1. If you have a blog, check out Built With to see how your blog rates. I got three out of five stars. I'll take that, since I have no idea what it all means or how I even got that many stars. I just figured out what "widget" means -- it's a symbol or banner you put on your blog that people can click on, like Site Meter or Blog Rush. If it's fancier than a regular link, it must be a widget.
2. Currently, I am a crunchy crustacean in the blog ecosystem. Since I was a worm, I'll take the promotion to lobster.
UPDATE: Breaking news. At last check, I have achieved the level of Lowly Insect. Repeat, I am now a Lowly Insect.
I... I don't know what to say. Excuse me, I seem to have something in my eye. *sob* I want to thank all the microbes and worms I met along the way. I hope I treated you guys well, because I know I'll be seeing you again on my way down. I love you, man.
3. The Rise of the New Criminal, though clumsily written, makes the interesting observation that a new type of criminal is on the rise. The standard model of career criminal is one who begins as a juvenile delinquent and continues a life of crime into adulthood. The new criminal is someone who has been honest and productive all his life but gets laid off and as he is living above his means and is in debt, he panics and commits a burglary. The author blames this new criminal on a few economic trends, such as the fact that people change jobs more often than our parents did.
I believe the real underlying cause of the new criminal is the rise of altruism. Altruism tells us that the strong must sacrifice for the weak. So when some people are down and out, they figure those who are better off owe them something. They think the world owes them a living. Some weak men use this to rationalize theft.
4. Angry Bear is posting charts of various economic data comparing US Presidents. Clinton consistently has the best economic performance and GW Bush has the worst. It should be noted that Clinton was a weak president and after the 1994 election that brought Republicans to power in Congress, there was little he could do but go along with the Republicans. Clinton's economic performance should be attributed to the Republican Congress. Bush, in his titanic ignorance and his "compassionate conservatism," threw away the economic gains of the the '90s in order to buy votes and bring "democracy" to Iraq.
This is one reason I would not mind a Hillary Clinton Presidency; it would stiffen the Republicans' spines and lead them to at least scale back the growth of government.
5. Andrew Breitbart is demolishing David Ehrenstein in this discussion about Hollywood being a liberal town. Please, it's not even a question. I believe there are eight movies about Iraq coming out, all from the leftist point of view; I heard that one even features our military men as rapists.
One interesting paragraph from this discussion:
My father-in-law, Orson Bean, an author, comedian and actor, was once blacklisted as a Communist back in the '50s. Ed Sullivan called him to say he could no longer book him on the show. Fifty years later, and after a sharp ideological metamorphosis, Orson says it's harder now to be an open conservative on a Hollywood set than it was back then to be a Communist.
6. Hillary Clinton has floated the wonderful, oh-so-compassionate idea of giving every American baby $5,000 when it is born. (Let's buy votes by getting everyone on the government gravy train at birth!) The money would be put into a savings account (and how long before those "accounts" became empty IOU's from the government like social security "accounts"?), so that every American would have around $19,000 of stolen money by the age of 20. And how does the young American get this loot? "[H]e or she commits to at least one year of national or military service." So it's a backdoor way of making everyone serve the state. Hillary Clinton, fascist nightmare.