First up, a commentary from the always-worth-reading Dr. Charles Krauthammer, on a topic I commented on recently: Why Obama Is Right About India. Excerpt:
There has been much grousing about the expense of President Obama’s India trip. This is silly and vindictive. The one thing this country owes its leader is to spare no expense in protecting him. Especially when his first stop is Bombay, scene of one of the most savage and sustained terror attacks in modern times.
It is protested that Britain’s prime minister took a British Airways flight when he traveled to Washington in July. So what? To be blunt about it: A once-imperial middle power flies commercial; America flies colossal. Why do you think we built that 747 flying palace emblazoned with the presidential insignia — if not to land to awestruck crowds wherever it goes?
There was grumbling about the White House taking over every room at Bombay’s five-star Taj Mahal Palace
hotel. What is the Secret Service to do? Allow suites to be let to, say, groups of Pakistani madrassa instructors?
On the national scene: The Top Ten Most Gerrymandered Districts In The Country. While gerrymandering is not a new practice, dating as it does to the very early 1800s, it has grown particularly egregious in recent years. This practice has led to far too many ‘safe’ seats that will remain in Republican or Democrat hands no matter what the mood of the electorate in general. If we can’t have term limits, then pols should serve every day of their terms in fear of being tossed out by the voters.
The Dollar: Every Man For Himself. Excerpt:
We believe a key impediment to the U.S. economy is that policy makers are fighting market forces. Consumers would like to de-leverage further; however, de-leveraging may imply lower home prices, more foreclosures and bankruptcies; while such dynamics are sorely needed for a more sustainable recovery, promoting what may be the healthiest economically may be political suicide. Consumers that downsize may actually live in a house they can afford; such consumers will once again have disposable income, be able to save and possibly be able to afford a bigger home down the road. If, in contrast, a consumer is subsidized to stay in a home he or she cannot afford, that consumer will continue to be a slave to their mortgage, unable to have money to pay for unexpected repairs, such as a new roof; or have disposable income to spur growth in the economy. Indeed, some argue that the economic boom that followed the Great Depression was a result of weak businesses failing.
Finally, let’s have something from the “Oh, cool!” category; Rat sent this our way this morning: 10 Weapons Of The Future That Are Being Developed Right Now. I want the grenade launcher.
In that vein, I don’t understand why so many Star Wars fans go on about lightsabers. I can’t see the value in wasting that kind of technology on a melee weapon. I prefer to destroy bad guys as far away from me as possible; when I was a young Army type in an Infantry battalion, I always thought the best weapon available was the ubiquitous PRC-77 backpack radio and a battery of 155mm howitzers a few ridgelines away.