I've been on the road quite a bit of late, which has cut into my ability to blog. My able co-blogger has taken up much of the slack, but as they say in Congress, "Had I been present, this is how I would have voted on the following matters:"
FERGUSON RIOTS: It is no accident that the modern left has taken over a lot of the mental real estate once occupied by the Protestant Right - the sinfulness of man, the need to repent and desire to build a perfect community of the Elect. The problem with acknowledging Original Sin is that one also need a Savior, and when this is done in a secular context, you either get a series of increasingly dictatorial would-be messiahs or a constant state of revolution as the Elect struggle to bring about paradise on earth.
The United States is blessed insofar that our leftish worshippers are half-assed and generally ineffective. They have not yet achieved full control of either the state or society, though they have created a lot of mischief. Like Detroit, Ferguson will stand as yet another monument to their eternal struggle to purge white guilt and pursue social justice. Having done the damage and shattered lives and neighborhoods, they will move on the next project, utterly free of any sense of responsibility. This is who they are and this what they do.
AMNESTY FOR LAWBREAKERS, PUNISHMENT FOR LAW-ABIDING: This isn't the first blog to notice the inherent contradiction in pushing for both a minimum wage and the addition of unlimited numbers of unskilled laborers. Still, it tends to be an argument in the abstract that uses charts and tables. A growing number of people who might have been sympathetic are now going to find out how much fun it is to watch the left's favor shift from one group to another.
Black Americans are just beginning to understand that their monolithic devotion to the Democrats has gotten them nothing but broken families, shattered cities and now - replacement by the New Hot Young Think.
Like the battered first wife, they will not take it well. I suspect some of the Ferguson antics were in part a realization that they were betrayed by someone they thought was one of their own.
HOPE FOR THE AMERICAN MILITARY: The fundamental contradiction at the heart of American military strategy is now in the open.
We cannot continue to downsize our military, discard its weapon systems and cut back on training while maintaining the same commitments at home and abroad. The reduced blanket isn't big enough to cover the entire bed. Obama doesn't much care, but the American people don't like watching their nation being humiliated overseas. Even Democrats find it unpleasant.
The new Republican majority in Congress seems commited to lifting the limits on our military, which is appropriate. I do wish the deficit hawks would either put up or shut up for good. Either reign in entitlement spending - which sucks up the vast majority of the budget, or drop the whole issue entirely. Surrendering naval and aerial supremecy will not balance our finances, but it will make us very vulnerable to overseas aggressors. If they want savings, cut out the IRS travel budget and defund all the mini-armies hidden in the various deparments.
At this point, I'm fully prepared for us to default on our debt. It happens in South American all the time. Germany did it as well. None of them disappeared. Like the gambler who can't leave the roulette table, at some point the only way to change the behavior is to let the full consequences take effect. Americans want low taxes and high spending. For a generation we thought this could go on forever. It can't, so let's see what happens.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL ROUNDUP: Okay, so my Black Swan prediction didn't come to pass. Well, that's why they call it a Black Swan - it was a long shot. Still, Ohio State hasn't looked all the great since their big win in East Lansing.
The current buzz is over how badly they will thump the Skunk Bears in the Horseshoe this Saturday.
A part of me actually wants the Wolverines to win. After all, it would screw up the title picture, perhaps give Brady Hoke another season and at the very least extend his job uncertainty until after the bowl game. I know, the Cult of Bo has been twisting in the wind for more than a year, but I'm still not tired of watching it. Like watching Notre Dame lose, it never gets old.
All that being said, I just don't think the Skunk Bears have it in them to pull off the upset. This is a beaten team, far less capable than the one that took the field last year. The 2013 team had some offensive firepower, putting up big points against Indiana and at times looking like it might amount to something - until the Spartans exposed them.
This team has struggled against even middling opponents, and is now the only Big Ten team besides Indiana to lose to both Maryland and Rutgers. I want the upset to happen, but it won't.
BONUS SKUNK BEAR ABUSE: The Blue-Ade drinkers in Ann Arbor really screwed themselves. Through their singular stupidity, they find themselves without either a permanent athletic director or a viable head coach.
Given the cult-like nature of their football program (and the fact that the previous two athletic directors were forced out by poor football coach hires), it is going to be hard for them to find a good candidate who doesn't get to choose the next coach. After all, the job hinges on it. No one worth having will take a job that has them captive to someone else's decision.
At the same time, Brady Hoke is a dead man walking and everyone knows it. The recruits are bailing out and the transfers are reconsidering. Active players on their roster are probably thinking of going as well. The longer they wait to replace Hoke, the worse the damage will be. Should they decide to keep him for another year, the team will unquestionably stink and the hoped-for revival will be pushed back a year and have to start in an even deeper hole.
Ann Arbor has money, facilities and name recognition, but it also has an unreasonable fan base and dysfunctional culture. There are open positions in Kansas and Florida that are in many ways more attractive. It is hard to see how they turn things around.
SPARTANS STILL WINNING: My time away from the blog gave me a little perspective. Yes, the OSU loss was a crushing disappointment for many reasons, but the season must still be regarded as a success. If someone had told me in 1991 that the bad news was that we wouldn't win the conference title but we would still humiliate the Skunk Bears and go to a great bowl game, I would not have dared to complain.
We cannot afford to get arrogant or feel entitled. Even with the loss, we never had it so good.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING: This year as always I am chiefly thankful for Family, Faith and Freedom. It has not been the easiest year for all three, but I am still grateful for what I have - and for your attention, dear readers.
This is the 10th Thanksgiving for this blog and despite our erratic posting, you keep coming back and even comment from time to time. It is very much appreciated.