American Elephants

Time Travel by American Elephant
March 3, 2010, 2:43 am
Filed under: Architecture, History, Music, Pop Culture | Tags: , ,

Grab the kids and travel back over 100 years with this rare footage from a streetcar traveling down Market Street in San Francisco in 1905, a year before the great earthquake and subsequent fire.

I love that there were apparently no traffic laws! Reminds me of our returning soldiers accounts of what traffic is like in Iraq. (Actually, bike messengers in SF still observe no traffic laws to this day.)

For comparison here is the same trip taken 100 years later in 2005:

This is exactly the same route I would take to work everyday when I lived in San Francisco, straight down Market to the Embarcadero, although I traveled it underground on MUNI.

The song in the first video is La Femme D’argent by Air, the second is Sa Trincha by Sergio. Pretty good for electronica.

(h/t AoS)

Obama’s “Government Competition” Lie by American Elephant
March 3, 2010, 2:10 am
Filed under: Health Care, Socialism | Tags: , ,

Time and time again, Barack Obama tried to justify a “public option” (which was always intended to destroy the private market), by claiming it would provide “competition” to the private market. That it would keep the private market honest.

It was always a bald-faced lie.

The United States Post Office was $3.8 billion dollars in the hole last year. While UPS and FedEx both ran a profit despite monopolistic laws prohibiting them from delivering first-class mail or using Americans’ mailboxes. The Post Office will continue to exist despite losing more money than the entire Gross Domestic Product of many nations. Government programs never go out of business no matter how poorly they are run, they just take more and more from already overburdened taxpayers.

So it is with any government program.

There is no such thing as “government competition”. The government does not compete, it compels; or as George Washington put it, “Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force”.

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