Incite -- (v) 1: give an incentive; 2: provoke or stir up; "incite a riot"; 3: urge on; cause to act
Friday, March 30, 2007

Written by: Beck

Steve Forbes endorses the candidacy of Rudy Giuliani. And that, my friends, does more to encourage me about Rudy than anything I've heard prior. Why? Glad you asked. Remember when Forbes made a moderately successful run for the Republican nomination back in the 90's? Remember the single issue which propelled him into the spotlight and added legitimacy to his whole campaign? That's right. The flat tax. Forbes is to be a "Senior Policy Advisor" to the Giuliani campaign, and that means good tax policy. Let's hope.

Next, Scott Burgess's interview with Michael Chriton is definitely worth reading. The subjects range from climate change to nanotechnology to GM food.

Finally, the UN Human Rights Council continues to hold itself up as the greatest embarrassment of a great embarrassment. Every additional dollar that goes to the support of the United Nations serves to weaken freedom just a little bit more.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

If you didn't see this coming, then just do us all a favorf and tear up your voter registration
Written by: Beck

Alternative title: Welcome to Europe!

Proving once again that the Democratic Party is the party of socialism, here it comes, wait for it... wait for it...

The largest tax increase... in history!

It turns out that actions really do have consequences. On well, time for the Republicans to shine at what they're evidently best at: being the party of opposition.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

A public service message with nothing whatsoever to do about politics. Honest.
Written by: Beck

I would like to formally request a favor from all of mankind: please don't drive in the left lane of the highway ever again.

Thank you for your consideration.

And just for you, I'll elaborate a bit. You see, I used to rant about fools driving slowly in the fast lane. And by, "Slowly," I mean, "Less than the speed limit plus twenty."

Maybe at some point--perhaps if this post gets any comments--I'll explain exactly why it is that I have a problem with people driving only 10 MPH over the speed limit in the left lane. For right now though, I'll just stick to why I now want none of you at any speed in the left lane.

You see, I've come to realize that every single person on the road, by driving in the left lane, is being inconsiderate to every other person who would like to arrive at their destination marginally faster than other lanes permit. This even applies to people like myself who would rather be going faster than the typical left lane driver, as we leave slower left lane drivers stuck either trying to find an opportunity to slide out of our way for a few seconds, or trying to understand why suddenly someone is driving very close behind them and flashing their high beams.

So, the only possible solution which discriminates against no drivers of any vehicle of any sort? Completely close the left lane off altogether. Once no one can take advantage of the opportunities provided to faster, abler drivers by the left lane, no one will be discriminated against and we will all have moved a step closer to the all-embracing equality towards which idealists everywhere have long aspired.

In case you'd like to share your thoughts with me on this matter, I'll be the guy going 135 down the freeway. On the shoulder.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Perhaps it's best not to think about it too hard
Written by: Beck

Looking for inspiration for something to read about, I clicked over to to have a look at the headlines. I was not disappointed. Right there on the front page I see the leed story, Coroner: Anna Nicole Smith Didn't Suffer.

Anna Nicole didn't suffer... and I still don't care. I just can't find it in me to care about the trials and tribulations of this woman and her bizarre entanglements. And yet I'm still fascinated by it! The number of people laying claim to fatherhood of her daughter alone defies belief. The magnitude of our collective obsession with this freakish story is equalled only by the insignificance of its importance.

So much of life is like that though. Just look at the upcoming presidential contest. Republican front runner Rudolph Giuliani is on his third wife, has had cancer, and lived for a while with a gay couple. Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton is, well, married to Bill Clinton. Barack Obama has one hell of a colorful story, and the current Republican dark horse of choice? Fred Thompson, an actor. He'll be in good company with other former actors-turned-politician Ronald Reagan, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, and others.

And by "others" I mean "Sonny Bono."

And why is all of the above both true and relevant? Because, just like the Anna Nicole story, we prioritize our decision making according to criteria completely bereft of merit. Put more simply, we humans are really bad decision makers. Inexcusably bad.

Which makes you think twice about the virtues of Democracy.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday Quickie
Written by: Beck

Stolen word for word from my little Joke Of The Day gadget on my nifty customized Google homepage:
A man is sitting on a bench in the park reading a newspaper. Suddenly he throws the paper onto the ground and yells, "All politicians are assholes."

A man sitting next to him in a finely pressed suit says, "I take offense to that!"

The pissed-off guy asks him, "Why? Are you a politician?"

"No," he replies, "I'm an asshole."
I imagine you can figure out for yourself why I like this joke so much.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The score
Written by: Beck

Not that anyone is reading this site currently, but in case any of my old readers should choose to return, and should they prove curious about where I've been, here's a bit of an explanation...

Starting in 2006, I found myself far too busy with my job to continue writing for INCITE. Before, I'd had the sort of schedule and work load that allowed for voluminous reading and plentiful writing. That vanished with a major promotion to kick off 2006. Now, however, I'm leaving the company I've been working at two and a half years. I'll be moving in with my girlfriend and, most importantly, not employed. So, once again, I'm going to have the time necessary to devote to blogging.

Not that there won't be changes. At the hight of INCITE's over-three-year history (the anniversary passed unremarked on March 3), I was spending the entire day reading and writing, cranking out 3-5 longish posts a day. My plan now is to write, at most, one post per day. I'll be happy if I can sustain a pace of four per week. Further, I plan to do less of the link-and-comment style post I always tended towards in the past (see the two posts prior to this one for an example of the style) and more of writing straight up thought pieces where I rant and ramble about whatever crosses my mind.

I'm also not going to be going out of my way to market this site like I did in the past. From now on, this is going to be my place to come and ruminate. To think out loud. As such, I've decided to convert INCITE from a group blog into a solo blog. I've removed all the other writers from this site (not that they actually ever wrote very much). The archives of what they've written shall remain, but they shan't write anything new. If anyone out there in the internets wants to read this site, great. If not, that's fine too.

Over the next two to three weeks I'll be quite busy--I'm moving to Connecticut (sayonara New Jersey!). So I may again lapse into silence for several days or even a week. But rest assured, my long hiatus from the blogosphere has come to an end.

Shorter version: Beck's back bitches!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Poor decision making skills
Written by: Beck

When feeling homesick during a camping trip in the woods with your Boy Scout troop, what's an ADHD addled 12 year old to do? Go wandering off at random through the woods in order to hitchhike home. But of course. That's chapter 1 of the Boy Scout Manual.
A 12-year-old Boy Scout missing for four days in North Carolina's wilderness wandered away from his campsite because he was homesick and planned to hitchhike home, the boy's father said Tuesday.


Michael told his father he slept in tree branches during the night, drank river water and prayed he wouldn't get sick. He said he got homesick because some of his closest friends had not gone on the camping trip, so he planned to walk to a highway and hitchhike to his home in Greensboro, North Carolina.

"We're going to have that lecture about hitchhiking again," Auberry said.
You might want to think about also having that lecture about not wandering off into the woods completely at random again too. I have a suspicion this kid, despite escaping Darwin's clutches once, will still find some creative and (hopefully) amusing way to remove himself from the gene pool at some point in the future.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

United Nations, fearing insufficient impotence, seeks to neuter self
Written by: Beck

The now disbanded U.N. Commission on Human Rights was once exhibit 'A' for those seeking to highlight the flaws of the United Nations system. The fact that the very organization tasked with identifying & condemning human rights abuses internationally was composed of a long list of the world's worst human rights abusers provoked cries of outrage and demands for reform.

One of the eventual "reforms" to actually take place was the reinvention of the Commission into the Human Rights Council. Evidently when it comes to reform, the best the UN can muster is to swap one C-word for another & rearrange the order. Now, nations who are marginally less coddled than before are seeking to slash what little symbolic power remains to the UNHRC.
Cuba is leading a bid by a number of countries to strip the Human Rights Council of its power to investigate and condemn violations, a move some activists warn could jeopardize the whole U.N.'s credibility.

The 47 member states of the new U.N. watchdog, set up last year to replace its largely-discredited predecessor, are quietly negotiating a package of measures which will define its role.

At stake is the fate of "special procedures" -- independent investigators appointed to report on countries where abuses are suspected. The former Secretary-General Kofi Annan described these rapporteurs as the "crown jewels" of the U.N. human rights machinery.
Crown jewels, family jewels, take your pick. The United Nations' never ending descents into farce never fail to amaze and amuse.

My advice to the United States on how to react? We should back Cuba. Back Cuba, and at the same time, expand their efforts. If the United Nations can't be abolished, at least we can limit it to the few things it actually does well, namely keeping unelected bureaucrats comfortable and well fed so that they can go about condemning the United States for the crime of being more successful than anyone else.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Written by: Beck

Time to warm up the engines.

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