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Even though TWC hadn't seen it before, this exceptional blues short, set to Lonnie Mack's Oreo Cookie Blues, has been around a while. Download the clip here or watch it here. Your kids or grandkids will enjoy it as well.
Terrance Alexander has been suspended or reprimanded 13 times by the Atlanta Police Department since 2001 for violating department rules. The department fired him in May, after he pulled a woman from her car, threw her to the ground, handcuffed and arrested her for stopping too long at the airport while she was picking up her 78-year-old mother. Alexander was not assigned to the airport but was working a second job directing traffic. The woman settled a lawsuit against the police department for $350,000, but a civil service board ordered the department to reinstate Alexander.
So, the Old Lady isn't having enough fun lately. Last night she hosts a table (not sure exactly what that means) at the Beverly Wilshire. Fancy shindig celebrating the 50th anniversary of Milton Friedman's ideas on school choice. And, yeah, Rob from the Friedman Foundation wondered where I was. At Sam's Club, Dude. With two kids, one of whom was only ambulatory because I doped him up (heavily) with Children's Motrin before leaving the Casa. Near as I can tell, Californicate Governor Schwarzengroper was a special guest of honor and was, apparently, quite engaging (not that TWC would know, mind you). Heard the chow wasn't bad neither. You guys really ought to read Free to Choose.
That guy Meathead just annoys me to no end. Somebody ought to buy him a cigar and tell him to lay off the fried foods. For more than a year we denizens of the Golden State have been bombarded by innocuous sounding infomercials touting the bennies of pre-school.
What is the connection between Meathead and pre-school? Easy, Reiner has hijacked millions of dollars from the fifty-cents-per-pack Tobacco Tax fund to soften up the electorate and lull them into a YES vote on HIS universal pre-school initiative come June.
That’s illegal you say? Not quite. Reiner is walking just this side of illegal because he never once mentions his initiative; only that preschool is good for kids and good for society. It falls under TWC rule number 2:
What’s legal isn’t always moral
What’s illegal isn’t always immoral
I set out this morning to pitch Shikha and Mrs TWC’s piece appearing in the San Francisco Chronicle, and I got sidetracked. Sorry.
If Reiner's initiative is approved in June, individuals making more than $400,000 a year ($800,000 for families) will face a 1.7 percent tax increase to raise $2.5 billion to finance three hours of free preschool a day for all of California's 4-year-olds -- even the 62 percent who already attend preschool without universal subsidies.
As a tax guy, I can clarify that tax increase. It means that the top personal income tax rate in California will increase from 9.3% to 11.0% 12.0% (1.7 percentage points on top of the 1.0 percentage point increase in tax effective in 2005 applied to incomes of one million and up that I forgot about). That's really a 19% increase in the rate of tax.
Then there is the Canadian model.
The final price tag for Quebec's day care program is 33 times what was originally projected: It was supposed to cost $230 million over five years, but now gobbles $1.7 billion every year.
You can make book that Reiner’s initiative will become law. He has enormous resources available to him, including the $5.00 per carton that you smokers cough up (get it?) every week or so. He's also willing to go to the mat to protect his personal bucket of taxpayer's blood, vowing to oppose other efforts to tack additional taxes onto smokes in order to fund hospital trauma rooms.
The opposition? Lisa, Shikha, and a dozen others who are working with hundreds of dollars rather than millions, and besides, who could oppose free universal child care? Not sure where in the Constitution that part is, but I'm sure someone can enlighten me.
One more reason to leave the Great State of Californicate.
I tagged this onto another post on Friday and then it turned into a clumsy update and now a couple of wiseguys emailed and wanted to know if Salma Hayek was related to Frederich Hayek, and so we have a new post instead.
Salma Hayek? Is there a connection to Frederich Hayek?
Probably not, but one can never tell. "Hayek" is a Czech name, Hájek. Since F.A. Hayek was Austrian, it is not at all surprising that he might have a Czech, or Bohemian, name, since Bohemia was long part of the Hapsburg domains of Austria. With Salma, we have something else. She was born in Mexico. It is reported that her father was Lebanese and her mother Spanish. There is a name in Arabic that could be rendered "Hayek," H.â'ik ("Weaver"), so perhaps that is it. Now, there are many German, even Bohemian, immigrants to Mexico. There is even a "Bohemia" beer made in Mexico. The existence of Mexican Czech Hayeks is thus to be expected. Such an origin of Salma's name would not be surprising, but apparently the explanation is her Lebanese connection instead.
This is an interesting version of The Road to Serfdom that was originally published as a booklet by General Motors (Thought Starter Series) and it also appeared in Look Magazine (there's a blast from the past). Frankly, TWC is surprised because I thought those guys at GM were always centrist-leaning supporters of big government's control of the economy through trade restrictions, regulations, and corporate welfare schemes. GM does Hayek. Go Figure.
Many of you who subscribe or pick up Reason on the newstands saw Let a Thousand Choices Bloom. Reason tapped a panel of the nation's preeminent education experts, starting with Mrs TWC, and asked for insights into education reform in America.
Fifty years after Milton Friedman first proposed the idea of education vouchers, school choice proposals come in all shapes and sizes. We asked a dozen experts what reforms they think are most necessary and promising to improve American education. We also asked them to identify the biggest obstacles to positive change.
As an aside, I always find it interesting that so many people who identify themselves as Pro-Choice cast their lots with the No-Choice, public school monopoly crowd when it comes to education. Mandatory is the Mantra. Hmmm. Odd.
And, courtesy of Liberty Fund and IHS, Mrs TWC is being pampered with an all-expense-paid weekend in Washington DC where she and about a score of others will spend the weekend kicking around the ideas of Frederich Hayek, author of The Fatal Conceit and The Road to Serfdom. I know, it's a tough break, but she's dedicated.
The Mr Mommonsewer
Third time around this barn because the computer keeps eating this post.