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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Duncan Hunter Throws in the Towel

It's official: Duncan Hunter has ended his campaign for the GOP presidential nomination.

How sad that while the true liberals of the Democrat Party get plenty of press, the true conservatives of the Republican Party (the few that there are) get ignored. And even sadder that so many people are willing to quietly accept the pablum they're fed.

Hopefully Hunter will be back in future elections. He has one of the most solid records of patriotic conservatism in congress. He has a lot to offer this country, and I'm sure he'll continue to do so whether it's from congress or the White House.

So at this point I shift my support to the candidacy of Fred Thompson. He's the next most conservative of the bunch. His record is still pretty reliably conservative, and he's getting more of that "fire in the belly" that's been lacking.


ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH REPORTS ON SEX CHARGES INVOLVING CHILDREN

Sex charges involve children
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
01/19/2008

ST. CHARLES — A 31-year-old woman was jailed Friday on charges she forced two children to imitate sex acts portrayed in a pornographic movie.

The woman, Jennifer N. Loggans, also had sexual contact with the children, both of whom are under 12, police said.

Loggans, of St. Charles, faces felony charges of using children in a sexual performance, two counts of attempted statutory sodomy and endangering the welfare of a child. She was held on $30,000 cash-only bail at the St. Charles County Jail.

(Full article)

It seems we are having a rash of sex crimes against children by women. Perhaps we are just beginning to learn the part women have played in such crimes all along. Regardless, in all such cases, it does show the decline of morality within our society. A decline that we need to be addressing before it is too late.


Aborted America

BY STAR PARKER
FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
COALITION ON URBAN RENEWAL & EDUCATION

What's the difference between art and politics?

The question occurred to me as I left the theater after seeing the surprising new hit film "Juno."

With presidential politics taking an unfortunately predictable turn in the direction of the gutter, I took a break from it all and went to the movies.

I don't spend much time going to films, but "Juno" seduced me because of its accolades and because of the subject matter. It's about teen pregnancy, the abortion option considered and rejected, and adoption. (Full Article)

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Lesson 3 - Anthropology: Who is Man?

The Truth Project continues this week at South Canyon Baptist Church in Rapid City this Sunday from 8:57 am to 10:15 am. Come and join us for lesson 3. It could change the way you look at the world, and maybe even be life changing.



The Bible tells us that man was created in God's image but fell from innocence through sin. Modern psychology, on the other hand, asserts that man is inherently good and behaves badly only under the influence of social or institutional pressure. This lesson explores the implications of both views.

Visit www.thetruthproject.org for more information.


Washington Watch Weekly

Highlights:

Voting trends and the lack of a clear front runner

The increased delay in parenthood among college grads

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Freed to Kill Wife

Estranged Husband Is Freed, Kills Wife
Last Edited: Saturday, 19 Jan
2008, 12:44 AM CST
Created: Friday, 18 Jan 2008, 7:43 PM CST

Monica Thomas-Harris got the chilling news just before Christmas: Her estranged husband, jailed for abducting and threatening her, had been released.

A frantic Thomas-Harris rushed to the district attorney's office, begging for an emergency protection order that would allow police to arrest him if he came near her. But it was the Friday evening before Christmas, and no judge was available. The next business day was Monday, but that was Christmas Eve, and her husband's lawyer was on a long vacation and couldn't be reached for a hearing.

Less than two weeks later, Thomas-Harris, 37, was dead, shot in a motel room by her husband in a murder-suicide.

(Full story)



Yet, we are suppose to have faith in the system (and those who man it) simply because?

Maybe it is time that the system is held accountable!


Friday, January 18, 2008

Fred Thompson Gets It!!!


Michael Gerson at the Washington Times seems apoplectic over an answer Fred Thompson recently gave that shows, unlike others (like Mike Huckabee), he understands both the Biblical and Constitutional role for charity.

At a campaign stop attended by a CBS reporter in Lady's Island, S.C., Thompson was asked if he, "as a Christian, as a conservative," supported President Bush's global AIDS initiative. "Christ didn't tell us to go to the government and pass a bill to get some of these social problems dealt with. He told us to do it," Thompson responded. "The government has its role, but we need to keep firmly in mind the role of the government, and the role of us as individuals and as Christians on the other."

Gerson opines:
Thompson's argument reflects an anti-government extremism, which I am sure his defenders would call a belief in limited government. In this case, Thompson is limiting government to a half-full thimble.

If only! Why don't you go back and read the Constitution, Mr. Gerson. Ours is a limited government of enumerated powers, which means, if you missed that day in class or had a liberal teacher who didn't care what it says either, that if an area of responsibility is not specifically written into our Constitution, the government has no legal authority to act in that area.

Thomas Jefferson made this clear when he said, "Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated." The phenomenon of government charity is a recent one in American history, having come about only in the last 60 years or so.

Before that, charity was handled by individuals, churches and private charities. That is because there was simply no constitutional authority (still isn't) for government to dispense charity. Like James Madison, "I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents. " And to my knowledge, the Constitution has not been amended since then to grant such authority to the United States government.

Gerson also makes the highly assumptive statement
Religious groups are essential to fighting AIDS, but they cannot act on a sufficient scale.

Really? Why not? Where is your proof that they cannot? Because government has tried to usurp their role for decades is not proof that they cannot do it, only that they are not currently doing it alone.

Besides, the best and easiest way to stop the spread of AIDS lies not in spending money, but in teaching morality. A born-again change of heart can help people avoid the behaviors that transmit the AIDS virus.

But Gerson goes on to dig himself deeper.
Thompson also dives headfirst into the shallow pool of his own theological knowledge. In his interpretation, Jesus seems to be a libertarian activist who taught that compassion is an exclusively private virtue.

Gerson should go look in the mirror if he wants to see an example of a "shallow pool of his own theological knowledge." Can Gerson show me a single passage, a single verse, where Jesus advocated that the government dole out compassion? Can he find some where Jesus told PEOPLE to help those in need?

Gerson continues to dig his theological grave:
This ignores centuries of reflection on the words of the Bible that have led to a nearly universal Christian conviction that government has obligations to help the weak and pursue social justice.

I think Gerson means "nearly universal LIBERAL conviction" here. You won't find anything in the Bible to support government charity and wealth redistribution no matter how long liberals have been "reflecting" on it.

You will find justification in the Bible for the pursuit of social justice, when crimes have been committed against the innocent and when people's God-given rights have been trampled on...but no where in the Bible does it say government should take from one person and give to another.
It is hard to imagine they would have used the teachings of Christ to justify cutting off lifesaving drugs for tens of thousands of African children -- an argument both novel and obscene.

If government was still within its Biblical and Constitutional boundaries in America, there would be no "cutting off" of aid to African children. Any such charity would be coming from private individuals and charities, as it should be.

Continuing on:
In the lifeboat dilemma Thompson proposes, we are asked to throw overboard either an American child with leukemia or an African child with AIDS -- and, by gum, it had better not be the American.

Again, Gerson assumes that if government (presumably American government) does not do it, it will not get done. Why can African nations not help themselves? It's not as if they have no natural resources or lack manpower with which to generate wealth. They do have this little problem with socialism and government corruption which handicaps them, but if we're always willing to throw American tax dollars at African problems, there is no incentive to fix that problem in Africa, now is there?

Onward with Gerson's myopic vision of government "compassion:"
What of the more than 1.4 million men, women and children who have received treatment with the help of Bush's AIDS initiative? According to Thompson, they are not a priority. The 800,000 HIV-positive pregnant women who have gotten treatment to prevent transmission to their children? Not a priority. The care of nearly 3 million orphans? Not a priority.

What? I thought Bush was killing Africans because he was unwilling to spend a penny to help? That's what you'd have to conclude from all the wailing and caterwauling from the Left that Bush isn't spending enough on AIDS, and specifically AIDS in Africa. Which, incidentally, is a moral problem since sex outside of marriage is the primary cause of infection, and moral problems are exactly what the church was commissioned to deal with.

One more parting shot at Thompson, as if Gerson hasn't done enough by this point to paint this evil conservative as more despicable and uncaring than Stalin:
Support for the fight against AIDS is not a matter of being a "Christian" or a "conservative" -- or a liberal or a Buddhist. It is an expression of compassion and empathy, which also reflects a serious conception of America's role in the world.

Americans are a giving people, as a number of philanthropy reports show. According to Philanthropy News Digest, Americans gave $3.16 billion to relief efforts for the 2004 Asian tsunami. And according to the Non-profit Times, Americans gave nearly $250 billion total in charity in 2004. And remember, too, that this is during a time when ever American knows that his government will shell out billions of his taxpayer dollars to charity every year without his consent.

Imagine what philanthropic giving might be if private individuals and organizations knew that their wallets weren't going to be unconstitutionally lightened for this purpose by their government, and the sole responsibility for charity was once again theirs?

Contrary to Gerson's "perfect world," our government was designed (and still is designed) to base our laws on the United States Constitution, the ultimate law of our country. Our nation was NOT designed to have our laws based on whim or popular sentiment.

How refreshing that Fred Thompson seems to understand this truth! I think I know why my second choice for president, after Duncan Hunter, would be.


Deadly and Expensive CAFE Standards

It's easy for Congress to pass a law, but sometimes a little harder for the consumer to afford their laws.

Case in point, CNS News reports that those fuel standards that the tree huggers like so much will come out of YOUR wallet.

The new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards - set by Congress and signed into law by President Bush in the new energy bill - will require vehicles to get 35 miles per gallon by the year 2020 and will add somewhere between $900 and $10,000 to the cost of buying a car, dependent upon which expert is consulted.

And it's not just the money, but the safety of ever-cheaper and lighter cars.
"It also noted that downsizing of vehicles in the 1970s and 1980s may have contributed to an additional 1,300 to 2,600 fatalities (alone)" - a number that could add up to thousands more deaths on American highways under the new CAFE standards, Ebell said.

The good ole powerful, mighty, majestic and stylish American car has already morphed into a clone of the boxish, flimsy, characterless foreign cars. Apparently it's only going to get worse...and cost more.

Our cars are already mostly plastic as it is. What's next: plastic bumpers? Plastic rims? Plastic frames?

And while the other cars out there might be made out of plastic also, those guard rails and trees aren't going to get any softer.


Hate the Sin, Love the Game

ON THE CHURCH AND SOCIETY

By Raymond J. Keating


While the NFL playoffs forge on towards the Super Bowl, passion for this football season came to an end for me when my Minnesota Vikings fell to the Washington Redskins in the next to last game of the season. Playoff hopes – what little existed for a team with no passing game – were dashed.

So, it’s time to fire up the Hot Stove League and look to baseball. While the heart of this fan rests with the Cincinnati Reds (anyone know of an available veteran starter?), I can watch a baseball game anytime, anywhere, and between any teams.

Baseball? I can hear the protests. (Full Article)


NewsBusted 1/18: Bloomberg jumping in? Eeevil Halliburton



Topics in this episode: Mike Bloomberg entering the presidential race, insane allegations about Halliburton assassinating Barack Obama, and Hannah Montana's body double.

NewsBusted is a comedy webcast about the news of the day, uploaded every Tuesday and every Friday.


Pascal's Pensees

BreakPoint - Chuck Colson and Mark Earley

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Homemakers

James Dobson Family Minute

Family advocate Dr. James Dobson, with colleague Dr. Bill Maier, observes that full-time mothers feel disrespected by the current culture.

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Family News in Focus 01-18-08

Number of abortions dropping

Pro life group gets the cold shoulder from Democrat congress

Atheist radio broadcast

Alcohol on the rise in children between 8 and 10

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Be Prepared to Pay for Your Rights

Washington Watch Daily

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Thursday, January 17, 2008

Another Huckabee Skeleton Out of the Closet

The Arkansas Journal is reporting on another of Mike Huckabee's irresponsible exercises of clemency as governor of Arkansas:

In 1994 John Henry Claiborne, a man already convicted of 6 prior felonies, kicked in the back door of the home of Homer and Vivian Allbritton and held them at gunpoint with a stolen shotgun while he robbed them. Claiborne took all the valuables he could carry from the Allbrittons' house, including Mrs. Allbritton's wedding ring that he stripped from her finger as she lay on the ground. Claiborne then stole the Allbrittons' car and drove away. He was soon arrested, put on trial, and sentenced to 375 years behind bars. Three years after Mike Huckabee commuted Claiborne's sentence, he is once again the target of prosecutors for his alleged felonies.

Claiborne remained in prison until 2004, when then-Governor Mike Huckabee commuted his sentence to "time served" and released him, over the objections of law enforcement, jurors in Claiborne's case, and the Allbritton family.

The release says Claiborne was again arrested in the fall of 2007 on drug dealing charges.

What does it take to get a dangerous criminal locked away from society, these days???

And how does a Baptist preacher justify such reckless disregard for justice, public safety and respect for the law???


Bill Mandating College Applications Killed in Committee

From the Rapid City Journal, that stupid bill SB 67 to require high school students to apply to college (whether they intend to go or not) has died a quick death.

The committee voted unanimously to defer the measure to the 36th legislative day. In a 35-day session, that means the bill is dead.

As imperfect as it is, this is why our republican form of government is far superior to dictatorships and oligarchies. Stupid ideas are far more likely to be stomped out when you have a group of several (presumably) intelligent people looking at it...and held accountable by the voters for what they decide.
Even the sponsor, Senator Cooper Garnos of Presho, admitted it was a weak bill.
Garnos said one student told him "it was the stupidest idea he'd ever heard." Garnos also told the Senate Education Committee, "I think there might possibly be some opponents to this bill."

That line got a laugh, but Garnos said his only goal was to encourage more applications. "Most people in this day and age need some further education," he said.

Yeah, and I need more money, too, but it isn't the role of the government to mandate that my employer pay me more, any more than it's the role of government to mandate that students must apply to institutions of higher learning.


Bill Clinton Blows a Gasket over Vegas Lawsuit



Bill Clinton becomes angry over questions regarding a lawsuit by Clinton backers to reduce the number of caucus sites in Nevada.


Closed-Minded Science

CNS News examines the struggle of intelligent design to simply be allowed in our mock-tolerant society.

Intelligent design theory, or ID, is opening new doors of scientific research, particularly in cancer and other disease research, according to its adherents, but a new movie, "Expelled" starring Ben Stein explores how an "elitist scientific establishment" is apparently muzzling and smearing scientists who publicly discuss ID.

The First Amendment is under brutal attack in the scientific community, Ben Stein, a former presidential speechwriter-turned-actor and commentator, says in the film, which opens in theaters on Feb. 12.

I got to hear Ben Stein and see an extended clip of his Expelled movie at the Washington Briefing back on October. Both were very engaging.

Isn't it interesting that in a society that prides itself on being tolerant of things such as homosexual priests, homosexual sex in public bathrooms, children out of wedlock and radical Islam, the elites in our society somehow can't seem to tolerate a theory that goes against their religion of secular humanism.

These so-called intellectuals who believe a universe as vast and complex and ordered as ours simply could not have been created by an intelligent designer...and they certainly can't stomach the thought that it might have been the Judeo-Christian God!

It would be one thing if the average Joe were to intellectually exclude such a possibility as intelligent design; he might be forgiven for his closed-mindedness and willful ignorance. But for those who pride themselves on their open-mindedness and ability to reach for new conclusions and truths...well, it's comical.

It's a bit like a historian of American history who refuses to believe that there is such a thing as world history. When you ask him about world history, he laughs condescendingly and claims that there is no such thing, that there is no evidence of world history. When you insist that things have indeed happened outside of America over the course of existence, he mockingly tells you that silly people who believe such myths have actually looked all over America and found no signs of Roman forums or Greek temples or Chinese pagodas. Yes, of course there are people in America who appear to have come from all sorts of ethnic and linguistic backgrounds, but they actually derived from different areas around America itself. There simply cannot be any history other than American history, he insists.

This is a simplistic and inadequate analogy, but hopefully you get the idea. Atheistic and materialistic scientists are utterly closed-minded to the possibility of an intelligent designer. The refuse to see the signs of design throughout this universe which is immensely complex and operates by certain fundamental laws of science. In fact, they see those very laws of science as proof that there can be no supernatural force. What they refuse to allow the possibility for is that maybe the intelligent designer, who was powerful enough to create this universe and establish these laws of science, might in fact have the power to transcend and supersede those laws himself. Just as an average PC user cannot change a computer program, but a programmer with knowledge of the program language and access to the program code can do with it whatever he wants--he can suspend the "laws" or parameters of that program at will.

Hopefully Stein's movie will help open some eyes to the tremendous truths which may be realized through considering intelligent design. Or if nothing else, maybe shame some of these highbrow elites into being a little more open-minded by displaying their stunningly willful ignorance.

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Religion Never Left Our Schools

Answers with Ken Ham

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


An Ironic Juxtaposition

BreakPoint - Chuck Colson and Mark Earley

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Family News in Focus 01-17-08

How pro-life is your state?

Abortion is on the decline

Having homosexual sex in a bathroom stall is "private?"

No homosexual agenda?

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Partial Birth Abortion is in Vogue

Washington Watch Daily

A "loving" abortion

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Wednesday, January 16, 2008

UPDATE: Enlistment Bonuses NOT Being Taken from Medically Discharged Soldiers

A few weeks ago the Rapid City Journal editorialized on an alleged Department of Defense policy requiring combat-wounded military personnel to give back a portion of the enlistment bonus they received if they are medically retired or separated from the military due to combat-related injury.

Accepting the accuracy of this respectable newspaper's editorial at face value, I joined them in calling for passage of the Wounded Warrior Bonus Equity Act, a measure which would prevent such a cold-hearted and ungrateful policy toward our wounded military heroes.

But today NewsMax says that while enlistment bonuses were mistakenly asked for from a handful of injured and discharged military members, it was not systemic and not a DOD policy:

THE FACTS: The Pentagon's long-existing policy is to pay enlistment bonuses in full to soldiers who leave the armed forces early for reasons beyond their control. Officials last year reported clerical mistakes that resulted in a few wounded veterans being asked for bonus money back, said those cases would be redressed and revised the wording of its policy in September so lapses wouldn't be repeated.

One case was uncovered by a presidential commission formed earlier last year to recommend improvements in veterans' care. "It certainly didn't rise to the level of an important issue in our work," Susan Hosek, a Rand Corp. economist who was the commission's research director, told AP in December. "If it had, we would have made sure that it was highlighted in our report ... we literally only heard about it once, that I know of."

The commission was led by former Sen. Bob Dole and former Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala.

Looks like somebody got some bad information on this one. Being a 10-year military veteran myself, I'm very well acquainted with goof-ups in government bureaucracy, but I'm very glad to hear that this was not a policy of the Department of Defense.

It stretched credulity for me at the time, but when you read something so bold and clear-cut from a reputable newspaper...


Is Mike Huckabee a Conservative?


Someone at Free Republic has posted a comprehensive list of examples of why Mike Huckabee cannot be considered a conservative, despite his pro-life stance.



Conservatism v. Huckabee


Count 1: Weakest in the Republican field on immigration


Exhibit A: Huckabee calls immigration bill "un-Christian, anti-life"


(Arkansas Senate Bill 206 would have denied state benefits to illegal aliens, required proof of citizenship to vote, and require state agencies to report illegal aliens.)


Even if benefits to people who are in the U.S illegally could be stopped, "I don't understand how a practicing Christian can turn his back on a child from this or any other state," Huckabee said.

"Something that's not worth sharing is not worth celebrating," Huckabee said. "This is the kind of country that opens its doors. This bill expresses an un-American attitude."


(Immigration bill un-Christian, anti-life, governor says, Arkansas News Bureau, 01/28/2005)
He said the bill could hurt the state's ability to recruit industries based in countries outside the U.S., such as Toyota or Nestle, a Swiss company.


"If we send a message that essentially if you don't look like us, talk like us and speak like us we don't want you, it has tremendous economic repercussions," Huckabee said.


(Huckabee, callers go toe-to-toe on immigration, Arkansas News Bureau, 02/03/2005)


Exhibit B: Huckabee promotes "open door" policy at LULAC convention


LITTLE ROCK - In a impassioned speech before hundreds of influential Hispanic civil rights leaders from across the nation, Gov. Mike Huckabee told a captive audience Wednesday that America is great because it has always opened it doors up to people seeking a better way of life.
(snip)


Despite several light moments, Huckabee did not stray away from several controversial issues that made him a target of criticism during the recently ended 85th General Assembly. He said Arkansas needs to make the transition from a traditional Southern state to one that recognizes and cherishes diversity "in culture, in language and in population."


(snip)


The Republican governor, who many believe will run for president in 2008, also backed legislation that would have opened the door for illegal immigrants in Arkansas to receive college scholarships.


House Bill 1525 by Rep. Joyce Elliott, D-Little Rock, was approved by the House but eventually failed in the Senate. Huckabee reiterated Wednesday that he believes every child, regardless of their parent's immigration status, should have an opportunity to receive an education in the U.S.
"I ... believe that an education for every child is the most important single factor to give everyone to be their very best," he said.


(Huckabee promotes "open door" policy at LULAC convention, Arkansas News Bureau, 01/30/2005)


Exhibit C: Huckabee threatens to sue feds over ID rules


WASHINGTON (AP) — States are threatening to challenge in court and even disobey new orders from Congress to start issuing more uniform driver's licenses and verify the citizenship or legal status of people getting them.


(snip)


"Governors are looking at all their options. If more than half of the governors agree we're not going down without a fight on this, Congress will have to consider changing this unfunded federal mandate," said Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, vice chairman of the National Governors Association. A Huckabee aide said the options include court action.


(States may disobey new ID rules, fight them in court, USA Today, 05/10/2005)


Exhibit D: Immigration group: Huckabee a 'disaster'


Groups that support a crackdown on illegal aliens haven't settled on their champion in the race for the White House, but there's little doubt which Republican scares them most — former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.


"He was an absolute disaster on immigration as governor," said Roy Beck, president of NumbersUSA, a group that played a major role in rallying the phone calls that helped defeat this year's Senate immigration bill. "Every time there was any enforcement in his state, he took the side of the illegal aliens."


As Mr. Huckabee rises in the polls, his opponents are beginning to take shots at him on immigration. Just as problematic for the former Arkansas governor, however, is that the independent interest groups that track the issue are also giving him the once-over, and don't like what they see.


"Huckabee is the guy who scares the heck out of me," said Peter Gadiel, president of 9-11 Families for a Secure America, a group instrumental in fighting for the REAL ID Act that sets federal standards for driver's licenses.


(Immigration group: Huckabee a 'disaster', By Stephen Dinan, Washington Post, November 30, 2007)


Exhibit E: Illegals foes reject nod to Huckabee


Minuteman co-founder James Gilchrist's endorsement of presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has spurred a backlash among illegal-immigration opponents who say the former Arkansas governor is soft on immigration enforcement.


"Mike Huckabee is pro-amnesty and favors a path to citizenship for illegal aliens currently in the U.S. that would require a lifting of current penalties," said William Gheen, whose 25,000-member Americans for Legal Immigration sent mass mailings yesterday to more than 300 pro-enforcement groups.


"Huckabee has released an immigration plan that contains the deceptive 'touch back' provision that the pushers of amnesty tried on us in Washington this year," he said. "He wants to trick the nation by having illegal aliens leave for a day to pick up new papers at an office set up across the border and then walk right back."


(snip)


Bob Wright, who heads the Patriots' Border Alliance, another Minuteman splinter group, said although Mr. Gilchrist helped move the issue of illegal entry into the U.S. "to it's rightful place on the national stage," his endorsement of Mr. Huckabee "is at best disturbing."


"While I believe it is possible for a professional politician to change his mind on a subject as he becomes more informed, I have serious doubts that is the case with Huckabee," Mr. Wright said. "His past rhetoric about the goals of Minutemen everywhere has been vicious — parroting the tired and discredited foolishness that an American citizen's desire to see the law enforced is somehow racist or xenophobic."


(snip)


(Illegals foes reject nod to Huckabee, By Jerry Seper, The Washington Times, 12-13-2007)


Exhibit F: Corsi: Huckabee's tough talk on immigration doesn't match his record/ Mexican Consular Office Affair


"Huckabee has the same problem on immigration that Mitt Romney has -- and that is Mitt Romney and Huckabee, as governors, do not have a strong secure border record. And Huckabee's record is terrible," according to Jerome Corsi, an adamant border hawk. (be sure to go to the source and read the whole article)


I would argue that while Romney's record is less than stellar, he's head and shoulders above the duplicitous Huckster (whose record on immigration is detailed on this blog, just scroll down).

While Romney tolerated sanctuary cities in his state, Huckabee encouraged them by rewarding illegal aliens with scholarships, discounted college tuition, and state benefits.


Huckabee also established a Mexican Consular office in Little Rock, which "increases the capacity of the Mexican state to bring attention, protection, and assistance to all of those living abroad, independently from their immigration status", according to Mexican ambassador Arturo Sarukhan. It also issues "matricula consular" cards, with which illegal aliens can open bank accounts and obtain other services.


In 2003, Huckabee (on a state-owned aircraft) to Mexico with Robert Trevino, who was the director of the League of United Latin American Citizens (aka LULAC) and Huckabee's "Economic Development adviser". There they met with Vincente Fox.


In 2006, Arkansas leased government office space, including furniture, to the Mexican government for $1 per year to house the Consular office until they built their own headquarters. It's unclear whether this subsidized lease was in violation of state law.


(Critics question Huckabee's role in establishing Mexican consulate in Little Rock, Legality of Huckabee's Mexican consulate deal questioned)


Exhibit G: 84 leaders of Immigration Enforcement Groups Rebuke Gilchrist's Endorsement of Huckabee


From Americans for Legal Immigration:
PLEASE POST, FORWARD, and BROADCAST!
In reaction to Jim Gilchrist's (Co-Founder of Minutemen) lone endorsement of pro-amnesty Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee:


We, the undersigned, state that our organizations stand against racism and Amnesty for illegal aliens. Instead, we stand for the enforcement of our existing immigration laws, the securing of America's borders, and attrition enforcement.


We have dedicated our efforts to fighting illegal immigration and we are compelled to warn the American public about the immigration stance and record of Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee.


We denounce Jim Gilchrist's solo endorsement of a pro-amnesty and Open Borders candidate for President. Mr. Gilchrist does NOT speak for us!


Mike Huckabee is pro-amnesty and favors a "path to citizenship" for illegal aliens currently in the US, which would require a lifting of the current penalties.


Mike Huckabee is against ICE raids and decried them in his home state, when illegal aliens were arrested at companies that financially support his campaigns.


Mike Huckabee supports benefits for illegal aliens such as taxpayer subsidized in-state tuition.
Governor Huckabee also favors a "touchback" provision, which we feel is a trick to confuse voters. He would have illegal aliens leave for a day, pick up new papers, and then reenter the US LEGALLY, which is not the back of the immigration line! He has stated that illegal aliens could leave and "You do have a pathway to get back here legally that would take days, maybe weeks, not years."


Mike Huckabee supported Comprehensive Immigration Reform Amnesty that failed in the US Senate and was rejected by a large majority of Americans. He stated that those who opposed the legislation are "driven by racism or nativism."


Mike Huckabee has distorted the goals of "attrition enforcement" and the positions of Mark Krikorian by adding visa expansions, expedited visas, and "touchback", which would counteract enforcement measures.


In truth, Mike Huckabee's stances on the illegal immigration issue are out of line with the vast majority of Americans.


Go to the source to see the impressive list of signatories, as it's too long to post here.


Exhibit H: WaPo Fact Checker: Three Pinocchios for Huckabee on Illegal Immigration
WaPo is link only.


Exhibit I: Huckabee: I can’t compromise on scholarships for illegals because “my soul will not let me” (video)


Count 2: Liberal on Taxes and Spending


Exhibit A: Huckabee's tax hikes and tax "cuts"


Hikes:
-Signed a sales tax hike in 1996 (Cato Policy Analysis No. 315, 09/03/98)
-Supported an internet sales tax in 2001 (Reuters, 02/23/04)
-Publicly opposed the repeal of a sales tax on groceries and medicine in 2002 (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 09/11/02)
-Signed a gas tax in 1999 (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 06/29/99)
-Signed cigarette tax hike in 2003 (Americans for Tax Reform 01/07/07)
-Signed a bed tax on private nursing home patients in 2001 (Associated Press 06/29/01)
-Proposed a sales take hike in 2002 (Arkansas News Bureau 12/05/02)
-Opposed a congressional measure to ban internet taxes in 2003 (Arkansas News Bureau 11/21/03)
-Allowed a 17% sales tax increase to become law in 2004 (The Gurdon Times 03/02/04)
"cuts":
When questioned on the taxes hikes he was responsible for during his tenure as governor (a whopping inflation-adjusted sum of $505 million, according to the Arkansas Democrat Gazette), his response is usually that he cut taxes 90 times.
The only real cut he made was $90.6 million in 1997. The rest of his "cuts" were minor adjustments and exemptions. Here are some examples:
1997
-Authorized tax-exempt bonds for fire-ant abatement (-$100,000)
-Exempted residential lawn care from the sales tax (-$210,000)
-Exempted Heifer International from the sales tax (-$60,000)
-Exempted some county fairs from the special-events sales tax (-$15,000)
1999
-Exempted equipment used to produce sod, grass and nursery products from the sales tax (-$200,000)
-Repealed the 20 percent tax on bingo admissions and cards (-$200,000)
2001
-Reduced taxes on bets made on horse races at Oaklawn Park (-$1,700, 000)
-Reduced taxes on bets made at Southland Greyhound Park (-$600,000)
2003
-Exempted some health-club services from the sales tax (-$160,000)
-Gave income-tax credits to biodiesel wholesalers (-$200,000)
2005
-Granted an income-tax deduction for organ donation (-$76,000)
-Exempted Arkansas Symphony Orchestra purchases from the sales tax (-$20,530)
Net difference:
These 90 cuts amount to a total of $378 million. On the other side of the ledger, Huckabee's 21 tax hikes amount to a total of $883 million, a net difference of $505 million. The average taxpayer's annual tax burden grew from $1,969 in 1997 to $2,902 in 2005.
(source: Arkansas Democrat Gazette)


Exhibit B: Spending under Huckabee


http://www.arkansas.gov/dfa/accounting/documents/2006_arkansas_cafr-web_version.pdf
According to this doc, under Huckabee’s tenure as gov, spending on Health and Human Services (aka welfare) in Arkansas went from $2.44 billion in 1997 to $4.65 billion in 2006, a 92% increase. (see pages 130-131 of the .pdf file). He claims most of the increases were for roads and education. Education increased from $1.81 billion in 1997 to 3.04 billion in 2006 (a 68% increase, 24% less than the HHS increase), but transportation spending actually decreased from $677 million in 1997 to $320 million in 2006, a 53% decrease.
Overall spending increased at three times the rate of inflation. (source)


Exhibit C: Huckabee refuses to endorse President Bush's veto of SCHIP, aka HillaryCare Lite (source)


Exhibit D: Huckabee earns a D on fiscal policy from the Cato Institute


Exhibit E: Huckabee on Global Warming: Huckabee supports cap-in-trade system (source)


Count 3: Soft on Crime


Exhibit A: Huckabee granted more clemencies than all neighboring states combined


If you're wondering how Gov. Huckabee's hundreds of clemencies compare with neighboring states, get ready for a shocker.


Huckabee leads the pack.


He has issued more commutations and pardons than all of the six neighboring states combined.
Governors seldom reduce sentences in other states – and almost never for murderers serving life without parole or for rapists or for habitual drunk drivers, while in Arkansas it's a regular habit with Huckabee.


Other governors use their clemency power only rarely, while Huckabee has made it routine. As we've told you before, he has issued more than 700 pardons and commutations during his eight years in office – more than 137 this year alone – and more than his three predecessors combined.


Here are the figures for neighboring states since 1996, when Huckabee took office (and keep in mind the population of these states is nearly 20 times ours):


-Louisiana

– 213-Mississippi

– 24-Missouri

– 79.-Oklahoma

– 178.-Tennessee

– 32.-Texas

– 98 (includes 36 inmates released because they were convicted on drug charges with planted evidence).


Total: 624 vs. Huckabee's 703.


Governors in neighboring states almost never grant killers clemency, while Huckabee has commuted the sentences of a dozen murderers.


(snip)


Governors in the states we studied grant clemencies only on special occasions, such as when they leave office. Last January, after Mississippi Gov. Ronnie Musgrove, a Democrat, lost his re-election bid, he issued 16 clemencies, and there was a huge outcry. That's how many Huckabee averages per month.


By contrast, Haley Barbour, Mississippi's new Republican governor, has issued no clemencies all year, nor has Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, Louisiana's new governor, a Democrat.
In Tennessee, Gov. Phil Bredesen, a Democrat, has issued no clemencies since he took office in January 2003.


(snip)


(Arkansas clemencies outpace other states, Garrick Feldman, The Arkansas Leader 08-11-04)


Exhibit B: Wayne DuMond


Mom: 'Carol Sue Would Be Alive Today' If Not for Huckabee


A Missouri mother says she will do "whatever it takes" to stop former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee from becoming president, because he freed the man who went on to rape and murder her daughter, Carol Sue Shields.


(snip)


Wayne Dumond was initially sentenced to life plus 25 years for raping a 17-year-old Arkansas high school cheerleader. In 1999, a parole board voted to free Dumond, after then-Gov. Mike Huckabee announced his desire to see him released.


A former parole board member tells ABC News that Huckabee exerted strong pressure on the board to release Dumond.


(Mom: 'Carol Sue Would Be Alive Today' If Not for Huckabee, Brian Ross and Anna Schecter, The Blotter at ABC News, 12-04-2007)


Exhibit C: Glen Green


Why parole a monster like Green


(snip)


Green, a 22-year-old sergeant, kidnapped Helen Lynette Spencer on Little Rock Air Force Base, where he beat and kicked her as he tried to rape her in a secluded area. She broke loose and ran toward the barracks' parking lot, where he caught up with her and beat her with a pair of nunchucks.


He then stuffed her into the trunk of his car and left her there while he cleaned up. Several hours later, he drove down Graham Road, past Loop Road and stopped near a bridge in Lonoke County. Green told investigators he put her body in the front seat and raped her because her body was still warm.


He dragged Spencer out of his vehicle and put her in front of the car and ran over her several times, going back and forth. He then collected himself long enough to dump her body in Twin Prairie Bayou.


This is what the Rev. Johnny Jackson, interim pastor at Bethel Baptist Church in Jacksonville, calls an accident, and apparently Huckabee believes him.


"There is no doubt in my mind that he could kill again," warns Pulaski County Prosecutor Larry Jegley.


The crime started out in his jurisdiction and ended in Lonoke County, where Prosecutor Lona McCastlain has also spoken out against the clemency.


"Life means life," she said, referring to Green's sentence after he plead guilty to Spencer's kidnapping, rape and murder.


(snip)


(Why parole a monster like Green, Garrick Feldman, The Arkansas Leader, 07-21-04)


Count 4: Naive, Liberal, and Wrong on Foreign Policy


Exhibit A: Called our foreign policy an "arrogant bunker mentality", blames terrorism on economic conditions, thinks diplomacy and foreign aid will solve every problem


Huckabee's 'Clueless' Foreign Policy


(snip)


More than anything, Huckabee's essay is startling in its incoherence, and it has something within it to scare off any faction of the conservative movement. To those who remain supportive of President Bush and believe he has helped keep us safe since Sept. 11, Huckabee writes that "the Bush administration's arrogant bunker mentality has been counterproductive at home and abroad." He goes on to echo liberal talking points in criticizing Bush for his handling of Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, and Al Qaeda. For those conservatives who believe that Iran does not deserve to be awarded with diplomatic ties to the U.S. given its "a world without America" and "wipe Israel off the map" rhetoric—not to mention funding of terrorist activities directed at Americans in Iraq—Huckabee thinks we should talk with the Islamist government, because "When one stops talking to a parent or a friend, differences cannot be resolved and relationships cannot move forward. The same is true for countries." I'm sure there are some non-interventionist conservatives who may agree with Huckabee's criticisms of the Bush administration for being overly macho, and needlessly confrontational with Iran. Yet what they have to look forward to in a Huckabee administration would be continued U.S. presence in Iraq, possible air strikes on Pakistan, a larger military, and a foreign aid program that would make Lyndon Johnson's Great Society look like a trivial domestic initiative. "We must first destroy existing terrorist groups and then attack the underlying conditions that breed them: the lack of basic sanitation, health care, education, jobs, a free press, fair courts -- which all translates into a lack of opportunity and hope," Huckabee writes. "The United States' strategic interests as the world's most powerful country coincide with its moral obligations as the richest."


(snip)


(Huckabee's 'Clueless' Foreign Policy, Philip Klein, The American Spectator, 12-15-2007)


Exhibit B: Just like Barack Obama, Huckabee Wants to negotiate with Iran and invade Pakistan
Tin Mike


(snip)


Just as Huckabee has cited executions in Arkansas as evidence that he was not as soft on criminals as the rest of his record strongly suggests, his defenders have pointed to examples of tough foreign policy statements he has made to argue that he is not as weak-kneed on national security as he seems. "I would prefer to skip the next attack [on the United States] and the exasperated fury it will rightly generate and cut to the chase by going after Al Qaeda's safe haven in Pakistan," Huckabee said at a September speech to the Center for Strategic and International Studies. But vacillating from one extreme to the other is not an example of intelligent foreign policy -- it's indicative of inexperience. Wasn't it just a few months ago that conservatives were slamming Barack Obama for wanting to negotiate with Iran and invade Pakistan?


(snip)


(Tin Mike, Philip Klein, The American Spectator, 12/12/2007)


Count 5: Ethical Lapses


Exhibit A: Fiscal malfeasance


-Used campaign funds to pay himself $14,000 for being his own media consultant.


-Used campaign funds to pay himself $43,000 for use of his private plane while attempting to hide what the payment was actually in return for.


-Used an account set up to cover operational costs of the governor's mansion to pay such obviously personal expenses as fast-food and dry-cleaning bills.


-Set up a nonprofit organization that paid him $23,500 without disclosing the source of the money.


-Attempted to take $70,000 of furniture with him when moving out of the governor's mansion.


-Took more than 130 gifts worth more than $300,000 – while suing to overturn a law that made him disclose the gifts.


(source: Meet the Huckster, San-Diego Union-Tribune Editorial, December 3, 2007)


Exhibit B: Cover-up of son's criminal depravity


This is in regards to Huckabee's son torturing and killing a dog, and Huckabee's subsequent cover-up.

News-Weak is link-only.


Count 6: Flip-Flopping on Abortion as a State vs. Federal issue


(snip)


Huckabee said it was preposterous to say that such a deep moral issue should be left up to the states. If abortion is immoral in one state it is immoral in all of them, he said. He was “shocked” at Thompson’s stance. He claimed that he had always believed in a federal ban on abortions.
But a short time earlier Huckabee had sat down with the conservative essayist John Hawkins for a long conversation about the issues. He was asked about abortion. Huckabee said the legality of abortion should not be settled at the national level but should be left up to the states. This is the direct quote from the transcript, which until recently you could access on the Huckabee presidential campaign website:


“I’ve never felt that it was a legitimate manner in which to address this and, first of all, it should be left to the states, the 10th Amendment. . .” The 10th Amendment to the U. S. Constitution is the states-rights doctrine.


(snip)


(Huck flip flops, Editorial, The Arkansas Leader, November 28, 2007)


Count 7: Damage to the Republican Party and Conservative Movement


(snip)

Betsy Hagan, Arkansas director of the conservative Eagle Forum and a key backer of his early runs for office, was once "his No. 1 fan." She was bitterly disappointed with his record. "He was pro-life and pro-gun, but otherwise a liberal," she says. "Just like Bill Clinton he will charm you, but don't be surprised if he takes a completely different turn in office."


Phyllis Schlafly, president of the national Eagle Forum, is even more blunt. "He destroyed the conservative movement in Arkansas, and left the Republican Party a shambles," she says. "Yet some of the same evangelicals who sold us on George W. Bush as a 'compassionate conservative' are now trying to sell us on Mike Huckabee."


(snip)


(Another Man From Hope: Who is Mike Huckabee?, OpinionJournal.com, 10-26-07)


Count 8: Endorsed by the NEA


Huckabee is endorsed by the National Education Association. What else needs to be said?

HT to the Arkansas Journal.


U.S. Marines on the Holodeck




Marines at Camp Pendleton, California are using new holographic technology to prepare for the rigors of the battlefield in Iraq.


Recommended Reading



Who Do America's Warriors Trust?



From: CGOStriker2911

Video I put together to show Christians in the military sort of like a tribute. I also put images of civilian Christians, young, old and odd looking. I also wanted to share the Good news of Jesus Christ. Music by Arron Shust


A Respected Man

James Dobson Family Minute

Psychologist and author Dr. James Dobson observes that behind every great man is a great woman — who respects him.

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


School Violence: Who Owns Us?

Answers with Ken Ham

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Protocols likely ignored in child abduction case.

In a previous post Bob Ellis comments on a rather bizarre case in Colorado in which an 11 year old boy was seized by a sheriff’s SWAT team after a minor injury the day before in which the boy apparently bumped his head while clowning around with an older sister. A neighbor called for an ambulance but the boy’s father didn’t think the injuries warranted an expensive trip to the emergency room. World Net Daily reports that the paramedics, upon arrival, forced their way into the families home and insisted that the boy be transported to the hospital. The father refused, stating that he was capable of monitoring the child’s condition and making decisions about his son’s need for additional care.

The paramedic on the scene is reported to have been angered and upset about the father’s refusal to allow transport to the hospital and thus the sad case develops as the paramedic contacted the local police, then the Sheriff’s office and then Social Services, apparently alleging neglect of a minor. This set into motion a sequence of events that culminated in the invasion of the family’s home by a SWAT team with weapons drawn and threatening lethal force, simply for the purpose of forcing a medical evaluation of the boy.

Emergency Medical Services, which encompasses ambulance service and paramedics, is regulated by state agencies and the care rendered by EMS personnel is specified in approved protocols that are written by a medical director, usually a physician who specializes in emergency medicine. When circumstances arise that extend outside the written protocols, which often happens, the paramedics are instructed to contact their medical director for instructions on how best to proceed.

A search for EMS protocols in Colorado did not turn up any documents for protocols specific to Garfield County, but I reviewed others from other services and found that they were quite similar to that which we use in Indiana. In the situation at hand protocols dictate that the paramedic contact “medical control” regarding transport of a minor against the will of a parent. There is no mention in the story about a medical director being involved in the decision process of the paramedic and this suggests to me that the paramedic acted on his or her own, outside the approved protocols. If that is the case, this person has violated a very serious responsibility of EMS workers.

Paramedics and EMTs are called upon to deal with patients often under the worst of circumstances: extreme trauma, agonizing grief, hysterical patients, obstinate and angry patients and families, drunkenness, other forms of intoxication and often just plain stupidity. It is sometimes a challenge to hold their own emotions in check and to behave professionally and appropriately, i.e., according to protocols. But professionalism is the strict standard to which we hold these workers. It appears that the paramedic who set this event into motion let his or her emotions take control and the consequences will be severe for all those involved.


Sleepless in America: Addicted to Caffeine

BreakPoint - Chuck Colson and Mark Earley

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Family News in Focus 01-16-08

Is TANF being used to encourage life, or abortion?

Game companies organizing to keep smut in electronic games

Marriott Hotels asked again to take porn movies out of their hotels

Most happy people are married and/or attend church regularly

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


Washington Watch Daily

Is Congress assuring economic growth, or economic malaise?

Click here to listen

From OnePlace.com


NewsBusted 1/15: Kerry drops Edwards, cheering mauling tiger



NewsBusted is a comedy webcast about the news of the day, uploaded every Tuesday and every Friday.


Obscene Roadways

From Fox News:

It's one thing to dangle fuzzy dice from a rear view mirror, but decorating a trailer hitch with a large pair of rubber testicles might be a bit much in Virginia.

State Del. Lionel Spruill introduced a bill Tuesday to ban displaying replicas of human genitalia on vehicles, calling it a safety issue because it could distract other drivers.

Some people might feel insecure enough about their manhood and potency that they feel the need to hang these things on the back of their truck, and still others might get off in looking at them.

Me, I find them disgusting and obscene. I'm dreading the moment one of my kids (especially my daughter) sees one and asks, "What's that, Dad?"

Safety issue or not, I think they're obscene. And governments have the right to ban what is considered by the average person to be obscene.

The First Amendment was intended to protect free political speech and dissent, not allow some insecure juvenile male to hang a pair of toy testicles of the back of his pickup truck.


Candidates on a Conservative Scale

Dwar at Free Republic has posted some measurements and calculations he's come up to measure the conservative credentials of the Republican field of presidential candidates. You can check it out here.

I think his calculations are pretty accurate...to a point. I'd give them about a 90% accuracy rating, and my only reason for the 10% reservation is that there are always those "intangibles" that defy precise measurement.

For instance, Dwar cuts through the smoke and mirrors from Mike Huckabee on immigration and gives him a well-deserved 2 out of 10.

However, he gives Romney 8 out of 10 in the pro-life and gay rights areas. Based on what Romney's been saying lately, those are probably accurate. However, since he's a recent convert on these issues (and acted like an obedient little boy when the Mass. Supreme Court told him to allow homosexuals to "marry"), let's say my trust in his dedication to these areas is a little shaky.

And there's also the Mormon factor with Romney. Despite the fact that he sounds pretty conservative, if you can take him at his word on some stuff, I have a real reservation about supporting someone who holds to another Gospel and has a savior, the description of whom really doesn't match that of mine: Jesus Christ.

But if you're not sure where the candidats stand on the conservative scale, it's still a useful tool, so go check it out. No surprise to me who came out as the most conservative. What a pity so many people are settling for the menu the "mainstream" media is offering.


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Rocket Science of Abortion


In a post earlier today on Senator Dennis Schmidt's sonogram bill, I said

A sonogram provides more medical information to the mother. Can one make a sound, logical argument against more low-cost medical information in the decision-making process?

Of course, I knew at the time that there'd be some folks who would proffer plenty of shallow arguments...and it didn't take long.

From KELO, our state Planned Parenthood director Kate Looby weighs in:
Looby says legislators should instead spend their time trying to come up with solutions to prevent unintended pregnancies.

Like this takes rocket science. For those who want to reduce the odds of pregnancy, use birth control. Getting the tubes tied or having a vasectomy is more reliable, still. For those who want to be sure of not having an unintended pregnancy, don't have sex. But liberals are experts at making the simple seem complex.

Looby also offers another shallow argument:
She adds that the legislation is another attempt to manipulate women who are already facing very difficult, private decisions.

Yes, a private decision. A decision so private that she needs an abortionist to accomplish it for her. A not-so-private decision that involves the man who helped her conceive the child. Oh, and then there's the child she'll be killing, too. Not too private, when you get down to it.

Only when it comes to defending abortion is less information considered better.


'Living Wage' Bill Introduced in South Dakota Legislature


Well, Senator Tom Katus (Dist. 32) has introduced that "living wage" bill he promised Saturday.

SCR 3 says that

state agency, any municipality, or any other unit of government which offers a tax break, a grant, or other subsidy using state and local tax dollars to require any business which employs more than ten employees as a condition of receiving such governmental assistance to pay its employees at least the same wages and to offer its employees health benefits comparable to those the state agency, the municipality, or other unit of government supporting the new business development offers to its entry-level employees.

I wonder how prolific "tax break, a grant, or other subsidy using state and local tax dollars" situations are. With TIFs and numerous other smaller tax breaks and incentives, I would imagine it's fairly widespread.

I suppose it's a sad reality that if you accept government money, you accept the government strings that come with it. So it's not as egregious as a blanket mandate on all businesses would be.

But I think this is the wrong message for the government to send to the business community, and the wrong attitude for the government to take.

So how do we define what a "living wage" is? I might say it takes $40,000 a year to properly live. Another person might say you can do it on $20,000. Still another might say it takes $120,000 to constitute a "living wage."

This bill defines that loosely as "the same entry wage and health benefits standards as the governmental entity supporting the new business pays and gives its entry-level employees." So does this mean that every time this government agency gives it's employees a taxpayer-funded raise, the business is required to give it's employees a raise? Every time the government agency provides a new taxpayer-funded health benefit, the business is likewise required to add this benefit for their employees?

While the government can essentially increase it's revenue at will (tax hikes), it's not always so easy for businesses. Yes, they can raise the price of their goods or services...but if their competition isn't also raising their prices, guess who's going to get all the customers, and who's going to go out of business?

Will this keep businesses from coming to or opening offices in South Dakota, if they know they might have to pay $2.00, $3.00, $4.00 an hour more than they otherwise might--especially if such a difference would move them from the green into the red?

And what if the employee's labor is only bringing $7.00 an hour in revenue to the business? Can the business afford to pay $11.00 or $12.00 an hour (Katus mentioned a figure of $11.00 and change on Saturday) plus benefits when his employees are only bringing $7.00 an hour in revenue into the company?

And how long is this in effect? Is it only until the "tax break, grant or other subsidy" is exhausted, or is it for the life of the business?

When you add it up, is the "tax break, grant or other subsidy" that the business is receiving from the government going to add up to be worth potentially paying out several more dollars per hour than they might otherwise pay? Than the employee's labor might otherwise be worth?

And if the business is receiving a continual subsidy from the government, and if the extra wages are equal to the amount of this subsidy, then it essentially becomes the government subsidizing a private employee's wages. It becomes more wealth redistribution, since taxpayer dollars are being taken from some taxpayers and given to another taxpayer.

You might be able to make the case that an employer, based on a healthy profit margin, morally should be paying a higher wage because his valuable employees are contributing to that healthy profit margin.

But morally should and legally should usually part ways when no one is being hurt or deprived; morally I should tell my children I love them regularly, but should we pass a law to guarantee that? And since an employee and employer (unless there's government interference) mutually agree to a wage, and an employee is free to leave and go work somewhere else, it can't reasonably be argued that he's locked into a system of deprivation like a slave or serf.

It's wrong for government to be in the business of placing value on the labor of an individual who isn't doing work for the government. The proper parties for establishing the value of labor are the employer and the employee who accepts a certain wage to work for a business. If the employee wants more money than an employer will pay, he can go somewhere else for a job. If the employer needs the labor and expertise a job candidate offers, and he needs it bad enough, he may have to pay a higher wage to get the candidate to agree to work for him. That's how things work in a free market--and in a free society.

This bill is fundamentally wrong and un-American. America was and is based on the idea of limited, minimal government. It is also based on a free market, the freedom of a business to determine the value of labor, and the freedom of people and businesses to negotiate willingly with one another.

This bill uses the power of government to squelch that freedom and force a business to pay compensation based on what the government, which is not involved in the operation of the business, says is right and just and fair.


Tell Me Lies, Tell Me Sweet Little Lies

This one could be interesting to enforce.

From the Rapid City Journal:

It would be illegal to lie or print lies about issues placed on the South Dakota ballot as proposed laws, repeal of existing laws or changes in the state constitution, under a bill that South Dakota lawmakers will deal with this year.

HB1145 would make such falsehoods misdemeanors that could be punished by up to 30 days in jail and $500 fines.

I remember some things being said during the 2006 campaign about rights being lost if certain initiatives passed. No rights had been lost in other states, there was no indication that they would, nor any indication that rights would be lost here. But the parties making those statements could have theoretically been prosecuted under this statute.

I agree with the intent of HB 1145; we should have honest from both sides of an issue, with debate based on the merits of the measure or candidate, without dishonest fear mongering.

The thing is, when the rubber meets the road, questions of what can happen and what will happen can quickly become matters of highly subjective conjecture.


Fetal Sonogram Bill Introducd


KELO is reporting on a bill introduced by Senator Dennis Schmidt (Dist. 33) that would require abortion facilities to provide sonograms to mothers before their children could be aborted.

Introduced Tuesday was a bill that would require abortion facilities to offer sonograms to pregnant women and girls.

SB 88, offered by Republican Sen. Dennis Schmidt of Rapid City, would ban abortions from being done without first offering females the chance to view the ultrasound images of their fetuses.

The list of co-sponsors is actually quite long: Senators Schmidt (Dennis), Albers, Apa, Duenwald, Gant, Gray, Greenfield, Hansen (Tom), Hauge, Hunhoff, Kloucek, Koetzle, Lintz, Maher, McNenny, Peterson (Jim), Smidt (Orville), and Sutton and Representatives Weems, Boomgarden, Brunner, Davis, DeVries, Dykstra, Hackl, Heineman, Howie, Hunt, Jerke, Juhnke, Koistinen, Miles, Moore, Nelson, Noem, Novstrup (Al), Novstrup (David), Olson (Betty), Rausch, Rave, Rhoden, Steele, Van Etten, Wick, and Willadsen.

Short of getting rid of abortion altogether, this is a good move. If mothers are able to see that what is growing inside them is actually a human being, the odds are much greater they will respect human life and not abort the child.

One of the main reasons a civilized nation like the United States can tolerate such a barbaric practice (other than the drive for sexual freedom) is that we tend to keep the question of human life inside the womb academic, rather than allowing a face to be put on it. The sonogram essentially puts a face on the contents of her womb.

A sonogram provides more medical information to the mother. Can one make a sound, logical argument against more low-cost medical information in the decision-making process?


Staph Infection 13X More Likely Among Homosexuals

In addition to the already long list of health risks associated with homosexual behavior, according to NewsMax there is a new one: drug resistant staph infection.

A drug-resistant strain of potentially deadly bacteria has moved beyond the borders of U.S. hospitals and is being transmitted among gay men during sex, researchers said on Monday.

They said methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, is beginning to appear outside hospitals in San Francisco, Boston, New York and Los Angeles.

Sexually active gay men in San Francisco are 13 times more likely to be infected than their heterosexual neighbors, the researchers reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

The findings have been reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine, says Binh Diep, a researcher at the University of California.

Why is it so particularly contagious in the homosexual community?

Of those people who carry staph, most carry it in their noses but community-based MRSA also can live in and around the anus and is passed between sexual partners.

Incidence of MRSA is rising along with the resurgence of syphilis, rectal gonorrhea, and new HIV infections partly because of changes in beliefs about the severity of HIV and an increase in risky behaviors, such as illicit drug use and having sex that abrades the skin, Diep's team wrote.

The article also indicates it's not something to be cavalier about:

This superbug can cause life-threatening and disfiguring infections and can often only be treated with expensive, intravenous antibiotics.

It killed about 19,000 Americans in 2005, most of them in hospitals, according to a report published in October in the Journal of the American Medical Association.


Boy abducted at gun point by Sheriff

"After the raid, a doctor recommended Jon be given fluids, Tylenol and ice to treat the bruises, according to a copy of the child's patient after-care instructions."


Besides the boy's father, the doctor was the only adult to display some sense in this affair. With over 20 years experience in the ER, personally, I would have refused to see the boy without his parent's consent. I really hope that the magistrate, the paramedic, the social worker and the sheriff and deputies all learn the hard way the foolishness of their actions. I am sick of stupid, frivolous lawsuits but this is one I hope gets taken all the way to a very profitable end for this family.


Government Raid to Force Boy to Take Tylenol


A startling incident of the government forcing a medical examination on an 11 year old boy in Colorado has been reported by a number of media outlets including the Washington Times, the Rocky Mountain News, WorldNetDaily, and AP.

It seems that they boy was injured while goofing around, but it was not a life-threatening injury, and the boys' father, a former medic in Vietnam, was treating him.

Apparently a neighbor called paramedics, but the father declined their treatment, which is where the trouble began.

"The paramedics were not at all respectful of Tom's decision, nor did they act in a manner we would expect from professional paramedics," the acquaintance said.

So the ambulance crew, who also could not be reached by WND, called police, only to be told the decision was up to the Shiflett family.

The paramedics then called the sheriff's office, and officers responded to the home, and were told everyone was being cared for.

Then the next day, Friday, social services workers appeared at the door and demanded to talk with John "in private."

They were so persistent Tom ended up having to get John out of the bathtub he was just soaking in, to bring him to the front porch where the social workers could see him, the family reported.

Then, following an afternoon shopping trip to town, the family settled in for the evening, only to be shocked with the SWAT team attack.

The sheriff said the decision to use SWAT team force was justified because the father was a "self-proclaimed constitutionalist" and had made threats and "comments" over the years.

However, the sheriff declined to provide a single instance of the father's illegal behavior. "I can't tell you specifically," he said.

The Washington Times article indicates Social Services sought a warrant from a judge before calling out the assault team.

On one hand, at least Social Services did seek a warrant from a judge, which is more than these jack-booted thugs often do.

The proof in the pudding, however, seems to be in the doctor's "treatment" of the boy after the raid:
After the raid, a doctor recommended Jon be given fluids, Tylenol and ice to treat the bruises, according to a copy of the child's patient after-care instructions.

Wow! Apparently the dad was able to figure that out.

There are times when medical expertise is needed. There are other times when the average human being possesses enough intelligence to assess an injury and take care of it themselves.

This arrogant, elitist attitude from so many in the medical community (my mother works in the medical community, and I have several friends who work in the medical community, so don't get me wrong) is why I avoid doctors when possible. I don't like being treated like a 5 year old. I don't have a medical degree...but I'm not a moron, either.

But apparently this elitist attitude cuts across vocational lines, as paramedics, social services, the courts and law enforcement were all involved in this raid. Though the judge probably didn't have the same firsthand knowledge of the nature of the boys injuries that the paramedics and social workers did, and law enforcement was just executing a court order. But we have to be very careful about trampling parental rights.

On a semi-related issue, this same attitude, both from those in the medical community who foist it on the public, and those in the public who worship doctors as demi-gods, is part of why health care spending is so huge in this country: no one can be trusted to treat a bruise or scratch on their own.

And it's not only turning us into a nation of whining babies, as this incident illustrates, it can quickly turn into an outrageous flirtation with police state tactics.


Arguing for Punishment of Moral Choices

An interesting letter from the Rapid City Journal today on the debate about pharmacists who exercises their right of conscience in dispensing contraceptives and abortifacients.

In moral conviction vs. the law you can’t have it both ways

David Rooks’ Jesuit-like circumlocution about the Broadus, Mont., pharmacist brings him around to precisely where he didn’t intend to be.

He quotes the final words of Sir Thomas More just before his head was lopped off for high treason: “I am the king’s good servant (most scholars say ‘faithful’), but God’s first.”

More, a lawyer and public servant who swore in a public oath to uphold the law whether he liked it or not, chose personal conscience over public loyalty with the full knowledge that whichever choice he made he would suffer.

He knew he couldn’t have it both ways. There are consequences to a personal moral stand which conflicts with the law, though now it is rarely beheading. Lawyers, doctors and clergy face and wrestle with these moral dilemmas every day.

A pharmacist is licensed by the state, upon administration of an oath, to serve the public through the profession as constituted under the law.

If one is unable to do that in good conscience, surrender the license. No one would deny anyone’s right to take a moral stand, but trying to weasel out of the dilemma and have it both ways is dishonorable, unconscionable and in the end, unfaithful.

GRAHAM THATCHER
Rapid City


What is most striking to me about this letter is that the tone throughout this letter indicates Thatcher believes someone SHOULD suffer for making a moral choice.

While suffering is sometimes necessary for making a moral choice, that is not to say this is the natural order, or should be the natural order.

Incidentally, though Thatcher says, "A pharmacist is licensed by the state, upon administration of an oath, to serve the public through the profession as constituted under the law," he seems to be missing the fact that some states have passed laws protecting this exercise of conscience, so the issue falls not only within the bounds of what's moral, but also what's "constituted under the law."

But by making the argument that he does, is Thatcher saying it is good and proper and a part of how things should be that Thomas More was punished for his beliefs? I doubt Thatcher truly believes this, yet this is exactly what Thatcher's letter is saying.

The Europeans who settled American 400 years ago left their homelands because they wanted to be free to make moral decisions...without being punished for it. Was it wrong for the Pilgrims to want the freedom to make moral choices without punishment?

Is Thatcher also saying that people who see an aspect of law which interferes with making the moral decision should just "get out" of their line of work, rather than work to make it more possible to make the moral decision?

For those in government back in the days when slavery was legal in much of the United States, should they have continued to work to end slavery...or should they have just surrendered their office because they "couldn't have it both ways?"

How about those officials who saw segregation as wrong? Should they have just surrendered their positions in the school system and other government positions, rather than working to right a wrong?

Thatcher seriously needs to rethink his position. For if he wants his life to be consistent with what he wrote, then he is expecting, perhaps even asking, to be punished for every decision he makes affirmatively for moral reasons.

Does he really want to live this way? I think it is Thatcher who has brought himself around to a place he doesn't want to be.


 
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