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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?



Saturday, June 30, 2007

Suspect in the Fatal Shooting of Bowie County (TX) Deputy Found

According to KTEN.com, the suspect Henry Leon Wakefield III was found. Wakefield is suspected of the early morning fatal shooting of Bowie County (TX) Deputy Michael Page who had responded to a reported accident.

A massive manhunt is underway

A massive manhunt is underway
June 30, 2007

A Bowie County Sheriff's Deputy has been shot and killed. A massive manhunt is underway for what the Sheriff's Department calls a person of interest.It began about one this morning when Deputy Michael Page answered a call about a traffic accident on Daniel Chapel road just north of New Boston.The driver of the vehicle fled the scene. Page pursued him when there was, apparently, a confrontation in the woods. That is when Page was shot possibly with his own gun that is still missing. Page was taken to St. Michael's Hospital in Texarkana where he was pronounced dead.

(Full Story)

Gore Challenged to Global Warming Wager

From OneNewsNow, a University of Pennsylvania professor has proposed a bet to global warming high priest Al Gore.

Wharton School marketing professor Scott Armstrong is challenging Al Gore to a ten-year bet on how many degrees the global temperature will increase over that period. Armstrong says he and Gore would both put $10,000 into a charitable trust in December, and ten years later the money would go to the winner's charity of choice.

Rush Limbaugh proposed a betting pool on global warming on Monday:
Now, you might have to wait 20 years for payoff. It's one of the smart things these people have done, "Well, 2050 New York City could be under water, 2050 Greenland could melt." The point is they would not put their money where their mouth is. None of these global warming activists, none of these scientists would do it. I don't know what it takes to get a betting line on these sites, but boy, it would be cool if we could do it.

You'd have to wait a while for the payoff, but that would be some easy money.

Hillary: 52% Say No Way

From the Contra Costa Times:

More than half of Americans say they wouldn't consider voting for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton for president if she becomes the Democratic nominee, according to a new national poll made available to McClatchy Newspapers and NBC News.

This isn't the first time we've seen poll results like this. I recall one around a year ago that was more than 50% negative. And I don't think I've ever seen her negatives fall below 40%.

South Dakotans Tune In More Than Log On

The Argus Leader cites a Dakota Wesleyan University poll that found South Dakotans rely on more traditional avenues for news, rather than the internet:

South Dakotans look to traditional sources for their news at a far greater rate than Americans in general, a new study from Dakota Wesleyan University shows.

DWU polled 410 South Dakotans and found that the vast majority use television, radio and newspapers instead of the Internet.

Only 11 percent of South Dakotans said they had used the Internet for news in the past 24 hours. Other polls, such as one conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2005, said 24 percent of Americans use the Internet as a main source of news.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Health Care and Rights

Michael F. Cannon has a very thought-provoking piece at National Review Online today called A “Right” to Health Care?

Some of the problems with socialized medicine that Cannon identifies are ones we're already familiar with, but here are some others that don't get as much press:

A third difficulty is the incentives created by a right to health care. Patients would demand far more medical care because additional consumption would cost them little. Higher tax rates would discourage work and productivity, yielding less economic growth and wealth.

Pushing down the compensation of medical professionals would discourage many — and many of the brightest — from entering the field of medicine. Divorcing their compensation from the satisfaction of their patients would reduce the quality of care.

As in other nations, policymakers would discourage medical innovation because every new discovery puts them in the uncomfortable position of either increasing taxes or saying “no” to patients.

The paradox of a right to health care is that it discourages the very activities that help deliver on that right.

We have already seen some of these effects in countries with socialized medicine.

Not to diminish the practical considerations of socialized medicine, consider the very principle of a health care "right." A right to access is one thing; a right to that service itself without cost is fundamentally at odds with our Constitution and the American way.

This is something I examined in a Rapid City Journal column on a "right" to education a while back:
Rights are usually good things, but what does a “right” look like? Typically, a “right” doesn’t cost another person anything. For instance, you have a right to free speech, but you don’t have a right to force taxpayers to buy you a newspaper or TV station to broadcast your speech.

You have the right to keep and bear arms, but you don’t have the right to force the taxpayers to buy you a gun or pay for your shooting lessons.

Or as Cannon puts it:
The fundamental problem with the idea of a right to health care is that it turns the idea of individual rights on its head. Individual rights don’t infringe on the rights of others. Smith’s right to free speech takes nothing away from Jones. The only obligation Jones owes to Smith is not to interfere with Smith’s exercise of her rights.

A right to health care, however, says that Smith has a right to Jones’ labor. That turns the concept of individual rights from a shield into a sword.

I would add one further example, that everyone has a "right" to have access to food, but no one has the right to free food.

Any argument that might justify "free" food or "free" health care--which of course come at taxpayer expense--is a steep slippery slope down the path to total state control and minimal individual freedom.

Please read the whole article; it contains far more points worthy of consideration than I could appropriately copy here.

HT to the National Center for Policy Analysis.

Americans are Very Charitable

Americans last year broke the previous 2005 record of giving (that was the year of the Katrina disaster and the tsunami in Asia).
From YNet:

About 65 percent of households with incomes less than $100,000 give to charity, the report showed.

"It tells you something about American culture that is unlike any other country," said Claire Gaudiani, a professor at NYU's Heyman Center for Philanthropy and author of "The Greater Good: How Philanthropy Drives the American Economy and Can Save Capitalism."

He said Americans give twice as much as the next most charitable country, according to a November 2006 comparison done by the Charities Aid Foundation. In philanthropic giving as a percentage of gross domestic product, the US ranked first at 1.7 percent. No 2 Britain gave 0.73 percent, while France, with a 0.14 percent rate, trailed such countries as South Africa, Singapore, Turkey and Germany.

Fairness Doctrine Bites the Dust

From The Hill:

By a vote of 309-115, lawmakers amended the Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill to bar the FCC from requiring broadcasters to balance conservative content with liberal programming such as Air America.

Our Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin got it right, voting for the amendment.

Update: The Coats/Hanks Connection?

Following up on the fake press release I received Wednesday afternoon, some investigation and conversations I've had over the last couple of days are pointing to some interesting things.

I'm still waiting on some people to get back to me, and have at least one more person I need to make contact with, but the evidence is pointing toward a conclusion that while what I received was NOT a press release from Michael Coats, there might have been considerably more than a grain of truth to what was said in the communique.

Hopefully I'll have more to report soon.

The Top Ten Movies of All Time

By John W. Whitehead

Be ye warned: the American Film Institute has just named its top 100 movies of all time. And while the list is not all that bad, AFI’s top ten movies present a problem.

All fine movies—Citizen Kane, The Godfather, Casablanca, Raging Bull, Singing in the Rain, Gone with the Wind, Lawrence of Arabia, Schindler’s List, Vertigo and The Wizard of Oz—AFI’s top ten list tends to read more like a politically correct movie guide. (Full Story)

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Plurality Believe 3rd Party Win in 2008 Good for U.S.

Constitution Party folks, fire up your election machine! According to Fox News, their latest poll shows nearly half of all Americans think it would be good for the country if a third party candidate won the White House in 2008.

More than twice as many voters think it would be good for the country if an independent candidate were to win the White House in 2008 than think it would be bad (45 percent good, 19 percent bad). In addition, there is rare partisan agreement on the issue as 42 percent of Democrats and 44 percent of Republicans think electing an independent candidate would be good for the country, as do 56 percent of self-described independents.

If Republicans keep behaving like a bunch of idiots, a conservative third party might actually have a shot at the presidency.

I've aways said that if people are given a choice of an imitation or the genuine article for the same price, they'll go with the genuine article every time. With the national Republicans acting like Democrat-lite, I don't think they can expect much support beyond the country-clubbers.

Rationing "Free" Health Care

The British are finally starting to acknowledge in the light of day the massive problems their National Health Service (NHS) aka "free health care" has.

From the Scotsman:

"Rationing is reduction in choice. Rationing has become a necessary evil. We need to formalise rationing to prevent an unregulated, widening, postcode-lottery of care. Government no longer has a choice." - ALEX SMALLWOOD, BMA

You also have a situation of medical procedure haves and have-nots...in a "free" health care system where everyone is supposed to be on an equal footing.
Patients have voiced anger that new, but expensive, treatments are denied them on the NHS.

In some cases they are available in Scotland, while patients in England go without.

"It is no longer possible to provide all the latest to absolutely everybody without notable detriment to others," he said.

The National Center for Policy Analysis also points out, referencing a piece in the Wall Street Journal called "Who's Really 'Sicko'" by David Gratzer, that Michael Moore's "Sicko" doesn't hold up too well when compared to reality:
Consider the claim that emergency rooms don't overcrowd in Canada; while people in rural areas may fare better, Toronto patients receive care in four hours on average; one in 10 patients waits more than a dozen hours.

In Britain, the Department of Health recently acknowledged that 1 in 8 patients wait more than a year for surgery.

France's system failed so spectacularly in the summer heat of 2003 that 13,000 people died, largely of dehydration; hospitals stopped answering the phones and ambulance attendants told people to fend for themselves.

The article also says that in Britain, even the Labor Party (the liberal party) is looking to privatize their system. Sweden, Slovakia and Germany are also looking at privatization.

As if we didn't already have enough evidence, we should learn from the mistakes of other countries that have tried socialized medicine...and run as far as possible from it in this country.

Amnesty Bill Down in Flames...Again

From MyWay News:

The Senate drove a stake Thursday through President Bush's plan to legalize millions of unlawful immigrants, likely postponing major action on immigration until after the 2008 elections.

The bill's supporters fell 14 votes short of the 60 needed to limit debate and clear the way for final passage of the legislation, which critics assailed as offering amnesty to illegal immigrants. The vote was 46 to 53 in favor of limiting the debate.

Reports are that the Senate switchboard was shut down due to the huge number of calls coming in on this. Most Americans apparently recognize how important the border and the rule of law is.

You might have heard Senator George Voinovich (R-OH) melt down on Sean Hannity's radio show yesterday afternoon when Hannity boxed him in with uncomfortable questions. I listened to most of it, and you could tell Voinovich knew he was sucking wind and looking for a way out...but there was none. So he finally hung up. He hadn't read the amnesty bill, didn't have a grasp on the problem, and wasn't willing to uphold law and order.

Click here for the vote breakdown.

The Jesse Ramirez Miracle

By Carrie K. Hutchens

News reports state that on May 30th, Jesse Ramirez and his wife Rebecca were traveling in their SUV, in the midst of an argument, when he lost control of the SUV and had a rollover crash. Both occupants were ejected from the vehicle. Jesse, 36, reportedly suffered critical injuries, which include a broken neck and head injuries, while Rebecca, 33, suffered only minor injuries.

It appears that around a week after the accident, Jesse underwent surgery, only to be transferred to a hospice the following day with orders to have his feeding tube removed. Who made the decision to transfer him and end his life? Rebecca Ramirez, the woman with whom he was having marital problems even as they crashed. (Full Story)

Fighting the Fairness Doctrine

As you may have heard, Democrats in Congress aren't satisfied with having the vast majority of the media acting as their mouth piece. ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the LA Times, et. al. just aren't enough propaganda arms to really get their liberal message out there. No, they need to muzzle talk radio, now (since they've realized they can't make in an industry where listeners think, as the Air America debacle shows). So they want to bring back the "Fairness Doctrine" which says you have to give equal time to all points of view in a broadcast (again, ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the LA Times just don't add up to Rush Limbaugh). It's really an attempt to try and neuter or nullify what conservatives have to say.

But Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) is working to block the "Fairness Doctrine" (sounds like those communist jokes like "The People's Democratic This" or the "Peace Loving Peoples of..." that, or the Soviet propaganda paper "Pravda", pravda meaning "truth").

From CNS News:

Pence's proposal, which he is calling the Broadcaster Freedom Act, would not only block the return of the regulation, but legally prohibit the FCC or any future president from reinstating it.

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council says,
"In fact, in the larger media world including broadcast TV, public broadcasting, and print, the left predominates. The challenge for them is getting people to listen," he said. "To seek parity in talk radio by restraining the freedom of others is neither free, nor equal, nor fair."

So sad that liberal ideas can't compete in a free, fair thinking arena, and they feel they must resort to regulating that with which they disagree.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

A History of Climate Change

Bruce Bartlett's latest column discusses some of the documentary evidence that climate change has been going on for millennia, even back into the B.C. era. Here is just one example:

Plato’s student, Aristotle, who lived from 384 BC to 322 BC, also recorded evidence of global warming in his work, “Meteorologica.” He noted that in the time of the Trojan War, the land of Argos was marshy and unarable, while that of Mycenae was temperate and fertile. “But now the opposite is the case,” Aristotle wrote. “The land of Mycenae has become completely dry and barren, while the Argive land that was formerly barren, owing to the water has now become fruitful.” He observed the same phenomenon elsewhere covering large regions and nations.

The hysterical calls from Al Gore and others for us to "do something" about "global warming" aren't based on sound science. At best, they've taken particular notice of a meteorological phenomenon and because of their ideological bent against business, capitalism and the West in general, believe mankind is destroying their precious Gaia.

Even if "global warming" is actually occurring, it's not only pretentious to believe that we could be causing it, the theory of an anthropogenic cause is gravely undermined by the evidence that points to natural climate change over time.

Homosexual Community Elected Hanks?

I just received an interesting email through the Dakota Voice press release email account. It was from timdrew@veryspeedy.net (is this the same Tim Drew that took issue with me and other Right "wingnuts" in a recent letter to the editor of the Rapid City Journal?)

For Immediate Release
June 27, 2007

Shortly after election results came in, we received a call this evening from Stan Adelstein thanking the Rapid City GLBT community for the help and support everyone gave to Alan Hanks and the Moderate Coalition in this election. Adelstein confirms we were key to the victory. He was ecstatic about this victory and his praise for all the work everyone did.

I personally want to thank all those who helped to make phone calls, put up signs, helped with the poll watching and making get out the vote phone calls. I especially want to thank everyone who got out and voted.
It was the difference.

We have people in positions of power who now know the power of our community and are showing their appreciation for it. There are good things to come. The GLBT community was among the big winners today.

Once again, on behalf of myself, Senator Adelstein, Senator Katus and Mayor Elect Hanks, thank you all.

Contact: Mike Coats, Director
The Center West
3601 Canyon Lake Dr
Rapid City, SD 57702
The Center - http://lgbtcommunitycenter.org

I started to post this hastily this evening almost on my way out the door to an appointment, but then thought better of it and pulled it. It came through an avenue from which I normally receive trusted information, and I was in a hurry and got sloppy, for which I apologize. I know better than that, and normally DO better than that, but I let myself be seduced by haste.

After I finished my appointments tonight I contacted Michael Coats and he confirmed my suspicions: this is a fake PR and someone is likely trying to cause problems for everyone concerned.

Though this "Tim Drew" in the Journal took issue with both Coats and I, he seemed to have more disagreement with me, so I didn't consider it beyond the pale that he might be aligned with Coats and thus have access to such a PR. I also know that Coats had previously expressed a particular interest in the mayoral race.

Coats told me tonight he has a pretty good idea who sent out this PR; apparently it went out to various media outlets today. He said that none of it is true and he disavows all the sentiments expressed in it. He said he'll let me know what he finds out, and I'll be doing some digging on my end too, so will follow up when I have more.

Things just keep getting curiouser and curiouser...

Senator Johnson: Tax Illegals

From Badlands Blue, the South Dakota Democratic Party blog, a statement from Senator Tim Johnson on his support for the amnesty bill:

There are an estimated 13 million illegal immigrants inside the United States and reasonable reforms are necessary to bring them out of the shadows so they can be taxed and better contribute to our nation as a whole.

Is that a key reason some Democrats have for immigration reform? "So they can be taxed?"

Adelstein's Politics of Destruction

The Rapid City Weekly News has an enlightening article about the Rapid City mayoral election last night:

Former state Sen. Stan Adelstein was at the courthouse Tuesday night, examining numbers, working his cell phone and chatting with people. Adelstein said “hard data” obtained through polling showed the need to go after Kooiker.

“Poor Alan, he wasn’t comfortable with what we had to do,” he said. “But we had to do it.”

Hanks stopped on his way into the courthouse to greet Adelstein. “I want to give this guy a big hug,” he said.

Adelstein said state Sen. Bill Napoli, a major Kooiker supporter whom he has feuded with for years, is the next target of his moderate coalition of Republicans and Democrats. “Now it’s Napoli’s turn to go down,” Adelstein said.

Observation #1: If "poor Alan" was so uncomfortable with Adelstein's dirty politics, why is he giving "big hug[s]" to him?

Observation #2: If the polling showed they "needed to go after Kooiker," they could have done so on a legitimate number of issues, such as qualifications, experience, Kooiker's votes on city issues, etc. Instead, they chose to ridicule Kooiker as an ideological extremist and religious nut...for a position which has little or no ideological overtones or opportunities. It appears ideology is inescapable for Adelstein and his cronies, and lowdown personal politics is the modus operandi.

Observation #3: Yet again we see from the "mainstream" media that there is no such thing as liberals, only "moderates" as Adelstein's coalition of liberal Republicans and Democrats is referred to.

Observation #4: Adelstein's swipe at Bill Napoli goes to prove Observation #2, in that it's all about destruction for Adelstein. He can't even peacefully enjoy the victory of one of his friends, without plotting the political destruction of his next target. How sad it must be to live to destroy.

Something else I noticed from this article. Remember the stink when Pennington County Auditor Julie Pearson moved a voting precinct from Open Bible Christian Center at the last minute, even though their political issue signs were outside the buffer zone specified by the law? And Bill Napoli, who represents the district in which this happened, protested this and got in a feud with Pearson over it?

Maybe I'm wrong, but I would have thought a county auditor should be nonpartisan, especially given their political and electoral responsibilities. Yet look at this screen clip from the RC Weekly News article:

I would have thought professionalism if nothing else would have prevented such an action and display by an official who shouldn't be showing favoritism. Since this was a city election, perhaps she didn't have any official involvement in the Rapid City election, even though Rapid City is in Pennington County. I don't know. Even if she had no official involvement in the election, it gives the impression that she as an official might be endorsing one candidate over another.

But given that Hanks is Adelstein's man, and Napoli is Adelstein's target, and Pearson pulled the rug out from under Napoli's constituents in the last election, the whole collection of dots makes me wonder.

HT to the ever vigilant South Dakota War College.

Idiots in Charge of Immigration

According to Breitbart.com, a Republican amendment requiring illegal aliens to go home before they could apply for legal status in the United States was defeated.

The Senate on Wednesday killed a Republican proposal to require all adult illegal immigrants to return home temporarily in order to qualify for permanent lawful status in this country.

Surprisingly, I don't feel bad about the defeat of this amendment. It was stupid of Republicans to forward it.

Does anyone really think illegals are going to go home before applying for legal status? Most of them came here with just the shirt on their backs and are getting paid a pittance, and couldn't afford to pay any fees and/or go back home...even if they wanted to. Anyone who thinks they would is either woefully ignorant, or disingenuous.

A Washington Times article about an "amnesty documents" forgery ring that was busted shows how naive Congress is in piddling around with all these half-measures:
Julio Leija-Sanchez, who ran a $3 million-a-year forgery operation before he was arrested in April, was expecting Congress to pass a legalization program, which he called "amnesty," and said he could forge documents to fool the U.S. government into believing illegal aliens were in the country in time to qualify for amnesty, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent said in the affidavit.

The solution is really simple, but it "eludes" these people who are blinded by their connections to special interests, whether those interests include Democrats looking for more "victim voters" or Republicans listening to businesses that like having a cheap labor pool.

That solution is to lock down the border, deport every illegal alien we can find, and maintain those actions while pursuing some sane immigration procedures.

South Dakota Emergency Room Wait is "Short"

It's a dubious honor, but KELO points out that South Dakota has the third shortest emergency room wait times: 2 hours, 28 minutes.

Iowa has the shortest at 2:18. Or you could try Arizona at nearly five hours.

Just don't screw it up even worse, Zaniya Project. About 20 years ago when I lived in England, I got food poisoning and sat in an emergency room for 2 hours or more retching into a garbage can before I got to see a doctor. You'd think food poisoning would be a priority ailment.

Socialized medicine blows chunks...literally.

Downhill from the Great Depression

Following in the subject of which I posted yesterday, that FDR wasn't the economic savior that dominant history says he was, Ben Shapiro writes today on "The big lie about the Great Depression."

He references Amity Shlaes new book "The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression":

This, as Shlaes convincingly shows, is hogwash. The Depression lasted nearly a decade longer than it should have, due almost entirely to governmental meddling under both Herbert Hoover and FDR. High tariffs and government-sponsored deflation followed by enormous taxation and unthinkable government expenditures turned a stock market stumble into a decade-long nightmare. Only the devastation of World War II lifted America out of the mire, solving the drastic unemployment problem and providing a legitimate medium for FDR's pre-war wartime policies.

My folks, who came through the Depression as dirt-poor farmers, worshipped FDR as some kind of demi-god like most people, even though they believed in self-reliance in the face of adversity. That was what the intelligentsia told them they should do, and back then, average people still had faith that their leaders were basically decent people like themselves. It was hard for them to fathom that a national leader might intentionally subvert the United States Constitution. They also couldn't conceive of how his give-away programs might have actually made the Depression worse.

I searched my bookshelves last night for a couple of books I've read several years ago that goes into this in more detail, but couldn't find them. My book collection has years ago overgrown my book shelves, and they are certainly somewhere buried in the bowels of this house.

But I did find a book I read just a couple of years ago by the late Chief Justice William Rehnquist called "The Supreme Court." It's a history of the Supreme Court written by Rehnquist, somewhat in biographical format covering each of the chief justices who have shaped the court.

Rehnquist points out that FDR and his Democrat cohorts in Congress were passing many laws for their New Deal (aka the Raw Deal) that were blatantly unconstitutional. In fact, the Court's ruling against FDR and the Frazier-Lemke Act was one of the decisions that led FDR to try packing the court with socialist stooges like himself that would rubber stamp his New Deal whether its provisions were constitutional or not. Having 12 years in the White House helped him to do this.

FDR and the New Deal is where Big Government truly came to life in free America. It's where socialism got its foothold in our free country. It's where America began to move away from a Constitutional government of the people to one of government authority and oligarchy. And its where America began to move away from depending on God to depending on government, from a Christian nation to a secular one.

There are many reasons--big reasons--why the Founders wrote so much about the perils and evils of government, and so little about business (and yes, there were big businesses back then, too). I won't list them here, but go back and read the writings of the Founders: you'll find that over and over again, they warned of the damage government can do when unrestrained. That is why they set up the free and limited government they did, with a system of checks and balances to help keep a leash on government. Even then, they knew that our form of government, as good as it is, depends on an informed and active citizenry, and certainly a moral citizenry, to stay healthy and in check.

Business may commit immoral acts and business may abuse its power. But government has authority over even business, making it the ultimate power in the land. And when government takes a notion to hammer you, you have no higher authority--except God through prayer--to appeal to.

That is why government above all other organizations must be restrained.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Hanks is New Rapid City Mayor

The Rapid City Journal is reporting that Hanks defeated Kooiker in the Rapid City mayoral race 53.4% to 46.6%. It was running with Kooiker ahead or pretty tight until the last four precincts.

I think both candidates had different but positive assets to bring to the office. It's a pity Hanks and some of his supporters felt they had to resort to the negative garbage.

Unfortunately, I think that will mar his term as mayor, unless he finds some way to make amends or otherwise overcome it. It'll also leave a "muddy" taste in the mouths of 46.6% of Rapid City voters, too--something we don't need after the immature behavior from some in city hall over the last year or so.

Giving Thanks for Freedom

We have it so good in America, sometimes we fail to appreciate things that we have (for now) like free speech.

A pastor in Germany has been sentenced to a year in jail for the "crime" of comparing abortion to the Nazi holocaust.

Pastor Johannes Lerle compared the annual murder of 150,000 babies through abortion in Germany to the murder of thousands of innocent Jews in Auschwitz. The court, which consisted of no jury and a single judge, ruled that this statement made Lerle a holocaust denier.

I wonder if the disingenuous Judge Erda Erdenhofner realizes it's illogical to brand Pastor Lerle of being a holocaust denier when his statement was intended to add weight to his opposition to abortion by pointing out how horrible the holocaust was. By her logic, she's claiming Pastor Lerle said that abortion didn't exist because the Jewish holocaust didn't exist. But then, logic is optional for totalitarians.

This "career criminal" pastor has had other brushes with "the law" before
He was formerly imprisoned for calling abortionists and their aides “child murderers.”

And Pastor Lerle isn't the only one guilty of the crime of speaking politically incorrect truths:
German pro-life advocate G√ľnter Annen, for example, was reported by the Journal as having called for an end to “unjust abortions” in 2005. She received a 50-day jail sentence on the grounds that her claim that abortion is “unjust” is legally inaccurate. The courts decided that her words wrongly implied that abortion is illegal in Germany.

Authorities must not know or care that there is, unfortunately, often a difference between what is moral and what is legal.

Thank God that "hate crime" proponents and other idea-enforcers haven't yet stripped us of the freedom to speak the truth in the United States.

South Dakota Wind Farm Coming Next Year

According to KELO, a wind farm will be going up in east central South Dakota next year:

The turbines would be located on about 93 acres dispersed through 25 sections of land. The electricity produced will be fed to the Western Area Power Administration grid.

Immigration Reform: Security First

The National Center for Policy Analysis spotlights an Opinion Journal piece by Pete Du Pont about the immigration issue aptly titled "Security First."

Some of the essential actions he points out:

Build the additional 600 miles of border fencing authorized by the 2006 law; we must also add better surveillance technology and more border security agents.

Make sure the bill contains the provisions of the Isakson Rule that no other immigration reform programs can be implemented until the border is secure.

Require tamper-proof ID cards of all immigrants; today there are no such cards and verifiable identification is essential to both immigration policy and national security
For the lawbreakers already here, this is what he proposes:
Illegals would have to apply for a Z visa (temporary legal status) by admitting they have broken the law, pay an initial $1,000 fine and submit to a background check (those with criminal records would be ineligible).

They would still not then be eligible for welfare benefits or food stamps, and if they wanted a green card and permanent legal status, they would have to pay an additional $4,000 fine, learn English, and then return to their home countries to file for it.

Since I doubt many would be able to fork over this much dough, that still means we should be prepared to deport most of them. Since they invaded our country and broke our laws, I don't have a problem with that.

For a nation that can go from backwater colony to world power in less than 200 years, for a nation that can join Atlantic and Pacific oceans with a canal, for a nation that can carve its heritage into a mountainside, for a nation that can wire the planet, for a nation that can send men to the moon and probes beyond our solar system, deporting most of the illegal aliens in this country shouldn't be insurmountable, if we set our minds to it.

Kleptomaniacs: Born That Way

Don Wildmon speaks up today at OneNewsNow for persecuted kleptomaniacs:

Kleptomaniacs are persecuted for behavior they can't help. It is time for the American Psychological Association to declare that being a kleptomaniac is a normal lifestyle. Society's hateful, mean, and bigoted attitude toward kleptomaniacs is a reflection of narrow-minded ignorance.

Kleptomaniacs are denied the freedom to live their lives as God made them, simply because of a misinterpretation of the Bible by a handful of ignorant "fundamentalist" preachers preaching a worn-out message of hate. Although one of the Ten Commandments says we should not steal, that commandment is clearly meant for the majority of us who are not created as kleptomaniacs.

Since homosexuals have made similar arguments, Wildmon suspects they will rush to the aid of persecuted kleptomaniacs, helping them obtain the rights and respect they deserve.

FDR Policies Hurt the Economy

The National Center for Policy Analysis examins an article by Amity Shlaes called "The Real Deal" (it's at the WSJ Opinion Journal but subscribers only).

Though it's considered heresy, Shlaes points out what I've read before: instead of helping America out of the Great Depression as FDR is given credit for, he actually extended the economic malaise.

The NCPA piece doesn't go into any great detail, as I've read from other sources, but does point out some of the hairbrained ideas that came out of the socialist FDR administration.

Other sources I've read, including Larry Burkett, say it was the massive production engine we set in motion to fight WWII that brought the nation out of the Great Depression.

That is in keeping with every other example we've seen of socialism: it's incapable of lifting people up; it can only bring others down, and spreads the misery around a little more equally.

AG Long Requesting Poll on Abortion Ban Vote

According to KXMB in Bismark, South Dakota Attorney General Larry Long wants a USD group to conduct a poll in connection with the state's case against Rep. Roger Hunt and the anonymous donation in support of last year's abortion ban.

How does a poll have any bearing on the case you ask?

Long says the survey is needed because some court rulings have said a key question is whether the public believes the information sought to be disclosed would play a part in how they vote on a ballot issue.

Additional Thoughts on Cabela's/Visitor Center Issue

Some additional comments I didn't have room for in my Rapid City Journal column on the deal to put the Black Hills Visitor Information Center inside Rapid City's upcoming Cabela's store:

When I visited the BHVIC recently, as I walked in, I was looking for those needed repairs I read about in the news. I didn't see any. While talking with Black Hills, Badlands & Lakes Association president Bill Honerkamp, I asked him about the repairs. He asked me if I'd come in the front and I told him I had. He said I had walked right by them.

He took me out front and showed me that they had put big flower pots right over the biggest crack in the sidewalk that came straight up to the door. They completely covered up this crack and looked as if they belonged there. There was another diagonal crack on the other side of the flower pots, where one might naturally walk as you come out of the VIC, but it shouldn't be a big deal to fix it. There was also a loose panel in the metal roofing of the facility, but that too could be fixed without major trouble.

Inside the center, there are several large displays that have pictures of local historical figures, both white and Native American. There are samples of various things from around the Black Hills, and tons of pictures.

One of the main features is the big table-like 3D display of the Black Hills; see the BHVIC website for a pic of it and some others of the facility. This display table has interactive buttons that light up some of the major peaks of the Black Hills and other things. It's very impressive and gives a great perspective of the layout of the Hills and all the lakes, sites and things you can find. Unfortunately, Honerkamp doubts they'll have room for the $40,000+ display table, and probably not several of their other display kiosks.

They also have a small theater where people can come in and watch a video on the Black Hills which plays in a loop. There won't be room for that in the proposed Cabela's facility either; they'd be going from 12,500 sq. ft in their current facility to 5,000 at Cabela's.

Bill was very professional about the whole thing, but you could tell he was disappointed at all they would be giving up to move into Cabela's.

I also asked him about why the current VIC is so far off the interstate (you can see it, but driving by at 70 MPH it's hardly going to catch your eye). Apparently the DOT was planning a "diamond exchange" for that exit (Elk Vale Rd) when the VIC was built, and as proposed, their entrance would have been right where you got off the offramp. However, DOT switched to an "urban exchange" idea, which leaves the VIC a bit back from the road. Not much they can do about that now, but they're working with it pretty good.

There was also some buckled pavement around the back side of the VIC that Bill told me about but we didn't go around and look at it.

As I said in my column, it's been reported that local contractors have volunteered to do these repairs to this nine-year-old $4.5 million dollar building at-cost for about $11,000. Maybe it's just me, but I think the city would be walking away from far too much money and resources at the current facility to move it to Cabela's.

Just wanted to provide some additional important details about what I'd learned, that I didn't have room for in my column.

What happened in Overland Park could happen anywhere in South Dakota

By Gordon Garnos

AT ISSUE: It has been about three weeks since the kidnapping and murder of 18-year-old Kelsey Smith in Overland Park, Kan., a suburb of Kansas City. Security cameras at a Target store entrance and parking lot filmed her abduction and her abductor. Her body was later discovered and the alleged person who kidnapped and killed her is now behind prison bars awaiting trial. Overland Park is a long way from South Dakota, but what happened there could happen in any community in South Dakota. (Full Story)

We Are All Potentially Enemy Combatants

By John W. Whitehead

The fabric of our nation is unraveling, and our freedoms are hanging by a thread.

In a world where the president has the power to label anyone, whether a citizen or permanent resident, an enemy combatant and detain that person indefinitely without trial, no liberty exists and everyone is potentially an “enemy combatant.” (Full Story)

SDWC Traces Negative Ad to Hanks Campaign

According to the latest from the South Dakota War College, that negative ad calling Rapid City mayoral candidate Sam Kooiker a right-wing nut has been traced back to the address of property owned by Alan Hanks' campaign treasurer John Herr.

Hanks and Kooiker have personally managed to keep their images clean during this campaign, but it looks like that has changed literally on the eve of the runoff election for mayor of Rapid City.

Go see what SDWC has.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Rapid City Mayoral Race Gets Dirty

Ever at the vanguard, the South Dakota War College has a post about and a scan of a pretty lowdown flier that went out against Sam Kooiker today.

The particularly disappointing thing is, the mayor of Rapid City isn't in a position to do anything about most politically partisan issues. Abortion, sex education, minimum wage, church/state issues...mayors don't really deal with this kind of stuff.

And though I have a reputation of being one of the most despicable right-wing nuts, and I have to confess: I've not heard anything about this "religious right's get-out-the-vote machinery." (Why didn't I get the memo? Who left me off the list?) I also missed that whisper campaign memo, too. I knew Hanks voted against the abortion ban, but I haven't heard a single one of my right-wing religious nut friends mention this fact, even in personal, private conversations.

I also don't know of any "far right political websites" clamoring for Kooiker or "trashing his opponent." Dakota Voice is running a paid ad for Kooiker, as is the South Dakota War College and Dakota Today (I don't think you could call Dakota Today a "far right" website by any stretch). If Hanks wanted to run an ad here, I'd certainly take his money and run it.

But I don't think I've ever endorsed Kooiker or said anything negative about Hanks. Some other people who can't seem to keep from interjecting themselves into everything political:yes, I've had plenty to say about some of them, but not Hanks.

From what little I know of Kooiker, he is a Christian and a serious one. But I don't know of him every being outspoken about his faith. Other people seem to want to make a big deal about his faith, though.

I've seen people that normally come down on both the Left and the Right endorsing both candidates. Why do you think that is? It's because the mayor's position isn't some big ideological office. It's more of an administrator position.

To me, this looks like just another classic playbook often employed by some Leftist ideologues (and yes, some of them are in the Republican Party, too): do something, in this case something unnecessarily divisive and partisan, and blame the other side for having done what you just did.

Video Tells Businesses How to Skirt Immigration Law

Here's the other side of the illegal immigration problem. It isn't just bleeding-heart liberals who are trying to subvert our laws, but some greedy businesses that would rather bring in a foreigner for a job so they can pay them less than an American.

The San Francisco Chronicle has a story about a video that shows businesses how to "get around" the law in this regard:

Siding with the displaced Americans, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, wrote Chao Thursday after seeing a five-minute video in which the marketing director of a Pittsburgh law firm is shown telling employers how they can advertise a job so as to appear that the only qualified applicant is a foreign national.

"Our goal is clearly not to find a qualified and interested U.S. worker," says Lawrence Lebowitz of the Cohen & Grigsby law firm during a seminar taped in May. "In a sense it sounds funny, but that's what we're trying to do here."

Here's how they're doing it:
H-1B program opponent Ron Hira, a professor of public policy at Rochester Institute of Technology, said that in one respect, the flap is a misunderstanding because the seminar was aimed at companies that are sponsoring foreign workers for green cards rather than for temporary H-1B visas.

But, said Hira, by showing how to get around the tough requirements that exist -- on paper -- to ensure that green card applicants don't displace Americans, the video suggests how easy it must be for employers to hire foreign workers under the H-1B program, which has far weaker protections against job displacement.

These companies are putting their greed ahead of the national good.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Babes for Fred Thompson

I haven't made my mind up about Fred Thompson yet, but the Times Online has an article about the "legions of former girlfriends who still adore him and who want him to be president."

The Hollywood actor and former Tennessee senator racked up an impressive list of conquests during his swinging bachelor days in the 1990s, but he appears to have achieved the impossible and kept their friendship and respect.

Wow! Any man who can have not just one or two ex-girlfriends that don't hate his guts has to be doing something right!

If he can manage such a feat in his personal life, imagine what he could do for world peace!

Body ID'd As Missing Mom, Officer Arrested

clock Jun 24, 2007 2:36 pm US/Eastern

Body ID'd As Missing Mom, Officer Arrested

Pregnant Woman Had Disappeared June 15; Police Officer-Boyfriend To Be Arraigned For Murder

(CBS News) CANTON, Ohio A medical examiner says the body of a nine-months pregnant woman found Saturday has been positively identified as Jessie Marie Davis, the 26-year-old mother who has been missing since June 15.

The cause of death has not yet been determined, pending further investigation, said Lisa Kohler, the Summit County medical examiner.

(Complete article from cbs4.com)

Prayers go out to the family of this young woman and to the families of all other victims!

Gearing up for Execution

As South Dakota gears up to execute convicted murderer Elijah Page, the sob stories are already starting. I saw one in the Rapid City Journal a couple of days ago which was short on fact about the upcoming execution, but very long (complete with the violin playing in the background) about how Page is just wasting away, and how hard this is on those who love him.

Meanwhile, the victim, Chester Allan Poage, and his mother Dottie got a passing mention.

The Argus Leader did have a better one today that was more factual, and I don't think I heard any violins.

Besides the murder itself and the murderer-sympathetic coverage the "mainstream" media provides, that's what bothers me the most about this and other murders: the victims are treated like an afterthought, like minor supporting players in a bigger overall drama. Yet they are the ones we should be most concerned about.

What does this say about our values and priorities as a society?

This is all I have to say (tonight) about Michael...

According to Michael Schiavo's TerriPAC blog, he has invited presidential candidates to sit down with him to discuss issues.

Does Michael Schiavo truly believe he warrants a personal audience?

Doesn't he get that candidates can actually use the "Terri Schiavo case" as an issue (either way) without his involvement?

I'm waiting to see if any candidate accepts the invitation.

I'd still like to know about the election eve rally with Bill Clinton that Michael claimed but never wrote about, though suggesting he would share this event with all.

I'd also like to know why he never made a correction on his blog (that I have found) about what took place at the debate. You know... the one where he accused Musgrave and/or her staff of trying to get him removed from the debate, only to find out that isn't what happened.

This is all I have to say (tonight) about Michael...

I'm waiting to hear the actual facts about any of this!

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