Excellent News

The wit and wisdom of Cassandra has returned to the Internet.

Temporarily, at least…I see that she still has her notice that “you have reached a blog that has been disconnected or is no longer in service” up on the masthead. Maybe if we all clap our hands, she will stick around. It worked for Tinkerbell, after all.

A Word From Our Sponsor

Chicagoboyz is now a B&H Photo affiliate. I recommend B&H highly, particularly for expensive photo items. B&H is one of the largest photo and electronics retailers, with prices that are usually as good as anyone’s. I think their service is a notch better than Amazon’s, particularly if you want to return a purchase. As with Amazon, Chicagoboyz profits at no cost to you if you click on a B&H link or banner to shop for photo or electronic goods.

Thanks for your support.



Dear Year 2012,

we wish you a warm welcome! Nevertheless we’ll keep a close eye on you. We hope you won’t mind. Your predecessor had some issues, such as earthquakes, famines, nuclear disasters etc., etc., so we are a bit wary at this point.

But don’t let that put you off! Just relax, be yourself and things should turn out alright. Or else.

Kind regards

Ralf Goergens
p. p. Everybody else

Chicagoboyz on Twitter

I’ve set up a Twitter account for the blog and installed the “Tweet This” WordPress plugin. Now you can click the “tweet this post” thing below a post and the post will be tweeted.

You can read our Twitter feed here, though I’m not sure why anyone who is already reading the blog would want to.

I will probably set up automatic tweeting for all Chicagoboyz posts. Twitter’s TOS says that you can’t automatically tweet a blog post without the author’s consent, so I want to be cautious about using this feature until I can contact all of the relevant people. It appears as well that any reader can tweet any CB blog post, so the consent issue may exist even without automatic tweeting. (Our Twitter plugin, like most WordPress plugins, is not designed with group blogs in mind.) But I’m sure we will get these issues straightened out.

America 3.0 [bumped]

James C. Bennett, author of The Anglosphere Challenge (Rowman & Littlefield, 2004), and Michael J. Lotus (who blogs at Chicagoboyz.net as “Lexington Green”), are proud to announce the signing of a contract with Encounter Books of New York to publish their forthcoming book America 3.0.

America 3.0 gives readers the real historical foundations of our liberty, free enterprise, and family life.  Based on a new understanding of our past, and on little known modern scholarship, America 3.0 offers long-term strategies to restore and strengthen American liberty, prosperity and security in the years ahead.

America 3.0 shows that our country was founded as a decentralized federation of communities, dominated by landowner-farmers, and based on a unique type of Anglo-American nuclear family.  This was America 1.0, as the Founders established it.  The Industrial Revolution brought progress, opportunity and undreamed-of mobility.  But, it also pushed the majority of American families into a new, urban, industrial life along with millions of unassimilated immigrants. After the Civil War, new problems of public health, crime, public order, and labor unrest, on top of the issues of Reconstruction, taxed the old Constitution.  Americans looked for new solutions to new problems, giving rise to Progressivism, the ancestor of modern liberalism.

America 3.0 shows that liberal-progressive solutions to the challenges of America 2.0 relieved some problems, and kicked others down the road.  But they also led to an overly powerful state and to an overly intrusive bureaucracy.  This was the beginning of America 2.0, the America we grew up with, which dominated the Twentieth Century.

America 3.0 argues that the liberal-progressive or “Blue State” social model has reached its natural limits.  Even as it continues to try to expand, it is now dying out before our eyes.   We are  now living in the closing years of the 20th Century “legacy state.”  Even so, it has taken the shock of the current Great Recession to make people see the need for change.  As a result, more and more Americans are calling for a return to our founding principles.  Freedom and individualism are on the rise after a century-long detour.

America 3.0 shows that our current problems can be and must be transcended with a transition to a new America 3.0, based on modern technology, decentralized communities, and self-reliant families, and a reassertion of fiscal responsibility, Constitutionally limited government and free market economics.   Ironically the future America 3.0 will in many ways be closer to the original vision of the Founders than the fading America 2.0.

America 3.0 gives readers an accurate, and hopeful, assessment of our current crisis.  It also spotlights the powerful forces arrayed in opposition to the needed reform.  These groups include ideological leftists in media and the academy, politically connected businesses, and the public employees unions.  However, as powerful as these groups are, they have become vulnerable as the external conditions change.  A correct understanding of our history and culture, which America 3.0 provides, shows their opposition will be futile.  The new, pro-freedom, mass political movement, which is aligned with the true needs and desires of Americans, is going to succeed.

America 3.0 provides readers a program of specific “maximalist” proposals to reform our government and liberate our economy.  America 3.0 shows readers that these reforms are consistent with our fundamental culture, and with our Constitution, and will make Americans freer and more prosperous in the years ahead.

America 3.0 provides a “software upgrade” for the Tea Party and for all activists on the Conservative and Libertarian Right.  It provides readers with historical evidence and intellectual coherence, to channel the energy and enthusiasm of the rising mass political movement to renew America.

America 3.0 shows that our capacity for regeneration is greater than most people realize.  Predictions of our doom are deeply mistaken.  We are now living just before the dawn of America’s greatest days.  Within a generation, positive changes beyond what we can currently imagine will have taken place.  That is the America 3.0 we are going to build together.

(Cross-posted from the America 3.0 blog.)

Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Josiah Bunting III speaking on “American Leadership,” December 9, 2011

The Mens Leadership Forum of Chicago will present Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Josiah Bunting III (Also here.) on December 9, 2011. He will be speaking on the topic of American Leadership, which in this context will mean leadership as personally exemplified by individual Americans over our history. He will address the question: how did certain earlier American generations produced cohorts of enormously capable leaders at the national level, and why we do not. One of the generations he will talk about is the generation that led the so-called Greatest Generation: Truman, FDR, Mac Arthur, Marshall, and Eisenhower. The meeting commences at 7:30 a.m., at the University Club of Chicago, 76 E. Monroe. The breakfast is always good there. Register here. I have read his book An Education for Our Time, which was interesting. (See this review of the book). I hope many of you will attend.

Chicago Tea Party Patriots Meeting, Wednesday, November 2, 2011

This next meeting should be good:

The next monthly meeting of the Chicago Tea Party will be held on Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 at Blackie’s Chicago, 755 S. Clark. Our featured speaker will be Dan Proft, WLS-AM 890 host, Senior Fellow at the Illinois Policy Institute and Illinois Chapter President of Operation Homefront, a non-profit that provides emergency assistance to Illinois military families. This will be our first meeting after TeaCon 2011, the tea party convention that engaged, educated and energized tea party leaders from across the Midwest.

Register here.

I plan to be there.

(Here is Dan Proft’s speech to the Tea Party gathering on Daley Plaza, April 19, 2011. I was there. It was cold. Proft was good, and also funny.)

“The Closing of the Muslim Mind and the Prospects for the Arab Spring”

Dear ChicagoBoyz readers: Please note this most excellent presentation, to be presented by the Mens’ Leadership Forum of Chicago.

Our first, distinguished, speaker for the season will be Mr. Robert C. Reilly.

(Stand by for announcements of future speakers.)

The presentation will be on November 11, 2011 at 7:30am at the University Club of Chicago. You can register here.

Mr. Reilly is the author of The Closing of the Muslim Mind: How Intellectual Suicide Created the Modern Islamist Crisis. See also his recent piece Will the Arab Spring turn into winter?.

I will be at this event and I hope some of our readers will be there as well.

Comment Spam

Admin note: Instead of checking every once in a while for legitimate comments that have been misclassified as spam, I am now deleting the contents of the spam filter daily without looking at any of it. So if your comment doesn’t post and you want me to retrieve it you should email me ASAP. Thanks.

Crowdsourcing a New Chicagoboyz Header Image

Commenters and regular contributors here have complained that the thumbnail photos of famous Chicago boys that appeared in our blog header at https://chicagoboyz.net have gone missing. It’s true; I removed them. Some of the images are copyrighted and I decided that their inclusion in our header probably didn’t quality as fair use, so down they went.

I liked the photo header and maybe one day I will recreate it using public-domain or other alternatives to copyrighted photos. In the meantime I would be interested in suggestions for alternative header designs that might be appropriate for this blog. The only stipulations are that if you submit a design it must be a design that you created, and that by submitting a design or concept you are giving us irrevocable permission to use it in our header image.

If you own the copyright to any photos of famous Chicago boys and would be willing to let us use your photos in our header that would be good too.

Finally, if you can point us to public-domain photos of Friedman, Hayek et al that would help a great deal.

Thanks.

UPDATE: Please email any graphic designs to jonathan at chicagoboyz dot net.

A Book the Size of a Brick

Oh, lord, I thought on Monday afternoon, when I ripped opened the industrially-strong sticky tape that held the cardboard mailer closed around a hardbound book the weight and dimension of two bricks – did I really write all that? The UPS guy had just brought it, and left it on the porch after ringing the doorbell, and departing as swift as the wind . . . or as swift as one can be, working a delivery job at the height of the summer in South Texas. I wouldn’t want to linger on a doorstep either, when it’s over 100 degrees in the shade and towards the end of a working day.

Read more

Chicago Tea Party Meeting Tonight

Chicago Tea Party meeting tonight, 7:00 p.m., features Otis McDonald, plaintiff in the critically important case gun rights case McDonald v. City of Chicago.

I hope to see some of you there. I will be wearing a seersucker suit and a Gadsden Flag lapel pin — carefully positioned to cover the small splotch from a drop of spilled coffee.

UPDATE: Despite Mr. McDonald being a last-minute no-show, this was about the best Tea Party meeting I have been to yet. I hope to blog about it soon.

Upcoming Chicago Tea Party Events

The Chicago Tea Party is sponsoring a TeaCon 2011 on September 30 – October 1, 2011. Check it out.

Before that, the next Chicago Tea Party meeting is on August 3, 2011. The speaker will be Otis McDonald, plaintiff in the critically important case of McDonald v. City of Chicago — which is worth reading, even if you are not a lawyer.

I plan to be at both of these events, hopefully wearing my new shirt:

Read more

Democratic Party of Oak Park Grassroots Planning Session, Oak Park, IL; Tea Party/American Majority Grassroots/Activist Training, Oak Lawn, IL; 50th Wedding Anniversary Party, USA

On June 11, 2011 I went to the Democratic Party of Oak Park Grassroots Planning Session at the Oak Park Public Library. It was run by OFA, Mr. Obama’s campaign organization. It was open to the public, so I walked in, to check it out. It was an interesting gathering. Many people from local government were there. There were also many people who were experienced activists who travelled recently to Wisconsin, and who were working for Mr. Obama in other states during the 2012 campaign. Oak Park’s activist community is to the Midwestern Democrat Party what India was to the Victorian Empire, a bottomless source of manpower that pays for itself and can be used for campaigns around the region. It was expressly stated at the meeting that Illinois is a source of manpower for other battleground states in the region. This is one more cost to Republicans of having declined so far in Illinois.

The speakers seemed to have trouble describing themselves. They never used the L word, so I guess they are not liberals anymore. Oddly, the word Progressive was not used as a regular thing, either. I thought Progressive was the new orthodox label. There were several awkward locutions, such as “people who want to bring about change” and “people committed to change.” I suppose the idea is to keep the idea of “change” in the forefront.

For these folks, the 2012 campaign is now on, full blast. It was impressive for an outsider to see the size and energy of the group gathered on a Saturday 17 months before the election.

Read more

Bald Cow Live July 15, 2011 Chicago

I am told we will be playing at 9:00 p.m. (going on first and early since we are old and our friends are also old) at Gallery Cabaret in Bucktown. I am troubled to see we are not shown on the calendar … . Details to follow as I get that clarified. (The drink specials that night are Jever Pilsener and Huber Bock, both $3 bottles. )

Four songs recorded in 1989 here. We will be dragging out these old warhorses, for sure. We will be adding one new cover to the set: Who Will Save Rock’N’Roll? I wish Handsome Dick Manitoba could be there with us, physically, not just in spirit.

Coolidge Series

There’s now a Coolidge category to help organize Michael Kennedy’s excellent series and any related posts. This new category is bookmarked under “Notable Discussions” in the blog’s right sidebar.

George Weigel “Transforming Our Culture: John Paul II and the New Evangelization”

Men’s Leadership Forum of Chicago, May 20, 2011, 7.30 am, University Club of Chicago. Weigel will be promoting his new book The End and the Beginning: Pope John Paul II — The Victory of Freedom, the Last Years, the LegacyBiographies & Memoirs of Religious Leaders).

I read Weigel’s biography of John Paul IIBiographies & Memoirs), which went up through 1999, which was good. I also read Weigel’s Cold War era book about Catholic Just War TheoryReligion & Spirituality Books), which I would like to revisit, to see how the theory applies to current conditions.

These MLFC events are always good. I plan to attend.

TAX DAY TEA PARTY RALLY PLANNED FOR CHICAGO: April 18, 2011

[I received the following press release today. I hope many of our readers will attend.]

CHICAGO – Thousands of concerned citizens are set to gather at noon on April 18 at Daley Plaza at 50 W. Washington to protest out of control spending, unsustainable deficits and the unprecedented growth of government. People will come together in downtown Chicago, where the tea party movement began, to hold politicians of both parties accountable, stop runaway spending and defend freedom and individual liberty.

“We are very concerned with the direction of our country and our state,” said Chicago coordinator Steve Stevlic. “The decisions made in Washington and Springfield over the next two years will set a path for a generation. We feel the best way to improve the economy, create jobs, and build a sustainable future for our children and grandchildren is to reform government
and restore liberty.”

EVENT DETAILS

What: Chicago Tax Day Tea Party: Reform Government. Restore Liberty.
Where: Daley Plaza, 50 W. Washington St., Chicago
When: Noon on Tax Day, which is Monday, April 18

FEATURED SPEAKERS:
Illinois 8th District Rep. Joe Walsh, who has gained national notoriety for refusing his congressional pension and healthcare benefits, sleeping in his office and opposing the Continuing Resolutions that have funded government at 99 percent of current spending levels
Herman Cain, Businessman, Presidential Candidate
Grover Norquist, President, Americans for Tax Reform
Jonathan Hoenig, Capitalistpig.com
John Tillman, CEO, Illinois Policy Institute
Cisco Cotto, WLS-AM 890 Host
Dan Proft, WLS-AM 890 Host
Adam Andrzejewski, Founder, For the Good of Illinois
Alex Cortes, Let Freedom Ring, Wheresmywaiver.com
Dr. Arie Friedman, Docs 4 Patientcare

Media Contact: Steve Stevlic, Chicago Tea Party Patriots
stevlic@gmail.com or (708) 289-5443

************************

The Core Values of the Tea Party Patriots are:

Fiscal Responsibility
Constitutionally Limited Government
Free Markets

For more information on the Tea Party Movement in Chicago, Illinois and nationally, please visit:

Chicago
Illinois
Nationa

Happy Birthday, Emlyn, and Applause, xkcd

[ by Charles Cameron — cross-posted from Zenpundit ]

*

My son, Emlyn, turns sixteen today.

He’s not terribly fond of computers to be honest — but he does follow xkcd with appreciation, as do I from time to time: indeed, I am led to believe I receive some credit for that fact.

So… this is a birthday greeting to Emlyn, among other things. And a round of applause for Randall Munroe, creator of xkcd. And a post comparing more reliable and less reliable statistics, because that’s a singularly important issue — the more reliable ones in this/ case coming from a single individual with an expert friend, the less reliable ones coming from a huge corporation celebrated for its intelligence and creativity… and with a hat-tip to Cheryl Rofer of the Phronesisaical blog.

The DoubleQuote:

quoxkcd-01.jpg

Radiation exposure:

Today, xkcd surpassed itself / his Randallself / ourselves, with a graphic showing different levels of radiation exposure from sleeping next to someone (0.05 muSv, represented by one tiny blue square top left) or eating a banana (twice as dangerous, but only a tenth as nice) up through the levels (all the blue squares combined equal three of the tiny green ones, all the green squares combined equal 7.5 of the little brown ones, and the largest patch of brown (8Sv) is the level where immediate treatment doesn’t stand a chance of saving your life)…

The unit is Sieverts, Sv: 1000 muSv = 1 mSv, 1000 mSv= 1 Sv, sleeping next to someone is an acceptable risk at 0.05 muSv, a mammogram (3 mSv) delivers a little over 50,000 times that level of risk and saves countless lives, 250 mSv is the dose limit for emergency workers in life-saving ops — oh, and cell phone use is risk-free, zero muSv, radiation-wise, although dangerous when driving. [I apologize for needing to write “mu” when I intend the Greek letter by that name, btw — software glitch with the ZP version of WordPress.]

The xkcd diagram comes with this disclaimer:

There’s a lot of discussion of radiation from the Fukushima plants, along with comparisons to Three Mile Island and Chernobyl. Radiation levels are often described as “ times the normal level” or “% over the legal limit,” which can be pretty confusing.
 
Ellen, a friend of mine who’s a student at Reed and Senior Reactor Operator at the Reed Research Reactor, has been spending the last few days answering questions about radiation dosage virtually nonstop (I’ve actually seen her interrupt them with “brb, reactor”). She suggested a chart might help put different amounts of radiation into perspective, and so with her help, I put one together. She also made one of her own; it has fewer colors, but contains more information about what radiation exposure consists of and how it affects the body.
 
I’m not an expert in radiation and I’m sure I’ve got a lot of mistakes in here, but there’s so much wild misinformation out there that I figured a broad comparison of different types of dosages might be good anyway. I don’t include too much about the Fukushima reactor because the situation seems to be changing by the hour, but I hope the chart provides some helpful context.

Blog-friend Cheryl Rofer, whose work has included remediation of uranium tailings at the Sillamäe site in Estonia (she co-edited the book on it, Turning a Problem Into a Resource: Remediation and Waste Management at the Sillamäe Site, Estonia) links to xkcd’s effort at the top of her post The Latest on Fukushima and Some Great Web Resources and tells us it “seems both accurate and capable of giving some sense of the relative exposures that are relevant to understanding the issues at Fukushima” — contrast her comments on a recent New York Times graphic:

In other radiation news, the New York Times may have maxed out on the potential for causing radiation hysteria. They’ve got a graphic that shows everybody dead within a mile from the Fukushima plant. As I noted yesterday, you need dose rate and time to calculate an exposure. The Times didn’t bother with that second little detail.

In any case, many thanks, Cheryl — WTF, NYT? — and WTG, xkcd!

Google:

Once again, xkcd nails it.

I’ve run into this problem myself, trying to use Google to gauge the relative frequencies of words or phrases that interest me — things like moshiach + soon vs “second coming” + soon vs mahdi + soon, you know the kinds of things that I’m curious about, I forget the specific examples where it finally dawned on me how utterly useless Google’s “About XYZ,000 results (0.21 seconds)” rankings really are — but the word needs to get out.

Feh!

Paging Edward Tufte.

Sixteen today:

Happy Birthday, Emlyn!

Good-Bye, Tokyo

Minutes ago I received an Email. It seems that the US military has ordered a “voluntary evacuation of military dependents from the Tokyo/Yokosuka region.”

As my source has a very young child, her husband and daughter will be leaving the country very soon. Details are sketchy at this time, but it appears that they will be flown to Korea before repatriation to the States.