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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?

 

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Saturday, May 03, 2008

Thune, Bush are Right on ANWR

Are you tired of paying through the nose for gas? Are you tired of your hard-earned dollars ending up in some Middle East country that would just as soon see the United States erased as take our money? Are you tired of environmental extremists who can't even stand the thought of responsible domestic energy production? I know I am.

That's why I welcomed the article in the Argus Leader today which stated Senator John Thune supports President Bush's renewed call for drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).

The wildlife refuge has enough oil to provide 1 million barrels a day, Thune said. Even though that is only 5 percent of the 20 million barrels of oil that Americans now use daily, it would help ease prices at the pump, he said. Now that gas prices are so high, lawmakers who voted against opening ANWR to drilling in the past may be open to the idea today, he said. Congress has voted on ANWR legislation five times in the past 10 years but Democrats always stopped it, he said.

While Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth has supported drilling in ANWR, Senator Tim Johnson has opposed it.

About three years ago, I interviewed Mark Mosbrucker, a local man who works on the oil rigs in Alaska most of the year. The area in which he works is not far from ANWR. He said there is very little wildlife in the area to begin with, and most of what animals there are in the area are mostly migratory. Rather than the drilling platforms causing trouble for the wildlife, he said the animals usually come near for shelter and warmth.

Mosbrucker told me the drilling platforms are actually a few feet off the ground, so they leave even less of an impression on the land than one might think.

He told me that in addition to most Alaskans being very eager to see ANWR opened up for drilling, that ANWR would mean more job opportunities for South Dakotans like him who spend a lot of time making good money up there.

Opening up ANWR for drilling, while significant, is only a first step in a much-needed initiative to make greater use of domestic oil resources.

It's time the American people took back our country's natural resources from environmental extremists.


Poll: Only 2.9 Percent of Population Homosexual

CitizenLink from Focus on the Family Action reports on a study done by Hunter College in New York and funded by the Human Rights Campaign, a pro-homosexual advocacy organization.

Despite having been told by homosexual activists and their friends in the "mainstream" media for years that homosexuals make up 10% of the population, this study confirmed what accurate but seldom cited studies have been finding for years: homosexuals make up less than 3% of the population.

Larger numbers are often touted as some sort of sign of legitimacy or correctness. Regardless of the percentage, homosexuality remains an immoral and unhealthy practice because numbers, even a majority, have never equated to something being right.

This means little, but it's nice for a change to see the truth get out--especially when it comes from a source that liberals can't dismiss as conservatively partisan.


Friday, May 02, 2008

McCain is right on health care

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

A gold star to John McCain for his just released plan for reforming American health care.

Analysts will pick apart details and surely will find shortcomings. But directionally, McCain's approach is on the money. Contrary to the vaporous rhetoric of change offered by the Democrats, he has proposed real structural health care reform.

The plan boldly takes on key problems in how we deliver health care that have contributed to out-of-control cost escalation. According to a recent University of Minnesota study, health insurance premiums have increased over recent years ten times faster than personal incomes, and by 30 percent from 2001 to 2005.

The key salvo is aimed at the central pillar of our health care system -- tax-subsidized employer provided health care. About 70 percent of Americans get their health care where they work.

The McCain plan offers a $5,000 tax credit to families and $2,500 to individuals to purchase health care on their own. This would end the inherent inequity of some getting tax-free health care from their employers, but those on their own or working for small businesses having to purchase it with after tax dollars.

It levels the field and relocates the focus of health-care-purchase freedom and responsibility to where it should be -- on individuals.

McCain would further enhance competition and consumer power by ending the 50 separate state fiefdoms and allow the health care market to be open nationwide.

Let's recall that employer provided health care is a happenstance of history. Firms started offering it as a benefit as a way to attract workers during the wage and price controls of World War II. Tax-free health care benefits subsequently were formally codified as part of the IRS code.

Aside from the inequities, the employer-based system has been an engine for driving up costs.

One, the higher your income and tax bracket, the more you're subsidized for your health care. Two, with a third party picking up the costs, consumer power and responsibility is short circuited.

In what other marketplace would you have the equivalent of a doctor prescribing a test and the patient not even thinking to ask if it is really necessary or how much it costs? And, even if they asked, the doctor would have no idea.

We've got a situation now where firms like Wall Street investment bank Goldman Sachs, former employer of our current Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, offers sex change operations as part of their tax-sheltered health care plan.

David Gratzer of the Manhattan Institute points out that the individual out-of-pocket portion of health expenditures dropped from 42 percent in 1960 to 14 percent in 2002. Over the same period, as individuals became increasingly divorced from their own health care realities, per capita health care spending more than quintupled.

Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barrack Obama can't grasp that our perverse health care economics result from over-centralization and bureaucratization, so they propose even more. They put more responsibility on employers and give government an even stronger role to define what health care is and how much it should cost. They propose to lower costs through subsidies financed by massive tax increases.

McCain's approach will use markets and consumer power to drive down costs and open the door to innovation in health care products and delivery.

One such innovation of recent years has been health savings accounts. America's Health Insurance Plans has just reported that the number of these accounts has increased 35 percent over last year. This impressive growth came without the more attractive tax treatment that would be afforded such plans under McCain's proposal. The fastest growing market for health savings accounts are small businesses.

In a just released poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, 44 percent said they'd like to see health care reform moving to individuals making their own purchases, while 43 percent preferred building on the current employer system. Democrats prefer the employer system and Republicans favor individual purchases. Interestingly, Independents favored individual purchases to the employer system, 49 percent to 41 percent.

Difficult issues remain, such as how to deal with those currently uninsured and with pre-existing conditions.

But John McCain has gotten this debate off on the right note. If voters can rise to his standard of boldness and courage, we will make important improvements in American health care.

---------------------------------


Star Parker is president of the Coalition on Urban Renewal & Education and author of the new book White Ghetto: How Middle Class America Reflects Inner City Decay.

Prior to her involvement in social activism, Star Parker was a single welfare mother in Los Angeles, California. After receiving Christ, Star returned to college, received a BS degree in marketing and launched an urban Christian magazine. The 1992 Los Angeles riots destroyed her business, yet served as a springboard for her focus on faith and market-based alternatives to empower the lives of the poor.


Lein Credits Thune, Catches Democrat Ire

The Rapid City Journal is running an AP story featuring Republican U.S. House Candidate Chris Lien crediting Senator John Thune with the greatest effort to get Ellsworth Air Force Base of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) list in 2005.

"Without question, Senator Thune deserves the credit of being the one that took the lead," Lien said. "And you can ask Congresswoman Herseth Sandlin and Senator Johnson, but I would say they'd probably agree."

Lein was probably being gracious or naive when he said Herseth Sandlin would agree (I'd bank on the former), especially since Lein aims to unseat her from the U.S. House in November.

As if on queue, Russ Levsen, Deputy Chief of Staff for Herseth Sandlin, accused Lein of attempting to "rewrite history":
"It's surprising and unfortunate that anybody would try to rewrite history by injecting partisan politics into an effort that was successful largely because it was devoid of politics," Levsen said.

And, of course, the South Dakota Democrat Party mouthpiece, Badlands Blue, is parroting the charge.

While it's undoubtedly true that all three members of South Dakota's congressional delegation worked hard to get Ellsworth off the BRAC list, anyone who watched the process closely in 2005 will recall that it was Thune who led and who went to the greatest lengths to get the job done.

Saving Ellsworth would have been important to Thune under any circumstances. However, since Thune had recently unseated Democrat Senator Tom Daschle, the "loss of influence" in Daschle presumed by some was quickly labeled as the reason Ellsworth went on the closure list.

No one could prove or disprove such a contention (though it makes little sense, since Daschle had not been a member of the party administering the Defense Department), but the accusation was nevertheless quick to come and repeated often. If the closure had become a reality, right or wrong it would have been used as a massive club against Thune when he ran for re-election.

Thune introduced legislation in the Senate to delay BRAC indefinitely, he proposed legal action to halt the closure, he spent a tremendous amount of time talking to the BRAC commission, and he sought expert testimony like that of General Loh who helped convince the BRAC commission of the vital mission of Ellsworth.

When the base was removed from the list, Thune was very gracious and would accept no particular credit for the success; I doubt he would do so even now. And it was a team effort on the part of our congressional delegation.

But it's certainly not improper to credit Thune with taking leadership of the issue. Any objective analysis would reveal that as the truth. Any contention to the contrary might just be, well, some kind of revision...


The Corruption of a Culture

I haven't completely made my mind up whether I'm going to get behind John McCain or whether I may support a third party candidate. If you asked me, my answer would probably vary from day to day, depending on how fresh McCain's flaws were in my mind, or how fresh the profound unfitness of either of the Democrat candidates was in my mind, though I admit I'm leaning in favor of holding my nose and supporting McCain.

Then I get doused with a cold bucket of reality from someone like David Kupelian at WorldNetDaily and the picture suddenly gets a lot clearer, despite McCains liberal tendencies.

Kupelian's "How Hillary will lead America into hell" today examines the wisdom some have proffered about letting the Democrats just have things for four years.

The logic goes that a Democrat congress is going to mess things up to some degree, regardless of who's in the White House (and unfortunately with a RINO like McCain in the White House, things will be more messed up rather than less). Purveyors of this logic say it's better to just let the Dems have the White House, too, so the Democrat Party will take the full blame for the royal mess they'll make, with none falling on the Republicans through the presence of a nominally Republican president.

There's just enough logic to this reasoning to beguile a lot of good people, especially those who have long harbored anger toward John McCain for his many obvious – and sometimes outrageous and even scary – flaws.

However, such analysis is dwarfed and annihilated by a far more devastating factor – something apparently overlooked by just about everyone weighing in on the relative merits of the candidates.

The damage that will occur to America if Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama is elected president will go far beyond what we can rationally anticipate on the policy level.

Kupelian has a powerful point. You have to remember, too, that even though Bill Clinton was poised to take this country down a road to ruin that just might have made Jimmy Carter look competent, he only had two years to get geared up before a Republican congress came in 1994 to put the brakes on his Marxist insanity.

Given that the Republican party is riven with liberalism and ineffectual stupor right now, I don't think we could count on a Republican congress roaring back in 2010 to save our bacon once again. So the Democrats, with both the White House and Congress for 4+ years this time, would be free to do incredible damage to this country.

But while the self-destructive policy agenda of either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama would be bad enough, there may be an even worse toll on our nation than we might think. A toll bad enough to lead Kupelian to pronounce:
Elevating a person like Hillary Clinton to the presidency of the United States will unleash hell in America in a way very few of us can even comprehend, let alone remedy.

Read Kupelian's column to find out what could be so bad for our country. I guarantee you: Kupelian is right.


Support for Elk Point Refinery High in South Dakota

The Argus Leader today features a poll from the Dakota Wesleyan University McGovern Center for Leadership and Public Service which found that 66 percent of South Dakotans support the TransCanada Pipeline and 69 percent support the proposed Hyperion refinery near Elk Point, South Dakota.

It's vital we increase our refining capacity. We haven't built a new refinery in over 30 years, and while improvements in efficiency have increased our output, we're squeezing everything we can out of our existing infrastructure...and need more badly.

The TransCanada oil pipeline can also help with our energy needs, and can help reduce our dependence on oil from volatile Middle East nations, though there are some sticky issues regarding land rights and eminent domain.

I spoke with Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joel Dykstra when he was in Rapid City last week; Dykstra seeks the Republican nomination in June to challenge Democrat Senator Tim Johnson in the November election. One of the things we discussed was energy.

Dykstra spent many years in the oil and gas industry, both here in the United States and overseas, so he knows energy from the inside.

Dykstra told me there are no quick solutions to the energy needs we face, but we need more oil exploration and production in Alaska, the newly discovered tremendous reserves under North Dakota, and offshore. Senator Johnson has opposed solutions like drilling in ANWR.

While we need to eventually move away from hydrocarbons, Dykstra said, right now most of our infrastructure relies on it. He said he supports the proposed refinery at Elk Point.

Still, Dykstra says we should be pursuing greater use of nuclear power. Many nations like Great Britain have made extensive use of nuclear power, but unfortunately some Americans have fears about nuclear power based not in fact, but on old movies like The China Syndrome.

Though reliable solutions are still mostly somewhere down the road, Dykstra also believes we should be working more on renewable energy sources.

He spoke favorably of hydrogen fuel cells, but obstacles still exist; for instance, they don't last as long as we'd like yet, and there aren't sufficient refueling centers along our highways to make widespread use practical yet.

One thing we can't do is continue our head-in-the-sand status quo approach to energy. Congress has been sitting on their collective hands for years, refusing to deal positively with our energy needs.

Though there is plenty of oil left, it doesn't do us much good if we're too afraid to get it out of the ground and refine it into a usable material.

And while you can't drive very far across the English countryside without seeing a nuclear power plant, American nuclear energy exploitation remains stuck in the 1970s.

We can't continue the comfortable lifestyle we've created in America if we let ourselves be afraid to put our natural resources to responsible use. What's more, national defense is at stake if irresponsible energy policy leaves us scrambling for the means to power our military forces.


Curbing the Budget Madness

Will Marshall of the Progressive Policy Institute examines the coming entitlement implosion in the Wall Street Journal today.

With federal deficits high and 77 million baby boomers hitting retirement this year, things are about to get ugly for government, for taxpayers, for everyone.

While bureaucrats might think manufacturing money out of thin air is perfectly natural, the real world doesn't work that way. But Marshall has a plan to try and avert the coming economic disaster:

To this end, members of the Brookings-Heritage Fiscal Seminar, a nonpartisan group of 16 federal budget and policy experts, of which I am member, have hammered out an innovative plan for averting a fiscal meltdown. The basic idea is simple: Take entitlement spending off auto-pilot, and establish a fixed, overall budget for the programs.

Here is how he says the plan would work:
Congress and the president enact explicit, long-term budgets for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. With this one step, entitlements would be forced to compete for budget dollars with other vital national priorities.

Either the trustees or the Congressional Budget Office would review the programs at regular intervals, possibly every five years, to determine whether they stay within their budget. Failure to do so triggers automatic adjustments in benefits, premiums, provider payments, or tax revenues.

It's a good start, especially when we've had nothing but inaction for far too many years.

The best solution would be to fully privatize retirement and health care again, taking all this completely off the plate of the government, and the taxpayers.

Nowhere in our Constitution are things like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid authorized. And since our government is one of limited, enumerated powers, that means these these programs are not only unwise and improperly administered, they're downright illegal.

But at this point, Americans have become so used to handouts and having government manage their lives that it would be small miracle just to see the kind of control and restraint envisioned by Marshall, much less a return to Constitutional government.

There are a couple of reasons socialism doesn't work, and they're the same reasons our socialist programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid aren't working: such schemes ignore human nature, which includes the fact that bureaucracy will never be as efficient as close-to-home personal involvement.

It's time we returned to the traditional wisdom that made the United States the greatest nation on earth...before that is no longer true.


NewsBusted 5/2/2008



Topics in today's show:

--The government admits failure with its "virtual" border fence--duh

--Jimmy Carter negotiates with the terrorist group Hamas

--Over 10,000 pot smokers gather to celebrate their weed in Colorado

--Bomb-sniffing cats?

--No sequel for "An Inconvenient Truth"

--Miley Cyrus to write an autobiography

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

If you like the show, be sure to subscribe!


Winter Storm Hitting the Black Hills Hard

Ah, the beauty of a warm spring morning in May! Somewhere in the world, at least.

The image below is what greeted me when I looked out my back deck this morning. I had to go to the back deck to find a window I could see out of; all the rest were plastered with blown snow and ice.

Pretty much everything in Rapid City and around the Black Hills is shut down, including the airport and Ellsworth Air Force Base. All the major roads are shut down, including I-90, and no travel anywhere is advised.

Despite it all, I love living in the Black Hills!


Video: Hillary Clinton Bill O'Reilly Interview DAY.2 Pt.2


Video: Hillary Clinton Bill O'Reilly Interview DAY.2 Pt.1


Thursday, May 01, 2008

Why Oil is So High

This is a couple of weeks old, but still illustrative of the reasons behind the high cost of oil today.



Josh Landis and Mitch Butler of the "Fast Draw" team take a close look at what determines the price of oil and the impact price fluctuations have on the overall U.S. economy. (CBSNews.com)


Dykstra Senate Campaign Opens Sioux Falls Office

From today's mail bag:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - May 1, 2008
For information contact: Joel Dykstra: 605.764.2008

Sioux Falls, S.D. – The Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce held the official ribbon cutting Thursday, May 1 for the newest Joel Dykstra for U.S. Senate field office in Sioux Falls. Joining U.S. Republican Senate Candidate Joel Dykstra for the official grand opening were members of the Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce, Sioux Falls business representatives and supporters of the campaign.

Dykstra said it was a rewarding day for him and the campaign staff who had been working for several months to advance the campaign to this point. Dykstra said, “The addition of the Sioux Falls office will allow the campaign to establish a base of operations in the middle of the state’s largest population of voters.” Future offices are also in the works, with Rapid City the next on the list.

Michael Bender of Bender Commercial Real Estate Services, speaking on behalf of the Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce, presented a congratulatory plaque and welcomed the campaign into membership. He said, ”We’re pleased that Joel has shown a commitment to the Sioux Falls business community by investing in the chamber and we’re pleased to welcome the campaign offices to Sioux Falls.”

The Dykstra campaign is a flurry of activity right now with the schedule filled by campaign appearances and fundraising has events as the staff and volunteers gear up for the June 3 Primary. Dykstra said he has traveled nearly 60,000 miles to date on the campaign trail attending every Lincoln Day Dinner in the state, holding fundraising meetings in many communities and speaking to a variety of local civic clubs and other groups in an effort to introduce his campaign to the voters and hear from people all around South Dakota.

The Sioux Falls office is located at 2109 South Minnesota Avenue. The campaign will retain its official address at P.O. Box 8, Canton, S.D. 57013 and the main telephone number will continue to be 605-764-2008.


Moral Values Cost $23,000

How much is it worth to you to keep your moral values? Is it worth $23,000?

When Christians express concerns that "hate crime" laws will quash freedom, many in our culture don't think anything like this can happen. They believe the stated intent of "hate crime" laws: to protect from discrimination.

Ignoring for a moment the nonsense of the idea of "hate crime" laws, we are seeing more and more proof that not only are such laws useless in bringing justice, they trample all over the freedoms of others, especially when that freedom involves a person's right not to endorse, support or facilitate something they find immoral.

The situation is getting bad in England, where foster parents had their foster children taken away because they refused to sign "sexual equality" guidelines. Others have objected to the distribution of pro-homosexual literature, only to be warned by the police of flirting with a "hate crime."

Focus on the Family already must not transmit shows on the radio in Canada which discuss homosexuality in a negative light.

Just this week, the Christian Post reported that a Christian ministry in Canada has been fined $23,000 and 2 years wages and benefits for "discriminating" against an employee who violated her work contract:

Connie Heintz claimed discrimination against Christian Horizons after she said she was “subjected to a poisoned work environment” and pressured into quitting her job after she entered a homosexual relationship – which was in violation of her work contract back in 2000.

In line with its Christian foundation and principles, the ministry requires that all its employees sign “morality statements” vowing to abstain from immoral behavior, including pornography, pre-marital, extra-marital, and homosexual activity as a condition of employment.

Heintz obviously knew what behavior was expected of employees of this Christian ministry, and unless I missed it, no one put a gun to her head and forced her to work at this ministry.

Yet the Orwellian thought police in Canada consider it perfectly acceptable to trample on this ministry's religious freedom, freedom of speech and freedom of association.

This kind of thing is already starting to rear it's ugly head in the United States.

Unless good people stand up and say "Enough is enough," this type of politically correct assault on freedom is going to get worse.


Abstinence and the Power of Human Sexuality

As congressional hearings on the effectiveness of abstinence education began a couple of weeks ago, we have been treated to a new round of pronouncements from abortion and sexual license advocates that "abstinence education doesn't work."

The "mainstream" media is, of course, ready as usual to put a microphone or pen in front of "objective" organizations like the Guttmacher Institute (the propaganda arm of Planned Parenthood) who tell of various studies proving abstinence education doesn't work.

But one thing usually overlooked in this discussion is WHY abstinence education may not be working. Another thing often overlooked in the "mainstream" media's rush to bolster it's worldview is evidence that abstinence education is working.

One factor challenging the effectiveness of abstinence programs concerns funding.

In a recent Rapid City Journal article, Kimberly Martinez, executive director of the Abstinence Clearinghouse in Sioux Falls, says contraceptive-oriented sex ed programs receive 12 times the funding abstinence education receives. If you spend 12 times the amount of money teaching kids how to have sex that you do teaching them not to have sex, it stands to reason your sending the message "we expect you to have sex" 12 times more loudly than the message "don't have sex."

But what if, despite this lopsided educational emphasis, abstinence education is working anyway? The Heritage Foundation released a report on April 22 which showed that of 15 abstinence programs examined, 11 of them (or 73%) showed positive results.

Why is abstinence important in the first place? There are many reasons, including avoidance of teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, better mental and emotional stability, greater academic performance, and reduction of poverty. It's difficult to obtain the education necessary to succeed if you become pregnant in high school. Single-parent homes (often the result of sex outside marriage) are seven times more likely to experience poverty than two-parent homes.

One of the programs Heritage examined was the "Reasons of the Heart" program. When compared to the standard family life education which included two videos on HIV/ STD prevention and one on abstinence, Reasons of the Heart found that 9.2% of virgins had initiated sexual activity 1 year after the program, versus 16.4% in the standard program.

"Heritage Keepers" saw 14.5% become sexually active within a year after the program, versus 26.5% for the standard contraceptive-oriented program.

"Abstinence by Choice" saw a rate of 5.9% initiating sexual activity within a year, versus 10.2% for non-participants.

Virginity pledge efforts found that early sexual activity could be reduced by at least one third, and when combined with strong parental discouragement of sexual activity, the reduction rose to 75%.

The role and effectiveness of adult authority figures cannot be understated, as the results of the virginity pledges illustrates. It makes a big difference if parents clearly and consistently stress abstinence as the expectation. When and if that expectation is reinforced by other adult authorities, such as at school, the difference can be even greater.

Unfortunately, the message is usually absent in the educational system, especially in higher education where young people are getting their first taste of freedom and real decision-making.

A piece in the Wall Street Journal today by Donna Frietas entitled "Hook-Up or Shut Up" examines the "hook up" culture where human sexuality has been reduced to "a brief sexual encounter between two partners who don't necessarily know each other before and who don't necessarily want to know each other after. And it's free."

No doubt lurid anecdote and popular myth cause us to exaggerate the actual frequency of campus hook-ups: Most college students do not share in these delights. But most students also believe that "everyone does it," even if the individual student, for some reason, cannot locate a partner. Thus an active minority sets the tone and makes hooking up a "culture." When there are no sexual boundaries, either official or informal, the standard becomes the extreme, and all students feel the pressure to appear more promiscuous than they are. The traditional double standard of sexual conduct – more restrictive for women than for men – has been replaced by the single standard of the predatory male.

For the best efforts of abstinence education, what chance does it have for success in the middle of this atmosphere? Certainly it may help some, but it will be difficult to achieve widespread success when the leaders, the ones who are supposed to be mature adults, stand aside and allow this type of culture, or even encourage it.

Any program or educational effort to promote abstinence will have a tough row to hoe when almost every other area in American culture shouts "Do it!"

Television shows tell kids sexual activity is expected, and there's something wrong with you if you aren't doing it. Movies are sending the same message ("40 Year Old Virgin"). The music industry, from the hardcore rap to rock to country, is telling kids how wonderful it is and painting the picture that they should just "follow your heart." The education system, when it promotes condoms and such, tells kids, "We expect you to have sex." Planned Parenthood tells kids in no uncertain terms they should be doing it, with websites like teenwire.com that explain every area of sexual experience with zero judgments. For years, many churches have been silent on the issue, allowing these other venues of culture to influence youth; now, some churches have even gone over to the dark side and expect kids to do whatever comes to mind sexually.

Only by developing a uniform message from our culture can we expect a dramatic reduction in teen sexual activity. It must begin at home, be reinforced by churches and schools, and viewers and consumers must demand better from the television, movie and music industries.

It won't be easy, but our children deserve better than our cowardice and sloth.

Corrie ten Boom in her autobiography, The Hiding Place, tells a story about when she was a young girl and came across the words "sex sin" in a poem, and when she asked her father about this:

And so, seated next to Father in the train compartment, I suddenly asked, "Father, what is sex sin?"

He turned to look at me, as he always did when answering a question, but, to my surprise, he said nothing. At last he stood up, lifted his traveling case from the rack over our heads, and set it on the floor.

"Will you carry it off the train, Corrie?" he asked.

I stood up and tugged at it. It was crammed with watches and spare parts he had purchased that morning.

"It's too heavy," I said.

"Yes," he said. "And it would be a pretty poor father who would ask his little girl to carry such a load. It's the same way, Corrie, with knowledge. Some knowledge is too heavy for children. When you are older and stronger, you can bear it. For now you must trust me to carry it for you."

When children are old enough, parents should teach them responsibly about sex. They need to know, and parents are the best ones to impart the knowledge.

But thrusting sexuality on young children as we do today, through TV and movies and music and the education system and every other corner of American experience, is burdening them with something that is too heavy for them to bear at that young age. Even in grade school, when their bodies--much less their hearts and minds--are too young for reproduction, we bombard them with sexual images and references and sexy clothing.

Human sexuality, when expressed as designed between a husband and wife, is a beautiful and wonderful thing. But it is a very powerful thing. It affects the mind and emotions in phenomenal ways, and the act contains the awesome power to create human life--with all the responsibilities and implications that come with this. It is far too much to thrust upon young children who aren't even ready to live on their own, much less create and be responsible for new life.

Were there any sense of propriety left in our pop culture, proponents of aggressive sex education should be ashamed of themselves for what they're doing to children.

And in an earlier age more concerned with the welfare of children than with sexual license, they probably would have been charged with abuse of a child.


Remarks by President Bush on National Day of Prayer

WASHINGTON, May 1 /Standard Newswire/ -- The following text is of remarks by President Bush on the National Day of Prayer:

East Room
10:12 A.M.

THE PRESIDENT: Good morning. Welcome to the White House. And I am honored to join you for the National Day of Prayer.

I'm sorry Laura is not here -- she's out selling her book. (Laughter.)

Shirley, thank you very much for being the Chairman of the National Day of Prayer. Glad you brought old Jim with you. (Laughter.) Dr. Zacharias, thank you for being the Honorary Chairman. I appreciate the members of my Cabinet who are here today, thank you all for coming. It's good to see members of the United States Senate and the House of Representatives. Appreciate you all taking time out of your busy schedule to come by. It's always good to be with you.

I want to thank our military chaplains who are with us. Thank you for doing the Lord's work with our troops. I'm proud to have prayer leaders here. Rabbi Fishman, thank you, it's good to see you again, sir. Father Coughlin, from the United States House of Representatives, it's good to see you, sir. I want to thank Pastor Mays, who will be following me here shortly, for coming. I'm looking forward to hearing the choir of Saint Patrick's Cathedral, New York City, New York. It's going to be a great moment to have this East Room filled with the joy of song. So I welcome them here today.

On this day, Americans come together to thank our Creator for our nation's many blessings. We are a blessed nation. And on this day, we celebrate our freedoms, particularly the freedom to pray in public and the great diversity of faith found in America. I love being the President of a country where people feel free to worship as they see fit. And I remind our fellow citizens, if you choose to worship or not worship, and no matter how you worship, we're all equally American. (Applause.)

I think one of the interesting things about a National Day of Prayer is it does help describe our nation's character to others. We are a prayerful nation. A lot of citizens draw comfort from prayer. Prayer is an important part of the lives of millions of Americans. And it's interesting, when you think about our faith you can find it in the Pledge of Allegiance, you can find an expression of American faith in the Declaration of Independence, and you can find it in the coins in our pockets. I used to carry coins -- (laughter) -- in about 10 months I'll be carrying them again. (Laughter and applause.)

The fidelity to faith has been present in our nation's leaders from its very start. Upon assuming the presidency, George Washington took the oath of office and then added the famous plea, "So help me God." On John Adams's first day in the White House, he wrote a prayer that is now etched in marble on the fireplace in the State Dining Room, and he prayed, "May none but honest and wise men ever rule under this roof." Now we'll leave it to the historians to judge whether or not that happened throughout our history. (Laughter.)

During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln turned to prayer. His second Inaugural Address quoted from Scripture. He stood before the United States people and quoted from Scripture. And he sought to heal a people who "read the same Bible and prayed to the same God" -- his words.

As William McKinley lay dying from an assassin's bullet, one of his final words on earth focused on the Almighty. On his deathbed he was heard to say, "Nearer, my God to thee."

As American forces risked their lives on D-Day, Franklin Roosevelt delivered a presidential prayer over the radio. He asked God to protect our troops as they liberated "a suffering humanity" and he prayed for "a peace that will let all men live in freedom." When Roosevelt died, his successor, Harry Truman, said he "felt like the moon, the stars and all the planets" had fallen on him. And he told reporters: "Boys, if you ever pray, pray for me now."

John F. Kennedy attended mass in Florida during the last week of his presidency, and during the last week of his life. It was at that mass that he heard the parable where our Lord compared the Kingdom of Heaven to a mustard seed that grew into a large tree and offered shelter to God's creatures.

Three days after the worst terrorist attack on American soil, Laura and I joined our fellow citizens in prayer before the Lord. It was in the middle hour of our grief. We prayed for those who were missing. We prayed for the dead. We prayed for those who loved them. I recalled the words of a woman from New York, who said, "I prayed to God to give us a sign that He is still here."

Well, sometimes God's signs are not always the ones we look for. And we learn in tragedy that His purposes are not always our own. But we also know that in adversity we can find comfort through prayer.

Over the last seven years, our country has faced many trials. And time and time again we have turned to prayer and found strength and resilience. We prayed with those who've lost everything in natural disasters, and helped them heal and recover and build. We prayed for our brave and brilliant troops who died on the field of battle. We lift up their families in prayer. And as we pray for God's continued blessings on our country, I think it makes sense to hope that one day there may be a International Day of Prayer, that one day the national -- (applause.) It will be a chance for people of faith around the world to stop at the same time to pause to praise an Almighty. It will be a time when we could prayer together for a world that sees the promise of the Psalms made real: "Your love is ever before me, and I walk continually in your truth."

I want to thank you all for coming. Particularly want to thank you for your prayers. You know, somebody asked me one time, when I was there over seeing the Sea of Galilee, they said, what did you think about what you were there, Mr. President? I said I have finally understood the story of the calm on the rough seas. I may have been a little hardheaded at times, but I'm absolutely convinced it was the prayers of the people who helped me understood in turbulence you can find calm and strength. And I thank you for those prayers. (Applause.)

END 10:20 A.M. EDT


Video: Hillary Clinton Bill O'Reilly Interview Pt.2


Video: Hillary Clinton Bill O'Reilly Interview Pt.1


Iran Tops Terrorist Sponsorship List


The latest report on state sponsorship of terrorism is out, according to NewsMax.

"Country Reports on Terrorism," published annually by the State Department, lists Iran as the "most active state sponsor of terrorism." This is the same country working on creating a nuclear program.

From the report:

Iran remained the most active state sponsor of terrorism. Elements of its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were directly involved in the planning and support of terrorist acts throughout the region and continued to support a variety of groups in their use of terrorism to advance their common regional goals. Iran provides aid to Palestinian terrorist groups, Lebanese Hizballah, Iraq-based militants, and Taliban fighters in Afghanistan.

Iran remains a threat to regional stability and U.S. interests in the Middle East because of its continued support for violent groups, such as HAMAS and Hizballah, and its efforts to undercut the democratic process in Lebanon, where it seeks to build Iran’s and Hizballah’s influence to the detriment of other Lebanese communities.

The report also indicts Iran for its involvement in targeting U.S. military forces and Iraqi civilians in Iraq:
Iranian authorities continued to provide lethal support, including weapons, training, funding, and guidance, to some Iraqi militant groups that target Coalition and Iraqi security forces and Iraqi civilians

Fellow Axis of Evil member Syria also makes the list once again:
Since Syria’s 1979 designation as a state sponsor of terrorism, it has continued to provide political support to Palestinian terrorist groups. Syria has also continued to provide political and material support to Hizballah since that group's creation. HAMAS, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PLFP), and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command (PFLP-GC), among others, all have offices in Damascus and operate within Syria's borders. The Syrian government insisted that the Damascus-based groups are confined to political and informational activities, but Palestinian groups with leaders in Syria have claimed responsibility for anti-Israeli terrorist attacks.

As in 2006, President Bashar al-Asad expressed public support for Palestinian terrorist groups.

The brutal communist regime of North Korea received the cleanest terrorism prognosis of any member of the Axis of Evil:
It said North Korea "was not known to have sponsored any terrorist acts since the bombing of a Korean Airlines flight in 1987" but it still "harbored four Japanese Red Army members who participated in a jet hijacking in 1970."

We can't wait for these threats to come and visit us...unless we want another 911, perhaps a nuclear one next time.


Ellsworth Airman Killed in Afghanistan

The Rapid City Journal and other news agencies are reporting the death of an Ellsworth Air Force Base airman, Senior Airman Jonathan Yelner, in Afghanistan.

Senior Airman Jonathan Yelner, 24, of Lafayette, Calif., was assigned to the 28th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron at Ellsworth as a weapons loader and was serving with the 755th Air Expeditionary Wing at Bagram.

Few details have been released, but reports say he was killed when his vehicle hit an improvised explosive device near the base in Afghanistan.

Our sympathies and prayers go out to the friends and family of SrA Yelner and all who knew him at Ellsworth and Bagram.

His service to his country, and his deep sacrifice, are greatly appreciated.


National Day of Prayer Proclamation by President Bush

National Day of Prayer, 2008

A Proclamation by the President of the United States of
America

America trusts in the abiding power of prayer and asks for the wisdom to discern God's will in times of joy and of trial. As we observe this National Day of Prayer, we recognize our dependence on the Almighty, we thank Him for the many blessings He has bestowed upon us, and we put our country's future in His hands.

From our Nation's humble beginnings, prayer has guided our leaders and played a vital role in the life and history of the United States. Americans of many different faiths share the profound conviction that God listens to the voice of His children and pours His grace upon those who seek Him in prayer. By surrendering our lives to our loving Father, we learn to serve His eternal purposes, and we are strengthened, refreshed, and ready for all that may come.

On this National Day of Prayer, we ask God's continued blessings on our country. This year's theme, "Prayer! America's Strength and Shield," is taken from Psalm 28:7, "The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped." On this day, we pray for the safety of our brave men and women in uniform, for their families, and for the comfort and recovery of those who have been wounded.

The Congress, by Public Law 100-307, as amended, has called on our Nation to reaffirm the role of prayer in our society by recognizing each year a "National Day of Prayer."

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 1, 2008, as a National Day of Prayer. I ask the citizens of our Nation to give thanks, each according to his or her own faith, for the freedoms and blessings we have received and for God's continued guidance, comfort, and protection. I invite all Americans to join in observing this day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand eight, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-second.

GEORGE W. BUSH


Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Testimony of a Former Abortion Clinic Owner

LifeSiteNews features the testimony of Carol Everett, a former abortion clinic owner who now works to stop abortion and help men and women who have been hurt by abortion.

At a recent luncheon hosted by United Methodist pro-life ministry Lifewatch, Everett provided a glimpse inside the abortion industry:

In order to sell as many abortions as possible the telephone "counselors" at Everett's clinics were trained to lead distraught women callers to think that there is only one solution to their unwanted pregnancy, and then to assure women that their child is only a "blob of tissue" and that the procedure itself will be basically painless.

"I cannot tell you one thing that happens in an abortion clinic that is not a lie."

You can read Everett's story, and how she got out of the abortion industry at Priests for Life.

I remember hearing a speech on Focus on the Family given by Everett back in the mid-1990s where she told this story--and more. At the time I heard this, I had recently changed from being pro-abortion to pro-life, so it was particularly impactful to me to learn some more of the disturbing details of what I had been supporting.

South Dakotans will get a chance to vote for or against abortion this November with Initiated Measure 11, a pro-life measure brought by over 46,000 petition signatures from the people of South Dakota to end 98% of the abortions performed in the state.

If you are a South Dakotan, what will you choose to uphold on November 4: life or death?


Secular Holy Days: A Contradiction?

This seems a bit of a contradiction: secularist holidays.

We get our word "holiday" from the old English hālig and dæg, or "holy day."

But according to the Washington Times, atheists want their own "holy days."

Matt Cherry, executive director of the Institute for Humanist Studies, said his group is trying to expand options and alternatives for secular holidays.

A secular holy day? Contradiction in terms?

Secularist Cherry doesn't believe so:
"Some religious holidays are about culture and tradition, not theology," he says. "Even people who go to church only on Christmas or to synagogue on the High Holidays do so out of cultural heritage, not because they believe the religious doctrines associated with it."

He has a point. However, the sad reality that some people don't honor the significance of the holiday doesn't in any way change the fact that they holy day was set aside for a specific honor--and that many still do honor it.

Some of the holy days that secularists would like to see include Darwin Day and one called Festivus:
The site also breaks down the customs of Festivus, the holiday popularized by Jerry Stiller on "Seinfeld." In that episode, a Festivus pole is plain aluminum, made to contrast with the ornate Christmas trees; the official greeting is "Happy Festivus"; and each person complains to family and friends how they have disappointed the complainer in the past year.

I think it's a hilarious idea. It also serves to contrast the difference between secularism and Christianity: a stark, bare metal pole versus the full and festive air of the celebration of the birth of Christ.

Really, I think atheists are just jealous. To me, it boils down to one simple conclusion: secularists want to have their cake and eat it, too.

But what else is new? Secularists want to enjoy the fruits that a society of moral, objective-values-oriented people produce--the United States is the prime example--but without the restraint of those objective values.

When you start basing your morality on subjective values, the logical endgame is that the people with the most power get to define what's right and what's wrong.

Are you ready to live in that kind of world? You might think you are, but consider: what if someone else with more power and influence than you decides they don't agree with your definition of what's right and what's wrong? You may quickly find yourself on the outside looking in...and it may be pretty cold and unfriendly out there...


Noble Eagle Protecting America

Fox News flies aboard an F-16 in recognition of the 1 millionth mission of Operation Noble Eagle.


Dakota Voice Garners International Attention

I received a message this morning from the BBC in London, wanting an interview with me regarding some of my posts about Barack Obama and my doubts that he really didn't know about his pastor's radical opinions. The interview was intended for one of their live shows scheduled for early this afternoon.

I turn down most requests for interviews since I often sense the "mainstream" media is just looking to do a hit piece on Dakota Voice or on conservatism in general, but I didn't get that sense here.

Unfortunately by the time the message was passed along to me, the show was already over, so I missed my chance to connect with some of my old friends in England.

I considered it noteworthy that a little ole blog from South Dakota managed to capture the interest of the BBC, so please forgive me if this moment of indulgent preening seems a little crass.

Cheers!


Expelled II: No Cooling Allowed?

By now you've probably heard of Ben Stein's movie "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed" and the intellectual lockdown perpetrated by apostles of evolution theory.

Well, origins may not be the only area where adherents to one scientific theory are orchestrating an Orwellian effort to silence the opposing view. Climate research seems to be the latest front where opposition to the dominant theory is declared verboten and quashed by the establishment.

From Fox News comes the story of Dr. William Gray, a hurricane forecaster, says Colorado State University will no longer be promoting his forecasts because he's not a "believer" in Al Gore's man-made global warming fantasy.

The university says it is cutting back because of resource constraints, but Gray and others insist the move is ideologically driven:

"Bill Gray has come under a lot of fire for his views," former director of the National Hurricane Center Neil Frank, currently chief meteorologist at Houston's KHOU-TV, told the Chronicle. "If, indeed, this is happening, it would be really sad that Colorado State is trying to rein in Bill Gray."

Gray isn't the first to be censured for blasphemy against anthropogenic global warming. Last year, University of Washington climate scientist Mark Albright was fired from his position as associate state climatologist after he exposed false claims of shrinking glaciers in the Cascade Mountains.

As in the debate over origins, the Left seems incapable of (or unwilling to) distinguishing the difference between objective facts and the interpretation of those facts. These so-called scientists develop a theory, find a way to make the facts fit their theory, and call it "science."

If there is any area of scientific inquiry more devoid of objective proof and filled with ideology than origins, it may well be climate research.

Contrary to a mountain of evidence that the climate change has been happening for thousands of years or longer, and is happening on other planets where there are no SUVs, and is based on unreliable data, claim that any warming of the earth cannot be laid at the feet of the sun or natural cycles, but at the feet of SUVs, power plants and Western civilization.

If things continue, Stein may need to do a sequel to Expelled.


Observances of National Day of Prayer Defended by ADF

ADF Media Relations | 480-444-0020

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Alliance Defense Fund attorneys sent an informational letter last week to nearly 1,200 of the nation’s largest cities, advising them of their constitutional right to recognize and participate in the 2008 National Day of Prayer Thursday. ADF attorneys will also be available to defend, free of charge, any municipality that is threatened with legal action for observing the event.

“Americans shouldn’t be forced to abandon their religious heritage simply to appease someone’s political agenda,’” said ADF Chief Counsel Benjamin Bull. “The U.S. Supreme Court has acknowledged that public prayer is ‘deeply embedded in the history and tradition of this country.’ The National Day of Prayer has been a part of that. That is why ADF attorneys stand ready to defend the right of millions of Americans who wish to join together in prayer on May 1 without fear of legal attack from those who seek to silence their constitutional right to pray.”

A national day of prayer was unofficially established more than 200 years ago by President George Washington, who in 1795 issued a proclamation setting aside Feb. 19 as a day of public thanksgiving and prayer. In 1952, President Harry S. Truman established a national day of prayer via a joint resolution of Congress. Thirty-six years later, President Ronald Reagan amended and signed a law permanently designating the first Thursday in May as the National Day of Prayer.

“Public officials and citizens throughout our country need to be encouraged and reminded that they can and should resist the increasingly radical demands of secularist groups to censor public prayer,” said Bull. “The Constitution protects public officials who choose to invoke divine guidance and blessings upon their work and our nation.”

More information on National Day of Prayer observances can be found at www.ndptf.org. A copy of the ADF informational letter is available at www.telladf.org/UserDocs/NDPLetter2008.pdf.

ADF is a legal alliance defending the right to hear and speak the Truth through strategy, training, funding, and litigation.


National Day of Prayer Events

Tomorrow is the National Day of Prayer, the day set aside for Americans to pray for our nation.

The tradition of a National Day of Prayer goes back to 1775 as the Colonies moved toward independence from Britain, and our nation has been holding an annual National Day of Prayer since 1952 when President Harry Truman and Congress established the event as law.

President' Bush's proclamation can be read here.

South Dakota's proclamation by Governor Mike Rounds can be read here.

You can find information on events in your area here. Cities and areas in South Dakota featuring National Day of Prayer observances include Lead, Deadwood, Blackhawk, Elkton, Faith, Flandreau, Hill City, Hot Springs, Huron, Keystone, New Effington, Pierre, Pine Ridge, Platte, Rapid City, Sioux Falls, Spearfish, Union Center, Wessington Springs, and Yankton. Some locations, including Rapid City, will have multiple events throughout the day.

Now more than ever, our nation needs prayer. Our nation has a long tradition of turning to God in prayer during times of war and conflict. Right now, a war of values, a war of worldviews is raging across our country. In a way not seen since the Civil War threatened to tear our union apart, our freedom and identity as a nation is threatened.

Some want to trade in the worldview that made the United States the greatest, most free nation on earth in exchange for a worldview based on the whim of the moment and the morality of whoever is strong enough to be in charge--a worldview that has proven destructive and deadly by the millions around the world.

Only God can turn around this slide into the abyss. And only a people yearning for deliverance, repentant for sin and wanting to change, can call upon God to turn it around.

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. - 2 Chronicles 7:14


This Day in History: Louisiana Purchase

American Minute from William J. Federer

The size of the U.S. doubled APRIL 30, 1803, with the Louisiana Purchase.

Nearly a million square miles, at less than three cents an acre - it was the greatest land bargain in history!

President Thomas Jefferson commented on it in his Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1805: "I know that the acquisition of Louisiana has been disapproved by some from a candid apprehension that the enlargement of our territory would endanger the union, but who can limit the extent to which the federative principle may operate effectively?"

For fifteen million dollars, France sold its land west of the Mississippi, called the Louisiana Territory, because Napoleon Bonaparte needed money quickly for his military campaigns.

Napoleon fought in Europe, Egypt and Russia, but was finally exiled to the island of Elba. Napoleon returned to rule France again for 100 days, but after losing at Waterloo in 1815 he was banished to the tiny island of St. Helena in the South Atlantic, where he commented to General Count de Montholon: "Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, and myself founded empires; but upon what foundation did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force! But Jesus Christ founded His upon love; and at this hour millions of men would die for Him."


William J. Federer is a nationally recognized author, speaker, and president of Amerisearch, Inc, which is dedicated to researching our American heritage. The American Minute radio feature looks back at events in American history on the dates they occurred, is broadcast daily across the country and read by thousand on the internet.


Axis of Evil is Busy

If you're a patriotic American who greatly values our freedom, security and safety, you really have to wonder if and when our government will get its act together and deal with some serious threats.

Remember seven years ago when President Bush spoke of the "Axis of Evil"? That axis included Iraq, North Korea, and Iran; later that year, Syria was added to the "axis of evil," a group of nations seeking weapons of mass destruction, or pursuing terrorism, or both.

Well, here we are seven years later...and we've only dealt with one of those four threats. We did well with the first phase of taking out Iraq as a threat, but became bogged down with mismanagement of internal security, and were undermined by liberal elements internationally and here at home.

Meanwhile, Iran, Syria and North Korea have been busy funding terrorism and working on weapons of mass destruction.

Last September, Israeli warplanes struck a mysterious facility in Syria. At the time, both Israel and Syria denied any action; several days later, Syria reluctantly admitted a strike against one of their facilities, but few details came out at the time.

Muted speculation followed that the facility might have been nuclear, and that some leaked intel indicated a ship from North Korea had docked in the Med and a shipment from that boat went directly to this facility.

Now it's come out that this was indeed a nuclear facility in Syria. Further, Koreans were observed in and around the facility, the facility which bears striking engineering similarities to the reactor being built in North Korea. Intelligence estimates believe the Syrians were weeks or months from completing a reactor able to produce enough material to build 1-2 nuclear weapons a year.

But Syria and North Korea aren't the only belligerent nations trying to obtain nuclear weapons. Iran is busy working on "the bomb," too.

Despite a fair amount of muddled grumbling on the part of the West (muddled grumbling is always pretty intimidating), Iran is defiantly pursuing nuclear capability. In fact, today the New York Times features several photographs released by Iran of their nuclear facility.

Even the Times admits:

By this analysis, the move trumpets Iran’s defiance of the West and the United Nations Security Council, which has imposed three rounds of sanctions on Tehran for its refusal to halt the uranium enrichment.

But the threat to the United States from Iran isn't only a "future" problem; it's a "now" issue.

Just a few months ago, we had threatening actions from Iranian boats against U.S. navy warships.

Further, Iran is waging war against the U.S. inside Iraq. From the Wall Street Journal last Friday:
The U.S. military says it has found caches of newly made Iranian weapons in Iraq, leading senior officials to conclude Tehran is continuing to funnel armaments into Iraq despite its pledges to the contrary.

Officials in Washington and Baghdad said the purported Iranian mortars, rockets and explosives had date stamps indicating they were manufactured in the past two months. The U.S. plans to publicize the weapons caches in coming days. A pair of senior commanders said a presentation was tentatively planned for Monday.

Iran is also providing other aid to terrorists in Iraq, and is behind a lot of the terrorism which is taking the lives of American soldiers in Iraq.

Such actions could be considered an act of war by a nation with greater moral fortitude. But after five years of being undermined by some of our "allies" internationally and some of our own Americans here at home, the odds are the United States won't do anything about these emerging and serious threats...and Iran is counting on that assumption.

The saying goes that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. The world has ample and bloody illustrations from which to learn, yet we never seem to.

In the days and years leading up to World War II, as Hitler violated the Treaty of Versailles and began arming Germany, the free world did nothing. As the Axis gobbled up Czechoslovakia, Holland, Belgium, Norway and the Baltic States, the allies did little or nothing. Appeasement proved worthless, and still there was no action until the wolf was on the doorstep.

Is America prepared to allow the wolf onto our doorstep? This time, the wolf will come in civilian clothes, armed as a terrorist, striking on our home soil. This time the wolf may be armed with nuclear weapons, and possibly chemical and biological agents.

Will we learn from history, or are we doomed to repeat the catastrophic destruction of World War II?


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Video: Obama Says Pastor Doesn't Speak for Him

Part 1:



Part 2:



Part 3:


How are Abortions Performed?

Since we'll be voting on abortion in South Dakota in a few months, a wise and informed people should want to know exactly what it is we're voting for or against.

Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, illustrates a couple of types of abortions in these videos.

The videos are not graphic, but they are descriptive. Think about these procedures in the months ahead as you consider your vote in November on Initiated Measure 11.

Suction Abortion



Fr. Frank shows the instruments of suction abortion and challenges abortion supporters. See the medical diagram of this procedure at http://www.priestsforlife.org/resources/medical/suctionweb.jpg

Dismemberment Abortion




Fr. Frank shows the instruments of dismemberment abortion and challenges abortion supporters. See the medical diagram of this procedure at http://www.priestsforlife.org/resources/medical/de.jpg


NewsBusted 4/29/2008



Topics in today's show:

--15% of American adults admit they've driven under the influence of alcohol

--Exposed: Barack Obama's campaign blogger outed as a fan of Marx.

--Alicia Keyes claims rap music is a grand conspiracy to get black people to kill each other

--Time mag takes heat for mocking vets with an Earth Day cover

--American Idol's ratings start to drop

--Flavor Flav's new sitcom debuts to pretty good ratings

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

If you like the show, be sure to subscribe!


Monday, April 28, 2008

Hannah Montana Growing Up Too Fast

If you have a young daughter who's into "Hannah Montana" actress Miley Cyrus, you might want to check this out. The 15 year old had a racy photo shoot recently.

Is this the example we want our daughters to follow?


Runaway Food Prices


How to Lower Gas Prices

We can lower gas prices in these five ways:

1) Understand the cause of high prices
2) End domestic drilling restrictions
3) Allow refineries and nuclear plants
4) End expensive and wasteful mandates
5) Let the free market develop energy alternatives


Rev. Wright Supporting McCain Campaign

Is Rev. Jeremiah Wright determined to scuttle Barack Obama's chances to win the Democrat presidential nomination? With his inability to quiet his Afrocentrism and loathing for America, it would seem so. I don't know if he could do more to aid the McCain campaign, even if he tried.

After Wright's extreme views came to light a month or more ago, he eventually distanced himself from Obama's campaign and disappeared from the limelight for a while, leading us to believe that Obama might recover from his association with such a racist, anti-American pastor.

Then Wright popped up in an interview with ultra-Leftist "journalist" Bill Moyers last week, perhaps hoping to apply a little polish to his own tarnished image, and maybe Obama's too. Since a Leftist could have no better ally in the media than Moyers, perhaps Wright should have stopped there.

But he didn't. Apparently Wright hasn't learned what every successful liberal in public life has learned: to mask his liberal leanings and appear "moderate."

It appears Wright is playing the classic race card, claiming the criticism of his extreme rhetoric isn't an attack on him, but on the "black church."

The last time I checked, the only church that might be said to be "under attack" in connection with Wright is his former church, which had Afrocentric and black liberation material posted on the church website; some of it has been taken down since this controversy erupted.

Further, prominent black minister Bishop E.W. Jackson Sr. said, "I must take a stand against heresy masquerading as Christianity. It is not the media - whether Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Fox News or anyone else - which has attacked the black church. It is Jeremiah Wright who has attacked and undermined the black church. The media has simply done its job of reporting the outrageous anti-American, anti-Christian and unpatriotic statements of Rev. Wright."

Jackson continued: "Rev. Wright does not represent the Biblical Christianity of the black church, and it is presumptuous for him to suggest that he does."

Apparently it isn't simply a bunch of evil or stupid white people who simply don't understand the nuances of "black" preaching styles.

In addition to the Wrights comments highlighted a few weeks ago where he called on God to "damn America," Wright has fresh indictments to make against his country.

From Fox News:

“Jesus said do unto others as you would have them do unto you. You cannot do terrorism on other people and expect it never to come back on you."

So Wright is now saying that the United States is perpetrating terrorism?

More:
Wright also faced a question about his patriotism.”I served six years in the military. Does that make me patriotic?” he asked. “How many years did (Vice President Dick) Cheney serve?”

Benedict Arnold served in the military, yet he betrayed his country. Aldrich Ames served in the CIA, but betrayed his country. Robert Hanssen served in the FBI, but betrayed his country. I'm not saying Wright is in the league of these men; what I am saying is that service to ones country doesn't mean a person can't turn on their country later, and it doesn't purchase a free pass from scrutiny.



More comments from one of Wright's past sermons has also come to light:
“We cannot see how what we are doing is the same thing that Al Qaeda is doing under a different color flag, calling on the name of a different God to sanction and approve our murder,” Wright said in the April 13, 2003, sermon. “Remember it was soldiers of the 3rd Marine Regiment of Rome who had fun with Jesus who was mistreated as a prisoner of war, an enemy of the occupying army stationed in Jerusalem to insure the mopping up action of Operation Israeli Freedom.”

Again we see the honorable actions of the United States military compared to bloodthirsty terrorists who deliberately target civilians.

Wright might also check his history: while the Roman army was the tool which carried out the crucifixion of Christ, the crucifixion was done at the insistence of the Sanhedrin and the mob they stirred up.



No one can deny that black people got a raw deal throughout most of American history. It should be remembered, however, that more white Americans died in the war that set the black slaves free than in any other American war. And man white Americans fought alongside black Americans to end segregation in the 1960s; interestingly, a greater proportion of Republicans voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 than Democrats.

It's time to move on. It's time to hold individuals and institutions responsible for discrimination, and stop painting an entire skin color with a broad brush similar to the one used against blacks in the past. It's time for all of us to take responsibility for the fruition of Martin Luther King Jr's dream, and start judging not on the color of our skin but the content of our character.

And it's time to quit dishonoring the efforts of our heroes to protect America and promote peace and freedom in the world. It's time to stop encouraging barbaric terrorists and time to get on the side of the good guys.

Can you do that, Rev. Wright? Can you do it for your own sake? Can you do it for the sake of Barack Obama and his association with you? Can you do it simply because it's the right thing to do?


The Bible and Capitalism

The radio ministry Probe has a good series on The Bible, Economics and Capitalism. You can read the text here, or listen to the multi-part audio presentation here; it's about 12 minutes long.

It provides good Biblical insight on our free market system of economics.


Church to God: Like it or Lump It

Human arrogance and idiocy never ceases to amaze me.

From The Times, people in Switzerland are flocking to churches to get divorced, and the clergy is now working on an official liturgy for divorce ceremonies.

Huh?

I see a role for the church in joining people in marriage, but nowhere in the Bible do I see a role for the church in legitimizing or facilitating divorce that isn't justified by the limited Biblical grounds.

Here's the hubris that amazes me:

The president of the Zurich Reform Church, Ruedi Reich, said: “Going through a ceremony like this is a way of showing God that the marriage is over.”

We're going to "show God"?

Like God would get confused without this divorce liturgy? Like He wouldn't know?

Like we get to tell God, "Yeah, we know you said, 'At the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.' But we say the marriage is over, God. So just deal with it!"

If we're going to display such disregard for God in the first place, why do we feel the need to be comforted by this bit of religious ceremony?

Is it that we still feel the need to fool ourselves into believing God approves of our actions (and this bit of church ceremony can provide that illusion), even though God made it clear he DOESN'T?

Our capacity for self-delusion is truly stunning!


When Government Encourages Blight

South Dakota legalized video lottery in 1989. Since then, the gaming has brought a steady stream of revenue ($110 million a year in 2006)...and a steady stream of broken lives and societal ills.

Video lottery has been called "the crack cocaine" of gambling because of its highly addictive nature.

A study conducted by Mountain Plains a few years ago found that for every $1 million spent on video lottery we "buy" 172 crimes as a result. These crimes range from burglary and bad checks, to child neglect when parents leave children unattended or let them go hungry while the addiction is fed.

Gambling addiction also has an adverse impact on the economy, with 41.9% of gamblers reporting absences from work for gambling related activities. The average missed time is three days per month.

In 2007, South Dakota budgeted $244,000 to help pay for gambling addiction treatment.

Interestingly, we had an illustration about 14 years ago of the power of video lottery addiction. For 100 days, video lottery in South Dakota was shut down while the South Dakota Supreme Court declared the practice unconstitutional; voters subsequently approved a constitutional amendment reauthorizing video lottery.

A report entitled “Video Lottery and Treatment for Pathological Gambling: A Natural Experiment in South Dakota” published in January 1996 in the South Dakota Journal of Medicine, calls the 100-day 1994 shutdown of video lottery a “natural experiment” where treatments for gambling addiction dropped 93.5%.

The state of South Dakota quickly became as addicted to the revenue stream from video lottery--as addicted as many of the gamblers themselves. With fears fueled about lost government services and the specter of an income tax raised, the four attempts to end video lottery in South Dakota have failed.

Now the Argus Leader brings the report that Sioux Falls wants to close a loophole that allows video lottery within 2,000 feet of parks or schools. However, the state government is telling the city of Sioux Falls they have no power to regulate video lottery in their own jurisdiction.

According to the article, Sioux Falls passed an ordinance in 2001 prohibiting video lottery within 2,000 feet of schools and parks, but gambling establishments found a loophole involving liquor licenses. The city council now wants to close that loophole.

But in a letter to City Attorney Gary Colwill last week, Secretary of Revenue Paul Kinsman warned that only the state can regulate video lottery.

"In sum, it is the state's position that the city of Sioux Falls does not have the legal authority under the South Dakota Constitution to regulate video lottery as it attempts to do in the proposed ordinance," Kinsman wrote.

The article says Aberdeen went through a similar experience this year and was smacked down by the state.

The article indicates Sioux Falls may take the issue to court, and some think the city has a pretty good chance of winning.

The rule of law is important. But if the rule of law is preventing a municipality from protecting its citizens, the rule of law should be changed.

Knowing how long legal processes can take, changing existing law may be quicker and less expensive than going to court. This may be something the legislature should look at taking up in next year's session.

We don't need need video lottery parlors near schools and parks, normalizing and enticing young people toward this destructive behavior. And we don't need people leaving casinos drunk--driving or walking--near schools and playgrounds.

It seems the city council of Sioux Falls is trying to protect people, but the state is trying to tie their hands in order to guard its revenue "fix."


Joel Dykstra Appearances This Week

From today's mailbag:

For Immediate Release – April 28, 2008
Contact: Joel Dykstra
(605) 764-2008
info@joeldykstraforsenate.com

UPDATE: Dykstra Speaks at Lincoln Day Dinners in Oacoma and Lemmon, Sioux Falls Chamber to Hold Ribbon Cutting for New Campaign Field Office on Thursday

Sioux Falls, S.D. -- Republican U.S. Senate Candidate Joel Dykstra will be speaking at Lincoln Day Dinners in Oacoma and Lemmon this week. The Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce will be holding a Ribbon Cutting for the new Dykstra for Senate field office on Thursday. On Friday, Dykstra will participate in the dedication and opening of the Pope John Paul II Exhibit in Rapid City. Dykstra will also continue to hold various campaign and fundraising meetings throughout the week.

Dykstra will be available for interviews with the media at or prior to any of these campaign stops.

Event details, times and locations follow:

Monday, April 28, 2008
Brule/Lyman County Lincoln Day Dinner
Cedar Shore Resort
Oacoma, S.D.
6:00 p.m. Social, 7:00 p.m. Dinner


Thurday, May 1, 2008
Sioux Falls Chamber Ribbon Cutting
Dykstra for Senate Office
2109 South Minnesota Ave.
Sioux Falls, S.D.
11:30 a.m.


Friday, May 2, 2008
A Blessing to One Another: Pope John Paul II Exhibit
629 Main Street
Rapid City, S.D.
12:30 p.m. (Mountain Time)


Saturday, May 3, 2008
Perkins County Lincoln Day Dinner
Lemmon Community Center
Lemmon, S.D.
6:00 p.m. Social, 7:00 p.m. Dinner (Mountain Time)

CONTACT: Joel Dykstra
Joel Dykstra for U.S. Senate
P.O. Box 8
Canton, SD 57013
(605)764-2008
http://www.joeldykstraforsenate.com/


 
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