The Final Boss?

Steven Den Beste, RIP

I was a fan. He was a big influence on me post-911. RIP.


Here is an Archive:

Data Dump: MPS Spending per Student


$15k per student

Data Dump:

MPS Budget 2015-2016

Click to access 2015-16AmendedAdoptedBudgetBookrev2.19.16.pdf

Total Expenses: $1,169.4 (millions)

Total Students: 75,551
1,169.4 (millions) / 75,551 = 15478

So (roughly), MPS spends $15k per student

“New Economic Patriotism”

Am I only person uneasy by President Obama’s phraseology: “New Economic Patriotism”?


ImageWhat does this photo remind you of?


RIP: John Reilly

I got the sad news from Jayson via Email:


JOHN J. REILLY JERSEY CITY John J. Reilly of Jersey City, 58, passed away on May 30, 2012. Beloved son of Jean Reilly (nee Harkins) and the late John Reilly, dear brother of Donna Reilly (Dennis Goonan), Mary Spence (Jack Spence), Nancy Reilly Zollo (Louis Zollo) and Nora Reilly, and uncle to David, Jennifer, Elizabeth, Kathryn and Michael, he was also cherished by many compassionate friends, especially those with whom he worshiped at Holy Rosary Church. After graduating from St. Peter’s College and earning his law degree from Georgetown University, he embarked upon a career as a writer, editor and attorney. His keen intellect and wry sense of humor resulted in many publications and a world-wide network of correspondents. His intellectual preoccupations ranged from theology and in particular eschatology to politics, alternative history, and the philosophy of science and literature. He published four books including Apocalypse and Future, Notes on the Cultural History of the 21st Century. John regularly appeared in First Things, Kirkus Review, and had been an editor at Culture Wars before he withdrew in protest to a drift toward anti-Semitism which he publically denounced. John also maintained a blog, The Long View, where John serenely surveyed the world and opined that, indeed, everything is going to be ok. John’s intellectual interests also expressed themselves in various societies in which he was active including The Inter-national Society for the Comparative Study of Civilizations, the Center for Millennial Studies, the Simplified Spelling Society, and American Literacy Counsel. A man of breathtakingly ecumenical feeling, he was without compromise a true and devout Catholic. It must have been his faith and his character formed by it and by his loving family that made him without a doubt the most optimistic expert on apocalyptic movements and dystopias. John explained himself thusly: After long thought, I realized that the most important thing in life is to be helpful. So, I have taken to explaining things, carefully and empathetically, and often at very great length ‘Spengler with a Smile’ is how I usually characterize the organizing principle. The loss of John’s self effacing cheerful genius has left the world a darker place and for those who were privileged to share his company, a son, brother and friend whose absence will always be felt. A wake will be held on Friday, June 1, from 4 – 8PM at McLaughlin’s Funeral Home, Jersey City. A requiem mass will be held at 10AM on Saturday, June 2, at Holy Rosary Church followed by interment at Holy Cross Cemetery in North Arlington. In lieu of flowers, John would have appreciated donations to Holy Rosary Church. .McLaughlin Funeral Home 625 Pavonia Avenue Jersey City, NJ 07306 (201) 798-8700 [SOURCE]


I knew him through his blog and a few comments we exchanged. He will be missed.

Oh-Oh: “ is no longer available. The authors have deleted this blog.”




One of my photos was used…

“Self improvement never has been and is not now a message solely for elites”

Walter Russel Meade gets it:


The advice to make the most of your talents applies to everyone.  If anything, people who are constantly being told in school and elsewhere that they are ‘too dumb’ are MORE likely to miss their hidden talents and abilities than those who are constantly being told how special they are.  Not everybody is going to win a Nobel Prize, or quit their day job to write great novels, but almost all of us are capable of more success and happiness than we now enjoy.


Figuring out your real strengths and passions and having the courage to base career decisions on them does not just make sense for the budding Einsteins and investment bankers among us.  It is about living your best life and honoring your Creator by placing the sum of your talents, be they great or small, in the common service as best you can.

Self improvement never has been and is not now a message solely for elites.  The belief that ‘ordinary’ people can live better lives by dint of cultivating their talents and that the capacity for growth and self-direction of the ‘average’ American deserves respect is not, in my book, a mark of elitism.

Anybody out there use offshore places for eyeglass frames/lenses?

Who did you use? How did it work out? Thoughts?

One of my Wordle Graphics was used…


One of my Photos was used…


Hail and Farewell: Ralph Buckles has passed away

He was the last living US WW1 Veteran.
Cpl Frank Buckles


Don’t mess with Neil Sedaka

Don’t mess with Neil Sedaka

His Perfect song – “Alone at Last”

The Rosemary Clooney version:

“There are two ways for a government to be pro-business”

The Economist blogger/podcaster of EconTalk gets it:

There are two ways for a government to be ‘pro-business.’ 

The first way is to avoid interfering in capitalist acts among consenting adults – that is, to keep taxes low, regulations few, and subsidies non-existent.  This ‘pro-business’ stance promotes widespread prosperity because in reality it isn’t so much pro-business as it is pro-consumer.  When this way is pursued, businesses are rewarded for pleasing consumers, and only for pleasing consumers.

The second, and very different, way for government to be pro-business is to bestow favors and privileges on politically connected firms.  These favors and privileges, such as tariffs and export subsidies, invariably oblige consumers to pay more – either directly in the form of higher prices, or indirectly in the form of higher taxes – for goods and services.  This way of being pro-business reduces the nation’s prosperity by relieving businesses of the need to satisfy consumers.  When this second way is pursued, businesses are rewarded for pleasing politicians.  Competition for consumers’ dollars is replaced by competition for political favors.

This gives us simple test.

When a politician proposes or enacts a a policy in harmony with the first way, I can support that.

When a politician proposes or enacts a a policy in harmony with the second way, that policy and it supporters  must be ruthlessly exposed, ridiculed, opposed, repealed, undone…you get my point.

This Affirms My Decision to Not Attend Law School

And how!

Favorite Line (among many great ones): “I do not like my Blackberry. I would like to torture it until it begs me to kill it.”

Anybody out there using “Rosetta Stone” for self-directed foreign language learning?

Anybody out there using “Rosetta Stone” for self-directed foreign language learning? How does it work? How did it work for you?

I am thinking of using it to brush up on and expand my Spanish in 2011. It is on sale right now (10/18/2010).

Brett Favre and Karma: See the…

full video here.

RevG…are you out there still?

Is so, please email. Thanks.

“It takes a monkey to catch a monkey”

I needed to be un-pissed.


This did it!



One of my photos was used…

here in “Is It Ever O.K. to Bribe Your Students”.

Here is the original:

Spring Break 2007 – Day 8 – Cozumel Mexico – Dolphin Encounter

“There needs to be a Journal of xGW, with strong editorial oversight…”

Curtis writes:

There needs to be a Journal of xGW, with strong editorial oversight (for quality-control, not necessarily as strong content control) — a kind of monthly, bimonthly, or quarterly Handbook of 5GW. More than a mere scattering of blog posts.

So, how do we go about this?

Could we start with just maybe a quarterly|bi-annual “Carnival-style” event?

Grand Strategy Definition – Notes

Blog Guerrilla Diplomacy:

Grand strategy is a unifying, long-term vision of a country’s global values and interests; an expression of where that country is, and wants to go in the world, and; an analysis of its potential and capacity to achieve the objectives, and to reach the destination set forth.

B. H. Liddell Hart/Wikipedia:

[T]he role of grand strategy – higher strategy – is to co-ordinate and direct all the resources of a nation, or band of nations, towards the attainment of the political object of the war – the goal defined by fundamental policy.

Grand strategy should both calculate and develop the economic resources and man-power of nations in order to sustain the fighting services. Also the moral resources – for to foster the people’s willing spirit is often as important as to possess the more concrete forms of power. Grand strategy, too, should regulate the distribution of power between the several services, and between the services and industry. Moreover, fighting power is but one of the instruments of grand strategy – which should take account of and apply the power of financial pressure, and, not least of ethical pressure, to weaken the opponent’s will. …

Furthermore, while the horizons of strategy is bounded by the war, grand strategy looks beyond the war to the subsequent peace. It should not only combine the various instruments, but so regulate their use as to avoid damage to the future state of peace – for its security and prosperity.

Barnett’s Definition:

As far as a world power like America is concerned, a grand strategy involves first imagining some future world order within which our nation’s standing, prosperity, and security are significantly enhanced, and then plotting and maintaining a course to that desired end while employing—to the fullest extent possible—all elements of our nation’s power toward generating those conditions. Naturally, such grand goals typically take decades to achieve, thus the importance of having a continuous supply of grand thinkers able to maintain strategic focus.

…and his related posts: here, and here.

John Boyd (tunneled through Don Vandergriff):

Boyd’s four elements of grand strategy:

* Improve our morale and that of our allies
* Degrade that of our opponents
* Attract the uncommitted
* Without setting the stage for future (unfavorable) conflict.

John Boyd (tunneled through John Robb):

Grand strategy, according to Boyd, is a quest to isolate your enemy’s (a nation-state or a global terrorist network) thinking processes from connections to the external/reference environment. This process of isolation is essentially the imposition of insanity on a group. To wit: any organism that operates without reference to external stimuli (the real world), falls into a destructive cycle of false internal dialogues. These corrupt internal dialogues eventually cause dissolution and defeat.

The dynamic of Boyd’s grand strategy is to isolate your enemy across three essential vectors (physical, mental, and moral), while at the same time improving your connectivity across those same vectors. Here’s more detail:

* Physical isolation is accomplished by severing communications both to the outside world (ie. allies) and internal audiences (ie. between branches of command and between the command organization and its supporters).

* Mental isolation is done through the introduction of ambiguous information, novel situations, and by operating at a tempo an enemy cannot keep up with. A lack of solid information impedes decision making.

* Moral isolation is achieved when an enemy improves its well being at the expense of others (allies) or violates rules of behavior they profess to uphold (standards of conduct). Moral rules are a very important reference point in times of uncertainty. When these are violated, it is very hard to recover.

Capturing My Thoughts: “Who are We”

From a question by Cannoneer No. 4 made here:

When I say “We”, I mean US Citizens and Future US Citizens aligned with the core beliefs of the USA (e.g. All are created equal; natural right to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness; GOV exist only at the consent of the people, not the other way around) and accepting the governing social contract(e.g. a republic; separation of powers; federalism; US Constitution as the highest law of the land; equality for all before the the law).

There has to be a better way of saying this. What am I missing?

Thoughts/Help would be appreciated!

My “Tweet Cloud” for the Last Week

Tweet Cloud


Time for a new tagline…

…”Lazy Pundit and Armchair Senator”.

How about that?

I might just go back to “The Future Will Be Kludged” or variant “Kludging the Future”