Thought You'd Never Ask

Just mouthing off -- because I can.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Afterwords

A day late (since I am finally able to sit down and surf the web), here are two excellent Thanksgiving messages:

From Robin of Berkeley: "My First Thankful Thanksgiving" -- no longer a liberal, she now recognizes she's blessed

From Mark Steyn: Americans should be thankful they have one of the last and longest functioning sovereign nation-states and "The World Should Give Thanks for America"

Hear, hear. And as a bonus, here's a concise lesson from Milton Friedman that all Americans should know and understand by heart: there is no free lunch.

All links courtesy of Maggie's Farm.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Disney's dumping princess stories

according to the LA Times:

"By the time they're 5 or 6, they're not interested in being princesses," said Dafna Lemish, chairwoman of the radio and TV department at Southern Illinois University and an expert in the role of media in children's lives. "They're interested in being hot, in being cool. Clearly, they see this is what society values."

MGA Entertainment, the maker of Bratz dolls, knocked the toy industry's blond bombshell off her stilettos by recognizing how little girls' interests have morphed.

"You've got to go with the times," MGA Chief Executive Isaac Larian said. "You can't keep selling what the mothers and the fathers played with before. You've got to see life through their lens."


Well, isn't that comforting. Walt would be proud.

Kids who are interested in being hot or cool at age 5 or 6 are so sad. It makes me infuriated at their stupid parents.

We've never owned one of those obnoxious Bratz dolls, and I wouldn't give one to any little girl as a gift. I steer my kids away from that kind of merchandizing just as I steer them away from the Snoburbia glitz of Britny Spears, etc. I did spring for one of the beautiful American Girl dolls--that company seems to see things through the eyes of the little girls I know and love, and I was happy to support them.

Thankfully in lieu of whatever the forward-looking honchos at 21st-century Disney will now be animating, we can still count on our DVDs of classic-era Disney fare to entertain our kids.


Thursday, November 04, 2010

Life in snoburbia

That's pronounced "SNOB-burbia." As in obnoxious affluent people with an entitlement attitude, helicopter parents, and 7-year-olds playing lacrosse, learning kung fu, and chatting on their cellphones. This lady lampoons the lifestyle and culture as her hobby. Which I find pretty funny, since I too now live in a snoburbia (though I am not OF snoburbia and never will be if I can help it).

I am more of a mislocated Germanic Yankee Puritan-hillbilly-curmudgeon, a product of a very uncool rural lower-middle-class suburb of the 1950s (think "A Christmas Story") and a middle-middle-class bedroom-commuter California suburb of the 1960s (think "Poltergeist"). Consequently I am both too old and too much of an inbred perverse-reverse-snob to be a part of the flock of trendy young snobs in the well-off affluent suburbs in which we have lived since having kids. (After all, I do iron all my husband's dress shirts, do my own housework and yardwork--not "gardening"--and have never had a professional manicure!) We live in snoburbia now for the schools, of course--where my husband's hobby is counting all the BMWs and Mercedes around here under his breath, and where my kids specialize in surviving the shadows cast by snoburbian teenagerdom.

Surviving snoburbia creates character! Experiencing snoburbia is an American blessing! Reading about snoburbia makes me laugh. Too true.

Going forward through the next two years--and goodbye to California

Bookwork Room gives a good wrap-up of Tuesday's historic election day. See also the series of posts at Power Line, "Wasn't That A Mighty Storm?" parts one through six. Of course I've been glued to the internet, talk radio, and Fox News since 7 p.m. on election day, digesting the results. No need (and no interest) for me to add anything to all these great thinkers, topped by George Will.

Danny Lemieux writes a good summary post about our reasons for optimism in going forward. I agree. I do have a personal sadness for the states of California and New York, however. In fact, I have lived in California, Illinois, and New York and I have people I care about living in each of these places now seemingly firmly in the clutches of liberals bent on taking them down. As Lemieux writes:

As for Illinois, California and New York: let there be justice in Democrats presiding over and taking full credit for the disasters they have created. The problems in these two states are far too deep for any change in administration to resolve – the Titanic is already butting up against the iceberg. Schwarzenegger tried and failed to change California. Chicago’s Mayor Daly, smart man that he is, decided to retire before the proverbial financial *.* hit the fan, as Chicago’s debt obligations are far too great for it to dig itself out (rumor has it that Daly is part of a consortium that is positioned to buy-out the lucrative McCormick Expo Center, when it is inevitably privatized to help pay down the debt Daly created). Jerry Brown (CA) and Pat Quinn (IL) are just the buffoons to take their bows at their states’ collapse. Andrew Cuomo (NY)…we shall see.
With Governor Moonbeam at the helm, there is no hope for California now. I fear the tipping point has been passed. If I still lived there today, I would be making plans to leave, along with the other people who flee California every day (read the comments). Not to mention the businesses.

As someone posted online, it it is now up to the heartland between the coasts to save the country. We'll do our best. And we invite all you wiser refugees from the Peoples Republics of the Right and Left Coasts to give us a hand.

See also: "A State in the Rear View Mirror" from the LA Times, December 2008. Prospects are looking much worse for California now.

In the words of the grape farmer of Selma (aka Prof. Victor Davis Hanson):

In California, there is some irony: The philosophy that led the state to the highest tax rates in the country, along with the near-worst schools, largest deficits, and most crumbling infrastructure, was reaffirmed. Now California’s state government will have to deal with the reality that if the highest-tax state in the union raises taxes still higher, it will lose even more high earners than the current 3,000 who leave each week. A Republican Congress is not likely to bail out a bankrupt California. More likely, we will see even more of the present ad hoc government-by-euphemism. More “furloughs” instead of pay cuts for unionized public employees, “temporary” larger class sizes in the schools, more “user fees” imposed by executive order in lieu of getting new taxes passed.

The state will continue to descend into a pyramidal society. On top there is the wealthy, leftist coastal elite from Napa to Hollywood, which is seemingly immune from the effects of high taxes and regulation (and wants more green laws, gay marriage, abortion, and therapeutic bromides). The top of the pyramid is in league with a growing underclass in part dependent upon a huge entitlement industry; this coalition thus favors more taxes, entitlements, unionized public employees, open borders, etc. Meanwhile, a squeezed middle-class private sector is slowly being strangled, shutting down, and leaving.

Perfect. Just the kind of society socialists want--workers at the bottom and elitists on top.

UPDATE: Here's another consequence for California from Tuesday's election day.

UPDATE: Need a relocation coach? Scroll down to see all the businesses that have left California.

UPDATE: No bailouts for California!! Let the Democrats and the people who voted for this mess stew in their own juice.

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Tuesday, November 02, 2010

The most important election day in my life?

That's what many have been saying, and I tend to agree with them. Neal Boortz calls today's election "the ultimate march on Washington."

Do you think they will hear us now? We are sending a message to Obama and all Democrats: we've heard your message and your plans. Don't worry, we understand them. We understand them better than you do. We reject them. And we reject you for calling us stupid, ungrateful, racists. Your Keynesian, progressive, Big Government ideas don't work and they are destroying our economy, our country, and our kids' future. Get out and if the door slams your behinds, we won't be crying for you.

Our work has only begun. And we will need to keep riding the Republicans in office just as much as we are riding the Democrats. Turning over the keys to public office is a powerfully corrupting force. That's why the strictly limited government envisioned and provided for by our nation's Founders was the best of all possible worlds given human nature which they knew so well.

I've been reading about Calvin Coolidge--now there was a President who understood his place in the Federal government. Not perfectly, but he most times stood back and said, "That is not my job to handle or to solve." What a breath of fresh air in these suffocating times of power-grabbing Federal dictators.

I've already voted. Last week I went on two different days to advance voting. The turnout there was tremendous, like I've never seen. The first time there were no available parking spaces and I had to leave without voting. The second time I went I found one of the last parking spaces and took it, then stood in line with my fellow citizens for 25 minutes to cast my votes. The line extended out the door of the building. The crowd was congenial and patient. In fact, lots of people seemed to be appearing there and voting with relish--or with grim determination (which was the look on the face of one man wearing a "Don't Tread on Me" Gasden flag t-shirt as he left the poll). Today, having done my duty, I can spend a few fun hours with my daughter (who is out of school today) at the art museum.

Go, my fellow Americans. Cast your sacred votes with relish and determination. Show them what a mistake happened in 2008, and that we know better now. Democrats, can you hear us yet?

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