Saturday, November 29, 2008

More On Change

Some time ago, Big Jay suggested I post about changes I believe will happen under President Obama. Given the fact he'll have a very cooperative Congress, I think we will see some rather large changes. Jay did a great job of outlining some changes he expects and hopes to see in this post. One of the things that's held me back on posting my own is that I wasn't sure what I could add, so at least part of what I write will be a response to his post. Jay is also much more concise than I am, but I hope the following will be worth your time.

Changes I Think We'll See:

I believe Obama really will try to implement a civilian security force built on a core of his most ardent socialist supporters. From a speech he gave in July: "We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded." While it's clear we can't afford a structure "just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded" as our military, he'll build something, and I anticipate them being used to shut down opposition, much as Wilson Woodrow did with his thug squads.

I believe we will see a reintroduction of the Fairness Doctrine, a misleadingly named regulation that would end the profitability and thus viability, of talk radio. The legislation will be constructed such that conservatives will be powerless to demand equal time on PBS, NPR, MSNBC or other unabashedly liberal outlets.

I believe the divide between conservatives and liberals will become critical, perhaps degenerating into actual violence. If the lead up to the election was any indication, both parties have learned that keeping the nation ideologically divided prevents us from focusing on our real problem: them. The differences between the two major parties are now little more than window dressing, and if the average American realizes it, a viable third party might actually put them out of business. I would much prefer to see Americans talk to each other without rancor and discover how very popular moderate philosophy is, whether it leans a bit left or a bit right. I have long hoped we'll see more unity (see this post for details), but doubt that will happen.

Jay felt oil companies would find it harder to do business in America, and I think that's true, but would expand it: I believe all companies will find it harder to do business in America. This is directly linked to the next point.

I believe we'll see serious tax increases in America as Congress tries to pay for promised but impossible to fund programs. This is already happening in California, causing people who can to flee to other States, much as has happened in Massachusetts and New Jersey. Obama's promise to lower taxes for 95% of Americans was a flight of fancy (see the WSJ article on it here). That simply won't be affordable. If he wants to prevent outcry, he'll wait for the tax reductions put in under Bush to expire in 2010, giving us back the Clinton Tax rates. See this post for why I think that's a problem. By the way, the rhetoric about taxing the "wealthiest Americans"? What the politicians don't tell you is that the people they're talking about aren't just people, but also small businesses which have incorporated and filed a "Small Business Election" with the IRS. That means they're taxed at the same rate as individuals. Raise the taxes on small business, and they'll have less money to invest in continued growth, which will cause even more job losses than we've already seen. I would really like to digress further on this one, but will avoid it. Suffice it to say I think raising taxes is a bad idea and massively cutting Federal spending is a much better solution to the problem.

I think we'll see many, many Obama supporters who didn't really know what they were voting for and have unrealistic expectations will be sorely disappointed and become more realistic in their views on government.

The 2nd Amendment will be trampled upon. We will at least see Clinton-like restrictions on ownership, which are similar to California law. We may see even stronger restrictions. The goal is not to make America safer, but to make it more pliable. Many previous posts outline my position that gun control is much less effective than criminal control, and that the arming of lawful citizens with appropriate training makes society safer from those bent on harming it.

We will leave Iraq. No credit to Obama on this one, it's already in the works and planned for completion by 2011. I fully support getting our troops out.

Energy will get very, very expensive. Note that I'm a strong supporter of alternative energy technologies. I simply recognize that most of them are variable producers and as such, require more traditional energy sources to back them up. The cleanest and cheapest is nuclear, which I don't believe Obama fully understands or supports despite its proven track record in Europe, Japan, and even right here in the U.S. It is a pity one Jane Fonda film has had such an impact on such a vital power source.

We will see promised cuts in military and weapons programs, much as we saw under Clinton.

We will see less respect for the unborn and less respect.

We will see less respect for the system of government designed by the founders of this nation. See this post for more extensive thoughts on the last two points.

Changes I Hope We'll See:

I hope we'll get out of Afghanistan. As I've heard it put, it's an "ungovernable hellhole." Striking the group that supported Osama Bin Laden was just and defensible. Trying to make a nation out of a patchwork of tribal regions is ludicrous, as we've demonstrated. It's time to stop throwing money and lives away in the attempt.

I hope we'll see full decriminalization of marijuana. This is my libertarian streak coming out. Note that I don't use alcohol, tobacco, marijuana or any other illegal mind or mood altering drug. I remain entirely unintoxicated through personal and moral conviction, not through government mandate. While I will never use marijuana, approaching this from a practical standpoint, the current ban is not worth the blood or money we expend to enforce it. By maintaining a ban on more dangerous controlled substances and dropping it on marijuana, we underscore the importance of avoiding the harder drugs and take marijuana out of the hands of dealers, who use it as a gateway to get more addictive substances into the hands of casual users. I do not support the decriminalization of heroine, cocaine, methamphetamines or illegal drugs, as I believe the harm they can do to society justifies the cost of their continued ban.

I hope Obama will live up to his recent speech promising cuts to unneeded government programs. I fear Congress will demonstrate he hasn't power to back up those statements. I fear that where he succeeds, only more conservative programs will lose funding.

I hope my thoughts on Obama will change as he demonstrates himself to be the moderate President many feel he will be instead of the extremist I fear we may have elected.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Good Call

Obama has asked Robert Gates to stay on as Secretary of Defense.

I hoped that would happen.

Now I hope Robert Gates says yes.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Obama's not Skipping Church

After reading this article, I wrote in to the Armstrong and Getty show and made air with an e-mail, as they were discussing the same subject. Here it is:
Obama hasn't been skipping church, no matter what the article says. Remember, his faith was repackaged Marxism, or "Black Liberation Theology." He's still a Marxist, so he's practicing just fine. Also, he started going to church mostly to gain power. He has the power, so is a member in good standing.

When you worship power and Marxism, you don't actually need a church to renew your devotion.
Today national talk show host Glenn Beck expressed similar thoughts. I knew I wasn't the only one to have the idea, I'm just surprised that anyone would be in any way shocked that Obama doesn't attend a physical church. Given the above, of course he doesn't.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Just plain funny

I guess they would be less funny if they weren't so true.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Iran can build a bomb

Best estimates today say that Iran now has enough nuclear material to go on to the next step in nuclear bomb making. They continue to insist that they only want nuclear power reactors. You know, the cleanest available reliable power on the planet that aging hippies who watched Jane Fonda's China Syndrome too many times won't let us build in the U.S.?

Iran's afloat in oil, but it's harder to extract and refine than the oil available to many Middle Eastern nations, so it's surprisingly reasonable for them to want nuclear power reactors. Why are people scared, then?

Traditional Mutual Assured Destruction deterrence like the U.S. had with the U.S.S.R. relies on the concept that both nations desire to continue to exist, so neither will launch a nuclear attack that will end both. Iran is scary because the real rulers there are the mullahs. Iran is a theocracy, and some of them truly believe that the only way to achieve the end goal of their faith is to vaporize Israel and attack the West. How better to do that than with nuclear weapons? In short, we're afraid of Iran with nuclear weapons because we believe that they're much more likely to use them than almost any other nation on earth.

The U.S. unleashed low-power nuclear weapons to end a horrible war before we really knew the dangers and potential repercussions. We learned, and we never used them again. Iran knows the full repercussions, and doesn't care. That's scary.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The 2nd Amendment saves a pregnant woman and two small children

Don't believe lawful citizens need firearms? Here's a story from my area, source here. It is regrettable that anyone lost his life. I am happy it was a criminal, not a father, his pregnant wife or children. I sincerely hope that the other criminals involved will be caught and punished, but even if not, they will certainly be less likely to try a home invasion in the future.

Invaders ram door; shotgun fells one

Published: Wednesday, Sep. 10, 2008

He told police there were only moments to decide.

Several people – at least one with a gun – were breaking through the front door of his Del Paso Heights home. His pregnant wife and two children, ages 2 and 3, slept in a back bedroom.

As the would-be invaders forced the door open, the man told police, he believed he had to act. He stuck the barrel of his shotgun into the expanding gap and pulled the trigger.

A 19-year-old man took a shot to the torso, stumbled several yards and fell dead. His accomplices – police don't know how many – fled.

The attempted break-in took place about 12:20 a.m. Tuesday at a home on the 800 block of Carmelita Avenue, just off Rio Linda Boulevard, according to the Sacramento Police Department.

Sgt. Matt Young, the department spokesman, said the home's occupant likely won't face charges for the early morning shooting because his actions appear to meet the standard for justifiable self-defense.

"The final disposition will lie with the district attorney, but at this time and stage of the investigation, we don't intend to arrest him," Young said.

The Bee is not naming the resident because the dead man's accomplices are still at large.

Sacramento County coroner's officials identified the slain 19-year-old as Jamal D. Ellison. Police said they have only vague descriptions of the dead man's accomplices.

The shooting took place in a small tract of modular homes, each separated by a patch of lawn, on a blighted Del Paso Heights cul-de-sac.

After the shooting, said Felicia Guajardo, another resident of the complex, her neighbor paced frantically along the walkway that separates two rows of homes, shotgun in hand, screaming for neighbors to call 911.

Eventually, he made his way to the home of another neighbor, Robert Jerome. Jerome said his friend did not have a phone and asked Jerome's family to call police.

"He was crying and hysterical," Jerome said. "I've never seen a grown man jumping up and down in tears like that."

Jerome said he ushered the man's family into his own home before going out in the street to check the body.

"He was wearing a full beanie and gloves," Jerome said. "Those guys came to kill."

Looking on Tuesday as a crime-scene cleanup crew scrubbed blood off the walkway, Jerome said residents of the complex were lucky their neighbor acted so decisively.

"Anyone that tries to come into someone's home like that, you deserve the consequences," he said.

Legal experts contacted by The Bee said the resident is unlikely to face legal consequences if the shooting unfolded as police describe. Like most states, California authorizes the use of deadly force in situations where people feel that they or their family members are in grave danger.

The concept that one's "home is a castle" is a legal principle that dates back to English common law, said Floyd Feeney, a professor of criminal law at the University of California, Davis, School of Law.

"If someone is trying to come in your front door with a gun, you are generally going to wind up being authorized to respond with deadly force," Feeney said.

More end of the Republic

Yeah, I know. I'm always saying it's the end of the republic. Seriously, though, our system depends on educated voters, and I mean educated on the Constitution and how government actually works, not what candidates were wearing or who was pregnant.

The "Who's in control of Congress" question floored me. Congress usually gets an approval rating in the low teens, and peopled don't even know who they're mad at, because they don't know who has control of our legislative branch!

Yup, it's over.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Philosophy in the oddest of places

My wife has turned me on to a series of mystery novels, which is a very out of character genre for me. Imagine my surprise when I came across the following:

"Look at history. Those in power have habitually found nasty uses for those without it. And, all too often, they claim it's for the greater good. You could have a group of highly skilled, intelligent people who've decided they know what's best for humanity. Nothing, in my opinion, is more dangerous."

It's rather reminiscent of this quotation. This is what scares me most about the incoming administration and a congress that won't oppose him. While claiming to be all about bettering people's lives, they're already discussing how to make sure they never lose power again. They want to institute the "Fairness Doctrine" to silence conservative talk radio without bothering to balance the liberal content of PBS and NPR stations. Worse yet, while claiming to want to better the lives of the poor, they're really planning to make them dependent on government for their support. Rather than working their way out of poverty, the poor will keep voting these same people into power.

It bears repeating: "You could have a group of highly skilled, intelligent people who've decided they know what's best for humanity. Nothing, in my opinion, is more dangerous."

The American Dream isn't built on punishing the successful. It's for anyone with a dream to build an idea into a success by creating a needed good or service, thus enriching not only themselves, but all of society. No government handout can replace the brilliance of this system. No tax and spend policy will bring greater benefit to society than true entrepreneurial spirit.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Aftermath of Prop 8

In the aftermath of the passage of California's Proposition 8, there's been a lot of turmoil. I can't help but think that had the No on Prop 8 crowd been this organized prior to the election, they might have won. What disturbs me at this point, whether you support same-sex marriage or not, are the actions of extremists of the No on 8 side. Let's compare demeanor and attitude. Here's the famed clip of Gavin Newsom gloating following the overturning of Proposition 22, the initial Proposition passed by over 60% of California voters declaring marriage to be between a man and a woman. Audio quality is poor, but turn it up and you can hear both his words and his tone.

That incredible, smug attitude saved the Yes on Prop 8 campaign millions of dollars of advertising and work. They say a picture is worth 1,000 words. One gloating gasbag is worth millions.

Contrast that attitude with the official press release put out the day after the election by the most vilified of the faiths involved in the multi-faith coalition to protect traditional marriage. Original release here.

We hope that now and in the future all parties involved in this issue will be well informed and act in a spirit of mutual respect and civility toward those with a different position. No one on any side of the question should be vilified, intimidated, harassed or subject to erroneous information.

Allegations of bigotry or persecution made against the Church were and are simply wrong. The Church’s opposition to same-sex marriage neither constitutes nor condones any kind of hostility toward gays and lesbians. Even more, the Church does not object to rights for same-sex couples regarding hospitalization and medical care, fair housing and employment rights, or probate rights, so long as these do not infringe on the integrity of the traditional family or the constitutional rights of churches.
There's no ambiguity in these statements. Short of actually redefining marriage, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has no objection to any and all rights for same-sex couples, and believes they should be treated equally under the law. Same-sex couples are not to be harassed, vilified, intimidated, and their views are to be treated with respect and civility. In the coverage of the follow up to the passage of Proposition 8, the Yes on 8 supporters seem to have done just that. No Gavin Newsom style gloating.

Once again, contrast that attitude to this man's account of what he saw and participated in in Los Angeles. He recounts anger, militant violence and bigotry committed against one of the many faiths involved in this coalition. These are hate crimes, including clear acts of vandalism and assaults on holy places of worship, but they don't seem to count so long as they're committed against a group it's politically correct to hate. Notice that demonstrators don't have the courage to face the Catholic church. Notice that they ignore the fact that a majority of Latinos and a vast majority, 70% of African Americans voted for Proposition 8. After all, it's not politically correct ot act in such an inappropriate manner toward minorities. No, the bigoted extremists within the No on 8 campaign like to hit the easy targets, which is a behavior usually called cowardice.

Is the Catholic church quiet about being overlooked in these demonstrations? If you just listen to the news, you'd think they were, but they haven't been.

(This news release was issued by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento) The following statement was released today by Bishop William Weigand, head of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento and former Bishop of Salt Lake City, in response to attacks on (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) for supporting California’s Proposition 8, defending the traditional definition of marriage:

“Catholics stand in solidarity with our Mormon brothers and sisters in support of traditional marriage — the union of one man and one woman — that has been the major building block of Western Civilization for millennia.

“The ProtectMarriage coalition, which led the successful campaign to pass Proposition 8, was an historic alliance of people from every faith and ethnicity. LDS were included — but so were Catholics and Jews, Evangelicals and Orthodox, African-Americans and Latinos, Asians and Anglos.

“Bigoted attacks on Mormons for the part they played in our coalition are shameful and ignore the reality that Mormon voters were only a small part of the groundswell that supported Proposition 8.

“As the former bishop of the Diocese of Salt Lake City, I can attest to the fact that followers of the Mormon faith are a good and generous people with a long history of commitment to family and giving to community causes.

“I personally decry the bigotry recently exhibited towards the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — coming from the opponents of Proposition 8, who ironically, have called those of us supporting traditional marriage intolerant.

“I call upon the supporters of same-sex marriage to live by their own words — and to refrain from discrimination against religion and to exercise tolerance for those who differ from them. I call upon them to accept the will of the people of California in the passage of Proposition 8.”

Source here.

The careless disregard of the democratic process displayed by No on Prop 8 demonstrators in attacking individual donors to the Yes on Proposition 8 campaign won't be addressed in detail here, but is a serious threat to the future of free and fair elections where people demonstrate peacefully, donate without fear and speak up about causes they support. Don't believe it? One example here, more on the subject here, and a little research will turn up more examples of harrassment and other anti-democratic actions by No on 8 protestors.

One side of this debate, when they won in the overturning of Proposition 22, was boastful, unpleasant, and gloating in their victory. The other side went to work in defense of traditional marriage, and worked quietly and tirelessly to protect what they believe is an important pillar of our civilization. By the way, they're not the only ones who agree, and conservatives and faith-based communities aren't the only ones who spoke out on this, examples here and here. The Yes on 8 side won, even though they were outspent financially, through solid organization and fervent belief that failure would harm our society. The difference in the level of respect and attitude are glaringly obvious. Most of the Yes on 8 crowd agree with the jist of Elton John's recent comments. That is, same-sex civil unions to be recognized by the U.S. Federal government are fine, but the word Marriage, as a traditional and religious term, should be left alone and not redefined.

Following the passage of Proposition 8 I went online and suggested to communities ways they could alleviate the concerns that caused the passage of this measure, including initiating their own proposition to ease concerns about judicial activism, guaranteeing faith communities could not be sued for their beliefs, sermons or ceremonies and providing that sexuality issues, save for current health education curriculum only, shall not be taught in schools. I didn't address the validity of those concerns, only how they might be overcome, yet I was attacked viciously. I learned: there is no reasoning with the extremists. They're out for blood. They want to sue religion out of existence, and they must be opposed (with respect--a concept they haven't mastered) at all costs.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Investigating Bush

The Drudge Report says, with no further details, "Democrats prepare to move forward with investigations of the Bush administration."

Oh, good, Democrats. That long-awaited investigation of Bush. With the multiple crises going on in the world, investigating the outgoing president should get your approval rating from 11% to 7%. In short, Congress, people appreciate the societal contributions of puppy kickers more than yours.

Why not try doing something useful that Americans actually would like to see done? Perhaps a secure border? Maybe a balanced budget?


Update 11/13/2008--Here's the full story. Again, Congress, we don't care. Please take care of the important crises instead of doing pointless investigations at taxpayer cost.

The 1st Amendment already under attack

I thought we'd have to wait for President-Elect Obama to take office for freedom of speech to be assaulted using the so-called "Fairness Doctrine." Evidently some people are a bit more eager to start the censorship. Evidently, the Durham Police department doesn't permit freedom of speech.

"Police Chief Jose L. Lopez Sr. said, 'It wasn't a racial slur, but we're still investigating it.'" While you might argue that police officers must be held to a higher standard on duty, the comments being investigated appeared on officers' MySpace pages. If it's not a racial slur, and it's not a threat against our President-Elect, it may be in poor taste, but it's protected speech.

What have I learned? The Charlotte Observer needs a spell checker (they may correct the headline "investigage" by the time you see the article), and even if Mr. Obama disagrees with censorship of criticism, this worshippers supporters may be more zealous in their protection of their new leader.

Banks Still Planning To Pay Bonuses

This one is a no brainer. If your company is receiving taxpayer money to bail your company out -- bonuses are cancelled. I'm not sorry.

So check out this news story featured on Drudge Report: Hard Times But Still Big Wall Street Bonuses

I think somebody should put together a new show, specifically aimed at Wall Street bailout recipients with the following theme. (Must Watch Video).

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Lest You Think All Voters Are Literate....

In all fairness, Obama did roundly defeat McCain in the 'People With Advanced Degrees' demographic. So there are plenty of INFORMED voters who pulled the lever for Obama.

But watch the video. It's great.

Stealing an election

It's fascinating to see the party which has so vehemently accused George Bush of election fraud mastering the art so quickly. Glenn Beck interviewed a statistician on senate race Al Franken is suddenly winning. The transcript is available here.

Change you can count on

If there's one thing Barack Obama promised, it's change. Changes to have proven him true to his word. Most Presidents can't live up to their campaign promises, but this seems like an unusually brief run for Mr. Obama's ideas for change.

Monday, November 10, 2008

A Voice of Warning

In their rush to get him elected, the major media have largely ignored some frightening warning signs from President-Elect Obama. I'm with everyone who says, "He's my President, and I will support him as such." I will, and sincerely hope we'll see a presidency similar to Bill Clinton's rather than one like Jimmy Carter's, or worse, Woodrow Wilson's.

Still, there is real cause for concern, and in the jubilation of carrying their candidate into office on their uncritical shoulders, the media has failed to examine Mr. Obama's record and statements on several topics. Congressman Paul Broun took a brave stance in today's environment and issued a timely warning.

What concerned him so much? The same thing that should concern all of us: a July speech given by then Senator and presidential hopefull Barack Obama.

"We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded."

If that statement doesn't trouble you, you haven't thought enough about it. There's a problem just with the fiscal implications. I thought we couldn't afford our expensive wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to Mr. Obama. How would we fund a force just as costly at home? Why would we want to?

Of much greater concern is what Mr. Broun correctly indicates, "That's exactly what Hitler did in Nazi Germany and it's exactly what the Soviet Union did. When he's proposing to have a national security force that's answering to him, that is as strong as the U.S. military, he's showing me signs of being Marxist."

I'm sure the media will have nothing but scorn for Rep. Broun's comments, but given how both fascists and communists treated their media, it would behoove them to at least lift their rose-colored glasses long enough to give President-Elect Obama a long, critical look and assign a reporter or two to watch him more closely than they've done in the past. While I hope President Obama will never do anything to justify Mr. Broun's concerns, the price of freedom has always been constant vigilance, something that's been sorely lacking in coverage of our intelligent and capable President-Elect.

Couldn't Have Said It Better Myself

Deroy Murdock has an article up in the National Review today. It articulates some of the frustrations I've had with the GOP for the last 14 years. I highly recommend you read it yourself, it's worth the 3 minutes it will take up in your life.

My favorite excerpt:

"Now, what about those whom Obama and his supporters vanquished? What the Republican party badly needs is a Night of the Long Knives....

...Nevertheless, Bush is the GOP’s Jimmy Carter, a weak bumbler who embarrassed his constituents, betrayed his philosophical movement, sank his party, and eventually surrendered the White House to the opposition, this time led by the Senate’s Number One liberal, still in his first term. Bush should retire quietly to Texas, where he can drive his truck, chop wood, and avoid the limelight for the balance of his natural existence.

Bush could use someone to sweep the leaves at his ranch. I nominate Karl Rove. Why on Earth is he always on TV spewing advice?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Letter to the Governor and my California State Representatives

Governor Schwarzenegger introduced the idea of "revenue increases" last week to help with California's budget issues. I wrote in response to the governor and my Senate and Assembly representatives. I encourage all Californians to do the same.

I’m writing out of concern at the idea of “increasing revenue” for California State government. California’s families haven’t received a revenue increase. In fact, many of us are suffering from revenue reductions. Using the euphemism “revenue increase” doesn’t change the fact that what's being proposed is raising taxes, which is something the average Californian can’t afford.

We lost about 90,000 Californians in state-to-state moves last year, a number buried by the influx of immigrants from outside of the U.S. That means we’re trading established taxpayers for people who will be productive soon, but may need the benefit of some basic services right now.

Raising taxes in the current economy will drive more established families out of California. For other families, like mine, which aren’t in a position to move, it may mean the difference between barely making things work financially, and failing to make things work, causing us to lose our homes and become burdens on the state.
While California families are desperately trying to cut all the expenses we can to remain solvent, it’s unfair to ask us to pay the expenses of a government unwilling to make similar cuts. I recognize the difficult and unpopular nature of such cuts, but face analogous cuts in personal finances myself. I’m not asking you as my representative to do anything I’m unwilling to do myself.

Another suggestion, however unpopular with the more extreme environmental activists, is to open California coasts to safe, responsible oil drilling, providing a new source of tax revenue geologically tied to our state and thus unable to flee California’s high tax, anti-business environment.

Please review the following analysis of California’s budget problem and take to heart the suggestions for elimination of wasteful spending proposed by this analyst. I sincerely hope you’ll consider them before harming my ability to provide for my family. Thank you for your time.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Why you should homeschool or be very involved in your child's education

Once you get past the intro in Finnish, this documentary from a U.S. classroom ought to shock you. As a former educator (I spent two years teaching), I was truly surprised. First, I'd never think to take the name of deity in vain in response to a child's answer. Whether you're religious or not, it's an inappropriate response. Secondly, I'd never manipulate children's political views in this fashion. Help them learn how to think critically, yes. Try blatantly to form their belief systems, no.

Source with a lengthier discussion is here. A news article about it here. The teacher should be fired, but I'm sure her union will protect her.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Big Jay reviews change

This is just a quick post to point out a thoughtful consideration of what changes a fellow Blogger, Big Jay thinks and hopes may be in store. Why should you have a look? Well, Big Jay happens to be a very bright fellow. I know he understands the stock market much better than I do, and that happens to be a very complex system.

On reflection, I do think there will be additional, unpleasant changes in store, and I'll elaborate in another post in the near future.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Unpaid Campaign Workers

Reports of Barack Obama failing to pay some campaign workers seem kind of odd. After all, he's rolling in campaign cash. Still, Omerica should have no fear. He doesn't take care of his own family, despite having plenty of resources to do so. He doesn't take care of his campaign workers. I'm sure he'll take care of you, though.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Stocks down again

Just when things were looking up on Wall Street for a while, suddenly, the day after we elect a socialist president, the market plunges! In fact, it's the biggest post-election drop in history. It's funny how the market responds when you promise to raise capital gains and corporate taxes. Everybody gets out of the market while there's still some profit in it. If I were a major corporation, I'd be looking into moving to the middle region of Mexico today. Thanks, President-Elect Obama!

On a more humorous note...

Does this mean when I go to fill up my car, instead of paying I can say, "Obama is President--this gas is on you!"? That's some gnarly punctuation, but you get the idea. I'm also wondering if I can write my mortgage company and let them know that since Obama is President, they can stop billing me.

The Federal Government is Father. The Federal Government is Mother. I have to go drink more socialist Kool Aid now...

The End of the U.S.

I had great faith the U.S. was perfectly fine with an African American president. Despite many claims to the contrary, I don't believe we're a racist nation. I'm gratified to see that belief validated this morning.

What I didn't anticipate was that we were prepared to give up our uniqueness; the principles of governance that gave us such great freedom, and unmatched prosperity fueled. In recent months we've seen what prolonged government interference in the economy can do, yet we've opted to elect a man who promises to use cap and trade of carbon dioxide to bankrupt our coal power industry and cause energy prices to skyrocket.

One of my friends claims Barack Obama will govern as a centrist. I hope that's true, but what voting record exists wouldn't seem to support the idea. I anticipate significantly higher taxes that may be the knockout punch for our economy, banning of firearms on a scale that would make Bill and Hillary Clinton drool, and when many of us lose our jobs as our employers make cuts to retain profitability in the face of the new taxes, French-style welfare that will sap our wills to go back to work (assuming there are jobs to apply for).

I could absolutely be wrong, and I hope I am. I sincerely fear I'm not. In the coming weeks, I'll post some excerpts from The 5,000 Year Leap, which I hope you'll read to see what we've given up and what I hope we'll eventually get back to. I believe George Bush drove what I'm hearing called Paleoconservatism out of the Republican Party, leading to this defeat.

Perhaps one party socialism in the U.S. will be a reasonable thing as it seems to be in Scandinavian countries, but the possibility of the more sinister forms we see in Venezuela and China can not be overlooked.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Jim Moran on Wealth

Jim Moran (Virginia Representative in the House of Representatives) says, "We've been guided by a Republican administration who believes in the simplistic notion that people who have wealth are entitled to keep it."

Um, yes. It's the right to Life, Liberty and Property (the original words the founders were going to use, but chose not to so as to avoid indicating slavery was acceptable).

This is posted all over the place, and rightly so.

For those swayed by polling

If you're swayed by polling, please remember that exit polls have been wrong for a long time. They declared John Kerry the winner in 2004, Al Gore the winner in 2000, and I believe Jimmy Carter the winner in 1980. No matter what your convictions, please vote according to them, not according to any polling.

One Nation, Indivisible

After I’d cast my vote on November 7, 2000, I said to a lady walking out of the polling place with me, “I’m glad that’s done. Tomorrow we can all just be Americans again instead of being so divided.” She smiled and nodded. Little did I know that there would be legal challenges, recounts and an unprecedented ordeal to follow. It was almost as though a president had never been chosen by electoral votes even though he’d lost the popular vote. In reality, it had happened at least twice before.

I have begun to wonder if we will ever reunite as a nation, and what it means if we don’t. Since the Civil War, even the bitterest of disagreements have been set aside after elections, and everyone has accepted the outcome of the free and fair exercise of our vote. The 2000 election marked the first time in my memory courts and attorneys were involved in any significant, public manner. The result has been truly ugly. Although there have always been some irregularities in various elections, the accuracy of the system as a whole had never been doubted. Now questioning elections has become second nature in only a few short years, and today’s election will be supervised by tens of thousands of attorneys. I understand how Al Gore felt, but still deeply wish he’d stepped aside when it became clear the way the electoral votes would swing, as so many gentlemen had done before him.

Worse than the undermining of our election process, however, is the undermining of our unity. We’d always been one nation (most of us under God), indivisible. We agreed on principles, if not on policy. We all wanted a stronger America. We all wanted to be safe, and we all wanted effective laws and an effectual government. After an election, despite some inevitable grumbling, we all supported our president and respected the Office of the Presidency, and we cared about our country more than about who happened to occupy the chief executive office for a few years. After all, should our candidate not win, there would be another election in 4 years.

The division that has developed since 2000 seems to be a desperately wide gulf, but it doesn’t have to be. The House of Representatives and the Senate are likely going to be occupied by even larger Democratic Party majorities by morning, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Do I disagree with their policies? Yes, I do, and I think they’ll hurt the economy* and perhaps perpetuate the rift between ideological groups, but I also recognize the fact that if they do those things, the next election will see a change of power yet again. That’s the first step in reunifying: we must recognize that the party we happen to disagree with winning an election is not the end of the world.

The second step is to recognize that most Americans are not at the far edge of their ideology, whether conservative or liberal. Many of the Democrats who will win tonight will succeed because they’re not the ultra-liberal fringe of their party, but moderates. The core of America is still moderate. If we fail to recognize that our similarities are greater than our differences we will remain divided, and as Lincoln observed, paraphrasing a Biblical quotation, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” While I don’t think the country would fall apart in the face of prolonged differences, I do think that the longer we remain separated into vehement ideological camps, the less our “representatives” have to actually represent us. They can continue lining their pockets and doing whatever lobbyists tell them to, or nothing at all, so long as we’re fighting each other instead of watching them.

No matter who controls our legislative or executive branches in the morning, all Americans will win if we begin again to hold our representatives accountable to us rather than staying at each other throats.

*This post isn't about division, but it is notable that I first wrote it on 11/07/2006. The paragraph read: "The House of Representatives and the Senate are likely going to be occupied by Democratic Party majorities by morning, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Do I disagree with their policies? Yes, I do, and I think they’ll hurt the economy and perhaps perpetuate the rift between ideological groups..." Is our economy better, or worse off than prior to the 2006 elections? While it's not fair to blame one party for the current economic difficulties, it's clear that one party has certainly worked to prevent recent reform efforts that might have helped avoid it. For more information, please read Orson Scott Card's essay on the subject.

The 2nd Amendment vs. a Serial Rapist

This is why we have the 2nd Amendment:
The Cape Girardeau prosecutor says a woman shot and killed a registered sex offender who broke into her home about a week after he allegedly raped her.

Prosecutor Morley Swingle says the woman on Friday identified the man, 47-year-old Ronnie Preyer, as the same man who broke into her home and raped her days earlier. The prosecutor says the woman was justified in using deadly force.

Preyer allegedly first broke a basement window in the woman's home Saturday and raped her.

On Friday morning, the woman called 911 when she heard a car door slam. Police came but didn't find anyone else in her home. Two hours later, Preyer allegedly broke through the same basement window. The woman tried to call police again, but said Preyer had turned off her electricity. She says she shot him as he crashed through the basement door.

I guess the real question is, why is a guy with 11 felony arrests, 5 convictions (including a 10-year sentence in 1989 for rape), and a registered sex offender walking around free?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Obama Flips, Then He Flops, Or Just Plain Lies

Just one last time, let's take a look at Obama's lies. Here they are, the promise and the breaking of the promise, or the policy statement followed by the opposing policy statement (sometimes on the very next day!).


The new FDR

I heard in this morning's news reports that some in the Barack Obama campaign are studying the first 100 days of FDR's presidency.

I've put this up twice before. If you haven't seen it or read it yet, please take the time to do so. I'll post the raw link to make it easy:

This is UCLA, not some conservative think tank. We're headed for it again if we don't have some sort of brake on the congress that caused the current economic mess. It wasn't the Bush administration's policies, though they didn't help. For a thoughtful and easy to read essay on it, have a look at Democrat Orson Scott Card's summation: