Featured Article

The Gods of Liberalism Revisited

 

The lie hasn't changed, and we still fall for it as easily as ever.  But how can we escape the snare?

 

READ ABOUT IT...

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Lib Speech Police Think They're on a Roll


Don't tell me your surprised. From WorldNetDaily:

Now that radio talk-show host Don Imus has been banished, it's time to clean up the rest of talk radio, says a partisan media watchdog group headed by David Brock.

Next in the crosshairs for alleged expressions of 'bigotry and hate speech targeting, among other characteristics, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion and ethnicity' are, according to Media Matters for America, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck, Neal Boortz, John Gibson and Michael Smerconish.

I didn't approve of what Imus said, either, but as it's been pointed out, the hypocrisy of those screaming the loudest (Al Sharpton, Je$$ie Jack$on, et al) is disgusting.

Now they think they're on a roll, and would like to shut up anyone that pokes a hole in the blanket liberal voice in the media.

They'll find Limbaugh and some of these others a much tougher target, though. I think they threw Imus under the bus because while he was a liberal, he had too much intellectual integrity. I've heard him on a number of occasions acknowledge the "shortcomings" of John Kerry and some other lame liberals. While Imus has been true to his ideology, he's not afraid to acknowledge instances where it and its representatives come up short. That made him expendable.

In the liberal world, if you're not toeing the line, you're expendable, especially if you cross the race pimps like Sharpton and Jack$on.


Baby Stabbed 135 Times


From Fox News:

STILLWATER, Minn. — A 17-year-old stabbed her newborn baby 135 times and disposed of her body in a garbage can outside her home, authorities alleged Thursday.


Johnson noted that the state's safe harbor law allows mothers to leave infants at any hospital within 72 hours of birth with no legal consequences.

"She could have walked away and the baby would have been adopted by a family that wanted it. Instead she destroys two lives: her own and the baby's," he said.

I thought abortion was going to make every child a wanted child?


Never Wrong to Teach the Right Thing


The Robbinsdale Radical believes I'm having a rough week because it was announced yesterday that a report found students who participated in an abstinence program were just as likely to end up having sex as those who didn't. The gloating is understandable, given our ideological opposition, and initially I won't begrudge the Radical a moment of satisfaction.

Okay, the moment is over.

These results are definitely disappointing to those of us who support teaching young people to be sexually responsible and wait until marriage.

However, as a Fox News report points out, the study only looked at four programs out of hundreds across the country, and they were some of the earliest programs, so who knows if other programs aren't working better?

We also don't know the full background of the children involved, specifically whether the teachings of the program was being reinforced at home and in other areas of their lives. From the Fox report:

"This report confirms that these interventions are not like vaccines. You can't expect one dose in middle school, or a small dose, to be protective all throughout the youth's high school career," said Harry Wilson, the commissioner of the Family and Youth Services Bureau at the Administration for Children and Families.

Advocates of sexual responsibility such as myself have always stressed that society should be sending a broad and consistent message of sexual responsibility (starting at home and being reinforced at church, school, in the neighborhoods, and in the media--yes, they should be expected to send a responsible message, too, just as they did back in those "despicable '50s").

The study isn't all good news for sexual anarchists, though. A claim frequently made by condom advocates was also left unsupported by the study:
"I really do think it's a two-part story. First, there is no evidence that the programs increased the rate of sexual abstinence," said Chris Trenholm, a senior researcher at Mathematica who oversaw the study. "However, the second part of the story that I think is equally important is that we find no evidence that the programs increased the rate of unprotected sex."

Ultimately, though it's never wrong to teach the right thing. Opposing efforts to teach young people to be sexually responsible and wait until marriage to have sex is ludicrous.

Saying that because of these findings we shouldn't be teaching abstinence is like saying that because you taught your children not to play in the street, and they ignored you played in the street anyway, that you shouldn't have taught them not to play in the street.


Friday, April 13, 2007

Archived Articles

Here is a link to some older archived Dakota Voice articles.


Life and Hope


I attended the funeral of a friend's 4-year-old daughter today.

The little girl had fought a brain tumor for more than a year. When she was diagnosed, doctors gave her only a few months at the very best, even with treatment. However, God miraculously completely removed the tumor for a while, and she got to stay with her parents much longer than anyone expected. But the cancer came back and eventually claimed her young life earlier this week.

I wouldn't dare try to compare my feelings to the agony her parents are going through right now, but the death of this little girl has brought me to stop and ponder a while, as she and my son were almost the same age (he was born two weeks before she). They went to nursery and Sunday School together, and now my 4-year-old son is trying to understand why his little friend isn't around anymore.

As the preacher said at the service today, while death is never easy, it's an altogether different thing when a little one dies, when parents must bury their children instead of the other way around. As the pastor said, it is a stark reminder to us that something is wrong in this world.

Death was never meant to be a part of human existence. God in all His goodness never intended for humans to know sickness, suffering and death. He had a life of ease and joy planned for us.

It was the sin of our great...grandparents Adam and Eve, who thought their way was better than God's way, and chose to bring this curse upon our now fallen world.

But this little girl is now in heaven, and since her parents are Christians, in the midst of their sadness they do at least know they will one day see their daughter again.

It's so good to know that if we'll come to God, He gives us hope. Hope for this life and the next, even as we are surrounded by the disappointments of this temporal life.


Thune: Republican "Rock Star"

John Quinn says John Thune could be the Republican "Obama." From KOTA:

'He is young. He is articulate. He is tall, slender and well spoken,' Quinn says, laying out a description of Thune that is intentionally and eerily familiar to that of another player on the political scene.

'Thune could very well be the Republican counterpoint to Barack Obama,' Quinn says.

And the parallels are striking. Both Thune and Obama are 46. Both are taller than average height, and most importantly, Quinn says, both are endowed with the same easy charisma and aw-shucks good looks that play well under the bright lights of Presidential politics in the digital media age. Especially with women.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

To Plant or Not To Plant


Plant more trees to fight global warming. Wait, trees are causing global warming! Let's cut down some trees!

From Fox News:

If you need further evidence that hysteria is outpacing science in the global warming debate, consider the study published this week about Northern Hemisphere forests actually causing significant global warming.

Researchers from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory reported in the 'Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences' (April 17) that while tropical forests exert a cooling influence on global climate, forests in northern regions exert a warming influence — and it’s not just a trivial climatic effect.

I'm glad these scientists know how global warming is occurring and what's going to happen!


Hillary Bombs in Ultra-Lib Poll


I'd been expecting to see this for some time now. From CNS News:

In an unscientific poll released Thursday, the liberal activist group MoveOn.org revealed that its members believe Sen. Barack Obama is the best choice to lead the country out of Iraq. Presumed Democratic 2008 frontrunner Sen. Hillary Clinton lagged far behind.

he Illinois Democrat earned 28 percent of members' support in the organization's "virtual town hall vote" held online this week.

Former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina and U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (Ohio) took second and third place with 25 percent and 17 percent, respectively. Clinton (N.Y.), with almost 11 percent, came in fourth.

She's not bombing because she's not liberal enough (though she has gone to some efforts to hide her liberalism, as they all have), but because of her tremendous "negative" numbers. I can't recall the exact numbers, but a few months ago they were stunningly high, even among Democrats.

These other candidates are more of an unknown quantity--a definite plus when you're a Democrat.


Biblical Contradiction of Liberalism


Michael Medved's column yesterday contains excellent insight on today's culture of wealth-bashing and liberals' never-ending quest for victimhood.

In the column, he points to Leviticus 19:15 which says, "You shall not commit a perversion of justice: you shall not favor the poor and you shall not honor the great, with righteousness shall you judge your fellow."

It should, indeed, come as a revelation and a rebuke to all liberals that Holy Scripture identifies 'favoring the poor' as 'a perversion of justice.'

Medved goes on to clarify:
Concerning the crucial sentence, Rabbi SchlomoYitzhaki (Rashi), the great 11th Century sage commented: "'You shall not favor the poor' means that you should not say that a wealthy man is obligated to help the poor, therefore it is proper for a judge to rule in favor of the poor litigant. Torah insists that justice be rendered honestly; as important as charity is, it must not interfere with justice."

What does this mean?
Leftists should take note: "loving your neighbor" doesn't involve protecting him against the just consequences of his own mistakes, or giving him special dispensation if he's unlucky, or punishing the productive in the name of helping the less fortunate.

A just and loving society, in other words, doesn't enshrine victimhood and doesn't see a contradiction between justice and compassion. Both are attributes of the living God but they shouldn't be confused.

So how about just seeking truth and justice, instead of bashing a particular cross-section of Americans in an attempt to elevate a different cross-section (otherwise known as class envy)?


Jesus Tomb Scholars Backtrack

From the Jerusalem Post:

Several prominent scholars who were interviewed in a bitterly contested documentary that suggests that Jesus and his family members were buried in a nondescript ancient Jerusalem burial cave have now revised their conclusions, including the statistician who claimed that the odds were 600:1 in favor of the tomb being the family burial cave of Jesus of Nazareth, a new study on the fallout from the popular documentary shows.

"Personally, I'm skeptical that this is the tomb of Jesus and I made this point very clear to the filmmakers," Gibson is quoted as saying.


No Cell Phone Law in Rapid City

Rapid City wisely passed up an opportunity to slap a new law on the books. The council declined the opportunity to outlaw cell phones while driving.

From the Rapid City Journal:

"Cell phones certainly are a factor in that -- as are everything from shaving, putting on make up and doing other things in a car when driving should be the primary focus,” he said.

Tieszen and Green indicated that the city can issue a citation for careless or reckless driving if a driver has committed a separate driving offense.

I agree that they can be distracting, but so can a teenager blah blah blah-ing at 110 MPH (the mouth-speed, that is) with their friends while driving.

I think the careless driving statute is enough to cover this, if police see someone being a complete idiot.


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Illegal Immigration: Cheap Labor Isn't Cheap


Someone has finally calculated the cost to the taxpayer of allowing chaos at our national border.

From WorldNetDaily:

A new study by the Heritage Foundation's Robert Rector found a household headed by an individual without a high school education, including about two-thirds of illegal aliens, costs U.S. taxpayers more than $32,000 in federal, state and local benefits. That same family contributes an average of $9,000 a year in taxes, resulting in a net tax burden of $22,449 each year.

Over the course of the household's lifetime that tax burden translates to $1.1 million.

'Would any of us buy shares in a company that we knew would produce a loss of a million dollars a share,' asks Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, in response to the study. 'Cheap labor is not cheap at the cost of over a million dollars per head of household.'

Rector's study, 'The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Households to the U.S. Taxpayer,' examines the economics of the 17.7 million American households made up of people without a high-school degree. Using numbers from the Census Bureau, the Congressional Research Service, the Bureau of Labor Standards and other government agencies, Rector determined what they earn, what they spend and what they receive in government services.


Big Brother Fights Neighbors from Hell


This is the kind of "supernanny" stuff you get in a socialist environment.

From Fox News:

The special housing units are the latest government program intended to tackle anti-social behavior, a catchall term for alcoholism, petty crime and abusiveness. Prime Minister Tony Blair has made the fight against anti-social behavior a priority in his final term in office, claiming that community links have been weakened by indifferent parenting and a rowdy youth culture.

The supervised housing units are meant to support a series of government social work projects targeting problem families with measures ranging from near-daily visits from social workers to — in more difficult cases — removal to the special housing.

Particularly unmanageable families would be sent to units where they would be subject to curfews, visiting restrictions, and monitored 24 hours a day by social workers.


I'm sure most of these folks are a rough bunch, but who defines "unmanageable?" What if your neighbors just don't like you. Do you really want government telling you where you can live?

Are some of you liberals SURE you want the United States to be like socialist Europe?


Academia: The Intolerance of the Tolerant


From WorldNetDaily:

An independent report on the School of Social Work at Missouri State University says officials there bullied students by creating 'an atmosphere where the Code of Ethics is used in order to coerce students into certain belief systems,' documenting allegations made by a Christian student who was penalized under the system.

What happened?
She refused his assignment to lobby for homosexual adoptions because it violated her religious beliefs, and then was brought up on ethics charges within the program's system. Her lawsuit, handled by The Alliance Defense Fund, was settled quickly by the school with the leave of absence as well as monetary damages and a removal from her record of the charges against her.

While I've encountered a few good social workers, you'll be hard pressed to find a profession more riven with rabid, unyielding liberal dogma than social work.

It's amazing how intolerant these "tolerant" liberals can be.


Global Warming Musicians Creating Their Own Problem


The UK Daily Mail is calling some of the eco-hypocrites on their double standard:

But green campaigners called the stars' involvement hypocritical last night saying their lifestyles which demand they jet themselves and their huge entourages on world tours give them enormously large carbon footprints.

Last year, for example, they report how Madonna flew as many as 100 technicians, dancers, backing singers, managers and family members on a 56-date world tour in private jets and commercial airliners.

Madonna herself also has a collection of fuel-guzzling cars, including a Mercedes Maybach, two Range Rovers, Audi A8s and a Mini Cooper S. Yet she will headline the London concert to 'combat the climate crisis'.
'Madonna's Confessions tour produced 440 tonnes of CO2 in four months of last year. And that was just the flights between the countries, not taking into account the truckloads of equipment needed, the power to stage such a show and the transport of all the thousands of fans getting to the gigs.

'The Red Hot Chili Peppers produced 220 tonnes of CO2 with their private jet alone over six months on their last world tour which was 42 dates.

'The average a British person produces is 10 tonnes a year,' said John Buckley, managing director-of CarbonFootprint.com.

He added: 'It's great for the celebrities to come out and support the cause, but they then have to follow it up in their own lifestyles.

The whole global warming thing is a bunch of hooey anyway, but if they're going to raise a big ruckus about it, they should at least walk the walk.

But just as with Al Gore and the rest of these elites, there's a set of rules for them, and there's another set for "the little people" like you. When are people going to stop listening to this modern-day aristocracy?


Elizabeth Edwards Trashes Her Neighbor


The News & Observer says Elizabeth Edwards, wife of Democrat presidential candidate John Edwards, is trashing her truck-driving, catfish-eating Republican neighbor:

Elizabeth Edwards, they told him, had called him a 'rabid, rabid Republican.' That wasn't all. The Democratic presidential candidate's wife also told The Associated Press she didn't want her children near Johnson because, she said, he once pulled a gun on workers investigating a right of way on his property.

Just more elitism, like a couple of years ago when the Edwards' pretended to eat at McDonalds like us "little people," then went back to their RV for catered lobster.

What's the neighbor's take on his aristocratic neighbors?
In the meantime, Johnson said he doesn't have hard feelings toward Edwards, but he does expect her to say she's sorry.

"I think she owes me an apology," he said. "And I won't feel right until I get it. If this is how they treat people in the White House, America is in for a helluva time."


Cutting Student Nap Time


Hey, now here's somebody who's working to make the most effective use of educational resources. Hats off to Sioux Falls Lincoln High Principal Valerie Fox.

It's a class period set up to give students a chance to catch up or get ahead on homework.... not sleep.

Lincoln High Principal Valerie Fox says, “We have a lot of students just sitting around for an hour maybe not really making good use of that time.”

Apparently someone in the education establishment recognizes that naps, nose-picking and note-passing aren't an effective use of the taxpayers money.

This principal is also making the most of the teacher's abilities:
Fox says another reason they've decided to cut out study hall is because it's so expensive to staff. She'd rather put teachers in the classroom to teach, rather than to watch students do homework or sleep.

Fox also says eliminating study halls will give students the opportunity to take free classes that they enjoy before they have to pay for their education in college.


Education Spending: Where's the Beef?

Okay, I know I'm dating myself with that title, but it popped into my head, and it fits.

Chad at the Clean Cut Kid takes issue with my comments on education funding.

Liberals sure do get upset when you malign the holy temple of public education, don't they? Understandable, I suppose, since that's where the catechism of liberalism is taught.

Most teachers are doing the best they can, with the majority of the public education issues being with the institution itself. Here are some education statistics.

In South Dakota, our student/teacher ratio isn't too bad: 13.6.

In South Dakota, teachers only make up 50.6% of the public elementary and secondary education staff. If you throw in instructional aids, guidance counselors, etc., you can push that up to about 65%, leaving about 35% of the educational staff falling into the administrative/overhead category. That's one overhead position for every three teachers, and one for every 20 students. I know some paper pushers and bean counters are necessary, but that seems a little excessive to me.

South Dakota is spending $4365 per student in 2007. My homeschooled daughter is academically well ahead of her public school peers and we're not spending even close to $4365 a year on her education. Washington DC spends more per student than any municipality in the country, yet has pathetic test scores, so throwing money at education doesn't = better results.

And as important as computer skills are (and I'm no technophobe, with programming skills and computer use going back to the 1980s), spending money on laptops isn't going to prove a magic bullet, either. If students can't read, the pretty pictures on the web pages aren't going to do much for their understanding of the world around them.

Then it should be considered that public schools institutionally (regardless of the beliefs or opinions of those who teach there) marginalize the faith of religious students who attend. It may not be in a direct statement that their faith is irrelevant, but when the institution tries to suppress any student expression of religion (reading a Bible, praying, talking to friends about their faith, etc.), it sends the children of the taxpayers the strong and unmistakable message: "Your faith is something for Sunday morning. It is something private that has no bearing on the real world, and it certainly has no place in an intellectual setting." With this systemic attitude, is it any wonder that the average taxpayer is, at best, a little put off by the education establishment, or at worst, quite offended that their most deeply held beliefs are marginalized?

But on the purely practical side, more money isn't going to automatically result in smarter students. I've said it before and I'll say it again: the public as a whole isn't ready to do what needs to be done to get better academic results. It'll require too much personal effort.

We're going to have to cut out a bunch of the garbage that isn't contributing to learning, and parents are going to have to spend more time preparing their children to learn (i.e. providing a stable home environment, teaching them values and inspiring a desire to achieve). Rather than start taking responsibility at home, it's much easier to just throw someone elses tax money at the problem, ship the kids off to a government institution, and then blame the teachers when they can't work miracles.


Po' Polar Bears

More sympathy over substance, from the UK Telegraph:

The plight of the Alaskan polar bear has attracted an unprecedented response to an environmental issue by the American public.

The US government has received more than 500,000 comments on a recent proposal that it give the bears extra protection from the effects on their environment on suspected global warming.

What's a po' polar bear to do? Here's an idea:


(How polar bears deal with global warming)


8th Circuit Hears Abortion Law


The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals will be hearing Planned Parenthood's challenge to a 2005 South Dakota law that provides information to women seeking an abortion.

From the Rapid City Journal:

Harold Cassidy, attorney for two South Dakota pregnancy help centers that have intervened in the case, said it presents several firsts in abortion jurisprudence.

It’s the first time the federal appeals court will address whether an abortion terminates human life, poses a risk for depression and suicide, and ends what Cassidy describes as a woman’s constitutionally protected relationship to the unborn child.

He said it’s also the first time that pregnancy help centers have pitted themselves against an abortion provider as advocates for women’s rights.

“Planned Parenthood sees itself as the great defender of women’s rights, when one of the greatest secrets is that 3,500 pregnancy centers in the U.S. are helping women” make other choices about their unwanted pregnancy, such as keeping the child or giving it up for adoption, Cassidy said.

Does abortion really end a human life? That's the elephant in the room that Planned Parenthood--and the courts--have always avoided dealing with, all the way back to 1973s Roe v. Wade.

It's time we dealt with the pivotal question of abortion: is it killing a human life?


School Bond Issues Bite the Dust


Two school districts in the Black Hills rejected higher taxes for school yesterday.

From the Rapid City Journal:

Voters in two Black Hills school districts said “No, thank you” to higher taxes Tuesday, rejecting bond issues in the Belle Fourche and Meade school districts.

In the Belle Fourche School District, the bond request fell considerably short of the necessary 60 percent approval it needed. The bond failed 55 percent to 45 percent with 925 “no” votes and 750 “yes” votes.


The Meade School District was making a second attempt at an $8 million bond issue to help finance the building program. At 10 p.m. Tuesday, with all but one Sturgis ward counted, the bond issue was failing 63 percent to 37 percent. Voters had cast 2,465 “no” votes to 1,426 “yes” votes.

Last fall, the same bond issue failed by a 3 percent margin.


Looks like the Meade voters, after last year's vote and this year's vote, said not only no but heck no.

Maybe if the education establishment would try cutting some of the administrative fat and getting some real results, people would be more inclined to throw more money at public education.

But maybe people are starting to realize that smart folks don't just keep throwing money at something that isn't working.


Judge OKs Homosexual School Club

This is the same grounds upon which a Gay-Straight Unity club was formed at Stevens High School in Rapid City about 3 years ago.

From OneNewsNow:

A Christian attorney says the ACLU is once again 'twisting' a federal law that was enacted to allow Bible clubs in public schools.

A Florida judge has allowed a Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) club to meet at Okeechobee High School during the pendency of a lawsuit if the club limits its discussion to discrimination issues. With the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, the club's founder sued the school and its principal asserting that the Equal Access Act requires the GSA be allowed to meet on campus.


The courts have upheld these clubs in the past, but...

The attorney also believes the ACLU is twisting the intent of the Equal Access Act as it employs the law to advocate for homosexual student clubs nationwide.

"What we are arguing is that the Equal Access Act does have some provisions in it where you are allowed to act in the best interests of the child; you are allowed to protect the safety and the welfare of the students. And we believe that having students discussing sexual issues is not in their best interests."


I've often pondered the logic of a school club dealing with a sexual subject when most high schoolers are below the age of legal consent for sexual activity in the first place. Not to mention most of them are even too young to see an R-rated movie...but they can have a club on the subject of two men or two women having sex with each other?


Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Texas: Miracles Do Happen!

It was looking quite bleak for 17-month- old Emilio Gonzales on the morning of Tuesday, April 10, 2007. ( Emilio is suspected of having Leigh's Disease, which is a progressive disease that eventually leads to death.) If a miracle didn't occur, or a judge didn't intercede, he would once again be at the mercy of Brackenridge Children's Hospital of Austin. A hospital and it's so-called ethics committee that had decided to invoke the futile care law in spite of the family's wishes to keep the toddler alive and receiving care.

A hearing was scheduled at the Travis County courthouse on the same day the hospital had set as the deadline for little Emilio to either be transferred or terminated. A day full of intense emotions, no doubt. But then it happened. Probate Judge Guy Herman ordered the hospital to continue treating little Emilio and scheduled a hearing for April 19th to hear the arguments from both sides. A reprieve, which proves it. Miracles do happen and sometimes they actually happen at the hands of judges. This one did!


More Sunspots Than in Last 1,000 Years


From the BBC:

But the most striking feature, he says, is that looking at the past 1,150 years the Sun has never been as active as it has been during the past 60 years.

Over the past few hundred years, there has been a steady increase in the numbers of sunspots, a trend that has accelerated in the past century, just at the time when the Earth has been getting warmer.

The data suggests that changing solar activity is influencing in some way the global climate causing the world to get warmer.

But I'm sure the activity of this star in the middle of our solar system, which is 864,938 miles in diameter, about 333,000 times more massive than the earth, and burns at about 11,000 degrees F has nothing to do with global warming.


Theocrats are at it Again

The theocrats are at it again! The disciples of the religion of secular humanism are pushing their religion on kids in school and suppressing the religious beliefs of these children.

From the York Daily Record:

A mother alleges Wrightsville Elementary School officials discriminated against her daughter when she was told to remove a magnet from her desk because it said, "Smile, Jesus Loves You."

That wasn't all:
In addition to the magnet issue, Lehman said she was also disturbed that a photo of Laurie meant for the yearbook would not be included because she was wearing a shirt that promoted Jesus.

A kids magnet or shirt has nothing to do with Congress [making a] law respecting an establishment of religion, and I don't think any reasonable person would confuse something that belonged to a student with an official position of a school.

There's some wisdom in this comment from the school board vice president:
School board Vice President Richard Zepp said he understood the legal reasons behind the decision to remove the magnets and photos en masse. But he also said that, if Jesus is the biggest threat facing his district, he could be happy with that.


Captured British Soldiers Behavior Called "Disgusting"

From Arutz Sheva:

(IsraelNN.com) The former British captives' behavior while in Iranian hands is coming under sharp criticism inside Britain and outside it, with American war hero Col. Jack Jacobs calling it 'disgusting and disgraceful.' Meanwhile, the British government has given the 15 sailors and marines permission to make a personal profit by selling their stories for publication. The hostages are expected to earn as much as £250,000 between them. Faye Turney, 26, the only female among them, could profit by as much as £150,000 from a joint deal with a newspaper and ITV.


I haven't watched the coverage closely, but what I have seen makes me agree. It seems very unprofessional, and out of character from what I would have expected from the U.S. military...at least when I was in several years ago.


Bush: Will Allow Reserch on "Nonviable" Embryos

I believe this is an acceptable compromise, as long as it doesn't result in something that leads researchers to intentionally make human embryos "nonviable."
From Fox News:

President George W. Bush said Tuesday that he would sign a bill to permit federal funding of research using human embryos that could not develop into fetuses.

At the same time, he said he would again reject a bill that would clear the way for the government to pay for largely unrestricted stem cell research on viable embryos. Bush's only veto in seven years as president was of a similar bill, which would have overturned a restrictive stem cell policy that Bush declared in 2001.

Experimentation on human embryos under most conditions is indefensible, however. Human life begins at conception (it becomes a unique human being with it's own unique DNA at that point), and if we value human life, we need to steer clear of this kind of dubious research.

And it is dubious, in more ways than one. While embryonic stem cell research has yet to produce a single success, adult stem cell therapy, umbilical cord blood stem cell therapy, and other kinds of non-destructive stem cell therapy have already helped dozens of people.


Great Britain Not So Great Anymore

Dennis Prager's column is, as usual, too true:

Whether the British sailors and marines should have put up more resistance – i.e., any resistance – to the unprovoked Iranian military attack is something for military and other experts to decide. Whether the captured sailors and marines offered more information and more cooperation – and more smiles – than was necessary to the leader of their kidnappers, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, will also be determined in ongoing investigations. Whether the British government engaged in appeasement of Iran or ineffective diplomacy will also have to be judged.

What does seem clear, however, is that the British government did not confront the Iranians in any way reminiscent of a great country, let alone of Britain's great past. If we judge the British government's reaction alone – without any reference to the behavior of the British sailors and marines – Iran was the feared power, not Great Britain, which acted like the supplicant.

And the part Americans need to heed?
But a word of caution: If Great Britain can cease to be great in so short a time span, any country can. All you need is an elite that no longer believes in their country, that manipulates history texts to make students feel good about themselves, that prefers multiculturalism to its own culture, and that has abandoned its religious underpinnings. Sound familiar, America?


South Dakota Troops Building Border Fence

From KELO:

President Bush addressed immigration reform on the US-Mexican border Monday. He traveled to Yuma, Arizona where a 700 mile-long fence is being built to keep illegal immigrants out of America. It's a fence some South Dakota National Guard troops are helping build.

More than 50 South Dakota Air National Guard troops spent much of March building the fence between the United States and Mexico. It's a project one airman says seems to be working.


Monday, April 09, 2007

Obama: Running Scared

From NewsMax:

Sen. Barack Obama will not participate in a Democratic presidential debate this fall co-hosted by Fox News Channel, making him the second candidate to snub the cable network.

An Obama aide said the Illinois senator had no plans to attend the Sept. 23 debate in Detroit that Fox agreed to co-sponsor with the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education and Leadership Institute.

Obama will take part in a different debate hosted by the institute and CNN in January.

"CNN seemed like a more appropriate host," Obama spokesman Bill Burton said.

Obama's decision comes three days after former Sen. John Edwards, another Democratic presidential candidate, announced he was pulling out of the Fox-sponsored debate.

Democrats apparently can't handle publicity when it isn't marketed and managed on a liberal network like CNN.


Sunday, April 08, 2007

Why Have Easter?

Why do we celebrate Easter? It isn’t about bunny rabbits and egg hunts. It’s the most holy of Christian holidays because we remember and commemorate the #1 reason Christ came to earth to live as a man: to pay the sin-debt of all humans for all time.

But you have to become a Christian to receive this pardon.

Being a Christian is more than just believing in God; after all, the Bible says even the demons believe in God, and tremble.

It involves going beyond a mere intellectual acknowledgment of God’s existence. Becoming a Christian means putting your complete faith in God: agreeing with God when He says you are a sinner who is worthy of death and eternity in Hell; agreeing with God that even your best efforts to be a good person fall short of His standard; agreeing with God when He says His son Jesus made an acceptable atonement for your sins, on your behalf; agreeing with God that His way is better than your way.

The difference in just believing in God and having the kind of faith that saves you is like looking at a chair and believing it will hold you up, and actually sitting down in the chair expecting it to hold you up. Until you “sit down” on God’s grace, until you trust it to make you right with Him, until you trust it to take care of you in this life and the life to come, you aren’t truly a Christian.

This way is so radical that Jesus called it being “born again.” It really is like being born all over again, because you receive a new nature, one that is connected to God and wants to do the right thing…and is able to do the right thing.

This is what Jesus did around Easter nearly 2,000 years ago. He died the death we deserved to pay the debt we couldn’t pay (we already owed a death for our sins, but He had no sins to die for). And on what we now celebrate as “Easter,” he rose from the dead to show his power over death, and to show that Christians from all time would one day rise from the dead to live with God in the new heaven and new earth.

You can have that assurance of being right with God and having your eternal destiny taken care of, if you’ll only sit down in the chair of God’s grace.


BATS: Does Christianity Have Public Policy Answers?


Blogging Against Theocracy Silliness


One of the key objectives of the "separation of church and state" movement is the marginalization of Christianity. In other words, it seeks to brand Christianity as irrelevant to "real life."

In the last century, Christians as a group have thrown up their hands and surrendered to the secularists. They have signed a treaty with the secularists that created a kind of Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) between Christianity and "the real world." They have adopted a "what's yours is yours, and what's mine is mine" mentality.

Yet this is completely erroneous, and in violation of what God has called those who believe in Him to do. Faith is supposed to speak to EVERY area of life. In fact, if your religion is only good on Sunday morning, then your religion is completely worthless.

On the contrary, Christian theology has answers for practically every area of "real life," in both the personal and the public policy arena. Listed here are just a few of the areas to which Christianity has answers.

And this weekend, I've already presented evidence, for those with eyes to see, that those who founded this nation, who set up its government, believed unequivocally that the Christian faith has answers for government questions, for "real life."

To try and keep God in a box, irrelevant unless you're sitting in a pew on Sunday morning, is not only shortsighted in the denial of the answers to many of life's most pressing problems, it is in direct contravention of what the believer has been instructed to do.

Examining and debating what God, the Creator of the universe and all things within it, in the discussion of public policy just makes good sense--especially for those who claim to believe in Him.

And following the best advice even if it's God's advice, just because the source is "religious" doesn't constitute "Congress [making a] law respecting an establishment of religion." Nor does it constitute a "theocracy."


Homosexual Marriage at Disney

Remember this when you plan your next vacation.

From Breitbart:

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Same-sex couples who want to exchange vows in front of Cinderella's Castle now have the chance.

The Walt Disney Co. had limited its Fairy Tale Wedding program to couples with valid marriage licenses, but it is now making ceremonies at its parks available to gay couples as well.


BATS: Insight on the First Amendment


Blogging Against Theocracy Silliness


In "honor" of "Blogging Against Theocracy," a.k.a. "Marginalizing Christianity on its Most Sacred Holiday", a post on "Insight on the First Amendment."

This information provides some insight on the First Amendment as it deals with religion. Most of the information here is from David Barton’s “Original Intent.”

Did Thomas Jefferson say that religion should have no influence on the state? Not in the least. He did, however, point to the true scope and intention of the First Amendment prohibition preventing CONGRESS from making a law respecting an establishment of religion:

Certainly no power to prescribe any religious exercise or to assume authority in any religious discipline has been delegated to the General [federal] Government. It must then rest with the States. – Thomas Jefferson

From the Annals of Congress from June 8, 1789 to September 25, 1789, containing the records of the discussions of those who drafted and approved the First Amendment:

AUGUST 15, 1789. Mr. Sylvester had some doubts…He feared it [the First Amendment] might be thought to have a tendency to abolish religion altogether…Mr Gerry said it would read better if it was that “no religious doctrine shall be established by law”…Mr. Madison said he apprehended the meaning of the words to be, that “Congress should not establish a religion, and enforce the legal observation of it by law.”

This record gives us some insight as to how the Founders wrestled with the wording of the First Amendment, in the hopes that it wouldn’t be interpreted to “abolish religion altogether” as it is being interpreted by many today.

We are not to attribute this [First Amendment] prohibition of a national religious establishment to an indifference to religion in general, and especially to Christianity (which none could hold in more reverence, than the framers of the Constitution) – Joseph Story

The real object of the [First A]mendment was not to countenance, much less to advance, Mahometanism, or Judaism, or infidelity, by prostrating Christianity; but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects. – Joseph Story

All men have an equal, natural and unalienable right to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that no particular sect or society of Christians ought to be favored or established by law in preference to others. – George Mason

The civil rights of none shall be abridged on account of religious belief or worship, nor shall any national religion be established. – James Madison

The whole power over the subject of religion is left exclusively to the State governments to be acted upon according to their own sense of Justice and the State constitutions. – Joseph Story

The Founders were wise men, typically educated far beyond the eduation of most people today. They were also a people of morality and integrity, I doubt they fully realized what might be done with the Constitution by a people that were no longer educated OR moral, but instead wanted to substitute the wisdom of their own lusts for power and pleasure for that of the original intent.

Regarding that, one final bit on the interpretation of law and the Constitution (this applies to current law, and especially the Constitution.

The first and governing maxim in the interpretation of a statute is to discover the meaning of those who made it. – James Wilson, signer of the Declaration, member of the Constitutional Convention, and nominated by President George Washington as an original Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court

The first and fundamental rule in the interpretation of all instruments is to construe them according to the sense of the sense of the terms and intentions of the parties. – Joseph Story

In other words, if you wrote a letter to someone, would you want them to interpret it as you meant it…or would you want them to interpret it in a “living” sense, based on their perceived needs and their own agenda?

I think we know that answer to that one, so why should the interpretation of the Constitution, our nations’ highest law, be any different? And it is obvious what the Founders intended with the First Amendment: not the exorcism of faith from public policy, but the prevention of an establishment of a national religion.

And no one is advocating a national religion, which probably would be a theocracy, so that’s why all this bunk of “Blogging Against Theocracy” is shadow-boxing at best, but is more likely just a veiled attack on the influence of Christian morality in public policy.


Honoring the Fallen Heroes


This is a good change. Many of our fallen military members have been coming home on commercial flights basically as freight and not receiving the honors they deserve.

Thanks to the efforts of the father of one of our fallen soldiers, that's been changed.

From FoxNews:

Some were met by smartly uniformed military honor guards. But in other cases, the flag-draped caskets were unceremoniously taken off the plane by ordinary ground crew members and handed over to the family at a warehouse in a cargo area.

Now, the military is flying the dead into smaller regional airports closer to their hometowns, so that they can be met by their families and, in some cases, receive community tributes. And the caskets are being borne from the plane by an honor guard.

Last year, the U.S. military spent about $1.2 million to bring home the dead on commercial flights. Switching to charter flights will cost far more: The six-month Kalitta contract is worth up to $11 million.

This will cost considerably more, but it's worth it.

This isn't a handout to do for someone what they should be doing for themselves, or some project to pad a bureaucrat's nest. This is rendering he proper honor to someone who fought and died for this nation, the ideals of this nation, and the people of this nation.


 
Clicky Web Analytics