzette Boler had received permission to take off work the week leading up to her husband’s departure. As a part-time employee at Benefit Management, she did not receive vacation pay and was not compensated for her time off.

At least they are admitting it.

I wonder if any part of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act applies to military spouses. If not, perhaps it should.

October 27, 2005

More From the “Religion of Peace”: “Israel must be wiped off the map.”

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:04 pm

The new president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, had this to say yesterday:

Ahmadinejad denounced Israel and said a new wave of Palestinian attacks “will wipe this stigma from the face of the Islamic world.” Citing the words of the founder of Iran’s Islamic revolution, the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Ahmadinejad said: “Israel must be wiped off the map.”

Notice that according to Ahmadinejad, the mere existence of Israel is a “stigma [on] the face of the Islamic world.”

The mere existence. It doesn’t matter if Israel intends no harm to anyone, treats the Palestinians like royalty, or gives up land (except maybe all of it — remember, this is what they say after the Gaza evactuation!). It’s mere existence is the problem. And is not a political problem, but a religious problem — a problem “of Islam.”

I’m sure there are many peace-loving people among the world’s 1.3 billion or so Mulsims — but there’s no denying that certain elements of the Islamic leadership make no pretense that they are leading a “religion of peace.”

In Memoriam, Rosa Parks

Filed under: — Different River @ 3:42 pm

Rosa Parks passed away Monday night. She was 92.

“Jane Galt” has some thoughts on the significance of her most famous achievement.

The question is, roughly, since Rosa Parks had the full backing of the NAACP’s lawyers, and knew she would might be a test case, was her action truly courageous? After all, others before her had been arrested for refusing to give up a seat on a bus; why was she different? The previous person arrested was an unemployed unwed single mother and Rosa Parks was a respectable married woman with a respectable job; according to this theory it was not her courage that mattered, but the fact that she her personal characteristics would draw more sympathy and highlight more clearly the injustice of the bus segregation laws. Jane says Mrs. Parks was taking a risk of being arrested and maybe beaten, therefore she was courageous and that’s that. Some of her commenters say that she was deliberately being a test case, so she was just playing her part in a well-orchestrated plan; in effect an actor reading her lines, albeit in a real-life drama.

They may both be right to a degree, but in either case I think the misses the point: The point is, segregation was going to continue until someone did something about it. It was not inevitable that someone would, and it was certainly not inevitable that that someone would be peaceful and nonviolent about it.

It is quite likely that by 1955, even most Southern whites were not all that enthusiastic about there support for segregation (how else could a centuries-old system have collapsed in less than two decades?), but the fact is, in most situations, most people just “go with the flow.” I suspect that in 1955, the white Southerners consisted of a relatively small proportion of extremely ardent supporters of segregation, an even smaller contingent of ardent opponents of segregation, and a vast middle of people who didn’t care all that much, didn’t think about it all that much, but supported segregation by default since, well, it had just always been there and things seemed fine to them, so why change?

This middle had to be moved — and it had to be moved by clear and convincing moral suasion, not by violence that would engender fear of change. The “go with the flow” contingent had to be made to feel uncomfortable supporting segregation by showing them it was clearly and obviously unjust. They would still “go with the flow” — but the flow would change. The alternatives were to keep things as they were, or to attempt violent rebellion which would have entrenched the “go with the flow” crowd in their pro-segregation position.

Rosa Parks — and those like her — provided the moral suasion necessary the “change the flow.” There was no guarantee that without her and others like her that “the flow” was ever going to change.

One of the clear lessons of the history of injustice (and probably the history of everything) is that most people just go with the flow — only a few think about where that flow is going, and fewer still are able to change it. Rosa Parks was one of those few. It doesn’t really matter whether she feared jail, or felt safe with an army of lawyers and activists. Someone had to play that role, and she played it.

For the record: There were other, previous bus boycotts — 1953 in Baton Rouge, and even previously in Montgomery in 1900 — but although those succeeded in desegregating bus systems (only temporarily — until 1920 in Montgomery), the didn’t spark the nationwide attention that Rosa Parks’ 1955-56 boycott did. Much of this was due to the efforts of Edgar D. (“E.D.”) Nixon, the President of the Alabama branch of the NAACP (of which Rosa Parks was the Secretary), who organized the boycott and recruited Martin Luther King, Jr. to be its public face — in part because he though King would be more charismatic. Nixon was so right about King that most people have now completely forgotten about Nixon.

October 24, 2005

New Fed Chairman Nominated

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:36 pm

Alan Greenspan will be term-limited out of his job as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve on January 31, 2006. (Actually, he was appointed to a fifth four-year term as chairman less than four years ago, but he is being term-limited off his position on the Board itself, and he can’t be Chairman without being on the Board.)

President Bush has nominated Ben Bernanke to succeed Greenspan.

Talk about big shoes to fill, in terms of public reputation. Bernanke is a solid choice, who has a long career as a respected economist and is now Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. It’s a very solid choice.

UPDATE:

The Wall Street Journal has collected the thoughts of several economist-bloggers (not including me, but that’s OK.)

“Karl Rove’s Garage Proves to Be Typical”

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:31 pm

It must be a very slow news day, when AP runs a story like this:

Karl Rove’s Garage Proves to Be Typical

By DARLENE SUPERVILLE, Associated Press Writer

Monday, October 17, 2005

(10-17) 16:57 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) — He is “the architect” who steered George W. Bush to victory four times, twice as Texas governor and twice as president.

But can Karl Rove organize his own garage? Can the master of Bush’s political planning figure out where to put the ladders, paint cans and cardboard boxes?

There was no car in the garage. And the stuff left behind turned out not to be much different from what gathers dust inside most American garages.

The inventory, seen from outside:

  • Some cardboard file boxes stacked one on top of the other, labeled “Box 6,”"Box 4″ and what appears to be “Box 7.” No sign of boxes 1, 2, 3 and 5.
  • What appear to be paint cans stacked alongside a folded, folding chair.
  • A rather large wood crate marked “FRAGILE” and painted with arrows indicating which way is up. On top of the crate, two coolers.
  • A tall aluminum ladder.
  • A snow shovel leaned in front of another cardboard box.
  • Wicker baskets inside of wicker baskets on top of a shelf running the length of the rear wall. Transparent plastic storage bins crammed with indiscernible stuff. Another cardboard box.
  • In one corner, the rear wheel of a bicycle sticks out, along with what appears to be a helmet.
  • Another ladder, this one green, leaning sideways.

As The Common Room notes:

Transparent plastic storage bins crammed with indiscernible stuff? Typical Rovian perfidy. And we must know whether the green ladder leans left or right. Everything depends upon knowing this fact. Everything.

Either this is a joke, or the media are even more messed up than I thought!

October 21, 2005

New Developments in History!

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:32 pm

The study of history, that is. Apparently, the original copy of the decoded Zimmerman telegram has been discovered. This is what got the U.S. involved in World War I.

North Korean Experience

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:31 pm

If youhave any doubt that North Korea is simply on large prison ruled by torturing thugs, read this story — and keep in mind while you are reading that this is how they treat a guy who joined their side.

October 20, 2005

Regulation by Lawsuit?

Filed under: — Different River @ 5:59 pm

Today the House of Representatives passed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which restricts the ability of municipalities to sue gun manufacturers for damages caused by criminal misuse of products which are legally manufactured and legally sold. (In other words, it will prohibit suits like these.)

For the moment, put aside the question of whether this law is a good idea (See here and here for a discussion of the rationale behind the law).

Instead, consider the fact that over the decade or so that this law has been under discussion, proponents of the law always claimed that the lawsuits in question were attempts by cities to impose gun control measures by lawsuit that could not be imposed through the democratic process (i.e., by having elected legislatures pass laws), and to impose gun control measures nationwide, when they properly had jurisdiction only within their own municipal borders. Opponents of the law, of course, claimed that these lawsuits were only attempts to hold gun makers responsible for the damage caused by their products. (Leave aside also the question of whether the damage was caused by the “products” as opposed to the people using the products.)

Now that the law has passed, one of the leading opponents has — most likely inadvertently — conceded the other side’s argument! According to the AP,

“This legislation will make the unregulated gun industry the most pampered industry in America,” said Kristen Rand, director of the Violence Policy Center.

(Emphasis added.)

Now obviously it’s preposterous to claim that the gun industry is actually “unregulated.” It’s one of the most regulated manufacturing industries there is, right up there with pharmaceuticals and automobiles. Clayton Cramer has a list of sample regulations, and this is only a partial list — the actual regulations would fill several books. (UPDATE: Clayton now has a links to two large collections of BATFE regulations, here and here — the PDF version of these, which are literally books, take up 365 and 475 pages, respectively. And not one owrd of those regulations will be cancelled or changed by the new, 23-page statute.)

Clearly, by the term “[un]regulated,” Kristen Rand cannot mean that the gun industry is not subject to regulations by Congress, state legislatures, and bureaucrats — because it is, has been for a long time, and this new law will do nothing to change that. But she does say that this law makes the industry “unregulated,” and all this law does is say that if gun manufacturers comply with all the regulations regarding manufacturing and distribution, they aren’t liable for manufacturing and distribution. (They can still be sued if they violate those laws — e.g., if they knowingly sell a gun to a felon who flunks a federal background check — or if their products are actually defective.) So Rand must mean that if cities can’t sue to get gun makers to change their practices, the gun industry is unregulated!

Clearly, she has conceded the point that proponents of this law have been making all along — that the purpose of the lawsuits was to impose through the court regulations that could not be passed through the democratic process.

Cindy Sheehan vs. Hillary Clinton

Filed under: — Different River @ 1:33 am

Far-left “anti-war” activist Cindy Sheehan is criticizing Hillary Clinton — and saying she is just like Rush Limbaugh. Of one of Clinton’s public statements, Sheehan said, “That sounds like Rush Limbaugh to me.”

If Hillary sounds to her like Rush Limbaugh, how far left do you have to go to sound liberal to Cindy Sheehan?

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