Money Doesn’t Corrupt

Watching bits and pieces of Hannity and Colmes again tonight (it was up against a Simpsons rerun that I’ve seen many times…), and they had Lanny Davis on. He was, of all things, defending the Bush Administration (at least insofar as he thought there was no evidence that they’d done anything wrong) and was urging them to come clean on the “energy task force.”

My take is that he knows he was running interference for a criminal scoundrel in the past, he has at least the vestiges of a conscience, and that he hopes, by appearing to be “consistent” that he will somehow redeem himself.

Of course, he’s not being consistent, because in the case of the Clinton Administration, almost without failure, there was almost always a “quo” to match every “quid.” The only excuse that the Clintonistas could put forth was that yes, there was a quid, and yes, there was a quo, but we must understand that Bill Clinton was such a noble and ethical creature, that it was madness to connect the dots and think that there was therefore a “quid pro quo.”

(Quick translation for those who are Latin challenged: “quid” means “this,” “quo” means “that,” and “pro” means “for”…)

The uphill struggle that the Democrats face in making this into a Republican scandal is that while there are “quids” to both parties, there are no recent “quo”s, and to the degree that they exist at all, they only came from Democrats…

Lanny also said something toward the end that simply reinforced Glenn Reynold’s recent Fox News editorial. Lanny said, “We must pass campaign reform to end the corruption caused by all this money.”

No, Lanny, it’s not the money that causes all the corruption. Lord Acton had it right when he said it, and it remains right today.

Power corrupts.

Money Doesn’t Corrupt

Watching bits and pieces of Hannity and Colmes again tonight (it was up against a Simpsons rerun that I’ve seen many times…), and they had Lanny Davis on. He was, of all things, defending the Bush Administration (at least insofar as he thought there was no evidence that they’d done anything wrong) and was urging them to come clean on the “energy task force.”

My take is that he knows he was running interference for a criminal scoundrel in the past, he has at least the vestiges of a conscience, and that he hopes, by appearing to be “consistent” that he will somehow redeem himself.

Of course, he’s not being consistent, because in the case of the Clinton Administration, almost without failure, there was almost always a “quo” to match every “quid.” The only excuse that the Clintonistas could put forth was that yes, there was a quid, and yes, there was a quo, but we must understand that Bill Clinton was such a noble and ethical creature, that it was madness to connect the dots and think that there was therefore a “quid pro quo.”

(Quick translation for those who are Latin challenged: “quid” means “this,” “quo” means “that,” and “pro” means “for”…)

The uphill struggle that the Democrats face in making this into a Republican scandal is that while there are “quids” to both parties, there are no recent “quo”s, and to the degree that they exist at all, they only came from Democrats…

Lanny also said something toward the end that simply reinforced Glenn Reynold’s recent Fox News editorial. Lanny said, “We must pass campaign reform to end the corruption caused by all this money.”

No, Lanny, it’s not the money that causes all the corruption. Lord Acton had it right when he said it, and it remains right today.

Power corrupts.

My Brain Hurts

I’ve been thinking, and thinking, and thinking, until smoke is coming out of my ears, and I can’t for the life of me come up with any thought process that will persuade me that having had “campaign finance reform” in place would have prevented anything that happened in the Enron scandal.

Yet there seems to be a growing consensus in the punditocracy that the Enron debacle is going to result somehow in the passage of campaign finance legislation a la McCain-Feingold or Shays-Meehan.

Can someone, anyone, explain this to me?

With Friends Like These, Part Deux

Brian puts up a laughable response to our commentary on his overhyping of the Ken Lay/GWB connection.

Rand Simberg, Dawson and Glenn Reynolds appear to have been reading the “Clinton Death List” a little too often,

This is called a “non sequitur,” as only two of the names on the list are dead, as far as I know. As a matter of fact, I don’t think that I’ve ever read the “Clinton Death List.”

as they claim that the former president’s list of nefarious friends and associates was much worse than the current Bush association with Lay. Weirdo conspircay theory aside, the list presented by Rand doesn’t amount to a hill ‘o beans compared to the devastation that the multi-billion dollar, Ken Lay directed scam has wrought. Devastation to employees, shareholders, their families, local economies, and ultimately to the entire tax paying public.

The taxpaying public? How does this affect the “entire tax paying public”?

Of course, I also quit before I even started to get to all the Chinese money, and James Riady, and Bernie Schwarz, which resulted in quite a bit of illicit technology acquisition that may in fact have more devastating effects down the road than a company going bankrupt.

Look at Rand’s list. Other than Web Hubbell and the McDougals, do you recognize anyone?

So it’s OK to hang with con-men, gangsters and hoodlums, as long as they’re not household names (primarily because a Clinton-worshiping media made sure that they remained obscure)?

And as Charles Dodgson points out, Bush has started his own list of lesser riff raff with his recess appointment of Otto Reich.

Not sure how Reich qualifies for the rogues gallery, so this seems to be another non sequitur.

But Brian is in such a pathetically untenable position here, that out of kindness, I will give him Neil Bush.

Why?…Why?…Why?…

Perhaps this is so obvious that someone else has already mentioned it, but it seems to me, upon further reflection, that there is an answer to Megan’s question about why Enron (or any B2B) was advertising to a market that was in a position neither to purchase, or influence the purchase of, its products.

Was it trying to boost market? Obviously not. Was it trying to boost profits? How would that be accomplished with expensive and opaque ads? Was it trying to hype stock price?

Bingo.

“I Like To Watch”

According to Space.com, NASA is looking for public input on what it should do next. This story to me epitomizes much that is wrong with space policy and space reporting. The report is written by a “Senior Science Writer.” The survey is being sponsored by the National Academy of Sciences. The request for them to do so came in a letter from a NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science. The article, and all people involved, assume that the sole purpose of NASA is to do solar system exploration–the only issue is just which bit of the solar system to explore.

Sorry, folks, but we don’t spend fifteen gigabucks a year on NASA so that it can do science. NASA was actually formed in 1958 in response to a perceived national security threat–a grapefruit-sized Soviet object beeping over our heads. That threat having been vanquished, it continues to exist partly out of inertia, partly out of pork, and partly as a foreign policy tool. Science is just the fig leaf for all those other things.

While I’m all in favor of public input as to what we want to accomplish in space, the question shouldn’t be “what should NASA do?” The real question to the American people is “What do you want to do in space?” After they answer that question, we can then formulate some kind of national policy to respond to it (part of which might even be an overhaul, or even abolition, of NASA in its current form).

Every public opinion poll done on the matter indicates that a majority of the people would like to visit. But they’ve been intellectually bullied into believing that space is not for them, it’s only for “scientists,” and those with the “right stuff.” Let’s get voyeurism out of space, and back into the bedroom where it belongs.

“I Like To Watch”

According to Space.com, NASA is looking for public input on what it should do next. This story to me epitomizes much that is wrong with space policy and space reporting. The report is written by a “Senior Science Writer.” The survey is being sponsored by the National Academy of Sciences. The request for them to do so came in a letter from a NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science. The article, and all people involved, assume that the sole purpose of NASA is to do solar system exploration–the only issue is just which bit of the solar system to explore.

Sorry, folks, but we don’t spend fifteen gigabucks a year on NASA so that it can do science. NASA was actually formed in 1958 in response to a perceived national security threat–a grapefruit-sized Soviet object beeping over our heads. That threat having been vanquished, it continues to exist partly out of inertia, partly out of pork, and partly as a foreign policy tool. Science is just the fig leaf for all those other things.

While I’m all in favor of public input as to what we want to accomplish in space, the question shouldn’t be “what should NASA do?” The real question to the American people is “What do you want to do in space?” After they answer that question, we can then formulate some kind of national policy to respond to it (part of which might even be an overhaul, or even abolition, of NASA in its current form).

Every public opinion poll done on the matter indicates that a majority of the people would like to visit. But they’ve been intellectually bullied into believing that space is not for them, it’s only for “scientists,” and those with the “right stuff.” Let’s get voyeurism out of space, and back into the bedroom where it belongs.

“I Like To Watch”

According to Space.com, NASA is looking for public input on what it should do next. This story to me epitomizes much that is wrong with space policy and space reporting. The report is written by a “Senior Science Writer.” The survey is being sponsored by the National Academy of Sciences. The request for them to do so came in a letter from a NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science. The article, and all people involved, assume that the sole purpose of NASA is to do solar system exploration–the only issue is just which bit of the solar system to explore.

Sorry, folks, but we don’t spend fifteen gigabucks a year on NASA so that it can do science. NASA was actually formed in 1958 in response to a perceived national security threat–a grapefruit-sized Soviet object beeping over our heads. That threat having been vanquished, it continues to exist partly out of inertia, partly out of pork, and partly as a foreign policy tool. Science is just the fig leaf for all those other things.

While I’m all in favor of public input as to what we want to accomplish in space, the question shouldn’t be “what should NASA do?” The real question to the American people is “What do you want to do in space?” After they answer that question, we can then formulate some kind of national policy to respond to it (part of which might even be an overhaul, or even abolition, of NASA in its current form).

Every public opinion poll done on the matter indicates that a majority of the people would like to visit. But they’ve been intellectually bullied into believing that space is not for them, it’s only for “scientists,” and those with the “right stuff.” Let’s get voyeurism out of space, and back into the bedroom where it belongs.

Biting Commentary about Infinity…and Beyond!

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