Friday, 23 February 2007

New Wheels

I’m almost 50 years old. I’ve had one new car in my life: a 1989 Pontiac Grand Am LE. This evening, flush with excitement (and nervousness), I bought my second new car, a 2007 Honda Accord SE V-6. First impressions: (1) the steering wheel doesn’t shake in my hands as I drive it; (2) I can’t tell the car is running while standing outside it; (3) the CD player kicks ass. I chose GTR as the first CD to play in the car, on the way home from the dealership. I’ll post a picture or two tomorrow.

Addendum: I bought the Grand Am on 18 August 1989. I drove it for the last time on 22 February 2007. That’s a few days over 17.5 years. During that time, I drove the car 132,595 miles, which is an average of 7,576.8 miles per year. I wish I could say that I enjoyed owning and driving the Grand Am, but I can’t. Things started falling apart almost as soon as I bought it, and it’s been running ragged for years. About the best thing I can say about the car is that it was reliable. Until early this month, when I had the flu, I never missed a day of class at UTA (except while attending philosophical conferences). The car also got me back and forth to my many bike rallies and footraces. In fact, most of the miles I put on the car came during these long drives to places like Katy, Waco, Corsicana, Tyler, Greenville, Rockwall, Bonham, Muenster, Wichita Falls, and Stephenville.


Here is Peggy Noonan’s latest column. Here is Peg Kaplan’s latest post.

Best of the Web Today



Here is the New York Times story about Stage 4 of the Tour of California.

Addendum: Here is the latest about Floyd Landis, courtesy of Darby Shaw.


Ralph Nader, for whom I voted in 1996 and 2000, is the 96th most influential figure in American history. See here.

From Today’s New York Times

To the Editor:

For months now, my Bill Clinton-loving friends have been asking me: “As a staunch Democrat and an avowed feminist, how can you possibly not support Hillary?”

David Geffen’s comments in Maureen Dowd’s Feb. 21 column succinctly sum up my reasons.

With all of Senator Clinton’s political baggage, her overcautious nature and her zero tolerance for criticism, how can any forward-looking Democrat back her?

I’m thankful that Mr. Geffen had the courage to express his convictions, and I hope that they serve as a wake-up call to voters.

D. John Loden
Napa, Calif., Feb. 22, 2007

From the Mailbag

In debates with lib friends I always like to bring our skirmishes closer to home. Somehow their minds always prefer the “larger picture” rather than how they would treat a neighbor or relative. As an example I have a favorite tale of redistribution that never gets answered.

Twin brothers inherit 200 acre side-by-side farms. One works 16 hour days and works his tail off producing corn. The other has less of a work ethic and puts in only 6 hours a day working his farm. As a result one produces twice as much corn. Why should one pay twice the taxes as the other? Or, why should one be forced to give the government 40% of his corn while his brother must give only 20%?

Silence. The real world isn’t their concern.


A Year Ago