Sunday, August 28, 2016

So how many legislators?

My last post discussed the advantages of increasing the number of legislators serving in the US House of Representatives.

This leads to the question of how many legislators should there be? The more legislators there are, the less political power that is wielded by each single legislator.

If we set the ratio of voters/representative to be equal to what it was originally (30,000/1) there would be over 10,600 representatives. Obviously, with that many congressmen there would have to be a radical reorganization.

Such a large body would need a correspondingly large arena to assemble. The current House chamber would be completely inadequate. But who says they have to physically assemble anyway? Advancements in technology can facilitate a virtual assembly and possible with less expense than the current physical assembly of 435 members. Once the infrastructure is in place the only cost would be for the legislator to 'login'. The time and cost savings by eliminating the private flights to DC, at the expense of taxpayers, would more than offset the cost of the electronic infrastructure. The additional benefit of keeping representatives closer to their respective constituencies probably cannot be overstated.

The current House chamber can be re-purposed or converted to a museum.


Further Reading

Enlarging the House of Representatives

Wyoming Rule

Increase the Size of the House

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

We Need More Legislators

Are legislators in the U.S. House of Representatives truly representative of the voters that put them in office? The motivation for the question is the fact that, on average, each congressional district has a 730,000+ population. In 1789 that number was roughly 30,000.

Is it time to increase the number of legislators in the House?


  • It would be more expensive to pay more congressmen and their facilities and staff.

(That's the only con I can think of at the moment.)


  • In context of the entire Federal budget the expense of operating the legislature is not significant.
  • The more members of the legislature we have, the more difficult it is for PACs and other special interest groups to influence (buy) individual legislators.
  • With smaller districts a campaign could be run for less expense which would enable more candidates.
  • Smaller districts would align more readily with natural boundaries of real communities.
  • Smaller districts would enhance the political power of more diverse communities.

There is much more to say on this. I'll be back.


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The King Does Not Know

If I were king of the United States (Not president because I need absolute power) I would quickly set about dismantling entire sectors of our Federal government. The devil is in the details so lets not bother with all that now. The important point is my motivation.

You see, I do not know what is best for you or our 300+ million fellow citizens. Therefore my lack of knowledge must compel me to remove as many burdens or any other interferences brought on by the Federal government as possible.

I do not know what kind of car you need, what you should feed your kids, how much money you should make, what school you should attend, which doctor to visit, or any other major or minor aspect of your life. I don't even know your name. How can a decent, benevolent King with so little knowledge tolerate such an intrusion on his citizens?

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Where two or more are gathered.

Christopher Hitchens asserted that religion, or belief in God, is ultimately a totalitarian, and therefore evil, belief system. Hitchens enjoyed pointing out that bad persons will do bad things and good persons will do good things. But to get a good person to do bad things required religion.

There are two aspects of Hitchens' observation that show it to be so incomplete as to be disingenuous. First, any authoritarian pressure or peer pressure can persuade a good person to do bad things. Second, it is also possible to pressure a bad person to do good things.

As soon as an individual, 'good' or 'bad', steps into the world, the persuasion and pressure begins. Persons can be driven to the most noble or most vile of deeds. At no point in that range is religion required.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Almost a year

It's been almost a year since my last post.

Guess I'm not really a blogger after all.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

New Look on

I'm using one of the new templates on blogger. It's definitely an improvement.

I'm Obviously not a Blogger

I haven't posted anything in a while and the only reason I'm putting this post up is to have some semblance of a continuance here. Frankly I lost interest in blogging and beside, all I ever really did was provide links to other news with the occasional comment. Instapundit does a much better job of that sort of thing than I so why should I bother?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Born to (NOT) Drive

Bad drivers may in part have their genes to blame, suggests a new study by UC Irvine neuroscientists.

People with a particular gene variant performed more than 20 percent worse on a driving test than people without it - and a follow-up test a few days later yielded similar results. About 30 percent of Americans have the variant.
Perhaps that gecko will want to get a DNA test before issuing a policy.

Click Me

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Roadrunner would be proud

What could be more fun than launching anvils?

Coins from a dead man's eyes

Senators diverted $2.6 billion in funds in a defense spending bill to pet projects largely at the expense of accounts that pay for fuel, ammunition and training for U.S. troops, including those fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to an analysis.
Click Me

High-speed Digital

If you have $200,000+ available then test out the new Weisscam HS-2.

Click Me

It does 4000fps at 720p and 2000fps at 1080p

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The perfect computer memory

ARGONNE NATIONAL LABORATORY, an organisation that carries out research for the US Department of Energy, have discovered materials that could have far reaching implications for the electronics industry.
It's in the field of electro-magnetic memory where these materials may find a home in the coming years. Memory chips based on multiferroics could theoretically offer static memory that doesn't require constant refreshing, holds data over loss of power and is fast to both write and read... the holy grail of computer memory.
Click Me

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Web surfing is good for the brain?

Adults with little Internet experience show changes in their brain activity after just one week online, a new study finds.

The results suggest Internet training can stimulate neural activation patterns and could potentially enhance brain function and cognition in older adults.

Click Me

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Funeral

My father no longer gasps and struggles. He departed this temporary home on September 29th and we laid his bones to rest on October 2nd.

The visitation and funeral provided me the opportunity to see friends from my old hometown that I had not seen in decades.

My brother in law is a former minister and did an excellent job presiding.

The former preachers wife from my hometown church sang beautifully. It was truly stunning.

A former co-worker of my father and several grandchildren offered some inspirational, personal memorials.

My thanks to everyone who was there to say goodbye to Daddy.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Border patrol cuts!

Even though the Border Patrol now reports that almost 1,300 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border is not under effective control, and the Department of Justice says that vast stretches of the border are “easily breached,” and the Government Accountability Office has revealed that three persons “linked to terrorism” and 530 aliens from “special interest countries” were intercepted at Border Patrol checkpoints last year, the administration is nonetheless now planning to decrease the number of Border Patrol agents deployed on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Why don't we just open the border? Why continue pretending that anyone in authority is actually concerned about borders?

Friday, September 25, 2009

As sovereignty dissolves

From an Imprimis article by Jeremy Rabkin
Where does this trend away from the sovereignty of national constitutions lead? I do not think the danger is a world tyranny. I think that idea is fantastical. Rather what it will lead to, I think, is an undermining of the idea that national governments can protect people, with the result that people will start looking for defense elsewhere. We saw this in an extreme way in Iraq when it collapsed into chaos before the surge, and people looked for protection to various ethnic or sectarian militias. A similar phenomenon can be seen today in Europe with the formation of various separatist movements. We’re even hearing loud claims for Scottish independence.
I hope he's right about the 'world tyranny' thing.

South Carolina 16 - Ole Miss 10

Guess Ole Miss wasn't really a #4 team after all.

Dollars? For what? Wallpaper?

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao expressed concern as early as March over the safety of his country's huge US bond holdings now worth more than 800 billion dollars, making it the largest creditor to the United States.

Then, Chinese central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan, who supervises more than two trillion dollars worth of dollar reserves, the world's largest, raised the stakes by calling for a new reserve currency in place of the dollar.
We can accuse the Chinese of doing a lot weird and senseless things but they ain't stupid. The US is on a debt path that absolutely can not be sustained and the Chinese know it. They believe the dollar is seriously in danger of becoming worthless and they could be right.

Follow the rules please

"Iran is breaking rules that all nations must follow," Obama said.
Well who would of thought that Iran would break the rules?

Hmm, hmm, hmm

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lots of oil

The oil industry has been on a hot streak this year, thanks to a series of major discoveries that have rekindled a sense of excitement across the petroleum sector, despite falling prices and a tough economy.
Click Me

Friday, September 18, 2009

Folks ain't buying it no more;

Fifty-six percent (56%) of voters nationwide now oppose the health care reform proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That’s the highest level of opposition yet measured and includes 44% who are Strongly Opposed.
Emphasis mine.

I guess the Democrat plan to label all opposition as violent and racist is not quite as affective as they had hoped.

Click Me

Samurai Justice

The intruder's left hand was nearly severed -- Mr. Guglielmi described it as "hanging on by a thread" -- and the man suffered a severe cut to the upper body. The 49-year-old suspect, whom police described as a habitual offender, died at the scene.
What a way to go. Skewered.
the suspect had 29 prior arrests, mostly for burglary and breaking and entering, and had been released Saturday from a Baltimore County jail after serving about a year for auto theft.
29 prior arrests! Perhaps a justice system that dealt more harshly with criminals would have saved the suspects life.

Click Me

Watch the kids from a satellite?

GPS tracking of the kids;
Parents will be able to see their child's location on Google maps by texting 'wru' to a special number, or clicking 'where r you' on the secure website linked to the device. The street address and postcode will be displayed.
Click Me

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What is health care?

The term 'health care' gets thrown around quite a bit these days but it's really a very vague term. If I could wave a magic wand and grant everyone the right to health care what would that mean? Would that include a right to food? One can't stay healthy without food. What about water? If we have a right to health care does it mean I can demand a Doctors attention every time I get a headache?

Missile defense! What missile defense?

President Obama dismayed America's allies in Europe and angered his political opponents at home today when he formally ditched plans to set up a missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.
Why should this action by Obama surprise anyone?
But it (missile defense) had hobbled relations with Russia, which considered it both a security threat and an unnecessary political provocation in its own backyard.
Why would Russia consider defense a threat why should we care?

Click Me

In an April speech in Prague, Obama hailed the “courageous” Poles and Czechs for agreeing to host ten missile interceptors and a radar site, respectively. When the Czechs signed the initial deal for the radar installation last July, a suspiciously timed “technical difficulty” reduced Russian gas exports to Prague by half. Last November, Russia moved missiles to Kaliningrad, bordering Poland. Now, Polish and Czech courage gets its perverse reward.

Click Me

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

You Lie!

Joe Wilson was right. President Obama did lie.

Ole Miss watch

The Rebels have now climbed to #5 in the AP poll.
1 Florida (56) ----- 2-0 1491
2 Texas (1) -------- 2-0 1404
3 USC (1) ---------- 2-0 1396
4 Alabama (2) ------ 2-0 1328
5 Ole Miss --------- 1-0 1145
5 Penn State ------- 2-0 1145
7 Brigham Young ---- 2-0 1122
8 California ------- 2-0 1058
9 LSU -------------- 2-0 951
10 Boise State ----- 2-0 945
Hopefully the Rebels won't have as much problem with Southeastern Louisiana as they did with Memphis for three quarters. If they don't come out strong they'll get passed by Penn State - unless Penn State somehow manages to blow it against Temple. They could possibly get passed by BYU also.

Although Alabama remained at #4 their total points went up by 172 since the pre-season poll. They're getting very close to Texas and USC who are practically tied.

Florida and Texas have both lost a few points since the pre-season poll.

Satan loving kids will be kids

A 15-year-old girl who allegedly worships Satan was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of lighting a fire at her Orangevale church.
And what does the little demons mother say...?
"Well, you know, kids sometimes don't always like what their parents want them to do," said Annette Hilt, the suspect's mother. "Everybody knows that."
Sure mom. Everybody knows.
This is frighteningly far beyond stupid.

Click Me

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Enough Computing

Yesterday I bought a used computer.

For $60 I got the following:
- 1.7Ghz P4
- 32M Onboard Graphics
- 384M RAM
- 40G Hare Drive
- Several USB ports
- Ethernet

Keyboard, mouse and monitor were not included.

For $60 I can email, view youtube videos, surf the net and other basic computing stuff. Seemed to me like a reasonable deal. I almost never do any compute intensive jobs on my home PC so why spend hundreds of dollars?

For around $150 I could have gotten a slightly more up to date 64bit system.

Update: The hard drive crashed. Luckily I have an old spare 40G hanging around.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

States taking the lead

In light of the overwhelming tendency toward centralization of government power it is refreshing to occasionally see states taking the initiative.


Update: I am not in favor of secession. However, I would support the right of secession.