The Extinction of Opinion


Filed Under Humor on Jun 15 

Jerry Seinfeld recently said he stays away from playing at colleges because the younger generation is too “conservative.” Not politically speaking, but as in they are too sensitive and politically correct. Basically, they can’t take joke, or receive a statement or “opinion” without jumping to conclusions and slapping a label on someone.

You can’t have an opinion anymore. Your statements definitely make you a “racist,” “sexist,” “homophobe,” “misogynist,” “androgynist,” “prejudice,” and labels go on. What happened to having an opinion. You can’t say anything anymore and it’s incredibly disappointing. What is going to happen in these coming years, that people no longer listen to someone’s opinion and actually hear what they have to say. “I respect your opinion, but I disagree,” isn’t part of their dialogue.

If you disagree with immigration policy for “Dreamers” you’re a “racist.” You’re not an American with a vote and an opinion.

The Georgetown Business Improvement District, or BID, wants a pie-in-sky solution to traffic problems in historic, tony, and expensive Georgetown. As in Washington DC. In fact, it’s a gondola-in-the-sky solution that would have the metal and plastic bubbles you see on ski hills, suspended from cables, crossing over the Potomac river and bringing pedestrians to and from Rossyln, in Arlington, Virginia. There’s a D.C. Metro stop in Rossyln, unlike in Georgetown which is pleading for one. But until the subway comes to Georgetown, whenever that is, D.C. Council has funded a $35,000 feasibility study on using Gondolas to alleviate congestion on Key Bridge and get pedestrians between the two well-heeled neighborhoods.

One wonders how effective gondolas would be at moving reasonably significant numbers of pedestrians between the two shores of the Potomac. Perhaps Durham boats manned by history buffs could be just as effective, seeing they would be a lot cheaper than the estimated $ 50 to $ 80 million the Gondolas would cost. And about as fast as gondolas as well. Not particularly stable at high speeds, to put it mildly, gondolas have been used in hilly areas and amusement parks for good reason: they are slow and carry few people at a time. But then again, maybe the aim is not to carry large amounts of pedestrians between the two neighborhoods but rather the (un)elected few. As in Georgetown University academics lucky enough to live in Rosslyn, who could gaze thoughtfully down at the water as they slowly cross the river on the way to and from work.

If, on the other hand, it is meant to move large numbers of commuters, a gondola seems expensive and absurd. But perhaps there is a way out. The Potomac Gondola – or whatever they name it – could serve as a tourist attraction as well by combining it with Exorcist film locations. Perhaps it could cross near 3,600 Prospect Street, the house where all that head-spinning action took place. It’s almost next to the river and very close to Georgetown University campus. Perfect for tourists, students and staff! And when a Metro stop for Georgetown is finally built – at an estimated cost of $1.5 billion – the gondola can continue as a tourist trap. Literally. Imagine being stuck in a suspended gondola in mid-winter when the system fails, staring down at the icy waters of the Potomac. Or at that house at 3600 Prospect Street. Who wouldn’t pay for that?

Apparently Rand Paul’s senate voting record shows that he actually votes with the GOP on a majority of bills. And that he actually collaborates a fair amount. As well as with current Tea Party rival Ted Cruz. In Nevada, however, it seems the Pauls’ posse – their supporters in the Sliver State – who stormed the halls of local power in 2012, have been ousted in elections held since that date. The buzz is that they don’t work well with other Nevada Republicans and were focused on helping Rand Paul to the exclusion perhaps of other Nevada GOP politicians and activists. That seems to have gone over as well as blowing smoke in a blackjack dealer’s face or spilling your beverage on the felt in Vegas. The question now seems to be whether Rand’s supporters in Nevada will make nice and be more of team players. Do they want to? Isn’t the point of Paul and his libertarian supporters to change – a nice way of saying fire – the GOP establishment in Washington DC who they view as guilty of the same sins as any big government Democrat?

Yes and no. Rand Paul seems to honestly want to reach out and broaden his own tent, but as a libertarian, will he work with those Republicans who clearly aren’t? His senate record shows he consistently votes against government surveillance of Americans and that puts him at odds on occasion with defense hawks. His foreign policy stance in general is a problem for conservatives and his words in New Hampshire on immigration – “the 11 million, I think, are never going home, don’t need to be sent home” – riles them as well. But above all, if Rand Paul is to be a true contender, his supporters will have to show that they can work with other GOP members. Unless Rand and his supporters, in Nevada and elsewhere, are truly not interested in collaboration. In which case Rand starts to look like a better dressed, and cuter, version of Ross Perot.

It’s not just Ted Kennedy, but the Kennedys just don’t have the best run of luck, or it could also be karma. However, the fact that President Obama is speaking in Ted Kennedy’s honor at Edward M. Kennedy Institute makes for a lot of distasteful humor because of one not-so-tiny, but selectively forgotten by Democrats and that is the death of Mary Jo Kopechne.

Ted Kennedy was driving the vehicle and Mary Jo was the passenger when it drove over a bridge at Chappaquiddick Island, and controversy has ensued every since then because Ted Kennedy didn’t report it for many hours later and somehow walked away without any responsibility and became a Senator for decades and now our President is singing his praises.

Obama said at the EMK Institute, “What if we carried ourselves more like Ted Kennedy?” Well, I bet a lot of criminals wish they carried themselves more like Ted Kennedy. Vice President Joe Biden said, “He was an anchor for many of us in our personal lives.” Oh the irony… Ted Kennedy’s Oldsmobile was also the anchor to Mary Jo Kopechne’s life.

You have to question the integrity and ethics of a person who praises and applauds a tainted character like Ted Kennedy. In the wise words of Dennis Miller, “If Ted Kennedy is such a gentleman, why does it take him nine hours to open a car door for a lady?” Now that would have been more of a truth for the President to say.

It’s interesting how closely linked the EPA is to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Do you want information on what constitutes a wetland, perhaps because you may just have one on your own property? Why the ACE has a Regional Supplement “which provides technical guidance and procedures for identifying and delineating wetlands that may be subject to regulatory jurisdiction under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, or Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act.” That’s especially interesting seeing this coming April, just in time for spring flooding, the EPA will come out with updated rules that will define which specific waterways the agency can regulate, cleaning up the details, if you will, of a Supreme Court ruling that was left, perhaps intentionally, vague. While it might be a touch paranoid to expect to hear the rumblings of an ACE convoy coming up your driveway in order to disembark, identify and delineate a possible wetland lurking somewhere on the land that you bought and paid for, the rule changes do mean that the EPA, and it’s partner the ACE, will have the regulatory power to define, and enforce, how your land, or at least the wetter part of it, is to be managed. And that will mean resources to do all that delineating and accompanying paperwork, and a part of your taxes going to fund those resources and all that additional paperwork.

Rep Lamar Smith, R-Texas, raised the warnings last summer and seems to be leading the charge against the proposed rule changes and the additional paperwork and cost they would almost certainly impose on private property owners as well as businesses. A series of EPA maps – whether they are detailed enough is debated by EPA spokespeople – gave the game away according to Smith, who fears that property rights will become even more conditional and subject to further EPA regulations. Will the Government’s considerable surveillance systems be used to map out the nation’s waterways, including small streams and temporary wetlands? Spy satellite data bases being cross referenced to nail down whether your land should be ground surveyed by Army Corps Engineers? It seems exaggerated, but hardly impossible. And if the EPA rule changes do lead to a rush to further survey and classify private property across the USA, you can be sure that a rush of legal challenges will also follow, perhaps ending up again on the doorstep of the Supreme Court. Whatever challenges to the EPA’s authority that SCOTUS then takes up will be, yes, a watershed decision. That’s because any EPA rule changes that broadly define streams and wetlands will be a further step towards including private land in the public commons. Clean water matters a lot, but a power grab by bureaucrats is an expensive, aggressive, and inefficient way of achieving, and especially enforcing, measurable progress on clean water. Let’s hope, against hope perhaps, that the EPA rule changes coming this April are reasonable and flexible.

Mike Rowe is Awesome.


Filed Under Humor, Latest News on Nov 28 

Mike Rowe explains to a Liberal how Christians, and anyone else for that matter, can vote Republican. His answer is perfect.


Happy Obamaween, Kids!


Filed Under Humor on Oct 30 

A little Halloween political humor. Laughing on the outside and crying on the inside.

Photo credit: Someecards

If a 300 pound Black Bear is stalking you, don’t run. Walk slowly and avoid eye contact. Do not run. That’s the advice New Jersey state officials have for hikers after Darsh Pratel lost his life, having apparently been mauled to death by precisely such a bear in the Apshawa Preserve in West Milford, New Jersey. Pratel’s four friends ran away just like he did when they noticed the bear stalking them, but were a little luckier; they weren’t hunted down by a large predator capable of speeds of up to 35 miles an hour over short distances. The 22 year old Rutgers student is the first victim of a bear attack in the state for over 150 years and that must offer no consolation to his distraught family. The bear was shot to death by officials after they found it circling Pratel’s body and after it did not respond to attempts to have it leave the area. We wll have an autopsy and we will also have wildlife experts explaining to everyone how rare an encounter this is and how wonderful it is to have bears roaming the woods of New Jersey as in the days of yore. New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection, however, allow a legal bear hunt to cull the numbers of black bears in the state and lessen the probabilities of human encounters, especially tragic ones like this one.

The question becomes then, what are the limits of biodiversity that a post-industrial society is capable of supporting? The answer depends on who you ask: deep environmentalists would have almost all humans eliminated from North America as well as those invasive domestic breeds like cattle. Urban environmentalists think the increasing number of city-dwelling coyotes in North America is a good thing, and us humans will have to make sure that packs of urban coyotes don’t drag our pets or children into the bushes to be devoured. Ranchers in places like Montana would like to have every last wolf and coyote converted into pelts to be proudly displayed beside their fireplaces. In other words there is a choice to be made about how we coexist with wildlife. While the young Rutgers student’s horrifying fate is likely an anomaly, statistically speaking, bear culls, especially black bear culls, need to be part of any wildlife area’s policy tools. And the Disneyfication of dangerous predators in various media, which will surely continue, must be countered with sober and pragmatic education that lets hikers and others know just what kind of an animal they are dealing with.

Happy Obamaween!


Filed Under Humor on Oct 31 

A Halloween chuckle …



Heckling may not be the most effective way to express an opposing opinion, but at least there’s a glimpse of hope that not everyone buys into the valueless words coming out of the President’s mouth.

Obama faced a heckler again this week with an uncanny response. “This is part of the lively debate we talked about,” was the President’s remark. He hasn’t fooled me, but the President has zero success for positive outcomes from debate. The reason being, he simply doesn’t absorb, listen, consider, or acknowledge any thought, opinion, or idea different than his own. This is the main ingredient in the recipe for the disaster this country has endured for nearly 5 years.

Check out the video here.

Chances are that if you are living in the United States and have some connection to popular culture, even in the most distant of ways, that you have heard of the hit television program Duck Dynasty. The wildly entertaining foray into a Southern family’s life is more than just funny and quirky. It is a glimpse into morals and values that at sometimes I fear have been long forgotten.

Duck Dynasty tells the tale of the Robertson Clan who, starting from an idea for a duck call, have developed a multimillion dollar company. Yet, along the way to their place in the popular culture, the sense of family and God was never lost. They continue to promote on their show family values, Christian beliefs, and respect for (as they would call it) ‘kin’.

Social media erupts on Wednesdays when the show airs in discussions of what Uncle Si said or what Willy is wearing. There is cross-cultural and socioeconomic sharing of laughter over this show. Politically incorrect at times…I mean who openly discusses God in the public forum without fear of backlash or heads out hunting and fishing without worrying what the anti-gun contingencies or PETA might say…it hearkens back to a time when all was not right but it was well and there were solid foundations that could not be shaken.

There is hope in what the Robertson Clan has put on the show. They do not profess to be Democrat or Republican in their beliefs. They do not promote a sex-driven lifestyle or hard partying. No, not the Robertsons. Instead what the show demonstrates is a sense that America, I believe, is yearning for the Andy Griffith mentality (as Phil Robertson himself said in an interview with Fox 411) and that call back to a time when God and family were number one and money was secondary. These men are millionaires, have stunning wives, and children that could have stepped from the pages of a GAP advertisement. But, that is just upon first glance. What these men really have is a sense of humility and charity, wives that are equally as beautiful as they are smart and supporters of their husbands, and children who are well-rounded and loved (whether through biological connections or adoptive roots). There is something beautiful that transcends the Duck Dynasty movement and I, for one, see a glimmer of hope from yesteryear that may just not be gone forever.

The University of Virginia saw a practical joke turn into relative hysteria recently when technology turned a harmless discussion into campus wide panic. The subject of the jest was alcohol, which just should not be joked about on a college campus (or potentially on Capitol Hill… but I digress). Specifically, one student mentioned to her friend that she was at the campus police station because there was a random raid on campus searching dorms for the illusive underage drinker and their stash of alcoholic potables.  What started out as a private joke was then shared with a few others, and then a few others, and in just moments the fear and panic of a potential raid saw alcohol being dumped throughout the campus (who knew so many college students drank?)

This hysteria could be seen as a joke gone too far and hilariously so. But, as I often do, I think about this reaction in a larger context. I cannot help but think that in moments of crisis there is a sheer need to act and react without true thought. Hysteria, as is human, turns to a need for self-preservation but often in the moments following a crisis the actions are clouded by misjudgment. And now, for the political connection (shocking I know):

Think about the reaction to gun violence in this country. When a tragic incident like Sandy Hook or the Aurora Colorado shooting, to name a few, arises, the nation panics. Get rid of the alcohol now and that will solve the problem! Or, more apt in this, get rid of the weapons! That will clear the problem! Then, upon reflection, (as I’m sure a few pouting Freshmen had when they realized their stash of alcohol they had worked so hard to smuggle was gone), the hysteria seems almost comical in its reactionary disproportion. A bit of thought, a little research, and a look at the RA station would have seen that no raids were taking place. But, in the same way that so many students cleared their haul to make sure that nothing occurred, the citizens of this country may be giving up rights to arms that they can never get back.

What the UVA practical joke teaches is more than just a funny way to get a reaction on a college campus. It is a microcosm of sorts for the national reaction to incidents of tragedy, fear, or crisis. In a moment of weakness we give things up, quickly and without true thought for the consequences. The result, like the alcohol in the dumpster, are powers and rights that may never be able to be regained.

Stop the presses! Another celebrity has joined the gun control debate and has put his two cents into the argument. Jim Carrey, in a song parody for, has shown that he believes that gun owners are simply trying to maim children and kill innocence. Another celebrity sharing their opinion on gun control? A Canadian no less? What are we to do?

Quite frankly it is becoming ever increasingly frustrating that Hollywood celebrities (though Jim Carrey is not exactly topping the charts in anything these days except his own self-esteem chart) feel the need to caricaturize Middle Americans and gun owners as reckless buffoons who do nothing more than shoot guns in the air for pleasure. Mr. Carrey, in his oh-so-eloquent way, uses this parody to slash at the heartland and safe, law abiding gun owners everywhere as a way to promote a liberal agenda that is thinly veiled behind the sheath of pageantry. He has no problem making fun of country music no less and that is what may be the worst part!

I would ask Mr. Carrey, then, if gun carrying and owning by those who have the utmost respect for firearms is so wrong, why have you promoted gun usage in your movies? If this issue is to be taken seriously why have you chosen to use it as a form of art in movies like The Mask and other momentarily aggressive, Grade C films?  Why does he choose to have armed bodyguards protecting himself rather than allowing us to protect our families safely? And why does he keep running from valid questions?

Placing his vile rhetoric out onto his Twitter feed, Mr. Carrey received numerous responses. Of course, many were the Occupier-type, young and self-absorbed liberal spawn, that have ignorantly helped lead to such great decisions as the current Commander in Chief and Occupy Wall Street movements (ignore the potential corporate backing). But there was also a great deal of witty and factual debate as well, challenging Mr. Carrey. Look no further than Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) who lambasted not with vile rhetoric but with fact…facts Mr. Carrey glossed over with words that meant nothing.

It is time that Hollywood stop preaching tolerance and begin showing it… It is time that they understood that the lemmings of the world that they surround themselves with do not exist in all pockets of this great country. Do not assume Mr. Carrey that if you stand up and say quack that we will all follow you because you are some sort of celebrity. Some of us have been taught long ago, and rightfully so, clinging to God, guns, and religion is okay and something to be celebrated no matter what I half-hearted and sad celebrity parody says. How about that, eh?

SNL tackles fiscal cliff


Filed Under Humor on Dec 9 

Wright and Kaiser - the early years

Political Derby is in that birthday kind of way! Please join us in celebrating the birthday’s of two of our esteemed editors Jason Wright and David Kaiser. Kaiser punched the clock on Sunday and Wright enters the spotlight today! For all you’ll do, Happy Birthday!

A professional athlete, no matter the sport, enjoys a certain time of year called the off-season. Off-seasons allow athletes to clear their minds and heal their bodies. As an added benefit, off-seasons prevent fans from becoming bored with the sport. Professional offense-takers should follow that example. Maybe their minds wouldn’t be so cloudy and the rest of us wouldn’t grow so sick of them.

Feminists head the herd when it comes to taking offense. They can find affront at the drop of a hat. Feminists have taken umbrage at everything from Victoria’s Secret to My Little Pony. Anything that fails to promote feminism’s “strong” woman — the bra-burning, gruff, nagging, sea hag — renders women doting airheads suitable for serving the patriarchal society.
Read more

Mitts for Mitt


Filed Under Humor on Jan 27 

HT to Tom Cohan for passing along Mitts for Mitt. Any suggestions for other Mitts the site might be missing?

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Official Referee of the Republican Party
Indecision 2012 - Extremely Loud & Incredibly Wealthy (Like me)
. . .

Well, at least Ron Paul is not peddling in this mess. Maybe that helped drive his votes in New Hampshire above his poll numbers. Speaking of Paul, how about this? Andrew Napolitano suggested a Mitt Romney/Rand Paul ticket today.

Hat tip: Commenter T Baker

Just for fun


Filed Under Humor on Dec 29 

(Apologies for the crass and quick reference to “Richard.”

No need to watch out.

You might as well cry.

Go on and pout, I’m telling you why.

Santa Claus ain’t coming to town.

There won’t be any reindeer, or sleigh for you to see.

We’ve banned them all so we can prove our great sensitivity.

It’s no joke! The North Pole’s favorite son was banned from his annual appearance at the Hollings Cancer Center in South Carolina. Said spokeswoman Vicki Agnew: “Because of our state affiliation, we decided not to have a Santa presence this year.” The Center, Agnew continued, wanted to be “more secular and respectful to all beliefs. People who are Muslim or Jewish or have no religious beliefs come here for treatment.” Read more